Golden Globes 2020 Exegesis

This year, I am giving out my own awards in my own categories. You can suggest your own categories if I missed any.

Most Egregious Dress: Duh, this one is a no-brainer, right? The winner is Gwyneth “please hate me” Paltrow, in as awful sheer peignoir that appears to have been shredded in the garbage disposal before she rescued it. Gwyneth is always trolling us, so by now she’s a master at it. Thank u next, Gwyneth.

Most Personally Gratifying Dress Fail: Taylor Swift, in a big floral bedspread that accentuated her round-shouldered posture and added forty years to her face. YES, let’s see more of this, Taylor!

Most Discomfiting Presence: Renee Zellwegar. I almost had to cover my eyes. From the beginning of her acceptance speech, she made it clear how much she resents her peers and critics. Extremely ungracious and neurotic, Renee lived up to her hype as super cray.

Most Unctuous Hollywood Back-Slapping: The Tom Hanks intro and speech, depicting him as god’s gift to acting as though acting itself were god’s gift to humanity. I try to avoid Tom Hanks movies and I don’t plan to forgive him for pretending to be Mr. Rogers or anyone else.

Best Dress Periodt: This Chartreuse Gucci worn by a gorgeous person I’ve never heard of (Gugu Mbatha Raw). God, this is everything.

Best Scene Stealing Red Carpet Look: Perennial winner Billy Porter. Perfection from head to toe.

Most Sickening Couple: Here, we have a tie. is it Bey and Jay? Or is it J Lo and A-Rod? It’s such a tough call. Should we give it to Beyonce just on snobbery grounds? You tell me.

Most Shameless Couple: This one goes to Noah Baumbach and Greta “homewrecker” Gerwig, sitting up front and poised to win, which, haha, they did not.

Most Tragic Dress Fail: Kerry Washington, why girl??

Most Supernatural Boobs: Another duh, Salma Hayek.

Most Starving Actress: This award goes to Nicole Kidman, in a hairline decision over Rooney Mara. Pale, anorexic, desperately hungry….just give up and have a sandwich, Nicole, and stop fucking with your face.

Ickiest Male Sexpot: Brad Pitt, looking like he had to pull himself away from a mirror to accept his award. If only he wasn’t a dope! He can never live down his years as Mr. Angelina, when he adopted all her mannerisms and called everything “grand.”

Most Attractive Male Lunatic: Joaquin Phoenix. The intensity! I am all in. Call me, Joaquin!

Joan of Arc Award: Michelle Williams. She is always suffering for Us, the people. She is so much better than us. Bow down.

Name You Have To Say, or Else: Martin Scorsese. Better yet, just Marty.

Okay, what did I leave out??

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Things I Don’t Want in 2020

I’m just going to jump in with Adam Driver.

I know he’s not the world’s biggest threat or even irritant, but I’ve been wanting to complain about him for ages.

First off, I find it hard to remember if his name is Driver or Diver. I just had to google it. I’m sick of being corrected when I say the wrong one. Second, why is he so popular? Isn’t he a guy from the Girls TV series? Why is now the leading man in so many movies?

He is too tall and his voice is annoying. It sounds like he’s speaking through a Muppet costume. He is both too much and too little. His performance in that movie about Marriage is excruciating. I just don’t want him. Is he somehow an appendage of Adam Sandler, who I obviously also hate?

Here’s my next  choice and I don’t know if there’s an actual term for this. It’s the Instagram girl with a zillion followers who appears to offer nothing more than an array of plastic surgery and cosmetic debacles. Huge boobs, gigantic lips, voluminous hair extensions, pounds of make-up, long pointy nails and fake eyelashes. What are these girls for?? I can’t tell them apart except for the two categories of hair color. The brunettes are usually exotic/ethnic looking and the blondes look like generic porn actresses.

Speaking of Instagram, I’m also sick of the positivity posts. They’re all like,

“I’ve worked so hard the last year and there have been pitfalls along the way but I’m learning to love myself more and I’m so grateful to god for bla bla bla and I know my path is bla bla bla.”

Who gives a shit? Can’t they save this for their shrink or life coach or BFF? It’s so faux-spiritual and pointless. Do they think that social media is a cheering section for them personally? I don’t even get it but make it stop.

I would like to stop seeing the term gut-health. Nothing about gut or guts. Nothing about prebiotics or inflammation. People should only discuss their digestive system with close friends and medical experts.

As a human being and a female, I don’t need to read about how women are powerful, with a list of this year’s Most Powerful or a list of women’s accomplishments. Women make up half of the world’s population so stop trying to position them as a rare population. I mean, Jesus Christ.

I don’t want any more think pieces about tribalism. We get it already!

I don’t want to hear about your best life. I don’t want to hear about optimizing anything. I don’t want to hear about micro-dosing. I DO want to hear about which strains of weed are the best for creativity or relaxing, so hit me up if you know.

I hate myself for writing “hit me up.” So many of our trendy expressions are contagious! I now say the word “ew” with two distinct syllables, “ew-uh.” But I will never, ever, describe something good as “fire.” Ew-uh!

I’m through with tracking the latest Twitter beefs. It’s exhausting. And when I try to tell someone, “guess who everybody’s mad at on Twitter!” no one wants to know.

Obviously I’m through with wellness and self-care. Everyone needs to redirect themselves to care for OTHERS! We already care far too much about our own selves. Trust advertising to persuade us that we’ve been neglecting ourselves. It’s the greatest ruse since “rinse, repeat.”

I’m planning a list of banned words for 2020, to publish at Miista. Feel free to share yours, as well as shit you don’t want any more of. Extra points if you can explain why we have Adam Driver.

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The Ballad of Icky, Smarty and Pervy

Once upon a time, there was a family whose gifted child, Smarty, started a new school. He made a new friend, Icky, who was very sweet but had a number of physical and behavioral shortcomings. He was unattractive and moody but got along well with Smarty, an extrovert who tended to be dominant with his peers.

Icky had a play-date at Smarty’s house, and was picked up by his dad, Pervy, a smarmy voice-actor with an overly familiar manner who told Smarty’s mom that she must’ve been a “helluva sexy teenager”.

Smarty spent more time with Icky, encouraged heartily by Pervy, who confided that Smarty was a good role model for the sullen Icky, who spend most of his time playing video games.

Whenever Smarty went to Icky’s house, Pervy took them out to restaurants and bought them gifts. He soon made room in a closet for Smarty’s clothes and gave Smarty a spare key to the house.

One day, alone with Mom, Pervy said that he might be able to “give her what she wanted.” Shocked, she nervously replied that she only wanted a chartreuse suede Chanel handbag. Pervy asked what that cost, and then backed off.

Smarty began to gain weight and his mom asked Pervy to stop taking him out to huge meals of barbecued ribs and potatoes. Pervy ignored her. Smarty discovered religion and Pervy found a Jewish synagogue for Jews who didn’t believe in god. Mom and Dad agreed to attend a service there, where prayers omitted the god part. Mom and Dad were atheists but wanted to let Smarty work out his own belief system.

Then, Pervy had an idea: He would have a Bar-Mitzvah alongside Smarty! WHAT?! Here, Mom stepped in and said no, that will not happen.

Meanwhile, Dad had a group of old friends who got together to play music one night a week. He brought Pervy with him once, and Pervy soon began to come on his own, installing himself as one of the groups key vocalists.

Smarty’s family was struck by tragedy, and Pervy invited him to stay with him and Icky for a month. When Mom wanted Smarty back at home, Pervy said, Well, I promised him a month. I can’t go back on my promise.

One day, Smarty was very angry with his parents and called Pervy to come pick him up. Pervy came and even though Smarty swore at him, he obediently took Smarty away.

Mom now despised Pervy. Smarty moved away and fell in love. He told Mom and Dad that he might ask Pervy to officiate at the wedding. Mom screamed, “NO! I’m not coming if that happens!”

This caused a rift between Mom and Smarty, one of many that should have healed but kept erupting.

Time passed.  Pervy still sang in the music group, using hand motions like Celine Dion. Mom missed Smarty and one day, emailed Icky to ask how Smarty was doing. Icky immediately reported back to Smarty, who angrily demanded that Mom stop contacting his friends. Icky blocked Mom on twitter.

More time passed and Pervy started a Kickstarter page for a movie he wanted to make about a log lady. He offered a grand prize of dinner with himself to the highest donor.

Go and see it if it gets released! Just don’t let him play with your kid or come to your music group.

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It’s Lesbian Stick Time! Christmas 2019

Let us all follow the Christmas tradition* of reading  The Story of the Lesbian Stick.

~

* Heartfelt atheist blessings to all you people who come here and especially you special ones who have given me so much. xo

 

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I’ve Sat Down and I Can’t Get Up!

There is now a deep indentation where I sit on the couch, not the shape of my ass but a big amorphous blob, almost a sinkhole. I can sit there for six hours if there’s enough TV to watch. I actually hate to get up and my partner enables this behavior by periodically asking if there’s anything he can get me, like cookies or chips or a hit of weed.

“Use it or lose it” is great advice for somebody else. This inertia or paralysis or whatever we want to call it has a silver lining though: my discovery of Money Heist on Netflix. It’s a Spanish series whose real title is La Casa de Papel, referring to The Royal Mint of Spain, the site of a brazen heist designed by a criminal genius called The Professor.

The Professor and the eight desperadoes he’s recruited for the heist will become your own beloved family as the show goes on for 30 addictive episodes. It’s easily the most addictive series I’ve experienced, topping Breaking Bad, with which it shares a certain perverse sensibility. Each episode ends with a cliffhanger that is fucking unbearable. You have to watch the next one, even if it’s 3 a.m.

Trying to avoid spoilers, I’ll just say that this series has EVERYTHING! Suspense, drama, romance, heartbreak, humor, politics, philosophy, art direction, heroes and villains who morph into their opposites, and plot twists that will thrill and confound you. Don’t watch a dubbed version or you’ll miss the actors’ seductive voices and those beautiful Spanish S’s. Thank god it’s been renewed for season 4!

Just to balance the enthusiasm here, let me complain about Sunday night TV,  which has turned into a wasteland of awfulness with the season finale of Succession. Just when I survived the last dregs of The Affair, which was torture, I’m now stuck with Ray Donovan and Shameless. Both of these shows have outlasted any pretense of being watchable tripe. Everyone involved with them needs to die, asap. While watching them, I feel like I’m doing penance for some obscure crime in a past life, but my husband is committed to seeing them through, so I consider it part of my wifely duties.

Plus I hate to get up.

What about you guys, recommendations or complaints?

 

 

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Thanksgiving

I went to get a pelvic ultrasound test for my latest round of hypochondria. The radiologist was a small Asian woman with a dour demeanor. “My name Tran,” she said resentfully.

We started a test with the thingy on my belly, which reminded me of the ultrasound tests you get when you’re pregnant. It was a nice feeling. I asked Tran, “Do you have kids?” and she said, “No kids. Not enough money for kid.”

Uh-oh. Now I felt sad. Here I am, a middle class white women who could afford two kids, and this poor immigrant is servicing me, so to speak, on a crappy income, unable to live the life she deserves, that everyone deserves.

“Yeah,” I said stupidly, “They are expensive!” “What are you doing tomorrow [Thanksgiving]? I asked next, hoping to cheer her up with conversation. “Sleep,” she answered tersely.

Oh god, okay. So I said, “Oh, I love to sleep too! It’s my favorite thing in the world!” She brightened up a little.

Next, I had to get undressed and she stuck the thingy up inside me. With my legs in stirrups, and the internal “discomfort”, I remembered the feeling of giving birth, the agony and the ecstasy, and it was shockingly visceral. I wanted to give birth with all my might!

But then it really started to get uncomfortable and I said OW. I asked her if she saw anything awful and she reminded me that she wasn’t allowed to say anything.

She stayed in the room while I got dressed and I asked her in a sympathetic tone when she could go home. It was around 4. She said 4:30. I said, “Oh good! It’s coming right up!” She told me I was the last patient of the day. Then she told me that it was the last day of her job.

Shit! Had she been fired? Or was she just moving on? I asked her what her plan was and she said she didn’t know. “But I am healthy, I have brain, I can do work!” she said plaintively. “I not going to kill myself!” she exclaimed, as though meaning the opposite.

Fuck! What was going on, I wondered, my brain whirling. “Of course, of course, you can get any job!” I told her. “You didn’t like working here?” I asked her. She looked down as she straightened things up. “They don’t like me. They not happy with me. Say I am mean to patients.”

Well, she was kind of mean, but that no longer mattered. I told her that she could start a new life, she was just 40 years old, not too old to have a family or do whatever she wanted. I told her about all the places I’d worked where no one appreciated me, about the time I called my boss a cunt and got fired, the fact that I could not work with people looking over my shoulder and telling me what to do. She listened intently. She asked a few questions.

Now she was smiling a little while we talked about our mutual dislike of cooking on holidays. I thanked her and said it was nice meeting her, and added, “Hopefully, I won’t die from a gigantic uterine tumor the size of a cantaloupe!”

She smiled and said, “You have nothing to worry about.”

One thing I’m good at is tricking the radiologists into telling me what they saw. You don’t get to be my age for nothing.

 

 

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Just Say “Shut Up, You Fucking Moron!”

Everyone’s in a tizzy about how to talk to politically partisan relatives at Thanksgiving, but not me! First, because I would never have a meal with a Trump supporter. Not even my last meal on Death Row, which, as everyone knows, will be a burger and fries.

Second, because if someone spoke favorably of Donald Trump in my earshot, I would not hesitate to shout, “Are you out of your fucking mind? What the fuck don’t you get?

Watching him at rallies, surrounded by drooling racist dimwits, it’s a chilling picture of a species I haven’t encountered much in real life but now know to fear and dread. I can’t imagine being face to face with this level of ignorance.

But even for family members, it is just not acceptable. I have no bandwith for excuses about “the people who feel left behind” bla bla bla.” If anyone is still okay with Donald Trump walking around a free man, there is no pass and no forgiveness. Sure, they’re stupid, sure they barely made it through high school, sure they’re incapable of reasoning and adding 2 plus two. Too bad for them.

If you’re passing the cranberry sauce and someone quotes Hannity or talks about those sneaky Dems and their secret hearings, just lean toward them and scream, “Shut up, you stupid piece of shit! You don’t deserve to vote, that’s how stupid you are!

Then, carefully smash a pie in her or her or they face. Tell them that for every immigrant and refugee in a detention facility, that’s how many centuries they will burn in hell.

If anyone still comes to Trump’s defense, you know what to do next. Upend the whole table, housewife style, and say, “I care about the fucking Constitution even if you don’t, motherfucker!” and remind them that article 2 does not mean the President can do *anything*. Just for fun, point out that fetuses aren’t people.

I mean, how hard is it to have a plan for Thanksgiving? I don’t even see the problem. Just do the right thing.

If you’re a big pussy, you can print out this handy Thanksgiving discussion placemat from Neil Katyal here.

 

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Having a Wank

Since I’m borrowing my title from Derek and Clive, I listened to this sketch for the 50 millionth time and still laughed. If you haven’t listened to this, don’t even talk to me EVER.

All I intended to do was direct you to my essay for Miista about women and sex toys. I really want to hear your feedback on this! Are you with me or am I all wrong?

Let me know. Now, back to my 3 o’clock Monday wank.

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Dynamic, Passionate, and Unique, Tho

Words continues to thrill and annoy me on a daily basis and I know you feel the same. Right now, I am creeped out anew by the word “tho,” as used on Instagram. It is not only gratuitous (” Those nails, tho.”) but the spelling is like a knife in my heart. MAKE IT STOP. So here’s a list I just came across, about words “you should never use to describe yourself.” I’m pretty sure these are all in the context of job interviews, because where else might someone claim to be “innovative?”

Here they are:

Innovative
World-class
Driven
Extensive experience
Authority
Global-provider
Motivated
Creative
Results-oriented
Responsible
Track record
Organizational
Guru
Curator
Passionate
Strategic
Collaborative

Ew! Who would use these words to describe themselves? Maybe they’re the professional equivalent of self-negating dating-app words like “eccentric” or “classy.” But wait. If you string all those words together, they might make a persuasive sales-pitch for a booty call! Try that out, mentally at least.

On another front, who is not sick of “quid pro quo” at this point? How about this phrase instead, from Virgil: sunt lacrimae rerum  (tears haunt this world).

Here’s another list of those minutely specific words we don’t have in English, like Bakku-shan, Japanese for a woman who looks pretty from behind but not from the front.

Then there is the issue of linguistics by gender, like the female use of the word ‘just.”

Finally,  let me run this by you. It’s a quote by physicist Wolfgang Pauli, after reading a colleague’s paper:

This paper is so bad it is not even wrong.

I was so amused by it that I repeated it to *someone* who did not share my delight and argued about why not for the next five hours (okay, five minutes that felt like hours.)

Please tell me if you like it, or if you don’t, using rational considerations and back-up sources. Thank you in advance, xoxo.

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It’s My Party And I’ll Cry If I Want To

Most people know at this point in social etiquette not to bark, “Cheer up!” at people who aren’t showing their back molars in a smile. Thank god that’s pretty much a thing of the past. I remember strangers informing me, even as a kid, “Things aren’t THAT bad!” as they walked past me.

But many people do find it difficult to be in the presence of sadness, not to mention grief.

Not long ago, a family member came over to visit, and was moved to share with me their wish that I could be less sad. I have so much going for me, after all!

It was a wish born of compassion. But still. Feeling aggressive, I leaned toward them and said, “Until you have seen your child in a body bag, you cannot understand what it’s like. You just can’t.” I know what a brutal thing this is to say aloud. But at times, I want to make it a teachable moment.

They were taken aback, but rephrased the sentiment to something like, “Yes, but you have to go on living.”

Humans of Earth, AREN’T I ALIVE? How alive do I have to be before you can deal with me? I walk and talk, I put on lipstick, I go to the grocery store, I walk down the street, you know?

Do I have to go on a fucking world cruise or Dancing With the Stars or what?

When I moved to my new community nearly five years ago, I was thrilled to make a new friend: An intelligent, vibrant mother of two who was funny and well-read. The perfect friend, I thought. As it turned out, she started avoiding me. When I finally pressed for a reason, she texted that I was too sad for her.

Even though all she talked about what the sexual assault of her daughter and how much she hated men. I was devastated, but I lived to tell. I’ve chalked it up to Her Problem, Not Mine, as one does.

I’m okay with being sad. Just let me be sad. I am Sad Girl. I am trying to use my sadness as an instrument for good. I’m an excellent listener, if you’re sad too. I try to turn my sadness into art, when I can.

I just read a review of a new Nick Cave album, in which the writer notes about the death of Cave’s teenage son, in 2015:

He has not put the grief behind him; he has learned from its presence.

OF COURSE he has not put the grief “behind him” for fucksake, it has only been four years, Jesus Christ. When can this kind of thinking end?

Most people never even get over a divorce, let alone such an elemental loss.

People need to be allowed to exhibit an entire range of emotions, as long as they don’t do it while driving. Let people be sad, worried, negative, silly, anxious, inquisitive, grumpy and hopeless if they want to be. Unless they ask for your help or your diagnosis, just try to accept this rich tapestry of human behavior.

Here’s a study that might convince you.

Posted in Disorders, grief, irritants, Words | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments