Thursday, March 29, 2007

stout...but in a good way.

the happy buddha approves.

i've been dying to make Nigella Lawson's Chocolate Guinness Cake for quite a while. it's a beautiful cake, meant to look like a dark pint of stout with a frothy top. i'd been drooling over the picture in Feast for over a year (the page is starting to dimple with damp), but could never find a sufficient enough reason to bake it.

pish! posh! pshaw! life itself is a sufficient reason to bake!

so, patty's day it was going to be (appropriate, right?) but alas, my ambition fizzled and went kersplat after two nights cocktail waitressing until 3 am. forced to choose between baking or bed, i chose bed.'s been a stressful-strange past couple of weeks, and i've had a hard time relaxing. i come home absolutely exhausted, lie down in bed thinking i'm going to konk out in seconds and then...


lilliputian Boy Scouts parachute onto my bed and tie millions of little knots up and down my neck and spine.

so, ya know, that makes it hard to sleep...



i know that part of the reason i'm having trouble relaxing is that i'm always anticipating the next "to do," whether it be for work-work, cocktail-waitressing-work or size-ate-work, my brain is always on "work mode."

so last night, i put it on "bake mode."

inspired by a visit to farmgirl, i read about her emergency chocolate cake and decided that tonight was the night to bake myself to a better me, a more ME me. when i'm angry, i make soup because i can chop chop chop CHOP CHOP CHOP slice slice slice slice whack whack whack stir stir stir CHOP! without hurting anyone, and when i'm tense, i bake because it relaxes me. the rhythmic stirring, the careful measuring, the finger-licking, the sweet-warm scent that wraps its arms around my entire apartment and holds it tight for hours. i cannot afford a trip to a spa, i cannot afford a massage, i cannot afford to buy Valium on the black market, but i can afford the ingredients for a little emergency cake baking therapy.

and for the record, i slept like a wee lass. so well, in fact, there was a pool of drool on my pillow when i awoke. i fine sign indeed.

on my mom's Royal Doulton china
(that's her and my aunt charlene in the background - my cooking muses).

the recipe i followed is this one here. nigella uses dry cocoa in her recipe, but Little Bouffe uses bar chocolate. i feel a little guilty defying Nigella, but if given the opportunity to choose, i prefer using bar chocolate instead of cocoa. as a fan of the aggressively moist, gooey baked good as opposed to the delicately cakey, i don't like the idea of adding DRY, PROCESSED CHOCOLATE POWDER to my cakes, brownies, cookies and frostings. some people feel you need to reduce the butter or shortening in your recipe to offset that added by using bar chocolate, but i think not. i've never done so, and i've never been displeased with the results. also, i made cupcakes - they're easier to share - so i adjusted the baking time to approx. 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

and now i MUST have one of these.

baby ain't got back

to be filed under the category "you can't have it all - at least you can't have it all at once" - jessica simpson is rumored to have had her ass padded when she did the film Dukes of Hazzard. she'd gotten too thin.

pity they can't "pad" her brain.


did i write that out loud?

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

life vs. pancakes

Dr. Jules Hilbert: Hell Harold, you could just eat nothing but pancakes if you wanted.

Harold Crick: What is wrong with you? Hey, I don't want to eat nothing but pancakes, I want to live! I mean, who in their right mind in a choice between pancakes and living chooses pancakes?

Dr. Jules Hilbert: Harold, if you pause to think, you'd realize that that answer is inextricably contingent upon the type of life being led... and, of course, the quality of the pancakes.

oh, please go rent the movie Stranger Than Fiction with Will Ferrell as Harold Crick.

a sad barometer

in an article about Halle Berry from the April 2007 issue of InStyle Magazine:

...she still keeps a pair of Mickey Mouse blue jeans that she's had since she was 15. "It's my annual test - I try them on once a year, and if I can still fit into them, then all is good in the world!"





this sort of disgusts me, and i'm really too tired to explain why. i'm sure there's some sad part of me that would love to be the same size i was at 15 when i'm 40, but i really hope it doesn't matter at that point. hell, it doesn't matter to me at this point, and i don't even have an Oscar or a 31-year old model boyfriend.

Monday, March 26, 2007

productivity for dummies.

sometimes, (when i am so tired i consider "reading a newspaper" at my desk - head bent over, hair in face - so that i might nap for a few minutes undetected) it feels like the most productive thing i do all day is go to the bathroom.

when you're a toddler, this is considered an accomplishment. when you're 32, it's sort of sad. no one gives you a gold star or a gingersnap, and i really think that is completely unfair.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

a sugar-fairy godmother would be nice.

i am sooooooo tired.

financing a dream is exhausting. two waitressing shifts this weekend, a full work week to look forward to, and i never want to see my Guinness-soaked, black Dansko clogs again.

this is when a girl starts contemplating the possibility of landing herself a sugar daddy. i don't want to marry him, but if i could just date him for a few months, until i got my finances in order, that'd be fab.

eh...i know i'm not the type. this trophy talks too much, and this C-cup girl needs support with her spaghetti strap camisoles, ifyouknowhatimean.

but, it's nights like tonight when i really wish the whole Cinderella story weren't a load of balderdash.

do they make glass slippers with orthotics?

Friday, March 23, 2007


my sweet cousin lauren sent this photo to me the other day. i think i was six and she was five. we were at our grandma's house in naples, florida (i thought everyone was saying "maples" until i was about 10 - as in syrup) for easter vacation, and i'd practically forced lauren to dress up like a dog and be in my play. i got to wear the pretty pink dress and play the heroine.

i seem to recall trying to force lauren to do a lot of things. poor girl. she was my pretty, little blond cousin that i, my kid sister every time she came to visit. she was supposed to be my doll. i wanted to try on makeup, play with dolls, put on plays and do all sorts of girly-things she had absolutely no interest in. she'd rather hang out with the boys while they played Atari or latch on to my older brother Lance's pantleg and let him drag her all over the house. i did not understand her tomboy proclivities, but i sure did love her. being the babies and the only girls in three-children families, i suppose we had to bond. it was a matter of survival. one of us had to go for help when the other was being held down and tortured by one of our brothers (usually involving a spit-loogie dangling perilously close to our face).

looking at this photo, i realize...lauren may have had to dress up like a dog, but i'm flashing the world my six-year old nip for all eternity. i think she got the better end of the deal.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

or maybe just a poodle.

if i ever have a daughter, i want to name her Adele.


i like the name, and a Jersey mother by the name of Adele Springsteen took out a personal loan of $60 one Christmas so she could buy her teenage son, Bruce, an electric guitar.

Live version of Thunder Road.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

fear wears a skirt.

To one who is afraid, everything rustles.
- Sophocles

Monday, March 19, 2007

good eggs.

i received an email from the shipping department at work on friday -

Subject: You've received a Fedex or Messenger Package

i was busy on friday, and i assumed it was something lame that could wait until today - a press kit, a glossy brochure - something that took 40 trees to produce and would immediately end up in my trash can after a quick flip and a sigh.

today, i came in after a very looooong weekend of slingin' drinks, and was not in the bestest of moods. i stopped by the shipping department to pick up my package...

it was a plain manila envelope addressed to me.


it was lumpy and rattly and certainly suspect.


curiosity got the best of me. i opened it anyway. it wasn't anything lame and glossy and environmentally incorrect at all...

inside, i found two one-pound bags of Whoppers Robin Eggs and a sweet note from a friend. touched. sooo touched. in an email about a week ago, he'd asked me what i was up to...i mentioned that i was doing pretty great, getting the show together, on an upswing after a few bumpy months, and eating lots of easter egg chocolate malted milk balls. the crunch, it would seem, helps me cope.

and then, this.

isn't it nice to be heard?

the mammy project

my review of michelle matlock's one-woman show, the mammy project, was posted yesterday on

so good. (the show, not the review) please see it if you have the opportunity someday.

while you're at it - check out this 1967 Aunt Jemima syrup commercial.

Friday, March 16, 2007


the name my friend c christened my as yet unbooked size ate tour.

it's not prostitution, but it's close.

i'm waitressing again.

cocktail waitressing to be specific.

something i never ever thought i would do, but i need the extra cash right now what with getting stuff together for the show, catching up on bills, etc., and in the world of nyc pub/bars/restaurants, the place i'm slingin' drinks is not a bad gig, and i'm actually quite thankful for the work.

it's different waiting tables when your 32 as opposed to when you're 22. when you're 22, or at least when i was 22, i was a lot less inclined to set boundaries with the guests. as in,

"wow, that guy keeps brushing up against me every time i walk by him with a tray. oh well, at least he says he's sorry."

at 32...

"if that fucking guy keeps accidentally-oh-i'm-sorry-COPPING A FUCKING FEEL every time i walk by him with a tray, i'm going to accidentally knee him in the family jewels so hard, he's going to be the last in what i'm sure is a long line of pathetic assholes with a penchant for bad haircuts, no necks and excessive cologne."

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

travel the country with me and 9 of my closest friends.

size 16 a.k.a. Svetlana is offstage per usual.

i need a producer's assistant and stage manager in one! and please let them know that i bake.

if you or anyone you know might be interested, please refer them to this craigslist posting.
Producer’s assistant/stage manager wanted for my one-woman show, size ate.

Excellent opportunity for someone interested in getting hands-on experience in theatrical marketing and production, touring, stage managing and social issues theatre. size ate deals particularly with body image and eating disorders.

One dynamic, flexible, good-humored, self-starter needed for a two-part job:

As producer’s assistant…

Primary duty is to assist in marketing and booking of size ate for academic year 2007-08 at high schools, colleges and other appropriate venues. To begin in April.

As a stage manager…

To tour with performer for academic year of 2007-08 (rehearsals begin in August). Duties include those of a typical stage manager as well as a variety of other duties, some yet to be discovered, that will aid in getting the show mounted in each venue.

Email me for more details. Include a resume and two references. Check out the show's website at

Stage management experience; touring a plus, but not required.
Excellent phone demeanor.
Mac/PC proficiency.
Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel required. PowerPoint a plus, but not required.

just a thought

i don't think people should be allowed to eat apples at their desk.

CRRRRRRRRRRRRRUCHamuncha, muncha, muncha, muncha.

that's all i'm sayin'.

it is never too late to be what you might have been. - george eliot

Halloween, 1955 by Grandma Moses

Q. When is "too old"? At what age do we give up?

A. At 100, Grandma Moses was still painting.
At 98, Titian painted "Battle of Lepants"
At 93, George Bernard Shaw wrote "Farfetched Fables."
At 91, Samon de Valera served as president of Ireland.
At 90, Pablo Picasso still drew and engraved.
At 89, Arthur Rubinstein gave a recital in Carnegie Hall.
At 88, Pablo Casals still performed cello concerts.
At 82, Winston Churchill wrote the four-volume work,
"A History of the English-Speaking Peoples"
At 82, Leo Tolstoy wrote "I Cannot Be Silent"
At 82, Goethe finished "Faust"
At 81, Benjamin Franklin engineered the diplomacy that
led to the adoption of the US Constitution.

notice that none of these people's accomplishments involved bigger boobs, firmer abs or the perfect size 6.

Monday, March 12, 2007

i can't be clever; i have cramps.

aunt flo arrived in all of her vermilion glory this morning. she's such a show-off.

i sat down to eat dinner tonight, and i thought to myself,

"i feel so fat and miserable. what's wrong with me?"

"you're supposed to feel this way, dummy. you're on your period. the fact that you're feeling this way proves your normalcy. if you felt slender and euphoric, i'd be concerned. it'll pass."

"oh, yeah...right."

i immediately felt better. funny when you give yourself permission to feel a certain feeling how that feeling almost immediately diminishes. the bad ones anyway. or maybe it's just that instead of feeling dumb for feeling fat and miserable, i just feel fat and miserable, which doesn't seem like much of an improvement, but it is. minus one is only minus one, but it's still minus one.

Fat and Miserable are just annoying houseguests; i have to tolerate them tonight, but i can get through it because i know that they won't be here when i wake up in the morning.

i am slowly killing them with a lethal cocktail of ibuprofen and dark chocolate M & Ms.

and daily naps.

my nephew grant mitchell

i'm pretty happy about being an adult, but i do miss being tossed into the air and pony rides.

Sunday, March 11, 2007


i've had quite a few folks tell me they've tried to contact me via info(at), and it's bounced back.





anyway...for the time being, please email me at margrocks(at), until i get my server situation figured out.

(and if you're wondering why i write my email address with (at) instead of @, it's because crazy little hackers can scan the web and pick up formatted email addresses and then slam you with spam, and i already have a Rolex and in no need of an "enlargement," thank you very much. when you email me though, use @ in the address, or you can just click the link.)

Saturday, March 10, 2007


for every girl who's ever been without, and for every guy who's had to dash to the drugstore for the girlfriend who's been without -

go here now and donate. for every "virtual donation," Seventh Generation donates one box of organic cotton tampons or chlorine-free pads to a homeless shelter in the state of your choice. one box of fem-hyg products can set a gal back a pretty penny, and it's frequently overlooked as a necessary supply in homeless shelters (i occasionally volunteer at a shelter in the city, and the supplies are paltry if existent at all).

now, i have to say (and i admit, this is rather self-absorbed of me, but...), i wish they'd handed these products out free in my junior high school. i know, i know...i was far from being a homeless person, but it sure would have been easier than trying to get up the nerve to request them from my freaked-out father - a recent widower who would have prefered to continue to operate under the notion that his 12-year old daughter did not, nor ever would have, breasts, ovaries, a uterus or a vagina.

anyway...check it out. it's an excellent website dedicated to all things menstrual including a growing list of euphemisms and a collection of personal musings.

my question is - are they donating ibuprofen and chocolate as well? and when are they going to start selling that as a pre-packaged deal?

and fyi: if you ever happen to be in France and ask for a box of tampons, do not be surprised if you are presented with a lovely set of rubber stamps suitable for creating adorable shower invitations and holiday cards.

Friday, March 09, 2007

pole-dancing + self-perception

i went out on tuesday night with a few friends from college. two live in the city, but one of them (the slightly-crazed looking redhead on the right), still lives in Oxford, Mississippi, and i haven't seen him in almost 10 years. good lord. i'm old enough to have friends i haven't seen in 10 years. old enough to have friends that i haven't seen in 10 years that i used to drink with...and when i say drink i mean bourbon not Kool-Aid.

i had such a great time. we were just supposed to go for a very civilized dinner of tapas and wine, but "just one more drink at a bar around the corner" turned into a spontaneous night of pole-dancing (us doing the dancing, boys included) and snorting laughter. it was just what i needed. platters of greasy chorizo and calamari. dancing like J-Lo in a Lower East Side Bar. two drunk boys proclaiming to me and my female companion r: "OH MY GOD, YOU'RE FUCKING BEAUTIFUL!" at random times throughout the evening (and what girl doesn't like that no matter how drunk the boy's gotta get to say it?).

it was a much-needed connection. a touchstone experience that made me think about all the parts i loved about myself at 19 - i was insanely fearless when it came to having a good time (pole-dancing, anyone?). i was unabashedly nerdy and smart. i spent Saturdays reading on the porch at Square Books or wandering through the stacks at the college library, unearthing ancient editions of Daphne du Maurier books and 1960s periodicals. creativity was a part of my daily life - like a multivitamin i had to have in order to survive - i performed in musicals, painted watercolors, created collage, kept an illustrated journal. i was very happy and "me" in many ways, unhindered by the need to be seen as a "pretty girl," i was free to dive headfirst into academia and theatrics. ohhh, and i loved the way it felt on my skin.

of course, how can you think about the parts you liked about yourself without thinking about the parts you hated? while i was quite fulfilled creatively and academically, i felt incredibly overweight and unattractive. i hid my plump though by no means enormous body underneath extra-large T-shirts and jeans meant for someone two sizes larger. i rarely if ever went out. i knew i couldn't compete with the perky sleek silhouettes of the Tri-Delts and Kappa Gammas, so why even try. i watched a lot of Oprah and read lots of Martha Stewart Living magazines. i had a great personality, and i was liked by many people, but if you'd asked me where my boobs were located, i'm not so sure i could have told you, so unaware of and unwilling to acknowledge my body was i.

i had a conversation with p, one of the guys i was hanging out with on tuesday. he told me that he'd always felt like "the little guy" in school. i told him that's so weird because i've never thought of him as "small" at all. i know i've thought of him as adorable, absolutely fucking hysterical, incredibly talented and probably one of the few graduates of our theater department who would be a commercial success (and he's well on his way), but "small" was never a word that came to mind when i thought of p. i told him how i'd felt about myself in college, and he was similarly miffed. i mean, i certainly know i look (and feel) better than i did when i was in college, but i certainly wasn't the lumbering troll i perceived myself to be, nor was he the elfin woodland creature he imagined himself to be.

it made me think about how we perceive ourselves and how i have learned, since college, that there are times when it's safe to trust my self-perception - when i am sane, well-fed, well-rested and well-loved (are any of us that in college?) - and times to not - when i am insane, starved or stuffed, exhausted, neglected and/or, pardon me for being blunt, bleeding between my legs. that's when i know to turn down the internal volume and call on my good friends* to give me the straight up. i may not believe them at any given moment that i'm fabulous and deserving, but i have decided to trust that they're telling me the friggin' truth and then act "as if." they are not stupid people, and on those days when i don't know myself, i can trust them to tell me. i can rest in their loving assessment until the fog clears and i can see the true version of myself on my own.

so, for now, i'm resting in "fucking beautiful," and i have to say, it feels pretty fucking nice.

*choose wisely.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

i may not be a billionairess, but at least i have my own place.

hello kitty and i are the same age.


she was born on november 1, 1974. i was born on january 19, 1975.

this means something to me. i'm not sure why, but it does.

according to her bio, she still lives at home "with her parents and her twin sister, Mimmy."

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

happy birthday, paavo.

click for a much better view.

paavo's one-month old hand. hard to believe that any part of me was ever this small, this delicate and yet this fierce.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

the baby is going on tour.

some of you sugarplums have been sweet enough to ask what the hey-na is going on with my one-woman show size ate.


here's the deal. because it would take me just as much time and money as it did last time for me to mount the show in NYC, and because i have even less of both this go 'round, i've decided to postpone the performance in order to focus on booking performances at high schools and colleges for the fall of '07.


i was totally psyched about doing the show again, so eager to perform after having been away for so long, but...i thought and i thought and i thought, and ya know? it's time to move the show onward and upward towards the actual goal - taking it on tour so i can get it seen by as many girls and women as possible. if i had the resources to do both full-tilt, i would, but no piles of money have fallen on my head just yet allowing me to quit my job and fund both extravagantly (and if i can put in a request that that pile of money not fall on my head, but just to the right of me, thanks).

it's about the message, not about the performance.

so...that means doing loads and loads of really un-fun things like creating Excel spreadsheet call lists, re-writing the press kit, updating the website, searching for a stage manager, cold-calling schools, deciding whether or not to incorporate or become a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, getting insurance, getting quotes from balloon companies for nine inflatable body's all a big ol' learning experience.

eh. i'd rather be acting.

but, as my friend t said, "you gotta feed the baby."

so, i will, because i want her to grow up big and beautiful and strong, and i'm pretty confident that she'll do just that. problem is - you know it's coming but you can't avoid it - when you feed the baby, it's inevitable that she's going to throw up all over you at some point, probably more than once, and you still have to love her because she's your heart and soul and because it's all your fault anyway - you created the little excrement machine.

schadenfreude en toilette.

somebody was crying in the bathroom stall at work today, and it wasn't me!

and i thought i was the only girl who found bathroom stalls to be one of the best places to let it more ways than one.


Sunday, March 04, 2007

being good to myself day...night...week...month...year.

my friend r was having a rough day on friday. she got off of work at 5, and wanted, she thought, to go home and take a nap.

"no," she thought. "i am not going to go home and take a nap. that is the beginning of a descent into a night of self-pity watching bad television and eating greasy chicken wings."

so, she decided to make that night her Being Good to Myself Night.

i love that.

she got her nails done. she had a glass of wine at the wine bar in her Brooklyn 'hood. she flirted with the French waiter. she ate a healthy dinner. she got a good night's sleep.

she said she realized that "being good to myself doesn't look like going out for happy hour drinks every friday and getting wasted. being good to myself doesn't look like eating a plate of hot wings. and it doesn't necessarily look like a trip to the gym or a yoga class."

being good to ourselves is going to differ day to day. it's about listening to our bodies, our hearts, and our heads, then making the best decision based on what they need at that very moment. not what you needed yesterday, or what you'll need tomorrow, or what you should have gotten from your parents when you were three, but right now. maintenant. (and if one of them is asking for something completely ridiculous, like your heart is shouting "right now, it might feel really good to toss yourself out the window, and see if you'll sprout fairy wings so you can fly away from this shithole," your head and body will stop you.)

i find i treat myself best when think of myself as my own mother. i don't mean i'm acting as my actual mother, Homecoming Queen Janie Horsfall Laskey (i've tried that, doesn't work), but as my own internal mother, as if i were mothering myself as i would my own child. it sounds sort of woo-woo, but it's pretty amazing how it informs your choices when you think of it in those terms. a mother does what is best for a child, not necessarily what the child wants in order to feel good pronto, but what is best for the little tyke in the long run. a mother disciplines, but loves unconditionally. she knows when to push you to that hot yoga class, onto that stupid blind date you'd rather cancel, out of your south Georgia comfort zone and into the chaos that is New York City, but she also knows when what you really need is just a bowl of mac 'n' cheese and a Jane Austen novel.

and chocolate, of course.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

oh happy day.

air out your skivvies...literally or figuratively or both.

alright...enough depressing, angry posts about a culture that perpetuates an unhealthy weight for women.

today, spring flirts with us. we can see her pink, tulle petticoat peeking out from beneath winter's heavy coat. everyone is in a better mood for it including my friend penny at the bagel shop who knows my name and how i like my bagel and my coffee.

i am wearing a yellow t-shirt with puffed sleeves and sucking on a chocolate non pareil. the miniscule white spheres stick to the roof my mouth, but i like it.

i have found a new favorite song that makes me wiggle my booty whether it's in a chair or not (No Bad News by Patty Griffin).

life is good.

and i've found a lovely poem by the sufi mystic poet Hafiz. when i put a book of his poetry down, a residue of ecstasy and light remains on my fingertips. sort of smells like tangerines.

We Have Not Come To Take Prisoners

We have not come to take prisoners,
But to surrender ever more deeply

To freedom and joy.

We have not come into this exquisite world

To hold ourselves hostage from love.

Run my dear,

From anything

That may not strengthen

Your precious budding wings.

Run like hell my dear,

From anyone likely

To put a sharp knife

Into the sacred, tender vision

Of your beautiful heart.

We have a duty to befriend

Those aspects of obedience

That stand outside of our house

And shout to our reason

"O please, O please,
Come out and play."

For we have not come here to take prisoners

Or to confine our wondrous spirits,

But to experience every and ever more deeply

Our divine courage, freedom, and Light!

so go out and PLAY!!!

Friday, March 02, 2007

auschwitz is in vogue, apparently.

from the latest New York Times T magazine

this picture makes me nauseated. it's easily the most disturbing fashion photo i've seen in recent years, and that is saying quite alot. she's underage, underweight, underfed and clearly undersupervised.

where, pray tell, is this child's mother?

Thursday, March 01, 2007

what else does a nominee need?

i just got this in an email from my friend j, and i had to share:
When they asked Abigail Breslin at the Golden Globes what she had in her little purse,
she revealed lip gloss and cookies. A girl after my own heart.