Thursday, January 04, 2007
Grow Your Own Witch
I am sitting near the site of an old army barracks where, as a teenager, I used to attend a yearly haunted house that served as a fundraiser for the disturbed adolescent house that operated on the by-then decomissioned army base. I loved that haunted house -- by today's standards, it wouldn't be all that scary: a few bloody mirrors, some hatchets, people dressed as ghosts. It certainly couldn't touch the downright bullshit of the new breed of "haunted houses" run by particularly conservative churches in the south designed to show kids what hell will be like if they have the misfortune of wearing the "wrong" clothes and being at the "wrong" place -- rape, shame, death, AIDS, abortion. The explicit message of these places is that everything bad happens to you because you have strayed and gone into a world full of secular evil. I went through one of these once for an article I was writing -- I killed my baby, I killed my baby, screamed a young girl, maybe 15, in a room full of blood and demonic abortion doctors with a disembodied speaker voice intoning, She'll never get another chance. She's infertile now. Sweet Jesus, it made me miss the old barracks haunted house with the "retards operating fake chainsaws" as one of my friends used to put it.
As I was Christmas shopping this year, I saw a teeny-tiny witch doll. The package said, Grow Your Own Witch! The witch becomes 600 times her size if you put her in water. I don't know because I haven't. I considered her as a present for someone who might need a witch; we all need someone to vilify every now and then, I think. And let's face it -- sometimes the other person is the witch and sometimes you are. In my most morally and spiritually exhausted moments, I wish I had the clear-cut enemy that the aforementioned haunted house provides -- that's what's good about simple rules; you don't have to think as much. That said, I'm keeping my witch this year. I won't have to put her in water and watch her grow, though. A small witch is enough for me. I can see the rest of her in myself.
Michelle's Spell of the Day
"It's hard to be free but when it works, it' s worth it!" Janis Joplin
Drinking poetry suggestion: The Pill Versus the Springhill Mine Disaster Richard Brautigan
Benedictions and Maledictions