Saturday, November 29, 2008

Having given thanks

For our European friends, this is the Thanksgiving weekend, my favourite American holiday. Unlike festivals which have been commercialized ( you know the drill: Christmas, New Year's, Valentine's Day, Mothers' Day, Fathers' Day... summer), Thanksgiving remains about family and friends, about cooking rather than buying, although the day after (Black Friday as it's called) things take a turn in the more natural commercial direction and Americans being their Christmas shopping. (My father would be proud of that sentence, though not my English teacher: he likes them long and multi-claused.)

In any case, I usually travel but this year I had some friends from the Flugelbinder Academy visiting me here in Boston, so I joined them at a local Thanksgiving dinner. Wine was had, turkey eaten (by others - I'm a vegetarian), pie consumed, children entertained.

Now they've all gone home, and I'm here watching Breakfast at Tiffany's and wondering what to do next. I must learn how to answer that question in here in Boston.


Autumn postcards from New York

Monday, November 24, 2008

Love (material and spiritual), continued*

I'm not really an espeically materialistic person. I do love beautiful things, but can afford only a few them. But having moving recently (twice!), and had the chance to refurnish my apartments, I have come to realize that a well designed object, by its very materiality can become something that evokes pleasure, admiration, and even affection. Though perhaps not spiritual per se, a beautiful everyday object helps to evoke a sense of calm in me.

Here are two quick snaps of my Boston apartment. At the back is my table, designed by Gudme in period unknown (1950s is plausible). Not a super-famous designer, a clean expression of the circle in the square. More importantly it plays nicely with my chairs. These are Wegner 3-legged dining chairs. When pushed in, they tuck beautifully under the table. But somehow these chairs remind me of a Picasso goat (no accident that Wegner designed a bull chair with direct inspiration from Picasso).

I have come to love this sofa. It's a George Nelson daybed. They are still made, but none of the new ones have the wonderful floating arm on the left. The armrest tilts to become a headrest in case you're ready for a nap. And behind my bookcases. I had to organize the entire move and apartment around finding place for 80 feet (25 meters) of books. I know people who have more, but I don't know how they manage.

But there is something wonderful in possessing books. Of course the pleasure is not as deep as reading per se, but the physical relationship is different. You look at them, they stare back at you. The spines, the colors, the sizes, the lovely titles that sparkle back at you.

End to my materialistic outburst (for today).



* This post was inspired by a picture of PH's bookcase over on her blog.

P.S. The longer I look at this, the more I think this picture is revealing altogether too much about me! The coffee table is also be Wegner, the canvas chair and footstool are Nii's NY chair.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Comments enabled!

My faithful reader, that cool cat Mia, pointed out that I had inadvertently disabled anonymous comments. They're back!

Mia also thought that Carla Bruni wasn't worthy of my admiration... I suppose I agree. But it's just that Italy and France have Carla Bruni but all we have here in America is Brittney Spears. Now if Brittney were to marry Bill Clinton, now that would be a story...



Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Shocking confessions! I'm in love with the Queen... and Carla Bruni... (gasp)

Immediately exploiting the liberty of my new home, let me start off with some shocking confessions: I'm in love with the Queen, QE2 (oops I mean E2R), the Queen of England no less, and Carla Bruni. All right then, not in love, but in deep admiration. It's true my parents would disown me, and my brother (yes, I do have one of those... Hello! Are you reading?) would roundly criticize me for this admiration of the scion of the family that thrice colonized me. But...

I was watching The Monarchy on PBS (America's version of the Beeb...) and there was this behind the scenes view of how the Queen handles state visits. And you have to say, she is one cool customer. With that same sense of self-depreciating humor that I found in all the British girls I met, and tried to match (like a dalmation tries to match with Zebras, if that image makes any sense...) How I loved making fun of myself, in that off-hand kind of way, and what do you know? Even the Queen does it!

And CB1, Carla Bruni the 1st. I watched her interviewed on the The Today Show whilst I was sweating it out (no, it was not a pretty sight) on the Elliptical Trainer this morning at 7. There she was, being asked all the usual, stupid fluffy questions, but simultaneously not taking herself or her questioner too seriously (is it possible Britain and France have something in common, other than the love of Bordeaux?) Of course, she said, I used to say those things, just to make the interviews more entertaining. And who else other than a literal-minded American journalist wouldn't get it?

OK -- enough confessions for one day (more some other day -- promise!)


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Moving in

Old friends welcome back! New friends welcome! This is the new home of Bombay Beauty. It will take some time to get settled in... You know, put up some curtains, paint the walls, get some pictures up, but expect to hear more soon and often!



Friday, November 7, 2008

Banskied again (Warning! Disturbing content)

I've been Banskied again. This time it was knowingly though. Bansky came to town, but unlike London he probably deduced that local authorities wouldn't take too kindly to his art on the walls of the city (unlike gang graffiti which they don't seem to mind at all). So instead he took over a store front on Seventh Avenue near Houston, the Village Pet Store and Charcoal Grill.

I would like to offer my usual speculations on whether this was art, ahhhrt, fun, or just bizzare, but don't feel quite up to. But take a look and decide for yourself.

There were bales of Hay out front that you can't see here:

Bansky loves his CCTV's so much that he brought a flock of them with him to NY:

Never did like gumballs myself. This probably wasn't my concern though:

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