coffee is for closers

Late, late, late last night, after a wedding so good it nearly broke me of my secret plans to elope should I ever tie the knot myself, I ended up alone in a hotel room with the three bridesmaids, all of whom were fairly drunk. None the less, I am terribly disappointed to admit that Helen Jane still doesn


My mother, indignant about my earlier posting regarding her shampoos and conditioners, helpfully pointed out the inaccuracy of the data I had presented; the thirty two bottles weren’t all hers, she explained, and they also weren’t all shampoo. Drawing on her background as a field-leading social science researcher, she conducted a more rigorous examination, allowing me to present this revised tally:

Along Side of Shower:
– 5 bottles of her shampoo
– 9 bottles of her conditioner
– 7 bottles of my father’s (or possibly my brother’s) shampoo
– 8 bottles of body wash
– 3 bottles of face wash
– 1 bottle of unidentifiable amber liquid

I stand corrected. Thanks, mom, for clearing that up.

shower time

I’m hoping my mother has the world’s silkiest, cleanest, bounciest and most vibrant hair, because otherwise the 32 (yes, thirty two) bottles of shampoo and conditioner in her shower might seem a bit like overkill.

nuptial news

Though I could apparently go all night fleshing out the random posting ideas horded and festering in my brain over the past week, I’m hoping to get in at least a token amount of sleep before Helen Jane’s wedding (and subsequent shindig) tomorrow evening, so I’m stopping here. First, however, a few last pre-matrimonial thoughts:
– Helen Jane absolutely, totally, and completely rocks the proverbial Kasbah, and I’m thrilled I’ll be there when she walks down the aisle. Having initially met her online, I now even have some hope for this new-fangled so-called Information Superhighway.
– Also, her three bridesmaids are foxy, foxy, foxy.
– One of them, however, secretly can’t stand one of the others, so I’m kind of hoping for a catfight. Though given the brains differential between the two, I sadly suspect the detest will remain safely undetected. [Personal Note: Sorry, HJ; I know it’s your wedding and all, and I should totally be rooting for smooth and happy and whatever. But a catfight! Let a guy dream.]

– Also, at the Thursday pre-pre-wedding BBQ, after a few too many beers and a last shot of Jaeger (soon to no longer be her namesake drink), Helen Jane offered ten bucks if I could get all three bridesmaids to go to bed with me, at the same time. Which, while I don’t really foresee happening, would probably trump the catfight.
– While kayaking down the lovely tidal Napa River may sound like a wonderful day-before-the-wedding event, it’s slightly less so when the temperature in Napa is 107 degrees.
– And, finally, to the many faithful readers who have written in regarding Sarah Brown, I regret to inform that she will not be in attendance, having been unable to escape the chains and shackles of her day job. She will, however, be in NYC next week, so I get to stalk her in real life after all.

I’m off to bed.

newman’s first law of booty magnetism

Apropos my last post, I’ve recently been honing a gender-differentiated theory on attractiveness and attraction. Though it’s still rough, I think I’m ready to share the basics:

Guys: At first glance, we boys talk a big game, rating women ruthlessly (“look at her calves; I can’t give her better than a seven”). But when it comes down to it, we don’t really value looks as much as our guy-banter implies. We do, however, have a minimum attractiveness threshold, a point below which, no matter how much we like the girl, we just couldn’t bring ourselves to see her naked. Though it’s strictly inviolable (consider the number of guys who, though feeling remarkably guilty about it, have a close female friend they’d marry if only she were slightly more attractive), it’s also probably much lower than girls would likely assume (rarely higer than a six, even for the most critical men). So long as she’s above the minimum cutoff, a cool girl the guy loves to spend time with trumps a hotter-but-boring one every time. In other words, while we guys have an inviolable minimum, above that line we weight personality more heavily than looks.

Girls: Ladies, however, have no fixed minimum. As Voltaire observed, give a charming guy ten minutes to talk away his ugly face and he could bed the Queen of France. (Hence the vast majority of women who have dated [or fallen in love with] men they initially found horribly unattractive – something we guys find inconceivable.) Conversely, however, women factor in attractiveness the whole way up; there is no point after which additional beauty doesn’t much matter. Which is to say, with most women, a totally rockin’ 7 would face stiff competition from a merely reasonably interesting 10.

The groups of friends on which I’ve tested the theory have nearly universally agreed, but I’d love to hear from readers who can help hone the details (or perhaps rebut my hopethesis altogether). If you’ve gleaned some sharable yet hard-earned insight from the battlefields of love,

all grows up

You know when you’re on a plane, and you’re one of the early boarders, and the seat next to you is empty, and every time a really, really hot girl walks on you think “please, please, please let her seat be next to mine”? Well, this time, hers was. Though, sadly, she had the brains of toothpaste. Which, frankly, in my younger days, would not have even been cause for momentary pause (as several regrettable past exploits amply demonstrated). This time, however, when at the end of the flight, she asked if I’d maybe want to meet up for drinks at some point in San Francisco, I instead demurred, saying that I’d just be in for a night or two, and would be terribly busy the whole time.

Passing up easy hot-stupid-girl booty. The first sign of adulthood?

not ponytails or cottontails

Over dinner with my family, I suddenly remembered an episode of DuckTales where Scrooge explains the story behind his Lucky Dime – in short, that he earned it through the hard work of shining the shoes of the first customer of his first company, a nascent shoe shine business; and, that (more importantly) after realizing he’d never make enough money to swim through just by busting his ass at the shine chair, he made his motto “work smarter, not harder,” invented an elaborate contraption based on an old bicycle that could shine five pairs of shoes at a time, and then hired in an ever-increasing flotilla of young shoe shine machinists.

Frankly, I was shocked and thrilled by the recollection, as though “work smarter, not harder” has been my mantra for at least the past decade, I’d always assumed I picked it up from some business book. Instead, while (as Will Hunting eloquently described) the equivalent of an MIT undergrad degree can be had for five dollars of late fees at the public library, apparently the Harvard Business School equivalent runs at the cost of a DuckTales DVD rental. How exciting to finally have good advice to pass on to up-and-coming entrepreneurs!

breaking the seal

In the past few busy and largely internet access-less days, posting ideas have been logjamming the self-aggrandizement lobe of my brain. With MovableType once again at my fingertips, I’ll be spilling those out as fast as I coherently can (given my concurrent work and wedding schedule). Stay tuned.

nerd happiness

I’ve yet to discover a guilty pleasure greater than staying up way into the night so absorbed by a novel that I can’t possibly put it down without finishing, greater than reading and weighing and rereading the final sentence, snapping the back cover closed, turning off my bedside lamp, and falling into a deep, contented sleep.