Musings of a CreepKnight
During my high school years, I spent a lot of time dabbling in the mysteries of religion: Christianity, Buddhism, Paganism, I studied and tried them all trying to find my spiritual place in the whole wide scheme of things. A friend of mine, a practicing Wiccan, invited me to a meeting with her “coven.” As I was a curious sort of seeker, as well as a huge Buffy the Vampire Slayer fan, I thought “eh, what the hell.”
If only I’d known.
I’m not giving Wiccans crap. Those who are of a respectable mindset and genuine faith I have no problem with. But these were high school Wiccans. The same ones who, just the year before, were born again Christians telling people they were going to Hell for listening to Pantera and Marilyn Manson. The same ones who thought of Wicca as a way to simultaneously seem cool and edgy and piss off their parents, whom they were mad at for no reason at all (unless you count teenager as a reasonable excuse (I don’t)). So, when arriving to the meeting, I was sadly surprised to find a mess of angst ridden pseudo-goth hippies talking about the Goddess and The Craft and how cool it would be to do a ritual in an old Civil War graveyard less than a mile away. If I’d had a driver’s licence at the time, I would have left then and there.
One of the girls, a girl I’d known since elementary school but had never bothered to talk to because she was one of those chipper, upbeat, too-self-conscious-to-be-a-cheerleader types, came up to me and tried to begin a conversation. Her opening gambit was not “hello” or “greetings” or even “blessed be.” This is what she asked me:
“So what’s your spirit totem?”
Having no idea what she meant (again, this is uneducated high school me), I just sort of looked at her funny and replied “What’s your’s?” God help me, I thought she was hitting on me. In typical high school manner, she responded “I asked you first.” This lead to a great big metaphorical circle jerk that eventually resulted in me calling a friend for a ride and waiting outside on the porch of an upper, upper middle class neighborhood until my buddy in the beat up Cutlass showed and suggested that we go steal cigarettes from Food Lion. All in all, a boring story. But as I ascended from my humble beginnings and reflected back on that evening, I had always wished I’d had a better answer that would have either shut her up or so captivated her that I would have had a date to the prom who wasn’t just a friend.
“So what’s your spirit totem?”
I didn’t get into his music until well after high school, which is to say I didn’t explore him beyond those two inescapable songs that will forever live in the halls of great music. No, it wasn’t until I heard Blue Bayou for the first time that I really began to love and admire “the Caruso of Rock.” He’s been a favorite ever since, and not just for the fact that he’s the father of alternative music (no, seriously, I dare you to think of someone who was alternative before him). His songs are captivating, his catalog is diverse, and as much as any other performer or band (including Better than Ezra) has inspired me both as a writer and as a musician.
So he had to be included in Voodoo Walrus, if only as an ode to the greatest singer-songwriter who ever lived.
Also, he’s my spirit animal.