Sunday, 20 July 2008

A Shamanic Interlude: Talkin' Dirt

Jeez, enough of the tank talk already, Aru. Block rating? Lick of the what king? I'm beginning to think you've lost touch with reality, yessir.

And that, point of fact, is what I'm gonna be talking about today. 'Cause if anyone is in touch with the world, it's us shamans. And y'know there's no finer example of all the goodness in life than in the stuff beneath our hooves. I'm talking dirt, ladies and gents. Earth, soil, mire, grime, gumbo, good ol' wet honest muck. As my gram always said, Ain't none happier than a pig rolling in mud.

What got me to thinking about this was a trip I made a couple weeks back. I was out on Azuremyst Isle, and I'd just delivered some old bits of rock to a camp near the south. While I was at the camp, two folk there caught my eye. The first was a fine chunk of a dwarf by the name of Adamant, who it turns out the rocks were for (relics he called 'em, but they just looked scribbled-on stones to me). Skin like broken bark, beard reaching his knees, eyebrows reaching his hairline, voice like a bad cough... my type alright, no question about it. I don't know what it is, but there's just something about these dwarves that gets my totems a-wobblin'.

Where was I? Oh yeah, the second one that caught my eye. This was an elf priestess that Adamant couldn't stop staring at. Hell knows why - just by looking at her I could tell she was the real prissy type, robes purer than snow, thoughts probably the same... she just screamed dull. I bet she didn't even have a lick of body hair on her. Never trust a gal without a tangle under her armpit, that's what gram always said.

And though Adamant sure wasn't subtle about eyeing her up, she of course was stuck too far up in that holy sky of hers to see the good solid stuff on offer right in front of her. Blinded by the Light and no mistake. This sir is my point today: you gotta get your hands dirty to enjoy life. You gotta feel the dirt in order to feel anything. The best things come from being a part of the world, not looking at it from a distance - and you ain't part of the world 'til you been knee deep in its shit.

Anyway, so I told all this to Adamant while I was eating my soup and picking the bigger flies out (they don't dissolve as good as the little ones). The priestess would never lower herself from her drab holy plane, I told him, and even if she did, she'd be about as fun as a lasher thorn in the butt (been there, don't recommend it). The girl probably couldn't spit without coming over all faint. No, I explained to him, real fun lies with a real girl like me, who ain't afraid to get her clothes creased (an' ripped an' smudged an' burnt).

I had him convinced, too. I was going to take him for a proper dig, the kind where you ain't looking for anything but more moist mud. But as I was sucking the dirt and squashed bugs from my hooves (y'know it's amazing what your tongue can find in those hard-to-reach places sometimes - but another story, another time), it turns out he suddenly remembered a prior engagement he had that night. Some work to do with relics. In fact it would keep him away for the indefinite future, and was so important he had to rush off right there and then. Weird.

But that ain't the end. It was only a couple days later when I found myself back that way south again. I was delivering some leaves (don't ask, these camp folk are downright odd), and lo and behold, Adamant was already back from his mysterious work, and was busy getting all goose-eyed over miss high and holy again. I tell you, the guy must've had a relic fall on his head or something. Well it ain't like I'm desperate, so I leave him to it. There's just no saving some folk.

Anyway, my advice to you all: next time you can, go find the nearest dirt and dig your hands right in. Get it right under the fingernails, all over your arms, until you realise how frickin' great it is to be part of this world... and then go fling it at the first prissy holy elf you see.

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