Monday, January 23, 2012

The Princess Recommends...

I am so into this Old Chatham Sheepherding Company yogurt, which is creamy and yummy and provides 32% of your daily calcium. Yeah, calcium content excites me, especially since my mother cracked a vertebrae and suffers from debilitating back pain.  I am trying to avoid such a future, or at last postpone it. I also enjoy Total, Brown Cow and Siggi's, which is an Icelandic yogurt called Skyr that has elevated calcium levels. But this one is the most delicious. It's expensive, but the Princess' bone density is worth it, no? I gots to get myself back to Whole Foods for some more. Speaking of Whole Foods, I read about "Whole Foods Parking Lot" in yesterday's NYT, watched the video, and laughed my ass off. It's old (came out in June 2011), but so am I. Some guy takes the piss out of uptight Prius drivers getting aggro by the quinoa.

I like when this guy says "then I take it to the cheese counter."  And "pay my 80 bucks for 6 things and get the heck out. The express line is moving hella slow." I drove my family crazy all day reciting from and riffing on the video: "I'm going to take it to the stove now to make the ginger chicken;" "You're doing that homework hella slow;" etc. I amuse myself. The video takes place in LA, but things get just as real in the Montclair Whole Foods parking lot, post yoga.You don't want to be around me when my blood sugar is low.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Video Friday

Oh. My. God. I have always loved "Hello It's Me" by Todd Rundgren, but I had never before seen this 1973 performance on The Midnight Special. Boy am I happy to have stumbled on it when I got the urge to hear this song, right after I had the urge to hear The Fifth Dimension's "Wedding Bell Blues," which was inspired by Miss Pillsbury's rendition on Glee this week. There's a little taste of why my book remains unwritten.

Todd's look here is one of the sweetest I have ever seen in my life. The feathers over the eyebrows, the sort of winged suspenders, his dental deformity--I totally am a goner. Wait, I need to get another hit. Okay, I am back. Are his roots blue, or is it just the lighting? Because his fingertips look blue at one point. I completely support this fashion originality, and I hope Todd brings it to his upcoming shows at the City Winery.  My only complaint with this video, besides the subpar quality, is that there is not enough Todd. Less of the white grand piano, more feathery sweetness! Why the shot of the piano innards? More Todd!!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Princess of the Day

I love Downton Abbey. Oh yes. I am a sucker for a period drama, especially one shown on Masterpiece Theater. I love everything about this show--the comforting opening music, the intro by Laura Linney, the costumes, the total escape from my day to day responsibilities.  I don't care whether the show upholds my liberal values or what comment it is making on the class system. I just love the characters. When will Lady Mary and Cousin Matthew finally get together? What about Mr. Bates and Anna? I can't wait until next week.

And let me just say that I think some aspects of the life of Edwardian nobility would have suited me just fine. (I'm conveniently disregarding the inequalities of the era.)  Go ahead and judge me. I deserve my silly fantasies. At this moment my son is downstairs demanding I fix him some toaster waffles; would that I could have the kitchen staff see to it. Meanwhile, my hair, outfit and unmade bed could use the attention of a good lady's maid. Preferably one who won't injure me by leaving a bit of soap on the bathroom floor.

I especially am fond of Elizabeth McGovern, who plays Lady Cora. I don't remember seeing her in a movie since 1984 (Racing with the Moon with Sean Penn, to whom she was engaged before he married Madonna). She's been in London acting and raising the kids she has with her husband, a British director. How refreshing (and European?) that her face appears untouched by a surgeon's scalpel. She is almost exactly the same age as me (she turned 50 in July) and actually looks it! I mean this as a compliment. Name one other 50-year-old actress who appears 50. McGovern is very pretty, of course, but actually believable as the mother of grown daughters. I searched the internet and found this quote from an article in The Evening Standard:

Of cosmetic surgery, she says firmly: “It's always confused me why women do it. And the other thing that no one quite says is even if you've got your face perfectly smooth, as soon as you bring your hands up, or reveal your neck, the game's up. It's like two different people sewn on to the same frame."

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Slippery Slope

Yesterday, I tried out a new dermatologist. Yes, yes, yes--the fun never stops. Skin cancer runs in my family; I have moles checked, removed and biopsied regularly. An ad in the local paper for this dude promised no long waits. The doctor I had been seeing makes you wait for an hour, then rushes you out in 3 minutes.

This guy actually sees patients once a week at a plastic surgeon's office with a very convenient location.  Passing the huge "Plastic Surgery" sign outside, still clad in my yoga clothes, I was mildly worried that someone would spot me. I didn't want anyone to think I am considering having work done. Then the receptionist had me fill out all these forms as if I was in for a tummy tuck, breast implants or some other invasive procedure.

As promised, there was no wait. I was seen by a very young looking man, who declared the spot on my neck a mole, came at me with a needle to numb the area, and then sliced it off for a biopsy. He left a shallow hole that I hope will heal before too long.  The doctor decided the identical looking spot on my knee was a keratosis, which doesn't need to be biopsied, and froze that off with liquid nitrogen, per my request.

Finished with the medical portion of my visit, he commenced with the upselling. "You have a lot of sun damage," he noted. Sun damage seems to be the current medical term for freckles, which I have been covered with since early childhood. "Does it bother you?" Well, not before you put it like that. I don't even notice my freckles when I look in the mirror. I am an Irish Catholic with fair skin and a history of sunburns acquired running around Orchard Beach in the Bronx before the invention of adequate sunscreen. For the past 25 years, I have been vigilant about protecting myself from the sun, and I think my epidermis looks pretty decent considering what it has been through these past 5 decades.

I had to distract Dr. Dude from my freckles. There is barely a square inch of my body devoid of them. (Sorry guys, I'm taken.) "What bothers me are these broken capillaries around my nose," I told him truthfully. When I was at ELLEgirl I saw a fancy NYC dermatologist for one very painful lasering session that did NOTHING. Since then, I usually deal with the situation by not looking in the mirror for very long; sometimes I try to cover them with concealer, which then gets sort of clumpy and noticeable. He took a closer look. "You have rosacea," he said. "You have a generalized redness on your whole face." I do? I thought that was my healthy glow. He suggested two different kinds of lasers to "even out my skin tone."  It would end up costing four figures.

I actually am considering it. So I can sort of see how people become plastic surgery addicts. One minute you're having a medically necessary procedure, the next minute your lasering off this or that, trying to erase your history and your individuality.

Monday, January 2, 2012

My New Year's Resolution Fail

For the past several years my New Year's resolution has been: Be nicer. Strive to become a more patient, kinder, gentler woman.

It's not going so well.

Last night, Day One of the sweet new me, I went into my son's room to put something away and was greeted by an explosion of toys and books and Christmas presents past. The electric keyboard we bought him for Christmas sat atop a minefield of Lego projects in various states of completion, a broken electric card shuffler, his book bag spewing books and papers, two pairs of inside-out jeans, stuffed animals. His desk was hidden beneath a mountain of books. A box for his light saber had come crashing off the shelf onto his closet floor.

I exploded. "I don't know how you can take this!" Reader, I was not speaking in modulated or calm tones. I think I may have been perspiring. Threatening to commence Operation Leave it On the Curb: Toy Edition, I picked up a Star Wars toy the size of a labrador retriever. My daughter retreated to her bedroom, where she lay clutching her unicorn. My husband appeared and spirited away the light saber to a storage closet.

I attempted to collect myself, remembering, too late, my hours-old resolution. After some deep breaths, I returned to my son's room and began giving him saner instructions. "It' little...calmer," he said, super slowly. I started laughing.

"I'm glad you like my comedy, Mommy," he said.