The Long Goodbye

Yesterday we had to say good-bye to our beagle Minnie. Making the hateful decision to put her to sleep was one of the hardest things we’ve ever had to commit to-how do you knowingly go about making arrangements to end the life of the thing you love most in this world?

First let me take a step back to tell you that we nearly lost her back on February 13th of last year.  In the middle of the night, we rushed her to Tufts after she collapsed and couldn’t breathe. She was diagnosed with Chronic Valvular Disease & Congestive Heart Failure. Her cardiology team couldn’t tell us how long she would live, but we were given the vague expectation that it could be anywhere from one to six months depending on how well we could control her symptoms with heart medications.

Ever since last February, we’ve been living on borrowed time with Minnie. It’s been a long year of increasingly sleepless nights and constant worry. Living with a dog who has CHF means listening to persistent coughing, monitoring breaths per minute, maintaining a low-sodium diet and keeping up with ever-changing heart medications.

It’s been a delicate dance to keep her as happy and healthy as possible this past year. She continued to enjoy her long walks with Spencer and still eagerly ran to the kitchen every time she heard the refrigerator door open or the turn of the electric can opener. She enjoyed Winter one last time rolling in freshly fallen snow and taking long lazy naps in all her favorite spots of our house. She was happy and content despite her failing heart. We helped her have a good quality of life this past year.  We never gave up on her.

But recently she began fainting as a result of her coughing and seeing her wake-up after a fainting spell struggling to breathe and not knowing if she would recover was unimaginably painful and we just couldn’t put her through it anymore.  We loved her too much and knew it was time to say good-bye.

We let her go yesterday – nearly a year to the day when we first discovered her condition – our most loved 11-year old girl.

We were with her till the last beat of her broken heart.


Dear John: A Duran Duran Fan Letter

The above Duran Duran fan letter could have been written by me with one exception – I would have started off my epic fan letter with Dear Simon. 

I have been proud to call myself a Duranie since 1982.  I can’t recall that exact pivotal moment when I first laid eyes on my Fab Five, but I do have a very distinctive memory of being down in the basement watching their videos on MTV.   I remember that my best vantage point was to sit as close to the TV screen as possible whenever a video came on and I simply could not get enough of Simon LeBon. I was hopelessly devoted and smitten to that blond-haired pop-star and it was a love that spawned such things as fan fiction that I would pass out to my circle of friends, about a thousand poster push-pin holes in my bedroom and early damage to my vocal cords from high-pitch squealing like a stuck pig whenever the band premiered a new video on MTV.

What’s a 12-year old girl with raging hormones to do down in the basement all by herself late at night?  Wait. It’s not what you think.  Well, OK, maybe it is.  I would watch the unedited full-length Girls On Film video as many times as possible and and pray that my mom didn’t come walking downstairs to see what my young, formative mind was watching on cable TV: bare-breasted models engaging in all sorts of suggestively sexy activity with Sumo Wrestlers in a fighter’s ring, girl-on-girl action sequences, massages involving copious amounts of squirting oil, a cowgirl riding a horse (who is actually just a hot guy with a horse head strapped to the side of his face), kiddie pools and apparent disco dancing in the center ring.   And while all this is going on, my boys are dancing around on the sidelines wearing head scarfs and make-up.  Talk about confusing.  Are You There, God? It’s me, Kim.  And I don’t know what the hell I’m feeling down there.

I’m ashamed to say that my love for Duran Duran once made me take advantage of a boy named Michael who really liked me.  He invited me over to his house to hang out in his parent’s basement (again with the basement!) and rented a VHS tape of all the early Duran Duran videos.  Talk about teen cat nip.  I knew he had a crush on me and the only reason why we hung out is because he got that video.  I’m not proud of my actions with him, but back then I would have done just about anything to anyone to get my Simon LeBon fix.  (Does that make me a Mean Girl?)

I have snippets of memory visiting my best friend Lisa on The Cape and being totally psyched that I found Duran Duran’s first album on cassette as an import.  It had an extended version of Planet Earth and I played it so much I’m surprised I didn’t wear out the tape. (Still have it to this day!)  Back then I fantasized about what it was going to be like when I got my driver’s license and could drive in my own car while playing Duran Duran cassettes as loud as possible. 

I remember being insanely pissed off at my mom because she wouldn’t let me see the band when they came to the Worcester Centrum on their Seven & The Ragged Tiger tour.  She was afraid the place was going to collapse from all the people stomping their feet and banging on the backs of seats.  I think she heard somebody talking about the building’s structure on AM radio one day and it freaked her out. Sadly, my mom was an anxious hot mess even back then.

Those were my early years of fandom. I’m proud to tell you that I’ve never stopped loving them even through their various side projects, break-ups, reunions and pop-star histrionics.  Duran Duran was and still is the soundtrack to my life.

Below is the actual transcription of the above fan letter in case you had trouble reading it.
Dear John,

I have been waiting 2 long, long years to see you in concert. I think Duran Duran are the best and are the most gorgeous. If you are reading this know that you are the most gorgeous guy in the world, and andy is the cutest guy in the world. You both remind me of adorable Cabbage Patch Kids. You are my favorite Duran man and I love you totally. My best friend also loves you totally. I’m writting this 13 days before the concert, I hope that you’ll save it. Oh forget it, throw it out. Just that you know I exist and that you accually read this is enough. I love you forever and ever. I was the person who was screaming the loudest that I love you. Tell Andy I love him to.

(a faithful fan)

Happy Birthday!!

I didn’t forget. I hope you had the best 25th ever. I listen to Z-100 radio, and tomorrow I will be because today is June 19 and I’ll celebrate it.


DURAN DURAN rule+4ever!!!!!!!

1. Duran Duran are the most gorgeous.
2. But John Taylor is the most gorgeous.
3. Andy Taylor is the cutest.
4. Men who look like Cabbage Patch Dolls are a good thing.
5. Number of times she uses the word love: 7
6. Her best friend loves you, too.
7. I love you.

March Madness

There’s a TON of things happening right now in my world related to my girl crush Justin Timberlake.
First he joined Instagram in early February. His first picture was of a shot of the non-existent traffic on the 101 in LA on his way to perform at The Grammy’s.
On February 27th I nearly lost my mind because I couldn’t pull the trigger on buying super expensive presale tickets to see his tour when it comes to Boston at Fenway Park in August.  At first I got all excited because Ticketmaster returned results that I had scored tickets, but then my brain kicked in and registered the price was $255/ticket and I simply couldn’t justify it.  (Get it? Justify. OK.  We’re cool. You got it.)  I kept refreshing the screen, tossing those PC cookies and hoping the results would be different, but in the end I even passed on the lesser tickets priced at $134.50/ticket because I wasn’t exactly clear where I’d be parking my ass in Fenway during the performance.
On February 28th, the official sale kicked off at 10 am and I tried again. (I was at work and actually delayed a meeting so I could give it another shot) I got 2 tickets for $134.50 in Section 29.  Ticketmaster threw me into that 15 minutes of suspended time of temporarily holding my tickets and I feverishly tried to locate where I’d be sitting in the park. I Google’d a couple sites where people post pictures from their seats so I could see the view and I still couldn’t do it.  I actually got up and asked my co-worker Brian to swing by and validate if my seats were any good.  He was in mid-nod and I was just about to buy the tickets when Michelle triumphantly leaped into my cube to exclaim, “Happy Birthday. I just bought us tickets.”  At least, I think that’s what she said.  It’s still sort of hazy.  I think non-exercise related endorphin kicked into my blood stream because I just remember feeling this moment of sheer joy and happiness.  She ended up scoring tickets in Section 26 and later told me she knew I wasn’t going to buy them because I was so upset over the cost.
Oh, Justin.  You’re such a tease.
Sometimes you just need a friend to put her arm around you and drag your sorry indecisive ass over the fence.  I was so glad she did because now we’re going to see Justin Timberlake and the great Hova. 
Things are progressing nicely in the Land of Crush. Tonight he’s hosting Saturday Night Live for the 5th time and then next Monday through Friday he’s going to be on Jimmy Fallon every single night as the exclusive musical guest.  The best thing about this is I watch Fallon anyways and I was thinking that at least he’ll be visiting the show to promote his CD.  But never in my wildest dreams did I imagine he’d be such an unprecedented guest for five consecutive nights.
I’m on vacation the week of March 17th which is perfect because Justin’s CD titled The 20/20 Experience is being released on March 19th.  I’ll probably be at Target when it opens so I can get the CD with the two exclusive tracks on Tuesday.  Yes, people, this is how I’m spending my vacation.
So with all this excitement going on in the real world, there’s still a ton of busy buzz happening online.  Blogs are exploding with all this information because like me, people are just losing their shit that he’s back to singing.  Only recently I read a blog where this girl was just so incredibly pissed off about his straightened hair.  She insisted he was using a relaxer to tame his trademark N’Sync curls and didn’t have any love for his Rat Pack coiffed hair one bit. I like reading stuff like this because it reminds me that I’m not the only person there that feels so disproportional about Justin Timberlake . These like-minded freaks give me perspective.  
Yesterday I read a really funny post that I had to share with you.  It’s from the blog BuzzFeed and it’s called The 32 Greatest Justin Timberlake Dance Moves of All Time.   They gathered 32 GIF’s of him dancing and then created names for his dance moves to go along with the images.  It’s perfectly hilarious. 
Here are just some of my favorites:
  • The Look I’m In A Puddle Twirl 
  • The Pow Pow Shimmy 
  • The Don’t Look Now but Madonna Is Behind You Twist
  • The Michael Jackson Crotch Thrust
  • And the Full On Penis Quake
  • The Beyonce Body Sway
  • The Full On Shirt Twirl
  • The Timberlake Tornado
  • The Sass Monster Shoulder Twirl
  • The Ultimate Pelvic Plunge
My favorite: The Pow Pow Shimmy

The Timberlake Tornado
Forget the Shamrock Shake coming back for a limited-time only at McDonald’s.  March is shaping up to be the best month ever.
Dedicated fans waiting to get inside 30 Rock

Suit & Tie Lyric Video Review

Now THIS is the way to tease your fans right. 5:27 minutes of pure sexy bliss.

It seems like the new catchy thing to do these days is for an artist to release a lyric video in advance of the official music video for a song. It’s like a movie preview only with the words to the song.  Mostly the lyric videos I’ve watched are like those annoying PowerPoint presentations laden with overly-used animation trickery to keep the audience engaged in a very boring presentation.

Thankfully Justin Timberlake decided not to make a half-assed lyric video for his newly released song Suit & Tie.  Rather my own little Mr. Sexyback put some effort into his officially sanctioned lyric video. It’s so good that it should just be the music video.

I’ve watched it a couple of times now on YouTube and here’s my blow by blow:

It starts out with Justin driving around Los Angeles in a classic car wearing a Fedora. (I think it’s a rule that guys can’t drive a car from the 1960’s without wearing head gear, but it’s OK because this man can wear the hell out of a hat.) Justin strums his fingers on the steering wheel and is probably pissing off everybody driving behind him ’cause it doesn’t look like he’s going more than 20 mph. Then it’s all about a shave, hair cut and getting dressed up in his suit & tie.  He brushes some presumable dirt off his shoulder with one of those valet brushes and I can’t help thinking it’s his sly salute to Jay-Z.

The scene shifts to him sitting at a piano smoking a cigarette and tickling the ivy while occasionally standing up to sing into a microphone.  He’s finger snapping to sultry Timbaland beats while sporting those sexy nerd glasses and all I can focus on is his wedding band. Oh, right.  He’s married now.  Damn.  And just to rub salt in my wounds, there’s a brief interlude of him standing with a woman in a satin dress saying something to him to make him laugh & smile as she possessively adjusts his bow tie. Enough Justin.  I get it.  You’re taken.

This is a film-noir black & white lyric video, but the only splash of color comes from a glass of scotch Justin is holding as he says, “Get out your seat Hov.”  Then Jay-Z is rapping about make-up sex,Tom Ford Tuxedos, Ass Tight denim, Las Vegas and being an excellent son-in-law.  (Granted, that last thing is a guess on my part.)

The night is nearing the end as Justin does sexy bad boy things like smoke cigars, drink martinis and gamble. Phew!  He’s getting tired because he starts to lean on stuff like his microphone and then his car. He even does this cute little ankle dance before he gets into the car and starts driving off into the night.

But there’s just one more brilliant thing he does before his official lyric video for Suit & Tie closes.

He’s standing there watching you read what he’s written on a piece of glass with a black Sharpie: The 20/20 Experience Coming

And then WHAM!  He smashes through the words with a freaking hammer and starts walking away as the shards of glass shatter and begin falling down.

The End.

Does anyone have a cigarette?