a little humor for a day of poultry…

Benny Hill tattoo

when i came across this person & this image…i kind of sat on it for a bit, not sure when to use it for a post…and then i realized how apropos it is for the day before Thanksgiving – a time when we spend large concentrated amounts of time with our families and relatives that we&#39re glad to see…but it also can be maddening. maybe you&#39re visiting in-laws, or your divorced sets of parents, or people you&#39ve &#39adopted&#39 for the holiday. and so i realized how connected this image is in the grand scheme of things.

the main thing you have to do is MAINTAIN YOUR SENSE OF HUMOR.

this guy obviously carries around Benny Hill and his sense of humor emblazoned on the circumference of his calf for some very important reason. and he&#39s absolutely right.

i must admit that slapstick comedy is really my least favorite – but my dad loves Benny Hill, and dissolves into giggles when watching the Benny Hill reruns like a little boy (unlike the 75 year old man that he actually is) and so i figured that i would encourage everyone who is visiting in-laws, or future in-laws, or the complicated dynamics of your very own family tomorrow for Thanksgiving – to just embrace the whole glorious messiness of it all, and pretend that you&#39re in one of those quirky independent films and sitting in the audience laughing at your own plight, and just enjoy the hell out of it all.

at home she…feels like a tourist

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ok, i couldn&#39t resist the nod to the post-punk band Gang of Four song from the 80&#39s when i titled this post…

because it made me think of how i feel, when as a formerly embedded NYC dweller, i see products that remind me of the place as if it was not just a city – but a former lover; i get all anthropomorphic about my emotions attached to that city as if it were a person…and when i see things that harken to the place, i get these weird pangs – kind of like brazilians describe the word and the sentiment of &#34saudade.&#34

so the other day i ran into this little genius paper (yes, paper!) clutch by Kate Spade while out shopping, and i felt like i had to have it. it looked just like a map! i didn&#39t buy it…but it conjured up a memory so strong that i have to admit, i was a little bit obsessed.

when i first moved to NYC after college, i had a very certain street map (which of course i didn&#39t DARE pull out in public!) after i began to find my way around the concrete jungle grid, i still kept that map close at hand. one summer day while in a sublet in Westbeth i had the windows open, and a big gust of wind blew my beloved map right out the window and onto the abandoned train tracks several floors below (which is now part of the High Line). i was CRUSHED. the torture! it sat there for days. i mean…i *could have just gone to any news stand on any street and bought another map; but the truth is, i was attached to it, and it represented my small-town-to-big-city struggle – not to mention progress.

it sat there on those train tracks for 2 days. i looked at it; *LE SIGH.

then on the third day, i was looking out the window, and i saw another gust of wind carry it into the air and jettison it down to the sidewalk…several more floors down. i RAN to the elevator and hauled ass to get that map; and i did. it was no easy feat before it got blown away into the skyscraper landscape.


i still have that map to this day, 25 years later.

Aug 2013
AUTHOR Lizz DeLera
COMMENTS No Comments

when it rains…do a rain dance

rain in spain

ok – so i did something that i said i would not do since starting this blog…and that is…that i fell off the wagon a little.

i&#39m actually pretty disappointed; because it&#39s the one thing that i look forward to, and even though i&#39m still &#39happenstancing&#39 daily, i let the grinding gears of daily life and a bunch of things i needed to handle get in the way of my blogging. so… let&#39s not do that anymore!

thought this photo summed up exactly how i felt; a little puddle of rain in a deluge, that was a relief.

ok, so i&#39m not really in Spain. (but i wish that i was.)

in fact it actually rains very seldom where i live…therefore fortuitous that the skies opened up and let my creative juices downpour, as they normally would. and not get stuck in some billowing rain clouds that are hovering… and needing to let loose with their mammoth, cleansing droplets.

most of you may already know that negative ions produced by rain (and water in general) actually have positive effects (increasing seratonin) on humans.

ergo…negative can sometimes = positive.

my grandmother used to do a cool thing when i was little; whenever she heard the forecast predict rain…she sent me & my sister out to do a little &#39Native American&#39 rain dance (and by the way, we are not Native American.)

and we danced; and it did.

so 9 times out of 10…we thought we actually had the power to make it rain.

clever woman.

Jul 2013
AUTHOR Lizz DeLera

places, thoughts

COMMENTS 2 Comments

note to self: fake it…til’ you make it

bulletin board shoe

so this is how creatives&#39 minds work:

we&#39re all having a discussion…one person refers to the &#34fake it until you make it&#34 phenomenon in regards to getting over a broken relationship, another person feels the urge to write that on a Post It note in their own font (me, in this case) and then another person comments on the design of the other&#39s shoe…and remarks that since the heel happens to be made of cork – wouldn&#39t it be amazing to be able to design a cork platform shoe… where you can thumbtack your notes to your shoe…and i say &#34wait. that can be done.&#34

which of course leads to me taking off my shoe, and us doing a photo shoot at our desk, with several people art directing the photo shoot.

voilá! a bulletin board shoe.

p.s. it needs to be said that i had some nearly identical shoes back in 6th grade…which can only mean that 70&#39s are BACK. The Circle of Life.

overheard…Game of Thrones mania

midget porn and your mother doesn’t mix. i am NEVER doing that again.

-Karen, talking about her 21 year old son watching Sunday&#39s epic episode with her

if that girl or any of her dragons get killed… i’m gonna be PISSED.


Jun 2013
AUTHOR Lizz DeLera
COMMENTS 1 Comment

happy happenstancing…especially today

Lizz at Starbucks

ok, let&#39s have a little fireside chit chat. (ok, there&#39s no fireplace, but can you at least pretend?)

in the spirit of happenstancing…today is the best day to illustrate the most extreme example of why i&#39m preternaturally wired for this stuff.

today is my birthday, and really, i came into this path of life through an episode of happenstancing. well, i mean, we all do; but i&#39m adopted (no, please don&#39t grill me on the details!) but let&#39s suffice to say that apparently i could have had 3 completely different lives, and as a result of happenstancing, i got an amazing set of parents & sister – and the life i was supposed to end up with – not the other 2 options. and…i was accidental.

the art of the accidental.

my parents weren&#39t the next in line to &#34get me.&#34 and so when circumstances changed on a dime…there i was, making a grand entrance with nothing but the clothes on my back. quick! everyone scramble to get stuff! – there&#39s a baby showing up on the scene!

some people hate their birthdays – but i don&#39t! wanna know why? because:

a) i&#39m glad that i got got to be born at all, and have a nice life. i could just not exist right now.
b) the age/number thing really is irrelevant; because it mostly depends how you feel in your head.
c) i feel like i&#39ve done some cool things so far; and hopefully more to come. much more, in fact.

kind of feel like a cat who&#39s had 9 lives already.

i&#39ve been an equestrian, ran off to NYC as a naive 21 year old, made a lot of art, collected interesting people, learned a lot of lessons the hard way, partied with celebrities, flew to Venezuela to visit a sailor i barely knew, had a lot of love come and go, met an australian in a bar on Park Avenue, married him and went off to live on the other side of the world, had a great daughter, unmarried the australian, moved to some interesting cities, brought my career out of the ashes, and finally found love again.

there&#39s more, but you get the idea.

so the moral of the story is…sit back, have a latte, or a cocktail or whatever, and think about what your #happenstancing is.

May 2013
AUTHOR Lizz DeLera
COMMENTS 5 Comments

there *can be marbles… in a marble cake

magic grandma

this post is dedicated to my other grandmother, (as opposed to the other one from my original happenstancers post) who died when was 10 or 11 from colon cancer. it was an epic loss. it would be her birthday today.

i owe a lot of who i am as a creative person and as an observer, inventor, ideator and imaginator.
(i don&#39t think that&#39s really a word…but let&#39s just go with it, shall we?)

she was a small town woman, who used her imagination to make the coolest things out of the most humble of resources. yes, she worked for the Sears catalog outpost store in our little town, and sold Avon on the side…but that&#39s not really what she was all about.

she made dolls out of carved, dried apples (their heads)… sewed the grooviest of Barbie clothes, and made side tables out of empty instant coffee jars that she stcked, glued together like the Leaning Tower of Pisa, and stained. oh, and the clothespin doll Christmas ornaments. and the &#34balloon sea serpents&#34 on a string, pulling it around the kitchen to entertain me. she gave me classic books, and lots of markers to color with. her basement was a mecca filled with every craft material you coul think of: boxes of sequins…hat pins…yarn, string, styrofoam. It was HEAVEN. she had a jewelry box full of shiny, colorful costume jewelry pins that i loved to play with…and some cool sequin hats. the odd thing is that she wasn&#39t really a very flashy person – but it was all so enchanting. she glued gorgeous glass &#34gemstones&#34 to my Christmas packages, no matter how simple the gift was. i still have them, in a jar.

she taught me to be kind to people, she taught me patience (of which i still have a lot) and that when you had little or no money, you could still:

a) make something
b) entertain yourself.

she never cared if we made a mess, or if a project didn&#39t quite turn out &#34perfectly.&#34 it was the doing that was important.

the best memory of all was when she let me help her bake a cake, and took a Duncan Hines Marble cake mix out of the cupboard – let me help her mix it until it went into the oven, and she sent me off to play while it baked.

when she called me to pull it out of the oven…she ceremoniously sliced it, and, POOF! like MAGIC! in each slice were some beautiful, swirly marbles.
(ok, don&#39t get excited! she didn&#39t let me eat them, i didn&#39t swallow any.)

believing in a little bit of magic never hurt anyone.

i drew this in college with a ballpoint pen for a drawing class with a maniacal italian professor. he pushed me, and i&#39m glad he did. ball point pens? we thought he was MAD.
my fine arts professor hated it; and whined that it was too &#34graphic-design-y.&#34 my other favorite professors loved it, and upon the gallery showing, it brought my father to near tears.

my father is fond of telling me in his Pennsylvania Dutch vernacular:
&#34you&#39re my mother upset.&#34
(which of course translates to meaning that we&#39re just alike.)

May 2013
AUTHOR Lizz DeLera

people, thoughts

COMMENTS 1 Comment

sound byte

apparently Restoration Hardware only hires RETAIL ROYALTY.

-me, said to James Ford

May 2013
AUTHOR Lizz DeLera

sound bytes, thoughts

COMMENTS No Comments

sound byte

clearly, they&#39re spinning on a whole other merry go round…


Feb 2013
AUTHOR Lizz DeLera

sound bytes, thoughts

COMMENTS No Comments

pick up…your heart

dropped heart
dropped and found, 2012

some of you may know that i have a penchant for finding and visually recording &#34dropped&#34 things. i find them fascinating for the fact that it says something profound about that person&#39s lifestyle and daily trajectory. and i love the irony of this icon as a dropped heart, for the metaphor in it.

happy valentine&#39s day.

i debated on how personal to make this post – but what the hell…i&#39m a blogger, and you expect some poignancy from me, right? you would get it from me in person…so i shouldn&#39t shortchange you here, right?

i spent pretty much my entire growing up in romantic situations…from right about sixth grade on…nonstop. never was left out, never left behind, always in those snow queens and heart queens and prom queen dance things…i loved boys, i continued to love boys, and i love men – they are largely great creatures, in my opinion. without a shred of irony i can say that nine times out of ten…i was the heartbreaker, mostly not the heartbreakee (albeit not always proud of that).
by and large i had some cool and really good relationships and feel like even now i still carry around good things i learned from those people. i felt like i had as good command of the love landscape as one could have.

but… when you find yourself suddenly on the other side of having given up your home, your friends, your country, and your career…not to mention leaving your family… for the sake of pursuing the notion of storybook romance – and that person smashes your soul, and treats your sacrifice with a cavalier disregard, and destroys your self esteem in the process with a buffet of other women, it is difficult to climb out of the abyss and – in a rude awakening…find that the enticing, great world of dating that you navigated so easily beforehand…is now a different world entirely.

another planet, as a matter of fact.

and suddenly…you&#39re older – and the rules have clearly changed.

so much so that (***shhhh, this was a well-kept secret!) for a long while… i was so disgusted with the entire landscape of the issue-ridden dating pool…that i made it a personal, silent custom to call out sick from work on Valentine&#39s Day. As in…sick with a generically broken heart.

i guess the motto there is &#39nothing ventured, nothing gained.&#39 at least, that was my philosophy as i threw caution to the wind. and now i have the greatest valentine of all; my daughter.

it is on this Valentine&#39s Day that i can also say proudly that i&#39ve found what i thought was impossible; unselfish love…support, vast understanding, great romance & Cosmo-worthy sex.

there, i said it.

make this day whatever it can be for you – and know that if it&#39s a lonely one – you, too, can come out triumphant on the other side.

i&#39ve always said: i love LOVE. no matter who it belongs to.

i hope it belongs to you, today.

Feb 2013
AUTHOR Lizz DeLera
COMMENTS No Comments