3.31.2004

The Little Things

I've now started holding the elevator door for people when I'm heading upstairs to work. I'm continually amazed how much positive energy this little gesture creates. People are usually surprised and always grateful. I guess we're so used to being trampled upon, rushed in front of, and pushed around in our daily lives that this small act is a sadly unexpected treat. Other things in this category: paying the toll for the car behind you; leaving a greater-than-20% tip; putting extra money in the meter.... I can't actually think of any more off the top of my head, but you're welcome to add comments. And if this is a little too "Chicken Soup for the Straight Girl"-esque for your taste, well, that's OK too.

3.22.2004

The hair, the makeup, the clothes

So the TV thing went pretty well. I got my hair and makeup done by true professionals (who LOVED the highlights--in fact, I've been getting all sorts of compliments on them). With the help of my many beloved wardrobe consultants, I ended up wearing a smart but hip denim jacket with an orange sweater underneath and an orange bead necklace that was made for me (literally, on the spot) in New York Chinatown by someone at the Magic Jewelry story. (I'm now calling it my lucky necklace.) The whole ensemble helped me do what up until 9:30 on Sunday night seemed impossible: play Gran Turismo 4 on live television while talking semi-intelligibly about it! I'm terribly proud of myself. I even met Thom Filicia from Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, who fabulously told me to break a leg before I went on for my grand performance. It's all been rather magical!

3.16.2004

Color me over it

I got my hair done today, and I’ve finally accepted that (contrary to what I’ve attempted to convince myself over the last couple years of being without a dedicated, trusted colorist) my highlights are not “pretty straightforward,” “hard to screw up,” or “basic.” My head of hair is a sophisticated bird’s nest of different hues, one that--when properly color-choreographed--looks mysterious and modern, imbuing me with a subtle confidence and summoning the glamour girl within. I love leaving the salon after a coloring job well done. Unfortunately, that’s not how today went.

I’m not blaming James. He did the best he could given what he had to work with. See, my nest has gone all wonky; its ecology is totally out of whack ever since Doreen flew to another tree (as colorists too often do; “that freedom is one of the great things about our profession,” James perkily explained). I’ve been salon-hopping for a couple years now and haven’t found someone who can do me right, so my hair no longer speaks to any new colorist I see. (Or, if it does speak, I don’t like what it’s saying.) Anyway, poor James did a fine job considering what he had to work with, and he insists that he can work with me over the long term to get to just the right look I desire.

Nothing can change the fact that I’m currently terrified, but I suppose I’ll get used to my new hair. The thousands of people watching me on live TV this Sunday night won’t even have a clue that this is not my best look. So I must simply feign that subtle confidence and summon my glamour girl using...hmmm, now is when a good summoning spell would come in handy (those always work so well in videogames!). I must take plenty of deep breaths and remember that everybody’s eyes are on Lisa Ling anyway. And I must remember, next time I’m randomly dialing some colorist who happens to have an opening “this week!” that my highlights are not “pretty straightforward,” “hard to screw up,” or “basic.” Maybe James won’t be so terrifying next time.

3.07.2004

Let's talk about...

...the weather. Weather as a subject of conversation gets a bad rap. It's supposedly what people talk about when they have nothing else to say. But the weather affects our little lives so tremendously, why not talk about it? It's real and deserves some time in the spotlight.

Today, for example, it is downright hot, and I want to talk about it. Why do these hot days fall at any time outside of summer/early fall? Even spring days, in my opinion and experience, ought not be this warm. And why, once the sun is out for a day or two, do I suddenly feel the urge to purge my closet in a fit of proverbial spring cleaning? I don't even know how long all that stuff has been sitting there not hurting a fly, but suddenly it seems like a situation that desperately needs fixing, and I'm suddenly just raring to handle it.

The weather changes how we get around (everybody was out walking today because it was so darned pleasant outside). It changes what we eat (no more cafe au laits at brunch--today it was blood orange mimosas!). It changes how we feel about the way we spend our days (our friends quite understandably said it felt like the wrong weather to stay inside playing videogames, though I've done a bit of that today nonetheless). The weather affects us...so it's no wonder everybody talks about it a lot.

So, next time you can't think of anything to talk about except the weather, just go with it. You can rest assured that at least everyone will be able to relate.