Entries in Pop Culture (132)


exchange with hairstylist yesterday


Her: Obama is ruining this country.

Mrs. G: .........................

(For physical and mental conservation, who wants to discuss politics with anyone holding scissors near her exposed, defenseless ears? Not Mrs. G, that's who.)

fifteen minutes later...

Her: My boyfriend had a bad car accident three months ago. He broke nearly every bone in his left leg and spent two days in the hospital. We were really lucky he's still on his parents' insurance plan.

Mrs. G: How old is he?

Her: 24

Mrs. G: You know, Obama was responsible for people your age being able to stay on their parents' insurance policies until they are 26.

Her: Are you sure about that? I've never heard anything about that.

Mrs. G: Yes, I'm sure.

Her: Weird.

Mrs. G: .........................

(For physical and mental conservation, who wants to discuss politics at all?)


Good Shit: The Maria Bamford Show

Derf Naomi D. sent this video to Mrs. G. Mrs. G. can only assume Naomi thought she might be able to relate to it. And she can. Mrs. G. has played most of these parts at one time or another.


Hey Chicago: A War Zone Is A War Zone Is A War Zone by Aaryn Belfer

In case you missed it this week—what with the break-up of Katy Perry and John Mayer, and the ongoing saga that is Lisa Rinna’s lips—the Chicago Public School system banned a book. Yes, they did. Oh, no they didn’t. Yes they di…er…wait. What the…Calgon, take me away!

I think somebody should ban Lisa Rinna’s lips.

Anyway. The book in question, a graphic novel called Persepolis, is a memoir about a young girl’s childhood during Iran’s Islamic revolution. It was eventually made into an animated film that, in 2008, earned an Academy Award nomination. This would be a good time to stop, go buy a copy of this book as a big middle finger to CPS decision makers, and then come back and finish reading. I’ll wait.

You got it? Cool.

Now where was I? Oh, yes! The puritans at CPS!


The folks at the top seem to have concerns about the “graphic illustrations and language” in this book. Administrators are worried about the “developmental preparedness” of students and their “readiness” to tackle this particular material, content that includes violence, weed, a suicide attempt, and (gasp!) sex. And so, to protect the children from the pain of the world, they ordered Persepolis removed from all schools district-wide.

Of course, there was an ensuing uproar by people who are sane, to which CPS quickly responded by saying, “Haha! We didn’t ban it ban it. We were misunderstood! What we meant was we are removing it from the 7th grade curriculum only (aaaand maybe/possibly/probably from the 8th through 10th grade rotation). Oh, did we say that out loud?”

According to a memo from the CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett —fired off after the initial Remove! All! Copies! directive was made embarrassingly public—this book is really meant for AP students in their junior and senior years. Being, you know, advanced as they are.

I think it’s safe to say that Byrd-Bennett needs to get real. The woman needs to sit her ass in a chair and plug into Part One and then, if she can stand it, Part Two of the This American Life special on Harper High School, which should be required listening for every single American adult, and not just those who decide whether a book is too racy for school kids in Chitown (though it is the latter who should be first in line for the podcast). And pssssst! Hey Barbara! In case you’re reading, Harper is a school in your district.

Once she’s finished listening, Byrd-Bennett should ask herself if a great many of Chicago’s children don’t have the faculties to deal with the unpleasant realities of coming of age in a war zone. She should have to answer this question publicly.

I haven’t read Persepolis. But I sat (cried) through the Harper High program. And I will say this: If kids can survive what is happening to them under the oblivious eyes of the CPS, I’m pretty sure they can deal with whatever is in that book.

Whether they can deal with Lisa Rinna’s lips is another question entirely.



You can read more of Aaryn Belfer at Thematically Fickle.


six things that caused mrs. g. to sleep fitfully last night


Downer alert: Don't read if you are having a bad day.

Click to read more ...


There's A New Pope In Town by Aaryn Belfer

So. I was going to tell you a story today about how I have longed for these shoes:


For many years. They’ve visited me in my dreams, that’s how badly I wanted them. And I was going to tell you a story about how I didn’t purchase them way back in 2007 because of the unreasonable-but-could-be-rationalized price that I was not—despite my best efforts—able to rationalize at the time. (And I can rationalize just about anything.) I was going to tell you about how, a few weeks ago, a similar version reappeared in the J. Crew catalogue with an even more unreasonable-but-could-be-rationalized price…


…and how, while I made a mental list of those rationalizations and palmed my credit card, I somehow managed to put a pair of these in my Zappos shopping cart instead:

In case you didn’t notice, these don’t remotely resemble either of the other pairs I’ve been ogling. The perimenopausal mind reels.


Thus, I was going to offer an analysis of my life that’s revealed in my having skipped the fierce (and fiercely petable) heels in favor of these meh, zzzzzzzzzzzz, Olive Oyl, definitely-not-sexy-but-godDAMNit-they’re-comfortable! Dasnko clogs that, just yesterday, my daughter’s 7th grade mentor referred to as “adorable.”

I was going to include an analysis of whether the solidarity I felt with a twelve year old was appropriate, and why her approval mattered anyway, but that it did, and that her excitement over my middle-aged-lady choice instantly made me feel simultaneously victorious and less (oh, Mrs. G., I’m so sorry in advance)…cat lady. I was going to tell you that, regardless of my descent into middle-age practicality, I was thankful for this child’s thumbs up. Because me and Harry Weathersby Stamps, rest his soul? We ain’t got time for no cats.

Funny that I should pine for shoes with cat print, something for future psychological investigation I'm sure.

Anyhow. That story I just mentioned has to be put on hold, because there was white smoke billowing from the Vatican yesterday in the church’s most dramatic, hocus-pocusy manner. The new leader has been revealed and he has me feeling a little bit frisky. A little bit rawr:

I think my wallet is about to be $350 lighter. 




You can read more of Aaryn Belfer at Thematically Fickle.


Before Sleep 3


1 Thing Mrs. G. Wishes No One Would Every Say to Her Again

1) It's God's will. Really? Did he leave one behind, because Mrs. G. would like a copy of it.

What do you wish no one would ever say to you again?


just one more reason mrs. g. should not talk

Last night Mrs. G. dreamed she was filming a love scene with Brad Pitt. Mrs. G. can't recall what the movie was about, but she is sure it was one you could watch in your neighborhood Cineplex. Also, if Mr. G. or her children are reading this, Mrs. G. was fully clothed from the waist down.

Also, if Mr. G. or Mrs. G's children are reading this, Brad was nuzzling her neck discussing String Theory and Schrodinger's Cat, and Mrs. G. sat up and asked him point blank if she was supposed to "act" for the cameras or just naturally let go. Just let go.

And just like that, poof, Brad was gone.

Mrs. G. supposes it was some kind of bullshit lesson on staying in the moment and keeping her counsel. Has she mentioned she hates bullshit lessons...and staying in the moment (there are so many other places to be) and keeping her counsel?

Learn from Mrs. G's mistakes. Please. Someone needs to.