Sunday, March 31, 2013

Why Abby Sciuto is My Favorite Goth

Ever watched the TV series NCIS?  If so, you know my all-time favorite goth, Abby Sciuto.  Yes, I know, she's so... perky.  Not to mention being a TV character instead of a REAL GIRL.  But she's smart, funny, loyal to a fault, has the most incredible wardrobe, plays New Orleans jazz tapes at funerals, and actually puts gothdom in a pretty positive (and impressive) light.  She breaks most of the stereotypes, and, according to one of those polls you've probably never heard of, is currently the most popular character on TV. 

Here are some of the reasons I like her character so much:

Her clothes.

Her sense of humor... and her clothes.

Her choice in men... and her clothes.

Her sense of adventure... and her clothes.

Her incredible intelligence... and her clothes.

Did I mention I love her clothes???

Who's YOUR favorite goth?  Are they a real person or an invented character?  What do you love about them, and why?

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

DIY Weekend

Well, this last weekend turned out to be the perfect time to alter some of my things into... other things.

First, a pair of leggings that I bought at Claire's.  I bought a Medium/Large pair, only to find out when I got them on that apparently these are for medium/large girls (as opposed to women) who have absolutely no hips.  ::SIGH::  Fortunately, I remembered a post from another blog (I think it was from The Professor's old blog, but can't find it to share the link) about converting old tights and leggings into sleeves and arm warmers, so I tried that on these. Success!!  Now I have a super pair of long 'sleeves' to wear under short-sleeved and sleeveless tops for some great new looks!  :-)

Next came a Miami Ink t-shirt that I found in the men's department at Macy's.  I love the design, but it didn't fit me properly across the chest or hips (men are rather flat in both those areas, while I am not).  So I cut off the sleeves and the bottom of the shirt halfway below the design, and voila!  I now have a great-fitting sleeveless crop-top that I can wear with a lot of different things. 

And finally, the rescue of my favorite (and oldest) pair of black Tripp skinny pants.  I wore them to work on Friday, and was horrified when I suddenly saw the RIP.  And I don't mean R.I.P. as in "Rest In Peace", I mean RIP as in "OMG, there's a RIP in my pants"!  Fortunately, it was not in a place anyone could see (I immediately checked on that with a co-worker), so I didn't have to run home and change, but there was no way they could be repaired, as the fabric was splitting from age and wear.  I've had them for years, and I'd already fixed the seams in several places, so I had literally worn them to death.  But then I thought, well, the rip is up high but low enough to make shorts out of them.  So out came my handy pinking shears, and now I have an awesome new pair of black shorts to wear; they look great with fishnets and boots!

Do you have any DIY tips you'd be willing to share?  I'm new at this, and would love to hear them!  :-)

Monday, March 25, 2013

"Quoth the Raven..."

"... never Kindle!  Nor Nook, neither."  AWK!

Well, the raven didn't exactly say THAT, but it's the way I feel.  I don't want 'electronic' books, I want REAL books.  I love the way they look, the way they smell, and the way the pages feel in my hand.  And I don't want to not be able to read something because I forgot to charge a battery, or bring my extension cord, or there's no outlet, or I accidentally deleted it, or whatever.  YES, they ARE godsends for people with extremely limited shelf space, or who are always traveling, or who have trouble reading things only available as e-books on a regular-sized computer screen, or have one of the many other excellent reasons for preferring them to real books.  But that's not me, and I hope it never will be, because books are a big part of who I am.  Also, I admit that I am somewhat of a technological dinosaur, and electronic gadgets are sometimes difficult for me to navigate, so I probably have a somewhat negative view of them in that respect.  I have occasional control issues with my computer, too, although we get along fairly well most of the time.  (At least my mouse doesn't bite me any more...)

Anyway, I have always had a lovely collection of books, which now includes a small group that are either about the goth subculture itself or of a gothy nature.  I thought I'd share these with you today, and maybe coax you into sharing one or two of yours as well.

First are my books about the subculture.  My absolute favorite of these is Goth Chic: A Connoisseur's Guide to Dark Culture by Gavin Baddeley.  When I first saw the title I thought, 'Ho hum, another book on style and dress', and I didn't buy it for quite some time.  I'm glad I finally did, because I couldn't have been more wrong!  It's a detailed history of all the different parts of the subculture (including, but not limited to, movies, TV, books, music, bands, and personalities), and both the writing and the amount of details given are exquisite.  The only problem I have with it is the TINY print!

Almost as good is Nancy Kilpatrick's The Goth Bible.   This is a more general overview, so I'm glad I read it before reading Goth Chic.  I wasn't overwhelmed with too much information, because I'd read this first and had some idea about who and what Baddeley was talking about!  Very well written, and with lots of comments and quotes by various and sundry goths.

Gothic Charm School by Jillian Venters (aka "The Lady of the Manners") is fun to read.  Although it's geared more towards younger goths and their parents rather than goths who ARE parents, I still found answers to a few questions I didn't know I had!

If you are interested in 'green burial' or in the funeral industry in general, I highly recommend Grave Matters by Mark Harris.  It's a fascinating look at the various types of modern burial practices, and how we can take matters into our own hands to make death and burial a less frightening prospect for ourselves and our loved ones.

I'm only about halfway through Walking the Twilight Path: A Gothic Book of the Dead by Michelle Belanger, but I'm taking it slowly so that I can actually do the meditations and exercises she suggests.  This is an experiential book about a spiritual path that focuses on walking between the worlds of the living and the dead in order to find the gateway of transformation and rebirth.  I really can't explain it well here; it's one of those books you have to read for yourself to understand.

And here are my favorite fiction books (so far):

~ Death: A Life (by Death, as told to George Pendle)

~ The Woman in Black by Susan Hill

~ The Haunted Looking Glass: Ghost Stories Chosen by Edward Gorey

~ Mort and Reaper Man by Terry Pratchett  (Read them in that order, they'll make more sense.)

~ The "Undead" Series by MaryJanice Davidson.  (Vampires rather than goths, but who cares?  They're hysterical!)

Now that I've shared with you, I'd love to hear about your favorite goth-type books.  The more comments, the better!

Until next time...

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Coming Out of the Goth Closet (No, not THAT Closet, the one with Clothes in it)

Since my post on The Goth Closet was so amazingly popular [insert :-) here!], I figure, why not elaborate on the theme?  Maybe I can put some ideas out there that those interested haven't thought of yet.  And they might have some new ideas for ME.

I'm going to focus on working people as opposed to full-time students, since students usually have a LOT more leeway in dress, and because when I was a full-time student (1979-1981) I was still in that stage where I usually just wore what everyone else wore, mainly jeans and t-shirts.  My BIG fashion statement back then was wearing clogs to campus, which almost no one else did. So I don't really feel qualified to talk about campus fashion, even though I work at one.  I will say, though, that in the 15 years I've worked at this university, I don't recall seeing even one other person who was obviously goth, even in my classes.  ::SIGH::

I have to admit, when I started gothing up my wardrobe I was worried that people would think I was going through a mid-life crisis or something stupid like that.  (When my ex hit his early forties, he got a divorce and about a million piercings, mostly in his ears but also in his lip, eyebrow, nose and, so it's rumored, somewhere else.  Thank the gods, the divorce came first.)  I celebrated my own new-found freedom with two small but meaningful tattoos; my new boyfriend and I both got ours at the same time.  This was my first foray into 'alternative' style, and I decided that I liked it.

Clothes are a lot easier and less painful to get than tattoos, and we have the advantage of trying them on first to see if they look good on us.  They're also not permanent; we can change them or get rid of them as we grow, shrink, or just change our minds about how we want to look.  However, we agonize over our clothes, and what we think people will think of us when we wear them, FAR too much.  Your clothes should be both fun and meaningful, stating who you are and what you like, not what you think someone else will approve of.  But getting up the courage to do that takes time for most of us, especially for women, most of whom are trained from birth to seek approval from others.  It was worse in my growing-up years than it is now, but that mindset hasn't gone away.

I started by wearing just one or two gothy pieces at a time, like a skull t-shirt or a gravestones necklace and earrings set, to see what kinds of comments or other reactions I got from coworkers.  When nobody said anything negative, I got braver and showed up in more elaborate outfits.  To date, the closest thing to a negative comment I've gotten is, "That's an... interesting... shirt." I just gave the guy a big smile and said, "Yes, it is, isn't it?"  (I think skulls are VERY interesting, actually, so I enjoy wearing them on shirts.)

I've found a LOT of my favorite goth jewelry and clothing items in thrift stores and Etsy shops.   I like buying at thrift stores because I find older items that are now one-of-a-kind, unlike when they were new, and at a thrift store they're also CHEAP.  Etsy items are also often either one-of-a-kind,  made in small batches, or made to order, since these are small businesses run out of people's homes.  I've had more than one custom order done, and am very satisfied with all of them.  The prices in most shops are pretty reasonable, and many sellers offer discounts or have seasonal sales, so you can 'favorite' items you like and check to see if/when they go on sale or a discount is being offered.  Some shop owners are also open to reasonable offers and/or trade.

Here are a few of my favorite Etsy shops and some items I've bought from them.  These are all items I have worn to work (except the last one!), and the ribcage t-shirt and snake vertebrae earrings are the ones I mentioned in my previous Goth Closet post.

Banyan Tree Clothing  -- These skeletons glow in the dark!Skeleton Shirt. Dancing Skeletons Women's Day of the Dead Black t-shirt

Bigtime Tees -- Gotta love this classic t-shirt!   And from TheGreenWolf -- My snake vertebrae earrings.
Rib Cage Skeleton Horror Punk Goth Halloween Costume WOMENS T-Shirt Your Choice of S,M,L,XL,2XLReal snake bone earrings vertebrae

Strangexchange -- These earrings go great with the two shirts above.
Skeleton Charm Earrings

 Funkomavintage -- I LOVE this skirt!!
Stripe vintage skirt Nautical French sailors Breton black stripe

Zorra's Vintage Emporium is now closed, but I got this 80's leather coat for $40, shipping included!!
FREE US Shipping 80s Vintage Black Long Big Shoulder Leather Trench Coat Jacket sz Petite L

SickOn Sin -- This is one of my all-time favorite shirts.  He's so... CUTE.
Grim Reaper - Women or Men T-Shirt

Delightfully Deviant -- You should see the grins I get when I wear these bloomers grocery shopping...
 White and Black Stripe Bloomers

Shoes are another story entirely, so I'll save them for another post.

So, I've shown you mine, now you show me yours.  Where do YOU find your favorite goth clothes? 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Hair Dilemma

I'm a natural blonde, but for years I colored my hair various shades of red because I felt so faded out.  After a while, that got boring, so I went back to blonde.  I toyed with the idea of going black, but after seeing myself in a black wig, I decided it's too harsh for my skin tone.  However, I'm getting lots of white/silver in my hair now, and I think it might be interesting to go platinum white and see what happens. 

The scary part is that it's been over ten years since I've gotten my hair professionally cut, and almost that long since it's been colored, either professionally or at home.  The problem with going blonde or white is that it strips the color from your hair, and that's scary!  I especially don't want to try this and then discover that it makes me look old.  (I got some blonde-in-a-box the other day, to have on hand just in case I have to make an emergency repair.)  Because it's been so long, I no longer have any idea where to go to have this done, or what brands are best for use at home.  I've looked online at several sites, checked out reviews of various brands of home coloring systems, and am still totally confused.  All I found is that ammonia-free products are best, but you still get stuck with using hydrogen peroxide, which I already knew.

Have any of you gone platinum or white?  If so, any tips on what to use, what to do or not do, etc., would be GREATLY appreciated!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Gothic Gardening (or, In the Midst of Life We Are in Compost)

Scary Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With hemlock flowers, and foxglove towers,
And monkshoods all in a row.

It's getting to be time again for one of my favorite hobbies -- gardening!  Last year, after having to give up my full-sun community garden plot, I finally managed to get permission to make a garden out of the sad little L-shaped area at the back of our ground-floor apartment.  It's surrounded on 1.5 sides by the apartment complex walls, on one side by the laundry room wall, and on one side by a tree, so it's pretty shaded most of the day.  Not at all what I'm used to, but I like trying new things and it's included in the rent, as opposed to $125 extra a year.  It was coming along slowly but nicely, until our cold and almost rainless winter blasted it, followed by the Feral Family using it for a giant litter box.  However, now that spring is (finally) arriving and the last of the Ferals are (hopefully) leaving this weekend, I'm going to attempt to resurrect the plants that I think might have survived, and replace those that definitely didn't. 

So, what do goths like to put in their gardens?  Let me tell you about what I'm putting in mine.

Well, to start with, I've got a tree... a BIG tree.  It's a yellow plum, and in the spring it has the most lovely blossoms that drift lazily down and cover the ground (and my head) with pale pink snow.  In the summer, however, it has cherry tomato-sized plums that ripen and then rain down on my head like hail, requiring that I wear a suit of armor when going out to gather them or clean them up.   I didn't have a choice about this tree, but when it's got leaves it shades a large part of my garden and allows me to be out there while being protected from The Evil Sun, so I'm really big on shade plants now.  Can't have too many popular herbs, unfortunately, as most of those are full-sun lovers.  But we shall see.

I was able to transplant a few things from my old garden into the new one last year, including some paperwhite and grape hyacinth bulbs that I put in pots until I can find just the right spots for them.  In addition, I planted six first-season foxgloves, two in the partial sun area and four in the shade, and they should be ready to flower this year.  One was so excited about being in a garden that it actually DID flower last year; I'm hoping that it will be as enthusiastic this coming year.  I've also recently bought an Oriental poppy plant that's already blooming, and a packet of scarlet poppy seeds.  I'm going to put these in the long bed along the building wall (as soon as I've cleaned out all the cat poop).  It does get partial sun in the mornings, and the primroses and basil I planted last year did pretty well.  I even got an old sunflower seed to bloom!  :-)

Since I can't have many herbs, I'm looking for shade- and semi-shade-loving plants that will flower and make things look lovely.  I'd like to go for a "cultivated wild" look, and am definitely interested in some of the more esoteric herbs and flowering plants.  In addition to the poppies and foxgloves, I've got an (old) packet of belladonna seeds that I'm thinking of trying out.  I really miss my datura plant right about now.  I had it a few years ago, and the flowers were absolutely gorgeous.  Unfortunately, the seeds never sprouted when I planted them later.

I'm also thinking about having some non-plant 'gothy' decor, with maybe an old cemetery feel.

What kinds of plants do you have in your gardens?  Do you have a "gothic" garden, and if so, what kinds of things other than plants do you have in it?

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Goth v. Hippie

After this morning's rant, I found this and just had to share.  Having lived in San Francisco from 1962 through 1987, I can SO totally relate to this...  ;-)

Do you have any funny goth cartoons or jokes to share??  If so, please post them!!

Perception is Not Always Reality

What's that?  I'm too new to start ranting already??  Heh, watch me.

Martin and I had a horrible experience this last weekend, which is actually still ongoing.  We discovered a litter of four feral kittens and their mom living in the back areas of our apartment complex, and we've been feeding and trying to socialize them so they could be taken to the shelter for adoption.  One has made more progress than the others, but it's been very slow going.  We already have ten cats of our own, and feeding these extra mouths has been tough, but we wanted to give them the best chance we could before sending them off. 

Last Sunday we caught two of the kittens and the mother cat (who is pregnant again!) and took them to our local shelter.  They were closed (an animal shelter closed on Sunday AND Monday????), but someone was there and came out to speak with us.  We were told that they don't do 'spay and release' and would euthanize the mother out of hand, so we decided to take them to an SPCA further away which has a no-kill policy.  Unfortunately, THAT shelter won't take ferals over 8 weeks old, and these kittens were at least that old or older when we found them.  The reason?  They "can't be socialized for adoption".  Tell THAT to OUR cats, several of whom were older ferals when we socialized them.  The girls there really wanted to help us, but couldn't.  They suggested we take them across the street to the county shelter, but they refused them pointblank because "you have a shelter in your area".  When we explained it was closed that day and the next, we were ignored and basically told to get lost.

We then did something that I'm not particularly proud of, but we felt we had no choice.  We could NOT keep Feral Mom in that tiny trap cage from Sunday through Tuesday without food or water, and we knew she would never allow herself to be trapped again.  We also couldn't afford continuing to feed her or her future litter.  So we found a very nice neighborhood with some hills behind it that was away from the main street and freeway, and let her go.  She's got the skills for survival, and I'm sure there are one or two kindly people living there who put food out for cats and other animals.  We just could NOT take her back to that place to be killed simply because she has the misfortune of being born "outside of society", as it were.  She is not responsible for her situation; people are.  The kittens are being taken to our local shelter, because they do NOT have the survival skills their mom has.  They'll have four days to show if they are able to be socialized any further.  It's the best we can do for them at this point, as we can't afford to continue to feed them or their future progeny, either.  We are totally sick about what happened, and feel responsible, although none of it is actually our fault.  (ALL our cats were neutered/spayed as soon as they were old enough or socialized enough to go to the vet, and we keep them indoors as well.) 

Unfortunately, this type of stigma isn't limited to feral cats or dogs.  If a person doesn't have the knowledge or skills to function 'like everyone else' in our rigidly conformist society, or simply doesn't choose to do so, they are just tossed out, too.  Like homeless people, most of whom DO NOT choose to be homeless, or poor, or have mental problems.  Goths should understand this, since we are definitely among the misunderstood, no matter how much we may 'blend in' otherwise.  The supposedly funny saying, "You're unique -- just like everyone else", isn't very funny when you can't fit your square-peg self into that round hole even if you wanted to... and you don't.  Does this make us 'wrong' or 'bad'??  Of course not, just different.  But people's perception of those that don't conform to what they consider the norm is different from reality, because each person's reality is the norm for themIf we can't learn to understand and work with that, there will never be peace on this earth until we are all gone.

Bob Seger understood this when he wrote Feel Like A Number.  Not a goth band, but this song is definitely something we can relate to.  See how it makes you feel...

Thank you for listening to me.  I feel better for having said this and made it public.  Even if it doesn't change anything, at least I got up and said it.

And PLEASE have your pets spayed/neutered, especially if you let them outside.  It will save a lot of grief for everyone, including them.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Music Review: Adrian von Ziegler

When I first decided to check out goth music, I had NO idea where to start.  (No, I didn't know the name of a single goth band!)  So I pulled up YouTube on my computer at work and typed in "goth music", or maybe it was "gothic music", I don't remember which now.  Either way, I ended up with a song called "Death Dance" by Adrian von Ziegler.  After that, I listened to a piece called "Fatal Lullaby".  By the end of that second song, I had fallen totally in love with his music.

The little information I can find on von Ziegler is that his music went public around 2008, and he does everything on a synthesizer.  I was never a big synthesizer fan, but this is beautiful.  Most of his pieces are written in the classical style, and many sound like there is a full orchestra behind him.  It makes gorgeous background music if you are at work or studying, or even doing The Dreaded Housework.  (Imagine yourself doing laundry to this piece, called "Dark Ritual".  Isn't it awesome???)

His music doesn't appear to be in stores, but you can buy it online at iTunes or directly from the artist at Bandcamp and CDBaby.  There are links on YouTube that direct you to the various options for each song.  However, for those who can't afford it at the moment, he has put a LOT of his work on YouTube so you actually don't need to buy to enjoy. 

Monday, March 11, 2013

Finding Your Goth 'Family'

It's probably easier to find other goths when you're still in school, or if you go to clubs on a frequent basis (assuming you're not the only one in your town/area).  However, for those of us who took the longer road, and for those who don't live in goth-friendly places or have much opportunity to club, it's a bit of a challenge.  Since my search for like-minded souls is still very much ongoing, I thought this would make a good topic.

In the 15 years I've lived in this particular city, I think I've seen a total of two goths, and I'm only absolutely positive about one.  One was at a public bus stop with her friends, so I was hesitant to just say hello out of the blue, especially since I wasn't quite sure if she actually was goth.  The other one I've seen twice walking down the street while I was riding on a bus going the other way.  Both were either high school or early college age, so I'm old enough to be their mother.  ::SIGH::

Since obviously this town is NOT a big haven for goths, I've had to look elsewhere to meet them.  I joined a local goth meetup goup about a year ago, but had limited success as I wasn't able to attend many of the events, and several I could have gone to were cancelled due to venue and/or participation problems.  Fortunately, participation is starting to pick up again, so I'm giving it another shot.  (For meetup groups in your area, check out: )

I also began searching the internet for goth blogs to give me ideas about what the subculture is like today (as opposed to the 80s and 90s), and for info on clothes, makeup, hair, and all the usual things we obssess about.  ;-)  While most of the bloggers I've found are in other states or even countries, I was lucky enough to join a penpal group that one of them started, so I'm now at least able to correspond with new goth friends on a more personal level than just comments in a public blog. 

Clubs are still a possible venue for meeting people, although it's hard to actually MEET someone in a dark room with music blasting constantly that you have to scream over if you want to talk.  My husband and I went to one in San Francisco last year, and we did have a good time, but didn't meet anyone.  The closest I came to actually meeting people was in the bathroom while exchanging funny comments with a couple of women at the sinks!  But the 'local' goth clubs here are all 40-60 minutes or more away from home for me, and while I'm lucky to be THAT close to several, it's hard when most of them meet on weeknights or Sunday nights.  It's extremely difficult to get up and go to work the next day with Club Fog Brain!  I'm definitely NOT as young as I used to be...

So, what I'd like to know is what other ways there might be to meet local goths.  Any suggestions??  How did YOU meet your friends?  Inquiring minds would love to know.

Friday, March 8, 2013

The Goth Closet (as opposed to the Closet Goth)

You can take the goth out of the closet, but you can't take the closet out of the goth.  Fortunately, it's a lot easier to dress in your own style when you're a bit older, I think, because 1) you are more likely to know what you like and what you look best in, and 2) you are more likely to care less about what other people think.  It also helps if your work environment is not anal about dress.

For example, today was our quarterly "Townhall Meeting" at work, where those of us in administration get together to hear about what all the other admin departments are doing.  Boring and not particularly relevant most of the time, but mandatory unless your particular department has deadlines approaching and you can either convince your supervisor to approve your absence, or somehow manage to 'forget' about the meeting.  Anyway, I showed up dressed in black skinny pants and matching corset-laced jacket, a black t-shirt with a glowing white ribcage and spine on the front, flat zebra-striped Airwalks with pink dots on them, and my elegantly understated snake vertebrae earrings.  This is NOT even close to what anyone else in the room was wearing, but I sat at the same table as my conservatively dressed department director, and she didn't bat an eye.  Actually, she likes quite a few items in my wardrobe; my ankle-length Tripp bondage skirt is a favorite of hers! 

Unfortunately, I wasted my 20s, 30s and most of my 40s in corporate jobs wearing clothes that didn't really fit who I was.  Or maybe they did actually fit who I was at the time, because I had NO idea who I was!  As a result, I never really felt 'put together', and I had a ton of pieces in my closet that I liked but that didn't always match anything else.  Those that DID match something always got worn with the same thing, with very little variation.  Fortunately, I did occasionally listen to the little voices in my head (what, you don't hear them, too??) that said yes, buy that boring classic suit, but get it in tangerine instead of tan, and wear an awesome pin on the lapel, like that gold outline of an arching, hissing, bristle-furred cat with red eyes.  And fun t-shirts were safe, because I only wore those at home, anyway.  But I looked like 'everyone else', not like myself.  The only outlet my REAL self had was bellydancing.  I was a professional bellydancer for almost 20 years, and the costumes I made and bought were always influenced by what inspired ME, not by what I thought other people would like. 

Even after moving to my current job, I was still very hesitant about changing my (non)style.  I have this huge fear (no, it's genuine terror) of looking like an awful woman I saw in San Francisco in the 70s, when I was still a teen.  From the neck down she looked like a 20-year-old with a decent figure, dressed in a miniskirt and black knee boots, but she had the face of a 60+ woman, complete with white hair and saggy wrinkles.  Aaaccckkk!!!

Finally, after over ten years of being in my current, non-corporate job, I did a HUGE, MAJOR overhaul of my closet, and my motto became:  "If it doesn't BEG you to wear it, get rid of it."  I couldn't believe how much I got rid of, or how liberated I felt while doing it!  And when I was done, I had ROOM in my closet for everything I kept and more.  At that point, I was able to let my 'babybat' come out to play, under close supervision, of course!

I started by looking online and in stores and just finding out what I like.  I discovered that I really enjoy themed tops, i.e. those featuring bats, bones, skulls, whole or partial skeletons, Grim Reapers, quotes/sayings, and of course, band logos.  I also love wild shoes, especially those with patterns, platforms, buckles, and big heels, both chunky and stiletto, and patterned legwear of all kinds.  I don't have a specific style of goth that I wear all the time.  Some days I'm into t-shirts, pants and boots, some days I feel like tight skirts and heels, while other days I want to dress like Stevie Nicks. (Mmmmm, Stevie...)  And every once in a while I just want to look like the girl next door, only better. 

Today, I have a terrific assortment of pants, skirts, tops and shoes that I can mix and match, and not all of them are goth-themed or black, as there are days when I don't particularly WANT to look goth-themed or wear black.  Quite a few of them have come from thrift stores or through private sales on LiveJournal, Etsy, or  I am the proud owner of three pairs of vintage shoes; I don't know how I lived without my Mudd platform Maryjanes, my beat-up Anarchy buckled boots, and my Demonia 4-inch platforms!  (Although I still have to practice walking a bit more in those Demonias...)  One of my favorite shirts is black, with purple words on the front that say: "It's okay to be jealous, not everyone can be me." 

So, how did you choose/find YOUR style?  What begs you to wear it?  Give me all the gory details. 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Hello! :-)

Hmmm, I had set this blog up months ago, then totally stopped working on it because I wasn't sure what to say.  But just now when I checked, I saw that I have a follower already, and I haven't written a thing!  So I guess my first thing to say should be, "Thank you!" to The Professor for being my first follower.  :-)

I guess the next thing to do is to introduce myself. 

As you can see, my name is Lucretia (yes, it really IS), and I am an ElderGothBabyBat.  I know, that sounds like an oxymoron, but in my case it's true.  I should have been a goth in the 1980s, but I didn't even know what that was then because they barely existed in the U.S. before that, when I was in high school.  I think that waayyy too many of us ended up as "goths that never were" because we never had a chance to develop, born in just the wrong time and/or place so that we fell through the cracks.  I'm not sure who all of us became, but it wasn't who we were meant to be.  I know that is true of me.

I graduated from high school in June 1979; we had exactly ONE goth in my school, and she was in my Shakespeare class.  I used to stare enviously at her every day, wishing I could hang out with her and also wear all black, have pale skin, dye my hair black, and generally look incredible like she did.  Of course, being a shy bookworm (we'd say 'geek' now), I didn't do any of those things, or even talk to her.  I was much too shy.  But it wasn't until a few years ago that I FINALLY got a clue as to (among other things) why I love bats, mummies, witches, skeletons, museums and memento mori, why black has been my favorite color since I was old enough to color, why 'Dark Shadows' was my favorite TV show when I was in the first grade, why I love Edgar Allen Poe tales so much, and why I HATE being in the sun.  So I'm the right age to be an ElderGoth, but still so new in the subculture that I consider myself to be a BabyBat.  I don't have a problem with that moniker, although I know some do.  Being a mom does that to you.

Other personal facts you may (or may not) be interested in:  I'm married (third time) and have a 23-year-old son and ten cats. Fortunately, 5.5 of them are black or very dark, which makes it a bit easier to wear black clothing, if you know what I mean.  Unfortunately, three are orange and 1.5 are white.  I own stock in those sticky roller refills...  I have a Master's degree in Applied Anthropology, and my dream job is to work in a museum, preferably with ancient Egyptian mummies.  Currently I work at a university in Administration.  Bleah.

For now, at least, this blog is going to focus on finding my way through the morass of clothes, music, and other subcultural markers with the idea of not looking/acting/seeming like "mutton dressed as lamb". ::shudders:: (For those of you who have never heard that expression, it means a mature person trying to look and act like someone MUCH younger.)  Having recently reached the half-century mark, I don't think that tutus and cyberdreads are really ME, but I'm not into the Victorian styles either, much as I love looking at them on others.  I don't mind going to the occasional club, but I don't want that to be my only expression of 'gothness'.  And I'd love to hear from other older goths who are also trying to find (or have found) a good balance between being true to their own personal music and living relatively peacefully in this rather dull and boring mundane culture.

Well, I think that's enough about me for now.  How about YOU?  What's the thing you love most about the goth subculture?