30 January 2006

Taylor Time

We've been trying to get together with the Taylors since August and lo and behold, the stars finally aligned on Saturday. Whenever we try to hang out with our friends, Jimmy and I are often forced to reschedule or go dark because we either can't find a babysitter or are too brain dead to make a coherent plan. But when it comes to the Taylors, I can always say it's not us, it's them. For instance, on any given day, KT could either be meeting with the CEO of a German oil company or making idle chit chat with the Disney Princesses in Orlando. And even when they're home, they're not home but in Maine hanging with the cherubs and the loons. But this is why a dinner out with the Taylors is never just a dinner but an event. And Saturday night was one such event.

We met for dinner at Sibling Rivalry . I'd been there for drinks and apps with the birds but never had a full-on dinner. The restaurant is owned by brothers and chefs Bob and Dave Kinead who became renowned for their 21 Federal venture on Nantucket. At Sibling Rivalry, their menu offers dualing versions of seasonal fare. Get it? I had Chef Bob's Tuna. Yum. The motif at the restaurant and on their Web site is hilarious: two roosters facing each other appear to be squaring off for a cock fight. There have to be about a million inside jokes lurking within the decor and marketing materials. Or maybe my mind is in the gutter again.

After dinner, we shuffled over to 28 Degrees for a "nightcap" which was fun, albeit a bit fuzzy through the blur of Grey Goose martinis.

(photo: MUIs - Mamas under the Influence)

**Special thanks to Auntie Paige.

27 January 2006

Random Quizzilla

1) About how many times per day do you check your email?
Constantly. Even on the days I'm not working, I keep my laptop on my kitchen island and perform drive-by checks.

2) If you had a band, what would you name it?
Jigsaw Kathy.

3) Did you read A Million Little Pieces?
Not yet. I generally avoid Oprah's Book club selections but do have the book in my house. But after all of the public spankings that went on this week, I can't wait to read it. I just don't understand why Frey and his publishers didn't take 20 seconds to attach a disclaimer to the end of the book letting the readers know "the author has altered the time sequence of events, created composite characters, changed names or otherwise fictionalized certain details of this memoir." Such disclaimers are commonplace. It's a given writers will take authorial license to flavor up a story for the reading experience, but if you're going to fudge on hard facts, you'd better let people know. Augusten Burroughs is now being scrutinized as well. I enjoyed reading all of his books; whether they were 100 percent true or not was not a factor. I just wish they could create a genre called "fictional memoir."

4) Do you have an umbrella? What does it look like?
Right now, I am without a brelly. Two years ago, my umbrella was stolen from a yoga class. A few months ago, my favorite brelly of all time -- a retro clear bubble umbrella with yellow trim -- was decimated by a wind gust outside PF Chang's.

5)If you could be on a game show, which one would it be?
The Price is Right as it was in the 1970s.

25 January 2006

When Snowsuits Attack

I started getting Caroline and Paulie dressed to go out in the snow around 9:30 a.m. and finally got out the door at 10:15. However, five minutes into our snowy frolic, my delusions of sledding and building snowmen with the brown babies were quickly dashed. Caroline became fascinated by Vito's random piles of feces which lay like landmines in the snow. Paulie, constricted by his layered bulk of outerwear, could not take two steps without falling down. By 10:20, I knew we were short timers but when Caroline and Paulie stood side-by-side for a moment, I quickly reached for my camera...say cheese! I wasn't quick enough. Before the red-eye-delayed flash, Paulie tipped over onto his back. Trapped like a turtle, he was still saying "cheeeeese, cheeese, cheeeese." We were back inside watching Dora by 10:30.

(photo: "Take a picture of me, Mama!" Caroline taunts her brother with a dramatic reenactment.)

(photo: "Pretty sneaky, sis")

24 January 2006

All About Afros

Recipe for a perfect afternoon: A take-out feast from Tutto Italiano, vintage UB40 on the Pod, and an Afro wig inspired by Caroline's natural fro.

20 January 2006

Cream Shop Friday: The Tao of Paris

If given the chance, I am highly confident that Vito could beat Paris Hilton in a spelling bee. Everyone knows she's no smarty pants, but in a deposition document leaked to the media today, Paris reveals what a staggering moron she actually is. After spending some time in the Cream Shop today reading this complex & witty legal exchange, I honestly don't know how the woman dresses herself without tipping over. I think she may be brain damaged.

In her deposition, Paris is asked about a companion's last name and she replied: “It is, like, a weird Greek name. Like Douglas.” WHAT?

Paris on friendship:

“I meet so many people. I don’t even know some of my friends’ names.”

Paris on stalking:

“I would never say stalking. I’m not a dude. Like, I think a girl can only stalk a guy. She can’t really stalk another girl.”

Paris on world travel:

“I was in Europe the whole summer, and all there is like French — I didn’t see anything because I wasn’t in America.”

18 January 2006

Check your Chromosomes

(You, too, could be a descendent of a sadistic Irish warlord)

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Scientists in Ireland may have found the country's most fertile male, with more than 3 million men worldwide among his offspring.

The scientists, from Trinity College Dublin, have discovered that as many as one in twelve Irish men could be descended from Niall of the Nine Hostages, a 5th-century warlord who was head of the most powerful dynasty in ancient Ireland.

The research was carried out by PhD student Laoise Moore, at the Smurfit Institute of Genetics at Trinity. Moore, testing the Y chromosome which is passed on from fathers to sons, examined DNA samples from 800 males across Ireland.

The results -- which have been published in the American Journal of Human Genetics -- showed the highest concentration of related males in northwest Ireland, where one in five males had the same Y chromosome.

His team then consulted with genealogical experts who provided them with a contemporary list of people with surnames that are genealogically linked to the last known relative of the "Ui Neill" dynasty, which literally means descendants of Niall.

The results showed the new group had the same chromosome as those in the original sample, proving a link between them and the Niall descendents.

"The frequency (of the Y chromosome) was significantly higher in that genealogical group than any other group we tested," said Bradley, whose surname is also linked to the medieval warlord. Other modern surnames tracing their ancestry to Niall include Gallagher, Boyle, O'Donnell and O'Doherty.

Niall reportedly had 12 sons, many of whom became powerful Irish kings themselves. But because he lived in the 5th century, there have been doubts the king -- who is said to have brought the country's patron saint, Patrick, to Ireland -- even existed.

"Before I would have said that characters like Niall were almost mythological, like King Arthur, but this actually puts flesh on the bones," Bradley said.

When international databases were checked, the chromosome also turned up in roughly 2 percent of all male New Yorkers.

So glad I married an English-Lebanese-Italian.

15 January 2006


(photo: RIP Fantasy President David Palmer)

My adrenaline is finally subsiding after watching the back-to-back 2-hour season premieres of 24 but I will nonetheless be a hostage of Jack Bauer for the next 20 weeks. Thank God for TiVo. Within the first 10 minutes of the show on Sunday, Caroline locked herself in the bathroom and would only answer to the name "Abuela." I pressed pause and coaxed her out with a Hoodsie. Paulie was generally quiet aside from a few vocal outbursts of his latest word: PUPPY! PUPPY!PUPPY! PUPPY! ad infinitum. Last night was a little more relaxing. Paulie was snuggled with me drinking his milk and seemed as engrossed as I was. But at the next commercial break, I looked over and realized he was not drinking from his sippy cup but nibbling on a pillar candle. He had a mouth full of mulberry-scented wax. I pressed pause and dug it out.

12 January 2006

LP's Random Bird Quizilla

1) What bird received full daylight coverage on a 413 cable station?

2) Who said "You wanna know what? Chicken Butt!!!!"

3) What fast food chain hosted a Web site featuring a human donning eerie dominatrix-style suit who responds to the commands of the viewer?

4) What famous poultry personality said, "That boy's about as sharp as a bag of wet mice?"

5) Anyone want to come over to my office and plunge a stake in my heart so I can get off this conference call?

* Courtesy of LP

10 January 2006

Girl Gets Bird Flu After Kissing Chicken

Talk about an attention-grabbing headline. While the headline brings forth images of bestiality and voodoo, it's actually a heartbreaking story about an 8-year-old Turkish girl who cared for the chickens in her backyard as pets, even though the rest of her family considered them "dinner." When the birds started to get sick and die, the little girl hugged and kissed them goodbye. Why she was allowed to go near sick chickens is unclear. The next morning, her face and eyes were swollen and she had a high fever. Her father took her to a hospital, and five days later she was confirmed to have the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu. Luckily the girl responded to treatment and survived, otherwise, this would have been unpostably sad.

Years ago, there was a dead pigeon on the sidewalk in front of my house and within minutes, I had called the Animal Rescue League to report it and my neighbor had called the City's animal control services to remove it -- lest we be infected by bird germs. In the age of the bird flu, you can be sure if a glassy-eyed, bloated chicken stumbled into my yard, I'd have the entire yard quarantined. I guess it goes to show how large a role culture plays in perceiving danger, or not perceiving it at all.

Why is anyone surprised by this?

On every entertainment network or Web site today, people are calling the Swank-Lowe split "baffling" and talking about how it "came out of nowhere." I don't understand why this is shocking news..The only shock is that it didn't happen sooner. Swank married Lowe when she was a fledgling actress on "Beverly Hills 90210" when it was on its death bed. She finds herself in the company of Chad Lowe, of the 80s Lowes, who is riding high after playing HIV-positive Jesse for one season on "Life Goes On" aka "Corky." Most of the Corky actors, including Lowe, faded into obscurity. Kelly Martin (miserable Becca) showed up on ER. Patti Lupone (the intrusive mother), when she's not on Broadway, is on MSNBC yammering on about being felt up by TSA workers at airports, pissing off Code Red in ways unimaginable.

(photo: I can't believe I married this guy)

Anyway, when Swank marries Lowe, she thinks she's "marrying up," a sport in Hollywood a few rungs up from what's commonly known as "starfucking." But then! Swank's own star begins to rise. After she wins her first Oscar for "Boys Don't Cry," she thanks everyone short of the maintenance workers, but doesn't thank -- or even glance at Chad, who no longer seems like a prize but some David Spade-ish elf openly weeping into a hanky. After her second Oscar for "Million Dollar Baby," Swank drops her house-husband like a burnt chicken nugget. The same thing probably happened with Jen Garner and Scott Foley. It appears that two stars cancel each other out when one outshines the other.

**Or as Ofelia Cox duly noted, "When a lesbian marries a gay man, it's bound not to work out." I guess this is likely a better explanation as Swank was more convincing as a heterosexual male in her Boy Don't Cry role than Chad was in general. Hmmm.

06 January 2006


In a very special Pointy Universe post, SAC Pays Tribute to Lou Rawls

Being a longtime fan of Mr. Rawls, I am saddened beyond belief to learn of his passing. Mr. Rawls was a great man and one that will be sorely missed by me. Learning of his death via the radio while driving down Route 3, almost caused me to drive off the road. Thankfully, I was able to regain my composure and although still sad, I will move forward with the great memories that Lou has provided me over the years.

Mr. Rawls, Lou, was a multitalented singer, songwriter, and actor. In a career that spanned 5 decades, Mr. Rawls rose up out from under the talons of the “mighty hawk” and lived a life fairytales are written about.

His acting credits are secondary to a voice that is smoother than Courvoissier and it is this that he will be eternally remembered for. From his penning of such classics as “Lady Love”, “Charge Card Blues” and “Little Red Top” to his covers of “Send in The Clowns”, “The Candyman” and “Tobacco Road”, Lou had the ability to reach out to the other side and bridge the simple differences between men and women with the universal language of love.

So tonight, cozy up with the one you love, uncork a good wine, put a Lou Rawls cd on, preferably “Lou Rawls: Live (2 disc set), sit back and enjoy…..

As for you Lou, “See you when I git there”

Yeah Buddy-



LOS ANGELES - Lou Rawls, the velvet-voiced singer who started as a church choir boy and went on to record such classic tunes as "You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine," died Friday of lung cancer. He was 72. - AP

Our condolences to SAC who regarded Low Rawls with the admiration and man-love of a soul brother and shared his music with all of us.

04 January 2006

Random Quizzilla

1) Have you ever ordered anything from an infomercial?
Yes. Years ago when I was living by myself, I ordered a treadmill from a *very late night* infomercial. My inner idiot took over and I somehow felt the resolution to all of my problems lay in a new-found fitness regime -- one that I would certainly stick to as the treadmill's pricetag of $1200 would dictate self-discipline -- it would be "an investment." The treadmill arrived 4 days later and I realized I'd purchased a calibre of machine only necessary for people who were training for the Olympics.

I assembled it myself but the piece of crap never worked. I spent 6 hours on the phone with customer service, dismantled the shitmill (as it came to be known) then reassembled it twice. I even cancelled plans to go out that night to resolve the problem. I finally snapped and told them to come and take it away immediately before I thew it out the window and firebombed it with a propane tank. Since I'd already exhausted the "waiting for UPS" excuse at work, I couldn't wait between the slated 8-2 window. I had to lug the shitmill down two flights of stairs and leave it on the front stairs for UPS with a note and go to work.

I couldn't lift the two-ton box so I tried to 'hug' it down the front steps. My 79- year-old neighbor on the first floor heard me struggling and swearing in the stairwell and started to help me, despite my protests. She actually lifted one of the ends up and dragged it out the front door herself, but not before telling me I was built like a chicken. She also pointed out that if I hadn't been such a "birdbrain," I would have carried it down one piece at a time and packaged it on the sidewalk. It haven't even occurred to me to do so, which made me feel even more stupid than I already did for making a $1200 purchase from a late night infomercial.

2) What was the most ridiculous vanity license plate you’ve ever seen? That’s easy: "KLLR DNCR" which I presume meant “Killer Dancer.”

3) Name one song you heard today:

“Brighter than Sunshine” by Aqualung. Heard it several times this morning and I only had the radio on today for about 25 minutes. It’s actually a lovely song but I’m sure I will loathe it soon.

4) Would you consider yourself athletic?
No one would consider me athletic, least of all myself. Although, I do enjoy Wiffle ball. And playing that basketball game “Pig.”

5) Name one thing you’re looking forward to in the month of Jan: The two-hour season premiere of 24.

03 January 2006


For many of us, New Year's Eve has been a collection of common disasters: Long lines, huge cover charges, jerks, and some baffling choices of partners or dates. At some point in the 90s, we decided to pack it in, avoid anything billed as a New Year's Eve party, and use the night as an excuse to get together with friends. Since then, I've danced in a gumball machine at a Phish concert with James and Ernie, rang in the Millenium at a lake house in New Hampshire, and spent two consecutive NYEs pregnato. In recent years, we've met friends for drinks after work or a senior citizen-early dinner and then scurried through Copley Square to get home before First Night took over. And that's been really nice.

So, when Paige decided to have a house party at her swish pad in Charlestown, I was a little scared because I knew the time was just right for a ruckus. James, a rabid hater of New Year's and still exhausted from our dinner out the previous evening, decided he'd rather have a Nyquil on the rocks and sleep through it this year. After the babies went to sleep, I attached a fake hair piece from CVS to the top of my head and drove the legal speed limit up Route 3. I found a parking space right by 11 Monument Square, Jamie's old apartment, where we once danced to Snoop Dogg, Marvin Gaye and the Waterboys in the living room.

I arrived on Chestnut Street around 10 p.m., light snow was falling and all was quiet. But once I was buzzed in the front door, I was almost knocked over by the bassline of "OPP" blaring from the third floor. I spotted Di, Paige, Annie and Keri tarted up gorgeously and the Brownguy looking exceptionally dapper. Brownman was mixing us some orange sodies. Paige was swirling around the kitchen in her taffeta skirt. For a moment, I viewed the scene from a distance hoping it's something I'll see many more times in the coming years -- fancy and happy.

Just when the vibe couldn't get better, our favorite swarthy greek made a grand, swarthy entrance. I only met Nick once when Nicola and I -- flagrant MUIs (mamas under the influence) -- perpetrated an unsolicited fix-up that went awry at LP's marathon fundraiser. Nevertheless, we're forever connected through a facial-cheek grazing incident; a moment, in its infinite brevity, that may revolutionize the international sign for swarthy -- should such a sign exist.

So, there was dancing and much rejoicing. Annie and I discovered that Paige's fridge was chock full of champagne at 11:50. Paige looked at us with an expression that said "bust those bitches open."

LP and WMD and his pals arrived, and things got absolutely bubbly....for awhile. Then the dancing became straight-up degenerative. My final memory of night was Paige wearing my hair piece.

The only downside of the evening, aside from my taking my nylons off in the dining room and throwing them into the fireplace, is that I forgot to bring my camera. Please share images so we can better illustrate this fabulous night! And thanks, Paige, for one of the MOST effervesent NYE parties in recent memory. It's going in the book!