Sunday, February 28, 2016

Sitcoms Say it with Silly: Flagging Down Life's Lessons in the Fast Food Lane

Tee: Merona, Target
Skirt: Merona, Target
Shoes: Ami Clubwear
Bag: Betsey Johnson, Macy's
Belt: Apt. 9, Kohl's
Sunglasses: Target

Tee: Hollister, Marshalls
Skirt: H&M
Shoes: Ami Clubwear
Bag: Betsey Johnson, Macy's
Belt: Marshalls
Sunglasses: Rampage, Boscov's

Red blouse: Lily White, Alloy
Lilac blouse: Self Esteem, J. C. Penney's
Skirt: Byer, J. C. Penney's
Shoes: Ami Clubwear
Bag: Xhilaration, Target
Sunglasses: Michaels

We can learn a lot from watching comedies, especially sitcoms.  Even Judd Apatow says so in his book Sick in the Head: Conversations about Life and Comedy

". . . most comedies  -- even if it's a Jerry Lewis movie -- start with an incredibly immature person who needs to learn a lesson." (23)  

Although Apatow is talking about full-length features, each sitcom series episode holds its own power as a microcosm of its main characters' struggles.  At the end of the half hour, the heroes and heroines have triumphed over that week's challenge, however unbelievable and zany, only to be plunged headlong into another comedic conundrum the next week.  But that's how they grow.  Just like we do.  One of my favorite sitcoms is "The Big Bang Theory," and I've always particularly liked Sheldon's Fun with Flags podcast sequence in which he presents erudite facts and anecdotes about, well, flags.  He is, in many ways, at the height of his eccentricity here, unabashedly letting his freak flag fly for the masses.  Until the day, that is, when he decides that balancing his responsibilities as a physicist, boyfriend, and podcast series author are all just too much.  So he posts his last podcast only to get a comment that goes something like this: "Sorry to see it end; I kind of liked it."  The lukewarm sentiment immediately goes to Sheldon's head, inspiring him to resuscitate his barely cold series.  Part of me laughs at him, as I and all viewers are meant to in this (albeit sweet) satire on social networking.  But another part of me knows that I would do the same thing.              
I had a similar reaction to last Sunday's episode of "Bob's Burgers."  Bob slips on some oil outside a masseur's shop and injures his shoulder.  At his doctor's urging, he tries to sue the masseur, Jairo.  But Jairo doesn't have any money and offers to heal Bob's shoulder instead.  Part of the healing process is to eliminate stress, and Jairo discovers that the biggest stress in Bob's life is coming up with the burger of the day.  So Bob stops doing it in an effort to embrace his new Zen-like existence.  Although his family and lone loyal customer Teddy miss seeing his latest kooky creation, Bob sticks to his new stress-free lifestyle.  Until wife Linda tricks him with a fake order.  At first he resists, but eventually his instinct to provide stellar customer service wins out, and he has a breakthrough.  Everyone rejoices (even Teddy, who, despite not liking the new burger, is happy to see Bob back in the game).  Everyone, of course, except Jairo.  But Bob doesn't back down, telling him that the stress of creating the burger of the day is worth the creative rush.    

So, what does this have to do with the flag thing?  I guess the lesson in both cases is that creativity is its own reward, no matter what it takes to get it out into the world.  Also, that flags are cool and beef is delicious.    

To that end, my Betsey Johnson burger bag seemed the perfect piece to include in this post.  Mostly because it has "Nice Buns" scrawled across the back, an inflammatory -- no, cheeky -- statement if ever there was one in this brave new gluten-free world.  

Sir Mix-a-Lot, I think, would approve.          

Sunday, February 21, 2016

The Acoustic Rooster Rides Again and a Not-quite Treatise on Tunes

Top: Macy's
Skirt: Marshalls
Leggings: Boscov's
Shoes: Ami Clubwear
Bag: Betsey Johnson, Macy's
Sunglasses: Michaels

Top: Chaps, Kohl's
Jeggings: Mudd, Kohl's
Boots: Charles Albert, Alloy
Bag: American Eagle, Payless
Sunglasses: Rampage, Boscov's

Top: Self Esteen, J. C. Penney's
Skirt: H&M
Shoes: Qupid, DSW
Bag: Apt. 9. Kohl's
Belt: Gifted
Scarf: Repurposed from We Love Colors tights
Sunglasses: Brigantine beach shop

Tee: Gifted
Hoodie: Mossimo, Target
Jeans: Earl Jeans, Macy's
Shoes: Fergalicious, DSW
Bag: Candie's, Kohl's
Sunglasses: Candie's, Kohl's

I've always loved music.  (There's an original statement for you; that Tote talker, she really digs those deep cuts.)  Hearing a favorite song on the radio can make my day, and I've been known to idle in the driveway with a choice one blaring (my Spidey senses indicate that I may have already blogged about this; if so, then please excuse my, ahem, broken record rambling).  Although I don't go to concerts much anymore (I prefer rocking out to CDs, having come to terms with the truth that those outings were always about the outfits), the necklaces and clothes in this week's post make me think of the Southwest and indie bands and the connection flickering, mirage-like, between them.  In particular, my memory is homing in on the introspective stylings of Jimmy Eat World.  Probably because they hail from Arizona (home of other such phenoms as the eponymous iced tea and J. C. Penney brand jeans) and because the husband and I saw them one New Year's Eve years ago, an account of which is ensconced in this blog's considerable archives.  Bright and sunny with a side of pensive, the Southwest seems as good a place as any to brew the bittersweet brain stew that is alternative music.  I think.  I can't be sure because I've never been there.  

What I am sure of is that the Mossimo hoodie in outfit number four is a touch too toasty for the desert.  It kind of looks and feels like a blanket, which is why I vowed never to wear it outside the house (despite displaying it here with a tee shirt and jeans).  Still, at $7.48 it seemed an attractive addition to my pajama wardrobe.  Tribal pattern or not, it's a fleece fashioned for northeastern nights.

One last thing.  I don't know what's up with the rooster.  Except that it's colorful and crazy and sounds good next to acoustic.  Truth be told, I don't know what's up with the acoustic, either.  But then, best not to pull at that thread.   

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Deer Valentine's Day . . .

 Frilly Fawn Necklace

Red blouse: Alloy
Yellow blouse: Bongo, Sears
Skirt: Macy's
Shoes: Bongo, Kohl's
Bag: American Eagle, Payless
Belt: Apt. 9, Kohl's
Sunglasses: Candie's, Kohl's

Sweater: Takeout, Marshalls
Skirt: Xhilaration, Target
Shoes: Madden Girl, Macy's
Bag: Princess Vera, Kohl's
Sunglasses: Micheals

Maroon top: Free People, gifted
Pink top: Liz Claiborne, Marshalls
Skirt: Marshalls
Shoes: Payless
Bag: Candie's, Kohl's
Sunglasses: Candie's, Kohl's

. . . I love you.  I love your homemade valentines and lace-edged everything and desserts doused in clouds of pink frosting.  I love your heart-print night shirts and satin-wrapped chocolates and roses wrapped in cellophane.  I love your sappy commercials and secret admirers and restaurants with couples reconnecting.  Simply put, I love your style, which is frilly yet heartfelt.  

It's no wonder, then, that I loved giving and getting valentines back in grade school.  First, there was the decorating of the special bag or box to hold them all.  You'd scour your house for stickers, buttons, ribbons, and any other odds and ends that were red, pink, or purple, then bring them to school to work your crafty magic.  Then there was the choosing of that year's valentines to distribute. For me, this meant Rainbow Brite or Strawberry Shortcake or that old perennial favorite Barbie.  Popular toy characters were always the go-to valentine designs then, just like they are now.  I suppose that's why, in the second grade, I was so surprised to get one of those die-cut valentines featuring a 1950s-looking fawn with some pun hinging on the homophones deer/dear and a heart-shaped cherry lollipop speared through the middle.  It was all orange and pink curlicues and retro, doe-eyed charm -- wordplay and a treat! -- decades before old school was trendy, and I was struck by it.  I couldn't help but reminisce about it as I worked on this week's necklaces, all of which feature a kawaii-style deer cabochon.  I love their vintage appeal and their winking rhinestones and their adorable, sunny, smiling faces.  But most of all, I love how they remind me of the magic of days gone by.        

So, move over Pepe Le Pew.  There's a new amorous animation in cahoots with Cupid.  Well, there might be.  If I make the leap to Bambi, which I'm not sure I should.  Disney might not appreciate that, and also, of course, there's the sadness.

Fortunately, the husband and I had a wonderful, not-at-all-sad, happy heart day.  We enjoyed a tasty Tex-Mex meal (because nothing says romance like refried beans), then went to see The Choice, the latest Nicholas Sparks adaptation.  It was lovely and, for the most part, true to the book, but for once I'm not going to dissect it. 

On that note, here's a bunch of feathers that once topped my Christmas tree.  The husband colorfully corralled them into the best kind of bouquet, which is to say, one that is everlasting.  Which means that it can be Valentine's Day -- instead of Christmas -- in this house all year long.         

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Hoop Memes and Football Teams

Top: J. C. Penney's
Skirt: Boscov's
Shoes: Bongo, Kohl's
Bag: Apt. 9, Kohl's
Sunglasses: Kohl's

Red top: Kohl's
Tank top: Marshalls
Skirt: J. C. Penney's
Shoes: Payless
Bag: Apt. 9, Kohl's
Belt: Apt. 9, Kohl's
Sunglasses: Candie's, Kohl's

Top: Alloy
Jeans: Bongo, Sears
Shoes: a.n.a, J. C. Penney's
Bag: Apt. 9, Kohl's
Sunglasses: J. C. Penney's

Today may be Super Bowl Sunday, but here at the Trove, the hoopla is all about the hoops.  And why not?  The brown wooden hoop pendant that serves as the focal point for all three of this week's necklaces is as rustically Midwestern as Hoosiers itself (carved girly floral motif notwithstanding) and boasts a 1970s vibe to boot (or maybe I should say to sneaker).  I gave each one its own personality by doing what I love to do best -- gluing stuff to other stuff -- to turn these bench warmers into first string (er, wire) style stars.  So, channel your inner Jackie Moon (because Semi-Pro was set in the 1970s, and who doesn't love a Will Ferrell reference?) and meet the team!

Sour Apple Sparkle

An apple a day keeps the doldrums away -- especially if it's a Granny Smith doused in glitter.  Fiona here knows how to play to win, even if the music of one Ms. Apple was harvested sometime in the 1990s.  I think that Fiona could probably hold her own in the 1970s, though, what with her super-long hair, boho clothes, and feminist lyrics.  Plus, she could belt out a badass ballad with the best of them, so we'll just let this anachronism slide, slide, slippity slide for the sake of this post, much like (necklace, not songstress) Fiona does across the basketball court.  Even if I just committed another anachronism by quoting a Coolio song from the 1990s.     

Seahorse of Course  

A horse is a horse, of course, of course, and no one can talk to a horse of course that is, of course, unless the horse is the famous  . . . Mrs. Edna.  Sweet and sugary in shades of peach, mint, and buttercream, this seahorse-studded stunner wages a wave of whimsy against the chocolatey earth of her own land-locked hoop.  Yet this pony of a paradox doesn't end there.  Despite her penchant for pastels, Mrs. Edna is no powder puff (I managed to sneak some football in there after all); she's a surf and turf toughie who plays by the rules, her only traveling from the ranch to the beach.

Boho Rainbow

And finally we have a contender that captures all the colors of a Kansas rainbow.  In a sunny salute to the Age of Aquarius, Rainbow knows how to bust a move on the court -- even if it is the mall food court (hey, she's not last in our lineup for nothing).  Fruit salad for her please, and make it a large; Emerald City sister or not, this miss is no munchkin.  More cheerleader than three-pointer powerhouse, Rainbow makes up for her lack of athletic prowess with her tenacious team spirit.  Because a diet of fruit always keeps you going.  Just ask Fiona.    

And that brings us to end of the game.  As they say in sports and accessorizing, go big or go home.  Because the bigger the hoop, the bigger the . .  well, you know.

Here's hoping your bowl was super duper.