25 Feb 2011

Julia Forever.

Written by sally @ 9:05 am — Section: sally

I’ve been watching old episodes of Julia Child lately, and there are two striking differences between her show and every single cooking show on television today:
1. Julia is imperfect. She drops stuff, her pans are old, her presentation sucks, she burns the food. You can totally do this, she is saying.
2. Julia is not trying to win you over via her boobs.

The more I watch, the more I am enraged about Giada. Giada: put your boobs away. You are ridiculous. There’s the boobs, then there’s the beautiful, spotless kitchen, the ten million dollar range, the fact that nothing spills, everything is perfect, perfect. (I am not going to address the foodgasm at the end.) Whereas on an episode of “The French Chef” where Julia makes a chicken dish favored by Napoleon, she brandishes a sword and hacks away at a raw chicken with it! And then clumsily tosses the sword away, all the while with her boobs safely covered. She made a chocolate cake the other day and said about the batter left in the bowl: “I’m going to eat that later, all by myself.” Yes. YES, JULIA. I am with you. Do not dip your finger in the bowl and lick it while giggling at the camera. Leave that to SOME OTHER PEOPLE.

21 Feb 2011

Oh. OH.

Written by sally @ 8:45 pm — Section: sally

This must be what it feels like to see your face on a milk carton.

“The impulse to write things down is a peculiarly compulsive one, inexplicable to those who do not share it, useful only accidentally, only secondarily, in the way that any compulsion tries to justify itself.”

— Joan Didion, “On Keeping a Notebook”

16 Feb 2011

Boo Hoo.

Written by sally @ 3:44 pm — Section: sally

I had this friend growing up — we were either super best friend blood sisters for life or else she hated my guts. This went on for years, starting in fourth grade. BFFS 4 EVA! and then SALLY NORDAN EATS WORMS. Back and forth, back and forth. Generally a mutual friend would intervene and we would become friends again, but the last time Callie hated my guts was the end of our senior year in high school, and then I never saw her again boo hoo.

I say it like that because I’ve been trying to write this synopsis of our friendship for a while now, and it always comes out like I am actually still in high school and fond of writing Cure lyrics on the front of my notebook. But look: I loved my friend, and then she hated me (over and over! for years!) and the sting of that does not go away.


Sometimes I forget what a valuable resource the Amazon Wishlist can be. Put in someone’s name, see the things they want, make judgments based upon this, etc. A person I like very much has ONLY shoes and drippy romance novels on her list. Really! Intriguing! A person I do not like very much has Duran Duran albums and books like The Identity Code: The 8 Essential Questions for Finding Your Purpose and Place in the World and The Essential Dog Body Language Handbook on her list. This is important information.

So it occurred to me the other day to look for Callie, and knowing her birthday and middle name came in handy because she has a very common first/last name combo and OH YEAH I FOUND HER. And people: I read her list, and we are reading the same books. We are, in a way, still connected.

Perhaps it shouldn’t be surprising to STILL like the same books as someone you USED to like the same books as, but when there is a twenty-year divide, it is exciting and comforting at the same time. Evelyn Waugh AND Brad Watson’s The Heaven of Mercury? That’s a crazy combo. A book about Kenny Shopsin? Nigella? 84, Charing Cross Road?!?!?

It is like Callie is sitting in her Camaro outside my house and we are about to go eat some fried cheese and laugh too hard and wet our pants. (Um, did everyone go through a pants-wetting stage in high school? No? Just me and all the girls I knew? Ok.) Maybe after she picks me up we’ll go put $2’s worth of gas in her car and listen to “Boys Don’t Cry” and rewind the part where he goes, “I would tell you that I LUFFED you if I thought that you would stay,” because he kind of barks it like it is difficult for him to say the words; we know that is the best part.

11 Feb 2011


Written by sally @ 12:31 pm — Section: sally

Things That Are Gross
An old man with dyed red hair doddering through the parking lot, clutching his purchase from the liquor store to his chest.

Things That Are Gross That I Like
That Kid Rock song with the “Werewolves of London” sample

Things That Are Gross
Listening to the guy in the booth behind me at the Thai House with the worst accent/voice combo — a super, super hick drawl and a gravelly voice — talk the entire time I was eating. When he answered his phone and said, “Are you going to get your massage?” it was more “Ore ya gwiiiiiiine ta git yar massaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarj?” Bonus: I think I used to know him in Starkville. He was well-known for the incredibly offensive way he smelled.

Things That Are Gross That I Like
Putting all of my selected Thai House buffet items on top of each other and just eating down the pile indiscriminantly.

8 Feb 2011

Mercenary Machinations, Incorporated. How May I Direct Your Call?

Written by sally @ 4:52 pm — Section: sally

Here’s something that made me feel old: at Kroger the other day there were two preteen girls who were dressed in identical outfits. I cannot remember why preteen girls do this. I know I did it; I’m sure of it. But I can’t remember why! “Are you gonna wear your Spuds McKenzie shirt tomorrow?” “Ok, so am I.” WHY.

About a week ago I noticed a really disgusting taste in my mouth. It tasted like I’d been chewing on an aspirin. Here are the potential causes I came up with:
1. I realllllly need to floss.
2. Is it heartburn?
3. Do I have a tumor?
4. Maybe Larry is poisoning me.
5. Weird side effect of FML?

After I googled it, Larry and I had this conversation.

Sally: So I finally figured out that the gross taste in my mouth is from my eye drops!
Larry: That’s kind of weird.
Sally: Yeah. Apparently you’re not poisoning me after all.
Larry: You thought I was poisoning you?
Sally: It crossed my mind!
Larry: I would never use poison.

Long years ago, when I extracted myself from my first marriage, I had a pile of things that made me want to vomit: some emails, a handwritten letter, and a multi-page List of Grievances. I knew that one day, I would find these funny, but if I kept them in my house I would end up finding a friendly yak to eat them. So I gave them to my friend Ann to keep, and yesterday, while looking for her husband’s birth certificate, she found them! Oh, and then she scanned them and sent them to me.

Here are some of the phrases from an email from October 2002. See if you can pinpoint why I would want to feed this document to a yak:

–“the relative wisdom of it all is not something I can presume to comprehend so abortively as you seem to do” (uh)
–repeatedly refers to our relationship/marriage as “our enterprise”
–“here we rest upon a plateau of what we ought to be” (do what now)
–“how very hoodwinked and hurt am I”
–“cowardly abandonment” (I think that is the definition of abandonment, btw)
–“mercenary machinations” (I have no idea what this means)
–“mine is anguish unsurpassed by your own of months gone by” (wait, are you saying that your anguish is or isn’t as bad as mine? because I seriously can’t tell)
–And then he quotes some Chaucer. In Middle English.

It pains me — mine anguish is unsurpassed, some might say — that I inspired these phrases. Mine unsurpassed anguish was allayed somewhat when I saw that I included “ate chicken leg that I claimed the day before” on the multi-page List of Grievances,

3 Feb 2011

The Snow Flurry of Death is Coming.

Written by sally @ 2:00 pm — Section: sally

A few weeks ago, the essay on the back page of the NYT Book Review was about the first mystery novel, published in serial form in 1865. People of the world: I have acquired a copy of The Notting Hill Mystery and it is fantastic! Despite the language barrier (“Having once swallowed the original imposition, any additional absurdity was of course easily disposed of, and it was now determined to avoid all occasion for offence”), this was a really interesting murder mystery. Not to give anything away, but there is poisoning, a duel, some premature twins, one of them is stolen by gypsies (!), and then there is bunch of stuff about hypnotism. I am not generally a fan of murder mysteries, but I may have to start exclusively reading ones from the 1860s.

Speaking of things I may have to start doing, about a year ago I got a Twitter account, only I didn’t know what to do with it and so I abandoned it, and then I got another, but under my actual name, which was a dumb idea because my brother follows me and now I can’t say anything nasty (because you know how I’m all FUCKITY SHIT Y’ALL FUUUUUCK all the time), and then I decided “wale, maybe I could tell the internet about Twitter and see how that goes and maybe I won’t die from not being anonymous” and so if you would like, you can follow me on Twitter by clicking here. My actual first name is revealed! Please be gentle.

Well, gotta go. Apparently we are about to get a snow flurry and so everyone is crying. Sample comment on a list of closures posted by a tv station:

what is wrong with Hinds County School district??????? Are they waiting for the worst before they make a decision?? LOOK AT THE RADAR!!!!!!!!!!

I promise I did not alter this comment in any way.