Friday, May 25, 2007

Have a Safe and Enjoyable Weekend!

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

It's Good to Have a Hobby

Roll on.

So I went to a Rocky Mountain Roller Girls bout a couple of weeks ago with Superfly, the Troublets and my BFF Jaymie. I know quite a few righteous babes who participate in roller derby all over the country and fully support the idea of DIY, all-girl roller derby. It was a blast!

During a break in the action they held a contest: moms were invited to try to ring a roller girl with a hula hoop. Far be it for me to pass up a contest of any kind (competitive much?); I stepped up and ringed her on the first try. Yay! Free tickets!

After giving it about about 2 seconds consideration, I emailed the team's organizer and filled out the application. Invited to the first practice presumably to confirm I wasn't a complete troll and the second to confirm I could skate.

The thing is, I need a Roller Derby Name. Something "punny", like my teammate Assaultin' Pepa, and fearsome. It's a family show, so no obscenities or adult references. I've been told that "Trouble on Wheels" is already taken.

Please, I need your help!


Monday, May 21, 2007

Jezebel and Bad Gut Feelings

Gawker media, purveyors of up-to-the-minute snark news and gossip related to the bustling asylum that is Manhattan, adopted a new baby and named it Jezebel. (Hope the lawyers at Jezebel magazine in Atlanta don't get twisty underwear over the name. I quite like it, both for it's femme fatale connotations and because Poe's song, "A Rose is a Rose", is knocking around my head since I clicked over to

The editors, standard-issue hot Manhattan chicks, say their aim is to provide women with the content they themselves want to read. Better writing than most blogs, for sure, and content that is less fashionista ridiculousness and/or celebrity-worshipping than other women's mags. So far, so good, say I, up until they start mentioning that farshtinkener Julia Allison, at which time they will go back to being dead to me. Probably you don't know who that is. Better to keep it that way and resist the urge to Google. She's just a slutty magpie, forever drawn to the sparkly and shiny cameras and always kicking up an annoying racket.

The bad gut feeling has nothing to do with the new girly site. It has everything to do with a little bullshit thing for which doctors have invented a bullshit name. IBS, or Irritible Bowel Symdrome: One day your poor stomach bloats up to about the 5th month of pregnancy, the next day you spend annihiliating the toilet. They tell you to stop drinking coffee, eating chocolate, and cut back on sugar. No change. Now dairy is the culprit. And wheat. Still no change? Must be yeast or bacteria. Eat this yogurt and take these pills. What do you mean it's worse? I know: fructose! No more fruit for you, young lady. Colonoscopy! Test that turd! Everything's ok? Hmm. How about this? Are you anxious, depressed? That must be it: it's emotional, it's all in your head.

Two-and-a-half-years later, I still do the bad gut shuffle and no relief, much less cure, is in sight. To any fellow sufferers out there reading this, keep trying and don't get discouraged. To any gastroenterologists reading this, do me a favor: Don't tell patients their symptoms are in their head when they sit before you looking like malnourished Sub-Saharan orphan. Unless you are actually Dr. House, don't try procedures and medications when you don't know what's wrong with them. But most of all, will you PLEASE find treatments that work for IBS and somebody, please, find a cure.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Ooooh, more exciting video!

Am I lazy? Perhaps. But don't be mad, gaze instead at this tasty preview of the remake of the Bionic Woman! Woot!


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Dance Nostalgia!

If you were a dance geek in the '80s, you loved this video too. This other video represents the dance geekery of the later '80s, plus features my all-time favorite female singer.

The movie Fame was both informative and inspirational. I choreographed a routine for our school talent contest, featuring girls from every clique, to this song:

But this next one combined all the things I loved as a teenager: dance, France and half-nekkid men (nevermind that they're all gayer than an Ice Capades locker room):

Hope you enjoyed this as much as I did! [This nostalgia trip brought to you by my recently unearthed grubby toe shoes.]


Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Steal the Rainbow?

Dallas (AP) — A little candy can add up to a rainbow of trouble.

A man caught removing tires from a truck has been charged with stealing the tractor-trailer containing $250,000 worth of Skittles, police said.

Seven pallets of the 28 in the truck are still missing, authorities said. Alan Chavez, 22, has been charged with first-degree felony theft. It was unclear Monday whether he had a lawyer.

Chavez said he had paid someone else $500 for the truck’s rims and tires, police said. The truck has an estimated value of $85,000, and the trailer’s value is $30,000.

© 2007 The Associated Press

Monday, May 14, 2007

Circa 1974

My favorite pair of jeans — the kind with denim "windowpanes" sewed on &mdash were worn through at the knees and hems, and my Keds were ragged. I usually wore my hair in two long braids, covered by a bandanna. As I walked the blocks of our suburban neighborhood to my friend Elisa's house, I slurped up a bomb pop, tried to teach myself to whistle really loud without using my fingers, wondered if Bob Good would ever play spin-the-bottle with me again, and sang my favorite songs.

Records and the radio were always playing at our house. Our single and crazy mom loved opera and Nana Mouskouri. My oldest sister wore roach clips in her frosted and feathered hair and was into kick-ass hard rock, the next older sister wore glittery shirts and overalls and was a disco and funk fanatic, and my little sister was still a baby listening to baby stuff. Since I was in elementary school at the time, I was more into listening to the Dr. Demento show, thus my singing-down-the-street songs tended to be of the novelty variety:

Popcorn, by Hot Butter (less sung than clucked)
Brand New Key, by Melanie (which I still sing at karaoke all the time)
Knock Three Times, by Tony Orlando and Dawn (interactive!)

...and the tune featured in this (much-later in the '70s) video, made all the more nostalgic with the inclusion of "Special Delivery", the band made up of Kids are People Too! dorks.

Little known fact: The Queen banned this song in the UK upon its release, thinking the wah-wah-whoop organ solos were meant to be the sounds of actual Muskrat Love.

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Sunday, May 13, 2007

Mother's Day

My son gave me a cookbook made up of recipes the kids in his 1st grade class described to their teacher. His recipe is for scrambled eggs (which he could eat for every meal if we let him) and features a depiction of the finished product, in pencil. The book is laminated and dedicated to me. It is the greatest thing, ever. My daughters and Superfly took me out for brunch, which was lovely.

I sent my own mother an e-card, which I know is lame. Meh.

This video is an oldie and a goodie. Enjoy!


Thursday, May 10, 2007


When I read this story, I took a fresh look at my obsession with getting back in shape. I may not be able to wear the darling little sun dresses I tried on yesterday (well, I could, but prefer not to look like a Dolly Parton impersonator), but my insides are very healthy.

Anyway, take a look:

LONDON (AP) If it really is what's on the inside that counts, then a lot of thin people might be in trouble. Some doctors now think that the internal fat surrounding vital organs like the heart, liver or pancreas — invisible to the naked eye — could be as dangerous as the more obvious external fat that bulges underneath the skin.

"Being thin doesn't automatically mean you're not fat," said Dr. Jimmy Bell, a professor of molecular imaging at Imperial College, London. Since 1994, Bell and his team have scanned nearly 800 people with MRI machines to create "fat maps" showing where people store fat.

According to the data, people who maintain their weight through diet rather than exercise are likely to have major deposits of internal fat, even if they are otherwise slim. "The whole concept of being fat needs to be redefined," said Bell, whose research is funded by Britain's Medical Research Council.

Without a clear warning signal — like a rounder middle — doctors worry that thin people may be lulled into falsely assuming that because they're not overweight, they're healthy.

"Just because someone is lean doesn't make them immune to diabetes or other risk factors for heart disease," said Dr. Louis Teichholz, chief of cardiology at Hackensack Hospital in New Jersey, who was not involved in Bell's research.

Even people with normal Body Mass Index scores — a standard obesity measure that divides your weight by the square of your height — can have surprising levels of fat deposits inside.

Of the women scanned by Bell and his colleagues, as many as 45 percent of those with normal BMI scores (20 to 25) actually had excessive levels of internal fat. Among men, the percentage was nearly 60 percent.

Relating the news to what Bell calls "TOFIs" — people who are "thin outside, fat inside" — is rarely uneventful. "The thinner people are, the bigger the surprise," he said, adding the researchers even found TOFIs among people who are professional models.

According to Bell, people who are fat on the inside are essentially on the threshold of being obese. They eat too many fatty, sugary foods — and exercise too little to work it off — but they are not eating enough to actually be fat. Scientists believe we naturally accumulate fat around the belly first, but at some point, the body may start storing it elsewhere.

Still, most experts believe that being of normal weight is an indicator of good health, and that BMI is a reliable measurement.

"BMI won't give you the exact indication of where fat is, but it's a useful clinical tool," said Dr. Toni Steer, a nutritionist at Britain's Medical Research Council.

Doctors are unsure about the exact dangers of internal fat, but some suspect it contributes to the risk of heart disease and diabetes. They theorize that internal fat disrupts the body's communication systems. The fat enveloping internal organs might be sending the body mistaken chemical signals to store fat inside organs like the liver or pancreas. This could ultimately lead to insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, or heart disease.

Experts have long known that fat, active people can be healthier than their skinny, inactive counterparts. "Normal-weight persons who are sedentary and unfit are at much higher risk for mortality than obese persons who are active and fit," said Dr. Steven Blair, an obesity expert at the University of South Carolina.

For example, despite their ripples of fat, super-sized Sumo wrestlers probably have a better metabolic profile than some of their slim, sedentary spectators, Bell said. That's because the wrestlers' fat is primarily stored under the skin, not streaking throughout their vital organs and muscles.

The good news is that internal fat can be easily burned off through exercise or even by improving your diet. "Even if you don't see it on your bathroom scale, caloric restriction and physical exercise have an aggressive effect on visceral fat," said Dr. Bob Ross, an obesity expert at Queen's University in Canada.

Because many factors contribute to heart disease, Teichholz says it's difficult to determine the precise danger of internal fat — though it certainly doesn't help.

"Obesity is a risk factor, but it's lower down on the totem pole of risk factors," he said, explaining that whether or not people smoke, their family histories and blood pressure and cholesterol rates are more important determinants than both external and internal fat.

When it comes to being fit, experts say there is no short-cut. "If you just want to look thin, then maybe dieting is enough," Bell said. "But if you want to actually be healthy, then exercise has to be an important component of your lifestyle." — Maria Cheng


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Missing NYC

I was shocked — absolutely gobsmacked! -- to learn that mani/pedis everywhere but New York City cost almost $50. The bagels and pizza are, of course, abysmal. After a month in Denver, we are missing Bay Ridge (a little).

Thusly angst-ridden and with scraggy nails, I offer this "You Know You Live in NYC When ...", courtesy of the lovely and talented Shana-Detroit of bangitout:

1.You say "the city" and expect everyone to know that this means Manhattan.

2.You have never been to the Statue of Liberty or the Empire State Building.

3.You can get into a four-hour argument about how to get from Columbus Circle to Battery Park at 3:30 on the Friday before a long weekend, but can't find Wisconsin on a map.

4.Hookers and the homeless are invisible.

5.The subway makes sense.

6.You believe that being able to swear at people in their own language makes you multi-lingual.

7.You've considered stabbing someone just for saying "The Big Apple".

8.The most frequently used part of your car is the horn.

9.You call an 8' x 10' plot of patchy grass a yard.

10.You consider Westchester "upstate".

11.You think Central Park is "nature."

12.You see nothing odd about the speed of an auctioneer's speaking.

13.You're paying $1,200 for a studio the size of a walk-in closet and you think it’s a "steal."

14.You've been to New Jersey twice and got hopelessly lost both times.

15.You pay more each month to park your car than most people in the U.S. pay in rent.

16.You haven't seen more than twelve stars in the night sky since you went away to camp as a kid.

17.You go to dinner at 9 and head out to the clubs when most Americans are heading to bed.

18.Your closet is filled with black clothes.

19.You haven't heard the sound of true absolute silence since the 80s, and when you did, it terrified you.

20.You pay $5 without blinking for a beer that cost the bar 28 cents.

21.You take fashion seriously.

22.Being truly alone makes you nervous.

23.You have 27 different menus next to your telephone.

24.Going to Brooklyn is considered a "road trip."

25.America west of the Hudson is still theoretical to you.

26.You've gotten jaywalking down to an art form.

27.You take a taxi to get to your health club to exercise.

28.Your idea of personal space is no one actually standing on your toes.

29.$50 worth of groceries fit in one paper bag.

30.You have a minimum of five "worst cab ride ever" stories.

31.You don't notice sirens anymore.

32.You live in a building with a larger population than most American towns.

33.Your doorman is Russian, your grocer is Korean your deli man is Israeli, your building super is Italian, your laundry guy is Chinese, your favorite bartender is Irish, your favorite diner owner is Greek, the watchseller on your corner is Senegalese, your last cabbie was Pakistani, your newsstand guy is Indian and your favorite falafel guy is Egyptian.

34.You're suspicious of strangers who are actually nice to you.

35.You secretly envy cabbies for their driving skills.

36.You think $7.00 to cross a bridge is a fair price.

37.Your door has more than three locks.

38.Your favorite movie has DeNiro in it.

39.You consider eye contact an act of overt aggression.

40.You run when you see a flashing "Do Not Walk" sign at the intersection.

41.You're 35 years old and don't have a driver's license.

42.You ride in a subway car with no air conditioning just because there are seats available.

43.You're willing to take in strange people as roommates simply to help pay the rent.

44.There is no North and South...

45.It's uptown or downtown.

46.When you're away from home, you miss "real" pizza and "real" bagels.

47.You know the differences between all the different Ray's Pizzas.

48.You're not in the least bit interested in going to Times Square on New Year's Eve.

49.Your internal clock is permanently set to know when Alternate Side of the Street parking regulations are in effect.

50.You know what a bodega is.

51.You know how to fold the New York Times in half, vertically, so that you can read it on the subway or bus without knocking off other passenger's hats.

52.Someone bumps into you, and you check for your wallet.....

53.You cringe at hearing people pronounce Houston St. like the city in Texas

54.Film crews on your block annoy you, not excite you.

55. People from other states cant tell a polar bear from a peanut, but they know you're from NY the second you open your mouth.

56. When you are able to make a right turn at a red light.. you think it's the best thing ever.

57. Rather than waiting safely on the sidewalk to cross the street, you wait inches away from speeding traffic waiting to cut through it.

58. Your local news is national news.

59. You walk a mile in 13 minutes and think that everything should be open 24/7.

60. You know who Dr. Z is...

61. You think you know better than everyone else in the world.. when in reality.. well.. you do.

62. Yellow light means speed up.

63. Red light means speed up because you know have that 1 second pause until the other light turns green.

64. Communicating with people on the road only takes one finger.

65. You order your dinner and have it delivered.. from the place across the street.

66. You cross the street on a greenlight, and if you get hit by a car you blame the driver for "not watching where they're going.

67. You can tell a gunshot from a firecracker and not get scared, but when you go to the burbs you get scared of hearing a cricket.

68. You know the lights above the skyscrapers is the closest thing we have to stars.

Ah, now I'm misty. I need to go out and pick a fight with a shopkeeper for overcharging me.

Or intimidate polite, never-honk Coloradoans with the NY car plates and aggressive driving when everyone else here drives well under the speed limit and rarely changes lanes. If someone were to pull a typical Jersey Turnpike move, i.e. roaring up the shoulder to get around a jam and shoving their way back into traffic, the drivers here would die of fright.

I miss the coffee cart in front of my office in Union Square. The Moroccan guy was always cheerful, always made my coffee perfectly, saved me the good croissants, and never failed to say, "Good morning, beautiful!", even when snot ran down my nose and I was wrapped up like a wool mummy.

I miss people who are direct, no-bullshit types. I miss the Empire carpets commercials. I miss all the quality choices available at my fingertips, almost 24/7, in food, nightlife, shopping, whatever. I miss the energy of NYC.

But there is more that I don't miss and more that is good here. Still, $50 for a mani/pedi? Are you fucking nuts?

Friday, May 04, 2007

Wall-Eyed Trannie Jailbird

Fingers crossed!

From MSNBC, this nugget:

She blames her agent/PR/doormat Elliot Mintz for her moving violations. Hilariously, she believes she's constantly pulled-over so that officers can hit on her. She thinks the punishment for her crimes is "cruel" and "unwarranted". Her mother thinks the prosecutor is "pathetic". Her fans (!!!) are knee-deep in "Free Paris" mania. Her lawyer seeks to alleviate her from "unfair" punishment. They whole thing stinks.

Winona Ryder deserved the same treatment from the justice system as any other shoplifter, but was merely slapped on the wrist. Martha Stewart got off easy on insider trading charges, unlike other rich thieves. Over and over again, celebrities flaunt laws that ruin everyday people's lives.

Clearly, Miss Hilton was raised to be the next Leona Helmsley, firmly believing that laws are for "little people". Consider what Paris Hilton has brought to the world, why her name is known: underage sex tape, attending parties and hitting the world's clubs, a loathsome tv show, a loathsome book, loathsome perfume, an embarassing CD, an endless sea of paparazzi photos of herself, abhorrent pet ownership, her relationships and her STDs.

Here's the too blonde, too tan, too fugly and too stupid heiress' chance to redeem herself: Do the time, find religion (or,like, whatever) and start a new life for yourself by committing all of your energy to a worthy cause. Join RED, or the fight against global warming, or take on an illness, birth defect or disease. As you approach 30, dear, prancing around parties as a spoiled tranny stripper will get you only so far.

...and that's the end of WOT P. Hilton coverage.

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