Tuesday, August 28, 2007

A Dog's Life

My new favorite show on TV is Flipping Out on BRAVO. It’s about this multi-million dollar house flipper who has OCD.

Jeff, the OCD flipper, employs a small entourage who take care of his million-dollar ass and help manage all of his properties. His Executive Assistant, Jenni (who could be a Julia Louis Dreyfuss impersonator) is sort of like his right-hand woman, in both his business and his life. Jeff has also hired Jenni’s husband, whom he condescendingly refers to as “Trash Guy”.

In the latest episode, Jeff had a doggie masseuse come over to massage his dogs because he felt that they were stressed (ironically, he’s the person stressing them out).

Now, I love my dog, but there’s no way Vito is getting a massage.

First off, even I don’t go for massages. I’m lucky if I can squeeze in a manicure and a pedicure.

Second, Vito. Is. A. Dog.

Third, Vito lives like a King; the most stress he has in his life is deciding which patch of lawn on which to poop.

Fourth, Vito. Is. A. Dog.

Here’s what a typical day is like for Vito:

Get up. Eat breakfast. Go back to bed. Get showered with kisses. Wash paws. Nap. Take every toy out of the toy box. Bark at passersby. Nap. Eat dinner. Get belly rubs. Bark at passersby. Nap. Wash paws. Go to sleep.

I’m pretty sure if I brought a stranger into his life to come and put their hands all over him, he’d more than likely freak out.

He would not, however, object to living in a multi-million dollar mansion where he had 4,000 square feet to leave all of his toys.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Why I Haven't Finished My Novel (and other excuses and procrastinations)

I started a novel over a year ago. It's been at a standstill at 150 pages for about eight months.

The thing is, I WANT to finish it. I WANT to get it published. I think I just WANT it to happen, like magically, overnight. Hey, that's how it happens for some people.

As much as I love to write, I’ve never kept a journal or a diary (for myself). The thought of writing something everyday totally turns me off. Which is ironic since I’m a copywriter.

The one time I did keep a journal was my senior year in high school. My best friend and I bought each other journals and would write in them everyday...but for the other person.

It would be something like, "Today you wore your dark wash jeans, ankle booties and turquoise tunic. Your hair was in a headband and did this little flip and looked awesome. You totally flirted with Mark during gym class. We snuck out to McDonald's during our free periods for apple pies."

Then we exchanged the journals at graduation.

So I thought I'd start this blog for two reasons:

1. To help me become better about writing everyday (I'm not going to tell you what I'm wearing everyday...I really don't think that you're interested).

2. I'm hoping someone (one person? please?) reads me, loves me, and absolutely MUST publish me.

Plus, it gives me an excuse to put off writing boring headlines at work.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Hey, Stranger!

I talk to strangers.

It doesn’t matter where I am, I’ll just strike up a conversation with the person standing next to me. Sometimes it’s general “can-you-believe-how-slowly-this-line-is-moving” camaraderie, and other times it’s to talk about the oppressive heat or make jokes about Angelina's adopting all of Hollywood.

One time I was grocery shopping with my roommate and we were stuck with a price check. I struck up a conversation with the woman behind us and I thought my roommate was going to die of embarrassment.

“Do you have to talk to everyone?” she asked me.

Um, yes, I do.

I hate it, however, when strangers talk to me.

A few weeks ago I was in the produce department at the grocery store inspecting avocados when an older gentleman one aisle over is smelling garlic. His wife is next to him wearing a kerchief on her head, clutching her handbag that is decorated with duct tape.

Old Garlic Man smiles at me. “Where do you store your garlic?”

Now, for those of you playing along at home, the proper place to store garlic is at room temperature, NOT in the refrigerator. I know this, which is why my answer surprised me so much.

Me: “In the fridge.” (This is the part of the story you should refer to when reminding me that I totally asked for this ridiculous conversation.)

Old Garlic Couple gasps and exchanges a knowing look with each other that says, “I think we’ve found someone else we need to save with our wise garlic-storing advice.”

And try to save me they did, for about 10 minutes. They informed me (in a condescending way, I might add) that garlic should be stored in terra cotta, and it was silly to waste money on a pre-made garlic keeper.

“They can cost almost $10!” thrifty Old Garlic Lady informs me. “Want to know a secret?” She leans in and drops her voice to a whisper, and for a minute I think she’s going to reveal the Black Dahlia killer.
“We just go to a craft store and buy an empty flowerpot and lid for just a few dollars.” Ooh, ingenious!

She also informs me that if I’m really strapped for cash that month, I can just empty out a flower pot that I have at home and just use that.

Before they can comment on how I should test for avocado ripeness I beeline it out of the aisle.

Lesson: Don’t tell anyone you keep your garlic in the fridge. And when a stranger starts talking to you, run away (unless it’s me, of course).

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

33 Is the New 26 (Right? Right??)

I’m getting old.

Not like, did-you-fill-out-that-AARP-application old, but more like, spaghetti-strap-tops-don’t-belong-in-your-closet old.

This weekend my friend from Boston came down to visit me. There we were, two hip and trendy thirty-somethings hitting the town for dinner. We looked great and felt fabulous.

As we were heading to the car to go home (attempting to maneuver through the throngs of scantily-clad twenty-somethings) I heard myself saying to my friend, “Can you believe that these girls are just starting their night now? It’s after 11pm!”

Even though I still look like a youngster (on a good day), there are certain things that constantly remind me that I’m not 26 anymore.

1. I’m always tired. I’m a morning person (6am? I’m up!), so I was never one of those people who could stay up all night, only to go to bed at 4am because there was nothing else to do (attention those people: the thing to do at 4am is SLEEP). But now, I find myself falling asleep during the week at 10pm. Even worse, when it hits 11:30 on a Saturday night, my body gets all twitchy if I’m not in my pajamas.

2. It’s hard for me to believe that when I used to go to bars, constantly being bumped into, having to stand for 4 straight hours and drinking a martini out of a plastic cup never bothered me before.

3. Um, since when did they start putting tryptophan in alcohol? Three drinks and I can’t keep my eyes open. Add to those drinks a big dinner and forget it – I’m asleep in my risotto.

4. I’ve been ma’amed. Twice.

5. HGTV has replaced MTV.

6. OMG, I have bikini tops that provide more coverage than the shirts girls wear when they go out.

7. Have you seen how much sodium is in Ramen noodles???

8. Hey, wait a minute – there IS something wrong with running around town in 12-degree weather wearing just a tank top and open-toed shoes! It’s winter, girls! Put. On. A. Coat.

9. I need WAY more details when it comes to going out. I can no longer answer the question, “Hey, you want to come to this party my friend is having?” with a simple “Yes.” Instead, the question is answered with a series of my own questions, like: “Where’s the party? Will I know anyone there? What’s the dress code? Will there be food, or should I eat before I go?”

10. My hangovers last 3 days.

Monday, August 20, 2007

a hairy conversation with mom

I'm sitting at a bar with my mother, enjoying a post-dinner drink. We ate at a Mexican restaurant so I’m pretty full and my hair smells like fajitas.

My mother and I are talking about my grandmother’s swollen ankles when she makes an inappropriate segue to bikini waxes. Wow. So not the conversation I want to have with my mother right now. Or ever.

Mom: “So, what’s it like?”

Me: “What do you mean ‘what’s it like?’ It’s like putting hot wax on your skin and ripping out the hair. Down there.”

Mom: “Does it hurt?”

Me: “Actually – to me – it hurts a lot less than waxing my eyebrows.”

Mom, pensive for a minute: “What do I wear?”

Me: “An evening gown.”

Mom: “Huh? What?”

Me: “Just wear your underwear.”

Mom: “Well, Kristin, YOUR underwear and MY underwear are two different things. Yours cover a lot less.” My mom doesn’t know how to whisper. Now the old guy sipping Jameson at the end of the bar thinks I wear crotchless thongs. Nice.

And the conversation goes on. I signal the bartender for a much-needed second drink. My mother continues talking about waxing her hoo haa.

I squirm through another three or four minutes of questioning, ranging from “Do I have to let the hair grown in?” to “Do they wax just the outside?”

Finally, I can’t take it anymore. “Mom. Please. Just make an appointment and don’t do anything to your…down there…from now until then. Okay?”

My mom stares at me for a minute, looks around the bar, and takes a sip of her Pinot Grigio. She leans in and whispers, “Can you believe that woman has the gall to wear those pants out in public?”