It's hard to wear more than one hat, yet sometimes that's what it takes.
Yesterday, at Toronto's Word on the Street, my hat just happened to be a kitchen colander with a rat tied to each handle. Oh, yes, and I was painted green.
This was in my Little Witch Press personae, a.k.a. Sandi Witch (and illustrator Elizabeth Todd Doyle), and I was at the book fair to perform. I was also there to sell books, but I never worry all that much about selling books at events like this -- they tend to sell themselves when you're painted green and have a colander on your head.
Because we were reading/performing at the festival, we had automatic entrance to the VIP lounge, which was where Big Name Authors such as John Ralston Saul and David Suzuki and (be still my beating heart) Jian Ghomeshi were supposed to hang out.
As you imagine this scene, please keep in mind -- I am painted green.
So while I made an immediate and (perhaps) lasting impression, I still came across as a lunatic of reportable proportions.
The most famous person I saw while in there was Dave Bidini, who, while incredibly talented and clearly a Big Name Writer, is also one of those ubiquitous Torontonians that I've fought to get the server's attention at places like La Hacienda since the late 1980s. So I was more or less thisclose to asking him if he wanted to swap his trademark fedora for my equally-fetching colander. I think he noticed me eyeing his hat, because he friggin' FLED the VIP lounge.
I may have told Allison Baggio, who was sitting at my table, that Susan and I were writers of erotica.
However, when I opened newspapers this morning, I didn't notice that any of the Big Name Writers (lookin' at you, Jian Ghomeshi) had their photos plastered across the broadsheets. And, well. I did. Apparently in The Toronto Star as well.
It ain't easy being green, but sometimes, it gets you noticed.