390: Nightmares

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Nightmares
Well, *I* think I'm real. Look at me. Look at my face. Cut me and I'll bleed. What more do you want? Please don't go.
Title text: Well, *I* think I'm real. Look at me. Look at my face. Cut me and I'll bleed. What more do you want? Please don't go.

[edit] Explanation

This comic shows Cueball's plight with nightmares. Since he's gotten used to normal nightmares, his subconscious has begun giving him dreams where he sees his loved ones imploring him to not wake up, lest they perish, as they only exist in his dream.

The title text continues this, with Megan claiming that she is really real, and begging Cueball to stay with her.

[edit] Transcript

[Caption above the panel:]
When I got used to the regular nightmares, my subconscious got creative.
[Megan is standing with her hand on Cueball's shoulder.]
Megan: Please don't wake up. I don't want to die.

[edit] Trivia

  • This is the first comic posted on a Leap Day (February 29), which fell on a Friday in 2008.
    • It was the first leap year after xkcd began in 2005.
    • The two next years with leap day also had an xkcd release:
    • 1023: Late-Night PBS was released on a Wednesday in 2012.
      • Interestingly enough this also has a theme about strange dreams.
    • The third leap day after xkcd began again fell on a Friday in 2016 and 1649: Pipelines was released then.
    • If the current M-W-F schedule continues, the next such comic will not happen before 2036 when the leap day once more falls on a Friday.
    • Interesting to note that the first three leap years after xkcd began (in just over 10 years) all fell on a release day, then followed by a break of 20 years.
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Discussion

Why would Megan be one of Cueball's loved ones? Maybe she is just a girl in his dream, who only exists in there, therefore she would cease to exist (die), as soon as Cueball wakes up. That's why she begs Cueball the way she does, IMHO. I just don't get the feeling (there is nothing indicating it in the text), that she is/was a loved one in that dream. (not a native English-speaker, sorry if gibberish at times) 141.101.97.215 13:44, 22 April 2014 (UTC)

As stated on Megan's page on the explain xkcd wiki she often appears as a couple with Cueball. So it would make sense to assume she was a loved one. However, your interpretation works just as well. If the dream has lasted long enough for him to become attached to her, she doesn't have to be a loved one. 141.101.88.215 19:07, 8 May 2014 (UTC)

I did remove this from the explain:

'Cut me and I'll bleed' is possibly a reference to Shylock's 'I am a Jew' monologue in The Merchant of Venice, in which he argues that Jews ought to be treated equally to Christians.

I also could cite Martin Luther King and many more... This doesn't explain this comic as well. --Dgbrt (talk) 20:04, 25 May 2014 (UTC)

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