i fancy a brandy


I know this doesn’t make me a very good shoulda-been-gay slightly-twee married fop, but I’d never experienced a Noel Coward play until Sunday. Along with the enchanting Geoffrey Nauffts, Michael Mastro and Julianne Hoffenberg, we went to see “Design for Life” in Williamstown, MA and I found it positively a hoot. Funny how a comedy about bisexual threesomes could keep you from starving during the Depression.


Tessa, Marisa Tomei, Julianne, Geoff

Marisa Tomei is a friend of Tessa’s crowd (she was a Naked Angel back in the day) and she gave a remarkable performance alongside Campbell Scott and Steven Weber.

I saw Campbell Scott’s glasses after the show, and instantly recognized his crappy eyesight as my own: -7.5 at least. He said he was -7, and I told him that LASIK is the best chance I ever took. He said he was too scared to get it done, but I’d just like to put out a public service message to everyone out there in blogland: if you have shitty eyes, get your ass down to a reputable hospital and have them lasered. You’ve got a better chance of going blind while driving there.

My life from 1975 to 1999 was a constant misery of dopey eyeglasses, scratchy contacts, migraines, saline solution, and lost prescriptions. I hated my glasses so much that I rarely had my picture taken in them. They fogged up in the winter, and slid down my face in the summer.

I looked like a… well, shit, why don’t I just show you:


That was my senior yearbook picture, and NO, it wasn’t taken in 1970. It was 1985, and everyone else looked normal, it was ME who maintained a zork-spaz relationship with haircuts and eyewear. Why nobody intervened… I dunno. Perhaps everyone was busy.

Anyway, I got contacts the next year, and though I looked like I had a body wave:


at least I was presentable. So all you glasses and contact lens sufferers, please, borrow money from your parents or 401K and get zapped.


more Impressionist picture fun with Tessa’s Treo 600 “camera”

0 thoughts on “i fancy a brandy

  1. Laurie from Manly Dorm

    OK, now that I have outted myself as a star-struck gawker, I feel free to shout out: “Marisa, You were superb in ‘In the Bedroom!’ I knew when I saw you in ‘A Different World’ that you were meant for bigger things!” Thanks for including her in your posted photo. But Ian, why oh why is there no photo of Campbell Scott! I appreciated the photos of you, and I know that it is your blog and all, but a recent photo of Campbell would have made my day. He is beautiful. Oh, and I noticed James Gandolfini’s name on the ‘Naked Angels’ link. Any chance that he will be passing through your blog in photo or reference format?
    By the way, thanks for the Lasik info. I have been wearing glasses/contacts since kindergarten, and I am thinking about making my move to Lasik. . .

  2. scruggs

    I love me some Campbell Scott (just got around to seeing Roger Dodger…crazy fun), but fear an visual of him in big ole glasses could have tainted his image. Maybe Ian could move in a new direction with this blog, make it like a Gen X Tiger Beat.

  3. C

    I think glasses make young men look really handsome. I’m anti-Lasik.
    Except, well, you’re right – those 1985 Napoleon Dynamite ones aren’t so hot.

  4. Ian

    Man, if I’d known, I would have taken a picture of him with the Treo. To be honest, I wasn’t even sure if ANY of these pics were going to come out.

  5. Tanya

    Three comments:
    1. My eyesight is worse! I’m a -8.5 in one eye and -8.0 in the other. I have the female version of Ian’s childhood photos hidden away at my parent’s house. Although my folks took pity on me and let me get contacts in 8th grade. Too poor for laser surgery. Am willing to accept donations. :)
    2. I hear ya, Mr. Fancy Hollywood Rubbin’ Knower of Famous Folk! anyone else struck by the body language in the photo there with Tessa and Marissa? You sure y’all are friends?
    3. What the heck is a Treo? (perhaps Oliver could expand on this too?) ;)

  6. cullen

    That”s hilarious; I had a pretty goofy, belligerent, not-so-Cambridge-bound 8th grade chorister here named David Aboulafia a few years ago. Wonder if he ever learned to match pitch?
    Kudos and your paparazzi love it, but I don’t give a slick shite which celebrities you know. It’s people who need people.
    Campbell Scott is smart and diverse; my wife likes his gentle look.
    (HOT, HOT) Marisa Tomei, Tessa and other photographed arms-folders appear to all be waiting on the end of intermission or for the fire alarm to stop going off.
    My eyes still work well unless I’m loaded.
    Spit out your gum David.

  7. Chris

    Ian is one of my friends from college, and I won’t have him treated like this on his own blog! Insufferable, perhaps. Jackass, yes. But insufferable jackass? You yourself, professor, through your studies, must no doubt be aware that the “blog” form amplifies the most craven, self-serving, ego-infalting, karma-whoring, star-fucking impulses in all of us. Given Ian’s starting point — literally karma-whoring (claiming authorship of a book he merely contributed to) and (granted, d-level at best) star-fucking — it’s no wonder you found his blog “overblown.” But “crap” — my good sir, those are fighting words! Put up your dukes, chairman! By the way, I read “A Mediterranean Emporium: the Catalan Kingdom of Majorca” and it fucking sucks ass. You completely ignored the influence of mercantilism and paganism on the territory — an oversight I’m certain my materialistic and celebrity-worshipping friend Ian would NEVER have missed.

  8. cullen

    Can’t be all that far from snotty Cambridge College to Puke and Luke Dook’s fucking sister-city Durham, England.
    Devilish BlueBloods are all alike; the sky bleeds the only true blue.

  9. Laurie from Manly Dorm

    Excuse me, Professor, but your tirade is not quite the scholarly discourse I would expect from a Cambridge professor. Glad I am not paying high tuition dollars to sit in your classroom and listen to such drivel!
    Anyway, I am an avid, satisfied reader of Ian’s blog, and I will not have you cast such aspersions! I enjoy his photos of well-known actors as much as photos of his dog, Chopes, and his assorted family. Did you happen to see the photo of his Mormon relatives inspecting his new Prius this summer? Simply adorable. Ian welcomes any and all readers, such as you and me, into his world, and I give him much credit for having the bravery to do so. Believe me, Professor, I have my share of Napoleon Dynamite-esque photos of my own, and you don’t see me posting them on a blog. To be candid, I checked out your link, and I think perhaps you have some Napoleon Dynamite shots of your own childhood.
    The fact that Ian is able to include a few photos of the well-known, considering that he WORKS IN THAT FIELD, is like icing on the cake. Feel free to create your own blog, Professor, full of photos of your academic cronies, and discourse about your curriculum. I for one will not be reading it.

  10. Ian

    It’s too bad the Professor hides behind anonymity; “giant, quivering, pink, pearly pussy” surely rates him as one of my favorite vulgarians.
    By the way, Chris, I hope I have never “claimed authorship” of “13th-GEN.” I thought I’d been honest about my level of contribution to the book, but I’ll look back and be more careful.

  11. Laurie from Manly Dorm

    Poor Ian. I am sure during the dark days when you think about putting an end to your blog, you will think upon this day when you were called a “Giant, Quivering, Pink. . . ” “To Hell with these people,” you may say. Well, don’t do it. We all love your blog, and I meant what I said about admiring you for putting it all out there like you do each day. There are a lot of blogs out there, but only a handful that I read daily. And you and dooce are the only ones who make me laugh out loud on a regular basis! Plus, your blog has celebrity sightings! Keep up the good work.

  12. michelle

    Why is “pussy” a derogatory term? I think that’s unimaginative. A vagina is a veritable miracle, and self-cleaning organ of life, and if Professor Abulafia were getting a little more of it, he might have better things to do than berate my brother.
    Tee hee!


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