By Cirese Summerrose
Key Themes: humour, manic-depression, bipolar disorder, prejudice, women's issues, institution, California, and Iceland.
Once upon a time, a girl child was born. In most cases, girls grow up fine. THIS girl grew up…interesting.
By incredible happenstance, she became a share-holder of a castle; a petty thief; a performance art critic; a victim of guerrilla warfare and organic farming. She did all this, before she got married and had the five kids. Add into the mix a kleptomaniac English Mastiff and the stories only grow exponentially in FUN! More remarkable yet, our heroine threw caution to the North wind and moved to Iceland where she encountered a real Viking, an unreal date (or two), went insane, and fell in love with the most beautiful island nation in the world.
Read these short-short true-life stories, and prepare to laugh out loud. Most importantly, be so very thankful they didn’t happen to YOU.
About the Author
Cirese Summerrose made her way into the world backwards. Her doctor, seeing that things were amiss, decided to turn her around. Doctors have been trying to turn her around ever since, generally with much less success.
Cirese now lives in Iceland with the Anti-cat, Brooks and the surviving house plants. She is currently at work on another book
My mother is a woman of many talents, education and a sense of humour. Most people called her an artist. We had to call her “Mom”. But worse than being an artist is that she is a born teacher. She was at her most instructive, for some reason, at meals. Of course, that was most likely the only time she could find me. Knowing full well I was about as easy to catch as Ebola, my mother would RSVP by a series of complicated hand signals and whistles and finally physical coercion in the shape of a summoned demon, namely my brother. Against my better judgment, I had to come inside after a hard won day spent in the California sun chasing lizards with bellies bluer than any Midwestern eye-shadow and that was all she wrote.
It isn’t easy being the daughter of an artist. Sometimes I think my mother said to my father, “You there. Just hold that pose…” It was a bit more complicated for my brother and me…
Mom would say to us, “Choose your Poison!” a.k.a. giving us our Botany lesson for the day, and send us back to the great wilderness to collect specimens.
To most kids, this is known as “weeding”.
My brother and I got to “pick” our dinner out of the “lawn”. And God help us if we chose poorly. Curly Dock, Lamb’s Quarters, Miner’s Lettuce, and this Identifiable Weird Weed that made your teeth green and slimy and TASTED green and slimy---which is, at least, truth in advertising. Dinnertime sidled up to the table like a blindfolded camel backing to up to a needle and Mom made the homespun yarn.
Oh yeah, Mom was yucking it up all right in the name of Higher Learning.
WE were chucking it up and right out again, in the name of Lower Spurning.
In his life, my brother, Fortunate-Blessing, went by many names, rather like the seventy-two names of God only he wasn’t quite so exalted and I mostly just yelled the same name at him seventy-two times. Usually I called him “YOU CRAFTY BUZZARD” which was his true calling as well as name. And regardless of his career choice, he and I had to hold up a United Front, or at least a good disguise. It didn’t take us long to work out a system against the Oppressors, or in this particular case, the Depressor---Mom.
One of us, usually the one in brighter clothing, would create a diversion…
Our mother, like all teachers, was always interested in WHAT WE DID IN LIFE THAT DAY. This was, of course, something along the lines of a primitive slide show (we slid the drawings/bug collection/dirt tattoos across the table to Mom) while the other one of us shoved as many Quarters of Lamb into their maw as fast as they could and then ran to the bathroom to disgorge. Being an equal opportunity family, we initially tried using the cat as a garbage disposal. He discovered our wicked plans the very first time we tried to taxidermy him WHILST HE WAS ALIVE with a Curly Dock or two, and now hid behind Mom’s easel during these fun family meals.
However, sometimes and some days there was just too much food, too little “lifework”, or too much of my brother to put up with and I would make a move out of sheer desperation. I just looked at my dear creative mother, told her I had to pee, picked up my ENTIRE PLATE, and loped briskly to the bathroom.
She never even questioned why both her hand thrown ceramic platter and I came back nekkid, why the toilet flushed one hundred and fifty times, or why, later, we heard my father cursing, “Who the HELL made soup in the toilet?!”
This product was added to our catalog on Thursday 12 November, 2009.