eregyrn: (-GHowl - windblown)


The only thing that could make this better is if there was a little advancing timeline crawl along the bottom or something.
eregyrn: (Axe-Murderer Santa)
You know what the definition is of "BAD CAT"? A cat who removes an ornament from the tree and has to play with it, loudly, at 4:27am. A cat whose name is MORGAN.

(This was, luckily, one of the styrofoam ornaments that I hang on the lower branches with just this eventuality in mind. I'm a little bummed, though, because -- and [livejournal.com profile] raqs will know what I'm talking about -- it's the only blue one left from the set of ultra-cheap styro balls wrapped in shiny silky floss that we bought at, like, Ames or something a skillion years ago. I have lots of red ones left, but just one blue and one green. They're very shiny! I like them on lower branches, and on the window-facing sides of the tree. I wish I knew where to get some more.)


I can't brag about my shopping prowess today, because Someone is likely reading this LJ. But I can say that there are certain stores that are really, really dangerous to go into at any time, and it was only with a great effort of willpower that I got out without purchasing many more things. (Hah! Let 'em wonder!)


You know what I hate? How when you go back to the same vendor to buy a pair of jeans to replace the jeans you love but that unfortunately have finally developed holes in strategically inconvenient places, you [a] have to buy the next size larger, even though it can't just be your Ever Expanding Ass's fault, because the old jeans still fit perfectly well (are a bit LOOSE, even), so, BITE ME, Gap; and [b] are seized with the suspicion that these new jeans are somehow flimsier than the old ones, and honestly, the old ones are not THAT old, what gives? Grr.

It's not just my jeans, either. My gloves, which have done yeoman's work for something like 4 or 5 years, finally developed a hole after shovelling on Sunday. *sigh* And my BELOVED GREEN VELVET SCARF (which [livejournal.com profile] raqs brought for me years and years and years ago, from Germany) is developing a lot of holes/splitting/rips in its silk lining, and I just don't know what to *DO*. *sob* (Also, the gloves perfectly match the scarf, which is sad, because that particular nice shade of dark olive is so hard to find.)

I wish my clothes would get the memo that it's a week to Xmas and replacing key items of my wardrobe wasn't on my agenda.


ETA: What do you do when your bosses give you a holiday gift that is genuinely very pretty, but difficult to actually use/wear? I've just been given a lovely ethnic-y woven scarf, and my feeling is that I would like to figure out some way to use/wear it around the office in future, but... it's very *short*. Difficult to wear in practical terms. And I deeply suspect that if I do wear it the only way I can figure doing so, it will look like nothing so much as a prayer shawl.
eregyrn: (Default)
Sometimes, eBay is a savior. And sometimes, not.

I have these black shoes. I love them. I wear them ALL the time. They're slip-on loafer style, but they're sleek, and they have chunky soles that were fashionable when I bought them 5 years ago, and might still be fashionable, or at least I can still get away with them. And the height of the soles is good because I favor slightly long pants, so it's good to have a little lift. Right? Okay, but the problem is that these shoes (which I think I got at DSW) are wearing out, because as I said, I wear them ALL the time. And I'm sad. Because the reason I wear them all the time is that they are the perfect combination of fashion-y and crazily comfortable.

So I got this idea. I would check for the brand on sale online... but it's a brand called Lower East Side, and... hah hah, good luck finding shoes amongst all the other hits you get for that in a Google search. So then I thought I'd check on eBay.... Score! I found a pair of chunky-soled black loafer-style shoes in the right size from that company, with detailing that I really liked, for like $8. Woo!

Unfortunately... I get them. And I find that the photo of them somewhat concealed that they have a much higher heel than I thought. Like, an inch higher than the Favorite Shoes I'm trying to find a substitute for. And... they really aren't that comfortable. Not like the Favorite Shoes. Which is a bummer, because I *do* like the detailing a lot. *sigh* Back to the drawing board.

And? Can I just say?

http://www.zappos.com/n/p/dp/7289053/c/42440.html

I will never, ever, EVER understand what about these shoes is worth $450. Not unless those soles are, like, hollow, and filled with cocaine, or something. Or it turns out that the suede is made from the skins of rare songbirds. I mean, jeez. (No, I don't like this pair anyway. I just came across them while browsing this site. There are a few pairs from this same designer that I liked enough that if I could I might try them on, but those are still in the $320 range. I just picked these as an example, as they were the most expensive and the least attractive.)

Finally...

Apparently my small emergency backup cat, Morgan, likes to eat bugs. But she cannot be bothered to make the kill herself. This is the cat who snorked up the smushed thousand-legger that I reported on a while ago. Well, this morning, there was a very logy housefly jumping around the kitchen floor, and Morgan was right THERE, following it. But not doing anything. So I stepped on it. (In slippers!) And in the time it took me to go get a tissue and come back to pick it up and flush it... Morgan had eaten it. Lazy, lazy cat. Also, disgusting.
eregyrn: (Default)
I have the unaccountable urge to dye my hair red. Actually, a nice auburn. This came over me suddenly last week and the thought is still in my head. I don't really know WHY, except I'm bored, I guess.

There are only three problems with the idea. One is that I know from past experience how long it takes to grow color out again (my natural color is lighter than that), and how half-assedly it works during that process to try to dye/bleach your hair back to close to your natural color. So, it's a pain in the ass, is what I'm saying. Two, is my hairdresser. I'm serious. I love my hairdresser. She and I have been in this for about 8 years now. She's fabulous (this is not subjective; at one point, on my introduction, she was also cutting the hair of 95% of my local friends -- [livejournal.com profile] raqs, [livejournal.com profile] my_tallest, [livejournal.com profile] karlchristian, [livejournal.com profile] flos_campi, [livejournal.com profile] hedgies; the latter two of whom still go to her too). She gives me great haircuts.

The problem? She's primarily a colorist. In fact she only ever cuts hair any more for her "legacy" customers, like me. Mostly she does color. I think she won Best of Boston once, or something. And therein lies the rub -- her haircuts are expensive, but I pay it because I spent 25 years getting atrocious haircuts and therefore I cannot put a price on a hairdresser whom I know and who doesn't fuck up my hair. (She spent a period of over a year down in Providence, part of that time working from her *home*, and yes, I drove the 45 minutes down there every time I wanted a cut.) But her coloring? Even more expensive. And dude, I'm just not willing to pay it for the ephemerality of color.

I started out with her right around the time I'd decided to grow out of my red phase. Sometimes she'd try to get me to let her color my hair -- give me highlights or streaks or whatever the hell, but... no. Recently, I decided I was bored with the mousy-ness, and -- swear to god -- got a $6 bottle of Sun-In, the stuff you spray in and use a hair-dryer on and it lightens your hair, which with me makes me a dark blonde. I got compliments on it. She took it fairly well, too, though I could tell she really wished that I was letting *HER* do it. But the thing is... Sun-In is way less chemically invasive than what she'd do. So I justified it to myself. I wasn't actually COLORING my hair, I was bleaching it. Plus, *dude* -- $6 a bottle, which is repeated applications, versus... hell, I don't know, but I'm sure it'd be at *least* $50 a pop or more for whatever she'd want to do to me.

But, coloring my hair a dark red again... well, that's coloring. I used to do it with the usual CVS-bought $10 kits, and that's probably what I'd do again, because I'm cheap, and because I liked the results fine. (I have hair of steel; can't damage it.) But I can just FEEL the waves of preemptive disapproval coming from my hairdresser... and if I walk in there with dark red hair, it's going to be really, really obvious that I did the thing that, as a professional, she spits upon. *sigh*

The third thing? Is the most ironic, actually... I don't want to cover up my grey. All, like, eight strands of it, yeah (nyah nyah). Originally when I let my natural color come back in, it was in part because I was curious to see if I *was* going grey, and I was also getting to the point where I didn't want to look like I was coloring my hair to cover up my grey. Approximately 10 years later, frankly, I don't have much more grey than I had back then (nyah nyah). But that's 10 years further into "not wanting to look like I'm *trying* to cover up my grey". Frankly, I kind of like it. Although, that's now, when my hair's pretty light and it's kind of hard to see.

Dither, dither. My hairdresser's presumed disapproval is actually a highly influencing factor in all this.
eregyrn: (Default)
Call me crazy, but I actually like jeans from the Gap. Or I used to... which is what this post is about.

A number of years ago, the Gap came out with these stretch bootcut jeans that were GREAT. I immediately bought a selection of them. I liked the length (on me, tended to be slightly long, even in regular; but also came in tall). I liked where the waist fell. I had decided that I love bootcut and that all my pants henceforth must be bootcut. (I have always, always loathed tapered-ankle pants. Loathe. The 80s weren't good to me.) And the stretch fabric was fabulous -- reasonably heavy and sturdy-feeling, but with just a little bit of stretchiness for comfort.

A year or so later when I decided that I needed a new pair of sandblast jeans in a slightly-larger size, all this was still true.

A couple of years after that, I branched out, and bought some more jeans from Gap that were more flare than bootcut, a little; that were a bit lower-rise, maybe. In my head I considered those "fashion" jeans, though, not "staple" jeans. So I was willing to put up with the fact that the stretch denim used in them was... a bit thinner, a bit less sturdy-feeling than in my previously-purchased basic, original, bootcuts.

This week, my favorite pair of basic, sandblast Gap bootcut jeans succumbed to an odd split down the seat, largely along the edge of the inner seam of the back pocket. (Odd, because that wasn't where I would have expected them to split.) What's also odd is that -- this was the larger pair I'd gone to get a few years ago, and lately they'd been kind of loose on me and I was just sort of thinking about maybe going to get a pair one size down... ergo, they didn't split because they were so tremendously overstrained. I don't even recall noticing them splitting. It was odd to take them off and find this gaping hole. Also, the "when did that happen, and for how long was I walking around today with my underwear gapingly visible?" thing.

So... fine. Am bummed, because I've now had those jeans for a sufficient number of years that they are The Perfect Softness. You know the kind I mean. But the split is in such a place that it doesn't look like there's a suave way to fix them and just go on with life. So. Go to the Gap to pick up a new pair. And here is where the subject line of this post comes into play.

Look, Gap. I realize you are all trendy and shit. In a way, I appreciate that. But my point is -- fine, debut all the trendy new jeans you like. Sometimes, I may buy them (see above). But DO NOT get rid of the STAPLES, dammit.

The upshot is that I could not, for love or money, find the GOOD kind of stretch bootcut jeans. Two options seem to be left. One is bootcut jeans, non-stretch. And the other is stretch bootcuts, but in the slightly thinner, less sturdy fabric, PLUS not in your basic jeans-color normal old sandblast any more, only in stuff like "whiskered authentic", whatever the hell that means. And maybe that's nice but it's not BASIC, which is what I want. The only classic-jeans-looking sandblast left are the non-stretch kind, which... fine. Fine. I'll go with that. But it's not the saaaaaaaame.

Is it honestly too much to ask of big, stable clothing companies that they carry some basic items, and just KEEP carrying those, in addition to whatever wacky fashionable mutant versions they want to carry in any given year?

This is, of course, I rant I have always made regarding hair-care and skin-care products. It's the same principle. I want what I want, dammit. I worked hard to find the thing that works for me. I don't want to have to do all the legwork to reinvent the wheel every couple of years. *grump*
eregyrn: (Default)
So, weeks ago, we all remember when Dove's "real" models made such a splash, and that was cool, although one's glee was somewhat tempered by the contradiction inherent in what they were being used to sell.

Now Dove can move over for Nike, apparently.

Salon's article today on this new ad campaign points out that the nice thing about the Nike ads is that they aren't selling anything in particular, just the Nike brand and slogan ("just") -- and certainly nothing that contradicts the use of the models or the sentiments described in the (sometimes head-scratching, but kind of charming) ad-copy.

See for yourself:

http://nikewomen.nike.com/nikewomen/us/v2/media/swf/wkcampaign/butt_800x600.jpg
http://nikewomen.nike.com/nikewomen/us/v2/media/swf/wkcampaign/thighs_1024x768.jpg
http://nikewomen.nike.com/nikewomen/us/v2/media/swf/wkcampaign/legs_1024x768.jpg
http://nikewomen.nike.com/nikewomen/us/v2/media/swf/wkcampaign/knees_1024x768.jpg
http://nikewomen.nike.com/nikewomen/us/v2/media/swf/wkcampaign/hips_800x600.jpg
http://nikewomen.nike.com/nikewomen/us/v2/media/swf/wkcampaign/shoulders_800x600.jpg

You know, honestly -- the hips one is something I could see putting up on my wall.
eregyrn: (Default)
Instead, it's proof that I finally, FINALLY got one of those damned doll-generator thingies to work.




No, they didn't really have a good approximation of my new glasses; or my old ones either, actually. Nor could I change the eye-color; my eyes aren't blue. And don't bug me about the hair, okay? They didn't *have* my hair. But who cares? These things are such a laughable approximation in the first place. I could get all philosophical about them being interesting not because they're accurate (which of course they are not), but because of what it reveals about the user through the choices they make from the offerings provided, which when you think about it is not all that different from what posting all those stupid meme and quiz results says about anyone (i.e. the quiz may be lame, but the way you take it still says *something* about you).

But who would that fool? I did it because it was fun in the way that playing with computerized paper-dolls is fun. Hell, I've been tempted to get into City of Heroes with [livejournal.com profile] telepresence merely because I want the chance to generate cool-ass characters like Doctor Chocolate and the Ferrous Pharaoh. It's mesmerizing.

It's even mesmerizing when it's a somewhat frustrating and lame-ass doll-generator like the one used to produce the image above. (Let the record show a complete lack of ability to dress your doll in men's Hawaiian shirts, which would have helped me to produce a more accurate picture.)
eregyrn: (Default)
Huh. I guess July was kind of a bust for me, update-wise. I should break out of my apathy and actually write up thoughts on the new season of Stargate: SG-1 and Atlantis, instead of just posting drive-bys to other people's LJs. (In short: am *loving* SG1's S8 so far; am quite liking SGA.)

But in the meantime...

Obligatory pictures and details about my new cat. )

Obligatory whiiiiiiiiiining about Stargate props up for auction that I cannot afford. )

And finally, I got new glasses. Which is meaningless to many of you who have never seen a picture of me anyway, in any sort of glasses whatsoever. But these are much bolder, more stylish, more hipster-like dark-framed not-quite-cats-eye glasses that I would never have had the guts to go with had [livejournal.com profile] my_tallest and [livejournal.com profile] telepresence not served as my Fashion Consultants at the Lenscrafters ("You've got ABOUT AN HOUR, like it SAYS IN THE AD."). Forget "Queer Eye for the Straight Girl" -- [livejournal.com profile] raqs and I think that these two guys would be watchable all by themselves. Certainly the women in the Lenscrafters store were entertained.
eregyrn: (Default)
...all the way over into Arrant Stupidity. I'm talking about marketing wonks, both in general and those who work for the Gap in particular.

Yesterday, I bought some new pants at the Gap. Sort of striped, cotton, slightly-stretchy bootcut trousers, to be precise (plus, they were on sale). That's fine. What's got me scratching my head is the fact that on their website, the Gap describes the color of these pants as "vicuna". (Apparently they don't want to confuse the issue by the inclusion of the tilda.)

So I'm looking at these things on-screen, and I'm thinking, "Well, I personally would call that 'taupe', but, whatever..." Because god knows, by this point I am used to marketing wonks and their incontrollable urge to find newer and fancier terms for basic colors. Spend a couple of seasons shopping with J.Jill and learning to tell the difference between "aubergine" and "mulberry", or "sunset" and "tangerine" (because "salmon" is now too pedestrian a term, I suppose), and you come to take it for granted then when you shop for womens' clothes, you're going to have to decode some weird color terms.

But -- I'm getting to the head-scratching part -- when I go to an actual store and find the pants, they're...green. Kind of an olive-y, sage-y green, but, you know, unmistakeably verdant. Not tan. Not taupe. And it's not just me. The girl behind the counter who has to call another store to see if they have my size in stock calls them "the green striped pants", and the girl at the store at which I pick them up calls them "the green striped pants".

And the thing is -- by no stretch of the imagination are VICU√ĎA green.

So, check me on this: now not only do the marketing wonks look pretentious by trying to come up with exotic terms for colors, but, they can look stupid as well by, clearly, misunderstanding the meaning and association of the exotic word they've chosen to represent a color. Brilliant.

Either that, or marketing has just reached a brave new frontier in which they have all decided that the exotic words they choose to represent colors no longer actually have to relate to the color! "Vicuna" sounds...well, I don't know what THEY think it sounds like, exotic and sophisticated and adventurous or something (because, c'mon people, it's a SKINNY MEMBER OF THE CAMELID FAMILY)...but I guess they think it sounds like something that women who buy at the Gap would want to associate with their clothes. And that's ever so much more valuable than, you know, that old-fashioned idea of actually conveying any information about the product.

Still, I like the pants.

(In deference to people who have Friended me recently, I make a solemn vow to try to remember to use the lj-cut thing more often. Because I do tend to go on, when I infrequently post.)

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