What’s behind all the vitriol regarding Paula Deen’s admission that she has Type 2 diabetes? Let’s dissect. Grab your scalpel.
Camp One: Members of this camp have always held Paula in disdain because she’s not on the whole food/raw food/organic food/dairy-free/grass fed beef/free range chicken/gluten-free/salt-free/vegetarian/vegan/sugar-free team, and for that, she must be publicly flogged, because everyone knows only stupid, ill-educated, irresponsible people eat whatever the hell they want to without making excuses or apologizing for it, and my, doesn’t schadenfreude taste DELICIOUS??? Paula, you poor Southern ruffian, just be more like us, and you’ll escape our withering stares and exasperated exhalations that smell of quinoa and raw beets and homemade organic salt-free flatbread repurposed from old hemp sandals.
Camp Two: Members of this camp, chubby and super sugar-fortified, ignored their doctors’ warnings about moderation in all things, like, say, how about dropping that doughnut and Dr. Pepper and opting for a bowl of oatmeal and a cup of hot tea every once in awhile?, and instead decided that if Paula Deen could eat tubs of sugar and sticks of butter and quarts of cream and fluffy pies and frosted cakes and flaky biscuits and viscous gravy, then by God, so could they, because she’s, like, a CELEBRITY, and see? It hasn’t hurt her one little bit. Not one bit! But now? Paula, you LIAR! You LIED to us! I mean, you never actually told us that we could eat with abandon and suffer no consequences, and you never actually told us to eat like this 3 times a day, every day of our lives, but THAT’S NOT THE POINT. Now I have to pay attention to what I put in my piehole (like less pie), and I can’t use your good health as an excuse to ladle cream gravy on everything and squirt canned whipped cream directly into my mouth. What the hell, Paula? Just WHAT. THE. HELL.
(Whew. I feel MUCHO better now. Someone pass me a celebratory vat of queso and some unsalted kale chips.)
Posted by Kelly on Oct 27, 2011 in deep thought thursdays
My thoughts about Halloween usually aren’t very deep. (Candy. Candy. Candy.) I’m not someone who puts any stock in the idea that malevolent spirits spontaneously (and totally without your permission) invade your body if you dress up as a frightening critter, or watch a scary movie, or use a Ouija board, or anything else that gets some people all worked up about accidentally doing Satan’s bidding. Frankly, I think we manage to screw things up just fine on our own without outside assistance. In a nutshell? I ain’t afraid of no ghosts.
So, that got me thinking: what am I really afraid of? What makes the hair on the back of my neck stand on end? What sends that icy trickle of sweat down the middle of my back? What punts me right into panic attack territory?
Here’s my list of Things I Sincerely Am Afraid Of (Even If They’re Stupid):
1. Flying: Terrified. I do it anyway because I can’t drive to Playa del Carmen (something I consider even more terrifying than flying – no Mexican drug lord is gonna put MY head on a stake, dammit), but it mentally wrecks me. Consuming large quantities of alcohol before I board helps a little, but I can’t drink TOO much, because then I’d have to pee several times during the flight, and if the plane goes down, I do not want to be trapped alone in the bathroom. (See? I’ve really thought this out.) My husband doubts my physical strength until I once again crush his hand into pea gravel upon every take-off and landing.
2. Flying cockroaches: The big ones. You know the kind I’m talking about. They’re the size of jalapenos, and I would rip off my own head if one landed in my hair.
3. Dentists: No, I didn’t see “Marathon Man” one too many times. I was the subject of a lot of dental and orthodontic work as a kid, including facial reconstructive surgery, and I don’t care if I never see the inside of a dental office ever again. Unfortunately, I was forced to see one last year because of a small infection in my gum, and even before I walked into the torture chamber, er, I mean dental office, I felt weak, sweaty, and incapable of appropriate verbal communication (whimpering is untranslatable, as it turns out). I won’t ignore an emergency, but my teeth currently are white, shiny, cavity-free (they checked me out when they addressed the gum issue – I withheld my desire to throw myself out of the chair) and generally in excellent health, so unless I begin to look like Austin Powers, I’m steering clear.
4. Powerful ocean waves: I grew up on the Gulf Coast, spent many a summer body surfing and boogie-boarding in the Galveston waves, and then I tried to body surf a wave in Tulum, Mexico. It didn’t go well. My husband still laughs about it. I’m sure that I still have grains of sand imbedded in my face.
5. Fire: I don’t run screaming from gas stoves, campfires, or Bic lighters, so don’t get me wrong. I mean BIG fires. I saw 2 houses burn during my stint in Denton, and those images are still with me. Watching and hearing about the wildfires in Texas this summer made my skin crawl. Please, oh please, don’t let me die in a fire. (Damn. Did I unplug my flat iron this morning?)
Now it’s your turn. What gives you the shivers? Haunts your dreams? Traps the scream in your throat? We want to hear about your boogeymen! Muahahahahaha!
Posted by Kelly on Oct 13, 2011 in deep thought thursdays
Laura is thinking deep thoughts. I am thinking these thoughts:
“When I place the cot in my office this weekend, how should I position it to maximize excellent feng shui?”
“Is a cot and cot bedding a violation of the fire code?”
“Will I be able to shove my fat head under the sink faucet in the community bathroom, or must I invest in a container of dry shampoo?”
“How long until these people notice I’ve worn the same outfit 5 days in a row? Will the wrinkles, the stains, or the odor give me away?”
“Could I make a living selling puka shell necklaces on the beach in Galveston?”
Yeah, someone’s getting booted around here, and it ain’t Laura. Carry on, partner. Carry on.
Posted by Laura on Oct 13, 2011 in deep thought thursdays
So, my partner-in-crime-and-blog, Kelly, dubbed Thursdays as “Deep Thought Thursdays.” Last time, she threw out a humdinger of a deliberation on “balance.” (have you read it? No? Go read her words NOW.)
I’ve been awake since about 3 a.m. and these are the, ahem, deep thoughts that filled my mind:
What should I make for dinner tonight? Am I going to get the fill-in-the-blank in time to finish that project my client needs by Saturday? Did the Rangers win last night? Wonder if I could sell the Letter Project on Etsy? Why haven’t I heard back from XYZ client? Extended Columbus Day holiday? Is it too early to switch the summer bedding to the fall/winter bedding? How long is it going to take for Cain to cannibalize his campaign, á la Perry? I wish I could get a camera lens that’s good for close-ups AND long shots. Switching them out is a pain. Should I start using coupons? Where can I put the antique typewriter so Andy can’t “work” on it? I need more details for that media pitch that needs to go out next week. Should I delete some of my movies and documentaries from the DVR so we have more room for new Diegos and Doras? Should I start recording “Super Why”? Would today be a good day to go to the Arboretum? Why do the “Occupy Dallas” people need to camp-out? Can’t they just stay at someone’s house? I should call Cassie for a play date with Jacob. Where did I put the 2007 Communication Arts Design Annual? That has some great stuff in it. Can’t believe I didn’t know, about the Blackberry outage yesterday. Yes I can, my Frankenstein of a phone is generally on the fritz and the SNAFU seemed like status quo. I need a new phone. What t-shirt can Andy when we paint the jars? I hope Dad wants to eat catfish on Saturday. Could I fit my sewing machine into the guest room? The bedroom? How much will it cost to get set-up on notions and all that jazz? I really want to make an apron. And, some drapes. And, a skirt. And, a few holiday pillows. Can I find a Diego Animal Rescuer patch online? Did I set-up the coffee maker before I went to bed?
Other things weighing on my mind? Two of my besties. One is having surgery today and another is ready to have a baby, at what seems, any moment.
And last, but not least, why do some people say supper and others say dinner?
Wikipedia starts out with these little gems: “Supper … Not to be confused with Supper-time (disambiguation) or Dinner.” Likewise, “Dinner … Not to be confused with Supper.”
For the love of Pete, Wikipedia. You’re no help. I know smart people from all over the country that refer to their evening meal as supper. Same with dinner.
I say “dinner.” Why? Because my mom called it “dinner.” Simple as that.
What do YOU say, Easy Company, and WHY, do you think?
(Pretty sure Kelly is shaking her head at me and considering ex-communicating me from Swiss Army Wives. Hi, Kelly! Waving at you LIKE THIS!!! xoxo LOVE YOU!)
Posted by Kelly on Sep 29, 2011 in deep thought thursdays
It’s 8:00 a.m. I’ve been up for 3 hours. It’s a Saturday.
I’m weaving through the house like a running back on a mission to the end zone: making 4 breakfasts (all want different cereals, some want a side of fruit, and crap, we’re out of Nutella), brewing a second pot of coffee, locating softball pants (still in the dryer – doh!), soccer jerseys, matching socks, pulling said laundry out of dryer, finding a spot not already occupied by detritus to dump laundry, laying out laundry so that I’m not forced to run that load of clothes through the cycle yet again (because I forgot about them twice already), tossing what I hope is mostly whites into the washer (a pox on you, beastly red hand towel), applying mascara to my left eye, reminding all the rabble to please brush all their teeth, taking the trash to the garage (2nd bag in 12 hours), running a flat iron through my hair (works better if you turn it on, Kelly), logging on to work to check my database so that I can answer outside counsel’s 11:30 p.m.-on-a-Friday-night email (get a life, buddy), scooping up dirty jammies and towels, locating missing contacts, shoes, fav earrings, excavating the freezer to find the pork loin that I know I bought 2 weeks ago so that we can have dinner that isn’t delivered to us by a moody teenager in a 1979 Toyota Corolla, realizing the only veggie I have is a 6-ounce can of low-sodium peas, and suddenly, the idea of “balance” occurs to me.
Balance. Hm. Balance.
Finding balance between your work life and your home life. Achieving balance between work and play. Striving for the perfect balance of rest, exercise, up time, down time. Working toward the goal of balance of time spent with the kids, time spent with you spouse, and time spent alone. Balancing your needs with the needs of your employer. Balancing your needs with the needs of your family. Balance. BALANCE.
Maybe I should quit my job. No, that won’t work. We have to buy food and pay the mortgage. Maybe I should walk out of the office at 2:00 p.m. each day, and tell my supervisor that I’m perfecting work/home balance. No. That won’t work either. He’ll hand me a cardboard box, and then we’re back to the whole buy-food-pay-mortgage thing. How about giving up laundry? If I keep my job, then we can just buy new clothes. Nah. I hate shopping. Hm. I’ve already given up cleaning the house, so that’s off the table. Oh, I’ve got it! We could sell one of the kids! I’d have to run it by the hubby first, of course.
“Husband! What say you? Sav strong like bull, Cam possess much wisdom, Tristan run like wind, Mad small but mighty. Choose wisely, Husband. The tribe members who remain in the village will care for us when we are long in the tooth. Don’t eff this up.”
Oh, never mind. The economy sucks. No one has extra cash for a kid, and frankly, the whole idea reeks of hurt feelings. Kids are so sensitive.
If balance was a person instead of an idea, and she was standing in front of me right now, I’d wait until she looked down and shook her perfectly coiffed head at me in disgust, and then I’d sucker punch the shit out of her.
Is it possible that I am the only one who is sick to death of hearing about this so-called achievable balance that I’ve observed only in women (and men) who do not work outside the home, but do have nannies, housekeepers, laundresses, personal assistants, babysitters, gardeners, private tutors, personal trainers, and vacation homes? Am I the only one who thinks this is a crock of doo-doo, and that time spent in its pursuit results in nothing but feeling like a big, fat domestic and professional loser?
No, I’m not. I stumbled upon this, and the heavens opened, and short, chubby angels sang sweet songs in Latin, and a feeling of validation rippled through me with the power and speed of a virulent stomach bug. From Marcus Buckingham’s article, “What The Happiest and Most Successful Women Do Differently”:
When someone tells you to try to have greater balance in your life, your immediate and appropriate reaction is a spasm of disbelief. “Balance?” you ask yourself. “How does that work? For every extra hour at work find another hour at home? For every extra kid at home, reduce my workload by exactly the amount my new child requires? For every school play I should attend, cut out a presentation on the road? For everything I say yes to, say no to something else? Is that it?”
Not according to the people we interviewed. They didn’t talk about balance much at all. They seemed to realize that not only was a perfect equilibrium nigh on impossible to achieve, but also that even if they did manage to achieve it, it wouldn’t necessarily fulfill them anyway–when you are balanced, you are stationary, holding your breath, trying not to let any sudden twitch or jerk pull you too far one way or the other. You are at a standstill. Balance is the wrong life goal.
Instead, do as these women did, and strive for imbalance. Pinpoint the strong-moments in each aspect of your life and then gradually target or tilt your life toward them. This means being as deliberate as you can about making them happen. It means investigating them when they do happen, looking at them from new perspectives, and celebrating them. Above all, it means giving them the power of your attention. Read more…
Let’s read that part up there again. “Balance is the wrong goal in life.” Okay, one more time. “Balance is the wrong goal in life.” Doesn’t that sound bee-you-tee-ful? Doesn’t that sound sane and do-able and FREEING??
So, what say YOU, Easy Company? Is this a bullseye? What’s your experience with trying to create balance? If you’re ahead of the curve, when did you give up the goal of balance and try something else? Are you in the midst of the shift now, and if so, how’s it working out for you?
I, for one, am so done with trying not to totter off the totter board, so I’m chunking the damn thing in the trash (oh, crud – forgot to put the trash out this morning!), and I’m going to immerse myself in the beauty of my entirely unbalanced life.