Archive | April, 2012

EdiTORIal

24 Apr

If you don’t know who Tori Spelling is, please tell me you’ve been living under a rock somewhere, or you were raised by wolves and they wouldn’t let you watch TV. Tori Spelling is the only daughter of television’s most famous and well known producer, the late Aaron Spelling. She was first seen on TV as the loveable and quirky Donna Martin on Beverly Hills 90210. If you grew up in the 80’s and 90’s like I did, then we should be up to speed. Since then she’s become a regular made-for-tv-movie star, and has appeared in her own hit reality series, Tori and Dean, Inn Love, and Tori and Dean, Home Sweet Hollywood. She has written several books, all of which I’ve read, except for the latest, CelebraTori. She is a huge advocate for the gay community, and is working on her 4th child as we speak. If you don’t know her, then you probably don’t love her. If you do know her, how could you help but love her? This is the time of the year now where I will start to convince you to love all the people I love. First Lucy, now Tori!

Tori Spelling has definitely come full circle for me. At first glance, she was annoying, maybe seemed a little spoiled, or at least that’s the impression I got. Through no fault of her own, I might add. I went to one of those high school where if you didn’t drive a BMW or Lexus or Mercedes, you were a nobody. I didn’t drive a car at all. Hence, nobody. I grew up thinking all rich kids were the same, and Tori exuded rich to me. After all, if my dad were the infamous Aaron Spelling, creator of, well, just about every hit show since the 70’s, I’d dress the part too. I think it was about 2 or 3 years ago when I stumbled upon a tabloid article, saying how Tori Spelling and new husband, Dean McDermott were going to be starting a B & B. I just knew I had to see this for myself. Luckily, Oxygen was going to be airing the spectacle, and I was tuned in. I expected her to be the girl I went to high school with; bad with money, great with credit cards. Instead, she still wound up being bad with money, but loveable and funny to watch. She laughed at herself when she fell on her face. She had way too many animals, and did a great pregnancy waddle. She was then pregnant with baby numero uno, Liam. She made all the wrong choices, but let the whole world watch her do it. There’s something about someone who makes mistakes, but then laughs them off, as if to say, ‘Eh, at least I tried’. And tried she did. I wouldn’t call it an epic failure. I’ve thought of a million things I wanted to do, and never even attempted. I had to give her credit there.

A year passed before I revisited their new show, Home Sweet Hollywood. Now, two kids in the saddle and a third on the way, we followed them through their busy lives, and through the public spectacle that is living in Hollywood. Now, also, several businesses deep, Tori was expecting baby number three, but you would’ve thought nothing had changed. She was still as hard, if not harder, working than before, never slowing down. There is nothing that motivates me more than watching this woman work herself to death. I think this has to be the number one thing I admire about her. Her drive. Her ambition. Her motivation to find anything and everything she can do to make money for her family, but never give up spending time with them. She says in her second book, the reason they keep doing the reality show is not because they like putting everything out there to be watched and criticized, but because, simply, it gives them an income to spend time together and be a family more often than not. They take their kids everywhere, and embarrassment or not, they keep plugging along. She also comments on how most of the time she has full-time, live-in help. She gives props to the moms who do this everyday on their own, without help, and admits without the help of Patsy, their baby nurse, or other nannies she’s had in the past, she couldn’t imagine how she would survive. Humble, and honest. Two qualities I happen to like in a person.

Another reason for my Tori Lovefest, is her obsession with vintage and antiques. She recently took a friend shopping for an outfit while the friend was pregnant. She said the reason you shop vintage, is because it’s cheaper, it’s better quality, and it’s always in style. I love that she finds ways to be thrifty, even in Hollywood, but is always fashionable. She has a voice and a brand that people listen to, and instead of sporting the latest Prada bag around town, she’s treasure hunting for vintage finds, and scouring Round Top in an effort to find antiques for her LA store. She’s down in the trenches, getting her hands dirty. She’s mentioned in several of her books, that all she ever wanted to be was “normal”. She wasn’t sure what that was, but she’d seen what she thought it was on TV. She wanted to live in a neighborhood where your neighbors come over and borrow a cup of sugar. She wanted to her kids to be able to ride their bikes on the sidewalks where other kids played. She wanted a smaller house, where her family could huddle together on the couch to watch a movie. Having grown up the way she did, of course I could see how the grass looks greener. But again, growing up as she did, she now realizes all that is really a possibility. She is after all Tori Spelling, and that will never change.

I can’t help but love Tori for so many reasons. I admire her desire to have as many kids as her and Dean can, and the little ways she seeks out normalcy for her family. I admire her drive and ambition to work work work for everything she has. I love her style, and her obsession with vintage that could only match that of Kalen’s. I can’t help but watch her weekly on her reality show to see what new adventure she takes her husband on, and how her husband lovingly goes along with each and every crazy idea she presents. After all, that’s real love right there. Taking the risks your wife wants to take in order to make her happy, right? Well, maybe we could all learn a little something from them. Even if it only is to appreciate the little things, and always be fashionable.

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I Love Lucy…and so should You!

17 Apr

There were very few people that made my grandpa laugh from the bottom of his stomach, so hard that it would send him into acoughing frenzy. John Candy was one of them for sure. But I’m pretty sure his favorite, and it wasn’t just because she was funny, was Lucille Ball. See, Pop had been in the army in the 40’s, right around the same time Miss Ball was a Pin-Up girl in the Army’s weeklies. She was an unconventional beauty, but lets face it, isn’t that the best kind? There’s nobody who can wear that shade of red better than her, and here is why I will ALWAYS Love Lucy…

Lucille Ball was born August 6, 1911. Even 100 years after her birth, people still gather in her honor as look-alikes to celebrate the awesomeness that was Lucy. I knew my husband was the perfect man for me when I came home one day to find him watching old reruns of I Love Lucy on our television at home. I have the fondest memories of sitting across the room from my grandpa, or nudging his elbow to sit on the arm rest of his recliner, and laughing with him while watching Lucy get herself into something else. Some people say the best part of that show was “Ricky” always misinterpreting or mispronouncing some word of the English language. Sure, that hand you a few giggles, but nothing was better than watching Lucy get herself in and out of each predicament, usually going to the good ole woman’s trick of crying incessantly in order to gain sympathy. I have to wonder, did women think that worked before she did it?

While my memories of Lucy all stem from reruns of I Love Lucy, some people remember her vibrant movie career, or her days as a model. I use the term “vibrant” very loosely here, as she was recognizably know as “Queen of the B’s”, because she started in so many “B movies”. Lots of people have made successful careers out of “B movies”. Lucy may have been one of the first. She, like one of my other favorite “B Movie” actresses, Tori Spelling, was maybe not the most wildly successful actress of her time, but she is one that is still relevant to this day, and even more memorable. Sure, she was no Garbo, but she had a quality that made everyone smile when they saw her. Personality is a big part of being admired, and being thought of as beautiful. While you couldn’t necessarily call her a fashion icon, I do believe her style that was portrayed through her TV series resonates even today with the younger generation. Who doesn’t love a good day dress, head scarf, and peep toes! She made being a house wife look chic.

She was highly influential for her time, and quite controversial too. When she married Cuban band leader, Desi Arnaz, she was six years his senior. She was also sited as being part of the Communist party, although Desi refuted this, saying ‘The only thing red about Lucy is her hair, and even that’s not real’. Yes, ladies and gentleman, Lucy was actually a BLONDE.

As if any of that wasn’t enough, she also divorced, quite publicly, in 1960. This was not something many people did during this time period, but for her, she knew it was right. Desi and Lucy’s relationship had turned tumultuous, with the great success of Desilu came great stress, which turned into a not so great drinking problem for Desi. It has been said that during one of their spats, Lucy put a gun to Desi’s head and pulled the trigger. When only a flame came out, he stepped up to the gun and lit his cigar. A once desperate to be together couple had taken a turn for the worse, and Lucy knew it was better for them to be apart than stay together. A brave woman she had to be to divorce a man in the sixties. No matter how disastrous their relationship had turned out, they still spoke very fondly of each other, and remained friends until Desi passed away in 1986. Maybe Lucy wanted to teach the women of her time a lesson here. Get out while you can still respect one another for your children.

I Love Lucy for so many reasons. I love that she was a bottle redhead. I mean, lets be honest, is there really any other kind. I also love that though she was a blonde, she still chose the route of something different, perhaps risky, and definitely unique. Her hair color was just the precedent for the way she lived her life. They say blondes have more fun. I’d have to disagree. Lucy lived her life to the fullest, took her success to a new peak, and made everyone fall in love with her along the way. She was the first reality TV star, in cooperating her life with Desi into a show that gave them a way to spend more time together, and share her life with the world. She was and is and always will be an icon for Hollywood success, an inspiration for women in a “man’s world”, and a legend of class and beauty that was one of a kind. There’s so many reason why I Love Lucy. And I think you’re crazy if you don’t!

Don’t Tell Mom…I may be a Hipster.

9 Apr

My best friend called me a Hipster a few weeks ago. It has obviously had a resounding affect on me, as I’m blogging about it weeks later. Her definition of a Hipster was someone who didn’t like something every one else liked. She said it was because I shop at resale, vintage, and thrift stores. I frequent flea markets, and quite recently Canton, which I’m currently obsessed over now. Thank you East Texas. And because I liked Adele WAY before anyone else did, and now that the whole world is Adele obsessed, I couldn’t care less. So this got me thinking…what is a Hipster, really? If I went by my best friend’s definition, and I try not most days, I’d have to say with shame that I am a Hipster. But before dive into self loathing and start wearing a fanny pack to be “ironic” let me research this term “Hipster” just a little more.

If Aline’s definition of Hipster is correct, then my mother might’ve been the first one. Dare I say I’ve turned into my mother…? Nope, I will not admit this as of yet. According to my good friend, Google, a Hipster is someone who follows the latest trends and fashions. Well, that makes almost every girl in the free world one then. However, according to my distant cousin, Urban Dictionary:

“Hipsters are a subculture of men and women typically in their 20’s and 30’s that value independent thinking, counter culture, progressive politics, an appreciation of art and indie- rock, creativity, intelligence, and witty banter.”

Oh dear God, it is not looking good for me right now, and I know many of you are starting to feel the same. Or at least I hope you are. However I have to say, perhaps this all has to do with the way I was raised. I thought that it was important to have independent thought, not go-with-the-flow, and appreciate intelligence and creativity. I certain appreciate intelligence in my friends, otherwise, the conversation is quite dull. Urban Dictionary goes on to say that while “Hipsterism is really a state of mind, it is also often intertwined with distinct fashion sensibilities. Hipsters reject the culturally ignorant attitudes of mainstream consumers, and are often seen wearing vintage and thrift store inspired fashions, tight fitting jeans, old school sneakers…” From this I have to conclude that while Hipsters do not like to look like every one else, they all dress alike…? The article later concludes that they all dress in a fashion depicted in that of Urban Outfitters and American Apparel ads. They also reject the stereotypical male/female archetypes that society portrays as “good-looking”. And while stores like Old Navy, The Gap, and American Eagle now carry “worn-style” jeans, they are simply following a path that Hipsters have carved out before them from wearing thrift store clothing that is worn that way, because it was worn that way.

I have to wonder now, what will the Hipsters of tomorrow be wearing, since everyone is going to start wearing what Hipsters wear? Are the outfits going to become more and more outrageous as time goes on, simply to avoid finding a look-alike crossing their path? As a woman, there is truly nothing worse in this world, or at least to me, as walking down the street to my favorite restaurant, glowing about how awesome I look in my new ensemble and coming upon another girl wearing the same thing. Thank you Forever 21 for making this happen more often than not. Even as most recently we’ve had girls come in the store looking for vintage prom dresses. After all, it would be the end all be all if a girl showed up to your prom in YOUR dress.

So it looks like the world is going the way of the Hipster after all. I don’t think this is such a bad thing. I may have to say that as I may unwillingly admit I do fall under this category sometimes. When I am not taking my kid to school early in the morning, not going grocery shopping, and not going to or from the gym, I tend to dress myself according to my own standards that may not match up with everyone elses’. A girl likes to look her best, and not like someone else’s best. Good luck to all you fellow Hipsters out there! I’m sorry to bring such news to you on this rainy Monday. Take pride in who you are, and please don’t forget to appreciate intelligence, Hipster or not!