Wednesday, November 27, 2013

In Thanks to the Sum of all My Parts

The Donald sallied forth this morning all on his own. I felt like a mom letting her child go for the first time. He's fine, but tires easily, so I scolded him thoroughly just to be sure he'd return before he became too tired. I am Italian, so this is an appropriate gesture of love on my part.

Italian. Hmmm.  Actually, I am a Mediterranean mutt - I just did my DNA test via  I am hooked.  The DNA test was interesting. I am mostly southern Italian/Greek -- like 60%. Guess the Adriatic Sea is too small to discern the differences. That's okay - I've always had a fondness for the Greek gods.

There are mystery parts. 8% Caucasus. That's the area defined by Turkey, Syria, Iraq, Iran and Turkmenistan. No wonder I love Middle Eastern music, belly dancing and Kuchi jewelry, Pashtun pendants and Turkomen arts. It's in my blood! 9% Western European - Vienna, Prague, and France. Love all things Francophile; Vienna and Prague are on the bucket list, so it's not me. Or rather, it is.  11% Great Britain. Be there, done that, would like to go back someday.

And finally, 1% North African. Ahh, Tunisia, Tripoli and Rabat, I have tried to get there since I was ten years old.  And it follows me -- I've managed the American broadcast of the Cairo Daytime Emmys. I've produced TV specials on Morocco and designed commercials for Algerian Airlines. Coincidence? I am beginning to think not.

The lady above is my twice great grandmother. Family history says she came from North Africa when she was a child. My father's peeps were from Benevenuto in the South of Italy. La familia whispered that Nana Rosaire was a witch who could make animals talk, plants grow and call forth rain. Not sure if that is true or not, but she definitely affects the head dress of her North African ancestors. Between the gele and the earrings, I feel very much in the spirit of her when I dress for ritual here at home.

So my interests are not so far off from my ethnic mix. And I come by my peccadilloes quite honestly. Therefore, tomorrow I will give thanks for many things - for Don's continuing health. For my family who stands by me and my friends who up hold me. For the sosyete who walks with me, and for Chelsea who puts up with me meddling in her life - as a proper Italian godmother should do.

But then, I am Italian through and through. says so. Well, that, and the lasagna I am making for dinner tomorrow.  Avere un Thanksgiving benedetto!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Talismanic Normalcy

I have writers block - and its serious. I have a contract I am supposed to be working on, and I can't find the time, the interest or the spirit to start. Its cold in the studio these days - winter is on its way to Philadelphia, so the studio gets chilly by noon and then its downhill from there. Not very conducive to sitting and writing.

I have turned to other pursuits. I am making talismans. My friend, Andrieh Vitimus is running a 30 day challenge on making talismans.  You are supposed to spend time doing the work, and then WRITE about it. I am kinda tagging alongside, doing the work. I am just not writing about it. I have writers block.

(Deep sigh). It so much effort to even do this little bit. But I am hopeful that this will lead to longer missives and help me find my muse. She has obvious left the premise and is probably having a beer with Mercury. It didn't help that He crashed my computer spectacularly last week. I probably should have treated Him better during the retrograde, but he was killing me softly with his bullsh*t. The consequence of my poor judgement was two hard drives down, one operating system f#$%ed, and all my nifty bits gone. A drift in cyber space. Now I know why Donald was always telling me to back-up the Mothership. It's a been a hard lesson. But well learned.

Because he loves me (and needs me to drive him around right now) The Donald rose to the occasion and got working on my disastrous machine collapse. After much cursing, talking to himself and giving me the hairy-eyeball (wait - that's Andrieh Vitimus's next challenge: Hairy EyeBall Curses!), Obi-Don Kenobi got it all back on track and working and now here I am, writing. Despite the writers block.

The Talismans are lovely - pewter pieces embedded with money, silver and glass eyed amulets for wealth;  Sterling Silver ones with roses, gold and ...ahem...personal effects for love; heavy brass ones for protection (best fed under full moons or they will bite...) and a wood one that is still in the making for general helpfulness. It's Indweller wanted this, so I obliged him with his own little "hobbit house" of a dwelling.  Tiny personal size shrines for the spirits that walk with you. They are available for sale on my Esty store (blantant self promo - click here for your own talisman!). Or you can commission one from me. Himself the Great Gatekeeper loves commission work. Puts His own shine to it, as it were.

I also have a series of shrines you can wear for power, wealth and love. They are int he design stage, but I hope to have them out in a week or so.

And of course, I will begin writing next week. We don't really do much for Thanksgiving. To me, it's a cooking holiday, so I am making lasagna in the mode of my mother (who also never cooked turkey for Thanksgiving) and giving the rest over to the goddaughter to manage. Meanwhile, back to the Table of de Arte and my Talismans. Andrieh would be so proud. But he won't know, since I am not writing about it.

I have Writers Block .