Sunday, February 28, 2010

Palate Cleanser

Because I am dying of shame and cannot let the Buckwheat story be the top post on my blog. What if today is the day that David Sedaris/Clive Owen/President Obama decides to stop by? I NEED TO GO TO MY HAPPY PLACE. Want to come along?

There. Now I feel better.


Scenes From a Marriage: The Littlest Rascal

DISCLAIMER: This is way TMI. Blood relatives, proceed at your own risk.
UPDATE: Also not safe for children who can read (sorry, MsTaken!)

SCENE: Our living room. Saturday night. Basic couch cuddling. Jeff peeks under my dress (as he is wont to do) and observes that I am wearing a thong.

Jeff: Those can't be comfortable.
Me: They're not.
Jeff: Why do you wear them, then?
Me: VPL, dude.
Jeff: What?
Me: Visible panty line. Major faux pas.
Jeff: What about thong bikinis?
Me: I don't show my butt in public.
Jeff: Why not?
Me: I'm pasty.
Jeff: We could get some bronzer up in here.
Me: You want other people to see my ass?

Jeff pauses to think.

Jeff: What if they made front thongs?
Me: That would be... awful.
Jeff: Show me.

Putting all of my vanity and dignity aside (with help from a glug of wine), I oblige, giving myself what amounts to a front wedgie. THE MAGIC IS GONE.

Jeff: It looks like... Buckwheat hiding behind a lamppost or something.
Me: My vagina looks like the black kid from The Little Rascals?
Jeff: What? Um, no... I mean... just his hair.
Me: We are done here.

Omigah! I can't believe he said that about my vagina!


Saturday, February 27, 2010

Snaa Daa Waath Peter Sarsgaard

Sah fahrst ahf aahl, Jahf ahnd ah cahn't stahp tahking lahk thahs (Ahd naht: "thahs" bahing "lahk rahtahds.")

Translation: So, first of all, Jeff and I can't stop talking like this (Ed note: "this" being "like retards.")

I blame this squarely on Allie Brosh, who writes the hilarious blog Hyperbole and a Half and who has invented a character called "Spaghatta Nadle," a spaghetti noodle with a speech impediment. Wah ahr tahtahly ahbsahssed. Ahts gahting tah bah ah prahblahm. (Translation: We are totally obsessed. It's getting to be a problem.)

It totally did not help that yesterday we went sledding and ran into Peter Sarsgaard. Obviously.

Okay, backing up. I am not telling this story very well.

As I mentioned yesterday, it snowed so much that we couldn't fly to Florida. So we decided to use our snow day wisely and went sledding.

We practiced first in our apartment, because we are giant spazzes:

Ahr nabarhs prahbablah haht ahs. (Our neighbors probably hate us.)

Then we bundled up (Jeff in his black coat and hat and I in my Muppet gloves, Rainbow Brite boots, and earmuffs, looking sort of like Jeff's "special" sister with whom he might ride the bus, were this a Lifetime movie of the week) and headed over to Fort Greene park to get our tobogg on. (Get it? Tobbogan. Oh yes, I went there.)

Everything was great until we got to the park and saw that the only people sledding were small children and their adult guardians. Awkward! First of all, we had to wait our turn in line, but I kept letting all of the little kids cut ahead of us because it seemed cruel not to. (Even though the parents were probably whispering to their progeny, "It's okay, Tallulah. Let the nice man and the... special lady go first. Aren't her boots pretty?") Secondly, we probably weigh almost 300 pounds combined, and the thing about small children is that they don't move very fast and if you speed towards them on a runaway toboggan then they don't move at all.

We didn't kill any, though, even when Jeff decided to take a video recording:

As someone on Facebook noted, he is totally copping a feel. 

After this ride we clambered back up the hill and were waiting eagerly for another turn when I saw a man helping his daughter onto a tiny plastic disc. He looked familiar, and after a few seconds I realized that I, a grown woman wearing bright childlike accessories and wielding a big plastic orange toboggan, was looking at Peter Sarsgaard and his kid (whose mother is Maggie Gyllenhaal). This kind of freaked me out, because it is one thing to humiliate yourself in front of normal people, but it is quite another to do it in front of celebrities. Also, as you know I tend to humiliate myself in front of famous people even when I am not looking like a special-needs adult. Much to Jeff's dismay, I asked to head home. He insisted on a final ride, and I agreed. "Just make sure we don't hit the Sarsgaard spawn," I hissed. I took off my earmuffs and shook my hair, trying to look decent just in case there were paparazzi lurking, trying to capture Sarsgaard's outing for UsWeekly's "Stars! They're Just Like Us!" page.

It was a great day, though. In summation:

Bright orange toboggans: 1
Ridiculous Muppet gloves: 2
Age-inappropriate rainbow snow boots: 2
Endlessly patient and loving husband: 1
Small children intimidated: 16 (approximate)
Small children injured: 0 (that we know of)
Peter Sarsgaard sightings: 1
Celebratory hot cocoas: 2
Celebratory chocolate chip cookies that I did not share: 1
Perfect snow days:1


Friday, February 26, 2010

Um, Just Kidding. I'm Not Gone Fishin'. I'm On A Horse. With Chin Hair.

So, our flight got cancelled due to the snow in NYC (and as far down as DC I gather, since our connecting flight was also cancelled). No Florida funeral for us. However I am still staying home because I already put in for the time off and I'd have to deal with HR not to mention slog through Gary Coleman-high drifts just to get to the subway, so... SNOW DAY. Even if my work reads this they cannot be mad, because the relative is still dead and it is not my fault God wanted me to go sledding today instead of to a wake.

Of course, this means I have to blog now since I was all dramatic about my three-day hiatus. I should have just not said anything, but then I thought you guys might think I abandoned you and I thought of your sad little faces (well, I thought of sad emoticons actually, since I don't know what most of you look like) and it was too much for me to bear.

At first I thought I'd have to distract you like that dude in the Old Spice ads. Like, hey guys, I'm back. Now look down. Is that a burrito? I'm wearing a fright wig. No, I'm not. Aren't you glad I'm blogging? This blog is now made of freckles. I'm on a horse.

This is the only time I have actually been on a horse and also the only photo in which I do not look like I'm peeing from fear.

But then I went to put some concealer on (yeah, keepin' the magic alive for Jeff) and the snow outside my window flooded my face with, like, a blinding white light. And that is when I saw my chin hair. It was long enough to wave at me in the breeze like one of those inflatable Gumby-looking things you see at car washes. It was like, "Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii, you finally found meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!" I lunged for my Tweezers. I think I even screamed "DON'T LOOK AT ME!" even though Jeff wasn't even home.

You'd think that a person with a natural unibrow would not be surprised by a chin hair, but I'm actually not a terribly hairy person (TMI, right, you are totally picturing me naked right now, aren't you? Well, now you are.) Full disclosure, YES, in seventh grade some bitch asked me if I shaved only the backs of my legs (which would be ridiculous, since the back are so much harder to reach and why would I want a reverse leg hair mullet?) but I never pictured myself as one of those old women who don't even try anymore and who shuffle around the laundromat with a full beard. Is this my destiny? Now I do want to distract myself. Uh, this chin hair is made of diamonds! Look at the Old Spice guy's pecs. Now back to the chin hair, I MEAN DIAMONDS. GOD. Now back to the Old Spice pecs? It's almost 2 o'clock. Time for wine? I'm [sob] on [sob] a [sob] HORSE!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Gone Fishin'

Hi guys. Very sadly there was a death in Jeff's extended family and we will be gone tomorrow and over the weekend, so I will not be blogging. Even though I never met the deceased I want to pay my respects by NOT acting like an asshole on the Internet for a few days.

Incidentally the only time I ever went fishing my friend Salvador (of Look in Butt fame) somehow got his hook stuck in the back of his head while he was casting his line and we had to go to the emergency room. True story.

See you Monday.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Pimp My Mascot

Today my friend Meghan sent me a link to a story about how her alma mater, Ole Miss, is pretty close to establishing Admiral Ackbar from Star Wars as its new mascot. This is A) totally awesome and B) got me thinking about my history with mascots.

It should not surprise any of you that I went to a high school represented by a monkey dressed as a pimp.

Well, that’s not really true. The real mascot was a Trojan warrior dude’s disembodied head. Lame! Also, having a Trojan as a high school mascot is basically like having a nipple as the mascot; we may not have known much about Trojans, but the mere allusion to sex was enough to send us into breathless adolescent hysterics. (Special belated apologies go out to my gym teacher, Mr. Hyman. Our anatomical education was your downfall.)

Anyway, since the Trojan was both lame and latex-y, at some point my high school started a tradition in which each graduating class got to choose its own mascot, which was generally a pun on some piece of pop culture. Previous classes had chosen Karate Squid, Codfather, Fight Cub, Quantum Sheep, Pinball Lizard, Habeas Porpoise (oh, yes, we were nerds), and Apocalypse Cow. Although my school was a magnet school full of freaks and geeks, my class had a reputation as a giant pain in the ass, the kinds of kids who smoked pot on the high school grounds and had unchaperoned make-out parties when we weren’t busy studying the Byzantine Empire, so naturally we had to be a little bit bad. We chose as our mascot “Chimp Daddy*.”

"Bulldogs is bitches, yo."

This was a pun on “Pimp Daddy,” but lucky for us our teachers and advisors didn’t make the connection and approved the choice. A few months later, we all received little stuffed chimp dolls wearing sunglasses and gold chains. During a pep rally in the gym (we didn’t have many pep rallies, as we had no football team) we performed a song set to the lyrics of Heavy D’s remix of “Big Daddy.” Some choice lines:

Drivin’ in your Caddy, you can be my chimp daddy
Take it slowly... monkey, hold me

He’s the flyest monkey from the north to the south
Everybody knows he’s a bad—shut yo mouth!**

**This means MOTHERFUCKER.

Needless to say, when I arrived at Wesleyan the next year and found out we had the gayest mascot ever, a cardinal, I got nostalgic for the good old days of singing about chimpanzees who carry canes and lord over prostitutes.

*I still mourn the loss of runner-up contender Lambo. A lamb with a bandana and an M60 would have been so precious.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Boots, Pickles, Justin Bieber: An Exercise in Humility

After yesterday's post I think the subway, as an entity, kind of thinks I'm a big ol' See You Next Tuesday, in the words of Charlotte York.

Why, you ask?

Well, after work I was standing on the uptown C platform, rocking on my heels as a person who very much needs a glass of wine is wont to do, and one of them snapped off.

These boots are from Aerosoles. I bought them in 2006 for $25 on sale and they have served me well, although I can't claim to have reciprocated. Although I am nearly 30, I have yet to enlist a cobbler or tailor to preserve my shoes and clothes; when the hem on a pair of pants gets raggedy I give them to Goodwill or make ill-fitting cut-off shorts, and when a shoe erodes, defeated by my New York power stomping, I toss it in the garbage along with its mate (I feel they need to die together, like a mummified Egyptian prince and all his wordly possessions).

I thought about snapping off the other heel to have a matching pair, but that would have required taking my good boot off (to reveal my rainbow-striped sock) and beating it maniacally against a nearby trash can, thus risking being mistaken for a crazy person... or a Marc Jacobs model.

Luckily, before I could decide what to do a Chinese man started playing a sad song on his flute—it sounded a lot like a requiem for a shoe—and I realized that instead of asking vain questions like "Can I limp all the way back to Brooklyn?" and "What if I run into Chris Noth?" I needed to take a step back and mourn the loss of my pleather boot. Seriously, it was like a shoe funeral. I have at least one witness (I would link to the Chinese flautist but I'm not sure if he blogs.)

I had a totally separate but equally humbling experience on Sunday. Jeff and I had gone to DSW to get him some sneakers and on our way back we stopped at a bodega for a jar of pickles (OUR LIFE IS AWESOME DO NOT BE JEALOUS). As I went to pay for my kosher dills at the cash register, I was confronted with this:

I am a winner, bodega register! You don't know! YOU DON'T KNOW!

I bet that register doesn't know that pickles now have more Facebook fans than Nickelback.* And, by extension, a lot more fans than me, but that's beside the point. 

*It was apparently inspired by a similar Facebook page, "Can This Onion Ring Get More Fans Than Justin Bieber." Speaking of J-Bieb, I could totally be his mom. I could have been fifteen and pregnant with a Canadian pop star who looks like Shiloh Jolie-Pitt in a trucker hat. Which nicely rounds out this exercise in humility.

Now where is my fucking wine?


Monday, February 22, 2010

Going Postal: On Subway Etiquette

Seeing as Emily Post lived in New York for much of her life, I'm flabbergasted that she never wrote a missive on subway etiquette*—after all, there is no place in which social graces are more tested than a small enclosed space smelling vaguely of urine and french fries. In the absence of any definitive guidelines, I think it's fitting to extrapolate a few lessons from chapter five—"On the Street and In Public"—of Post's 1922 bestseller Etiquette:

"Do not attract attention to yourself in public."

I would love to share this tip with the man who stood next to me on a packed express train recently. He was silent for a few stops and then, suddenly, began to yell "My vagina is on fire!" over and over. Had he possessed a vagina and had it actually been ablaze, I would have forgiven this transgression, although striking a match to one's genitals on a crowded subway car seems a violation of social mores in and of itself.

"Never take more than your share—whether of the road in driving a car, of chairs on a boat or seats on a train..."

Apparently a great many men have never bothered to read Etiquette; if they had, perhaps we wouldn't see so many seated with their knees spread so wide that they form a ninety-degree angle, suggesting a very sensitive case of elephantiasis of the testes.

This is like an urban mating call: "I have giant nuts."

Also in violation of this rule are women and men who feel that their bag deserves its own seat, and who roll their eyes when asked to move it to their laps. Has it paid the $2.50 fare? Perhaps it would have a more authentic riding experience were it to stand, wedged between two surly strap-hangers, during rush hour.

"The small boy’s delight in drawing a stick along a picket fence should be curbed in the nursery!"

I once shared a subway car with a toddler who banged a spoon against the pole repeatedly while his mother pretended not to notice. I do not normally think babies can be fairly called "assholes," but in this case I must reconsider.

"People who picnic along the public highway leaving a clutter of greasy paper and swill...choose a disgusting way to repay the land-owner for the liberty they took in temporarily occupying his property."

Given the dazzling array of portable, bar-shaped foods available at grocery stores and newsstands, I find it puzzling that people find it acceptable to eat meals that require utensils on public transportation. Chinese food and fried chicken are ubiquitous, and I once even saw a woman eat soup. It goes without saying that trash is left all over the floor, which is offensive to everyone, not just the "landowner," unless it provides temporary entertainment value, as during one recent ride in which my friends and I got to play that classic children's game "Mountain Dew or Pee?" with an unmarked, half-empty open cup of yellow liquid. Whichever it was, I'm sure Emily would not have approved.

*I am totally going to write one as soon as I finish watching season five of The Real Housewives of Orange County...

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Lucky 7 (Or, The Nipples of My Soul)

I am having a lazy Sunday, y'all. Jeff woke me up at 11:30 and took unflattering photos of me with puffy sleep eyes and sheet wrinkles on my face. He made it up to me by buying me coffee and I caught up on magazine reading. We took a walk to DSW and bought Jeff some sneakers with arch support; while I stood in line, a burly biker guy asked my opinion on heel inserts. We came home and I made a tuna sandwich. Riveting stuff. And that's all you'd have to read about today, too, if reader and fellow blogger Blissed-Out Grandma hadn't saved my ass by giving me an award.

Take that, Meghan. I am beautiful! Just like my Donkey Kong sculpture!

The award she has bestowed upon me is the Beautiful Blogger award, which I have obviously received for my bangin' bod, enviable bone structure, and brow shaping skills. (Or, maybe for my personality, which would totally look like Salma Hayek if it came to life. I am giving my personality giant boobs because I feel like my soul is busty, even if my physical body is not. That's weird, though, to think of my soul having nipples. Do souls have nipples? Wow, I am getting super existential here and am blowing my own mind. Moving on.)

So the Beautiful Blogger award dictates that you have to tell your readers seven interesting things about yourself. Then you have to pass it on to other people. It's like a blog chain letter, but like I said, be glad you're reading about this and not the differences between various types of Dr. Scholl's inserts.

by Sassy

Take me out for karaoke and I will be all, "No, I can't sing in front of other people." or "God, I will have to get SO DRUNK to sing." Then I'll let you convince me to do just one song and I will act all embarrassed when they call my name and I'll roll my eyes and bop awkwardly to the intro music but then I will bust out with some Bonnie Tyler like I am auditioning for American Idol. It is obnoxious but uncontrollable. Don't ever let me sing a duet with you, either. I will try to sing all of your parts and pretend like I don't know they're yours. I might also try to push you offstage under the guise of a dance move gone awry.

It looks like Jeff is lovingly nuzzling me but in fact I am just reverse head-butting him so he won't ruin my solo.

This started when I was in high school, probably because I identified with the witty, fashion-challenged, lovelorn geek that was Duckie Dale. It might also have been because I spent the entirety of high school (and most of college) being unwittingly attracted to gay men. I'm not saying Duckie is definitely gay, but if John Hughes had ever written Pretty in Pink 2 I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be referring to Andie. Hey-o! Anyway, you'll notice that the URL of my blog is an homage to one of Duckie's quotes in the movie ("That is a really volcanic ensemble you're wearing, it is really marvelous!"). I often ask myself WWDDD? ("What Would Duckie Dale Do?") The answer is usually "storm off dramatically," "fight with Andrew Dice Clay," "impromptu dance performance to Otis Redding's 'Try a Little Tenderness'" or  "try to make out with Annie Potts." As you might imagine, this has gotten me in trouble many a time.

It's like Pee-Wee Herman joined Oingo Boingo. Swoon!

I used to play it with my best friend Salvador when we were toddlers. It was doctor, essentially—or proctologist, more accurately—as we had no interest in heartbeats or hearing tests, instead choosing to focus solely on the anus. One of us would bend over and the other one would conduct the examination. What we were looking for, I can’t say—stray He-Man figures? Lost crayons?—but we took our work seriously. For years afterward I assumed that Look in Butt was consensual—the only thing that tempered the humiliation of its existence was Sal's complicity—but my father finally told me that he'd overheard us once. Sal was playing the patient at the time, and as he removed his underwear he said to me, “Una... this is wrong."

[You don't want an illustration for this one, trust.]

By misremembering the lyrics as "Gonna find me a woman, gonna hold her tight, gonna BUY me some afternoon delight." Sorry, Starland Vocal Band.

Ohhhhh, afternoon delight!

Once upon a time, I belonged to a gym. Actually, technically it's thrice upon a time, since I managed to join and quit three different gyms on three separate occasions. I do not like going to the gym—I don't like waiting for machines or being self-conscious about my ratty gym clothes or attempting to shower behind a tissue-thin curtain that does not go all the way to the wall on either side—but I am vain and also lazy and so for a long time I figured a gym membership was a necessary evil if I wanted to keep fit. My first gym, right out of college, turned out to be too expensive to afford on my non-existent salary. The next one was cheap but too far from home, so I never went. Then I got a job that came with a free gym membership. And it all would have worked out beautifully if it wasn't for Clive, a sexy personal trainer who approached me on my first day and coerced me into spending $1200 on a dozen sessions (by coerced, of course, I mean "asked me if I wanted to," as I am incapable of saying no to anyone, ever. Especially if they look like a black John Krasinski). I charged the sessions on a credit card and stocked up on ramen noodles for the coming famine. If I'm honest with myself I have to admit that during those three months, I loved the gym. I looked forward to my workout each week, especially the stretching part when Clive would lean on me and push my legs back over my head. When my sessions ran out Clive assumed I would sign up for more, but I couldn't tell him that I was broke, so I quit the gym to avoid him. He called me once to try to change my mind and I lied and said I'd lost my job.

Since I can no longer show my face at any gyms in the metropolitan New York area, over the years I have amassed a small library of fitness DVDs. Jeff calls the stash my "porn," which is inaccurate—if they actually were porn I would watch them way more often. As it is I only use a few—the ones that require the least effort on my part. It's telling that my favorite video is The Girls Next Door Workout, which stars three of Hugh Hefner's Playboy bunny girlfriends. The ladies' buoyant chests and tight outfits prevent them (and, by extension, me) from doing anything too strenuous, and their shining, Barbie-blond pigtails and bright smiles lull me into a trance so deep that I barely realize I'm moving.

Do not judge me.

Eat that, The Rules! Also, sorry Mom and Dad.

He bought the cow anyway.


Prince is playing "Look in Butt" with these flowers. 

Okay, now to pass on this award. But first, a brief musical interlude:

You're beautiful. You're beautiful.
You're beautiful, it's true.
I saw your face in a crowded place,
And I don't know what to do,
'Cause I'll never be with you.

There are so many wonderful bloggers out there that I will make up my own awards someday soon. But in the meantime I would like to shout out to a few people whose souls I suspect are pretty busty:

Meghan (not the deaf bitch from first grade) at Blackberries to Apples
Kari at My Inflammatory Writ
Annie at [clever title]
Blue Girl at Blue Girl in a Red Blue State
Susanna at Malibu Mama

Thanks for indulging me this afternoon, guys. And seriously, wear inserts. Arch support is crucial.

Saturday, February 20, 2010


Yesterday I got a package at work that contained a bag of gum and a little box of cards. The cards were labeled "GraTRUEities," so I assumed that they were those conversation-starter questions that are only good for ice-breakers if you are a total sociopath. "So, if you had to either take a dump once every hour or take one 24-hour dump once a month, which would you choose?"* That makes for great dentist waiting room small talk.

*That is an actual question I once got from one of those What If? books, and I'm still deciding. It really hinges on whether I can watch TV in the bathroom.

Anyway, GraTRUEities turn out to be something else entirely. They are little cards with notes on them, meant to be given to waiters and bartenders as a pertinent "tip" in addition to cash. For instance, if you got great service you might leave a 30% tip along with this:

Or, if your waiter was terrible, you might leave a fistful of pennies in the bottom of a half-finished beer along with this zinger:

Is it just me, or are these even worse than the Jump to Conclusions mat from Office Space? I mean, aren't cash tips messages in and of themselves? A 10% tip says either "You suck." or "I am an asshole." A 50% tip says "You should basically be the Emperor of all waitstaff" or "I am very rich and possibly drunk."

Speaking of drunk, some of the GraTRUEities seem tailor-made for gin-soaked mixed messages:

Seriously, what? Is that a come-on? (I know it's a song, but how and in what stage of acid trip is that a useful tip for a waiter?)

Actually, you know, some of these would be MUCH better applied to one-night stands. Assuming no cash changes hands, sex is something that people actually could use tips on.

Those really would be the gifts that keep on giving, at least for their next bedmates, since you would never see them again and might even get a special next-day delivery of black roses or dessicated turds.

If any waiters or bartenders are reading out there, I would love to know how you would react to getting a "tip" like these with your tips. My suspicion is that you would quietly copy down their name from their credit card, look them up on White Pages, and order them a "bill me later" subscription to the creepiest porn magazine you could find. Or maybe set the card on fire and start beating your chest like Tarzan until they run screaming, forgetting their coats, which you then rifle through for loose change and Life Savers?

Inquiring minds want to know.

UPDATE: Upon further reflection I must also take issue with the name of this product. If the sentiment is complimentary, then fine. I think people should be acknowledged for their work. But I can't help but imagine the following scene:

Sassy gay man* #1: Our waiter was terrible.
Sassy gay man #2: Oh, I know. He needs a wake-up call. I mean, sometimes less is less. Am I right?
SGM #1: True! When I asked for "on the rocks" I meant my vodka, not my service.
SGM #2: True!
SGM #1: OMG, I have an amazing idea...

Or am I just... ahem ... jumping to conclusions?

*Gays, please do not take offense. This product was likely created by two Curt and Ram type d-bags, but I couldn't imagine them saying "True!" to each other with the amount of sass I wanted to convey.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

When Sassy Learned Sign Language

I was sitting in a trailer making a papier-mâché bust of Donkey Kong when I got into my first fight with a deaf person. It was 1986 and I was in the middle of first grade at Reilly Elementary School in Austin, Texas, where my family had recently moved in order to facilitate my dad's job defending free speech (and, some Republicans publicly argued, child pornographers) through the Texas Civil Liberties Union.

The deaf girl's name was Meghan. She was one of four deaf kids in our class, and because of them we had two teachers, our normal one Ms. McHenry and our sign language teacher Ms. Eckelcamp. I remember we spent a lot of time that year learning how to sign. For some reason the main tool they used was the song "Joy to the World" by Three Dog Night. So to this day I can sign the sentence "Jeremiah was a bullfrog" but I can't say "Where is the bathroom?" This is kind of like my grasp of Spanish; thanks to my diverse elementary school in Brooklyn (which I started once we'd moved back to New York from Austin), I learned to sing entire songs in Spanish but never learned the basics of the language. When I am in the Dominican Republic in April and someone asks me for directions, my only choice will be to say "En mi viejo San Juan/Cuantos sueños forjé/En mis noches de infancia/Mi primera ilusión/Y mis quitas de amor/Son recuerdos del alma."*

*Translation: In my Old San Juan, many dreams I forged in my childhood years... My first illusion, and my grief of love are memories of the soul.

Anyway, back to Meghan and our rumble. Meghan was red-headed and pretty, and I was, as I have previously documented, a total (albeit cute) weirdo:
That's her, behind me in the red penguin outfit. She is obviously jealous of my high-waisted sweatpants and awesome pigtails.

For some reason we had art class in a trailer about 200 yards away from the school proper. So the visual you should have now is: me, looking like a fashion-challenged Punky Brewster, and Meghan, looking like a little princess, sitting in a trailer in Texas making Donkey Kong heads out of paper and paste. I swear I did not provoke her. She just glanced over at my work and gave me a withering look.

"Mine is beautiful," she said in her tiny Marlee Matlin twang. "Yours is ugly." Fightin' words if I ever heard 'em! I totally went Donkey Kong on her ass.

No, just kidding. I started crying. I was seven. And even then I was extraordinarily passive. I'm like Buster from Arrested Development; I curl up into a ball and play dead at the slightest hint of violence.

In case you are wondering, here is what the signs look like:



Do you want to see how it looks in live action, when someone who does NOT resemble middle-aged Raffi does it? Voila:

In second grade, perhaps inspired by her, I made the following book:

It's all about how this girl Cathy learns sign language so that she can learn how to say "Step off, you ginger bitch!" to a deaf girl who insults her sweet video game-inspired sculpture.

Ok, that's not true. It's about how Cathy learns sign language so she can be friends with a deaf girl named Zoelemonoe.

Stop laughing, that part is true. I was totally awesome at making up names.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Family That Blogs Together...

So Jeff started a photo blog. He already has 33 followers and is getting great feedback. Yesterday I made a comment on one of his posts, in which he asked for reactions to a photobooth self-portrait he took on Saturday during our bar crawl. I decided on a tender, loving message ("I'd hit that."*). And he rejected my comment, y'all. Rejected! Apparently he wants his blog to be "professional," unlike a certain person he knows who blogs about running out of underwear and swimming drunkenly with gay men. Whatever, Martha!**

It should be noted that Jeff has never once commented on this blog, which I take as a sign of love. He doesn't defend himself or respond to my one-sided accounts of our interactions; he lets me lord over my own spazzy universe without trying to bring me back to reality. The rest of my family members, bless them, do the same. My dad, who actually had a blog long before I did, comments rarely but always to praise or congratulate me (as he did last week, alerting me that I have more Facebook fans than The New Yorker's political podcast). My mother refrains from commenting, preferring to respond to me privately via email, but has recently taken to threatening that some day she will start commenting using the handle "Big Momma." My sister occasionally comments but reads every day, turning her friends onto the blog as well. I am so lucky to have a family that allows me to defame them on the Internet without protest! Tell-all memoir, here I come!

*And I totally have. I have hit all four of these men... at the same time!

I'm a big ho for guys in ties.

**Have you seen this show? Martha Stewart's daughter and one of her friends just watch Martha's show and make fun of it. It is so random and awesome, plus the best career-boosting manipulation of celebrity parentage I have ever seen. "Whatever, Martha!" is my new favorite saying.

PS: Check out my fancy new ads courtesy of BlogHerAds! If you click on them, you can help me realize my dream of one day working from home wearing only my Bartman T-shirt and underpants (the latter of which I will soon have a surplus of because obviously I will be insanely rich from all of that ad revenue).

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Injuries [ALMOST] Sustained in the Pursuit of Food, Vol. 2

I was such a good little recessionista this morning. I filled a Tupperware container with pre-made pasta (that I have been eating for six days straight and which I now hate with the burning passion I usually reserve for Rush Limbaugh, but there are starving children pretty much everywhere and also who knew that turkey meatballs would start to taste like tainted Spam after a few days in the fridge?), grabbed a container of pineapple and some cottage cheese (I am like the poster child for good nutrition, obviously) and treated myself to two of my coveted Samoas, which I Saran-wrapped and tossed into a paper shopping bag with the rest of my lunch.

I got to work, put my food in the fridge, tossed the paper shopping bag in the kitchen garbage can, and went about my day. I had the cottage cheese for breakfast. It was kind of gross but I just kept thinking “Osteoporosis!” Which, in restrospect, might have made it taste worse—there’s nothing like visualizing bone density while gumming wet, tasteless curds.

The only better diet trick is looking at this while trying to eat. It works for sex, too.

I had a ton to do, so time flew by and suddenly it was time for lunch. I choked down the pasta while reading online gossip and followed it with the pineapple. I was saving the Samoas for that dreaded 4 pm blood sugar drop, which generally makes me reach for the only food substance I have at my desk: a pack of Orbit melon-mint gum. I know that sounds disgusting, and it is; I got a free shipment of every single flavor last year and melon-mint is the last man standing. I have a daily Jedi mind fight with myself over whether to succumb and chew on a tiny stick that tastes like cantaloupe spiked with Ajax or surrender to lethargy.

Anyway, the point is: As Robert Burns wrote, the best laid schemes cookies of mice and men oft go awry. When I went to get my Samoas I realized that they were not in the fridge. Then I realized that I had no memory of actually putting them in the fridge. Slowly, it dawned on me that they were still in the paper shopping bag, which was now at the bottom of a company-wide trash can. [Picture me screaming this next part in warped slow-motion] Nooooooooooooooooooooooo!

I ran into the kitchen and was about to leap into the trash can like I was Cary Elwes from The Princess Bride and the garbage was the fire swamp and the cookies were Buttercup (me and cookies = twoo love, people), but then I noticed our HR director sitting at a table nearby reading a book. She looked up and smiled. If it had been anyone else I might have just gone for it, but this is a person whose specific job it is to fire employees who might have mental illnesses that would interfere with their work, the first signs of which could include digging through a communal trash can for food. I got a glass of water while stealing longing glimpses at the garbage. Oh Samoas, I fought so hard to obtain you (well, if you consider “fighting hard” to mean “blogging and hoping people will send you cookies in the mail”)—and this is the thanks you get? Cookie Monster would rip me a new one.

                                 Me, obviously. Unibrows unite!

Sadly I cannot take credit for this amazing Photoshop artwork.

Later on, after HR left, I went back into the kitchen for another try. But as soon as I lifted off the top of the trash can, I knew I had lost my battle already (again, I used the term “battle,” much like “fight,” loosely). I tossed my bag in at 9:30 am; dozens of people’s half-eaten lunches were now standing between me and my tiny package of cookies. If I were to scavenge for them now, it would certainly be a wet and unpleasant journey through a murky sediment of salad greens, pizza grease, and coffee grounds.

So the bad news is, I lost my Samoas today.

On the other hand, the good news is that at least we know I have some boundaries*.

*If the kitchen door had a lock, however, I wouldn’t even be writing this right now. I would be enjoying the crunchy goodness of toasted coconut, caramel and chocolate, while trying to ignore the stench of salad dressing emanating from my suspiciously stained clothes.

Monday, February 15, 2010

My Fashion Magazine Debut

Just FYI, I am now famous.

Yes, friends, that torso and fine chin in the upper left corner is me. I made Fashion Week Daily, the magazine of Fashion Week.

I don't even mind that my face is covered because it is obscured by the letters "OMG". How perfect. I mean, really. It might as well be a thought bubble coming out of my head.

By the by, my second and third Fashion Week installments for HuffPo are up. Find them here and here.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

1, 2, 3, 4 Tell Me That You Love Me More

I have always loved photobooths. Something about stuffing yourself into a tiny space with loved ones and taking away a strip of instant memorabilia makes the romantic in me swoon. Growing up, my parents had some old photobooth pictures scattered throughout their many albums, and I loved looking at them. Four individual images, all connected, all pieces of the same moment captured in time. They seemed so much better than regular pictures... so much more magical.

One of the many sweet surprises of getting to know Jeff was learning that he also loves photobooths. We never happened upon one in the first few years of dating, but when we got engaged, we decided to use a photobooth to announce our impending wedding. We went to Lakeside Lounge, a bar on Avenue B in Manhattan, and nailed it on the first try.

I didn't have a "theme" for the wedding at the time (except for "fucking awesome," obviously), and one day while perusing a bridal magazine I learned that it was possible to rent photobooths for events. And oh, it was on. The photobooth was a huge hit and we got a rockin' album with snapshots of all of our family and friends from the reception.

Since then, every time time we've stumbled upon a photobooth we've dutifully jumped at the opportunity to make this our "thing."

A month or two after we got married we found one at a bar in Williamsburgh (which we have since forgotten the name and location of):

And then in October of 2008, in California for the wedding weekend of my best friend Anna, we passed by an arcade at the Santa Monica pier and saw one:

We haven't accidentally found another one since, which brings us to the present day. A week ago, Jeff hatched a brilliant plan: in honor of Valentine's Day, we would embark on a bar crawl, hitting as many photobooths as possible. This, of course, made my heart leap up and do a Gene Kelly dance number, probably wearing a sailor suit. Jeff looked up photobooth sites online and made a list of eight locations. He picked me up at 8 in Hell's Kitchen, where I had been covering a fashion show, looking dapper in a suit and tie. I had not planned ahead; because I spent the day going to Fashion Week events and blogging, I was A) wearing incredibly uncomfortable stack-heeled boots (in an attempt to fit in with the fabulous people) and B) carrying my laptop, which over the course of the day seemed to get heavier and heavier until it weighed approximately 40 pounds. Nevertheless, we soldiered on.

Our first stop was for dinner at Trailer Park, which is, as its name suggests, a fun and trashy little diner that serves things like Tater Tots and mac n' cheese. It has a photobooth but Jeff had heard that it was no longer working. Sadly the rumor was true. We ordered beers (for Jeff) and vodka cranberries (for me) and feasted on Taters until we were sated. Seriously, look at the size of this "side order":

Fuck roses. This right here? This is love.

So destination #1 was a bust for photobooths but a win for delicious Tots. Doggie bag in hand, we headed to location #2, the lobby of the Ace Hotel on 29th Street. On the way we had the following conversation:

ME: I'm so glad I took the Tater Tots with me. I feel they're going to come in handy later, like when in a movie there's a gun somewhere and it seems like no big deal but then later the hero has to shoot someone.
JEFF: Are you going to fight someone with Tots?
ME: No, but later when I'm drunk I'll get pukey and then I'll be like, Oh! Tater Tots! And it will be the best thing ever.
JEFF: And then you'll get more pukey.
ME: But it will be worth it.

By the time we arrived at the hotel I was hobbling in pain (and being kind of a pain in the ass about it, though my darling husband took it in stride). Sadly, as soon as we opened the front door we were confronted by a woman with a clipboard who asked us if we were here for "the party." "Uh, no," Jeff said. "Are you guests at the hotel?" she asked. We said no. "Sorry, the entire hotel is closed for a party," she told us. "Even the lobby?" Jeff asked. Apparently, yes. In the words of Cher Horowitz, we were brutally rebuffed! 0 for 2, we hailed a cab to the Lower East Side hoping we would have better luck.

And we did! Our first stop, Otto's Shrunken Head on 14th Street, had a working photobooth (that was, when we arrived, occupied by drunk hipsters, but that was OK by us). Jeff got us drinks and a token for the photobooth, and we discussed potential poses. Should we vogue? Make faces? Make out? "Let's just be natural for this one," I suggested. "We can get creative with the others." We couldn't wait to finish our drinks, so we took them in with us.

Our success (and the vodka) gave us the energy to carry on. Just around the corner was Lakeside Lounge, the site of our engagement photobooth session. Jeff worried that since it was three years later it might not be there anymore...

But it totally was! Two hits in a row! We celebrated with a shared beer.

For our second strip we decided to do some stupid hand-on-face poses, the kind of which are so often seen in Sears portraits.

I wasn't ready for the first flash, so I look super drunk. Awesome. (I was so proud of myself that I ate some of the Tots, which had fallen out of their styrofoam container and into the plastic bag. Yum!)

After this photo was taken, Jeff tried to take a strip by himself, for his website, but they never came out. We decided that maybe it was bad juju to take photos that weren't of both of us.

We walked three blocks to what would have been destination #5, 7B, but it wasn't there. It had been replaced by something called Horseshoe Bar. We went in but found no photobooth, and so hopped in a cab to destination #6, The Smith on 3rd Avenue.

The Smith is an actual restaurant and not a dive bar, and when we first walked in there was nary a photobooth in sight. My intrepid husband went exploring, leaving me at the bar, and returned moments later victorious. It was downstairs, outside of the bathroom, lonely and empty and waiting for us. We decided to go with stupid faces:

My "stupid faces" are, from top to bottom: Lisa Rinna, Cross-Eyed Stroke Victim, Lemon-Sucking Hand Puppet, and Uncontrollable Giggles. Jeff's are Troll Under the Bridge, Humpback of Notre Dame, Lecherous Subway Man, and Arnie Grape.

Jeff got a beer and I sat resting my feet for awhile. "Is it weird that we're just hanging out by the bathroom?" Jeff asked as toilets flushed around us. We decided to continue our pilgrimage over to the Living Room on Ludlow Street. (I threw out the Tots at this point. I was getting cranky and couldn't carry them anymore. I totally regret it. I could be eating them right now.)

The Living Room turned out to be our 4th success of the night. The photobooth was tucked into a crowded corner, but we shoved our way in. By this time it was midnight and we were tipsy and tired. Which, as we all know, is conducive to the relatively low-difficulty "make out" pose:

I know. You're kind of puking right now. Also, I have no idea why Jeff held up money in the last shot. It kind of makes me look like a ho, baby. But I still love you.

We were all the way across town from destination #8 and my feet were in such pain that I could barely walk, so we decided to cheat a little bit and do multiple strips at the Living Room. After all, we had been to no fewer than 7 bars in the span of three hours, 4 of which had working photobooths. And also we were very drunk.

For our next pose we chose the theme "accessories." The plan was for me and Jeff to switch off our hats, earmuffs, and sunglasses in every frame. We did pretty well, we thought, but the booth thought otherwise, spitting out a warped strip with only one clear picture:

The negative image at the bottom is actually pretty cool, plus we got a refund on our $3, which we used for our final pose of the night, the extremely advanced "Simon and Garfunkel":

Hello, darkness my old friend... man, I am amazed that we were able to keep straight faces after six drinks. I almost cracked up in the nose-to-nose photo but I pulled it together. Because obviously I am a total pro at posing, if not at walking or dressing myself or eating without getting sauce in my hair.

So that's it for Valentine's Day 2010. Next year we've decided to carry on the tradition and hit all of the places we missed on this go-round, including bars in Brooklyn and the outer boroughs. It'll be what we give each other, instead of chocolates or flowers or jewelry. Each year we'll collect strips of memories to tuck into albums; someday we'll show our kids. Maybe when we're old we'll frame them all side by side, dozens--maybe hundreds--of moments we spent loving each other. For me, that beats roses any day of the week. It beats Tater Tots, too, which is really saying a lot.

I love you, baby. Happy Valentine's Day.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Crashing Fashion Week, Part One

Hi guys! I'm writing this from a Starbucks in the financial district. I'm in the midst of Fashion Week madness, and I wrote about my first day for The Huffington Post. I still can't believe they let me do this. I totally feel like Eloise, running around in places I'm not supposed to be, making trouble and trying to score free food.

I did, however, see God on Thursday.

Well, close enough.

Check out my post here. I'll be back in action tomorrow with a special Valentine's Day installment which will hopefully make you all throw up in your mouths a little bit.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Bloggers Do It Wearing Stupid T-Shirts

So I am SUPER busy for the next few days and may have to neglect my blogging (the good news? I'm getting to see fashion shows and write about how ridiculous it is that I am allowed anywhere near Bryant Park, and also I get swag like Diet Coke and shaving cream and Zone bars, which I think is basically the models' diet. They eat the shaving cream for the fatty acids and organ toxins).

But before I get to tell you all about my adventures in Zoolanderland, I do have some very important news to share with you.

One: Girl scout cookies? OBTAINED.

The four loves of my life: Jeff, Thin Mints, Samoas (Tagalongs not pictured)

And there are more coming; I have multiple dealers friends who took pity on me and my addiction.

Two, and kind of related: I own this shirt:

The rejected slogan? "Snackers do it crumby."

In fact, I am wearing right now as I embark upon my weekly Project Runway recap, which I have to finish tonight because tomorrow I'm going to the Project Runway Bryant Park fashion show! Maybe I should just wear the shirt and my harem pants. I wonder if I could make Michael Kors cry...

I'll update you tomorrow night, if I'm not passed out with my face in a plate of disco fries (here's hoping!)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Little Background on the Background

A new reader asked me in the comments what the background image of this blog is. And I was like, how can I not have told you guys about this?

Simply put, the background image of my blog is the best drawing I have ever done, and proof that I have been a sassy curmudgeon for a long, long time. Behold:

Click to enlarge. You will not be sorry.


The year: 1985. I was drawing on the floor of my Dad's office in Texas. I heard him say "Fuck!" to someone on the phone. I asked him how to spell it and he did (Awesome Parenting 101). This drawing hangs prominently in our apartment. I find that no matter what kind of day I've had, it makes me feel better. Either it's "Fuck! Life fucking sucks sometimes," or "Fuck! What a fan-fucking-tastic fucking day!"

Fuck! I'm glad I shared this with you. Sharing is caring.

A Snow Day Post That Somehow Covers Both The Bible And Kevin Federline

For those of you who don't live on the East Coast, there is some Day After Tomorrow shit going on here. I'm actually writing this from a room in the New York Public Library, where I'm trapped with Jake Gyllenhaal and that bitch Emmy Rossum, who keeps trying to distract Jake from saving us from wolves and floods with her big saucer eyes. If she starts singing anything from Phantom of the Opera, I'm going to kick her into the flaming pile of Gutenberg bibles we're burning to keep warm.

But seriously, we got some serious snow (did my using the word "serious" twice in one sentence drive home the seriousness of this situation? Because it is serious. Seriously). Enough snow to make New York seem suddenly quaint and quiet, which is saying a lot.

This photo doesn't do the blizzard justice. A photo of my now four foot-wide hair would have been better.

I went to work this morning because the snow didn't seem like a big deal, but once I got there everyone was saying how it was going to get a lot worse over the course of the day and that if the subways stopped running we would be trapped. This scenario seemed to upset most people, but not me; ever since I saw Career Opportunities, in which Jennifer Connelly and Frank Whaley are stranded overnight in a Target, I have wanted nothing more than to have that happen to me.

Granted, my office isn't as fun as a Target—no roller skates, for instance, though we do have a hand-truck for delivering packages that would make a fabulous scooter—but we have a TON of booze and a vending machine full of Doritos, and if Dermot Mulroney wanted to break in and hold me hostage all I have to say is, the more the merrier, Dermot. Can I call you Dermie? Man, now I really want to Netflix that movie.

Anyway, long story short I did not stay at work all day and made it home safely, if wetly. Which left me with some down time, which I am naturally going to fill with scans of the ridiculous tabloid headlines I was fortunate enough to read during the subway ride back to Brooklyn. (My iPod ran out of juice and so I had to buy disposable reading material. I chose Life & Style and In Touch—I had to buy them both because each takes approximately three minutes to "read"... even less if, like me, you skip over anything that mentions a Kardashian or Carrie Underwood's dream wedding.)

I hope you enjoy these as much as I do:

Hey ladies! What's your type? Gay 'N Syncer or fat 'N Syncer? The world is your oyster!

This is actually from the biblical In Touch, In Testament. Other choice headlines include "Low-Cal Secrets of the Last Supper" and "Apostles: They're Just Like Us!"

Well, you made her crazy! And temporarily bald! And you are the reason Britney & Kevin: Chaotic exists (not that I saw all five episodes or anything) ! GO AWAY NOW.

Although Johnny boy is clean-shaven, I'm going to go with... his beard.

Happy snow day, East Coasters. I hope you're staying dry and not trapped in a Target somewhere. But if you are, tell Dermot I say hi. And if you need to keep warm, I bet there are some Britney & Kevin: Chaotic DVDs you can burn (for real, do not watch them, they will EAT YOUR SOUL).


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Pillow Talk With Tom, Chuck and Burt

Now that I've needlessly Internet-bullied a burgeoning blogger, I think I need a time-out... in the form of tactile, mustachioed pillows of rugged 80s hunks, obviously (thanks, Hipstercrite).

I think it goes without saying that the only thing better than cozying up in my hopefully forthcoming Pajama Jeans with a season's worth of Breaking Bad and a few dozen boxes of Samoas will be doing it while cozying up to Tom Motherfucking Selleck (little known fact: that's his actual middle name. He is bad-ass).

Rrrrrrowr. They don't call him "Magnum" for nothin'.

YOU CAN TOUCH THE 'STACHE! Man, who'd have thought I'd want to hump a pillow in this battery-operated age? (Note to self: your dad reads this. Simmer.)

But in all seriousness, one of my first crushes was on Tom Selleck in Three Men and a Baby. Even though I was only seven, Tom struck me as trustworthy--between him, Ted Danson and The Gutt, it was pretty obvious that Tom was the only one who would think twice before putting an infant through a rinse cycle. It was he who taught me that a bangin' 'stache = moral fortitude.

Chuck Norris, whose visage graces another one of these magical pillows, also taught me an important lesson. One day while flipping through an old fashion magazine I found an ad for Right Guard deodorant, starring Walker, Texas Ranger himself.

The tagline? "The best defense is not to offend."

Touché, sensei*. Nunchuks are no match for sweet-smelling pits. 

The company also sells a Burt Reynolds pillow, but it kind of creeps me out.

Even though he has no hands, I get the impression the black velvet Bandit could cop a feel if you fell asleep on him, and you'd wake up pregnant.

SUPER SUBTLE HINT FOR JEFF: Someone wants the Tom Selleck for her birthday. Someone who most definitely is NOT attracted to objects or Hawaii-based private investigators. 

*"Touché, Sensei" would make a GREAT movie. It would be a caper in which a bumbling British detective had to be paired up with a reserved and serious mixed martial arts master to bust an undercover fight club. It should star Mr. Bean and Chow Yun Fat. You are welcome, Hollywood.

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