Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Two Thumbs Down, Hollyweird

These past few nights have actually been pretty cold. Welcomly cold, but cold. After I've gotten home from the gym or yoga I have spent a few extra minutes standing under the shower and marveling at what a great feeling that is, when you're cold. Everyone who is feeling angry right now, go get real real cold then stand under a hot shower. All is not lost.

Last night was no exception, and it was so cold that we finally just decided to get in bed and watch a movie. I wanted a sweet, quiet, un-tense movie so I picked "Pearl Harbor." Just kidding, that's just a little World War II humor for your Wednesday. I really picked "Julie and Julia." I've seen it a few times before and love it. Unassuming and heart-smiley. Classic Nora Ephron.

I still love the way she portrays Julie's marriage, but I wouldn't be human if there were not still a twinge of disappointment every time I watch the movie now, knowing that Julie spent two years shortly after her book was published in the midst of an affair. And then she continued the affair, and her marriage, simultaneously, even while her husband knew about it. That makes my brain hurt. (And my heart.)

Please understand I am trying my best not to judge. Infidelity is wrong. But I don't know Julie, or her husband, and I don't know how difficult it must have been for the two of them, etc. I'm sad for what they went through.

But stick with me.

Last Friday it was cold again, and on Friday nights AB and I tend to want to stay in. No real reason other than we're usually tired to our bones and don't feel like putting on eyeliner. (Speaking for myself here.) So I went to pick up some Chinese food and Aar told me to stop at Blockbuster and pick something out, which was really not smart of him, so I made him pay for his mistake by renting "Salmon Fishing in the Yemen."

*Spoiler Alert*

Dude. That movie was terrible. Just awful. The only redeeming thing about it was the scenery. I don't know anything about Yemen, but now I know it has pretty valleys and rocks and great sunsets, so.

But in the beginning of the movie, you are introduced to Ewan McGregor's mean, meanie wife. She just does NOT have the time of day for him! Oh me oh my she is just so busy and important! Very cliche.

Then, after Ewan falls for Emily Blunt (eat a cheeseburger) he decides that he and his wife should break up. Before he makes this monumental decision, however, Emily tells him - Ewan! (I mean his name is something else, but really it's just Ewan) - Ewan! You must follow your heart! You must be happy!

Then he breaks up with his wife via text message. Can we just talk for a second about how he breaks up with his wife via text message? And it wasn't even words it was just the emoji of an orange cat with spectacles followed by a thumbs down. (Just kidding but that might've been better, actually.)

And this might go without saying, because it's Ewan, but needless to say he is portrayed as our lovely, humble hero of the movie.


It is such a strange sensation to realize that we have so wholly inverted our cultural definition of courage. And I don't mean to sound like your grandpa, but also our definition of honor. Since when is it "super like totally brave" to 'follow your heart'? Following your heart is the easiest damn thing to do in the world! You want something, so you allow yourself to have it. That's what two-year-olds do with fruit roll-ups, hombre. Real courage is doing what you don't want to do because you made a committment. Right? No, but right? Do we still agree on that or am I literally your grandpa now?

And then we are supposed to sympathize with Ewan? I guess I don't know for sure but the sweeping violins and the cheesy kissing scene with Emily Blunt tells my movie senses that yes, he is indeed our lovely hero boy as referenced previously. But isn't he kind of repugnant? Didn't we kind of lose respect for him? Didn't he just break up with his wife via text message because he 'wasn't happy'?

Was he not willing to work for it? Did he not take his vows seriously at all? Was he not willing to fight for it, or to endure a little bit of boredom or a little bit of inattention in order to serve the person he promised to serve always? I mean, how would he take himself seriously after that? You apparently promised someone you'd care for them in sickness and health and until they die but the real tipping point was if she won't listen to your stupid stories about salmon sometimes?

You guys, what's going on?

It makes me sad. I don't know what's going to happen in my life, ok? I don't know how hard some years will be, or how easy, or how whatever. But I do know that I take my vows, both to Aaron and to God, extremely seriously. My priority with Aaron is to love him, even if he's boring me or if he doesn't like PF Chang's and even if one day we're on a rocky road. Even if one day I don't like him. (I can't imagine that day.) Aaron is my priority, just like breathing in and out is a priority. I would not have married him if I didn't mean that.

I think that's the issue. Maybe don't get married if you're the kind of person who considers it a possibility that one day you might text "sorry it's for the best" and then go kiss a skinny broad in the middle east.

It also annoys me how manipulative the movie gets. Why doesn't the director include Ewan's wedding to his wife 15 years ago at the beginning? Show them laughing, making promises, being together and happy about it. And then show their slow decline, and their ignoring of each other, and then end with Emily Blunt. And then we'll see how we all feel.

Gross, is how.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

To The Lukewarmers

Yesterday was a gorgeous day in downtown Phoenix. Pure blue sky, a slight breeze. It was 80 degrees, but that's ok, as long as summer knows it's not its turn yet. (Wait your turn.)

Center for Arizona Policy, the organization my guy works for, held a rally downtown to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Roe V. Wade and to encourage our state legislators (many of whom attended) to continue fighting to protect the rights of pre-born kids.

My plea to you is simply this: don't be a lukewarmer.

Is it a child, or isn't it? You have to decide. And then you have to be sure. It is not above your pay grade any more than declaring that any human being is a human being is above your pay grade. What an absurd thing to say! If you're 'not sure' if it's a child, yet you openly advocate for the right to kill How can that be? Would you eat a mushroom if you 'weren't sure' if it were poisonous? Would you blow up a building if you 'weren't sure' whether there were 55 million children inside of it?

And do you have to be a scientist to discover whether someone is a human? Can I know that I'm human, even if I'm not a doctor? Can you?

Whether it is a human or not is not a reality dependent on what we think. It exists outside of us. Find that reality. And then do something about it.

If it's not a child, half the country is attempting to oppress women. You'd better join the fight against that.

If it is a child, you can't do nothing. You cannot do nothing. You. cannot. do. nothing.

It is a child. We all know it.

Get sure. And then get up.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Maria's Happy Rules

1. Chipotle at least once a week; twice is never too much; three may often be warranted.
2. Do not look at your credit card statement more than twice a month.
3. Do not read blogs/click on pins/read tweets related to WEIGHT and GET FIT and LOVE YOUR SCALE and BIKINI BODY and YOU WILL BE BETTER IF YOU ARE THIS AND NOT THAT
4. Do not check MSNBC "out of curiosity, haha those lunatics."
5. Orange Juice.
6. At least one day a week, get up early enough to take a shower and then get BACK INTO BED for at least 15 minutes.
7. Answer phone with "you've got Maria" as often as you feel led.
8. More Sienfeld.
9. Throw the tennis ball around in the backyard with your dog.
10. Find a child. Earn a hug from said child. Soak up the child hug.
11. "Power of Love" by Celine Dion; volume equal to but not less than 15.
12. Do not try on your bathing suit during the winter months
13. More peanut butter; more spoons.
14. Remember: you are always planning a trip. There is always a trip in the future. Current possible targets to research heavily and often, especially in "google images" mode: Thailand, Santorini, Mallorca, Jersalem, Easter Island.
15. When at restaurants, look at the menu and say to yourself "I shall get what I would like" and then do that.
16. Watch "Say  Yes to the Dress" to feel grateful for your family that cried for every single dress you put on.
17. Read old journals to giggle.
18. Everyone who hurt your feelings in the past did it because they were secretly madly in love with you.
19. Look at Aaron. That dude married you. Check that out.
20. Pray. Believe He's listening.

I totally love Bob Harper. He is just gorgeous and he loves people and he's smart and funny and I like his weird clothes. I follow him on Twitter OBVI (omg, obvi) and yesterday I saw some link to his "skinny rules" (he has a book out by that name, apparently. And again - one must not question my love for Bob (and his dog Karl! KARL FOR A DOG'S NAME be still my soul!) - but his "skinny rules" were total bullshit. First of all, 'skinny' is a terrible word; I would have accepted "fit" and we could've discussed my problem with 'rules' another time, but 'skinny'? BOB.

And then as I was reading the rules and  chastising myself for not following them already and simultaneously making grand plans to begin following them right now right this minute I NEED SOME BLUEBERRIES STAT, I though, people would think I'm absolutely bonkers if I started doing these. Seriously, how roll-your-eyes annoyed would you be if I was constantly like "omg ya'll I can't go out to eat tonight or tomorrow or yesterday or right now because I need a glass of water first and I can't have carbs after lunch and I haven't eaten a raspberry today and I wasn't quite hungry went I went to bed last night." I mean seriously, that is complete bullshit! Maybe if I was overweight you'd be like "Girl! You go! Good for you!" but if I were a friend who was not, you'd be like "what a high-maintenance bitch." That double-standard is also bullshit, because we shouldn't discriminate against bullshit. Bullshit isn't ok if I'm fat. Bullshit is always bullshit and no one should live their life according to a list of bullshit rules that warrants constant second guesses to perform even the most mundane of social interactions.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Having Fun the AB Way

I'm feeling extra sweet on my sugar sweet husband this morning and so I thought to myself, I should write about it. But then I had a silly thought that I shouldn't, because my blog is supposed to be "funny" or "not too personal" or something like that, but upon reflection I think I'm wrong. Blogs aren't 'supposed' to be anything, much less my blog. I go through phases where I think, "I'll have one of those funny blogs" or "one of those fashiony blogs" or "one of those real deep-thinking blogs" but then I realize that sometimes a girl just wants to write about her painful reaction to a school shooting in one post and then show a picture of a homemade broccoli soup in another. Sometimes I feel cheeky, other times I feel sad, other times I feel like taking an iPhone photo of my toenails. Don't we all?

I think I read too many blogs about blogs, you know what I mean?

So now I'm going to type a few paragraphs about my husband, because I can, and because it will make me smile.

 Yesterday we got a new car. ("A NEWWWW CAR!" - Bob Barker) It is fabulous. It's a shiny blue SUV with a bluetooth system and reasonable payments. And we're buying it, not leasing it! Permanence!

As we were driving home calling everyone we know so that we could use the bluetooth, ("Hi Dad! Shut up Dad we have to call someone else") Aaron started talking about how nice it feels to actually make a big purchase. Because it sometimes feels like most 'big things' in our life are on loan... we rent our house, a lot of our furnishings are either leftover from dorm days or are second-hand... you know what I mean. So this brand new car is kind of a rite of passage for us. A Brand, New, CAR! (Bob, it's ok. Take a break.)

While Aaron jabbered on excitedly about this prospect I marveled once again at how hard this dude loves life. Things are Fun for Aaron. You don't understand. Everything is FUN for Aaron. Making waffles! Taking down Christmas decorations! Getting the car washed! LIFE!

It occurs to me that some people may not have spouses like this. Maybe Aaron doesn't have a spouse like this. Maybe sometimes I'm a little too bored. A little too whiny, a little too quiet, a little too ho-hum in proportion to the amazing go-round we're getting. I mean, we're kind of on the pretty princess train, you know? House to live in, nice bed, good jobs, Chipotle on Demand, two families who think we're the bees knees, finances that allow us to visit said families, etc.

Aaron gets this. Aaron knows how to have fun. Aaron IS fun. And I'm lucky.

Go make some waffles!