I got to feeling blue today, overwhelmed by the mass ocean that is Etsy. Trying to decipher the swim, stay afloat, not drown in the process. Then I got this kind e-mail from a fellow Etsian, Claudescreations. She invited me to do an interview on her blog. In all the years I’ve interviewed others, no one has ever asked to interview me. It’s a parculiar feeling, a bit odd, a bit sad, a bit sweet.
So, I wrote what I did and let it go. As a writer, I could have edited the thing to death. Searching for the perfect thought, the quippiest ad line. But I didn’t. I stayed pretty true, I think. Maybe, not. I don’t know. I’m really not used to people asking me about me.
And the”me” thing. If you know me or have gotten an e-mail from me (duh, on my part) you know my given name is not Dahlila. Sigh. It’s true. But Dahlila wasn’t just some name grabbed out of the sky. She’s not a trick, nor a falsity. She’s not on my birth certificate, but she’s very much a part of me.
Way back in 1999, when home computers were still fairly new, I had an epistolary e-mail friendship with a gentleman. (Oh, my. . . ) This was a man enamored w/Africa, Hemingway. Think Out of Africa meets The English Patient. This was his dream and our “letters” were all written as telegrams:
“My dearest Dahlila <stop>
Message just brought to me <stop>
Sitting on deck, long day, spot of gin in the glass <stop>
Mapping next trip into the bush <stop>
Need to know number of steamer trunks you will be carrying <stop>
Remember dinners are formal, as you yanks say, black tie <stop>
fondly yours . . . ”
these telegrams went on for months. And that’s when Dahlila was born. Dahlila, a 20th century woman, daring, brash, adventurous. Now she is my alter ego, my artist, alias, nom de guerre. But in business she’s getting harder and harder to keep. Still, she is like an old, dear, friend. And I would prefer to keep her close. So if you got confused, don’t be. Dahlila and I are here together.