Thursday, February 25, 2010

Ladies and gentlemen....introducing the poster child for classlessness....JOHN MAYER!

Ok, you knew I had to talk about this creep. He may be able to play the guitar and sing (and that is questionable), but class, he AIN'T GOT! Now, I know this interview was a while ago...but really dude? You are going to talk to about two beautiful actresses and your sex life with them to a national media outlet. It is NOT OKAY. If you live under a rock or just don't pay attention, here is the gist. John Mayer was doing an interview with Playboy magazine and talked about his sex life with both Jennifer Aniston and Jessica Simpson. Now, I know that it is Playboy, but honestly, Playboy has more class than John Mayer. Gentlemen, really...classy gentlemen don't kiss and tell, especially not OVER twitter, facebook, texts from last night or the national media. And if it a woman that you really like, you shouldn't even share it over beers with your buddies.

And ladies, same goes for you...Really, Courtney Love, do we need to have a naked picture of you on twitter? Ladies, please don't share the intimate details of your sex life with everyone on twitter, facebook and whatever other public arena you like to use. It is just not classy at all. Now, I understand if you want to chat it up with your girlfriends about your sex life. I get it, trust me Smiles and the redhead know plenty about my various trysts, but keep that chatter between you and your besties and leave everyone else out. And for those of you looking to get jobs in the future, you probably don't want that hanging out in cyberspace, TRUST ME, future employers will find it.

And I am not telling you to go all prude and prissy, like we were taught we were supposed to be (or least I was, HEY I am from Nebraska, one of the reddest states in the whole US)...but what you do behind closed doors with your husband/wife, boyfriend/girlfriend OR date for the night, is your business! Never has been my place to judge anyone's actions, decisions or life choices, as far as I am concerned, only one person gets to do that and HE lives upstairs. Just don't broadcast those decisions out for everyone. What if your grandmother saw that, would she be proud? I doubt it.

So after having recently watched the movie, Coco Before Chanel, I have decided that we are starting a new me the woman was an icon and a bastion of class and style. She started her own fashion label in Paris when women were only supposed to be seen, not heard and women were especially not allowed to own their own business. So when presented with a situation whether it be fashion or social, ask yourself, What would Coco do? OK, try it this weekend! I certainly will I have lots of opportunities.

Ladies and gentlemen have a fabulous weekend. Look for me at the BEP Concert on Saturday night. Next week I am headed to Vegas, I am thinking I need an on location post!

Cheers and CIAO BELLAS.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Ladies and Gentlemen...really? Don't be a sore loser!

Ok, I have to say it, not matter which side of the Evan Lysacek vs. Evgeni Plushenko men's figure skating controversy that you sit on, I have never seen such a SORE loser in my whole life as I have seen in Plushenko. Really, dude? I just read that he awarded himself a PLATINUM medal on his website since he feels he is the real champion. I have to say that is the ultimate of classlessness! And I watched both performances and honestly I could have gone either way, they both had great performances. So Plushenko, hear me now, let it GO! And Elvis Stojko chiming in one side was very unclassy as well.

So it got me to thinking about the Friends episode where Joey is nominated for a "Soapie" as Drake Ramoray on Days of Our Lives and Rachel tells him that he has to practice how to react if he loses. And then he does lose, and he is visibility angry on the camera and steals the trophy from another actress who is on his show. Funny episode, of course...And it is clever the way that present the episode as a lesson on how not to act.

Reminds me of another story that I heard over the weekend about Andy Roddick in the Italian Open in 2005. Roddick was leading the match 5-3 in the second set and had triple match point against Verdasco. Verdasco's serve was called out and Roddick had won the match. Verdasco had approached the net to shake his hand. Roddick called the line judge over to show a dent in the clay where it clearly showed that Verdasco's ball had landed on the line and his serve was in. The line judge agreed and the match was resumed. Roddick went on to lose the match. Many of you may have heard the story but it was the first time that I heard it and wanted to repeat it as a true act of class in a competition.

Ladies and gentlemen, there will be many times in your life, whether in a competition, an election or for an award, where you will be up against others, whether they are your friends or not. And guess what, you might not win. And someone else may win, even if you think are you more deserving. There may even have been a scoring mistake. But the best way to handle any of it is to be poised and classy. As hard as it may be, have some grace and congratulate the winner. Take your 2nd place prize (or 3rd) and excuse yourself. If you need to be angry or sad, do it on your own time OR vent to family and friends later. Don't start an investigation into the judging OR reward yourself a more deserving prize. Really, is it worth it? It makes you look like an idiot.

It seems like this subject should be something that everyone understands but wow...after last week's ice skating drama, I thought it necessary to say something. Being such a college sports fan, I have always been impressed by those coaches that have class when they lose (and especially those tough games where the officiating may have been questionable), they go congratulate the other team and in press conferences say classy things about the other team and coach. It takes more character to admit when you didn't play your best game than it does to put the other team down.

So ladies and gentlemen, you don't get to stop being classy in a competition! In fact, it usually requires more class. Cheers and CIAO BELLAS!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Another Valentine's Day is OVER!

Well, ladies, did you survive? Isn't it amazing how a stoopid holiday can make you crazy? So after surviving our Anti-Valentine's Day pub crawl, I have a few observations from this holiday. First, let me say, LADIES, nice work on Saturday night. I didn't find too many ladies seriously don'ts in all 4 bars I was in. Well, other than the chick was throwing up in the bar bathroom at 8 PM in the evening. Seemed a bit early to be doing that (and a bit disgusting to ever do it). Life is a marathon not a sprint! Second, let me give a shout out to the ladies and gentlemen that participated in our pub crawl and once again kept it classy. We had a great time, were out for like 7 hours, no one was inappropriate or obnoxious and not a single one passed out or threw up. And safety first, everyone took cabs and the suburbanites stayed my condo. All in all, a great night!

So, let's discuss this holiday...Valentine's Day. Speaking from someone who was broken up with on V day last year, it is not my favorite holiday. On a side note, I bought him an iPOD as a V Day gift last year, so I sold it on eBay this year! I started to think about why men get so weird on and around Valentine's Day. In fact, I saw Valentine's Day the movie this past weekend (cute movie, yes predictable and bit sappy, but hey...oh I am SOOOO Jessica Biel in that film) but anyway, Jamie Foxx said in the movie that he had do downplay his "playerness" from January to St. Patrick's Day so that he wasn't required to spend a lot of money on V Day. So one of my guy friends offered up the opinion that there is a lot of pressure put on men to do the right thing for Valentine's Day. He has to be romantic...So much thought goes into the card, and the gift and dinner, etc. And if you have only been dating for a few months, he has to plan something that isn't too suggestive or is just enough. And if you have been dating for a while, there is possibly the pressure of an engagement ring. It just seems silly. When did it all become such a game?

Although I feel like a broken record because I say this all the time, but ladies and gentlemen seriously, the important people in your life should feel loved everyday of the year, it shouldn't require some big romantic gesture to make them feel loved. And ladies, give your guy a break, don't expect him to drop $1000 on Valentine's Day for dinner ($300), flowers ($100), candy ($100) and a gift...And maybe if you want, next year, tell him that you are in charge of the plans for the holiday. Give him a break! And you know I don't give you gentlemen a break very often, so take it now!

Ladies seriously, don't put a lot of stock in a silly holiday, if you know that your man loves you, don't expect extra gifts and flowers on February 14th, you should honestly feel very blessed because you know he loves you. Not everyone gets something like that! HECK, I have been divorced for almost 10 years and I have had EXACTLY three boyfriends in that time, one that lasted 2 1/2 years, one that lasted 6 months and one that lasted 6 weeks. I would love to know that I had a man that loved me! ;) Still waiting for Jason Statham to realize I am available.

Cheers and CIAO BELLAS!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

ALAS! Chivalry is not dead...

It may just be hibernating for some people! So, we knew it was true that we could not get through the month of February without some type of snow storm. And yes, in Chicago, it did hit with a vengeance on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week. In the city, I believe we got at least a foot of snow, if not more. And yes, I know, it is SUBSTANTIALLY less than what our friends on the East Coast have received...70 inches, but it was enough to make driving a pain in the bootie.

So yesterday, I had to teach an early class, knowing that my car is HORRIBLE and yes I do mean REAR WHEEL DRIVE HORRIBLE in the snow, I went out the night before to shovel and clean my car off, thinking this would help me in the AM. NOT! We got another 6-8 inches overnight, so I took another 20 minutes to shovel and clean off my car. I got settled into the vehicle and basically pulled forward and got my car stuck, I mean it was not going anywhere in the snow. SO, my downstairs neighbor was walking his dogs, and offered to push me. He was working so hard to me out. And then another man came out of his building, dressed for work and started to help as well. These poor men worked their butts off to get my STOOPID car out of the alley. It took two guys, three of us shoveling and backing down the alley to get my car out. WOW! I was amazed at how generous these men were in helping me. They were so determined, I was ready to give up...but the guys says NO, we will get you out. I did email and thank my downstairs neighbor, but I don't know who else helped me, so DUDE living two buildings over...THANK YOU!

PART DEUX...last night, I was going to have dinner with some friends in the burbs and the same EXACT thing happened. Tires are spinning, blah, blah...this man comes out of his condo basically hunched over because his back hurt so bad from shoveling his parking lot, but still offers to help me. While he is inside getting salt, another neighbor, a female, goes to get her shovel offering to help. My poor hunched over neighbor puts the salt under my tires and pushes me out. LORD HAVE MERCY! So once again, THANK YOU TO MY NEIGHBORS, I don't know your names, but bless you for helping me.

You know living in a city the size of Chicago, many times people like to remain anonymous, they go about their business, don't make personal connections and don't offer to help when needed. I was so pleased and felt so blessed to know that my neighbors were willing to help me out of a tough spot yesterday. And not just the guys, because I know you gentlemen sometimes still like to help the SINGLE damsel in distress. But the woman in the next building could have simply gone into her condo without offering to help.

In today's age of social networking, emailing, texting...on and on, as I have said in previous blog posts, we are creating humans that don't know how to connect with other each. It was such a nice departure yesterday to see people helping others out! So ladies and gentlemen seriously, pay it forward, help someone out, even if it is as small as holding the door open for someone or letting someone cut in line at the grocery store who has 2 items and you have 200 or as big as throwing out your back to push someone's car out! Seems pretty classy to me!

Cheers and CIAO BELLAS!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Gentlemen...Fashion and maintenance isn't just for the ladies!

Ok, this blog post is a request. Yes, I actually get requests for blog posts now, I feel so loved! Most of the time, I write to the ladies, but gentlemen, this one is for you. I was somewhat reminded last night about this subject when I saw back to back ads during the SuperBowl with men in only their underwear. Really? Is this something that we needed to see during the SuperBowl...and guess what, it wasn't Taye Diggs looking guys in their underwear either! And so I am reminded that if men had their way, they would just run around in their sweats or underwear every day, all day long.

So, guys, just so you know, here is what a woman goes through when she is getting ready for a date:

1. Go through entire closet, pick out at least 4-7 outfits.
2. Try all outfits on and figure out which one looks best.
3. Try on outfits with shoes.
4. Make sure bra and panties look OK with selected outfit.
5. Select the appropriate jewelry and handbag to go with selected outfit.
6. Shower...complete with hair wash, condition and shaving of legs.
7. Apply product to hair and decide how to wear hair.
8. Blow dry hair.
9. Flat iron hair.
10. Apply makeup.
11. Apply body lotion, deodorant and perfume.
12. Get dressed and check mirror.
13. Check bathroom mirror to ensure makeup looks good.
14. Re-check hair, maybe more hairspray or product.
15. Re-check outfit in full length mirror. Potentially make a shoe, handbag or jewelry change.
16. Re-check mirror one more time before out the door.

For some women, it may be a few less steps, for most, it is probably more. SO, gentlemen, here's are the steps that I think you take:

1. Watch ESPN for 30 minutes.
2. OOPS, only 10 minutes before I have to leave, better shower, eh I can watch the basketball bloopers and shower then.
3. OOPS, only 7 minutes before I have to leave...Shower and shave.
4. Pick up a pair of jeans off the floor and a shirt, hope they are 1/2 way clean.
5. Throw some product in the hair.
6. Apply deodorant and MAYBE cologne.
7. Get keys and cell phone, out the door.

SO hopefully, gentlemen, you are getting the picture. Now, I am not asking you to be the next top male fashion model. I know that makes you too METRO if you actually match your shoes to your belt. But when getting ready to take a lady out, consider that she is taking 60-90 minutes to get ready for your date AND a little extra effort on your part might go a LONG way. Gentlemen seriously, try to pick something to wear that isn't dirty or wrinkled, take the time to make sure that clothes match and are ironed. Make sure to shave and take a little time with the hair. And please don't wear gym shoes, save those for...THE GYM. If you need to know what pairs of shoes to have, please re-read my previous blog post about men's shoes.

Ladies, I hope that helps some of your guys out there!

Cheers and CIAO BELLAS!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Here a little road rage, there a little road rage, everywhere a little road rage!

So you can't really live in downtown Chicago without having a little road rage. But, yesterday I was struck by how inconsiderate, arrogant and ignorant many people can be when they get behind the wheel. Am I the only person that believes that you should still be a classy, considerate person when driving? And I know those of you out there that have ridden with me would say...I am a fairly aggressive driver and I am one of those people that rides up beside a long line of cars and merges in at the last minute, but you know what, I NEVER cut someone off, I take my opportunity to make a lane change and I do it, I don't sit there blocking the traffic behind me expecting someone to let me in.

So, it got me to thinking about those VERY inconsiderate and stoopid things that ladies and gentlemen do while at the wheel and I thought I would share my thoughts:

1. The gradual lane change. OK, really? If you are driving in traffic and need to make a lane change do it, don't ride the line or take 1-2 minutes to get over. Inconsiderate!

2. Slow drivers in the fast lane. These are the people that want to make a point that they are ONLY going to drive the speed limit and if you want to go faster, you need to go around them. Ok, but how about the signs that say Slower Traffic Move to the Right...those signs aren't for you? Everyone is entitled to go their own comfortable speed, but please, be a dear and move over for those that want to go faster than you. If they get a speeding ticket, guess what, it is not your problem slow drivers.

3. People that run the red light and then block the intersection for the cars going the other way. This usually happens in the city during rush hour. But really, your time is that much more important that the other people waiting to go the other way that you need to block the intersection? It is simply dangerous, completely inconsiderate and arrogant.

4. People that think you are tailgating them so they slam on their brakes. This one defies all logic to me. If you think I am following you too closely, why would you slam on your brakes to increase the possibility of me rear-ending you, especially on the interstate? If you think I am truly following you too closely, get over...guess what it decreases the chances of someone rear-ending you which is ultimately what you are concerned about, right?

5. People that double park in alleys or some place where the cars cannot get by them. Once again, really? Is it SOOO difficult for you to find a parking space or someplace else to go so that you are not blocking all traffic? I especially love it when they double park, turn on their hazards and leave their vehicle. So you are stuck. It is rude and inconsiderate.

6. People who park leave 4-5 feet in front and in back of them. Guess what, if everyone parked fairly close together, we could probably fit 2-3 more cars along the street. And I know you are concerned about your bumper, but guess is a hazard of living in the city and if you don't wait your bumper to be marked up, don't park on the street, period. So, once again, be considerate for other drivers that want to park. OH and BTW, don't park by feel...if it takes 2-4 times to get into the space, so be it, what is 3 minutes extra out of your day?

7. LASTLY, and this one is my favorite, people who cross the street mid-block, with no crosswalk, while pushing a baby stroller. And many times stand in the middle of the street waiting for cars with their baby stroller. Are you SOOO lazy that you will risk the life of your child and cannot walk 1/2 block to a crosswalk to cross the street? I see this all the time on busy streets...what happens if a car can't get stopped in time? The stroller is in front of you so your baby will get hit it really worth it?

And guess what, I am an aggressive driver and yes, I speed and I merge at the last minute. But I never run a right light, I usually let people in who are trying to turn, and I never cut people off. I may be aggressive and drive fast, but I am considerate and like to think I am classy while behind the wheel. So ladies and gentlemen seriously, just because you have gotten behind the wheel of your car doesn't mean you get to abandon the concepts of being gracious and classy. And think a little safety first! Knock on wood, in the past 10 years, I have been in one small accident, I rear ended a cab driver, no damage to either car. So you can still be aggressive and be safe! Speeding tickets....I think 4 in the past 10 years, eh, not the best record...

So ladies, be classy at all times! Cheers and CIAO BELLAS!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Color me pleasantly surprised!

Hello ladies! So a lot of times, my blog subjects are about me being disappointed in a group of ladies for a multitude of reasons...behavior, fashion, fitness, etc. However, in a surprise departure, I am going to tell you about being pleasantly surprised this past weekend. As most of you know, I am a volunteer leader for my sorority, so that means that I work with many of today's college women. Fairly regularly, I get disappointed in our college women because they don't show the proper respect for themselves and others. They have a tendancy to have a sense of entitlement and in certain cases be downright rude. BUT this past weekend, I changed my opinion.

Another volunteer leader and myself, a gorgeous blonde from the "sticks" as she likes to say, went to a university in the state of Illinois. Our first meeting was at 10:30 AM on Saturday. I told the blonde that they probably would be in PJ's and barely awake. We arrived at the chapter house, all the women were on time, waiting for us and dressed nicely for a Saturday morning. All of these women were polite and gracious. Throughout the day, we were constantly asked if we needed any drinks or snacks. They provided lunch at the chapter house and took us to dinner. All officers were on time for each of their meetings, they were engaged and polite at each one of them. That evening, the chapter members rented a movie projector and had movie night in their living room. We were invited to watch the movie with them (we did remind them that we are OLD and it was too late for us), however, it was very sweet and they even rented a popcorn machine. When we arrived at our hotel that night, they had left gift baskets for us in our hotel room and spelled out our sorority name in Hershey kisses on the beds (so cute)! We had asked them to meet us the next morning for a closing meeting. NOW, we asked for an 8:30 AM meeting on a Sunday. Never once, did they complain that is too early, each officer was there and ready to participate on Sunday morning. WOW! I was thoroughly impressed. THANK YOU know who you are.

A few years ago, I was asked to facilitate an officer retreat for another chapter at a university in Iowa. It was quite a different story at that event. And as I drove home after that retreat, I said to myself, if that is the future of our organization, I am highly concerned. After this trip, I am so encouraged by these women. Someone taught them correctly! Now, honestly, I know I should be this surprised in college women, but it was just a nice surprise, I had to share with you.

This upcoming weekend I will be participating in an interview process with senior college women who are members of our sorority. They are interviewing to work for our sorority. I so look forward to meeting wonderful, dynamic college women. I look to be surprised even more about how wonderful they are. In reading many of their applications, I cannot help but be amazed at what these women accomplish these days in college. SO OFF to the Big D for interviews.

To college women everywhere, take a lesson from our friends at the school in Illinois. It doesn't take much to make an impression. Be polite, be gracious, be classy! Cheers and CIAO BELLAS.