Monday, February 22, 2010

Summary Judgments: Books n' Jeans

I thought I just did one of these posts, but I looked and it was over a month ago. I'll try to keep them to once a month or so, because I could wear you out with all the opinions I have--around here it's opinions all night long. Just like Lionel Richie said.

At Hank's bedtime, he likes for one of us to lie down on the couch in his room for a few minutes. I've gotten into the habit of reading in there as he falls asleep. It's a peaceful time. We chat a little bit, then he says, "Okay, that's enough. Good night," and he turns over and goes to sleep. Sometimes if I'm caught up in my book, I stay there a while longer. In that venue, I like to read things that are absorbing but not demanding.

Right now it's that Andrew Young tell-all, The Politician: An Insider's Account of John Edwards's Pursuit of the Presidency and the Scandal That Brought Him Down. I know, I feel kind of gross even admitting this. But I thought there might be some nuance to John Edwards's scuzzbucketness that I was missing. So lemme tell you, it is a disturbing book. Disturbing because I think there are lots of powerful people like John Edwards was, just doing whatever the hell they want, living in a bubble-world created and maintained for them by people like Andrew Young. This guy's sycophancy is profound. Profound and revolting. If you're not up on this gossip, he's the guy who was JE's closest aide for years, he facilitated JE's long affair with Rielle Hunter and helped him keep it secret, and he finally claimed paternity of Rielle Hunter's baby when JE asked him to. Young seems to have very little sense of himself as an independent moral agent. He repeatedly says that he found Edwards's behavior wrong and "repulsive," yet nowhere does he recount any time where he confronted him or expressed disapproval. And as for John Edwards, good grief. That shit is bananas. Just like Gwen Stefani said.

In my own bedroom I'm still reading The Swan Thieves by Elizabeth Kostova. It's good. Not as good as The Historian, her first novel, but I'm very into it. I'm halfway through, and I cannot figure out what on earth is going to happen. Part of the reason I'm so mystified is that I can't decide what genre of novel this is. You know how, the genre governs the range of possible directions the plot can go in? Like, if you are reading a fluffy mom lit novel, like Slummy Mummy (hilarious), the heroine is not going to deal with her animosity towards her fellow room mom by having the woman whacked. Likewise, a magical dome is not going to descend over her town, stranding her antagonist on the outside. So, with Swan Thieves, I can't figure out what might happen because I can't figure out what genre this is.

And is it weird that one of my favorite writers right now writes for Gawker? If you're not reading Richard Lawson's essays and recaps of popular television shows, they will make your life more fun. I no longer watch those "Real Housewives" shows, but I read his recaps and they make me laugh my face off. He is like a frackin' virtuoso of tone. Much more fun than watching the actual stuff he's talking about. Read any of the Real Housewives recaps, though the Orange County and New Jersey ones are especially choice.

New Vampire Weekend album, Contra: I like them, and I kind of like a few songs on this, except it turns me off the way, in that one song "Horchata," they rhyme "horchata" with "aranciata." I mean, not that those words don't rhyme, but they just seem so pleased with themselves for thinking of it.

Gap jeans in "Perfect Boot." I think these are awesome jeans. Reader, would you like to see a picture of my butt? What's that you say? Oh, I have one right here.

These were the Perfect Boot jeans right out of the package, in all their unstretched-out goodness. I am telling you, it's all about the pocket placement, and these people are geniuses of it. The other thing about these is that they're what Gap calls mid-rise, which means they are a few fingers below my belly button but still above the love handles. Or side muffins or whatever you call them.

Yes, I asked Matt to take some pictures of my new jeans so I could show my sister on (if you're on there, lemme know and I'll friend you!), I wasn't thinking I would post them on my blog. But since I'm giving you the summary judgments and all. Reader, I feel so much closer to you now! The white jeans are cute, even though they're "distressed," grrr, but I don't have pics of those yet. Anyhoo, I do recommend the Perfect Boot. The Curvy is too low for me, but the Long 'n Leans are also good.

Ooh, the new Masterpiece Theatre of Emma. I'm late to this party, since the third part ran on February 7, but I had it dvr'd. Some of the recent Masterpiece Austens have been a little limp (that Mansfield Park last year, snore), but this one is delightful. Johnnie Lee Miller plays Mr. Knightly and he is adorable. I like that it's a longer film and doesn't cram the whole story into two hours. Watch it if they rerun it near you.

I think there was more but I'm sure we're all sick of me by now. Have a good night y'all! Laura is so excited that women's figure skating is coming on tonight.


A Lawyer Mom's Musings said...

Those are some awesome jeans! Do they have a similar fit that's straight leg?

Say, I'll trade you my "Game Change" book for Andrew Young's, when you're through. It's great. I can't believe AY went along with all of that immoral nonsense. It's stunning. And I agree w/you -- there are plenty more where JE came from. To wit: Tiger.

Jenni said...

How are those perfect boot size-wise? Do you wear the same in perfect boot as you do in long n' lean? I also LOVE the mid rise, but I heard the long n' lean runs big. lemme know.

Jenni said...

oh, PS, the ass looks glorious.

Becky said...

Thank you Jenni, you doll. I think the Long n' Leans DO run big, but only maybe half a size? Anyway, yes, I have the same size in the perfect boot and the long n leans, but the perfect boots are tighter. I wear a size bigger in the Real Straight, which is the straight-leg fit you want, Lawyer Mom. Also, size bigger in the Always Skinny, 'cause they're like skinny.

And LM, I'm reading Game Change too! It's the better read, really.

Amy said...

I'd like to read Game Change. I read that excerpt you linked to last time, and wow. You just never know what's really going on, do ya?

In other news, those jeans look totally smokin' on you, as I've told you already. Well done! I like Gap's Curvy fit, am finding they actually fit me better than the L and L's.

clear screen said...

Long n' lean runs big!? No wonder I thought I was losing weight.
And ditto on the butt-pic admiration, and your insight on pocket placement.
Persuasion started on PBS last night, but I missed it. I finally read the novel last month . . . it was so good. And kind of mean, too. isn't it? or was she always kind of snarky?

Lisa Lilienthal said...

Smokin' hot jeans! And Richard Lawson, OMG you have changed my life.

Becky said...

Clear Screen! Persuasion is definitely my favorite, though when I went into the hospital to have Laura, I took Emma with me. I do think Persuasion is max snarky, but I think it's part of its whole "autumnal Austen" thing. It just seems more. . .essential to me. Like Austen boiled down.

Lisa! You're welcome for the Lawson. You really gotta dig in and read all the way to the end on his stuff.

Veronica said...

1. Cute butt! Ah, jeans shopping. I have one pair of pre-pregnancy jeans I can fit into, but they used to be sorta baggy and now they're buttalicious. Got some work to do before I want to spend any money, ya know? (Everyone was all nice and told me I was only gaining a belly, but, um, when I try to put on regular clothes... hel-lo thighs! Oops.)
2. We LOVED that BBC Emma! My favorite version I've seen, I think.

Becky said...

I know, V. When I was pregnant with Hank, I was carrying mostly in front, so I thought it was all belly. Then later I was like, oh.

Keely said...

Gap jeans never fit me properly. Probably because of the side-muffins. Which you clearly don't possess, by the way.

I need to read a book, or something. Brain. Turning to Jello.

Beth said...

I'm so disappointed in JE. He was so dreamy when he seemed upright and moral, what with the sob story about his son and all.

I read The Historian at your suggestion and LOVED it. I will probably read the next one, too, at some point. Now I'm indulging in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and it's good so far but too a while to get going. I'm also simultaneously reading The Art of Eating In, as part of my eating in experiment. Holy crap, did you know that Americans spend twice as much on restaurant meals than they do on groceries? It's an interesting read.

I have the Long n Leans and the Real Straights, which I like (not as skinny as the skinny). But good Lord, I've seen first hand the crazy "vanity" sizing going on there over the past few years. I had an old pair of shorts that I bought there about 8 years ago-- I don't really wear shorts-- and I was going through my stuff to get rid of things. I tried these on and it wasn't even CLOSE, like they seemed about 2 sizes too small. And they were, on the label, one size BIGGER than I actually wear in their clothes there now. They've totally caved to vanity sizing.

Kelly said...

Hot momma!! I love those jeans- great choice! I am definitely going to have to look into a pair of those once baby C comes out. Too bad they don't make elastic waists...and what's this about March 23rd?! Take it back woman!! ;)

Meghan said...

So, AY's dad used to be the head campus minister at my place of employment back in the 70s and early 80s. He was defrocked and dismissed from the university for some sketchy reasons (frankly, I do not know what they were, except that it generally is not easy to be defrocked in the UMC). Anyway, he died last fall, and we wound up extending an olive branch of sorts and had a Memorial for him at one of our Choral Vespers services. Of course, AY was at the service. I did a fair amount of corresponding with him re: details before the service. And I just thought, "this is one helluva messy family system." Multiple generations of messiness, in fact.

Casey said...

Rawr, what a nice butt you have there! My jeans always fit when I put them on but stretch later in the day so I have to tug them up. I can't win.

Uh, Hank has a couch in his room? Lucky kid.

Coffee with Cathy said...

Becky -- I have to say that I did not like "Swan Thieves" -- too long and tedious and by the end I really didn't care enough about the characters to ... well, care. But maybe that's just me being all grumpy. I will give the Gap jeans a try, though. I'm always on the search for good jeans, and you are so right about pocket placement and mid-rise being crucial. I love J Brand for those very reasons, but Gap jeans are about half the price, so I'd be willing to switch.

Sara said...

I think if I read the JE book I'd be even more paranoid of politicians and celebrities than I already am. Not that it isn't warranted, but does a body really need *that* much cynicism at once?

The butt is looking good. Definitely right about the pockets. (too bad about the white jeans being distressed! poo. but still cute, I'm sure.)