Friday, August 29, 2008


Our last day here. We spend the day on a walk through the woods with one of FB's aunts. We return to the house and have time to make one last dinner before departing back to Paris. FB's Dad mentions making an omelet and doing a simple dinner with bread and cheese before we leave. I think "GREAT!" and then notice no one is making the move to actually cook the omelet. FB's Mom has departed earlier and I wonder who will actually be doing the cooking in her place. And then it dawns on, maybe I should try and make the omelet?

I have not cooked one single thing for FB's family yet, being intimidated and overwhelmed by French cooking as I am and having FB's Mom always making me delicious meals, it just never fell to me to do any cooking. So here it is. The chance to do something. I did not grow up cooking and I only recently started experimenting and cooking in any real sense. So far, FB has been the main one to try my various forays into the kitchen experimenting with recipes and ideas. I knew the moment I took the eggs out, there was some sort of unspoken pressure to prove that I could, in fact, actually cook. My palms starting sweating but my dear friend Adrianne stood in the kitchen with me and calmed me while my thought train went berserk.....

OK OK OK OK OK eggs. It's just EGGS. You KNOW how to cook eggs. Eggs are your favorite. You cook eggs ALL THE TIME. But the Julia Child book said how important being able to cook basic eggs is and oh my god, what did she say to do? OH my god, I don't even know where the pans are. OK OK OK OK here are the pans. Um, this one looks too big....uh, I think. Well, like, I would NEVER cook my own eggs in this pan. OK OK OK pretend no one else is here. You are just cooking your own eggs. OK this other pan is oval shaped. What's it used for? I don't know. I guess you could cook eggs in it. No, you couldn't. Yes, you could. OK, if no one was here, what pan would you cook them in? DEFINITELY the oval pan. OK, crack the eggs.

ME: OK OK, I am using six eggs. There are six people, one egg each, right? I mean, the pan couldn't fit more than six or it'll be too full, right? What do you think?
ADRIANNE: Yeah totally. Sounds great.
ME: (frantically searching the fridge) OK, there are tomatoes. If they have thyme, I could do tomatoes and thyme.
ADRIANNE: They totally have thyme.
ME: OK OK OK OK, but wait....they are French people. Do they like thyme and tomato? Shit, I don't know....what if it freaks them out? What if they hate these flavors? What if they never eat tomato and thyme on eggs? I would put the tomatoes and thyme in at the end but wait, is that right? What if there is a better way to add them? What if they think it sucks? I don't know what to do. OK OK OK I'll make it plain. That's the safest choice. Just a plain egg omelet. Just salt and pepper...or wait, no salt? Let them salt it at the table? Yeah, just pepper. I think. I mean, I don't know. OK OK OK OK wait, salt and pepper them. I would do that anyway. OK, I'll salt and pepper them.....right?
ADRIANNE: Totally......maybe put some cream in them?
ME: Yeah, yeah, yeah....cream. Cream is good. Who doesn't like cream?
(heart starts racing and I choke back a panic attack)

I search for olive oil but only come up with a mystery bottle of some sort of oil. Oh my god, what if it's weird oil? I have no idea what this oil is and I always think everything smells like oregano anyway soooo I don't know, I don't know, I don't know what to do......OK OK OK....screw it.....just use the oil. Done.

I try and turn the stove top on but I can't figure it out so FB's Dad lights it for me. Great. I already have one retard point. I put it fairly low and as the pan heats up, I add the eggs. FB's aunt walks by, proclaims the flame is too low, turns it way up and leaves. Uh......OK. Does that mean she is cooking the eggs? Um, OK, guess not. Great. So now I have eggs cooking faster than I ever would and now I REALLY start sweating. Panicked, I take the eggs off the heat and go to my special place where no one is there and I am only cooking eggs for myself. With tunnel vision, I make an open faced omelet, sprinkle salt and pepper on top and serve it in wedges. I have to say, it looks very pretty and as we sit at the table to eat, FB's Dad comments on what a good looking omelet I made. And it tasted great too. I breathe a sigh of relief. I passed the egg test. Next up...Bœuf Bourguignon. :)

It was truly four days of magic and I could not have asked for a better place to shoot a video. Merci to the Boulés for making two American artists very very happy......xo.....

Thursday, August 28, 2008


I had zero idea of how many animals would make their way into this music video. A couple weeks ago I half seriously asked FB's Mom if she could cook some sort of animal and keep the head on it so we could possibly use it in the video shoot. She has taken me absolutely serious and got a rooster from the farm next door to make a Coq Au Vin. She has told the farmer to preserve the head and as she takes a large bag out of the freezer, I shriek in surprise as I see two huge frozen rooster heads, the blood still dried on the necks. Adrianne and I burst into fits of amazed laughter as we thank her for such an incredible addition. A random thought that PETA officially would NOT approve of this video crosses my mind.

We shot a scene using the head with the cooked meat behind it and then sat down to eat my new favorite dish...Coq Au Vin. Holy crikes, can someone say DELISH??? Food for art and the art of making and eating food, all in same day. Merci mon petit coq, you were wonderful and delicious.....

Though warned of the 100 bats in the attic, we nervously decide to shoot anyway in the run down house next to the chateau. After mistaking a salamander for a viper and shrieking "OH MY GOOOOOD!!!!", I enter a dim lit room, close the door and wait for Adrianne's cue to enter from the next room. I suddenly hear "OHHHHH....OHHHHH....OOOOOOOHHHHHHH!!!!!" I desperately hope that her shouts are because she thinks the light is so good. Please oh, please.
OK OK OK OK OK OK NOT panic....DO NOT PANIC......walk out the door......OK OK OK OK....just walk quieeeeetly through the room and out the door....OK OK OK OK OK NOOOOOT PANIC....down the stairs....OK OK OK OK...keep moving....keep moving.....

We make it outside and after our shaking stops, we decide that maybe the rest of the day we should shoot outside instead. We enter the apple trees....

Climbing a tree in a ball gown proves harder than I thought. Nerves are shot from the bat terror in the broken down house. My makeup keeps smearing, I am sweating and after seven hours of shooting, all I want are my Converse sneakers and a cheeseburger. We decide instead of climbing, I will simply crouch down and pretend to climb some low branches. I kneel down and put my face to the ground when I see one, then two, then ten giant slugs creeping their slimy way around my sandaled feet, my dress and now my face. Standing up I declare I am officially done for the day. Nature can keep it's creeping and flying beasts. I need a glass of wine. Immediately.

FB and his friend have gone fishing for the day and return with enough fish to feed six people for dinner. I watch as he deftly chops the heads off and guts fish after fish, all the while thinking "Um, you were like, totally CITY when I met you...". I had NO idea about his livin' off the land skills and I unsuccessfully try and silence my peals of urban girl horror/laughter as each fish is chopped up, gutted and thrown into the frying pan right before my eyes. Hot. And they were deliiiiiicious.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


I am not from the country. I have never spent time in the countryside. A salamander will send me screaming for safety and a bat could potentially send me into a coma. The meat I ate never had a head on it and the very thought of camping sends me into a Blair Witch terror.

I am told to keep the windows closed at night because there is a large wasp nest in the chimney. Uh, ok. And if you listen, you can hear them. I listen and um yyyyyes, I can hear them. I am then told that these are not regular sized wasps. They are in fact, REALLY BIG wasps. In my mind I try and picture what really big means and I think maybe half an inch and shrug. Whatevs. Then I am shown to window where outside, drawn to light, I see two of them. My shrug turns to horror as I see the size of the wasps. They fact, REALLY HUGE. Having an overactive imagination, I immediately see graphic and violent pictures of myself being covered in them....arms flailing, running for my life and I am suddenly thankful I do not live in frontier times because I would be dead by now from heart failure.

A wasp is noticed flying around the dinner table and after a battle by FB's father involving a broom, a knife and finally a lethal dose of bug killer, the wasp is pronounced dead.

FB and moi are standing outside in the dark looking at the stars. The Milky Way shines bright and Jupiter beams in the dark night. My thoughts wander and I feel my nerves quietly calming.

FB: You know, those wasps can kill you.
ME: (sigh) OK, thanks.
FB: Seriously, if they get the right vein...
ME: Yeak OK, I get it. THANKS.
FB ....and they sting it in the right place, you can die from....
ME: OK! YES! I GET IT! Look, we are OUTSIDE and I am trying to relax here so can you knock it off with the YOU CAN DIE/KILLER WASPS talk?
FB: Sure. (pause) But seriously, you could die. I'm just saying.

At that point, we hear a sudden buzzing in the air and faster than I can say KILLER WASPS, FB runs off like a shot in the dark. Gone. Like a flash. I have never in my life seen him move so fast and as I run to the door to go back inside, I wonder how far exactly FB is planning on terror running into the night........


Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Adrianne Jorge, one of my amazing film director friends came to France to shoot my next music video for Go Away. As we drove up the driveway to the chateau in Burgundy, she muttered "O......M......G" from the backseat. A smile set in across both our faces as the endless location possibilities unfolded themselves before our eyes.

Monday we embarked on three days of heaven in the middle of France. It was sunny, beautiful and warm. While we ran around the various rooms and garden shooting, we were fed the most delicious local dishes with farm fresh meat and freshly caught fish. It was.....simply......frickin'.........AWESOME.

FB's parents opened their doors for us and invited us to dream the days away......

Monday, August 25, 2008


Woke up this morning from a bender that started off a week ago when a friend asked if I wanted to come out and research some restaurants and bars she is writing about for a guidebook. Um, let me think.....YES. Enter another New York friend in town visiting me and another one leaving in a few days and what do you get? Party train central.

The train stopped abruptly about six minutes ago upon realizing I am leaving in an hour to go to Bourgogne to shoot another music video and I haven't packed yet or thought about anything like wardrobe or makeup or I don't know....washing my hair for a week now. Scratch scratch. Um....oops.

Seriously. Pull yourself together. Wipe off last week's makeup and start acting like a frickin' professional. You can pass out in your trailer between takes but at least make it to the set on time.

A bientot!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Myspace, Youtube, Facebook,,'s bloody exhausting to keep up a virtual world. After spending a week holed up in my makeshift office (a.k.a. my bed as it's the only piece of furniture we own) trying to add "friends", "meet" people and mostly sift through bad band after bad band, I jerked myself out of myspace migraine to go run some errands. The joy of being a Gemini is that pissiness never lasts long with me. I wandered off down the Seine with Dr. Dre's The Chronic blasting in my headphones and a smile on my face...."Swing down sweet chariot stop and...let me riiiiiiiide."
Hell yeah.

My French seemed to recognize me again today. I don't know if it was the smile on my face but everyone seemed to want to talk to me. I had a full ten minute discussion with the paint guy about New York bars, I gave a French woman directions (IN FRENCH!) and an old man behind me on the ice cream line told me he knew I wasn't French because French women don't wear purple pants. He said he liked them because they reminded him of the flowers in his yard. That especially made me smile as I said "AWWWWWWW!"

I wandered back home along the Seine, blasted the soundtrack to The Umbrellas Of Cherboug and did my own little dance across Pont Neuf bridge. Note to self: Take it to the streets more often. People are super nice.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Is that a crab in your pants or are you just pissy?

My one music and life goal since I moved to Paris is plain and simple.
Become HUGE in France.
I always aim high. REALLY high.

I'm pissy today. Barbie Dream Life Music Vacation is not all fun and games, as many people assume. If my only goal was to be a stoner musician in Paris who hangs out all day "jamming" with myself and the voices in my head.....well, that would be easy. Check. Music Stoner Barbie wants to sit at her piano and play songs all day and drink wine and make some more CDs and music videos with her friends but Business Barbie has to butt her stupid jerk pink face in sometimes with her high pitched chipper voice and pre-programmed "LET'S MAKE A SPREADSHEET!". Business Barbie frowns, tugs at her pink skirt and makes Music Stoner Barbie get the hell off the piano to keep working to put her music out there into the world like a good Saleswoman Barbie in a smart two piece pantsuit with a HI! I'M BARBIE, WANT TO HEAR A SONG? nametag splashed across her shiny bright vest.

Sometimes I really want to tell Business Barbie to go fuck herself.
But I can't.
Because if I don't do the following, no one will.......

Here's what I've been doing all day every day while most of France takes a month long nap......I run my record label, Ex Best Friend Music. Usually from my bed with my phone, piles of papers and CDs spread all over. I update my six websites, I field music licensing requests, I phone conference with my lawyer, I make club and press contact spreadsheets, do the booking, deal with running a company for my music publishing, send out mailings, work with the graphic designer on my website launch, update my accounting spreadsheet, fix a tax problem with New York State (cause it's so easy and just so much fun), set up a French company (cause it's so much easier and even that much MORE FUN), design business cards and everything else that has to do with the business of launching a serious music career here this fall.

Sometimes it is like sticking forks in my eyes. Especially the "getting yourself out there" marketing part that sometimes makes me feel like a broken record when all I would rather be doing is writing more music and playing more shows that magically appear and all I have to do is show up and magically everyone already knows who I am and I have a magic fanbase already magically there.

Sigh. Not today.
Today me and BIZ Barbie are BFF.

Yeah, I heard you. Let's go.

Monday, August 18, 2008


I don't know what it is about living in Paris, but I have had it with people knocking on my door with a variety of disconcerting situations. I am a calm and peaceful musician who keeps a quiet home but in the seven months I've been in Paris, the ONLY times I have had an unexpected visitor it has been.....
KNOCK KNOCK, it's the police!
KNOCK KNOCK, it's a lawyer!
KNOCK KNOCK, you're evicted!
KNOCK KNOCK, it's some official looking guy and I have no idea what you're saying!


What happened to KNOCK KNOCK, here's a present!
Or KNOCK KNOCK, I'm your new neighbor and here's a pie!
Or flowers?
Or I won the lottery?
Or sign this petition?

Doorbell rings in our new apartment. My stomach does a triple axel as I vomit out....
What NOW? Am I murder suspect? We just GOT here! I haven't even finished painting!
My instinct to clean kicks in as I run hyperventilating for the sponge and soapy water. FB answers the door and engages in what is seemingly an endless conversation with two men. I furiously focus my terror into last night's dishes and die inside as I wait for a search and seizure. I try helplessly to understand the conversation but the fight or flight (or clean) instinct clearly overpowers French as all my mind can do is put "OH MY GOD!" on an ever-increasing volume loop. FB returns and calmly explains it was the EDF and they had come to turn off all our electric.
Just add "KNOCK KNOCK, no lights for you!!" to our list of friendly visitors.
Evidently they got the wrong floor and shut off ours instead of the downstairs neighbors.
Thanks for the joke, EDF.

You know, one of these days I'm going to actually get a flower delivery and begin to erase my Pavlov's Dog terror of anyone at my front door in France = RUN. I unpacked my ninja mask this week so until those flowers get here, I am answering all future inquiries like this.......CAN I HEEEEEEEEELP YOU?

Thursday, August 14, 2008


Once again, the amazing Corey Tatarczuk surprised me with another beautiful video for one of my songs. This one floated its way into my inbox and made me smile. In French.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


I unloaded my well-worn French verb conjugation book out of my bag. My dictionary I happily kissed goodbye to. I shut off any notion of knowing French whatsoever and boarded a plane to New York where I happily spent two New York weeks talking non-stop and joining in every conversation I possibly could for as long as humanly possible.
It. Was. Glorious.

As I boarded the flight back to Paris I got a sinking feeling as the flight attendant made the announcements in French. My babbling bubble burst as I realized I understood nothing. Maybe the plane is on fire. Or the emergency exits are located in aisle 16. Or I should stow my portable electronics. Should I fasten my seatbelt or is the flight six hours and twenty minutes? Who knows? Certainly not me.
Oh yeah.
I put my best foot forward into CDG, took the train back into the city ready to say "HIEEEEEEE, I AM BAAAACK!!!!!!"
(insert cricket sounds)

When I left Paris, she was still open. She offered me baked goods, wine and green markets close by. She was hot and irresistible. But when I returned, my brain rested and ready again to understand, she had left. Closed up shop for the rest of the summer. And the nights have turned an early fall cold like a slap that says "You want New York? Go ahead. I could care less about you cause I am OUTTA HERE."
Paris, wait! Where'd you GOOOOOOO????

And for those who stayed, yes, I am back to explaining myself again with the vocabulary of a three year old. Embarrassed the first night all over again to order my own dinner with authority, disoriented again to lose the entire subject of the conversation and frustrated again not to communicate with a full language at my fingertips.
I feel like the lover who left only to return to an empty house and the housecat asking for an explanation.
Ah Paris, you sneaky girl, you.

But it's OK. I will wait and she will come back to me. In the meantime I will learn some new words for her return and enjoy the quiet of a sunny afternoon in the park.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


Get me around my talented friends and inevitably, we make stuff.
This is my dream life New York vacation.

ME: "Dude, I need some videos asap for my album."
COREY: "Wanna make one today?"
ME: "Yeah sure. That sounds cool."

A weekend in the country with my girlfriends and 48 hours's done.
Surround yourself with talented, driven people.
Merci Corey Tatarczuk for directing, shooting and editing the first of many ....