The one area of the Christmas tree where I’m pickiest is the star turn. My experience has shown that most stars that retailers offer for you to place atop your tree are wholly inadequate. Most of them are way too gaudy for words. And you want the top of the tree to look the best, you know? It’s the focal point, in a way, and having something hanging on the top that reeks of a Vegas lounge totally detracts from the look of the rest of the tree.
So this year, Corb and I haven’t been settling. Our quest has taken us everywhere, including “Christmas World” with the kids. The place only opens during the holidays, and is completely covered in Christmas decorations, from wreaths to bulbs to those tacky plastic lawn decorations that some people haul our, year after year, to celebrate the season. It's as though Burl Ives threw up all over the joint.
It also has some pretty nice Christmas displays, as you can see. And coffee and fudge. I was particularly partial to the coffee. It's the Twin Peaks in me.
Well, after deliberating for half an hour, we thought we had purchased an acceptable star, but when we brought it home and plugged it in, we realized that the star, when lit, glowed with soft pastel rainbow colors.
“Oh my god,” I said to Corb. “We have a gay pride Christmas tree!”
No we don’t. Corb quickly took the star off and replaced the color bulbs with white ones. But the lights short-circuited, and so now we’re back to square one.
Saturday night we saw Pride and Prejudice . I thought there was too much pride, and not enough prejudice.
No no no, I liked it, really I did. But the lead actress, Keira Knightly, really does have a toothy grin, doesn’t she? The best part of the movie is the way the camera rushes all around, as if on wings.
Here's a tip from "Nocompromises": certain books are meant for reading in bed, and others are meant for reading in the bathroom. The New Yorker is good for reading as your walking through the parking lot to work.
But back to the bathroom. I'm very particular about my bathroom fare. For the past months, I've been rereading Ethan Mordden's The Hollywood Studio . But after my birthday, I switched to Tab Hunter: Confidential . It's perfect for the bathroom, although there are some lines that aren't even worthy for bathroom fare. Take this one, for example:
"In ninth grade, Mother enrolled us in Mount Vernon Junior High...it was confirmation that, even as a kid, I had the look that made girls swoon. I'd sprouted to five foot eleven and had tousled, sub-bleached hair, my mother's strong features, and plenty of muscles from a knockabout childhood. Girls went goofy looking at me. It made me miserable."
Yeah, that must have been rough. Can I describe what I looked like in junior high?
The boys move around the court like marionettes on a string while the coaches bark out orders from the sidelines.
Parents watch their children run from one end of the court to the other, and while I may not be alone in bringing a camera, I’m certainly the only one there with a pen and notebook. And I think to myself, Why do I do it? Why do I sit here and write little notes to myself? Is what I’m doing even close to being worthwhile, or is it just a way for me to build a wall from other people? ?”
I spot Josie over on the other side of the court, and move over to sit with her. That stops my writing, forces me to engage.
Tiger has a little flair when he runs. He sort of skips like a gazelle mid-run. He likes to pass the ball to another player as fast as he can, which the coach complements him about later on.
Tiger is impressed. “Last year I was the team’s best shooter, this year I’m the team’s best passer!”