Charlotte Klobassa
2 MAY - 1 JUN 2019


Notes from the stationary store (by Karim Crippa, 2019)

January 3, 2019
Dear Diary,
New year, new me? I don't think so. I've spent the first day of work listening to Andrea complaining about the new Bic pens and their greasy smear; spied on the old man that comes in regularly to steal children's stickers, which I let him do (it feels like we share a secret, but he doesn't know we do); answering the phone in the softest possible voice, with the muted sound of a paper pile being dropped on a table as a sonic example; and sending laconic yet disturbing texts to Franco to keep him on his toes (today's favorite: If I were Andrea, would you still date me?'). All in all, nothing has changed; I still cannot decide whether I'm rotting or blooming.

January 22, 2019
Dear Diary,
I got a manicure and surely enough, Andrea reprimanded me for it; thank God. What would the point have been otherwise? Is it weird that I get excited to see her body become agitated, her face flushed, and her voice murky at the sight of my sparkly cuticles? Anyway, I like the felling of pinching the postcards hard, stretching my fingers excessively so I can tip on a keyboard, and the 'toc toc toc' of the acrylic on my phone. It's like an additional medium between me and the world. Ten little, fragile, pink shields. Today I saw a tall woman staring at the scribbles and doodles clients produce when trying out pens; she observed them for a long time, and I observed her observing, and it made me mad. It felt like she was trying to eat up someone else's dinner without asking first. No news from Franco, but M. seems to be on board again. More soon!

February 15, 2019
Dear Diary,
Work has been extremely relaxing – it's like the opposite of all my girlfriends, who justify their excessive presence at boozy afterwork gatherings alongside third-rate finance bros with 'stress' and 'too much work'. Come smell a freshly unpacked stack of notebooks, I tell them, it will soothe you more than cheap liquor in an inconveniently shaped glass. They look at me like I am crazy, but I know I'm right. I'm not seeing the old sticker thief anymore. Perhaps he's died? The tall woman, however, keeps coming in more than ever. I'm not interested in her. But I am jealous of her hair.

February 16, 2019
Dear Diary,
I forgot to tell you: I have committed to bi-monthly manicure sessions. Expensive, but money needs to be spent somehow. Andrea doesn't dare firing me over it, because she knows I probably am the only person in this city who can get over both her criminal taste for polyester blouses and asymmetrical haircut. I take photographs of my hands holding thick bundles of expensive Montblanc pens and send them to unknown numbers. I never get an answer.

March 2, 2019
Dear Diary,
Andrea has left. My soul feels torn, shredded, and in a weird sense, inaccurate; it's like I can't define its contours anymore. Why this departure impacts me so much, I do not know. I'm remembering the sticker thief more than ever, his supreme poise when shoving these childish things into his pockets, like fistfuls of candy. The other day I saw this tall person take one of the papers covered in doodles with her. I wanted to stop her, but I know now she is not a thief. Why I know this I cannot explain.

March 6, 2019
Dear Diary,
I'm in Punta Cana, with M. She is being her usual self, complaining about the sun, the food, about the music played in the hotel restaurant, the sweating and the mosquitoes. The hotel has a stationary store. A beautiful woman, who looks like she just jumped out of the shower and casually slipped into one of these dresses that hug you like a pair of warm lips, smiled at me as I was browsing through the postcards. I bought one and asked her to write 'Punta Cana' on it; as I saw her hands moving over the card, I thought I needed a similar dress. Perhaps I should just stay away from being away?