Boobs Are Never Lonely

I think it’s high time I talk about breasts in a public forum – it was only a matter of time really. It’s one of those topics of conversation that always comes up and kind of gets old, but before you know it boobs are new and exciting again. And that is because they are awesome. It’s pretty general knowledge that guys think so but I’m fairly certain that an honest survey of women would elicit the same answer. Personally, I LOVE my boobs. They’re perky and squishy and all around lovely. And there is something special about knowing that one is very slightly bigger than the other (I’m not telling you which).

Once, in middle school, all the guys in class were crowded around a picture of some model in a bikini and they wouldn’t let any of the girls in class see. So I promptly looked down my own top and told all the boys that I could look at boobs anytime I wanted to. So there. I was responsible for a lot of shocked stares that day, but what those guys, and more importantly all of the girls, learned was that they possessed orbs of power. Some more than others of course, we were like twelve.  By the simple expedient of having boobs girls find out they can command attention, influence thought,and inspire action. The “Why” of it isn’t so important. It could be because they are so protected and forbidden in Western cultures. Or some Freudian maternal complex. Or just because they’re fun, which they totally are. What I find more fascinating is the unimaginable usefulness of symmetrical fat receptacles conveniently available on one’s chest. I would like this bartender to make my drink first, I think I shall lean over. For whatever reason I’m always a little pleasantly amazed when these transparent sorts of tactics work, but I can’t argue with the outcome. I have never in my life paid for a flat tire repair, and I don’t intend to for as long as I can manage it.

It would be a lie to say that boobs are under appreciated because fashion and pop culture have ensured that they are not, but on a more individual basis I’m not sure the same is true. 355,671 breast augmentations were performed in the U.S. in 2008. That is a lot of unhappy boobs. I think a little objectification, under the right circumstances, would have gone a long way. Women should love their boobs as much as all the guys around them.

Please feel free to disagree with me. Or challenge me. I’m going to put my frilly bra back on.

You Kiss Badly

There has been a thorough appreciation of amazing kissers on this blog (since it’s inception almost a year ago, Happy Birthday HillaryofTroy!!) but a willful ignorance of those who, by all accounts, are physically incapable of kissing someone in a manner that is enjoyable. This is about the bad kissers of the world, with a little indignant ranting about their introduction into my life.

I had no idea how lucky I was. Up until about a year ago every guy I’d kissed seemed to know what he was about and this came to be my expectation from anyone with the audacity to invade my personal space- and my mouth. Which I still consider to be reasonable. Sadly, there have been a few guys lately who have fallen far short, and it made me think that these sad specimens of masculinity may be in the majority, running rampant and ruining otherwise lovely evenings. It turns out everyone has encountered bad kissers and yet I had no idea what I was in for with guys who licked my cheek, bit my lip (like really hard- there was a bruise), and made a good try at suffocating me with their tongue. Why would anyone find that fun?

To be fair I can’t be upset that no one has told these people what a menace to romantically inclined social interaction they are because I didn’t say anything either. I was selfishly concerned with the welfare of my face. And yet, I still don’t understand how one makes it to their twenties thinking that this sort of behavior is acceptable. There can’t be anyone who puts up with this kind of thing more than once (I’m a big fan of the “never ever answer your calls” method), which I’d think might lead to a little self-reflection, but apparently not. So, for those persons, when in doubt, keep it simple. You’ve just met this girl. For whatever reason she has tolerated your company for some period of time without excessive trips to the bathroom and people across the room she needs to speak to. Then again, that could be assuming a lot, perhaps you’ve thrown the nearest female up against a handy flat surface, in which case, I have to say from experience, that you really ought to make it worth her while. Either way, your fancy tricks are unappreciated as you are executing them very very badly to the chagrin of all involved. Thanks for your interest, please move on. I hate to fall back on cliches without a good excuse, or to call any well meaning gentleman a frog, but if the slime fits…

My future paramours are probably not going to read this warning, but I can only hope that the tide of my romantic luck will change for the better. And wish the talented kissers of the world will find you, too.

Happy kissing xxxx

No, thank you, Mr.Collins

In the ultimate confluence of Anglophilia, literary intelligentsia, and my magnetism for crazy I’ve come to the conclusion that the Mr.Collins’ of the world need to leave me the fuck alone. Much like Eliza Bennet in Pride & Prejudice I seem to have been chosen as the adequate parter in life, without my consent, and most assuredly without my interest, by men who are under the mistaken impression that I am up for grabs. Mr. Collins speaks to Elizabeth as though she should be grateful for his attentions and at one point actually tells her that she has “no reason to hope for another proposal” in her lifetime. That is precisely the way men talk to me about the romantic plans we are going to enjoy together. Excuse me – but I don’t remember consenting to the current conversation, much less any future endeavors with you and your insulting, misogynistic, and delusional views of the world in general, and me in particular. Lizzie may have been too polite to say it (and I am not without my share of courtesy) but enough is enough and that is simply not an appropriate way to speak to anyone. I’m all for confidence, but there is a fine line and a massive difference between attractive-in-a cocky-way and obnoxious-in-a-totally-out-of-line-way.

I can only surmise that Miss Jane Austen experienced something similar to have been inspired to write a book where not only is Mr. Collins soundly blown off, but is served with the massive “suck it!” that is Lizzie finding and falling in love with Mr. Darcy. For me Mr. Darcy doesn’t represent the paragon of romantic manliness (okay, maybe a little), but the hope that someone with a modicum of normal might one day pursue me. And perhaps he’ll have some English estates. Some have said that Austen’s famous novel presents unrealistic expectations of romantic love to the women of the world, but, first of all- it’s a novel, and second of all- there’s nothing wrong with wanting to be wanted for the right reasons….above all other things by the man of our dreams. God knows it’s better than settling for Mr. Collins’ on the off-chance that he’s all the universe has to offer you. Ick.

Collatiness and a Potato

As you may have inferred there is lots of collating fun to be had in the Writers’ Room. I can put pages in sequential order like nobody’s business. I’ve also reached new levels of exhaustion heretofore unknown. Granted there are other responsibilities associated with my illustrious position, but the most fascinating thing is to see what I’m capable of and what I choose to do when I’m tired to the point of mild hallucination.

First, let me explain this whole potato business. My mind barely registers weekends anymore because it is so constantly occupied by work, but I do make a point of going to the farmers’ market every Sunday to make sure I eat something green, or at least semi-nutritious. This last weekend I spied some especially scrumptious looking baby potatoes and got a bag full. As a result, when I wandered home the other night, after a 13 hour work day for the 2 hours of consciousness I get to myself before bedtime, the only thing of mine in the fridge was these potatoes (and some beer, but we don’t need to get into that right now). I could not have been happier. So I boiled them and slathered them in garlic and butter and salt and it was pretty much the most amazing thing that I’ve gotten to eat in weeks. The In N Out burger I ate in celebration of my replacement tooth (more permanent than the fragile placeholder I had after my front tooth literally fell out of my face) ran a close second. As you can imagine, I enjoyed these potatoes immensely and promptly fell asleep.

Before you start feeling sorry for me, and thinking that your life is so much better than one in which a potato features so highly, consider that the things I do all day to get so tired are something I wouldn’t dream of trading for anything. And not because “there’s a thousand other people out there that would like to take my place”, but because I love it. A lot. And for all that I’m functional on only the most basic of levels sometimes I never once consider wanting to do something else, or regret that the time I spend in my desk facing the wall could be better spent elsewhere, with people, having a social life. Ok, so I don’t think about it until I realize that the only stories I have to tell my friends are about collating, or involve a vocabulary they can’t get exited about. I updated the bible, and read at the table read, and approved art with the UPM after I took the cart to set!! (Yay?) The only thing that truly worries me right now is that this is going to be over in just a couple of months and there are no guarantees that I still get to be a fancy TV person after that. There is a very real possibility that come September I will be back to substitute teaching and all of this will be a lovely dream.

That would suck. I hope that doesn’t happen. I am so OK with my happy potatoes. You should go eat some.

Life is just like ‘Friends’

I’m in LA, with my lovely job that everyone is either jealous of or proud of me for getting,  and having odd run-ins with exceptionally strange strangers. What more could a type A, over-achieving, know-it-all, perky, smiley, girl like myself want out of life? If you answered anything other than an apartment – you are wrong. I need to not be homeless to complete my bubble of happiness.

And thus started the apartment search. I was met with the assurance that life is just like “Friends” and anytime you are in need of advice you should refer to their genius. Devout follower of TV that I am, this seemed like sound advice. You don’t stay on the air for a decade by spouting crap. Or at least without balancing out the crap with some applicable knowledge. Which leads us to Ugly Naked Guy. In one episode Ross decides that he wants Ugly Naked Guy’s apartment, and sees that it is going to take some wooing. He sends a muffin basket as an offer of peace and in hopes that their magic muffiny-ness will endear him enough to turn over his lease.

Lucky for me (and I really have been blessed with more than my fair share of luck in the past couple of months) I settled on an exceptionally lovely room with roommates that provided the licorice wands. And I can honestly say that the addition of candy to the negotiations drastically affected the outcome. Also, very happy to be on the receiving end.

Of course, now that I’ve managed to fulfill my professional and housing dreams my family’s first response was “Now all you need is a boyfriend!” Ugh. Can’t make them happy for trying. Unless my knight in shining armor rides his white horse onto the lot, bribes my boss, and brings a chai latte in his saddlebags to keep me awake, that part of my perfect life is going to have to wait until I work less. Or stop sleeping. Whichever. First order of business is making sure I have a bed when I move into my new place. Accomplishing that will be huge in my little universe. I’m not quite as co-dependent as Rachel – why the girl couldn’t just be thrilled with a job at Ralph Lauren is beyond me.

I have to say that one of the things I’m most excited about is my new HD DVR that is getting set up this weekend. I’ve never had a DVR before and, considering my television obsession, and my job, I’m fairly certain it’s going to change my life. I might possibly be more excited about it than the new sheets I got. And I really really like new sheets. Monica would totally approve.

I will think of Joey when I am convincing myself of the virtues of pizza as a food group. Somehow I expect it is going to feature prominently in my life as I become less interested in making something scrumptious and more obsessed with eating immediately.

My most Phoebe-esque moment of the recent past was the one day it was raining in L.A. I had been out of my car, with my uber-stylish umbrella for about 25 seconds when an SUV pulled over to the side of the road next to me, in the middle of Ventura Blvd., rolled down the window and said, “I love your umbrella. It looks good on you.” Thank you? The couple then pulled back into traffic. Is any umbrella really that cute?

I realize I didn’t mention any similarities to Chandler. I’m pretty sure that the longer that’s true the better I’m doing. But there are definitely worse ways to deal with life than watching Friends for a little inspiration.

Super Freaky

Sometimes strange things happen in your life. Weird people make odd comments at inopportune times and there’s no explanation for it so you do your best to go about the rest of your day without over-thinking it. If it has not already become heartbreakingly obvious, these are the kind of things that happen to other people every so often, and me constantly. This is not to profess that I am entirely normal, because I’m not. But you don’t see me going up to people in random public venues commenting on their attitude and general appearance. Unless they ask or something.

People think I’m exaggerating, or even completely fabricating, when I tell them about the things that happen to me over the course of a day. But I’m not. I went to the grocery store with my mom on Easter Sunday – so far pretty normal. We were getting eggs and food coloring and pie. I was wearing pink for the occasion, had no makeup on, and my hair was still wet from my shower. The white-haired, suited, Irish man with a cataract standing behind me in line holds a lock of my hair and says: “Don’t ever cut your hair. It’s beautiful and there’s nothing more feminine.” Nice sentiment. But I don’t know you and you’re touching my hair in the grocery store. I pull it away from him and assure him that I have no plans to cut it.

Before I can turn away he’s started telling me how he always thought he would marry a redhead when he was growing up in Ireland, and his daughter is a redhead but his wife is little and blonde like me and he probably wouldn’t have married her if she weren’t blonde so I should stay blonde. No idea what I’m supposed to do with this information.

My mom was standing next to me, and while she has heard many of the stories about my run ins with insanity she’s not usually present for them and was somewhat skeptical about their occurrence until she got to witness this little interaction for herself.  Total shock. Even the cashier wasn’t sure it was really happening. My only logical conclusion is that I’m instigating this kind of behavior. Some kind of sign that I can’t see is duct taped to my ass advertising “Tell me the strange things swimming in your head. I want to hear them. Bonus points for passive aggressively hitting on me.”

I’ve been to a lot of places in a lot of cities in the world and without doing anything special I will attract the crazies. Not violently crazy – I’m not getting accosted in the streets on a regular basis, but the everyday weirdos. They can function in the world, but like to purge whenever I’m nearby. I’ve been asked to try on clothes so that guys can pick something that looks good on their girlfriend. Held babies so harried mothers could tie their shoes (both the babies’ and their own). And I get compliments, advice, and offers from men on a regular basis – about everything, from what I should wear and which profession I should pursue, to what brand of painkillers to buy and how to wash my car.

I have come to the determination that I am not paranoid in finding this to be abnormal… even more than the usual abnormal. And I’m not complaining about this role I have been appointed in the universe. But I feel better knowing that other people are aware that this is going on in the world. And I do sincerely hope that Irish man is happy in his choice of blonde, because I’m into the accent and don’t plan to cut my hair, but I do have an age limit.

Day One

I’ve made it in Hollywood! Kind of. Sort of. Hopefully… 

I got my dream job on a cable show that I can not expressly identify because I would get in trouble, but mostly because I don’t need you people stalking me. Now, more than ever, I know the massive difference between convincing your self that everything will work out one day and having had it work out – thus justifying all of that hope. Suddenly I can join the ranks of the “There were only those 9 months between graduating from college and getting the job I hoped I’d get”  and finally leave behind the all too large club of “It’s been 9 months since graduation and I’ve accomplished exactly nothing- I’ll have to go to the reunion with a bag on my head”. Granted, I’m not actually on a writing staff or anything, but knowing that many people (including not a few who will read this) want to kill me and take over my job is satisfaction enough. Writers’ PA is still a PA and there is lots of getting of coffee, lunch, and other foodstuffs but I’m definitely one of the better paid coffee runners in the world, and obviously those aren’t my only responsibilities. The Show Bible- the mythical document they told us about at TV school that holds inside it all that you ever need to know about a given program is not only available for me to lay hands upon, but is now written by me. It may not end up on the air, but it’s pretty freaking amazing.

Not to mention the obvious advantages of being the conduit to the writers for everyone on set and in production, thus meeting everyone and making myself invaluable. I’m now 10 feet away from the writers’ room, which is significantly closer than the innumerable miles (both literal and metaphorical) that separated us when I was substitute teaching.

My whole universe has flipped on its head as a result of this momentous shift- most definitely for the good- but the whole whirlwind is a wee bit overwhelming. Within two weeks I have the job I’ve wanted since the fateful day I said goodbye to my English major, and I’m on the verge of moving out of my parents house for the second, and hopefully more permanent, time. I’m also leaving the few friends I have back home, but to be entirely honest between 12 hour work days and my propensity for sleeping I don’t know when I’ll have the time to talk to anyone anyway.

I’d write more, but my current state of semi-consciousness is only being maintained by taking over the part of my brain that forms words. Going non-verbal until I get a nap.

The Creative Process

There is a lot of speculation about how it is that artists (of whatever their chosen medium) make the things they do. Many artists have even told people how it is that they create their prized works- the things that they need to happen for the magical genius sparks start doing their sparky thing.

Picasso always had a muse (sadly for his wife, it was very rarely her, but that is another very sad story) whose existence in his life allowed him to create some of the world’s favorite paintings. Religion, and more specifically, the Roman Catholic Church played a massive role in the inspiration of statues, murals, and some of the most impressive architecture, like, ever. And the Pre-Raphaelites had Shakespeare, Tennyson, and Keats to provide their subjects and scenes. You may have noticed that I did not mention what it is that has inspired the writers of the ages. Not because we are special, or so drastically different from any other kind of artist, but we’re weird and accomplish most of what we do because of the firm affirmation that we are wholly unlike any who has come before us, and will be irreplaceable by any who come after us. Whether or not it’s true is irrelevant. But to state the inspiration of other writers would be to claim a kinship to them which I will be more successful ignoring.

Now, don’t assume I am quite so high, mighty, and vain as to suppose that having an ounce of Shakespeare’s talent wouldn’t be one of the single greatest things to occur in all eternity, because it would. But assessing myself to be a rational person, it’s a lot easier to believe that whatever measure of “I-guess-this-doesn’t-suck”-ness that I do have comes from something innate. That sense of possession over the words in my head and anything they happen to compile into is the last gasp of sanity that I get.

After days of listening to the fictional people in my head tell me about their lives, showing me exactly how it’s meant to happen in my dreams, and yelling at me when I don’t write it correctly one begins to think schizophrenia is not too far off. This may, or may not, be why some writers seem moody. Their moods would make perfect sense to anyone who could see the epic throw down going on, mid-cerebral cortex. Anyway, if I began to even consider that part of why the voices in my head behave the way they do could be attributed to dead authors of the past, my latest romantic entanglement, or (God forbid) the diety of your choice then I might actually lose it. It’s one thing to be a little off within your own head, and totally another to believe that your crazy transcends the bounds of space and time.

I have no idea if  it is the same for painters and sculptors. In that arena, I am best known for my stick horse and the one bowl from ceramics that doesn’t tip to one side. And I don’t really know if it’s the same for other writers. But it would explain a little of our behavior, and if that isn’t a slice of modern psychology then whipped cream is a food group.

My personal creative process is only initiated after a fair amount of mentally yelling at myself, getting into comfy clothes, putting my hair up, and eating a croissant (I’ll use pretty much any excuse to get a croissant and a hot chocolate). Then I stare my laptop into submission, sometimes outline up my left arm in pen, and periodically get up for solo dance parties in my room to keep things going.

I have no idea how knowing the way the words you’re reading reach you is in any way helpful, but I really needed that dance, and I feel better now.

The Library


As an expert in people watching I cannot recommend a more entertaining place to disappear into a corner and judge our fellow human beings. First of all, it is very easy place to disappear and no one really questions you sitting in the corner silently,this behavior tends to freak people out otherwise.

The most prevalent, and very best thing, about the people you see in the library on Saturday morning is the self-satisfied smirk that everyone is wearing to one degree or another that clearly says, “Look how intellectual and smart I am, I am in the library, and I’m here to get a book unlike all of you other aimless library go-ers.” The smirk prevails even when they nonchalantly walk past the map one or twelve times in an attempt to figure out where they actually want to be without giving anyone the impression that they don’t know exactly where they want to be (thus cracking the self-important facade).

But even before the map-sign dance there is the entrance. Besides the cranky library card officials who quite honestly have nothing better to do, there’s the people who don’t walk far enough in to actually make contact with any books, but stick to the free DVD rentals- and maybe glance at the New Arrivals shelf just to legitimize their trip. Yet, for some reason, they have no qualms about surveying you from head to toe when you walk in and trying to guess which department you’re headed to. Obviously the very tiny people have given themselves away by being children and thus go to the room allotted to them. Everyone else has five seconds in which their clothes, facial expression, and carrying device are all scrutinized even though everyone watching is going to find out where you’re going in about three seconds. You can practically see the bets being placed.

I was in a black sundress, smiling, with my purse- so it was generally assumed that I was going to do some damage in chick lit. Or, since I’m blonde, not-so-subtly venture into the picture books. When I made a beeline for the Reference section there were more than a couple dropped jaws, and not a couple of people waiting for me to circle back with a look of utter confusion. Never underestimate the power of a little advance googling.

I not only knew what section the book I wanted was in, but had memorized the reference number and walked straight to it without any assistance. One must be careful not to adapt the put upon airs of the grad students who have been sequestered in there for so long they feel you are intruding on their living room- pretentious is never cute. But the confidence of “Yes, I know where all of the books are” is just smug enough to make you feel like hot library shit. And that’s not a bad accomplishment for a Saturday morning.

Please avert your eyes from the archive basement dwellers on your way out. Or have coffee with them- it’s a good habit not to judge anything by its cover.

Jiminy Christmas

Wonder of wonders, I finished the much anticipated holiday letter before New Year’s. Considering I had the previous excuse of having to write it after flying home from school, right before Santa did, made this year all the more pathetic- because really, what else do I have to do? But when you’re celebrating more than your average number of holidays you suddenly have the ability to latch on to the traditions of any one of them as an excuse. Candle lighting is very time-consuming.

Then there are the distractions I create for myself. While having a very pleasant lunch with my sister, wherein we dissected the strange forces of the universe that cause her to have a harem of men that follow her, we started to wonder what it would be like if she married one of them. She having been the tomboy of our little duo, and me the ‘girly girl’, hypothetical wedding preparations were left up to me. Of course, being the very reasonable wedding planner that I am (or, at any rate, have the potential to be) I let her pick the colors. So the bridesmaids are in jewel tone purple and she is designing her dress on a napkin while I tell her about flower arrangements and try to define organza. Considering that the only thing my sister and I enjoyed doing within each others presence, from age 2 (when she was born) to last summer, was wrestling we had made leaps and bounds. Please spare me the jello references.

True, we have both grown up in a lot of ways- we could hardly help it. And there was some excellent grilled cheese at this lunch that could encourage love between a jewish momma and an anorexic. But happily discussing wedding plans for two hours was rather remarkable for us. As much as I hate to say it, my mother may have been right about the whole “not hating your sibling when you’re older” thing. But only after prolonged absences spanning months in which we are separated by 3000 miles or more. Whatever- her wedding is going to be gorgeous.

The rest of the family is not in quite such happy, grilled cheese graces. There was a Sherlock Holmes debacle and a whole lot of leftover brisket (which I have no problem with) and the realization that the new movie coincidentally has many things in common with the mysteries of Christmas- part of the holiday I am more than slightly less versed in than present and candy procedures. So when hearing the perfect man, living sacrifice, empty tomb, and virgin birth being discussed I, of course, was quick to mention that there probably weren’t any virgins in Sherlock Holmes, and I am sure I would have remembered a birth. Apparently this commentary was not quite Kosher. But very funny for all that.

Mom was so disappointed to have guessed wrong about the contents of a very large box she received, hoping that it was a new set of dishes, that she then proceeded to break the dishes we do have. Good thing there are sales in January.

With the knowledge that even with all of this it was rather a tame holiday I have a new drink to experiment with and a massive caramel apple to make a dent in. Happy Everything!!