Wednesday, October 16, 2013

An interesting experience

A couple weeks ago, I was walking my dog at about ten at night.

When walking the dog, both my mind and feet tend to wander. I meander about until I realize I've been gone awhile, and then head home. La la la. No big.

My neighborhood is perfectly safe, albeit a little odd. Mostly retail and crazy during the day, but totally quiet at night. There are long stretches of limited streetlights and no foot traffic. Deserted, desolate, and words like that.

On this night, I suddenly felt something. Not a feeling. For real. I actually *felt* something against my back directly behind me. I jumped. It was a tall, bulky man wearing a hoodie.

I knew immediately that something was wrong. But what I said was, "Oh! You startled me!"

He mumbled something that I heard as "I'm sorry." I am certain that is not what he said.

Then I laughed and said, "You have a very light tread!"

I KNOW. I totally know.

I bent over to clean up after my dog, fluttering my hands about to make clear that I had no pockets, and only a handful of plastic bags on me, And then I nattered on.

"I don't usually run into folks when I'm just out walking the dog."

"Oh Jem, your leash is all tangled!"

"Blah blah blah."

The man stuck right there with me. In my space, as they say.

Then he suddenly asked, "What kind of dog is that?"

I answered, "Greyhound." And went on to, "She's a handful. I have two more at home with my husband. Our grown sons are home and they like to hang out with them." (Umm, I have no sons, nor any other dogs.)

We stood there for a minute. And then I said, "Well, have a good night." And I strode decisively to my house. And that was that.

I like to think that I am so fucking bad-ass that I handled the shit out of that almost-mugging. But the fact is, telling my would-be robber that he startled me and had a light tread was really me being gracious. Or maybe my dog Jem is a magical protector.

I don't know. It kind of boggles my mind too.

That's all.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

I've been in a bad mood for six months

That's why I haven't blogged. Bad mood, what can I say. Not a life-changing, earth-shattering bad mood. A bunch of pebbles, but no big rocks. Just your every day type of bad mood. Pedestrian and personal. Too private to share, too boring to bother.

Still, it's a thing. It keeps me from blogging, but that's the least of it. It keeps me from being my most productive. It keeps me from exercising. It keeps me from being outgoing. It keeps me from seeing friends. It keeps me from eating right. It keeps me from being sunny.

And then all that...keeps me in a bad mood. Oh, plenty of pockets of good moods, but overall...generally bad mood. Ever happen to you? Stupid little cycle of stupid. Bah.

I mostly blame my left foot.

Sometime in December, I broke an unimportant foot bone. I don't actually know when or how, but when I finally saw the doc in late January that's what the xray said. No wonder my foot and ankle hurt.

Then in May I tripped down some stairs and wacked up my calf and foot again. Arrgh. So inconvenient, these months of limpi-ness.

It kind of makes me realize how my life (everyone's life?) is balanced precariously on the pin. One minor injury and I teeter. Geezus.

Other than my constant whining that I have a general malaise, I'll bet most wouldn't notice. I mean, my blue is everyone else's sunny. But I know it. Boy do I know it.

I'm working hard on bucking up though. And pockets of sunshine abound! Like:

I had a ladies' getaway in New York in April with my pal Allison, and we drank and strolled and drank and gallivanted our way from dawn til dusk. Swell times!

I went on many excellent and fun date nights with Sir Cardigan in Alameda, the Mission, Oakland (uptown) and more.

I made a dollhouse of the inn. Ridiculous and semi-pointless, but dang it's cute.

I made it to New Orleans to surprise my dear dear friend on her birthday. Weeping ensued. The good kind.

I have read a crazy number of really beautiful, devastating, thoughtfulsatisfying books. A little thing, yes, but certainly life-enriching and positively distracting.

I achieved Great Fame.

See? I get enough good that I ought shut the hell up. I do. And I'm doing my dang-est to shake off the grouchies. Soon, I hope.

x's and o's, yo!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

This is a collage about my personal style

I have been asked to create a small collage that demonstrates my personal style. I sort of thought, this whole dang blawg.

But then I thought it would be kind of mean to tell someone they should read the entirety of this here blawg. That's only something I do, like, on friday nights.

The thing is, I love collages. The kind you make with magazines and paste. And I love style. Duh. But, I can't see that happening...magazines have pretty pictures and all but almost never have anything that would accurately reflect my personal style. Unless there's a magazine about thrifting. Is there? There must be.

So, I think I'm just gonna stroll through this here blawg and make a collage with WORDS and SOME pictures. And, a whole lot of self indulgence.


1. I am a little bit of a freak

Plump white ladies with multi-colored dreadlocks are not shrinky violets. I've often said that it doesn't really matter what I wear, since I bring the party on my head and people don't really scroll down. Now, the dreads are such a huge part of my personal brand (and my professional brand even more so) that I can't really ever cut 'em off. Which is cool, since I don't want to.

2. I am (actually) curvy and dress in way that doesn't hide it - and often accentuates it.

I'm not using "curvy" as a euphemism for "fat" (which, still, I am). I'm actually curvy. I have large ladies and hips and my waist goes in at the middle. That is what curves are. Speaking of which, did you see this great article about media use of the word curvy? Amazing and truthful!

I am not always comfortable with my curves, but dang, I've come along way! Baby!

By the way. I NEVER used to wear belts. Now I wear them every day. Accentuates the curvy bits.

3. I wear a uniform almost every day.  

This is the eclectic pillar of my personal style, and it took me a lot of trial and error to develop it. I've talked a lot about it on this here blawg, but here's the recap...

First you take a shirt - preferably old, with writing. Then you add a skirt - preferably girly, often in a pattern, and cute. Then a cardigan or blazer. A belt. And boots. Ta-da! Outfit!

4. I treat clothes as an art project. 

This has been, and continues to be the most dang fun thing I do with clothes. Not "matching" things but, rather, finding things that complement each other in cool ways is what I mostly learned from the lovely Alice. 

I usually choose one thing I want to wear and try to find a pattern that I can repeat, or a color...something. The result is an outfit that doesn't appear to match but somehow the eye appreciates it. 

And, since I lay out my outfits for the week on Sunday nights, I'm often looking at the whole week as a canvas. No one else sees all the outfits together...but I do.
Please forgive the douchey-ness of this entry! Pretentious much?

#5..the juxtapostion
5. Give to me your leather, take from me my la la. 

I really really really love to mix styles. Lacy tights with engineer boots. Stripes with flowers. Rock-n-roll hairdo with pearls. Etc. I love the juxtaposition. It makes me happy, and it means you just never really look like anyone else (hey, I sense a theme here!). 

I think that this, and #4 above, are why I wear separates vs dresses. Dresses give me much fewer opportunities to put things together.

Over on the right...perfect example! Gold brocade fancy skirt with lace-up combat boots. LOVE.

6. Theme to the extreme (a phrase I stole from the epically stylish Allison). 

Sometimes, when I go down a (usually) kooky road, I just gotta go there entirely. That is, if I find myself wearing two or three shades of blue, I almost have to just wear six shades. Might as well. It goes for practically anything - a style, a color, an era. 

On the right...This is me as an eighties rock-n-roll madonna type of thing. Leopard skin, fishnets, plaid pencil skirt, rock shirt, a shitton of rhinestones and silver jewelry. A studded belt. This is actually one of my most repeated outfits.

7. This kind of goes without saying, but I love old things.  

Thrifted, but usually not vintage. Part of why I love old things is because I can't afford new ones! I am also cheap! And I love clothes way too much to limit myself (see: excessive personality). Thrifting allows me to have a lot without the outlay of dough.'s a super fun challenge to put things together on my own, not because some smart stylist at a store told me something worked. 

That said...I do still buy the occasional irresistible or on-sale piece at a store. 

That's it. Did I miss anything?

PS. The world is pretty sad right now. Me too.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Return of the blurry photos!

You missed my mad photo skillz, yeah? They're back. LUCKY YOU. Mostly, I've been wearing previous outfits. Nothing worth blur-o-graphing. That's good! I mean, good in that I've throttled back the thrifting. Not entirely of course. I just nabbed a sweet marching band jacket chock full of patches and letters and embroidery. $5. 

Anywho, my colleague Katie says this is one of the best outfits of the year. I told her that's a lofty claim and she'd best revisit the blawg to be sure.

  • Black cotton swingy skirt $7
  • Black cardigan with fakey pearl buttons $7
  • White plastic pop beads $1
  • Fakey pearl  earrings $2
  • Beaded white handbag $5
  • Sheer beige scarf $1
Not thrifted:
  • ModCloth beige fitted shirt with cute bow on the waist $11 (super duper sale, yo!)
  • Not Rated leopard platform triple buckle heels $20 (I KNOW) (See the close up below!)
What I would change about this outfit now that I've seen the photo:
  • A teensy bit matchy matchy. But other than that, delightful!
Total outfit cost: $54

........and check out these shoes. DANG, YEAH? I could barely walk actually but people did stop me on the street to ask about them. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

I have the crazy best-est of lives

You guys. WHAT THE FUCK. I always have so much to say, but it rarely leaves my brain. Shocking, since most people who see me every day would agree that I rarely shut up. 

I have been off, you know, LIVING. Also, not dieting. But that's another post. OR NOT. We'll just have to see.

I have been awesomingly busy with this challenging and lovely life o' mine. 

Like, one day I met this plenty amazing woman who is the mother of the artist mentioned in this post. For work. After spending an afternoon talking with her, I can decidedly say that the apple falls close to the tree, just like they say. I say this not only to namedrop (one of my most excellent skills), but also cuz I dressed HARD for her. In this outfit. And she did that thing where you assess someone's whole person and find it right on. I TRY.

And then there's the JOB. My day job. I am surrounded by really smart, hard-working, and genuinely nice people who have basically allowed me to only do the work at which I am best. Being present in meetings, thinking up fun stuff, entertaining. Etc. But, a lot of it. So my brain and heart are totally swamped.

I have a new dog. Her name is Jem. Or, as she says, JEMMMMMMYYYYYY! I still miss Cotton too much to bear. And I'm glad I have a bundle of crazy to worm her way into my heart (also my bed, geez). 

I have become obsessed by a new project. A dollhouse. Which I'm decorating to be a miniature version of my inn. Maybe I will post photos. 

Next week, one of my favorite online clothing stores is gonna come visit me and my closet with a camera and such. That'll be fun! Also weird.

Mostly, though, I'm so very grateful to have a life that IS busy and challenges me so damn much every day.