Crazy Dead Uncles

birdplateThe other day in a tea shop, on my way to a stressful meeting, I called on my ancestors to accompany me so that the upcoming discussion might prove beneficial for all involved.  Often when I call on the Old Ones to gather around, they’ll show me an outward sign to reassure me of their presence.

The waitress instantly dropped an empty plate which crashed into a thousand pieces on the café floor.  Later, the ceiling lights dimmed in the closed meeting room to produce an eerie twilight, then plunged us all into dramatic darkness before flashing on again.

In both situations, everyone in the room first looked at each other in surprise, then smiled at their shared experience.  The waitress grinned broadly as the other café patrons and I helped gather the shattered porcelain, and those flashing lights in the meeting room prompted spontaneous solutions, transforming hardened officials into jovial allies.

Possibly the one thing that’s more gratifying than sharing a laugh with your ancestors is being able to pass on their mad sense of humour to the descendants who’ll follow you.  I only hope I can do it with as much flare.


The Moment of Truth

Yes“‘Ohhhhhhh,’ moaned Mrs Fruit. ‘Are any of Mick Looney’s ancestors there?’

Her words hung in the air, she took a deep asthmatic breath.  Suddenly she stiffened.

‘I have somebodyyyyyyyyyyy,’ she intoned.

Looney craned forward, the moment of truth. ‘What does he say?’ he said.

The answer came clear and strong.

‘The fish knives are with Aunty Peggy.’”

Spike Milligan

from The Looney: An Irish Fantasy1987.