The Gatsby: a beacon of originality, creativity, and necessity held in the palm of my hand
While I am not too familiar with the intricacies of spinners or their flourishing community, I have learned to appreciate their vibrant artistry thanks to Alysia Tran, who not only invented a spinner that I consider fundamental in my life, but who is also a dear friend of mine.
When I met Alysia a few years ago, my only concept of spinners was only limited to, well, fidget spinners—You know, the ones you find for three or four bucks at the gas station counter.
However, as I had the honor of getting to know Alysia, I recognized that instead of spinning between her forefingers a plastic, alien-like disk that clicked and clacked with each flick, she held spinners that were much more complex and beautiful. She showed me her own collection of spinners, and I acknowledged the fierce work and devotion that goes into their production.
Alysia presented me with remarkable spinners that were small, heavy, cool to the touch, composed of different elements like copper, bronze, brass (along with several metals that I cannot name off the top of my head). I liked how some wobbled when I’d rotate my wrist, or how some spun so smoothly and silently that I couldn’t tell whether or not it was moving when I closed my eyes.
Their existence, I learned, was far more elaborate than I had ever imagined, and it is something that I deeply appreciate not only because of the sophistication behind their mechanics, but also because whenever Alysia shows me a spinner that she loves, she illuminates with excitement and familiarity.
When Alysia began her trials of designing and producing her own spinner, I knew that both her thriving affinity for the craft as well as her involvement within the community would yield a product that would portray the same elements that she prefers in a spinner. The Gatsby not only succeeds in this way, but its intricate design and art-deco aesthetic proves to be both timeless and elegant. It is the result of Alysia’s vibrantly artistic, efficient, and skillful mind—and as I hold The Gatsby in the palm of my hand, I conclude that its existence was built not only from the mind, but also from the whole heart.
While The Gatsby is wildly successful in its design and quality, I have also learned its importance within my own life, for it has tremendously helped me to calm and even maintain my anxiety and panic disorder.
The nature of my anxiety is annoyingly unpredictable, and when it lingers within me, the energy I bottle up becomes focused in my hands; I often tightly clench my fists, incessantly tap my fingers, or even uncontrollably pick at the skin around my nails with my thumbs.
However, when I held The Gatsby for the first time, I comprehended a sense of calmness, a sense of comfort. I was drawn to its weight, its coolness, its silhouette and contour; how my fingers pleasantly fit upon the textured buttons; how my index finger gripped the edge and manifested a powerful spin; how each spin seemed to expel any unwarranted thoughts or fears, banishing them from my mind the way sheepdogs banish hungry foxes from herds of cattle they must protect.
Whenever I steady The Gatsby between my fingers, it is not just a spinner or a product—it is a necessity—and it has since been able to promote calmness during my fleeting moments of darkness and restlessness.
I am so proud of Alysia and her success in The Gatsby’s creation. I am also thankful that she introduced to me her passion for spinners in this dazzling context.
The Gatsby is a token I carry with me at all times, and whenever I feel myself strayed away from comfort, I spin it between my forefingers like a lucky charm; and it’s like Alysia is patting me on the shoulder, assuring me that everything is going to be okay.