Friday, May 28, 2010

Where'd You Get Them Jeans?

This is a little off the typical girlfriending beaten path, but looking good for your SO is a big part of the deal, so I'll veer.

I need new jeans. The problem is that I've been wearing little girls' jeans for most of my adult life. More specifically, jeans from the popular tween money sink, Delia's. But those days are coming to an end, I fear, thanks to my advancing age (are 27 year-olds even allowed to wear clothes from Delia's? No? I didn't think so) and, lately, my expanding rear end. I've always been curvy but for some reason (sigh...probably that advancing age, again) just this year my hips have decided that things aren't working out between them, and they need some time far, far apart.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

I really have to apologize in advance for the corny concept of this post, but I have this recycling triangle on my desk at work and I stare at it all day long, so it's kind of wormed itself into my unconscious mind. I guess it was only a matter of time before I was just struck by how the concept can apply to girlfriending, too.

Reduce stress and conflict. Your partner is the person closest to you and, incidentally, the person who will bear the brunt of your stress in life. It’s easy to take your frustrations out on them just because they’re there, but that can lead to a lot of unnecessary strain on your relationship. Don’t use your SO as a dumping ground. Sure, they understand you and can be a good sounding board but don’t be relentless when venting your spleen.

Reuse compliments and affirmations. No one gets sick of hearing that they’re beautiful and clever and successful, so keep on saying it, even if you have to dig down deep to find it. A few minutes spent admiring each other can make both of your days. It’s almost as nice to give a compliment as it is to get one.

Recycle yourselves. We’re all constantly changing and evolving as people. Make sure your relationship is evolving along with you. What worked a year ago may not work today and there’s nothing wrong with that, but you have to be conscious of it. Become a better version of your relationship, like an Us 2.0.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Fighting the Good Fight

Okay, I'll admit it. I'm half Italian. Not only Italian, Sicilian. Just, you know, in general I mean business. Business. Do not dance with me.

Kidding, kidding. (No really, I'm not kidding. I've had uncles advise me that it would only take one phone call, should I be messed with. Do not dance with me.)

Anyway, it's funny because I've learned that people from different areas of the world totally fight differently. My boyfriend is half Scottish and his idea of a fight is to act indignant for a good reason, then for no reason, then get emotional and make up over a double shot of whiskey. I, on the other hand, tend to start yelling and keep yelling until one or both of us is beat into submission. It's usually me. While one half of me is Italian and one half of him is Scottish, one half of both of us is Irish, which throws a whole other passive-aggressive monkey wrench into the equation. The Irish are not historically skilled at expressing themselves in appropriate ways and they also rely on dark liquors to get through life.

Fighting may be relationship poison, or it may be what keeps a relationship evolving. Either way, you have to be in tune with your inner fight. Let's talk fighting cliches that may or may not be true.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Coffee Compatibility

While stumbling last night I came across an article entitled, "What Your Taste in Coffee Says About You." Now, if I had written this piece it would have been two sentences long:

"Your taste in coffee signifies your need to drag your ass to work after a long night of drinking. By the way, where is that coffee?"

In all seriousness, though, the article was interesting even though it's not entirely scientific to analyze how coffee choices reflect different personality traits. According to the author, as someone who allows her coffee to cool I am the type of person who, "refuses to be driven or pressurised [sic] knows what they like, and is prepared to wait for it. They may be "fussy" in their tastes, but they don't make demands on others." That's complete BS. I make lots of demands on others.

The article closes with a paragraph that both dates the material, and terrifies this reader. It asserts, "
Finally, it is revealed the millennium will see the current coffee sensation heightening. Donna predicts: "As we approach the millennium we will be reaching out more to other people and engage in more conversation. There will also be more thought and emotion - sharing and coffee will help us do this."

This guy obviously never saw Twitter coming.

It got me thinking, though, whether there is anything to be said for, "coffee compatibility." Since we're talking junk science, anyway, we may as well have a little fun. Can a black drinker ever be happy with someone who likes hers light and sweet? Can a hazelnut ever love a French vanilla? All I know is that I take mine with 1/2 a Splenda and soy milk while my boyfriend prefers tea and we've never had any philosophical debates on the topic.

I wonder what the new millennium will bring.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

I Can't Go For That

No can do. (Good luck getting that out of your head my friends.)

After a year and a half of cohabitation, I can say that there are only a handful of, "boundaries," that remain. I will certainly sneak in for a quick pee while my boyfriend is in the shower, and will lounge around in various states of undress. No biggie. But I can definitely rattle off a few things that I'd be loathe to do in front of him, and they include:

  1. The opposite of peeing. And I don't mean drinking.
  2. Exercising. For some reason, I can't work out while he's in the room. I've been able to do so with former roommates and other boyfriends, but not with him. Especially not yoga. It could be the fact that I know he'll say something like, "You're going to get stuck like that," or, "Do they call that pose the flailing goddess? If so, you're doing it right." Under normal circumstances, I'd find those comments both hilarious and timely. Not so much when I'm channeling a pretzel, and trying to be at peace.
  3. Vocal warm-ups. I'm a singer, by trade. Well, not really by trade, but I did go to school for it, which makes me think it should be my trade. Anyway, warming up your voice is probably the least attractive preview of your abilities you could possibly come up with. Arpeggios, trills, whooping, lip buzzing, mouth stretching, these are things that should be reserved for the bedroom.
  4. Picking out an outfit. When I'm figuring out what to wear it's like I'm in some sort of zone where my peripheral vision shuts down. I can't talk or think about anything other than finding that one shirt. Yesterday my boyfriend joined me in the bedroom while I rifled through clothes in an attempt to change so we could go get dirty martinis. He barely even spoke, but it still put me on the verge of a nervous breakdown. My inner voice was screaming, "I just need to concentrate!!!!"
  5. "Personal" grooming. I don't think I need to explain this one.
(I suppose that picture of Hall & Oates doesn't really have much bearing on this post, other than it being the inspiration for the title. I just love this picture. They look like beautiful, flamboyant angels. And I'd totally wear those pants.)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Music to Girlfriend By

I've been on a big 60s (and 60s-inspired) music kick lately, stuff like Tommy James & the Shondells, The Ronettes, God Help the Girl, and of course, Miss Dusty Springfield. Is there anyone cooler than Dusty? No. And no one ever will be. (I'm looking at you, "Duffy.")

Dusty's one of those artists who make you say, once you start delving into her catalog, "Oh my god, that was her," about a dozen times. She had fabulous hair, was openly bisexual (in 1970!!!) and pretty much defined the, "mod," sound. She's like a musical Union jack mini-skirt.

So mix up a Manhattan, throw on some Dusty in Memphis, and twist it out with your man (or your lady. Or one of each!)

Miss Sisyphus

I froze when I (thought I) saw her. I was walking into the wine store, like any other day ending in "y" and, standing at the counter was a woman I thought I knew. Long story short, it wasn't her, and I realized that within about two seconds, but the variety of emotions and memories that slammed me in the space of those two seconds was incredible. So, how about the long version.