Wednesday, November 16, 2005

My Favorite Spider God

Yes, that would be Anansi, thanks to Neil Gaiman's delicious page-turner, Anansi Boys. Truth is, I have always hated spiders, which probably comes from the terrifying and oft repeated stories of how my older brother almost died from the bite of a black widow. "Oh, the boy's had swelled up like a pitcher's mit. Doctor said if he'd been brought in only hours later, he would have died. Yup, had to lance that boy's hand between each finger." Yeah, my brother was too young when it happened to have physical scars but I tell you, that darn story scarred my well enough.

Anyway, back to Anansi. Mr. Gaiman, my personal inspiration for writing, did such a fine job of telling this tale that I've had to reconsider my former loathing of the creepy, and sometimes deadly, little arachnids. Oh, I'll never enjoy them crawling along the ceiling over my bed, which they seem particularly fond of doing, and I'll never have a pet tarantula, but I do have a bit more respect for the wee things even if only because Mr. Nancy and his "sons" gave me many happy hours of reading. Thanks, Neil! I hope someday to thank you in person for all the many moments of my life spent in your magical worlds of words, AND for inspiring me to write my own.

For a great audio interview that spans the subjects of Anansi Boys, the film Mirror Mask, Gaiman Family life and Neil's penchant for mythology, go to Gods, Mirror Mask, Superball at Studio 360.

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