Le Chagrin

I just ran across what I find to be a stunning collection of artistic erotic images (pretty porn), on a Tumblr blog called “Le Chagrin”.

This site is decidedly NSFW, so don’t click if your boss is standing behind you – http://chagrin.tumblr.com/

What I like about this site – aside from just pure hotness – is that it’s a completely non-themed collection defined by one thing; beauty. Every single picture I’ve seen is artistically gorgeous. But it doesn’t suffer from the tendency some ‘artistic’ erotica sites have, of mistaking demure and soft-core for artistic; many of these pictures are profoundly hard-core (there’s plenty of fucking, plenty of pegging, plenty of cock-sucking and come). But there’s also a lot of romantic imagery; that’s one of the things I love. There are photos of couples kissing, embracing, and even sleeping.

There are images where the erotic content is implied, and many where it’s front and center. The selections below are chosen because they’re all work safe, but trust me, the first page you hit from the link above is a profoundly hot pegging image, so don’t be fooled by these.

(Thanks to the beautiful and talented Monica for sending me a link to this site)

land of pretty waitresses

Victoria, BC; land of pretty waitresses.

I know. It sounds funny. But oddly, it’s true. I’ve been on Victoria Island for roughly 30 hours. That’s a dinner, a breakfast, a lunch, and another dinner.

It’s not just that every waitress who’s waited on me has been unusually pretty. It’s that every waitress I’ve seen has been unusually pretty. And not just the waitresses; this includes busers and hosteses. Hell, there are even pretty waiters.

What do they do, farm them? Is it the water? That clear Canadian air?

At lunch today, the waitress who served us looked every-so-slightly like Christine Taylor. She was distractingly cute. The woman who seated us at breakfast, a dark-haired british girl, had a sort of school-teacher, marion-librarian look, like she she had a little bit of wild thing lurking behind a a professional demeanor. And she wasn’t even the prettiest of a staff of pretty girls (and boys) at Canoe Brew Pub.

This afternoon, I sat in my hotel’s lounge watching a bartender and cocktail waitress who could have been sisters; olive-skinned and exotic, and even when I pictured them together.

Even the girls who waited on us tonight at the snack-shack at Butchart Gardens were cute as hell; one corn-fed, plump and sweet, the other skinny and pale with way too much back eye makeup.

The killer, though was Saturday night’s dinner. The hostess looked like a twenty-year-old Mira Sorvino, in a dress that came about as close to naked as one can be and still work in public. This girl was so stunningly pretty I had trouble paying attention to my meal, ordering the wrong dish and forgetting (three times) what I meant to order to drink. I can’t remember a thing I ate, and was almost completely unable to maintain a thread of conversation.

Her dress was made of some sort of clingy white jersey; cut loose in the front, it had the effect, almost, of some greco-roman toga. But when back-lit, the dress went nearly see-through, with that light-between-the-thighs thing that makes me insane. When she turned, the back managed to fit her hips and butt like a second skin, revealing the color, and every seam (and the exact location of the label) on her lacey thong.

This is the kind of girl who should be getting paid to take off her clothes; the fact that she’d look amazing out of them could not have been more clear. Every single time she walked though the dining room, I lost track of my meal. She’s the kind of girl who’s going to stick in my head for a while and might turn up, some day, as a character in some piece of fiction.

Is this some secret, that Victoria has cornered the market on beautiful women? Is this where they’re harvested, then taken to L.A. to be starved and then plumped with silicone and then stiffened with botox?

Or is it some plot among the restaurant managers of Victoria, to hire uniformly stunning people to serve food?

I will say, Victoria has turned into a very cool city. I Haven’t been here in twelve or thirteen years, and in that time, it’s grown up a lot. There are many, many new buildings, and many old ones are currently closed for upgrade and renovation. But what’s cool about it, now, is that it’s managed to preserve a european sense, while also developing a very organic sort of hipness. This is what Seattle must have been like twenty or thirty years ago, what I think Portland was like ten years ago. It’s a city that hasn’t quite been discovered as a hipster scene, but is heading there, in it’s own way rather than because people are coming here seeking a scene.

Thirteen years ago when I visited Vancouver I thought, I could see living here. Today, I thought the same thing about Victoria.

Of course, both trips I’ve had the luck of unusually good weather; both times, temps in the high eighties with clear skies, then gentle night-time breeze. I might have a different opinion if I’d been here in February or so.

But as with every trip I’ve ever taken to the Pacific Northwest, I look around and think, yeah, I see why people leave California for this place. Particularly this month when California has the Stench of fire and brimstone in the air.

Hollywood and Spike heels

I’m staying for a couple of nights in gray, rainy hollywood.

I’d like to say that I’m here for the oscars, which are this coming Sunday and for which several blocks of hollywood blvd are blocked off; but no, I’m here instead to enjoy a wednesday evening show of Wicked (which in itself is a good thing)

I’m staying in hollywood’s gothic glory, the Chateau Marmont (or ‘chateau marmot‘ as my mother and and children would have it); site of John Beluhi’s tragic death, and setting of episodes of Entourage, recordings by Anthony Kiedis and Ville Valo, and where bad girls like Britney and Lindsay get themselves in trouble.

It’s a hotel with a past; the kind of hotel where people look at you as you walk in and out to see if you’re anyone. It’s been here since the early part of the century, and one cannot help but wonder, who else has slept in this room.

I’d like to say I’ve been in the bar, drinking with people who make too much money and spend too much of it on cosmetics and cars; but alas, most of my day I’ve been working, solving all the problems that followed me out of work on a tuesday. I’m not out long enough to have actually nailed anything down, as I did when I went to fiji five years ago, nor even long enough that I needed to tell anyone but my boss; so of course my phone has rung a dozen times, and in the hour I spent in the air with my iPhone switched off, I got 10 emails I needed to answer and a half dozen texts.

Still; working in a king size bed at the Chateau beats being in my office.

It wasn’t all work today; I managed a very fine lunch and several martinis at one of my favorite restaurants, Musso and Frank; the kind of place that reeks of ambiance, the kind of place where cops and writers, stars and moguls, politicians and gangsters, strippers and hustlers, tourists, locals and as-beens all step in for a perfectly grilled steak and an ice cold martini. It’s the kind of place where the characters in my head meet and talk, brood, or seduce one another.

I also managed to have one of those moments I’m prone too, where I encounter a woman who gets into my head in a huge way.

Hollywood blvd is lined with sleaze, and I mean that in both the very best and very worst way. Cheap, glittery sex stores, tee-shirt emporiums, the kind of shops that have name brands on everything they knock off. The too-beautiful and the broken down, the very rich and very poor, the shiny and the tarnished meet in mid-block, the lines where one becomes the other never close to sharply defined. This means it’s both a great place to shop for things you can’t get anywhere else, and a great place to watch people.

Case in point; where else could one find, not one, but many places to buy thigh-high, florescent green plastic platform boots with seven-inch heels – in a men’s size fourteen.

These sorts of stores draw me in; places that sell cheap leather and the sort of lingerie you’d only see on someone paid to wear it, or someone who can’t tell the difference between whore-hot and whore-sleazy. The sort of stores where the shoe soles are not made for walking, but for pointing toward the ceiling.

We were browsing in one such store – my youngest daughter in a frenzy of fashion-shopping, finding the innocence and charm in all that vinyl, my older one trying to look pointedly away from all that funk and sleaze only to find it’s every single place she can think of to look.

I was admiring a rack of stainless-steel-and-leopard-print stiletto heels (wondering vaguely what they’d feel like walking up and down my spine) when I noticed a very pretty young woman trying on a pair of shoes in the back of the store.

Now, I’m not really a foot fetishist; I love women’s feet in that I love every single thing about women’s bodies. Feet are important because they are connected to ankles, calves, knees, and on up, every inch being something love. But – well, some things make a fetishist of me, at least for a moment.

She was trying on the sort of shoes no one – at least no one I’ve ever known – actually wears; this sort of thing.

“Those shoes look incredibly good on you,” I said to her, as she got up and wobbled across the store.

“Thanks; I don’t know if I can walk in them though.”

I looked at her feet, at the six inch spiked heels, at the impossible arch of her instep in them, like a body stretched just short of breaking on a rack; that perfect point of tension that’s just short of too much.

She had tattoos on her feet and ankles, lovely curves to her calves, and these shoes did things to her legs and feet that would break hearts and start wars.

I couldn’t take my eyes off her.

“They’re not really made for, you know, walking,” I said.

She smiled at me in the mirror, then went on practicing walking in them, wobbling around and looking at herself. I helped her look.

I made a vague attempt to leave her alone, but found couldn’t. “They just look make your feet look incredibly sexy,” I said, and she smiled and thanked me; it was the kind of smile I’ve seen before from women who make a living being sexy, but it was also real, with barest touch of self-consciousness about a compliment from a stranger.

“I’m used to platforms,” she said. And I began to visualize tucking dollar bills in her g-string.

I had to walk away from her, my kids interrupting me before I could say more; I was going to ask to see her tattoos, to give me a chance to look at her feet some more; maybe ask her is she was a dancer, and more importantly (since I already knew the answer to that), where she danced.

I lost the moment though, and when I looked back at her she’d decided against the shoes, walking away with empty hands and flip-flop clad feet.

“I don’t think I could walk in them,” she said to me, as se left the store.

“too bad,” I said to her back. Too damned bad.

I was distracted for a good hour, thinking about it, as I found Musso and Frank and ordered lunch; my mind filled, not with images of her hips, or thighs, or face or breasts, as would usually be the case after such a moment, but with images of her feet. I could not get them out of my mind.

Fetishes are funny things.