Marriage

2013: Bombshell. Marathon. Pen Pals.

2012

Last Year, instead of resolutions, I had two themes, and I called it the "Year of Good Health and Money." There were quite a few goals to accomplish in those areas, but my main focus for the year was getting my health in order and getting our family's finances under control. I give myself a B for Good Health. I worked out pretty regularly for six months and then came to a dead stop, but I got my supplementation worked out, got my anemia under control, found a new dentist, and lost 20 pounds. I give myself an A for Money. I cut expenses, took care of some scary tax stuff, eliminated our credit card debt, and created a budget for 2013 that allows me to continue to work for myself.

2013

This year, as I was contemplating my themes (I was leaning toward Vanity and Business), I came across Chris Brogan's Brave New Year program. It takes my themes idea and goes so much deeper. I am going to accomplish big things this year and I am going to need guidance to do it. So, I joined up.

Similar to my themes, is Chris's idea of three words for the year. The three words you choose provide a framework for your goals and, ultimately, all of your actions throughout the year. As with last year, before making a big decision, or when I finding myself stuck, I will ask myself how does what I am doing right now align with my three words. If it doesn't, then I need to do something else.

My Three Words

Bombshell

There are two definitions of "bombshell." First is something that is sensational, shocking, surprising, or amazing. Second is a very attractive woman.

I hope that I am able to balance my vanity and narcissism with my intelligence, humor, and generosity, but that doesn't make me any less vain. The part of "Good Health" that I failed last year was physical fitness. Fitness is measurable, but it's impact on my overall health is not as apparent, so it was easier to focus on the things I could see measured with a simple blood test.

I know myself very well and I know that appealing to my sense of vanity is one way to get me to do something. (Now you know it, too.) Working out (to fit into a smaller size, to be more attractive, to have slimmer legs) and taking better care of my skin (so my face is prettier), and eating well (to slim down, to keep my hair shiny, to keep my skin clear) are going to be easier for me to do on a regular basis if I think about how it makes me look in the near term rather than how it affects my health in the long term. Is that messed up? Yes, but that's how I work.

Going back to the first definition. I intend to be the sort of person who makes an impact. I am going to be introducing my company and our products to many people this year. I am going to be asking a lot of people for their advice, or assistance, or money. I intend to leave those people amazed and impressed so that they want to do business with me.

Marathon

This word is not about running, it is about continually moving and doing. I intend to accomplish big goals this year and the only way I am going to get that done is continue to take the next step, even when I don't want to, even when it hurts, even if I am pretty sure I am going to fall on my ass when I do.

If I let myself get overwhelmed by the size of my goals or the length of my task list, I freeze. I get stuck where I am and I do not move foward. This word is to remind me that I can't stop. Yes, the goal is big and the steps to get there are many, but I only need to take one at a time. When I am starting to feel overwhelmed, I need to pull back from the big goal for a bit and focus on the next step. A crucial piece to this is to have a well defined plan so that I always know what the next step is.

This word is also here to help me get through those tasks that I simply do not want to do. As co-founder of a bootstrapped startup, there are a lot of those tasks for me to do right now. We don't have the funds to hire someone else to do them.

Pen Pals

This word took the longest for me to decide. I was looking for something about developing deeper relationships with people in my network. I have built a broad network, but I tend to maintain only shallow relationships with the people in it. Sadly, this includes family and friends.

I rely on social media so much for communication because it is quick and easy, but it also allows me to continue on with shallow interactions. Writing real letters is something that I used to love to do, and it enabled me to get to know someone more personally, and share more of myself. I had a pen pal in Lithuania when I was in grade school. I remember so many details of her life, and I can still picture her unique style of printing.

This word is not about having literal pen pals. It is included in this list to remind me to go deeper with my communications. I intend to form deeper relationships with the people in my personal and business networks, no matter the method we use most to communicate.

Your Turn

Do you make resolutions for the year? Do you set goals? Have themes? Make vision boards? Want to try this three words thing? I'd love to hear about it.


Secret Marriages

I read Dooce's post today about splitting up with her husband. I've been reading her blog for years and years. I never thought her marriage would end. She and her husband knew each other so well, were so in love, put so much work into their marriage.

It made me wonder, how much I really knew about their lives and their marriage and their issues. Dooce is so open about everything, maybe it gave me a false sense of knowledge, of knowing her. Bloggers show you only what they want you to see, but that isn't any different from anyone else. Two other bloggers I admire split with their husbands in the past year. One has found a fantastic new husband. The other has only just started picking up the pieces. Friends of mine are divorcing and it is ugly and cruel in a way that makes me question our friendship.

Maybe the problem is not keeping the truth about your marriage from the world, but keeping it from yourself. When I compare my marriage to the ones I admire, mine seems to fall short, but I am looking at mine with unflinching honesty, not through the veneer required for publication. Even so, I do have a public marriage and a secret marriage, but it's not because I have anything to hide, it's because there are two people in my marriage and that story isn't mine alone to tell.


The Hump List: Yuletide Edition

Fictional-men

The reason the Hump List needs to be updated a couple times a year isn't because my tastes change, it's more like, "Out of sight, out of mind." If I haven't seen a humpee in a movie or on TV in awhile, I tend to forget about him.

Have you never heard of a Hump List? It goes by several names. I used to call it the Freebie List, but I prefer the more vulgar Hump List. I'm a classy, classy lady. This is a list of the five celebrities with whom my husband will allow me to have sex, should the opportunity arise. I like to pretend that, since I live in Southern California and I have friends who are actors and producers, this might actually happen one day. That is why I am so diligent about having an up-to-date list.

Humpee: Justin Timberlake, Hump List alum
Recent appearances in which he was hot: Friends With Benefits, In Time

Justin-timberlake-20071121-341231

Humpee: Ian Somerhalder, Hump List newbie
Recent appearance in which he was hot: The Vampire Diaries

Ian_somerhalder_1

Humpee: Henry Cavill, Hump List alum
Recent appearances in which he was hot: Immortals, The Tudors, Men's Health cover

Henry-cavill

Humpee: Karl Urban, Hump List alum
Recent appearance in which he was not hot, but reminded me of times when he was: Star Trek
[This is the only age-appropriate entry on the list. He almost didn't make it.]

Karl_urban-main-415x520

Humpee: Chace Crawford, Hump List newbie
Recent appearances in which he was hot: Gossip Girl, my dreams

Chace Crawford



Hump List: All-Stars Edition

Watching the season finale of Saturday Night Live, hosted by Justin Timberlake with musical guest Lady Gaga, I was reminded how much I would like hump JT. You may recall that JT has made an appearance in a Hump List of yore. (This one, but not this one or that one.) That got me thinking about all of the Hump List veterans. Adam Levine has also been on my mind (in my dreams) lately due to his weekly appearance in my living room via The Voice. The Hump List was due for an update anyway, so why not have an All-Stars Edition?

Justin Timberlake

Tall, cute, and funny. That's good enough for me.

Justin_timberlake

Adam Levine

Swarthy, sexy, competitive.

Adam_levine

Henry Cavill

The new Superman is one sexy motherfucker.

Henry_cavill

Matthew Morrison

A bit short but, oh, so pretty.

Matthew_morrison

BONUS HUMPEE!

Although this one has never been included in a past list, the time has come to reveal my lady crush on Sofia Vergara. Am I right?

Daily-damm_sofia-vergara


The Freebie List a.k.a. My Humps a.k.a. Celebrity F*ck List

I call it the Freebie List because I don't curse much and the Fuck List sounds vulgar. Regardless of what it is called, this is a list of well-known people that I may have sex with, should the situation arise, and my husband will say, "Well done, you," instead of, "I divorce you." This list has evolved over time. (See Three Boys I'd Like to Do It With and Three Men Who Want Me.) It's time for an update to reflect my cougar phase. (I am 35. Can that really be cougar age?) Also, it looks like I have decided I get to sleep with five men instead of three.

Continue reading "The Freebie List a.k.a. My Humps a.k.a. Celebrity F*ck List" »


Three Men Who Want Me

I used to write for a friend's web mag, Clark Schpiell Productions. This piece was published there September 20, 2004 (my 30th birthday, coincidentally).

Threemen One year ago, I wrote "Three Boys I'd Like to Do It With." The celebrities I would have been able to have sex with over the past year with permission from my husband were Justin Timberlake, Orlando Bloom and Benjamin McKenzie. But I'm 30 for Christ's sake and those boys don't do it for me anymore.

Brad Pitt, though out of the running for a full year, has managed to increase his virility and sex appeal through pills, a pact with the devil or good, old-fashioned plastic surgery.  Brad successfully fought Orlando Bloom for my affections and won, reclaiming his place among the select group of men who can ravage me anytime they want. Farewell, Keebler Elf.

Continue reading "Three Men Who Want Me" »


Three Boys I'd Like to Do It With

I used to write for a friend's web mag, Clark Schpiell Productions. This piece was published there September 15, 2003.

Threeboys Every married person I know has a list of famous people they get to have sex with if they ever meet. My husband's potentials include Marissa Tomei, Denise Richards and, rotating in and out of third place, Heather Graham and some redhead named Dina something who was in Starship Troopers. I think she played a slut.

For the longest time, my list consisted of Brad Pitt, Gabriel Byrne and Elijah Wood, who I would, of course, wait to defile until he turned 18 and decided to like girls instead of boys. After the first X-Men movie came out, Hugh Jackman replaced the aging Gabriel -- sorry, old man. After the Lord of the Rings came out and I saw a teeny tiny Elijah with huge, hairy feet, he was out. I replaced Elijah with Tom Welling when I started watching Smallville. I figured I needed to keep a youngster in the ranks.

Something started happening in my life that I'd failed to notice. I and all of my friends were hurtling toward thirty at an alarming pace. By the time that the Lord of the Rings came out on DVD, several of my friends had actually turned thirty and were wondering why they weren't married. We didn't think they let you cross that border without a husband.

Continue reading "Three Boys I'd Like to Do It With" »


Call for Opinions: What is your minimum definition of cheating?

I received a comment on a five-year-old post about cheating at The Peevery. What is your minimum definition of cheating? Where is the line between cheating and inappropriate behavior?

This is what I think, but I want to know what you think.

I am now forced to broaden my definition of cheating... If you are in an exclusive relationship and you have a conversation or an encounter with someone else, if you cannot recount that conversation word for word to your partner or you cannot describe that encounter to your partner in detail without discomfort, then you have behaved inappropriately. It's like foreplay to cheating and it is going to earn you a punch in the mouth if your partner is me.

Read the whole post: Exploratory Poonani


Call for Opinions: What do grown-ups do for fun?

Jamie asks:

My husband and I have discovered that we are the most boring people on earth. With every day being a 12-hour workday we don’t have a lot of free time, but what little we have, we have no idea what to do with. When we were younger we loved to go out and party, but we’ve outgrown it. And we never replaced these activities with anything else. Also, all of our friends have either had kids or never grew up, so we don’t really associate with anyone anymore.

So, basically we have no friends (we both work at the same place and everyone here is either way older than us, or has kids, or is weird or all of the above) and no hobbies. All we do is sit and stare at each other going “What do you wanna do? I don’t know, what do YOU wanna do?”

Is there some sort of match-making site for couples in their late 20’s-early 30’s to meet other lame people with no friends? If not, there should be. It’s hard to make friends as an adult.

Anyone have any suggestions for hobbies? We are not athletic and are both very accident prone, so anything with sharp pointy things (like darts) or heavy things (like bowling) or physical activity (like, um, sports) is not good. Also, anything that takes a long time (we have no attention span), or involves weirdos (like Renaissance fairs or Civil War Re-enactment) is out.

This is a good topic, about which I have surprisingly few opinions. My husband and I watch TV, go to the movies, and hand out with family (I have lots) and friends (we have few). We don't have tons of free time, though. We both have long commutes. We have two small children. I am taking MBA classes. I have to blog, and tweet, and post reviews on Yelp or the world will end. My husband plays online games. We're both fat because we don't exercise.

Anybody have some ideas for Jamie?


Can people change?

One of my relatives recently left her husband (again) and my sister and I were discussing the situation. I feel like our relative should divorce him already and cut her losses. My sister feels like our relative hasn't yet tried everything and should give him another chance to change his behavior. I said to my sister that I don't believe people change.

I don't believe that people can fundamentally change who they are. My sister agrees with that, but she does think that people can change their behavior. In the case of our relative, and in most marriages, if one spouse has left before and been fed up before, the douchey spouse saying he is really going to change this time seems like it is just a ploy because he knows she'll stay if he pretends. If he was really willing to change - if it was part of his fundamental nature to do so - he would have already done so.

This is what my sister says about it:

I believe whole-heartedly in the capacity for regeneration of the human heart. The difference is that while our personalities are fixed from conception, our behaviors are learned and can therefore be unlearned or retrained.  I do concede that apart from love, grace and forgiveness, it is an exercise in futility. One has to want to change and be willing to do the work to go after it.

In the case presented, if the parties involved are willing to admit their own part in the situation, forgive one hundred percent of the other person's part and move forward with love and grace.  There is no damage (and I mean none) that cannot be repaired and restored to an even greater level than before.

What do you think? Can people change?