Went to E2's new home on Sunday. She's bought a smashing fixer-upper in Westdene. With all the pressed ceilings and wooden floors, it's a little gem. So in celebration we popped the champagne and sat on the lawn discussing the best housewarming gifts for her.
E2 is the epitome of ironic kitsch. The word 'ironic' was diplomatically placed there, because 'outright hideous kitsch' doesn't sound too nice. She collects not cool kitsch – like fuzzy dice – but Morkels furniture kitsch.
The gift registry for her housewarming would be easy: anywhere in Lenasia, the Oriental Plaza or Ellerines.
It's fascinating running through her latest collectors' items (“found this at Oriental. Fifty bucks boet. Fifty bucks for such a gold and plastic masterpiece.”)
To her credit, she's very aware of her insatiable need for and the irony behind the hideous household ornaments, and it is a large laughing and talking point any which way.
Here're three examples:
1) A plastic gold framed Jesus, with disco lights coming out of his head when you plug it into the wall. (And another one of the Hindu god with five arms, and flashing disco lights.)
2) A royal wedding memorabilia plate. Not the Charles & Di (the one everyone wanted back in the 80s), no. She's got the lesser-known, lesser-popular Fergie & Andrew one. Classic.
3) A chrome, gold and silver plastic clock with the words “Good Wishes” on a plaque at the base. The clock is set in a circle, and built into a gold boat, with dancing waves and chrome dolphins at its aft, and a gold windmill jutting from the top. You just have to stare at it in disbelief, it's that revolting.
What she needs is:
Those three porcelain/bronze ducks of variegating sizes for the wall.
A dolphin clock.
In fact, anything dolphin. Preferably with glitter and waves. And painted various shades of bright blue.
A cocheted blanket doily.
[To go on the back of] the velvet, studded, varnished and impeccably-ornate pine lounge suite from Lubners.
The ceramic sombrero with the light behind it.
The pleather sausage dog door stopper.
The “welcome to our wonderful home” plaque, or similarly those wooden signs people put in their pot plants with little Amish ladies hanging off them, “This basil is blessed” or something equally twee like “A beautiful garden shows a beautiful soul.”
The Barbie doll knitted toilet paper holder.
The hand-crafted shell jewellery box you find at coastal curio shops. Similarly the conch with the glued on eyes and mouth, or the shell encrusted base for a lamp that says “I Went To Port Alfred” on it.
A poster of “What Your Name Means” with a description written in a floral font for the back of the bathroom door.
One of those gold cats you see at Chinese restaurants, with the electronic arm that moves up and down.
The snow globe where you can put your own pictures in the middle.
Plastic bunches of grapes for the electric fence, so it looks like a vine.
Buying for her is the ultimate gas.
PS: I parked on the apex of a hill when arriving at her place. And didn't put the handbrake up properly. My car then went on its own mission while I happily drank bubbly inside. I found him – Ludwig – on the other side of the road, his bumper ten centimetres from a tree. My car miraculously stopped just before plowing into a tree. Fuck. How lucky is that? I mean, there could've been unmentionable damage – had it gone down the hill altogether....fuck. How's that for a stroke of luck?
PPS: Holiday in 6 hours.