It's been too long since I've worn a tie. Today is an unpleasant special occasion though - the funeral of my coworker. Maybe at some point I'll tell about that, with detail & some authentic sorrow. Maybe. But I've got so much to catch up on that I feel like I'm weeks from commenting on today's events.
Today, I think about Agatha, a lot, I'm thinking about her right now.
Over the weekend we summoned the Spring.
Here's what I did. I made this potion at the height of summer. This potion... Okay - I guess I need even more exposition. Let's see. I was making green dye with plant material that I gathered, this was for a different project, a weird one, but... exposition. At the bottom of it all I'm kind of a weird guy. Up from that foundation I add on the palace of my Self - chambers and corridors. One of the rooms is a big one, it's the chamber of Trying Something. I'm best when I'm trying something and so I have a lot of space in this room. So I thought - I'll try to make a thing and it'll be a weird thing for a person, and it'll have green dye that I made (and also oils & perfumes) that I made, that I tried to make, that's the better version. But Trying Something. Anyhow the material got mixed the blender got defeated, the... stuff it got mixed up with yet more stuff and more and more- so I added to it over the summer, filling in with dandelion heads & tree buds and bits of eggshell - all the stuff you find. I mixed it in and consecrated it to Summer - because I can, what the fuck I can.
Anyhow, we decided we wanted to see Robins and to summon the Spring by dispensing the potion on the world.
Well - on the heroically proportioned tree stump out back.
When she was small, when she was learning to ride her bike - she did that when she was small, younger than you'd think, she picked up the bike really young - she'd get on her bike & before that her trike and I'd point out plants in the neighborhood and she'd ride over to get them. "The Burdock" I'd say. "The Neighbor's Daffodil." She'd ride over and pluck a few strands, get some amount, long grass, bundled leaves. She learned her bike & the flowers & the plants. Then I'd bind the whole thing together in a packet, tie it up in the long grass to make a little parcel and I'd call it a potion. Then we'd sing a little song about the springtime and I'd hide the potion in the milk-delivery cupboard. The metal door on the outside of the house that the milkman used to use, long ago. Rusted shut & painted over, but not a match for a few determined tugs.
So there's a precedent. After two very, very hard winters I decided we should make the potion again. We should try again. So this time we did it different - but still & also the same. Distilled summertime (and my-o-my did it have an alcoholic fermented reek). Pour out the potion & call for the Robin. That's the plan.
So a little ritual in the dead of winter. You can't be faulted for noticing like I have that's it's 55 degrees today.
The next day something kind of bad happened though. Happened to this kid.
Now this kid. She's a good sport. From small times she'd get excited & go along with whatever nonsense you'd come up with. "Let's make a potion about the springtime & do this ritual." And she'd go along, she'd be up for it - she'd go along with your master plan. Now, older & more introspective she's gotten tastes & preferences of her own, but can be cajoled good-Naturedly into Trying Something. Usually always. She's a Good Sport, and the one you want on your team. For a while she had a friend - her first real-good friend. V. V came by and wanted to try to learn the old DnD. She wouldn't go along, was stubborn & didn't really like having a good time. Very reserved that kid. Then she wanted to be a boy. Said everyone should call her another name. That was fine, and we went along - but V/T wasn't about to return the favor. Came to our party last March & kind of wussed out and made a scene about being offended by WhirlyBall? Somehow?
This kid, a sourpuss, is around. Now - her big sister is often present - and is a gem - everyone really likes older sister - a fine person with a lot of youthful character - a developed identity. Younger sister is really, really trying to distinguish herself. Himself. Part of this, it turns out, is rolling with like, older teen emo-goth squares and hanging out on the curb in my neighborhood. Now. Y'know, I get it, obviously I get teenaged alienation & adolescent affect.
I was talking about it to my 20-something goth pals and laughing about it - I pointed out, I was like, "If I were 25 I'd probably want to flex on those kids, tell them about the shows I'd been to, the capes I've had. Laugh at them for being poseurs." Which is actually what my 20-something pals did want to do! Which I found adorable - because... Well, if you don't get this, you're probably young yourself?
Anyhow, teen girl/transgender crypto-boy is... Around. And she and A used to be the best of friends and now she kind of pointedly ignores us walking down the street, and it makes Agatha sad. She was sad, broken up about it, thinking about it at dinner. How her teen-angst friend has traded her in for the Kids-In-The-Uniforms. The ones with the prefabricated mall-bought-tastes & the easy-to-access-fashion-palette.
I mean - this is her struggle. It's hers, but it's painful to see - real hard to face. Best I can do - because Narrative reality is the reality that's best to occupy. "You know, I can't think of a story where it's not the good-hearted-outsider who's the hero. What's the last time you read a story or thought of one where the hero was the conforming wannabe? The bandwagon-jumper?"
She might get it. She might understand. I just feel bad. On top of that - earlier that same day. And really I shouldn't just leave off with this - but her nerdy gamer pals - they all wanted, for no reason I can tell, to play Call of C'thulu -and the guy who really wanted to run it, he was typically terrible - "You can't do that, your character dies, you can't do that, this doesn't happen. Your character can't say that." Like - poorly bossy & lamely running. So she got let down on all sides by all her pals.
Maybe that's a useful formative day? I don't know.
Maybe pouring out the summer in the dead of winter just makes room for more winter.