Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Una VS Uma: The Throw-Down

I was actually looking at "U" Baby names in order to write a little piece about the burdens of having a name that means “The One”. I’ve had that nickname with a number of boyfriends, and, well, that’s not a term to throw around lightly, especially when someone is going to, I don’t know, dump you on your one-year anniversary or sleep with your friend. But I digress.

The point is that everyone always calls me Uma. They assume that because there is one freakish Aryan celebrity giantess with than name that I must be saddled with a clunky “m” instead of the “n” I was born with. Not anymore, though. Here, in print, UMA is defined as “a form of Una”. TAKE THAT, alien woman! I OWN you! And you SUCKED in “The Truth About Cats and Dogs”.

Okay, I’m done.

Una and Jeff's Engagement Campaign 2006-7

First we hit the Westerly Sun. Now the New York Observer.
Next, the world!


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

I Have Way More to Be Thankful for than the Pilgrims Did. Cuter Shoes, For One.

Things I am thankful for, in no particular order (well, actually, that’s a lie – I’m putting all of my touchy-feely items first. No one wants to be listed after Tootise Roll midgies.)

My soon-to-be husband, the love of my life;
My mother, who does a mean jitterbug;
My sister, who I would love even if she lived in an igloo made out of toilet paper rolls;
My father, who brings down the house;
My extended LaMarche family, who have lovely, wicked senses of humor;
My extended Chuse family, who have art in their blood;
My new Zorabedian family, who have welcomed me into their scatological clan;
My beautiful, brilliant friends, who keep me sane;
Tootsie Roll midgies (coming in at a respectable 9th);
The Sunday Times crossword;
Nina Simone;
A good cabernet;
Street musicians;
Blue jeans;
Just-picked Macoun apples;
Red nail polish;
Arrested Development (the show, not the hip-hop group, although they’re pretty awesome, too);
Lombardi’s pizza;
Block Island;
Nora Ephron;
Garrison Keillor;
Central Park;
And, of course, cute shoes.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Hello From Guest Blogger Christmas Una!

I am sad to say that for the next 40 days I will not be posting in my right mind (do I ever post in my right mind, you ask? To which I say: touché). Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, my sarcastic and self-deprecating demeanor is replaced with the kind of cheery, snowy, sparkly optimism one expects to find in Santa’s most medicated elf. I just love the holidays. I LOVE them. I don’t know where this comes from. I guess it’s just part inborn, part because my parents always made a big deal of the holidays, and part because I have never had a traumatic experience that tainted my Christmas cheer forever (my grandfather had two aneurysms around the holidays, but was good enough to wait until December 26 both times. He was a big Christmas fan, too – always with his fake tree that spent the other 11 months of the year in the closet, fully trimmed – and I remember that he referred to Jesus quite often, mostly in times of great frustration, and with “H. Christ!” tacked on to the end). So, you know, it’s innate.

I am just one of those people who find comfort in the bright and joyful (some might say façade, I say…) magic of the holiday season. I truly believe, deep down, that cold weather plus red plus green plus trees plus eggnog plus overpriced gift wrap results in peace, love, and goodwill towards men. I have the spirit of Linus and George Bailey and Bill Murray at the end of Scrooged combined. I hang lights and stockings and plan entire days around the baking of reindeer-shaped cookies. I have an almost scary affection for Christmas music, which you can find me listening to as soon as the tryptophan hits my bloodstream.

So basically, if you thought Engaged Una was bad, get ready for Christmas Una.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, y’all!


Wednesday, November 15, 2006

I'm Not Making This Up: "Suggested Searches" on

Gay marriage
Fra Angelico
Muslim veils

There must be a message here. Gays. Bird flu. Italian Renaissance master. Hijab. MP3 Player.

What does it mean?

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

That Was Easy

I have been told that I don’t fuck around when it comes to shopping. I’ll walk into a store, point, and purchase. No lollygagging for this girl, no buyer’s remorse, sometimes even no trying on of clothes. I pride myself on this no bullshit approach to consumerism, and so I guess it’s no surprise that on my second outing to look at wedding gowns, I came home with one. I literally walked out of the store with it, because it fit like it was custom-made for me, right off the rack. No alterations, no dry cleaning, no nothing. It’s eleven months until my wedding and I have managed to nail down the date, the place, and the gown. I guess that leaves more time to pick shoes!

I really need to spread the word about the place I bought it – The Bridal Garden. It’s an organization that receives donated gowns from designers, stores, and individuals, and sends proceeds to the Sheltering Arms Childrens Service. All of the gowns are marked down 50 – 75%, and once you are married you can donate it back so that you benefit the organization twice.

OK, back to the superficial. It’s so pretty! I’m keeping her under wraps until the wedding day, at least where Jeff is concerned. I’m fairly certain that I’ll spend at least a few hours dancing around in it between now and October 19 of next year.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Something Old, Something New, Something Brown, Something with Hideous Spangles on the sleeves ...

Yesterday I went to Kleinfeld, the world's schmanciest,JAP-iest, largest bridal salon. Don't get me wrong, the attendants are lovely and helpful and the place is swanky. It's just .... how to put this? I used to draw on my naked body with Crayola markers as a child. People frequently wipe things off of my face. I have been known to wear suede when it's raining, and I put my bras in the dryer. I'm just not meant to have nice things. So putting on $2800 dresses - white dresses - made me feel kind of like a very pretty bull in a couture china shop. All in all, though, it went well. I managed not to rip or sully anything and I learned some fun facts:

1. Do not wear see-through underwear. The woman helping you has just met you.

2. No matter how lovely it looks on the rack, a bodice resembling the Chrysler building will make you look like the Chrysler building.

3. Like their namesake, mermaid dresses are not meant for land.

4. Trust a dress only if you can lift it.

5. Pink and brown are not acceptable colors for wedding gowns. You can dress it up with lace; you're still wearing brown. I'm all for shunning tradition, but this is the color of poo, people. Can't we do better?

6. Do not wear see-through underwear. I cannot stress this enough.

Sadly, I did not find the ONE yesterday, but I'll keep you posted as I stomp my way through other pretty pretty princess shops around Manhattan.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Update, By Popular Demand

I really haven't been lazy, dear readers. I've been sick. AND I have a lot of Desperate Housewives Season One in my schedule these days. In fact, here is a rundown of my day yesterday:

8:45 am Therapy
10:00 am Buy Elle, Oprah Magazine (what?!)
10:30 am Rent Desperate Housewives Season One from BlockBuster
11:00 am Bundle up on couch, watch Disc 1
2:00 pm Disc 2
5:00 pm Disc 3
8:00 pm Disc 4
9:00 pm Grey's Anatomy interlude

Hmmm, that looks kind of pathetic written down. But it would have looked MORE pathetic if I included the three chocolate drumsticks I comsumed, in a row, as well as the bag of Reese's Cups (oh, and soup, Mom. Lots of soup.)

Aaaaanyway, last weekend the parents met over dinner at Blue Hill, where we got VIP treatment thanks to our amazing friend, business manager Sara Lesin. Since I know that at least my parents will be reading this, I am hesitant to make any comments about how it went, except to say that we all got exceptionally drunk, and that we had to in order to survive. That said, the two sets of estranged parents (to be fair, on a scale of 1 to 10, in which 1 is the best of friends and 10 is justifiable homicide, my parents are at a comfortable 3-4, whereas Jeff's hover around 8.5) were wonderful and social and made us feel very special. Jeff's Dad, who up until that night had displayed the social skills of Der Golem, gets the Most Improved award for the evening. His son, on the other hand, gets the Most Scotch Consumed award, I think for the decade.

More to come soon, I promise.

Thursday, November 2, 2006

Taffeta? I Don't Even Know Her!

So, I totally missed the memo on being engaged, I think. There’s a website that I am on all day consult from time to time called The Knot, and it is so full to bursting of taffeta, tulle, tips & tricks that your brain will quickly rot down to the size of a single, perfect boutonniere if you are not careful. I have not been careful; I have thrown myself head first into planning, letting my control freak neuroses roam free as I make lists, pore over wedding magazines, and envision myself in various types of Swarovski-encrusted shoes. Of course, now I read The Knot’s “just engaged” advice, which recommends just “lingering on Cloud 9” for awhile. Now, I have never really liked to linger anywhere, especially when there are fun things to be planned, or guest lists to be alphabetized. Even when there’s nothing to do, I make lists. I’ve only ever had two successful naps in my life, and one of those was technically alcohol poisoning.

I think that now is as good a time as any to slow down. I mean, last night, I was near tears because Jeff expressed doubt that we should incorporate the hora into our wedding reception. The hora. I’m not even really Jewish. I am definitely waaay to close to Bridezilla territory and I have eleven and a half months to go.


Cloud 9 probably isn’t so bad, I guess. Jeff and I can roll around in fluffy pillows and feed each other Tootsie Rolls. I can, I don’t know, bask in the glow that comes, presumably, from the anticipation of being registered for many electronic appliances. Oh, and true love. That too. Here’s a scary thought, though: what if my Cloud 9 is planning? I guess if that’s the case, I should hot-foot it back down to the ground pronto, into my baby’s lovin’, lovin’ arms.

P.S. That photo up top is called "Ham Girl". That is all.

Wednesday, November 1, 2006

The Mets Make Me SHHAD

So, I’ve been scolded by my Mets-loving friend Adri for not posting about the NLCS. Truth be told, I don’t generally follow baseball unless a team I like (the Red Sox and the Mets, respectively) is doing well. Then, of course, there’s the issue of my emotional involvement. I suffer from a strange affliction that can best be described as Second Hand Humiliation Avoidance Disorder (SHHAD). I get so upset watching people lose that I literally turn my head away from the television. My reality TV show addiction exacerbates SHHAD symptoms; I watch every episode of America’s Next Top Model with glee, but when that moment comes when Tyra Banks dashes one of the skinny bitches’ hopefuls’ dreams, I find it hard to look at the reaction shots. This translates, in the wide world of sports, to my inability to watch any of the following: strikeouts (player humiliated); home runs (pitcher humiliated); fumbles; pitcher substitutions; manager and/or coach reaction shots; and, of course, the end of any given game. In my perfect world, every team would win and no person would every have to suffer a sad reaction shot in HDTV.

So, really, the reason that I didn’t post about the Mets losing the NLCS is that I wasn’t watching. In the 8th inning of Game Six, I lay down on my bed and closed my eyes. Jeff was watching the game in the other room, and I listened for tell-tale cheers. When there was silence, followed by the click! of the TV being turned off, I knew it was over. I take pretty much everything too seriously, and baseball is no exception. Let’s not even bring up the Red Sox.
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