Sunday, September 6, 2009

The Exploding Clown

I'm not afraid of the Mothman. Nor a girl with a tail on top of her buttocks. Clowns, maybe. But some of you know this already. So bear with me.

Well, a few people on FB brought up clowns in one of my threads, and I thought it best to recount that fateful event, not just direct anyone to the actual post. What the hell, I might remember more details. OK, here goes (and I am linking this on FB). This is not a remembrance of a dream. Nor is it Daniel Faraday talking to me at some future date and implanting the memory into my mind. It happened. I', a kid, maybe five or six, at a circus. The clown in question was wearing a costume that was white and burnt sienna (a now obsolete Crayola color). His face make-up was the same. No hat, just floppy hair. The ceiling to the circus was huge, I recall the way the metal criss-crossed the ceiling. The way I remember it, is that everything is quiet. No announcement as the clown climbs atop a cannon the color of a tank turret. The clown does a type of curtsy. Slides into the cannon. The thing goes off, the clown is in the air and he explodes in mid-arc. Nothing but smoke. I remember the smell of that smoke, the patterns in the air. The color of the clown's buttons and the look in his eye. And no one on the audience reacted. It was as if the entire think happened with a flat screen of faces behind the clown's antics. Men had pipes and wore hats. Women wore blouses. A man directly across the ring from me wore a checkered jacket. I have asked every one of my relatives and have been told that I have NEVER been to a circus when I was a kid. The first time was when my niece Ashley was five or six, so say ten years ago. And I remember LESS about that trip than I do the time in my childhood. It happened, I know it did. So, whereas I am not afraid of clowns, let's just say that I am wary of them. Because none of them will let on that they know the answer to why I'm the only one who saw the exploding clown.


Charles Gramlich said...

I sort of wish I had a mystery like this in my childhood. That's definitely rather cool. Strange as all hell, but cool.

HemlockMan said...

I actually believe you. Clown memories are just that way. I think every creative person had a weird clown memory (or memories) from childhood. Things that you would swear are real, or which everyone around you denies.

That's a pretty good one. I almost think it's one of mine. The exploding/vanishing clown...I seem to recall that now that you mention it.

bob said...

burnt sienna ... i remember that color, and still describe things as being burnt sienna. no one knows what i'm talking about.

wild memory. i hope one day it is among all the explanations revealed to you.