THE IT: Lady Gaga’s Monster’s Ball

Giovanna Castiglione on why she loves Gaga (“so-so” Toronto concert and all).

We can say she will never replace Madonna, we can say she’s a sexy sight for sore eyes or that she’s trying too hard. We can say a lot of things, but the truth is that Lady Gaga is something new.

She revealed something old to originate something new, as far as “new-ness” goes. But as far as the bed she made, she sleeps in it and believes in what she’s selling and understands what being famous allows. Most of her songs are a complete joke and her bi-sexual reveals are much more than for shock value. She knows exactly what she did to the pop world—she popped it. Until she came up on the radar, the pop culture scene was nothing but indie cry babies and has-been hoochies.

The performance of her song “Speechless mashed up with Elton John’s “Your Song at the Grammys was a screaming success. Between her hat creations with Philip Treacy, the BlueWater comic book titled FAME and potential fragrance products with Coty, she’s climbing faster than most young pop stars have at this stage in the game. Her lyrics aren’t even trying to be something—they’re just honest. “Love it when you call me legs, in the morning buy me eggs. Watch your heart when we’re together. Boys like you love me forever.” She touches on the “men are the new women” notion that’s been rolling around ladies nights cocktail carts for awhile now. As far as I’m concerned, she perfected my idea of a strong woman: Men don’t get her and women want to be her. It’s fabulous.

The “Fame Monster” and all her following “little monsters” (as she refers to her fans) convened at the Air Canada Center on July 11th and 12th for Lady’s Monster Ball. If she hadn’t spoken candidly that night, I would have hated the concert. I thought the show was a bit tacky.

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THE BOULEVARDIER: Monkey moments

Photograph by Giovanna Castiglione.

You know that things have changed in your life when you find yourself being groomed by that special someone. Yeah, that National Geographic-Mutual of Omaha-BBC guy with the Shakespearean voice monkey moment.

Snow drifts down over the natural hot springs, steam rises along the ice-crusted water’s edge, and the camera pulls back to show two Japanese snow monkeys. Gently, one strokes and grooms the other. The voice says: “The female grooms the male as a form of contact and bonding; these physical manifestations solidify their relationship.”

Watching that, I found myself thinking about male grooming. In fact, I found myself wandering through the pharmacy looking for a puff pad. Seriously. Just a quick word to big advertising: Men don’t want to purchase anything with the words “puff” or “pad” on them unless they are prefaced, respectively, with “cream” or “brake.” Anyway, a puff pad is a handheld exfoliating scrubby device not for your dishes, but for your visage.

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THE BOULEVARDIER: To my consternation

White jeans at the Hugo Boss show. Photograph by Giovanna Castiglione.

To my consternation, I haven’t been able to settle on a particular subject to discuss this week. It’s all come down to the weather. Lately, I’m  never sure how to dress. +20 one day and down to +2 the next night. While I often revel in the potential for multiple outfits in a day, last week was a nightmare!

I started making notes on rain gear and the pleasures of an oil-slicker hat which led me to thinking about trench coats, which led me to thinking about boots to brogues, then about shoes without socks, which then got me thinking about socks. I could go on about socks for hours. Then the weather changed and I needed to pull out my gloves and a thick sweater and a fur trader hat. Today, as I write this, I’m wearing white on white with a vintage hockey jacket combo. ‘Course I will have to check my phone to see how to dress for the evening. (Yes, there will be a 7-degree drop in temperature.)

As you may have guessed, I am not one of those men who wear shorts and flip-flops as soon as the mercury rises to +10 degrees. Honestly, are you not cold? Is it a right of passage to receive your MBA? What? I want to know!

Now, to my musings about what to wear in April.

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