Wednesday, August 31, 2011

12 Things

A good friend of mine named Kip recently sent me a link to an article that he thought I would find fascinating. It was an interview with Gwyneth Paltrow that appeared in Elle Décor magazine where she listed twelve things that she “couldn’t live without.” Obviously intrigued, both by the subject matter and the fact that there is an Elle Décor magazine, I read the accompanying list that Mrs. Paltrow compiled. Here are the highlights:

Juxtaposed: Religion Shelf – The idea here is that there are custom-made slots of varying depth to ensure that the tops of your holy texts are at the same level thus making a theologically-profound decorating statement. The shelf comes with all the important religious books covering Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, Christianity, Confucianism, and Taoism (suck on that L. Ron Hubbard) and costs $2,500. 

DeGournay hand painted wallpaper – Each panel of wallpaper is unique because it is hand-painted…in London….by the English. It reportedly costs around $12,000 to wallpaper an average-sized room (or approximately the cost to build an average-sized room). Paltrow indulged herself by having it installed in her living room.

Antonio Lupi Baia Tub – This plumbing masterpiece will set you back around $10,000 and apparently helps Gwyneth unwind after a long day of sub-par filmmaking. Like the wall-covering and the holy 2x4, this item is handcrafted and hard to acquire. She told the magazine that she had hers installed in the bedroom to make it “more easily accessible.” This prevents her from wasting valuable time traversing her unnecessarily-large master suite.

YUBZ Retro Handset – This handy device plugs into any smartphone and allows you to bypass all that nasty radiation by going “old-school.” It was a rarity in Paltrow’s list as it is not handmade and costs around $50. As a bonus, the red color and retro design makes it appear that you are having a phone conversation with Commissioner Gordon. One reviewer on Amazon suggested placing your cellphone in your pocket so that you only have to hold the handset. Now, I usually mind my own business when it comes to other people, but I can assure you that if someone moseys up next to me at a store while talking on a 1960’s phone receiver that appears to be directly-wired to their pants, I will be calling that one in.

After reading through the list, I still could not believe that there is a magazine called Elle Décor. Were there that many Elle subscribers demanding monthly in-depth coverage of celebrity furniture? If I wanted glossy photos of home furnishings I can’t afford regularly delivered to my mailbox, I would sign back up for the Pottery Barn catalogue.

Also, calling her list “things I cannot live without” was a bit much. I realize that the celebrity lifestyle is often one of skewed perspective, but I doubt that anything gracing the pages of Elle Décor would help you survive the apocalypse.  

How does one even find out that such items exist? Once you reach a certain earning threshold do you just suddenly realize that it is possible to acquire nail polish made from the tears of British children or does someone have to tell you? Is there a mandatory “ostentatious décor” orientation session that comes with your first full-time publicist? Just once I want a celebrity to admit that they bought hand woven Serbian carpet because the line was too long at Home Depot.

In the spirit of Elle Decor, I have created my own list of twelve essential items that will make Gwyneth Paltrow look like she has been couponing at Dollar General:
  1. Dead Sea scrolls toilet tissue
  2. Manatee-Flesh beer cozies
  3. Throw pillows stuffed with human eye-lashes
  4. Hand-painted sanskrit television remote
  5. Dolphin marrow curtain rods
  6. Dryer sheets made from actual endangered flowers
  7. Alpaca oven mitts
  8. Saffron-powered Honda accord
  9. Elephant tusk disposable razor
  10. Eskimo harvested glacier ice cubes
  11. A papasan chair made from the skeletal remains of dinosaurs 
  12. Kitten-whisker area rugs


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