Close your eyes and make a wish

In one week I will turn twenty-nine.

Holy smokes.

That’s, like, super grown up isn’t it?

I mean, I’m by no means a proper Old or anything – goodness knows.

But! Growing up I always assumed that once I neared an age that had both a three and a zero it would mean that THINGS would be SERIOUS and that I would be MATURE and, oh, I don’t know, WISE.

(Or something.)

Now, it’s not that I think I’m none of these things.

I am, of course, properly wise.

(Or something.)

But mostly, it’s so awesome to realize that age really means nothing.

Nada.

Zilch.

Bupkis.

Nothing will ever be as inconsequential, fleeting and intangible as those four little numbers littered about your birth certificate, drivers licence, passport and all other personal identification pieces you have littered about your purse (or wallet, or fannypack, or what have you.)

And I mean, who actually wants to relive their early twenties?

(If you do – WHO ARE YOU? And WHY?)

Despite the fact that I spent these years with the massively excellent man to whom I am now lucky enough to call my husband (or permanent life partner in crime) I was pretty, deeply unhappy for a good portion of this time.

I was incredibly ill (suffering as I was from both anorexia and bulimia), and completely neurotic about school, and work and my constant quest for perfection in every, and all areas of my life.

It was exhausting.

And now?

I cannot even begin to explain how good it is to be able to walk by a mirror, or window, or any semi-reflective surface and not feel compelled to look at myself.

It has got to be the most freeing experience in the whole wide world, and I wouldn’t trade all the anti-wrinkle cream in the world to go back that time in my life where, like Narcissus, I was just drowning all the live-long day.

Of course I’m not going to lie and say that I don’t still struggle with perfectionism (daily), because I do (and probably always will, in some iteration or another) but I am no longer sick, and every day I get better and better at giving myself a break (or the many breaks that I deserve.)

And how awesome this that?

And you know what is more awesome?

I am finally getting to a place where I am comfortable celebrating myself and all the cool things that come along with being me.

Because dudes, I have accomplished a lot of really cool stuff in my relatively short time here on planet earth and for the longest time I refused to even acknowledge them, let along celebrate them. As a young women that just always seemed SO gauche, and I didn’t want anyone to think that I was stuck up, or a braggart, or just an insufferable jackass.

(I might be that last one, but that’s only when playing Ticket to Ride after too many glasses of white wine.)

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Not quite the right photo but one that really, really makes me laugh.

And no only that, but there are so many amazing and brilliant things coming down the pipe in the next few months which leaves me with ever more reasons to celebrate: work adventures, incredible public speaking opportunities, radio show hosting gigs, half-marathons, Tough Mudder, trips to the Okanagan, Chicago, and Hawaii, and so much more!

PLUS –

Five years ago, Marc and I bought our first home (our exquisite town-home that I love very, very much), and very soon we will be moving to our first real house-home!

Not to mention the fact that I have the most amazing, life-affirming and life-enriching friends, many of whom will be coming over to have a massive dance party with us next Saturday.

And even though they live so gosh-darned far away,my family are my rocks, and they make all the beautiful diamonds and gems of this world shimmer just the more.

Finally, I am married to my best friend, the greatest man I will ever know.

Man.

The simple act of just typing out those words makes me SO excited for not just the next season or two, but for the bloody next twenty-nine years!

Twenty-nine mirror free years.

Won’t you join me?

It’s just a cake. It’s just a birthday cake.

Hey kids.

It’s my birthday in two days, and as such I’ve been gifted with some pretty sweet swag from Sephora:

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Seriously, all you need to do is purchase one expensive blush there ONE TIME, and two years later they’re still giving you free stuff!

Now that is the kind of relationship I can get behind.

So yes, this Sunday I turn twenty-eight years old, which officially vaults me into the “late-twenties” catagory.

This is fabulous, because it means that my actual age is finally catching up to what I feel to be my “inner age” – a number that I imagine hovers somewhere around seventy-two, give or take a few tubes of Polydent.

GET OFF MY LAWN YOU YOUNG WHIPPERSNAPPERS!

Ahem.

Meanwhile, my “outer age” seems to be suffering from a whacked-out case of Benjamin Buttons, as I can’t seem to go anywhere without getting IDed.

Just the other day I was carded at 7-11 while trying to buy a one dollar scratch and win.

(As you can imagine, my life is pretty much a continual stream of glitz and glamour.)

Of course, being me, I didn’t have any ID on me, (because who brings their whole wallet on a late-night jaunt about the neighbourhood?) so I wasn’t able to complete my purchase.

I was all: LOOK LADY – I’LL TAKE IT, BUT NEXT TIME GIVE ME THE DANG GOLD RUSH AND NO ONE GETS HURTS, YA DIG?

Then I took my can of coke and ran out of the joint laughing like a maniac.

(That didn’t actually happen.)

(OR DID IT?)

This weekend, Mr. M and I are going to gussy ourselves up for a fancy-schmancy dinner on Saturday night, and then it’s off to the familial units on Sunday afternoon for more pageantry and more importantly, some sweet, sweet Superbowl action.

(Or as myself and many others have taken to calling it: The SUPERBAUGH.)

To be honest though, I was so super (har har) bummed when Seattle was eliminated (WHY OH WHY DID YOU CALL THAT TIME OUT PETE!?) that I’m a little less than enthused about the two teams competing the finals. However, if I had to pick a team, I’m going for San Fran because I don’t think I have it in my being to actually cheer for Ray Lewis.

I cannot stand that guy.

I’ll have to wait a week to celebrate with friends, as VanComedy Fest is next Friday, but I figure what better time to jam that after some crack-up comedy?

And in the meantime…

Fry-up time!

Sister acts.

So I don’t know if you are all acquainted with the awesome Canadian power due that is Tegan and Sara (they are two sisters from Calgary, Alberta), but if you’re not, you should probably rectify this situation at once.

These gals have been making rad music for years, but their most recent release is much “poppier” than their older records, and being the pop-lover than I am, I really can’t get enough of it.

So if you have a hankering for some mad dancing about your house, please let me recommend the following:

Last weekend I was in full-on cleaning mode and I must have listened to this song well near twenty times.

Plus, this music video is pretty much exactly what I imagined every one of my birthday parties would be, during my years as a permanently love-struck, doe-eyed teenage girl.

(Unfortunately, it never did happen.)

(OR DID IT?)

Next!

Olive garden.

So the other night I returned home from work to a startlingly cold and very much empty house, what with my husband having to work late, and the temperatures hovering just above zero degree centigrade outside.

My whole neighbourhood was socked in with a low-hanging, thick, wet fog, and just walking home from skytrain had left me feeling well-soaked and completely ravenous.

After taking off my boots and putting on the fireplace, I immediately set about preparing a dinner that would both quell my hunger pains and warm-up my frigid little body.

(I may have taken a few minutes to cuddle with my kitten before commencing dinner preparations.)

The end result was a meal of spaghetti with tomatoes, olives, basil and fresh mozzarella, accompanied by crunchy French bread and a massive mug of earl grey tea (not exactly the most traditional drink, I know, but goodness knows if it wasn’t needed to rejig my sluggish circulation.)

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And it was absolutely, blooming glorious.

Onwards!

Part two.

So last week I wrote about Guy Ritchie and how much I liked Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

Well, I took many of my brilliant readers’ advice and watched Snatch, the quasi-following up to Lock Stock.

There I sat on the couch, with my spaghetti and tea, and there I laughed like a drain to end all drains.

Which is to be said, A LOT.

So thanks to you, beauty cats! Do keep the film recommendations coming – if there’s more laughing to be had, I WILL HAVE IT.

And there you have it you fab chaps! Are any of you celebrating a birthday this weekend?

I will be partying it up with my (day of birth) twin Alexei Kostitsyn.

That Belarusian doesn’t know how lucky he is.

A golden oldie, for a golden oldie

Well, friends, it’s finally happened.

Yesterday, at approximately 1:30 pm, January 10, 2012, I officially became AN OLD.

Red wine is totes an old people drink, right?

And just what exactly is AN OLD, you may ask?

AN OLD is basically the personification of the following situation:

[scene: Old codger (of indeterminate sex) stands on a creaky, wooden porch. They raise their cane and shake their fists.

Old codger: GET OFF MY LAWN YOU DAGNABBIT KIDS!!!

Fade to black.]

And how exactly have I reached this conclusion, you, dear reader, might deign to ask?

Well, it was a three pronged process.

Yesterday on my lunch break, I took a long walk around the downtown core in an attempt to stretch my legs (and breathe life into my computer-screened eyeballs and mousy wrists), but more importantly to procure a birthday present for a fellow OLD.

(Although, it should be clarified that at the time that I set out, I did not realize that we were fellow OLDs (or peers if you will) as this connection had not yet been cemented by the following three events.)

Now, for the sake of full disclosure, I’m not one to really begrudge the aging process – at least not anymore. (I had my first age related panic attack on the eve of my eighteenth birthday when I realized that unlike Mary Shelley I would not be publishing my first book before exiting high school.)

But now I’ve pretty much chilled the crap out about those kinds of things. Plus, I’m also happy to report that also unlike Mary Shelley I didn’t turn into some crazy sexual deviant who hangs out with Byron-esque characters and does a ton of hallucinogenic drugs.

(At least not yet.)

(KIDDING!)

Anywho, as I was saying, the first event that solidified my transition from HIP CAT to OLD (now, it seems I will need to start worrying about my hips) was when I was paying for said before mentioned birthday gift. As I gazed at the young woman who was ringing me up, I actually remarked on the following (albeit in my mind, thank goodness):

Lady – don’t you know that NO ONE IS GOING TO TAKE YOU SERIOUSLY WITH THAT MUCH METAL IN YOUR FACE?

Umm, Mom? Is that you?

Holy crap.

The second event took place as I was browsing through another store. The music pumping its way through the shop’s stereo system was, to put it mildly, utter shite. I actually thought to myself:

This isn’t music! This is just noise!

Ahem.

(This one actually cracks me the heck up, because I can actually hear it so clearly in my mom’s voice that I actually heard it as such when it played out in my head. Seriously hilarious. Also, I actually get a kick out of the LMFAO song, but it makes M’s hairs stand on edge.)

Finally, as I was walking back to work, I paused and stared a large window display, and asked myself (again, with my inside, mother voice):

Who the flipping heck would wear THAT? For serious!?

And BAM! It hit me – Oldsville, BC – Population 1. ME.

So bring on the miserhood! I have ordered pants that go up to my collarbone, orthotics, dentures and bifocals.

The thing that bugs me the most about all of this is that should I actually procure all that clothing, I’ll just end up looking like another idiot hipster, whom, it should be noted, are the usual recipients of my get of my lawns ire.

I’ll work on it.

But speaking of hipsterdom, I returned today to the store of said before mentioned horror-show window display, in hopes of conducting a very important sociological (or, you know, plain old fashioned-based) experiment.

I sought out three mannequins and then proceeded to try on the outfits showcased by each model, in hopes of validating my previous claim that no one should be wearing these clothes, lest they wish to be labelled unhinged, or you know, batshit insane.

Onwards to outfit #1!

You have to pay more for the bedpan purse and ice chips.

This can be summed up in three simple words: HOSPITAL. GOWN. CHIC.

SEXY PATIENT! and frog.

Next!

Outfit #2 is a bit tricky – due to my craptastic camera it’s a little hard to discern what the fresh hell is going on here. I am wearing some pretty snazzy corduroy shorts, made to look like a skirt, but with a neat pleat right up the middle. The shirt itself isn’t half bad, but the cardigan is STRAIGHT OUT OF DYNASTY.

Blanche called. She wants her sweater back.

Shoulder pads? DO NOT WANT.

SUIVANT!

Outfit #3 is probably my favourite because it made me feel like one of those really amped up shopping channel hosts, or you know, the guy who used to yell “COME ON DOWN!” on The Price is Right.

The hills are alive! With the sound of Plinko!

The jacket reminds me of something that Maria Rainer would put together if she was interviewing for a job at a Palm Springs retirement resort and not au pair to the von Trapps.

All in all, pretty weird stuff, and definitely not something an OLD should by sporting on a regular basis. Plus, I’m one to readily admit that I always give myself the creeps, skulking around change rooms and taking photos of myself (in outfits I know I will never purchase no less).

But don’t take that as an admission that I’m about to stop anytime soon.

It’s just that as I mature, I have to become more aware of my surroundings.

How else will I know if someone’s fooling around on my lawn?

What women want

Hello friends.

Have any of you had a chance to see that meme that’s been floating around facebook for the past few days?  It’s made up of two photos – one of Nigella Lawson and one of Gillian McKeith (a UK based nutritionist and tv presenter).

The nub and gist of its message is: one woman (Nigella) is kind of old but majorly hot, and the other, Gillian, IS SO OLD, OMG DEFINITELY LIKE CRYPT KEEPER STATUS AND SO UGLY I WISH I COULD UNSEE THAT MESS.

The comparison between the two is supposed to bring on the major LOLZ.

The reasons supporting this conclusion, and, undoutebly, your uncontrollable laughter?

That Hottie McHot Nigella eats butter, meat and carbs (aka doesn’t give a hoot about what she puts in her body and because of this attitude, holds the much coveted status of Hottie McHot), while in contrast, that Old Ugly Boot of a Bagmeister Gillian emphasizes clean, healthy eating (which in turn, only further emphasizes her Old, Ugly Boot of a Bagmeisterness.)

A relatively new boot, for comparison purposes.

Now, this is really grating my gears for a number of reasons:

1.)    It’s hasn’t been all that long (oh, I’d wager 30.7 seconds) since I was last told that my net worth as a woman is first and foremost determined by my looks that I really don’t need two hundred bastards on facebook reminding me of this.

2.)    Body-snarking?  Really.  Not.  Cool.  Or.  Groundbreaking.  Get back to me when you have something else – not at the expense of someone else’s looks – which you want to talk to me about.

3.)    Trying to frame this meme as an argument for the whole – eat what you want and feel great about yourselves!!! – movement is a total fallacy.  Anyway you look at it the people posting this image are still shitting on someone for not only what they eat but more importantly how they look.

Eat what you want and feel good about it – period.  Leave other people out of the equation.

If this meme was comprised of two photos, say, one of Chanel Iman and the other of Melissa McCarthy and the caption mocked Ms. McCarthy on not only her looks, but implied that she looks the way she does because of her eating habits, something tells me that people probably wouldn’t be posting it on social media, nor would it enjoy the same popularity of the current image (if any at all.)

4.)    Lastly, that photo of Ms. McKeith was taken when she was appearing in the (totally awful, tabloid schlocky) TV show “I’m a celebrity get me out of here” (meaning: she was living in the blasted JUNGLE and not the Clinique makeup counter at Harrods.  To be honest though, what in the world was she thinking not bringing at LEAST an under-eye concealer or eyelash curler?  Sheesh!)*

Nigella meanwhile (who I will freely admit is a gorgeous, glamorous woman) is pictured on the red carpet at some kind of soiree/movie premier deal.  Sitting at home in her snuggie, post-Saturday-night-do, she is not.

I cannot help but feel (and this relates back to #3) that if someone was to call shenanigans on the discrepancies between the two pictures – for instance yelling out: “NIGELLA IS TOTES OBVS ROCKING THE SPANX AND MAKEUP GUN HERE GUYS!!!” that this person would be lambasted as a body-snarking, fat-shamer.

Meanwhile, I would be there sitting in the corner whispering: you all are completely tone deaf to the rampant bullying that is presented in the original message. RED RUM.

Okay, so now that I’ve gotten that off my chest (and in its place I am putting some metaphorical vapo-rub – otherwise known as The Muppets Christmas Carol) I will move onto item #2 on today’s agenda.

Why for the love of Pete, WHY, do bookstores insist on marketing certain books under the banners: FOR HIM/FOR HER?

Seriously – I almost had a bloody coronary today walking into Coles.

HEY MS. REISMAN!  Could we emphasize destructive, totally outdated gender norms ANY MORE IF WE POSSIBLY TRIED!?! Oh sweet mother of pearl give me strength.

Let’s look at some of topics covered in the books put aside for him shall we?

  • Fiction, Sports, Politics, Humour, History and Biography.

And for those silly, simple womenz?

  • Fashion, Diet cookbooks, Regular cookbooks (thanks for not forgetting teh fatties guys!), and Autobiographies by some ladies from the “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills”.

What. The. Heck.

For serious, Tina Fey’s book was included in the men’s section and not the women’s!  My heart is actually racing just thinking about it.

The crazy thing is, I know that there is definitely an excellent meme in here somewhere.  So stay tuned!

I just need to make my way out of the jungle first.

*Please see: OED – sarcasm