Saturday, November 6, 2010


I don't believe in "Luck" -- I believe in work.

But I collected Fortune Cookie fortunes --
only the good ones.

When JC got a super good luck fortune,
I took it and pasted it on my string.

The fortunes are taped to a red string,
that's hanging on the door to my office.

Open the door, enter my office, and look up.

High up on the window, there's a poster from "People in Show Biz Make Long Goodbyes," a play written by me as H. Jean Schaeffer. (I've used that name as a pseudonym.) I'm proud of the fact that my play was produced in NYC at Off-Broadway's Orpheum Theater.

Look down, and you'll see on the shelf above my computer,
a beautiful belly-dancing doll.

Her head, her bosoms, her hips all wiggle. She does a Hootchy Kootchy dance if you blow on her.

GH, a sailor, a dear pal of JC's, who propositioned me, bought my belly dancing doll for me, along with a 4 oz. flagon of $90-an-ounce Joy perfume. It's on the shelf behind her -- never opened -- it seems disloyal to use it, but it's accruing value. The price for Joy perfume is now $400 an ounce.

On the shelf above my monitor, there's a hand-painted cup. I brought it in Spoleto, Italy, where I danced my very best despite the fact that Baryshnikov and Carla Fracci, the stars on the program, were waiting to go on, watching me in the wings.

On the shelf above that -- three tall wooden flowers. My son JD bought them for me for good luck when I left Malibu, moaning about missing the flowers.

Under my calendar, a demonic wooden Chinese Lord is staring angrily at the dancing doll. He's a gift from my stage crew in Hong Kong, who taught me to say "Go Cue! Take a break! Thank you," in Chinese.

I don't pay much attention to any of my good luck trinkets. I never had a rabbit's foot or knocked on wood.

But I always wear a purple T-shirt, no matter what the weather -- on the first day of a new project. And though I haven't added any new fortune cookie fortunes to my string, I've made a fortune cookie bracelet.
The bracelet hangs
on my clock.
Click and enlarge.
Note my purple sleeve!
You can probably decipher
some of my most favorite
good luck words.


fran Leonardis said...

Oh boy do I have good luck stuff to share. Shall I tell you about the family rituals? Like throwing a cow bell down the front stairs on New Years Eve and having the youngest male in the house go and get it? Or maybe that the first person to enter the house on New Years day has to be a dark haired man. Soooo many, that they are all hard to remember.
As an entertainer, I have rituals that just happened. Stuff that I do before a show. I have lucky underwear. A pair of boy shorts that I wear every time I am on. Yes, I wash them after every show. lol I also have my "Theater Jesus" pinned to the inside of my bra. Just a little divine help to keep me going. Lets see, I always take the same route to the stage before my cue. I touch the same things on the way. Whether they are people or things, I must touch them.
Of course these things change from show to show. (except for the lucky shorts and the theater Jesus). But these are just little things that make me feel more comfortable before a show.

Lynne said...

I do knock on wood---my head. And of course I say "break a leg." And I'll go out of my way to walk under a ladder and pet a black cat---and I have a black cat, my handsome Louie. The only thing I'm really skittish about is a hat on the bed, I know that's bad luck in the theatre.

Anonymous said...

Out of respect and affection for the theater I always call it the 'scottish play" and tell people to 'break a leg'. Agree Em, hard work, talent, good fortune, great family, exceptional friends are things I've always believed were the bases of why I consider myself a fortunate person.
It's great fun to share ones good fortune, with a smile, a hug, encouragement and being there on the rainy day not just the ones with sunshine. 'Good luck' tailisman? Maybe, but I won't count on it. Em, good subject, xxxxoooo H.

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