Serving Daphne: Neat With a Twist


This afternoon, at precisely 4:38, I suppressed what would’ve been a noteworthy and somewhat startling chortle.
A certain meeting with a new design client rambled and meandered  on and on for, what seemed like, hours and hours, but turned out to be only HOURS. Daphne is opening a spa/salon in an isolated hamlet about twenty miles East of Raleigh. Her intent is that it be a den of complete indulgence: full and partial body massages, manicures and pedicures, mud baths, and copious glasses of red wine. Naturally, all activities will be framed within glamorous furnishings and trendy hues. (For example, one notion is to place four peacock-blue, leather and studded wingbacks around an ottoman covered in chartreuse velvet.)
I asked Daphne why she chose Lizard Lick to locate such a new undertaking. (Yep, skeptics, there is indeed a Lizard Lick! You might recall that there is also a towing company there, albeit now of Reality Show fame.) She looked at me squarely in the eyes and offered: “well, frankly the women out here need a place to drink!”
It was indeed a point well-taken. I started visualizing my sketches. We city folk understand far too well the importance of “libation stations” in this modern world of ours. The salon was merely a justification intended to stave off the naysayers, tee-totalers, and winged monkeys.

(Image: “HAY QUE REGAR EL JARDÍN” by Sergio Mora, 2013.)

Boarding a Ship of Fools





     “For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream.” (Vincent Van Gogh)
Yikes! Ever since I was indeed able to dream, to ponder the prompt of such a dream, and to savor its very definition, I have enjoyed dreaming alone, and in private. Almost anything, given both the ideal circumstance and appropriate mood, can evoke a daydream. Naturally, such a scenario has immediate antagonists: the annoying ringtone of the even more annoying bill collectors, recently labelled as “credit ambassadors”. I laugh at such outrageous proposition and cry at its absurdity. I imagine these twelfth hour recruits detect the folly of such missions.
     Yes, I am a dreamweaver, charged with a humble and diverse constituency here in the hinterlands. Some may resemble a former “humanity”, albeit the condition and not the grace. Some may be four-legged and blessed with a reassuring and occasionally disarming purr. Others may be the late night interloper joined by his merry and erstwhile band of scavengers and their resident graffiti poet laureate.
     Lastly, we have the unfortunate bird that longs for a precious Spring while regretting both his Autumnal fancies and the ghosts of summer. Burlington Birdie may sing for his supper, while the blushing cardinals and Jays bathe within reach. Huzzah. Such a preen is a bird’s obsessive “dressing for dinner” … perhaps for Little Lord Yorick or that feral Faucette major, Miss Claudja. Those two pusses adore the thrill of the hunt, the regalia of the capture, and the Friday feast of such a weekend bounty.
     Ahhh there is indeed theater here at Marklewood, my friends. I constantly search for just the right questions to satisfy my litany of scribbled answers. And soon those silly Marklewood pusses are perched in the sunroom windows, some a bit wary and overly cautious. Henry and I make eye contact, as we both survey the clutter and disarray, shake our heads, and cast the final details of our ever symbolic Friday night melodramas. In one of those unexpected shift of warbles, Henry is lulled into a late-night nap by the feisty mourning doves.
     And, after all the heady details of yet another Marklewood “Pussy Passion Play” have been confirmed, I am off to the garden to enjoy a few sips of iced coffee. Ssssshhh. Don’t let the others know that I’m surreptitiously sneaking out for a bit of birdwatching. Such an activity is verboten so I must find and then update the rules of behavior in such a dream.
     That having been done, I am off to ponder the vast treasures that were revealed when the Red Sea was once parted and a Ship of Fools became thus lodged and stranded. All wings, beaks, and tails report to the seaboard deck immediately!
     As my friend Karen reassures any and everyone at any point of the day or night: “It’s all good!” The pusses are set to study such a ship on such a night, like this one. And they know well to be prepared for the unexpected: Jon and I both have vivid dreams and will likely cast the cats …


(Image: “Newspaper Boat” by Mike Worrall, 2008-09.)