Friday, April 8, 2016

gay pair-eee

Gay as in happy. Pair-ee as in Paris, with a French accent.

I just returned from Paris, where I spent a week flopped on the futon in my parent's studio apartment. My parents have become quite the jet-set travellers in their old age, and have recently acquired a 1/8-th share in a "quaint" little shithole 300+ year old apartment in the 2nd Arrondissement in the City of Lights. The location couldn't be better, and the apartment couldn't be dumpier. But hey, the price was right! *free*

We tromped all over the city, shopping on the ritziest street and in flea markets, eating at urban hipster hot spots and old world historical landmarks, saw Mona at the Louvre and Barbie (the one that dates Ken) at Les Arts Decoratifs. It was a blast, despite the rain that persisted the whole week.

I forgot my razor at home and embraced my inner French girl. I ate loaves upon loaves of bread and basically an entire government cheese wheel amount of every melty rich mama-animal-teat- producing goodness I could. I drank gallons of wine. And I'm pretty sure my waist is smaller than when I left home.

French women eat. They eat carbs and fat and they drink and they are all thin. They might work out, but you would never know. In the whole city I saw one gym and one yoga studio. In a week of wandering through packed streets I saw two women wearing activewear. French women dress. And French women smoke. eww.

I'd like to be more French - eat rich delicious foods, drink rich delicious wines, dress with purpose each day, maybe even smoke a cigarette or two. Ok, maybe not the smoking (ewww).

this cigarette is so angry!

But food is different in France. There you buy your bread from the boulangerie where it has been freshly baked that day, you buy your cheese from the fromagerie where it has also been made fresh. Your wine comes from grapes raised without pesticides and is monitored by a commission yearly to be kept to a certain standard. Restaurants offer what is fresh and local and in season.

Here in the states we shop at huge conglomerate grocery stores that stock huge conglomerate bread and cheese that comes from some warehouse made by industrial machines and unskilled workers. Our produce is available year round thanks to genetic modifications, pesticides, and other unnatural growing processes.

Clothes are different here. Jeans and t-shirts and yoga pants are all anyone wears. Even the high end stores sell the same casual clothes, just at 10 times the price. Kanye will give you a plain white cotton t-shirt for $120, the Gap will give you the same thing for $12.  Lululemon gives you stretchy pants for $100, Target has them for $30.

It didn't used to be like this. My mother's generation hardly ever even wore pants, much less jeans. They set their hair on Sunday night and wore it purposefully styled every day. Even a casual outfit was styled.

Women in New York City come closest to the lost era of style in America and French women, but if you get on the subway you'll still see every assortment of clothing option possible.

As much as I yearn for the days where women dressed I can't say I didn't enjoy going to Target and the grocery store today in my active-wear, with no makeup on and my greasy hair shoved under a baseball cap. Is it possible to have both? Methinks I need another trip to Paris for "research"

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