Monthly Archives: November 2013

British Television: Authentic and Appreciated

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I’ve been watching a lot of British television lately. I have gotten into Call the Midwife and Doc Martin recently. And I am about to start The Thick of It. I have always appreciated the dry, quick wit of our friends from across the pond. And the dramas have a way of making you actually care about the characters. But there is one characteristic of these programs that has really caught my attention and appreciation and is very much in contrast to American television – the casting.

If you turn on TV in America, you will see perfect teeth (likely veneers), size zeros, fake boobs, hair extensions, injected lips and so much makeup you would never recognize the actor without it. And pathetically, I am one of those weak-minded people who fall into the inferiority trap. I watch these shows and it somehow gets into my brain that I am supposed to look the way they do. But since I do not have the money or the balls to have surgery nor the discipline to starve myself – it is simply not possible. Because of this, I go through life feeling…well…ugly.

Cognitively, I know this is irrational. I know why they look the way they do. And I know that Americans have such an obsession with this contrived idea of beauty. Our media is the chicken and the egg. They have convinced a large portion of the public that we need to look a certain way and be a certain size in order to be attractive. And Hollywood perpetuates this by casting roles with actors whom are far from average. And while this happens with male roles, it is far more prevalent with females. We don’t blink when some geeky, short guy gets the “hot” chic. But do we ever see the chunky, average looking gal get the “hot” guy? Very rarely.

I do see some out of the ordinary examples once in a while. The Mindy Project is one show that does well at breaking this barrier. And Drop Dead Diva is another. But it is very few and far between.

However, when I watch British programming, it is so refreshing to see regular looking people. All shapes and sizes. Crooked teeth, real breasts, very little makeup…they look like…well, you and me. How fucking fabulous it that? And sure, they have their super beauties too. I mean, those damn hot chics are everywhere. Even in Racine, believe it or not. So we cannot escape them completely. But while watching these shows, we get a much more authentic appearance sample of the actual public.

I don’t know many people from England. But I have to wonder if they have body image issues to the degree that we do. I’d be willing to bet they do not.

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The Me Me Me Facebook Game – MY TURN!

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So, I guess I was supposed to come up with 11 secrets nobody knows about me. Well…as you may know…my life is pretty much an open book. What I haven’t already or do not talk about – sure ain’t getting put on a Facebook status. But I came up with a few things that many people probably don’t know (nor would give a shit). And I decided to make it a blog post because…well…I felt like it.

 

1. I don’t know how to use chopsticks and I really am too uncoordinated to pull it off gracefully anyway.

2. I used to eat an entire sleeve of saltines after school almost every day as a young child. When I started to drive, that changed to a half of a loaf of fresh, warm French bread from O&H Bakery.

 

3. Even though I would probably love many different things about it, I am not terribly motivated to travel outside of the U.S.

4. A couple of weeks ago, Charlie brought home a pack of cigarettes. Since then I have been smoking about 2-3 cigarettes a day. I feel like shit about it too…physically and psychologically. I really need to start getting my healthy on…like now.

5. Sometimes I am pretty certain I was supposed to be a cat. And not just because I lick my own butt.

6. I have ten ear piercings. 3 on one ear, 7 on the other. Because I am allergic to nickel, it is very difficult to find matching earrings that are small enough and don’t give me a rash.

7. I admit that I did have a navel ring (P.C.) but I have never had a tramp stamp.

8. I take a bath AND a shower almost every single day.

9. I hate winter with the frozen cold intensity of an ice cream headache. I do not belong here and dream of the day when I can see sunshine and feel warm sand whenever I want.

10. I never learned how to play an instrument and I am pretty torn up about it.

11. Chances are, when you see me in public or at any kind of gathering…I am having anxiety. Some times more than others. Chances are speaking to you makes me nervous even though I am probably enjoying it. I am always worried I will say something stupid, have bad breath or just look ridiculous in just about every conceivable way. So, if I am acting weird…it is because I feel weird.

Hyperbolic Envy for Breakfast

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I never thought I would actually admit this publicly. It is embarrassing and I worry that people I actually like will hold it against me. I mean, really, it makes me sound so petty and unevolved. Kinda humiliating actually. But you know me…it is hard to keep my mouth shut when a thought makes its way into my thick skull.

Anyway…here goes it…

I am jealous of you.

(long belly sigh of relief with a touch of apprehension)

Yea, You. On Facebook. You make me feel those envious feelings with which I have always struggled.

Your constant happiness furrows my forehead. Your successes lead me down the road of inferiority. It’s all your fault that l feel poopy. And I just thought you should know.

Okay, fine. Maybe it’s not ALL your fault. But still…sometimes I do find myself in Poopyville covered in self-pity and resentment after reading my timeline.

I suck, don’t I? I mean, shouldn’t I feel happy for you? Shouldn’t I live a better life knowing that your’s is impeccable and graceful? And it’s not that I want bad things to happen to you. I would, honestly, rather you be content and pleased with your life. Really. Truly.

It’s just that I want that shiny happy life too.

Your kids are flawless. They always get good grades and special admiration from their teachers. I can see from your shared quotes that they say things far beyond their years and are clearly genius and way smarter than my kids. Your children clean their rooms, make you breakfast and never ever drive you to madness.

Your marriage reflects one of a romance novel. You two always post sweet messages to one another. All of your pictures are kissy kissy. And you never, ever fight. You’ve never even considered couple’s therapy; you’d never need it. In fact, you’re probably teaching your own “How to Have the Perfect Marriage” seminar. You don’t understand how anyone could ever cheat. Divorce is not in your vocabulary and your in-laws love you more than your own family – which is quite the feat since your family thinks you shit gold.

You don’t watch TV. You don’t have time for such drivel. And you have read every book on Oprah’s list and know the classics by heart.

You spend your vacations snorkeling in Hawaii and hiking in Costa Rica. And every holiday you serve food to the homeless.

You run 12 miles a day, when you have a cold. You enter every marathon and 5k within a 20 mile radius. And you’ve lost 8 pounds since Monday. You call yourself “bad” if you add cheese to your quinoa. And you only eat cake on your birthday. You buy all organic and haven’t had meat in 6 years.

You have 3495 friends. They all know you and like everything you post. You’re at a different party every weekend and have a girl’s night out once a week. You’re friends with all of your exes and they fawn over every picture you post. You never have to be alone except when you meditate, which you do 20 minutes each day.

You are a yoga master and can bend in the most unnatural positions. You look great in a bikini after 4 kids and 2 C-sections. Your boobs have never sagged because of your stellar genetics. And you function wonderfully on only 5 hours of sleep. You are wrinkle free and swear it is because you wear sunscreen even in the dark.

You have three degrees, work 10 hours a day and volunteer for every field trip.

You never yell or scream or swear. You live in a place of peace and positivity. You don’t complain or insult. Your self-confidence is genuine and unwavering. You are lovely in every way and when you die, the world will suddenly tilt to one side.

I want to be you. I have no excuses. I have to create the change. And perhaps I will do just that. Right after this 4th fun sized Snickers and episode of Real Housewives.

Let’s Get Some Things Straight (Purple Rayne)

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PictureFact…Divide and Conquer. Workin’ better than ever. They press a few buttons and watch the little people do their work for them. It was a brilliant tactic with labor issues and now it is effective with the Mary Burke take-down  They are sitting back, eating their Vossy popcorn and laughing at the spectacle they have created. 

Instead of looking toward an ultimate common goal, instead of embracing differences, instead of having some patience and open minds – we have turned the guns onto ourselves. And if we don’t get our shit together, once that trigger is pulled, we will see another four years of irreversible TEA Party damage. 

Fact…There will be primaries. Please stop wetting yourselves. As you can see HERE, there are already several registered candidates for the 2014 Governor’s race. 

Can we PLEASE stop this moaning and demand for a primary? There WILL be a primary.

Fact…You can vote for whomever you like. If I hear one more time that the DPW or Progressive’s United or EMILY’s List or Joe Friggin Shmoe on Facebook is forcing you to vote for a particular candidate – I AM GOING TO SCREAM. No one is forcing you to do anything. Nothing is being shoved anywhere. This complaint is reminiscent of the irrational tantrums of a toddler.

Okay, so let’s put it this way: a lot of people watch The Walking Dead. People talk about it everywhere you go. There are memes all over Facebook and it often trends on Twitter. People like it. People talk about it. Let’s say you do not watch it. Therefore you have no interest in those tweets or memes. Are you going to spend your day bitching because other people like something you do not? If you do not eat meat, are you going to demand that restaurants take it off their menus?

You don’t like it? Don’t watch it. Don’t eat it. Don’t vote for it. Quit acting like such a goddamn victim.

See the rest of the story HERE