Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Random musings

Maggie says:
I love how m-pyrical can be a catch basin for all the goofy thoughts running around in my head. Here we go:

  • There is nothing I distrust more than a glass coffee mug. It's so unnatural and strange! Cold, transparent glass filled with hot, rich coffee? It doesn't make sense! The glass becomes too hot, the coffee becomes too cold. It's jarring to see hot coffee through a glass. Coffee is supposed to be surrounded by ceramic warmth from the coffee pot to your mouth. If you regularly drink from - or worse, serve coffee in - glass coffee mugs, I will never really like you.
  • I recently overheard someone saying that she has nine cats. When her companion seemed a little shocked, her response was, "I know! I used to have 35!" Hoarder, anyone?
  • I think Virgos get a bad rap. One of our lovely Ms is one, but this isn't just about sticking up for her. I have been in more conversations than I can count with entirely different groups of people where someone will say, "Oh, and she/he's a Virgo" and then everyone's eyes start to roll, followed by a knowing "Ohhhhh....." Come on, people! Can poor Virgos really be that untouchable? I mean, sure, they have issues, but don't we all? I think we need to give them a break!
  • I finally saw - and adore, adore, adore - The Station Agent. It features the best representation of one of my-all time favorite character types: "the obnoxious community-builder."
  • We really, really, really need a new Pearl's Dive. I've now spent three different nights wandering aimlessly downtown with friends searching for that elusive food + drink + wallet-friendly dive that will replace our forever beloved (and now closed) hangout. Sigh...
  • This is going to sound terribly bitchy, and it is, but I swear the best birth control I've ever known is to simply go to Old Navy on a weekend. Shouldn't we be taking teenage girls there by the bus full? I have actually left the store twice because of screaming, running-around crazy children with parents just tuning them out. I can't take it! It's not that worth it to find a so-cheap-it'll-fall-apart-in-a-year-but-hey-I-need-a-new- shirt-for-tonight purchase.
  • I went to the Albuquerque the Magazine anniversary party at Seasons the other night and was a little shocked. So this is where all the well-dressed folks in Albuquerque are! I had no idea that women in town actually use double-sided tape for fashion purposes! Where did they buy all those great dresses?! And why did it not occur to me to wear something besides jeans?!
  • I have an irrational fear of putting air in my tires. Why?! What's the worst that could possibly happen?! I have no idea, but I keep avoiding the gas station like it's Marty's reelection headquarters or something. Lame.

Preparing for May

Brian Francis warns:

MAGGIE (Aries): One theme of your chart for the past 18 months has been becoming what you've previously sought outside yourself. In a way, this involves embodying your opposite personality, or opposite qualities. You may want to notice what you seek in others for their soulmate qualities and observe the way you are striving to become these things as well. What you may notice about this process is that it rearranges your dependency patterns. You may decide you need people for some things you never considered before, and don't need them for others that you had considered many times. You may also be feeling independent enough to decide that keeping the peace is not as important to you as it was last week or last month, and you do run the risk of provoking conflict with domestic or intimate partners, particularly if you get the feeling they are keeping score of your transgressions. Proceed with caution.

MARJORIE (Cancer): This is a time to make some significant progress in your life, and to arrange your priorities in a way that makes some sense. It's clear that the themes of marriage, commitment and fidelity are high on your agenda, as if you've become a miner for a heart of gold. It's also true that as much as people say they want these things, most are rarely able to buck up the honesty that it takes to convey that message in deeds rather than words. I suggest you judge people on the messages of their actions rather than what they say. To do that, you're going to need to listen differently for a while, through observation rather than chatter. Remember that if something happens twice, it's probably a coincidence. If it happens three times, it's a pattern. This counts for your actions as well as those of others. Pay attention and see what you notice.

MIKAELA (Virgo): You seem to be hatching your plot to change the world. It's a big one, and there are those times when you resemble a canary sitting on a goose egg. A whole series of recent episodes gave you some indication of what is possible in life, and what the world has to offer, but I think you're working on something better, something entirely of your own design, and which genuinely expresses the new values you've been developing for so long. But I suggest you not fancy yourself too independent from the world or its influences, because you need them. And I suggest that you remember there's always a bit of the old in what is truly new and innovative. A certain daring individual from your past who you now work with will soon help you bridge the ever-elusive gap between today and tomorrow. Don't be fooled by their off-putting demeanor or excess charisma. This person is for real.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Join Maggie and Me: Harwood Anthology Reception

Mikaela invites:
  • If you need to understand the very personal reason to come, see my explanatory, confessional post on m-pyre.
  • If you just want any reason to party with the ms,
  • or if you celebrate poetry and the arts wherever and whenever called (like a cultural bat man or something), just meet us there!

Friday, April 21, 5-8:30pm

Reading begins at 6pm!

Where: Harwood Art Center's
Poets' Plaza

1114 7th St. NW (at Mountain Road)

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Our red hot crush deepens

Maggie says:
As reported after the m-pyre Oscar party, Salma Hayek is a woman M3 all agree on. She's sexy, smart, talented, passionate, interesting... and did I mention sexy?

The crush just became full-fledged infatuation. As just about anyone could guess by now, when you throw in some good politics, a simple m-pyre crush can quickly become a flaming hot pyre of obsession. So predictable, us three...

My copy of Frida is about to get its 10,000th viewing in honor of this latest twist.

Washington Post: Immigration is Not in the Script for Hollywood's Cause Celebs. (Or, as I'd title this article: "...for Hollywood's Celebs We Usually Write About.") And also in US Weekly: Salma Speaks Out on Immigration.


“As a human being, I find this situation intolerable. As an immigrant, I find it offensive. And as an American citizen, I find it disheartening. The work that these immigrants do directly affects the health of the U.S. economy.

I have already been in contact with Latin activist Dolores Huerta and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in an effort to figure out what is the most effective way for me to participate in this movement.

My company, Ventanarosa, in solidarity with the immigrants, was closed this past Monday and will again be closed on May 1 in observance of the protests.”

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Warning: Serious Pee--n-Pants Hilarity

Mikaela snorts:
I haven't been on Threadbared in a while. O Lordy. I could not keep the giggles in this morning. My office already complains I'm loud; now they can complain I'm shiftless, too!

Used Panty-hose Week made my month. Thanks, Threadbared!

See March 27-31, 2006. Guffaws commence here.

[On your right] we have a life-sized pantyhose “companion doll.” And yes, that really is as sad as it sounds.

She’s fully clothed, thank god, but disturbing nonetheless. Even more frightening is the book’s description of her as “a good listener and a steady companion.”


Hey, who are we to judge? The doll could have a great personality for all we know. And if not, well….at least she has an enormous set of knockers.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Girl alert

Maggie says:
Just got a haircut and I must gossip about it.

Inspire, the new Bumble + Bumble salon downtown on Central, is awesome.

They're the cutely renovated green storefront between Lindy's and the Bubble Lounge, just west of 5th.

Chris, the owner/operator/master stylist, is a doll.

And he's not terribly expensive, like my former haircutting flame, either.

They've only been open two weeks and could use some friendly business. Bonus: they're open until 10 on Friday and Saturday nights, perfect for having a drink with the girls and then all going to get your hair cut. Or cheering on that one friend who you all know needs to chop off her locks but will only do so if you get her drunk first.

Check out the plastered walls inside, too. Also Chris' handiwork. (Did I mention he did the exterior himself?)

Okay, done with my gushing. But go! Fabulous haircuts and fun conversation await you!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

And then there's the nosepicker....

Mikaela says:
On the other side of cool, there's Tom & Katie's kid, who's at a disadvantage already.

Great story in the Washington Post about some of the weird restrictions -- on the woman -- Scientology places on childbirth. See for yourself. Katie has GOT to be thinking, "What on earth -- or other planets -- did I get myself into?" Take the baby and run, Katie. Don't look back.

- Silent birth. How is this even possible without sedation? According to an explainer now prominently linked on the Scientology Web site, screams are okay -- just certain words or phrases (like "Scientology is weird, man!") should be avoided.

- The pacifier. Star magazine reported that Cruise had an adult-sized pacifier specially made to help muffle any birth-related screaming, moaning and general mommy blather. Cruise denies the report.

- Signs. Signs plastered around the delivery room will remind Katie to "keep silent."

- Grandma not welcome. Fearing bad karma -- or some kind of disturbance in the Scientological force -- Holmes' mom is reportedly persona non grata in the delivery room.

- No baby talk. Katie mustn't talk to little TomKitten for seven days. If true, this seems like the most unnatural limit of all. How many studies are there about the importance of a mother's affection from the get-go?

- Baby's first days. According to the writings of L. Ron Hubbard, here courtesy of Slate, after birth the baby should "be wrapped somewhat tightly in a warm blanket, very soft, and then left alone for a day or so."

(Notice all of the above limits are on Katie and not Tom. Who knew Scientology was so sexist?)

I'm not worried about baby TomKitten, though. According to the Scientology explainer everything will be okay:

Most children raised in good Scientology homes are above average in ability and quickly begin to understand how and why people act as they do. Life thus becomes a lot happier and safer for them.

Coolest, quirkiest kid ever...

Maggie says: gonna be the upcoming love child of Maggie Gyllenhaal and Peter Sarsgaard.

CNN: Gyllenhaal, Sarsgaard engaged, expecting a baby

I ADORE these two actors.

I swear Peter Sarsgaard is the most underrated actor ever.

This is totally my favorite celebrity couple of all time. Both make smart movie choices, are unapologetically brainy and intense, and each have double-A action in their names...

Bound to be a genius match. I love it!

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Food = Community = I Need This Book

Maggie says:
My inner shopaholic is trembling.

I've gotta have The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals, by Michael Pollan.

This Salon article got me. Read it, it's incredible! He touches on everything I care about, I swear:
We are what we eat

"The Omnivore's Dilemma" author Michael Pollan on how Wall Street has driven America's obesity epidemic, the misleading labels in Whole Foods, and why we should spend more money on food.

Yes! Yes! Yes!

April 8, 2006 | On the long trip from the soil to our mouths, a trip of 1,500 miles on average, the food we eat often passes through places most of us will never see. Michael Pollan has spent much of the last five years visiting these places on our behalf. "Industrial food," as Pollan defines it, "is food for which you need an investigative journalist to tell you where it came from." We have been eating such food for so long that most of us have no memory of the much shorter and less complicated food chains that once tied people to the land. We need someone, in other words, to tell us where food of any kind comes from. A longtime writer on food for the New York Times Magazine and author of the bestseller "The Botany of Desire," Pollan is a good man for the job.

In his new book, "The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals," Pollan traces meals across four different food chains, or, if you prefer, markets, arranged in order of popularity: a McDonald's drive-through meal, a Whole Foods dinner, a meal raised on a "beyond organic" pasture farm in Virginia, and what Pollan labels the "Perfect Meal," one whose ingredients he hunts and forages for himself. In the course of his investigations, Pollan comes across an unlikely collection of people -- from Iowa corn farmers, Kansas feedlot managers and food processing scientists, to rebel farmers, San Francisco Bay area gourmands and fanatic mushroom foragers -- yet manages to approach all of them with a common sympathy. As he sees it, the corn farmer dumping nitrogen on his fields, the veterinarian loading corn-fed cattle with medication, and the hog farmer snipping pigs' tails to prevent stress-induced chewing in close quarters are all driven by the same pressures. He lays the blame for our destructive and precarious system, if at all, on those in Washington and on Wall Street -- at the USDA and Archer Daniels Midland -- who set the rules of the game. But then they too, he knows, are responding to a set of pressures that come from all of us and our appetites.

"The Omnivore's Dilemma" is equal parts exposé and invitation -- a rolling together of "Fast Food Nation" and "The Moosewood Cookbook" to make the case for saner, more pleasurable eating habits. "Our ingenuity in feeding ourselves is prodigious," Pollan writes, "but at various points our technologies come into conflict with nature's way of doing things, as when we seek to maximize efficiency by planting crops or raising animals in vast monocultures. This is something nature never does, always and for good reason practicing diversity instead."

Oh yes!

Food encompasses everything. It all comes back to food. Everything we need to understand on a global level down to a community level we can understand by how food is eaten. It's magical. And horrendous. And f%*$cked up. And fixable. Fixable on a community scale, fixable on a global scale, and most importantly fixable on an individual scale.

Why is food such a "taquito moment?" Because we truly are what we eat. By watching you order food, by noting where you shop for food, by seeing what you eat when no one thinks you're watching, I can learn everything there is to know about you.

I pay more for food not because I can afford to, but because the alternative is so much worse. I'm not a preacher about it, though; as Pollan notes, that's where we so often go wrong. But he's right: you should pay more for food, too.

And we should all, and I mean all, support local family farmers.

(That's with our wallets, folks, not just with our hypothetical good intentions.)