High Life

In ‘Vogue’

April 01, 2017

Multiple Pages
In ‘Vogue’

My last week in the Alps, with the snow gone, replaced by brilliant sunshine, and the silence broken by the occasional clear, sharp wind. The town is now empty and clean, and the air bracing. I love the village out of season, the shoppers finally gone, the locals preparing to free the cows to get out and up the mountains. Training at altitude will make it easier to go hard once I’m back in the city, at least for a week or two. There is nothing like a three-month Alpine break for the old ticker.

Dinner parties out of season are very gay affairs between old friends. Vivien Duffield gave one last week that could have been written by a Hollywood scriptwriter. An Italian nobleman of impeccable breeding forgot himself and took all the asparagus, leaving the rest of us staring at our empty plates. After some subtle coughing, we all began to laugh, and he turned red. The Langoa-Barton 1982 helped. We killed five bottles of it. Afterward I went into a nearby village where the locals hang out. As the song says, “It’s just the usual thing, that attacks one in the spring, when the breezes gently moan, and there is no chaperone.” Mind you, in my case, it’s more “Where is the life that late I led? Where is it now? Totally dead.”

“I am heading for the Big Bagel, because looking at cows takes its toll after a while.”

I watched Federer on television win big at Indian Wells, moving as he has never moved before, even as a young man. The reason he’s beating everyone is an improved backhand. He now takes it earlier and more flat, he almost half-volleys the ones he doesn’t slice, and when you take it early you can go up to the net and finish the point. This is easy to say, but one needs great conditioning to do it. My only worry is that he’s peaked too soon. Winning in March is not the same as winning in July and August, when the big ones come around.

Everyone loves Roger because he acts like the old-timers used to, and by that I don’t mean John McEnroe, a great commentator on TV, incidentally. The Swiss had a few lean years that coincided with the American Vogue editor, Anna Wintour, unfailingly in his box. There was no monkey business, but fashion bullshit makes an athlete take his eye off the ball, no pun intended. Having a Vogue editor in one’s box must be like wearing swimming trunks into battle—incongruous. He’s now surrounded by his parents, wife, and twins, and hitting less topspin and winning big.

And speaking of Vogue, I read a hilarious article in National Review about Teen Vogue’s contribution against the Hitler of our age: how to rise, resist, and raise your voice against The Donald. This in Teen Vogue: “To tell a teenager that she should stick to lip gloss is frankly irresponsible.” Instead, Teen Vogue reports why “This 8-year-old Transgender Boy Thinks Trump’s Transgender Action is Ridiculous.” Nurse, help! If you thought slapstick comedy was dead, buy the extremely expensive Teen Vogue and laugh yourself silly.

The magazine is also concerned with birth-control access, something as familiar to Hollywood airhead teens as a blowjob. Teen Vogue is correct. Whitening teeth, using the right lip gloss, and a social calendar dominated by charity fund-raisers in between African basket-weaving classes are redundant pursuits. The little monsters should be aware that the dictator is about to turn them into the downtrodden they have for so long ignored while getting in and out of their chauffeur-driven Range Rovers. Bravo, Teen Vogue. Next they will be distributing it to black high schools in the Bronx for target practice.

Personally, I have nothing against fashion editors except for their arrogance. Arrogance befits a field marshal like von Runstedt, or a general like George Patton, but a fashion moll? Call the ambulance. And while we’re on the subject of phonies and hypocrites, there was an art convention in Qatar where the nerdy, jerky publisher of The New York Times spoke about his fears that his country is losing its civil liberties. Sulzberger, I imagine, is the type who does yoga with his wife but would most likely pass if someone goosed her in a crowded room. But I love the idea of mentioning freedom in Qatar, where there are Nepalese and Indian workers who have not been paid in months and have no rights of appeal. The Qataris picked up the bill for the American con men posing as art lovers, hence the speeches about freedom and the brotherhood of man. What surprises me is that the ruling Qatari gang has now spread its poisoning tentacles in the New World, starting with The New York Times. “They are easier to bribe than the English aristocracy” was the way a Qatari gang member put it. (Actually, I just made up the quote, but it’s as close to the truth as any made-up quote can be.)

Otherwise, everything’s hunky-dory. I am heading for the Big Bagel, because looking at cows takes its toll after a while. It’s springtime for Trump and America, and I plan to write a play with that title. All prospective investors are welcome—you are all bound to be enriched beyond your wildest dreams of avarice. It’s springtime for The Donald and the USA. Hooray!

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