Thursday, January 29, 2009

You Can't Gwyn 'Em All.

It was brought to my attention this week that Gwyneth Paltrow has a blog and newsletter. I had a few concerns. First, what Gwyneth Paltrow news am I missing? Next, is there really that much Gwyneth Paltrow news? 

Answers? I am apparently missing a lot of Gwyneth news. Apparently will "Nourish the Inner Aspect". Sweet, Jesus. There are sections titled : Make, Go, Get, Do, Be and See. 

They should be titled: Cooking Dirty Hippie Food, Places You Should Visit If You Become A Millionaire Too, Stuff To Buy When You Become A Child Of Privilege, Preachy, Extra Preachy and Condescending, and Look How Cultured And Smart I Am. 

So I decided to read the last section. After an incredibly earnest opening, including just enough self-deprecation to make herself "likable", Gwyneth and her friends recommend books. 

Christy Turlington likes Hemingway and Faulker. She identifies with a Jane Austen character. Sure, I'll buy it. She writes a few coherent reviews. So, whatever.

 Aunt Louise likes War and Peace. I call bullshit. No one has ever actually read or liked War and Peace.

Gwyn likes Jane Eyre and Dostoyevsky. She writes of Crime and Punishment

"I first read this in high school and have returned to it numerous times. I think there was something about the complexity of the protagonist’s psychology that made me feel like I wasn’t the most misunderstood person in the world (which is what happens with hormonal teenagers). Besides the fact that it is incredibly written, the unsure morality was somehow reassuring. It was okay to be figuring out one’s own sense of right and wrong. In fact, it was one of life’s great endeavors."

Blah, blah, blah. I read Crime and Punishment in college. By which, I mean, I read 3 chapters and proceeded to write an 18 page paper on why I wouldn't finish it. I got an A. I refuse to believe Gwyneth got through this novel before me and repeatedly. I do believe she found the "unsure morality" reassuring. She strikes me as a bit shifty. 

Madonna likes The Bad Girl (too obvious), Shantaram (no doubt some of that red bracelet tripe) and The Time Traveler's Wife. Madonna is the only one to list books that someone might read without being forced by a freshman lit class. However she is the only one to not even attempt a review. This says a few things to us. 

"I am Madonna, do as I say and read these."
"I don't have to justify my reading to you. I'm Madonna."
"I wrote down the titles of the books my housekeeper had in her bag. I'm Madonna, you bitch."

I am completely disturbed yet crazy fascinated by these women. The idea that they have some sort of insane book club is too much. I picture them now speaking in fake English accents, exchanging weird baby name ideas and arguing over who can look more sinewy (Madge, you're winning!) I would hate every nanny-scolding, macrobiotic, Eurotrash, yoga-filled, pretentious minute of it.

Now if you'll excuse me, Gwyenth is going to teach my how to accelerate a "sluggish bowel."

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Swift Kick In The Ass

I don't normally listen to Top 40 radio. I know you do, but I am cooler than you. Occasionally, I do like to stoop and switch on the old drive time, just so I can keep up with what the kids are into. And sometimes I actually enjoy it. I mean, Britney's "Womanizer"?  Yes ma'am, you have "got my crazy".  

But this Taylor Swift shit has got to stop.  If you are going to be a vapid blond, have the decency to be hot and dance. She probably would have gone unnoticed, but then she penned and recorded "Love Story." This will not stand and line by line, here is why.

"We were both young when I first saw you."
You're like 15 now. You don't get to use the word young when you are under 25. 

"I see you make your way through the crowd, little did I know that you were Romeo."
Damn right. Little you did know. He is not Romeo, stupid, and you are not Juliet. Also, had you actually read Romeo and Juliet, you would know it was a tragedy. Not the whiny pop wish of some dead-behind-the-eyes brat.

"We keep quiet 'cause we're dead if they knew."
No you're not. No one will kill you. You will be grounded. Suck it up.
"You were Romeo, I was a scarlet letter."
 Have you ever read anything? Scarlet Letter? You're a Puritan in 17th Century Boston, who gives birth after committing adultery and struggles to create a new life of repentance and dignity? Really? Dammit, you are stupid.

"You be the prince and I'll be the princess."
Are you 12? He'll be middle management at the DMV and you'll do the laundry. Grow up.

"Romeo save me, they try to tell me how to feel. This love is difficult, but it's real."
Screw you. You are a ridiculous child. I am sure "they" do not tell you crap, princess. I had parents, they told me what to do, but who has ever been told what to feel? And this is not love, nor is is difficult, nor is it real. Don't you have Webkinz to tend to?

"Don't be afraid, we'll make it out of this mess."
What mess? You are tweens dating. You are not in a bitter family feud that will inevitably result in both your deaths.

"I got tired of waiting, wondering if you were ever coming around. My faith in you is fading."
Already! It's been three verses!  I hate you, Taylor. I hate you from my soul.

" He knelt to the ground.....I talked to your dad, go pick out a white dress."
You are not old enough to marry! And I thought your dad hated him. And hadn't you already lost faith in him? This union is doomed, not because you are star-crossed lovers, but because you are a fickle and sulking child.  

Look, I get that you want to sound smart and well read, but there wasn't a single other literary device you could use that hasn't been featured in over 200* other songs? 
(*In title alone according to iTunes, never mind every crappy song which mentions Romeo and Juliet in the lyrics.) 

I blame Taylor, but it took a lot of people to get this song this far. To hell with you all. Producers, radio stations, listeners. You obviously can't be trusted with something as simple as descent music. How can I trust you with anything else?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Any Witch Way But Loose.

An open letter to the Wiccan / Pagan Community.

Hi Guys (and gals)!

How's it going? Look, I am not a religious person, but I am super happy you have found something to believe in. However, I happened upon some of your "literature" and we need to talk. Don't get excited, I didn't seek you out from curiosity. I was waiting for a table in the bookstore's Cafe and got stuck looking at the Pagan/Wicca shelf. I don't want into your coven or circle or Thursday night tea and biscuit meeting.

Now, before you get your bloomers in a bunch, I am not here to attack your beliefs. On paper everyone's religion looks ridiculous. Even the Christian Old Testament sounds like Lord of the Rings if you weren't raised with it. 

I'm here to talk marketing.
If you guys really want to get out there and get people excited about polytheistic nature-based magic, you need some help. So here goes.

1. Stop renaming yourself. When Cassius Clay became Muhammad Ali, it was cool. Black guys who can fight get to change their names for religion. When Stephen Gunderson becomes Arsenic Moonglow, it is really, really gay. Seriously. 

2. Stop dressing like Stevie Nicks. Or Goth Barbie. Or Marylin Manson.  If you do insist on dressing like a druid at a Japanese sideshow, you cannot get mad when I stare at you and laugh. 

3. Stop writing poetry. Especially with names like "Superbly Ascending Illusion" or "I of the Mercury". What is lame when you are 13 is creepy and bothersome at 30. Jewel learned her lesson. If you set it to catchy pop music, you sound like less of a twat. But not by much.

4. Stop telling my future. Do not read my past. You do not know either. Nothing is more infuriating then some angsty man with a lip ring and guyliner saying things like "Your moon is in Jupiter and it's making you cranky" or "Maybe you upset the tree and that's why the limb crashed through your roof." Nope. I am cranky because there is a branch in my attic. 

5. Stop misspelling on purpose. Woman is spelled W-O-M-A-N. Tough break. The Christians beat you to an accepted written language. Suck it up. "Magickal" is not a word. Spell check says so. 

6. Stop being gross. I am a fan of the human body and I am not embarrassed or grossed out by normal bodily functions. If I was, I wouldn't still be married. But even I have limits. Stop making your own tampons. Stop saving the placenta for various icky things. Shave. Take a bath and remember that dreadlocks are ONLY for Rastafarians. If you refuse to accept these things, at least stop telling me about it. 

I know this doesn't apply to all of you. I know some really great Pagans and Christians and Muslims and Atheists. I'm talking to the Jerry Falwell type Pagans, the Wiccan equivalent of Promise Keepers. Stop taking yourselves so seriously. You don't have to be a stereotype. No one thinks you are mysterious or taboo anymore. We just wish you wouldn't wear so much damn Patchouli. 

Yours in Love!


Friday, January 2, 2009

You Say You Want a Resolution, Well, You Know....

The New Year is upon us. I am awesome the way I am, but you may need improvement. These are the resolutions I would like to suggest for those around me. 

Get more exercise.  I have a lot of errands. I often do not get to these, due to an incredibly busy social life. (People love me.) You could get out, see the city and get a workout by running those errands for me. Start with the dry cleaning. Thanks.

Be more responsible with money.  - Whether a cup of coffee or a beautiful skein of yarn, a gift keeps the demons at bay. By which, I mean me. I like soy lattes and green merino.

Talk less and listen more.  You going on and on about your day will only make me grumpier and therefore make it harder for me to keep my resolution to stop hitting people. Listen to me when I say "Shut up."

Spend more time with family. - You can start with mine. I can ignore them if you don't. Besides, after listening to your glaring failures and shortcomings, my mom will think I am a super hero.

Attend church more regularly. - Obviously you are in need of structure. Many people don't know this, but God is quite easily found. He is in my kitchen on Sunday mornings just past 11am. But he will only show himself and bless you if you make french toast. With bacon. 

I want you to be a better person because I care. Now seriously, shut up and flip the bacon.