No More No More
July 2009
m_christiano
Once a month I get really aggravated. No, it's not because I get my period -- I have no issues with that.

It's a free subscription comes to my home for a magazine called "More" (with the subtitle: "For Women of Style & Substance").

I don't know how I got this free subscription. I'm not a fan of the magazine, but it's like those train wreck tabloids you see when you're on line at the supermarket. You can't help but look.

More is supposed to be geared towards women 40 and older (that's me!) but More does not represent my world. Nor does it represent the world of most women I know. And it's a damn shame that More is the only magazine for women from my generation.

Back in the day when cool chicks made fun of shit rags like Cosmo and Glamour (we called them the "how to give your boyfriend a blow job" magazines) at least we had Jane, Sassy, Bitch and Bust.

Jane and Sassy are long gone; and I've kinda outgrown Bitch and Bust, as I'm sure most women who rocked it in the '80s and '90s did.

So does that leave us with? A magazine that probably has a misogynist working behind the operation because it's certainly not something women with half a brain would read and feel inspired about.

Yeah, you'll have the fluffy highlights in profiles like, "This is what 49 looks like" (with photos of pretty ladies in fancy clothes and big white smiles) and glossy celebrity features. But then read between the lines -- the lines on your very own face that More magazine wants you to be so paranoid about because even in their free giveaway section 99 percent of the products are about getting rid of wrinkles.

Even the editor writes in her personal note that readers won't buy the magazines if they put "real" women on the cover. "We've tried it," she stated. Now that's cold.

With articles that carry on about face lifts and Botox; how life is pressure and without that we'd be in our sweatpants all day; moms who worry about coming across as "cool" to their kids; and creepy ads for a chemical solution called Latisse that promises to make eyelashes grow (and in fine print mentions that side effects are itchy eyes, eye redness and hair growth may occur in other skin areas that Latisse solution frequently touches -- sounds pretty scary to me, unless you want to take a chance of becoming a werewolf and having hair growing on your face if you accidentally spill the solution!) But I think what More's consumers would probably worry most about is that lashes will gradually return to their previous appearance if discontinued. That would probably be their worst nightmare.

And every year they have a beauty search contest. The winner is always an entrepreneur with Botox and pseudo bee stung lips (but never a waitress with natural beauty).

By now you get the picture.

So when this monthly "friend" comes to visit me, I go into a fit of rage and say, "Dammit, I'm going to start my own cool magazine for women over 40, even if I have to bind it with staples and hand it out on street corners!" 

My over-40 female celebrities would be people like Patti Smith.

I'd have over-40 beauty experts that actually worked for their youthful looks via raw foods, facial exercises,  or yoga.

Ads would be for organic foods and beauty products made from natural ingredients that don't test on animals.

The over-40 beauty search contest would only be open to single women (without partners) who make $40,000 or less and could use a magical break in their lives.

Maybe even a nude feature -- no airbrushes allowed -- to illustrate, yeah, maybe she's not perfect, but her imperfections are. Because she has been around the block, perhaps, but she knows how it is to be honest, real, poetic, satisfied, deep, loving and seasoned.

And that's what would make a man say, "More, more, more! " 

(no subject)
July 2009
m_christiano

Gotta love the little things in life.

I'm in the kitchen making tea. "Sittin' on the Dock of the Bay" is on the radio.

Just as Otis Redding starts whistling, the tea pot starts whistling. Too funny.


Name in Vain
July 2009
m_christiano
It's pretty baby-ish when people fight and resort to name calling.

However, when it comes to cyber fighting, I think I'd rather be called a bitch, a douche-bag or a piece of shit rather than have my real named spelled out.

To have your full name out there on the world wide web, while being accompanied with a threat and/or lies and gossip, truly hits below the belt. No wonder such behavior is called "cyber-bullying." 

But in the grand scheme of things, it's all very small.

One of my favorite sayings is, "Talking trash about someone doesn't make them look bad, it makes YOU look bad."  No matter what rumor is spread about a person, the person who was attacked OWNS the glory! 

Why? Because of the mere fact that he/she evoked some sort of jealousy in the person who started the gossip.

Think about it.

Over 30 years ago, one of the most absurd rumors I heard was that Rod Stewart had to get two gallons of sperm pumped out of his stomach.

Thirty years later, we still hear Rod Stewart on the radio. But do we know anything about the numb nut who started the goofy rumor? No. The person is good as zero, just as all trouble makers are. They all basically have the same traits: low self-esteem, jealousy and attention deprivation.

The only way they can get noticed is by hurting someone who is actually -- NOTICEABLE! 

So when someone recently tried to threaten me by saying she knew "secrets" about me,  I referred to the old Jane's Addiction album title: "Nothing's Shocking."

Unless I molested a child or killed someone's grandmother, you have nothing on me that is worth gossiping about. It's all recycled bullshit. What have I done that hasn't already been done by some rock star? You better make something up, bitch, because in reality I'm pretty damn boring! 

If you want to (again, using a Jane's Addiction reference, I've been listening to them a lot lately), DIG SOMETHING UP -- that judgmental hypocrites can hate me for, true or not -- feel free.

True friends will stand by me anyway, no matter what, while enemies are just looking for an excuse to hate me. They are just waiting for it, like a kid with his nose pressed against the candy store door. So why not give them the excuse they want sooner, rather than later.

The faster I know someone doesn't like me, the easier my life will be because I don't have to second guess or give the benefit of the doubt.

Too bad a certain coward didn't have balls to let me know sooner though. It was just held it all in all these years, waiting for the sacred moment to erupt.

But that's okay, I've never been a fan of the ball-less anyway -- so we are even! 

Mark Twain is quoted as saying, "If everyone likes you, you're doing something wrong." 

Or an even better one -- when Johnny Rotten was asked what he'd do if he suddenly was accepted, he said, "I'd find a way to get banned again." 

Talk is cheap.

People can yak about you all they want but it doesn't take money out of your pocket; it doesn't make you fat; and it certainly doesn't take away loved ones who adore you unconditionally.

It's a win/win situation for me! 

RIP Alex Chilton
July 2009
m_christiano
One night in the early 1990s I was driving along Routes 1 & 9 with a friend.

We had just returned from a movie and had nothing else to do except blast the radio and while taking in Roadside New Jersey, in all its splendid glory.

Night time. Grave Yards. Strip Clubs. Diners. And free-form radio.

I was having the time of my life.

A song came on the radio that thrilled the hell out of us.

The lyrics went like this: "Capricorn, Sagittarius, Aquarius. What's your sign girl? Is it compatible to mine?"

I looked at my friend and we started cracking up. Especially during the part that said, "Miss Leo, you foxy lion-heart" (both knowing that was my sign).

Each lyrical sentence was funnier than the last, as we listened carefully amongst our hysterics. That song made a simple drive seem like the night of the century.

We listened to the song in its entirety and waited patiently until we found out who it was.

ALEX CHILTON

The next day I immediately went out and got the CD with that song.

Also learned from another friend Alex Chilton was in a band called Big Star. I got their stuff too. (One of Big Star's songs is performed by Cheap Trick as the theme song of "That '70s Show").

He also sang in a band called The Boxtops that are best known for their hit, "The Letter." I heard that song a lot on the radio, no need to buy it.

But best of all, was a song called "Alex Chilton" by The Replacements (my good friend Dave hipped me to this gem!) So many other bands covered his stuff.

Whenever I discover something I like, I work backwards until I collect everything, no matter how many years it takes to do so on a middle class salary.

Alex Chilton was one of those classics.

Bless his soul, may he rest in peace. Bless his heart for all the music he made that I've loved and have yet to discover. He made me so happy!

Why Valentine's Day is more than a Hallmark Holiday
July 2009
m_christiano
Tomorrow will be the day a lot of people fear, according to my friends and from what I've been reading in the media.

Guys fear they will not live up to the expectations of their wives because everything is so expensive.

Single ladies feel left out if they are not paired up like Noah's Ark.

People are throwing anti-Valentine's Day parties.

It's really sad that "Valentine's Day" has become a dirty word just like "Christmas" has ("Christmas" is replaced with "Holiday" or else you are politically incorrect).

Me, I've always enjoyed it, whether I was in love or not.

Perhaps it's my upbeat nature, but the first Valentine's Day I remember could have been a real disaster.

I was still in grade school and decided to send a Valentine's Day card to every kid in the class, both boys and girls. The girls liked the cards, but boys still considered us yucky and all my pretty little cards were made into paper airplanes by the boys. I did not let that discourage me from enjoying Valentine's Day, as I knew I had candy waiting for me at home from my Grandma.

One of my favorite Valentine's Days, I was a teenager and I didn't have a boyfriend. Johnny Thunders was playing at the Peppermint Lounge in NYC. I still remember that ad, "It wouldn't be Valentine's Day without Johnny Thunders." It wasn't Christmas without him either, as he was always playing somewhere in 1980. And so I started my tradition of non-traditional Valentine's Days. While most young girls liked getting gold jewelry and flowers from their boyfriends, I never had a problem getting records. My Valentine's Days were always ultra cool and to this day, I've kept the tradition.

Four years ago, I hooked up with my love Dennis in the month of November and we were in love from the get go. By the time Valentine's Day came along, there was nothing more he could do to prove how much he loved me because I just knew his true feelings from day one.

So I came up with a clever idea. Let's not make Valentine's Day about us, let's make it about other people.

We spent our first Valentine's Day together at a Gay Right's Rally for Gay Marriages.

Here we are, a straight couple, supporting couples that did not have the same rights as we did. We held hands, tightly, as we listened. I smiled gently, at anyone who looked my way, hoping that my positive energy would make someone's day and my support would mean something.

The magic of doing something for other people in an unselfish way, to me, is what Valentine's Day is all about.

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