The closing sequence of my book is admittedly weird, and I am plainly suggesting that I’m talking about the mythological figure Sigrid, and not the pop star, and this is deliberate. Though I don’t want to tell people how to think about the text, my read of the facts is that Ida is in fact Sigrid, and if you watch her video, “Strangers”, you’ll see a simply astonishing intersection between the text, and the video –
The plain implication is that Ida’s character is in fact a work of art, from my imagination, and the reveal is that Sigrid is in fact Ida, and that she is a real person. I’ll also note that the full name of the mythological Sigrid is, “Sigrid the Haughty”, which when read aloud, sounds like, “Sigrid the Hottie”, which is not only awesome, and true, but also a Marcel Duchamp reference, to L.H.O.O.Q, which is perfect structurally, since Sigrid appears after the end of the text, like a mustache on the Mona Lisa –
The surprise ending, after the work is already done.
Let’s begin with the opening line (00:18):
“It starts to rain, and we, we’re the broken beauties”, referencing the flood in the third chapter, as she rises from what looks like a canvas, covered in the shadows of a tree, wearing a yellow shirt, echoing the painting I made for Ida, which has a, “sculptural finish, with a thickness that is significantly raised off the surface of the canvas” (p. 69), as if Sigrid is a painting that’s come to life;
“Blindfolded, minds collide” (00:30), referencing the beers we buy in Sardegna, Ichnusa, the label for which features blindfolded silhouettes, echoing the trope that my true identity has been stolen from me, by bandits;
Ichnusa Beer, featuring four blindfolded silhouettes on the label.
She mirrors the, “Michael Bolton” sequence (p.109), reading a paper, suddenly putting it down (2:24), staring, suggesting a secrete relationship between myself and Sigrid, and of course, she’s angry at the idea that I cheated on her with a Danish celebrity, Mø;
There’s a statue in the video that is plainly a male, stone version of, “Bacchante and Infant Faun”, (00:39) which is referenced in the New York sequence of the text (p. 46);
Bacchante and Infant Faun, by Frederick William MacMonnies (1894).
The drapes hanging are colored like the white marble wall of the bar in Sardegna, which now appears as a soft fabric, that she simply walks through, suggesting visibility into the artistic process (00:48);
The stairs in the background reference the stairs in the studio in Copenhagen, again suggesting you’re now in the studio, getting a glimpse into how things work (01:13);
The giant rocks she’s dancing around (3:13) reference the, “giant sand, or salt crystals” from the artwork in the gallery sequence (p. 187);
Further, the canvas she’s standing in front of (3:37), lit up in green and blue lights, featuring trees, plainly also references the art work that she is likely to have made in the gallery sequence, though almost as if it’s another version, made to represent the beach at night, rather than during the day;
“Memories and photos, too easy to rewrite; left us lonely shadows” (1:27) –
These are simply not normal lyrics for a pop song, especially by someone this young, and it is plainly a subject dealt with explicitly in the text (p. 119).
Sigrid inexplicably, repeatedly screamed like a maniac at a concert, referencing the Eurovision sequence, where a man appears, “basically shouting into a microphone, in what strikes Jeff as most likely to be German”, (p. 117), though Sigrid is obviously a woman, screaming in English;
Watching screens is a repeated theme in the text, as the output of cameras, as a play on observation itself, and the TV plays an inexplicably important role in the aesthetics of rooms, and in substance, providing information that is often critical to a scene, which is clearly referenced in, “Strangers”, and in fact, Sigrid holds a camera, as if watching someone, perhaps me (2:33);
The recording process itself, as a strange invention of modern life, that lets ghosts come back to life (p. 181), also plays a prominent role in the text, and in the video;
The water at the very opening of the video, which has no obvious connection to the rest of the video, references the water while we’re driving after the flood, which represents the power of external objects, like art, to trigger memories, “protecting our memory as well”(p.150);
The words just before each chorus are, “our story’s after the end”, and the final sequence is in fact after the end of the book (p. 214), which actually ends on page 212;
She smiles at the end of the video, alluding to something bordering on funny –
As if she knew that this would all be used in a spectacularly different context, that would inevitably blow someone’s mind (4:02);
Finally, there’s a guy holding a fan (1:05), with my haircut, again suggesting visibility into the artistic process that generated the text –
That you get so see how I did it.
She’s also wearing yellow, in front of a blue backdrop, which is the coloring from our kitchen tiles (p. 125), and the coloring of the sky during the flood (p. 145), and also the color of my scarf in the photo below, demonstrating my artsy do.
Super strange art dude.
The closing sequence would therefore be Ida watching herself on TV, but to resolve this impossibility, given the fact that she, “doesn’t know the song” in question (p. 214), the TV would in this case be playing a song that Ida has not written in this life, or hasn’t written yet, alluding to my ideas on time, which suggest alternate possible realities, and communication between not only different realities, but also from the past into the future, and the future into the past, which is a thread running throughout the entire text, which is in fact itself told almost completely out of order.
This is plainly reflected by the fact that Sigrid has red hair, and green eyes, whereas Ida has blonde hair, and blue eyes, yet I’m saying they are in fact the same person, though there’s a moment in the video for, “Strangers”, where her eyes appear blue in color (2:57), echoing the narrative of the text itself, which is intended to be a sketch, and incomplete in terms of information, with glimpses into what could be interpreted as a memory, but perhaps a memory stored exogenously, by artifacts in the external world, that I’ve strung together, thereby creating an alternate reality, implied by our reality.
Sigrid also says, in the final song referenced in the text, “Dynamite”, “You see, my red is blue”, alluding to subjectivity in perception, despite my belief in an objective reality.
Moreover, the scene of the video for, “Dynamite” is plainly reminiscent of how I described the studio in our home in Copenhagen, with the only objects in sight being a piano and an amplifier (p. 122), in a setting that looks more like a home, than a recording studio. Further, she’s not really wearing much make up, referencing the scene in Carnegie Hall, and appears to be wearing roughly colorless lipgloss (p. 39). The scene also represents the culmination of a path towards freedom for both characters, since we’re both free economically, Ida is free of her trauma, and I’m free of my hatred, if only for the moment –
This places us in a moment that is beyond time and space, where strange things are possible, where location becomes permeable, which is echoed by the opening words to, “Dynamite”, which are, “Don’t know where I am with you; forgetting time and space with you.”
This is also echoed by the closing painting, “The Kiss”, by Klimt, which I’ve rebranded, as “Liebesträume, No. 541”, which in English means, “Love Dream, Number 541”, as if this entire story were just one instance of the relationship between Ida and I –
That we have different names, and different bodies in other outcomes, but nonetheless, the same soul.
The Kiss, by Gustav Klimt (1908).
This is also echoed by the lyrics from Sigrid’s song, “Strangers”, where she says, “Think we got it, but we made up a dream”, and the use of, “Dreams”, by the Cranberries, during the sequence at the beach (p. 85), with the idea being, that if you love someone that much, then moments really do appear surreal, at times, as if you’re dreaming –
That the physical constraints of reality break down, leaving just the two of you, in your own space (p. 5).
This appears again in the sequence in Sardegna, where I look up to find, “a memory mounted into a ceiling” (p. 33), suggesting in the aggregate, that my relationship with Ida is allowing me to recover a, “stolen dream” (p. 33 and 215).
If you buy into the magic, then Sigrid and I somehow created this book together, despite being strangers –
That what I said about our relationship is physically true, in that Ida and I, “contribute to a moving portrait, that we share, together, as coauthors and spectators of an uncertain future, and a certain now.” (p. 105), perhaps so we could rediscover each other.
Finally, I’ll note that my plainly bespoke and artsy hairdo inexplicably appears at 1:05 in Sigrid’s video for, “Strangers”, the quote suggesting we wrote the work together appears on page 105 of my book, and “EDA” backwards is “ADE”, which when expressed in numerals is, “145”, and from a distance, it’s not unreasonable to confuse a, “4” with a, “0”, but like I say in the book, it seems as though we all have, “eye problems” (p. 198).