Fairy Tale in the TV Age

Love fairy tales? Love television? Addicted to Once Upon a Time and Grimm? (I certainly am…)

I compiled a list of the top 10 fairy tale television series in the last 60 years for Clarkesworld Magazine and put it together (with YouTube clips!) in a lovely article for your perusing pleasure.

Click here to read The Fairy Tale in the TV Age now! (As always, your comments there are encouraged and welcome.)

How many of them have YOU seen?




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Basically Amazing Alethea!

Basically Amazing Ashley has me over at her blog today for Fairy Tale Fortnight — “Today’s Fairy Tale Fortnight interview totally makes my day. Because it is with the author of my number one most anticipated release of 2012 and will be followed by a review of the book! I cannot even begin to describe how happy I am that Alethea, author of the soon to be released Enchanted agreed to be part of Fairy Tale Fortnight! So check out her awesome interview and then enter the giveaway of WIN that she is donating!

Ashley’s interview was REALLY fun — what three wishes would I ask a genie? Go click over, enter the contest, and find out! The ocntest only runs until May 7th, so do it now!

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Adam Ezra’s ENCHANTED Easter Egg

If you’re one of those folks who likes to know little background DVD-extras for novels, this one’s for you.

At the end of the acknowledgments for ENCHANTED, I thank the Adam Ezra Group because I wrote most of the acknowledgements while waiting for their show to start at the 8×10 club in Baltimore, MD. I told the guys that I’d write them into the book — they probably thought I was joking. But no!

As it turns out, the show had a pretty small audience, but those who were there were pretty big fans. Along with some New York Times bestselling princess, there was a professional photographer, and Joe stumbled on these videos of some of the songs on YouTube the other day. The sound quality is even pretty darn good. It’s fabulous that I will always be able to go back to that show and relive that moment in my life.

You, too, can finish reading Enchanted and then click on these videos for the full experience.

“Burn Brightly”

“Miss Hallelujah”

“Eddie Whistles”

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PSA: Women’s Health

Mom and I had a nice long talk the other day. She owed it to me…as she had just experienced a strange anomaly that had her in the hospital for a few days. It was something to do with her heart.

I hate hearing about this afterward — there’s really no good time to hear something like this. (Thank goodness for Aunt Theda, to whom we tell everything.) I understand why, of course — no one actually knew what was wrong. They still don’t. In fact, the best heart doctor in the city ran every test in the book on Mom and informed her that she was exceptionally healthy and there was nothing wrong with her. They can only assume it was a normal atrial flutter combined with dehydration, not enough food, and dancing for two hours at her dance class. (Does Mom sound like anyone you know? LOL)

She knows I am a glutton for details — especially about things I really don’t want to experience for myself — so she explained everything she felt that day. Especially the jaw pain. I had no idea that jaw pain was one of the major symptoms of a heart attack, especially in women. So  did some research.

We’re all so used to seeing the trademarked left-arm-grab in movies, a lot of folks don’t know about other symptoms of heart attack. Many women who have heart attacks don’t survive BECAUSE they have no idea that what they’re feeling is a heart attack.

Heart Attack Symptoms Other Than the Ones You See in Movies:
1.) Jaw pain (like lock jaw) or back pain
2.) Vomiting
3.) Shortness of breath
4.) Indigestion, or feeling like you’ve swallowed too much food without chewing it well enough

According to, 40% of female heart attack victims feel no chest pain at all. Conversely, men can also exhibit the above symptoms. Listen to your body, people. I care about you — you should care about you too. Go directly to the hospital. Do not pass go.

And for heaven’s sake, don’t make your husband change first because he looks like a slob. Sheesh, Mom! *sigh*

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Here’s My Beef

There is a serious grammatical pet peeve of mine in this poster.

Of course I’m not going to come right out and say it…what’s the fun in that?

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Move Over, Fairy

My little sister gets her conversational ideas from the Sedaris family.

This might concern anyone who has heard, read, or seen anything by David or Amy Sedaris. (Not counting the personal thank you note Soteria has framed by her door; the family photos are relegated to refrigerator magnets.) This would concern me, if a.) we weren’t half Greek and b.) our family wasn’t just as off the wall. Most days, I get to be David and Soteria gets to be Amy. I’ll write the essay book that gets turned into a play, and Soteria will pen the how-to-bead book that assumes everyone is an idiot. She’ll get her own television show, and I’ll travel the globe making millions of people chuckle. World Domination 101. Opa.

I didn’t fall in love with Strangers With Candy as much as Soteria did, but we do share the same favorite essay of David’s: “Six to Eight Black Men.” If you haven’t heard it, go find the album and go get it. (I’ll wait.) Make sure you’re not drinking anything, or operating heavy machinery. If you’ve already heard it, you’ll understand why one of Soteria’s first conversations with our Brazilian friend Marcello was about his holidays and customs.

Comparing and contrasting with US customs, there weren’t a whole lot of differences. They have Christmas and Easter and fun stuff like that. And then Soteria asked about the tooth fairy and she lost Marcello completely.

In Brazil, there is no tooth fairy. They have a little tooth mouse. (Latin America calls him Ratoncito Perez. No relation to Rosie.) What does a mouse want with human teeth? (Come to that, what does a fairy need with them? I’ve just assumed they need the calcium for strong wing growth.)

When a young child loses his tooth in Brazil, he leaves it in the bathroom for the tooth mouse. That made more sense to Marcello, who pointed out that, no matter what hemisphere you’re in, you typically brush your teeth in the bathroom. In return for his tooth, the child receives one Real (pronounced “ray-al”) or several Reals (pronounced “hay-ice”, because everybody likes an opportunity to make fun of foreigners). And the cute little tooth mouse adds another body part to his treasure pile.

I’m totally on board with this “leaving it in the bathroom” idea. I bet my father wishes he had known about the Brazilian tradition the time he got caught with his hand under Soteria’s pillow. Of course, to my father’s credit, he came up with the best response ever.

“I’m sorry,” he said to my sister. “You caught me. I was trying to steal your money.”

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Calling All Junior Arborists

I was going through some old pics to post on my shiny new Facebook Fan Page, and I came across this one. It’s from the tree at Gypsy‘s house, located roughly halfway between Awesome Porch and Awesome Garage, and I love it. Its flowers look and feel like magnolia flowers (apart from being pink), but the leaves are soft and not waxy at all.

What is this tree? Does anyone know?

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They’re Watching Your Madness

On my road trip down to Charleston I saw it again — the sign that always catches my eye when driving the 495/Capital Beltway around DC — “Aggressive Driver Imaging in Use.”

What the heck does that mean, anyway? It brings to mind hidden nanocameras everywhere zooming in on your body language while some Tim Roth “Lie To Me”-type facial recognition program decides if you’re just too upset to drive.

I had Soteria write this down on a note at the shop so I would remember to look it up when I got here. So hat does the sign mean? The Washington Post’s Answer Man actually did a fairy decent article on the experiment. From what I gather, the cameras are mounted on police vehicles you might see on the side of the highway along these stretches.

What these cameras do, if you are caught being an “aggressive driver” (using these criteria), is take a picture of your license plate. The plate is run through a computer, and the registration holder is sent a letter explaining that the vehicle was being operated in an unsafe manner. You could be fined, and you could have points taken off on your license.

I get it. I think it’s a good idea. Some of these drivers being jerks are putting all of us at risk by trying to get home five minutes early.

However, I do have one beef with the criteria — passing a car on the right is used as one of the checkpoints for aggressive driving. Dude…have you been on a road trip in the last ten years? Drivers in America seem to pick a lane arbitrarily and stay there until the spirit moves them. Yes, if I’m behind some moron going 10-miles-under in the far left lane who won’t move over after being flashed, I’m going to pass him. I’m probably going to have a dirty look on my face. I may even be a little pissed off…perhaps just shy of aggressive. But the guy who needs to get the ticket is THE JERK WHO WON’T MOVE OVER. Dear Mr. Jerk: please do us all a favor and get back in the right lane.

But that’s another rant, for another time. In the meantime, drive safely and have a great summer.

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You Learn Something New Every Day

We’re out in the garage earlier — I’ve got my head down on the nice cool picnic table, sucking fresh air in between the puffs on Gypsy’s cigarette, and Gypsy’s explaining to Morgan about what she refers to as her “mosquito deck” of Magic cards. She goes on to say:

“You know, the mosquitos that bite you are only the females. The mosquitos that buzz are only the males. So if you’re in your bedroom in the dark and you hear the little bastard, you have nothing to worry about. But if you feel yourself get bit, you better wake up and kill the [insert nasty word here].”

After doing a bit of research on The Intarwebs, I have discovered that this oft-repeated saying is a myth. Both sexes of mosquito — though each at different frequencies to aid in mating — do, in fact, sound like buzzing to the human ear. Having never heard the myth before, I found it interesting. Having discovered the truth behind it, I know to better arm myself next time at night. In the summer. In the dark. In the swamp. In India. And now you know too.


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