70s Festive Holiday Extravaganza, tarot, life improvement

Although the past couple of weeks have been a bit tough (many appointments, severe shoulder pain and the anxiety attack that went with it, furnace problem and the PTSD spike that went with it, early snow), my 70s Holiday Bubble has been even more glorious this year than it was last year.

I began right at the start of November. And I’m so glad I did. One month wouldn’t suffice to enjoy the bliss of the Festive 70s environment I created in my cozy home.

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I’ve filled the house with delicious scents and sparkling joy. I’ve gotten boxes of Pot of Gold chocolates, Black Magic, After Eights.

Classic holiday albums have been playing on my turntable, my 1975 Eaton’s Holiday catalogue is on the coffee table. Total Environment delights. Presents are wrapped in cheerful paper and displayed beneath the tree. One of these gifts from me to me (“It’s just what I wanted!”) is something I hadn’t had since I was a kid: a Barbie doll. But not any old Barbie: a stunning, 70s-tastic 2018 Holiday Barbie.

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It’s the perfect touch to my 70s imbued Festive Season.

I love sitting in the living room, with the fireplace station on the television, while gazing at the happiest tree I’ve ever had. The beautiful, glittering, colorful but much smaller tree I had there last year is now in my lair, because this year, one tree simply wasn’t enough.

All of this has been so sweet to me… It’s sumptuous.

In other news, because I’ll be focused on Masterful for the next two or three months, my Stay Home Vagabond zine has been temporarily put on hold (producing it is more time consuming than I’d anticipated, especially since I expanded it); during this book writing and publishing period, my second and third tier Patreon members will receive Quiet Times newsletters and Mini Poster Prints.

As part of my most recent life improvement strategies, one thing I’ll be doing much less effective immediately is social media, specifically Twitter and Instagram. Twitter has become a maelstrom of negativity and downright lunacy, and whatever one shares there is almost immediately swallowed up by the tsunami of input that is Twitter (of course, that’s the idea: it’s so you keep tweeting and trying to stay on top of the endless barrage of tweets, a virtually impossible “task”). I’m exhausted by this. Utterly. I’m sick to death of it. And Instagram is… meh. It’s very app oriented, and I dislike using my smart phone. On top of that, Instagram actively limits the number of followers who actually see one’s posts (unsurprising: the loathsome FB platform acquired IG).

I’m just… I’m so fed up with it all. It’s life draining. It sucks your energy dry. And for what? I’m rather over this internet Sisyphus deal. I’m not interested in trying other platforms (I’ve already done that ad nauseam).

The world of Twitter and the real world, the material world, are two vastly different things, and I much prefer the latter.

Yesterday and the day before, I was in full recuperation mode due to the stress of the last two weeks. I jotted down notes, enjoyed delicious food, watched movies, relaxed. I barely touched social media, and I felt, well, happier in general. I’ve been ambivalent about social media, social networks, for so long, and increasingly so these past few years… From now on, I’ll be using Twitter mostly to share links to my latest Patreon and WordPress (logospilgrim.com) posts. When I do photo sessions with my phone, I’ll share the results on Instagram.

My online activity will center around Patreon and this website. If you like what I do, if you’re interested in my books and art and photography, please follow this website (via WordPress or email) and/or my Patreon account (some of my Patreon posts are accessible to non-members).

When I want to let my thoughts wander and look at happy things online, I’ll be on Pinterest.

My preferred way of staying in touch with friends is by subscribing to their blogs (via email), or becoming a member of or following their Patreon accounts. Note: I don’t do the YouTube thing much.

So, there it is. I’m going to focus on what works for me.

I’ve been getting back to tarot, to reading it professionally (which I did many years ago). This has been a source of immense pleasure to me. Once I picked up the tarot again, I realized how much I’d missed it.

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I created a tarot page here on my website (still under construction), but I will be giving precedence to live readings. I’ll have a limited number of reading appointments per week.

More Masterful news soon. And eventually more Mozart story news as well.

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Wolfgang, O my fount of pleasure

Welcome to the fondue party, fellow mavericks.

Yesterday, I published the first Wolfgang booklet, a special edition for my Patreon members, and I couldn’t be happier.

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I have been sucked into the story head first, and the delight it’s been giving me is beyond description. I’ve never had so much fun, tasted such pleasure, working on a story. This story encompasses everything I love, everything that makes me happy and interests me, everything that’s affected me and sustained me in my life. I’ll touch upon subjects that are of great relevance to me, such as the arts, creativity, religious emancipation, self-empowerment. I’ll write about sensuality, decadence, Baroque treasures, Vienna, romance, sacrilege, and celebrating earthly existence.

The characters in this book, and their relationships, will embody my personal struggles and triumphs.

Here’s the blurb for my Wolfgang booklets:

“What need have I of an otherworldly paradise: his music is my heaven.” In this daring supernatural tale of love and emancipation, 18th century composers Antonio Salieri and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart are confronted by a startling new reality that will change the course of their lives. Only by embracing the challenges that lie ahead, only by crossing the forbidden boundary that separates the ordinary world from a secret, passionate realm will they experience joys undreamed of by most mortals and attain ultimate fulfillment.

The regular edition of this booklet will be available to everyone once the second booklet is published for Patreon members. Readers will be able to purchase a copy via a direct access lulu link. Whoever wishes to obtain a copy via different means should contact me, and I’ll do my best to set up alternatives for them.

You can become a member of my Patreon for only twelve dollars a year.

Mozart has been filling my heart and days with joy. So much so that I’ll be taking violin lessons again, starting next week.

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When I opened this case again for the first time in a very long time, my eyes watered. Tears were shed. I began learning when I was around eighteen, and then life intervened; this was the case again when I was in my mid-thirties; but third time’s the charm, right? This has always been my favorite instrument. Nothing beats the violin. And I will play it.

I’m also learning Deutsch auch, because what Wolfgang wants, Wolfgang gets, ja?

The Mozart who’s now residing, who’s now firmly ensconced in my head has also been clamoring for Viennese pork schnitzel and sauerkraut, and he will be getting them.

Along with writing this story, I’ve been taking wig test shots, which has been yet more tremendous fun for me. The photo sessions I’ll be doing in the future will be, in essence, Mozartian author portraits.

In these photos, I was wearing the “if I could pick Mozart’s wigs” blue-grey wig.

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While I’m waiting for the incredible red Mozart suit my talented friend Nezumi is making for me, I’ll be experimenting with more wigs (I have a stack of them), and white shirts, and a red velvet robe (which will look especially fetching with my white, traditional 18th century style wig).

I also had fun creating the first issue of my ultra low-tech zine, Stay Home Vagabond, for my Patreon members. Stapling the two photocopied pages together was fabulously, viscerally enjoyable.

I’ve been doing better these days than I have in years. I feel good. I feel happy.

Yesterday, Mr P and I went to a local flea market, and it was fantastic. I got my hands on cherished records, such as Donna Summer’s Love to Love You Baby, and K-Tel’s 1977 Palmares Comique—an absolute treasure that is Québécois au boutte, ostie.

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And, wonder of wonders, both records are clean, no skipping. I have rescued historical jewels, and I intend to care for them as such.

More flea markets adventures will be happening this summer.

Incidentally, there was a glorious 70s-esque aura to our flea market expedition. Total environment bliss. There was a vibe to the place that pushed all the right buttons. At one point, I bought a really neat sun/moon necklace with wooden beads. The man at the table told me that his daughter (whom I’d spoken to not long after Mr P arrived at the flea market and began exploring) wasn’t there, she’d gone to get herself some fries. But he took the price tag off the necklace and said (in French), “Turn around, I’ll put it around your neck,” what was left of his cigarette tucked in the corner of his mouth as he did so, and it was just so damn awesome. I was in my element.

Live your life.

Say cheese.

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new lair

Welcome to the fondue party, everyone.

Well, after weeks of planning, shopping expeditions, and work, I now have a brand-new lair and I couldn’t be happier.

I’m all set for a grand year of writing and creating.

After the tumult and mayhem and exhaustion of the past year and a half, this feels like a blissful breath of fresh air.

Mr P and I are now utilizing the bedroom half of the house to its full advantage. We’re ecstatic about the improvements we’ve made; we just spent three days celebrating with delicious food, cake, and wine, and a lot of recuperation and basking in what we’ve done in our home.

I shared photos of my new space on my Patreon first, and now I’m going to share a few of those photographs with you.

I’d drawn rough plans of what the room would look like with the furniture in it and so on, but I underestimated just how spacious it would be once everything was arranged and set up in here.

I couldn’t be more pleased with the results.

My work area is no longer a cramped corner. I can move freely about the room. It’s amazing.

I’ve been very selective about what I wanted to put on the walls as far as pictures go. I chose some of my very favorite images, some of my most cherished mementos. I put a few of my frames in the hallway, but about 90% of what was on the walls in my old lair will end up in albums, or be given away.

Because one of the walls is taken up by windows, and another by closets in the new lair, when it came to wall space I gave priority to toys, vintage images and items, and a few photographic treasures. There’s one picture of me dressed as Professor Snape, another as Charlie Chaplin, and a third as Pee-wee Herman. I’ll probably end up putting a fourth costume portrait somewhere—when I do Mozart.

Yesterday, I ordered a small vintage Holly Hobbie plate for the new lair… It delights me for reasons that will, I imagine, be self-explanatory:

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There are also some vintage Ziggy collectibles on the way. Such as this small porcelain box:

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As I said, I’m giving precedence to things that give me joy, and 70s collectibles are high up the list.

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The 70s rule.

Without further ado, scenes from my new lair.

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As you can see, much more space. I can’t begin to tell you how much I love it.

I also love sitting next to a window like that. A smorgasbord of writing and treats in store for my Patreon patrons this year. Books, special editions, macramé wall-hangings, cosplay photos, self-portraits, newsletters, doodles…

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Third tier patrons will get all the books, newsletters, original photographs, macramé, reproductions of artwork, original artwork. Second tier patrons will get newsletters, original photographs, access to all the special editions, reproductions of artwork. First tier patrons will have access to all my Patreon blog posts (as do the second and third tier patrons), and access to all the special editions.

I want to write more volumes like The Corner Store Epiphany, which will only be available to patrons.

Speaking of books, here are more positive words about my pride and joy, Rascal: A Manifesto.

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And a review by The Free Thought Prophet:

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So, all in all, it’s an excellent damn start to the spring over here.

I’m writing, I’m drawing again, I’m relaxing, I’m giving total precedence to what is most important and vital to me: creating, loved ones, quiet times, solitude, familiar places, my home and well-being.

Say cheese.

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