Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Why the Hopis Have So Few Beads--Part One

Aliksai!  In the Grand Canyon country they were living, by the banks of a river…a people not yet known as the Snake Clan.  One day the son of the Chief said, “Father, I have to go this way that the water runs.”  And so he sailed down the river and came to the fullness of the ocean.  There he found the island home of Kohkang Wuhti, the Spider Woman, who called the boy to come inside.

He told her a story from the myths of his people and gave her a prayer stick called a baho, explaining that he had come in search of the beads which were sacred to his clan.  She gestured over the waters to a kiva far away and said that the beads and corals were there, but the path had always been guarded by wild animals.  “I will take you,” she promised, “because you have made me happy with your stories and the power of your prayers.”

Spider Woman gave him medicine which he took into his mouth and then spurted across the waters.  A rainbow bridge appeared, arching to the kiva.  On this bridge they encountered a panther, bear, wildcat, wolf, and rattlesnake.  All these animals he subdued with the help of the medicine.

As they descended into the kiva they found a people with painted faces and many beads around their necks.  Presently the Chief handed him a pipe and said, “Smoke and swallow the smoke.”  Now this swallowing of smoke was a test and Spider Woman had prepared him for this moment.  Anyone not able to swallow without dizziness or choking would be driven off.  She stood behind him and drew the smoke out of him with her hidden powers.

Then the Chief directed the people to dress in their snake costumes and told the young man to look away.  When he turned around, all but the Chief had turned into bulls, racers, and rattlers that writhed and hissed across the floor.  While his head was turned Spider woman told him that this was yet another test, that he should never fear to touch the snakes.  Among the people was a girl of great beauty who had turned into the angriest rattlesnake of all.  Take that one, Spider Woman gestured, handing him medicine.  He poured the medicine on the snake, seizing it up and stroking it gently.  The Chief was astonished when the snake became docile and bade the young man now to become initiated as one of them.  The snakes once more assumed their human form.

Part Two coming soon!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

A Bedtime Story for Beady-Eyed Children

Once upon a time in a kingdom by the bay, a flower child whom we shall call Lady Ann set out to find adventure across the continent in Woodstock, New York.  There our fair maiden encountered an angst-ridden prince from the realm of Brooklyn.  "Don't flinch, Fair Prince," she cried. "I shall rescue you from your psychiatrist and your fear of fresh air and sunshine."  Alas, despite the birth of the Crown Prince of Cocopah, this union was doomed by the gods.  Poor Lady Ann!  Alone in this cruel world with a babe at her breast.

But Lady Ann was a resourceful little hippie chick and wrote the epic tome on raising both princes and peasants as vegetarians, The Organic Baby Food Book, published by Simon & Schuster.  But the nasty old Powers That Be in publishing wouldn't let her use the word 'vegetarian' or publish her militant vegetarian introduction, reducing it to a harmless little cookbook.  Poor Lady Ann!

Using the advance money from that book, She opened Woodstock's first bead store but suffered from gray winters and bad business.  So she packed up the crown prince and headed back to the Golden West. Guided only by angels, phoenixes, unicorns and a really good AAA Trip Tik, she landed in Sedona and set up Cocopah, Sedona's first bead shop.  Concocting magical bead kits that people came from near and far to string, she also made amulets that gave the wearer the power of being truly Beady-Eyed.

Lady Ann's adventures along the way will soon be published in the great (or at least adequate) American novel, Waiting for Mr.Wu. You'll want to stay tuned and learn how she met the powerful King of Wu who rescued her bead business and introduced her to Beijing.

1.  Visit and buy lots of beads
2.  Visit Cocopah and Cocopah North in Sedona, the oldest bead establishments in Arizona.
3.  Demand a new publication of The Organic Baby Food Book
4.  Demand publication of Waiting for Mr. Wu (and the two other novels in the'New West' trilogy.)
5.  Buy my son's book: Busted by M. Chris Fabricant
Next Posting: June 1, 2011 on why the Hopis have so few beads.