Interior designs

The secret diary of Tyler Brûlé

Though my apartment is hideous and I dress like Gilda Radner, I’m at the Interior Design Show at the Metro Convention Centre last week, trying to score some free scented candles from the Fendi booth and feeling completely off the Hot Wheels track.

When what do I discover at my feet ? The platinum-bound diary of Wallpaper magazine founder and zillionaire playboy Tyler Brûlé! Hmm, he must have dropped it after giving the speech that opened the humungous trade show. Now, maybe I’ll get some class.

Read and learn, fellow peasants.

Fri, Jan 22, 1999. 3pm.

Dear Epiphany Storage Unit,

Love airplanes. Wonder what’s in the back part? Clouds pearly and tight, smart look. Landing very chunky, with arabesques of cool air for cushion.

Where am I? Toronto. Tor-on-to. Hate the name – too cluttered, needs bite. No place should end in an “O,” unless it’s Italian. And plow over that scareport! Stupid country. Wasn’t I born here?

Memo to Self: Check press kit about place of birth.

Oh, ESU: The all-weather carpet in the limo is reminding me of How Green Was My Valley, with Roddy. And now Roddy is gone. Too upset to write. More later.


The Interior Design Show. “The” unnecessary, “interior design” is dead. Revise title to “Show.” Micro title.

Bits, ESU, the whole world is comprised of Bits. Put the Bits together and you’ve got Stuff, put the Stuff together and you’ve got Look, put the Look together and you’ve got Lifestyle. I should sell this copy.

Memo to Self: Get book deal for ESU.

The Umbra garbage pail mobile in the lobby is a bad sign. Welcome to Landfill Palace. Swirl around the display booths – sad times for all.

Will calla lilies never go away? Why are Bengal tigers practically extinct while calla lilies thrive? Remember to call sub-editor with idea for species exchange editorial. Could sell in Japan.

Oh-Kay, Oh-Kay. Enough distressed metallics! Fury, I’m in a fury! And those “comfort plastics” are hateful! You take two spit gobs of hard candy, then stick a clock in the middle. Anything that cute makes me feel desperate and shaky. Now I look like a pointed shoe.

Great, the media’s here. I’m in full Tippi Hendren and here come the seagulls. Breathe, TB, breathe. Touch a chakra… Fuck, can’t get at it, my pager’s covering my healing point again.


Thank Khali that’s over. Two little freaks from something called Xtra – Skinny and Fatty. Skinny tried to get socio-political. His sweater really draped. French surname. Don’t remember the questions.

Then Fatty asks me: “What colour is your aura this week?” And since I just had my aura treated in Switzerland, I told the Willy Wonka life member: “Ban de Soleil Orange.” He blinked, which is about the best you can hope for.


ESU, I just don’t get Xtra! Oh-Kay, so it comes out every other week – that means when you’re reading it, you’re either a week behind or a week early. How do you integrate your purchasing? I should buy the rag and go on a firing binge.

And, furthermore, it’s free. Free – so Soviet, in the wrong way.


My speech was fascinating. Merciless, yes, but conveyed with knowing.

I touched on the micro moment in housing and the death of the ber-kitchen, on anchoring furniture with mid ’70s prints, the home meal replacement philosophy (ie never eat at home, dinner guests are for people who talk too much), bespoke everything, and some stuff about how much impossible-to-imagine fun I had in Sydney, Australia.

Where was CNN? I am breaking news. Fuck Kosovo.

I probably shouldn’t have revealed that I drink before noon. Pooh, pooh. Nobody drinks in Toronto unless a) it’s dark outside and b) they’re in the woods camping and somebody has to operate on their leg.

Overall, ESU, I was riveting, I was a revelation – a totally actualized moment inside a nomadic, non-static moment. Like really committed serial dating.

As I stood on the podium and looked out at that sea of fags dressed in black and grey, I felt like I was at the Nuremberg rally. Triumph Of The Gild.

ESU, I’m in a complete glamour sweat, I’m trancing on a clapping rush! I’m perspiring gold – no, wait, not gold. Something cleaner, less heavy: Time.

I am sweating Time itself!

They loved me!

Note to staff: Fire speech writer, he’s peaked.

Thanks to Tyler Brûlé, RM “Fatty? What a horrible thing to call Daniel Paquette” Vaughan has had an upgrade and now looks like Gene Wilder.

RM Vaughan was a Canadian writer and video artist.

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Culture, Toronto

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