A/N: The images displayed in this essay are not mine–Thank Goddess for Tumblr, Pinterest and Imagebam. Click the image for a link to its origins. Mostly unbeta’d, but preread by the luminous Bouffant. Any mistakes and stumbles belong to MEEEEEE. Musical playlist, per usual, at the bottom. While I try to normalize a posting schedule, click the “Sign Me Up!” button in the side panel to receive MOO updates in your Email…thissss-a-wayyy——>
“In order to get from what was to what will be,
you must go through what is.”
Hello, you beautiful, beautiful souls you. I must be honest: I didn’t know how to return to you after being away for so long. It’s been nearly two months since I’ve written a new Musings, therefore two months since feeling that connection with you all, which is by far the most rewarding reason for doing this “blog” in the first place. I do not know how to be anything but honest with you, so here’s the truth: I’ve suffered a beat-down–physically, emotionally, personally and professionally–and I not only hit a brick wall in my capacity to create, but I wavered in faith that I’d be able to recover. I’m nursing a broken heart. But nothing…nothing heals me better than Musing aloud with the finest and kindest souls I’ve ever encountered *side-eyes YOU ALL*.
In the past two months, the number of pristine Moments of Otherness have become uncountable. I won’t even attempt to highlight a singular event that impacted us RoyalRebelWatchers during these weeks. But I can pay homage to a few significant happenings that lovingly coaxed me out of my hiding place. I hope you’ll join me in my brief Musings on the splendor that has graced us since we last chatted. And then together we can look towards the greatness glimmering on the horizon, ok? Ok, then, off we go. #OtherOn #ThroughWhatIs
Go forth and set the world on fire.
~ St Ignatius Loyola
Since we last spoke, we were in Paris, and better yet, we were whimsically compelled in Paris. Kristen was photographed in a fantastical couture ball gown, and hanging with visionaries Karl Lagerfeld and Mario Testino. So Paris -Part Deux was surreal. And essential on many levels.
Our Reigning Other Queen’s appearances at various Paris Fashion Week events were her first in a professional capacity since becoming the newly-named ambassador for Balenciaga. She attended the Balenciaga showcase in the company of Anna Wintour and Salma Hayek. She met up with her “On the Road Boys” [which we’ll reference another time] at French lounges, and dropped by show rooms of fashion icons. In short, Kristen brought. it. She represented while clutching an incredible Stella McCartney bag and wearing a couple of different leather jackets that reduce me to tears.
Our RebelQueen handled her ambassador’s duties with finesse and grace, and with few, if any, words. Oh and also? Kristen wasn’t alone. No, she was surrounded by love and support provided by her elite team. Her steady assistant John, her incredibly winsome publicist Ruth, her stalwart bodyguard JB and an encouraging and proud partner Robert.
The crowning jewel atop the sparkling Parisian tour was Kristen’s visit to the opening of the Marc Jacobs-Louis Vuitton Exhibition. Wearing a leopard-print Vuitton minidress and gun metal-tipped heels, Ms Stewart landed atop nearly every fashion critic’s Best Dressed list, including British Vogue.
Now, I’m not someone you’d call a fashionista, not by a long shot. But I do possess an appreciation for lovely material, unexpected lines, and rich patterns that prompt a physical response–an intake of breath. And I can ascertain an inner strength that exudes from a woman who is on a sky-bound journey called Greatness. Her emergence as a composed and congruent woman has been a steady, tantalizing unveiling, but make no mistake: She. Is. Here.
“Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road.”
~Jack Kerouac, On The Road
So…as I worked through some painful decisions that impact the livelihood of my self and of my family, and more weeks melted away, I found myself cocooning for self preservation. As we’ve discussed before, there is an almost crucial compulsion to re-establish equilibrium for the recovery process to commence. And sometimes, we don’t know how to implement the healing. For me, I immediately withdraw and become quiet, so I can search for that still, small voice (some call this God, The Universe, Allah, Intuition, or…The Divine) to emerge. To access that inner compass, I write, listen to music, make some of my own music, and immerse in nature. I also look for guidelines as provided by strong models who surround me.
In a moment of startling clarity, and tremendous pride, I drank in the examples as exhibited by our Reigning Other Queen. You guise: the reason why I began writing Musings On Other Queens in the first place, almost two years ago, was to pay homage to an actress of uncommon poise and conviction.
I needn’t look any further for inspiration and gentle encouragement towards a courageous role model. These days, she is ev.er.y.where.
Kristen has been signed on to play Marylou in Francis Ford Coppola’s adaption of Jack Kerouac’s seminal novel On The Road for years. She was approached by filmakers to consider the role before her Twilight days. The film project itself has been in development since the 1960’s and the role call of artists attached to it over the decades is nothing short of legendary. And yet, it is just now, over sixty years after the original scroll was typed, that the story is at last available to and for public consumption.
Now, I know that the book On The Road isn’t everybody’s cup of tea. But it is my cup of tea. I read the book at an extremely fragmented time in my life–my senior year in high school, while I was determining colleges, and grappling with my first bout of depression. This book–along with the book The Perks of Being A Wallflower and my discovery of Joni Mitchell and Tori Amos–served as balm for my wistful, wild yearnings for it. The ‘it’ that Sal Paradise, Dean Moriarty and the ‘beautiful sharp tack’ Marylou also sought.
Kristen Stewart knew, when accepting the role of Marylou for this film, that she was undertaking an enormously important project. This film was not only a life vest for an aimless teenager like myself, but is the visual manifestation of a story that is referred to by cultural commentators and historians as the ‘defining work of a generation’. Ummmm. Ok, so in other words, a Big Fucking Deal.
So, while contemplating my next steps in reconnecting with Musings and you, I watched with saucer-sized eyes as our Ambassador of Otherness herself pushed through any reservations and fears she may have held. Per her usual method, Kristen immersed herself in Marylou’s story (‘Marylou’ is based on a lass called Luanne Henderson), attended Beatnik Bootcamp (dancing, listening to music, reading the literature of the time, watching films and discussions fostered by Kerouac, Ginsberg and Cassady). She divined her own inner mad Marylou to best connect with the motivations of a woman who was raw, wild, magnetic, simultaneously vulnerable and brimming with sexuality.
Ok, you see? She went there. She still waded through the stuff in order to genuinely experience this character. She is in the spotlight and under extreme scrutiny every single day which I can only imagine generates an ungodly amount of stress and anxiety. She is the new face of an iconic fashion line, and she is spearheading at least two high-profile projects all while trying to maintain her connection to her family and beloveds. She moves through the here-and-now anyway. It is stunning to comprehend the level of strength it takes to do what she does. Every. Day. Are you bowing down to Royalty as I am?
“But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.”
~Jack Kerouac, On The Road
Well, my Rebel Royals, this is where we’ll stop for today. I wanted to dip my toe in the water before jumping back in, cannon-ball style, and I thank you for holding the space for me to do so. We have so many more amazing adventures to review together the Hunger Games movie and seeing Marcus Foster live (tomorrow night) notwithstanding… I still want to discuss with you all the implications behind the case study we approached last time, about Empathy Erosion and the desensitization to humanity as discussed in the last Musings——>A Stew Review: Compassionate Beauty
Also, I so very much want to return to our roots, which includes the celebratory highlight of a new Featured Royal Rebel. I want to talk about and give the mad props deserved to a brilliant, important English bloke. You may know of him already. . .
And we will discuss and rejoice over our Rebel Queen’s continued, brilliant courageousness …Because she is The Fairest Of Them All. She consistently lights the path for Others to tread.
I look to her, and you to help me move towards what will be by honoring and foraging through what is. Because it’s how we roll. #OtherOn
We are Other.
Kristen is Other.
Others choose to go through What Is.
Embrace your Other.
* * *
QUESTION: What were your thoughts on Paris Part Deux, and the On The Road trailer? Can you recall a time when you withdrew from a stressful situation only to realize that pushing through the discomfort and fear was the most direct and honest path to recovery?
A/N: Now is when I convey my gratitude to you for the time you’ve spent in perusing my ramblings, if you indeed made it to the end of this somewhat erratic post. THANK YOU. Though I’ve been on the periphery and quieter than usual, I am here. See you very, very soon. Always, KJ
VIPs in my LIFE and for this post to be possible:
@Kate_Suena @DeeDreamer16 @maybeimrivers @robkris13
My Always-Constant CyberSisters and Readers
2. Visit one of my bestie’s beautiful, beautiful book blog. And come get lost in it with me. Love you, Katie. And Thank You. For everything.
Today’s Musical Playlist:
Joyful Girl (live) ~ Ani DiFranco
First Breath After coma ~ Explosions in the Sky
Lullaby ~ Sia
Fires ~ Shady Bard