Wednesday, April 1, 2009

MEME.. Influences and Tripping the Light Fantastic with Mary Jane and Sniffles

CatVibe thanks for tagging me for the Meme of 25 Influential things in my life!
I confess. I have been tripping the light fantastic on life's highway. I am just bee-bopping along watching rainbows and checking out new spring candle scents without a great deal of direction and purpose. Truthfully, if left to my own devices, I might mostly live my life this way. Fortunately or not I have influences directing me toward a more active involved lifestyle!

This life dance is fun and a tad addicting and includes things like enjoying buttercups and fresh winds and wishing to be at the ocean. I am doing those small celebrations of Spring that may have taken the place in our lives through the Pagan rituals of the distant past. My kind of dance right now for today..

I say all that to excuse the fact that I am a tad behind of responding to fun requests from favorite bloggers. If I have visited you a bit less, forgive me and put it off to spring fever. Ah well......I am stepping up to the plate this evening. You can always count on me to appear..although at times it will be with a slow hopefully measured waltz rather than an East Coast Swing!

Catherine at Witnessing a World of People and Places has given me this great invite by tagging me for my life influences. So hear goes Catherine. I think that is a great idea!

To be truthful. I am a compulsive reader. I fear I may always have been. I cannot remember a time when I was not. So some of my influences were happenstance because they appeared in front of me and I could not resist the read.

I am one of those people you hear about who must read the backs of cereal boxes, items left on the table and pages of open books. As an adult now, most of the time I am able to be more discrete about this.

I have learned NOT to read over peoples shoulders and to not read while they are talking or sharing scenery with me on day trips.This learning took years of being surprised at family and friends exasperation with me for not taking time to smell the roses . My family learned early on that if there was something they did not want me to to not leave it in my sight.

I have always wanted to be a fairy child sprinkling magic fairy dust with a tinker bell type wand.. This longing has survived through adulthood. One of the primary influences for this was certainly my childhood training where only the good survived by the hardest. A tad bit of fairy dust could definitely come in handy.

Another part of the influence was comic books. My mother briefly worked at a comic book factory where she was able to bring home free comic books. You can guess the outcome with her eldest girl child being a READER.

It did not occur to my rather naive mom that comic books would need a censor so I got an overly wide range of reading material for a second grader. From these opportunities I developed a deep love for science fiction and fantasy and superhero comics that is still with me today.

I definitely got over the interest in horror comic books. Some of the ones I read were pretty horrific. My exposure to those books was at a young age prior to comic book content regulation. I try not to think of those too often. Mom read an article of outrage printed in our local paper about the need for comic book content revision for young children. Much of the variety of my comic book collection disappeared shortly after she read that article. Her theory was definitely better late than never.

It was during this period that I first encountered Mary Jane and Sniffles. Here is a site summary of this much loved and whimsical series. I still love them!

You can visit this site here! Here is info from the site that tells the tale well!

In 1941, when Dell Comics licensed the Warner Brothers cartoon characters, they let a tiny and adorable mouse named Sniffles sneak into the back pages of the first issue. Of course, mice were nothing new to the world of comics and animation, even then. So Sniffles' success hinged on his partnership with a small blonde girl named Mary Jane.

Mary Jane, like many other characters before and since her, possessed the ability to shrink to a fraction of her normal size, in order frolick with Sniffles in a kingdom of living toys.

Craig Chase, the creator of the stories, named the flaxen haired pixie after his wife, Mary Jane. But the girl's method's for shrinking and the quaint little rhymes preceding each resizing effort were purely part of his whimsical imagination.

When the series debuted, Mary Jane sprinkled herself in magic dust and chanted, "Magic sand, magic sand, make me small at my command!" At times, she'd vary her pleas to the powder: "Oh, magic sand upon me fall, and make me very, very small!"

But after eight years or so in print, the magic sand was no longer necessary, and Mary Jane murmured, "First I shut my eyes real tight, then I wish with all my might! Magic words of poof, poof, piffles, make me just as small as Sniffles." And with a cross of her fingers, she'd become miniscule.

While this Dell Comics duo did delve into the TV world during the 1940s, their small screen series wasn't quite as successful as their lengthy print run. They continued to appear between the pages of Dell Comics and Four Color Comics until 1961. The pair occasionally cropped up after that, in the end pages of a Bugs Bunny comic title during the '70s.

Here is my personal list of influences ....including my possible favorite of Mary Jane and Sniffles.
1) Anais Nin--anything she has written including her diaries.
2) Marion Zimmerman Bradley-- love anything she has written but especially the Mists of Avalon
3) Mary Jane and Sniffles, Dell Marvel DC and , Superhero comics in general..
4) Rumi , Rilke
5) Khalil Gibran
6) Kitaro--I can be on cloud nine in a heartbeat with his Morning Prayer.
7) The King James Bible
8) Dance...always.... and nearly any kind.
9) ) Elias DeMohan-Sound ,Color and Vibration System of Personal and Spiritual Growth
10) Carl Jung
11) The Poems of Dylan Thomas and Seamus Heaney And the writings of Ray Bradbury
(Not in the same category I know but equally well loved)
12) Mary Stewart (The Arthurian series)
13) Children of the Gods
14) Clarissa Pinkola Estes (Running with Wolves)
15) You already know what to do
16) C. S. Lewis
18) William Shakespeare
19) John Bradshaw....On: The Family and numerous other recovery and discovery authors popular in the 1990's
20) Deuter-Visionary Music for Healing and Well Being
21) Desiderata
22) D.H. Lawrence
23) Mrs Foster... My neighbor--An Africian American Woman confined to her bed for years of her adult life and my friend when I was a sixth grader
24) Historical Novels by Frank Yerby that I discovered (because of their informative sexual content) in the sixth grade
25) Dan Millman--The Way of the Peaceful Warrior and others.
26) The Beautiful and Wonderful Yellow Brick Road of the Internet Community. What a gift you are!

I could go on forever....This is enough for today. Thanks for listening! Here are folks I am tagging for their contribution.....The 25 influences they will share. I would like to tag these folks . Check these special bloggers out!

Allison at Keep Calm and Carry On
CathM at Catherine Mark-Besant
Christopher at View from the Northern Wall
DB at Vagabond Journeys
Diane at Coexist
George from LostNights Scribblings
Jesse at The Main Art Blog @ 1968
June Saville at 70 Plus and Still Kickin
Lorenzo at Crowned with Laurels
Shadow from 1 door from Heaven

Courtesy of Ghost Dansing


Anonymous said...

Awesome list Linda! I am a HUGE fan of Dan Milman as well. And Anais Nin. And Carl Jung. And on and on! Love finding fellow readers. Good post - enjoy Spring now that it is finally here.

Linda S. Socha said...

Thanks Audrey!
I am definitely ready!

Anonymous said...


Number @ 21... definitely hot/cold


A. said...

I really enjoy your list! You've given me a project - put together my own. I'm another compulsive much so that books are banned at bedtime as I'd stay up all night to finish it.


CathM said...

Powerful list... very telling of where your insight and wisdom comes from (or at least what influences it). Love it!

June Saville said...

I remember in fifth class primary school here in Oz that my teacher suggested to us all that we should read everything we come across - signs, advertisements as well as books and magazines. I loved reading and did everything he said. It was the beginning of a life long obsession ...

Natalie said...

Wonderful list, Linda.
The yellow brick road is not as pretty, without a flower like you on it.xx♥

Shadow said...

your influences are inspirational! no, really they are!!!

i consider myself tagged and will get to it soon...

Shadow said...

oh yes, and you have my permission...

Catvibe said...

I LOVE it! We have so many similar folks on our lists! I loved what you wrote here:

I have always wanted to be a fairy child sprinkling magic fairy dust with a tinker bell type wand..
I know exactly what you mean. That must be why INFP's become witch doctors. :-)

Thank you for taking up my tag and doing it so interestingly, that's why I tagged you, I knew you would!

Anonymous said...

Great list! - lots of cross-over on what would be my list too, Linda.

Thanks for your comment and thoughtful words on Free Spirit today, also :)

~Sia McKye~ said...

I confess, I always enjoyed Frank Yerby's books. and they were in my school library, lolol! I think I discovered them about the same ae as you.

Since we only had one car when I was growing up, and dad took it to work, I was the one that brought home books for mom to read. Our school library had books to span all ages--it was part of the county library system-- and I was always bringing books home for her and then trying to read some of them myself. I would also look for specific books for mom. I know I raised more than one eyebrow asking for a particular author or book. :-)

As for comic books, loved the super heroes, and the Archie comics. I used to draw all those cool muscled bodies dn then did some of my own stories using the comic book style. We entertained each other for hours with stuff like that or oral stories we made up.

I love Kitaro's music. My favorite is the Silk Road with the London Symphony.

Have a great week.


What a list, I read only occasionlly but the winter is the time I do read more. Great blog.


becomingkate said...

I'm a complulsive reader too. Always carry a book no matter where I'm going, and that helps to keep my mind occupied while I'm waiting.
Have a good day!

Jess Mistress of Mischief said...

Sing... Dance... LOVE!!!!


I love reading, I love dancing like a kid!

My mom had to supply me with books that she was reading cause I went through kids books too fast... so I too had a much more adult reading content much younger (old souls we are :Op) :) In very young characters :)

DB said...

Fascinating list. I acknowledge being tagged for my 25, 50, 95, 175 influences. No, I'll keep it to 25, I promise.


alex said...

Great post, Linda. Thank you for introducing me to Mary Jane. I'm gonna go read the back of a cereal box now. Inspirational, you.

Diane Vogel Ferri said...

Thanks Linda, this seems worthwhile to ponder, but I don't know when I might get to it!! I'm having enough trouble getting to a blog post lately. I do like your list - especially starting off with Anais Nin - me too.

Woman in a Window said...

Ah, Dylan Thomas' Fern Hill, my favorite.

Great list! Glad you took a moment from all the romping and stringing of daisy chains to stop by. Enjoy.

findingmywingsinlife said...

Interesting post Linda, I enjoyed reading it.

Ghost Dansing said...

"I have always wanted to be a fairy child sprinkling magic fairy dust with a tinker bell type wand."

you too?

Cynthia said...

Great list, Linda! I enjoy many of those listed...both musically and spiritually. Wonderful that you became friends with your neighbor who was bedridden. It must have taught your heart to welcome people! <3

Middle Ditch said...

Hi Linda, I got finally around to reading your post. When I put myself down as a follower the phone rang, hubby came home, needed to cook and I just did not getting around reading your post. Then spring sprang and loads needed doing inside as well as outside the house, hence this late reply.

But here I finally am and I must say it made interesting reading even though none of the cartoon characters are familiar to me, not being American or even English.

Thank you for visiting my humble blog. It is always fantastic to see a new radio enthusiast. We are having a recording session tomorrow and we should have posted another episode today but we decided to leave it for a week as we are a little behind in editing episodes. Thanks again for visiting and leaving such a lovely comment.

Selchie said...

ah yes - for some fairy dust...) I read the shampoos in the bathroom too if I run out of reading so I know what you mean!

Carl Jung and C.S Lewis also among my favourites. Thank you for the birthday wishes. I'm very glad to have met you.))

Sunny days,


Linda S. Socha said...

My neighbor taught me about love, history, drama :>) relationships and she mea ME feel special. She was a light in the darkness.
What a gift she was

Linda S. Socha said...

Love the Tinker Bell Video!
An over simplistic approach I know

Linda S. Socha said...

Thanks kte!... Good to see you stop by. I enjoy following your blog

Linda S. Socha said...

Loved the Video. Thank you for your comment and for stopping by

Oops! Desperate Blogger~ said...

Hi Linda,
Thank you for the comment on my blog. The DVD is called The World of Doll Artists and spotlights some of the best dollmakers around. It's just 35 minutes, but fun and inspiring. I got it on
Love your list btw!

mystic rose said...

I see a couple of names I love here, and many that I havent yet read. So thanks! I am goin to try a few, Im sure I will find some I really like.

Chrisy said...

So lovely to read of somebody who's 'tripping the light fantastic on life's highway'...I'm planning/needing to do a bit more of this (thank you...your spirit is infectious and much appreciated) also a compulsive reader and your list...well have devoured most of the same...and will investigate the rest!

Tashai said...

All I can say is WOW what a post.

Brosreview said...

Linda, I've tagged you for a nice meme. Visit my spot to participate. Cheers!!!

Anonymous said...

Thanking, you *dance* You are another 'Free Spirit' yes?

Wow very impressive list.Half I know well and half not; so will have to research such.Not enough hours in the day!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Really interesting list, Linda!

I notice you say you like superheroes - does that include Batman and co? I love the films, and Alex Ross's art.

I keep meaning to read Running with Wolves, it crops up quite a lot in conversations and blogs.

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Great influences. I can see them influencing you. You are such a special person! K

Word Verification - alamb

Cherie/ Butterfly Dreamer said...

Reading of the great passions in life.

laughingwolf said...

ever connect 'mary jane' with maryjane, aka marijuana, hence her fantastical adventures?:O lol

Linda S. Socha said...

Wolf...Yep....but not until much later when having a cognitive A Ha moment.. Ah so many realities
As in CS Lewis?

The Sea Wind said...

Dear Linda,

I am listening to Kitaro's Morning Prayer and thinking about you at the moment. I was drawn into his music during my highschool years. How wonderful that we share quite a few things in common. Thanks for a very inspiring blog entry! Your passion of reading and sharing with others are much appreciated.


Linda S. Socha said...

The Sea Wind
WONDERFUL....I think we are soul sisters! Where are you? What is happening in your life and travels. Thank you for the lovely comment

Harlequin said...

such a nice tribute to the rites of spring and to the dance with words you seem to have been doing for a long long time....
hope your meanderings are fun and fruitful in the days ahead...
I liked your preference list and your quite insightful comments on comic books... how wonderful that there was( and will be ) an " underground" for anyone who likes comics...

The Sea Wind said...

Hi Linda,

I'm packing again leaving for Vienna, Austria for Easter's weekend. Life has been speedy and somewhat blurry. I will be in touch. In the mean time, please take very good care dear friend.


laughingwolf said...

precisely, linda :D

LORENZO said...

Free comic books! Your influences are wide and varied. Being an avid reader adds so much to a person's character. I wish the young people of today would read more. They'd be better off and better persons for it! All the best. Say hello to Sniffles for me...LL

BJ Roan said...

Nice author choices! Loved reading the entire piece, especially the "backs of cereal boxes" etc. Me too! Guess all that reading is what sent me down the writing road.

Karen said...

Linda, I love your list, and I can't believe how many we have in common! I thought I was the only little sixth grader to read Frank Yerby! I can remember my mother telling me I wouldn't understand him. I probably didn't, but that didn't stop me from trying! From your love of Mary Stuart's Arthurian series to Kahlil Gibran, we love so many of the same authors. I still love Sniffles the Mouse, too. (I can still talk like him, can you talk like him? do you want to talk like him? LOL)

This has been like a walk down Memory Lane with a new friend!

Steve Emery said...

Great list!!! I share a number of these - C S Lewis, The King James Bible (especially some of the Psalms), Ray Bradbury...

Linda S. Socha said...

Someone who loved Sniffles AND Frank Yerby.....I am enthralled to have a kindred spirit .....Thanks for the lovely comment