Bell, Book and Carpenter

Bell, Book and Carpenter

I dropped by ye merry olde Catholic bookstore to pick up some reading material, because I’ve got cunning, super-secret plans involving the Fellowship of Isis and the 14 Holy Helpers (all will be revealed in time, my pets). I was browsing the merchandise and playing with a little Jesus plaque that totally looked like a Green Man when a woman strode up to the front counter and addressed the saleslady.

Customer: “Hello, I need a St. Joseph statue.”

Saleslady: “To sell your house?”

Customer: “Yep.”

Saleslady: “Right this way!”

This threw me. I’m aware of the old custom of burying St. Joseph statues to sell houses, but I thought it was, like, on the down low. While I ruminated, another customer, this time a pediatric nurse, wandered into the store and glanced around nervously before approaching the counter.

[ed. note: I figured he was a pediatric nurse on account of he was wearing scrubs, but scrubs made out of a cartoony baby animal print.]

Pediatric Nurse: “Um, hi. I need a, uh… a St. Joseph statue.”

Saleslady: (with a sly smile): “What for?”

PN: (visibly sweating): “To, um… that is, I… well…”

SL: (slowly, as if to a five-year-old): “To… sell… your… house?”

PN: (eyes averted, completely mortified) “Um… yeah.”

The saleslady suddenly dropped beneath the counter, resurfacing with a small St. Joseph figurine and a photocopied, I shit you not, instruction sheet. She went over the details of the ritual I mean novena with the nurse, explaining that he needed to recite the incantation I mean prayer for nine consecutive days.

At this point, I wanted to raise my hand and say, “Excuse me, yes, everyone? That’s a spell. You’re casting a spell to sell your house. You’re practicing witchcraft, do you hear me? Witchcraft!

But then I decided that agressively bringing this to their attention might possibly be construed as an unwelcome revival of the Protestant Reformation, or at the very least slander. So I kept my mouth shut. Besides, if they ban me from the store, it’ll be an absolute bitch trying to find another source for reasonably-priced Black Madonna icons. Those don’t just grow on idolatrees, you know.

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