Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Fashion Week

It's been a week of beauty and fashion. Not for me, mind you, as I continue to find myself pulling on Ann Taylor sweater sets and Gap skirts every morning before work and then racing to smear a little rouge on my cheeks two minutes before the shuttle bus arrives so I don't look like a paste-colored corpse all day.

No, no... I'm talking about my TV and movie entertainment choices -- namely, my usual Project Runway weekly episode (airing right now!), plus the addition of Miss Universe that was on last weekend and "The Devil Wears Prada," which I finally got around to seeing with my mom tonight after work.

First things first... Miss Universe. I have a bone to pick with Mr. Donald Trump, owner of the grand affair. Hey (the) Donald, why did your judges (ahem, Emmitt Smith?!?) pick the queen of plastic surgery, AKA Miss Puerto Rico, as the winner? Ugggh, I was so annoyed! Nose job, boob job... booooooo!!!!

Phony Beauty

Instead, the clear winner was Miss Japan...

"Kill Bill" Pageant Style...

And she cleaned up well too...

Why didn't she win?

Miguel, his brother, and I were all very irritated that Plastic Puerto Rico won. She sucked.

As for "The Devil Wears Prada," all I have to say is Meryl Streep was great, and the clothes were gorgeous. I didn't think the book was all that well written, but it was entertaining. My one critique about the movie, however, was that it humanized Miranda Priestly too much, while the book had her holding out as sheer bitch all the way until Andi tells her to "f*** off" at the Paris fashion show, which frankly was a lot better ending than the sappy movie ending. Ultimately, I am a realist. C'mon... like the girl actually wins over the bitchy boss? As if...

The meaner, the better...

Anyway, I must get back to my obsessed watching of Project Runway (the episode where they have to dress the cute little dogs!) and then get ready to go to bed. Tomorrow is another day of fabulous government surroundings... including women who -- no joke, I saw this on the elevator last month -- wear dark navy tights with open toed white patent leather sandals (and then white pantyhose with navy open toed sandals the next week) and silly matching headbands a la Hilary Clinton in 1995. Of course, I couldn't stop staring at the hideous fashion faux pas. Please, Tim Gunn, save the government workers...

This is what I'm talking about...

Hillary and the days of the headband... a look still alive and well in US government offices, along with dark tan panty hose and floral Dress Barn garments

And on that note, I am off for some beauty rest.

Oh wait!!! They just booted off poor dumpy little Katherine from Project Runway! Although she lacked pizzazz, I think that arrogant jerk Keith (who refused to dress up his dog) should have gotten the boot. More injustice in the fashion world!!!

Thursday, July 20, 2006

80s, Plump, and Pageants

Hello, here is my 7th grade class photo in 1986...

Don't you love that the upturned polo shirt has made a come-back?

I also thought the beaded barrette, only in use on one side, was pretty cool...

Now, fast-forward to 2006... I'm old and on a diet.

I made the mistake of jumping on the scale yesterday after working out in the gym, and my heart rather sunk. All of my efforts to get into shape in Arizona (bike riding, swimming, eating spinach salad) have evaporated into thin air (or rather, formulated on my thighs) since I've been home...

For one, sitting in a cubicle nine hours a day doesn't exactly help the waistline. Two, I've already discussed a weekend of Maryland fried foods and drinking with friends. And three, metabolism is a bitch over 30. Only a decade ago, I was able to eat Papa John's three nights a week, guzzle beer like it was going out of style, and lay around in the evenings after work. But oh ho ho, no more of that... oh no, the scale showed me what's really going on, and it's called b-l-u-b-b-e-r.

Aside from my new aim to chisel several pounds of fat off my body, I did indeed enjoy "Project Runway" last night...

Although I think pageants are Satan's gift to man, I have to give to gay little Kayne (the pageant gown designer from Oklahoma) cheers for bringing home the win. I thought his purple fabric was a bit gauche at first, but in the end, it really looked like a decent gown for an event as coquette-ish as Miss Universe:

The dress was much prettier on the runway than this picture shows...

Mainly because the model is doing some weird Daryl Hannah in "Splash" mermaid-like standing semi-backbend here... with a hint of a FUPA, which I highly doubt she has in real life.

And really, it was such a tie for the loser, although this dress didn't get its designer voted off:

It looks like something Amelia Bedelia would have worn to a formal dance... and the color reminds me of split pea soup. And what's up with the bizarro shoulder epaulets?

And finally, the real loser:

I call this one "turd floating in the toilet," for obvious reasons I think.

Must go to the gym now and work on cellulite-ridden legs. Ciao...

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Babies and Single Life

In homage to all of my procreating friends, today is "baby appreciation day..."

Here are the four latest photo updates I've gotten from girl friends turned moms... oh my god, are we really old enough for this?

Carson Forkner, son of Jo & Mark

I try not to be sappy, but this pic is just too cute.

Zosia Milauskas, daughter of Rick & Victoria

One of my best friends from junior high has THREE kids now, and Zosia's the littlest (and the only girl...)

Nathan & Thomas Smith, kids of Steph & Dave

I love this picture... yes, Nathan looks endearing, but I smell trouble ahead for little Thomas.

Newest addition... Jack Schwartz, son of Kelly & Josh

He looks really good for being born a month early and in the ICU!

Meanwhile, as for me, I am still living exactly the same way as I was ten years ago... went to happy hour last Monday night with my friends Meg, Sara, and Sue. Downed a strong vodka-infused champagne cocktail, then washed that down with a glass of wine. Laughed drunkenly for several hours while chatting with the ladies...

Friday night met Miguel for drinks after work and enjoyed a nice crisp Virginia lager at the Union Pubhouse in Alexandria.

Hosted a mini-dinner party last Saturday night... made homemade pizza (even the crust!) and guzzled down a bottle of red wine on my own since everyone else was either not drinking (pregnant) or drinking beer.

Next day went tubing on the Potomac River (not drinking... mildly hungover in the sun)... plummeted down a mini-waterfall and got a nose-ful of water. Fun!!!

This Friday... more drinking with my engaged but childless friend Mary after work.

And tonight --- PROJECT RUNWAY!!! Can't wait, can't wait, can't wait!!!

This was my favorite last week:

Honestly I'm not sure I'd ever really wear this, unless of course, I was lounging around in James Bond's 007 private jet, but it's so clean & sexy that it just says kitten all over it... grrrrr.

And my vote for the worst:

Blech!!! This really should have been the big loser. It was so messy and layery and busy and unflattering. One great big yuck from this judge... go away, chinless designer Jeffrey!

OK, must go now... will try to update again soon!!!

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Ruminations on Food

Here I sit at the Alexandria Public Library... taking advantage of my opportunity to hop on a computer before I start looking for books on a) sight seeing in West Virginia (for driving to my friend Melissa's wedding in Ohio next month) and b) whole grain cooking.

Why the cookbook? Well, one of my friends here just found out she's preggers (and she shall remain anonymous until she wants to announce it herself to the world) so I'm planning to make her a top-notch dinner in celebration on Saturday night. She's crazy about health food so I'm going to make it as au natural (sans processed flours or additive sugar) as possible, which could potentially be very difficult for my sugar-ladened, processed food indulging self. Wish me luck. Of course, she's been puking up a storm with morning sickness anyway so my efforts might only be enjoyed for a short while.

Today I went to lunch with a little man at work who is shaped much like a potato (who I know through work friends). He offered to take me to the building's "executive dining room," and I completely enjoyed feeling as though I were in a "real" restaurant (as opposed to a massive, industrial-sized cafeteria) and almost forgot I was at work for an hour and a half. Ahhh, we gazed out over the tree tops, nibbled on salad, veggie pot pie, and fruit & cream for dessert (I personally was also imagining that I was dining with one of the hot World Cup players as opposed to the balding mini-man really facing me... who is very nice though, I might add).

For a moment, as I watched the wait staff scurry about, I was also reminded of my days as "salad bar girl" at Miami University's Student Union in 1991, where I was employed at the upscale "1809 Room" (for professors & their guests only)... I had to don the same black polyester tuxedo, stained white shirt, clip-on bow tie, and black tennis shoes as I carted grape tomatoes and sliced cucumbers out to the salad bar for the restaurant's patrons.

It should be noted that this was not my worst job ever. In fact, I rather liked it, as every time I went back to the fridge to get more veggies for re-stocking, I would also grab (OK, illegally procure) a fortune cookie out of the massive SYSCO box in the back storage area (hell, there were so many cookies in there, no one would notice a few missing). I must have read about ten fortunes each day I worked, none of which seem to have come true, I might note.

The worst food service (or any industry) job I ever had was my one-month stint as a "Bob's Big Boy" waitress in high school. For some insane reason, I believed I would actually like being a waitress there, but I soon learned that I had no ability to multi-task, customers generally freaked me out completely, and I had the memory of an Alzheimer's patient (which, ummm, I think I've mentioned before...). This tended to be rather displeasing to most people who were tortured by my poor service... leading to many repeat requests... "Ma'am, uhhh, ma'am, I asked for ketchup about 25 minutes ago..."

In addition, "Bob's Big Boy" is not exactly at the top of the restaurant feeding chain. Again, memories flow back of sad sack polyester, tan pantyhose, and Reebok "walking shoes." I do remember liking the cook, a college student named Sherman, a lot, but he sucked at cooking, and I always took the blame for his mistakes. Remind me another day to talk about the infamous "liver & onions" incident involving an older woman with a large bandage strapped across her face (nose job?), ranting and raving about her displeasure before dropping a penny for me on the crumb-coated carpet. Total humiliation. But then again, why in the hell did she order liver and onions at Bob's Big Boy, for chrissake?!?

Well, since I've ended that on such an upbeat note, I should be going now to undertake my own quest into the fora of whole foods cookbooks... I so wanted to add a picture of "Big Boy" in today's blog entry, but the damn library computer won't let me right click on anything so I can't save the picture I found. Darn it!!!

Anyway, cheerio for now... until later, yours truly... The Total Non-Foodie & Cereal Eater Extraordinaire, Madam K.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Still Alive

I have a feeling that I have lost my readership. After working so hard at school last semester, procrastinating and loafing around my apartment writing blogs, I am really letting you all down now. Of course, even at my pinnacle last spring, I only had about ten regular readers, but still...

So here's the scoop: I am still working. Working and blogging don't mix. I am still taking public transportation. This chops into my free time in a fairly serious way. And I like to work out at the gym after work... more free time minimization. Not to mention, I have a rather busy social life... (YAAAYY!!) that also keeps me busy in my off-hours.

These are the highlights of late (mostly upcoming adventures):

1. My last day of work is August 11, then I'm taking a week of vacay, and then it's back to the pizza oven known as Tucson.

Bwaaahhhhaaaahhaaaahaaa... I will scorch you, o people of Tucson!

2. I was supposed to be going to Atlanta last weekend with my friends Laura and Jen to visit our other college friend, Kelly, for a mini college reunion/baby shower, but Kelly's water decided to break at Babies R Us on July 1, and now she has a newborn son (welcome to the world, Jack Schwartz!) and doesn't want visitors. Sad face for missing my friends. Happy face for KC & Josh.

This translates as "For Babies' Explosive Water Breaking"

3. The newest vacation plans involve a drive to western Ohio on the weekend of August 5-6 to attend my other college friend Melissa's wedding. Melissa is, aside from being generally hilarious, a rather unorthodox and independent person, and so she has planned a wedding reception in the barn of her parent's farm, complete with hay bale pews, a baklava wedding cake, and a crocheted dress purchased on the Spiegel catalog for under $70. Not to mention, she loves to drink and has encouraged people to wear shorts at the wedding (although sitting on a hay bale in shorts doesn't mix in my opinion, but then again, I have sensitive skin)... so it should be a rather raucous party.

4. I am also hoping to visit my friend Steph, her husband Dave, and their two boys, Nathan (age 18 months) and Thomas (born this past Cinco de Mayo!), at their beach house in North Carolina the week before I come back to school...

Insert Kit and Miguel.

and finally...

5. "Project Runway" starts tonight!!!!! I am ecstatic, of course. My mom and I are going over to my friend Jen's house to watch it tonight over a Mexican dinner that she's cooking. Ole!!!

I'm already salivating at the thought of Michael Kors's total judging bitchiness!

And on that note, and with relatively little humor this evening for the sake of time, I say (like Heidi Klum)... auf wiedersehn...

Monday, July 03, 2006

A Rather Unhealthy Weekend

After swimming out of the buckets-full of rain we received here in DC last week, my friends Sara, Meg, and I headed to the beach last Saturday for a vintage bathing suit fashion show that our other friend Hilary was in charge of organizing. (More on it all later when I have time to hook up my camera to the computer).

However, very briefly, we dined on Maryland fried chicken, enjoyed the full sunshine, and nearly roasted alive in the 90-plus degree heat (although I am not complaining, given that it's like 110 or something insane such as that in Tucson right now...).

Fried Chicken = Fat Stickin' (on my thighs)

We also shopped on the mini-boardwalk in Chesapeake Beach, and I indulged in buying more than $10 worth of "penny candy" like taffy and caramels (which I have not finished eating, BTW).

Oh, so tasty, although I concede that "Boyer's Peanut Butter Cups" can't hold a candle to Reese's... what with the plasticky chocolate flavor of the cheap peanut butter cup imposter

Then yesterday, Miguel and I took our marathon "John Wilkes Booth Escape Route" tour (8 am until 10 pm) and rode in a massive tour bus all over eastern Maryland and Virginia with our 83-year old Marine Corps Drill Sergeant military historian guide with a bunch of old tourists and chubby couples.

All Aboard... Calling all Geriatrics and Plumpies!!!

Actually, it was a lot of fun... and I tried Maryland fried flounder for the first time at Captain Billy's Crab Shack. (Yes, two fried Maryland foods two days in a row does not lead to a trim waistline, I know... and let's not even discuss the penny candy again...) I will discuss this whole trip later when I get my photos to upload, as we took a number of good pictures of the day!

Fried Flounder = Some Extra Pounders (again on my thighs)

Today I worked and got out early at 3:30, rode the bus to my mom's (where again, I was the only English speaker and sat next to a Central American woman wearing the tightest jeans I have ever seen in all of my life), and now am planning to have some sangria with my mother, who is off work today.

Come to mama...

Tomorrow I shall shamelessly lie around the entire day, paint my toenails, and perhaps go with Miguel to our friends Nichole & Luis's house for a BBQ later in the evening. Sans fried food of course.