Tag Archives: jeremy irons

Lame Adventure 297: Très chouette

I was walking down Franklin Street in Tribeca near my place of employ when I was distracted from my three favorite topics of mindless thinking – sex, food, and longing for the weekend, by an intriguing window display from an eclectic retailer I have easily blown past hundreds of times called Urban Archaeology.

Hey, look up!

This place is a New York institution that sells elegant bath accessories and high-end lighting to the 1%, but what I think is most cool about them is their collection of architectural salvage.  Years ago when Geraldo Rivera opened Al Capone’s vault on live TV and only found some cigarette butts and gum wrappers, it was probably because this place discreetly got there first.  If there is one retailer in the entire world where you could find the original wheel, this is the place that would have it.

What have we here?

We have this.

The cable TV network Showtime had ten designers in ten cities design specifically themed displays in exclusive store windows to celebrate the second season series premiere of The Borgias on Easter Sunday, April 8.  New York’s theme is Decadence and it’s won my vote for best in show.  This window’s designer, Todd Moore, did a spot-on job conveying extreme excess in a sensual blood-red and gleaming gold setting.

Lounging around.

No room for rubber duckies here.

The gold doubloon sprinkled on the marble floor was another nice detail.

Not foiled chocolate. I tried to eat one. Nearly broke a tooth.

Thoughtfully considering the Catholic elements of the series, that luxurious bedpost is actually a wrought iron gate once used at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.  An Urban Archaeology exclusive, it can be yours for a $195,000 blessing.

$195,000 gate doubling as bed post. Pocket change. I'll take two.

Of course, my friends had their nits to pick.  After awarding the display his seal of holy approval, Milton slammed his critic’s gavel on the series and pronounced it:

Milton:  Not that good.

It’s equally possible that Milton could have declared it:

Milton (take 2): Not that bad.

I suggest this because he’s very aware that I can no longer afford premium cable stations on my featherweight wages, so I’m inclined to give the series sight unseen the benefit of the doubt.  Coincidentally, I also kneel at the altar of the actor, Jeremy Irons.

Jeremy and me (look closely).

My former colleague, The Quiet Man, who is now a Massachusetts-based escape artist, has never tuned into the series but he also granted the window display an upturned thumb.  He suggested one improvement:

The Quiet Man: Replace the mannequin with a real woman.

As for me, I’m thinking that bishop’s mitres might be making a comeback now, so I better get mine out of the dry cleaner’s fast.

If you’d like to see the other windows and possibly follow the Lame Adventures lead and vote for Decadence click here.

Vote Decadence today!

Voters are also automatically entered into a sweepstakes to live like a Borgia for five nights (guess you’ll want to sleep all day) in Venice, Italy.

Lame Adventure 34: Blooming and Sneezing

Next weekend’s forecast in the tri-state area is looking dreary, lows in the 40s and highs in only the 50s.  It might even rain both Saturday and Sunday.  The past two weekends the weather has been lovely.  When the weather is warm and sunny, I like to go outside and enjoy it.  Even if I’m just running my usual weekend errands, foraging for food and skin searing cleaning supplies, it’s much nicer doing so under warm sunny skies than when it’s 27 degrees and icy snow is piled everywhere.  One of the downsides of spring is that the tree is blooming outside my window so I’ve been sneezing thunderously.  A few times I think I’ve come close to tearing some upper body cartilage I’ve been sneezing with such ferocity.  Just as I typed that sentence I sneezed.

Tree outside my window starting to bloom and making me sneeze.

At work, Elsbeth’s been dry coughing frequently, Ling’s been phenomenally congested, Elaine, Greg, and I sneeze often, and even the Quiet Man in the back of the room made a sound today that prompted the following exchange while we were sitting at our desks feigning consciousness:

Ling:  God bless you, Quiet Man.

QM:  Thanks Ling.

Me:  Did he sneeze back there?  It sounded to me like he dropped something.

Ling:  No, that was a sneeze.

Me:  Really?  It sounded to me like a falling glass or anvil.

When I sneeze, it’s definitive.  Windows rattle, animals howl and children cry.  But I digress, back to basking in warm weekend sun.  When I stalk the streets of New York, I usually carry a camera.  Two weekends ago, people were photographing the dogwood trees blooming all over the Upper West Side, and I thought, “Yawn.”  Here are my shots of springtime.

Dogwood trees on Broadway. Snore.

Why? When I want a beer, I want a real beer.

The Pink Flamingo of the Upper West Side.

Garden in a can!

Come to the UWS and adopt a vacuum cleaner.

It was gone within an hour.

Last weekend, my errands included trying to exchange a bottle of Kiehl’s Tea Tree Oil shampoo for my preferred variety, Protein Concentrate Herbal, but unfortunately, the scent I like still had not arrived and the Tea Tree Oil is okay.  It only smells slightly like embalming fluid.  Upon leaving the Kiehl’s store, I was walking up Columbus Avenue and then at the corner of 67th and Columbus I thought of my friend, Roz.

Twenty years ago, Roz and I were walking on this same street when we saw Woody Allen and Mia Farrow, pushing two strollers with their kids, Satchel and Dylan.  They were standing at the corner waiting for the walk signal.  Roz starts whacking me repeatedly on the arm with the back of her hand murmuring urgently through gritted teeth, “Do you see!  Do you see!  Do you see!”

Roz is also twice my height and bears a striking resemblance to French actress, Fanny Ardant.

Fanny Ardant channeling Roz.

I have always looked more like a dung beetle, albeit with glasses.

A relation of mine with 20/20 vision.

Of course, I was completely aware of their presence, but Rule 17 in The Cool New Yorker Handbook dictates: under no circumstances will you betray a glimmer of recognition when in the presence of celebrity, and this includes while in the company of spastic close friends.  Back on Columbus Avenue in 1990, Roz is so frustrated with my apparent indifference to this A-list sighting, she is almost pummeling me, indirectly creating a scene.

Woody Allen notices us.  He giggles.  We walk past him.

Roz (exploding):  What the hell is wrong with you?  Do you know who we just walked past?  Are you blind?  I don’t believe you!

Me (uncharacteristically calm):  Thanks to you, we just had the honor of amusing Woody Allen.  How many people can say that?

Now, twenty years later as I cross that corner, I recall that Roz’s birthday is approaching and I have to get her a card.  And, this year, try harder to remember to mail it.  As I continue to walk up Columbus Avenue, I notice a middle age woman in cuffed skinny jeans, a shabby looking double-breasted brown corduroy coat and wraparound tortoise frame sunglasses.  She is trying hard to look inconspicuous and that’s when it dawns on me that this is actress Joan Allen, or the winner of the Joan Allen look-alike contest.  I half want to channel my inner paparazzo and photograph her, but I remember Rule 17, keep walking and respect her privacy.  This was probably for the best since I then sneezed vociferously prompting a car alarm to activate.

Joan Allen and Jeremy Irons on Broadway in Impressionism in 2009. Good cast, mediocre play.