Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Selfless Act of Swearing off Skinny for Bikini Season

I hate Bikini Season. Hate it with the passion of the Christ. But it’s here, just like it is every Memorial Day Weekend. This year I am extra under-prepared. I haven’t worked out consistently in a month and I’ve been eating everything my chubby little heart desires.

A tub of icing? Yes, please, and pass the sprinkles.

Mozzerella cheeseballs floating in a vat of olive oil? Even better! And I’ll need a loaf of white Wonderbread to go with it.

A bottle of wine? Sure, but what will YOU drink?

The point is, I should probably stop before my cellulite reaches a point where it will scare small children or take over a small Japanese fishing village, blob style. If it were winter, I wouldn’t have to. I could throw on some sweatpants and get back to my Double Cheeseburger McDonalds Meal.

As I get older, it gets harder and harder to starve myself in the name of attractiveness. I’ve been in a long term relationship for about five years now and she has to love me even if I weigh 500 pounds, dammit. At this point, I’m weighing my vanity against my hunger and sadly, I’m just not vain enough. I know! How did that HAPPEN? By being fat this season, I’m letting other girls, possibly single girls, look better by comparison. Maybe one of these girls will find love. Maybe she will fall in love and give birth to the future President of America! So really my not being in shape for Bikini Season is a charitable act that will help others! I wonder if that makes my grocery bill tax deductible?

Natasia Langfelder

My Three White Hairs

Yes the title of this post is a reference to the classic television show “My Three Sons” and no, I’ve never seen a single episode of it. But let’s get down to business.

I’ve had three white hairs since I was 16. At the time, I liked them. I named them Schlameel, Schlamazel and Jo. When I was 16, Nick at Nite played a lot of Laverne and Shirley. And Jo is named after Jo from “Little Women”, not gay “Facts of Life” Jo. I was actually more into Blair. Anywho, these white hairs were expected. My aunt on my dad’s side had started going grey at 16 and I was relieved that these three were the only ones. Also, I like to think that I wore my white hairs ironically, kind of like, pre-hipster ironic.

Schlameel, Schlamazel and Jo continued to be the only white hairs in my life until my 26th birthday last month. All of a sudden, I’ve been finding a new white hair every day. A tiny little reminder of my slow march to old fat-assery. These hairs aren’t even in a place where they can surreptitiously co-exist with me. They sit on top of my head and loudly declare themselves, like freaking assholes. I really hate them. I miss the days when it was just the four of us. Now I feel like my three white hairs invited all their friends and acquaintances over to my house because they were bored with me. Those little whores totally betrayed me.

Basically, the women on in my father’s family have been grey from their early 20’s and my mother’s family has been dying their hair since their late 20’s. You do the math - I’m screwed.

Natasia Langfelder

Sunday, May 9, 2010

The Mixed Bag of Mothers' Day

For the last 20 years, Mothers’ Day has been a mixed bag here in the Parker household, a bewildering blend of obligation and elation, dejection and reflection, sadness and gladness, as I mark the occasion as both a daughter and a mother.

As a daughter, I do my Mothers’ Day card shopping in the Shoebox Greetings section at Hallmark, finding the more staid selections disingenuous.

“Happy Mothers’ Day, Mom”

*open card*

“Thank you for not using spit to clean my face when I was a kid.”

That’s about all the sentiment I can muster when selecting a Mothers’ Day card, for while ‘tis true I owe my life to my mother in the most literal sense, ‘tis equally true that any acknowledgement of Mothers’ Day on my part stems from a sense of duty rather than from any deep feeling of love and respect. My mom made “mistakes” too numerous, too selfish, and too disturbing to enumerate in what purports to be a humor blog, but suffice it to say, they don’t dispense Mother of the Year Awards to mothers who leave their seven- and six-year-olds home alone overnight in favor of spending the night with a boyfriend. While my tales of balancing on a chair to cook dinner for my younger sister and myself do make for interesting storytelling, it’s not exactly the stuff after which June Cleaver was modeled.

As a Mom myself now, though, this is also a day where I reminisce about every step in my 20-year-old son Kevin’s life, from conception to the moment he left for work shortly before 10a.m. this morning. This is the stuff of which the more cheerful reflections are made – the eight months of 24/7 “morning sickness” which resulted in my being one of the few women in the world who never actually gained an ounce while pregnant (Yes, as a mom, you find joy even in eight months of regurgitation once that wondrous little creature comes into your life); the photo albums replete with snapshots of my perfectly clad little man, back in the days when I had jurisdiction over his wardrobe; and the countless weekday evenings and weekend early mornings spent on the baseball field or at the ice hockey rink, the latter at which, as an eight-year-old, Kevin once remarked, “I don’t need to carry my equipment bag; I have people who do that for me.” Those “people” were his father and me and we were more than happy to oblige our little Gretsky-in-the-making.

That’s not to say there weren’t some challenges along the way. Getting Kevin through high school remains one of my greatest accomplishments to date and I’ll be happy if he gets through college on the six-year plan.  And we've had our share of shouting matches, the inevitable clashes which mark the late teen years when, as a parent, you're seemingly no longer needed for anything other than financial support and your son becomes all-knowing and omnipotent (in his own mind).  But overall, Kevin's a good kid – kind, smart, witty, and inexplicably handsome.

Today, despite his night owl proclivities, which, let’s face it, he gets honestly, he set his alarm early so he could have breakfast with me before heading off to work a 12-hour day parking cars for the rich folks who’ll be dining “at the club” today for Mothers’ Day. In some uncanny way, I don’t mind not having him around, as any regret for being without his companionship for the day is replaced by an enormous sense of pride, knowing that he’ll be making the day more pleasurable for countless other mothers who are out celebrating the holiday.

I hope all those Moms spending the day at Trump National Golf Club have their day made just a little bit brighter by the handsome blonde-haired, blue-eyed young gentleman who’s working valet parking today. While you may see him simply as the polite valet who’s fetching your car post-brunch, I’m very proud to call that young man my son.

(P.S. – Be sure to tip!)

Candy Parker

Friday, May 7, 2010

Bringing Text-y Back

A CNN blog yesterday highlighted a study released in March which indicated that 10% of those under the age of 25 “wouldn’t mind being interrupted by an electronic message during sex.” Seriously?

This revelation gives rise to many questions, the most prominent of which in my mind is what kind of horribly uninteresting and non-participatory sex are these kids having that they’d not mind being side-tracked by a text message? I have to think that this has to be a straight-people thing, right?

I can envision some poor 18-year-old girl just lying there while her inexperienced, myopically self-concerned, and entirely hormonally-driven boyfriend of the same age grunts and pounds away, completely oblivious to her needs in the matter…

*Lady Gaga “Bad Romance” text alert sound*

She reaches for her iPhone, always within arm’s reach.

“Wat r u doing?”

“Just hvng SEX, but he’s almost dun.”

“Gr8. Wanna meet L8r? Like in 3 mins?”

Girls – if you’re having sex during which you even hear your text message alert, much less pick up the phone, read the message and respond, you and/or your partner are doing something dreadfully wrong.

At the erudite old age of 48, my advice is this - don’t settle for the kind of sex where receiving a text message mid-act is a welcome interlude. If, during sex, you’re thinking about Tweeting, updating your Facebook status, or are in any other way engaged with an electronic device not operated by your partner, ditch the dud – there has to be an App for that.

Candy Parker