Showing posts from July, 2005

The Dawning of the Age of Defiance

So for the past couple of days, I have been wondering where my son went. The normally cheerful, bright, and enthusiastic young man I have come to know and love has been replaced. Replaced by a snivelly, whiny, drama king. We had the Raffi CD on, like we do all the other six days of the week, and usually he and I sing along together. Along came Hubba-hubba into the room and decided to join the chorus. Immediately, Mr. Personality's face scrunched up, turned an alarming shade of purple, and the fat tears began to flow instantaneously. If I hadn't been so taken aback, I would have admired the speediness of the transformation. He managed to choke out, "DON'T SING! I'M SINGING!" Hubba-hubba stopped immediately. This however, did not put an end to the drama, and Mr. Personality sobbed into my pajamas for a good five minutes that his father so unfeelingly wanted to sing "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" with him. He has taken a shine to demanding thin

Fake is In

So here in LA, people have always tried to look as if they were born perfect. Of course they weren't and it used to be a few years back, that when you had anything on your body altered, the most important thing about the improvement was that it looked "natural." If you got your hair colored, it should be all different interwoven colors, mimicking the shade variations of real hair. If you got a boob job, (unless you were in the porn industry, which is more people than you would think) it should have looked like a gentle enhancement, not large rounds of fruit residing in your otherwise bony chest. Lately I have noticed that trend, at least in the more monetarily gifted circles, is totally dead. It is now cool to let everyone know that not only do you have money, you have enough to pay to have everything wrong with you fixed. Hair? Well the hottest thing right now is to have two-tone hair. Usually it is a platinum blond on top, and then a dark brown or black on the bo

My Secret Garden

So when I first began this blog last November, I decided to keep it on the down-low. I didn't know how I was going to feel about the entire project, so I figured if it turned out that I was churning out nothing but boring drivel, at least I would be the only one to witness it. I did not inform my family, or friends, and I almost didn't even tell Hubba-hubba. I told myself, "Gina, this is just a creative excercise. You love writing, you always have, so what could be better than writing your own little opinions in an essay format? Even if no one ever reads it but you, that is ok." Then I began writing. I told only a very few friends, and still didn't tell my family. Those of you that read this blog know that I don't use this blog as an outlet for family-related angst. But I was trying to figure out the other day why I, who have no problems announcing to them a million personal issues, still haven't told them. I think it is because I share so much with m

The So Far Futile and Seemingly Never Ending Quest

So a while back, I wrote about the postcard that was sent to me from AC and Cuppa . Inspired by the generosity and goodwill of my Canadian neighbors, I solemnly vowed to AC that I would return a postcard in kind . I thought to myself, I live in freakin' Southern California! I am 15 minutes away from Disneyland on a good freeway day! I am 30 minutes from the beach! I will have absolutely no problem finding a postcard! I will have to practically fend off all the inferior postcards, and it will be a wrenching decision over which one best shows our state in all its glory! Ha. I have searched high and I have searched oh-so-low. I cannot for the life of me find a postcard. I think part of the problem is that it is the height of tourist season, and so we usually avoid the touristy areas like the plague at this time of year. Why go to Disneyland when it is hotter than Hades and I will have to join the lemming-like flow of Alabama natives who don't know where they are going or

Public, Private, or Home?

So the other day I was hanging with my family. As my sister is a teacher, the subject rolled around as it often does to education. I mentioned that I think kids take way too many tests nowadays, and that I felt it is getting in the way of learning. As vague as that sounds, that is how I feel. Now my sister happens to agree with me on this score, and said it was just a "fad" in education right now to test so much, and that it would last until a new one came around. My sister sees herself as the de-facto authority of Mr. Personality's education, and has told me that if he ever does poorly in reading, she is going to sit down and have a long talk with him. While it is touching that she cares about him so much, it is also a little bit annoying. We have had many conversations like this, and from my perspective, it seems there are quite a few fads that school districts try out, usually just to discard them. For example, phonics was used a long time ago when teaching childr

Saturday Soapbox

So we went to the beach yesterday, and like a complete and utter fool, I let myself get sunburnt. Oh, there was no shortage of sunscreen, everyone else was all lathered up, but I actually forgot. Think of any derogatory comment you want about what an idiot I was to forget sunscreen, and I will heartily agree with you. Gina is hot. Where Gina lives, in inland Orange County, is hot. Gina hears a lot from other people how dang hot it is everywhere else, and so Gina's rather simple mind wandered to global warming . Now let me begin by saying that I absolutely believe that all the crap we release into the air is has some kind of effect on something , I am not scientist enough to spout off about CO2 levels and coral bleaching. But I am not fool enough to think that we can go about releasing tons of chemicals and goodness-knows what in the air for decades, if not hundreds of years, and think that it all just "goes away." Anybody that has taken basic science knows that our



The Record-Holder

So if you think it is hot where you are, try checking out this place . I know that when people think of California, they usually do not think of its deserts, but they are an integral part of our state and its history. I have visted Death Valley once, although I was younger and I don't remember a whole lot. I do remember stark, vivid landscapes that pracically defy imagination. Deserts have an entirely different feel to them, they often seem otherworldly. And anyone who has ever watched National Geographic knows that underneath the seeming barrenness lies an extremely large and delicate ecosystem. I encourage you to check out the site, it is full of interesting facts and photographs. I think that everyone should visit the desert, at least once.

For Your Viewing Pleasure

So I took a cue from a comment of Tracy's and decided to list my favorite men. Hubba-hubba teases me that I think everyone is good looking, and in a way, that is true. I can usually find something attractive about almost anyone. But there are really only a few that invite my drooling on a consistent basis. This post took hours of torturous research into finding photos of my celebrity crushes. Good grief, it was hard, but for you my friends, I will do anything . Christian Bale - Saw him in Batman Begins, and I am a sucker for a square jaw and nice cheekbones. Ewan McGregor - I thought he was just wonderful in Moulin Rouge, and I haven't looked back since. Matthew McConaughey - Ok, this guy is just hot. I don't care about the naked bongo drummning incident, have you seen this guy's abs? Matt Damon - Just a cutie pie! The fact that he is a great actor doesn't hurt either. Ralph Fiennes - He had me at "The English Patient." And I am also a sucker for c

Bifocals Not Required

So we have been on the go for the last week or so, as my cousins (aged 16 and 12) from Arizona are in town, staying with my sister. We went shopping, we went to the beach, we hung around and ate pizza, and we went to the county fair. The county fair was interesting, as I was looking for signs from the 16 year old that she was mortified to be with her aunt, her old cousins, and her younger sister. But, she seemed pretty blase about the whole thing. With her, at least in this particular stage, it is all about the blase. I don't know if it is an unwillingness to show her more immature side to the world or what, but she is an expert at the impassive mask. Not in a bad way, it is just hard to gauge what she is thinking. She went on a ride, and she allowed herself to break into laughs and happy smiles. But the instant the ride stopped, plop , the mask was firmly in place. She couldn't be any more different than me, whose face is a completely open book to anyone caring to read i

"You're Not Gettin' Any of This"

I recently refilled my hummingbird feeder, and I noticed a hummingbird who has been sitting on the wire holder the entire morning. I mentioned it to Hubba-hubba who replied, "Sure, if you had a stash of crack like that, you'd be guarding it, too."

Too Hip Now

So I just loaded up my new iPod today. I am so hip and with it now that I can't stand myself. Actually, I was fumbling around with it for a while, as it is the really cheap one that has no screen to tell you what the heck it is doing. It just has different colors that pop up to indicate the status. Or don't, in my case. I am listening to it as I write, and I am beginning to think that I won't be able to do that anymore, because three times now I have stopped writing to rock out to a song. That is the big pitfall of the iPod, in that all the songs loaded onto it are presumably your favorite songs, thus you should constantly be rocking out. You should be passing out from the rocking out, you have so many good songs in a row. Music affects me. Greatly. If I am having a bad day and a really good song comes on, my mood is lifted. In my former athletic days, I would put on the headphones to my walkman and listen to music that would energize me. When I am doing chores, th

In Defense

So an absolute tragedy occurred here in the LA area a few days ago. You can go here to read an accounting of the story. Many people in the community are reacting against the LAPD, saying that they never should have shot the man when he was holding a toddler. While I agree that the final outcome was not the best, I get upset at people who judge the men and women in law enforcement. I have two people very closely related to me who are in law enforcement, so perhaps it strikes a nerve because of that. For some reason, the people in law enforcement are expected by most of the population to be practically superhuman. They are simply not allowed to make mistakes, and when they do, there is always a cadre of people who are more than ready to shout out how horrible they are. It is so hard for people to imagine the fluidity of a hostage situation, and how easy it is to make the wrong decision. No one is more aware of the stakes of the situation than they are. I know that I make mistakes

One of the Longest Memes...

that I have ever seen. But, hey, I have no life, so here it is. Anvilcloud sent this over to me in email form, since he had decided not to post it. But I have no secrets from you, my friends, and I am happy to fill in the blanks. 1. What is your full name? Gina, middle name starts with an M and last name starts with a P. Ok, so maybe one secret. I have to say that I dislike my married name, I much preferred my maiden one. 2. What colour pants are you wearing? Gray pajama pants, bought on sale from Target for six bucks! Score! (I also notice that color was spelled the Canadian way) 3. What are you listening to right now? A kick-butt song called "Leah" by a one-hit-wonder named Donnie Iris. 4. What was the last thing you ate? I shared a gourmet dinner with Mr. Personality that consisted of baked Trader Joes' chicken nuggets, corn, and apple slices with caramel. 5. Do you wish on stars? When I am with Mr. Personality or Hubba-hubba I do. I

I Have a Constant Mental Thesaurus Going

Oh, lordy, Suzanne . I do it ALL THE TIME. It is rather pathetic, really. If, as you live your life, you find yourself mentally composing blog entries about it, post this exact same sentence in your weblog.

Who Loves Ya, Baby?

So I dearly love my husband, and I wouldn't trade him for the world. Yet as much you love someone, there are always certain idiosyncracies that drive the people they live with bonkers. Hubba-hubba is a "food fad" type of person. He will occasionally buy something new at the grocery store, and find out that he likes it. Then, it will be as if life had never been as fulfilling since he tasted that product. He will eat it every day if he can, sometimes for weeks, sometimes for months. Then, with no warning, that product is dead to him. He doesn't even want to smell it anymore, much less eat it. This happens of course, just after I have stocked up on it. Knowing the way I fold laundry, (which is to throw it in the dryer if it is wrinkly, as I own practically nothing anymore that requires ironing) why does he always throw a wet load in the dryer right before I have a chance to de-wrinkle it? Perhaps it is his passive-aggressive way of telling me to do a better job

Games People Play

So my family loves playing games. Or more correctly, we like competing against each other for bragging rights. We have played everything, from Pictionary to Ping Pong to bocce. We play tough, we play hard, we have absolutely no mercy. Too bad if you are having an off day or your back hurts. We will seize every advantage we can, and if you are gonna complain, don't play. I'm not sure where our ruthlessness comes from, but I can tell you that I am one heck of a Connect Four player due to the fact my late grandfather would never "let" anyone win, not even a 6 year old. If anyone beat him (which was rarely) it was an honest win. Bocce is one of our favorites. For those of you unfamiliar with it, it is an Italian version of lawn bowling. You have 2 teams of 2. One member of each stands on both ends of the long, rectangular court, although it really can be almost any strip of grass if you aren't playing in an official tournament. Yes, they do have official tou

Seriously, I'm the Innocent One in This Relationship

So in honor of my friend Mel , who is currently having her vacation in Orlando rained upon by Hurricane Dennis, I would like to spin the following tale. Hubba-hubba and I visited Disneyworld probably about 8 years ago. It was the first time we had ever been to Florida, and we weren't that impressed. You see, we are both from Southern California, and in our eyes, Disneyworld is just a humid, bloated Disneyland. Not that there aren't fun things to do at Disneyworld, there are. But having visited Disneyland countless times throughout our lives, we are just used to thinking that the original is the best. On our second-to-last day, we were waiting for one of the shuttles to take us back to our hotel. Neither of us could ever be termed shy people, and we struck up a conversation with another couple also in line. I don't remember where they were from, but they mentioned they were on their honeymoon and asked us if we were also. Alas, our wedding would not be held for anothe

Too Much Testosterone in Here

I alluded to it in an earlier post, but the war between Mr. Personality and Hubba-hubba is getting down and dirty. I am used to taking a shower, only to have the door thrown open halfway through by a blubbering, inchoherent Mr. Personality, who usually has some shaky claim about how his father is treating him badly. I am used to him screaming to come with me to the grocery store, even though Dad is ready and willing to play cars with him, and perhaps sneak him a cookie. I am used to him preferring me to read his books to him, making him food, and helping him to get dressed. I suspected most of that is because I am at home with him all day, and he is just used to the way I do things. But, Mr. Personality crossed the line today when he snifflingly announced to us, "I don't like Dada." Ooooh, that's gotta to hurt. The night before had been a battle royale over who was going to put him to bed. Hubba-hubba works at night, so most nights it is me who has this usually e


Ok, so I totally think that the finale to Dancing With the Stars was fixed. I mean, Kelly Monaco is on a soap that airs on ABC, so it would have been a no-brainer to promote their station with her win. A perfect score for that last dance? I don't think so. Why is it nature's cruel trick to make grey hairs come in the very front and top of your head first? Why can't they begin in the back, underside of your hair? That way you could be blissfully unaware of them for at least a year. I kept Mr. Personality up way past his bedtime for the 4th so that he could watch fireworks. I had him on my lap, and my sister asked how he was holding up. I told her that he was a little on the zombied out side. Then she said, "Well wasn't that the whole point of the 4th when we were kids? To be all tired and whacked out, staying up past our bedtime, snuggling with a parent while watching the fireworks?" And I thought of how true that was. I cannot find Bob the Builder un

101 Things, or is it 102?

1. I am a native Southern Californian. 2. I have long blonde hair and blue eyes. 3. But I am not your typical California-girl type. 4. Because really, most of the California-girl types are not really from here at all. 5. But I digress. 6. I consider myself a centrist, but I lean toward the left. 7. I once thought I would be a lawyer. 8. I also thought I would be a teacher. 9. Boy, was I wrong. 10. I wound up working for a famous think-tank. 11. One of the studies I worked on made it onto the news. 12. It was a very challenging job, and I was very good at it. 13. But I have never really liked to work. 14. My husband will so not be surprised to read that. 15. I noticed that I have used the word "but" a lot already. 16. But I don't care. 17. I have a son who is almost three. 18. He is the greatest. 19. Except when he screams or whines, that gets to me sometimes. 20. I have a very useless degree in English. 21. I went for the "8 year" plan to obtain it. 22. My pare

Lightning Speed

So my little boy is becoming his own person. Sometimes I listen to him talking to himself, and I wonder where the heck he has come up with this stuff. And I don't know if it is because this house is so small and there are two "alpha male" personalities, but he and Hubba-hubba cannot seem to get along. One of his favorite things to do right now is make up words, and especially pleasing is stringing them together and rhyming them. So, in the tub, he will chant, "Mika, bika, wicka, locka, wocka..." Then, if I don't laugh, he will say plaintively, "Can you laugh?" There is no denying that little voice, so I will belt out some hearty guffaws. Or the other day he told me with great seriousness, " Baca means eat." He is also suffering from a case of scatological humor, with the words poo poo and caca (which he knows I loathe him saying the latter) being the front runners. I don't know if I do smell or not, but he is fond of telling