Saturday, December 4, 2010
Wishing you all a Happy Holiday Season and the Best New Year Possible!
I can't believe we have only what's left of this weekend and two more before Christmas. I was on the phone last night with a friend (someone who had a small part in Splendor in the Grass with Natalie way back when and who thought she was "everything") and after close to an hour of chatting about baseball (he also played professional ball and TV just did a special on him), I realized as we were hanging up that Hanukkah had already started and I quickly wished him a Happy Hanukkah. He wished me a Merry Christmas, which I realized may not be so merry if I don't get busy with all my holiday traditions.
Like Natalie Wood's home once did, my home fills with guests on Christmas Eve, too. I always know it's a minimum of a dozen people, but often the count goes as high as fifty. So, I've made fish for 50 for the past 20 years with my annual "Feast of the Seven Fishes" Christmas Eve. It's an Italian belief that if you eat all of the seven fishes, you have a better New Year. I always taste all seven, and thus far, I'm very grateful for "my years." My Italian aunts who weren't born in American usually made the traditional soup or casserole with a specific seven fishes called Chippino. I always include the mussels in the selections, and serve buffet style, as many do in modern days. There are several beliefs about this tradition over the centuries, some believe it represents the seven days of a week, the seven pilgrimage churches in Rome, the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, but most go with the seven sacraments. It's always a night we all enjoy and I always look forward to surprising everyone with at least one new fish dish each year. Then, around 10 PM we all open one present, the kids fall asleep and we break it up around midnight. I'm usually up until about 3 AM, arranging the presents under the tree, and preparing for Christmas morning breakfast for about 12 or more, then, Christmas is all about the kids and a family dinner.
The holiday season is always a time I get sentimental, and I do "say hello to friends I know and everyone I meet" and I hope for a better new year. I get to share this holiday again with friends and family and there is nothing I am more grateful for than that. After a recent health scare that turned out fine, I am especially grateful this year.
This is my blog. Blogs are personal journals we can choose to make public or restrict. I have boxes in my huge attic filled with personal journal notebooks I've written since I learned to put a sentence together. I don't claim to be any kind of writer I'm not. I do my best, as any writer does. I'm sure my little post here will be considered "smoke and mirrors" by some and that some will accuse me of "diverting" because I'm talking about my buffet instead of Natalie's. This blog is titled Marti Rulli. Its purpose is to discuss the information in my published book. Sometimes, I may go a little off topic, as I am a person, too. I am free to do and say what I want, just as all of you are. It's difficult for me to sometimes deal with all of the personality types interested in this tragic tale. All of our instincts are based on our own experiences. I value every individual's input, even though I'm accused of not being able to take the heat, but I basically go with what I've VERIFIED. Believe me, I can take the heat. I'm never out of the kitchen. I'm cooking fish for fifty, not for one. Hope that metaphor is okay, too.
As Ricky Nelson wrote in his lyrics in Garden Party, after being literally attacked for just showing up to sing, I will heed his words: "You can't please every one, so you've got to please yourself." I do my best.
Right now I've got some technical problems going on with listings of GNGS at websites. Some aren't up and running yet, (NOOK) some are mixing instructions on how to present taglines and where to place reviews, and some are requesting verified purchases for Kindle to list a review in that section, and some postings have been lost in the mix. We're trying to straighten out some technical details, we're trying to get the paperback cover up before an official release, I've been receiving emails from readers whose reviews were rejected, so I'm trying to see if I can create a review page with Blogger. I've got a publicist waiting for an okay to hit the streets, so to speak. I've got a producer wanting a detailed outline for a possible script. And I was given a graph from Amazon that shows exactly how well GNGS did out of 8 MILLION BOOKS!! (Not bad at all!!) I'm trying to copy the graph to post here. GNGS did reach as high as #2 in True Crime and as high as #2 in Entertainment Biographies. If you place a review at Amazon, please make sure it is under the VERIFIED sales of the version you purchased with your OWN account, or you may encounter a problem. Amazon is experiencing problems with book clubs ordering under one account, yet members writing their reviews under their own accounts, and Amazon will be checking for unverified purchases. If it isn't one thing, it's another! I'm trying not to stress. One goal at a time. Yes, there is a play about Natalie Wood coming next year, and I'll be sure to be very careful with details when I announce it. And, no, I do not hold anything against anyone who holds to their opinions of the four people who were aboard the Splendour the Thanksgiving weekend of November 1981. Natalie's case remains a travesty of justice.
You can say anything you want here about how you feel as long as you post your sentiments civilly. All I can honestly tell you is that I strived for complete truth and honesty when I wrote GNGS. In all honesty, if you knew Dennis Davern, you'd understand every word I say about him, and you would be quite surprised by him. Dennis has his own voice, but he does not have a blog. I do. I appreciate all of you who are here. I try to be an accurate voice for Natalie, and a true voice for Dennis. When Dennis tells me to shut up, I will, but I won't retreat for anyone else because there's still a lot of work to accomplish for Natalie. Also, I've started a new book. So, on that note, I'll be busy in the kitchen and at the keyboard for a while, and I wish I could send you all a plate of my traditional Christmas cookies "like Grandma used to make." The secret, my grandmother told me is CREAM CHEESE in place of butter (but I use both). I wish I could post parts of the new manuscript now, but that will have to wait. I won't take another 20 years. I've got the "meat" this time.
At this "most wonderful time of the year" I wish you ALL the warmest of everything the season has to offer. Bless us, Everyone. Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, and Special Holidays to ALL of you. May your New Year be as merry and bright as possible. Sincerely, Marti Rulli