Monday, July 31, 2006

A New York Minute

Best Shopping: Kirna Zabete. The most beautiful boutique in NYC by far.
Best Innovative Restaurant: WD-50 A Chef that treats his trade like a science; an incredibly educated and helpful staff. Oh yeah, and the food is great, the drinks even better.
Most Overated Restaurant: Cipriani Downtown. Beautiful people: yes (usually during lunch or a good night, but not always); Beautiful food: no way. Barely passable at best.
Best Hotel Deal: Seduction in Soho at Soho Grand. Discounted rooms including breakfast in your room, drink tickets, chocolates and a champagne toast, plus discounts at local boutiques (including 20% off at What Comes Around Goes Around!).
Best Hotel Soap: Malin + Goetz Peppermint Soap. Minty tootsies after a day of hard shopping is simply fantastic.
Most Confusing Branding: Calypso. There's Calypso, Calypso Enfant, Calypso Home, and a Calypso Outlet all within 10 feet of each other. And the first three have sale sections that have the same things as the outlet. And not much was wearable at any of it. They need a new team. Desperately.
Most Overated Activity: Vintage shopping in Nolita. Scouring through severly scoured racks is tiring. And mostly fruitless. Although Resurrection is still fun.
Best Husband: Mine.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

The Best Shopping Site EVER

..and that's not a title I toss around lightly.

My brilliant fashionista friend M forwarded a site to me today that seemed pretty interesting: Shop It To Me.

And here is my thoughtful analysis on my findings:

Holy Crap.

Nutshell version: you go, you check off what designers you like and your sizes (top, bottom, tootsies--and you can choose multiples in each). Then you check off when you want to hear from them. And then--KABLAAM!--your life changes in an instant.

I received an email showing every item on sale from my chosen designers in my size from Nordstrom, Smart Bargains, eLuxury, Yoox, Bluefly and Saks. And quicker than you can say "Tory Burch Garanimals," I scored a pair of black Prada heels for $143.

And they're going to do this for me every Tuesday and Friday. I think I love these people more than Ahmet Zappa.

No more having to sift through 800 pages of Hype wallets just to see what's new on Bluefly. No more finding the perfect shirt at eLuxury just to find out that it's not in your size. Just no more searching for anything ever. The Homer Simpson lazy person in me just cracked open a beer and rubbed his belly (Yum...Praadaa).

My husband should be afraid. Very afraid.

Okay, my favorite doyennes, I'm off to a romantic weekend with my man in NYC--have a great weekend! And for the love, Talking Budgie is just $90 away from her goal--please go and donate $10--and you could win some fantastic beauty loot!!!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The Write Sisters

Okay, before you find out about this FABULOUS notecard, did you donate yet to Talking Budgie's AIDS Marathon? Did you? Because you could win lots of amazing stuff! We now resume with our regular blog...

My sister and I* just wrote an article for a Miami magazine about our favorite stationers. R. Nichols, of course, is at the veryveryvery top of the list. Because he's one of the best men I've ever met**, and on top of that, is perhaps the best stationer of all time.

We had a few others, that I thought I'd share as well:

Mrs. John L. Strong: Browsing the Mrs. John L. Strong department at Barneys New York is a favorite pasttime. The elephant moving cards announced my sister's entrée into Miami; her current obsession is the Seven Deadly Sins card set.

Set Editions: Their assorted card box features cards appropriate for birthdays and holidays (and even an apology card!); the perfect box for those with lots of heartfelt thoughts but limited time to find the right card.

Allie Munroe: Introduced to my sister by a boyfriend; the boy is long gone, but the stationery remains. Fabulous birth announcements as well as custom invites.

DL and Company: Their skull notecards are flying off the shelves at Barneys. And I was more than a little obsessed since they sold out of my Stubbs Jollys. I haven't found the PERFECT use for them yet, although I'm sending one out today as thanks for a spa day.

Now off to Project Runway!

*And by "my sister and I," I mean the same thing that I've meant every time I've used that phrase since birth: her idea, with me doing all of the work. But this arrangement has worked well for us, so I can't really complain: she's good in her role as the queen, me as the worker bee.

** 3: 1.) My husband, of course. 2.) Ahmet Zappa. He is not only hot but could be one of the funniest people I have ever met. Ever. I was CRUSHED when he married Selma Blair. 3.) R. Nichols (although not necessarily in that order!).

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Cobbled Choo Not Included

I plan events. Which means I go to a lot of events. Which means that I've got a fair amount of swag lying around. Time to put some of it to good use...

So, my sweet doyennes, it's time to ante up.

We have a blogger that's working her toes off for a good cause and needs our help. Eliza of Talking Budgie is training for the Whitman-Walker AIDS Marathon. She needs to raise another 500 beans by August 1. And I'm willing to bribe you to help her get there.

If she doesn't raise it, she won't be able to participate, and all of her hard work (and good blogging) will have been a wasted effort. So very not cool.

So here's the deal: for every $10 you contribute to her campaign between now and August 1 you will receive you one entry to win:
First prize: a HUGE cosmetic/skincare stash: Full size products from Vincent Longo (Misty Blossom Duo Blush), MAC (Skinshimmer), Lush (Snow Fairy Shower Gel), Chantecaille (Retinol Intense), Phyllis George (Calm & Cool Toner), Escada (Eau de Parfum), Ralph (Romance), Back to Basics (Coconut mango shower gel), and Bibo lipstick in Clever (a fabulous shade of red) AND a box of eight assorted R. Nichols notecards. All told, about $275 worth of loot!

Second prize: a fabulous haircare stash from one of my favorites, Graham Webb, all full size bottles: Brit Style Hairspray, Brit Style Mousse, Vivid Color Shampoo, Vivid Color Conditioner and Vivid Color Shine Serum. Total loot value: $60

Third prize: the BabsieD sample bag, filled with about 30 cosmetic samples (including Laura Mercier, La Mer and lots more), plus an R. Nichols goodie bag (4 notecards) and a Tory Burch cosmetic bag (worth $35!).

2 Runners Up: a Bibo Clever Lipstick (it's the exact shade of red from Lipstick Jungle--'tis fabulous).

Winners will be chosen at random; I'll post them August 2, and you can email me your shipping info.

Fifty people donating $10 each will get her there (or 25 donating $20!). We've all been in this boat--raising money the best that we can, and just in need of a little help. So go. Every little bit will help, and will help an amazing cause.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Theory Lite and Why Nicolas Ghesquiere Is My Prozac

My new job starts on Monday and therefore, it was deemed (by me) that a new outfit was in order.* Intermix** doesn't have a whole lot of fall stuff in yet, I've already scoured the Co-Op, and a Theory suit from a recent NM catalog (skinny pant, silver toggle closure on the jacket) caught my eye. So during the afternoon's rainy spell, I headed out.

15 Theory items (plus a few DVFs and Torys) in the dressing room; 15 times I thought to myself, "So not original. And so overpriced." I tried on a shirt with ruched sides, which was cute, but so not worth $195. Then I thought "waitaminute...I know where I can get this stuff..." and I headed 5 doors down to Ann Taylor.

I'm kind of anti-AT, as a lot of people tend to wear it head to toe, and you can spot it a mile away. But I found an near exact replica of a Theory outfit I tried on, albeit a little lower on the quality side, but for $140 as opposed to $400.

I think the Theory designers moonlight at AT--kind of like when Marc Jacobs designs for himself, LV and his bridge line. But without the killer ad campaign. And Sofia Coppola.

So back to my genius purchase: the other upside (besides huge savings) is that is certainly going to help me with the other VERY BAD thing I did today...

I put myself on my very first wait list.

For a bag.

By Balenciaga.

(in black).

I typically allow myself one fabulous item per season, although this is pushing it. It was going to be my Henry Beguelins, but it looks like they're nowhere to be found--the HB stores only carry them in brown (Relish had them in black alligator-embossed, just not in my size), and if they're not the black gator ones (which makes them look completely badass), I just don't think they're worth the investment.

(They're at the top. Agree?)

So back to my bag. Justification (as I can, in fact, justify just about anything given enough time and/or desperation):
1.) it's frigging FABULOUS.
2.) It's a dressy bag which I'm pretty sure I'll be able to use for the rest of my life.
3.) It has a big B on it--it's as if it was destiny.
4.) Daphne, my saleswoman at Balenciaga in NYC, is GREAT. I had to call HB 4 times just to get them to email me a picture of the shoes, whereas Daphne could not have been more perfect.
5.) See depression asterisk below. Sometimes you just need a little something to get you over the hump. And this was a pretty humpy hump (and not in a good way).

I haven't quite broken it to my husband yet that I'm at the very top of the waitlist, which means it's probably going to be a go.

So, my love, if you're reading this, I love you. And that color looks great on you. It just couldn't make your eyes any bluer. And I was thinking, would you like me to make breakfast tomorrow? And I told you that I love you, yes?

Daphne at Balenciaga, 542 West 22nd Street, NYC; 212.206.0872

*I've also been through a fairly depressive patch lately--I think because of leaving my job after so long, which is just weird, plus the stress of starting a new one, and, more than anything else, I've just had some rough patches ever since I had my boy--kind of like an ongoing post-partum cycle. Tom Cruise knows nothing of which he speaks, that crazy rat bastard. Anyway, this one was not a very fun one. So if I haven't spoken to you in a few weeks, I'm sorry--I'm coming out now.

**God bless their discount card, which expires in September--talk about a depressive spell if I don't get renewed!!!

Where's Melanie?

Um, so I guess this explains why Melanie disappeared from Sprout this week...

So long, Miss Melanie! My son will miss you! (Good riddance to that freaky star, however...)

Friday, July 21, 2006

Fresh Chanel Cobbler

A good Chanel cobbler blows any old fruit cobbler out the window in my book. Even in summer.

My Chanel birks are good as new. My Barbara Buis: beauty restored. And my Choos are cheerful once again.

Willie's Shoe Repair in the Galaxie Dry Cleaners in Bethesda did an AMAZING job. I've had some horrible dry cleaner and cobbler experiences*, and this was a refreshing experience.

The dry cleaner is staffed completely with older nice women who all look like someone's grandma. And they even unwrapped the buttons on my sweaters post-cleaning.

The cobbler went above and beyond, cleaning up some pretty horrible heels, and basically making three pairs of borderline unwearable shoes worthy of a good pedicure once again. They're still working on replacing a broken heel on a pair of Jimmy Choo boots--no easy procedure--so the verdict is still out on that one, but so far, so fabulous.

Willie's Shoe Repair, at Galaxie Cleaners II, 465 Elm Street, Bethesda; 301.654.9400
Additional locations at Georgetown Square Shopping Center and 9 Wisconsin Circle, Chevy Chase

*I had an event where we borrowed clothes for the models from a boutique, and they needed to be returned with tags on, but one outfit needed to be dry cleaned; I was told that the tags were no problem. When I picked up the outfit, the tags were destroyed. I was told "You told us to leave the tags on, not to take care of them. I was just doing what you asked." Seriously, do you think you should maybe get another job besides one that requires a modicum of customer service? So if you're ever in Chantilly, VA and are in need of dry cleaning services, don't go to the one in the Metrotech Drive Shopping Center.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Insert Witty Portuguese Caption Right About...Here.

I had some overdue errands to run today in the Wheaton area, and stopped by one of my favorite places: Brazilian Market.

Last fall, I did an event where I needed to send Brazilian chocolates with the press kits (why is chocolate SO much better everywhere else? Discuss amongst yourselves). I had no idea where to look--I searched online and came up chocolateless; I called every Brazilian I knew (okay, that equals about 2), but they were no help. I was getting a little frantic, and grabbed the phone book, grumbling all the while,

"Grumblegrumblegrumble where in the HELL am I going to find a Brazilian mark.."


So off I went.

It's kind of a dive, although it's in a fairly new building. But it's like being in a different country (okay, duh). Everyone in there, staff, customers, everyone, is from Brazil. Totally friendly, very laid back (your order could take ten minutes to ring up--just get over it). But it's worth it just to pick up some great coffee, cookies, and pao de queijo (to say nothing of the chocolate). Yum.

Closure: the chocolates were a hit, the event a success. Except the person in charge had just discovered Splenda, thought it was the greatest substance known to man, and insisted we use it for the Caiphirinas. Don't ever try it. Ever.

Brazilian Market, 11425 Grand Avenue, Wheaton; 301.942.8412

Monday, July 17, 2006

Freaky Puppet Leaves Rehab, Finds New Lease on Life as PBS Kids Sprout Host

Not a fashionable post at all, my friends, but it simply must be said.

It's safe to say there's a pretty good chance you're in one of the following camps:

#1) Have no children, not sure if you ever will. Easily judge all parents and their childrearing skills. Think most, if not all, children are rather intolerable.

#2) Have no children but would definitely like to, or you own a very, very small child. Easily judge all parents and their childrearing skills, but are more specific, eg., "When I have a child, I'm going to make sure he/she is bilingual: it's important to do that from birth, you know. And he/she will NEVER eat sugar, will only eat organic food, and, most importantly, will NEVER, EVER watch television."*

#3) Have children--who can recite the entire lineup of Sprout Television and/or Noggin. Easily and still judge all others and their parenting skills.

#4) Have children, live by the creed in #2 above. Note to you: you are absolutely no fun to be around. Just an fyi.

I think we all start out at #1 and work our way down the list, each at our own pace. I'm a precarious resident at #3. I realize that Sprout/Noggin (which, for the uninitiated, are fairly commercial-less television channels programmed for the wee tots--age 2 and under, the first programmed by PBS, the second by Nickelodeon) are evil, as basically they're just holding pens to warm up your kids so that when they outgrow this programing, television will be a firm part of their agenda and they can be marketed to on regular television. Pure, unadulterated evil, I say.

But it buys me a half hour here and there. And my boy digs it. So I'm complicit in this cycle of brainsucking. Call me a horrible parent, but Babsie's La Mer isn't going to warm properly to release the key ingredients of the magic broth all by itself. It takes time, people. 'Bout a round of Max and Ruby and Thomas the Tank Engine, to be exact.

However, I may now have to draw the line. Because this heinous Star creature is freaking me out.

Star is the new "co-host" of the Good Night Show on PBS Sprout (see photo above). And he brings evil to a whole new level.

First of all, people talking to puppets just isn't right (except on Sesame Street, where they somehow pull it off). Like when they bring out a puppet (or worse, an animated character) to present at an awards show alongside an actual person and there's that weird "Where the hell do I look?" look from the person combined with bad teleprompter reading because it's awkward because they're not talking to a person. It's a damn puppet. It's uncomfortable for everyone, except maybe the puppet.

So go on, take a good hard look at him. Maybe they were trying to balance out Melanie (the other host)'s cuteness with a little yin and yang. If so, they nailed it.

First, the fur: he appears to be made out of a cheap plush that indents easily. So he always looks like he has some kind of huge scar running across his face--let's go ahead and attribute that to a gang fight gone awry. Then, they embroidered these little stars across his cheeks, which make him look like he's got some really deep pock marks--souveneirs of the rough years before he found rehab, Jesus, and the wonders of public television. Oh, and he doesn't blink, which makes him look downright menacing, so his innocuous script, eg., "What a fun craft, Melanie!", becomes just frightening.

Next, he's got a voice that's both high AND raspy. A cross between Lindsay and Chucky, with that Snuggle teddy bear thrown in for good measure. Like he had a really girlie voice, but after twenty years at 2 packs a day, he ended up at that particular octave.

The left and right points of his star each end with hands. But they're man-size hands (and the points have bulky "shoulders," so he looks like he's been spending a bit too much time at the gym. With Barry Bonds). So he's a midget little person little star, on 'roids. Twinkle twinkle buddy, I wonder how you got so damn creepy.

Then, the one thing you can't see here, and you may just have to tune in, drop out, and check it out yourself, is at the bottom of the star, in between the bottom left and right points, is what appears to be a pointy part of the hand that's steering this psychokiller monstrosity of a puppet jutting right out there. So, um, how do I say this...he looks like he's very happy to be there. Very happy.

So if you're residing in Camp #1, you may just want to stay there for a while until our friends at PBS can get this sorted out. Because, trust me, you'll need a half hour here and there, too.

*Or you'll be my friend A who actually pulled off rearing perfect, brillant, healthy-eating, non-television watching children--except her kids are tri-lingual: Russian, French and English. There may even be a touch of German or something thrown in. And she's not judgmental toward others at all. Damn my smart nice friends and their good karma.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Why, That's A Lovely Little Patch of Grass You've Got Over Here...

Not working is fantastic. I could totally do this for a living. I've always been convinced that I would be a fabulous doyenne: would be nice to the help, would give to charity, would find lots to do...but for now, my two week reprieve will suffice just fine.

I haven't posted in a bit; I needed a bit of a break with everything. Just a little time to let go of the old job and have a bit of quiet time before I jump into the new. And when you find yourself quoting other bloggers in conversation more than, say, thoughts from your own head, well, it's time to turn it off for a spell.

So here's a quick rundown. Be warned: you will be jealous...
Monday: Shopped for books to read over two-week vaca: went for serious(-esque) biography (Journals of Jack Kerouac) and pit of incredible vapidness (The First Assistant). Have started one, and it's a great read. Not commenting on which one, however. Hung with my brilliantly witty two-year old. He's a damn genius. Nice to see him other than while running out the door in the a.m. and putting him to bed (and nice to hear him say something other than "Byebye Mommy!" and "Mommy working!").

Tuesday: Obsessed over Stubbs Jollys. Ordered. Got word they're sold out. Searched high and low for them. No luck. So picture above will have to suffice. Next, read every magazine that I haven't been able to get to in months: The Economist, Harper's, Scientific American....okay, truth: W, Us, Vogue, Bazaar (Now those are some [ahem...] nice pictures of Lindsay Lohan in couture--it looked like she ran in, threw on these amazing outfits, stood for four shots, then ran out to her next party. A complete disservice to Balenciaga), Aspen, Hamptons, Avenue, plus the DC collective (DC, Cap File, DC Style, Wash Life, Washingtonian. Comparison post to happen one of these days).

Wednesday: Cleaned stuff. And enjoyed it. Epiphany: it's nice to have a kitchen floor that doesn't feel like the remains of a keg party. Brought all winter shoes to cobbler for reheeling. Most organized thing I've done in my entire life. Ever.

Thursday: Motorcycle movie premiere party at IndeBleu. Had a fabulous time. Two things of note: 1.) I of all people understand the importance of keeping sponsors happy, but Red Bull in a margarita is just not very good. 2.) Never thought it would ever happen, but there in the bathroom of IndeBleu, I discovered what simply has to be the ONLY Yankee Candle that doesn't smell like the perfect balance of cheap perfume, everyone else's grandmother and ass: Lemon Lavender. My only question is this: who was the person who went into that heinous store and smelled them one by one until they found the one candle that doesn't smell like the inside of a house in a Thomas Kincade painting?*

Friday: Barbecue with friends. Too drunk/lazy to barbecue, actually, so we ordered in. My son the self-appointed vegan ate chicken. And even uttered the words "More Chicken." Maybe not a big deal to you, but to those of us (me) who have had to fish every last speck of chicken out of chicken noodle soup (his favorite, sans the chicken) for the past year, it's cause for celebration.

Saturday:** husband whisked me away for a day of shopping in Georgetown and a night at the St. Regis. Five minutes from our house but a world away. Whilst shopping, I met a new love: Henry Beguelin. That is, his grommeted black textured leather Mary Janes at Relish. They were out of my size; I currently have 2 salespeople at their LA store calling everywhere to get me a pair. Determined. They're life changing, just trust me on this. Must have them for fall.

Another must-have: Barneys cashmere sweater dresses--in navy, black and tan (with and without turtleneck)--a STEAL for $165. They're flying off the shelves, so get 'em while you can at the Co-Op.

I can't believe I have one more week of this paradise, although it will fly, this I know. So I've got to do my best to appreciate every last moment.

*I had to visit both the Yankee Candle and Thomas Kinkade (yes, THE Painter of LightTM). websites for the purposes of this blog. I'm scarred, perhaps for life. But I did it just for you. Because you, my sweet, I love.

**Speaking of Saturday, I didn't get on the horn fast enough so Drive by Truckers sold out, but you can access their 9:30 Club concert here.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Bitterfish, Party of One...

....your table is ready. After almost eight years of a hellish commute, and months of trying to fill positions that are impossible to fill, I joined the ranks of the resigned. My last day is today; new job starts in 2 weeks (!).

New job: very exciting, very terrifying. It's very easy to be the big fish in a small pond. Bigger fish, bigger pond: not so much. And I've never taken a job that's a step up before (my typical m.o. is to get in, get the lay of the land, then work for a promotion. That's not the case here and I'm quite anxious about it).

Below is the press release (no, not a real one; yes, there's a press release: I'm in marketing--this is what we do for fun), written by my very good friend D. I've not been the same since she left and moved on to greener pastures.

There are a lot of jokes you won't get if you haven't been privy to my somewhat tortured existence over the past near decade, but one thing you will get is that my company is probably very happy that they are very sad to see me go....


Few Surprised By Move, Slated for Early July; Layoffs in HR Department Happen in Strange Coincidence With Behavioral Problem Paperwork Seeing An Immediate and Sharp Decline

THE TILLY, VA (June 23, 2006)—B, famed group marketer and New York Times best-selling author of “Implementing Goldmine: Why Am I The Only One?” and “How To Purge A Marketing Department In 60 Days” announced her exit from the yellow walls of ****, effective July 7.

The move, which closely resembled the prison escape by Tim Robbins in The Shawshank Redemption, came as a relief to those close to Ms. B. The organization had sucked the life and spirit out of her many times before, but the 2006 spirit-sucking was unprecedented in its scope. Some say she never was the same after an unnamed friend and colleague forced her to drop trou’ in her office to prove that Brazil can sometimes be completely rainforest-free.* Others, however, simply point to that moment as part of a pattern of Ms. B’s propensity to flash those within her department, especially during the early, fun days of her career.

Company Hottie **** phoned from Atlanta, GA to comment on her departure, “Wow. The smart-ass index in the ’Tilly is going to drop by at least 75%. ”

B began her rise within the ranks of **** in a rathole building in Sterling, VA, where she was one of the earliest members of X.E.N., the **** event committee [basically, the only time it was really fun]. She also managed the **** portfolio during its profitable years (1999-2000). As a director, she supervised two of her nemeses, [insert name of heinous woman who wanted to hunt me down and kill me. She was quite angry] and [lazylazylazy girl with a bad attitude whom it was a pleasure to fire]. She received her first ass kicking, by [hellacious event that made me work 7 days a week for months], in late 2001.

With only a few witnesses looking on, none of which are still employed by **** as its retention rate has dropped to 4%, the scrawny-legged B received a second ass kicking at the **** Summer 2002 Picnic Jousting Challenge, by D “Farm Legs” ***** [author of this release. She KICKED my ass].

Undoubtedly wearing the only Manolo Blahniks that will ever step foot within any of the four floors of 11111 **** Parkway, B will leave behind many D heads taped to the yellow walls [I was a fan of the vandalism] as well as a human resources file packed with reports of inappropriate language and behavior.

Ms. B is best known for her now infamous “No More Assholes” meeting. In this closed-door session, she forced a staff of eight to raise their right hands and swear to an original B drawing of an ass that they would, in fact, stop being asses. She was hauled into h.r. approximately six minutes later, but no charges were ever filed. The team did, incidentally, stop acting like asses.

Other memorable moments include: bunking in numerous cities with famed **** Halloween Costume Contest Winner, D [again, the author; she was quite proud of her award] ; shaking her boobies and spanking herself in full view of 300 attendees after breaking into a balcony while wasted at a **** conference event; hiring a marketing manager solely on her ability to identify a pair of shoes as vintage Chanel; and holding the company-wide record of crying 8 times out of 8 meetings with her one-time direct supervisor, Company CEO **** [It was in the middle of an $850m acquisition. Oh, hell, no excuses. I cried like a little girl because my job was hard. Boo hoo. Hopefully I've grown up since then].

Anticipating the move, ****, vice president of innumerable vice presidents, was seen crouching and drooling outside Ms. B’s office like a hungry tiger eyeing fresh piece of meat, while mumbling seven-syllable words indecipherable without a dictionary and an inordinately large ego. [has a plan for company wide domination].

Mail service afficionado and friend, T heard the news and exclaimed, “Oh my God…I can’t believe B’s leaving!” He then tearfully added, “But she will live on in many seed lists. I’ll make sure of it.” [ASAP Mailing in Alexandria kicks ass. Hire them.]

M was also reached for comment, but none of the AP reporters were able to paraphrase his many, many remarks. [salesperson for ASAP mailing. Love him, but the man never stops talking].

For more information on B’s departure, please contact her poolside the week of July 10, and at her new position two weeks thereafter. Details will be released shortly.
*Here's how that convo went down:
D: How'd that lunchtime wax work out?
Me (eyes bugged out of my head): Um...okay.
D: What does that mean?
Me: You know how there are rainforests in Brazil? Well, apparently sometimes, there aren't.
D: Um..I'm going to need to see that. Impossible.
Me: No way.
D: Yes.
Me: No.
D: Yes.
Me: Oh, alright goddammit....
Office appropriateness: never really my strong point.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

3 Cheers for 3 Sales

I know everyone and their mother is having a summer sale right now (when all I want is fall stuff*). But 2/3 of the below aren't summer leftovers, so you simply must go:
1.) MacKenzie-Childs Christmas in July Sale. Their Tea Biscuit Bell is even cuter in person, and it's only $10! It makes the best hostess gift, tied only with M | Luxe almond soaps in the fabulous packaging from Neiman Marcus. And anything from Jo Malone.
2.) R. Nichols has extended his 30% off stationery sale until Saturday, July 8, if you use the code word "Surprise." I love R. Nichols. Love him. (shown here: Paris Lime).
3.) Pret-A-Porter has some great things on sale--including my Chloe babydoll dress (in both shirt and dress form). Their search engine could be improved (how about a "Show All" button, people?), but there are great deals to be had. (Thanks M for the heads up!).

*Note to God/Godlike Being: Please let all of the fall stuff I just ordered from the Anthropologie catalog make me look like a supermodel. I know it never has before; in fact, I've looked fairly ridiculous in much of it, but this one time, I beg of you, make it all fit perfectly. Oh, and can you make the person in the office next door stop with the weird crying/grunting noise she's making? It's freaking me out. Thanks.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Recipes: Real and Vapid

I received this fortune with our Chinese takeout last night. How sweet. And strangely appropriate (for once, it's a fortune that could apply to me without having to add "in bed."). And happiness is just so utterly delightful, no?

However, there are times when rainbows and kittens be damned, you're just miserable. And for those situations, I offer the following:

Recipe for Cosmetic Fake Happiness
-2 Shots of Botox for forehead and mid-brow crease to mask bitter frustration
-Sisley Botanical Concealer for under eyes and as shadow base to mask lack of sleep
-Benefit Eye Bright for corners of eyes to hide hangover
-Chantecaille Future Skin foundation for dewy "I'm happy" glow
-Nars Orgasm blush to project "I'm alive and happy to be here!"
-Perfect mascara (has this been invented yet?)*
-Lipcolor of choice

Combine above ingredients. Keep grumbling and bitch slapping to a minimum. Fool all.

And since we're on the subject of fortunes, here is a recipe for the best shower favors ever--good for both bridal and baby. You'll look like a domestic genius, when really, each batch takes about 5 minutes. Recipe is from Richard Simmons' Sweetie Pie cookbook, which, I swear, is a great dessert resource:

Fortune Cookies
(Recipe makes 24 cookies; I've tripled the recipe without a problem).
-3 tablespoons light brown sugar
-1/4 cup granulated sugar
-2 large egg whites
-2 tablespoons canola oil
-1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
-1/4 teaspoon almond extract
-2 drops yellow food coloring (optional--I prefer without)
-1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
-Nonstick vegetable-oil cooking spray
-24 fortunes (you can google cute little baby/bridal sayings, or you can just go smartass, which is my personal preference: "There is babysitting in your future. You will be brilliant at the task"; "She who looks with disdain at crying babies on airplanes will get her ass kicked by karma", etc.)
-2 Muffin pans
-Chinese takeout boxes (available at the Container Store for about 79 cents each); the small ones each hold about 3 cookies

1.) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, press the brown sugar with the back of a spoon to rid it of lumps. Add granulated sugar, egg whites, oil, both extracts and food coloring; whisk until blended. Sift in flour until smooth. Let batter stand for 20 minutes.
2.) Lightly coat baking sheet with cooking spray. Spoon 1 measuring tablespoon of batter onto baking sheet, then spread into a 3-inch circle with even thickness (this takes a little practice, as they can burn if too thin or be spongy if too thick). Repeat until tray is full (usually 6). Keep muffin pan nearby.
3.) Bake for about 5 minutes until they're golden around the edges. Loosen cookies immediately with a spatula (you can put a little spray on that too to help). Remove one cookie, then throw the rest back in the oven (until you get the hang of it, as they moment they're cool, they can't be shaped). Flip the one cookie over, put the fortune in the center, fold coookie in half over the fortune, then fold again, bending it to form a fortune cookie shape. Place it in the muffin pan to hold its shape until it's cool. Repeat with the next one.
4.) Let the baking sheet cool for a minute, then repeat until done.
5.) If you want to really show off, you can use pliers to unhook the handles, bead them with Darice clear beads, then reattach. You can also tie the boxes with grosgrain ribbons. Trés impressive.

Off to BBQ: Happy Fourth!

*Not to disrespect the dead, because he really was a cosmetic mastermind, but I finally forked over for Kevyn Aucoin's mascara. Not impressed. If you so much as blink for the first two minutes, you get a huge smudge which is impossible to remove. Everyone I know that's headed over to Erwin for fake lashes has looked amazing. I think that's my next procedural move.


In a previous post, I said the following:

"The regular Ralph Lauren towels are crap."

I'm here to amend that statement.

Eleven years ago, we received a set of RL towels as a gift. They lasted about 8 years. They were fabulous.

Three years ago, we bought a set of RL towels. They lasted about a year. They totally fell apart--the seams came undone, they stayed soft for about a month. Very disappointed.

One year ago, we received a set of RL towels as a gift. They are fabulous. They are still soft, the seams are fine, we use them all the time.

So when I made the statement above, you can imagine the set I was envisioning. Not, say, the fabulously fabulous set that my best friend gave me because she is perhaps the most considerate and best gift giver in the world. For example.

Perhaps the better statement would have been "Ralph Lauren's towels are inconsistent, and you may receive a crap set. Or maybe not. They may, in fact, be great."

And that, my friends, is all I've got to say about that.