I’ve…uh…been here for years. Much like when I first started blogging many years and domain names ago, I’m feeling the itch to graffiti the internet with my opinions and shopping habits.
So what’s new now? There’s a new cat. She’s such a bitch. Calliope is still around and even sweeter and spoiled than before. I got a new car, which you don’t have to be excited about but I sure am. I’m a little blonder, which is cool. Also a little rounder, which is less cool. Let’s work on that, yes?
Most people in my life know by now that my cat Chloe died about a month ago. I debated on whether I needed to say anything about it here, but considering how often she popped up in pictures throughout the entire life of this blog, it makes sense to say goodbye to her on A Stylized Hysteria. About a month ago, she was outside after dark and was hit by a car. She was found by a very sympathetic good Samaritan and returned to me. The next morning she was buried in my parents backyard, a place where she spent hours exploring and chasing birds and bugs. I remember the moment I left the house that day. I paused and looked at the open window and told myself “she always comes in when it’s dark; let her enjoy the afternoon in the sun.” I regret that decision every day.
If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you know how much I adore animals (especially cats) and what a big part of my life they are. I can’t imagine a life without these loving, crazy, demanding, furry family members.
A few of my favorite things about Chloe cat:
When I brought her home as a six month old kitten, she immediately ran under my bed and stayed there for three days and nights. I was starting to feel like a failure until the fourth day. I came home from work and found her bravely hiding under my clothes hamper. I knew then everything would be okay.
Chloe was my first cat and I didn’t know that hissing meant “back off.” So she’d hiss at me and instead of leaving her alone I’d pick her up and shower her with kisses. After that, her normal greeting to people she was warming up to was a vicious hiss.
As a kitten, she adored running around on my bed when I was trying to make it up. There were so many times I’d find a Chloe-shaped lump under the sheets if I turned my back for a minute.
She was deeply shy and afraid of humans when I brought her home. When she felt comfortable enough to sleep on my bed with me, I was happy. When our first winter together rolled around and she spent evenings curled up behind my knees on the couch, I was thrilled. When, after three years together, she fell asleep on my chest, I felt so loved and proud to be chosen by her. It was wonderful.
Once we moved into my parents house, Chloe discovered the joys of suburban living; mainly, the basement. She would arrive in my bedroom at night with spiderwebs and dust covering her whiskers from her expeditions to the darkest corners of the house.
Once Chloe decided she liked me, I never got a good nights sleep again. She was convinced prime snuggling time was between 1-3am. Almost every night I was awoken by a cold, wet nose on my hand or a plaintive meow and kneading of my kidneys. I still find myself waking up in the middle of the night – she trained me well.
She turned up her nose at sushi, steak, poached fish, cheese, bread, and sardines. Cat treats held no appeal. Her one indulgence? My mothers various palm trees. They all suffered at Chloe’s hand (mouth).
She loved baiting her sister, Calliope, into wrestling matches. She never won a single fight and often ran away in defeat. But she always came back for more. Maybe with a little more time she could’ve developed her right hook and become a lightweight champion.
I still sometimes expect her to greet me at the door when I get home from work, but I’m working on it. My friends and family have helped by accepting my overly emotional reaction and letting me talk about her often. A friend painted the most beautiful picture of her, based on one of my favorite photos of Chloe. It truly captures her constant look of disapproval and concern for her silly, overly affectionate guardian who often preferred a night in with her cats than hitting the town.
I’m grateful for what she taught me about patience and responsibility. And I think she knew that she was deeply loved during her life. I’ll miss you, Chloe.
When macabre meets over the top opulence…this is what you get.
Gristly human remains. Ornate jewels. Not staged by a brilliant design house (anyone else getting a little Alexander McQueen from this?) but rather ripped out of Europe’s history. These remains date back to the 15th and 16th centuries and are “catacomb saints.” Apparently saints were way more blinged out than I thought. These photos are courtesy of photographer Paul Koudounaris, who is the only person who has been allowed to photograph these beauties. Heavenly Bodies: Cult Treasures and Spectacular Saints from the Catacombs comes out next month, and I can’t wait ’til it’s on my coffee table. I originally read about this on Gawker and this news article has some further insight on the history of these very luxe corpses.
A few nights ago, I arrived home to find my parents snuggled up in bed together. Aww cute. Then I went to my bedroom and found my two cats, also snuggled together. It hit me – I’m the fifth wheel in MY OWN HOME. So if you’re like me and spending Valentine’s Day alone when seemingly every other person mammal on earth is coupled up, here’s a guide on how to handle it.
Buy shit. Specifically shit that is not pink, red, romantic, or flirty whatsoever.
How about some jewelry as black as your withered heart?
1. Funktional; way cooler than any button-down you could borrow from a man-friend.
2. Topshop; this would be great to throw on when you roll out of bed at 2pm on a Sunday because you didn’t have to get up early and cook a fancy brunch for your boyfriend’s parents. Accessorize with a beer and plateful of bacon.
3. Dolce Vita; feminine in a “grandmother’s handkerchief or tablecloth” kind of way.
4. Topshop; yes, it’s a basic black sweatshirt. But in really cool neoprene fabric. It’ll leave men befuddled, trust me.
A classic red or pale pink nail is a perfect Valentine’s Day manicure. Say fuck it and try one of these instead.
For dessert, eat these. These are the best caramels I’ve ever eaten in my life. Seriously. If you want to emulate me, say you’ll only eat 2 or 3 and then eat half the bag in one sitting and wait for the caramel sugar coma to sink in.
Now…for some entertainment. Don’t worry there are no star-crossed lovers or Nicholas Sparks crap here.
Who has time to worry about things like relationships and love when you’re got a full-time heroin addiction to nurture? Trainspotting is one of my favorite movies ever – the sharp humor, bleak story line, wicked soundtrack, and unexpected happy (?) ending can’t be beat. Also, full frontal Ewan McGregor. Just because I’m anti Valentine’s Day doesn’t mean I’m frigid, people.
If you like your movies with a bit more bite…how about Teeth? Not for the squeamish, and definitely not man-friendly, this movie might actually leave you frigid for a little while.
There you go. I am confident that if you follow my careful instructions you will have a kickass Valentine’s Day despite the fact that you’re alone. All alone. Forever and ever and ever.
Oh, and if anyone brings up Valentine’s Day around you, follow my lead:
Am I the only one still watching Gossip Girl? Yes, the plot twists are absurd. Serena’s short skirts are even more so. But when Gossip Girl does fashion well, it’s really good. In honor of the series ending and the last episode tonight (!) here are some of my favorite looks from New York’s elite.
Goodbye to my favorite Upper East Siders. XOXO…A Stylized Hysteria