August 23, 2020

The Hungry Boy

Daniel Day-Lewis and Vicky Krieps in Phantom Thread
superbly written & directed by Paul Thomas Anderson

With all the unpleasantness going on in the world, uplifting Artistic Expression becomes even more important.  I know 'Blogging' is so 2014 with far more superficial social media platforms now in vogue requiring far less effort and even more self aggrandizement yet we're astonished at the traffic the Den still generates even with our recent inactivity thus we feel duty bound to throw a bone to those that still seek GSL's guidance on the Ways of the World.

Today we introduce you to the greatest first meeting in the History of Cinema. It's The Hungry Boy scene from Phantom Thread the Den wrote about here. You may also recall, being Hopeless Romantics, we do not encourage May-December couplings however sometimes they actually do work and when they do it's because Cupid, feeling merciful, arranges for two peculiar souls to rescue each other from a life of silent misery and seeing that process unfold despite some adversity is beautiful to behold.

Just a word of caution on Phantom Thread. It's not a popcorn movie. You need to be in a 'curl up by the fire with a good book' mood to really appreciate it's full effect. My guess is having The Love of Your Life or a dear lifelong friend to share it with would make it even more special. I would compare PT to Julian Barne's excellent novella The Sense of An Ending which, when I read the first time, was preoccupied, so never really connected. A couple months later, I gave it another go and loved it and even more so the 3rd time.

You'd be right to assume GSL has sugar-plum visions of ordering Welsh Rabbit...and some sausages.

September 28, 2019

Women We Love: Amber Butchart

A Stitch in Time hostess, the beguiling Amber Butchart.  GSL knows Green the way Valentino knows Red and given many a vivacious redhead a proper intro. Amber Butchart is obviously familiar with GSL's work.
pic from Metro

GSL has been crushing on this BBC Fashion Historian Amber Butchart.  Yesterday afternoon, I was enjoying a couple bottles of Pinot Noir with dear friend Terry Drama who was showing me his recent Fall Wardrobe acquisitions so the talk veered to crisp tailoring and the cut and thrust of Terry's new Ralph Lauren bluesy check jacket is extra crispy. TD then suggested we watch a fave BBC doco he knew I hadn't yet seen.  We are both avowed Anglophiles with Terry virtually memorizing the entire Black Adder series occasionally sprinkling in references which always amuse as they go over head.  About 10 minutes into Episode 1 of A Stitch in Time, I was smitten with Amber Butchart and fascinated with the subject matter.

Over Pinot Noir, GSL & Terry Drama discussed how we're gonna lay siege to the Chicago Cultural landscape . TD is so named because everyone upon first meeting say he reminds them of Truman Capote. While there is a physical resemblance, it is his effect that rings so 'Tru'.  Over Manhattans at our local, Drama effortlessly glides from belting out a little Diana Ross (his Love Hangover exceeds Ms Ross espesh shimmy windup at power ballad to disco funk transition) to that aria from Les Miz with his thunderous bass baritone dazzling 3 blocks away.

Ordinarily, GSL doesn't go for OTT Style unless it's done well and it seldom is.  Ms Butchart does everything well.  We find her fascinating to look at and listen to.  Her series is a spellbinding celebration of Art History, Fashion, Dressmaking, and textiles.

CD, this show is right in your wheelhouse as Amber Butchart is in mine.

Have a look for yourself.

August 21, 2019


On the right is Denmark's Prime Minister: Mette "Dumb-Dumb" Frederiksen

Imagine you are a 41 year old freshly christened Prime Minister of a small NATO ally, who pays about 60% of the outlays they've agreed to whose first appearance on the world stage is to mock NATO's 800 lb gorilla who has been wondering aloud what purpose and necessity NATO has for America's National Interests especially when having to do most of the heavy lifting for a bunch of deadbeats.  I'm sure her phone has been blowing up with various renditions of STFU!!! in heavy Eastern European dialects.
GSL is frequently encouraged by loyal Den readers (across 6 continents and counting) to give his take on world events and one especially tantalizing psychodrama unfolded yesterday. One or two of you out there may not yet know what all the fuss is about so in a nutshell here it is. Four or five days ago, word leaked out that Trump has been kicking around the idea of acquiring semi-autonomous Greenland from Denmark.  This is nothing new. President Harry Truman looked into it at the end of World War II and Senator Tom Cotton (Republican from Arkansas) even mentioned it to the Danish Ambassador a few months ago in a meeting.  The appeal from the American side is Greenland's strategic importance to counter Russia's aggressive ambitions in Arctic waters.  A major American presence in Greenland would help the US protect Denmark,  Iceland, Norway, and Sweden.  In addition to a more robust US/NATO security blanket,  Denmark could reap a windfall while unloading a vastly underutilized asset freeing up $740 million per year in carrying costs.  Of course, the US would look to exploit those abundant untapped mineral reserves in Greenland.

Danish PM Mette Frederiksen
Theatre of the 'Absurd'
Would have loved to have spent the last 48 hours with the Glamazon PM after the International Press was screaming headlines that she found Trump's Greenland ambitions "absurd".  I'm sure she found the first few hours delightful with all the 'Progressive' Global Elites clucking "you go girl" encouragements, a call from Anna Wintour's people inquiring re glam photo-shoot for next issue of Vogue.  Then came those STFU outrages from Eastern-Euro leaders shitting bricks over Trump pulling out of NATO...and then Trump cancels his 2 day visit along with State Dinner hosted by Queen Margrethe.

Now we know what you're thinking: "Come on GSL. you Crafty Old Pro, step in and help this poor girl fix the mess she put herself in." Of course GSL, The Flower of Anglo-Saxon Chivalry, isn't just going to stand back and allow this silly girl to be humiliated on the world stage...that's Justin Trudeau's racket.

PM Fredericksen:  I hope you understand that within hours of a US pullout of NATO, Vladdy would be photographed running wind sprints across Greenland's frozen tundra with his shirt off.

OK, Miss Prime: here's what we're gonna do; Have your staff arrange for a call with POTUS in the next couple of days and then tell him: Mr President, please let me explain. I was caught off guard, said something off the cuff, was taken out of context, and while selling Greenland at first blush probably isn't workable, there are likely some joint agreements we can work towards that benefit both of us. Mr President, I realize we haven't fulfilled our financial commitments with NATO but we want to get there and if I can have you here with me, I can better make my case to Parliament which will also help you since you well know we would make large purchases from American Defense Contractors..."

Miss Prime you would instantly become POTUS's little darling which would be enormously helpful for Denmark in general and you in particular and no more "Dumb-Dumb"and DJT will be on his best behavior and have Queen Margrethe in a swoon.  Now regarding this Vogue shoot for Anna, I have a few ideas....

**UPDATE:  It appears Miss Prime followed GSL's marching orders to the letter.