The cultural happenings of the last week or so have been frequent and fabulous. On Wednesday night I saw ‘An Education,’ the new film by Lone Scherfig with a screenplay by the one and only Nick Hornby. The film tells the story of Jenny, gorgeously played by Carrie Mulligan, and her rather unusual coming of age in 1960’s suburban London. Mulligan may be a new face to some, but I recognized her from her role in Masterpiece Theater’s exceptional rendition of ‘Bleakhouse.’ Mulligan is a talented and beautiful young actress, and I think we will be seeing a great deal more from her after the attention garnered from this film. Plus, she is dating Shia LaBeouf, so I doubt she will able to remain an unknown much longer. Speaking of Dickens, on Wednesday I also began reading ‘Little Dorrit,’ which I have wanted to read forever! I also finished ‘Cold Mountain,’ (for the third time) a favorite of mine.
Thursday night I attended a fashion event to promote Ruffian’s new line for Anthropologie. The clothes were classy, and people really got into the glam of the evening. Champagne with starfruit was served, as well as many a delicious chocolate truffle! Ruffian also designed a room at Anthropologie’s Rockefeller center location. The space is themed to look like the dressing room of a 1950’s starlet. With telegraphs pinned to the wall, dresses strewn across antique closets, and a fully installed vintage sink the exhibit is something to see. All should head to Anthro’s 50 Rockefeller location ASAP. I also read a few of the short stories of Tille Olsen, a really great writer. My favorite is called ‘I Stand Here Ironing,’ which recounts a mother’s inner monologue concerning the daughter.
Friday night I went out to the restaurant DBGB Kitchen and Bar, at 299 Bowery, the newest space for chef Daniel Boulud. The place is a real sausage and beer restaurant with 14 kinds of sausage to offer. I tried two of the 14 and also split burgers with a pal, trying both ‘the frenchie’(6 oz beef patty with grilled pork belly, arugula, tomato-onion compote & morbier cheese on a peppered brioche bun with cornichon, mustard & fries) and ‘the piggie’ (6 oz beef patty topped with daisy may’s bbq pulled pork, jalapeño mayonnaise & boston lettuce on a cheddar-cornbread bun with mustard-vinegar slaw & frie). I thought the burgers merited full descriptions, as they were indeed truly fabulous. After eating till the bursting point I headed over to Webster Hall to see ‘ The Airborne Toxic Event.’ The LA band played an amazing rock show compete with a Smiths cover, what more could you ask? ‘The Airborne Toxic Event,’formed in 2006 by front man Mikel Jollett, has enjoyed great success since the release of their self-titled album in 2008. With a hard rock sound and much lyrical angst, they are very fun to watch and a pleasure to hear.
Saturday morning I headed right to the Morningside Park farmers market. I bought cider doughnuts and fresh veggies. I also made sure to visit my favorite pickle stand. Horman’s Best Pickles, run by Nick Horman sells crunchy pickles with flavors from Honey Mustard to Sweet Cajon. Horman explains on his website, “When I graduated college with a degree in philosophy, I did what any devoted philosopher would do- I became a pickleman.” It’s a good thing he did because the farmer’s market would not be the same without him! Saturday night was reserved for the circus, plain and simple. The Big Apple Circus is in town and it is a fabulous evening out to be sure. This years Big Apple sees the return of front man...or front clown, Bello Nock. Nock, who was named “America’s Best Clown” by Time magazine, returns to The Big Apple Circus after an absence of nine seasons. He is a sight to behold with his vertically gifted hairdo, death defying stunts, and hysterical clowning. He is not to be missed. However, the real showstopper at this year’s circus, for me, would have to be the juggler Picaso, Jr. Hailing from Valencia Spain, Picaso Jr. is the son of famed circus juggler El Gran Picaso. He is one of the best jugglers I have ever seen and his skills have won him three Guinness World Records. What this man can do with a plain plastic plate and a ping-pong ball… you simply have to see it for yourself. The Big Apple Circus is playing at Lincoln Center, 62nd btw Columbus and Amsterdam, until January 18th. Don't miss it!