lenox lenox

I’m a rather unreliable human being. As a traveling companion I don’t recommend myself I’m too much of a menace. I’m not much company because when the evening descends I usually disappear. I wouldn’t have breakfast with you, either. Lunch and the whole day, but no morning and no evening. If you think you’re going to have company all day I may as well tell you now, you’re not. You’d be saying, “Hell, what do I do all day by myself?” So I don’t recommend myself. It’s not too good to go with maniacs.

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Happy Birthday, Greta Garbo! (September 18, 1905 - April 15, 1990)

“Her real tragery is that she is a lone wolf. No matter how much she may love a person and try to hold onto that person’s life and be part of it, in the end she has to let go and pursue her own lonely course. People have sometimes said that she has little talent for friendship. Her problem is that her standards of friendship are so high that few people can meet them. In her self-imposed isolation she cannot understand a friend who has a need to go about socially and perhaps partake the innocent frivolities of life. To her, and rightly so, life is a serious matter. She is a Virgo, Virgo are often over critical, high strung and intolerant. They are also very analytical. Greta analyzes everything as if she were holding a magnifying glass up to her life. Her analyses are sometimes wrong, but once I said to her, “No matter how wrong she is, in her error she is more right than people who are right.” She has, what I consider a very striking quality, a deep purity of intention in all she does. I believe her own greatest problem and one that cause her untold unhappiness is an underlying suspicion toward people and life itself. (…) But in this matter of suspicion Greta is again a paradox, as she is on most thing. She will often be suspicious to the last ditch of someone who is really her friend, and give her confidence to sometone who has not got the slightest bit of her interest at heart. Her judgment can often be unstable and unsoud.” (Mercedes de Acosta in Here Lies the Heart)

LENOX AVENUE: MIDNIGHT

The rhythm of life 
Is a jazz rhythm, 
Honey. 
The gods are laughing at us. 

The broken heart of love, 
The weary, weary heart of pain, – 
Overtones, 
Undertones, 
To the rumble of street cars, 
To the swish of rain. 

Lenox Avenue, 
Honey. 
Midnight, 
And the gods are laughing at us. 

– Langston Hughes (1902–1967)


Image: Model Chanel Iman photographed by Peter Lindbergh in front of the Lenox Lounge jazz club on Lenox Avenue in Harlem, New York | ‘Fashion… And All That Jazz’, Harper’s Bazaar US, September 2009