Monday, December 31, 2007

"At least it was in my district."

California State Senator Don Perata was carjacked yesterday in front of my old apartment building. Derrick and I were passing our old place on the way to the freeway, when we spotted a police car sitting in the middle of the lane with its lights on, an older man with an Oakland A's jacket leaning in the window and speaking to the driver. When we got home, news about the carjacking was on TV. Turns out Perata's car was targeted for its fancy 22-inch rims. Which begs the question: what was Don Perata doing with 22-inch rims? Then I Googled his car, a Dodge Charger, and was further amazed:

It was also revealed that Perata usually carries a (legally) concealed weapon because of past threats on his life, but on this occasion, he wasn't packing. Wow, this man really does live and breathe Oakland. But in a good way? A bad way? I'm not really sure.

Friday, December 21, 2007

I've never been less convinced to buy an overpriced designer good.

Today I was reading the December issue of Allure (yeah, I know) and there was an article about materialism by style writer Amy Larocca, in which the question was raised “Is materialism bad?” and then answered poorly. Where to begin. Here, Ms. Larocca describes a comment made to her by the disapproving mother of an ex-boyfriend:
“’I knew you were a writer,’ she told me on our first meeting. ‘but I didn’t know you wrote about hair clips.’ She said ‘hair clips’ in a tone that I usually reserve for words like ‘genocide.’”
Um, you say “genocide” with disdain? Your tone of voice conveys that you think “genocide” is frivolous? Confusing! She is not winning me over with her thinking so far, and we haven’t even gotten into WHY she thinks people call chicks with $5000 handbags materialists. First up: she gets all defensive! She says people who call other people materialists are just haters:
“It’s easier to insult what you covet than to confront covetous feelings.”
It's also easier to get defensive when people insult you for over-spending than it is to confront your over-spending.

Next up, shopping is in our chromosomes! “…one of the treats of being female is the enjoyment we get from a gorgeous dress, an elegant pair of shoes….” We should all just give in to genetics. Like the Nepalese women Larocca met abroad! They bond over sari-shopping! This kind of feels like a feeble attempt at saying, well the Buddhists shop a lot and they're all, like, enlightened, so I should just go ahead and buy those shoes.

But the kicker is when Ms. Larocca tries to convince you that shopping is good for you. Science proves it!
“Two leading brain researchers at Johns Hopkins have concluded that shopping requires a trifecta of healthy behaviors—physical activity, decision-making, and a positive self-image—it might actually help you live longer.”
You know what else requires physical activity and decision-making? Um, everything, basically. Like choosing between Cuervo and whiskey, then dancing on a bar table with your skirt over your head. Don't think anyone would confuse that with healthy behavior. And you know what doesn’t require a positive self-image? Shopping! I’ve totally bought “fat jeans” when I was feeling bloated and ugly.

And the crowning gem of Ms. Larocca’s argument: Without fashion, people might run your ass over!
“…psychologists at the University of Leicester, in England, claim that being well-dressed can protect you from being hit by a car. (Drivers, apparently, are more likely to stop for you in a crosswalk if you’re looking sharp.)”
“Is that Gucci?…no wait, it’s Forever 21! Gun it!” Seriously, if anything, this is an argument for not going around looking like crap, which you can do without spending a fortune.

Anyway, I’ve exhausted my indignation. I’m going to go drink beer and think festive thoughts.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Braff Wars

So the other day I was talking about The Office with my co-worker, Young. I happened to mention I thought John Krasinski was cute. Which led Young to mention something about how he's on those big posters the hang in the windows at the Gap. Which led me to say "What? I walk by those every day and never noticed!" Which led him to IM me the picture. Which led me to say "I thought that was Zach Braff!" Which led him to yell "Jocelyn likes Zach Braff! Jocelyn likes Zach Braff!" Which I DON'T. In fact, I find him kinda gross. But too late. Young started doing things like this:

Then he moved on to defacing my work:

And defacing my husband:

So far, I've only managed to do this because I've been WORKING:

Also, it bears mentioning that last week he did this:

Update: To get Young back, I offered him one of his favorite foods (cranberry trail mix) marinated in Zicam (he's been taking Zicam mouth spray all week and complaining about the taste). Unfortch, the boy will eat anything. And he ate the entire bowl, even choking down the bits at the bottom that had the highest Zicam concentration. Really took the wind out of my sails.

Update #2: Young has a stomachache. Yesssss, it was worth it after all. Also, he shows no signs of a cold.

Behold the awesome power of our holiday cheer.

This is how JPMorgan Chase decided to decorate their lobby this holiday season. Sorry the photo is so bad--I was forced to take it through the window because they wouldn't let me in the building. So I wasn't able truly capture the grand scale of this thing. Seriously, I don't think I've ever seen a Christmas display this devoid of warmth. Leave it to a bunch of i-bankers to suck the humanity out of the holidays. Do children cry when they see this? Oh wait, they don't let children in. I like how the ribbon quality of the sculpture makes you feel like it could come crashing down at any moment. In fact, maybe that's the point. Maybe it pinpoints bankers who haven't made their numbers with a hidden animatronic eye and then crushes them under two tons of jingle bell.