Tuesday, January 29, 2013

TOOLBAG TUESDAY

More than twice…uh…thrice, I’ve arrived at my apartment late at night, sleepy, hungry, having to pee and realized I didn’t have my key.

“Ughhhhh!” I'd wail, flopping onto the wicker chair on the porch.

Sometimes I’d (attempt to) climb through the front window. Other times I’d text my roommate about where she was. Sometimes I’d go back into my friends’ car and go to their house.

Once, I was so frustrated that I rattled the handle thinking it would somehow know me from a burglar and automatically open its doors, lovingly. 

“GOD...EFFING...D…!!!!” I yelled.

More frustrating than that, though, is being locked INSIDE an apartment whose doors are also not opening lovingly for you.

Did I say frustrating? I mean nightmare. 

This happened to my friend Michelle last week, all thanks to the DUMB GUY she was dating.

Mark, the dumb guy, had just moved into an apartment in a hipster part of town (“got to move in a week early! Yea!”) but it was a shithole. He and Michelle dated for several months and they would often stay over at her comfortable non-shithole.

For some reason, Mark wanted Michelle to sleep at his new place the very night he got the key, with no furniture and no toothpaste. Ugh.

She frowned. She wanted her place. And his was freezing. But as it got late, she said OK, fine, I’ll stay and they were actually having a nice time until Marc got a call from his friend asking to meet him at a bar.

The guy’s girlfriend had just dumped him and he was a mess. Michelle saw an opportunity.

“Why don’t I go home and you can come to my house afterwards because I live closer to the bar you need to go to,’” she offered.

And even though this was her SECOND verbal hesitation about staying over, Marc ignored it.

He said he really wanted to get comfortable staying at his new place; actually, he wanted BOTH of them to get comfortable at his new place so he told her to stay, that he’d be back in an hour.

Since they were newly dating, she wanted to be chill and all, so she told him goodnight and he left and locked the door.

The next thing she remembers is waking up with a start, as so happens when sleeping in a new place…alone….and she looked at the clock. Marc had been gone for FOUR hours.

Michelle called. No answer. Called again. Texted. Texted. Did he forget about her?? Was he in jail???

His phone didn’t go straight to voicemail and she saw that the texts she sent him were being marked as “delivered,” which was even more infuriating.  

So she decided to get dressed and drive home. She had work the next day and it was 3:30 in the morning.

That’s when she realized that the door was locked, and the only key was in his pocket. Michelle looked around the apartment for the first time from an escapee's point-of-view.

Security bars on all the windows. No key for the back door. She was trapped!!! Inside!!! It was a total nightmare.

And…HELLO! FIRE HAZARD!

I, personally, would not do very well in that situation considering how I felt about those Chilean miners a few years ago. I’d crack. I'd be so livid.

(P.S. WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO THEM?? WHAT HAPPENED TO THEIR MOVIE DEAL???)

Anyway. Back to Michelle.

She called and texted Marc again with the news that uh, she couldn’t leave his apartment, PLEASE CALL PLEASE COME BACK, but still nothing in reply. She then became very aware that it wasn’t a good neighborhood.

Crying and panicky, she stayed awake on alert plotting an emergency escape. 

How early was too early to call Pop-a-Lock?? Wait, does Pop-a-Lock free girlfriends from their boyfriend’s apartments??

She thought of calling the cops if he wasn’t home by the time she had to get up and go to work. Worst day of work ever when you spend the entire night awake on alert.

At 5:30 in the morning, Marc stumbled in, wasted. No apology.

No, he said he didn’t see her 34 phone calls or 15 text messages. He didn’t care about her state of mind. 

Instead of, "I'm so sorry I scared you so bad, how about some pancakes???" he just said, "Let's just go to sleep" and dismissed her suffering.

Then, he said, OMG: “I really want to get comfortable staying here.”

Comfortable!  Hahahahahahaa! 

That was the absolute last thing Michelle felt in his prison house.

On the bright side, after promptly leaving when she saw the open door, walking into her own place with her own key was the most satisfying feeling ever.

And then, after Marc refused to acknowledge ANY wrongdoing on his part: "I don't know why you wake up so often at night! You should have just gone back to sleep!" (UGH), dumping him was equally as satisfying.

-Jenny

‘Naughty parading

I’ve seen Mardi Gras parades from almost every angle. As a child, I watched from a wooden seat/bench attached to the top of a ladder with my dad standing behind it; in elementary school from balconies and porches at my parents’ friends’ parties. 

I’ve had front row view, a back row view. I’ve joined makeshift walking parades in the French Quarter. Last year, I even rode on a float on Mardi Gras day, the first time I’ve thrown beads, not waved for them.

This year I got a whole new perspective, which I thought was impossible after 29 years of parading. And it’s not even Mardi Gras day yet!

This year, I joined a dance krewe. The star-steppin Cosmonaughties!!! 



We’re cosmic…and naughty.

I had my dancing debut last Saturday night when we danced in between Mardi Gras floats for 7.1 miles down St. Charles Avenue, passing thousands and thousands of people, properly strutting our stuff. 

I don’t like being cliché (and especially not about Mardi Gras) but all I can say is that it was honestly the most fun I’ve had in a long time.

…Like, I can’t stop talking about it. Still, three days later. 

My poor friend Meredith had to put up with me all day Sunday randomly blurting out, “Oh! and then we saw THIS….!!!” All. Day. 

(It’s OK, I bought her beer.)

Aside from looking AWESOME dressed up in a blue, black and silver outfit and dancing (which I love more than most things in life), my favorite part was seeing Mardi Gras from that perspective.

People are cheering for you, but they don’t want beads. They just want you to do something cool or even just smile, like a celebrity. (MARY KATE??!!??)

Hundreds of thousands of eyes are on you during the parade, everywhere you look. 
And when you told all your friends that you would be in the back row, you got acquaintances of all walks of life suddenly calling your name, cheering. 

I saw work colleagues, high school friends, college friends, old co-workers, MY BOSS and my parents to name a few, sprinkled throughout the night. 

There were people on the sidelines who danced along to the music, people whose faces I couldn’t see behind cameras, people who went crazy screaming when we did even the most basic moves.

Because when 36 decked-out ladies are all doing something in sync, that’s something to marvel at. 

Seriousuly, we could have all walked down the street with our hands in the air like Cornholio (uh, late 90s joke) and that would have gotten claps and cheers.












But we did this instead.

I had the great fortune of standing behind a dancer who was dressed as the best astronaut ever, with silver metallic tights, silver metallic jacket, a blue metallic bandeau top (P.S., guys, this. is. a. bandeau. top. Ha). 

On top of that she wore a space helmet all lit up with LED lights and caught the attention of MANY a professional photographer. 

I stood right behind her and watched as she was followed for a good distance by a guy holding the most expensive video camera I’d ever seen, ducking down and making circular shots, talking on his headset to someone. (TMZ IS THAT YOU???)

He must have followed her for a straight two minutes. She just looked ahead and smiled like a professional…astronaut. 

“You’re going to be in, like, 14 documentaries!” I told her.

My other favorite part was that the four months of weekly practices (four months!) paid off. I like working towards a goal. And I had four friends who were on the team, so…bonus. 

I know it sounds like a lot, but four months is actually the right amount of time it takes people who are otherwise busy with their lives to learn six dances without being overwhelmed.

Each week, we would gather at a yoga studio or a house with a big living room and work on moves and counts and listen to really good music. It wasn’t work at all.

Also not work were the dance parties we had along the route. A PROPER DANCE PARTY IN THE STREET!!! Something probably banned in the Mid-West!!

See, during parades, there are times where you’re stopped and instead of doing a memorized routine, we all just let loose and went crazy high-energy dancing with each other, and with whoever wanted to join in. 

I distinctly remember the cutest little boy dancing with us in the street, he couldn’t have been more than six years old, literally raising the roof and smiling so big I gave him one of my blinking blue bracelets. 

And then wished I could adopt him.

Lastly, my other other, other favorite part was that we all got to pick our own blue, black and silver outfits.


To the moon and back!!!

Some other dance krewes in New Orleans wear the same outfits, which is fine and all, but being able to pick out your ensemble lets you show off your personality. And I think people put a lot more effort into their personalized outfits than they would if they had to wear, say, the same Discount Dance ordered thing.

(For example, if the only way I could stand out in a group dressed like po-boy sandwiches was to not wear a lettuce hat, I’d have less fun.)

For my outfit, I fashioned a Forever 29 21 skirt into a tube top, got leopard fishnets, a turquoise skirt and had my sewing genius friend make a tutu top I saw in a magazine and fell in love with. 


(I also had my brother buy me some sweet silver sneakers for Christmas and I liked thinking about him when I’d look down.)

So, yea, it was nice little Saturday. WHAT DID YOU DO??

I have a video below that my roommate took, that I believe captures the sprit of the street dance party, at least a little. (When my mom figures out how to upload a video I'll post that too.)


video
kisses, ya'll

I’m still waiting to find a clip of the astronaut dancer somewhere…in a documentary. 

If you see something like that, let me know. It could easily become my other, other, other, other, other favorite thing.




-Jenny

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

TOOLBAG TUESDAY

I know movies aren’t real life and neither is Carrie Bradshaw (dammit), but in that movie with Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Mcconaughey where she tries to get him to fall in love with her and move out of his parent’s house, she uses a dying dog as bait.

Well, a fake dying dog. 

She asks him to come with her to the vet to “put down” her dog, which really isn’t her dog and who really isn’t dying.

As her character explains: I cry, he cries. It totally bonds us.” 

I sort of get the point. In a relationship, asking someone to come with you to euthanize your pet is a huge emotional step. If you’re the person being asked to do this, it shows a certain vulnerability in your partner and makes you feel good that you were selected to make them feel better.

Right????

Jonas didn’t think that way. 
I honestly think he just needed a ride to the vet. 

Jonas dated my friend Molly for about five weeks, which was surprising considering he had a reputation for being a serial dater. 

They had gone out to dinner, movies, weddings, parties and had numerous sleepovers.

“We need to do this together,” he would say, looking at travel deals for skiing. 

Or, “We need to do that together,” he would say looking at (fill-in-the-blank-something-coupley).

Molly and Jonas hadn’t discussed the future or being exclusive, but she was his one and only girl at the moment, and she felt special.

Then his cat got sick and crashed. Fatally sick like leukemia or cancer or something equally tragic and had to be put down. 

“Will you come with me?” Jonas asked Molly.

Matthew Mcconaughey Molly was taken aback. This was a huge step. 

He wanted HER? To be there for this moment? It was huge. And even though, no, who wants to see a pet die??? Of course, she said. Of course I’ll be there for you.

She drove him and his cat wrapped in a blanket to the vet’s office very early one Saturday morning and stood next to him as the poor thing was euthanized. 

She cried, he cried. She hugged him and they spent the rest of the emotional day together. Molly felt more connected to him than ever before.

The next day turned out to be equally as emotional. 

Jonas dumped her.

“I’m not ready for a relationship,” he said over the phone.

!!!
WHAT!!!!
!!!!!

NOT READY FOR A RELATIONSHIP??!!!?

SINCE WHEN????

Why did he ask her to come with him to the vet’s office so they could cry and hold each other, uh, THE DAY BEFORE??? 

That’s not something you just ask someone you’re dating to do and then dump them. 

He should have asked his mom to go with him.

And what’s with the whole “we should do this and that” shit together??? Why even say that???

It was infuriating. 

Molly hung up on him without responding, thinking he’d call back or change his mind. At least a text, right?? 

AT LEAST A TEXT FOR KIBBLES' SAKE!!

But she never heard from him again. And she’s been wary of guys who own cats ever since.

-Jenny

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

TOOLBAG TUESDAY

I think Urban Dictionary is screwing guys up, because they don’t know what “bitch” or “whore” means anymore.
Wait, let me re-phrase. They don’t know when it’s appropriate to call someone those things. 
To be fair, I’d be confused, too, with 337 entries for the word “bitch" on there. 
337 entries!!! (In related news: That apple on the counter is acting like such a bitch.)
Now, I’m not one to condone name-calling to a significant other, but if you’re going to do it, you might as well say something that makes sense, right?? (Ideally something more helpful like ‘selfish’ or ‘discourteous.’) 
Charles, this guy my friend Sophie dated, routinely used the wrong insults when yelling at her. They dated on and off for a year.
Charles was funny and loud, but he drank too much and had a short fuse and when he’d get mad, he would start with these insults that didn’t make sense, and weren’t even warranted. 
Like when Mr. Bigglesworth's dad in Austin Powers would accuse chestnuts of being lazy. Haha.
Sort of the same thing. Only with curse words.
The first time Charles, uh, missed the mark was when they were out singing karaoke. It was a fun atmosphere and he and Sophie were very much together and being flirty with each other.
One guy that they didn’t know was up on stage singing a heavy metal song and was really getting into it. He was actually headbanging. Everyone was laughing.
His song ended right when Sophie stood up to go to the bar for another drink, and as she passed him she said, “Hey, man, nice air guitar!” 
“Thanks!” he laughed and walked back to his group.
When Sophie got back to the table, Charles was visibly annoyed.
“What's wrong?” she asked.
“Why do you have to be such a whore????” he asked.
????
“WHAT?” Sophie said. 
“Oh, nice ‘air guitar,’” he mocked her. “WHORE.”
Hahahahahahaha
WHAT!
Isn’t a “whore” someone who sleeps around with a lot of people (urban dictionary??) 
Since when is a “whore” someone who compliments a guy’s bitchin air guitar and then politely walks away? 
Did she black out, take her clothes off and hump this guy without realizing it?? 
Did she offer to sleep with him for money?
No. 
It was confusing. 
Sophie remembers, “he would always get drunk and accuse me of being a whore for no reason."
(Side note: If that’s his definition of a whore, I’d really hate to see what he calls uhhhhhhh…everyone else in the world.)
Sophie and Charles would get into fights over his ridiculous outbursts but they’d always make up the next day.
The final straw came a few months later, when Charles got upset and reached into his brain for another insult that made no sense.
He was supposed to meet Sophie and other people at one of their friend’s going-away party.
The party was at a bar that Charles and Sophie had been to many, many times with these same friends. “The one we ALWAYS went to,” she recalls.
“Meet me there at ten because we’re all grabbing dinner before,” Sophie told him.
“Ok, see you then,” Charles said.
When Charles wasn’t at the bar by 10:30, Sophie called him.
“I’m at the bar, where are you?” Charles asked.
“I’m here! I’m looking around, I don’t see you!” Sophie said.
“I’m downtown,” he said. 
“Downtown?? Why are you downtown? I haven’t been to their downtown location in two years!” Sophie said. “We’re all all the uptown one.”
That’s when Charles lost his shit. 
He tried his best to use his words.
“You're…A STUPID BITCH!” he said. 
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA  
(Let’s check Urban Dictionary…is she a female dog? Is she Paris Hilton??)
Because I don't see an entry for "stupid bitch" that means someone else went to the wrong place.
“How am I a bitch? OR STUPID??" Sophie yelled. "We always go to this location, I didn’t need to specify.”
That’s when Charles accused her of “tricking him" into going to the wrong location and “lying to him" for her own “shady” agenda.
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
Excuse me?? Baking power???
Tricking, lying and "being shady" didn't apply here at all. 
In fact, it would have been more shady if they were at the downtown location and she hadn’t specified.
Charles assuming they were downtown and now being an hour late is even more shady than what really happened.
He eventually showed up at the right location but didn’t let it go, and put an even bigger damper on the going-away party. 
They broke up soon after that, Charles no doubt still believing that she was, is and will always be, a whore.
I told her to imagine him being as lazy as a chestnut.
-Jenny

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Forbidden fruit

One of the most baffling moments in my life came when I was at the JFK International Airport in New York, in a busy terminal waiting for my luggage.

I had just flown back from Spain, where I spent a semester abroad, and was reverse culture-shocked by all the signs in English and all the blonde people.

I was chatting with a fellow student in the “international arrivals” baggage claim, when suddenly a BEAGLE wearing a VEST showed up out of nowhere, put his paw on my backpack sitting next to me and went, “YAP!”

“What the---” I looked at the dog, and then followed his leash up to a very stern police officer.

“Ma’am, do you have any fruit in your bag?” the officer asked.

I blinked. It was my first encounter with an American since I returned.

“Um…fruit?” I asked. My eyes looked up to my right brain quadrant. I was thinking.

“Yes, fruit. Like, an apple or an orange,” the police officer said. “Or a plant of some kind.”

“Ummm…” I said, trailing off. People were now staring.

I had left Spain 15 hours before and was tired and confused. Then I remembered that my Spanish host family had given me a bag lunch before I left, and parts of it were still in my bag. Including an apple. I gulped.

“Yes…I think I have an apple,” I said.

“Come with me,” he said, more sternly, giving the beagle a treat for calling me out.

My friend looked at me with wide eyes as I followed the officer and the hound to a “secure” area with more officers.

Baffling was the fact that the dog smelled the apple. It was un-pierced!!!! Wrapped inside a grocery bag…inside a backpack…in a BUSY AIRPORT TERMINAL!! I couldn’t believe it.

What a ridiculous super power.

The officer took my passport, customs form and airline ticket and handed it to someone else to review. Then he told me to put my backpack on a table and then please step over here, ma’am.

All the other officers treated the backpack like there was a bomb in it. Using gloves, another officer took it and carefully opened it, thoroughly checking every pocket, even the lining.

They then took out the plastic grocery bag and removed the offending apple. The beagle went ape shit barking.

More people started staring.

HOW CAN IT SMELL AN APPLE???? A WAXY, UNPIERCED APPLE??? HOW??? (I imagined closing my eyes in the produce department of a grocery store and trying to pick out what’s what just by smelling it. Not possible.)


“Did you know it is against the law to bring fruit or vegetables to the United States from foreign countries?” the officer asked, interrupting my thoughts.
“Ummm…” I said.

(Yes, I remembered reading a sign at customs but had totally forgotten that the leftover lunch was in my bag. )

“No…I did not know that,” I lied.

“Well it IS!” he snapped. “It very much IS! Do you know that THIS (he dramatically waved the apple) could wipe out our entire crop industry???”

“Ummm…” I said. “I’m sorry. I forgot it was in there.”

The officer made a dramatic display of throwing the apple in the trash can and consulted with the other officers about what to do with me.

The first officer walked away with the beagle, on more fruit duty.

After a few minutes, I was dismissed, with a warning that if I had "forgotten" any other fruit, plants or vegetables in my luggage, I needed to turn them over to the authorities immediately. I agreed.

“So sorry,” I said as I returned to the conveyor belt.

I explained the whole thing to my friend (“…AND I don’t even LIKE red apples! That's why I didn't eat it!!...”) who laughed and said she thought my luggage had come around already, but wasn’t sure.

As I was waiting, I stared at the beagle walking around the terminal sniffing everyone's bags. He had already forgotten about me and my apple, that pesky, pesky fruit that keeps getting chicks in trouble.

-Jenny

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

TOOLBAG TUESDAY

What’s the deal with guys sending girls picture text messages of their naked penises??

…TO GIRLS THEY JUST MET??

Don’t they know they’ll never be in a Mr. USA pageant with incriminating evidence like that???

It’s also insulting. Like…what…you think I’m a slut?? Ohhh !!!! A PENIS!!! I’ll come running!!!!

Really, this is becoming an epidemic. Someone tell MTV to start aiming their public service announcements about the embarrassment of sexting nudie shots towards boys, not girls.

I mentioned this before, (and so has Seinfeld): guys don’t have attractive parts. There’s a reason why there aren’t pin-up calendars of dudes with their junk hanging out, all lopsided.

A few weeks ago, I wrote about this dude who sent my friend a picture of his junk after she pretty much dumped him.

“GOOD LUCK FINDING SOMEONE THIS BIG!” he wrote, along with a photo.

His gross factor doubled.

Certainly, there are exceptions to this rule. I imagine a long-distance relationship and/or a frisky Skype session would warrant peen exposure. Perhaps you have a girlfriend (or boyfriend) who likes that sort of thing. Great.

But don’t expect someone you JUST MET to be interested. Because more than likely, they will be grossed out, and they will show it to their friends. (MTV was right!!!)

This guy Casey, our second naked picture offender, decided to send a nude picture of himself to my friend Haley, someone he had gone on two dates with who he HADN’T EVEN KISSED.

Right.

They met at a bar and went to dinner and aside from a long, lingering hug, they hadn’t had any romantic contact. Not that Haley didn’t want any. He was cute and a firefighter. Swoon.

The way this SHOULD have played out is when Haley texted him that she’d have to cancel dinner plans because she was terribly sick, he should have brought her some soup or crackers or a Red Box movie rental.

Not texting her: “Really? You don’t want to hook up?”

(Um. No.)

“I have a 100 degree fever,” she replied. She said later that she thought he meant ‘hook up’ like ‘meet up.’

He did not.

Haley got another text from him and looked in horror at the screen of a picture of his lower body, from the neck down, PANTS DOWN reflected in his bathroom mirror with his penis out. (um…shaved. TMI)

“maybe this will make you feel better,” he wrote.

!!!!!
!!!!!

WHAT!!!!

SOUP, CASEY. SOUP.

It was shocking to see the pornography period, especially since she hadn’t even seen him with his shirt off. She didn't even know his last name! Why would the penis of a stranger make her feel better??

It was actually violating to the eyes, which were already swollen and burning as it is.

After a minute she wrote, “Maybe there was some miscommunication.”

Haley expected him to apologize or something. SHE WAS A LADY G-DAMMIT!

She had a terrible medicine head cold and was dizzy and this just made her feel worse, and dirty.

“Well, nevermind then” he wrote back.

!!!!!!!!
NEVERMIND!!!

And that was it. She never heard from him again.

What a dick.

-Jenny 
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