Our deportment 101

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Out of the Broomcloset Halloween photo
Out of the Broomcloset Halloween photo by Leon Calafiore

Out of the Broomcloset

It’s peculiar to realize that this column, this magazine, have been in existence before some of you, dear readers, were born. By common understanding, this covers a generation; but it really does seem that several lifetimes have been crammed into this minuscule fraction of time.

Don’t worry, this won’t be some dewy-eyed stroll down memory lane, bemoaning the loss of the good old days. While some of my generation will call you up, frantically (from landlines), desperate for help attaching a file to an e-mail, I exist, happily, in the 21st century.

Which is why this seems to be a good place to suggest some rules of the road for our collective cyber future. These will make you more effective in every circumstance, monetizing your channel, and in real life as well.

Rather than starting a war by naming names, all these comments will be directed to our new star of all media, 99 Boos, all decked out, as seen above. Has big plans to be a star, by any means, but first needs to learn some things.

Firstly, facts matter. Looking fabulous, decent production values, and having the ability to speak are all just wonderful. This is as true when filming your pet parrot. Really know your stuff; some have advocated things like putting Selenite crystals all over the place, even in water. The problem is, Selenium, except in microscopic doses, is toxic/lethal; pretty, but deadly, like so many of us.

Secondly, don’t plagiarize. You should have learned this in school, at some point.

The internet lacks an experienced teacher who easily picks up on someone’s thieving ways, alas.

Best to not steal from a witch, particularly one who is also an artist/writer. Here’s the reality; even successful creators don’t earn big bucks. That’s why they hold down jobs, and have other income streams. It’s the same reason bands sell merchandise — the music royalties suck.

There’s a contingent that, alas, thinks it’s fine to appropriate the work of others, to the point of passing it off as their own. It’s expensive to copyright everything, and to take legal action against every little twit.

“You have no style, or sense of fashion; no, that’s not a question”, as said by Meryl Streep, playing Amanda Priestley: Aline Brosh McKenna, screenplay. You see what I did there? Give credit where credit is due, permissions are not difficult to get.

While you’re online, look up the threefold law, Nemesis, and be forewarned.

One of the easiest things to do on the the Interwebs, as we are all aware, is to be a scammer.

How can you know who you’re talking to, or sending money to? Are they who they say they are?

Identity theft may be the world’s oldest profession, the only one of the various professions listed as such which I loathe. Several good friends, with respectable occult credentials and online shops or consulting practices, have had their identities hijacked, their online presence cloned.

Everything was ultimately resolved in their favor, but the loss of income, and of reputation, was painful. So, just as you might construct your wards and protections before engaging in your Magickal activities, be as diligent when conducting yourself online.

Class is dismissed. At least Boo 99 has been given sound advice. Don’t hold it against them that they’re orange; there have to be some good orange ones.

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Leon Calafiore is a lifelon Wiccan and teacher of the occult arts. He is former Master of a New York Masonic Lodge known for the perfection of ritual. Leon conducts occult research and can be reached at Facebook at facebook.com/bigbookofmagic