Archive | Spirit Matters

Redgrave as Metaphor

What happens when a materialist film critic has an anxiety dream:

Shoes—shoes lost, shoes gained, shoes lost. I’ve lost my own and don’t have another pair with which to safely exit this terrible claustrophobic party thrown by a celeb hostess in a gentrified section of Brooklyn. Others (the hostess’s assistant!) keep stealing my original pair, bringing me five more pairs that are impeccably beautiful and whisking them away as soon I get ensnared in another vapid starfucker conversation. We’re talking perfectly soft and shined loafers and boots by Prada, Miu Miu, Marc Jacobs, Louboutin—God, labels seem so pre-Covid. I find myself longing for such refined empty luxury.

Vanessa Redgrave—even longer and blonder and more displeased than she seems on screen—turns out to be the hostess. Grand-dame sociopathy masquerading as cool calm collection. She sweeps and droops around, getting drunker and drunker on perfectly rendered martinis–lemon not olive–as her guests wax and wane. At one point there are people crammed into every corner of her too-white house. Someone does the math and declares it 2012 guests, which is a 1:1 ratio for every square inch of the living room. White furniture white rugs white walls white chandeliers. Her house is hoarder-stuffed but with the most beautiful things: Chagall paintings and Brancusi sculptures and 70s Dior so it’s hard to register the same disdain as if it were plastic angels from Home Shopping Club. More a mixture of envy and disgust and judgment that I meta-judge within myself. I feel as if I’m a poor kid in Newton again. I’m stuck because, oy, no shoes so end up sleeping on a very white couch, my red lipstick leaving a crime scene on a cushion. Continue Reading →

Flaneuzy Days of Yore

I woke thinking about what I miss most about pre-Covid life. Every week it’s different but today I miss my old summer practice of slipping into movie theaters on Monday mornings to see the newest releases in delicious cool quiet surrounded only by other (cheap) cinephiles. I’d pay for one show, then sneak into another and then another and another before finally emerging into the still-sweltering early evening. Falling into step with all the other New Yorkers making their way to dinner and drinks and drama and doldrums–first by foot across town and then by ferry across the river and then again by foot up the Williamsburg hill. Floating in a blur of the films I’d just seen and the film of all the strangers with whom I was moving, shoulder to shoulder, hip to hip, all of us beautiful in our sweaty sullen noisy throng, framed by the rising steam and NYC skyline. O my god I miss the ordinary-extraordinary physical intimacy of anonymous city life.

On the Blessing of Paying Our Bills

Yes, you read that right. Because in this super-cruddy Covid economy, many of us are having trouble hitting our monthly nut. And I find that, even when we can, the ability to pay our bills is not something we regard as a blessing. Rather, bill-paying looms as a bore—a chore, even.

The truth? While end-stage capitalism often makes unreasonable demands of our resources, humans always have exchanged goods and services for some sort of capital. My point? That it’s wonderfully freeing to be able to pay our own way. That the right to a bank account and wages wasn’t granted to many until late in the last century. And that counting our blessings begets more blessings, because it sends the message to the universe that they are being received so there’s an effective channel through which to send more.

Bottom line? Next time you’re paying your dentist or Con-Ed or even Venmo-ing your pal for last night’s socially distanced dinner, remember to say (whisper, if you feel silly): Thank you, universe, for my ability to pay this bill. Even in this super-cruddy Covid economy, you just may be opening a door for more.

To schedule a reading for yourself or a loved one, book here. Art: dollar bill remixed by Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol.

"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love."
― Leo Tolstoy