Escape (to One Fifth Avenue)

May 21, 2010

 

  Just finished reading One Fifth Avenue by Candace Bushnell. I purchased the copy back in August (while employed, lol) for a trip to Montreal. I never cracked it open, set it aside when I got home, and just found it on Mother’s Day weekend. Bushnell is responsible for the mega-hit series “Sex and the City”, which I loved. She also wrote “Lipstick Jungle” which inspired a short-lived network series starring Brooke Shields. It’s too bad the season finale turned out to be the series finale – it was good.    

With that background, you should have an idea that this was definitely a “fluff” book – made purely for escaping and mentally placing yourself into another location entirely. Perfect vacation or beach/pool book. I couldn’t put it down!    

The dust jacket says:    

In One Fifth Avenue, Bushnell tells the intertwined stories of five women at one swanky Manhattan address. One Fifth is the building – the chicest, the hottest, the one with the best pedigree. And within its gorgeous pre-war walls, fortunes fall and rise in the early days of the new millennium. Here, as in her previous novels, Bushnell turns a gimlet eye on the social and sexual politics of New York’s elite, this time through the lens of where they live.     

The characters run the gamut from a 22-year-old over-indulged young woman, obsessed with everything material, new to the New York scene,  to elderly, old-monied spinsters with nothing better to do than gather gossip and perpetuate old grudges. Seeing how Bushnell winds the characters lives with one another, in the search for greater fame, wealth, and happiness was captivating. I couldn’t help but like, and root for the less than perfect characters. I found the story of Billy Litchfield, not a One Fifth resident, the most intriguing. He knew the ins and outs of the social scene, and exactly how to manipulate the players. With just the right level of drama, whimsy and malice, One Fifth Avenue is a must read – perfect for summer!    

What’s your book recommendation?


Warning: Rant Alert

May 17, 2010

Thanks, Satori.org for the image...

 

 Things I probably will never understand:    

Low rise athletic shorts: Really? I spend half my energy keeping my drawers up! The last thing anyone at the gym, grocery store, hardware store, nail salon (yes, I wear shorts everywhere) needs to see is my bum. It’s even whiter than my blindingly un-tanned legs (plus, it’s darned big)!    

Telemarketers, asking for money, that are rude. Okay, here’s the deal: I have something you want. Or at least you THINK I have something you want. Don’t you think it would be wise to at least be nice, and make an attempt to pronounce my name properly? And if you can’t properly say my name, ask or don’t try to use it. It’s a lot less offensive than bumbling it up and acting as if someone has that name in real life.    

Bad Drivers. This is a whole category, so here’s just a couple:    

  • People who enter the freeway at 35 mph. Clearly, the driving test was not available in their native language: MORON. Same goes for those that insist on sidegating you. Also those lovelies that hang out in the fast lane at 55 when the speed limit is at least 10 mph faster. And don’t get me started on the electric car owners that drive solo in the carpool lane (legally), barely faster than the regular lanes. I swear they think they are incognito cops, saving the rest of the world from the woes of going the speed limit (or a touch above). Step on the gas or get out of my way people! Didn’t anyone ever tell you the carpool lane should be treated as an Autobahn?
  • The neighbor that parks in “your” spot on the street. Yep, every day for 10 years and they still haven’t figured it out? Oh, and listen: hear that? It’s the car alarm for the car she’s had forever. Goes off all the time. And no – it’s an early 90’s mini-van, so no one is attempting to steal it. In fact, I think she might be grateful if someone stole it! (No one even locks our cars in this neighborhood, anyway.)

My husband claiming he doesn’t know where the dishes go. Seriously? Pal, you’ve lived here as long as me. You found them to cook/eat. Tell the truth – you just didn’t WANT to unload the dishwasher & load your dirty dishes from when I was gone. The up side? It looks as if he ate fairly well while I was gone. Hmm… Guess that’s not really an upside where the dishes and me are concerned.    

Recorded political messages. Unless you’re someone uber-famous, I don’t want your recording bugging me. If you’re a celebrity, it’s kind of fun for me to say “Dustin Hoffman called my house last night”. (He didn’t really. The last one I remember was Arnie when he wanted to be Governator.) The novelty wears off quickly though.    

TV ads for politicians. I think if those were banned, we might end up with decent people running things. Voters would be forced to read about what each candidate stands for. Either that or vote based on name or what kind of pattern you can make with hanging chads. Either way, I think we’d be better off.    

from Microsoft Clip Art

 

 Adults’ obsessions with tween/teen things. Examples include Twilight (ghost/vampire stories in general), Harry Potter, Miley Cyrus, Jonas Brothers, et al. I’m not really judging, but I just don’t get it. Actually, what I don’t get is the need to attempt to convince non-kool-aid-drinking friends into loving it all. You people are worse (in that regard) than the door to door religion recruiters! So if you’re my friend – shut it! I don’t force my opinions on you (verbally anyway).   

  The letter carrier who doesn’t take outgoing mail from the mailbox. Yes, you can see it. Unless it’s every other Monday, chances are really good that it’s your fault it’s there – BECAUSE IT WAS MISDELIVERED! The rest of the time – it’s simple. I am sending someone something. Isn’t it your job to take it to the post office? How about you get off your cell phone and pay attention? That’s what the rest  most of  the world does when they work.   

What’s up with products that include contradictory instructions? I not so recently bought a down comforter. It was relatively cheap inexpensive. The outer packaging said it could be machine washed/dried (ultra-handwash of course). The tag on the comforter says no. The whole reason I bought it was because I was supposed to be able to wash it. Well, that and to keep warm. So I’ve washed it. A few times (so there!). And it lived. Sure it probably leaked some feathers, but we’re in SoCal. We didn’t need ’em.    

(Guess what – I’ve ripped the tags off my mattress too! Shhh—- don’t tell!)  


Why?

March 18, 2010

Why a blog?

Sometimes Facebook and Twitter just don’t get it done. I feel like many of my followers and friends probably don’t want to see everything I want to talk about. I know some of my friends are totally over my hockey addiction. Plus, I want to expand on those thought. Also, I want to keep a journal of little life events.  I want a place where I can post my thoughts and opinions without apology. Too bad if you don’t agree! Life would be soooo boring if we were all the same. Additionally, I’ve enjoyed the communities within Facebook and Twitter, and have seen (from the outside) the community in the blogging world. I like people, so why not meet more to like?!

Why the name “Bitten By Reality”?

I have always loved the title of the movie “Reality Bites” – because oftentimes it does! I find humor in life’s annoyances. And if I can’t laugh, I figure it this will be a great place to rant. For example, today I realized someone stole our “no soliciting” sign from our front door. Who DOES that? Solicitors? It was pretty cool – it was more than just a “no soliciting” sign.  And there I go… off on a tangent. I know I have a tendency towards ADD. Let’s check it out & see where it takes us!

Why now?

What took me so long to jump on the blog-wagon, you mean? I have followed a few blogs for some time, but I wondered who would care about what I have to say? After much thought, it turns out I don’t care who cares. I was laid off in September ’09 and need to keep my writing skills sharp. (The experience from a marketing standpoint is also a huge bonus.) Plus, it’s a challenge. Now that I’m off work, I’m faced with few strong challenges. (What’s for dinner? How do I make my sewing machine function? Can I overcome my fear of spiders? Can I handle the traffic to Staples Center multiple times a week?) It is a way for me to embrace my IMperfect life!

So, that’s what this little corner of the web is all about. Hit me up – I would love to hear from anyone reading this!