Friday, March 12, 2010

Psyche in a Dress

You guys know the myth of Eros and Psyche, right? No? Well, here you go. YA writer Francesca Lia Block also has retold it. If you're wondering if there are plenty of skinny beautiful girls, rock gods, and gauzy vintage dresses...yes. Yes, there are. Here's her version:

Francesca Lia Block: "Psyche was born, the most beautiful mortal ever known. EVER."

Sadako: "Um, what about Helen of Troy?"

FLB: "Try to speak a little louder, I'm a trifle deaf in this ear.

"Psyche's gorgeous. Her dad has issues (he's had her mother and sisters killed more than once). And he's a director who has her star in movies where she's topless."

Sadako: "So she's Asia Argento?"

FLB: "Her dad is dating Aphrodite, who wants him to put her in his films, but he only wants to make movies with Psyche."

Sadako: "Aphrodite, the mother of Psyche's future lover Eros? Ew, Aphrodite and Psyche's dad will get married and their kids will be horrible freaks with pink skin, no overbites, and five fingers on each hand!"

FLB: "One day, a dark lover comes to Psyche's side. She never sees what he looks like, but she loves him and he loves her. Then her sisters come to her, wearing black dresses and sunglasses, criticizing--"

Sadako: "Her sisters? You mean, her sisters whom she mentioned her father killing on page one?"

FLB: "Yes."

Sadako: "Just checking."

FLB: "They come and tell her that Psyche is in love with a monster and that she cannot trust him. She tries to see who he is that night and he's gorgeous! He gets pissed at her for not trusting him."

Eros: "Don't look at me. DON'T LOOK AT ME!"

FLB: "Psyche's father puts her in a film with a guy called Narcissus. And then she dates a rock god called Orpheus who lost his girlfriend Eurydice tragically. Orpheus has dark hair, pale skin--"

Sadako: "Is too thin and has dark circles under his eyes? Sweet, FLB sexy boy bingo!"

FLB: "But Psyche couldn't be with Orpheus. She could not give herself up. Or the chance at her god, her real love, Eros."

Sadako: "What IS it with Eros? Does he have Yoplait flavored balls or what?"

FLB: "Then Psyche's sisters told her that Orpheus was dating the Maenad, a crazy rock singer, and they did heroin together...and then Orpheus died."

Sadako: "Considering death's track record, I'm not seeing the tragedy."

FLB: "But the Maenad has a terrible story, too! She had a sad childhood where her father told her she was a dirty slut and wouldn't buy her the Malibu Barbie dreamhouse even though her special pixie friend Mab wanted it--oh wait, wrong story. Anyway, the Maenad played guitar and wrote poetry to keep from cutting herself. She danced at rock shows and met Orpheus.

"But she was always afraid he still had a thing for Eurydice and knew that the only way to be sure that he loved her was to do something terrible. Something...Dionysian."

Sadako: "She made him OD on heroin?"

FLB: "Or something. Then Psyche meets Hades at a concert downtown and they make love in his home, an old Victorian building."

Sadako: "What what WHAT?"

FLB: "Hades is decadent and sexy. He owns tattoo parlors, and BDSM type clothing stores, and promotes clubs, and he's brilliant and dark and deliciously Byronic, feeds her pomegranate seeds and she feels her soul sucked by him, and she's not sure she can let him in but she wants to, and...ohhhhhhh, god, yes, he's so sexy."

Sadako: "Uh. Should I come back when you've had a chance to, um...freshen up?"

FLB: "Psyche and Hades dance and go to the beach and it's frightfully romantic until Hades stops having sex with Psyche. Psyche begins to feel insecure."

Psyche: "Is it me? I'm fashionably thin and waif-like. Is it you? Were you molestered?"

Hades: "SHUT UP! Just...SHUT UP! You're not my mom! I mean, no, definitely not. Maybe I'm just tired of fucking you."

Psyche: "We other stuff."

Hades: "Girl on top? Hoo yeah!"

FLB: "And it turns out that Hades was a sweet little boy who grew up on a farm seeing animals being born and dying, marveling at the circle of life. But he wet his bed and his mom put him in diapers till age twelve and his dad liked to compare penis sizes.

"Hades' mother hated that his father looked at Hades with lust in his eyes. So she did the logical thing, beating him and locking him in the chokey till Hades ran away from home. Hades began to wear eyeliner and change his hair color, listen to loud music, set off fireworks in the desert, and tattoo himself."

Sadako: "Hades is the annoying emo kid I knew sophomore year of high school?"

FLB: "Hades and Psyche have been having lots of kinky sex that sucks the life force out of her. Hm, note to self, ask editor to come up with more mystical way of putting it.

"Psyche's rib is dislocated and her chakra is out of sorts. She goes home one morning and her mother is in the lobby of her building."

Sadako: "Her WHAT--forget it. You know what? Forget it. Getting this story to make sense is like trying to figure out when Big Love jumped the shark."

Psyche's Mom: "Don't date the God of Hell. He's terrible."

Psyche: "It's...complicated, OK? You don't understand everything! After all, you walked out on me! I don't need to listen to you!"

Psyche's Mom: "I bought you a lacey vintage white dress that you can pair with pink boots."

Psyche: *Sob* "Mama, can you hear me? Mama can you see me? Mama can you find me in the night..."

FLB: "Psyche went on living with Hades but realized she couldn't go on like this. Especially since her mother had an adorable whitewashed cottage by the sea. Every six months, she would go back to Hades, then return to her mother Demeter again--"

Sadako: "Uh, nice lady? Did you ever actually read any mythology?"

FLB: "When I was anorexic, my boyfriend and I would smoke opium on the open sunporch, where he'd read aloud Ovid and I'd think of my dying father as my stomach growled like a cat in the night."

Sadako: "That's a no then."

FLB: "One day, Psyche started working for her dad's girlfriend Aphrodite who now owns a clothing boutique where she sells gorgeous vintage dresses.

"Aphrodite's angry and jealous and hate filled and works poor Psyche like a dog and hurls cats at her when people try to tell her that her dresses aren't elegant.

"Then one day Psyche's all sad, so Aphrodite feels bad for her. She gives her a book that Psyche reads, and she realizes that it's just like her life. Psyche writes to the publisher and it turns out the guy who wrote it was her lover Eros. They have sex for a few months and then he leaves.

"Also, it turns out that Aphrodite set up the meeting between Eros and Psyche, then told Eros that Psyche was a manipulative man eater. And Eros believes her when Psyche lights the candle to look at him. Aphrodite did the whole thing out of jealousy of Psyche and fear of losing her little boy.

"But wait! Psyche's pregnant and the child is called Joy. Joy grows up to love Hades, too--"

Sadako: "Ew, ew, ew..."

FLB: "Or, um, not Hades, but her own evil but sexy hell god. And then Joy leaves Hades because this is something every girl has to go through. Psyche and Joy make a performance art movie starring Joy. And at the indie film festival--"

Sadako: "Roger Ebert is so inspired by it that he shakes off his paralysis to rise up and declare it the worst film since the Frank from Donnie Darko/Brown Bunny cross over?

FLB: "Eros returns and he and Psyche are old but they've still got it going on and they...reconnect. Fin."

Worst Eros and Psyche retelling ever.