31 January 2007

Rant: Burt's Bees Honey Lip Balm


I'm going to have to give the latest version of Burt's Bees lip balm a huge thumbs down. It's been out for a while, but I didn't try it until recently. Why do I try new things when I have something that works fabulously? In this case, it was because I stopped to get a lip balm and the place only had the honey version. I was desperate. I cannot live without my lip balm.

The first problem with the honey lip balm is the fragrance. Ugh. Gross. Honey does have a fairly floral scent, but man, is it strong in this lip balm. It should be noted that I rarely like the scent of any product with honey in the name. I'm thinking mainly of the "milk and honey" soaps and their ilk. I know the peppermint scent of the original lip balm is strong, as well. I probably shouldn't have been surprised.

However, my main problem with the honey lip balm is that when I use it, my lips end up much more rough than they were say, in the morning before I put any lip balm on. That kind of defeats the purpose, no? I shouldn't have to bust out the toothbrush and sugar because Booty Call Matt is on his way over and my lips are gross. He manages to somehow keep whatever scruff is on his face nice and soft -- to the point where I can't remember having stubble burn even one time in more than two years of making out with him. He shouldn't have to kiss my rough lips.

Plus, it bugs the ever-loving bejeebus out of me when my lips are rough. I have a hard enough time keeping my lips in decent shape in the winter. So, good-bye Burt's Bee's Honey Lip Balm. You suck.

30 January 2007

Oh no you didn't.

I've been hearing things about Justin Timberlake making a short joke about Prince at some awards show. Or reading them, I guess. I really don't pay all that much attention to celebrity gossip, unless it comes from The Superficial.

However, yesterday in the Minneapolis paper, I read more about it from Gossip Columnist, C.J.. Apparently, this is something of a burgeoning feud.

Seriously? A feud?

Let me tell you something, Justin Timberlake: you aren't fit hold Prince's jock. Or wear his high-heeled boots. Whatever. You know what I mean. You were in a boy band. You're feuding with PRINCE. The man is a musical genius with a career spanning four decades. You were in a boy band. And quite frankly, I think you owe a great deal of your success to Timbaland's skills as a producer. Prince was making music before you were so much as a gleam in your parents' eyes.

And he may be a tiny, unattractive man, but he has more sexy in his pinkie than you have in your entire body. I can't explain it, because I am six inches taller than the man and I really don't find him the least bit attractive, but damn is he sexy.

So, Justin Timberlake, you can lick my pasty white ass.

29 January 2007

Bye-bye, Bobby.

Barbaro was euthanized this morning. Crazy, middle-aged cat ladies around the country weep into their embroidered pillows.

The Barbaro message board won't load. I'm sure Dee Mirich is composing hundreds of bizarre, stream-of-consciousness haikus in the horses honor.

Bless their batshit insane hearts.

26 January 2007

A stroke of genius.

Okay, so I actually got the idea from a friend of mine a few years ago. However, for some stupid reason, I didn't really think about it until this week. Sadly, my memory was triggered by an episode of Tyra Banks's show that was on when I was at the gym.

I've been using these Pond's make-up removal towelettes for a while to take off my eye make-up at night. I've tried the generic Target version and while they work pretty much just as well, they're quite rough. I have problems using a liquid remover with a cotton ball, because I get wee wisps of cotton in my eyelashes that always seem to end up in my eye and irritate the shit out of me.

After watching that Tyra episode (hey, it was that or craptacular soaps), I remembered using baby wipes once at Carrie's place. So, last night when I was at the grocery store, I grabbed these Pampers wipes. They're fragrance free and have aloe. I figure if something is okay for a baby's ass, it's okay for removing my eye make-up.

They worked like a freakin' dream. Honestly, I was shocked. They were soft and took off even my mascara, quickly and completely. The Pampers wipes worked better than anything I've used that is specifically for eye make-up removal. Go figure. Plus, a container of 80 sells for considerably less than than a pack of 30 of the Ponds towelettes.

All of this got me thinking of other home remedies or cheap alternatives for a variety of beauty products. For example, I posted before about my lip exfoliant odyssey. I used sugar for that again last night. I think it might be a bit more effective if I was to employ a soft-bristled toothbrush, instead of my finger, as an applicator.

Instead of using a clarifying shampoo, I add baking soda to my regular shampoo. I find clarifying shampoos to be too harsh on my hair. Plus, they really strip color. The baking soda does strip color a little bit, but I actually tend to like the effect on my hair color. Baking soda is far less harsh, and is also a LOT cheaper.

When in need of a deep conditioning treatment and I'm either broke or don't want to bother going out to buy one, I add a little olive oil to my regular conditioner. This also works like a dream. Apparently, olive oil also works well as a beard conditioner. My friend's brother uses it and his beard is positively silky. I really need to find my bearded man and try it out ... you know, to replicate the results of the experiment or something.

Olive oil is also good for shaving your legs, according to Tyra (God help me). I'd be a little wary of sending it down the pipes, myself. But I imagine it would be great -- far more moisturizing than shaving cream or gel. Conditioner is also good for shaving. I don't bother with the nice stuff. I'll grab a $1 bottle of White Rain or V05 and it works just as well. Of course, if I'm in a pinch with no shave gel and only my regular conditioner, I will use my regular conditioner. There are a couple of drawbacks to using conditioner. One, it seems to clog up the razor faster than shaving cream (I suspect olive oil would do the same). Two, since it's very light, it's hard to see where you've shaved and where you haven't.

Now that I've shared my little tips with y'all, you're either saying, "Bitch, please. That's common knowledge," or "Hey! What great ideas. As it turns out, I have some of my own."

So, if you do have your own tips and tricks for beauty on the cheap, dear readers, won't you share?

24 January 2007

Memo to the Timberwolves:

Now, you know I adore y'all, but this has got to stop. It's all fine and good to play overtime games on a Sunday afternoon or on a weeknight if it's an early game. But when you're on a West Coast road trip and it's Wednesday night and I have to get up for work in the morning I'm going to have to take issue.

I guess I can stay up a little longer. Just make it worth my while. Please?

Update: Thanks for nothing.

23 January 2007

Working from home rules.


And not just because it makes me think of my favorite Simpsons episode. "Hey, Miss Doesn't-find-me-attractive-sexually-anymore: I just tripled my productivity!"

I'm far more productive at home than I am in the office some days. Maybe it's because I feel I really need to be getting stuff done because I'm at home. Or maybe it's because I have all of the distractions right here in front of me and so they aren't really distractions. Getting rid of all that pesky getting-ready time allows me to roll out of bed, put the coffee on and get to work in my pajamas. Sweet!

It's nice that I get to go to the gym on my lunch, too.

20 January 2007

I tried.

I think it was Thursday night, maybe, I tried to post an entry after I got home from the gym, but Blogger shit the bed as I hit "publish."

I've been too busy/cranky/scatterbrained to post anything since. I can barely pull a coherent thought together. I'm hoping these things help get me back on track:



16 January 2007

Part of the majority.

For the first time ever, more women in the U.S. are living without a husband than living with a husband. Sweet. I'm no longer in the minority.

I've never felt a lot of outside pressure to be doing the traditional marriage and 2.5 kids thing. The older my brother, sister and I have gotten, the more our mom has made remarks, but it's nothing compared to what I've heard other people get from their families. Maybe it's because of all the failed relationships in her family. Maybe it's because some of the women in my dad's family have married late and not had kids, so it doesn't seem all that abnormal. I probably feel more pressure from society in general than anything.

Marriage scares me. I've seen plenty of people go through divorces and I don't ever want to have to go through something like that. I was terrified at the idea of moving in with an ex-boyfriend because once you get to that point, it's so much harder to get out. And kids? I really don't think I am cut out to be a parent with a partner, much less a single mom. What happens if I get married and we have a kid and all of a sudden it's not working? My sister is a single mother, and I'm continually amazed at how well she does it. Meanwhile, I can can barely take care of myself.

Will everything change if I meet that guy? Will I suddenly think not only marriage is a great idea, but kids are, too? You hear things from people, but it's difficult for me to really believe them. I've never been with a guy I could see myself with down the road apiece. Right now, the idea of altering my life at all to even make time for someone else just seems preposterous.

Then again, I'm totally into bearded guys right now. Carrie had a dream last year that I would find some burly, bearded guy and marry him. Maybe she was seeing the future. Or maybe it's just cold and beards impart the idea of warmth.

If nothing else, I can take solace in the fact that if I stay in this spouseless majority, my allergy to (and general disdain for) cats will keep me from becoming the Crazy Cat Lady in my neighborhood when I'm old and gray. Or middle-aged and kinda gray.

11 January 2007

You don't know me.

Because I've purchased things from Amazon.com in the past, I occasionally get e-mails from them telling me that they have recommendations for me. Today, they sent me one recommending My Chemical Romance's The Black Parade. I loathe My Chemical Romance and all their ilk. I have no desire to listen to, much less purchase, their Queen rip-off album.

Look, Amazon, you don't know me. Granted, some of these recommendations are spot on. Of course, by the time you recommend them to me, I have nearly always heard of the band and in many cases, already own the album in some form. But stuff like My Chemical Romance, the Gin Blossoms and James Blunt? Seriously? God forbid I buy something that's a gift for someone, because then the stuff you suggest is completely skewed.

You're recommending The X-Files season whatever because I bought The Simpsons? They're nothing alike! I mean, I like them both, but I don't get the connection. Both shows were on Fox and there was an X-Filesesque episode of The Simpsons. But that's it. And I can totally see why your software would recommend David McCullough's 1776 based on the fact that I bought Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Just look at this excerpt from Amazon's review of McCullough's book:

Esteemed historian David McCullough covers the military side of the momentous year of 1776 with characteristic insight and a gripping narrative, adding new scholarship and a fresh perspective to the beginning of the American Revolution.

Right. That's totally like wizards. You should probably just quit trying Amazon. It's not that I don't appreciate the effort. I do, very much. But, well, you're doing a really shitty job.

10 January 2007

With renewed fervor.

Great. Barbaro has suffered a setback. This means, of course, that the Barbaro message board is getting even more action than normal. I'm sure the servers at the University of Pennsylvania are groaning under the weight, because there are plenty of freaks who post there on a daily basis. Granted, sometimes it's difficult to tell which of the batshit insane messages are real and which ones come from inspired Deadspin commenters. That just makes the real messages all the more frightening, I think.

My one,only & precious Bobby: I'm so distressed for you & will hold you, your dr's, your owners,trainers,& jockey in my heart today & will pray many times. You keep fighting, remember you're Barbaro! Sending many kisses w/mtns of love to you,
J Bell, 54; Pulaski, VA,
posted on 2007-01-10 11:52:12

Dear Barbaro, You are a hero in every sense of the word. You are truly loved by millions of people. I think about you everyday and hope you will feel better again soon. Hang in there dear Barbaro. One day I'll hang your picture in my house.
Marilyn Tango, 55; Lake Mary, FL, USA
posted on 2007-01-10 11:50:05

Hi Handsome Sweetheart:)Hope 2-day better 4 u than y'day!We are ALL praying/holding good/positive thoughts for you!Hang in there, it WILL get better:)Love You 2 Pieces:)xxooxxoo
Lynne, 62; Sonora, CA, USA-BARBARO NATION
posted on 2007-01-10 11:17:47

Dear Barbaro, My heart goes out to you today as I hear you have suffered a setback and some pain. I am praying constantly for you today. I am so heartbroken that you have yet another challenge to overcome. Your racing fan, Mary Prater
Mary, 60; Snohomish, WA, USA
posted on 2007-01-10 11:13:19

Hey, I think it's great that these women can take time out of their busy schedule of feeding their 47 cats and posting messages to spend an entire day praying for Barbaro. Did I mention that HE IS A FUCKING HORSE?

If it's all the same to them, I think if I'm going to say any prayers, I'll say them for my friend's dad who is having a brain tumor removed tomorrow. Or maybe for the 13-year-old girl who was brutally raped on Monday in St. Paul on her way to the school bus. You know, people.

09 January 2007

Maybe yoga will help.

It was good to write the crabby rant yesterday. As soon as I finished writing it and hit the "publish" button, I felt a little better.

I felt a great deal better by the time I had finished up at the gym. Though, my hopes that the Resolutioners might not be out in full force because of the national championship game went unfulfilled. There are too many foreigners and gay dudes at my gym for people skipping a workout to watch football to make a difference in attendance. I even made time to give myself a shoddy pedicure last night.

Still, I thought I'd gotten everything out yesterday in the blog entry and last night at the gym. Guess not. I'm antsy and stressed out today. I feel totally scatterbrained. Actually, I am totally scatterbrained today. I left my wallet in my gym bag (I hope). I don't really think I'll need it for anything, but it's just stressful to not have it with me. What if I need my ID for some completely random and totally unforseen reason? Also, I forgot to put deodorant on this morning. So, of course, I'm freaking out about that. I keep checking to see if I stink and I think that's stressing me out and making me sweat a little and OH MY GOD I CAN'T STOP THINKING ABOUT IT AND I'M GOING TO BE DRENCHED IN SWEAT AND THEN I'LL REEK.

I seriously considered going home to put deodorant on and check to make sure my wallet was in my gym bag. I would have probably just stayed and worked from there. However, I'm being oddly productive today and I would probably feel even worse if I left to go home for such a lame reason. Going home and coming back was totally out of the question, because that would have grated on me even more.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel, though. I have yoga tonight. I know that will make me feel awesome. I get to go to Target after and I might buy myself a treat of some sort (socks on clearance? nail polish? the possibilities are endless). Tomorrow is pay day and I can run all my errands that have been piling up.

I feel more calm already. I can only hope it gets better from here. And I can only hope I remember to put deodorant on before going to the gym tonight.

Oh, and Happy Birthday, Mom!

08 January 2007

Crabby rant.

I don't really want to do this here, but I need to extract this crap from my brain before I go nuts. Malina isn't around today and I don't want to bother Carrie, because she's got enough shit to deal with at the moment. "Hey, I know your dad is having a tumor removed from his brain on Thursday, but could you just listen to me bitch about these petty things that are driving me nuts today? Thanks."

Still no transportation reimbursement check for me. Why is it that on the off chance I get the check in the last week of the month, I have to wait for the first of the month to cash it? But here I am a full week into January and I've got nothing. Our bookkeeper ran checks the last week in December and then on Thursday. But mine was not in the batch. She then went to the hospital to have her baby. I figure maybe I'll get it for February. And then I'm sure it'll all be a month off. Awesome! I dropped out of the flex plan for this year because I was sick of having money taken out of every paycheck and then paying out of pocket for my prescriptions and whatnot and then having to wait a month or two to get reimbursed.

I have no idea what possessed me to do it, but I decided to clean out my MySpace inbox an hour ago. Not long after I met Whatshisfuckingface, the messages he'd sent me on MySpace disappeared. Then, today, there they were in my inbox. Well, kind of. There were messages there saying "this profile has been deleted." Or no longer exists or whatever. But there was still a whole Friday afternoon's worth of empty messages there, mocking me. It's been more than six months and I'm still getting kicked in the gut. I should not be crying about this today. And yet, here I am.

Last night, Independence Day was on some channel and I ended up watching most of it. I looked it up on IMDB for some reason and was a little shocked to see it came out in 1996. That of course made me think of Cornelius, who I was dating at the time. I'd gone to see the movie with him. It took me a while to nail down the dates, but I realized that I broke up with him nearly seven years ago. And I still think about him and get mad about the way he treated me. Or, the way I allowed myself to be treated. Maybe I hold on to stuff for too long. It took me almost four years after breaking up with him to get to the point where I could really like anyone again, which was about as long as I was with him. That whole thing was with The OC and was a nonstarter. It has been so far anyway. But that got me to the point where I was able to let myself go a little more with Whatshisfuckingface. I know I was miserable a lot of the time with him. So, I don't know why I'm still upset that he's gone. For the most part, I've been just as happy, if not more so, with my life since he's been gone.

And now here I am again. Thinking I really should just completely take a break from even considering dating. Thinking I should take a big break from Booty Call Matt. A permanent break. That whole relationship is just a cop out. I can't deal with a real relationship, so I'll just have a really, really casual thing with some random guy. For more than two years. I suppose that kind of takes the "random guy" tag off of him.

Bah. I'm so tense. My shoulder feels like it's going to pop out of the socket at any moment. I think that actually makes me even more tense, which exacerbates the whole situation. I can't wait to get out of here and get to the gym. And then come home from the gym and drink some wine and watch football.

*deep breath* Tomorrow is another day.

07 January 2007

Sleeping should not be stressful.

Good God, almighty. I have been having some bizarre dreams this week. Earlier in the week it was the dreams of kids trying to steal my shit. Last night, though, was even more disturbing.

I woke up very disconcerted this morning. I'd been dreaming that nearly all of my family -- including my nuclear family and all the aunts, uncles and cousins on my dad's side of the family -- were going to be taken away by some terribly malevolent being. This evil creature was going to suck out their souls and send my family back, but they'd be his slaves. It wasn't just my family, either. This was happening to everyone. The people who had their souls sucked out would then go back out into the world to quell any sort of a revolt.

For whatever reason, it hadn't happened to me and at least one of my cousins, who was pregnant in my dream. I hope she's not in real life. She's a bit too young. The dream never got far enough along for our family to have had their souls sucked out (as far as I knew, I guess), so I spent most of the dream trying to figure out a way to save them without being found out.

I don't understand why I only have bizarre dreams. I mean, I probably have normal dreams like everyone else seems to, but I don't remember them. I rarely remember my dreams, but when I do, they're batshit fucking insane.

Awesome.

04 January 2007

So very tired.

Ugh. I think all the go-go-go holiday weeks have finally caught up with me. I'm just freakin' exhausted. Of course, it's partly my fault. I stayed up late on Monday and Tuesday nights. And of course, I did it for no good reason.

I nearly overslept today. I had some very stressful dreams last night. There were people trying to steal stuff from me. I woke up all cranky and anxious. That's not exactly the way you want to feel when you open your eyes in the morning.

Hmmmm ... I should probably just stop writing now, because I'm not sure what I am even saying.

02 January 2007

The New Year's Resolutioners.

Anyone with a gym membership knows who The New Year's Resolutioners are. Well, a gym membership that you use regularly, I guess. They're the folks who flock to the gym in droves starting January 1. Okay, so I'm not entirely sure if they actually start on New Year's Day, because I'm usually spending the day in a hungover haze. But I know they show up on January 2.

I don't have as much of a problem with the people who know what they're doing. Maybe they fell off the workout wagon and decided this was as good a time as any to get back to the gym. That's cool, I guess. It's the newbies who drive me nuts. They don't know how to use the equipment, they don't know gym etiquette, they show up and take all the machines and force me to adjust my workout schedule.

I shouldn't be so nasty. They're trying to better themselves. I just wish they weren't doing it at my workout time. At least I know the bulk of them (hahahaha, bulk) will be gone in about six weeks.

New Year's Resolutions aren't my thing. I made one a couple of years ago that I actually kept, though. It's a multi-year project -- reading the classics that I've never read. I might conquer my list of 100-plus books someday. Did y'all make any resolutions?