Saturday, November 29, 2014
Women's clothes often do not include pockets. (Men's clothes always have pockets.) Maybe fashion designers assume women will carry a purse large enough to house anything and everything she might need (and whatever her dog, boyfriend, kids, family, friends and strangers might need on a given day, too). So pockets in women's clothes apparently are deemed unnecessary. I agree about the purse assumption. My purse is chock-full of the necessities, plus lots of other items for "just in case" scenarios. But there are times when I don't carry my purse. If these times coincide with times I'm wearing pocketless pants or shorts, what's a gal to do? I'll tell ya.
Every day I walk for exercise. I don't bring my purse and my shorts have no pockets. It's freeing not to have to lug a giant purse but still, I might need a few things while I'm out. If I'm walking for exercise I'm wearing a sports bra, which can house a few small items in addition to housing the parts it is designed to hold in and up. The elastic around the bottom of the sports bra ensures that things won't fall out. They stay just where you put them and are easy to find, unlike when I dig around in my purse, wondering if it has a trap door where my keys are hiding.
This bra-stuffing idea first occurred to me over the summer while I was at the beach with the kids. We chose a few special shells to bring home with us. Not planning ahead, I didn't have a bucket with us and I wasn't clutching my purse as I stood calf-deep in water. What to do if you don't have pockets? Stuff your bra, of course!
(I actually think this concept has been germinating in my brain for years, ever since I learned that in Spanish, the words for "purse" and "pocket" are the same: bolsa, which means bag. And a pocket really is a small bag, one that happens to be attached to your pants, so this is all quite logical.)
Anyway, a sports bra can hold quite a bit without anyone knowing anything unexpected is in there. I have tossed in lip balm, money, my driver's license, keys, tissues and shells. There are limits, of course. Let's say you need both your hands to push a stroller or hold your phone while walking your dog--I don't advise sticking your umbrella in your bra. No, I'm not concerned about weird stares you'd get by having an arrow shape pointing off your chest. I'm concerned only that the elastic in your sports bra would be stretched out to the point of no return if an umbrella were kept in there. And then you'd have to go buy a new sports bra and you'd be mad at me for telling you the old one could hold an umbrella which led to your needing to buy a new bra. I'd feel badly and I'd feel compelled to accompany you around for a while, holding your umbrella for you, just to redeem myself. And I've got things to do. So please, just believe me now--don't put the umbrella in there. We'll all be happier.
But lots of small things can fit in a bra. I think it makes excellent sense and since you're probably already feeling like you have too much to carry and do (simultaneously), just do what I do. Stuff that bra. Bras may not be a new invention, but carrying things in them is going to be the big new trend once word hits the street. Purses won't go the way of the dinosaur but it's nice to have an alternative for the times when you don't want to lug your bag.
Bras: the latest hands-free device.
Thursday, November 27, 2014
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
We don’t burn leaves like this now, but why haggle over details? Look how charming it is to see the bear rake leaves:
I think bears get too much of a bad rap. Everyone warns that they’ll break your car windows to get your picnic basket (pick-a-nick basket if we’re talking about Yogi Bear). But in some parts of the world, as Scarry has shown, bears are responsible creatures that rake their own leaves and even wear clothes when it gets extra cold. That hibernation story must be an urban legend…
And check out the turkey:
Monday, November 24, 2014
(Well, that’s the longest title I’ve ever given to a post! If you don’t know the song I was referencing it's a classic folk song, “The Green Grass Grew…” and you must check it out online.)
Sunday, November 23, 2014
draft of this post was written on Nov. 23, 2011;
It finally was posted on my blog on Nov. 23, 2014. Three years later. I feel a little silly that it sat
unfinished for that long. It’s true that I get all gung ho starting projects
and that I sometimes don’t finish them. Three years seems like a long time to
let this post marinate. Of course not when I compare it to the age of our
My mom likened the Isetta to the cars Richard Scarry drew, which is right-on! Here are two of Scarry’s illustrations that remind me a lot of the Isetta:
(The photo above must have been a later incarnation, with four wheels. But its top remains mostly glass, like the earliest models, and like Scarry's illustrations.)
In 1962 manufacturing of the Isetta was stopped. Among other factors, competition from the VW Beetle and Fiat created less demand for the Isetta. The Isetta’s seven year ride was short but this unusual car has not been forgotten. Today small cars are in demand due to fuel prices and a growing concern about the environment. Fuel-efficient cars, electric cars and hybrids are popular. I’d like to think that the Smart Car has picked up where the Isetta left off. It’s small, it’s very different-looking and it’s fuel-efficient. Did I mention cute? (No, I don’t drive one, nor do I work for Smart Car!)
I’m a good driver but I don’t understand much about how car engines work. I am convinced a really fast hamster is running through a wheel under the hood to power my car. Even if I know very little about how cars work, I’m intrigued by the design of cars from the 50s and 60s. Cars had such unusual design features back then: exaggerated lines and curves and true personality. And some had really fun, pointy tail fins!
This is only somewhat related to our chat about the Isetta, but I did spot a tuk-tuk on the streets of San Diego a few years back. It too is three-wheeled, small and efficient. I was shocked to see it!
That’s why I’m keeping my eyes peeled, people. I’m always on the lookout for something unusual and I feel it’s my calling to share my observations and photos with you. Fear not: this won’t be my last post about vintage cars or unusual sights. I’m on it…
Saturday, November 22, 2014
Friday, November 21, 2014
And here it is, finished:
It took a left turn at some point and veered a bit from my initial design. But then again, initial designs are not carved in stone. They are a jumping-off point and if you come up with a more creative idea after the initial sketch, that’s great.
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
I think it takes a certain amount of guts (or insanity?) to take photos of oneself within a minute of getting out of bed and voluntarily post them online. So let me pat myself of my brave back. Either that or I’m a slave to comedy, willing to show the world my least flattering photos, all in the name of a laugh…Might be both.
Anyway, I awoke this morning and glanced in the mirror and suddenly I saw Conan O’Brien staring back at me from the mirror. Was I still dreaming? No. I was awake, noticing that Conan and I are twins!
illustration by Mark. A Hicks
Saturday, November 15, 2014
And now for a Random Stuff moment: I have no blog titles that
start with the letter “K.” I have been blogging for nearly six years. This post
is #322. And never have I entitled a post with a word that starts with K? This
madness must stop. Yep, today’s the day to celebrate “K.” (Sounds like a Dr.
Seuss book. I’ll go with that.)
Monday, November 3, 2014
...Meeting my baby nephew on Saturday. I'd thought of him every day for eight months, thinking positive thoughts for him, dreaming of the day we would meet the newest family member. We didn't know his gender until he was born. My sister and brother-in-law wanted the surprise, and so we took to methods other than the ultrasound machine to predict his gender. I used the tried and true method of gazing at my sister's adorable bump. She was carrying high, I decided, and with complete certainty I jotted a note, predicting the baby's gender. I sealed and kept the note in my wallet for more than three months, so that upon meeting the baby, I could produce my prediction with a flourish, and graciously accept people's compliments about my genius gender-prediction techniques. Well, I was wrong. The baby was not a girl but instead, a darling little boy with a dash of brown hair. It seems my gender-predicting career may need to be rethought. I'm 0 for 1. But it's all good. I knew that we would fall madly in love with the baby and that gender would have no bearing on our love. Mom predicted the baby would be a boy because he moved so much in utero. That method of analysis did not sway me, because when my mom was pregnant with my sister, my sister behaved like a break-dancing, Rockette-aspiring, head-spinning contortionist, and she was a girl.
When I got the message that a baby boy had been born overnight I did feel surprised because I was so certain that he was a girl. But within a second my surprise turned to absolute joy and I cried with happiness on the Friday morning he was born. It was one of the happiest days I've ever had, the day I learned that I have a baby nephew, perfectly healthy and strong and full of life and hope. Despite the tough time my poor sister had while growing their baby, the little guy is a champ. He's so tiny but he already has a huge place in my heart. His clothes look like doll clothes. His face is perfectly-formed. His tiny feet are the size of my thumb. He's amazing.
My sister and brother-in-law are such a good team. They are sharing the care of this tiny wonder, and they are exhausted, but they are hopelessly in love with this little guy.
I think I need another date with my sewing machine. After meeting my adorable nephew I need to get out some fabric and make a red cape because my new calling is to be Super Aunt to this beautiful, tiny but mighty, wonderful, super boy...