Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Career Crisis Averted


A friend and colleague is having a bit of a career crisis. He sat and talked me through it during lunch yesterday. What I didn't realize was the extent to which the crisis held him. Today, he announced that he went on to a web site to complete a career assessment. It didn't seem too complicated ... 60 questions. And the result was several career suggestions based on the responses and the commitment it would take to school or training would be necessary to pursue it. In other words, the first suggestion was based on the notion that he would not go to school or train to become it. He would just be it. And naturally, other suggestions were based on more schooling or training. He wasn't going to admit to anyone what he could do right now, as right now had him working as a beautician! Yes, I sat a across from a 50 year old, bald, University of Chicago graduate who found his way into a beauty parlor job on a self-help career site.

Of course I had to do it too! And he was certain that my profession would be fabulous compared to what was served up to him (yeah, he's a little down right now). And it was! Sixty questions and the recommendation for me was MODEL. Well, of course I can be a model. And I can date Leonardo DeCaprio. And I can walk for Karl Lagerfeld. And, oh, the wonderful things that I can do as a model. I suppose that it's hard to see it on the screen shot, but it really does say that in the box.

And if I'm willing to go back to school and/or train? Clergy. Sinner to saint baby. Oh dear, which shall I choose?

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Shaun Cassidy and a Baseball Jacket

Elle March 2014
Shaun Cassidy
When I turned the page and saw this? I remembered Shaun Cassidy in his Da Doo Ron Ron blue satin baseball jacket that I was obsessed with at 14. David, his step-brother, my first pop star love of my life, was long gone when Shaun hit my must-see TV with his show, The Hardy Boys. I was a freshman in high school; though, I had moved on to a more sophisticated listening rotation: The Beatles, Led Zepplin, Rolling Stones, Shaun brought me back to girl giggledom, true love, and the want of a satin baseball jacket like the one that he wore more than anything that I've ever wanted in this life.

When I heard that he was playing Chicago, I had to go. My best friend and partner in crime stood in line at Sears for hours to buy tickets. I'm not sure how we even got there as neither of us drove yet. And the mall wasn't on a train or bus line. Maybe my mom dropped us off, and agreed to come back in a couple of hours. Obviously, we didn't have cell phones. God how were we able to manage all of that without smart phones and travel managers and just our teenagery brains? But I digress ... we met a girl in line from our high school. A senior girl. A burn-out. What was she doing in line for tickets to see Shaun Cassidy? God only knows. She was with her mom, and we hatched a plan to all go together with her mom driving us to the Amphitheater ... where I had seen Emerson, Lake, and Palmer AND Rod Stewart. What a detour this was going to be.

And what would I wear? I knew that Shaun would pick me out in the crowd and sing to me. Oh, how his hair feathered ... so dreamy. I knew what I needed: a satin baseball jacket. How do I get my hands on one of those, I wondered. We weren't really the type of family that went to the mall on a regular basis to buy clothes. I thought that I had seen one at The Limited, but I didn't have any money; well, not that kind of money. And my mom certainly wasn't going to finance my scheme to go to the store and actually buy an outfit to wear to the concert. Aha! But she would 'make' me something. In her Iowa-ness, and out of necessity, she would often sew me up what I had in mind. She was more than willing to trudge off to Vogue Fabrics to see what we could come up with there.

Naturally, being ahead of the curve (I know, you wouldn't be able to tell from what was my uniform to school of the day: Levis and a band t-shirt from Hegewisch Records. I wore the hell out of my Bad Co. t-shirt), we couldn't find a 'baseball' jacket pattern. But I was always flexible in my grand designs. I was always willing to take a different approach. We found a Vogue pattern for a jacket. It had dolmen sleeves and was really quite 'designerly,' but I thought that it could work. I picked out a beautiful baby blue satin to match what I had seen him wear. One major roadblock was that we couldn't find the material that would make the hem of the jacket. What would you call it ... the elastic band that you find on baseball jackets? Not to worry, mom had a plan. And it worked out as far as I was concerned. Oh, god how I love satin. It was gorgeous. And it was almost exactly what I wanted.

For the day of the concert, I was very bold. I didn't wear anything under my jacket (my bra, of course!). Our tickets were behind the stage, so I mostly saw Shaun's derriere, which wasn't bad in my estimation. I never got to see David Cassidy in concert, so I think that I took out all of that waiting and wanting on this one shot to see one of the those boys with the perfectly feathered hair and sweet smiles. I was very deliberately thinking, I could just jump off of this balcony. I could do it. I might break my leg, but that would heal. And for most of the concert, that is what I did ... schemed. It didn't really matter that I wasn't going to actually do it. The thought of it alone was quite satisfying. And good thing because many things that I've thought would be a good idea was really much better left to my imagination.

Da Doo Ron Ron.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Jack White Gives A Peek: High Ball Stepper

Jack White's "BlunderBuss," his first solo album, has been one of my favorite albums in the last couple of years. I can hardly wait to find what comes along with this sound.