Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette

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Today's Adventures

We went out to a metaphysical / paranormal show at the Mattoon mall today. It was much bigger and better than the last one we saw there.

Akasha Zamora sells all kinds of Pagan and New Age stuff. That includes some very nice lasercut wood, 3D printed knickknacks, and T-shirts that can be customized for color/size. Since they're local and I wasn't going to buy off the rack, we plan to order some things from them after the mid-month poetry sale.

Unusual Oddities has assorted jewelry including cloak clasps and earrings with dichroic glass. I bought a whole bunch of the earrings, some for me and some for other folks. The Kraken ones -- a kraken and a sailboat charms with mermaid-patterned dichroic glass -- caught my eye first and then I got a little carried away.

Void Works has horror artwork and woodwork. The woodwork combines several motifs I've seen separately, but never together before. The artist burns lichtenberg figures into wood, a type of fractal pattern sometimes created by lightning strikes. Some of these are then filled with glow-in-the-dark resin. We bought a small one, and it's gorgeous. This artist is currently setting up an Etsy shop, so the artwork should soon be available through that site.

Lex's Lucky Rocks is a rockhound, rather than an actual shop, out of Arthur, Illinois. They travel around to different events. Lots of cool stuff, would love to shop more when I have more funds available. I noticed one splendid item, out of my price range, but would make a perfect scrying bowl for technomages: a half-sphere bowl of bismuth with rainbow crystals on the inside. Some of their other items were quite reasonably priced.

11th Hour Art has some nice charcoal illustrations, some featuring very old cartoon characters. My partner Doug bought one of these.

Incompetent Adventures includes paintings in several styles among other things. What I thought was very well done frisket masking? Is actually freehand painting done with a tiny brush. Daaaaamn. My partner Doug bought a spectacular painting of Harley Quinn and the Joker. It matches exactly none of the decoration in our house, and we don't care.  If you like stylized art done in sharp-edged colorblocking, definitely check out this artist.  More shaded works were also available.

Jennifer David Hesse writes cozy mysteries. (We had a fun talk about genres and their names.) I bought Midsummer Night's Mischief, the first in the Wiccan Wheel Mystery Series. There are five so far, with the sixth coming out at the end of this month.

The mall made most excellent use of its empty space, by the way, and had a whole room of local authors. \o/

A point for event managers: One vendor complained that they could not do electronic transactions because their table (and several nearby ones) had no signal. There are several ways to solve this.

* Free: Walk around your venue and map which areas have bad, intermittent, or no signal. Discount tables in those locations, so that vendors who use cash only don't have to pay for a service they won't use and people who need a connection won't get stuck where there isn't one.

* Pretty cheap: Buy a device that picks up a signal from your router and bounces it. They're normally used to turn corners, they're affordable, and often sold in sets.

* Expensive: Devices that boost the signal strength itself are more expensive and power-hungry, but better at solving certain types of blindspot problems.

We went out for supper at Taco Bell, where we discovered some accessibility fail. A soda dispenser that runs several things through the same nozzle creates a contamination problem. For us, it's caffeine. Some other people can't have sugar, artificial sweeteners, certain food colors, citrus, etc. That can make it unsafe for people to drink out of those machines. And if the beverages are filled out of sight of customers, people may not KNOW why they had a bad reaction to something normally safe. It's a significant hazard. So watch out for these at restaurants, if there is ANY beverage unsafe for you. Encourage owners to use machines with a separate nozzle for each beverage to avoid this problem (and potential lawsuits).  Note that single-button/single-nozzle machines are also more accessible to vision-impaired customers who can count them and push the correct button, once an employee has said "The Sprite is in nozzle 3" or whatever.  We told the staff and manager, who were all very apologetic, and after some finagling we managed to find a beverage through a different machine that we could have. The pineapple freeze is most excellent, and similar to pineapple Jaritos.

Then we went back to the mall for clothes shopping. I've been needing to get new short pants for months. I found one in turquoise with a cream floral print, and another style with trim on the ends that I bought in black, dark blue, dark teal, and plum. Yes, that's me using the "buy all the colors I like" trick once I find a garment that fits (and was on sale). I think the only thing left that I desperately need is orange, because several tops only match one bottom that is falling apart. It's hard to find an orange I can actually wear. My old capris are pumpkin orange; I can wear that and rust, not much else.

All in all, it was a very successful day. This was supposed to be a writing day, but my partner Doug insisted the show was worth seeing, which it definitely was, so I'm glad I went.
Tags: event, illinois, magic, paganism, personal, review, shopping
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