Posts Tagged ‘audrey hepburn’

What?!

October 30, 2012

Five million views and up? You guys are killing me! Thank you so much. I think I may have to come out of retirement for this.

My last eight months in pictures [of A]. I learned this technique from the teenagers on tumblr.

First I was like school-school-school. Then I was like work-work-work …

I loved work and school and goofing with kiddos all day …

And then five million hits …

And now I am just kind of like …


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…all the time!

Things are all aces and green lights lately in E-land. I will have some more free time soon, and, dang it, I will start making time, too. Look for plenty more malarkey from me.


Blatant false advertising: I cannot wink for shit.

I’m going to the moon! Thank you so much, always, for traveling with me!

I want to hear how you are. Comment comment comment. Where are you from? What’s your deal? Who’s your favorite Playmate? Who’s your favorite Batman? Apple or cherry pie? Tell me all.

Heinlein Month — Do not let the past be a straitjacket

July 16, 2011



Whatever you do, do not let the past be a straitjacket.

(Robert A. Heinlein. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, 1966.)


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Hey. The pre-scheduled entries caught up with real time, and then I was too lazy and depressed to write more. But I’m fixing that now. Even got a Girl of Summer in the pipeline, because, hey, man, life goes on, and my dead friend liked boobies. (Hath not a short joyful EMT eyes?) So. The rest is personal. Dip out whenever you’re done.


“Jo Champa, Hotel Chealsea.” Helmut Newton, 1988.

Yesterday were the services. Sweet fucking Christ. I have been to some rough funerals in my life. I really have. But I’ve never been through any shit like that. That was some fucking shit. My lord. And now the most recent two entries in my journal have giant cusses right at their start, when I’ve been trying really valiantly this year to cut back (first for my daughter, as an example, and also because vulgarity is so often a refuge of a weak writer attempting cheap authenticity).


Photographed by Dara Scully.

Big Ben and I agreed to attend together. He got to my place an hour earlier than planned and announced he’d left his wallet in Fresno — a town I notoriously hate, like it’s a joke among my friends how much I make fun of it. I had an idea we’d end up making the longish drive to get it back later in the day, but I didn’t say anything because I wasn’t sure what the was going to hold: what if I wanted to go back to a reception and stay for a long while? What if friends had an impropmtu wake? We didn’t know what to expect. We slid down to C-town and got to the church about twenty minutes before Mass was scheduled to start, thinking that was prudently early enough.


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Besides being friends with one another in our own right, B-dubs and I moved in a lot of similar circles. It’s not a big area when you get right down to it. Even if you only joined The Party in the last 15 to 20 years, you’ve pretty much met everyone your age by now, at least with whom you’d have a dime in common, in one way or another. There wasn’t time enough or, in some cases, inclination (willingness to engage in a lot of catch-up and mutual depression) to say words to everyone I knew, even just as we walked through the parking lot and up to the church. In the very, very long line to sign the guestbook before entering, there was this crowd of EMTs and firefighters in front of us in uniform, and I started tearing up. I’m not an overemotional person, and it caught me off guard.


Art by TheSweetMachine on the tumblr.

It was a harbinger of things to come. A bossy aunt came out not long after and told the crowd that we’d all better grab a seat inside and sign the book later, because it was getting very full in there, and we entered the church. I’d never been to St. Jude’s. It’s not by any means the smallest church in which I’ve ever heard Mass, but it wasn’t large. But it was not at all equipped, I’m proud to say, to handle the number of people at my friend’s funeral. It was literally SRO. People could’ve probably crowded the pews a little more, but a lot of the EMTs had to stay in the back near the doors because they were still on call.


“Losing My Religion” by Mrs. Colbert on the da.

Right away, on entering the church, I was up against old, old friends, serving as B-dubs’ pallbearers. So we started crying. I think, in the back of your mind, or perhaps only in mine and some of my friends’, maybe more macabre than others? or just realistic?, there is the knowledge that you will pass from this earth and enter in to whatever, if anything — I believe and hope a very real something — comes next. Sometimes you discuss it loosely with friends, like your burial/cremation wishes, songs you want involved in your memorial, etc. But you don’t take it terribly seriously. To see our old friends standing at the back of the church with white gloves and red carnation boutonnières, guiding the elderly and close relatives to seats was a profound jolt, following on the heels of the uniformed contingent reminding me of what a life of service my friend left … I basically cried for the next hour. Standing for the casket’s entry made me cry. My strong, broad-shouldered, stalwart old male friends crying as they walked that casket toward the altar made me cry. The readings made me cry. The priest’s homily made me cry. The only thing that didn’t leave me shredded was the Eucharistic prayer, maybe because I’ve had it memorized since time out of mind and it gave me time to catch my breath.


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But then my friends gave their eulogies and it was all over. It was pointed out what a remarkably, not just bullshitting like people do at funerals, but a remarkably live wire and loving spirit he was, how he literally lit up rooms and took care to take care of everyone he met. It grew as a theme that B-dubs lived his whole life, essentially, to protect and make at ease everyone else, and that we could only honor him by trying to keep taking care of each other. That’s how it ended. Everyone in the church was just in pieces. So we exited on that, this horribly emotional note. Like I said, I have been to some rough funerals, but I’ve never heard free, open weeping from so many people at a service. It was some shit, honestly, I’m not describing it well enough. God. Harrowing. Big Ben agreed it was the worst thing he’d been to so far, too. I think the priest put it best when, during his homily, after speaking about Brandon’s faith and dedication to serving others, he simply spread his hands and said, “He was too young.”


Photographed by Logan White.

After stunned chat outside the church, we caravanned to the cemetery for the graveside service. The priest said the very familiar words about dust to dust, and the valley of darkness, etc, that have always held a ritualistic comfort to me. One by one, the pallbearers came forward and placed their gloves and their boutonnières on the casket. But then — then — B-dubs’ cousin began to speak. I have very few friends, and dear they are, as specifically faithful as I am, and I am 1000000% okay with that. I’d say a majority of my friends do not believe in any god nor afterlife, and I’m truly all right with that. If they got questions about how I roll, I answer them, but I really don’t try to suggest religion to them unless I am asked. It’s been the source of debates between me and many of the people who were in attendance at these services, the idea of the co-existence of intellect and faith (hey, college).


via my pandaeraser.

This cousin began by saying that Brandon’s completion of the sacraments of the Catholic faith did not qualify him for salvation, but rather his loving relationship with God did. I was fine with that. Then, he moved forward in praise of a relationship with God and Jesus, with a format very familiar to me, that of his personal testimony about his journey to salvation. Okay. Cool. I’ve heard that lots of times and, though I sort of cringed at first, thinking, “Normally I’d be more receptive, but, come on: is this the right place — like, what has this to do with today?” I was still tentatively on board, willing to see where it lead. I’m sorry and angry still to say that it lead only to more of the same. He spoke for some easily fifteen minutes, asking everyone to read the Word (okay) and pray about it (okay), but also to repeat a personal prayer he wrote, out loud along with him. Afterward, he had us close our eyes and then said, “Raise your hand if you really repeated the prayer.”


Photograph by William Gedney, via the collection at Duke’s online library.

The uncomfortable, growing dissatisfaction I had pretty much burgeoned to full-blown dislike at that moment. At one point he threw down the Bible, but I’m not sure he noticed. He’d complained in his opening statements about not having a podium, so I’m sure that played a role, and I guess the important thing to him was what he was saying, not the source of the quotes he was citing in his very targeted proselytizing once he’d finished with them. I just know I wasn’t the only one to inadvertently have a sharp intake of breath on that one. But there was a general all-over shifting of feet and nervous sighs throughout, to be honest. This was not an issue of religious tolerance: it was an issue of inappropriateness.


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Like, dude, we are graveside. It is not an appropriate setting for a) your story; b) talking about Jesus actually very well, but relating it back to yourself again and again rather than to your cousin; and c) evangelizing to these bereaved friends of your cousin, when with a prayer for discernment it might be easily seen that now is hella not the time. Not to mention, just personally, I felt that if his argument that justification for salvation was by faith alone and not works nor acts, then why did we need to repeat his prayer and raise our hand, or not, over the issue of repeating his prayer, like guilty five-year-olds who were being asked who ate the green crayon? It all sat very, very poorly with me.


Photographed by Giasco Bertoli.

I’m Catholic, dudes. Do you just kind of always expect me to unload at some point about how you all should be, too? And how properly to do so? Because I was offended as all-git-out and I couldn’t believe how blasé some of my most atheist friends were about what to me was this needless and selfish diversion, as if they’d anticipated uncomfortable evangelistic pressure from the beginning. When Big Ben asked me in the car whether I was up to going to the family’s smaller reception after the other gauntlet points of brutal funeral and heart wrenching graveside service we’d passed, I said, “I don’t want to go anywhere that douche is going to be.” He replied immediately, “That was pretty bad. But everyone grieves differently. Would Brandon have been okay with it, since it was his cousin? Probably. He’d want his cousin to have that time.”

I wiped away my tears, started the car, and said emphatically, “Fuck that guy. If that’s how he grieves, he sucks.” We did not go to the reception.

A little under three hours later, we were in Fresno, retrieving Ben’s wallet. That joke which I am famous for is, “No one should go to Fresno. Not on purpose.” But it’s really a diverse town, like any. Anyway, after we got the wallet from his friend, the friend asked for a cigarette because his girlfriend had asked him to quit smoking and he knew we’d have one. As we stood outside, at our friend’s insistence safely behind his apartment building in case his girlfriend came home unexpectedly — yes, we ribbed him without mercy both for his dishonesty and for his paranoia — Ben described the scene at the graveside with the cousin. The friend, who’d said plainly that he did not believe in an afterlife but felt that funerals were important for the living, which I liked, asked questions about the mourners’ reaction to the cousin’s unnecessarily aggressive come-to-Jesus sidebar. I’d stayed silent about that part of the services, still steaming. Ben jerked his thumb at me and said, “She was pissed.”


“Don’t see the sorrow,” photographed by meninalua on the da.

The friend clucked his tongue but then said, “Maybe that’s how he needed to grieve.”

What the what, man? Am I the only one whose sense of outrage is not overshadowed by sorrow? Or am I the only one who is blindly seeking refuge in outrage instead of sorrow? Maybe? And not to mention, I found comfort in aspects of the funeral that were Catholic and so culturally and familially familiar to me, but what of my friends raised outside that tradition? Did not my “stand up, sit down, kneel, repeat after me, say this when I say that” comforts probably confound and alienate those friends who were not accustomed to it? What right have I got to judge which are off-putting and which welcoming religious behaviors? I was sooo mad. You should have seen me. Wet hen-style. Fairly? Not, most likely. Oh, angry, mixed-up me.


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But what I really want to say is good on those friends who gently chastised or tried to guide me back to zen-ness, for being yards more tolerant than I the alleged Christian witness of the bunch was evincing with my bitterness: they displayed a genuinely universal forgiveness for which I think many who recognize the love that bonds all things in this world without necessarily having an origin story for that love are seldom credited. I, on the other hand, wanted literally to point-blank fire a nail gun in to the eyeballs of my dead friend’s cousin’s head. Which is not at all loving. I know.

Now I’ve talked a great deal about one aspect of the day which was really not as big as I’ve made it out to be in this entry, and it’s not some hint of how repressed or larger it looms in my psyche than I knew by my writing it. It’s just that in a day so filled with grief, it was the thing I could describe with a more familiar emotion — outrage. The grief I will take a long time to get to know. The events of the day made me cry right away, as they happened, a big enough pain that I didn’t have time to push it down, it spilled over with me fully aware that I was unhappy. Most feelings don’t get that far in my cognitive process. So I know it’s going to be a journey to get cool with this dreadful shit.

Movie Millisecond: Gracious

July 2, 2011

B @ T’s (Blake Edwards, 1961).

Movie Millisecond and The Way They Were: William and Audrey edition

June 3, 2011


William Holden and Audrey Hepburn as David Larrabee and Sabrina Fair(child).

Isn’t that always the way of it? Sabrina (Billy Wilder, 1954).

William Holden and Audrey Hepburn fell in love on this set and began a very passionate affair.

“Before I even met her, I had a crush on her, and after I met her, just a day later, I felt as if we were old friends, and I was rather fiercely protective of her though not in a possessive way.

(William Holden, qtd. in William Holden: A Biography. Michelangelo Capua. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Co., 2010. p. 79.)



“She was the love of my life. Sometimes at night, I’d get a portable record player and drive out to the country to a little clearing we’d found. We’d put on ballet music. Some of our most magic moments were there.”

(Ibid. p. 81)


Audrey and William on location in Lower Manhattan for Sabrina, 1953.

Supposedly Holden wanted to officially leave his wife Ardis, from whom he was separated for the majority of his marriage, and be with Audrey, but she turned him down because he’d had a vasectomy and being a mother was essential to her. I’ve never really seen that 100% substantiated. In any case, Audrey allegedly announced her engagement to Mel Ferrer at a party the Holdens were hosting. And you thought you’d been through bad break-ups.

Audrey married Mel Ferrer in 1954, Holden became an alcoholic who grew difficult to insure on pictures, and they did not see each other for a decade, until they were paired again in 1963 to film Paris When It Sizzles.


“I remember the day I arrived at Orly Airport for Paris When It Sizzles. I could hear my footsteps echoing against the walls of the transit corridor, just like a condemned man walking the last mile. I realized that I had to face Audrey and I had to deal with my drinking. And I didn’t think I could handle either situation.”

(William Holden.)

He was right in that assessment. Hollywood legend has it that William Holden tried repeatedly, with horrible results, to win back the woman he cited as the love of his life.

According to scriptwriter George Axelrod, Holden often showed up on set drunk and, on one occasion, climbed a tree by a wall leading up to her room. Hepburn leaned out the window to find out where the noise was coming from when Holden grabbed and kissed her. He then slipped out of the tree and landed on a parked car below.

(Martin Gitlin. Audrey Hepburn. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press. 2009. p. 72.)


Audrey’s interest in men, according to the few who got to know her intimately during her career, though strong, was intermittent. She had affairs when passing through emotionally tense times. She had a preference for men who made the first move, who were bold, … and [who] didn’t appreciate her rare nature. Observers were surprised at Audrey’s tolerance of her lovers’ habits, their bluntness and sometimes crude languge: the opposite of her composed nature. Perhaps that was where their attractiveness lay.

(Alexander Walker. Audrey: her real story. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1994. p. 90-91.)

Audrey died of cancer January 20, 1993. As for William Holden,

On November 12, 1981, Holden was alone and intoxicated in his apartment in Santa Monica, California, when he slipped on a throw rug, severely lacerated his forehead on a teak bedside table, and bled to death. Evidence suggests he was conscious for at least half an hour after the fall. It is probable that he may not have realized the severity of the injury and did not summon aid, or was unable to call for help. His body was found four days later.

(the wiki.)

R.I.P. to both.

Retread — Music Moment: Mother’s Day edition — “The Heart of the House,” by Alanis Morissette

May 8, 2011

I hope your mom has a good Mother’s Day. Sick burn! Except actually a fond wish …

Alanis Morissette — “The Heart of the House”


Shirley MacLaine and daughter Sachi.

You are the original template.
You are the original exemplary.
How seen were you, actually?
How revered were you, honestly, at the time?


Mirrormask.
Why pleased with your low maintenance?
Where was your ally,
your partner in feminine crime?
But, oh, mother, who’s your buddy?
Oh, mother, who’s got your back?


Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher on Debbie’s birthday.
The heart of the house,
The heart of the house.
All hail the goddess.


Joanie and Christina.
You were “good-ol'”
You were “count on her ’til four a.m.”
You saw me run from the house
In the snow melodramatically.


Marvelous Jessica Walter as Lucille on Arrested Development. It is comforting to know there are many worse winkers in the world than me. (But I wager not a great many.)
But, oh, mother, who’s your sister?
Oh, mother, who’s your friend?
The heart of the house.
The heart of the house.
All hail the goddess.


Shirley and Sachi again, by Leo Fuchs. I adore pictures of the two of them together.
We left the men and we went for a walk in the gatineaus
And talked like women,
Like women to women would.
“‘Women to women would’ — where did you get that from?
Must’ve been your father, your dad.”


Audrey Hepburn and her mother before the Occupation.
I got it from you, I got it from you.
Do you see yourself in my gypsy garage sale ways?
In my fits of laughter?
In my tinkerbell tendencies?
In my lack of color coordination?


Probably like the fifth time I’ve used this picture. Bebe Buell and Liv Tyler, beautiful women and loving mothers both.

All my best wishes to the maternal among us of any age or gender. I don’t believe God intends any of us to be orphans. In the absence of a literal physical “mother,” I hope we are able to open our hearts to others in our lives that wish to help fill that role. And if you have still your original mom, won’t you call her or something? It’s a horrible and complex thing and that’s why none of us mothers are perfect, because it’s the first time you realize that you have to be this role first, and a person second, and though high-handed so-called instruction books abound, your own children arrive essentially manual-less. Cut mom a break and shoot her a thank you, maybe? As Panda says, file that under “just sayin’.” SeaQuest out!

Knock-knock: Who’s there? Still alive and quick explanation with bonus preview of coming attractions

April 1, 2011


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Don’t tell anyone I did this but … unannounced hiatus has been due to Lent: wanted to see if I could give up something that was actually hard not to do this year. It is way tougher than diet coke or dessert, from which I’ve also been abstaining. But I didn’t give up smoking or bloody beer — I’m not completely crazy.

In the meantime, a preview of coming attractions:


La Maschera del Demonio/The Mask of Satan/Black Sunday/The Black Mask (Mario Bava, 1960).

  • Some actual in-depth Mario Bava Movie Moments. It’s a scandal that I only did, like, one. I’m such a hack. Super-sorry. Feel free to browse the complete Movie Moments or Movie Milliseconds category while I’m gone and take a stroll down memory lane.
  • Even more Men Aren’t Attracted to a Girl In Glasses, Sk8 or Die, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys, and Hot Men Bein’ Hot of the Day.

  • May Flowers — E’s favorite Miss Mays of yore. Pictured below is the lovely and talented Cindy Fuller, Miss May 1959. Other May Flowers will include Dolly Read and Anna Nicole Smith (posing as “Vickie”). Like, are you simply all kinds of psyched?

    In the meantime, remember that all the past spotlighted Playmates in the journal’s various projects have now been placed in their own Playboy category for your streamlined browsing pleasure, as well as to make it even more convenient for Hef to one day sue the everloving crap out of me.

  • Liberated Negative Space is a given.
  • Haven’t forgotten about the Bond Girls project. Name will be “Naughty Girls Need Love, Too,” because the best Bond Girls are the bad ones. Ow! (Please do not talk to me about Miss Moneypenny. I will clap my hands over my ears and sing the Goldfinger song, and you don’t want to hear that, believe me.)


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  • Milton May: a month of quotes and insights on the antiheroic nature of Satan from that uniquely dogmatic, blind, old-timey charmer, John Milton (Paradise Lost).
  • And finally, in Teevee Time news, the Simpsons will get their own category, along with screencapped scandalous moments from a mystery shuck-and-jive sitcom of days gone by at which you will just have to guess.


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    …. And at which you have now guessed, correctly, unless you did a lot of tranqs in the last fifteen to twenty years. Don’t do drugs, kids. Don’t be like Carol Brady. Not ever.

    All in all, I’ve been storming along, barbituate-free, like a Lent-observing bat outta hell and I got a lot of dogs in the fire — I’m looking forward to a strong return as soon as Easter has passed. As you can see, I will be back with a bang in a few weeks. This has just been a “can I even do it?” excercise to flex my muscles of restraint.

    Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to see a man about a Giants’ game.


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    Don’t you dare.

    Catch you all on the upcoming flip side!

  • Dip, dive, socialize. Get ready for the Saturday night.

    January 15, 2011


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    Hitting a luxe banquet with wonderful old friendoh the Axeman tonight (aka Misterr Anndersonnn: say it in the Matrix voice). Free food, open bar — really fun company that he works for. And as for attire, am I Hep-burning it up? You bet your sweet Aunt Fanny I am. It’s the only way to fly.


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    Have a great night out there and I’ll catch you on the flip!

    First B@T’s Movie Moment of 2011. Balloons just fell all over us all.

    Dickens December and Movie Millisecond: Shutting out life

    December 9, 2010

    Sabrina (Billy Wilder, 1954.)


    In shutting out the light of day, she had shut out infinitely more; that, in seclusion, she had secluded herself from a thousand natural healing influences; that, her mind, brooding solitary, had grown diseased, as all minds do and must and will that reverse the appointed order of their Maker.

    (Charles Dickens. Great Expectations. Chapter 49.)

    Oh, Miss Havisham. You are a thousand times more interesting and poignant than Pip. I’ve never liked Pip. What’s to like?


    Photographed by Heather Lucille on the flickr.

    When I read Great Expectations, the kind of picaresque adventures of Phillip Pirrip are all well and good, but, at the end of the day, it’s Miss Havisham that stands head and shoulders above the rest of the characters as a literary creation that surpasses the book that contains her, just as Heathcliff and the witches from Macbeth do in their respective stories. The image of her wrapped in her rotting bridal garments like a shroud, decaying in the gross crypt that Satis House has become — that’s what I look forward to seeing the handling of in screen and theatrical adaptations. I could give two craps about Pip. It’s all Miss Havisham, and her redemption. Yes?

    Burroughs Month and Movie Millisecond: The cake is a lie, but the whiskey is very, very real

    November 27, 2010

    The whiskey is not a lie.


    Auds as Ms. Holly G in B @T’s (Blake Edwards, 1961).

    Truth is used to vitalize a statement rather than devitalize it. Truth implies more than a simple statement of fact. “I don’t have any whiskey,” may be a fact, but it is not a truth.

    (Burroughs, William S. The Adding Machine: Selected Essays. New York: Seaver Books, 1986.)

    I get this one. And in my case, when I say, “I don’t have any whiskey,” if I emphasize the “I,” I would actually be properly vitalizing the fact with the truth: I positively never, ever have whiskey because I hate-hate-hate the stuff. Can barely stand to think about it, let alone have it around. I don’t have whiskey is a truth. For me. I think I’m getting it right.

    Movie Moment: That one little movie and confession — the vanity

    September 25, 2010

    The source of these screencaps is a tiny little-known film from which you’ve likely never seen stills. I will not trouble you with the title, as even the star’s name escapes me.

    So here’s how shallowly I am capable of behaving even after recovery from some serious illness, in case you get the impression from my tomboyishness or my interest in peace studies and nonprofits that I have a diminished capacity for the same cripplingly pathetic vanity that plagues us all — when they gave me the word yesterday that they were going to release me from the hospital later in the day, the very first thing I did is I called in a hair appointment. Like, literally, from my bed at the hospital I called the salon. I hadn’t washed my hair in fifteen days except for this weird dry-chem showercap full of shampoo and setting lotions that one of the nurses gave me twice. I kept brushing my bizarrely slick, pomaded hair in to this hideous half-ass poofy chignon and pinning flowers in it to distract from how filthy it was and keep myself cheerful. Then on top of this they’d told me it would be at least three to four days before I can safely shower. I have some sutures, etc., from various tubes I’d had put in for dialysis and then had jerked out waiting to close up, and getting the wounds wet I’m told is a Very Bad Thing.


    Related anecdote.*

    Also, they didn’t have to do it, but since I was already in there getting all kinds of stuff done anyways, I had them switch my boobs around, too, so I have to heal from that procedure as well. I just needed a change, you know?

    So, yes, the first thing I did on hearing I was going to be sprung was call up my stylist and tell her I desperately needed a wash and blow out. When I was fidgeting, waiting on the paperwork and worrying about whether someone was going to snatch up my freedom on some flimsy whim and stall my discharge, keeping me away from my dear kidlet and my own bed and toilet yet another night, I was secretly mainly fretting over whether I’d be out in time to keep that all-important hair appointment. In the mouth of recovery from death, I was mortified and primarily motivated by my hair. Oh, the vanity.

    Looks really good, though. I keep touching it and stroking it like it is a pet from which I’ve been separated. My god, the vanity. I’m about thirteen years old, I think. I can only laugh at myself.

    On the e. coli thing, I checked in to it, and I guess it’s okay and not uncommon to have a little e. coli. I guess it will go away? The More You Know.





    *Related to this still, my mother and I invented a game during my stay called Saddest Stripper. We tried to top each other with descriptions of sad strippers — e.g., vertical caesarean scars, visible scurvy, leaky dead eye. I thought I won with my vivid description of a foaming syphilitic with a full head and neck-cage collar thing, but Mom swept when she thoughtfully said, “One leg and an IV.” Horrible, horrible joke but for some reason it really worked. Perhaps because of all the time I’d just spent on IV, it was the idea of dragging the single leg and the IV about the stage in a g-string while attempting to bump and grind that slayed us. I hope none of that offends any sad stripper readers; sorry. Also, glancing over the brief list I gave, it looks like the attributes I best remember us naming are those a stripper might share with a pirate. Intriguing.

    Liberated Negative Space o’ the Day: “Your Friend, Holly Golightly”

    August 1, 2010


    And I said, “What about Breakfast at Tiffany’s?”

    I don’t know how the weather is faring in your town but in my neck of the woods, I’m hot. Once I’ve finished cooking up preliminary materials for an orientation I’m putting on for the Scamps this week, I’m sliding down to C-town to swim with Paolo, Miss D, Gorgeous George and Corinnette — and to wish Corinnette all the best as she goes away for college. Catch you on the flip!

    Goethe Month: Roman Holiday edition

    July 14, 2010


    Outtake of Audrey on a Vespa for Roman Holiday (William Wyler, 1953).

    Though you’re a whole world, Rome, still,
    without Love,
    The world isn’t the world,
    and Rome can’t be Rome.

    (Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, The Roman Elegies, 1789.)

    Flashback Friday: Antisocial flutterby

    June 25, 2010

    This entry was posted in its original form October 4, 2009 at 3:30 pm. This was less than a week before Paolo and Miss D’s wedding. They have a wonderful relationship and a good marriage, and I want to point that out because I feel I’ve come off as down on the marriage thing lately. It is my own shit and observations and nothing to do with the good people who make a beautiful thing work.

    Ah, then, I must have it all backward; do I, Anna Karina?

    This is how antisocial I am, and this is the price I pay: just a bit ago, I called Thai House on Tully (best. I am sorry, best. — no, stop talking. best.) to see if they were open, and when someone picked up the phone, I simply hung up, because I felt my question had been adequately answered by the mere fact of a voice on the other end. Are there people at Thai House working? Yes, I deduced. And did not bother to speak, just hit “end.” That’s right, I wordlessly disconnected a call with the business I was planning to patronize purely for the purpose of limiting my level of interaction with other people.

    I enjoy this restaurant and bear its employees nothing but good will, but did my actions remotely reflect this? No. I admit they did not.

    So then. THEN. I go to Thai House, my mind teeming with satay and moo yang daydreams, and, as I likely deserved, it wound up they are closed until 4:30. Whoever answered the phone would probably happily have told me that, had I not hung up to avoid talking to a fellow human being.

    I deserve the wait. To make up for what I’d done, when Gorgeous George hopped on to the yahoo chat and asked me to look over a recent draft of his toast for Paolo and Miss D’s wedding, I suggested that he join me at Thai House later. It is good to have a reason to comb your hair and act human. It’s important to do these things and not hole up in my cave. I’m sure of it. Otherwise I will fall out of practice at being talked to and I will lose whatever magic I might still have, and then how will I ever interact again, as I am striving to do because I have good reasons?

    William Blake Month: She who burns with youth and knows no fixed lot; is bound / In spells of law to one she loathes

    June 24, 2010

    Some thoughts from Mr. Blake on free love, fidelity, procreative pressure, and the institution of marriage as it functioned (and did not) for ladies during his lifetime:


    Jane Birikin and the dread Serge G.

    … She who burns with youth and knows no fixed lot;
    is bound
    In spells of law to one she loathes:
    and must she drag the chain
    Of life, in weary lust!


    Must chilling murderous thoughts obscure
    The clear heaven of her eternal spring?
    to bear the wintry rage
    Of a harsh terror driv’n to madness, bound to hold a rod
    Over her shrinking shoulders all the day;


    Marilyn and Arthur on their wedding day. Marilyn’s dress was ivory but her veil arrived white, so rather than freak out or buy a new one she soaked it in tea overnight. She was an orphan and imminently practical.

    & All the night
    To turn the wheel of false desire: and longings
    that wake her womb
    To the abhorred birth of cherubs in the human form
    That live a pestilence & die a meteor & are no more.

    (William Blake, excerpt from Visions of the Daughters of Albion. 1793. Shockingly self-published.)


    The Graduate (Kubrick, 1967).EDIT: It was directed by Mike Nichols, not Stanley Kubrick. Jesus-christ-bananas. How that got past me is a mystery. Mucho mas mucho thanks to Peteski for the heads-up!

    Happy bride month, am I right? Goin’ to the chapel…

    In all seriousness, William Blake was a sort of pre-feminist and a great admirer of Mary Wollstonecraft but for all his forward-thinking, he could behave curiously backwardly and contemporarily to the times in his personal life, almost as if his own wife, Catherine, did not count in his reckoning of the equalities of the opposite sex.


    Audrey and Mel. She looks terribly unhappy and trapped. I do not believe this was their wedding day but rather shortly before their breakup in an ad for Givenchy’s L’Interdit, the first celebrity fragrance. I wear Givenchy Amarige when I am Really Me. But that is very rare. So often it is best to be Other Me-s, so I roll with Michael by Michael Kors.

    As an example, when they had trouble conceiving, Blake openly advocated bringing another, younger woman into their marriage and relegating Catherine to second-class status in a different bedroom. My guess is he backed up his proposal by citing the timeless, good ol’ Rachel/Leah biblical argument, which reminds me that I get to hit Handmaid’s Tale next month.


    Humbert and Lo’s toes. Lolita (Kubrick, 1962).

    Okay, I went in to more insomnia-fueled bookfoolery and this entry is now uncomfortably longer than I’d prefer a Blake one to be. I’m going to split it up. Meet me in the next post. More Kubrick, even (I didn’t intend for that to happen but now that it has I’m on board). (edit: again, The Graduate is directed by Mike Nichols. Not Stanley Kubrick.)

    Per mi amico: Husbandoh, “‘Congradulations’ on your birthday” edition

    June 21, 2010

    Happy birthday, HRH.

    I know it’s weird with us all in estrangement and the like, but the important thing I want you to remember is the time we went to Lucy’s Table and that one waitress who later opened a meditative health center with her husband dropped the champagne as she popped the cork and it spun in the air as it fell and it hosed down THE ENTIRE RESTAURANT in a ten foot radius and the windows and tables and all those third-wave anorexic hipster yippies were dripping with wine. We did that.

    Then we went to sit outside with our dessert and that very nice but drunk as shit first-wave yippie lady told us about walking around naked in front of her son when he was young, and then she apologized to us at great length for her generation being poor stewards of the earth and they misspelled “Congratulations” in some kind of very expensive alcohol-and-caramel-dulce-de-leche reduction sauce on your flourless chocolate cake plate.

    Sometimes I forget that through no deliberate actions of your own you are somehow elected by the forces in this universe to be a one-man wrecking-crew of every situation you enter. Thank you for being a genial agent of chaos akin to Pigpen, because the anxious uptight energy of my yin at that time deserved and needed that yang to grow and see that what we must always try to do in this world is to stop time and bring back what’s died and it is not a thing we can do alone.

    Thank you for trying with me. Happy birthday.

    Screw you, Thursday

    June 10, 2010

    Thursday actually is my least favorite day of the week, and has been since I was a kid.

    I also don’t like the month of November and I hate the numbers eleven and five — especially five. It’s so stupid and five-y. Five, your shit is tired. It’s so smug. Five is a smug number.

    The origins of these strong negative associations are lost to me, maybe some kind of childhood thing that is now shrouded in mystery. In any case: Thursday. I hate how it even looks. Screw you, Thursday.

    June is bustin’ out all over — time to jump along with it

    June 3, 2010

    Today has gone about as I expected, but with weirdly more zen-like contentment and even restrained happiness.

    The principal as much as said at the interview that she would have to go with the more experienced teacher to fill the position at the school where I’ve been working as an aide and substitute, no matter how she felt personally about me, due to parent demand for fully credentialed teachers, as I had anticipated. I assured her I understood that with the parents, it is always a delicate balance and I appreciated that she was in an awkward position. We agreed it was a shame that I can’t in good conscience take out a loan and pursue my credential until I have a job to finance that academic endeavor, and the promise of one in my own field is worth holding out for, but I can’t secure a position like that without proof I am at least beginning an effort to be in a credential program, which puts me in this awful Catch-22.


    Brigitte Bardot photographed by Phillipe Halsman, 1951.

    But overall it was a really positive, loving, and upbeat interview, and it accomplished my chief goal, which was to demonstrate the sincerity of my committment to the little community she has created at her school. She was really nice and spoke glowingly of things she hoped we would be able to do in the near future. She said frankly that she wanted me on her staff and that once this position was filled according to tradition and political appeasement, there would not be pretty much any competition for whatever new openings may arise next year. It was a good talk.


    via Square America.

    So. Happy thoughts. Great things happening in my life with these tutoring jobs for the Scamps and kidlet finishing up kindergarten tomorrow, plus my Katohs graduates high school tonight, and all in all I’ve got a million things to be thankful about and a new season in which to celebrate them. And I have decided — no more hiding and tossing in my sleep. No more anxiety and self-doubt constantly wracking me. No more tearing at my fingernails and spitting them out while my mind hashes through all the ways things can go wrong and obsesses over my bank account.


    Audrey Hepburn photographed by Philippe Halsman, 1955.

    Time to start leaping a little. Let’s do it!

    Music Moment: Mother’s Day edition — “The Heart of the House,” by Alanis Morissette

    May 9, 2010

    I hope your mom has a good Mother’s Day. Sick burn! Except actually a fond wish …

    Alanis Morissette — “The Heart of the House”


    Shirley MacLaine and daughter Sachi.

    You are the original template.
    You are the original exemplary.
    How seen were you, actually?
    How revered were you, honestly, at the time?


    Mirrormask.
    Why pleased with your low maintenance?
    Where was your ally,
    your partner in feminine crime?
    But, oh, mother, who’s your buddy?
    Oh, mother, who’s got your back?


    Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher on Debbie’s birthday.
    The heart of the house,
    The heart of the house.
    All hail the goddess.


    Joanie and Christina.
    You were “good-ol'”
    You were “count on her ’til four a.m.”
    You saw me run from the house
    In the snow melodramatically.


    Marvelous Jessica Walter as Lucille on Arrested Development. It is comforting to know there are many worse winkers in the world than me. (But I wager not a great many.)
    But, oh, mother, who’s your sister?
    Oh, mother, who’s your friend?
    The heart of the house.
    The heart of the house.
    All hail the goddess.


    Shirley and Sachi again, by Leo Fuchs. I adore pictures of the two of them together.
    We left the men and we went for a walk in the gatineaus
    And talked like women,
    Like women to women would.
    “‘Women to women would’ — where did you get that from?
    Must’ve been your father, your dad.”


    Audrey Hepburn and her mother before the Occupation.
    I got it from you, I got it from you.
    Do you see yourself in my gypsy garage sale ways?
    In my fits of laughter?
    In my tinkerbell tendencies?
    In my lack of color coordination?


    Probably like the fifth time I’ve used this picture. Bebe Buell and Liv Tyler, beautiful women and loving mothers both.

    All my best wishes to the maternal among us of any age or gender. I don’t believe God intends any of us to be orphans. In the absence of a literal physical “mother,” I hope we are able to open our hearts to others in our lives that wish to help fill that role. And if you have still your original mom, won’t you call her or something? It’s a horrible and complex thing and that’s why none of us mothers are perfect, because it’s the first time you realize that you have to be this role first, and a person second, and though high-handed so-called instruction books abound, your own children arrive essentially manual-less. Cut mom a break and shoot her a thank you, maybe? As Panda says, file that under “just sayin’.” SeaQuest out!

    Flashback Friday — Audrey Hepburn half-day, Even-steven?

    April 8, 2010

    All right, my dear departed, that has been an awful lot of you-ness. I am starting to get snippy toward your weight in the alt text for the photos and I’d hate to muck up this nice little apology thing I’ve had going, so I think I am going to deem that my karmic debt has been paid. Let us merrily part ways. I’m sure I’ll see you around these parts again soon, but I am not ready to get heavily in to you and my feelings all the way just yet. See you on the other side of the rainbow.

    Thus ends Audrey Hepburn Half-Day!

    Flashback Friday — Audrey Hepburn half-day, Advice: Not from Audrey, really, but she lived it

    April 8, 2010

    This quote is often misattributed to Audrey Hepburn, but it was merely one of her favorite pieces of writing, to which she looked in developing her own personal life philosophy. I have a feeling she’d appreciate it if the following advice were properly credited to its original source, humorist and writer Sam Levenson.

    For attractive lips, speak words of kindness.

    For lovely eyes, seek out the good in people.

    For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry.

    For beautiful hair, let a child run his or her fingers through it once a day.

    For poise, walk with the knowledge you’ll never walk alone.

    People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; Never throw out anybody.

    Remember, If you ever need a helping hand, you’ll find one at the end of your arm.

    As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.



    The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides. –Sam Levenson

    I will add only that I’ve been thinking about it and I believe that a real woman is a human who happens to be born female, and a true lady who has lived her life to the fullest can hope for no better than to be regarded and recorded as such. THE END.