Monday, 31 January 2011

{Random Acts of Kindness}

                                             Video by Todd Bieber

"If there was anything he (Makhaya) liked on earth, it was human generosity. It made life seem whole and sane to him. It kept the world from shattering into tiny fragments. Only a few, quietly spoken words: 'I'll stick my neck out for you.'" - Bessie Head, When Rain Clouds Gather
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Monday, 24 January 2011

{Partly because of my love for you, partly because of your love for yoghurt}

Frank O'Hara reading his poem, Having A Coke With You, which is one of my favourites:

It's the little details in this poem that speak to me: 'the fluorescent orange tulips around the birches'. It's a real poem about a real love.
is even more fun than going to San Sebastian, Irún, Hendaye, Biarritz, Bayonne
or being sick to my stomach on the Travesera de Gracia in Barcelona
partly because in your orange shirt you look like a better happier St. Sebastian
partly because of my love for you, partly because of your love for yoghurt
partly because of the fluoresent orange tulips around the birches
partly because of the secrecy our smiles take on before people and statuary
it is hard to believe when I'm with you that there can be anything as still
as solemn as unpleasantly definitive as statuary when right in front of it
in the warm New York 4 o'clock light we are drifting back and forth
between each other like a tree breathing through its spectacles

and the portrait show seems to have no faces in it at all, just paint
you suddenly wonder why in the world anyone ever did them
                                                                                                    I look
at you and I would rather look at you than all the portraits in the world
except possibly for the Polish Rider occasionally and anyway it's in the Frick
which thank heavens you haven't gone to yet so we can go together the first time
and the fact that you move so beautifully more or less takes care of Futurism
just as at home I never think of the Nude Descending a Staircase or
at a rehearsal a single drawing of Leonardo or Michelangelo that used to wow me
and what good does all the research of the Impressionists do them
when they never got the right person to stand near the tree when the sun sank
or for that matter Marino Marini when he didn't pick the rider as carefully
as the horse
                            it seems they were all cheated of some marvellous experience
which is not going to go wasted on me which is why I am telling you about it

-Frank O'Hara
As a special treat, have a listen to the delectable Don Draper (Jon Hamm's character in Mad Men) reciting Mayakovsky - by the same poet. Such soothing tones!

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Sunday, 23 January 2011

{Wonder Woman}

Most definitely worth waking up for.

In the words of Monsieur Louboutin: 'You could outrun any villain in these supheroesque sneakers. Create your own comic book story as you run through the streets in this glimmering limited edition style.'

Now, where's my cape?
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Friday, 21 January 2011


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Wednesday, 19 January 2011

{Soul Men}

Those voices.
Mumford and Sons - Liar.

Paolo Nutini - No Other Way.

Bon Iver - Skinny Love.
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Monday, 17 January 2011

{What's Your Secret?}

PostSecret is a website started by Frank Warren, exhibiting 'secrets' put to paper (postcards to be precise) and sent in by the general public. Turns out the general public has a lot to hide! Some are haunting, some angry and some depressing. Others, however, will warm the cockles of your heart.

Updated weekly, this website is one reason why I wake up on a Sunday. (Others include: bacon sandwiches with lashings of ketchup; dress code = pyjamas and socks; tea and toast in bed; meticulous discussion of Saturday night's revelry; Sunday afternoon walks.)

Here are some of my favourite secrets, all from the website:

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Sunday, 16 January 2011

{Live La Vie En Rose}

Listen to Carla Bruni on repeat, especially this gem.

Be blunt and brash with someone, and then charm your way out of an awkward situation.

Ride your bicycle (wicker basket and flowers optional) down to a river and skip stones.

Identify your unique joie de vivre.

Have a pique-nique on your living room floor. Baguette. Cheese. Red wine. Macaroons. Bon Appétit!
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Saturday, 15 January 2011


Synesthesia, literally meaning joined perception, is a condition where people associate objects with a certain flavour, smell or colour. To use this term broadly, I am a happy victim of Synesthesia whenever I taste a particular gastronomical delight or smell a certain fragrance. Even the faintest hint of a flavour or smell will conjure up the image of an old friend's face in my mind, or a snapshot of a remarkable day. Here are my top 5 'Synesthesiastic' sensations:

1. Tomato soup, Ribena or Calpol. I'm really very ill. No school today. Please can I watch TV for just one hour, Mum?

2. Passion fruit sorbet. Gallivanting around Europe with my favourite travel companion. No care in the world, except where to get my next fix of this sweet nectar.

3. Regrettably or not, if blindfolded and held at gunpoint I could identify past loves by a quick sniff of the neck. Unfortunately, this uncanny knowledge of male fragrance leaves me with an overwhelming desire to accost strangers in the street with a thousand kisses. Or a cheeky slap around the face, it really depends.

4. Pimms. It's summer. I'm home. This one comes hand in hand with the smell of freshly cut grass.

5. Tiffany by Tiffany Eau De Parfum. I'm told this intoxicating fragrance is a blend of 'Jasmine, Orange, Iris, And Rose'. However, it isn't the particular combination that enthralls me so. This is the life-long perfume of my American grandmother. Separated by miles and miles of vast open water, one sniff of the good stuff never fails to bring her to my side.

Do share yours!
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Friday, 14 January 2011

{Unleash Your Inner Wild Child}

'The rules in my room: no fighting except if I say so' - Yours Truly

Maurice Sendak:
'Once a little boy sent me a charming card with a little drawing on it. I loved it. I answer all my children’s letters — sometimes very hastily — but this one I lingered over. I sent him a card and I drew a picture of a Wild Thing on it. I wrote, “Dear Jim: I loved your card.” Then I got a letter back from his mother and she said, “Jim loved your card so much he ate it.” That to me was one of the highest compliments I’ve ever received. He didn’t care that it was an original Maurice Sendak drawing or anything. He saw it, he loved it, he ate it.'
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Thursday, 13 January 2011

{Angus and Julia Stone}

Allow their honeyed voices to soothe your soul. (Image taken from here.)

Big Jet Plane

Just A Boy

Wedding Song

Saw them at this magical, magical gig just before Christmas.
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{Good Old-Fashioned Romance}

A little diamond in the rough of eligible bachelors, in blog 'To My Wife' John Januzzi regularly adds to the stockpile of notes for his future (as yet non-existent) spouse.

Sometimes funny:
EMBARRASSMENT I might be really drunk and scream love songs by Olivia Newton John at a very close distance. I’m sorry, but it’s coming from a good place.

Often chivalric:
SUBWAY TRAIN The seat is all yours.

Always sincere:
WHATEVER YOU LIKE My chick can have whatever she wants.

The notes come tinged with an impossible sense of nostalgia for the future, that could warm even the coldest of hearts.
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Wednesday, 12 January 2011

{Marisa - My Italian Alias}

Every person deserves a mysterious Italian name handpicked by a rambunctious and bellissimo bunch of Neapolitans. What's yours?
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{You Say It Best}

'And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it.'

Roald Dahl
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{AC: What He Wakes Up For}

Italian food, English friendship.
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{Exquisite Vocabulary}

Mamihlapinatapai: a look shared by two people with each wishing that the other will initiate something that they both desire but which neither one wants to start.

Awarded the coveted prize of 'most succinct word in the world'. Beautiful to say, beautiful to hear, and beautiful to experience.
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