Life in the Slow Lane

Life in the Slow Lane

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Spooky

So I like to think I am a very enlightened, tolerant and open minded sort of gal. I have my own little quirky life filled with my own little quirky likes and dislikes and as such maintain a motto of, “Whatever melts your butter.” While I may not agree with or even remotely understand others and what they do in their lives I also don’t like to harsh on anyone’s mellow by being all judgmental and shit. Everybody has to do their own thing, right?

So along with being enlightened, tolerant and open minded I am also mentally about as mature as a teenaged boy. A very poorly brought up, over imaginative, and under stimulated adolescent male. Combine that with an uncontrollable reflex to joke about inappropriate things and I am exactly the wrong person to take to a funeral, bris, beat poet reading, truck and tractor pull, flaky art opening, or interpretive dance performance. While everybody is deadly serious, enraptured, entertained or sad I am cracking my own shit up and hoping to cause others to snicker at entirely the wrong moments with well timed snide remarks. In a caring and accepting way, of course.

I’ve been told this is a defense mechanism to avoid feeling and displaying strong emotions. I call it a cagey survival instinct. I mean, seriously? Have you seen the phlegm fly from a beat poet’s mouth or the strange and alarming bulges flaunted by unitard wearing dancers? I simply have no other recourse. It is either immaturity or complete brain strangulation.

Fortunately I am in good company. My best friend Pablo has made me promise, at his funeral, to throw myself weeping and screaming onto his casket wearing a fabulous red couture gown. Seriously, this is his wish. In the event that he outlives me I’ve asked him to discreetly pour my cremains into the shoes left outside the private dining booths at the local sushi restaurant.

Here is the thing. Next week there is to be a First Nations cleansing ritual performed on my apartment building. We have all been invited to attend. I’ve told you about the fire that broke out (was set?) in the suite above me. Since then we’ve had numerous false alarms and just a couple weeks ago another fire in a suite caused by a malfunctioning clothing dryer. There have been a few deaths of tenants (lots of elderly folks here) and issues with theft. Then throw in some wild water pipe bursts and rampant appliance failure for fun and you’ve got a decent picture of the last 18 months since the apartment building opened. Basically this place is like living in Yuppy Bagdad. I guess there has been speculation that the spirits might be pissed.

Can you see where I am going here? Intellectually I totally respect all religions and belief systems and actually quite identify with the idea of nature worship. The First Nations people were just that, Canada’s first nation. The actual land where I live was very likely the site of or very near an ancient village. Just around the corner is an honest to goddess Indian burial ground/tourist attraction thingy.

***MRTL Style Tangent-you have no idea the true implications of this post for epic personal irony and blistering schadenfreude. For YEARS my friend Pablo and I have joked whenever things go bad in our lives that we must be living on an ancient Indian burial ground. In laughing hysterics, we yell this conclusion to each other after we’ve ranted about the latest fucked up shit we’ve had fall on our respective heads. This concept is loosely based on the whole Poltergeist premise that weird things happen when your subdivision is built upon a defunct gravesite where the developers were too cheap to move the actual bodies. Our theory is that it is clearly only a matter of time before our TVs will swallow us whole and only after serious convincing will we be grudgingly ejected from our closets covered in Jell-O goo. Now factor in that it appears not only do I possibly live on a real motherfucking ancient first nation’s site but that I apparently need to kiss some spiritual ass. It truly doesn’t get any better than this, folks. A cosmic full-circle moment only achieved by the truly cursed. ***End of MRTL Style Tangent.

So this is what I am facing. I want to be supportive of my fellow tenants and help facilitate a positive and happy living situation for everyone. I am also very curious about what this ritual entails. Supposedly if I attend I will receive a personal cleansing package for my suite compliments of White Standing Buffalo, our Ghostbuster. With my health track record I could use all the help I can get. I do like the idea of a ‘house blessing’ and ‘spiritual housekeeping’ of sorts. But…

I truly do not know how I can possibly get through something like this, dignity intact and without offending pretty much everybody. You know the harder you try to contain the giggle the bigger and more uncontrollable the giggle gets? Please don’t make me have to hold anybody’s hands or drum or sing or oh-sweet-lord dance…

Dude. I’d better go clean my closet for when it vomits me out.

18 comments:

here today, gone tomorrow said...

I've used the old Indian burial plot thingy, too!! When I worked in Baltimore in a horrible job, I was always muttering that to anyone who asked about the latest crisis.

Oh, you SO have to go to this thing.

And I'll be very curious to hear if anything changes as a result.

Sharkey said...

I don't suppose they're holding it in the street outside your apartment so you can watch from your balcony and snicker from afar?

Susie said...

Ohmygod, I love you. I laughed through this whole thing, because I SO identify with this mindset. You're crazy as hell. Have you ever thought of becoming a therapist? I think the ability to both revere and ridicule is essential. heeee

And now, I thank you for giving me a new lead on just wtf WTF is. Going to dig up the damned Indians that are surely under my house...

Ern said...

You crack me up! But I think it's a sign of intelligence (no, seriously) to be able to consider all sides of something in such away that you can appreciate with reverence and also see the hilariousness of it all.

Annie Dillard wrote about church being like a dancing bear act, and that she often laughs the whole way home.

We humans are RIDICULOUS. And awesome.

Twisting Ivy said...

I too use humour in inappropriate settings. If I don't, I may just lose it. If you can't laugh at your pain, really... where does that leave you?

And yah, it really does sound as if your building may have pissed off some long-dead spirits. Hopefully they're also spirits with senses of humour. Good luck!

eclectic said...

You MUST attend, and you must be wearing full Vegas-Showgirl regalia, if you please. Because you won't be able to laugh audibly with the corset strings unbearably tight. Also, it's hard to make sotto-voce` comments with that darned 20-inch headdress. Wishing you fortune, and also luck with the whole closet-jello-vomit. ;)

operagal said...

eclectic, you forgot the de-rigeur 6-8 inch heels. That way, you can lean over laughing your ass off and everyone will assume you are just trying to maintain your balance!

kalki said...

All I know is you and Pablo need your own tv show. Cause you are funny and fabulous.

lawyerchik said...

Please go and take pictures and report back to those of us who will never experience..... :)

Squirl said...

Maybe you should wear the red couture gown to it. We do want a report, please.

mrtl said...

I love you, you hysterical thing, you.

Are you going to dress Yoshi in traditional garb for the festivities?

Circe said...

This is too funny! I would say skip this nonsense but this is so blogworthy that you cannot miss it. Actually, a v-log on this event would be even more appropriate. We'll be waiting for pics...
:)

east village idiot said...

At this point your apartment building needs all the help you can get. Go for it!

debutaunt said...

When I die, I have decided that I just want some marble bench set on Town Lake in Austin. I want to be cremated too. And then I want my friends to come and get shitty drunk or stoned and sit on my bench and sing horrible songs. You're welcome to sit in your red evening gown. Did I just read it was yer birthday??? Stomach bugs suck donkey balls! But happy birthday anyway, mamacita!!

Squirl said...

Happy Birthday! I'm so sorry the stomach flu came to celebrate it with you.

Karen said...

You have got to watch the British comedy called Coupling. There is this hilarious episode dealing with the compulsion to laugh at the wrong moment. They called it the Giggle Loop. Too funny!

Squirl said...

Toast? Are you still sick. Pissed off the spirits, didn't you?

Sometimes Saintly Nick said...

[:-)

One never knows what will happen at a ritual like that, do one? Remember the story of W. C. Fields, a militant agnostic, who was found reading the bible on his death bed and when asked what he was doing replied, “Just looking for loopholes.”