Friday, July 24, 2009

Hobo Ladies, Cholas and Natalie Wood

There is a hobo lady in my neighborhood that fascinates me. Not enough to engage her in conversation. Hobos are scary.

She lives outside the masonic temple on Vermont and without fail looks like a million bucks. She is always in pristine white and has bleached blond hair with a perfect blow out. Never a fly-away. Never a root. And she's a hobo. She makes me feel bad about myself.

Today when I saw her she waved to me with her perfectly manicured red nails. Like we were friends. But we're not friends. I have no hobo friends to speak of. I'm a snob that way. It could have been a pity wave. And hobos shouldn't pity me. That's just pathetic.

In so many ways I'm unfair to my husband but I think the number one way is this. When I married him almost 7 years ago, I was pretty adorable. I was fit and put together. Then I started making babies. It's been three days since I brushed my hair. Also, I posses what is commonly referred to as "the mask of pregnancy." A skin pigmentation problem that makes it look like I have a moustache. Also, I have a moustache. My sweet husband never fails to tell me how beautiful I am but I'm not totally brain dead. Nor am I blind. Hobo ladies take better care of themselves than I. Still, most of the time I look in the mirror and think I look just like Natalie Wood. Which I don't. But I think do. I have warped personal image issues.

I decided today would be the first day of the rest of my life. Yesterday was also the first day of the rest of my life but I was too tired to do anything about it. I would surprise my husband with the new me. The new me is similar to the me of seven years ago; cute, put together and blown out, only verging on morbidly obese.

The problem is this. More than my desire to look good is my desire to save a buck.

And it's just a blow dry and a wax. Surely Fantastic Sam's or Super Cuts would do the trick. Fast, cheap and good enough.

I chose Super Cuts. There is something creepy to me about the name Fantastic Sam's. Who is this Sam? What's so fantastic about him? I like a store that tells you what you are getting up front. A Super Cut. A Whole Foods. A Burger King. Clever names are wasted on me.

I called ahead. No appointment needed. Blow out. $25. Upper lip wax. $10. Done and done.

The Super Cuts in my neighborhood is on the corner of Sunset and Hillhurst. I assumed that the hobo patronized this salon as it was walking distance from her "home. If it was good enough for her, then it was good enough for me.

I walked in and it seemed cleanish. It did have an odd odor. Pollo Loco and vomit.

I was greeted by Jose, a Latino male that walked the gay line between cowboy and fetish slave. He asked if I was interested in the special hair serum. I said no thank you. Behind him was a sign. "If we don't ask you if you want the special hair serum, your visit is free." I cursed the day he mentioned the special hair serum.

Jose then asked if I wanted a wash. A wash is a given at any salon. At Super Cuts, it's $15 extra. I went with it. I needed a wash and justified the splurge. Jose asked if I wanted conditioner. Not fancy conditioner. Not the SERUM but plain old regular conditioner. Another $5. I did the math. Not easy for me. I realized I was up to $45 for a blow out. And I'm at Super Cuts. I couldn't justify it. I passed.

Jose spent the next hour and a half blow drying my hair. In the end I looked like Selena, the tragically slain Tejana super star known for her crossover hit "I Could Fall in Love With You." He had styled my hair around my face "framing it," he said, to help make me look thinner.

Jose asked me if I liked the new me. Had I been a chola my answer would be simple. But I'm not a chola. I'm a lady who looks eerily similar to Natalie Wood. But not at all.

I decided against the lip wax. The odor was getting to me and I needed to get home to Van.

Jose walked me to the cash register. He is also the cashier. He's multi-talented. He asked for $65. Now, I'm no genius but I'm also not completely inept. It wasn't adding up. He explained. It's $25 for "short hairs." For "long hairs" like mine it's double.

I learned two very important lessons today. 1: When you like someones hairstyle ask them where they go even if they are a hobo lady and you are scared of them. And 2: You get what you pay for. Except at Super Cuts where they rape you slowly, cruelly, making you watch the transformation from shlubby stay at home mom with avocado in your hair to chola.

I came home, rewashed my hair for free and placed it in its "happy place." High atop my head, tangled in a bun with a bobby pin holding back fly-aways. And I swear to God, I look just like Natalie Wood.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Gyming it

I hate a gym. There is nothing I hate more. I hate people who love working out. I despise trainers and people who dedicate their lives to fitness. When someone says they majored in health sciences I judge them. Harshly.

Yes. I'm a bit overweight. Granted, I'm pregnant, again, for the second time in a year , but I think I 'm judgmental enough to call myself fat.

So you can imagine my shock when I found myself in a gym today. Loving it. Wanting more.

As The Beastie Boys blared from the speakers, I thought, somebody finally got it right. Now this is a workout. I felt thinner. I felt healthier. I looked at my workout partner and felt sorry for him. He doesn't have my physical prowess. My strength, my balance.

My work out partner is my 14 month old son Van and today was our first day of Fit For Kids; A Children's Gym.

Also working out with us were Oscar, Walker, Henry, Louis, Adam, Eugene, Samantha, and Steve. Steve is an ass. The rest of the children were tolerable.

Steve is 20 months old. Steve is bald. Red, I learned, is not his color. Steve has a giant head and has yet to master the art of walking. (Van started walking at about 10 months, not to brag.)
When we gathered in the workout circle to do deep knee bends, Steve ran up to me and close-fisted punched me in the face. His father thought that was funny. Steve's father is also an ass.

Steve's father brought along his 50-something year old brother. Steve's uncle, we'll call him Bob, is also an ass. He came dressed in gym shorts, workout tee and bandanna. He sat on the mats gyrating to the Beastie Boys and creeping Van and me out. At first I thought he was doing it to entertain the children. He was not. He was entertaining himself. I'm 80% positive he is a pedophile. ( See earlier post titled: Laying to Rest Michael Jackson. Many similarities.)

Van's favorite machine was the baby zip line. Flying across the room in a little bucket. He couldn't get enough. The other children cried. I suppose my child is just exceptionally brave. Yes he screams and cries when you turn on a hair dryer, but that is completely understandable. Hair dryers are scary.

At Fit for Kids, the trainers don't make you feel unworthy or unfit. In fact, Tiffany, the main trainer, could stand to lose a few.

At one point Tiffany brought out jumpy horses. The kids were encouraged to chose one of the multi-colored horses and ride away.

Steve chose a pink jumpy horse while Van chose a blue one. I looked at Steve's ass of a father and said with a shrug, "Pink's my favorite color too." Ass.

Van was by far the cutest child in the class to Samantha. Samantha is a fox, but a bit of a cry baby and most likely will end promiscuous if her parents continue to dress her in inappropriate mini skirts. She has big blue eyes and short blond hair. She has a round face that could pose a problem in her teen years.

I did find the plank walking a little challenging. Also, I thought it was rude that parents weren't allowed on the jumpy horses. But all in all an enjoyable workout.

I came home and had some chocolate cake because I deserved it.

I will return next week.

In the words of workout guru Jane Fonda, MAKE IT BURN.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Laying to rest Michael Jackson. A proud child lover and an American hero.

What am I watching? Really. What am I watching? They closed down TWO FREEWAYS.

Ten minutes until the The View starts and I swear to God, if Michael Jackson's funeral procession and memorial preempts it, well, I don't know what I'm going to do.

I was raised on Michael's music. Thiller? Come on. The best. Bad? Even better. Man in the mirror? His best work. But that's just music. And the music didn't die from an overdose. A freak did.

Why is the world shocked over Michael's death? This was totally expected. The man had half a face. Weighed 80 pounds. Turned white. Potentially had sex with young boys. I mean, really, this is shocking? Cause it's not. So get over it and let me watch The View.

It's as though everyone forgot about Michael's child molestation trial a few years back. He was accused of pedophilia, for the second time, and was let off. THAT was shocking. THAT was disgusting. THEN, I cried. Not now.

Really, Justin Timerlake? Jennifer Hudson. Brooke Sheilds? Nelson Mandela? Really? All of you?

It's 10 a.m. and big The View. Instead Charles Gibson is hosting "Remembering Michael Jackson." Charles Gibson? That's embarrassing. I think he knows it.

Ok, let's do that. Let's remember Michael.

Michael Jackson was a sad, sad African American, black? African American? whatever, boy who was abused by his bully of a father. He made friends with a rat named Ben. He made a few albums as a black man (African American man?) and then he went crazy. He chopped his nose off. He got chin and cheek implants. He bleached his skin white. He moved to Neverland.

He bought a chimp and named him Bubbles. Sometimes he slept in a coffin. Other times, he shared his bed with young boys. Like, really young boys. He served them "Jesus juice." He was accused of making sweet love to these boys. He paid their families off. It never went to trial. He married Elvis Presley's daughter. They made-out on live television. The world took a collective vomit. He continued to share his bed with young boys. He "married" a semi-obese nurse from his dermatology office and proceeded to have two white children with her. He named them Prince Michael and Paris Michael. And they were white. Hmmm? Really? White children? Then he divorced the semi-obese nurse. Michael was accused of making sweet love to more young boys but was found innocent.

He had more plastic surgery, then denied it. He had yet another child with an anonymous woman whom he claimed was black. He named this white child Prince Michael the Second, but called him Blanket. Naturally.

He kinda disappeared for several years, then, this year announced his come back tour.

Now he's dead. The end. Boo Hoo.

For the past week I've watched nothing but Michael Jackson videos and montages. Not because I want to, but because there is nothing else on television and I'm too lazy to not watch television.

So, I guess my rant is more of a question to all of you out there. What are you mourning? The music survived. The dancing lives on. The videos, still there. I dare you to name one song Michael Jackson has written in the past 5 years. You can't do it. His death robs us of nothing.

I've just learned that Barbara Walters is at the memorial service for Michael sitting with Joe Jackson. Are you friggin kidding me? So basically, this rant...all for nothing. The View was never going to be on today.

As a mother of a young boy and another one on the way, I feel like the world is a little safer without Michael. And sure, we still disco-dance to Michael's music. My son gyrates uncontrollably when I play PYT. I still find the word's of Black and White beyond poignant. I remember and honor the music, not the man.

"Heal the world. Make it a better place. For you and for me and the entire human race."