Last night I had dinner with my friend Cecilia*, and, as you might expect, our conversation turned to dating. We’re around the same age, and many of her friends are married and having kids. As is the plight of many a single woman with friends who have settled down, Cecilia has been getting plenty of unsolicited advice about how she can meet Mr. Right. One of the most common pieces of advice? “Put yourself out there!” Cecilia and I share a mutual loathing for this particular phrase. Keep reading »
I try to keep an open mind about plastic surgery, I really do. I try to tell myself that it’s just like dying your hair or wearing a pair of Spanx—a little tweak that can make you feel super slammin’. I try to tell myself that everyone has the right to look their best, and if it’s worth it to someone to drop serious Benjamins on a cosmetic procedure, who am I to object? But then I read a story like the one yesterday about Solange Magnano, the stunning 38-year-old former Miss Argentina who died after the liquid from a gluteoplasty injection made its way into her lungs and brains. It’s horribly sad, especially considering that her butt was enviable just the way it was. And I just can’t hold it in anymore: How have we created a culture in which it’s OK to go under the knife without medical necessity in the name of fixing some “flaw” no one ever noticed anyway? Keep reading »
I’m sorry, but are our country’s medical agencies smoking something? Just a few days after new breast cancer screening guidelines recommended mammograms only for women 50 and older and declared self-breast exams moot, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists is now telling women to delay getting their first pap smear until they are 21 and to get them less often afterwards. This is pretty confusing because, until today, the rule was that women should have their first terribly uncomfortable meeting with the dreaded stirrups shortly after becoming sexual active, and that they should get a pap every year at their annual check-up. So why the change? ACOG says that in young women, HPV—the virus that can lead to cervical cancer—is very prevalent and that the huge majority of women clear the virus on their own, without any medical intervention. They say that there are only one to two cases of cervical cancer a year for every million women between the ages of 15 and 19. But because testing has become so routine, ACOG says that young women who are very unlikely to develop cervical cancer are getting invasive procedures to remove precancerous growths and cells that would clear on their own. And that they’re having complications, like injury to the cervix, that can cause problems if they have a baby. As for recommending less frequent testing, ACOG argues that cervical cancer develops slowly—it can take 10 to 20 years—so can be caught early even with less rigorous testing. [NY Times]
While these arguments sound logical, I have a hard time believing that this can be a good idea. And honestly, it makes me pretty mad. Keep reading »
I don’t know about you folks, but for me, a weekend with the rents is always fraught with tension. Is Mom going to pester me about brushing my hair? Is Dad going to ask me how much money I’m saving? Will they bristle if my boyfriend and I sleep in the same bed?
But I didn’t see Sunday morning’s battle royale coming at all.
Mom and I were hanging out in her bedroom; she was smoking a cigarette and I was scratching my cat behind the ears. Then Mom furrowed her brow, scrunched up her face and examined my pajamas-clad body. “You know, Jess,” she remarked, “you’ve put on some weight.”
My eyes bulged. Fire was breathed. Thunder boomed. Lightening crackled. The cat cowered in fear under the bed. Keep reading »
We have this really annoying habit as humans of thinking we’re invincible or that the one tragic thing that could happen in a situation won’t happen to us. Nowhere else is this more evident than with the drunk driver. Rarely does the driver set out to kill — he/she only wants to ride the high as they get from point A to B — but we know all too well that driving under the influence can kill.
And drunk drivers have been killing children recently in New York City. This month alone, three children have died as a result of riding in a vehicle driven by a woman allegedly under the influence. Keep reading »
Earlier this week, I extolled the virtues of donning a thong bikini on the beach. I received a great deal of support from readers, but one subject that came up in the comments surprised me: whether it’s appropriate for 3- to 5-year-old girls to wear bikinis. Those opposed think the bikinis are too sexy for little girls, but I don’t see a problem with all little girl bikinis. (Bikini refers to all two-piece bathing suits, not just string bikinis.) Keep reading »
This past week on VH1′s “Tool Academy,” the dudes were taught humility by admitting their deepest fears about their relationships and prancing around in tutus. However, their girlfriends have been trying to put them in their place since the season began by withholding sex. Granted, none of those bros deserve a piece of their girl’s promise land, since they’ve been complete bastards, but if these ladies are willing to stand by their jerky boyfriends while they man up, what’s the point of not having sexy times?! It simply turns sex into a control issue. However, these “Tool”-ettes are not alone in their belief that keeping their legs closed for business will bring about a positive change in their love life. The question is, does denying what you both need — sex — get you what you want — a good relationship?
Keep reading »
On the newest episode of “The Real World: Brooklyn” (the show started last week and has been relatively boring), one of the male housemates made a big show of having to use Magnum condoms. Oh really dude? Seriously, there is no bigger marketing scam than Magnums, except maybe New Coke, only New Coke failed, and Magnums, for whatever reason, are still on shelves. Keep reading »
I’m fat. I have gigantic ta-tas and a fat ass(et). While I didn’t always see it as such (high school was rough), as an adult, having all those extra mouthfuls has certainly come in handy — just ask my boyfriends. But OK, I’ll admit it; being a large lady, I’ve worried about the possibility of suffocating a man to death while sitting on his face. Gasp! Can you imagine me on the local news trying to explain that crime against nature?! But do you know what is a worse fate? Being inhibited in the sack just because you’re a big, beautiful woman. That would be a real shame. With that in mind, I am all for some female empowerment for my fellow fat chicks! However, I should qualify that statement by saying it sucks twice as hard when “sexperts” pretend to be supportive and then dish out condescending advice. A perfect example of this mean-girl tactic is The Sun‘s “Big Girl’s Guide To Sex.” It sounded promising, but in reality, the article features bedroom tips on how to make yourself look thinner, as if that really means sexier. Well, I call bull tit! More, after the jump … Keep reading »
In the first few episodes of “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” we noticed that the women, especially Lisa Wu Hartwell, always greeted each other by addressing each others beauty. They say, “Hey beautiful!” or “You’re so gorgeous.” At first we thought this was a fluke, that they’re just not used to cameras following them and are pulling for dialogue, but these exclamations have lasted through the season finale. We think it’s kind of sad that mothers who purport to be elite society with their own clothing/jewelry lines, charitable foundations or singing careers have to base their worth on physical attributes. We’re not saying these women aren’t beautiful, we just think they’re (supposed to be) much more than that. I have a girlfriend who has an adorable daughter. I mean, she’s so cute it hurts to look at her. But whenever I see her, I always say, “Hello, beautiful, intelligent girl.” I don’t want her to grow up thinking she’s valued just because she’s pretty. I know another six year old who bats her eyelashes to get what she wants. This girl is also highly intelligent, but she’s already learned to use her beauty, not her mind, to satisfy her wants. The real housewives are too old to change, but we’re comforted by the fact that we can stop this cycle with the little girls in our lives. Keep reading »