I Took my Fake Gay Mexican Son Tampon Shopping in NYC

04.5.12

It’s one o’clock in the morning and I’m standing in Duane Reade scanning the shelves for the right tampons while my Fake Gay Mexican Son says, “Um… don’t you use something else.”

“It sort of surprised me this time.” I muttered. “Actually it’s surprised me every month for almost 30 years. And why am I talking to you about this?”

Mercifully my Fake Gay Mexican Son has about a dozen sisters and a mother he’s very close to so the conversation wasn’t as awkward as it should have been.

We’d just finished an amazing late snack of empanadas in Hells Kitchen with Mary. A well manicured Persian hipster ran his hand along my ass quite accidentally and apologized by opening his heavily lined eyes cartoonishly, flipping his hand to the side and saying, “It’s okay I’m GAY.”

I muttered something about everyone being gay… for a year at least in college everyone is. Subtext: leave my ass alone, you’re young and pretty but I’m old and jaded and not in the mood for this shit. Go to your room.

Our empanadas were amazing but it was strange to be in New York with my LA gym buddy eating El Salvadoran food that should have been better in Los Angeles where we have actual El Salvadorans living… I guess New York has a few too. The ones who want things like winter and rain. Maybe Los Angeles just has the smart El Salvadorans.

Before the empanadas we’d attended Oprah’s LifeClass with Tony Robbins and before that we’d had drinks and appetizers at Oceanic. My Fake Gay Mexican Son swooned over Mandy and I think he’s decided to be the next single girl/guy… we will never know because he’s busy writing papers about me and Kim Kardashian and passing them off to unsuspecting Ivy League Professors as cultural anthropology.

The child is about to get a PhD in pop culture and now I have to worry about my tampons showing up in a dissertation.

Win a Pair of Tickets to Oprah’s LifeClass with Tony Robbins at Radio City Music Hall

03.16.12

I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned the Oprah trip. Like if you were standing in line with me at the grocery store I was probably like, “Hey, did you see that O Magazine… and did you know I’m traveling with Oprah to St. Louis, New York and Toronto?” And then you rolled your eyes and were like Shut the fuck up lady but only in your head because one of us is polite.

I have some tickets to share for the LifeClass with Tony Robbins. It’s April 2 in the evening. I can’t guarantee that it will be as exciting as this one…


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Oprah, Gratitude and Pocahontas

03.15.12

The travel plans are coming together for Oprah’s LifeClass and it’s not the way I’d have planned it. Yesterday I was grumpy about it, I didn’t understand why anyone would travel in this manner and I was ThisClose to just walking away from the project. I am not a low maintenance traveler and it’s not one of things I’m trying to change about myself.

Well, maybe it is.

This week has sort of conspired against me and I haven’t been able to exercise as much as I ought to. I’ve had a long walk but it was a slow walk because it was a cold morning. I had tennis but it was doubles and that’s not always very satisfying, yoga was a bit of a bust too. These aren’t the biggest problems that anyone could have but moving my body is such a link to sanity for me that having three of these days back to back was crushing. I’ve been cranky and ill tempered.

I complained to Chelsea about the flights and thought maybe they’d allow me to travel on my own. To her credit Chelsea did not say, “Listen lady we’ve got 200 people to fly around you’re not that important.” She did patiently explain that hundreds of people would be flying in, which was something I didn’t understand. Then she explained that there were no airline choices, Ms. Winfrey has a longstanding relationship with United. It started making sense to me but I was still irritated and wondering if taking connecting flights was simply a sign that this isn’t the right trip for me. I told her I’d sleep on it.

Shortly after the LifeClass call one of the Pocahontas’ called and asked how things were and she immediately got an earful from me. I was bitching and complaining and what’s in it for me’ing when she interrupted me with he sage mommyness. She began with, “Oprah changed my life.” And then interrupted my eye roll with a story about how she tried writing down 5 things she was grateful for each day and how it reframed how she looked at her life. I was tired, I was cranky (yes I sound like a toddler) and I listened but wasn’t ready to absorb it all.

This morning I went to the kids’ chapel because Jane thought she’d made honor roll. She worked hard for those grades but part of me was a little disappointed that she didn’t make Dean’s List. Negative much? During Chapel (I know… we’re not supposed to) I was whispering with another mom and she asked about the LifeClass. I complained about the travel.

I complained about being called by the Oprah Winfrey Network. I complained about being taken to three cities and two countries and I complained about the timeline. I heard myself talking like an angry and selfish woman but somehow didn’t have the presence of mind to stop.

I went to tennis, singles this time. As I ran across the court I smelled orange blossoms from the tree that stands near the baseline and a wave of goodness crashed over me. I’ll never know if the endorphins or the scent memory triggered it and I’m not sure it matters.

I am grateful. I stood on the court in that very moment and was grateful for the kind of life that has me playing tennis in a friend’s back yard on a Thursday morning while the smell of orange blossoms tickles my nose. I am grateful for a daughter who is both smart and hardworking. I am grateful that I’m able to move.

In that moment I was able to reframe my position and look forward to trips that are going to feed me with wisdom and knowledge. Just like Pocahontas said, the gratitude didn’t change my life, it changed me.