Wearing My Mood Ring to Church
A couple weeks ago we took a boat tour around Lake Superior in the Duluth area. I bought the kids each a souvenir from the Vista Fleet gift shop, and then, last minute, bought myself a mood ring. There were lots of options. Some shaped like sea creatures, others looked like peace signs. Fittingly, they even sold some shaped like Lake Superior. But the one I chose was an oval-shaped stone about the size of my knuckle.
When I was a kid, I loved the movie My Girl. Anna Chlumsky, Macualay Culkin; coming of age; family drama. What’s not to love? The main character, “Vada,” regularly wears a mood ring and it is always black for her perpetual bad mood. Until the end, that is. When an unfortunate event happens – I won’t say more, in case you haven’t seen it - but, reassuringly, the ring’s stone turns a brilliant blue, signaling a more peaceful state of mind.
I’m probably not the only child of the eighties and nineties to become interested in mood rings upon watching My Girl, but the fascination recently returned after our Lake Superior boat ride. Since then, I’ve been wearing it various places, under different circumstances, to see what happens.
Just for fun, I wore it to the church we’ve been attending up here in the north woods. I watched it change color when we arrived late, I watched it change as we sang hymns – especially good ones. And it changed again when the preacher’s sermon made me laugh. Who knows. It could just be a bit of a Rorschach; putting on the ring what I think it’s telling me. But either way, whether it’s *authentic* woo woo magic or just imaginative awareness, there’s something about these “tools.”
You have to be careful, of course. It is possible to stumble into dark forces; the presence of unwise spirits. As John the Evangelist says, “Test the Spirits;” words of warning to those who might go astray. But also, as a clergy mentor once shared with me: “Hey, even John Wesley said ‘plunder the Egyptians’!” (She said this when I tried to freak her out that I owned a Tarot deck.)
My mood ring, likely, does not have any super powers. But even so, it has been fun to observe it, to watch it change colors and hues. In this process, it has become an interpretive tool – like a writing prompt or an ink blot test. Most amusingly, even at church.