I'm prettier than you are.
Tuesday, 31 December 2002

Just because I have no resolutions of my own doesn't mean that I don't have resolutions for other people. And they're not for celebrities (I'll leave that to Cindy Adams or someone from the New York Post) or for my own friends or family. No, they're for "ordinary" people I don't even know but who I think could really benefit from an overhaul.

This idea came to me while on the treadmill at the gym this afternoon. (By the way, the sauna suit is great! I just covered the big red Bally's® patch with a name tag that declared "Hello, My Name is Penelope! Happy New Year!" and no one was the wiser!) A guy, probably about 55, passed in front of me (coming from my right, just so you can picture it) on his way to the mat area, and as he did so, he stared at me with what he must have thought was a sexy leonine hunger in his watery eyes. I had nowhere to look, really, but straight at him, but I have this marvelous way of looking right through someone who repulses me. So I did it. He looked back at me as if to say, "Take a good look at me as I pass, young lady. You're gonna love what you see."

And then he passed completely. All 5'6" (my height), 150 pounds (not my weight), shiny spandex shorts and matching tank top of him. All fuzzy reddish thinning hair of him. All white socks pulled up his calves of him. All no "athletic shoes" of him.

That was the kicker. And that was what, aside from the rest of his horrid appearance, made me hate him above all else and got me fantasizing. No, not about the meat 'n' potatoes (really all potatoes and no meat, if you really want to know) he had on display, but about the various things he should resolve for 2003.

So, Jackie Mason, Jr., if you're out there reading this, and you haven't yet made your list of resolutions, I've taken the liberty of doing so. You see, I may have appeared to ignore you at the gym, but that doesn't mean you made no impression. Here is your list, in no particular order of urgency:

  • You will buy another ensemble to wear at the gym. This isn't the first time I've seen you, and it probably won't be the last, so if we're going to be forced to share the same space, the least you could do is make sure I don't have to see the hideous outline of your crotch. Or your underarms. Something in a nice, looser, breathable fabric (Coolmax® is really neat!) would be a welcome change.

  • You will start wearing acceptable socks. The tall ones you have make you look like a demented schoolgirl. In addition, any socks you do wear in 2003 should be clean. Which brings me to ...

  • You will wear athletic shoes while at the gym. How did you do your cardio? Were you wearing Dansk clogs, like the slouchy broad I saw heading toward the elliptical trainers?

  • You will never, ever, under any circumstances — I don't care if someone's threatening to gouge out your eyes with a melon-baller or standing over you with a gun to your frizzy head — do a headstand in public again. Especially a headstand where you spread your matted-hairy legs apart in a "V".

Actually, if you prefer to keep it simple, you can just make one resolution:

  • You will join another gym.

Happy New Year!

fresh-baked at 02:05 PM
Listen up ...

... or down or around or whatever your favorite preposition may be.

I just have one thing to say about this whole new year shpiel. (And if you're itching or aching to know what I'm doing tonight, well, then you have to read my recent post. If you're itching or aching otherwise, it may be that you've come down with a terminal case of blogonorrhea, in which case, well, see ya, bye, have a nice life, which should be ending shortly.) It's got nothing to do with resolutions, so don't get all happy thinking I'm going to be posting a list of bogus items I hope to stop or start doing once the ball drops and the clock strikes.

It's just this: Can everyone please stop saying "2K3"? It was bad enough three years ago when it was "Y2K". So knock it off already. Make that your resolution: I, _____, resolve in 2K3 [you can say it here, because it's not 2003 yet], never to refer to the coming year as "2K3".

See? It's easy. So now you can still drink heavily in 2003. Smoke, too. And not go to the gym five days a week. Or whatever else it was that you were thinking about resolving.

Now get outta here. Go home, if you're at work. And please, don't think you're cute by saying to anyone, "See you next year!" That was funny (sort of) the first time I heard it, in, like, third grade, but now that I'm a senior in high school, it's just lost some of its punch. (The punch is spiked, by the way. But don't tell!)

This time last year: Dropping the Ball

fresh-baked at 11:27 AM
Hottt Stuff

Never mind the health risks. Never mind the fact that any "water weight" lost will be regained once fluids (a cringe-worthy word if ever there was one) are reintroduced into the system. Never mind that there's no way one size can fit "small to large". Never mind the guy's facial expression ("Yeah? So I'm wearing a really gay silver spacesuit. What's it to ya, punk?").

What I want to know is, How do they expect me to wear this thing to Equinox with that big red Bally's® advertisement so boldly and squarely placed o'er my left tit/hooter/bosom heart?

Found in "Taylor Gifts" mail order catalog(ue).
They have a website!

fresh-baked at 09:54 AM
Monday, 30 December 2002
Liner Notes

Apparently quite a few people — many of whom actually know me or have spoken to me on the phone — didn't know that I was the voice behind "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus", found here. Imagine that!

And for the record (no pun intended, really) (and besides, some of you younger readers probably don't even know what a record is!), although it is my voice, it is a "fake" one.

So there you go.

And so go I.

Enjoy! (over and over again)

fresh-baked at 02:54 PM

sign outside church at 29th and Fifth, where LIZA was married!

"I have no desire to travel."

A friend actually said this to me a while ago. He's never set foot (or hand, or ass, or any other part of his body) outside this country. His travel within this one has been limited to that which is necessary for his career, but it hasn't been extensive.

He may as well have told me he had no desire to eat or breathe or watch a three-day Brady Bunch marathon-a-gogo on TVLand while indulging in Chinese food, cocooned in flannel pajamas and an almost illegally soft down comforter!

I just don't get it. I can understand if someone hasn't travelled because he is paid minimum wage and every penny he earns has to go toward making sure his three kids and wife are fed, clothed, and have a place they can call home. I can understand if a person is so damned ugly that he rarely leaves his house, and when he does, he wraps himself in gauze because he would prefer that little kids think of him as a funny scary mummy rather than stare and point at his hideous, contorted gnome face. But to have no desire to travel at all? I'm not gettin' it.

Someone else told me he really didn't see the need to go to Europe because he could always go to ... Busch Gardens. And he meant it. No doubt he thinks the fine folks at Olive Garden serve up some damn fine authentic Eye-talian food too.

Saint Augustine of Hippo (speaking of which, I am in love with this) said, "The world is a book, and those who do not travel, read only a page." Well, yeah. I agree, Mr. Saint Augustine, even if your quote sounds like something Nellie Schwenk of Anytown, U.S.A. sent in to Reader's Digest in order to receive $25.

Here's the part where a lesser girl would continue the limp book analogy and tell you to read voraciously. But since I'm not that kind of girl, I'm just saying, Get out there. Do some travelin', man.

P.S. Looking at pretty color pixtures of other countries on this here internet isn't the same thing as actually visiting them. Really. That's like, well, jerking off while wearing Playtex gloves. (The nice yellow kind.)

Travel back in time: One year ago today.

Mini-Update (10:21 a.m.): I just realized that I'm retarded. I included a link to a rhino, when I was talking about St. Augustine of Hippo. Rhino. Hippo. Same thing. Duh.

fresh-baked at 07:32 AM
Sunday, 29 December 2002
Short Story

OK, so it's your prerogative, I suppose, to wear shorts to the gym, even if your legs are so overwhelmed with cellulite that the various dimples, bumps, lumps, and fat pockets could still be seen through a rubber wet-suit. (And that goes for you, too, ladies.) I mean, hey, if you're truly there to work out, you'll probably get a little warm 'n' stuff, so it's fine. (Well, not "fine", but I can semi-sorta understand. Really.) But why oh why, if you wear shorts, do they have to be the very short, very loose-legged style whose leg openings flap (or flop or flip — your choice) up when you're lying on the mats doing crunches (with bad form, I might add)? And why do you have to wear them when you know your "trainer" is going to have you lie face-up on a stretching table thing (yes, that's the proper term) and then take one of your legs and press it up toward your nose, thus exposing a "good" (bad) third of your rump roast? I'm sorry, but I just don't think the world needs to see your crotch foliage.

End of story.

fresh-baked at 04:00 PM
Saturday, 28 December 2002
I Object!

Why ME?

I thought they'd forgotten about it. A couple of months ago, when I received notification of the impending summons, I actually thought, "Well, this certainly blows, but hey, they'll probably just forget about me." As each week passed with no further notification, I thought all was smooooth sailing. But no. This afternoon: my boat, she was rocked.

Now, I know I'm supposed to be honored that the good state of New York values me as a citizen, and I'm supposed to go around saying, "I'm proud to do my duty for my country," and say it doesn't bother me. I'm expected to say it's the least I can do and that I'll take my duty very seriously. But I'm not. And I can't.

Why do I see myself, once chosen (because you just know they're going to pick me, even after I tell them I beat babies, believe in capital punishment even for non-criminals, and answer every question with a hearty "Ziminee zow!"), entering the courtroom on the first day of the trial, dressed in a huge bathrobe, a string mop atop my head, carrying a cardboard briefcase on which I will have scrawled JURY DOODY in thick black El Marko? And why do I see myself in the little room where the fate of the defendant is decided, slurping lo mein noodles from a take-out carton and doodling the defendant with Xs for eyes, his tongue lolling from his mouth, and his neck snapped in stick-figure gallows a la "hangman"?

The only upside to this entire fiasco is that I'll have something semi-amusing to report on the afternoon of THURSDAY JANUARY 23RD, 2003.

fresh-baked at 04:44 PM
Friday, 27 December 2002
Saint, Elsewhere


My mind is elsewhere, kids. My attention turned to other pursuits. But fret not, I shall return tomorrow with tender vitriol. Or maybe a heart-warming holiday story about a young boy and his pet rabbit.

Have a great Friday night. Don't get too drunk. (And if you're "legal", you're too old for that shit anyway. And if you're not, well, knock it off. It's not cute.)

fresh-baked at 07:35 PM
Thursday, 26 December 2002

what a difference a day makes

fresh-baked at 04:13 PM
A Christmas Story

I know you're dying to know how I spent Christmas. I mean, other than at or around 11:55 a.m. and 3:47, 5:27, 7:16, and 10:46 p.m.(s). Well, I'm just dying to tell you. So you see how that works out? It's all about give and take. It's all about sharing. Isn't that nice? (No, it's revolting. Just get on with it.) (OK, I will. But don't rush me.) (Oh, just go back to bed.) (Be quiet. Don't tell me what to do!)

OK ... where was I? Oh yes. Yes. Christmas festivities in the Jewish household. Although the DOG isn't Jewish, the other three of us — Taxi Taxenbaum, Mewy Mewstein, and your fabulous hostess, Jodi Greengoldsilverbergmanbluthrosebloomowitz — are.

The apartment was redolent with the mouth-watering aromas of a Christmas feast ... being cooked in someone else's apartment. (Actually, since the French people moved in downstairs, I've been treated to a dizzying parade of fantastic aromas, including what I think is actually French toast.) "Show-offs," I said with a disdainful sniff. "Bigshots with their turkey and their fixin's ... or accoutrements." And then I whipped up a bag of microwave popcorn and popped open a can of Diet Coke avec lemon.

I fiddled (on the roof? no) around with the computer and my beautiful new scanner (no, I have not and will not scan my ass! please!), and after a while, I got the feeling something was missing. I couldn't quite identify what it was. Gifts? No; we don't do that. Relatives from far and wide, converging on our palatial digs, wearing heinous Christmas sweaters and bearing hideous concoctions? No; we don't allow that. Figgy pudding? Frankincense? Frankenstein? No, no, and no.

Then I realized what it was: Chinese food. I mean, really! After all, what's a good old-fashioned Christmas without the traditional Jewish feast? So we called for delivery. Or, rather, the DOG did. (Please. I don't call.) And in less than half an hour, our table was laden with a bounty fit for royalty. Or at least the kind of royalty that accepts vegan wonton soup.

More computer fiddlation, more scanner admiration. Email. A few "chats" via AIM. Quite a bit of quizzical attempts at Bezier curves (a graphics thing). And I'm sure some TV so bad that I can't even remember what I watched.

And some TV so good that I can't believe I haven't watched it before. It's a British show called "Coupling" that's probably been wildly popular since its inception but that I will now treat as if it's my own fresh and new discovery. (I did the same thing with Macy's Herald Square. "Say, Gerald, have you heard of this marvelous new store that opened up around, oh, I'd say 34th Street? It's called Marcy's ... Macky's ... I don't remember. But it's a huge place. Great stuff. You really should check it out sometime!")

And that was, well, that. Or it.

It was a magical day!

Next: New Years Eve!

fresh-baked at 06:20 AM
Wednesday, 25 December 2002

Since I've been playing (and quite successfully, I might add) the part of a hermit for the past two days, I thought I would just change the banner a little to reflect what I've seen when I've dared to look in the mirror. Don't worry, though ... if you want to see the "regular" me, all spiffy 'n' shiny, just go into The Gallery or my archives.

But if you really love me, you'll love me just the way I am, no matter what. (Right, Billy Joel?)

fresh-baked at 10:46 PM
Let the spirit move you

Earlier today, while the DOG and I were enjoying a traditional Jewish Christmas feast (Chinese food), Taxi, the actual dog, while lying on the floor watching us unblinkingly for any sign of an offer of food, decided to grace us with his speech about the true meaning of Christmas. (Linus, that blankie-hugging crybaby from "A Charlie Brown Christmas", has nothing on my dog.) The speech was so moving that I decided to share it here:

Christmas isn't about a new bone with real meat on it. Christmas isn't about a new pull toy. It's not about fancy kibble or a new fleecy blanket or a great new collar. It's not about earmuffs to keep the dog warm or those little boot things so he doesn't freeze his paws off. Christmas isn't about any of that stuff! No, Christmas is all about the love. Love and togetherness. But now that I think about it, it would've been nice to have a new fleecy blanket or something. It would've been nice if you would've gotten off your asses and done something for the dog! So you know what? You can keep your love. I'd rather have a fleecy blanket. And you can keep your togetherness, because come 2003, I am outta here.

And he actually thought that would move us to let him lick our plates clean? Right.

fresh-baked at 07:16 PM
Winter Wonderland

I wonder what happens in the four minutes between this:


and this, which immediately follows on the scrolling marquee:



fresh-baked at 05:27 PM
Lindt Condition

Lindt truffles

If you think about it (and really, why should you even bother?), eating an entire 10.6-ounce box o' bonbons isn't really that bad. You shouldn't need a calculator to figure out that that comes out to 1,760 calories. So what if they contain almost no nutritional value and those calories are "empty"? (But look! they do offer some protein! and calcium! and even iron and Vitamin A!) At least the centers of the truffles aren't empty; they're filled with molten mouth-fun! It's GOOD to eat 24 truffles in one day! And if that's all you eat for the entire day, well, then, you should be pretty damned proud of yourself, because if you'd chosen to eat three square meals, your calorie consumption would have been more substantial. But who needs square meals when little round treats are to be had?

P.S. For the record, I prefer Teuscher. But these were lovely too.

fresh-baked at 03:47 PM


fresh-baked at 11:55 AM
Tuesday, 24 December 2002
Concerted Effort

Nice outfits, eh?

OK, so we may not be the Christmasiest around here, but that doesn't mean we're completely lacking in spirit. If we were, would the DOG have drawn the scene above* (I colored it in — and look, I stayed within the lines and everything!)? And would I have recorded this classic?


A few "notes":

  • "DOG" stands for "Distinguished Older Gentleman", with whom I live.
  • My dog's name is Taxi. He says "Plim!" a lot in real life. (Oh, be quiet. Stop acting like you don't make your dog talk too.)
  • My cat's name is Shana. (Just so she doesn't feel left out.)

* This is the second drawing of his that I've displayed here. The first can be found here.

fresh-baked at 03:34 PM
Christmas Heave

Ooooh, hi! Thanks for calling! No no no, don't worry, I'm not busy! I'm just sitting here at my desk gabbing with some of the girls ... oh, you know, the usual lunatics! It's all just too exciting! I can't stand it! Yay! I'm wearing my pretty sweater — the red and green acrylic one with the big Christmas tree appliqués and glittery threads (like tinsel!!!) on the front and a really nice snowman appliqué on the back — and my miniature tree ornament earrings and Santa pin with the nose that lights up when you pull the little string (oh, you have one too! isn't it the cutest!?) ... and, oh dear, I've stuffed myself full of all of the cookies on all the girls' desks (they're all delicious, no matter what that mean girl Jackie in Accounting says! and besides, it's the thought that counts! and they were all made with love!) ... in fact, I've been nibbling on goodies all afternoon and haven't done any work at all! ... What's that? You either? Oh my goodness! Well, anyway, they're letting us go at 12:30, but I'm having such a good time with all of my best friends here in the office, and with you on the phone, that I almost can't bear to leave!

Hey, listen, I do have to go now, but if I don't talk to you tomorrow, have a wonderful Christmas! Don't eat too much! And keep your fingers crossed for snow! I love you, too! Merry Christmas! Have a happy!

fresh-baked at 11:48 AM
Monday, 23 December 2002
Kids "R" ...

... a whole bunch of things. They can be cute, they can be fun, they can be charming and witty and fabulous. Yeah yeah yeah. Whatever.

I hate that "Children should be seen and not heard" saying. Sometimes what they have to say is actually semi-interesting, but not in the cloying "Kids Say the Darndest Things" way with Bill Cosby doing his smushy Jell-O pudding face and rolling his eyes. Sometimes I'd rather talk to them than their parents. But sometimes, well, I wish they would heed that hated saying and just stand there looking semi-cute. Cute and mute.

Take this kid in line in front of me this afternoon at Kids "R" Us. He was about seven years old, regular size (not scrawny and not fat, neither tall nor short). A sprinkling of freckles. Dressed in ordinary clothes, including a knit hat from which peeked wavy red hair. Accompanied by a youngish (early 30s) woman with an English accent. I'm guessing she was his nanny.

She smiled at a SpongeBob SquarePants gift bag and asked him if he ever watched the cartoon.

"Oh, I never watch television," he said, with a snooty sniff and a perfunctory glance at the gift bag. "The only thing I ever watch is the Discovery Channel, the History Channel, and Scooby-Doo." He paused and looked up at her face. "And occasionally baseball."

"Baseball? Oh, that's nice. I like baseball too," Nanny said.

"Yes, but I watch it only occasionally," he clarified.

Oh look. A young Frasier Crane. Master Crane probably doesn't drink Sunny D or eat PopTarts either. No, Little Lord Fauntleroy will only imbibe fresh-squeezed apricot nectar and dine on the finest of brioche. Pinky extended.

I hated him. I wanted to smear peanut butter on his chin, plop him down on a rust-colored shag carpet in a faux wood panelled TV room, shove a stuffed SpongeBob SquarePants into his arms, prop his eyelids open with toothpicks a la "A Clockwork Orange", and force him to watch the Cartoon Network until he either bled from the ears or started talking like a regular kid and not some miniature jackass.

Please, kid. There will be plenty of time for that 30 years from now. And by that time, hopefully you'll have grown out of it, and down instead of up, and find yourself in your cozy family room, rolling around on the floor with your own kids, laughing like a hyena along with them, as they point at the TV at that "old" cartoon you never watched when you were their age.

And hopefully you won't dare change the channel.

fresh-baked at 09:13 PM
Liquid Lunch

Serving Suggestion

You know, it's not always tofu-a-gogo around here!

Here is the recipe.

Aside from my contention that something flavored "watermelon" should be pinkish, like the fruit's flesh, and not greenish, like its rind (or antifreeze), I give this elegant epicurean delight rave reviews!

Dinner: Pez, assorted fruit flavor. Because it's important to have a balanced diet.

fresh-baked at 02:44 PM
Sunday, 22 December 2002
Fame and ...


Ahhh, fortune cookies. The most anticipated part of the Chinese food experience. Not for the too-yellow cookie itself, of course (although I do eat the cookie and not just smash it inside its cellophane wrapper the way my sweet little sister does), but for the message inside that holds the key to my future.

They're only good when they're actual fortunes. I don't like when they just tell me something I already know, such as "You like Chinese food." Or make a lame statement that has nothing to do with foretelling the future. I don't think I've ever gotten a message of that variety and then not screamed (yes, screamed), "It's a fortune cookie! It is NOT a statement cookie!"

So anyway, the above fortune was contained within a cookie I ate this week. And now I'm all atwitter. I'm wondering which of my persistent, secret desires is soon to be realized. Just in case I have to clarify what I want in order to earn the promise of this fortune, I'd like to list a few persistent, secret desires that I would like realized. (This list, of course, is by no means complete.)

  1. Johnny Depp will come to my house to hang out and watch movies. Nicely, though, and without ruinous event. I don't want any of that asinine infamous room-trashing to occur. Now, I know it's no secret that I have a "thing" for Johnny Depp. The secret is that I really only want to hang out with him and watch movies.

  2. I will be able to make myself invisible by sheer force of my will. Currently I can do the invisible thing, but it requires a lot of "red tape" and the filling out of so many forms and applications that the effort renders the entire undertaking a colossal waste of time and energy.

  3. I will have reverse X-ray vision, so that when I am confronted by the stark nakedness of locker-room women bending over to dry their hair, insta-pants and -shirts will suddenly clothe them, and thus I will be spared the inconvenience and discomfort of shock treatment to eradicate the trauma. (I look terrible with those little node things attached to my temples. It's not a good look.)

  4. Eliza Dushku, as she appears here.

Now all I have to worry about is just how soon is "soon"?

fresh-baked at 11:37 AM
Saturday, 21 December 2002
Ice of Life

In the past week or so, I've gone up to Rockefeller Center several times to force myself to participate at least marginally in the holiday festivities. I figure if I'm not going to have anything to do with gift-giving and party-going and all the other insanity, the least I can do is physically place myself in the center of the excitement in order to observe. After all, I'm not a total Scrooge. I don't begrudge anyone else their holiday shenanigans. I just don't want to actively engage in any myself.

The first day I went up, on 12 December, I took quite a few photos of people skating. I originally wanted to just take them of people falling on the ice, but given that most people picked themselves up very quickly after falling, I only got a few shots of people actually down on the ice. So I decided to take pictures of people skating, too. As it turned out, the photos I took were different from what I originally intended to shoot; thus, my experience was completely different from what I thought it would be.

For some reason, I was fixated on a little girl, no more than three years old, on the ice with someone I'm guessing was her father. Something about her just riveted me. I don't know if it was that her dad was so gentle with her as he held her arms up so she could try to stand up on her skates, or that he hugged her so sweetly when she turned to him, or that he seemed so patient with her. I don't know. What I do know is that I couldn't stop thinking that maybe no one else accompanied them and that I was the only person there taking photos specifically of the two of them. I didn't feel like I was intruding on their experience. I felt like I was sharing it.

Then I imagined the little girl 20 years from now, walking past Rockefeller Center with her dad during the holiday season. Her dad would ask her if she remembered the first time she skated, the time he took her on the ice and she cried and turned to him for comfort. And she wouldn't remember. It was years ago, after all, and she'd skated several times since then. She wouldn't remember, but he would, and he wished he had a photo. If only someone had been there to take their picture.

Then I realized that I will never see this little girl or her father again. I won't know if she ever went back to Rockefeller Center, with or without her dad. I won't know if she remembered her experience. If she remembered being cold and burying her face in her dad's shoulder. And she will wish someone had been there to take their picture.

And I wish, already, that I could share mine with them.

More Rockefeller Center photos can be found here.

fresh-baked at 05:39 PM
Friday, 20 December 2002

Yep, she's a lush!Happy Birthday to my dear friend Kelly!

Although she professes to hate her birthday, she recently decided she'd try to enjoy it anyway. I hope that today she's making the effort she said she would. And I hope she's drinking an extra few glasses of her favorite red wine and realizing just how thrilled I am that she's in my life, even if way too many miles separate us.

Some people say it's not possible to forge real friendships online. They have no idea just how wrong they are. Kelly is proof (100%).

fresh-baked at 08:02 PM
You Don't Say!

Please don't ask me why I detest the holidays. There's no deep-rooted psychological reason. There's no underyling trauma. No, I was not beaten with a wreath or strangled with garland in my youth. No, I was not molested by Santa. Or even an elf. And it's not because one year I saw Mommy doing more than just kissing Santa Claus underneath the mistletoe.

The same people who ask why I abhor the holidays also ask me why I don't drink or eat meat. Or why I don't want to have kids. Or why I'm not married. Or why why why a thousand other things.

These are the same people who tell me to "smile" on the street. And the ones who ask me why I walk so fast. And where I'm going, and where the fire is.

To these people who question anything I may do or not do that is not what they have chosen to do or not do, I offer this in response:

fresh-baked at 02:47 PM
Thursday, 19 December 2002

In order to save everyone the hassle of asking me what I have planned for New Year's Eve, I will just say here that I have no plans for New Year's Eve. But my planlessness is intentional, on purpose, and planned, so don't cry for me, Argentina. (You either, Peru.) No, I have no plans, and yes, we have no bananas (actually, I think I do have one, but I'm not sure), but that's the way I want it, and that's the way it's staying.

I'm not going to a fancy dinner. Or a party. Or a club. I'm not getting dressed up all pretty-like. I'm not rolling up the rug and then cutting it. I'm not participating in any hooha, hullaballoo, or hanky-panky with the hoi polloi. And no matter how much Dick Clark begs and wheedles and cajoles and bribes me, I am absolutely not going anywhere near Times Square. The only ball I'm going to see is the one that Taxi plops on the sofa next to me in an attempt to engage me in a rollickin' game of fetch. That's it.

I just detest New Year's Eve. It doesn't matter where I spend it, either. I've spent it here, in Manhattan. And many a "there", including, but not limited to, Spain, France, and Portugal (but can't recall the specific cities [specificities?]). But location makes no difference: New Year's Eve does nothing for me.

I've heard that whatever you're doing when the clock strikes 12:00 a.m. and the ball reaches the ground, is what you'll be doing for the rest of the year. One year I was — brace yourself — doing step aerobics (yes, it's true!). Another I was on the phone with someone I couldn't be with in person when he was with someone he didn't want to be with (which is obvious, of course, given that he was on the phone). Another year I was having a picnic on a bed in Spain, gorging myself on all sorts of Spanish junk food delicacies. Those were the good times.

The worst celebration was when 1987 was forced out of the picture by 1988 and I was forced into Philadelphia by my then-boyfriend and a couple of our friends to have the time of our lives. Even before midnight, we were ready to leave, and wound up wishing we'd never left home in the first place. At midnight, I think I was complaining and pissed off. Which proved that yes, that whole thing about spending the next year the way you did at the stroke of midnight, is true.

It's not that I don't like that another year has passed. I don't care. There's nothing I can do about that. It's just the desperation of the celebration that I detest. The forced cheer. The special deals (dinner and dancing, prix fixe, surrounded by pricks). The pressure to do something big and bold and spectacular, just because the planet completed another orbit around the sun.

Let's just toss New Year's Eve on top of the obligatory holiday compost heap and call it a night. Because that's all it really is anyway.

fresh-baked at 03:25 PM
Wednesday, 18 December 2002
What's in Store

I have been entertaining a fabulous houseguest since yesterday afternoon. Because this is New York, and this is New York During The Holidays, and he's one of my best friends ever, I've gone along with his desire to do semi-touristy things. This afternoon, for instance, he insisted on pulling me into FAO Schwarz. (Yes, it's the toy store in "Big", and no, there's no "t" in "Schwarz".)

I've been in FAO Schwarz many times, but have never felt the wonder and awe that I know I'm expected/supposed to feel. I haven't wished I were four years old again or had my very own four-year-old. And I never stumble out of there wishing I had a few thousand extra dollars to plunk down on a motorized child-size sportscar, a life-size stuffed lion, or everything ever created that contains the delirious cherubic smile of Thomas the fucking Train.

However, one part of a display actually did catch my eye on the way out of the store, and since it actually made me laugh when I was dreading the walk home down Fifth Avenue, I thought I would share it with you here. Because after all, isn't that what The Holidays are all about? I mean, other than wasting spending way too much money on time with overpriced, mass-produced garbage beloved family and friends?

Tomorrow: Santa's lap!

fresh-baked at 10:11 PM
Tuesday, 17 December 2002
Unusual Suspect

This morning on the way to the gym (yes, this time it was on the way there, not on the way home), the only other person on my side of Broadway for several blocks was a man about half a block away. It was still pre-dawn, so I couldn't see him that well, but from what I could see, he was in his late 60s or early 70s. He inched his way up the block toward me with the aid of a wheeled walker.

The first thing I thought was, "Oh god, now there's an easy target for a mugging. If someone's out looking for prey, this guy's going to be a pushover." I started to feel a little sorry for him and his inching and his hunched-over body, and then pictured him mangled and twisted in a doorway, his wallet (a bifold, I imagined) spread open beside him, both of them the victim of a $4.00 crime.

Then I started to worry. Not for the welfare of him and his hunched body, overcoat, wheeled walker, wallet, and $4.00, but for my own safety. The wheeled walker and inching feet were ploys to throw me off and gain my sympathy so that while I was thinking, "Oh, that poor old man", the 25-year-old ruffian that he really was would straighten up, kick aside the walker with feet that all of a sudden could run quickly enough to close the 20 feet between us in a millisecond, and then pull a huge gun (with silencer) from beneath the overcoat and kill me for the $40.00 in my bifold wallet.

I hummed silently as I approached, feigning nonchalance. I looked away slightly as I passed (not a good idea, because I was thus giving him ample opportunity to attack), holding my breath. And then felt his massive arm throw itself across my throat and tighten against it as the cold steel of the gun pushed itself against my face.

And then I quickly looked over my shoulder and saw the old man slightly hunched over his walker, inching his way down the sidewalk to prey on his next victim.

fresh-baked at 02:21 PM
Monday, 16 December 2002
Sound Barrier

In a city of 14,000,000,000,000 people, it's almost impossible to find a place where someone else will not be present. And I actually don't mind, believe it or not. As much as people get on my nerves, piss me off, and generally disgust me, I like having them around when I leave the apartment. There's something a little disconcerting about going outside and having the sidewalk all to myself, such as on Memorial Day weekend, when it seems like everyone else has abandoned the city.

Still, I don't like when they stand so close to me that I can feel their breath on my neck or their hands on my ass. On the subway, of course, it's usually unavoidable, and hey, let's face it: sometimes it's kinda fun to have your ass fondled by someone you don't know and whose face you'll never see. But in general I don't like or appreciate being bumped, prodded, or jostled, especially when the person who feels it's necessary to bump, prod, or jostle can easily maneuver himself out of the way to avoid it.

(An aside: You have to laugh whenever you do that little "dance" you do when someone approaches you in the opposite direction and both of you try to get around each other. If you get all mad and huffy when your progress is impeded, you come off as an extreme jackass. Just so you know.)

However, there is one variety of space invasion that I find absolutely inexcusable. One barrier I don't like crossed, under any circumstances.

Last week I met someone uptown for lunch at Candle Cafe. My "date" was waiting for me at a small table in the back when I arrived. Two women occupied another table behind my chair, and I instantly disliked them for a host of reasons, not the least of which was that their drone was distinct above the general din and clatter.

When they got up to leave, one of them went behind my companion's chair to retrieve her coat from a rack, and the other stayed behind me gathering her things. Rather than just wait until they closed the physical distance between them, they chose to talk directly over our heads, loudly, their strident voices almost palpable between us. It wasn't just a word or two. No, it was an entire conversation. A continuation of the banal drivel that I'd been forced to endure while they were seated.

It was bad enough that I had to hear the details of their inane gabfest when they were seated at their own table, but worse to be forced to witness it across and above my own. It was as rude as if they had just plopped their fat asses down at our table and continued their conversation. Or reached across our table for the salt and pepper.

Don't people realize that their voices are also an entity, as capable of invading someone else's space as an actual body part? Just because sound doesn't have physical shape or visible form, that doesn't make its presence any less offensive when it thoughtlessly invades someone else's space. Not only did these two self-important bitches have nothing to say, but they took so many words to say it. Each yapping exchange above our heads was akin to an elbowing on the street.

It took almost every ounce of strength I had not to stand up and give each of these harpies a sound slap across her face. Literally.

Or verbally.

Because really, either way it's the same thing.

fresh-baked at 04:43 PM
Sunday, 15 December 2002
For My Bubby

clink!In honor of what would have been my darling Bubby's 92nd birthday, I've decided to just toast her all day long. Whatever you drink tonight (whether it's Diet Coke, beer, champagne, a martini, some colorful drink with a froufrou umbrella, or just a glass of water), I would love you to join me in a special L'chaim!

This one's for you, Bubbeleh. (You can call her that, too, or "Clara Molly". She'll respond to either.)

fresh-baked at 06:43 PM
Saturday, 14 December 2002
Chococat Cap

Since I'm not about to accommodate the requests of those who find this site by searching for "free nude pictures of Jodi" or any variation of that theme, and there's no way in fucking hell I'd ever post pictures of my "rack", I thought I would at least satisfy the needs of some of the less pathetic people out there who find my site by searching for images of something I am willing to share.

Yes, it's my Chococat shower cap. Although I only mentioned it once (in an entry written mere hours before I made the big life-changing switch to Movable Type), you would be surprised (really) how many people come here a-lookin' for it.

So here it is, in all its pert sauciness. And I must blushingly acknowledge that the photo on the right is pretty damned sexy. It's just so ... well, you can see for yourself. Look.


Cappy meow? Happy now?

N.B. For those of you looking for ways to make "fake poop in [your] diaper" or "fake vagina spaghetti", I have just one tidbit of advice: Go with the real thing. It's better that way.

fresh-baked at 05:43 PM
Friday, 13 December 2002
Anger Management

I made a really important decision this afternoon while at the gym. (Yeah, that's right, this afternoon. I didn't go pre-dawn, the way I ordinarily do. But I went, OK? I went, and I look fabulous, and feel even better, so don't give me any lip. Or tongue. Please.)

Anyway ... I made a decision while forced to witness, thanks to my ridiculously sharp peripheral vision and hearing, the fortyish, blondish, plaid-shorts-and-big-T-shirt-wearing, no-range-of-motion-at-all-and-legs-barely-moving, Stairmaster-leaning-to-the-point-of-draping, yes-my-outfit-is-from-Land's-End LOSER two machines to my left take call after call and make call after call on the cell phone that she kept on her magazine tray (yes, she was reading too, because such an important go-getter certainly must multi-task!!!).

Instantly, of course, I felt nothing but disdain (for her outfit) and disgust (for her "workout") and ... rage (for everything else) ... and I really wanted to, well, you know, say something, as I have done in the past with other people. Because, you see, I'm a bit militant about propriety in certain situations. I know that comes as a complete surprise. I dunno. I just have this thing about people not heeding the signs that say not to use cell phones on the gym floor. If you can read, you can heed. (I just made that up. Isn't it pretty? Don't steal it.)

The decision was this: I am not going to confront people who may be important, because you never know who that person may be. Who knows. This woman, so obnoxious and clearly in such high demand, could be a casting agent, or a publisher, or a really inexpensive housekeeper. So to play it safe, I made a pact with myself not to display my anger unless and until I find out that the object of my rage is just some regular ol' useless schlub with nothing to offer me.

Because I can just see it happening, like in a bad sitcom (take your pick): I go into an office with something to offer. I'm a little nervous. (OK, more than a little.) I'm waiting (and have been for three hours) to meet the person who is going to decide the fate of my project. The receptionist finally tells me to go on in. The camera (remember, this is a sitcom) pans up from the floor and eventually settles on the honcho's face. She is, of course, the very same LOSER I'd unleashed 10,000 gallons of my choicest rage on the day before. She recognizes me immediately. Arches her eyebrow. Doesn't extend her hand. And then the camera cuts to me ... gasping and crying and running out of the room. And tripping on something. And dying.

So I said nothing.

P.S. The surgeons at Mt. Sinai tell me they can reattach my tongue. Hooray!

fresh-baked at 03:02 PM
Thursday, 12 December 2002
Woof Me Down!


Happiness is ... a puppy whose head you can easily bite off.

fresh-baked at 07:09 PM
A Very Special Episode

This morning when I woke up, the first thing I saw was a little envelope propped up against my monitor with my name neatly handwritten across the front, accompanied by a single white tulip (my favorite flower). It took me about a minute to realize the reason why. Today is a very special day for me. Well, actually, I should say for "us". It's our anniversary.

Ordinarily I don't share too much of my personal life here. I pretty much just stick to my observations of things that go on around me instead. But the note that I received this morning was so beautiful that I thought I would risk showing a bit of my "softer" side, if just for today, in honor of the special occasion.

Here's what it said:

Good morning, my sweet.

Your beautiful smile is the first thing I see in the morning and the last thing I see at night. I hope this note brings a smile to your face.

As I know you know, today marks our one-year anniversary. I just want you to know that I've cherished our journey thus far like I never would have imagined. Every moment is precious; every day a glorious gift. We spend so much time together yet I never tire of you (even when you are in one of your "moods"!) Thank you for a year I will never forget. Here's to many, many more.

It's you and me against the world, kid. I love you.

All my love,
Your "Blog"

P.S. Nice rack.

I could just cry.

fresh-baked at 04:51 PM
Wednesday, 11 December 2002
Bounty Hunter

Now that everyone is deeply enmeshed within the web of holiday hoopla — decking their halls, jingling their bells, jangling their balls, and engaging in all other manner of decorative and celebratory mayhem — the time is right to finally get yourself that Hideously Embarrassing Item that you've been putting off buying because you just couldn't bring yourself to be seen in public with it any other time of the year.

So now's the time to boldly grab Justin Timberlake's masterpiece without fear of public censure. "Yeah, well, this is for my 14-year-old niece in Albuquerque," you'll say with a chuckle as you slide it across the counter to the cashier, who really couldn't give a fuck, flying or otherwise. And no one will have to know that you don't even have a niece, let alone one who lives in New Mexico.

"I don't want the twins to fight over it, so I'm buying two bottles of J. Lo's fabulous new fragrance!" you'll say with a wink to the girl behind the perfume counter at Wal-Mart.

"For a little boy, I'd go with the light blue dildo," the man in the back of the store will say as you hand him your purchase. "Trust me".

Or you can be like the woman who lumbered onto the subway the other day (the same day, yes, that I saw Madame Lucky Strike), about 42 years old, so plain as to elude description or attention except for the cumbersome plastic-wrapped bundle of 15 rolls of Bounty paper towel (white, no design) that she dragged into the car. One hand rested atop her prized acquisition, and the other clutched a wad of coupons torn from drug store circulars. All for Bounty. Bonuses. Deals. Buy one, get one. Buy two, get one. Buy 15, hit the jackpot. Yeah!

At any other time of the year, someone who rides the subway wouldn't really be found travelling with such a load. And when you live in the city, with space at a premium and closets a commodity, it just doesn't make sense to buy anything in bulk. But now, with Christmas breathing sour eggnog stench down our necks (or yours, really, since I don't buy into it), well, anything goes.

But something tells me that the Bounty bonanza wasn't for the woman's household. No, something tells me that each individually-wrapped roll is going to find its way under the tree, wrapped up all pretty-like with a shiny bow on top and a paper tag sharing the bow's adhesive. And then, when everyone tears the festive wrapping paper from his or her special present, there will be a merry little mutiny on the bounty.

Tip: Individual sheets make great stocking stuffers. Or nice rewards for yourself, for a shopping day well spent.

fresh-baked at 04:15 PM
Don't Worry, Be Happy? Please.

Why, when something potentially terrible may happen, do people say to the person to whom it may happen or whose life it may affect, "Don't worry"?

"I just got tests back from my doctor's office and there's something wrong with me but he doesn't know what. He told me to come back for a scan. He wasn't smiling when he told me." Oh honey, try not to worry.

"My puppy has an ailment that we can't quite identify yet, so the vet has to do more tests." Don't worry, baby. Try not to worry.

Yeah right. Don't worry. Don't worry, be happy. Don't worry, don't think about it, blah blah blahhhhhhhhhhhhh.


True, worrying won't change the outcome of anything, and it may sap your energy and distract you from more important things in your life, like the job you hate and the Christmas pollyanna and all the other pressing hoo-ha, hullaballo, flotsam, and jetsam, but fuck it. I say WORRY. It won't do any good, no, but at least you won't be pretending you're not worried.

Worrying means you care.

Don't worry. Yeah right. I'll gnaw my fingernails to bloody stumps, churn my stomach into a burning acidic mess, and punch and kick walls until my knuckles bruise and I can't walk.

But don't worry about me. I'll be fine.

P.S. No, nothing is wrong me and/or my dog, thank god/whatever. Really! So ... don't worry.

fresh-baked at 06:16 AM
Tuesday, 10 December 2002
It's All About Me

I knew I was acrimonious, but I had no idea I was an acronym!

fresh-baked at 05:55 PM
Inside Scoop

Hello, miss, but you work as a counter-girl in the store that I am pretending to patronize, so don't give me the "once-over" half a dozen times as I browse through your racks of overpriced rags. I'm in this shop only because the tools I ordinarily use for my special brand of self-masochistic torture have started to malfunction from overuse. (Plus, hot pokers in the eyes is so last year.) I'm in your store so I know what not to buy so I don't look like every other pouting celebrity wannabe who thinks that by slouching around velvety-couch lounges some of the stardust is going to settle on bony shoulders that can barely handle the load.

Now if you'll excuse me, Miss I Work At Scoop And Spend My Week's Earnings On One Hideous Peasant Blouse, the repair shop awaits.

Merry Xmas. And P.S. You are not Cameron Diaz.

fresh-baked at 10:35 AM
Monday, 9 December 2002
Train Wreck

This afternoon, on the subway uptown, I was looking around the car as I always do. I don't read on the train or listen to music, because as disagreeable or even revolting as the experience may sometimes be, I don't like to miss anything that's going on during the ride. That means I see (or hear) a lot of stuff that I really wish I didn't, but that's just the way it goes.

When things are slow on the subway and no one's doing anything noteworthy, I look at the passengers and try to find one good thing about each of them. See, I go about it this way: Everyone is guilty of being ugly and repellent until my scanning eyes can prove otherwise. None of this "innocent until proven guilty" nonsense for me. Nope.

So I was scanning the crowd, and not having much success, and trying with most of my might to find "pretty eyes" hidden underneath the greasy gray bangs of a particularly hideous woman, or "nice fingernails" on an otherwise atrociously non-descript one. Nice shoes. Cute mittens. Something. Anything. And I failed. Miserably.

So I was a failure by dint of the crowd's failure to show me one good feature that would somehow elevate at least one of them above the slouchy, shabby masses. Disheartened, I turned to my other subway game -- one where I always win.

In this game, I am always a winner because the subjects are always such losers. This game involves my finding one stomach-wrenching physical feature attached to another passenger. And I am never disappointed. Disgusted, yes, but not disappointed.

Today's winner by a landslide was a woman who got on the train somewhere above 42nd Street. She was probably about 50, slightly stocky, neither tall nor short. She wore a dark blue coat that was crusted with what I would have thought was toothpaste — if only I believed she ever made its acquaintance. Some sort of dress or skirt, whose ragged hem escaped from the bottom of the coat. "Nude" pantyhose that bagged at the thick ankles that supported feet whose bloat could barely be contained in her scuffed dark blue "skimmer" pumps. (She did get "props", as the kids say, for color coordination.)

Her face was rubbed full of orangey foundation and powder; her lips smeared with lipstick. The shoe-polish black nest of curly-wavy hair atop her head appeared more manageable than her matching eyebrows. The fingers that gripped the pole (not 12 inches from my face) were host to unkempt fingernails under whose tips resided more dirt than chipped reddish nailbox on their surfaces.

All of these details would have been enough to keep me transfixed, but then I saw the pièce de résistance, the one thing that, above all, kept my eyes riveted to her as if she were a particularly gory accident scene. And that was this: From her nose sprouted thick, spiky, dark brown hair that had enough heft to actually hang a full 1/8 of an inch from her nostrils, like tobacco in an over-stuffed hand-rolled cigarette.

I don't know whether I was more repulsed by the sight or delighted by its discovery. All I could think was, "Ladies and gentlemen ... we have a winner! Madame Lucky Strike ... by a nose!"

fresh-baked at 05:10 PM
Sunday, 8 December 2002
Putting My Best Foot Forward

I've come up with a solution that will enable me to wear the pointy-toed boots that all the Cool Girls this side of Cameron Diaz and that side of Tara Reid are wearing these days. Because as we all know, the It Girls only permit their perky piggies to pose in footwear that is undoubtedly this season. Who cares if there's, like, snow 'n' ice 'n' stuff on the sidewalks that's waiting, quite literally, to trip you up. It's vital that you step out in style no matter what. Right?

At first I thought I was going to have certain pesky parts of my feet surgically removed in order to accommodate the boots. I mean, it's not just that several toes won't fit within the extremely narrow "toe box" no matter how much I wrap them in Saran Wrap to relieve them of unnecessary bloat. The rest of the foot is a problem too.

But because I'm an incredibly resourceful troubleshooter, I've now realized that with a few simple items from the hardware store and my local handyman (he looks nothing like Schneider from "One Day At A Time", thankfully), I can simply have the offending parts of each foot loosely hinged so that they are moved out of the way, automatically and easily, when placed inside the boots. That way I can still wear my other boots (the ones that actually accommodate a human foot) — when I'm entertaining my blind friends — without having to stuff cotton or something into their newly too-large toe box (had I opted for amputation) in order to avoid potentially harmful foot-shifting.

Or I could just wear Dansk clogs. Or something sensible from Mephisto. I could. But I won't. Because as far as style goes, well, those companies just miss the point.

fresh-baked at 12:53 PM
Saturday, 7 December 2002
Taxi Learns About the Birds

Pigeons are pigs!

Next Year: The Bees

fresh-baked at 08:06 PM
Tourist Snap

Sometimes I really hate tourists, such as any time they approach Times Square and any time they don't get out of my way when I'm zipping down the street en route to a very important Pilates session. But other times I think they're just the cutest little curiosity this side of tiddlywinks and love getting involved with them.

The past two Saturdays (on my way home from the gym, of course), I've come across a set of tourists about to snap pictures of themselves standing on Broadway with the Empire State Building several blocks to the north. Each time, one of the tourists was going to be excluded from the picture by dint of having to snap the shot. So each time I've come across this scenario, I've offered to snap the picture for them so all of them could be in the picture at the same time, rather than do that "OK, now I'll take one of YOU" thing. And each time they've been overjoyed that someone would offer to do something for them and then they've eagerly handed their camera (both times digital) to me so I could capture their little moment.

I like knowing that I will probably be part of their New York Vacation Experience.

"Attached to this email is a picture of me and Monique standing in front of the Empire State Building," Philippe tells his friends in an email. (Of course he writes it in French, though.) His friends email him back and ask how he managed to get such a beautifully composed shot of the two of them, and Philippe tells of this fresh-faced beauty who defied all the myths about New Yorkers being rude and heartless.

Or at least that's what would have happened each time if, after taking the pictures, I hadn't run away with the camera, come home, and downloaded their photos onto my computer just for fun.

fresh-baked at 12:09 PM
Friday, 6 December 2002

All right. Enough already. Would everyone and anyone who affects any sort of fake accent kindly stop doing so? I mean, really. Come on.

I don't care if that trendy hipster at the coffeehouse does it. (And you know he does.) I don't care if your best friend does it, but it's funny when he does it because, like, dude, he's so good at it that everyone believes he really is from Alabama or England or wherever. I also don't care if you've just come back from a month-long vacation in Italy. You are not Principessa Ragazza di Sienna. You are Betty Plishman from New Brunswick. Get over it.

And please please please, under no circumstances should anyone ever say, "A dingo ate my baby." It didn't work for Meryl Streep, and it wasn't funny when Elaine said it on Seinfeld, so chances are that your version isn't going to be even marginally acceptable.

Fake accents are abominable. I'm sorry. That's just the way it is.

"Yeah, Jodi, but ... Madonna does it!"

Sound argument. Snappy defense. But Madonna also "vogued".

I rest my case.

fresh-baked at 05:12 PM
Thursday, 5 December 2002
Skin and Bare It

If you don't live in, or occasionally visit, New York City or any other hip 'n' fabulous metropolis, you may not be aware of everything the cool girls are doing. (And I'm dreadfully sorry, but reading InStyle is no substitute for visiting a real city.) Therefore, since you are no doubt missing out on quite a few important trends, you may want to take special note of one particularly fascinating fashion statement that has taken the chic set by storm.

Apparently, bare legs are the new black tights. Yes, that's right, girls. Gone are the days of keeping your legs relatively warm beneath those slimming, sin-hiding black tights that have long been the staple of so many urban fashionistas. Today it's all about bare legs. Yes, even in the d(r)ead of winter, it's hip and trendy to go sans pantyhose or the ubiquitous black tights and to keep your gams unencumbered of any and all hosiery and thus exposed to the elements.

Now, I'm all for vanity and the pursuit of looking fabulous at almost any cost, but even I have to say that this no-hose thing just looks idiotic in the colder months. In addition, whereas black tights could and did hide a vast array of hideous skin sins, a tights-free look does nothing for loose-fleshed gams.

So please, ladies, for the sake of my sanity (if not your own warmth and health), lose the hoseless look. Oh, and by the way, there are these marvelous things called pants that the more daring among us have started wearing. They're all the rage!

fresh-baked at 07:31 PM
Snow Day


Hover over the photos for captions.

fresh-baked at 03:21 PM
Wednesday, 4 December 2002
Less Than Zero

The following is a list of items in which I have less than zero interest, so please, everyone — from those near and dear to me to those whose names I'll forget as soon as you turn your back — stop asking me if I have done them, seen them, heard them, or any other past participle them.

  • The latest Harry Potter movie. Make that any Harry Potter movie. Same goes for the books.

  • The Sopranos. And please stop saying "Fuggeddaboutit."

  • The Osbournes. My interest is stillborn.

  • Star Wars. Original, sequel(s), or "prequel". I can get the same effect from Nyquil, without being in the company of doofi.

  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer

  • Xena

  • Any entertainment that calls itself a "period piece" and features period costumes. Extra cringes if "American" actors speak in proper, stilted English. (Think "Age of Innocence".)

  • Any movie in which cars do not appear.

  • The Vagina Monologues. On the other hand, Cuntversations, my own off-off-Broadway production, is fantastic, and I suggest you see it if you haven't already. (Contact me for details.)

  • Survivor. Also, The Real World.

  • Anything having to do with The Lord of the Rings. Book, movie, whatever. That "Elvish" language thing really I-mor na hidberon Qeyalda parno Javezhis sordanim! Right??

  • "NaNoWriMo". ThGoItDe.

fresh-baked at 09:31 PM
The Brat in the Hat

The following is a list of items in which I have less than zero interest, so please, everyone — from those near and dear to me to those whose names I'll forget as soon as you turn your back — stop asking me if I have done them, seen them, heard them, or any other past participle them.

  • The latest Harry Potter movie. Make that any Harry Potter movie. Same goes for the books.

  • The Sopranos. And please stop saying "Fuggeddaboutit."

  • The Osbournes. My interest is stillborn.

  • Star Wars. Original, sequel(s), or "prequel". I can get the same effect from Nyquil, without being in the company of doofi.

  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer

  • Xena

  • Any entertainment that calls itself a "period piece" and features period costumes. Extra cringes if "American" actors speak in proper, stilted English. (Think "Age of Innocence".)

  • Any movie in which cars do not appear.

  • The Vagina Monologues. On the other hand, Cuntversations, my own off-off-Broadway production, is fantastic, and I suggest you see it if you haven't already. (Contact me for details.)

  • Survivor. Also, The Real World.

  • Anything having to do with The Lord of the Rings. Book, movie, whatever. That "Elvish" language thing really I-mor na hidberon Qeyalda parno Javezhis sordanim! Right??

  • "NaNoWriMo". ThGoItDe.

fresh-baked at 07:48 AM
The Brat in the Hat

I have a fabulous hat. It's like nothing else I own, in that it's purple and wacky, and, well ... a hat. I'm not a hat person. I'm not a person who sees hats in a store and rushes over to the rack "like a kid in a candy store" (a phrase I detest) and just has to try them on. I don't do it, and not just because I kinda have this thing about not really digging lice. I just don't do it. If I did, of course, I'd have to try on a lot of hats, and have someone film it, so I could then put together a really adorable montage set to music and then come up with a full-length screenplay in which to embed the scene.

So, anyway, I have this hat. And I just can't seem to wear it yet without feeling like everyone is pointing and staring. Not because of the hat itself, because believe me, as far as New York City is concerned, it's not the craziest or most outrageous thing (hat or otherwise) around town. No, I'm self-conscious because my experience with it is new. Although I bought it last year, I only wore it a handful (or headful) of times, because last winter wasn't cold enough, and I was secretly "relieved", because I wasn't bold enough. It felt alien, like all of a sudden I sprouted a third head.

I'm always like this when I buy something that I'm not used to wearing. When the DOG bought me a gorgeous watch a few years ago, I couldn't wear it without feeling like I had a blinking neon sign above my head with a huge arrow pointing down to my wrist. (For some reason the sign said "Girls! Girls! Girls!" No, I don't know why.) Like I was the first person in the history of the watch-wearing world to ever sport a new watch. Quelle cretin.

So anyway, I'm determined this winter (which is supposed to actually be wintry) to make the experience of wearing this new hat ... old hat.

And I'll do it. Just watch!

fresh-baked at 07:48 AM
Tuesday, 3 December 2002
Baby Talk

If there's one thing I can't stand (and really, there's only one; I'm just kidding about everything else that I say I can't stand), it's when people talk to children as if they are idiots. For purposes of the example below, I will use the word "Grown-Up" to describe the non-child, because it seems to be the word of choice among those who treat children as if they were miniature dimwits. How many times have I heard an exchange like the following that makes me see all shades of red, especially the one that corresponds with the freshly spilled blood of the baby-talker du jour.

Grown-Up: Hi-i-i-eeeee, Tommy! Does Tommy want wawa? Does Tommy want Mommy to give Tommy wawa?

Toddler: Preferisco il latte, Madre. Mille grazie.

Grown-Up: Here's Tommy's baba. Oooh, would Tommy like a sammie? Wawababagoo Mommy yumyum baba goo! Tommy's a big boy!

Toddler: Non me parlare come ciņ.

Grown-Up: Num-nums!

First of all, I don't get the lack of pronouns. Why must Mommy address herself as "Mommy"? Why can't Mommy refer to herself as "me" or "I"? Why must Mommy be such a dumbdumbhead?

Second, what's up with the "googoo" truncated versions of easy-to-pronounce words? Just because Tommy's mouth doesn't quite form the words properly doesn't mean that Mommymoomoo has to act as if she too is ready for the playpen. She can say "water" and "bottle". She can definitely say "sandwich". (And I wholeheartedly discourage anyone from ever saying "sammie", unless of course, he's discussing a particular cherished member of the Rat Pack.) And she can say "little", too, instead of "widdle". Weally.

Fird Third, why oh why must Mommy say everything in a singsong choochoo ramalamadingdong tone of voice, as if everything she says rhymes? Is Mommy a big purple dinosaur? Is Mommy a neon alien with a television stuck in her tum-tum? No. So knock it off.

That's all.

Night night!

fresh-baked at 10:16 PM
Island Life

Guess what? It's COLD outside! Yes! Who would have guessed? It's only December, less than three weeks away from the first day of winter, in a Mid-Atlantic state several thousand miles above the equator! I must blushingly admit that I was more than just a little shocked this afternoon when I ventured outside in my splashy "board shorts", citrus-colored tank top, and kicky flip-flops and was greeted with a blast of ice-cold air like none ever felt 'round these parts!

And apparently this cold snap is quite a rare phenomenon here in Manhattan, because everyone's looking around like they don't know what to do, exclaiming to one another, "Oh my god, it's so cold!"

What kind of an island is this, anyway?

I'll bet the good folks sunnin' themselves on the sandy shores of Rhode Island are having a big ol' belly laugh at my expense.


fresh-baked at 05:00 PM
Happy Birthday, Tess!

Cranky Chick
I can't possibly say enough good things about my friend Tess. She's fabulous — despite her love of Olive Garden.

Go wish her a Happy Birthday. Tell her I sent you.

fresh-baked at 08:30 AM
Monday, 2 December 2002
Dog Daze


We've taken Taxi out of "school" for a while, because, really, he's so beyond finger-painting and construction paper artwork at this point. He'll learn so much more with home-schooling, and I'll benefit too by reprising my Miss Lawrence role. So, everybody wins! Except the "school", of course, which will lose a huge chunk o' money. Oh well.

So today I tried to play a little game of "catch" with him in the living room. Here's what happened:

Me: Come on, Taxi! Let's play!
He gets up from the corner by the front door and walks over to me.
Taxi: ...
Me: Let's play ball! Come on!
Taxi: ...
I toss the ball in the general area of his head, which it bounces off of before thudding to the floor. Taxi doesn't move. Or flinch. I retrieve the ball.
Me: Come on, baby! Catch! Good boy!
Taxi: ...
I toss the ball more toward his mouth. It bounces off his nose.
Taxi: ...
Me: Good boy!
I toss the ball a few more times. He does not flinch. He walks back to his corner and plops down.
Me: Good boy!
I walk down the hallway toward my "office".
Taxi: Asshole.
Shana: Really.

fresh-baked at 05:56 PM
Sunday, 1 December 2002
No Comment

fresh-baked at 11:41 PM
Open Mic

Is this thing on?

fresh-baked at 07:52 PM
No No No!

Truly revolting!

If you are old enough to know that Santa does not exist (hate to break it to you, Virginia) (and also you, Rhode Island!), then you are too old to wear a Santa hat, especially with your name emblazoned in glitter.

I don't care if you work in a pediatric doctor's office, teach kindergarten, do the payroll for a law firm, or manage a retail store.

I don't care if you're going to a holiday party. I don't care if you're caroling. I don't care if you're just romping around nude in your home, a-wassailin' with your "hubby".

I still say NO.

fresh-baked at 05:19 PM
Hot Stuff

In addition to being a best-selling author, I am also a world-class artist. Shocked? Don't be.

Below, for instance, is one of my latest works, which will be on display in a small gallery in Chelsea this week. (Check New York magazine for listings.) You can't deny the raw sexiness of Satan, especially when he's wearing a form-fitting black turtleneck and ass-caressing jeans. He is, quite appropriately, too hot to handle.

As am I.


(And, yes, click to enlarge. Or enrage. Or something.)

fresh-baked at 10:50 AM