West End Blues

“Oh Jasmine, your country house is so beautiful!”

Jasmine French In Woody Allen’s 2013 film “Blue Jasmine” is a Disney princess in the pejorative sense…and a sort of golden creature in the kindest sense.

I think when a lot of people think of “rich people” in the upper-class they imagine someone like Jasmine. And, maybe if she had a tiara and a castle…well…she’d be what people think it is to be an actual princess.

Louboutins, the perfect Birkin and hair that’s so…utterly…breathtakingly perfect it challenges one to almost claim there’s scientific proof of God’s existence. And her engagement ring?!? Good golly… It was otherworldly.

“It’s like something you’d see in a movie!” exclaimed Augie upon entering her Park Avenue penthouse.

But jasmine was…a flower without a bed. She had never been firmly planted anywhere. And when her gig as the Stepford Wife for a wealthy white-collar criminal ended she didn’t know where to replant herself. Even her adopted family from childhood was unstable.

Still, Jasmine had innately good taste. She made wearing an oversized diamond seem appropriate through her innate appropriateness. Perhaps that shining, sleek and tranquil decency (?) was partially why her husband used her as his wife for as long as he did. She had none of the family to back-up her honor but all of the “class”.

Regardless, her life of elegant civic engagement, noblesse oblige, and almost excessive luxury was…grand. Extremely impressive. But, Manhattan can support and purifying that kind of abundance in a way that almost nowhere else does or can. Kind of perfect for Jasmine actually… That was her real home if she ever had one.


If you want to see how both lovely and miserable it must be to be a real princess perhaps Audrey Hepburn’s portrayal in “Roman Holiday” (1953) is a better bet. In that masterpiece a young princess literally runs away in the night from her duties as royalty to try to “find herself” and actually enjoy her life. I suspect that’s indicative of the sort of cloistered misery one lives with with being genuinely royal. And I’m sure it’s wonderful to be royal but maybe not in the way Jasmine’s life was… Maybe. *shrug* I wonder if Meghan the Duchess of Sussex has ever seen that film. And I mean that in a sincerely good and thoughtful way…

I suppose that does beg the question though of why any country would want a true hereditary monarchy but that’s such a profoundly difficult and deep discussion and I won’t attempt to do that in this post…

But I’ve never been a princess. I’ve also never been a flapper. A man. My experience on this Earth is limited just like everyone else’s is. When I discuss flappers and European Royalty I am speaking from either observation or from my fascination with history since childhood, subsequent study of it in college and continued fascination afterwards.

I do think it’s more than remotely possible I was a child in the 1920’s if I was reincarnated. I may have seen real flappers in person (even smelled them)… Perhaps I even wished I could be one. But, based on the spiritual research I’ve done (feel free to think that’s total nonsense if you want) I was too young. Again, I’m a Christian but I wonder sometimes if reincarnation was almost entirely written out of the Bible?

Anyway…that’s another very complex discussion. And let me be clear: Just because I don’t spell out everything I’m alluding to or mean all at once doesn’t show that I’m ignorant or unaware. I often say too little when I fear there’s too much to say well. It’s one of my weaknesses as a writer and communicator in general and I’m working on it.

I think I was possibly a professional dancer though (in musicals)… And maybe that’s my problem as a writer. I really just want to dance. Words come together to form thoughts and opinions so slowly and when something is very complex it can leave you feeling easily tongue-tied with frustration. It’s easy to cut thoughts short for the sake of emotional impact. Dancing lets me both feel and express in a more uninhibited way.

(In this life) When I was little I wanted dancing lessons but my mom felt it was in bad taste and dangerous. She worried I’d eventually want to model or do pageants or who knows what… And she didn’t want me to be taken advantage of. So I just twirled around our living room and changed outfits over and over and over again. Once I spun so fast that I twirled full force into the corner of our entertainment center and had to have stitches. I still have a scar.

But no, I’m not a princess now and never have been one. Or a flapper…

Do you know how much money Jasmine must have had to live a life like she did? How much of other people’s money? …Gosh. They must have had at least $100 million net. At least. Just her home on Martha’s Vineyard must have been worth around $20 million? Her penthouse another $20 to 30 million?


I’ve never personally been that rich dearies… Maybe a little aristocratic. Maybe upper class. But…I’ve never been…any sort of princess. *smile*

(Via Google Images)

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