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[Tidbits] The Odd Couple

Or… The Butterfly and the Octopus. A bit like The Owl and The
Pussycat but not as racy. Any of you out there old enough to remember
that one?

As an aside… the Butterfly was once called the Flutterby which to
my mind was a better name. And the Octopus was called the Devil-Fish
because of its strange appearance and the terror it evoked in the
hearts of early seafarers. I continue.

There was once a jeweler named Wilhelm Lucas von Cranach who made a
brooch for Louis Werner Juwelen in Germany circa 1900. It was a
Butterfly/Octopus Brooch.

I must assume that dear old Wilhelm was a superstitious chap who knew
without any doubts that the soul takes on the form of butterfly when
it leaves its familiar. To follow on with this utterly logical
thinking process: A Nottinghamshire belief has it that seeing three
butterflies together is as lucky as seeing three magpies together.
Sadly… no one seemed to deem it necessary to explain just how lucky
it actually is to see three magpies together. I am sure this was a
simple oversight and that seeing three magpies together is of major
importance… ranking second only to man’s landing on the moon. Still
… I suspect Wilhelm would have appreciated knowing the details
before continuing with his work.

Which brings us via the most magnificent of segues… to the
Octopus… that Eight Footed (that’s what octopus means folks) little
cephalopod which we all love beyond all things. Or at least I am sure
Wilhelm did. By the way those suction cup appendage thingies they
have dangling all over the place are called arms–not legs or foots–
among thems wot knows these things. They have a life span of only two
years. But here’s the big revelation. Some people like to keep them
as pets. Yes they do.

Here Octi Octi Octi. Do they fetch? Can they catch? Can you put mitts
on their thingies? Can they play outfield and right field and short
stop all at the same time? If not… why keep one as a pet? And even
more ponderous… if Wilhelm did indeed have one as a pet… did it
watch the tely with him at night while they sat on the living room
couch… each cuddling up with each other… arm under arm under arm?

Ah… Wilhelm must have loved his butterflies and his octopi equally
alike for in a moment of what might easily be viewed–by those who do
not understand the arcane twists and turns of the creative mind–as
muddled inspiration… Wilhelm created his aforementioned Butterfly
and Octopus brooch. Yes he did. Question is: Why? How did he think
this thing up? Did he say… hmm … if I cross-breed and octopus and
a butterfly… I’ll tell you folks this… it would have to be one
helluva receptive butterfly. But anyway… it has wings and arms and
is made of gold and pearls and diamonds and rubies and amethysts and
topaz and enamel. It’s a mish-mash conglomeration of striking
innovative beauty.

Ya wanna see it?

For those of you who are new to this thing called Tidbits…may I
direct you to my home page at where you
will scroll down the left side menu till you get to the area that
says Current Tidbits… click it… and you will see represented on
our pages an image representing the cross-breeding of two slightly
dissimilar members of the animal kingdom.

And there ya have it.
That’s it for this week folks.
Catch you all next week.
Benjamin Mark


Love this creativity! Love this muddled inspiration! Is there any
on dear old Wilhelm other jewelry projects? Did he
perhaps make calamari earrings ?

Best regards,

Mary and Benjamin

I have been pondering this piece - I love it in a zany way since
butterflies symbolize the soul and the dream and the octopus changes
and shifts with her environment, disguising herself and reappearing;
I come to the conclusion of the soul of a changling, one that drops
unwanted baggage and flies or flees as need be. Whatever Wilhelm’s
inspirations were in this piece, he brought it to fruition
beautifully. It leaves me wanting more – something like calamari.


Alas Mary,

This is all I have of Wilhelm’s. I can probably make up a pair of
calamari earrings for you. Would you like them mild or fra diavolo?