Woke up on Saturday morning curled up with the sweet NYU boy and the little dog tangled in our feet. It felt good to feel him there. We walked west to meet my lawyer. It was a great meeting. We connected. Looking forward to this project.
Lunch with Federico then we all headed to the Cristobal Balenciaga show at the Spanish Institute curated by Hamish Bowles. Dan joined us there. Very well attended show. Many, many old ladies in mink coats and equal numbers of gay men including that really camp boy Austin Scarlet from Project Runway.
BALENCIAGA: Spanish Master is the first exhibition to consider the impact of Spain’s culture, history and art on one of its greatest twentieth-century sons, the legendary designer Cristóbal Balenciaga (1895-1972). Hailed as “Fashion’s Picasso” by Cecil Beaton, Balenciaga’s innovations transformed the way women dressed, from the opening of his Paris fashion house in 1937 until his retirement in 1968. His visionary designs and impeccable standards seduced generations of the best-dressed women in the world.
Separated over two floors in three rooms this exhibition could have been delightful but sadly…wasn’t. There were simply too many beautiful costumes crammed into two badly lit rooms. The descriptive captions were almost unreadable and the ‘influences’ we were promised were hard to divine.
There were some very beautiful dresses. Some really pretty hats. Wonderful beading and embroidery. The black and white film of the fashion show on the top floor was interesting because most of the pieces looked so frumpy and the women in the audience were smoking.
Cab home. After the show Aaron and I lay on the sofa and napped.
All the while I am having a huge kerfuffle with some man making comments on my blog. I took down all of the comments and my replies.
He was trying to persuade me that I was clinically insane but all of the ‘symptoms’ he used to convince me of my insanity seemed perfectly reasonable coping mechanisms for the unusual, the addict and the high achievers.
I am not striving any time soon to be NORMAL. I am not striving to hang with NORMAL people…what or who ever they are?
I certainly don’t want to end up in crippling mediocrity…in some clap board home in River Ville filled with furniture a bed bug wouldn’t bother infesting.
Dinner with Ian Drew. A young lady asked if I was famous. I told her that I thought maybe she was confusing me with some other guy. She wasn’t convinced.
Dinner on Friday night with Ian Drew at Essex and Beauty. Large, noisy new restaurant..a bit too blingy for me but the food was excellent and paid for by the restaurant.
Try the steak tartare on the thick, tasty rice cake.
After dinner we went to a miserable East Village gay bar where men sat beside each other trying to snag other men elsewhere on Grindr. Their faces lit up by LED screens causing them all unwittingly, with their ghostly green visage, to look like that Ingres portrait of Napoleon.
Ian finished his drink. We left.
It has been startlingly cold. I love the cold. I get to dress up! Hats, hats, hats. Coats, waistcoats, velvet scarves. I love my burgundy velvet scarf. Last night I wore my Dior cape. It did not pass unnoticed.
Dressed accordingly, the Little Dog and I, walked to Soho House and began to write my film. Then, oddly, I had another really great idea for a film (or novel) inspired by my new, young HIV friend. It gushed onto the page like a waterfall. First, second and third act. Beginning, middle and the end.
Met and flirted with Brendan Fallis who is super cute. Steam room buddy.
Even though I am having a great time, I still irrationally fear bumping into Jake. Consequently there is something utterly ruined about these New York streets. Like after a blitz or something. Strewn with emotional rubble.
There seems to be a Jake clone on every corner and every time I see a man who looks like him I shudder.
I think of the special moments we shared here. Making love in the Jane Hotel. Reaching out and touching him in the street. Kissing him for the first time this time last year in the back of that bar on Third Avenue. Then the sadness comes. The questions, the feeling that I have been punched in the stomach.
If I’m hurt…can you imagine how badly that girl feels that he deceived for 7 years? Poor love. I hope she got herself back on her feet. Found somewhere nice to live…met a nice guy. She’s lucky she escaped. If he was beginning to do meth when I met him he’ll be HIV positive in no time at all. What a fucking cliché.
Hurt people, hurt people.
Yet, I exist in two completely different spheres. The reality of my life outweighs the fantasy.
As if to prove a point I had dinner with Federico, my artist friend from Palermo. We ate at Westville. The food came late but the conversation was very lively so it didn’t seem to matter. Then, my NYU poet friend Anthony joined us and we headed west to meet Hamish Bowles.
Hamish greeted me warmly. We’d met a couple of times many years ago.
Hamish is the real deal. The man Patrick Kinmonth and Issie Blow wished they could have been.
My fantasy about Hamish: that he went to Eton, life served effortlessly to him….couldn’t be further from the truth.
We actually had rather a lot in common. He too lived in Kent during his formative years. Went to a grammar school in Canterbury. We would have been knocking about Canterbury at exactly the same time…probably both very horny gay teenagers wondering where we could get cock.
Like Fenton Bailey he succeeded in spite of everything. In spite of his difference.
Hamish is primarily an academic, but his glamorous day job is the European Editor at Large for Vogue. He is a respected authority on both worlds of fashion and interior design.
In April 2001 he was appointed creative consultant at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, with responsibility for organizing and mounting the internationally renowned and critically acclaimed Costume Institute Exhibition, “Jacqueline Kennedy: The White House Years—Selections from the John F. Kennedy Library Museum”.
Hamish has a huge collection of haute couture that he lends to museums and galleries all over the world. The Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Fashion Institute of Technology, and The Museum of the City of New York in Manhattan; the Palais Galliera and The Musee de la Mode, the Victoria & Albert Museum and the Museum of London in London among others.
Recently he curated the Cristóbal Balenciaga show at The Spanish Institute. Opened by Queen Sofía of Spain entitled, “Balenciaga: Spanish Master,” the show examines the work of Cristóbal Balenciaga and his Spanish influences. 60 pieces of clothing and accessories including some from Hamish’s own collection and many unseen publicly before.
I am going to see the show on Tuesday.
We discussed Cary Fukunaga’s Jane Eyre, he had just seen at a private screening for Anna Wintour. You’ll remember that Jake and I met Cary this summer in Whitstable with Mia. Hamish said that, although a bit slow, he loved the film and cried all the way through. He reported that the costumes were perfect and historically accurate. He said that Mia’s performance was excellent.
Discussed Michael Bessman’s house that once belonged to the Baron de Meyer.
I cried all the way home. I couldn’t help myself.
I should be really happy. Deep down I am. I just need to learn how to consistently mine the joy I know is there.