So yesterday I was reading, and enjoying, “The Great Leader,” Jim Harrison’s new novel (currently on the nightstand), when I come across this on page 93:

He hit the radio OFF button when someone on NPR used the word turd iconic.

Yes. [Fist pump.] It’s always good to find allies in this cruel world. The paragraph goes on to condemn “closure” (total agreement) and “embedded” (neutral) and the whole idea of punditry. Having once been a pundit of sorts — or “pundint,” in Sarah Palin’s pronunciation — I say right on, Jim.

Tom & Lorenzo have inspired me to watch “The Rachel Zoe Project” from time to time, although I find I can rarely get through an entire episode, because it’s more boring than a five-hour speech by Fidel Castro, and because the star and everyone around her uses the English language the same way we used those heavy metal records on Manuel Noriega — as an instrument of torture. She’s a happy abuser of “literally,” which she pronounces “lit’rully,” with a distinct pause at the apostrophe: Oh my god, I’m lit’rully dying here.

Zoe has a job that barely existed a generation ago — she’s a stylist, which means famous people pay her to tell them what to wear, and sometimes magazines pay her to dress their sets and models for photo shoots. If you want to know why we will never again see another Cher on the red carpet, it’s because of people like Zoe. How “stylist” became an actual job could be an interesting topic, encompassing some ideas of wide interest, particularly the rise of self-appointed grassroots fashion critics, people like Joan Rivers and bloggers like T-Lo, which has left chronically insecure Hollywood types terrified to put a foot wrong in their public outfits. Throw in the rise of paparazzi photography as a cultural force and marketing tool, branding as ninja practice and the freelanceification of everything, and you might have a decent show. Alas, Bravo’s producers settle for scene after scene of Zoe being driven around Los Angeles in a black SUV, moaning My head is lit’rully exploding, which must be their idea of Drama.

You have to look for the entertainment. I find it in the language.

Every occupation has its own jargon, and styling is no different. Take pull, for instance. Zoe’s minions do a pull before a shoot, which basically means they remove every single item from her cavernous closets and transport them to the shoot location (known as set, never with the definite article), where it’s all transferred to rolling racks and hangers shoved back and forth with much murmuring of she will so love this and this is so crazy sexy and I’m lit’rully dying over this one. That only two or three outfits are selected from this mobile garment district never seems to bother anyone, as it’s a given that you must have the widest possible selection of clothing to choose from. Why not leave everything on rolling racks, perhaps in a truck or something, and drive it around?

Because then it couldn’t be pulled, stupid. And pulling is a skill. Requiring many assistants.

Once pulled, Rachel will make her choices, adding some more of her nonsensical expressions of enthusiasm — bananas, maybe, or I die. Afterward, everything is pronounced fabulous. Nothing Zoe does is ever less than fabulous. A non-fabulous look, or an unhappy client, would make more interesting television, but that’s asking too much.

That’s episode outline 1A. Outline 1B is when Zoe is dressing a client for a red carpet event, known simply as carpet. What Anne Hathaway or Cameron Diaz or Jennifer Garner or Kate Hudson wears for carpet is an operation requiring a great deal of driving around, blabbing into phones, and perhaps some eyes-shut rubbing of the temples just before the commercial break, because OMG my head, it’s lit’rully killing me. But it always works out! Zoe and her minions gather to watch the Oscars or Emmys or Whatevers in her living room, the same way we do, only of course they pronounce all of Zoe’s clients so crazy sexy beautiful I lit’rully can’t stand it.

But even this isn’t enough to make me watch very often. I’m bananas that way.

And now, I must do a pull in my own closet. I predict — Carnack envelope to forehead — I will pull blue jeans with either a black or white top. Lit’rully the same thing I wear every day.

So let’s go to the bloggage, eh?

Ezra Klein: Could this time have been different? A look at where the stimulus went wrong, and right. HT: Cathy Dee.

More language nitpicking: The Occupy movement is cropping up in “scores of cities across Michigan.” No. A score = 20. Later in the story we hear that “nearly 20” Facebook pages have been created for Occupy events in the Mitten. Which would mean we’d have to see another 20 to have plural scores. Maybe I’m quibbling, but I don’t think so. Not lit’rully, anyway.

I still contend that “Occupy Detroit” is funny, and “Occupy the Upper Peninsula” is downright hilarious.

I’m so glad Charles Pierce is writing about politics. So, so glad. Lit’rully, very glad.

Off to office hours. Enjoy Thursday, all.

Posted at 9:49 am in Current events, Popculch |

78 responses to “Literally.”

  1. John C said on October 13, 2011 at 10:07 am

    Love, love, love the misuse of “literally.” My favorite example in movies is from the highly underrated movie “The Big Picture,” starring Kevin Bacon and directed by Christopher Guest before he started doing all the awesome Waiting for Guffman stuff. In the film, the young would-be director Kevin Bacon is starting to get too big for his britches, as his film has been optioned by some big Hollywood producer. He’s looking for a bigger place and when a freaky little landlord showing an apartment explains that he was once a director (or something) of some big shot’s Western movies. He was obviously tossed aside, reduced to managing apartments. His line is something like: “I MADE him, and then he crapped in my face, literally!”

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  2. Deborah said on October 13, 2011 at 10:13 am

    I’ve art directed a few photo shoots where a stylist was required by the photographer. I think they get a percentage of the take or something. It was always a royal pain and complete waste of money in my eyes. I usually had to completely redo what the stylist did. In architectural shots the stylist always tried to junk it up with silly props, horrifying the architects. Once or twice I did what could loosely be construed as fashion shots and experienced the stylists from hell, pushy, snarky and completely without aesthetic relevance to the subject. Sometimes they just sat around and yawned because they knew I’d do everything anyway. They still collected a fee too.

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  3. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 10:15 am

    Since Nancy is taking “score” literally, how ’bout decimate? I mean it has the “ten” actually built right in.

    If the stimulus went wrong, it went wrong for being pale, timid, niggardly, and no, that is not a comment on the idiot Herman Cain, Shiva, the destroyer of jobs. Actually there are pretty hafd facts indicating that things would be far more dire without the stimulus spending, and anybody not a cast in stone idealogue or dumber than grunt would see this as obvious.

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  4. coozledad said on October 13, 2011 at 10:16 am

    The last time I heard any NPR, Tom Friedman was on, shilling another one of his books for remedial readers. I knew who he was even before they said who he was. The mustache has gone audible.

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  5. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 13, 2011 at 10:22 am

    Occupy da UP, eh?

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  6. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 10:23 am

    John C. I love that movie.

    For a long time I thought the video girl was Pauley Perrette. I think she is Bridget Fonda. And Martin Short is hilarious:

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  7. Suzanne said on October 13, 2011 at 10:35 am

    Somebody, anybody occupying the UP would be news indeed!

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  8. nancy said on October 13, 2011 at 11:13 am

    I have misused “decimate” before. My excuse is that it’s become one of those expressions like “the lion’s share,” which has simply changed its meaning.

    (The lion’s share used to mean 100 percent. Now it means most. I’m not too bothered.)

    And I loved “The Big Picture,” too.

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  9. coozledad said on October 13, 2011 at 11:23 am

    Via Roy:
    Solidarity hero Lech Walesa is flying to New York to show his support for the Occupy Wall Street protesters.

    “How could I not respond,” Walesa told a Polish newspaper Wednesday. “The thousands of people gathered near Wall Street are worried about the fate of their future, the fate of their country. This is something I understand.”
    How will the Reagan blowers process this?

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  10. alex said on October 13, 2011 at 11:27 am

    The Ezra Klein piece was as disheartening as it was long. The Charles Pierce piece made my day. I don’t even waste my NYT alottment on David Brooks anymore.

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  11. Jeff Borden said on October 13, 2011 at 11:27 am

    I wonder if David Brooks is the Mitch Albom of political writing. But then, I think there is so much competition for the laziest navel-gazer in the chattering classes and I’m not sure it’s an honor for him alone. Suffice to say, Brooks is an enormous mediocrity, as are so many of the men and women who populate op-ed pages that were once home to real thinkers and writers like James Reston. When we visit my mother-in-law in Florida, where she subscribes to a local Scripps-Howard paper, I am likely to encounter such popcorn farts as Jonah Goldberg, Michelle Malkin, Kathryn Lopez, Thomas Sowell and other hacks whose work is beneath a reasonably decent high school paper.

    I think Brooks is particularly aggravating because he’s the kind of Albomesque douchebag who thinks visiting an Applebee’s gives him tremendous insight into the thoughts and dreams of proles. I no longer read his columns, but instead prefer the takedowns of his columns.

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  12. LAMary said on October 13, 2011 at 11:40 am

    I had a next door neighbor who was a stylist. She seemed to make a very good living at it too. She was just slightly less dramatic about things than RZ is. I will give her this: she was gluten intolerant long before anyone else I know. She was on the leading edge of horrible tasteless rice flour bread usage.

    EDIT: There is an auto club insurance commercial here with a woman saying “I called the auto club to ask about their rates and I literally fell out of my chair.”
    I say, don’t insure this woman, auto club. She’s drunk or narcoleptic. Keep her off the roads of California.

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  13. brian stouder said on October 13, 2011 at 11:53 am

    Well, here’s a credentialed, thinking, long-term positive economist who doesn’t like the president’s jobs bill:

    His lecture was, in my opinion, fatherly. He avoided outright condescension (did I spell that right), but there was an unmistakeable whiff of ‘this is the way it is, sons and daughters’, which I found mildly annoying.

    But the thing that struck me, on the way home, was that while this guy could be somewhat dire in his assessment of where we are, he didn’t sound like a Fox News/GOP professional Chicken Little, predicting game-ending gloom and doom.*

    To that extent, I liked him. (Plus, at question time, he got politiely worked over, which was pleasant to see)

    *edit – and indeed, on the evening’s program, his credits included CNBC, MSNBC, CNN, ABC…and no Fox. That may be a useful designation going forward – non-Fox Republicans (or what some would call “faux Republicans”, no doubt)

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  14. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    So, this Dunkelberg guy says “The government can’t fix (unemployment) other than to fix confidence and avoid scaring people to death.” He proceeds to make a vapid comparison between the US economy and the Greek. Nice scare tactic, ahole. It’s a historical, and incontrovertible fact that the government can put people to work, and has done so and it’s baseless and irrational to claim that government debt contributes to unemployment. What the guy calls out of control spending is dwarfed by the debt producing stupidity of the Bush tax cuts, and the insanity of invading and occupying Iraq. Business and industry do not want to be regulated for the good of Americans, so they will not invest in jobs so long as they can hold the unemployed hostage. Fairly simple, and grotesquely traitorous.

    Jobs? Not on the GOPer watch.

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  15. kayak woman said on October 13, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    You pull from a closet? I pull from a pile on the floor. In the dark, at this time of year. Lit’rully. (iPhone autocorrect tried to change that to “literally”. Lit’rully.)

    I am occupying a cluttered cubicle on the south side of the Planet Ann Arbor today but since I frequently occupy various parts of the UP, guess I better go check out that group.

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  16. Dorothy said on October 13, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    I have a question for you, Nancy, and I really am just curious, not being judgmental. Do you really wear either a black or white tee shirt/top every day (and I don’t mean literally – I’m speaking about the majority of the time). I heard that Jamie Lee Curtis decided a few years ago to just have black or white clothing, with blue jeans tossed in; she said it made it much easier to decide what to wear. I just don’t think I could do that – I like color so much! I like variety and I would get so weary of only black and white. My clothes last a long time, but I really get tired of the same shirts after 3-4 years. My husband bitches sometimes about how I don’t NEED new clothes. I don’t know how to explain to him it’s a WANT, not a NEED. I shop sales, I never pay full price – end of season clearances are my thing. Unless it’s a special occasion, and even then, I look for sales and use coupons like the ones Kohl’s or Penney’s sends me. Ladies…I’d appreciate hearing from others besides Nancy on this subject.

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  17. nancy said on October 13, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    You are free to judge all you like, Dorothy; I need judging.

    Every time I go shopping, I say to myself, “I wear too much black and white. Today, I WILL BUY COLOR.” Then I come home with another black sweater.

    I really need a Tim Gunn to give me a professional consultation. However, as a journalist, my impulse is always to fade into the woodwork and not draw attention to myself, and I think I have simply gotten stuck in a rut.

    I note, however, that over the years I’ve known many professional designers who wear some version of my uniform. Calvin Klein — jeans and T-shirt. Ralph Lauren — ditto. Donna Karan — black head to toe. It’s just easier that way.

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  18. Suzanne said on October 13, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    I find that as I get older, I wear a lot more black. It goes with just about everything, you can dress it up with a scarf or necklace, it’s flattering, and the past few years, it matches my mood. I do the bulk of my clothes shopping at resale shops; Goodwill on half price day is like visiting Valhalla.

    I wanted to attend the Dunkleberg lecture but couldn’t. I heard Sorkin and Galbraith in the past few years weigh in on the economic meltdown. I don’t know if the goverment can get us out of this mess, but that is what they did,in essence, during the Big One. WWII got things going, but wasn’t that really a government bailout, since weren’t all those tanks, planes, guns, bombs, etc. that factories manufactured and all those soldiers that were hired paid for by the federal government?

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  19. kayak woman said on October 13, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    Although it’s true that I often get dressed out of a pile on my floor, that’s my stash of walking clothes. I walk 6-ish every morning, so it’s a matter of layering for the weather. Doesn’t matter what color but most of my walking stuff is black.

    I also wear mostly black for bizcaz but use a lot of jewel tones with it. I HATE to shop. I HAVE to be comfortable. I’ve found a few online sources where the sizing is reliable for me. Chico’s being my favorite although I’m not crazy about their colors the last couple years. Taupe, beige, peach, and pale pink don’t do it for me. I NEVER discuss clothing purchases with my husband 🙂

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  20. John C said on October 13, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    Glad to see Martin Short’s part in the Big Picture is appreciated. That clip was awesome. Better, I think, was the phone-slamming diva scene in his office. “Why?!” he yell-whines into the receiver. “Because nobody calls me a DOUCHE-bag!” SLAM.
    I also loved the movie ideas … “Abe and the Babe”
    Don’t know who the video actress was. But the lead singer of Pez People was, of course, Michael “David St. Hubbins” Mac-however-you-spell-his-name. Lenny. (or was it Squiggy).

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  21. coozledad said on October 13, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    WWII was a massive public works project. The manufacturing sector loved the federal money, but could barely disguise their feeling we were on the wrong side.

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  22. Bitter Scribe said on October 13, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    One of the (very few) perks of being a man in late middle age is, not only does no one care how you dress, you’re not expected to dress too well. Khakis, dress shirts and a couple of suits get me through every occasion I need getting through.

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  23. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 13, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    Hey, Bill Dunkelberg – he used to be an econ prof at Purdue. Couldn’t go to his left, tough on defense, but a nice mid-range jumpshot. I could beat him down the court, but he was usually where the ball was when it came off the boards, and I’d be on the wrong side of the lane. Hard to learn skill, but if you’ve got it, you just give thanks. I have to work for all my rebounds.

    Can’t tell you what he was like in the classroom; never took a class from him, but he was a regular at the Co-Rec gyms looking for a pickup game.

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  24. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    Dunkelberg’s comments re the jobs bill only creating government job kills me. Teachers, cops, and firefighters always get mentioned because they are visible and, generally, popular. But the range of government work is enormous–sanitation workers, food inspectors, building inspectors, DMV staff, social workers, judges, environmental protection staffers–the list is endless. It drives me nuts that all this valuable work–and the workers who do it–get slurred as “government work.” The work needs to be done, the people who do it need to be paid, and, when they spend their salaries, other people get paid. Why is this so hard to understand, and why is it so hard for GOP legislators to support?

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  25. Jeff Borden said on October 13, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    Cooz, you might appreciate this.

    I was driving to Des Plaines yesterday morning to teach my public speaking class, one of the two low-paying adjunct jobs I have until mid-December that pay no benefits, health care, etc. In front of me was a Lexus SUV with two bumper stickers. One was an anti-Obama sticker, which is fine by me.

    The other, however, raised hackles on me that I didn’t know I had. In the center of his tailgate, the sticker read: “Don’t distribute my wealth. Distribute my work ethic.”

    The smugness inherent in that simple statement was overwhelming. There are millions of us out there who are busting our asses to find a full-time job, who are grateful for the part-time work we can find, who have invested thousands into additional education or training so that we might be more attractive to employers and who still find ourselves on the outside looking in, but in the worldview of this fucking prick, if I had his work ethic, I’d be living the northwest suburbs and driving a $60,000 gas guzzler, too. Where in the hell did this asshole get the idea that the unemployed and the underemployed are in those positions because we lack a work ethic? Is this shitheel the hellspawn of Ayn Rand and Eric Cantor?

    I’m extraordinarily lucky to have a spouse who makes a good salary and has great health care benefits –she works for a Swiss company, btw– but what of those who do not? Perhaps the Lexus driver can be implored to share some of his work ethic with others, though I’m guessing he’d rather blow Barack Obama than do so.

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  26. Linda said on October 13, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    Jeff B,stuff like that makes me want to blow a fuse. I have a brother who works like a mule in confined spaces/hazmat/sewage cleanup. He works 12 to 18 hour days, and many of the factories of metro Detroit would be closed without his skill and sweat. And he makes less than Friedman, Brooks, et al. But he adds more value to society in a shift than those losers do in their lives.

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  27. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    Deborah, what is art direction? I have only the vaguest understanding of what the people who have such titles actually do.

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  28. Julie Robinson said on October 13, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    Why are so many women afraid of color? Those colors (lack of color, I’d call them) are depressing.

    Terry Gross interviewed David Woods today about his series, Beyond the Battlefield, which is running on Huffington Post. Normally I wouldn’t send anyone there but this is original work, not cut & paste from someone else’s website. From what I hear on air, it’ll be a must-read when I have more time.

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  29. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    Is anyone here using the Facebook for Android app? If I get a yes, I’ll pose my question. Otherwise, no need to clutter up the space.

    Also, I typed the comment above re jobs, in which there’s a subject/verb agreement error on my phone. I’m deeply embarrassed, but claim mitigating circumstances. Reviewing and correcting text on that tiny screen is difficult. Still, having begun my computer-using career in the era of punch cards, I get a tremendous kick out of seeing what these gadgets can do.

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  30. alex said on October 13, 2011 at 2:43 pm


    I’ve heard that women are afraid of color because about twenty years ago some fashion writer came up with some faddish notion about everyone being a different “season.” (I think this was probably a fashion industry ploy to make women pitch entire wardrobes and buy new. It worked.) Brunettes were “winters” and their complexions and hair would never allow them to wear yellow or orange without looking hideous. Blondes were “springs” and their complexions and hair would never allow navy blue or bright red. Well, because most blondes aren’t really blonde and a lot of brunettes aren’t brunette, and their hair is all wrong for their complexion or vice versa, there’s a lot of confusion about what color looks good or doesn’t. Black always looks good.

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  31. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 2:45 pm

    On clothes, I used to spend a tremendous amount of time and money on clothes and collected lots of compliments. Now that I am no longer young and, ahem, no longer thin, I go with whatever is easiest, and mostly everything looks the same.

    One of my grad school professors–a man–said that everything in his wardrobe had to go with everything else. Apparently, he didn’t want to devote any of his brain cells to making actual choices early in the day.

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  32. coozledad said on October 13, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    Jeff Borden: When I see bumperstickers like that on vehicles like that, it’s the only time I think Freud was on the money. Particularly the concepts of wish fulfillment and the wresting of the hockeystick from the father.
    I know the only reason why states don’t print vanity plates like I,DICK! is because they don’t want a bunch of farts camping out at the DMV.

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  33. Sue said on October 13, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    Jeff Borden, I call no fair on your blanket dis of the NW suburbs. We (well, not me anymore, just all my relatives) get to live with the segment of the population that you describe everyday, so have a little sympathy.
    You think we (well, not me anymore) are all like that, drive through Rolling Meadows sometime.

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  34. Dorothy said on October 13, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    So your grad school professor was a fan of the Garanimal line of clothing?!

    I use Facebook on my Droid phone, Jolene, so ask away.

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  35. Jeff Borden said on October 13, 2011 at 3:15 pm


    No slur was intended on the suburbs, northwest or otherwise. I was mimicking what I imagine the kind of lout who would put a bumper sticker like that on his fancy car would think, not my feelings. I love living in the city and am willing to pay the price for our residence here, but I completely understand and appreciate why so many people choose to live in the suburbs. Also, I’m very well aware that living in the suburbs is no indication of wealth, conservative politics, etc. If I offended, it was completely by accident.

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  36. Heather said on October 13, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    I work on the side as a personal stylist (for “regular” women, not celebrities), and there’s nothing wrong with having a simple color palette, as long as you like it. There’s a difference between liking color and wanting to wear it. I do like some bright colors but I don’t like to wear them near my face–it’s like wearing red lipstick. Too much. So I have something orange, but it’s a skirt. I mainly wear gray and navy, with some purple and green mixed in there. By the way, if you like bright colors, wear them with gray instead of black. The contrast is a little softer.

    My advice is, never talk to your husband/boyfriend about clothes (and how much they cost). Of course you don’t “need” them. We could all be walking around in workman’s coveralls if clothing were so unimportant (and I bet the guys would just love that). But it’s about more than just keeping warm and covering your nakedness. As long as you’re not blowing the rent on your wardrobe, buy what you like and don’t feel guilty about it.

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  37. Julie Robinson said on October 13, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    On the side I am the stylist for my husband, who is beyond clueless about colors. I put together all his suit, shirt & tie combinations. It’s a big relief to him and lots of fun for me. The moment when I find a new combination is when I jump up and down and wet my pants like a little girl. Then reality bites and I have to iron the darn things.

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  38. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    Thanks, Dorothy. My problem is simple. I can’t adjust the text size in the FB for Android app. The pinch-and-stretch method doesn’t work, and I can’t find a setting that would do it.

    If I open FB in a browser (I’m using Dolphin.), changing the text size works as w/ any other web page, but I’d like to be able to use the app.

    Garanimals are new to me, but, yes, that was his idea.

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  39. Dorothy said on October 13, 2011 at 3:55 pm

    Hmmmmm… someone more “techie” than I would be able to answer that better for you. All I know is it reads all right on my screen. My phone was purchased in July of this year – it’s a Motorola. If I can’t read text on it I double tap the screen and it adjusts automatically. Can you ask someone at the store where you bought it?

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  40. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    A couple of days ago, James Fallows published a great list of recent news articles on the economy. He included the Klein* piece that Nancy linked to, a piece by Joe Nocera, who always has smart things to say, and some other pieces as well. Very much worth checking out.

    *Klein is a real smarty-pants. He’s under 30, I’m pretty sure, and just really good at explaining and analyzing domestic economic issues. He has a liberal bent, but he’s always closely tied to data, which he often presents in clear graphs. If you’re not already following his Wonkbook blog, it’s worth adding to your list. There’s so much news on these topics these days (and so much need to separate fact from fiction) that the Post has actually hired three underbloggers to work with him. Pretty impressive in an age of media downsizing.

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  41. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 4:06 pm

    Can you ask someone at the store where you bought it?

    Yes, it looks like I’ll have to go back there. (The phone is an HTC Sensation from T-Mobile. Have been very happy w/ their customer service, so wanted to stay w/ them.) Am reasonably good at figuring these things out on my own, but I need to make a list of the things I haven’t figured out and talk w/ them again.

    Speaking of phones, Amazon is running a sale in which they are practically giving away up-to-date smart phones if you initiate a new Verizon contract. If you were thinking of switching companies, seems like this would be a great deal.

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  42. Little Bird said on October 13, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    Both Deborah and I wear primarily black. Her with white and occasionally some citrusy greens, me with orange or hot pink. Black is classic, simple, and easy to find.
    By the way, she LOVED all the birthday wishes, it really made her day!

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  43. Joe Kobiela said on October 13, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    In ww-2 Americans bought over 185 BILLION in war bonds, that went a long way into funding the war. Perhapse we should do that again.
    Pilot Joe

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  44. Deborah said on October 13, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    Another reason to wear black: it gives your body a distinct edge, like an outline, which is slimming. I have white hair so it contrasts nicely with black too. Sometimes I wear scarves, mostly in the winter I have many bright solid colored wool scarves that I wear with my black coats.

    Jolene, an art director on a photo shoot tells the photographer what the final use of the photo will be and finesses the look and feel of the shots to match what they will be used for (in a brochure or whatever). An art director in graphic design in general sets the overall concept for a project, sets the overall tone and feel and reviews the work of the designers who carry out the layout and production. Design companies sometimes call it something else like “creative director”. But usually a creative director is over an art director and is responsible for the overall design quality of the whole works not just individual projects. At my company I’m called a design director which is the same thing as a creative director. I’m ultimately responsible for the design quality of my whole group (only 6 people now).

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  45. brian stouder said on October 13, 2011 at 5:11 pm

    Joe, that’s a good point – and indeed – remember that government bonds are still public debt, regardless who buys them.

    The scare-story thread is always – “Will anyone buy our debt?” and/or “What happens when no one will buy our debt?”.

    But everytime the market falls and fear ascends, where do investers run? Where do they park their money? – in US treasury bonds.

    Dunkelberg, the economist we heard from last night, takes this a step further and considers the fact that the Chinese (for example) “accept” our US dollars in exchange for their finished goods is, in itself, a loan – or an act of faith; they’re betting that the dollar will retain value.

    I say – I’d sooner worry about an asteroid smashing into Indiana, than whether or not foreign countries will accept US dollars for their goods.

    Hell, if the day comes that other nations won’t accept US dollars, then I bet we’d see US domestic industry revive and prosper

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  46. MichaelG said on October 13, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    Deborah, I seem to recall you mentioning being involved with sculpture in public places. Have you seen any pictures of the immense red rabbit sculpture at Sacramento airport’s new terminal B?

    I passed through last Thurs, the first day it was open, and took a couple of pictures. Then I passed through again yesterday and today. I’ve decided after three passes that I like the rabbit and that I like the new terminal. They spent a billion on the place and erected a huge, monumental edifice. I wondered about spending so much money and building something so big and so vulnerable to criticisms of being pretentious but I like it. Public buildings used to be big and imposing and then we started building city halls that look like bank buildings, other buildings that look like shopping centers and too many of them that look like nothing. In the end I’m happy that Sacto built a big ambitious airport terminal. It’s SMF its own self and not some generic joint.

    Tomorrow’s my turn through the birthday turnstile. I’ll be 67. Jeez. That makes me positively elderly. The other day I was laughing on the phone with somebody. I had forgotten something and mentioned that I must be coming down with early onset dementia. Then I relized that it’s a bit late come down with early onset anything.

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  47. brian stouder said on October 13, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    Then I relized that it’s a bit late come down with early onset anything.

    Best laugh of the thread!

    and, Happy Birthday, Michael G

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  48. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    Did I mention that I love the title of yesterday’s blog. Spirit of 1576. So, so good for so many reasons.

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  49. Deborah said on October 13, 2011 at 6:00 pm

    Michael G, I was only in the Sacramento airport once about a year ago. I like the big red rabbit from the pictures you linked to. I call those kinds of things American Colossal, people tend to like to see big stuff, things that are meant to be small or normal sized blown up to giant size. You see it all over roadside America. People also like to see gigantic things made little bitty like architectural models and other miniatures. And when all else fails make it red, what we always say is, “make it red and put a star on it”.
    Happy birthday.

    edit: and Michael G, I’m with you on the public buildings, they should have a civic presence that lives up to the scale of the city.

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  50. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    John C, we agree that that is one great movie. I tend to like Kevin Bacon. I thought Hollow Man and the Echos one were frightening. And I thought the River Wild was a very good Meryl movie. Kevin is a good villain. I did think footloose wa asisnine and a remake gratuitous.

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  51. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 6:10 pm

    The movie with Kevin Bacon as the vile kidnapper and Dakota Fanning and Courtney Love , and the Astronaut’s Wife, where she secretes the scalpel in her asscheeks. That’s good too.

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  52. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 6:14 pm

    Oh, and anybody that doesn’t think Tremors is brilliant is an idiot, Valentine rules. And the plan was brilliant. An absolutely great movie.

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  53. brian stouder said on October 13, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    Tremors was indeed brilliant; and again, the sequel was pointless

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  54. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    Brian, For sure. But the original was ridiculously good. And Fred Ward is a treasure, Aussie or no,

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  55. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    Running the worm into concrete was spectacular. This was a great movie. No way you get better than that.

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  56. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 6:39 pm

    Amazing. Poor man’s Leo. Very good actor.

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  57. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    When I was a little kid, My mom and dad were Kennedy Democrats. I grew up believing in that vision. I think Obama is the living belief in that ideal of America. The belief and for sure, the long lasting guarantee of Martin. What’s so funny ’bout Peace Love and Understanding? This doesn’t seem difficult to understand. GOPers are trying to do away with the vote. These people are institutional racists. We can’t let them get away with this. These people are anti-Americans, and they are anti Americans. What a bunch of swine.

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  58. Joe Kobiela said on October 13, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    Michael G,
    Cool rabbits, Did they really spend a Billion on the place or is that just a slight exageration? Did you know that the majority of the money spent at airports is funded by the tax that is collected on fuel salesfrom general aviation and your ticket price? So runway expantion and air trafic control facilitys are more or less self funded. The present administration would like you to believe otherwise, but those greedy corp jet owners are actually paying for their own services, more or less. So if Mr Obama has his way, and makes it to expensive to fly corp, the fuel sales tax goes down, but the funding will stay the same. Where do you think the money will come from then?
    Pilot Joe

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  59. caliban said on October 13, 2011 at 7:28 pm

    Really, are we kidding. That tax plan is bullshit. No shi, that is loonytunes, Fuck these whackos. Imposing a 9% tax on normal people is so fucking bullshit regressive, it;s spectacular, where do these assholes get off. You have to be kidding. These are crooks and you can’t be kidding.

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  60. brian stouder said on October 13, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    Did you know that the majority of the money spent at airports is funded by the tax that is collected on fuel salesfrom general aviation and your ticket price?

    Yes, I knew that.

    And, I bet YOU know that the Republican majority in congress has been bent on shutting down the FAA – and with it the collection of those taxes and the continuation of those air traffic controllers and those runway improvements.

    Or, maybe they’re just bent, in general.

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  61. moe99 said on October 13, 2011 at 7:39 pm

    Happy birthday Michael G. Hope the candles fit on your cake!

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  62. ellent said on October 13, 2011 at 8:13 pm

    Back to clothes. I almost always wear black pants/skirt with white or black tee almost every day, with chunky necklaces for kohl’s or macy’s or scarves and, in cool weather, a cardigan in pink, blue, red, etc. Makes it affordable to dress on a teacher salary. Mix things up with the odd print or pants/skirt/dress in some other color on one day/week. Friday is jeans day.

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  63. baldheadeddork said on October 13, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    @Pilot Joe – I’m an ex-ramp rat and as big a supporter of GA as you’ll find anywhere, but it’s a hell of a stretch to connect the end of a special tax break for corporate jet operators to The End Of Airport Improvements As We Know It.

    What Obama proposed was a change to the depreciation rule on corporate aircraft. Right now corporate operators have an accelerated depreciation schedule compared to airlines. (Even though the market shows that corporate aircraft depreciate much more slowly than airliners.) All the president proposed was changing that to match what commercial operators use.

    Also, the underlying argument that GA pays a disproportionate amount of the revenue into the trust fund is pure fiction. Taxes collected from non-Part 121 (non-scheduled carrier operations) fuel sales don’t even pay for the upkeep at airports without commercial service. In 2010, the Trust Fund tax collected on all fuel sales (which includes taxes paid by commercial carriers) was $632 million. The surcharge on passengers, freight and international facilities was ten billion.

    When it comes to airport construction and upkeep, it’s all the people on the other side of the field from the FBO’s who are keeping the lights on.

    FAA AATF Historical Data page:

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  64. Julie Robinson said on October 13, 2011 at 9:53 pm

    Hope your birthday is a good one, MichaelG. Mine is later this month, only 55, but I got a letter from our governor yesterday urging me to buy long-term care insurance. Has anyone else gotten one of these? It sounds like a scam to me. A legal scam, but still a scam. A public/private scam, to be specific. You tell them you want info, they hook you up with a carefully selected and trained insurance individual. Wait, I mean, they refer you. I’m kinda outraged, the more I think about it.

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  65. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 13, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    Happy birthday, MichaelG; and for BrianS at #45 —

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  66. Linda said on October 13, 2011 at 10:32 pm

    People, this is entirely OT, but too funny to pass up. Made me laugh hard enough to snort:

    Too bad Roseanne Rosannadanna is not around to moderate these debates.

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  67. brian stouder said on October 13, 2011 at 10:40 pm

    Jeff – excellent! I’ll take the once-in-97,000,000 years odds, every time (not that we have a choice whether an asteroid will again strike Indiana, but still!)

    edit – Linda – that is a very funny link! It’s enough to induce knit brows for all supporters of Ron Paul

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  68. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 10:46 pm

    Mitch is probably just trying to save money on future Medicaid patients, Julie. A great deal of nursing home care is paid for by Medicaid, as many people don’t have long-term care insurance, and most people would very shortly run out of cash if they had to pay for their own care.

    It’s all part of the problem of paying for end-of-life care. Karen Tumulty posed a very good question on this serious issue in Tuesday’s GOP debate, but, of course, Newt Gingrich turned the whole topic into an explosive discussion, again invoking death panels.

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  69. Jolene said on October 13, 2011 at 11:06 pm

    Was looking to see what M. Obama wore to tonight’s state dinner (a gorgeous dress, of course), but also found a great pic of her at the jumping jacks event on the WH lawn a couple of days ago. (She hosted an event to be part of a global effort to earn a place in the Guinness Book of World Records by having the most people doing jumping jacks in a 24-hour period. All part of the Let’s Move initiative.

    Scroll down to the second pic of that event. The picture of her celebrating w/ a pack of kids around her is just terrific.

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  70. brian stouder said on October 13, 2011 at 11:17 pm

    Jolene, those are definitely marvelous photos!

    I must say – rube that I am – I found the photos of the place-settings at the state dinner table to be intimidating.

    I think I could wing my way through using the correct utensils that are east and west of the plate, but the opposing utensils to the north of the plate baffled me! (I’d probably foul that operation up worse than Perry would!)

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  71. Crazycatlady said on October 13, 2011 at 11:56 pm

    My daughter and I are going to ‘Occupy Detroit’ tomorrow. I taught her to question authority to which she commented “Who are you to tell me what to do?” Lesson Learned.

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  72. caliban said on October 14, 2011 at 3:48 am

    Remember a while back when social and literary critics pronounced irony passe or dead? Well this development may stick the barbecue fork in it. Crazycatlady, you go. Perfectly sane.

    Let’s not forget that Michelle is obese according to the expert on obesity Rush Limbaugh. This is the bizarre GOPer take on things. What is wrong with these people? Beyond comprehension hatred and anybody that claims this isn’t racial is some rare sort of nitwit.

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  73. caliban said on October 14, 2011 at 6:58 am

    Perry lies his ass off.

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  74. caliban said on October 14, 2011 at 7:12 am

    Miggy and Verlander rule. Ovechkin sucks. And he can’t win a game unless Crosby doesn’t play,

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  75. Dorothy said on October 14, 2011 at 7:22 am

    Happy birthday Michael G! And Deborah I was thinking of you lots last night because I was in the ER. I fell, slipping on wet leaves, as I walked to my car last night after work. I thought I had possibly broken my left knee and/or my right ankle. Both were extremely painful. I managed to drive the 4.5 miles home but called my husband, whimpering and asking him to come right home. He got the dogs walked and we went straight to the hospital. Thankfully, nothing is broken. My knee is extremely swollen and the ankle is quite achy, but I am limping around this morning. I had already planned today as a vacation day because the play I’m directing opens tonight. I was supposed to be going shopping for something fun to wear tonight. I guess the crowd coming to see “Wait Until Dark” will not find the director dazzling in her old skirt and blouse (possibly black and white!).

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  76. coozledad said on October 14, 2011 at 7:38 am

    The present administration would like you to believe otherwise, but those greedy corp jet owners are actually paying for their own services, more or less. So if Mr Obama has his way, and makes it to expensive to fly corp, the fuel sales tax goes down, but the funding will stay the same. Where do you think the money will come from then?


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  77. alex said on October 14, 2011 at 7:53 am

    I must say – rube that I am – I found the photos of the place-settings at the state dinner table to be intimidating.

    You’d have nothing to worry about, Brian. Dubya groped Angela Merckel and his dad puked on the prime minister of Japan, which gives you a whole lot of latitude to use the wrong fork, methinks.

    Happy birthday MichaelG and get well soon Dorothy. At least we’re being spared the other hazard of fall—acorns on the ground that make venturing outdoors tantamount to walking on marbles—as it’s an every other year phenomenon. Around here it is, anyway.

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  78. Dorothy said on October 14, 2011 at 8:29 am

    I come across the acorns in the back part of our acreage when I walk our dogs, alex, and I’ve had to tread v-e-r-y carefully. Never thought of it being like walking on marbles – that’s dead on!

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