Sunday, 4 July 2010

The 4th of July

Posted by Tania Kindersley.

To all my heavenly American readers:

                 HAPPY 4TH OF JULY

Jasper Johns Flag

May I say

Thank you, America,


Dorothy Parker, Charlie Parker, and all those great people called Parker.

Thank you for Fred Astaire, and Ava Gardner, and Gregory Peck, and Humphrey Bogart, and Lauren Bacall.

Thank you for Ernest Hemingway, and F Scott Fitzgerald, and TS Eliot, and Henry James, and Willa Cather, and Harper Lee, and Robert Lowell, and William Maxwell, and Jack Kerouac, and James Baldwin.

Thank you for jazz.

Thank you for Nina Simone, and Billie Holiday, and Ella Fitzgerald, and Bob Dylan, and Otis Redding, and Frank Sinatra.

Thank you for the Chrysler building and the redwood tree and the bar of The Carlyle.

Thank you for separation of church and state, and the people who walked across the bridge at Selma, and the craziest, most fascinating politics in the world.

Thank you for Lee Miller and Margaret Bourke-White and Dorothea Lange.

Thank you for Peter Arno and HL Mencken and the early years of Woody Allen.

Thank you for potato chips, or, as we like to call them in Blighty, crisps.

Thank you for the postcard, and the paper clip.

Thank you for doing interesting and sometimes irreverent things with the English language.

Sadly, I cannot thank you for baseball, since it is a vastly inferior game to cricket. (Oh, oh, stop throwing things at me.)

American flag

Today is also a banner day because it is my older niece's birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, lovely Tara.

My mother gave her this amazingly elegant present:


We had a little birthday drink and talked of string theory and the best way to scarify a lawn. Usual sort of subjects.

Then I got very excited because I found the first, tiny chanterelles:


Not ready to pick yet, but soon, soon.

Also, some astonishingly delightfully mossiness, which always lifts my heart:


And some really wild, pop-art tree bark:


There was balmy sun this morning, and a high wind, but now the sky has gone black and a monsoon rain has come on, quite without warning. It is like being in a Somerset Maugham short story. I am going to sit quietly and watch it.

Happy Independence Day.


  1. Thank you - for a wonderful post. We do not generally think of these things so its nice to see it written down for everyone to see.

  2. Good to be reminded of what America gave us.
    I love their lush puddings too much; Pecan pie, Mississippi, brownies & cookies...and their awesome landscapes.
    Lovely flowers too.

  3. ah the Americans are dears- thank you too for Arthur Miller and Margaret Atwood and Martin Luther King and the Beach Boys- perhaps not in that rather confused order

  4. Thank you very much Tania for your v encouraging comment. I'm more than a bit chuffed that you like the blog (it's part of Colin McDowell's website, if you're interested - he is the most brilliant fashion writer and his blog is fantastic). Am pretty new to this blogging thing and it's hard to know if anyone's actually reading it (even my mum), so it was great to hear from you.
    Many thanks, and all best wishes, Sarah

  5. And thank you for Prince, whose track 'The Ballard of Dorothy Parker' is one of my favourites of all time.

  6. Loved your list of Tania....Ava Gardner, Gregory Peck, Bogie and Bacall....I definitely agree with all of those.

    The Chrysler Building is my favourite building in NYC.

    Great choices :)


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