Hello, m! I miss you. I’m currently immersed in the world of bitter hormones and magazine-deadline-meeting. No worries, I’ll get through. And I’m glad to hear you’re on the mend. We hope.
Anyway – I’ve been meaning to record a few in-town observations. Unfortunately, none of these have been – ever can be? – photographed. Okay, I’m sure we’ll make it happen someday, now that I’ve said that. But for now imagine through words -
Billboards for Creepy Churches. I’m a firm believer that churches should never look like store fronts and should never, ever feature the pastor/preacher/reverend/head snake-handler’s face in ads, no matter how important they think they are. But whatever – I understand different things speak to different people, even if an 8x10-foot glossy ain’t for me. Except there’s this one sign. It’s a newer one. Reverend Creepy McCreeperson wears a green shirt, black suit jacket and bolo tie – which let’s be honest is the first red flag. His smile is slight and most definitely sinister. His chin is tucked, his eyes look up toward the camera. Kind of like my back-from-the-7th-circle-of-hell-aka-the-DMV picture? Except this guy’s still in the 7th circle of hell. He lives there. You can just tell. Not the DMV but the actual, flame-enveloped home of the devil. And he wants you to go to his church. No! I won’t do it! Now quit looking at me every time I drive by, Reverend Creepy.
Not much further down the road – I’d conjecture it was Reverend Creepy’s house, but let’s be honest, we all know he lives in a ginormous mansion somewhere, likely with a harem – is an average-sized brick home landscaped with some flowers on the side of the house. White flowers. Low to the ground. Uniform. Very, very uniform. Do you see where this is going yet? No? Okay – in the cooler months, they had red flowers out front, same variety. But only for a day or two, and then they were gone. Fleeting beauty. Except not really beautiful at all, because the flowers are fake. And they are outside. In the ground. Outdoor fake flowers. “Planted” in the dirt. They’re the plastic carnations people use to decorate gravestones. I am so not kidding. That is their landscaping. It’s what they do. Sometimes I think it must be an inside joke or a prank or irony, but we all know that’s my own optimism in its most sweetly naïve form. They mean those flowers, every last tacky fabric petal.
Third and last (for now – I have a feeling observations such as these will crop up regularly in my letters to you), we head back to my neighborhood. Remember the house we almost rented? The one with the finished basement that I still sort of love, with the yellow walls and the black-and-white tiled floor? The one where the owners decided at the last second to be giant dick-faces about the fact that we own dogs and proposed we put down roughly $10K in deposits before moving in? I’ve thought about taking the dogs for a walk and encouraging them to do their business in said homeowners’ yard, but I never did get around to it. I guess I’m not really that mean in practice. The daydream is better anyway. But we’ve walked by on occasion, noted that the homeowners have left and new people – renters, apparently, since a sale was never noted online – have moved in. (Please. You know I’m nosy and can’t help the follow-up spy work.) And I hope those renters are everything the homeowners dreamed them to be. I hope they don’t have dogs, and if they do, I hope they lock them in the unfinished portion of the basement as was proposed to us in deal-making. And I certainly hope they aren’t super-sketcho. The kind of people who, say, don’t appear to have children, but have made some use of the swing set out back. Not by swinging on the bench swing – obviously that would be normal, expected, desired. But by affixing a dried-out goat skull to the platform hideout at the top. The kind you’d see on a creepfest altar worshipping who-knows-what entity. The aforementioned Reverend Creepy, maybe. Yes. Hope they aren’t that kind of people at all.
And I hope your journeys lately have been just as magical as mine. Love to you –