A very honest and emotional interview….

28 11 2011

Monah Li to Host Show on Indie1031.com Tomorrow, Nov. 27th – LA …
We had a great time last week sitting down with design icon and author Monah Li . We shot a video blog of the designer (currently being edited) in her chic new …
www.lafashionweek.com/…/monah-li-to-host-show-on-indie1




MEN IN CLOTHES

3 06 2011

MEN IN CLOTHES

Since I’m a fashion designer, men always ask me for advice.

From “How would you dress me?”, “What do you think of this T-Shirt?” and “Am I stylish enough for your taste, I mean you’re the expert…?” to outright “Would you take me shopping?” I get all that and everything in between. I don’t remember one man, not one single guy who didn’t ask at least once at one point – usually in the beginning.

Now, I live in a stressful, competitive and quite snarky career environment, where it is way too easy to commit a style faux pas.

Even after 20 plus years in this business, there are days where I am totally intimidated to go to work. I change my clothes 15 times, like a teenager before a first date. And the, as soon as I arrive, I wanna run back home and change again.

So, I understand why guys don’t know how to dress. How could they? What’s out there isn’t very interesting or creative because most men are just as scared as me to be the butt of a joke when they dare to choose something that is a tiny bit different.

I love men in (well-fitting) suits. It’s the hottest look in my opinion – manly, strong and confident. But after a time period where I wore men’s suits myself, I know how uncomfortable and stifling that can be.

So, what else is there? Euro-Trash? Hmmm. No. Not really. Surfer duds? Depends on the guy. If they are obviously not surfers, it usually doesn’t work.

The man in my last long-term relationship dressed really understated, expensive and stylishly unstylish. I liked that look, but all that black drew a lot of glee and jokes. Shopping with him was a many hours nightmare and I never wanted to be in his (always cool) shoes, witnessing the agony and fear in choosing his outfits.

If it were up to me, I would drag my man to Traffic in the Beverly Center. Everything there looks so fucking cool and tasteful, and even though the merchandise there is definitely geared towards gay costumers, there are hundreds of pieces that look understated and sexy and as long as one steers away from the ruffled shirts and jewelry, it all works to bring out the best in a guy.

But in reality, guys are clueless and like I said before, I can’t blame them.

My friend’s ex husband used to dress in shorts and little T-Shirts and at 5’3 that wasn’t a good look for him. She bit her tongue until he showed up one day in very short red shorts with a red T-shirt and she finally said to him that he “looked like a stereo typical color blind computer engineer at the company picnic.” They are divorced now…

My other friend’s boyfriend wears tasseled loafers with unbuttoned lose shirts and if he wasn’t so young and hot, he could easily slip into “Carpet Salesman” territory. So, who cares?

I also don’t care that my cute sometimes-date always wears lumberjack shirts, no matter where we go. He pulls it off with height, youth and so much intelligence that I don’t mind, specially, once it comes off.

What I will run from: that ugly, uninspired uniform of a beige pants with a navy blazer. ‘Nuff said.

So, now what about too small concert t-shirts or shirts with gas station logos? That’s a little tricky, personally. It falls into the same category than women over a certain age in Daisy Dukes and cowboy boots.

But if that T-Shirt is a sentimental item and means something to the guy? My (painful) experience with that is, that I wish I’d headed my own advice of “Shut the fuck up!” In the end what does it matter?

There is one exception to the T-Shirt with a message or print on it:

Todd Bemis’s legendary “Mickey Mouse on the Cross” shirt. This design is so genius that it overrides all my other rules and dislikes.

Even I wore that shirt and would again wear it if I only could find it. The only picture I have of it is my three-year-old daughter in it. If this isn’t the cutest and funniest shirt ever, I’ll eat my (plain) black t-shirt.





THE EARLY DAYS OF WONDER from Showroom of Perfections

27 04 2011

THE EARLY DAYS OF WONDER

“Struck Sober”. I’d heard this expression over and over during my 20 years in a 12-step program that shall be unnamed because I respect the concept of anonymity. But let me just say that it was the wrong program for me. I mean wrong because it didn’t address my real addiction.

All those years, up to five times a week, I was praying and hoping that those rooms, filled with loving and struggling people would heal me. I silently replaced the word “alcohol” or “drugs” with “food”.

I loved those meetings so much, all my friends, lovers and husbands, they all went there and I couldn’t imagine my life without the structure and companionship of this Ersatz Family. I really tried and kept coming back, as they say.

But sadly, most of the time, as soon as it was over, I would stop at a Ralphs or Trader Joes and greedily grab what I needed to stay sane.

Bagels, Cereal, whipped cream cans, Ice cream, pasta on days when I needed to be careful with money, butter and honey and bags of nuts; all carelessly thrown in my shopping cart. I would look over my shoulder and sneak around isles when I recognized anybody who might know me. Having a kid made those overloaded carts somewhat explainable, but still…I had no time for mindless chitchat when I needed to get my drugs into my car and home as fast as possible.

Then I’d spend half the night cooking and eating and throwing up. In order to entertain myself, I had become super-creative with the way I combined food. I came up with meals that might even have been delicious, certainly novel and, well, a little strange perhaps, but I managed to never bore myself.

No wonder, my clothing designs had started to lack life and luster, considering where all of my creativity went to.

But, I always assured myself, at least I’m not shooting heroin.

The truth was quite different. Because I felt worse now then when I was drugging, drinking, wasting my nights in clubs and with one-night stands into the early mornings.

Because there is nothing lonelier than bulimia – it can only be done alone.

All other addictions involve at least some form of social interaction – from cooking dope together, sharing needles and joints, drinking in bars and at parties, sex with strangers, gambling, shopping – as shameful and destructive all those vices are, at least they involve others. And I’m all about others. I crave people, noise, distractions, chaos, love and friends and being stuck in this particular hell of isolation was so painful, that I often wondered why it wasn’t me who died from a raptured esophagus or a heart attack. I mean, it happened all the time, to other women, so why not me?

But now, back from India – I AM struck abstinent. I’m done. It’s not something I choose. That moment on the plane where I kept that sandwich down was the moment that changed everything.

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve been praying and wishing and praying some more to get to this place. I’ve done it all. From therapy and meditation, Kabbalah, inpatient and outpatient hospital treatments, medications, acupuncture, Marianne Williamson lectures, anti-parasite-diets, every New-Age and spiritual novelty, obsessive work, success, motherhood, marriage, divorce, feeling-diaries, 12 step work, Yoga, …way, way, way too many desperate methods to count – I really wanted to be free from my tormentor and I had the bills and hours to prove it.

After so many years of helpless struggle, freedom from bulimia meant so much more than just not binging and purging. By now, I attach magical and totally unrealistic qualities to my recovery.

In my fantasy, once I’m free from this, I imagine myself as a perfect being. Free from my obsession with Payne, hugely successful as a designer and writer, inspired and happy, at ease with everybody and myself – a parade of magical and fulfilling moments with nothing to interfere in my own recovery paradise.

But guess what? I’ve stopped and I’m more out of my mind now than I’ve ever been.

I can’t disappear in food anymore. I can’t blame “it” anymore. I’m so far from perfect and inspired, I’m so anxious and scared and so fucking hungry all the time, that I want to scream, pull off my skin and run so fast until my mind and my feelings hopefully catch up to one another.

Now I know. Now I know why I needed this hell and why I could not stop, no matter how badly I wanted to.

I’m raw and vulnerable. Hello, life!

As my days of abstinence add up, my world falls apart. I lose my designer job. My already always-rocky relationship with Payne becomes a minefield of constant aggravation. I’ve worshipped him and given him my undivided attention for so many years and he is used to his little co-dependant, submissive and always available wife. But without my tranquilizer of food and shame, I start to see the cracks in his charismatic and handsome veneer. He falls and crashes from the pedestal I’ve built for him, faster than I can scream, “Wait. Stay up there. Don’t you dare to become human and weak!”

Without the humiliation and my secret, I start to doubt his power. I’m like a teenager who realizes that her parents are not perfect.

It’s impossible to respect him without the illusion that he is the powerful, monstrous and all-knowing man-god we both need him to be. I’m starting to rebel against my role as muse and listener. I don’t agree with his view of the world anymore and that is another problem I did not anticipate.

A stooped little lady lugs a few grocery bags across the street in front on us. Payne shakes his head and sighs:  “Look how sad and hopeless she is. She has nothing to live for. Man, life is just so sad”.

“Why? How would you know?” I challenge him. “She could be totally at peace with herself.”

“I don’t know how to explain it. I just know,” He pouts.

He turns to me and stares me down. “I can’t do this anymore with you. I can’t be with somebody who doesn’t even like me,” he moans and cracks his knuckles.

“Ha. Because I don’t agree with your depressing observation that, by the way, might be totally wrong?”

“No, No, it’s not only that. It’s because you don’t like me anymore. Have you noticed that you’re never on my side? I mean, lately? ” He steps on the gas.

I surprise myself when I yell. “I like you just fine, but what you call liking sounds to me like you need me to worship you at all times and agree with everything, or all hell breaks lose. I’m a person, not a parakeet.”

He shrinks back, as far away as he can get without falling out of the car.

“No baby.” He looks confused. “You are not the women I love anymore. Who are you?”

I laugh. “What kind of question is that?”

“I don’t know you anymore. You criticize me every chance you get. You make fun of me in front of our friends. You make me feel so unloved and lonely.” Now he looks sad and I wish I could swallow my words.

“Let’s just go home. I don’t feel like going to the movies anymore.” He stares straight ahead, his face a mask of impenetrable pride.

“Drama Queen” I mumble just loud enough for him to hear. I sneer. “Okay, asshole. Life sucks for this lady. She is sad and hopeless. Everything sucks and we’ll all die from global warming and our kids have no future. Happy now?”

He is right. He doesn’t know who I am but neither do I.

I’ve never told him. All those years of disappearing in bathrooms, showing up late and pale, the compulsive teeth brushing, the huge amounts of food I’d consume while remaining frail and underweight, the unworldly dentist bills he pays without getting his own teeth fixed – he is used to that. He has stopped long ago to ask me because all I ever give him are lies.

I put my boots on the dashboard. “Great, so now we can’t even go see a movie? Fucking wonderful. There goes another Sunday with Payne.”

“I don’t trust you. I can’t deal with the possibility of you starting a fight and a scene in a public place.” He says without looking at me.

I cringe when I see the hurt in his posture. But I have to say it anyway: “That’s all you care about. A scene in a public place. Fine, Fuck you too then.”

We drive home in stony silence.

While he prepares a loveless meal of beans, brown rice, kale and an acidic drink that smells like water from a public pool– it’s another new and most likely very expensive diet that is supposed to clear his liver – I tie up my running shoes, hop up the stairs and as soon as I’m around the corner of our house, I get on the phone with my Kabbalah Coach. She is the only person who knows the truth. She’s been working with me for months on this and until three weeks ago, I would always stuff my face during our phone sessions. I wonder if she knows this.

“I can’t stand this. I hate him. He is such a dick. I just want to leave him” I whine hysterically. “I mean, how am I supposed to be in recovery with this?”

Of course, she doesn’t agree with me. I should have known better. She has met Payne a few days ago after a reading. He showered her with his polite and benevolent smile while he signed her book with a personal sounding and probably very funny quote. Of course, she I smitten, like everybody always is after those events.

“Tell him the truth.” She suggests, “ Allow him to understand, to get to know you. You are not giving him the chance to love you by keeping this secret. It’s time. The light has brought you here and …”

“Ya, Right.” I snap “ Oh, by the way, Payne: I’ve been lying about me and everything for 12 years. And I need you to be okay with what I’m about to tell you. I don’t think this is gonna go down well. I’m sorry, but you are no help either.”

I hang up, frustrated and irritated. I run uphill until I feel my blood burning and pulsing inside my hungry stomach.

I catch my breath and just stand there. The Mt. Washington bird sanctuary hums with late afternoon insect activity. I watch a glimmering ruby ball of summer sun sink behind a black silhouette of palm trees, bathed in shadows of warm orange and yellow streaks of smog-clouds. A lonely airplane glides silently across the evening sky. The air finally cools off after another brutally Los Angeles scorcher.

I feel a gentle breeze on my skin. I mean, I really feel it. I’m in this moment with all this unbelievable beauty around me and soon it will be night and another morning and then another day and another night. My first thought when I wake up every morning makes me want to jump out of bed and jump up and down inside my new life: I’m free. I didn’t throw up yesterday, I’m fucking free.

I touch my stomach and it is flat and smooth.

I’m really doing this. Oh God. I really am. I haven’t thrown up in 21 days and I’m not fat. Something inside me, or outside me – I have no idea – is giving me a strength I never knew I had. My most stubborn believe that I clung to with every inch of my fading life, that without my bulimia, I would be the “Girl with the pretty face, if only….” is turning out to be totally wrong.

I’m aware that I’m measuring this miracle with a very shallow stick: As long as I can do this and not gain weight, there must be something like a God. But for now, that’s deep enough.





FAT GLAMOUR

14 04 2011

 

 

FAT GLAMOUR

 

I show up to work in my new studio on Saturday at 7 AM. I got fabrics and everything I need, but what I don’t know yet, is how to make a garment from the beginning. I’ve learned to sew quite well during the last three months, but I have no idea about pattern making.

 

I find a huge piece a brown wrapping paper and pin it to the wall. Then I draw an outline of my shape – something I will do many times in Eating Disorder Therapy – and cut it out.

 

Werner hobbles downstairs. His leg is in a cast, but even though he’s obviously in pain, he is in a friendly mood. He watches my attempt to figure out how to make a dress and laughs.

“I’ve never seen anything like that, but it looks like fun”. He stands close to me and I can smell shampoo and cologne on him – the smell from his upstairs hair salon.

 

Here it comes, I think. Payday. My dad always said that nothing is free in this world, especially not from older men who are generous and attractive. Well, so what, you’ve done worse for less, goes through my mind, but still, I step away from him.

 

He reads my mind. “Don’t worry, I’m into the very young ones, my weakness. I love the really young girls. Not to offend you, you are hot and attractive, but I’m taken. My little Yugoslavian apprentice upstairs is my girlfriend and I’m too old to keep up with her. You’ll meet her soon and I want you to make a very special dress for her. Deal?”

“Ok. Deal. I’d love to, Werner. But I have a lot to learn first. See this cut-out figure? That’s not how it’s done, but I’ll make it work somehow. I always do”

We look at the shapes, now spread out on the floor and I sigh.

“I can’t believe what a fat pig I am. Look at this. I used to be half of this”

“Don’t ever call yourself a fat pig again if you want to keep this place. The last thing I need here is a self-hating woman who infects my girls upstairs. You’re juicy and curvy and god dammit, accept it or throw yourself in a diet.”

I know better than to tell him about my countless unsuccessful diets. I’ve been on diets since I was 12 and the only ones that ever made me skinny, were speed and heroin.

“Naw, I’m not up to that right now.” I reply.

“Well then, work with what you have. I must go back upstairs, but I’ll send you one of my clients, a really nice lady who owns the restaurant next door. I told her about you and she is excited to meet you. You will like her”

 

With this he leaves me alone with my tools and fabrics. I start to work on my dress and somehow I figure out how to transform my two-dimensional copy of myself into a three-dimensional pattern. I take a deep breath and cut into my very expensive black knit fabric and then I just sew. A few hours later, with music blaring – Einsturzende Neubauten and The Fall – I try it on and I have to admit that this dress is really cool.

 

It’s tight and long and goes all the way up to my neck. I’m fat, but this dress makes me look curvy and sexy and when I check myself out in the huge mirrors, I feel almost high.

 

When Werner comes down to my cellar with his apprentice in tow, her almost unreal beauty floors me. She is skinny, of course, but so gorgeous, that she would even be beautiful with 30 pounds more on her. She talks in a little girl voice, but what she says sounds intelligent and way older than her 17 years.

“Werner, look at this dress! I want one just like it. Please? It’s just so, so, I don’t now, different and mysterious. I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Werner winks at me. “Of course, baby! You’ll get one just like it. Monah, can you make a trace of her like you did before? I mean if it’s convenient for you, I’m sure you have hundreds of other things to do?”

“No, It’s my pleasure. I have enough fabric left over anyway.”

He kisses her on the cheek and leaves us alone.

 

While I work with her, she tells me about her drunk and violent father and she cries when she talks about her mother and her siblings. She lives with Werner outside the city in a converted farmhouse and is safe from her father’s abuse. I start to really like her.

A few hours later, she has a similar dress like mine and she looks stunning.

 

A warm feeling of accomplishment and happiness spreads through my body and my mind. I’m good for something. After all, I’m not a useless mental patient without a future, except relapses and prostitution anymore.

 

Werner loves the dress on her and invites me to come upstairs and get my hair done. For free. Until then, I’ve died and cut my hair myself all my life and even though, the half shaved, but grown in punk rock haircut was good enough to dance in LA Clubs, I’m ready for a little bit of professional help.

 

There is a reason he is Vienna’s number one hairdresser. He is a genius. He cuts and dyes and blows my messed up hair into a chic bob that is worthy of a blooming designer. The person that looks back from the mirror is a hot and confident woman, ready to take on the challenge to do what I always knew I was meant to be.

 

From this point on, that’s what all my designs are all about. Show it off. I don’t hide my fat ass in baggy jeans anymore. No more overalls, no more flat boots. I’m glamorously fat and no, I’m not proud of it, but this is the beginning of some kind of acceptance.

 

While I’m feverishly cutting and sewing, I have no idea that this will be the cornerstone of my career, but I’m aware that I’m on to something.

 

Most women I know are not happy with their bodies, everybody is on a diet or some kind of program to be thinner than they are and it’s just a never-ending cycle. I personally don’t know anybody who has really lost weight. Except Sassa, the girl I used to turn tricks with before I went to America. But she is dying from AIDS.

 

If I can find a way to design clothes that make me feel all right the way I am, than others will respond to that too. I don’t know how right I am, I have no idea that soon, I will be known and celebrated for that kind of work. Right now, I’m just so happy to work and not crave drugs and I don’t even notice that I have forgotten to eat.





MY WINE CELLAR STUDIO

5 04 2011

MY WINE CELLAR STUDIO

At one of the parties Renate takes me to, I notice an older man, tall and very confident in his schlubby corduroys and sharp Dior jacket.

He inserts himself into the conversation I have with Andre Heller and Erika Pluhar. He stares at me long red dress and asks me where he can buy one like that for his girlfriend.

“It’s complicated. I don’t have a studio or store right now”

“How come? How can a talented designer not have a studio?”

Renate speaks up for me. “She lives in Steinhof, that’s why. But we’re gonna change that soon, will we?” She laughs.

I blush. All eyes are on me. So there is my moment of truth.

“I ran into some legal problems, drug related and they deported me. So now, I work in Dr. Herman’s workshop and hope to get my papers from him soon.”

“That freak – excuse me, but I happen to know him – that creep makes you work for him? By the way, I’m Werner Berndorfer. You’re an interesting girl. Tell me more!” the older guy takes my arm and walks me to an empty table.

“Look, I have an eye for beauty and talent and I think I can help you” he says as we sit down. “No, don’t look at me like that, I’m not an old dude who wants to get in your pants.”

“Well, that’s a relief” I smile. “But why would you want to help me?”

“Just because. Because I want to see you get your chance to succeed, as you no doubt will. And my only selfish expectation is that I enjoy seeing artists like you get to where they should be. I’d like to be part of it. So I can say “I knew her then”.

Renate sits down next to us. “He’s for real, Monah. He’s a saint, well, almost. You can trust him”

Werner gives me his card. “I have a hair salon in the first district and underneath my salon is a huge wine-cellar that stands empty right now. I have no use for it and it needs cleaning up.”

Renate claps him on the shoulder “A hair salon. That’s the understatement of the year. He has THE hair salon, all of Vienna’s elite and wealth go there to get their hair done by him cause he’s a genius. Aren’t you, Werner?”

“I’m doing OK. I can’t complain.” He says.

I look at the card and gasp. The address is next to the St. Stephen’s Cathedral, the kind of real estate that would Rodeo Drive to shame. This is old-world money, serious wealth and prestige.

“I don’t think I’m in a place where I can afford that” I mumble and hand his card back.

“Who said anything about money? I want you to have it. For free. The building might go up for sale, but not for a few months, who knows, maybe a few years.”

“For free? Why?”

“I already told you why. I see something in you. A light in your eyes. Energy that’s bottled up and needs a place to bloom”

I’m speechless. I know the rent in this street is like 20$ per sift. It’s too good to be true. It can’t be.

“Come by tomorrow in the morning. Tell your “doctor” you have an Immigration appointment, or whatever, get creative and have a look at it. If you’ll excuse me, I have to mingle” He gets up and squeezes my shoulder “I can’t wait to hear your sewing machines down stairs. And I have a few costumers who would LOVE to get worked over by you. Vienna needs a real designer. Those rich bitches dress in tasteless designer cloths and they will lap your creativity up like starved cattle.”

“I will be there, Werner. I will” I grin and stick his card into my boot. Old habits die hard.

When I see the place, I feel like I’m dreaming. It’s an architectural gem. Pillars and rounded ceilings and so much space, bigger then the MC. Mansion my mother shared wither Millionaire husband in Calabasas. There are a few antique barber chairs and built in shelves. The beauty of this place is overwhelming.

It is filthy. Inches of dust and a moldy smell tinged with the slight aroma of old wine. Werner shows me around and totally ignores my impressed shyness.

“I have a room full of costumers upstairs, so if you’ll excuse me. Here is your key. Come and go as you wish. I’m really happy you showed up” With this, he rushes upstairs.

I find a broom and a bucket and start to clean up. Six or seven hours later, I’m still cleaning.

I call my dad. “You would not believe what just happened. Werner Berndofer is giving me this space to work in. It’s unreal. But it’s true. Can you help me move my stuff here? And by the way, I need a sewing machine and a few supplies. Please?”

My dad drops by on his way from the Palace of Justice, just a few walking minutes away and eyes Werner with a bit of suspicion. Werner is his usual slightly grumpy and harried self, but he assures my dad: “Don’t you worry, Mr. DA. I’m gay, in case you haven’t noticed. Your daughter is safe from me. When are you going to bring her stuff over?”

He looks around and is impressed about my cleaning.

“You really mean it, do you? Get to work, little design star”

My dad helps me with the heavy barber chairs and even locates a table, hidden in another nook of the cellar.

“You’re going to need good lighting here. Let me get my friend from my softball team over here ASAP. And the sewing machine? My pleasure.” He hugs me and I can feel his relieve that I’m not lost to the world of drugs – it certainly looked like that to him when he saw me that first day back in Vienna.

 





Dr. Herman’s wife

4 04 2011

DR. HERMAN’S WIFE

A women shows up with Dr. Herman on his round to inspect the samples we are producing for his upcoming fashion show. She is very pale, very thin and aggressively aloof. She not only doesn’t acknowledge us at all, but she acts like she stepped into a leper colony and is praying to get out of here without catching what we have.

She hurries to disappear into the private room with those mirrors that is off limits for all of us.

They stay there for a long time. We can hear them arguing and complaining through the thin walls. She is trying on the samples and Petra sighs and rolls her eyes listening to the whiny complaints coming from there.

He berates her.

“Honey, this would look fabulous, but you seriously have to drop some weight. What is it with you? I know that you can do better.”

We all hold our breath and are very quiet.

Veronica is close to tears. She whispers.

“She just had a baby two weeks ago. What does he expect? She’s so skinny already. What else does he want?”

I know I shouldn’t, but I can’t help myself and pipe up: “He’s such a fat pig himself. I can’t believe he’d dare to talk to her like this”

“She was his patient two years ago, a ballet dancer strung out on coke. After three kids, this is just unbelievable.” Petra adds.

“You mean she was his patient, here?” I ask.

“That’s right. And now he’s trying to make her into a strung out model. Disgusting, if you ask me”, Veronica sighs. Obviously, this isn’t the first time she’s heard this.

“You mean, she was his patient and now they are married? Isn’t that illegal?” I gasp.

“Not in Austria.” Petra explains.

No, not in Austria. My father, the powerful judge, married his 16-year-old girlfriend when I was seven. I remember her grandmother showing up at our house before the wedding. It was quite traumatic. She screamed at my dad and my mother in her broken Czechoslovakian accent: “Girl is only 16 years old. You dirty old man, stay away from girl”, she waggled her finger at my horrified mother, who just shrugged her beaten down shoulders. My father laughed in the grandmother’s prune face and pushed her out the door.

“Yeah. And so what? What are you gonna do about it, old hag?”

They got married a few weeks later, her belly swollen from the boy he planted inside her. I was the only one, refusing to stand in line to congratulate the happy couple, even though my little sister pushed me and shoved me into the line. I stood there; silently brooding and everybody laughed at the jealous little girl who did not want to lose her dad to this pathetic girl who needed a dad too. I needed my dad more and fuck her baby. Fuck that bitch that stole him from us. I wasn’t gonna make this easy on him, but he, in love and flushed wit lust did not notice my absence.

When they finally step out of the fitting room, the women looks even paler. She has to hold on to his arm, that’s how shaky she is.

Now, that I get a closer look at her, it hits me. Jesus, that’s the woman in the catalogue holding the baby. What the hell is he doing to her?

I know what. She is anorexic and hungry. It takes one to know one. She is me, but more successful in her way to be thin. Shame and sadness engulf me, mixed with envy. I want to be her.

She stares at our lunch, barely concealing her own envy.

“Can we get something to eat?” she asks with her eyes to the floor.

“Later, baby. You had your breakfast. You don’t need that now. You’re not hungry, you’re just nervous.” He leads her out of the studio, grabbing her arm quite forcefully.

“You had to have this damn dessert last night, remember?” he grins, “There is a price to pay for gluttony. You’ll live. I promise”

I hate him. I mean, I hate him anyway, but this puts a whole new spin on how much I detest him.

A few more months, just a few more weeks and I’ll be out of here, back in America. I’m wrong. But at this moment, I don’t know that yet.








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