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High Heels

Sometimes I wonder if my life would be different if I regularly wore high heels. I have never been a girly-girl but this doesn’t mean I am tomboy either. I’ve just been a little slow to learn things like plunking eyebrows, wearing perfume or putting on lipstick. The kind of things most girls start doing in their teens, I put off until my mid 20’s. You know how you always have at least one friend in the group that you want to do a “make-over” on? Well, that’s me. I’m that friend.

So although I have been taught it’s not cool for a girl to have bushy eyebrows and callused feet, nobody has been able to break me of my high-heel-fear. To be honest, it’s a serious risk if I wear them, I’ve personally done my own research and I know that have about a 30 percent chance of falling or tripping when wearing high heels and if I have to walk on a sidewalk, the percentage goes up about 20 percent.

The highest I have ever gone in a pair, is about two inches. I can’t even think about those super sexy spiky high heels, if I even look at those on the shelf I feel wobbly in the knees. You know how some people, who are afraid of heights look at a tall buildings and get nauseous, that’s how I am when I go to Macy’s women’s shoe section and spot a pair of four-inch risk factors.

Because my fear of heels is rooted in experience, it’s hard for me to let go of it. Imagine if every time you put on a certain item of clothing, you had a flashback of falling in front [...]


So I will admit I’m a flake sometimes. I’ll blame it on my ADD…I recently self-diagnosed. Last year, I made a commitment to myself and to my readers that I would stop using plastic bags and bring my own bags to the grocery store.

Dated April 22, 2010 I wrote, “I am going to use those bags and if I forget them, I either have to carry my groceries or buy another bag.”

Well, that commitment lasted for about a month or two. Then to make matters worse, I wrote at the end of that same column, “I would like to spend the next couple of columns on this same subject. I promise it will be riveting and if it’s not, at least do me a favor and toss me in the recycle bin.”

That last line is kind of clever, don’t ya think? However, I’m a columnist not a politician so my clever-cute ending doesn’t make up for the fact that twice I didn’t do what I said I was going to do.

So, first and foremost I would like to apologize to you and the environment for my lack of follow-through. I really don’t know why I can’t just remember those bags when I go in the grocery store. It’s probably the same part of my brain that forgets to charge my phone or forgets where I put my keys or my sunglasses. Unfortunately, that part of the brain doesn’t forget how good wings and pizza taste. I mean if I could forget how yummy wings and pizza tasted, instead of forget to take my re-usable bag into the store, I would look like one of those size-two women you see walking around Whole Foods in [...]

Grandpa’s Shirt

While waiting in line at the bank the other day, playing my little game of, “If I had to pick anyone in this room to date, who would it be,” a four-year-old toe-head offered me some fashion advice. Swinging from the bars, feet dragging on the floor, the little ray of sunshine looked up at me, pointed and said without introduction, “My grandpa has that shirt.” Before I had time to respond to her precious observation, the child’s red faced grandma, attempted to buff out the little “fashioniesta’s” comment by adding in her own insight. “No, no honey, grandpa doesn’t have that shirt, grandma does.

I looked down at my deposit slip and thought to myself, “wow, not only am I broke, but now I am also aware that I have the fashion sense of an old man.”

Oh and to think that I almost used the drive up teller.

Little “Sunshine Suzie’s” take on my daily décor had interrupted my decision between the skinny guy in the suit and the beefy guy in the jeans. However, I aborted my little game so that I could turn my attention to more important matters.

“Is that a tattoo on your foot?” the little pumpkin with the blue eyes asked me. “My daddy says tattoos are bad.”

Grandma, who was collecting her money at the stable, looked like she was going to pass out from embarrassment. “Yes it is,” I replied. “And my daddy thinks they are bad too.”

Seconds later, “toe-head” and I waved goodbye to each other and it was my turn to step up to the window where I would find out that this week I broke even.

As I left the bank I wondered if “pumpkin’s” dad was a [...]

Getting Lucky

The other day I hugged a guy with arms bigger than my own and I swear if I had the power to make time stop I would have. Don’t confuse this comment with desperation, I am not desperate, I am starved. Starved of affection from someone who isn’t my friend, isn’t my relative and isn’t the sweet little child of one of my friends or relatives.

I know that this is a very delicate subject to talk about and if I am not careful I could be perceived as someone who is on the verge of going to Redondo Beach to get a “special” massage. But no, that is not the case. I am just expressing what it feels like to be a single girl who doesn’t hang out at the bar scene on a regular basis and hasn’t gone on a date for what seems like years. Actually, if I were a dog it would be years.

For so long I was doing so well at not caring if I had man-arms in my life, I would pride myself on changing the oil in my car and not needing man the way other single girls seem to always have to have one. When hearing how irritated some of my friend’s were with their husbands and how stressed out they were with their kids, I counted my blessings that I didn’t have to deal with such irritations. But now all of a sudden, I find myself a little bitter that I don’t get to partake in the “my husband or my boyfriend” conversations.

Honestly, I think this new serge of neediness for man-arms started after attending a funeral last week. I was sitting in the church, sandwiched [...]

Christmas with The Huxtables

I am just coming to the end of a 10-day-east-coast trip, which, I spent with the BIL (Boy I Like) and his entire family. It would be kind of fun to write about all the mishaps or dysfunction I experienced, but there was none. His family is so normal and nice, I feel like I have been a cast member of the “Leave it to Beaver” show for the last two weeks. When the plane lands at LAX, I’m thinking my dad, who is picking us up, is going to take me back to the set of Modern Family and BIL is going to make his way over to the Huxtable house for dinner.

The trip started the day after Christmas in the Adirondacks. We pull up to a lakefront home surrounded by just enough snow to make it look like a winter wonderland. The house was filled with children in footy pajamas, the smell of homemade food and hand knit stockings hanging from the staircase.

The family photos on the wall dated back to a time when I didn’t even know that photography existed and instead of having one half-eaten game of Monopoly, they had a designated game closet that was organized by age and theme. “Wow this place is like out of a storybook,” I actually said out-loud sounding a bit like Little Orphan Annie.

Upstairs in the guestroom the beds were decorated with comforters sewn by BIL’s mom. It was explained to me that she made the comforters for BIL during his first year of college. If that wasn’t enough to make me feel insufficient for never learning how to sew a button, I was told that the family had built the newer part [...]

Mom and Jackie Birthday

There are no two people who make me feel more comfortable, more confident or more myself  than my mom and sister. Ironically, these are the only two people,  who will not, under any circumstances blow smoke up my … (As my mother has told me, “that’s your father’s job.”) If I write an article or even a post-it with typos (which happens a lot) they will tell me, if I gain weight they’ll tell me, if I date a guy who appears to know woman’s fashion more than I do and they think that’s a problem, they’ll tell me. On the flip side, no one has ever been there for me more or knows me better than these two women. Born two days and a few decades apart, my mom and sister are the strongest people I know and they are in my corner every second of every minute of every day of my life.

This last weekend the three of us went on a “staycation” to a very fancy hotel in Pasadena. Growing up we never bought our candy at the theatre but rather we would buy it at the store and bring it in. So it only seemed natural to bring our own facemask to the fancy hotel’s fancy spa. Here we were the three of us all steamed up and sauna-d out sitting around in the “contemplation room” in our robes, sipping our lemon water and eating our fruit on a toothpick each of us wearing a mud mask I had brought from home. “Wow, what type of facial is that?” a very fancy blond woman with perfect eyebrows and French manicured nails asked us.

“The VIP Mask,” I answered. “It’s not on [...]

Fortune Cookie Praise

Isn’t it good luck to get two fortunes in one cookie? So what happens if both fortunes say the same thing? Recently, after finishing my teriyaki chicken, I cracked open my plastic-wrapped-less-than-fresh-dessert, to find that I had stuck the lottery; a two-fer fortune, both reading, “You are never bitter, deceptive or petty.”

Well halleluiah, move over Jesus Christ, there is a new woman in town. According to Dragon Express Chinese Food, I’m the new ruler of the heavens. Okay, okay before I discourage all my atheist readers, let me get on with my point.

Let’s start with the first adjective. Doesn’t it take a certain amount of bitterness to promote change in the world? I’d like to think that even Mother Theresa was a little bitter.

The words deceptive and petty, those are words I’d wish not to be associated with, but honestly, I have been both petty and deceptive and not just once or twice. My father would like to believe that I am angelic (my mother knows better) and that the fortune I received is one that I should have tattooed on my forehead. Except angles don’t have tattoos they have wings. The reality is I have tattoos and neither of them have anything to do with me living a life without pettiness, deception or bitterness.

The key word on the small strip of white paper, which negates anyone from authentically taking this fortune to heart, is the word “never.” A word, which I believe in a way, is a contradiction in itself; it means everything and nothing all at the same time. I mean basically until a person is dead and the evidence shows they have stayed true to his or her statement, we can’t [...]

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    Jennifer Evans’ Insight Out: Prioritizing with a 6-month-old

Jennifer Evans’ Insight Out: Prioritizing with a 6-month-old

Once upon a time I was good about sending thank-you cards and birthday cards and “just because” cards, but now, not so much.

I feel like now, actually right now as I am writing this, I am in constant survival mode. My phone has binged 10 times in the last seven minutes and I don’t want to pick it up. I should have never sent that picture of “Baby P” in a group text, because now I will be sitting here trying to concentrate on writing this column while I know my family is going back and forth with each other discussing the picture of “Baby P” up on all fours looking as if she is going to crawl.

“Wow, she is so advanced,” my dad will write. “Are those her Christmas pajamas she is wearing?” my sister, the constant comedian will ask. “Isn’t it 2 p.m.? Why haven’t you dressed her yet?” my mom will question.

This back and forth between my family members about “Baby P” will go on into the night, my phone binging with each comment.

What is my point? I really don’t know. I started talking about cards, right? OK, let’s get back to that. When the BIL and I were dating, I gave him eight cards on his birthday, and as much as I hate to admit it, this year he didn’t even get one card. My sister-in-law, who always makes sure that a card and gift arrives for me on time for my birthday, also didn’t get a card from me (her birthday was Sunday) nor did she get a thank-you card from me for my on-time birthday gift. Same story goes for my mother-in-law, who also gave me a very [...]

Teaching Seventh Grade

The room is so quite, still and empty that it almost makes me wish they wouldn’t have left.

I find myself consumed with them, intrigued as to why some succeed and others resist the opportunity to do well. They are all capable of being well above average and although I have been told not to take it personally when they don’t meet my expectations, I do take it very personally. It’s my personal responsibility to help them see themselves the way I see them. I see them as smart, creative people who are easily distracted but willing to listen if need be. They are motivated by rewards. It’s up to me to find a fitting reward and when I have done so, it is less likely I’ll have to go in search of a consequence.

I see them as people who crave attention and affirmation. Weather they know it or not they have a need to know I care about them. Few people in this world are motivated to do anything for another unless they know their work, energy, thought and time spent will be well-received and ultimately cared about.

“But they should care about themselves and that should be what drives them to do well.” Some skeptics have told me.

Perhaps some do, but most seventh graders care about things, people and events that are right in front of them. To see the big picture is overwhelming and foreign to most. Though college is right around the corner, they still see it as a mile a way.

“My son sees the bigger picture,” the parents may argue. “He already knows he wants to go to USC or Stanford.”

I am sure he does.

“Remember what we were like in seventh [...]

Too Good To Be True

I probably need therapy but instead I’ll just unload all my fears and anxieties to you. As some of you might know, I recently graduated college and got engaged to the BIL (Boy I Love) all in the same day. It was a dream day, except it wasn’t a dream, I woke up the next day, looked at my finger and there was the gold and diamond ring that has been in his family for 100 years.

Every time I look at the ring, which is about 1,236 times a day, I have a mixture of love, excitement and terror. Make no mistake, I know I am marrying the best man in the world. He is everything I could ever ask for and more. I am just worried he doesn’t know what he is getting himself into. Hasn’t he read my columns? Doesn’t he know that I loose stuff and I forget stuff and I don’t always pay attention when I am driving and sometimes I accidentally gain five or six or seven pounds. I get parking tickets and my car is a mess and I usually run about 10 minutes late for everything.

Anyway, as we all know, actions speak louder than words and I think lately I have subconsciously been trying to prepare him for what might be a lifetime of “opps moments.“

A couple of weeks ago I lost the key to his house, I didn’t say anything, instead I took the hide a key and then I lost the hide a key. Opps.

Last weekend we drove to Mammoth and when we got there I realized I left my purse in a gas station bathroom in the Mohave Desert. Opps.

The BIL is so forgiving, [...]