PBN Blues Series: “The Ballad of Stagger Lee” by Mississippi John Hurt

It is time for another installment in our PBN Blues Series. I hope you are having as much fun reading it as I am writing it. It is also my hope that you are enjoying the music that accompanies each piece. So without further delay, let us get down to it.

There are big dogs, and small dogs, and dogs in between these sizes. But everyone accepts that at any given time, there is always going to be a dog that all the other dogs know that it is a bad move to engage or start any “mess”. It is a sort of survival instinct.

The same sort of survival instinct exists among humans, as well. However, we tend to not listen to our intuition as much as we should. Those of us who are in the magical and spiritual business world are notorious for ignoring that neck chilling instinct that says “time to go on home and sit back down”. The over inflated ego can buy so much trouble that an entire bank could not cash you out of debt.

A lot of bark for a small bite

Opal T. walks into your shop in a furious fit of anger. She paces back and forth in front of your candle shelves. A cloud of vape smoke is filling your small space, but you do not wish to agitate her further by being loudly vocal about it right now. She is an established client and peer, so you decide to wait until she is composed enough to speak to you in a coherent fashion.

CC0 Creative Commons

Opal T. steps to your counter and taps her impeccably manicured fingers on your glass display case top. Her braids are moving around like they have a life of their own, as she animatedly relates the details of her latest witch war with another spiritual worker in town. The woman in her tale is a well known, and respected, community member. She is also not one to be trifled with in any fashion. However, Opal T. decides that she needs to take her to task for publicly questioning her skills.

Now, this dust up is actually not that large of an issue. Besides that, the other woman was actually correct that Opal T. is not qualified to speak on the topic of the disagreement, as she is not an initiate of the tradition in question. In this case, it would be better that it be forgotten. You tell this to your client.

She is not having it, at all. She demands to make an example of the other woman by casting a hex at her. She asks for a consult regarding the most powerful spell component packages you carry. She wants to prove a point, very messily and publicly, that she can hold her own against this woman. She calls her a washed up old hag, and you laugh with her as you bag up her purchases.

She is unsure how to actually cast the working, however. She picks out a few books so that she can construct something at home. Her purchases seem very swayed by the publisher logos on the books, and not content. It does not matter to you. Money is money.

Opal T.  leaves with a haughty gait and a twinkle in her eyes. You count your day’s cash and get ready to close. For just a moment, you get the feeling that you just made a mistake. You brush it off, and flip the closed sign. It will be the last time for many months that you go home with peace of mind.

 

Get back on the porch

Opal T. walks into your shop in a furious fit of anger. She paces back and forth in front of your candle shelves. A cloud of vape smoke is filling your small space, but you do not wish to agitate her further by being loudly vocal about it right now. She is an established client and peer, so you decide to wait until she is composed enough to speak to you in a coherent fashion.

Opal T. steps to your counter and taps her impeccably manicured fingers on your glass display case top. Her braids are moving around like they have a life of their own, as she animatedly relates the details of her latest witch war with another spiritual worker in town. The woman in her tale is a well-known, and respected, community member. She is also not one to be trifled with in any fashion. However, Opal T. decides that she needs to take her to task for publicly questioning her skills.

CC0 Creative Commons

Now, this dust up is actually not that large of an issue. Besides that, the other woman was actually correct that Opal T. is not qualified to speak on the topic of the disagreement, as she is not an initiate of the tradition in question. In this case, it would be better that it be forgotten. You tell this to your client.

She is not having it, at all. She demands to make an example of the other woman by casting a hex at her. She asks for a consult regarding the most powerful spell component packages you carry. She wants to prove a point, very messily and publicly, that she can hold her own against this woman. She calls her a washed up old hag, and you shake your head.

You attempt to reason with her. After all, a disagreement is no more reason to do offensive work of a destructive nature than a laugh at a social faux pas. You also caution her that because she is inexperience in this sort of thing, it is not advisable.

She gives you an angry glare and storms through the book section. She is unsure how to actually cast the working, however. She picks out a few titles so that she can construct something at home. Her purchases seem very swayed by the publisher logos on the books, and not content.

Once again, when she returns to the counter, you caution her about making sure this is the route she wishes to travel.  She asks you to help her construct a cursing spell. As her peer, you do not wish her to undertake anything that would distract her from her usual practices. You also do not wish to become involved in a witch war. Lastly, through your knowledge of the parties involved, you have a strong feeling that she is about to get magically “mollywhopped” with extreme prejudice when she goes up against that other practitioner.

CC0 Creative Commons

You refuse to do the spell design for her. However you do sell the books to her. You are in business, after all. Your conscience is clear.

More importantly, you have successfully avoided involvement in a conflict that can cost you business. Never take sides in a public conflict. You are not a judge or jury. You are in the business of business.

You wait for the inevitable news of another witch war gone wrong. Shaking your head, you do a clearing of your shop and get rid of her energy. Some people should not be tried by the weak and ego-driven.

The woman she is attacking does not get involved in trifles, partly because all her enemies know better than to try her. She is the sort that should be left alone. She is merciless, as are most experienced elders with little patience. You anticipate that Opal T. is about to learn this the very hard way.

Source: PBN News

Leave a Comment