August 21, 2019

"My man was afraid of dust. So we bid on an apartment that hadn’t even been built yet, and I spent the year making obsessive scrapbooks..."

"... just like my mother before me. I planned for wallpaper (my friend Payton Cosell Turner’s Flat Vernacular does the best, and I’ve had the same pattern in three bedrooms in three apartments) and bought Josef Frank pillows and Nancy’s Blushes Farrow & Ball paint for the bedroom. I had art by Rob Pruitt and Ellen Berkenblit ready to go (queer and female painters are my thing). I even had all my mother’s Melmac dishes in queasy pastels. He was on tour, so she and I set the kitchen up, stuffed the closets, and placed the tchotchkes on the mantel for the great unveiling. And he hated it. He didn’t want to hate it. He tried not to hate it. But he didn’t like living among the insides of my mind. I thought I was giving him a gift, like the time I came home from summer camp and my mother had painted my walls four different chalky colors and installed a poster, a candle shaped like a slice of honeydew melon, and an inflatable chair (all this for under $100 at Woolworth’s—RIP Woolworth’s). I wanted to give him the magic that she’d always given me by dreaming her maddening dreams. But he wanted a Restoration Hardware couch and a giant watch to hang on the wall. I felt sick every time I made a design concession or covered up pink with dove gray. Love can only survive so much."

From "Lena Dunham Finds Her Happy Place/After years of chasing (and mentally decorating) her dream space—and with a bevy of projects in the works, including the upcoming HBO series Industry—actress, director, producer, and podcast host Lena Dunham discovers home is where you make it" (Domino).

If you're like me, your first question is: What the hell is a "bevy"? Can you really have "a bevy of projects"? According to the OED, a "bevy" is "The proper term for a company of maidens or ladies, of roes, of quails, or of larks." I think a "bevy" is composed of human or animal creatures. Interestingly and as you might suspect if you stopped and thought about it, the word "bevy" is (probably) related to "beverage" and "it has been conjectured that bevy may have passed from the sense of ‘drinking-bout’ to ‘drinking-party,’ and to ‘party’ or ‘company’ generally." But is it wrong to use "bevy" for a collection of inanimate objects or abstract things (like "projects")? No. It originally referred animate creatures, but there are examples of the inanimate use going back to the 17th century.

With that out of the way, let's proceed to the second thing that jumps off the page, which is something more deep and substantive: interior decoration and intimate relationships. Is the shared home the woman's space, to be decorated according to her taste, and it's the man's role to feel grateful he is accepted into the warmth of a home and to make a separate space for himself (a den or workshop or man-cave) if he wants? If yes, is it more yes when the woman has thrown off a traditional sex roles and styles herself a feminist?

Thirdly, Dunham's relationship with the man who was afraid of dust ended. We're told that as he left, he said — "through tears" — "You can finally eat in the bed without anyone getting mad at you." Let me suggest — for your comments pleasure — the topic of what interior decoration says about the relationship that exists and that is planned. If you make a space that very aggressively says "I exclude you," won't your companion eventually take a hint? Or is there a companion — a better companion? — who can live lightly and pleasurably within his loved one's distinctive space and goes out for a walk or retreat into his den when he needs restoration and Restoration Hardware?

Finally, when a relationship has ended, does a person find solace in thinking about inanimate things? He was afraid not of me, not of intimacy, but of dust. But what is the fear of dust? The fear of death? You can have a home, you can decorate it with the most aspirational taste and personality, it's so specifically yours, but there really is no one special place for you.... All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.

104 comments:

stlcdr said...

Firstly, what a bunch of twaddle.

stevew said...

And so we are given a glimpse in the mind of a narcissist.

"I thought I was giving him a gift,"

By decorating the place according to your tastes and preferences, not his?

My wife, of 39 years, does the decorating. She asks for my opinion of her ideas for colors and patterns and furniture. I really don't care but do exercise veto power over anything I have a strong negative opinion about (rare). It is probably true that our tastes are very similar, which would explain the lack of controversy.

Jack Klompus said...

This vapid cow still exists?

Sebastian said...

A touring musician afraid of "dust"? I call BS.

Anyway, young men of America! Look at the pictures! Read the text! Revisit the hot-crazy matrix! Plan your life accordingly. You have no excuse.

Fernandistein said...

What the hell is a "bevy"?

A bevy is a large group or collection.

Can you really have "a bevy of projects"?

Hmm, a large collection of projects? I dunno, that sounds pretty unpossible.

Dave Begley said...

Ashes to ashes. Dust to dust.

He really left her because of her tats and she was lousy in the sack.

Why is she telling us this? Why is she calling out this guy?

Ralph L said...

She worked for a year on it and never showed or spoke about any of it to him (and he never asked)?

Lots of product placement was my first impression.

MadisonMan said...

Obsessive Scrapbooks. Sounds like a mental affliction to me.

I see she has an upcoming HBO thing coming up. The Hollywood Publicity machines smiles, and cashes her checks.

AlbertAnonymous said...

Lena Dunham? Honestly Professor. What’s the story behind your Lena Dunham obsession? I just don’t get it...

Mr Wibble said...

Anyway, young men of America! Look at the pictures! Read the text! Revisit the hot-crazy matrix! Plan your life accordingly. You have no excuse.

If I ever end up like any of those losers I'd kill myself.

At this rate I'm resigned to aging bachelorhood.

Fernandistein said...

According to the OED, a "bevy" is "The proper term for a company of maidens or ladies, of roes, of quails, or of larks."

That doesn't mean it's not also the proper term for a bunch of projects.

I think a "bevy" is composed of human or animal creatures.

Like other dictionaries, OED disagrees with you:

"Do they portend a military alliance against France between a Fascist Italy and a Fascist Germany, with a bevy of East European satellites—Bulgaria, Albania, Hungary, Austria—to balance Poland and the Little Entente?"

henry said...

calling debris from eating in bed "dust" speaks to what a total slob Dunham is. I assume there is zero intersection between her "taste" in decorating and anything I'd tolerate, thus no clickee on linkee.

dustbunny said...

I don’t think the majority of straight men care that much about decoration as long as it isn’t aggressively in your face as I’m sure anything Dunham would create need be. I haven’t seen the photos but it does sound like the inside of her relentlessly self- focused head. Seems seems quite disturbed to me but then I don’t relate to her talents.

tim maguire said...

My wife and I have different tastes. The default is, we do what she wants. I can win on specific issues if I'm willing to fight for them. Except, in the end, we wind up doing what she wanted to do anyway.

Seeing Red said...

wall. I felt sick every time I made a design concession or covered up pink with dove gray. Love can only survive so much."

She’s a sick individual.

Wince said...

...actress, director, producer, and podcast host Lena Dunham discovers home is where you make it.

Are they sure with this "discovery" Dunham simply didn't mishear that aphorism?

Gahrie said...

She describes him as "My man" but would flip her lid if she was described as someone's woman.

Seeing Red said...


Obsessive Scrapbooks. Sounds like a mental affliction to me.

I thought binders full was a no-no?

Ralph L said...

He actually broke up because he didn't like her (then) latest tattoo.

Gahrie said...

Like other dictionaries, OED disagrees with you:

Althouse can be remarkably pedantic when she's not claiming the right to define the meaning of words.

SeanF said...

stevew: And so we are given a glimpse in the mind of a narcissist.

"I thought I was giving him a gift,"

By decorating the place according to your tastes and preferences, not his?


Reminds me of the "Simpsons" episode where Homer's birthday gift to Marge is a bowling ball.

Marge: It's got your name engraved on it.
Homer: That's so you'll remember who it's from.
Marge: And the holes are drilled to fit your hand.
Homer: Well, I couldn't very well cut your hand off and take it to the shop, could I?!

Gahrie said...

Lena Dunham? Honestly Professor. What’s the story behind your Lena Dunham obsession? I just don’t get it...

She has a thing for women who attack men.

SF said...

The dust thing makes me instantly suspect the guy is on the autism spectrum.

The Dunham quotes make me sure she is insanely narcissistic. Redecorating your shared space without input or even permission from your partner is extremely selfish. If your "love" cannot survive the fact he doesn't worship every choice you made doing that, it was never meaningful love in the first place.

I have a lot of sympathy for the guy...

doctrev said...

JFarmer, I should ask you: do you think Lena Dunham or Ben Shapiro is the greater contributor overall to global anti-Semitism? Obviously the horrific machinations behind Weinstein and Epstein are worse in that regard, but that's hardly whimsical. I'm tempted to say Shapiro, simply because Lena Dunham has boobs and at least has some marginal creative talent that a wholly derivative intellect like Shapiro lacks.

Anyways! I don't know if she's lost weight or it's just my dramatically slipping standards, but Lena Dunham isn't that bad physically. She knows her audience of vaguely doughy feminist white girls, and appeals to them with true cunning. It's really hard for me to not understand that: maybe she could slim down for the right man? She's not my girlfriend, and never will be. Mentally she's turning into a stereotypical Jewish mother who doesn't actually have a man or children, and the manner in which she describes her metamorphosis into that phase of control and passive-aggressive dissatisfaction convinces me that she too is aware of it. The man is obviously smart to escape that by any means necessary, including gnawing his own foot off like a coyote stuck in a trap, but to describe all this carefully curated materialism as Lena's "happy place" is so ironic that I can't help feeling Lena is as aware of it as I am.

There was a time when I would have taken some glee in noting these facts. Now it's truly sad. You are Jewish, Lena, which means you should consider living in Israel for a time. I really think it would do wonders for you.

Phil said...

I find myself about to comment on a thread about Lena Dunham, and realize that I am reading entirely too much in the way of blogs. Time to pare down. (This is not a comment. It's a meta-comment).

WK said...

If he liked it then he would have put a ring on it.

BleachBit-and-Hammers said...

I can now start to like Mumford and Sons. Thank you.

eee gads she's a nightmare.

tcrosse said...

One trembles to think what might be in her record collection.

BleachBit-and-Hammers said...

When I went to design school a billion years ago, (it was all women and gay guys) we'd sit around and say the word "Whimsy" or "whimsical" and bust out laughing.


I do like her coffee table legs.
Plump. Like her.

Darrell said...

I would like to gift these two with a deluxe cabin on the Titanic. Commuting is their responsibility.

gilbar said...

so, this Lena girl FINALLY got a guy; who (of course!) was messed up in the head AND phobic
So, without telling him, she did stuff that a gradeschool girl would have liked
And, he was still enough of a guy to
a) hate
b) dump her fat ass

Frankly, i'm surprised about it all...

MadisonMan said...

The default is, we do what she wants. I can win on specific issues if I'm willing to fight for them. Except, in the end, we wind up doing what she wanted to do anyway.

This is my world too. Happy Wife, Happy Life, as they say. I don't really trust my color judgement, and my wife has good taste. When we remodeled, she did almost all the choosing, I just said something if I really didn't like it. And I earned the money used to do it.

gilbar said...

i've always (only) used bevy for the expression

a bevy of buxom babes

Which does NOT seem applicable here

jaydub said...

A more honest but somewhat strained title to this article might be "Lena Dunham Has Been Irrelevant for a While Now, But We Decided to Help Her Try to Resurrect Her Career With Some Fawning Gibberish."

BTW, the first thought that came to my mind was her "mental decoration of her dream space" would almost certainly be more suitable for a psych ward than and apartment. The second was "this unappealing, egoistical cow has a boyfriend?" The third thing was rather than moving in with an emasculating, radical feminist why not save yourself the misandry and consider murder-suicide or at least suicide?

Ann Althouse said...

"Hmm, a large collection of projects? I dunno, that sounds pretty unpossible."

"Like other dictionaries, OED disagrees with you..."

Just as a matter of basic courtesy, could you complete your reading of my paragraph before "correcting" me?

Here's my paragraph:

"If you're like me, your first question is: What the hell is a "bevy"? Can you really have "a bevy of projects"? According to the OED, a "bevy" is "The proper term for a company of maidens or ladies, of roes, of quails, or of larks." I think a "bevy" is composed of human or animal creatures. Interestingly and as you might suspect if you stopped and thought about it, the word "bevy" is (probably) related to "beverage" and "it has been conjectured that bevy may have passed from the sense of ‘drinking-bout’ to ‘drinking-party,’ and to ‘party’ or ‘company’ generally." But is it wrong to use "bevy" for a collection of inanimate objects or abstract things (like "projects")? No. It originally referred animate creatures, but there are examples of the inanimate use going back to the 17th century."

Now... what's your problem?

I'll accept apologies.

Greg said...

Am I the only one whose brain automatically translated "mentally decorating" to "mentally deteriorating". I had to read the sentence twice instead of skimming.

Cato Renasci said...

SWMBO does most of our decorating, but always consults me on both general 'look' and most specifics. I'm not interested in trying to decorate, but I have (she tells me) good taste and a good sense of what does and does not work. It pretty much works for us because she's more interested than I am, but I have fairly strong reactions if I don't think something works with the rest of the place or if I simply strongly dislike something. OTOH, she's bolder and better with colors than I am, and I (usually) giver her a fair bit of latitude with colors. It's a collaborative process, which is the point, and I have more leeway in the library/my study where my stamp is more pronounced (and which I care about more than many other rooms).

Mr Wibble said...

And so we are given a glimpse in the mind of a narcissist.

"I thought I was giving him a gift,"

By decorating the place according to your tastes and preferences, not his?


I see a lot of dating profiles where women tout that they own their own home, and the profiles always make me less interested in them. Perhaps it's paranoia, but I always think, "if you're so far along in your life, what do you need me for, except as decoration?"

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...


“He actually broke up because he didn't like her (then) latest tattoo.”

Probably not literally true but essentially true. These people are so neurotic and shallow and emotionally vampiric that any bullshit pretext will work. Their bond was likely the slenderest of silken threads anyway. I’ve always cringed when listening to some awkward emo chick prate about her “boyfriend”, knowing that he doesn’t really give a shit about her.

Michael K said...

Maybe she could help Oberlin pay the judgement. It would be something useful, in contrast to the rest of her life.

Michael K said...

I always think, "if you're so far along in your life, what do you need me for, except as decoration?"

I was sitting in the nurses' station one night years ago and overheard a nurse talking to a friend on the telephone about some new relationship. She said to her friend, "If you own your own home what do you need a man for ?"

I almost laughed out loud.

mccullough said...

I will show you fear in a handful of dust

rehajm said...

She didn't meet the wouldn't kick her out of bed for eating crackers standard.

Ice Nine said...

Best thing that ever happened to him.

Notwithstanding the fact that it is now widely known that he was actually attracted to a pig.

Ann Althouse said...

"She said to her friend, "If you own your own home what do you need a man for ?""

Sometimes people are using humor. Even women. That you laughed is a reason to see that's it's humor, but men often assume women are not doing humor. I see that all the time.

gilbar said...

man: a vibrator, with a wallet

Ann Althouse said...

@mccullough

Thanks for that reference!

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Althouse's Second Point is very important. " interior decoration and intimate relationships. Is the shared home the woman's space, to be decorated according to her taste, and it's the man's role to feel grateful......"

The home is a shared space and both parties should have input into how it is decorated and appointed. Everyone's taste and personality gets to be reflected in the totality of the home.

If it were the Man in this story making all the decisions and had a 409 engine with a glass top as a coffee table as the centerpiece of a home decorated completely in garage-mahal style, the reaction would be about what a misogynistic pig asshole the man is.

Point #3 is also so very important. " the topic of what interior decoration says about the relationship that exists and that is planned. If you make a space that very aggressively says "I exclude you," won't your companion eventually take a hint?"

When we were building and then decorating our home, my husband and I carefully made decisions between us. Fortunately, we mostly agreed. Somethings, like the kitchen style and floor plan were not that important to him. Color on walls, carpet, floor, furniture that we BOTH would be using....very important. We decided on neutrals and can accessorize with changeable colors. No pinks of any kind for him. That was non negotiable. I hate pink too.

Hubby is a car aficionado and would LOVE the 409 coffee table :-) Me not so much in the living room. In his office at the shop...if you want OK. So we compromised and have some display areas for his collectable car models and some interesting art prints and paintings of vintage autos. I love art deco pottery and art deco art. We have some of that as well.

PLUS. The decoration style that Dunham described sounds HIDEOUS. Pink. Clutter. Girly fluffy stuff. GAG ME!!!! Hurk!!!

Infinite Monkeys said...

She is tiresomely self-absorbed. Maybe I'm biased. I've spent a lot more time watching Bleachers videos than anything by her even though her shows were an hour long and the music videos are only a couple of minutes. He has entertained me, she has not.

madAsHell said...

Only a fat fuck would eat in bed.

reader said...

The house is mine and the garage is his. Because I love him there is a framed poster of a goat in my kitchen (Bully Hill Vineyards). It is the only thing left from his apartment 27 years ago. I wouldn’t do anything that he doesn’t like but he really doesn’t care..,except for the goat.

Quaestor said...

If you're like me, your first question is: What the hell is a "bevy"?

Not being like Althouse my first question was addressed to myself: Can I endure yet another Lena Dunham meme and suppress the urge to gnaw my own foot off like any self-respecting trapped animal?

Is the shared home the woman's space, to be decorated according to her taste...

Yes. I discovered early on that "shared" is very loosely defined in most relationships. My first live-in love affair taught me to shut-up and cave-up. When my erstwhile apartment mate moved out to live with his girlfriend I resolved to get mine to take his place as a rent payer. GF (her name was Ann, btw) shared a three-bedroom two-level flat with three other girls. When she moved in with me she brought only a stick or two of furniture with her, but two closets full of clothes and more shoes than I thought practical or frankly even sane. While living there with a male roomie I hardly bothered to decorate — just a few pictures on the wall pertaining to interesting subjects like sailing ships, horses, and a large print of Lady Elizabeth Bulter's "Scotland Forever!". With the arrival of Ann, things began to change. The first to go was my table cloth, its dark Black Watch tartan replaced with something butter-yellow and textured. It makes the meal more cheery, I was informed. Since we shared the large bedroom the vacant small bedroom was available for my desk and bookcase, which was lucky because if not for its bare walls my prints would have disappeared instead of being rehung in my tiny sanctum sanctorum. Ann never disturbed "Scotland Forever!" even though she said it was horrid-looking probably because it was too long for any other wall in our apartment. My collection of 1/48th-scale model planes also got banished from the more public parts of our dwelling. And my meager toiletries from our tiny bathroom... and on it went as one may surmise. Moral: when a woman asks your opinion about anything — punt, and retire to the cave with as much of your dignity as remains.


Quaestor said...

If yes, is it more yes when the woman has thrown off traditional sex roles and styles herself a feminist?

Point me to an example of feminism requiring it's adherents to be logically consistent on anything and I'll be able to answer.

Birches said...

Antenoff promised her they would marry when it was legal for everyone. Gay marriage became legal and....that should have been Lena's first clue. He wants kids, she just wanted to get pregnant to have an abortion, seems like a match made in heaven, right?

Quaestor said...

Dunham's relationship with the man who was afraid of dust ended. We're told that as he left, he said — "through tears" — "You can finally eat in the bed without anyone getting mad at you."

I suspect Dunham's "man" was not a man in any strictly biological sense.

J. Farmer said...

Sounds like two incredibly neurotic people discovered each other but couldn't make it work. Nothing especially unique there. See Camille Paglia on big pile of pudding Dunham.

Bruce Hayden said...

“With that out of the way, let's proceed to the second thing that jumps off the page, which is something more deep and substantive: interior decoration and intimate relationships. Is the shared home the woman's space, to be decorated according to her taste, and it's the man's role to feel grateful he is accepted into the warmth of a home and to make a separate space for himself (a den or workshop or man-cave) if he wants? If yes, is it more yes when the woman has thrown off a traditional sex roles and styles herself a feminist?”

That is easy for me - it’s the woman’s space. But I have never gone through the sort of finding of a shared design, but rather a woman’s interior design is part of what I subconsciously evaluate when getting to know her and evaluate her as a long run girlfriend, or even wife. The funny thing is that over the last 7-8 women in that category (from essentially when they had their own houses), all but one had houses that my mother would have not felt uncomfortable in. The one kept a messy house, messily decorated, etc, and it took me a long time to figure out why I knew from the first that I didn’t want to marry her (while she desperately wanted to marry me). In the houses of all those women, not a one had anything except off white walls. No randomly placed junk, too many knick backs, etc.

Then there is my partner, now of 20 years. This house in MT is hers, so decorated, from the floor up by her. So, I expected to be able to design the interior (or even the exterior) of the house that I (not we) bought in Phoenix. Nope. I have two rooms upstairs and the garage. The rest is hers.

I am not sure that my mother would have felt comfortable in my partner’s houses, because my mother was a talented amateur. My partner was professionally trained, was certified, and did well working in the field. Her houses look it. Several of her houses have been in Architectural Digest. That means a flamboyance that amateurs rarely can pull off. This house has a lot of gold and a little red to tie in all of the wood - golden wood floors, ceilings, wainscoting, etc. Gold and red candles. Furniture is either black, or dark brown. A lot of antiques, including the leather coated coffee and end tables here in the living room. First house of hers I saw was in jewel tones, including an Italian black and green marble dining room set. The next one (that I ultimately bought from her) had burgundy carpet, white furniture, blue as the secondary color, with cherry and a lighter hard wood as the woods. Having too much furniture, with the new house, she has managed to blend it together. Even that marble dining room set.

Laslo Spatula said...

I guess he's just going to make do with the Lena Dunham sex doll.

I am Laslo.

Bruce Hayden said...

(Continued)

Things may be improving though. There is an antique/consignment/firearms store in town that I dragged her to earlier this summer, to replace some of the knickknacks that I had inadvertently broken very time. In particular, she needed something to go on the end table between the two sofas to replace the plaster elk that I had knocked off. She declared most of the stuff we found there junk. But we did find a small bronze cowboy, that very much looks like a Remington (but isn’t, because of the cost). And then I saw two upright glass gun cases sitting side by side. A week later, I was back in there checking out guns, but also looking at the gun cases. One of them had her first name on it. Asked the owner about it, and he demurred. So, I asked my partner, and she had a conniption. Apparently she and my kid had bought it for me for my (still) upcoming birthday. Last week we finally picked it up, and got it as far as the garage. Need some help getting it up a half flight of stairs. She has been moving things around the house in her head to find a good place for it. But that means finding places for what it displaces, and what that displaces. A straight guy would probably just cart it in and be done with it. But she is a perfectionist. Her current thoughts are that it be visible from the front door, suggesting to potential intruders that we are armed. But being visible in the living room means that at least some of the guns in it have to stand out. The guy with the store has three antiques for sale. Plus a couple of Henry lever action Golden Boys (I am only buying one, due to their cost, just can’t decide on caliber yet).

The big problem here, since it is her house, is that I don’t have any space of my own. So, last year I bought the lots on either side, and this summer decided to build a large garage on one of them. Still wrangling with the HOA, but expect to get approval, and maybe even pour the slab, before we head south for the winter. This I will get to decorate (or, from her point of view, not) to my heart’s content. Workbench down one wall, storage on the opposite wall, bathroom and office in the back, as well as a large gun safe. Etc. Toys in the middle. Single guy behind us had just bought a turbocharged Polaris Rzr, and in front of it was parked a late model slate gray Corvette. I lusted after both. Plus, I have been looking at an older lifted Jeep for sale by the road about 40 miles west of here. Will check to see if it is still there today, and if the price has dropped again.

I am fine with her having complete control over the inside of the house, as long as I get my 1200 sq ft man cave.

Quaestor said...

Eating in bed...

That's what one would expect from a porker like Dunham.

rehajm said...

I've seen that Paglia take on Dunham before. I'll let her figure out what kind of feminism is going on but I think she gives Dunham's shtick too much credit. A simple embrace of repugnancy once discovered she's repugnant is all you need to know.

The artsy fartsy parents in the right circles is all to need to know about how Lena keeps getting shows. Paglia's spot on with Lena having nothing interesting to say, not that stops her. Eventually it will...

BleachBit-and-Hammers said...

Pudding in bed attracts ants.

The Minnow Wrangler said...

I am ashamed to admit I have something in common with Lena Dunham. When I moved from Nebraska to Kansas I only brought the things I liked, after spending several months getting rid of 24 years worth of "stuff" I didn't want or need. I am extremely averse to adding new furnishings to my home at this point due to the effort it took to dispose of everything. Large dumpster, 15 bags worth of legal files that had to be shredded, an entire library of law books, several truckloads of donations to the Salvation Army, and about six people's worth of camping supplies and equipment which I gave to my handyman and my stepdaughter.

So when I met the guy I married about a year ago, I was delighted to learn that he was renting a furnished house and had almost no possessions of his own beyond clothing, a couple of TV's, and some pool cues and towels. He had been widowed a few years before I was, and moved out of his former home with only what would fit in his car.

So basically all I had to do was clean out half the closet and part of the dresser and he was seamlessly moved in. There was no friction over whose sofa was nicer or anything like that. And we lived happily ever after LOL.

todd galle said...

Questor,
Excellent choices in masculine deco. I had a print of Fripp's Isandlwana framed on my wall before marriage, now it resides in the gun room, perhaps appropriately. On a recent trip to Edinburgh, we ate at the Ensign Ewart. Ens. Ewart participated in the charge, and the pub had a whole wall dedicated to the event and regiment.

Rob said...

How is Dunham supposed to find someone willing to go into that musty old claptrap?

Michael K said...

I am fine with her having complete control over the inside of the house, as long as I get my 1200 sq ft man cave.

My wife and I got back together after 25 years divorced. We moved to Tucson where I had had another house with a "Lady" and now have a single story house just the right size for two rather elderly folks.

What is amusing (to me anyway) is that she still had all the furniture from when we were married 40 years ago. So, there was no problem in choosing furniture and I like tile floors so that was my department. I get one bedroom for my office.

Kevin said...

Is the shared home the woman's space, to be decorated according to her taste, and it's the man's role to feel grateful he is accepted into the warmth of a home and to make a separate space for himself (a den or workshop or man-cave) if he wants? If yes, is it more yes when the woman has thrown off a traditional sex roles and styles herself a feminist?

Yet another set of problems a bevy of sex robots will solve.

Quaestor said...

I have that Fripp myself, but I seldom look at it. When I do I can only see that boy in the front rank pointing childishly at the charging impis come to slaughter him. Is he a drummer? Is the soldier behind him pulling him back or pushing him forward? He's unarmed. He's helpless. Somebody give that boy a gun!

Likewise, I can only see trumpeter in Lady Butler's picture. Evidently, he's just been struck by a musket ball. There's no blood showing but he's leaning as if to fall backward over his mount's croup. He's dropped the reins and lost his busby but not his trumpet. The trooper to his right is struggling to prevent his fall. What did his last note sound like? Blat or splat?

Kevin said...

I'm starting to believe radical feminism was started by people who foresaw the possibility of sex robots and needed some way to create the social forces that would make them not only acceptable but necessary.

If so, it's working beautifully.

PJ57 said...

I enjoyed Quaestor's comments about his "shared" home with a certain Ann. Over the course of my 30-year, mostly unhappy marriage -- kept together due to our shared love of somewhat undamaged children -- I have seen my wife take out all her passive aggression (and sometimes active aggression) against me through innumerable decorating choices. Light fixtures of a size that I can bash my head against them (I am tall, she is short), most every time I rise from a kitchen chair. Our perfectly functional (and cleanable) kitchen farm table replaced with a steel and stone monstrosity which is so cold and ugly that it needs to be covered with place mats which are soiled with food at every meal and need delicate cleaning. A living room which no one ever uses -- the house is more than 100 years old and the living room has the lightness and aesthetic quality of a North Korean prison -- endlessly and expensively redecorated with furniture that we sit on maybe 5 times a year. constant complaints about my book collection, which aside from clothing is my only possession. A basement that floods and should have been filled with gravel 20 years ago but which is rehabilitated and redecorated after every time some storm fills it with water.

Hell IS other people, especially if you uneasily share a living space with them.

Marc said...

I found interesting the fact that 'beverage' used to mean 'lemonade' in the West Indies and 'small cider' in Devonshire.

Christy said...

I once had a pink, little girl pink, living room / dining room. I thought I'd picked a sand color. As I painted, I thought, "This will tone down after the second coat. This will dry to a beige color." I cried when it finally dried. Unwilling to immediately repaint, I cut the pink with dark green curtains, walls of lovely bookcases, and lots of artwork on or in front of the walls. Turned into a happy space.

Ralph L said...

The lead horse in Butler's painting looks like a cartoon animal that's about to say something cheery to the audience.

Some of the other horses have heads too big, but perhaps that adds to the excitement.

Bill Peschel said...

Showing the pictures to my young adult daughter who's an artist was amusing. It's especially funny hearing her reaction in her sarcastic high-pitched gravely voice:

The red trench coat: "That's the ugliest damn coat I've ever seen."

Praise for the "neon pink" walls: "That's salmon!"

The blue bird statues on the living room table: "That's kitchy!"

The Gilda poster/dresser: "That cat on the floor's the first thing that gets kicked."

The general color scheme: "What's with the blue / pink / purple palette?"

The fireplace shot: "That poor plant's gonna suffer every time she lights a fire."

The bathroom towels: [Especially offended] "Who monograms their towels?"



exiledonmainstreet, green-eyed devil said...

Oh, for the days when I happily thought I'd never hear or see or read about this dumpy dullard ever again.

I suppose I should be thankful she's not taking off her clothes.

SDaly said...

I am hoping the Lena is gearing up to campaign for Elizabeth Warren.

Jupiter said...

I started to read that, and I felt as if I had lost 30 or 40 IQ points in the first two sentences. So I scanned down a bit, and saw "Lena Dunham". So that's OK. God, imagine living in a brain like that.

F said...

I thought an agglomeration of larks was an "exaltation." How could I have been mistaken on that? "An exaltation of larks" just kind of rolls right off my tongue.

Oh, and Lena Dunham? Really? Again? Ugh.

whitney said...

For me, that relationship would have ended the minute he said I'm afraid of dust.

Freeman Hunt said...

That apartment *does* look like one would imagine the interior of her mind, so she got her money's worth from the designer.

Freeman Hunt said...

At our house, we decide on the decorating together. We are both stubborn and enjoy an occasional passionate argument. Seems to work out just fine.

whitney said...


Blogger J. Farmer said...
Sounds like two incredibly neurotic people discovered each other but couldn't make it work. Nothing especially unique there. See Camille Paglia on big pile of pudding Dunham.

Great link! Thanks

Quaestor said...

Some of the other horses have heads too big, but perhaps that adds to the excitement.

uh... Never heard of foreshortening, eh?

Lady Butler painted that 66 years after the famous charge (that wasn't a charge at all). To get that "you are there" effect Lady Bulter photographed a squadron of the 2nd Dragoons charging directly at her at a speed that no cavalry unit would ever attempt in actual battle. Using her the photos as models she painted the scene with the correct weapons, uniforms, accouterments, etc.

The actual charge of the Greys at Waterloo was at a walk or brisk trot, which made it easier for them to use their carbines and swords on the French infantry. When Sergeant Ewart took the eagle of the French 45th Regiment of the Line his horse was basically standing in place, kicking and lunging at anyone approaching too close. Then the cry "Charge for the guns!" was heard, maybe from Ponsonby himself. Many of the Union Brigade charged a nearby French battery about 200 yards distant, including most of the Greys, who killed dozens of French gunners and managed to spike a few of their cannons. However, after finally responding to the recall trumpet, their horses were too spent to outrun the enemy lancers sent by Ney to counterattack them.

Tomcc said...

I have three thoughts. Not two or four, just three:
First, I applaud Prof. Althouse for her persistence in sifting through the chaff that is today's media.
Second, I have no interest in reading any more than the selected quotes, but I assume that we only have Ms. Dunham's word that this guy was "afraid of dust".
Third: many years ago, my wife and I moved into a new house together. Among my prized possessions- a stereo system with somewhat large speakers. I placed the stereo in the alcove next to the fireplace in the family room, with the speakers on either side of it. About a month later, I came home from work to find them in the garage. (Eventually found some small ones that she could tolerate)

Quaestor said...

That apartment *does* look like one would imagine the interior of her mind...

Yep. An interminable, rambling joke long since worn out by Peewee Herman.

JAORE said...

I enjoyed Quaestor's comments about his "shared" home with a certain Ann. Over the course of my 30-year, mostly unhappy marriage -- kept together due to our shared love of somewhat undamaged children --

Interesting. Do you think your children are unaware? Do you think your children understand what a healthy relationship looks like?

Sebastian said...

"Is the shared home the woman's space, to be decorated according to her taste"

No. Not if you are serious about equality. Actual equality. As I am. Of course, that doesn't exclude tact and compromise.

You just need to choose the right woman--sensible, not-crazy, with good taste.

JAORE said...

This obsession borders on the romantic.

Like stuffing pebbles inside your baby sister's hoo-haw?

One persons romantic is an others creeeeeeepy.

Kelly said...

I’ve decorated almost all our houses and there have been many considering my husbands 20 plus military career. He Doesn't really care as long as he has a recliner. And I know enough to know that he wouldn’t put up with pink walls although during the country mauve and blue phase there were an awful lot of pink accents. Poor guy never cared, I don’t think he really noticed.

Ralph L said...

Never heard of foreshortening, eh?

Yes, but I think she exaggerated it a bit on some horses. The main row's heads are nearly as large as the leading horse. If she'd photoed a charge en masse, she'd have been run over.

rcocean said...

I am so tired of hearing about this no-talent unfunny Bitch. Can she just die? Thank you. And take Cindy McCain with you.

rcocean said...

Althouse has my admiration. Imagine someone with so strong a stomach they could get through an article about Lena Dunham. Astounding!

rcocean said...

A group of quail is a flock, covey, or bevy.

Jamie said...

Ok, I've been with my husband for 30 years now, and it took only a couple of months for me to learn that something I took for granted in home furnishing was anathema to him.

I was a military brat, accustomed to moving every couple or three years, and in addition, my mom's response to stress was to rearrange the furniture. So I grew up in a house (actually in houses) where things moved around a lot. My husband's childhood home is still his mom's home today, and she - once she determined where she wanted something to go - NEVER moved anything. So, one day I got home from school earlier than my then-boyfriend and decided to surprise him by rearranging our living room. He took one look and his face shut down. I asked what was the matter; we talked; he finally summed up with, "I just don't like change."

From that day to this, I approach redecorating and home purchases with care and deliberation, with battlefield preparation and sympathy, and we've gotten along just fine.

Jamie said...

Oh, and "dust" is totally unrelated to eating in bed. My sympathies are with the guy.

todd galle said...

I'm wondering, I will have to go down to the basement library to see if I can find what I think is my source, that the charge began as a stirrup charge, with infantry from the Scots Guards holding the stirrups of the Scots Greys to pull the infantry forward. That would certainly keep the cavalry from riding hell for leather. I might be thinking of a different action though. Always possible with my memory. Still, dissing Lady Butler is not cricket, besides horses are crap to paint.

todd galle said...

Hmm, being lazy I didn't go to the basement, but Bing suggests the Battle of St Quentin for the stirrup charge, 1914, with the 42nd rather than the Guards infantry. I still think there were earlier examples, and will have to look. The Borderers were always horse proud, and I think that this (using horse power to pull/drag footmen) was something developed (or perfected) during the 16-17th centuries of Border Reivers and travel between the English / Scottish border for raids and harassment.

gilbar said...

okay, speaking as a single (never married) white male [that is; as an EXPERT]....

In a relationship, the key is: Compromise.
You want Tile floor, she wants Bamboo... So you Compromise, and get Bamboo
You want Flattrack Racing prints, she wants Abstract Oils... So you Compromise, and get Abstracts
You want Neon Beer lights, she wants a chandelier... So you Compromise, and get a chandelier

BUT!
The Other key to a relationship is: Communication.
The man won't Know, HOW to compromise, unless You COMMUNICATE

"We're GETTING Bamboo."
"We're GETTING Abstract Oils."
"We're GETTING a chandelier."

Follow these two keys: Compromise, and Communication; and everything will be fine.
{redecorating the house, while he's on tour... is NOT the way}

thus speaketh the single white guy, who really Knows what he's talking about

Michael K said...

Interesting. Do you think your children are unaware? Do you think your children understand what a healthy relationship looks like?

My parents had an unhappy marriage as long as I was aware. Those used to be referred to as "Happy Irish Marriages."

They split up once my sister and I were gone. However, once my mother said to me, " You may be handsome but you'll never be as handsome as your father was."

He was an alcoholic and died at 66.



Phidippus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Phidippus said...

Ecclesiastes said: "All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again."

True. The ramifications of how this knowledge plays out among a race of talking tree monkeys provides endless entertainment to The Creator Of The Universe, or The Designers Of The Simulation, depending on your preference.

Separately, that is one hideous interior, AA-- where did you find it?

BTW, Dunham's "man" who was "afraid of dust" statement is another oxymoron. What is this, oxymoron day on the Althouse blog?

OTOH, if a "man" who is afraid of dust is a man, maybe Lena Dunham is a woman.

Bunkypotatohead said...

Her man deserves congratulations. He really dodged a bullet.

DavidUW said...

Far too many American women in “liberal” areas think like this. Which explains the 90% of my friends being married to foreign women, mostly Asians since it’s the Bay Area.

Quaestor said...

If she'd photoed a charge en masse, she'd have been run over.

Nope. Horses are amazingly adept at not running over people.