Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Culture Vulture September

Last week, I joined as an ICA member. I was far too excited to get my hands on these events in September through advanced sale, and thought it was worth it. Shame that I've only got one ticket to each event, I'd love some company but it's always ending up begging people to go or my friends are too skint.

I've already took advantage of my membership and booked these within the hours, I can't wait for these:

Douglas Coupland on What Words Look Like
Thursday, 3rd September

Douglas Coupland has always been one of my favourite modern writers, not just because he's Canadian. He captures the IT generation quite well, although thought JPod was a bit smug but his characters were always so interesting.

Tuesday, 8th September

I've been waiting to see this documentary for AGES! AGES! A documentary on a typeface! How amazing is that? And best thing was, there was a deal with Douglas Coupland talk, film was discounted! yay!

David Mitchell and Robert Webb on the Death of Television
Friday, 18th September

I love the Peep Show. Thank God for my membership prior tickets, because this show is now sold out! I can't wait for this!

I'm actually quite interested in going to the Joe Sacco talk as well, that's at the end of September. Will decide as the date comes closer.

Monday, 3 August 2009

Film: Coco Avant Chanel *****

It’s Kirsty’s birthday today. Everyone forgot to make or bring their Spanish themed dish for the lunch party we were hosting for her. I was the only one who brought a dish – Gazpacho (will post recipe tomorrow). So, boss decided we all go out for lunch instead. We went to the local cafĂ©, which serves both English and Thai food. The owner Richard is English, they make excellent builder breakfast and a good strong cuppa, his wife is Thai, and she makes authentic delicious Thai curries. The lunch was good, but I was quite annoyed that it has totally blown my budget for the week with the present, my hour off for not working and ingredients to make the gazpacho for the entire office.

I had to waste time at Westfield before going to the Barbican screening for “Coco avant Chanel” at 20:45. Bad idea. Sales on and not feeling great = retail therapy. To pay respect to Chanel screening, I dressed up Chanel-esque – I had my hair up, red lipa ¾ sleeve thin black and white striped bodycon dress, a black and gold Chanel like tweed jacket and loads of pearls. As I was walking through the mall, I had one of those Carrie Bradshaw moments where one of the strands of the pearl broke. I froze as I watched the faux pearls scattered to the floor like heavy raindrops. It was a tragically beautiful moment. Not quite sure what to do, I was too embarrassed to get on all fours to collect the pearls, the lady next to me who witnessed it not sure what to do neither. She smiled at me as I said, “so… that’s that.” I managed to savage some of the pearls left on the necklace, good thing that I make jewellery I can get extra to make and re-chain it.

***** France. 105 min. Colour 2008. Directed by Anne Fontaine. @ 8:45 pm The Babican Cinema 1 E13.

I arrived just in time at the Barbican as I was a bit late and had to find where Cinema 1 was, it’s a maze that place. The theatre was pretty full, mostly women of course, the Trojan gays, and a few who got dragged along by their girlfriends. The film was absolutely stunning! I’m not saying it because I love French films and Audrey Tautou. The clothes, ahhh the clothes in the film were just stunning, even the young Gabrielle Chanel’s crochet shoulder cape she wore at the orphanage was carefully designed. And of course, Stephen Jones designed all the hats in the film, including Chanel’s first millinery shop. I loved the story of Gabrielle, especially the tragic love affair between Coco and Arthur "Boy" Capel and how she transformed to Coco Chanel. The ending was a bit rushed I thought, everything was quite slow moving leading up to Capel’s car accident then she suddenly she was rolling out fabrics and next thing you know there were models coming off stairs for a fashion show. I must admit too, the models and their hair and make-up were too modern looking. I thought the film was well captured on how she has developed her own sense of style, how she revolutionise fashion in France and the major inspirations to her signature key looks: the Chanel jacket, the stripes, the signature Peter Pan collar black and white dress and of course, and of course, the LBD – the Little Black Dress.

The film made me wonder on the topic on love and marriage, as it was one of the occurring themes. Coco said, "the best part about love is the making love." She vowed that she would marry no one as her mother married because of love, who also later suicided because her father's infidelity and his abandonment of her and her siblings. In her society, marriage was to gain social status, real love was through love affairs. When a couple is in love, does the label of someone's "girlfriend" or "wife" matters? To me it does. Sure, love affair has the attraction of danger, thrill, lust, the unattainable love, the longing and all the other exciting bits. Marriage to me is sacred (I know, I'm old fashion), it's a life time commitment of love. Of course, one doesn't get married to get divorced but at the same time, one shouldn't married for financial and social status gain. Is marriage just a business contract?

One day I'll sleep

I've been insomniac for about two weeks now, or if I finally can sleep I get awaken easily then have trouble falling back to sleep again. Last night, I was so tired after leaving Kirsty's birthday drink but as soon I laid in my bed, I was wide awake until 5:40am after watching the last of "How I Met Your Mother" and many episodes of "30 Rock".

I don't feel present for the past few weeks, my head was elsewhere during work (it's been quite boring anyway but good thing work is slowly flowing in), I haven't run for ages, I've even lost interest in my religious Body Blast.

At yoga, I found myself hard to concentrate although the meditations helped me a lot and I felt much cleansed afterwards. I hope the regular yoga teacher comes back soon, she was more intense. I quite enjoyed the London Bridge one, Norman, but his class was a bit more physically demanding and it's a different type of yoga than I'm used to.

I need something inspiring and exciting.

I had a good day today though, made some bacon and eggs for breakfast with toast and my perfect cup of cappuccino made from my favourite Italian Moka Press – complete with foamed hot milk and sprinkling of cocoa and cinnamon. Then I cleaned my room a bit, have to seriously sort out my closet, did about half and gave up. It was surprisingly sunny today, thought it was a waste to spend indoors cleaning – okay, so it was really procrastination – I grabbed my tartan picnic mat and went to the park to finish reading "The Book Thief" by Markus Zusak. I thought it was an appropriate book when I took it along to my trip to Budapest, though the book was set in Germany but it was based on the Second World War and the Holocaust. It was a lovely story, I had to hold back my tears a bit towards the end. I always enjoy reading the last bit of a novel the most, and how you let out a big sigh after finish reading the last sentence of the book. Wonder what I should read next?

It's pretty late now, I should attempt to go to bed. I had some Valarian tea, I feel tired but not sleepy. Tomorrow I shall go to the Barbican and will be watching "Coco Before Chanel", I'm quite excited and been looking forward for this film for a while.

Nite. x
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