Can Anybody Find a Gander Somebody to Love?

“I am as gay as a daffodil, dear.” — Freddie Mercury

freddiegoosegenuineFreddie, the gander, is as sweet as can be. He’s meticulous about his performances and his appearance. No one can ruffle his feathers, so to speak. I’ve seen him trip on several occasions, sometimes in the mud while getting in or out of his porcelain bathtub, or while too busy showing off to notice the goofus dog lying on the floor in front of him. But he always bounces back quickly and as if it was all part of the show. You’d hardly know he stumbled and in a few minutes you’d be wondering if you’d seen him stumble at all.

Lately, around this something of a substitute Garden Lodge Freddie lives at during his current reincarnation as a goose, the question of whether or not he prefers men or women has come up. At a random moment of morning in the living room I asked my roommate E. to get down on the floor like he’s a goose and let’s see if Freddie is interested.

“No way!” E. Said.

I don’t blame him at all. We’ve already seen enough to establish Freddie’s prowess is directed toward men. Not ducks. Not other geese. Mostly, a certain young man named E. who doesn’t fit the profile of men the late Freddie Mercury found attractive. E. doesn’t ride a motorcycle or have a mustache and clean cut, short dark hair like Jim Hutton. Nope. E. is young and slender with long blondish hair.

Freddie doesn’t care. Last spring he made it a habit to spring into action on nights when E. came home late from work and Freddie and I were in our basement room listening to Queen. Freddie’s favorite activity to date is serenading E. to the song “Body Language”. E. would sit at the bottom of the stairs while Freddie strutted back and forth, arching his neck and his tail at the same time so his little white bum became rounded and he appeared taller as he flirted.

But finally Freddie approached E. a bit too close for comfort, acting as if E.’s knee was a step up to his lap. As he attempted to climb E., Freddie extended one wing and when E. wiggled to get away, Freddie let out an annoyed, “Uuuuuuhhh! Uuuuuuhhh!” sound, which in Freddie-goose means, “Come back here, darling!”

Mary Austin is reported as having told Freddie from the start, at the point when he first approached her after their extended relationship to tell her he was bi, that he was gay, as quoted here in an article from the UK’s Daily Mail:

Gazing down at her lap, Mary says softly: ‘I’ll never forget that moment. Being a bit naive, it had taken me a while to realise the truth. Afterwards he felt good about having finally told me he was bisexual. Although I do remember saying to him at the time, “No Freddie, I don’t think you are bisexual. I think you are gay.”’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2301718/Freddie-Mercury-Queen-stars-lover-Mary-Austin-cursed-fortune.html#ixzz3IEW41uOd

freddiegooseNeither E., I or Freddie care whether or not he’s attracted to men, women or ducks, actually. We were just curious what he’d do when faced with choices. As a gander he definitely prefers E. over anyone else in the room. Perhaps that will change from time to time. I doubt anyone will let him go very far.

That having been said, Freddie may be a bit lonely at times, I think. When he stays the night in the house and wakes up in the morning, he spends a good deal of time looking at himself in the mirror. I wonder if he’s reflecting on the lyrics to “Somebody to Love”.

Can anybody find me somebody to love?

Each mornin’ I get up I die a little
Can barely stand on my feet
Take a look in the mirror and cry
Lord what you’re doing to me
I have spent all my years in believin’ you
But I just can’t get no relief, Lord

Read more: Queen – Somebody To Love Lyrics | MetroLyrics

 

Freddie’s Goosestache

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Freddie likes this mustache best. It was drawn on paper with a Sharpie and balanced on his nose. He says the airbrush tool makes him look like he has a caterpillar under his nose.

Freddie would like me to stop using the GIMP airbrush tool to fill in his mustache. His exact words were:

“I reckon it…it…makes me look like I have a caterpillar on my face, dear.”

He’s right. I admit to noticing this, but I posted the photos anyway. (See November 2nds blog, “A Trinket For Freddie”.)

Have you ever seen a woolly bear caterpillar–the orange and black striped kind? I don’t know if that’s what they’re actually called, but we have them here in the northwest United States (Spokane, Washington) and I used to collect them when I was a child. Fascinated by their beauty–the way they moved, their multiple little feet, shiny black face that reminded me of a cab-over semi truck–I would watch them climb from one of my tiny hands to the other.

(See, this is part of why blogging is so great!) —> One sits down and begins writing, not knowing what facts will be learned or what direction one will take. Despite having fooled around with woolly bear caterpillars for years, I never saw which butterfly they turned into. Now, I know that they are Pyrrhantica isabella also known as Isabella Tiger Moths. According to “Weekends in Paradelle”, a WordPress neighbor of mine, the measurement of the orangish-brown bands on the woolly bear caterpillar indicate whether a winter will be harsh or mild:

“The lore is that the wider that middle brown section is (i.e., the more brown segments there are), the milder the coming winter will be. Conversely, a narrow brown band is said to predict a harsh winter.”

This reminds me of something my parents would have found in the old Farmer’s Almanacs we had lying around during the seventies. In fact, I vaguely recall something being said about the caterpillars and the weather, but time is always passing and so my memory grows foggier.

Another reason to blog and journal and keep lists and just write stuff down. I always thought my mind particularly sharp. I’ll never forget any of this, I thought as my grandparents retold stories to me.

Hah! Right.

For many tales I wonder these days if I wouldn’t find my imagination has filled in details where there were none.

So, back to Freddie’s mustache.

Ah, yes. Caterpillar.
Ah, yes. Caterpillar.

I asked him in the beginning if he would like to have a mustache, since Freddie Mercury’s mustache is like a trademark, and Freddie agreed that a mustache lends character.

“Otherwise I will look like any old gander,” he said. “I mean, if you want to see a gander, just look on the Internet these days or visit a farm. There I am. That’s not me.”

There isn’t a way for Freddie to have a real mustache as geese don’t grow facial hair. Since his bird features are far different from when he was human, there’s no way for him to wear a fake mustache. Options are limited to modern graphic design.

“I studied graphic arts at Ealing College, you know.”

(Sometimes I have to reassure Freddie that I know and that I respect that he was once not only human, but a rock GOD.)

I tell him, “Freddie, I am like P. or M. were in your former life. I care what you eat and whether your gifts are personal. I pay attention.”

Still, he’s not so sure. And if I showed Freddie a woolly bear caterpillar he would probably react the way he did to Michael Jackson’s llama in the recording studio, so I don’t even go there.

I can hear him now, saying: They’re not woolly at all. Just prickly bastards. 

"Please do this one over, darling. It's a disgrace!"
“Please do this one over, darling. It’s a disgrace!”

So I won’t bother asking. And let’s not tell Freddie what Uncyclopedia says:

“In addition, it has recently been discovered that his moustache was home to several species of endangered animals.”

Or that, according to Cracked.com, “it was generally agreed a woman could get pregnant just being in the same room as his mustache.”

Freddie’s last word on the matter:

“Darling, I am a gander. Why ever would I need a lip warmer in this lifetime? That just doesn’t make a bit of sense now, does it? You think?”

A Trinket For Freddie

Freddie and his statue from Rare & Retro Vintage.
Freddie and his statue from Rare & Retro Vintage.

Last month I decided to meander local antique stores as I have not done in years. Along with many other joys in life I’d left behind for nearly a decade, antiquing seemed a pleasure of the past. After a rather quick reintroduction, I caught up with the current antique shop scene in the city of Spokane, Washington where I live. While I’m not in the market for anything extravagant, I can’t say I won’t begin collecting in the future. Not only do I adore the sturdiness of real wood, but the intricate carvings and stately styles of furniture of bygone eras blanket a room in such a way that feelings are evoked from all who enter. People may not discover these feelings right away, but they will know something is happening, because words will escape their mouths. Statements like, “You never know what to expect in these neighborhoods. When I walked inside I thought, Wow, this is a nice house!”

Indeed, last month is when I decided to put almost all my contemporary furnishings up for sale on Craigslist and replace them with either older pieces or styles that fit my personality. Previous furniture had been chosen to accommodate other folks who resided in my home for a good number of years, but the furniture was not only wrong for the period of the house (1938), but bulky and dark and just blah. I called the brown micro-fiber sectional “The Giant Turd”, if that gives you any idea. And I said that once “The Giant Turd” was gone, it was as if the house was no longer constipated.

This is true. I chose furniture with legs. This way I can sweep beneath the furniture easily. Height, not width, is fashionable in a house like this in which the living room is small and square, with a fireplace, and of a pre-television design. The only other item I long for is an antique upright piano, but there just isn’t room in here.

While window shopping antique shops, there were a couple of things I looked for. 1. salt and pepper shakers, 2. lamps, 3. coasters, 4. anything that caught my eye. After many hours I found salt and pepper shakers: petite, orangish-opalescent shakers made in Japan. Simple. Elegant. Perfect.

Lamps, I have not found.

Freddie likes his "things". This painting I found at the feed store on sale for $5. It's perfect for Freddie. He's very proud that even the feed store knows who he is.
Freddie likes his “things”. This painting I found at the feed store on sale for $5. It’s perfect for Freddie. He’s very proud that even the feed store knows who he is.

The other item I came across was at a friendly little 1,600 sq ft store called Rare and Retro Vintage at 27 West Indiana Avenue. The store only opened on May 2, 2014, but I was impressed with the layout, prices and inventory. Not only did I find a set of glass coasters, hand-painted and made in Japan, but a light turquoise, glaze statue, about five inches tall, of a woman in a long dress, her arms spread out with the arms of the dress like wings. When I laid eyes on this piece, I knew it probably wasn’t something expensive, but struck a chord, nonetheless, reminding me of Freddie Mercury’s love of astrological symbols, The Virgin for Virgo is his birth sign, and the white blouse he would wear on stage during the seventies with the arms just like that on the statue.

This is so Freddie, was my thought.

So I purchased this little statue and the coasters and went home.

That evening I brought Freddie Goose in the house so he could prance around the living room and do his entertainment bit that he enjoys. By that time I’d refurnished the living room, so Freddie had some studying to keep him occupied while I unwrapped and polished the statue.

I settled on the sofa.

“Freddie,” I said. “I have a present for you.”

I held the statue in Freddie’s direction. He tipped his head curiously and approached, uttering a soft, “Heh.” as he does when he’s feeling gentle and intimate. What struck me first was that he wasn’t afraid of the statue in the least. He kept looking and looking. Tipping his head this way and that way. Then he craned his neck and reached toward the statue with his bill, touching it lightly on the arm, and then said, “Heh.” and touched the head and then the feet. After that, Freddie straightened up proudly as he always does and began prancing. (Did I mention we were listening to Queen the entire time? Freddie Goose loves Queen, of course. That goes without saying.)

This made me very happy. I wasn’t sure how he would react to the statue. Would he grab it and fling it like he does chunks of mud he excavates outside? Would he bite it to see if it was edible? <–I highly doubted this, because Freddie Goose is particular about his diet and smarter than that. He was not afraid. He even let me touch the feathers on his shoulder with the statue.

Now the ethereal Virgo in blue stands in front of a vase near the front window where Freddie passes by now and then during one of his performances.

Quoth the Freddies: Christmas and Gift-Giving

freddiegoosejustmeToday I asked Freddie what he thinks of November and he said he loves it because it’s close to Christmas, but he doesn’t like to be cold.

“O, I hate the cold. It is probably why I returned as a goose, darling. Now, I can never be cold. Just think of it–permanent goose down. And I’m lucky I’m not that kind of goose–a Christmas goose. Makes me shudder to think of it.” — Freddie Goose, November 1st, 2014.

Why do you love Christmas so much, Freddie?

“Why, I love giving little gifts, of course. Why else? You can’t have Christmas without gifts. Even when I was a human, that’s why I loved Christmas. They don’t have to be expensive gifts, darling. Doesn’t everyone like a thoughtful little gift?” — Freddie Goose, November 1st, 2014.

And Freddie Mercury the man, from FREDDIE MERCURY: HIS LIFE, IN HIS OWN WORDS:

“I’ll tell you a good example. The other day Mary gave me a wonderful present that I haven’t seen before. It’s something that nobody else would think of, and it might be totally useless for you, but it’s something from somebody who cares and that’s what matters. She gave me this little gift that she went out of her way to arrange. It was the newspaper of the day that I was born — so you can actually read about what was going on when you were born. It was The Times, September 5th, 1946. And she also got me 1846, which was wonderful. I thought that was a lovely little treat — just a little something. There’s reams and reams of paper and it was wonderful. She said, “This’ll keep you busy, dear. You can read it while you’re on the throne.” I like to read when I’m having a crap.”

During his life as a rock star, Freddie Mercury had a love for antiques, particularly Louis XIV furniture and Japanese art: vases, kimonos, lamps, paintings. In life Freddie was quoted saying:

“People are the main thing, but I have to be surrounded by something, even if it’s just object d’art. So, I collect a lot, and my whole house is filled with beautiful Japanese art and antiques. That’s also why I want lots of fish, lots of cats. I suppose it’s a sort of shy outlook.” From FREDDIE MERCURY: HIS LIFE, IN HIS OWN WORDS.

For this is something I can relate to since the day I can remember–some time in early childhood. Collecting and preserving was a hobby of mine since the start, yet I don’t care for senseless clutter, i.e. a mess. I want to look around the room and find the ambiance relaxes me. I want to feel satisfied by what my eyes take in. Only then can I truly feel content. If the room is a jumbled mess, if everything is dirty or there are piles of papers, clothing or things are not in place, it bothers me.

There are many collectors in my family. Rock collectors. Antique collectors. When I was little I collected Breyer horses and displayed them, spotless and proud, on a shelf that took up an entire wall in my room. When they couldn’t be displayed, my grandma helped me wrap them up and store them in boxes so they wouldn’t get broken. I still have them today, but I do not feel my home is big enough to display them properly as they would need a certain room buried somewhere in the house, a room with certain decor. As it is in my home, I feel it would be tacky to display them. With limited space, only certain items can be visible.

Imagine having 20 foot ceilings. The grandeur and elegance of the decor would have to be large to match such surroundings. I suppose for Freddie Goose the new Garden Lodge (temporary) has high ceilings given he’s only about two and half feet tall.

At one time Freddie Mercury said:

“There are times when I wake up in the morning and I think, “My God, I wish I wasn’t Freddie Mercury today!” I’m in the public eye whether I like it or not, but I don’t want everything I do to be made public. I’m a virgo, I’m like Greta Garbo, I want to be left alone. I am a bit reclusive but it’s not a calculated thing. I like to be alone and shut myself off with my friends, but I’d hate to be on a desert island. I would loathe that. I do like people around me but I like them in my environment. I’ve got all my friends that come to me and maybe it’s a very selfish thing to do, but it’s a wonderful treat for me.” — Freddie Mercury, from FREDDIE MERCURY: HIS LIFE, IN HIS OWN WORDS.

I admit to being the same way: I do like people around me, but I like them in my environment. Yes. I love to entertain people in my home. One of my favorite things to do. And I love to have fun–in my home. C’est vrai!

I also love “little something” gifts. The real treats. The special somethings someone who loves you might see and they know it’s “just right” and it’s really for you and you only. Those gifts are never forgotten. As the years go by, meaning is only added and you are reminded of so many wonderful times.

Are you preparing for Christmas? (Freddie says, I hope, darlings, you will skip on having goose.) Do you like to make gifts or do you lavish your loved ones in purchased finery? What has been the most perfect Christmas of your life so far?

Freddie wants to know.

Freddie Announces an Engagement at The Duck House

Freddie is pleased to announce the official engagement of Henry “Wiki” Nguyen to Emily Doodle. This pairing took everyone at Garden Lodge by surprise as Henry and his adopted muscovy sister, Bernadette, daughter of Sao-Ree and Jing-Jai Dactyl, have been inseparable since they were ducklings in June. A source says Emily must have known just the right things to say to Henry because she has him wrapped around her webbed toes. The couple has chosen Freddie to preside over their union.

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Emily (right) explains what she wants to her new fiance, Henry (left), as he bows in acknowledgement of her wishes.

“By all evidence, I expected Henry would win-over Bernadette, his adopted sister, but something changed between them. Bernadette has been hanging out with her mother and talking to her father through the fence a lot. Maybe daddy didn’t approve of Bernadette marrying a runner duck. I have to say, I’d be afraid of her dad. That Sao-Ree’s a big fella,” says Emily’s long-time friend Ming.

Long-time friend of Mary, Ming Urkel.
Long-time friend of Emily, Ming Urkel.

Paparazzi has followed the surprise couple closely during the past week, catching them breast-to-breast at various functions.

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Crowd seen leaving The Duck House. Paparazzi caught Henry and Emily (center, just in front of Augie in doorway) touching wing tips on the way out the door.

An inside source says that Emily has always been a loner and that they never expected that at five years of age Emily would get engaged, nor that young and dashing Henry would put aside his interests in Science News and taste-testing salsa for long-term romance.

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Young Henry’s preoccupation has been centered around Science News and salsa tasting for the entire five and a half months of his life.

“Friends Will Be Friends”

306282_333748863360776_187956507940013_770296_1448856739_nGenuine friends are rare. They can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Who is a real friend? A real friend will love you unconditionally. He will stand by your side through all dangers. He will never lie to you. He will never covet your wealth, neither your intellectual wealth nor your material wealth. He will remain loyal to you beyond death. Freddie Mercury had plenty of false friends. They made him feel just as lonely as jealousy, envy and hatred did. All of this tested his strength. Freddie survived with the help of his own sense of humor! It was a huge help and never deserted him.  (The Story of Farrokh Bulsara Alias Freddie Mercury, by Henriette Sadler©, English translation by Renée von Paschen ©2011, from the website: FMQ, http://www.mercury-and-queen.com/freddiemercurystoryenglish.htm.)

 

”It may sound strange, but one of the things people never noticed was that he was unbelievably modest and shy. Freddie loved to be in love. In his best time he would write a song in a few minutes, but when he was in love, it was even faster. When he was depressed, he couldn’t write a thing, and really, there aren’t any truly sad Queen songs. Even the most moving ballads aren’t sad. Although many people say that lyrics of “The Show Must Go On” are quite scary, I think it is also a very optimistic and positive song.”
Reinhold Mack, ex-producer of Queen Also from FMQ, http://www.mercury-and-queen.com/freddiemercurystoryenglish.htm.)

 

 

Writing 101: Don’t Stop the Rockin’

On this free writing day, remember the words of author Anne Lamott: “I don’t think you have time to waste not writing because you are afraid you won’t be good at it.”

Today is a free writing day. Write at least four-hundred words, and once you start typing, don’t stop. No self-editing, no trash-talking, and no second guessing: just go. Bonus points if you tackle an idea you’ve been playing with but think is too silly to post about.


Writing is rockin’. There’s no other way about it. And no one’s gonna stop me, honey. Whether I’m writing about Freddie Mercury reincarnated as a gander or pondering the nature of spiderwebs (which I haven’t done yet) or making my own mark on a co-authored novel, I will be rockin’. And I can’t stop rockin’.

Sometimes I have little to say, like when I feel frustrated. I wake up, stumble to feed the dogs and let the ducks out and then make espresso. The living room is cozy. I’ve never been more satisfied with the ambiance. Yet, I pass by. The laptop sits cold as I sweep or do dishes, make excuses to run errands or muck around digging holes. Don’t get me wrong, these things need to be done and, knowing me, I will scrub the pores in the wall because if I notice it’s dirty, I will feel a tug of duty to clean it. I’m afraid of getting lost in writing. What if I create a world so spellbinding I can’t wait to enter the next word and I forget all that’s important to me?

Wow–that sounds like what happens when people become engrossed in social media, only wouldn’t it be far better to be creating something of use rather than wasting hours refreshing a corporate advertising site? Imagine that. <—I revel in sarcasm, thanks.

So say I wake up tomorrow. Feed the dogs. Let them out. Do duck chores. Make a delicious cup of coffee and have a snack of yogurt and a banana, perhaps leftover vegetarian Tom Kha Tofu soup, and then…start writing. Today I read a manuscript for several hours, took a break due to brain fog, only to return and write my heart out on this blog. Why not every day?

Restriction is the game. I can play the game. Take away the source of input, restrain, and shift focus to another outlet. Put all the words down there as if they are my blood supply. The old methods have never worked, otherwise there would be something to show now. More than this. I know that. I also know that there was a lot I had to do around my house and I have been doing everything in my power to complete each task that’s been waiting. And I have done well, though it’s taken a year and a half to get this far. And now that so much has settled, am I not ready to get started more seriously?

I can’t continue to be like Freddie, Joaquin Phoenix’s character in the movie “The Master” and say, “If I could fart right now, I’d fart in your face.” While I’ve had a similar M.O. for many years, it’s time to move on. Farts are for kids. Farting around will not get me far. Not if I’m serious. (And I mean that metaphorically, of course.)

Time is not waiting for me. In fact, my time may be up sooner than I think.