hanne lydia
 

Man Basic


The commercial was frequently shown on television.  It showed well-trained young men walking down the catwalk wearing nothing but pants. I liked the simple logo in black and red on the white pants. I wanted to buy my husband one as a present.  He takes medium size. I went to many department stores, the pants were on sale. In every store  they had to admit they were sold out of pants. I spent many hours going from shop to shop, I seemed to be possessed.  In the end I found a shop at the railway station. I asked for these particular pants in the wanted size.  The shop assistant brought them immediately, my reaction was a bit over-enthusiastic

 

 

The glasses


It happened on a travel in Portugal. It was the first time that I visited the country. I did not go alone. We hired a car, arrived in Coimbra. We decided to stay there for the night. We put up at a modest hotel next to Hotel Oslo. We could have our breakfast there. We enjoyed the evening in Coimbra, eating and drinking a lot. Quite accidentally we found a Fado club in a side street. There were many tourists there – but also skilful Fado singers. Especially one distinguished himself, a little man with a big moustache. Later that night we saw him in the bar at the top of Hotel Oslo. There he sat alone, having some breathing space. I wanted to say hello, but he called that he was married and showed us a ring. Early next morning I went into town alone. I had eaten breakfast in Hotel Oslo and my travelling companion was sleeping it off. My only thought was of sunglasses. Large, expensive sunglasses. The price did not matter. Preferably Gucci. I looked all over Coimbra, in the end I found a pair of Chanel glasses. The shop assistant had to run to another shop to find a hard case with a Chanel logo. I returned to the hotel room with large, dark, sunglasses that misted over on my nose. They are the most expensive glasses I have ever bought.

 

 

Man

 

I had been in love with him a long time without being aware of it. He was nothing for me, they said. He invited me to a party at the house of our mutual friends. I felt enormously restless without understanding why. We had champagne for breakfast the next morning, sitting four at the table. I surprised myself by saying I was in love with him. He said the same.  Our friends were embarrassed.  We stayed two days in their flat. They went about their daily routine, we were in a haze.  They kept giving us irritated looks, but said nothing. On Monday morning we finally left. We were a couple.  The pants were his suggestion. They were well-worn, the cotton fabric was fleecy after repeated washing. It was the first time I wore his underwear.

 

 

Mensen, Oslo City


My sister and I had spent the whole evening in bars. We had wine but could not go home. It was night. We were hanging about near a grey office building. A young man passed by, we asked for a light. We asked him if he wanted to drink wine. He said yes immediately. We hailed a taxi and got the wine, my sister ran in. In the young man’s apartment I noticed the T-shirt at once. I asked him to give it to me as a present. He took it off immediately.  Little by little he fell asleep.  My sister and I went to my studio. We were awake the whole night, it was the eight of March. We marched in the parade through town. Wet snow was falling. We tried in vain to light candles, which went out in the wet snow while we were calling out slogans.  We marched under a banner reading  “No to violence against women.”

 

 

The long black gloves

 

For a party many years ago I bought a pair of long black gloves. The dress I wore was tight and sleeveless with a seducing leopard pattern. At the party I got into conversation with a pompous author who now is very well-known. He said that he had seen me before. I lied and said that he probably had, I used to be a model. He accepted my answer without protest. I was surprised. In my neighbourhood there live many women who wear black clothes where only the eyes are barely visible. I see them every day. The women are like sharp, black contrasts. When they gesticulate I can sometimes catch a glimpse of the arms covered with long black gloves. They look similar to my own gloves lying unused in the underwear drawer. My gloves have a small logo where it is written Issue.

 

 

Go home


For many years I had difficulty going home. Always was the last one to leave. Who walked in the middle of the street at midnight wearing a miniskirt. Who went home with strangers. The one who stayed after the others. Who stayed until daylight and people went to church. Sometimes even longer. Who got heartbeat when I approached. Who was sitting for hours outside my own front door not wanting to go inside. Who always wanted to have more, always wanted more because it postpones. Who had my horoscope cast where it said I was going to be lost. Who chose a detour. Who carried this in my pocket every time I went out.

 

 

SNOOPY


I was travelling in the north of the country to visit my parents. It was autumn, November. I was accompanied by my husband and my son. We had many late dinners with wine round the table. After an evening like that we were to meet for lunch in a café with a view of the harbour. The café was situated in a big shopping centre. A very well-known chain-store always has underwear on sale. I strayed in, quickly bought several pairs of panties. I picked those which  immediately caught my attention. Afterwards we met to have a meal. I took out my shopping from plastic bags with big red logos. It felt a little strange to show these garments in the café. They were bought for other reasons than being used. Later I tried them on to see if  I might wear them. They pricked and gnawed in places where underwear should not.

 

 

The French panties

 

I wanted a pair of panties from a shop selling sex toys. Finally I chose a pair with a French slit, I thought they would be easy to find. Shops like this one is spread all over town.  I decided on a shop near by. It was raining heavily. On the discreet shop door a note said that the shop owner was away for the moment. I had to find other shops. One had closed down, the others were shut. In the end I found a shop just by my son’s school. I was afraid some of the other parents would see me enter. In the shop window sexy underwear for men and women was displayed on plastic torsos. The shop assistant was young and spoke a North-Norwegian dialect.  I was soaking wet.  I stated my errand, then selected a simple black model. When leaving I got a thick product catalogue into the bargain. That I gave a newly separated friend as a present. He and his wife were later reconciled.

 

 

The Boxer shorts

 

He says they are made of silk, but I do not believe him. They are blue, loose. He never wears them. When I ask him where they come from, he says that they have been given as a gift from an ex. He does not say from whom. Is it therefore he never wears them.

 

 

Sloggi and Chanel, the terrorists

 

I have for many years had a pair of panties of the brand Sloggi. I never wear them. They are high-waisted, cover the navel. They were too tight. They are bigger than the others in the drawer. When you put them over your head  they cover almost anything. I consider that a quality. When studying in Stockholm I got a camera from my father. It was best in test. It has a self-timer formed as a small remote control device. This way I can take pictures alone with myself. Once the camera’s batteries were so worn that the self-timer worked badly. I constantly had to bend forward to get contact. When I collected the pictures they were different from what I had expected. I looked like a terrorist.

 

 

The women


The origin was something else. It was another project. It chose its own form. On the buildings in town there were large billboards showing women in underwear. Often. Women almost naked, longing to be taken. I wanted a pair of panties as a gift. They were black with some lace. Just then panties were supposed to be high-waisted. When I put them on I did not look like the women on the walls at all. The panties hurt. They were too tight. I put them over my head. As if attempting to alter this fact. In the mirror I looked like a woman wearing a veil.  Something happened. I was one of them.

 

 

The story


He wanted me to tell the story. The story about the eclipse of the moon. We were standing on her roof terrace, my female friend and I. The eclipse of the moon was mentioned in all newspapers, it was supposed to take place just after two o’clock at night. Our husbands had gone inside and were sitting in the living-room. She brought some cognac in small metal cups.  We stood looking at the moon which distinctly disappeared. I started talking about him out of the blue. This was the first time I told her about him. He was our mutual friend. We had been flirting for years. We were both in other relationships. We had not seen each other for several years, but had met again some weeks ago at a fortieth birthday party. I said I was thinking about him, could not get him out of my thoughts. She caught my eye, said that he was nothing for me. Later he and I became I couple. We are still together.

 

 

Almost

 

The drawing was selected to hang in a highly reputable exhibition in town. On the opening night it was steaming with people. This party was considered to be popular and many exhibitors were present. The chairman of the jury came straight up to me just after I had arrived. He said the choice lay between me and someone else, I almost got the prize. I was flattered. I was happy for the other one and liked his work. Later I wondered what I could use this information for. Where does one place almost.

 

 

The gallery owner

 

I once showed the owner of a gallery a folder with my newest drawings.  He looked at them closely one by one and stopped/paused at a pencil drawing.  The drawing represented a woman with a pair of panties over her head.  He noticed the look, the eyes.  He said that the drawing had a sad expression.  He said that he sometimes put pants over his head but then because it was fun.

 

 

Darth Vader

 

I was about 11 years old when the first Star Wars movie came. I was obsessed by Luke Skywalker. He represented the good. The actor’s name was Mark Hamill. I had just had my ears pierced. In my left ear I had a small M in silver, in the right one an H. Many years later I saw him again in a small part in a Norwegian TV series. He played a sly and evil American businessman. His face was changed. What I earlier had found handsome and attractive had now become disgusting.

 

 

 

 

 

Text from the catalouge " Take it in hand and do something of it", published 2007. All text by H.L.O.K.

 

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