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I’ve made me a Hallowe’en cocktail consisting of black vodka, cherry liquor, and some eye of newt. The ice cube is in the shape of a skull; the black/red liquor coat it in a gruesome glow. Fabulous, if I do say so myself. 

The outside of the house is decorated in purple and orange lights; my two pumpkins glow to fend off evil spirits. The beggars – only a few so far – seem appreciative of my cauldron of candy. I am feeling quite happy, although this may be the black cocktail talking hohoho. My brothers have been texting back and forth with photos of their halloween shenanigans.*  Spos love their Halloween.  

I’m glad to see my industry paid off; he house looks quite festive. I’m glad to see my childhood holiday – chockfull of happy memories – still has magic and allure. I am also glad to see this ancient holiday hasn’t succumbed to time, reason, or religious persecution. 

After the beggars stop I will make chili using a flank steak, which is the official food on All Hallow’s Eve at the House of Spo. I will read my tarot cards for the upcoming year.  I can go to bed wholly satisfied it has been a marvelous month.  I feel glad. 

A Blessed Samhain to all. 

 

*Brother and SIL #2 are dressed this evening as Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett. Despite our texts demanding to know the whereabouts of the nephews they won’t say. The Other Brothers and I fear the worst. 

Note – this one was written without too much editing. I merely wrote out what was on my mind. I hope it catches well enough the emotions running through my mind this evening –  Spo. 

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I received a letter today from Mrs. K.  Curious the timing ! It arrived just after the AIDS walk and right before The Day of the Dead. She sent me some exotic sweets and an article. Fundies and Right-wing religious folks (Jews, Christians, and Moslems) often quote Leviticus to say how gay sex is an abomination. The article questions this approach and interpretation.

Back in the late 80s/early 90s I shared lodgings with Robert. He was not my boyfriend but a roommate. We made an odd couple: he was a Jew from an elegant old Southern family and I was the Midwest WASP. I got to know his parents some, who were dignified formal Southern gentry. Mrs. K was elegance incarnate; her Richmond accent emitted grace. A few moths after he moved out I tried to get hold of him for some matters only to have his parents tell me Robert was dying. They never said the words HIV or AIDS, and he would not speak with me. Back then there was a lot of shame about this sort of thing. I never got to say good-bye. 

Years past; the internet was born. Thanks to Facebook I made friends with Mrs. K who was now a widow. At first I did this just to say I still remember Robert; I was worried I would open old wounds for her.  However she did not decline a correspondence. Over the years we have been back and forth with comments and IM.  

Despite our differences I suspect we stick together for the memory of Robert. We share his memory although we seldom directly mention him.  Her card makes me think I fill a role for her,  a sort of substitute for her son. I like to think Robert would be pleased as punch to know he lives on in a way through our correspondence.  

This card is not just a card of love and memory – there is a sense of solidarity. She seems to say she supports me. Curious, Mrs. K was on my mind this week after the Jewish temple shooting. She and I are both facing ominous politics.  I am glad to have her in my life. 

I apologize for the lack of postings. Life is strange but true. I don’t have time to post a proper post. Here are some photos from yesterday’s AIDS walk.  Enjoy.

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Thanks to the generosity of Spo-fans I earned enough money to receive and don the special “Hero’s cape”.  I was pleased as punch: the cape matches my eyes.

 

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I walked: Someone ran. We were both satisfied with our accomplishments.

 

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There are many booths. I got these fabulous specs to protect my glazzies from the intense mornings sunshine. They also match the cape – and my eyes.

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There were many walkers; many were well over four feet.

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In order not to get too tired I paced myself. I got behind someone who had the same pace as Urs Truly. This way I could concentrate on the road.

 

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The dears! The walk provided facilities for thems who found it all too exciting.

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I was positively radiant.

 

 

It’s been another wacky work week. I am still absorbing the patients from the retired nurse. I feel like the captain of a full-to-capacity life boat that is obliged to take on more from the nearby boat that suddenly sank. There’s been little if no time to do much else let alone blog.  Boo hoo and woes is me.

This weekend looks to be better. There is work to be done of course but  Someone, Master of Events and Knocker of Heads, has arranged some events for us to attend.  I hope the itinerary cheers me up some for I’ve been quite down in the doldrums what with work and politics, the latter I am avoiding until I get build better boundaries. I got nothing better to write, so here it is for Spo-fans to marvel at or at least get The Board of Directors Here at Spo-Reflections off my back until I can think of something witty or profound.

Someone reminded me this morning tonight we go to hear a concert. Josh Groban is singing in the downtown event center, in which I have never set foot. I am more intrigued to see the building than hear Mr. Groban sing, although I suspect I will enjoy such. I hope Mr. Groban isn’t too loud for I forgot my earplugs at home.  Chances are we won’t be sitting up front with the Groban groupies no doubt jumping up and down and getting in people’s view of the stage.  Getting downtown after work (and home) will be a bit ticklish so we must be patient.

Someone works all Saturday; I forget if I show up at any of his theatre gigs. I may be home alone again which gives me amble time to set up the outside Halloween decorations. The next door street has many homes bedecked with orange lights and such. Our street’s got nothing so far.

Sunday sees two events. The annual AIDS walk is in the morning. Thanks to the generosity of Spo-fans and friends at Facebook I raised enough money to earn me a ‘hero’s cape”.  Apparently with my T-shirt I get a red cape ala Superman to where while walking.  I’ve not worn one before so this should be jolly good fun albeit a bit foolish looking.  Oh well, it is for a good cause.  That afternoon the silent movie “The Phantom of the Opera” will be shown accompanied by live organ music.  I suspect the average age of the attendees will rival or surpass that seen at the opera. I don’t think I’ve ever seen this movie; I am looking forward to it.  After this week I feel I look like Ron Chaney.

In the comments I’m curious to hear from you. Do you:

  1. Decorate your abode for All Hallow’s Eve
  2. Have weekend plans
  3. Seen “The Phantom of the opera” – the movie, not the show.

We had rain this evening which cooled things down enough to me to open some windows and turn off the AC – again.  Earlier this week it was hot so it was back on. In that brief ‘Indian summer’ I foolishly went for a dip in the cement pond, which caused some temporary hypothermia.  Harper abhors water so there is no “Walking the Dog” entry this evening. Someone is on the other side of he house, watching TV as is his wont.  But the volume I hear it’s The Big Bang.  Harper is asleep on the bed; I have only myself for company. 

At work it seems a lot of patients have recently asked me if I was going anywhere or retiring. Yet another shrink here in the valley has closed shop. As a consequence they come to me often with angst I too may disappear on them. By now I have lost count how many practices I’ve incorporated into my own. I’ve been at the same job since 2005; baring an accident or a heart attack I am not going anywhere. Who knows though. Given so many people hoping I will stay put perhaps makes a jinx and my days are now numbered. I see I have a very difficult person coming in by the end of the week. Perhaps X will be the one who brings me down or even shoots me. Just my luck too to have made all those Halloween treats and not live long enough to see them out.  

On a less morbid note, tomorrow night I attend a live podcast show. one of my many subscriptions is in town for a performance. Someone will usher while I attend as a spectator. I thought this would be a quiet lecture-type set up but Someone (who knows these things) tells me live-podcast evenings can be quite rowdy.  Unlike the ballet or orchestra where they want you to stay put in your seat, the podcast types hope you get up and go to the lobby and purchase drinks.  I hope the hosts Chuck and Josh have an interesting topic lest I fall asleep as is my wont. Whether it’s funny or not I will give you a full report after Someone carries me back home.  

I am driven to distraction; nothing I write pleases The Board of Directors Here at Spo-Reflections. My recent beg-a-thon entry brought in lots of money (thanks to the munificence of Spo-fans) but the relatively sparse number of comments it generates made TBDHSR moody. Podcast boyfriends entry was worse.  Although The Board has a healthy respect for sea-monsters and haunted houses they thought those entries histrionic. I asked them using my best Katherine Hepburn voice  “All right then, shatter me, what DO you want?”  They suggested I write ‘something sweet’.   So here’s something sweet……

I have put together a pastiche of sweets for the beggars on All Hallow’s Eve. After careful planning – and thanks to the munificence of certain Canadian Spo-fans (the dears!) – I  have just the right types of sweeties. They are a careful collection of hard candies and chews. Some are familiar; some are exotic.[1]  They range in size, shape, and color. 

 

 

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Smarties

Dubble Bubble bubble gum

Red Atomic Jawbreakers

Mackintosh chews

Lemonheads

Hersey’s kisses

Kerr’s molasses candy

Blue Ice cubes

Green Jolly Ranchers

Brown Root Beer Barrels. 

 “Original Halloween Kiss” [2]

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The next step: put one of each sweetie into a plastic black cauldron. It was some job.  I listened to ghost stories and a podcast on werewolves, so it was pleasant packing. On a good night we get nearly 100 trick or treaters; on a bad Halloween we get only 50. I made 96 cauldrons.  Fingers crossed now ! There are some leftovers including some “Coffin Crisps” which wouldn’t fit.  I can pass them out to thems who turn up their noses at my handiwork. [3]

I hope they stand out as something other than another fun size snickers bar.  I am curious to see if my industry is greeted with glee or is looked upon as a disappointment or an object of suspicion.  Do children leave Yelp reviews for Halloween stops?

The beauty of my plan is if there are leftovers they can be passed on to the candy bowls at the office. Goodness knows what to do with any leftover cauldrons. Save them for next year I suppose.

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After each cauldrons is packed I tied on a orange or purple ribbon for a  foudroyant touch.  Suffer Martha !

Then I muttered a magic spell  over them:

“Boil and bubble, 

Dance a jig,

If you eat all these, you’re a polka-dot pig!”

 

[1] If you want to call Kerr’s Candy ‘exotic’. Certainly no local child has ever had one.  I have the intuition the younger kids may turn up their noses at such a strange and exotic candy. I hope I am not casting pearls before swine with this one. Happily I have a full sack of them leftover for my selfish self. 

[2] I can’t quite determine their flavor; they don’t taste like anything I’ve ever had. Spo-fans familiar with this item are encouraged to write in and tell me what they are.

[3] Someone is rather fond of these; I daresay none will make it to 31 October.

Yesterday it was warm enough to brave one more dip into the cement pond. I didn’t linger; it was rawther gelid. Apart from the temperature there was a fear factor as well. I hadn’t bothered to turn on the pool light. Goodness knows what was lurking in the depth in the dark waiting to pull me down to doom; I got out before ‘they’ had connected the dots and rose to the occasion.

Even as a boy I was fearful to go in to water where I could not see the bottom. The phobia was always the same: some sort of monster, fairy, or ghost was down below ready to reach up and grab me by my ankles. Ponds and lakes were inhabited by fairies and monsters while The Great Lakes with their sunken freighters had the ghosts of drowned sailors. *

This fear wasn’t rooted in some sort of near-accident or drowning, nor did my parents scare me with ghost-stories to keep me from going into strange waters.  It all stems from reading the encyclopedia with an overactive imagination.   In World Book, there were countless bogeys whose job it was was to haunt lakes for the sole purpose of pulling people in. 

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My favorite was Jenny Greenteeth. Although I read she resided in England this did not assuage she couldn’t just pop up here in the Midwest. Her cousins like the Grindyloo did similar and were probably more likely to appear in Michigan what with Ms. Greenteeth busy in Brighton.  Later I read most every culture has some sort of maleficent water spirit with a similar job description.  At least the Japanese Kappa could be dissuaded from its dastardly drownings with an offering of cucumbers.  

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Spo-fans may wonder how on earth would Jenny et. al. manage to get into my backyard pool. It’s like asking how does Santa manage to get into all those houses in one evening. It’s best not to think too much about it. True, there’s been no Grindyloo sightings x 10 years but I won’t succumb now to complacency.  I keep ever-vigilant and the pool light stays on. Next time I fancy a dip at midnight I may even bring along a pickle; one can never be too prepared. 

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*It wasn’t clear why the dead were bothering to drag me down. They weren’t going to eat me like the monsters. I suspect they were just bored and were looking for something to do.

A week from now I go on the annual AIDS walk here in town. Once upon a time I used to do these to commemorate the friends who had died in the past year since I last attended. Thanks to research supported by these walks, things have improved. I can not remember when last anyone I know – friend or patient – has died of AIDS. They are living, some of them long enough to be blessed with the usual matters of growing older like any other. Alas, the need for help has not diminished – merely shifted. So – I walk, and I will continue to walk until there is no more need. I walk alone but I carry with me the souls of the dead and of those living with HIV. 

I would be most grateful to you my marvelous Spo-fans if you would pledge something. Someone has included a link at the end of this entry for your convenience.  Five dollars is fine; more is marvelous.  For munificent amounts who knows what I may do for you? 

I will bless you, The Board of Directors Here at Spo-Reflections will bless you, and it will do a lot of good. 

Thank you,

Urspo. 

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https://support.auntritas.org/fundraiser/1486019

 

Note – this is another entry that perturbed The Board of Directors Here at Spo-Reflections. As is sometimes the case they think the contents are literally true and I/they will quickly get slapped with orders of protection from irate podcast hosts. 

I promised them I would write a prologue telling people if they can’t figure out this is humor they can lump it. – Spo

 

Last night while preparing supper I said:

“My boyfriend said something interesting today…” to which Someone interrupted:

“Which one?”  he said.

“Which something?” I replied.

“No, which boyfriend”.

He has a point; I have several.  After some friendly intercourse with one or more of them afterwards I try to tell Someone all about it usually while is trying to eat dinner or watch TV in peace.

Now before Spo-fans go into a swivet, let me explain. I have a handful of handsome hombres (all well over four feet) who host – podcasts that is.  They continually feed me lovely educational tid-bits which I devour with relish. I’ve never met any of them of course but with regular listening I’ve grown into the delusion we have an intimacy of intellect etc.  As we say in my field I am suffering from auditory hallucinations for it is their voices that make me smile etc. Thanks to these lovelies I regularly receive virtual love-letters in the guise of education and hypothetical meet-ups. I’ve always been fonder of facts than fondants.

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Paul Anthony Jones of “Haggard Hawks”  feeds me fancy fustian words oh I love him so.  He has fifty posts on Youtube as well which I sometimes watch just to groan at his awful puns.**

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Aaron Mahnke of “Lore” regularly serenades me via his three podcasts and books and – soon baby! – “Lore” TV series debuting 19 October!  He is also on Twitter.  Only George Takei and Bette Midler tweet more than AM about the nasty president.  He tells ghost stories; he certainly gives me the shivers etc.

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“Myths and legends” podcast is hosted by Jason. He tells me stories every Monday. He is a dear; please don’t feed him buns and things.

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Mr. Savage of “Savage Love” (the dear!) keeps me coming back for the sex. I like to hear the presented problem, pause the podcast, and ponder how I would advise the caller before hearing Dan the Man give his answer.

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If you enjoy history Mr. Mike Duncan is your man over at the “Revolutions” podcast. What a scholar!  One regret: I can’t watch him give the podcast. On second thought that would be bad I wouldn’t listen very well.

I also have a couple of fantasy three ways:

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The fine fellows at “Omnibus” and “Stuff to blow your mind” are two sets of hosts who explore curious things in a well-organized and detailed, cholarly manner. Omnibus is more humorous while SBYM is more scholarly.  Oh to be between either pair to discuss things etc. !

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I also have a couple of girlfriends as well. Tracy and Holly at “Stuff you missed in history” are awesome gal-pals as well as major scholars.  They have a post daily and a weekly too. This week they are giving the history of Charles Addams. Oh the ecstasy!

 

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**I realize Mr. Jones is not a podcaster; he is on Twitter, Youtube, and haggardhawks.com  I had to include him though.   Please don’t write in.

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Last night Someone became vexed that he heard the ‘bing’ announcing a door or window had been opened. He feared a break-in for there is a history of such. I did not hear this bing nor did I think there was an intruder as Harper didn’t move a muscle. A careful inspection of the portals found nothing moved or stolen.  We concluded it was the wind blowing a door shut. I held my tongue to say what was really the matter: Henrik the Ghost has returned.

One of the many reasons I liked “Bewitched” was Samantha’s relations who would literally pop in for a visit without warning. I never could understand why Darrin would be upset by this as his in-laws always brought merriment to brighten what was otherwise a mundane existence. I very much wanted someone similar to pop in to my life.  Many people will not live in a house allegedly haunted but I would have moved into one quick as a quarter note. Indeed I probably would have scared off any ghost  and not the other way around with my enthusiasm to have them drop in for tea and chinwag.

I remember in my youth inventing a group of six wizards who had determined I was their missing seventh mage. They would periodically pop by to convince me to drop out of junior high school and join them. I imagined doing my homework minding my own business only to have one of them appear through the keyhole or suddenly speak through the cassette tape player. I guess they gave up on me as I haven’t heard from any other them since I was 14.

I hear seasoned Spo-fans raising their hands about now saying ‘Wait a minute! What about Henrik?” It is just my luck when I finally get a haunt he is nothing like what I envisioned. It’s like waking up on Christmas morning wanting black cha-cha heels only to be disappointed Santa Claus brought you oh-so-practical brown penny loafers. Yes, Henrik fulfills the criteria of popping in unexpectedly to startle my routines but he does so without flair and he certainly doesn’t bring with him entertainment value. Mostly he just creeps around halls sneaking up behind me and gets on my nerves. It doesn’t help Someone and Harper have never felt his presence. H is a sort of Snuffleupagus rather than an Uncle Arthur or Cousin Serena, worse luck.

Beggars can not be choosers; I should be grateful I have someone or something at all after all these years of posting the position for a pooka. I haven’t heard from Henrik in ages so it is sort of sweet he reappears just in time for Halloween. Last night I got a parcel of candy from Canada, so it may be he was longing for something sweet. Whatever the reason it’s kind of nice to have him back.

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