Friday, May 22, 2009

Let Yourself Go

Wednesday for the first time - like ever in my professional life - I wore my hair in a pony tail to work. Maybe that doesn't seem like a big deal, but people I'm telling you normally l blow my hair out and put on an extra coat of mascara just to take out the trash. A pony tail to work, for me represents an unprecedented level of lazy personal grooming*.

Now that the deed is done and the pony tail has been debuted, and even though I kind of liked it and many of my coworkers remarked about how nice it looked, I worry that it's all downhill from here. To prove my point - the pants I wore on Wednesday began to disintegrate shortly after my arrival to the office, probably dying of embarrassment from being seen in public with me and my lazy-ass pony tail head. The hems of both legs came undone. Both legs - what the frigg?

I handled the situation with relative style and ease like fuckin' McGuyver. Not really. I stapled the hems of my pants. With a stapler. I walked around all day with the hems of my pants visibly stapled and I wore a pony tail. The end is nigh and it's all my fault. I'm sorry.

Not convinced that end of times is come? Today I wore open toed sandals to work. Stock your shelters.

In my defense, I'm dog tired dude. I'm sorry to "dude" you, but holy shit I'm having a difficult time adjusting to my new summer schedule. I've been getting up at the crack of my ass (otherwise known as 5:30am), hopping directly in the shower and running off to work as soon as I'm dry. Stopping briefly, of course, on my way out the door to throw on some clothes and slop some coffee into a travel mug.

My old schedule had me getting out of bed at 6:30, then schlepping around in slippers and a haze for as long as I needed, taking my damn sweet time for the wake up portion of my day.

Coffee at my leisure.


Sure, why not? Don't mind if I do.

I was pretty much able to take my damn sweet time to make myself beautiful and plan my outfit for work too. It was good times.

Anyhoo... I do not remember the last time I wore a pony tail in public that I wasn't performing yard work and even then I never crossed our property line. I do a quick mirror check and touch up my lipstick to go to the window to yell at the neighbors dog.

Do you understand that I am tightly wound?

I cannot explain and have no excuse for the open toed sandals. They are cute and it's the Friday beginning a holiday weekend so there was no one at the office today to see and judge my janky toes. Besides it was a half day so get off my back.

*Pony tails are pefectly fine and I have seen that many of my fellow lady folk are able to pass off a stylish, professional pony tail and any number of inventive and chic bun, updo and twisty hair creations, but I personally do not have that level of confidence. When I attempt to step out the door wearing a pony tail I hear my mothers voice in my head asking me with a sneer, "how much longer will it take for you to get ready dear? I can wait if you'd like to finish combing your hair".

So technically I don't have a problem with pony tails, my mother does. Or at least the voice in my head that sounds like my mother does. Whatever - bottom line is: Pony tails are fine, but not for me. I can't poop in the woods or wear flip flops either, but those are entirely different topics, although the source of all of my quirks and neurosis is the same.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

An Open Letter To - you know who you are...

Kelly Bensimon is a tool.

Dear People of Grand Rapids Who Enjoy Jogging On Busy City Streets During Rush Hour,

Although personally I don't understand the thrill of running, or any other boob jostling activity for that matter, I would like to state for the record that I thoroughly respect your commitment to fitness. It's totally cool.

What I do not fully understand however is why some of you people insist on doing your running during rush hour on some of the busiest streets in the city. I know lots of people who like to run but, as far as I know, I don't know anybody in their right mind that enjoys endangering the lives of themselves and others in traffic.

You are a hazard.

Besides, c'mon people, it's Grand Rapids! It's not exactly a bustling metropolis. I realize that it's spring and you're all excited to remove your snow boots for a few weeks, but all you need to do is just move your silly ass over one block in any direction and you'll be on a nice quiet side street with leafy green trees, chirping birdies, extra wide sidewalks and periodic speed bumps that cause what little automobile traffic there is to slow down and be more more likely to see you and not run your silly ass down.

Also there are many other safe choices in the city including several public parks that have paved trails designed specifically for such activities as jogging and running.

But you surely are not agog at this news. I mean since there are so many other safe alternatives I'm starting to wonder that perhaps you prefer to do your running on a busy street at such a busy time of day on purpose. But why?

Does sucking in large lungfuls of car exhaust give an extra boost to your runners high?

Do you enjoy the dirty looks people give you and the bad karma you are stirring up when you hold up traffic because some poor, innocent lady in a VW is trying to turn left into Taco Bell and has to wait 3 extra seconds for you to jog yourself clear of the entrance? Do you?

All I can say is jogging on the busiest street in the city at the busiest time of the day doesn't make you glamorous. It makes you an inconsiderate shit for brains.

Some people have had a long hard day at work and are pretty eager to grab a quick bite to eat and get home safely without having to worry about smearing your silly ass all over the pavement.

So get the fuck out of the way.

If you like running on this street maybe you should try running on it when it's not between the hours 5:15pm and 6pm on a fucking weeknight.

Again I must refer to the fact that this is Grand Rapids. If you could only just keep your long pants on a bit longer. Wait a scant 20 minutes to take your public airing and you will find that rush hour in this sleepy burg will have ended and innocent people in their cars won't have work so hard to avoid killing you.

I'm telling you it's a strain.

Cut it out.

Love, Lady

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

In a Sentimental Mood

Gwen, my very good blogger friend over at Everything I Like Causes Cancer has asked a favor of her readership:

"I want you to do me a favor. Tonight when you get home from work, or today while the kiddos are napping, go find your clothing/footwear/accessory equivalent of my pajama top and take a picture of the revered item. Post the picture on your own blog tomorrow and tell us the story behind it. You don't have to link back to this post because I don't get fussy about stuff like that but please do come back and leave a comment so we can find and enjoy your stories."

The request was pretty specifically about clothing, accessories or footwear and I have simply never been one to get terribly attached to that kind of stuff. I outgrow the something, diet and by the time whatever the thing is fits again it's out of style or totally moth eaten. For the most part to me - it's just clothes.

MDH, on the other hand has 3 boxes in the basement filled with rotting concert t-shirts and such treasured items as the suit he wore when he went on his first job interview after college in 1987 when his waist was a size 32. He accused me of being heartless, barbaric and cruel when I suggested on my last purge that we should pack up his old size medium ski pants and give them to charity. I have known this man for 10 years and in this time he has never once even hinted at going skiing or been close to anything sized medium besides a pizza.

I purge my closet a couple of times a year and give away anything that I have not worn for 3 years to charity, so there is literaly nothing in my closet or any of my dressers that is more than 5 years old and nothing in particular that I couldn't part with if push came to shove.

Except this:

It would figure that the one thing I have in my closet of any sentimental value to me has a story relating to my husband. I wore it on our first date. A blind date.

He took me to a UMass football game and mentioned in passing while we were making plans over the phone that the school colors were maroon and white so the night before our date I went out and bought this maroon cardigan. It wasn't expensive or particularly cute, but I wore it the next day with a long sleeved white t-shirt and khaki pants. When I met him for our date he was bowled over that someone he had never even met in person made the effort to wear the right colors.

He was impressed and the rest is history.

I wore it 3 or 4 times after the date before casually tossing it in my laundry basket, never realizing that it was wool. (I got at NY & Co. so I assumed it was acrylic or some other craptastic fabric.) Basically it turned into a hand puppet in the wash. I was able to stretch it out so that it was larger, but it remained freakishly mishapen. It's all mushy now and has texture not dissimilar to one of our cat's dried up hairballs. It's kind of gross.

I won't give it to charity though for fear that some poor and needy soul might actually buy this hideous thing and wear it in public.

You know if Gwen had asked me to make her a sandwich I would have sliced it into quarters, cut the crusts off and given her soup and an extra pickle spear on the side. That's how I roll. So even though they are not quite the kind of items she asked for here's a couple more pictures of things around the house that I'm sentimental about:

My little Baily's coffee cup. A present from my precious aunt Jesse

My teapot collection

There's more stuff, but if I don't hit publish right this instant I'm going to be late to meet my friend Rachel at the movies. Have a wonderful evening. I'm planning to. Please forgive any mispellings or grammatical errors. I've gotta haul ass.


Monday, May 4, 2009

A Very Long Meme Just for You

My back is out again. Two times in less than 4 weeks. I'm scared people. I've finally found a doctor and I'm going to make an appointment today (no worries).

Anyhoo... I'm feeling good enough to sit in my office chair today and complete this meme that I found at Untitled Blogger Project (I've been lurking over there for awhile and have finally added him to my blog roll) who in turn got it from A World So Small. The woman who writes A World So Small is English (I assume) so I had to translate some parts of the meme (pounds to dollars, favourite to favorite, etc..) to American to avoid any confusion. Those whacky Brits and the rest of the English speaking world outside the US of A and their crazy spellings!

What is your current obsession?
Oddly enough considering that last paragraph, I am recently obsessed with anything having to do with Charles Dickens. I blame Masterpiece Classic. They’ve given us the most amazing version of Oliver Twist that I cannot imagine will ever be topped with Timothy Spall as a most sympathetic Fagin. They’ve replayed the version of David Copperfield from several years back (starring the adorable Daniel Radcliffe) and given us Little Dorrit. I’d never read Little Dorrit so I was waiting for each new episode with giggling glee.

This week it’s The Old Curiosity Shop, which I have also never read and know almost nothing about. I recorded the first episode on the DVR last night, but sadly must wait until next week when MDH comes home from Texas as I have infected him with the Dickens obsession now too and he would be very upset if I watched it without him.

What is your weirdest obsession?
See above… but MDH would probably tell you my weirdest obsession is The Sims. Speaking of which, The Sims 3 releases next month. I'm giddy.

What are you wearing today?
An old, faded Mickey Mouse t-shirt, black stretchy pants and my most comfy slippers. It’s a stay home from work with back pain outfit.

What's for dinner today?
I don’t even care. I’m home alone, MDH is conveniently out of town and my back hurts again, so I’ll just take whatever looks good that’s in reach, cram it into my mouth and start chewing. The cat had better stay clear away.

Why is today special?
I am able to stand up straight without grimacing for the first time since Friday and I found a new doctor.

What would you like to learn to do?
Play bluegrass fiddle.

What languages can you speak?
English and I know enough French to avoid ordering organs and innards in restaurants. I don’t care how artful and lovingly kidneys or intestines are prepared, I don’t want to put them in my mouth.

What are you listening to right now?
The fan on my computer humming and birdies chirping outside the window.

What is your favorite weather?
When there is a bit of coolness in the air, like early mornings in the summer. Jacket weather. Today.

What is your most challenging goal right now?
Trying to maintain my self-esteem and a positive attitude after not getting the jobs I wanted (and deserved).

What do you think about the person who tagged you?
Well, I tagged myself didn't I? So I’ll say adorable and back pain-tastic.

If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished, anywhere in the world, where would you like it be?
Fourth Street, Victorian Village in Columbus Ohio. I like to dream big. It’s only a few blocks over from where we used to live. I always liked the houses on that street, a wee bit fancier than ours. The location is perfect. Off street parking, walking distance to the Short North, close to the park, close to the highway, close to all my good friends that I love and miss so much. (That picture is from the front porch of our old house in Vic Village).

What would you like to have in your hands right now?
A grilled cheese and tomato sandwich.

What would you like to get rid of?
I’ve already bitched out it on this blog several times – our hot tub. It’s an unsightly disgrace and a blight on our back yard.

If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go?
You know, I’m pretty happy right here at home in my office. Here I go, dreaming big again. I’ve got the blinds thrown all the way open and I can see our beautiful back yard (the hot tub is out of view from here). Turtle is lounging in the open window (and yes, I opened it myself - the office window is easy), looking so regal, and I can hear birdies chirping. What else could I ask for?

Which language do you want to learn?
Portuguese. I love that “shush, shush” sound that they have at the end of so many of their words. It’s soft and sexy.

What do you look for in a friend?
I know it when I see it. Mainly though, I look for a certain kind of knowing appreciation for the ridiculous. I have to be able to laugh with my friends.

Who do you want to meet in person?
I would love to go to a mixer featuring all of the people who write the blogs on my blog roll. And Laird Hamilton.

What's your favorite type of music?
I like almost all types of music as long as it is genuine and required a modicum of talent to create. My current “most recently played” list on my iPod features Charles Mingus, Diana Krall, New Order and Joy Division pretty heavily.

What's the favorite piece of clothing in your own closet?
My new jeans. I just got them back from the tailor (of course) and they are perfect in every way.

What is your dream job?
In real life I’d like to be a Project Manager or Training Manager.

In fantasy land I’d be a Therapist or an Advice Columnist.

Any favorite models?
Fuck no. I think it’s idiotic and totally insane that people are famous and worshipped to the degree that they are just for being nice to look at. Do something else.

If you had $100 now, what would you spend it on?
A new spine.

Favorite designer?
Karl Lagerfeld

Fashion pet peeve?
The list is long (and so is this meme! hello? are you still reading this?), but here are some top contenders:

1. Fake tans by themselves are bad enough, but I especially hate them when combined with fashion pet peeve #2.

2. People who have freakishly overly whitened teeth. You look like a clown. A scary clown.

3. Muffin top. Nobody wants to see your gut hanging out.

4. That messy, uncombed hairstyle on regular men. I'm speaking to you co-worker. You are not handsome enough to pass this off. Unless you are David Beckham (and you are not) then messy, uncombed hair, no matter how much product you use, makes you look like you just escaped from the loony hatch.

5. I firmly believe that the faux-hawk is the mullet of the new millenium. It's over guys. Stop it.

Do you admire anyone's style?
My blogger friend WendyB. She posts lots of pictures of herself (she won the coveted Drysdale Award last year in the category of "Blog with the Most Pictures of the Blogger") at glamorous parties and locales. Somehow she always looks completely different, but always, always looks beautiful and the epitome of stylish.

Describe your personal style:
Tailored. I’m significantly overweight (it’s the truth, I’m just being honest, not self depreciating), so I like to make sure that my clothes fit properly and that (in public at least) I look put together at all times. I take a lot of my clothes to be tailored to make sure I get the best fit possible. My worst fear (fashion-wise I mean, my actual worst fear is a tie between being trampled to death in a large crowd of people and having all of my teeth fall out) would be that someone would describe me as looking “sloppy”.

Friday, May 1, 2009

The Great Indoors

Earlier this week I was trying to catch up with some of my blog peeps and came across this camping meme that Tara over at Eclectic Spaghetti had done awhile back. She didn't tag me or anything, but I started mentally answering the questions and decided I'd go ahead and start typing.

1. When did you last sleep in a tent?

In 1976. I was 9 years old and attending a Parents Without Partners camping event with my then best friend Blondie and her single-in-the-swinging 1970's mom "Ginger". Ginger was a mom, but she was also a stone fox and part of the reason I decided at such a young age that getting married was for the birds. Ginger had all the men at camp (divorced, embittered, balding and be-paunched though they were) wrapped around her little finger.

I seem to have wandered off on a tangent here. Where was I ? Oh yes... sleeping in a tent. It sucked donkey balls. The ground was hard and damp and I didn't sleep a wink all night and when I complained everyone made fun of me, called me a baby and seemed to make extra effort to flip my canoe.

2. What comes to mind when you think about relieving yourself in the great outdoors?


Having established myself as the pansy, complaining, non-camping puss in the group, the children of the un-partnered parents (who BTW were pretty busy ignoring their already disenfranchised progeny while they tried to get laid and score Quaaludes) thought it was a laugh riot to sneak up on me and push me to the ground every time I tried to pee in the bushes. As a result I spent the entire weekend bathed in streams of my own urine. (In retrospect, maybe that explains my frequent canoe flips. I probably stunk to high heaven and they were trying to give me a cleansing rinse.)

At this point I had resigned myself to cramping and abdominal distention because if I was unable to even pee in peace then forget about trying to have a bowel movement. I would rather have died. Maybe I would have too had the PWP camping trip been any longer than 3 days. Anyhoo... I decided then and there that I would never attempt to shit in the woods again.

3. Where’s the best place you ever went camping?

A diamond suite at Caesar's Palace, Las Vegas.

4. What’s your favorite camp food?

Those little pies you make with slices of bread you squish together with an iron you put on the fire. My family called them Whoopee Pies.

5. What’s your sleeping bag like?

It's Italian, round and furry and about 6'2.