Good morning! We hope that all the tryptophan and Beaujolais provided a momentary respite from the reality that the world’s most vital democracy is now being run by a Twitter troll. But here we are!
*nods in agreement*
From Willie Brown’s weekly column in the SF Chronicle, WILLIE’S WORLD:
Stay tuned, Dear blog readers. Stay tuned.
November 13, 2016 at 4:37 am (Conversations, Eavesdropping, Food and Drink, Places, Surprises, Weather, Women Writers)
Tags: elections, farmers markets, novel, politics, reading lists, San Francisco, Saturday
This novel was published seven years ago, but it’s about a 2006 mid-term election.
That shows you how long self hangs on to reviews of books she’s adding to her reading list. She will go to a bookstore, armed with her file of New York Times Book Review clippings, she will first search the shelves and then end up asking for help from a bookstore staff person, and that person will look at self’s clipping, then his/her eyes will wander down to the date at the bottom of the page, and they will say (which has happened on at least three separate occasions), in a very offended tone: “Ma’am, this review is dated 2010.” Subtext: Are you freaking nuts?
The last novel she inquired about was Sara Gruen’s Ape House.
What can she say? She’s been living la vida loca for a very, very long time. So long that hyperactivity seems to be the norm.
In an incredible stroke of luck, self is reading Fowler’s Wit’s End the week after the elections. It would seem that, in 2009, there was the same kind of zeitgeist roiling around northern California. Because while reading Wit’s End, it could be 2016. She doesn’t even have to change a single word in a few passages, it reads like 2016:
A few pages later:
It’s been really hot in San Francisco (Ha, ha, ha — she’ll never complain about San Francisco coolness again! It’s sweltering hot. Like Global Warming with a capital G. W.) Self went to the Ferry Building to cool off. And overheard a woman say: “I’m still traumatized over those election results.”
And then, a few steps further, a vendor was calling out “Sea Salt! Sea Salt!” He beckoned to a young couple passing by and said: “Young lovers, this might be your last shot at happiness! Have a taste!”
Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.
“I feel like I’m going crazy. Everything’s making me paranoid.”
“You have a right to be. Klaus is still out there, trying to kill you.”
Elena (Interior monologue): Oh thank God. I thought for a minute there, I was going crazy.
These girls next door never quit!
The laughter comes in waves. The current laughing cycle began at 5:50 a.m. or thereabouts.
Self peers out her apartment window, sees one lighted window in the building next door, and it’s on the side facing hers. She wouldn’t mind so much if, Friday night, the same laugh/screech/laugh cycle hadn’t occurred until the wee hours.
Honestly, there is no room for meaningful discourse in this dialogue. Because there is just one uproarious laugh after another.
See that yellow spot on the carpet? (SCREECHING LAUGHTER)
See what time it is? (SCREECHING LAUGHTER)
Know what my name is? (SCREECHING LAUGHTER)
At first self thought, they’re young and giddy because they’re so excited about being in San Francisco! San Francisco is the Golden Gate, the Dragon’s Gate, the Ferry Building, Golden Gate Park etc. And we’re young! And WE’RE HERE! AND WE’RE SO COOL!
Self is gratified to know that somewhere in the building next door, there are girlfriends who know how to be girlfriends. How to simply LAUGH. It must be such a joyous feeling to have laugh fest with your roommates, at 5:58. To know that, at the drop of a hat, at any hour of the day or night, you will have hilarious interaction with your roomies.
(Self recognizes your individual laughs, girls! She knows the one that goes: gasp/hiccup/HA!/gasp/hiccup; as well as the one that goes HEE HEE HEE HEE HEE!)
If self were the mother of teenage daughters, would she have to endure this type of giggly on a daily basis?
BTW, self read somewhere that “giggle” should never be used, in any form of writing. Never. Because, according to advise dispenser, no one but no one giggles.
Self will now hunt for that writing website, so she can tell the author of the article that she lives next door to girls who really know how to giggle. Non-stop. Now, that level of giggle takes commitment.
Self watched The Emmys this year. Surely anyone watching would have heard about Black-ish.
She just stumbled on it tonight. There are two scenes in tonight’s episode that were so on-point, and both of them take place in an elevator.
Elevator Scene # 1:
There’s Anthony Anderson (She’ll insert his character name here as soon as she googles) about to step into an elevator. The elevator doors part, and here is a moment: there’s a little white kid in there, all alone. The kid has blonde ringlets. She looks like Shirley Temple. Her eyes are swollen from crying.
Anthony Anderson looks at her. He just looks at her. And in that moment, self knew exactly what he was thinking: He cannot, simply cannot, be laying his hands on a white child he doesn’t know.
While he stands there completely immobilized, the elevator doors close on the weeping child.
Elevator Scene No. 2:
Anthony Anderson and two colleagues stand in an elevator. The lone woman with them in the elevator car is white. She’s on her cell. She says, into her phone: My Visa Number is: xxxx-xxxx-xxxx, not giving a hoot about anyone else in the elevator. Anderson and his friends exchange looks behind her back.
White woman goes on to say: I’m single. And I live alone. Oh, don’t worry. The security cams don’t work. That’s just for show.
And by this time, the three men in the elevator are exchanging serious freak-out looks? Cause all three are African American.
Self was so LMAO! ROFL! LOL!
Self has two words, only two words to describe the movie. And those are:
Holy moly, the guy is perfectly cast as Reginald De Courcy, a confused yet decent young man who becomes the romantic target of a beautiful and conniving widow played by Kate Beckinsale.
As Samuel plays this smitten young nobleman, you can’t take your eyes off him. And yes, self writes this knowing that Kate Beckinsale is right there, sharing most of his scenes.
Chloe Sevigny is also great in her role as the straight-faced, American confidant of Kate Beckinsale’s Lady Susan. Never once does her mask slip. The only thing “not British” about her is her accent — which is strange, not flat-out American, but certainly keeps us guessing. She shows generous dollops of bosom, in contrast to Lady Susan’s very slender form. And that’s another way in which this movie is sly: just having these two actresses stand side by side, Stillman ensures that the viewer’s eye is always engaged, always parsing, always differentiating. Whew! This is no stuffy period film!
As self walked out of the movie theatre, she overheard a young woman telling her companion: “They’re jabbing at each other right and left, all with salon manners and smiles.”
Yes! That is exactly the point the movie was trying to get across! And kudos that the message came through so clearly.
Self must own up to having confused Xavier Samuel with Matt Czuchry of The Good Wife. They do look somewhat similar. Here’s Matt, also delicious.
Next up: “Me Before You,” featuring Sam Claflin (Finnick! You’re alive!) and Emilia Clark (first big role post-GOT)
Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.
Have dear blog readers ever tasted a lukewarm chocolate milkshake?
(Self knows, right?)
It is a hot day in Oxford, UK. Everyone strolling around, including three tourists who are attracting attention for a (fake) loud quarrel — self is pretty clued-in now to what’s fake and what’s real. All you have to do, really, is look at the person’s face. The woman who is allegedly being wronged by her two male companions has a huge, shit-eating grin on her face. She has cropped, dyed-platinum-blonde hair. She has deep brown, leathery skin. She’s wearing blue jeans and a white tank top. This makes her stand out because most of the women self sees around Oxford are of two, maybe three types: young Asian women who are extremely thin, very stylish, and very low-key; young white women who wear sneakers, cigarette jeans, and muted sweaters; older white women who dress a bit eccentrically, in floppy hats, or voluminous, bright sweaters. The strange woman keeps screaming, at the top of her voice, ruining a pleasant afternoon: LEAVE ME ALONE! ASSHOLE!
Really, self hates the drama. This is on a tiny street, where everyone’s so quiet, they all jerk their heads up and look alarmed. If self were to be truly cynical about it, which she isn’t, she might hug her purse closer to her body, just in case there is a point to this loud altercation.
Demonstrative fake quarrel aside, today self got to:
Really, if a lukewarm chocolate milkshake is the worst part of self’s day, she’s had a pretty good day.
Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.
All morning (because self is still reading Dexter Filkins), she has been trying to imagine what it would feel like to say good-bye to a friend, then to see, two hours later, on a small TV screen in a bar where one has gone to unwind, that friend’s car engulfed in smoke, all four doors flung open wide, as if someone had dragged something — a body, maybe? Not your friend, surely this is a joke — out.
The car is just sitting there, in the middle of the street, how strange.
There is no connection between the friend you spoke to that morning and the image of that banged up car. None whatsoever.
Because when you said good-bye that morning, his car was absolutely pristine. In good shape. Maybe in need of a wash, but there were no holes in the sides.
“It just happened,” someone in the bar says.
Oh, like, a few minutes ago? And you’re sitting in a bar. Staring.
That’s so-and-so’s car.
How could anyone recognize a car as belonging to a friend when it looks like that? Like a burned-out wreck of a car? Like it’s been through a demolition derby? Who drives a car like that? Why would anyone?
And besides, the TV. Your friends never appear on TV. They’re so small-time, they’re not even. Not the slightest bit news-worthy. Your friends are just people. What an invasion of privacy. Did someone get their permission to film them?