Monday, December 26, 2011

TOM...

It’s that time of the month don’t even mess with me. Oh, let's keep it real. People don't care how you feel. Every little thing (Everything) God may heal it. Where's a piece of mind when you need it, oh Lord. When does it end. I can't be bothered, not even with my friends. There's a lot of things going through my head. Just wanna go home and go to bed. It’s that time of the month don’t even mess with me. –Angie Stone

We’re going to talk about periods. You know because it’s so Christmas-y and Holiday-ish. I can’t remember why I started thinking about this, likely a random conversation with a friend of mine. But here is.

Ms. Stone in all her bluesy, neo-soul wisdom, speaks the truth. I loathe getting my period. I loathe it. I hate the cramps, the bloating, the gas, the tampons, the pads, and the just the all around grossness of it all. Please do not get me started on the scorching case of PMS. Because I have no idea what the fuck is up with that. Why I am so hungry (starving), horny (all night like a trucker), tired (full 10 hours and still exhausted) and weepy (anything can set me off, a song, a commercial, story on the news you name it.)? I prefer to be in control of my emotions thank you very much. However, each month for about a week, scratch that, week and half to two weeks, me and my emotions are all over the place (happysadangryhappysadangryhappysadangry). There is nothing worse than feeling like I have no control over my emotions. It’s maddening.

I remember being 12 and wondering when it would come. My friends had started to get their periods and I wanted mine. Really really wanted it. Bad. I had read Are You There God It’s Me Margaret, by Judy Blume. This was one of Margaret’s obsessions, to get her period. Getting her period, developing breasts, finding God and fitting in. I had breasts, I was being raised Catholic and didn’t know that I had other options, and the social weirdness hadn’t yet started so I was ok. Let’s face it; getting your period is big deal. It’s when you physically start to change from being a little girl to becoming a woman. In the interest of this post, I did a little googling. Kids, I found a link to the Museum of Menstruation and Women’s Health. I swear to you. I am not making this up. it’s a strange little website run by a dude. WTF?

Anyway, I learned that some traditional Jewish mothers slap their daughters across the face when they get their first period. They are trying to slap her into sense, warning her not to get pregnant before she gets married. In other cultures getting your period is a reason for celebration. Well, I didn’t get slapped or celebrated. I didn’t get “the talk” either. My mother just showed me how to use a pad and that was pretty much it. I over heard her telling my father that my period had come. I remember his reaction was sort of…muted. I’m not sure how to explain it really. Not angry or sad, but resigned I guess. I have heard that some men look at their daughters differently once they start menstruating.

Anyway, I was 13 when “it” showed up and I have been pretty much regretting it ever since. This leap into womanhood came with blinding migranes, not the “slight discomfort” that I had read about. When I got older and starting having sex, I started being grateful for my period. Whew, NOT pregnant. Bit that bullet. As I have got older and was in relationships that I took seriously, occasionally Aunt Flo would show up and that sense of relief wasn’t the same. It was tinged with a little bit of sadness. Oh. Not pregnant. Whew? As the circumstances of your life change, the arrival of your period starts to take on a different meaning. A married woman who has been trying to get pregnant with out success, likely is isn’t happy to see that pink tinged toilet tissue. Whereas a woman with two almost grown children will probably weep with joy when Aunt Flo shows up, albeit late, to the party.

Now that I’m almost 40 it’s starting to change, my cycle, the flow, how I feel before during and after. I am in the beginnings of perimenapause. Great. Peri is that bitch that shows up and hangs out with you for the 10-15 years before Menopause takes over. Awesome. I won’t lie, now that she’s on her way out; I think I’m going to miss Aunt Flo. She’s not my favorite aunt for sure, but she’s been pretty trust worthy. I have been able to count on her showing up every 28 to 31 days. Occasionally, she’s tried to fake me out (i.e.; scare the crap out of me and my partner) and shown up after 40 days. But we’ve been through it all Flo and me. She’s shown up early while I’m wearing white jeans. She’s shown up right before dates. She’s shown up when I didn’t have any products in the house and had to “make do” and make a Tampax run. In all fairness that only happens to you once maybe twice before you never let that happen to you again. I mean me and Flo have been together for a lot of years now. And now she’s on the verge of abandoning me. I don’t know this Peri person and I’m pretty sure she and I are not going to get along. While I’ve dreaded those monthly visits, to a certain extent getting your period is associated with youth, vitality and potential. And now that it’s changing, that youth, vitality and potential is sort of waning a little bit.

All that being said, cramps still suck.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

'Cause I'm a WOMAN

I can wash out forty-four pairs of socks and have 'em on the line. I can starch and iron two dozen shirts ‘fore you can count from one to nine. I can slip up a great big dip up of lard from a drippings can. Throw it in the skillet, do my shopping be back before it melts in the pan. 'Cause I'm a woman W O M A N.
I'll say it again. – Peggy Lee


Do we remember this song? Or better yet the 1980’s Enjoli commercial, based on the Peggy Lee song? She does it all. She brings home the bacon, fries it up in the pan. And never, ever let’s you forget you’re a man. I feel like this image of women has made it hard to be a woman. I know it’s dated. But how dated is it really? I think that there are a lot of men who want a woman like this, and I think there are just as many women to strive to be that woman, and are very hard on themselves when they fall short. Jesus. I am no feminist. But I don’t think I was put on earth to be a man’s “helpmate” either.

Last week, after a 4-week break, I ventured back to group it felt good, but weird. (The weirdness is in my head)

The girlfriend of one of the men in my group is moving in with him. She is moving from her city to his and they are co-habitating. He seems pleased about this turn that their relationship is taking, and I’m glad for him. I think he’s a good dude and he has had his share of relationship woes. He said something that was interesting; he said that while he appreciated many things about her, one of the things he realized meant a lot to him was her prowess as a homemaker. He appreciated her desire to make things “just so.” Since I was the only woman in the room, they all looked at me. “Is that sexist”? I thought about it and said that I guessed not, but I asked the question, is that what men want? A good housekeeper? His response to me was that he didn’t know that’s what he wanted in a woman until he met her and saw that was how she was built. And since she was that way, it worked for him. He does not strike me as sexist in the least. It seems that he was pleasantly surprised to find a woman who was smart, sexy and had mastered the art of making things “just so”. Fair enough. However, on my way home I couldn’t stop thinking about it.

What do men want in women? This is old question, and there are as many answers to it as there are men. I’m just wondering. I have always gone on the premise that I should just be myself. Entre nous, that hasn’t worked out very well. I don’t know what kind of homemaker I would be. I’m lived alone and have managed to take care of myself just fine, but I mean what would I be like as a wife and mother. Would I cook? Yes I would. I love to feed people. I cook and bake from scratch. I am a sender of the Christmas baked goods. I also really like knowing what you like so that it can be here for you if you want it. Would I clean? Meh. While I like a clean house, I hate keeping house. I am, however, particular about a few things. My closets for one, I only use the felt, Joy Mangano hangers. Clothing is arranged by category; pants, shirts, skirts, dress, which are then sub organized by work/ casual. All items are hung going in the same direction. My shoes are in clear plastic boxes with a photo and label on the box. My crafting stuff is SUPER organized. I have very defined categories and everything is labeled. I have a binder marked important documents, with plastic sleeves with a label identifying each item. Eh heh. Clearly there are some things that need to have be “just so”. It looks crazy when I have it all outlined in this way.

The thing is, the hyper organization is beneath the mess. I usually have so much stuff on the floor of the bedroom that I have to sort of make a path for myself to get around. The other side of the bed usually has a pile of laundry that never gets put away. It’s not dirty, but it IS a mess. I hate a messy kitchen or bathroom, so I make the effort in those areas. But other than that not so much. Does this make me somehow less desirable as a partner? Would I be less or more desirable if didn’t cook? Like is it ok if I cook, but don’t clean? Do the two things go together? If I didn’t cook or clean but wanted to have sex all the time and watch football, would that cancel every thing else out? I don’t know. Again, I am just wondering. Let’s say you could spread out all the parts of a woman’s personality on a table and you could build a woman. What would be the standard parts? What would be options? Women could do the same thing of course. If I could build my dream man, what would have to come standard? What would be bells and whistles? This is silly of course, as we can’t build our dream partner. But sometimes I think if I knew what was desired I could figure out where I fell on the list of must haves and can’t stands.

Few years ago I read, Act Like A Lady Think Like A Man, by Steve Harvey. Have I ever said how much I can’t stand him? He and Dr. Phil are both full of all this folksy wisdom, but never seem to capture anything significant. Steve says that it’s important to make a man feel like a man. I don’t know exactly what that means. Could it mean that I should leave him to the wood chopping while I churn the butter? Does it mean that I should thank him for watching his (our) children? He says this explicitly and even provides a charming example of how is own wife did just that. Excuse me while a rant for a moment---FUCK THAT. We are a family, we should all do our share. If you think for just one second that I am going to thank you for taking care of our children you have another thing coming. However, I am not married and have no children. Hmmm. Still it bugs me. That, that might be what is asked of me. So be grateful that my husband and father of our children need to be thanked for doing his share.

There is something…miraculous about a woman who can do it all. How remarkable, what a find, what a wonder she can do it all! She can be mommy, be sexy, be smart, be accomplished and be his. I would like to believe that most men don’t want wives from Stepford. I would like to believe that the roles of men and women have changed with the times. I would like to believe that as a woman, I am not regulated to the role of nanny and maid. I’d like to believe all those things. However, here is what I do know. While we have changed, we haven’t changed THAT much.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Magic Numbers...

Three is a magic number, yes it is, it's a magic number. Somewhere in the ancient, mystic trinity you get three as a magic number. The past and the present and the future. Faith and hope and charity, the heart and the brain and the body, give you three as a magic number. It takes three legs to make a tri-pod or to make a table stand. It takes three wheels to make a vehicle called a tricycle. Every triangle has three corners, every triangle has three sides, no more, no less, you don't have to guess. When it's three you can see it's a magic number. A man and a woman had a little baby (yes, they did). They had three in the family, and that's a magic number. 3-6-9, 12-15-18, 21-24-27, 30. 3-6-9, 12-15-18, 21-24-27, 30. – Three, the Magic Number; School House Rock

Do you remember School House Rock? I LOVED School House Rock. My favorites always had to do with Grammar or History. I was never ever a fan of the math songs. As long as I can remember mathematics has pushed me into a place of angst and panic. I remember the third grade. Miss Peterson’s class. (Random—Peterson went on to date and marry my 7th grade teacher Mr. Grandson. This was quite the scandal. The wedding was in the 8th grade, we were all invited.)

Attempting to learn multiplication tables was one of the most traumatizing experiences I have ever had. No, I’m not kidding nor am I exaggerating. The aforementioned Peterson, useless. My parents were not only useless but they were abusive to boot. I have such vivid memories sitting at the dining room table with the flash cards and them taking turns being either verbally or physically abusive when I, inevitably, got the answer wrong. We’ve all heard the verse from Corinthians right? The one about love?

Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails...But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love.-1 Corinthians 13:4-7, 13

My parents did the opposite of all that. They were just…mean. I can remember my mother asking me why I was so stupid. I can remember my father screaming that I was just not trying. And of course I remember the hitting. Not my father, my mother. She had this move that she did. It was a swoop down and gets her shoe move. It was scary, because I knew what was coming next. Eventually they just sort of gave up. I was eight. My parents give up trying to help me when I was 8 years old. Shame on them. The problem with that was I never got the foundation I needed for what was coming next. I struggled horribly for years with Math. When I got to college I managed to skip it and put it off and put it off. Eventually I gave up on myself. When working, I would do whatever I could to push off any math to colleagues.

When I decided that I would finish my college education, I learned very quickly that there would be none of that at The College of the Damned, at Overpriced University. I have attempted to take math no less than five times. Five times. I wish I could describe the frustration and mind numbing fear, which completely takes over. I would dread going to class, because I knew that I would not be able to keep it together. It was humiliating. A very kind professor suggested to me that I might have a mathematics related learning disability. Great, just what I need in my life, to be a math retard. However, when I thought about it, I thought… umm no, this is GREAT! If it turns out that I have math related learning disability my whole life (as it relates to math and numbers) would make sense. I hit the ground googling and guess what. It’s a real thing. Dyscalculia is a real thing. (Angels singing) Think Dyslexia for numbers. The more I read the more I seemed to have just about every single symptom.

•Frequent difficulties with arithmetic—Check!
•Difficulty with everyday tasks like reading analog clocks—Check!
•Inability to comprehend financial planning or budgeting, sometimes even at a basic level; for example, estimating the cost of the items in a shopping basket or balancing a checkbook---Not so much. While I am bad with money, it’s because I spend too much. I do this ok.
•Difficulty with multiplication-tables, and subtraction-tables, addition tables, division tables, mental arithmetic, etc—Check! Hello, 3rd grade!
•Difficulty with conceptualizing time and judging the passing of time. May be chronically late or early—Check! Early like it’s not even funny.
•Particularly problems with differentiating between left and right—Check! I am the worst at this.
•Might do exceptionally well in a writing related field — many authors and journalists have this disorder. —Check! (I’m going for it, check god dammit, I can write)
•Difficulty navigating or mentally "turning" the map to face the current direction rather than the common North=Top usage—Check! Check. I have to do this with legends all the time. (Remember Joey, from Friends? He had to get IN the map)
•Having particular difficulty mentally estimating the measurement of an object or distance (e.g., whether something is 10 or 20 feet away). —Check! Check! 2 ft, 6 ft, I don’t know.
•Often unable to grasp and remember mathematical concepts, rules, formulas, and sequences—Check!
•Inability to concentrate on mentally intensive tasks—Check!
•Low latent inhibition, i.e., over-sensitivity to noise, smell, light and the inability to tune out, filtering unwanted information or impressions. Might have a well-developed sense of imagination due to this (possibly as cognitive compensation to mathematical-numeric deficits). —Check! I can smell a banana a mile away and the smell makes me retch. My imagination is crazy. The things that I can conjure up.
•Mistaken recollection of names. Poor name/face retrieval. May substitute names beginning with same letter. —Actually not so much. I’m pretty good at names and faces.

I also read that people who have dyscalculia are clumsy. Likely because they can’t judge the distance, but I am hella clumsy. As I kid, I feel down. A LOT.

Anyway, this summer I decided that I would find out for sure, did I or didn’t I? Well boys and girls, the results are in, it is official. I have dyscalculia and I could not be happier. I thought that being diagnosed with a learning disability would make me feel bad or stupid, but I don’t! I feel pretty stellar. Clearly, I wish that I didn’t have this problem. However, like it or not, it is my problem to deal with. My little problem with math has a real name. This makes all difference in the world to me. I felt so…stupid for so long for no reason.

I have opted to forgive the ‘rents on this one. They didn’t know. They should have done a better job and helping me, but they didn’t know any better. Shrinker had suggested that I tell them. But I don’t need to. This was for me. I am certain that the College of the Damned will make sure that I take math in some shape or form, but they have to give me an accommodation. I am A-OK with that.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Group Scene...

I am in group therapy. I’ve been in group therapy for almost 2 years now. And honestly, I look forward to it. It’s nice to speak with people who are not my friends. It is weird though, we’re not friends, but I feel like we know each other really well. During that time, I have learned a lot about myself, and what I have to say. Most importantly, I have been able to sit and listen to what’s going on in the lives of other people. Turns out, that all of us, regardless of what it looks like on the surface, have some heavy stuff to deal with. Of course I knew that, but hearing it has given me a lot of perspective, which is good.

While I enjoy Group and think it has been valuable to me, occasionally, my own stuff gets in the way and start feeling like I shouldn’t be there. No one has said anything. No one has made me feel any particular way. I have always felt welcomed. It’s just me. It doesn’t help that everyone in my group is a Professional person, and I’m still finding my way. I’m finding my way and taking the long, not so scenic, route. Being in a room with 2 doctors, 4 lawyers, an artist and a musician sometimes makes me uneasy. I wonder if they are thinking, WTF is SHE doing HERE? I’ve never really asked Shrinker what he was thinking, placing me in this particular group with these particular people. It seems too late to do so now. Much more than my occasional uneasiness is this fear I have. Sometimes, someone will be speaking and all I can think to myself is ‘Please please don’t ask me what I think.’ Sure enough, he’ll ask me “April, what do you think about what Bob just said?” Ugh. It is inevitable, that at that moment, I will have nothing, not a thing to offer. The blank, not knowing what to say feeling, makes me feel so inarticulate and just plain stupid. I think that my job, in being a part of the group, is to provide insightful, thoughtful feedback. Not to wish I were someplace else.

I told Shrinker that I needed a break. His asked me some very pointed, shrinky questions about my feelings about a new woman in our group. Letting me know that he thinks I don’t want to be in-group because of her. (Not true). He thinks that I find her attractiveness (she’s very pretty) and her success (Lawyer #4) intimidating. Sigh. One time while watching Oprah, I heard Dr. Phil (who I can’t stand) tell a jealous wife, that if she is always worried about her husband finding a more attractive woman, then she was destined to life of unhappiness. There will always be someone prettier than you are. At the risk of sounding like a jerk, any issues I have with my looks have nothing to do with my face. It has everything to do with my fat. So while Lawyer #4 is very attractive, I don’t care and it doesn’t bother me. I do care, and it does bother me, that when she was talking about something that is very painful for her, I couldn’t think of anything to say when asked what I thought. I told Shrinker as much. I don’t know if he bought it. (Shrugs) It’s true though. And frankly, I’m not sure how I feel about him (Shrinker) thinking that I am THAT person. At any rate, we (he) decided that would be on sabbatical from group for at least 2 weeks. We shall see…

(Yes, I am going to act as though it hasn’t been 2 months since I’ve posted.)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Mirror Mirror on the wall...

Erised stra ehru oyt ube cafru oyt on wohsi. (I show not your face but your heart's desire)

Mirror, mirror, on the wall, Can't you show me tall and slim? Mirror, mirror, on the wall, Must I look so bloody grim? Mirror, mirror, on the wall, You're distorting my poor waist! Mirror, mirror, on the wall, And why the heck am I defaced? Mirror, mirror, on the wall, Why have I a double chin? Mirror, mirror, on the wall, And what's the stupid, goofy grin? Mirror, mirror, on the wall, Pointless asking ‘Who’s the fairest? – More bloody likely, 'Who’s the queerest? Now look, I paid a big bucks for thee, So why can’t you be nice to me? Mirror, mirror, on the wall, Who’s the fairest of them all? Me, you say? Ah, that's better – Mirror, mirror, bloody fibber! –Mirror Mirror Bloody Fibber, by Mark Slaughter

Just a short post or maybe just a random musing. (That’s what most posts are aren’t they?) Anyway I’m in a weird mood, sort of contemplative. A little blue even. Lately, I find myself in a place of longing… I’ve said this before and I will say this till I’m done with Project me. I need everything in my life to be different. I want to see something better when I look at myself in the mirror. I was close my eyes at night and feel satisfaction. Right now I have no satisfaction. My mind races every night. I think of all the things that I want. I think of all the things that I still need to do. I don’t just mean the dry cleaning, though I think of that as well, but I mean ALL the things. Figure out this weight loss thing, thinking of ways to get through my education faster.

The other day I started to reread (yes reread—sometimes I pick up books that I love—and I love Harry Potter, I promise to discuss that later—open them up to a random page and start reading. WHAT?) Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's stone. Anyway Harry comes across a mirror, the Mirror of Erised. The Mirror of Erised (Which if you noticed is desire spelled backwards) is a magic mirror, which shows the deepest and most desperate desire of ones heart. The happiest person in the world would look in the mirror and see a reflection of exactly the way he or she is. As Harry has no real family to speak of, he sees himself surrounded by family---his parents in particular. His friend Ron sees himself being the star of his life. Dumbledore says he sees himself holding warm socks. He’s lying of course… but you get what I mean.

I wonder, what I would see if I had the mirror of Erised? If I let myself, I can imagine what I would see. I think I would see myself, fit, healthy and pretty. I’d have a husband by side, baby at my hip and a toddler running laps around us. Out of anything that I could wish for, I wish for that. Sure I have crazy things that run through my head. Like what? Lots of things. I would have loved to live in a kibbutz, visited an ashram, learned how to drive a racecar and then some. However, at the end of the day, what I really want is good health, a man who loves me, and kids who call me momma.

Alas, I have no mirror, and no access to magic. It’s just me who needs to figure out way to keep working harder so that good things will happen for me.

Accio the desired life…

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Puppets, excuse me, Muppets, aren't people...

Come and play. Everything's A-OK. Friendly neighbors there, that's where we meet, Can you tell me how to get…How to get to Sesame Street? It's a magic carpet ride, every door will open wide to happy people like you--Happy people like…What a beautiful…Sunny Day, sweeping' the clouds away. On my way to where the air is sweet, can you tell me how to get…How to get to Sesame Street? - Sesame Street Lyrics



Give me a break. Can someone just please…sigh. Ok. So earlier this week, a friend of mine posted his frustration at the notion of the possible nuptials of Bert and Ernie. I swear to you, I thought he was just being a jerk, and I told him so. Then I heard on the news, that it was a real movement. Ummm kids? Bert and Ernie are puppets. They aren’t gay or straight for that matter. They are felt. Perhaps the Pro Felt or the Anti Felt people would like to chime in on this serious issue.

The purpose of Bert and Ernie is to show two friends, two best friends, learning how to give and take and accept each other for who they are. Bert is the serious, responsible and steadfast one. He’s quirky, with his love of pigeons, stamps and paperclips. Ernie is decidedly, much less serious. Ernie is the flighty one he is much less responsible and much more childlike. Ernie is about the rubber ducky and his sax. Bert and Ernie are not about sex, gay or otherwise.

Here is what I understand. People want there to be an honest reflection of real families in film and television, including programming for children. I personally think that society would only benefit from learning that there are all kinds of people who help in making up all types of families. Having the knowledge that there are two women who love each other doesn’t mean that your daughter is going be lesbian. More likely than not, it means that your kid will grow up to be a tolerant, understanding and accepting individual. Isn't that what we want, to be a part of a benevolent society? I hate to sound like such the idealist, I know it’s not all that easy, but hate mongering comes from ignorance and fear doesn’t it? Once you know that something different won’t hurt you, there is not much to fear, is there? More and more, there are families that are different than our own. What is wrong exactly, with knowing that some families have 2 daddies, 2 mommies, one of each, just one, or none--- some kids grow up with Aunts and/or Grandparents? Quite frankly, that’s just an accurate portrayal of what real life is like. Hey you, person who is shaking your head at me---face facts, the world is changing and you can’t stop it. It would behoove you to open up your mind and be more accepting and understanding. After all, these are the people in your neighborhood. They’re the people that meet, when you’re walking down the street. They're the people that you meet each day. (Please tell me you got that?)

I have no doubt that the good people at Sesame Street, could (and I think should) figure out a way to introduce same sex parent families—that does not involve puppets. It would serve a greater service to show real flesh and bone actors portraying positive gay characters, than it would be to take beloved characters such as Bert and Ernie, and change the meaning of their relationship. Besides, don’t we want kids to learn that you can be “just” friends? Friendship is important, just as important as family. You choose your friends. Family is a crapshoot.

One last thing, if I may…they’re puppets kids. Puppets. Come ON!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

What can you say about Casey Anthony that hasn't been said...

Mother you had me, but I never had you. I wanted you but you didn’t want me. So I got to tell you goodbye. Goodbye. - “Mother”, John Lennon

Casey Anthony. What can you say about this case, where, frankly, no one won?
Here is what we know, the Anthony’s last saw their grand-daughter in June of 2008. They would not see their daughter or grand-daughter for a month. During that same time Casey’s car was picked up and there was a noticeable smell of something decomposing coming from the trunk. Cindy Anthony, mother to Casey and grandmother to Caylee, pushed and got her daughter to admit that Caylee had been missing for 31 days. Cindy called 911 to report her granddaughter missing, also reporting the smell of death in the car. We know that when questioned, Casey lied repeatedly to her family and to authorities about just about everything. When asked who had her child, she said Zenida Fernandez Gonzalez. Lie. When asked where she worked, she said Universal Studios. Lie. Further, during the time that she knew, but didn’t know, where her little girl was, she was seen and photographed partying and having a grand old time.

Casey is then arrested for making false official statements, obstructing an investigation and child neglect. And so began the circus that finally ended this past July, with Casey being acquitted of all felony charges (i.e., of first-degree murder, aggravated manslaughter, and aggravated child abuse). However she was convicted of misdemeanor charges of giving false information to police. Casey Anthony was released about a week after the trial, and is pretty much going to live her life the way she wants to. Or will she? There is some debate on this. Some people suggesting that eventually she will get to live out a quiet life, other people suggesting that she will eventually meet her end, either by her own hand or by someone else’s.

I hadn’t planned on posting about the Anthony case. I was disgusted and feeling like I couldn’t say anything new. I understand that sometimes, common sense tells us that someone probably did something bad. (i.e., Murder) However, I also understand that “probably” isn’t good enough. Like we’ve heard them say on Law and Order, the prosecution needs to prove beyond a reasonable doubt, that this woman did something. And like it or not, regardless of what your gut tells you, they didn’t. However, this morning I saw in the paper that, Casey was spotted in Ohio, shopping at a local Old Navy store. And for whatever reason, seeing her photo wearing a red baseball cap, checking her cell phone (I would love to know, besides her lawyer, who the hell is calling her?) and frankly the very notion that she is just living her life, like a regular person, enraged me so much it scared me. I am so not that person.

I am firm in my belief that just because you give birth does not mean that you are a REAL Mother. Anyone can push a baby out... it takes someone extraordinary to be a real parent. We all know don’t we, that either she did something vile to that child or knows who did and let them. I am not in the habit of wishing evilness on people. But parenting and doing a job by your kid, is the most important thing you can do. Being a parent is a privilege. I believe, regardless of what conclusion a jury came too, that Casey Anthony is guilty of the worst crime there is and I for one, hopes that she will never know a moment of peace. I hope she lives a long guilt riddled life. And when she finally meets her end, that she spends an eternity burning in hellfire where she belongs.

I know that I haven’t said anything new. I just had to say something.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Biggest Loser?

I look into the window of my mind, reflections of the fears I know I've left behind. I step out of the ordinary; I can feel my soul ascending. I am on my way, can't stop me now and you can do the same. What have you done today to make you feel proud? It's never too late to try. What have you done today to make you feel proud? You could be so many people, if you make that break for freedom. What have you done today to make you feel proud? – Proud (Theme to the Biggest Loser, sung by Heather Small)


The Biggest Loser
. I am assuming that everyone is familiar with this show. No? Well let me explain. The premise is that obese people will try out for a chance to be on this show and get the help that they need to lose as much weight as they can. During the time you are on the show you live on a ranch in California, with access to personal trainers who basically kick your ass. If you get chosen you have to leave your friends, family, job, work etc for around 5 months. For many people who are obese, this is a last ditch effort and they are willing to take that chance.

Over the past several weeks I’ve seen television spots for an open casting call for the Biggest Loser. I keep hearing a voice whisper to me “doitdoitdoit” I in turn; have been shouting “shutupshutupshutp”. However, last week I started wondering if it would really be such a bad idea? So Friday morning I studied the casting website and started to fill out the application. I told myself that I could just fill it out, without any obligation. While filling it out my friend/coworker comes up behind me and saw the application and I sort of blurted out… I think I’m going to try out for the Biggest Loser. Her response was… enthusiastic to say the least. She got VERY excited. She missed her calling she should be a cheerleader. There was a lot of doing dancing and telling me that I should do it doitdoitdoit. She would not be deterred, even after I threatened her with violence.

This past Saturday I woke up at the ass crack of dawn and drove the 30 miles to Newark, NJ and tried out for the show. I’m not sure why really; when I have always thought that I would never do something like that. First of all, I am not interested in showing America my girth. I don’t want to stand in front of millions of strangers in my bra and spandex shorts. (Unless your body is really special, it’s just a bad look) Secondly, I couldn’t really afford to not work for a month much less 5 months. But something told me to try. And so I did. I was 94th in line, which is great, when you consider that there must have been well over a 1000 people in line behind me. I was really struck by the amount of people who were there. There are a lot of seriously overweight people out there. It’s tragic. I’m not blind, I know that I am not the only person for whom weight loss is a problem, it’s just seeing so many fat people in one place was just so sad to me. I am a part of that group. Overweight and desperate to make a change, but lacking all the tools to make that change happen. It’s hard to say what I was feeling when I was waiting. I was feeling a lot. Tired (it was early), Nervous, Sheepish, Hungry and Uncertain.

I knew the odds of getting on the show where slim (←ha! I wasn’t even trying!), there are so many people who want this, but what if I did get on? I wouldn’t want to go on and not do well. I wouldn’t want to go on and fail or embarrass myself. The scariest part for me is that I know that in every “reality” show there is that moment. That “poignant” moment where someone has some kind of a breakdown, which leads to a break though, which has likely been edited to hell---so that there is the sad, moving, piano music, with a close up of a fat, sweaty, crying face. Afterwards there is the confessional, where the person is opening up about the real reason regarding their obesity. I HATE that. I always feel like I am spying on a moment that I should not be witnessing. It feels so…contrived! I actually don’t have a real reason for my obesity. There has been no great tragedy in my life. Yes of course there have been heartbreaks and setbacks and letdowns. But we all know a major life calamity don’t we? I haven’t had any. So my only excuse is that at some point, I just began feeding those heartbreaks, setbacks and let downs, rather than facing them head on. The result is…well I am the result.

So what happened? After about 6 long, hot hours about 10 of us got corralled in to a shared meeting space, sat around the table, introduced ourselves, the moderator asked a few questions, and the idea was to sell your-self. Selling myself is not something that I am comfortable with. I’m not sure that I did my “best’. I think I did ok. I said a few things and got some laughs. Other people said things and they got a few laughs. And then it was over. They sent us on our way, letting us know that if were to be called back it would be by 11 pm that evening. I got back in my car, headed the hell out of Newark and back to NY where I belong and waited for the call that never game. While I wasn’t disappointed, I wasn’t quite relieved either. I’m not sure how to describe it either. I was just somewhere in the middle.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Shame on me...

No song for this post...

Sometimes I do things or say things and as soon as I’ve done them or said them I think about it and regret it instantly.

This weekend, while out to dinner with a friend, I noticed our waitress. She sort of reminded me of the type of guy I like. (She really did) so, thinking I was being cute, I texted a friend of mine—a lesbian—and said I think I have girl crush on my waitress. Ha Ha. Right? Wrong. The next day she, rightfully, lit into me. And I deserve it. I’m not a Lesbian. It was just a joke to me. But it’s not funny… it’s someone’s life. Being Gay or Lesbian, is often a struggle for people. I shouldn’t be making a joke of it. Shame on me. Speaking up for the rights of Gays and Lesbians is a choice for me. Not a choice for them. I ought to know better.

I love NYC. However, NYC is not for everyone. Too many people have a hard time here. Few weeks ago I saw Russell Simmons on the street. He was riding in the back seat of car so exclusive and posh, that I had never seen it before. Few days after that I saw Spike Lee also looking very rich and comfortable in his Escalade. I think the week before I had seen Joan Rivers riding in the back seat of a Mercedes. This is not a disparagement about them. Those were just my most recent rich folk sightings. And it speaks to the vast differences between the very wealthy and very poor. I see a ton of wealthy people every day. I also see regular working stiffs, such as myself, and too often I see homeless people and panhandlers. It’s gotten so that I see them but don’t even SEE them anymore. They are just a part of the fabric of the landscape. They make up a part of the city. Good bad and ugly.

Today, someone sent me a link to a video of a homeless woman bathing herself on a subway car. The shock of it was something. She was really going in, if you know what I mean. And first I was just shocked. And then I was in hysterics. And then I started thinking about it. What kind of world do we live in, where that is even happening? NYC is undoubtedly one of the richest cities in the world. Yet this woman, who is homeless and likely disturbed, but somehow has it in her to wish for cleanliness, is forced to do it in public. Someone emailed it to me, I in turn emailed it to other people. And now, I’m ashamed of myself. It’s NOT funny. It’s the worst type of fucked up there is. I consider myself to be a champion for those people who don’t have a voice. And I did something like that? How old am I? What was I thinking?

I pride myself of being fair and open-minded---all that good stuff. And I think that I am. Just every now and then I do something really dumb and insensitive and it makes me wonder where all my good sense has gone.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Your cheatin' heart...

“Your cheatin' heart will make you weep, you'll cry and cry, and try to sleep, but sleep won't come, the whole night through, your cheatin' heart, will tell on you. When tears come down, like falling rain, you'll toss around, and call my name, you'll walk the floor, the way I do, your cheatin' heart, will tell on you. Your cheatin' heart, will pine some day, and crave the love, you threw away, the time will come, when you'll be blue, your cheatin' heart, will tell on you.” -Hank Williams

Good old Hank. There are lots of songs about cheating, doing the cheating, being cheating on, and the aftermath of cheating. Lots of vengeance songs out there too. What do we think of cheaters?

When the scandal of Arnold Schwarzenegger first broke a few weeks ago, I thought to myself, Arnold is a dirty pigman. I wasn’t surprised, but just sort of disgusted. This man not only cheated on his wife Maria Shriver with their live in domestic worker, but also fathered a child. I was overcome with a feeling of ‘Dude, you can’t take it outside? You had fuck the help?’ It is just so… unseemly. However, Arnold as grimy as he is, is in “good” company.

New York Congressman Anthony Weiner is in the middle of a scandal that will likely destroy any his future political aspirations. It’s a shame, that he is basically tossing away his very promising career, because he can’t NOT send pictures of his little Mr. Man to various women on the internet. Is a little self control to much to ask Anthony?

A few more names come to mind when I think of cheating; Elliot Sptizer, Bill Clinton, John Edwards, Gene Simmons, John F. Kennedy, Franklin D. Roosevelt, John McCain, Michael Jordon, Rudy Giuliani, Morgan Freeman, Prince Charles, James Cameron, Jesse James and Tiger Woods have not only cheated, but gotten caught doing so.

The question is why do men cheat? Yes, of course women cheat, however since I am a woman, who deals with men and this is my post on my blog, we’re going to talk about men who cheat. My own unscientific poll tells me that most men cheat. Almost every woman I know and every woman I asked if they have ever had a husband/boyfriend cheat on them answered yes. I remember years ago during that whole Clinton/ Lewinsky debacle, the topic came up at a dinner party. Mind you I was with my boyfriend at that time. I said something like well all men poke around so I’m not surprised. The men in the room were surprised at that statement. I got a lot of “April I’ve never…” Maybe those guys didn’t (I doubt that) but many many men do or have. It seems to me that many men, again, maybe not ALL, but many, maybe even most men cheat. By now you know that I Google everything. It’s my go to response. Don’t know? Google. I thought it might be interesting to Google just that, “Why do men cheat”? I started to type in Why do…and the men cheat part populated for me. Clearly enough people do so that the good people at Google deemed it prudent to populate the question for us.

The effects of cheating are significant and far reaching. It causes significant damage to your family, your relationship and how other people view you. We live in an age where people can send images of themselves across the country, across the world. Is that cheating? I don’t know. But I’m sure that Weiner’s wife thinks that it is cheating. I’m sure she feels violated. I have a friend whose husband spent an inordinate amount of time sexting and sex skyping and sex-IM-ing as well as sending pictures of HIS little Mr. Man. I can assure you she feels cheated on and violated.

I came across some information from M.Gary Neuman, who is according to his website is a “licensed psychotherapist and rabbi” as well as Oprah’s main expert on all things cheating. He says that that basically one in three men cheat. One in three. Further, the wife (girlfriend, partner) will never know about it. As a woman who has been cheated on, the question of course is why? While I think we know this, but the answer isn’t sex. Most men said that it was an emotional disconnection. A sense of feeling underappreciated. Hmph. Again, as a woman who adored the man that she was with, as woman who showed him every way I knew how that I loved him and wanted him and appreciated him (for frankly doing nothing) this statement makes me angry. It seems to put the ownership on the woman. Like we don’t do enough to make you feel good about being the big strong man. Sigh. Perhaps I am still feeling scorned. Here is a little lesson. Life gets in the way. We should never take each other for granted, however the garbage needs taking out, the kids diapers need to be changed, dinner needs to be made and the laundry folded and put away. I don’t always have time to say thank you. This does not mean I don’t love you. It means I’m busy taking care of our life. You should not use that as an excuse to philander.

I mean it when I say that cheating is far reaching. My father is a serial cheater or at least he was—he’s getting a little long in the tooth now and is not as handsome or charming as he once was. His cheating affected our family terribly. It affected the way I feel about him. It’s affected the way I interact men. Once after a woman called our house and left the vilest of vile messages on our machine, I took it upon myself to toss him out. I was disgusted, disappointed and so angry. Like really? Its one thing to do what you do outside, quite another to let the garbage come into your home. You hate your wife? Fine. But your job as a father is to protect your kids. My brother was 8. I was 17. Fuck you Daddy. Get out. (Which is pretty much what I said) My mother did nothing, said nothing and eventually took him back. I have remained resentful of this my entire life.

As long as there have been committed relationships there have been people who violate them. I don’t think there is cure for this one.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Life is made of sticom like moments...

Gather around Boys and Girls, for April has a story. New York City is the type of place where something happens every single moment. Many of those moments happen on the subway. This is one of the reasons why I love love love NY.

Earlier this week I was watching CNN and the reprehensible Paris Hilton was on with her mother, Kathy. (I really dislike Paris) Piers Morgan asked Miss Hilton what her empire consists of and she ran down the list. Fashion, House wares blah blah blah. As I turned the channel I thought to myself, who on earth would buy anything Paris Hilton.

Well kids, this morning on the subway I had a Paris Hilton bag sighting. It was a white messenger type bag with PARIS HILTON written over and over in multicolored grafiti style. “WTF”? I said to myself and decided to take a picture to share with all of you. The problem was that this woman wearing the offending bag was kind of far and at a strange angle. The thing is, when you are being a judgmental picture taking bitch, you don’t want people to see you being a judgmental picture taking bitch.

I had it my mind that I needed to be stealth. I needed to be slick. I needed to be incognito. So I sort of angled myself so that I could take the picture. So I snap a first picture. Meh, it was blurry. In my infinite wisdom, I opted to push my luck and snap another one. Of course the Universe was not going to be kind so of course the train jerked and my phone went flying… and landed inside the bag of the sleeping lady next to me. Awesome.

Let me explain and say that it wasn’t her purse, it was her “other bag”. Do women outside of the NYC have the “other bag”? The Other bag holds books or lunch or the good shoes. Anyway, what the hell do I do? I looked around and the guy who likely had been watching me NOT be slick, stealth or incognito is hysterical laughing. My new best friends says to me: “She's sleeping just take it out. If she didn’t wake up when it hit her, she won’t wake up at all.” I was torn... what to do? So I take the advice of the strange man, who at this point is my lighthouse in some serious fog, and reach into the lady's bag. Do I even need to say what happened next? Sleeping dogs never lie for very long, and of course she woke up and saw me. “What the hell are you doing?” No wait, I stammered as I tried to explain. My phone fell into your bag, see?” Sure enough, she looked down and saw the unfamiliar phone in her bag and thrust it at me while giving me the dirtiest of looks. I apologized over and over... I’m really really sorry…

She didn’t care. Sleeping Asian woman and I would never be friends and I can’t say that a blame her. I mean, what would YOU do if you woke up and saw a stranger rummaging through your bag? I settled in and just sort of tried to make myself as small as possible. Meanwhile my beacon of light, is still laughing. Likely excited to get to work where he can tell his coworkers about the crazy bitch he met this morning.

Right before she gets off the sleeping Asian woman looked at me and calls me a “fucking weirdo”. I don't blame her at all. I am fucking weirdo, not because I took the picture, not because I rummaged in a strangers bag and got caught. But because I think that shit is funny as hell!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

It's a nice day for a white wedding...

“…It's a nice day to start again. It's a nice day for a white wedding. It's a nice day to start again.” – Billy Idol, White Wedding

I know, so obvious right? With so many real wedding songs to choose from and I choose Billy Idol’s White Wedding. A. I loved that song as a kid. B. When I was thinking that I might write about the “Wedding of the Century” I kept hearing that song. So, sorry…

I’m weird about celebrity things. I straddle the line of caring and not caring. I mostly tend to lean towards NOT caring. I don’t read People. I don’t read Life & Style. I seldom watch Extra or ET. I will admit to watching the red carpet of award shows. I love the fashion show that accompanies these shows. This leaves me to the biggest fashion show of them all. The Wedding of Kate and Wills. Listen, I wouldn’t go as far as to say that I care, but I am very very interested. So maybe I do care a little. This is what I wanted to see, in order of importance.

1. The Wedding Dress
2. Wedding Guest Hats (How is it possible that I can't find a decent link for this?

That’s it. I wanted the dress to be amazing and it was. It was also exquisite and very Grace Kelly-esqe. Sarah Burton of The House of Alexander McQueen did not disappoint. Lee would be proud. As an amateur of fashion, I’m sorry he’s not here to see what his protégé created. She did an amazing job.

I am not a fan of weddings. Sure, weddings are great venues for the expression of all the love and joy and love and more of that damn joy that is supposed to exist. I’m not quite dead inside yet. I just find them to be long and boring. Even while I watching the ceremony on television (oh TV how I missed you!) I drifted in and out. Bor-ing!

While I am not a huge fan of weddings, let me clear and say that I LOVE wedding dresses. I have a picture of my dream dress. Likely never to be worn but it’s beautiful. Carolina Herrera. 2004 Spring Collection. Classy yet risky. Edgy yet pretty. Perfectly perfect in every way. Badass yet appropriate.

Can we talk about the hats at this wedding? I love hats and even more, I love the fascinator. What? You don’t know what a fascinator is? Please let me… A fascinator is a sort of a type hat. Usually just perched a top your head. They look like this:


Don’t ask me why, but I love them. I’m dying for a reason to wear one. There is no occasion coming up on my social calendar that warrants a fascinator. Can I wear one to work?

I wonder at what point I am going get sick of all this Royal Wedding talk? The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (The Queen gave them their new tittles. Meh. I like Princess Kate. ) have been married for about 24 hours now, and I am starting to have enough of them.

Operative word being “Starting”.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Don't you talk to me about work...

“…How many dollars, how many sales, how many liars, how many tales, how many insults must you take in this one life? I'm in prison most of the day. So please excuse me, if I get this way. But I have got obligations to keep. So be very careful when you speak. Don't talk to me about work. Please don't talk to me about work. I'm up to my eyeballs in dirt, with work, with work. Please don't talk to me about work. Don't you talk to me about work. I'm up to my eyeballs in dirt. With work, with work.” –Lou Reed (Don’t Talk To Me About Work)

Today is “Professional Administrative Professional’s Day. And I am an Administrative “professional”. Also known as a Professional Lackey. I had the best conversation with a coworker of mine today. Let’s call her…The Italian Spitfire. (She is really one of my favs) We instant message all day long. It’s amazing that we get any work done. I heart her. It started like this:

The Italian Spitfire (TIS): Happy Admin Professionals Day. (Smiley face not smiling but looking stern)
April: Oh geez. Well back at you.
TIS: Blah. Thanks.
A: Oh TIS. Really? This is US? This is what we do?
TIS: I don’t think it gets more boring than that.

And she starts with an imagined conversation. (We do a lot of that. It amuses us.)

TIS:
Imagined person #1: Hi, what do you do?
Imagined person #2: I’m an administrative professional.
IP#1: Oh, what does that mean?
IP#2: It means I am a Lackey.
April: Ha! Professional lackey-ism
TIS: We are professional in what we lack, and we lack the following:
1. Good pay;
2. Good vacation;
3. Mental stimulus;
4. Proper recognition for basically wiping peoples asses for them.

She goes on, while lamenting our sad situation, to tell me about some people her husband has recently met. Actors, music teachers, store owners, writers. Nary an administrative professional in the bunch. I know very few people who started out as AA’s who really wanted to be an AA. Administrative work is the classic default job. Can’t find a job in the field that you want? Take an admin job. Every higher up needs someone to do their bidding for them. Long ago women had few choices. Teacher. Secretary. Nun. Wife/Mother. That’s it. However, those days are gone. Women have their choice of careers. We may still get 70 cents on the dollar for the privilege of doing the same job that a man does, but we can be whatever we want.

Random tid bit: The only industries where women make more money than men, is in Porn and Modeling. Yes it’s true. And both industries are run mostly, by men. So the lesson is that as a woman you are rewarded for being objectified. By men. Nice.

This is not a complaint about the people I work for. I’m actually extremely lucky to have decent bosses. And let me tell you now that I know it. I support two people; Charlie, a kind hearted curmudgeon, for whom technology is his nemesis (I have to talk him through printing documents. No. I’m not kidding). We are about to switch email platforms and I am scared about what this means for the quality of my life at the work place. My other boss is Laureen, an also kind hearted, yet neurotic woman with a flair for fashion and unfortunately a problem with flatulence. While they both can drive me crazy, neither one is mean spirited or nasty, and for that I am grateful. I’ve been in exactly the opposite situation and that is a breakdown waiting to happen. So Charlie, The Technophobe and Laureen, The Flatulent are not the problem. I am the problem.

It has nothing to do with the people that I work for, but more so WHAT, I do for living. There is NO fulfillment in it for me. None. Nada. Rien. I know that if I don’t like it I should change it. And I am doing my best.

But today on this, Administrative Professionals day, it is just a reminder of what I hate about my day to day. While I am certain that the change is coming, I wish it would just hurry up already.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

They're baaaaaaaack.... Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield

Recently, Blogger extraordinaire Stephanie Faris posted about young adult Novels. This got me thinking of my very favorite: Sweet Valley High series. Oh how I loved those books. I started reading about them when I was about 11 or 12. I devoured them until I was about 14 or so. I just outgrew them. When I started to write this post, I did a little googling. (I love to Google) The last book I remember reading was the 25th installment in the series, “Nowhere to Run”, which came out in 1986. According to the Sweet Valley website, there are a total of 143 books, not including several “Special Editions”. Apparently I gave in to smut pretty early on. I passed on the first 25 novels to my younger cousin. She had just moved to Florida from Haiti and I just new she would love t hem as much as I did. Of course she did. I think I tried to read some of the Sweet Valley High College books, but by then I had moved on to Jackie Collins. Who cares what Liz and Jess are up to, if you can read about the antics of Lucky Santangelo? No contest.

Well kids, Francine Pascal is back. (Apparently she never really went away, I just stopped reading her) And so are Jessica and Elizabeth. Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later is coming out (in hard cover—no less) on March 29, 2011. I won’t lie to you I am getting this book. This takes place 10 years after they have graduated High School and they are now in their late 20’s. Yes, yes, I am well aware that I am hurtling towards 40 at an alarming rate; however I am totally up for this book.

According to the Daily Beast, there is sex in this one. Does Liz finally have sex with Todd? If memory serves, I think Todd had come back to live in Sweet Valley. He had moved to Vermont, Dad got a big job. (insert dramatic sigh here)

My problem, with reading teen novels as an adult, is that I keep thinking, just do it already. But as mentioned in (Sometimes it's ok to give in to the trash) young men and women shouldn’t just do it already. Sex is not a Nike slogan. They should wait until they are ready. Then just do it very carefully. With condoms. I suppose the more important question is why am I reading Teen or Tween novels? (Shrugs) Some things become part of popular culture and there is such chatter about them that you just sort of cave.

So help me, that’s what happened with me and Harry Potter. I may recycle a post I wrote about that. My obsession with HP is epic, and it concerns my friends and family.

At any rate, I am looking forward to reading about Jessica, Liz and the old gang from Sweet Valley.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

La Liz...

Elizabeth Taylor died today. And I feel… a way about it. Not really devastated or anything. But more like… it’s the end of something. The end of an era. (I don’t like that phrase, it is cliché and kind of boring, but it fits.)

Like so many other things, they don’t make stars like they used to. Elizabeth Taylor was one of those stars with the untouchable glamour. There was a level of class that you could just see. You looked at her and knew that she was special. She was clearly beautiful, clearly talented, but there was something else about her. She had “legend” written all over her. When do you suppose the legend status got attributed to her? National Velvet? Butterfield 8? North & South? The Simpson’s? (Simpson’s, she did the voice of Maggie) So basically somewhere between National Velvet and The Simpson’s she became THE legendary, Dame Elizabeth Taylor.

I suppose the question is what makes a legend? Do you have to have been in the game (whatever that game is… sports, acting etc) for a certain amount of years? Do you have to have accomplished something extraordinary or special? What is considered special? Was she special because she was beautiful and talented? Was she extraordinary because she was a wife 8 times over? Was she special because she did time at Betty Ford? Was she an extraordinary she was a mother, grand-mother and great-grandmother? Was she special because of her commitment to AIDS? Perhaps one or two or all of those attributes? Perhaps in spite of them? I don’t know. I’m just asking.

I do think that there has to be a certain classic quality that a legend has to have. You can’t be a flash in the pan. Is it possible to gyrate your way into legend-hood? One can argue that Michael Jackson moon walked his way in.

Do you remember that song by Britney Spears? “Gimmie More”? The male voice in the song refers to Britney as legendary. Every time I hear that I sort of roll my eyes. Britney Spears…legendary? Notorious? Sure. Infamous? You betcha. Legendary? Not so much. Maybe in about 20 to 30 years and frankly I doubt it. As talented and beautiful as some of our leading actresses of today are, I just don’t know if we are creating legends. Scarlett Johansson doesn’t scream legendary to me.

Again, I wasn’t a rabid fan of Elizabeth Taylor, and will likely rarely (if ever) think of her or her films. However, her death after 69 years in the entertainment industry, did strike me significant.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Life sans Facebook and Television...

Life sans Facebook and television is hard. I couldn’t really decide what to give up for Lent, so I gave up both. No Facebook and no TV till Easter. I have not had the burst of creativity or desire to be productive at home, or at work for that matter. But it’s only been 4 days. 36 days left.

So what have been doing? Ummm not too much, I’ve been on the Internet…a lot. I’m not really looking for anything special, I’ve been looking at scrapbooking stuff and looking for and reading other blogs. I stumbled across Steph in the City. I used to read Steph’s blog on MySpace. (Remember MySpace?) Steph recently had a blog that suggested if you want people to read your blog then you have to read other blogs and comment on them. Totally brill Stephanie. So I’ve been doing that. Reading and commenting other blogs. According to my Blogger stats, I’ve gotten more traffic. Not more followers, but more traffic. I’ve also been reading the archives of An American Mom in Paris. Dear, dear MJ, you are hysterical and the antics of the Loosh KILL me. Vous êtes vraiment extraordinaire et votre famille est simplement adorable. What else what else? Ah yes, I’ve also been listening to a lot of NPR. There is a lot of interesting music out there. Yesterday I listened to what I think was Arabic rap. Also the BBC, I love how those Brits speak. Lots of Japan and Libya talk.

While, not going on Facebook has been challenging (While at work, FB is my go to time waster) not watching television has been much harder to do. I live in a house with people who do nothing but watch TV. Further, I realized the moment I get into by bedroom, I turn the TV on. I’ve taken the batteries out of my remote control to try and help myself along.

Last night I toddler-sat while my friend went to see Steve Harvey in concert. [Side bar, I hate that guy. I find him judgmental, not that funny AND a bad dresser]. Anyway, the little guy watches a lot of Nick Jr, and I found myself watching Yo-Gabba Gabba and several other similar shows. BTW, the pink thing on Yo-Gabba Gabba looks like a butt plug and the one eyed orange thing looks like a vibrator. I’m just saying. WTF is up with that?

Does anyone thing I cheated? I hope not, because I feel like I was being punished. This morning I heard my mother (Yes, I live with my parents. No, I didn’t always live with them. Yes, I am also horrified and disgusted by this. Yes, I am working on getting out. Target date is August 2011) watching Sunday morning on CBS. I love that show. They were interviewing Bryan Adams. I hearted Bryan in HS. I still do. To make matters worse, they also interviewed Daniel Radcilffe (Harry Potter). I may not have mentioned this but I am a Harry Potter freak. My ringtone on my phone is the theme to Harry Potter. My screensaver is a scene from the movie, etc. I’m so bummed that I missed it.

I’m not twitching nor am I foaming at the mouth. But it could happen. I think it might.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Givin' up is hard to do: Lent

It’s Lent time again. For those of you who are not Catholic, Lent is the period of time from Ash Wednesday through Easter where each person makes some kind of personal sacrifice. According to the Bible this is the same 40 days and 40 nights where Jesus fasted, and prayed in the desert.

I grew up Catholic. I got baptized, received Holy Communion, Confession and Confirmation. I spent 12 long years being educated in the Catholic school system. So I guess that makes me Catholic. I guess.

Here is the thing, when I go to church I don’t feel much of anything and I think that I should. This has been an issue for me for years now. I believe that religion should provide you will a sense of peace and contentment. I’m also a pretty leftist person. Meaning—I believe in a woman’s right to choose. I believe that Lesbians and Gays have a place in our society and should be treated just like everyone else. I think that priests and nuns should be able to get married, not necessarily to each other, but they deserve companionship that marriage provides. I think that nuns should be able to perform mass. I think that sometimes divorce is necessary. All those beliefs go against what the Church stands for. So how Catholic am I really?

In spite of those feelings, as soon as Lent rolls around, I am compelled to participate. Ashes on Ash Wednesday, no meat Fridays, stations of cross on Good Friday, Easter Sunday mass and giving up something for Lent. Yes my friends, these are the shackles of Catholicism. I also know that no one is making me do this. This is coming from me. So until I am ok with NOT participating, I MUST participate. Yes, I know it’s weird. No, I don’t know why. I say all this because I am looking for something to give up. For years I gave up some favorite food or drink. However, I am doing Weight Watchers and feel like that is hard enough; I don’t think I can give up anything else that has to do food. Shopping? I don’t really shop like that. So no. I’ve been thinking and I narrowed it down to two things. First thing(s) Facebook (I can't figure out how to link to my FB page) and Twitter. Second thing Television.

Facebook and Twitter: I am very connected to Facebook. VERY. To be clear not "April" the other me. As a matter of fact, if you want to friend me on FB--please. April's FB page is sad!(lessofapril@gmail.com) LOL! The second I have a moment, I am on checking my status and the status of my friends. I make comments. I tee hee and ho ho. I am not nearly as connected to Twitter as I am to FB. Although, I do use Twitter to updates folks about blog updates.

Television: I don’t watch episodic television much anymore. I watch the news. I watch Family Guy every single night. And I watch a hell of a lot of HGTV. Someone once told me that their TV is almost like a light bulb. It’s just on all the time. Mine is like that. Even if I’m not watching. Turns out that Fat bridesmaid (Whose name I just realized I don’t know. I looked for it on her amazing blog and couldn’t find it.) Anyway she has given up Television for Lent, so far so good I think. She keeps on meandering into her her living room to turn the TV on, but she hasn't mentioned twitching or foaming at the mouth so I think she's going to be ok. Her doing it makes me think it's a great idea.

So what to give up? Not sure. But by this Friday I will have decided.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Wishin' and Hopin' vs. Satisfaction

Wishin', and hopin', and thinkin', and prayin', Planning and dreamin' each night of his charms. That won't get you into his arms. So if you’re looking for love you can share, all you gotta to is hold him, and kiss him, and love him. And show him that you care. Show him that you care, just for him. Do the things that he likes to do. Wear your hair just for him, 'cause, you won't get him, thinkin' and a prayin', Wishin' and hopin'.'Cause wishin', and hopin', and thinkin', and prayin', Planning and dreamin' his kisses will start. That won't get you into his heart! So if you're thinking how great true love is, all you gotta to is hold him, and kiss him, and squeeze him, and love him. Yeah, just do it! And after you do, you will be his. You gotta show him that you care just for him. Do the things that he likes to do. Wear your hair just for him, 'cause,You won't get him, thinkin' and a prayin', Wishin' and a hopin'.'Cause wishin', and hopin', and thinkin', and prayin', Planning and dreamin' his kisses will start. That won't get you into his heart! So if you're thinking how great true love is! All you gotta to is hold him, and kiss him, and squeeze him, and love him. Yeah, just do it! And after you do, you will be his. You will be his.Ani DiFranco

That is probably the worst song ever. And I know that Ani DiFranco is not the original singer of this song, it was originally recorded in 1964 by Dusty Springfield. (I didn’t just know that---I googled) But Ani, with her unshaved armpits, gives that victim song some street cred. I just was trying to think of song that had to do with wishing and hoping for stuff and that kept popping into my head. Anyway to the topic at hand…

Oh weight loss surgery. I’d be lying if I didn’t say I thought about it. As a matter a fact last year maybe the year before I went to a weight loss seminar and there was something about it that seemed so sad. Frankly the conclusion I came to, is one that I stand by, the problem is not what I eat. (Though I do eat some bad shit) The problem is in my head. There is a reason why I eat the way I do. Bored? Sad? Lonely? Angry? Etc. Having weight loss surgery is not going to fix that. I have to figure that part out or I’ll end up like Carnie Wilson. No bueno.

A colleague is having the procedure done in a few weeks. And I admire her honesty. She is has come to a conclusion that she can’t do it alone. And she has asked for assistance and is going for it. I wonder why I can’t do it. Just let it go April, just have the surgery. Get started with living the life that you have always wanted.

While I am sorely tempted, there is a part of me that feels like I should just do my best and do the work that it entails to follow a weight loss program. It is hard? Yabetyerass it is. But I just feel like the feeling of accomplishment, the feeling of satisfaction, would be so awesome and so uplifting, that I can’t help but feel as though I have to make that happen. Like so many things, it’s not going to just happen by my wishing it so. I spend an inordinate amount of time wishin', and hopin', and thinkin', and prayin', planin’ and dreamin' about stuff. I think I just need to start doin’ and workin’. It all cannot be left to God. The responsibility rests on my shoulders. God will help me help myself, but he won’t work it out so I wake-up a size 8. (Ummm Lord? Would that really be so bad? ) and of course the answer to my blasphemous question is that yes, it would be a bad thing. There is something to be said about working hard for something.

I went to WW this weekend and spoke with my former leader. We’ve decided that I am going to try it on my own and go to her meetings once a month. I will weigh in at home once a week, record it in my tracker at home and officially record it at the meetings. I’m good with that.

So there shall be less wishin', and hopin', and thinkin', and prayin', planin’ and dreamin' and more doin’ and workin’ and trying to get the satisfaction that alluded the Rolling Stones.

I can't get no satisfaction, I can't get no satisfaction. 'Cause I try and I try and I try and I try. I can't get no, I can't get no. –Rolling Stones

Yes I can. -April

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Mommy Dearest...

There is a reason why I keep this little blogging project of mine a secret. How could voice my thought on things that might hurt people’s feelings? Seriously.

I have a good friend. Who is a single mother to the yummiest baby ever. For lots of reasons, after she had her baby, she moved back into her mother’s apt. The moment this happened I was concerned that it would go wrong. First of all her mother is no longer in her bedroom. My friend and child are in there. Granny’s out in the living room. Grandma cooks, does laundry and takes care of baby. All the time. My friend often goes off and does what she wants, leaving baby behind. Now let me very clear. She is NOT shaking her thing, nor is she drinking or drugging. She is running errands, going shopping etc. Sometimes she goes scrapbooking with me—day crops, weekend crops etc. Basically doing all the things she did BEFORE she had a kid.

I don’t have a child and I don’t know the ins and the outs, but I don’t understand this. Yesterday she and her mother got into a tiff about something. Money. Let the record also show that she pays rent and other bills in the house in addition to giving her mother some cash now and then. She is no deadbeat. Her mother called her selfish and she of course got angry and defensive…here is the thing. While maybe she was not being selfish THIS time, I find that her behavior is often very self absorbed. Further I’m not surprised that this hasn’t happened before or more often. I wonder if the reason that she got so angry is that somewhere deep down inside, she is knows that that she is sometimes selfish. SMH.

She loves her kid. She is in love with that baby. I am as sure about that as I am about anything. She loves being a Mommy. But she doesn’t seem to want to toss everything else aside to be his Mother. Isn’t that what happens? When you become a mother, your needs, and desires come second don’t they?

Don’t they?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Beast of Burden...

Everybody has a beast of burden. (I was going to share Beast of Burden---but the words don’t really work with this.) Mine is food. What IS it about Food that makes me so out of control? I suppose if I knew then I wouldn’t be out of control. And knowing me, it wasn’t food it would be something else. So Food it is.

I meant to get to a weight watchers meeting this weekend to speak with my old Leader and ask her to explain this new Points Plus plan. I can’t seem to get it together. But I have been “watching” and I have lost some 6 lbs it looks like so that is good. It’s not enough but I am thankful that my watching has resulted in some activity.

I was reading Olivia’s blog and she has some rewards set up for herself. I was thinking of incorporating that as an incentive for myself. For now I might just use hers and tweak it as I go along. Her ideas are great, but they may not work for me and my lifestyle. Especially that I don’t work out. Yet. I will. But I’m not ready yet. What I really like about her list is that none of it is food related. That would just feed the beast wouldn’t it?

Olivia’s Reward System For First 50 Lbs Lost


5 lbs- new nail polish
10 lbs- treat myself to a movie
15 lbs- new shoes
20 lbs- new purse
25 lbs- new workout clothes
30 lbs- $30 worth of new itunes
35lbs- lovely day trip
40 lbs- new outfit
45 lbs- concert or show
50 lbs- spa day

April’s Reward System For First 50 Lbs Lost


5 lbs: New Nail Polish
10 lbs: New Lipstick
15 lbs: New Cricut Cartridge
20 lbs: Spa Manicure and Pedicure
25 lbs: New Shoes
30 lbs:
35 lbs:
40 lbs: Spa Day
45 lbs:
50 lbs: New Outfit
60 lbs:
70 lbs:
80 lbs: Spa Day
90 lbs:
100 lbs:
120 lbs:
130 lbs:
140 lbs:
150 lbs: Trip! Someplace good. Seriously Good.

I know I'm getting ahead of myself. But I need to spur myself on...

Sick...

I’m sick. Or almost sick. I’ve been battling a cold or something for weeks now. I have an ear infection. WTF? Why do I have an ear infection? Last year, at some point in October I think, I had an ear infection AND whopping cough. Apparently I have the immune system of a Victorian era toddler. I hate being sick.

Everyone at work is sick. We’ve got strep throat, staph infections, flus, colds, sinus and ear infections.

I swear I work in a Petri dish.

I hate being sick.

On the upshot I haven't eaten much.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

I want you to want me...

I want you the right way. I want you, but I want you to want me too. 
 Want you to want me, baby. 
Just like I want you. I give you all the love I want in return, sweet darlin'. But half a love is all I feel. It's too bad, it's too sad. You don't want me now, but I'm gonna change your mind. Someway, somehow, oh baby. 
I want you the right way, I want you. But I want you to want me too. Want you to want me, baby just like I want you. This one way love is just fantasy, oh sugar to share is precious, pure and fair. 
Don't play with something you should cherish for life, oh baby. 
Don't you wanna care? Ain’t it lonely out there? 
 I want you the right way, 
 I want you, 
but I want you to want me too. Want you to want me, baby, just like I want you. I want you the right way I want you, 
But I want you to want me too. 
Want you to want me, baby Just like I want you. – Marvin Gaye

“I want you, that’s what I want.” Said Big to Carrie. (They showed SATC, The Movie on NBC the other night.) Yes I know it’s a fictitious man speaking to a fictitious woman. But is that so out of the realm of possibility? That a man could say that to a woman and mean it?

I’ve been trying to convince myself that I am ok being alone. And obviously, if I never meet a man, I will have to be ok with it. It happens to lots of people out there. Good, funny, smart, attractive people who never find a partner. So I know you can live with it. But is life worth living without a man who loves me? Is life worth living without a child ever calling me Mommy? I literally feel an ache in my center when I imagine my life with out a man and child who love me. Who appreciate me for the things I stand for and the (fierce) way I love them.

When I think about him, TG (that guy), I am overwhelmed with the idea of this man loving me exactly that way that I loved him. It just would have been nice. I promise that I am going to get over this and I promise that things will get better, I just am feeling so alone and the feeling is overwhelming.

The other day I was on the subway, and I saw a man. For the first time in I don’t know how long, I got the “feeling” by looking at another man. He was very handsome, and had the swagger that I like. I was standing in the corner reading, Dead In the Family (whatever, I won’t be judged!) when he stepped into the car. And he looked at me. Really looked at me right into my eyes and smiled. I smiled back and held his gaze for a moment. There was a moment. The earth didn’t move, the angels didn’t sing. But Yankee hat, Navy Pea coat, Gray sweater, Blue Jean, Timberland Guy and me had that moment you have when you see someone and there is a mutual attraction. It doesn’t happen often but it happens. And I had the briefest of moments to decide, to hold his gaze a few seconds longer and see what comes of it? Or do I delve back into the world of Sookie and Eric and save myself? I choose to save myself. I could tell by my reaction to this stranger, that he would also lead me nowhere good. I could feel him staring at me while I read. No matter. I stopped really taking in what I was reading, but I was on a mission to save me. The train got more and more crowded and he got closer. I refused to look up. He got off at 7th Avenue, and I watched him walk away. Relieved. Annoyed. Embarrassed. He must have known I was watching because he looked back and sort of smiled a me quizzically. Train rolled out, I shook my head at myself and went back to exploits of Sookie and Company.

At the moment, the world of Vampires seemed a lot safer.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Peice of my heart...

(Come on…)
Didn't I make you feel like you were the only man, well yeah, An' didn't I give you nearly everything that a woman possibly can? Honey, you know I did! And each time I tell myself that I, well I think I've had enough, But I'm gonna show you, baby, that a woman can be tough. I want you to come on, come on, come on, come on and take it,Take another little piece of my heart now, baby, (break a..) Break another little bit of my heart now, darling, yeah. (have a..) Hey! Have another little piece of my heart now, baby, yeah. You know you got it if it makes you feel good, Oh yes indeed.
- Janis Joplin

I was exited and nervous to see him. I heard the doorbell ring and I went to answer it… my heart did that thing. The fluttering, floating thing. He looked different. Older, puffier, grayer. His teeth… the smile I loved was different. But he looked at me and looked happy to see me. That is undeniable. He was happy to see me. As happy as I was to see him? Maybe. I don’t know.

I let him in and we hugged and did the face-rubbing thing that we did. He smelled familiar. We talked for a moment and I lead him in my bedroom. It didn’t take long, before we were holding and kissing and touching. He said he missed me. And I told him the same. I could smell the liquor and the weed on his breath. For the first time, it was off putting. Not off-putting enough for me stop him. But off-putting, nonetheless.

April: You’ve been drinking love?
That Guy: Yeah I had to take a few shots.
A: Why?
TG: My mouth.
A: Why don’t you take the medication he dentist gave you.
TG: That Oxishit made me feel fucked up.
A: You think it’s a good idea to have oral surgery and drink Rum and spoke pot?

It doesn’t take a shrink or professional to know that he is self-medicating. I self-medicate with food. More kissing, more touching him telling me that he missed me, that it had been too long etc. We had sex then. Every way possible. And it was… not like I remember. Better than sex with others. But not as good as it used to be for me. At one point in the middle of it, I remember feeling… this is awful and I don’t want to be here. But I couldn’t stop; it was almost like punishing myself. And afterwards… I cried. He looked at me and I could see the tears in his eyes as well. I asked him, what are we doing?

TG: We don’t have to. I don’t want this if you are going to be so upset.
A: But I do want this… I just don’t want this.
TG: I knew it. It was wrong but I just needed to see you and be with you.

And then the sobbing… about how he knew he was failure and asking me why he was a Cancer on everyone.

TG: I don’t know what to do I don’t know what to do. I just want to run away. Will you come with me if I run away.
A: You can't. You don't really want to, and I won't go with you. That's not how I want you. You don't mean it anyway.

He was crying like a child. It was heartbreaking. What should I do? Should I tell him that enough was enough and we needed to be no longer or should I protect him and bolster him? I tried to do both.

I told him that I knew he could make the changes that he needed to be the man that his family needed. I told him that he should go back to school and turn his life around. I also told him that he and I couldn’t be together in any way, that our being together was thwarting any effort of his being with his family, as well as, getting in the way of my happiness.

I’m not sure if I made it better or worse, at this point he and I are both crying. He looked at me, with those eyes that I loved forever, and kept telling me over and over how much he had loved me and how torn he had been.

I left my bedroom and when I came back he was sitting at the edge of the bed, looking forlorn. Honestly, it broke my heart just to look at him.

I sat beside him and told him what I think I had always wanted to say. I told him how I had loved and only wanted him. I came right out and told him that I had wanted us to get married, make a home and have some babies. I explained that I had spent the better part of 10 long years wishing and hoping and praying that he would open his eyes and be proud to be with me, even after I knew that it was never meant to be. Finally I told him that the finality of that knowledge was devastating. I went on to tell him that I was not sorry that we had met nor was I sorry that I had fallen in love with him. The only thing that I was sorry about was that I had always been too afraid to tell him exactly what I wanted when I realized I wanted it. At this point, this man that I have adored for over 10 years began to wail.

TG: I know. I knew what you wanted and I knew I couldn’t give it you. I am a cancer April. I knew that you would be better with out me, because I can’t give you shit. I knew it but I couldn’t let you go because you are so good. You did everything right. You are smart, and beautiful and doing your thing and making moves. I’m a piece of shit. I’m not good for anyone. I’m not good for my son, my daughter, my Moms, my wife; she’s been waiting for me since she was 12 years old. I’m not good for you.

I sat there looking at this still beautiful man and my heart was breaking…it hurt to watch him. It hurt to be in the same sentence as his wife. He has a wife. And he should be with them. He should be with his family. He made a choice, regardless of the reason, and it wasn’t me. It was someone else. They should have him. And I am not saying that in a mean or angry way. He and I will never be right. This woman who has been waiting for him, deserves to have him. She deserves to have him with out my interference. He and I ruin any chance of he and she being together and successful.

Now, with all of this crying and sadness, you’d think we would stop having the sex. But we didn’t. We had sex 4 more times. Once in the kitchen. And it was still sad. And we both still cried.

When he said goodbye to me he held my hand and looked at me in a different way, all I could do was look at him back and shrug.

There is no moral to this sad, pathetic little story. I don’t know what is going to happen.

At some point, the crying, wailing, sobbing simply become too much and you have to move aside and let the smiling, laughing and sounds of joy back in.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Sometimes it's ok to give in to the trash...

I wanna do bad things with you. When you came in the air went out. And every shadow filled up with doubt. I don't know who you think you are, But before the night is through,I wanna do bad things with you. I'm the kind to sit up in his room. Heart sick an' eyes filled up with blue. I don't know what you've done to me, But I know this much is true: I wanna do bad things with you. When you came in the air went out. And all those shadows there filled up with doubt. I don't know who you think you are, But before the night is through, I wanna do bad things with you. I wanna do real bad things with you. Ow, ooh. I don't know what you've done to me, But I know this much is true: I wanna do bad things with you. I wanna do real bad things with you.- Bad Things; Jace Everett (True Blood theme song)


While I do have a few relationship and weight loss woes to discuss, I am at work and can’t really get into all of that. Yes, I am taking the time from my “busy” work schedule and blogging about nothing important at all. You know you do it too.

Last year at some point, my coworker a chain smoking, Diet Mountain dew chugging, no fruit or vegetable eating, yet as thin as can be, delightful slip of a southern woman was all over me about True Blood. April, you have to watch True Blood. You just have too. I protested I was over Vampires. My sister had tried to get me into Twilight and while I read the books (likely the most poorly written books ever) and watched the Twilight movies (so dim. So so so dim). I was just not interested. Besides, I’m already a Harry Potter GEEK and I don’t want to be THAT fat girl. You know, a cat lady, living at home with mother, who scrapbooks and is also a science fiction weirdo. But she kept on me and I finally acquiesced.

Oh. My. WTF? WTH? OMG…

I LOVE True Blood. It’s just so kitschy and ridiculous and chock full of gratuitous violence and sex. I literally watched 3 seasons in less than 2 weeks. Hooked Hooked Hooked. And now I’m reading the books. Which BTW, are so much better than Twilight. Not only are they written in a much more fluid way, Sookie Stackhouse novels, while silly, are written for adults. I think my frustration with Twilight was that they never really get to the sex. A part of me is definitely like, Geez, just fuck already. But, Twilight is written for young girls. So they really shouldn’t just fuck already. They should wait. Till they are ready.

Now let me just say that I am in school, desperately trying to better myself though education. I have no time for shenanigans of the characters in wonderfully written novelettes of Charlaine Harris. I mean I am in the midst of trying to “Summarize modern Jewish beliefs—Orthodox, Conservative, Reform and Reonstructionist—on God, the Torah and the Halakhah (Jewish Law, the Mizvot)” and that is pretty heady stuff.

However, I eagerly (happily, joyfully) tossed aside the Torah to see what would happen next to Sookie, Eric and the good folks in Bon Temps, Louisiana.

Sometimes it’s ok to give in to the trash.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Love for Sale...

When the only sound on the empty street is the heavy tread of the heavy feet that belong to a lonesome cop I open shop. The moon so long has been gazing down on the war ward ways of this wayward town my smile becomes a smirk, I go to work. Love for sale, appetizing young love for sale. Love that’s fresh and still unspoiled, love that’s only slightly soiled, love for sale. Who will buy? Who would like to sample my supply? Who’s prepared to pay the price for a trip to paradise love for sale? Let the poet’s pipe of love in their childish ways. I know every type of love better far than they if you want the thrill of love. 
I have been through the mill of love old love. Knew love, every love but true love, love for sale appetizing young love for sale. If you want to buy my wares follow me and climb the stairs. Love for sale. – Ella Fitzgerald (written by Cole Porter)

Recently, I went to the Dominican Republic on vacation. I spent the bulk of my time at a resort with my cousin and brother. While there I watched the members of the “Animation” Crew. The animation crew, are the entertainment. During the day they try and engage the resort patrons by playing various beach or pool type games, doing “impromptu” dance routines etc. In the evening, they perform in the various shows and mingle among the guests, talking, drinking, dancing, etc. The interaction is overtly sexual, very aggressive and determined. I watched as the male members of the animation crew behave like heat seeking missiles. If you are alive and breathing, they were all over you. Equally as interesting to me, was the behavior of the female guests. Regardless of age or martial status they were reduced to giggling, blushing little girls. We had the chance to speak with a few members of the team who told us a little about what they do. Each male animation crewmember, and we spoke to several, in not all, told us about their “girlfriends” in Holland, England or Germany. One member told me that he much preferred the white women as opposed to the women of color. He made a point to say that the black women are just too just difficult.

Because of snow at home, I ended up staying two extra days, and on one of those days I was alone. This is where the story gets fun. So my routine was to wake up have breakfast, go the beach. After lunch I would sit by the pool. That’s where it happened, at the pool. I became the target of a heat-seeking missile, code name “Sexy Bomba” (I’m serious, his name tag said “Sexy Bomba”) I was sitting by the pool, drinking an ice cold cervesa, reading a trashy novel, and listening to my Ipod when SB (Sexy Bomba) approached me. Here’s what happened:

SB: Hello Mami
AL: Hey how are you?
SB: Good Good… I see your brother and prima (Spanish for cousin) have left you alone.
AL: How did you know that?
SB: Ay please, Sexy Bomba? He know everythin’.
AL: Well yes, it was sno---
SB: …Snowing in Nueva Jork, so you stay.
AL: Well yes.
SB: So April… you and me we have sexy party before jew go.
AL: You and ME? Have a sexy party before I go?
SB: Jes.
AL: Umm no.
SB: Jes, and Mami? (Whispering and giving me the knowing look) I do everythin’.
AL: I’m sure you do, but still sadly no.
SB: Si, give me jor room number; we have a berry sexy time, jew and me.
AL: A sexy time?
SB: Jes, a berry sexy time. And after, I do everythin’? Jew give me geeft. Big, small whatever. Jew give me geeft.
AL: I give you gift?
SB: Si, but what you want.
AL: How about you go and find a nice blonde?
SB: Aye no, I like jew. I prefer my color… Our color jew know? (Wink, Wink, Nod, Nod)
AL: Ummmm yeah, listen, how about I give you gift right now… no sexy time.
SB: Just geeft, not sexy party?
AL: Yeah (reaching into my beach bag for 10 US dollars) here you go.
SB: I geeve jew sexy kiss.
AL: There is no need for sexy anything. But thanks.

And off he went, leaving me to my cervesa, no longer fria but caliente. I sat there for a moment, laughing to myself and shaking my head.

I shared my little story with El Shrinko. And he asked me, So did you? “Umm no I did not”. Why not? First of all, I really did not get the sense that SB cared if I was male or female. I don’t think he was gay per se, I just think that he was an equal opportunity gigolo. Second of all, I really think that once you pay for sex, you have gone to a whole other side, a dark side, and you can’t really come back that. Yeah I know, we all PAY for it one way or another, but still.

While I can still see the humor in my little encounter, it also gave me pause for thought. This is someone’s life. I am not participating of the victimization of SB, and trust me, whether or not he knows it, Sexy Bomba is a victim. When the only way that you can supplement your income is by selling yourself? You ARE a victim. That is one shitty situation. It’s not funny, it’s tragic.