Nevermind how I found myself at the French website for Tampax. What’s more crazy is what I found there: a marketing campaign recruiting Tampax tampon users to vie for a spot as president of the “Max Le Tampax” Fan Club. Why anyone in their right mind would want to be the president of a club dedicated to the art of menstruation is beyond me. Worse, I can’t imagine the ad agency reps behind this campaign were in any state of mental stability when they created this Max character—a young, overly dramatic dude (dare I even say teenager?) dressed in a giant yellow tampon costume …
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For all women, there are universal female experiences that rank inevitably high on the embarrassment scale. Try, for example:
- “Price check. Can I get a price check on a box of Ultra Heavy Flow Tampax tampons?”
- “Uh, babe, did you just queef?”
- “I can see your days of the week underwear through that skirt, and just so you know, it’s not Thursday.”
Try having a female problem in a foreign country and you’ll multiply any of your shame times 10 … Keep reading »
My friend Megan from the States is in town for a few days, and yesterday we spent a lazy Sunday walking up and down the Seine, making fun of French joggers in ridiculous running gear and checking out the guys who passed us by.
“Wow, Paris definitely has some attractive men,” she noted as a particularly dashing gentleman in a perfectly tailored suit passed by us.
“Indeed, it does,” I agreed. We walked on a bit more, taking in the sights.
“Oh man,” she said. “Like that guy that we just passed, did you see him? So. Hot.”
“What? Where? No.”
“How could you not see him? He was looking straight at us.”
“Leo, I think you have a bit of a perception problem. You really don’t seem to catch on when guys are checking you out.”
“I do too! I just don’t try to make anything too obvious, you know?” Keep reading »
“Hi honeeeyyy! So have you talked to your sister about July?”
“Mom, what? What’s happening in July?”
“You’re coming home. You and your sister are going to come up to Maine.”
“Uh, we are?”
I shouldn’t have been surprised when talking on the phone with my mother last week because stuff like this is typical mom-behavior. You know, telling you what to do, or making plans and then “informing” you of them, rather than scheduling them. Ever since I knew I might stay in Paris for a few extra months, I also knew I’d probably want to make a trip home at some point, but hadn’t gotten that far yet. With my mom on my back about July—not a month I would have picked for travel to the U.S.—it’s started to remind me of this weird relationship space I’m entering with my parents, one that I don’t know how to negotiate yet. Keep reading »
Bonjour, mes amis. It is I, Leonora, your faithful heroine on zee mission ov finding her one true love à Paree. So, it ees wis great disappointment zat I muss tell you that this week, I haf made très peu de progress. I am, how you say, a leetle stuck in zee matters of zee heart.
OK, so actually, the truth is just that I had a rather uneventful week. No word from any boys. Stayed in most nights, preferring to take walks and cook dinner alone. I’m not feeling too sad or lonely, just experiencing a slight lull in entertainment. But in general, I’m cool and calm, and have been focusing on appreciating Paris for the amazing city that it is. Keep reading »
Once the weather gets nice in Paris, life becomes dangerous. All anyone wants to do is lounge by the Seine with a bottle of wine, some creamy cheese, and a crispy baguette. I could do this everyday for the rest of my life and be happy. Between the Luxembourg gardens being a stone’s throw away, the populated banks of the river, and the sun-drenched terraces of cafes, it’s so tempting to just blow off everything and indulge. An unhappy realization came yesterday when I tried on some of my summer pieces to realize that —ugh—my pants are tight. As I tried to wedge myself into a European size 36 skirt, which had fit me so perfectly in September, I let out a little whimper of defeat. I knew what this meant: goodbye wine and baguettes. At least for a little while. Although, in reality, I’ll probably be good for about a week, then tell myself as I have a half glass of rosé and a bite of croissant that I’m being oh-so-French by showing such gallant restraint and moderation. For an American in Paris, the word moderation tends to be interpreted quite liberally. Keep reading »
I’ve never been a believer in the “power of positive thinking,” but I may be changing my ideas about keeping a constructive and happy outlook on life. I was in a real funk throughout the winter, and it was just today, as I was skipping around town running errands, that I realized I’m fully out of my dark phase. I can pinpoint this change because of two very concrete things: 1.) the sun being out and the temperatures rising, bringing out the cherry tree blossoms and generally making Paris slowly wake up in color; 2.) finally feeling over Alex. I have been very careful to monitor my thoughts about him. The usual thing that happens is something reminds me of a moment with him, and my heart aches for a moment while I say to myself, Oh, Alex. Sigh. What happened? It lasts for a second, a flash, and could happen as many as 20 times a day. A few weeks ago, I noticed the frequency had tapered to some 5-10 times a day. But now what’s amazing me is when I stop to think, When’s the last time you thought about Alex? I feel good that I can tell myself that it was yesterday, or even the day before.
But above all, I’ve just had a good feeling (like I mentioned in my last post) that spring in Paris is going to be great, and that things are going to start happening for me. And I truly believe that because I’m in this mindset, they are. Keep reading »