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April Fools and The New England Follies, Part 2: Thinning the Herd and Spreading the Love

by Jo-Anne Penn-Kast April 30, 2010 10:06 PM EST
April Fools and The New England Follies, Part 2: Thinning the Herd and Spreading the Love
So ok, eventually, but all of the sudden, the rest of us get wise to the signs and start coming out in droves; staggering like zombies or like Dorothy taking in Oz for the first time. Trauma victims who are tentatively ready to believe the worst is finally over yet surprised it really is. 
 
And as we begin to adjust our eyes to the sunshine and to each other again -- to reconnect as though we've been away, that Spring Fool gets hold and we surrender willingly, Hanged Man style. 
 
We sing in the car -- loudly (old school Def Leppard is among my personal favorites as some of you might know), and preferably with the top down so that everyone within a mile radius can experience and be enveloped in our joy. And those of us fortunate enough to own a convertible (sadly, not I) will also offer to do errands or just drive around aimlessly spreading the love and picking gnats out of their teeth because we smile more -- naturally. It's tight at first but we keep the oil can at the ready.
 
On such days we feel alive again and make exciting, impossible plans for Summer Vacation before Mother's Day is even on the calendar and mentally line up more unrealistic projects than we could ever do in a lifetime if we were to list them in, say, August. We have fleeting thoughts of hosting a "finally no more ladybugs in the house party" (well, at least I did) and we buy anything with a bloom on it to jumpstart our gardens and ditch the multi layers for some inappropriate tank top the first day the temperature jumps above 50. 
 
Tag sale signs sprout up like dandelions and we become parking lot carnival junkies whooping it up and letting it all out on insane rickety rides we'd be too wise or afraid to attempt if we were operating on all of our cylinders. And above all we just KNOW anything is possible again now that the coats, boots, shovels, and hats have been formally ousted and stored away -- an almost ritual or sacred act that seems to be accompanied by a note of personal or karmic triumph (as though we have survived the rapture, outwitted the enemy, or overcome some contemptible disability).  
 
To further congratulate ourselves and celebrate the fleeting glory that is dominated by the April Fool in New England we spend exorbitant amounts on seasonal first fruits like strawberries in order to physically partake of, or taste the signs of spring -- to be sure it’s really real. 
 

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And last but not least we also make clean sweeps of past collections to thin the herd and make room for the latest and greatest. We shop till we drop for beach towels, hot pink picnic umbrellas, (found one!) romantic flow-y skirts, bright t-shirts, skimpy prom dresses, white Capri's and Bermuda shorts --that some of us won't wear until they've gotten a boatload of tanning appointments (the orange Oompa Loompa look, says I) under their belts. 
 
We get frivolous new underwear, (but will keep wearing the old standby's until the first time we get to actually wear one of our new ensems) and we drool over the sexy little gotta-have sandals sure to be a hit this summer season. All stuff we won't realistically or appropriately wear or use, if at all, until sometime in late May, June, or even July -- usually right around the time that said stuff gets marked down to clearance prices and we've lost our receipts. Meanwhile those wise autumn Fools, and those who live without much winter point and laugh at our yearly stop and go New England April Follies.
 
But still we are not yet ready to do more than peruse the racks from a safe distance from which the perched, colorful butterflies from hell taunt us. Those Reality Checks which will ultimately deflate our April Foolish high spirits and crush our blooming romantic visions -- even burn our very retinas with the glaring horror show of it all. No, better to postpone the distorted reflections of the pasty blobby hot mess we almost forgot we'd be confronted with; that thing we've cocooned and fed all winter, and that will inevitably be squeezed into a size too small because we thought we'd have more time but are still confident those last pounds will come off before we have to actually wear the thing in public. I speak, of course, about that most vicious "gotcha" of all April Fools jokes -- subjecting ourselves to going bathing suit shopping. And that much of a Fool I am not.
 
Alert: BTW New England (as if to hit the point home) there' a frost warning for tonight (as of this writing), so all you fellow April Fools bring your flowers in and cover your newly planted stuff -- again. And reclaim those jackets, hats, and layers, before you put the patio umbrellas down, the winds are whipping up into a freezing frenzy. However it's going to reach nearly 85 this weekend, so also load up on the buns and beer… I'll bring the chips.
                    
"Lord, what Fools these mortals be!" Puck, A Midsummer Night's Dream -- W. Shakespeare
 
Until next time…
 

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Some of my related articles and stuff:

April Fools and the New England Follies, Part 1, Anytime Tarot for Everyday People...et, al.  at Quantum Tarot 

What Tarot Can Do For You: Steps to Success:

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