Archive | April, 2012

Celebs: The New Suburban Validation.

23 Apr

Serena Van der Woodsen... the "country" Gossip Girl

So Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively are going to be my new neighbors up here in Northern Westchester. At least that’s what I read in People or US Weekly or CelebrityWTFWhoCaresNews last week.

Which begs the question… Why do I care? Why is that some valid piece of information I feel proud to share with anyone who’s not from here? When I was a city girl, celebs were a bore. They were everywhere! I couldn’t go out to dinner, or grab my morning coffee, or make my annual mecca to the gym without running into someone (yawn) famous. One got out of the cab, I got into the cab. One crossed the street one way, I crossed the other. One stood behind me in line for the loo at Stanton Social, texting furiously to their equa-famous friends, I stood texting myself to remember to pick up T.P. and deodorant. Nothing to see here, people.

But now… now! Oh, how celebrities have taken on a different meaning. Let’s take one of my favorite little spots here in town: Little Kabab Station. I love me some Little Kabob. It’s just… such. A good. Spot. It doesn’t need any fluff. But Martha Stewart wrote about it on her blog, and somehow, that’s the first thing I tell people who haven’t tried it yet. As if it needs Martha to validate it. It doesn’t! I swear!

What happened to my cool-as-a-cucumber jadedness over celeb-hype? I’ll tell you what: the “Suburbs” happened. And now I’m forced to use any and all methods I can find to validate living here. Because it’s the suburbs. Not the city. And apparently that makes me no longer cool enough to just “be cool” with the occasional celeb-spottings. Now, I actually use them as lure. As bait! I’m ashamed… so, so ashamed.

In the end, does it validate living here? Do the celebs who occasionally trek up here to their “country” manses somehow make the “country” cooler? No. Hell to the no. I don’t really care about Catherine Zeta. Or Blake Lively. Or Chevy Chase. I care about my friends. And my neighbors. And my little, humble, grassroots attempt at trying to authentically make this a better place to live — so we no longer need to use celeb-sightings as validation of how great it is here.

Big ups, suburbs.

Random Thoughts. This One Goes to 11.

19 Apr

1. I’m tired of being asked by blogs and websites and Mother-Theresa types, “Do you ever let your toddler watch TV?” Like it’s a bad thing. Honestly. Didn’t we all grow up on Sesame Street and Scooby Doo? Cut a working mom some slack. TV is my friend, and Jack’s too. (In moderation of course, yada yada yada…yawn.)

2. The Hunger Games. I just started the book and I can’t put it down. Ridiculousness. And what kind of name is Peeta? I want to shmear him with hummus.

3. Speaking of books. is anyone other than me tired of hearing about 50 Shades already? Yes, it’s racy, and yes it’s sexy. But it’s also so poorly written I found myself red-penning the entire thing in my head. (Did no one edit this book before it was published??) So please stop, people. Go have sex with your spouse or significant. Get tied up. Then move on, let’s talk about something else. Like vampire babies.

4. Tupac’s back. Thank god for that, because I was afraid I’d never see him again.

5. Did you know you can bake with bacon? I didn’t either. Until now.

6. I wish it could just be Sunday already. You know why? Because the bitches are back.

7. My hubby has been doing this weird Paleo diet where he eats like a caveman. He’s lost weight. I’ve been doing the diet, sort of, in a non-committal way, by default. I haven’t lost any weight. How is this fair? Don’t answer this question.

8. I think there’s a spray tan in my future. I’m a firm believer in SPF protection, but not at the expense of looking like Casper’s sister. Which I kind of do.

9. It’s my birthday next month, and I really want this, because I used to have one when I was like 17 and I’d like to pretend I’m young again. Can someone tell my hubby please?

10. Seriously, my culinary weakness in Mt Kisco is without a doubt the bipimbap at NEO Bistro. I guess it’s quite possible this answers question #7.

11. Does anyone else find Jacuzzi tubs creepy?

Talk amongst yourselves…

Words of Wisdom Wednesday

18 Apr

Know someone who needs a nudge? Gift them one of these Helen Keller inspired tees, available here.

Date Night: the Suburban Edition

11 Apr

Hey all you 20-somethings: let me give you a sound piece of advice. Relish in your freedom. Be grateful for every single party, dinner out, pub run to meet a friend for a quick drink. Because there will come a time when this little thing called “responsibility” will put a damper on that spontaneous self-love fest.

When you’re single and ready to mingle, you don’t really appreciate the flexibility of your own schedule. It’s just about creating a busy social life, and the rare night-in actually feels like a detox. Ahhh, the good ‘ole days.

These days, if I want to spend an evening out, it takes just a little bit of planning. As in, first checking my own calendar, then calling my husband and asking him to check his calendar. Then sending out an S.O.S. signal to the local babysitter and negotiating back and forth with her for an available date and time (“Sorry, I am doing keg stands on Saturday with my BFFs… but I’m free the third Tuesday in May.”), which requires of course going back and repeating steps 1 and 2 again until we’re all in agreement. Then of course, since it took so much planning, I feel obligated to actually make sure the night out is worth it, so I have to plan all the details of what we’ll do. This requires going on OpenTable and finding an available reservation somewhere, then going on Yelp and reading all the reviews on the place to make sure it’s up to par, then going back indecisively 14 times and changing the restaurant (“D’oh! We haven’t been to Tarry Lodge yet… but they only have a 9:45pm slot… what is this, the Meatpacking District?? Who eats at 9:45? I’m usually in bed hugging my body pillow by then… but I really want to go, that pizza with the egg on it is crying out to me… oh man, most recent review says it was overrated. Shit. Start over…”)

Once this ritual has been completed, it’s hurry up and wait time. As in, this date night is so long overdue that seriously I can already taste the vodka martini. I’ll think about it constantly, think about what we can do after dinner since we do have the sitter after all… maybe add an activity onto the night. (An activity! How novel!) Like “hey – let’s go bowling! No, bowling sucks. Let’s go to a movie! No, I’ll fall asleep, who am I kidding….” As I stress over creating the perfect evening out, the hubby is completely oblivious. His thought process: “You booked a babysitter? Great. Let’s go get drunk!”

Then of course, after all the buildup, the day finally arrives and… yippee!! Date night is here. I even put on heels because that’s how you roll on date night. So we finally rush to get Baby Bear sorted and fed, and bathed and give the babysitter all the instructions and phone numbers and directions to the nearest bomb shelter. We rush out the door to get to the restaurant for our reservation, and sit down, and put our phones out on the table “just in case” the sitter texts (There’s nothing sexier than a romantic night out with the impending possibility of an emergency text from your babysitter.)

And so one cocktail in and I’m already buzzed because I hardly drink anymore. And hubby really just wants to check the score of the game, because date night was originally supposed to be Saturday and now it’s Tuesday and the Yankees are playing. And after the check comes, we’re both so tired because it’s mid-week and we each have like 14 jobs (because we’re crazy and ambitious and take on too much) so we decide to bag the activity portion of the evening and just head home. And we arrive home and pass the babysitter $350 (because seriously, these sitters cost a fortune these days… they’re like serial entrepreneurs at age 12, they totally are killing it already). So now we’re broke and tired. And one of us has to drive the sitter down the block to her house b/c really, in this day and age you never know, and you can’t trust anyone, and the suburbs are dangerous, and who needs that worry…

Finally, heels off and makeup washed away and I crawl into bed and turn on the TV and check my DVR and think… wasn’t it fun? 

I said no, no, NO.

2 Apr

I know, I know. There are points when this blog feels more like ToddlerLife than WestchesterLife. While for me, the two go hand in hand, I realize for some of you it may not. And for that I offer my apologies. And condolences that you live in this county without at least the excuse of children (i.e. good schools) for why you’re here.

So my latest kvetch really has to do with what I’d like to call the Pre-2 No’s. Jack is just shy of 20 months. And while we have exited one fussy period, we’ve entered another. And it’s days like today I really wonder how the kids of teen moms actually manage to stay alive. There’s NO WAY a 16-year old has patience for this crap.

Now, I used to daydream about myself as a parent. In previous posts, I shared with you my delusional fantasy of parenthood which included dining with my little at a chic corner bisto, me with cappuccino and he with cup o’cheerio. Alas, those fantasies will remain just that (along with the one where an unmarked package arrives at my door consisting of 4 pairs of custom Louboutin Biancas and an Hermes Kelly bag in trademark orange.) A girl can dream…

I also used to daydream about being the kind of nouveau parent that didn’t use the word “no.” Sure, I’d read about these people in my younger years; the ones who believed that the word “no” was stagnant, and halted creative development. Surely Basquiat’s parents never said no to him, and if they had, his infamous ‘SAMO’ graffiti tag might never have been.

Let’s just say that the word “no” has officially been my most-used word of 2011. Aaaannnnd 2012. Every other word out of my mouth is “no.” As he reaches for the razor on the bathroom counter: “Jack, NO!” As he starts to drag his big, wooden activity cube-center-thingy across the brand new espresso bamboo floors: “No!”  As he picks up an umpteenth role of toilet paper and starts to unravel it, with a mad-man grin on his face. “Please, no.” And a resounding, if not defeatist “NO!” as I see his arm lift up, and start to swipe all the food I just painstakingly cooked, cooled down, and cut up,  off his high chair tray and onto the floor and the waiting mouth of Leia the Wunderdog.

So tonight, as I sip from my second tequila on the rocks, I say a big “F-YOU” to those parents who coolly mention they don’t ever use the word “no.” I’d like to think your house is in shambles and you’re a bunch of big alcoholics, and you just put up with all of that nonsense because you think it makes you hipster parents. “No” is a valuable word in my book, and one that will be instilled in this kids brain if it kills me.

Now can someone pour me another drink?