Socialism, BC-style

Enter the doors of perception

Enter the doors of perception

Let me tell you a story. A story of hippies. Of social workers. Of hockey equipment.

And yes, of mushrooms.

It happened this way: in fact, this is the very way it happened or if it isn’t somebody was lying to me when they told me this story and since I heard it from the social worker, not the hippie, I’m inclined to go out on a limb and believe her.

Besides, the life of a social worker is generally much more interesting around these parts than most people would think.

So my friend, Carinthia (of whom we have blogged previously in this very blog) was working as a social worker on the Mount Currie reservation near Pemberton, BC. This was a very long time ago, you understand. The internal combustion engine had been invented, but I’m not sure that sex or the internet had.

Hippies had. Been invented; they hadn’t been on the internet or, to my knowledge, had sex yet, because you know how hippies are: they talk a good game, but they smell so bad nobody will go near them. No, I have this on good authority and whoever told them that you could cover up BO with patchouli has a great deal for which to answer, you bet your sweet bippy you goddam hippie.


One day my friend Carinthia is in a bar which is not saying much if you know Carinthia and although you may have been reading this blog a  very long time I’m not sure that you’ve ever been properly introduced. Because I’m reasonably sure she doesn’t read it which can you blame her? Particularly at times like this, eh?

And next to her is this hippie. Mister Hippie and she fall into conversation, as one does, for indeed it’s one of the very things people go to bars for because they can get the booze at the liquor store if that’s all they want.

And way cheaper it is, too.

And Mister Hippie (or it might have been Master Hippie, not that they have a hierarchy really, I mean I really have no idea if he was over 18 or wore long pants or, indeed, any at all because they’re kind of relaxed about that sort of thing in BC especially in the vicinity of hot tubs, although I believe this particular amenity was absent from that bar but hoo boy would it ever up the friendliness to sit and stew in a big seething cauldron of People Soup while a friendly barkeep brings you drinks and excuse me, I think I sense a business opportunity and besides, where was I?) asked what she did, and Carinthia said she ran the children’s programs at the community centre.

Which is how we spell it in Canada, because we just gotta be that way.

And she, all polite-like, asks him what he does, although being a hippie is apparently very time-consuming and most of them, in fact, never do anything else besides being hippies, but this one does. He reaches into his pocket (no, that’s not what he does for a living, except in a very large sense, and you’ll see if you keep reading) and pulls out…

a mushroom.

Mushrooms by Kats Elixir

Mushrooms by Kats Elixir

One of THOSE mushrooms.

And he needs to explain to her just what THOSE mushrooms are. He drives up from California, buying mushrooms all the way, and when his van (yes, a VW van, naturellement) is full he drives across to Chicago and New York and sells them there. Then he starts the circle all over again, and this is how he makes his living: as a traveling mushroom salesman.

How entrepreneurial.

But not as entrepreneurial as Carinthia, for she instantly asks, “and is that a good living?” and apparently yes, it is a very good living indeed, particular as, being a hippie, he doesn’t have expenses such as shampoo or razors or soap, and patchouli is really very cheap if you buy it in bulk. And she picks up the mushroom and asks how much he pays for mushrooms like this.

And it is apparently a very, very interesting number, for Carinthia asks him if she can keep it as a souvenir and if he’ll be in the bar again tomorrow night, buying, and the answers to all of the above are Yes and off she goes.

Cut to the next day at the community centre, and open on an extreme closeup of Carinthia addressing the assembled children of the tribe. Pull back until we can see that in each of her hands is a big green garbage bag.

“Do you see this mushroom, kids? Look very carefully. Now I want you to fill these bags with mushrooms exactly like this. Not any other kind, just this kind. Do you think you can do that for me?”

And of course they could, and that is how they got all new baseball and hockey equipment for the community centre.


Avatars of Feminine Power: Bad Role Models

Endora was the shizznit and don't you even TRY to say different or I'll turn you into a newt. A special-needs newt

Endora was the shizznit and don't you even TRY to say different or I'll turn you into a newt. A special-needs newt

One of an ongoing series featuring Angie Dickinson, Suzanne Pleshette, Catherine Deneuve, Catwoman, Britney Spears, Mylene Farmer, Vanessa Paradis, an Iraqi police woman in training, Rembrandt’s Pallas Athena, Barbie, and now, Endora from Bewitched.

I always wanted to grow up to be her, and I think I may have finally succeeded. Now to get my hands on that wardrobe!

Pucci Galore!

What I like about her is…seriously, everything. I even dyed my hair red for a couple of years! She takes no prisoners, takes no shit, takes names and kicks ass, and she was right: her daughter married a total dork. Derwood was a feeb. I’m sorry, all you Derwoods or Darvins or Dickwads or Whatevers out there, but you’re just not good enough and it would be cruel to let you go through life in a fog of self-delusion, correct?

Endora would NEVER stoop to psychoactives. Other than Martinis, of course

Endora would NEVER stoop to psychoactives. Other than Martinis, of course

Do you know the Sedona Method? Its aim is to give insecure, dweebish people a feeling of accomplishment. Regardless of whether or not they have, in fact, accomplished anything.

You can see why Endora and I would have a problem with that, yes? [clue for Derwoods: say Yes]

So, from Endora I have taken my vociferous contempt for the inferior, my belief that if one is magical enough one can get away with anything, and my taste for earrings of true splendiferositude.

Endora enjoys Champagne mainly on the plane over Spain

Endora enjoys Champagne mainly on the plane over Spain

Endora and me: can we help it if we're fabulous?

Endora and me: can we help it if we're fabulous?

Greaser’s Palace: my next must-see DVD

Greasers Palace

A Sixties stoner cowboy movie about Jesus: why not, eh?

Apparently the DVD of Greaser’s Palace exists, but only as a rare (and, thus, overpriced) collectable. But I must have it; the Youtubes and online references are simply too tantalizing. Don’t believe me? Check it out:

And a review from

You are probably thinking to yourself, “It couldn’t be that outlandish. Could it?” Go and look up “naive” in the dictionary. Now.

The entire movie is an anecdote [I think he means “allegory”] for religion, Christianity to be precise… Greaser’s Palace is a huge saloon in some tumbleweed town out west… Seaweedhead Greaser is the Catholic Church as represented by a gunslinger with itchy trigger fingers. Why in the world does he have a mariachi band and his mother locked in wooden cages? The musicians are easy to explain; they provide entertainment while Greaser tries to have bowel movements (which he is unable to do)…

Right from the start it is evident that Greaser hates Lamy Homo (pronounced as “lay me homo”). He shoots, stabs, and even dumps the little guy down a well. The Church’s efforts to eradicate his homo problem are to no avail; Jessy keeps bringing the reluctant Lazarus back. Lamy consistently recites the same story upon his return from the other side and it’s a trip. Readers old enough to remember when Puff relaxed immigration laws and all those runny noses invaded Honah-Lee (Honalee? Hon-a-lee? Who knows?) might identify with me. It’s that weird.

Any movie about Western religion would be incomplete without Martin Luther; so where is he? He is the man trying to perform a card trick for Seaweedhead. Check it out, the would-be magician does the old “pick a card, any card” bit. He then holds up card after card, inquiring “This one? How about this one? That one?” Poor Martin Luther, trying in vain to decide which interpretation is correct. History says the man finally gave up and just wrote something to the effect of “Figure it out for yourself!” Then he went to get a hammer and nails, but I’m getting sidetracked.

Not at all, not at all. It makes SO MUCH SENSE now. If only I’d seen this movie before I took all those Religious Studies courses at University!

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The Carol Channing Christmas Message

What’s the difference, really, between one old Queen and another?

Which reminds me, in fact, of the time (I was not there, you understand, I heard it later, she wasn’t talking to me by that time) the Queen Mum phoned down to her butler’s switchboard or staff room or whatever it was and asked, “Would one of you old queens please bring this old Queen a large gin and tonic?”

Souls Mobile – Live | Fearless City

Here is the live streaming video from Mobile Souls at the Parade of Lost Souls. No idea if this UStream video will work, but what the hell, I’ll give it a shot.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Souls Mobile – Live | Fearless City“, posted with vodpod

UPDATE: okay, screw that. Go here on Fearless for the actual streaming video we remixed for Mobile Souls, plus the Digital Shrine video immediately below.