Tuesday, May 19, 2009

An Anatevka Post ...

So what's an Anatevka post? Anatevka is a song from the Broadway musical "Fiddler on the Roof." It's opening lyrics rather describe what I am feeling coming on with this post.

A little bit of this, a little bit of that.
A pot, a pan, a broom, a hat...

I have no idea where this this photo of an (I assume) community theatre production of "Fiddler.." took place. But it's a colourful, and gets the idea across.

This morning I went out to see if my Coral Bells had started blooming yet - and as you can see from the bottom photo, they're alllllmost there! Hurray! I love them. They're such a hardy, but delicate flower.
But, then I discovered two lovely teeny tiny pink blooms that are growing in two pots left from last year. I have no idea what I had planted or what they're going to grow into being (they might be blooms from that decorative grass-like stuff). I can't wait to figure out what I planted last summer - and which actually made it through a bitterly cold winter - in a clay pot, no less!

Some of you know that I operated a restaurant/inn for almost 20 years in upstate New York, and that I had a music box shop that was attached to the dining room for many of those years. Now, I love music boxes and have seen just about every single one ever made (okay - so I'm exaggerating - but only a wee bit!). Consequently, it's a little tough for me to be astounded about a music box. Even if I haven't seen it, I've probably seen something similar.

Well, I have NEVER seen anything like these music boxes crafted by Stollwerk in Germany. They take my breath away.
What makes these early 1904 music boxes special? They play rather like an Edison phonograph, though more accurately, more like a classic Regina disc player, even though they're shaped like Edisons. Now. Notice, that these are made of foil - not heavy metal. And, if you're from Europe, of course, you recognize Stollwerck as a famous fine candy and chocolatier.

That's right. These play music box discs made of chocolate! Real chocolate! Play or eat your Debussy - your choice! I just can't imagine how magical it must have been. I would so love to have one of these to add to my collection. Most of my music boxes are contemporary (mid-20th-Century to contemporary) - but I have a few antique ones - and one of these would fit right in tune!

Read much more about them here.

Speaking of music boxes, thombeau posted this outlandish photo - and I want it as well. (Have you ever met such a greedy greedy boy as I?!) I don't know exactly what it is - obviously it has flashing coloured faery lights. But, I'm convinced it plays music as well! I'm hoping it's a Piaf tune!

Last weekend, we re-watched one of my favorite Robert Altman films - and one of my absolute favorite westerns - McCabe and Mrs. Miller. This lyrical tale, starring the very young and-oh-so-ethereally-gorgeous Julie Christie and Warren Beatty, was the first real vision I ever received about what the glamorous Old West was really like. Less romance and more filth. Less legend and more stink. Less bravery and more bullying.
For several seasons while it ran, I was a huge fan of Deadwood on Showtime. It was another tale that tried to explode the mystery and romance of what the wild west was really like. And it did a dandy job. But, when I saw McCabe again, I realized that Altman achieved something the directors and cinematographers on Deadwood never did - he made all the muck and dirt and rank fetid rot and mould actually look breathtakingly beautiful...no mean achievement that!

I like the way Altman uses Presbyterian Church (the name of the town) to explore how society and civilization required both innocence and evil to make everything come together. There are moments in this film that make my eyes well up just because of the sheer artistry and heart breaking beauty of the moment or image.
This is not an easy accomplishment in a tale of a squalid opium addicted madame (Christie) and a two-bit gambler and would be whorehouse entrepeneur (Beatty - in his best ever performance, in my opinion). Such is not the stuff that dreams are made of! The cast includes future Altman favorites, such as Shelley Duvall, René Auberjonois, and Keith Carradine.

From the first song (The Stranger Song), the entire score written and performed by Leonard Cohen is haunting, memorable, and spot on target every time it's used.
Probably this is not a film for you to watch with your younger children (sometimes the language is rough - and it is about prostitutes and their employers). But, if you want to see a poignant and elegant ode to a time in our past we tend to romanticize, it's well worth the trip to the video store!

... and another terrific blogging artist and craftsman
If you aren't familiar with Carolee Clarke of The King of Mice Studios - be sure to pay her a visit. I just love her charming creations. She calls her world 'whimsical and wicked' - and I think it's a perfect description!

That domed chest is just lovely ... my sister, as a child, would have absolutely killed for it!...maybe still would!

How fun is this clock? I love the polka dots and the checkerboard and, of course, the fab full moon! And it just so happens my kitchen is .... orange! hmmmmm
If I had an enchanted garden - which I don't - but if I did - this is the sign I would want to announce it!
My absolute favorite two pieces of hers are an incredible domed chest titled Carnivale Diabolique Chest, and a similar shaped pieced titled Carnivale de Mystique Chest. I love the shape and the delightfully whimsical diabolical images! Someday when I'm a rich famous artist, I shall commission her to make one for my very own!
I hope you'll take a visit to see her other treasures at King of Mice Studios.

...and! an announcement for another exciting upcoming blog event ... it's the Second Annual Mad Hatter's Tea Party at A Fanciful Twist! Click on the banner below to get all the inside scoop - and some fab pictures of last year's event! It sounds like it's going to be another revelry not to be missed! So go sign up and join in on the fun!
Okay. I've done it. I've really done. I've eaten my own record for the most rambling, disjoined and never-ending post in the history of blogdom. It's time for me to make some lunch and then get to the studio to finish up Ms. Starr (you don't know about Ms. Star, yet, do you! Well another post!).
OH! And welcome to my newest followers! Welcome, welcome, welcome! Sit right down and have a little nibble of something delicious!Now, go make something beautiful - or look at something beautiful - or just think some beautiful thoughts.
¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*´¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´♥ Tristan ♥

edited on Wednesday morning - don't forget to sign up on last Sunday's post to enter the mini-theatre giveaway prize!


Tamerie Shriver Halliday said...

I am just stopping by to say hello and to let you know that I have given you an award on my blog.


Anonymous said...


Sounds like an interesting movie. My father loooooooves westerns. When he comes to visit, it is "western city" the whoooooole visit. I bet he's seen em' all. Of course, living in Texas there is a whole alot of that going on. YAHOO!!!

Planted most of the Lily of the Valleys and am going to put some in pots to bring in the house until they get larger. I am amazed they still looked perky when they arrived yesterday.

Thanks again!!


Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Tristan...the bottom photo----where did you find that shot of ME????? LOL!!!!!
You find the best stuff...I swear....not fair. ;)


http://afancifultwist.typepad.com said...

I LOOOOOOOVE your post, I love it. Okay, I am about to go into a coronary attack, my grandmother gave me a music box when I was 5 or so, that was a gramaphone, and I have no recollection of what happened to it. OMY GOODNESSS!!! You jogged a memory I can't let go of.. where oh where...

Oh Leonard and his Tea and Oranges in my ears... Love him...

OH and Danka so much for posting my lil' flyer ;) "If I was a rich 'girl,' " song is Post appropriate I think ;) But if I was I would have every one flown here for the party in the flesh...

OH AND CAROLEEE!! Isn't she amazing, just amazing!!

Okay, now look who is all over the place ;)

Sparkly sparkles abound, V

(Did you say hotel, music box store - you are just full of magical surprises!! FAB)

DollZandThingZ said...

Love MCabe and Mrs. Miller...love Leonard to this day...and love your rambling, eye-candy packed post!

The warm weather at the end of this week will make those plantlets grow for sure.. and your coral bell plant is lovely!

Lois said...

Hi Tristan!
It would take to much time and space to comment on everything in this post so I will make one or two brief comments.
The music boxes are just wonderful as are everything else.
Please keep posting on the flower pot. Don't you love it when a mystery plant just pops up?
Thanks for sharing.
PS: I love the music that plays on your blog while I am reading it. Sometimes I'll pop onto your blog just to hear the music while I am working on something else on the computer. You have excellent taste in music. :)

Unknown said...

Loved Deadwood...took a while to get used to the profanity and raw life...but after a while I did not notice all that. Just a well written plot, well acted script. And I still do not utter profanities...I avoided the monkey see...monkey do scenario.

Really enjoyed your "rambling" today!

Carolee said...

LOVED your Anatevka post, and can't thank you enough for the kind words about my work!

Your blog is always such a delight, and now it had Leonard Cohen music too (swoon!)...I recently purchase the Live in London CD and it's been in almost constant rotation in my CD player...

And those music boxes....COVET!

Oh! And I cannot wait for Vanessa's Mad Tea Party. Everything she does is filled with magic and enchantment. :)

(I think this was just an Anatevka comment, hehe!)

~ Carolee

Sue said...

Terrific Anatevka post! Fiddler on the Roof ...one of my favorite movies, as was McCabe and Mrs. Miller (will have to watch it again). Carolee's work is fabulous love.love.

Your ramblings are definitely entertaining Tristan, I love it when you ramble.

mo.stoneskin said...

I think I'd feel a bit bad if I ate one of those music boxes, they don't like they want to be eaten!

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Dearest Tristan,
You really know your movies! My husband and I have an extensive DVD collection but we don't have this Altman movie you speak so highly of...I must rent it out! Have you ever seen The Lion in Winter with Katharine Hepburn and Peter O'Toole? The acting is seamless and it is my favorite movie. What a great post! Merci. Anita

Anonymous said...

Love the music boxes. Some of the old ones were so intricate.
While my DH loves westerns & I know he watches them for the horses & the shoot-em-up scenes I don't watch them. Like I said before... I'm just not a cowgirl, western, campout girl... My idea of roughing-it is a B&B with a canopy bed, imported linens & room service!! LOL!!
Have a Wonderful Day!!

HiHo said...

Dead Wood! we loved that show, we were just talking the other day how much we enjoyed the evenings spent watching it. We will be looking up the movie, thanks "you
F%#*!ing C#%"! S!%*#! " gotta love all of Dead Wood's rich dialog!LOL.
Have to go and create. Heidi

Anonymous said...

Tristan dahling!
Firstly, how did you get that picture of me and my sister dancing? Tee hee. Ok not really us...maybe in our first incarnation :-)
I have been lurking for a few weeks now, over from the fabulous Vanessa's post. You are a treat! The pink saturdays have made me faint dead away more than once, I am plotting on how to own your dia de las muertas shrine, I love your penchant for Ms. Marie A, AND you made my surly teenage son howl with laughter with the St Francis de la Sissies video! It's true, you see something new everytime you watch!
Also, love your taste in movies! I am a Turner Classic Movies junquie! Half the time I'm not really sure what peeps are talking about around the water cooler when they start in about last night's this or that show.
And my Cowboy likes, well, westerns (go figure)! Our all time A#1 favorite is Unforgiven, directed by Mr. Eastwood himself-i would love to know your thoughts on that one.
Thanks for letting me babble!
Have a scrumptious day!
PS I am offically going to start a blog of my own between now and June 27th so i can participate in Mad Hatter Tea Party 2009, too!YAY for V to the V partees!

Glennis said...

Now this just isn't fair!! Too many wonderful things to look at. Just when I am amazed at one, I scroll further and am amazed again. I have the attention span of a gnat and can't remember one wonderful thing after being shown another. What IS that Paris shiny blue thing, anyway??

And your coral bells are wonderful - I love those varieties with the dark and mottled purpley leaves.

Nan said...

Hi Tristan...First off hats off to you for winning MWO...I was quite confused when you said you lost but then I have ADD tendancies myself...the attention span of a gnat...wait..let's go ride bikes..wait back to this delightful post. Love the music box! I am going to watch Mccabe and Mrs. Miller..love your garden and the music...love your place. My mind is positively charged for the day. Now I must go shop or create...what order????? Feel like Alice's white rabbit! Have fun today!

Anonymous said...

The gentleman in the fur coat is very Ed Goreyesque!
I too have a special place in my heart (unfortunately not anywhere else at the moment) for music boxes, these are specially neat :)