Curses, Hexes For Sale

AROUND THE RIM COUNTRY

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Have some evil spirits that need to be driven away? An enemy you’d like to jinx? Or just somebody you want to get even with?

If only you lived in Hong Kong, you would have a ready and inexpensive means to redress your grievances. There, elderly women like 78-year-old Leung Kam-ip set up on street corners and in shopping malls to practice the ancient ritual of Da Siu Yan which literally means “beating up the wicked people.”

According to a recent Associated Press article by Helen Luk, Leung, also known as Granny Kam, squats in front of a makeshift Chinese shrine adorned with incense sticks.

“Without warning, (she) starts swearing and swinging, pounding (her) shoe loud and hard on a white piece of paper emblazoned with the image of somebody her customer hoped to jinx ...” Luk wrote. “‘Beat up the gossipmongers everywhere,’ she chants.”

For good measure, Granny Kam burns the paper when she’s done.

The cost for this service is about $6.50, and customers like So So Ma, an insurance agent, believe it is money well spent. Ma told Luk that “beating up the wicked” has “soothed her anxieties” and helped her “clinch more business deals.”

We can only speculate that those Ma chose to have jinxed were people who refused to buy insurance from her probably insurance for some of the very calamities that befell them when Granny Kam worked her magic. Makes it understandable why a little Da Siu Yan would help her “clinch more business deals.”

Unfortunately the Hong Kong government is cracking down on Granny Kam and other practitioners who beat up the wicked people. Seems there are so many of them (practitioners and, we would surmise, wicked people) in Hong Kong that the ashes from all those burned pieces of paper are beginning to clutter up city streets.

So here it is the holiday season, and there’s a whole mess of unemployed beaters of the wicked. To help these unfortunate practitioners out, I propose we invite them to the Rim country lock, stock, shoe and incense.

They could set up in strategic locations around town and ply their trade. Appropriate high-traffic locales might include the Wal-Mart entrance lobby (right next to the Salvation Army bell ringer), the sidewalk outside the Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce, or, for a more serene and picturesque environment, lakeside at Green Valley Park.

Whatever could they curse, jinx or hex? Just let us count the ways. Here are the Top 10 Reasons to Bring Da Siu Yan and its Practitioners to the Rim country:

10. Can you buy a class action curse? If so, duck haters can rid themselves of the Green Valley Park quackers in one fell shoe.

9. Should the mayor stay or go? With the town split right down the middle, maybe a little hex could swing the balance.

8. Who wouldn’t travel up the Beeline from the Valley if the reward at the end was to have somebody cursed for just $6.50? It would be a totally unique tourist attraction that makes the Tonto Natural Bridge pale in comparison.

7. Can you hex a wildland fire? If so, our fire fears are history.

6. And if you can’t hex a fire, you can certainly hex Valinda Jo Elliott, which would be almost as good as hexing the fire itself.

5. Country music? Bang, bang, bang (that’s the sound of a shoe being pounded on a piece of paper bearing the words “Country Music”) it’s out of here.

4. Where has all the water gone? Ask Salt River Project. And when they refer us to their stable of lawyers for an answer, we sic Granny Kam on them.

3. If So So Ma can put a curse on people who won’t buy her insurance, I say turnabout is fair play. Let’s jinx insurance agents. And while we’re at it, maybe we could toss in a few more lawyers.

2. When it comes to gossipmongers, Hong Kong has nothing on the Rim country. I say hex them all right out of here, which would make this place so deserted we’d be able to fire a cannon down the Beeline.

1. The infamous Ex-Hex. Who among us doesn’t have an ex or two we’d like to pay back?

Gentlemen, start your incense.

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