Friday, September 30, 2016

Who Me?

"You have a nice face," says the lady at the Ageless makeup counter.  "Not everyone does."  Well said, m'lady!  If there's a better way to get this Short Jewish Gal to unload obscene amounts of dinero, I have yet to hear it.  Of course, she catches me at a vulnerable moment.  I'm looking for the Delusions counter.  This is meant to be a strike attack:  Get the foundation powder.  Get the lipstick.  Get out of Macy's alive.

"Delusions?" says Nahid, leaving her post.  I detect a hint of distress in her voice.  Now she's standing in front of me, smiling earnestly.  She touches my arm, as if we're old friends, and delivers the news.  "Oh, honey, Delusions went out of business." Say what?!  The uber-fluorescent makeup department, harshly lit to magnify every facial flaw, begins to spin.  In shock, I sit down in the comfy makeup chair.  I feel right at home.  "Are you alright, dear?" asks Nahid.  I don't answer.  Nahid spritzes me with a fine Ageless mist.  I'm magically revived.  "I just... I can't believe it.  I've been a Delusions customer for a while now and..."  I collect myself.  I don't wish to weep in front of my newly-appointed beauty consultant.  "It was all over the Internet," Nahid tells me.

She goes in for the kill, but I'm still grieving, so I don't even notice.  Well played, m'lady!  "Tell me what Delusions products you used.  I have a list I can cross-reference. We'll find you something compatible."  And ridiculously more expensive.  She neglects to mention price, but it matters not.  I'm now under Nahid's spell.  She's told me I have a nice face.  Not everyone does!  I will purchase whatever she recommends, even if it means the sons must forego their inheritance.

This is so much better than the majority of makeup encounters I've endured over the years. Just try walking through a makeup department in New York.  "I have something for those fine lines," doesn't ignite my spending gene.  "I have something for those dark circles," doesn't inspire my credit card.  Au contraire.  These gals and occasional guys who deal in skincare should recognize those of us whose epidermis runs on the thin side.  Insults are not the way to my wallet.  Skip the trauma.  Try some good ol' American flattery.  Whether it's sincere or a reasonable facsimile, go ahead and fawn.  That's the ticket to ca-ching.  Tell me my skin looks great, omit "for someone your age" and we're talkin' commerce.  Nahid gets that.  She gets me.  No wonder we click.  She says, "Try this lipstick."  And, "This blush matches your cheeks perfectly."  And, "Look at that glow on your face."

Not once does she hurl a posthumous dig at Delusions. Nahid is too subtle, too skilled, to sink that low.  Before I know it, she's ringing up the bill.  The amount takes me by surprise.  I grip the counter to steady myself.  She reaches for the spritzer again.  "It's okay, I'm good," I tell her.  "Any samples you can throw my way?"  Nahid winks.  "I'll be right back."

Thursday, September 29, 2016

The Bugle-Kugel Connection

The Kugeler 

As the family kugeler, it's my duty to tell you new things about this heavenly dish. In the past, the only word I could find that rhymes with kugel is Google. But today, I've thought of a brand new word that rhymes so beautifully with kugel, I just had to toot about it: Bugle. You heard me. Bugle rhymes with kugel.

The Bugler

Why didn't I think of this before?  Let me consult the assortment of mental health professionals who keep me going, and get back to you. I can tell you this: I mention bugle and kugel in the same breath because a bugle originated from animal horns, and a shofar is made of a ram's horn, and Rosh Hashanah is a time when people eat too much kugel before, during (you never know who's sneaked in a slice in shul) and after the sound of the shofar, and clearly, the shofar is a cousin of the bugle. Whether the shofar and the bugle are still talking, or whether they're pretending they're not related, I can't tell you. But there you have it. The bugle-kugel connection.  You're welcome, bitches. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Hysterias & Posteriors

"Best friends graduated from medical and graduate school at the same time and decided that, in spite of the different specialties, they would open a practice together. Dr. Smith was the Psychologist and Dr. Jones was the Proctologist. They put up a sign reading: Dr. Smith and Dr. Jones: Hysterias and Posteriors. The town council was livid and insisted they change it. So the docs changed it to  read: Schizoids and Hemorrhoids. This was also not acceptable. Again they changed the sign: Catatonics and High Colonics - no go. Next, they tried: Manic Depressives and Anal Retentives - thumbs down again. Then came: Minds and Behinds - still no good. Another attempt resulted in: Lost Souls and Butt Holes - unacceptable again! So they tried: Analysis and Anal Cysts - not a chance. Nuts and Butts - no way. Freaks and Cheeks - still no good. Loons and Moons - forget it. Almost at their wit's end, the docs finally came up with: Dr. Smith and Dr. Jones - Specializing in Odds and Ends. Everyone loved it!" -- from a British humor website, courtesy of dear friend and former dog walkie soulmate, Cheryl.  

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Last Night...

For 90 minutes, I looked like this.



And so much this.

And when it was finally over, this.

Monday, September 26, 2016

He Did It!

If I'm being honest, and when am I not being honest, I didn't think he could do it, and I said so, in various ways: No way. No possible way. No eff'n way. In hindsight, I realize, this wasn't the most supportive wifely approach. I could've been more of a cheerleader. But I was only a cheerleader for one game in 9th grade, so I'm a bit rusty when it comes to "rah, rah, rah, go take that ball, go down the field and score, score." It's true. I dropped the ball on this one. I did some eye-rolling, some heavy sighing. I may have laughed, derisively, once or twice. But this thing he wanted to do, this impossible feat, struck me as so out of reach, so unrealistic, that I couldn't muster much enthusiasm, especially when he set a specific goal: End of September. End. Of. September. Cruel SJG that I am, I just sat back and did nothing. And guess what? Yep. He did it. He emptied the storage unit. The eldest's fancy-ass bike? Side of the house. His barbecue? Side of the house. The boxes of CDs and books and stuff I schlepped from my sweet daddy's condo? Inside the house. Every closet? Filled to capacity. Still. For the first time in years, Public Storage can kiss our tushies. We're out of there. All thanks to hubby. He did it. With no help from me. Maybe if I play my cards right, this trend of me sitting back and doing bupkis will continue.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Well-Dressed, Well-Coiffed

Mom, Dad and the first son

Gloria Starr: Well-dressed. Well-coiffed. Well-read. Well-liked. Beloved, in fact. Adored. Elegant. Stylish. Political since Adlai Stevenson. Big on JFK. The original SJG. Come to think of it, she had an inch on me. Couldn't leave the house without makeup on. "I'm putting my face on," she'd say, when I called in the morning. Couldn't look schlumpy if she tried.

June 4, 1927  - September 23, 1999

Great laugh. Great smile. Great friend. Great mom. The best. Seventeen years today. Still miss her. Always will. Some things never change. 

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Coming This Fall: The Designated Kvetcher

As a lower-level presidential appointee, Tom Schmirkovitz never imagined something intestinal would happen that would catapult him to higher office. When a devastating attack of flatulence takes down the president and most of the Cabinet, Schmirkotvitz, the only one not invited to the Oval Office Chili Cook-Off, finds himself promoted to Designated Kvetcher of the free world. Suddenly tasked with sorting through all the stomach complaints issued by Americans in the past 18 years, Schmirkovitz struggles to keep the USA from tooting itself out of existence. A new, critically-panned disappointment premiering tonight on SJG-TV. Sponsored by Gas-X. Check local listings. Scheduling is iffy.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

By The Freeway

Set in Sherman Oaks during the mid-2000s, Sarah, a former Israeli folk dancer who grapevines lopsidedly through life, and her hot, but troubled husband, Mordechai, an American wall-paperer/former male stripper, travel the San Fernando Valley together. They argue about traffic, and why he switches lanes like a lunatic, and why she switches radio stations like a hyperkinetic kangaroo. They argue about where to eat. They argue about where to park. It seems Sarah and Mordecai have hit a dead-end. But when Waze sends them down the wrong street, they find themselves on a mysterious cul-de-sac, Thousand Oaks-adjacent, where Sarah and Mordechai draw close to some of the more eccentric inhabitants, such as Floyd, a local RV owner/jacuzzi repairman, and Sheila, a fetching leaf-blower operator/former exotic flower grower who just got hitched in Vegas. Exposure to newlyweds Floyd and Sheila, co-founders of Nudists Anonymous, will either reignite the passion in Sarah and Mordecai's dying marriage, or send them Googling for affordable divorce attorneys. Will the magic mushroom-infused humus Sheila serves at a barbecue help Sarah and Mordecai hallucinate how much they belong together? Or, God forbid, send them to a crowded Emergency Room that doesn't take their insurance? "By The Freeway" soon available on WhoJew, VatsNu and OyTube.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Splitsville Supremo

"Ma, guess who broke up?"
"I don't want to know. I'm trying to stay positive."
"Angie and Brad."
"Brangelina? No eff'n way! Says who?"
"People Magazine."
"Oh, dear God in heaven. If People says so, it must be true."
"You sound upset, Ma."
"Upset? No. More like shocked. I didn't expect this. I needed some warning. A head's up.  I may need a tranquilizer to calm down. We're talking Brangelina! It's sad. I could weep, but who has the energy? Plus, they've got 18 kids."
"They don't have 18 kids."
"How many kids have they got?"
"I don't know, Ma."
"Who do you think did the dumping?"
"He did."
"Oh, honey. Honey, have I taught you nothing? She did the dumping. Definitely."
"How do you know?"
"A mother knows things. Like, right now,  Jennifer Aniston is going, 'Really? REALLY?' "
"Ma, I gotta go."
"What? We're not done talking about this, young man."
"I'm done."
"I'm not. I'm just warming up."

Monday, September 19, 2016

The Carpet People

On Saturday, the paintners came. They painted this room and that room. They left. How much do I love when they leave? So much. Leaving means they're done. Today the carpet people will come. Any minute now, they'll arrive in a van and block the driveway. They'll schlep up and down the stairs with big rolls and they'll make things nice, especially the bedroom that has housed two sons over the years. First it was the eldest's room. Then he went to college and the youngest took over, vacating his smaller room. Then he went to college and the eldest moved home. Then... oh you get the picture. The two sons have left their marks on the walls and the rug, taping posters up, spilling Coke on the floor. Pizza stains, ice cream stains. Memorable imprints that never go away unless you paint over and rip out and put in new. "Where are the trophies?" the sons want to know. "Over here, in this closet." "Where are the school reports?" "Over here in this drawer and that box." "Where are all my Harry Potter books?" "In the hall closet, near the towels." "So you haven't thrown anything out?" "I wouldn't go that far." "What did you throw out?" "Stuff you didn't even know was there. Not the good stuff. The good stuff is squirreled away, ready for you to revisit some day. Years from now, you'll open a drawer or a box or a closet, and see the family tree you made in 4th grade, 8th grade and 11th grade. You'll see the team photos from hockey, soccer, basketball; the medals for showing up and playing your heart out. You'll see that picture you drew in pre-school, that kindergarten class photo, and you'll be glad we kept it."

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Best Emmy Look

Pre-Emmys, 1990.  Nice shoulder pads
Thanks to hubby and his various network jobs, we've attended the Emmys more times than he'd like to remember. I loved every second. He felt otherwise. I couldn't wait to get there. He couldn't wait to get home. Give me glam. Give me celebs in sparkly gowns and loaner jewels. Give me a dance floor, an after-party, a glass of champagne. Hubby could've done without the pomp, the parking situation, the heat. Give him football. Give him basketball. Give him a team of manly men running back and forth and smashing into each other till they bleed. My first outing to the Shrine, the eldest was an only. It was 1990. I wore my mother's black dress, her earrings, her pearls. I was a thirty-something, clocking in as a stylish sixty-something. Who cared? I was going to the Emmys. Another year, I borrowed my mom's black silk pants suit. My whole life, I borrowed her gorgeous clothes. "Let's go shopping in my closet," she'd say, and I'd step inside a magical place.  It was so chic in there, so beautifully-tailored. I loved to visit, but I never stayed long. Always been a casual SJG. T-shirts and jeans. Except when it's dress-up time. I'd give anything to get back into that closet, with Mom at my side, saying, "You'd look great in that," and "Try this one on." But I emptied it in 1999. Gave a lot away, kept a lot for myself. Some of her outfits still hang in my closet today. I used to wear them, but I don't anymore. A gal can only pull off that shoulder pad look for so long.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

My List of Demands

Every celebrity has his or her demands. That's why they're celebrities. They get to make demands. But, I ask you, why can't I, the SJG of Sherman Oaks, California, make my own demands? Just try to stop me:

Living Room should be 74 degrees
Kitchen should be 73 degrees
Outside should be 72 degrees
Coffee whenever I snap my fingers
2.5 Onion Bagels
1.5 Sesame Bagels
1.3 Egg Bagels
2 Ripe bananas
1 Semi-ripe banana
0 Mushy bananas
Lightly Seasoned Steamed Kumquats
Heavily Seasoned Steamed Rutabagas
1 Fully-Bloomed Begonia
Four Rose Scented Yahrtzeit Candles
1 Mood Elevator
1 Bottle Manischewitz (Kosher)
1 Assortment Non-Snapping Chewing gum (Sugar-Free)
1 Nice Coffee Cake
1 Naughty Chippendales Dancer
1 Large, CLEAN throw rug (non-allergenic, synthetic Guinea Pig) 
1 Vat Expensive Anti-Aging Moisturizer
1 Flattering Full-Length Mirror
1 Flattering Punim Mirror
12 Dumbbells
12 Smartbells
1 Talking Torah
1 Non-Talking Neighbor
1 Tricycle
1 Unicycle
1 Unicorn
14 Unsalted Roasted Almonds
8 Salted Unroasted Almonds
1 Twilight Zone Protein Bar

Friday, September 16, 2016

Make It All Better

It's true, the SJG is prone to viewing injuries. From time to time, I get a bit too carried away with whatever I'm viewing and manage to injure a part of my tender, petal-like anatomy. I refer you to my recent finger-crushing incident while viewing "The Night Of." I got too engrossed in HBO's did-he-or-didn't-he-do-it series, readjusted myself on the sofa during a big reveal, and crushed my middle fingie. Said fingie continues to flip me off whenever I wiggle it wrong. Not to worry. One day it will get better, or fall off, whichever comes first.

I love him so much, it hurts.

And then there's last night's viewing injury, still plaguing me this morning. I was so excited about the return of "Project Runway," so giddy with delight, that I stubbed my toe on the leg of the Lazy Boy during my ceremonial "Welcome Back, Tim Gunn" hora around the room. As I like to remind hubby, it takes so little to make me happy, assuming I don't hurt myself while expressing my TV-related glee or shock. In the throes of these inadvertent, klutzy boo-boos, it helps me to think of my sweet mom and the way she took action whenever I banged into an inanimate object as a kid. She'd lean down, knock-knock-knock on whatever I'd run into -- table corner, door, the list is too long to remember -- and say, "Baddy-o-baddy-o-baddy-o-baddy." And make it all better.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Fit As A Fiddler On The Roof

Fit as a fiddler on the roof! So says the SJG's personal shrink, Dr. Misha Mishugenna, who declared the beloved kvetcher/kugeler in "reasonably good mental health, considering everything" and "capable of blogging till she officially runs out of ideas, which could be any minute now." Dr. Mishugenna reported her findings on her national talk show, "Better You Than Me." "The SJG has had recurrent issues that revolve around her penchant for oversensitivity and reading too much into everything. Her worry levels have been relatively stable since the youngest moved out. Her new philosophy, which I'm proud to say I suggested, is, 'What I don't know can't ruin a night's sleep.' " In recent weeks, the doctor said the SJG has endured several flare ups of self-doubt and continues to question her existence, "but that's standard operating procedure for the SJG and part of a typical pattern for only her entire life. It might be time to up her meds." Dr. Mishuggena concluded that the SJG's condition isn't contagious. "Trust me, you can't catch what she's got, and that's a good thing. She remains adorably neurotic and fit to serve as a blogger of astonishing renown."

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Potent Quotables

"All right everyone, line up alphabetically,
 according to your height."
 - Casey Stengel

"Frisbeetarianism is the belief that when you die, 
your soul goes up on the roof and gets stuck." 
- George Carlin

"Don't cry over a burnt bagel. 
It wouldn't cry over you."
- The SJG

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

What Could Go Wrong?

Dear SJG,
What do you think about the news that Walmart plans to roll out motorized shopping carts that drive themselves?
Tired of Pushing

Dear Tired,
I'm thinking, what could possibly go wrong? A few things come to mind. One or two near-fatal shopping cart collisions every 15 minutes. Runaway carts with children inside. Nascar-style races up and down the aisles. Lawsuits up the wazoo. The ultimate Decline of Western Civilization. And don't get me started on all the alien civilizations. God only knows what's going on there. They've probably had motorized self-driving shopping carts forever. They're so ahead of us, it hurts my feelings. So, to answer your question, other than a few potential snafus, I'm thinking it's one of the greatest ideas in history.
You're welcome,

Monday, September 12, 2016

The TV Movie Version

Sometimes, the SJG just can't help it. I see the TV movie version of the world. I rewrite events to fit the TV movie formula embedded in my brain. I rewrite real events to find a happy, tidy, hopeful ending. In my TV movie version of life, something interesting happens before every commercial break. In real life, this is not the case.  Nothing happens and then I go to sleep and start all over again.  But in the TV movie version, a mysterious hunk shows up at my door in the first 15 minutes, and turns my mundane existence upside down. "Can I use your phone?" he asks. The SJG knows better than to let a perfect stranger in, even if he's a major hottie. But this time, I have a lapse in judgment. I'm human. By the hour break, I'm a women in jeopardy, framed for something I didn't do, and in serious danger! Did the mysterious hunk set me up? Or will he rescue me from certain doom? Better yet, will I rescue myself? You'll just have to keep watching to find out, won't you?

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Life Is Short

“If we learn nothing else from this tragedy, we learn that life is short and there is no time for hate.” — Sandy Dahl, wife of Flight 93 pilot Jason Dahl

Saturday, September 10, 2016

There She Is...

There she is, Miss Neurotica There she is, your schlemiel The dream of a million girls 
who are more than flitty 
can come true in Neurotic City For she may turn out to be 
The Queen of Instability There she is, Miss Neurotica
There she is, your schlemiel With so many worries she took 
the town by storm
With her all-Dramatican 
face and form And there she is Kvetching on air, she is Sickest of the sick, she is There she is - Miss Neurotica

Friday, September 9, 2016

Next Question

Q: Just one?

A: Sure. Fine. Whatever.

Q: What are you waiting for?

A: Something wonderful.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

The Secret of Getting Older

A while back, when my sweet daddy turned 90, I begged him to tell me the secret of getting older. As usual, his answer was short and demanded a rim shot. The secret of getting older? "Keep having birthdays." I don't know about you, because you never call, you never write, but I think his wise strategy makes total sense, until the birthdays run out, and wherever you go, there you are. Still, the accumulation of birthday candles is just one component. Some make it to 90 and beyond, some don't. Why?

Yesterday, I decided to pursue the topic of aging with the gorgeous Twila, one of my mother's dearest friends. They met for lunch, regularly -- one time, both adorned in shocking hot pink outfits. And it wasn't planned. When the waiter asked if they'd like to order a Pink Lady, they got hysterical. They loved to laugh together, and ever since my sweet mommy went off to the Big Beauty Shop in the sky 17 years ago, Twila and I have been celebrating our birthdays and laughing our butts off. It's important to note that I still have a sizable butt while Twila's is practically non-existent, so clearly, we're not related, although given her penchant for brutal honesty, I could've sworn there was a genetic connection. Anyway, this birthday marks a big one for Twila, but I know she'd take me out of her will if I revealed which big one. Oh, wait, I'm not in her will. Let's just say she looks a lot younger than she really is, and after all these wonderful lunches we've shared, I finally asked, "What's the secret of getting older?" Without missing a beat, Twila said, "Lie."

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

It's Amicable

Hiddleswift is over. 

"It was an amicable split," a source told SJG News Service. To which the SJG replied, testily, "Amicable, schmamicable. When is a breakup, celebrity or otherwise, ever amicable? Give me an example. Just one. Go as far back as prehistoric times. I'm waiting. You can't come up with one, can you? Why? I'll tell you why. Because amicable is a made-up thing, a PR spin. The very nature of a breakup is the opposite of amicable. If things were so amicable, there'd be no breakup." The SJG admitted she was feeling emotional about Taylor Swift and Tom Hiddleston calling it off after only three months. "They looked so cute together," she said, between sobs. "I mean, so long and lean and elegant. And he liked to dance. When you find a guy who likes to dance, you don't walk away from that. You hang on for dear life." The source told the SJG to calm down, she was embarrassing herself, to which she replied, "When has that every stopped me before? I wanted Hiddleswift to work, I wanted it more than anything, but the truth is, the nickname doesn't really roll off the tongue, not like Shohub. (SJG & hubby). Still, I'm entitled to feel distraught at least for another few hours. Then I'll let it go. Why? I'll tell you why. Because this guy I met in 8th grade tells me I need to let things go. Of course, he hasn't specified which things I need to let go of, but I'm assuming the dissolution of Hiddleswift Inc. would meet his requirements." 

Oh, how we danced on that night at the Met

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Where Did I Go Right?

"Guess who made yummy chicken?"
This is the kind of trick question I relish.
"Who! Who?" I texted the youngest, 99 percent certain that the maker of the chicken couldn't possibly be the asker of the question, 'cuz, come on, when's the last time he made chicken? I don't know about you, but I'm drawing a blank.
"Me me me me," he texted back.
Well, spank my tush and call me Shlomo, I was wrong and it felt so right.
Next came the recipe: "Salt and pepper and olive oil."
"Nice! Love that you're cooking."
"It was very tasty."
When I told hubby that his youngest son had performed a culinary miracle, most likely because his older brother/roomie refused to get off the couch, he wanted to know one thing:
"Did he clean up?"
Which made me think of this moment from "Now, Voyager":
"Oh, Jerry, don't let's ask for the moon, we have the stars." 

But I kept that to myself. Instead, I said this:
"I'm not asking him that."

Monday, September 5, 2016

The SJG Fall Collection

Michael Kors, co-creative maven 

She's helped women dress for the Jewish Holidays: "Comfortable shoes are a must!" Now, she'll be helping them dress for everyday errands. According to Women's Wear Daily, the Short Jewish Gal of Sherman Oaks is teaming up with Michael Kors to create a line of apparel. The Short Jewish Gal Collection, available in stores this fall, will be geared to short fashion-forward middle-agers and will feature magically slimming sportswear, denim and activewear inspired by the SJG's personal style - if you can call it that. "It's youngish, playful, flattering like you can't believe, and stain-resistant. I can't be the only one out there who tends to spill on myself." Knit tops, hoodies, pullovers, striped knits (vertical only), T-shirts with clever sayings ("If it's not one thing, it's your mother"), drawstring pants, footwear with arch support and nice warm outerwear will all be part of the SJG Collection, with both the Short Jewish Gal and and Michael Kors serving as co-creative mavens for the line.
”I'm excited to be working with the Short Jewish Gal," Michael Kors told WWD.  "She brings a semi-fashionable, pseudo-hip vibe that defines an untapped market: today's boomers who never made it to 5'2, bless their hearts, but still want to look chic waiting in line at the market. This is my first venture into the world of the Rapidly Aging Petite Gal. I'm thrilled.”
  The SJG echoed Kors' excitement.  "I'd like to inspire other short women, Jew, non-Jew, what's the diff, to express their personal dysfunctions and creativity through designer fashion, and I use the term loosely.” This marks the first time the Short Jewish Gal is collaborating with Michael Kors, and she hopes it won't be her last. "I'd really like to score one of his high-end handbags."

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Skip It

(Sherman Oaks) American blogger/long-distance kvetcher the Short Jewish Gal is only a few blocks from completing her arduous journey down Ventura Boulevard, hoping to become the first person to skip like Bugs Bunny from Sherman Oaks to Studio City without stopping for a latte, a smoothie, a pedicure, a cute top, a haircut or a quick nosh. The SJG has attempted her happy dance from Van Nuys Boulevard to Laurel Canyon during 15 previous Labor Day weekends, but never made it past Art's Deli. "The smell of a fresh onion bagel was too hard to resist. This time, I'm leaving the cash at home, and the only credit card on my personage will have expired two weeks ago," she said, right before beginning her anti-shop-a-thon. "Not everyone has the intestinal fortitude to pass Lululemon, Banana Republic or M. Fredric, especially on Labor Day weekend, when everything is on sale. I'm going to have to dig down deep and find some self-control. I could really use a new workout bra."

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Ba-Bye, Summer!

Dear SJG,
Apparently summer is kaput. I turn to you, O kvetchy one, with a question of enormous import. Where the hell did summer go and how can I get it back?
Thank you,
Summarily Bummed

Dear Summarily Bummed,
Technically speaking, you asked two questions rolled into one, which is very sneaky of you, not to mention rude, especially this early in the a.m. To pose two questions in one is to drain the SJG brain of its awesomeness, but fine, whatever, I'll allow it. Why? I'll tell you why. Because I'm a giver. Let me address the first part of your dual question. Where the hell did summer go? Summer went ba-bye, while you were semi-busy living your humdrum life. God willing your A/C was working. How can you get summer back? You can't. You must wait impatiently till summer rolls around next June, and in the meantime, dwell on the things you can control, like the volume on the TV and the color of your nail polish.
You're Welcome,

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Do Your Chores

Wipe that grin off your face, missy!
Every time I go to the movies, I hearken * back (* first time usage of hearken) to my youth, when I paid $2.50 for a matinee at the Fox or Bruin in Westwood. And that $2.50 wasn't just spare change, people. It wasn't part of my vast reserve of gelt. It was hard-earned cash, the accumulation of various ridiculous chores and my weekly allowance. My parents made me work for my keep. They had me emptying the dishwasher, which I hated then and still do. I thought after I'd broken a few of their expensive bar glasses -- intentionally?  how dare you! -- that they'd get the message that this wasn't a good chore for the budding SJG. They could've fired me at any point. But noooo, they had me emptying the dishwasher till I moved out. The horror of it all.  How I suffered! 

And that wasn't all they made me do. There was more. Much more. They had me folding laundry, which I hated then and still do. I was lousy at folding then. I'm lousy at folding now. I start off with the best intentions, and then I just say, "Oh eff it!  I don't care." They could've fired me for insubordination and sub-par laundry service.  But nooooo, they kept me on, indefinitely. And that wasn't all they made me do.  They had me washing the patio furniture. You heard me. The cushions were just going to get dirty again. I stunk at washing outdoor furniture then. I stink at it now.  Scrubbing bird crap off cushions -- can you say undignified! Bird crap! Honestly. 

These people I lived with really put me to work. Set the table. Clear the dishes. Make the bed. "Why are you making me do this?" I'd whine on a weekly basis. "What have I done?" My dad would then deliver a lengthy lecture about surviving the Depression and walking three miles in the snow and how chores built character. "I don't need character!" I'd say, and storm out of the room, sobbing and slamming doors.  Overdoing it just a tad. I always did have a flare for the dramatic. 

The benefactors of my traumatic chore-centric childhood: my sons, who never got paid a dime for helping around house. Which may explain why they never helped around the house. I didn't want to burden them with all that character-building nonsense. Who needs character when you've got Play Station?