Archive | March, 2010

Cupcake pandamonium!

31 Mar

Quick, give me an excuse to make these!

My makeup experience and experiment

31 Mar

I started wearing makeup when I was a senior in high school. Up until then, I never saw the need. In fact, I was strongly against it. As a high school junior I played a character in a play who wore a lot of makeup to cover up her insecurities. Even then I refused to wear anything heavy. For my junior prom my mom begged me to try something. So I bought sparkly nude eyeshadow and clear lip gloss. I don’t know why I hated makeup so much. I guess it was a combination of things. For one, there is this picture of me as a first grader wearing blue eyeshadow and bright pink lipstick. It was not exactly flattering. Not to mention all the horrible bouts with lipstick and bright shadow during dance recitals when I was young. I never got the impression that makeup could make me look like anything more than a clown.

There was this girl in my high school class who caked on layers of foundation and eyeliner every morning. Except she was running late one day and decided to leave the house without any makeup on. The entire day the entire school gave her “Dear god, what happened to you?!” looks. She never went without makeup after that. I didn’t want to become one of those people that couldn’t leave the house without her “face” on.

Then came senior portrait day. I got my hair cut and colored the day before. My stylist just happened to be a Mary Kay consultant and convinced me to get a makeover. She sat me down and showed me the correct way to put on foundation, eyeliner, and shadow (that wasn’t electric blue). I only had on a tiny bit of foundation and concealer, some blue liner and brown shadow, but the difference was astounding. I remember going to the grocery stores afterward and feeling like a million bucks. I realized I didn’t need makeup to make myself feel like myself, but it sure made me feel better.

Once I crossed over to the other side, there was no going back. I started building my collection. The funny thing is, to this day I don’t wear the types of makeup that most women who don’t like makeup wear–foundation, lip color, and mascara. Foundation just seems like a drag to apply and it always makes you look too white in photographs. I got used to not wearing lip color since I played flute often and never got in the habit of putting anything on but lip balm. And mascara–well, that’s just a pain in the butt to take off.

So eyeshadow became my thing. I think it’s the painter in me. My current apartment doesn’t have room to set up my painting supplies, so I’ve take to using my eyes as a canvas. I used to stick with browns and greys and the occasional light turquoise when I was feeling adventurous. But now that I own two Coastal Scents 88 color palettes, the sky is the limit (or not, I’ve rocked a sky blue look recently.)

Some women don’t put on makeup on the days they aren’t planning to leave the house. Those days are my experimenting days. I’ve done many crazy looks that I wouldn’t necessarily wear in public. If I want to test it out I go downstairs to get the mail and see if anyone gives me any weird stares.

My latest experiment was a Tim Burton look by Youtube makeup guru Michelle Phan. At first it seemed too dark for everyday wear, but it passed the mailbox test, so I went to dinner in it. I’m still not entirely convinced it’s a good day look, but I’d consider trying it again for evening.

(My camera really sucks at capturing eyeshadow. The look was more black than purple-looking).

I’ve definitely become more adventurous with my colors. I even wore a rainbow look. Next time I decide to bust that one out I’ll try to get some photographic evidence–if my new camera will cooperate.

And for the record, I occasionally leave my apartment without my “eyes” on–but only to go to the gym.

Walking blind

30 Mar


I was driving home from Trader Joe’s this afternoon when I saw a blind woman on the sidewalk. I could tell she was thinking about crossing the street. She had on thick glasses and was feeling around with her white cane. I was pretty sure she had no idea what color the light was. My suspicions were confirmed when she stepped out in front of my car the minute my light turned green. Luckily I was keeping an eye on her so I didn’t move, but I’m not so sure an impatient cab driver would have done the same. The incident got me thinking–how are blind people in Chicago supposed to know when to cross the street? In some cities like DC they have audio walk signs that either make a beeping noise or say “Don’t walk.” I wonder if anyone has made a push for that in Chicago. It probably got put on the bottom of the priority list since it wouldn’t create any revenue (like a traffic camera does.)

I’ve seen quite a few blind people walking about the city though. I saw one the other day in the library with his service dog. It seemed like an odd place for a visually-impaired person to be until I noticed he was checking out audio books. I was standing in a line of 20 people ready to check out but the blind guy’s service dog took him right to the front. I could hear some people in front of me sigh, but you can’t really complain too much. He has to go through life without being able to see anything, the least he should get is a front of the line at the library pass! And maybe some audio walk signs…eventually.

Panda butt

28 Mar

Nothing is worse than a new blog that is quickly abandoned. So until I can come up with something awesome to write, enjoy this picture of a baby panda butt.

Baby panda butt

You’re welcome.

Are you in the zone?

25 Mar

There’s this older gentlemen who lives on my floor in my building. Every time I ride the elevator with him it’s a hoot.

Today I had my laundry bag in my hand as I held the door for him to get on. He was dressed for the gym, complete with a sweatband on his head. “Are you in the zone?” he asked me. I quickly looked down to see if I was wearing an Autozone or Discovery Zone T-shirt, never mind the fact that I don’t own either one. “I’m sorry?” I asked him. “Laundry!” he said. “I’ve got about five loads you can chew on.” I have absolutely no idea what he meant by that. He continued to happily mutter nonsense about laundry until I got off and told him to have a nice day.

But that doesn’t compare to an interaction with him I had around this time last year. Spring had sprung and the weather was characteristically un-Chicago. “It’s so nice out there!” he commented to my boyfriend and me. “I just want to go outside, take off all my clothes, and roll around in the grass!” We weren’t quite sure what to say to that, so we smiled. To this day, every time we see a nice grassy hill we joke about how much the old guy from our building would love it.

Census says…

25 Mar

Let me begin by saying I’m a fan of the Census. As a trained journalist, I enjoy statistics and I hear (over and over again on the commercials) that necessary funding for schools and such depends on everyone responding. So I responded. And at this point I can’t imagine there being anyone out there that is unaware that the Census is going on.

It started with the Superbowl commercial. Nevermind the fact that the government spent an obscene amount of money on the ad that didn’t even make sense, at least it got people thinking about it. Then came the TV commercials. And the advertisements near bus stops. I couldn’t wait for my form to arrive. But before it did I received a letter in the mail informing me that my form was about to arrive. Now I’m not usually one to go on about government spending, but I couldn’t believe this. First the Superbowl commercial, now the postage to send every household in America a letter? I thought it would stop there. But no, I have received four–four!–postcards since receiving my official form reminding me that I am legally obligated to mail back my form. And I’m sure there will be more postcards to come. Ridiculous.

I was at the library today when I saw a sign advertising a workshop for census form questions. The first time I saw the sign was before I received my form and I got a little worried. Just how complicated is the form going to be? I wondered. The library also offers tax help, is it going to be that bad? And then I finally got my form and was a bit disappointed. This is the government’s chance to ask its people anything it wants, and all it wanted was my name, age, race, and marital status. I guess if the form were any longer people would get upset and not send it back, but come on! Think of all the information we could obtain and the arguments we could solve! Do more Americans like their toilet paper rolled under or over? How many hours of sleep does the average person get? (Ok, I’m sure we could come up with better questions than those, apparently before I go to bed all I can think about it toilet paper and sleep). Could you imagine Family Feud: Census Edition? “We surveyed 300 million Americans…”

How do I get on the question-forming committee for the 2020 Census?

“Bonjourno!”

24 Mar

I was trying to be clever with my blog name. I was blessed with a French name, but I don’t speak a lick of French. (I’m not in a rush to learn either, the crazy pronunciation turns me off.)  I was trying to make a play off rendezvous and hopefully didn’t come up with something offensive. You never know what might happen when an American dabbles in a foreign language.

First posts are always kind of awkward. I never know whether to jump right in or give a lame “Welcome to my blog.” Consider this both.