Saturday, June 26, 2010
I Live In Wonderland
Well, if I were to begin at the beginning, as The King of Hearts might say, I would have to start by explaining that I might just live in Wonderland, and that this probably started the day I turned two years old.
My Fall Down The Rabbit Hole
You see, on my second birthday after the celebrating, I was put to bed in my crib and the rest of my family carried on with whatever they planned that night – for my brother and sister, this happened to be watching a movie in the basement. Perhaps I was bored in my crib like Alice was at the riverbank having nothing to do; Alice glanced at what her sister was reading and was considering whether making a daisy chain was worth getting up to pick the daisies and similarly, I was considering getting up out of my crib to see what my siblings were watching. Perhaps it was the boredom, or perhaps it was the curiosity regarding what my siblings’ were doing or the film they were watching – but it must have been the same kind of boredom and curiosity that makes one follow unusual, long-eared strangers ... and pay the price for it.
Somehow I managed to escape my crib – apparently I mastered this and would frequently emerge whenever I saw fit – and silently made my way past my mother without her knowledge toward the stairs. In another moment I was attempting to go down the stairs all by myself, never once considering how I might manage this, and then slipped down suddenly completely unable to stop myself! From what I hear, I was no longer so silent or undetectable during that fall.
Recall for a moment that Alice claims after a fall down the rabbit hole she would think nothing of falling down stairs: I must strongly note here that there is evidence to suggest that Alice fell down her rabbit hole very slowly and therefore could not be injured in the same way that a two-year-old tumbles down stairs. There is of course the other hypothesis that she did not fall slowly, but that the rabbit hole was simply very deep, and this is the reason the fall lasted so long. In this case one might think Alice was as brave as she claims to tumble down such a deep hole, but I feel I should strongly note here Alice landed upon a heap of sticks and dry leaves ... I DID NOT. The documents that detail Alice’s excursion in Wonderland state that “Alice was not a bit hurt, and she jumped onto her feet in a moment,” and if she truly fell very slowly and landed on a pile of sticks and dry leaves I am not at all surprised! The accidental fall through my rabbit hole was not as fortunate, slow, or cushioned! But I can tell you with some certainty that mine did involve crying a pool of tears upon reaching the bottom. My head was severely hurt by a blow that could have been as fatal as someone dropping an empty jar of MARMALADE on it, or perhaps even as fatal as some controlling, tart-hungry, queen with an inferiority complex demanding its removal altogether!
Apparently my fall caused some unconsciousness, as well as periodic bouts of rigidness while awake. From the descriptions of this event, I’ve deduced that this birthday came very close to becoming an UN-BIRTHDAY, if you catch my drift.
The Dormouse and Garden of Live Flowers
Anyways, I won’t bore you with details about everything that followed that night, particularly because I only remember it very vaguely and the rest of the details are known to me through the accounts of others, but also because there are several more pieces of evidence that I live in Wonderland ...
For example, I’m pretty sure that my mother is the Dormouse. She has always loved tea since childhood – coincidentally, Red Rose tea – and drinks it several times throughout the day even now. Apart from her love of tea, my mother also falls asleep frequently in front of the TV, perhaps due to some difficulty sleeping through the night – or due to the poor quality of television programming – and it is in front of the TV that she often drinks her tea! So like the Dormouse, Mom seems to fall asleep during tea time! I should also note, that the wall paper in Mom’s room is a floral design, and one flower in particular seems rather human as if from a Garden of Live Flowers ... coincidence? You decide:
The photo above is the unaltered image of the wallpaper, and the photo below is the same photo with an outline of what seems to be the profile of a woman facing left, wearing a flowery hat!
The Royal Pains of Wonderland
Another piece of evidence to support my theory that I live in Wonderland would be my sister, who has much in common with The Duchess, The Queen of Hearts, The Red Queen. It is as if she is these three wicked creatures in one!
Now, I should note here that on most occasions I refer to my sister as another character from a beloved children’s book about a magical land, as she probably has more in common with The Wicked Witch of the West, but I do see a certain similarity to the Queen of Hearts also. For starters, there is something very contradictory about her title ... the Queen of Hearts was practically heartless and my sister Claudia is similarly contradictory in that she is a child psychologist who probably left me with more psychological damage during childhood than anyone else in the world. You might say I’ve lost my head after dealing with her for so many years! Furthermore, she has quite a few psychological issues herself. Though undiagnosed, I believe 100% that she is a narcissist, partly because she flies into fits of rage at the drop of a hat. She is certainly the type of person who would fly into a violent anger if grown white roses instead of the desired red. It is these drastic mood swings that also lead me to conclude that Claudia is The Duchess, whom Wikipedia explains, “is often seen as a child's-eye-view of emotionally volatile and mysterious adults, switching back and forth between dark moods and condescending affection at unpredictable times.”
Furthermore, if you recall, The Duchess mistreats her child ... as I have noted, I have taken much bullying from Claudia over the years, but what I have not yet mentioned is that, though only six years my senior, Claudia has attempted quite literally to take on an unnecessary mothering role in my life starting when she was merely sixteen years old! For some reason, when I was in grade 5 and Claudia in grade 11, she told me frankly that she believed my parents were doing a poor job of raising me, and so endeavoured to educate and influence me about various issues on her own. I should stress that I believe many sixteen-year-old girls make fine and loving mothers, but when it comes to their own infants! Not children more than half their age! I have nothing against teenagers raising their own infants from birth, you see, but I do find it inappropriate for teenagers to suddenly raise ten-year-olds who already have perfectly functioning mothers who are loving and experienced! In my experience, a bullying, loud-mouthed, disobedient teen to usurp the role of mother in a child’s life when a child already has a mother is strange, eerie, ridiculous, and a bit scary on many levels! And so, I went on from about age ten to age thirteen engaging in depressing talks with my sister that were meant to correct my thinking, enlighten me on various issues in a similar way to the invasive Duchess teaching Alice morals in Wonderland.
Due to Claudia’s unearned and undeserved attempts of authority over me, I often explain to strangers that Claudia is really less of a sister, and more of a bitchy governess. Unfortunately, I am not exaggerating. She seems to hold frank discussions with my mother in which she tries to influence and have input in my up-brining. For example, when my first year of university was drawing near, Claudia sat down with me that summer and informed me that she and my mother feel I should join a sorority! I was quite taken aback by this ... I know by the very nature of this idea that it was not originally my mother’s idea, but that meddling Claudia put it into her head! It is this lack of trust in my own judgment and lack of willingness to let my mother raise me on my own that I see Claudia also as The Red Queen, whom Lewis Carroll described as “the concentrated essence of all governesses!"
Also, there is a certain strange attraction of cats to my house ...
... unusual cats!
Cats who you would think could understand English, just as if they came from a world where they wouldn’t say “Meow,” but rather, “Yes, Miss Lilly,” just like people! From the way the visiting cats behave, you would think they journeyed to my backyard from a world where cats and rabbits reside in fancy little houses and be dressed in shoes and hats and trousers! Allow me to elaborate:
My current cat companion is a black and white “tuxedo” cat who appears to be wearing white boots and gloves. When first we met she was walking along in our backyard as if dressed formally for some important date – of course, unlike the White Rabbit she was not in such a hurry that she could not get better acquainted with me! We soon became good friends, and since she could not tell me her name – at least not in this current world – my family and I chose to call her Boots, or Miss Boots temporarily due to her fancy clothes. She would visit me in the backyard on average 2-4 times each summer as if they was some kind of annual occasions she planned, and each time she recognized me and trotted towards me excitedly, like we were good friends who could not visit frequently due to being from lands a great distance apart. Even back then – probably more than ten years ago – I would remark how uncanny it was that she seemed to consciously visit me, but only in the warm season, as if she was only in the country on some kind of yearly vacation or trip. Once she even visited me on my birthday!
One year, when my mother was hospitalized after a back surgery Miss Boots came to visit just as I was leaving the house to go and visit my mom. I petted her briefly and told her that I wished she would come back another time because I had to visit my mom in the hospital, but that I would very much like to have a visit with her, and if she would come back after my mom was sent home it would lift her spirits greatly to see Boots. Somehow, as if she understood every word I said, she did return the next day to have a visit with me, and then the day after that, and the day after that until my mother was sent home and Boots could have a visit with her also. Unlike previous summers when she visited on 2-4 occasions, Boots visited every single day until September when she eventually moved in with us.
As I mentioned above, I truly do think this cat understands English, and that she simply pretends not to the majority of time as an excuse for not obeying most of our commands. Often when my brother says things to tease her – out of love, of course – she often turns to look at me with an expression of complete annoyance and disbelief. It is as if she cannot believe what a fool he is making of himself, and often she turns to me as if to say, “Can you please do something about this?” Once when we were talking about dogs my brother jokingly asked her if she would like a little brother puppy. At this she jerked her head and looked at him wide eyed and terrified! My brother and I burst out laughing. It was as if the suggestion of getting a wild, loud, rambunctious puppy caused her to accidentally break character and reveal that she could understand every word we say ... she looked at us as if to say, “WHAT?! YOU’D BETTER NOT!” and then jumped down off the chair and walked off in disbelief.
Remember the Cheshire Cat's smile? Well, my cat definitely has a smirk!
And Finally, The Host of the Party ...
I happen to be very close to The Mad Hatter or, at least he is frequently very close to me. You see, I have a small collection of teapots which I began collecting a few years ago with three small teapots I purchased from my place of work. I painted a special shelf on which to display them, which I hung above my bed and have used to display the three teapots and a candle that I thought completed the arrangement.
It was only about two years after arranging the pots and candle this way that I noticed an odd shadow appeared on the wall, and that this shadow looked very familiar. You may see the gentleman’s profile for yourself ...
Notice the obvious top hat that can only be a trademark of one individual! And where else would he appear but with a collection of loved teapots!
Well, I think my evidence speaks for itself. Perhaps this is why I have been inspired as of late to create Alice In Wonderland themed crafts ... although, it might be in part due to being impressed by the Syfy miniseries Alice starring Kathy Bates, Caterina Scorsone, and Andrew Lee Potts. I do watch this film and sometimes its commentary when painting crafts like the following:
I welcome any feedback or constructive criticism on these pieces, as well as suggestions for any other crafts relating to the Alice books. I intend to continue with my Wonderland crafts and am planning a collage, some boxes, and some small shelves next. Until next time, thank you for visiting me here in Wonderland, and yes, we are all mad here!