Archive for November, 2008
Here is a picture of two of my least favorite people, Russia’s Medvedev and Venezueala’s Chavez.
What I didn’t realize until now is that Rowan Atkinson (of Bean fame) may be the perfect choice to play Medvedev on film.
No luck yet on casting Chavez.
As we prepare for the biggest food day of the year, it’s important to know where to look for the best food inspiration. Gwyneth Paltrow, actress in such critically acclaimed movies such as Hush and View From the Top, has launched a weekly e-newsletter called GOOP. The tagline is “nourish the inner aspect.” Fashion sense and soul, perhaps, could be nourished by GP, but certainly not body. As the old adage goes, never trust a skinny chef.
While ensuring a good dose of fiber and certainly well-intentioned, her Buckwheat and Banana pancakes pale in comparison to what some of her heftier cohorts in the field produce. Do you doubt for a moment the joy of sinking your teeth into Paula Deen’s hashbrown breakfast, french toast casserole or breakfast burrito? Or even question whether Ina Garten’s breakfast bread pudding is good for you?
Some areas are best left to the professionals.
Greetings from Marriott Renaissance in Kowloon, Hong Kong! So far so good in my travels. I know I’ve written about Shigella in Peru and Pot Leaf and Swiss Miss Packet wall-papered common rooms in a Kyoto hostal, but the first 24 hours in Hong Kong have been, actually, quite… well, fantastic!
I am here with my mother, which always lends itself to some interesting quotes… Some of the best so far:
“Now Remember, when I poke you, you’re supposed to look around for a weird-looking man.”
*”Shoot, I was too far away from you just now to poke you!”
*To the Chinese concierge: “Are there any restaurants that serve “NORMAL” food? Without weird stuff in it?”
*At the Cantonese restaurant: “No wonder everyone here is so thin.”
*At the Cantonese restaurant, after offering her some of my beef: “No, I’m sort of turned off to the whole idea of meat right now.”
So, my mom and I were leaving the Cantonese restaurant (hungry) and someone handed us a flyer for a 35 minute foot massage for $80 HK Dollars. Immediately, my sore feet smelled a bargain, so my mother and I followed this woman up this sketchy elevator, down a sketchier hall, and went into even a sketchier room with people getting their feet massaged. There was a shrine in the corner with red light bulbs and incense.
My mom was claiming she was just keeping me company, but once I mentioned that I would pay for her, her shoes came off and her feet went up on the ottoman. I stopped caring once the woman started going to town on my swollen feet for $11 US. Am I too good for a hole in the wall foot massage parlor? Apparently not.
In the mean time, we’re eating cashews for breakfast.
More to come.
My time of leisure is coming to an end. It’s ending along with my freedom of expression in my wardrobe. In just a few short weeks, I will have to go back to the world of blouses and trousers, and I’m furious. I’m happy to dress up, and I’m happy to wear jeans, it is the in-between world that I find simply offensive.
I am reminded of an episode of “Just Shoot Me” where Nina Van Horn’s (Wendie Malick) character declared: “Everyone is so quick to blame the absentee father, but let me tell you something: it’s casual wear that’s ruining this society.”
I refuse to buy a sweater set. I hope to have purchased my last pair of “sensible” dress shoes. So it is here and now that I say, loud and clear, “NO” to business casual. I defy my new employer to try and stop me. I will dress formally or casually, but anywhere in between is fashion no-man’s land. And I won’t do it.
So, below are some of my favorite “twists” on business casual:
Heeled, patent leather, croc-embossed boot.: If you must wear a pencil skirt, you need a pair of hooker boots, but abstain from the same old boots people have been wearing for seven years–the patent croc adds a sassy spin which render these acceptable.
Heeled, snakeskin peep-toe: If you must wear slacks, let THIS shoe be peaking out the bottom.
Feminine, shapely sweater: Throw away your twin sets. They do nothing for you. If you must wear a buttoned sweater, let it hug your figure, and let it have feminine details, like this little Nanette Lepore number.
Dress with feminine detailing: Good heavens, people, you’re still a woman. Don’t let Hillary Clinton be your fashion muse and fill your closet with pantsuits and trousers galore!
Wear a feminine suit: Not a boring one. Throw away all boring suits, I’m serious. Keep only those with something interesting and feminine. My theory is, if you dress above the dress code for a few days in a row, you buy yourself a day slightly BELOW the dress code, thereby avoiding Fashion No-man’s land: The Dreaded Business Casual.
A Casual, expressive and comfortable top: Vintage Fringe is chalk-full of cute, interesting casual tops that you could skate by with in a business casual environment if you buy yourself enough karma by dressing above the dress code as much.
Remember, you’re only allowed to go below dress code, if you prove that you can go above it, too. The key is avoiding a cuffed pant with a button down shirt or sweater set every day. That is what they expect you to wear, and that must be what you avoid. Good luck, my little army! Please help me in my crusade against the evils of business casual. Remember, the absentee father isn’t to blame!
HAVE YOU EVER BEEN SO DISTURBED IN YOUR LIFE? I have a 67% resemblance to THE HOFF!!!!
With the election over, it’s time to turn our thoughts to Christmas. Harriet Carter, a perennial favorite, offers some new and exciting products for the most discriminating buyer. Perfect gifts for people who already have everything and can take a joke.
Is it a fleece? Is it a cape? Is it a cult? The Snuggie offers the rare blended look of Fundamentalist meets Star Wars.
Harriet boasts that these sleeping pets actually “breathe.” For apartments prohibiting pets?
This just screams Clark W. Griswold from Christmas Vacation. For the bargain price of $12.98, you can declare to the world that you are a Harriet Carter disciple. To complete the look of complete seasonal cheer, you can also purchase a computer garland.
“Wrap this warm kitty pillow around your neck and feel the aches and tensions of the day disappear.” There is a 70 percent chance that a woman who’d order this for herself hoards cats in her home.
Now, while the catalog offers a wide array of dickies, from ruffled to shirt-style, I’m dismayed to discover Harriet doesn’t offer any tapestry blazers. These coats of many colors are the finest fashion statement a grand dame can make.
From Mr. TRussell Jacobson, ardent capitalist:
Dear Obama-supporting Friends-
You all know me to be a somewhat sarcastic and jovial fellow, but in all sincerity I am extending my congratulations to you. I know this moment must be a time of relief and hope for you. I suppose it is similar to how I felt towards Ronald Reagan as a child and then later on as an adult. And even though I still feel uncertain and reserve a healthy dose of skepticism, I am extending an olive leaf of peace and earnestly wish our country well under President-elect Obama. I think “losers” in an election have the responsibility to stand back. Not to do nothing. But out of respect for the majority who decided, allow the agenda of the “winners” to move forward, adding their input to make the outcomes better for the constituents they represent. Likewise, the “winners” should in a spirit of goodwill, work to promote the general welfare. I think too often we as citizens allow ourselves to be stirred up by the talking heads and pundits to a heightened level of mild hysteria which makes for good news and TV ratings, but does little to quiet the quakings of our common ground.
Our founding fathers gave a few hints as to what those commonalities could include: love of country, our fellow man, and God. I only pray that all three of these commonalities will be strengthened over the next four and perhaps eight years. For if we are to remain a strong country both in terms of economic prosperity and national security, a love and respect for that trinity must endure – for they are the great assumptions of capitalism and democracy.
One of the things I fear most in the modern liberal movement is secular progressivism. It is a movement that seeks to perform a global “find a replace” function with the words God and individual. When completed, the result will be a world with no anchor of right and wrong, no moral foundation. We have seen the effects of morality ignored in our economic crisis, our social structures, and in the sufferings of millions from human rights violations the world over. In short, the world will ever be in commotion so long as morality plays the part of all things passe.
It is my assertion that capitalism is the most compassionate economic system the world has ever known. Beginning in the 18th century, its principles gave way to the birth of widespread growth in the middle class. America, the country that at one time practiced it the best, was the land of opportunity. Our standard of living has been expanded beyond what any person even 50 years ago could have imagined. When all of her citizens work tirelessly in pursuit of their own self interest, America is at its best. If President Obama accomplishes nothing else, he will have given hope without reprise to a rising generation of minorities to know that it is alright to study, to achieve and to escape the bonds of poverty. But I wish him many more accomplishments that will benefit us all.
So as the torch of leadership passes, let us recall Senator McCain’s commonly repeated confession of patriotism; “We are all Americans”. I love my country very much. My grandfathers fought against her enemies and saw their brothers in arms fall in their advance to protect our shores, defend our way of living and guarantee peace and prosperity for a generation. But as Ronald Reagan said:
Freedom is always just one generation away from extinction. We don’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream; we have to fight for it and protect it, and then hand it to them so that they shall do the same, or we’re going to find ourselves spending our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children about a time in America, back in the day, when men and women were free.
It is my hope that President-elect Obama uses his new mantle of responsibility to serve out his time in the selfless service of his country, her citizens, and her God. For he will swear an oath to God to do just that. Should his service honor that creed, then he will have won this conservative’s vote in four more years.
So apparently Chris Matthews’ job, as a journalist, is to make this (Obama’s) presidency a success.
And what responsibility did he have to the Bush Presidency? Certainly not the same.
Sorry, looks like the video didn’t embed correctly (dang wordpress!). Here’s the link:
Here’s hoping we don’t go that way again.
As a Republican I can’t help but be disappointed by the outcome of tonight’s election. I’m listening to John McCain deliver a classy concession speech. He did a nice job of addressing the significance of Obama’s win. This is one of the best speeches I’ve heard him give during the whole campaign.
A concession speech should leave the losing party just as proud of their nation as they would have been had they won. “Believe in the promise and greatness of America.”
A key line- “offer our next president our good will.” I can and will do this. This is not to say I will give on those significant and key areas where I disagree with our President-elect. I can and will give him my goodwill.
If you haven’t heard his speech, google the transcript. It is a model for graceful concessions. I am very happy to have supported Senator John McCain.
On a related note, there was an earlier shot of a tearful Jesse Jackson awaiting the big celebration in Grant Park in Chicago. In spite of strong personal feelings about his character, I am happy for him.