ring

Richards RING II

Why do we need to have the old stories retold, revamped and rearranged?
Simple: as long as we‘re alive there will be new options in life, love and laughter to be examined, suffered through and applied to our daily grind.

My assistant Richard is a relentless force, urging me to tell, retell and relive a classic: Wagner‘s THE RING OF THE NIBELUNG.

Act I:

My assistant Richard may here be seen with his amour Marietta. While in semi-lockdown with the great Helen Bickers - creator of sets, costumes and lighting used in Richards RING - we uncovered new options of interpreting, enjoying and visualising love, languor and lewdness in Wagnerian relationships.
Richard may here be seen with his amour Marietta. While in semi-lockdown with the great Helen Bickers – creator of sets, costumes and lighting used in Richards RING – we uncovered new options of interpreting, enjoying and visualising love, languor and lewdness in Wagnerian relationships.

Richard‘s take on the scene above: „When Siegmund first laid eyes on Sieglinde all his anguish disappeared! The nightmare of his reality dissolved in the eyes of this pure, suffering maiden. Before mere words could break the spell, he knew their union blessed by all creation.“

Our set chooses green silk to salute all couples who ever belted, loved and killed in Bayreuththe ultimate GREEN HILL!

Act II:

Marietta here portrays many facets of WOMAN ETERNAL:
Brünnhilde, the beloved daughter of Wotan, living to obey….
+ ALL Valkyries, ready to kill or clean at daddy Wotan‘s command,
+ SIEGLINDE, the wounded, waiting, hormonally unstable earthly waif.

Richard as young Wotan: „When I look at my Brünnhilde, I salute the beauty, athletic prowess and divinity of all women in my universe!“
Richard as Siegmund: „THIS is the sister my heart and loins have been incomplete with!“
And as Hagen: „This ex-godly mere woman will surely be of some use to realise my evil plans, (evil laughter:) HOI HO!“

The breastplate of this costume design is a salute to the art of creating practical, inspiring items of clothing for the big opera stage. Attention to detail: how many pasties does Marietta‘s costume have? The spear alone should have a novel devoted to it!

Act III:

Richard may here be seen portraying a young Wotan who still hasn‘t sacrificed an eye for the favours of the sultry Fricka. Elements of his costume clearly point toward his to-be-created relations Siegmund and Siegfried. Artistic freedom: Wotan is already wearing a ring. Every child knows that the ring will only be forged MUCH later in the actual story.

You may ask yourself why I choose to blog about the Wagnerian take on mythology in these times. BIG THEME…please read „WOMEN WHO RUN WITH THE WOLVES“ by Clarissa Pinkola Estés and get back to me.

Act IV:

As grand finale: Richard and Marietta remind us to enjoy what we have right under our noses. Even if you don‘t have a garden, step out onto the balcony,
or open a window, and
KEEP IT GREEN!

If you find what I wrote above confusing, GREAT! With Richard‘s help I want to unveil tiny, appetising portions of Richard Wagner‘s DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN to any reader prepared to remove mindcuffs of mediocrity.

I like summing up the story of Wagner‘s ca. 15 hour RING as follows: „Whosoever steals the gold in the river Rhine from the Rhine maidens and makes himself a ring out of it will be ordained master of the universe.“

The RING thus deals with two timeless issues: politics…..and jewellery, HO JO TO HO!

Suggested listening: the ride of the Valkyries

Copyright for all costumes, sets and designs: Helen Bickers
Patrons: Emiro von Berejesa, Tango, Lussys von Scajuka

SPELLS OF REQUIREMENT / AN ODE TO INEFFICIENCY

Let’s talk about the environmentally friendly conversion of an untapped, readily available source of energy.

Although I’m drowning in images of the horrendous floods threatening the lives of so many people right now, the catalyst for today’s blog is my personal celebration of horrendous customer service on various continents.

It is always the small foxes of repeated irritation that threaten to drown us with their inevitable recurrence.
As visualizing potential disasters could be helpful in averting them,
I’ve spiced this blog with pictures of non-decorative objects – thanks to the creative internet sleuth HELEN BICKERS.

HORROR I
The dripping-tap-torture of unnecessary bureaucratic complications is visiting me in the form of changing bank accounts. To avoid lawsuits I’ll call the bank threatening to rob me of my sanity the Merzgrüftler Spottkasse, abbreviation: MS. It started off very innocently with me needing to insure my bicycle and ended up with me moving my accounts to the charming MS  because the staff was so friendly, helpful and VERY talented at hiding the reality of what I had signed up for. What should have been, according to the friendly staff at MS, a simple procedure, has already cost me an extra 9 precious hours of my life. An urgent phone call this morning added another 95 minutes to my Odyssey MS – AND did not bring me any closer to concluding this fury-inducing situation.

FURY  = UNTAPPED ENERGY

Like a natural birth, one knows that SUCH procedures, duration unknown,
despite empty promises,
Are to be suffered and mastered SOLO.
Likewise, procedures of a bureaucratic nature are to be endured and accomplished SOLO.
If you are very fortunate you’ll have a friend to wipe your brow, make encouraging noises and most importantly,           when it is necessary, tell you to GET-ON-WITH-IT!

SOLO & SHARED SUFFERING = UNTAPPED ENERGY

 

So instead of wasting the natural energy of any rising waves of aggression and sheer bloodlust one is inevitably subjected to,
I am looking for ways to convert the rampant energy of sheer frustration into something useful.
If clever scientists can find ways to convert sunlight, wind, and waves into useful, environmentally-friendly sources of power, shouldn’t we be able to convert the negative energy sometimes spluttering through our veins into a positive, non-threatening enhancement of our daily lives?

A SHORT HISTORY OF PERSONAL HORROR
I fondly look back at the first time an airline lost my luggage…..aaah, the innocence of assuming THIS does not happen too often….the joy of celebrating being reunited with the battered and bruised suitcases ONE WEEK later,  not yet aware that the global airline hobby of sending luggage to alternative destinations would enhance and develop  my survival instincts to the point where I suspect I’d survive if you dumped me in the forest with cabin luggage only right now.

If one travels by DB (our German train system) regularly, one automatically becomes part of an army of travellers, fondly remembering delays, suicides, and the best-of English announcement with the extra-thick German accent. Seasoned travellers can be recognized by how quickly they simmer down from
let’s-kill-the-DB-and-blow-up-the-train!!!!
to
where-is-the-closest-bar-to-trade-war-stories?

To constructively use the energy we so often waste on temper tantrums and shopping, instead of converting them into positive, FREE energy, I have compiled an alphabetical list of spells/chants/mantras to be used for safe energy conversion. If applied conscientiously in conjunction with the user manual, these spells should lower blood pressure, limit outbreaks of anger pimples and strengthen your abs.

USER MANUAL

The following spells may safely be used while driving.                                                                                                                   Most effective if all consonants CRACKLE, SNORT & POP.

BASIC EXERCISE: Pick a letter and spell matching your shoes, the weather & your mental state – take a deep breath – chant 9 repetitions of the chosen spell on ONE breath – roll your eyes once and REPEAT THE EXERCISE  UNTIL YOU CAN FEEL THE ENERGY  CONVERSION REACH YOUR TOENAILS.

WARNING: inserting short, explosive words into spells renders them useless. extending them with words containing more than 8 letters doubles efficiency.

SPELLS OF REQUIREMENT

ABOMINABLY APOPLECTIC ASS (i.e. donkey!) OF AVERSION!
BONEHEADED BRISTLY BEAST!
CRAZED CLUSTER OF CLOYING CUD!
DISGRUNTLED DODO OF A DISAPPROVING DUFFER!
EXPLOSIVE EXCREMENT OF INEXCUSABLE EXASPERATION!
FECKLESS FLOUNCE OF FLATULENT FRENZY!
GRUESOME GIT OF GRISLY GOOF!
HOSTILE HEAP OF HEINOUS HORROR!
INCESTUOUS INTERLOPER OF ILLITERATE INABILITY!
JERKING JOKER OF JEALOUS JABBERY!
KNUCKLEHEADED KLUTZ OF CLAMS!
LOATHSOME, LUBBERING, LAMEBRAINED LUNACY!
MALICIOUS MUFFER OF MEANDERING MORDACITY!
NASTY, NAUSEATING, NEANDERTHALIAN NINCOMPOOP!                                                                                       OBNOXIOUS OBJECT OF OFFENSIVE ODIUM!                                                                                                        PASSIONATE PILE OF PROCRASTINATING PRATS!                                                                                                             QUEASY QUID PRO QUO?                                                                                                                                    REVOLTING RATBAG OF RANK REVULSION!                                                                                                          SENSELESS SLEEZE OF SICKENED SPLEEN-SLAMMING SQUICK!                                                                        TENDERFOOT TWERP OF TUMULTUOUS TENACITY!                                                                                                        UMBRAGE OF UNCTIOUS UNINTELLIGENTSIA!                                                                                                               VACUOUS VEGETABLE OF VINDICTIVE VEXATION!                                                                                                       WORTHLESS WHACK OF WOODENHEADED WORMS!                                                                                                     XENOGENOUS XYLOMA OF XEROXED XYLOCARP!                                                                                                       YOWLING YODLER FROM PLANET YUCK!                                                                                                                             ZEBRAIC ZESTY ZEALOT!

If you don’t know where to start chanting spells try                                                                                                                 SHAMELESS SHIFTY-EYED CHARLATAN!

These spells were tested on 3 humans without any noticeable side-effects. If you experience weird sensations while chanting my spells, please sit down with a cup of tea, buy a dictionary OR new shoes and leave me a comment about your experiences of energy conversion.

 

 

 

 

Having grown up on a farm located in a semi-desert area, I have learned to accept the extremes of
raging fires with the accompanying POP-sounds of little animals not able to escape,
alternating with surprising cloudbursts causing decimating flooding.

As a teenager caught in a cloudburst while out riding I first learned to appreciate available natural protection and inherent survival instincts:
I couldn’t breathe because this heavy cloudburst felt like a sudden dunk into deep water.
My horse, following its‘ natural instinct, stopped dead and tried to hide his trembling head under his belly.
Trusting the natural instinct of the horse, I crawled under its belly so we could shiver and shake out the vicious onslaught of water together.

After what felt like an eternity, the sun leaped out and had the rolling fields steaming with joy in the blink of an eye.
On the long walk home I experienced my first craving to paint my toenails bright pink, put on a celebratory tiara and dance an exuberant reel of gratitude into the sunset.

Now, after decades of nearly compulsively painting my toenails pink,
I can recommend mentally stomping complications into oblivion on a regular basis.

Even if your high heels or heavy boots cannot possibly remove all of life’s problems,
dragging your shoes off your tired feet at the end of another nerve-slaughtering day
and being greeted by PINK TOENAILS
should get your smile back out of the mudslide to where it belongs.

HO JO TO HO!