Thursday, May 31, 2007

the raisinet philosophy

today, just after lunch, i had what i thought was a craving for chocolate. i scraped some change together and went to the vending machine and bought myself a package of Dark Raisinets. a relatively healthy compromise i reasoned - dark chocolate full of antioxidants and raisins full of fiber. whatever. that bit is irrelevant. i got back to my desk, sat down, readied to open the bag and realized:

i didn't want them anymore.

i just wanted to be allowed to have them.

it's not new news that allowing yourself to have things (not just desire then deny them) sometimes suddenly leaves room for you to figure out that you didn't actually want them in the first place, you just wanted the freedom to choose.

i'm still surprised when i see that concept in action in my own life, having lived in a self-destructive cycle of complete denial then totally whacked-out binging for so long. i suppose it's the same reason i have two 5-pound bags of chocolate and candy in my cupboard nowadays. the candy has gone relatively uneaten, but it's always there, my SweetTart-scented security blanket of sorts. i am allowed to wrap myself up in it's sweetness anytime i like, but i rarely want to nowadays, and i can't help but partially attribute that to the fact that its consistent presence gives me a choice to do so, or not. by giving myself permission to eat or to feel (b/c in the end that's what all this is about - permission to feel all your feelings - the good, the bad the ugly) anything i want to, i have quieted the denial devil that sat on my shoulder screaming her philosophy of 'NO' for so many years.

i can now hear my body sweetly whisper (or scream) her needs and cravings - sometimes waffle fries dripping with cheese and mayo, sure, but oftentimes sauteed spinach with a little garlic and olive oil over the Ben & Jerry's Phish Food ice cream in the freezer. now that's something that never woulda happened in the old days.

and then sometimes, it's not about the food at all, is it? it's the shared glance, caress, kiss, connection i crave. the ones that come from sharing that little piece of tiramisu in the tiny italian place with the tin ceiling, skinny waitress and unripe pears. imagine not having giving myself the permission to taste that.

you can learn a lot from an unopened bag of chocolate-covered raisins. totally worth the 75 cents.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

living from the inside out.

came across the new book by makeup artist Bobbi Brown the other day at work called Living Beauty. it's full of the typical makeup and skin care tips (with some nutrition and wellness tips thrown in for balance), but i picked it up primarily because it focuses on aging, and there are a few profiles of famous women highlighting their views on beauty and aging. some good little nuggets of wisdom in there from Susan Sarandon, Vera Wang, Lorraine Bracco, Marcia Gay Harden and others, but my favorite part of the entire book though, was the foreward by sassypants Debra Winger. i liked it so much, i typed it up for you here:
The prospect of writing about a woman "aging gracefully" has always given me pause. The term itself sounds as if one is lingering on each landing of a descending staircase, waving elegantly. The descent is what i do not like.

Aging, I feel is more of an ascension; I like that it is an "ing" word. It denotes a process that is alive and happening, growing up and getting closer. Now, we all know what "closer" may mean, but I think of it as moving toward the essential: what was there in the beginning and will be there in the end. We spend a lot of time in between trying to mask our age, hide it, reshape it, but it usually looks just that altered state.

I have tried in the last decade to abstain from value judgments of those who choose plastic surgery. I don't know enough about it to even remark. Sometimes the results are startling to the untrained eye, but many times I'm sure I don't notice what has been done. For me, though, I am actually interested in the process of aging as an unfolding of some mystery. When I was little, someone told me that when you age, you turn into the person you were all your life. My grandmother, although possessing beautiful skin, had a sort of permanent grimace, that she called her smile. It did things to her face that said a lot. My mother, whom I didn't get to see age past seventy, had a twinkle in her eye that stole your attention immediately.

Each time I travel to another country and encounter another culture, when I return I am struck by the degree to which American culture is led by the media and not the lives and inherent beauty of its general population. This is not to say that everyone subscribes to this view, but it is safe to say that the popular cutlure has no room for real wrinkles. We are the specialists in no lines, no map, no history and this includes the history of many other lands. My favorite state of mind is when I am not made to think about myself from the outside in. The fact is, this is a fool's errand. Through a series of events early in my life, I found that the message I got about "vision" is that you will never truly know what you look like to others, because it is your consciousness and your critical eye that are looking in the mirror. It is simply a measure of one's own compassion for oneself, which we all know is the first step to compassion for others.

It seems to be that the challenge is to be the embodiment of whatever is happening in your life at that moment. Sad faces can be extraordinarily moving and beautiful. Happiness is a message, not a look. Making it more difficult, the movie industry in the United States promotes a lineless, motionless look for women of all ages that is, ironically, so nonthreatening that it is scary. But not "scary" in the way we want in the movies. Not in a way that would wake us up, kick us in the butt, and say, "Hey! Get on with it!"

The knowledge that Bobbi has shared begs the question of how palpable can beauty, enhanced or not, be without acceptance of oneself at every stage of life. I am interested in this question. I also applaud those who hold up different approaches to beauty. It is a big world and there is room for us all. A deeper understanding can only lead to a greater appreciation. The effects of our actions are written on our faces. Why not tell countless stories in many languages?

Saturday, May 26, 2007

lbs. the musical

i just received this in a mass email from my theater company...somewhere between size 10 and size 12, one seems to become "full-sized."


John Paolillo (choreo.-writer) Mary Feinsinger (music) & Lisa Ferber (lyrics)
are casting a workshop of lbs. The Musical, a comedic view of what it is
like to be full-sized in a small world.

Seeking—Three Full-Sized Women: size 12-24; Three Thin Women: size 2 to 10;
One Slender Male. Note: All must be late 20s-early 30s and be very strong in
dance, song, and acting (triple threats). All types encouraged.

Auditions will be held june 2, 2-5 p.m. at New York Sports Club, 62nd St. &
Broadway, NYC. Bring pix & résumés, along with a tape/CD (karaoke) of music
to sing to. No pay. you will be asked to dance sing and read.

Monday, May 21, 2007

life is short, eat (the best part of the) dessert first.

is it self-loving or self-indulging to bake a batch of Julia Child's brownies on a saturday night, frost them with chocolate buttercream icing and then cut out a square directly from the center (leaving a significant Pyrex eye staring back at you) because in your estimation, that's where the best brownie resides?

and who says self-loving and self-indulging can't be one and the same?

Saturday, May 19, 2007

so many goldilocks think they're bears.

my friend sent me this in an email the other day:
You will get a kick out of this. So, I went to the doctor b/c I have felt like I'm fat and need to lose weight. I was hoping he would give me some diet pills to help get me started. He calculated my BMI and said "Well, you're one pound overweight." What?? Ha. So, no diet pills, but I can lose up to 30 lbs and still be healthy. Such a difference in culture and reality. Culture says I'm fat, reality says I'm just right.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

yeah, sorry...more babies.

tate william

just too tired to be profound, er...too tired to attempt profundity lately, so until i'm able to catch up on my z's...precious baby nephews it'll be.

grant mitchell

Monday, May 14, 2007

the mamas and the ta-tas

sundays can be painfully slow at the pub. yesterday particularly, it being mama's day 'n' all, and most people don't bring their mamas to a pub. while not good for my pocketbook, good for the mamas of the world, i suppose. the bartender and i flip through trashy mags for hours at a time. i learn nothing, other than that i'm quite happy i do not live in L.A., Jessica Simpson's breasts seem to get bigger with each passing day, and that with each flip of the page, i find myself feeling increasingly sorry for Britney and Lindsay, and increasingly angry at their mothers.

where are they?

and, of course, i recognize the unfairness in that complaint. why aren't i equally angry at their fathers?

where are they?

anyway, i did find an advertisement for this website. love 'em.


and yes, it was mother's day yesterday. yes, my mother is dead. yes, i was fine. i got a little Eeyorean on my walk home in the evening, but i made a few touchbase telephone calls to other motherless heathens i know and love, and that seemed to help. then i went home and celebrated the freedom of my motherlessness by running around my apartment with scissors in dirty underwear until 3am.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

the best IM conversation ever.

how are all things otherwise?

fine fine

good good

ha ha

ho ho

hoo hoo

he he

hep hep

challah challah

bling bling

ding dong

chin chin

hip ho

chim chiminy chim chiminy chim chim chireeeee...


rub a dub dub

you win

i wore ya down, eh?


Sunday, May 06, 2007

sub-par, big-old-duh chocolate cake

and my prize-winning humble pie is coolin' on the windowsill.

sitting at my keyboard. i nibble sub-par chocolate cake from Omonia Cafe. i wear a miniature tiara on my head, just because, or maybe because i need to feel special after a day of slingin' this and that, and cleaning out ketchup bottle lids with my recently manicured fingernails. i'm hoping someone is watching this little tableau through my window because oh, that would be amusing to see, and if i weren't so tired, i might giggle at my reflection in the window.

exhausted after a full weekend of work...and for what?

"paying off debt."

"getting ahead."

but am i? really...getting ahead? or just treading murky water? and not really getting any closer to The Island of the Debt-Free where everyone has maxxed out their 401k and has at least 3 months worth of living expenses in the bank "just in case?" i realize just now that i am very possibly working so much (seven days a week, thank ye very much) in order to avoid getting to the real work...the real, hard, "blood on the forehead" work of fostering and growing my show and all it's little branches. now, as i write it, it seems like such a BIG OLD DUH, but "paying off debt" really is a completely socially acceptable and even applaudable reason to postpone pursuit of your dreams. only now do i wonder how many of us who use that line are really just bullshitting the world...and ourselves.

clearly this requires more exploration, but i just don't have the energy at this point and time.

someone pointed out the little stress zits that have popped up along my hairline and in the center of my cheeks today as if they were pointing out peony blossoms.

why, thank you. i hadn't noticed.

this chocolate cake sucks.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

heaven on wheels

good thing i don't have my own kids yet...this blog would be littered with nuthin' but pics of the wee ones. for now, occasional litterings of my blossom nephew grant, livin' and lovin' life. i could learn a thing or two from him.

Friday, May 04, 2007

life balance + corn muffins

sorry i have been out of touch lately...busy busy busy. working seven days a week (no, i'm not kidding), allowing very little time for reflection, brownie-baking and dancing around my apartment naked. admittedly, my life is more than a little bit out of balance, but at least i'm aware, and aware that a change must be made and probably sooner rather than later.

but still...later.

for now, i'm just going to concentrate on eating my corn muffin.