Jun 19, 2014

Here is my new updated Top 8 Rooting Interest List

We are one week in to the tournament and Spain, the defending champions are already gone, so naturally they have come off my list.  

1. USMNT
2. Costa Rica
3. Ghana
4. Italy
5. CH
6. Holland
7. France*
8. Chile

*France are on Official Supporter Probation.  As long as they continue as they are doing they will move up this list.  I expect once they break from their group the probation will be lifted.  

The bottom four are the same, except there were some changes in the alignment:

29. Mexico
30. Belgium
31. England
32. Portugal

Of the Top 8, Ghana is the most likely to be eliminated, and I suspect Germany will take their place in a lower spot by this time next week.  

By July 2, I suspect my list should look something like this (there will only be eight teams left in the tournament):  

1. Germany
2. Italy
3. France
4. Holland
5. Colombia
6. Brazil
7. Argentina
8. Belgium

************

Meanwhile, as for Ingerland, they are sincerely hoping they are not going to be singing this tonight!











Happy World Cup everyone!
Love you all, 
Ciao!

Jun 16, 2014

I am going to be a nervous wreck

All day long, a sweaty smelly husk of a human by the time five PM PDT rolls around today.

Unless the USMNT just completely rolls over and gets waxed today by the Black Stars, which is definitely a legitimate possibility, and then I will be less exhausted husk and more very tired rationalizing philosophizing Alibi Ike.  

The key for the USA today is the same as it always for them in the World Cup.  They can not concede early goals in these matches.  For whatever reason, and despite always having World Class goaltending, the USA's biggest weakness has always been conceding early goals in the World Cup.  Much of that has to do with the fact that the US just has not been very good at producing and nurturing top flight defenders, and there probably is a mental thing/nerve sort of thing happening, as well.

I would like to think that coach, Jurgen Klinsmann, has helped the USA over that jitters thing, but we will not know until about twenty minutes in to today's contest with Ghana.

I am just going to have to see the games.  The USA could very easily look like Honduras did yesterday, rack up a bunch of cards, have no attacking play whatsoever, and get seriously humiliated in this tournament.  

Or, they could score some goals, get some lucky breaks, and make it to the Round of 16, or further.

One thing I can guarantee is that will not get any benefit of the doubt when it comes to difficult or crucial refereeing decisions.  FIFA hates the USA, and always will, most likely.  But I do not want to be like a whinging England supporter.  It is never England's fault when they lose.  They are always robbed of greater glory.  

So, I accept the difficult situations, and I temper my expectations, and ultimately resign myself to answering the question:  Am I proud of them? Did they acquit themselves in an entertaining classy way? 

Today is the day.  We will find out.






















-- Ardent

Jun 15, 2014

Fact is, manners and politeness these days, is practically done.





But not with me, or at my house.  And, that is because of both my parents, especially my father.  Even if I acted out or rebelled against him as a teen, all those lessons on manners really did sink in, and I am still a loyal polite soldier in a world where lots of folks do not seem to know or care any more.


So, here's to William Andrew Spitler.  Happy Father's Day to a supreme awesome Dad.  And, here is a little Motown for you, too!






Love you, Bud! We will call you today from Renee's folks house.















Michael

Jun 12, 2014

Here are the eight nations I will be cheering hardest for in the 2014 World Cup:

1. USA
2. The Cantons of Helvetica (Switzerland)
3. Spain
4. Honduras
5. Costa Rica
6. Holland
7. Ghana
8. Ecuador

The list is descending order, thus, if No 1 (USA) met No 2 (CH) in a match, I would support the USA.  I will support the USA against all possible opponents, and there is only one team that Switzerland could play wherein I would not support them, the USA.  

I like Switzerland because my parents used to live in Basel, and my father still does much of the year; and because I have a weird softness for that bizarre proud country.

I like Spain because their players are beautiful, they play a beautiful brand of football with a goofy nickname -- tika taka -- and they always seem to exude class on and off the pitch.

I like Honduras and Costa Rica because they are tiny nations that seriously over-perform and get very little respect.  

Go La Bicolor!


I like Holland for their gorgeous uniforms, and their exciting lively brand of football (even though lately they have become quite goonish), and the way they always have their fans pull marketing stunts in the crowd to piss off their opposition.

Ghana is my favorite African nation.  They know how to win, and they are the USA's nemesis.

Ecuador is my favorite Central or South American nation because they are a very tiny nation, too, and get very little respect.

This list will have to change as the tournament progresses, and it will, and I will update it over the next month.  It has to change because as even a footy novice will notice, very few of those teams in my Top 8 have any legitimate chance to make it deep in to the tournament.  Only Spain and Holland from my list would count as serious contenders.  Ghana would be a dark horse.  If I had to make a Top 8 of simply legitimate sides, it would look like this:

1. Spain
2. Brazil
3. Ghana
4. Germany
5. Uruguay
6. France
7. Italy
8. Argentina

France is a toughie.  Normally they would be in my opening Top 8, but they kind of broke my heart at the last World Cup, with all their prima donna behavior, and mutiny.  If they are on their form, and keep it classy, they could move up my list very quickly.  

Now, there is a bottom of the list, as well.  These are the four nations I like the least, and will be rooting against.  

29.  Belgium
30. Mexico
31. (tie) England
              Portugal

I can not explain it fully, but I can not stand Belgium.  Mexico are the USA's mortal enemy, and if England and Portugal met in this year's World Cup, I would hope for a power outage.  I hate both of them so much.  Portugal for their crappy sportsmanship, and CR7; and England because of their smug nasty homer xenophobic fans.  

World Cup starts today! Go Croatia!







Ciao!
Ardent
















Amazing video! Thank you, John Oliver.





John Oliver really got it right last Sunday.  It is amazing how he did this in a hilarious way right after I had said all of the same things about FIFA to the Wife the day earlier.

I think I like the French(?) guy best, talking about beer.



World Cup so wonderful.  FIFA so flipping evil.









AH










Jun 9, 2014

The Sunday NYT Magazine

Had a brilliant World Cup preview inside.  It included the excellent profile of the USMNT's coach, Jurgen Klinsmann; had fun graphic Spy Magazine-like charts (they are picking Uruguay to win -- not a bad choice); an article on the new music from Brazil; and, with Lionel Messi on the cover, naturally, an article on why Messi is not loved in Argentina.

Re Messi:  We have a supremely sweet Argentine dairy delivery driver at our store, and he has already explained to me why Messi, the greatest footballer on the planet right now, is not loved by his home nation.  

The argument is thus:  Messi has not performed well in the World Cup Finals tournaments that he has been in, and that is true.  Messi also went to Spain at a very early age, and did not play in the Argentine professional leagues.  Messi also plays for Barcelona FC, one of the best club teams in the world, and a team that is essentially an international all-star team.  So despite Messi absolutely shattering previous Club football goal-scoring records the past few years, Argentines continue to shrug their shoulders.  Why?

Because of Maradona.  Diego Maradona is arguably the greatest footballer of the Twentieth Century.  He is also from Argentina, and he grew up in much worse circumstances than did Messi. The whole slums v suburbs argument again.  

And, let us look at Maradona's CV:  Maradona is one of the greatest World Cup players ever, who has scored both of the most talked about and celebrated goals in World Cup history.  In the same game! (Poor Ingerland.) Sure, one of them might have been illegal, but it still has the coolest nickname:  The Hand of God.  (There was nothing illegal about the other goal, as Maradona mercilessly shredded the entire England side, essentially one-on-eleven, and calmly slotted the ball in the back of the net.) Maradona won that World Cup as captain, and led the Argentines to a second place finish four years later, despite playing with an injured ankle.  Maradona's Club CV includes a decent sized stint with an Argentine club, a trip, also, to Barcelona, where he performed very well even though he and the management were not friendly.  Then, Maradona was sold to Napoli in the Italian Serie A.  Napoli was not a team of all-stars to say the least.  Moreover, no Club team from Southern Italy had ever won the league title, period.  Well, that changed. Maradona, nearly by himself, lifted that Napoli side to becoming one of the best teams on the continent.

Of course, there is the whole back page of Maradona's resume, too.  That is the page that talks about the suspensions, the drug abuse, the steroids, etc, ... (Messi himself took steroids at a young age due to a growth hormone disorder.) 

So, even with Maradona's complicated and tumultuous life off the pitch, he will always be revered over Messi in Argentina, and to me, personally.

I was fortunate enough to watch the Hand of God and the other goal v England in 1986.  At home, on teevee, in Austim, Texas; and I have always adored difficult and feisty artists and athletes. Messi may be one of the greatest footballers I have ever seen, but he is no Maradona.  I stand with the other Argentines, like that delivery guy.  













World Cup in four days!












Ciao, Ardent

Jun 4, 2014

From a letter a young Sergei Diaghilev wrote to his beloved stepmother:

Sergei Diaghilev




"As for myself ... I am first a great charlatan, although one with great flair; second, I am a great charmer; third, I've a great nerve; fourth, I'm a man with a great deal of logic and few principles; and fifth, I think I lack talent; but if you like I think I've found my real calling -- patronage of the arts."









Note:  I got this wonderful quote from Lisa Chaney's splendid biography of Coco Chanel, Chanel An Intimate Life


























Ardent Henry

Jun 3, 2014

Landon Donovan

Is the greatest soccer player the United States has ever produced, and yet, unlike his friend and teammate, DaMarcus Beasley, Donovan will not be playing in his fourth FIFA World Cup Finals.

Donovan's World Cup CV is astounding, as well.  It is not as if he was just coasting through his nation's most important matches.  In fact, he has scored more goals in the World Cup Finals than some of the more illustrious strikers from other nations, including Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo.

But, there has always been a nagging sense that as great as Donovan was, that he still could have been even better.  That he could have been, in addition to being the greatest US soccer player ever, he might have been one of the world's best footballers, period.

If that is the case, then what was it that held him down? I believe it is the same thing that is keeping him out of the 2014 World Cup Finals:  Attitude.

Donovan has always carried with him an attitude that suggests he is cocky, or a bit of a diva. Lots of the world's greatest athletes have attitudes like that.  Many argue it may be essential to reaching elite achievement in sport, or art, or business, or life.

The first real instance of it possibly impairing Donovan's career advancement, though, came when he was playing in Germany in the Bundesliga.  He was young, and had already scored goals in the World Cup, and, even by then, was probably considered one of the greatest US-born footballer's ever.

He did not play well in Germany.  He sulked and moaned and bitched about probably everything in the entire experience of big-time European Club Football.

Unfortunately for him, the current USMNT coach, Jurgen Klinsmann, was working in the Bundesliga at the time, and was, I am sure, privy to every single Donovan story coming out of Leverkusen.

But it gets worse.  Right on the eve of the USMNT's 2014 World Cup Qualifying campaign, Donovan told Klinsmann that he was burned out and needed some time off.  Even if it is not technically the case, that attitude smacks of someone who does not want to rehearse, and expects to be the star when the lights go on.

Klinsmann was not impressed.  By the time Donovan was ready to return to the national side, the US were cruising through the Hex, and well on their way to Brazil.  Klinsmann, in a sense, demoted Donovan by forcing him to play in the Gold Cup, with essentially the US B-team.  Donovan did as he was told, and was the star of the tournament, which the US won.

It was not enough.  Klinsmann left Donovan off the team for Brazil.  Cue hue and cry!

The last time the media called for Klinsmann's head the USMNT ran off twelve wins in a row, so I am keen to give Klinsmann the benefit of the doubt, even though I bloody well know that the United States will not win this World Cup Finals, or possibly even make it out of their brutal group.

Klinsmann has a plan for the future that sees the USMNT as legitimate World Cup contenders in 2018 and 2022.  Contenders in the sense that they could reach the Semis, the Finals, or win the whole damn thing.  I am not kidding.

As much as I wish Landon Donovan was in Brazil, I understand why he is not, and I think it was the right decision by Klinsmann.  Even if the USMNT are unable to break from their group this month, I still think Klinsmann made the right call.

I have always loved difficult or feisty artists and athletes, and I will always love Landon Donovan, and all his brilliant goals, and the way he got under the skin of every Mexican El Tri supporter.  Despite the uneasy small feeling that he could have even been better, I consider myself lucky to have been able to witness the greatest footballer from the United States ever.

My favorite Donovan goal? As much as I love his dagger in El Tri's heart in 2002, I have to go with his goal against Slovenia in 2006.  When it looked as if the World Cup was slipping away from the US he point blank scored one on one with a laser of a top shelf strike that literally had the goalkeeper going backwards in a pathetic effort to stop it.  After the goal, as Donovan was being congratulated by his teammates, Donovan seemed to shrug them off, and kept pointing to his head, yelling at the entire team, as if to say, "What the fuck? Where are you guys? Use your head! Am the only guy playing here?"












Ciao!
Nine days to World Cup!










Ardent

May 30, 2014

fauxluxe Complete 2014 World Cup Preview

No burying the lede, no personal stories, just a complete breakdown of how I see the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil play out.  Here we go.


GROUP A

Brazil 3W 0D 0L 9pts
Mexico 1W 1D 1L 4pts
Croatia 0W 2D 1L 2pts
Cameroon 0W 1D 2L 1pt

Brazil should breeze through this group despite all the travel they have in store for them.  Only one other team will rack up more air miles during the tournament, the United States.  The crucial match that will be the difference for Mexico advancing will be on Friday, 13 June, where I see them beating Cameroon two to one.  That means Mexico would only need a draw against Croatia ten days later.  I think they can handle that.  

GROUP B

Spain 3W 0D 0L 9pts
Netherlands 2W 0D 1L 6pts
Chile 1W 0D 2L 3pts
Australia 0W 0D 3L 0pts

One of the most exciting games of the group stage will happen on the second day of the tournament, as Spain and the Netherlands have a rematch of the 2010 World Cup Final.  I believe Spain will win a thrilling three to two victory that day.  Lots of folks are high on Chile right now, but I am not convinced.  I have the Netherlands beating Chile two to one on Monday, 23 June.  

GROUP C

Columbia 2W 1D 0L 7pts
Greece 2W 1D 0L 7pts
Japan 1W 0D 2L 3pts
Ivory Coast 0W 0D 3L 0pts

I expect Columbia will win the group on goal difference.  Columbia should be able to score more goals against Japan and/or the Ivory Coast than Greece can.  Ivory Coast have a terrible reputation for being crap in the big tournaments.  I do not see that changing here.  Greece will play their normal defensive minded boring football, and their one-nil victory over Japan on Thursday, 19 June will see them through to the Round of Sixteen.

GROUP D

Uruguay 1W 2D 0L 5pts
Italy 0W 3D 0L 3pts
England 0W 3D 0L 3pts
Costa Rica 0W 2D 1L 2pts

This is a brutal group, and I really feel for the Ticos.  I think Italy will advance on the strength of scoring more goals than England, even though I do not see a whole lot of goals being scored in this group, period.  Ingerland will sack their manager for sure, and the British press will be merciless.  Uruguay beating Costa Rica two-nil on Saturday, 14 June will be the match that separates Uruguay from the rest of the group.  

GROUP E

Ecuador 2W 1D 0L 7pts
Switzerland 0W 3D 0L 3pts
France 0W 2D 1L 2pts
Honduras 0W 2D 1L 2pts

This should be the most boring group in the whole tournament.  There will not be a lot of goals scored, and it will come down to Wednesday, 25 June when France and Honduras will  be sent packing.  Honduras will manage a nil-nil draw against my beloved boring Switzerland, but Ecuador will beat France one-nil.  The difference for Switzerland over France is the Swiss will have been able to draw one all v Ecuador ten days earlier.  

GROUP F

Argentina 3W 0D 0L 9pts
Nigeria 1W 1D 1L 4pts
Bosnia and Herzegovina 0W 2D 1L 2pts
Iran 0W 1D 2L 1pt

If our new Pope really did pray for an easy group for Argentina then he really did get his wish. This group will be a cakewalk for Messi et al, and they should win all three games.  The difference for Nigeria will be that they can beat Iran, while Bosnia only manage a draw v Iran on Wednesday, 25 June.  

GROUP G

Germany 2W 1D 0L 7pts
USA 1W 2D 0L 5pts
Portugal 1W 0D 2L 3pts
Ghana 0W 1D 2L 1pt

The USA will draw v Ghana one all; beat Portugal three-two again; and then kick the ball around the park with Germany on Thursday, 26 June, earning a draw, whilst Portugal maliciously destroy Ghana four-nil.  It will not matter, though.  Portugal will flame out of a major tournament once again, even with Ronaldo.  

GROUP H

Belgium 1W 2D 0L 5pts
Russia 0W 3D 0L 3pts
Algeria 0W 3D 0L 3pts
South Korea 0W 2D 1L

Belgium will advance on the strength of being the only team in this extremely boring group to win a match, (one-nil over South Korea on Thursday, 26 June).  Russia will score more goals than Algeria, and break through because of that.  Lots of folks really fancy this Belgian side, and on paper they do look impressive, but I am skeptical.  


ROUND OF SIXTEEN

SATURDAY, 28 JUNE

Brazil 3-2 Netherlands
Columbia 0-1 Italy

The Brazil Holland match will be the most exciting game of the 2014 World Cup.  Unfortunately, right after that, Italy will bore Columbia to death, and win yet another one-nil Azzurri Special.


SUNDAY, 29 JUNE

Spain 2-0 Mexico
Uruguay 0-0 (4-2 PKs) Greece 

Spain will tiki taka Mexico senseless, and Uruguay and Greece will put everyone to sleep, until Los Charrúas win on PKs.


MONDAY, 30 JUNE

Ecuador 2-1 Nigeria
Germany 3-1 Russia

This will be a fun day for football, with loads of goals scored, and one extremely tight, and competitive matchup that could also go in to Extra Time or PKs.  


TUESDAY, 1 JULY

Argentina 2-0 Switzerland
Belgium 0-2 USA

I told you I did not think Belgium were for real.  Plus, European teams do not do well away from their continent.  (The exceptions are Germany, they are always good; Italy, they either win it all or suck; and Spain, who are becoming the new version of Germany.) And, Argentina will have no problems with the Cantons of Helvetica.


QUARTERFINALS


FRIDAY, 4 JULY

Brazil 0-0 (4-3 PKs) Italy
Ecuador 0-1 Germany

Germany will reach yet another semifinal, and Brazil will break Italy's heart again, on PKs.


SATURDAY, 5 JULY

Spain 1-0 Uruguay
Argentina 2-1 USA

The party ends for the USMNT, but they acquit themselves well, and are not a complete pushover for Argentina.  Meanwhile, Spain marches on, and eliminate one of my favorite sides, the gutsy, and tough Uruguayans.


SEMIFINALS



TUESDAY, 8 JULY

Brazil 2-0 Germany

WEDNESDAY, 9 JULY

Argentina 1-3 Spain

Yup, I am picking a Spain Brazil final.  Pretty boring, hunh? But, that is how I see it.


THIRD PLACE GAME


SATURDAY, 12 JULY

Argentina 1-2 Germany


FINAL


SUNDAY, 13 JULY

Brazil 0-2 Spain

I am going with Spain to win their second straight World Cup, and their third straight Major Tournament.  Perhaps a safe choice, and perhaps not.  We will see.  I can not wait!













Mwah, ... 



May 14, 2014

May 13, 2014

Sometimes you find beautiful wisdom

In the most unassuming places.

I was watching Championship Sunday over a whole host of networks of the NBC family a couple of days ago.  It was the last day of the Barclay's Premier League, so all twenty teams were playing ten games, all at the same time, all televised on ten different channels, including Bravo and E!.

Commentator Lee Dixon when he played for The Arse


After flipping around a fair bit, I decided to settle in with the Man City game against West Ham United, as it appeared that Man City's result would deliver them their second EPL title in three years.

With about twenty minutes to go, color commentator Lee Dixon started speaking about a talented player for West Ham, who was approaching the beginning of the end of his career, and had had a disappointing season for the Hammers, and had not had a particularly good day on the pitch.

Dixon started by saying that this player had done nothing especially memorable today, as he was substituted for, but then Dixon said something like this (I am paraphrasing from memory):  "And, that is really what is important, especially towards the end of your career.  It does not always have to be goals, but leave the fans with a fond memory of something you did today.  I do not mean to be picking on [the said player], but a football career is fleeting.  It is important that you take advantage of every single opportunity in front of you while you have the chance.  I am not talking about trophies and titles.  It is important that you do something memorable every chance you get, and send the fans home talking to themselves, 'Do you remember when he did that last Saturday?' "

I told the Wife about this right after he said it.  She was gobsmacked, as well.  She said, "That is just great advice for life."

Arlo White (named after the Oklahoma singer Arlo Guthrie) and Lee Dixon were the top commentating team for NBC's sterling coverage of the Premier League this season.  I hope they keep them together, and I can not wait for more from them next season.





Mwah, ... 

May 12, 2014

London

I was fully expecting to see Lily Allen Sheezus hand bills plastered all over London while I was there.  That was not the case.  (btw, Sheezus entered at No 1 in the UK album charts.  Sweet!)

But, I saw two wonderful hand bills all over the London Underground:



That is Lesley Sharp and Kate O'Flynn, starring in A Taste of Honey, which was its author, Shelagh Delaney's first play ever.  She was twenty years old.

I fell in love with Lesley Sharp aboot twenty years ago, when she was in Mike Leigh's masterpiece of a film, Naked.  I fell in love with Ms O'Flynn about five years ago when she was in Mike Leigh's masterpiece of a film, Happy-Go-Lucky.

Moreover, I knew about A Taste of Honey before I had even seen the script, thanks to The Beatles, and The Smiths.  The Beatles covered the song from the film version, and Morrissey referenced the play in a song, and also made Ms Delaney (a Mancunian) a cover star for their Louder Than Bombs double lp.


I did not catch on to those facts until I actually read the script, and did some scene work for a graduate student playwright.  It was some of the best work I ever did.  Stephanie Swenson played the Kate O'Flynn role.  I can not remember the name of the woman who played Lesley Sharp's part, and I played O"Flynn's sort of boyfriend.  We did it in untutored Mancunian accents (and did it quite well!) I just channeled Paul McCartney crossed with Ringo, and even though Stephanie and I were crushed back stage after finishing, thinking we had done an epic fail, it was one of our finest performances.  I got a number of other off-Main Stage roles from writers and directors just on the strength of that performance.

Also saw this on the Tube walls:



Well, I love both of these guys.  A lot.  And, apparently this show has won a bunch of awards, but Jeeves and Wooster will always be Fry and Laurie to me, so, I do not know.

There is also a production of this play with one of my sweetie's favorite stars, Matthew Macfayden, too.  Macfayden plays Jeeves.  Renee would definitely be down with that!
















Mwah, ... 

May 9, 2014

Paris





The Wife & I were on the Metro in Paris, I think it was when we were looking for that fantastic cheese shop in a decidedly non-touristy, non-English speaking part of Paris, (and The Wife just had the sweet non-English speaking lady cheese monger pick five cheeses for us.  The highlight was a raw milk St-Marcellin cheese that I could write a whole other entire blog post about), and as we were boarding our train, one of the ubiquitous Parisian Metro accordion players boarded with us.  (It was not the dude in the video above.  I just pulled that from YouTube.)



(The Wife & I have a joke, that whenever I am watching a French film, and she is doing something else in the house, and can not see the teevee, as soon as she hears an accordion -- which apparently are in every French film ever made, even a lot of Godard films -- she exclaims, "French film! You are watching a French film!")



Anyroad, the accordion player played for the folks in the carriage, and then got off a few stops later. He then set up in the normal spot in the passageway right before travelers reach the landing. But, as the train pulled away again, Renee and I could see another accordion player coming down another ramp, ready to set up.  


You should have seen the absolute look of disgust on our second musician.  He heard the other player first, and then poked around the corner to see who his competition was.  Renee and I bust out laughing, trying to figure out just what the rules and etiquette for these guys is.



I hope there was not a fight.

















Mwah, ...


























Here's the Saint the cheese is named after.  He looks more likely to be in the Beach Boys to me.


The Double opens today in New York, and L.A.,

And was playing in London when we there! (We should have seen it then.)

It is the second film directed by Richard Ayoade, (Moss from the IT Crowd) and is his follow up to Submarine, which was a ruddy good Welsh coming of age film with an obvious debt to Harold and Maude.  The Double looks to owe debts to Brazil by Terry Gilliam, which is a-ok with me because since Bob Hoskins' death I think it is time I snuggle up with Brazil again.

The Wife and I are v excited about The Double, and will see it as soon as we can.










Everyone have a fab Friday! 'Nother fauxluxe post this afternoon!
Ciao!

May 5, 2014

fauxluxe isnae dead

I lost my chic glasses,
Just reading frames,
In a Parisian taxi
On our way
To L'Atelier
On the Champs-Élysées

Near the Portobello Road,
In London,
Did I later
Refresh my eyesight
At a bookstore

The sweet shop girls there
Spoke of Cumberbatch
As Richard the Third,
But,
I know he is too tall

This new prescription is intense
And stronger than before,
But,
Now through these glasses
I can see in to your soul

************

So, we were waiting to go in to the most fabulous department store evah, in London, called The Liberty, and we were waiting because it was Sunday, and on Sundays The Liberty don't open till noon.

The Wife is furiously working on her mobile, researching The Liberty, and I keep drifting further to the left, with both my eyes and my feet.  Because, just to my left are some crappy cafes with Hull FC Tiger supporters, sitting down for an early lunch.  (Hull FC would win its FA Cup Semi at Wembley later that day.) And, also further to the left is the real honest to goodness Music Hall where Mister Memory from The 39 Steps had his last breath.  Not really.  Hitch did it in a studio, of course.  But, that is the very same Music Hall that Buchan and Hitchcock based their whole masterpiece upon.

I wander down, the Wife wonders why.

The Wife wis right.  There are a tourist group in front of the Music Hall, and the Hall is plastered with an obnoxious giant neon sign of the travesty that is pretending to entertain Londoners at the present time.  I did take a picture.  It is bad.  Here t'is:



The London Palladium, where Donat, Carroll, and Mr Memory saved the day.



That's right.  The London Palladium.

Meanwhile, here is what London department stores look like:



The Liberty.  Badass old school department store.



Anyroad, The Liberty is on our right, The Palladium is on our left, and I wander back to The Wife, and she has been doing some furious research on her iPhone about The Liberty.  And she says, "Ugh.  Sometimes it is better to do Wikipedia.  Know what I mean? I do not want The Liberty's version, right?"

"Yes," I say, "The public relations point of view? The Pee-are version, right?"

"Look," Renee says, "The doors are opening."

************

The Wife is right.  Most of the time.

Sometimes the PR version is done so well, you can do nothing but admire.

To wit,



All apologies to my Mexican friends, and their Cinco celebration (which is basically, yet another crappy reason for United States of America citizens to get loaded and embarrass themselves), but my new idea is to make a holiday out of Chanel No. 5.  The fifth day of the fifth month, which was Mademoiselle's lucky number, and when she launched the most famous perfume ever.  Seriously, ever.  This is not some, "I like The Stones, The Beatles suck" kind of thing.  There is Chanel No. 5, and there is everybody else.

But, let me get back to what I was saying:  Sometimes the flipping industry can give you the great story.  And the Inside Chanel videos, which you can watch on YouTube, and are a product of Chanel, are the best video representation of Coco Chanel's life I have yet seen.  (The last two videos with Lagerfeld speaking in French suck, but it is all animated magic till then.)

Those animated videos are better than both of the Chanel bio films I have seen.  Coco Before Chanel is not bad, actually good.  Fudging the truth in a pleasant sort of way.

As I like to do.

fauxluxe isnae dead.



































"Realize all things have their place/And live my life with dignity and grace"






All my love,
fauxluxe isnae dead.
You will be bombarded with fab posts re Paris et Londre, so get used to it.















xxxoooxxx