Friday, March 30, 2012

Brain Tumour Research's Wear A Hat Day

She said it:

I'm doing it in support of friends who have dealt with it (and looking adorkable):

It's not too late for you to join the fun. And if you do, post your photo (and send me a link or the photo for the site)!

Groves is doing it!

Monique is doing it!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

What’s the Fantasy?

With all the excitement over the $500 million Mega Millions lottery drawing, I've started thinking about how I'm going to spend my winnings (since, I think it's obvious that I will win it), and reviewing how my life will change. A girl has got to be ready for this sort of thing.

You know that the changes will not just be limited to changing my phone number and moving to a remote island (though those are clearly the first ones). For instance, perhaps Colin Firth has always had a movie script in the back of his closet that he has wanted to get made, but has never found the financing. If I call him as a pauper and offer to try to help him, I'm betting that I would not receive a return call from his agent. With $500 million sitting in the bank, someone might return my phone call. The point is, a middle-aged woman with a dream and no cash is a woman with very little power. A middle-aged woman with $500 million is a woman with a dream and the means to force other people to listen to it ad nauseam.

Money would certainly help my life right now. It would mean no need to go back to employment when my year is up. It would mean the ability to focus attention on projects (commercial and non-profit) that I think are interesting or important. My travels would become more exotic (and consistent). Also, I'd go back to Macy's and buy some of the stuff I liked, but couldn't really afford because it was not on sale, and I'd reacquaint myself with Jimmy Choo after an enforced, way-too-long absence.

There's only one tiny problem: the thing I really want, I can't buy. I can't even rent it. My biggest fantasy is to have the people I admire, admire my work. I want the people who interest me to be interested in me. You could argue that the money could buy someone's notice, but that isn't the same as respect. You could also argue that the money would mean getting my work to a wider audience, and it would increase my chances of the fantasy coming true. But higher visibility is no guarantee.

Let's be clear: I will take the money when they call my numbers. It will make my life better. It could potentially make the lives of the people around me better (the line starts behind Pen). But I have a feeling that the odds of me getting what I really want are the same whether the jackpot is mine or not (it is).

So, if you were to win the lottery (not this one, as it is mine), would it buy you what you really want?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

It All Started With…


Which led to this:

Which led to this:

In public.

Here's how.

A kind friend has taken me in hand and is trying to help me put together some "taking a meeting" outfits in attempt to at least make me feel comfortable enough in my own skin (and wardrobe) to project a totally false sense of confidence. To this end, we went shopping, and found some accessories that I liked and that would work with our theme (picture #1). I liken my bracelets to Wonder Woman's bracelets which deflected bullets, only mine were designed to deflect disdain and my own self-doubts—practically the same thing. Also, they were purchased at Forever 21 which makes me giggle because apparently, I'm taking that "forever" thing quite literally.

Clad in my new bracelets and other perfectly acceptable casual clothing, I went back to the mall to exchange something and the clerk at a different store commented on how much he liked my bracelets. All of a sudden, I realized that these magical bracelets may have disabled my cloaking device and that I was secretly (very secretly) a super model with impeccable fashion sense (or at least borrowed fashion sense from M who suggested that I buy them).

Fresh off this tiny victory, I swaggered myself to lunch at a local restaurant. Taking my customary table in the corner, I set about trying to come up with a strategic plan for my future. I had no sooner gotten to "1" when I noticed a very attractive man enter the restaurant. He looked at me, and actually saw me. I know this because when he smiled at me, I smiled back and surreptitiously looked over my shoulder to make certain that no one was actually behind me. Nope. Just me. When he sat down, he looked over again. So stunned at the magic of the bracelets, I smiled back slightly bigger—and by slightly bigger, I might mean picture #2.

Unfortunately, when you smile that enthusiastically at someone, they might get the impression that: a) they know you, but can't place you, or b) you are crazy. By the look of confusion on his face, I'm guessing both of those things were true. His response led to picture #3.

I was clearly overwhelmed—no, not just whelmed, but over. These bracelets are powerful, and as Spiderman's dad told him: with great power, comes the great responsibility of not confusing attractive men in restaurants (perhaps that is a paraphrase).

I can only imagine what is going to happen when I don the shoes.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Caption Me Wednesdays

Quick! What am I thinking? If you know me in real life, you've probably seen this look at least once. Feel free to post in comments, twitter, email, etc.

Monday, March 12, 2012


I come to you on this, the first day of my 43rd year of being single, ready to impart all the wisdom I have accumulated on numerous topics. I am prepared to grant you access to the profound workings of my mind—which may or may not be clouded with a sugar rush that only a birthday cake and bubbly can bring.


I have no idea what I am doing. And neither does anyone else.

If anyone knew for certain what to do in life, there would be only one self-help book on the shelf, and everyone would have adopted those guidelines because they worked for everyone. If there was only one way to find romance, there would be only one dating site. Also, you would not have, conservatively, 9,132 books about dating available on Amazon (there are actually more, but I didn't want to accidentally double count the hardcover and Kindle versions). There would be one book. Naturally, that book would be called "Dating according to Kate." Spoiler alert: it will include formal wear, as I recently rediscovered a couture dress in my closet that I'm dying to wear.

The best thing I can say is that after all of this time, I know me fairly well. It's not that I can't occasionally be surprising, but generally, I know me.

I seem to like asking questions more than either hearing (or giving) answers.
This is not just because I'm persnickety and argumentative, though undoubtedly both are true. For me, the journey tends to be more satisfying than the destination (unless we are discussing plane travel, and then… not so much). I like open-ended stories. I enjoy topical debate—which might seem odd since I often hold absolute opinions. But I do enjoy the questioning. Perhaps this is because the answers, thus far, have not lived up to their promise?

Chocolate is my favorite food group.
I used to think it was anything with salt, but chocolate has endured. It may be the true love of my life—which makes the very real possibility that I'm developing a chocolate allergy just a little disheartening. I plan to live in denial as long as possible. Certainly getting an actual allergy test is out of the question.

Someone needs to give me a $100 million entertainment development fund.
I think we can all agree that I would produce some incredibly entertaining work with $100 million. I'd also take $10 million…or $1 million. All of my incredibly talented friends (and I know many who just need that one break) would also benefit because the fund would finance their projects—provided they agree to cast a short list of actors I'd personally like to see work more… and if they would let me visit set…often… for, you know, script consulting purposes. Whatever. I think I would make a magnificent mogul. I'm adding the title to my business card right now.

As I get older, my inner monologue filter has started to become external.
And it's hysterical… although I would not be surprised in the least if it gets me punched at least once very soon.

I still believe I could wake up tomorrow and finally be 5'4".
Shhh. Let's not kill the fantasy.

Every year I call my parents on my birthday and hope that they have lied to me and that I'm actually 10 years younger.
They've started humoring me.

Even my fantasies are a disappointment.
The other night I had a fantasy where in the middle of an intellectual discourse, Clooney and I started to kiss. It was just "eh." He wasn't bad at it, and I think I held up my end with dignity. However, the spark just wasn't there. Typical.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Confidence (aka Getting Your Groove Back)

According to Hollywood, which is always right in these matters, the only thing a woman needs to get her confidence back (sexual or otherwise) is to have a fling with a 20-something male. I haven't done an exhaustive study, but I have a feeling that at least some of those scripts were written by 20-something males (and perhaps wishful thinking 40-something females). But here's my question: if you've been emotionally traumatized by the end of a long-term relationship either because your partner has cheated or simply decided that it wasn't working anymore, how the hell do you get enough confidence to approach any person again, let alone some 26 year old lothario?

I know what at least one of you is thinking: alcohol can play an important role in this healing process. But let's face it; that's not really confidence (or healing) talking as much as the inability to come to a cogent decision because you are so impaired you can no longer walk. All decisions made just prior to passing out in shrubbery should be treated as suspect at best. So barring alcohol or other chemically-fueled choices, what motivates you to make the approach?

Based on my own experiences, I'd have to say that starting over again after a long-term relationship (marriage or otherwise) is particularly tricky. Over time you have showed the best and worst of yourself to another person. You've said, "This is me, love me!" and they've said something along the lines of "Eh, I'm going through a selfish phase which involves red heads." Knowing that you allowed yourself the vulnerability of really letting someone see you, only to watch them walk away, why do you try again?

Obviously, people do it all the time. Somehow people convince themselves that with a different person, all their tricky bits will coalesce into something better than they had previously. And maybe they are right. Maybe the partner they were with was actually the problem and that with another person, and greater awareness, life really will be better. Logically, I know this happens. Emotionally, there's part of me that wonders what was wrong with me. I'm the common denominator in relationships that have gone off the rails, so why should I believe that the next one will magically work?

I understand that sex is a powerful motivator for some. But after years of being single, I'm not sure I could generate a "come hither" look if my life depended on it. People who know me—try to picture me being sexy. Frightening, isn't it? You can't do it, can you? The problem is, neither can I. "It's just like riding a bike," you say. It's really not—particularly not in a city like Los Angeles where sex seems to be treated like a competitive sport.

Maybe the reason I'm having such a difficult time getting my groove back is that I never had it in the first place? Maybe all I ever really had was a gentle sway, and now after all of this time I'm just frozen in place. Not moving forward. Not moving back. Just immobile with wariness wrapped in fear.

Monday, March 05, 2012

From the Outside Looking In

Close your eyes and try to conjure up an image of your first day of high school.

If you are my age, and a guy, you might have tried pulling off a Duran Duran (or maybe a Prince) look. Ladies, I'm feeling that a "Like a Virgin" Madonna, or "She Bop" Cyndi Lauper phase ran through you. Either way, we were all sporting some mighty funky hair that had so much Spritz the words "fire hazard" comes to mind. Just as you were feeling really good about yourself (or at least less alien), you walked into the cafeteria for the first time. Maybe you were a transfer, or maybe your high school took in kids from many other junior high schools, so you couldn't rely on having the same lunch as the friends you desperately sought out earlier in the day. You are alone. You are standing with your tray full of fish sticks and tater tots and wondering why God had forsaken you (as well as the entirety of the 10th grade).

Do you remember the panic? Your hands are sweating. Your heart is pounding. You are simultaneously convinced that everyone is staring at you and ignoring you because you are wholly inconsequential. Everyone around you seemed to have friends already. They all knew each other. Not only was there no room at their table, there was no room in their conversation. Stay, or go? Stay, or go? Sit alone and hope that someone joins you? Grab your tater tots and pretend that you have somewhere very important to be and can't waste time at such childish endeavors like lunch time?

This is me—every single day when I'm faced with a new group of people.

This was me, Thursday night. Only instead of lacy ankle socks, a million bracelets and a double-wrapped bondage belt, I looked like I was dressed to have tea with the Queen. Instead of high schoolers (or royalty), I was faced with a crowd of filmmakers (all seemingly more passionate, hip and accomplished than I). I was up north for a day trip to support a short film I had produced while still working in my corporate life. It was screening at a film festival there-- paired with a feature with talented known folks. My task was to answer questions and promote the short. What could go wrong?

As I entered an after-screening meet-up, I could hear Madonna's "Get Into The Groove" playing from somewhere outside the venue. Sadly, while I was responding nostalgically, the people around me were responding ironically. And the familiar panic set in. I tried to push through it—I exchanged pleasantries with a handful of other "artist" badge wearers. But as it was early on in the festival, none of us had seen much and most of them had worked together. I can't be the person who breaks into a recounting of war stories with "that reminds me of this time at the law firm I used to work at…"—though I have friends who can easily pull it off.

Once again, I was the outsider withdrawing by measures as each second ticked. I just didn't fit.

I excused myself shortly thereafter—not that anyone noticed my absence. I closed the door to my hotel room and felt myself crack. Nothing against the hotel (it was lovely), but if I had picked a place for emotional deterioration, it wouldn't have been there. For reference, I would have chosen Colin Firth's living room, so that he would be on hand to care for me (while no doubt rockin' a sweater like no other). I know I have to get over this. I know I have to take a deep breath (or 40), and make it impossible for people to dismiss me the next time. But right now, I'm standing with my lunch tray in hand just hoping for a spot at the table.

Friday, March 02, 2012

Me vs Reality

What all the other women looked like at the screening:

What I looked like:

...only I also had a jacket and pearl earrings.