Barbidoesmiami

How to Stay Sane in the City of No Shame


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a night with my Dutch landlord… aka DJ Tiesto…

still at home with Tiesto's super-sized photo...

In case you didn’t know, our landlord is DJ Tiesto, and our landlord performed at LIV the disco @ the Fontainebleau last night, actually this morning.

“I go on at 1 am,” he e-mailed, “till whenever…”

So we took a mega nap, woke at 11 and got done up. I knew the drill, after 8 months of Miami I’ve learned that Saturday night on the beach means a dress that ends at the crotch and stiletto’s that can skewer a rat without anyone noticing it stuck in the arch of the heel. I complied, included ample make-up  but went without my implants and the mandatory ironed blond hair. Would I get in? I was on the list. On the  VIP, Tiesto guest, A-list.

Still, the big black bouncer made me feel like shit as in the minority revenge dish best served cold, like really stone cold….

“Stay there”, he barked as I moved forward,  an inch past some imaginary line. “But, but..” He ignored me as I repeated Tiesto and my name in one sentence an embarrassing amount of times, while several  younger, tight skirted, ironed blondes squeezed past, pressing their hard, high and  large tits against me as if to say ” if you aint got these you ain’t goin’nowhere, bitch.”

But I got in. Eventually. So did husband. We got in. So there.

And it felt great. I’d taken half a Vicodin (what else are they good for) so everything was perfect.

“Ultimate 21st century kitsch”, husband said, “I love it.”

“Me too,” I said, looking around the space; chandeliers the size of UFO’s, almost naked waitresses balancing bottles of champagne decorated with sparklers,  a flashlight, like a small dildo  clenched between their lips to light their path, the monotonous beat pounding my chest and confusing my own heartbeat in an exhilarating kinda way.

The space filled up. Blah looking guys in shirts worn open over their jeans, and thousands of girls in tiny dresses,  all dresses. Not skirts and tops, not shorts, not leggings. But dresses. Whilst high I imagined doing a collection of dresses called LIV and selling them at the Fontainebleau store. Even with a hangover, the next day, this seems like a good idea. Like where do they get all those sexy dresses? Tight. Low cut. Sleeveless, strappy, strapless, hugging, clinging stretching with lots of bling, jewels, chains, buckles and sequins, in every color.

To get noticed in this sea of sexy the pro-dancers wore nothing. What else could they do? They wore bondage that passed for more than plain nudity and girated and pulsated on their small pedestals as if to show the other bitches who was hottest.

Like, mirror mirror on the wall who’s the gyratest of them all?

So finally Tiesto appeared on the stage. Unassuming,  not tall, not short, not gorgeous, not ugly. Just a blond guy from Holland in a striped Gap Tee and a smile that tried to please . The crowd went nuts. The beat amped up. Men holding poster board with giant letters pushed by. Girls hopped on the spot,  like  jumping beans, encased in their dresses.

T  I  E  S  T  O ….

I let go. I stopped watching and analyzing and judging, I just grooved. The music in tune with some ancient rhythm  in my DNA I too hopped and gyrated and danced on the spot, mesmerized by the light show, happy on scotch and chemicals, Tiesto took me off somewhere other than my mundaine mind.

Then, towards the end of his first set, as the naked dancers left the stage a happy guy leapt in their place.  He was a great dancer too, only heavily clad in a cool skinny suit and pork pie hat. The crowd cheered him on as he danced his heart out. Until. A large, a large pumped up security guy pounced him, slammed him to the ground, stepped on him and dragged him off the stage  so fast that the whole thing seemed surreal. Now I was paying attention again and I noticed the cordoned off areas around me and  people begging bouncers to be let in, as if here and there were two different experiences, like a better parallel Tiesto universe awaited on the other side of the black security tape.

I noticed Alastair shouting at the guard who’d dragged off  the happy dancer, “What did you get him arrested for? Having a good time in a disco?”

I tried to hang in my careless groovy state as I loitered up the stairs behind the stage, but a guard grabbed my arm and pushed me along,

“You cant stop here here,”  he said. “Why not?” I was still oblivious. “Its a rule,” he shouted. “Like Homeland Security?”I screamed back.

“Fuck this fascist shit,” Alastair said. “lets go home.”

So home we went and wondered what was up with the controlling “BlackWater” patrol  at a Miami Tiesto disco bash…

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barbi in love …

home?

Its a crazy mess inside my head.

Every For Sale sign becomes a For Rent sign, everywhere I drive I imagine living. I ponder the beach versus the mainland, Sobe versus Brickell, the Grove, Downtown, North Beach, Normandy Isle. I weigh ocean-front condo against a home with a yard against a community townhouse. Then I’m sure again that Aqua, where we now live is perfect, and that I should  find a  more affordable place here. I’m turning into a real estate catalog. Every Miami for rent three-plus bedroom now has a place in my mind. 95% is unaffordable and other the 5%  is too small for our five enormous personalities. If its true that you become what’s on your mind then I’ll be a condo soon ( a gorgeous large but cheap one).

Yes, yes, yes Iona got into DASH and our nine month escape from the winter has turned into something very different. Oh its life-changing,  our friends say. Hell yes.  Like how the fuck do I patch this one together. Didn’t we just built a huge beautiful house that I love  back in Milford? Wasn’t it the perfect place for us? Didn’t we create a balance between living, kids and work, lots of lovely friends, in a picture perfect village? Didn’t I say, when we moved in three years ago, it was great to know that we’d never have to move again?

sweet home

But no, we had to go and fall in love.

Suddenly Miami is the perfect place for us. We ALL fell in love with the palm trees, the beach, the bays and canals and swimming pools, the gardens and parks on every corner. Miami is crazy  cosmopolitan, its not a white American city.  Its Cuban and Italian and Jewish and Venezuelan and Chilean and its loud and a tad dangerous and  hot and sweaty and gritty and romantic and we want  it. We don’t want to flirt with it anymore, we want to get married and have babies. Well, maybe no more babies. But we want to look after our three baby girls, do whats best for them. And Iona is in love with DASH and Kiki and Leila are like Miami, wild and intense and engaging and a tad dangerous.

Husband and I? Don’t know. I’ve always been a sucker for moving. I left home in Amsterdam when I was seventeen. But my bag had been packed since I was ten. Not because I hated my life. I’ve never moved because I hate my life. Paris, Sydney, Melbourne, London, New York, Princeton, Milford, Miami,  I always moved because those places nurtered me enough to turn another corner and experience more, learn more, challenge myself more and expand. Its never personal. Its just who I am.

And husband? We’ll let him speak for himself. He loves to swim and his goal is to swim in every pool in Miami and write about it. I’ll say no more I’ll just send you links, after all he’s the seasoned writer in this house.

Meanwhile.

I’m sitting in front of this giant puzzle and all the pieces are still strewn in front of me. School, home, kids, husband, dog, renters,  friends, work and money. Money. Money. Money. Money. Money. Money. And Health Insurance.

And I’m going a little crazy…


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january 2010 sucked

OK. so. I havent blogged. Lamely I blamed it on the weather. And you must’ve been thinking that I was having such a fabulous party time that I just forgot about it. Of course  you weren’t thinking anything at all. Confession: I was getting into a daily drudge already, here on the beach, after four months. Maybe my lack of inspired blogging is evidence that after four months in a new city the baggage catches up. Like lost luggage it was delivered at my Aqua  front door, I signed for it, and there it it sat. Or maybe it was Santa who brought it. Christmas has a tendency to bring my old shit no matter where I am. So. I was stupid enough to open the old bags and take a rummage. See if there was anything I’d missed. I got hooked in. I did my thing. I lost my improved Miami self to an older more familiar me, one I truly thought I could leave behind. One part victim. One part bossy bitch. One part I’m getting the fuck out of here…

Not much humor in that baggage. Not much blogging inspiration.

So lets forget about January 2010. Relapse month.

Hey. Hi. How’ve you been? How was your January? Shitty too? Or do you, like a Hallmark card, get positive energy and inspiration from that brand-new- year thing? I wish I did. The downside of expectation gets me every time, just about around the fifth or sixth. but I wasn’t gonna talk about January…

Bye bye January. Hello February.

Top five good news things:

1.My mother is here. My own sweet, beautiful, eighty-two year old mom from Amsterdam arrived a few days ago. She flew from Schiphol to London, where she changed to Virgin, sat cramped for nine hours next to a man with halitosis and B.O., and like a hero, arrived here, in my new paradise home. It makes me happy. She completes me. Now I can show her all the things I told her about in my mind over the past four months, for real.

2.My agent sent back my last edit.Line edit and notes. And I finished the final draft of my novel. The BlackBerry Diet. More about that in future entries. Do you have any idea how long it takes to write a book? And the waiting for people to read it? Its teaching me about patience. Slowly, which I hate. Anyway keep your fingers crossed.

3. I am working with OCEANA, the largest international Ocean  Environmental advocacy group dedicated to protecting and restoring the world’s oceans, to introduce them to Miami and establish a fundraiser for them. I’m putting together, curating, a show which incorporates aspects of the ocean, then, now and in the future, through the work of photographers, artists who use pollution and repurposed garbage in their work, and local art students. It gets me connected with people here, brainstorm and be inspired.

4. Iona is applying to two local magnet art schools. DASH and New World. She’s worked on her sketchbook, portfolio and ten art pieces. Five paintings and five photographs. She is good. Seriously good and into it. I’m proud of her. If she gets accepted we may have to stay here. I think I like the idea…

5. The weather is better and Leila said:

Mommy, I like it when winter only lasts a week….