Myth Of The Day: Sunshowers and Fox Weddings

A rain shower during sunshine, which many cultures call “the devil’s rain” or “the devil beating his wife,” is known in Japan as “the fox’s bride going to her husband’s house.”

It is not only a myth told and retold, but a yearly seasonal ritual ceremony that happens every October, even still.

Once upon a time there was a young white fox, whose name was Fukuyémon. When he had reached the fitting age, he shaved off his forelock and began to think of taking to himself a beautiful bride. The old fox, his father, resolved to give up his inheritance to his son, and retired into private life; so the young fox, in gratitude for this, laboured hard and earnestly to increase his patrimony. Now it happened that in a famous old family of foxes there was a beautiful young lady-fox, with such lovely fur that the fame of her jewel-like charms was spread far and wide. The young white fox, who had heard of this, was bent on making her his wife, and a meeting was arranged between them. There was not a fault to be found on either side; so the preliminaries were settled, and the wedding presents sent from the bridegroom to the bride’s house, with congratulatory speeches from the messenger, which were duly acknowledged by the person deputed to receive the gifts; the bearers, of course, received the customary fee in copper cash.

When the ceremonies had been concluded, an auspicious day was chosen for the bride to go to her husband’s house, and she was carried off in solemn procession during a shower of rain, the sun shining all the while.* After the ceremonies of drinking wine had been gone through, the bride changed her dress, and the wedding was concluded, without let or hindrance, amid singing and dancing and merry-making.

The bride and bridegroom lived lovingly together, and a litter of little foxes were born to them, to the great joy of the old grandsire, who treated the little cubs as tenderly as if they had been butterflies or flowers. “They’re the very image of their old grandfather,” said he, as proud as possible. “As for medicine, bless them, they’re so healthy that they’ll never need a copper coin’s worth!”

As soon as they were old enough, they were carried off to the temple of Inari Sama, the patron saint of foxes, and the old grand-parents prayed that they might be delivered from dogs and all the other ills to which fox flesh is heir.

In this way the white fox by degrees waxed old and prosperous, and his children, year by year, became more and more numerous around him; so that, happy in his family and his business, every recurring spring brought him fresh cause for joy.

(From Tales of Old Japan, by Algernon Bertram Freeman-Mitford.)

Sunday after the omelettes and before the music…

New friends and old ones newly met are mirrors as much as input mechanisms. They serve to remind us who we are and where wish we were headed. 

A sort of course correction in the journey. And of course we do the same for them. And somewhere in the exchange, we each add a little bit more to our collective portfolio of experience  from each side of the equation. Gender rules and social norms be damned, by the way. I need no one’s permission to associate.

For those who might express concern or dismay at my Magdalen ways.

I am raising my children to be worthwhile human beings, but also worthwhile companions. Or so I hope to achieve. Rich input.

Interesting people and places and things. Sights and sounds. Shared jokes and observations. I think I am likely raising the ultimate well rounded hipster nerd queens in waiting.

Such a fucking hipster am I, myself, with my burgundy plaid and velvet slippers, leather jacket and Dr. Who scarf and shredded skinny jeans.

I am writing this on a typewriter app on my iPad right now is how hipster I am.

…And listening to vintage punk and New Wave tracks on Spotify. Mission of Burma and Johnny Thunders and The Nerves, The Waterboys, The Buzzcokcs, etc.

Rich input on a lazy Sunday, good food and old bookstores, family, friends, and songs to be sung until we are breathless and dizzy and full of hope.

La Loteria…

I’ve just randomly discovered that those eerie images one sees on Downtown area folkart matchbooks and wooden ladder games does indeed have a history…You know, the images of “The Mermaid” and “El Diablo” and “El Corazon?” The official name is Loteria and it’s yet another example of wild and uncultivated mythology echoing Appalachian English Folk Songs or the African pantheons in Santeria

Loteria is one among many semi-ancient traditions still alive in Mexico by way of long journeys through history, migration and traditional lore. It is part Tarot, part “bingo” game and part esoteric mystery cult. The cards are the symbolic answers to riddles or rather the question to each answer, like a Jeapordy game hosted by the Sphynx…

A guide to Loteria Riddles
Examples:
“The Blanket of the Poor” equals The Sun
“He that sang to St. Peter will not return to sing again” is The Rooster

There’s not a lot out on the web re the deeper meaning of all this, but being who I am I am of course about to go all Robert Graves on it and traverse the wilds of the electronic frontier to delve into the history and meaning of it all. Armchair Mythologists of the world unite and take over…

..

Currently listening :
In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
By Neutral Milk Hotel
Release date: 1998-02-10

La Loteria…

I’ve just randomly discovered that those eerie images one sees on Downtown area folkart matchbooks and wooden ladder games does indeed have a history…You know, the images of “The Mermaid” and “El Diablo” and “El Corazon?” The official name is Loteria and it’s yet another example of wild and uncultivated mythology echoing Appalachian English Folk Songs or the African pantheons in Santeria

Loteria is one among many semi-ancient traditions still alive in Mexico by way of long journeys through history, migration and traditional lore. It is part Tarot, part “bingo” game and part esoteric mystery cult. The cards are the symbolic answers to riddles or rather the question to each answer, like a Jeapordy game hosted by the Sphynx…

A guide to Loteria Riddles
Examples:
“The Blanket of the Poor” equals The Sun
“He that sang to St. Peter will not return to sing again” is The Rooster

There’s not a lot out on the web re the deeper meaning of all this, but being who I am I am of course about to go all Robert Graves on it and traverse the wilds of the electronic frontier to delve into the history and meaning of it all. Armchair Mythologists of the world unite and take over…

..

Currently listening :
In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
By Neutral Milk Hotel
Release date: 1998-02-10

Cliffhanger

I am inexplicably queasy this morning. End of summer migraine weirdness. It is a Monday in August of a year in which our cultural and societal debt is being referred to third party collections and our planet is on the verge of being repossessed by the forces of nature. It’s a scary time to be alive, I guess. Yet somehow we persist. Maybe out of a desire to see what happens next. How can we possibly get ourselves out of this mess. Tune in next week to see…

Detritus: Giant sucking noise that is poverty edition…

As most of you well know, from recent or current experience, poverty sucks! Because once you’re down, my loves, they keep kicking you, is pretty much how it goes, or whatever. Things that suck the most:

1)The people who are most patient with you and therefore most deserving will invariably get paid last and latest because you are forced to deal first with those who threaten to sue you, take your kids away, cut off your utilities, etc.

2)It’s more expensive to be poor than middle class. Duh, that’s how they keep you there. Raise your hands all ye who in the past year have run out of gas due to only filling the tank $5 at a time or had your phone service shut off or gathered enough spare change from around your house for a dollar burger at McDonalds only to come up three cents short. Bonus points if you still have a checking account and have had your entire paycheck eaten by bank fees or have had to go to the emergency room due to lack of health insurance lately. There is an undeclared tax on poverty and once you’re down it’s all but impossible not to stay there.

3)People who are not in your boat can be judgemental pricks, like poverty needs to be punished or something. Favorite examples of this are the following:

“You go out too much. I bet you could save a lot of money by not going out.”

In actuality, I go “out” only every couple of weeks or so and never pay more than about $3 – $6 to get in. I don’t drink when I’m there. I don’t rent movies the rest of the week. I don’t buy beer. I don’t spend any money on grooming products beyond $1 bottles of shampoo and toothpaste, I spend maybe $20 or so per year on clothes at thrift stores and that’s it. Don’t begrudge me my small entertainments because you think all poor people should suffer or all things worth doing involve drinking/vast expenditures of cash.

“You need to drop your cable because poor people can’t afford cable”

My boyfriend has cable. He now lives in my home and pays for the cable here that he would have had elsewhere. He is not responsible for my bills and has in spite of this has helped me out a great deal monetarily, in addition to helping me squeak by each month with his share of the rent and other bills. I’m not going to respond to his help by demanding that he drop his cable and give me the money for it. Ditto anyone who demands I settle outstanding amounts owed by “just borrowing the money from him” like he’s the bank of my misfortune and like he hasn’t already put off his dog’s $1600 operation to keep me from going without groceries ot child care money. And double fuck you bonus points to anyone who suggested putting the dog to sleep and then borrowing the money(more than one person, I shite you not.)

“If you just budget wisely, you’ll have money.”

Hmmm…nothing divided by seven days a week still equals…nothing. I’m not fucking frittering the funds away, I never made them in the first place. I am poor because I was fucking living hand to mouth and then got divorced and have to support myself and half the expenses of my kids on clerical wages and deal with the stupid ass financial disasters I inherited upon the breakup. Let he who is without sin cast the first aspersion and tell me how I can cut my expenses by cutting out my $6 a month entertainment budget.

“Please call back 1-800-unlastnamedcollectionserf at extension 456897 regarding a very important business matter.”
Yeah, I’m so right on that. Like you could ruin my credit worse. Get the fuck in line for gettng blood out of this particular turnip.

I just have to pray that it will get better. Happy with my job, my relationship and my kids. Make enough to pay my basic bills except what I owe retroactively. Not as likely to off myself as previously. Nor as likely to lose my sanity. Just got to make it through this last little bout of fuckedness. Karma will catch up to me someday, right?

“The punk rock’ll kill you if the government don’t get you first…”)
-Rhett Miller of The Old 97s

So, I’m in the running for a door cashier gig at Club Congress…

Who would ever have guessed someday I’d have a job interview that included the question “How would you describe The Sweat Band to someone who’d never heard them?”
Or that I’d get a chance to interview with a real live Sand Ruby?
Oh, the glamourness of my life…

“The punk rock’ll kill you if the government don’t get you first…”
-Rhett Miller of The Old 97s

So, I’m in the running for a door cashier gig at Club Congress…

Who would ever have guessed someday I’d have a job interview that included the question “How would you describe The Sweat Band to someone who’d never heard them?”
Or that I’d get a chance to interview with a real live Sand Ruby?
Oh, the glamourness of my life…

“The punk rock’ll kill you if the government don’t get you first…”
-Rhett Miller of The Old 97s