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:) boo

Posted on Wednesday, November 1st, 2006

Wednesdays are a whole different bag of liquorice allsorts, aren’t they? Last night I was knocked back into the reality that the world that I live in is beautifully surreal if not surreality beautiful. The universe showered upon me many many little gifts yesterday, most of which I wasn’t really in the correct frame of mind to access, but the best was easily granting me another opportunity to share in the joy of the world, or in this case, allowing me to be entertained by the kids who came trick or treating. Now to suggest that my host countrymen haven’t quite got the Halloween thing down pat, would be somewhat of an understatement, for it was only introduced here, by the hallmark corporation, here some three years ago. But, you know, they have the whole pumpkin/scary mask/candy thing, as lifted from countless American movies, and the supermarket is full of orange and black attire in reverence to the pumpkin, the significance of which has always eluded me. Growing up in Scotland in the sixties we had no pumpkins, no, we had turnips, which are so muxh more scary than pussy pumkins. Anyway, as is evident, the French as up for as many holidays as they can get because it means not working and having a legitimate excuse for being trashed in the afternoon. So it was with this in mind that I dutifully answered the doorbell, just as darkness was falling, to what I thought would be a darling little bunch of children, dressed up as members of the cure, that I could give sweets to without the fear of being arrested. But it actually turned out to be, well, big kids, some of whom I’m sure I’ve seen in the bar. It went like this ..

kids trick or treat?
me trick …
kids trick or treat?
me trick
(long pause)
kids (with vacant faces) quoi?, que voulez-vous dire ?
me (losing patience sensing I’m about to take a beating) Um, ca ne fait rien, que voulez-vous?
kids de l’argent
me huh?
kids des cloppes
me les cloppes? ne voulez-vous pas des bonbons?
fat kid (looked like robert smith) monsieur, vous avez du fromage?
me ecoute, prenez mes bon-bons and fuck off (slipping back into english frustrated that my french wasn’t up to transmitting the sentiment in the way I desired)

And that, mes amis is all it took for me to start appreciating the world again. That French children can come to my house and try to terrorise me into giving them money, cigarettes and cheese (lol – the fucking french, I swear) on a night more traditonally known for, I don’t know, scaring the shit out of little kids then giving them enough sweets to ensure future diabetes, makes me truly believe that I live a wonderful life.
Little things are so important when walking along the edge.

25 Responses to “:) boo”

  1. edmur a. maia

    Robin,have you ever read the books of Peter Mayle about Provence?

  2. james

    money, smokes and cheese,
    what else is there in life,

  3. Andy from Arizona

    Awesome anecdote, R. Love it.

    We just turned off the lights and pretended we weren’t home. Then, when the coast was clear, we went out for guacamole.

  4. Ernie

    ROFLMAO re: Pussy pumkins

    That would be a great name for a new project, Robin 😉

    Happy Dia de Los Muertos, I’ll save you some carne asada tacos 🙂

    BTW “Amphetamine Dream” with Annie Barker is absolutely amazing!

  5. mike_in_york

    a fat french kid that looked like Robert Smith!!!???

    reading about your encounter had tears of laughter streaming down my face! Wish I’d thought to offer the little brats hammering our front door down Cheese!!!! Would have loved to see the look on their faces at being proffered that delicacy …..

  6. The Lullaby League

    Too funny. My Uncle used to call me “pumpkin ass”. Now, it’s sorta squashed. Like you said, it’s the little things.

  7. Dan Mudford

    Brilliant story – somehow cheese is an inherently funny food. We sat all evening with stockings over our heads and blood capsules at the ready, waiting for the bell to ring, but none came, funny that.

    P.s. Only read Peter Mayle if you feel the need to purge.

  8. antonis

    I have noticed that all your songs have many parallel melodies that are harmonic to each other in the most beautiful way. Is it mental work, or you follow your instinct and your inspire?

  9. Tal

    You’re a beautiful person, Robin. No wonder you make such lovely art.

  10. m from ny

    a half full – the way I feel about this I could have said half empty …always the optimist, me!- shaving cream can showered down upon us Halloween evening many many little gifts in the form of glass shards, particals, and twinkly tiny micro-beads. all over our kitchen. said can lobbed through our window, hopefully merely aimed at a pumpkin -see!!! we should had used turnips!!!- display in the flowerbox. Halloween is from now a non issue due to this act of random vandalism …maybe I’ll blame the French! mebbe we’ll give out cheese next year as well! LOVE this blog, Robin!

    oh, yeah, it was Gilette Foamy w/aloe vera.

  11. Al

    Tumshies Rob, tumshies. Oh and “Penny for the Guiser”, stuff yer trick or treat lark. The wife tells me it was “Give me my halloween, I’m the best yuv ever seen” in Glasgow. Seems us Scots could still teach the world a thing or two, at least with a tumshie to start with.

  12. Aimee from Louisiana

    The French trick or treat for cheese? My Gawd.

    Do the Scottish trick or treat for haggis? Or Cajuns trick or treat for boudain?

    What a sheer cluster fuck when we try to globalize cultural traditions.

    Oh well, better stock up on cheese and ciggies for next year, or at least work on your “Fuck off” in French.

  13. charlie

    dear robin hello
    well !!!! in english maybe another day
    I’ll try . it’s my first message and how can I be so stupid but thank a lot for all that you’ve made with cocteau or in solo
    voila ! j’ai 40 ans je vis en Bretagne :”quelle belle ma Bretagne quand il pleut”
    encore merci pour tout

    p.s:ma fille Enora s’endort avec Oomingmak (instrumental version Of course !!)

  14. Bernie Thomas

    Hey Robin I was listening to Harold Budd’s – By Dawns Early Light and I was wondering if you knew of a song or a album being a friend of Harolds that you liked ?

  15. Bernie Thomas

    People try and copy your sound and your vibe but everything sounds kind of secondary whereas you seem to fall into first place

  16. Anonymous

    you are so humourous person.
    a very attractive blogger.

  17. Nate MC

    Mr. Guthrie,

    I tried finding an email address to ask you this question in private but I couldn’t find one. I was wondering if you had any contact information for Siobhan de Mare or her manager/agent. I’d like to do a interview of her for my website about some of the people that were really influential to me. You were the only person I could think of that was semi-accessible that would know this.

    Are you planning another Violet Indiana album with her or have you stopped collaborating?

    Thanks for you time.
    Nate MC

  18. Indyenna (Ian)

    Turnips make for shitty pies though. The “pussy pumpkins” make delicious pies and soups. Maybe you can give the little Frenchies little baggies of cheese and crackers for Halloween.

    I made eight candy apples and eight caramel apples for Halloween. Those little monster buggers made off with them. They smelled really good.

  19. Bernie Thomas

    Kids telling you to shove your candy corn in your ass and fuck off in french just cracks me up. It is a wonderful world of when you walk along the edge

  20. Bernie Thomas

    I love the song Crescent from Continental, I hope to get the other albums soon

  21. Keith

    Love the new Mahogany album!

  22. veestar

    Neep lanterns , oh yah dancer !! That marvellous laissez faire approach to childcare in a 1970s scottish kitchen that encouraged the leaving of a child with a spoon and a range of jaggy things and blades , in order to make a candle holder that would rot and smell of burnt turnip! ‘Tis wonder any of us still have fingers

  23. R

    You’ve been tamperring with on Photoshop with your pics to make yourself look skinny. (hope this doesn’t sound too familiar of a joke..)

    So you took my advise and put a train window on the cover of the album–perfect! It looks like a mirror on a wall at the same time?
    take care (was just on yr myspace yesterday..)

    R, France

    p.s. hey everybody, haven’t been on this blog for ages…vfeeww time flies best to all!

  24. Keki

    Every time a song you’ve had play on comes on the radio, it gives me happy chills. I never regret getting XM for that reason alone. Frequent Cocteau Twins play makes for a very pleased, content me.

    As for Halloween, it’s turned so commercial it’s insane. The plus side is all the spidery/batty household accessories companies are now making here. They’re delving into more blacks and purples as well, so being blinded by all the orange isn’t quite so bad. There are also many fabrics geared towards the holiday that I love to stock up on. Our neighborhood gets pretty sad with trick or treaters. Bigger kids who don’t even dress up. Or they poke holes in garbage bags and wear them around as their costume. It’s all about the free candy, which is true, but it’s gone so greedy and so few really have fun with it. I wouldn’t mind giving big kids and grown-up’s candy if they’d put out some effort for the event… beyond getting pissy when you don’t give them something for nothing.

    I always hated that one grouchy grump who’d always demand a TRICK! hah. The hesitant, dumbfounded look always got us, not knowing how in the world to respond. I wish I’d thought to moon them.

    Despite it all, I do hope you’ve had wonderful holidays. If you’re ever down towards Nashville or Memphis drop me an email.

  25. Humphrey Primp

    Hello Robin
    The Telling Eye would like you to listen to their music at http://www.echo.ghostess.net and http://www.thetellingeye.ghostess.net
    You have been a major influence throughout the years and we would love to know what you think of our songs.

    Happy New Year

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