Archive for July, 2008

TaDah!! Article Finished!

Posted in Uncategorized on July 20, 2008 by xxxicana

I finished the Ancient Maya Music article yesterday — and popped open a bottle of Martini & Rossi Asti to celebrate — yummmmmy! Today is packing day for Mexico – I always pack too much, and will probably do so again. I can’t wait to get to el D.F., it’s been about 17 years since I’ve been back. . . way too long. Here’s a portrait of Frida — titled Frida and the Brine Shrimp

Interview today with the Omaha World Herald

Posted in Musings with tags , , , on July 16, 2008 by xxxicana

I was interviewed today by the Omaha World Herald regarding the meaning of suspension rituals. I was informed that a piercing studio in the Omaha area is holding monthly suspension shows (free to watch, $100.00 to participate). My colleague and friend Dr. Mary Willis recommended me as an expert . . . since I AM the resident piercing authority! I’ll post the article once it is published. Check back next week. This came out of the blue today, which is funny since my last post was about septum piercing! Coincidence? You be the judge!

After providing some anthropological background to Native American suspension practices, I covered underground BDSM suspension practices that have been around for some time in large urban areas such as L.A. Some of you may remember the suspension scene from the Richard Harris movie “A Man Called Horse.” Here’s a photo snagged off the net of a modern version of the practice.

“They pierce the cartilage of the nose within . . .”

Posted in Musings on July 16, 2008 by xxxicana

And so Diego de Landa reported of Maya women of the Yucatan in the mid 16th century. It was also the custom for men and women to tattoo their bodies, pierce their ears, and file their teeth.

In ancient times, royal women performed auto-sacrifice by drawing a thorn embedded cord through their tongues! I’ll pass on that one!

Septum piercing is also practiced by some Kuna women (Panama and Colombia). In the past, girls had their noses pierced in infancy, today, many mothers eschew the practice to allow girls choice in the matter. Kuna women are also recognized for their fine reverse applique work known as “molas.”

Under a deadline

Posted in Uncategorized on July 15, 2008 by xxxicana

If you are checking up on me . . . I am currently under the gun to finish an article on Ancient Maya music. Yikes, the deadline is tomorrow!! Fortunately, I work well under pressure. The article is for Istmo (check my links) and should be out in a couple of months. An interesting aspect of this article is musing (yes, pun intended) about soundscapes of the distant past. We cannot know what music was like 1200 years ago or more — but fortunately, we can at least imagine the pomp and spectacle of Maya performances. Here’s a picture to help in visualization: