‘ All my friends had some nightmare experience trying to get pregnant. My story took the cake’11 days ago
At five months pregnant, Ariel Levy lost her newborn. After four more years of IVF, had she left motherhood too late?
I first fulfilled Ariel Levy in 2009, soon after moving from London to New York, but I had been a fan for more than a decade. Her frank articles about pop culture and sex, which she wrote in her first task at New York magazine from the late 1990 s, the template of what I wanted to write one day. Her 2005 book, Female Chauvinist Pigs, a blister look at how young woman were being sold the lie that emulating pole dancers and Paris Hilton was empowering, became one of the defining feminist statements of that decade. At the New Yorker, where she has been a personnel writer since 2008, she breaks up the publications occasional aridity with vivid articles about sexuality and gender.( She got her job when she told editor David Remnick that, If foreigners had only the New Yorker to go by, they would conclude that human beings didnt care that much about sexuality, which they actually do .)
Heroes rarely live up to your fictions, but Levy outstripped them. Usually marriage used to go for drinkings cocktails that knocked me sideways, but scarcely seemed to touch her sides and from the start she struck me as being just like her penning: laid-back, wise, curious, kind. Sometimes Levys wife, Lucy, would join us. Isnt she hilarious? Levy would say after Lucy had said something that wasnt, actually, all that funny, but I jealousy them their mutual love after almost a decade together. I, by contrast, was lonely and, like generations of single women in their mid-3 0s before me, starting to panic. But like a lot of women of my particular generation, I felt ashamed of this. Panicking about not having a newborn? How retrograde. So I never admitted any of it to Levy, who seemed more likely to eat her own hair than indulge in such uncool, unfeminist thoughts.
I left New York in 2012 and, despite my doomy fears, had twins when I was 37. Levy and I stayed in touch by email, and although her messages became shorter and more distant, I presumed everything was fine, because she was Ari. But in 2013, I opened the New Yorker and learned that it was not.
When we meet for brunch on a cold Saturday in February, it has been five years since we last comprehend each other. Its a typical New York scene: weary and winter-pale mothers eating scrambled eggs in a trendy restaurant while their sugar-rushed toddlers play on iPads. Levy, by contrast, looks calm, happy and healthy, and not only because she has a tan from a recent five-week stay in South Africa.
If we had this conversation five months ago, I would have been in a bad way, she says, in a lilting voice that are typically sets an unspoken Oh my God! and Can you believe it? behind her terms. But Im so much less miserable Im not even miserable at all. So what the frack are we going to eat?
We are just around the corner from Levys flat, where she has expended the past year writing a memoir. This in itself is something of a surprise, because she is not usually a first-person novelist. But Levy, after negotiating her order with the waiter( Ooh, the cheddar scramble is that good? But do we have to have the creme fraiche with it? I mean, lets not ), shrugs off any concerns about self-exposure: Im pretty open book-y, you know? I never understood what the big deal is about privacy. The hardest part was realising that Id better entail what I say. The whole schtick of the book is acceptance and surrender. So after I finished writing it, I believed, Wow, I guess Id better follow my own advice now.
In 2012, Levy conceived a newborn with sperm from a friend, having overcome the reservations shed long had about parenthood. She was about to turn 38: It felt like attaining it on to a plane the moment before the gate shuts you cant help but thrill, she wrote in her 2013 New Yorker article, Thanksgiving In Mongolia.
When she was five months pregnant, she flew to Ulaanbaatar for run. Her friends were concerned but, she wrote, I liked the idea of being the kind of woman whod go to the Gobi desert pregnant. After two days of abdominal discomfort, she ran into the hotel bathroom, squatted on the floor and blacked out from the ache. When she came to, her newborn was on the floor next to her. I heard myself say out loud, This cant is all very well. But it looked good. My newborn was as fairly as a seashell, she wrote. She gazed in awe at his mouth, opening and closing, opening and closing, swallowing the new world.
She had suffered a severe placental abruption, a rare complication in which the placenta detaches from the uterus. In shock, Levy held the 19 -week foetus while blood spread across the tiles. She eventually called for help, taking a photograph of her son before the ambulance turned up. She was taken to a clinic where a kind South African doctor tended to her while she hemorrhaged and sobbed. And I knew, as surely as I now knew that I wanted small children, that this change in fortune was my fault. I had boarded a plane out of vanity and selfishness, and the dark Mongolian sky had punished me, she wrote.
Levy flew back to New York and, within two weeks, her relationship with Lucy came to an objective. For months afterwards, Levy continued to bleed and lactate: It seemed to me sorrow was leaking out of me through every orifice. She appeared obsessively at the photograph of her newborn, and tried to make others appear, too, so they could see what “shes seen” and they did not: that she was a mother who had lost her child.
Her article, which won a National Magazine Award in 2014, aims at that point, and I assumed that the end of Lucy and Levys marriage was tied to the loss of their child. In fact, that was a whole other shitshow, Levy tells now. When she returned from Mongolia, she realised through her cloud of grief that Lucy, who had struggled with alcoholism before, needed to go to rehab, poorly. The girls, still in love but too broken to support one another, separated. Today, they are in touch, but, Levy tells, There are times when one of us says, I gotta stop talking to you for a while because this is too painful. Because we are get divorced, you dont magically stop caring about each other.
The breakup is one of merely several shitshows recounted in Levys memoir, The Rules Do Not Apply, which looks, in self-lacerating detail, at events in her life before she went to Mongolia, and hints at some that came as. It is not the book that many expected would follow Female Chauvinist Pigs , not least because it could be spun as a warning to women about the perils of waiting too long to have a newborn. Placental abruption, Levy writes, usually befalls women who are heavy cocaine users or who have high blood pressure. But sometimes it only happens because youre old. She doesnt go into this in the book, but Levy, who is now 42, has not been able to conceive again, despite having undergone a ridiculous amount of IVF over the past four years.
The alternative way of looking at Levys memoir is that she is dealing with a subject that feminism has never been able to resolve: the immovable boulder of fertility, butting up against female progress. Levy says she had always wanted to be a writer, so I construct my life with that as my priority; by the time she realised she also wanted to be a mom, she was in her late 30 s. She writes that she and her generation were given the lavish gift of agency by feminism, coupled with a middle-class, western sense of entitlement that resulted them to believe that anything seemed possible if you had ingenuity, money and persistence. But the body doesnt play by those rules.
Of course, this is partly about class, she says now. I dont hear women who are less privileged supposing theyre entitled to everything, whenever they want it. Thats a privilege phenomenon, but it is a phenomenon. It constructs me laugh when people say, Why dont you simply do surrogacy, or merely adopt? Believe me, there is no just about them. Surrogacy expenses $100,000 – $150,000 in the US, while adoption expenses are on average between $ 20,000 and $45,000( costs in the UK are much lower ). After the money Levy spent on IVF( A plenty. A plenty, a lot, a lot ), those options are less possible than ever.
Doomy warnings that women need to stop shillyshallying and sprog up are published in the Daily Mail every day. They are far less common from prominent feminist novelists, and Levy concurs there is no point in lecturing young lady, because it doesnt do anything, and they know it already. Theyre like, Eff you: Im busy trying to earn money and figure myself out. Its just a design flaw that, at the exact moment so many of us ultimately feel mature enough to take care of someone beside ourselves, the bodys like: Im out.
Read more: www.theguardian.com
Woke models: how activism became fashion’s latest must-have1 month, 1 day ago
Its no longer enough to have a look. Adwoa Aboah and Leomie Andersons socially aware voices have induced them the stars of the new catwalk generation
You can tell a great deal about an epoch by its fashion models. In the 60 s, the spirit of the youthquake was personified by the wide-eyed, Bambi-limbed Twiggy. In the early 90 s , nothing said sod the recession like a glamazon who wouldnt get out of bed for less than $10,000. In the ensuing two decades, Kate Moss represented not just a waifish appearance but a sphinx-like position, espousing the motto: Never complain, never explain.
But in the social media era, something new is happening. In persons under the age of protest and fourth-wave feminism, it is no longer enough for models to slink down a catwalk anonymously: stillnes is starting to look severely dclass. The hot thing in modelling is not a look, but a viewpoint. It is having a voice and not being afraid to use it. It is TED talks and open letters. It is Instagramming images from protest marches and hosting debates about intersectionality. It is campaigning for charities and founding NGOs. It is outspoken. It is woke.
Socially conscious models are popping up everywhere. On the current coverings of i-D and Love magazines is Adwoa Aboah, a woman whose relatively small stature( 5ft 8in) has done nothing to thwart her towering success. As well as appearing on catwalks and campaigns for Dior and Versus Versace, Aboah operates an initiative called Gurlstalk; her Instagram page intersperses backstage way present photograph with moving posts on her struggle with depression.
Many of Aboahs contemporaries equally refuse to conform to the archetype of the taciturn model. In both Love and i-D, Aboah seems with Slick Woods, a spliff-smoking 20 -year-old based in New York who said in a recent interview: Im definitely an out-of-pocket pick for a model. I say what I want and do what I want.
Read more: www.theguardian.com
The best food they eat in 20151 month, 12 days ago
Kebabs in Istanbul, sea urchins in County Cork, a sensational lobster pasta in London: top cooks and food writers share their favourite meals this year
A ++ iya Sofrasi and KadikAPy market, Istanbul
RenA( c) Redzepi
Chef-patron, Noma, Copenhagen
Walking through KadikAPy market in Istanbul you see dried aubergines hanging from stalls, dried chilli peppers and fresh dA1/ 4rA1/ 4m, and Turkish tea being poured all throughout. You hear street merchants calling out their catch of the day, maybe a pouch of sardines, turbot from the Black Sea or a kilo of mussels. I was there en route to A ++ iya, in the heart of this picturesque marketplace. A ++ iya to me embodies the perfect restaurant: full of tradition but not afraid of innovating, with a generous and welcoming space. The snack is a cornucopia of all there is to offer from Anatolia lamb stewed with dried cherries, chopped parsley with vinegar, rice cooked with raisins and fistfuls of whole spices … I would blithely set myself on a plane just to go and have lunch there on a beautiful springtime day.
Pickled herring platter at Russ& Daughters, New York
Chef and food novelist
It was a platter of pickled herring fillets with three sauce alternatives on the side cream, mustard and curry along with schmaltz herring fillets and then matjes herring fillets. In the centre were pickled onions, roll mops and a beet and herring salad. I had it for breakfast, around 11 am, and it left a sweet( albeit fishy) taste in my mouth for the coming few days.
I love the cafe, which opened last year and is strongly modelled on the long-established store. Sardines, chubs, rugelach, pickles, boxes of matzo, halva sold by the block, rye bread to blow your socks off, Bloody Marys: these are the flavors which define New York for me.
IdiazA! bal cheese, Urbia mountains, Spain
Chef-patron, Arzak, San SebastiA! n
This spring I made an idiazA! bal cheese with a shepherd in the Urbia mountains in the Basque country. We used natural rennet which the shepherd made from the stomach of a latxa lamb. When I went to pick my cheese up this autumn( after the ageing process) it had all the rich true flavor of the milk, but you could also sense the environment in which the mother had grazed. I could close my eyes and imagine myself on that windswept mountain top. The fact I constructed it heightened the flavor. I ate it with their own families, either by itself or with walnuts, quince jelly and apple jelly.
Dashi-simmered asparagus, tofu and egg at Koya, London
Sarit Packer and Itamar Srulovich
Chef-owners, Honey& Co, London
We went to Koya a couple of days before it shut and had an amazing goodbye snack. The asparagus and tofu dish was so delicious, we ordered another for dessert. It had those really fat English asparagus, blanched and chargrilled, with tofu, bonito flakes and a dashi broth. It was so nicely balanced and full of flavor. The next day, Itamar went back with our head cook to eat it all over again. The food in those last days of Koya felt very organic, more like dishes Junya[ Yamasaki, the head cook] would make at home than normal restaurant stuff.
Sea urchins from County Cork
Chef-patron, Bocca di Lupo, London
From now until February or March, you can get amazing ocean urchins from Ireland. I had my first one last week and it was mindbogglingly good. You can get warm-water ocean urchins, which tend to be bigger and more impressive-looking, all year round, but they are much less intensely flavoured. The Irish ones mine received from John Chamberlain in Dunmanus Bay, Co Cork have an enveloping fishy flavour. Theyre wonderful stirred through pasta or with sushi, but I prefer them on their own with just a tiny squeeze of lemon. You slice them open, clean out the gunky stuff, rinse them in sea water and scoop out the eggs with a teaspoon. It makes you realise how amazing nature is, and how little we should mess with our food.
Sea-salt ice cream in Dingle, County Kerry
James Jocky Petrie
Group executive growth cook, Gordon Ramsay Group
In Dingle this summer, during a chowder rivalry with lots of Guinness and live music, I tried a sea-salt ice cream at Murphys. It was one of those things that attains you go, damn, why didnt I think of that? Everyone loves salted caramel, but this is different: just plain ice cream with ocean salt. It voices odd but it truly works: the sweetness of the sugar balances the salty character. Its almost savoury but not quite its only a sweet salt. People come from miles around to eat this ice cream.
Lamb kAPfte at Sultanahmet KAPftecisi, Istanbul
Chef-patron, Gymkhana, Trishna, London
I went to Istanbul for the first time this year and ate at a place called Sultanahmet KAPftecisi. After visiting the Blue Mosque nearby, we find the big queue outside and decided to find out what was going on. They specialise in lamb kAPftes grilled very simply over charcoal and served with bread, pickled chillies and their house chilli paste. We ordered one and ended up having six. Its tough to find something so succulent and juicy and flavourful. I think its down to the quality and fat content of the meat, and that they serve them hot off the grill, so you can still savour the charcoal. Theyve mastered the recipe over years and years. Its the ultimate kebab.
I have cancer. Don’t tell me you’re sorry | Elizabeth Wurtzel1 month, 13 days ago
Everyone else can dislike cancer. I dont. Everyone else can be afraid of cancer. I am not, writes Elizabeth Wurtzel
Our daughter succumbed. Now she lives in the pages of a romantic fiction1 month, 18 days ago
In 2003, Alice Martineau was on the brink of a successful pops career when she died, aged 30, of cystic fibrosis. Now their own families have given permission for her inspiring life story to be fictionalised
In November 2014, an email pinged into Luke Martineaus inbox from Alice Peterson, person he had never heard of. Peterson explained that she was a novelist and had been inspired by the life of Lukes sister, also called Alice, who had died in 2003. She wanted to construct Alice the subject of her next novel, to recreate her in fictional kind although, obviously, she couldnt touch this without the bles of Alices family. Would they be prepared to meet?
Naturally, the Martineaus were a little wary. I wasnt sure. I couldnt imagine it, admits Liz, Luke and Alices mother. My first thought was: Would I like it?
Luke says: I did need to know who this Alice Peterson was and what her volumes were like, but chiefly I guessed: Wouldnt that be wonderful?
Alice Martineau was bear in 1972 with cystic fibrosis her parents, Liz and David, were told that her life expectancy was about 10 years.
Cystic fibrosis causes a build up of thick, sticky mucus in the lungs, digestive system and other organs, and have contributed to lung infections and reduced lung function as well as a long list of other debilitating conditions. Its inherited if both parents carry the gene, as Liz and David did, their children have a 25% opportunity of having the condition.( Luke, born two years earlier, does not have it .) Although Alice enjoyed a happy and relatively normal childhood in west London albeit with vast quantities of drug, a special diet and daily physiotherapy by her late teens and early 20 s, her illness was escalating, encroaching, fighting for space.
Despite her regime of nebulisers, intravenous antibiotics and physio, as well as regular remains at the Brompton hospital, Alice powered on, refusing to give her condition a minute more than she had to. She was unable to live independently, but her parents converted the cellar into a separate flat. She examined English literature at Kings College London, graduated with a first, then pursued a singer-songwriter career, finally landing a record deal with Sony in 2002. By then, she was on the waiting list for a triple transplant heart, lungs and liver. Alice succumbed the following year, aged 30, shortly after the release of her album Daydreams.
Back then, Peterson, only two years younger than Alice Martineau, had followed her narrative, bought her album and been saddened by her death. Fast-forward 11 years, and she was an established novelist searching for a topic when the name Alice Martineau had abruptly re-entered her head.
Read more: www.theguardian.com
Is sugar the world’s most popular narcotic? | Gary Taubes1 month, 26 days ago
The Long Read: It eases ache, seems to be addictive and demonstrates every sign of causing long-term health problems. Is it time to quit sugar for good?
Imagine a drug that can intoxicate us, can infuse us with energy and can be taken by mouth. It doesnt have to be injected, smoked, or snorted for us to experience its sublime and soothing effects. Imagine that it mixes well with virtually every food and particularly liquids, and that when given to newborns it elicits a feeling of pleasure so profound and intense that its pursuit becomes a driving force throughout their lives.
Could the savour of sugar on the tongue be a kind of poisoning? What about the possibility that sugar itself is an intoxicant, a drug? Overconsumption of this drug may have long-term side-effects, but there are none in the short term no staggering or dizziness , no slurring of speech , no passing out or drifting away , no heart palpitations or respiratory distress. When it is given to children, its effects may be only most extreme fluctuations on the apparently natural emotional rollercoaster of childhood, from the initial intoxication to the tantrums and whining of what may or may not be withdrawal a few hours later. More than anything, it constructs infants happy, at least for the period during which theyre eating it. It soothed their distress, eases their pain, focuses their attention and leaves them excited and full of elation until the dose wears off. The only downside is that children will come to expect another dosage, perhaps to demand it, on a regular basis.
How long would it be before parents took to using our imaginary drug to pacify their children when necessary, to alleviate inconvenience, to prevent outbursts of unhappiness or to distract attention? And once the narcotic became identified with pleasure, how long before it was used to celebrate birthdays, a football game, good grades at school? How long before no collect of family and friends was complete without it, before major vacations and celebrations were defined in part by the use of this medication to assure pleasure? How long would it be before the underprivileged of the world would happily spend what little money they had on this drug rather than on nutritious dinners for their families?
There is something about the experience of consuming sugar and sweets, particularly during childhood, that readily invokes the comparison to a drug. I have infants, still relatively young, and I believe creating them would be a far easier chore if sugar and sweets were not an option, if managing their sugar intake did not seem to be a constant topic in our parental responsibilities. Even those who vigorously defend the place of sugar and sweets in modern diets an innocent moment of pleasure, a salve amid the stress of life, as the journalist Tim Richardson has written acknowledge that this does not include permitting children to eat as many sweets as they want, at any time, and that most mothers will want to ration their childrens sweets.
But why is this rationing necessary? Children crave many things Pokmon cards, Star Wars paraphernalia, Dora the Explorer knapsacks and many foods savor good to them. What is it about sweets that makes them so uniquely in need of rationing?
This is of more than academic interest, because the response of entire populations to sugar has been effectively identical to that of children: once people are exposed, they eat as much sugar as they can easily procure. The primary roadblock to more consumption up to the phase where populations become obese and diabetic has tended to be availability and cost. As the price of a pound of sugar has fallen over the centuries, the amount of sugar consumed has steadily, inexorably climbed.
In 1934, while sales of sweets continued to increase during the course of its Great Depression, the New York Times commented: The Depression[ has] proved that people wanted candy, and that as long as they had any fund at all, they would buy it. During those brief periods of day during which sugar production outdid our ability to devour it, the sugar industry and purveyors of sugar-rich products have worked diligently to increase demand and, at least until recently, have succeeded.
The critical question, as the journalist and historian Charles C Mann has elegantly put it, is whether[ sugar] is actually an addictive substance, or if people simply act like it is. This topic is not easy to answer. Surely, people and populations have acted as though sugar is addictive, but science offer no definitive evidence. Until lately, nutritionists analyse sugar did so from the natural perspective of viewing it as a nutrient a carbohydrate and nothing more. They occasionally argued about whether or not it might play a role in diabetes or heart disease, but not about whether it triggered a reaction in the brain or body that induced us wishes to consume it in excess. That was not their area of interest.
The few neurologists and psychologists interested in probing the sweet-tooth phenomenon, or why we might need to ration our sugar consumption so as not to eat too much of it, did so typically from the perspective of how these sugars compared with other medications of abuse, in which existing mechanisms of craving is now relatively well understood. Lately, this comparing has received more attention as the public-health community has looked to ration our sugar intake as its own population, and has thus considered the issue that one style to regulate these sugars as with cigarettes is to establish that they are, indeed, addictive. These sugars are very probably unique in that they are both a nutrient and a psychoactive substance with some addictive characteristics.
Historians have often considers the sugar-as-a-drug metaphor to be an apt one. That sugars, particularly highly refined sucrose, render peculiar physiological impacts is well known, wrote Sidney Mintz, whose 1985 book Sweetness and Power is one of two seminal English-language histories of sugar. But these effects are neither as visible nor as long-lasting as those of alcohol or caffeinated beverages, the first use of who are capable of trigger rapid changes in respiration, heartbeat, skin colour and so on.
Mintz has argued that a primary reason sugar has escaped social disapproval is that, whatever conspicuous behavioural changes may occur when infants eat sugar, it did not cause the kind of flushing, staggering, dizziness, euphoria, changes in the pitch of the voice, slurring of speech, visibly intensified physical activity or any of the other cues associated with the ingestion of other medications. Sugar appears to cause pleasure with a price that is difficult to discern immediately and paid in full only years or decades later. With no visible, immediately noticeable consequences, as Mintz says, questions of long-term nutritive or medical consequences went unasked and unanswered. Most of us today will never know if we suffer even subtle withdrawal symptoms from sugar, because well never run long enough without it to find out.
Sugar historians consider the narcotic comparing to be fitting in part because sugar is one of a handful of medication foods, to use Mintzs term, that came out of the tropics, and on which European empires were built from the 16 th century onward the others being tea, coffee, chocolate, rum and tobacco.
Its history is intimately linked to that of these other narcotics. Rum is distilled, of course, from sugar cane. In the 17 th century, once sugar was added as a sweetener to tea, coffee and chocolate, and costs allowed it, the intake of these substances in Europe explosion. Sugar was used to sweeten spirits and wine in Europe as early as the 14 th century; even cannabis preparations in India and opium-based wines and syrups contained sugar.
As for tobacco, sugar was, and still is, a critical ingredient in the American blended-tobacco cigarette, the first of which was Camel. Its this marriage of tobacco and sugar, as a sugar-industry report described it in 1950, that builds for the mild experience of smoking cigarettes as compared with cigars and, perhaps more important, makes it possible for most of us to inhale cigarette smoke and draw it deep into our lungs.
Unlike alcohol, which was the only commonly available psychoactive substance in the old world until they arrived, sugar, nicotine and caffeine had at least some stimulating properties, and so offered a very different experience, one that was more conducive to the labour of everyday life. These were the 18 th-century equivalent of uppers, writes the Scottish historian Niall Ferguson. The empire, it might be said, building on a huge sugar, caffeine and nicotine hurry a rush nearly everyone could experience.
Sugar, more than anything, seems to have attained life worth living( as it still does) for so many, particularly those whose lives lacked the kind of pleasures that relative wealth and daily hours of leisure might otherwise offer. Sugar was an ideal substance, says Mintz. It served to make a busy life seem less so; it eased, or seemed to ease, the changes back and forth from work to rest; it provided swifter sensations of fullness or satisfaction than complex carbohydrates did; it combined with many other foods No wonder the rich and powerful liked it so much, and no wonder the poor learned to love it.
What Oscar Wilde wrote about a cigarette in 1891 might also be said about sugar: It is the perfect pleasure. It is exquisite, and it leaves one unsatisfied. What more can one want?
Children surely respond to sugar instantaneously. Give newborns a option of sugar water or plain, wrote the British physician Frederick Slare 300 years ago, and they will greedily suck down the one, and make Faces at the other: Nor will they be pleasd with Cows Milk, unless that be blessd with a little Sugar, to bring it up to the Sweetness of Breast-Milk.
Katy Perry’s Christian mothers find her cherry pie hard to swallow2 months, 29 days ago
The innuendo-laden lyrics of the singers recent make, Bon Apptit, have left her devout mum and dad impression queasy
Katy Perry has revealed that she and her devout Christian parents have to agree to disagree over the lyrics to some of her sungs, including her innuendo-riddled recent reach Bon Apptit. In the video, Perry is served up as a dinner, with all the delicacy of a People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals ad from the 1990 s, until she rises up against her male oppressors and takes retaliation by pole-dancing in front of them.
The song uses a series of culinary metaphors to describe what is on Perrys menu. She claims to be a five-star Michelin who is spread like a buffet. Presumably she is not talking about the kind of buffet Lost in Showbiz grew up with in the north more prawn cocktail vol-au-vents and pineapple and cheese on cocktail sticks than the part of Perrys body that she calls the worlds best cherry pie. And that is to say nothing of the practicalities of serving a whole tart at a buffet, when every caterer knows that individual mini-pies are preferable. She taunted the release of the way in April by tweeting a recipe for the worlds best cherry pie and asking fans to cook it for her. What she entailed by cherry pie wasnt wholly clear until Bon Apptit was released afterwards, which in hindsight stimulates the stunt a little less appetising.
The excitable acid-blond vocalist told the Australian radio prove Smallzys Surgery that, shockingly, her pastor parents did not inevitably approve of the internationally successful call to enjoy her cherry pie. We agree to disagree but still with loving space, she told Smallzy. We all come from different places you can have your faith system , nobody is telling you not to believe your beliefs but you can also come from a place of love.
It is not the first time Perry has discussed the clash between her line of work and her parents religious beliefs. She told Vogue that she was taken to picket Marilyn Manson and Madonna concerts when she was younger, and when she spoke at the Human Rights Campaign Gala earlier this year she described herself as a gospel-singing girl raised in youth camps that were pro-conversion camps. Having gone from picket lines to savor other dames cherry chapsticks, to offering her own cherry pie for intake, one thing is clear: if Perry ever offers you fruit, do check if its a metaphor first.
Read more: www.theguardian.com
WD-4 0 and microwaved tampons: secrets of food photography exposed3 months, 16 days ago
Its the job of a food stylist to induce products look delicious on camera even if the makeover leaves the dinner inedible. Six stylists tell us their tricks
Behind most professional food photos is a stylist who tricks the spectator. These deceits range from a touch of lipstick to redden a strawberry, to milkshakes made from mashed potatoes. Its not that food stylists are liars and defrauds. Theyre simply in the business of improvisation.
Throughout the 10 hours it takes, on average, to complete a photo shoot, stylists are expected to solve any dedicated crisis on the spot. No tzatziki on set? Make do with the mayonnaise or whipped cream in the refrigerator. A client wants that turkey skin to seem a bit more red? Better have food coloring on hand.
When shooting, you cant stop and say: Hey, ugh, I forgot this, explains Denise Stillman, an Orange County-based food stylist whos been in the business for 26 years. You only have to make sure you[ bring enough materials on set to] covering all your basis and then[ ask yourself ], What else can go wrong?
But not everything is faked. The product the advertiser is trying to sell is often featured, explains Stillman. When, for example, she shoots an ad for Breyers, she shoots the real ice cream. But if shes styling Gay Lea Foods whipped cream, the ice cream it rests atop can be made of anything so long as it seems delicious.
Whether shooting a television commercial or print advertisement, a food stylists goal is often to emphasize food ingredients natural beauty.
Im like hair and makeup for food, says Charlotte Omnes, a stylist are stationed in New York. When you watch models walk down the runway, they dont look like that. But after they come out of makeup, youre like, Wow.
If you want your Instagram food photos to resemble Bon Appetit coverings, weve collected some pro tips-off that will help. Six food stylists served us their secrets on how to attain common dishes look ready for their close-ups.
Enchiladas: mashed potatoes give the appearance of bulk
Mexican food is not the most photogenic. No one knows this better than Kim Krejca, a Phoenix-based stylist who works with a lot of south-western cuisine. Enchiladas with sauce hemorrhaging into the beans[ are] not very visually pleasant, she says. You have to modify that but still be true to the food.
To give the enchiladas the appearance of bulkiness( as considered above ), she stuffed them with instant mashed potatoes, a stylists go-to filling because they are easy to make and mold. Then Krejca added meat and veggies to the ends where the tortillas open up. To finish the dish, she used a hot handgun to build the cheese melts perfectly on top.
Tacos: cosmetic sponges keep the shells open
In real life, tacos are a delicious mess. To stimulate them presentable on camera, Krejca glued two tortillas together and placed cosmetic sponges behind the meat to keep the shells open. For dark and juicy-looking beef, she painted the pieces with a brown sauce called Kitchen Bouquet, made of water and food coloring. Krejca then sprayed the fill with WD-4 0, her secret weapon to attain Mexican food glisten. Stillman uses red pepper in place of diced tomatoes for a more vibrant coloring and pours corn syrup on beans so they look moist and fresh.
Cereal: mens hair products and sunscreen make a perfect milk
This may ruin your craving, but the milk used in cereal photos is usually fake. Since the real stuff quickly constructs cornflakes seem soggy, food stylists have come up with alternatives. In this photo, Wisconsin-based Tamara Kaufman used Wildroot, a white hair cream for men with a sunscreen lotion-like consistency that many stylists covet. Krejca favor the old-school method of white glue, which photographs just like the real deal. When pros do use actual milk, its merely a very small amount. According to Michelle Rabin, a Toronto-based food stylist, you can place the most beautiful pieces of cereal in a bowl filled with vegetable shorten and cover it with a thin layer of milk. The abbreviating defies the liquid and it looks like the whole bowl is filled with knolls of cereal, she says. The pieces will stay fairly crisp for a long time.
Coffee: watered down soy sauce and gelatin give a smooth look
Black coffee is hard to work with because of its oily sheen. In a latte or cappuccino, the foam will speedily evaporate. In this photo, Omnes used a combination of Kitchen Bouquet, water and gelatin to give the coffee a smooth seem. In a pinch, Rabin has used watered-down soy sauce and once had to improvise with cream and gravy browner on the situated of a popular Canadian brand. I see that billboard I worked on and Im like: Thats funny, because thats not a coffee, she says. Kaufman uses the real deal when possible, but adds fells of soapy water around the perimeter with an eyedropper to simulate fresh brew. The froth, stylists say, is often made from piped soap foam.
Turkey: it may be raw and bloody inside, but the skin looks good
Every home chef knows its hard to make a bird crispy on the outside and moist on the inside. Fortunately, food stylists only have to focus on aesthetics, which means they never fully cook one. It is important not to overcook them so the skin stays looking moist, plump and juicy, says Omnes. These are visual cues that build your mouth water when you look at it. New-York based stylist Brian Preston-Campbell says he often roasts five or six turkeys for a few hours each to get that perfect hero bird. Its still raw and kind of bloody inside, he says. Its kind of nasty but its about the end product in the photo.
In this shot, Omnes pinned down the turkey skin so it wouldnt tear in the oven. She lined the pan and stuffed the bird with a water-soaked paper towel so it would steam instead of turning crispy. To achieve that brown, glistening seem, she brushed the turkey with a mix of water, Kitchen Bouquet and dish soap.
Ice cream or whipped cream: abbreviate, corn syrup and frosting
If ice cream were a human model, she would be a diva. The dessert is hard to mold, and if youre not styling in a refrigerated space, melts promptly. To avoid the headache, experts often turn to other ingredients. To create the ice cream on the left, Omnes mixed frosting with icing sugar( the cone on the right is the real bargain ), but the most common fake ice cream recipe is a combination of vegetable shortening, powdered sugar and corn syrup.
For other milky desserts, stylists have many hacks. For a dollop of whipped cream, Omnes use a non-dairy creamer that does not wilt or weep. Kaufman favor Barbasol shaving cream but notes: The woman who mistakenly tried a bite was not pleased. For milkshakes, Stillman employs sour cream because its thick and easy to swirl.
Drinks: that frosty glass? Its spray-on deodorant
Stylists dont waste real liquor unless the ad is for alcohol. To induce cocktails, Omnes mixes food coloring in water, a trick Kaufman also uses to create chardonnays from diluted Kitchen Bouquet. In truth, the liquid itself is the sideshow. The most important part about cocktails are the visual cues, says Omnes cues such as ice, fizz, bubbles and froth. They[ make the drink] appear refreshing.
For frozen beverages like margaritas and daiquiris, the pros rely on ice powder, bits of gelatin that look like crushed ice when mixed with liquid. They also use fake plastic or acrylic ice cubes, which dont melt under the hot camera illuminations and vaseline on the rim of margaritas. To create frost, Stillman coats a beer mug with spray-on deodorant and uses a mixture of Scotchguard and glycerin to make soft drink look icy cold with beads of condensation. What a fus it would be otherwise, says Stillman. This style, you can choose the level of wetness on the glass.
Steamy pasta: incense gives the appearance of steam
That moment when steam rises up from pasta like mist over a mountain is hard to capture naturally on camera. Kaufman hides a tin foil package of steam chips inside the pasta bowl and adds water to make vapor. To get the same effect, she has also illuminated incense and later removed the stick with Photoshop, while other tricks involve a attire steamer or cigarette smoke. By far the most interesting method is to microwave water-soaked tampons( cotton balls work as well) and bury them behind a dish. I have them in my kit just in case, says Kaufman. Regardless of the technique, she says steam should always be shot against a dark background.
Read more: www.theguardian.com
Annette Bening:’ Women don’t have to do everything’3 months, 17 days ago
She is the ultimate 21 st century female both on and off the screen. Eve Barlow fulfils Annette Bening in LA to talk about movies, motherhood and her search for meaning
At 11 am on a Friday morning, Studio City in Los Angeles is full of mums. Mums coming out of fingernail salons, mums falling dogs off at day care, mums picking up fresh bread. Outside one deli, a local mum with cropped hair slides in through the front doorway in a camel-coloured overcoat. She moves towards a back kiosk and, complaining of a slight cold, orders chicken noodle soup. She could be any mum, but shes the mum: Annette Bening.
She seems around the 1950 s diner. I love the booths, I love the ambiance, and she smiles, pointing at portraits of stacks of salt beef and rye, I love the pictures of the sandwiches. Its a surprise, perhaps, that such Hollywood royalty can sit at a booth in an unassuming deli without anyone bothering her.
For nearly 30 years, Bening a four-time Oscar nominee, a Bafta winner for American Beauty and twice a Golden Globe recipient( for Being Julia and The Kids Are All Right ) has been bending the notions of family. At the age of 58, her latest maternal portrait in 20 th Century Women is lauded as her most electric, searching and emotionally expansive yet.
Read more: www.theguardian.com
The magic number: how many people have you slept with?3 months, 20 days ago
From a 40 -year-old virgin to a role-play devotee, real people disclose everything theyve learned between the sheets. Cautioning: adult content
You didnt go all the way unless you were stupid, because it would ruin your life
Jane, 81, three partners
My grandmother was a Victorian and wouldnt mention the lavatory. For her, sexuality would have been something a woman suffered rather than enjoyed.
Coming to London in 1955 was a revelation. My friend and I shared a flat with three chaps. This was unheard of at the time, but by gosh we had fun. There was a bath in the kitchen and, if you didnt want to miss the party, people could hand you a drink through the curtain.
But Id never go all the way. You couldnt enjoy sexuality to that extent, because youd be afraid of losing control. We had no contraception. You didnt go further unless you were stupid, because it would ruin your life. Even when you were married, you were holding back, in case you got pregnant again. That destroyed a lot of the pleasure for women. The greatest liberation was the contraceptive pill. That changed everyones attitude to sex.
I marriage at 24 and had two children, but I used to wish I could have sex just for the sake of it. Im divorced now and, a couple of years back, a male acquaintance asked, Are you still active? And I supposed, whats he on about? My arms and legs still run. I can walk about. Then I realised it was a euphemism for sexually active. When I told my grandson, he burst out chuckling. Hed have to be fairly damned gorgeous, but I dont guess I could now. A man of my age would expect me to cook his food. I cant be bothered with that.
I went on Grindr when I was 16, and I was frightened
Paul, 20, three partners
When I was really young, I imagined myself being with a woman, because that was the norm. Growing up and used to identify I was gay changed everything.
At my age, a lot of gay men are quite sleazy. Straight men are likely the same. People sleep around, and its not my scene, so finding a long-term partner can be difficult. I recollect going on Grindr when I was 16, and I was terrified because older humen started sending me photos. I was like: what are you doing? Youre 40. Is that OK? That 40 -year-old humen can approach 16 -year-olds?
Its very easy for lesbian men to find sex. If I wanted to have sex tonight, I could probably find someone, but I wouldnt feel the connection. I could go on Grindr, chat person up and invite them round, but I dont like the idea of inviting a stranger into my house.
I miss people actually talking to each other, instead of being online. You ensure 90 s Tv programmes where people go up to someone in a bar and say, Hi, can I get your number? And I think, that would never, ever happen these days.
Ive not been in that situation yet, but I think sex is likely best when youre in a relationship, because youre more comfy around one another. When you dont know person, you always think, Oh God, is this OK? Am I doing this right? Especially if theyre more experienced than you. Ive slept with guys whove had more experience and guys whove had less, and you can tell the difference, so I always wonder: can they tell that about me?
There are lots of things that are way more pleasurable than penetration
Matt, 28, more than 25 partners
The sex we see in the media is one-dimensional. Its nearly always penetrative, and that might be how you construct babies, but its not the best style to induce your partner climax. I had an illness when I was a child, which meant I lost one of my legs. Disabled people have a blessing in a manner that is, because they learn that there are lots of other things that you can do that are style more pleasurable.
I discovered that confidence is a trick when I was at university. Its a style of holding your head up and faking it, because women dont actually care how you seem. But I also realised that the best thing I could do was to learn how to induce women genuinely enjoy themselves. So much of sex education is not based on female pleasure at all. A lot of men have a narrative in their head about how sex should play out, which objective up prohibiting genuine experimentation. Some humen get intimidated by a woman who is sexually empowered or open because its not what they were taught was meant to happen.