Shack Man

Uranus symbol modChapter One – The Collision

Having worked in a Frito Lay truck in the middle of nowhere for nine years, you might say that I was due to be liberated. I met Shack Man during a major Uranus transit. A good astrologer could have told me that things would speed up and I would be looking to revolutionize my life. Out with the old and in with the new, which becomes old in a week, so it’s in with the newer new. During a Uranus transit, you are taken very quickly to your future and it is via experimentation that you discover what does and does not work for you.

To facilitate this process progressive open-minded people come into the life to support the individual. On the flip, if you are trying to force a person under a Uranus transit to conform and maintain status quo, you will be decidedly left behind. In my case, a major player was my double Aquarian friend, Kay.

I met Kay via the Capricorn. I was new in the city and I only knew him briefly. It was a matter of just a few weeks, but my life changed due our interaction and I expect that he would tell you the same about me.

He was the type of person I am inclined to pay notice. He had an authority about him and he acted role of wise advisor to me in some ways. He was a candid man and one day he remarked that I was a “mother out looking for kids.” Well, well, well.

This was remote from how I perceived myself at the time and I rebelled against the characterization, but you know, he was right. It did not take me long to glean this and my axis tilted on his insight.

He suggested that I make a trip to a specific bar in the city. I prompted him for more information but he did not really elaborate other than to tell me that there was a gal who worked there that he thought I would like. “She could use a friend like you and you could use a friend like her.”

He took the time to draw me a map. He drew two of them actually. He drew a regular map and a rush hour map and I was amused. He was the sort not so easy to dismiss, and I am the sort to think most everything is a sign, so I took his advice and popped into this place one afternoon.

I’m nearly a non drinker, but I’m highly at ease in a bar environment. I was a bartender from the time I was fifteen until I was twenty one. It’s a tale for another day and yes, I know that’s illegal but I am surely past the statute of limitations at this point and I mention this to make a point. I have no qualms about going to a bar alone or anything like that. None at all. I’m in my element.

On this day I followed his concise map. I got lost twice in spite, but I eventually found the place, posted up and ordered my usual from the gal behind the bar. Orange juice and soda water.

Kay served me, laughed and said that my drink was on her. I was surprised. She said that she was a big spender on my OJ and that made me laugh. I am pretty much ready to be friends with anyone who makes me laugh and I wondered if this might be the gal that he meant.

There was a brief exchange, some banter.

“Is that OJ too strong for you, or is it just right?”

She turned to the bartender working with her and said she was taking a break. I watched her pour herself a cup of coffee and expected her to head to the backroom wherever it may be, but she surprised me again when she rounded the bar and sat down next to me, reaching to shake my hand.

“I’m Kay. I’m going shopping at the mall tomorrow. Do you want to come with me?”

I smile. Yeah, this has got to be the gal. “Uh. Yeah. Yeah I do.”

“Good! Let’s meet here tomorrow at noon. I don’t like to go shopping alone and you look like a good person to go with. What’s your name anyway?”

That was that. Fast friends. You can’t have a proper Uranus transit without an Aquarian guide, so here she was, and I was loaded in the chute.

Like I said, I was new in the city and I was keen to reinvent myself and make a life that was dramatically different from the one I had in the little desert town I’d left a few months earlier. Kay was the ideal friend. She granted me total acceptance while I tried out different ways of being, various ways of presenting myself. I returned her favor in my own form, but that would be her story to tell, right?

The thing with her is that anything went. I was wearing underwear as outerwear on Monday, chic on Tuesday, out in my pajama’s on Wednesday, Euro on Thursday, and demure on Friday. All of this was fine with her and why wouldn’t it be? She wore a chunky turquoise bracelet hanging around her ear one evening as I recall and she was out many times wearing ripped and dirty mans jeans so what’s she got to say if I go out wearing striped tights?

She wore those jeans with purpose, by the way. They made her happy. They made her feel vitally alive because Kay loved farms. She loved everything about them and she told me that she hoped that she would be mistaken for having just left one.

“But Kay. Those pants are filthy.”

“Yeah I know. Well, I know they’re a little dirty. I don’t think they’re exactly filthy Elsa, but what if they are? Do you want to know something else about them?”

“I do.”

“They’re man’s pants! How about that? I think they’re fun.”

I laugh. “I think they’re dirty.”

“Of course they’re dirty. I’m supposed to look like I work on a farm.”

“Right.”

“I wouldn’t like anyone who doesn’t like animals anyway.”

“Yeah, I know.”

“If a little cow dung is going to bother them… And I look pretty good for someone who has been feeding animals all day.”

“Yeah, you do. But you haven’t fed animals on a farm since you were four years old, Kay.”

“I know. But let’s hope I am mistaken by people out there who don’t know that.”

“Okay then.” I wink. “If you’re mistaken for a farm girl, or even a farm man, I’ll keep quiet about it.”

“Ooooh! I hope that happens.”

In contrast, have you heard I have a Leo Venus? That’s right. It’s all about drama baby. The night I met Shack I was wearing a gold hat, a gold skirt and turtleneck teamed with bright blue tights. The blue tights were meant to screw up the look. It was my sister who taught me to dress this way. Not that she would wear something like this because she wouldn’t and I am sure she’d want you to know that. This was her idea, specific to me and I was trying it out.

My sister has a motto, “Wear the right clothes and you don’t have to talk.” She felt I should pre-qualify men in this way. It’s her feeling that I was born to spit in people’s soup. You know… Give ‘em jolt. Wake ‘em up. Considering this, she thought it not very sporting of me to go out clothed normally. She felt it was an error that I should masquerade as someone who would have a minimal impact on your life if you were to choose to tango with me.

I may have rejected this idea, but I had a therapist tell me what was essentially the same thing a few months later so I decided to take their point. I did have a habit of showing up “maiden-esque” and then morphing into the piece of work that I am. I’d come to see that it really isn’t fair to dress as if you are a simple or safe or a meek type woman when you who you really are, is me. I had decided to change this, so I was I was out experimenting with different ways to present myself. I was looking for a façade that would not be a façade and I was very happily all over the page during the process.

So on this night, on the Shack night, Kay and I went out to do what we do. What do we do? We put on our costumes and go somewhere, anywhere. A bar I mean. This is our comfort zone. It’s our playing field. We’d walk in and scan the place for who looks most promising, where promising equals interesting. We’d do this from the threshold of the place and there was usually a consensus between us. How many interesting people are there anyway? There are not that many and they are generally easy to spot.

Two men at a bar, five men at a table, it makes no difference. We are not coy. We would approach directly, introduce ourselves and ask if we could join them and most times we could. We’d post up, have a little chat, tell some jokes and stay until our interest waned if it did.

If we became bored, we would leave graciously, usually with Kay explaining that we had to get home. She’d say that her farm chickens like to eat bright and early. “Happy chickens lay happy eggs…” Something like that. We left people smiling; this was always the thing. We were running amok, but we did no harm. It was a phase we were in. We were out entertaining and being entertained, while we evolved in ways that were personal to us and diverse but complimentary.

The night of the collision, it was early in the evening when we headed out to see what we could kick up. Kay picked the first bar. We didn’t hit the place often, but we’d been there before. Kay stopped on the way in to sing with the street musician who sat and played guitar in front of the place with fair regularity.

Kay didn’t sing very well, but it made her happy and I’m all for that. I don’t sing very well either and this is one of the things I learned from her. I learned than you can sing whenever you want to, anyway you want to, which is a good thing to know if you want a happy life.

The guitar player remembered her, but how could he forget? She sat down next to him and sang off key. She sang loud, trying to follow him. She tried but since she didn’t know the words she started making them up and it pleased him. He was flabbergasted too, but in a pleased sort of way. Of all the people who were going to pass by that night, she was surely going to be his unparalleled favorite.

Watching them and laughing, I noted Kay was in fine form. We were going to have fun for sure. The musician was intoxicated with her. She was just ultra-fetching and when she held her hand out to him for a tip at the end of his song, we all howled laughing. She smiled and winked at him, then got up and left without looking back.

He looked at me with his eyes pleading for me to bring her back to him, but I wouldn’t be able to do that. Kay could not be contained. She had momentum and many people to delight tonight, so sorry about that Music Guy. However, what we did was flit. And our attention span was generally spent within thirty minutes, so I let him know we’d be back out soon and perhaps they could share another song. He looked wistful, but that was the best I could do, so I shrugged at him and walked in the bar.

Just in the door, Kay spotted the Taurus. She wanted him and this was a major happening. I was constantly becoming enchanted with one man or the other. This is one of the main things I do, but Kay was rarely interested in dating and even when she was, she could still take it or leave it, but not this time.

She wanted this guy she saw and she was very clear on this. It was a first, so intriguing to me. I saw she was nervous and I was surprised. We’d talked to a hundred men, maybe three times that and I’d never seen this before. Hesitation.

“I want to meet him,” she said.

“The brown hair?” I did know her type. She experienced physical attraction often enough, but always found the men boring on closer inspection.

“Yes.”

“Okay! Let’s go.”

“Wait. I’m not ready.”

“Ready?” I laughed and shook my head. “Ready for what?”

“Elsa, I’m nervous.”

“You are? Because of that guy?” This was hard to believe.

“Yes. Don’t tease me.”

“Okay. What do you want to do?”

“Go talk to him I guess.”

“So let’s go.”

“Wait a minute. I’m going to sing him a song instead.”

I laughed. “A song? Okay! Sounds good. That song from outside?”

“No! That song was dim. And I don’t know the words!” She grinned. “And that little cutie over there, deserves a better song than that one. I’m gonna sing him one of my own. You’re coming with me aren’t you?”

“Of course.”

“Okay. That’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to go right over there and sing him a song. You talk to his friends, okay? I like that guy.”

“I see that. Let’s go see if he likes your song. Whatever it is, if he doesn’t like it, then he’s a pill.”

“Right. A pill. Only a pill would not like my song.”

She was nervous and it was escalating. I didn’t get it. I looked back at the guy to see what she was seeing but I couldn’t. He looked like a guy, who looked like a guy and we met plenty of them all the time, so why the panic?

“Kay, of course he’s going to like you. How can anyone not like you?”

She laughed. “You’re right! Okay, come on. I’ll decide what to sing when I get there. I hope I don’t freeze up. Crap! They’re looking over here. They see us. Oh crap. Boy, I’m scared. Here I go with my song though. Do you think I can do it?”

“Sing a song? Hell yes. And this is their lucky day to get to hear it. Mine too.”

She started to move towards them and I followed. This was gonna be something to see. On the approach, she reminded me out of the side of her mouth.

“Talk to his friends…”

“Okay, I will.”

One of his friends was Shack Man.

Chapter Two – Taurus In The Bag, Now Get Me Out Of Here

The three men were sitting at the bar and one of them saw us making a beeline. By the time we got to them, they’d spun around to face us on their stools. Kay positioned herself right in front of the Taurus. I saw her place her thumbs under her armpits and this is when I knew she was going to do it. She was going to sing the guy her chicken song. I almost passed out and broke a rib trying not to laugh. She couldn’t be serious, but I knew that she was.

She started flapping her “wings” and singing. “BOCK! BOCK! BOCK! I’M A CHICKEN!” and “I LIVE ON A FARM” and so forth. Oh crap. Very risky. She’s was bettin’ it all.

The bartender was wide eyed, incredulous. I was shocked, but couldn’t let her die on the stage. I’m her straight man, so I started talking to the friends like this was normal.

“My friend there? The one that’s singing to your friend? She likes him. In fact, I think she wants his phone number. I’m going to talk to you guys while she tries to get it. Will that be okay?”

“BOCK BOCK BOCK, I LAY MY EGGS! I’M HAP, HAP, HAPPY TO BE A CHICKEN…”

“He’s not married is he? I hope not. I hope he likes her song. I like her song. She’s pretty interested in farming. You know. Animals. Cows. Chickens. Dogs. She likes your friend too. Are you guys having any fun tonight or no?”

No response from the friends, but Kay finished singing and the Taurus was grinning ear to ear, clapping and laughing. Whew! She was in. She had him. Back to work! “Well, looks like he likes her after all. How about that? That was a pretty good song…”

No response.

Oh man… I don’t like these guys.

The one on the end was purely dismal. He didn’t make eye contact. I’d find out later that he was depressed over a lover leaving and they were out trying to cheer him up. I kept trying to talk to them, but it wasn’t happening. I was dying on the vine.

I stole a peek behind me to see that Kay had the Taurus fully engaged. She was bright eyed, grinning and happy and had her appreciative audience riveted. Good deal. Get his number and let’s get the hell out of here. I’m ready to go. Considering these “friends” I was thinking this should be like a sting operation. Get in, get the goods. Get the phone number and get the hell out of there.

I wished and hoped for a quick getaway, but Kay was having too much fun. It started to look like I might be here awhile and this was not good news. I scanned the room. I contemplated excusing myself from the friends and cruising elsewhere, other side of the bar but that would be bad form, wouldn’t it? And like I said. Kay almost never hooked up and as nervous as she was when we headed this way, I really needed to stay close to support her. Okay then.

Recommitted to doing the right thing, I spun back around to try to find a way to connect with the friends. I didn’t know either of their names. They told me but I promptly forgot. Bill and Tom? Phil and Fred? Whatever. I couldn’t have cared less. They were both weird, that’s for sure. I tried to chat with them, but no one talked but me. It was like talking into a vacuum or some kind of void.

Shack Man was already in hot pursuit of me, but I had no idea. He’d tell me later he’d seen me through the window of the bar before we even walked in. He didn’t expect me to come in and sit down next to him, never mind Kay’s song. He was rather overwhelmed.

I would have never dreamed this. I never thought about what people thought about us and besides that, I don’t live in his land. I was looking for the Scorpio in the corner doing the eye thing. Or the flamboyant Leo making a spectacle. The guy who comes over and offers up a Bogart quote. Something normal like that. “Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine…” That’s the guy I want. That’s my “imprint.” Venus in Leo needs a cue. I mean a clue.

Have you ever tried to talk to a stranger who refuses to look at you? It’s not fun. Don’t bother, that’s my advice.

I don’t separate Shack from the guy on the end. One guy broods, the other guy exudes and I just don’t care. I am there to run interference with the friends, nothing more. The main thing on my mind is to wonder what the Taurus has going that has attracted my friend who is never attracted. I am bored with the uncommunicative, trying to make nice, but way more interested in what the Taurus is saying to Kay that is making her laugh her head off.

Shack? Well he’s after me all right, but who could tell? He hunts with his Pisces Mars. Mars in a chart, shows how you get what you want. Mars in Pisces is non-aggressive and hard to focus. This goes both ways. It’s hard for the Pisces Mars to focus on the target and it is also hard for the target to see Mars coming.

Is this guy after me, or not, or is he? I can’t tell. I distinctly lacked an awareness of this kind of nebulous at the time. The seduction had begun, but Shack was coming after me in a subtle way I could not exactly detect.

How a man hunts is a fascinating thing to me. Especially when I am the prey. I’d actually studied this. A man and his Mars sign I mean. I don’t mean that I read some astrology books. Well, I have read plenty of those, but I had studied this Mars thing in the “field” over many months and had keen ability to ferret out a man’s technique. Trouble is, this was not Mars in Gemini chatting me up. This was not Mars in Sagittarius boasting about his travels or his broad-minded philosophy. He was not flattering me and he was not talking about his big house, big job, big car, big mind, big dick.

Something like that I could identify. Something like that, I had heard before. Instead, as soon as I thought he was up to something, whatever it was had dissipated. His game was advanced, sophisticated and distinctly otherworldly from my perspective.

He was not really talking to me. Just the same, he was all over me. He was merging. He was breathing. He was breathing on me and around me. I think he was whispering or at least I thought he was or that he might have been. He told me he liked my hat.

“Excuse me?”
“I like your hat.” He whispers it.

Oh boy, creepy. That’s what I think. I thank him but I don’t mean it.

He may have touched my leg. Maybe. Did he just brush my leg? Was that my imagination? He couldn’t of. He shouldn’t have, that’s for sure. I ought to slap him but I must have dreamed that anyway, right? It’s all nuance. Is he blowing on my leg or is that the ceiling fan up there? His sexual energy was coming in and over me, then rolling off and away like the tide.

I stay oblivious. It’s a fight, but I can do it. It’s called denial. How oblivious was I? Well, I was wondering if he were retarded in some way. I’m serious. He was grinning but he did not appear capable of holding a “polite chit chat while my friend picks up yours” type conversation and it bothered me. That’s what I was. Bothered. Get me out of here.

Later, much later, I would learn to like this quite a bit. What he does, I mean. His magic. His Mars. That’s an understatement really, but that night, if someone had told me that I was going to hook up with this guy, well I would have thought them mighty dim. I’m human after all. Left to my own devices, most times I will do what I always do. I will pick who I always pick, but this was a “man plans and God laughs” type deal. On this night the universe staged a joke where I was pretty much the punch line. Not that I’m complaining about that. I am happy to play the cards I’m dealt.

It was a fairly torturous hour, but Kay made her connection and was finally ready to break away from the Taurus. We said our good-byes and left the bar, blowing by one very disappointed Music Guy. We crossed the street, cut through the parking lot and met up with Shack standing by the car. Where the hell did he come from? Oh brother. Just when I thought it was safe.

“I want to see you,” he said.

“Yeah!” Big fake smile. “Maybe we’ll run into you again.” My hand is on the door handle of the car. I am almost free and this is what I want. I want out of here.
“No. I don’t want to take a chance. I want your phone number. I want to be able to call you. I want to see you again, Elsa. Please. Can I call you?”

He remembers my name. Why? I don’t remember his and I made it plainly obvious that I was not interested in him.

“I don’t think so. We’ll probably run into you guys again.”

“No. Don’t tell me that. Please. I want to have your number. There is something about you. Please. I’m a pretty good guy. I really am. I’m a good guy. I want to see you again. Give me a chance.”

That got me. I could not find words to refuse so I gave him my phone number. It was part pity, part escape mechanism. It was partly because I could feel the promise of something, but caving into pressure like that was not a normal thing for me to do. I’d betrayed myself in a way and when we drove from the parking lot, I was muttering. “Damnit Kay, I hope he doesn’t call me, that guy is a nut”. But he does call me, you know he does.

I reach down and grab my ephemeris off the floor of the car. You don’t know what an ephemeris is? It’s a book that lists the placements of the planets on any given day. It is an astrologer’s right hand. Kay is gushing and I ask her for the goods. “When’s that guys birthday?” She knows to get the birth data always. I have her trained. She rattles it off. She pulls over to the side of the street and I flip to the right page under a street light.

“Taurus. But he’s got his Moon in Aquarius. No wonder he liked your song. His Mars is in Aquarius too, so he’s all hotted up for that song. He’s in the bag Kay. He’s yours if you want him.”
“Yay! I do want him and I am not surprised that he liked that song. That chicken song is one of my best and he was worth it!”

She’s beaming.

“Oh hell yes Kay. That song was a stellar pick. He was on the mat after the fist BOCK.” I laugh.

She is very happy and I am glad for her, so instead of whining, I let the friends spin off behind me and listen to her tell me how delicious the Taurus is. If I have even a modicum of luck I will never hear from that guy anyway and by the way, what was his name..?

To be continued.

13 thoughts on “Shack Man”

  1. Yay I love your stories, Elsa! “He was on the mat after that first BOCK” lol!! I was smiling and cracking up throughout this one. Looking forward to the next installment!

  2. OMG….this is awesome…it is myself & my bestie…I am a Scorpio & she is a Pisces…when I started reading, I immedialty emaield her to read your blod (she is a fan of yours also)….what great kismet energy, not just between you & Kay, but with your own selves….understanding how to live life & enjoy, be real, silly, true, loving, friendly & magneticaly energetic. This is exaclty how my bestie, Barbie & I are, can’t wait to read more!!

      1. Thanks, you are the best, Elsa. I love your writing style and how you bring astrology to life. Wishing you peaceful and beautiful holidays!

  3. Superb story Elsa. Had me hooked in this cold morning of worry and insomnia. I will now go about my day chuckling quietly at random times because of the chicken song. Many thanks!!

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