The Hidden Almanac for
Friday December 6th, 2013
Episode 37
Previous episode: 2013-12-04
Next episode: 2013-12-09


Today is the birthday of the artist Ronald Helgin. It also marks the last credible sighting of the Black Beast. It is the the Feast Day of Saint Joel the Skull-Carrier, and in the garden, we consider evergreens.

Be Safe, and Stay Out of Trouble.


Welcome to the Hidden Almanac, I’m Reverend Mord. Today is December 6th, 2013.

Today is the birthday of the artist Ronald Helgin, born 1912. His enormous abstract canvases helped to usher in the Modern Peculiar art movement. Most of them were painted in a small garage in the Western Quarter, and though he later became quite wealthy, he refused to move to a larger studio. In an interview in 1941, he said, “Whyfore would I change? This place is me, this is my bones, this is my hands, this is my walls. All this moving! Only art stays in one place. Zingo!”

It has been suggested by later biographers that ventilation in this garage left much to be desired for one working with solvents.

On this day in the eleventh century, absolutely nothing of interest happened. Even several people being horribly murdered later reported their demises as “lackluster” and “not really worth getting out of bed.”

And it was on this day in 1804 that the Black Beast was seen for the last time by credible witnesses. A gathering of the Sacred Order of Bull Moose Men reported that the Beast climbed up on the roof of their lodge and watched them for several minutes. It was described as having a baleful gaze and wings which it raised and lowered over its head. Then it snapped off the weathervane and made off with it into the night.

While other sightings would trickle in for several days, few were clear or reliable, and the Black Beast would not be seen again for nearly a century.

Today is the Feast Day of Saint Joel the Skull-Carrier. Saint Joel was the cryptkeeper at the Abbey of Saint Peter in the town of Lowing’s Ford, which is known today as Lake Jordania. Therein lies most of the tale. Heavy flooding would eventually destroy the town, and as water levels rose in the crypt, Saint Joel carried each set of bones by hand to higher ground. He is shown as a middle-aged man with a tonsure, carrying a skull in his hands. A medal of St. Joel is used as a hood-ornament on most hearses today.

In the garden today, consider evergreens. Consider that you should have planted evergreens several months— or ideally, several years ago. Then you would be looking at something interesting. Instead it’s all dead leaves and some rather scruffy holly bushes. There is probably a lesson here.

The Hidden Almanac is brought to you by Red Wombat Tea Company, purveyors of fine and inaccessible teas. Red Wombat — "We Dig Tea."

Also brought to you by the Sacred Order of Bull Moose Men, holding their annual waffle breakfast next Thursday, at the Sacred Lodge. Come out and have some good waffles in a great cause! All proceeds go to the family of Brother Jeff, who was lost in a book six weeks ago and has now been given up for dead.

That’s the Hidden Almanac for December 6th, 2013. Be Safe, and Stay Out of Trouble.


Out of Character

The Hidden Almanac is a production of Dark Canvas Media, written by Ursula Vernon and performed and produced by Kevin Sonney. Our theme music is Moon Valley and our exit music is Red in Black, both by Kosta T. You can hear more from Kosta T at the Free Music Archive. All other content is copyright 2013, Ursula Vernon.