Friday, December 28, 2007

Every rose...

On cold days like today, I have Bret Michaels to keep me warm... warm with laughing. While I've never been a fan of Poison and was "like, totally a new waver" in the 80s, I've been mildly amused at VH1's "Rock of Love" with Bret Michaels. Thank goodness they're doing another season, and we will all have a train wreck to watch once again.

A co-worker sent me this video today, and she's right, the chick in the beginning does look like Charlie Sheen in a wig. Even better, a quick Wikipedia search of Every Rose has its Thorn gives heartfelt information like the following:

Vocalist Bret Michaels wrote the song in response to a failed love affair with a Los Angeles stripper. Poison had been playing at a cowboy bar called "The Ritz" in Dallas, Texas. After the show, Michaels called the woman at her apartment and heard a man's voice in the background. Heartbroken, Michaels wrote the song with an acoustic guitar in a laundromat.

Guess that's what you get for falling for a stripper, right Bret? I do hope they use this song again in the new "Rock of Love" season because they played it in the first season when Bret chose Jes after kicking stripper Heather to the curb. Then Jes kicked him to the curb when she didn't hear from him for six months and she decided to go back to her boyfriend in Chicago.

I'm a pop culture slut.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas to all

This was one of the mellowest Christmas days I've had in my entire life. All month I've told people, "I just want my long winter's nap," and today I got it.

Nevermind I was probably a bit sleepy from all the "Holly Jollys" I concocted for my mom and I last night (a top-secret combination of pomegranate and cranberry juices along with Absolut Citron and a splashy grenadine topper), but I didn't want to do anything. I didn't want to see anyone. I just wanted today to be a normal day. I think there is too much pressure put upon festivities and cheerfulness because that's what we're supposed to do; that's what we're conditioned to do from the time we are kids and we wake up at 4 in the morning to find what Santa brought us. (Unless you were me, and woke up at 2:30 in the morning if my parents had forgotten to give me my very own holiday Benadryl to keep me asleep.)

Christmas used to be filled with people and music and rushing from place to place, generally ending with my dad's band playing at a club. That club doesn't exist anymore either, the dark windows symbolizing more to me than any building owner could know. Today, I exorcised demons and dust bunnies and threw away dried roses from ghosts of relationships past. I hung up all the coats I'd been too lazy the past month to properly put away, and amazingly enough, I discovered I have dining room chairs that shouldn't have been coat racks for so long. 

Things have changed. My new holiday book I read today is Tim Burton's The Melancholy Story of Oyster Boy and Other Stories and I learned that "Stick Boy's festive season" ends up ashes like mine has. I think this is the coming year to rebuild my mojo, but first realizing today is a day just like any other day. Pretending to be festive when unbelievably sad is less comforting than imaginable, and finally admitting this has been cathartic. Last year I forced myself into a painted smile under curled hair, and this year, losses have sunk in much deeper. I'm finding out the abject permanence of life after we're left here flailing around. While situations haven't seemed real in the past 14 months, I'm learning this is the way it is.

Most years I've watched the holiday movies and played the music of the season, but this is the year to curl up and take those pressures off my mind. I watched Creepshow and laughed how I've never done any conventionally, and the holiday this year seems to have typified that. I know I will be okay, I know I will get through this, but why the hell does it have to hurt so much?

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Something to look forward to

Saturday, December 22, 2007

What big mountains you have

I was doing my nightly check of before bed and the article entitled Mountains Discovered on Titan, Saturn's Largest Moon piqued my interest. Unfortunately it was quickly overshadowed by the ultra-sassy photo accompanying it:

BYU professor Jani Radebaugh stands in front of an image of Titan taken with the Cassini Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS) instrument. "Bright features generally correspond to features of high topography, such as the mountains seen by the Radar instrument, and dark materials generally correspond to large dune fields made of organic particles," Radebaugh explains. "Thus, the rocky highlands are interspersed among the sand 'seas,' similar to Earth's continents and oceans." (Credit: Image courtesy of Brigham Young University)

While the article was extremely interesting and, after further reading, a giant step forward in understanding just how Earth was created, specifically in relation to the creation of Utah's mountains, I couldn't help but wonder why professor Radebaugh was posing like she was a member of the cast of Gossip Girl. If this is one of the first times an image of Titan was introduced into NASA's studies, why would we not see a picture of, oh I don't know, Titan?

Tomorrow we'll find a photo of the BYU professor clad in a cute tennis frock serving a three-love match on Saturn's rings. The day after that, we'll see Professor Radebaugh snowboarding through ice on Mars. The next day, perhaps, modeling a Victoria's Secret Canterbury nightdress while lounging in the ethereal gas giant of Uranus.

Would we ever see a picture of a male scientist posed in such a way? Nope. The typical arms folded, thoughtfully chewing on the glasses earpiece comes to mind there. In this case little Jani's Fergalicious Glamour Magazine cover pose overshadows and discredits the scientific breakthrough.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Workin' out

I found a new dance class last week that I'm obsessed about. It's called Zumba, the newest craze that's a mix of Latin, hip hop and high-intensity cardio steps. On the other hand, if I were in Japan, I might find a different kind of workout that might burn calories too:

Monday, December 17, 2007

Our love is here to stay?

Yesterday somewhere between a ginormous brunch at Sundance and a bottle of wine with my mom, I watched one of my favorite films, An American in Paris, and really realized how times have changed. I mean, this is no shock since the film came out in the mid-50s. It boggles my mind to think on what's come out since then: Lean Cuisine, diet soda, internet porn-- all the important things on which we've come to rely.

There is a scene in An American in Paris which was probably very romantic at the time, where Gene Kelly (who is the number three love of my life only behind Dean Martin and Jimmy Stewart) seemed the quintessential leading man in search of his love, but a scene I found particularly creepy now. Actions that simply would not fly in this time of technology and, well, stalking laws.

Let me summarize, Gene Kelly ends up at a bar with this chick who is quickly becoming his sugar-mama. While there, he ends up seeing a very French Leslie Caron from afar and all but kidnaps her to dance with him. (sidebar: I'm not a fan of Leslie Caron, and never have been. I much prefer the Gene Kelly/ Cyd Charisse pairings from both Brigadoon and Singing in the Rain and I also hated Caron in Gigi. Actually, I hate the movie Gigi.) The next day Kelly, still thinking of the lovely Caron, invades her privacy by dropping her an unwanted phone call while she's working at the perfume shop. Caron hangs up on him, telling him never to call her again.

Not taking the blatant hint, Kelly goes to her work to find her, woo her, then further annoy her. He finds her at work! Right at the perfume shop! The "Pop-In." This is not romantic. This is creepy. This is behavior exhibited by people who have addictions to things. This is not action of someone who respects the woman's wishes to be left alone.

I was watching this and getting mad at Gene Kelly. "How can you do this, Gene?" I asked the TV out loud. "How can you completely disrespect her wishes and continue to bother her time and time and time again?"

I continued, "You're a nice guy, Gene, a very nice guy. You're also a snappy dancer. But leave the poor girl alone if she doesn't want to talk to you. You're not a psycho, but you're acting like one."

If this were in today's world, I daresay Gene Kelly would be one jazz-step away from putting the lotion in the basket. Like all movies at that time, this relationship finally ended with a happy feel-good button and an old-time song and dance. Things I just don't see happening in this jaded world of 2007.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Take on me

There are ways to make a good impression, and ways to not make a good impression. I'll just let this one speak for itself:

Him: What was the first concert you went to?

Me: Ummm, A-Ha. The "Take on Me" concert. It was sponsored by Prell Shampoo.

Him: No way! That's awesome! What year?

Me: (Sadly, without thinking) 1985.

Him: Bwaaaahahahahahahahahahahahaaaa! I was two!

First off, I was 10, not 25. They were my favorite band, because I was 10. I got free tickets from KCPX radio and my parents took me. Secondly, the reaction made me feel like I was a groupie, had German sex with the three members of A-ha, then somehow did Simon LeBon and Falco too. 

...or maybe I'm just highly sensitive this time of year.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Merry ho ho

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper, the more creative, the better. With good bows.
2. Real tree or artificial? Artificial, with only white lights. I hate colored lights. I even only like white bubble lights. No colors. None.
3. When do you put up the tree? I haven't for a few years. I'm not festive this time of year anymore.
4. When do you take the tree down? I think the last time I put one up I managed to forget about it until sometime in July.
5. Do you like eggnog? Yes. With rum. Or just rum. Plain.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? Dancerella
7. Do you have a nativity scene? No. They scare me.
8. Hardest person to buy for? People I don't know well. I like to get pretty personalized, "special" gifts.
9. Easiest person to buy for? My dad. Sooooo, yeah.
10. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? A blender from a boyfriend. I never want to get appliances from a boyfriend again.
11. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail if I think about it. Like I said, I haven't been festive for a few years.
12. Favorite Christmas movie? National Lampoons' Christmas Vacation and Scrooged
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas ? Just before I start to feel overwhelmed.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Yes, generally it's one of those generic, neighborhood "hot chocolate in a cup" kind of gifts.
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Shrimp and margaritas. We used to always do "shrimp-fest" for Christmas. And margaritas. Lots and lots of margaritas.
16. Clear lights or colored on the tree? See number 2. ONLY clear lights. Ever. Ever.
17. Favorite Christmas song? Good King Wenceslas, a jazz saxophone version.
18. Travel for Christmas or stay home? I used to like to stay home, now I like to travel as far away as schedule allows.
19. Can you name all of Santa's' reindeer? Yes. Even after a few beers.
20. Angel on the treetop or a star? Pink flamingo.
21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Open presents Christmas Eve. Drink. Sleep in Christmas morning.
22. Most annoying thing about this time of year? Wanting to feel festive, but not really feeling festive.
23. What I love most about Christmas? It doesn't last all year.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

And we thought the snow was bad...

When I was a traffic reporter, I lived for the days something a bit out of the ordinary would happen. I relished whenever I would see "Moose on the Loose" or "Car on Fire" on my traffic script, and it was like Christmas on the one day I actually got to report a 10-80somethng; "Airplane Landing on Freeway." Particularly snowy days were another story. They basically entailed picking the worst clusters on the freeway, then eventually telling folks to "stay home." But when I saw this picture, I had to laugh because it reminded me of the times I wanting more from my traffic script than "Crash."

Since I'm a news junkie (for many reasons) I found this particularly funny. It's from a station in California, so I'm fairly confident that nothing like this would ever happen in the Land of Zion.

Still, there are apparently worse things to happen to the roads than the current wind, ice and snow we're seeing right now:

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Separated at birth?

As I'm ditching the gym for the Top Chef: Holiday Special and Grey's Anatomy tonight, I couldn't help but think of two more people separated at birth.

Top Chef's Marcel and Spike, the evil gremlin, from Gremlins. I even like Marcel because of his quirky overconfidence and his ability to make an edible foam out of vienna sausage. But the resemblance is too uncanny.

It's funny because it's true.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Bad Senior Portraits

It got me thinking about high school kids now. They all look so... old. It's either media influence or growth hormone build-up after years of fast food, but girls definitely look way more mature now than they did when I was in high school. Hell, I'm still waiting for my breasts to grow.

That brings me to a little search I did of high school Senior portraits which left me thinking, "What the hell?"

This girl is a high school senior? What was it I said about girls looking way more mature than I ever did when I was in high school?

Somewhere, High School Musical is missing Corbin Bleu. All the hip kids are doing it.

This pose does not make this baseball player cool. Baseball players are already cool without having to act like Wild Thing in Major League. He is going to look back at this and think, "I thought I was sooo cool. Turns out, notsomuch."

Shortly after this picture was taken, Snidley Whiplash came by and tied her up, yet, Dudley DoRight never came to her rescue.

What is it with posing these girls on the train tracks? I feel like they're all destined to jump into a car and join the circus.

Finally, this girl is going to graduate high school with a 3.9 average, go to a liberal arts college and regularly smoke cloves outside of a radio station. She reminds me of me.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

On man and metal

After enduring the first part of SciFi Channel's Tin Man on Sunday night, I wanted to learn more about how a station seemingly so great about supporting good shows (hello? Firefly? Battlestar Galactica? MST3K?) could fail so miserably.

After a Google search (for the grammatically challenged, Google is a proper name and should be capitalized) of "Tin Man," I learned they meant for the show to be totally off-kilter from really having anything to do with The Wizard of Oz. I also learned that "man tin" is available just in time for the holidays. If "man tin" is what you're after, Google (again, notice the capitalization) advertisements will let you know how to find it-- for less!

So the proper people can pick out tin (for less!) to fix L. Frank Baum's coffin after Tin Man makes him roll over several times.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Sugar shame?

Today, Urban Princess and I went to a much-need laughter therapy lunch at Noodles and Company where the man bringing out our lunch was extremely nice to us. Sure, we're a couple of hot saucy trollops, so why shouldn't he be kind? As we were finishing our lunches, he came over and gave us each massive cinnamon sugar cookies and told us to have a great day. His gesture made me smile, and though I wasn't going to chow the cookie, I put it in my purse to take back to work for my boss.

I forgot the cookie was in my purse.

Later this evening, I went to the gym for much-needed Forest Gump run. You know those runs? You just keep running and running... Anyway, as I was digging through my purse to find my iPod, the cookie came flying out and landed in plain sight on the locker room bench. Women changing all around me saw this workout contraband and stifled horrified gasps. It's true, I looked like a shame eater stashing post-run treats, and in my embarrassment quickly threw the cookie back in my bag like a seventh grade boy hiding porn from his parents.

When I got home from the gym, I threw the cookie away, never to let it surprise me again.

In other news, the SciFi Channel's Tin Man miniseries sucks, even if it does star Alan Cumming. Also, Speed Racer is being made into a live action movie starring Matthew Fox and I'm hoping that doesn't suck too.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Invisibility cloak

For the second time in the last two weeks, and the third time in my life, someone just hit me with their car. When I say "someone just hit me," I'm talking about "my leg" and not my car. I'm wondering if I'm invisible, which is difficult because 1.) I'm tall so I clear the average vehicle's bumper and 2.) my coat is made of day-glo hot pink faux fur. Don't you think if you looked in your rear view mirror, or God forbid actually turned around, and saw a big fuchsia muppet wearing glasses you'd take a second to hit the brakes?

Sometimes I wonder how people make it through the day. If they're not on the fast-track to committing vehicular manslaughter in a parking lot, they're generally just out to pick a fight. Prior to this incident, a woman yelled at me for having exactly 19 items in the "express" lane designated for 20 items or less. Last time I checked, 19 items are less than 20, but this still seemed to be a point of contention.

The woman in front of me loudly commented to the check-out lady, "I can't believe these people who get into this faster lane and have more than 20 items! They're sooooooo rude," as she glanced back to me. "I'm sure they go around wasting everybody's time all the time. They might as well have fifty items!!"

"I have 19," I told her. "Do you have something else that's bothering you today? Do you need a hug?" She gave me a dirty look as she stuffed her receipt in her purse. She turned to walk off in a brisk huff, but was again thwarted when her purse strap caught on the edge of the check-out counter and pulled her over backwards. My only fault was that I laughed as she tried to catch her balance.

Later as I got hit by a car in the parking lot, I thought it might have been this lady exacting her revenge on my positive attitude and ability to correctly count to 19. But it wasn't.

I finally got to my Jeep and was loading up my purchases when a stranger walked up to try and sell me a bag of tamales. First off, I don't like tamales so I would never get them anyway, but I do actually appreciate people who are out to make an honest buck. Still, here's a little word of advice: If you're going to peddle your dirty bag of tamales to strangers in a parking lot, you might not want to hit up folks leaving the grocery store. Chances are, if they wanted tamales, they'd grab a few pre-packaged, sanitary tamales from the freezer section. I believe these are the same tamale-buying people who feel opposed to contracting Legionnaires' disease or bacterial meningitis or scurvy or whatever you get from eating parking lot tamales.

I also believe I'd like to just stay home for the rest of the month.