#girlsonfilm is a feature in which your friend and ours, Hannah Oliver, recreates famous cinematic scenes in real life and then writes about them. The idea being to discover what happens when the fantasy of film is brought down to the reality of everyday life.
Oh, guys. You know when Rizzo’s down about being preggers-not-preggers and Kenickie’s all like “how ‘bout I finish with ya, huh?” and wraps his arm around Frenchie like he’s gonna cheat? That’s what I feel like today. As if I’ve cheated you. Cheated on you. Whatevs.
Which is apt. Because we re-created Grease today, at Mary’s Milk Bar on the Grassmarket in Edinburgh. You know that darling scene where Frenchie’s accidentally dyed her hair bubble-gum pink and seeks life advice from Vi, the world-weary yet endearing restauranteur? Well, Mary of the Milk Bar is an adorable, accommodating connoisseur of gelato. I mean, she seriously knows her shit – she studied it in Italy (yah, I know). Oh, did I mention she’s adorable? Mary-Vi parallels? I think so! We so deep.
And it’s also apt because I think, by this time in the year, there’s a little bit of Frenchie in all of us – in need of extortionate amounts of sugar and some adult perspective. I mean, no accidental dying of hair, but you can call me Mulberry for wealth of bag-under-eye. My glands are raised like hackles and this weekend not only was I rejected from Edinburgh’s student union club: Potterrow (yeah, that happened), but I passed out on my scalding hot water bottle and blistered myself thrice over. Ugh.
- Recipe: Holly dressed all ‘50s as muse for the week; I lugged my ten-ton camera around all morning.
- Remedy: We got gelato for lunch (spiced apple, baked fig and sticky toffee pudding, thanks for asking). Plus life advice from Mary (she places emphasis on community, nostalgia for #studentlife, and carpe diem. And likes eating her own gelato for lunch. What a gal).
- Remedy (cont.): AND, on top of that, we’d barely sat down to enjoy when none other strolled in than The Man himself, Sam Prance, with the dashing bf. Like when Frankie Avalon waltzes on screen five minutes in with ‘Beauty School Drop-Out’ and makes the world a better place.
So that’s what we learnt from film-life this week. Value the hand that feeds you (both sugar and advice). Cut, print, check the gate … right?
Wrong. I’m a terrible person. See, the truth is I cheated you – I’ve been so Frenchie that I didn’t think ahead, and having made a lunch date at Mary’s Milk Bar, I appropriated #GirlsonFilm to life, instead of life to #GirlsonFilm. I betrayed to Mary my secret identity as scene-recreator. Game over. And then – and THEN – conjured up this contextual tripe about us all being Frenchie because my degree currently seems to be in the Fine Art of Bullshit rather than any substantial or acknowledged, like … knowledge. Ok, rant over. But …
There’s nothing worse than watching a film that doesn’t compliment its audience’s intelligence. Or when the agenda of the production company shines through the plot-line. The escapism is lost, the magic diminished. So, I’ll admit, what happened today was not Elevated Art, it was Real Life. I had a lovely lunch with my friends: Holly (thanks for being a great sport and wearing your wonderful ‘50s skirt), Mel, Jess, Sam, Bryan – thank you. Mary really is adorable and accommodating; she attracts the sort of customers who bring in jars of amorena cherries and request that she transforms them into gelato. And she does have wonderfully simple life advice.
What have we learnt about film-life this week? It’s ok to occasionally be a calamity. Don’t sweat the small stuff, eat the sweet stuff – and preferably with the peeps you love. Just cause, y’know, carpe diem.
Hannah Oliver studies English Literature at Edinburgh University. She would like to think that this is an apt excuse for her tendency to be overly florid, pleonastic and long-winded (yeah, we couldn’t find a more pretentious word for long-winded). However, there are two things to effectively shut her up – coffee and/or chocolate. ’Nuff said.
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