What’s with the Wizard of Oz all of a sudden? Everywhere I go I’m surrounded by cowardly lions, stiff tin men, floppy scarecrows, Dorothy and her little dog, too (cue the creepy laugh). Maybe I brought this on myself starting with last night by watching a documentary on the man behind the Emerald City, L. Frank Baum. My favorite stranger, Natalie Merchant, narrated the piece so I had to watch it. It was fascinating because it wasn’t about the movie version that we all know by heart (Baum died before its production) but rather the book; the print and paper imaginings that jump started all our imaginations for years to come. So. That was last night. I went to bed dreaming of flying monkeys, apple-throwing trees and sleep-inducing poppies.
The next morning. I am a huge Sirius radio fan. More importantly I love the Coffee House. So, normally this wouldn’t surprise me. This morning on my way into work Israel Kamakawiwo’ole serenaded me with a ukulele version of ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ and while nobody (and I mean no-bod-y) can sing that song like Judy Garland I had to smile at the small coincidence. Documentary + icon song.
However, this afternoon it got weird. A girl walked, no stomped through my library with loud shoes clomping. She made such a noise that I wanted to ask her where she learned to be so graceful (not). I really was just about to say something when I noticed her feet. Ruby red high heels. I was stunned into silence. I’m sure I looked electrocuted. They sparkled just like Dorothy’s movie-version slippers (red not silver). My irritation over the noise gave way to a feeling of perplexity. In less than 12 hours I had been nudged by the ghost of L. Frank Baum three times. Documentary + iconic song + famous shoes.
The final oddity of the day was confronting Oz (again!) in a blog. I haven’t been to this particular wordsmith in months. Okay, I admit it’s been years, actually. Yes, years. Plural. In truth I was only there for the pictures. I wanted to see how love and life have been while I haven’t been stalking them. By the way, they look happy if you want to know. But, but. But! Her blog was about Halloween and dressing the rugrats in lion, scarecrow and tin man outfits. Weird. Weird. Weird.
I think when I drive home tonight I’ll listen for a weather report just to make sure there haven’t been any tornado sightings. I know I’m not in Kansas but after today I can’t be sure.
postscript ~ how’s this for weird? When I got home (not a tornado in sight) I plopped down on the couch to watch a little telly. What do I see but a commercial for some contest to win someone’s favorite books. At the top of the book list? Wicked by Gregory Maguire. The fifth Wiz-inspired sighting of the day.