Who's Going To Pick Me For Their Kickball Team?

I got a response from that Meetup.com group that I requested membership to:

"Hello and thank you for your application to join Jacksonville women's
social group.
Please see our rules:
Upload a profile image of yourself, fill in your profile information and be
contactable by email.
Maintain membership by signing in bi-weekly.
No login after 1month = removal.
Members must attend 1 meetup within 2 months to maintain membership.
Turn 'maybes' into yes or no by the RSVP deadline.If not certain you can
attend, RSVP 'maybe'.
Check if the meetup invites guests & RSVP them.
If unable to attend after an RSVP of 'yes' email attending members &
call/text organizer ASAP. Unexplained no shows will have their membership
The age bracket is 21 to 35. No exceptions.
You must presently reside in the Jacksonville area.
Refrain from pushing or discussing your religion & politics at our meetup's or through this website.
Your membership implies acceptance of the group rules and maybe canceled if
rules are broken.These rules can be updated as needed.
Your application is
being decided upon by the group and we will let you know when we have finalized the decision."

Wow... seriously?!? I had a flashback to gym class where they line everyone up against the wall to pick teams. Or freshman year sorority rush. These women don't play around. Maybe I should have taken their membership form a little more seriously. When asked what I could contribute to the group, my response was that I make a mean Bloody Mary hangover cure that everyone would appreciate after a hard night of drinking. Oops!

Is it really this difficult to make friends these days? I think joining a cult would be easier!


There Has To Be A Form Of Therapy For This

This is the keep pile... and doesn't include all my flip-flops!

I am nose-deep in boxes now. The hardest part of the day was dragging my shoe collection in to the living room to sort through. I love my shoes. I actually found myself getting sentimental over some of them, even though they are certified torture devices. As an avid watcher of the Style Network's "Clean House", I followed their advice of taking pictures of beloved items that you are giving up so that you can always remember.

I've had these since 2000. I was in the Army stationed at Ft. Huachuca, AZ for AIT. After being stuck wearing only uniforms for several months, we had finally reached the stage of training where we were allowed to wear civilian clothes and go out on the weekends. I was at the mall with the guy I later ended up marrying when I saw these Steve Maddens on display. I actually let out a shriek of joy and almost mowed down an elderly lady to get to them. My ex just shook him head in disbelief... until he saw the $60 price tag and he freaked. That should have been the first sign on why I shouldn't have married him... and besides... they were on sale.

I paraded around in these shoes for several years. They are horribly uncomfortable. All the weight on the bottom is only supported by those thin straps on top, causing for horrible dig marks on the upper foot. The footbed is actually kind of pillow-like but that causes for a horrible hissing sound everytime you put your weight down.

I bought these while visiting Atlanta in 2004. I had found an awesome shirt to wear out to the Buckhead district that night but realized that I had only packed black shoes. These were picked up at Nine West despite the fact that they really are a half size too small. I somehow managed to get up on the bar at Coyote Ugly to dance with these things on. They are, by far, the most uncomfortable things I have ever forced my feet in to. I could barely walk the next day.

Another Nine West purchase that I wore to the Marine Corps Ball in 2004 with an ex-boyfriend. The ex-boyfriend was secretly a cross-dresser who actually tried on my dress the next day while I was at work and took a picture of himself all dolled up in drag. No ill will towards him (who now lives as a her and shall be addressed as she for the rest of this entry). I know she reads my blog so I will say this: no woman can get over seeing someone else looking better in her own dress. The shoes are a little tainted in my mind, even though she didn't have those on in the picture.

No matter how much I tried scuffing up the bottoms of this shoes, they remain super slick and almost send me flying. The heel on them is very skinny and wobbley. Not the easiest shoes to walk in. Plus they kind of make my ankles look fat.

A DSW find that I wore for New Years 2005. Two Army friends came to DC to party so we got all dolled up for a club. The big silly flowers attatched to the shoes can be blamed squarely on Carrie Bradshaw on Sex and the City. These were killing my feet before we even got to the Metro. Several drinks were spilled on them throughout the night, and I have never been successful at getting the stains out.

I had actually worn these sandals a few times before I incorporated them in to my Greek Goddess Halloween costume in Atlanta again in 2006. They are balanced weird. You always feel like you are tipping forwards while wearing them. Not a good combination when you have been drinking!

Next step in packing? My ridiculous purse collection.

Hoes Before Bros

How does one go about making new friends nowadays? After 5 years in Virginia, I am going to have to start from scratch and cultivate new friendships. When I was in college and the Army, making friends was so easy. You just moved in to your dorm/barracks room and walked down to the rec/day room. Everyone you worked with already had at least something in common with you so it was like an instant community.

The obvious answer would be to look for friends at my new job. I have worked with most of the people at our North Carolina office in the past. They are a nice and smart group of people but most of them are much older and married with children. Not exactly the type of people I can see myself going out to party with. Besides, most of them are men and I am looking for a new girl posse.

Conventional advice for making new friends is to join a church, volunteer or join other social groups. Since my religious beliefs put me firmly in the agnostic camp, I doubt I can find any religious groups that I would fit in to. The election this year does open up the opportunity to do some volunteer work that might be interesting so I won't count that out.

Somebody told me about Meetup.com which is like an online bulletin board for clubs in your area. At first, I was reluctant because it just sounded like online dating but for friends. I HATE online dating with a passion (all that "Describe yourself" nonsense) but I figured I would give this a try. I plugged in my future zip code and found 2 interesting prospects amongst all the bible study, scrapbooking and Ron Paul meetups. One was for a rowing club. My blog collaborator, Bad Wolf, was on the rowing team when she studied abroad in England, and she loved it. I'd like to give that a try. Added bonus: maybe I can avoid gym membership because rowing will keep you in shape!

The other group was a social club for single women with no kids:

"We are a social group for women aged 21-35 living in Jacksonville focused on building positive friendships.
Events are child-free and centered on adult interactions.
We are quite active and require members to attend meetups and contribute actively to the group.
Our members include single girls, career girls, very well educated girls, girls with partners, previous military, Jacksonville locals, military spouses, civilians, international girls and adventurous girls."

Sounds good to me so I made up a profile and requested membership. I was met with a survey chock full of job interview style questions. What would I contribute to the group? Tell us about yourself (but only in the 1,000 words that the text box will allow you.) What interested you in our group? Our events are child-free. Do you have children?

Aaaarrrggh! I guess making friends these days ain't what it used to be.


Nice Try, Old Man

But it is going to take more than another pair of ovaries to sway women who supported Clinton. This is the best you could come up with... REALLY?!?!? PUMAs (party unity my ass!) are bitter... not stupid!


Welcome To The Party, Bad Wolf!

Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to introduce my main partner in crime for the last 11 years and the baddest bitch I know. Rosie (aka Bad Wolf) is now contributing to the blog. If you think I am warped, just wait until she unleashes.

On an admin note, the blog might be undergoing some altercations... er, alterations in the next few days while the two of us figure out the best way to set this up. Have patience with us!

My Style Icon This Autumn

They always say that moving to a new town is a clean slate. Although I don't want to completely transform, I am going to embrace the opportunity to fine tune one aspect of my life: my wardrobe! I have gotten complacent the last few years. Khakis, V-necks and ballet flats are my go-to uniform for work. I always used the weekends as my chance to bust out the fun clothes but lately you are lucky to see me outside of sweats, flip-flops and a T-shirt on a Saturday. My general attitude has been "Why bother?" I am seriously teetering in to "What Not To Wear" territory, and have found myself looking over my shoulder to make sure Stacey and Clinton aren't going to swoop down on me.

I have gotten crazy inspiration from my new TV obsession Mad Men. My new style icon is the sexy office vixen Joan Holloway.

Proof that curvy girls are sexy

This lady totally makes me want to grab a box of bright auburn hair dye, slap on some red lipstick and sashay around the office in shift dresses and heels. I am bordering on girl crush territory here.

I already have the hips for it. The clothes in the stores this season support the look. Only thing is I have to find a good stylist to do something with this dark blonde mop that I have been sporting on my head lately. Otherwise... think I can pull it off?

The Sound Bite That Became My Tipping Point

I am that elusive creature that all the political pundits have dedicated endless hours of speculation to: the bitter, disenfranchised Clinton supporter. Not quite a PUMA (party unity my ass) but very close. I admire and respect Hillary Clinton. When Kerry lost in 2004, I comforted myself by saying that everything would all be alright when Hillary took over in 2008. In the early days before the primaries, I was positive that Clinton would hand that punk Obama a piece of his own ass.

Obama had never really inspired warm and fuzzy feelings in me. I believed that he made a pit stop in the Senate just to get directions to the White House. I thought he talked a good game but lacked the fortitude to back it up. Biden as his running mate didn't help. Although I had quit believing in the fairytale of a Obama-Clinton ticket, Biden struck me as a pompous, sneaky Beltway insider; a Democrat version of Cheney.

Despite being a life-long Democrat, I found myself taking a look at McCain. A very quick look since I am as left as you can get on most social issues. And even though American women have possessed the right to vote for less than a century, I kicked around the idea of just sitting this election out. When I was in the Army, I used to chastise fellow soldiers for not taking the time to vote. "What other job to you get to choose who the CEO of your company is? We get a say in who our Commander-In-Chief is going to be... how can you throw that away?" I would preach. Quite the hypocrite, aren't I?

I wasn't expecting much from the Democratic National Convention but yet I found myself getting energized. Not surprising that Hillary Clinton's speech was the one that convinced me that I couldn't sit on the sidelines for an election this important. She was on fire! Even 2 days later, these words keep ringing in my ears:

"We don't need four more years of the last eight years."

No we don't, Senator Clinton...no we don't.

I tip my hat to you, Hillary Clinton. You are a strong, admirable woman who continues to be an inspiration. Your gracious backing for Obama proved that you could check any ego at the door and put your country's needs first. I would have loved to seen you sworn in as the first female president but I won't let my disappointment cloud my judgment.

Dirtbag Alert: Dante Moore

Dante Moore
, a computer engineer who was fed up with being a nerd who got no play from the ladies, has taken it upon himself to write a "help" book for single women. The advice found in "The Re-education of the Female" (ugh... just typing that title made me break out in to hives): Learn how to cook man-friendly meals, do as you're told, stay pleasant and non-confrontational and, above all else, DON'T GET FAT!

Here is a little sample from his manifesto:
"The fatter you get, the more you decrease your potential single-man pool. Let me give you an example. When you go to the grocery store to shop, do you pick out the nastiest-looking, most rotten, smelliest fruit or meat you can find? Oh, you don't? Why not? . . . It's the same with men when they see baby elephant-sized, out-of-shape women."

Even better is:

"Here's a little secret, ladies: men never really ask for anything. They command. . . . And believe me, what you won't do, ten broads around the corner will."
Thank you, Mr. Dante Moore. Reading your vile excuse for advice made me vomit. Looks like I found a new diet plan. Maybe I should pick up a copy of your book, so every time I get the urge to eat, I can just read a passage and completely lose my appetite. Maybe I will lose the will to express my own opinions since I will be so weak from calorie deprivation. Then I can be really skinny and submissive and get a domineering, arrogant douchebag like you for a boyfriend.


A Pox On Both Their Feet

My afternoon meeting got canceled so I spent my gained freedom doing something extremely productive: browsing fall fashions online. Perfect timing because the storm hovering off the coast has made for a very cool and grey week, putting me right mindset to think about cozy cashmere sweaters, riding boots and wool coats. This is the first time out of several seasons that fall fashion has me excited. Gone are those awful sack dresses and 80s revival looks of last season. I saw some serious tailoring in the new line-up and a nostalgia for 50s and early 60s. Very Mad Men.

I met a friend for drinks after work then had to run to Target for a few things (me in Target... shocker, I know!) Inspired by my afternoon research, I answered the sirens call of the clothing and shoe departments. As I was debating whether the ruby red high heeled spectator-ish Mary Janes were really my style, I heard a girl in the next aisle exclaiming to her friend, "Oh My God! These are so bizarre... but I kinda like them... but what a weird material... aren't these like so wacky?" I rolled my eyes and grabbed the box of 7 1/2s. You never know until you try, right? I made my way over to the mirror, trying to ignore the increasing louder chatter from one aisle over.

Once the shoes were on my feet, I had to laugh and suppress the sudden urge to click my heels together and murmur "There's no place like home."

All I need is a basket to put Toto in

Weak from laughter and the dizzying height of the Dorothy shoes, I almost wiped out as the magpies from the next aisle pushed their way over to the mirror. They were about 16, so I was already feeling the generational divide. Their shrieking and the fact that they almost knocked me over without remorse didn't shrink the gap. As I was changing back in to my shoes, they kept debating the merits of what they were trying on. Upon glancing down at their feet, I had a horrible flashback...


Dear God! I hate Jellies. After 10 solid seconds of hearing "I dunno... they are kinda comfortable.. but they are so weird... who ever thought of these?... aren't they the weirdest shoes you have ever tried on?", I decided to revel in my old lady status and dispense a pearl of wisdom. "They are Jellies," I told them, "and they fall apart in a few weeks... but only after they have inflicted the worst blisters known to mankind because they make your feet sweat something awful. I can't believe I ever wore those."

Was my helpful advice met with gratitude? Sure... if by thanks, you mean vacant stares and lips curled with slight disgust. I hope they bought those ugly ass shoes and get the biggest, gnarliest blisters possible. Brats!

But, then again, would you take advice from a lady wearing a pair of Dorothy shoes?

Welcome To The Island: Early 90s TV Hunks

Everything old is new again. 90210: The Reboot is about to premiere (Complete with Brenda. Oh yeah... The Bitch is back!) We have seen the return of pegged jeans and crimped hair. New Kids on the Block released their first single since 1994 with an album and tour to follow this autumn. Since early 90s retro is enjoying its minute in the spotlight, I decided to induct some familiar faces from the past on to the island.

Rosie's pick: Brian Austin Green. Yep... little David Silver is all grown up these days.

One condition: NO MORE RAPPING!

My choice, you ask? None other than everyone's favorite guitar-playing uncle who lived in a room with pink bunny wallpaper. Yes, I speak of John Stamos aka Uncle Jesse.

A mullet can't even mar this perfection

But this... yummy!

John Stamos is one of those guys who just gets better looking each year. Sure, he likes to get drunk and babble incoherently on Australian talk shows but who doesn't? He is so hot; he almost makes the Beach Boys look cool when he tours with him... and that is no easy feat.

You are still holding it down well, Uncle Jesse. Rebecca-whatever-the-hell-her-name-is is a moron for dumping you for that fat kid from Stand By Me. You are welcome to the island any day!


A Little Salt For Your Fresh Wound, Mam?

My friend Rosie rocks. We met 11 years ago when we lived in the same dorm (yay Virgin Vault!) at Purdue. She was a super shy chick who used to let her hair hang in her face and spoke in monosyllables. All I saw when I looked at her was raw potential: I just knew there was a wild bitch within waiting to break loose. She just needed someone to corrupt her a little.

Rosie didn't disappoint. We have jumped out of an airplane, hosted a radio show, danced on bars and drank our way across most of the South (New Orleans, Memphis, Pensacola, Norfolk, Richmond, Louisville and Myrtle Beach). Her sense of adventure and dry, biting humor carries us through any mayhem we get involved in.

But this...

Not funny, Rosie!!!!

Just wait... her 30th is less than a year away!


Sitting On The Floor Is For The Dogs

I had gotten rid of my old living and dining room furniture, limiting me to my office chair or the floor for 4 days. Boo to that!

Behold the world's most comfortable couch!

Try explaining the concept of an accent chair to my father:
"But it has no arms..."
Scratches head.

The new dining room set. So much more compact than that huge hand-me-down I used to have!

The living room is a little cramped right now but I only have a week and a half left in this apartment. Can't wait to see the new stuff in the new place!

I Just Choked On Bubble Gum

I have tried my very best to avoid this new wave of teeny-bopper pop. I flip the channel every time Hannah-Miley-Destiny-I-have-too-many-names-to-keep-track-of-Montana-Cyrus graces the screen. Her hyper Tennessee-tinged voice drives me bonkers; and all I see are these giant teeth. Oh yeah... and I am still holding a grudge against her father. My junior high's physical education program had a required block of instruction on dancing. Picture me at age 12 forced to do the Achy-Breaky Heart for 45 minutes straight. Picture me at age 30 still seething about it.

Screw you, Cyrus! I still have scars.

The only thing I knew about the Jonas Brothers was that one of them was linked to that demon spawn from the previous paragraph. Then came their Target commercial. I adore Target. There is a 40% chance when you call me that I will tell you, "yeah... I am Target right now... just stopped by to get a few things." Why did my beloved Target need these little shaggy-haired moppets? I will take my Isaac Mizrahi shift dress and Michael Graves toilet bowl scrubber without a side of reworked Beatles' songs sang by prepubescent boys.

Seriously... they make Hanson sound like Barry White!

I was bored at work so I decided to educate myself on these little rat bastards. 5 minute lesson learned: the Cyrus chick and the Jonas brothers are all evangelical types who wear promise rings for God and pledge to save their virginity until marriage.

Uggghhh. No wonder they all annoy me. Cheeseball pop is one thing; sanctimonious preachings regurgitated from their parents is another. Virginity is such a private issue, especially for teenagers. I hate it when people pledge it publicly to a higher being or (the creepiest of all) to their fathers. Couldn't you just keep that to yourself? Besides... didn't we already see how the pop star who publicly vows to stay a virgin ends up?

And this is only Exhibit A

What happened to pop music? My generation had the New Kids on the Block; and yes I was a certified Blockhead. The kind that plastered my room with ripped out magazine pictures from Bop and Tiger Beat. The kind who pinned those giant buttons of my fave New Kid (Jon, with Donnie as a close second) on my acid-washed denim purse. The New Kids were your classic cheesy pop fare... but there was at least a small acknowledgment to sex. Nothing overt because they were dealing with pre-teens. Just the occasional wink or pelvic thrust to sate a poor girl's raging hormones. But they didn't feel the need to broadcast the details of their sex (or lack of) lives. Neither did Debbie Gibson. Or (reaching back to my mom's generation) David Cassidy. So shut up about your precious virginity, pop stars. We all know that you are going to lose it to some groupie backstage after sucking down a fifth of Jack Daniels chased by an 8-ball anyways.

What do you think they really meant by "Hangin' Tough"?


The Great Kick-Off

My dirty 30s started in a rather mundane way. I dragged my now older and wiser self out of bed at 8AM on a Saturday morning to go get my eyes checked at the optometrist. Wooo-hooo! Exciting, no?

The doc was a really cool lady. The receptionist was late so the doctor and I chatted as I filled out all the forms. Turns out she put herself through optometry school at the age of 39 and as a single mother of four after her doctor husband ran off with a younger woman (funny how you can learn so much about a person during a thirty minute appointment!) She saw from my medical forms that today was my birthday and handed me this pearl of wisdom ,"All that stuff about women aging like a fine wine is absolutely true. Sure... there were times where I felt like spoiled milk. But if you stay on track with what you want in this world, you will only get better. Always worrying about others' needs above your own will spoil you. So it is really up to you whether you want to be a fine wine or spoiled milk."

Hell yeah, sista!

As the perfect punctuation for this lesson, the girl at the front desk finally came slinking in thirty minutes late just as the doctor was walking me back up to the lobby. Bleary eyed and sullen, the girl was not a day over 22. The doctor and I exchanged a knowing look as the receptionist tried to clear the fog enough to process my insurance claim. On my way out the door, I glanced over my shoulder to witness the doc escorting the receptionist in to the back room, presumably for a come-to-Jesus meeting. Yup... we have all been there. I caught my reflection in the window and it revealed a knowing smirk that only a wiser and more self-assured woman can have. Welcome to my 30s! May they be like a fine wine rather than a glass of spoiled milk.


Operation Crazy Old Southern Lady

I love her more than my luggage!

I am done whining (for now at least) about my passage in to my thirties. Although I realize it will be awhile before I can fully attain crazy old lady status, I am taking my thirties as an opportunity to get just a little more cranky and bitter. Consider it my decade of taking baby steps towards my ultimate goal. In order to do so, I need to clearly outline what makes the little old crazy Southern lady tick.

  1. She needs to be Southern - duh! I am currently living in the southern edge of the DC/Northern Virginia metro area. Below the Mason-Dixon, yes, but hardly what I would consider the south. My upcoming move to coastal North Carolina will remedy that. Onward to the land of Cheerwine, pulled pork sandwiches and being able to smoke my Virginia Slim Menthol Light 100s anywhere I damn please.
  2. She needs to dress crazy - Crazy old ladies look like they dressed themselves in the dark. Polyester pants, wide-brimmed straw hats with heavy ornamentation, housecoats, muu-muus, overalls, plaids mixed with florals. All this madness can be traced back to the fact that they really don't give a damn anymore. While I am not ready to trade my knee-high boots in for gardening clogs just yet, I am ready to start wearing things simply because I like them. Being a slave to the fashion magazines and what my friends are wearing is for my twenties. I am going to start dressing for me now.
  3. She needs to go for social outings at her church, bridge club and salon - I am pretty sure I would burst in to flames if I walked inside one, so church is out for me. Don't know how to play bridge or bunko... yet! I am down for the salon if I could ever find a stylist that I really like. I just need to find a place where I become a part of the local color. Knowing me, it will probably end up being a bar. Baby steps here, remember?
  4. She needs to have a signature drink - I've seen the old ladies stick to the classics on this one (martinis or Tom Collins) but it really cracks me up when they get more exotic and order up a Pink Lady, Singapore Sling or Alabama Slammer. While I have been known to guzzle anything in the joint, my go-to drink is a Captain and Diet, with the occasional Bloody Mary. Must... find... better... signature... drink!
  5. She needs to be cranky and share her opinions at full volume to whomever will listen - Actually, I am already halfway there on this one.
  6. She needs to shop at the Piggly Wiggly - It was good enough for Miss Daisy. Check that box...there is one just down the road from my new place.

Welcome To The Island: Dwayne Johnson

I've had an unnatural crush on Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson for years; and I can place the blame for this squarely on my ex-husband. The ex had a white trash streak that encouraged his love of wrestling. When he turned the TV on for the latest Smackdown or Rumble in the Desert or what-not, I took to throwing myself on the ground and wailing protests. Wrestling is all fake! It is just a sorry excuse for a man's soap opera! It has low production... oh my!... hellllloooo there... who is that bronzed, tattooed god of a man with the wayward eyebrow who keeps talking about him cooking something and laying the smacketh down?

I'm not sure exactly what a "smacketh" is but I think I'll take two right on my candy ass!

Thankfully, my crush had the good sense to high-tail it out of wrestling and start making some movies. Granted, they are usually the type of movies that I hide behind my Masterpiece Theatre DVDs. He might not win an Oscar anytime soon but who cares? The man is great eye candy; and he seems to have a pretty good sense of humor about himself. He can raise that eyebrow at me any day.


From Roaring 20s To... Dirty 30s?

I am currently staring down the barrel of my 30th birthday. And it is a short barrel. Very short. As in, 4 days from now short. As much as I'd like to hold my head high and claim that I am embracing a new decade with grace and pizazz, truthfully I am looking forward to spending this birthday curled up in the fetal position, guzzling vodka and ignoring calls from so-called friends phoning in to taunt me.

"But Maggie", you might ask, "aren't you the one who can't wait to turn in to a crazy old lady?" to which I will gleefully cackle affirmation. But 30 isn't crazy old lady territory yet. I still have another 20 years before I can bust out the hats adorned with birds and feathers or wear a fur coat over a housecoat with gardening clogs. Since I am on the subject of fashion, allow me to make a clothing related analogy: Your 30s are like a black V-neck sweater from the Gap. Sensible. Practical. Necessary. But freaking boring!

Your 30s are when you are old enough to know better. You can jump up on a bar and start dancing when the mood strikes you in your 20s... or even in your 50s, because who's going to argue with you then?

This seems to be the decade about getting your shit together. Get married (or remarried) quick... it might be your last chance. Hurry up and pop out a few kids before your eggs shrivel up. Land that promotion before some snot-nosed kid fresh out of college steals it. Quit throwing your money away on rent and buy a house. Invest your money because retirement will sneak up on you. Let some grass grow under your feet. Settle down. Grow up.

When I was 23, I worked with a woman who refused to celebrate her 42nd birthday, choosing instead to refer to it as the 13th anniversary of her 29th birthday. I thought she was being silly at the time.

Now I understand...

Dirtbag Alert: The Angry White Guy Edition

Meet Roy Den Hollander, Angry White Guy

Hollander is currently suing Columbia University for the abolishment their namby-pamby women's studies courses, claiming that it is unconstitutional to use government funds to preach religious beliefs. What religious belief?, you ask. "Feminism"! (His use of apostrophes...not mine). Feminism is now an option for religious preference?... shit... if I'd have known that, I would have had that stamped on my dog tags instead of the boring ol' No Pref.

His other case, where he took on the plight of the poor male who is forced to pay bigger cover charges at clubs on designated ladies' nights, is still pending. In addition to being a douchebag, Mr. Hollander is also a lawyer who specializes in male discrimination cases. His entire law firm is dedicated to "battle the infringement of Men's Rights by the feminists and their allies".

STFU, Mr. Roy Den Hollander!

I have absolutely zero sympathy for The Angry White Guy. All their whining about how minority special interest groups are ruining the world with their liberal agenda. Yeah... it must be really hard for the white man to get by these days. My heart breaks for you all. Not only do men hold the majority in every sector of business, government and industry in this country... but then they have to shell out $10 to get in to a bar. The horror!

What really cracks me up is that ladies' night really is for men anyways. The entire concept of ladies' night it to lure women in to the bar for the guys. Why isn't there a mens' night? Because the men are already there. This isn't a case of discrimination; it is an example of simple capitalism. The demand (created by men) for more women in bars and clubs is met by these establishments creating a lure for women.

The Angry White Guy prides himself on being an old fashioned, take-charge, no bullshit type of guy. He idolizes John Wayne. He wishes we could all just go back to the time where women were ladies and men were real men.

So, I ask you this, Angry White Guy: Would John Wayne throw a hissy fit because he was asked to pay $10 to get in to a club while his date only had to pay $5?

Hell no! John Wayne would man up. He would slap down a $20, tell the door attendant to keep the change while calling her honey and pinching her on the ass.

Newsflash to all Angry White Guys out there: you can't have your cake and eat it too. Either be a crybaby or be a real man. And real men don't whine... or sue!


Dear John Letter To My Sofa

The moment I saw you, I had to have you. I had been shopping all day, having hit up four other furniture stores in the fifty mile radius. As a last ditch effort, I stopped by a store close to my place that was known for its marked up prices. There you were... in the back of the store. Someone had already bought the loveseat and chair, so you were in the group of mismatched furniture. Burgundy chenille fabric, modern design, super comfortable... I was already in love before I even saw your $500 price tag. With no hesitation, I slapped the plastic down and bought my first major piece of furniture.

The other love of my life hated you. The ex swore you were too big for our living room. He hated how your sleeks lines contrasted with all the hand-me-downs and bargain furniture that filled our apartment. He continued to sit on his ratty old loveseat that he had saved from the dumpster at work while I languished on my new purchase. Quite the love triangle we made!

Needless to say, you lasted much longer than he did.

It has been seven years. You have seen me through some great times. You followed me on the journey from California to Virginia. I found room for you in that oddly shaped living room in my first Virginia apartment. Thousands of miles separated us while you were in storage and I was overseas in Ukraine. After transferring all my worldly belongings from storage in to my latest apartment, we were reunited again. I jumped on you with glee and rejoiced in the sense of familiarity you brought. Six months abroad sitting on uncomfortable rented Eastern European furniture made me love you even more.

You have provided me with comfort. You have welcomed so many of my friends and family. You have seen me at my best and my worst. You have seen me grow up.

But the time has come for us to part. The move to North Carolina is a new chapter in my life... one that you will not be taking with me. A recent trip to a furniture store showed me that I am looking for something different. We have simply grown apart.

It was a sad day when I dropped you off at Goodwill this Sunday. My first adult purchase was being carted off for some other person to find comfort in. I hope your new owner treats you well.

I do miss you. My new couch won't be delivered until Wednesday. The living room feels so empty without you. But even as I sit here on the floor, I know that I have made the right choice.

With fond memories,


The Diet Diaries

I have been on almost every diet imaginable. Most are giant wastes of time. I hate the entire concept of dieting. This girl likes her groceries. Once upon a time, I could eat all that I wanted to without really worrying about buying bigger pants. Not anymore. It's like my metabolism saw my impending 30th birthday and decided to give me a nice "Fuck you!" as a present.

Slim Fast sucks because I truly believe that meals should be chewed, tasted and eaten... not drank. Atkins was great in its hey-day but the market for it dried up. When low-carb was all the rage, you could "cheat" safely. There were low-carb versions of pizza, pancakes, chocolate and chips. Now all you can find in the grocery store is the low-carb ice cream and the sorry excuse for bread. I tried to do low-carb again earlier this year but had to quit after I almost killed a co-worker at lunch for his french fries.

Faced with a trip to the Bahamas last year, I broke down and ordered the Nutri-System plan to shed some pounds pre-vacation. Yuck... I had better tasting food out of MREs during my army days. In addition to tasting like something that came out of an E-Z-Bake Oven, the stuff was expensive before you added all the supplemental groceries they don't tell you about in the commercials.

After cycling through diet after diet, I decided a few months ago that I would just try to eat healthy and watch my portions. No prescribed meal plans, no off-limits food, just healthy choices with portion control. Still working out a few times a week. Hell... I even started to incorporate some light jogging (Anyone who knows me well remembers that I swore I would never run again post-Army unless being chased). Great plan, right?

I got on the scale this weekend and saw a number I hadn't seen in a long, long time... and it wasn't a good one. This is serious now. No real plan of attack just yet but I haven't consumed over 1000 calories a day since Friday night. My blood is a toxicology nightmare with all the Hydroxycut I have popped. Sensible? Not at all. But desperate times call for desperate measures.


Does this make me a pinko communist?

I have to own up to being completely underwhelmed with the Olympics. In fact, I haven't actually watched a single event. I see the medal count whenever I go on Yahoo. I might catch the occasional clip or two watching the news.

How very unpatriotic of me, I know.

In my defense, I've just never been much of a sports fan. Sports is the one section of the newspaper that I toss to the side without even opening. Fanatical sports fans who paint their faces and get in to bar fights over team rivalries are like aliens to me. I managed not to attend a single sporting event at Purdue during my time there. Pre-game parties? Yes. Tailgating? Sure. Big Victory Celebration or We Lost Now Let's Drown Our Misery parties? Absolutely! The actual game itself? Not a chance in hell.

In an effort to get more rah-rah for Team USA, I dedicated a whopping ten minutes to watching Olympics-only news.

Members of the New Zealand soccer/football/whatever-the-hell-you-call-it team take off their shirts and perform some kind of mating ritual even after getting their asses handed to them by Belgium. That's kinda hot actually... maybe sports aren't so bad.

Hey... weightlifting. That could be cool! I like it when muscular men make funny grunting noises.

Oh sweet Jeebus! Is his elbow really supposed to bend in that direction?!?!? It's friggin' backwards! OUCH OUCH OUCH!!!

Screw this... I am going back to watching Bravo. Nobody gets hurt on Project Runway or Shear Genius.

Another 80's Trend

Fashionistas have been trying to bring back 80's style for a few years now. And I have dug my heels in protest. I hate 80's style. It isn't flattering; and it is just plain ugly. Pegged/rolled pants send me in to a blind rage. Day-Glo colors make me want to gouge my eyeballs out. Leggings have been known to induce fainting spells.

Having said all that, I do secretly dig crimped hair. Definitely not for walking down the street midday like Ms. Banks chose to do. And, yes, it does look a little trailer trash. But for those nights out when your ensemble needs that extra pizazz and you just don't feel like taking yourself too seriously. Hell yeah... bust out that crimping iron!

This is one of the rare 80's trends I can actually stand behind. What do you think? Cute trend or do I just need to go ahead with the down payment on my double-wide right now?


Welcome To The Island: Gerard Butler

Who else could make a skirt and a pink shirt look so manly?

Due to high demand (okay... only one person), a new member will be inducted on to the island once a week. Not only am I living in fantasy land, but I am also so unoriginal that I chose Wednesday aka Hump Day (because my sense of humor never progressed past year 12... hee hee) as my debut.

This week's addition: Gerard Butler. The man is simply smoking hot. And that accent... every time he opens his mouth, I think of Samantha Jones' line "If he can do that with his R's, imagine what else his mouth can do."

From The Cubicle Farm

Your tax dollars at work! Here is what has kept me awake in my cubicle this morning.

Apparently Chrystal and I haven't even scratched the surface when it comes to crappy names.

Pimping out "family values" is so 2004. A take on Obama that is aimed right for the single girl's heart.

I am not sure if I am turned on or scared shitless by this new condom ad.

This bastard wants to get rid of the entire month of August. If I don't get any birthday presents, I am hunting him down.


Know When To Fold 'Em

Upon arriving at my desk this morning and opening Outlook, I was slammed with the nagging suspicion that I was forgetting something. I kept focusing on today's date... August 12th... did I miss someone's birthday? Did I forget to pay the electric bill? Why does August 12th sound so damn important?

Duh... it was the day I got married. Today would have been our eight year anniversary. What a crazy thought. Eight years ago on this very day, I was standing in line at the Clark County Courthouse Marriage Office in Las Vegas with twenty other nervous couples. The paperwork was nothing. I would take longer filling out an application at McDonald's.

Eight years ago today, I was being swept away in a white limo to be married at a fine establishment called The Chapel of Love. I was wearing a purple sun dress and black sandals. But... hey... it's Vegas, baby.

Classy, isn't it?

Eight years ago, I was having a nervous breakdown in the bathroom of The Chapel of Love, ten minutes prior to the ceremony. I knew it wasn't a good idea. I wanted to run but I tried to convince myself that part of being an adult was to honor your commitments. I was afraid of letting everyone down. After I got divorced, I told my mom about that bathroom breakdown. She told me that her and dad would have grabbed me and walked out; then spent the rest of our time in Vegas partying.

Eight years ago, I was being escorted down the aisle by my father, who was trying so hard to choke back his tears. The ceremony was a blur to me. All I remember is that the guy performing it had a disfigured nose. I stared at it the whole time.

Eight years ago, I kissed Todd and was declared his wife. We were two stupid kids smiling at each other; having no clue what we just did. Love was a word we kicked around a bunch but the two of us never stopped to think about what it really meant. We were convinced that spontaneity and passion were essential building blocks for a long lasting relationship.

Eight years ago, I took the biggest gamble you can in Vegas. I used to swear that Vegas weddings were cursed. It was just too damn easy for couples drunk on love/lust/whiskey to jump in without thinking. Vegas isn't to blame. It may be a city for fools but it is (to steal a line from The King) the fools that rush in.

Don't You Dare!

I gritted my teeth when the fashion gods brought back skinny jeans. But this... I draw the line here!

Pegged jeans sucked the first time around. They haven't gotten any better over the years.


Name Blame

I saw a documentary on MTV called "True Life: I have embarrassing parents." One of the segments was centered on a set of triplets whose parents were full-time clowns. As in, picked them up from school and sat around the living room in complete clown gear. Clowns can suck it because they are just plain creepy... but that was not the most disturbing part for me. Get ready for this one. The father introduced them all as the Gramm family and his daughters as Candy, Holly and Millie.

Hold up... what?!?!? You named your kids Candy Gramm, Holly Gramm and Millie Gramm? Why, dear God, whhhhhhhhyyyyy?!?!?

I went to elementary school with a girl who had gotten saddled with the name Kandy Kane. I just hope that poor girl didn't end up sliding down the stripper pole. Hopefully she got married and secured a new last name... or just started going by Kandace instead.

In high school, a girl from my homeroom class had the first name Love and middle name Leigh. Awww... how lovely of her folks to have gotten so creative... especially since her last name was Funkhauser.

My friend Chrystal has the best name stories. She moved in to her college dorm room and saw that her roommate's name was Turquoise. Upon the roommate's arrival, Chrystal greeted her, pronouncing the name the same as the color. She was quickly corrected. Proper pronunciation? Turk-qwa-si.

Chrystal loves to tell about a family she knew who had three girls: Porsche, Lexus and Mercedes. When ol' momma got knocked up with a fourth child and announced it was a boy, a betting pool was formed to guess which luxury model he would be named after. Bentley? Royce? Corvette? Nope... the new baby boy was ushered in to this world as Diamante. Poor thing got gyped and named after a Mitsubishi.

Chrystal must be a magnet for bad names. One time her and I were at the mall, waiting in line. The lady in front of us started yelling at her younger daughter "Get your ass over here, Genesis." The little girl joined her mom and older sister in line. Read that again. Older sister! Why give the name Genesis to a child who is not the first? Is it not the first book in the bible? It means beginning, for Christ's sake!

I used to hate my name. Nothing good rhymes with Maggie. (Go ahead and run through the alphabet... I'll wait). There was always some rocket scientist who figured out that Maggie sounded a lot like maggot. Then there are the people who think they are original and bust out with a line from Rod Stewart's shitty song "Maggie May". Yeah, yeah... the morning sun when it's in my face really shows my age... thanks.... oh... let me guess... you think you have something to say to me.

Considering the alternatives though, maybe it isn't such a bad name after all. Well-played, mom and dad!

(But I would still love to kick the shit out of Rod Stewart!)

The new Sex and the City?

After hearing all the hype, I broke down and rented the entire first season of AMC's Mad Men. Instant addiction! Now I am trying to drum up support for the show but for very selfish reasons. This show is begging for a theme night. Remember when everyone would get together for Sex and the City viewings? Women would dress up like the character they most identified with and swill the ubiquitous Cosmos. Just think of the bomb ass clothes and hairstyles you could bust out for Mad Men:

Just swap the Cosmo for a martini or a scotch on the rocks. Voila! A new Sunday night obsession to cap off your weekend.

Way to represent the ol' US of A!

I never knew the old man had it in him. All these years... I would have pegged him as a tits man.


An Introduction to the Russell-Pfau-Lannon Island Theorem

Anyone who has ever hung out with Rosie and I (and, if you were lucky, Andrea Lannon... RIP) may have wondered why we shout "That man is SO on the island!" upon seeing a hot guy. To understand this, one needs to trace the roots of the Russell-Pfau-Lannon Island Theorem back to our crazed college days.

I really miss college sometimes. Not all that pesky studying or having to sneak food out of the cafeteria in order to stock your fridge. But I do get nostalgic for those nights where everyone would sit around the dorm room and have the most nonsensical, vodka-fueled conversations about off-the-wall subjects. Themes of socialism in Dr. Seuss books? Check. The heavy use of phallic symbols in architecture as a latent reminder of male dominance? Done that. But our finest moment: the creation of a Utopian society located on a fantasy island where my friends and I would turn men in to our sex-slaves. Ching-ching! We have a winner!

This island theory was simple. Andrea, Rosie and I ruled it as a triumvirate. Each of us chose a man to be our king-escort who was our primary companion (sometimes the king-escorts were off-limits to the other friends, other times we would loan them out. No true consensus was ever reached on that topic.) The rest of the island consisted of man-candy ripe for the picking.

Rosie has consistently had Val Kilmer on her throne for 10 years now.

Sadly, Val doesn't quite look like Iceman anymore...

prompting us to add this addendum: All men on the island will be from the stage in their lives where the 3 queens find them the most desirable... even if that was several decades ago.

My king-escort throne has been a revolving door over the years. First it was Peter Wingfield from the TV show Highlander. Past occupants include Russell Crowe, Dave Navarro, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and, for a brief moment, even a Backstreet Boy (shut up!)

My current?

All hail Richard Armitage!

What? You don't know who he is? Shame! Get on Netflix this instant and move BBC's production of "North & South" to the top of your queue. Prepare to swoon with his depiction of John Thornton, a mill owner from the north who is love with a preacher's daughter from the south. Or turn on BBC America for Robin Hood and watch him smolder as Guy of Gisbourne.

Just be careful googling him. My beloved shares a name with Bush's former Deputy Secretary of State who is nowhere near as attractive.

Dirtbag Alert

John Edwards admitted to carrying on an affair with another woman while his wife was battling cancer. Seriously?!? What could possibly make a man go out and chase tail while the woman he claims to love is fighting for her life?

**Disclaimer: I have to own up to voting for this man twice. I was a NC resident when he ran against Lauch Faircloth for the Senate in 1998. I voted for him again in 2004 when he ran with John Kerry. Man... I can never pick the good ones... even when it comes to politics!

I work in a male dominated career field so I get to see this dark side of men. I hear them regale the office with stories of how great their wives are, how they are so very much in love with them and what marvelous cooks/mothers/housekeepers/lays they make.

Then we leave town to go on business trips. The very same men will head straight down to the bar to pick up a sweet unsuspecting young thing for a night of debauchery.

Is monogamy really that out of vogue these days? Are these men seriously that hard up to get laid? Why do they even bother getting married if they are going to continue on with this behavior?

My friend Christen posted this on her website. I hate to crib from her but this is too irresistible!