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Wednesday, March 22, 2006

It' S NOT pretty


Please forgive my absence. I am unable to write due to the fact that every single cell, blood vessel, and fibre of my being is fiercely dedicated to the full-time production of snot.

I am suffering from--and this is not a medical term, but it is accurate--an infected head. My sinuses, ears, throat, and eyes are all a mess and producing the slimy fluid.

It's not pretty. I am a disaster.

Help.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

In the Bathroom


I find myself thinking about bathroom habits lately, mainly because I have to yell at my 18-year old on a daily basis to get in there and put the cap back on the toothpaste and hang the towel back up. Each time he goes back in there and does those things, I assess the general area and marvel again at how much I hate cleaning the bathroom and also at how much hair there is in the sink. Blondes must have it easier in that regard: you probably never really notice it in there.

Anyway, I sometimes think about married couples sharing a bathroom who don't mind it when one spouse is in the bathroom, say, brushing his teeth while the other is actually using the toilet. That has never once happened in the going-on-25-years of marriage in the Dept., let me assure you. I find that to be an absolutely non-negotiable item. That is just way too much ugly intimacy for me. That is a surefire way to "take the bloom off the rose" in any relationship, if you ask me. You might as well just throw up all over him. (Or her. As the case may be.) No one needs to see that. I even offer an objection when Travis and Emily (the cats) wander in while I am occupied in that manner. I tried to think back if my husband and I ever even talked about this issue and formally set this boundary early in our relationship. I couldn't remember if we really discussed it, or if it just became a common understanding between us, like so many issues in a marriage do, such as who takes out the garbage and who is in charge of getting stamps and the fact that there will never be dogs involved in any way and things like that. But regardless of how the treaty was reached, it has never been broken. And it never will be.

The toilet paper will also always flop over the roll and not under it. I will never have any reading material in the bathroom that is expressly for the bathroom. (Currently, there is a collection of Flannery O'Connor's short stories.) Even when I am home alone, I shut the door firmly when I am in the bathroom. I never sing in the shower, but I heartily enjoy it when the rest of my family belt out tunes in their showers.

I wonder if people's bathroom habits are indicative of their personalities in general. That particular bathroom time is about the only thing my husband and I don't share, so overgeneralizing here would be dangerous. And I don't think I want to invite everyone to tell me their water closet proclivities. Unless of course, they really feel they need to.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

My Generalized Malaise Has a Definite Source

I'm having a hard time. I'd like to be able to blame it on the weather. (And I could, too. After all, I live in northeast Ohio; here, winter drags on and on from late October into mid- to late April. That's a half-year of winter for those of you scoring at home.) I could even try blaming it on a late Easter and hence, a tardy spring break. So long before I get a break from school and teaching my sophomores and juniors! But I can't do that this time. No, this generalized malaise is due to one thing and one thing only.

I am suffering from Project Runway withdrawal.

Those of you who followed Bravo's reality show know exactly what I mean. What are we to do now every Wednesday night? More importantly, what will we talk about now on Thursdays with our colleagues? (And don't even try offering up "Top Chef" as a consolation! Pfffft. I caught parts of "Top Chef." It's no "Hell's Kitchen", let me tell you.)

To make matters worse for me during my withdrawal, I was a Daniel V. fan. I know! He should have won! He won more individual challenges; he was adorable; his clothes were more polished; he had great cheekbones; his work was always finished beautifully; he was cute; he was so much more professional; he looked beautiful even when he had his hair up like Samurai Designer...!! Daniel V. was the odds-on favorite, the golden boy, and even he looked stunned when he didn't win.

The winner was a designer who already has her own shop in Houston, Texas where, judging by her fashion collection, the women prefer clothes made of stiff satin cut in the style of 1980s prom queens where the theme of the night is "Return to the Set of the Television Show Dallas" meets Upholstered Sluts. Since I am an avowed Daniel V. fan, I will not even mention her name. She is dead to me. (Insert gesture of me forking her with the evil eye.) This designer has won $100K seed money-- and her big plans? To stay in Houston and expand her already successful boutique. Oh boy. Dare to dream.

Not that I am bitter.

Sigh. I hate getting emotionally invested in things and then being disappointed. It's bad enough being a teacher--that comes with the territory. But living in the Cleveland area, our sports teams make this a tradition: the Browns, the Indians, the Cavaliers. We keep getting set up for disappointment. And no, you never get used to it. Now, sweet little Daniel V. on Project Runway, who looked like a winner, gets robbed. Victory snatched from the jaws of...what? what would be analagous in fashion? Pinking shears? A presser foot? Whatever. Just look at this face and tell me that it alone wasn't enough:



This is the face of a young man who is thoughtful about his fashion! He will not stop until we women look beautiful all of the time! And he lost, America. HE LOST. And I am sad. We all should be.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

The List

We've been together over 6 months now, so I feel like I can share this with you. You know plenty about me already. I've shared lots of other things with you, so why not this? Who knows? You may even have one of your own and admit to it in the Comments. Perhaps you'll even share yours with all of us.

It's my List of Women I'd Do if I Were Gay.

The original idea of The List was born over 10 years ago during a getaway weekend vacation. There were about 5 of us at a Virginia ski resort condo; it was a mini-reunion and we had all come from our faraway homes, not having seen each other in years. Conversation started on our favorite topic of the time, Daniel Day-Lewis. Then it moved on to other men in film and which ones we'd consider sleeping with. Then...well...naturally, several bottles of wine were consumed along the way, and the conversation evolved from there. That particular List was a group effort: it was a complicated snarl of veto powers and 4/5 majority votes and such, but it was an incredible catalog of lovely women who were as fiercely defended as if we had been wearing chain mail and a coat of arms, let me tell you. I don't recall who retained custody of that particular List (perhaps Emily of Houston, Texas), but I wish I had a copy because I don't remember who was on it except that I think I started lobbying for Michelle Pfeiffer and lost because "she has that weird upper lip thing going on at the corners."

**This might be the exact critical moment to affirm, once and for all, the unflinchingly heterosexual status of not only me, but all of the women on that vacation. Really.**

Anyway, the idea of The List has been a great boon to listless afternoons in the lounge and boring parties. I urge you to develop yours immediately. Don't feel you need to confine it to film or television persons alone--branch out to other avenues as well. Develop an eclectic List including dead celebrities (with the stipulation, of course, that they be alive for the deed!), and don't overlook the arenas of sports and music. Look at your List as a fluid document and ring changes upon it capriciously! And publicly, if possible! For example, if you really thought Jessica Alba looked hot at the Oscars on Sunday night, say aloud to someone at the office copier tomorrow, "Boy! That Jessica Alba! That gold dress she wore to the Oscars vaulted her right to the top of my List!" And guys, you should feel absolutely no compunction about formulating your own Lists. That is the hallmark of self-actualization and shows that you are secure in your own manhood. It will be liberating for you to say at the next production meeting, "I just cannot get behind Keith Urban's stripey new highlights. I bet Nicole Kidman is mortified. He has just plummeted on my List."

Having said all of that, it's time to share with you:

Nance's List of Women I'd Do If I Were Gay
1. Charlize Theron
2. Sophie Marceau
3. Scarlett Johansson
4. Vivien Leigh
5. Mariska Hargitay

That's my top 5 as of right now. Old Vivien has been on there forever, and Charlize has been in the top spot for a long time now. I haven't kicked around my List in a long time. Usually, my buddy Sue and I bring up The List when we get bored in the teachers' lounge and I try to get her to move Catherine Zeta-Jones out of her top spot (how cliche! that chick is on everyone's List!) . Sometimes, Roger comes in and we badger him about his List. Technically, he doesn't have one, other than the one I maintain for him. Once, I pissed him off by putting Beck on his List. He doesn't fight me about George Clooney at all, though.

Once you start your own List, share it with me in the comments. If you're not feeling self-actualized, you can be anonymous. It's okay. And I'll keep you posted on any changes in mine.

Monday, March 06, 2006

WARNING: Politics Ahead

I watched "Face the Nation" on Sunday, mainly because I just couldn't face "Meet the Press". (Also because my family have threatened to medicate me if I continue to watch "Meet the Press" and talk back to the guests constantly. You know, it's as if they can't hear me, those guests, and I make all kinds of extraordinarily cogent and breathtakingly incisive points, scoring heavily against each idiotic Republican until...never mind. Sigh. Anyway.) This week, former VP candidate John Edwards was on with Jack Kemp, also a former. They were supposed to be talking about how President Putin of Russia was turning into a bad guy, and what the U.S. should do about it, like subtract him from the G8.

As I was watching it, I was listening carefully to John Edwards. I had a few suspicions, and as John Edwards spoke, he confirmed them. He made a lot of statements using words like "moral leadership". He started talking a whole bunch about port security and how we still aren't inspecting even 10% of incoming shipping containers at our international ports regardless of who maintains eventual ownership. He started in on how Hurricane Katrina highlighted the problems of poverty in our country and hauled out his "haves and have nots" talking points. I recognized an awful lot of recycled phrases from his stumping speeches during the Kerry campaign. I saw him pull out the old Clinton "fist with the thumb up" gesture. Hey, I thought, this is a candidate talking.

I realized that John Edwards is basically what the result would be if Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter had a child.

Not too long after that, ol' Bob Schieffer picked up on the rhetoric and asked Edwards if he was a candidate for the nomination in '08. Edwards grinned and said he was considering it.

And I'm bored by that. I realize that the Democrats are going to have to go moderate to get back in the Big Chair in '08, and I hope they realize it, too. It saddens me that we have no Rock Star out there to wow us, even as a moderate. We have no power, no punch, no one to look to for charisma. We don't even have anyone in the wings in Washington already who is a mover and a shaker who is inspiring us now! Who is already there, a Democrat, who is snarking at the president and pushing things around? Who is nudging and shoving and saying, "What about our mission? What about smoking Osama out of his hole? What about this? What about that?"

And if this sounds real familiar, it's because it's the same thing I was bitching about back in August. How sad.

I just want to get over it all. Is there a support group, or do I need to take matters into my own hands and start drinking heavily? Is my next entry going to be titled Why Do the Democrats Insist upon Ruining My Life? I'm already off Newsweek; am I really going to have to give up "Face the Nation" and "Meet the Press"? I haven't had a political blog entry since my Governor Taft one. And he's on the state level!

Guns don't kill people; politics kills people.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Carnival of the Mundane V

Be sure to check out Citizen of the Month for Carnival of the Mundane V. Blogger Neil Kramer is the event's host this go-round, which is a showcase of blogposts that celebrate the Everyday. I was tickled to be included among the offerings in this extravaganza.

It's an absolute clickfest of a blog buffet over there: you can read and read and read and be sure to add to your favorites list. And if you're very tricky, you can stash away a few good blogpost ideas for yourself for later....

But y'all come back now, ya hear?
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