All posts for the month September, 2013

Seeking a Psychic to Interview for Magazine

Published September 29, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_2425Outside of A&E Network Psychic Tia’s place. (Photo by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta).

Last week a friend of mine wanted to check out A&E Network Psychic Tia’s place, so went over and checked the place out. That day Psychic Tia was booked until 2014 though! She just walked into a session as we got there, otherwise it would have been nice to talk with her.

Psychics are a lot of fun. While I am psychic myself, sometimes I like to treat myself to a reading.

About a year ago, I went to a male psychic who told me that I was going to write a book. At the time, it was the furthest thing from my mind. I was like, “No, I’m happy as a journalist. I have no interest in writing a book.”

Well, one thing led to another, where someone planted a seed in my head, “I’d love to read a book like that!” Next thing you know, I’m finished writing the book and gathering endorsements.

That same psychic also told me things I never imagined happening — all positive stuff, that came true.  And sometimes I tell people positive stuff that comes true too.

All that said, it was a blessing to sign a writing contract a few days ago with upcoming paranormal magazine. I pitched the idea of interviewing a psychic to my editor and the idea was accepted, so now I am seeking someone to interview.

If interested, please read:

SEEKING PSYCHIC FOR INTERVIEW. I’m a great fan of professional psychics and therefore jumped at the opportunity to interview a psychic, male or female, from anywhere in the United States, for a national magazine.

If you are interested in being interviewed, via telephone (sorry no email interviews!), please contact me at:

Please send a bio and link to your website!

Paterson Artist Alfonso Dunn’s Exhibit

Published September 24, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_2412Paterson artist, Alfonso Dunn

Last week I had the opportunity to cover Alfonso Dunn’s art show for Paterson Press.

You can read the article here:

I had such a great time and was really impressed with a young girl there named Ariele who asked the artist some very interesting questions. It’s so refreshing when young people — or people in general — ask questions.

SAM_2424Me, Alfonso Dunn and Ariele Adrianzen

Billy in the Sky

Published September 20, 2013 by Maryanne

Billy in the Sky“Billy in the Sky” (Art collaboration between my husband and his friend Patrick, photos by me)

Dennis and I are still very heart-broken over the loss of our Billy Cat, who we had to put to sleep at age 19, on September 3.

The other night we received Billy’s ashes and paw print from our vet. It was done so beautifully, the little box has a gold name plate and the paw print has a little heart on it.

I’m still having a hard time getting through the day. My heart is pained and the loss is so great. I have to be honest and say that it’s sad that some people just don’t get it, which makes the loss even more painful and harder to heal.

I am so grateful for all the animal lover friends and family I have that do get it. Those who have helped in the most heartfelt ways. I will never forget the kindness.

In honor of Billy, I had his picture put on new address labels I had printed and I wrote a dedication to him in my upcoming October newsletter.

I still miss him terribly. Our home still feels empty without his presence.

We will always love you, Billy.

Sex Sells But My Audience Will Expand If the Age Bracket Does!

Published September 19, 2013 by Maryanne


My Face Book status today: “People who have great sex lives don’t need to hear about other people’s sex lives. That said, I’m proud to say my upcoming book will have a mere PG-rating. Your kids can read it and so can your grandmother — and it will still be a page-turner. Thank you very much.”

I’ve written for several sex publications in my younger days and I was damn good at it. But honestly, you get to a point where you just have to move on in life writing about other things. It’s like, okay, I did that, where is the challenge now?

A fellow writer friend who also wrote for sex publications agreed on how draining it could be. Then once you are known for writing about sex it seems that’s all people want to talk about with you.

That said, I may be the first person to ever write a rock ‘n’ roll book without sharing my sex life. It’s a thrill being able to write so intensely while keeping it classy. My mother will be proud!

About a year ago, inspired by the television show, “Swingtown,” I thought it would be fun to create a similar scenario taking place in the 1980s instead of the 1970s. I started writing a book. But, I’m really struggling  because deep down I feel I am going backwards in my career, creating scenes and ideas that I’ve mastered writing about in the 1990s. Now a year into writing this book, I’m not sure I want to go there and finish it.

I shared with my husband, “I just want to write a poignant book about a cat — now that would be challenging!”

He smiled and gave me a hug. He was proud of me.

When I finally do publish my first book, whether it’s the autobiography I’m working on, or a fictitious side project, I want everyone I know to be able to purchase my first book — from my 12-year-old nephew to my 91-year-old father-in-law. Maybe they wouldn’t be interested in the book, but just in case they are, I don’t ever want to discourage someone from buying my book because of inappropriate material.

Recently Shirley Jones published a controversial tell all and so many people said they didn’t need to hear that — and I am with them! Don’t get me wrong, there’s definitely a place for sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll — but it doesn’t have to be EVERY PLACE! (In other words, shoved in your face!)

I do have a possible future project coming up that if it pulls through it will have sex and rock ‘n’ roll to appeal to the masses. It will be the experience of someone else, not my experience, written more from a journalistic perspective.

However, when it comes to writing my memoirs, there’s something to be said about going with your heart and not going with what is currently trending. Or being brainwashed into thinking that my book will sell if — and only if — it has sex.

No, I think I’m better than that.

Sakura, my love

Published September 19, 2013 by Maryanne

A beautiful post by Paula, a perfect read for animal lovers!



sakura 004

sakura 005

sakura 006

I did a post about Sakura months ago and have been asked to post a photo of her many times since then.

So without further ado…. Here is the great love of my life!

Sakura is 10 in human years and is a very small cat. Although she’s a moggy cat she thinks she’s a pedigree. Lol

Her name means cherry blossom in Japanese. Her nicknames are Kura and Princess. No matter what time of the day or night I come home, 9 out of 10 times she’s half asleep waiting at the front door to greet me.

When I sleep she cuddles right into me like a teddy bear. Because I have insomnia and sleep apnea she can tell when my breathing changes and she nudges me to wake up. I’ve always found this sixth sense in animals incredible. If she feels I’ve neglected her, she goes to her…

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Over the Rainbow

Published September 17, 2013 by Maryanne

over the rainbowSomewhere Over the Rainbow

An excerpt from my upcoming book, “On the Guest List”

Working in Montclair I soon discovered a unique health food store called Over the Rainbow – not to be confused with the nursery school of the same name.

Turned out, the owner, Bob Farina, was an old acquaintance, the Plasmatics fan. He didn’t remember me, even though I showed him some pictures of me as a teenager, over 20 years ago. I was now 38, but Bob thought I was only 24 so he had a hard time putting two and two together.

Bob Farina and his assistant Andy Loria were the salt of the earth. They kept their prices very low, which was unheard of in Montclair. They also fed the homeless and always sold cheap clothes for the homeless.

Over the Rainbow was like a shrine to the Plasmatics. Pictures of the late Wendy O. Williams, who died in 1998 due to a self-inflicted gun wound, were all over the place, including a copy of The Vegetarian Times, when Wendy O. was on the cover.

Bob shared with me that Wendy O. was the reason he got into health and she inspired him to open his store. Bob knew Wendy very well because he was not only known as the biggest Plasmatics fan, but he also did pyrotechnics for their live performances.

In addition to having all the Plasmatics memorabilia, Bob ran cool videos of movies such “The Wizard of Oz” and Laurel and Hardy flicks such as “March of the Wooden Soldiers” throughout the day. Bob also allowed a homeless woman to stay in his store during the cold winter months. He even set up a table and chair for her in the window store front.

It was so cool going to this bizarre punk rock luncheonette on a regular basis. This was something you just didn’t see – not even in New York City!

I decided it was a “must” to write an article about Bob Farina and Over the Rainbow for The Montclair Times. After my article was published, Bob offered me free lunches every day as a thank-you. I only accepted once. I wouldn’t possibly take another free lunch from a struggling business that often fed the homeless!

Bob said he loved the article, that it was well-written and accurate. “I’ll cherish the article,” he added.

I was honored.

I spent so much time at Over the Rainbow that Bob started ordering me around as if I worked there. It was hilarious! If it wasn’t, “Mare get the phone!” it was me teaching customers how to prepare seaweed, or putting napkins on the table. I would have loved to officially work there part-time if they were thriving as a business, but sadly they weren’t.

Within a year, Over the Rainbow went out of business.

I think the problem with Bob, as a business man, was that he was too honest, selling everything at cost. I brought shampoo there for $3 that would have cost $9 in another store.

After “Over the Rainbow” closed, I cringed at the thought of what stuffy, over-priced ugly “upscale” clothing store would replace the old spot.

I almost cried as I shook hands with Bob and Andy and said “good-bye.”

It was the end of something special, devastating, really. And I wondered, Where will the homeless lady go to eat now?

Lecturing on Health, Fitness and Nutrition

Published September 14, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_2377Me and activities director, Aubrey Evans at Mt. Arlington Senior Living, New Jersey

For the past few years, lecturing on health and nutrition has been a dream of mine, as my passion is health and nutrition and throughout the year 2012 I had three clients who were nutritionists and chiropractors that I’ve helped get gigs lecturing. I thought to myself, if I could do this for others — why not do it for myself? I’ve been a health food advocate since 2003 and writing about health since then. In 2008 I was the editor for NJ Health & Fitness magazine. I had my own health column in the NJ Patch online called “Here’s to Your Health.” And currently I am writing for Skinny News magazine.

Over the years I’ve interviewed many celebrities about health and fitness including supermodels Oleda Baker and Carol Alt and health advocates Patricia Bragg, Paul Nison and David Wolfe. I also had the opportunity to interview Jack LaLanne but he passed away two weeks prior to the interview.

So, needless to say, when Aubrey Evans invited me to speak at Mt. Arlington Senior Living, I was thrilled! In honor of my former health column, I called my lecture “Here’s to Your Health.”

For 45 minutes I spoke to seniors about a few easy things you could do for your health that don’t cost a dime!

I spoke of the benefits of eating slow, not smoking, keeping active and getting a good night’s rest.

But not only did I speak, I allowed the seniors to share their experiences in health and fitness. It was truly inspiring that so many of them were not smokers, kept active (including the ones that were chair bound) and got a good night’s sleep.

They were all wonderful! I enjoyed giving the lecture and they enjoyed me so much I was invited back, late October!

One lady said to me, “You’re really making us like you!” It was so cute. I love the seniors!

Another Sad Day, Another Loss

Published September 11, 2013 by Maryanne

loss of a friend

Another sad day.

I just returned from the funeral of a dear friend.

My friend Joan, entertainment editor of The Montclair Times, who I worked very closely with for eight years from 2001 to 2008, died last Friday at the age of 82:

Our desks were right next to each other, so we were very close. Plus, she was my favorite co-worker from the get-go. She just had this positive spirit that made me want to be her friend.

Joan was an attractive lady with a lust for life. She always came to work with her hair done beautifully and perfectly matched her jewelry to her outfits. She never gossiped. She just loved to talk about cultural things and all the fun we had in our personal lives. She never spoke of boring, mundane topics like doing laundry or getting your nails done — it was always about music, and theater, and restaurants, etc. She was just so upbeat — always. I never saw Joan mad about anything and she never complained. Working together so closely for seven years and we NEVER had a fight or disagreement. Except when I said I was thinking of leaving Montclair Times, she was discouraging me because she didn’t want me to leave! She even had her good friend try to talk me out of leaving! And that was the only time I was mad at her. Ha-ha, I gotta laugh now though, it was cute that she went to such extremes to try to keep me there!

Joan was super funny and we had so many laughs. I could talk to her about ANYTHING. She was so hip, she just “got it.” She’d really take her time with young kids who were starting out in the entertainment business and offer advice to them. She was so completely supportive of the arts/entertainment community. She was always eager to help give someone a start in their career. If I had friends perform at the local bar Tierney’s, she’d put them right on the front cover of the entertainment section.

Joan was a very hard worker and always had her section published a week before deadline. She loved to work and always came in smiling and waving this cute little wave. It was adorable.

Thanks to Joan, I had hundreds of articles published in the entertainment section and met so many terrific people in the industry. I was so grateful for the opportunity, yet she always made me feel like I was helping her so much — like I was doing her the favor, when in reality if it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t have stayed at Montclair Times so long. Of all the jobs I had in my life, I stayed there the longest. And every year on my birthday and for Christmas, Joan gave me amazing gifts to show her appreciation. Not to mention all the entertainment freebies.

Joan and I hung out together outside of the workplace too. We went to plays, restaurants, bars and jazz clubs together. I got to see her beautiful home too. We went to the Christmas parties together. She was like a big sister or aunt to me. I told her everything! She always gave great advice, some of which I’ve included in my business newsletters (and when she saw the emails she just KNEW I was speaking of her wisdom!)

When I left Montclair Times in 2008, Joan shed a tear and walked me out to my car, helping me carry all my belongings that were stored in my desk for seven years. And since 2008 Joan never forgot to send me a birthday card and even sent me a card when I got married.

I only visited Joan a few times since I left Montclair Times.  We kept saying we’d have lunch someday but never got around to it. The last time I saw her, earlier this year, she was frail and seemed sad.

When I heard of her retirement, I was excited for her but deep down it didn’t sit right with me because I knew she absolutely adored her work and said she wasn’t ever going to retire. I had a strong feeling it was just a matter of time. And sadly I was right.

I am so blessed for having the opportunity to work so closely to such a fascinating, inspiring woman. I lost the one photo I had of us together, but I saved quite a few emails she sent me that I will cherish.

Joan will not be forgotten. Not by me. Not by many.

Rest in peace, beautiful Joan. As I said to your daughter today, I loved you! (And will always love you!)




September 11, 2001 – My Words From That Day

Published September 11, 2013 by Maryanne


Twelve years later, I went back to my old journal and found the words I wrote on the day [Note: at the time I was working as a self-employed journalist and just became a certified legal proofreader.]

September 11, 2001

This is the worst I’ve felt since my grandmother died. I don’t even know I’m living.

I’m still waiting to hear from some MIA NYC friends. I’m afraid to go to sleep. My friend Ed took me to dinner at a nice Italian restaurant in Upper Montclair. I got all dressed up, hoping to feel a little bit better. We passed the Montclair Art Museum and saw a crowd of people taking pictures of the dark cloud over the NYC skyline.

I’m sick to my stomach.

I received phone calls from people concerned about me since I work so much in NYC, yet I’m the one worrying about everyone else.

I’m confused, wondering if I should continue my career in New York. I don’t think I have the strength to go back for awhile. I can’t just can’t imagine it. Diane was talking about the San Gennaro Feast this weekend, but I can’t see me going there. Ute Lemper, Nick Cave, Jane’s Addiction, Jonathan Richman and all the other shows I planned on seeing during the next few weeks are just fantasies that will give way to dust.

Soooo far away in my little New Jersey town, yet so close. New York City meant so much to me, all of my life. I can direct a stranger to almost anywhere in the city, but a stranger in my hometown will get lost asking me for directions in Little Falls, for I’m never here except to sleep. I’m always in my beloved New York City, working, playing and wandering aimlessly.

A friend made an interesting comment. He said that we think about our lost loved ones and feel sad, but at least they don’t have to deal with this insanity! For once, I can say I am glad my grandmother is not alive.

I pray that everyone is dealing with this the best they could. My heart goes out to all, and to all your loved ones. My friends, my enemies, I wish the best for everyone.

My soul has been ripped out from under me.

I will never be the same again.