Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Heading back to Vegas later

Just a quick post today.  Lori and I are flying to Vegas this afternoon and then she'll be continuing on to Albany.  I'm hoping I get home in time for my ballet class at 5:30; it's going to be tight.  Don't worry, I've been practicing while I've been away.

I'm such an a-hole.  We've have a ball here in Boise.  Yesterday we dragged Mom to a saloon we found up in the mountains outside of town. 

Mom and Lori
 She's such a good sport--we tried to get her to shoot some pool with us, but she was happy to sit there with an amaretto on the rocks and watch while grooving to the tunes we played on the juke box.  What a great way to send a Monday afternoon; soooooo much better than being at work!

Then last night Lori and I visited a place called called Brewphoria.  Thanks to my reader Other Mikey's Julie for the tip--it really is beer heaven!

I gotta say, it took a while to get used to, but I am so digging the lighter hair color.  I had it done on January 1 and ordinarily at this point I'd have about an inch of gray roots, but the blond highlights blend so well I'm no longer such a slave to my hair. 

What took me so freakin' long to do this?  Seriously, if you know someone with fine, thin, crappy hair that's now starting to come in gray, very gently advise them to get a layered cut with layers of color.  I haven't complained about my hair in weeks--that's a first!  And if you're in the Vegas area, let me hook you up with my gal Lynn Yafchak at Lety's Salon on Tropicana and Topaz (702) 251-5757.  She's amazing.

So now I'll have to find something else to complain about... Yeah, that won't be hard.  All it would take is someone sitting in front of me on the plane with a flake of dandruff for me to stare at for two hours.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Traveling again!

This morning I took a quick flight up to Boise to see these folks.

Looking good, eh?  (I like to pretend I'm Canadian.)  Yup, those are snow covered mountains you see, just past the snow covered hair.

And look who else is up here.

Sister time!!! 

As you can see, I am wearing that shirt every day.  Because when something's true, you should proclaim it from your chest every. single. day. 

I got lots of compliments from women in the airport--everyone wants one.  Do you?  You can get it here.  Warning:  They run kind of small. I have a size Large and it fits perfectly and I'm usually a Medium.  It is a fun shirt, that's for sure!  Last week I bought the domain name imtooprettytowork.com.  Can you believe it was available?  Now I have to come up with some fun website.  Or maybe that could be a book title.  I have a lot to do...

Anyway,  Debbie of From Venting to Viggo fame and I were laughing last Saturday night about how we're both a friggin' pain in the ass because we're so damn fussy about everything.  I thought of her during my flight.  The plane was two-thirds empty--Yay, right?--and I like to sit in the back because you have the best chance of having some room to yourself.  So I get myself all situated with my  Altoids, pen, People magazine and USA Yesterday (they don't publish on the weekend) folded to the crossword--I'm all situated--and what happens but a couple sits right in the row in front of me.

I'm thinking, "The whole back of the plane is empty and you have to sit there?"  Not in my row, mind you, but the row in front of me.  Nonetheless, I am annoyed beyond belief and now my whole flight is ruined because I have to look at that flake of dandruff on the guy's head just inches away from me and if he reclines his seat during the flight I'm gonna lose it.  Which he, of course, does, thus forcing my eyeballs to roll clear back to my cerebellum where no doubt they will someday be stuck for good. 

Now, you might ask, if the plane was so empty, why didn't I just move to another seat?  BECAUSE I THOUGHT THAT WOULD BE RUDE!  So I sat there fuming, just hating this couple for two freakin' hours.  Jesus H, can you imagine being married to me??? I'm a mess. 

Courtney once made herself an "I'm a mess" T-shirt.  Maybe I should have her make me one.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Ballet class at 54 -- it's never too late until it's too late

My ballet class Tuesday night was FANTASTIC!!!  I mean PERFECT.  If anyone in the Las Vegas Valley is looking for a good dance school for either children or adults, you must check out The Stage Professional Dance and Fitness Studio in Henderson.  

Though I stood at a bar last Saturday night, it's been almost 20 years since I stood at a barre so even I was wondering, am I crazy for starting ballet classes again at age 54?  Will I remember anything I learned all those years ago?  Will I be able to keep up?  And most important:  Is the instructor certified in CPR? 

I found out right away that this wasn't a beginner's class; it was clearly geared toward someone who had prior training, no matter how long ago.  But no worries. The terminology--plie, tendu, degage, grand battement, pas de bourree, developpe, jete--came back to me no problem.  I imagine Catholics who've been away from the church feel the same way when they hear prayers they learned in childhood; it all comes back to you.  Ballet class was kind of like my Catholic school, and my old dance teachers were as forbidding as nuns.

I always loved barre work and did pretty well considering it's been a long time since my legs got that kind of workout.  Almost instinctively my body knew what to do.  The floor work was more challenging; there's nothing to hold onto.  My legs started tiring and it took a little more concentration to remember the sequence of steps.  And I'll be honest--sometimes I'd catch myself in the mirror and wanted to laugh out loud at my lack of coordination.  Seriously, if you could have seen me, you'd have peed your pants.

But who cares?  There were only five women in the class and I want to say four of us were on either side of 50.  One woman was really good--clearly she's kept up with it over the years--and the rest of us held our own.  But the beauty of being in dance class at this age is there's no sense of competition; there are no show-off girls to secretly hate.  We're all there for the pure enjoyment of it and because of that, in many ways ballet at this age is a lot more fun than when I was a teenager.

Our teacher, Tracey Cutler, who also owns the studio, was excellent--upbeat, supportive and patient.   She has quite the bio; she was classically trained at the School of American Ballet in NYC and has had leading roles in The Phantom of the Opera, Cats, Camelot, and A Chorus Line.  All of the instructors at her studio are pros with equally impressive credentials. 

Tracey Cutler in one of her two gorgeous studios
This place is such a find!  Adult ballet is offered only once a week, but I'm going to take as many classes as I can.  Hot hula, belly dancing, cardio dance... they're all offered on a drop-in basis, so you don't have to worry about signing up for 10 or 12 weeks and then missing classes because of your schedule.

So guess where I was after class Tuesday night?

Tub, candles, Louis CK on Netflix on my iPhone--bliss!
Yesterday I was a bit achy, but it was the good kind of achy that reminds you all day that your body is getting stronger.  Now my body is yearning to move and stretch.  I stretched all day yesterday in my cube at work and last night I stood at the kitchen counter doing footwork while putting dinner together. I'm probably going to drive Mike nuts, but he says he digs seeing me so pumped.

I am totally pumped; I was so pumped I couldn't get to sleep Tuesday night.  I am so glad I did this!  I hope that if there's something you want to do, you follow through and make it happen.  At least give it a try.  And if you're in Vegas and are looking to dance, you know where to go.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Following up on stuff I've talked about before

Thank you, thank you for all your input on what I should call my "getting from A to B" service.  In addition to your comments here, I've had a couple of interesting ones on Facebook.  One is "Personal Inspirational Mentoring Partner," or PIMP for short.  Hello, I'm Linda and I'll be your life PIMP.  The other is the R-rated  "growth guide."  Schwing!

I do appreciate all your suggestions.  My pal Vegas Flea gave me something else to think about:
"The existing term really is 'life coach' but its such an undesirable term that the best thing would be for you to simply start out and let your satisfied clients refer clients to you and not worry too much what your business card has on it."
I might just do that.  It's not like I'm looking to market this service or anything; word of mouth is all I had in mind.  And he hit the nail on the head about the term "life coach" being undesirable.  I'm trying to figure out why--I guess I think of life coaches as being all wholesome and righteous and politically correct.  God knows and you know that's not me.  I just want to help people get shit done.  Maybe that sums it up right there.

"Linda Lou... making shit happen since 2012"
"Linda Lou... laxative for your life!"  Okay, now I'm just going in a bad direction.  See what I mean? Real life coaches would never say shit.
Anyway, on Saturday night I got to meet Debbie from the fabulous blog From Venting to Viggo.  She is adorable and I could have talked her ear off for days.  I was prepared for a totally off the wall whack job to rival Julie of 47 and Starting Over (now Fifty and Fabulous) fame, but Debbie is the sweetest person on earth and I'm not just saying that because she said I'm WAY better looking in real life, which happens to be true.  Anyway, my dear Julie, your title remains intact.  I love you both.

The absolute best thing about blogging is meeting my readers and other bloggers.   I can guarantee that both of these nutcases amazing women are destined to be my life-long friends.  I feel so lucky.

iPhone photos suck indoors
What else...  Mike and I are still on track with our no carbs diet.  Seriously, the weight is melting away and we are NOT depriving ourselves; we're just looking at the nutritional menus of every restaurant we can and making the wisest choices.  It's almost like a game.

Do you have a Red Robin near you?  If you do, check out this awesome menu customizer before you head there.  It's amazing how well you can eat for very little carbs.  I had the blackened chicken with no bun and substituted broccoli for fries.  It was delicious!

Less than 400 calories and only 9 grams of carbs!
Oh, that's ice tea, not beer.   But the good news is, Guinness Draught is only 9.9 carbs--the best bang for the buck in the dark beer category.  Rest assured I'm not about to switch to Miller Lite. 

Don't get me wrong--I do cook at home, but it's eating out that can really pack on the pounds.  But if you take a look at the nutritional info beforehand, you'll at least know what you're getting.  Baja Fresh, Panda Express, and Red Robin are all excellent restaurants if you're watching carbs.  On the other hand, I'm sorry to say my days of Panera Bread are over.  And if you want to pack on weight like there's no tomorrow, head on over to your nearest Five Guys.

Yeah, Mike and I are really pleased with the progress we're making; I'm down 7 pounds and he's down 10.  It's so much easier if your partner is in it with you, that's for sure.  And speaking of "doing it" with your partner, sorry if this is TMI, but consider this:  there's 17 pounds that's no longer "between" us, if you know what I mean.  Think about it--that's more than three 5-lb. bags of sugar!  Believe me, that makes a difference.


Oh, and one more thing... I start my ballet class today!  I'm so excited!  I have no idea what to expect, but I'm hoping I like it.  Too bad there won't be a video--wouldn't you love to see that?  HA!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

What should I call this service I'll be offering?

Hey, I need your help.  Starting February 1, I'm going to be offering a service that  I've been thinking about for a while and feel now is the time.  The problem is, I don't know what to call it.  Let me share a few details of my vision.

Simply put, I want to take on a few clients and 1) help them identify their talents and/or goals, 2) create a road map to take them from where they are now to where they want to be, and 3) support them along the way.  Basically, it's "you tell me where you'd like your life to go and I'll help you get there." 

I'm thinking I'll charge $150/month in exchange for 3 hours of my time.  A portion of that time will be used for personal contact  ("check-in" time) via phone or Skype; the rest would be for work on my part, such as research or resume writing.  Most of the work, of course, is up to the client; my role is to help chart a course of action and keep you on track. 

A big impediment when it comes to creative or personal goals is that we're not accountable to anyone; there's no one saying, "Hey, did you sign up for that Tai Chi class yet?"  And if you're shelling out $150 month you're gonna want to make sure you see results, so you'll be more likely to actually follow through to make it worth it.  The ultimate goal is that after a couple of months, you won't need me anymore.

The idea to do this came from a few of my readers who suggested I become a life coach.   I didn't give it much serious thought until recently.  God knows I love to tell people what to do--you know I would tell the pope how to say Mass--but beyond that, I'm starting to see that I may actually have something of worth to offer people. 

For one, I know how to live.  I do have my a-hole tendencies, but you can't deny my joie de vivre.  I delight in being alive and wish the whole world could, too; I know how to have fun.   In my professional life, I worked as a career counselor for many years and have the writing skills to help anyone create a kick-ass resume if they need one.  I can ghost write things to make you look brilliant at work or even help you compose an online dating profile or a love letter.   On top of that, I've been around the block a few times and have shown that I can pull myself out of the shitter and create a life that's better than I ever could have imagined.  I know how to get things done and I have a pretty decent list of accomplishments myself.

So what do I call this service?  I really don't like "life coach," although what I have to offer is probably very similar.  The thing is, life coaches seem to charge a fortune and I always think of them as being kind of, I don't know...  just not me.   I recently came across the term "motivational humorist," and that applies to a lot of my writing, but I don't think it quite nails this service I have to offer.

What do you think?  What should I call this?  Any ideas?


Thursday, January 19, 2012

Bellying up to the barre

It looks like I'm going to do something I've been wanting to do for a long time.  One of those things I always think about, but for some reason it just never came together.  I'm going to take ballet again.

You know how you have those moments in the cubicle where you think you're going to freakin' explode if you sit there one more minute and you're like, okay, what else can I look up on the Internet?  Well, yesterday I did some research on adult ballet classes and come to find out, there's a dance school that offers an adult beginner/intermediate class and it's right near our house.  I can take classes on a drop-in basis even, which is good for when I'm traveling.  Perfect.  No excuse.

So next Tuesday at 5:30 I'll be taking my first ballet class in almost 20 years.  I started ballet late in life; I was 12 when I took my first class.  I loved it, but I was too late for the party to do anything serious with it.  I continued to take classes on and off for many years--I think I was about 36 or so when I started to get away from ballet.  And then around when I turned 40, I got into yoga--a natural transition.

I still love yoga, but lately I'm itching to dance.  Part of me is like, jeez, I've never taken a ballet class with a 54-year-old body--what's that going to be like?  We'll see, won't we?  This will certainly be a challenge.  I'm psyched.

What have you been toying with in the back of your mind?  Do you think you'll really do it? What's holding you back?

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Now, this is much better

Somebody landed on my blog by doing a Google image search for "53-year-old cougar" and clicked on this picture:

The thing is, it's the same photo as the "middle age spread" shot I posted on Saturday--just cropped.  The moral of the story is, now I know I look best from the boobs up.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

I love people who make me look normal and just for the record, I'm not yet 55

I'm so excited!   I'm finally going to meet that whack job Debbie of From Venting to Viggo fame when she comes to Las Vegas this weekend.  That chick is OUT THERE!  I could be wrong, but I have a feeling she's going to make Julie from 47 and Starting Over look totally normal.

Anyway, in anticipation of our meeting up, Debbie sent me her cell number, which I immediately programmed into my phone.  I knew she'd be writing a post about the Golden Globes and so as I was watching them Sunday night, I decided to text her some commentary like,  "Angelina, easy on the lipstick!" and "Nicole Kidman: GODDESS!" and "Best gown so far: Jessica Alba."

I don't hear back from her, so I'm thinking maybe she doesn't recognize my number, so I text, "It's Linda!"  Still nothing. Then finally I get this text:
"Hi, Linda. Well, thank you for sharing your night with me. Just one thing--I don't know who you are, though you sound like you're having a fabulous evening. Feel free to let me see through your eyes tonight's events. Take care, Gary."

Evidently I entered Debbie's number in my contact list with my area code, not hers. So now I have this new friend Gary...

And I have the nerve to call Debbie the whack job.  I must apologize when I meet her.

Changing topics...  Last Tuesday after eating my low carb lunch at Baja Fresh, I decided to roam around the Ross Dress-for-Less in the same plaza.  I picked up a pair of those Sketcher Tone Up sneakers because, you know, I'm on this weight loss kick (140.8 this morning, who the eff cares) and so I'm at the register and the cashier, who's probably 10 years older than me, says,
"Are you in the Tuesday club?"
Now, because I'm a Ross frequent flyer, I know what the Tuesday club is--they give a discount on Tuesdays to people 55 and older.

I was like, "Seriously, you fucking bitch? I'm not even 54 and a half yet."

Okay, I didn't really say that.  I just shook my head, took my receipt and said, "See you next Tuesday."


Sunday, January 15, 2012

Now I'm handing out diet tips...

You're going to think I'm talking out of both sides of my mouth.  On the one hand, I'm always yakking about the media's crazy obsession with weight and size 0 is NOT attractive and when you're laughing your ass off, no one cares how big it is... blah, blah, blah.  And I really mean it.

I recently posted a link to this article on Facebook.  Interesting to hear a size 12 plus-size model talk about the industry.  Did you know that ten years ago plus-size models averaged between size 12 and 18 and today they range from size 6 to 14.  Huh?  Size 6 is a plus size now?  I'd love to be a size 6!

Don't get me wrong.  I'm not obsessed with my weight.  I'm heavier than I've ever been and even weigh more than the day I gave birth (both times), but I'm a healthy size 8, and Jesus Christ for 54 years old, even I can tell that I look pretty goddamn good.

December was a big eating month, though, and I packed on some pounds I really want to get rid of.  I don't like how my clothes are fitting and I'll be goddamned if I'm gonna buy a bigger size.  Mike's bigger than he's ever been, too, and although there's certainly something to said for being fat and happy, we'd both rather be just as happy but not so fat.

I told Mike that I know first-hand that the quickest way to lose weight is to cut out the carbs.  Before I met B.H. (for new readers, that's my ex-husband) (okay, one of my exes) (the star of my book) he had lost a shitload of weight on Atkins and was still doing the low carbs thing.  When we were together, I joined in and was in the best shape of my life.  Then when we split, I got away from that way of eating.

Anyway, Mike and I decided we'd give the low carb thing a try.  We're not cutting carbs altogether--that's just crazy--but we're definitely choosing our food more carefully.  And it's working!  Here are the results from the first week, captured on a little whiteboard in our bathroom:

Seriously, something had to be done.  I NEVER thought I'd see the day where I weighed 145.8.

The good news is, we're finding this REALLY easy to do.  And the even better news is, because you see results immediately, it's easier to pass up the typical temptations (bread, pasta, ice cream, junk food, cookies, candy, Starbucks lattes and banana walnut bread, etc.) because nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.  And the best news of all is, you can still have fast food.

I hate to admit it, but I do eat lunch out every day.  I know I should bring a lunch, but the break room at work is too depressing and I'm not about to eat at my desk in my cube, so I usually run over to the food court at Red Rock casino or eat at Baja Fresh down the street.  Well, once Mike and I started counting carbs, I started checking out the menus of some of the places I eat, and it was a real eye opener.

Here are the links to nutrition information for my two favorite fast food restaurants, Panda Express and Baja Fresh.  You can see that by switching from Beijing Chicken to Broccoli Chicken, I'm saving 44 grams of carbs.  Forget the chow mein and rice--at 65-86 carbs, the price is too high for something that doesn't even taste that good.  Burritos at Baja Fresh, which are all over 80 carbs and about 900 calories, are a thing of the past.  I now have two shrimp tacos, which combined are about a quarter of the damage.

This seems so simple.  Don't deny yourself your favorite restaurants; just make sure you know what you're ordering. Get online and look at their menus.   I swear, simply being more conscious about what you're eating will make a huge difference.

Twenty minutes after I posted this...

Oh, freakin' super.  I just saw that if you do a Google image search for "women middle age spread," this shows up on page 6.

You gotta be able to laugh at yourself, right?  OH, BUT THAT PISSES ME OFF!!!

Five minutes after I posted that...

OMFG, if you do a Google image search for "handsome 50 year old man," this shows up on page 1.

THAT IS SO NOT FAIR!  These pictures were taken on the same goddamn trip!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Sometimes things aren't as they seem

For those of you who think my life is so fantastic...  living in a love palace with a super hot husband, traveling all the time, doing comedy and having interesting comic and writer friends, enjoying good weather, living in Las Vegas of all places, blah, blah, blah...  Well, let me tell you, all is not perfect.

Yes, the big things are certainly in place and I shouldn't have a complaint on earth, but the truth is, I hate my fucking job.  There, I said it.  I have hated it since day one.  Yep, I've tried to make the best of it, but I knew I was in the wrong place right off the bat.  I can't go into specifics; all I'll say is I'm used to a more structured and formal training environment.

Things have changed, in some ways for the better.  The company is actually pretty decent, from what I can tell (I'm a contractor).  It's recognized that the training needs to be tightened up.  They need documentation.  They need someone who can design curriculum and write kick-ass training manuals and user guides that even a monkey can follow.   

Unfortunately, that someone is me.  I've been moved into another department, which is good, but now I'm writing all day, which is bad.  Instead of being out on the road doing training (which I like and was hired to do), I'm driving 26 miles to work every day so I can sit in a cubicle, hardly speak a word to anyone all day, and write.  I am doing exactly what I never wanted to do again.  Unless I was starving, I wouldn't have even applied for the job I'm doing now.

I've already quit.  Last week.  But my boss's boss is a great guy and I'm staying to finish documenting one module because I want to help him out.  That should take 1-2 months, though God knows there's a ton of documentation that needs to be done.  And the woman (!) I report to now is very appreciative.  But that doesn't make the day go by any faster.  Working at home occasionally is a possibility, but they just hired another writer who at least initially will be working under my direction.  So I'll have to be in the office.

Weh, right?  I should feel lucky to have a job in this economy, right?  No, fuck that. I have a good education and 20 years of experience in training and writing and I'm really good at what I do.  I'm lucky in a lot of ways, but I should have a decent job.  That's not luck.

Sorry to be all bitchy, but isn't it just a tiny bit refreshing to get a break from my usual "I love my life" posts?  Seriously, that has to be annoying.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

200 channels, nothing to watch

What are you watching on TV these days? 

I was under the weather all weekend and even took yesterday off from work.  Nothing major--just a bad cold that put me on the couch for a few days.  Ordinarily there would be a silver lining to that; a good excuse to curl up on the couch with a furry throw and see what I've been missing on TV lately.

Apparently nothing.

Last summer was a goldmine for me, with new seasons of Rescue Me, Louie, and Curb Your Enthusiasm.  But after Curb ended (and God knows when it will be back), I didn't see anything worth watching on HBO and cancelled it.  And with Rescue Me finished for good and Louie gone till next season, I'm left with only with Modern Family (thank you, God) and Family Guy, which quite honestly is not having its best run this year.

Mike and I recently started watching Breaking Bad on Netflix; we've been through about four episodes.  I appreciate that it's well done--Bryan Cranston is fantastic--but man, it's way too graphic and violent for my taste.  I have Sons of Anarchy and Mad Men on my instant queue, but I'm not dying to fire them up. 

What am I missing?  What are you watching that the world should know about?

Saturday, January 7, 2012

No, I did not get shot in the eye, but thanks for your concern

Thank you all for your concern.  I know that when you read this article, "Woman Shot in Eye Finishes Beer Before Accepting Medical Treatment," you immediately thought, OMG!  Linda got shot in the eye? Well, you'll be happy to know I'm not the woman in question and if the photo accompanying the article is representative of the beer she was drinking, she is, in fact, crazy.  I mean, seriously... Budweiser?

Thank you, Debbie of From Venting to Viggo fame, for bringing that to my attention.  Debbie also left this comment on Thursday's post about Jennifer Aniston's hair extensions:
I feel so betrayed!!! I thought Jennifer's hair was all her own!!!
I know there are more important issues in the world than whether or not Jen is pulling one over on us, but this really does have implications surrounding the standards that average, garden variety women hold themselves to.  I mean, come on!  Jennifer Aniston is known for her gorgeous hair, and now we find out it's not even all hers?  Who saw that coming?

This is just further proof that it's a safe bet that the actresses and models we see in celebrity magazines barely resemble their natural "baseline," if you will.   Remember this video, put out by Dove's Campaign for Real Beauty?  It's a reminder that even supermodels don't look like supermodels.

The picture I posted on Thursday of me in my robe with no makeup?  That's my baseline, people, and I'm fifty-freakin'-four years old.  And I bet you have pictures of your baseline self looking just as good, no--better. 

I'm not saying we shouldn't do what we can--and want to do--to keep up our looks.  Who doesn't want to look good?  I wear makeup, color my hair, bleach my teeth...  we just have to keep in mind what exactly the media is feeding us.  I've ranted before about how everyone in Hollywood is supposed to be a size 0--that's crazy stuff--and that I've never met a man who'd prefer a bag of bones over a woman with curves. 

The bottom line is, love who you are.  Everyone else does.

Getting back to what men like, I have a hunch that it's women who find Jennifer Aniston so attractive, not men.  Just for fun, guys, what do you think?  Is Jen your type of gal?

Thursday, January 5, 2012

New year, new hair for me... and Jennifer Aniston, how could you?

Hey, check out this article where Jennifer Aniston admits that hair extensions ruined her hair.  Um...


Calm down, Linda...

If you've read my book or have been reading my blog for any length of time, you know that my hair is not exactly my best feature.  I can remember checking myself out in the mirror when I was like 8 years old and thinking, Man, I got some shitty hair going on here.  I swear, I'd take two inches off my chest and paste them on my thighs to be able to buy a shampoo or other hair product that wasn't plastered with the words "fine," "thin," or "limp."  God knows what I'd do for Jen's hair.

I'm getting to be more at peace with my hair, though.  I realize "I am not my hair" and that people who love me truly do not give a shit how craptastic my hair looks on any given day.  In fact, they don't even notice.  That is, not until I point it out to them.

For years and years I wore my hair quite short, figuring the less crappiness the better.  Even if I tried to grow it out, it would reach a point where it would look shitty to the tenth power and I'd go to the salon and tell my guy to cut it off.  In the past year or so, though, I've been letting it grow and it's longer than it's been in ages.  When people say, "Gee, Lin, your hair is getting long," just for yuks I like to tell them I'm growing it out for Locks of Love.  Recently I fed that line to my brother and he quipped back, "Isn't that like getting a liver from W.C. Fields?" 

Everyone in my family is a comedian.

The other day I came across this article that had some tips for fine hair.  One of the tips is to layer your hair, which is what I did when I got my hair cut back in November.   Another tip is to add layers of color to your hair.  Hmmmm....

Time to hit up my comic friend Lynn Yafchak.  She isn't just an experienced stylist, she's a freakin' magician.  Lynn was working on New Year's Day (because she's a nut and she loves what she does) and this time we played around with color.  My hair is now not only longer than it's been in years, but it's lighter than it's ever been, too.  As a life-long brunette, this took some getting used to, but the layered cut and the layers of color definitely make it look and feel thicker.

Me without makeup... scary!

Notice that my hair matches my robe, which matches my pajamas...  QUEER!  (I wrote this at 11:00 last night.)

Seriously, if you're in Las Vegas and need some magic done to your head, give Lynn a call at Lety's Salon on Tropicana and Topaz (702) 251-5757.  You will love her!

And now I shall leave you with this picture of Jen.  Note the layers of color.  Hmmm...  hair extensions, layers of color... 

Draw your own conclusions...

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The New Year is off to a great start!

New Year's Eve was so much FUN!  Mike and I were the guests of some friends who "play," as we say in Vegas, at the Hilton. They invited us to the party the Hilton puts on for their VIPs and they were even able to get us a room. Sweeeeeeeet!

I told you about these friends before.  Several months ago I struck up a conversation with a nice man named Al in my neighborhood Starbucks.  The next time I saw him, I gave him four passes to see my comedy set at Alexis Park.  Well, ever since then Al and his wife, Pat, and Pat's cousin Richard and his wife, Jeanette, have come to be our new best friends.  They're all between 69 and 80 and they're a freakin' blast.  Seriously, they're younger than most people half their ages.

Anyway, the Hilton put on an amazing party.  There were probably a couple of thousand people in the ballroom, which was decorated beautifully.  A sit down dinner, dessert, open bar... who could ask for anything more?  We sat near the main dance floor surrounding the band in the middle of the ballroom; there were two smaller dance floors at either end of the room.  The music was perfect for the event, appealing to everyone, and we all danced our asses off.

Midnight was magical. As the band played "Auld Lang Syne," my heart brimmed with feelings of love for my new husband, the joy of sharing fun times with new friends, gratitude for their generosity, and hope that the year ahead will be filled with peace and good health.

Afterward we went up to our friends' friends' suite on the 29th floor with a balcony that overlooked the Strip.  I stood there and had yet another "pinch me" moment (they happen quite frequently).  My life is blessed, to be sure, but the reality is we wouldn't have been there had I not smiled at a stranger in a coffee shop.

Every encounter you have with another human being is an opportunity to create some magic.  Why not reach out to someone today?  Try to catch a stranger’s eye and then smile as if you’re having the best day ever.  I guarantee the person will smile back.  There’s your initial connection. 

Sometimes the person will take the next step and start some small talk; if not, you can take the lead.  Instead of asking, “How are you today?” say something they wouldn’t expect like, “Are you having a great day?”   They’ll be taken aback by your enthusiasm and are sure to respond positively.  And if not, well… maybe they’re simply not the type of connection you want to make.  Or maybe a positive person like you is exactly what they need.

One thing I'm going to do this year--a resolution, if you will--is to write in my calendar book the names of every person I meet.   Each encounter is a gift, if we're willing to accept it.  I'm sure glad I accepted the gift the universe sent me when I met Al in Starbucks!