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  • Writer's pictureBella Ve

I didn't meet the LOML @ Ludlow House

I, Bella, have been to Ludlow House a few times now so I know the drill -- ring the doorbell, tell the pretty girl at the front your name, wait for her to find you on the list, be directed to the elevator but take the stairs anyways, hesitate to enter the room, but lock eyes with Hailo and know that now it’s too late to go back. 

The event was called “Annotate to Date,” hosted in collaboration between Blasé Raire and Hot Literati. It was officially a speed dating event, unofficially an effort to “put myself out there more” even though on that night I very much wanted to put myself in bed. 

I was instructed to bring my favorite book, put it down on a pool table which served as our “library,” and write the name of the book on a “Hello My Name Is” tag. We were then told to mingle around, and if we wanted to keep the conversation going, check each other out via paper slip in brought book. 

Besides the fact that I could never pick a favorite, and also fearing that whatever I chose would either be too pretentious or too low brow, I decided to bring my comfort book, “It’s Kind of a Funny Story.” It is not a funny story, as several of my fellow speed-daters soon learn. I’m explaining the plot for the fifth time (about a teenage boy who calls the suicide hotline one night and gets admitted into the adult psych ward because the juvenile one is currently under construction) and I’m wishing I would’ve brought my pretentious book instead (it’s what Kafka would’ve wanted). Hailo’s friend Blake, whose show was the subject of our first ever meet-up says, “Vizzini, right?” I’m elated and astounded -- that they would (1) know the book, and (2) know the author. Vizzini, right. 


After that, I’ve warmed up, and I’m introduced to Lina, a Hot Literati reader and filmmaker. By some cosmic force of nature we immediately connect on a shared love for Lana Del Rey and the pursuit of persona building. Lina points out Lana has committed to the bit of being “Lana” so well that she won’t even tour in her home state of New York, preferring heartland American cities like Louisville and Charelston. 

James tells me about the exercise of daily writing and the practice of never repeating yourself. I regret being unable to attend a 12 hour write-a-thon with the Olive Tree Writing Club, but promise him, and mostly myself, to attend the next one. 


Abbey of Blasé Raire picks up a post-it note conversation starter that the team has left around the room, and we talk about our least favorite trends. Mine are jorts, (those huge, knee length jean shorts) only because I can foresee them having a dramatically short stint in the trend cycle, and know that by the end of next summer they will look painfully out of fashion. Abbey says cow print for the same reasons. 

I returned home with a few Instagrams and several new book recommendations. No dates but lots of mental notes. Glad to have put myself out there.


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