Thursday, October 31, 2013

To Wear, or not to Wear: That is the Question

Halloween is upon us… hayrides, haunted houses, candy, pumpkin essence overload (not that I am complaining, you can ladle that gourdy goodness on anything and everything for me)... 
... and, of course, costumes.

Oh so many kinds of costumes.

Even “sexy” costumes. **GASP** Aka “naughty,” “slutty,” or “whorish.”

Hey now?!

You can hardly throw a broomstick in a costume shop without hitting an outfit branded with “sexy.” Simple supply and demand. So why does this topic get cauldrons boiling over?

Many eagerly board the black and orange Fashion Police paddy wagon, sirens blaring, “booooooo booooooo,” trolling for those they believe are crossing lines of decency this time of year. 

:: 311 in progress. Indecent exposure. Pirate’s booty… 
NOT a hidden treasure any longer. ::

:: We are in direct pursuit of a 288. 
Conduct not becoming of a naval officer. ::

:: Disturbance in the 3100 block of 13th Street...
of the Hocus Poke-us variety. ::

Make no mistake here, I am talking about ADULT costumes. 

I do not, 
would not, 
could not, 
condone any unsuitable costumes for children or young teens. 

Nor do I think exceedingly inappropriate costumes are amusing. If you are going for “shock factor” or need to accessorize your ensemble with a "Too Soon??!?" badge, it is probably just offensive or vulgar. 

Don’t be a “shit-head.” Yeah, that is a real a costume?! Oy.

I work in Finance and wear business attire at least 70% of the 356 days in a year. The remaining 30%, my wardrobe is supposed to abide by a long list of “age-appropriate” rules. Pfft. Yawn. May I have one day a year, one day, All Hallows Eve, when I can break out of it all; the corporate mold, the fashion laws and bylaws and slip into something that just might involve skin tight clothing, thigh highs or being scantily-clad? Pretty pretty pretty please with a push-up bra on top.

I’m certainly not asking, needing or wanting anyone’s approval.

Come autumn, many woman drink the orange kool-aid and use Halloween as an excuse opportunity to embrace all that is good about being "bad," and to that I say, “hooray for you.” Rock that “sexy” fill-in the blank. And for those who like to dress-up but enjoy a more conservative look, I shout “hell ya" for you, too. 

There are all kinds of pumpkins in the patches, even ones that never want to become jack-o-lanterns. Do we need to judge, label or dispatch the Fashion Po-Po out on those that might have an outlook unlike our own?

This time of the year always reminds me that it’s so much fun to have fun. Simple but true.

Life is short.

Smile more.

Laugh more.


Feel young again and have a blast!

After all, isn’t that what Halloween is all about?

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Yellow Flag on the Turf and on my “Date”

Football fans? Better be. No wusses allowed. Cleveland Browns fans? Eh, it’s rough, amiright? Gluttons for punishment, we are, but we can’t help ourselves. **Sigh**

Assuming anyone that remotely likes football has probably heard about or seen Brandon Weeden’s now notorious “worst pass ever thrown in the NFL” from the Browns' game last Sunday versus the Detroit Lions. “Worst?” Perhaps? At any rate, it is way up there in “boneheaded” passes, as even the quarterback, himself, described it.

Big thanks to Mr. Benny Hill for making this rendition some how tolerable, nay, even entertaining.  

Bad passes and bad football often go hand in hand when we bleed brown and orange. It is what it is. And bad “passes” and bad dates often go hand in hand for this Girlie. 

But never the twain shall meet, right? Au contraire mon ami.

Rewind two weeks. Browns are playing Thursday night… prime-time baby… awesome Cleveland weather (no, that’s not an oxymoron) and I am GO-ING. Woof! Woof!

A guy “friend” with season tickets asked me to go. Fourteenth row seats, might I add. He asked me to several “datey” kinda things, of which I declined every one due to the “date” nature of said invites. I had a boyfriend for a while and he seemed to respect that although he made it clear that if that situation changed he would like a “shot.” Well, I guess that target opened up… single… again.

I made it crystal before going to the game that I was “only interested in friendship.” Said it was mutual. Coolio.

Now mind you, this was the same guy that asked my opinion on some swim trunks a while back for a cruise he was going on. Sure. No problem. Imagine my surprise when I received 3 pictures of him modeling his beach attire. Let’s just say those pics did not get deposited into the Spank Bank.

The excitement to go to my first Thursday night game numbed my apprehension. I was honest and upfront with him.

Friends. Agreed. Nothing more to say than, "Here we go Brownies, here we go."

Pregame tailgating. Check. Food. Drinks. Check. Check. So far, so good.

Game time! 

I’ve been to a lot of Browns games, this by far ended up being the best game I have ever attended. The energy of an evening game. Exciting plays. And a big fat “W” at the end, 37 – 24 against the Bills.

Barring all that was dawgilicious about this amazing and exhilarating Browns win, my non-date was beginning to feel like anything but. Passes and penalties were abounding… not on the field… in the stands.

Underhand pass to my elbow. Flag on the play. False start.

Shovel pass to my shoulder. Flag on the play. Illegal motion.

Backhand pass to my lower back. Flag on the play. Holding.

Shuffle pass to my “I just want to be friends” handles. Not, not, not “love” handles. I was clear… friendship… only. Flag on the play. Illegal use of the hands.

Whoa, more passes flying around than I got with my last boyfriend.

I was lifted off my feet several times with a celebratory hug. Really, a high five would have sufficed. At one point the lift paralleled a pairs skating duo move. Dude. This is football and we are not on a date. Get with the program.

Not withstanding the barrage of yellow flags now at my feet, this seemingly very successful and intelligent man was loosing those attributes with each tick of the game clock.

Some girl stories being thrown in there amidst flags. Even going as far as showing me texts. Caveating his attempts to draw out my green-eyed monster by saying he doesn’t want me to be uncomfortable? Why would I care? I look quite lovely in green, but I won’t be donning my best emeralds or jades on your account. Sorry.

As if Mr. Handsy wasn’t bad enough, enter Mr. Cocky. Bragging. Flat out arguing with me about different subjects. Which, eh um, I was RIGHT. 100% correct. Beyond riled up, I just backed down and let that dog lie even though I wanted to BITE. Grrrrrr. I was not going to win that battle. Mr. Know-It-All knows it all. The Browns won, but I was not going to.

Several times whilst trying to add emphasis to a point, he’d end it with “How’s that?” Said as if he reverted back to Kindergarten. Excited because he was able to relate point “A” to point “B.” Connect the dots. So proud of himself, yet still needing the approval from the teacher. Yeah for you. Now it’s naptime. “How’s that?”

Coddling is always well received by a grown ass woman, as well, right? Wrong. Confident in our beliefs and opinions, we state them clearly. Yes? YES. For example, “I only want to be friends.” Damn, if I didn’t really mean that. And when I say “I like football,” damn if I really didn’t mean that, too. If one more time it was echoed “you really do like football,” in conjunction with a wild-eyed and bewildered look, someone was going to get chop blocked. Flag on the play. Penalty this time, my own. The grabbing and holding my hand while walking the downtown streets, certainly was a slick move by Mr. Handsy but also had a strong air of someone wanting to help me across the street. “Stop, Look and Listen before you cross the street.” Thank you Crossing Guard, but I mastered that lesson a long time ago. I got this. The fourth and long Hail Mary pass.

Cue the Benny Hill anthem again. That theme music is all too appropriate as this night and nonsense was approaching comedic levels. “Mah Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na. Mah Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na.” Great game. Terrible “date” that was never even a date to begin with.

So girls and guys out there alike, if someone tells you, “I only want to be friends.” Believe them. Seriously. Any interpretation or reading between the lines of that very simple and straightforward sentence, might get you a personal foul infraction of “Unsportsmanlike Conduct.”

How’s that?!?!

Let's go Brownies! Let's go! Woof! Woof! Let's keep the bad passes to a minimum, shall we?

Sunday, October 6, 2013

I’ve Come a Long Way Baby

Who had a birthday?

I had a birthday!

A mini-milestone of sorts, as I like to call it. 45. Yep. 45.

45 years old.

Or young??!

I passed through my 20’s and 30’s with little to no dread. Even 40. Came and went without incident. But 45? Pending anxiety rose deep inside of me, much like acid reflux or some other old-timers condition that is sure to be awaiting me in the very near future. Heartburn, that this, this year, just might be the year to change all of that. That the “happy” would be far removed from the “birthday.” That, perhaps, standing high on the top of the bell-curve of my forties would feel like “it’s all downhill from here Sista.”

I put my closest friends on alert that I wasn't sure if I will want to celebrate this year. Stay tuned girlfriends. But as the day drew closer, spending a night huddled up in my bed, possibly with a cat or two at my side, on the day of my birth sounded like a completely horrible idea. Whew.

Plans were made. The big day arrived and I was in a great and grateful mood. (Hint: “grateful” is a perfect catalyst to “great” things)

So now here I stand, 45, balancing on the peak of this decade. Being able to see clearly where I’ve been and what might be in store for me.

How’s the view from up here you ask? Let me tell you, the view is beautiful.

Your past does not predestine your future.

I look down the curve towards my past, where I've been, what I've done. The memories, while they are vivid in my mind; barely feel like they are my own any longer.

An evening many years ago, there was a single mother standing on one foot, the other foot freshly broken, making a box of Macaroni and Cheese for the gourmet square dinner of the day to feed her two young children. Her source of income threatened as she was a waitress, not enough reserve funds for even a gallon of milk, and an ex-husband who supported the race track or bookie rather than his children. This all equaled a fiscal emergency in that exceptionally meager household.

Over the orange glow from an imitation cheese product, that mother decided to enroll in college.

She did just that.

She put a tiny graduation cap on her rear view mirror to look at everyday for inspiration. “Treasure mapping.” The physical representation of want you want to achieve.

She went to school and worked.

She worked and went to school.

She broke another bone. This time a finger in 3 places.

Many trials and tribulations in those years… but…

On Mother’s Day 2001 she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting, in cap and gown, with her two children cheering her on in the audience. Doesn't get more “Kodak Moment” than that.

Of course, that “she” is me. I've come a long way baby. I can now afford dairy products. And then some. ;)

I trudged up and through hard times. Only distant memories now.

At 45, looking at the present and the future, I am lucky to have so many people around me that I care and respect. Warms my heart but certainly is not heartburn.

I proclaimed rather publicly, at work, on Facebook, or to any poor soul that had the misfortune to stroll pass me, that I will dance 45 songs at my celebration that evening in honor of the years I have been blessed with. A tradition I hadn't heard of before, but jumped, all too eagerly, at the idea when it was suggested to me. Thank you Mike Fong!

I recommend everyone start this tradition on their birthday. Pick something FUN.

Milestones – shimilestones.

This day was incredible. I danced my 45 songs and then some. On the 45th song I was in the middle of a circle formed by some of my favorite people in the world. A high point and I kept on dancing.

At 45 years old plus 1 day, I laid in my bed, wondering if anyone got the license plate number of the truck that ran me over? Every muscle, ligament and tendon in my body sore. If your blood can hurt, that, too was aching. Feet, knees, hips screaming at me and my non-stop dancing shoes (which were 5-inch heels of course). Nearly 5 hours of dancing is a lot. Who knew?

The old-timers conditions I so feared had arrived already. One. Day. In.

Bengay or not, I've come a long way baby and I've enjoyed dancing through a lot of it.

Happy Happy Birthday to Me!


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