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May 18, 2009

Mysterious book promo
Posted by Teresa at 09:55 PM * 89 comments

Dear Steven Swiniarski, a.k.a. S. Andrew Swann:

Am in receipt of yr hermetically sealed bone-shaped puppy biscuit mailing. (Doggy-treat packaging label: www.RUaWerewolf.com; return address on mailing envelope: Sparky McNachman, 851 Cumberland Drive, Sunnyvale CA 94087.) Yog and I have been to the werewolf site, figured out your latitude and longitude, enciphered numbers, and countdown puzzles, and concluded that you’re throwing a book promotion party on Saturday afternoon of this year’s Marcon.

You’re not entirely without clue, but I have to ask:

1. Why the wolfy promo site? The party encoded in it is for Prophets: Apotheosis. The wolfy book won’t be released until August.

2. What am I supposed to do with this puppy biscuit? It’s way too big for small Aggie Maggie. Should I forward it to Jordin Kare, or does he already have one?

Signed, Puzzled in Brooklyn

Comments on Mysterious book promo:
#1 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: May 18, 2009, 11:49 PM:

It's supposed to be for a howlin' good time?

#2 ::: Jaydee ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 12:01 AM:

Sorry, not getting the sarcasm. I guess I'm outta the loop on that one. Looks like in indie publisher trying to start a buzz in really amateurish way, but still... missing what I'm supposed to be seeing.

#3 ::: A.J. ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 12:38 AM:

Jaydee,

Maybe you get more dog biscuits in the mail than I do...

#4 ::: Leslie in CA ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 12:55 AM:

Speaking of small Aggie Maggie (whose Flickr set is all kinds of adorable), how is she doing on the not-biting front?

#5 ::: Andrew Plotkin ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 01:16 AM:

I am *not* a werewolf.

#6 ::: ConstanceZEdwards ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 01:18 AM:

[delurk]
You know you're too much of a BtVS geek when you read something referencing werewolves then parse the mailing address as "Sunnydale" rather than "Sunnyvale"...
[/delurk]

#7 ::: Lois Fundis ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 02:08 AM:

Break the puppy biscuit into smaller bits for Aggie Maggie. It should last her several days, I guess.

#8 ::: Clifton Royston ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 02:15 AM:

No no no. He wants you to turn Agnes into a hamster werewolf; she could then eat the biscuit. This transformation would also overcome her vampirish tendencies, at the cost of monthly rampages through the neighborhood, surely an acceptable trade-off.

#9 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 03:06 AM:

Clifton: "surely an acceptable trade-off."

For whom?

(Well, the NY Post, for one; I can see the headlines now: Tiny Werewolf Loose in Brooklyn! Residents Demand Hizzoner's Help!)

#10 ::: Alison Scott ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 03:43 AM:

I'm pretty sure that if an author's promo is sufficiently head-scratching to warrant a blog post on Making Light, that counts as TOTAL WIN in promo terms. Right? More comprehensible would have been less effective?

#11 ::: Paul Herzberg ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 05:41 AM:

You know you've been looking at bad joke sites too long when you want to correct Andrew Plotkin's post to "I used to be a werewolf but I'm alright na-oooooow!!".

Possibly adding "Draw blood!" for the Zevon fans...

#12 ::: janeyolen ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 06:19 AM:

I got one, too. Put it in the PO's revolving file.
No dog and knew no one involved in the book.

Jane

#13 ::: Chris Gerrib ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 09:17 AM:

Yeah, I vote for "successful promotion." It was weird enough for you to talk about, thus getting free publicity, but not offensive.

#14 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 09:58 AM:

Jane, what we now know is that you're not a werewolf.

Leslie, it looks like Aggie Maggie's given up her career as a phlebotomist. I think the root of her biting was poor judgement about how hard she's chomping down. Sometimes when I give her a snack, she'll bite down on it so lightly that she doesn't take hold of it the first several tries.

How is she otherwise? Madly athletic. Graceful. Part toon. She loves her hamsterball above all things, and will jump into it any time it's offered. Hiro occasionally wanted to do morning hamsterball runs, but Aggie's up and wheedling for one every morning, and will happily do several long runs in an evening.

When you return her to her cage, she mopes for half a minute, then starts wheel-bashing instead. She'll run in it all night, and has worn it out. I'm having to fix it every morning, and am looking to buy a new one. As a change of pace, she sometimes has wrestling matches with her wooden escher-ball.

The other toonish thing about her is her expressiveness. I believe I've mentioned her very mobile ears. Last night, when I mystified her by flipping open the top of her cage, I noticed that she does a "worried eyebrows" expression. Her fur's so uniformly short, thick, and plushy that you can see fine color changes in it when the muscles underneath make it bunch up. Last night, when I puzzled her, darker "worried eyebrows" lines appeared above her eyes, right where a cartoonist would put them. Once she'd sussed out that the top was off the cage, the lines disappeared. I held out my hand, offering to let her climb down on it, and the lines reappeared. Then she stepped onto my hand, nothing bad happened, and they disappeared again.

Constance: busted!

Aggie as a werewolf is a scary thought. It'd be like having the Warner Tasmanian Devil around, except the path of destruction would only be 2.5" wide.

#16 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 11:59 AM:

Teresa @ 14... It'd be like having the Warner Tasmanian Devil around, except the path of destruction would only be 2.5" wide.

Only?

Jim would probably say that a 2.5" hole in a human body, or in a submarine hull, can lead to all sorts of unpleasantness.

#18 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 12:11 PM:

Coming soon on the SciFi Channel... "Wereplatypi"...

#19 ::: Bruce Arthurs ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 12:14 PM:

Wait a minute now. Aggie Maggie is a fur-covered animal, who's been known to bite people.

So... if she was infected by a werewolf... wouldn't she turn into a human?

I'm thinking a very small, hyperactive, 9-year-old girl, probably.

(In typing this comment, I originally typoed "werewolf" as "wereworf". That's the trouble with my generation; you just can't get away from the Trek, no matter how hard you try.)

#20 ::: KeithS ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 12:23 PM:

Bruce Arthurs @ 19:

No, no, the "were" part of the word means man. So werewolves are humans who temporarily turn into wolves, werehamsters would be humans who temporarily turn into hamsters (and you thought you had conservation of mass problems before), and wereworfs would obviously be humans who temporarily turn into Klingons.

I don't have the right linguistic background to work out what a hamster that turned into a wolf, or hamster that turned into a human would be called.

#21 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 01:39 PM:

Oh, so that word 'weregeld' I keep hearing is a guy who turns into a horse...male, but not a stallion anymore?

(I know what it really means. I just couldn't resist.)

Teresa, if I ever do VP, I'm going to lay in a supply of Thing Biscuits...and anyone who eats one will be Tested immediately!

#22 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 01:53 PM:

WOTS shorter version: "Weregeld, that's a guy who turns into a eunuch, right?"

#23 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 02:00 PM:

Joel, that works for me. The most stressed I ever saw Hiro (short of his final illness) was when a vet examined him via massage for tumors or other irregularities. I've never gone back to that vet.

Bruce, Keith, Xopher: There's no Anglo-Saxon word (yet) for hamster, so the nearest substitutes would be cricetus, the genus, or aureus, the Syrian hamster's species.

Hmmm. On second thought, the nearest linguistic approximation would be hamster, originally a Germanic term signifying a miser or hoarder.

#24 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 02:05 PM:

Xopher @ 22... Is the opposite of a weregeld called a werewithal?

#25 ::: KeithS ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 02:18 PM:

Teresa Nielsen Hayden @ 23:

So, contra Xopher, werehamster and weregeld might be related terms? Golden.

Back to Bruce's question. Hamsterwer doesn't really quite roll off the tongue, and hamsterwolf sounds like a monstrosity that was too cute to make it into bestiaries.

I should really stay away from linguistics; I feel like a danger to myself and others.

#26 ::: Bruce Arthurs ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 03:40 PM:

Well, if we use "lycanthrope", instead of "werewolf", as our starting model, we might end up with...

..."anthrocricetus"? (Man-hamster?)

Hmm, I think technically that mixes Latin and Greek. So be it. I am large, I contain multitudes. When you're talking "man-hamsters", I think mixing Latin and Greek is not inappropriate.

#27 ::: Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 04:11 PM:

Andrew: I am *not* a werewolf.

And I am *so* not the Thing.

#28 ::: Ginger ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 04:17 PM:

Maybe it's just me, or the end of a long day, but "man-hamsters" is too funny.

#29 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 04:36 PM:

Manster vs Mansquito about who'll have that date with Womantis?

#30 ::: Joel Polowin ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 05:06 PM:

"Cheeble! ... My hamster-sense is tingling!"

#31 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 05:40 PM:

TNH: If there's no Anglo-Saxon word for hamster yet, might I point out that it looks like a Middle English feminine proper noun. The masculine being, of course, hammer.

I should note that legister is recorded in the OED (once) as the feminine of lector (as opposed to its normal use as a variant of "legist".

#32 ::: Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 05:41 PM:

TNH writes at #23:

There's no Anglo-Saxon word (yet) for hamster, so...

Yet?

Is someone making up new Anglo-Saxon words? Who is empowered to do this? Is the process something like getting a saint canonized?

#33 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 05:44 PM:

Fragano @31:

Excellent point.

As you know, Fragano*, that "ster" suffix still endures in Dutch. I am not, properly, a bookbinder, but rather a bookbindster.

The only word I can think of in (relatively) modern English that uses it is "spinster".

-----
* I have always wanted to say that† in context
† well, actually, to someone named Robert, but needs must

#34 ::: Bruce Arthurs ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 06:06 PM:

Hmmm....

Giant-Size Man-Hamster

Anthrocricetus Vs. Giant Octopus

There are possibilities here.

Okay, I didn't say good possibilities....

#35 ::: James D. Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 06:15 PM:

I expect the AngloSaxon for Hamster is sædđeof.

#36 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 06:51 PM:

Abi @ 33... What about blondsters? I've long thought it could also be the title of a most excellent film that'd have made Roger Corman proud.

#37 ::: lorax ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 06:56 PM:

abi @33:

"Trickster"?

#38 ::: KeithS ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:04 PM:

abi @ 33: Pollster?

#39 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:15 PM:

Master?

#40 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:16 PM:

abi #33: Quite modern English. The first time I got married (in Jamaica), my premarital status was recorded as "bachelor" and that of my bride as "spinster"

Lorax & KeithS: "Trickster" and "Pollster" are common gender.

#41 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:18 PM:

No, folks, those aren't the same suffix. Hers is feminizing. It's like '-ess'; it's a feminizing suffix in 'actress', but not in 'dress' or 'stress' or 'duress' or 'confess'.

'Seamstress' is a weird case. I bet it came about because someone thought 'seamster' (feminized version of *'seamer') didn't sound feminine enough, so they added the '-ess' suffix. That way you know it's a female woman GIRL seamer, you see.

(And no, I don't know that 'seamer' is unattested, but I hypothesized its existence without ever seeing it, so I felt obliged to mark it as such.)

#42 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:20 PM:

Serge #39: Cher maître, it disappoints me to point out that "master" is masculine.

#43 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:26 PM:

Xopher, #41: In the interest of messing with people's heads, I have been known to describe men in the SCA who make their own and their ladies' garb as "good seamstresses". Because honestly, I don't think there is a masculine equivalent; "tailor" carries the assumption of specializing in men's clothing only, whereas a seamstress can sew anything.

#44 ::: -dsr- ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:30 PM:

Dear S. Andrew Swann, aka Steven Swiniarski,

Have recently enjoyed your _The Dragons of the Cuyahoga_ and _The Dwarves of Whiskey Island_, despite both being inexplicably set in fantasy city called Cleveland. Ignoring PR move as have not received any bones, nor have dogs to reward. Carry on.

#45 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:30 PM:

Fragano @ 42... Zut! Saperlipopette!

#46 ::: KeithS ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:37 PM:

Fragano Ledgister @ 40 and 42:

Ah, yes, of course. Not thinking there.

Ma: masculine, master: feminine; of course! (ducks and runs)

Xopher @ 41:

Probably by analogy to master/mistress.

Lee @ 43:

I've been trying for the last few years to think of a masculine form of seamstress, and I've given up.

#47 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:39 PM:

The earliest use for "seamer" in the OED is 1843 in the sense of "a seaming-machine" and 1952 in the sense of "a seam bowler, or a delivery by a seam bowler". "Sempster" or "seamster" dates to as early as 995.

The OED states of sempster "Originally a designation of a woman, but in OE. already applicable to a man. Now only applied to one of the male sex, seamstress being commonly used for a female sewer."

#48 ::: Clifton Royston ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 07:53 PM:

Keith: Tailor? (No, it's not symmetrical or equivalent, but that's English as she is spoke.)

#49 ::: Paula Lieberman ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 09:01 PM:

I am a geek... MARKETING MORONS/sales and marketing weasels are my natural enemies....

(Actually, I worked closely with the marketing department for the first four years I was at GTE Government Systems... and worked in market research for several years in the 1990s. But I do not love, emphatically not, marketing campaigns that regard my time and intellectual energy as commercial property owned by commercial organizations, for them to make money off of, regardless of my sentiments in the matter....)

I do not love all that "creating buzz" stuff... kinaesthetically the word "buzz" is one that annoys me, it sensorily in its sound mimicks the nerve-rasping audio signals of annoying often biting insects that have a general aversion to hearing them/their being in my vicinity.

That is, "buzz" to me is not a positive term, it is automatically something annoying or at minimum distracting, not something pleasant, not something positive, not something to think of a positive. So when I hear or read "create buzz" my stimulus-response evocation is highly negative, from the get-go....

There are marketing campaigns I like--but they're ones that provide information and don't regard me as a resource to exploit and regard me as having to exert myself and expend time and effort that I would rather spend on things that aren't "mysteries" which don't provide any reason for me to expect that they're worth my time and effort....

#50 ::: Pfusand ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 09:18 PM:

Xopher,

'Seamstress' is a weird case. I bet it came about because someone thought 'seamster' (feminized version of *'seamer') didn't sound feminine enough, so they added the '-ess' suffix. That way you know it's a female woman GIRL seamer, you see.

I read -- and you may take this with a grain of salt -- that women were forced out of the, uh, garment-making trade when it became lucrative, so the word "seamster" disappeared. Later, when women were again allowed to make clothes for sale, they used the imported (French) "ess" ending.

My favorite is "backster" or "baxter" as the feminine of "baker."

#51 ::: Ginger ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 09:26 PM:

Fragano @42: If "master" is masculine, what about Mr. Sir?

I really must find that roadster for a drive around the blockster.

#52 ::: Wirelizard ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 10:21 PM:

Isn't the male equivalent of "seamstress" "semptor"?

I haven't got enough Latin/Greek/linguistics background to parse it, but I recall RAH using it in one of his later novels, possibly Time Enough For Love - Lazarus Long has some skill with modifying lady's dresses, and mentions spending some time 'as a semptor in Paris' during a period of exile from the US...

So I have a SFian justification for the word, and some confidence that RAH had a larger richer vocabulary than I do, but naught else.

#53 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 10:34 PM:

Caveat empster?

#54 ::: P.N. Elrod ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 10:36 PM:

I got one, and I would no more give that biscuit to my dogs than I'd give candy from a weird stranger to a child.

For all I know the dog treat could be full of strychnine.

Sparky, whoever you are, as an advertising stunt this is an epic failure.

You gave me the creeps. If that was your intent, then hey, congrats, you succeeded.

If it was to get me to play a game, buy a book or whatever, forget it.

If you wanted me to look at your website, I did do that, but it's incomprehensible. I have better uses for my time than to try figuring it out.

If you want to sell a book then please, next time BE OBVIOUS and KEEP IT SIMPLE:

Book's name, author's name, publishing date, sample first chapter, picture of the cover, links to Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

I'm sending back your damned treat along with a note to take me off your mailing list.

This incident won't be mentioned in my blog, I'm not an advertising venue for loose wing nuts, but I do appreciate Teresa giving me the chance to vent. (Thank you!)

:walks off muttering while loading her .38 with blessed silver bullets:

#55 ::: Erik Nelson ::: (view all by) ::: May 19, 2009, 11:46 PM:

is a female hamster a hamstress?

#56 ::: y ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 12:12 AM:

If we're using Latin, the appropriate word is "sartor", of which I believe the feminine would be "sartrix". Interestingly enough, Googling this I found a page from the online Bosworth-Toller with entries for Old English seámere (m., tailor) and seámestre (f., sempstress, with the note that "though the noun is feminine it seems not confined to females"). This may be the source for the OED entry, but it would seem to give a pedigree for seamer as well.

#57 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 01:17 AM:

Ginger @ 51... I really must find that roadster for a drive around the blockster.

To acquire a lobster? Or for a purpose more sinister?

#58 ::: Bruce Cohen (SpeakerToManagers) ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 02:21 AM:

Getting back to the original thread, is the subject of the post a huckster?

#59 ::: Bruce Cohen (SpeakerToManagers) ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 02:29 AM:

Bill Higgins @ 32

Poul Anderson was known to create a new Anglo-Saxon word or 12. See "Uncleftish Beholding".

#60 ::: Mez ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 10:50 AM:

Bill (#32), Bruce (#59) on Anglo-Saxon neologisms <koff>. In the late 19th/early 20th centuries, as part of a kind of Northern Nationalism (worst, most extreme, expression seen in Germanic Nazi ideas) there was a movement to replace Latinate, French, Italian and such Southern borrowings and influences in Northern languages.

I found this out through the pianist and composer Percy Grainger, who liked to use Anglo-Saxon or 'blue-eyed English' versions of standard musical terms. (He had some other somewhat eccentric aspects of his character, which tend now to be better remembered than his work (perhaps I should try burning down some great public building to be remembered), some of which was remarkably prescient. One day the lost Kangaroo Pouch music machine may turn up, or be reconstructed.)

#61 ::: hamadryad ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 11:11 AM:

Lee@43: Tailor carries carries more the assumption of someone who specialises in a particular type of clothing construction, rather than specialising in clothing for men. Women also wear (and make) tailored clothing, so the term is gender-neutral. Although it might not have been before women started wearing tailored clothing.

Perhaps clothier would be an appropriate word in your situation? 'Seamstress' implies someone who sews seams, but doesn't necessarily have the skill to design or make an entire garment from scratch.

#62 ::: James D. Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 12:33 PM:

How minor is my own celebrity! I didn't get one of the puppy bones.

#63 ::: KeithS ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 12:43 PM:

hamadryad @ 61:

The problem is that tailor kind of implies normal garments (for this discussion, suits and tuxedos are lumped in with normal). Clothier fails for the same reason.

Seamstress is broader in that it covers costumes, random odds and ends, and general sewing stuff without being restricted in the same way.

#64 ::: Carrie S. ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 01:04 PM:

And "sewer", which would work quite nicely for either gender and to cover everything mentioned, is unfortunately homonymous with "sewer" like where the toilet flushes to.

#65 ::: hamadryad ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 01:20 PM:

Keith@63:

Wouldn't the term 'costumer' then work for Lee's purposes? Costumer is a fairly broad term that could refer not only to the clothing itself, but also the accessories and props that go with it. As they are making period costumes, it's accurate.

#66 ::: Dave Weingart ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 01:37 PM:

Werewolf?

There wolf, there castle.

#67 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 02:50 PM:

hamadryad, #65: Garb is not costume! Garb is clothing, intended to stand up to daily wear and to look as good on close inspection as it does from a distance. Of the terms which have been suggested, "clothier" is the most useful.

#68 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 03:11 PM:

The terminology is so much simpler in French.
For once.
It's 'couturier' for men, and 'couturière' for women, no matter what kind of sewing is involved.

#69 ::: hamadryad ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 03:37 PM:

Lee @ 67

I guess you've never seen the costumes made by the Stratford Festival (Ontario) if you think costumes aren't made to stand up to daily wear (or at least the same amount of abuse as daily wear) and look as good on close inspection as they do from a distance. In general their costumes are of far better construction than any clothing you'll fine in any store anywhere. You do professional costumers a disservice when you automatically assume that their work is of inferior quality to that of your SCA brethren. I saw some pretty shoddy and makeshift 'garb' in my days in the SCA. None of my contemporaries had any problem admitting that garb is costume. I don't know why the suggestion is so offensive.

#70 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 04:25 PM:

hamadryad @ 69 ...
I can't speak to your area, but 'costume' rather frequently implies the tatty things cheaply sold to the masses for halloween, and unlikely to last more than a few hours.

Having something that's taken time, effort, skill and research to create with tarred that brush is frustrating.

Beyond that, there's an ongoing tendency for many folk to describe the SCA as something along the lines of "dress-up for grown-ups", with rather a sneer. That also tends to result in a 'costume' vs 'garb' knee-jerk :)

#71 ::: hamadryad ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 08:46 PM:

xeger@70

Sure, I know what you mean. We have tatty Hallowe'en costumes here, too. But I've never heard the people who make those paper and plastic things called 'costumers'. There are a lot of costumers who are serious professionals, and who do create amazing, well-constructed garments for the stage. To dismiss them as people who make tatty disposable paper things worn by children to go trick-or-treating is insulting and frustrating. And to say that their work is in any way inferior to the costumes made in the SCA is also insulting.

Hey, apparently knee-jerk reactions can go both ways.

#72 ::: hamadryad ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 08:48 PM:

Oh hey, and what's wrong with 'dress up for grown ups'? Who doesn't like playing dress-up? That's why I got involved in the SCA in the first place.

Life's too short to take yourself too seriously.

#73 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: May 20, 2009, 08:56 PM:

hamadryad @ 71 ...
Sure, I know what you mean. We have tatty Hallowe'en costumes here, too. But I've never heard the people who make those paper and plastic things called 'costumers'.

Er... and if you'd read what I wrote again, I wasn't talking about the people making them, just the term 'costume' vs the term 'garb'.

Hey, apparently knee-jerk reactions can go both ways.

Sure :D

However, as a costumer, seamstress, sometime garb maker, corsetiere and would-be tailor, I'd be obliged if the reaction was directed at what I'd actually written... ;) [0]

[0] Hell - I have trouble when I'm -trying- to make tatty costumes... it's the same thing as trying to sing off key when you know what on key is...

#74 ::: Marilee ::: (view all by) ::: May 21, 2009, 04:04 PM:

xeger, do you have an idea how I can find someone who will make everyday clothes for me? I've searched on tailor and seamstress and everybody I can find locally only makes wedding and prom dresses. I can usually find tops that fit and are in good colors, but I can't buy pants that fit or are in good colors. My next step is to go to the local sewing machine store and ask.

#75 ::: Mary Kay ::: (view all by) ::: May 21, 2009, 04:58 PM:

2. What am I supposed to do with this puppy biscuit? It’s way too big for small Aggie Maggie. Should I forward it to Jordin Kare, or does he already have one

Well, as far as I know, he doesn't have one, but he's already left for Marcon. I *should* have been with him but the doctor's diagnosis on Tuesday was influenza, so not. I've got Tamiflu and it's really helping, but I'm stuck home on Memorial Day weekend all by my lonesome while everyone's out at cons having fun. Sigh.

I do wonder what our 3 Savannahs would make of it though.
MKK

#76 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: May 21, 2009, 05:04 PM:

Mary Kay, sorry you're sick and missing the cons. That's no fun.

I'm not going to any cons either, if that's any consolation ¬π. I'm just too disorganized to get my act together enough.

#77 ::: Mary Kay ::: (view all by) ::: May 21, 2009, 07:26 PM:

Thanks Xopher. I may have to give up reading LJ and Twitter for the duration -- reading about everyone's good time makes me sulky and envious - not good for the soul. I mean even if I were there, I'm too washed out and sickly to do anything. Not to mention infecting everyone with whatever flu it is I've got. Hmm, there were supposed to call and tell me that today. Guess I'd better call tomorrow morning.
MKK

#78 ::: Mez ::: (view all by) ::: May 21, 2009, 08:43 PM:

Is "dressmaker" used in the US?

Mary Kay, sorry to hear about your influenza. I hope it's not too bad and over ASAP. Maybe concentrating on a warm inner glow from your not carrying infection/contagion to others, and improving karma will help your mood.

A HR person in our USA HQ sent an email out about Memorial Day weekend to All Staff last week. Which caused (a/be)musement to many of the AU/CA/HK/NZ/SA/UK work units.

#79 ::: Paula LIeberman ::: (view all by) ::: May 21, 2009, 10:35 PM:

Rat-a-tat-tat
Rat-a-tat-tat
Tatty clothing,
Tatty garb,
Put on the costume
With a barb!

#80 ::: Paula Lieberman ::: (view all by) ::: May 21, 2009, 10:41 PM:

I'm not at any of the cons this weekend, either.... too disorganized...

#81 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: May 21, 2009, 10:58 PM:

Marilee @ 74 ...
xeger, do you have an idea how I can find someone who will make everyday clothes for me? I've searched on tailor and seamstress and everybody I can find locally only makes wedding and prom dresses. I can usually find tops that fit and are in good colors, but I can't buy pants that fit or are in good colors. My next step is to go to the local sewing machine store and ask.

I'd expect variable results from that one. If you read some of the discussions over at Fashion Incubator, you'll see that there's a fair gap between home sewing and industry sewing.

Beyond that, I'm not sure what area you're in (my bad, since I'm sure I -should- remember), but it might be worth searching on 'bespoke', or checking with some of the better dry cleaners in the area. If you've got some more traditional mens clothing stores, they might also be good people to ask.

I'm sorry to not be more help here -- the last time I went looking for anything along those lines, it was to find somebody good to sharpen my shears.

#82 ::: Summer Storms ::: (view all by) ::: May 22, 2009, 02:01 PM:

Other than knowing who Steven Swiniarski is, and having enjoyed what I've read so far of his books set in a Cleveland that is not quite my Cleveland, I'm confused.

Which is, of course, nothing new for me.

#83 ::: Marilee ::: (view all by) ::: May 22, 2009, 07:39 PM:

Thanks, Mez & xeger! I'll try those, too. It's very frustrating -- I could make my own patterns much less clothes before I had the first stroke.

#84 ::: Mary Frances ::: (view all by) ::: May 22, 2009, 08:02 PM:

I'd recommend the drycleaners, too, Marilee. I've known two people, in different parts of the country, who worked full-time doing tailoring for "good" drycleaners. Most of their work was alternations (or, as one of them put it, with a long-suffering sigh, "If I have to shorten one more pair of sweatpaints with zipper cuffs, I'm going to scream!"), but both also did work on the side and were certainly capable enough with sewing machines to fit and make clothing from scratch.

#85 ::: Marilee ::: (view all by) ::: May 23, 2009, 07:34 PM:

Thanks, Mary Frances! And I rode with friends to a funeral in another state yesterday and they know someone who used to make clothes, so they'll ask her for me. I really appreciate all the help -- I need some intact pants!

#86 ::: James D. Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: May 23, 2009, 08:16 PM:

Did anyone go to the book promo?

How was it?

#87 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: May 24, 2009, 06:34 PM:

Marilee, if you strike out closer to home, I'd be glad to visit with you about making or recreating clothes. No obligation.

(I cross-posted with my response to Abi on the current Open Thread)

#88 ::: Marilee ::: (view all by) ::: May 26, 2009, 09:29 PM:

Thanks, Carol!

#89 ::: S A Swann ::: (view all by) ::: September 19, 2009, 09:02 AM:

For what it's worth, here I am, on my blog, explaining what it was all about.

The delay in responding here is due to the nature of what I was doing. It would have been bad form and/or counterproductive to make any public statements about the ARG before the project was completed.

For the curious who want to see how the whole thing played out over the summer, you can read the forum thread here.

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