http://parismorningsnewyorknights.blogspot.com/2015/12/an-ode-to-san-francisco.html Wild Young Minds: May 2013

Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Lion Queen

Recently, one of the most successful models of the moment Cara Delevingne got herself two(!) tattoos. Especially the second was much-discussed. It is a lion on her forefinger. I'm not really into the place where she had it designed, but I think the image is marvellous. Lions belong to my favourite species of animals, because they're so powerful, yet at the same time fluffy. The Lion King used to be my favourite Disney film and Simba was my hero.

It's said Cara got her tattoo because Rihanna (who has millions of tattoos herself) advised her so. I'm a huge fan of tattoos - since I got myself one, I can't wait for the next one - but I certainly hope Cara isn't going to follow Rihanna on this. Why not? Well, Cara is a model and even though models can definitely have tattoos (Freja Beha Erichsen!), the bigger they get, the harder it is to photoshop them or think them out of the picture.
I do have to say that it came as a surprise to me that this was only Cara's first tattoo. After all, she's twenty and if I can believe the press, she's done several things God has forbidden already. Anyway, I think the lion is fabulous (all lions are fabulous!) and I'm definitely curious at the next move in Cara's life. Will it be another small tattoo or maybe even an image of her idol on her back? Who knows, Cara is full of surprises!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Chocolate, men, coffee - some things are better rich

An ode to coffee - sadly enough it's my best friend in this period filled with exams and papers. The other day I found out I ran out of coffee filters and that was when I realized an addiction had slipped into my life. Ah well, why should that be a problem, right?
''Coffee is real good when you drink it it gives you time to think. It's a lot more than just a drink; it's something happening. Not as in hip, but like an event, a place to be, but not like a location, but like somewhere within yourself. It gives you time, but not actual hours or minutes, but a chance to be, like be yourself, and have a second cup.'' - Gertrude Stein, the Godmother of The Lost Generation

Friday, May 24, 2013

Roadtrip nr. 2: even more freedom on our way through Eastern Europe

Why more freedom? Because we're not going to book a single hostel this time. Just keep rolling under the starts. Let's see which city we like, where we will meet fabulous people and which cities we want to leave straight away.
The route for this year is as follows: Amsterdam - Berlin - Prague - Auschwitz - Krakau - Bratislava - Budapest - Sarajevo - Zagreb - Croatian Coast - Ljubljana - Salzburg and then back home. Might sound scheduled, but everything can change. Let curiosity be our guide and I'm sure this roadtrip will be just as good as last year's - or even better.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

'The Great Gatsby': a perfect, irresistible imagination

Always tricky, adapting a great, great book for the screen. F. Scott Fitzgerald is one of the writers of whom I hope to read a lot more in the future, since the first book I read made a huge impression on me: 'The Great Gatsby'. When I heard they were planning a film with Leonardo Dicraprio and Carey Mulligan in the leading roles, my heart stopped beating. Little did I know Tobey Maguire would play Fitzgerald himself, an unsuitable choice. The 3D effects weren't great either, but I do have to say I enjoyed the festive spectacle the film has become. As a few guys who were sitting me behind we were saying: 'It was just like a fairy-tale'. It was, it definitely was. A fairy-tale, a dream or an imaginary world. It was perfect and irresistible to look at, just like Mr. Gatsby himself.

The story of 'The Great Gatsby' is told by Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire), who is a young aspiring writer who has just moved to New York in order to earn money and learn the bond business. It is 1922, the beginning of the Roaring Twenties and things are hectic in New York, in a very positive way. Nick has rented a house in West Egg, next to Gatsby's castle. His cousin Daisy Buchanan (Carey Mulligan), married to the rich Tom, lives in East Egg, totally opposite from Nick's house. When he joins them for dinner, he is introduced to the luxury life of the rich in New York. Daisy is bored, spents her time in her fabulous house with her fabulous friends drinking fabulous drinks and wearing fabulous clothes. Tom is constantly cheating on her, but he has one particular mistress, Myrtle Wilson, who lives in a chubby home in the wrong part of the city: the Valley of Ashes.

Nick Carraway soon hears from his neighbour: The Great Gatsby (Leonardo Dicaprio). There's a giant mystery surrounding Gatsby. Nobody knows how the young man has earned all of his money and what his story is. One night, Nick is invited to one of Gatsby's extravagant parties. He's the only one with an invitation, since the entire city just goes there uninvited. Nick meets Gatsby via Jordan Baker, who is a famous sporter and one of Daisy's best friends. Gatsby and Nick meet several times and Nick realizes Gatsby wants something from him. It turns out he wants Nick to arrange a tea date between him and Daisy.

Gatsby and Daisy had an extremely passionate love five years ago, until Gatsby had to join the army. Daisy waited for him, but eventually stopped waiting and married Tom. After the War, Gatsby longed for nothing but Daisy and he bought a giant house across the bay from Daisy's house. He always saw a green light at the other side of the water. Gatsby is extremely nervous before the date, but things go well and he shows Daisy his mansion and all of his wealth.

Daisy and Gatsby relive their past again and want nothing but being with each other. Meanwhile, nobody may know they are together, so Gatsby stops throwing parties and fires all his employees. But his perfect life isn't perfect enough, because he needs Daisy to tell Tom she never loved him, in order to live together. This is something Daisy finds extremely difficult. During lunch, which Gatsby, Nick, Jordan, Daisy and Tom are attending, Tom finds out Gatsby and his wife are having an affair and he goes crazy. Gatsby pushes Daisy to tell Tom she never loved him, but she can't. This is when things are really getting out of hand...


First of all, I have nothing negative to say about the story. I think Fitzgerald's novel is one of extreme quality. The loneliness and mystery of Gatsby, the indifference of Tom and Daisy and with them the rich people and the roaring but at the same time pessimistic era of the twenties. These themes are all worked out extremely fine.

The producers of the film did a good job showing this on screen. It was all a bit more extravagant and exaggerated on screen, which would've been okay, if not for the 3D-effects. These made some scenes more like a carnival in stead of a party. Maybe this was also because of the modern hits in it, like Jay-Z and Kanye West's 'No church in the wild' and a few songs of Lana del Rey and Beyoncé.

As for the actors, I think most of them were casted very well. Leonardo Dicaprio played a convincing Gatsby, apart from the unsuccesful accent (was it British? was it wealthy? was it both? I don't know!) and the sometimes childish moments, but that could also have been due to the fact he's still in my memory as Jack in Titanic. I have to say Leonardo Dicaprio, or maybe Gatsby, for the fact he's so damaged and passionate, is my dream man. I would have no difficulty saying no to my husband in that case ;) Carey Mulligan was charming as Daisy. Naive but impervious. Sadly, Tobey Maguire was really annoying. He was too foolish, too dumb and too enthusiastic to play a neutral part. 

All in all, 'The Great Gatsby' is a gigantic feast where you wish you would've been part of (except from all the drama of course!) and to look at it, is definitely perfect and irresistible. Some parts could've been a bit more subtile and less exaggerated and the 3D could be totally left out, if you ask me. But the story is great and if you are no big reader, you should definitely see this film because the story of 'The Great Gatsby' needs to be spread.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Charade: Audrey Hepburn in a vintage thriller

''I already know an awful lot of people and until one of them dies I couldn't possibly meet anyone else''
This is what Reggie Lampert (Audrey Hepburn) says in one of the first scenes in Charade (1963). Reggie is on a skiing holiday with a friend, whom she tells she's going to divorce her husband Charles. The charming Peter Joshua (Cary Grant) walks in and receives this rejection. Back in Paris (where most of Audrey Hepburn's films take place), Reggie finds out her husband has been murdered.

A thrilling sequence of situations follows. At the funeral, Reggie sees three rather suspicious men, who turn out to be three survivors of a WW II operation. Together with Reggie's husband and Carson Dyle they had to give a great amount of money to the French Resistance, but they never did. Charles took all the money and now the three men want to have it back. Too bad for them the US governments wants the money as well. Everyone thinks Reggie has the money, but she has no idea where it is.

She's being treatened several times and hides herself in a hotel room. She receives help from, who soon turns out to be named different from what he says. He says he's Carson Dyle's brother Alex and thinks the others murdered his brother. Reggie falls for Alex and his protectiveness but feels cheatened when she finds out Carson Dyle didn't have any brother. Alex gets a new name again (Adam) and actually is a thief!

Reggie wants to find out where the money is herself too, so she starts a hunt as well. At an outdoor market, where Charles had his last appointment, she finds out the money is hidden in stamps. Unfortunately, the stamps have been given to her friend's son, who has traded them with a stamp trader. Luckily, he realizes some mistake was made so he gives them back to Reggie.

When she's back in the hotel, Reggie finds out another of the three men is murdered. He wrote 'Dyle' before he died. She is extremely frightened and runs outside. Adam sees her and runs after her. A long chase through Paris and the subway follows. That's pretty much all I'm going to give away, since the rest you have to see for yourselves. I can already say many more disclosures will follow.

'Charade' is different from the other films starring Audrey Hepburn. Though I love them all, this one is more shocking and thrilling. It doesn't come close to our thrillers nowadays (persecutions are always quite corny in old movies), but it has a good story line. Audrey Hepburn is perfect as always, very funny, defined and charming. Cary Grant is definitely the gentlemen, but I didn't feel a real connection between them. May sound cheesy, but Audrey is definitely to sparkling for Cary, who is more stiff and cold.

'Charade' is said to be the best Hitchcock film Hitchcock never made and I definitely agree with that. No doubt. Audrey Hepburn outshines Grace Kelly, if you ask me, but unfortunately there's no sparkling connection like Grace Kelly and Cary Grant had in 'To catch a thief'. Ah, you can't have it all.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

18 going on 19

Another personal post! Hope I'm not bothering you with this, but I just had to write this post. I'm turning 19 tomorrow, which is a pretty big thing of course ;) I have to say I don't really like this age, I'd rather stay 18 for another year. Though it has positive aspects to become older as well, 18 is such a care-free age. I'm not sure what I mean either, but it's just a feeling I have!

Anyway, it has become a sort of tradition to post a photo review of the previous year. When I turned 18, I showed you the best moments of the year I was 17. That's exactly what I'm going to do now as well. I sincerely hope you haven't seen all photos yet, cause I acknowledge that might be the case, but I hope you like seeing them anyway! I do at least, when I look back at this post a few years from now.

Maybe I also dislike turning 19, because 18 has been such a marvelous age. It was the year I graduated cum laude, the year I made a roadtrip through Europe (which was the best month of my life), the year I moved to Amsterdam, the year I met lots of new people, the year I continued going to festivals and concerts, the year my photo was in Italian Vogue, the year I got my tattoo, the year I  fell in and out of love several times (I do have feeling, yes), the year I became more independent and the year I became more and more free every day. Well, enough with the summing-up, let's see 18 in photos.
Old friends becoming neighbours
Jazz festivals
Handsome guys festivals
From city to city with best friend
Meeting nice guys with best friend
Moving to Amsterdam with lots of records (and without dog unfortunately)
In Italian Vogue with beautiful dress
Going out with new friends
Modelling with roommates
More modelling with old friend
Tattoo!
Unplanned trip to Barcelona with new friend

More modelling with new friends
Lots of laughing with roommates/friends
 Planned trip to Köln with roommate, last one for the modelling and laughing 

Here's to 19, to even more new people and to even more free moments. Love! 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

I'm in Chinese magazine '1626' with Natalie de Koning's collection!

Though I can't understand a word that's stated in the article (might be something horrible, who knows?), I'm absolutely thrilled by the fact four of my photos are published in a Chinese magazine!
It was a complete surprise until two days ago, when Natalie de Koning published four of these pages on her Facebook. I don't think the magazine is available in the Netherlands, but I'm going to do the best I can and it will probably be on the internet anyway.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Betty Wright: the lady's got soul

Sunday the 28th of April was the night. The night we (Ramai and I) were going to see Betty Wright. I had won tickets via Radio 6, my favourite radio station. Betty Wright had been at North Sea Jazz the year we were there as well, but due to the crowded hall we couldn't see her. It's said she was one of the best artists that year, so we were very eager to see her!

The lady is 59 already and a proud grandmother of 11 grandkids. But damn, she could perform. Dressed in a glitter dress and wearing high heels, she was still able to sing, dance and laugh at the same time. Maybe it was the fact that the band looked like a big family, which it kind of proved to be later on. Two of her daughters were singing in the background choir, which I found very lovely!
Betty Wright sang a varied list of songs. Many of them were from her latest album with the Roots, like 'In the Middle of the Game' and 'You and Me, Leroy'. She also did her classics, like 'Clean Up Woman' and an extended version of 'Tonight is the Night', which I really, really liked! And a new one was on the list as well. Unfortunately, the show didn't last very long and Betty didn't even return on stage after we kept shouting 'We want more, we want more' (You know how that usually goes!) Thank god, her attitude was amazing. She was funny, had a lot of self-mockery and rocked the stage. 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Happy Kingsday!

If you're Dutch you'll probably know most of it already, but if you're not from this country, let me explain it to you. Yesterday, April 30, our queen Beatrix resigned. She made place for her first-born son Willem-Alexander, who is now King of the Netherlands. This was a huge thing in the Netherlands, so the festivities were grand, especially in Amsterdam. I think half of the Dutch people were at the Dam yesterday, to see the King, his wife Maxima (dressed in a fabulous blue dress by Jan Taminiau) and their three daughters: Amalia, Alexia and Ariane. They also made a trip in a boat over the 'IJ' (a lake in Amsterdam). I have to admit I didn't see a thing of the entire event. Not only because I'm against the monarchy (I think it's nonsense that we pay taxes for their luxurous lifestyle and that's not the only reason), but also because I had other things to do!

My roommate Charlotte and I were quite tough for ourselves. We woke up at 6 o'clock, just to find a spot near Museumplein where we could sell our old clothes. We'd decided to do this, because we were eager to earn money and because we didn't want to spend a lot of money on a festival ticket. We were quite lucky to find a good spot, opposite a coffee and cake stand.

We actually made quite some money. Though I had far less stuff with me than Charlotte, I made the most money ;) 45 euros to be exact. I sold a few Sex & the City books and 3 records, but mostly old clothes and shoes I hadn't worn the last 2 years. The atmosphere was very lovely. The best part of the day was when a little girl came to our stand and was in love with my furry body warmer. What was a short garment for me, was a loose-fit garment for her. It was extremely cute, though I'm not even into children!

After a while we had enough of it. Our bodies ached, it was very cold and we didn't sell a lot anymore. So we went back home and brought the left-overs back. Then my celebration of the last Queen's day continued with a small party at the Brouwersgracht with friends of another roommate. We had a lovely time and stayed there until the Oranjebal started at Chicago Social Club, one of my favourite bars in Amsterdam. We had a fabulous time there as well and although our celebration of the King wasn't completely genuine, we made sure we had a wonderful day. That's most important, right? ;)