The Patron Saint of Tart, Part 1

I worked late tonight, and can never get to sleep at a normal time when that happens. Working in a casino can be lots of fun, but coming down after eight hours slinging cards is not always the easiest thing possible. So instead of tossing and turning, I think I'll just introduce you all to Ana. Without whom, Tart would not exist.

And that's not hyperbole. It absolutely would not have ever come to my, or Ludo's minds to create it if Ana hadn't performed her special brand of alchemy.

I always love telling stories about Ana because I can start them with the line, "I met her on my honeymoon." Let me tell you, if you ever need to get a group of people's attention, just say that. It's like dangling honey in front of Pooh Bear, you've got yourself an attentive audience.

But it's true, I did meet Ana on my honeymoon. Of course, so did my wife, so it isn't as salacious as it sounds.

My wife Janet and I are not "Tropics People." God bless all of you who are, it just wouldn't have been our thing. Instead of basking in the sun of Acapulco, we chose to brave the early April mist of London instead. Between the two of us, our house is littered with albums by The Clash, novels by Douglas Adams, Monty Python memorabilia, The comics of Alan Moore,  and most especially ALMOST EVERYTHING Neil Gaiman has ever written.

And it just so happened that the week we were going to be in London, Neil Gaiman was going to be there as well. When a signing at Forbidden Planet was arranged, I asked Janet if we could go.

So we planned our week as well as we could. We wanted to see a show on The West End (We saw two actually: "Spamalot" and "Guys and Dolls" starring Don Johnson - my wife's first true love). Walk Hyde Park. See the British Museum, etc. But all of these things had to be planned around the signing. Janet was game.

So the day of the signing we got there early (Do not wander up to a Neil Gaiman signing five minutes before it starts, or you'll be there until the next morning). It was cold and drizzly and dreary, and nobody was in line yet, so we crossed the street and got lunch. Through the window we saw one person come and sit down waiting for the signing. When two girls joined her, we decided it was time to brave the cold with the rest of the diehards.

When we got in line, everyone sort of introduced themselves. We talked about our favorite Gaiman stories, what we'd brought to have signed (I'd stuffed my suitcase with about 6 books, including Neil's first published book about Duran Duran - My favorite author, one of Janet's favorite bands - is that precious or what : )

Then the conversation turned to what people did, or wanted to do. Two of the girls in line were Ana, and Laurence. Ana was a costume designer and Laurence was (is) an astonishingly talented artist. Ana is an artist  (and writer and poet) as well, but I think she is just one of those people who pushes those she believes in to create. And I believe this because of her work in bringing Tart into existence.

Which will be a story for another day. As this has already gotten very long and my Tylenol PM is starting to kick in. Good for my sleep, bad for blugggggggging. I mean blogging.  


  1. thanks, this is very interesting. keep it up.

  2. For anyone interested, I asked the artist mentioned in this blog: Laurence Peguy to send me the link to her Harry Potter Artwork which first enthralled me. She kindly sent me two links to her artwork:




    Full disclosure - Laurence has illustrated an Epic Poem of mine titled, "The Bargain I Made for her Heart." So I'm not just a fan of her work, I'm also a client.