Archive | December, 2009

Point #19-Suddenly It’s Christmas…and other holidays, too

23 Dec

And just like that, holy shit it’s Christmas. It is in two days, and I find myself fairly prepared. There will be the typical last minute “AHHH!” of finishing that last gift, and it must be confessed that there will inevitably be at least one gift that will be “wrapped” only in the sense that it will be presented still in the bag in which I brought it home. If I am feeling festive I will wrap the bag tightly around the gift in order to make the concept of “wrapped” more literal. I made most of my gifts this year, ostensibly to live up to my status of a crafty maven, but mostly because I am broke like a bastard. I am pleased with the results, however. Some years, I have felt like a six year giving people a plaster cast of a foot, or a turkey made out of a construction paper cutout of my hand. I have debated each year presenting my mum with a macaroni necklace because, God bless her, she would probably exclaim with glee just as enthusiastically as she did when I was a tiny tyke. Since my burgeoning skill with glitter glue and popsicle sticks, my work has taken on a whole new level, and I think it shows.

This year also saw me handcraft a lovely dinner for my family and some family-type friends for the last night of Hanukkah, which I also celebrate courtesy of my Jewish boyfriend. The dinner was a rousing success, and I am determined to believe that my friends going home to find that they had been robbed to be utterly unrelated to the bad luck of having been at my house. (Seriously, it was scary for them, and I hope everyone can spare a good thought or two for them this year.) As part of the Hanukkah celebration, I thought that having yarmulkes was in order. Unfortunately, that fell further and further by the wayside as the dinner got closer. In the end, in desperation and a fervent hope that a good ol’ fashioned Old Testament God wouldn’t put the smackdown on me, Torah-style, for blasphemy, I made yarmulkes out of discs of cardboard, stapled into a shallow cones and…um…spraypainted black. This was far from elegant, but did the trick, I feel. In other miraculous news, when my camera batteries ran out the first night of Hanukkah, and I had no more, I put in some old ones that had run out previously and then sat for several weeks. Weirdly, they lasted exactly eight nights, giving out just as I took my last Hanukkah shots the final night. A modern day miracle, indeed. It mightn’t have worked. It was hit or mitzvah. *rim shot*

Finally, in today’s epically long update, I had what I consider to be an epic win in the blogging world. I had one of the good folks at Regretsy comment on one of my posts. I feel like I sang karaoke and had Alannis Morrisette come up to me and say, “Word.” I may have literally have gone “squee!”. I’m not proud of that, but sometimes the squee just happens. I seriously love that site so much, I want to make something super wrong and scary just to be featured on it. Plaster cast of my bajingo to follow.

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Point#18-In which I wish I was a Muppet

15 Dec

I have been obsessed with all things Muppetty of late. I have no clue why. It started as most of my cyclical obsessions do, with a casual mention that I follow up on and thus fall into a gaping chasm of fandom from which the only escape is me being distracted from it by a random article hit on Wikipedia. In this case it was rabies, which led to Cujo, which led to The Dead Zone, which naturally led to Martin Sheen and you get the picture…

The original obsession du jour began with a brief arc on the webcomic Something Positive in which the main character is determined to make his friend cry at the mere playing of a song, which works. It also backfires when the song proves too sad even for him. Armed only with the name of the song, I hit YouTube, knowing my schmoop gland was probably going to get a severe workout.

Do not, under any circumstances, listen to the song, “A Boy and his Frog” unless you hate your heart. You know, cuz of all the breaking.

Man, this song was carefully handcrafted from fine Corinthian tears and bathed gently in the light of baby seal eyes for an extended period of time. It was then handwashed in some cancer of the puppy and presented on a bed of Nicholas Sparks novels. I wept, I sobbed. I had to go lie down for awhile. And then, because I apparently hate myself, I proceeded to watch all the coverage of Jim Henson’s funeral that I could find on YouTube. Yes, I watched Big Bird sing “Bein’ Green”. Yup, everyone singing “Just One Person”, too. As my own personal holiday experience every year is watching Emmet Otter’s Jug Band Christmas, I was happy to see Jerry Nelson and Louise Gold’s rendition of “River Meets the Sea” performed. The sea in this scenario was the wave of saline sorrow that my childhood washed away in. I was comforted (because these things comfort me) that I have found the song I want sung at my funeral.

I am a sappy woman. I am prone to the shedding of tears to the extent that Publix grocery store commercials can cause my tear ducts to go into the sort of overdrive usually reserved for one’s own parents or Princess Diana. The schmoop-n-sap is strong in this one and I am unapologetic. I have been accused of being nigh on a crybaby, usually by people, not effected by this curse, that do not realise that easy tears, like laughter, friendship, and the need to snack, are not voluntarily. They are a reflex for which some people are overqualified.

What does this have to do with my Muppetty aspirations? Other than obvious-perfect hair, can’t gain weight, loved by all, if I die, someone else can voice me and I live on forever-is quite simply: no damn tear ducts so I can finally shut my whiny ass up.

Point#17-Put It Out There!

7 Dec

Thanks to the Incomparable April, I now have an Etsy site up and a-runnin’. It’s weird and fun and scary all at once to know that our work is out there in the open. I cannot have done this without the photography, business savvy, encouragement, financial backing, and general all around wonderfulness of April. She is a true friend, and even as different as we are, I can’t imagine anyone would be a better partner in this venture. I sometimes wonder why she even needs me, she is so capable and talented herself. But I am going to do my best to keep tricking her into thinking I am good to keep around! Sssshhh, don’t tell!

So we have up several pieces and I think they will be well received. I am shying away from doing a lot of “advertising” here, but please do take a look, Fearful Readers, if you’ve a mind to, and let me know what you think.

In other news, I have decided to create a small booklet of mad drinks I have concocted using only cheap hooch and my own boredom. As the years have passed, I have found myself trying ever more ambitious combinations of weirdo drinks, usually to mask the wretched flavour of whatever bottom shelf rotgut I can afford. I still say, good booze is for wussies. If it’s good enough for the hobos, it’s good enough for me. I have created such wonders as a Berry Badranath, a Happy Homemaker, a Harvest Rum Punch, and a Shut Up, It’s Christmas. Today, I needed to conduct an experiment that required the consumption of a very large mocha and peppermint coffee drink with whisky in that I like to call a Blasted Santa. It was vital that I know how fast a Starlight mint melts in a hot liquid. No one needs to know why…just trust me. Tomorrow I will explain how the sky is blue using only a gin and tonic.

Point #16-Ya Gotta Love a Parade

6 Dec

The Santa Parade in my town marched for the 82nd time this past Saturday and I just couldn’t be more damn giddy. Our little home town offering is a blend of symmetry, precision, kitchen table crafts with the kids, local royalty, and a dash of good ol’ fashion crazy. It was my darling boyfriend’s first live parade ever, a grievous childhood oversight. Having grown up in Miami, where they have “real” parades, he has more of a New Yorker’s point of view-that it’s easier to see on t.v. anyway and less people to smell. The idea of getting up and traipsing downtown to watch a bunch of people wearing shorts and Santa hats jingling bells and trying to look officially parade-like was rather silly. But he was game, and so off we went.

After a three mile walk from a friend’s house to avoid downtown parking, we found a nice little spot at the end of the parade route. I’ve never really felt shorted by this location and this year was no exception. The smiles are as big, folks are at the end of the need to ration their bead and candy stash, and the fact that the end is in sight gives every performance a certain extra something. Highlights included a creepy Santa muppet thingie being waved out a window, the ALWAYS wonderful Righteously Outrageous Twirling Corps, whose members are indeed as fabulous as their name would imply (for “fabulous” read “gay gay gay!”, and they rock) and the St. Pete Pride group, responsible for the local Gay Pride parade, who handed out candy cane stapled to, wait for it, Macy’s coupons. Never, EVER send a straight man to do a gay man’s job. They just do it so much better. My homemade reindeer antlers were a big hit, and I highly recommend them for any parade goer, young or old. Start with super cheap ($1) antler headbands from any dollar store or other (I got mine at Target in the dollar bins) and go insane with puffy paint. I firmly believe these got me more beads than boobs would have at Mardi Gras. I got a pic with the ROTC boys and all and all, a great time was had by the both of us. Santa was too skinny, but I think he might have eating my bulimic gingerbread men.

Point #15-Interactive Stuff is Fun

5 Dec

I won’t make any secret of my ambition. I aspire to have people come follow my pearls of wisdom (ok, maybe kinda pretty pebbles you find at a beach) and make a name for myself. I find that I am having the most fun in this endeavour with my Facebook group, also called Points for Creativity. I like the interactive aspect, the give and take with other crafty yahoos, the posting of pictures and sharing of stuff. At some point, I would like this blog to be more like that, I just have to get there.

This weekend I am having a Holiday CraftCraptacular at my home. The goal is, of course, to craft crap for the holidays. The big draw for me, though, will be the sitting down with other crafters and the sheer fun of that interaction. Since I know that not everyone who reads me here at my little corner of the world wide web can get to my house, I challenge you to host a little CraftCraptacular of your own. Enjoy the camaraderie of getting together with folks of like mind. Urge them to bring snacks, tributes of livestock, and lavish gifts of cash. Wear a humourous outfit, and act nonplussed when it is mentioned. Fart often. Hide in small spaces and leap out at them. It is possible that some of these suggestions will lose you a friend or two, but they will all talk about it for years to come.