Look, he's wearing a little harness- hot and considerate.
You can see the rest here blah blah you're not listening because hands down pants and I'm not judging hurrgghnphg.
It's a nice little bit about animist Kurds in Anatolia, their connection to the land and the expression of their deeply personal disorganised religion. See it before the Turkish government dams the living shit out of the valley.
Because I love you guys and I care about your wellbeing.
Look, he's wearing a little harness- hot and considerate.
You can see the rest here blah blah you're not listening because hands down pants and I'm not judging hurrgghnphg.
Drawing on experience, Shaw had been careful to pack a set of aging jeans and sweatshirt to replace those casual garments issued to them at the time of their departure, the latters' institutional flavour so devoid of anonymity that few dared to wear them. His companions, two men his own age, had taken no such measures and crossed the road before him stiffly in their new gym-grey and naval blue ensembles, boots still carrying their factory dust over the muddy tarmac toward a roadside inn. Its ponderous stone frontage was set back beneath a slatted balcony painted a fading pale milk chocolate. Slits of light fell through the yellow bottle glass windows and their thin render of dirt, to lie upon the sodden road. The trio paused to allow the passage of a pony ambling before a trailer of corrugated iron hammered over wood, its mismatched tractor tyres shrieking as they swayed upon their axles. Drifts of misting rain so fine that it settled on their clothing without soaking through blurred the darkness of the hills, their cobalt ramparts penning the listless village like some huge stockade.
The tavern door was manned by an ancient rustic seated beneath the sunken black felt of his hat; he squinted at the Americans as they ducked the lintel and stood before the counter in the shifting glow of christmas lights entwined around its timber fixtures, alternating red and green. Their leader scanned a gloom composed of candlelight and the malted stink of upset beer and smuggled cigarette smoke. Wessner was the tallest of them by half a foot but carried enough muscle to offset any impression of idle length, his face a neat, squared, close-shaven summary of his Pennsylvania Dutch extraction, his pale stare guarded by a forehead promising resolve. Belying these cues, he turned his back to the imbibing locals and reached down into his pocket to consult his GPS device for the third time since their arrival. Their communications officer leant over the small appliance himself, unduly invested in his vacillation. Amis was slender, watchful and dark-haired, possessed of a limpid gaze and restless limbs; Shaw murmured, too late to prevent the staring habitués emptying their vessels down their throats and departing in a flat-footed mass, the exodus leaving a single clique seated at the far end of the narrow room.
Its members sat behind imported beer bottles, nursing half-closed and blackened eyes and other undisguised contusions, their battered faces sharing the colours guttering in the grate of the tiled stove beside them. The shadowed atmosphere agreed so closely with the dark woodland pattern of their partial fatigues that their limbs merged with the furniture. Turning again, Wessner addressed Shaw beneath his breath, looking back toward the bar.
“They’re not our source.”
“We can't look like this.” Shaw muttered, glancing back at the remaining patrons while Amis sucked a corner of his mouth between his teeth. One of the trio beside the stove addressed them loudly from their crowded table.
“That’s okay, you know... your source, he talk to us, and he’s cool. Very, very cool.” he called to them through a smirk, lifting one booted foot and setting it on his knee. Their predacious smiles lit the silver in their eyes and spread into a slow, smug chuckle that they shared, exhaled with cigarette smoke. One of them kicked out a bench from beneath the table; before Wessner could object, Shaw moved to accept the invitation, standing before the stove. Their self-styled host’s star tattoos moved slowly on either side of his throat as he spoke. “You know, I was thinking about this so much... what gets black op guys all the way to here? Maybe it’s big and not so friendly and maybe it likes English girls... because, I think I know where you can find this.” He folded his hands behind his head and leant back against them.
Taking a look around them, Wessner issued a reply without returning his eyes to the alujha, and Shaw withdrew, retracing his steps toward the bar. The thin plank door in the shadowed wall beside it cast a line of light across the floor, and he put out a boot and pushed it inward. Behind it, one of the bright blonde bargirls stood bent over a trough-like sink beneath a naked bulb, her head pulled back by the fist wrapped in her ponytail; it belonged to a youth in a camouflage parka and combat boots, addressing himself with single-minded emphasis to the posterior revealed by the brevity of her denim skirt. She abused Shaw’s intrusion while ash fell from the delinquent guard’s cigarette over the rainbow tattoo on the small of her back; the latter slowed their conjugation and with one hand swung the assault rifle from his shoulder at Shaw’s features. He retreated slowly, looking into the pink-pencilled pout of the older barmaid as she sat upon a high stool, a glass of white spirit at her elbow.
The stove-side conclave adjourned, the sound of shuffled benches drawing the alujha guard from his tryst into the bar, zipping up his pants as he emerged. Shaw looked to his colleagues expectantly as they stepped out onto the street, hunching against the slight slant of the drizzle.
“It was positive.” Wessner assured him, against the weight of his own frown.
"You got a location?" They headed south along the side of the road, the few headlights pushing past them blurred by the mist beading around their eyes.
“Posted on the sat nav... advised on terrain, ordinance...”
“What’d they want?”
“They took a five year NOMO.” Shaw stopped before the turn they were about to take, blinking into the weather; Wessner’s scowl deepened as he looked back toward him. “Is there something you want to say, Shaw?” The demand turned Amis’s head to them as though pulling string knotted beneath his chin.
“These crews know we don’t have a presence out here... they want cash, not non-molestation bonds... they’ve been all about buying land since the eighties.”
Wessner shook his head as though at an absurdity.
“You're saying I should run this entire operation off of hearsay? We gave them what they asked for... what is your personal experience with this genera?” he demanded.
“Eight years, six campaigns, five on point.” The taller man’s stare faltered.
Shaw's impetus carried him past both men and onto the narrow lane running from the main road, the clay turning his boots a claggy yellow by the time he had made their billet in the hamlet’s collective-era grainstore, its blockwork stained with long streaks from the rusting lights on its facade. Josephine sat on a ply chair, eating her rations from a foil tray. Eight black sleeping bags were laid out in rows upon the concrete in the rear of the hangar-like structure; the conscripts assigned to them stood in a line with their hands clasped to the backs of their heads, their faces pressed to the furthest wall in an attitude of punitive immobility. She glanced up at Wessner as he brought his scowl inside, shaking the rain from his jacket and staring at the arrangement of his personnel. One of the entailed men turned slightly toward them and began to speak, shouting loudly over the blade-like tone still screaming in his head, but Josephine reached again for the poison-orange fob clipped to her belt and chastened his presumption. Wessner leant over her while she cornered the last element of her meal against the tray with her fork.
“I left orders for them to be sleeping off their air tranqs.” he hissed.
“I deal with verbal insub before it escalates.” she told him. He shook his head bitterly and looked back toward the punishment detail.
“Hit your bunks. We break at o-four hundred.” he declared. “Shaw... first watch.”
Shaw took a rain-damp chair sited by the door.
C O N T I N U E D N E X T W E E K
© céili o'keefe do not reproduce
From descriptions I was expecting something quite blue and clean, but the opposite is true; Cruella is a dirty deep red, a little more subdued and brown-leaning than Nars Mascate, a little duller and less red-red than MAC Russian Red. This almost-chestnut quality is deeply submerged but definitely there; you can see it in the warm indoor-sunshine swatch directly below and even in the tube shot further down to the right there. Comparisons are MAC unless stated.
Never underestimate a big red's ability to balance any other facial issues you might have, real or imagined; you'd be amazed how it sort of cancels out my whacky teeth and guy-type nose, for instance. I've come to love my teeth and nose but it's nice to take a break from them now and then. Know what I'm saying?
Russian Red, Cruella, Ruby Woo, Ruffian Red, Studded Kiss, Mascate
very neutral daylight, pretty accurate colour
This week's MsT will be brief because I'm traversing a fucking cold South Island at present.
Annnnndddd that's about it :)
Will be posting midweek. Mwah. In the meantime, Michael, my 2nd favourite FF thing.
Daylight caught her eyes with its slanting, assaultive slivers as Susan leant out across the stone footing the archway. The contents of her stomach poured in a long slick down the rain-streaked rock below; frothy golden bile signaled their end, its way greased by the liquids she had already divulged. Coughing out the last of it, she lay in silence on the broad sill with her arms compressed beneath her, the bass pounding in the hotly bloated sections of her face racing with her heartbeat. Her knee crushed a box of UHT milk lying on the floor and the thought of it pushed her out again over the drop, the rolling heave answered only by stained saliva and she slid down to lie against the wall. Though vertigo had abated, its violence was redeployed by the infection in her head until light and sound began to distort at its evil behest. Susan heard hinges grinding as something distant and academic and felt the hands beneath her arms as half-imagined adjuncts to her desire for her makeshift bed, but she was laid out on stone instead of mounded needles. She lifted her head to cough again and dry-retch, spitting out the taste of the necrotic tooth. Someone wiped her chin with something soft and warm. In the midst of screwing up her face she looked into the bright colours of the brothers' stares and grew still, breathing slowly.
"It's better..." she croaked, trying to rise between them.
They ignored the shabby perjury, the cordon of fait accompli closing in an arc as she was forced back down, Sachiin taking her head and shoulders into his lap until the stripe of silver in Edward's hand became a knifeblade and she cried out, scrambling from torpor into desperate rigor and kicking out. Her feet caught a hold on Edward's trousers and shoved him backward, surprising him with the strength that was left to her. He reached across and seized her left arm, using it to drag her toward him and secure her head in the crook of an elbow while he pinned her flailing legs with one of his own.
"Get off me, you... fucking sadistic mental case!" she snarled, still twisting in his grasp; his hold tightened until she conceded and lay stiffly, breathing hard and shying from the hand he laid against her cheek. It found the buried heat and brought his fingers to the broken premolar directly despite the clenching of her jaw, a measure she was compelled to give up as blood poured from her gums. Susan screwed her eyes closed. "Don't let him do it... not him, please... I don't trust him..." she sobbed. Sachiin glanced up at his brother as she lapsed into despond between them, tears pooling in the hand he slid beneath her cheek. Edward loosed his hold, settling her head on his thigh and stowing her hair behind her ear.
"Prends ton courage á deux mains." he told her. Blinking up at him slowly, she looked to Sachiin, who closed his hands around hers. Edward slid back her lip with the side of his thumb and in his free hand flipped the knife, swung the horn stock downward and struck the dead tooth loose. While she coughed out a cry he tore it free and Sachiin spat a wad of bark into his hand, watching the new blood well and flush the wound before applying his palliative chemistry, taking her in both arms and speaking again into her ear. The task discharged, Edward drew the face cloth from the pail and dropped the extracted tooth into the water.
Susan was grateful to be able to lie on her side in the darkness, carefully tonguing the smooth new vacancy between her teeth and wishing the scent of the needles padding her repose had proved more soporific. Beside her on his naked back lay Sachiin, arms strewn beneath his head and a rifle set between him and the dark legs of the painted horse, as indifferent as ever to exposure in his somnolence. Her restive gaze wandered across his softly glowing pallor until his arm slid out around her seemingly of its own volition; she shrugged it off and spread her sleeping bag across him, sighing as it sloughed away. The wind had dropped and settled stasis on the gorge, allowing her the sounds conveyed beneath its auspices; fluting south-bound trains of migrant birds, the tiny, squeaking-wood cries of bats hawking across the colonnade and the languid repeat of her companion's breathing. That he would never be conscious of the beauty he wore in repose was a notion that added to the mass that held sleep so steadfastly at bay.
Between her own slow breaths came a distant, concerted strike or clatter, strangely repetitious and insistent; she sighed, sat up and eased her feet into her boots. He handed her the rifle without opening his eyes, which she accepted and then abandoned by the door.
The zip tab beneath her chin chimed as she climbed down the outer steps, her hand against the cold wall of the hillside. Low clouds leant the night its sequestered nature and pallid reflet, loosing harbinger flakes that dissolved against her outline as they drifted earthward, under no apparent duress from gravity. At the bottom of the flight she sat down and pushed off the landing stone with both hands, onto the broken suggestion of a path that skirted the base of the pile toward what might once have been its kitchen gardens, the stretch of half-leveled slope upon which the alujha had stood to issue their complaint. Blocks of toppled parapet lay strewn across its width like pieces swept from an enormous chess board and stamped into the ground, casting little shadow.
Edward stood amongst them beside a great cache of windfall timber. He swung skyward then hurled down the head of an axe dragged from a store in the bowels of the ruin; the ancient implement sectioned the limbs with little aid from its dull edge, driven deeply into the wood with a force that shuddered through his daunting frame. His pullover hung from a waiting branch like the upper half of a form he had abandoned. The crack of the blows flew back at him from the wall then away into the encroaching forest, the trees standing as though they had climbed the slope to satisfy a morbid curiosity. Susan stood hoping for an acknowledgment, but he did not pause to look at her and she sat down on a cap stone in a hunch against the cold, her mood settling around her like the sleeping bag, imposing its dense black presence between her spine and lungs.
Within the fixed frame of her stare and its own mechanized trajectory, his shape suffered shade-like alterations so fluid and persistent that she was forced to blink them away before they became too disturbing. They led her to ponder what he battered so unceasingly when the wood began to blur; through his eyes, she saw so much lie down beneath the blade that she ceased to wonder at his dedication and began to make her own grim offerings, throwing the aborted shapes of spite and insufficiency under the steel. The snow did not melt on his shoulders as he worked, but lay in narrow drifts until it slid away along his back under its own weight. Susan could not bring herself to examine the disfeatured archives on his arms, her stare falling instead to the naked foot with which he pinned the branches and its narrow adjacency to the point where the blade cleaved them. That she minded its atrocious potential more than he did seemed a thing of inexplicit poignancy, referring again to their dispirited impasse until clarity urged her to her feet.
He had set down the heavy haft and stooped to toss the cut wood over the wall, where it cleared the parapet and clattered audibly on the floor of the yard. Her careful navigation of the slope toward him caused him finally to pause, albeit with an expression that should have halted the intrusion. Frowning to herself as she stepped over the branches, Susan encircled him with both arms, turning her head against him.
“We do love you, Kala'amātya.” she sighed. “Please don’t be so sad.”
He smelled of the night and green fir balsam and stood completely still, feeling so much like and yet unlike his brother that she suffered a moment of baffling agnosis, meeting reserve where Sachiin wore invitation, a desolate parity with the granite of the ruin and the snow that fell around them so that she might not have distinguished him from either.
“Let me go.” he said, almost in resignation.
“Make me.” she replied, frowning in the expectation that he might. “Thank you... for my tooth, and... everything.”
“Tout le plaisir est pour moi.” he assured her. Susan released him, but grasped the arm he offered as she stumbled backward over unseen timber. She stooped to pick up one of the lengths, shuffling a small way down the slope and wheeling her arm in a circle before letting the piece fly in the hope it would clear the parapet, which it did not, hitting the wall and bouncing back at them. He put out a hand and caught it before it could strike her, committing it to the yard himself and shaking his head faintly at the smile she turned to him. Her gaze followed him to the edge of the cut wood, where he began to sort the pieces too large to throw.
"Do you mind... being called Kala'amātya?"
"Not any more." he admitted. She was led toward her few coherent notions of Helaine de Marchand, imagining her voice as the analgesic agency that had cleansed the word of its pernicious connotations. She bowed her head and blew warmth against her hands.
"I am sorry, for calling you a sadist..."
Dragging another branch from the pile, he shrugged in a brief concession.
"Never apologize to one." The set of her mouth changed with her appreciation of the remark as he took up the axe again. The first log flew in two directions across the snow; Susan watched him halve another dozen lengths. “You look cold.” he added with his back to her, and she smiled at the unsubtle denotation; the crack and buffet of the wood proved so sapid that she was loath to leave it, but he looked to her and changed his grasp upon the weapon, and she shuffled off in the direction she had come.
C O N T I N U E D N E X T W E E K
© céili o'keefe do not reproduce
* Dear readers, please note: we've been having onsite link issues due to an underlying Weebly code problem, so if you're finding empty Category pages while browsing, please either use the Search window >>, or you can find most of what you're looking for in some of the main Sidebar links I've installed to the right there... at least, those with menu pages and single-word tags. I'm told this issue will be resolved soon, but I'm as annoyed as you are. To catch up on The Blackthorn Orphans, click H E R E. Thanks for your patience.
Well, maybe liked is the wrong word.
Birdman (Alejandro González Iñárritu, 2014)
So, Birdman. A visual ouroboros, an infinity loop through the muertos colours, infernal passages and moments of surreal exultation that is the neurotic middle aged mind and its buckshot-tattered ego. There is so much muscular excellence to recognise and ponder. Stunningly ambulatory direction and a welter of technical superlatives? Check. Chowder-chunky script? Passive-aggressive obscurity and incisive performance? Yep. Interesting fuzzy demarcation and a shitload of surgical-grade intergenerational metacritique? Super grown-up admissions about the shabby unspoken pointlessness and delusionality of it all? In spades. But also- heavy overworking, glutinous staginess, rubber band fatigue from all that visual flow and, for me personally, a certain verbose chewiness largely centred around Keaton's part because his acting has always rubbed me wrong.
Nevertheless, as a writer I bend the knee to any script that can make helpless, squirming subjects of such a self-regarding cast. It is a fucking beast of a thing, applied with the kind of gobsmacking assurance that makes everything else you've seen lately look fragile and equivocal and christ, I love to see that. Last night as the credits popped I felt a little assaulted and decided I was impressed but unmoved; on mature reflection, there is so much multifactorial accomplishment in Birdman that it doesn't matter if you're unresponsive to its inhabitants. It probably works best as a commentary even if that's not all that was intended. It is a spectacular achievement and we need a lot more of this shit. See it, support it.
Exodus: Gods & Kings (Ridley Scott, 2014)
Oh Christian Bale. I love thee well but you done fucked up by taking that cheque. Everything you heard about this gigantic pendulous fupa of a thing is true; the monolithic multilateral offensiveness, new and exotic forms of hammery (intentional and unintentional) inexplicable miscasting (quite apart from the blatant racism of their selections, also- Joel Edgerton: ha ha); I could go on until you begged me to stop. Bad design and art direction always bunch my undies and Exodus is a comprehensive craft fail on top of all that conceptual scatology, heaving with anachronistic props, ridiculous wardrobe, horrific makeup, cheesy, uneven effects, and the wrong horses, dammit. In short, a complete disregard for the incredible cultural and aesthetic achievements of Egyptian civilisation.
Which fits right in with its next level-embarrassing spirit of tastelessness and appropriation, running the spectrum from generalised brownface to lifting sequences wholesale from 300 (there are some breathtaking moments of plagiarism). Scott’s frankly inexplicable doting on his own material (who the fuck quotes Gladiator with a straight face?) is also in evidence, underscoring precisely what sort of blithe narcissism is at work here. That someone with their head stuffed so firmly up their arse could miss the ineffable brown coating their own output is a mystery for the ages. Go home, Ridley- you're drunk.
I should have resisted the urge to spectate this bollocks. I loathe christianity. It's all just a good crop of potatoes waiting to happen as far as I'm concerned, and I'm reminded by toxic tripe like Exodus that the obsessive cruelty and gloating relativism of organised religion is never more succinctly limned than in the very legends that it treasures. So if you're looking to wean yourself off that shit, brave the genital-numbing boredom and treat yourself to this hot, stinky slice of no-star Mosaic realness. If you're still religious, call me at home.
A Most Violent Year (J C Chandor, 2014)
A Most Violent Year reminded me that both Issac and Chastain probably went to very expensive performing arts schools. Like, constantly. Their slightly malfeasant NYC fuel oil distributors circa 1981 were so thickly redolent of their credentials that I had difficulty distinguishing this thing from some sort of advanced performance module, and from that observation you can possibly guess the trifling nature of my response. The film is fascinatingly academic to the point of perversity, eschewing lowbrow hooks like its fucking life depended on it. We should indulge this kind of wilfulness when it is serving up the good shit (see Birdman), but AMVY didn’t feed me much more than highly polished collegiate exposition; it swung and missed.
That’s the danger of staging a piece with such narrow, parochial specificity. A premise that offers so few intrinsic attractions can only ever be what you make of it, and in this case that is: not enough. The characters are not adequately delineated. There is a puzzling blindness to successful, organic emphasis, something I've seen so often lately and in a bunch of really disparate films. I know they’re trying to be all angular and challenging but it just feels like a string of missed marks. And so wilfully difficult becomes charmless, murky, period off-noir, pulling focus onto the mechanics of performance in lieu of the sleight and glamour of successful characterisation. Both leads go the distance with the kind of sheer force of will and projection that should have sold me their characters a hundred times over. Still no dice.
There are moments of masterful framing and diggable flow. I appreciated the even handed spread of authentic sleaze. But (and I've complained about this before) can we please give the nicotine stain filters a big fucking rest? Why, when we sit down to something 20th C, do we have to look at it through fucking yellow cellophane? A Most Violent Year isn't unreconstructed shite by any means; just don't expect to be enthralled or transported.
Unsure what species we're looking at here, but it's Silver Dollar Gum-esque, with smoother mottled bark, slightly more elongate leaves and these rayed anenome flowers that burst from their glossy little cups in the middle of winter.
Many Eucalypts are incredibly beautiful, though they are hardly recognised as such in New Zealand where they are regarded as an 'introduced' group, viewed more as a timber prospect and windbreak than appreciated for their innumerable aesthetic and environmental merits. Pearls before swine. Hardly anyone knows they were in fact native here until very recently, though you can guess this quite readily from both their obvious affiliation to much of our endemic flora and our native birds' response to the flowers, which verges on rapture.
Without Eucalypts, I very much doubt our populations of Tuis and Bellbirds would have recovered to their current extent. Wish people would consider that before poisoning and felling them just for the hell of it.
The Lovely R took these. He's a good boy.
Monday slash Tuesday: bad link revenge voodoo / insufficient funds for this scenario which international laws forbade some time ago even though they are enforced somewhat erratically /GOT
The GOT finale was about as satisfying and well-constructed as I expected. Did you personally feel like you received your promised allotment of mature shame-muff and penitent tittays, because you know chicks don't get agency without having to give up the pink at some point. Just the girls, though- just the girls; house rules.
I used to wonder about the particular shade of harping piqueristic misogyny so evident throughout this fuckfest and how it could be so embarrassingly unselfconscious, and then I saw a pic of the author which... was extremely informative. Yes, I'm that shallow but you know, so is the rest of the world and that explains a lot, really. It's not like I'm some fucking flawless dreamboat myself, but as a writer I'm aware that our fiction reflects our personal reality whether we like it or not, and let's just say that if GOT was the shadow of my attitudes and perceptions, I'd look into those.
If you're having link issues on this site lately (Categories is the worst offender at the moment although that's flowing over to blank landing pages from the pictorial sidebar) I apologise on behalf of Weebly who have also managed to mangle the dating of posts. We're in 2016 last time I looked, but that palpitating woosh you hear is not the sound of the space time continuum swishing past your ears, it's the blood squeezing through my temples as a result of Support-rage jacking my systolic pressure. I'm working on a new Selected Ravings menu page so check that out if you get a chance. If you're really looking for something specific you can still find it by scrolling patiently or using the Search button, which on our Mac devices almost always requires a two-step entry but I think I'm going to stop talking about this shit now before I lose my fucking mind and bite a stranger in the face.
It's not like I haven't thought about migrating my wildebeest arse over to Wordpress or some shit like that, but christ knows I don't fancy the issues they seem to have either, which seem scarier, even more code-y and expensive to resolve. Sort of wish Apple would come up with a blog platform but don't suppose there's much money in it. In my darkest moments I dream of a cynical blogger confederation, preferably mounted on steppe ponies, making orchestrated raids on private addresses and dorm rooms in search of code dweebs which we will drag out into the street in the small hours with bullwhips and roughly muster at pre-decided points throughout the developed world, preparatory to their installation as slaves interns in secluded bunkers where they will be rewarded with chocolate fudge piped through the lines taped to their heads and punished with One Direction mixtapes and electrodes and/or christian romance novels. And for that violent fantasy alone I will probably go to the back of the support cue and find my posts corrupted with homemade Wookie porn.
The circle of life.
Luckily, I will be taking a short trip out of town soon. Does it sound like I need it?
Have some Die Antwoord.
John Malkovich, Uma Thurman, and Swoosie Kurtz, “Dangerous Liasons”,
Château de Maisons-Laffitte, France, 1988. PHOTOGRAPH BY BRIGITTE LACOMBE.
See more of her accomplished capture in VF H E R E
Her hostess came forward and shooed the piglet from the dead game where it had fallen on the flags; she took them up and set them on the table between them, producing a folding, pearl-handled knife from the pocket of her sable. Petrouchka used the blade to strip the hares of their elastic hides, turning them over and dressing them without pause, except to lick the fresh blood from her fingertips.
“My mother’s mother, she was old bajorai countess from Kaunas... her family have many bad time. She say to us, know how to eat rabbit and you will never be slave." the vampyre began, small voice winding around Susan's shoulder though she spoke with an almost recessed disinterest. "Why do you leave from Gévaudan? Here is no place for you.”
Susan took a long time to reply.
“I’ll go if I’m not welcome.”
“Go? Where do you go? You know good hotel?” Tart amusement sharpened the vampyre’s smirk. “No... you won't go... you have what you want, so you stay here, feel sorry for you. You bite, but you can’t chew."
“Does this look like something I wanted?”
“You come here from Auberjonois, who care for you like prince... these two, they bring you safe, fight alujha for you... Kala'amātya, who hate to kill a thing that can’t talk back, he give these, and you have Sachiin, all for yourself, who has never said a word to you in anger, who live only to please you...”
"He lives whether I'm here or not."
Petrouchka wiped her blade on the dry fur, small teeth shining in the darkness of her sardonicism.
"Who must we blame for this outrage? Pauvre de toi." A wind had risen from the gorge, climbing up over the drop and blowing their hair across their faces. "What has happen, kotik? You see something of yourself and you don't like?" Her trenchant analysis met with a gaze that fell again toward the flagstones. "I think so. You find that face in mirror."
Misery intermingled with the poison leaking from Susan's tooth, striking down her will to speak in her own defence. Petrouchka obviated the need to do so by cutting sharply across the yard and scowling down over the wall onto the slope below where it lay thickly strewn with fallen debris.
“Qu’est-ce que tu veux?” she called, the sudden, argute volume of the demand lifting Susan’s head. “Allez-vous faire voir! Otyebis!” The vampyre’s curt manual dismissal, tossed out over the drop like refuse, translated her remarks. Three figures in hooded black and olive camouflage stood upon the hillside, their mirrored, skyward stares the last thing Susan could have wished for. Two of them shared enough of their dark, parochial physiques to have been brothers while the other wore a severe, shadow-like crop and two stars tattooed on his wide throat. In the midst of her affronting scorn Susan saw that her hostess quartered the strait of forest behind them, while the alujha persisted with their own argot, its imperfections antagonizing her further. "Zatk'nis, you pigs! Idi na khui! You don’t come here to tell to me... I tell to you! I am surioarã!” she shouted down at them, flying into a Russian tirade enlivened by the choicest local epithets while Fyodor stamped and squealed at the hem of her coat. Susan took herself back into the ruin, unable to bear the sound of their voices even as the brothers walked out of the trees behind the visitors with their rifles in their hands, absorbing the details of a situation they had overheard from halfway down the gorge.
Their business concluded on the slope below, Edward returned to the cheerless exposure of the roof where he found Petrouchka still partaking of those qualities. There they remained, together and apart through the unlamented hours that were the claim of the long-lived and the long dead. Behind them the moon bore her own waning scale toward the horizon, a pitted, barren planet in place of that distant emblem glimpsed between the structures of urbanity, the sky arrayed with stars that wheeled as though pinned to her black skirts. Petrouchka raised her head and voice together.
“All this time, all of this long way, and Helaine is still with you. I see her, in your eye.” she observed. “You are not alone, at least.” She shrugged her chin down into her coat. “It will be ugly winter... no place for that girl. I don’t like her always in front of me.”
“I told him to leave her in France."
"Pozhalujsta... you thought he would?"
"They won’t stay here.”
“And you? What do you do?”
“Rebuild some capital.”
She contemplated his response for some time before steeling herself to deal with more immediate concerns.
“These mudilo wolves, they have offend you? How many die for it?”
“No more than necessary.”
“I did not trust them, but they bring, from town for me, when I need...”
“If you need something, I'll go for it myself.”
“Maybe. Maybe, I don’t need, anymore. But these alujha, they are chefur govno... they crawl in from all over... next week, I don’t know which one I talk to, and you know a wolf as well as I... they will come back to you for this.” She smiled to herself, staring up into the impassive darkness. “You don’t care, I know… you want for them to do this, but Kala'amātya…” the vampyre urged, awaiting his gaze. “Look at me and ask if you can wash her off your skin with blood.”
C O N T I N U E D N E X T W E E K
© céili o'keefe do not reproduce
It's certainly a punchy shade, brighter than MAC Ruby Woo, for instance. Sort of like... a junior UD F-Bomb or Bite Pomegranate, but those guys are warmer, heavier and more badarse. Mix it with the adjacent Scarlet and you get an incredibly delicious stained-glass blackened cherry. Poppy's looking just a little bit crazy on my very white hand in some of these shots, so it might be best to refer to the tube pics for this shade, which are quite true.
Scarlet (below right) looks so thick and brown in the tube but again that lovely Bite formula elevates that stodginess, conferring a really delicious gothy, raisiny shiraz-stain-type vampishness.
BELOW: Bite Scarlet, Nars Terre de Feu, MAC Sin, Bite Poppy, MAC Ruby Woo, MAC Red
warm direct sunlight
This means anyone with a penchant for dark lip can wear this shade, be you marzipanish or chocolatey, except perhaps the self-made orange (you know who you are). And it's just so nice to wear, leaving my mouth feeling as though it's been kissing tender angel buttocks. No, Bite doesn't pay me for saying this, but they probably should.
BELOW RIGHT Poppy, Scarlet and the two shades combined, neutral outdoor light. Very accurate on my monitor.
Stages showing the process of Leon Pray’s taxidermy mounting an Antelope (Uganda Kob), canvas covered wood and wire underpinning with a sculpted head with horns, mount on wood blocks.
Monday slash Tuesday: Macbeth misappropriated budgerigars I'm not really sorry because they were very delicious cheesecakes.
< This is national news in New Zealand right now.
You won't hear me trying to shit all over the significance of budgie smuggling in the larger contexts of pro v amateur, general social deprivation and the urban psittacine diaspora but okay, that was a lie, yes you will, I'm doing it right now. Our thoughts are with the birds and their unassuming intellectual superiority to 98.7% of adjacent simians.
Anyway; Macbeth, latest filmic version of. Love me some Willy S and some Fassbender and Cotillard's no fucking slouch either so it's pretty safe to say I'm looking forward to this shit. Am so relieved they seem to have foresworn the hideous stageiness that inexplicably afflicts so many on-screen productions; why, I'll never know- if you're not actually live on a damn stage delivering thespian realness, why drag all those conventions into shot like a bunch of toilet paper stuck down the back of your fucking underwear?
The Lovely R and I revile most of Branagh's efforts for this very reason; his patent inability to inhabit rather than perform the roles drives us up the fucking wall. You can see him munching the damn words like a fucking camelid, jerking himself off to the sound of his own voice and the taste of it all. Covering oneself in glory should never devolve into auto-bukkake, but even a cursory glance at the Hamlet he put on with Kate Winslet et al would challenge a five-star gag reflex.
And while that highly dramatic reaction might deserve some Oscar noms of its own, this rant is not over. I'm not sure why so many approach Shakespeare so darn literally, like it's some holy font of all standards. His shit is a worthy vehicle, nothing more, nothing less; a buxom, well-framed pastiche of much older material that is begging to be remodelled and kicked around in turn precisely because it is so enduring and robust. Hell yes, Shakespeare is good. There is a cool degree of subtext and observation, the sort of delicious facility with language and bendy allusion that you can expect from any sophisticated practitioner etc. But people should flush the idea that it is definitive or worthy of the reverential observation and minute dissection it receives, and I say that with complete confidence because if there's one thing I've learned in my years on this planet it's that nothing really is.
In Shakespeare's ghetto humour and beguiling humanity there is so much explicit indication that he did not take himself half as fucking seriously as the plonkers who are mouthing his words to this day; as a writer I love that. As a member of the audience, I am frustrated that this simple truth is so seldom trusted and expressed. Let's hope Michael and Marion got the fucking memo.
Or you can just skip that whole echoing pontification and catch some King Missile like back in the day.
It was going to be Gary and Melissa but that shit's private lol.