Audrey Tatou, Coco Chanel and Me

In the extras of a DVD I rented called ‘Coco before Chanel,’ Audrey Tatou is shown at one of the red carpet premieres being interviewed. They don’t show the question asked of her, but her reply is ‘It’s important to create your life and not be passive, not wait for something to happen.’ That is as succinct as it gets, isn’t it?

If only I knew how to get past the fear. Sometimes I get this rush of courage and I tell myself to just do it, to just try. To quit my job and try to work somewhere more interesting part-time to stay afloat, until i figure out what else I want to do. Who cares if I fail? At least I would have gone out and tried. But I remain here in the same place. One of the poets I saw read recently at a Bust magazine event has founded her own nonprofit organization for poets, and she’s only 26 years old. What have I done?

Sometimes I’m at work and I think: this is all that I’ll be known for after I’m gone, and it’s a bad feeling. I want to do and be more and help people. I don’t want to settle anymore. It’s not fulfilling and it’s drudgery. Not fun at all.

‘Coco before Chanel’ was a really great movie. It goes into Chanel’s early life as an orphan, and how she gradually was drawn into her vocation of fashion design. She was an artist at a time when women weren’t expected to work. She was a feminist and an individual, a woman who refused marriage, who preferred to be a mistress than a wife.

She mentions that her mother was an idiot because she married for love, and cried and suffered her whole life because of it. She waited and waited while her husband went out and had affairs and one day he came home and found her dead. Dead of a broken heart I would guess.

With all the media surrounding famous unfaithful men, it’s really hard to have any desire to get married. The last thing I would want is for familiarity to extinguish the spark of passion. I guess I have trust issues and worry about the wandering eye. It doesn’t seem normal for humans to be expected to remain monogamous.

It doesn’t seem to work out well for us here in the modern world. Maybe I’m cynical. But considering the current divorce rates, can you really blame me? It’s a scary proposition, but maybe not for some people (if they know they have found the right person). Maybe it is better to be a mistress than a wife, at least then when the man leaves, your whole life doesn’t fall apart as well, and you eliminate the whole betrayal and get to retain some dignity.

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December 28, 2012. Tags: , , . movies, writing.

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