We don’t ever have anybody spend the night

June 26th, 2008

I lapped up the Vanity Fair piece on Angelina Jolie a week or so ago on a beach read, aroused by all the things she tells us she would do and never do, all the kisses she would never tell, how she lives a life of such abundant self selection, the names, the nationalities, the dominions, the husbands and the other women’s husbands, the ideologies and armbands, the provocations, the missions, the flights, the media chase and the white-knuckle escapes that always trigger the chase. Malibu, France, Prague, New Orleans and bitty Smithville, Texas, the whole world falls in full occupation to the nannies and tutors, the Gulfstream refugees that camp and decamp, the multicultural staff, the Vietnamese nanny, and the sweet Congolese Belgian lady and the girl from the States who is so good at art programs, the bodyguarded birthday parties and black Mercedes Happy Meals, the appetites, the sex, the lips, the body art, the tease always the tease of radical normal, the normal so normal that it proves the high-priced architecture, the elaborate construction and reconstruction, the punch list and the circus foreman who keeps the colossus standing, and then she says something about where she draws the line on hired help, something that echoes back a whole week later to this morning, while I’m chopping fruit and feeding the dog in my stinky sweats and I hear her say,

“We don’t ever have anybody spend the night.”


  1. Strikes me as the opposite of leaving the door open for Elijah, or anyone that might be him… which is to say everybody.

    Fantastic, sweeping list, by the way!. (And we all know how you love sweeping!)

    Comment by Jena Strong — June 26, 2008 @ 4:42 pm

  2. I am getting closer to the day when I will be able to make it through a magazine article uninterrupted.

    And it was a great list!

    Comment by Kristin H. — June 26, 2008 @ 5:33 pm

  3. Just read that article an hour ago. Uncanny!

    So many things revealed/not revealed by those luscious lips of hers…

    I wish for once a celeb mom would, instead of spinning that tired old line about how “normal” their lives are, just come out and say, “I’m living a fabulous, fabulously complicated life and my kiddies are hangin’ on tight as I take them on this ride…”

    Or something.

    Comment by Lana — June 26, 2008 @ 5:47 pm

  4. Oh, she’ll have people spending the night once those twins are born. Believe me. If I could have paid people to spend the night I would have … I’ll have to check this out. I’m a bit obsessed with her/them. Wait, or am I? It’s hard to tell. Do I seek news out about her or is it just so prevalent on the news? lol

    Comment by Shawn — June 26, 2008 @ 6:53 pm

  5. HA! Can you imagine?!

    Comment by Catherine — June 26, 2008 @ 7:16 pm

  6. One must draw the line somewhere!

    Comment by Mama Zen — June 26, 2008 @ 7:38 pm

  7. I read that article. What does that do to a person’s thinking that worlds of people will move for just a glimpse of them? Lucky her, I suppose? Not everyone can perfect the art of becoming unreal.

    Comment by mapelba — June 26, 2008 @ 8:56 pm

  8. karen,
    i wanted to tell you thank you. i just finished your book and promptly bought myself a copy (i first borrowed it from the library). i will forever include this in all my baby shower gifts.

    thank you for guiding me through a wonderment of emotions. i went from feeling not worthy and guilty at the beginning to feeling safe and restful at the end. i worried you were silently judging my choices (tho we’ve never met) then realized i was the one judging.

    i take comfort that your thoughts exist leading me back to the pages of your moments when i have mine.

    thank you.

    Comment by latisha — June 26, 2008 @ 9:13 pm

  9. Hmm – well it seems some of us work during those wee hours and require hired help during that time. I guess that makes me more fabulous that Ms. Jolie – yes? :o)

    Comment by Shalet — June 26, 2008 @ 9:44 pm

  10. i just heard that she and her man have been offered 15 million dollars for the first pic of their twins.


    i must go order your book this minute. now THAT will be a luscious read!

    Comment by kyra — June 26, 2008 @ 9:55 pm

  11. i love that about you, karen, that you read the same celebrity journals as i do, but i love that you are able to somehow turn it all into a lesson.
    or at least something we can all laugh at together.

    Comment by Holly — June 26, 2008 @ 10:57 pm

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