Monkey Business

February 04, 2021

Writing An Article About Freja Beha Erichsen kept me in a loop for a while. Life really is simple. It’s the people who like to complicate it. Or don’t, but still do.

… Yet Her Pictures Keep Me Here is what I wrote in my Instagram stories, each word on each of Freja’s photographs I’d selected from ~yes~ Instagram without thinking. But ~wishful thinking~ that if I would have done so (write the actual words on the photographs), I would have, eventually, written everything that crossed my mind (or something) about a girl I would have turned gay for. For a day. A week.

Everything. Sounds big. It is, because there’s something this woman has that makes me, instantly, at once, both relax and straighten my back bone. And lose the track of time. It’s Sunday evening and here I am, not stopping from looking at pictures of her, from on top of my bed.

There are people who have this power of making people feel present by being present. Through a photograph, a screen even. Imagine what it feels like in real life. Most of us hear it all the time – be present – now more than ever, in the world of 2020, although ~newsflash~ it’s 2021. There must be some sort of joke about hearing a thing, knowing a thing, but almost refusing to do the thing? Choosing not to. Choosing to.

Being present is one thing. Exercising is another. Eating fruit and vegetables versus taking yourself too seriously when talking about eating. Yes, talking. There are some jokes about vegans. About people who run the marathons. Yes, those. I don’t remember them, but I can mentally smile at them.

Worrying, in some sort of sense, has been part of my life (while writing, I’m also hoping to change has been to had been as soon as I finish this phrase), so I’m beyond happy when I realise I manage not to and it is precisely then that the most wonderful things happen. Usually, with a special kind of people. It sounds so simple, magical even, and it is. The mindset and the people.

Where is this going?

So, I guess people tricked themselves into believing they needed games. If there are no games, they think life is, you know, simple and it can’t be simple. Just true and clean. Easy. It seems like, sometimes, people don’t even consider this as an option, so they start making all these things up just to confirm their belief that life isn’t, indeed, as beautiful as they haven’t even dreamt of believing it to be. It is! I’m on the no games boat and it was at the sight of the games boat that the worries had started to form. Had started – a tense to show an action that both started and ended in the past.

Be here, be in the now, ha!

I can’t remember when this love started, ten or maybe more years ago. I’ve always liked cool ladies that minded their own business. What I can tell you for sure is that it is Freja who stars in the Saint Laurent ad I tore from Vogue. I love Freja, her float tattoo floating in a pool, her Saint Laurent dress by Anthony Vaccarello (Winter 2019), shot by Juergen Teller, and well, Vogue.

I tore the picture from Vogue, kept on my desk for a while, then got framed and is, currently, on the wall in the living room, just beneath the disco ball at home. And Whitney.

It reminds me to float through life, just take it easy, be calm, just float. Literally. It takes discipline. Especially when my head seems about to explode. Or heart. Especially heart. It also reminds me of the fact that I thought of having a little monkey when I was a kid.


I’m so used to my phone home screen, that I almost forget about it. I have to stop, once in a while, and marvel at the picture it features. The same Freja ad. Well, when I like something, I really like something.

Self-discipline takes us to self-respect. To live without self-respect is to lie awake some night, beyond the reach of warm milk, phenobarbital, and the sleeping hand on the coverlet, counting up the sins of commission and omission, the trusts betrayed, the promises subtly broken, the gifts irrevocably wasted through sloth or cowardice or carelessness. However long we post-pone it, we eventually lie down alone in that notoriously un- comfortable bed, the one we make ourselves. Whether or not we sleep in it depends, of course, on whether or not we respect ourselves (Joan Didion, Self Respect. Its Source. Its Power, Vogue).

It’s tricky when you let yourself float, you don’t worry, everything and everyone around you seems to say float, but then a wave comes. Luckily, again, I like waves also. At first, I might be surprised by the wave, but then I ride it. Alone or not, I ride it. When I feel I can, I let myself float again. When I choose, again, to float. To open my heart again and again and again, because live all you can, it’s a mistake not to (Henry James).

Float through life, just take it easy, be calm, not so much stress, just float…

Float feels like a good synonym for surrender.

In brief, people with self-respect exhibit a certain toughness, a kind of moral nerve; they display what was once called character, a quality which, although approved in the abstract, sometimes loses ground to other, more instantly negotiable virtues (Joan Didion, Self Respect. Its Source. Its Power, Vogue).

Loop feels like a good synonym for wave.

Because monkeys are cool.

You know when you float on water, in the sea or ocean, let’s say, and look at the sky, the sun…? And it’s all baby blue and shiny and calm and free…

Hey, this is Cristina Pavelescu wearing a music cassette sweater, decoding (life) style and writing from wherever, yet always living in OZ, a world I invite you into. To smile in front of our screens (and live one day), put any kind of questions, answer in writing (or imagination) and marvel at fashion which is, in fact, style.


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