Tag Archives: Arlene Dahl

Some Glam Geek Thoughts on The World Series

No where in any of my books does it say what sports team a girl should root for, but if I was going to guess, I’d say that Arlene would suggest rooting for your husband’s team.  Since Ian doesn’t watch sports (this is fine with me) I guess I’m safe from having to choose.

My last boyfriend, Aaron, like the Buffalo Bills and the Montreal Expos, now the (Washington Nationals) because he enjoyed things that had no chance of working out (i.e. our relationship).  And since he had this annoying habit of completely abandoning me while he watched games (especially when he would drag me over to a stranger’s house and then ignore me while I tried to make small talk with a bunch of other abandoned girlfriends I’d never met), I’ve developed a healthy dislike for sports and a fantastic ability to make conversation with strangers.

Now Mike, wonderful Mike, is a die-hard Yankees fan.  Like, the kind of guy who wouldn’t date a girl who WASN’T a Yankees fan, even though I half-heartedly tried to set him up with my friend Melissa in TX.  And part of his being a Yankees fan means he HATES the Red Sox.  I’ve never had a man love me with the passion that Mike has for hating the Red Sox.  I don’t think I’ve ever hated anyone as much as he hates the Red Sox, and I can get pretty angry. Like at James Franco.  Goodness, I just hate his smug, stupid face!

Anyways, I just can’t get behind the Yankees. I don’t know what team Mr. W roots for, but both Matthew and a former professor of mine who’s company I greatly enjoyed are both Sox fans, so my inclination is always to cheer for them if they’re playing and I happen to notice/care.  Mike, if you’re reading this (and I know you are) I am sorry.  If there were two different teams in the World Series, I wouldn’t even care, but since it was the Sox, I had to root for them.  And by “root for” I mean “noticing the score in the next day’s paper and thinking, “Oh, Matthew/My Professor will be happy’ and then carrying on about my day, because sports scores have no other effect on my life.”

Thus concludes our discussion of baseball.  Let us never speak of it again.

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On Having It All And Nothing At All

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Today I put on a cute outfit, went to the dentist and had three cavities filled, scrubbed the upstairs bathroom (full), cleaned the downstairs bathroom (half) vacuumed all the rugs, swept everything, laundered the linens, dusted, laundered the clothes (three loads), washed dishes, folded the clothes, made dinner, participated in my local government while simultaneously being at my job, laundered bath mats and updated my company’s website.

I had it all!  Work! Career! Man! Home! Clean teeth!

And it all kind of sucked.

I felt so alone.  Everywhere I turned, someone was snarking, either directly at me or in my direction.  I sat through an hour-long meeting where a woman shouted about bags of leaves on the curb, zoning laws, and possibly some combination of the two.  I sat patiently while Ian sulked about the car even though his sulking makes my guts rot from anxiety.  I sat patiently while my father-in-law ranted about banks and how too many people destroy old beautiful homes.  And I did this all without screaming, “Shut up, shut up, SHUT UP!” because I am a lady.  But inside, I’m pretty sure I’m developing an ulcer from the constant stress of trying to make everybody happy.  Because if I don’t sweep, the house won’t get cleaned.  If I don’t cook, everybody eats garbage in front of the TV.  Being a reporter means going where the news is, whether it’s a city council meeting or a murder scene, so I am constantly on high alert, waiting for the phone to ring.

My boss, Jim, remarked the other day that I try too hard to be helpful, which often shields other people from blame and piles it on my doorstep.  This is very true.  Because I’ve learned that if I don’t try to fix it, I get blamed by the party I’m shielding, and if it doesn’t actually get fixed, I get blamed by the original party.  It’s like being the middle child at work and at home.  It’s like being asked to do sorcery.

Arlene would say to grin and be pleased that I have a job and a home and a man to take care of (in my case, two).  But f*** if I don’t want a day where no one snarks at me, where someone helps me carried my load, where I’m not asked to constantly asked to explain away or shoulder what feels like the entire world.

REDHEAD UPDATE: It washed out.  It’s barely noticeable, so I’m going to try it again!  Fingers crossed, glam geeks.

Finally, autumn!  Fall is my favorite season; once you get a job and have to wear office clothes instead of short shorts and micro-sundresses, summer doesn’t seem that much fun…but fall, that’s when I can REALLY show off the good stuff! Leggings, boots, jackets and hats, HURRAH!  And layering, layering, LAYERING!  It’s much more fun to experiment when there are multiple pieces involved and not just one sundress and some sandals.

Plus, it’s what Ian likes me best in–soft sweaters, cozy tights, all looking sweet and comfortable.  In the summer, I like to feel like a seductress with my long legs and high heels, but in the fall, I turn into Manic Pixie Dream Hipster.  I bought a dress printed with cat faces.  I wore flats ON PURPOSE.  And he LOVED it.  I might , just might, be getting the hang of this “impress your man” thing.

But it’s a look I can rock, and it’s a look that men seem to like.  It gives the appearance of low maintenance, charm and quirk.  Men all say they like high heels, until they want a girl to be able to walk more than ten feet.  The only man who ever hated my Doc Martens, well, let’s just say he’s not around anymore.

So As it Turns Out…

I took Arlene Dahl’s hair quiz again, and it turns out, I’m actually a redhead! Impulsive, vibrant, affectionate and proud–yes, that sounds about right!

This isn’t my first redhead rodeo.  In college, I went as Jessica Rabbit for Halloween, and I loved the spray-in dye so much that I went right to a salon and had it done permanently!  Apparently it was a hit, because Catch confessed a few years later that he to stare at a “beautiful redhead” across the dining hall, but never had the guts to approach me (until I was a brunette, that is!).

It’s been awhile since I dyed my hair and I’ve only ever had one bad experience with it, when I dyed it Bettie Page black and looked like a hipster idiot.  It took two weeks of cheap shampooing to strip out the color enough to dye over it, and I never tried THAT again!

But the grays I inherited from my dad have started showing up again, so I bought some “true red” and dyed my hair the other night (while skipping out on the first part of the Burn Notice series finale, since I am very sore at Michael Weston).  It gave me nice highlights, not as red-red as I had hoped, but even in that first night, I felt a little more daring, a little sexier….

Dare me to go redder?  Or maybe even . . . . blonde?

(Pictures didn’t show up well–will post some tomorrow)

Hair Affair

“Psychologically, the brunette is cool and logical.  Emotionally, she’s dynamite.” Arlene Dahl, Always Ask a Man.

My sisters Hilary and Laura were beautiful blondes, like my mother.  I was always envious of them, with their halos of fair curls, while my locks looked like wood paneling.

But it was my older sister Shaun (and movie stars like Geena Davis and Carrie Fisher) who taught me how to be a brunette.  Shaun, as I’ve said before, was (and is) a knockout.  As I got older, I began to embrace my dark hair, and Arlene says that brunettes are the “most sensational”  My dark hair and pale skin have always accompanied my “look” very well, whether it was dramatic goth girl or funky hipster chick.  

Ian gave me one of Arlene’s hair personality quizzes and, sure enough, I was a brunette. Animal magnetism and the brains of a chess player, a vamp, an adventuress, an eternal siren who always gets her man.  I like the sound of all that!

But check in tomorrow, because everything is about to change….

Flirting in the Digital Age

Practice the art of flirtation, but save the advance techniques for THE man” Arlene Dahl, Always Ask a Man.

I think I have gone backwards.

In nine months of trying to become a glamorous flirtatious sex-pot housewife, I somewhere got turned around and became a blithering idiot in too-tall heels.

I have always, always been able to get male attention whenever I wanted.  I had a way with a glance, a head-turning outfit, a clever remark in class.  I’m not the prettiest girl in the world, but if I set my sights on a guy, more often than not, he ended up mine.  (It took me three years to get Ian, but he was well worth the wait) and even now, I continue to practice my charm because, well, it’s fun.  Almost everyone likes to be innocently flirted with–NOT HIT ON–but given a little charm and attention from a stranger. 

So let’s say there’s this man.  (We’ll call him Mr. W to protect his identity.)  We had a conversation on Twitter, as people do, and nothing much of it.  But lately, he’s been tweeting to me, with a darling nickname, telling me that I am witty and well-read.  My immediate reaction to seeing these tweets was not coyness or charm, but immediate sweating (I do not sweat ever), followed by intense panic and layered with dizzy flattery.  My transformation into Liz Lemon is complete.

Arlene and Helen and all the other charm-stars out there did not write about digital flirting, so we modern ladies have no guide.  The general idea seems to be send a topless/nude selfie, which I’m not going to do.  Those are advanced techniques, far too forward for this interaction. It’s not that type of flirting.  There is no end goal or sex or marriage, just two people engaging in a little banter.  It’s important to understand the end game of any flirtation and respond accordingly.  A smile begets a smile.

Flirting in the digital ether is especially difficult because there are a thousand ways to read a sentence.  What might be construed as flirting could be just an innocent answer, or an innocent answer may be seen as sarcasm.   Aggressive techniques take over to make sure the message gets across, so charm and subtly–the fun parts of flirting, if you ask me–get lost. 

So I waited a bit before tweeting back.  I tried to be as charming and darling as possible.  I continued our conversation and, in accordance with Arlene’s suggestion about making the conversation about him, asked him what he liked.  He responded, very friendly.  It is not a love for the ages (he doesn’t even formally follow me) but seeing “Mr. W has responded to your tweet!” pop up in my email still gives me a giddy little thrill. . . after the sweating has worn off, of course.