Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Honk! if you love sun bonnets

Last we spoke, I was listening to our house go clanking in the wind.  In this very office! Right behind me! Our wind speedometer was clocking 48 mph.  And that sound seemed a likely fit to such velocity.  I spotted siding skipping across our field.  "Poor Shmuck," I generously thought, "The siding, my friend, is blowing in the wind... Ah... glad it's not me."  But wait, what had that crackling clanging sound behind be been all morning?  I wrapped myself in coat-age and sure 'nuff, lo and behold, I was the poor schmuck.  Huck was home in minutes screwing it all back on.  It now looks... um.... interesting.

The steel siding is not one of my favorite features of this house.  Sure, you never have to paint your house again, you just have to tack it back on every month.  And I LOVE changing house colors.  If you need a new paint job, might as well try something new, eh.  Can't do that with this shit.  And THEY (those schmucks who make the crap) KNOW this it is all wrong... why the faux wood swirls?  

The silver lining on this cloud of siding is that I finally saw the house beneath the house, the true wood, and baby, they don't make wood like that any more.  Solid.  Solid.  Solid.  It was a relief.  The house is far from plumb, and I always wonder, laying in bed at night, all that empty space between me and the ground, and the floor beneath me at a 6% grade.  Am I safe?  Am I secure?  Can I go back to sleep now?  Apparently, the experts have told me, that solid does not equal plumb and the two need not co-exist.  Phew.

And, since you asked, Honk!fest was a delight.  The first day we brought the kids.  Jaws dropped, open mouthed they stared at the crazy musicians, the dancers, the acrobats, the stilt walkers.   After 30 minutes of stunned silence Blue stated, "I.  Love.  Seattle."  And we realized it had been too long since we'd last been part of such freakishness.  Spokane, Wenatchee, Pullman: they all have sun and no traffic (yeah), but very few uber-creative weirdos (boo!).

As we rolled out of the car into Fremont, Huck changed into his band jacket and other exciting accessories.  I packed a bevy of costuming as well.  Striped tights, fishnets, leopard print leggings, hot pink shirts, black lace slips and bodices, all the freakish regalia.  At the moment that we arrived, I was really feeling my brown courderoys and brown jacket, my mini-UPS uniform that I wear way too much.  Blue was so disappointed in me.  She was begging and begging for me to put onsomething, anything! more interesting.  Even just the wool coat I bought off a Soviet sailer in Red Square for five bucks in '92.  Perhaps it was the long drive that made me snap, but snap I did,  "Excuse ME, missy!  But I am me and only I get to decide what I wear.  It depends on MY feelings, NOT yours."  Guess how long it took to get THAT one thrown back in my face?

We left the kids with Grandpa for Saturday night.  I did wear my Soviet Sailor's coat and my green feathered mask.  I bailed on the other stuff.  1) too cold, 2) it was the UNIFORM!  Every single girl there was wearing striped socks over fishnets and topped with a tutu.  It made a statement, alright.  But in some circumstances, such as Honk!fest, the statement was sort of the opposite of intended, not an expression of a unique self, but an expression of conformity.  (photo of the ibone)

It was the "After Party!"  that I loved the most.  The dancing in the streets, yippee.  The music, yum!  The costumes: an over-all thumbs up.  The Stanford Wacko band, awesome.  But being picked up by Huck's friend in his retooled, post-industrial limousine: SUPER SPIFFY!  He brought us to a warehouse, a hazard factory, filled with fork lifts, power tools,  table saws, those huge metal containers of flammables, and about 500 people shoulder to shoulder, attempting to dance to yet MORE street band music. It was dangerous!  It was totally against code.  A bar.  Pizza heating on a bunson burner or it's giant equivalent.  Tattoo's in the corner.  And outside, this was the topper.  Outside: a flaming tether ball game.  Yes!  FLAMING!  While old footage from around the world projected on a shipping container behind it.  It was lovely, inspite of being a "scene".  People there to see and be seen.  I was seen.  I saw.  I was also impressed with all of the checks and balances preventing people who were incapable of driving from doing so.  They even checked ID!  It was like a very responsible dangerous party, technically illegal yet within the spirit of the laws intended for safety. 

We also made some familial visits and I visited one friend from seven years ago and our children were grown, be we were just the same.  And it's always nice to remember exactly why you hung out with someone way back then.  'Cuz they're awesome, that's why.  But I had to bail on other awesome friends: time ran out.  And even so we barely got back before Monday which came fast and hard and no one made it anywhere sooner than an hour late.  And Blue chose to wear to school: a prom style dress covered in a pink knitted shawl and the sun bonnet made by her great great grandmother.  Yes.  A sun bonnet.  And I said, "Honey, are you sure you want to wear that thing to school?"  And guess what she said?!  And I said, "I guess I have to understand what you're talking about."

And there were consequences, yes.  But only about half the students made fun of her.  Her trip to Seattle to the freak show seemed to uplifted her courage however, and seemed to give her confidence and hope that some day, yes, some day, she too might find her tribe.  Somewhere on this earth, she now knows, are people who wear whatever the hell they want. She is Blue and only SHE gets to decide what she wants to wear and the rest of them, can shut their stupid, ignorant mouths.  At least that's what she told me she told them.

oh, god, what have I wrought?

1 comment:

  1. I'm really enjoying your blog and I loved this post! Blue's outfit sounded awesome. River went to school once in a tie-dyed shirt and a faux coon skin cap. He was so stinkin proud of that hat, I couldn't say no.



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