Saturday, March 27, 2010

...and Breaking Up in Person Is Better than Leaving While Your Girlfriend's at Work

Neil Sedaka was right - breaking up is hard to do. Often it involves yelling and dividing up cds that haven't been played in a decade. Sometimes it involves one person being completely surprised. It always involves at least one person crying.

Why make it worse by being the ass who leaves without even saying it's over? If you're unsure what to say, try the old standby, "This isn't working" or even the cliched, "It's not you; it's me" - just say SOMETHING so the other person isn't left staring into a half-empty closet at 5:18 p.m. one Thursday.

A version of this is happening to one of my closest friends right now. She's not even sure if they've really broken up, things were so abrupt. One day she was helping her boyfriend's kids with their homework and the next - *poof* - he's gone.

This, of course, has me thinking about the big breakups of my own life: the ex-husband who answered, "Fine," when I told him we needed to divorce, the ex-boyfriend who managed to leave three nasty messages on my machine during my fifteen-minute commute from dropping off his things, and even the time my husband and I almost got divorced eight years ago (the roughest of all and we stayed together). Those events were tough, and I get why a person would want to avoid them, but come on! If you've ever loved a person at all, you owe them that final scene, however hard it may be.

Do not text and do not run in to let her know it's over while your new girl waits outside in a running car (which happened to a client of mine). Have the balls to say good-bye the right way. Expect tears, anger, yelling, resignation - expect it all. If you can, tell her something concrete, "I have feelings for someone else" or "I need someone who'll buy Charmin without bitching about the price." Be kind, too. You're the one leaving; you can afford to do it nicely. Say you're sorry, you wish things were different, but they're not, etc...

And if you decide five days later that breaking up was a mistake, be prepared to kiss some serious ass.

Monday, March 22, 2010

...and PDA Is Better than TMI

The other day I saw a couple of teenagers basically chewing on each others faces. My reaction was more of the "enjoy it while it lasts, kids" variety than repulsion. Seriously, who doesn't miss being so into your significant other that you can't wait for privacy?

My reaction to the woman in the coffee line that said "I'm all itchy from my Brazilian" was not so blase. She wasn't quiet and she talked about it for a few more minutes to her mildly embarrassed friend. I got the impression that the monologue was for the benefit of the cute male barista who, hopefully, couldn't hear her while steaming together my breve.

It doesn't bother me that she'd had a Brazilian (and I'm hoping she was talking about a wax job, not a foreign exchange student) - I've been in the salon industry for fifteen years and could care less about hair removal - but the way she was using it for shock value really got to me...

Sunday, March 21, 2010

...and Books Are Better than Movies

The Time Traveler's Wife

I love movies, but - let's face it - most that are created from books are a letdown. I think Silence of the Lambs is the only film that did its book version justice.

The Time Traveler's Wife has been one of my favorite novels for the last four years. I've read it eight times, and I was worried about the film interpretation. The actors? Great. The screenplay? Off. Everything happens too quickly. The pacing is strange. The story isn't as full as the book's.

Obviously, a novelist can give the reader so much more on paper than a director can on celluloid, and a book as complex as this one loses a lot in translation. Henry loses his edginess; Clare her brightness.

I think the people who see the movie first and then read the book will be happy, but any fan of the book will ultimately be disappointed.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

...and Running for Cancer Research Is Better than Waiting

If you've had your hair cut by me in the last eight years, you've probably met my good friend Sheldon. He owns the building and lives next door. He's always good for a laugh and a shoulder.

I have some great Sheldon stories.

One night, while Abby and I were toiling away, the music next door became so loud that I had to go tell them to turn it down (oh, did I mention Sheldon's old enough to be my grandpa?). A strange man opened the door and Bobby Darin blasted me in the face.

"Sheldon! The entertainment's here!"

"Leave those girls alone!"

I left with a glass of wine for Abby and a tumbler of something that was supposed to be "the good stuff" for me that turned out to be tequila on the rocks...

Next time you see me, ask about the time Sheldon had the hot tub put in. Or ask Mark Barker, if you know him.

A few weeks ago, Sheldon was diagnosed with leukemia. He and Abby have a very special friendship and, while it's hard for me to watch and wait, it's been very difficult for her. He shaved his head last week for her pet charity - the St. Baldrick's Foundation - and I was proud of the smile she kept on her face.

So now it's my turn. I'm not brave enough to shave my head, but I'm training to run a marathon for Sheldon and for Abby, who loves him. My goal is the City of Trees Marathon here in Boise, October 10. I have friends that are already rooting me on, but I know I will follow through if I publish my goal - embarrassment is something I don't handle well.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

...and Breve Lattes Are Better than Skinny Mochas

Which is just another reason to take up running. (There are 546 calories in a 16 oz. breve...but it is low in carbs.)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

...and Spirituality Is Better than Religion

Now, before you get all worked up, let me tell you how I define these words.

To me, spirituality is something inherent - something a person lives, while religion is a label that can - but doesn't always - box in your beliefs.

Some of the most spiritual people I know call themselves religious. That's fine. They subscribe to something specific and I respect that immensely.

However, a lot of people I know, that don't consider themselves religious, have a sense of the divine that passes on to everyone they encounter. That is how I define spirituality. It's beyond regular faith at that point.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

...and Getting Enough Sleep Is Better than Getting Everything Done

It has taken me a long time to realize this.

When I get enough sleep, I am a MUCH happier person. Usually, I think of a hundred things that need done (like baseboards or some stupid thing) and stay up trying to get it all done. Not anymore.

Sleep also means the next day I won't be crazy.