Monday, April 29, 2013

What a Scream

As I've mentioned, His Awesomeness and I have been suffering from a cold/flu/lurgy-type thing. He got it first, after going out and about and staying out way past his bedtime. Proof that going out and doing stuff is way overrated.

It's terribly inconvenient when we're both sick at the same time. The other night, we ordered in burritos because neither one of us had the energy to heat up the leftover Chinese food.

Being sick meant we missed not one, but two birthday parties this weekend. I'm sure our friends are delighted that we kept our germs the fuck away from them and theirs. On the bright side, our continuing listlessness means that we tried out a different Chinese takeout joint and found one that doesn't put soy sauce in the fried rice AS A RULE. Oh, fried rice, I've missed you so. Also? They're so close that the food was here in fifteen minutes and they let us pay with a credit card over the phone.

I just hope the other takeout joint doesn't buy them and ruin them too.

Way back before HA infected me with the cold that never ends, I went with a friend to see Munch's The Scream at MoMA before they have to give it back. It is gorgeous in person. My cell phone couldn't do it justice, but there's a picture here. The lithograph (which my cell phone did capture OK) and all the pop culture appearances have really trivialized it, but wow that is some art right there.

There were a handful of other Munch works and wow, he was one bleak fella. I mean, they hung The Scream right near the Van Gogh's and we all know Vincent had issues, but next to Munch, Van Gogh is downright exuberant. He loved color and he let it show. With Munch, it's more like the other kids wouldn't let him use all the crayons.

In the room after The Scream, there were a bunch of Matisse's, so we had a seat to recover. Matisse liked life, so he's a good antidote to Munch.

We also looked at some works by Mondrian, which are not just like those big paintings they do on home decorating shows to take up a big amount of space, but try telling that to your in-laws. Hell, there are days when even I'm not buying it. We sat for a little while in front of Broadway Boogie Woogie and listened to the free recording compare it to jazz. And then it all made sense. Because no one gets jazz either.

So what do these two stories have to do with each other? Well, I went out and got Expressionist-induced ennui. HA went out and caught a cold. So I win. Except I lose because I caught his cold. And he understands jazz.

And how was your weekend?


Friday, April 26, 2013

Surrounded By The Crazy

Doctor Tom Saves The Day!
Photo credit: aeu04117
So the other day I had the dreaded two-doctor appointment day. I can't schedule them too close together because that's asking for trouble, but no matter how well I try to plan it, I still end up with way too much time away from my desk (translation: not making any money). It's a good thing I wasn't rushed because I kept encountering people who didn't seem to understand how things work.

After appointment #1, I went to a generic Midtown deli that has plenty of seating upstairs, and the mediocre food that leads to empty seats. While I was eating lunch, a large stroller (aka baby SUV) appeared next to my table. A couple and their adorable baby sat in a booth right next to me. The couple took out a baby plate and a thermos of baby food, and proceeded to feed the baby. They may have even changed baby's diaper right there in the dining area, but I was really trying not to look to close at that activity. 

I really felt like pointing out to them that it's customary to purchase food items from a restaurant before taking up space in it and blocking the aisles, but whatever. Assholes are going to be assholes. And they'd carried the baby SUV up the stairs past who knows how many store employees, so not my problem. At one point, I saw the mom drinking a fountain soda, so I figured they eventually bought a soda, but now that I think of it, this wasn't McDonald's. I don't think they have soda machines.

After a while I moseyed uptown towards appointment #2. Upon discovering that the secret Starbucks in the Sony store on Madison Avenue was closed for the day, I went to another generic Midtown deli to get my afternoon tea and wait for my appointment time.

At generic Midtown deli #2, I decided to use the restroom before leaving. I got on line behind a guy who was standing under the big "Restroom" sign. And we waited. And waited. And then the guy gave up and walked away. I got closer to the bathroom door and saw the sign on the door itself about how there's a key at the counter. I was about to go to the counter and ask for the key (in case we'd been waiting outside an empty bathroom) when an employee came out of the stockroom and offered to unlock the door for me. He knocked on the door a bunch of times and called out if there was someone in there, determined that there was and didn't unlock the door.

So I waited, wondering if I really wanted to use the restroom after someone who'd been in there that long. Until another employee came along, went through the same routine and unlocked the door on an empty bathroom. Once inside, I noticed that there's a physical latch on the door separate from the lock, so the first employee could've tried the lock and wouldn't have been able to walk in on anyone anyway. 

I arrive for appointment #2 a few minutes before 2:30. I sit waiting for half an hour, which is pretty unusual for this place. So I finally get up to ask how much longer it's going to be. Before I open my mouth, the receptionist informs me snippily that my appointment was for 3:30. I was so taken aback, all I could say was, "That's news to me." They must've entered the appointment incorrectly when they called to reschedule it because the doctor was going to be out of the office when I was originally supposed to come in. And apparently, the receptionist has a tragic disorder that prevented her from telling me about my appointment time when I first came in and still had time to go away and do something instead of sit in an uncomfortable wooden chair for an hour.

Finally a new assistant took me back and commented on how early I'd come in. So I let her have it about how my appointment was for 2:30 and they didn't bother saying anything. I would feel bad about telling off an innocent bystander, but then she tried to give me someone else's dental appliance. I was there for a new dechompinator, as discussed at my last appointment. But she showed me this massive thing that I've never seen before and would not take my word for it when I said that it wasn't mine.

So I got pissed off. 

She went to get a more senior assistant and she must've told the office manager about the timing because someone else came in, calling me Ms. Aniston (new pet peeve: reason #1 for taking my husband's name was that I was tired of people screwing up my last name, and now people mistake me for Jennifer Aniston. Not in person, but you know what I mean.) and apologizing about the wait.

The senior assistant came in and asked what the problem was. So I explained about the giant not mine gaggy torture device and how I was just there for a new dechompinator, and she was like, yeah, it's right here (indicating something that looked like what I expected). Things went smoothly from there, though the new assistant came back in and didn't apologize for trying to put someone else's dental appliance into my mouth, or insisting that she was right.

Maybe Jennifer Aniston sees the same doctor and she's getting a new giant gaggy torture device/dental appliance.

Have you been surrounded by the crazy lately, or is it just me?

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Shat and the Not So Mei Fun

ren ren singapore mei fun
Photo credit: goodiesfirst
His Awesomeness has a flu, lurgy thing complete with fever and awesome dreams. Here's his latest:


I dreamed that William Shatner had opened up a family Italian restaurant and karaoke singing course. The idea was that there would be karaoke nights 2 or 3 nights a week at the Italian restaurant and if you went and sang a song in front of everyone, you would get a certificate saying that you had graduated from the William Shatner Singing Course.

How much does this need to happen in real life? Very much.

I am currently rocking the zinc lozenges because I'm really not in a lurgy mood. I've even become obsessive with the natural hand sanitizer I bought at the food co-op and have managed to remain relatively healthy despite the mercurial weather.

As is our wont when one of us has a cold, we ordered chinese takeout for dinner from our usual place. Which has apparently changed names, location and recipes. We called them from HA's cell phone's stored contacts, so we know we called our usual place, but when the food arrived, it seemed different. And the menu had a different restaurant name and address on it. 

Alas, for me and all my food sensitivities, this was a fucking disaster. Because they've decided to add oyster sauce to everything. Including my mei fun, hold the soy sauce. (I order mei fun because you can get it without sauce. Unlike lo mein. No, I don't know why lo mein must never be parted form it's sauce.) Now, it's not soy itself that gives me migraines, it's just soy sauce. Something about the fermenting process. So I wasn't taking any chances with the oyster sauce. Which they'd also added to the wonton soup. 

When we called to complain, they kept protesting that lots of people like the new soup and we kept explaining about the allergies. You would think that if you call up and specify that you don't want any soy sauce in a dish that doesn't usually come with soy sauce, they might inquire if you're OK with oyster sauce. You would be wrong.

I got a migraine either from the spoonful of wonton soup I had before discovering the problem, or from from having to call and repeatedly explain about food sensitivities. You'd think they'd be on top of this shit what with all the havoc MSG can wreak on people, but you'd be wrong.

They did bring us some sauce-free mei fun and the "old style" soup which still managed to look different from the actual old soup.

There are so few takeout dishes I can safely eat and now we have to find a whole new restaurant. On the bright side, Chinese takeout joints are as common in Brooklyn as banks and Duane Reade drug stores, so ya know, lots of places to try. Too bad none of them are actual restaurants that you can trust not to pull shady nonsense like changing their name, location and recipes.  I'm tempted to post to the local e-mail list asking if anyone knows what happened, but I'm not sure I want to know.

What's your usual go-to take out when you're under the weather?

Monday, April 22, 2013

The Ladies

Perspective: Lecture hall
Photo credit: al-taqi
By now you've probably heard of Katelyn Campbell, the West Virginia high school senior who refused to attend an abstinence-only lecture at her school. Her principal threatened to contact her chosen college to tell them she was a trouble-maker, the ACLU and the wonderful world of the internets got involved and the principal now looks like an even bigger ass than when he did when he thought up this bullshit mandatory lecture in the first place.

It got me thinking of a certain assembly at my high school in my junior year. I was taking an Advanced Placement Biology test (during the second period of a two-period class), when we hear over the loudspeakers, "Will all the ladies report to Kingsman Hall?" We all looked up at the teacher, who said, "I won't tell if you don't," and we went back to our test. 

In 4 years, this was the only assembly where they didn't give us any advanced warning. They had special schedules - C days, D days, etc. that had a block of time for an assembly and shortened all the other periods accordingly. So we'd know about these things days in advance, and no one was ever expected to miss a test or a class for a pep rally, or whatever. My AP Bio teacher clearly hadn't expected this announcement. So this was exceedingly weird.

I finished the test before the end of the period and went to the library because I didn't want to go to the assembly late and explain about the test. Also, the whole thing sounded like bullshit anyway.

The period ended, and I proceeded to my Latin class. It was the optional third year of Latin, so the entire class was 9 guys and me. There were still no girls in the hallways as the classes changed. I was stopped two, maybe three times by teachers asking why I wasn't in the assembly. Each time, I answered, "I was taking a test," brazen as you please and they let me go on my way. No detention, no sending me down to the assembly. Nothing. 

Which is good because I was not going to be the only person missing Latin class because of some mysterious summoning of every student with two X chromosomes. I was nowhere near the rabble rouser I wish I was back then, but I was not about to let arbitrary nonsense come between me and keeping up with the boys. 

Later on, I asked my friends what the hell the assembly was about. The administration wanted to yell at us about dress code violations and making out in the hallways with our boyfriends. Because apparently the guys had no responsibility in the making out incidents.

Inappropriate behavior on the part of the students? Arguably. Inappropriate to only call out the female portion of the student body? Definitely. Expecting them to miss classes and exams to listen to this nonsense? Idiotic.

Doing so while the baseball coach is sexually abusing members of his team? Reprehensible.

And yes, I think it will always come down to that for me. Because we were subjected to a lot of stupid shit at my high school. And now that I know how much the school administration didn't have its own house in order, so many of the rules seem even more stupid and arbitrary. 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Random Stuff Is Random

I have another new piece up on YourTango, this time about Oversharing Moms

Things I have heard from the apartment directly above mine in the past two weeks:
  • Some sort of Christian church choir music, played very loudly. The guy who lives there and is home all day was singing along at some points.
  • Chanting, or a perhaps Buddhist nature. Coming from the same guy. Maybe he's doing a religion of the week thing.
  • The guy's phone vibrating. I swear, it's like that episode of the IT crowd where they soup up a phone to vibrate really, really hard. Because regular vibrations aren't enough for real techies.
Oh, here. Just watch it. Crank up the volume, because it's really quiet for some reason.



Louis C.K. has finally gotten a handle on the whole male violence/unfunny rape joke thing and has come  up with a funny, feminist bit about rape. No, really. He was only about halfway there when he discussed the issue with Jon Stewart on The Daily Show, but he's since finished the trip.

Share random stuff in the comments. I need all the randomness I can get right now.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Raindrops on Roses

Raindrops On A Rose
Photo credit: audreyjm529
I'm abstaining from the worrying about safety that's going on in NYC, because this isn't about us. It happened to Boston and it's about them. And the marathon runners from around the world who traveled to participate. 

Also, I'm just so tired of being scared that all terrorists domestic, international and otherwise can go fuck themselves. I've over the whole fucking thing. Blame Georgie B and all the nimrods in NYC office buildings who increased security whenever the security level was raised to Orange outside of NYC. Because buildings that housed cancer treatment centers and banks that no one could ever remember the name of are totally valid targets of international terrorists who probably couldn't name five major US cities.

Anyhoodle, so instead let's talk about escapism and the things we escape with.

When I need to bury my head, I go for:

  • The True Blood books. I haven't seen the HBO series yet, but I'm told they have very little in common. Just characters with the same names, vampires, a lots of sex. Hot sex. Damn, this woman can write sex. While never using the phrase "throbbing member" I might add. And she writes great romance that never makes me want to smack Sookie, so yay for that.
  • Fan fiction. I have some Buffy and Torchwood fan fiction loaded up on my Kindle. I made the mistake of reading one piece of Buffy fan fic one day and lost several hours. It was one page on the web, but over 100 pages in, well, pages. Hence the Kindle-fication. 
  • Adding movies and TV shows to my Netflix queue. It's like shopping, but without the added expense.
  • Baking pies. I swear to God, I'm gonna get the hang of making a pie crust from scratch. It's just challenging enough to grab all of my attention, distracting me from whatever. And wailing away on the butter with the pastry cutter to mix it into the flour is a nice way to release some aggravation.
  • Knit korknisses (little elf dolls, if you don't want to click). I must've done 200 of them by now, including the 150 I did for my brother's wedding favors. I can finish one in about half an hour. Then I make then climb all over HA. Which is fun.
OK, your turn. What's your favorite escapism? Share links and suggestions in the comments.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Let's Talk About Sexy Fun Times

SEX
Photo credit: je@n
In case you missed it, I have a piece up on YourTango about sexploration. Sexy fun times, indeed.

Now, this is going to sound weird coming from someone who likes to curse as much as I do. And who just published an article about role playing. The sexy kind, not the kind with elves. Unless that's what you're into. No judgement here.

But in the doctor's office the other day, I spied one of the Bachelors on the cover of People Magazine declaring that he and his chosen bachelorette were going to wait until their wedding night to have sex.*

Instead of thinking, " Yeah, right. Like you're going to still be a couple three weeks from now," like a normal person, I thought, "Oh, fer fuck's sake. Stop telling us about your sex life!" I don't give a flying fuck. Is he secretly gay? Are they lying? I so do not care.

My grandmother (the Catholic one) once told me that in her day they didn't think sex was bad, they just didn't talk about it. I didn't really see how these two things were exactly compatible at the time, but I'm starting to. If there is anything I learned in all those years of Catholic school, it's that no one talks about sex as much as people who aren't doing it. Or, presumably, the people in a tizzy worrying that their kids might do it, so they make with the purity rings and chastity balls. Which are as creepy as they are ineffective.

Have some fucking class, people. You don't see Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie talking to the press about how great their sex life is. Or isn't what with all those kids waking them up in the middle of the night.

When I did my post about sexual harassment, someone commented on FB about overhearing a bunch of female nurses at the pediatrician's office discussing Fifty Shades of Grey in front of a male nurse without noticing how uncomfortable it was making him. Putting aside the hostile work environment they were creating, they were discussing erotica where patients in the waiting room could hear them. At the pediatrician's office.

Now, I think it's great that we're finally talking about how women like erotic books. But there is a time and a place, people. And where children can hear you ain't it. Neither is your workplace.

Now, the internet. That is the place.

* Side note: I once worked with someone who did wait until she was married. Her upbringing in 1980s NYC was so sheltered that the only guys she met were friends of her brother, and that was in the presence of her entire family. After all those years of her family trying to keep her from having sex, it took her three nights to be comfortable enough with the idea to actually do the deed. 

Later on, the other person she'd told said to me that she didn't believe it and that the woman must've been lying. I can't imagine why anyone would make that up. Why else would she tell us if the entire thing hadn't freaked her out? They'd only been married a few months at that point and I think she told us just to make sure that we wouldn't think she was a total weirdo. 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Photo Album of Weirdness

In the interest of quick blogging, I decided to take a page from The Bloggess' book and just see what pictures on my cell phone you might want to see. 

This is what I call the Mullet Shirt. Business in the front.



And party in the back.

If I knew who would wear this, or where on God's green earth they would wear it to, I would be much wiser woman than I am.

Just think about this for a minute. Someone designed this, and a store buyer placed an order for it. You just know the third-world sweatshop seamstresses wanted to stop and ask each other what the fuck was going on with this thing, but they couldn't because they were paid by the shirt and couldn't spare the time.

I think I've already shared this picture of the gummy kebab I got at DisneyWorld, but I think we could all use a reminder of wonderful things in the world after  that ridiculous shirt.


I believe I've mentioned many times that sometimes when it rains a lot, our toilet fills with suds coming out of the washing machines in the laundry room a floor below us. Not directly below us, because that might come close to making sense, but I'm not going to try to understand the plumbing of this building. That way lies madness. 

So anyway, here's a picture of my toilet, filled with laundry suds.


What weird-ass pictures are hiding on your cell phone?

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Doctors Who We'll Need in The Post-Apocalypse

You know how in all these post-apocalyptic stories/movies/TV shows, it's always super important to have someone with medical training on your team? Like on The Walking Dead, how the veterinarian is performing surgery on people because who else is gonna do it. It's a thing. Take my word for it.

But as people are rebuilding society, you don't see much about your friendly neighborhood dentist or eye doctor. Not even on Revolution, where they're fifteen years post-worldwide-blackout, and have a society. There were dentists and eye doctors before electricity, and some of them have got to survive the whatever simply based on odds, yet they don't show up much. (Feel free to correct me in the comments before I start writing the story of a dentist in the zombie apocalypse.) We did see a library last week on Revolution, so maybe it's coming.  

Anyway, that's my roundabout way of saying that I got the teeth cleaning of a lifetime this week. I went to a new dentist, just around the corner (near the dollar store), and that man cleaned the hell out of my teeth. You know how at the end they use a flavored paste to polish your teeth? Not this guy. He used a sand-like substance - had a whole bit about laying on the beach and then some guy comes along and throws sand in your mouth. It's like he sandblasted my little teefers. There was a thing on one of my front teeth that my old dentist thought might grow up to be a cavity someday. It turns out that it was a stain that's just been hanging out on my front tooth for years. I keep looking in the mirror to marvel at how shiny my teeth are.

The reason for me getting off my ass and making a dentist appointment? Well, you know how sometimes your gums bleed when you brush your teeth and so the toothpaste comes out pink? Well last week, the toothpaste came out gray. I figured it was either a disintegrating filling or the blackness of my soul leaking out through my gums. It was neither. The dentist said it was probably just some tartar leaking out. And I have no new cavities, so I could've totally gotten away with blowing this off even longer. Except that my TMJ doctor threatened to tie me down to the chair and clean my teeth at my last appointment, so I guess I was pretty overdue. I suppose if the tartar starts coming out by itself, you really should see a dental professional.

Just something to remember for the post-apocalpse.

And speaking of eye-doctors, I saw my regular eye doctor a couple of months ago and told him about the crack on my retina. As he was examining me, he said it looked like I'd had a crack on my retina. I thought he was totally messing with me. By then it was healed (according to the specialist), and my eye doctor is that kind of guy. We go way back. We joke with each other. I send him hilarious postcards.

Here's the postcard I sent him from my honeymoon, that he has hanging in the office:
If you can't read it, it says, "As you know, the Eiffel Tower is very tall this time of year. It is also very cold and tourists who try to lick it get stuck."

So of course I assume he's messing with me when he said he could see something on my retina.

And then he took a picture and showed me:


And verily, there is totally a scar on my retina that you can absolutely see (the white jaggedy lines). 

Well now.

So anyway, in the post-apocalypse stuff you always see people in glasses and they look fine. It's never those god-awful glasses you get because you're not going to spend $600 on nice frames that you're only going to wear on your way to the bathroom to put in your contacts. But you're going to run out of disposable contacts in the post-apocalypse, you know. Hell, my glasses aren't even the right prescription anymore. But who cares unless society crumbles and I'm stuck wearing the damn things. I actually have nice frames, but when you're as nearsighted as I am, the lenses cost as much as a short vacation and I don't wear them because they weigh too much and hit me in just the wrong spot for my migraines, so I'm just going to have to take the chance.

Fortunately, the zombies will probably get me while I'm out trying to get more migraine medication before I run out of disposable contacts, so it's really a non-issue.



Monday, April 8, 2013

The Paper

Paper Weaving
Photo credit: FeatheredTar
When one of my cousins was in high school, she was given the assignment of writing a few paragraphs from the point of view of a piece of paper. If I remember correctly, she decided to have her piece of paper be a Dear John letter.

Anyway, here's my attempt at the same assignment.

The whole world spins as I'm snatched from the pile of paper. The horrible freedom and loneliness of missing the page on top of me is over and I imagine my sister below me is now feeling the same. 

I feel ink soaking into my fibers. Nice quality ink. Fountain pen. Fine tip, I think. What? You think I don't know these things because I'm just a piece of paper? You pick up quite a bit at the stationery store. We pages whisper amongst ourselves as the building sighs and settles into the empty night.

Ooh! Careful now. No need to cross anything out quite so violently. I can tear, you know. I know what she's thinking. Artistic temperament. Writing the great American novel. Scribbling it, more like.

Ow. Hey! I'm in a whole new shape and the world just flew by. so I'm guessing crumpled and thrown the the trash. Well, that was a disappointment. Not that I expected to have something of major historical importance written on me so I'd be preserved forever. But this? She didn't write a single thing on me worth saving? Sheesh.

It's some comfort to be back among some of my sisters, at least. Ah, the futility of existence. Especially when you're inanimate.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Entanglements

Tangle
Photo credit: artethgray
The way His Awesomeness and I became a couple went like this: we'd been friends for a while (after a first date that went less than well) and I invited him to spend Thanksgiving with my family. He declined because he had a policy of never going to stuff like that without being engaged. Because one of his cousins' ex-boyfriends kept cropping up in old pictures and it was awkward.

I said something like "Engaged? This is so sudden," and mentioned that we had been doing a lot of date-like things lately and maybe we should discuss that. 

It really is a lot easier to become entangled in someone's life than it is to become disentangled. 

Every year on our anniversary, HA and I watch our wedding video. And every year, I yell at the TV whenever my cousin's ex-boyfriend appears onscreen. Because he hurt her and should die a messy Game of Thrones-style death.

There's been at least one more split among our wedding guests, and I've added more jeers at the TV as appropriate. As the years pass, how many more people will I boo and hiss at on my anniversary? I may never see these people again, but there they are, on my wedding video, and in the pictures. I don't mind that they're there, since for me, hating people who have hurt people I love just deepens the love. 

Removing The Kid from our life seems to be a never-ending process, even six months down the road. Just when I think I've found every last trace of her in the apartment, the new bus company tries to drop her off (even though she's not on the bus and doesn't go to that school anymore). We got calls reminding us of doctor appointments for months - even ones I hadn't scheduled - but my number was still on file. 

We got her a subscription to a quarterly anime magazine, and HA called them to update her address after she left. Guess what just arrived in the mail?

In the same batch of mail, I got a beautiful thank you card for another cousin's wedding. We attended the weekend The Kid came to live with us. It was her first time meeting a lot of the extended family. The card includes lots of gorgeous photos from the day, including a shot of all the guests. With The Kid in the front row. Forever marring my cousin's wedding pictures.

I'm sure the newlyweds don't view it that way. They don't have any bad memories associated with The Kid and there are dozens of other people in that shot. But my eyes went straight to her. When I tried to find myself in the picture, I couldn't at first. The Kid has almost entirely blocked me from view. She's practically obliterated me. Which is pretty symbolic.

I'm coming back to myself, and I know these painful reminders will stop popping up eventually. There will come a time when I can look at animal print and not think about The Kid. And I don't even feel bad about that. I just wish I knew when I'll finally be untangled. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

More Dollar Store Accessories

Those shoes are for sale by the binload at the dollar store around the corner from my apartment. For realsies.  I first spotted them over a week ago, but I didn't get a chance to take a picture because first I was in a hurry, then there was a store employee arranging things outside the store and I felt weird. But I knew there was no hurry. They were not about to sell out. 

I didn't buy them for myself, not even for the purposes of blog photography because I already own enough shoes that I don't wear. And I will not be wearing rubber shoes. No matter how comfortable Mario Batali says they are.

I came damn near close to buying a giant flower made of purple zebra print fabric because where else but in a dollar store are you going to find such a thing? Then I realized that if I bought it, I'd be finding it in my house, and just...no. 

Also, I've developed a strong aversion to animal prints because The Kid loved animal print everything as an extension of her love of animals. Even though animal prints are a stand in for animal pelts, which are not generally worn by animal lovers. Add the skinny jean trend, and the child was trying to dress like a retired dealer in Reno.

ANYWAY,

I decided that if I'm going to keep doing the dollar store accessories thing, I'm going to have to stick to things I'd actually be caught dead wearing. And a giant flower made of purple zebra print fabric?  You'd have to pose that with my corpse. And even then, I might rise up from the dead to get that thing away from me.

The little purple hat, I've worn outdoors twice already. And then I put it with the rest of my accessories, so I may never wear it again. It's really hard for me to remember to accessorize before leaving the house. It's probably a workflow issue, though I feel like if I had a big makeup table with a mirror and chair, I'd never leave the house looking less than fabulous again.

I did find some awesome little plaid hair clips. Suitable for the kindergarten punk rock princess, I guess. If nothing else, they'll help me overcome the aversion to plaid I developed while attending Catholic grammar school. Our uniform plaid was gray, green, black, and yellow. It was so ugly that ancient Scottish warriors clad in nothing but their clan tartan and blue face paint returning from battle would've stopped and said, "Damn, girl, that is one ugly plaid."

Here's me in one clip of each color:

Then I decided to get a little artistic. 
Then I decided to arrange them like a flower, because that's a perfect look for a forty-one year old woman.


Thoughts? Suggestions? I might actually get up the nerve to take pictures inside a store that isn't so close to my house, so if you're in NYC, suggest your fave dollar store and maybe I can check it out.

Monday, April 1, 2013

The Magazine Rack

Back when Maura Magazine launched, I applauded the short length (4-5 articles per week) because my magazine rack runneth over with magazines I have yet to get to. 

Shortly after that, I took this picture of my magazine rack and made a list of what was in it. I even moved some of the magazines to the coffee table so I could make an extra effort to get through them. I made it halfway through an interesting cover article in New York magazine before that effort stalled.

So here's what I found, and what they're doing here:


  • Knit Picks catalog - 2 - For the uninitiated, they sell yarn, knitting books, etc.
  • Glamour - 2 - I subscribed to this since they have a personal essay contest and I write those, but it turns out that the contest is the only time they publish personal essays, so this really isn't a market I could break into outside of the contest. And since the contest has a different judge every year, researching the individual judge and flipping through a couple of issues at the library would've done just as well. So not worth the subscription considering what all the perfume ads do to my migraines.
  • New York magazine - 4 - This is a weekly, so it's hard to stay on top of it. I get it free as part of a professional association I belong to. Some of the features are fascinating, but fortunately, some of them are on subjects that I don't care about, so that speeds things up.
  • Brooklyn magazine - 1 - I have no idea why they keep sending me this. I don't pay for it. Maybe it's because I get New York?
  • Writer's Digest - 4 - I really get behind on these because so many of the articles have to do with honing my craft, which isn't exactly bathroom reading. I need to find a better way to fit these into my daily schedule.
  • Oprah - 2 - I refuse to call it "O." You can't make me. It's like all the self improvement books in one place. Funnily enough, I tend to skip over the book section since I've already read about most of the books they cover in Entertainment Weekly and New York. (Note: Entertainment Weekly never gets left to marinate in the magazine rack - we have our priorities.)
  • Bust - 3 - Feminist pop culture magazine. If you're not reading it, you should give it a try. Warning to those with kids in the house: They have a sex section towards the end, so you may not want to leave it where they can find it. Or you might, if they're at an age when they could stand to read a sex advice column that isn't in Cosmo.
  • Interweave Knits - 1 - Knitting magazine with patterns.
  • AT&T Insider - 1- Comes with our cell phone plan. Apparently, I felt it deserved more than a quick perusal before going straight into the recycling.
  • Fordham Alumni magazine - 2
  • Gift catalogs that would've been useful when shopping for Christmas - 5
  • Yoga at Home (a one-off from Yoga Journal). I keep meaning to read this, but my mild vertigo has been keeping me from restarting my home yoga practice, so reading a practical guide seem fairly pointless at the moment.
  • Yoga Journal - 5 - The oldest one dates from March 2010. Clearly, I've fallen off the yoga wagon.
  • The Writer - 1 - This is from August 2011. Same problem as Writer's Digest.
  • Oregon Humanities - 1 - This is a nice little magazine that is free on request. I requested it because they publish personal essays and I wanted to research them as a place to possibly send my work. When it became clear that they only publish writers who live in Oregon, I asked them to stop sending it because I felt bad about them wasting their money on me. 
  • Glutton for Fatshion - a zine started by some people who worked at Re/Dress, the plus-size resale store.
  • Utne Reader - 1 - This dates from 2008. It's sort of a Reader's Digest of alternative press. I used to subscribe and learned a lot. Now it's more information than I can deal with - such is life with a chronic illness.
  • Focus Health - 1 - a free magazine from some local hospital
Clearly, I have a magazine problem. I can't keep up with them simply because I have so many of them. Which magazines do you read?