Friday, May 22, 2009
Let's talk hair. Not the socially acceptable hair that grows on our heads, the other hair. The hair that we all pretend not to have. Yes I am talking about the taboo subject of body hair. More specifically facial hair. The women of the world can be split up in two groups. Facial hair and no facial hair. Real facial hair that one chin hair that needs to be plucked once a month does not count. If that is your definition of facial hair then you are not in our group. Our group is a secret society that meets in the dark rooms of hair salons and in the back aisles of drug stores. We have a sacred sisterhood we are bound by tweezers, waxes, and creams.
I was not born into this secret sisterhood. I come from Italian & Portuguese stock. But I was adopted into an Irish family. A family were the women shaved their legs once a week and only the men grew beards and mustaches. As a teenager I had more facial hair than most of the little boys. My poor mother had no idea what to do. She took me to the Russian section of Brookline where the heavy hairy women lived. With heavy accents they welcomed me to their salon. Then with some sweet smelling hot wax they initiated me into the club.
Fast forward 23 years later and I am a seasoned hair removal veteran. I have tried everything. Like Nads the green goop from Australia that they claim doesn't hurt. Hurts! Dear God hurts! I tried laser hair removal. I was terribly disappointed. I payed 500.00 a session to have a nail gun shot into my face. HURTS! I went about 6 times then the hair grew back. I tried the Smooth Away Mitt. The painless pad that rubs hair away. HURTS. The pad gave my face road rash. I had to lie and tell the people at work that I fell on pavement. For me nothing works better than wax. Yes it HURTS! All methods hurt but wax seems to have the best results. I go to the salon once every few weeks and tweeze in between.
We walk among you silenced by our shame. The hairy house wives. The bearded ladies. Our bond is messy, unglamorous, humiliating. We try our best to blend in. We each have our own top secret hair removal routine. Because in public we have to pretend that the hair never existed in the first place. In private we tell our horror stories and laugh at our pain. We share techniques and the names of the best operatives in our underground network. Their is something so beautiful and powerful about sharing your ugliest stories.
A tribute to all of my hairy sisters! You know who you are. I am proud to be among you!
Thursday, May 21, 2009
No those are not my measurements! My bra size is much larger. What I am writing today is my new quest to lose 40 pounds before I turn 40-years old on September 24th. Four-months, 40 pounds, and I am turning 40. I think that this plan has promise.
I am also celebrating another milestone. I am at my heaviest weight ever. I wonder if Hallmark has a card for that? I officially weight 10 pounds more than the weight I have always vowed never to reach. I used to proclaim that I would die before I reached that horrific number. Now to get to that number I have to lose 10 pounds. Now I really need cookies!
Girls, I have gone from chubby to fat to obese to "Oh my God what happened to her?" My strong sexy jaw line is covered in neck and chins. I look like I am wearing a flesh colored turtleneck. I am a fat hot mess my friends and things have to change. I have too much trouble left to cause in the world I can't waste any more time being trapped in this fortress of fat.
My diet and fitness plan is cutting edge. I have a ground breaking weight loss system. I am going to eat less and exercise more. I will eat less crap food while sitting at the computer or in front of the TV. I will exercise more by running away from mirrors, bathing suits, and shorts. Okay I will also go to the gym, but just to make fun of the skinny people.
This is my quest 40 by 40. I am publicly proclaiming my goal to motivate myself and to alert Dunkin' Donuts that their sales will dip in the next 4 months. Wish me luck and feel free to encourage me by commenting or on Facebook.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
The tent is in the woods again. When my daughter Alice was 6-months-old I bought a small blue and green collapsible tent. Have you seen these? Folded up they look like a huge Frisbee? The tent even came in a convenient over the shoulder carrying case. When I saw the tent at the store I imagined me easily carrying the tent to the park, beach, and over to friend's houses. I'd place Alice in the tent and she would be safe from the rays of the sun where ever we went. The tent itself was a simple design. When unfolded it popped into the shape of a mini igloo. The perfect accessory for the perfect mom.
The first time I used the tent was on the beach. I opened the carrying case. I removed the giant Frisbee and then it popped into shape, flew out of my hands, and started blowing down the beach. I chased the tent and dragged it back to our spot. I then spent about 30 minutes putting rocks, books, and anything else I could find to anchor the tent into the sand. Finally I triumphantly put Alice in the tent and she cried and shrieked until I took her out again. I then spent the rest of the beach day trying to fold the tent back up into the carrying case. A terrible accessory for a terrible mother.
Alice hated the tent, I hated the tent, Dave hated the tent, but my son Dylan loved to use the tent as a fort in our yard. The only problem was when he would stop using it for only a moment the tent would blow away and he would burst into tears.
Dylan did loved that tent like a brother. The following summer when Dylan was old enough to use the tent himself he lost the carrying case. Which was fine because I never understood the correct folding technique. With the case gone the tent could not be folded back up. The tent spent the entire summer flying all over the backyard and the neighborhood at large. In the Fall Dave finally got annoyed enough to hide the tent in the basement. Dylan eventually forgot about it.
Last summer Dylan and Alice both liked the tent for about 8 days. They used it to play house or park their sand box vehicles. Then they both lost interest. The tent would disappear from the yard and we would eventually fish it out of the woods or a neighbor would throw it back in our yard. After so many trips abroad the tent found a nice home way out in the woods where it made a nest for the winter. The tent was now more of an amusement to me. I would see the blue fabric way out back nestled in the brambles in the wind, in the rain, and covered with snow. I would chuckle to myself. The tent still lives! I can't believe it!
After the last winter thaw the tent emerged from his slumber he was tattered and frayed but that didn't stop him from traveling around the yard and neighborhood. Dave tried to capture the tent many times. He would shove it in the plastic play house, or the base of the climbing structure, or on our porch. One gust of wind and the tent would break free. Then Dave vowed every trash day that he would cut up the tent and throw his desecrated remains in the trash. Well as of today the tent lives! He's hiding from Dave out in the woods. shhhh
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
I bought a cookbook for the kids thinking that they'd enjoy learning how to cook. My 3-year-old daughter Alice loves playing in the kitchen. If you define playing as breaking eggs on the kitchen floor and yelling "Look momma I cooking!" I decide that I should try to harness her food curiosity in a positive way. I let her pick out the recipe.
Alice Picks the recipe for Tuna Noddle Wiggle. The page has a drawing of a green fish in drag. The fish is wearing bright pink lip stick, blue eyeshadow, and long false eye lashes. Alice loves mermaids and I love drag queens so we happily decide to make the recipe. Kids like tuna and noodles. Right?
Alice and Dylan are both excited to help cook the recipe. The kids argue a little over who gets to measure the noodles and who gets to pour the milk. Over all the three of us have fun and make a huge mess. I put the casserole in the oven and we wait for 30 minutes.
I set the table and am looking forward to watching the kids take pride in eating a meal that they cooked. The bell goes off and the kids run into the kitchen to see their creation. I pull the casserole dish out of the oven and...
"Ewe! What's that?" Dylan screams.
"Ewe" Alice echoes "Dat's gwoss!" She yells shielding her face.
"Come on guys. We made this together with love don't you want to try it?" I say laying on my best psychological warfare.
"No!" They both bark in unison. Shot down.
I look down at the white casserole containing: tuna, mushroom soup, water chestnuts, milk, and noddles with crushed up crackers on top. Tuna Noodle Wiggle looks disgusting. I mean white barf on flattened worms, gross. I had to surrender. There was no way I was going to get my kids to eat this. I could never get my husband to eat this. Why would anyone want to eat this?
I am a mom, I am a suburban super hero, I can do anything. I never give up and I never back down. I got a plate and scooped myself an extra large helping. I sit down at the table and take a bite. Ewe. I sprinkle it with parmigiana cheese. Ewe. I eat each painful bite with a smile on my face.
"Yummy! Kids this is so good." Dylan frowns at me.
"No way." He makes a face like he smells rotting eye balls. "Can I please be excused. The smell is grossing me out."
"Yes and take Alice with you. That way I can enjoy this wonderful meal in peace and quiet." They leave the kitchen. I wait a momwnt then quietly pick up my plate and empty the rest in the trash. EWE!
Monday, May 18, 2009
Tomorrow is trash day. Seven o'clock in the tomorrow morning to be exact. We take out the trash today. This morning I cleaned out the fridge. Do you know what that means? Today is trash day feast! For lunch I use up all of the leftovers in new and interesting concoctions. This week I found a bag broccoli slaw, chicken broth, a red pepper, freezer burned raviolis, and 5 dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets.
Before I tell you what I cooked you have to promise to keep my menu a secret. I don't want to get banned from watching the Food Network. Can you imagine? If the cable Network heads actually banned their networks from reaching the homes of their worst skilled viewers? I would be banned from the Food Network, the Style Networks, the Home Improvement Networks, I'd be back to the 1950's with three channels left to watch!
Back to my Trash Day Feast! There I am in my kitchen pots and pans shaking with fear. First I tackle the broccoli slaw. I toss the whole bag in a big wide frying pan. Crap I should heat up the pan first. They I remove it and put the slaw in a bowl and turn the burner on. Then I go scavenger around in the pantry closet. Viola! Bagged Oriental beef & broccoli sauce. Why do I even have this? When did I buy it? Hmm no expiration date? Broccoli slaw, broccoli sauce, perfect! I put three fourths of the slaw back in the now hot pain and pour the sauce over it. I have no beef, but I do need a protein. Yes, chicken nuggets. I microwave the 5 dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets. I toss them in the pain and lunch number one is served.
I call Dave for lunch. I serve him his Chinese chicken surprise. He eats with out grimacing or running to the bathroom. Lunch number one is a success!
Now lunch for the kids. I pour the chicken stock into a pot. I grab half of the broccoli slaw and throw it in there. When the stock boils I toss in half of the freezer burned raviolis.Viola soup!
I also start my lunch. I dice up the red pepper and half of an old onion. When did I use the other half? Well it's not brown yet. I toss them and the rest of the broccoli slaw in a frying pan. I spoon in some of the stock from the soup. I wait for the veggies in the pan to get soft then I tuck in the rest of the raviolis. I then find a few a non-rotting cherry tomatoes and throw them in as well. When the pan starts to sizzle I add in more stock from the soup. I cover the pan and wait.
The soup looks done so I call the kids in for lunch. They both drink the broth and leave the slaw and raviolis in the bottom of the bowls. I taste an abandoned ravioli. Hmm taste like leather...with stale cheese inside. I put my pan on low hoping to soften the leather raviolis into at least a nice soft cardboard.
You know me. Of course I eventually forget about my lunch and leave the pan on the stove cooking until the veggies turn to mush. I hate to waste food so I throw in some parmigiana cheese and the dish is done. The dish is soft and mushy yet surprisingly tasty. Maybe watching all of those hours of the Food Network has helped my cooking skills? Or perhaps I am simply delusions from food poisoning.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Why do people love Twinkies?
I am a fat woman I love the idea of Twinkies. Paris has Foie gras, Italy has red sauce, and America has the Twinkie. I love Twinkies as an American icon. They are a pop culture institution. How can someone not love a Twinkie? They are cute and kitschy. What about Twinkie The Kid? He is fabulously tacky and Divine. I have a plastic Twinkie The Kid that sits in a place of honor in my kitchen. I salute him every day.
Only a great country like ours can take pride in a mediocre mass produced artificially flavored product. Heck we celebrate it, my goodness people are crazy for Twinkies. Their are even Twinkie sub-cultures. People are worshiping them as little yellow lard filled Gods.
As a kid I was never allowed to eat Twinkies because I was always on a diet. I loved them. I worshiped them. I would have killed for a pack. I'd see them at the drug store calling to me from their clear pack. I'd fantasize about eating one. How soft and squishy the mouth watering cake would taste. How I'd bite into the silky sweet filling and be in heaven. Flying in the clouds just my Twinkies and me. Oh Twinkie why must we be apart?
Now that I am an adult I can eat what ever I want and I do. I can eat Twinkies morning noon and night. I can. But I don't want to. I don't know if they changed the recipe or my taste buds have matured, but Twinkies don't take me to that special place anymore. Don't feel bad Twinkie The Kid. I will always love you, but not in "that" way. But, we'll always be friends.