Thursday, October 7, 2010

Red suede shoes

These came from a vintage clothing store I wandered in a few weeks ago. I wasn't really in a buying mode, but there they were, red, suede peep-toe Bettye Muller pumps, to die for. Made in Italy. My size! Needless to say, had to have them.

I know. I know. Second-hand shoes? Trust me, these are the shoes Cinderella's fairy godmother would have put her in if the ball was held in the fall. They're more an amber red. like fall leaves in sunshine than candy-apple red, which is so obvious. Anyway, I woke up this morning full of tears -- my niece is sick and hurting herself, my mom's depressed, my marriage is ... well ... as Eleanore Roosevelt said, "Cry in the bathroom, come out smiling, dear." So I was all set to wear boots - black like my mood - but then I saw The Shoes. I put them on, all the awful news be damned, I started to smile. They're defiant and strong and sexy and grown up, all the things I wish my sweet niece (and so many countless of other women I know) would feel. My advice? The world can be brutal, so get yourself some really great shoes and kick up your heels.

Thursday, September 23, 2010


Longing to travel today. Actually, it seems like I'm always longing to travel so should probably just do it. The usual excuses: bills, children, job, no freedom. I'm reading a book now in which the author said that she put off going back to Italy for 20 years for those same excuses. Then one day she traded in her miles, packed her bag, and went. It's really that simple, I suppose. Do you put off dreams or are you good about just going for it?

Friday, September 17, 2010

Second Grade Mafia

The other day my son asked me if second grade was the hardest one of all. "When you're in it," I told him. "It will seem easy to you in a few years, just like kindergarten seems easy to you now."
But some things don't get easier. Like rejection. And hurt.

I'm not sure how it works in your schools, but at my little elementary school, there's a cabal (really, that's not an exaggeration) of women who run the show. Now, I'm all for those super-loyal volunteers who make things happen. We've all seen them: at church, school, Cub Scouts, you name it. Usually, there's a dedicated core of individuals who work tirelessly so the rest of us who are either too disorganized, too busy,too lazy, whatever, can enjoy the fruits of their labor. I'm not talking about this kind of selfless dedication. I'm talking about women who literally shoved my sweet friend aside when she tried to sign up to be a "room captain" for our second grade.

Quite possibly, we need a change of language. I mean, who doesn't want to be a captain? Or a chief? Apparently, not this small group of women who left off my friend's name from the list of class reps, berated her for speaking up -- oh so tentatively-- about possibly sharing responsibility for organizing class parties, who told her that because she worked it was inconvenient to work with her as a volunteer.

Now, I realize in the great panoply of human drama, internecine fighting at an elementary school may seem, well ludicrous, laughable, possibly pathetic. My friend is not this. She's a five-foot-tall (in heels) pistol who runs at 5 a.m. before the rest of the world is up, runs her own company, devotes herself to her three kids, and is in love with and supportive of her husband. She drives hours every week to take care of a father with Parkinson's and have lunch with her mother. She's not perfect. But she's funny and wise. She has grace in the true sense of the word. It's not about her fashion or style, it's her compassion for the world. Her humor. She truly never complains. But I have seen her cry when she sees someone picked on. So, I am mad. Truly stinking mad at how this friend has been treated. This isn't about cupcakes. It's about bullying that's become all-too-pervasive today. If she, and any other parent, want to get involved, to participate in class parties -- to be a part of their children's daily lives, because God knows time does whiz by too quickly -- then who is a group to shove her aside? And I wonder, what will all of our children learn by this? We tell them to share, to take turns, to work cooperatively. then we stick a big, ol' asterisk on this. Those rules, we note, don't apply for grown-ups.

So, I'm venting today. To my friend: I love you. Be strong. You are needed. To the others: Shame on you. May you remember the lessons you learned in kindergarten. Because second grade shouldn't be the hardest year of all.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Reel Boobs

Just saw I am Love the other day, and I fell in love with Tilda Swinton's incredibily chic, elegant costumes. But I was most startled when she took off those same threads because her boobs were...real! It was so pre-1990s plastic surgery. Bravo!

Billboard v. BP (oil)

Like hundreds of other readers who saw this incredible picture from the Sartorialist I was immediately charmed. Her legs (strong, sexy), confidence (ditto), style (ditto again) are fabulous. What better model/spokesperson for going green? Seriously. I began riding my bike to work once a week after I saw the devastating photos of the BP oil spill this summer and the comments I got ("You're kidding!" "Won't you get hurt in traffic?") astounded me. I mean, what's the big deal. Apparently, riding a bike (NYC, Paris, Amerstdam not included) is still so strange to Americans. So...Scott, let's get your amazing photo up on billboards, film screens, in magazines, etc. etc. urging everyone to bike like this young lady!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

So it's 2010...

Five days into the New Year so I'm off to a somewhat delayed start. I think it's good.
Want to take the pressure off myself this year to rush, rush, rush and get it all done, right now, without a mistake. This year will be about mistakes, and being ok with that. Letting people close to me make their own. Letting. Go. Not sure if this is wisdom or fatigue, but I think a more Bohemian approach to life will be good. In the meantime, treating myself with this and other incredibly lovely photos of Paris in the snow taken by Alix over at The Cherry Blossom Girl.