Wednesday, April 10, 2019

The Unusual Christening Gown

It's Sunday, and like in other Catholic churches over the world, it's time for the Christening of infants into the mother church. This is both a solemn and festive occasion. Infants of a few weeks are brought to the Baptistry to be sprinkled with holy water and be received into the Church! And the new members of the Holy Church are decked out in their splendid baptismal gowns: traditionally white; however, some highlights of color have recently begun to appear.

Father Devereaux, Pastor of St. Cletus's Parish, lately noticed white Christening gowns with trim in purple and gold or black and gold -- but mostly in the Fall. He thought "Tigers fan or Saints fan"; but it was okay since word did not reach the Archbishop of these departures from custom. He was willing to let it slide. And, besides, there is no canonical prescription as to what Christening gowns should be like.* 

After all, Fr. D. was quite willing to shift the time for the last mass to be at 11:45; all with the view of allowing late attendees to still get out in time for the Saints kickoff!

Well, one Sunday Father Devereaux got a bodacious surprise. One of the infant girls was decked out in a baptismal gown of green, silver, and black! Now this caused him consternation? Was this an underhanded way of getting Satanic practices to contaminate a most sacred ritual, or are they practitioners of Voodoo? No way to know; so he went ahead with the ritual, halfway expecting comeback from the Archdiocese. The fact that the proud Grandpa referred to her as "my little Iggle" unsettled him further. Was This some Satanic code word?

He asked Mycroft, aka The Lucky Dog Guy, what was it all about; but this encyclopedia of folklore was not able to answer. Likewise Madeline the Prophetess and Suzette the Existential Stripper all drew blanks.

So next day he asked his Baptist compadre, Brother Bob, what it's all about. Since this was a Potentially Serious Matter, they decamped to Uptown, far away from their congregations' locales and a place where they could get a bracing drink or two without censure from their congregationalists!

Bob, at first, was puzzled. Particularly over the meaning of the colors. But then it all became clear when the Good Padre Tim asked if the child being referred to as 'our little Iggle' meant something devilish.  Bob shook his head, and said, "You got a problem, Tim, but it's not a devil problem." And he told them what the problem was, and what team had those colors.

Tim said, "Oh well, it could be worse. They could have dressed her in Dallas Cowboys colors! That would have caused a scandal!"

*Supposedly, Baptism was performed in the early church on candidates who were stark naked as jaybirds; this may have had the effect of increasing attendance for this ceremony. Even today, some more exotic sects are said to do this as well.

[As an aside: why are jaybirds singled out as examples of nudity; only penguins dress up?



Monday, April 1, 2019

Oldie Songs for Making Out

The  1960's -- a distant era -- was a fertile period for songwriting. There was a plethora of genres that emerged during that time; folk rock, soft rock, and some songs with vile lyrics referred to as 'bubblegum music.' No, my friends, no link here. You're going to have to go that lonesome road by yourself.

By the mid-1960's, music lyrics became more lurid (or suggestive, to use the time-honored euphemism.) Anyway, here are two by Lou Christie (b. 1943) that further that theme.

1.  Oh my ever-lasting Gawd!* Here's Lightning Strikes, which implies that males willingly give into temptation when it come to lips begging to be kissed:





Okay, the message is clear: Don't sweat your b.f. being untrue if temptation crosses his path or if he seeks other opportunities. 

2.  Riding on the crest of Lightning Strikes, Lou Christie launched Phapsody in the Rain. Here he is performing it at a later date:




Originally, the lyrics included:


Baby, the raindrops play for me
Our lovely rhapsody, 'cause on our first date
We were makin' out in the rain.
And in this car, our love went much too far
It was exciting as thunder
Tonight I wonder, where you are?
MGM insisted on a re-recorded version that toned down the lyrical content. Corporate prudes! The third and fourth lines were changed to:
We fell in love in the rain
And in this car, love came like a falling star

I think you might get the idea. Anyway, I thought you would enjoy this excursion into old-time make-out music.**

*I figure this one is worth three Hail Marys. And I don't mean a distant shot from behind the half court line.

**I turned in my V-card at 18; and am a mom now.



Thursday, November 1, 2018

Detention in Heaven

November 1st is, among Louisianans, All Saints' Day: the day in which they honor less-important saints not prominent enough to merit their own feast days or having any Heavenly Pull. It's a high Holy Day; and it's also the day to spruce up the graves of loved ones in preparation for All Souls' Day (November 2). Lousianans are given to piety sometimes; but we don't overdo it.

But in Heaven November 1st it takes on a different twist: this is the day in which all of the guardian angels that fell asleep on the job the day before spend the day in Angel Detention because of their failures in proper supervision of their mortals. Yes, Heaven is a place of bliss; but sometimes the bliss is a little thin, if you know what I mean. Anyway, let us look into that dismal scene:

Here is Angel Second Class Melanie, who helped the human she supposedly watched over as she  toilet papered the whole neighborhood. Lazy Melanie! She helped paper the Jones's house, herself.

And Angel Third Class Marie, dressed provocatively as a pirate. Her human scandalized everyone her costume the previous night. And Marie's timbers got shivered also.

Angel Third Class Tom managed to get drunk with his human, and was still sleeping it off. This is the best way to cope with a celestial detention.

Angel First Class Matt's human was a preacher who dared to have a Halloween party at the church rec room, as opposed to a Fall Festival as the Godly would prefer they be called nowadays. Matt's human was almost stricken from fellowship, but he had taken several of the deacons to lunch at Hooters' last month and they did not wish to curtail those pleasures.

Archangel William was sent to detention for keeping bad companionship. It's a crying shame when your human is a member of the U.S. Senate. He was said to mutter, "I worked so hard to become an archangel and this is the assignment I get?"

Poor Apprentice Angel Steve: he participated in igniting fires in several garbage cans.

Angel Second Class Jennifer and her human put laundry detergent in the fountain and it foamed for days.

Archangel Mickey got clemency because he was unfortunate enough to draw an aspirant Presidential candidate as his human. Archangel Gabriel's view was, "This poor snook has suffered enough by listening to all the speeches."

Angel Third Class Cecilia ran an old blouse up a flagpole. Her human behaved even more poorly.

Righteous Archangel Clara came to detention wearing Mardi Gras beads; she was sent there for "causing a scandal."

Hollywood Angel Second Class Lindsay made the clubs for a solid week without requiring a washing of her lingerie hamper.

But by far, the harshest detention punishment was meted out to Angel First Class Scott, whose human slipped the Straight and Narrow, and passed out religious tracts decrying Halloween instead of the candy and other treats given by the righteous. While in this angelic detention, he was treated as a pariah!


Wednesday, October 31, 2018

The War on Halloween?

Well, nuts!

The Grinches are at it again. 

Their latest foray comes from Chesapeake, VA which passed a law restricting trick-or-treating to those 12 or younger. Will this mean that a 14- or 16- or 18-year old could be cited for trick-or-treating?

What is frigging WRONG with people? Let's face it: the news sucks. Politics sucks. Religion has let us down. Even sports has gotten too serious. (Still, I liked the Series.)

What harm is it for teens to want to have trick-or-treating fun?  Let's hope Chesapeake is not a harbinger of a trend. 

Maybe FOX News can do a series on War on Halloween. No, wait -- we already have idiots passing out tracts instead of candy. And schools having Fall Festivals instead of Halloween Parties.

Truth: I trick-or-treated until I was 18 or 19. Yes, and with my friends. And my Mama was fine with my costumes. (Yes, I did Lum twice -- in tiger skin bikini. Temps were in low- 70s at night)

Oh, New Orleans is a party town and people go all out for Halloween. Like a mini-Mardi Gras in late October. New Year's Eve also rocks in the Quarter.








Good witches protect trick-or-treaters from goblins.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Louis Wain's Cats

Artist Louis Wain (1860-1937) specialized in cat pictures as a genre; some of his illustrations featured cute cats doing typically human things; others verged on the abstract or even bizarre.

He suffered from schizophrenic disorder later in life; and was institutionalized. Also, he had lost his well-loved wife at an early age. In general, he had a sad life.

This one is cuddly cute:


This one is highly abstract; and verges on the bizarre.

I like his use of the patterned background; like it incorporates an Asian influence in his art:


This kitty can be seen either as whimsical or puzzled:


And what is more normal than a group of cats napping together:


There is a bit of question about Louis Wain's work.  Walter Maclay, a psychiatrist, wrote that his depiction of cats from the typically cute ones to the abstract mirrored is descent into schizophrenia. However, there is little evidence to document this consistent progression from the realistic to the bizarre followed any consistency. Louis Wain did not date his illustrations.  Alternatively, Louis Wain might have simply been experimenting with new approaches on the feline theme. After all, his abstract, geometric works have a consistency to them. Also, he was drawing at a time when boundaries in painting shifted from the concrete to the surrealistic or even bizarre.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

The Action News Team Celebrates No Bra Day

Recently Hello Giggles listed seven commandments of not wearing a bra in public.  These include such common sense suggestions as not wearing itchy material, avoiding animals with claws, being careful of how shoulder bags hang across your chest, not being envious of someone else's apparently better endowment, and so forth.

Missy Chauvin thought that she would adopt this daring look for National No Bra Day (Oct. 13th). Besides, she had an eye on television ratings and, while Action News was tops in the New Orleans Metro Area, they had to keep up with the competition continually.

However, she did not share this crafty plan with the news anchor Al Gautreaux or weather person Sharon Rideaux or with the Program Director Vickie Connelly. You can call this the Semi-big October Surprise.

Anyway, she wore her jacket on set and took it off as she seated herself at the news desk. This was despite the fact that the set is normally cool!

And, as the cameraman panned across the set, there was TAA-TAA! Something not ever seen before on Action News. Actually, FOUR things.

It seemed that Sharon, the weather reporter, also decided to celebrate National No Bra Day!

Missy was irritated that Sharon stole some of her thunder. And it showed.

Al, as news anchor, got into the spirit of things, and ad libbed a few double entendres:

"Missy, what bumps stand in the way of the Saints' progress? "

"Sharon, is the weather likely to be a little nippy tomorrow morning?" [Said in New Orleans in October; very unlikely!]

"At 11:30 tonight, we'll carry another episode of Twin Peaks. In the meantime, here's an interview we can get a rise from."

But, at least, Missy consoled herself, hers were not cattywampus like Sharon's!


(After all, who wants to prove she's not wearing a bra by holding up a dull white one?)

Monday, October 8, 2018

A New Book Cover for a Classic

What if the editor at a book publisher took things too literally?