Tuesday, November 28, 2006

How I spent my Thanksgiving vacation

You may have noticed (or NOT) that I have been suspiciously quiet these last five days on the blogosphere.

Perhaps you have been enjoying my absence :)

But, guess what...I'm baaaack!

I left for the east coast last Friday, returning to L.A. today. I surprised my brother and sister-in-law for her 5oth birthday. They had no idea I was coming. Even my mother, who left five days earlier from L.A., had no idea I was coming. Only my, niece, who I recruited as my chauffeur, was privvy to this great caper of mine.

I haven't seen my big brother for 2 years...my sis-in-law for 3 1/2.

When I learned they were having a birthday party, I immediately decided that I wouldn't be attending. Afterall, it was Thanksgiving weekend, the busiest travel weekend of the year.

But about a week prior, something inside of me clicked. I remember hearing stories throughout my childhood, about people who found the money and time to attend funerals across the country, but wouldn't go while the person was alive. I didn't want to end up being one of those people. I wanted to be there with them to celebrate, and not wait until tragedy struck.

I really wanted to be there.

So, I figured out a way to go and not miss Thanksgiving with my husband and kids. And...to avoid the nightmare of travelling.

My thought was, that by Friday, everyone would have reached their destination for Thanksgiving, so the travel would be light. I would return Tuesday, after everyone had made there way home from the holiday weekend.

And boy was I right. The plane was only 85% full on Friday, allowing me to have a full row of seats to myself! And today...zipped right through security, little crowds, and our flight was smooth sailing.

I had a wonderful weekend. I am so grateful for the relationship I have with my brother and sister-in-law, nieces and nephew...even living 3000 miles away from eachother.

I even played a new game...Scattegories...almost as much fun as eating icecream.

I did the right thing this weekend. I filled myself with a wonderful, loving, Thanksgiving dinner with my husband, children and extended family. And then spent the weekend filling myself with memories and love.

So that's why I've been missing from the blogosphere the last five days.

...just in case you were wondering.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

The sentence finisher

One of my favorite t.v. shows of all time was Seinfeld.

He managed to take the mundane moments of life and turn them into an hysterical 1/2 hour show that we couldn't wait to view every Thursday night for years.

One of the watermarks of a Seinfeld episode, was his ability to make an everyday behavior bigger than life.

One episode that clearly stands out is that of the "close talker", played by actor Judge Reinhold.
(pictured above in Fast Times at Ridgemont High)

You know this person... the one that invades your space, your personal invisible boundary, moving right smack into your face while talking to you.

The other day, my husband noticed something about a friend of ours, that I had not been aware of.

He finishes your sentences...he's a sentence finisher!

I couldn't help but laugh hysterically, thinking, this is one episode Seinfeld missed!

This is the person who, while you're talking, is busy thinking up the best ending to your sentences or sometimes, your entire story. Before you can spit the words out of your mouth...they have already judged and executed the remainder of your story.

Now, if you're a brand new couple, this behavior is quite adorable. "Oh, don't you just love Susie and Joe together...they're so in tune with one another that they finish eachother's sentences".
"How romantic, how cute, how adorable, how endearing...they complete eachother".

Of course, cut to that same couple 20 years later, and Susie is reaming Joe for constantly cutting her off, never letting her finish a sentence, or get a word in edge-wise, and for doubting that she has a valuable thought in her head.

Joe is screaming at Susie for being a blustering loud mouthed bitch, who never shuts up unless she has a bowl of icecream in front of her.

(no, no, despite what you may be thinking, I'm not talking about me and Mr. Cruisin...he knows to keep his mouth shut when I'm talking).

Now, if you're not a couple, and just two people talking...it's a little more difficult to lambast the person for cutting you off. I mean, afterall, that lambasting should really be reserved for those closest to us...wives, husbands, children, parents...you know, the people we love and care about the most.

Never waist a good reaming on someone you don't really care about intimately and passionately.

So what to do when confronted with this kind of person? I say, why not have fun with it.

And here's how...

See how many sentences or stories you can start, and have that person finish. You know, kind of like mad libs or a sentence completion game. Become a sentence-finisher enabler!

Keep score in your head. How many sentences were they able to complete? How many entire stories of yours did they already know the ending to?

And why not just keep increasing the stakes as you go along...start telling about your bathroom habits; relay a story about your sexual escapades with your husband...

and see where the sentence finisher takes you!

Yahoo...what fun!

So, the next time you find a sentence finisher's behavior annoying, it's time to look in the mirror, girlfriend (sorry if you're a guy...what's the guy equivalent to girlfriend?) and ask yourself...

How have I let this person down? How have I not enabled them in becoming the most proficient sentence-finisher they could be?

Perhaps you have been unwilling to share, openly and honestly. What's a little sexual escapades story among friends...

And bathroom habits? ...why, crap, I've already shared the intimate details of my colonoscopy with you...

Perhaps we can do a "sentence finishing" test run right here...go ahead, fill in the blanks.

Okay, here goes...

last night Mr. Cruisin and I.........

Sunday, November 19, 2006

another day

How observant are you?


C'mon, look around...notice anything different? Look up...keep going...your getting warmer...yep...that's it...my ramblings are now from a "51" year old wife and mom.

Yesterday, I turned another page in the book of Cruisin-mom.


Funny, it smarts just a little more than 50. Don't get me wrong...I'm not unhappy to be here. In fact, I love my 50's. It's just so damned weird to say...

"I'm in my 50's".

How can it be? "And yet, everything around me and about me, tells me I am in my 50's:

I flash.
I have grey hair (well, under the brown dye).
People in their 40's call me "ma'am".
The kid at the movie theatre offers me a senior ticket.
I don't sleep at night.
I remember with great clarity, the Beatles visit to Ed Sullivan.
I voted just a "little" Republican (but mostly Democrat) in the last election. (HORRORS)
I prefer to go out to dinner at 5:00 rather than 8:00.
People are talking to me about their bowel movements.

It all points to the "50's".

But it's okay, because I'm not alone. The planet is lousy with baby boomers. And we happened to see one of them last night doing a one-woman show.

Carrie Fisher (princess Leia), just turned 50. She is performing a brilliant one woman show at the Geffen theatre in Westwood, CA. called Wishful Drinking.

We arrived at the theatre about 45 minutes before show time, and thank goodness we did. What a people watching lalapalooza it was. We even saw Carrie Fisher enter the theatre right through the front doors, as they have no artist entrance at the Geffen.

Rob Reiner (Meathead to those of you old enough to remember All in the Family), was in the lobby waiting too...he did, afterall, direct Carrie in my favorite movie When Harry Met Sally.

Her show covered her life, from her birth into Hollywood royalty (Debbie Reynold's and Eddie Fisher...or as she put it for the younger people..."the Brad and Jen of this era, with Angelina Jolie being their Elizabeth Taylor")...through her pivotal role in Star Wars, her marriage to Paul Simon, her boughts with drug abuse, rehab, mental illness, the gay father of her child...right on up to the present.

She was funny, engaging, heartwarming, and who knew she could belt out a tune?

And...Mr. Cruisin managed to once again...LISTEN!

I mentioned that I'd love a digital camera for my bday, and what did he do? He surprised me with the Canon powershot and a printer to boot!

Now, although this camera seems to have every possible function known to man...
don't expect any pics of me.

For some odd reason, they left off the "make the 51 year old broad look 25 again" function...so...


Thursday, November 09, 2006

Take me home

Curtis, the take home chef
inspired by Neil

On my third date with Mr. Cruisin', he brought me back to his house and cooked me a meal.

Yes, it worked...I was duly impressed, and knew that this was the man I had to marry. Let's not forget this is the same man who had decorated his livingroom with splashes of mauve (oh relax, it was the '80's you know).

We dipped cubes of sourdough bread into a lovely fondue, as we gazed into eachother's eyes.
We drank wine, and laughed, and talked...all the while I was thinking...Yep, I could do this the rest of my life.

Well I fell for it, hook, line, and cheese. Months would go by before I would wake up and notice that this guy hadn't cooked another meal for me.

Now don't get me wrong...he took me places and bought me plenty of meals...but the actual cooking of one? ... uh, uh...no where in sight.

Once we married he, of course, cooked meals here and there...but few and far between. Now, I will say that no one makes a turkey sandwich like my husband. And he does have a rare talent of turning a watermelon into a hippopotamus.

But just last month something changed all that. We happened upon a t.v. show on TLC channel called "Take Home Chef".

A chef named Curtis, picks up babes (well sometimes men, but mostly hot babes) in one of the fancy markets in L.A. (Gelson's or Whole Foods). He helps the woman pick out ingredients for someone's favorite meal...a husband, friend, children, roomate...and together they go back to this person's home to cook a meal.

The idea is that whoever the meal is being cooked for, will come home to this wonderful surprise of this strange chef and an entire camera crew in their home.

Now, Curtis, a hunky, friendly Australian, has a wonderful way of cooking...you know...a little of this, and a little of that...but everything must have olive oil in it.

While cooking the meal, he is completely flirting with the hot babe, but all the while we, the viewers, are learning all about how to cook this fabulous meal.

Well...Mr. Cruisin' is completely enthralled with Curtis. I'm not sure if it's Curtis' hunkiness, or the Australian accent...but Mr. Cruisin' can't wait for this show to come on.

Am I worried about this unusual attraction to Curtis? Hell no.

And here's why:

Every time Curtis cooks...Mr. Cruisin' goes rushing to the market and cooks up the same thing!

Tell me this isn't like striking gold. My husband has been inspired to cook, all because of one hunky Australian.

Several times a week I come home to the smell of something incredible wafting through my home.

And there's Mr. Cruisin' practically dancing around the kitchen...shaking salt and pepper and olive oil anywhere he can. It's the most excited and animated I've seen the guy, since thinking he could be the next American Idol.

Thanks to Curtis...my husband has become a chef extraordinaire.

So girls, the lesson here is to never give up hope...just when you think that after 21 years you may never get more than a turkey sandwich...something happens to turn your world, or should I say kitchen, upside down.

Although, don't tell Mr. Cruisin'...but everytime I go to the market, I get all dolled up, waiting for Curtis to come find me...


I am a hot almost 51 year old babe.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Area 51

I can't believe it.

I'm eating my ice cream and watching Desperate Housewives, and on comes a commercial for Christmas.

And then another.


Is it my imagination, or does the whole advertising thing get started earlier and earlier every year?

I just finished stuffing all of the left over Halloween candy down my throat...the Thanksgiving turkey hasn't even been captured, and already the Christmas ads are here.

In these commercials, it's snowing.

Of course, here in L.A. it's 90 degrees.

And if I don't buy Hanuka invitations soon, the only available invitations and decorations will be for St. Patrick's day.

Do you think a Shamrock can pass for a Star of David?

In the midst of all of this...I'm turning choke, cough, choke 51 in less than two weeks.

Things are spinning and spiraling faster and faster each year.

Unfortunately this includes my body parts. And they aren't spinning and spiraling in an upward motion if you get my drift. Well, that's a post for another time.

Anyhoo, back to the holidays. And my birthday. And trying to figure out how it is that I am turning 51, which somehow feels even more surreal than turning 50.

When you turn 50, even though it's old (don't believe 'em when they tell you that 50 is the new 30), people make a big deal out of it. After all, it's a milestone right?

But 51, well...let's just say everyone "fuh-gets" about it.

Now, not only are you old...but no one really cares.

So this year I took the bull by the horns and decided I would go see my look-a-like in a one woman show the night of my birthday. I'm draggin' Mr. Cruisin along.

Poor guy, never in his life did he dream he'd be sleeping with a 51 year old broad.

But that's how life goes...one minute your a hot 25 year old babe...the next minute you're hot alright, but it comes in flashes.

So, while scarfing up the rest of the Halloween candy, and preparing to capture my Turkey, I will try to enjoy these next two weeks and bask in the glory of being a 50 year old.