March 01, 2007

Lisa: Thank you?

I never know what people are going to say to me at the information desk. I think some people don't know what a librarian is, while other people are just strange. I try not to take it personally.

"Gosh, you're so bright--why do you work at the library?"

"So are you all volunteers?"

"Gee, you'd make such a great secretary. Maybe I'll offer you a job!"

"You have a master's degree? Really? Seriously? So...did you always know you wanted to be a librarian?" (No. Actually, I got my undergraduate degree in music.) "What do you play?" (The flute.) "Oh. I...don't play the flute."

"You're the smartest girl in the world. And not only that, you're pretty good lookin'! I can say that because I'm old, so it's not a threat."

"Did you know your thyroid gland is enlarged?"

"Can I ask your advice? Do you think half a stick of dynamite would be enough to blow up this whole library?"

Edited because I just had to add one more from today:
"You always look so nice when I come in here. I prefer brunettes with white shirts and black skirts, and you always look very nice."

March 02, 2007

Lisa: street smarts

Q: When is a good time to take my car to the dealership downtown for an oil change that is 3000 miles overdue?

A: 7:00 am, before the streets are plowed, during a blizzard.

Bonus points: Remind the service guy that a part needs to get installed. When he asks you what part, tell him you have no idea. Watch while he looks up the record of your last visit, where someone painstakingly typed in all caps, "CUSTOMER STATES SHE HIT SOMETHING VERY HARD, AND NOW THERE IS SOMETHING DANGLING DOWN BY THE TIRE. SHE SUGGESTS JUST TRIMMING THAT PART OFF BECAUSE MAYBE IT ISN'T IMPORTANT."

March 06, 2007

Lisa: well-heeled

Sometimes people question why I spend time or money on 'unneccessary' grooming procedures. Other people ask, "how can you stand to walk in those things" or, "why are you always all dressed up?"


Excellent grooming goes a surprisingly long way to make up for a lack of natural beauty. Our friend Jennifer Aniston can testify to that. "Excellent grooming" means a regular regime of waxing or shaving, moisturizing, finger- and toenail care, hair upkeep (cut and/or color), daily hairstyling and makeup application, and making sure that whatever clothes you put on constitute an "outfit." You don't have to spend a lot of money on any of it, and it shouldn't be overdone (if all the makeup you need is lipgloss and mascara, great), but it has to be done. I've talked before about showing respect for your body by taking care of it, and I hold to that, but I think for me it's mostly about being prettier.

Why skirts and heels? Well, quite simply, I think the Fifties look of heels and a skirt with a nipped-in waist is just the most flattering for a traditional female figure. Plus it's easier to pull off a classy, old-school glamour thing than to follow trends--especially when you're no longer 16 years old, over 98 lbs, or don't maintain the figure of an 11-year-old boy.

Heels look feminine and graceful. They make your legs look longer and more shapely, and change the contour of your butt for the better. Plus, you look like you're putting just THAT much more effort into looking nice.

Like all of you, I wear pants when the activity calls for it. However, for a woman with hips, a skirt is more flattering than a pair of pants EVERY TIME. And contrary to popular argument, I find that skirts are often more comfortable than pants, due to the lack of restriction around the lady bits.

Yes, you have to be slightly more conscious of your body when you're wearing heels and a skirt. Wearing a skirt forces you to be ladylike--keep your knees together or risk exposing yourself a la Britney. THIS IS A GOOD THING. What's so bad about comporting yourself like a lady? Sitting with your legs wide apart in jeans still looks vulgar, even if your panties aren't technically visible. Walking in heels, feeling a skirt brushing against your legs--it makes you feel your femininity. Own it.

I think I dress like a 50s TV housewife for another reason. Even though I consider myself a feminist, deep down I still think I should do (or at least be able to do) everything June Cleaver did. But...I don't really cook much. I'm not the best housekeeper. I'm not always sweet and kind and unruffled, waiting, martini in hand, for my husband to get home from work.

But I CAN look the part. I can be the best at walking in with a skirt and heels, a smart-looking coat, and a pretty bag. And you know what? We can eat take-out. We can hire someone to clean our house. But it's still frowned upon to pay someone to be sexy for you. So...I figure I picked the most practical of the three.

March 09, 2007

Lisa: Tool of the Week

Over the last 15 years or so, I've tried a lot of mascaras. Luckily, I wasn't makeup-age during the era of the colored lashes, but I've tried every tube my mom ever bought (Clinique, Arbonne, and various other high end stuff), every brand they sell at the drugstore, and some things in between.

By far, the best mascara I've ever used is...


The tube is divided in half, with one end being a whitish "lengthening primer" and the other end the black top coat. No lie, this mascara does make my lashes look significantly longer and more full. My natural eyelashes are barely average, but when I started wearing Intense XXL...

  • My mom (who historically only comments on my eye makeup to say that it makes me look like I've been crying) said my eyes looked very glamorous.

  • Defying husband stereotypes everywhere, Blake told me my lashes looked "long and luxurious."

  • A woman I was helping at the library told me I should be an EYELASH MODEL. No, really.
  • This is obviously no ordinary mascara. Try it! And tell me about your favorite beauty product in the comments!

    March 12, 2007

    Sarah: Tool of the Week

    Edited to add: If you have any interest in Vroom products, go to Target now. They're on clearance.

    Although I've blamed my dirty cars on a busy schedule and an older hand-me-down vehicle, I am slowly coming to terms with the fact that I'm not a very tidy car owner. This does not mean, however, that I am incapable of improving myself. In fact, as a part of my Semester of Sacking Up (This was never officially announced, but I made a list at the beginning of this school semester of ways I wanted to improve my life. Some things have been crossed off, some I haven't yet completed.), I vowed to get my car-squalor under control. Enter:


    I was attracted by the packaging and intrigued by what my dashboard might look like if not covered by a warm blanket of dust. It wasn't until later that I wondered if this earth-friendly product in the sleek container could be somehow related to Method, which is close to my heart. Why yes. It seems that it is.
    I didn't even remember that LJC, who has been one of my favorite bloggers for some time, wrote about this line of products some time ago.
    Sadly, it appears that Vroom's website no longer exists. I fear this may mean that the line has been discontinued. If that is the case, you should hurry to your nearest Target and snatch up the last of their products. You'll have to fight me for them, though, so be prepared to lose an eye, or at least some hair.

    Oh, and without the layer of dust? My car looks much better, thanks for asking.

    March 13, 2007

    Sarah: Tool of the Week

    During these early spring days I use


    An application every other day,
    Takes the ghostly pallor away.

    March 14, 2007

    Sarah: The only time I've worn Prada.

    My new friend Jeremy plugged our blog. His entry is awesome.

    March 17, 2007

    Lisa: checking in

  • baby - lemon-sized

  • uterus - grapefruit-sized

  • breasts - two glorious California oranges

  • ass - don't ask

  • belly - sticking out even more than usual (Yep, that's a maternity dress.)

  • puke - less frequent

  • heels - holding steady

  • lust for life - intact (If you can still bring yourself to accessorize, all is not lost.)

  • March 21, 2007

    Sarah: Hot Diggity Dog!

    I have a sudden compulsion to make these two dishes for friends and family:
    Corn Dog Casserole and Deep-fried, bacon-wrapped, cheese-filled hot dogs.
    I hope that blew your mind as much as it blew mine.

    March 27, 2007

    Lisa: dude looks like a lady

    Is it possible that hot rollers induce mannishness? One would assume that artificially curling one's hair would result in a more feminine appearance. Strangely, no. Each time I catch a glimpse of myself in a reflective surface, I am somewhat stunned by the incongruous man-face peering out from the center of a soft cloud of curled hair. A dark day for all of us.

    March 28, 2007

    Lisa: dental hygiene is so hot right now

    Sometimes the Fergie-bot says some stuff that the kids out in the suburbs can't understand. This time, the confusion-causing lyric was found in Glamorous:

    Livin' my life
    In the fast lane
    And I wont change
    By the Glamorous, oh the flossy flossy

    Investigation was obviously called for. After verifying that the lyric is indeed "flossy flossy," I checked the sometimes helpful (but always offensive!) Urban Dictionary. There were two helpful definitions that actually predated the song:

    1. Extremely flashy or showy.
    2. Someone who is hot, sexy, or banging.

    Yahoo! Answers also chipped in with:

    3. Ornate or showy in a flashy, often almost vulgar way.

    Now I'm wondering if Jennifer Lopez wasn't just talking about dental floss when she said "if I wanna floss I got my own." Thoughts?

    On an eerily related note, Sarah bought me a toothbrush that plays Let's Get it Started by broadcasting sound waves through my teeth and directly INTO MY BRAIN. That's what the package says, anyway. It's awesome--now I in the mornings I shake my thang AND brush for a full two minutes!

    March 30, 2007

    Lisa: corndog karma

    A few nights ago I got corndogged. In case the name isn't enough of an explanation for you, corndogging is a prank in which the pranksters obtain a large quantity of frozen corn dogs and drive them into the prankee's lawn stick-first in the middle of the night. With any luck, by morning the corndogs have defrosted, and have become a smelly and tantalizing treat for the neighborhood pets.

    The first problem with the fact that I was the victim of this harmless but irritating attack is that corndogging is my signature prank. I INVENTED IT.

    Secondly, this meager attempt barely qualifies:

    THIS, my friend, is corndogging:

    Live and learn. Oh, and stay off my lawn!

    March 31, 2007

    Lisa: office, redux

    Since the office next to our bedroom is eventually going to become the baby's room, last weekend we moved the bookcases and desk downstairs to the family room. I was worried it would feel too crowded down there, but actually I think it's an improvement--it's looking like a real room instead of just a few stray furniture rejects in a weirdly long space. Here's what the family room looks like now:

    In the first and last pictures there, you can see a big set of white louvred doors behind the black office chair. A while ago, with inspiration from various design magazines, catalogs, and books on organization, I made the inside of the closet (which is quite deep and included outlets for power and telephone lines) into an office. It's not as pretty as the mini-office I linked, but it's functional and I can close the doors on the whole thing to make the room look neater. I do all my work for Concert Black from there. Before and after:

    With the furniture out of the way, it was a lot easier to repaint the office/nursery. The old paint color was like Kermit after a hearty meal of radioactive waste, and we don't want the baby to go blind or anything, so we painted over it with a much softer, more minty green I had already bought for the downstairs hallway. An improvement, don't you think? And I still like how the green looks against the other paint colors in the nearby rooms and hall.

    Thanks, Blake and Sarah, for all your hard work and help!