Friday, October 30, 2015

Episode 7: The sisters creep up on Halloween

Comedian Harold Lloyd as a giant papier mache head.
The expression, "The apple doesn't fall far from the tree," could have been coined to describe Ambulancia, Sireena and their mother.  Creative extravagance ran through more than a couple generations of the family.  It manifested in the girls' mother in, among other things, the making of giant papier mache heads of beings known and unknown.  She, too, loved Halloween for its expressive vistas.  This year, even with a late start, she planned to fashion (in paste, old newspapers, cardboard, brown wrapping paper and paint) five of history's worst despots.  She could see them, spotlighted on the front lawn, a cautionary tale for trick-or-treaters who had enough curiosity to ask what or who they were.  How to pick just five!  The list was nearly endless.  She felt the enormous, heartless faces would help illustrate Santayana's quote, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."  Each moment was an opportunity to learn.

For the sisters, the love of old photographs began with their grandmother, whose collection of family members, contemporaries and chums kept the girls engrossed and quiet for hours on end, listening to stories, gossip and opinion concerning every face they studied.  Their mother inherited the stockpile and, knowing they'd learned to tread gently among the fragile portraits and snapshots, let the girls visit their ancestors as they wished.  In its way, the collection was a time machine.  They did love to look at some of their mother's almost-historic discoveries, referred to as The Archives, too, especially the giant heads, though they took equal delight in her vintage photographs of balloons from the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.   None of them had yet devised a way to replicate those great floating beings but they were not ready to give up on the possibility.
Laurel and Hardy, from The Archives.


Kathleen said...


Marylinn Kelly said...

Kathleen - Thank you. Happy Halloween. xo

Kass said...

I'm feeling all a-topple thinking of the giant papier mache heads.

Marylinn Kelly said...

Kass - A challenging balancing act, for sure. It seems many people find them (a) creepy or (b) completely terrifying. I find them pleasingly odd. xo