March 23rd, 2000
Loki. The Raven of the Pacific Northwest Native American tales. Coyote, of the Southwest Native American lore. The Fool of the Tarot, Elegba of the Yoruba, Br'er Rabbit, Pombagira of Brazil. [and thanks to Starhawk, in "Spiral Dance" for help with the research]
Tricksters all, the summation and animation of the fact that the fucking physical universe in all of its blessings and joys plays practical jokes, acts of whimsy, random change and erratic occurrence, just for our entertainment.
Sometimes it just seems like Heinlein was right when he spoke of the two primary departments of the government. One, I paraphrase from his "Glory Road" novel, is the Fairy Godmother Department. One little old lady sits there, rocking in her chair, and on rare occasion puts down her knitting and reaches out and does something nice for you - your lost luggage shows up at your hotel before your vacation is over. The other department, much larger and more active, is the Practical Joke Department. This is the department that handles such things as going to Germany for a nice quiet European tour in the Army, and as you arrive there finding out that your new unit has just been activated for a year in the rice paddies of Vietnam, or suchlike.
So, after all the stresses I've been writing about at my Other Job, I put some time yesterday into dressing nice and non-threatening, slacks and a sport shirt which cover all my tat's and most of my piercings. A co-worker stopped by to pick me up, as my car is still getting it's new rebuilt trannie installed. I gave her directions from my house directly to the nearest espresso stand, in the local grocery store. Espresso being aqua vitae and in Seattle as mandatory as breathing. I got my usual 20 oz double Americano, no room for cream just the caffeine thanks. Also got her her ... if can remember it right ... tall double breve latte extra vanilla [I had to sing it in a ditty all the way into the store just to remember what she wanted]. Got them, steaming hot, came back out to her truck, sat them on the dash in their cardboard carrying case, reached to fasten my seat belt, and damned if she didn't let the clutch out and the drinks both went airborne, lost their lids, and before I could get out my first scream of agony, I was solid steaming hot caffeine from nipples to ankle. Arching up off the now saturated and steaming hot seat, she and I both grabbing parts of my clothes to hold away from my body, fought off the seat belt and door and got to my feet in the parking lot in pain. In a few minutes we realized that I was only superficially burned [no blisters] and we turned around and headed back to my place.
I changed clothes - just into ordinary scrubs - while she called work to say we'd be late. It's the first time I've had a co-worker from that Other Job in my home. Remember a few days ago when I was talking about how comfortable it is to be an adult with adult kids and to have my home the way I want it to be? This is where there's the possibility for discomfort. Fortunately, she's seen a sling before, she said, and shrugged it off. For the rest - hang on... ok, just went in and glanced around the play space next to the kitchen and here's the first half dozen or so items I saw [where she was standing to make that phone call to work]:
64oz party size pump bottle of lube
garden weasel with 4' handle and six wheels
3 extension cords
box of 72 shabbat candles
steel machete and 4 nerf bats
4 scalpels and a tuning fork
US Army WWII issue hand crank field telephone
Chances are I won't be baby-sitting her 8 month old daughter here without a SIGNIFICANT baby-proofing of the domicile.
So, that was the Trickster's start to my last 12 hour shift of the week. Got home this morn and the toolbelt guys are here. Three hours after arriving I now have a cable modem, and the first test of the connection speed is in excess of 6XXk. Wheeeeeeeee!
My belly is a tad bit burned, but I have a dependable net access. Life nets out good.
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