Category Archives: celebrity

Name, Name, Go Away

The Year of the Flood

The Year of the Flood

I started reading Margaret Atwood’s The Year of The Flood this week on my daily commute. So far, like all of her books, it’s incredibly engaging and thought provoking. But…well….I have to say it: I HATE that she auctioned the name of a character off to Rebecca Eckler

Now, the character isn’t anything like the real Rebecca Eckler, but every time she appears I am briefly snapped out of the storyline and then have to get back into it. To be fair, I would have felt the same way if she’d auctioned the name off to Ben Mulroney or Shinan Govani or George Stroumboulopoulous–anyone with a well-known name and a personality.

I know it was for charity, and that Atwood’s done it before, but I feel like the fourth wall has been pushed down–a bad move for a book with such an other-worldly feel.

Has anyone else read this yet? What do you think about giving fictional characters real world names?




Filed under Books, celebrity

A Few Ways to Nourish Your Inner Aspect Courtesy of Vanity Fair

Loss of a great writer: Dominick Dunne

I adore Vanity Fair  and have subscribed to it for several years, so I was saddened yesterday to hear about the death of Dominick Dunne. He was a fixture at Vanity Fair, and inevitably gave a certain insider’s perspective to the lifestyles–and especially the tragedies–of the rich and famous. He was always a great read. I recommend checking out Graydon Carter’s tribute–it’s an eloquent snapshot of a fascinating life.

I’d also recommend something a bit lighter from the current issue: Gwyneth Paltrow’s “Diary” as “told to” Craig Brown. Brown perfectly captures the spirit of and skewers Gwyneth’s self-centred, unrealistically perfect online newsletter GOOP , which suggests ways to “nourish the inner aspect” (Full disclosure: I am a subscriber). Can you identify which is the real Gwyneth and which is the VF version?


“One of my dearest friends in the world is an Italian gentleman by the name of Giancarlo Giametti. He is the longtime friend and partner of fashion legend Valentino Garavani, another dear friend. Giancarlo lives in incredible style – I’ve never seen the likes of it. GG, as he is affectionately known, has an amazingly talented chef who makes rustic Italian food to die for.” – Gwyneth


“Do you sometimes get the feeling you just have too much going on? 

“At one end of the room the kids are crying out for you to teach them how to make that truly great detox teriyaki salad with miso-nettle dressing. At the other end of the room there’s a new movie script sent to you by the cuddly and awesome director Sam Mendes. And then the phone rings and it’s your supercool friend Madonna Ciccone begging you to step into that favorite old cut-price Balenciaga knee-length dress with your buckle belt and outrageous tartan boots and come with her to the opening of this great new restaurant up on East 54th Street.

“Meanwhile, you are desperately trying to get your butt in great shape while nourishing your inner aspect by learning how to fold napkins in a way that will make them more ecologically sustainable.” – Gwyneth

Brilliant stuff.


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