Friday, September 30, 2011

Inappropriate Crushes

Have you heard about those couples that each have a list of celebrities that, if given the chance, they would be allowed to cheat with? You know, he's into Angelina, she's into Brad and should ever they have the opportunity to meet and actually sleep with those crushes, they are given the free pass? Well, my husband wants to us to have that kind of agreement. I'm all for it. I mean, do you really think Jay Z is going to let Beyonce sleep with my husband? I don't think so. So, he can go ahead and fantasize about her all he wants. The problem really is with me. My list is a little . . . um, gay? All of my celebrity crushes are either women (in cash my reference to having a husband didn't let on, I'm straight) or gay men. I just don't think this agreement is going to work for us!

Here's my list of inappropriate celebrity crushes:

1) Brooke Shields
Inappropriate factor: she's straight and so am I. But, I think I've been infatuated with her since I was 13 years old and she was in the "Nothing-gets-between-me-and-my-Calvins" Calvin Klein jean ads. And then there was the Blue Lagoon. And Christopher Atkins. Oh, boy! Granted, I had a crush on him then too. But, my love affair with Brooke has lasted through the years. She's beautiful, she's smart (listen to her in interviews: that Princeton education was not wasted on that Pretty Baby -- yes, an intentional bad reference!), and she's really funny. I think she's an under-rated actress. I'm actually contemplating talking my husband into a trip to NY so I can see her in The Addams Family on Broadway before her run is over on 12/31. Kinda stalker-ish maybe??

2) Neil Patrick Harris
Inappropriate factor: he's gay and I'm a straight woman. Sometimes, my crush is on Barney Stinson, the character he plays on How I Met Your Mother. Which is also wildly inappropriate since Barney is the BIGGEST womanizing dog on the planet. So, I guess that says a lot about Neil and his acting chops. He's convinced me that Barney is worthy of attraction and that so is the gay man who portrays him. Neil (notice I use first names, like we're friends!) is also extremely talented -- he acts, he sings, he dances, he hosts the awards shows with aplomb, he does magic tricks. And, most of all, he's very funny.

3) Anderson Cooper
Inappropriate factor: he's an unconfirmed gay and, again, I'm a straight woman. I wasn't fully aware of the Silver Fox's charms until I caught him filling in for Regis on Live with Regis and Kelly. I actually truly hoped his new daytime talk show wouldn't happen and he'd take over permanently for Regis when Reege leaves in November. Bummer, that's not happening. Well, would it be wrong to wish for his daytime show to flop so he could join Kelly in the co-host seat?? Anyway, the serious CNN newsman has a very funny side above and beyond the giggle fit he had about Gerard Depardieu on the air. He's also pretty humble about the fact that his mother comes from one of America's richest families. If he won't sleep with me, I'd really like us to be friends. Is that too much to ask??

4) Tim Gunn
Inappropriate factor: he's gay, and yet again, I'm a straight woman (see how this agreement is so not working out for me?!). How can you not like Tim Gunn? He's always nattily dressed and he has that way of looking over his glasses when you know he's just dying to diss those designs on Project Runway. But, he seems really kind and caring. I don't think I'd really ever want to sleep with him, but I would really love a big hug. And some fashion tips. Of course, I can never let on to him how many pairs of capri pants and capri jeans I own because he DESPISES them. Hmm, maybe we aren't meant to be . . . .

So, in the long run, I think my husband has the better hand in this deal. Should he ever get the chance, he's allowed to sleep with Beyonce or Drew Barrymore or Salma Hayeck. I, in turn, have got my work cut out for me!!

Oh, and I just watched the first episode of The Biggest Loser yesterday. Yeah, I think in a few weeks, Anna Kournakova is going to be added to this list. My list. Sigh. Big sigh.

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Birds and the Bees

The birds and the bees. Hmmph. I'm not talking about the fun kind. I'm talking pigeons and yellow jackets. They are making us crazy!

I just spent 5 minutes out back shooting wasp spray into a nook in our roof (the hell with these decorative crevices, they just invite creatures to come in and take over!). I'm on the attack. I killed two wasps in the kitchen and another is lurking up high (damn these 25-foot ceilings). Then I kept hearing little tap tap taps on the sliders. I went out, grabbed the wasp spray and took aim. Unfortunately, the spray distance and I are both too short so I shot a lot of air. So, I grabbed a patio chair (not the most sturdy to stand on, for the record) and took aim again. I got a few and a few flew away but I also made a mess of the house and the patio. Oh, and it's always windy here so I got a good dousing too. I moved over to the other side of this stupid eave and took aim again. Um, should have used the chair again because I'm still too short. Hello,wasp-killer scented Aqua Net! Okay, so I stood on the chair on this side. Blast! And, now it's on my arms, my hair, my face, and in my eyes. Good times.

Damn wasps - they are making me insane. I can only imagine what the neighbors who can see into our back yard are thinking if they are looking out. "Oh, look at crazy white lady. She spray and duck, spray and duck. Why she keep getting spray in face?" (Um, yeah, they're Asian - and yes, I already know I'm going to Hell.)

The pigeons are equally annoying. Well, actually they're worse - their incessant cooing is maddening and they poop everywhere. They love our roof. And those stupid decorative crevices. I toss rocks at them when I see them on the roof. But their arch enemy really is Jim. He goes for the big guns. He gets the hose! He's been known to sneak out at dusk and blast the suckers right out of their nests. Then he fist pumps like he has taken down the Taliban. This is what they do to us. They make us crazy. They make us warriors. Defenders of our homeland.

Be warned, wasps and pigeons: we are armed and dangerous, and a little loony. It's on! Yessiree. It. Is. On.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Does size matter?

The concept of whether size matters is always associated with men. But, really, I think women are more concerned about size. Their size. Their clothes size.

Yesterday, the female radio host of the morning program I listen to in the car reported on a story about Kirstie Alley. Kirstie claims that she has lost so much weight from her stint on Dancing with the Stars, that she went from being a size 14 to now being a size 4. No doubt she has lost weight (she claims 100 pounds - kudos to her; that is fantastic) but I've seen pictures of her lately and she doesn't look like a size 4. Which is EXACTLY what the radio host said! Is she smaller? Yes. Is she smaller than a 14? Yes. Is she a size 4? No. I know, I know: the camera adds pounds. Well, in her case, it's adding dress sizes too! She looks more like an 8 or a 10. Which are still sizes to be proud of, I might add!

So later in the day, I was shopping. And I realized that in my closet, I have clothes in sizes Small, Medium and Large and skirts and pants in sizes 6, 8 and 10. They all fit right now. In fact, while shopping, I bought a sweater at Macy's in size Small, then bought one in J.Jill in size Medium, then tried one on at another store in size Large that was too tight!!

Size matters. If you want to get dressed in the morning it does. But why are we so size obsessed? Well, why are we Women so size obsessed? Why does Kirstie Alley feel compelled to tell us her size and to pick one that is so small? And, why do we care what our size is or what other women's sizes are? No one can see the labels!!! Trust me, I love that I have a couple of skirts in my closet in a size 6! I'm also perfectly happy with my size 8 clothes. But, it does bum me out that when I shop in J. Crew, I have to buy size 10 pants.

It makes shopping so much more of a challenge. I like the challenge of finding a bargain. I don't like the challenge of guessing what size I am in every brand! I really hate HAVING to try clothes on at the store - it's a hassle and it takes too much time (and the lighting is always bad!). I envy my husband. When he needs pants, he goes to the rack, picks out a pair based on his waist and inseam measurements and he's done. It's not fair.

Funny, I remember being excited about  buying new clothes in smaller sizes when I lost a lot of weight last year. I still enjoy being smaller, but I still can't go in and just buy right off the rack (and speaking of racks - shirt and bra sizes are a whole other issue since I'm a woman who has breasts larger than the barely-there A-cup models for whom clothes are designed - that's a whole other blog!). So, yeah, I guess size matters. I'm just not sure why.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Clearly I'm on a grammar kick today . . .

New favorite line from a song:

"I'd rather be a comma than a full stop"

          -- Every Teardrop is a Waterfall by ColdPlay

My life in parentheses . . .

One of my favorite writers is Jenn Lancaster. She primarily writes non-fiction accounts of her own life. Her books are hilarious. She inspires me. She is snarky. I want to be her friend. Stalking inclinations aside, one key element to her writing is her use of footnotes. At times, her paragraphs are so heavily footnoted, it makes for challenging reading. But mostly, the footnotes are just funny. I look at footnotes and parentheses in much the same way. And, I think I actually talk in parentheses. Is that possible? 
According to, “Parenthesis” (plural: parentheses) (look, see, here I go) is defined as: “a qualifying, explanatory, or appositive word, phrase, clause, or sentence that interrupts a syntactic construction without otherwise affecting it.” Well, according to that, the comma is a mightier grammatical tool. The comma says, pause and take this in; the parenthesis says, here’s a little something, but it’s not necessary for you to retain this info. Hmm. I really think that the words inside the parentheses really deserve more attention than their definition entitles them to (I know -- ending a sentence with a preposition is wrong but we’re only working on one grammar problem today). I think of them as little asides. Like here’s the main thought (and here’s a little something extra). And that’s how I look at the way I speak, the way I write and the way I live. 
Hence: (A) musings. (A) for Ann's musings and amusing musings (clearly I do find my thoughts to be humorus). 
Musings are a big part of my day, though. I think I am just so inundated with so much information from TV and the internet (admittedly, I do watch a lot of TV. Too much. Don’t judge.) that I find myself questioning aloud (or in my head, but that’s pretty much aloud to me) so many things: choices people make, choices celebrities make, choices government makes (I’m fairly apolitical, but really, sometimes politicians deserve questioning). You get the drift, right?
So, this is my outlet. I’m giving my husband a break. He hears my musings daily. He’s a saint. 
Clearly, you can see that I speak and write in parenthetical expressions. And as I said, I think I live in parentheses sometimes too. Don’t we all, really? There’s the life we present to the world (and then there’s the life we save for ourselves). Or vice versa, the life we save for ourselves (and the life we show the world). Personas, per se. I don’t think my “public” life (ha - like I’m famous - NOT) is vastly different from my personal life. Although, I do swear a lot (and I mean it: A. LOT.) in my personal life (just ask my husband; if he never heard the word “fuck” before he met me, well, he’s become well-versed in its many uses in the last 13 years -- that’s a tale for another day!), in public, I rarely swear. But, I think I am “aware” (I use air quotes a lot too, just a warning) of my surroundings and act accordingly. Sometimes. For me, parentheses in speech and writing are a way of stretching out what I’m saying. In life, they’re a way of adding to its flavor. A way to keep the good going and a way to comment on the bad (and that’s when what’s in the parentheses doesn’t need to be retained).