"Banana Peel[Skin] is the scavenger that cleans up the damage, that scours the residue, chews up the no longer needed. Banana says time to move on, cast it off, time to move on." - Remedios: Stories of Earth and Iron from the Puertorriquenas, Aurora Levins Morales
Worrisome traits are the ones we love to cling to because they itch us with that old, familiar sensation. Some even give them names so we can hate them all over again. Others prefer the drama of denying any relationship with the twitch leaving the mystery to someone with credentials. As the transformative planet Pluto crossed the roots of his star chart Herbert had chosen the name previously assigned to a fantasy character as a way to slip between the cracks. It seemed a perfect time: winter was a time for hibernation and the extreme temperatures gave the usually virile and active man the perfect cover.
"Doesn't the man know how fertile cracks are?" Resident Mouse posed the question from his space beneath the foil wrapped bookcase. His ears twitched as he picked up the key strokes from the storyteller's computer. This was his story as well so of course his curiosity made room to eavesdrop
"Apparently not." Raven happened by in time to hear the tiny mouse's query. "That's the beauty of chaos, which is my favorite condition. Once firmly in place chaos will enjoy a place in the sun for as long as all the players keep their places." Partnerships between the kin of the tiniest of Grandmothers with the genes for meddling and Raven have a long history.
One source put their roles in Northwest Mythology thus: "There could not be two more opposite individuals among the Spirit beings of the Northwest Mythology than Raven and Mouse Woman. Raven was the Creator-Trickster of the Northwestern Indian mythology. A voracious glutton, his appetite was only matched by his enthusiasm for mischief. A shape changer, he could take many forms. He loved to upset things and cause trouble. As he sought to satisfy his appetites and often as a result of schemes and tricks that backfired, Raven established the ways of dealing with the chaotic natural world, taming it for the benefit of mankind.
Mouse Woman was the busiest of busybodies and the tinest of Grandmothers. Upset whenever the proper order of things was disturbed, she always sought to restore order and maintain balance. She was as dedicated to undoing mischief as Raven was in creating it. As a Spirit person, she could go anywhere and her mouse ears often overheard trickery in the making."
"But is there room for all the players? I mean in the cracks where there is so little room won't that get a bit ... cramped."
"That's funny little one. You who come with a skeleton able to compress into seemingly paper thin --to escape -- speak of cramping."
"I've a sense for, an instinct ... " Resident Mouse was trying that word on. Raven nodded encouraging the youngster in his self-expression. The mouse kept on. "Yes, I've an instinct for knowing how it is to be in small spaces but the man seems a very large creature to fit between the cracks."
"Ah, you slide into the very essence of Herbert's choice. Some thing, or things, must be left behind and for the time being the man is not quite sure what will be left of him after the no longer needed is stripped away."
And then, what happened?