Saturday, 12 April 2008


I think my proclivity toward all things shmata is genetic. I'll probably continue to think so no matter how much people laugh at me for it. All kinds of people on both sides of my family have been involved in the rag trade in some fashion (ha!) or another.

Viz. my cousin Tracy. She's the driving force of Abbey Hill Design in North Bay, Ontario. Her mother Gisela worked in the costume shop at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, where Tracy and her sibs grew up. Her paternal grandmother, my great aunt, designed and made costumes for community theatre in Yorkshire, England. The one time I visited Aunt Edith I wondered what was in her locked front room, so she showed me. I remember feeling like Aladdin discovering the cave full of treasures when she opened the doors. Exquisite Belle Epoque gowns, hats, feathered fans -- be still my beating, pubescent heart. No wonder Tracy became a designer. Genetic predetermination.

Yes, I still believe in free will.

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