|Photo Credit: HvH Interiors|
|Photo Credit: Cleo Cat in Renee Marchol’s Los Angeles Apartment|
It’s the 4th of July and I have a pan of marbled fudge that I made on impulse that my husband and I can’t finish. We can’t freeze it for future use and we can’t give it away to friends. Why did I make it? To combat the alien feeling that my apartment is no longer a home.
|Photo Credit: Renee Marchol Moving Boxes|
What has happened? My apartment is full of moving boxes. I perfumed the one bedroom apartment with melting chocolate, condensed milk, natural peanut butter and powdered sugar just so it can feel like my place one last time.
We are moving in six days. We are moving away from Los Angeles. It was our home for two years and I loved it. I loved Point Dume in Malibu, the Getty Villa, the Hollywood Bowl, and my coworkers while in Southern California.
|Photo Credit: Residential Garden in Northern California|
I’ve verified with a recent four-day visit to our future neighborhood in Northern California that the transition will be tough. There are few young married couples in our life stage where we will live.
The culture is very different. My new neighborhood is known for gardening clubs!
|Photo Credit: Renee Marchol at Mission Santa Barbara Cacti Garden|
I’m accustomed seeing cacti that I don’t have to tend and lizards that dart on beach hiking trails.
I know I’ll adjust. If gardening is important to women in my new neighborhood, I’ll find out why. I’m sure that with enough antihistamine, I’ll be able to enjoy the flora too. Hey! The good side of gardening? I can grow my own greens for my vegan salads in a plot rather than on an anemic urban garden patio.
In addition, I expect to hunt down Norcal successful business women, active SmartyGirls, and DIY home decorators just as I did in Los Angeles.
Though there seem to be fewer opportunities for writers even in nearby cities such as San Francisco and Oakland I’m not intimidated. I’ll also set a goal to befriend one career couple per month because the community is mostly single family detached homes with one stay-at-home spouse.
|Photo Credit: Getty Villa Lily Pad Pond in Malibu by Renee Marchol|
It’s true that I’ve been spoiled by a better job market in Los Angeles and a vibrant community of unbeatable girlfriends who are fellow ecommerce writers.
|Photo Credit: Renee Marchol Hearty Vegan Salad|
My husband and I are hoping to find a bar in the new neighborhood that we like as much as The Glendon Bar and Restaurant in Westwood. The $5 martinis will be hard to beat. We liked the bar for its quirkiness. Our favorite nights were when the bar played Johnny Depp’s Dead Men on both the restaurant’s t.v.s and alternated the movie with internet meme cat videos. I like the tall, exaggerated, leather tufted seat backs and mix of contemporary details and chandelier lighting. I suggested that The Glendon would serve as our emergency meeting place in case of a zombie uprising like in Shaun of the Dead.
Once I get settled in, I’ll share “Top 10 Tips for Moving and Packing”. I’m borrowing ideas from friends and internet tutorials. After I’m done with my live experiment, I can share what works.
|Photo Credit: Amazon.com The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald|
What movie am I anticipating? Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby”. Disclosure: I am a fan of Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet for all the reasons most critics hated it. I liked the pacing, the cutaways, and the modern music. I’m hoping his The Great Gatsby will express the same rabid passion and turmoil.
I believe Baz Luhrmann direction is well-suited dangerous emotion of the characters and suspenseful plot.
Why? I believe Baz Luhrmann’s over-the-topic style will be perfect because audiences in 2012 may not fully understand just how wild the bootlegging days of the 1920s were. Also I’m looking forward to some of the women’s fashion of the 1920s returning. I’m hoping the public attention to the movie will bring back some of the women’s kohl makeup and vamp hairstyles of the era, even if for a season.
When did I read the novel? I read the novel during my senior year in college in my American Literature class. It made me proud to be an American to hear about Jazz culture and the rebellious American spirit. It’s fitting that I write about it on July 4th. Keep in mind that it’s also a sobering narrative about the American dream.
The idea can allow social climbing and reinvention of oneself. However, it’s trappings can also hollow out one’s insides. Or is that women trouble? You can decide for yourself whether Gatsby is undone by a dream or Daisy.
What do I think about the casting? I can understand why Leonardo DiCaprio was cast for a period piece because of his success in the Aviator but I wish a younger actor was selected. I want to be surprised along with the characters that Gatsby is not just a light-hearted, carefree fellow. I associate DiCaprio with weightiness in a character so I feel that secrets have been leaked too early.
I imagine that the audience would enjoy the mystery of discovering who is Gatsby concurrently with the other characters in the story. With Leonardo DiCaprio he carries such gravity that as a movie goer, I come in with a bias that I already know that Gatsby must be something much more than he seems. I am very pleased with the casting of Carey Mulligan from Drive with Ryan Gosling. I think it’s possible that Daisy will be played well and I might even feel for the character.
Since Fitzgerald’s novel is a classic and meaningful to American Literature, I’ve always felt guilty as an English major for not having more sympathy for the female characters of this novel. Perhaps, the actresses will bring out nuances that I did not consider. I hope so. In that same literature class, I wanted to develop more sympathy of the protagonist of The Awakening but I felt like I couldn’t. However, this is exactly why I appreciate American Literature, they are drawn as real people with severe flaws.
They are not superheroes. It is the story of the “everyman” even if an individual were to come into a fortune. The story makes me wonder about the following:
- Would you be happy if maintaining your lifestyle took so many lies?
- When you are pursuing someone, do you really care about them as a person or do you see them merely as a symbol or possession?
- How well can you really know someone who is a town celebrity?
I’m looking forward to meditating upon this classic story of social climbing, new money, East Egg and West Egg.