Monday, March 23, 2009

I went on vh1 and got the love of my perfect man! (and an STD)

"Reality TV" is an oxymoron. I don't care how much everyone wants to say it's not, it is. In the same way that you are always watching what you say around your boss, if there is a camera in your face, there are certain things you wouldn't normally do or say. Therefore, it's not real. Ever.

That said, I do sometimes enjoy these shows. They are funny and are usually like watching a car crash: no matter how hard you try, you just can't look away! I really enjoy the ones where they are competing for a prize, like on ANTM or Project Runway, or just The Real World where drama always happens. I'm even kind of enjoying Tough Love (a new vh1 series) because, unlike other vh1 series, this one is not about 15 girls all vying for the prize of one man. It's about these girls finding in themselves that they are worth love, and even though it is cheesy and stupid, there is some good to it.

Now, the shows that I absolutely cannot stand anymore are all the ones where a bunch of guys/girls fight for the "love" of one person. The Bachelor/Bachelorette, Flavor of Love, Rock of Love, For the Love of Ray J, Joe Millionaire, Shot at Love, etc. I won't lie; I have watched and sometimes enjoyed these shows. But the more I think about it, the more I am truly disgusted by it.

Here's the concept: (I'm using a male example because, let's be honest, these are more common. Women are more willing to do stupid shit for "love") A guy is tired of playing the field and wants to find "true love." Somewhere between 10 and 20 women are then moved into a house and proceed to compete for this ONE guy's love. They go on various "dates" and constantly try to break down the credibility of the other girls in order to win this ONE guy's "heart." In the end, one girl gets the “love” of her Prince Charming.

Here's the problem: You go on this show to fall in love with the same man. Then that man goes on various "dates" with these other women and, once again let's be real, probably has sex with them. So, if there are 20 women on the show and he has "sexual relations" with even half of these women, that's 10 women in the course of six weeks that he has had sex with. And I'm not including you. Then, at the end, it's just you and one other girl and he chooses you! Happiness ensues. You're thinking, "Finally! I get to spend some real time together! We are in love and everything is going to be great and wonderful and we are going to be together forever!" The end.

Or not.

Sure, you're going to be able to spend a lot of time together. At the free clinic. Because you know his ass did not use protection with all these girls and now you both got somethin' that you don't want to go to your regular doctor about. That's real.

Sure, you're in love. With the person he played for the cameras. What happens when the cameras aren't around? Who the hell is this guy? Is he different when cameras aren't around? Yes, he is different. He's no longer getting paid to do slutty things with you, therefore he's going to go back to doing slutty things with the other girls that weren't hot enough to make it on the show. Or, he's going to go back to the girlfriend he was going on reality TV to support because he's washed up and can't make any money otherwise. Yeah, it's true.

Now, I know that this is all for entertainment value, but come on! There is entertainment, and then there is stupidity. I can’t even watch them for entertainment value anymore because I just feel pity for the people on there. Half of them will go back to being nobodies and will be worse off than they were before the show started. It ‘s sad.

That said, all of you are going to continue watching because you’re entertained by it. That’s fine, but the next time you watch, just remember the old saying: When you have sex with someone, you’re sleeping with every single person they’ve ever slept with. And if you’re on Rock of Love, you’re also sleeping next to her on the bus.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Ok, sometimes work doesn't totally suck...

I know that I talk a lot of shit about my job. There are, of course, a lot of things I hate about it. But, every once in awhile, I talk to someone that makes me remember that my job isn't as bad as I like to say it is.

First of all, I have to mention Mike. Mike is a writer who, before he abandoned us for the fabulous life in San Francisco, would come in everyday for his triple Venti Skinny Vanilla Latte. He's an uber-cool guy that I would always complain to when I'd had a particularly annoying customer or if someone had something stupid. We actually exchanged info when he moved so we could keep in touch. I'm glad we did because now I can enjoy his musings on his fave San Francisco coffee shop!

One of our "weekend regulars" is this guy who sits on the patio and plays his guitar. He only gets a cup of coffee, but he always pays for it and doesn't try to scam us out of cups or milk or anything. He just parks himself on the patio for a few hours and plays his guitar. He doesn't do it for any money, he just plays because he likes it. He always comes in and asks about me and my life and what's new, and he usually likes to add something about how much he likes tall girls, which makes me a little uncomfortable because he's old enough to be my grandfather, but that's ok. He also defends us when someone is rude or inconsiderate and he has some great stories to share. His music isn't too bad, either.

Then there's Chyna. Yeah, Chyna as in the wrestler turned reality TV star turned addict who then went back to reality TV. She lives in the area and works out at the gym across the street. She is probably one of the sweetest people I've ever met. She is super chatty with me and always remembers our conversations. When I was studying for the LSAT she would, without fail, ask me how it was going. She gets either a mocha with soy or a caramel macchiato with soy and, apparently, will ask for me if she doesn't see me. She might not be the best role model, but by getting to know her just a little bit, I'm rooting for her to pull through and gain success.

It's people like these that really make me appreciate working in customer service. Every time I see one of them, I'm reminded that if I were working in any other profession, I wouldn't meet such interesting characters, and we all know that the characters are the ones that make life interesting!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Ok, if I only have $20 to last me the week, should I save it for gas or should I get the cute top?

Don’t you hate it when the things you think you’ll love, you actually end up hating? Ok, maybe not hating, but really not enjoying as much as you had thought you would?

I went to see Confessions of a Shopaholic with my mom recently and, even thought the clothes were great, I wasn’t very happy with it. Actually, I was rather frustrated.

For those who live under a rock, here’s the deal: Rebecca Bloomwood is a journalist who can’t control her spending habits. She buys things she doesn’t need with money she doesn’t have, thus leaving her in debt. She loses her job and, after embellishing her resume a bit, she finds a new one at a financial magazine. Needless to say, hilarity ensues while she finds success at the same time drowning in debt.

I’ll start off with the good: the clothes! Patricia Field, as per usual, does a fabulous job of styling Isla Fisher’s Rebecca Bloomwood. She puts together outrageous things that no one in real life could wear, but somehow work so brilliantly on screen. My personal favorite had to be the white suit worn with a huge blue anchor pendant necklace. It was a really simple suit that, without the necklace, would have looked almost practical. But, add this huge chest-covering necklace, and you get a sense of a woman who is extravagant and stands out.

Another thing I did like about this film was its star, Isla Fisher. I don’t know much about her, so I can’t say I was going in expecting anything. She was funny and charming, even if I wasn’t that fond of the character or the story. I am interested to see what else she does down the line.

Now, on to why I didn’t like this film.

I pride myself on being logical and financially conscious. I might not be "savvy," but I do know what I spend and why I spend it. I don’t go shopping when I don’t have money and I don’t buy things to make me feel better or more complete. I might not know anything about investing or IRAs, but I know that if I don’t have enough money to pay for a new pair of shoes, I shouldn’t buy them. (Unless they are super-cute and on sale, in which case, I remind myself that credit cards were invented for such occasions. But even then, I have to really be in love, and since I’m a commitment-phobe, it’s kind of a long process.)

Anyway, I knew going in that this was a movie about a woman who couldn’t control her spending. She can’t stop herself from buying crap she doesn’t need and gets herself into all sorts of predicaments due to her debt. But, I really didn’t think about how it would make me feel. She uses labels and worthless items to validate who she is. No matter how entertaining the movie was, I couldn’t believe her total lack of self-control and how frustrating it was for me to watch. I just wanted to shake her!!! Even though she eventually grows and realizes what she has been doing, it didn’t seem to me like she had really changed. She ends up with a man who could totally support her shopping habit, therefore making the need to change unnecessary. Plus, he's her boss, so it's not like she has an issue with job security.

I had started reading the book before I went to see it, but have since stopped. The same issue that I had with film—of her not truly changing—I’m sure I’m going to have with the book. Especially since it’s a series. I understand that this is a common problem with people in America and that’s why the series is so popular, but when I’m being entertained, I rarely want something realistic. Hence the reason I watch The City.

(A little footnote: John Salley plays a former NRebbBA basketball star who attends “Shopaholics Anonymous" with Rebecca. When he came on the screen, I was the only one that laughed. No one else had any idea who he was, and, consequentially, turned and looked at me like I was crazy. Which made me laugh even harder.)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Neither Barbies nor Tattoos are Evil...Please Calm Down

I don’t know which is worse: The fact that Mattel has released a Tattoo Barbie or that a West Virginia politician is trying to ban the sale of Barbies completely.

I’ll start with “Totally Stylin’ Tattoos Barbie."(Known on some blogs as "Tramp Stamp Barbie")

So the doll comes with “tattoos” for both you and your doll. You put them on with a “tattoo gun” (basically a purple water gun) and they are temporary and come off with a little soap and water. You can put tattoos anywhere on her and then share her with your friends!

I can’t say that I’m really surprised. Barbie has always gone with the trends and tattoos have become pretty damn trendy. The issue that I have, though, is that Mattel is claiming this doll will give kids a chance to be creative and express themselves. You know what, when I was growing up, I did have a Tattoo Barbie. It was the doll that I took a marker to and drew on. Then, when that got boring or I covered her completely in marker and had no other place to put any more of my gorgeous drawings, I would put stickers on her. Sometimes, I would even cut off all her hair and give her cool tats on her head. I didn’t need a special kit to express my creativity and I think that NOT having a kit forced me to be more creative. There is nothing wrong with having a Tattoo Barbie, but don’t market it as a way for kids to express their creativity. These dolls are just a way for Mattel to sell you more crap you don’t need for twice the price.

Not that I’m against Barbie or Mattel. I had Barbies growing up and I loved them. I don’t think that she should be banned.

In West Virginia, Jeff Eldridge, a DEMOCRAT (yeah, a Democrat—apparently not all Democrats are as liberal as some like to think. Unless he's a male feminist, which is a whole other issue...), has proposed House Bill 2918 that states (according to the West Virginia Legislature Web site): “It shall be unlawful in the state to sell 'Barbie' dolls and other similar dolls that promote or influence girls to place an undue importance on physical beauty to the detriment of their intellectual and emotional development.”

I’ll pause for this to sink in.

Here’s the thing. We all know that Barbie is not someone that little girls should aspire to look like. That said, think about all the great things Barbie has done in her 50 years of "life."How many careers has she had? How many different personas has she taken on? Plus, to Mattel’s credit, she has evolved with the times. In 1959, the only career Barbie had was Teenage Fashion Model, but in 2004, she was a Presidential Candidate. If Hilary Clinton looked like Barbie do you think Jeff Eldridge would call her a “detriment” to the “intellectual and emotional development” of young girls? Actually, I think that if Hilary looked like Barbie, we'd definitely have a female prez right now.

If parents would do their jobs, this wouldn’t be an issue. All a mother has to do is teach her daughter that different types of bodies, faces, hair color, height, skin color, eye color, noses, lips, etc. are all beautiful and that she shouldn’t strive to look like anyone else but herself. Explain to her that she is the most beautiful when she is herself and to never let anyone tell her differently. Period.

Now, if we’re going to ban a doll, it should be Ken. Talk about making being a “detriment” to “emotional development.” How many women do you know who still think Ken is the “perfect man”? I was personally more of a Brad* girl myself ☺ Although, GI Joe can come invade my territory any day.

(*for those who don't know, "Brad" was Ken's black friend introduced in 1969)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Just because I enjoy romantic movies doesn't mean I want them to happen im my life...

So I was thinking after my last post that people are going to get the wrong impression. I'm really not as cynical about love as I may seem. I think that being in love and loving someone is great! But, I don't want someone to "complete" me. (ahem, Jerry McGuire) I also don't want to fall in love with someone and wait years and go through countless other relationships before we finally get it together (insert pretty much any romantic movie here). I also don't find DYING overlly romantic, thus any Nicholas Sparks based-on-the-book movie is not for me. (I'll explain The Notebook) This isn't to say that I don't love romantic movies just like any other woman. I just don't necessarily want some of this to happen in my life.

So, you're asking yourself right now, what are Kimmi's favorite romantic movies? Well, you're in luck! Here's a list of them for you! (In no particular order...but if you think about it, subliminally there might be a significance. Nothing is every truly unintentional)

Love Actually
*I know that it might be a little cliche to have the first movie on my list, but there are so many plots that it's like watching a bunch of movies at once. I love Liam Neeson and his son and, even though I'm not a huge Hugh Grant fan, I loved the story with him and the "chubby" girl. As Adam from work said, "That's they way you bring together a ton of big stars and keep it entertaining" (If you haven't seen He's Just Not That Into You, don't. It wasn't bad, but it's definitely not worth your 10 bucks.)

Pretty Woman
All you have to do is read any discription of this movie to know why I love it. A hooker gets taken in by a wealthy businessman, who falls in love with her. Come on! That's awesome! Plus, it's Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. You can't go wrong

10 Thing I Hate About YOu
This is where my love affair with Heath Ledger started. I know this isn't really a "romantic" movie, but it's funny and you get to see a cynical, independent woman fall in love with a guy that can keep up with her. I like to ignore the fact that she is going off to Sarah Lawerence and they probably didn't last very long.

The Notebook
Ok, there is a formula that every single Nicholas Sparks story has. Two people from "different sides of the tracks" fall in love, have an epic romance, and then one of them dies. A Walk to Remember, Message in a Bottle, Nights in Rodanthe, the list could go on. He has been very successful with this formula and has never strayed away from it. I kind of hate him for this. However, The Notebook is different. The book sticks to the formula, but the movie doesn't. Yes, they are from different sides of the tracks, but they live their life and then die together. They might not have had an easy life, but it was a good life. I hate to admit it, but this one is really good.

The Way We Were
How can you not love this move? Barbara and Robert. Heartache. Love. Laughter. Communism. Seriously, it doesn't get better than that. Plus, even though they break up and she sees him with his simple wife, she looks happy and remains herself. I really love it.

There are, of course, more of these that I love. But honestly, these are ones that I can watch over and over again and never get tired of. Although, I need to update a few to DVD because I've pretty much worn out the VHS!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

I'm not really a water sport kinda person, but....

I was watching Gilmore Girls the other night and there is a scene in one of the episodes between Lorelai and Emily (her mom) right after Lorelai has told Emily that she and Christopher are getting a divorce. (If you don't watch Gilmore Girls or have never seen the 7th season, then just keep reading.) Emily is upset because Richard (Lorelai's dad) has had a heart attack and now Emily must take care of a lot of the family business that Richard always took care of. She tells Lorelai that marriage is like being in a canoe and she feels that Richard has dropped his paddle and now she must do it herself, but can't, and now they are just going in circles. Then, Emily tells Lorelai that she, Lorelai, is in a kayak and can steer herself. In a nutshell, she is independent and can survive on her own.

I wanna be in a kayak.

I have never really liked the idea of being dependent on anyone else. It's not just the cynical side of me coming out, but my true need to do it on my own. I hate asking for help and will put it off until the very last second. I've always been that way. I like to solve my own problems and not put them onto other people. I don't know why, but it's always been that way. I don't like to feel I should rely on anyone else, because, inevitably, they will drop their paddle and we will just move in circles. This is probably why I am so averse to the idea of getting married.

I'm not saying I don't believe in marriage because I acutally think marriage is a great thing. If not for all the legal reasons, than to always have someone there for you when you need them and having someone who supports you and encourages you, etc. It's a great concept, but honestly, I think I need to come first. Not to say that I'll never get married, but it just won't be anytime soon.

I know a lot of my friends want to be in relationships and get married, but not me. I want to succeed on my own before I worry about succeeding with someone else. If I can't support myself and find my own way in the world, how would I ever be happy? I know that I have a long way to go before I'm happy with myself and my life, so why would I want to go through this process with someone else to worry about?

Maybe, eventually, I'll be ready for one of those two-person kayaks. That way, if my partner drops his paddle, I don't have to worry.