Archive for January, 2007

Nan Kempner

Saturday, January 27th, 2007

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Nan Kempner was a New York socialite famous for her vast collection of couture clothing and her delightful outspokenness, such as her  pronouncement to Vanity Fair, “I loathe fat people!”

I remember reading about her in W, which chronicled her luncheons and charity events and famous friends. Spy magazine used to publish unflattering pictures of her, with hilariously insulting captions.   She is said to be the inspiration for Tom Wolf’s descriptive term, “social x-ray.”   As I google her now, I see that she was a living rebuttal to the adage: “You can’t be too rich or too thin.”

The Metropolitan Museum is currently hosting an exhibit of Nan Kempner’s clothing collection, celebrating her “cool elegance” and “iconic style.” There’s that word “iconic” again!   Mrs. Kempner certainly knew how to spend money. She had 360 sweaters and 200 bikinis, along with couture gowns by all the usual designers of her era.   She had a 14 room apartment where she could store her clothes, and she was renowned for her ability to make a plain white shirt look chic.

God, what bullshit!   Could anyone get away with this now? Such waste and narcissism and obsessive consumerism just seems nuts, doesn’t it? However, if it turns out that this kind of shopping addiction is still considered some kind of accomplishment when I kick the bucket, I hope that my own lifetime of spending and hoarding will be honored with a similar tribute at the Met.

I would like people to wander around a huge exhibit of my red lipsticks, my cashmere sweaters, my glorious push-up bras, my boots,   my leather jackets, handbags, vintage costume jewelry, my kitsch religious crap, my sneakers, my gold bangles, and last but not least, my hair products.   The hair products alone probably represent close to $500 of wasted money.

Now I’ve gotten myself all excited about my exhibit! I’m going to have to start cataloguing everything. I can promise that I won’t be through before April, when the new leather jacket I just bought online is due to be shipped.

I kind of don’t like fat people either, now that I think about it.
  

Send Messages After You’re Dead!

Wednesday, January 24th, 2007

Deathswitch.com offers you a way to send email after you’re dead, and I for one like its suggestion to use this service to “have the last word in an argument.” I don’t really know if this website is a joke or not, but it’s kind of cool, in a sickening sort of way.

Less sickening, but also less cool, is this website all about words,  created by  a  Brit who is obviously a complete nutcase to be THIS obsessed with language. Still, there’s plenty of obscure information here. For example, I learned that the reason I can’t find out the origins of the phrase “Bob’s your uncle” is because no one knows. Thanks, Michael Quinion, for doing the legwork!

Meet My Handbag

Monday, January 22nd, 2007

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Going against my own distaste for enormous handbags, I have purchased one from Paul Smith, in an eye-popping shade of bright yellow. This photo doesn’t really capture its size and presence. It cost more than the Blue Book value of my car.

I am looking for absolution or compliments.

Design Your Own Boardgame, Sinners!

Sunday, January 21st, 2007

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Have you ever thought you had a great idea for a boardgame? Here’s your chance to get it made. This company will make a prototype for you, but you’ll have to fill out their form to get a price quote. They seem very open-minded, too!

Check out their game called Playas in  The Hood, and  this one for gays (or homophobes, I can’t figure out the target market.)

The possibilities are endless! Let me know your game ideas.

Golden Globes 2007 Exegesis

Tuesday, January 16th, 2007

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God, wasn’t it boring? At least there were some fashion atrocities to make it worthwhile. First, let’s review the show itself.

George Clooney opened with a Leo Dicaprio joke that a couple of presenters dutifully carried on. It might have been a great running joke if every single presenter followed through, but no dice.   Meryl Strreep was funny and regal, while Helen Mirren was earnest and regal. Clint Eastwood reminded us that we will all get old one day no matter how fabulous we once looked. Justin Timberlake reminded us that Prince is even shorter than he is. Warren Beatty was an old windbag whose endless blather allowed me to go and pee and even send an e-mail without missing anything. It’s nice to know that someone is actually even more egotistical than advertised.

Okay, on to fashion!   Renee Zelwegger wore a simpler than usual green frock (I’m guessing that she would use the word “frock” which is sickening in itself) and her puckered-lips expression was perfection. She has mastered the look of someone who just ate an extra sour lemon drop while getting a flue shot.

Emily Blunt wore a dress of such butt-enhancing splendor that you could actually see J-Lo’s husband whisper something in her ear, which I assume was something like “Baby, you better get that designer’s name.”     Jennifer Love Hewitt wore a ridiculous Halloween costume of some sort and carried her large exposed bosoms on a hidden tray. Sharon Stone wore a nothing-looking black slip-dress and looked like a   crack-whore.

Cameron Diaz wore a ruffled prom dress just to make us pity her even more. Her new nose set her face askew and added to the Sad Clown thing she has going on. However, Reese Witherspoon was a goddess in a sexy yellow sheath and a new hairdo with bangs. Her look said “Drop that Husband, Girl!”

Finally, Angelina. She was obliged to wear St John for contractual reasons, apparently. But the grey chiffon gown was pretty and elegant, and most important, it exposed her back and arms. Angie looks a little like a high school yearbook, with “Have a great summer!” written all over her.   She couldn’t be thinner or more   above-it-all. God bless her and Brad!  

  

A New Modest Proposal

Sunday, January 14th, 2007

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Has everyone heard about 9 year old Ashley, whose parents call her their Pillow Angel? Since Ashley was born with a rare condition resulting in profound mental retardation, her parents thought it would be nice if Ashley could always remain small. If she never grew up, they could continue to carry her around. She would be more mobile for family trips. Since she would never surpass the mental development of a baby, why not give her hormones that would stunt her growth? They began this treatment when she was six years old.

While they were at it, the parents thought it would be smart to remove her uterus, thus eliminating the nuisance of menstruation. And, since she didn’t need her breasts for anything, and they would only get in the way of her harness, they had her breast buds removed also. Voila! Ashley is now a desexualized mini-person, kind of a cuddly toy for her devoted (but practical!) parents.

Some people are really mad about this. Disabled people and their advocates are especially upset.

But wait! Wouldn’t it be nice if we could all keep our babies small and cute, and keep them on pillows like little lapdogs? Growing kids are so annoying! Before you know it, they’re too big to carry and then it’s hard to take them along on family trips. Sometimes they don’t even want to cuddle! Sometimes as parents, we wonder why the hell we had kids in the first place, if they’re going to get all big and go through puberty and then refuse to cuddle.

The Ashley Treatment, as it has been named to honor the recipient of these procedures, is an option whose time has come. Parents deserve the right to modify their children for the sake of convenience, and if the kids don’t even know what “inalienable rights” are, then how can you be violating them?

Ashley’s parents have a website here, and the Disability Rights and Education Fund state their position here. And you can read Jonathan Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” here.

Why Men Pretend to Like Jazz

Tuesday, January 9th, 2007

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If you’re a man, you’re probably on record as loving Miles Davis. You probably even call him “Miles.” You have a collection of Cds by Coltrane, Mingus, and Charlie Parker. You get all wistful when you discuss how great Chet Baker was.

If you’re a women, you’re really sick of this shit, but you’ve learned to tolerate it, in exchange for sex and security. But deep in your heart, you know he’s just pretending. He doesn’t really love jazz: no one could! It’s awful!

Men like to explain how you haven’t learned to “appreciate” jazz, and that’s why you don’t get it like he does. After all it’s so complex, and women tend to be simpletons, as least where music is concerned. When a woman hears Coltrane’s version of “My Favorite Things”,she is so ignorant that it just sounds like a horrible, excruciating racket. She will long for ear plugs, whereas the man who proudly put on “A Love Supreme” will adopt an expression of perfect rapture.

Men who are musicians are the worst, of course. They will be even more condescending than a civilian man when discussing the merits of jazz. It’s mathematical! You just don’t understand it! If only you weren’t a moron, you could grasp the genius of Thelonius Monk!

Jazz is a prop that affords men a posture of superiority. Nah nah, ladies, you might be gaining authority in other areas of life, but you don’t get jazz! Yet some women still buy into this fiction, like the people who declare that Jackson Pollack is as good a painter as Rembrandt. I think the time has come for women to let men off the hook, by revealing their fraud and allowing them to start making amends. Wait, I mean start listening to good music.

The tragedy is, for some men, that years of pretending have tricked them into believing they actually do like and enjoy jazz. Even when they’re alone, these men will listen to Dave Brubeck or study the history of Blue Note records. It’s kind of like the Stockholm Syndrome, but without the kidnappers.

Studies have suggested that men who pretend to love jazz have higher levels of testosterone than those who admit they either don’t like it or aren’t familiar with it. This holds true even for deaf men. In other words, the mere pretense has a masculinizing effect. Other studies have illustrated that when men talk about jazz, they tend to rate their own intelligence at least twenty points higher than when they talk about cars. Finally, recent research findings at both Oxford University and MIT imply that jazz is intolerable to all cultures where males are still allowed to beat women and set them on fire when honor demands it.

Don’t feel too badly about yourself if you are a man who “loves jazz.” Come out of the closet and celebrate your freedom to listen to punk, rhythm & blues, classic rock and death metal. You can still reads maps better than girls, if you need something to feel superior about.      

The Horror of Footwear Continues

Monday, January 8th, 2007

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These ankle boots by Robert Clergerie are alarming, but at $895 they are a real bargain. Their “artistic steel heel” manages to evoke a hospital room and a kitchen utensil, as well as some sort of icky prosthetic device.

The open toe looks comfy, though.  

What an Asshole

Sunday, January 7th, 2007

I’ve just read an essay by Chrisopher Hitchens called “Why Women Aren’t Funny.” Obviously, it was written to provoke rebuttal, but why does he even bother? An aging drunken bully, Chistopher Hitchens can always be counted upon to express an obnoxious opinion, maybe as an excuse to pout or lose his temper.

In his “women aren’t funny argument,” he postulates that men are funnier because:
1. Women need only be attractive, so they don’t have to develop a sense of humor.
2. Men’s bodies are funnier.
3. Women can’t really be funny because motherhood is such serious business.
4. Men are the oppressed group, and so more likely to rely on humor to get by.

Then, he acknowledges that some women are funny, but that’s because they are either “hefty, dikey or Jewish.” And THEN he explains as an aside that Jewish humor, based on angst and self-deprecation, is “almost masculine by definition.”

What a fucking asshole! Why do I take his bait? Because he’s a stupid old windbag who makes too much money and probably just needs a good ramming with my George Bush butt-plug (Christmas present, still in its presentation box.)

Most of the women in my life are hysterically funny, and I expect nothing less from a bright woman. We might not thinks fart humor is the apex of comedy, but I do have a videotape of an evangelist farting through his entire sermon. Maybe Hitchens has noticed that woman are less taken with bathroom humor, or stupid humor in general. I don’t believe that this proves his argument, though.

Could it be that Hitchens feels threatened by women who are aggressively funny?   He’s cool with Fran Lebowitz, whose humor is low-key and sardonic. But of course she’s a dikey Jew.

I wonder if he’s ever watched Saturday Night Live? He goes on to point out that women don’t welcome humor that’s aimed at their offspring, as though that makes us bad sports, not fit to be members of the Funny Club. Do fathers enjoy jokes at the expense of their children?   Maybe Christopher’s buddies do. When they’re not busy   hating women and worrying about their funnier bodies.

At least when a woman writes an essay like Why Men Pretend to Like Jazz, for example, she can back it up with scientific fact!
  
  

Fashion Quiz #1

Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007

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Here is an easy fashion quiz. There is one trick question but I know you’ll get that one right! Scroll down for the answers.
1. Imitation of Christ is a brand started by which ugly actress:
a. Sandra Bullock
b. Jennifer Love Hewitt
c. Chloe Sevigny

2. Tom Ford’s new fragrance is called:
a. Black Narcissis
b. Black Orchid
c. I’m Gay

3. McQ is to Alexander McQueen as Miu Miu is to:
a. Gucci
b. Prada
c. D&G

4. H&M recently introduced a line designed by this duo:
a. Dolce & Gabbana
b. Victor & Rolf
c. Sigfried & Roy

5. Madonna’s line for H&M
a. Sold out
b. Arrives in February
c. Tanked

6. Marc Jacobs quilted handbags are:
a. a ripoff of Chanel
b. a ripoff of Hermes
c. a ripoff of Louis Vuitton

7. Stalin was to Russia as ___ is to Vogue
a. Bonnie Fuller
b. Winnie Mandela
c. Anna Wintour

8. Juicy Couture won’t go away because:
a. people are stupid
b. people want to look like each other
c. there is no god

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

answers: 1-c,   2-b, 3-b, 4-b, 5-c (ha ha!), 6-a, 7-c, 8-a,b,and c