Monday, May 24, 2010

How not to be a schlumpadinka !

I don't know how many of you remember (or happened to be viewing) when Oprah had a segment on her show- a year or so back- which centered on her friends and their apparent lack of fashion sense and customary appearance. I mention this because it was Oprah who coined the term schlumpadinka on the show~ although, to be honest, it sounds rather Jewish doesn't it ? No matter.

It turned out to be hysterically funny in one sense and yet also a head turner for everyone concerning the American penchant for dressing a little too far down most days. I don't know if it started with actors and celebrities hounded by paparazzi when they are obviously not looking their best but I'd like to know why the average citizen thinks so little of their appearance in public that they will show up at the post office, grocery store or other mundane errand stops looking like they just got out of bed or were run over by a truck ! Why don't they stay at home and check out the mirror first ? Huh. Your guess would be better than mine I'll bet.

Now this is not to say I haven't had my serious bad lapses in taste when I've little time to do my daily dozen and get on with my day. I'll be honest and tell you that I don't dress like Beaver Cleaver's mother when I work in a kitchen or wear tight clothes, like Blondie, when I'm sitting and pounding away at a P.C. I don't put on the dog to go take the dog for a walk but when it comes to meeting and greeting the public I am aware that video cameras are everywhere and I would rather make an effort to make myself look presentable for nice affairs and events. Sometimes I try to outdo myself and try to look at least as nice as Marilyn Monroe, although I am not making a comparison, trust me !

About a year or so ago, the wife of a good friend of mine sent me an e-mail called The People of Wal-Mart and there were all manner of folk dressed either wacky, demented, sexily inappropriate or completely disgusting. Completely disgusting, you ask? How about someone wearing a T-shirt that has, "I just farted", emblazoned on the back? I suppose we should call him schlumpadink-him ?

At any rate my feeling is that people everywhere ought to start making more of an effort at least when they are shopping in stores or making the rounds where a lot of people congregate. You might think this is nit-picking or even being hypocritical. I did say I have my schlumpadinka moments or hours depending on what I'm trying to accomplish. Perhaps adding a little style to something very casual isn't out of the question. French women have been doing that for years and with a true knack for accessorizing simple outfits. What's wrong with adding a hat, scarf or little bauble of jewelry?

This is just a passing observation, but many middle aged to advanced middle age women dress in clothes too large for their frame. I'm not sure exactly when that started but it seems to me that for a desperate span of years women ran around in sweat outfits to do everything. The sweat outfit decade! Phew! It's over and it's time to look for a much more flattering wardrobe. God gave women curves for a very good reason and I don't think it's out of the question to show them off a little. As Jim Morrison said, "no eternal reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn." So my advice is stop wearing something that you think is hiding something unacceptable. God gave you those assets for a reason and if you're clever you can show off that wonderful waistline without knocking everybody's eyeballs out. You may have to make some outfits, by the way.

There are designers who have made a difference in the fashion world by creating flattering outfits for women of all sizes and just in case you think you would not want to make the best of your figure, I want you to know that Bali is still making undergarments that reapportion your figure to the acceptable curves standard. Why not make use of them ? They still are affordable and will help you be the best you ! I understand that even these beanpole sylphs walking around are using the very same type of garment as outerwear to make themselves look more like their better endowed sisters! How's that for a switch ?

Now, about that un-made-up face. I know. I know. Do I need to look like Heather Locklear or Pamela Sue Anderson to make a Hamburger Helper meal for this lump of a boyfriend? My advice is that if you want the kind of service you used to get in stores try putting on a little blush, some lipstick coupled with lip gloss so you won't look like Bette Davis or Joan Crawford on a bad day. Some light fragrance will do wonders for how you are perceived by store clerks and cashiers, too !

If you feel unsure of yourself with the amount of make-up you've applied you can always remove what you think is over the top. The whole idea is to feel more relaxed and confident about yourself so make yourself happy. If you feel like a clown you'll probably act like it, and if it feels like too much- it probably is too much. Just remove it to the acceptable level you want to achieve.
I suppose selling Avon got me on this new track of being more aware of my every day appearance. I would remind everybody that the way you look is the first perception people will have about you and it's better that they see something positive in almost any given situation. Well, you better get back to work....

Glamorous hugs and kisses from

The Castle Lady

Monday, May 17, 2010

Hear the other side.

That quote by Saint Augustine is a flagship citation for anyone who truly wishes to be a peacemaker.

I have met a few of those in my time. I have often tried to be one myself and have had some successes but I'd be lying if I didn't tell you that sometimes I have failed at it miserably. I don't know if that is a failing of my own but I can say unequivocally that when I try to make peace I am earnest and quite sober about it. People who are enraged are impossible to appease and I've never seen a person reach this stage of loss of control who can easily be laughed off. When someone is fighting to be taken seriously they refuse to laugh. They are also the most difficult people to live and work with on all counts. So what's the answer?

Remember that 70s quote that was on almost everyone's lips? (If you're not part of the solution then you're part of the problem.) It's logic that's difficult to disprove and I find is most often right. In order to have peace it has to be in your head first. If you can't find it there and hang onto it then don't expect to get in the middle of someone else's affairs and make peace. This is not to say that everyone who has head problems makes problems for everyone else. That isn't my point. However, if you cannot make peace with yourself you're not an obvious candidate to make peace for the world. You basically have to be able to focus on being a peacemaker, make it your priority and then there's one other type of solution that always seems to work wonders. Learn how to listen to people. They often say things they don't mean when they are scared, lonely or just hurting. People will strike out at others when they feel bereft of any other recourse. People are basically selfish and are badly in need of attention. If you take these things into consideration and you really care about people you're half way to being a true intercessor to the world. It badly needs you.

Blessed kisses from
The Castle Lady