Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Web Surfin'

In case you missed this bit of trivia, I based Daughter of Liberty on the 1982 TV movie The Scarlet Pimpernel starring Anthony Andrews and Jane Seymour. Odd’s fish, m’dear, what a romp it was, and though it’s a bit dated now, I still think it’s one of the best historical movies that’s come down the pike. So when I was doing a bit of Web surfing Tuesday and ran across the Web site Blakeney Manor, I was thrilled. To think that someone else was so obsessed with the inimitable Sir Percy and lovely Marguerite that they devoted an entire Web site and obviously hours and hours of effort and research to creating this site is mind boggling! Why didn’t I think of it first????

Go to Blakeney Manor to check out the original series by Baroness Orczy and the various movies as well as research links galore. There’s even a gift shop, though it’s pretty rudimentary. I hope they add to it soon. The thought of owning an object that sports “Sink me” or “Odd’s fish” or even “Noblesse Oblige” is just too delicious! And at the bottom of the home page you’ll find a link to a test to determine which Scarlet Pimpernel character you are, which includes code to embed it on your site or blog. You’ll also find it here down below on the sidebar. Naturally, I turned out to be Sir Percy himself! Here are the descriptions given.

On the picture of Sir Percy: You are brave, heroic, and very clever. Your enemies hate you. Everyone else adores you. You're a snappy dresser, and like every true Englishman, you just hate mushy sentimentality.

Below: You are a brave, heroic, and very clever Englishman with a philanthropic streak. You are the leader of fashion in London, live in a very big house, have a very beautiful wife, and a lot of lolly. When you're not playing the social fop, you enjoy organizing and carrying out dash-cunning rescues of poor little Frenchies from the scummy hands of the evil Revolutionary Government. Go you!

I must say that’s me—well, almost! No idea what it means that I turned out to be a man—undoubtedly there’s some Freudian implication there somewhere—but as long as you’re rich and an adventurer, does it really matter what sex you are? Somebody please send me the cash. Large bills, thank you! I’ll get started freeing those oppressed Frenchies right way!

I really cracked up when my middle daughter turned out to be Marguerite. Believe me, if you knew her, you’d know that was a foregone conclusion!

As if that wasn’t bad enough, my buddy Lori Benton started another nasty addiction by introducing me to a site called Morph Thing. You can use the images they provide or upload your own and morph 2 or more to create a blend. Lori has quickly become an expert at this, while I’m a little more morphing challenged. We’ve both been trying to come up with the main characters from our books, but she’s doing a lot better job than I am.

Here’s her version of Elizabeth Howard, which turned out amazingly close to the image I have of her in my head. She’s less glam, of course—no modern make-up was available in the 1770s, after all—but this is pretty much what Elizabeth looks like to me.

Her “parents” are:

Saira Mohan
Maria Menounos
Evangeline Lilly
Anne Hathaway
Catherine Zeta Jones
Ashley Greene

I’m also obviously culturally challenged because Anne Hathaway and Catherine Zeta-Jones are the only names I recognize! Haven’t a clue who the others are.

Lori almost has her hero, Ian, down pat, but I when I tried to create Jonathan Carleton I didn’t have much success. I know he contains some features from Philip Winchester and Simon Baker—like those fabulous blue eyes—but a morph of them ends up too much like one or the other. Lori tried adding several others to the mix, but we haven’t gotten there yet. We just need the right parents. If we ever succeed in creating him, I’ll definitely post the pic here so you can see what I see when I think of Jonathan!