Monday, May 25, 2009

Jon & Kate Plus 8: Hang 'em from the highest tree

I just finished the season opener of Jon & Kate Plus 8. It was painful to watch, especially for anyone who has gone through the breakup of a marriage. Clearly they are each putting on the Brave Face that I remember so well from my own life, and that, perhaps, makes it harder for me at least to see. I get the sense that they are both doing the best they can in a crummy situation.

Meanwhile, the citizens are milling about yelling, Jump! Jump! Or maybe, to make the metaphor I'm reaching for clearer, Off With Their Heads!

I am astonished at the hysteria that this family has generated in the tabloid press, and thus on line, and therefore in Twitters and Facebooks etc. etc. etc. For a while public sentiment was against Jon, the doubledealing, cheating, oh-my-god-he-got-hair-plugs, what-does-he-do-for-a-living-anyway husband. But now, now Kate is on the rack because...because--

...because she's a woman and she isn't meek. I have a couple of book shelves full of most worthy historical assessments of the role of women, with titles like Disorderly Conduct, The Female Grotesque, and (one of my person favorites) The Madwoman in the Attic. They are all a testimony to the fact that in our culture, we have not wanted our women bold and beautiful and we have certainly not wanted them smart and articulate. Kate Gosselin fails on all four points, and thus she must be chastened, scourged, and maybe even burned at the stake.

As always, it amazes, saddens and disgusts me that it is mostly women who are casting the stones. Lord, how we love to hate each other. And we're so good at it, aren't we? While little boys bash each other over the head to establish dominance in the sandbox, we girls do it with sly innuendo and backbiting. We're the master (if I can use that word) of the verbal assault because really, that's the only ammunition our culture has allowed us.

I don't know what will happen to the Gosselins. I wish them well. I wish their period of time being scapegoats for the American shadow psyche is brief. I wish we weren't all so fucking eager to raise the flag and then, just when it's flying high, pull it down to trample it in the muck. I don't know--I guess I wish we weren't so human.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Dancing With The Stars - American Idol: the last word, sort of

Indulge me while I write about my true interest in life: television of the reality genre. T'is true that I'm a People mag sort of girl. Actually, I prefer US because they never try to be high-minded about their gossip and besides, my friend, Stefanie Wilder-Taylor does fashion reviews for them.

Stephanie and others do round-up/wrap-ups of shows like American Idol and Dancing With the Stars. I prefer to just pop in occasionally for the brief--140 character--insightful comment, which is why you may want to follow me on Twitter one of these days.

This week, unfortunately, my fleet fingers were otherwise occupied, so the final finales (as opposed to the penultimate finales) of both shows went by without my wit and wisdom. Or at least my wit. Or maybe just wisdom. I dunno, 'cause I tend to think I'm funnier than I am.

DWTS: Of course, Shawn Johnson won. She is, after all, America's Sweetheart. And we need to appreciate her more these days because when she finally grows up--and out--her body will settle into something resembling a fireplug, and we won't like her so much because she will no longer be Cute. Think Mary Lou Retton. Not only that, but Hair & Makeup really did right by her. Compare the look she sported in the Olympics, when I assume she was responsible for her own glitter and eyeshadow, to Tuesday night's, and there alone you're talking the difference between a girl and a woman. Now I'm wondering if she'll maintain that look--false eyelashes and all--for the 2012 Games.

American Idol: Of course, Krissss won. And I don't think it had anything to do with the homophobia thing. I think that is just an easy excuse, like the stutterer who couldn't get a job on radio because he was Jewish. Nor do I think Kris got the Christian vote. Actually, I didn't know there was a Christian Vote until he brought it up. I voted for Kris and I'm not Christian. I voted for Kris because I don't think Adam will wear as well in the public eye. The thing that made Adam so brilliant was that he Performed his songs. What he lacked was any real connection with the music and the audience. If singing is a form of communication, then Adam was Narcissus, creating the perfect picture--for himself.

Tonight begins So You Think You Can Dance, and I'll be there. As I will for the season opening of Jon and Kate Plus Eight. Aren't you excited????

Friday, May 15, 2009

What Happens To One of Us Happens To All of Us

Gwendomomma is a blogger I met at Woolf Camp last month. Now she's a blogger in need. In the infinite wisdom of our courts, her ex was allowed to plead down a domestic violence charge to disturbing the peace. This came after he cleared out their money to pay for his bail! Gwendomomma has two kids, rent to be paid, food to be bought, etc. etc. etc. We bloggers are mighty in our ability to Get Things Done, and we are perfection in the way we Support Each Other. There's a widget in my sidebar that allows you to safely donate whatever you can to help Gwendomomma keep things going for her kids and move on in her life.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Goals, Fantasies and Reality

For some reason this post wants to call itself, Be Careful What You Wish For. I don't know why, since I'm talking about happy things and good times. Success, baby, success.

A long, long, long time ago, I decided to be a magazine journalist. Just like that--pouf! Without any training or background or much more than a love of magazines behind me. My mother had brought me up that way, to believe that if I wanted something, I just had to work hard and I would get it. And my father's mantra to me was: "You can do anything; you can be a doctor." Of course now, with the wisdom of age, I know that neither of these was true, but at the time--and for a long time--I believed it and acted accordingly. I gave myself a deadline then: in five years one of the womens magazines would be asking me to write for them. It happened in two.

Last year when I started MidLifeBloggers, a small lust lodged in my brain. More magazine would come calling. They'd see the perfect symmetry between us and offer me untold wealth to sell them the site. I believe this fantasy included a home in the South of France--and the body to go with it.

Funny thing: More did come calling. Not with the South of France offer, but with a request that I post original pieces for them on their new website. Close enough, I figured, close enough.

Today the site goes live in Beta. And here's the link to my piece. It's a rant about who gets to give midlifers advice. Go look. Cheer me on! Wish me well--and who knows, Cannes might not be so far away after all.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Do you Twitter?

This is a test. All questions will be graded and put into a saucer of milk for the cat.

If you Twitter, why do you Twitter? Hear this in a plaintive tone first--and then in a WTF demand. Both plaint and WTF are heartfelt.

I have been Twittering for a donkey's age, it seems, but now that EVERYONE is Twittering--I'm kinda meh about it. No, I'm not just meh-ish, I'm downright antipathetic. And dumbfounded that anyone would friend Oprah or Demi Moore. To what end? As in, what's the point? Do you really care what bon mots those two women are flinging through the airwaves?

And all this excitement about BUILDING COMMUNITIES ON TWITTER. Again, to what end? Like I don't know enough people from the blogs that I read? I should gather arbitrary individuals to my Twitter bosom so that I can say, "Lo! I am this popular." Well, lo, I have better things to do. Like file my nails. And wash the dog.

Why not just join the Rotary if you're into building communities? Or Kiwanis? Hey! What about Toastmasters?

And while I'm on subject--not to mention a tear and a rant--what is with Social Media going up close and personal? Isn't the point of the internet to be that we don't have suck in our stomachs and wear mascara? Or comb our hair, for that matter. Or wash it? But now these Social Media groups are MEETING. In public. For chrissake. I don't have the wardrobe for this. My Spanx are getting stretched out and my cute little shoes are wearing down at the heel.

Didn't I write this post already? And post it some time back? Is this Early Onset? Or am I just a tad forgetful?

Friday, May 08, 2009

Hey You, over there on the other Coast....

You are sound asleep in your little bed. I, on the other hand, am up after eating about 500 calories of cake. I couldn't bear to be home after I got off the phone with you last night. So I went to the regular Friday night wine tasting at Raley's. This is the equivalent of a wine tasting at Giant Eagle. $3 gets you a glass and an endless pour of four or five pretty rough wines which you can enjoy with the other connoisseurs. And cheese. Sliced. And crackers. And cut up fruit. And some salami. All of this takes place right by the bakery section so it was a foregone conclusion that I would fork over another 2.99 for a square of white layer cake with white frosting and sprinkles. I didn't intend to eat the whole thing--but somehow it just happened.

This is what is known as dealing with emotional issues by eating.

Right after my mother died, I would stand in the kitchen and eat ice cream out of a 1/2 gallon container. Just me and the ice cream and the spoon. Or I'd toast marshmallows on a fork over the kitchen stove. And eat them slowly while I read a book. Then go back and roast some more. It really interrupted the reading, but I couldn't figure out how to make the toasting be less intrusive. I did contemplate a candle, but figured it would take too long.

This is a blog post. Before we reconnected, I would put this on ByJane. So I think I'll do that now too. Why waste the words on someone who is ASLEEEEEEEP!!!!