While I know it is usually you who expresses gratitude to me, for bringing such light and laughter to your dreary lives [filled with not loving chipmunks and eating calorie-conscious meals], let us take this time to acknowledge my appreciation for all you do to appease me, especially on my birthday.
To my husband, Peppermeister, with your unparalleled taste in spouses: You took it upon yourself to hire a man to put us in a basket tied to a balloon as a “gift.” Even though they have absolutely no control over where the basket will go, or land, I know this is your way of saying that our love will forever defy the odds. And not at all that you want to kill me.
To my wonderful mother, Babs, who finally got it right with her third child: You made a beautiful photo album, capturing the last 30 29+ years of my enviable life, because you felt visitors were not jealous enough of my current coffee table book, ThePop-Up Book of Phobias. Without your loving and watchful eye, these visitors might have left my home feeling like they had the upper hand – all because I serve White Castle and haven’t cleaned behind the TV in two years!
To my genius father who still has all of his hair: I am willing to overlook those disturbing quotes from my college application essay that you included in the above album. I know that dredging up embarrassing memories is your way of trying to make your other children feel a little better about being constantly overlooked. You always try to be fair that way, even though it’s hopeless.
To my insane triathlon-competing sister: Thank you for wearing the dress I loaned you four months ago to my birthday dinner; you looked really great in it. It’s clear you wanted everyone to see what impeccable style I have, and I’m not jealous at all. But you should know that that one will be out of fashion soon, so you should just give it back. I wouldn’t want you to embarrass yourself.
To my adorable niece and nephew, who take after their aunt in looks: Thank you for giving me hope that someone I know will eventually join a glee club based on his top-notch jazz hands, thus exponentially increasing my chances of meeting Second Husband, Darren Criss. Also thank you for believing I’m famous because I refer to my “blog” as “a super popular website.”
To my completely normal and nice in-laws: I’m forever delighted by the ability of our families to get together without fights, tears or backhanded compliments. It’s like I didn’t even steal your only son away from you. Oh and that gift card is pretty sweet, too. Keep those coming.
To my best friend, Jenn: No one gets me like you do. Except for that guy who makes my egg sandwiches and puts way more cheese on them than is remotely appropriate. No, no one gets me like you do. And no one gets me flowers except you, either. Actually, that’s kind of a problem. Let’s talk about how to fix that the next time we get together.
I love that you love me, family and friends. Clearly loving me so much has made all of you better people.
But don’t worry about thanking me for that yet. Christmas is just around the corner.
Love always, or until all that champagne you got me runs out,
What’s the most guilty pleasure-ful gift you’ve ever gotten?
Last week, Peppermeister (my husband) pointed out that Comcast cable’s OnDemand feature (where you can watch movies and TV shows, well, on demand) added something called XFINITY Streampix. Under that category, they added the first two seasons of Dawson’s Creek.
Remember Dawson’s Creek? “I don’t wanna wait…”, the Joey-Dawson-Pacey love triangle, the intense vocabulary, and the dad in jail? Right. That’s the one.
When I was 16, I was obsessed with Dawson’s Creek. They filmed it in Wilmington, North Carolina, about a 12-hour drive from where I grew up in northern(ish) New Jersey. Thanks to my habit of trolling America Online chat rooms, I found out how to contact the casting agency and become an extra.
In case you don’t know – anyone can be an extra. I mean, anyone. Even nerdy 16-year-olds with zero acting experience or ability. Especially when it’s a show’s first season and they film in a quiet town in North Carolina (though it’s worth noting that Wilmington is home to Screen Gems Studios, the largest domestic television and movie production facility outside of California).
Babs (my mom), the woman who taught me everything I know about guilty pleasures, agreed to take a 5-day trip down to Wilmington in September of 1998, and I experienced life as an extra for the first time. Though it’s mostly downtime with a bizarre subculture of working ‘background actors,’ we had so much fun that we made the same trip several more times over the next two years. During what should have been my first semester of college, I worked as a full-time extra. (I was going to be a screenwriter. To heck with higher education!)
I don’t own Dawson’s Creek on DVD, so Peppermeister had never seen my network TV debut. For the first time in 10 years, thanks to Comcast, we sat down this weekend and watched my key scenes.
In the one you’re about to see, I had to diligently prepare; I had finally scored a coveted classroom seat, and would be pretending to take a driver’s permit exam. Pacey (Joshua Jackson) was on edge, having just gotten into another argument with his insensitive cop father. He’d already failed this test once. Not to mention his girlfriend, Andie, who was in the nuthouse and still hadn’t called. My character, on the other hand, felt adequately prepared for the exam, but was also preoccupied – I’d recently caught my father cheating on my mother, who certainly didn’t deserve it after 15 years of working the late shift at the Snakeskin diner. I hadn’t told anyone, not even my best friend, Ashley Katsopolis. Can you sense the angst?
Did I just blow your mind? And guess what? After carefully tallying up all of my shining onscreen moments, I still have 14 minutes and 23 seconds of fame left!
Have you had your 15 minutes of fame? Close encounters of the celebrity kind? I can’t wait to hear. I live for this shiz.
Whoever said bloggers were lame, basement-dwellers who lack the talent of ‘real’ writers has never met the awesome array of bloggers I have via WordPress. I’m continually amazed by the gifts and goodness they possess.
So I guess in some ways I wasn’t surprised to receive this text from JM Randolph (Accidental Stepmom) last Thursday morning:
Totally last minute. CC can’t come to my opening nite show. I only got 1 ticket- do you want it? 6:45 curtain.
The show JM was referring to was Jesus Christ Superstar, which opened on Broadway March 22nd. Thanks to JM’s gig doing sound for theater, I just scored an invite to opening night – on Broadway! I responded accordingly:
Hi JM! I just saw this! Is it too late to say hell yes!?
And so it was. We agreed to meet at 6:30 in front of the theater. I went to Kohl’s on my lunch break and picked up two new blazers because, of course, nothing in my closet was right. I settled on all black: black stretch pants, black calf-high boots, a black high-necked shirt with a sheer overlay on front, and a black blazer with similar sheer trim along the bottom.
I lightened things up with my wedding-day earrings, which are getting a lot of play lately:
I boarded the 4:23 NJ Transit train, excited as could be. JM and I met for the first time in January, before I saw another Broadway show, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. I was really looking forward to seeing her again. From reading JM’s blog, it’s obvious she’s smart, witty and completely badass. I expected to meet a tough, somewhat no-nonsense chick. Which intimidated the hell out of me. Oh, how wrong I was! JM is warm, welcoming and lovely. And gorgeous! Not I’m going to wear leather pants to kick your butt gorgeous, but Princess Bride gorgeous.
It was only on the train, nearly to Penn Station, that I saw an earlier text from JM (I’d been having battery issues with my phone all day):
oh and dress semi-fab. you will need a pic of yourself on the red carpet.
Red carpet?! Moi?! My honest-to-goodness first thought was: I think my stretch pants are see-through! I was willing to accept that any pictures of me would be less than flattering, but transparent pants was where I drew the line. It was akin to stepping out of a limo with no underwear.
I quickly texted JM:
Oh holy shoot. For some reason I just saw your text about the red carpet. I did buy a new cute blazer on my lunch break BC that’s how I roll LOL but I don’t think it qualifies as fab?!?!?!?!
JM assured me it was no big deal, and that at least one person would be in sweatpants. I couldn’t tell if I’d just gotten myself out of it.
It was a gorgeous day for March, 75 degrees and sunny, and Manhattan was absolutely packed. It took me 40 minutes to work my way through the throngs of people to Neil Simon Theatre (I always prefer to walk to the theater district versus taking the subway or a cab from Penn Station, even though it’s at least a mile). I wasn’t sure I’d ever seen Times Square so jammed up.
There was also a huge crowd in front of the theater, though I couldn’t see who was on the red carpet. Several skeletal women passed by me in bright, silk dresses; it was clear they’d spent the entire day getting ready. My heart was in my throat at the prospect of sharing any kind of floor space with Broadway elite. I didn’t know the names of these producers and directors. I wouldn’t know Edward Albee if I tripped over him (just to make this reference I had to Google ‘living playwrights’).
When JM met me outside and handed me a ticket, I followed her lead. Okay, good, we weren’t headed towards the flash bulbs and cheers. Instead, we walked in through a side door. Hallelujah, I was spared! Under different circumstances, I would have been disappointed. But not that night. Not in see-through pants.
JM showed me to her motherboard, which was on a platform at the back of the orchestra section. She introduced me to some of her colleagues and it was clear they all adored her (and vice versa). Being part of the in crowd really is all it’s cracked up to be, Chipmunks.
I told JM I was learning about the inner workings of Broadway from one of my new favorite shows, Smash. She said they do actually do workshops like the one currently depicted on the show, confirming my suspicion that I can learn everything I need to know from TV. She paused.
“You do have crazy eyes.”
I laughed. I recently wrote a post about my crazy eyes; in it I described my giant pupils. Being in a dark theater surely made them noteworthy.
“I know,” I replied. “Everyone thinks I’m high all the time. …I wish.”
“Do they even need to dilate your pupils when you go to the eye doctor?” she asked with a good-natured smile.
Because the show was soon starting, I bid a temporary goodbye to JM and found my seat in the center of the balcony section. I smiled to myself when I saw the skinny-minnie-silk-dress girls in seats right by me. Ah, opening night on Broadway, what a great equalizer you are! I felt smug until I realized my see-through-panted butt could still barely fit in the wee Broadway seats (despite, and let me pause to brag for the first time here, a significant weight loss in the past year).
The audience was extremely enthusiastic, and while I’d never seen the play before, I was blown away by the production value and, most of all, the voices of the cast. (I bet some of that can be attributed to JM!) Andrew Lloyd Webber came out during the curtain call, and the standing ovation was the longest I’d ever taken part in.
I didn’t linger because I had to catch my train home, but hoped I managed to convey my gratitude and enthusiasm to JM before dashing. (In the end, I missed my connecting train -for the first time in my life- because I was too busy texting about my fun night out!)
Hey, we can still pretend I shared the spotlight with the likes of Megan Hilty (from Smash) and Andrew Lloyd Webber:
Hey, wait a second, Lisa Lampanelli…
…That dress looks familiar…
I’m so ahead of my time*! Maybe see-through pants will be in four years from now! Damn. I guess I should have walked that carpet.
*I bought this dress for $25 from Target 4 years ago. I cannot believe it’s on the red carpet right now.
Photo credit (marquis and red carpet pictures): broadwayworld.com.
I’d like to talk to you a little bit about my best friend, Byronic Man. I know we’re best friends because he shares all of his deepest, darkest secrets with me*, and when I’m hysterically laughing at his every blog post, I know he was only so funny just to make me guffaw.
My B.F.F. Byronic Man has even sent me a SCANDALOUS GoGuiltyPleasures slap bracelet picture that features his ENTIRE, HANDSOME mug – AND HE’S LETTING ME POST IT! You are really going to want to stay tuned for the big reveal. Here’s a sneak peek:
In all seriousness, Byronic Man is one of the funniest, most supportive bloggers I’ve ‘met’ on WordPress. I promise you he is the real-deal, and I hope this personal endorsement on my silly little blog does not detract from his genuine comedy genius.
I’m pretty sure if you don’t subscribe to his blog, your life will remain a dreary, sunless, chipmunk-free march to the grave.
Er, Happy Tuesday!
*He even told me how he really feels about his wife**.
Are you ready for this, celebratory chipmunks?! These were taken in our yard, and yes, we have a giant flag painted on a board on the back fence, courtesy of the original homeowners. (We’re thinking of adding flags from around the world, whaddya think?)
Prepare yourselves for hunk-itude:
And my personal favorite:
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
How are you celebrating (besides putting your supermodel dog in a gold bow tie? Oh wait, is that just me?)? Any resolutions?
All right. Cut it out. That wasn’t the funny part.
I was recently interviewed for Girl on the Contrary’s “Interviews with Celebrities” feature, and she posted the interview today. Check it out here! But only if you like things like smiling, rainbows and music. Or if you’ve been dying to know my thoughts on Bret Michaels. Either or.
Hubster’s Peppermeister blog was Freshly Pressed (featured on the homepage of WordPress) today! I’m doing a mediocre job pretending not to be jealous that he was Freshly Pressed so shortly after starting a blog. You can read his now-famous post here.