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July 2011

Matt Bomer -- Yes!

Was Matt Bomer one of the actors suggested for Dr. Kevin Novak in the Ashley movie? I can't remember, and I watched him on "Watch What Happens Live" and I have to give him a hearty thumbs-up!

I'm not into the pretty boys. Like them smart, and he was VERY smart and funny on Watch what Happens, so yes, I'd love to have him as Dr. Kevin Novak. Not that I get to pick or have any say in who they pick for the movie. But I'm just saying, I think someone suggested him, and I ignorantly denied him.

I humbly apologize. Matt Bomer would rock Dr. Kevin Novak. I can admit when I'm wrong. Luckily, it doesn't happen often. ; )


Happy Fourth of July!

It's one of my favorite holidays. I get barraged with historical facts from my American-loving son. Everyone is in my favorite clothes: NAUTICAL. There's BBQ (like on Twelve Oaks) and Fireworks!


It just doesn't get any better. Except my older boys are screwing up my favorite weekend, and now that I'm working, that is the worst! They don't get home from houseboats until the middle of the weekend, which leaves us...stuck. No happy visit to grandma's and my cousins. No water skiing on the lake (okay, except my boys are doing that this week, they're only screwing it up for the rest of us. LOL)

Getting older is not for the faint of heart. I did get a Calvin Klein 40's dress yesterday at Loehmann's, and that's going to have to do as my celebration. Isn't that pathetic? What's everyone else doing to celebrate our nation's birth? What's life like out there without four kids?

Brad Handed the Friend Card...

Emily is opening up about her breakup with Brad. I think we all saw this coming, that she'd extend her fifteen minutes. At the end of the article, she claims that more than anything, he was a friend to her.


Didn't anyone who watched the show see that coming? What is it about love that makes us want to believe it's mutual? Ugh. And the real clincher, why does EVERYONE see it but the person being handed the friend card? Do we get special blinders or something? Thoughts?


Octomom: Mental Illness is not a Criminal Offense

It's true. Octomom Nadya Suleman has said she hates her eight babies, and that her older kids are animals. Maybe because kids weren't meant to be raised like packrats?

But at the same time, how do you blame her? She's clearly mentally-ill and she's been enabled by the state and maybe her parents. Though I'm not sure how you stop someone bent on having a bajillion children.

The laws are written for parents. Even though they're nuts, did you know that? If you divorce an insane person, they will get rights to the children. Even if you think they might hurt those children. If they never have physically hurt the children, they're home free.

I find Octomom disturbing, but also helpful because she is a visual to everything that is wrong with how we look at mental illness in this country. Who is the best judge of a mentally-ill person? Probably their children, but they'd have to be very abused to get the right to speak in court. The court always assumes the sane parent is trying to get the insane parent away because they're angry and bitter.

Did you know even if you've been released from a mental hospital recently, that is not a reason to NOT have custody? The problem with that scenario (see Mel Gibson) is sometimes mentally-unstable people can be "good" for long enough periods of time. Certainly long enough for a well-paid doctor to say they're fine.

Children have no rights at all in our country. Need proof? If she collected dolls, she'd be on Hoarders. As it is, there's not a lot we can do when she collects children and welfare.


The Naked Man in the doorway wasn't your first clue? A&F Sued

Locally, Abercrombie & Fitch is being sued, by a Muslim gal who was forced to "not wear the veil" at work. Which naturally harms her civil rights. Okay, except it doesn't. A&F is selling sex. You don't see it? Maybe passing their dark, overwhelmingly sandlewood-scented storefront might give it away. No? Then, look for the half-naked man in movie-screen size.


Still not convinced? Walk in, see the pretty people dressed alike. They're almost willing you to look that good. For a price.

A&F gave her a job. They didn't have to do so. There are a lot of people out of work -- it shows that her veil was not a reason to turn her away (which would have violated her civil rights.) I contend that wearing the veil while selling trampy clothes is akin to having a nun in full habit sell them to you. Doesn't really work. Civil rights issue?

A lot of people live here who wear the veil. I have no issues with the veil, but if your work has a distinct dress code, it's not a civil rights' issue to not dress in the dress code. You've heard me complain about not being able to wear jeans to work. But I CHOOSE to work there, and they can control their environment. I can choose to not work there.

This is a free country. Freedom doesn't mean that you get to do whatever you like, whenever you like and we have to put up with it. Freedom means we put up with each other's differences. It doesn't mean your differences are forced upon someone else regardless of the circumstances.

Your rights end where others' begin. And A&F is selling sex. Do I agree with their version of teen clothing? Heck no. But I choose not to shop there. The gal claims she got the job while wearing the head veil, so it should have been obvious she'd wear it while working. I'd say that they probably handed her the dress code, so it should have been obvious that you wouldn't get to wear the veil while working. I'd also add a hearty DUH!

Budget Fun for Everyone

I had an Aussie friend (here, not over the pond) and she and her husband saved enough money using "YNAB" where they were able to move back to their beloved Brisbane with their two kids. They already owned one house there, but wanted to keep that and purchase another near family.

Hence, I purchase YNAB (you need a budget.) The concept behind it is that you give every dollar a job (even savings and emergency funds, etc.) and put your money to work. You don't let it tell you what to do. The concept works well for me because it's in the present.

The reason I think it works so well is the same reason my financial group I work for, works so well. You know where everything is, and you're on top of it. So if something isn't working, you can make an immediate change. I think one person living in ignorance is the main trouble for a lot of financial problems. Or maybe not.

Today, I put together a portfolio for a man and his wife. They were worth about $20 million. And the lived on $30k a year. That depressed the heck out of me, knowing the expenses with our kids. And I grumbled to my boss, do they have any life at all??

She laughed, and she said, "That's HIS expenses. He has no idea what his wife spends. That's what we aim to do, bring them together."

And I thought, really? Because if my husband thought he was living fine on $32k a year, and we had that kind of money, I'd say his ignorance was okay by me. LOL Not really, but I'm often amazed by how little men realize what life costs. Life is expensive, and because we women know how much we spend on kids' shoes, and guys don't, they're bound to think they're more frugal than they are. Do you think that's a bad thing or a good thing?

I mean, the guy thinks his wife looks gorgeous on $200 a year. Do you really want to mess with that?


Ashley, Ashley, Ashley

I wonder if Brad's counselor might be available??

I seriously did not pay much attention to the show last night. I have a bajillion things to do on deadline week, and did I not tell you? Edits are back for another project this week. LOL

So I don't think it was scripted anymore. I really think Bentley is a dirtball. The fact that he took a trip on the show to be a JERK says it all. You're not going to be famous, dude. You're not even good-looking. What Ashley saw in him, I will never understand.

So what did you think of the guys getting ticked because she was "honest with her feelings." Oh yeah, guys love that when you have a breakdown over another guy in front of them. Does she think THEY don't have feelings?

Ames sort of creeps me out, I have to say. He's just, I don't know, not real or something. Who is he? What's he about?

JP handles everything with ease. I think he's the only one who can deal.

Slow, but they get there...

Last night, my nearly sixteen year old son came to me, and said, "Mom, do you remember that guy that asked us to call him 'Papa Bear' and he gave us candy?" I didn't remember him.

"He was at our Christian school and you told us to stay away from him."

"Oh right. Yeah?" (Keep in mind, this was ten years' ago.)

"I just figured it out. You thought he was a pedophile, huh?"

No comment.

"I couldn't understand why we couldn't go near the nice man with candy, but now I'm glad you said that. I think he was a pedophile." LOL I'm glad to know he listened anyway.

My skirt is too short today. Ever have days like that? Where you're dressed wrong, and everything goes badly? That's my day, so I'm going to focus on a win even if it was ten years' ago. My MacAir crashed (the week of my deadline) and I think I left my brain somewhere with the rest of my skirt.

Family Dynamics of Biblical Proportion

Last night, I watched "Swimming Upstream" for the second time in as many weeks. It's a story about Australian swimmer, Tony Fingleton and his dysfunctional family. Tony and his sister wrote the book the movie is based upon, and apparently, their father was pretty abusive and pitted the family kids against one another in competition. Granted, this makes for some great athletes, but really horrible family dynamics.

Honestly, I think this is the worst of all the family dynamics. A parent who creates competition among the siblings. Later in life, the kids nearly always are torn apart. One (the sick one in my opinion) will support the parent (to be the "good" child) and the other will have anger issues and not know how to deal with the truth. Denial. Anger. Two very dysfunctional ways of dealing with abuse. The rest of the siblings will usually take sides, but even then, there is no togetherness.

There are several truths in this kind of dysfunction: 1. I became a better swimmer/person/student because my father pushed me so hard. 2. He was a very abusive man. 3. His childhood damaged his ability to parent. All three are probably true. It doesn't make it go away to ignore reality. Or especially to deny someone else's reality.

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Loving based on accomplishment has to be the worst trait in a parent. Love from a parent should be unconditional. Am I always happy with what my kids do? Heck no, but my love is never based on their performance.

Anyway, while I watched the movie, which is mainly about how the father loved and believed in one boy more than the other (John) and how the other brother surpassed him in swimming (Tony) made me wonder, what's the story now? A family that can't respect their sibling's own view of childhood, is going to fall apart. John claims that Tony created the riff between us to sell more books/movie tickets. I would think Tony has some deep-seated issues by being the best in Australia yet never earning his father's approval because "the wrong kid won."

If you've read "Look Me in the Eye" by John Elder Robison compared to his brother's childhood book, "Running with Scissors" (Augusten Burroughs), you'll see that two people in the same family can have different outlooks. Doesn't make either one of them wrong. The secret with these two, is that they respect the other's viewpoint and supported their right to tell it. The brothers each acknowledge that their individual experience was what it was. (Incidentally, their mother does not.)

I'm sorry to say it's not that way in the Fingleton family. John Fingleton is now writing a book about his father. (Surviving Maggie) He claims it's more concerned with the "truth" than the drama of his brother Tony's story. Oh my gosh, that statement right there makes me so mad, because as sure as I sit here, I figure he'll try to say his dad was a saint on some level. That he didn't abuse the kids. If you're the chosen child? You're more abused than any of them because you're an adult and still believing the lie. You can't see the father for who he really is and I'm all too familiar with this sick scenario.

John's book will be about his father's life before the movie takes place. Apparently, all his father survived. Which to me, and I know, I should read it first, but it sounds like an excuse book. All alcoholics need enablers, and that's what this sounds like. To condone the father's behavior because the kids became great people, is something I've seen in a similar competitive family and as nearly sixty-year olds, this family is concerned still with who is "right" -- not the truth. (Which is different for each of them.)

I'm not sure if I'll read "Surviving Maggie" -- but I will say, it's hard to believe John's claim that the father was not as abusive as Tony claims. Not because I know what happened in the family, but because of the outcome: A split family who cannot agree on their childhoods. Textbook dysfunctional family outcome.

Isn't that the hallmark of dysfunction? A lack of respect for someone else's point of view? One of my favorite movies in the 80's was "Mommie Dearest" -- I don't know why I love that movie, but every time it's on, I call my mother and shout, "No wire hangers!" (I used to call her Mommie Dearest when she made me do something I didn't want to do. yes, I was obnoxious.) Anyway, Christina Crawford and her brother also disagree on their viewpoints of childhood and they are estranged. That's the worst thing about abuse. Not only is your childhood destroyed, but so is your adulthood if you need your sibling to accept your reality and they're unwilling to do so. Your family is lost to you even after the parent is long gone, their sickness survives.

At some point, we have to grow up and accept our own realities, even if no one will corroborate the abuse. That's a hard one to swallow and it's epic how many families it effects. Know any dysfunctional families like this one?