Thursday, March 27, 2014


My sister heard this story about a friend of a friend named Billy. IT KILLS ME!  ENJOY!

Billy was the youngest sibling.  He had an older brother who would occasionally push him down to the ground, pin him down with his knees, and then tell him: “We’re gonna play typewriter”.  The older brother would then proceed to take his pointer fingers and type on Billy's chest as hard as he could, and after awhile he’d tell him: “Say ding”.  Billy would refuse, and the big brother would type harder on his chest, constantly saying: “Say DING!”  So Billy would eventually cave and he would say “ding” and then the big brother would take his right hand and slap him across the face, like how you used to return the carriage on a typewriter.

Ok this is is SO HORRIBLE, but I have to admit that it made me laugh!  Kids are the meanest people on Earth!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014


My hairdresser (Jeannie) and I were talking about her brother, Jim.  Jim committed suicide several months ago.  

Jim was in his seventies, in poor health, and he suffered from severe depression.  He was in and out of mental hospitals in recent years -- particularly after his wife passed away -- and  he was on many medications.  He tried every treatment you can think of, including shock therapy. But nothing seemed to REALLY help him.  Eventually he gave up, placed a gun to his head and took his own life.  

Jeannie has been taking care of Jim's affairs after his passing -- first dealing with the shock/horror/guilt/shame of the matter, then notifying family and friends, then planning the funeral, then dealing with estate matters, then figuring out what to keep/give away/sell, then dealing with taxes, all the while trying to manage her grief.  Jim's sons have helped somewhat with these issues, and it has been difficult for all involved.  

Jeannie's husband dropped by Jim's house the other day and he called Jeannie to tell her that he found a mysterious box. He said that the box was sealed tight and that it had this message scrawled on it: "DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT OPENING THIS FUCKING BOX!!!"  After hearing this, Jeannie asked her husband, "Well what was in the box?!?!?!?!?!?"  Her husband yelled, "That's the difference between me and you!   I would never open that box!  I would never go against Jim's wishes!"  Jeannie thought over the situation for a bit, and ended up telling her nephews (Jim's sons) about it.  One nephew said he would go check it out the following day.  The next day Jeannie sent her nephew a text and asked him what was in the box. The nephew did not respond.  4 days later, the nephew still had not responded.  The whole situation was driving Jeannie crazy -- WHAT WAS IN THAT FUCKING BOX?!?!?!?! 

Now that I have heard the story it is driving ME crazy, and I won't even get to hear the outcome until I go back to get my hair done next month.  Argh!!!!!

Would YOU open the box??????  I would open that box lickety-split. I would have to know what was inside.  

This whole situation makes me think about what we leave behind after we die.  Someone will find our stuff.  All of it -- the meaningful, the meaningless, the scandalous, the good, and the bad.  YIKES.  I certainly wouldn't want anyone poking around in my stuff while I am living, but I suppose it is ok if they see it all after I am gone.  At least I think so.

Thoughts on this????

P.S. The boyfriend recently received a call notifying him that a family friend had passed away.  He expressed his condolences and asked if there was anything he could do to help.  He was told there was one thing he could do that would help SO MUCH -- he could come over and haul away the deceased's rather extensive 70's porno magazine collection before the kids and grandkids found it.  Gulp. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

No. 2


The boyfriend has three kids.  The oldest son (Julian) plays baseball year 'round, so that means the family is subjected to baseball practice and baseball games every week. The boyfriend has to drag all three kids to these affairs, and I am sure it gets tiresome for the two that don't play baseball.

At a recent baseball game, the youngest son (Kiya) was SILENT.  For the entire game.  Except when number 2, a kid with the last name Ruiz, got up to bat.  Each time Ruiz was at bat, Kiya came alive, yelling with great enthusiasm, "LET'S GO NUMBER 2!!!!!"

Of course I find this absolutely hilarious, because apparently I have the same level of humor as a 9-year old boy.  

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Stupid Ads

Thoughts on these Charisma ads with Scott Foley?

I have always had a tough time taking any kind of interest in The Foley. Maybe his annoyingly earnest face is what kills the deal for me, and the Koolaid lips he sported way back when during the Felicity years certainly didn't help his cause.  Bleh.  But at least these stupid ads made me laugh, so I guess that is a win.  Maybe.

Charisma Scott Foley

Charisma ad Scott Foley

Scott Foley - Charisma ad

Scott Foley Charisma ad

Charisma Ad Scott-Foley

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Paulette Tavormina

Paulette Tavormina, Flowers & Fish III, after G.V.S. (from the series Flowers, Fish & Fantasies), 2012

Paulette Tavormina, Plums and Chinese Walnuts, after G.G. (from the series Natura Morta), 2013

Paulette Tavormina, Fish Bone, after P.C. (from the series Natura Morta), 2008

Paulette Tavormina, Peaches and Morning Glories, after G.G. (from the series Natura Morta), 2010

Paulette Tavormina, Cardoon and Radishes, after J.S.C. (from the series Natura Morta), 2010

Paulette Tavormina, Crab Apples, after B.V.D.A. (from the series Natura Morta), 2008

Paulette Tavormina, Roses and Figs (from the series Natura Morta), 2013

Paulette Tavormina, Lemons & Pomegranates, after J.V.H. (from the series Natura Morta), 2010

Paulette Tavormina, Bread & Dragonfly, after J.V.H. (from the series Natura Morta), 2012

Paulette Tavormina, Flowers & Fish I, after G.V.S. (from the series Flowers, Fish & Fantasies), 2012

Paulette Tavormina, Lemons & Prickly Pears (from the series Natura Morta), 2013

Paulette Tavormina, Watermelon Radishes (from the series Natura Morta), 2009

Paulette Tavormina, Blueberries and Apricots (from the series Natura Morta), 2013

Paulette Tavormina, Quince, after G.G. (from the series Natura Morta), 2009

Paulette Tavormina, Basket of Fruit, after M.M.D.C. (from the series Natura Morta), 2011

Paulette Tavormina, Crabs and Lemon, after P.C. (from the series Natura Morta), 2009

Paulette Tavormina, Apples and Peas, after J.S.C. (from the series Natura Morta), 2010

Paulette Tavormina

Artist Statement:

I have long been drawn to the seventeenth century Old Master Still Life painters Giovanna Garzoni, Francisco de Zurbaran, and Adriaen Coorte. I am particularly fascinated by Zurbaran's mysterious use of dramatic light, Garzoni's masterful compositions and color palette, and Coorte's unique placements of objects.

Seventeenth century Europe witnessed an explosion of interest in the natural world. Botanical encyclopedias from the period are records of the discoveries made on extensive explorations during this "Golden Age" of global trading. Still life painters incorporated shells, insects, exotic fruits, and flowers found abroad alongside Venetian glass and Chinese porcelain. Their vignettes served as a tribute to newly discovered corners of the world. Worldly in their composition, these paintings also speak to universal themes as relevant then as now: the fragility of life and love, fleeting beauty and tempus fugit, the swift passage of time.

Standing in front of these paintings at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York or The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, I am struck by their strong emotional resonance, their ability to transcend time and place. I imagine Coorte, Zurbaran, Garzoni, and their contemporaries as they gathered worldly treasures and guotidian objects to tell of newfound wealth, passion, and the inevitable passage of time. The essence of these paintings lingers with me as I gather my own flora, fauna, butterflies and treasured antiques to create the romantic vignettes within my photographs.

The Natura Morta images I have made in response to the Old Masters are intensely personal interpretations of timeless, universal stories. Years from now, I hope that the photographs I create will affect someone as deeply as the Old Masters' paintings have affected me. In one of these paintings, the artist included the words "Eram Qvod Es." The translation resonates within me: "Once I was what you are now."

For more of Paulette Tavormina's jaw-droppingly captivating works (!!FLORALS!!) -- click here to see a feature on

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Hey TV: Stop Raping Women

Yesterday I read this article by Karen Valby in Entertainment Weekly and thought I would share it with you:

They’re scenes all too familiar to any TV viewer: A woman is shoved down, she screams or sobs, her eyes grow wide and then blank as she wills herself anywhere else in the world. Lately the small screen has felt particularly thick with such moments of sexual horror, as writers have been churning out story lines in which our saints, our heroines, and our hard and cruel women too, are raped or forced to relive their nightmare of it. Try to imagine a singular abuse endured by an equivalent number of male characters. And yet it seems whenever a female character needs a juicy arc or humanizing touch, writers fall back on the easy, awful crime of rape.
In a particularly cold-blooded move, Julian Fellowes & Co. went after Anna Bates (Joanne Froggatt), the beloved lady’s maid on Downton Abbey, earlier this season. Was there really nothing anyone could think to do with her character now that she and her husband, Bates, were enjoying a spot of happiness? Fans were subjected to a scene of Anna being viciously taken down by a visiting valet—a man, incidentally, her husband had repeatedly warned her against, but she was too naive and soft to heed his spider sense. We were spared a scene of Anna’s actual rape, but the before and after were brutal. Her disheveled hair and busted lip, her cry that she’d been soiled and would kill herself if she became pregnant. When she recoils from her unknowing husband’s touch, Bates assumes he must have failed her in some way. “It must be my fault, because she is incapable of fault,” he says. Yes, Anna is a flawless character, and such goodness doesn’t always make for interesting drama, so the writers opted to rip off her dress rather than peel back some layers of her decency.

No one would accuse Scandal's First Lady, Mellie Grant (Bellamy Young), of being a saint, and God bless that woman for her rich and weird tangle of needs and motivations. She had established herself as one of the show’s best characters—so wounded in one moment and callous the next—when we were given a flashback episode to Fitz’s early gubernatorial run: Mellie, her eye firmly on the prize, tries to engage in a late-night strategy session with Fitz’s drunken bull of a father. Suddenly the man forces her down on the sofa and rapes her.

Many fans found the act a cruel device to trigger viewer compassion for a woman it isn’t always easy to like. This strikes me as problematic. One already felt so deeply for Mellie’s toxic and vulnerable brew, so why subject the audience to yet another scene of a woman’s physical humiliation? The crime here is of unnecessity. Granted, this is a show that burns through plot, but Mellie’s rape seemed like the cheap landing of a writers’-room story-line wheel. There are countless plot-generating life obstacles that don’t involve sexual assault (see: The Good Wife or, for that matter, almost any show with a male protagonist). We didn’t need to see Mellie on her back to know or like her better.
And why must female characters be likable in the first place? Take terrifying Claire Underwood (Robin Wright) from season 1 of House of Cards, for instance. You think she cares if we like her? Talk about someone who’s never complained to her book club that she’s sick of people-pleasing and doesn’t know how to take any “me” time. So how strange, how disappointing, to learn in season 2 that Claire was the victim of a rape in college. It’s not that women like Claire don’t get raped. Or that stories of abuse and survival and the cost of resilience aren’t important ones. But on the flip side, can’t we enjoy standing aghast in the face of Claire’s ruthlessness without saddling her with such an excruciating foundation? “You think I don’t want to smash things?” Claire snaps at her husband, Frank, after he flies into a rage when she identifies her attacker. “I know what that anger is more than you can imagine.”

Here’s something else to imagine: the idea that there are stories to tell about the sources of a woman’s anger, her ambition and fear, her brokenness and resolve, that don’t involve pinning her under some man’s heaving chest.

I have to thank the author for writing this article that articulated why I was SO ANGRY with the last season of Downton Abbey (as well as the episode in Scandal  when Mellie was raped by her own father-in-law).  I have a terrible time watching, reading, and/or hearing about rape.  It drives me out of my mind.  Mind you, I am never thrilled with murder or torture scenes either, but rape is a special kind of awful that leaves me incensed.  But I am conflicted.  Rape happens.  It is awful.  It is one of the worst things one human can do to another.  Is it better to reveal (exploit?) this so that we all become sensitive to it and learn how to handle it, and possibly make it more socially unacceptable?  Or is it better to not give it attention?  I guess the proper treatment of such difficult matters isn't easy to determine.  

Thoughts on this? 

P.S. Male rape is as loathsome as female rape.  It was mortifying to see the rape scenes in the last season of Sons of Anarchy.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Misidentifying Celebrities


Do you know anyone that is absolutely TERRIBLE at identifying famous people?  

My boss called a few minutes ago from the airport.  His plane was about to take off and he called to tell me that someone famous was on his flight.  He said she was brunette, about 30 and pregnant.  He knew she was famous but he just had no idea who she was.  UH, hello?!?!?  What am I supposed to do with that information?!?!?!? (Note: occasionally a celebrity comes to our gallery to look at art -- including this guy -- and my boss never knows who they are.  LOL!  I guess that is why I am here!)

The boyfriend is AWFUL at identifying celebrities.  We were watching the Academy Awards show on Sunday, and the camera panned to Jennifer Garner.  The boyfriend looked at her and said, "The Notebook!"  UM, Jennifer Garner WAS NOT IN The Notebook! Rachel McAdams was in The Notebook!  It made me wonder if every brunette looks alike to him, and if he'd even be able to pick ME out of a line-up of chicks with brown hair!  Yeesh.

A little while later the boyfriend was talking about the movie 12 Years a Slave.  He mentioned that Tom Cruise was in the movie.  WTF?!?!??!  I knew that wasn't true even though I hadn't seen the movie!  Brad Pitt was the good-looking white dude in the movie, NOT Tom Cruise.  

The boyfriend's oldest son clearly takes after his father, in that he thinks every blonde male actor is Matt Damon.  ?!

My co-worker and I were recapping our thoughts on the Academy Awards show when she asked me what I thought about Barbra Streisand's performance.  LOL!  It wasn't Barbra Streisand, it was Bette Midler!

I could go on and on.  Maybe it is best that everyone cannot correctly identify celebrities.  After all, my "skill" of being able to CORRECTLY identify celebrities hasn't really gotten me far in life!   I guess we each decide what is worth memorizing, be it celebrity-related matters or something that actually matters.