Sure looks like the Champs-Élysées to me:
Right: That’s the Empire State Building as seen from 29th Street in New York City, which I viewed on my walk to the Dutch Reformed church on 29th and Fifth on the evening of Sept. 29. I’m going to see Elizabeth Gilbert!
Life is so unfair. Liz Gilbert gets to do an author event on a stage such as this (see above) while I, on my first author event EVER, got the children’s department at a Barnes and Nobel store in Yonkers where I had to stand under a poster of Captain Underpants. Obviously, someone there had judged my book by its cover . . .
. . . and decided it was a children’s book.
Well, that’s what you get for not selling 20 million copies. But I’m not whining. Well, not much. Because I’m going to see Elizabeth Gilbert in person!
Elizabeth Gilbert’s very cool historic church event was ticketed and, OF COURSE, sold out :
Yes, you found him: that guy in the rainbow serape did get up to ask a question and he was crazy: mostly he wanted to tell Liz that she had called on him before at another event a year ago!!! and then complain how hard it is to make people love you.
Liz handled this guy with gentle humor and decisive kindness (got him to shut up without embarrassing him), which is how she spoke about her own struggle to stay engaged and productive while coping with all the demands of living an aware, open, adventuresome, and truthful life.
If you ever have the chance to see Elizabeth Gilbert speak about putting Big Magic to work in helping you deal with adversity, frustration, sadness, fear, perfectionism, and all those other things that prevent you from breaking free, you must go. Hey! Bainbridge Island! Liz is coming your way in March!
This evening at the Collegiate Dutch Reformed Church of Manhattan was made possible by the newly released paperback version of Big Magic (the book):
If you go to Liz’s Facebook page you can find a delightful and insightful video of her talking more about Big Magic . . . and, if you are very eagle-eyed, you will spot something quite fabulous on her bookshelf:
See it now?
Yep. That’s my very own, un-related to Captain Underpants book, When Wanderers Cease to Roam.
In the past, Liz has said and written very nice things about my books — she even blurbed my second one, Le Road Trip. And when my recent book came out in March, she graciously included it on her Spring Reading list:
OK, now I think I’ve accomplished everything I set out to achieve when I became a writer.
SPEAKING OF EAGLE EYES:
I was in my “Happy Place” (Home Goods) last week when I spotted this:
I love, adore, cherish, and covet this chair!
I loved it back in 2013, when I saw it in Paris, on display at the Musee Carnavalet:
And I loved it back in 2006, when I first saw it in my New Orleans hotel — the St. Louis (in the French Quarter) :
I loved it so much that I made an illustration of it in 2009 for a book about Adventures in Tea Time that I never did:
So, if you happen to come across this chair in your “Happy Place” (your local Home Goods), now you will know that it is a Chaise a la Montgolfiere, so called after the brothers Joseph-Michel and Jacques-Étienne Montgolfier, who ushered in the modern era of flight in 1783 when they demonstrated their invention, the hot-air balloon, at Versailles in the presence of King Louis XVI and his court. This successful exhibition before royalty made the Montgolfier brothers national heroes, and started a mania for all things baloony. The term montgolfière was applied to decorative arts, hair fashions, and dresses:
But getting back to the chair at Home Goods: This is not a cheap chair. It cost $249.99 at Home Goods, which is not in my budget even though it is the only one I’ve seen that comes with arm rests!!!
Vintage 1020s or 1950s reproductions of this chair are even more dear: they go for around 645 Euros ($710.11 American) each.
But I’m not whining. Well, not much. Because as soon as I sell 20 million copies of my books, you all know what I’m forking over an insane amount of money for:
And so, my Dear Readers, Remember: this blog comes to you free every Friday, so please support my continued presence in this totally gratuitous endeavor by giving everyone on your Christmas, Hannukah, and Kwanzaa list a copy of a V. Swift book. Tell them Liz Gilbert’s bookshelf told you to.
I’m just 19,999, 950 copies away from getting my dream dining room!