Surreal didn’t begin to explain my feelings when I saw my cleavage on the side of a New York City bus for the first time. I was in shock when I discovered more advertisements, larger than my Brooklyn apartment, plastered in every popular subway station. It was just beyond weird to be mindlessly flipping through the latest edition of Us Weekly while getting a pedicure and come across pictures of myself.
The hair and makeup were bad enough, but that cleavage. After living with my 32 B’s for 30 years, I was pretty darn certain that those E cups were not mine. The short-lived reality show, “The Naughty Kitchen With Chef Blythe Beck,” advertised by my inflated anatomy, premiered on the Oxygen network shortly after I began to pursue my real career.
I never set out to be the next Bad Girl, Real Housewife, or Kardashian. I was working in Dallas, saving money to move to New York, where I’d been accepted at The New School’s journalism program. I’d been dabbling in real estate when my friend Megan, who managed the upscale Hotel Palomar in my Texas hometown, needed a new cocktail waitress. I was hired on the spot. I worked three nights a week, meeting fun people and making good money to fund my move. I had little reason to think anything of it when Megan mentioned hiring Blythe Beck, an infamous 28-year-old Dallas chef and local celebrity. Keep reading »
No one does “judgmental” like my Mom.
“Sweetheart, I don’t understand. If you were building a real relationship with this boy, then why would one text message destroy it all?”
She didn’t get it. George and I had been friends in college. We’d recently re-connected years later in New York and started having brunch, texting all the time, meeting up for drinks, swinging by our favorite burger joint, and making out. A lot. (We weren’t having sex, Mom, FYI.)
It thrilled me that maybe – maybe – we would have The Talk soon and he would become my boyfriend. How wild, hilarious, awesome and unexpected would that be, after all the years we had known each other! Keep reading »
To ensure my place as a “true Texan,” a jar of actual Lone Star dirt placed underneath the Connecticut hospital delivery bed confirmed that I was technically born on Texas soil. But establishing I was half-Texan was not the only attribute that my mother would assure I inherited from her side of the family, though. The day I popped out, Mom made sure to whisper the Girl Scout Promise into my newborn ears, an oration that would stick with me for the next 18 years.
After both my aunt and now-deceased grandmother received the Trefoil Award, an award given to “outstanding [women] and dedicated community leader[s] who embody the beliefs and principles of the Girl Scout Movement,” I had no other choice but to become a Girl Scout. My grandmother was a woman so involved in Girl Scouts that a GS Leadership Center was named in her honor. And she made damn well sure that every one of her daughters and granddaughters would represent the Girl Scout Mission and become “girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place.” Keep reading »
My husband and I weren’t making a political statement, revolutionizing the stay-at-home parenting dynamic or sticking it to corporate America when we deliberately choose to both be work-at-home, stay-at-home parents. While there are lots of acronyms for one parent doing this—WAHM, SAHM, WAHD and beyond—I have yet to see one that fits our family. Perhaps DIWAHSAHPWOB (Double-Income-Work-At Home-Stay-At-Home-Parents-With-One-Baby).
Regardless of what you want to call us, we don’t really fit into any of the categories Elizabeth Wurtzel’s now infamous piece in The Atlantic mentions. Though I do sometimes shrug off work to go do errands (that don’t involve yoga or pedicures). Because to me, it’s a necessity to do errands during non-mobbed Trader Joe’s hours so my husband and I can de-career our marriage for a few hours and do adult things. Like have a beer before I try to finish freelance assignments I’ve barely scratched because I spent all day wrangling a baby girl with a stuffy nose. Keep reading »
When I was wee, I was best friends with the girls who were handy. Neighborhood kids, playgroup participants, and the like. In grade school, I gravitated toward girls who were brainy like me. Since book smarts were considered to be at odds with potential popularity, and since I had more going in the Brains Department than the Social Graces Department, I sought out equally bookish girlfriends. High school was pretty much the same as grade school, but in college, I ran with girls who shared classes, activities, or interests with me. And after college I befriended women who worked with me. Longstanding friendships from school and activities sometimes lingered, but new friends were drawn almost exclusively from my coworker pool. Keep reading »
Writing about body love and acceptance? That’s my jam. Teaching women to embrace their supposed “flaws,” accept that physical beauty comes in infinite forms, and learn to love their own bodies just as they are? My life’s quest. So it is with great trepidation that I reveal the following: I really dislike being naked. I mean, if there’s gonna be a roll in the hay, that’s one thing, but hanging out in the locker room? Sleeping? Just about anywhere except the bathtub? I’d rather have a bare minimum of knickers and a bra. Keep reading »
I heard about Pinterest at a wedding reception last year and within 24 hours, I was hooked. I had to pin everything: I grabbed every vegan recipe, organizing tip, cute outfit, inspirational quote, and makeup tutorial I could get my freshly ombre-manicured fingers on. Then, a few months later, I got engaged and suddenly it was time to add a new board.
As a proud member of the one percent of Pinterest users who didn’t already have a Dream Wedding board, I started a For Real Wedding board and began to explore the site’s “Weddings and Events” category. Within five minutes, it became apparent to me that I would need to locate a rustic barn surrounded by an endless field of wildflowers. According to Pinterest, that seems to be the only place people are getting married these days. Keep reading »
I’m just going to come clean: I hate every woman my husband has ever dated.
I won’t apologize for it or try to get over it. I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I will always hate them to some degree, depending on the depth of their relationship. If she was a random hook up, I’ll hate her slightly less than if she was a serious long term girlfriend. Regardless, I hate them all. Keep reading »
In my mid-twenties, I came out as a lesbian. But the hardest part wasn’t even coming out: it was realizing my wedding would be different and therefore I was different. It took me a few years to come to terms with the fact that my wedding wouldn’t have a groom or any of the other stuff that goes along with heterosexual weddings.
A few months ago, my girlfriend of three years proposed. A couple of weeks after we got engaged, Chriss told me she was thinking about converting to Judaism. So as we started planning our wedding, we began attending synagogue together and Chriss enrolled in an Introduction to Judaism class. When we became full-fledged members of our synagogue and reserved the chapel for our wedding it dawned on me: I have no idea what a lesbian Jewish wedding would look like. Keep reading »