50 Shades of A Real Mother

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The 50 Shades of Grey Trilogy, written by E.L. James, has become a worldwide phenomenon. This series continues to reach unprecedented sales milestones that suggest every man and woman on the planet currently owns a copy.  The craze started for the self-published James thanks to friends telling friends and ebooks – where women could simply download James’ smutty tales in the privacy of their own homes.

Which, of course, is the digital equivalent of a brown paper bag.

And now, just in time for Valentine’s Day 2015, the movie version hits the big screen.

In 2012, everywhere you looked women were toting around, and actually READING, copies 50 Shades in public. Without so much as blushing.  In the Chicago airport, I witnessed women of all ages, from gray haired grannies to moms with babies in strollers, so totally mesmerized while reading the book they nearly missed their flights.  If the sales numbers are any indication, the odds are good that my own mother has a copy of the book on her nightstand.

The mere thought is so horrifying; I’m going to need therapy. [Read more…]

Give me fitness. Give me abs. Give me a Hawaii Chair.

workout woman

Experts say it takes three weeks to turn a new behavior into a habit.  So if my past experience is a predictor, at two weeks into my New Year’s fitness regime I’m going to be, well, bored.  Cardio intervals? Yawn. Core fitness? Zzzzzz.  Eat less, exercise more?  What-EVER.

Give me gimmicks.  Give me fads.  Give me a piece of exercise equipment I can hang wet laundry on when I’m tired of using it.

What can I say? I’m a sucker for lazy-woman fitness.

I’ve been enamored with useless home exercise equipment ever since I watched my grandmother unveil her newest apparatus.  “You wrap this band around your hips,” she told me. “Then you flip this switch.”  The machine began to agitate her body with such vigor, she looked like she was in California during The Big One.  “I-I-I-I a-m-m-m e-xxxx-er-cisingggg!” she squealed over the din of the motor sounding like a post-menopausal Elmer Fudd on an infomercial.  After being shaken by the machine for exactly three minutes, Grandma somehow managed to flip the switch off. The band around her hips went slack and fell behind her legs. “Whew, what a workout!” she said patting her forehead with a towel, although she hadn’t visibly broken a sweat.

If this was working out, then I could embrace fitness. [Read more…]

Jeans for Every Occasion. Seriously.

jeans

Ever since Jacob Davis and Levi Strauss invented them in 1873, workhorse blue jeans have been a part of the American landscape.  The advent of Lady Levis put them on the female fashion radar in 1934.  And we’ve had a love affair with all things denim ever since.

Although we adore our brands with a fierce loyalty, women have endured many incarnations of this iconic wardrobe staple.  We’ve paraded around with Gloria Vanderbilt, Calvin Klein and Jordache stamped on our derrieres. I’ve worn things that would warrant the Black Bar of Fashion Don’t Shame to hide my true identity when I donned trendy, less-than-flattering nightmares like jeggings (jean leggings), jorts (jean shorts) or that too-long denim skirt that made me bear an uncanny resemblance to Ma Ingalls.

In 1947, Wrangler introduced the “new jeans for cowboys.” But recently Wrangler made an inventive effort to reach out to the female consumer. And I bet their latest denim development has Jacob and Levi turning over in their graves – Wrangler Spa Denim Jeans – better known as moisturizing jeans. [Read more…]

When Cupid Makes You Stupid

Many people remember the instant it happens.  And nothing is ever the same.  The sun is brighter.  Mr. Bluebird lands on your shoulder because you’re just so darned happy.  You’ve become so annoying that your closest friends are actually plotting Mr. Bluebird’s untimely demise.

And that’s a sure sign that you are head over heels in love.

Every teenager experiences that universal rite of passage known as falling in love – usually with a person who doesn’t even know they occupy space on planet earth.  For me, it was probably best if I remained unnoticed by my high school Crush de Jour.  With my unibrow, a space between my front teeth big enough to park a Prius and a wardrobe from the Sears flammable collection, not being noticed was probably best to keep at least one tiny shard of my fragile teenage ego intact.

But eventually those unacknowledged teenage crushes pave the way for Real Life LOVE.  It’s On the Job Training for that life changing moment when Cupid runs over you driving that Mack Truck of full of Flaming Amore Arrows.  You can’t eat.  You can’t sleep. You can’t talk about anything but your One and Only.  That special someone has swept you off your feet.

It’s hopeless when you’re smitten.  Then it’s all over except for deciding between the FryDaddy Jr. or the George Foreman Grill for the registry.  What the heck, you only have a few weddings in this lifetime, make them special.  So don’t be greedy, you can ask for the Foreman on the next go round.

Those were the days.

It used to be simple.  But now with eHarmony, Speed Dating and Relationship Agreements, the Rules of Engagement as I learned them have been redefined.

Online dating confuses me.  Should your search for true love involve a search engine?  We’ve become so desperate that we’ll believe that skeevy eHarmony guy who I’m convinced is the Pina Colada Song Guy from the 80s.  Are we gullible enough to believe our soulmate looks just like Brad Pitt, who is a food and wine connoisseur and spends weekends at his cabin on the lake? While his online mugshot may resemble Young Brad from Thelma and Louise, it’s a much bleaker image in reality.  Your Online Sweetie’s country cabin could possibly involve wheels and cinder blocks and he may consider serving KFC from a bucket while swilling Miller Lite a gourmand’s delight.

After your encounter with Online Bad, you’ll fully understand why love is occasionally blind.

And now looking for love no longer has to waste time – with Speed Dating.  One night, twenty dates, four minutes each.  No awkward small talk or worries about food plastered on your front tooth.

Apparently it works.

Just ask the couple whose engagement announcement recalled their first speed date.  The groom-to-be summed it up succinctly in the New York Times, “She was articulate and worth seeing again.”

What sweet nothings will you utter at the altar, Romeo?  You’ll Do?

With that attitude, he’ll probably not even make it to Kim Kardashian’s martial finish line.

Now thanks to Mr. Facebook, we have Relationship Agreements to define our dating life.   Mark Zuckerberg may know a thing or two about online relationships but apparently he needed help with his real-life one.  Mark and his then-girlfriend wrote up a dating accord that required him to take her on one date and spend one hundred minutes with her a week.

So when you start swooning, make the call – to your attorney.

Maybe New York Times Bride-in-Waiting should follow Mark’s lead. She could definitely use a Relationship Agreement – with another guy.

 

 

 

It’s October – Get Your Mammogram

It’s breast cancer awareness month. Get your mammogram.  Remind someone you love to get theirs. I double dog dare you.

The Truth About New Car Envy

 

 

 

 

 

My friend thoughtfully offered to give me a ride.  So when an unfamiliar car pulled into my driveway, I barely glanced up.  But there was my friend, smiling and waving, sitting behind the wheel of a brand new car.

No wonder she was smiling.

When I opened the car door, there was no way to avoid it  – New Car Smell.

Now I had a bad case of New Car Envy.

If my truck smelled like that, I’d sleep in it.  But my vehicle is so old that in the State of Montana, it’s eligible for a Learner’s Permit.  And now it emits an odor that suggests I’ve used it on more than one occasion to transport roadkill.  [Read more…]

Confessions of a Fashion Tween

I’ve hit that magical age of clothes shopping, when you’re no longer able to shop in the Junior department with a straight face but not yet ready to give up the fashion ghost to polyester tiger print slacks, a fanny pack and K-mart slippers and white socks like my grandma used to wear.

Because it’s next stop Alfred Dunner separates.

It’s the Twilight Zone of women’s clothing where trying to be too hip leaves you looking like you are pathetically clutching the shards of your youth.  Catalogues offer the only thing that comes close to middle-age appropriate wear but that’s just not good enough to satisfy my inner-impulse shopper.

The clothing choices for us middle-aged tweens are pathetic. Because now inseams are now measured in centimeters rather than inches.  Some of the skirts are so tiny that I’d need two, one for each thigh.  I held up one of these microscopic garments, roughly the size of a car visor, and wondered who on earth could actually wear it.

Because if I tried it would look like I was wearing a neck warmer on my meno-pot.

Jeans are no better.  The low cut, low riders, so popular in my teenage years have reemerged on the scene.  While a thong may look cute peeking out of the top of these, it’s a safe bet that seven inches of the Granny Panty do not.

I wouldn’t be caught dead wearing those cutesy, tiny shorts with Cheer! or God forbid, Sweet Thang emblazoned across my rump.  But now seizing the booty-licious advertising potential, everyone including the college marketing folks have gotten in on the act.  Now I see young women at the gym sporting Bobcats on their fannies.  My alma mater is no exception.  Unfortunately those in my size are a little too informative: University of Louisville, est. 1798, Home of the Fighting Cardinals, For season ticket information call: (502) 852-5555.

They even dare to market belly shirts to women of my age.  While there are about 4 of you out there who could pull it off, I think it should go without saying: if you have a belly, just say no.  If I dared to don one of these and put my middle-age muffin tops on public display, I’d be cuffed and stuffed by the fashion police.

[Read more…]

Save A Life, I Dare You (it might just be your own)

As Grandma Kate would say, this is Mammy-Gram day.  If you haven’t gotten your mammogram yet, make your appointment TODAY.  Tell every woman you know to do the same.  Mammograms save lives.

Check out this video, the Pink Glove Dance, from a spirited hospital in Portland, Oregon with a great sense of humor.  My hope is that the tune will stick in your head making it impossible to forget your mammogram.

Go get one.  I’m not kidding.

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