Golden Globes 2015: Best and worst red carpet looks according to me

I know you missed it, right?  So we’d done the dirty job for you!

 

Amal, who cares what you are wearing. The real question will always be: if George is clearly gay, why on hearth have you married him?
Amal, who cares what you are wearing. The real question will always be: if George is clearly gay, why on hearth have you married him?

 

If you are that skinny and the dress underline fat that doesn't even exist you really have to consider firing your stylist.
If you are that skinny and the dress underline fat that doesn’t even exist you really have to consider firing your stylist.
Still don't know what to say about this one.
Still don’t know what to say about this one.
Basically the wave of her hairs starts on her neck...
Basically the wave of her hairs starts on her neck…

 

Giuliana (Rancic) you are a member of the "Fashion Police" program and you dare to go out like this? Dying your hair too blond has clearly effect your ability to actually look yourself in the mirror.
Giuliana (Rancic) you are a member of the “Fashion Police” program and you dare to go out like this? Dying your hair too blond has clearly effect your ability to actually look yourself in the mirror.

 

She's clearly wearing a bed sheet
She’s clearly wearing a bed sheet
Dear Rachel, your boobs look soggy, it seems you have a muffin top and that tear is way too much for a woman's your age.
Dear Rachel, your boobs look soggy, it seems you have a muffin top and that tear is way too much for a woman’s your age.
For the love of God Jemima Kirke, dye those roots!
For the love of God Jemima Kirke, dye those roots!
Keira Knightley. She's the living proof that also the skinniest bitch looks awful in an Amish inspired dress. Even if it's a Chanel one.
Keira Knightley. She’s the living proof that also the skinniest bitch looks awful in an Amish inspired dress. Even if it’s a Chanel one.

 

Kelly Osbourne wearing George Chakra. We LOVE you darling. You rock it!
Kelly Osbourne wearing George Chakra.
We LOVE you darling. You rock it!

 

Uzo Aduba («Orange is the new black»). She's got big shoulders. Fine. So why don't we enhance them in the worst possible way?
Uzo Aduba («Orange is the new black»).
She’s got big shoulders. Fine. So why don’t we enhance them in the worst possible way?

 

Girls, I love you. Really. But, please, fire your stylists.
Girls, I love you. Really. But, please, fire your stylists.

All images @GettyImages

 

 

Gioca coi fanti ma lascia stare i Santi.

Rieccomi. Sì, lo so, mi sono fatta desiderare negli ultimi mesi. Che ci volete fare, colpa di ebola, del crollo le rublo, della guerra civile in Siria, dell’ISIS, dei massacri in Nigeria, della morte di innocenti editori di satira politica. Poiché KillingSnobbery nasce soprattutto anche per essere irriverente, e poiché apparentemente oggidì fare satira è un reato punibile con la morte, non resisto nello scrivere un pezzo provocatorio.

È da un po’ che mi frulla nella mente ma solo ora, ho raccolto materiale sufficiente per scrivere qualcosa di interessante e – spero – ironico.

Partendo dal presupposto che solo le ideologie totalitariste non sopportano la satira, andrò a dimostrare come, in realtà, le religioni altro non siano se non, appunto, dei totalitarismi. Con l’aggravante di essere travestiti da agnelli.

Spoiler alert: parlo di religioni, non di senso del divino o di spiritualità, diritti sacrosanti dell’animo umano. Parlo di religione in quanto apparato di potere.

Così come Kim Jong-woon non ha gradito  « The Interview », film che per via delle pressioni a destra e a manca – ma soprattutto nord-coreane – non è stato presentato al pubblico nelle sale ma solo online, accade – con la precisione di un treno svizzero – che ogni qualvolta si usa la religione quale oggetto/soggetto di satira o d’arte (nella forma della provocazione) i difensori della fede della religione in questione, si comportano esattamente come il dittatore della Repubblica Popolare Democratica (?!) di Corea. Ovvero scatenano i servizi segreti, incitano all’odio i propri fedeli, rilasciano interviste di fuoco e – per farla breve – usano tutti i mezzi a loro disposizione (e sono tanti) per scatenare l’opinione pubblica (e i governi) contro i malcapitati artisti, che hanno osato sbeffeggiare quegli dei così simili ai capi/sacerdoti che li rappresentano: intolleranti, vendicativi e falsi; usando – oltretutto – la giustificazione che: « non si parla male di Gesù, della Madonna, di Visnù o di Maometto – questo qua, poi, è uno che non lo puoi nemmeno guardare che subito ti senti dire “cerchi rogna?”». E la domanda è: « perché diavolo non se ne può parlare male?  Se dio è tutto: non è anche satira?»

Ultimo, in ordine temporale, il putiferio sollevato dal duo di artisti argentini (come se l’Argentina non avesse altri problemi) Pool Paolini & Marianela (Emiliano Paolini e Marianela Perelli) che hanno inaugurato, lo scorso 11 Ottobre 2014 a Buenos Aires, la mostra « Barbie, the Plastic Religion » partendo dalla seguente riflessione: se esiste una Barbie medico, assistente di volo, agente di polizia, perché non ci può essere una Barbie vergine di Luján?

APRITI CIELO

I due sono stati massacrati (e la mostra sospesa). E perché poi? Perché il loro lavoro era mediocre?

No, certamente, in nome del “politicamente corretto” anzi, del “religiosamente corretto”. Dicesi “politicamente corretto” quel perverso atteggiamento che muta nome alle cose mantenendone però invariata la sostanza, adopera eufemismi e termini socialmente accettabili per definire realtà che non lo sono, ma anche l’auto-convincersi che le cose siano mutate solo perché le chiamiamo in un modo diverso da prima (lettura vivamente consigliata in proposito è il volume «Igiene verbale. Il politicamente corretto e la libertà linguistica» di Edoardo Crisafulli – 15 euro ben spese).

Tornando ai nostri due beniamini: cosa hanno fatto costoro per meritarsi le ire di tutti i cristiani cattolici? Hanno semplicemente usato Barbie & Ken, le icone del consumismo moderno e del proprio sistema di valori, schemi mentali e standard di bellezza, per rappresentare santi, madonne e gesù cristi vari. Perché se è vero che la Chiesa Cattolica Romana permette la rappresentazione in forma umana delle proprie divinità, ciò è possibile solo in termini celebratori e giammai ironici come in questo caso. La bufera è stata tale e tanta che il duo, che aveva in programma anche Islàm ed Ebraismo, ha preferito lasciar perdere. Ecco, invece la cosa che mi dispiace di più: che abbiano lasciato perdere. Perché se si tarpa le ali alla libertà d’espressione, alla satira, allora non c’è piena libertà. Gesù Cristo starebbe dalla mia parte. Ne sono certa.

 

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* Gardens of Italy

It’s about that time of the year, that marvelous moment when you just want take your coat off and spend some time enjoying the sunlight, as it’s been all the Winter that you were sitting on a dirty stoop surrounded by pigeons just to be out in the fresh air.

And now that the season it’s just right why not to take a trip upstate and visit some of the most beautiful gardens in the world?

No, you don’t need to buy a gazillions guide or print maps & itineraries, now there is a more eco-friendly and smart tool: the perfect app! Gardens of Italy (available on iTunes) helps you find the nearest or most distant gardens open to the public.

The app gives you the complete map of Italian gardens (parks, botalical gardens and so on) that really worth a visit. You can find them by location, by theme (English garden, French garden, Italian garden, garden with labyrinth), by architecture, history, landscape, season. Each of them has a colorful sketched map, trivia history and helpful information not to mention breath taking pictures.

The App is updated every other two months, and has been integrated with a QR scanner, just in case you find one inside of a garden.

Remember:

Topiary, the ancient art of bending greenery to one’s will. (And it’s a definite step up from the garden gnome.)

About the App, available for iPhone and iPad

  • Updated: Feb 13, 2014
  • Version: 1.01
  • Size: 212 MB
  • Languages: English, Italian
  • Seller: Andreas Garzotto GmbH
  • © Libreria della Natura & Andreas Garzotto GmbH
  • $12.99

 

The App is open to new entries: owners of relevant gardens can contact us to add them; essential requirement is that the garden be open to the public (at least by appointment).

 

* models slavery

I already had the opportunity to write about the strict liaison between models and death, but this time I’m going to go even further analyzing the fashion system or, better, the model system.

I have to thank Ashley Sabin and David Redmond and the their documentary Girls model for a eye opening call.

The movie explores what goes on behind the glossy pictures we see in magazines.

Girl Model follows two protagonists involved in this industry: Ashley, a deeply ambivalent model scout who scours the Siberian countryside looking for fresh faces to send to the Japanese market, and one of her discoveries, Nadya, a 13-year-old plucked from her rustic home in Russia and dropped into the center of bustling Tokyo with promises of a profitable career. After Ashley’s initial discovery of Nadya, they rarely meet again, but their stories are inextricably bound. As Nadya’s optimism about rescuing her family from financial hardship grows, her dreams contrast against Ashley’s more jaded outlook about the industry’s corrosive influence.

Girl Model is a lyrical exploration of a world defined by glass surfaces and camera lenses, reflecting back differing versions of reality to the young women caught in their scope. As we enter further into this world, it more and more resembles a hall of mirrors, where appearances can’t be trusted, perception become distorted and there is no clear way out.

So you discovered that the so called «agencies» are nothing but pimps of the fashion system, that underage and innocent kids (because at 13 you are still a kid) are sistematically been stolen of their youth in the sake of the un-reachable image, that all the fashion magazine across the globe continue to pursuit and dictate as ideal to be reached.

Additionally all these little models and theirs families are swindled, since they are been asked to sign contract that they don’t understand, often written in other languages and that basically transform their little girls in “goods” to be shipped, used, and then sent back as the agencies please without even been paid for their work.

Nadya’s story is just one of many in this slavery market, that it’s not only well known inside the fashion system but also accepted, and never criticized. Here to be condemned are not just the various models agencies, but also one and for all the stupid idea that all the magazines are supporting or rather that is acceptable that all the women across the globe have to look like 13 years old kid, with no shape, to please a male public that reveal itself for what is reality just is: a child molester.

Girl Model: a documentary by Ashley Sabin and David Redmond.

Feltrinelli Real Cinema: DVD + “Apparenze” libro a cura di Anna Maria Pasetti.

Awards: Rome Film Festival Marc’Aurelio Award for Best Documentary in the Extra Section & EnelCuore Prize.

 

*Toiletry

I have to say I’m one of those woman that really hates take care of herself; showering it’s great, it’s quick & easy but when it comes to moisturizing, massaging and/or scrubbing I keep on collecting stuff on my shelf without really using them but constantly buying because «from now on I’m going to good, I’m going to use that moisturizer, for sure».

But this Spring now it’s finally here and I took the irrational optimism that the real first sunlight gave me to start a brand new regimen with my skin using Amway Premium Spa Collection “White tea” and I’m doing great.  and I’m happy to use them because there are none of those toxic stuff such as parabens.  Hurray!

http://www.amway.it/product/116813,spa-collection-premium#.UyMvOCgqYc4

*Merchant of Venice, in Venice!

As you all know I love Venice, during my last trip I had the great pleasure to be taken away by the newly renewed Museo Mocenigo (Study Centre for the History of Fabric and Costume) that now has also a section dedicated to perfume.

The perfume circuit within the museum, inserted into the refurbished context of displays, fills five rooms. It presents an exciting succession of antique objects and documents, multimedia instruments and sensorial experiences.

Among the documents on show, it is worth mentioning the precious cosmetics manual called “I Notandissimi Secreti de l’Arte Profumatoria” by Giovanventura Rossetti, published for the first time in Venice in 1555. This is the first manual in the West to adopt a scientific approach in cataloguing more than 300 formulae for cosmetics then in use in Venice. The displays also include some splendid herbaria, including the famous Mattioli Herbarium.

Besides the cultural itinerary inside the museum what caught my eye was the “Merchant of Venice” corner, a space that has been conceived as a direct result of the creation of the Perfume Museum, which in turn now crowns the creation of the fragrance.

Created by Mavive in exclusive for the Fondazione Musei Civici di Venezia, it involves different product lines based on the perfumery tradition of the Republic of Venice, its expertise in craftsmanship, and its century old trade with the Orient.

The Merchant Of Venice is a high-end perfumery line that takes its inspiration from the precious essences and spices that the Venetian merchants of the past used to import from the main harbours of the world, via the Mude (sea routes), and subsequently traded them throughout Europe. The luxurious brand was conceived as a direct result of the creation of the Perfume Museum. First of its kind in Italy, the Museum corner and the brand itself represent the one of the best practice that in Italy are so desperately necessary but largely indered: an agreement between a private company (in this case the historic Venetian perfume company) and the Public Museum (Fondazione Musei Civici Veneziani)

Merchant of Venice doesn’t have just the luxurious corner store into the Palazzo Mocenigo but can show off its great products also inside the flagship boutique near La Fenice theater. And not the boutique it’s not just any commercial spaces but opened inside the historical “spezieria” in campo San Fantin, dated XVII Century.

 

 

Female Friends

C’mon, we all have been there. You really like her, you just want all the best for her, but for a specific reason, and just for that –that suddenly became a National Case– you just had enough. And there’s absolutely no way that she’ll let it go. The funny part is that it’s not even your fault. It’s a poisoned combination of the way she perceive things, the way she perceive her ex, and the way you should have behaved with her ex. After their break-up.

Well, we all know that “EXs.” in general are a radioactive subjects. In this case the “ex” is a Nuclear Bomb. I always knew it so I kept the distance with him, also because we have never been close, but what I was supposed to do when I received the invitation for the “ex’s” wedding?  Why did I received?  Who the Hell knows! Perhaps because I’m Italian, I have good taste and they wanted a good taste wedding gift for God sake!  I do not know!

But, despite the evidence, there is no way that this particular friend would let it go. I am guilty. What for is yet to be defined, but it’s secondary to the point of her being hurt.

So, now what? A future full of harking, recriminating, trying to make me feeling guilty.  A little while ago I said :«Please, give me some time». And now, months have passed and I know there is this gian white elephant in the room every time we talk, or, better, the 2.0 definition of talking: bitching on Facebook. I know it’s there. I can feel it also via FB. And no matter what, not even an Ocean between us, can make things right.

I really don’t know what to do with this friend. Nothing I’d say would heal her wounds, nothing I’d do would make her feel loved (by me) so dear friend, you know who you are, this is me, asking YOU publicly, to be forgiven and never ever be told again what I was supposed to do.

Adele, Someone like you

 

 

 

A year younger.

You have to know that I’m very demanding about my birthday.  It’s not that I expect a big present or Jude Law knocking on my door (well, kind of)

Happy birthday to me indeed
Happy birthday to me indeed

but I like it to be special.  And I had my bit of special this year too. So special that my husband bought the wrong present – as I wasn’t clear enough all year long – and my parents weren’t so busy renovating the bathroom that they didn’t had time to buy me anything but a cake. Thank God I have friends who phoned me from New  York, London, Paris, Switzerland, Madrid, Shanghai, and various places all over Italy.  Guys, you made my day!  So Happy Birthday to you, too!

Barbie Loves Israel!

In Tel Aviv life is at the beach!
In Tel Aviv life is at the beach!

 

Nazareth Arabesque
Nazareth Arabesque

This is one of the most ironic, funny, and interesting projects that recently got my attention. As I said a little while ago I believe that the time for the coming back of “photo love story” has finally arrived. Back in the ’70s and ’80s they were all the rage and I guess that is gold in these times of revitalizing what was uncool and cheesy back then.
So I bet the resurrection of photo love stories is quite imminent. And a warning sign is this funny project made by Maria Giovanna Callea and Enrico Pescantini.
The most (in)famous couple of our young age is shoted during a vacation in Israel. But Barbie & Ken are the perfect metaphor for those hip couple we all read about on the well groomed magazines: a transposition of fake and conventional happiness according to the ’00 standards of social acceptance. The funny thing is that “our” generation and “our” standards on themes such as what is considered “beauty” and “success” or even “vacation” were heavily influenced and shaped by the culture that made (physically) Barbie & Ken. So thanks to this fiction photo-reporting we can see what we really are according to those stereotypes.

Barbie, the Californian looking blond. Basically a spoiled brat. We bet she wears Zac Posen, Jimmy Choo, Marc Jacobs, and she’s the star guest in the latest Sofia Coppola’s movie.

Ken, the college sweetheart. Perennially spry tanned, well groomed, ball-less. We strongly suspect is one of those “in the closet” boyfriend we all have had once.

 

Take me to Ein Gedi. In Barbie-jeep a En Gedi
Take me to Ein Gedi. In Barbie-jeep a En Gedi

 

 

The Sodom Misfortune.
The Sodom Misfortune.
Floating on the Dead sea
Floating on the Dead sea
Golden Jerusalem
Golden Jerusalem
Lost in Sodoma
Lost in Sodoma

The lost art of hand writing

In this era of Twitting, Facebooking, Pinteresting, how many among us still hand write?  Even an handwritten note seems a long haul nowadays.  Not to mention the handwriting itself as a form of art or – simply – as readable at all. I had the chance to attend an old fashion school, where – still in late ’80s – calligraphy was still thought. So as Italian, fond of calligraphy, working in the publishing industry, with a strong background in epigraphy and philology, I really pay attention on how to arch n’s and stroke e’s when I write with my long time owned MontBlanc fountain pen (the nib – as wine – gets better with time because is shaped by our own peculiar pen tilt.) And, I confess, judge a person on how good (or bad) is/she hand writes. I know, this is a bit snob but what can I say?  This is my dirty little pleasure.  During the last Design week in Milan among the nth chair and the ultimate “iconic”-thing I discovered a little diamond: a new ink produced in the most old fashion way from vegetable waste (vegetable and fruits). Not only “Estratto” (Estract) is an eco-friendly project aimed to re-introduce this technique but is also beautifully packed. Two are the options the long thin phial, that also can be used as pen thanks to its unique shape and the pot-bellied old-chemister inspired flask both specifically designed to enhance the [natural] beauty of the content.

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ph. Beppe Brancato — styling Martina Sanzarello.

ESTRATTO is a project by Ludovica Canzutti.

Paulette – le féminin fait maison

Well, not, this is not a post I’m going to write in French, even if I’m very very very tempted. But I try to stay true to myself so it’s going to be in English even if this magazine is the most quintessential French thing I saw in the last couple of years. So I’m going to write a (virtual) post for a real magazine, still printed on paper.

After years of flipping through the pages of un-cool-agerave-cool magazine I already know what to expect:

  • impossible standard model on the cover
  • 200 pages of ADVs
  • the director’s usually quite lame editorial
  • some pages focused on “what’s new”
  • an interview with the “hot” model/artist/director/celebrity
  • a service of some kind of general interest
  • 3 fashion services (one of which with all the advertisers) featuring ridiculously styles & extra-thin models
  • the beauty pages
  • the “cool” home page
  • the kitchen pages
  • oroscope
  • 100 pages of ADV

So, bumping into something so new and so refreshing gave me hope for the future of magazines, that are all going to die if they don’t realize that they are old and boring and so far from everything real (and interesting) with their (polished and empty) contents. As a matter of fact reading an article on “how to save 100€” between the interview of Matt Demon and the AD of the new Chanel fragrance will not help me to feel any closer to what they – at the end – promote. So, next time I’m not going to buy you, dear old fashion magazine. I’m going to buy Paulette!

For the first time I felt, ehm, represented. The magazine define itself as “partecipatif” aka made by readers.  And this is true in the most nice and cool way: all the models are real people and everybody is welcome to submit illustration, news, ideas, video, pictures. I guess making a comparison will be better than 2.000 words.  Paulette is to the magazine world what GIRLS is for the TV series. True, real, unveiled, brutally honest, funny, quirky and utterly kawaii!

Plus they are independent. They don’t have a big publishing company to cover their (big) production expenses (right Vogue, Elle, Marie-Claire?) so they started to raise the money for the “paper” launch in the most 2.0 way: first Facebook, then the online edition, then the first number made with the money of pre-subscribers, then the second printed issue thanks to an internet found raising campaign.

I can only wish them the best of luck. Paulette really deserve it!

P.S. Plus I secretly covet to be their cover girl, and that’s why I wrote this post.

 

my personal copy of Paulette
my personal copy of Paulette

Why a stylist is totally useless & the MET ball

First of all who the Hell is Zandra Rhodes and why does she get invited to the gala. Second... where she had find that rubbish?  On a trash bin in Union Square?
First of all who the Hell is Zandra Rhodes and why does she get invited to the gala. Second… where she had find that rubbish? On a trash bin in Union Square?

So a couple of days ago was gala night at the Metropolitan Museum in New York.  For those out there who still don’t know what the Met ball is, here’s a straight forward definition:  “a useless socialite themed event (this year is Punk: Chaos to Couture in New York) where stars, fake stars, wannabee, third list starlettes, untalented socialites, and their mentors (a.k.a. fashion designers) gather together to prove the world that even US has “grand soirées”  and “royals” like Europe. And since Americans don’t shine for good taste (or taste at all) they invented a new job: the stylist, a person supposed to help them pick the right dress. As results, instead, we (European) get a red carpet full of crap. And good business for a lot of our designers since most of the gowns are Italian or French. Thanks Met ball, you are just fresh air for our economy and our laugh.

My favorite!
My favorite!
Oh, look a fairy. Oh, no it's just Linda Evangelista.
Oh, look a fairy. Oh, no it’s just Linda Evangelista.

US-FASHION-MET-COSTUME-GALA

I can't live in a world where Sienna reminds me of Loredana Lecciso.
I can’t live in a world where Sienna reminds me of Loredana Lecciso.
Nicki, I respect you and all but... REALLY?!
Nicki, I respect you and all but… REALLY?!
She looks like Spock but badly dressed.
She looks like Spock but badly dressed.
Anna you are off topic at your own event.
Anna you are off topic at your own event.
DvF looks like a "saibaba" on acid at studio '54
DvF looks like a “saibaba” on acid at studio ’54
Donatella... ah, Donatella you almost look elegant. Bravo, there's a first time for everything!
Donatella… ah, Donatella you almost look elegant. Bravo, there’s a first time for everything!
You, out there, who dressed Cameron with a dress that shows a mons pubis, simply shame on you.
You, out there, who dressed Cameron with a dress that shows a mons pubis, simply shame on you.
Emma, we get you are trying to take off from you all the "Harry Potter" look but wearing a piece of black toilet paper simply doesn't help the cause.
Emma, we get you are trying to take off from you all the “Harry Potter” look but wearing a piece of black toilet paper simply doesn’t help the cause.
Carine looks like a heroin addicted who've just stolen a used t-shirt at Buffalo Exchange
Carine looks like a heroin addicted who’ve just stolen a used t-shirt at Buffalo Exchange
Like I was fishing and I coulnd't make an appointment with my stylist so I just put on this net. And died my hair with Clorox
Like I was fishing and I coulnd’t make an appointment with my stylist so I just put on this net. And died my hair with Clorox
Katie has a boob falling out.
Katie has a boob falling out.
Gwyneth you are a millionaire, what about buying a $60 bra?
Gwyneth you are a millionaire, what about buying a $60 bra?
Gisele, you are The body, we get that but nonetheless you should wear at least a pair on knickers
Gisele, you are The body, we get that but nonetheless you should wear at least a pair on knickers
Perhaps it's not in theme (unless you consider elegant black laces "Punk") but you are quite fab Lena!
Perhaps it’s not in theme (unless you consider elegant black laces “Punk”) but you are quite fab Lena!
Julianne you are all of us!
Julianne you are all of us!
Elegant and appropriate
Elegant and appropriate

 

Recovering from Design Week in Milan

Going to Design Week this past week sounded like a good idea. Even fun. Lots of cappuccini and cool places to visit. But now that I’m sitting in front of my mac with a massive headache, matted hair and the impression I haven’t sleep for an entire week, suddenly an horrifying thought: “OMG I’m not in my 20’s anymore, I can’t going around party after party all night long.” The recovering is going to be really long (10 days?) and quite elaborate: detox drinks, early night at home, relaxing massages, huge quantity of moisturizing and the secret weapon against dark circles***  unless I shell out ($33) and get to myself this great Oh Kit, What Have I Done? hangover kit, I’ve just red about.

Inside a bonanza of tricks:

  •  an eyemask, an aromatherapy shower burst
  • Does My Nose Look Big In This Eyemask. Padded with soft black toweling back and black elastic strap
  • 2 Bytox Hangover Prevention patches
  •  a cucumber and aloe vera face mask
  • a jojoba hair mask
  • wild rose revitalizing eye pads
  • aromatherapy intensive foot cream (those bloody heels!)

I think I totally going to surrender and buy it, because you all know how much I love receiving great boxes.

***Touche Éclat by YSL for those out there who still don’t know.

 

 

 

 

Screen shot 2013-04-15 at 18.58.45 Screen shot 2013-04-15 at 18.58.58 Screen shot 2013-04-15 at 18.59.24

 

 

 

 

Fancy some coffee?

Well, well, well it seems that the entire universe has come to Milan, a city that happens to be remotely likable and very much alive only in these days. For a very interesting young and dynamic coffee brand  [MOGI caffè] I’m currently covering the Design Week, shooting and posting on FB and Twitter the atmosphere into the cafés I am visiting, so in these days there’s a lot of testing coffee-making skills of all the baristas working on pop up-skimpy-but-cozy coffee kiosks. And there’s a lot of caffeine flowing in my veins but after the pick reached its maximum high I crumple and I just need to rest. But Design Week doesn’t often offer quiet spots where to rest your flesh so you have to find the right place exactly where you are, but I’m a natural cool hunter and the Kitchen Library it’s exactly what I was looking for in Ventura / Lambrate. There you can find everything to fullfil your tired body and your overexposed eyes: a reading lounge featuring some iconic Karimoku New Standard products variations made especially for the occasion and a temporary library with a special selection of books, curated by Fortino Editions Miami. And last but not least the edible food installation that the collective Arabeschi di Latte is so great at. This light kitchen is a quiet and recreative retreat from the exuberant Design Week. To rest and read.

 

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Kitchen Library_detail

 

 

 

 

 

And they don’t even have the word for it!

Loo, lavatory, bathroom, toilet, restroom as Italian living abroad you’ll understand master wich word to pick (when you have to ask where to go when nature calls) only after many many many years. As a matter of fact this unsolved question may put you in the middle of very embarrassing situations, resulting the classic Italian who’s barely able to articulate some foreign words.  Thank God now, there’s a place in London where you won’t be secretly laughed at when the matter comes up.  The final solution we (Italians) were waiting for: a hidden espresso bar in abandoned toilet.  Yes, you are reading well.  The place’s name is the Attendant and you may fall down in it, when sauntering in the über cool neighbourhood of Fitzrovia.  The former Victorian Gentleman’s convenience is now a  modern espresso bar serving incredible coffee, English-style breakfast (porridge, anyone?), sandwiches, cakes, teas. Here the original porcelain urinals, produced by Doulton & Co in 1890, have been plugged, cleaned and converted into an inspired seating line. The old attendant’s office, complete with payment window, has been turned into a little kitchen. An old hand drier even sits above modern banquette seating. And if you don’t feel like climbing down the stairs you can always push the street level buzz, someone will come up and serve you. Espresso!

Definitely the place has character.

 

 

 

Attendant, underground 1890 Victorian Gentleman's Toilet convert Attendant, underground 1890 Victorian Gentleman's Toilet convert Attendant, underground 1890 Victorian Gentleman's Toilet convert Screen shot 2013-04-01 at 19.47.40 Screen shot 2013-04-01 at 19.48.18

Why Walt Disney may ruin your design taste forever

I have to admit it I’ve always hated Walt Disney’s cartoon. Ok, to be honest perhaps I had stopped liking “One Hundred and One Dalmatians” after the age of 3 but as soon as my design education started (thanks Dad) I suddentely understood how poor Walt’s design was. At least the one showed to the public, I’m pretty sure he was more refined than that. So when my mother took me to the local library my fav. book were those illustrated by Tina Davis, Tomi Ungerer, Richard Scarry, or Bruno Munari till I had an epiphany with Edward Gorey. His gloomy, dark, spooky yet noble and refined draw captivated me forever. His books were piled on the “kids” section but I was able to get that they weren’t ment to meet the childish needs of fairy tales romance. Exactly as I was able to understood that the Muppet Show was — yes — something for kids at some level but definetely for adults on so many others, as I wasn’t able to get what later I discovered being sarcasm and irony against social mores. So, now when I flip through the pages of The Willowdale Handcar: Or, the Return of the Black Doll it’s clear to me that he was the first one to introduce me to surrealism. And I’m grateful.

 

If you’re doing nonsense it has to be rather awful, because there’d be no point. I’m trying to think if there’s sunny nonsense. Sunny, funny nonsense for children — oh, how boring, boring, boring. As Schubert said, there is no happy music. And that’s true, there really isn’t. And there’s probably no happy nonsense, either.

IMAGES

 

Richard Scarry What Do People Do All Day – book cover

Bruno Munari Nella notte buia – book cover

Edward Gorey The Willowdale Handcar: Or, the Return of the Black Doll – book cover

Edward Gorey Dancing cats and neglected murderesses – book cover

Edward Gorey “the black doll” – doll

Tina Davis Look and cook – book cover

 

munari-notte-buia-1 SONY DSC url-3 url-6 Screen shot 2013-02-23 at 18.42.43url-1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why I do love GIRLS

A lot of buzz around this show. A lot of hate. A lot of love. To me, this TV show that describes the assorted humiliations, disasters and rare triumphs of four very different twenty-something girls simply means two things: finally a character that is simply human on her being not glossy, skinny, perfectly coiffed, almost photoshopped even in real life. She’s fat, she dresses in a very debatable way, sometimes she’s even ugly. But she’s smart, funny, and quite poignant and at the very end it’s what that matter. And it’s set literally on my stoop.  Yep, the show is set in the Brooklyn I know, I love, I live in. I know very well cafè Grumpy were I hang out occasionally (despite their a way too rosted cafè) and I love stay there doing absolute nothing but indie-hipster watching. It’s very relaxing and funny because Americans (especially NewYorkers) are thought not to look at people (you) and mind to their own business but it’s clear that their are trying to understand why a 30 something too well dressed for their standards is doing on their kingdom. Should they be afraid of a rapid rent climbing because of people like me moving into the ‘burg? Well, that is exactly what Hannah (girls main character) would think. Right there. Right now. Since she’s serving me my small latte.

 

 

How do you feel about…

So, let’s talk about men with skirts. Apparently the only ones allowed to do such a thing are Scottish Highlands fellas, with their rear quilted kilts, often  tailored and worn without underwear, as the tradition of a “true Scotsman” commands. But the greedy hands of fashion lately have grabbed this great piece of design forcing it in something that just the bravest chapsurl-3 can wear. First came Comme des Garçons with its Japanese designer both clueless about how a Eastern man would feel about wearing a, well, skirt, but also confident on that kind of ornament because accustomed of men wearing “froks”. And then came Marc Jacobs, fashion enfant terrible, Anna Wintour‘s protégé, and his very cool and naif way of wearing what is an actual everyday garment (at least it was at the beginning of its story).

Personally I believe that skirts/kilts are incredibly sexy on a man and I strongly support the cause. Amen.

 

 

Marc Jacobs Wearing A Dress url-1 url-2

Happy Birthday Killing Snobbery!

urlCari Amici, Dear Friends,

oggi Killing Snobbery compie un anno! Today is Killing Snobbery 1st birthday!

Grazie a tutti voi per averci seguito in questa nuova avventura. Thanks to all of you for your precious support.

Stay tuned! Il blog ha appena smesso di sgattonare per cominciare a correre. Stay tuned! The blog is just getting ready to blow off your minds!

Love XXX

Olivia & Mircea

 

Taking notes…

Since a blog is also another place to fill with stuff that I actually love, I want to talk about another great discover of mine. This week the item is a notebook.  But this is not just another notebook, this is a fashion notebook for prof.!  You can feel like Yves Saint Laurent, Mademoiselle Coco or McQueen scribbling, drawing, doodling while, hem, pretending you are taking note during a class or a boring meeting with your colleagues.

In a very chic and modern FASHION-ary

 

KillingSnobbery meets THE CHARLESTONES!

Since we are a cool blog, we met the coolest band of the block: The Charlestones.

Four guys (Mattia Bonanni – voice, guitar, Matteo Peresson – bass, Federico Pellizzari – drums, Gian Marco Crevatin – guitar) at their third album – the recently released “Off the beat” – that have actually have something special to say and sing about.  It could be their so brit and charming allure, could be their being so unconventionally Italians, we wanted to meet them.

Here’s the interview, uncensored, with Mattia and Gian Marco.

MirceaKilling: Where did you meet? 

The Charlestones: Yeah, we met in high school. Well, three of us. Gian Marco joined the band later, in the first year of college. More details? We were all good in sciences, not much in geographies. I was a kind of genius in maths. (M)

I was good at gym, anyway I just saved them from the abyss (G)

M.K.: How old are you four all together? And each one of you?

TheC.: Everyone the same age, 96 and a half. (M)

M.K.: Any other side project aside from music? 

TheC.Me and the little drummer boy, we study politics (G).  

I’ve studied Physics, now Statistics. Then I make biscuits and sell them. Matthew, the bassist, studies engineering. (M)

M.K.: Did you really get the chance to live abroad?

TheC.: I was born in Paris and I lived in for a few years. I’m sure I will come back one day, I hope with the rest of the band but I don’t know if they really want to come with me. (M)

M.K.: Did you attend music school?

TheC.: Not really, I’ve just finished learning all the chords. It took me ages to do it (G) The same for me. My guitar coach lives under a cascade, in the forest, sometimes I met him. D’you know Maharishi. Something like that. (M)

M.K.: How come you are SO Brit (pop)?

TheC.: Well, first of all, far away province is definitely our salvation. Second, I think the right question is: why everyone manage to be just followers of bands such as Tiziano Ferro or Negramaro? There’s no reason. Believe in me, it’s just so much easyer to refuse all of that! (M)

I just saw Oasis on TOTP, they were so… WOW. after that, i get my internet access and that’s it. (G)

M.K.: You guys are indie, Brit, ’60s skinny, if I tell you even a bit hipster will you get offended?

TheC.: Fortunely, we are not from Milan. More important, we make good music. Hipsters don’t do that! (M)

Hipsters just put their asses on a 80’s synthesizer yawning at the microphone, we play really soulful music! (G)

M.K.: What about the future? Hit the Italian market is your target or are you planning to go away, as many other had already done, moving to London, New York, Berlin or… ?

TheC.: I got some friends in London, I really miss them both (G)

I want move to Paris, that’s always my first choice! Our record came out in Japan last August, we hope to land in soon. Then we have fans in Iran, how it’s possible? Put them all together and try to make them fit as best as you can. We’ll try to do it! (M)

M.K.:  Are you somehow politically involved? If no: why? 

TheC.:  I study politics, I know the rules baby, how can I get involved somehow? it’s horrifying (G) 

No, I’m not. I don’t believe in politicians, I prefer to believe in me. Then in Buddha. (M)

M.K.: What do you think it’s missing in the Italian music panorama for a young band such as yours? and in general?

TheC.: Singing your songs in english is not a good idea, it’s like “mmm, ok you re good boys, but, when are you gonna start singing in your own language?” (G)

I just want to change it, totally. (M)

M.K.: What is your most desired dream as a band?

TheC.: Large audience, I mean, we deserve it! (G)

Noel Gallagher saying: “Listen to The Charlestones, buy their records and all the merchandise!”

M.K.: Do you envision yourselves playing at the Glastonbury festival anytime soon? And if that festival is too commercial where else would you like to play? and play with?

TheC.: Glasto is awesome, Coachella too (palms!) (G)

M.K.:  What about the girls?  Any groupies around yet? (I bet so, even if you deny).

TheC.: If girls love you, it means that you are good in something, that’s what I think. Obviously, that’s not referred on girlfriends, they don’t like what we do! Well, they like it only sometimes. But actually, we have no girlfriends, we love all the girls. (M)

For 2013 I’m gonna love the blondies (G)

M.K.: Who’s your stylist?  Where do you buy yours clothing?  Any preferred brand?  Any hated one?  Do you actually go around wearing those (cool) stuff or it’s just for the stage?

TheC.:  We go everywhere dressed like that, ca va sans dire! I love 60’s vintage stuff, I do not follow brands apart from April77 (they did al ot of good stuff in the early days (2005/06/07) (G)

My mum is an excellent dressmaker, she has just made this cool sweater. She is a fan of Marie Claire and makes me everything I need (like I actually need something!). Write her, it could be cool for your next stories! Then, if you need, there is the good April77 boutique in Paris. I buy my pants there, my everyday pants! (M)

So girls, let’s go LIKE them on Facebook, or at their gigs (soon) around the world!

https://www.facebook.com/thecharlestones

Here’s the song that let me fell in love with them!  “She Was a Firework”

 

 

Oh God, it’s Christmas!

Since it’s Christmas it totally makes sense that I’m writing this post. Me, the evil twin of this uncommon duo. The one that is not even Christian. Me, that I remember it’s Christmas just because it’s Holiday. The one that post on her FB timeline the video “Fuck Christmas”. The ateist one. The one that Ms. Serapioni described as “annoying detail oriented pain in the ass”.  The one that cares about tomorrow just for professional reasons (such as receiving precious corporate gift from Tiffany, La Perla, Peck and so on). Me.

So, since I  genuinely don’t give a damn about tomorrow, but I love you all, I’m going to wish you a warm, wonderful, loving Christmas on behalf of Olivia. Amen.

 

 

THIS IS FROM OLIVIA

Robbie Williams and Nicole Kidman – Somethin’ Stupid

THIS IS FROM— EHM, ME

Fuck Christmas – Eric Idle 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=DhwQw5kgDq0

… and let them eat cake.

Sometimes I wonder about the “supposed to be” luxury world and I find myself lost in an Ocean of useless, expensive, distasteful… stuff.  Like this one.  Was it really necessary?  A special trunk for a cake?  Seriously guys at Louis Vuitton, didn’t you have anything else to come up with to celebrate promote your new store in Vienna?  I mean, you certainly didn’t have budget limits for communication so I strongly doubt that the most amazing creative agencies that you work with actually suggested that as flamboyant way to get the attention of your public.  It’s like making a special trunk for salami or panettone to celebrate a new opening in Milan!  It’s almost offensive!  Not only because of the total lack of creativity (which should be a felony with your staff and creative director) but also because of the tackiness underlying the trunk itself.  And yes, you became famous because Mr. Louis Vuitton actually was a great layetier-emballeur and it’s the Maison “tradition and must” custom special and unusual luggage but to launch something I expect more, I actually want more from you!  From your 158 years of history!  You should surprise us, intrigue us, let us half-view the discrete world of Dutch and Princesses, Queens and aristocrats from all over the world and not present us something that Donald Trump would consider “luxury.”

The Strokes – What Ever Happened?

Tutti a cena a casa nostra, è arrivato il vino!

Ve lo ricordate il vecchio club del libro? E al gioco della bottiglia ci avete giocato vero?

Adesso non disquisiamo se abbiate letto o baciato di più: vi basti sapere che, volendo, potreste avere il meglio di entrambi gli svaghi.

3wine è appena nata e sembra essere l’iniziativa più carina sul mercato per apprezzare le gioie della convivialità.
Come funziona? Potete abbonarvi – come si faceva una volta con i libri che però nessuno leggeva mai – e ricevere a casa ogni mese una scatola di design, contenente tre ottimi vini e tre ricette abbinate da uno chef: ricette molto originali e non troppo difficili da realizzare e vini di ottimo livello che avrete di sicuro voglia di stappare.

Non siete sicuri vi possa piacere? Per una cifra contenuta, potete chiedere un’unica spedizione e poi decidere se avete voglia di invitare qualcuno indicando come dress code della serata “grembiule e sorriso” oppure se preferite presentarvi alla porta dei vostri più cari amici con la scatola design di 3Wine.

Io sono certa, invece, che vi piacerà perché, come dicono i giovani fondatori di 3Wine, “Staying in is the new going out”: stare in casa a cucinare per gli amici è molto più piacevole (e più economico) che diventare matti a trovare un tavolo nel nostro locale preferito e soprattutto si può giocare più agevolmente al gioco della bottiglia.

Se siete foodies scatenati, su di voi farà leva anche l’effetto sfida, tipo: “Riuscirò a preparare la perfetta torta al cioccolato da abbinare al passito?”.

Nel dubbio, intanto, seguite Mimma nella video ricetta

If you marry a hipster…

 

Don’t you ever think to live like Kate Middleton.  It’s not that he’s not your Prince Charming, it’s just that a hipster is not just the cool guy who used to take you out to a steampunk party, to the tweed run bike parade in London “just because it’s fun”, to an endless list of (improbable) events so terribly “avant guard” or – better – rétro guard.

If you marry a hipster you have to face the naked truth: he’s never going to fix that thing or deal with the post office or withdraw money because… he’s too busy being cool!  So, girl, if you marry a hipster you may want to consider to follow an intensive DIY course program because unclog the sink or paint a wall it’s going to become your kingdom sooner than expected!

And here a über hipster indie pop kult, the Strokes — Under cover of darkness

Champagne-and-caviar socialist: oui, c’est moi!

Gauche caviar: is a pejorative French term to describe someone who claims to be a socialist while living in a way that contradicts socialist values. Ok, that’s the definition but what if I’m left oriented person – politically speaking – and I like great stuff? Would this definition be appropriate?  I found myself wondering many times.  Yes, I like cashmere, so?  What is bad about it?  And no, I don’t like affordable cashmere (this expression is a litotes itself, like the real cashmere can be affordable, ah!) because I may be a Salonkommunist but every time I buy something I actually care about what behind (and beneath) it.  So when, let’s say, I buy a pair of Tod’s I immediately think to many friends of mine who work there and I think about how good the big brand treat them with something really close to “real socialism”.

 

So, voilà a very Gauche Caviar French Singer: Serge Gaisbourg – Chez Le Ye Ye

Intervistando Debora Villa… in italiano!

Mircea: «Oggetto libro, dunque: perché lei ci crede ancora nella pagina scritta? o è solo un espediente del bieco ufficio MGKT che sfrutta l’ondadella sua popolarità? e tra l’altro, i titoli in latino (maccheronico): ci spiega l’origine di questa trovata? (tra l’altro apprezzatissima da me, laureata in lettere classiche (ndr)».

Debora Villa:«La scelta del libro, come tutte le cose che faccio, sono mio malgrado ti assicuro un cosiddetto cane sciolto, è stata dettata solo dalla voglia di farlo. A seguito del successo dello spettacolo abbiamo pensato di scrivere ( trasponendo in letteratura un testo cabarettisico ed ampliandone capitoli e contenuti) i nostri deliri . I titoli latini sono, come indicato nel libro, di Antonio Amurri che scrisse un libro comico ” come ammazzare la moglie e perche”».

M.: «Dalle pagine del tuo (tuo) libro emerge come ancora radicatissimo lo stereotipo della donna in cerca del Principe Azzurro che le risolva la vita, per sempre. Ma è davvero ancora così radicato nella mentalità comune questo fatto? tutta colpa di Walt Disney? E, secondo lei (te) come dobbiamo fare per liberarcene una volta per tutte?».

D.V.:«Dunque, bella domanda. in realtà credo sia ancora molto e profondamente radicato nella cultura Italiana lo stereotipo della donna in cerca del principe azzurro. Così radicato che crea sommovimenti dolorosi e attriti apparentemente insolvibili tra i due generi. Non saremmo così in crisi se non dovessimo sradicare dal nostro profondo questi archetipi . Ma ci stiamo lavorando e anche l’uomo si è stancato di dover rappresentare il guerriero senza macchia . I tempi sono maturi… Ce la faremo insieme!».

M.: «Una cosa che mi ha lasciata un poco perplessa del libro riguarda il capitolo sulle molestie sessuali, cfr. pagg. 41 – 43. La c.d. mano morta è una molestia in tutto e per tutto, perché scrive di aver reagito in maniera tanto lassa? in qualche modo pare un diritto dell’uomo provarci, l’unica cosa che può fare la donna è adottare la tecnica del camaleone: rimanere invisibile sperando di non diventare oggetto di questo delitto. Perché non una bella reazione quale lo svergognamento della persona sull’autobus, la denuncia verbale o, perché no, un bel ceffone? Non crede di passare un messaggio di tolleranza per questa “abitudine”?».

D.V. :«Dunque nella mia vita reale ho incontrato così tanti “maniaci” e lo virgoletto perche alcuni erano realmente malati altri inevitabilmente solo maiali impuniti che credevano di avere il diritto di abusare.Ho reagito in tutti i modi da te elencati e anche molto di più 🙂  Nella vita irreale dello spettacolo, della comicità della letteratura ( permettimi questo termine, riferito al nostro libro) ho solo chiuso con una battuta che reputo divertente. Se può interessare sono testimonial da anni di una onlus che si occupa di violenza domestica e il mio impegno civile e sociale è costante)».

M.: «Qui negli States sta spopolando, How to be a woman di Caitlin Moran (Ci vogliono le palle per essere una donna, Sperling & Kupfer) lo ha letto? e se sì, cosa ne pensa?  CFR. un po’ di materiale nel caso non lo avesse letto».

D.V. :«Lo Sto leggendo proprio in questi giorni ( che coincidenza no? ) per ora ho solo letto il primo capitolo sulle mestruazioni e la pornografia. Moooolto interessante! Grande donna! Mi sembra che scardini i fondamentali finora validi per crearne di nuovi. Aspetto di leggerlo tutto, non vedo l’ora».

M.: «Che senso ha, per lei (te), in quanto donna, fare la comica? quali sono i tuoi modelli presenti, passati e futuri? Quale è il suo (tuo) scopo a parte sopravvivere in mezzo alle veline e pagare l’affitto?».

D.V. : «Io vengo dalla provincia di Milano il Bronx per intenderci. Se non avessi avuto la fortuna di possedere l’ironia e l’auto ironia non sarei sopravvissuta. Sempre avendo una fortuna sfacciata sono riuscita a farne il mio lavoro. Che amo ( li ho fatti tutti e mi ammalavo, non potrei farne un altro, giuro! e non è facile te lo assicuro. Non ho protezione, agganci nè sono figlia d’arte ) comunque dopo vent’anni posso dirti che la declinazione che amo di più è lo spettacolo live. Fare ridere è un dono e l’energia che si genera è potente. Poi a me piace fare ridere sia su cose sciocche ma anche su cose di contenuto. Che dire lo farò finche campo.  ( ad ogni modo faccio tantissime serate ma sono molto più le serate di beneficenza che pagate, diciamo che grazie alla televisione , alla radio, etc lavoro e poi appena posso ricambio la fortuna ricevuta compensando con la mia disponibilità dando un contributo sociale. Sempre alla mia maniera ovviamente)».

M.: «Il Cambio Armadi. Ci spiega come insegnare agli uomini a farlo bene come lo faremmo noi delegandogli questa patata bollente che, tra l’altro, nessuno capisce come mai toccherebbe a noi svolgere?».

D.V. «ci sono cose che non potranno mai cambiare, mai :)».

M: «Una battuta che sta spopolando è C’È CHI DICE CHE IL SOGNO DI OGNI DONNA SIA TROVARE L’UOMO PERFETTO. CAZZATE. IL SOGNO DI UNA DONNA È ABBUFFARSI SENZA METTER SU UN CHILO. Che ne pensa?»

D.V. «hehehehe verissimo!».

M.: «In una sua recente intervista ha dichiarato di voler viaggiare. Significa che ci verrà a trovare, a noi italici cervelli in fuga, a Londra e New York?»

D.V.: «Magari sarebbe bellissimo fare oltre che il viaggio anche lo spettacolo. Per ora mi Sto adoperando per una traduzione( adattamento)  francese non è esclusa una inglese e comunque si mi sono sbloccata voglio vedere il mondo».

M.: «All’estero la nostra reputazione – grazie ai super politici dei quali ci siamo dotati – non è mai stata tanto scarsa. Donnaioli (della peggior specie) baciapile, evasori fiscali, nepotisti (la questione delle lauree false e Bossi jr. ci ha ulteriormente fatti cascare più in basso) cosa ci consiglia per non vergognarci quando usciamo per strada?».

D.V. : «No. Prendiamoci carico di ciò che siamo, se permettiamo a certa gente di governarci ( e ora con questo governo tecnico che salva le banche non tocca le caste e tutela i ricchi, non è cambiata proprio la situazione!!!) dobbiamo avere il coraggio di dire sono italiano sono nel Medioevo ma prima o poi la luce tornerà… Forse….».

M.: «Ribaltando la frittata: per caso ha lei una domanda per noi?»

D.V. «Mi invitate.? Occhio perche io vengo! :)»

… and I’m back.

I know, I’m a bad blogger. Why the three-months silence? Any guess folks? No, I wasn’t on rehab to recover from my macarons/chocolate addiction. I simply had, ehm, a pretty complicated life to deal with. You know, complicated relationship with the husband, changing job, traveling to Paris – London – New York, attending presentation of friends who are (real) writers, those kind of things. And despite all the possibilities that the modern “being always connected” can give (no iPad for me… yet) I never really felt I “had” to deliver a piece or a thought or something because “I had to”. So, here I am, back again, because I sense now that urge that made me wanted to have a blog.
This afternoon I attended a catwalk in a very cute greenhouse. I have to admit I wasn’t really paying attention to the défilé because my eyes were cought by the décor which was already heavily Xmas oriented. It’s just me or in a couple of years the Xmas tales will be broadcasted by the end of September? I understand the economic meltdown and the need to bust the economy but, seriously, how far this Xmas-business is going to go? And more importantly, how can I escape from all kind of fatigues that this holiday involve? Suggestions are welcome!

 

And today’s song is —- The Charlestones – She Was a Firework

 

 

Barcelona’s filaments

What can be worst than a business trip that brings you in a great city (well, many but that’s another story) for your first time — ever –, for less than 24 hours most of wich you have spent in offices breathing A/C rather than being on the ramblas enjoying the vibe?  Now I finally get what people like about the city.  It’s relaxed, it’s cool, it’s contemporary.  Even while I was working I could feel its life in the air, the energy running underneath the building I was in.  I felt I belonged to the environment at a point where I didn’t felt bad eating a (damn) good Japanese dinner without missing something more “traditional”. Let’s the tourists have that.   Visiting the Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família by night with a man that does trading in fashion and funeral honours seemed perfectly normal to me. So despite the fact that Spain is in the middle of a big economical crisis, civil guerrilla, risking bankruptcy I believe Spain is a country that sooner or later will have me as permanent guest. I felt good, I felt nice, I felt myself. And that’s something.

 

Not to mention that once a year the Sónar festival take place…

When in Rome

Ok, let’s be honest here, Woody‘s last movie was a total failure, a superficial, banal and full of stereotypes kind of movie lacking the irony and scathing satire present in most Italian postwar cinema and – the worst part – Rome’s beauty is not quite enough to hide its clichés.  So people, skip the movie and come here, in Rome, the real and only one, which is noting like the Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas.  Rome it’s power, it’s History, it’s strength.  But it’s also where the past casts its heavy shadows over everything. It’s like a rotting giant that still hasn’t drawn his last breath yet, blowing everywhere its mortal breath. But, at a certain point of the day, this dazzling sun goes down turning everything into gold and, for a moment, everything comes back to life. And it’s magic.  It’s a feeling you’ll never experience anywhere else.  Just here.  Just in this city with almost 3.000 yeas of history, layering quietly beneath your feet.

And suddenly you forgive and forget Romans’ rudeness, ignorance, overbearingness, coarseness, and essential crookedness.

But it’s just a fugitive moment, broken by some “ma va’ a mori’ ammazzato”***: Rome’s background music.

*** it’s a curse like “die you prick.”

And Rome it’s Antonello Venditti. Sorry for the undignified video…

 

Interviewing Debora Villa

So folks, here our first interveiw with a VIP!  Hope you will enjoy the humour of Debora Villa, a very popular comedian that recently released the book “Women chasing wolves. Everything you didn’t want to know about women that I can’t help but telling you.” for Cairo Publishing.

Mircea.  So, a book. Is this because you still believe into the piece of writing or it’s just a good marketing management of your popularity? And by the way, why the dog Latin chapters’ titles (which are a brainwave if you ask me, graduated in Humane Letters)?

Debora Villa. The choice is totally driven by my desire of doing so as everything I do. After the amazing success of my standup, we decided to put into a piece of writing our frenzy, widening chapters and contents. The dog Latins chapters’ titles are written by Antonio Amurri, who previously wrote “How to kill the wife and why.”

Mircea. Throughout the pages of your book, it seems that women are still looking for the Prince Charming to get settled, forever. Is this, still so rooted in our culture? Is all Walt Disney’s fault? And how should we get rid of it once and for all?

Debora Villa. Well, that’s a good question. To be honest I believe this quest is still really part of the culture of Italian women. So chronic that is causing deep, painful and apparently unsolvable frictions between the two genders. We wouldn’t be in such of a crisis if we didn’t have to uproot from our depths those archetypes. But we are working on that and, by the way, men too are tired of being asked and expected to play the knight’s role.  Time for the change has finally come… Yes girls, we can!

Mircea.  I was really perplexed by your description of the “groper”‘s accident. That is a real sexual harassment why did you write to have acted in such of a bland way?  Isn’t that some kind of legitimation for man to “try”, leaving to women only the chamaleon’s strategy:  stay still and camouflaged hoping not to be spotted by the predator? why not a public dramatic humiliation of the felon such of a verbal exposure or, why not, an old good fashion slap on his face?  Don’t you think to pass a message of tolerance for this “bad habit”?

Debora Villa. Well, in my “real” life I’ve been unfortunate enough to meet a lot of “maniac” and I quote the word since some of them were really sick, and the other part were unpunished pigs believing to own the right to abuse. I reacted as you described and even more! Into the “book reality” I just closed those episodes with a funny line to be consistant with the book tone. I’m an activist, I’ve been supporting a non-profit organization focused on domestic violences and my social and civil engagement is costant.

Mircea. Here in US “How to be a woman” by Caitlin Moran is all the rages. Have you red it yet? and if so, what do you think?

Debora Villa. What a coincidence! I’m actually reading it now! To be honest I just red the first chapter about “Period” and “Pornography” and I found it reeeeeelly interesting! That Caitlin is a great woman. I believe she’s unhinging all the traditional values to set new ones. Can’t wait to read it all.

Mircea. How important is for you to be a comedian as a woman? What’s your goal apart from paying the rent and surviving among “veline” (cheap Berlusconi’s style starlets)?

Debora Villa. I’m from Milano’s suburbia (ghetto). “The Bronx” to be clear. I was lucky enough to have irony and self-deprecating humor otherwise I wouldn’t be alive. I’ve also been lucky enough to make a job out of it, which I love. As a matter of fact I tried many other jobs but I was always ill. I can’t do anything else but this. And it’s not easy, I swear, since I’m not a “daughter of” neither a “protegée.”  And I like make people laugh on serious things and on nonsenses. I will do this till I live. Well, I pay back the good luck I had doing a lot of charities so I do TV, radio & Co. but then I work for free contributing to the causes that are dear to me.

Mircea. Wardrobe seasonal changing… Why it’s supposed to be a woman’s thing and why men’s aren’t apparently unable to do it?

 Debora Villa. There are things that will never change…

Mircea. There’s this popolar joke on the web “People say that every women’s dream is to find Mr. Right. Bullocks! every woman’s dream is to stuff themselves without putting on a pound”.  What do you think?

Debora Villa. Well, I’d say that’s so true!

Mircea. On a recent interviview you said you’d like to travel. That means you’ll come and visit us, brain drain abroad?

Debora Villa. It would be wonderful to be able to travel and bringing with me “the performance”.  I’m working on a French translation and I’m considering an English version too… I’m finally open to give it a try and I’m definetly willing to travel around the world.

Mircea. Abroad our reputations as Italian has never been this low, thanks to our politicians that did a great job promoting themselves as womanizer, pharisee, tax dodger, devoted to nepotism and so on (ex. Bossi’s jr. false degree). What do you suggest us to not be ashamed while walking around?

Debora Villa.  We have to own it and take control of it! If we are still allowing those people to run the Country, well, we have to say “I’m Italian, I live in the Middle Age but I’m sure that at a certain point the Renaissance will be back. Not that this “Govern of Technicians” is better with its saving banks, politician caste and rich people…

Mircea. Turning the tide: do you have a question for us?

Debora Villa. Why don’t you invite me to visit you?  whatch out… I may come

 

OCA DEL RE

 

 

Nostalgia vs. Design

Nostalgia, according to the etymology, is the acute pain/desire to go back home (Antient Greek “nostos“: return home + “algos“: pain). Well, despite my living abroad I never felt this sentimental longing. For some reason I’m happier, more relaxed, even nicer to people. Not that UK, USA, or France are the Eden of my dreams but it’s where I feel that anything could happen if I want to and this feeling is priceless as fresh air to me, for everything else there’s Mastercard as they say. Drinking an iced skinny latte*** from the local coffe shop (run by indie guys all tatoo and eco-friendly goods) while strolling down at the weekly market (which, btw, is not full with chinese crap) browsing its hand-made bread, ice bream, cheese, ravioli or clothing is an experience almost too simple and fullfilling to describe.

But back to reality and killing snobbery I recently came across to another kind of bitchiness: the design bitch. She works for a middle weight design brand, she dresses only designer clothing (more likely bought at the sample sales where she is always able to squeeze in), she usually has long bleached hair and has this attitude that she’s right jumping the queue at the aperitivo table because she has business to do after having grabbed two glasses of prosecco–one for herself and the other for the very important person she’s with; so people, you are standing in her way, just move or she’s going literally and phisically to move YOU. Design bitch watch your back!  I don’t know how that happened! I never spilled my wine on other’s people cocktail dress!  Untill now. God I love design!

*** iced skinny latte: half mug full with ice + half cup of skim milk + 1 shot of espresso. Stir. Ready to drink.

 

Hello, Hell!

Hell yeah, the bloggers’ world give me its very first satisfaction: I probably have found my pen soulmate.  She’s got a sharp tongue, she’s vitriolic, sarcastic, scathing and dangerously hilarious.  Well, she’s me a decade ago.

So folks, I’m not alone anymore! For my entire life I always knew I was different: not baptized in a Catholic boarding school, tiny in a world of giants, studying lover in a society that promotes and supports just the clubbing philosophy*.  Basically a misfit.  So, of course I developed since an early age this, ehm, how can I call it?  bitching attitude?  The worst part is that If I dislike someone I can’t help if not showing it right to his face.  Have you dr. House in mind?  Well, something like that minus the sociopath aspect.  But voilà, suddenly here’s it comes “La Zitella Acida** to enlighten my gloomy days! Yes, that’s the name she picked as her nom de plume.

When I was reading one of her posts, I came across to the following caption under one of Kelly Osbourne’s post diet pictures “Drop dead minter!”, and it was love at first sight reading. Since then I religiously read all her posts, having lot of fun and comfort because someone is talking it loud and is not afraid to do so.  Just like me.

So drop dead Franca Sozzani and that hypocritical Harvard speech of yours!

* yes, I hate discos.

** could be translated as “crabby old maid”. Take a look of her blog www.matiseivista.com/

 

Picture courtesy of Sesame Street

Anger management – part 1

Tonight I shouldn’t write because I’m upset. Very upset.  But since I’ve grown up I don’t stuff myself anymore with Nutella  (the most über-powerful anti-depressive EVER, I’ve heard that ingredients had being studied by CIA). No, now I’ve just found another way to be a masochist: I share my feelings with the net, so with YOU unknown reader, who must think I’m some kind of last-chance-wannabe Anna dello Russo-the-Sartorialist admirer.  Well, first of all I hate Anna dello Russo.  We have Anna Piaggi – and trust me, it’s already enough –and nobody urge to have another old woman dressing with simply stupid mises. But since even the fashion system has some kind of self adjustment laws, for which you can’t have two exhibitionists on the same country, the system itself tried to push her (or, export as they say Italian style) in the USA, finding another way to help our export score. But poor Anna didn’t know that the USA were already taken by Daphne Guinness, the beer heiress that has nothing better to do but spending money on otherwise unwearable haute couture clothing, calling herself a muse and getting naked into Barney’s shop windows. Well, well, well, getting started on rich and weird (and useless) old ladies obsessed by fashion actually helped me forgetting for a little why I’m upset.  And now I’m afraid you want to know why I am upset.   Well, I’m upset simply because my boss it’s a jerk.  Voilà! What has he done?  You may wonder.  What has he done?! Who told you it’s a “he”?  I share with very few people around the world the very unique gift of having tree bosses (two man and a woman) and two mothers in laws.  Lucky me, uh?  I bet none of you has five people at their service with the only purpose of driving them crazy.  So, long story short, tonight two of my bosses in a very formal and courteous meeting informed me that, well, they are forced (I mean “forced”) to cut my hours since the present situation suggested so.  After that announcement every form of insult in every language I know crossed my mind but — and I’m very proud of myself — in a NON-Italian way I managed to stay calm, with a blank expression, and with all the remaining forces out of my Chthonic self, politely managing the situation trying to get the best out of it.  How very adult, you may consider.  How very adult my ****!  I could kill with my very own hands now!

ToBeContinued

 

P.S.  The writing on the picture is ancient Greek saying “know thyself” and it was written on the entrance at the temple of Apollo at Delphi.  And if you don’t Apollo nor Delphi, you should read more, darling!

The first one

So, this is the very first post in English.

To all my worldwide English-speaker friends, please, be kind with me for all the mistakes I’m going to do.  Despite my love for studiyng, reading, listening and so on there are still things that I’m unable to use correctly. But you all, out there, point out every single oversight, misunderstanding, incorrect pun I may make.  I have to confess that I learned English, well, American English (yes, there are big differences between UK and US English, let’s be honest) only when I moved to New York; till then I was an happy “just”-French-speaker.  It took me a little while before being able to actually speak, about six months, during that interregnum I’ve been blushing every single time a clerk was asking if needed something or a waiter if I wanted more coffee, stuttering every single word.  But at the end that moment, THAT moment arrived:  when the words came out of my mouth without thinking, automatically and it was magic. I was going up and down Manhattan trying to find fences – yes, fences – for my very wild and smashed backyard but apparently the so-called very helpful customer care desk at Home Depot were all trying to drive me crazy, sending me here and there by chance. So after my third stop at the Third Avenue store, when the clerk assured me that in that particular branch in Queens (!!!) there were actually fences available out of season (then I learned that fences are actually a seasonal product!) I suspiciously looked at the man and abruptly asked:”For sure or for maybe?”  I know, I know it’s not a very memorable scene but at the time it looked like I had achieved the top of the understanding-and-speaking-right-away slippery and tricky hill.  And that was my first achievement.  After a bit of time I was sure that my mastering a third language had improved when I was able to deal with customer care (of any kind) by phone.  But that’s another story.

Please, don’t go

 

Proprio nei giorni in cui tutto sembra che ti cada addosso, proprio quando hai perso il conto delle cose che devi fare-sbrigare-ricordare-ricordargli capita un evento fuori contesto, qualcosa che sbalestra il tuo rodato self absorbed bioritmo post-moderno. Un’amica che parte. Se ne va. O, meglio, torna a casa. Ma quando casa corrisponde con San Francisco, il fatto che ella scompaia dal tuo quotidiano ha qualcosa di inaccettabile. Come un lutto. Ancora non mi capacito di come such an American girl sia sopravvissuta a Milano per quasi tre lustri e di come sia inesorabilmente ancora innamorata dell’Italia. Oppure sì, forse perché capisco  – avendo vissuto molto all’estero – mi sono chiari i motivi che all’improvviso possano aver preso il sopravvento. Così, ex abrupto. Solo, ad un certo punto, il quadro nel quale sei in prestito, che adori, che ammiri, non è più sufficiente. Hai necessità di tornare nel quadro a cui appartieni. Sapere tuttavia di non avere più un pezzo della “mia” America qua vicino, mi fa sentire ancora più lost in translation di quanto già non mi senta. Recentemente Hilary – che è una Scrittrice Pubblicata (categoria di cui mi occuperò ad un certo punto) – ha scritto un simpatico post nel quale descrive le cose che le mancheranno di più, enumerando fra queste un dentifricio. Curioso. Un’altra amica, che vive in un lussuoso appartamento in Tribeca (NYC), mi ha spesso incaricato di spedirgliene di vagonate della stessa marca. Lei sa benissimo che potrebbe trovarlo da Bigelow*** ma preferisce riceverlo direttamente da casa mia. La capisco, io continuo a chiedere di ricevere peanut butter cups di una celebre marca di dolciumi industriali (Hershey’s) ad una povera amica costretta a spedizioni improbabili, è un po’ come se a noi chiedessero di spedire in Australia dei cioccolatini Kinder. Per capire il livello di profondo sconforto emozionale che un trasloco intercontinentale è in grado di provocare. Anche oggi, anche nell’epoca del 2.0, nei giorni in cui tutto sembra facile – se sei un turista – il trasferimento in un altro paese è ancora un’impresa. Sei in un altro paese. Non sei nel tuo paese. Tutto è diverso e non necessariamente friendly. È anche tutto nuovo ed esaltante e questo, per un po’, serve da anestetico contro i sicuri disagi ai quali andrai incontro; tuttavia, da che ti alzi al mattino a che ti corichi la sera, sei sola con te stessa in un altro universo, sotto un altro cielo. E questo, solo chi l’ha vissuto lo può capire. Così, ad un certo momento, out of the blue, ti coglie il sacro fuoco del rientro (no, a me non è capitato questo, NdR) e non gli puoi resistere, è come se ti mancasse l’aria, come se tutto ciò che ti circonda perdesse senso. Peccato che lei è parte di quel circondario che mi circonda(va) e saperla lontana mi rattrista.

So, HBW please, come back.

M*

*** lussuosa profumeria nel West Village di New York, celebre per la qualità dei prodotti in vendita e rinomata per l’offerta di prodotti, al punto da diventare modo di dire: “WHEN YOU CAN’T FIND IT ANYWHERE ELSE… CALL BIGELOW”

 

Incipit

 

Killing Snobbery. Che nome è mai questo? Vi chiederete. Noi due, le Autrici,

abbiamo deciso di intraprendere una battaglia personale contro tutto ciò che è di cattivo gusto, volgare, ipocrita, pacchiano: snob appunto, cioè sine nobilitate. No, non siamo nobili, se è questo che vi state chiedendo, come se solo i ranghi di sangue blu potessero occuparsi di tale argomento. Siamo due borghesi – sì, lo ammettiamo con una punta d’orgoglio –  folgorate dalla frase di Dostojewski: la bellezza salverà il mondo. In una novella società italica che non conosce il sentimento della vergogna, siamo convinte che i buoni modi, l’educazione, il rispetto e la nobiltà d’animo siano ingredienti fondamentali nella costruzione di una società più bella. La nostra è una rivolta reazionaria dunque, armate di bon ton vinceremo la guerra contro il modello imperante: il burino arrogante fieramente ignorante.

Siamo due anarchiche della mediocrità.

KillingSnobbery Manifesto

 

Ci si potrebbe chiedere perché due giovini di belle speranze decidano di aprire un blog.

Non ce n’è forse in abbondanza — là fuori — nel mondo virtuale della rete?

La risposta è che sì, di blog ce ne sono fin troppi ma nessuno e – ripetiamo – nessuno è o sarà mai come questo:

irriverente, ironico, auto-ironico, bon ton ma non troppo.

Intanto a scriverlo siamo noi, Cenerentole del 2012, maritate a Principi Azzurri che somigliano sempre  più all’Olandese Volante.

Siamo come il diavolo e l’acqua santa, con ruoli allegramente intercambiabili a seconda dell’umore.

Una di noi con prole, l’altra felicemente sprovvista di progenie; belle fuori e dentro; l’una con la valigia sempre pronta  in vista dell’ennesimo trasloco, l’altra freneticamente in bilico fra la Milano-da-bere e la sopravvivenza domestica.

Entrambe con famiglie allargate popolate da fauna e flora, muschi e licheni, non sempre piacevoli.

Entrambe francesi dentro e biondo-rosse fuori.

Entrambe innamorate della scrittura, delle belle cose e delle buone maniere riviste e corrette in chiave 2.0, ma ancor più della conoscenza e di tutto ciò che è fermento culturale.

Ci accomuna il pensiero fuori dagli schemi ma detestiamo i refusi. Abbiamo un debole per Marni e amiamo incondizionatamente le edizioni Adelphi.

Naturalmente abbiamo aperto questo blog nella speranza che la signora Consuelo diventi nostra fan e che l’Editore ci metta in catalogo.

La frequenza dei nostri post? Giornaliera ovviamente! A volte in inglese, affinché i nostri amici sparsi sull’orbe terracqueo non si perdano il piacere di leggerci. Ospiteremo, in una sezione dedicata del blog, amici scrittori, amici direttori creativi, amici sensibili, amici sopra le righe e cervelli variamente in fuga, con un occhio di riguardo alle amiche.

Saremo politicamente scorrettissime e se offenderemo la sensibilità di qualcuno, beh, è il bello del blog bellezza!

© Poland Pavillion at the Venice Biennale 2010