Saturday, November 18, 2006

I drove in Paris


Found in Translation

So, I am recently returned from my first trip to Paris. As I mentioned in earlier posts, I had a great deal of apprehension regarding this excursion, much of which owing to the fact that I do not speak French. Let me give you some back round.
When I was in high school, my family hosted French Canadian students for the summer. They were a very friendly and energetic group of teenagers and we spent the summer experiencing all the lovely tourist traps LA has to offer*. As you can imagine, most of the summer was actually spent in LA traffic. During all of the long car rides, a favorite game of the Canadians was to ask me to speak to them in French. They would say a word and I would attempt the pronunciation and then they would laugh. They loved this game.
Fast forward 11 years and you can see that this seemingly harmless game has left a scar. I was afraid that French people would laugh at me trying to order a ham and cheese sandwich. But, seeing as it has been 11 years, I rounded up my fears stuck them in a pocket and went to Paris.

It was awesome. Not just Paris, which would be hard to screw up**, but conversing with the French. Admittedly, at first there were some tricky points, but once I slowed down and started to listen more I was able to not only say 5 or 6 useful French words, but my English actually improved as well. I had to remove slang and colloquial phrases from my diction if I wanted the French with their classroom English to understand me. At times it felt like an exercise in communication I would be given at some corporate job training retreat. I loved it.

And, whenever we wanted to speak privately, my travel companion and I would just talk quickly to each other. Not only could they not understand our speed English, but I don't think anyone we met ever understood what she said regardless of speed. Somewhere there are French Canadians laughing.

*They were always most excited to go to Venice beach and Santa Monica because that is where they film Baywatch. . .and you thought it was just the Germans with the Hasslehof fetish.
**Ask my travel companion who was pick pocketed for 300 euro and still managed to enjoy her holiday.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Why I love Sofia Coppola more and hate Kirsten Dunst less

If you saw Marie Antoinette and did not like it you have two options; go and try again because there is something you missed or stop reading now. If you have not seen Marie Antoinette, stop reading and go to the movies now.*

I had anticipated this film for quite some time and my excitement was not deterred by poor reviews. This is a terrible way to see a film. High expectations nearly always lead to let down. Thankfully not the case with Marie. She held up to all expectations and I was quite pleased.

This being said, I am not here to talk about the movie**. From time to time I am asked, as a hair dresser, who in the industry I look up to. This has always been a difficult question for me to answer. I respect and admire numerous hair dressers that have come before me as well as many of my contemporaries, but there has never been that one out there that really gave me something to shoot for. Someone that I could look to for inspiration in artistry and career path, that I could still relate to on some level. Mind you, in an industry that I would say (without official statistics) is 80% women, probably 95% of those at the top that I could look up to are men. The hair for Marie Antoinette was styled by Odile Gilbert, a French session stylist whose work I have always respected. Until recently had never considered how amazing she is. She is one lady among many men that can do the caliber of work that she can do. She has perforated the boys club of editorial and session stylist and then went on to style brilliant film that is having a huge impact on fashion and the world of pop culture. For this, I feel I finally have an opinion on the subject.***

And, she is French.

*Blanket apology for my current bossiness.
**All evidence to the contrary.
***Just having an opinion is typically more important than what that opinion is.

By the way, I do love Sofia Coppola, and hate Kirsten Dunst, but that wasn't really the focus.

I'm sure you figured that out.

I'll go now.

Comming soon to a blogger near you

It has come to my attention that my little baby blog has been dramatically under attended to. My sincerest apologies regarding my attention deficit. I am currently composing several riveting posts for your enjoyment and education*. Blogs to follow may include one or all of the following: Why I love Sofia Coppala more and hate Kirsten Dunst less; Found in translation; My evening at the grownups table; Monday afternoon on the island of the Grande Jatte or Echo Park; "27 is still MID-twenties"; and "Perv" does not translate into French.

By the way, yes I am 27 and that is okay.**

*Everything should be educational.
**Stuart Smalley anyone?