Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Nicer Than Some People

Last week I interviewed Paris Hilton for Genlux magazine. I know that what I'm about to say will cause some of you to leave me mean comments, or take me off your blogroll, or send me text messages that say 'Sellout!' (And that's just from my mother.)

So here goes.

I actually liked her.

(Okay, now I know at least one of you will leave a bag of flaming dog poop on my doorstep, to which I say, bring it on - our cat has taken a crap twice on our bed, so don't think I can't handle some poop packaged neatly in a bag.)

I admit I used to roll my eyes occasionally when I heard her name, and even cringed a little when I heard I'd be interviewing her. But I have to say she was actually one of the nicest, and most gracious people I've ever met. Nicer than most celebrities I've met. Hell, nicer than some non-celebrities I've met. Certainly nicer than most non-celebrities I've met in Trader Joes.

I can't divulge much of our interview until the issue comes out, but she did surprise me with her sense of humor, her business smarts and her take on politics. Some of it made it into the interview, and some didn't. Some of it, like her political views, were said off the record and she asked (very nicely) that it not be included in the interview. I'm going to save the tape, though, in case she is ever asked to be the Vice Presidential nominee and then that thing is going straight over to the National Enquirer to help pay for my new kitchen.

We met on the rooftop of this new hotel in Beverly Hills. They have a private bar up there with cabanas, and apparently Paris likes to hang out there. A few days prior to the interview I was told we'd be meeting at Paris' house, which I'm glad didn't happen - I've never set foot in a celebrity's home, and I'm not sure I'd know how to act. I think the urge to steal something would be too great - surely she wouldn't miss these two nice diamond encrusted urns, or this rack of Chanel dresses? And then I'd have to take some pictures of myself when she wasn't looking, maybe lounging in her bathtub pretending to soap myself down with my tape recorder.

There were two interviews before me, and Paris was running late. One of her assistants was already there and told us to order whatever we wanted to eat and drink from the bar, so we did. Which was preferable to what I would have been doing, which is selling after-school snacks on the playground at Kiyomi's school. Call me shallow, but I think I totally deserved that nice glass of chardonnay and those curried tuna rolls after years of hawking juice boxes and Cheez-Its to grade-schoolers in the hot sun.

Paris arrived, surprisingly without an entourage and with only her manager. She apologized to everyone for being late, then got down to business, blazing through two interviews (one with AP and one with Reuters) and a photo shoot in the span of around an hour. I had the most time for my interview, around 90 minutes, during which time she only stopped once to take a phone call from her sister Nicky. I, on the other hand, had to pause around five times to check my tape recorders since I'm always convinced I'm going to get home and there'll be nothing on there but static. Or, that one of them will fail and then the recorder that contains the only good recording will fall underneath my tire as I'm fumbling for my keys and then my car will accidentally shift into gear and roll over it. It's really exhausting, this whole paranoia thing.

After the whole thing was over she gave me a hug, posed for a picture on my iPhone and then asked if she could write a little note to each of my girls, which she did. I decided to hang out there for awhile, have an espresso and really milk this whole celebrity-on-a-rooftop vibe, even though I had to pay for that coffee myself. Oh, and I checked those tape recorders one more time.

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tags: | genlux magazine

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

We're Baking You A Shower Cake!

There was a virtual baby shower going on for Kristen of Motherhood Uncensored and Rebecca of Girl's Gone Child. Unfortunately I missed it, but luckily I have my two girls here to bake a cake to make up for it. This was taken eight years ago, when Kira was four and Kiyomi was two, way back before they forbid me to post any pictures of them on my blog. Aren't they adorable? I think this was our very first cake-making experience together.

Now they're tweens, and don't really have time to bake since they're busy IM'ing their friends and downloading songs onto their iPods. I guess I will have to bake the cake, and they'll help. Well, they'll tell me they'll help, but then discover that they have too much homework, or iCarly is on, or they'll be involved with a four-way chat online and can't pull themselves away from the computer. But at least I can ask them to keep an eye on the timer so the cake won't burn, since the computer is right there in the kitchen.

Oh, but then Kira's friend Sydney called and they started talking about the new White Stripes song and she forgot about the timer. Kiyomi forgot about the timer, too, because she was in her bedroom trying to make a tiara for the cat out of a coffee filter, and they both forgot to tell me they weren't keeping an eye on the cake anymore.

I smelled something burning, so I ran to the kitchen. I took the cake out of the oven, except it wasn't really a cake anymore, more of big brownie. I managed to scoop the middle out in big chunks, and put the whole thing on a pretty plate. I think I ate half of it myself, since the girls said someone had emailed them one of those bogus internet stories about brownies containing chicken feet, and they were afraid to eat it.

Where was I? Oh yes, the baby shower!

Kristen and Rebecca, congratulations on your bundles of joy on the way. I'm so happy for you, and know that you'll both continue to be wonderful mothers. You've all been through it before, so there's nothing I can tell you that you don't know already. Although, I just realized that neither of you have tween girls (yet) and I do. So here's the best advice I can think of at this late hour:

Just go to the bakery and buy the damn cake.


Thanks to our hostesses, Catherine, Katie, Liz and Julie, who no doubt had a perfectly lovely cake for the occasion.

Check out the rest of the shower festivities here!

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Monday, September 08, 2008

Cutest Wittle Kittie Video Ever!!! Sewiously!!!

Earlier this year when we were looking for a new kitten, my good friend Scott (hi Scott!) called me with a suggestion. He said I should get the girls a kitten he had seen, a new breed that have really short legs, and tiny ears. I didn't say anything to him then, but I remember thinking to myself that it would be just too sad to get the girls a pet that everyone feels sorry for. It would be like getting them a two-headed calf or a dog with only two front legs that has one of those teeny carts attached to its ass.

But then he sent me this video of that same breed the other day, and I have to admit that this is the cutest freakin' kitten I've ever seen in my life. Seriously. Usually when someone emails me an animal video I roll my eyes and press 'delete,' but I've watched this one around fifty times. Everytime it's over I cock my head to the side, say "awwwwww," clap my hands like a circus monkey and hit 'replay.' Rigel's starting to get annoyed, but then I pointed out that he does the very same thing every time he watches Bladerunner.

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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Dita Von Teese and a Side of Brussel Sprouts

A few weeks ago I interviewed Dita Von Teese for the current issue of Genlux magazine. In case you aren't familiar with her, she's the burlesque dancer, pinup model and actress who has been the face of M•A•C Cosmetics for the past couple of years, and the designer of the next line of lingerie coming out from Wonderbra.

Oh yeah - and she used to be married to Marilyn Manson.

Unfortunately she wouldn't talk at all about Manson, wouldn't spill even one tiny tidbit for me to put into my interview. Although, off the record she did say that she didn't think it was him in this video. And I was kind of hoping the guy had actually gone bald.

I have to say it was one of the most enjoyable interviews I've done, and it would have been even if the magazine hadn't paid for an extremely nice lunch in a trendy upscale restaurant where I got to have a very expensive glass of wine. Von Teese was totally down to earth, candid, funny and pretty open about talking about all aspects of her life. Never mind the fact that she parties with Christian Loubitin (who regularly sends her shoes), hung out with Paolo Coelho at Cannes and can walk into Chanel and pick out whatever she wants - I felt like I was just hanging out chatting with one of my girlfriends. That is, if one of my girlfriends made $160,ooo for a single dance performance at a party in Russia.

While ordering our meal, we discovered we both dug brussels sprouts and decided to share a plate. I'm not lying when I say that that was the highlight of my month, sharing an order of cabbage-like vegetables with the Queen of Burlesque.

Hey, calm down - of course I don't expect you spend your hard-earned cash just to read my piddling words. You can read them here for free.

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tags: | genlux magazine |

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