Treasures Of a Bronx Warrior is Available for ADVANCE-Sale!!!
Treasures of a Bronx Warrior, Collection I, II, III is available for advance order online at the author’s “spotlight” onLulu.com. Books will be made available on Amazon and other sites March 2018. Thank you all for your patience and support! See full press releaseHERE.
Hey, welcome to my Coffee and Cocktails Cafe and thanks for popping by!
Well, it is early into the new year and I am happy to state that so far 2018 is being very good to the ole gal. First, I changed my blog name to: COFFEE & COCKTAILS CAFE – three things I seriously enjoy. Second, my move to New York is on hold as I continue to juggle future job possibilities, my knitting business, my writing projects and debt all while working a “regular” job which is slowly trying to suck the life out of me. Ah, no worries, I have taken on the responsibility of thinking more positively and being just slightly narcissistic in my approach to gaining the things in life that I truly desire and deserve. New York can wait.
Hallelujah, I FINALLY completed a memoir slash coffee table book in honor of my late mother, Doris Banbury. I mentioned her many times before in this blog and while it has been two years since we buried her, the pain still stands. But, Doris was a photographer hobbyist who, when she was in her 20s, enjoyed chasing and “shooting” A-list celebrities in New York, her hometown. I gathered what photos I could, copyright and turned them into a book with the few memories I could get from Doris about her picture-taking days. My goal was to immortalize Doris and I achieved that goal. For example: a select few of Doris’s work is in the permanent collection in the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. And a select few of Doris’s works were featured in an exhibit and book at SF MOMA.
And last, there is a book, well books. Treasures of a Bronx Warrior is broken up in a 3-book collection that includes Doris’s photos and dialogue, well basically me badgering my poor mother into relaying stories to me about her photographic adventures. The banter between mother and daughter may seem strange to some, I had an odd way of showing affection and we loved to tease each other. But, it is amusing none the less. It also includes a bit of Doris’s family history.
I have mentioned the book before, but I just want to state that it was a long road to getting it completed. I had a lot of starts and stops along the way. At this point, hey, it is what it is and it will be presented as such.
Thanks for visiting my “cafe.” I’ll return as soon as the books arrive! Cheers! L.D.
One morning I awoke early to the tortured scratching of both cats scurrying across my forever-receding five miles of forehead. They are elderly yet they can find time to scare the shit out of me! I sat up in bed and I wondered three things. 1) Why do I have to paint on my eyebrows, what happened to them? 2) I never thought my two fourteen year-old sick cats (boy has diabetes, girl now has kidney issues) would out live my mother, they did. 3) I am a loner who has contemplated taking a “leap of faith” for nearly twenty years. Twenty!
I usually contemplate my life during the month of August, my birthday month. One more year of contemplation won’t kill me, so why not make it public, hmm?
So, let’s see I am a mid-life loner, orphaned with dying cats and few friends, most of whom are living their lives and loving it. I finally accept that I have lived in fear my entire life. I think I already stated this fact in another post. I am not afraid of failure, failure is inevitable. I am afraid of success.
I had a talk with one of my co-workers the other day, an easily annoyed, stressed woman who has a longtime boyfriend. We both have the same fear of success issue. But, she overcame her fear somewhat when after years of wanting that man, she finally got him. But, every day she fears he will die, or be badly crippled or burned or whatever.
I certainly don’t want to take that leap and stress over things. I don’t want to finally find the right man only to worry when he does not call that he is somewhere left for dead. A leap of faith is not only mandatory for me, but it must happen for my personal health and well-being. You see, my 9-2-5- is sucking the life out of me and my creative projects are suffering, not good. As for how I will leap, I will accept help and support – although, asking for help can be hard for some of us prideful brown skinned women. But, I will ask in the only way I can accept, positive thoughts and good energy from anyone reading this post. PS-forgive that I have not been reading other people’s posts, I can barely find time to do my own, but I will catch up, I will.
Also, I have removed myself from negative people and from people with whom I give all my attention, but they in turn give me crickets. This includes noted people who constantly ask you to “buy my CD,” or, “go see my film,” or whatever they are poaching. Some noted folks refuse to acknowledge what their fans are about, they give you “dust” because you ask the same of them that they ask of you. How selfish is that? We all of us deserve praise for our achievements, no matter what we achieve, right?
So, from now on, I will “follow” and “like” only those who follow, like and acknowledge me, period. I won’t cut off those I already follow, but I refuse to continue to praise anyone who does not give me praise. Acceptance and praise, I have come to learn, is vital in one’s emotional growth and mental development. I never gave a damn about anyone giving me praise before, but without my mother I now understand that reciprocal compliments matter in bringing positive energy into my life.
So, back to that morning when I awoke early to the tortured scratching of both cats scurrying across my forever-receding five miles of forehead. I went back to sleep, I had at least an hour before I had to rise for work. When I DID wake up I felt the scraping lick of my boy cat’s sand paper tongue against my eye lids. Ah, pets. My girl cat, who sleeps to the left me and who is afraid of AIR, was soft-licking my arm. This is how I wake up these days, morning kisses from two cats. But, instead of thinking “what a painful morning I am having,” or, “my cats are old and sick and they are going to leave me alone and old” like I normally do, I felt assured that the leap of faith had in fact begun. I state that because I am working harder on my creative projects no matter how tired I am, and I am corresponding with a man; we both enjoy writing each other. Now, I have not dated or acknowledged a partner since the last five or six Millenniums, so for me this is a nice beginning to a new life.
Just had to share that. Next time, I will focus blogging on my creative projects including my fiction novel, my knitting website and my mother’s photo book that I am currently revising.
Thanks for reading! Live, Love, Giggle and keep it positive. I will do the same. Cheers! LDS
The color BLUE is not my emotion, it is and always will be my favorite color.
What I learned about life is that I share with people all over the world a profound plethora of pain, a gripping pain with many attributes that has moved all of us to an embrace of sorrow. But, sorrow will not last as we all of us walk along a path of blessings and hope.
What I learned about life is that learning only ends when life ends. Since life will NEVER wait for me to “catch up” I must learn quickly and move as life moves, QUICKLY without regrets and fear.
You are cordially invited to view my mother Doris Banbury’s Private Photos of legendary stars in NYC in the 1950s.
Doris Banbury, Manhattan, NYC. 1950s, (Click the photo)
DURING THE 1950S IN HER HOMETOWN OF NEW YORK, DORIS BANBURY (1930-2015) HUNG OUT WITH LIKE-MINDED FRIENDS WHO LOVED TO CHASE AND PHOTOGRAPH A-LIST THEATRE, FILM, TELEVISION AND RADIO CELEBRITIES INCLUDING MARILYN MONROE; ELIZABETH TAYLOR AND SAMMY DAVIS JR. A SELECT FEW OF DORIS’S WORKS WERE PURCHASED BY SAN FRANCISCO MUSEUM OF MODERN ART (HERE IS DORIS’S PAGE ON SFMOMA WEBSITE HERE) AND A SELECT FEW OF DORIS’S WORK WAS FEATURED IN A 2010 SFMOMA EXHIBIT BY SANDRA PHILLIPS.
I have witnessed people go through life’s ‘transitions,’ and the challenges life has to offer. Some people live with very difficult challenges including Cancer and Leukemia. Despite it all, they hold down jobs, they have relationships, they carry on with their lives. Some of them even carry on with faith and a smile every single day. I have also witnessed people marry, have kids, become writers and playwrights, move to new states our out of country, get a new apartment or home. Despite life’s “challenges,” these folks have found their “BLISS” basically.
As for me, achieving my bliss is a constant struggle, not ashamed to admit it. But, I am working hard on achieving it. For instance, I am writing, well I have been for the past couple of years, my first fiction novel. I am grateful my “bliss,” writing AND knitting, has stayed with me all these years. My bliss is what keeps me centered and somewhat stress-free. The bad news; as I chase my bliss I am far behind with reading other people’s blogs and “thumbing up” or liking people’s posts on Facebook and Twitter and clicking on the “hearts” of people pictures on Instagram. I apologize for that; I will support more when I can.
Before I get back to writing I want the world to know, or whomever reads my posts, as I try to focus on my bliss I will take a brief “blog pause.” Until I return to blogging I hope everyone out there is focused on finding their own bliss, if you haven’t done so already. It truly is a wonderful feeling doing what you love and what keeps you centered.
Here’s to being blissful and fully centered. Have a great 4th! LDS
I was born and raised on a tiny island that sits nearly 49 square miles on top of the Pacific Ocean. Nowadays unfortunately San Francisco is nothing more than a place I outgrew. I no longer feel like I can flourish and shine here, all I do is pay bills, eat and pay rent, been doing that for years. I have always been practical, but lately while practicality is a necessity, it is also very tiresome, boring and unfulfilling.
It was time for me to move on years ago, but I never had enough encouragement, help and money to do so. And COURAGE, I am so afraid to take that “leap” only to find myself without food and shelter, the thought renders me physically sick. But, I am not without hope, I just need an incentive.
Well, that “incentive” is the high cost of living and constant loss of small businesses that I enjoyed frequenting. Plus, I have grown older and more set in my ways, that might be part of it, but the beauty that once was my city and the opportunities to flourish for an artist and writer like myself are all long gone.
Sure, online business are a great way to make money and thrive, but closer and more tactile businesses, places that used to be within reach including “mom and pop” stores are no longer a staple here and that saddens me. “Working class” can no longer afford to live in a city where Twitter, Silicon Valley and greedy, rude, evil landlords’ money is more valued. Course, it has always been the case where rich bowls over working class, I get it, but now the “sting” feels worse, mainly because working to pay bills never dies while doing what makes one happy usually becomes more of a dream than a reality. ~sigh~
One of the things that made me very happy was to visit a bead store when I worked for the City & County years ago. I spent almost all of my lunch hour at Beyond Beads at 1251 Howard Street, my only respite that was housed down the block from my job. I dreamed creations in my head as I sifted through strands and porcelain jars, trays and table settings filled with glass, stone, pearl and Austrian crystal beads to name a few. And, all the tools, chains and supplies I needed to make up whatever I imagined.
It was a small collection compared to a larger bead store, but I love the intimacy of Beyond Beads and the design and decor, high beamed white ceilings and odd drawings and paintings on the walls behind the counter had me feeling like I was in a creative artists’ abode rather than a retail shop.
Beyond Beads is owned by a quiet man who when I first met him was rather stiff, serious and slightly unfriendly at first glance. But, over time Gal Ben Shaul warmed up to me, well, I can be a chatty handful when I am in my zone. He was especially friendly when I visited after having recently learned Gal was closing shop.
I had not seen Gal in over four years since I was laid off work from the City & County. I learned Gal’s rent nearly tripled and I learned from one of the employees at General Bead that they owned the building Beyond Beads was housed in. Most of San Francisco commercial and residential rents have gone up, my rent goes up a percentage every year or so. I was not surprised, but I was a bit sad.
I will miss visiting Gal’s Beyond Beads, but I am sure he and his wife will flourish and find their other passions whatever they may be. Until then I will continue to move forward in my goal to move to NYC and live my life doing what makes ME happy. ~sigh~ I keep saying I will LEAP, but I am not yet there, but I am determined.
And when I do move I know living in a city where everyone’s hustle and ambitions is very “real” will work out just fine with me. Although, hustling is not my forte, I do believe I will flourish and my dreams will see a positive fruition.
As for my hometown? I was born and raised on a tiny island that sits nearly 49 square miles on top of the Pacific Ocean. Nowadays unfortunately San Francisco is nothing more than a place I outgrew. But, I am good with that. Maybe one day I’ll return to visit SF, maybe to live, who knows? But for now Beyond Beads and LD must move on and find our passions where they will allow us to flourish and shine! And there it is. Cheers!
I am up late on Sunday evening not at all happy to have only two days off to write, create, knit, do laundry, grocery shopping, etc. I can’t sleep, basically and when I cannot sleep I think of odd things. In this case, I remembered an article I wrote years ago about a girl I used to know. The title of the article, “The Risk and Reward of Reaching Out” was published in the San Francisco Chronicle paper.
It is not very hard for me to believe that I made my way through middle and high school without getting caught up in the drug culture of San Francisco during the 1970s and 1980s. Everyone I knew did them, but I simply was not interested. And I was not into “cliques” in school. Just because my friends did drugs did not mean I wanted to. I believed not doing drugs had to do with my mom, she never imbibed, nor did she drink while raising us. Unfortunately for many people including my old babysitters when I was a child and friends I grew up with, there was no escaping the drug fate.
In 2006 when I worked for the City and County of SF Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services as a clerk and I volunteered with homeless organizations, I was invited to write an article about the impact drugs had on me. The only thing I could think of was a cute little girl whom I grew up with in grade school, I called her “Cori” in the article. “Cori” was a cute caramel-complexioned chubby little girl, I was skinny as a rail. Seriously, my legs in knee high boots looked like pencils in cups, that’s how skinny I was. Kids teased us and called us “Cori and Lorrie, fat and skinny!” which we hated.
When I wrote the article I could not help but feel bad not just for “Cori”, but for the fact that I wrote about how tragic she turned out. I did not mean any malice, but it bothered me that she fell so hard. Of course, I later realized not everyone walks the same path, although the end result is and will always be the same. I am fine with what I wrote about “Cori.” And, although I no longer see her around anywhere I will always hope she left San Francisco for a better life somewhere. Hopefully that sentiment is true. If so, good luck to “Cori.”
“The Risk and Reward of Reaching Out” – by L.D. Sargent. Click HEREfor article.