One of the reasons why I love movies so much is that they can sometimes evoke a certain feeling. I was watching Confessions of a Shopaholic and the movie was spot on when it comes to how stores can make us feel. But the only way I know how to describe this feeling is “that glittery pink sparkle bubbly feeling.”
It’s rather elusive; I don’t feel this way often. And I’ve noticed that this feeling is tied to New York City. Chick flicks and fashion movies set in NYC seem to flip this feeling on. In fact the movie gave me this feeling, despite its message decrying overconsumption. But it’s not always just tied to New York.
The glittery pink sparkle bubbly feeling (GPSB) is a feeling of classiness and glamor and romance and high-end clothing that always fits perfectly, the kind of jazz music you hear in upscale lounges and beautiful locations with low lighting and a perfect velvety ambiance. It’s a feeling of happiness and elation and there’s not a care in the world. It’s the feeling of being a kid at Christmastime. It’s as if the burdensome veil of reality has been lifted to reveal a whole other world, a world that is, in my mind, eternally glittery pink and sparkling and bubbly.
This is not a feeling that I have ever felt in real life outside of a store, save for on one occasion. That’s the thing about this feeling, it is usually synthetic, occurring very rarely in nature. Synthetic GPSB comes from the veneer of glamour that New York City has had transposed on it for so many years. It comes from the pages of polished magazines and the aura of luxury stores. It comes from the idea of romance, but not romance itself.
That’s the funny thing about the GPSB feeling- it’s never found naturally in any of the the places we think it will be. But the synthetic version is found in the ideas of the things and places where we think we can find the real deal.
Your version of the GPSB feeling may have a different color, a different central location, you may even have a different name for it. Regardless, you know what I’m talking about. It’s rare and elusive and more often than not, you can’t find it if you’re trying too hard.
That’s why, real GPSB is never found where I’ve looked for it. I’ve been to New York City once. I went to the FIT museum, had lunch a chic little vegan restaurant, and then took a horse drawn carriage ride around Central Park and got my picture taken in front of the Friends fountain. But it wasn’t until it was time to leave and the sun was going down and the city was lighting up for the night that I felt the feeling as we sat in traffic and I stared at the marvelous, fashionable displays in the store windows. I daydreamed about having enough money to shop there and what my life would be like if I did. In such daydreams, once again the veil of reality is lifted.
It’s easy to lift the veil of reality and to forget about whatever is stressing us out and the normal doldrums of life when we’re watching a movie or listening to music or reading a glossy magazine. We think that once we move to a certain locale or can afford a certain lifestyle and certain things that we will somehow be able to capture the GPSB feeling in a jar and hold onto it forever. That’s why some of us spend too much. Some of us over-consume media. Others of us use and abuse substances. We get in or stay in relationships for this reason too. We travel places because we think somehow life is just different or better “there” than it is “here.”
But everywhere you go, there you are. And the heavy veil of reality stays with you.
The two times in my life when I have felt the genuine, all-natural GPSB feeling, I wasn’t living the life that I imagine in my daydreams. The first time, I was around 8 years old and riding Alfie, the stable’s horse that I rode for my lessons. The second time, I was waiting for the T.
I can’t say much about the first time except that I was riding Alfie, trotting around the barn in a giant circle as always and at the time, all I knew was that my thoughts just sort of stopped; it was as if I was a desperate being both within and without of myself.
The second time was much more recent and I had been meditating a lot during that time in my life, often for up to 45 minutes. I don’t remember where I was going or what I was doing that day waiting for the Orange Line on Mass Ave. I was wearing a dingy old winter coat from the Goodwill, not the kind of glamorous attire I daydream about.
Yet I felt indescribably peaceful. I wasn’t in a rush, I wasn’t worried, and all felt right in the world. Time was slower and I slowed down with it. I hardly wanted to move or to actively think for fear of scaring this feeling away. I wanted to get a jar and capture it and keep it forever. But eventually, the moment ended and the bona fide GPSB feeling was gone.
It’s been a year and I have yet to experience anything like that since. I don’t think I can blame myself, 2020 was a rough year. Although, I haven’t been meditating as much as I used to.
I’m not sure exactly what causes this feeling. It could be mindfulness and being fully in the present. It could be the result of not worrying or not feeling rushed. Nevertheless, I’m going to be meditating more and I’ll keep an eye out for the glittery pink sparkle bubbly feeling to show up again.