Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Someday My Pig will Come

Pork-quoi? Pork-quoi pas! Eric at Paris Daily Photo announced that Pigs will fly! And so they shall. Well, this little one shall, at least. Monsieur Tenin tempted his devoted fans with the cutest of cute piggy banks. She's so adorable that there is even wishful talk of an auction. Since the freight to Australia would cost as much as a small country, I'll dream of her instead, high over the streets of Paris and winging her way to me...

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Secret Diary of an Oscars' Host


Dear Diary


It's been a bloody long day, but what a day!

I woke up yesterday morning and was so excited, I could barely eat my Coco Pops. The Academy Awards were finally here. And you should see Deb. Man! She's hot. She had her hair cut especially and she's been helping me at the gym. I think spotting me for my bench presses has helped her just as much as me. And the Alex Perry dress she wore? Man! Did I tell you she's hot?! If I had a tail, I'd be wagging it a lot!

I've had some late nights but it's all good. People thought I was joking when I said that I made the props for my opening routine. Lucky Deb and I have a huge crafts stash for Oscar and Ava and a truckload of Clag. Hey, I just realised ... how cool is that? Oscar's called Oscar and I just hosted the Oscars! Ha. I wish I'd thought of that earlier.

And how great to have Sarah Jessica Parker near the front row so I could scare the Victoria's Secret pants off her when I said, "Hi, Sarah Jessica," just a minute into the number. After pulling her out of the audience for my 2004 Tony telecast and getting her to lap dance ... haha, the poor little darl' was probably shaking in those Manolo Beatniks she wears! Hm. Getting her to lap dance again would have been a really great move for the Wrestler tribute. Never mind. I had fun taking the Mickey-Rourke out of myself with my big Wolverine finish. I hope it wasn't too obscure. I wish I hadn't run out of time to sew silver spray painted paddle pop sticks into the end of my wrestler arm pads for the full effect.

I've also been spending hours and hours drilling my dance steps, mostly for the big Busby Berkeley flavoured number with a triple scoop of Baz on top. I had such a ball! In fact, I don't think I've had so much fun since The Boy from Oz days, though I kind of missed the tight gold duds. But being able to dance with a girl made up for it. I was a little breathless by the end of the number, but I did rescue a cat from a tree and save a little old lady from a burning building on the way to the theatre, and I think that knackered me a bit.

Well, it's time to read some bedtime stories to the kids.
H.J.

Note: Of course, this is all highly fictitious and bears no relationship whatsoever to any real person or persons, living or pretending to do so, and any resemblance is entirely coincidental. Really.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Man of the Cloth

Take a look at Tommy Hilfiger's wardrobe, shown in a feature in the February Australian edition of InStyle magazine. Top marks for directing his clothes to be so well behaved. Perhaps the splashes of red say 'we may be neat but we know how to play'?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Tall and the Short of It

Scratching your head? I hereby fit this into the 'gorgeous' category since it's clearly nothing to do with 'home'. It's a little something for blogpals Tall Gary and Alexa: being vertically challenged in both directions can be kind of fun.

Alexa, I hope you don't mind me dressing you in a leopard print trench with black cigar pants and ballet flats. I thought a Parisian vibe might be un peu jolie! In case you're wondering, that's Jacques's puppy you're taking on a walk. A little bonding time with you and she'll be a new dog. {I took the liberty of giving myself an Hermès Kelly bag, since this is a dream sequence ...}

Hope you like those dancing brogues, TG!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Colin with a Farrell: Still No Hope for Firthophiles

by SHELL SHERREE

Like many ladies surfing the web today, I had a brief coronary flutter when I saw a headline, "Colin in Latest Celebrity Breakup".

I had to make myself a consolatory cup of Earl Grey when I clicked {forgive me, I think I Double Clicked} and discovered Colin Firth was not the Colin in question.

It was the other Colin F: Colin Farrell. The naughtier one. The one with two twinkles in his eyes. He, likewise, has a charming accent and is mighty pretty, so there's hope and good cheer for some. But I suspect those damsels could be a generation or two younger than we Firthophiles. While the Party Farrellers are frantically texting and Twittering about the news and downing Cosmos, we Firthophiles would have discreetly High Fived ourselves in the privacy of the bathroom then put on our prettiest dressing gowns, picked up the phone and dialled our mothers ~ or daughters.

The split was announced by Colin Farrell's {now ex} girlfriend Emma Forrest to the American magazine InTouch. She felt that by her calculations, X {his lack of taking her to meet the family} multiplied by Y {his lack of thanking her in his Golden Globes acceptance speech for Best Actor Musical/Comedy, In Bruges} equalled Zero commitment. I hope she doesn't regret it. Surely she was an English major? Really, how good is her maths?

It could be a shame if it's true. The novelist/journalist was credited with being a stabilising influence in his life. {You don't see yachts getting up and thanking their stabilisers at the Annual Boat Show Awards, do you? Clearly being a stabiliser is a thankless role. Perhaps she was a little hasty to dismiss the relationship. And to be fair, Colin showed every drop of his poetic Irish blood with a lyrically humble speech that went on for a while. A giant hook may have been hovering side of stage causing him to have a premature culmination.}

Mind you, I doubt Colin Farrell would ever have a premature culmination or forget to thank his stabiliser. He would have a carefully prepared speech memorised ahead of time, checked for timing against his fob watch and a spare copy folded inside his tux pocket, together with a monogrammed silk 'kerchief and a bottle of smelling salts just in case.

He's such a nice young man!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Cherish



While waiting for my usually-early-but-this-time-contritely-tardy friend at a cafe on LaTrobe Terrace in Paddington, I whipped out my little tiny notebook and did this equally little tiny sketch of the Designs to Cherish boutique across the road. The cute kitties were part of the note page (by talented artist Teresa Kogut) and created an accidental but fetching foreground! { I was quite grateful for his lateness by the time he arrived.}

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Oscar Overcomes Intimacy Issues

by SHELL SHERREE

When Hugh Jackman starts talking about intimacy, I'm listening.

In an interview with the Associated Press about his upcoming hosting of the Academy Awards, he hinted that the Kodak Theatre would be less like a place to roll gold-foiled Jaffas down the aisles, and more like the nightclub of your dreams ... some place Intimate.

{Excuse me, that was the sound of my knees going weak ...}

It's one of the few clues to what lies ahead with the Oscars ceremony, shrouded in more mystery than Joaquin Phoenix's bizarre appearance on the Letterman show a few nights ago. Or the contents of his beard. {Personally, I wonder if he's been preparing for the sequel to his hit Johnny Cash biopic. I heard the working draft of the script is titled, "Snort the Line".}

Bill Condon and Laurence Mark are first time producers of the Academy Awards, perhaps credentialled for the gig by their 2006 movie, Dreamgirls. They are running with the 'curiosity' approach to luring viewer numbers. Perhaps they are onto something, in a world littered with reality TV shows and way too much cybersharing of breakfast and underwear choices.

Let's put the Miss back into mystique, I say.

Let us cast asunder the cheap and tarty name dropping of scheduled awards presenters {a thinly veiled attempt to increase ratings}. Rather may the upcoming ceremony be like a discreet lady allowing her skirt to rise slowly to reveal a hint of garter and stockings one glimpse at a time.

Condon and Mark are so intent on the secrecy, they have threatened that any presenters whose loose lips sink the Oscar Surprise Ship shall have their backstage passes torn up and even worse, their goodie bags confiscated. Clearly they mean business. Botox vouchers, mudwrap sessions and engraved iPods are not to be messed with lightly.

This much we know:

Baz Luhrmann is producing a number for Hugh.

With the Kodak Theatre's intimacy makeover, can we hope that Hugh will be lowered seductively from the ceiling on a trapeze to hover over the swooning crowd à la Moulin Rouge? Or will Baz create his own private homage to their snubbed 'Australia' by having Hugh tap dance to Singing in the Rain while stripped to the waist and tipping buckets of water continuously over himself? {Either is fine with me. Mighty fine. Damn, there go the knees again...}


Best Song Nominees will undergo speed dating.

Condon and Mark have blown the dust off the Academy's ceremony rule book and discovered that the Oscars must be wound up within three hours or on the last stroke, Tom Cruise's head will turn into a pumpkin. Dedicated to the cause, though perhaps shutting the gate after the horse has already bolted, the dynamic duo has decreed that all Best Song nominees will speed date in a medley. Each has 65 seconds to sing up their good points in hopes of going home with Oscar. Peter Gabriel has already put his foot down on moral grounds, refusing to be on stage while Wall-E's 'Down to Earth' goes through the compactor. Who can blame him?


There's an obligatory "we love you - now please use the trades' entrance" tribute to comedy.

Perhaps by way of apologising for comedians always being the bridesmaids at the Academy Awards, the tributary equivalent of a cheerful floral bouquet will be presented to comedy. {That's nice and all, but next time, throw NOMINATIONS instead.} Judd Apatow has been recruited to help. That's Judd with a J and Apatow with an "Eh?". No, I'm sure you've heard of him. He has a string of funnies under his belt and some rib tickling movies as well: The 40 Year Old Virgin, Talladega Nights, Step Brothers, Knocked Up ... An intriguing choice, but class and intimacy don't always go hand in hand.


Sadly, there are rumours that In Memoriam will rest in peace this year. That's a shame. It's a good test of whether wearing aluminium-based deodorants does in fact contribute to the early onset of Alzheimers. If I start wailing in shock as the montage rolls on, I'll know it's time to switch to something natural. I wonder what Joaquin uses ...

Friday, February 13, 2009

Save Calories: Wear Chocolate


Speaking of chocolate {aren't we always?}, this Ladies Double Heart Beat watch by Frederique Constant (Geneve) would make a most grand Valentine's Day statement. {Not that you need to spend money to say, "I love you." But if you were going to, then this could do nicely. Very nicely.} Chocolate mother of pearl dial, dial and bezel set with 56 full cut diamonds. Mmm.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Bridges of King Gee County

by SHELL SHERREE

I love watching the ads on TV. Sometimes, I even squeeze in a little TV show on the side, ad breaks permitting. I appreciate truly great ads. And there are some around. Last night, I noticed King Gee's latest one. You can check it out here as long as King Gee doesn’t move it elsewhere.

Little Jimmy or Jimmette {in the interests of political correctness}, aren’t you happy that daddy is helping to build a whopping big bridge in his King Gee shorts instead of being a boring-as-batpoo memo-writing office worker or a fluoride-treated yawn of a dentist?

Your daddy has such an interesting job compared to these poor staid stereotypes, forced to wear business shirts or white coats at work then lie awake at night, longingly counting King Gee shorts leaping over a girder. Or bending over in front of the mirror each morning in their pyjama shorts, desperately wishing for a revealing inch or two of butt-crack that their sensible wash and wear business trousers are never going to provide.

Lucky Daddy!

Lucky you!

Because every time Daddy drives his family over the whopping massive bridge, he will tell you about his exploits in his King Gees. One girder at a time. Won’t that be riveting? But don’t say, “Gee, Daddy, that’s riveting,” or before you know it, he’ll slap his thigh just below his King Gee tan mark and expound the virtues of the rivets he drove into his girders. One. Rivet. At. A. Time.

And for the next ten, twenty, thirty years, you will wonder why every time you drive over a bridge - any bridge - you will want to scream, break off your cup holder and poke out your eardrums with the pointy bit.

But don’t bother with therapists. None of them will be able to help you figure it out. Because as soon as you start talking about bridges, they will start wistfully dreaming about having a King Gee-wearing father who was rugged enough to build them... and they, too, will wonder Why?

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

How to Help Animals from Victoria's Bushfires


Every donation, large and small, brings some comfort and hope. You can help animals affected by Victoria's bushfires through RSPCA Victoria and Wildlife Victoria .

You can help two-legged ones through the Red Cross and Salvation Army.

These sites are being hit with heavy traffic, so please be patient and persist. International donations can be made on all sites. {Salvation Army provides a link to follow for international donations.}

Must keep our chins up and find something to smile about. Half-witty posts to resume shortly.

Monday, February 9, 2009

How to Help Animals from Victoria's Bushfires



Every donation, large and small, brings some comfort and hope. You can help animals affected by Victoria's bushfires through RSPCA Victoria and Wildlife Victoria .
You can help two-legged ones through the Red Cross and Salvation Army.
These sites are being hit with heavy traffic, so please be patient and persist. International donations can be made on all sites. {Salvation Army provides a link to follow for international donations.}

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Please Help Me, Miss Mild Manners, Writes Mr C Bale of Hollywood


Dear Miss Mild Manners

Ok, I give up. I wave the effing white flag. I thought I was improving my vocabulary by studying Gordon Ramsay's TV shows. I don't understand what happened. After all, he's a cool, popular guy and English. Like that Queen broad.

How was I to know the eff word wasn't a noun, verb, adjective, adverb and pronoun? Not that I understand all those things, I just remember hearing about them in grade school.

In my busy life, being the effing talented actor that I am, it seemed the ideal multifunctional word to save me time. When I wanted to give some friendly feedback to some misguided moron on set, I thought my effing eloquence would impress my fans and fellow lesbians alike.

Please help me. When the eff I can use the eff word without ending up being laughed at all over the internet and how come Gordon effing Ramsay doesn't get everything he says turned into weirdo effing YouTube remixes that make him look like some psycho fruitcake.

Effing yours {is that OK?}

MR C BALE



Dear Mr Bale

I believe the word you seek in your penultimate paragraph is 'thespians'. {I recommend a reputable dictionary and thesaurus as a starting point for the expansion of your vocabulary.}

No, it is not appropriate to sign off correspondence using the F word. A simple 'Yours sincerely' is always polite and warm.

Miss Mild Manners is not a personal fan of Mr Ramsay's colourful language but please bear in mind he is Scottish, not English as you conject, therefore one has to consider the use of the F word within the context of the language of the Scots. Since there is much speculation as to the origins of Scots and variants of the dialect, including germanic influences, there is a certain leniency that can be lent to use of the F word by those of Scottish heritage.

In short: he can do it and you can't.

Quite simply, Miss Mild Manners suggests there is only one occasion whereupon it might be acceptable and forgiveable for you to use the F word. If you ever accidentally chop off your own hand, go right ahead. If you chop off someone else's, do not under any circumstances offend them further by using the F word. Apologise immediately and dial 911 for them, since they are now incapable of doing it themselves. {A fruit basket and a typed note would also be a thoughtful touch. This is one of those rare occasions on which a handwritten note would be most insensitive.}

The English language is resplendent with inoffensive alternatives for the F word. For instance, Miss Mild Manners suggests substituting a gentle 'fluff' or 'fluffy' should the need arise again. For example, notice how comparatively inoffensive the beginning of your monologue sounds thus:

"I want you off the fluffy set, you fluff. No don’t just be sorry. Think for one fluffy second. What the fluff are you doing? Are you professional or not? ["Yes, um, I am..."] Do I fluffy walk around and rip down – No, shut the fluff up, Bruce – do I walk – No! No! Don’t shut me up. Am I going to walk around & rip your fluffy lights down in the middle of a scene? Then why the fluff are you walkin’ right through, "Oh da da, da da" like this in the background? What the fluff is it with you? What don’t you fluffy understand? You got any fluffy idea about Hey it’s fluffy distracting, having someone walking up behind Bryce in the middle of the fluffy scene? Give me a fluffy answer. What don’t you get about it?..."

I wish you the very best of British {not Scots} for your endeavours to safely expand your vocabulary in the future, Mr C Bale.

Yours sincerely

MISS MILD MANNERS

Note: Of course, this is all highly fictitious and bears no relationship whatsoever to any real person or persons, living or pretending to do so, and any resemblance is entirely coincidental. Did I disclaim that enough? Seriously ...

Monday, February 2, 2009

Balloons over Paris



Give me a bottle of Dior and a balloon flight over Paris and I'd be an even happier little lady! My illustration is based on the print ad for Miss Dior Chérie. For another mood-lifter and Paris-teaser, check out Sofia Coppola's delightful commercial, to the inspired accompaniment of Brigitte Bardot's 'Moi Je Joue'.
{And the fragrance? A blend of sophistication, impish femininity and innocence, evoked by green tangerine, wild strawberries, violet, popcorn - again with the food!}

No Sweat on Groundhog Day

by SHELL SHERREE

February 2nd is Groundhog Day in the USA. Spare a thought for Punxsutawney Phil. The entire schedule of winter coat sales rests heavily on his little furry shoulders and those of his brotherhood.

He usually lives quietly with his dear wife Phyllis in the library {that's right, the library} of his namesake town in Pennsylvania, waited on by carers known as the Inner Circle, easily distinguished by their top hats, tuxedos and unnatural fascination with mounds of earth.

But once a year with monotonous regularity, he is uprooted from his comfortable urban home and forced to live in temporary digs at Gobbler's Knob, a bucolic spot a few kilometres out of town. This enables him to go through the public charade of retreating back into his hole if he sees his shadow {thereby indicating six more weeks of winter weather} or sitting on his haunches to point and laugh at the dudes in formal dress {thereby indicating an early spring and a damn fine sense of humour}.

What people neglect to consider is that when Punxsutawney Phil emerges from his hole, still sleepy and bleary-eyed, his first thought is wondering where his wife got to. Whether he bolts back into his hole or not could be governed by how quickly he wakes up and realises that Phyllis is safely tucked in bed at the library, and not making Marmots with Octararo Orphie. {Octararo usually lives just up the road in Quarryville and it's heavily rumoured in the woodchuck community that he did a runner to escape the pressure of another year's seasonal expectations. He was last seen scampering into the woods after demonstrating that it is physically possible to flip the bird without having opposable thumbs.}

According to the Groundhog Club, whatever Punxsutawney Phil predicts, he will speak to the Club President in "Groundhogese", intelligible only to the Inner Circle; this prediction is then translated for the entire world.

{This can be logically explained. Each summer, Phil is fed a mysterious elixir of immortality called Groundhog Punch. He is presently 122 years of age and going strong. When Groundhog Punch is imbibed by humans, however, it has an hallucinigenic effect that lasts for at least 12 months. As only the Club members and Phil speak Groundhogese, no-one has been able to explain this to them in a language they can understand. This phenomenon could also explain the top hats and tuxes.}

Alongside the speculation about Octararo Orphie, there are whispers in woodchuck circles that Punxsutawney Phil is kept in the local library for his own protection. After all, last year he predicted six more weeks of winter in direct opposition to Jimmy the Groundhog, Dunkirk Dave and General Beauregarde Lee. Lucky he has Groundhog Punch and dapper bodyguards in his corner.

Sweet dreams, little Phil. Bloomingdales is counting on you.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Heightened Blood Pressure of the Happiest Kind

by SHELL SHERREE

Sad but true, long running TV show ER will soon turn off its heart monitor and shuffle slowly towards the light of TV Heaven.

Now in its 15th year, ER is currently rating higher than that award-showered poser 30 Rock. In spite of this, the cubicle curtains are being discreetly drawn. {I've only just got the hang of ignoring the distractions of arterial bleeds so I can keep up with the warp speed barking of medical terms. And I'm only two seasons away from my honorary doctorate, damn it. I'll never get to finish it by watching Grey's Anatomy.}

NBC seems to be embracing the 'quit while you're ahead' and 'leave them wanting more' philosophy. {And yet they foisted a whole season of Lipstick Jungle on us. Go figure.}

In keeping with the 'leave them wanting more' angle, it is strongly rumoured that George Clooney has been brought back for one last turn as Dr Doug Ross to ensure the final season goes off with a blood-pressure spiking bang, not a whimper. It isn't out of the realms of possibility. After all, his megastardom hasn't stopped him turning his debonair charm towards ads for those odd coffee pod machines. {I now have two and I still can't figure out what to do with them.}

Mind you, the unconfirmed rumours seem as nebulous as those surrounding his love life. Uncited sources are running amok in Starbucks and rooftop carparks all over Hollywood. Some go so far as to say his scenes have already been filmed under the helpful cover of Harry Potter's invisibility cloak. Or Susan Sarandon's cleavage.

Unless Deep Throat comes forward to confirm it, though, I'll take it all with a grain of salt and possible hypertension. Hypotension? {Thanks for nothing, NBC!}