Sunday, April 29, 2012

An Exercise in Sublimation

I went to Target just now to buy a yoga mat. It was on sale for $12. Somehow, I managed to spend over $200. I was feeling reckless and impulsive. When I get like this, it manifests in either of the following two ways: A) Eating too much of something that's bad for me; or B) Spending way too much on stuff I don't really need and can't really afford. Check and check. Not to generalize for over half the world's population, but I think these are pretty typical female coping mechanisms. These past few months at work have been inconceivably stressful (I know, what else is knew, but for reals, it was bad), and there's some stuff in my personal life that's just a tad effed up as well.

Strange, my yoga mat didn't come with a pretty flcwer...

This was a recipe for disaster that almost cost me all the amazing progress I have been making with my healthy lifestyle changes. I gained back six of the seventy-six pounds I had lost, on top of reverting to some of my old compulsive over-eating habits. There's nothing worse than feeling out of control. Especially when you can undo six weeks of hard work and weight loss with three days of poor decisions. I let myself wallow in misery for a whole weekend. Sometimes you just have to. But then last Monday, I got over it. I did laundry, scrubbed my whole apartment (including the shower which I confess had not been cleaned in... let's just say a while), and paid bills. There's something to be said for a cathartic cleaning and organizing purge to reset yourself and gain new perspective.

I'm the life of the self-pity party!

Monday was also the first day I started going to the Burbank Athletic Center. They had a free three-day trial, so I figured I should check out the mythical place known as the "Gym." I'd never really gone to a regular gym before. I was always in sports as a kid, then I went to Curves a few years in high school (apparently they donate to some uber-conservative causes, so boycott them if you can). In college, there was a free state-of-the-art gym that supposedly Kobe Bryant used to work out at, but it was too far to walk to and I didn't have a car. After college, I was too poor to afford a real gym, so I would just go running around the 'hood. But you couldn't do that after dark at the risk of being murder-raped. Then I created this workout, but it wasn't terribly effective. I've been running here in NoHo since about September, but the repetitive motion and hard impact from the concrete really messed with my hip. It was terrifying to me to think that I might not be able to exercise for physical, not psychological reasons for the first time. But perhaps working out on commercial quality machines would fix my joint problems.

Fuck this dude. He makes me vomit.
I wouldn't want to work out at his gym anyway.

It turns out, I frickin' LOVE the gym!!! I can't believe I didn't discover this earlier! Think of how much weight and weight-related aggravation it would have saved if I'd have known that endorphins aren't just a conspiracy designed to get us off our sizable butts in pursuit of naturally occurring uppers. They really do rock, who knew? I always thought gyms were expensive, at least $40-50 bucks a month, but the BAC is actually super cheap at around $10. Even my broke-ass can afford that. I've gone every day for the past week and I look forward to it every time. If you know me at all, you know how crazy that is. They have pretty cheap yoga classes too, which I impulsively signed up for just now to try it. I'm going at 9am tomorrow, so we'll see if I'm just as jazzed on yoga as I am about cardio and strength-training. (I'm assuming Wii Yoga really isn't the same.)

Clearly I can't be trusted with a credit card when I'm emotional.

This initial impulse-buy led to the afore-mentioned yoga mat purchase. Which was accompanied by yoga pants, yoga capris, new sports bras, brightly-colored sweat towels, multi-vitamins, and a bunch of other stuff to get me excited about this new phase in my life. I think this is behavior I learned from my mother. If you're going to make a big change, it helps to buy new stuff to get you mentally prepared. Even though I probably could have made due with the million sports bras and workout clothes I already have, I needed to do this. I will probably regret it when I get my Target card bill, but for now, I'm just stoked to see what all the fuss is about. And it feels good to finally have some control again. Well, I'm still eating too many things I shouldn't, but at least I'm overcompensating for my short-comings with excessive exercising. And it's a lot healthier to take out all my rage and frustrations on the Stairmaster than getting drunk or high or eating a whole tub of cookie dough.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Penis Pasta Feast

If Saturday proved anything, it's that I will go to the ends of the earth to make sure that my friends have the necessary accoutrements for what is essentially a penis-themed party. And by the 'ends of the earth,' I mean all the way to West Hollywood. Not to dis WeHo, which is like Gay Disneyland, but it's just in the middle of the city, miles away from any convenient freeway and always takes forever to get to no matter what time of day it is.

How much do I love dirty puns? THIS MUCH!!!!

Since I had waited to the last minute, as I am wont to do, I was scrambling to locate the primary ingredient for my potluck assignment: penis pasta. Having had no luck in the Valley, I was forced to search over the hill at the one place I knew would carry it: The Pleasure Chest on Santa Monica Blvd. I had been there once before and was very impressed by its selection and friendly, helpful staff. I called ahead, just to make sure the pasta was in stock. They said they had two left, and that if I could be there that night, they would hold them for me.
According to the clerk, this is the classiest kind of penis pasta.
I scurried to get ready and on the road to make the trek down to WeHo. Traffic was actually in my favor and I made it there in record time. But then I waited the same amount of time in the store just to get my damn pasta. This chick was taking forever to buy, well I probably shouldn't tell you what she was buying, but if you've suffered through a particularly disturbing scene from "Requiem for a Dream," then you can imagine how uncomfortable I was whilst waiting my turn. I'm pretty nonjudgmental when it comes to that sort of thing, but I had to stop myself from physically cringing. Stupid Darren Aronofsky.

That bastard. Shudder.

The clerk ended up not being able to find those last two boxes of Mama Peckeroni. Luckily, they did have Macaweenie and Cheese. "The only pasta with a hard-on." It was glorious. Even the directions were dirty. "Do not rinse pasta, as Macaweenie will become flaccid." Tee hee. I also bought a similarly shaped sucker for the bride-to-be and dirty Mad Libs. Because Mad Libs are the Business. As are pot lucks with delicious pot roast, cocktail weenies in a penis-shaped blanket, and my now World Famous Macaweenie and Cheese. And karaoke bars. And hanging with your girls, celebrating an impending marriage, and yelling "WOOOOOO!" a lot.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Penis Pasta Famine

There is a famine in the Valley, one that we never saw coming. In this fertile land of porn stars both legitimate and aspiring, and adult bookstores that litter the land like Starbucks and CVS, you cannot find a single box of pasta shaped like a man's junk. What the hell is this world coming to? (I really really really wanted to hide a dirty pun in that last sentence, but I refrained because I'm classy like that. But I think you can probably figure it out anyway...) I've never actually purchased penis pasta before, or seen it for sale in my limited sex shop experience. But I always thought that it was a major adult novelty item. Not so, as it turns out.

Tee hee. Penis.

I'm kicking myself for waiting until the night before my dear friend and fellow Tomato, Tiffany's bachelorette pot luck and karaoke shindig to purchase what I was so excited to bring: phallic-shaped carbs, hopefully whole wheat if possible so I could actually eat it. I had planned to order it online three weeks ago, but it just kept getting pushed back and neglected until it was too late and overnight shipping was too expensive. Time just flies by when you're avoiding something. I can't believe I even procrastinated this arguably enjoyable task.

What kind of self-respecting adult-oriented establishment doesn't carry penis pasta???

But anyway, here we are, less than 24 hours to go, and no stores within a five mile radius carry penis pasta. (I know five miles isn't very big, but it's late and I have to work tomorrow). One of the stores I called, I could barely understand the guy who answered the phone. I made him repeat the name of the store like five times just to make sure I hadn't misdialed and very awkwardly asked an Old Folks Home if they sold genitalia-themed pasta. But even after I was convinced that it was indeed a sex shop located in Studio City, the answer was no. Not cool, Valley. Not cool.

I also find this vaguely dirty.

I guess I'll just have to settle for Penne Pasta with White Sauce and make the argument that 'penne' is as close to 'penis' as pasta gets. In fact I wonder if 'penne' actually means 'penis' in Italian. Excuse me whilst I Google (insert Jeopardy theme song here)... Damn. It's actually derived from the Latin for 'feather' or 'quill.' That's not really dirty or funny. Sad. Oh well. Happy early bachelorette party, Tiffany!!!!! (Though I doubt she's actually reading this...)

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Teen Idols

It's been way too long since I've made a list, and this is one I've been kicking around for a while. I think I basically failed as a teenager. Sure, I got good grades, did sports, sang in choirs, acted in plays, went to church (for the first part of puberty anyway), got into a good college, and respected my parents.

But I never put the smack down on anyone in wicked costumes, never challenged any evil government entities, never rode off into the unknown to seek vengeance for a traumatic childhood event. Basically, I was boring. This fact has been highlighted by the following teenage fictional characters who are so frickin' badass that I have self-esteem issues just pondering their awesomeness:

1. Mattie Ross from "True Grit"

I never watch Westerns because I inexplicably loathe that part of history. The only reason I bothered to click on True Grit on Netflix was this girl's face. Hard. Core. She looks like she would eat you and your mother for breakfast if you crossed her and pick her teeth with your pinkie bone. That's not to accuse 14-year old Mattie of being a cannibal. But the girl does what needs to be done with neither muss nor fuss. I don't think we would have been friends back in the day. I'm probably too frivolous for her. But I would have admired her moxie.

Homegirl has a snarl that could rival Billy Idol.

2. Janis Ian from "Mean Girls"

Janis Ian is exactly who I wasn't in high school. Brutally honest, creative, hilarious, and always had the perfect cutting remark for anyone she didn't have patience for (see below). She's intensely loyal to her friends, and manages to look super cool even in a purple ruffled tuxedo. Plus, she does a mean Xena warrior cry. And anyone who even attempts a Xena warrior cry is Aces in my proverbial book.


3. Katniss Everdeen from "The Hunger Games"

Honestly, I'm a bigger fan of Katniss from the book than the movie just because we got to see into her head. Her thought process for a lot of the things she had to do were so complicated and slightly warped out of necessity for survival. She's dark and cynical, but noble and resourceful too. This one is kind of obvious, so I'll stop the gushing here.

I want to be on Katniss's team during the zombie apocalypse.

4. Olive Penderghast from "Easy A"

Olive's ass-kicking is more metaphorical than some of these other young ladies. She does wear a costume, but it's snarky rather than functional. I heart Olive because she has excellent taste in movies (she's almost as big of a John Hughes fan as I am) and an amazing vocabulary. I also love that she's a capitalist who profits off of the socially unfortunate. However, she has a compassionate heart and genuinely wants to help people without being taken advantage of. And the best part of all is that she pulled off a huge saucy musical number in the middle of a pep rally complete with participation from the school marching band and a guy in a woodchuck costume. And she rides off into the sunset on a riding lawn mower. Good for you, Olive Penderghast. Good for you.

"Are you really that repulsed by lady parts? What do you think I have down there? A gnome?"

5. Hit Girl from "Kickass"

I don't know if she's actually a teenager yet, but Hit Girl is seriously the most badass of all these women. I want to be her when I grow up, even though she's at least ten years younger than me. She is ruthless and deadly by any standards and she looks damn adorable when she's beating the shit out of people. And call me sentimental, but I just love it when children swear like sailors. Hit Girl stole the movie and stole our hearts and it would be an honor to fight by her side.

Look at that face. You don't mess with that face.

I'm sure there are more amazing fake women who have not yet reached adulthood, but I'm drawing the line at five. Feel free to suggest more in the comments. Just remember, that even though you may love a character, consider as to whether or not you actually want to BE them. You will be shot if you mention Bella Swan. Unless you make the argument that she totally sucks and yet has reasonably attractive menfolk swarming all over her beeswax who are willing to die to protect her scrawny, boring, lame ass.

PS. There are many characters I left off the list intentionally because while I love them, I really don't want to be them. Anyone played by Molly Ringwald is a prime example.

PPS. Added much later. Honorable Mentions: Bliss Cavender from Whip It, and Maeby Funke from Arrested Development. 

Friday, April 13, 2012


I have discovered in the last few years that the entire right side of my body is smaller than my left. Seriously, my feet, my breasts, even my knees are lopsided. I always thought this was unfortunate but amusing. I'm a quirky soul, so naturally my outward appearance is just as twisted as I am. Ok, so it's not really noticeable to anyone but myself. Unless you spend an inordinate amount of time looking at my chest and/or feet, in which case, ew stop now.

Not really relevant, but TEE HEE HEE!

This slight deformity, perhaps caused by birth, or sleeping too much on one side, has never been an issue before. The only real side effect seemed to be that I can't walk in a straight line to save my life. Anyone who has ever walked next to me has to push me to the side so I don't run them over on accident. I used to joke that if I was ever pulled over for a DUI, I would probably fail just because I naturally veer to the right like a car out of alignment. "I swear, Officer, I'm not drunk! I'm just crooked!" Luckily, this theory has never been proven.

Hypothetical me, failing miserably.

But now that I'm finally getting healthy and working out on a regular basis, I'm discovering that my minor bodily quirk has a major consequence. I have been having random hip pain for the last few weeks, like I'm an eighty-four year old arthritic woman named Doris and not a twenty-four year old active fox named Hutch. I keep imagining myself in those commercials, limp on the floor at the foot of the stairs pleading pathetically, "Help, I've fallen and I can't get up!"

Also me.

After spending some time with Dr. Google, I have determined that this pain is caused by LLD, Leg Length Discrepancy (you all know my pet peeve of making acronyms and then saying what they are right afterwards, but 'LLD' sounds a lot more serious and dramatic than 'Leg Length Discrepency'). Because my legs are different sizes, this means that my longer left leg has to compensate for my lame shorter right leg. Basically, I've been running like a pirate on a peg leg this whole time, causing stress on my left hip.

I can't believe I actually found a picture of a running peg-legged pirate.
Score one for Google!

The ironic thing is that this pain only started surfacing after I bought good running shoes. Everyone (and by everyone I mean my friend, my mom, my Gentleman Caller, and my Gentleman Caller's Mom) kept scolding me for wearing my crappy Target-brand cross-trainers, saying that I was going to screw up my feet. I bit the bullet and forked over more money than I had to spend on some gel-filled Asics. And now I have a broken hip. Stupid Asics. I've been running since about September and never had any problems other than frequent, recurring blisters and the odd ankle spasm. That just goes to show you what a conspiracy good marketing can be.

Coincidence? I think not.

It sucks even more because I'm finally in a good rhythm with my exercise. I love that I can just throw on my over-priced shoes and walk out the door to my favorite paved pedestrian path through a charming Burbank residential area. No gym fees, no attractive but angry/disappointed personal trainer, no snotty girls who are in much better shape than me in scheduled classes that I have to plan my life around. I can go at my own pace and listen to my own music and it doesn't require hand/eye coordination. Running is great. Well, it actually still sucks, but it's a lot better than most other forms of exercise. My body just wasn't designed for running. It was meant for sturdily traversing the country all Manifest Destiny-like and popping out Mormon baby after Mormon baby.

Hopefully you all have seen this commercial. Because this woman is my soulmate.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do about this dreaded LLD. I took almost a week off from running (more out of laziness than purposefully resting my hip), but I ran again yesterday an I'm still in pain. I really don't want to go to the doctor, even though I finally have health insurance. That's a bigger pain than the one in my hip.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Quarter-Life Crisis Thought of the Day

My crappy apartment shares an alley with a paper supply company. Glamorous, I know. The Imperial Paper Company happens to be the distributer for a large number of major studios, like Disney, Sony, and Paramount. Every day (at obscenely early hours), these huge trucks lumber through the alley and park right outside my house. At first I thought it was cool. I even imagined stowing away in the back and hitching a ride to Hollywood Proper. (Despite it's deceptive moniker, North Hollywood is located a good fifteen minutes down the 101 from Real Hollywood. Thirty in traffic).
One bedroom, Imperial Paper Company-Adjacent.
Don't you wish you lived in this prime location?

I also briefly considered seducing a teamster just to get an 'in.' (Emphasis on "briefly." That was a desperate moment.) The novelty soon wore off though. I realized today that this proximity to gruff drivers in plaid loading up boxes of paper products destined to fill the printers of the more creative and better-paid studio employees, is probably the closest I'll ever get to show business. I wish that paper would eventually display words I wrote on it, but it seems doubtful at this point.


Sunday, April 8, 2012

Obligatory Holiday-Themed Post

Since commenting on the arrival of any given holiday always seems to be a proven goldmine for blog topics, I thought I would continue my grand tradition of lameness and discuss this most glorious of days, Easter. And by glorious, I mean, 'meh.' Seriously, if you're not a kid, you don't have kids, and you're not religious by any means, Easter kind of sucks. Especially if you don't even have any family nearby to at least use it as an excuse to gather boisterously, eat too much Orange Goop, play an overly competitive round of Apples to Apples, and drink boxed White Zinfandel (is that just my family?).

Happy Easter Island!

Because I disdain of most religions, I'm not obligated to give up my Sunday off and sit around in a drafty church getting high off of incense or torn up bits of Wonderbread (that last part makes since if you are now or ever were Mormon). So that tradition is out. Because I'm four and twenty, not just four, I can't rationalize a good Easter egg hunt (because that would look kind of creepy for a childless grown-up to hang out around an event meant for children. Plus, the best hunts were always at my Grandma's in Sacramento). And because my mommy is five-hundred miles away, I can't even re-enact the best of my childhood memories: searching for my skillfully concealed Easter basket. My mom was seriously a Wiz at hiding our baskets. Our house was not huge, and yet it always seemed to take me at least an hour and a half to find it. But when I did, there would be waiting a giant chocolate ostrich-sized egg filled with fudge or peanut butter. *DROOLS*

Sorry, Chuck. Never a good idea.

Mom came to visit me last year right before Easter. She left the morning of, but left me a note that I had to find my "basket." And by "basket" she meant the white, plastic kitchen colander she re-purposed and filled with Ikea chocolate she bought when I wasn't looking the day before. Pretty sneaky, Mom! So that was awesome. But then the rest of the day I spent doing laundry and drinking a bottle of Two Buck Chuck Chardonnay. Then the rest of the night I spent puking up the Two Buck Chuck Chardonnay. (The lesson learned was that if you're going to go with Chuck, stick with red. And eat something besides Ikea chocolate first, for God's sake!) Maybe the Easter bunny will bring me some Cabernet Sauvignon, since I'm on a diet and can't technically eat most treats associated with the occasion.

Totally irrelevant, but this made me giggle.

But this year, I'm all by my lonesome. Just sitting at my computer, reminiscing about holidays and massive chocolate eggs gone by. Woe is me! But at least I had eggs for breakfast. That's somewhat festive, right?

Why thank you Rob Pattinson!
Happy Easter to you too!
(I don't think he actually knew he was posing for an Easter-themed greeting, do you?)
(Sidebar, I'm not really a fan. I just thought this was really random.)

Sunday, April 1, 2012


Being that I am still incredibly poor, despite being gainfully employed to the Man, I have been living in (over-priced) hovels ever since I left the warm, cozy bubble of UC Irvine. The primary criterion in determining whether an apartment qualifies as a hovel seems to come down to one major attribute: the fridge. When I was forced by a city-wide monopoly to rent from The Irvine Company, every single apartment I lived in had a dishwasher, microwave, fridge, and in most cases a washer and dryer. I took for granted that this was normal. I had yet to learn that these basic appliances equal "luxury" in Southern California. Which is probably why the only way I could afford those apartments was with a minimum of three roommates.

I swear, it was THIS big!

So when I moved to my first solo apartment in LA, I was a bit shocked to discover that I was only provided with a stove. Since I had no money for a fridge, I had to borrow a tiny mini-fridge my mom used to keep in her classroom that was barely big enough for three cans of soda. The freezer section was roughly the size of a shoebox and was perpetually iced over. I'm sure that I've complained about this fridge before on Sporadic Sporkitudes, that surely put the 'mini' in 'miniscule.' When I set out to move from South Central to the slightly less-ghetto North Hollywood, the only thing I really wanted was a fridge. I had acquired a microwave, gotten used to the laundromat, and I rarely did dishes, even when I had a dishwasher. But you just can't live without a fridge. And it's not exactly something you can tote around in an '89 Mercury Topaz.

With this determination to get my fridge, I made a deal with my then-future landlady. The apartment did not originally come with one, so to close the sale, I made her buy me a fridge. Because I'm sneaky and awesome like that. But it turns out, she was sneaky as well and found a loophole. I did not specify that the fridge had to be in working order. So for the first few months, the fridge froze everything from milk to grapes solid, no matter what temperature I set it at. Then it was just lukewarm despite having a repairman look at it twice. Sure, it would be reasonably cool for a few weeks on and off. But it was all just to lure me into a false sense of security. That sonofabitch.

Not only unappetizing, but a waste of money. Sigh.

Finally, I just gave up on perishable foods altogether. This was extremely difficult, since I'm on a diet that requires lots of fresh produce, protein, and low-fat dairy. I used to live off of dairy products and I could never trust them in my fridge again. I'd buy milk and it would go bad within a day or two. Cheese instantly developed a fuzzy green overcoat. And forget about leftovers from eating out. Because of this fridge, I have developed a latent intolerance for lactose. Not cool, Devil Fridge. Not cool. (Literally, hahahaha!). Now I've been subsisting on frozen food and dry goods. Meaning oatmeal, bananas, peanut butter, and 100 calorie whole grain hockey puck bread. It gets old.

But at long last, I was able to score a fridge of my own, one that actually works! I will spare you all the details on how I acquired it (let's just say there was a cage match, some Indonesian headdresses, and a handful of magic beans in the mix). But after a great effort (mostly by my chivalrous Gentleman Caller), I got the new fridge up the stairs to my second floor apartment, and the Devil-Fridge out to the alley. It was picked up within minutes from a junk pirate who happened to be scouring for roadkill. (I also gave her my old stereo that I never use because I haven't bought a CD since high school when I was going through a wicked Broadway phase, and hadn't even turned the damn thing on in 4 or 5 years.)

My actual thumb, and my actual fridge. Isn't it purdy?
No go away, we wish to be alone...

To celebrate my good fortune, I went grocery shopping for the first time in months last night. You cannot imagine the freedom of being able to shop for the foods that you want (and that are allowed by a semi-restrictive diet), and not have to worry about whether it will fit, get frostbite, melt, and/or grow radioactive mold within minutes of placement in a mini mini-fridge, or Satan's Refrigerator. I was practically giddy with delight as I skipped around Ralph's, tossing all the dairy products I had missed so into the cart. Seriously, I got some weird stares. But I didn't care, and intestinal discomfort be damned! Hopefully this will be the last you ever have to hear about my fridge because I'll go back to taking it for granted. But for now, let me just say, if it's wrong to be sexually attracted to a kitchen appliance, then I don't want to be right!