Archive for September, 2007

Madonna in Israel: Feh!

Sunday, September 16th, 2007

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Israeli police and soldiers at checkpoints near the West Bank cities of Ramallah and Bethlehem turned away thousands of Palestinians trying to go to Jerusalem for the Friday prayers, witnesses said.

In Jerusalem, police erected roadblocks around the walled Old City, home to the Al Aqsa Mosque, one of Islam’s three holiest sites, and to sites sacred to Jews and Christians. Hundreds of Israeli police were deployed throughout the area.

But thank goodness Madonna was able to secure a meeting with Israeli president Shimon Peres, who gave her a bible. I’m sure she can help bring peace to the Middle East. I like that she’s beginning to look like Bette Davis, but I’m concerned that her husband might be some kind of pork product.

My Pseud’s Corner

Thursday, September 13th, 2007

The great British satire magazine Private eye had a feature called ‘Pseud’s Corner,’ where any kind of pseudo-intellectual discourse was mocked. I miss it! So here’s my first tribute, and it’s a good one:

In the Los Angeles Times, tin-eared pop music critic Ann Powers reviewed poor Britney’s VMA appearance, and recalled a time when Britney’s “gorgeous form and defiant beauty” were “postively Nabokovian.”

Aaaaaah! First read Lolita, you idiot, before you refer to it. Lolita was 12 years old, and distinctly childlike. That was the point. God, I hate Ann Powers.

The Ultimate Fridge

Thursday, September 13th, 2007

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I’ve always loved the 50s style refridgerators made by Smeg, and now you can order them online! Pink is still my favorite but check out the other colors, too. The name ‘Smeg’ is just an extra bonus!

Funning Up The Workplace

Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

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If Office Jargon gives you a perverse thrill, you must read this essay by Mark Labash on the  movement to bring  “Coercive Joviality” to the workplace.

It’s about ‘the infantilization of corporate America.’ It is delightful reading material, and enlightening as well. I learned that the ancient Greek word for work was ponos, derived from the same root as the Latin poena, meaning sorrow.

Let’s Drool Over Camilla Staerk

Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

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I can’t remember how I discovered Danish-born designer Camilla Staerk, but I love her. Everything she does is so good that I can’t even take umbrage at her enormous oversized handbag. You can find her stuff at Brittique, a wonderful site for checking out the best British designers. Their sales are great, and their customer service can’t be beat.

It’s Not Porn, It’s HBO Porn

Monday, September 10th, 2007

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Nothing could prepare me for the awfulness of HBO’s new drama, “Tell Me You Love Me,” not even the deeply annoying “Californication,” Showtime’s own genital-driven atrocity starring that guy from the X-files.

“Tell Me You Love Me” follows the dirge-like unhappiness of three couples, who should all be shot, in my humble opinion. Two of the wives look like Sheryl Crow, and all three of the men are required to exhibit their balls, for some reason. While I’m sure that’s a treat for some viewers, I found myself dreading each succeeding sex scene. Are testicles the new black this season?

I wondered aloud why the show wasn’t considered porn, but then I remembered that HBO’s mandate is to be Not TV. That used to mean boldly original, back in the day. Now, it just means icky night-time soap opera.

Here I was so relieved to be through with “John From Cincinnati,” and look what I get! A bunch of dreary couples who can’t get along with or without sex, who are traumatized by masturbation and Tampax. Tonight’s opening episode ends with the 150 year old marriage counselor in bed with her amorous white-haired husband, who looks like he’s just wandered in from a Viagra ad. As her head moved down his body, I screamed and covered my eyes.

If they did anything involving his balls, I don’t want to know. I think a better name for this series would by “The Horror of Intimacy.” Be warned.

Allenna Ward: All the News That’s Fit to Print

Saturday, September 8th, 2007

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Just like any normal person, I am fascinated by stories about female teachers who have sex with their students. It seems like a recent phenomenon, but perhaps it’s just coming to light now. Mary Kay Letourneau will always be my favorite, but I’ve just read about Allenna Ward, a married, 23 year old middle school teacher who has admitted to having sex with five of her students, all aged 14 and 15.

Allenna Ward is a white Minister’s daughter from South Carolina, and her ‘victims’ were all black. I learned this by googling her after reading a small item about her in the Los Angeles Times. In the Times, there was no mention of race.

I assume that the race aspect was left out in a concession to political correctness. But to my mind, this is part of the story. It’s not the whole story, but it’s significant. I’ve tried to figure out a reason for it’s significance that doesn’t strike me as racist, and I’ve come up with this: By having sex with black boys, this white teacher has crossed yet another boundary, besides the one that forbids physical intimacy between teacher and student. I don’t want my newspaper to decide what part of a story is too racially inflammatory to report.

Opinions, anyone? Meanwhile, here is the mother lode of stuff about ‘women predators on campus.’

The Handbag Problem

Thursday, September 6th, 2007

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A new book called ‘Deluxe: How Luxury Lost its Luster’ cites some statistics about designer handbags that I find deeply upsetting. Apparently, 40 per cent of Japanese people own a product made by Louis Vuitton. Girls in Japan  will resort to prostitution in order to buy a Louis Vuitton or Hermes handbag.

In 2004, luxury brands collectively sold $11.7 billion worth of handbags and other leather accessories. Shit! I think about $10 billion of that was my fault, but I’m not taking the blame for the rest of it.

This horrible scourge of   “It Bags” and what it represents is a depressing subject for me, since I consider myself somewhat enlightened and devoutly anti-authority, but I still want a nice handbag. By ‘nice,’ I mean expensive. By ‘expensive,’ I mean that anything under $500 is unacceptable. By ‘unacceptable,’ I mean brands like Coach or Cole Haan or any other mid-priced brand. I don’t mind using a vinyl Hello Kitty bag if I get the urge, but otherwise it has to be an eye-popping luxury piece that says ‘Look! I’m Not Afraid To Waste Money!’

I’ve read The Theory of the Leisure Class, and I know about conspicuous consumption. I snicker at people who care what kind of car others drive. I like thrift shops and second hand clothes. I hate Republicans. But I am hopelessly caught up in the handbag thing.

Is it insecurity? Vanity? Status-Seeking? Advertising? Brainwashing? I’m not sure, but I’m hoping that ‘Deluxe’ will enlighten me. The appeal of Louis Vuitton has always seemed unfathomable, since those logo handbags are so drab looking. And I had no idea that the Japanese has switched their affection from Prada to Louis!

My enormous yellow handbag has stopped giving me a thrill, sort of like when you hit a wall with Zoloft and have to try Lexapro or Effexor. I am presently involved in a transaction with Vivienne Westwood, which may solve the problem. God knows I have prostituted myself to pay for it!

Owen Wilson: Boo Hoo

Wednesday, September 5th, 2007

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What’s so funny about Owen Wilson’s suicide attempt? I’m not sure, but an ABC news anchor couldn’t stop laughing when she had to report it.

Is it because Owen Wilson is such a jerk? Or because he is so privileged that the idea of his ‘pain’ just seems ludicrous? Is it his nose, or his hairdo?

Two of my friends dismissed my guilt for not caring about Owen Wilson by refuting my weak claim that He is a person, after all! Apparently the consensus is, no, he isn’t. What I’m wondering is, where are his band-aids? His wrists appear to be in perfect shape, as seen in some blown-up paparazzi photos. Where are the cuts, Owen? Did you even break the skin?

People who want to end their lives should jump out of windows or go visit Phil Spector. Poor Owen has only increased his problems by acting like a pussy (with all due respect, or course.) There are loads of suicide chat-rooms he could have logged  into for some decent advice. There, he could have found support and suggestions for how to ‘take the bus,’ or whatever term for death they’re using now.

Until someone tells me a good Owen Wilson joke, here’s mine. Owen Wilson goes into an emergency room, and the doctor says, Why the long face?

Fall Fashion 2007

Wednesday, September 5th, 2007

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The September issue of Vogue is pleasingly hefty, but in all other respects it is a huge disappointment. I remember the days when opening the September Vogue was a sacred ritual. You had to set aside a period of time to look at every page, letting the waves of sumptuous unaffordable suede and leather fantasies wash over you. Every fall, you were commanded to wear high boots and wool menswear and darker lipstick, as if they’d all just been discovered for the first time.

This year, Vogue has lost its authority and direction, I think. Maybe it’s the fault of the designers, or maybe it’s  Anna Wintour. How can you even believe in the fashion dictates of a woman who still wears a stupid pageboy with bangs when she has a grown-up daughter? Then, she goes and puts Sienna Miller on the cover. What next, Chloe Sevigny?

I miss the old Vogue, with its bossy mandates that left no doubt about what you needed to look for. I will never forget the precision of “Think yellow, like the inside of a banana.” Things were always “key,” meaning Follow these directions or you’ll blow it.

This year, Vogue wants you to wear ankle boots AND high boots, wide-legged pants AND skinny ones. Make up your goddamned mind, Anna. The one thing to be happy about is the end of the baby doll dress. I don’t even want to see a baby wearing one, at this point.

Here are the new trends, as if you didn’t already know:

1. The Bootie.   Sickening word, but don’t blame me. I like ankle boots, so I’m on board with this one.

2. The Menswear Look. You know the drill: slouchy trousers, neckties,   fedoras, bla bla bla.

3. Black Tights. Yay! The bare leg was too daunting for those of us who can’t stand the smell of the fake tan stuff.

4. The Funny Sleeve. Call if trumpet shaped or balloon shaped, just as long as it’s funny looking.

5. The Cropped Jacket. Yes, we’ve had that for years now, but pretend it’s new.

6.   The Clutch Handbag. No way. If I can’t get my sunglasses in there, it’s useless.

7. The Chunky Knit. Think grandpa, or soup lines in the winter.

8.   Grey. Everything must be grey, it’s all about grey, don’t even think of ignoring this one!

9.    The High Boot. Think biker or riding boot, then add around $800.

10.   Patent Leather. This makes me happy, but it could start making me mad. You know how I get.