The Uncomplicated Man

James Dean

There’s nothing more satisfying than a revelation. You know…an aha! moment. When those light bulbs turn on in our heads like one did for me recently, a girl’s gotta share.

Men. I won’t argue with anyone that men aren’t difficult. They certainly can be, they definitely are sometimes. I’ve known a few like this in my life for sure, but one thing they are not is complicated. Read more

I’m Sorry, Mr. Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway 1899-1961

A couple of years ago, I set a goal for myself to start reading the American classics. It made me feel smarter to think I might one day know how to namedrop all of our most famous literary icons with real authority. I wanted to know all about the ones about whom my friends say, “Oh my God! He’s my favorite author!”

I especially wanted to fall in love with Ernest Hemingway. I’d saved myself for him, for after I finished writing my own book and was no longer in the middle of any other novels. I wanted to give him my undivided attention because everything I’d read about him pointed towards adoration. I anticipated a long, sexy summer reading about falling in love during the Spanish American War, bullfights in Spain and cafes in Paris, and salty men repairing fishing nets…all being ideas that made me swoon in romantic anticipation. I bought six of his most famous works and downloaded them all at once. Satisfaction was 100% guaranteed. A perfect collection of beach books, right? I nestled in. Read more

Ideal

PC: Instagram @monikaklicks

#relationshipgoals  When you see a sultry black and white picture of a gorgeous young couple tied up together like snakes under blankets on the couch watching Netflix.

#bestfriendgoals  And you wonder who you would invite to go hiking through Europe with you, if  you and a best friend could actually take a trip like that.

#lifegoals But then you come back down to earth because you know you probably won’t ever really own a home off the coast of Greece, overflowing with a garage full of race cars.

#fitnessgoals Because let’s face it, this is real life and we are all just regular, normal, average people who don’t spend hours and hours of each day staying in shape, looking perfect and making millions of dollars.

What is ideal? and What is unrealistic?  These are questions everyone asks themselves quietly, like I do, as I try to set goals for myself while at the same time being honest about who I am as a person and where I am in my life. They’re questions that trick me sometimes because (1) I’m an eternal optimist and (2) I don’t like to think of my behaviors, my habits, my future and my body as things that I can no longer control. Read more

Sex and Economics

PC: Instagram @thepetitereader

In 1991, I was forced to enroll in your typical, freshmen-level Economics-101 class. It was utterly coma-inducing to be honest, like you probably think this blog post is going to be after seeing the word Economics in the title, but stay with me for a minute.

Knowing that only a small fraction of the 80 or so students in the class would ever need an in-depth knowledge of supply and demand curves, the professor offered us an alternative assignment: Read “Atlas Shrugged” by Ayn Rand and complete a 2000-word essay on what we learned. Anything we learned. However we interpreted it, let it be known that we gleaned something inspiring from the mammoth 1000-page novel. So thinking it was the easier option, I read it as a teenager and predictably wrote my paper on the value of capitalism.

I’ve since traversed through my 44 years never needing to know too terribly much about surpluses and shortages, just as my professor predicted. This past year, I found myself teaching Economics to my 12th graders and believe me, it’s a class that’s still coma-inducing. So I made them the same offer: read Atlas Shrugged and tell me what you get out of it. I also decided to give the book another run-through myself just so I could be prepared to answer their questions.

It was like I was reading an entirely different novel! All the capitalism/socialism stuff remained familiar but there were new ideas in there about sex and the relationships between men and women that I couldn’t have or wouldn’t have appreciated when I was 19 years old. Ayn Rand, a woman whose fame comes entirely from her Objectivism philosophy and her knowledge of the path of the American economy, also incorporated an incredible understanding of the sexual tendencies in men and women.  Read more

When Your Plaid Clashes With My Polka Dots

Photo Credit: Instagram @jamesdowd1.

Opposite patterns that just do not go together. That’s how I describe the relationship I have with this person I know on Facebook. I am allergic to him. Don’t laugh. You’re allergic to people, too. You just didn’t know it until reading this.

Have you ever known someone or known of them from a distance, and on the surface your potential for friendship seemed so promising? Your child’s algebra teacher, who seemed like such a cool chick when you first met at orientation. Your favorite student’s mom, who was so hysterical and real the first time you spoke over the phone. The other parents you were introduced to at the ballpark last week, realizing with amazement how many common friendships you shared with each other. All of the factors for a promising camaraderie were in place. The problem is, you realized there was a rub there and you couldn’t quite explain it or name what it was about her stripes or his plaid that didn’t match one of the polka dot patterns in your personality. Read more

To Thine Own Self Be True

PC: K. Floyd Instagram @misskatiefloyd, Photo by Joel Alvarez

I’ve been heard many times publicly chastising young girls for their choices in Homecoming dresses. They’re too short. Too much boob. Too tight. I have also been heard, just this week, giving a rousing shout-out to girls who choose modeling and bartending as a rather fruitful way to pay their bills. Wow! The hypocrisy, you say? No. These are very different situations. Read more