Monday, December 13, 2010

And there was much walking.

That weird b.o. & colored pencil shavings smell is trapped in the Pompadou, just like in the Getty. It was right in the entrance in the Getty, but in the Pompadou it's at the entrance to Gallery 1. Blegh.

After about four hours of walking, the iconic red-flecked exoskeleton of the Centre Georges Pompidou finally peeked around the corner! I could spend all week here! And I just might.

I was ecstatic to discover that one of the two current exhibitions is a combo Piet Mondrian/De Stijl show! I bought my ticket and headed straight to the Gallery, obliviously skipping over the largest modern art museum in Europe, right through that weird b.o./pencil smell and into the exhibition.

Holy crap! I didn't even get through the first room, of like 20, and all these ideas and revelations came busting into my head! I had to walk straight through the rest of the show and back down to the bookstore to buy a pen and pad.

I started writing them down here, but really it's like several pages, and there's a sketch of a frame, and I can't cherry-pick them. Maybe some other time.

Anyway, I stayed there for a couple hours then took the subway to an area foretold to have great bistros. It was about 6pm when I learned that most restaurants in Paris don't open for business until 7, so I had to wander utterly aimlessly around the 6th district for an hour.

I need to sleep now, but here's the rest... Sticking to my "platte du jour" strategy, I had a foie gras appetizer and blanquette de veau for the main course. I think the wine was a Côtes du Rhône.

I hope I can walk tomorrow.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Paris: Premier Jour

Aujourd'hui, nous avons dimanche.

Most places were closed, mais pas de la Tour Eiffel. J'ai dormi dans l'avion, alors que j'avais faim. So, j'ai d'abord pris le déjeuner, puis je suis allé à la Tour Eiffel.

My delightful concierge, Frederique, recommended little Italian place around the corner for lunch, and as instructed by my friend Holdly, I did order the Pl
atte du Jour, and it was Boeuf Bourguignon served with bread and a side of green beens. Everything was delicious, including the green beans, which were sautéed in garlic butter. The Boeuf Bourguignon was actually a bit too salty, and reminded me of a salty version my own Beef Daube, although it was missing some of the more floral notes I use, namely ginger and lavendar. Still, it was very good, and filling.

Just around the corner was the Eiffel Tower, which on first approach, I realized that, having stupidly left my ATM card in my printer at home when I was making photo copies of all my valuables, I was without cash. And of course, when I got to the front of the line, the lady said she would not sell me one ticket on credit. Even though they're 5 Euros a piece., so back to the hotel I went, and actually that's when I ate, then I grabbed what little cash I had and had it converted by the rapeman behind the exchange counter. He transformed $25 into 14 euros, but that was enough.

The tower was beautiful and cold, and there were people from all over constantly taking pictures of it. The line to use the tram was ridiculous so I went to the really short line where you can just take the steps. I climbed up to the second level, as far as I could go. You need to buy another ticket to go to the very top.

Then walked across the Seine and bought a chocolate and banana crepe and a small coffee, then walked about the Trocadero eyeing people's wears (and wares), and finally stopping to listen to a small choir singing hymns and Chirstmas songs in French, German, and English.

After that I went back home and passed out about 7pm. Woke up at 12am, thinking it wou
ld be much later. Took a sleeping pill, and I'm still up. Tomorrow I need to get to a bank. I found an American Express office at 11 Rue Scribe, which is in Arrondissement 1. After that I'm taking a recommendation on Lunch, and then going to Le Marais, a neighborhood that has the Pompadou Centre, Notre Dame, and lots of exciting boutiques.

Oh yeah, and I almost forgot to tell you about bit of... not sure what to think of this, but you can actually order a hotdog at the Eiffel Tower's concessions stand. Yes, a hotdog. The picture of it on the menu shows it being served on a French Baguette, but still. It's a fucking hotdog! I'm so relieved to know that American Cuisine has found its way into the French capital with such sophistication et de charme!

I'll leave you with a picture taken from La Tour Eiffel facing south, along the Seine, and, if you know where to look, my little Hotel Eiffel Seine, just out of view around the corner from La Maison de la culture du Japon à Paris, which is that glass building just over the left shoulder of that curved building in the middle of the photo.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Black Swan

I really can't wait for this movie to come out, but here's the rub... Chances are it's not yet showing in your town, and it's definitely not in my town, BUT it was released in 8 American cities Dec. 3rd, and it WILL be released in two more cities on Dec. 10th... AND WE'RE ONE OF THEM! Oh yeah, the rub? Well, I'm leaving town on Saturday, but I think I might still be able to squeeze in a movie Friday night IF I can get tickets. It's only showing in one theater that I know of so far, and it's the rich people's theater. I mean it's in the rich mall w/the Saks Fifth Avenue and the Sur La Table, which, what a stupid name for a cookware store, and let me tell you they have a $300 omelette pan, but whatever, etc. (yawn).

I heard an interview with Darren Aronofsky on the radio last week and he said that while studying the story behind swan lake, it occurred to him that this is a story about a... wereswan! There! Excuse me? There swan, there castle. Why are you talking like that? I don't know I thought you wanted to. Suit yourself!

Can you tell I'm a little jacked up about this fil'm? I mean Requiem for a Dream is one of my favorite pictures of all time (yes, I've probably watched it a dozen times at least), and here comes this incredibly beautiful, dark, dramatic new work from Aronofsky that just happens to star the woman I'm going to someday marry, and then to top it all off they release these incredible promo posters.

Feast your famished eyes!


I know, I want them to be bigger images too, so they like completely envelope you, but this blog sucks, so deal w/it.