A Magical Wonderland of Latent Kisses
When it comes to the general public, the most dangerous plant on the face of the Earth is not a mutated Venus Flytrap, nor is it Poison Ivy, Poison Oak, or a Cactus.
No, it is this thing:
Because those compelled to obey the Mistletoe are never the ones you want to heed the call.
And because you never know where the Mistletoe is going to turn up, like in a Quonset-Hut-turned-Chinese-Bar at the annual gathering of The Creepiest People on the Planet; or at the Blue Moon, where Sister Madly once danced with South American, or at the Professors’ Chanukah/Solstice/Christmas Fusion Party. As to which holiday was being celebrated at said party, that all depended upon to whom that question was directed.
So it was with the usual desperate holiday cheer that the Professors blasted Sister Madly from her lovely, toasty, velvet cocoon of a bed that morning, with a message informing her (or as they insisted, reminding her) of the aforementioned party a mere 30 minutes before Sister Madly was expected to be there- with a smile, hopefully, but that part was negotiable.
Due to the Professors’ unease of her questionable culinary skills- specifically, her penchant for blue mushrooms and purple potatoes- it was determined long before Sister Madly even knew there was a party that she would be in charge of the decorations thus eternally banished from the kitchen. Any and all pre-party snacks were to be slipped to her beneath the door for the duration of the pre-party preparations; those treats that were lost to the cats in the process were regarded as inevitable sacrifices to the cause.*
* That last part made sense to her at the time.
It was also requested that she not set fire to the German Pinwheel thingy this time around.
Thus Sister Madly arrived on the Professors’ doorstep as requested, all big-haired and bleary-eyed, armed with cider, Mistletoe, and not one blue mushroom or purple potato. She even went so far as to tuck away her German Pinwheel Pyromania in the back of her car- out of arm’s reach, surely, but still within the vicinity should the night call for it.
Now there are times in which Sister Madly feels that, amongst the Professors, her presence goes largely unnoticed while her absence is never quite forgiven. Perhaps this is why her unladylike thundering about was overlooked that day as she proceeded to hang Mistletoe in every doorway, in every non-doorway, over every available chair, over the designated snack table (which she quickly removed, as Sister Madly wanted unrestricted access to this location) over the bar, even over the most strategic location in the bathroom.
Her Mistletoe masterpiece, however, was reserved for the basement:
So while the Professors were upstairs blissfully drinking and cooking (but mostly drinking) amongst the cupboards of painted birds, Sister Madly was gleefully transforming the Enchanted Forest of Happy Little Trees below into a Magical Wonderland of Latent Kisses. Yes, shrubbery… shrubbery everywhere.
Why Mistletoe, you may ask. To begin with, one must understand the mistletoe folklore in Western Culture: while a man is permitted to kiss any woman standing beneath the mistletoe, bad luck would befall any woman who refuses his kiss- which is why Sister Madly will be hanging out on the front porch with a case of cider. Alone.
Mistletoe is also associated with fertility- another reason you’ll find Sister Madly out on the front porch with the cider. Alone.
So why mistletoe?
Because everyone deserves a chance to be kissed.
Because everyone deserves a moment of magic.
Because it was quarter to 11 in the morning and a grumpy, sleepy-eyed Sister Madly was in need of holiday decorations pronto.
It was just after 6 when the Professors, with their mulled wine and their wassail and cheese cubes on a stick, first found themselves gazing upon the Magical Wonderland of Latent Kisses, with looks of either awe or utter horror at the fact that, no matter where they stood in that basement, they were within a few inches of a kiss.*
* It was horror, no question about it.
This work of art Sister Madly likes to call A Thousand Kisses Deep.
And that was when the first group of guests began to arrive.
THEME SONG: A Thousand Kisses Deep, Leonard Cohen