tiaras optional

"My only argument is with those who do not view the world as cynically as I do." Michael Korda

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Shoe Drama

This is going to be a completely frivolous post, so stop reading right now if you don’t want to hear about shoes and shopping and whining. Yesterday, I had the day off from work. (I have a ridiculous amount of vacation time that I need to use before the end of the year. This is the catch-22 of my job: lots of time off, yet it’s extremely difficult for me to take that time off.) I originally had plans to get some important things done, but they fell through early in the morning (I’ll spare you a long boring story about ID documents). So I decided to do a little shopping. I have this rule I like to follow this time of year: I try to only buy xmas presents and not buy anything for myself from Thanksgiving until Dec. 26. I’ve already broken the rule by shopping this weekend, but I was able to justify that somewhat because I was using a gift certificate (which only covered about 40% of what I bought, but who’s counting?). I am in the market for the perfect pair of boots. I have this image of these boots in my mind, but I’m not sure they really exist. I think about them a lot and how my life would be so much better if I just had this pair of boots. I would be thinner, taller, hotter, and chicer. Sadly, this pair of boots probably doesn’t exist, but I have a dream. I figured I could break my rule if I found them, because really, I would be helping myself by not having to fixate on these boots and once I have the boots, things will be so great that I should be able to focus on important things, like saving the world (these will be magical boots).

I had no luck with the boots, but that’s ok, because (1) the search continues, and (2) I found loads of other shoes. Lord Merlin accompanied me on this journey, and he was all about the adorable Prada Mary Janes that I found at Loehmann’s for a mere fraction of their original cost. In the end, I decided against them because they were coral colored and wouldn’t go with anything I own, and even though I love pink, coral is probably my least favorite shade of pink, and really, did I love love love these shoes, or was I just excited because they were Prada (for the record, they were really adorable)? But I did buy the coolest black Mary Janes, with ivory trim and an ivory rosette on the clasp. Yes, they are four inch heels and I walk like a little old lady with bound feet in them, but who cares? They’re just the cutest things ever. And I found on the clearance rack a pair of blue tweed Mary Janes (you may be detecting a theme here) with blue suede bows on the toes. They’re amazing and have a total 40s vibe, which is kind of what I have been working lately. When I got them home, I realized that they would look terrific with this great blue velvet ruffled skirt that I bought a few weeks ago. Fabulous! I also bought a pair of stop-gap boots. They are not quite the boots of my dreams, but they were cheap and they will do nicely while I continue the search. I made it home without buying a single present for anyone else. (Maybe someone would like the pink version of the blue tweed shoes. Oh no wait, that would be me.) I feel bad, because I should have bought a toy to bring to the happy hour tonight, but I didn’t realize there was going to be a toy drive. (I will totally make up for this in the near future.)

All was well until I tried to get dressed this morning. I was all set to wear the new blue skirt/new blue shoes combo. I put the shoes on and started to buckle the clasps. Then I realized something was wrong. Looking down at my feet, the shoes appeared to be asymmetrical. The left strap in sewn onto the shoe a good half inch higher than the right one. I suppose this is a minor thing, but when I look down at my shoes, they just don’t look right. I took the skirt off and hung it back up (I’m lying; I threw it on my dresser in a fit of pique) and tossed the shoes back onto the floor. I’m hoping they have another pair in my size so I can exchange them, but what if they don’t? Do I just live with this rather minor defect because the shoes are so wonderful? Or do I take them back and get them in pink?

Monday, November 28, 2005

Long Weekend

Despite some anxiety on my part, Thanksgiving wasn’t too bad this year. Lord Kissington and I made it through two dinners with no drama. I had some really amazing pumpkin pie. I was promised leftovers of said pie, but somehow it all got eaten before it ever made it to my place.

I went on a movie kick for the holidays. Wednesday night, we saw Walk the Line. It’s pretty good, but it’s a standard biopic, and the story drags a bit when it’s not about the music. That said, Joaquin Phoenix is amazing and although he doesn’t sound exactly like Johnny Cash, it’s passable.

Before the two dinners on Thursday, we saw Pride and Prejudice. I wasn’t sure if I would like it, since it is one of my favorite books, and I tend to not like adaptations of books I love, but it was excellent. It’s set in 1797, the year the book was written. It wasn’t published until around 1817, and previous adaptations have been set in that time period, the Regency era. It’s only 20 years, but it makes a difference. Apparently, the Jane Austen Society is up in arms about the film being a “sexed-up” version of the book. It’s really not, though. Someone took offense at a scene of a pig with engorged balls. Ummh, it’s the country. You see things like that all the time. Life at the time wasn’t all fancy dresses and dances.

On Friday, I went by myself to see Rent. I hadn’t seen the show, and I didn’t know much about it, other than that it was loosely based on the opera La Boheme, except that everyone has HIV instead of TB. Anyway, I loved it. It was incredibly moving. And I even liked the music (disclaimer: I heart show tunes in a big way, even of the rock opera variety, so this isn’t exactly a shocker.). Right after I left the theater, I bought the soundtrack. Unfortunately, what I bought is only “highlights” from the soundtrack and doesn’t have all the songs. There is a complete version, but they didn’t have it at Borders (totes bitter).

(The downside to all this movie viewing was having to see the trailer for Memoirs of a Geisha three more times (that brings me to approximately 12). This film looks so awful. The preview is just painful. I grind my teeth every time I have to see it.)

I didn’t do much else the rest of the weekend. Slept a lot. Worked out a few times. Ate a ton (what can I say, it was really cold and my body is preparing for the long winter). Yesterday, we ventured out to the mall, which was just a bad bad idea. I wasn’t even xmas shopping yet. I considered buying a really adorable velvet jacket at Anthropologie, but the thing had 20 buttons and I could only get two of them open. I couldn’t justify spending $148 on a jacket that I might never be able to get into. It was cute though.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving, Kids

I’m sure everyone else in the world has left work already, but I am still here, despite the fact that we “closed” at 2 p.m. Sigh. Since I’m not traveling (I generally refuse to travel for Thanksgiving; it’s just not worth the hassle.), it’s not like I have to be anywhere this afternoon. And I am hoping to see a movie after work, so it makes sense to just stay downtown. I am going to go out and eat a big dinner tonight to try to prepare my stomach for eating two Thanksgiving dinners tomorrow. Ugh. Yes, I know I could just eat small portions and politely refuse seconds (my preferred course of action, seeing as I am on this whole healthy eating/fitness kick), but then I run the risk of offending one or the other of my divorced parents. If I eat too much at Dad’s, Mom will surely take it personally. (Never mind that she is not cooking the second dinner—my godmother and her husband are—she will still take it personally.) “I guess you ate a lot at your father’s?” she is likely to say (in a martyr-ish tone). Luckily, Lord Kissington is positively gleeful at the prospect of two dinners, and I’m hoping he will eat enough for both of us. Have I mentioned that Thanksgiving is not exactly my favorite holiday? It’s all the stress of Christmas, with none of the fun presents.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

New Neighbors?

Angelina Jolie (and Brad Pitt) are said to be looking to buy a house in DC. It’s like Lord Kissington’s birthday wish is finally going to come true.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Sicky McSickerson

I am sick again. Or maybe this is just a relapse of what I had last weekend? I went to bed at 9 last night, slept 9.5 hours, and woke up still feeling like crap. Come on, immune system, time to start working.

I think I am going to crawl home and curl up with the fifth Harry Potter, which I am finally getting around to reading after seeing the latest movie on Friday night (yes, that was dorky, but not quite as dorky as seeing it at midnight on Thursday. Not that there is anything wrong with being a dork. I'm not one to talk, you know.).

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Thoughts for Thursday

1. It’s cold outside. Really fucking cold. I love winter and cold weather, but my body just can’t seem to adjust when the temperature goes from 70 degrees to 40 degrees in 24 hours.

2. re: Lost. I know last night’s episode was supposed to show us just how HARD it’s been for the tailies and thus make Ana Lucia more sympathetic, but you know what, I still hate her. And dude, she totally killed poor misunderstood ballerina Shannon. What’s up with that? Sayid is so going to make her sorry.

3. I tend to think of DC as being a not terribly chic town, and so I dawdled about checking out the Stella McCartney collection at H&M. My bad. All they have left are a few keychains. Seriously, when did everyone get so hip?

4. I am off from work tomorrow. Yay. I have to go the DMV. Boo.

5. I am now committed to two Thanksgiving dinners. That is a lot of turkey. I hope I am not expected to eat a full dinner at both. Usually, I just fill up on wine and mashed potatoes. Yum.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

I’ll Have the Eggs Benedict, with a Side of Passive Aggression

My mother is basically a very nice person, but she has certain, shall we say, neurotic tendencies. Most of the time, we get along pretty well, although her neuroses tend to drive me completely nuts (and I can even relate, because I am hardly neurosis-free). But lately, the wedding seems to have driven her over the edge. (Some background: my grandfather died last year, after a brief illness. Since then, my grandmother has been living with my mother. My grandmother has extreme short-term memory loss. It’s not Alzheimer’s, but it might as well be. The strain of living with my grandmother has certainly contributed to my mother’s anxiety, but the basis for this was there long before.)

Here is a typical conversation with my mother.

Mom: I really wish you were getting married in November.
Me: (heavy sigh) Yes, I know, Mom, but remember, there were a bunch of reasons that wouldn’t work.
Mom: Yes. I just wish it were sooner rather than later, because I’m afraid I’ll die before the wedding.

My mother is not sick. She has some annoying but far from life-threatening chronic health issues, but she does not have any major illnesses. She is a hypochondriac. She visits her internist at least once a month for various complaints. Any mysterious ache or pain that the average person would assume is just a muscle ache or something minor is a heart attack, a blood clot, or the first stages of cancer to my mother. Last week, she visited her doctor for mysterious pains in her legs. She’s had these pains for a couple of years now, and she periodically decides that the pains mean that she has a blood clots in her leg. I have pointed out to her that she’s had these pains forever, and a blood clot is a fast-moving sort of thing, not something that takes a year or two to develop, but she is not interested in hearing that. She convinced the physician’s assistant at her doctor’s office that she should have a full-body scan. Shockingly, the results were totally negative.

On Sunday, I had brunch with her, and I pretty much lost it. She hassled me about not losing too much weight. I’ve lost 4 pounds; this isn’t exactly anorexia we’re dealing with here. I tried to explain to her that my recent fitness kick is more about healthy living than about weight. I am a somewhat higher risk of cancer and osteoporosis than average (because of family history), and I am trying to do as much as I can to counter those risks. Her response: “Well, I don’t think you need to worry about osteoporosis so much. You’re not delicately boned like my side of the family. Your father’s family is much sturdier.” Ouch.

After brunch, I went to her house so I could see the outfit she is thinking about wearing to the wedding. (She has spent way more time obsessing over her outfit than I did over my dress, and I’m the bride, for pete’s sake.)

Mom: Do you think these jeans look ok?
Me: Yes, they look good.
Mom: Oh good. Because these are relaxed fit. I also have regular fit, but I don’t think they fit as well since I gained two pounds. [Note: She weighs approximately 103 pounds.]
Me: Two pounds? Cry me a river, Mom.
Mom: Well, I didn’t mind it really, because it’s pretty unusual for dying people to gain weight.

I honestly don’t know what to do with her. How do you deal with someone who is basically a character from a Woody Allen film?

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Register This

As you may have gathered from previous posts, I am not exactly loving the whole wedding planning process. I find it tedious at best and severely anxiety-provoking at worst. But there is one part that is actually really fun: the registry list. This is where I get to be greedy greedy greedy and it’s considered socially acceptable. I tried to be rather modest at first. I started a registry at Crate and Barrel, and I only added a few things. But whenever I would go back to the list, I would get a message saying “You have only 10 items left on your list! Add more! Add more! Add more!” (or something like that.) It’s all a vicious cycle. I’ve always wanted an asparagus steamer (I love asparagus, but it’s a pain to cook properly without a specially shaped steamer), so I added that to the list. But then I realized that I couldn’t live without the matching asparagus tongs, and the white china asparagus plate, which actually looks like asparagus stalks (so adorable). I mean, if you’re going to have asparagus, you must as well go all out. This is a very dangerous slippery slope.

I have been trying to turn over a new leaf and be less snarky*, but then I see something like this picture of Sienna Miller, and I just can’t help myself. Did she actually look in the mirror and think, “Wow, I look hot. And who cares if this top is pushing my boobs down to my waist?” I simply cannot imagine what goes through her head. Is her on-again/off-again relationship with Jude so rough that it’s actually killing brain cells? (So much for that new leaf thing.)

*Because of some misguided notion that a bitter, sarcastic person can never be truly happy. I don’t know if I believe this, because really, without the snarkiness, I would be exceptionally dull, and no one will want to hang out with me, and how can I be happy if I have no friends?

Monday, November 14, 2005

Your Future Dream Is a Shopping Scheme

1. In the “bad” column, I was sick sick sick all weekend, and I only made it to one of the showers, the baby one. I figured my ailing body could handle tea and scones for a couple of hours. I may have overdone it on the clotted cream though. (Although the name may sound disgusting, it is totally delish.) I had to skip the wedding shower/bachelorette party since I was I figured heavy drinking was probably not the best road to recovery.

2. In the “good” column, Kate Bush has put out her first new album in 12 years. Apparently, she is such a perfectionist that it takes her ages to get each track right. She is amazingly talented, so I can’t begrudge her perfectionism, but 12 years is an awfully long time to wait, Kate. (I have not bought the album yet, what with not really getting out of the house much and all this weekend.)

3. Last night, I watched The Filth and the Fury, a documentary about the Sex Pistols, which was pretty good. Interesting bits: Johnny Rotten breaking down when he talks about Sid Vicious’ downward spiral, and how he wished he could have saved him. As Rotten says, “All’s I can tell you is I could take on England, but I couldn't take on one heroin addict.” (But really, what can you do to save someone who has no interest in being saved?) Steve Jones saying “I listened to Malcolm [McClaren]. I shouldn’t have done that.” The film is directed by Julien Temple, who directed The Great Rock and Roll Swindle, the original Pistols "documentary," which is all McClaren’s point of view. He apparently squandered the Pistols’ money on this project, which was designed to showcase his “genius.” (The band members didn’t see any profits until they took McClaren to court in the late 80s). Maybe Temple felt bad about his involvement with the first film and wanted to give the other side of the story?

I listed to Never Mind the Bullocks on my way to work this morning, and it still holds up, but it got me really riled up and I arrived at work wanting to snarl at everyone. Probably not the best way to start the week. (Totally reminiscing about my teenage crush on the pimply, funny-looking, but charismatic Rotten.)

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Shower Gifts

Yesterday, I took the day off from work. I have a lot of vacation time that I need to use or lose before the end of the year. I had big plans for running errands, cleaning the apartment, and lots of other things yesterday, but most of them didn’t happen. This Saturday, I will be attending a baby shower and then a wedding shower (not for the same person. Not that I would judge or anything, but just because you’re knocked up at your wedding, I have to get you two gifts?). So my main objective was to buy presents for these showers. (Next objective will be surviving two back-to-back showers.) The baby gift was no problem, but the wedding one was much more of a pain. I spent nearly an hour at Neiman Marcus trying to buy something off the damn registry list. I was the only customer in the bridal section, and they have about five employees working, and it still took forever. At least they did a lovely wrapping job. That was so frustrating that I came home and sat on the couch for hours. I did manage to watch Never Been Kissed. Why didn’t I have any teachers who looked like Michael Vartan in high school? Oh yeah, I went to private school, and the teachers were overwhelmingly female and not hot.

A friend sent me some interesting links from the Lillian Vernon catalog, and I found a few really necessary items:

1. The trompe l’oeil dog’s dining table. What every discerning dog needs.

2. The silver-plated tabletop toothpick holder (it’s monogrammable!). Because I really want to encourage my dinner guests to pick their teeth at the table.

3. The walnut golf ball cabinet. I had no idea that people collected golf balls, but if they do, this is clearly the place to put them

The ladies whose showers I am attending this weekend are just lucky that I didn’t know about these items yesterday.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Bullish for Banville

I offer my heartfelt congratulations to John Banville, the recipient of this year’s Booker Prize for his novel The Sea. Banville is apparently considered a somewhat controversial choice, as not everyone loves his new novel, and some see it a victory of style over substance. I say, whatever. I’ve suffered through several Booker Prize-winning novels that left me entirely cold, and I’m delighted that one of my favorite writers has taken the prize. In addition to being a novelist, Banville is also a critic (literary editor of the Irish Times), and he’s certainly earned some enemies with his take-no-prisoners style, including a devastating review of Ian McEwen’s generally lauded latest novel Saturday, which Banville called a “dismayingly bad book.” Ouch. But, hey, that’s what critics do. The Sea was called “a crashing disappointment” by David Grylls in the Sunday Times of London and “a chilly, desiccated and pompously written book” by Michiko Kakutani in the New York Times. Double ouch. I have not yet read The Sea, but I am anxiously awaiting the end of my self-imposed moratorium on book-buying (no more purchases until I make a dent in my to-read pile) so I can dig into it. If my praise has at all piqued your curiosity, I urge you to check out some of his earlier works, including The Book of Evidence, Ghosts, and The Newton Letter. (I should add that a bit of my partiality toward Banville may come from the fact that he hails from Wexford, Ireland, the place where much of my family hails from and still lives, and where I spent many happy summers in my childhood. Nothing wrong with rooting for the hometown boy, is there?)


The other day I needed to take a trip to Filene’s Basement to buy some tights (no point in paying full price for such a generic item, right?), so I walked over to what used to be called the Shops at National Place. Maybe it’s still called that, but they have made a lot of changes. The entrance looked totally different. I went in through what seemed to be the door I usually use, but this only led to the food court, and I couldn’t find a way to get to the other side of the building. I wandered around the food court aimlessly, and started remembering when I worked down the street the summer between my junior and senior years of high school. I used to eat lunch in this food court every day with my co-worker Maggie and Lord Merlin, who was working down the street at the time. Most days, I would get dumplings and a coke from the Chinese place, because it cost only 2 bucks and I was more interested in using my money for really important things, like Minor Threat t-shirts and import 12-inch dance remixes. I had a crush on a guy who worked at my office and a crush on another guy who was good friends with the bass player in one of my favorite bands. As is the case with probably most teen crushes, neither of these went anywhere.

Fast forward to adulthood, and crush number 2 rather unexpectedly returns to my life. We end up dating for a couple of months, because well, I was in a weird place in my life, and since I’d had a crush on him years before, I actually thought this could be the basis for a relationship. We had some fun and I even got to hang out with the above-mentioned bass player, but the relationship quickly imploded. So, I learned a valuable lesson: the reasons you had a crush on someone at 16 don’t necessarily still count when you are 30. Proximity to bass players turned out to not be quite as exciting as I had imagined it would be at 16. And the guy himself turned to not quite live up to my 16-year-old expectations. Sigh. (There is a happy ending, for me at least. I met Lord Kissington not long after the relationship imploded, and we started going out a few months later.)

Monday, November 07, 2005

I Like Cake

Friday night, I decided to stay home and do laundry, since I had reached a pretty desperate state and was searching in the depths of my closet for anything clean to wear. I estimate that it had been five weeks since I last did laundry. This is just bad, bad, bad. Laundry seemed to take forever, but at least I was able to go to the gym while my clothes were drying. I watched the Caps game, and I almost fell off the elliptical machine when they scored their second goal. Note to self: no matter how excited you are, it is just not a good idea to try to jump up and down on the gym equipment. When I finally finished my laundry and hung it all over the apartment to dry, Lord Merlin came over and we watched Maid in Manhattan, which was ok and not as dumb as I expected it to be. That Ralph Fiennes sure is pretty, but I prefer him with a British accent.

On Saturday, Lord Kissington and I made an early morning trip to Target (I consider 11 a.m. to be early morning on the weekends), because we had to be at a birthday party at noon (!). I picked up more workout clothes and two supercute Isaac Mizrahi shoes, herringbone tweed flats and velvet strappy wedge things. I can’t really walk in the latter pair, but they are so adorable that I just don’t care.

The birthday party was for the three-year-old daughter of a friend. She was just not into it at all. When I was three, I would have been all over it. You’re the center of attention, you get a huge cake, and people give you all sorts of cool presents. She turned her nose up at the Virginia Woolf cloth doll (courtesy of the Professor and Mary Ann), and she wouldn’t even blow out the candle on her cake. Those of us without children were in the minority among the guests, and we mostly hung out on the deck drinking beer. I decided to listen to what my body was telling (per my yoga teacher’s instructions of last week), and after listening very carefully, I discovered that I have a serious cake deficiency. I remedied that by eating two large pieces of cake with ice cream. This was on top of three kinds of chili (the three year old’s dad is quite a cook) and three beers. So I spent the rest of the day feeling a bit sick to my stomach. It was totally worth it though; that was some of the best birthday cake I’ve ever had.

I thought I was going to have to take my grandmother to church in the afternoon (5:30 Mass), but she decided she didn’t feel up to going so I was off the hook (and I didn’t have to break my tradition of only attending Mass for weddings and funerals). My mother called me and wanted me to try to convince her to go. Really, I am the last person anyone would listen to about attending church, seeing as I never go. I had to attend a family dinner, which was, well, pretty awful. I barely escaped in time to go meet Lord Kissington, bryc3, Baby, and a few others at the Cat. Sadly, even an endless supply of Budweiser wasn’t doing it for me, and I went home pretty early.

I dragged myself out of bed early on Sunday and made it to yoga class with Mary Ann. It pretty much kicked my ass. I haven’t done backbends in ages. But I felt good afterward. Mary Ann and I then had tea and discussed how insane wedding stuff can make you (ok, me). Later in the afternoon, Lord Kissington and I went to see Good Night, and Good Luck. We almost didn’t make it since we were walking, and the Uptown is a bit of a hike from our place. I was determined though, and I dragged poor Kissington on the fastest walk ever, and we made it with five minutes to spare. The film is really good. David Strathairn gives an understated and subtle, but amazing performance. Clooney’s acting is pretty good, and he has definitely proven himself to be an inventive and interesting director. I think I like his first film Confessions of a Dangerous Mind a little bit better, but I was still extremely impressed with Good Night, and Good Luck.

After the movie, I went home and worked out. I completely wore myself out and I got into bed at 9:30. This is unheard of. I usually suffer from chronic insomnia. I actually got up this morning without feeling grumpy and tired. Sadly, there are not enough hours in the day outside of work for me to wear myself out everyday.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Just Say No

On my walk to work this morning, I witnessed several fashion don’t’s that just had me screaming “just say no to bad fashion.” A rundown of the offenders:

1. Multiple flip-flop wearers. Yes, I realize we are having a warm week, but it is November and it’s just time to put the flip-flops away until Spring. Besides, you look ridiculous in a suit and flip-flops.

2. Uggs and business attire. I won’t even get into how over the Ugg trend should be, but why would you ruin that cute little work outfit by pairing it with Uggs? If you want comfortable shoes for your commute to work, buy some cute flats.

3. Short-sleeved shirts with ties. Every time I see a man sporting this look, I hope that he’s just doing as a misguided attempt at “geek chic.” Unfortunately, this is never the case. Ties go with long-sleeved shirts, gentlemen. Let’s lose the short-sleeved dress shirts entirely.

4. Knee socks. You could maybe just get away with this if they were some kind of crazy colored or patterned knee socks, because then it might complement a kooky outfit or something. Even then, it would be only borderline acceptable. But the young woman I saw this morning was wearing brown knee socks. I can only assume that she was acting out some naughty Catholic schoolgirl fantasy, but really, how is that appropriate for the workplace?

Please, can’t we all just say no to bad taste?

Thursday, November 03, 2005

This Is My, Ummh, Body

My new favorite blog, Dealing in Subterfuges, had a really interesting about how people portray their bodies on their blog (this is way oversimplifying her post, but I’m not at my most coherent today). I began to think about this, and I realized that I have revealed very little about my physical self, other than my desire to lose a few pounds and the fact that I do not weigh 224 pounds. I don’t have a photo of myself on my blog. Obviously, I’m not totally anonymous, but not having a photo keeps me from being completely out there. I think there are one or two photos of me floating around on other people’s blogs from blogger happy hours, but you would really have to search for them, and if I’m too lazy to do that, it’s unlikely the casual reader will bother. I do have photos on my Friendster and Myspace profiles. It seems kind of pointless not to have them, and it helps people recognize my profiles (like my extremely unusual name doesn’t give it away). And the photo I have on both profiles is a really good one, like one of my favorite photos ever, so it would be cruel not to share it with the world (sadly, said photo has brought me some requests for nude pics of myself. Seeing as about 30% of the people on Myspace have already posted scantily clad pics, I can’t imagine why you would need to see mine.). But on the blog, I suppose I want it just to be about the words.

I can’t say that I have made an effort not to write about my appearance; for the most part, it just hasn’t come up except in the context of my working out a lot recently. For the record, my physical appearance is what you could term “reasonable attractive.” This sounds like I am hedging my bets, but I’m trying to be honest and fair here. I think I’m decent looking. So does my mom. And the guy I’m marrying. But really, what else can they say? Some people call me “hot”; other people are left cold by me. Beauty is so subjective. Some enjoy the big-mouthed juggsiness of a Jessica Simpson, while others prefer the rather more subtle attractions of a Natalie Portman (you can put me firmly in the latter camp). I am:

--short (5’3)
--quite fair-skinned (skin cancer just waiting to happen, so I wear tons of sunscreen)
blue eyed (like my skin, totally sensitive to light; thanks so much, pasty Northern European ancestors)
--hair is reddish-brown (much more brown at the moment, since I have been lazy about getting it done recently) and curly (I spend a lot of time battling it, particularly in the summer months)
--I have a fairly small frame, my weight is normal and I’m apparently not overweight, although I am not happy with it and have been taking steps to change it (down several pounds already, so that’s actually going well). I was kind of a skinny bobble head type a few years back, so I am still getting used to not being that thin (and no doubt looking much healthier, but it’s hard to break the habit of adhering to the Duchess of Windsor’s code: “You can never be too rich or too thin.”)
--celebrities I have sometimes been told I look like: Elizabeth Taylor, Andie MacDowell, and Vivien Leigh (yes, I realize that these women don’t really look alike. And I don’t necessarily look like any of them. Of the three, I would most like to look like Vivien Leigh.)

So, that’s me in a nutshell. But it’s a vague nutshell. How many shortish, fair, blue-eyed brunettes do you pass on the street every day? I could be anyone. I tend to be a little obsessed with my appearance in real life (e.g., spending way too much time looking at myself in the mirror and asking Lord Kissington a lot of really annoying questions like “Does my upper lip look smaller to you?” or “Do I have more eyelashes on my right eye?”), and I suppose I have embraced my blog as a place where my appearance doesn’t matter. I could be typing this wearing full makeup and a tiara, or I could be unwashed and wearing a bathrobe (neither at the moment, but you’ll never know for sure, will you?). Ultimately, I would like to be known for what I do or produce or create, not what I look like, but it’s hard to let go of the physical.

(This is not me. This is not even a person. Just in case you couldn't tell.)

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Bad Wires, Sad Hobos, and Temptation in the Form of Chocolate

Every morning, I cross a street near my office. Apparently, some electrical work needs to be done on this street. Next to a manhole cover, several yellow arrows have been painted and, in big block letters, are the words “BAD WIRE.” They have been there for at least three months. As I walk across them every day, I wonder why this hasn’t been fixed yet, and I wonder why I walk over it every day. I remember the series of manhole explosions from a couple of years back. They were mostly in Georgetown, but one happened right outside my office and a Pepco worker was seriously injured. Yet every day I pass over this spot and think “Hmmh. I probably shouldn’t be walking here.” I am so going to get blown up.

My regular readers (all six of you) know how much I loathe Sienna Miller (for example, see yesterday’s post). Maybe it’s just jealousy. She’s all over the place, getting good movie roles, and dating famous men. But really, my issue is that she is constantly held up by fashion magazines and those in the “know” as a fashion icon. I refuse to accept this. Most of the time, she looks like a child whose mother forgot to make them a Halloween costume, so they had to throw together a hobo outfit at the last minute (you know, the sad looking kid you give extra candy to, because you feel so bad about their lousy costume). For an example of Sienna’s unique style, click here. With the hat and the leggings, this outfit is eerily reminiscent of the costume worn by the advanced jazz class students at my 1982 dance recital (I was taking ballet at the time and was sporting a lovely tutu embellished with hot pink and lime green satin. It was the 80s, what can I say?) All Sienna is missing are the awful white jazz shoes and some mean jazz hands. If this is what passes for a fashion icon these days, Audrey Hepburn most be rolling over in her grave.

I spent all morning avoiding the leftover Halloween candy in the kitchen, but come lunchtime, I just couldn’t help myself and I ate a Reese’s. Luckily, the other vultures in my office have polished off all the good candy and left behind all the crap I don’t like, taking away any further temptation. Thanks, guys.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Life on Another Continent

Earlier this year, my dear friend the Redhead moved to another country, far far away. She has been an amazing friend for the past five years. Among the quirks we share is an obsession with the Tudor dynasty. In her new home, the Redhead visited a past life regressionist psychic who looked at a picture of the two of us and told her we were ladies in waiting to Queen Anne Boleyn. That would explain a lot of things.

Because of the time difference, we don’t get to talk much, but we chatted for a while on IM yesterday. Our conversation made me realize how much I miss her. She is having a great time in her new adventure, but she is a great sounding-board, and I could really use her right now as I go through all this wedding crap. Among the highlights of our conversation:

1. Underwear is a serious issue these days. Her new home is not meeting her underwear needs.

the Redhead says: i am so psyched to shop in american stores for a decent pair of underwear i could die.
Lady Tiara says: bad underwear in asia?
The Redhead says: the worst. it’s so cheap and tacky. even the expensive stuff.
The Redhead says: either granny or shit with sequins. that’s it.
Lady Tiara says: ugh
The Redhead says: yeah. there are no clean-scrubbed wasps here, so no cute-but-sensible underwear.
The Redhead says: just bimbo gear or stuff for aunties

2. McDonalds. Apparently, the local McDonalds will deliver 24 hours a day. However, they have discontinued the ¼ pounder. This just doesn’t make any sense.

3. Jude Law and Sienna Miller

Lady Tiara says: jude law is so over
The Redhead says: jude law IS so over
The Redhead says: the nanny thing killed him
The Redhead says: only after you've been on top for a long time can you pull that stuff
Lady Tiara says: i mean, I’d probably still do him, because I’m not really looking for a meaningful relationship with him, but my ardor has cooled somewhat
Lady Tiara says: i actually dislike him more for dating sienna miller, who i totally despise
Lady Tiara says: “fashion icon” my ass
The Redhead says: sienna sucks

4. Dolphins. We got onto the topic of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, which we both loved, and she typed the words to the Dolphin song, which was then stuck in my head for the rest of the day. That’s ok. I like the song. “So long and thanks for all the fish.”

5. Baby terror.

Lady Tiara says: [Babies] cost a ton of money
The Redhead says: oh yes. so much money
Lady Tiara says: mama needs some new manolos, but baby is cramping her style
The Redhead says: hahhahahahah. love it!
Lady Tiara says: besides, i am terrified of children
Lady Tiara says: they look at me strangely
The Redhead says: children are nasty and sticky and mean
Lady Tiara says: i don’t relate to them at all
The Redhead says: me neither. even when i was one
The Redhead says: i wanted to be an adult
The Redhead says: adults had all the fun
The Redhead says: they could wear heels and go to parties

I think you can see why I miss her so much.