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Poetry and snark blogger who also has a creative side (who knew?)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Who's That Girl, Er, Boy?

Andrej Pejic
We all know that top models are impossibly skinny, waiflike creatures who are, in essence, clothes hangers with eyeliner and bear no resemblance to actual human females. Meet the latest "It" girl to sashay down the runway-Andrej Pejic. He's a guy!

The 19 year-old from Bosnia-Herzegovina is one of the hottest male models right now. He appears in the latest Marc by Marc Jacobs campaign and is being shot for French and Italian Vogues. He will also appear in Gaultier's spring 2011 campaign with model Karolina Kurkova in matching pleated trench coats and fishnet tights.
Now I have no problem with Pejic. Frankly, he's gorgeous. And androgyny has always been at home in modeling and high fashion.  What does disturb me, however, is that designers are now considering the male form an ideal for designing women's clothing. Somehow, the perfect female model has gotten so skinny, so flat chested, and so lacking in body fat that she may as well be an adolescent boy! This is rather disturbing. No wonder real women have trouble finding clothes that fit properly. And no wonder girls and women have such conflicted relationships with their bodies! Face it-no amount of dieting is going to make us look like Andrej! Guess I may as well have some ice cream then!
Who's that girl, er, boy?


FYI: Toxic Waste Could Be Bad for Your Health

Okay, I admit I have a warped sense of humor, but this made me do a spit-take on my Diet Coke! I received the following notice in my email today from the FDA:

Candy Dynamics Expands Recall To All Toxic Waste® Brand Nuclear Sludge®
Products All Flavors And All Sizes

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - January 27, 2010 - Circle City Marketing and Distributing, doing business as Candy Dynamics, Indianapolis, IN, is issuing a voluntary recall of all Toxic Waste® brand Nuclear Sludge® products, all flavors, 0.3 oz (8 g) size pieces. The product is imported from Pakistan.
On January 13, 2011, the company previously recalled Toxic Waste Brand® Nuclear Sludge®, Net wt. 0.7 oz (20g) size, all flavors. With this recall of the smaller piece size, the company has now recalled all products labeled as "Nuclear Sludge®".
Further testing by the company indicates that while some of the smaller sized products were below the FDA limit, some contain elevated levels of lead (0.101 parts per million to .311 ppm; the U.S. FDA tolerance is 0.1 ppm) that potentially could cause health problems, particularly for infants, small children, and pregnant women.
(highlighting mine)

What kind of person would buy a product called "Toxic Waste Nuclear Sludge" and actually consume it?!! Furthermore, who would eat it if she were pregnant ("Oh, honey, I know it's 2 a.m., but I'm just craving some Toxic Waste Nuclear Sludge!") or feed it to an infant?!! Seems to me that if you eat something called Toxic Waste, you're dang lucky if all you get is some elevated lead levels! You could start setting off geiger counters and casting a green glow!

If disgusting candy is all the rage, maybe I could head up the road to our local hospital and "borrow" one of those medical waste containers for inspiration. Lollipops that look like used injections, taffy that resembles bloody band-aids, little candy bottles with assorted "body fluid" syrups inside them, there are endless variations of medical monstrosities that could be molded into candy form! Sweet!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

You Like Me, You Really Like Me!

Natalie Portman can kiss my tuchas with her Golden Globe! I got me a blog award! My sister from another mister, Mrs. Hyde, at A Bitch Called Mom has bestowed upon yours truly the LOL Award. It's satisfying to know that there is at least one other person who appreciates my atomic sarcasm and obsessive rumination on humanity's inanity. Mrs. Hyde, you are my sister-in-snark! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

So the "rules" of this award say that I'm supposed to reveal 7 things that my blog readers don't know about me. I don't want to bore you with facts about where I was born and what my favorite color is (zzzzz.....), so this may take some thinking.

1. I have a degree in clinical psychology (seriously, I do!) And, yes, I am analyzing you right now.
2. I met my husband-to-be when he literally tripped over me at a party and laughed at my shirt (it said "Eve was framed")
3. I have never smoked a (tobacco) cigarette in my life
4. I have a passion for volunteering and do or have done the following volunteer jobs: tutor, counselor, Planned Parenthood escort, Nature Center educator, Hospice bereavement group facilitator, Meals on Wheels driver, Girl Scout leader, teen mom support group educator
5. I wrote a reader's story under the name of "Lola" for Playgirl in the 1980s
6. I have another blog called Mouse Droppings where I post creative writing
7. I have seen the Bitchy Waiter in the Fantasticks and have met him in person!

Now, I'm supposed to nominate other blogs for this award. This is tough because Mrs. Hyde and I tend to follow the same people, and I'm NOT going to give you this award again if that's what you're thinking, you big fat award hogs!

My winners for the LOL Award are the following (in no particular order):

There! I think my work here is done. Cue the music. Camera zoom in for my close-up. Cue the crocodile tears. Thank you again Mrs. Hyde. I couldn't have done it without you and without the inspiration from all the moronic jackwagons out there in the world who give me so much to rant about. I know I'm forgetting someone...I want to thank my family, my dogs, who provide me with so much ranting material, my fellow Americans, organized religion, politicians, the television industry, Oprah, that moron at the gas station, those ignorant rednecks at the liquor store.....

    Monday, January 24, 2011

    Calgon, Take Me Away! or Mom's Tweaking on the Bath Salts Again!

    The bar on moronic ways to achieve a high has sunk yet again. As if huffing gasoline and glue weren't boneheaded enough, out of the Annals of Inscrutable Behavior comes getting a high from bath salts.

    I've read several news reports recently about products marketed as bath salts becoming a growing drug problem. These substances are injected, smoked, or snorted and produce a hallucinogenic high that has led to impulsive, violent, and delirious behavior in some users. Take, for example, Neil Brown of Fulton, Mississippi. He got high on some bath salts and then grabbed his skinning knife and slit open his face and stomach. Brown lived to tell his tale, stating, "I couldn't tell you why I did it." That about says it, don't you think?

    Apparently, the substances in these powders are stimulants with effects similar to methamphetamine. In fact, many of the users appear to be meth addicts (I guess it's easier than dealing with the stench of a meth lab in your house!) The parent substance of the drugs, cathinone, is derived from an African plant and is regulated. The chemical substitutes mephedrone and methylenedioxypyrovalerone, also known as MDPV, are made in a lab and, at this point, are not illegal since they are not intended for human consumption. They can cause hallucinations, paranoia, rapid heart rate,and suicidal thoughts (sounds like my idea of a good time, how 'bout you?).Several states are now looking to enact laws to ban the substances in these "bath salts." Louisiana has already done so. Unless someone can find a way to ban stupidity, these jackwagons will continue to find ways to get high. Hey, anyone got some Comet bathroom cleaner I can smoke?

    Friday, January 21, 2011

    Keep Your Laws Off My Body: Roe v. Wade 38th Anniversary

    Well, it's that time of year again--time for the March for Life in Washington, D.C. Come Monday, January 24, thousands of holier-than-thou anti-choice zealots will descend upon our nation's capital to mark the 38th anniversary of Roe v. Wade by trying to influence our legislators to set women's rights back to the days of Mad Men. And what a lovefest it will be as they demonstrate their principal that every life deserves protection and respect! They will surely be carrying their iconic banners declaring those who practice or have an abortion "murderers," holding their breathtakingly beautiful pictures of mutilated babies high overhead for all to see, and perhaps a small minority may even be defending those vigilantes who, in the name of saving babies, bomb abortion clinics and murder abortion providers.

    For the anti-choice younguns', there's a Student Essay, Poem, and Poster Contest! This year's theme is "Thou Shalt Protect the Equal Right to Life of Each Innocent Born and Preborn Human in Existence at Fertilization. No Exception!  No Compromise!" Just think of all the cute posters the kiddies will create with that theme! And the possibilities for poems are just endless! I'd be just dizzy with all the rhyming variations I could make with "fertilization!"

    One of the goals of the annual March for Life is a Mandatory Human Life Amendment to the Constitution. This amendment would ostensibly follow the "Life Principles" set forth by the anti-choice crusaders and make them law. Care to hear a few? Obviously, they are against abortion. But they are against abortion IN ALL CASES, NO EXCEPTIONS! Raped? Too bad. Incest? Tough luck. Genetic defect incompatible with life? So sorry. Mom with 6 kids and a life threatening pregnancy? They'll pray for you. Oh, and for those of us who use an IUD for contraception, rip those babies out right now!  They're considered murder because "the life of each human being shall be preserved and protected from that human being's biological beginning when the Father's sperm fertilizes the Mother's ovum..."

    I wonder how many of the "pro-lifers" are also against capital punishment. It seems that if you respect the sanctity of life no matter what, then you would also be against the death penalty no matter what. Somehow I doubt those statistics overlap 100 percent. Also, it seems that if you really wanted to decrease the number of abortions in this country, you would encourage sex education so that young women who are sexually active could prevent unwanted pregnancies. I also doubt that those numbers line up equally.
    Who are these people that they think they can decide what is best for everyone else? If you're against abortion, they don't have one. If someone asks your advice or opinion, feel free to offer it. But please, KEEP YOUR LAWS OFF MY BODY!!!

    Tuesday, January 18, 2011


    If you thought reality TV hit bottom when a group of trashy New Jersey lowlifes (most of whom aren't really even from NJ!) ascended to star status because of their sexcapades, big hair (Snook-It, anyone?), 4 letter word vocabulary, and tanorexia, you seriously underestimated the depths to which television and its viewers will sink in the name of "entertainment."  May I present Exhibit A: Bridalplasty. In this despicable derivation of reality TV, brides-to-be compete for a celebrity-style dream wedding and the dream body to go along with it. Does this mean that they engage in a series of physical challenges meant to whip them into shape before the big day? Heavens no! These brides-to-be compete with each other in order to win nose jobs, implants, lipo, and botox! As the show's advertising says, it's "the only competition where the winner gets cut." How sick is this?!!

    These women, who I should say are normal looking, if not attractive, are competing for surgery! Let me reiterate: this is purely elective plastic surgery. There is not one cleft lip or extra limb among them. I became aware of this hideous show as I was channel flipping and saw what looked like a house full of car wreck and burn victims gathered around an attractive host. I soon discovered that these were some of the previous weeks' "winners," who had gotten one or more of their "wish list" surgeries by winning a challenge. It was morbid! These women trash talk each other from under their mummy wraps in the recovery room! Let's meet one:

    Kristen Sciacca, 21
    a nanny from Orange, CA, was crowned Miss Anaheim in 2005

    Wish List
    • breast augmentation
    • liposuction of chin
    • liposuction of cheeks
    • laser hair removal
    • teeth straightening
    • liposuction of abdomen
    • liposuction of flanks
    • liposuction of outer thighs
    • liposuction of knees
    • Botox between eyes 
    I know what you're thinking. What a heifer, right?!!  This girl certainly needs work before any guy would marry her!

    And what about the surgeon who performs all of these operations? Who the hell is he? Dr. Terry Dubrow is supposedly a board certified plastic surgeon. Wherever he went to medical school, I think he must have slept through his medical ethics class because doctors are prohibited from giving away procedures as prizes for contests. I'd love to have a gander at the medical release form these Barbie wannabes must have to sign before appearing on this show!

    It's bad enough that women and girls face such enormous societal pressure to have "perfect" bodies. We go on ridiculous diets, starve ourselves into anorexia, puke ourselves bulimic, and destroy our self-esteem in a futile effort to reach someone else's notion of perfection. Now, plastic surgery is being added into the mix as an option for women other than the rich and famous. Will the pre-wedding lipo become as common as the pre-wedding manicure? Botox parties are already cropping up in suburbia, where party goers are offered facial injections with their apple martinis. Does this scenario remind anyone else of the Stepford Wives or is it just me? Only now, it's we  who are offering ourselves up to be carved into walking, talking Barbies. Is that progress? I don't think so.

      Wednesday, January 12, 2011

      See Dick and Jane Get VD

      As I write this post on the occasion of my 47th birthday, I can honestly say that I don't mind getting older. Given that the alternative is death, I say "Keep those birthdays coming!" Most days I can laugh off the graying pubes and sagging boobs. What does get my panties in a knot (and for the record, I DO NOT and WILL NOT wear granny panties no matter what my age!) is when I am reminded that as I get older, there will be fewer people who can relate to my reminiscences.

      This phenomenon was painfully and vividly illustrated the other day with my 14 year-old daughter. We were looking through a book I had bought for a friend in my reading group called Dick and Jane and Vampires. It's a wonderfully subversive parody of the old reading series that was used in schools  from the 1930s to the early to mid 1970s. Remember "See Dick. See Dick run. Run Dick run,"? Remember the soothing, soft watercolor  images of the bland siblings Sally, Dick, and
      Jane? Remember their non-dysfunctional family, their dog Spot, and their cat Puff? My daughter
      didn't! Although she thought the "Vampire" Dick and Jane was funny, she didn't know that it was a parody! She didn't recognize the Dick and Jane characters at all! Now I realize that she had not been instructed with these books, but I have friends who are a decade younger than I am who never used the Dick and Jane books at school but still "get" the reference and recognize the characters. When did people forget Dick and Jane? (Poor Sally was never as memorable; you gotta feel for the third child.) This is quite disturbing to me. It makes me feel like I should be saying "icebox" instead of "refrigerator"  or something!

      And while we're getting all nostalgic, why can't anyone remember all those bizarre Public Service Announcements of my childhood? When I talk about PSAs now, people think I'm referring to a prostate test! No and yuck. I'm talking about those ads that used to be on TV in the 60s and 70s that dealt with all kinds of social issues that parents today would flip out if their kids heard about during their nightly dose of child porn on Toddlers and Tiaras. Remember the ones for VD? They were the best! They used funky tunes and hip people to increase awareness of venereal disease. Two of my favs were "VD Gets Around," which featured a cool woman singing about young love and "VD Is For Everybody," which if you didn't know better, could very well have been promoting VD with its lovely images of happy, friendly looking folks and a sing-songy tune. PSAs today just aren't nearly as creative or fun. What a shame. What will today's kids remember? "This is your brain on drugs?" Yawn.

      As my birthday gift to myself and to you all, I'm posting the VD PSAs that I remember and love so well. Enjoy! Happy Birthday, Lolamouse, and remember, "VD is for everybody..."

      Friday, January 7, 2011

      The Big O (No, Not That One!)

      I'm just a vessel for God...
      I was flipping TV channels last night for my evening's mind candy (don't judge!) and came upon OWN, the new Oprah Worship, I mean Winfrey, Network. Out of curiosity and the law of inertia, I remained on OWN and watched for a while. I have come to the conclusion that Oprah Winfrey is a bit scary.

      Unless you live under a rock, and perhaps even if you do, you know that these days Oprah is EVERYWHERE. She has her own TV show, her own magazine, and now her own TV network. She's richer than God and probably more famous. Her visage is pasted all over billboards, television, internet, magazines, and newspapers, and she's one of the most recognizable people anywhere. Her rags to riches story is a tale of self-empowerment, and there are many worse celebrities who could be held up as role models than Oprah. At some point, however, Oprah seems to have slipped down that slippery slope from self-esteem to self-aggrandizement. She sees herself on a "mission" to save the rest of us from our pathetic non-Oprah'd selves. And whenever someone speaks of having a "mission," I start to get worried.

      It's not enough for Oprah to be a TV personality, a movie star, a magazine magnate, a famous celebrity, and a gazillionaire. She sees herself as a "vessel" for God. Oprah isn't doing all of these things for herself; she is doing the Lord's work. And from her recent ubiquity, Oprah could possibly challenge God for omnipresence! The Church of Oprah is spreading across the land, and her followers are tuning in to hear her speak the gospel. Just listen to Oprah and you too can be all you were meant to be. Oprah will tell you what books to read with her book club, what magazines to read ("O," her magazine, obviously), and what shows to watch (you have an entire network from which to choose now). Oprah acolytes will tell you how to manage your money, your relationships, and your health. Just follow, and let your inner Oprah emerge in pseudo-religious, wishy-washy spirituality!

      I have visions of an Oprah tinted future. It has begun with "programming that reflects her world view, her vision for the future, and her very sense of purpose, not just in the media universe, but in the grander scheme of life."  Her divine Oprahness will spread beyond multimedia and reach farther and wider. Soon, there may be Oprah Reeducation Bureaus (ORBs), Oprah Holidays (OHs), Oprah Winfrey's Own for Women (OWOW), a clothing line, Oprah Winfrey Land (OWL) Theme Park,  and, of course, the Oprah Worship Network (OWN), which will begin with the TV station but will expand to include meeting places and internet sites for followers of Oprah to study her teachings and eventually become certified Oprah masters (OMs). Conversely, those who don't hop on the bandwagon, Oprah Doubters and Deniers (ODDs) and Oprah Unbelievers and Taitors (OUTs), will soon find themselves outcasts from society.

      Before we find ourselves with a close-up of Oprah's face on our next $100 bill, I suggest we think about whether any one person should be so influential. Sure, I give the woman props for the good works that she's done. And her personal story is inspirational. But it should inspire us to find our own personal bliss in our own time, not because Oprah says we should. If Oprah's book club got you into a book store or library for the first time in years, great! Now, after you've finished one of her picks, find some books that inspire you that aren't on her list. In a true spiritual paradox, to achieve genuine Oprahness is to do whatever the hell you want to do and not give a damn what Oprah says.

      Tuesday, January 4, 2011

      What Does Your Condom Say About You?

      Ladies, how many times has this scenario happened to you? You're in your favorite trendy bar. Suddenly, you spot some gorgeous hunk of man meat across the room and advance upon said specimen to introduce yourself. You chat for a bit, and he graciously buys you a couple of expensive cocktails. You see no ring on his finger and no tell-tale tan line where a ring should be. You hightail it out of the bar back to his place in his Porsche. He takes you up to his apartment, in a very high-rent part of town. You glance around his place and notice chic furnishings and upscale artwork on the walls. Now it's go-time. You slink back to his bedroom with him and fall upon his king sized bed with the 500 count Egyptian cotton sheets. He reaches over to his nightstand and discreetly grabs...A TROJAN?!! Oh, hell no. Game over. You're outta there right NOW!

      Or gentlemen, does this vignette sound all too familiar? You've scored a table at the newest and most desirable restaurant in town. You and your date haughtily walk past the throngs of peons trying to make a reservation for months from now and enter the dining establishment. You give the maitre de your name and a hundred dollar bill and are escorted to a premium table where you can see and be seen. You order an uber-expensive bottle of wine and hope to get your date a little drunk. The lady you've chosen to accompany you this evening is lovely; she's from a wealthy family, attended an Ivy League school, has a well-paying job, and is a knock-out! She's dressed in a tasteful yet expensive dress, with jewelery to match. Just perfect. After dinner you head back to your place as planned. She's a bit tipsy, as planned. One thing leads to another, and out of her Ferragamo clutch she pulls out...A DUREX CONDOM?!! Oh, hell no. You feign food poisoning and get her out of your apartment immediately!

      You drive an expensive car. You live in an expensive house or apartment. You eat at the best restaurants. You wear only the finest clothes. Why should you settle for anything other than THE BEST CONDOM?!! That's why 2 French aristocrats decided to introduce a luxury condom to the market. Company vice president Count Gil de Bizemont, who co-founded the Original Condom Co., with His Royal Highness the Prince Charles Emmanuel de Bourbon Parm, claims that there is a demand for prestige in prophylactics. "There [is] always a need for quality, good taste (insert sophmoric joke here!) and beautiful objects."  "Condoms protect everyone from disease, ours protect from tackiness," stated G. de Bizemont.  And isn't that really the most important thing? Any old condom can prevent sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy, but how many can look good while doing it? How many condom brands would you be proud to carry around in your pocket or purse? How many come with their own faux black suede pocket or elegant display box, inspired by the world of jewelery? Or, as one of the founders of the company asks, would you be proud to have a "traditional" condom on your table when Mom visits? This, of course, makes me question why he would have any condom out on a table when his mother visits. Um, yuck.

      The Original Condom is pricey, as any luxury good can be expected to be. One condom is $2.00, the "Pocket," which contains 3 condoms and can be refilled, is $13.50, and the "Regular," which is a  refillable box, contains 6 condoms for $20.00.  Instead of a tacky, foil envelope shouting "RIBBED FOR HER PLEASURE," these precious gems are neatly packaged in discreet, little black boxes or packets, more like English tea than a contraceptive. The company expects they will be sold at "finer" hotels and restaurants, as well as online. No gas station restrooms for these babies! Those of us with high standards owe a debt of gratitude to the founders of this company for finally allowing us to differentiate riff-raff rubbers from prestige prophylactics. We now have one more weapon in our arsenal to strain out the commoners from our pool of possible sexual partners. Bravo!


      Sunday, January 2, 2011

      MVP: Most Valuable Prisoner

      Does it bother anyone that President Obama has chosen Michael Vick as his mascot for opening a national discussion on prisoner rehabilitation and reentry? It sure as hell bothers me. I know that Obama has spoken in the past of better social, educational, and vocational support for criminals who have served their sentences. He has encouraged businesses to hire ex-criminals as well, so his phone call to Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie to congratulate him on giving Vick a second chance is not counter to his previously stated beliefs. However, lauding Michael Vick as a model of redemption and rehabilitation is just a joke.

      President Obama reportedly said that "it's never a level playing field for prisoners when they get out of jail." He, therefore, wanted to praise the Eagles for giving Vick the second chance that many ex-cons don't get. I wonder why so many former criminals don't get the same kind of second chance that Michael Vick got? Could it possibly be that they aren't skilled quarterbacks who could potentially rake in millions of dollars for a team and its owner? Could it be that they don't have the name recognition, be it good or bad, that Michael Vick has that will draw fans to his games? Could it be that people are much more likely to give someone a second (or even a third or fourth) chance when he or she has money than when the person is poor?

      If President Obama really wanted to single out someone as an example of rehabilitation, could he not have chosen someone who perhaps went back to school or learned a trade and can now make a decent but honest living? Could he not have highlighted a typical employer who took a chance on hiring an ex-convict and found himself with a dependable and skilled new employee? Why did he have to fall into the celebrity and pro-sports figure worship trap that blinds so many people to the real lives of the real people all around them?

      Michael Vick's crimes were despicable. He got another chance because he's famous. I hope for his sake, for the sake of everyone who now is holding him up as the shining example of prison rehabilitation, but especially for the sake of all the ex-cons who now will be judged by his behavior, that he lives up to the hype.