Friday, October 29, 2010

Website Revamp

Because I've been stuck at home for the past day and a half (hack/cough/sigh), I decided to update my website.  This might very well be the 200th time I've done so since learning to do so, but this one is my favorite of all.  The backgrounds represent my two homes: Colorado and New York, and the nameplate is the one I wear every day given to me by my boo.

Enjoy and let me know if you find any typos, broken links, etc.

Love,

Glennis

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Ask G: Pu-push It Real Good aka The Perfect Birthing Mix

Today on "Ask G" 'Bill's Mom' writes:

"Hi there-
I am going to be having a baby in the next couple weeks or so and I was told that I should look into music to listen to during the labor process...do you have any advice on good music mixes for bringing a baby into the world? I hear you used to be a dj.
-"Bill's" soon to be mom"

Dear Mommy Bill,

Congratulations!!
I'm a baby.

I can't speak from experience here, but I understand having a baby is a pret-ty big deal.  In fact I hear it can be life changing, but don't quote me on that.  An expert on babies I'm not... an expert on music I totally am not either.  But I do love me some hot jams and I am more than up to the task of helping you put together your baby mix!  In fact, I'm honored!

I thought hard about this and I've decided that, because everyone's musical tastes differ, I'd give you some guidelines to follow when picking your mix instead of choosing songs for you.  Though I'm sure along the way I'll throw in one or two suggestions which you by no means have to use.

In my opinion you should consider the following when choosing your "burthing jamz":

1.  Your Annoyance Level
Preeeeetty sure the level of  annoyance rises when pushing a medicine ball-sized person out your hoo-ha (childbirth is beautiful is it not?), so you want to avoid songs with catchy, but repetitive hooks which might drive you to insanity.  Eiffel 65's Blue (Da Bu De) comes to mind as a song that, when played at a club might cause shawty fire burning on a dance floor, but when played in a... baby birthing room (huh) might cause murder.  You might argue that murdering someone while giving birth is the true circle of life, but I'd like to point out that your arguments are stupid.

Moving on.

2. Capturing the Moment
One day your little Bill is going to look at you in his Yankee uniform just before he takes the mound for the very first time and he'll say, "Mom.  Dad.  There's something I've always wanted to ask you.  What was the first song I ever heard?  I mean... what played as I exited your lady garage?"  Do you really want to turn to him and say, "Pop That Pussy by 2 Live Crew"?  Can you even imagine the effect that would have on poor Bill?  I mean, sure, the song is relevent to the birthing process and you and your husband will have at that point raised a fine young man, but his mighty world might be crushed by that news causing him to blow the game ruining the Yankee's chances of ever becoming the winningest team in baseball.  Nice going, mom.  You really screwed the pooch on that one.

3. I Get So Emotional
Childbirth is beautiful blahblahblah, but let's face facts... you've got a job to do.  Getting the boy out is job number one and you don't want some sappy song about a unicorn drinking out of a kitten's paw mucking that up for you.  I do a lot of crying on the toilet and let me tell you crying and pushing do not go together like ramalama kadingidy dingy dong.

4. Sessytime
Sex is what got you into this so you might be inclined to listen to a sexy song to mark the occasion.  While almost every part of me thinks this is a good idea, there is this nagging voice in the back of my head telling me it crosses the line.  Prince has no place in a birthing mix.  I concede.

5. Classic
I know a lot of people are of the mindset that classical music cures all, but I'm of the mindset that it's a giant snoozefest.  I mean, sure, there is a time and a place, but do you really want your baby coming out all snootypants thinking he's better than other people because he was born to Sonata No. 12 In E Minor The Wind in my Shorts?  I don't think so.

Wait.  Hold the phone.  Something just occurred to me.  My advice, and I truly think this might be the best advice I've ever doled, is to listen to...

wait for it...

waaaaait for it...

...


wait...




for it...







SHOW TUNES!

Mind = blown
Yes, my dear mommy to be, I believe you should listen to your favorite musicals, soundtracks and, hell let's throw comedy albums in there as well.  (I mean can you even imagine how rich this revelation is going to make me?  Brilliant.)  What's better than a sing-a-long to keep your mind off the pain?  That's what makes going to the dentist so awful - no sing-a-longs! (Sorry to my DDS friend Brittany reading this - I'm sure you've figured out a way to work around that problem.)

I'm not having a baby yet (but as I just tweeted I have some nasty indigestion, so... fingers crossed!), but here's what I'd do if I was about to push a papoose out my teepee:

On your way to the hospital: Ideally your husband would drive you, but if you live in NY you'll probably take a cab.  Assuming the baby's not on its way, I'd like you to a capella "Morning Glow".  Your husband need not join in, but really how can he resist?  The song perfectly captures the uplifting spirit of the situation and will really set you in the mood for baby time.  (Why a capella?  Because NYC, home of the Great White Way, still doesn't have an all-musical radio station.  And they call this America.)

Chillin' in your room:  A mix of songs that are just plain fun to sing along with.  Suddenly Seymour, Cabaret, Hard Knock Life, Part of Your World.  Get the staff involved and soon you'll be the most popular patient on the floor!  No, really.  Trust me on this.  Musical theatre makes you very popular.


Uncomfortable, but not in pain:  When the contractions kick in, but it's not time to push, switch it up to The Rocky Horror Picture Show.  Just be careful when doing the Time Warp.

When the contractions intensify: Listen to your favorite comedy album.  Steven Martin?  Maria Bamford?  George Carlin?  What's your poison?  Or, wait - check with your doctor to make sure it's OK to laugh at this stage.  You don't want to end up hurting the baby in the name of a good time.  Plenty of opportunities to do that once he's born.  (Might I also recommend my boo's comedy album?  Why, I might.  I might just do that.)

In your final contractions: Your husband serenades you with "Maria" from West Side Story, but subs in your name.  ex: "Aaaaaamanda.  I just met a girl named Amanda!  And suddenly I see..." the baby!  Holy shit it's coming!

As Bill meets the world: You and your husband perform an exhausted, but impassioned version of "Without Love" from Hairspray.

Happiest. Baby. Ever.
Word.


Well, Bill's Mom To Be, I hope this helped.  No need to thank me, really.  Just name your first girl Glennis and we'll call it even.

xG


Would you like to "Ask G"?  Of course you would!  Send an email to answermecommag@gmail.com.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

G's Broadway Adventure

*SPOILER ALERT!* - This post may contain spoilers for Pee-wee on Broadway!  If you want to be surprised by the show then I suggest you avoid reading this post (though I do try to keep them spoilers to a min). xG

I love Pee-Wee Herman.  LOVE.
If you love me so much then why don't you marry me?
I WILL MARRY YOU.  I will call off my engagement to Matt and marry not only Pee-wee, but the entire show!  Then I'll let the show carry me over the threshold to our new house (the Playhouse of course) and make sweet love to me!  I will have little show babies with the show and, when we die, we'll be set aflame in a boat at sea.  THAT'S how much I love it!

...was the exact sentiment of the man seated at the end of our row at The Pee-Wee Herman Show on Broadway last night who also felt the need to speak-a-long with the entire production.

Where's the most annoying audience member, Globey?  Right... there!
Now lissen, I really do love me some Pee-wee.  See: farewell email to law firm where I was employeed for 8 (loooooong) years:

-----Original Message-----
From: Mcmurray, Glennis F.
Sent: Thursday, April 17, 2008 3:27 PM
To: NYC ALL
Subject: But What Am I?
Today is my last day in the firm.
Just like Pee-Wee Herman in his Big Adventure...
I'm off to find my bike.
PEACE
-Glennis

But, you guys, I wouldn't marry him.  I mean, he's kind of a man-child and I know from experience that's just a recipe for disaster.  (But speaking of recipes... we do have similar diets which is the most important foundation for any happy marriage!  Fried butter, anyone?)  So, yes, I love Pee-wee (LURV, in fact), but doesn't everyone?  And can't pretty much everyone quote him?  So it's not that impressive that you know Jambi's going to utter, "Meka leka high meka hiney ho" a few times or that Conky will give us the word of the day up top.  (The word was "fun"!  AAHHHH!)  And when you tout your impressive (yawn) knowledge of the show throughout said show (that I paid a lot of money to see) you're kind of asking me hate you for having a good time and that makes me feel like a beast so just shut up already!

Ahem.

Let me back this train up.

Paul Reubens is my hero.  I know I deem a lot of people my hero which means I've got a lot of heroes.  Nothing wrong with that, Chach.  I admire Paul's career and especially his chameleon-like transformations.  Need I remind you of his stint as Prince Gerhart on 30 Rock?



Best death scene ever?



Excuse me... what?  Paul Reubens on The Gong Show?



OK so that last one was just for fun, but he really is the greatest.  And ecu me?  This?  Yes please!

So what I'm trying to say is I saw this show soley based on my love of Pee-wee not really knowing what the show would be.  It ended up being everything I'd hoped for and more.  It was just like watching an episode of Playhouse (of the CBS variety) from the 80's only live and flashier and LIVE!  Seeing Paul as Pee-wee in person, in front of my face, on stage was to say the least thrilling.  The audience rose to their feet when he walked on stage and I had a moment of "this is actually happening" which I didn't expect.  I wasn't brought to tears (ahem man at the end of my row), but I was definitely moved.  I just... I just love him so much, you guys.  Paul Reubens, that is.  Where as some performers shy away from a role or character that made them (*cough*JonHeder*cough*), Paul Reubens basked in it, went with it and has taken it to the ends of the earth and back.  There's not a bit of me that doesn't admire and aspire to that.  Not only should you be proud of creating something people respond to and want to see more of, you should respect the fact that not many people will ever do something like that.  I understand wanting to diversify yourself, but why stop the train from rollin??  Are you too good for your character?!  (But seriously, no Napoleon Dynamite 2? What the fudge?)

OK, stepping off my judgebox now.

Lynne Marie Stewart, who now plays Charlie's mom on "Sunny", reprised her role as Miss Yvonne and was just delightful.  I honestly wish the show had just been Paul and Lynne on stage, maybe improvising, maybe just staring back at me.  Lurv.  Lynne had two snafoos (her petticoat slipped off and Chairry's wig got stuck on... Chairry) which she handled with all the poise and grace you'd expect a Groundlings alum would possess.  Also reprising his role as Jambi (Mecka Lecka... YES WE GET IT DUDE.  YOU KNOW THE SHOW.) was John Paragon.  Yay John!  He was always my favorite.  OK I may have had a crush.  My therapist would have a field day with that - "a disembodied head who grants wishes and asks nothing in return?  Iiiiinteresting..."  I choose to focus on the fact that he's trapped in a box allowing me to know his wherabouts at all times.  You're telling me you'd turn that down, ladies?



Aaaaanybroadwaybaby... I mean, really the entire cast was great, Chairry (voiced by the adorable Lexi Fridell), Phil LaMarr made the perfect Cowboy Curtis (and his bio alerted me to the fact that there was a Patty Hearst musical called "Patty Patty Bang Bang: The Patty Hearst Musical" - hello!) and for only having one line as himself, Drew Powell was great as the dancing bear (he also voiced Mr. Window and the Flowers).  The swoonie Josh Meyers killed me as the sessy Firefighter and I'm pretty sure I'm going to turn my laptop into Screeny after seeing "her" live, but where, I ask you, was Reba the Mail Lady!?  Maybe she needed a break after appearing in more episodes of a show than anyone, ever.  Boom!

Three things: according to Wikipedia Cyndi Lauper recorded the theme song for Pee-wee's show under the name "Ellen Shaw".



Second, they showed a Penny cartoon last night and by they I mean The King of Cartoons (played by Lance Roberts - fun fact: he played the Genie in 7,000 performances of Aladin at the Hypereon Theatre - I don't think I've ever done 7,000 of anything.  What am I doing with my life!?!  Ahem.) which made me realize I'd totally forgotten about Penny!



I can't find a lot about Anna Seidman, the voice of Penny, but apparently she is on Facebook and we have no mutual friends.

Third, Natasha Lyonne was a member of the Playhouse Gang in season one.  I couldn't find a clip of that, but I found a clip.. of her... watching herself on the show?  Weird.


I love the girl so, though it's weird, I highly approve.

Last I'll just say that my number one, big top moment of the show was Pee-wee's balloon work.  You have to see it to understand.  HOWLING.

Now, back to the BIGGESTPEEWEEFANSEVEROMGOMG.  As I said, they talked through the whole thing, but it wasn't just the talking.  I knew they were enjoying themselves which was why I kept my trap shut (something I often have trouble doing), but the fact that they looked around after each comment to see, I can only assume, who was impressed with their Pee-wee knowledge was really too much.  Did you really pay all that money to see a show so people could know how much you love the show you paid a bunch of money to see?  Doesn't that kind of go with the teritory of paying a lot of money to see a show opening night?  Wait, at one point Pee-wee makes microwave popcorn and the guy goes "Popcorn!  Hahaha!  Popcorn!  Hahahahahahaaaa I told you'd there be popcorn!" at top volume.  Oh brudda.  So they were a pain, but not a total distraction, and as the show ended we all started filing out of the theatre when I heard, "You keep your goddamn hands off me!!"  Surprise, surprise it was mouthy Jones and his partner starting a fight with a 60-year-old man.  Come ON.  They continued to fight as they walked out of the theatre and try as I might to catch up with them I missed it all.  I did catch someone coming down the stairs say, "he had his hands around his throat!"  REALLY??  I guess I just assume a Broadway production brings out the best in people and then I look around to find jeans, fanny packs and wife beaters and reality sets in.  I once exited a show to hear a woman scream, "Oh no you did NOT just stick your hand in my purse!  She's tryin' to steal my shit!"  Now DAS classy.

So, in closing I say: go see Pee-wee if you're a fan of the show, go see Pee-wee if you're not a fan, just go see Pee-wee.  It's one of those experiences you really should have before you die.  Wait, maybe the guy causing a ruckus in my row was from the Buried Life... they seem pretty douchie.  (Really, marrying a stranger in Vegas is something you have to do before you die?  Pu-leeeeez.)

Oh and if you do end up going - behave yourself!

Love,

Glennis

The Pee-wee Herman Show on Broadway plays through Jan 2.  More info here!

A Great Show! (I know you are, but what am I?)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Bathroom Humor

Why, yes! I do have a hilarious story about mistaken identities! I'm glad you asked.

The scene: Matt and I, at dinner, a restaurant in Williamsburg.

I excuse myself to go to the bathroom. It's empty (the bathroom, not my bladder) and I choose the stall to the left. As soon as I sit down another woman walks in and, because I have terrible hayfever allergies, I start sniffing. Sure the other occupant heard me sniff, I think, "wouldn't it be funny if she thought I was doing coke in here..." (snorting coke in a bathroom, the height of hilarity). With that in mind I sniff loudly and, from outside my stall I hear...

"Danieeeeelle???"

Discuss.

Love,

Glennis

Monday, October 25, 2010

Nailed It

It's been a while since I've had the old toes and fingies done.  I noticed last night, as I was dressing for the Barber/Woolfolk wedding-party-ball, the desperate shape my toes were in.  It's really a disgrace.  Some of you are of the school of thought that this should immediately be remedied by a trip to my local salon and I whole-heartedly agree, but only about it being remedied.  I have a real problem getting my nails done in a salon and there are a few reasons why.  First there's the obvious deterrent - the great Paula Abdul nail fiasco of 2004 wherein she had to have a nail surgically removed due to fungus caused by unsanitary manicure utensils.  Gross.  I mean, it's not the end of the world, but it's pretty disgusting.
Straight up now tell me... did you sanitize that file?
Second, I am a mover.  I have a hard time sitting still for long periods of time (I'm doing squats as I write this), plus I'm super impatient.  Allowing a hair dresser to blow dry my hair is a big deal.  (Also kind of a control freak?  Just a leetle?)  Because of my impatience most of my pedicures end with me shoving my hairy toes (seriously, hobbit feet) into my shoes before they're dry thus negating the pedicure and wasting my hard-earned money.  Stoopit.  I know I should revel in the "me" time, but it just feels like time that could be spent eating cheese. (Now a cheese mani/pedi I can get on board with!)

But the greatest deterent of all might surprise you.  For you see... I, Glennis McMurray, am a licensed nail technician.  Or, I was.  I don't make a habit of telling people any more as the responses started to gross me out.  Listen, there ain't nothin' wrong with doing nails, peeps, and I should have told that to a few of your faces.  Ain't no shame in working hard for your money right, Donna Summer!?  (Preeeeetty sure she wrote that song about nail techs, but don't quote me on that.)  But I forgive, I just won't ever give you a free manicure and trust me - they good.

Let me start by saying that it all came to be because my mother was a hair dresser.  She cut hair (and painted, she's kind of an amazing artist) and I at one point had similar aspirations.  Art, though I could copy the shit out of an already drawn image, was not my thing, but I always thought hairdressing would be a great way to earn money when I moved to NY.  I'd waited tables in Durango and despised it (hated the waiting, loved the free food) so I planned on avoiding that line of work at all costs.  Since the only reputable hair school was too far for me to commute to and still live in Durango I decided to take classes at a nail school in Farmington, NM or, as we grew up calling it, FarmPit.

Farmington might just be the arm pit of New Mexico.  There's not a lot going on there and the whole town is stuck in an 80's bubble.
The carpet matches the drapes.
There was also an air of defeat that wafted through the town.  I mean, I'm sure there are ambitious, driven people that come out of Farmington and I went to school with some of the sweetest people I've ever met, but the town itself is sort of depreso.  Though I will say they have a pretty sweet mall (hence all the mall bangs) and, since Durango's mall was more of a hall, we frequented the Farmington Mall for all our back-to-school and Red Lobster needs.  (Mmmm cheesy buns.)  So, apart from the mall I can't say I was thrilled to be attending nail school in Farmington.  Not thrilled in the least as I watched my friends go off to college.  In fact you could say I was depressed as balls.

Now, I know what you're saying, "Nail School??  Can't you just, like, DO THEM?"  And my response would be no, dummy.  You can't.  You'd be surprised what you have to know!  Anatomy, sanitation and fungus-prevention, how to safely work on people with diabetes (so they don't, you know, lose a TOE) and of course the ushe - manis, pedies, tips and the like.  It's not rocket science, but it's no day at the beach either.  I'll admit that as an 18-year-old with dreams of living in the Big Apple, I was a bit over the school before I'd even started.  I'll also admit I thought I was too good.  I did.  I wanted to be on Broadway, not filing toenails, but followed through because it was a means to an end.  But the longer I was in school the more I realized I really liked doing nails.  The perfectionist side of me came out and a great day was a perfect set of tips.  And then with the discovery of nail art my life kind of changed.  I was obsessed.  It became a challenge to see what I could paint on the smallest of nails.  My classmates would bring in pictures of cartoon characters, landscapes, even famous people (pretty exclusively Elvis) and I, using the tiniest of brushes, would set to work creating my masterpiece.  If only I'd had the foresight to take pictures!  This was when I started to let go, make friends and every day my disdain for my situation lessened.  I also began to enjoy the drive to and from school.  45-minutes in a car by myself allowed me the luxury of a musical sing-a-long which any theatre nerd will tell you is a damn fine time.  And, if we're being completely honest here, and we are, my soundtrack of choice was usually RENT.  I guess you could say it really lit my candle.  (Gross)

But I digress...

The cast of characters at the school was varied.  Two Navajo girls who, by my standards, lived a pretty posh lifestyle off their government issued checks.  I was slightly jealous (of the money, not the reasons they received it), but also felt like it made them a tad passive.  They didn't even plan on doing nails, but the gov't money paid for education so I guess they thought why not?  They had plans to open a tanning salon so if they ended up wanting to do nails the two could go hand in tanned.  (Hey oooo)  I'm pretty sure they're still in Farmington driving around in their awesome vanilla-scented pink truck.  That truck was so cool.  Way better than my rusted Toyota Corolla hatchback that smelled of patchouli oil.  The director of the nail school, a sweet, round, jubilant woman, was the one most excited by my nail art.  I must have painted an Elvis a week for her.  But the thing I remember most about her was her fake toenails.  I'm can't be 100% sure it was because of her diabetes, but that's what I remember.  Fake toenails!  Now, because I'm slightly obsessed with seeing deformed feet (my Summers are spent staring at the ground), I've seen fake toenails quite a few times.  At the time, though, I thought it was nuts.  Now listen, this wasn't a "classy" group per se and I count myself among the group.  One woman pretty exclusively talked about how she was sure we could smell her period.  (sorry)  But the one thing I will say is that they were the most genuine, sweet group of ladies I've met and because they were all quite a few years older than me I learned something from each of them.

Following through on my plan to do nails when I moved to NY, I interviewed at a few high end salons on the upper west side which went well - one of them offered me a job doing nails on the Leeza Gibbons show... so... that's a thing.  (Still kind of regret turning that one down.)  But as I pounded the pavement I was struck by the sheer number of nail salons this city housed.  I slowly realized my plan had a fault and I'd need to make money some other way.  Well, farts.  (I ended up taking secretarial work which made me way more money even if it did kill my soul a little bit.)  I will say had I not done nails I never would have met the NY family I eventually nannied for.  I did the grandmother's nails when I lived in Boulder (they were on vacation) before moving to NY, and they offered me a job.  Wait, it just ocurred to me how stupid that was on their part.  Yeesh.  AnywaycoTexas... that family ended up being a nightmare (more on them another time), but through them I met another family who ended up becoming my surrogate family and to whom I owe much of my sanity my first few years here.  I'm not sure I would have made it without them and it can all be traced back to nails.

And with that, dear readers, I'm going to pamper myself with a mani and pedi, though I'll probably still stuff my troll feet into my shoes before the paint has dried.

Love,

Glennis

PS - Check out my Radar shout out and don't forget to "Ask G"!

Photo: Anya Garrett

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Ask G: Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

Today on "Ask G", Lauren writes:

"i know you are the queen of voice overs and i'm looking to take a piece of the pie. aka make a little cisnash. i'm gonna put together a reel with joel spence (ucb guy here), i think. he charges like $300 bones. i wanted any advice on all of it as it's a realm i've not a whole lot of knowledge."

Dear Lauren,

I'm so glad you asked!  I get that question a lot and would love to share the knowledge I've gained in the VO biz over the past few years.  Voice overs are not only fun, they can be a very lucrative career.

I hate to say it, but I sort of fell into voice overs.  After taking Brooke & Mary's excellent On-Camera Commercial Intensive (www.brookeandmary.com) - which I highly recommend for any NYers looking to break into commercials - I was signed with an agency.  Because the agency signed across the board (for on-camera & voice over), they started sending me out on voice overs right away and much to my own dismay.  I say that because I had NO idea what I was doing.  On-camera I got.  Standing behind a mic using my voice and only my voice was a whole new beast that I was none to eager to take on.  About 6-months into the process (being sent out on approx. 4-5 VO auditions a week) I booked my first spot for Jeep radio.  I had one line as "happy neighbor" and it took me all of 5-minutes to record.  I walked out feeling uncertain, sure I'd screwed up the spot and certain my agents would be calling me at any moment to let me go.  Thankfully, though I asked my agents to stop sending me out on voice overs (imagine?), my agent Katherine told me I was good, said I had a "soothing" and "girl next door" voice and continued to send me out.  Since then I've booked National Network spots for Playtex, Dawn, Prego, E*Trade and now I make a living almost exclusively through voice overs.  Thank god I kept going!

The first piece of advice I'll impart to you is taking a little time before signing up for a class (which I recommend, but more on that later) so you can listen to commercials on TV and the radio and recording and listen to your own voice.  Instead of fast forwarding through commercials start listening to the voices.  Where does your voice fit in?  You might be surprised to find out where you fit which is why it's equally as important to record your voice and listen back.  Are you the reassuring mom?  The ditzy teen?  The sexpot?  It might sound obvious, but because you're being represented solely by your voice it's important to be as clear and specific as possible.  What we hear when we speak sounds very different when played back for our own ears, which we all discovered with our first answering machine, right?

After you've listened to a ton of voice overs and have an idea where you fit, find some copy (I know Lauren knows, but copy is just show biz lingo for the words on the page) either online or by transposing the commercials that speak to you (no pun intended).  Then record yourself on Garage Band or the like to see how you sound.  (You can also find scripts here: http://www.edgestudio.com/scripts.htm)

Some things to keep in mind:

1. Who are you talking to?
Your voice changes when speaking to a room full of people as opposed to a single person, your mom vs. your best friend, a child vs. a teenager.  Imagine the audience for the spot you're working on, pick someone in your life who fits in that audience and talk to them.

2. Smile!
Your enthusiasm can come across on camera in many ways, but in voice overs you have to actually, physically smile in order to get that across.  So if the spot calls for it, smile!

3. Impressions
Do you do voices or impressions of people?  That's important especially when working on a character or cartoon reel.  Some of my accents come from obscure impressions like my British accent from Jane Carr on Dear John.  Every single voice and accent you do could be usable so work on expanding the character so you can play different emotions and you could end up making a lot of money by booking a series or movie!

4. Improvise
If you're adept at the art of improv then use it, use it, use it.  Don't go off-script willy nilly, but if you can add a cute little button at the end or improvise a funny line you're probably going to book the spot.  Same goes for on-camera, but with voice over it has less to do with how you look so it can really be put to good use.

5. Practice, practice, practice
Like most things the more you do it the better you'll get.  Don't give up because it feels weird - it is weird.  It's not normal to stand in a booth by yourself and act like a sex-crazed grape or a disgruntled sandwich.  It's just not normal!  So be patient with yourself and try to have fun with it.  Pretty soon you'll be an old pro and the residual checks will start rolling in.

Of course, it's not necessary to do all this work before taking a class.  You could find out that you're a natural, but sometimes finding your voice takes a while so why not speed up the process?  And finally, classes.  If you're in NY, Sound Lounge's Carrie Faverty and Tony Mennuto offer a fabulous boot camp and, lucky you, their next class starts November 13th!  (Contact carrie@soundlounge.com for info.)  When putting together your reel, and professionals correct me if I'm wrong, I believe you should have at least one promo ("Coming up next on HDTV!"), one or two "characters" (which don't have to be cartoony, but just the people talking about the product) and a few announcer VOs.  It should be no longer than 2-minutes and make sure the sound quality is great.  Spending a little money on your reel and putting it up on http://voice123.com/ or http://www.voicebank.net/ is a great option.  You could be cast in a spot based on your reel without even auditioning.  It's rare, but it happens!

I hope this helps, Lauren, and if anyone reading this has information on voice over classes in other parts of the country please feel free to leave them in the comments.

You can check out some of my voice over work and my reel on my website.

xG

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Dirty Little Lies

I'm about to admit something to you guys that I'm not proud of.  I used to be a liar.  A big, fat liar with my stupid pants on fire.  It's not something I brag about or anything and I'm not proud of it so get off my lady junk.  Gaaahd!  Why are you so judgmental, internet!?  Anywayyouwantit... I did it and that's that.  Lying is just one of those things that starts out small with a few "tell them I'm not home" fibs and snowballs until you're sneaking out of your bedroom window in your father's house at midnight to smoke pot in "the hood" (of Durango, CO so really more like "the condo") with your best friend.  Lying begets more lying and the knot in the pit of your stomach eventually becomes so intense that you, hopefully, decide to stop lying when the time comes to grow up and make important life decisions. (i.e. Adulthood)

I mentioned the other day that I attended the Bridal Expo in Times Square.  The more time that passes the more I regret that decision. I mean they should have just called the place "The Liar Expo" because it was nothing but big, heaping, steamy piles of bullshit.  And the worst part is I totally fell for it which really ticks me off!  I mean I don't fall for anything anymore.  I've had my share of run-ins with the NY scammers; the "can I ask where you get your hair done?" ladies and the "do you like free comedy?" dudes.  I've learned my lessons the hard way, but I guess that's what happens when you have little guidance and move to NY at 19.  I don't judge myself because I learned my lesson.  Cut to present day and I'm getting duped all over again!  What a wedding won't do to a sane girl's head.

The day after the event I got a call from a representative from Laser Cosmetica telling me I'd won $500 in free services.  My initial reaction?  Yeaaaah right.  But they piqued my interest so I checked out their website and the Photo Facial was too much for me to resist.  Who doesn't want to look like a photograph all the time??  Who, I ask!?  No one that's who.  But wait, let me back this train up.  The first call I received went like this:
















SALES LADY: Hiyeeee!  Can I speak with Gleeennis Mc... Murree?

ME: (sigh) This is she.

















SALES LADY: HIYEE!  I'm calling from Laser Cosmetica!  We met at the Bridal Expo...

ME: Let me just stop you there, I'm really not interested, but thank you.

*click*

I hate to be rude (no I don't), but why waste anyone's time.  But then I thought about it and, as I said, checked out their website and that little seed of doubt sprouted roots and started growing.  What if I had won?  What if I really could look like a photograph all the time?  WHO, I ASK YOU, DOESN'T WANT THAT!?  And I was just the teeniest bit regretful that I'd been so rude.

Cut to: the following day when I receive another call which I was a little more pleased to receive.

ME: Hello?













SALES LADY 2: Good morning, good morning, good morning!  Can I please speak with Gl...eeeenis?  Mc... Murray?

ME: This is she.














SALES LADY 2: Hello!  I'm calling from Laser Cosmetica!  We met at the Bridal Expo on Tuesday and I have some very exciting news for you!  You've won $500 in free services!  Congratulaaaations!

ME: Thanks!














SALES LADY 2: So what I'd like to do is set up a time for you to come in for a FREE consultation!  What does your schedule look like for the next year?

ME: Listen, I'm in the middle of something can you email me the information?














SALES LADY 2: OH sure!  I'll get that right out to you.

ME: Thanks!  Bye.

*click*

And in all honesty I was in the middle of something: a delicious bowl of cereal.  Still half thinking it was a scam I emailed my ladies to get their thoughts and they all seemed to be of the "go for it!" train of thought so I figured - what's the harm?  But when I posted my good news on Facebook I heard from a few people that they were charged by Laser Cosmetica for services they never received.  Ooooh you dirty little liars!  I received an email from LC, but ignored it and thanked the gods I hadn't gone for the consultation.  Nothing worse than pushy sales ladies working on commission. Nothing.

Cut to: Friday day when I check my phone and find a voice mail from, who else, Laser Cosmetica saying, "Hello Glennis!  I see you've recently booked a consultation with us on October 30th at 3pm..." I didn't hear the rest of the message because, in the middle of Costco, I shouted "liars!"  OK I wasn't in Costco, but that sounds much more dramatic doesn't it?  (I mean I went to Costco earlier that day which is another blog post in itself - oh my lawd - but at the time when I received the call I was in the car and that's just not the same.)  Anywaybebaby... I immediately called the "spa" back and got their voice mail.  "You've reached Laser Cosmetica.  We are either on the other line or with a client."  Please.  I probably called some chick's apartment while she was dropping a steamer.  So I left the following message, "Hello, this is Glennis McMurray.  I received a call from one of your sales associates saying I'd booked a consultation with your office on October 30th at 3pm.  I did not book a consultation, nor will I be booking one whether it's free or you're paying me.  Do not call me again.  Thank you."  And then I did a little high five dance because that, my friends, is how ya do.

But the saga continues!  An hour later, after purchasing some sweet Halloween decorations at the dollar store in Billyburg, I got a call from the "head office" (her bathroom) of Laser Cosmetica.















"HEAD OFFICE" DOUCHE: Hello can I talk to GLENNIS, please?

ME: This is she.
















 "HEAD OFFICE" FARTSUCKER: You called to cancel your consultation with...

ME: No.. I never BOOKED a consultation.

 














"HEAD OFFICE" POOSNIFFER: (In a very condescending voice.) You didn't call and speak with Shaneesha to book a consultation for October 30th at 3pm?

ME: No.  I did not.

 














"HEAD OFFICE" BUTTGRABBER: Oh really?

ME: (wtf!) Yes.  REALLY!

 














"HEAD OFFICE" SNOTLICKER: Okaaay then!  Have a good day!

ME: (Matching her snottiness.) You too!!

*click*

WOW.  I mean... wow.  Flames of furry shooting out my face holes!!

Lying as a kid is one thing.  Lying as an adult trying to do business, another.  How about this, Laser Cosmetica... how about you don't trick people into booking your services and dupe them out of thousands of dollars (talk to Ms. Marcy Jarreau on that one) in order to stay afloat.  I, for one, will never do business with you and I'm pretty sure anyone with half a brain who googles you after one of your "congratulations!" calls will steer clear as well.

Oh, and... CONGRATULATIONS Laser Cosmetica!  You're all dirty liars!

Love,

Glennis

Friday, October 22, 2010

Dad

Me and Pops
I've written and re-written this post about my dad about 20 times so far this morning and I just can't seem to get it right.  What can I say about a man who I've had a wonderful, loving, tumultuous, often heartbreaking relationship?  There are, of course, always deep layers to any child/parent relationship, but sometimes something happens that takes things to another level.  Sometimes something hits you from out of the blue and changes everything.

About four years ago I started getting reports from my mom and my dad's nephew that my dad seemed a little "off".  He was still living in my hometown of Durango, CO, and I was in NY so I rarely saw him and, let's me honest, my mom can be a little overdramatic at times.  When I talked to my dad on the phone he confirmed that he felt weird, but that he thought it might have been because of the varnish he used on the wood floors in his house.  My dad, among other things, was a great handiman.  I agreed that it was probably the varnish because I knew telling him to go to the doctor would do nothing.  When I was a child he, with bare feet, stepped on a nail while climbing off a ladder.  The nail when straight through his foot and it took hours of pleading with him to get him to go to the doctor.  I'm pretty sure he went only after he'd pulled the nail out himself.  Now we see where I get my stubborness from, yes?  Eventually my dad was unable to do math and button up his shirt and so my mom - still friends with him though they'd divorced when I was 8 - took him to a hospital in Albuquerque where they could see a specialist.  I knew seeing a doctor was hard for him, but it was necessary - they confirmed that he had the signs of early-onset Alzheimer's.


About a year after the diagnosis my dad came to see me in NY and his decline was obvious.  Trying in some way to comfort him, I bought him a CD player so when things got to be too much he could turn it on and listen to Willie, Paul or Ray and relax.  I showed him how to use the CD player and he just couldn't understand it.  That's when the reality hit me that he was bad and getting worse.

My dad now lives in a nursing home on Long Island and he's living a very happy life.  The nurses love him and my sister, Kelsey, is about 20-minutes away and can visit often.  He gets postcards and letters from his friends and family and I visit whenever I can.  It sucks that this is where he is and that a brilliant artist and wonderful man has to spend the last years of his life in a home.  It goddamn sucks.

Sunday, October 24th I will be walking with Matt, my sister and her husband Frank to raise money for Alzheimer's and Dementia research through the Alzheimer's Association.  I'd love to raise more than I raised last year and that's where you come in.  I know there are a lot of great causes out there and I think you should donate to any you believe in, but if you have a few extra bucks you'd like to give toward a cause close to my heart, my appreciation would be out of this world.

You can donate by visiting my walk page, or by purchasing one of Gilda's adorable items through our "Gilda Fights Alzheimer's" Cafe Press store.  Either way would be more than appreciated by me and my entire family! 

Thank you!

Love,

Glennis

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Bridal Expo Escapade



Tuesday night I took my ladies on an escapade of Bridal proportions when we attended the Bridal Expo at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square.  Really, it was exactly like Janet's video for Escapade and by that I mean a freakin' circus.  Who would have guessed a BRIDAL expo in TIMES SQUARE would be bananaballs??

Where do I even begin?  Marcy and I showed up early just to check out the scene, but upon stepping off the elevator, we were immediately beckoned over by a woman shouting what I thought was, "Bridesmaid?" There were only a handful of people there so my confusion still confuses me.  I just couldn't get a grasp on the goings on.  The barker once again barked at us but this time I understood she was saying, "Are you the bride?"  Or... wait... something like that.  I don't know guys, I was overwhelmed!  I'd also like to point out that she was completely impossible to understand.  Every sentence of hers trailed ofattheendandshestartedmakingupwordsfardonsworthycablirtinroots.  I asked her to repeat herself so many times I almost broke my old ear horn.

 I inherited it from my granny.  The hearing loss, that is.
 
The mumbler shoved two pieces of paper in my hand and slapped a "VIB" (Very Important Bitch) sticker on my jacket lapel.  I still have no idea what the papers were, but I was told I couldn't enter the event without filling them out.  If there's anything I hate more than a mumbler it's giving out personal information which I continued to do through the rest of the event.  I'm about to put my "spam" button to good use, Google, so get ready.

Here was my plan of action: avoid conversations and eye contact, fill out forms for free vacations, eat my weight in cake, drink my weight in champagne, repeat (the last two).  I don't need to tell you guys twice that I love me some free shit, but especially in food form.  Mmmm... food shit.  Well guys, I've got news for you!  Those boothies (the ladies and gents running the bridal booths) do not mess around.  They are on you like hoarders on a garage sale!  It's all smiles and more personal information and to be honest it was not my thing.  Thankfully I had the perfect mix of ladies there.  My girls Katina and Sara lead the way scoping out which booths were worth visiting, which booths housed food (for me to house) and which were just worth the visit for the laughs.  Marcy hung back with me sensing my need for flight (or perhaps to cover me should I have an anxiety accident) and kept me sane.

The booths were pretty much what you'd expect.  Lots of jellybeans, teeth whitening and the potential for free vacations.  And a lot of this:


Freeeeeeee stufffff!!!  Come and get some FREEEEEEE STUFF!!!  BAGS AND BAGS FULL OF FREEEEEEEEEEEEEESTUUUUUUUFFF!!!

OMG what I won't do for free shit.  I filled out a form for JoS. A. Bank, for a bag which contained A FLIER and TWO MINTS.  And the mints were shitty!  Those gross white ones you get after a meal that go stale the minute you open the package.  Ug.  I did, however, walk away with a pretty sweet wooden bowl from The Bowl Store and... a tooth brush?  Some candles?  Chapstick?  I don't know, guys, I better win me a g.d. trip.

Our first aisle complete we stumbled upon one of those booths they throw you in with hundred dollar bills, crank up the air and let you go wild.  Before I could say "dolla dolla bill, yaaa" Katina had her earrings off, sleeves up and fists flyin'.  It was truly a sight to see.  I wish you guys had been there.  Oh wait!  I took video!

video 

I can't.  I'm still laughing!  Well, I for one, am impressed.  She won hundreds of dollars... nope.  Just a bag.  A bag with the Fiber One logo on it.  Yep, she was catching yogurt tops, not dolla dolla bills, yaaaa'll.  Still, it was the effort and boy did she deliver.  I don't just have any jane shmanes in my wedding party, guys.  True competitors!

After laughing for two days we needed sustenance and sought out the food booths.  We came upon a cupcake counter (my favorite kind of counter) and I enjoyed a red velvet with cream cheese frosting.  Delish.  But where, I wondered, was the booze?  Mind you there was no promise of booze, but the place was filling up and I needed something to take the edge off the bags jabbing in my side and barkers screeching in my ear.  And, you guys, there was none to be found.  Not a drop!  Oh, but there was this delicious fermented soda which I used jedi mind tricks to trick myself into thinking it was pure grain alcohol.  I mean... just a little something to take the edge off?  No?  Christ!

We stumbled upon a photo booth built for two and squeezed all four in which resulted in this:
Yes.  I took a photo booth photo of our photo booth photo.  I am truly at the height of laziness for this morning's blog post.  Anyway, as you can see, we visited a place with clouds, a palmed beach, somewhere with a partly cloudy sky and Las Vegas.  So that was pretty cool.

The best booth at the expo, and god I wish I'd taken a picture of this, was the First Response Pregnancy test booth.  Now, forgive me, but Why?  Aside from the obvious - you want to crack me and my friends up.  Oh wait, I know.  Wedding favors!  Brillz!


My MOH/sister Kelsey and my other Sparkler, Carrie, showed up just before the fashion show was set to begin.  Though I'm having my dress made and letting my ladies choose literally whatever dress they want to wear as long as they feel fabulous in it, I love a good fashion show.  I love a bad fashion show.  I just love a fashion show.  We sat for 45-minutes waiting for this shit and then when it started it was nothing but some man with a bad goatee and even worse hair cut yelling that we weren't pumped up enough and saying shit like, "I can't heaaaaar yooooou!" without irony.  He was clearly there to get the party started and no one, and I mean no one, was having it.  We soon came to realize he was there to tout his skills as a party animal.  Is that what they're called?  The guys with glow sticks and bowler hats?  Well that was he and he was... kinda lame.  Sorry, dude.  Then, instead of a fashion show, we just got a slew of DJs touting their services!  WTF, Bridal Expo!  They weren't even playing music or getting the party stahted, they were just talking about their services.  I'm sorry, but wasn't that what the booths were for??  Though I can't really complain, you guys, because I'm pretty sure I found our DJ.  Listen to this: he offers a service where they can broadcast TEXT MESSAGES from PEOPLE who AREN'T AT YOUR WEDDING on a TV SCREEN.  Right?  Pretty fanc!  So... yeah... that's who we're going with because who doesn't want to tell people who aren't invited to your wedding that they can text their well wishes to you on your big day.  Now dats classy.

Speaking of classy, I would like to bring things to a head here with the single most fabulous discovery of the night.  The double decker PARTY BUS.  Now this is not the double decker tour bus I spoke of earlier.  No my friends, this is that and sooo much more.  We were greeted by Da Dubble Decka upon exiting the Marriott.  "OOOOH MYYYY GAAAAAWSH" I screeched as it caught my eye and we all stampeeded like wild animals to climb aboard.  I'm might have shoved my pregnant sister out of the way to get there first but I can't be sure.  But you guys.  YOU GUYS.  This bus is off DA HOOK!  It's so nuts it makes you say things like OFF DA HOOK!  It's two levels of pure, disgusting, unadulterated sexy fun.  Neon lights!  TV's!  Stripper poles!!

Sexy face

Listen, we all want to dance on a stripper pole on wheels and NOW WE CAN!  I'm seriously considering this for a joint bachelor/ette party.  Very, very seriously.  It has a toilet AND a urinal, guys.  Now DAS Classy.

Welcome Home!
Shit... I want that bus.

So, there you have it peeps.  Our Bridal Expo Escapade drew to a close with dinner at Junior's where we shared in the joy that is Chicken on a Bun.  What is that you ask?  Oh, it's chicken... on a bun.

(Can you believe I couldn't find a stock photo of a chicken on a butt?)

I'm out.

Love,

Glennis

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Ask G: Drama-rama!

Today in "Ask G", TJ writes:

"I am a high school student in Westchester. I sing some. I had a horrible experience last year. I had a minor lead in our high school production of Mame! and forgot some of the lyrics in one of the performances. Afterwards, the director berated me in front of everyone in the show and insisted I apologize to the entire cast. He said I should have known my limitations and never auditioned if I couldn't hack it. He used the understudy for the remainder of the shows. It was very painful and humiliating and I haven't done anything with theater since. Well I do still come into the City some weekends and see recitals and some off-Broadway shows, but I can't imagine performing again. I already had stage fright but now I think I'm scar(r)ed forever."

Dear TJ,

I hope you don't mind cursing because I'm about to do a lot of it.  This shit burns me like the white hot embers in Naomi Campbell's eyes.  How DARE your director humiliate you in front of the entire cast.  How dare that bastard, dickwad, scumsucker!  UG!  MotherFUCKER!


OK, I feel better.

Moving on.  There is nothing at all that justifies this behavior.  Nothing.  But I'm going to say this first and get it out of the way - consider the source.  I may be speaking out of school, but I'm pretty sure that as a rule high school drama teachers didn't set out on that path.  Most of them wanted to be actors and, as awesome and rewarding a career as a h.s. teacher, drama or otherwise, can be, there might just be a little chip on some shoulders.  Him (I'm imagining this is a man so my apologies if I'm wrong) saying "you should have known your limitations" is baffling to me.  Forgetting a few lyrics does not dictate your limitations.  I've seen people on Broadway forget their lyrics.  Hell, I've forgotten my lyrics!  I made up new words to "Look What Happened To Mabel" in front of an audience in a show I produced!  It happens.  And if he was a good director he would have told you just that.  Then he would have told you that being prepared is the most important thing an actor can do.  Everyone gets nerves and knowing your lyrics and lines inside, outside and upside down is really the only way to avoid feeling that sort of embarrassment that forgetting lyrics or lines brings.  He also could have stepped back and realized what sort of embarrassment you had already experienced and avoided bringing you further embarrassment and humiliation by berating you in front of your cast.  WHAT. A. DICK.

Now, let me just say that you can not give this douche the power to scar/scare you for life.  If you love singing, and you must because why would you audition for a musical otherwise, then you must sing.  No, listen to me.  YOU MUST.  If I've realized anything in my life it's that unhappy people want everyone around them to be unhappy, too.  If singing makes you happy then you owe it to yourself to do it! 

Before I left my previous job, I worked for a miserable woman in a law firm.  When I told her I wanted to really take my acting career seriously she said something along the lines of, "you know, it's a very hard business.  The chances of you making it are really slim.  You might as well just stay here until I retire and take over my job."  I get what she was saying, but it still really ticks me off.  How dare she tell me not to pursue my dream because I "might not make it".  The thing people don't understand is that there are many levels of "making it".  I might not ever be in a Vogue spread or on the cover of US Weekly, but I make a living using my talent and I enjoy every single minute of it.  Let me tell you, TJ, you can do the very same thing but you have to try!

I hate this person for robbing you of your confidence, but think of it as a momentary laps.  The best revenge you can take in this case is to pursue what you love, be it singing or otherwise, with all your heart and live the happiest life you can.  Your stage fright will lessen with each performance, but you have to stumble a few times before you soar.  (Wow, I really do think I'm Dr. Phil don't I?)

And let me say lastly, if you give up singing/performing because of this guy I will be really pissed.  I will come and hunt you down and cast you in one of my shows and make you love it again.  Don't make me do that - I'm really busy.

Keep on fighting the good fight!!

xG

Ask G: Terribly Passive

In today's edition of "Ask G, Anonymous writes:

"I am terribly passive. I don't know why my opinion is the slightest bit valid. Other people have no problem drawing boundaries in their life, pursuing what they want, and simply not accepting no for an answer when the situation dictates. Everyone I know seems to believe without question they deserve the finest things in life, and they pursue their goals and dreams relentlessly. They know they are gifted in some way and won't allow anyone to infringe on their talents and happiness. If they see others threatening their well-being, they use all their resources to keep themselves and their loved ones and friends protected. Must I have this sort of personality to be happy? If so, how will I ever develop it? In essence, I just can't stand conflict: there is not a person nor a thing in my life so valuable that I wouldn't acquiesce if someone trying to damage it pressed hard enough."

Dear Terribly Passive:


Let me just say right off the bat - I can completely relate to everything you're saying.  I remember the first day I sat down in therapy I said - and I quote, "I just can't understand those girls who unapologetically ask for what they want."  It was such an outrageous notion - asking for what you want and feeling you deserve it.  And let me be clear - asking for what you want is not the same thing as demanding people buy you ponies and trips to Fiji (though it's fine to want those things - I currently want both of them).  Asking for what you want is asking for what you deserve.  Respect, justice, basic human decency - the same things everyone should feel entitled to. 

I spent most of my life deferring to other people.  I let others make my decisions and, when it pissed me off, I stood by and let the rage burn inside so as to avoid confrontation.  You know what happened?  I became a very sad, very angry and very sick person.  I was willing to sacrifice my own health in order to make someone else happy.  Pretty fucked up when you put it that way, right?  It sounds like you might be doing the same thing.
 
Do you have to be the kind of person who goes to any length to get what they want in order to be happy?  I don't think so.  But I do think when you start to realize how powerful you are you will realize how to harness that power and use it to fairly and justly get what you want while feeling you deserve it.  You need to learn stand up for what you believe is right just like you'd need to learn how to ride a bike.  Changing the patterns, changing the way you react to things - it all takes time and practice.  I know you want to be happy and I'm pretty sure you feel like you don't deserve it.  Well I'm here to tell you you DO.  But you have to do the work.  You're not going to row that boat to shore by throwing out your paddles and wishing for wind. (Said in my best Dr. Phil voice.)  You have to get down and dirty and DO THE WORK and, as I said yesterday, in my case The Work = therapy.  Going to therapy doesn't have to mean you're "sick" or "broken" or any other terrible word associated with getting help.  It's just an hour a week where you get to sit with an unbiased professional to get that stuff out of your brain.  I heard a quote once, and I'm going to mangle it, but the jist of it was "once the lights are on, they can't be turned off."  Basically, once you say something out loud enough times you'll truly be illuminated by it, learn from it and use it to move forward and grow out of that dark, confusing place.


If you have health insurance - great!  You're one of the lucky ones and can find a therapist through your providor.  If you're without insurance and located in NYC there is a great resource available for payments on a sliding-scale called The National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis (NPAP).  You have to do an intake interview (which they unfortunately charge for), but it's a great option and I have friends who use and speak very highly of this service.  http://www.npap.org/about/index.html


I hope this helped a little, Anonymous.  I know how terrible it can be to feel unworthy of happiness.  You are worth something.  You are worth a lot.  Your opinions are valid and people want to hear them.  It sounds daunting, but take it one session at a time and try to be as honest as you can.  We need more strong, happy, confident women in this world!  Best of luck to you, keep me updated, and remember - you're not alone!!

xG

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Ask G

It's always been a dream of mine, along with roller-feet (I will make that happen) to write an advice column.  Not a jokey, "get a face transplant" kind of column, but a real "tell it like it is, Clair Huxtable/Julia Sugarbaker" *snap*, column.  My reasons are twofold - A) I like to hear myself talk and writing is almost like talking and B) I have done the work.

Let's just call a spade a spade, shall we?  THE WORK = Therapy.  I've been in therapy for 6+ years and, if we're being completely honest, I'm about to go into twice-a-week sessions because that's how awesome I want to be.  You hear me barkin, dawgs??  I won't bore you with my sob story, but let's just say I went from a bumbling pile of sad to... well, at the risk of sounding cheeseballs (mmm, cheeseballs), a much more secure person but still a work in progress.  Hey, just like Lindsay Lohan, right??  (Damn I still need to write her an open letter for ruining my financial stability last year... more to come on that another time.)  Not only have I gained insights on what it takes to be a stable, secure and sensational WO-to-the-MAN, I am a fantastic problem solver, big-picture seer and advice doler-outer.

My advice runs the gamut from dating and love, fashion, home decor and organization to gift giving, pets and kids!  Listen, I'm no expert on any of that shit, but I am the perfect mix of logical and creative and, listen, why do I have to explain myself you're the one who asked for advice in the first place!  Gaaawhhdd... just write me already will you?

answermecommag @ gmail . com

(All correspondence will be posted, anonymously, on this blog.)

You'll be making my day, I might make yours and I'll have one more thing to write about in this getting-less-dusty-by-the-minute blog.

Love,

Glennis

Who Are You Wearing?

As I mentioned in yesterday's ELO post (which contained miiinor sprinkles of my disturbance over being called, "ma'am" in Forever 12-year-old-sales-associates-as-far-as-the-eye-can-see), I shop at Forever 21.  It's not something I'm proud of and, like any vice, I'm trying to quit.  True, I've purchased some pretty sweet key items for my wardrobe including blue leggings (market value: .0001/cent) which, if I'm being completely honest make me look like I've stuffed those potato sack babies you carry around in high school to keep you from getting prego, inside.  Guess what else will keep you from getting prego?  Blue leggings.  I mean I try to rock them and certain times I do.  Post-workout?  Boom.  Pre-bedtime?  Nailed it.  Camping trip?  Color me obvious.  Here's the thing - when I wear these blue leggings any other time, say out in PUBLIC, I get the sneaking suspicion that my friends are biting their tongues and thinking, "well, we can't win them all."  Which is why, dear friends, I am vowing right now to stop buying cheap clothing that falls apart in the wash and spend money on sturdy, staunch, republican-style clothing.  Wait, scratch that last part.

I've recently come across a few items of clothing that fall under that category and have kind of changed my life a little, you guys.  First: jeggings.  Now wait, stop, hold up, listen.  I knoooow what you're thinking.  How can I possibly tout something as immature as mashed clothing after the previous paragraph?  I agree... Jeggings are ridiculous.  Mashed clothing is ridiculous (though very convenient)... What's next: Shackets?  The shirt/jacket!  Hairts!  Hair hats!  Gloothbrush!  Toothbrush gloves!  (Wait, that's actually brilliant and yes I realize a toothbrush is not clothing.  Gaawhddd.)  I get it, guys.  I felt the same way.  But the more I said that magical word, "jeggings" the more it grew on me and when I said it with a regal British tongue it really sounded less child-like and more like something a fancy, but not too fancy, lady would wear.  And so I purchased some from H&M which is like Forever 21's still kind of cheap cousin who still goes out to the clubs but is realizing she wants to settle down and find "the one".

You guys, look how cute I look in them!















Shh, shh, shh... of course that's me.

So, yes, I am the proud owner of a clothing mashup and you know what?  They've kind of changed my life.  Regular old jeans are SO two thousand and late!

Next up: Outerwear.  I've been obsessing over this jacket from Esprit for, oh, as long as I can remember (a week).  I walked out of the store without it the first time for two reasons.  One: overly pushy sales associate who literally complimented everything, and I do mean everything, on my body.  Literally everything.  I'm not kidding.  Everything.  I had to pull her out of my butt before I left the store.  (The alarm sounded.)  Don't get me wrong, I love me a Glesbian, but this was just Goldie Hawn-Overboard.  So, to prove my point (I'll show her) I walked out without the jacket.  And might I add that because I'm a chicken in those situations I told her my fiance would come back and purchase it for me for Christmas.  "No, no!  He'll deeeeefinitely be back.  Oh, probably today.  He's such a sweetie!  Always buying me coats and stuff.  OK well... bye!"  And I skulk out the door.  Why is that always so awkward?
Second: though they were advertising 25% off all outerwear (and still are!), the jacket was over $200 and that I just can't justify.  Even when the pushy sales assoshe keeps telling me the sale will probably only last a day.  I think she earned her coffee because she Always Be Closin.  My point is: I walked out without the jacket.  Then a week went by and I came to my goddamn senses (i.e. the weather got colder) and went back in for my baby and nothing has been the same since.













I die.  I die, I die, I die.  The warmest jacket I've ever owned, so adorable and very figure-flattering which is important so you don't feel like a lumpy baby-potato sack all through the winter.  And the best part?  Spending a little more on this jacket assures me it won't fall apart, lump up, lose buttons or fade for a while.  I'm kind of an adult, you guys.  (I say while watching Fraggle Rock.)

Next: Two Boots
The number one clothing item I'm complimented on and asked about are my super awesome kick-ass Frye boots.  Though these were purchased over a year ago I can't say enough about them.  Rain, shine, snow, sleet, even ice, these boots have served me well.  They take about a week to break in, but once you do they can be worn anywhere and with just about anything.  Even jeggings!  In fact, they're the perfect boot for jeggings!  Wait, why don't we all just wear Bants?  Boot-pants?  We've come so far and yet...  Anyway, these boots are number one in my book and Christmas is just around the corner so maybe when you walk out giving the old "it'll be a Christmas gift from my man!" schpeel you won't be fibbing out your face hole.
 

















Well, you heard it here first, people.  From now on I steer clear of that Forever Wasteland of delicates (because they're so poorly made) and blue leggings and start shopping like an adult.  A very broke adult who purchases clothing once a year.

Love,

Glennis

Monday, October 18, 2010

I Prefer ELO

Sing it with me, y'all!

I, too, prefer ELO, Randy Newman!

I'm sure you're all well aware of this from my previous statement, but I'll say it again: I am absolutely ELObsessed with Electric Light Orchestra.  If ever there was a perfect band, IMO it's ELO.  My love is so strong I once created a t-shirt in their honor, but it's more than love, it's LURV...slurpy, sloppy, uncontrollable love.  Well, you guys, on Saturday night my life changed a little bit.  Not in that, "a baby came out of my lady pocket!" kind of way, more like the, "I saw the Loser's Lounge tribute to ELO, ON-J and Xanadu" way. Suck it, babies!  This was way better!  My Xana-date for the evening was Miss Marcy Girt. We've long bonded over a shared love of everything 70's/disco so I knew we'd have fun, but that's not saying a lot since we could have fun brushing Alpacas.  (And we know from experience.)  Aaaanywayzles, I knew we'd have a great time.  But wow, it was better than great... it was Electrifying! We got chills! They were multiplying! We turned to stone! Our joy was raining! All over the world! You have to believe... it was Magic!


The entire night, without hyperbole, was out of this world, but the highlight for me, aside from seeing my (obvious) talent-crush Joe McGinty and almost falling off my stool while dancing to "Physical", was Tricia Scotti's performance of "Telephone Line".  I'm not saying I cried, but my eyes were definitely leaking some sort of liquid and I felt this overwhelming...feeling.  Oh, how can I explain this?  It's kind of how I felt the last time someone called me ma'am (Forever 21, last Tuesday).  It was like that.  LL's version of an already beautiful song was chilling, but Scotti really brought the piece home.  There was something about hearing a woman sing those lyrics that struck a chord with me.  Uh, oh... don't tell my therapist!  (See... I avoid real feelings by making jokes.)  I'm awaiting the addition to their CD section with bated breath.  There's also this little part of me that loves when backup singers, as Scotti is for Loser's Lounge, take center stage.  I'm not sure where it stems from, but I love it, guys.  Oh wait, I know - Adventures In Baby Sitting!  Right guys? (No? Nothing like that? Shhhhh shh shh, let me have this.  I love that movie ALMOST as much as I love ELO.)

Marcy and I tried our darndest to get a table though we didn't have a reservation, but none were open.  The place was packed to the gills, but we snagged a few seats by the front entrance and really that was better than a table.  First because I would have eaten all of Joe's Pub, Second because we were inconspicuously able to dance to the adorable Jack Skuller & Sophie (Just Sophie)'s rendition of "You're the One That I Want".  14-year-old Jack and she's-a-lady-so-we-won't-ask-but-I'm-guessing-the-same Sophie could not have been more adorable.  Don't believe me?  Check Jack:


And Sophie:


(Um... Sophie?  You are amazeballs.)

ADORABLE.  Listen, I'm sure that's the last thing they'd want to hear at that age.  I get it.  But, some day, some day they'll thank me.  And that day will be when they're trying on clothes at Forever 21 and a 12-year-old sales associate calls them ma'am.  Then they'll thank me.  Ahem.  Um... Marcy and I also pretty much made up an entire seated dance to "Do Ya", performed by Mike Fornatale.  The night might have been lacking in one area and that was spontaneous audience choreography.  Ah well maybe next time, folks.

For my fellow ELObsessies, I took a few videos. For Nick Stevens, Sean Altman singing Showdown, as this is our shared ELO-fave:

video













 

And for Brandy Barber because, as I sat there enjoying myself like a selfish little guppy I realized I was about to witness what was probably her musical wet dream and hadn't even bothered to invite her (some friend I am!), Seth Berkowitz & Michal The Girl singing Suddenly from Xanadu:

video

The next Loser's Lounge, I'm told, will play in December - a tribute to the Rat Pack.  Let's all go, shall we?  We shall.

Love,

Glennis