Archives for September 2008

This, however, is something to put up with


# 24 – I wear the ugliest sweater known to man when I write.

When I saw Wonder Boys for the first time and got to the part where Michael Douglas wears that raggedy pink chenille robe while he’s writing, I almost died, because I do something very similar.

I bought the ugliest sweater known to man used from a thrift shop that sold clothes by the pound when I was in college. It was my “smoking sweater.” I bought it the sweater because I didn’t want to get my winter coat all stinky when Lady and I smoked Swisher Sweets on the dorm balcony. We took turns spitting over the railing, and thought being cigar smoking, lugie hocking girls made us so bad-assed.

I haven’t smoked a crappy cigar, or any cigar for that matter, in years and years and years and years. But the sweater gets lots of use. As soon as it gets cold around here, I throw my writing sweater on when I work.

It’s ESPRIT, probably circa 1988, made from acrylic yarn, about 5 sizes too big, and scratchy as all hell, but it’s really really warm. I guess it’s my security blanket or something. I’ve actually never really thought much about why I’m so attracted to my writing sweater. Maybe it reminds me of good times with Lady. Maybe it feels like my lifeline back to me when I’m spending time hanging out in someone else’s head. Maybe it’s a statement to myself that it doesn’t matter what I look like while I’m writing. Or maybe, I like it just because I like it.

On Tuesday, when my husband came home from work, I was wearing the sweater, which falls halfway to my knees, a pair of black and white running shorts, and big fluffy pink socks with black flip-flops. “Oh sweetie,” J said laughing, “Nice outfit.”

But damn, if I didn’t get some awesome work done on my April book on Tuesday. There’s magic in that sweater, I tell you.

#25 – I clean up real nice, I swear.

Something that’s been bugging me

While some of my blog friends are taking on serious political issues, like Beej talking smart about the banking crisis, or Howling Hill spreading the word about a Palin poll, I want to discuss something that’s been bugging me for the past few days: Jessica Simpson’s gas.

Yeah, I know. I’m all about the hard hitting issues today. Since my other site, Allie’s Answers, actually started as a column for the now defunct sister-site to I’m Not Obsessed, I feel that I can legitimately and unabashedly read INO on a regular basis. In case you don’t use celebrity gossip as junk food for your mind, I’ll fill you in on the details of said gas.

In a recent interview, Jessica Simpson, or J-Simp, as I like to call her, said:

“To be my man, you have to put up with a lot. I toot under the sheets, I spend a lot of money and I can belch the ABC’s.”

A bunch of INO readers then followed up with comments of the “Ew, she’s so gross!” variety. I’m not a Jessican Simpson fan, (that’s just not my kind of music), but when I first read her quote I thought, ‘good for her for admitting to being human.’

Then I thought about it a little more, and something about it really started to bug me. Why is being human and having human bodily functions something to “put up with?”

So what? She farts. Here’s a news flash for you: we all do. Everyone. You do. I do. Mother Theresa did, and I’m pretty sure J-Simp’s football playing boyfriend does too. I’m not saying we should throw a parade about it or anything, and I’m all for being polite in polite company, I just think it’s sad that J-Simp thinks that passing gas in the privacy of her own home is a lot to put up with. And I think it’s really sad that all these other women commenting think it’s so obscenely gross and feel the need to speculate that this somehow means she’s a sad person, or “a loser”, or “an embarrassment to women.”

But it’s not just about J-Simp and her gas. When did we start apologizing for being human? I’m sure it’s been going on in one form or another as long as homo sapiens have been in existence, but why? My dog never apologizes for the fact that he makes the rug smell like dog feet, or leaves big tumbleweeds of fur all over the house. And my cat has never once apologized for being an enormous bitch. What is it about us that we feel the need to?

I was watching Northern Exposure last night (big surprise there, huh?) and Chris in the Morning, quoting Goethe, said, “You are, when all is said and done, just what you are.” I believe Popeye also said something very similar.

Well, if that’s true, then what’s all the fuss about? Why can’t we just accept ourselves instead of wrestling with constant pressure to be “perfect” beings? Think about how many scandals, and cover-ups, and battles, and injustices are caused simply because we can’t accept the truth of another person’s existence or the truth of our own. I’m not saying J-Simp is her gas, or that the recently un-closeted Clay Aiken is his sexuality (also not my kind of music), or that anyone is ever defined by just one detail of their existence, but why are the human details, the little facts of being human, ever any kind of issue at all? Maybe if we could find a way to stop trying to cover up who we are, we could focus on what we can do.

100 Things – 15 through 23

15. I’ve had The Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros stuck in my head almost continually since I first heard it a few months ago, but I still think it’s freaking hysterical, and I’m not tired of it at all.

16. October is my favorite month.

17. The sound of leaves crunching underfoot is my favorite sound, and I don’t think I could handle moving to an area that doesn’t have real seasons, because I’d miss that sound too much.

18. Every fall I eat apples until my stomach hurts. I never learn my lesson.

19. I studied classical voice for about 10 years. I’m not saying I was ever fantastic, but I didn’t drive animals and small children to cover their ears and hide or anything. Every once in awhile, when J’s not home home, I’ll pull out one of my old accompaniment tapes and wail a little Schubert or Faure, but I hate hate hate singing in public, and I just won’t do it anymore.

20. I gave up coffee for a year and switched to green tea, but life just wasn’t as sweet, so I’m back on the sauce (sauce being coffee).

21. I don’t drink much, and my tolerance sucks (it’s kind of a chicken or the egg thing). When I have to fill out forms a the doctor’s office and I get to the line where they ask how many drinks I have in a month, I write in that for the most part, I only have a glass of wine every other month or so at the most.

22. I am more verbose than most forms allow me room for.

23. I hate holidays and much prefer every day life, and wish we could just celebrate the people we love when we feel like it. I am thisclose to swearing off holidays completely.