Monday, November 8, 2010

Memories of Mephistopheles.

Just like a hairdo full of snakes.
Lately, when I look at my aloe vera--which has grown like gangbusters this year--I remember a party I had a couple years ago. During that party, I talked Abbie into feeling up this very same aloe, which was at that time, quite a bit smaller and rather sickly (because it wasn't getting enough sun and also because I'd left it outside to suffer the vagaries of the fall weather {I wasn't a very good succulent-keeper at that time in my life}). The sickliness was apparent in its sort of canned french green bean color, as well as the fact that the leaves were somewhat mushy. I'll be honest--they felt like corpse fingers. More precisely, like the fingers of a corpse that had been submerged in a slough...long enough to soak up a bunch of water and get all puffy without the water-soaked flesh just sort of slopping off the bones. So of course, this is why I'd pressured Abbie into giving my aloe's leaves a squeeze. It was gross, and duh, I wanted someone to share in that grossness. While I can't speak for Abbie exactly, I feel like she enjoyed it. I should mention that some wine had been consumed that evening. It was, after all, a party. An MFA party, to be exact. And those  practically guarantee the following things: snobby literary discussion, the name game (maybe sitting on the kitchen floor), hummus, tortilla chips, carrots, and wine. So much wine. And maybe a 40, depending on who's in attendance.

I have no desire to chew on this succulent.

So, Abbie and I stood in the office (which was the home of my unfortunate aloe {no longer, as you can see}) and grossed ourselves out. This memory always links to another memory from the same night, and I'm guessing, around the same time. Also in the office were a set of paper Victorian Halloween masks (purchased at a very cool Spokane thrift store {which no longer exists because its roof collapsed during the winter storms of 2008} for 95 cents each), tucked into the plastic panes of the cupboard doors.

The backs read: No. 5 Mephistopheles and No. 6 Lady Mephisto

Our friend, Luke came in and put on the Mephistopheles mask, and I have to admit that he looked pretty terrifying. It freaked me out. For a second or two, I thought maybe he was the Devil (OK, I know Mephistopheles isn't the Devil, at least, that's what my Goethe tells me) or rather a minor demon or imp. Looking at Luke in that mask...I probably almost lost my mind. The wine certainly didn't help.

I'm sure Abbie and I took a spin in the Lady Mephisto mask and drank our wine and squeezed the poor little aloe, but I don't remember that as vividly as I remember Luke strapping on the Mephistopheles mask and giving us a little smile. I wonder if Abbie ever thinks about this moment. I better get her an aloe vera plant as a reminder.

Oh, good God, no!
Also, you can see my eyeballs.

It just gets creepier and creepier. And has a blog post gone by where I don't use some form of the word creepy?

I didn't want to end on a picture of me in a flannel shirt and that mask, hence the picture of another item tucked into my office cupboard doors. Oh, masks, you're so chilling!

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