After almost two months of not seeing the sun and living through constantly overcast skies, things are finally starting to brighten up here in Paris, and it’s made a crazy difference in my life. I’m seriously considering relocating during the winter months to a warmer climate—this year taught me a crazy lesson in seasonal depression.
Maybe it was daylight savings time this weekend (NOTE—Oops, it took me a while to figure out that DST doesn’t happen here until next week. I was off by an hour for a whole day!), but all of a sudden I feel like things are moving really quickly, almost in such a way that I feel like I’m already at the finish line (wherever that may be) looking back. This past week went by in a flash. My parents were in town, which meant living on an intense tourist schedule, ushering them around the Louvre and through the crowded streets of Montmartre, plus getting us to London for the weekend and back. Exhausting! This visit was weird because it was really the first time I’d ever hosted my parents and been living in a world that was entirely different from theirs … Keep reading »
As much as American girls may complain about the state of dating, sex, courtship, and guys, at least we can read the signals on our own home turf. (Whether we want to believe them is a different matter.)
But over here in Paris, where the word “dating” literally does not exist in the French vocabulary, understanding male/female relationships is all the more confusing. The issue here is that French men and romance are traditionally stereotyped (just like American women, or any romantic situations for that matter). The way things are “supposed to be”: If a French dude kisses you, it means he’s fallen for you, and there’s no pretense, and a week later you’re buying toothbrushes for each other and making love to accordion music on a bed of croissants. But, when things don’t magically become this clear-cut, the confusion sets in, and there’s no rhyme or reason to actions because … well, there’s no standard dating code of conduct.
Where this leaves me at the moment is wondering if I got the brush-off, or what comes next (if there even is a “next”). Keep reading »
It took me three days to come up with a witty and grammatically correct text to send to Scrappy Bathroom Boy (not the best nickname I realize), the guy I’d met at the Prescription Cocktail Club last Saturday. Why is it so hard to find my personality in this language? I wondered as I made revision after revision of the message in French. Finally, on Tuesday, I trashed my drafts and went for something simple and direct: “It was nice meeting you. Sorry, I just wasn’t up for the late night thing last Saturday, but would have liked to join you and your friends. If you want, maybe we can get a drink sometime this week.” Phew! My heart raced as I sent it off. I couldn’t help holding back a smile at the thought of finally going on a date. When was the last time I had been on one? It had to be early November with American Boy. November. Jesus. Keep reading »
In the wrong place at the right time: A new fashion exhibit lauding the work of Dior comes just in time for Paris Fashion Week (it begins next week), but finds itself at the Musée du Président Jacques Chirac in Sarran, a good 300 miles south of the fashion capital. The show, “Dior: The Creative Passion,” looks tres cool and covers the couture house through its history, taking a look back at the iconic dresses, sketches, and perfume bottles, as well as tracking the progression of head designers (starting with Yves Saint-Laurent up to today’s John Galliano). We’d love to get lost in this exhibit and fall into a make-believe world, getting as close as possible to feeling what it would be like to live in Dior. (That way, we wouldn’t have to rob the Madison Avenue boutique for the experience.) Check out more images after the jump. [WWD] Keep reading »
In France, there’s a metrosexual common denominator—all males seem to come out of the womb in bespoke suits and are born with an encyclopedic knowledge of style and culture. But the real men use this super macho anti-wrinkle pen product from L’Oréal. That’s right, dudes get wrinkles, too, and the way they combat them is through phallic-like devices encased in tough ice and supercharged with vitamin C and caffeine. The L’Oréal Men Expert Hydra Energetic Bille Glacé Yeux (they want to give you a mouthful, huh?) is a portable rolling pen that dispenses a cooling substance which aids in the reduction of fine lines and makes you look less tired. Don’t believe any dude would actually use this? Meet three L’Oréal men on the product’s microsite … Keep reading »
Americans may be diet-obsessed, but we’ve got nothing on French women. When American Vogue publishes a weight loss article, you won’t hear the end of it for months. But in France, pick up any popular women’s fashion magazine, and you’ll find there’s at least one diet-focused feature without fail. Oftentimes, these publications don’t even try to attempt fake-holistic attitudes towards health. Take, for example, French Elle‘s review of the ridiculous Forking Diet, where you can only consume foods meant to be eaten with a fork.
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Je suis désolée. I’m sorry. I spent some time last week reading my posts from the past two months and realized that, well, I’ve been a complete Debbie Downer lately. This is the supposedly adventurous life of some girl in Paris??? I thought as I clicked through. Sure, the whole Alex fiasco was definitely a dramatic romance, but looking back at my words, I saw how I was missing everything around me. My waking up was in part prompted by a random IM from an acquaintance back in NYC. An older man with whom I’ve always had a guiltily flirtatious rapport with. When I told him I’d been a bit down lately, he almost berated me. “You have to have adventures. You are so free now. You’ll see: later, there will be no time for this type of stuff. You need to just go places and see things.” For a moment this made me depressed. As if I were barreling headfirst towards this place of older age and responsibility, and was already regretting not being more fun right now. But then I saw that he was right. Why do we spend so much of our lives living in the future? Or lingering in the past? Why does it never occur to you to just not think too much about things? (Well, because it’s really hard to do this, but it shouldn’t be.) That day, I made two swift decisions. Keep reading »
“I think today might be the one day of the year where it’s socially acceptable to get wasted alone,” I wondered aloud as Emily and I walked past some heart-shaped decorations in the window of one of the many anonymous-looking Chinese restaurants lining the streets of Belleville. It was Sunday, Valentine’s Day, and we’d spent the morning in yoga class and were now walking back to the metro together.
“Awww,” she said, consolingly. “Well, I think Valentine’s Day is kind of like New Year’s. Usually a letdown. But totally, you can drink.”
“Maybe I will. Maybe I’ll cook something nice too,” I said, immediately reflecting on the guilty secret that has been my life for the past few weeks: working in bed for most of the day, reluctantly dragging myself out into the cold to find a pathetic dinner of baguette and cheese or yogurt and cereal. It made me remember that I’ve been so lazy lately that I hadn’t bothered to do the dishes after most of these meals, and that my apartment was a complete disaster zone.
We walked on in silence, both ostensibly sad because of the lovers’ holiday. Me, because I’m completely alone. Emily, alone as well because her boyfriend lives in Spain. At that point, it seemed only natural that, yes, I’d cook tonight, and Emily should come over so that we could have a girls’ night, drink some champagne, and feel sorry for ourselves. I felt relief because the thing is, I’ve never had any feelings about V-Day before, but this year felt like a slap in the face because last year, I’d spent it with Alex … Keep reading »