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Author Updates

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Meeting with publicist at Hotel de Crillon yesterday complicated by presence of Madonna in hotel for the week. Huge crowds standing in the rain in front of hotel under umbrellas. All silent and reverent, as if waiting for a head of state. Lobby of hotel full of gilded screens so Madonna (and children?) could pass through unseen. Extremely tasteful. A cry from the crowd and then limousines pull off. Oddly enough, crowds do not disburse. Apparently have been there 24/7 since Her arrival.

Party at the Senat last night. Glamorous surroundings, disappointing food. As always.

It must be a serious character flaw and personality disorder and mark of intellectual inferiority that while here, I’m still most interested still in the pathetic spectacle of the Jon Benet Ramsey case. Turns out Karr is a hoax. As if that wasn’t obvious from the start? Convinced his facial surgery was an attempt to make himself look more like his love object.

Feels like fall here. Better than the much dreaded killer heatwaves.

Posted by Stephen @ 05:47 AM EST

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Arrived in Paris Saturday morning despite forgetting passport, fighting massive traffic jam en route to airport, Boston-style subway glitch, massive crowds at security checks, and thunderstorms. Was anxious about everything, but all anxieties--about flight, language, promotion, etc.--disappeared as soon as I was handed ticket. (Approximately 30 minutes before plane departed.) Pilot gave stern warnings about no “funny business” (passing around cell phones) and no “bad behavior” (threatening flight attendants), and no “stupidity” (packing dynamite in luggage). Followed by standard suggestion that passengers “relax and enjoy the flight.” Okay. Orange sunset with Nova Scotia below.

Rented apartment in the Marais perfect. High ceilings, funky furniture, all windows looking toward courtyard or (even more appealing) blank wall. Very quiet. Neighborhood outside silent courtyard throbbing with gay nightlife. Excellent for…ummm…walking.

Saw dance spectacle at Versaille last night. Argentinean dance troop performing to rock music on stage in the middle of one of those decadent lakes. Important spectators in little rowboats, the other 5,000 of us on bleachers. Spectacular costumes and makeup. Roller skates. Lots of dazzling fireworks timed to the music and perfectly placed to rouse those nodding off from jet lag. Went to cast party afterwards where dancers with open shirts and traces of gold leaf makeup on chests. Superb food, although hard to get to with dancers (who'd actually earned the nourishment) gorging.

Heard from director of True Enough this afternoon. My “role” in film on Thursday has been expanded. Will include passionate kiss from character playing Pauline Anderton, singer in the novel and movie. Flossing teeth as I type.

Party at the Senate tomorrow night to honor 12 books coming out this fall including ATS or, in French, Sex et Dependence. Really should buy new shoes or at least cufflinks since twine used to hold together cuffs of one nice shirt probably won’t play well there. Must ask Antonio about used clothing shops. On the other hand, expectations appropriately low for Americans in this regard. Will have to go with it.

Posted by Stephen @ 08:02 PM EST

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