Saturday, May 20, 2017

Of Summer's heat and little girl lost now found~~~~

Hello Darklings,

Well we are finally being blasted by the first really hot day of the year,  I just came back from walking Belladonna and Wiener Dog,  Got up at 6 a.m. Showered, Dressed, slathered Neutrogena Sun Block at 110 level on my face and neck, got my hat and parasol and we were out to door by 7.

A good long walk allowing them to check out the fresh early morning smells and picking up their deposits,  Doyle and I will walk them again at 7:30 tonight when all is cooled down, of course they have the garden as well to check on things.

I had the handyman put up the window screens two weeks ago, and I had the antique screen front door re-screened.   On the back porch door I do have a regular screen door but the dogs like that magic mesh panels they can go in and out when they want,  and my handy man is replacing the cloth mesh that screens the back porch.

Yes it looks like Summer is trying to come to our location,  allergies are flaring,  people wearing skimpy clothing,  watering either very early morning or late evening (late evening best),  and yesterday I could smell the scent of Bar-Be-Que wafting in the air.  

Last night Doyle and I had fun going to the local Vintage Fashion Fair, "an evening in Paris"  it was fun and I found a few things to add to my wardrobe,  there was one velvet evening dress that was just beautiful and it had  a matching hat and purse to go with it, so much to look at so much to choose.  When one is at one of these events one can go just wild and I need to avoid impulse buying. 

But on the way home we stopped by my brother's house to see how Coralline is doing, and got some sad news,  it seems because Coralline could not do some of the projects for several classes because of her broken ankle the school admin is recommending that Coralline repeat her year come next fall,  they don't want to fail her as this was an unfortunate event but these projects are required.  Coralline was a bit upset but said that talking over with her English teacher it means that next Fall she can also work on the school paper as well as extra credit which would be very helpful.   Her parents said that the Principal was not being harsh, just wanting for Coralline to have the best educational advantage.

Privately her mother told me that she  felt it would be good for Coralline to gain more confidence and maturity by holding her back, in a way I could agree, sometimes I feel that we push children out of school far too fast when they may not be ready for some things. Sis feels the same way, too much pressure on children is not a good thing, she's been seeing too much of the after effects from such tactics.

Christopher is already focusing on college and may major in electronic engineering at San Jose U. so they are looking forward to that.     So we celebrated the mixed news with homemade ice cream sundae's.

Sometime ago I wrote about a child's coffin being found under the floor of a basement in a house in San Francisco,  it seems where the homes that were built the land originally was an Odd Fellows cemetery, the mystery was "who was the little 3 year old child" who laid beautifully preserved in her glass topped coffin.

After a lot of research and DNA  her name is Edith Howard Cook who died on Oct 13, 1876 at the age of 3.   And there is a surviving close relative who lives near by, a many times great nephew who had been putting together his family history but that Edith was a missing part.   She is now interred in a Colma cemetery with a headstone with her name on it, no longer lost but now found.

Because of the heat and sun, I'm going to be researching articles about how to keep one's goth skin as pale as possible, some folks like to do a natural "bleaching" or exfoliating but I want to look more into it,  Sun Block of course at it's highest level, wide brim hats, parasols of course, but more is involved so stay tuned.

Later Darklings  

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Of World Goth Day~~~~

Hello Dear Darklings,

Well with Coralline able to get around a bit with her walking boot and my brother finally buying a computer for the family to get everyone started, things are starting to begin to move to what passes for normal, but it will take time,  my brother still has to get a few more electronic things.

I was concerned that Coralline was unhappy that a couple of her Monster High Dolls were stolen that day but she is being philosophical about it, saying that they were one's she bought with her allowance and not one's given to her and she can replace them, especially her favorite "Draculaura",   the costume jewellery was another matter because they broke her jewellery box that was given by my mother before she died.   I took the box to a craftsman that I know and he beautifully repaired it so that you couldn't tell it was damaged, so I'm going to surprise her with it this coming weekend.  

Well I want to give all of you a “Heads Up!”   Next Monday is Goth Day aka World Goth Day on May 22, so time to start getting your Goth on.

Oh for some of you who ask what is “World Goth Day” well let me quote from the Days Of The Year website……

“History of Goth Day

(”It was so close to October that Halloween was knocking at his heart.”
~Barry Eysman, Candles for November)

The history of Goth Day stretches back in odd and meandering paths to history. Musically it can be traced back to 1967 when someone referred to the music of the Doors as “Gothic Rock.” This term was soon being bandied about, used to describe music like Velvet Underground’s “All Tomorrow’s Parties”, and Siouxsie and the Banshee’s described as one of “Goth Rocks Architects”.

But why “Gothic”? It’s an odd term considering that it originally referred to the Visigoths whose claim to fame was sacking Rome. So how did Goths become Goths? Well, we can trace the term back a bit further to 1764, where Horace Walpole wrote a story called “The Castle of Otranto”, granted the subtitled “A Gothic Story” during its second printing. So what is Gothic in this context? It describes a “pleasing sort of horror”, and was seen to be a natural extension of Romantic literature. This, of course, implies a sort of romance with the darker side of life, something that can be said to describe the little blossoms of gloom described at the beginning. 

Goth Day celebrates all these souls, and the part of them that celebrates the darkness within us all through music, art, and media.

How To Celebrate Goth Day

Goth Day is a great time to explore the question that plagues those who do not understand the Goth sub-culture. Who are they and what beauty do they find in the dark? Take some time to explore it on your own, research the history of Goth Culture and the songs, music, movies, and literature that are its hallmarks. You won’t be disappointed, and maybe the next time you see these dark souls, you’ll understand just a little of what they see.

We’ve all seen them, those strange characters that wander our city streets dressed as though they’re on their way to a funeral, or a punk rock show… Or quite possibly both. Their very presence exudes a sort of darkness, steeped in the love of all things morbid, and a seeming love affair with death. Their anthems come from the likes of Siouxsie and the Banshees, Type O Negative, and Bauhaus, bands who seem to be able to perfectly encompass all the things strange. Goth Day encourages us to celebrate these fine fellows, and maybe take a dip into their world ourselves, after all, while the light is lovely, can it not also be blinding?”

The whole idea of being an elder Goth such as myself who is up there in years, is to understand and accept the macabre, to know that there is strangeness out there and that death is just a short dance away.

But it does not mean that we condone abuse, bullying, violence and those things that are morally and spiritually degrading or harmful to oneself, but to be able to balance both the light and the dark, to understand why people are the way they are, to look beyond the surface and know that within the depths of life there are things that are vicious in a way that elder goths like myself learned as a child what to watch for and protect ourselves from.

One of the most gothic lines I’ve ever read or heard came from the mouth of a seemly sweet old lady “It’s dangerous to believe what a person says.  I haven’t for years  I’m quoting Agatha Christie’s Miss Jane Marple, and this character although fiction, is one of the most gothic and yet operates in the light, yet she knows the darkness.  My parents taught that phrase to my brothers, Sis and me years ago.   And over the years it has proven true time and time again.

But World Goth Day also leads into the 3 major Birthdays of 3 of our Titans of Horror Peter Cushing, Vincent Price and Christopher Lee.

Peter Cushing’s Birthday is May 26 and Vincent Price and Christopher Lee’s Birthdays  are May 27, and to honor those stalwarts of Horror and their Older companions Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff and Lon Chaney Jr.  

I talked it over with family and friends and we've decided to celebrate by having a film fest, showing movies and having food and drink for a one week period, then on Saturday evening singing Happy Birthday with a black frosted cake made with chocolate and raspberry filling.

So we'll start the horror  film fest on Monday night Starting with Lugosi’s Dracula and the Cushing and Lee version of Dracula.

 Then on Tuesday night it will be Bela and Boris in The Black Cat and A Comedy of Terror with Boris, Vincent, Peter Lorre and Basil Rathbone.

 Wednesday It will be The Oblong Box with Vincent and Christopher and Scream and Scream again with Vincent, Christopher and Peter. 

Thursday it will be the Mummy with Boris and the Mummy with Christopher.

Friday is going to be an odd mixed bag starting with Mark of the Vampire, and the Return of the Vampire with Bela Lugosi, then to Dracula, Prince of Darkness (love that title) with Christopher Lee, and Frankenstein with Peter and Christopher.

 Saturday is going to be an all-day fest with The Invisible Ray, Frankenstein (Boris) Son of Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, Frankenstein meets the Wolf Man, and House of Frankenstein.

On Sunday to lighten the mood we will start with Abbot and Costello Meet Frankenstein, The Raven(1963) with Boris and Vincent, The House of Long Shadows and completely out of bounds finishing with Young Frankenstein.

It will be having a sort of open house for my family and friends to bring food and drink and it will start early to accommodate the length of the films and on Saturday and Sunday we’ll start it at 12 noon going well into the evening since it does lead into Memorial Weekend.

The whole idea is to comment on the films, the style, the performances, and also about our own inner darkness, although I know with the children who will come on the weekend it will be to watch movies and have fun.

Other folks might want to do it on the weekend with music by those groups mentioned above or do readings of Poe or other macabre authors.  Or do readings of articles that attempt to analyze the Goth sub-culture. 

In a way it would be a fun kick-off to the summer, a chance to do one last time to explore the darkness, before we plunge ourselves to the light of summer of beach parties and picnics,  of water slides and water balloon fights, of skimpy clothing and sun burn.    But in the night it can be of campfires and ghost stories about the Wendigo or the Ghost with one black eye and other things that go bump in the night.   In a way it’s like celebrating Halloween twice a year, or all year round.

If one looks one can find Gothic elements all around us, such as exploring cemeteries or old Ghost Towns,  photographing abandon buildings in black and white, the possibilities are endless you just have to use your imagination to explore that creative darkness.

So I will leave you dear darklings to your own planning.

Later Darklings

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Of Mother's Day, and a walking boot~~~~

Hello Darklings,

Well Mother's Day is tomorrow!  And to make it easy on everyone the Dad's and Uncles will be cooking (bar-be-queing) the Food,  We may have burnt offerings yet.

But for us ladies it is a treat, it's going to be at my brother's home because of Coralline's ankle, and because it's been so chilly and windy we'll be eating in-doors, picnic style, at least for the youngsters and those whose bones don't ache.

My sister-in-law has been doing a lot of hard work these last few months and it's not been easy, that's why I and Sis and Aunt Jane have been helping out. 

Yesterday Coralline was freed from her fiberglass cast and was given a walking boot, which is a whole new learning curve for her, as well as physical therapy exercises,  the twins Robbie and Ryan wanted to see the incision Coralline has and think although gross is also neat, so she is considered a sort of Goddess in their opinion.

She is just happy to be able to get around, her Mother told me she was so happy to finally be able to take a hot shower, granted she had to use a bath bench but she was singing.

I'm going to go with them today, the insurance check came in and the first thing to buy will be new computers for Chris and Coralline and a new printer (two of them) as well.

Chinese Dinner last night was fun and Coralline told me that she does want to be a journalist, where it will take her she doesn't know but that is what she wants to do for her career, be it travel, medical, food, investigative who knows, but the world is her oyster right now and I'm happy for her.

Must go, they are here.

Later Darklings

Friday, May 12, 2017

Of broken ankles and take care of Coralline~~~~

Hello Everyone,

This is going to be a short post, both Coralline's Mom, Coralline and myself are very tired.

I haven't been posting for a good long while because I've been helping out taking care of my niece.

It was the oddest accident.   Coralline and Her Mom were going grocery shopping, the twins were at a soccer game with their Uncle and Aunt, my Brother and Nephew Chris were going some where, but wen Coralline steped down onto the 2nd to last step of their front steps, she must have put her foot down wrong because (according to her mother) they heard a "snap!!" and Coralline was falling and screaming in  pain.  

I was not there and only found out about it later that day,  The paramedics took her to the ER with her parents and brother following in their car,  while they were with her, some vandals took advantage of the situation and got into their un-locked house (in their panic they forgot to lock it) and their computers, laptops, X-box and games and the T.V.'s were stolen, they mess up the place, some of Coralline's costume jewellery and several of her Monster High Dolls were stolen, when someone got suspicious and called the police,  unfortunately they got away with what they had.

It was very stressful.  

Poor Coralline had to have surgery and was in the hospital for several days,  while in the meantime my brother and sister-in-law had to contact the banks and credit card companies and everything.  

They had to work and Coralline had to remain at home in bed so I offered to take care of her, sometimes my sister would trade off with me or the other Aunt, but since I was not working anymore except to be on call, it fell to me, which I didn't mind.  In a way it was fun.

With out a computer or laptop and no Wi-Fi or T.V.  things were a bit frustrating for the child but she hand wrote her homework, and even wrote several articles for the School newspaper about what it is like to be injured and in a sense helpless.   Her school friends came by often to cheer her up which was good.

And finally today Coralline got a walking cast, and she has to do therapy as well, and her parents got the check from the insurance company to replace the stolen items,  so they are going shopping soon.

But it was a long day for everyone,  getting there early, removing the cast, x-rays, tests, evaluations, the walking cast, new equipment for home use.   I came home now for a few minutes and realized I had not been posting for ages, but things will slowly get back to "what passes for normal" bit by bit.

And I am going back to join them for dinner (Chinese) and watch as my brother installs the new T.V.'s and they plug in the new computers.  (we are easily entertained).

I do have a few odds and ends to make mention about.  But I will do that in another post.

Later Darklings

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Of Rain and Film Noir~~~~

Hello Darklings,

I have been a naughty girl (well woman) by not posting so much, but with the damage the rains and winds have done I’ve been busy.

It’s been hard working on my garden, but I’m so glad that my orchid plants and my koi fish have been kept in the green house safe from all the cold and rain and debris, putting heavy chicken wire on the roof of the green house has protected the glass I’m happy to say. 

But I’ve had to put off doing work in the garden because we never know when the next rain storms will come, last night we had an unexpected heavy squall come down with torrents of water and wind.   I sat next to the window in the front parlor and watched as the rain came down in sheets being pushed along by the wind, water running down the steps of the front porch like a water fall, rolling down the driveways like rivers and the street gutters running fast and heavy with the run off.  In a dark Gothic way it was magnificent.

Fortunately no power outages, no trees falling over blocking roads in our area.  And having the fire crackling in the fire place made things feel cozy and comfortable, one would think that someone would be sitting at a small table reading tarot cards on such a wild, wet night.  

But no the dogs were snoozing in front of the fire in contentment, with Wiener dog snoring loudly, and Doyle in his comfy chair dozing and snoring in counter point, the Sunday paper collapsed like a blanket on his lap.   I decided to not turn on the T.V. and instead had a book in my hand to read, but watching the rain proved more fascinating for my night time viewing.

For the last few weeks I’ve been helping my sister until she can hire a good medical report secretary who can also do bookkeeping and maintain appointments for her.   She’s had a few candidates and one is very promising, just need to check out her references.  

Early yesterday evening Television was a bore, so I turned to some DVD’s that we had purchased, maybe I should use the Red Boxes but one never knows the quality of the discs that are distributed.  But I had to buy (a bit at a time) the American Horror Story Series,   but when one starts watching one has to be prepared for a marathon of watching you just can’t stop, you need to see the next “chapter”.   It takes all our strength to not stay up late watching only to wake in the morning exhausted. 

Well we (Sis and I ) started AHS: Coven,  We had seen AHS: Asylum last month, Sis wonders what goes on in the minds of the writers, she’d like to analyze them.  But in seeing Coven, if we ever can arrange it I’d love to go to New Orleans, but not during Mardi Gras that scene is too crazy.   And who knows what delightful little bizarre trinket one will find.   I understand the food is out of this world.  And I’d take in all the tours, even the ghost tours.  

I meant to talk about the S.F. Film Noir Festival that Sis and I attended in January,  once again we stayed at the lovely Hotel Rex and we dressed in our best late 1940’s to mid 1950’s clothing,  and once again we figuratively “drowned” ourselves in Film Noir,  this time with more foreign entries and including more modern entries, that in their own way surprised us, but I personally can’t help but feel that Film Noir should be more “black and white”  which is why in a way “Thunderbolt and Lightfoot”, “Blue Collar” and “Straight Time”  some what disappointed me.  But the others did not.

Gina Lollobrigida was beautiful in “Four Ways Out” and we had the classics such as “Criss-Cross”, “The Asphalt Jungle” and “Kansas City confidential” .

On days when there was no matinee we indulged in shopping and spa treatments and fine dining, but I think I’m going to have to go to the gym and work off a few pounds, not being able to walk the dogs because of the rain had me gain a few and it always is telling at the waist line. 

Rififi had me on the edge of my seat with the 30 minute not speaking portion, “Victoria”, a 2015 film from Germany, did show how Film Noir is developing in the 21st century and although a fantastic film, I have to confess for this Elder Goth I prefer my Film Noir in Black and white and in the gritty times of the 40’s and 50’s.   Yet is was a good across the years selection, and I certain would suggest that you view these films as both vintage and contemporary and how we as a civilization have developed as well.

I have listed here the films that we saw:


But for 10 lovely days Sis and I enjoyed ourselves, shopping, resting, pampering ourselves and even though it rained we had a great time.   And once again Doyle did not disappoint us.  He arranged once again to have us picked in in a classic 1950’s Cadillac complete with Chauffer (his friend who owns the car),  Sis and I came down into the lobby in our best 1940’s clothing paid the bill and had fun seeing a few folks that were there following us to our waiting vehicle, the looks on their faces was priceless.

We drove back across the Bay Bridge, across the section that echoes from the 1930’s and then through the tunnel (aka Time tunnel) across the new span built just a few years ago, the old workhorse bridge now completely gone, vanished, back to our homes and into the 21st century and reality.

But we can dream a little and enjoy it a bit. 

Now the dogs are dressed in their warm coats, and Doyle in his heavy jacket and I am going to put on my very warm coat and we are going to take a much needed walk to work off those 5 pounds.

Later Darklings