Donna says she’s enjoying the dating process more now than she did several years ago, and she credits, of all things, demographics:

Men in their early 30’s still want cheerleaders… men in their forties are just grateful for anyone.

Well, not all men in their forties.

Then again, at fifty-seven, I don’t have a whole hell of a lot of room to talk.

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Winning with two pair

Once in a while, the shoe offerings runneth over, so we’re giving these the Modified Certs treatment: two, two, two pairs in one single post. Since the resemblance between them is next to nil, I figure I can get away with that.

Funky K-Swiss shoeThis specimen was found by Teresa at a DSW store. It’s part of the Blade-Light Recover line by K-Swiss, which makes it the antithesis of a running shoe: supposedly, you put these on after a run to rest your tired soles. Zappos has this in several colors, some fairly loud, but they don’t seem to have this particular shade. To swipe some of Teresa’s own description:

[T]hey looked like they might be comfortable. I was right, they are like a great pair of slippers. But I’m gonna look pretty silly wearing them with shorts. No, they won’t go with shorts at all.

And she counsels:

BTW — if anyone is interested in getting their own pair they run really small. I generally wear an 8.5 to 9. I had to get these in a 9.5 for them to fit.

This is consistent with the findings of Zappos customers, half of whom said they felt a half size smaller than marked.

New heels by Calleen Cordero“Trust me when I say you want a pair of these,” tweeted fashion/celeb photographer Emily Perez, and once I got a look at it, I knew I was going to be pestering her for the details. It’s from Calleen Cordero, who specializes in handcrafted shoes and accessories, the sort we’d dub “artisan” today, and apparently it’s from a new collection which will be unveiled Any Day Now. (For comparison, here’s the current collection.) Says Perez, it’s even got an orthopedic sole. If I can contrive some excuse to drop into Gretta Sloane’s at Nichols Hills Plaza, I might even get to see these up close, since nobody I know is likely to be wearing them. (Perez was here in the city earlier this month, and I missed her, which shows you how far out of the loop I really am.)

You’re shaking your head. Allow me to remind you of the words of Teresa: “Remember you can never have too many pairs of shoes.”

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Jeerful givers

Ah, those evil zillionaires and their horrible philanthropy:

It occurs to me that a significant part — probably not the larger part, but definitely present — of the “tax loopholes for rich people” the Left decries would be charitable giving.

That would be the same Left that sneers that our government ought to give more to other countries and do more for the poor in this country, too.

I demur just slightly. Your average statist, who doesn’t necessarily have to be on the political left (remember Mike Huckabee?), objects less to the tax preferences than to the fact that there’s something going on without his supervision, or even his approval. The dreadful 2004 earthquake in the Indian Ocean, which caused major havoc, particularly in Indonesia, brought a $35 million pledge from Washington, which was roundly derided for its inadequacy. The fact that individual Americans had already kicked in several times that figure on their own apparently didn’t count. The government eventually authorized $350 million, not quite a buck and a quarter per American, and that dollar and change was manifestly more important to the statists than, for instance, the somewhat greater sum I sent through a private charity. (Which, incidentally, was deductible.)

Still, this seems pretty inarguable:

[T]hey’re really saying that it’s better to mulct funds from the middle class and have all-wise central planners dole them out (while taking a little something for themselves and their pet Priuses or Lexii) instead of J. Random Millionaire writing a whacking huge check to the Brothers Of The Perpetual Breadline.

Perhaps it’s finally dawned on them that if they taxed JRM and his peers at 100 percent from this day forward, they still couldn’t balance the budget. Assuming, of course, you can get them even to write one.

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A hanging in the twilight canopy

The Adaptive Curmudgeon notes that some of us might have more than one copy of the 5th Dimension’s “Up, Up and Away”:

Somewhere there is a person who has purchased the same rendition … on 33 RPM LP, 8 track, cassette, CD, and now he has it on iTunes. The day when he loses his iPod in a Dubai airport is the day he’ll start fondly dreaming of that big cabinet full of LPs he lugged around in college. Then, ever so slowly, like the setting of the sun, the realization that he’s spent the better part of a car payment on just one song will seep into his bones and kill his soul.

That is the day he’ll stop buying a goddamn thing.

You do not want to know how much I’ve spent on Beatles issues and reissues in the past half-century. (Tony Sheridan and the, um, “Beat Brothers” cut a single of “My Bonnie” — you know, the one who lies over the ocean — in nineteen freaking sixty-one.)

Although I suspect there will be people who will forgive me for that expense and despise me for the $2.28 I’ve spent on Rebecca Black.

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Quote of the week

Greg Gutfeld, host of the Fox News program Red Eye, on a subject near and dear to some of us:

The worst five words you can hear at a party are, “Have you read my blog?” Blogs, really, used to be called diaries, hidden under the pillows by googoo-eyed twelve-year-old girls. They were usually covered with stickers of rainbows and unicorns (and rainbow-colored unicorns). But now everyone has a diary, but they call them blogs and they’re asking all of us to read them. It’s like pulling off a Band-Aid and saying, “I made it myself!”

Blogs are one of the most disgusting, narcissistic, time-wasting developments of the last hundred years (and I’m including racewalking). Nobody read your diary in 1776, so you never did get that opium shot of having some stranger sixteen states away telling you, “You have the soul of a poet.”

From The Bible of Unspeakable Truths (New York: Grand Central Publishing, 2010). Gutfeld blogs at

Update: Bareheaded in Burleson offers a different take.

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Shifty business

TTAC’s Steven Lang, making a statement calculated to draw Strong Responses:

A fun entry level car with a slushbox hasn’t been made in nearly 20 years.

Every entry level car with a slushbox, from the Cavalier to a Yaris has been an absolute adrenalin depleting disaster. These are commuter scooters. Nothing more. Made to a price point and designed for the open traffic jam. They are appliances without a verve of nerve except when they come with a good five-speed.

Contributing to this unfortunate situation is the fact that a low price point pretty much demands the crummiest automatic available: Toyota is still bolting antediluvian four-speeders into Corollas and such, and while Ford deigns to give you an actual dual-clutch six-speed in the new Focus, almost every review I’ve seen has reviled that transmission: Car and Driver, for instance, complained of “lethargic starts, clunking noises, slow upshifts, and harried downshifts.”

Most TTAC readers came down on the side of the stick shift, though a few guys with bad knees and/or awful commutes spoke up for the slushboxes.

Now I’ve been driving for about 35 years, half stick, half auto. (Nissan quit offering the stick in the I30 after ’99. Guess who has a ’00?) I have noticed this, though: more than a decade after my retreat to the relative boredom of a two-pedal car, I still reach for the stick before coming to a stop. The autonomic nervous system is undoubtedly trying to tell me something.

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Inasmuch as yesterday was Thursday

A dash of show-biz pragmatism:

“I wanted to start building what could be a really great career, but this industry, it’s so unpredictable: you could be the big thing for a month or four months, and then kind of fall off the face of the planet.”

So says Rebecca Black, who first appeared on pop radar, um, four months ago.

In the meantime, although you didn’t ask, it is possible to come up with a tune as infectious and as repetitious as “Friday.” To prove the point, here’s Lara playing “Friday” (with a touch of “My Moment”) and the Nyan Cat song:

Amazing how well they work together. Johann Pachelbel, watch your back.

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How can I leave this behind?

I have to assume that this product wins the Spinal Tap “To 11″ Seal of Approval:

SPANX introduces its cheekiest product yet — the Booty-Booster Short. This style, which gives a whole new meaning to the phrase fanny pack, is best for those who want more junk in their trunk! Now you can achieve the look of a naturally round rump thanks to this highly constructed, booty-enhancing design with optional butt-lets that add a cheek size!

The term that’s new to me is “butt-lets,” which, had I heard it in isolation, would make me think more “supplant” than “supplement”: I’d almost think it was free-standing. (Well, free-sitting, actually.) And you know, you don’t often hear about prosthetic devices designed for people who’ve lost their asses.

(Via Nancy Friedman.)

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Some people can’t take a hint

Screen shot from Yahoo! Answers

On the upside, if he ignores it for long enough, he can go back to riding the bus, where questions of this sort don’t come up quite so often.

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We should get married

No, I don’t mean you and me. (It would never work out.) But that’s the gist of the lyrics to this off-center pop tune by Turkish singer Hadise, who, unlike most Turkish singers, was born in Belgium. In 2003, at seventeen, she tried out for Pop Idool, the Flemish version of [do I really have to tell you?], but was eliminated in the second round. (Stupid Flanders.)

She didn’t actually put out any records in Turkish until 2009, when she released Kahraman, which yielded two singles, one she’d sung for the Eurovision Song Contest, and this tune right here:

“Evlenmeliyiz,” which does in fact mean “we should get married,” made #6 on the official Turkish chart. The video, as you probably noticed, is a single shot in front of a green screen.

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Congratulations are in order

Apparently the news had been embargoed until yesterday, but hey, that was yesterday, so I can tell you that Nathan Gunter, photographer, blogger, PR guy and feature writer, is taking over the Managing Editor’s desk at Oklahoma Today magazine, the official slick of the Sooner State, on the tenth of next month.

And just in time for me to send in my subscription renewal, too. (Maybe I’ll squeeze in that third year after all.)

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So much for my self-worth

It appears that I would need an additional 100 or so Twitter followers just to catch up with a depressed ferret.

Ostensibly, this is how the crepuscular little hob got that way:

A circus in the Siberian city of Chita is missing some of its animal stars. A ferret, an ape and a parrot have found a way out and headed for freedom. Management blames the bad weather, which made the performers gloomy and depressed.

­”We believe that the animals escaped due to depression, since we have had unremitting rains here in Chita,” performance director of the circus Zhanna Lazerson told Interfax news agency.

“We later found the ape in a dog’s cage, where they slept together hugging,” she added.

The parrot, presumably, was pining for the fjords.

I can appreciate the ferret’s unhappiness with the weather — we’ve had unremitting heat since Memorial Day and barely enough rain to rotate the dust — though since he is in show business, there’s always the chance he found out he bore a strange resemblance to Major Frank Burns.

(Via Bayou Renaissance Man.)

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Bonus orangeness

Since we’re all about the orange these days, Lynn points us in the general direction of Hot Orange Pieces for these Hot Summer Days, most of which she doesn’t much care for, not so much for the orangitude but for the shapes in general.

Diane von Furstenberg Terrazzo dressShe did, however, work up a few kind words for the “Terrazzo” dress by Diane von Furstenberg:

I might wear that one if it was a little longer and there was a little less of me, but I’m not a big fan of wrap dresses either.

Of course, DVF does wrap dresses the way Volkswagen does Beetles — after a while, you cease to be surprised by them — but I thought this one was rather spiffy, and just in case we’re going to fuss over its inherent orangeness, be advised that technically it’s “Leopard Falls Coral.”

And I must point out that the site promoting such orangery is Mode Bay Area, as in San Francisco Bay Area, which is having no Hot Summer Days: this week in SF, it’s mostly lows in the middle 50s and highs in the lower 70s. And, of course, fog overnight.

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Meanwhile in small business

Oklahoman screen shotYesterday being a rather hectic day — I’m guessing there’s a reason hardly anybody ever writes songs about Wednesdays — I didn’t actually get around to reading yesterday’s Business section until dinnertime, and I nearly choked on my pork chop when I saw the size of this new joint venture. Hell, I spend at least that much every three or four months on J. C. Potter sausage, often in the presumably highly-profitable prefab-biscuit format. (Potter, as you know, packs the flavor.) Of course, it’s a typo: $15 million, not a measly $15, is going into the Potter/Williams joint venture. Now I don’t think I could eat that much sausage; and if I could, I’m thinking I should probably try to diversify into hot dogs and go professional.

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Roundball over Quidditch

A mostly-astute observation from ESPN’s J. A. Andrade:

[James Harden] said he and his Thunder teammates haven’t discussed playing overseas if the lockout continues. They want to finish what they started. If the Thunder extend a qualifying offer to Daequan Cook it would mean … they’d have everyone who played in the playoffs last season under contract for next year. And they have the rights to their top eight playoff scorers through 2012-13 as well. Even the Harry Potter series couldn’t maintain that level of continuity.

It’s “mostly” because I have to dock Andrade half a point for not noticing that DC14 has in fact been extended a qualifying offer, though there’s room for debate as to whether that means anything during the lockout or in the expected new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Then again, if NBA teams were pulling in J. K. Rowling-level cash, there wouldn’t have been so much as a hint of a lockout this year.

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This would never work in my neighborhood

No Pants Allowed

As it happens, chain-link fence is prohibited under our Urban Conservation District overlay zoning.

(Via Jack Cluth, who sees this as a way to save on laundry expenses.)

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