September 9th, 2013


Happy Half-Century, Sis!

So, on this fine day in 1963, my sister Kathleen was born. She's also on LJ, as puppetmaker40, and blogs there more often than I do. As her journal title indicates, she makes puppets. Among other things.

She made a puppet from a pattern, dressed it up as Jean-Luc Picard with a toddler's Star Trek uniform, and from there went on to make puppet replicas of all the Doctors (up to that point), several Klingons and the list has gone on from there. She put some of her puppets up for sale at the art show at a convention and offered a free puppetry lesson to the buyer. Thus she met Peter David when he bought one of her Klingons. Peter commissioned her to do a look-a-like puppet of a character in a movie he'd scripted to give to the actor as a gift. I remember her watching a tape of the rough cut that Peter had sent her, trying to get the costume from every possible angle in order to replicate it in puppet form.

She made a puppet of Morpheus, from the comic book Sandman, and gave it to Neil Gaiman. She also made a puppet of Peloquin from the film Nightbreed, which she gave to Clive Barker. (Clive Barker phoned my sister when the Peloquin puppet arrived at his mailing address and cheerfully let her know that he was scaring his dogs with it.)

You can see her thanked in the acknowledgements of Neil Gaiman's graphic novel Mr. Punch, because she put him in touch with the Center for Puppetry Arts in Atlanta when he was doing his research for that particular project.

She was an active member of the Druid Hills High School Science Fiction Club as a teenager, which meant I was periodically surrounded by teenage geeks when they had events at our house. (I still run into some of those geeks now and again and make them feel terribly old, since they can remember me before I hit puberty.)

She got involved with Theater Emory when she was in college and went on a path that ultimately led her to a degree at the Yale School of Drama and many years of work as a stage manager. When my parents professed concern that an advanced degree in theater wouldn't be very helpful in the 'real world', she pointed out to them that they were both academics and weren't exactly working in the 'real world' either. As it turned out, the organizational and people skills she learned as a stage manager served her just fine when she made a career shift into publishing. ("I'm stage managing a publishing company", as she put it.)

Currently, she makes puppets, dolls and costumes while raising her daughter Caroline and running the household she shares with her husband, Peter. (Yes, that would be the Peter who bought the Klingon puppet. Funny how love stories start.)

We celebrated in person on Labor Day, after DragonCon had finally wound down, with tenderloin steak and chocolate cake with buttercream frosting at our parents' house. Today is the day proper, and I'm sure she's celebrating it in style.


Today I took pleasure in an impromptu bed picnic.

Today I learned how to spell "Peloquin" (thank you, Google.)
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