Golden Boys and Silver Spoons: Flea Finds
Sunday was the ideal cool and overcast day for a pale girl to do the rounds at the Long Beach Antique Market. I wasn't the only lady who thought so, the lovely Dita Von Teese was also in attendance looking stylish in a black circle skirt, pointed flats, and tiny vintage sunglasses. Hey girl, I love your style. Now please, Dita, tell me the brand of your sunblock, girlfriend to girlfriend. I actually prefer the Long Beach Antique Market to the Rose Bowl because Long Beach is all antiques, it's smaller, and often the weather is just as it was on Sunday, perfect. I usually end up finding something that makes me smile. This weekend I got a little more than I bargained for, quite literally.
The day started off innocently enough with this vintage stove fella from Antique Stove Style. He's at Long Beach pretty much every month and restores these beauties himself. One day, yes one fine day I'm going to get one.
I just found this pink one on his facebook page. I'm in love.
The fun continued with minikins because maybe you are in need of some undies from the 1950's? Gently worn...and why is there a marionette on the box? I like her style too.
Love gumballs? Love strippers? I have just the thing for you. A vintage gumball dispenser with a special surprise. A girl's gotta work. The glass was a little steamy...
Next, I went a little silver teaspoon crazy. The details, the patina, the price...I had to have them all. I have no regrets because if you do stumble upon antique silver, even piecemeal like these, you must grab it up. They just don't make patterns like these anymore and they're easy to clean up if you really insist on removing the glorious tarnish.
Then I found this temple necklace at a booth with Thai imported antiques. I'm not sure of its age but it's quite heavy. Thailand holds a special place in my heart because we spent our honeymoon there, so I bought it. No regrets there either.
Just as we were leaving the Thai booth, my eye caught a glimpse of a small object that looked a lot like a tiny baby skeleton. "For good luck," the guy at the booth told me. It appeared to be made of clay. I bought it and took it home. Little did I know what I had bought and the responsibility I'd just assumed.
It seems I have purchased a Kumon Thong or a "Golden Boy" which is a little more complicated than being just "for good luck." In all fairness the guy at the booth did hand me a printout from Wikipedia but it certainly wasn't the whole story. A little digging on the internet turned up a very gruesome tale. Apparently what I have is a talisman made from the dirt of seven cemeteries. The talisman is said to have the trapped spirit of a dead boy inside it. When you take the Kumon Thong home with you, you are essentially adopting this child, a ghost child, and if you treat your ghost baby well he will grant you very good things.
Atlas Obscura has a great article on the tradition, "Caring for these statues has its own set of guidelines, requiring the owner to place it on a shelf and to offer it cups of milk and sweet drinks. Kuman thong are allegedly able to see and hear for a distance of 20,000 kilometers, giving ample protection to any household. Occasionally, however, the kuman thong are believed to be tricksters, with a particular fondness for teasing small children. When this happens, the owner is supposed to chastise the spirit by striking it lightly with a wooden rod while speaking to it in a stern tone. When someone is no longer able to care for a kuman thong in the proper fashion, he or she can dispose of it at a temple." There, the monks must perform a series of rites to release the spirit from the talisman otherwise he stays with you and from the accounts I've read on the internet, you don't want him to be angry.
The legend of the original Kumon Thong is gory and the occult practice of creating and worshipping them just as gory. It's black magic. It has its roots in murder, revenge and necromancy. It wasn't that long ago that Kumon Thong were made from actual stillborn babies. If you'd like to read the full (and I must warn, very disturbing) history of the Kumon Thong, click here.
So yeah, that's in my house now, guys. So far I've followed the rules except for the first two days when he was still in the box and I didn't know what he actually was (sorry, little buddy). He will supposedly visit us in our dreams and tell us if he's happy or not. We'll see what happens. There is a Thai temple near my house though...you know...just in case. Stay tuned.