Rat Fink Envy
Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored," the biggest, baddest, boldest blog on the block!
Sorry. Teaching alliteration today. Sticks in the brain.
When it comes to keeping stuff, there are hoarders who keep everything (like my spouse), and pitchers who toss everything (like me).
My sister is a selective hoarder. She has kept everything from her childhood that made her happy. Since her childhood was extraordinarily unhappy, she really clings to the stuff that gave her solace.
Thus has she clung to several vintage Rat Finks.
I'm still on my netbook today, so I don't have the pictures of Sis's Rat Finks that I published in previous posts. (Ah! "published in previous posts!" Alliteration!) But such is the power of the Internet that someone trolling for Rat Finks emailed me about one of the best ones in Sis's collection. Big bucks for a little plastic leering rat, small enough to stand on a quarter.
Back in the day, you could get a Rat Fink from a gumball machine for the lavish investment of a nickel. Some Finks had whiskers. Some didn't. Most were blue, but there were other colors too. I had a magenta one and an orange one (with whiskers) that I was fond of. They fell off my key chain in 8th grade, never to be seen again.
I'm 100 percent sure Sis will not part with her Rat Fink for the $75 offer she received from the interested Fink fan. I can almost see her chuckling at the thought of putting her childhood treasure into a postal mailer for that paltry sum. (postal ... paltry .;. getting the alliteration drift?)
We all take solace in something from our childhoods. And while the Rat Fink collector may envy my sister for having an orange, whiskered Fink, I envy her for having portable plastic happiness.
Because the thing that gave me solace as a child was the 75 acres of Appalachia from which my great-great-great grandfather marched to the Civil War. You'd need a massive vat of whiskered Rat Finks to buy my childhood treasure. Better to love the ugly little gumball machine toy than the mountain property that you want to keep hold of but probably won't be able to, given the rapacity of relatives, realtors, and now the new demon, Columbia Gas.
Sometimes I wish I could bring back my joyous memories by holding a tiny Rat Fink in my palm, At other times -- most times -- I think it's better to embrace a whole mountainside, the country of my blood, my soul in landscape form. Maybe I'll have to watch my farm get sold out from under me, but at least that doggoned mountain isn't going to fall off a key chain and be lost forever.