Wednesday, December 31, 2008

(Just Like) Starting Over

As 2008 melts away, dissolving like this piece of dark chocolate on my tongue, I disappear for an hour or two into blogs written in the past 12 months, revisiting landmarks and rest stops and scenic overlooks. A lovely, difficult and triumphant year.

Should auld acquaintance be forgot? Some of them.

Tonight's destination, maybe a private party at a jazz club downtown, cheap dirty drinks in a cheap dirty tavern on South Broadway or me, Thai take-out and a Strangers with Candy marathon. Don’t know yet, but the quest for the perfect red dress ends today at the behemoth Colorado mother ship Macy’s, two grand levels and thousands of square feet stupid with potential. I was too fat most of 2007 to shop Macy’s or Nordstrom or any other wonderful boutique shop. But five sweaty hours a week since April in the gym, the majority spent building and reshaping my quads and ass in spinning class, and I could now crack a man’s head like a peanut between my thighs. Thirty pounds gone with 40 more to follow takes me half way there, livin’ on a prayer. Fell off the snack cart a couple times, but stayed the course.

Said goodbye to a Dad and a good deal of biologically tied family, but re-emerged to meet authentic me and take great gulps of the taste and smell of everyday joy.

After too much time spent doubting my beauty, I learned to flirt, getting better after a few rocky starts.

Then there was the guitar player, whose swagger and stubble, talent and testosterone had me enthralled.

I dove in the deep end of boys and men and crazy, no-more-holds-barred sex. Four men wandered into my bed, including an actor, a romantic and fireman fantasy. There was one who peeled back some layers, made my hands shake. I think I fell a little, didn’t realize I had it in me. And I didn’t sleep with him.

Lost a friend full of grace and ballsy attitude. And watched true love transcend closed eyes.

Note to self in ’09, really need to change that profile picture.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

You say you want a resolution

I’m not one for resolutions. I make goals all the months of the year. Before the ball drops next week, however, I'm revisiting certain behaviors.

I must limit dirty birds. It will pain me to imbibe of my salty, briny friend only periodically, but weight loss has hit a plateau (good news, I’ve maintained my "high" weight over the holidays, and fuck if three pounds of that isn't currently menstrual cycle – MC – load). I also tend to get overly sentimental, cheeky…well, horny when the gears are Grey Goose slippery. And the internet is bad fun when you’re slippery, as some e-mail and chat will attest.

Red wine is good for you, yes?

I will embrace more adventure in ’09. Leave my phone number on the credit slip for the waiter I’ve flirted with over breakfast, the twenty-something with the tattoos, two of five he’s shown me so far…wait, check. Fulfilled that resolution yesterday morning. Rub a Buddha belly or some God beads that a jingle results. Although I recently pledged to pursue older gents, what a tonic to recent tumultuous times.

I will travel farther than Denver in '09. Anyone for Bermuda? I’m not kidding. See resolution above, the one about more adventure.

I will get off my comfortable safe ass in ’09. When the spirits shine on you, bring old friends into your current world that own, say, a publishing company, who offer to met and, perhaps, talk about optioning your blog into a book or, maybe, a screenplay listen to them.

I’ll love me even more in ’09. Despite best efforts, I’m still a fat girl. I’m in my 40’s, not my 20’s. Sometime sport a pimple or ruddy patch. Yet in any room, at any time (red-faced and panting at the gym, in line at the grocer, out on the town and surrounded by perky and tight) I’m attractive, sexy and the woman you want to know because I believe I am.

I’ll be a DOUBLE-U-O-M-A-N, say it again, in ’09. The mysterious distance between a man and woman* doesn’t have to be argumentative and trying. I’m strong-willed, but caring and loving. I have walls, but am worth the climb.

I'll be more happy than sad in '09. Hells yeah.

*I stole that from Bono, credit where due

Friday, December 26, 2008

I Need A Man

Got a smile and hello in the seafood department today. From a fireman, natch. They’re drawn to me like, well, firemen to flame. He was older though, perhaps by a decade, but the rugged older, the still toned and sprinkle of gray on a full head of hair older.

He had great eyes.

I think I’m going for the older, established gents for a bit. Ones who’ve built careers with some prestige, still enjoy their work but have become distracted by the want for more life, the good red wine. Those who are just learning to play guitar or who write and can escape for weekends and pay for nice dinners out at little spots found by accident that soon become favorites and who dance close to honky-tonk music at a dirty hole in the wall that serves PBR in the can and who’s attentive in bed and wears a suit jacket sometimes. And who is confident enough about life and self not to be intimated by an equally established, creative, searching and craving, independent-to-a-fault (and who finds that really sexy) woman.

I want a man like me.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Happy Christmas (War Is Over)

I have every hope 2009 will be a good year. I believe and feel it. Optimism empowers. I’m excited the worlds view of us may change, that new leadership may begin to correct past failures, build a stronger foundation and protect that which inspires us. Forge paths unheard of, unseen and create more self- awareness and motivation. Find a clearer view of goals, however far in the distance, and fight fear disguised as something else. Get up off our fat asses and take care of our bodies, feed the soul. Simply take care of each other. Simply figure out how to love.

Ironic, after months of building core strength, my back erupted in a crescendo of spasms last night. I pulled it, damaged it again sitting on the floor, wrapping Christmas presents the night before. I had only one Aleve tablet rattling in a rarely used bottle, which is funny since they usually go two-by-two. I sobbed from the pain and vodka-enhanced sadness. I have so much work still to do.

I've been labeled “selfish and self-centered” by a man who also said he loves me a little. And via e-mail, which just makes cruelty easier to deliver. I never thought of myself as either; perhaps I'm both. Something tells me to protect and preserve at all costs. When did I get so scared? How do I not be? Maybe feeling, knowing that hands might catch you as you fall is a good place to start.

“Estranged” is a funny word.

es⋅trange [i-streynj]
1. to turn away in feeling or affection; make unfriendly or hostile; alienate the affections of
2. to remove to or keep at a distance
3. to divert from the original use or possessor

I have every hope 2009 will be a good year. I believe and feel it.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Christmas Rapping

Just awoke from a 2 hour nap, the best kind, in bed and under the covers, fully clothed and with ribbons of sun burning through the blinds on a cold Colorado day. My toenails are the color of red in a candy cane, so perfectly shiny and glossy objects reflect in them. I would say I treated myself to a mani-pedi after a morning workout and soy latte but I treat myself often. And well. Now.

Tonight I’ll sit by a sparkling tree, adorned with sentimental ornaments collected over the years and wrap the few presents I've purchased while enjoying a glass of Bridlewood Shiraz, the surprisingly plum-ey and warm red suggested by the FLA niece. Monday is lunch with the CO niece.

Angels those two. There's no other word. Young women with old, beautiful souls, they picked me up and kept me close through the madness and isolation, when no one else with similiar DNA did. I’d like to think some of that compassion was learned from an Aunt.

No mad, bustling trips to the mall this weekend, no full-throttle family drama and servings of familiar passive aggression next week. Just a simple, peaceful, centered and authentic few days. This year I opened the gift to really seeing, then really believing, that I’m not damaged or marginal and absolutely worthy of joy and respect, unconditionally and with no-strings attached. Next year more love will be under my tree, in a big, big box wrapped in a bow. I have a stocking full now.

New Year’s Eve, however, I’m going crazy. The activities one partakes in while passing from one year to the next shapes the following twelve months. I hope I’m in bed, heels still on, most of the lip gloss off and happily dizzily from champagne.

Wide awake in anticipation.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Ebenezer Scrooge was wrong

Who knew I was a power consumer. Years of comparison shopping, living within doable means and coupon clipping aside, I could have been, should have been living it up, embracing the Veruca Salt “I want it all and I want it now” lifestyle.

The bills are due, and I’m paying. Regardless.

I drive a Honda Accord, before that a Civic. Sturdy, middle-class, soccer Mom cars (regardless of cooling up my ride with nearly black-tinted windows, it’s not a sexy machine). I wanted a Mustang, a convertible Mustang. Not cherry red, that’s expected and desperate, maybe an emerald green. But with common-sense booming in my ears, I opted out and headed to the sensible shoes side of the showroom. With this mornings approved bailout of U.S. automakers, Ford got its hands in my pants after all.

My cozy, loft-like town house I’ve held in deed with Wells Fargo for eight years. Like me, it’s cute, warm and accomodating, if lacking some basics - no garage, no guest room. Had I not eschewed the boutique neighborhood bungalow or suburban McMansion I’d feel better taking it from behind from the banks.

Dear Santa,
All I want for Christmas is my bailout plan. And a naked man with girth and cardio stamina.
Love,
Jodie

Monday, December 15, 2008

And how was your weekend?

I think I broke up with someone I’m not dating.

Friday night, after several months of casual get-togethers and mostly hooking up, I got hung up on. I think. His cell phone drops calls often and at the most inconvenient (and perhaps convenient) moments. That the line turned to a hum after I said something akin to not calling anymore is a good indicator my sex life has abruptly halted and I shouldn’t expect a holiday card.

He said I kept flip-flopping, changing my mind about him. I think when I told him truthfully what I wanted, and what I didn’t, he tried to became that in the moment, only to feel taken advantage of later. Admittedly so, I can be a tough nut to crack when it comes to the relating part of relationships, and we agreed to be casual with few strings. Then his words tried to convince me I was lacking because of what I don't want, at least right now. I choose to eat from the appetizer menu, small tastes and new flavors. I’m not ready to order. He wants a dinner portion and "to go" box.

***

Technology has dumbed down a generation. At the dry cleaner Saturday morning the clerk brought out my white trench coat, one that had endured a rough autumn and layers of ground in dirt. I squealed in delight, “Oh! It’s pristine!” The girl behind the counter stared at me blankly, I stared back. “Um…” I finally offered, “It’s really clean.” She didn’t even LOL.

***

Playback Theater West is an improv “dramedy” troupe out of Boulder and one of the best I’ve seen. Improvisational comedy seriously tickles me; sharp and witty and intelligent, I’m in awe of actors who can evoke and entertain in a moments notice. At a sold-out show Saturday night, the cast literally threw themselves, physically and whole body, into performance art. They build scenes from shared audience stories, playing back and animating words with humor and slapstick and pathos and warmth.

I considered sharing my story of Christmas Day a long time ago when Santa returned to take our toys away. After fighting for hours, like kids do, Mom and Dad demanded we bring all the holiday booty - clothes, candies, GI Joe with the Kung Fu grip - to the foyer. We were bad children and Santa wanted his crap back. The next morning, everything was gone, down to the tiniest crumb and Barbie fuck-me pump. A week of sadness and disingenuous sucking up passed. That Sunday, arriving home from church, we found our goodies had re-appeared. I don’t know if the lesson was one of love thy sibling or you must earn affection, even from Santa.

Wish I’d been brave enough to share how alone I felt in a small theater, filled to capacity, surrounded by patrons paired two-by-two, or three or four. No one to drive home with.

Boulder is an odd city, its population contrasted-and-compared by $55 Abercrombie & Fitch plain white tees and thrift shop wear, the Hummers and the hippies. I realized in the ladies at intermission, I don’t fit so much anymore. I went to college in Boulder, lived on and off there for years. Still find myself enthralled by the surprise beauty of the foothills. But now I’m Denver. I pluck my eyebrows and own no hand knit caps. Picture me in Max Studio short tunic dress, black cropped tights and pointy flats washing palms at a bathroom sink next to the new Mom, baby tied to her chest in a pink scarf, Timberlines and pants too tight in the crotch, loudly and soulfully humming “Silent Night” and you’ll get the juxtaposition.

***

I adore bath products, perhaps because one uses them while warm and naked. A hot soak, especially one that lingers on the weekends, is ritual. Sunday afternoon I lined up bottles and potions and razors for all patches on the tub ledge, saved a spot for a class of Chardonnay. The philosophy Candy Cane salt scrub smells like heavenly peppermint, invigorating to skin and senses and amazing on feet and outer thighs. However after scrubbing under otherwise sensitive arms, I maintained a curiously strong, all-over minty sting for an hour.

I brought the latest issue of O Magazine into the tub, the one with Oprah heralding weight troubles on the glossy cover. The article blamed and blamed, calling upon her diagnosis of hypothyroidism (the “Get Out of Fat Free” card) and side effect of meds on her body and (mostly) head. The pages of “O” are an endless stream of platitudes and gratitudes, extolling the joys of the “authentic” self, a concept lost in the airbrushing of some of the now 200 pounds from her frame. And much like Who Moved my Cheese it’s stuff you already know; do unto others, let a smile be your umbrella and always put the seat down. Oprah just sells it with cashmere slippers.

***

And how was your weekend?

Friday, December 12, 2008

The Notorious

Bettie Page passed away yesterday.

Bettie was a 1950’s pin-up girl and icon to the rockabilly community, all the cats and kittens. To me, she was everything a gal was supposed to be. Larger than life (yet standing just 5’5), curvy but with a sharp-edged hourglass figure; I envied how the crease of her ribs cut into a deceptively tiny waist. She was creamy white with jet black hair, heavy bangs cut above eyebrows and curled tight like a cigar; a look I could never pull off, not with my round face. She wore red lipstick and black platform pumps.

Along with glamour photography, she did fetish, bondage and nude, some of it shocking even now, back in the days of petticoats and good girls keeping it under wraps until marriage. She showed it all, right down to full-on, curly doodle; funny how a woman in her natural state looks so unnatural now.

Out of her extensive portfolio, her image captured in black-and-white short movies, for all the bikinis and the nakedness, Bettie never looked sexier than she did in a candid I found, red lips smiling, bra peeking from underneath a red-and-white polka dotted blouse blown by unseen wind, movement I imagine coming off a lake or boat. It mirrors perfectly in Kodachrome how I see (and want to see) myself as a woman; alluring and beautiful and colorful and lovely and warm.

Bettie had a bit of trouble in the head, spent time “away” and had a violent streak. She went after not one, but two people who'd done her wrong, wielding a butter knife as a weapon. True kitten with a whip.

She eventually ran from debauchery, after a failed marriage sent her by happenstance into a church and into God. And although she denounced a good deal of her past work, said she had regrets, she didn’t regret the money. She did, however, refuse to be photographed, saying she wanted fans to remember her as she was then, full of life. I will.

Rest in peace, Bettie.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Wherever I Lay My Hat

Is it bad for your female “area” to sit in bed with an ever-growing-warmer laptop on crooked knees?

Because, damn y’all, my loins are sweating.

I need room to write. A space to call my own, not shared with research and online tools and quippy marketing copy like, “Think you can’t afford IT? Think again.” I have precious little space, the mid-section of my compact, loft-like-three-story laid out in a strategic grid of home office, living area and galley kitchen (“dining area" is the steamer trunk in front of the couch, which also sometimes serves as hunched over writing space).

If I removed the faux-leather cigar chair in the top level master, I’d open a corner where, perhaps, I could place a thrift store vanity or small desk. But like a TV in the bedroom, is that toying with the love and lust life?

The basement is strictly off limits. Finished or un-, I can’t beckon the creative in below ground space, a bit too Unabomber crafting his manifesto. The basement holds laundry, dusty work out equipment (never used) and crap that doesn’t fit in livable space. My gift-wrapping room if you will.

Excuses, excuses, right? Diablo Cody wrote the screen play to Juno sitting in a Starbucks in a Target (talk about the genius emerging from vanilla corporate frosting). I can do this anywhere. Even at 6:14 a.m. in a short pink nightie and under the covers.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The alter super-ego

Time for a new profile picture. The thumbnail representation of persona, who I want you to believe I am and using only the best angles and lighting. What’s my motivation? Do I go tits again (self love to those who’ve asked to see more), or Tina-Fey-glasses-take-me-serious-as-an-essayist pose? Perhaps Shirley Manson-Garabagesque.

I’m leaning towards risqué. Between firemen, dick chat and erotic dreams, I’m bringing frisky back (with thanks to the pokey thyroid meds I railed so hard against). But there's that fine line between saucy and salacious. For a minute-and-half I’d posted a photo in a blog reflecting results of much hard work, the half-point on the “I Love Me More” health and fitness tour. It’s my favorite new picture; instead of sloping shoulders disappearing into fleshy arms, it shows squared, defined edges holding up a beautiful clavicle. Much cleavage, perky where needed and toned in the thighs. I have a waist, hips. But since I took the picture myself, reflected back in a mirror and wearing a vintage-looking black slip, it’s a bit Craigslist and I quickly pulled it.

Didn’t think it through to comments typed with one hand.

I’m sexy. It’s as odd a concept as suddenly sprouting a third thumb or waking up a foot taller. I have a way to go yet, and more work to do, but love and stroke my body at every stage, at every weight and as flab moves to lean. I finally get it. That I shop in the ladies department at Macy’s after a decade confined to Lane Bryant is perhaps the greatest thrill of all.

I have a long-time friend, a photographer. At 27, my heart shattered by rejection, he and I did a photo shoot together. Never comfortable in pictures up to that point, I needed to find me after not being seen by a man I thought I'd fallen in love with. It took a good many mimosas to calm strong shaking but I did it. I still recall dreading the first look through an eye scope at tiny squares filled with my image. I remember saying out loud, "These aren't bad. I look…good.” I cherish those photos now. I see a young girl in B&W and the first pecks to crack a thick shell of insecurity built on childhood taunts and never feeling pretty. I’m proud of her. It may be time to capture her again.

That’s not my face now.

While my pussy snores

My feral cat snores, sweetly moans and groans in deep sleep. She's at the foot of the bed doing it now. I'd post a video but I'm not wearing panties and am concerned the lens angle may be wide.

Odd the things you'll do to bring slumber in sleepless times, the self-made rituals. Chamomile tea, extra-snuggly blanket, vodka with an Ativan chaser. My latest insomnia cure is curling up sans silkies, commando, kitty to the wind. I feel free, less encumbered, no wedgie riding up into ridges.

Bonus, the dirty dream. The tried and tested theory stands – with (even partially, or southernly) nude sleep comes dreams of the saucy variety. Last night I had a moist head trip about a long-time male friend, one I'm due to have a drink with this week or next. In reality we've flirted at best, nocturnally we’re kissing madly, me in a gray satin slip and he fully dressed. Supine and melting into a plush sofa, on my back with knees up, him on top and inching downward. Two friends in the room watching. An old acquaintance washing dishes, trying not to look and best girlfriend, judging without words. I reluctantly, but slowly and gently, push him away.

We're alone, standing feet apart outside of the house. He’s still clothed, I’m still not. He tells me he likes the pleasure. I tell him, "But I don't want to be the show."

I don't get it either.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Hold your water, Sybil

Does the phrase “pee like a racehorse” refer to volume or frequency? If the latter, I’m a thoroughbred.

An afternoon trip to the mall begins with a quick (much needed) stop in the Macy’s ladies lounge. A pass through dresses, quick Sephora shelf-browse, zip to L’Occitane and stop at Papyrus later, and I have to pee. Again. Not entirely certain if it's a required void or precautionary, pre-drive home event.

I piddle like a champ, my motto is “piss clear.” Cloudy lemonade isn’t sweet, one should strive for water with a squirt of lemon. According to Dr. Oz, Oprah’s medical sycophant but downright sexy in those powder blue scrubs (I think he goes commando), you should be able to read through it. I know the frequent tinkle isn’t a worry medically; during my annual well-woman, lube and tube exam a week ago, the physician’s assistant was giddy over the quality of my juice. If she could, I’m guessing she’d have bottled some for display in the waiting room.

No, I’ve become a girl who pees. Middle of the night, one more for the road. Just thinking long and hard enough about it and I'm a go. Luckily the kegel’s are holding so a sneeze doesn’t bring a trickle.

Vodka is clear. Perhaps I’m diluting a wee bit.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Fat like me

I got the call yesterday fat ladies await with salami-bated breath.

“We got the results of your blood work. You have hypothyroidism.”

Son of a bitch.

Since that word began to buzz, plumpies have played the thyroid card, the slow metabolism. Even Oprah claimed it. I am curious if kick starting the juices stalled in a gland in my neck will show on the scale and naked in the mirror. Bonus if treatment helps fight new fatigue and joint pain - thought I’d simply inherited crunchy knees from my Dad’s side. I’m miffed the condition has little to do with behavior I could change; it’s the first of the internal organs to wear out (my doc, however, theorizes a lingering and nasty viral infection last year may have played a part). It also means taking a tiny and sugary pill every day for the rest of my life.

Fuck.

I’m not a fan of medicating (with the exception of Pinot Noir and Grey Goose). A couple of Bayer is all I need on the roughest of days. A year ago I bid goodbye to the pill after 20 years of start-on-Thursday-over-by-Sunday regularity. I just don’t believe in pharmaceutically changing body chemistry long-term anymore.

Dammitdammitdammit.

On the plus side, I passed the “just checking” Chlamydia test with flying colors.

The diagnosis came the same week I took in a Sunday matinee of “Fat Pig”. This off-Broadway-to-Boulder stage play chronicles a short-lived and unlikely romance between an attractive guy with an upscale career and an amply endowed, Rubenesque…screw it, fat chick.

The female lead Helen, the fat pig in “Fat Pig”, is barely zaftig. She wears heels for Christ sake and would shop the low-end sizes at Lane Bryant. The more compelling visual would have been a can’t-hide-it-I-can’t-deny-it obese actress in the role. Conversation surrounding Helen always focused on size first, the apology for it, the acceptance of it. She had a jolly laugh and stuffed down hot dogs during an emotional encounter.

The male lead Tom, not that hot or hard. Smoldering in head shots, he acted it goofy and immature; in a shirtless beach scene, there’s definite moob. Supporting players were caricatures of the meanest kids on the playground. Would you seriously, even in the most private or judging moment, tell your best buddy he’s dating a “sow”? Brave Helen is finally torn down by Tom’s insecurities, exposing surprise vulnerability and admitting her shame, telling him she’ll change, really change, for him. If the cost of his love is surgery or stapling, she’s all in.

Bullshit.

Having spent my formative dating years somewhere on the fat scale, I wasn’t worthy of the boys I wanted. They never looked. I never dated. When hormones bud and you’re not the girl the boys want to spend seven minutes in heaven with, sexuality ceases to exist. As an adult finally comfortable in my skin and vagina, in some sort of odd reverse discrimination, I like fit guys, men aware of appearance. It’s not looks, but caring enough about one's self to take care of oneself. To not be fat, one must eat less and exercise more. To be healthy, one must eat properly and exercise. Under the covers on a snowy morning is a better spot than out running a still slippery sidewalk, frosty breath escaping. A cocktail and “Friends” rerun often more appealing than burning quads on a spinning bike. I’d prefer salt and vinegar kettle chips over a handful of raw almonds every time. It’s choices, being better. Being all.

And now I have an honest to goodness doctor’s note.

Crap.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Shake your money maker

Ladies, get it through your overly teased heads, sex for cash is not a career. Porn star, stripper or call girl, it’s not feminist leaning or screenplay worthy. There's no romance, no handsome, salt-and-pepper gray millionaire coming to climb the fire escape. Your contribution is the erection and a happy ending.

As a woman abetting equality, you piss me off. And this from a woman who loves naked time.

Ex-call girl Ashley Dupré, the one who ball busted Eliot Spitzer, has a spread (pun intended) in People Magazine. Like many in the industry (others always say they just love sex; if hedonism begat profession, there'd be a lot more watching TV in underpants positions available), she claims and blames a troubled past for her now-must-atone-for-it-folly. Yet she reasons, “This wasn't any different than going on a date with someone you barely knew and hooking up with them. The only difference is I can pay my rent."

I date. I hook up. I can pay my mortgage. I also have a career built on ambition and self-reliance and “The Ramen Noodle Years” when money earned from pithy and pissy jobs went to school and learning more and taking risks and making mistakes and trying again and embracing being a woman in a mans world.

And I kept my tits in my blouse the entire time.

It’s maddening how sexualized girls are today. We thought the classmate who wore a top hinting at belly button risqué, never contemplated kissing a girl for the attention. “Porky’s” was downright pornographic. My nieces came of age in a generation that considered oral and anal the safe kind of sex.

The sex worker has become mainstream, just another booth at career day. Women, especially young women, must make wise choices. We can't have it all, not all at the same time, but can take smart steps to ensure long tastes from the full buffet throughout a lifetime. In my 20’s, I had neither the ass nor the time to display it on stage. The clock was ticking and I had to run to keep pace with the boys. In heels yet. I know a handful of women who used to strip, now stuck in per hour jobs in menial professions. None used that money to get through college. They got boobs.

Dupré calls herself a “survivor”; no, survivors are those with healthy and empowering lives, regardless of and because of the journey. Fucking is easy.

She concludes her People interview saying she will, “No! Never again!!” sell her body. Counting the months until the Playboy spread and bologna-throwing Howard Stern appearance.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The ties that bind

The best way to cut my cats nails is to cover her head with a dishtowel. Hiding from the reality of it, taking cover let’s her block out the fear and tension. The anticipated pain.

“I will begin by saying I'm truly sorry for your loss”I may have dreamt the last 11 months and seven days.

“This letter is definitely not designed to bash anyone”
It’s not talked about anymore, just is. But like lilies in church at Easter, it reappears at holidays.

“He is still grieving. I'm not sure about the rest of you”I handled solitary well, learned from it. Sobs can come from deep in the belly and half a bottle of Stoli neat removes all guard. A stranger can find his way to your door in the middle of the night after I-can't-be-alone-anymore-make-me-feel-better internet chat. I never did figure out where the shallow red threads etched in a forearm came from. Cat scratches. Yeah.

“You have tried to punish us for having a family and each other”Yes, he does look good, he’s doing really well since the separation. Do you see I’m 30 pounds smaller? Trying a stuffing recipe found on Food Network. Did she not hear me say, “I need you to be my Mom too?” Did none of it happen? The baby is coming any day now. Do you see I can’t smile? I’m scared if I expose teeth a fist will swiftly push them down my throat. Again.

“I'd appreciate if I weren't brought in this family feud”
No guns or line in sand drawn. Not sure what happened, really. Woke up one morning without anymore. Simple as that, my Dad was gone and soon so was most everyone else. One-little-two-little-three-little-Indians.

“It's amazing how you have not even acknowledged our suffering”
Is there a statue of limitations on isolating, devaluing and shattering family? A reinstatement ceremony? I'm never going to be invited back, am I.

“Continue the disappointment”
Okay. I probably will. But less with myself.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Boy, crazy

Crazy what happens when you put something out in the universe.

The morning was filthy with firemen.

“Yeah, truck!” I exclaim, happily clapping like a little girl at the site of Fire Engine 6 in the gym parking lot. Thing about real-deal gym goers, most aren’t there for anything more than the workout. Staring too much or too long is frowned upon. Forget John Travolta and Jamie Lee Curtis circa Perfect, the feeling at my gym is mutual sweaty respect. I scan my card at the front desk and complete a quick, covert once over, casual and without a break in step to the cardio room in the back - perfectly incognito.

Just as colorful plumage and bubble gum pink baboon bottoms draw a mate in the wild, the firemen are easy to spot in navy tees, “Westminster Fire” emblazed on the back in big white letters. Long shorts, big radios. “Hmmm…I could always just do the elliptical out here,” I offer myself, “Be bold and ballsy and rotate in at the weight stations,” No, not what I came for. I’m here to work too. Head back to the step class, chock full of women. Sigh.

Then, magic happens. The heat to the group fitness room had been turned off in the night, resulting in arctic breezes and cold hard woods. To warm and circulate air, the instructor leaves the usually full coverage doors open wide. I'm in full door frame when, about 10 minutes in, one wanders from the pack. The navy tee I’d spotted earlier on a treadmill. I glance out for a moment, glowy and still sexy-sweaty (before the blotchy pink flushing and extreme pit sweat). He looks straight at me, so I smile. And he smiles back.

“Yeah, me!” I exclaim.

About 50 minutes of hard cardio and sopping up in the locker room later, I did a quick once-around-the-gym, but he was gone.

Morning errands after had me driving by the grocery, perfect since I was in need of spinach, distilled water, Cherry Chapstick. Maneuvering past the bakery, bringing up the rear, a familiar navy tee paired with yellow puffy, flame-retardant pants passes. He’s older, the iconic image you’d see in an Easter Seals ad or on a cable-network drama. Old school, he sports a gray handlebar mustache and olive skin that looks like it smells of ash. Since they rarely travel solo, a loop back to produce for butter lettuce reveals the younger, dark haired and freshly scrubbed of the pair. Ran into him buggy first, close enough to hear, “Yes, cantaloupe. We need a lot of cantaloupe.” He returned the smile I gave him too. They’re friendly like that, the firemen.

Cantaloupe, FYI, is the sexiest of the melon family, its sweet, mellow taste similar to another found when exploring a woman. You know.

Why didn’t I say something pithy yet safe? “Hey, I just saw a bunch of you at my gym!” Cute, quick and explains the lack of makeup and heels. Plus calling out my fitness quest alongside a cart of crunchy beta carotene says healthy as well as luscious and juicy. But no. I merely admire.

I’m not a fire stalker. Really. My affinity and affection for all men (well, those men who turn on my mind as much as anything else) is well documented, regardless the profession or situation. Yet just as some gentlemen prefer blondes, short stature, fake tits or old-man scrotum shade of tan, I go for dark, tall, broad shoulders, fair skin and more often than not holding an axe of some sort. Guitar players and firemen (as well as Mr. Cusack, any era) are my "thing"; they need do little more than show up and I’m half way to theirs. There are risks; the guitar player prefers the company of pros and porn stars. In fairness he told me and I didn’t listen, and I dodged a probable Chlamydia bullet. But I found who he was overrode what he was. Pity he wants nothing of me.

There was a time early in my corporate career where men in suits did it, something in those molded shoulder pads no doubt.

Hockey players, rugged, unshaved and often missing teeth. I can bandage that up, rub that out, make it all better. Bookworms and poets, sensitive listeners who rub your feet. Men who can cook.

Perhaps the better blog is what doesn’t do it.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

All tied up in a pretty package

Waking early for the gym on a weekend spells commitment. Or lack of anything better to do. Or penance due a previous night of too much salt, vodka and feet in the air. I made the 9:00 a.m. step class. As “arrest” is to “conviction”, “made” is to "attempted." A sub was subbing, lovely girl but whose last-second queuing has me ass backward more moves than not. No worries, had my Nano, my Bono and a room full of cardio equipment. And the firemen.

Westminster Fire and Rescue. Fire Station 6. They travel in packs, firemen (plural). Often find them as a bunch in the grocery and, surprisingly and happily, my gym on a Saturday morning.

One caught my eye and kept it. Tall, broad shouldered and with a bit of a duck ass, walking on the balls of his feet, projecting posterior upward as if toward God; you see this roll often in women wearing too high of heels. Dark hair and amiable, he helps at the smoothie bar with delivery and mounting (dirty) of a foamy whipping contraption. I stare wherever he roams, keeping pace on the elliptical, hard interval runs slowing to smooth, hard heel digs (best for fat burning). I stalk him from treadmill to weights and stretching. Oh stretching. God, he’s nearly as bendy as me. As quickly as I’d found him, he was gone.

Funny, the firemen drive the big rig to the gym, the squirt and hose, full-on urban assault vehicle of a truck. They can’t carpool? I watched them drive away. Slowly.

The ladies like fireman, more so than policemen (especially motorcycle traffic cops who think a speed gun an extension of a too-small appendage.) Firemen are regular Joe’s who drink beer, collect cans and presents for kids at Christmas. Take in abandoned babies. The fantasy isn’t a rescue by Prince Charming but Prince change-a-flat-shovel-snow-protect-and-smother-in-tight-abs.

My fondness for fireman, although somewhat fueled by the savior aspect, may have more to do with the perfect penis. Or rather the most perfect seen so far in real life (and my hand) which came attached to a fireman. Balanced in scope and size, pink and all over smooth like a bald shiatsu, plump, cylindrical and resting happily eager against defined thighs and belly. A palm full of happy stones, dual sacks of Silly Putty ready to be spread on the Sunday comics and pull up “Peanuts.” I’ve not come across such a thing of beauty since. Truth told, men, your junk is funny. It looks damn funny. Some shriveled and wrinkly as if soaked too long in dirty hot dog water, some bumpy and left leaning. Swear I've had one with a square knot in the end. Don’t get me started on foreskin.

The perfect penis is like the best peach you find all summer, allusive, sweet and often a thing of memories. Nothing compares before or after. And yes, use plays a part; it's not the pen, it's the penmanship and one must cross all the t's and dot all the i's.

A former aerobics instructor, stay-at-home-Mom and friend bakes snowy-sugared cookies and chewy squares to deliver to the firemen at a local station during Christmas. She takes her son, who gazes in awe. Wonder if I could borrow him? I gaze in awe too, for an altogether different chewy reason.

Could always start a small grease fire. Too forward to do so wearing a marabou trimmed short nightie and kitten heel slippers?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Just Squeeze Me

Writing eludes me of late. I’ve bemoaned how the monetary career grows while the fantasy of binding thoughts in published form, imagining the screenplay and who’d play me suffers. Already picked the local musicians I’ll help launch to national prominence by including in a bar scene and on the soundtrack. And yes, serving cocktails, scones and coffee at the signing.

To freshly-squeeze creative juices and pull myself out of pajamas and away from the home office, I've been seeking out local writing groups and workshops (bonus should either include a poetic, tortured soul with dark hair and eyes who’ll read to me in bed). Found two classes offered by the continuing education arm of my alma mater, dear old CU, which sparked a creative plug:

“Life Writing” works with the concept that truth is stranger (and often more interesting) than fiction.

Truth is also raw, naked and a little scary. In “Creative Nonfiction”:

Do you have an idea for a nonfiction story? Perhaps you are looking for other writers to work with who can provide useful criticism.

“Useful criticism." There’s an oxymoron, like “jumbo shrimp” or “boy friend."

Yesterday two oversized course catalogs, one Winter, one Spring arrived. Should I find it karmic or ironic the only other mail delivered that day was a glossy catalog of bargain books? The abandoned remains of life’s work that don’t sell a full first print, hopes and dreams marked down to $3.95 hardcover?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes

You know how during a televised awards ceremony like the Oscars or the MTV Video Music Awards, camera men often cut to an obvious emotional target? The ex-significant other or losing nominee or starlet caught with privates out, the butt of the joke. Never saw so many brown faces on CNN as I did last night.

In Barack Obama, my power of cognizant recognition doesn’t immediately go to black (is that properly PC? I mean, I’m not white but more a peachy-pink, but “African American” or “person of color” really sounds like we’re trying to hard. Like calling a fat girl "rubenesque" or a garbageman a "refuse engineer" – simple words are good words, people). Instead, I see someone like me, more similiar if not the same. About my age, just a few years older, non-traditional family of mixed faces, shades ranging from porcelain to mocha, who experimented with drugs as a youth and admitted it, college educated, self-made and interested in everything. Feel that I know him, part of my circle. That we present a leader to the world who looks and speaks differently than any in our history is exciting. Maybe the French will like us.

I look forward to the day breasts and a uterus lead the country.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Land of the free

Forget historical significance, change and the political process, Election Day is all about the freebies. And a good day for the hungry, homeless and horny.

Crack open crusty eyes with a cuppa Starbucks Joe and a Krispy Kreme. Settle a Mad Dog hanger or sooth a bleeding ulcer with a creamy, milky scoop from Ben&Jerry’s. Tummy still rumblin, get a Chick-fil-A sandwich or free apple pie with that Big Mac purchased with coins. Downtown, curl up in cardboard at some street meters; parking is free today.

Long lines and curtained booths get you hot? Get yer grip around an adult toy courtesy of Babeland retail stores:
"The rewards are no-so-subtle reminders of this year’s campaign rhetoric. For men, it’s the 'Maverick,' a 'sleeve' for self-pleasuring. According to a press release, 'He’s always there to lend a hand, he works for every man and he bucks the status quo.' Women can choose the 'Silver Bullet' mini-vibrator, 'a magical solution to difficult problems' and 'a great stress-reliever during these troubled economic times!'"
After all, voting feels so good.

Last, if you’re rethinking that “VPILF” inked ode to Sarah Palin, New Look Laser Tattoo Removal in Dallas will burn it off proper.

I'm proud, and full, to be an American.

Go vote, bitches!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

I Eat Dinner (When the Hunger's Gone)

Last night I scratched bottom. No, I dove in the deep end, hit concrete and jack hammered to near the earth’s core. I find comfort where comfort is lacking in food. It was my M.O. as a chubby kid and fat teen, now it’s a one-off thing, rarely occurring. When it does I can pinpoint the source. I know the hole that needs filled.

After an otherwise lovely dinner out with a friend, the sushi and spring rolls and tiny mochi balls left me empty and wanting more. The two dirty vodka martinis didn’t help; red wine and vodka are panty droppers and I can quickly lose sight of limits.

I couldn’t get full. Once home, after a bag of Boulder Canyon chips, spinach salad with blue cheese crumbles and rustic torn ciabatta bread (with butter), I still wanted more. There wasn’t any since most everything in my healthy living, fresh kitchen requires cooking (hence the odd binge). I went to bed sad and let down and angry with myself, fearing what morning would bring.

Aside from a bit of water bloat showing in the puffy pink lines around my eyes, I felt fine. Really good in fact. Perhaps my binge was a purge. I woke early to make a cardio and weights class; near the end of 90 sweaty minutes I tasted a faint, odd burp, but was surprised at the energy and endurance coming out of my body. I had a good deal of fuel to burn. I pounded loads of water and citrus all day, and made a light, lemony herb de Provence roasted chicken for dinner after finding beautiful Meyers at the grocery.

I always forgive the slip-and-falls, regroup and keep going. Mostly because this was me at Christmas last year. I know how to do this. There's want and need to keep going.

Last night was about comfort, an eating frenzy born not of boredom or relationships or family or money. Or being lonely. It was about writing. The career wish I made came true, I’m paid to write and it comes with a dental plan. And I like it very much. Now I’m also taking on general business writing for our Web site that garners millions of hits per day. They asked for me specifically. They want my words. And I don’t want to give them anymore. I miss my writing and at the end of the day (paycheck and moderately comfortable living aside), am starting to resent work taking all the words, leaving me exhausted to express mine. I want my toes to curl too. I don’t know when (or if) I’ll get the stones to jump from a steady ledge, but feel the hands pressing on my back.

I'll just try to keep them out of my mouth.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Get The Party Started

Update: Early voting rocks. I was in and out (dirty) in 10 minutes.
In Colorado, today is Election Day. So is tomorrow and every day until Halloween. Local media reports a larger percentage of those identified as Democrats then Republicans have cast ballots so far in early voting, which began Monday. Red may turn blue this year.

Completed my sample ballot last night and it’s a long one. The big man was a quick and easy bubble, but the Referendums and Amendments ad nauseam required study of a scholarly nature. I became one with the little blue “2008 State Ballot Information Booklet” for two straight, sober hours (however, there’s something hip and naughty about deciding history while in both pajamas and bed). I’m an educated, good with words woman, but found myself reading for and against arguments over and over, drilling down to the true meaning. All good marketing whores know how to spin copy; when others do it the alarms go off in my head like kitchen smoke alarm versus greasy broiler pan. It’s maddening how often the word “could” is used.

“The Referendum COULD affect state and local tax”
“The Addendum COULD fund future prairie dog and puppy killing”

How do the moderately stupid people get through it, the ones who use “your” incorrectly and spell it “suprise”?
SuRprisingly, I found myself voting against nearly every ballot issue, mostly due to limited definitions and muddy repercussions. The state needs funding for highway improvement, but is diverting severance tax revenue from water projects the way to get her done? Why bestow 80% of new taxes generated from extended casino hours and increased single bet limits in mountain gambling towns solely to community colleges (the fancy term for 13th Grade)? I rolled eyes at the Amendment to allow the state to hold business executives criminally accountable should they knowingly participate in fraudulent practices. The Feds got that covered, but out here in the West we likes to hang ‘em twice.

Most troubling is Amendment 48, which would define “person” as “any human being from the moment of fertilization.” Since LifeStyles® stop a potential person from swimming up and latching onto my innards, I could be guilty of manslaughter on a good weekend.

Sometimes two or three times a night.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Not An Addict

Dealing with serious addiction is soul wrenching, to be certain.

Why do it on TV?

Intervention on A&E offers a voyeuristic, gritty look at addiction and its effects on loved ones, families and friends. As the show title implies, the goal and final act is to encourage or softly threaten treatment at a facility (one that always requires getting on a plane right there, right now). Given A&E stands for “Arts and Entertainment” (although Gene Simmons Family Jewels on a channel bearing that acronym is a bit of an oxymoron) the series is deep and serious in tone. But it begs the question; is agreeing to be filmed for a documentary about addiction (the premise given participants) while in the fog of a chemical or other reality-altering mind-set valid? Maybe they’re too stoned, tweaked, starving or drunk to realize the dupe. Or like many acts of self destruction, perhaps it’s a televised cry for help. And costly treatment may be something regular Kurt and Courtney’s couldn’t get without media exposure as the price paid.

Another season of the VH1 series Celebrity Rehab premiers this week, although the term “celebrity” is more defined as gosh-you-look-familiar-did-we-go-to-the-same-school-I-just-can’t-place-it.

After watching an extended premier clip, former American Idol contestant Nikki McKibbin’s snippet is pure heartbreak. After doing lines with her MOTHER in a bathroom, Mom went home, took her meds and died. That’s some serious, sad shit.

Jeff Conaway is back for another madcap, wacky season. I remember Jeff Conaway as Bobby Wheeler on Taxi, all high-waisted jeans, brown Naugahyde jacket and feathered hair. I had such a 12-year old girl crush on him. He’s back and star of the show, nasal voice and creepy Uncle/baby talk, a stooped over and shuffling old man. And seemingly desperate for attention. The pain and painkiller addiction is quiet real; apparently he’s had severe back problems and many surgeries. But he’s been clouded and acting it out since Celebrity Fit Club. As an actor, does he consider these VH1 stints his job, his craft? Like when phlebotomists say they work in medicine?

Fame, or the faint smell of it, must be so intoxicating. Just 15 more minutes, please.

We’re all addicts, slaves to things that feel good in the moment. Sex, food, drink, shopping, TV. Some of us hide it better, some can stop for breaks, some manage pain well enough to function each day, however hanging by a string. When used to mask something darker, when it destroys, when co-enabled it becomes something frightening. Addiction and recovery is real and raw; it can cost or reclaim lives and dignity.

Why play it out on TV? Guess for the same reason cars slow past a bad accident. Or why Jerry Springer has been on the air since the early 1990s. We can watch and judge and compare and breathe a sigh knowing how really messed up other people are.

And damn, I watch a lot of reality TV.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

"Suck it!"

I met Chelsea Handler yesterday. I think. Chelsea Handler is an L.A. comedienne with a celebrity skewer chat show in E! and two best sellers on the New York Times list. She’s raunchy and smarmy - my kind of woman - and her book of humorous essays “Are You There, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea” has earned mostly positive reviews.

She’s no Amy Sedaris.

It was a 5:00 p.m. book signing at the Tattered Cover downtown. The e-mail I’d received Friday afternoon from fellow marketing whores at a Denver magazine suggested getting there at 4:00. I could easily wait out an hour or so, browsing the shelves and the men. Nope. This was no mere signing, it was an ink and run. There was product to move.

Buy the book!Get a ticket!Here's your number in line! Post-it bearing my name stuck to the inside cover to speed the process, I braved a wobbly walkway to a private room and waited. Gushing fans were excited to meet her. I anticipated writing inspiration in the pages of the fresh hardcover. I got four, nearly five chapters in. The personal tales are funny, quick quipped and clever, some seemingly fanciful (like her cavalier approach to a night spent locked up in Sybil Brand – where the Manson girls had long slumber parties - after a DUI stop in her 20’s). Her telling of stories from childhood read like Judy Blume through a modern, twisted kids lens; picking a wedgie out of winter pants while wearing oversized mittens reads like poetry.

She flew in (literally), a teenytiny ball of energy in black leggings and either barefoot or wearing flesh colored flip flops, minimal to no makeup, hair and blouse askew as if she’d been napping on the drive over. She exclaimed how tired she was, how she’d just downed a Red Bull. We’d been warned by staff prior to her arrival that she had a stand up gig at 8:00. It was just after 5 p.m. and there were nearly 200 people in the room. I bet she was signed, sealed and out of there in an hour. I was number 64 and as I watched the feverish pace, herded like cattle on speed, I felt silly, a bit used and dirty and not in a good way. I was through the line in mere seconds; she wouldn’t have recognized me if her car ran me down twice on the way out, keeping head down, quickly scribbling while I said hello and attempted to introduce myself.

I checked the inscription after:

Jodie -
Suck it!
xo
Chelsea (or something that may read “army ant” or “Adnan”)

When I’m published, I will be impeccable at signings (appearance and manner), and insist upon coffee and baked goods for everyone. Scones perhaps. I'd at least bother with some blush and a smear of gloss.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Body Language

Today is National Love Your Body Day (but banks are open and you must pay parking meters). I’d not heard of this annual event but Google says it’s a day promoted by the National Organization of Women (NOW) to call attention to harmful images of women in the media and encourage ladies to celebrate their bodies.

Besides the odd glance when "Nylon" or "Rolling Stone" isn't available at the hairdresser, I gave up fashion rags ages ago (although I admit I like the sex tips and techniques served up in “Cosmo”; last trip for lowlights I got the down low about the proper way to be banged against a wall). The airbrushed and PhotoShop images in magazines aren’t realistic; a trip to the mall or any outdoor festival will confirm that. In truth, it's the empirically-no-denying-beautiful ones that are the oddballs.

Beauty and sex appeal is absolutely in the eye of the beholder. I’m drawn to men with a swagger only I can define. I know from the voice if there’ll be lust and tequila. As for women, I don’t like implants, especially the larger than life, cannonball variety; they just don’t look like any fun. I prefer porcelain white skin to overly tan. Freckles playing across nose, cheeks and shoulders are hot, playful. Luckily, or perhaps more telling, the skin stretched over my bones is translucent and you could connect the dots and find constellations on my dermas. Go figure, what I find beautiful in other woman is exactly what I have.

NOW has posted a page of “offensive” ads, deemed negative portrayals of women in advertising, on their Web site. I’m not offended. I find some funny, some erotic and some merely stupid. Is there a similar backlash against the Polo underwear bulge or hairless and bare-chested men, nipples erect, selling fragrance? Do men feel inadequate; require ballet slipper or sock padding? Do men find moose knuckle demeaning?

I like to look at pretty people. I may try blending two shades of eye makeup seen in a MAC campaign, or drool over heels impossibly stiletto. But I don’t disregard the wondrousness that is me after looking at a flat image on a page.

Not to rain on the flesh parade, a healthy body is paramount. Eating right, taking regular exercise and the “everything in moderation” credo does wonders not only for health and longevity, but your head, happiness and a positive self-image.

To celebrate NLYB Day I'm going to the gym, then the bakery for a brownie after. Sounds just about perfect. True love. Absolutely perfect would add a man with flat abs and solid shoulders in my bed to love my body too.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Don't Sit Under The Apple Tree

Until I end my ink-on-the-fingers daily newspaper subscription in favor of purely online news (save Sunday, which calls for feet on ottoman, cat asleep on ankles, chocolate chip bagel from Einstein’s and hours spent perusing), my morning ritual is to scan page one while coffee percolates. An AP piece made the front page of my Denver daily.

A girl tossed an apple a day to a prisoner of Nazis. Years after the war, they met again.

In the few paragraphs I skimmed, a story unfolded of a teenage boy held in a concentration camp in Nazi-controlled Germany. A somewhat younger girl, living outside the camp with family, hiding true identities, would throw an apple to him each day over the barb-wire fence. This went on for months. They never spoke, only said quick goodbyes, but would meet again.

Just aches Spielberg project with Dakota Fanning in the lead, yes?

I pulled the section and set it aside to finish the article later, but the gist stayed with me through a full work day, hour of spinning and late dinner. That apple. That simple act. How often does someone throw you an apple over the fence? How often do you throw first? When Molly Ringwald’s Claire asked basket case Allison Reynolds (Ally Sheedy), “What do your parents do to you?” and she replied “They ignore me,” she got an apple. The apple analogy I couldn’t shake all day.

After dinner, I returned to the story to flesh out details. I believed the tale would find that teenage boy and somewhat younger girl connecting years later, perhaps found online or via archives, now cherished friends bound by a story of survival and human kindness. Turns out that boy meet up with that girl a decade later and a continent away, on a blind date no less. Neither realized they’d meet before. During casual dinner conversation it was revealed.

She spoke of a boy she would visit, of the apples she would bring, how he was sent away. And then, the words that would change their lives forever: "That was me," he said.

Marriage was proposed that night. Two months later she accepted. Herman and Roma Rosenblat have been married 50 years and their story has inspired a children's book and film plans (hope Fanning hasn’t budded into wondrous female adulthood just yet).

It all seems too remarkable to be believed. Rosenblat insists it is all true.

I want to believe it’s 100%, solidly, love is a many splendored thing true. Epic, sometimes seemingly unbelievable stories are often born as quiet folklore to soften hard blows and allow us to believe good endures under the shroud of bad.

Michael Berenbaum, Holocaust scholar, has read Rosenblatt's memoir and sees no reason to question it; "I wasn't born then so I can't say I was an eyewitness. But it's credible. Crazier things have happened."

I guess.

And you know, true or imagined or embellished by time, the apple analogy I couldn’t shake all day.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Devil With a Blue Dress On

Surprisingly, the espresso brownie at Starbucks is not that good. Actually it’s awful, heavier than should be, mealy and more carob than chocolate tasting. Burning through yet another writing deadline Friday afternoon, I rationalized having the treat.

I've been “rationalizing” more often lately, however, and have a Halloween costume to fit into. After years of falling in the work week - and my tradition of making a pot of “ghoul”ash, awaiting the five or so kids who come Trick-or-Treating through my mostly adult neighborhood before fishing out and eating all the Milky Way Midnight’s myself - the holiday is on a Friday. A favorite local band (“hard country” they call themselves, although a Ramones set is planned, punks at heart they are) plays at an almost dive that serves a quality filthy martini for a mere $4 (Grey Goose even). And recently-happily-single brother Robert is on board for some long, long overdue fun and worthwhile mingling with the ladies.

I'm not a traditional Halloween costume girl. Past dress-ups include punk rock Mouseketeer sophomore year in college. Wore my actual childhood “Mickey” ears, the real deals, black felt with my name stiched in cursive gold thread on back, oversized and strategically ripped t-shirt, low-slong leather and chain belt over a too short, too tight black mini. White schoolgirl socks to mid-thigh and Mary Jane’s with a heel. One year I wore my old Girl Scout uniform, sash, badges, beret and all (as a fat pre-teen, it fit the merely chunky adult me like a short mini-dress).

This year I’m “Devil With a Blue Dress On”. Found a short, jersey dress in royal blue, originally $124, marked all the way down to $19.99 at Macy’s. It’s a halter with no back, meaning no bra; strapless versus large B’s is more an exercise in yanking up all night than support. However, the size smaller fit beautifully in the waist and hips, tight enough tied around the neck the tits should sit where placed (nipples upward, always). And if I do say so, Betty and Wilma sit perkier these days, the result of hours and hours of pec work. For more sexy than pageant-ey, underneath a tiered black lace petticoat I’ve had since the 1984 Cyndi Lauper costume, courtesy of Contempo Casuals (funny, that crinoline sold back then as outwear. I miss the underpants 80’s). Shiny red vinyl horns and tail, black fishnets and (still to buy) pointy-toed red high heels. May shop Guess for accessories; they have a line of gothic crosses, on black chains with jet stones, that would nestle nicely.

Which brings me back to “rationalizing.” The scale this morning has me on track, just a pound over my lowest weight yet, and I woke early, leaving the feathery down bosom of bed for trainers and an hour of step cardio with weights. Although I wouldn’t say it’s entirely true nothing tastes as good as thin(ner) feels (after all, there are french fries dipped in Ranch dressing in the world), planning and actually pulling off a sexy costume feels…normal. Doable. That wasn't the case when I was an adult size 18. It’s in your head, really, not your ass or your abs. Sophia Loren is quoted as saying, “Sex appeal is 50% what you've got and 50% what people think you've got” and it’s fast become a mantra.

I'll be bat shit crazy when I reach my goal, whatever that is. Haven't decided. I'll know when I get there.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Miracle Drug

No man can write a love letter like Bono. Even if not a story exclusively between man and woman, I feel heat and longing, smell the musky cologne in his lyrics. I assuredly declare should a man ever exclaim his passion and pleasure and admiration and chemical reaction for me like it’s done here, I’m his forever.

I want to trip inside your head
Spend the day there...
To hear the things you haven't said
And see what you might see

I want to see your thoughts take shape
And walk right out

The songs are in your eyes
I see them when you smile
I've seen enough I'm not giving up
On a miracle drug

Melts my dark chocolate heart every time.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Debate Night in America, bitches!

Live blogging while chuckling thought the second Presidential debate. Refresh yourself. I'm here for 90 mins.

***
Does McCain’s roll remind anyone else of the old guy Tim Conway played in "The Carol Burnett Show?" The shuffling guy? Watch the wide-stance walk. I'd piss myself seeing that shuffle up to me like he's working the question askers.
***
Fannie and Freddie. Sounds like a decent porn.
***
Shazam. Now that Obama. Sort hot, like a clean-cut Jimi Hendrix. Rock star. And he works that one foot up, one foot hooked on the stool casual sexy thing.
***
Did I mention I'm two glasses of chardonnay in?
***
WhyTF does McCain keep heading into the stands and calling everyone "my friends"? Creepy. He's that college professor you fear getting too close, the one who's always hard on approach and crotch is at seated eye level.
***
Tom Brokaw, cheeky monkey. Reporters have such egos.
***
Crap, wish I was hungry. Dinner's done. Orange roughy baked with McCormick's "Salmon" seasoning, because I'm a dirty rebel. And an artichoke big as my head. I just want the butter to dribble.
***
I am notnotnot a wasteful American consumer! I live modest. I drive a fucking Honda. I'm a greedy bitch and don't want to bail your asses out anymore.
***
Lotta 'staches in that audience. And is that Sarah Palin sans glasses in the back row???
***
Hope I'm not missing a new episode of "Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency."
***
McCain has really short arms, Tyrannosaurus-like.
***
The drinking game is the McCain "my friends."
***
That $5K tax credit will cost, mother fucker. The cash goes to the insurance company and the tax on it goes to the people.
***
Dinner so yum. I can cook. And am adventurous in bed. Why don't I land a good man??
***
Oh, now I want sweet. I would blow you for brownie right now.
***
Why do I have the feeling McCain still sings "Bomb Iran" in the mirror while brushing?
***
Yeah, I'm suddenly bored enough to go over and check out TMZ or amateur porn on Xtube. Focus, focus...
***
"What don't you know and how will you learn it?" Good question!
***
Oh, that's it? Hmm...not the fireworks I expected. Well, good night and God (or Buddha or whatevah) bless America!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Sunday, September 28, 2008

They say it's your birthday (revisited)

On reflection, the big 43 didn't completely suck. "Completely suck" is lemon juice on an open cut or squirrel hit by car or too much red meat and coffee diarrhea. This was the first birthday in ages I spent with my best pal from youth, my "little" brother Robert, who's really alive and sober and happy after a long stretch of not-so-much. And we spent it with live music in a dive bar, "doghouse bass" and banjos in the mix. And fuck if I don't look 43.

Aside from the fact, yes, I made one more revolution around the sun, absolutely healthy and somewhat happy, the birthday ummm...pretty much sucked ass. No beautiful cake (but I planned ahead, bought myself a will-do-num-choco cupcake from a little hippie bakery on Boulder's Pearl Street to assure I wouldn’t fail the "must have cake on your birthday" karmic rule), no bottle of champagne. Not much fuss or paying much mind.

Single (read: alone) on your birthday is either the stuff of sitcoms or a very lonely day indeed. Sans family makes it more so. That's why we have tequila.

The day did bring me back to a brother. Means everything, really.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Tonight I'm gonna party like it's 1999

No man gets my heart pounding like Mr. Cusack and George W., although for entirely different reasons.

I own a quaint (read: small) townhome I can afford, planned and paid for in advance just one spendy get-away in the last decade (albeit a really grand one – mostly piss poor company aside - Bermuda, snuggling the dolphins, topped by a show at Madison Square Garden with my beloved Bono) and have total combined credit card debt of less than four figures (to which I make double, sometimes triple, sometimes full payments monthly). And I’m among the scolded, broadcast nationally, like kids who overspent their allowance. Taxpayers are being asked to fund a $700 billion bailout of overly compensated men and woman entrusted to manage national finances (and who failed) and those with pithy means who wanted it all and wanted it now.

How about we tax the stupid people, those who dart into oncoming traffic and lack the personal responsibility to refrain from buying McMansion homes and playthings out of realistic reach?

Until then, let's party like there’s no tomorrow and we've months to live, like Jerry Lewis in "Hook, Line and Sinker." Finance (but not pay for, paying is for suckers) the cute bungalow priced at four times my annual salary with the imported Spanish backsplash tiles in the best Denver boutique neighborhood. Sleep with the marrieds, skip the condoms and the SPF. Drink and drive. Eat what I want and simply have the golden aftermath sucked out via a lipo tube. I’ll fly you to Europe, baby, and buy you horses and diamonds.

Why live like there are consequences?

Life's Been Good

I’m happily busy creating exquisite marketing collateral for a Fortune 500, billion dollar conglomerate, braless and wearing the super soft Old Navy t-shirt I slept in last night while “Tiny Toons” hums on the DVD in the living area.

I may hit Macy’s at lunch, or the gym.

Hell, yeah.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Hurts So Good

Sore from a busy weekend, I just had a quick soak in Epsom salt. Residual aches linger from Friday amusement park thrashings and a pleasurable rough ride Saturday night. At any given time, I have freshly sprouted or fading into green and yellow copper bruises along my body; the two newest an indigo blue mark the size of a silver dollar on my upper thigh (roller coaster) and a peachy-red patch on the inside of my left wrist, about the size of a man’s thumb and about where one would hold someone down.

I ache somewhere every single day of the week, more so due to a recent fitness quest than frolicking. The hottest bodies, the men and woman lusted after and cat called who proudly display results of lifetimes of work - and those of us who are a work in progress - are often in pain and/or medicated (and not in the fun Courtney Love kind of way).

My gym routine has become just that, a regularly scheduled, same Bat-time, same Bat-channel piece of every day:

Monday, a full hour of spinning on a cycle with a small, hard seat and much up and down motion that's resulted - on occasion - in interesting linear bruising in an interesting place. Yeah. There.

Tuesday, a lunchtime spin and thirty minutes of weight training.

Wednesday, Cardio Kickboxing, an hour of mostly invisible ass kicking and much “power” work: squats, push-ups, deep lunges into full lateral jumps. It hurts. A lot.

Thursday, my new favorite, Cardio Kick and Sculpt. See “Wednesday” plus 45 minutes of strength training using weights and the Bosu Ball. It hurts. More than a lot.

Friday, Saturday and Sunday I mix it up, perhaps a fun Cardio Hip Hop (where my more-white-than-realized-inner-dancer is unleashed) or step class, time on the elliptical or treadmill. Sometimes I give myself a day or two off.

Fitness isn’t pretty. It’s daily doses of Bayer Back and Body, rashes, gnarled toes, blisters and sore feet. Oh, and regular stink. It’s also addictive. Once fully on board, a stop of just a few consecutive days results in the most unpleasant side effects – crankiness, feeling bloated, not sleeping well. And damn if the only way to make it all better is to put down the cocktails and appetizers, get back into the gym and the produce section.

Happily, the new mind set is finally getting the job done. I still imbibe, enjoy a couple glasses of wine a night, a dirty or beer out with friends. I eat amazing and tasty food, loads of lean protein, seafood and vegetables (last night’s Emmy binge? Red bell pepper strips dunked in zippy homemade ranch - ask for the recipe, you’ll never, ever do bottled again), frozen whipped yogurt, dark chocolate and iced coffee with a splash of vanilla soy milk, dried cherries and crunchy almonds, chewy whole grain pasta with olive oil, capers, kalamatas and feta, sushi and sake on occasion…I could go on and on. Yet I still go down a handful of pounds a month.

Macy's is a regular weekend destination and I find myself in the lingerie department more often than not, knee deep in satin slips and frilly baby dolls, lacey bras and panties. Fitted jackets, slim jeans, heels; I'm always in heels now. I even bought a white trench coat with a tie belt. I never wore anything belted.

When men say I'm cute and funny and my teeth aren't teeth, but pearl, I just lap it up like honey, I enjoy being a sore, sometimes stinky girl.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A funny feeling in my tummy

As I contemplate another orbit around the sun, cake and candles and blowing on tap for next week, one year older is on my mind. Aging shows itself in odd and unexpected ways. Like the small knot that sat in my stomach most of yesterday afternoon and evening, the results of a crunchy big salad at lunch. At age 8 and 15 and 25, I paid no mind to digesting raw vegetables or dairy. In inaugural drinking years (also known as college), I imbibed without concern of mixing beverages from the fruit family, hops and grains, clear and dark liquors; a large helping of pancakes wet with real butter or weighty cheese-and-chili-fries at Denny’s before sleep, then a quick chaser of fountain Coke in the morning, put me right the next day. Now that extra dirty or third glass of red leaves me fuzzy around the edges.

Last night, I played for hours at a private party held at Denver’s downtown amusement park (think Six Flags smack dab in the middle of tall buildings and rail yards, Interstate 25 busily humming alongside). Private party meant no lines and little waiting; we rat-mazed quickly through metal handrails and endless steps. We rode four roller coasters in a row, in less than thirty minutes, even stayed a couple of times for a double-go-round. I’ll take on anything that spins or flips or rolls and dips. I enjoy being suspended stories up and held entirely upside down, thrown about and manhandled by centrifugal force.

I woke up this morning sore. My neck aches from side-to-side slamming, biceps stiff from hanging on so tight; feet swollen from sandals absolutely inappropriate for this type of adult playground (then again, I never choose appropriate shoes, my only lace ups are those worn to the gym).

Aging is physical, flying squirrel-bat-wing flaps of under arm flesh and nipples requiring adjustment to an up and outward stance. The littlest and biggest toenails changing shades, taking on a yellowy hue. Gravity versus a ball sack. The gray creeps in my part every four weeks, as does the occasional budding of silvery southern stubble (luckily that pasture is strictly maintained and mowed). I’m somewhat wrinkle free after teen years spent in the shade or under a thick layer of SPF 50 to protect fair and freckled skin while other basted in baby oil. Been mostly spared deep lines and birds feet. Kicking the nicotine habit a decade ago helped saved my face, as does a daily intake of loads and loads of water (my motto? "Pee Clear").

Aging is emotional and intellectual, wisdom culled from years of lessons learned, showing in self-love and awareness and better orgasms. Bigger paychecks. Saying “no” (sometimes “fuck no”) and meaning it. Loving me more, allowing the inner bitch out when needed and feeling perfectly suited wearing her stiletto heels and cherry lips.

For all its turns and flips and bad behavior and broken hearts, I love the roller coaster.

“When I was nineteen, Grandpa took me on a roller coaster. Up, down, up, down. Oh, what a ride! I always wanted to go again, it was just so interesting to me that a ride could make me so frightened, so scared, so sick, so excited and so thrilled all together! Some didn't like it. They went on the merry-go-round. That just goes around. Nothing. I like the roller coaster. You get more out of it.”

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Because it still matters

Had a habit for many years, on this day, to express love, admiration, pathos, longing for the people who brushed by my time here. Just in case, you know. Seven years since, the list is sadly shorter. And happily longer. No less meaningful. Those who know, know it. Those who want to think it, you have it. No questions. Doesn’t have to be a question mark at the end.

Much love.

From the bottom of my black heart*

The Good
"Sensuous. Inclined to luxuriate in the things which give gratification to the senses. Anxious to experience life in all its aspects, to explore all possibilities, she resents any restriction or limitation being imposed on her and insists on being free and unhampered."

The Bad
“Wants to overcome a feeling of emptiness and to bridge the gap which she feels separates herself from others. An un-admitted lack of confidence makes her feel she must make the best of things as they are.”

The Ugly Truth
“The fear that she may be prevented from achieving the things she wants leads her into a relentless search for satisfaction in the pursuit of illusory or meaningless activities.”

Sounds about right. Go test yourself.

*Courtesy of hip Don and the free ColorQuiz.com personality test

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

La petite mort

Lance Armstrong has announced plans to emerge from self-imposed retirement to compete in professional cycling in 2009, quite possibly (and of course) to include another Tour de France and possible eighth champion’s title. Armstrong says he will take no salary and no bonuses, and quite frankly he doesn’t need them. And quite frankly he'll still make millions. And quite frankly there may be some desire to reclaim that spotlight; he has an ego like any other hero athlete, banging Kate Hudson included (but in all fairness eventually all of us will have banged Kate Hudson).

I got hooked on the Tour in the years of Armstrong’s dominance. I’d awake early for 20-some days every July to catch live coverage and commentary streaming from almost-too-purple-to-be-true lavender fields of Provence, hors catégorie mountain climbs, cobblestone streets and miles of pavement carrying “Fuck you Armstrong!” messages scrawled in pastel chalks. I knew all the riders names, all the stages, all the bulges.

Then scandal. Doping. Landis. Hamilton. I don’t believe Armstrong partakes. His tool, his body, is built differently than yours and mine. He extracts more oxygen from every breath and uses it to generate more power. His heart can pump more blood per minute and beat more times than the average heart. During his cycling career he peed in more bottles than a van full of frat boys on a long road trip with few rest stops. If he’s hiding doping, he does so brilliantly, one slippery dick.

He’s an inspiration to those facing uncertain futures, a dragon slayer who beat back the demon eating at his body. This year alone, nearly eight million people will die of cancer worldwide. I knew one. Chances are you did too. If he rides for them or for him, it doesn’t matter. It's hope and it's entertainment and it's buckets of research money and it’s helping those in fear turn that into action and it’s education.

It’s about living, not just about dying. Viva le Lance.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

It's Martini Time!

With David Duchovny entering rehab to address a self-admitted, overly froggy nature, sex addition has made mainstream news. The Web site sexhelp.com offers online testing to self-diagnose and determine ones level of constant want of feet-in-the-air, or in more clinical terms, “…to assist in the assessment of sexually compulsive behavior which may indicate the presence of sex addiction."

Curious, I took the test and scored a scant (and surprising) mere 8 out of 20, making my saucy proclivity more a hobby than issue to be addressed. Break out the condoms!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Jenny From The Block

The celebrity bred and fed, all-encompassing sense of self-importance and grandeur makes me nauseous. Or is that a flutter, the weirdest little flourish of life coming from my womanly innards? I have trouble chewing and swallowing the notion that Jennifer Lopez, a.k.a. JLo, a.k.a. Jenn Pants, insisted during her much ballyhooed, Doublemint pregnancy, “…this is the first time in my life where I'm just going to be a little bit selfish.” Her publicity machine certainly doesn’t spin it that way, screaming gold-chandeliers-in-the-baby-nursery-mama-in-a-Dolce-and-Gabba-mumu, nails and hair perfect.

A book of photos of oneself as a “gift”? Not unless those pictures where of a filthy and erotic nature, something useful for a girls “alone time” and accompanied by batteries and various saucy accoutrements. Did I mention my birthday is this month?

Don’t be fooled by the stones that she got.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

I Want You to Want Me

She’s bigger than John McCain.

Since emerging as pick for republican VP candidate, Sarah Palin has become queen of the tabloids, on the new covers of Us Weekly, OK!, People and the National Enquirer. She’s fodder for internet rumor and innuendo, the lineage of her month’s old son in question, her not-yet-old-enough-to-vote daughters’ unwed baby bump exposed. John Edwards didn’t get so much negative press and he was dumb (or egotistical) enough to let the condom slip.

Sarah Palin's Dark Secrets!
Affair that nearly ruined her career!
Family war that exposed her lies!
Babies, lies and scandal!
The real truth about her baby!

Forget successful and powerful career woman, one who stands to possibly change the course of history. Her media fueled persona is more akin to teen-daughter-train-wreck-enabler Lynne Spears. Pictures have emerged on the Web of Palin from college days, pert and perky, and wearing a t-shirt that reads, “I may be broke, but I’m not flat busted.”

So. Fucking. What.

I want to feel proud that a woman may hold the second most powerful seat in the country (okay, third, after Oprah). But instead my vagina is sad. Is she scandalous merely because she’s a woman, an attractive one at that? Or is it simply that she doesn’t bring enough to the party, foisted upon the masses as the token woman. During this historical time in the presidential election process, women still get the fuzzy end of the lollipop. A country that once enslaved people of color now celebrate a skinny young black man, holds him in rock star grandeur. He sells out stadiums. He preaches and promises. He’s U2. But we’ve yet to accept a woman, any woman, as a leader of change. Strong woman are still bitches, effeminate women (like Palin) ditzy and misguided.

We’re smarter than this, boys and girls. It’s all just a cheap trick.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Pleasure Victim

I’ve overindulged. Give me a long weekend and I tend to go a bit off my boat. Too much food, too much drink, too much sex…well, really, how does one define “too much”?

When left to my own devices and without the confines of writing projects due, work responsibilities and alarm clocks, I overdo. I need constant stimulation. Sitting still, not an option.

Although the scale was kinder this morning than expected, I jumped into the precipice Friday; lunch with the ladies then a thorough scouring of the racks at Macy's, an evening of vodka dirties and a full, salty plate of fish and chips at a pub in the ‘burbs and an 80’s cover band. I adore the sounds of the 80’s, the music of my people. I get the passion and excitement another generation has for synth pop, leggings and red chucks. But I OD’ed soon after “Baby Got Back” and woke up Saturday oversalted and with a swollen tongue.

That night brought a new and interesting friend. We shared Chinese and chat and loads of red wine. He brought a present. Something akin to jewelry, worn in an interesting spot(s), something silvery and shiny on a somewhat delicate chain. Definitely new to the repertoire and highly recommended. The effects lasted a day after.

I ate the rest of the Chinese after he left.

Sunday and Monday, days spent lounging in soft cotton pajamas, reading the marvelous Stephanie Klein, mindlessly tonguing sour Jelly Bellys and the best soft, warm and ridiculously juicy peach I’ve had yet this summer (as we head into fall). Gin and tonics during The Jerry Lewis Telethon and a big bowl of salt-and-peppered edamame eaten much-too-late-last-night during a marathon of “Jon and Kate Plus 8” rounded out a long stretch of pleasure.

Today I redeem.

And how was your holiday?

Friday, August 29, 2008

I think I'm paranoid, manipulated

I admire and duly respect John McCain for dedicated service to his country. But 66 days from the election, he smells a bit of old man desperation.

First, at the conclusion of last nights Obamarama, my locals ran an “I’m John McCain, and I approve this message” televised message, congratulating Barrack on the nomination. McCain then whored out the moment adding, “…on this, an equally important day in the history of civil rights", a veiled reference to the 40-something anniversary of Dr. King’s “I have a Dream” speech. What I heard was this:

“How wonderful on a day a black man made history another black man made history by being the first black man to win a presidential nod. Way to go black man!”

Obama hasn’t run a campaign based on the color of his skin, however coffee with a good deal of cream the tone. He called upon the legacy of MLK only briefly in his Thursday speech. There are larger issues at hand, in this moment right now, where change is needed to move the country forward.

Then this morning McCain chose a relative unknown as running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (Sarah, Plain and Tall). It’s a woman! Shazam, the Republican party is hip and cool after all! She’s a devoted wife, PTA mom of five and just 44. Heck, I bet she even bakes and wears frilly nighties for “special times”. A devout Christian, she’s celebrating 20 years of marriage today - to an Alaskan oil man no less. Her son enlisted in the U.S. Army after September 11th and will soon deploy to Iraq. How nuclear family perfect! She even wore Tina Fey specs to smart down the pretty. Sounds like the start of classic, cheesy joke; "An African American, a pretty woman, an old man and Joe Biden walk into a bar…”

Oh, and how funny and ironical the crowd sang “Happy birthday” to John McCain at the beginning of this mornings announcement? That’s like pouring a fat-bottomed girl into white pleather pants in the hopes of looking svelte. Happy 72.

I’ve rolled my eyes so much in the last 24 hours I may have sprained one.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Soda pop terrorist

Apologies to all the heartfelt speechifyin’ of a historic nature, the best quote from the DNC so far comes from lovely hippie and now Colorado resident Daryl Hannah. Sniper interviewed by the sewer rats at Fox News, when asked, “What are doing here at the Democratic National Convention?” the Goldilocked mermaid replied, “I’m not going to the convention. I refuse to enter a building named after a beverage that causes obesity and diabetes”.

You can’t get a Rum and Coke at The Pepsi Center.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Let The River Run

No matter how protected, there can come a time each month when counting the days to 26 are a bit unnerving. Hormones, being what that they are, have a sense of humor; relief comes often at the least opportune time, saying hello in a pink wave.

Welcome, old friend, the day before a wedding and green satin, belly hugging gown. Or tomorrow while you tag along to a causal “25 Year High School Reunion” dinner to mingle with boys and girls, now men and women, each with a story to update and stomach to suck in.

Oh well. Dodged that bullet through another flip of the calendar.

Period.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The DNC is killing my social life

Five days and counting.

Soon Denver will be filthy with media (left and right), politicos, security goons and, oh yeah, loads of democrats. Welcome donkeys. When news broke the Democratic National Convention would make a summer home in Denver, I was stoked. History in the making. That yummy Anderson Cooper. The first African American presidential candidate. Hillary!

However, as the local media will do, the focus for weeks has been on the inconvenience, the added traffic, needed road closures, helicopters buzzing by (check out pal Amy’s high-rise vantage point of security runs) and being patted in the privates by men in black at every turn (okay, that doesn’t sound so bad). City dwellers are hunkering down, preparing as one would for a blizzard, stocking up on essentials and canceling social activities; they fear leaving the bosomy comfort of home and secure parking spots. ‘Burb buddies refuse to venture downtown, anywhere near major thoroughfares. Employees, fearing the crowds, delays and ticker tape, plan to work at home for the week, draining millions from city coffers in the way of lattes, parking and lunch.

Even the homeless are being shipped out to matinees daily.

Amy won’t come out to celebrate her birthday. Can’t get a girlfriend to catch the last of an outdoor summer concert series, one that requires being on the open road the day of Obama’s acceptance speech. Forget the booty call.

Better get laid by Monday, then gear up for a lonely week. Vodka? Check. Batteries? Check Check. Sex and politics, indeed.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Melts in your mouth, indeed

Do yourself a chocolatey favor, try M&M’s Premiums. I had an afternoon quickie with “Triple Chocolate”, plump layers of milk, dark and white with a purple passion veneer. Rich and sultry, I could take just one, two, three at most at one time.

Made me moan a bit like a girl doing something other than eating a chocolate candy.

Luscious.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

No sugar tonight in my coffee

“I’ll have a grande iced coffee, sweetened with two pumps caramel, one pump Chai, room for cream.”

That’s not coffee, that’s desert. A sugary, milky desert, crème brulee in liquid form. It’s no wonder Americans are fat and getting fatter. The amount of empty calories consumed in a quick Starbucks, Caribou or local mud house run are astronomical.

And when it comes to Joe, I'm a superfreak.

If studied in a chemical lab, science may determine I'm composed of approximately 10% coffee, the rest bone and muscle and fat. I love coffee. A hot and steamy mug to burn off a morning hangover, foamy latte with a whisper of nutmeg or the sweaty grip of an iced coffee in summer. But I want coffee, no macchiato-with-whip-cherry-on-top. Toppings on coffee? Toppings piled so high they require a specially engineered dome lid? The latte is my “fancy” and always with soy milk. Often it’s a meal, grabbed and consumed while running errands of after the gym, a late morning belly filler and breakfast replacement. Iced coffee I splash with cream, turning it a light mocha color, sort of the brown to toffee Beyonce sports via airbrushing in those controversial new L’Oreal ads.

Sometimes it’s best to leave things be.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

We are the champions, my friends

I have the Olympic fever.

Every two years I think casually, “Ehh…the Olympics. Means Conan will be on very, very late.” Then I find myself excited to catch a glimpse of the 400 meter men’s relay, live from Beijing (truth told, I stop and watch whenever the men are swimming. Goodness, they have nice shoulders).

Last night, between eating away at yet another corporate deadline and leftover Chinese and catching up on blog reading, women’s team gymnastics played in the background. By the end of the evening, as I slid into bed around midnight, the U.S. team earned a silver medal. Why is it when a team or athlete earns anything less than gold the press diminish the achievement? Guess they go for “good TV” or the "better read."

My goal going into college was to come out a music writer, or a writer of non fiction, and that meant acceptance and training at the CU Boulder School of Journalism. As someone who financed school 100%, attending classes and working retail nearly full time, I had little room for error, little wiggle room. Had to get 'er done. Once accepted in the school (not a simple task; at that time for every 200 applicants the school took in perhaps 20 or 30) you had to select an area of study – Advertising, Broadcast Journalism, something to do with the electronics shenanigans that made it all happen and Public Relations. I was Broadcast Journalism, thirsting for libel law, better copy writing skills, how to work the AP Wires and what made a good story great. I went to school, however, in the heyday of the tabloid press where style often won over substance. I’d barely make it to class in rolled cuff sweats and last nights makeup, only to sit with perfectly air brushed girls dressed in skirts…and heels. Stepford sorority sister and fluffy local weather girl rolled in one. Some boys already had the newscaster tan or sports writer drinking issues. I began to dislike how and what I was being taught, the obtrusive JonBenét debacle). After a passionate talk with the Dean, I completed my degree with a split major in Broadcast Journalism and Public Relations, minor in history.

Which brings me to last night and U.S. women’s gymnastics team captain Alicia Sacramone. She fell while mounting the balance beam and ended up butt down on her final floor routine. It was one small misstep (of many, team wide) that put a gold medal out of reach but delivered the silver. Post event in a live interview, the NBC commentator, a women, went for the emotional jugular, each question more leading and pointed than the last, the kind of questions you ask passive-aggressively during an argument to gauge a reaction. Sacramone chewed her lower lip, face slowly blushing to amber, swallowing deeply, trying to convey strength in a moment of personal disappointment, rightfully proud of her team’s accomplishment and beating herself up a bit. The interviewer stayed insistent, bemoaning the mistakes instead of celebrating any success, a bit like a hovering mother disappointed in her child's performance. A punch to the gut would have got it over with more quickly.

Move to an interview with the full team, girls rallying around their leader and showing true grace, encouraging watchers to realize “We WON a silver” while Sacramone stood behind the tiny pack, most of the lower half of her face blocked. With each prodding and prying, “She really let you guys down, huh?” question, her eyes darted upward and around the emptying stadium, as if wishing she could transport herself out of the situation and go have a good, long cry.

"No one else made mistakes, so it's kind of my fault," Sacramone said, still trying to blink back the tears from her red-rimmed eyes. "I think everybody knows you always have good days and bad days. I just wish today was a good day."

Still, at the end of it, not an entirely bad one.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Stay With Me

It’s odd how the smell of another lingers on you the next day. Even after shower and shampoo, it’s olfactory memory. He smelled musky and earthy, a bit like a wild mushroom. I liked it.

I wanted him stay the night, take a shower in the morning. I’m thinking he’d have chosen either the Green Apple or Strawberries and Cream shower gel.

He was too “in his head”, he said, to sleep. The ticking time bomb of the second hand a reminder of slumber slipping away. Certainly understand. I can’t sleep in an unfamiliar place; it takes time to adjust to a hotel room, a new mattress, a new person. Chances are I’d have only dozed, a strange presence and weight in a space usually reserved for one. Kind of wish I hadn’t got up for water, broken from the spoon and the cocoon of enveloping arms. I actually felt petite tucked into his chest. But then somehow I couldn’t get back in.

It was the first time in a long time I was okay with the staying. First time in a long time I knew what it must feel like when I encourage the going.

Monday, August 11, 2008

I'll take "Sex" for $200, Alex

Funny, sex as the litmus test.

Defining chocolate or shopping, a five-course meal or rock climbing “better than sex” is something of a misnomer. Rather the underlying message is, given the opportunity, I would choose sex (in some form or fashion); however, if not an option at present, look instead to the happy, heart pounding distraction.

Sex is the place marker, the definition. What fun aspires too.

I like the high from a hard physical workout. The surprise of one hot bead of sweat falling from the tip of my nose as I pound quads on a spinning bike until they burn, ready to explode in a spent, wet puddle with one more rotation of the wheel, one more turn of the tension crank, harder and harder, before the sweet release of a downhill stretch. Or pumping out mile after mile on the elliptical, back drenched, hips and torso bouncing side to side, up and down, rhythmic, slower than faster.

But better than sex? Better than flesh on flesh, bone on bone? Nahhhhh. Accept no substitute.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Serendipity

–noun 1.
1. an aptitude for making desirable discoveries by accident
2. good fortune; luck

A favorite word. Wanna know why? Because my eyes are open to it at all times. And it revealed itself again today.

I sleep on a 10-year old mattress. It causes my arms to evolve into sleepy tingles; rapid activity (wink wink) makes the metal canopy frame creak and moan in absurd comedy. So today I bought a beautiful cherry wood with inlay sleigh bed and expansive new mattress. Goodbye dangling toes. Can’t. Wait. To break it in. I also found a new oversize lovely for the living room, white with tan ticking, an oversized chair and ottoman. My old oversized chair and ottoman had seen better days, sprinkled in soy sauce, covered in cat fur and popped a back spring. But what to do with it? I despise the idea of dumpsters and landfills or paying Fred Sanford to cart it away. So I posted to Craigslist. Within minutes, the e-mail was chiming, the phone was ringing. It’s true, one’s trash is another’s treasure.

That’s how I met Lynn. Lynn just moved to Colorado from Oregon and is getting married this month. Her future to-have-and-to-hold lives in a bachelor pad; she's hunting for big girl furniture. I liked her immediately on the phone and didn’t feel she’d come over and nick my electronics.

The Serendipity part? I found a matching love seat, the same exact pattern, on Craigslist, just minutes from my home. $50. When Lynn got here I showed her the posting online; she’d already made phone contact and was hoping a casual drive by would earn her the seat. Can you imagine? Gave her all my extra pillows in hopes they’d find their eventual match. As we were finishing up, I asked her fiancé how they’d met. They met on eHarmony. My romantic choices run the fun gamut; fun for now, fun for a few months. Most times, going in, I know it’s not “it”. I've been thinking I want more, thinking matchmaker, matchmaker. But before I do, I should find a profile picture with less tits showing. And before I do, I have a couple of days coming with a new friend, a Denver firefighter on his way to Burning Man.

I have a new bed coming Tuesday. Can’t. Wait. To break it in.

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