Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Word Wednesday: "Noctivagant"

Today's word of the day is noctivagant, meaning "walking or wandering at night."  It comes from the Latin noctis, "night," plus vagans, "to wander."  This is a perfect word to know if you happen to like vampires...  The real kind.  Not the sparkly kind.

The Lonely Alchemist

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Poetry Tuesday: "In my eyes he matches the gods..." by Sappho

Sappho was a famous female poet of Ancient Greece.  Though her poems only exist in fragments today, they still carry immense beauty and emotional power.

In my eyes he matches the gods, that man who 
sits there facing you--any man whatever--
listening from close-by to the sweetness of your 
          voice as you talk, the

sweetness of your laughter: yes, that--I swear it-- 
sets the heart to shaking inside my breast, since 
once I look at you for a moment, I can't
          speak any longer,

but my tongue breaks down, and then all at once a
subtle fire races inside my skin, my
eyes can't see a thing and a whirring whistle 
          thrums at my hearing,

cold sweat covers me and a trembling takes 
ahold of me all over: I'm greener than the 
grass is and appear to myself to be little
          short of dying.

But all must be endured, since even a poor... (fragment ends here)
The Lonely Alchemist 

Monday, November 26, 2012

What's on your Christmas wishlist?

Now that Black Friday is over, it's time for those of us who did't spent the day after Thanksgiving attacking each other in Kohl's and Walmart to get our Christmas shopping done.  I hope you all partook in "Small Business Saturday" and supported your local small businesses (and online small businesses), as supporting small business is one of the best ways to stimulate our waning economy and support indie artisans.

And now of course is the fabulous Cyber Monday, the biggest day of online sales in the year, and there are plenty of places online, from Amazon to Etsy shoppes, that are offering specials on Cyber Monday you just can't miss!  So if you need a little inspiration for your Christmas lists this year, here is a little rundown of what the Lonely Alchemist is buying online this year (both for myself and for gifts):

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Word Wednesday: "Esculent"

The word of the day is esculent, meaning "something that is edible."  It comes from the Latin esculentus, from esca, or "food."  Plural is esculents.  It sounds a bit like escarole and escargot, which are both esculents.  Happy Thanksgiving and I hope all of your esculents are delicious!

The Lonely Alchemist

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Best Perfumes on Etsy

"Tarot" Steampunk perfume from BirdcageandLabyrinth
I love perfume! Who doesn't? Making it and wearing it are some of my favorite hobbies. And since commercial perfumes can be quite unhealthy, organic perfumes, natural perfumes, and botanical perfumes are quickly rising in popularity and making a huge niche market for themselves on Etsy and other hand-made goods websites. While there are over 200 shops on Etsy that sell perfume and scents, I am obligated to say that not all perfumes are created equal. Those that I am listing are either all-natural or mostly natural and have a less mass-produced feel than some of the shops. I have not tried perfumes from all of these shops, but from the sellers profiles I can tell that healthy personalized scents in small batches are their priority.  So here are just some of my favorite (and the best) perfume sellers on Etsy:

BirdcageandLabyrinth: Steampunk and Gothic perfumerie.  I can vouch for how awesome these perfumes are; I make them! New Zealand Award Winning & Handcrafted Solid Perfumes in various themes.  I've never tried these, but they look lovely.

Madame Scodioli makes unique and intriguing perfumes, soaps, etc...  I've never tried these, but they look lovely.

pixxxiepieandposie: Fantastical fragrance creations from the land of the fairies.
  I've never tried these, but they look very whimsical.

GreenManNaturals: Eco-friendly literary themed solid perfumes and perfume oils.  I can vouch for how awesome these perfumes are; I make them!

ForStrangeWomen: Natural Perfumery - Forest & Victorian-Inspired.  I've tried some of these and they are definitely an acquired taste.  Some people love them.  Some people don't.  I happen to love them.

ArabesqueAromas: A Botanical Apothecary
I've never tried these, but they look lovely.
Hand-made aromatherapy, fragrant, and metaphysical oil. 
I've never tried these, but they look lovely.

Maoli: Fun and Natural Perfumes made with Aloha. 
I've never tried these, but they look lovely.

The Lonely Alchemist 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Steampunk Game Review: "City of Steam"

It is one of the great travesties of the world that Steampunk themed games are few and far between (and it's hard to find the good ones).  So we at the Lonely Alchemist are committed to testing and reviewing every Steampunk-ish MMORPG and casual game we can find, just for you!

Today we review "City of Steam," the first mainly Steampunk MMORPG in the history of games!  This game mixes Steampunk, Fantasy, and Sci-fi aesthetics (mostly Steampunk), and take it from us, it does not disappoint!  We had the pleasure of playing the closed Beta last night, and the game exceeded our expectations for so many beautiful reasons.  So let's take a gander at our favorite aspects of the game so far:

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Poetry Tuesday: Salvinia Molesta, a poetry book review

The book Salvinia Molesta by Victoria Chang is a tangled trellis of image and emotion, weaving a story of fear, loss, and violence.  From this framework of intense and frightening subject matter, each poem hangs like an over-ripe fruit, eloquent words making the outside palatable, while the inside remains an upsettingly truthful vision of humanity’s disillusionment and depravity.  In her uniquely gentle and motherly tone, Victoria Chang reassures us while simultaneously forcing us to open our eyes to the gloom that surrounds us, as in the elegant yet desolate opening stanza of “Ars Poetica as Dislocated Theater:”