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Saturday, October 31, 2009

Have a happy weekend, friends and lovers. Try not to get into too too too much trouble.

Love, Riff-Raff

Did Patric Walker murder Celeste for her column?

Patric Walker (the love of his life was his intimate friend actor Richard Chamberlain - whether Richard knows this precisely I couldn't say)

Further to my appreciation of Nicky Haslam's incomparable memoir Redeeming Features - the only thing that could make you want to have diarrhoea because it is the ultimate loo read (antiseptic Wet Ones at the ready, please) - I am distressed by two things on p108 on the subject of a very famous dead astrologer.

The late Patric Walker was the master stargazer of the late 20th century as well as actor Richard Chamberlain's most expressive admirer. Thanks to lucrative international syndication, and a socialising liver which sadly was not as robust as one might have wished, his constellation of sunsign frippery informed and entertained hundreds of millions of hopers. Yet, even though Patric was a Haslam intimate, a frequent companion in a basement club beneath Fortnum & Mason, in the company of pretty boys, Nicky misspells his name as Patrick. How Patric must be seething wherever. The omission of the k was special, part of the mythologising branding: had Patric been born Colin he would now be remembered as Coli,  a thought that brings back to mind antiseptic Wet Ones. Patric died of salmonella poisoning in 1995, by the way.

Nicky!  Please correct for the reprint!

Richard Chamberlain:
 a gratuitious inclusion in this piece

It doesn't end there. Nicky then goes onto suggest that Patric (a Libran) may have in 1974 murdered his octogenarian astrologer mentor Celeste  in order to grab her horoscopic column on Harpers & Queen (as was): he did this by pushing her down some stairs, it was rumoured. Celeste was the pseudonym of the American astrologer Helene Hoskins: she taught Patric everything she knew about the heavens. It could be that this "rumour" was part of the fun campery of the time: but who knows?

I certainly detected no homicidal tendencies in Patric when I interviewed him back in the 80s: indeed so taken was he by the sight of me he exited to the hotel bathroom and rejoined me in vain in his silky dressing gown. It was early afternoon. We talked of his chasing asses around his home in Lindos on the island of Rhodes. I think he said asses.

Show Me Some I.D.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Kicking the weekend off with a some of the new stuff from lingerie producer I.D. Sarrieri. This is a relatively new name to me. I.D. Sarrieri was launched in 1992, but has been run the last 8 years by 33 year old Lulia Dobrin. In terms of luxury lingerie, this certainly rivals the fashions of La Perla and Simone Perele. The list of celebrities who wear her designs are like a who's who of current actresses such as Halle Berry, Cameron Diaz, and Charlize Theron, among many others.

For those of us not currently pulling in an A-list actor's salary, the designs here may be a bit to steep for our price range. But they sure are nice to look at.

The detail on the 3800 line certainly blew me away. Pictured here is a push up bra and matching boyshort. The idea behind this set is a modern take on a vintage concept. What I see is gorgeous french lace, and plenty of it at that.

The bra is a padded push up with a very nicely done lace accent. The cups are covered with a floral lace design and there is a generous amount of lace detail across the tops of the cups. There is also a lovely bow accent in the middle. There are adjustable double shoulder straps. The bra is 50% nylon, 34% rayon, 10% elastic, and 6% rayon. It costs $155.

The boyshort is even more stunning to me. It is completely sheer tulle adorned with french lace designs. The lace detail continues across the back to provide the wearer with some visual coverage. It also has a lace trim waistband and a bow accent. It is made from 57% rayon, 24% nylon, and 19% cotton. It costs $150.

The 6700 line is also retro-inspired, and while not having the same amount of lace detail, it is gorgeous in the way that it is understated. It is all very sheer and very feminine. The black color lends itself to a more formal look. It also has enough design to enhance the sexiness of an already sexy sheer black piece.

This bra is a triangle, so it has significantly less padding. It is delicate and bold at the same time. It leaves very little to the imagination, as it is quite sheer. It is sheer nylon with a tulle trim and a floral design. It is transparent, yet not so much that it doesn't leave the observer looking for more. It is made from 58% polyester, 35% nylon, and 7% spandex. It costs $150.

While there is also a matching g-sting, I opted to highlight the retro brief. I think when you're dealing with a sheer piece, more coverage is actually sexier. The panty is completely sheer, save for the front patch which is sheer but has the matching floral design over it. Despite being a brief it still sits well below the natural waist. It also has a small bow detail in the front. It is made from 42% polyester, 36% nylon, 18% cotton, and 4% spandex. It costs $93.

I saved the sexiest and boldest for last. The 3200 line combines the lace detail of the 3800 and the sheer style of the 6700 to come out with some gorgeous pieces. This line is not for the self conscious types as the ivory color leaves the wearer with nowhere to hide. It is so stunning, however, that I'm not sure how someone could feel anything but gorgeous wearing these.

Again, the bra is a triangle. It is sheer tulle accented with chantilly lace, as well as Swarovski crystals. The crystals are actually sprinkled in throughout the bra. The adjustable bra straps are accented with a generous amount of lace. The bra is 100% nylon. As you might expect, this bra comes with a big price tag...$273 to be exact. But no one ever said wearing Swarovski crystals would be cheap.

There are a variety of options to match with this, but none quite as good as the culotte. The culotte is so transparent one must feel like they're wearing nothing at all. It sits low on the hips and has an almost boyshort-like fit to it. Once again, there is chantilly lace detail, but it's kept to a minimum as the intent seems to have been to keep this as transparent as possible. Once again, there is an inclusion of Swarovski crystals inside the lace detail. Does it get more gorgeous than this? The culotte costs $255.

Have a great weekend!


Thursday, October 29, 2009

In consideration of the past crazy days of my life, I thought I'd share with you lovers a song that always seems to make me that giggly kind of happy/joyous.

Its by Page France and called "Grass"

It's so appropriate for these windy days, too.
Just a short, lovely record.

Blue eyes when the wind was done
You were lying like a soldier
In the grass, in the grass,
Like the war was over
Blue eyes when you took a breath
It was heavy on my shoulder
Clap your hands, clap your hands
It looks like the worst is over
Blue eyes when the wind was here
You were blown just like a feather
In the trees, in the trees
You were caught inside forever
Blue eyes when you hold your breath
I can breath in deeper
Clap your hands, clap your hands
The grass doesn't get no greener
Blue eyes when the wind was done,
You were carried on my shoulder
Praise the land, praise the land
And all of its placeholders
(praise the land, praise the land, and all of its placeholders)


How to Make a Meat Hand for Halloween

The folks at Not Martha have provided you with a step-by-step recipe to create a memorable Halloween menu item - the Meat Hand. As the blogger there says, "Since August, I've had a post-it over my desk that simply said 'meat hand'." I'm sure co-workers were a bit concerned to see the phrase "meat hand" hovering over your desk.

From the onion fingernails to the wrist-bone, and melted cheese and ketchup, I have to say that a meat hand lying in a mashed potato bed would likely be an attention-getter for your holiday gatherings.

One of Three

This week, I'm all about the dollhouse. Dollhouse Bettie, that is. For those who might not know, Dollhouse Bettie is an outfit in San Francisco's famed Haight Ashbury area that specializes in pinup and vintage style lingerie. Being a New Englander, I've never actually set foot into their store (sadly, I knew nothing about them when I went to San Fran a few years back), but their website is a sight to behold. It is stocked full on any kind of lingerie you can imagine, much of it inspired by the styles of the early part of last century. I made three selections from their wide variety of throwback goodness. Now...which to choose?

Thanks, as always, for all of your outstanding comments last week. It was a close win for the Hot Sox Fern Lace Stay-Up Thigh Highs. I think it's a great choice and certainly looking forward to giving them a try.

On to this week:

Blush Femme Fatale Pinstripe Garter Pantie

Admittedly, it took me a while before I ever tried a garter panty. I always figured I'd prefer the versatility of keeping the two pieces separate. But I've been more than pleasantly surprised by the ones I've tried. The Femme Fatale Pinstripe Garter Pantie might be the sexiest I've ever seen of an inherently sexy undergarment. Unlike some garter panties that are meant to be worn strictly in the bedroom, this piece is built for day long wear. It is high waisted and made from a blend of nylon and elastane allowing for optimum fit and maximum comfort. Despite this, no sexiness was sacrificed, in my opinion. It has a sleek gray look with burgundy pinstripes. A center patch is sewn in with horizontal stripes and is aligned on either side by pretty ruffles.

It has an elastic waistband and cotton gusset. The garters are also detachable, but, this piece screams for a sexy pair of stockings, does it not? The garter pantie is available in small, medium, and large. It costs $29.25.

Julia Sleek Sapphire Blue Satin Garter Bustier

Quite honestly I was looking at posting the matching panty originally. It was the blue color and satin finish that caught my eye. But when the page with the panty linked me to this bustier, I was stunned. Is this not a beautiful piece of lingerie?

The Julia Sleek Sapphire Blue Satin Garter Bustier has padded cups with inserts that are edged with ruffles. The cups meet together in the middle with a bow. Boning descends down the garment on both the front and the back. It comes to a scoop bottom with a ruffled hem. There are four removable satin garter straps which have a bow on them. The satin straps are adjustable and the piece closes in the back with 14 hook and eye closures.

The bustier is made from polyester micro satin and spandex. It comes in a wide variety of sizes based upon bra size. It costs $56.25.

Mary Green Nouveau Retro White Silk Teddy

This is a really unique piece of lingerie. It is a combination cami and knicker that is made into a one piece. Once again, I have fallen victim to something shiny. In this case the radiance of this piece as well as the promise of silk has me wondering just how good this feels on.

The Mary Green Nouveau Retro White Silk Teddy is made of a stretch silk material that offers comfort in addition to great feel. In addition to the white silk, it also has a generous amount of gorgeous lace detail. The cups are almost completely covered by a wide band of pink lace. At the bottom of the garment, the pattern repeats around the two leg openings. It also has adjustable shoulder straps at the top. It also has a snap closure in the gusset.

Aside from the trim, the teddy is silk and lycra. It is available in small, medium, and large. In addition to the white, that is pictured here, it is also available in a blush and black color. It costs $68.75.

So this time around we have three very different pieces from one outstanding retailer. As you can probably see from the pictures, they are all extremely sexy. The question to you is: which one is best? It's all a matter of what type of lingerie you like best. I know I could never pick from among these three.

Book Review: Redeeming Features by Nicky Haslam: Joy of being souffléed alive

Seasoned Arcatistes will know that I am not given to incontinent praise. So when I say that Nicky Haslam's memoir Redeeming Features is the most brilliantly trivial book I have ever read (since the Andy Warhol Diaries) you may need to pause and take a deep breath. Yes, you have my permission not to work for the rest of the day. By all means have sex. At least buy a good champagne.

Redeeming Features is the book Proust might have written had he not literary talent - his curse I'm afraid - or the book Duncan Fallowell might have penned had he not a brain or Oscar Wilde might have dashed off had he not a sense of humour. This is not to say that Nicky lacks literary talent or brains. Or a sense of humour. It is that he has neither (nor the sense of humour) in sufficient quantity to get in the way. His naked magnetism to society and celebrity figures is pure, romantic, child-like: nothing takes priority over his natal desire to nurture intimacies that are worth it.

A reader of average intelligence, and with an above average interest in names (obscure upper class aristo satellites, especially) will find their own delight unchallenged by artistic soul delving, behavioural over-noticing or mere satire. Many a memoir is utterly ruined by the simple inability of the author to maintain the consistency of a soufflé in matters entirely inconsequential. Nicky avoids this. He rises to the occasion all puffed up like a pillow, his named crowns golden, and with a yielding middle bit: yes, he did have a romance with Tony Armstrong-Jones. Redeeming Features is that scrummy.

In keeping with the frothy nature of the book it would be unseemly then to try to paraphrase his tale: it matters only that he is here and the book is there. To say more would be to ruin the effect, to puncture the soufflé. Light things, such as a joke, cannot bear to be named or explained. To write a book which is just there is a high accomplishment: it is an act of witting or unwitting humility. I can't say better than that.

Like all good books, Redeeming Features hosts a mystery. On p283, Nicky writes of Margaret, Duchess of Argyll "meeting a supposed sex-change relative." Of this encounter he recalls once writing in the defunct magazine Ritz: "With a song in her heart, Marg beheld an adorable face. It may be a her to you and me, but it sure is a him to Her Grace." I can't imagine why the "supposed sex-change" is not named but if he means who I think he means he should know she's highly litigious. And she's no sex-change.

50 Celebrities Then And Now

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Another set of celebrity pictures from back then and now. Some of them were really hard for me to recognize. See for yourself.

Pamela Anderson

Alyssa Milano

Victoria Beckham

Little Rascal/Wal-Mart clerk

Tobey Maguire

Steve Urkel

Scarlett Johansson

Punky Brewster

Jeremy Piven/Michael Barth

Brad Pitt

Jerry O’Connell

Nicole Eggert

Mike Rowe

Mark Hamill

Marilyn Manson

Lindsay Lohan

Lil’ John

Leo DiCaprio

Stephanie from Full House

Karen from The Office

John Travolta

John Stewart

Michael Jackson

Ice Man

Hulk Hogan

Hayden Panettiere

Ricky Gervais

Edward Furlong

Fat Ginger from various 90’s era kid’s movies

Eric Bana

Elijah Wood

Dick Cheney

Elisha Cuthbert

Plays the ‘Creepy Dude’ in every movie he’s in

Creed from The Office

Nikki Cox

Stephen Colbert

Clint Eastwood

Charlie from Willy Wonka

Macaulay Culkin

Roided Carrots

Bret McKenzie

Christian Bale

Angelina Jolie

Anakin Skywalker (just landed a role as ‘clerk’ in the upcoming LA based Wal-Mart)

Amy Winehouse

Carlton from Fresh Prince

Barry Balco Bonds

Tara Reid