Accept That You Don’t Love What You Think You Love

This rule resonated with me intensely when I read it the other night.

Examine the things that you love to do. Pick out the things that you actually love doing and leave the things that you feel you’re supposed to love doing.

For example, I have accepted that I don’t like going to see live music. I get uncomfortable in crowds, I get pissy when I can’t see and then irritated when I can finally see the band and they stand there like sad statues. I connect most with music when I’m alone.

Look at your life, at the persona you’ve created for yourself, and find out who you’re feeding. Are you feeding yourself and your desires? Or are you feeding others what you think they want to be fed? Are you feeding yourself empty spoonfuls of what you think you should like?

I should appreciate classical music, the wonder of childbirth, Wes Anderson movies, impractical shoes, poetry, Sigeur Rose, Jennifer Lawrence, ballroom dancing, bowling and shopping. I should, as a moderately hip 30 something white girl, appreciate at least some of those things. I feel like I should. I don’t.

And that’s okay.

I love being alone. I love devouring books so quickly that they leave me breathless. I love baking and giving away the results. I love helping other people instead of myself. I love bad reality tv, long and selfish baths, long drives on roads I’ve never seen. I love human connection. I love being away from the city and dreaming that someday I could live on the coast or in the mountains. I love Taco Bell, cheap clothes, open mic comedy, karaoke, funny looking dogs. I love the rush of enthusiasm for a new project, even if that project is never completed.

I accept this. And damn it feels good….to be a gangster. Everyone is old enough for that joke, right?

 

Advertisements

NEW BLOG!!

I’m such a blog whore….

I’ve been over at my new one VANITYHAG. It’s full of snark, fashion, celebrity mocking and lots of boozing. If you miss me, go find me over there.

xoxoxo-

Monroe

Esthetician Tips: How To Not Age Like A Hag

After years and years of sitting in dark rooms, scrubbing people’s faces and patiently explaining that, yes, washing your face is non-negotiable if you want better skin, I gave up and switched to being a full time waxer. Facials and skincare require a zen calm that I do not possess. Genitals are much more my speed.

The subject of skincare occasionally comes up with friends and clients and I am still stupefied by the lack of knowledge that perfectly sensible women have. So I’m going to share with you the most basic of skincare rules, the non-negotiable musts in order to stay youthful and dewey as long as possible.

1. Wear Your Motherfuckin’ Sunscreen

beach

Seriously. It’s not hard. Don’t whine and tell me that your make-up has SPF 15 in it because that doesn’t count. Why? Because you should be slapping on a minimum of SPF 30 DAILY. Your sunscreen needs to protect you from UVB and UVA rays so you need one that has either zinc oxide or titanium dioxide. Your make-up doesn’t have either of those in it generally. It’s not going to kill you to find a face sunscreen and use it before you put on your make-up. A good rule of thumb is to go by thickness when applying your facial products. Serum goes on first, moisturizer second and sunscreen last.

Even in winter, when some of us don’t see the sun for months, we are still being hit with UVA rays. Those rays are responsible for cancer and aging the skin. So don’t slack on it just because it’s cloudy. Working inside all day is no excuse either, you can get sun damage while driving, walking or biking to work. Don’t forget your neck and chest too.

So just put some on!!

2. Take Care Of Your Hands

madonna

Madonna looks great for a fifty something year old broad. Demi Moore does too. Then you look at their hands and knees. No matter how much botox and plastic surgery you get, your hands will tell your true age.

So guess what? Put sunscreen on them! All that time you spend driving around with your hands on the steering wheel is time that those pesky UVA rays are gleefully creating future liver spots on your skin. Keep some sunscreen in your car for that reason! Moisturizing is key as well, obviously.

 

3. Learn How To Properly Cleanse Your Face

tumblr_m5uzpyYtrC1qdohz1o1_500

Most the time we slap on some cleanser, moosh it around for thirty seconds and then splash it off with hot water. Shockingly, that doesn’t remove even half of the crap on your face. Therefore, you’re still going to bed with a dirty face and whatever product you put on afterwards isn’t able to do it’s full job because there’s a layer of make-up and grime sitting between it and your skin.

First off, figure out the proper cleanser for your skin. I usually have a creamy one and a foaming one. When my face is more dry I’ll go creamy, when I’m oily and breaking out I grab the foaming kind. There are also amazing treatment cleansers out there that can be used twice a week to kick your skin’s ass into clarity.

Next, cleanse thoroughly. Start with a damp face and massage in your cleanser of choice. Do this for a full minute, count in your head. Then remove the cleanser with a wet washcloth or cotton rounds. This way you’re actually removing the make-up. Once you see how much comes off on the cloth you’ll be amazed. A second cleanse is a good idea if you wear a fair amount of make-up.

Last, use a non alcohol based toner to swipe up any remaining grime and then apply your night moisturizer.

4. Wash Your Pillowcase

dog in bed

On the subject on the cleanliness, your pillowcase is nasty. You drunkenly sleep in your make-up on it. You drool on it, yes, yes you do. Your dog sleeps on it. You cat rubs it’s ass on it. You fling it on the floor while having wild, dirty sex. That shit is covered in nasty. And you put your clean face on it and snuggle in.

Wash it.

Clean your phone screen while you’re at it.

5. Speaking Of Sleeping…

Bed_story_II__by_messtor

Photo by Messtor

We’ve all woken up with creases in our faces from sleeping hard, face down with a fist jammed up under our chin. Think about the wear and tear that will cause over the next 30 years. Be nicer to your body when you sleep. My massage therapist told me to train myself to sleep on my back. I haven’t been able to master that but I am more conscience of the stress I put on my limbs and skin while sleeping.

Don’t want that accordion boob crease down the middle of your chest like your mom? Then quit sleeping on your side with your arms squished together. Try sleeping on your side with your outside shoulder and arm relaxed with your arm resting on your hip. It unsquishes the chest area and you don’t wake up with soon to be irreversible vertical wrinkles there.

Be aware of your face as well. Try not to mash it into your pillow. Some girls suggest satin pillow cases as anti-aging secrets. Personally I haven’t had one since I was 7. It was purple and my tiny head kept sliding off it so I eventually made it into a dress for my cat. But hey, whatever works for you.

These are my most simple skincare tips. There are far more in depth things you can do but if you’re like me, shallow yet lazy, then this is the bare minimum you should be doing.

 

The Guilt Of Wanting That White Dress: I Wanna Get Married

As a buck toothed, socially awkward child, I never dreamt about my wedding. I daydreamed about being a rockstar in a band called The Crystal Unicorns. That was my life goal. Be the lead singer in a terribly named band and wear metallic outfits and a whorish amount of eye make-up. The pretty white dress and prince charming thing wasn’t on my radar.

unicorn2_512

Obvious band mascot. Crystal Unicorn 4 Lyfe!!

At the tender age of 20 I found myself engaged, having said yes to a spontaneous proposal from my equally young boyfriend. We went ring shopping and I picked out something hideous that I would never wear now. I tried on strapless wedding gowns with my mom and stared at myself in the mirror dumbly while she got teary eyed. I didn’t really care about getting married but someone had asked me and that was exciting. I loved him as much as I could love anyone with my wee heart.

Obviously, we broke up. I never got that hideous wedding band or any of the bland dresses I had tried on. The boyfriend/fiance is still one of my best friends but thank christ we didn’t get married.

Now as I barrel towards 35 (I’m 32 and yes, I love being dramatic), marriage has become something I think of often. Not so much what sort of foofy dress I’d have but what it would mean for me to be legally and symbolically bound to my wonderful partner. Okay and maybe I plan to have a farm wedding complete with mason jar glasses and drunken dancing in a field. Maybe.

blogwed2
 What I didn’t expect to feel along with the giddiness of finding someone I want to marry is the guilt of wanting a god damn wedding.

A lot of us do a good job of playing it cool in our twenties. “I don’t need a wedding to prove I love this person, I just love them.” Or…“I don’t need a piece of paper to tell me I love someone.” And my personal favorite and perhaps the most continually uttered cool kid phrase, “I don’t believe in the institution of marriage, man.”

I’ve been guilty of saying all of those things. Maybe not the last one actually.

As a counter culture girl I feel that there’s an expectation that I should be above silly things like country weddings. I should be more advanced in my thinking, not caught up in old fashioned ideals and antiquated ceremonies. I shouldn’t long for a diamond ring just because I’ve been told to by De Beers. I’m smarter than that.

Right?

Fuck no, I’m not.

But I feel like a huge asshole for wanting those things.

So why do I want a wedding and a ring?

First off as a white mutt with no heritage or cultural traditions, the only thing I knew for sure (or hoped) was that someday some wonderful man was going to propose to me with a ring and I would get to walk down an aisle with my father. White mutts don’t get quinceaneras, no bat mitzvahs. I got a shaving lesson and a box of tampons. Then there’s no epic milestones left. Unless you count turning 21 and get shit housed, peeing on someone’s lawn and barfing in your hair as a milestone. I do.

As far as the diamond ring goes, I don’t need a diamond. But if it’s gonna be on my hand forever, I damn well better like looking at it. So it better be pretty. Why a ring at all? Because I like the tradition. And because I’m a shallow fucking asshole. 

Oh, the guilt.

The wedding itself. Why not get married at the courthouse? Two reasons, I’m a shallow fucking asshole. AND…I’ve only had two friends get married so far (well three if you count my best friend who ran off to the god damn courthouse and robbed me of the chance of being a maid of honor) and both weddings were such emotional, beautiful celebrations of love. I cried at both of them. To witness people you love be SO IN LOVE and watch them weep as they say their own vows is freakin’ awesome. There’s nothing I love more than to feel, however briefly, like people are amazing creatures who don’t trample each other at Walmart black friday events. To see the absolute good in people at that moment. To have that feeling fill a room and bind everyone together is just gorgeous. And then to have all your friends get drunk on the cheap champagne you provided and dance in their party clothes to music none of them would usually be caught dead listening to, that’s the icing on the cake.

square-dancing-wedding

I don’t need a $50,000 wedding. I need my family and my friends to come together in one place, cry while I cry, laugh while I laugh, dance drunkenly with me and make memories that I’ll look back on with a smile on my face. Because I am a huge pussy. I love love. I love people. I just want to put you all in my pocket and squeeze you.

 

Hello, Love..

How often are you sitting on the couch or in the car driving next to your partner and you look over and think something to the effect of “Gah, I love this person/I want to kiss this person/I really want you all up in my lady parts”? I don’t know how much men do this because I don’t pretend to know anything about the mysteries of dudebrain. As a woman, I feel like I do this fairly often though I tend to not act on it due to a commercial break getting over and Breaking Amish being back on.

Lately I’ve been trying to grab onto these thoughts as they pop in my head and force them out of my mouth before they can go flitting away. It’s the same general idea as my first homework challenge except with this one you have the possibility of getting laid. Score!

I’ve always been a broken record about how wooing is so important in relationships but I haven’t always followed my own stellar advice. Hence a fair amount of failed relationships. Currently, I’m trying to heed some of the brilliant advice I give by telling my boo that I adore him when it pops into my head. I’m kissing him when I look over and think, “Good lord, what a purdy mouth that man has”. I’m generally being more affectionate because I’m always having affectionate thoughts, I’m just not acting on them as much as I should.

This goes for sex too. How often do you think, oh we’ll have sex later, then you go to dinner and a movie or finish a marathon of Dexter and suddenly sleeping sounds much more appealing than dickin’? Why not just have sex when the mood strikes you? Even if just the inkling of the mood strikes you.

See how everyone wins here? everybody feels more loved and gets more sex.

WIN.

Homework Challenge #1: Be Nice

Yes, homework.

Every now and again, I’m going to give you (and myself) homework to do. Perhaps a challenge is a more apt way to put it. This week’s challenge is incredibly simple. You can do it from your own couch. You have no excuse to not do it. Not doing it means that you readily admit that you are a cold hearted snake (what, what Paula Abdul…shit, if you’re too young for that reference then you need to do some serious youtubing).

This is a two part challenge.

1. Compliment A Stranger

I told you this wasn’t hard.

We spend a lot of time judging other people. We snark to our friends about a passing girl’s outfit. We mock our karaoke peers. We mimic the way people walk and the way they talk. We are endlessly and thoughtlessly mean throughout the day, generally with no malicious intent. It’s almost automatic.

Why isn’t it automatic to be friendly, to silently admire someone’s cat patterned sweater? It seems that cruelty comes more easily to most of us, even though we’re not cruel people.

I compliment my clients relentlessly. I don’t do it in the hopes that my tips will be bigger. I do it because I love the visible effect it has on them. They shy smile that spreads across a girl’s face when you tell her that she has gorgeous lashes, amazing brows or even how nice her tan looks. I’m always looking for something beautiful in my clients because I offer a service (waxing) that is both mentally and physically uncomfortable for them. A compliment does multiple things: Breaks the ice, sets the girl at ease, makes her happy and hopefully makes her day a little brighter.

Sometimes when I’m extra cranky with the world I drive around the city and try to say something positive about everything I see. It’s hard and sometimes I really have to stretch the truth but it’s an excellent exercise for your brain. Doing it even once a week can help tweak you little by little into more positive thought patterns.

So tell the grocery clerk you love her hair. Tell the deli guy his glasses are dope. Tell the old lady down the street that it’s nice to see her and to have a wonderful day.

Be very concise and please do not be creepy. And smile.

2. Compliment A Loved One

This is the easier part but also the more important one.

I’m having an incredibly shitty day. I would like to slap the shit out of myself every time I hear myself talk. It happens, just one of those days. On these days, I assume everyone else wants to slap me as well. They might. Also on these days, I realize how much I desperately need someone to tell me something about me that is worthwhile.

So I sit down and send out texts to the first three people that pop into my head. I told my best friend I adored her and miss her. My girlfriend I saw today got a message telling her how grateful I am that she’s in my life and how I think she’s utterly wonderful. Then one to my mom, who absorbs love like a hungry sponge (much like me) and who I love fiercely but need to tell more often.

Not hard, eh?

We all vent and bitch about the people in our lives but how often do we appreciate them out loud? Why not take a few minutes every now and then to text, e-mail, call or say in person, “You’re awesome and I’m so glad I have you around me”.

Everyone loves to hear something positive about themselves. Especially from people they love and respect. Plus, all that love you’re giving out is bound to come boomaranging back at you eventually so you win as well.

Go forth and give out some good vibes, shower people with compliments and put some positive energy into the world for a change. Your brain will thank you. Then come and tell me all about it.