Monthly Archives: July 2009

Right on, Bateman

“Do you want to continue being great at being in your twenties, or do you want to step up and graduate into adulthood?”

Hmmm – “great at being in your twenties.” A well-stated synopsis of an epidemic that seems to be sweeping men across the nation.

More on how this all-grown-up child star finally stepped into manhood (and fatherhood – look at his darling daughter!!) is in the August issue of Details.


Yes, it is 150% OK

And also my life motto.

(Reblogged from I Suwannee. Golly, I love that Jamie Meares.)


More “for the love of”…PAPER

I am a big stationery snob. In particular, I’ve been meaning to blog about my love for Egg Press cards – but Village Mews beat me to it! So this is reblogged for your viewing pleasure – and I’ll let Chelsea take the credit. 🙂

P.S. You can also find Egg Press cards at various shops on Ballard Ave.  – Lucca is a personal fave.


Oh, for the love of goats

I am not kidding when I say I love, love, LOVE goats. Nothing makes me giggle more than their sweet faces and silly behavior. When I came across these photos on Etsy – by the incredible photographer, Sharon Montrose – I was hooked. All three are getting framed for display in the new joint.

Conversation starter? You betcha.




Salad days

101 simple salads from the NYT. Appropriate recession food that’s a) good for you and b) puts farmer’s market lusciousness to good use.

Also beats the hell outta ramen.


Cinderella will go stag to the ball, thanks

An excerpt of this story ran on Yahoo! Shine. Names have been changed to cover my ass.

I said I would never do it. Never would I sink so low. Never would I throw myself into the tureen of desperation bouillabaisse, lie prone on the Singles Smorgasbord, and dish myself up for a taste – all in the pedestrian hope of living happily ever after with my personal Prince Charming.

Never, never would I try online dating.

But in the four years since my divorce, I’ve been a drunk driver on the Singleton Highway, making wrong turns and veering off course en route to Spinsterville. Having subscribed to a supposedly infallible strategy – devised through grilling countless people about how they’d met their true love – I’ve dated people I met while pursuing my passions, at my job, and through trusted friends. But this has only brought me into contact with the emotionally unavailable, socially retarded, and potentially gay. (Sometimes all three.) After four consecutive head-on collisions, it dawned on me that I was embodying the definition of insanity: pursuing the same course of action over and over, and expecting different results.

So I surrendered and said “Enchanté” to eHarmony and its “29 Dimensions of Compatibility.” The mission: One month. Sixty bucks. Two dates.

Of the roughly 200 matches I received over 30 days, I communicated with five. Lest I appear impossibly picky, I should note that, after two weeks, most of my matches were designated “flexible” – meaning, “Sorry, we’ve run out of people who are even remotely compatible with you. But perhaps you’d like to meet this gentleman anyway. He enjoys pizza, HBO, Miller Light, and setting his farts on fire.* True love awaits!”

Despite the torching tooters, I did achieve my two-date minimum. My first was with Jack – a smoking hot outdoorsy type who was tight with his family and had a bright, inviting smile; and my second with Dan – like me, a business owner and improvisational comic actor, who’d written an insightful and engaging profile and totally fit the bill in terms of the “boyish cute” type I’m typically drawn to.

I had a fantastic date with Jack: good conversation, polite, no surprises. But as cool – and HOT – as he was, it was clear neither of us was feeling it. Three days later, I met Dan, who organized an ideal first date – a Saturday afternoon stroll around Seattle’s Green Lake, equivalent to roughly 50 minutes of getting-to-know-you conversation and plenty of nearby options for a post-walk dine or drink.

One of my goals in succumbing to online dating was to simply get better at first dates – for instance, ask lots of questions and let the man do most of the talking. But after about a mile, I realized Dan had been carrying on a conversation almost entirely solo, even answering some of his own questions and making assumptions aloud about me (“You know us comedy people, Nicole – always looking for validation!”). He gave me unsolicited (and unnecessary) business advice, continually jabbed my ribs with his elbow (“Oh sorry, I’m hyperkinetic!”), and launched into a number of accents and impersonations – including a Long Island dialect he insisted I must have mastered while performing improv in New York. I finally tossed a few phrases out there just to get him to shut the F up and he responded with, “I knew it! I knew it!” like we were fourth graders on the playground and I’d just admitted to saucing my pants during the Pull My Finger contest. And then I caught Dan looking pointedly in the direction of two women stripping down for a run.

“Hey Nicole!” Dan shouted, elbowing me yet again. “Wouldn’t it be funny if that woman took off her shirt and starting running and realized she’d forgotten her sports bra and was, like, flopping around in the wind, while all the guys were staring at her?”

“Uh, somehow I don’t think that would happen,” I replied, wondering if this 45-year-old man was reprising Tom Hanks’ role in a remake of Big and if so, when someone was going to yell “Cut!” and let me in on the joke.

Two miles and endless Danprattle later, I felt tremendous relief as we approached the parking lot. As I prepared to wish him well, Dan asked if I’d like to have lunch with him. Both intense hunger – and apparently temporary insanity – made me agree.

“Great! I’m just going to change into jeans,” Dan noted, heading toward his SUV.

“All right – I’ll grab my bag,” I said, making my way to my car.

“Or you could…come with me,” Dan suggested.

“I’m sorry?” I asked, utterly confused.

“Well…I have tinted windows.”

“Excuse me?”

“You know – I mean, it’s private.”

I know. I should have bid him adieu, driven home, and joined the Witness Protection Program. But I was so stunned by this turn of conversation, I could only muster, “That’s OK. I’m just going to get my bag.”

Dan shrugged and ducked into his car. Where he spent 10 minutes changing into his jeans. When he finally emerged, it took every ounce of restraint to keep from asking if he needed a tissue.

The restaurant of his choosing was on the opposite side of the lake so I got – ta da! – another mile and a half of diarrhea chatter with this mongrel. Once seated at our table, I scanned the menu, only to have him snatch it from my hands and declare that we’d be ordering the roasted vegetable salad. And sharing it. So not only did I have no say in my lunch, I was banned from enjoying my own entrée.

As we awaited the salad’s arrival, Dan started firing off questions. While staring intently at my breasts.

“So are you a healthy eater?”

“Yes, I would say so. That doesn’t mean I don’t indulge from time to time, but I believe in moderation.”

“Mm hm. Mm hm,” he said to my sternum. “So you’re not, like, ordering McDonald’s cheeseburgers?”

“If I want a McDonald’s cheeseburger, I’ll have a McDonald’s cheeseburger,” I sniffed.

“Mm hm. Mm hm. So you know how to cook?”

“Yes. I was married, you know – cooking kind of goes with the territory.”

“Mm hm. Mm hm. How long were you married?”

“Seven years.”

“Seven years – WHOA! How long were you together before you got married?”

“Eight years.”

“Eight years?! And you were married for seven years?!” Dan quickly did the math. “So you were with someone for 15 years???”


“So…what was wrong with him?”

“Excuse me?”

“Well something must have been wrong with him. Why else would you divorce him?”

Although I really wanted to say it was none of his business and that break-ups are never one-sided, I borrowed one of my favorite Carrie Bradshaw-isms, which she uses in response to the Vogue editor inquiring about her break-up with Aidan.

“He went there,” I said, pointing in one direction. And then, pointing in the other, “I went there.”

Our salad arrived and, as Dan fished for compliments about its fabulousness, he mentioned how he regularly patronized the restaurant for this dish. In fact, he came here often – he’d even been there that very morning for breakfast with his friend Steve.

“You came to the same restaurant for two meals in a row?” I asked.

He grinned proudly. “Yep.”

I refrained from comment as we finished our meal and he settled the bill. On the way back, we passed a sparkling new Aston Martin parked in front of a Starbucks. Dan wasted no time in announcing that it was his friend’s car and surely he must be inside grabbing a latte – and then paraded me through the ginormous Starbucks in search of his clearly-mucho-wealthy, nowhere-to-be-found, and P.S.-I-am-so-not-impressed-anyway friend. Catching a glimpse of the heavy gray clouds outside, I suggested we head back to our cars before the sky opened up. As I pondered joining a convent and dedicating my life to God, bread-baking, and gardening, Dan piped up enthusiastically.

“Hey Nicole! Wouldn’t it be funny if it started to rain really hard, and we had to hide in that barn over there, and your shirt was totally soaked and you were like, ‘Oh my God, I’m so embarrassed – it’s like a wet T-shirt contest!’”

And suddenly I understood that I wasn’t in this to find Prince Charming. I wasn’t in this to become more confident about dating. I was in this because it helped me accept that I was just fine on my own. I thanked Dan for lunch and furiously pressed the “unlock” button on my car’s remote as I approached the beloved chariot that would take me away from the crazy prince, back to my castle, where I could live happily ever after….


*No joke. Sans the fart festivities, several guys listed these items in their “5 Things I Can’t Live Without.”

I bow at the altar of Helen Fisher

This woman rocks my universe. Her work is so relevant, it hurts. In this TED talk, she discusses how love is an addiction; the differences between the male and female brain; the effect of women in the workforce on sex, romance, and family life; even how anti-depressants are damaging relationships.

For everyone befuddled and frustrated with modern love, dating, and marriage, have a watch and a listen. Take note of her words: “A world without love is a deadly place.”

Then exhale.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “I bow at the altar of Helen Fisher“, posted with vodpod

This just in: Amazon buys Zappos


Glad to hear they will still run as a separate entity though. Hope they stay the course.

FYI – I am a MONSTER Zappos fan. I cannot sing their praises enough – free shipping, free returns, almost always getting upgraded to next-day shipping, up to a year to return a purchase (granted, you can’t have used/worn it). But here’s the awesome thing – I recently bought a pair of Frye sandals (yeah, I know they’re totally rad – you can’t know how many compliments I get on these suckers) and the ankle strap snapped in two after just three wearings. I asked Zappos if I could exchange them for a new pair – even though it’s not their policy – since clearly this was a “lemon shoe.” They responded within just a few hours and said it was no prob and P.S. – I was being upgraded to VIP status for being such a fabulous customer. I wrote back, professing my long-standing bordering-on-orgy love for them and asked them to pass my compliments onto CEO Tony Hsieh for “totally getting it” when it comes to business strategy and customer service.

And one more reason to love Tony: he posted a Q&A about the acquisition on the Zappos blog. One question was, “Will Zappos employees get an Amazon discount?” His response:

“No, because we are planning on continuing to run Zappos as a separate company with our own culture and core values. And we’re not going to be giving the Zappos discount to Amazon employees either, unless they bake us cookies and deliver them in person.”

Excuse me, I need them as a client. PRONTO. If I’d developed this for ANY of my clients (and yes, this is the kind of hoo-ha I write for a living – but as Tony’s letter shows…when employee comm is done right, it’s unbelievably awesome), they would have slashed it for inappropriateness. In fact, I wouldn’t even dare try, which is the horrifically sad creative un-reality of my current occupational affairs.

Moral of the story: Generation X rocks corporate America. I always knew we would. Everyone else can suck it.

Words I’m sick of hearing

1) Crazy.

2) Busy.

Especially in tandem. I’m particularly sick of hearing myself say these words, as well as the following when others say them:

1) “No worries.”

2) “I understand.”lonelyamerican

Because newsflash: Everyone is “crazy busy” and it’s not a valid excuse for shitting on/ignoring people. Busyness is not a virtue, it’s a sickness that’s cutting us off from developing strong connections with others and leading truly productive, efficient lives. Don’t believe me? Read this book.

Best SNL ad parody of all time

This originally aired about 10 years ago. Poop humor will never die.