Thursday, May 26, 2011

We don't need to talk about Kevin

From memory she'd put a US stamp on it for local posting. My suspicious mind started ticking over more. Perhaps some drug was concealed behind the stamp. I told him that if he wanted to take this letter then I wouldn't be travelling with him. Eventually Kevin acquiesced. "Fine, we'll throw it away then," he said. "No, we'll buy some English stamps and post it in England so at least the letter arrives," I suggested.

By now Kevin was well and truly over this letter he'd so innocently accepted and I'm sorry to say it ended up in many pieces inside the rubbish bin of our London hotel. For the record, it didn't seem to have contained drugs.

Welcome to Shelley Bridgeman's Drug Hell. One wonders what the message the letter contained: "yes, yes, of course I will marry you," perhaps, or "please accept my deepest condolences." Not that Shelley was concerned that the letter should contain drugs, only that she might be caught with them. Not that Kevin cared for her idea that they post it in England; he ripped it up.

But then, that is the sort of response one could expect from Shelley and Kevin. Every week, several times every week, Shelley has a new story to tell of her vapid, selfish, view of the world. She burst on to the commentary scene with her now famous thesis that poor people are ugly and stupid. Since then she has granted us numerous insights into her life and mind, such as her Disneyphobia:
We were lazing in our room when one of us realised the innocuous-looking table lamps amid otherwise non-Disney-esque interior decoration featured prominent Mickey Mouse ears. It had taken us days to recognise this but then it was impossible to not see it. And trudging back to our room after a busy day we discovered the same iconic design woven into the intricately patterned, faux-Victorian carpet in the corridor.

Were these symbols merely commitment to the theme and subtle little in-jokes for observant guests? Or were they subliminal messages intended to infiltrate our subconscious and sway us to commit to the brand for life?
What a short stange trip it's been. Along the way, Bridgeman has brought us such gems as "I think I prefer contemplating the holocaust in solitude" (a favourite of Boganette) and the classic "My husband's job is more important (read: more highly paid) than mine; it would be churlish of me to not support him in his efforts to provide for his family. "

For readers curious to see how Shelley and Kevin live, assistance is provided by NZ Homes and Gardens:
In 2002, while on assignment for a lifestyle magazine, Shelley experienced a design epiphany.

She came away from a well-appointed home impressed by the vast amount of art on display and resolved to begin her own collection and commission more pieces of furniture.

“Over the years I’ve found a piece of furniture and art for every spot,” she says now. The house has become a veritable art gallery, with room for work ranging from Michel Tuffery’s pressed corned beef tin bull to a Martin Poppelwell white earthenware bunny sculpture (“most people don’t realise it’s ironic,” says Shelley) and the Ralph Hotere El Toro lithograph that was bought to celebrate the couple’s tenth wedding anniversary.

Most people don't realise it's ironic; indeed, many of us are wondering whether Shelley's articles are subtle works of satire. But then one sees the photographs and understands that, if Shelley is a satirist, then she is suffering for her art. One might also notice the absence of bookshelves:
Once I've read a novel it goes straight to the Caring Shed too. I know I'll never re-read it and I've never understood the penchant for displaying novels in bookcases. Whatever the message - I can read? I have great taste in novels? I have a large budget for books? - it's not one that resonates with me.
But what is the secret of their success? What is it that keeps Shelley and Kevin and that peculiar little daughter in Hoteres, ironic bunnies and off-white bed linen? The answer is to be found in Shelley's most recent article:
But I guess I was surprised that other people aren't as mistrustful as I am. My radar is perpetually tuned to look for the catch, to be vigilant for people who might be furthering their self-interest at my expense. My days are spent fending off both real and imagined dangers. 'What ifs' and worst-case-scenarios have taken up permanent residence in my head - and, quite frankly, it's exhausting.
In short, they are awful, suspicious, selfish people who fear that everybody else might be as ghastly as are they. The price of designer furniture is eternal paranoia.


Megan Clayton said...

I cannot leave unnoted the point that her "'what-ifs' and worst-case scenarios" didn't apparently extend to including in her newborn daughter's feeding and sleeping those best practices to reduce the risk of SUDI. Instead, being a non-third-world-, non-meth-family was all she needed.

Tom said...

She's like the My Tornado Hell lady:

laughing_boy said...

Personally I've never been able to get over the suspicion that she might bite me, based on her photo.
But I guess that's just what I have to suffer to maintain my lifestyle.

Psycho Milt said...

By now Kevin was well and truly over this letter he'd so innocently accepted and I'm sorry to say it ended up in many pieces inside the rubbish bin of our London hotel. For the record, it didn't seem to have contained drugs.

This is priceless. As satire it would be pure gold, but as completely unconscious genuine awfulness it really needs an entirely new metal to compare it with.

Boganette said...

I love this post. So true. I wonder if she's even aware of how morally hideous she is?