TUTTLE MODE

 by James Tuttle

Gentle reader,

Join me as we scrape the bottom of the barrel that is reality television.  Yes, I’m talking about the festival of talentless reality show rejects known as VH1’s Famous Food and don’t pretend you’ve been watching it, either!  No one has.  The ratings were so low after only a couple of weeks that it’s getting bumped out of its Sunday slot in favor of Behind the Music.  Yeah, ouch.

Don’t worry, though.  I’m here to catch you up on the whole fabulous train wreck!

Enough with the reality crap. Just give Jake Pavleka his own game show, already.

The idea of the show is pretty straightforward.  A group of seven “celebrities” get thirty days or so to open a restaurant and the one who contributes the most gets a share in the place.  One of their first ideas these dumb bitches had was to “call the restaurant ‘Fame,’ because we’re all famous!” but I don’t know who half these people are.  Probably the most well known contestants are the vilified Danielle Staub of the N. J. Housewives, The Hills’ cosmetic surgery poster child Heidi Montag and square-jawed Jake Pavelka whom you know from The Bachelor, Dancing with the Stars and his other desperate attempts to get famous.  My friend Cynthia Hirsch, an amazing chef who should really have her own damn show, said quite succinctly, “James, please.  All the people involved are disgusting losers.  I can’t watch TV any more because of this kind of crap.”

… Or maybe his own exercise program?

Well, she has a point.  As much as I hate to admit it, though, I had a lot of fun with Famous Food in these first two weeks.  The drama gets started early on when Danielle and the actor who played “Big Pussy” on The Sopranos, who should have really formed some New Jersey alliance thing, are at each other’s throats within the first few minutes.  When they take a break in the “go-fuck-yourself-you-bitch” Jersey-style team-building, Danielle pretends to take Heidi on a Starbucks run but they go downstairs to a wine bar and get shitfaced instead.  That was awesome.

Danielle and Heidi. Even on the better reality shows, it's best to stay drunk.

Later, the Eliot Spitzer hooker comes off as the brains of the operation in front of the bosses and this pisses off Danielle, who is proving quite good at making this show mostly about herself and thinks that one “prostitution-whorah” is enough.  She continues to pick fights then storm off in tears when anyone stands up to her but my favorite thing of all is watching pretty Jake Pavelka make silly faces and say dumb things while trying so hard to appear intelligent.  He’s clearly struggling to keep up and stay relevant and its just not working, poor thing.

I only saw about two-thirds of the second episode because Scott and I had a big falling out that started with what he should wear to his high school reunion in, coincidentally, New Jersey!  My motto for events like this is “fashionable yet appropriate” and that’s a tough call when you’re six miles from where the Real Housewives of NJ live.

Speaking of fashionable, I’ve discovered a couple of wonderful things that we really should have here in L.A. and don’t.  There is really no excuse with high-end boutiques like Opening Ceremony, H. Lorenzo and Confederacy that stock other incredible, unique pieces but it’s the sad reality.

For instance, I first learned about the talented Octavio Pizarro from our fabulous friend Diane Pernet’s online magazine A Shaded View of Fashion.  Octavio is a Chilean designer who has worked in Paris for many years.  After studying at L’Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale, he worked at Jean Louis Scherrer and was Creative Director at Jacques Fath for five years.  After a stint at Guy Laroche, he launched his own line in 2005 combining his South American sensibilities with Parisian luxury and craftsmanship.  His collection consists primarily of stoles, scarves and ponchos created from the finest merino wools and Alpaca from high in the Andes.

Andean drama from Octavio Pizarro

His latest collection for Fall/Winter 2012 recalled, for me, some beautiful romantic elements of the South American landscape presented with very couture details.  In Los Angeles, where every woman wants cardigans and wraps but wants them different, this shit would sell like penicillin in Bangkok.

My current Obsession of the Moment is the fascinating and original line of BL33N tee shirts by photographers Donovan and Matthias Vriens-McGrath.  I saw them a few days ago on OhLaLamag.com and when I did a little research to find out what the ideas behind the line might be, a great interview by none other than La Pernet popped up.  You can read it here.

BL33N make t-shirts, too. Promise. It's just someone stole them.

As for the shirts, there are a lot of fun ideas with poetry or fake tresses falling over the shoulders but my absolute favorites are the tees with monster faces printed upside down on the inside that you can pull up and cover your head to make a scary mask.  Cool, right?  Of course, it’s all the more charming when the monster has a smoking bod but, in any case, it makes me smile just to tell people about them.

Pay attention to the t-shirts, damn it!

I must have one immediately.  I would probably be wearing one now if they were sold in L.A. where they, incidentally, are manufactured!  Unfortunately, unless you are popping into the legendary Colette in Paris anytime soon, your only option is to order them online.  But how does one choose a size?  I’m sure an article on “How to Buy Clothes Online When You’ve Never Tried Them On” would be very helpful right about now but don’t expect me to write it because I don’t have a fucking clue.  My only exception is buying online from Balmain but that’s only because Hortense in their online boutique is such a doll and so helpful.  I wish she worked for BL33N.

Sigh.

Much love,

xxJames