The Gonzo Diplomat

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Real American Idols

In Real American Idols on April 26, 2010 at 2:53 pm

Real American Idols: The Anti-hero, Steve McQueen.   

"I live for myself and I answer to nobody."

 Ali MacGraw – “I remember seeing him across the swimming pool and my knees were knocking. He radiated such macho energy. Men wanted to be like him. Uptight society ladies and biker molls wanted to be with him.”   

Donal Logue from The Tao of Steve – “Steve is the prototypical cool American male. He’s the guy on his horse, the guy alone. He has his own code of honor, his own code of ethics, his own rules of living. He never, ever tries to impress the women, but he always gets the girl.”   

Sheryl Crow – “Steve McQueen was from a time when you didn’t know every little dirty thing about our public figures. He and James Dean were very mysterious, archetypal American heroes.”   

I have never been the biggest Steve McQueen fan, but that does not deter me from the fact that he is a person who ignites great curiosity. When I was a kid I never watched many of his films, or could ever put a face to the name.  

The first time I saw Steve McQueen, whilst playing pool in a bar, he was on a poster staring ahead defiantly from the seat of his motorbike, next to a sign saying “Halt” and “Achtung”. Two warnings you can tell he was going to perceptibly ignore.   

The Great Escape

Achtung? Mein arsch!

 I started reading about the so called “King of Cool” during my late teens. The story of the dyslexic, partially deaf, Vietnam era anti-hero, the rebel who was spent his childhood in Indiana switching homes between his alcoholic mother and his uncle, fighting with his step-father and being sent to a Junior Boys School in Chino Hills, California.  He worked in a circus, he was a stunt man, a rebel, a gangster, a lumberjack, a racer and a marine during WWII.  

 As an actor, he became the highest paid movie star in 1974 and the films which most caught my eye were The Great Escape, The Thomas Crown Affair, and more importantly, Bullit.  

 Those are obviously a select few from the many films he did, but after all this is not a wikipedia entry, he also turned down many other films that would have further enhanced his cult status, like Apocalypse Now, Ocean’s Eleven, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, The French Connection or Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.  

Away from the movie spotlight, McQueen was reportedly an asshole but in the most charming way. He often seemed brash and self-absorbed, but it wasn’t always the case. McQueen was noted for his generosity, in particular with the reformatory wherehe had been as a teenager, where he often sent large supplies of products and attended visits. He was an avid racer, charmer, smoker, exerciser and drinker. A man of the era. He married three times and died in Chihuahua, Mexico, at the age of 50 after an operation to remove or reduce some tumours in his abdomen.  

 More info:  

 http://coolercinema.blogspot.com/2010/03/steve-mcqueen-blog-thon.html  

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_McQueen  

http://www.polyvore.com/dress_like_steve_mcqueen/set?id=1803200

Look like McQueen Let’s face it, resembling the essence of McQueen is quite a tough task. First of all, the attitude is something you cannot buy, and then there are things you simply cannot afford, like a vintage 1968 Mustang GT390. But then you can still get a tinge of his style, I do not recommend the gun though.  

1: A turtleneck. McQueen loved turtlenecks, not too bulky. (€70, Gant)

 2: Slim dark blazer, McQueen often wore corduroy.  

3:Wool trousers, Dark flatfront, not baggy. (€221 Versace Collection)  

4: Suede shoes.  (€150, J.Crew) or (€177 Grenson)  

5: Persol Sunglasses PO 0714 (€150)  

6: Gray sweatshirt, anywhere  

7: Grey cotton cardigan, (€259 Michael Bastian) or (€70 Zara)  

8: Flatfront Chinos (€50 Dockers)  

9: White Converse (€60)  

10:  Gulf Racing Jacket  

11. Dark Blue Jeans (€80 Abercrombie and Fitch)  

12: Lambskin Leather gloves  

Example:

Cord Jacket

turtleneck

Abercrombie jeans

Dune Boots

Gulf Racing Jacket

Chinos

Monaco Vintage Le Mans watch

   

Persol sunglasses

Leather gloves

jacket, trust me he wore it often.

 

  

What Have We Come To?!

In Uncategorized on April 26, 2010 at 1:04 am

Zac Fox and Megan Efron.

My head seems to spinning as the clock nears the 40 minute mark on the treadmill, and the sound of my feet thumping against the conveyer belt is starting to create a monotonous pounding sensation in my skull, “I am in terrible form”, I bellow to myself, “what kind of fiend could let his body deteriorate in such fashion?!”.

 The people around me seem zombified, in several ways, you get the people moaning and dragging their feet, staring at the barbell with their mouths open, and then you get the people who are simply not there, unconnected to reality, just hammering away to the beat of their mp3 players and staring into the blankness ahead of them with slanted eyes.

 Bastards, I think, where the hell did I leave my mp3 layer? In what concealed and remote drawer did I deposit it in to waste and depreciate? These people around me, they have an escape channel, a small little device that keeps them sane and safe from all the profanities the less fortunate folk like me have to see in this damp and hellish gym.

 Ahead of me four television screens emit what can only be described as bullshit to the twenty or so lost souls riding static bicycles, running on treadmills and jogging on elliptical machines. I used to love MTV, and there are still things I like about it, but when the last six images I have seen have consist of Hugh Grant, Sarah Jessica Parker, Robert Pattinson, Kirsten Stewart, Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens, I feel like having serious talks with the company producers demanding an explanation for this sacrilege. Zak Effron is on again, he has Megan Fox next to her, they look the same, like clones or something, and it is almost scary. And when MTV finally resumes to its music videos, I find myself with Kesha.

And that is just too much.

***

 I hate sounding like an old man, Christ, I’m only twenty four years old, but it just gets to me, the standards and idols we have are just wrong. I don’t want be extremist and fall victim to some kind of Tyler Durdenesque seduction, but sometimes it just seems so much better.

This blog just contains some more ramblings, a cheap spin off , I suppose of my other blog, and I don’t care if I jump the shark or not, it looks like everyone ends up that way anyway. Here I will post a portrait of reality as I see it, with the people I choose to admire and the events that concern or influence me. This is my Journalism, a refusal of the one my degree told me to be objective about, my feelings and my thoughts, with the surrealism that may come with it. Here are the remnants of my meagre existence and the hopes I have of building something better, here are my dreams, my present, my news, my gonzo chimera.