Understand/Surrender

What I want

is to wear many colors

is to understand and surrender to the kind and horrifying nature of a lifestyle based on plastic

is to regain or maybe just gain a moment of true focus

is the capacity to focus on something with a sufficient proportion of the atoms and molecules that constitute my body so that it qualifies as a moment of true focus for the first time in 38 years

is to moisturize when I remember to moisturize

is to recycle when I remember to recycle

is to understand and surrender to those fuck-it moments when I get wet half on purpose

is to relax into rewinding tentwentythirty seconds of whatever thing I’m watching on Netflix because I was paying attention to something else

is to catch myself before swearing in front of children, maybe

this is my plan for what’s left of the summer.

Suburpia 

Hey, oh hi, HI, how are you

Good? Good. 

I’ve moved. I live in Denmark now. I moved here because I got a job writing ads for a big global superbrand. It’s really fun. 

I live in a small city in Jutland, the chunky bit of Denmark. There’s a beach. On hot summer days you can dip your feet in the North Sea. 

I take the bus to work. The bus drives past fields with cows and horses and little houses, and little lakes with ducks, and a big international airport with airplanes. 

Aarhus is a 45-minute train ride away.

It’s nice. 

I listen to audiobooks and podcasts because I get carsick if I try to read a paper book on the bus.

This morning I tried on the Goopfellas podcast, which is a spinoff of Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop but for men

In the first 20 seconds: 

Male host #1: Hey man, do you do yoga?

Male host #2: I do bro-ga. 

I switched it off and devoted the rest of my commute to wondering what it must be like to be a person who says things like that. 

Bro-ga.

Jesus.

Horrible Poem No. 2 — The Premium Economy Haiku

Turbulence at lunchtime.

Shrimp curry everywhere.

Centrifugal force.

A physical and mental picture of Catherine Deneuve crushed by the weight of another inconsequential award

deneuve

Thank you, thank you very much. Thank you. So kind. Thank you.

 Oh là là, look at them clap

Thank you.

My God stop clapping

You know, the first time… thank you… the first time I came to Prague, I was perhaps a young woman, and I was captivated by the beauty of your city. By the buildings, and the cobbled streets, but mostly by the spirit of art, and creativity, which I could see everywhere in Prague, even as a young actress

Ah, putain, que c’est lourd! What is this merde made of, osmium? Osmium has twice the density of lead, can you believe it. Where did I read that. Jesus fucking Christ. And so big. It’s going in the garage

and to be now back in Prague today, as perhaps not so young a woman, heh heh… thank you… thank you… I love you too… to be back here today with all of you, receiving this award, is just such an incredible honor

but I don’t have a garage. I live in the Rive Gauche. I should have a garage, though, just so I’d have somewhere to put all this ferraille, this jonque

and to all of you here at the Prague International Film Festival, the judges and the organizers and the distinguished audience, I just want to say thank you, thank you for the work that you all do, and the part each of you play in bringing out the imagination that we all carry within us and giving it a platform to thrive and play

mais qu’est que c’est, even? It’s an abstract angel. It’s a turd with wings. There isn’t one single living room on the planet where this would look good

because cinema is, I think, in many ways, mankind’s highest expression of its desire to play, and create, and narrate, and even reshape our reality

maybe I can sell it. I wonder how much I could get for it at Les Puces

and there’s nothing more human than the impulse to reshape the world in which we live in, and make it better, and more beautiful, and if we may be so bold, even more interesting than it already appears to us

or eBay. But does the seller have to arrange the shipping, or the buyer? Where am I supposed to find a box? Fuck this, I’m not dealing with the French post office. I think I’ll leave it in the bathroom here and pretend I forgot it

and I will finish now, because I know you are all very looking forward to seeing tonight’s movie, which is a beautiful masterpiece by the great Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, and it’s a perfect example of cinema giving a platform to people to inspire others through art

pull yourself together. After cet petit faux pas about that silly Hollywood harassment business you can’t bloody afford another misstep so don’t fuck this up

and so I just want to say thank you again, from the bottom of my soul, for this beautiful award which I will cherish forever. Thank you. Thank you.

Fuck. My arms. Fuck fuck fuck fuckfuckfuckfuck

Me, at your place, at 2:30 am, on my 17th glass of wine:

“Blah blah blah blah blah politics blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah”

You, physically dying to go to sleep.

Burshuá


I forget how tiny newborns are, tiny human burger patties that cry and make faces. On Monday I went to see B at the hospital. She’s had twins. The Foxes have gone from two to three, to five, virtually overnight.

I was starving afterwards and I made our way back to the city center, ate french fries by Jiriho z Poděbrad, and went to sleep in the same nearly unbearable funk I’ve been in since last Saturday.

Yesterday MPDB wrote from across the sea and said let’s drop everything, let’s run away for a while, let’s go to Morocco.

Lena, who is an actress and who is pregnant with her second child, and in whose Chelsea apartment I stayed one December while visiting New York, sent me a nod, said she understood. About the blue hair thing. And that made it — well, not OK exactly, but better.

Leevi, who went to the same high school I went to except the one in India instead of mine in Norway, and who sat with me during our first lecture ever at the London School of Economics, wrote to say he quit his job and is now training as a massage therapist.

We’re on our first divorces, second children, third big career lurches. Maybe because we want to want to have blue hair. We’re wearing someone else’s clothes at a runway show, and they’re fitted with temporary pins and we can’t wait to get backstage and get back in our sweatpants

nothing quite fits

it’s couture, but it doesn’t fit

Last night Borek and I went to the Czech Grammys, the Ceny Anděl, in Karlin. I wore all black and put on yellow shoes, and tried not to do anything stupid on live television again. We sat between a Czechoslovak Idol winner and an organizer who looked like she wanted to vomit all over me whenever we made eye contact.

That’s the kind of first impression I make.

Or maybe it’s a Prague thing. It’s not like Toronto, which wants to flirt with you at every turn. I’ve never quite found my sea legs in coastless Prague. It’s a different culture, I tell myself, and you have to adapt to being nearly puked on at landmark contemporary cultural events out of the disgust you provoke, because they sure as hell aren’t going to adapt to you and your yellow shoes and your intrusive Mediterranean hellos and good mornings.

So I smile and clap and drink a fourth glass of wine, and think about how everything in my life is wonderful, and I want to torch it all like Nero did to Rome, and play with the ashes.

My boyfriend has blue hair now

It’s a coloring wax that comes from a pot he had sent from Japan. The English instructions are a mess, but it’s hair wax. You finger, you rub, you rub. And so now my boyfriend has blue hair.

He washes the blue off in the shower before going to bed so he won’t stain the pillows, because he’s sensible and practical (even when he rubs blue wax from Japan on his hair).

But before that he sits at the kitchen table, typing on his laptop, and I look at him and think how odd.

I used to fry my hair with colorants and I had blue hair for fifteen minutes, a million years ago, when I was a mess in London and didn’t know what to do with myself.

And then that stopped. I wanted to fit in so that I could afford to be free eventually, and instead, the half of me that craved conventionality toppled over the half that needed to do whatever the fuck I wanted and wear the consequences on my chest like a military medal. And I don’t know how to calibrate it now, any more than I know how to desalt soup.

Everything feels too tidy, I’m too punctual. I wanted to be reliable in order to hold on to what I needed and now I am, but look what’s happened.

I want things, still.

I want to have an odious, impractical little car with no heating in the winter, something like a Fiat 127, absurd like the iron spiral staircase in my loft which starts and ends inches away from a frosted glass wall. A wall someone is bound to smash through sooner or later —  because sooner or later people slip on staircases.

I want to stop pushing text around a google doc like it’s an uneaten piece of cauliflower on a plate.

I want to rewind life and do it exactly the same way, but better.

I want to cry for a reason again.

I want to want to have blue hair.

You know what I mean?