Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A sad leap day for fans of The Monkees

While driving to work today, I listened to a story on NPR about leap year babies.  The broadcast got me thinking that although leap year might be a crappy day for a birthday, it would probably be a good day to die because then your family would only be sad on your death anniversary every four years instead of once a year.   
How’s that for a line of reasoning?  
Well, I sure as hell never thought that Davy Jones would die on this leap year.  As I write this, I’m still in shock.
Oh, how I loved The Monkees .  When I was no more than ten years old, I’d run to the A&P to pick up the latest 16 Magazine the day it came out.  I’d pore over it  in the tiny back bedroom of the upstairs rented flat we lived in before my parents bought the house on Lincoln Avenue, gazing lovingly at pictures of Davy, Peter, Mike, and Micky.  Little did I know that would be the beginning of a life of boy-craziness.
I listened to my Monkees albums, which I bought with my own money, for hours on end on my little record player (complete with the penny I’d place on the needle to prevent skips).   I’d read every word of the liner notes and stare into each photo, imagining what it would be like to meet them in person.  I was sure that if Davy and I knew each other in real life, the twelve-year age difference between us would be totally insignificant.  I'd be out of high school before he turned thirty.  We would make our relationship work.
I remember sitting on the floor next to my bed one night, listening to an album that had photos on the back cover and stats of the four of them--their birthdays, places of birth, and height.  I think it was Meet the Monkees.   Anyway, my mother came in and she was being really nice, quite the opposite of her "Jesus Christ, pick up this goddamn room" mood.
She asked to see the album cover I held with such adoration.   
"Isn't Davy cute?" I said.  "He's the cutest one."
Mom looked over the front and them scrutinized the info on the back.  "He's only five-foot three!" she exclaimed, handing me back the album cover.
"That's okay," I called out to her as she left the room.  "I'm only four-foot six."
My friend Lisa Gioia-Acres said today in a Facebook post, "Davy Jones from The Monkees has died.  A little bit of my childhood went with him.  R.I.P."
So true.
I found this little tribute on YouTube. 

What's your favorite memory of The Monkees?  

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

ADD, Jewtopia, Showgirl 101... something for everyone!

I loved your comments on Saturday's post.  Thank you all so much.  Living with an ADD spouse does take a lot of patience, and as I've said a million times, I have the patience of John McEnroe in five o'clock traffic.  In that case, I really wasn't in any big rush to get my mail and his "two to the eighth smarty-pants power" was pretty entertaining.  Oh, but believe me, there are times when that ADD shit makes me positively mental.

Everybody has something, though.  God knows I'm a royal pain in the ass.  A couple of weekends ago, Mike and I and my friend Gail went to see a show in town called Jewtopia.  It was a cute celebration of Jewy-ness and one part had me convinced that I, in fact, am actually a Jew and not just a big fan of them.

There was this one skit about a Jew searching for the perfect table in a restaurant.  "No, not near the kitchen... Over there?  Under the vent?  Are you crazy?  No, I want a booth... Not that one!  Not near children...  That one over there would be okay, but it's too close to the speaker..."  I put Mike through that hell every time we eat out!  I was just talking about this with my whack-job blogging friend Debbie of From Venting to Viggo; we're both the same way. 

And that's just the tip of the iceberg of what Mike has to put up with.  We're a match made in reality show heaven. 

To make up for my mental-ness, I am working really hard to give him a rock-hard sexy body to enjoy.  I'm only three pounds away from my goal of 134.anything and this week, in addition to my usual ballet and dance fusion classes I started Showgirl 101.  What a blast!  At the beginning of the class, the teacher asked, "Has anyone ever danced in heels before?" to which I replied, "Not sober!"  That's not quite true--I've danced plenty of times in heels to a rock band, but doing real steps is another thing.

We started simply walking across the floor like a showgirl and then progressed to a series of step-ball changes and hip movements.  There were only three of us in the class--me, a slender and beautiful young girl who was probably a little older than my kids, and a woman named Becky who was probably a little younger than my mother.  Or maybe not.

So guess which one of us totally rocked it?  Becky!  And let me make it clear that she's not one of those aging, well-preserved typical Vegas women complete with the facelift.  No, she's probably about five feet tall and could pass for your favorite aunt.  She was sexy as hell--she really knew how to move! 

It was so cool to watch her.  The young woman and I were both a little, "I hope no one's secretly  videotaping this" as we danced across the floor; I'm getting better, but I'm still a little spastic when it comes to following dance steps.  But Becky just let loose and enjoyed herself.  And it showed.

So anyway, dancing is doing the trick for me.  I feel fantastic and I must look pretty good, too.  Did you see my Facebook post on Sunday?

It's all so fun.  That's what life is all about, no?  What kind of fun are you having these days?

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Life with an ADD spouse

I have a mailbox back in my old Linda Land neighborhood that I don't get to very often, especially since I've been working regular full-time hours on the way, way other side of town.  So recently I asked my beloved husband, who does not work regular full-time hours, to pick up my mail for me.

"No problem," he said.  He's over there all the time anyway.

"Here's the key," I said.  "It's mailbox 256.  Are you going to remember that?" 
When you're dealing with someone with ADD, you do what you can to make sure they won't forget.  Because they will. 

"Of course I'll remember.  That's two to the eighth power." 

Yes, of course. 

The next day...
Me:  "Did you get my mail?"
Mike:  "I did, but I got there too late and they already closed."
Me:  "So you didn't get my mail.  That's okay."
 The next day...
Me:  "Did you get my mail?"
Mike:  "I did, but I forgot the key."
Me:  "So you didn't get my mail.  That's okay.  Do you remember the mailbox number?"
Mike:  "Of course.  It's 256.  That's two to the eighth power."
 Yes, of course.

The next day...
Me:  "Did you get my mail?"
Mike:  "No, I completely forgot to go over there."
Me:  "That's okay." 
The next day...
Me:  "Did you get my mail?"
Mike:  "Yes!  It's there on the counter."
Me (nearly dying of shock):  "Thank you, honey!"
Mike:  "Yeah, I didn't have your key, but I talked the guy into giving me your mail."
Me:  "Huh?  Where's my key?"
Mike:  "I don't know."
Me:  "But you do know my mailbox number is..."
Mike:  "Two-five-six.  That's two to the..."
Me (figuring that key will cost me about $75 to replace):  "Eighth power."   
The next day...
Mike:  "Hey, I found the key to your mailbox."
Me:  "You did?  Where was it?"
Mike:  "At the bottom of the hamper."
 Of course.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Nobody does anything perfectly the first time

Tuesday night I had my fifth ballet class.  I can tell I’m getting better at it. My legs are much stronger—in my first class I had to literally pull myself up from a grand plie using the strength of my arm on the barre.  Now I can rise semi-gracefully.   I’m also feeling a little more coordinated, though believe me, most of my floor work is still spastic at best.  We're talking blackmail video.
Because I feel I’m doing better, I’m enjoying the class more.  That’s human nature—as we gain confidence, we move further into our comfort zone.  I wasn’t quite so happy and comfortable during the first class; no one feels happy and comfortable when they don’t know what they’re doing.
The thing is, you can’t expect to be great at something the very first time you try it.  That may seem like a no-duh, but I think people tend to forget that.  My first stand-up performance was actually pretty decent (considering), but it can’t compare to the sets I do now.  My first blog posts are not a great representation of what my blog is today—hell, in the beginning I was giving grammar lessons!  And the first pages of what would become Bastard Husband: A Love Story, which I read back in 2004 to the kind and patient members of the Henderson Writers Group, barely resemble what ended up in print.
It’s a safe bet that anyone who’s ever achieved anything pretty much sucked at it right out of the gate. Do you think any of the actors up for an Academy Award this Sunday night gave a command performance their first time on stage?   Okay, maybe Meryl Streep.
My point is, it would be a shame not to try something because you can’t be at peace with your imperfection.   You could be holding yourself back from experiencing something truly wonderful.  
I am so, so digging my ballet class and now I’m sampling other classes, too.  I could live at The Stage—I'm a dancing fool!  I loved the belly dancing and Dance Fusion (a combination of various styles) classes I took recently.  Next Monday night I’m starting Showgirl 101—ha!—and I’ll probably look freakin’ ridiculous, but who the hell cares?   It certainly won't be the first time.  
So how about you?  I asked you last month what you always wanted to do.  Are you doing it yet?  If not, what's holding you back? 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

If this post doesn't help you lose weight, then I give up

I can't tell you how much my life has changed since I've been eating low carb.  If I had had any idea, I would have done this a long time ago.  I know my Kiwi ex is reading this thinking, "Linda, we did the low carb thing for years and you know it worked brilliantly."  And it did.  But when we split up, I got away from it and man, that was not a smart thing to do.  Now I'm back at it, and fingers crossed, this is how I'll be eating for a long, long time.

A few of you have asked what exactly I'm eating and not eating.  Here's my basic strategy:
  1. For the first three days, cut way, way back on carbs.  For breakfast, have eggs (I'll have three eggs, but use only one yolk).  Cut up some spinach and throw in some cheese.  Top it off with salsa--delicious!  For lunch and dinner, have chicken or fish with vegetables.  If you do this for even two days, you'll see a noticeable loss and will be motivated to continue.
  2. I usually start every morning with a high fiber cereal.  You need some carbs for energy and fiber is good.  Make chicken or fish with vegetables a regular meal.  Salad is okay; I just hate stinkin' salad.  Be sure to read the label on the salad dressing, though.  Sometimes that stuff is loaded with sugar.
  3. Think of all the fast food and chain restaurants you go to and download their nutritional menus.  Print them out and stick them in your glove compartment so you can always make the best low-carb choices.  Get a burger without the bun, and substitute a vegetable for fries.  French fries are evil!
  4. Soda (or "pop," if you're from that part of the country) is pure evil.  Substitute unsweetened iced tea.  If you're craving the bubbles, drink flavored seltzer water.  You'll never miss soda, I guarantee.
  5. For the most part, say good-bye to bread.  Sandwiches are a thing of the past for me.  No more toast or English muffins at breakfast.  Make an exception for the breads that truly bring you joy.  Warm bread in restaurants is sometimes irresistible; however, when's the last time a hamburger roll brought you joy?  Get the burger, hot dog, or grilled chicken breast with no bun.  You'll never miss it.  A lot of times we eat bread just out of habit.
  6. That said, when you do eat out, ask the waitress to hold the stuff you're trying to avoid.  Sometimes the bread they put in front of you is just so-so, yet you'll pick at it because it's there.  Tell them you're eating low carb--they'll understand.
  7. Say good-bye to junk food like potato chips, Doritos, Fritos, and chips and salsa.  Cookies, candy, cake, coffee cake and all that crap is on the bad list, too.      
  8. That said, don't deny yourself anything.   This is important!  If you deny yourself, you'll be miserable.  Knowing that you can indulge yourself now and then makes all the difference.   I'll still have a beer or two and will hit Ben & Jerry's once a week.  I'll also have pizza once a week.  Maybe you love pasta--so have it once in a while.  Trust me, you'll reach a point where you won't want that stuff more than every so often.  Why?  I've told you before:  Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels!
  9. Weigh yourself every morning after you pee and before you eat.  Get yourself a little white board to record your weight and hang it in your bathroom.  This, too, is important.  Think of it this way:  If you're always looking at the time, you're not likely to be late.  But when you don't look at a clock, time gets away from you.  The same concept applies to your weight.
So this is how my life has changed: 
  1. I have much more energy.  Before I started this, I felt like a freakin' blob.  Mike and I would walk, but that was all the exercise I was getting.  In my case, once I lost the first few pounds, which took only a couple of days, I got some momentum going.   I started taking a ballet class and once I started getting my muscles toned again, I wanted more.  Now I'm also taking belly dancing (love it!) and a dance fusion class.  I dance around the house; I do tendus and  grand battements while I'm cooking.  I'm burning tons more calories than just walking.
  2. That bloody middle age spread is definitely more under control.  It feels great to be wearing clothes from my closet that used to look disgusting.  And last weekend I was lying poolside in a two-piece.  (Though I'll still wear the one-piece with the skirt when the kids are around--don't want to traumatize them.)  I still have a ways to go in this area, but I'm getting there.
  3. My posture has improved; I hold myself with more self-confidence.  I've always been good about that, but now I'm even better.  I did a comedy set last week--the first in a couple of months--and even though it had been a while since I'd been on stage, I could tell my confidence had improved.
  4. I feel sexier.  I am sexier!
I'm not being dramatic when I say this has been life changing.  If it's a twinkle in your eye to lose weight, I beg of you (okay, now I'm being dramatic) to try cutting back on carbs.

I never thought I'd be sharing a recipe (except for homemade Bailey's Irish Creme), but here's a simple low carb meal I made up.  I call it Mexican chicken soup--how inventive, right?  Believe me, if I can cook this, you know it's easy.  Just throw these ingredients in the crock pot or on top of the stove:
  • Boneless, skinless chicken thighs (cut them up after they've cooked a bit)
  • A container of chicken broth
  • Half a bag of frozen corn (corn is high carb, so you can use less if you want or just eliminate)
  • A jar of hot (or medium, if you prefer) salsa 
Let all that stuff cook for a while and voila!  Top with shredded Mexican cheese and you've got yourself a meal.

Good luck to all who try this new way of eating, and be sure to tell me how you do!  And for those of you who are sick of hearing about this topic, this will be my last post on the subject.  (I'll try, anyway.)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Today I feel old

Today I am the mother of a 34-year-old; my son, Christopher, is 34 today.  Thirty-four!  I have to say it a million times to believe it.  I never feel old until I think about how old my kids are--that freaks me out.  Thirty-freakin'-four.

All mothers think their sons walk on water and I'm no exception, so I'll spare you the blah, blah, my son is amazing, blah-blah.    Just believe me when I say he's a beautiful, gentle soul.  When Connor was born, Courtney said, "I just hope he's a sweet boy like Christopher."

Courtney always loved her brother

Christopher was a good little boy, but as a baby he was a real pain in the ass.  He was constantly hungry, constantly screaming, and could splatter a wall 10 feet away with projectile vomit.

So there we were with this wailing baby who, though he would sometimes settle down if we put on soft music and placed his baby seat right next to a speaker, was generally impossible to please.  At the time we had an terrible pediatrician and since I was only 20 years old and my husband was all of 23, we sure as hell didn't know any better than to take his advice, no matter how positively shitty it was.

I remember telling my friend Donna's mother how this freakin' kid was driving me insane and I was ready to lose it.  

Mrs. Sacca listened and nodded calmly.   "Yeah, I remember when Frank was a baby," she said, referring to her oldest child.  "I just wanted to throw him against the radiator."

Throw him against the radiator?!?

Of course, even the thought of child abuse is an abomination, but I have to admit those were the most comforting words I'd ever heard.  From then on, whenever he'd cry, I'd think, "You're lucky I don't throw you against the radiator" and I'd instantly feel better.  Terrible, huh?

Soon after we changed pediatricians and we had a much happier baby.  And today it's awfully hard to believe that baby is 34 years old.   Man, I feel old. 

My favorite picture of my boy

Happy Birthday, dear Christopher!


Thursday, February 16, 2012

Barack or Bill? Mom can't decide

You know I rarely to never talk politics and this post will be no exception.  Nope, I'm not the one talking politics, my mother is.  I took this video a couple of weeks ago when I was up in Idaho. It's short--stay till the end!

Now, if she had to choose between Barack and Mitt Romney... well, we know who would win hands-down.  Especially if they had to sing to her.

Oh, Barack, you're such a tease.  America, we have one hot president.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Everybody loves somebody -- Happy Valentine's Day!

Yes, I’m in wedded bliss these days, but believe me, I know first-hand that Valentine’s Day can positively suck for a lot of folks.   One of my Facebook friends posted this: 

HA!  Debra, may I suggest treating yourself to a copy of Bastard Husband: A Love Story, the lonely white girls' bible?

Seriously, if you’re newly divorced, longing to be in a romantic relationship, or longing to get out of a lousy one, you know exactly what I mean about the craptastic nature of this day.  Even if you’re with someone you totally dig, Valentine's Day can end up being a huge disappointment if your beloved’s attempt (if there is one) to express his devotion fails to meet your expectations.

My advice?  Don’t have any expectations.  

It’s a stupid holiday.  Mike's been asking me what I want and I'm like, "Dude, you are totally off the hook; I have everything I could possibly want.  And if you get me a box of chocolates, I'll kill you."  Wow, I just had a Valentine's Day flashback of my mother hurling a box of Whitman's chocolates at my father across the dining room table.  And I don't think she was concerned about their effect on her low-carb diet.

Anyway, I do like the idea of a day devoted to love.  To me, Valentine's Day presents the perfect opportunity to surprise and delight someone you care about.   Call or pay a visit to an elderly relative or friend.  Treat an unattached pal to dinner.  Buy a card for your bosom buddy.   Anonymously leave a bouquet of flowers on the desk of a co-worker you appreciate.  Give your favorite cashier a Starbucks card.  Hell, give a Starbucks card to a stranger on the street.

Spread the love.  It's a good day for it.  And don't forget to do something for yourself.  
Hmmm.  That just gave me an idea.  If you're looking for me at lunchtime today, I'll be at Ross.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Demi Moore, I want to be your girlfriend

No doubt you've heard about Demi Moore's recent hospitalization.  I feel for her, I really do.  There's been a lot of unflattering press about her lately--she's addicted to drugs, she's obsessed with her looks, she fears getting older and becoming unattractive, blah-blah-blah...  Nobody knows what her life is really like.  I just want her to win. 

Demi's a tough cookie who wasn't born into a life of privilege like so many actresses--she's no Jane Fonda or Tori Spelling or Kate Hudson. 
  • Her biological parents were married for two months and her father left her 18-year-old mother before she was born.
  • Her stepfather frequently changed jobs and moved the family a total of 40 times.
  • Her home life was shaped by parents who were into drinking, arguing, and beating until her stepfather finally committed suicide.
  • She had to wear an eye patch during childhood due to operations on her left eye. 
  • Demi quit school at 16 and married rocker Freddie Moore at 18
She's a self-made woman, to be sure.

One of the best compliments I ever get is when women tell me I'm a "girl's girl."  I am; I'm a real girlfriend.  I love men, of course, but I'm all about girl power.  If Demi were one of my girlfriends, here's what I'd tell her, in the nicest way possible:
  1. Look, you're gonna be 50 this year.  Aging is not a death sentence for your good looks.  There are plenty of beautiful role models who are a lot older than you, but the thing is, beauty emerges from the inside out.  Be thankful for everything you have--gratitude shows on your face as beauty.
  2. Speaking of what shows on your face, you gotta quit smoking.  Nothing ages a face faster than cigarettes.
  3. Give up the Whip-its and "special cigarettes."  You're too old for that shit.  You have daughters and need to set an example.
  4. Gain some weight, I beg of you. At 5'5" you should tip the scales at least around 130. 
  5. Ashton was an asshole.  I hate that he was such a cheater.  On top of that, he's weird looking. You deserve so much better.
  6. Let me send you a copy of Bastard Husband: A Love Story
  7. Next time, go for a guy your own age.  You won't have to worry so much about your looks; 50-something men are noticing changes in their own bodies and are very forgiving of the "imperfections" that come with the normal aging process.  They're not looking for perfection; they want someone real.  Except the 50-year-old midlife crisis guys who think they should be dating girls in their 20s.  But you don't want them, anyway.
  8. Oh, and tell the next guy that if he ever cheats on you, he will wake up some morning with his bloody balls in his hands. You're an actress; I know you can say that very convincingly.
  9. Keep in mind that even though we don't know you, there are so many people out there who love you.  We're all sending our best wishes.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

The easiest way to lose weight, I'm convinced!

I know there's nothing more boring than someone talking about their friggin' diet, so I'm just gonna let the numbers speak for themselves, straight from the little white board in our bathroom.

Yep, I've lost 7.2 pounds in a month and a day.  On my (almost) 5'5" frame, that's a lot, and as you can see, after the first few days, it's been a very gradual process.  Mike's lost 15.1 pounds.  And all we've done is cut back on carbs.  Not cut them out altogether--that's just not good for you.  Specifically, we've cut out the carbs that don't bring us joy and have cut back on, but have not eliminated, the carbs that do.

That means there's no freakin' way I would eat a hamburger bun; a hamburger bun simply does not bring me joy.  It's not worth the 30 or so grams of carbs.  But beer does bring me joy, and so I'll have a few during the week.  Mike and I also go out for pizza and Ben & Jerry's once a week, too.   We're definitely not denying ourselves, and we don't have to because we're making good choices in other areas.  Like fast food--I wouldn't dream of eating at a fast food place or other chain restaurant without first taking a look at their nutrition menu.  So I now get a shrimp taco instead of a burrito--no real difference on the joy factor, but a big difference in carb count.

Counting carbs is key, along with not denying yourself the foods that truly bring you joy.   And the best part is, you start to feel the difference within the first few days, which gives you the motivation to continue with it.  And then you start to build a momentum you won't want to break. 

Although I allow myself beer and ice cream, my days of Starbucks mocha lattes and banana walnut bread are over.  Sure, they brought me joy, but at over 100 grams of carbs combined, that's too big a price to pay.  And now I can walk into a Starbucks and order a 0 calorie, 0 carb unsweetened iced green tea and be perfectly happy.  I'm not even tempted to get the latte and banana bread, which I really did love.  But I have not a shred of temptation.

Why?  Because nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.

I'll say it again.

Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.

I can't tell you how much better I feel with those 7 pounds off me, especially around the gut.  Had I not lost those first few pounds, I probably wouldn't have felt like getting back into ballet.  And now that I'm getting some good, out-of-my-comfort-zone exercise, I'm craving more.  I would take a dance class every day if I could.  My body is getting leaner and stronger and it feels fantastic.

My goal is to lose another four pounds by the end of March, which in Las Vegas is the beginning of bathing suit season.   Oh, and speaking of, this will NOT be another summer featuring the skirted granny bathing suit.

Yes, I will burn that friggin' thing.  You'll see.

If you're serious about losing weight, I hope you'll try cutting down on the carbs and then kicking your exercise program up a notch.  I know first-hand that it works. So far, anyway.  And you'll feel so, so much better in just a short time.  The time's gonna pass anyway, right?

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Talking about M-o-m-m-y and don't you dare put down Madonna

 Did you happen to see the comment my sister Lori left on Saturday's post about my mother falling off her Sketchers?
"I love my new Tone Ups slippers and sneakers! You haven't steered me wrong yet!!! Maybe Mommy tried to skip in them!!!"
Okay, two things.  One, my mother recently discovered that she is no longer able to skip.  You might wonder, "How on earth does one come to that realization?  Does it one day hit you, 'Hey, I haven't skipped in a while... I wonder if I still have it in me?'"

Well, in her case, she learned this sad fact while playing with Stepdaddy's grandchildren; she is no longer able to skip.  Not that she doesn't make the effort.  And can I tell you there is nothing, nothing funnier than watching her try to skip?  Her shoulders go up, her hand go up, but her body stays planted on the ground.  I wish I could make a video, but she'd kill me and the truth is, I'm still afraid of her.  She's not quite to the point where we can threaten to put her in a home if she acts up.  At any rate, I'm quite sure that my mother skipping in Sketchers would be certain death.

The second thing--WTF was my sister thinking by telling the world that we still call her MOMMY???  Jesus H, we're in our fifties!  That's pretty queer, but we can't be the only grown adults who refer to their mother as Mommy.

Um, do you?

My father used to tell a story that took place when he was probably in his late thirties.  He was standing in line at the bank with my grandfather, who turned to him and said something like, "Have you talked to Mommy today?" (Insert the sound of falling levels of testosterone...)

Changing topics...

I'm surprised at how nasty some of the posts on Facebook have been about Madonna's halftime performance. Not from my real friends--you know how you accumulate those Facebook friends that you don't really know?  To them I say... what exactly is your talent again?    

Fifty-three and gorgeous!
 You try to sing and dance in uber-heels on friggin' bleachers live in front of 113 million people.  (Jesus H, I'm ready to puke before telling a few people some jokes in the back room of a dive bar.)

And P.S.:  See me when you turn 53.  I can imagine what you'll look like at that age. 

Oh, and by the way, Madonna was a motherless child, you friggin' douche bags.  Her mother died when she was 6.  I'd say she does all right for herself.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

"Never trust a female gynecologist with a mustache" -- that's damn good advice!

My new service is up and running--working title "life P.I.M.P." (personal inspirational mentoring partner).  On the one hand I keep thinking, man, it takes a lot of damn balls to offer a service like this--who the hell am I to tell anyone what to do?  But as I mapped out the action plan for my first clients, I realized I totally know how to help these people.  I can support their weight loss goals, I can create a resume that will renew their self-confidence and I can help them prepare for an interview when it gets to that point, and I can lead one of them down the path to getting some of her writing published and even help her find love.

This is stuff I know I can do.  But nonetheless, I probably do have a lot of damn balls.

I can take on two more clients right now.  I don't want to overextend myself; I want to do this right.  If you're interested, shoot me an email at This is how it works: I'll send you a 15-question assessment, you fill it out and send it back to me (it's going to take quite a bit of introspection), and then together we'll devise a road map to follow that will get you where you want to go.  We'll check-in weekly to make sure you're staying on task.  It may not be easy, but Jesus H, you only live once--why not get the most out of it?

Speaking of telling people what to do, did you see yesterday's post about my mother falling off her Sketchers?  That's totally my fault!  I bought these Sketchers Tone Up sweater slipper clogs at Ross a couple of months ago and I loved them.  (I use them as house shoes.)  I've been searching for another pair at every Ross Dress for Less in the Vegas valley with no success, but when I was in Boise last weekend, the Rosses there were full of them.  I bought a furry version in brown and made my mother and Lori buy them, too, because it's my nature to tell everyone what to do.  And of course they do it, and then my mother has to go and fall off her damn shoes.  And she doesn't even drink.

One of my Facebook friends sent me this message:
Tell your mom to throw those damned shoes away. I had a pair of sketchers and over the course of a couple of years I fell more than I ever have in my whole life. I finally fell off them and fractured my foot. I stopped wearing them and haven't fallen since. I know this sounds like I'm a nut case but some are designed with the sole being very narrow through the arch, for me this cause some sort of balance issue.
 Yikes!  Should anyone ever take advice from me???

Nonetheless, I also bought myself, Lori, and Mike Sketchers Tone Up sneakers--I love them!  I should buy Sketchers stock.  You know what stock I wouldn't buy, though?  Facebook.  You know about their IPO, right?  Don't think I've giving stock advice now, I'm just saying I think Facebook is a little past peak. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm a big fan; I love Facebook more than my Sketchers.  It can be a fantastic way to retain old friends and cultivate new relationships.  I do think it's here to stay, and in a much bigger way than MySpace.  But remember, AOL was once a monster; it isn't anymore.  People move on.  One important difference between the two, however, is that one's social network is tied to Facebook.  I know a couple of people who've left for Google +, only to return because that's where the party is.  So maybe Facebook will have a lot more staying power.  But I still don't know if it would be a good investment.

What do you think about Facebook's IPO?  Are you a Sketchers fan?  In my book I say, "Never trust a female gynecologist with a mustache."  That's good advice, right?

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Heidi and Seal -- another celebrity split for us to ponder

Before I left for Idaho on Saturday, I picked up a People magazine in the airport--required reading for flying.  Heidi Klum was on the cover; as you probably know, she and Seal are reportedly splitting up after almost 7 years of marriage.

I take celebrity splits hard, especially when the couple appears to be so meant for each other.  Of course, from our vantage point, we don't know what really goes on, but nonetheless, when the picture looks so bright and beautiful from the outside, there's a sadness to seeing it fade.  It's enough to make you wonder, are most people destined for a good run of a few years and anything beyond that is basically a demonstration of one's ability to endure?

Having recently gotten hitched myself, I hate to think of marriage in that way.  Mike and I are so sickeningly in love you'd want to projectile vomit.  As it should be, though--we're only just a couple of months into our marriage.  This is the third time for both of us and don't think we're not aware of the statistics that say we have like a 5 percent chance of "making it."  Add kids into the mix, along with his ADD and the fact that just about everything bugs the shit out of me and you'd wonder how we ever got together in the first place.  And then we went and got married.

Crazy, huh?  We couldn't be happier.  We have a lot going for us on the compatibility scale; we share a lot of common interests (we met at the Henderson Writers Group), are truly best friends and work everyday to build our partnership.  There have been a lot of lessons learned in the 50+ years we've been on earth and we're consciously trying to apply those lessons toward cultivating our relationship.

But still, there are no guarantees.  If a breakup can happen to Heidi and Seal and Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins and Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth (my absolute favorite celebrity couple), then is anyone safe?

In one of his songs, Jackson Browne says, "That magic feeling never seems to last."  Despite our pasts, we have to believe that's simply not true.  A couple of weeks ago from the back seat as we rode down the highway, Mike's 7-year-old daughter wished on a star that "Dad and Linda never get divorced." You can bet we'll try like hell to make her wish come true.