This is my great-grandfather Barranti, my father’s father’s father, in the family grocery store. Details will follow — right now I have to get dressed for a day of adventure with my family and my Mother-in-Law.
This is my father’s maternal grandparents, Mateo and Eleanora Capizzi (Bup–probably for Pop–and Nono). They came to the U.S. from Sicily, possibly in 1912. Mateo was a laborer, maybe at a steel mill (my dad doesn’t remember, but I may call my Grandma later to ask).
More pictures below.
This photo is my Grammy, Lydia Jane, and my Great-Aunt, her older sister Edith Ann. I don’t know the exact date or where the picture was taken, but it would have been the early-to-mid 1930s. Edie was born in 1929 and Jane was born in 1930. I’m guessing they were 4 and 5.
And this is me and Grammy at my mom’s house in 2000, just before her 70th birthday:
GOOD GOD I WAS SO SKINNY. I think if I turned sideways, I disappeared. (That was right after Will and I broke up, so I was on a steady diet of vodka and, um, vodka.)
Both photos were stolen from my sister. More vintage photos at Paper Dolls For Boys.
This is my mom. Isn’t she pretty? I’d guess that’s around 1970. More Vintage Photos.
An interview! These questions come from Bethany Actually.
1. You live in Los Angeles. Why do you like living there? If you couldn’t live there, where would you want to live?
Los Angeles was the first city that I loved the instant I set foot in it. I fell in love first with the trees, and second with everything else. Right now, it is harder to like living here because we are so ridiculously poor. But it’s not impossible — and having a child is actually making me love it more because I am spending all my time with someone who is impressed if I take him around the block. We spend so much time at the zoo and the Autry Center and the many parks, not to mention just walking around.
If we couldn’t live here — well, we eventually want to move out to the desert, either in Pioneertown or out by Littlerock, and build a ranch. Or farm. Call it whatever pleases you.
But I’m going to pretend you asked where I’d want to live if we couldn’t be in Southern California at all. Because the first answer I came up with SHOCKED me. I would like to move back to New York and get a place in either Brooklyn or Queens. Now what you have to understand is that while New York City technically has five burroughs, I am from Manhattan and so as far as I am concerned there are no other burroughs. And yet, that is where I would go. Assuming that Will and Sam were agreeable.
(This is funny! Apparently a couple of years ago Whoorl asked me a similar question. I have NO MEMORY of that interview!)
2. I know you’re a Star Wars fan. What do you think of Star Trek, any of the permutations?
I think that if I sat down and watched it, I would LOVE Star Trek. I did watch TNG for a while when I was about 12, and I loooooooved Wesley Crusher. (I’ve met Wil Wheaton, and it was really cool because we met through a mutual friend who we both worked with at Metblogs so it wasn’t like meeting a celebrity at all — as an actor or as a writer, which is what he is known for primarily now — but was just two writers meeting through a friend. Which was awesome.) Anyway, TNG: I don’t remember much about it, to be honest. Later in my teens I watched most of TOS, which I found moderately delightful as a kitsch piece. Now that I have seen a lot of old sci-fi movies like Beast of Yucca Flats, I am positive I would adore TOS. I saw one episode of Deep Space Nine in college, and it was BRILLIANT. Honestly, part of the reason I never watched it again was because I was sure it couldn’t hold up. I’ve never seen Voyager or Enterprise.
3. Who taught you to knit; how old were you when you learned; and what was the first complete project you knitted?
I taught myself to knit. When I was 16 or 17, my friend Joni tried to teach me, but I just couldn’t get the hang of it so she taught me to crochet instead. Ten years later my friend Cassie gave me Stitch & Bitch for Christmas and I was knitting within a day or two. I honestly have NO IDEA what the first project I finished was. I do know that my longest-going UFO (unfinished object) is a seed stitch scarf in off-white alpaca that I will most likely never finish.
4. If you had limitless resources and time, where would you like to travel?
Can I just say everywhere? If not, I will limit it to two places: the American Southwest (we’ve been planning a driving tour for about eight years now) and the Mediterranean. I am DESPERATE to go to Sicily. It’s where my family is from, several generations ago, and most of the family history is lost (or known only to distant cousins). There is a cooking school, which as far as I know is not connected to any of my relatives, that I have to go to before I die. I also want to see Greece and Spain.
5. What’s your favorite food to prepare?
This is a hard one! I love cooking, I love eating, and I love feeding people. There is very little I don’t like to prepare. I love cooking with meat, which is funny because I was raised vegetarian. I love making pies — the fruit kind, though I’m sure meat pies are nice. Oh, and the pizza kind!
I will play along by emailing interview questions to the first three people that respond to this. (If you want to comment but don’t want to be interviewed, that’s fine! Just say so.)
1. Take a picture of yourself right now.
2. Don’t change your clothes, don’t fix your hair…just take a picture.
3. Post that picture with NO editing. (NB: I did re-size mine and orient it so my head is up.)
4. Post these instructions with your picture.
You know you want me.
|I will marry Sean Bean.|
|After a wild honeymoon, We will settle down in Montenegro in our fabulous Shack.|
|We will have 2 kid(s) together.|
|Our family will zoom around in a green Mazda 3.|
|I will spend my days as a Writer, and live happily ever after.|
Two of these are actually true! And this apartment is a lot like a shack. But the Mazda is red.
So Scott did this meme of books you’ve read, and one of the instructions is to cross off books you never plan to read or “were forced to read in school and hated.” To which I offer a gigantic “WTF?” because you’ve still read it either way. But that got me thinking about The Bridges of Madison County.
Shortly after the height of its popularity, but before it became a movie, I read it. I did this because I wanted to be able to say with authority that it’s a piece of shit, and have specifics to back up that belief. Unfortunately, the book is SO BAD that I have been too depressed about it for the intervening 15 years to say anything other than, “I can’t believe I read the whole thing.”
The fact that the movie was made by Clint Eastwood only depresses me further, because it means I will never be able to say I’ve watched all of his movies. At least, not without a vat of tequila and some cocaine. And also someone to strap me to a chair and tape my eyelids open.
For obvious reasons, I have not read The Da Vinci Code. I am perfectly happy to believe it stinks without finding out for myself.
The meme is behind the cut.
So, Will has a super-power. Whenever he drives the car (not on a day trip with the family, but if he uses it for several days, say to get to and from work because Vera is in the shop), he fucks with the electrical system (or something) and the clock loses time. This only happens when Will drives the car, and it usually loses about half an hour all at once and then slowly loses more time until I reset the clock and take over driving the car again.
I was going to write about this and ask you all to help me figure out a reasonable, scientific explanation, but screw that. It is obvious that it is a super-power, and he is using it for evil. The evil of DRIVING ME INSANE.
So on this lovely Friday I would like you all to tell me: What is YOUR super-power, and do you use it for good or for evil? Please feel free to write about it here or at your own blog.