Posts By: Aurélie

When hunger comes


My second appointment with Dr Zermati was yesterday. I arrived very late after forgetting my food diary, here is a subconsciously deliberate mistake. But in the end, my diary and I, we were there.

I was a bit scared, for I am used to medical reprimands on my meals that are according to me rather modest and healthy but seem to actually be, for every nutritionist, an example of orgy not be followed

You can imagine my surprise when I realised that the only interesting part of the diary for mister Zermati is the one where I describe how I feel before, during and after sex meals.

He didn’t need a long time to conclude: I eat too often without being hungry and battle to stop eating once I start.

Good news, according to him.

Because, so it seems, if we manage to get rid of all the food eaten for whatever reasons except hunger, I will necessarily lose weight.

OK, but how?

Through learning again to feel hungry.

Right, for me honestly, I know very well how it feels to have the munchies. In fact it happens to me often. So, he must have seen on my face that I was slightly skeptical.

Except that when he talks about hunger, it is not exactly what I mean by starving. Let’s say it is a bit the same with everything that implies effort, suffering, stamina. I don’t use the same scale as everyone else. A rather low tolerance threshold, you could kindly say. That is why now, no more messing around, we are talking about being hungry, really hungry.

Let me explain.

For the next four days, I will engage in a little experiment. Namely, skip breakfast, leave to work with a snack of whichever nature (basically I can choose two croissants, biscuits or yogurt drink, it matters little to him) and eat it only when I am really hungry.

“The issue is when I wake up I am famished.”

“Well, you’ll wait a bit anyway. In your mind, how long will it take for you to be VERY hungry?”

Short hesitation, time to realise « ten minutes » is most probably a wrong answer.

« …Hum… one hour? »

Slightly desperate look from the doctor who understands he is facing a tough case (=limit hopeless).

Self-control from that guy who’s seen a few things in his life and answer from a health professional.  “No, you will not be very hungry, it is after three, four hours maybe, that you will really feel it”.

Right, the idea is yet not to faint, so he explained afterwards. But the rough idea is to wait for hunger to be unpleasant and almost painful before having the snack. Why? Because, and that is the interesting part according to me, because when you’re hungry you don’t put on weight.

When you’re hungry you don’t put on weight.

I know I just repeated the same sentence. But it is a bit as if The Mysterious Cities of Gold were revealed to me, you see. All in all, what Dr Zermati says without hesitation, is that what is swallowed when your body complains of hunger can’t be turned into fat since it will be used to fuel the engine.

Even better, he assures that it is easier to feel satiety when you are really hungry.

In short, during four days, I must manage to postpone my first meal in order to start eating only when I’ll need it physically. And go on with the same idea for the rest of the day.

This exercise has a small drawback: I’ll be staggered all the time and might eat a croissant while my colleagues have a steak. At the same time it is only for four days, which will include a week-end. I’ll just have to explain to my kids that all I ever said about obligation to eat at a table and at fixed hours was nonsense. I’ll pay for it, for sure.

But I have to admit that this idea of rebooting my organism, starting from scratch and finally feeding like a newborn (babies scream when they are hungry because their stomach twists and it really hurts), is delighting.

On top of that, no food restriction, because, anyway, you don’t put on weight when you’re hungry (I mentioned it already? Reallyyyyyyyyy?). Nor with a slice of custard tart neither with a plate of green beans. One last thing, even if during these four days I don’t manage to stop when I am full, not a big deal. Because waiting until I starve again to start the next meal will allow me to burn the extra calories.

I know, it sounds almost too good to be true. But in my opinion, it is less cool than I think and I could very well be crying for my breakfast tomorrow at 9AM. And at the end of the day, the goal still is to eat less, I believe that’s why it didn’t work up to now, I mainly focused on the “eat everything” part…

There you go, I hope it’s not too long, I don’t want to bore you with this therapy stuff. So tell me if you want me to continue giving feedback or if we go back to down to earth subject like, for Christ’s sake, the fact that I have cowboy boots AND a leopard print scarf in my wardrobe, which makes me an almost fashionista if I believe the last Elle about accessories. I think I should create a blog, shouldn’t I?

Edit: the picture is of a tiny bakery in Bastia in which I bought the best Fiadone of all times. I wish it was my snack…


Shut up chocolate, I am zermating.


So, what about my zermating? Believe me, believe not, since last week’s consultation, I’ve lost two kilos. Rest assured, I am not jumping all over the place screaming out of joy, I know myself enough to know that I usually celebrate with a piece of  custard tart and, bam, the two kilos are back.

Nevertheless, I haven’t seen the needle tilting that way for months. So I deduce that maybe something has started out.

It must be said that keeping a food diary is a lethal weapon against snacking. Of course, it is always possible lie through your teeth. But in that case, it’s really going to be an expensive consultation if I pretend to feed solely on greens and grilled meat, at regular hours and with reasonable portions.

As a result, inevitably, to the ‘Touch of sea salt’ chocolate slab that eyes me up not even one hour after a rather copious meal (a to die for bagel loaded with cream cheese and avo + a slice of homemade figs tart), I say get lost. Basically, let’s say that chocolate cravings are like cigarette ones, they goes away. Or not.

Right, even if I feel like a bomb shell since my weight went down to a new set of tens (yes, those two kilos are all the more symbolic for that reason) nothing is sorted out, because it is not normal to have my eye on chocolate at 14h right after taking the edge of my hunger. I have a feeling the journey to eating serenity will be a long and bumpy ride.

That’s it, otherwise today I am actually going back to work after our summer holidays and I feel full of enthusiasm, sort of… A true warrior who will go a long way in life.


And what was your weight when you were 12?


To eat more slowly and to focus solely on eating during meals.

These are the two tips – at first sight trivial – with which I left after my one hour consultation with the famous doctor Zermati.

Yes, I know, you could think that with a consultation costing 100 Euros, it is a pricy moderato chewing.
But there hasn’t been only this, obviously. And above all, it was a first appointment, an initial contact, a first touch, may I say…

So how did it go, this last chance Zermati-dating?

First of all, would you believe, I almost didn’t make it in time by dint of staying home, think continuously, like a mantra: “I’m gonna be late, so he’ll refuse to see me”.

Too bad for Mrs. Very Brave, the subway went so fast that at 14h sharp I was in front of the door of the white doctor’s room on de Ponthieu street in the 8th Arrondissement, yes ladies, I confirm, our kilos enrich endocrinologists.

I’ll skip the few minutes wait during which I felt nauseous as if I were going to take the Bac’s French oral again (1). On top of that I’ve skipped Rousseau and, there we go, I draw “Reveries of a Solitary Walker”, thank you life.

And then, just when I was seriously considering running away, here he came, smiling, out of his consulting room.
For those who have not seen him on TV, I would describe him as a middle aged man, not so tall, dark haired with glasses and slim – but this is specific to his job, not sure I would trust an obese nutritionist, I know that’s stupid.

“What brings you here?” he asked once seated in front of me. I thought about Nip-Tuck and its two sexes on legs of plastic surgeons who always ask their patients this ritual question, even when the reason sticks out like a sore thumb.

“Well, I have a whitlow, and I thought, taking into account your fame…”

No, of course, I did not show off and replied very obediently, because I guess it is the beginning of something to actually put into words the reason of the move.

“I would like to put an end to my disastrous relationship with food.”

He seemed slightly surprised that I did not simply say that I wanted to slim down.

I am no fool anymore, see!

From this moment, he asked a whole bunch of questions on my life, from my birth in Toulon in 1971, till today. He took note of my siblings’ names, went through my diets history, and established my weight’s chronology.
It is actually not so harmless an exercise, it strikes a painful nerve, with memories of very lengthy snack times when coming back from school, of night raids in my friends Bea’s cupboards, 45 kilos for 25 years but always in for escabeche(2) tuna at around 3 in the morning.

Bottom-line, between diets that have made me gain weight since teen years and my cursed by bitch Mother Nature metabolism, my “set point” could be around 65 – 70 kilos, or so it seems.

No objections, I said. At this level, I feel balanced and am able to stabilize my weight while eating my fill.
Issue: I am slightly over this set point since Rose’s birth.

Here it is, from now on, we will try to identify the reasons of my cravings, consequences, according to this dear doctor, of challenges dealing with my emotions.

When he said so, it stung my eyes a bit and I think he noticed it.

For the next appointment, in 2 weeks’ time, I have to keep a food diary (too easy, it’s at least my 20th) in which I will have to write down what I felt when eating, with whom and what I was doing during that time.

Keeping in mind that one should do nothing else but eating during meals and that it is an issue for me who doesn’t know how to eat or have a poo without reading everything I have before my eyes, from Frosties’s ingredients to that j***k of Laurent Joffrin’s editorial.

Edit: Yes, our national social security system refunds these consultations and yes I feel a bit guilty to have it pay for “this”. However, a little bird told me that overweight can cause loads of troubles when we get older. So, in the end, it’s not that bad to anticipate, is it?

Edit2: Yes, this is the set of pictures that triggered it all. Paradoxically, I love the joy that emanates from them, because, of course, it was a happy moment. Ironic, isn’t it? …

(1)TN: Bac, short for Baccalauréat, is the French set of exams that students have to pass in order to graduate high school.
(2)TN: Escabeche is a spicy cold marinade. Escabeche tuna is often found in France readymade in tins and commonly stored by households.

Sport hurts but it’s for your own good


Come on, let me tell you about this personal coaching session with Gregory Capra.
For the occasion I even made a minute by minute.

Here we goooo!

Friday evening

– 19h46: I take two rice puddings for dessert, I can, tomorrow I’ll do sport.

– 20h00: As a result I can even indulge with a piece of ‘Touch of sea salt’ chocolate.

– 20h10: ONE piece is nothing. Especially if the day after you do sport.

– 20h12: With a personal trainer.

– 20h14: Come on, one last madeleine and I stop.

– 20h18: At least it will be finished and I won’t be tempted.

– 20h32: I am just a pig without willpower. I want to die.

– 20h33: Luckily tomorrow I do sport.

– 20h35: Let’s hope Deedee can’t make it.

– 20h45: “What’s wrong with mum?” my daughter asks her brother, worried, after I just screamed for some kind of question on socks lying around. “Remember tomorrow she does sport” my son answers with a knowing look. “Ah, OK, I see” she sighs.

– 20h46: The man reckons doing sport tomorrow and washing dishes are not inadvisable.

– 21h56: Nor giving a blowjob.

– 22h57: The man assures that he prefers me having cellulite and being sexually active rather than fit but bad-tempered AND frigid.

– 23h01: I warn the man that if he tries an approach when I am about to go through such an ordeal, I sign up for Club Med gym and he can tighten his belt for the next six months.

Saturday morning

– 09h00: I have a hard time getting out of my bed. I don’t see how I can do sport when I can barely fetch Helmut’s dummy under the chest of drawers.

– 09h16: I feel my kids need me this morning. I think I will cancel.

– 09h24: The man reminds me I already used the sudden bronchitis excuse last week to cancel the session.

– 09h27: Yeah but everybody knows how viruses spread this time of the year. Thus it would be inappropriate to suspect I’m lying. Even shameless.

– 09h29: The man thinks it is shameless to take advantage of the worldwide pandemic to run away.

– 09h32: A text from Deedee: “So happy to see you, we’re gonna have fun.”

– 09h34: “Me too, big time.”

– 09h37: Tomorrow I’m signing up for a behavioral therapy to learn how to say no. With my balls, as Eric C. would say.

– 10h25: I put my tracksuit on.

– 10h26: On me it’s actually a legging. A fleece legging. I look like Tchoupi.

-10h32: My daughter who forgot I was going to gym yells as if her Pet Shop collection disappeared “Heyyyyyyyyyyyyy muuuuuuuum, why did you put your sport outfit on? Wuuuuuuuuuuut? You’re really going to do sport? Woooooow, you’re so funny muuuuuuuuum.”

– 10h33: I understand now what “tu quoque mi fili” means.

– 10h40: Off I go, sick at heart, to meet Greg – whom I already hate since I’ve always hated sport teachers – and Deedee – whom I hate too as everything that weight less than 70 kilos a few minutes before doing …. ugh… sport.

– 10h58: A text from Deedee: “Am late, bad start.”

– 10h59: “I am waiting for you, no way I’m getting in there without you. We live together, we die together.”

– 11h00: A musical voice with an accent from South-West, while I am miserably trying to hide behind a scooter. “Hi there, are you Caroline?”

– 11h01: I don’t hate Greg actually. In any case I have no bad feeling towards his bum.

– 11h02: I’m happy to give him half my salary every month if at the end I have a bum like his.

-11h03: His bum is good enough to eat. I know I will regret my whole life this sentence which considerably diminishes my chances to see him again. But still, Greg Capra’s bum is perfect. For the rest, he is Saddam Hussein but we’ll come back to it.

– 11h04: Deedee that vixen is not here yet. For sure sweet talking was easy this morning. But now Madam lost heart. Shame on you Mrs Influential.

– 11h05: I interrupt Greg’s discussion with Audrey Tautou’s double to tell him Deedee most probably had a nervous breakdown thinking about doing sport and dumped us. I add that I never felt she was really motivated. It’s awful but creating complicity between the two of us is a good thing, so I told myself. Too bad for the few broken pots. War is war [1].

– 11h06: Audrey Tautou laughs and says « Hey Caro, that’s cool, I’m here ».

– 11h08: Deedee had her hair cut and it makes her look even slimmer. Filthy bitch mother nature.

– 11h10: We both forgot our camera, no one will be able to immortalize this session. Drat, triple drat. What a misfortune. No that’s really too bad. So pissed off. I suggest we postpone to a next time.

– 11h11: Greg’s charming manners hide his bossy side. Fleeing is not an option.

– 11h12: It’s the third time Deedee asks for a token to close her locker because she didn’t really get how it works. I have a feeling we’re not going to do rocket science today.

– 11h14: First warm up exercise. Squats with a weighted bar. Deedee is willing to try.

– 11h16: It looks easy. She squats and lifts twelve times without stopping.

– 11h17: On the other hand, I locked my locker with one try only. One can’t handle everything.

– 11h19: My turn. The only time I’ve been asked to squat and stand up using my thighs, I felt heels over head. It was during a health assessment at work. Here at least I can hold on to the bar. I feel confident.

– 11h20: I bend my knees.

– 11h21: Not enough according to Greg.

– 11h22: I am almost crouching.

– 11h23: Now time to stand up

– 11h24: The bar is stuck, damn.

– 11h26: Or Deedee broke it. She stood up too fast and it seized up, it’s the only explanation. Or maybe Greg’s put 200 kilos on each end while I was bending my knees.

– 11h28: “Don’t stick your butt out and push with your heels on the floor, you’ll see it will be easier.”

– 11h29: At the price of superhuman stresses, I manage to lift this fucking bar and at the same time my butt. “Come on, only eleven left” says Greg.

– 11h30: Mummy. I want my mummy.

– 11h32: “Come on, lift Caroline”

– 11h33: I want an epidural.

– 11h40: I finish the twelve squats with Greg behind me, preventing my butt to stick out. I thank God and all the angels that no camera will keep track of this dreadful moment in my life. One more squat and I was not answering for my sphincters.

– 11h42: Deedee just did twelve squats with a weighted bar. When I think she assured she was bad at sport. Whereas in reality she is Mickey Rourke.

– 11h44: It’s my turn again. A question is nagging me. If this is only a warm-up what did Sylvester plan for the rest of the session?

– 11hh45: Sylvester removes the weights for me. Deedee is pissed. I remind her that even with twenty kilos on each side of the bar she still has less to lift than me. And that I carry my cast iron around 24/7. Greg says I’d better shut my mouth, save my energy and do my twelve squats.

– 11h46: Let’s hope they have a defibrillator.

– 11h48: “Now, we’re going to work on abs”, come on the mat.

– 11h49: My head want to go on the mat.

– 11h50: My legs want to be left alone. We crawl to the mat. Mickey Rourke is not faster than me. Could it be that she got off to a too good start and played all her cards?

– 11h53: Lying on the floor, we have to lift our upper body to touch our knees. “Think about the muscle you need to load and you’ll see it’ll be just fine.”

– 11h54: Either I think about the wrong muscle or the line is down between my abs and me.

– 11h55: To my biggest surprise, Greg congratulates me. “Nice job, you control your ascent and descent well, this is what matters. It’s very good to take it slow.” Poor kid, he is handsome but he is naïve. As if I were controlling ANYTHING right now.

– 11h56: Deedee’s turn.

– 11h57: Ah, Deedee’s lifted her head. However at shoulder level, nothing.

– 11h58: I am embarrassed for her. Poor thing, unable to control her ascent. I can’t imagine her descent. Complete free style, right.

– 11h59: Deedee explains that her neck hurts.

– 12h00: I give Greg a knowing look, she’s bluffing for sure. If I were him, I would give her two series of fifty to teach her. We’re not here to twiddle our thumbs, damn it.

– 12h01: Greg says we’ll do another exercise cause it is not fitted for Deedee’s morphology.

– 12h02: And how did he know that the fucking bar was fitted for my morphology, how? I want to talk to a manager. If there are double standards, let’s get this straight, I’m calling the Halde [2]. And Martin Hirsh too.

– 12h03: Now we need to stand on the side, on our forearm with straight legs.

– 12h04: I think my elbow is going to break. If there is ONE exercise that is not connected to my morphology, it’s this one. I’ll use a joker. I choose to call a friend and, believe me, William, you will regret being born.

–  12h08: After two series of push-ups which finished us off, here we are on yet another machine. A sort of chair that easily bears comparison with an electric chair and which is based on the same principle as the cigarette rolling machine. The woman before me, 72 years old more or less, was perfectly able to pull on her arms in order to swing her chest forward.

– 12h10: Another faulty equipment.

– 12h11: If no one gets me out of it I will turn into a huge cigar.

– 12h12: Deedee is in stiches. I guess the sight is hilarious.

– 12h13: Deedee refuses to climb on the fag rolling machine.

– 12h14: Taking advantage of this rebellion wind in our team, I say no to another machine which looks like parallel bars. I reckon my self-esteem is in the red

– 12h16: “Another series with weights and we’re done girls.”

– 12h17: Give me these weights, no dilly-dallying, let’s get this over with.

– 12h18: Mickey and I are flat out, we rush through the weight exercise as if we were possessed. Since the word ‘over’ has been pronounced, I find new energy. I could almost continue.


– 12h20: Greg congratulates us, he swears we both have good and bad points.

– 12h21: My good point is I control the descent during ab crunches.

– 12h22: Otherwise, I am generous. But it has nothing to do with sport.

-12h23: Deedee is a bit offended, I can feel it, with that question of uncontrolled speed. I explain it’s the kind of things that comes with age and it doesn’t stop you from being a good person, even if you can’t control your descent.

That’s it. What more can I say other than my impression, the next morning, to have been knocked over by a truck? I spent FOUR days walking as if I dried on a barrel. I moaned each time the man tried to brush past any part of my body for a week. I ate so much for the next two days that I’ve put on two kilos.

But watch out. I am the kind who controls her descent. And this my darling, is not a given for everyone.

Edit: Thank you Mickey, who really is a nice girl, we giggled like twisted and although much better than me she still sucks at sport and for me it is compliment. I’m sure we would have met behind the trees during endurance tests in secondary school. Except at the time she was in pre-school. Thank you Greg as well who’s the most adorable coach I have ever met, he almost made me want to do sport again. Almost. No, truly, he has good teaching skills, is positive, kind, never scornful. A lovely boy with an apple butt.  If you are ever tempted to call on a coach, honestly, he rocks.


[1] TN: In English in the original text

[2] TN: French Equal Opportunities and Anti-Discrimination Commission

Jack and I…

Ok, come on, let me finish this story. You might be disappointed because, you’ll see, I’ve seen no Johnny… only Jack. But not the one you think of…

No kidding, I was not convinced when I left and my heart was won when I came back. A very nice musical moment, thanks to the slender and graceful presence of Vanessa Paradis and to Matthieu Chédid’s genius who doesn’t spare himself for the one who seems to be his soul mate.

Come on, let’s go!

20h30: The hall is full and everybody’s calling Vanessa. Zaz thinks I didn’t see it but her eyes are wet.

20h33: It’s all fun and games all these emotions but I have a precise goal here. So before lights are turned down, I scan the whole place to find my grrrrrrr…Johnny.

20h34: Right above us, there’s a balcony and a little blond girl swings. She looks like an angel. It seems…

20h35: I’m going to faint.

20h36: This child has Jack Sparrow’s blood in her vein, I’m positive.

20h37: Alright, she’s the spitting image of her mother.

20h38: I tell Zaz there’s Vanessa Paradis when she was 7 right above her.

20h39: With Zaz we just spotted Vanessa Junior’s little brother. Jack.

20h40: We’re aware that fantasizing on a four years old child is shady.

20h41: Ok, it’s liable to prison.

20h42: But he’s his father’s son, we should be able to get along in court, shouldn’t we?

20h43: I can’t help telling my neighbor that Vanessa’s kids are right above our heads.

20h44: Now the entire hall is aware that Johnny’s brood is right above our head.

20h45: Zaz tells me I could have more respect for Vanessa’s intimacy. She finds it very cute, these small ones waiting for their mum.

20h46: The issue is that I don’t buy the whole perfect woman, perfect mum and perfect spouse scenario. No matter how hard I try, I’m not moved. And sorry but I’m here to see an artist, not a mum, right now.

20h52: For sure Johnny is behind his offspring.

20h53: The man warns me that should I keep crushing him trying to see Johnny, he’ll puke the accras on me.

20h56: Lights are turned down. Everyone screams Vanessa’s name. That group hysteria is amazing. Too bad I’m not a fan. I’m not going to force myself though.

20h57: Screams are even louder.

20h58: Alright, it’s impressive.

20h59: I’m crying just to stick together with Zaz. That is so me.

21h00: Vanessa arrives with Matthieu Chedid.

21h01: She is very small and he is very tall. You’d think he wants everything to be soft around her. I think I understand why she gets on my nerves. It’s because she’s the kind of girls who’s prettier when they cry. And whom boys always want to comfort.

21h02: Just like my friend Béa in 9th grade.

21h06: When I was crying I was given a good slap in the back and told “cry more you’ll pee less”.

21h09: Fuck Vanessa is bringing back strong stuff from my past.

21h12: She’s singing Divinidylle.

21h14: Her voice is unsteady but she’s going for it. It’s annoying but I too want everything to be soft around her.

21h17: She sings “Dis lui toi que je t’aime”. I know it by heart.

21h19: Tandem too.

21h22: « Joooooooe, vas-yyyyyy Jooooooooooeeee !!! Vaaaaaaas, yyyyyyyyyyy, foooooooooooonce ! [1]» All those memories from my youth.

21h34: Zaz tells me it’s now clear I know all her repertory by heart.

21h45: She sings “Les revenants” from her last album. Her voice is deep, assured. I always knew that girl’s a diva.

21h55: “She sings well, doesn’t she?” I tell the man. “Oh yeay she’s got a nice ass!” he answers.

21h58: Lesson n°3 about marriage: once you’re married you don’t speak the same language.

22h00: Vanessa keeps looking at the balcony. I find the communion between the artist and the mother so beautiful. It reminds me an episode of Sissi when she throws herself into her daughter’s arms and all the bad Italians, who didn’t want her, scream “viva la mamma”.

22h02: The man asks why I’m weeping. He promises that even if she’s got an awesome ass, I am his own Grand Meaulnes.

22h04: I prefer not to tell him I’m crying because I’m a big bitter Italian and I feel like screaming “viva la mamma”.

22h23: In between two songs, small Jack yells “Mummy!”

22h25: Every mum in the hall is crying.

22h27: With Zaz, we cry too but it’s because we’ve had enough with accras.

22h35: It’s over. Vanessa comes back for two recalls. She says she loves us but with Zaz we both know she’s thinking of her Johnny. Her “because of the why“, as she says.

22h37: I warn the man he’d better not make fun and allude to the fact she might be on stuffs, it’s just not class.

22h40: Jack and Lili Rose applaud a lot.

22h42: When I think I was that close to break a family.

22h43: Come on Johnny, you can show yourself. I’m not even looking at you. Only, if I can… your…. Alright, I’m out.


[1] TN: Lyrics from “Joe le taxi”, one of Vanessa Paradis’ first famous song.


Vanessa, Johnny and me

Last week, my friend Zaz, the man and I went to Vanessa Paradis’ concert preview, in a small hall, not even in Paris. Right, I wish I could tell you it was thanks to my fame but I have to face the facts, I’m not yet in Universal’s listings. The truth is my friend Severine works in show-business and thus had the information about the preview. Then, we booked our ticket like everyone else and paid for them. We even had to book another show to get the right to attend this one. In Marne La Vallée. Right when we just sold our crappy car. But, you have to admit nothing’s too good to see Johnn… hum, Vanessa…

Come on, wanna read about it?

18h00: I rush out of work, tonight I have an appointment with Johnny Depp.

18h03: Ok, his wife will be there too but since she’ll be on stage, she shouldn’t disturb us too much.

18h06: Anyway, personally, Vanessa, I have nothing against her, right, but you see, right. I barely know her songs and I’ve always been a fan of Charlotte [1]. Actually I’m going to please my friend Zaz.

18h12: I warn the man that he can come but I won’t promise anything. I explain that sleeping with Jack Sparrow, is not being unfaithful.

18h15: The man answers he is willing to turn a blind eye if he can watch the rugby final together with Jef.

18h18: In fact a successful marriage is easy. You just have to make a few concessions here and there.

19h00: Off we go to Marne La Vallée. Vanessa performs at “La ferme du buisson [2]“.  Mmmm, Johnny, I hope you’re not allergic to hay because, you and I, we’ll have some all over, believe me…

19h04: My friend Zaz is very moved, it’s the fourteenth time she sees Vanessa.

19h06: Zaz warns me she won’t sit next to me if I allude one more time to the fact that Vanessa must be on stuff to be that skinny.

19h10: I don’t care what she’s on, I tell her. I’m just sad for Johnny, that’s it. With me he wouldn’t have all those worries.

19h45: We find La Ferme du Buisson. So much for hay, my dear Johnny. It’s an old market hall, very nice, made of bricks. There are small lights everywhere, you’d think you were in Le Grand Meaulnes[3]. I find it very poetic. I hug the man and tell him, never mind Johnny, he’s my ‘grand Meaulnes’.

19h50: The man answers he’s hungry.

19h55: Marriage actually is bullshit.

19h57: The man doesn’t see how five waffles and ten choux buns eaten during our way to Marne La Vallée could put him off his food. He says travels make him hungry.

20h00: People are already waiting in line to enter the hall and get a good spot. The public is really fan, I can feel it. Poor Johnny, he must feel completely discredited.

20h03: The man warns that if we don’t first find something to eat, he will hold his breath.

20h05: We resuscitate the man who’s always been short-winded and we drop the idea of being in the front row. Direction: the refreshment area.

20h06: The man is too happy, for 10 euros he gets a complete meal. With Zaz we start a nervous breakdown.

20h08: On the menu there are accras.

20h09: The man never managed to digest accras.

20h12: With Zaz we try to find a way to leave the man behind.

20h15: The man has eaten half of the buffet. We can finally enter the hall. We find spaces in the front but on the side. I feel Zaz will take some time to forgive that accras event.

20h18: I tell Zaz that making a preview concert with M [4] playing guitar is class.

20h20: Zaz, she says it’s normal for Vanessa since she sucks Johnny’s dick every day.

20h22: We both agree this is truly class.

20h24: In full digestion, the man opens a baleful eye and says he ok to be called Johnny if it can help.

20h26: Zaz answers that his having a chewing-gum could help.

To be continued…


[1] TN: Charlotte Gainsbourg

[2] TN: ‘The bush farm’

[3] TN: Novel by French author Alain Fournier.

[4] TN: Stage name for Matthieu Chedid, a French musician

My Pantene day…

Well, well, well… For a start, the final pictures are not yet available as it must be a total surprise for the viewing day. But Barbara, the one and only, kindly sent me pictures from the making-off – how class is that? – Some illustrate this article

Come on, here’s what happened next…

Monday evening

20h00: I’m hesitating. Do I wash my hair tonight to get there with my personality at its best or I leave it totally free-style so that the hair dresser has room for enhancement?

20h02: The man is of the opinion that I’d rather wash them tomorrow to have faith in myself. He also says it will look cleaner.

20h04: The man doesn’t understand free style at all.

23h00: Yet I’m super scared, fortunately I’m doing this for a humanitarian cause.

23h12: Let’s hope my nails will be long enough for a manicure.

Tuesday morning…

07h30: The man wakes me up with a weird face. He doesn’t stop shivering with cold because of hot water which is not running from our tap this morning.

07h34: I’m trying not to interpret this hard blow as a bad omen. On the other hand, no way I’m washing my hair with a 12°C water. Sebastien will see my personality right away: dirty.

07h45: After a 14 seconds cold shower to wash the essential – below the waist, in short – I see myself in the mirror.

07h47: It is said that, after 30, you grow old by stages, all of a sudden.

07h48: Too bad, my stage was last night.

07h50: The man assures I don’t look 10 years older than yesterday. He says I just look tired. He says styes are not helping.

07h56: I realise my brows are a mess and I don’t recall Barbara mentioning waxing.

08h00: I don’t dare calling her to ask. Even if she admires me for my humanitarian courage, I yet fear she’ll find I’m going to far asking for my brow to be trimmed.

08h12: Whatever, I do it on my own.

08h14: I have one brow twice bigger than the other but at least it’s neat. My hair is greasy but my brows are trimmed, one makes up for the other. Or maybe not.

11h00: I’m struggling to concentrate at work. Honestly, what I’m about to do is so militant that all these people seems small to me…

17h00: I escape and take the underground to Colonel Fabien station. I feel like telling every woman I pass I’m about to fight for her. They all are my sisters.

17h03: I feel like singing Julie Pietri.

18h00: I’m in front of the studio, in an inner courtyard. I’m beginning to be super scared. Maybe they’re thinking I’m younger. And slimmer. And that my hair is lighter too. Well, I mean blonde on the top of my head as my daughter would say. I don’t feel like throwing myself with all my might into the arena. I’m fat, ugly and I want to g…

18h01: “Hi Caroline, how are you? I’m Barbara, nice to meet you”. Shit, Barbara hurtled from nowhere as I was about to go. When it comes to diversity, she’s out of the league, that’s for sure. I wondering why she’s not the model for the shooting, it’s simple, that girl is a candy. Pretty AND kind.

18h02: Pretty, just like ALL girls in the studio.

18h04: Which is just like in movies. With umbrellas that must be used for something related to light. A white wall. A glass roof. Music in the background. And… ahhhhhh ! A hair fan. You’d think you were in « Un Dos Tres » the sitcom on M6 with Penelope Cruz’s sister.

18h05: On a stool, Caroline Daily is being photographed. With 12cm heels and a dress so small I could use it as a cardigan. She’s holding a crazy pose with a leg upright. Wow. She’s been doing this all her life or what?

18h07: Mlle E. is having her makeup done. In a pink Carrie Bradshaw dress to die for. Size 8 because size 10 is too big for her, she explains.

18h08: Where’s diversity?

18h10: Now I get it.

18h11: I AM the diversity. On my own I pull up the age and weight average.

18h14: Barbara feels I’m panicky. She holds me out a plate of macarons. They’re not from Ladurée but it doesn’t matter.

18h16: I kind of feel that eating macarons will not help me feel better in my too low-necked black dress. Anyway, what’s done is done.

18h18: Sébastien, the hair and makeup artist, is done with Mlle E., it’s my turn. He has me climb on a huge chair to wash my hair. I apologise for the state of my mane and explain for the hot water that stood me up right this morning.

18h19: It’s crazy, him too! Same issue, he had to shower at the studio. We look at each other and laugh. So much complicity could make me cry. I know I hold on to him like a buoy. But he’s the only one who’s not wearing a killer pink dress, so it creates bonds.

18h22: Sébastien says he wants to go easy on makeup. Now I’m reassured.

18h23: He massages my scalp and it makes me think of my friend Julie who told me one day she had an orgasm like this. So I pray it won’t happen to me. Emotional as I am, that would be embarrassing.

18h25: I don’t want to leave the shampoo area

18h26: I will never make fun of Julie anymore.

18h27: Sébastien agrees to a light messy blow-dry, Emmanuelle Seigner’s style. For my face, he will use only concealer.

18h29: In my opinion, Caroline Daily’s personality was not worked on with concealer.

18h32: Sébastien says it would be surprising that my getting old stage happened last night. Yet he spends loads of time on my lion wrinkle.

18h34: Sébastien says he wants light eye makeup too. He explains that I have light eyes but small with a slightly sagging eyelid and too much eyeliner could have an opposite effect to the one we want. I say I agree even if the sagging eyelid doesn’t have me jump for joy.

18h38: A young lady does my nails while Sebastien gives character to my hair personality. I’m hysterical, she has black red. She says “garnet”. But it’s the same. She says my nails are fine even if they grow askew. Something tells me the askew part is not so great but at this point it doesn’t make much difference.

18h41: I hate my eyelid. Until now, I hadn’t noticed them, but now I see nothing but this, they sag, these sluts.

18h43: I look at myself in the mirror. In your face, getting old stage. Sebastien is a magician, he gave the 10 years from last night a real hard time. Sebastien says I’m pretty. And, I don’t know why, but I believe him. Well that’s right, there was huge room for improvement but now seriously I feel ready to roar in front of the camera. Come on, there we go, hair fan and all.

18h50: I’m going out of the dressing room and I don’t feel like doing this anymore in fact.

18h52: Nicolas, the photographer, arrives. He is 14, maybe 20 years old, maximum. He has a mocking look.

18h54: I prefer to sit for a start. I warn him, not a chance I’ll lift my leg.

18h56: Nicolas shows me the first pictures on his camera.

18h57: I will never allow any picture of me sitting.

18h58: I suggest going behind a white stand in order to hide the ten rolls I just saw on the pictures. I lean forward and decide to bet on my breasts. Taking the risk of being vulgar. Being vulgar is better than bulging out.

19h00: I check the result on the camera. I might have bet on my breasts too much.

19h02: I smile as much as I can. I tell myself if not pretty I’ll look friendly. Poor Pantene guys, they will regret the diversity idea.

19h05: Nicolas is super kind. He guides me and cheers me up. He says I don’t have to smile. He asks me to do again that look. He says he likes that one because it shows I don’t have to smile to seduce. I tell myself he is a good photographer, from all of his fifteen years of age.

19h30: Nicolas asks if I want to try with the hair fan.

19h34: I’m unstoppable, I want to marry the fan.

19h39: On the pictures, it looks like Bonnie Tyler.

19h45: Nicolas says he’s got it all.

20h00: I leave after a dance with Barbara on Rita Mitsuko and kissing everyone goodbye. I have no idea what it will come to but truly, I did it. I did it [1]and actually, it doesn’t mean nothing.


Edit: amongst the bloggers, there are Garance, Anne-So, Caroline Daily, Mlle E, Dietcoke, Géraldine et Cé. Sorry for the ones I’m forgetting, let me know and I’ll put your name as well…

Edit2: A big thank you to the whole team for their kindness and gentleness.

Edit3: The first to say something unkind about my green cowboy boots will be sulked.


[1] TN: in English in the original text.

The day I threw myself with all my might into women’s cause

Right, I have to tell you about the crazy afternoon I spent last week. The few hours during which I thought I was a Pop Star candidate getting a makeover, a Cinderella – a bit oldish Cinderella right – or even a candidate for one of those TV shows “I decided to give a boost to my hair salon while slimming down to become a star”. Long story short, last week, I had a meeting with… myself. Myself but wearing fancy makeup, with a hairdo and a manicure. Then I’ve been shot from every angle by a photographer. A professional photographer.

I know, it sounds like a fairy tale for desperate housewives.

Yet, there was a long way to go.

For you to understand better, I have to explain. And warn you straight away, I acted against my sacrosanct principles as I agreed to take part in a marketing event. Let’s not beat around the bush and call Chabal a sex on leg.

But I had my reasons, I sweaaaaaaaaar. Come on, wanna read about it?

A Monday, ten days ago or so…

12h00: I receive an email from a certain Barbara “Good day Caroline. I’m in charge of the new Pantene campaign and you came to our mind for a special event. Pantene is renewing its image and wants to feature women from every horizons, who dare to be women in every sense of the word. The idea is to work with people who assert themselves to show feminine beauty in all its diversity. Yourself and fourteen other bloggers have been selected and will thus have your makeup done, your hair styled and be photographed, everything in a real studio. A private viewing of the pictures, touched up by a graphic designer, will then take place in a Parisian gallery. Would you be in?”

12h02: Never. Not a chance I’ll be in an ad for shampoo. No but who do they think I am? I’m not for sale, Madam.

12h03: “Dear Barbara, I am very touched by your proposal but I am sorry, my ethics does not allow me to…”

12h04: Right, but, somehow it’s political that stuff.

12h05: I’m saying no to a hyper subversive campaign, shit.

12h06: When my public will learn I refused to lend my image to an advert defending women in their diversity, I fear deception will be too weak a word.

12h08: What’s the issue? I’m lacking guts here. Where’s the warrior, the Amazone ready for any war? No, here I’m hiding behind my middle-class morals not to stick my neck out. I disappoint myself. Come on girl, say no to comfort and put yourself in danger.

12h10: I call the man to inform him I’ve decided to throw myself with all my might into a fight for women respect.

12h12: The man can’t see the link between Rosa Luxembourg and Pantene.

12h15: “Dear Barbara, Thank you for thinking of me. I’m forcing myself to accept this proposal because limelight and I don’t really get along. But I’m not thinking of me currently, I’m thinking of those thousands despoiled women around the world whom I want to pay tribute to. You can count on me”

12h16: “Dear Barbara, hum, will we have a manicure done as well, or else?

13h00: “Ok Caroline, meeting-up is set for Tuesday 18h00, studio Zappa, Paris 19eme. Regarding the manicure, the answer is yes”

13h01: Tuesday. Tuesday is too far, I will never hold out, I’m too looking forward to throwing myself with all my might into my fight for women. It’s amazing how enhancive it is to forget yourself for a cause that’s bigger than you.

13h02: I hope they’ll have ‘Rouge Noir’ from Chanel.

13h03: Tuesday is tomorrow.

13h04: Throwing myself with all my might into my fight for women with those 5 extra kilos on the hips is out of question. I’m prepared to put women’s honor before my pride but actually, no.

13h05: I also have a pimple on the chin ‘cause I have my period.

13h12: And conjunctivitis symptoms as well. A complete package. When it comes to diversity, Pantene guys won’t be disappointed.

16h00: I explain to my boss I ABSOLUTELY need half a day off tomorrow because of an unexpected humanitarian event.

16h03: Big boss agrees but he says there’s no shame in suffering from a stye, if I’m going to the ophthalmologist I can say so.

16h15: Regarding my outfit, I decide I will play it super basic a bit like Angelina Jolie when she puts herself in danger in Darfour. Anyway, the outside doesn’t count, it’s the inside fight.

16h30: On the other hand, I think it’s important to show my breasts a bit and my little black dress will be perfect.

16h32: Moreover, it’s the only one that fits taking into account the small extra kilos issue.

19h30: Barbara tells me in an email that I need to call Sebastien to explain how I see my hairdo and introduce myself in order for him to discover my personality and enhance it through my hair.

19h32: Actually, my personality, currently, it’s mainly the kind who has at least 3cm long dark roots. Greasy on top of that, in relation with my period.

19h35: I mumble a voice message to Sebastien, I want my hair totally free and the idea is to be in communion with women’s cause. Basic and simple. Well now, if he insists, the pictures of Emmanuelle Seigner for Gap’s campaign are not super far from the essence of my personality which is truly willing to be enhanced.

19h40: I don’t want to go anymore. I don’t really see how Sebastien, who’s also a makeup artist, will manage to enhance my conjunctivitis.

20h00: I send an email to two other bloggers who will too throw themselves with all their might into the fight for diversity to tell them I’m not sure about the personality enhancement stuff.

20h02:Take it easy sweaty, don’t you see we’ll have a free manicure? “ answers G.

To be continued…

I don’t have abs, only glutes

Well well well, on Saturday, I took advantage that my parents were in Paris to leave my kids with them and go for a trial session at Club Med gym next door. When I say I couldn’t get up afterwards, it’s only slightly exaggerated. Since then I’m discovering parts of my body I didn’t even know about. Let alone my neck which is now definitely stuck, it apparently replaced my abs for most of the class. The only part that is not aching is my belly. Work that one out for yourself…

Want to read about it?

9h00: I wake up in a possessed state. Today, I’m doing sport. I shake the man to share my decision with him.

9h02: Now that he’s awake he has plenty ideas for physical exercise.

9h04: I rebuff him and explain that I don’t want to waste my energy with a calories inefficient activity.

9h06: I check the timetable for abs & glutes classes at Club Med gym. There’s one at 13h30. That’s it, I’m in. The man too, apparently it’s better when you’re with someone.

9h07: The man doesn’t feel like it.

9h08: I threaten the man to show pix from our latest beach holiday on the TV screen.

9h10: The man makes me swear I’ll empty my memory card and agrees reluctantly.

9h12: The man wants to know when we’ll eat.

9h14: I’m disappointed to see how he doesn’t take a step back when it comes to food. We’ll see, I say.

9h16: The man says he might want to take a step back on our marriage.

9h19: I warn the man that should he call me Davina[1] yet another time I’ll slap him across the face.

13h25: We are late for the abs & glutes class only because Laser Saber has eating disorders and wanted to have fried potatoes before leaving.

13h35: We’re already exhausted when we get to torture room #3. Everyone is already at work, it seems quite serious. The trainer is super well-built. I hide behind a pillar.

13h40: I changed my mind, I want to leave.

13h42: It is confirmed, fried potatoes are not easy to digest.

13h43: The trainer says tighten our abs.

13h45: I can’t find them.

13h47: I am not equipped for abs & glutes.

13h49: However hard I search, I find only the glutes.

13h50: The man has a strange way to straighten his legs. To my mind, he will get a remark from the teacher. Poor thing. Moreover, Mr. Muscle is checking me out so much it’s becoming embarrassing.

13h51: We’re lying on our side and we have to lift a leg a bit like a dog. The idea to come with the man was crap. I will never see him the same way. Neither he actually.

13h52: The word pain doesn’t mean anything anymore.

13h53: I swap an abs & glutes class for twelve childbirths. Without epidural. At least at the end you get a baby as a reward. Here nothing.

13h54: Still, I’m quite proud of myself, I handle things quite well.

13h55: « Not on your back, on your side! Otherwise it’s useless », the teacher yells. How bold is that? On your back to work out your glutes! Why not on a couch? It’s wearing to be pulled down by unables.

13h56: « NOT ON YOUR BACK! »

13h57: No but the worst is that the interested person doesn’t correct her mistake. Shame on her, the teacher has to stop the class to help her get the right position. We’re wasting time here. I’m so pissed off, I was flat out!

13h58: Shit he walks towards the man. Poor thing, he will never get over this humiliation. All his virility is at stake. He will need to be comforted. He sends me desperate looks and tries to make me understand something. I think he says he loves me … or wait… c’mon, you’re so silly, not here I’m not going t… What, hum, who’s pushing me like this?

13h59: Oops, it seems that, by mistake, I didn’t realise I was on my back, my bad.

14h00: At least in that position I wasn’t crying. No because now I just want to make sure it’s not Guantanamo.

14h01: “Stay on your side, my lady in blue over there, don’t roll on your back otherwise you might as well stay home”

14h02: He’s getting on my nerves now. I didn’t ask for personal training.

14h03: “and if you’re struggling, you can follow your neighbor’s example, he manages very well!”

14h04: The man shows off like never, he’s so much on his side that he’s almost on his belly, what a jerk. I can’t stand him anymore.

14h05: “One last series, this time we stay ten seconds on our forearm and we lift our left leg. Then the right.”

14h06: Would he calm down, Ravi Shankar? I didn’t choose a fakir class. Where are the pedalos? I want to ride a pedalo. Good old pedalos, not too complicated, right? My forearm is going to die, for sure.

14h07: The man says I disturb everyone with my sighs.

14h08: “Go fuck yourself, Davina”, I answer.

14h10: The class is over. My marriage too in my opinion.


[1]TN: Veronique and Davina are two fitness trainers, famous for their TV show “Gym Tonic” in the 80s. They are now considered as slightly has-been.

Emmanuelle ? This is me (finale)

14h45: I go back to Fabrice, my face’s entirely orange. He wanted color, he certainly got it.

14h47: I apologize to Fabrice for the ladder in my tights. I ask him to avoid taking pictures of my left leg.

14h49: Fabrice proposes we take five more minutes to change my tights.

14h50: I answer I don’t have any others.

14h52: In fact I have many in my drawer.

14h54: the issue lies more around my boots. It took me forty-five minutes to put them on. Per boot. After greasing my tights. And breaking 3 nails. Alright, I even cried.

14h56: Not a chance I take them off.

14h57: Even under the knife, I won’t confess to being stuck in my boots to a professional photographer.

14h58: Fabrice who really is a perfect man reassures me. Photoshop will help hide everything.

15h00: We start with a session on the couch. Fabrice asks me to look at the window while turning my face towards him.

15h01: I do the exact opposite.

15h02: Fabrice as a strained smile. I think he begins to understand the extent of the damage.

15h03: I explain to Fabrice that I’m bad with coordination and so we’d better start with simple instructions. By “simple”, I mean one at a time.

15h04: Fabrice uses twice as much gentleness and tells me the most important is to smile.

15h06: Fabrice explains that it’s even better to open your mouth slightly when you smile.

15h07: I prefer dying rather than showing my teeth.

15h09: Fabrice cracks a crappy joke and I open my month. Damn, he is too good.

15h11: I strike a completely natural pose without my free will knowing. Fabrice shoots and tells me I am “super cute”. I’m too proud, I smile so widely it looks stupid.

15h12: I’m starting to love it.

15h14: The flashing camera makes me feel weird, I’m almost excited.

15h17: Something really strong is happening, I can feel it.

15h20: There’s only him and me, I give him a lot right now

15h23: I play with the lens like I’m so used to it.

15h26: It’s incredible, I have it in my blood. Fabrice doesn’t stop shooting. I think that is magic. Something very simple yet very complicated.

15h30: Right now, if he asked me to undress, I would do it. Just like that, a sort of offering.

15h32: But he’s not asking.

15h33: It doesn’t matter, we are beyond nudity, I think I’m actually making love to the lens.

15h33: I just pushed my son out of the camera’s field.

15h35: It’s time for us to stop, Fabrice and I are losing our points of reference.

15h37: Fabrice seems in a hurry to leave, I think he is scared by what we just went through. It’s too much at once, poor thing.

15h40: I don’t even have time to say goodbye before he disappears. It’s delicate, a man…

Edit: To see the picture, you’ll have to buy “Bien dans ma vie” because I don’t want to put my face on the Net. Moreover, the pictures have a copyright, at least while the magazine isn’t yet available.

Edit 2: The pictures, I have to say, did impress me. I think this kind of photo shoot should be a sort of therapy. Because after a while, I swear, you forget you don’t like yourself.

Edit 3: I want to point out that I didn’t actually undress. That’s for the man who sometimes is very “literal”.