Virulent Apiary

Yet always there are still those lost souls who need to experience the call through others. They have wandered too far seeking the dew from faraway flowers in shadowed glens.

Yogi Bear is a generally decent being. Smarter than the average bear, he hunts the elusive picnic basket while dodging the romantic inclinations of Cindy Bear. The Ranger does his best to keep Yogi (a yogi? A teacher?) within the confines of general bear existence without havoc ensuing to either the tourists (voyeurs?) or the picnic baskets (containers of food—life—bliss?).

Kind of a standard cartoon tension you find from Hanna Barbara outfits. Well sometimes things get turned upside down and all havoc breaks loose. That’s kind of what happens in the old early-eighties movie Yogi’s First Christmas.

After those killer bees woke me up to the vuvuzella phenomenon and dialed me in before I missed the train completely, I started getting the shakes one day. You know, patrolling the perimeters of the neutral zone for invaders from butt-town who don’t like to get down.

Hey! That’s right, wasn’t there this movie with Yogi Bear in it I actually liked? Sensor sweep is ON, Babykins. Oh yeah there it is coordinates ready to beam aboard for ducats transfer. Hey, cheap considering the civilization one is poring over.

So in a nutshell, what is that dang show about?

It’s winter at the Jellystone Ski Lodge. Yogi Bear and his compatriot Boo-Boo are fast asleep in hibernation land, so the Ranger is looking for some well-deserved (he thinks) rest. When the bears are down and out for the winter, he gets his summer vacation so to speak.

Special guest stars include various characters from other cartoons. Augie Doggie and Doggie Daddy, Snagglepuss, and Huckleberry Hound. Besides offering a number of views on events in the movie, they also double as generic extras in every scene requiring “people”.

Their presence is to ensure that this is a memorable and fun holiday at the lodge. Who wouldn’t want to hang out with such a festive and interesting bunch? Who wouldn’t sympathize with them and their friendly outlook?

Only, the manager of the ski lodge says there’s trouble! The owner of the ski lodge, a Mrs. Throckmorton, is coming to inspect the premises and make a decision as to whether or not to close the lodge permanently. See, there have been all these strange happenings driving visitors away…

Chances are, unless the staff puts on a grand show of all grand shows the lodge is finished! Because while the Ranger is good at dealing with Yogi Bear, he is generally poor at just about everything else. The manager is really just a satellite extension of the Ranger, representing “the suits” behind administration.

But wait, there’s more!

There’s a mean old hermit who hates Christmas and all them “do-gooder city folk” ruining his solitude with their crummy good cheer. Well, this time, he’s decided he’s had enough and is going to go Nuclear Grinch on all their big behinds.

Although, he doesn’t have any elaborate plan other than ruin or destroy stuff. Which is actually kind of funny even though if he’d pulled any of it off people would have gotten hurt or killed.

Extra bonus!

Mrs. Throckmorton’s nephew is a spoiled rotten little brat who hates everyone and especially hates Christmas. He decides to make everyone pay by makin’ mischief. Oh! Who could it be pulling these pranks on us nice cartoon characters?

The little brat eventually hooks up with the hermit and they join forces to make this the worst Christmas ever. After a song where they sing about their mutual hate of Christmas and the horrible things they will do, of course.

Good times.

Looks like the lodge is toast. Not only that, but the good guys are going to work their little rumps off trying to make a good impression, and when they fail will probably think it was all their fault for not trying hard enough!

Unfortunately for the bad guys, Yogi Bear hears Christmas singing and wakes up. He decides to find out what the noise—noise—noise is all about and leaves his cave. Boo-Boo has to keep an eye on him of course, and follows Yogi through the secret cave tunnel that leads RIGHT TO THE DAMN LODGE!

Okay, we are in weirdo land here folks. The Ranger finds all his powers useless during the winter. Yogi declares his intention to see what this Christmas thing is all about, and there’s not a thing Ranger can do but gnash his teeth while the manager panics. A bear on the loose is clearly much worse for the lodge’s prospects than all the vandalism and near-fatal accidents going on.

The guest stars are, of course, delighted to see their friend in a holiday special and support him fully. Yogi then proceeds to use his magic powers of effortless compassion and easy going slack to foil every damn plot by the bad guys by sheer dumb luck.

Every. Dang. Time.

Mrs. Throckmorton is immediately impressed by Yogi Bear and makes sure he is promoted each time he does something amazing. I mean, with a ski lodge with Yogi Bear protecting it from all danger and making everyone smile, who wouldn’t be impressed?

Somewhere off screen the owner must be seeing dollar signs, but from what I can tell she is just really excited that there is this awesome bear who fixes everything and is super polite and friendly while he does it.

Oh yeah and Cindy Bear gets wind of Yogi being up and decides to pursue him despite the need for her beauty sleep! Mistletoe and a music number showing Cindy at her most alluring, hoo boy.

Will Yogi manage to stay awake long enough to see Santa Claus? How will our two villains make out on Christmas Day? Will the lodge be saved instead of sold down the river for an oil refinery or strip mall? I’m pretty sure you can guess the answer to these important questions.

Watching this old show, I’m struck by how wholesome the story is. Ever since dark realism infected the popular entertainment feed trough, it’s been difficult to find any shows that dare to tell a story where things work out like gangbusters and pull it off. It all comes down to stance and technique, folks.

Yogi Bear rides the luck plane on nothing but good-hearted excitement and optimistic curiosity. This is the true spirit of adventure folks; watch a master at work. We’re all in need of this kind of energy awakening in ourselves to see and do things that have never been done.

All the other characters are driven by immediate, real world needs–responsibility of one form or another and the fear of rules not being maintained or of not doing one’s duty. The villains operate from a more selfish and dissociated form of behavior; sabotage of a system in which they feel cut off from.

Along comes Yogi Bear with his evergreen heart chakra glowing with warmth in the heart of winter. He hears the noise—noise—noise and is affected. Do we hear and are we affected?

The vuvuzellas are calling, even in the darkest night of Xmas Not.

The other day I went about my patrol business as usual. It’s a strange charge and a difficult burden being the park ranger for the Mysterious Island beyond the reaches of many imaginations. Boiling coffee in a hat can be a drag. Pulling improvised cosmic torpedoes out of your bag of tricks is a common state of affairs.

Then those ding dang killer bees started making noise in the main hallway of the honeycomb hideout. What is that crazy noise?

They’re all set with sweet sweet honey for the winter, plenty of mega-zhord stings stored up for a beastly Spring of ultimate bushwhack, and wing music beats from the sampladelic depot near party central to keep them warm. They may make surprise jackup-in-the-box snow strikes in time for Xmas Not, just you wait Henry Higgins!

That’s what that noise is. Those glorious, outrageous, thrilling vuvuzellas that made the world wince and tremble during World Cup time. The videos were enough to make me tremble with longing, such awesome noise—noise—noise!

A lot of Grinches were pretty put out by those things, laughably complaining that they should be banned because they were “too low”. This from a sport that invented the term “football hooligans.”

Methinks it was a little bit of the ol’ jealousy of being outdone to infinity, mixed in with a general dislike of brown people.

I used to have a red vuvuzella when I was a kid and lived in New Hampshire. Ivy league students would blow them furiously during an annual bonfire in the central park of the university I lived beside.

I thought it was outstanding, so I badgered my folks into getting me one. Wasn’t hard, as they liked the noise too. Though the scale could hardly compare to those videos on YouTube—that sound was epic, man.

Broke my vuvuzella and forgot about it, until the killer bees reminded me.  “Hey, like dig, right? Remember that thang you used to have and blow every now and then? Check it out, it came back and you shluffed the notice.”

Argh! They’re right. As much as I am listening and straining with all my might to understand, still the boundless life rushes past me in countless ways.

This time, I gather to myself a number of mp3s of the noise—noise—noise, droning incessantly like a world of bees insisting that the people awaken. Awaken to judgment and resurrection to the sound of trumpets blaring in a chorus of people answering angels with a swarming sound of “yes!”

This gets me back in the frame of mind of beekeeping. Not just the physical manifestation, but also the psychic one. Of hearing the sound and recognizing my own innate calling to myself of the call.

Xmas Not is coming, and the Grinch came sliding down in a sleigh blaring a trumpet having awakened his heart.

The Celtic new year has just gotten underway, and here I am a little dazed at the last year of activity. Never mind all the nuclear meltdowns spewing radiation from afar, east coast earthquakes that feel like a jackhammer wedging of earth, hurricanes of doom missing by a few hundred feet, and rainfall soaking the loch above levels I’ve not seen since I can remember. The external world has been an expression of an inner volcano clearing its throat for an eruption.

Building a UFO can seem a little like a Noah’s Ark project at times like these.

Internally, all my life energies have gone into deep, sweeping currents rushing through the earth. I’ve had to get by on emergency life support and reserve warp only. Right at a time when I’ve been fighting a lot of battles on the home front. Lucerna’s kung fu lessons have basically kept me alive long enough to adapt to the transformational energies going on. The last year has essentially been panic and fear, dialed way up for sustained periods of time. The blinking and beeping lights on the emergency panel have been loud and overwhelming.

Thank goodness for the life support music from UFO girl!

In other news, it ain’t just me. Hek-sistah X is off on a retreat to re-visit places of great meaning to her, Hexe the Incorrigible is recovering from illness, and Alexi is busy fighting for his dream in a new land. The Quest Station is full of notes and doodles galore, all around adventure is ON THE GHOD-DAM AIR.

The garden is in shut down procedure, cats are in snuggle mode, and the honeycomb hideout and killer bees are settling in for the long winter. And it’s going to be a doozy—ran into a wooly bear and it had no orange stripes, which means you better be stocked in the larder and armed with plenty of anti-ice-weasel traps. Ol’ winter wolf has reared up dramatically and her howl is driving away the last of the summer lifeforce. Batten down the hatches and brace for impact at your stations of the cross, icy depth charges ahoy.

I made sure to give out lots of candy to the monsters dressed as humans and the kids dressed as monsters, while I still have candy to sacrifice.

I helped the bees.

The killer bees who came to rock me been wintering over and building strength.  As the spring rains of radioactive doom spill out over the land, they been buzzing slowly into hot activity, like a magma swarm of super-charged sparks under intense pressure.

All they needed was a shelter from the mindlessness of humans caught in their repeating basic mantra of bad brains programming. The killer bees grow stronger in my mind; can’t help but feel a little like a king bee, if only in a small way.

I helped more bees.

Since I decided on becoming a beekeeper, I figured I ought to start at Level 0 somewhere.  K ordered this hang-able bunch of cut bamboo wrapped and stapled together, and I put it outside for mason bees to find a home.

Those bees are rover bees, wanderers and nomads without a hive. Heh, pretty cool. They’re all over the place, but you never notice them because they come in so many shapes and sizes not always resembling the humble honey bee.

K had her doubts, but I stubbornly insisted on getting started. Next thing I know, bees! Gathering their pollen for their little larvae and mud to seal up the little nursery capsules.

She was so excited by my success that she gathered up some bamboo and created a makeshift home bunch herself.  Next, she took a block of wood and drilled holes in it.  All these things were hung in a place so as to avoid the rain and get regular sunshine (warmth and dryness being key).

Okay, so it’s like six or seven sealed nurseries now. Very small results, but still so exciting!

Started looking up YouTube videos of beekeepers, and K tuned me into the top bar method of raising hives. This looks awesome. In particular, the video of the dude installing a queen without gear and only a pipe for smoke while his kids watch strikes me as incredibly brass.

It’s a preview to get me excited about one day being capable enough to help the bees. Yes, the honey is a benefit—I am thinking of myself at least a little. The satisfaction of exploration and experience, however, is what draws me. I must know more about bees!

And I will. Muah-ha-haaa!

I find myself staring at three stickers of Michael Jackson, next to which are two pennies found in the street of some forgotten time and place.  Two bits for the eyes of a corpse, three prizes reinforcing the message of This Is It.

I am transmutating again.

The bees sing to me in harmony with the skeleton trees in the valley. The world is rumbling and washing our small lives to pieces, exposing the lies and falsehoods by which dysfunctional wretches have guided our lives in place of us taking our power for ourselves.

The nasty tenacity of a badger is what is required to heal ourselves.

Though I am reminded of don’t know mind, still others clutch at me hoping the crutch of my caring will carry them along to the next rest stop. It’s too late for any of that; people are responsible for their own lives too, and I am mindful now of the need sometimes to step back and let people have an experience of their own dark helplessness.

The light can exist only in the face of the shadow.

Hoping we will overcome our fiends and foibles is madness as surely as the never ending expectation of accomplishing all the goals we set for ourselves: Always have the dishes washed, call all our friends regularly to let them know we still breathe, regularly take those steps to improve our desired skillset so we don’t feel we are wasting our lives.

Nonsense.  Hiding ourselves from the truth of our vast self because it hurts.

In this place there is the conclusion of running, endgame.  I’m done, assent recognized and heard.  All that remains is to turn around and face that which has most frightened me. No longer will I cast this task upon my mirage, or the now-escaped lost boy who I believe will find himself, or dark forces I imagine acted without my need or assurance.

Confront the specter of my own willful standing in the way.

I was willing to pass away rather than fail again so severely, but I lived on and reached this place of understanding. I knew I would rise up and look myself in the eyes, assent to return as surely as I gave in to departure.  Take off the mask of failure and behold the truth behind my collapse into nothingness.

The dark specter welcomes me; the happy are awakened and revealed.

The only one stopping me is me. Now I see what I must do and need to experience in the deepest parts of my being.  I want to be in that place. I want to understand. With that commitment illusions fall away from my eyes and I see surely that which is needed most for me to know nothingness with juh-joy.

Supermoon rising to midnight, deep self delving the farthest reaches to uncover gold.

The ebon shark and the xanthous bee are together.

There is perilous, sweet honey.

I’m moonwalking.

Listening, hearing.  A song from outer space experienced from the inside. The sphinx is a lion tree in which a swarm of killer bees make sweet, sweet honey.

Dark and dry the desert of the damp and misty soul, calling return to broken, sunken ships of odyssey trust.  The lantern given out of sincere anguish knits a flickering, uncertain glow.

Full moon ascending, bathed in halos of clouded night reflects back my empty new moon of scaled darkness in the deepest trenches of still water beneath the skeleton trees.

Girl instincts arise, guiding the sphinx at last to a place of rest, upon moth-woven blankets of wool from the softest silver lambs with the strength of thunder in their bones.

Dreams of peaceful accord drift among the clouds, rumblings stir the sky with the forgotten ecstasy of finding.  A silence swallows up sensation, burying it within the beyond.

These wonders, I endure.

I remember what it felt like to be alive, free of coercion and restraint, bearing a fire inside of indestructible fireflies of gemstone in every color of the rainbow, its twin, and the rainbow unseen further than the reach of human destiny.

Gone forever, sacrificed on the altar of space and time for all eternity, never to be recovered.

Out of this death burns a star in all skies throughout all nothingness and somethingness.  This light remembers all I have lost and will remind me if I forget again.  Furthermore, miraculous new life is granted me in this valley.  Song of the trees a signal of wakening to what I have always been.

A door opens in me, and I know now I will be a beekeeper.  Both in the outside world where I will raise and cultivate bees, and in the inner world where I will tend the killer bees for their honey so that others might know sweetness.

I have stuff to learn now.  Small steps to take towards helping bees go about their business.  I have the feeling that Lucerna is behind this in some way.  More psychic kung fu training.

What is turning? This strange cyclical spiraling galaxy inside the barrens of my heart springing forth to leap with explosive lightning rumbles and buzzing, billowing clouds of expanding ruptures in the stale tranquility of nothingness?

Missing my friend and hek-sistah Xtine.  Alexi is off into the big dude final battle of ultra-mech lightsaber duel or die.  Hexe is softly treading inside her marvelous hut and making wondrous treasures which only those who recognize their own bones get to behold.

The other day another miracle swept over me from an unexpected corner.  Knowledge, understanding and healing in a triple powderkeg of true being and passion. Lion and maiden over creepers in balance.   Just like that, all is made clear, and flowering, fruitful release, birds in great number swooping over bridges of thought past the decrepit stumbling we call progress.

Feeding the sphinx from my hand, struggling hard to do this strange impossibility with the respect it takes, when all my dullest senses clutch at me to revert to the cruel and ugly, the default.  Ain’t misbehavin’, but not giving in to the temptation to reject beauty because it closely resembles the big come down.  Back and forth, slack hand on the reins, tight grasp on the reins. Not fully in the driver’s seat when it’s me myself and I.

Done my thing, kept my promise, barely. Now I am to do another thing. This time the task is on the unlived and unaccepted parts of me.  There’s work to do, and I am treading towards the wondrous majesty and fabulous revelation breaking out and bursting outwards from the inside uncounted depths I haven’t ever known until I would.

Yo! Yucky flounder kid! There’s water flowing, get ready for this.

They’re up to something, here in the new honeycomb hideout. Unlike most bees, killer bees stay busy during the winter, making their ultra-concentrated mega-monster honey and training in honeycomb battlegrounds for the day when they can rip and tear with adamantine claws and stingers armed with DDT in the poison capsules.

Oh yeah, and they got a phat base ringin’ down from their ghetto blasters, drumming their wings with beat box fresh fly slack attacks. Stand clear of this hive, they’ve moved into the neighborhood and they don’t like noisy neighbors!  We’ve already lost one bunch of neighbors next door—I’m wondering if the killer bees didn’t replace their ordinary soft drink with one of those ARM mortgages.  The place is now sealed off.  Weird.

I do notice I get a bonus to many rolls with the Killer Bees around. It’s kind of nice not to whiff my attempts at getting something done with half a brain.  Can’t complain when the popcorn comes out just right, with almost all kernels popped—or when those nasty caked on egg stains come off the pan when I’m scrubbing in the sink.  It’s like a soothing drone, this buzzing buzzing buzzing in the winter when most all other insectoids and their kin are stunned into immobility.

Just imagine what these super evolved bees will be up to when things warm up in the spring.  It’s going to be a crazy year, this 2010, and it’s already shaping up to be one to lose one’s mind!

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