This weekend I’m in another Food: Fact or Fiction on Cooking Channel. Here is a clip where I tackle the issue of why we love cheese. ( why would we not?) In this clip host Michael Mckean actually says my name! Been a fan for years.. if only we had been in the same room..and got to be funny together. That would be an 11.
Ever wondered where a Cobb Salad came from? Well, check me out of Cooking Channel’s Food: Fact or Fiction and find out. Airs this weekend. (Jan 14th 7pm PST)
They chyron me as “Home Cook”. Hmm, host of the previously aired Daphne Dishes too long? I’ve taped a few of these and I enjoy doing them. The only bummer is they are all shot in an un airconditioned loft in Downtown LA. We shot most of them in the warm months. Because it is a noisy area we have to shut the hip industrial windows when we we tape and I probably had sweaty pits here.
But I digress…
Easy dinner in a dash.
Happy New Year Humans!!
New Year’s can sometimes feel almost as compulsory as Valentines day — a crime against humanity– but this year was ok. An impromptu party at my sister-in-law’s pretty condo with her exuberant husband, one of my sisters and awesome husband (Kevin Tent who edited Downsizing and directed the hilarious Crash Pad) a couple good girlfriends, one with a date ( btw they did not follow the dictum that couples never sit next to each other. We gave them a hard time but they said because they were not married it was ok. I judged in silence). Our favorite divorced bachelor (don’t even ask for his contact, his queue is longer than Space Mountain). My nephew Charlie– 20, handsome, smart– showed up with 10 of his closest friends for a cameo. Nice group. I yelled at one kid for being on his phone before greeting us. I was so proud I knew some of their names!
I did counsel one young man who gushed that he would marry his present girlfriend.
“No, you won’t” I said. She gave me a little look that said, “Yeah, tell him.”
“Maybe you can break up and get back together, but you are too young. You don’t know yourself enough. Just enjoy the moment.”
In ten minutes I tried to impart much of what I have learned about being in relationships.
“Everyone is responsible for their own orgasms. Woman cannot just lie there and wait for fairy dust. They need to learn about themselves, know what they want and be vocal. Men do not know what is in our minds or how our bodies work… believe me!” I think this is when my nephew’s mother (aka my sister) almost spilled her dry martini as she wedged herself between me and the besotted youth. What’s the matter? They are 20.
I digress. We had a caterer because after the last 6 weeks I’d cooked more times than Mario Batali has shoved his junk on women in his restaurants. ( was that my outside voice?)
So, here is a regular night dinner. No fireworks or sex ed, or unwelcome attention Just mid week, kids avoiding homework and I’m making dinner. I want to go to the grocery store like I want to be close to Mario Batali (oh, the humanity) so I’m a big fan of grabbing what’s on hand and making it happen. With food, not fatty’s junk.
I hope you enjoy the little vid.
I felt a tad flattened for a while after “Daphne Dishes” wasn’t picked up. Throw in some personal stuff and feeling father time was sitting on my face– and not in a good way– I got discouraged. Lost my creative way. Fell into “what’s the point?” and my health insurance costs a fortune. I gotta get a job at Hertz. Plus, the 2016 election and all that followed. America, how did we get out of bed?
But, after my Siddhartha like journey ( i.e. networking, talking to casting directors, agent, etc and most importantly my mother) I realized the parade may have kept moving, but I can jump on a float. The hard part is I have to build my own float.
When I thought about what means the most to me it’s 1) my kids 2) comedy 3) political issues 4) food ( 2-3-4 shift positions often). To that end in addition to this being coolmom.com it is also coolfoodmom.com and coolactivistmom.com. Because as my kids get older they still take a shit ton of my time, however I can’t exploit them as easily. They are on to me. Plus, I remembered my breasts aren’t just milk bags and I do have nice curvy hips and oh, yeah, there is a woman there.
I do really miss Daphne Dish’s, so I will do my best with my limited resources and lack of production value and reboot some cooking, comedy, sass. Here is my first attempt.
I hear about a documentary and I think “damn, that sounds so interesting! I’d love to see that.” But, I almost never do. I barely get to the movies unless I’m escorting my kids to an animated film…then I prefer to go to a theater that has wine. It relaxes me when I see animals talking.
But, when I was invited to watch a documentary about teens and anxiety I did watch it. Not on a “screener” ( which I NEVER get unlike everyone else I know in Los Angeles), not streaming, but got in my car and drove. Drove to Westwood no less. I hate driving to Westwood. Not as much as I hate driving to Glendale, but much more than driving Downtown.
Why did I go? I now have a tween. I can see that middle school seems more challenging than elementary school. Not academically, but socially, the vibe, the lack of play. Schools seem to think that at 12 no one wants unstructured outdoor time. Join a sports team! (more anxiety.) My husband came with me. He has already had 3 other children go through teen years and he seemed to have less insight into the process than I have.
The movie is called “Angst“. It’s a lot of people talking about their anxiety, so I did feel a bit anxious watching it, but the good news ( and for short attention span Brogdon this is very good) it clocks in just under an hour. There are different teens describing what they went through, some of what made them better. Various therapist talking about treating teens with anxiety. Now, there were moments watching were I thought, “Gee shut up you nice looking, largely white kids who live in America and are scared to go to school. You are not in Cambodia scared your back yard has unexploded land mines.” But, then I am not worried about land mines either and my children’s worries are probably more like the kids in this film. Urban, metro, educated families. Makes sense they would get anxious.. they have a mom who stresses about driving to Westwood ( also cause it’s all crap chain restaurants, except Falafel King, thank God that is still there).
Two things really jumped out at me as take aways for parents: 1) if your kid has chronic tummy aches it is probably anxiety. Which doesn’t mean “tough it out”, but address the underlying issue. 2) one therapist said it would help young people to process feelings if their parents did openly as well. Example a parent might share with their youngin: “I had a disagreement with my friend at work. I didn’t know why she was mad at me and I ignored it, but it started to bother me, so I asked her to get a coffee with me and we worked it out.” Remember being a teen in your darkened bedroom with headphones on listening to Pete Townsend’s solo works and thinking ” I am the ONLY ONE in the world who feels like I do” ( on hi low carpeting as I recall).
When Mark told some friend’s of ours about it the next day he summed it up well, “It scared the shit out of me.”
I don’t want to be a spoiler, but near the end of the film a FAMOUS person surprises one of the kids and speaks frankly about their struggles with anxiety and depression (which kinda sorta go together a lot). It’s a real high point and I’m sure the producers high fived when they booked THIS PERSON. “woo- hoo, we have our ending”
So, check out the film. The film makers have a comprehensive website with resources. Also, if you want the film to be shown at your school or youth organization they will set that up for free. They will help facilitate talking points, etc.
So, long story short: As my kids got older, as youtube dominated the net, as I lost my production partners (aka…people who paid for cameras, editing) I’ve kind let this thing die.. a bit. It’s also WAY harder to making any nickels compared to the old days (2008). Now everyone and their dog has vlogs.
Well, my old partners have morphed into Kin Community and they have kindly handed me all my vids, the rights to this site, etc. (here are the keys, start tagging! So, I would like to re-engage with coolmom.com. However, I still have who are at an age where vlogging about them is more problematic than when they were still in diapers ( Vivien is 11, Rex 8) They know how to say things like “Don’t post that picture mommy”. I do not have financial partners so my production value will look like home made porno… with clothes on.
HERE ARE ALL THE 500 PLUS VIDEOS I DID.. GOOD, BAD, INBETWEEN.
Also, as my kids become more independent so did I. I do not identify myself as a mom as much. I still like “you are a great mom” as my fave compliment, but I also have discovered my body again… sex… exercise… reading…. washing my car. Things that were not possible just a few years ago.
Between my own years of community work ( and some guy named Trump, heard of him?) I’m engaged politically.
I had a Food Network show ( you might have heard about it). Helped launch my husband’s latest venture Prawn.
So, this site will be less cute kiddo vids and I think more Cool food mom, Cool activist mom, Cool mom whose breasts still look damn good after nursing two babies for two years each… just a few ideas. I also want to spruce up some of the best ones from the old days.
Have some more? Let me know… Look for me here.. breasts and all! Let’s see where this goes.
While trying to finally clean up my computer I stumbled upon photos from a mom blogger event from 7 years ago. I use to go things like this a lot. People with baby products would demonstrate or give stuff away and bloggers mention it on their site if they like it.
At this juncture I was not working outside the home that much, so I strapped on Rex and went to EVERYTHING. Here I was being taught how to massage my little guy.
Long strokes away from the heart I think?
Here I’m going for the little toes, which 7 years later I still adore. Even at the time I wasn’t sure if a baby massage technique was so important, but rather that a parent or caregiver strokes, hugs, caresses them. Studies show an untouched baby is wire monkey.. I know I am.
I look back on this period 1) thinking how cute Rex was and how nice it was to easily take him anywhere. But, 2) remember who tired I always was. Well, gee I’m not sure. Am I tired here or really trying to learn this thing? Oh, maybe I’m doing a “happy and you know it clap your hands?” Oh, warming up the oil? I’m so geared towards food I think those little plates with oil are in need of some fresh bread to dip into.
The other important part of a ritual like this is that it made ME feel better.. not nessarily doing the perfect massage for Rex ( by the way, never got a tip) but slowing down and spending a few minutes touching your kid feels so good. Now, it’s rubbing their back at bed time, or when they let me hold their hands walking.
Oh, my look at my pink blackberry! Gosh, I miss those… I made less typos. So, I’m out of the mommy blogging, swag party business… I don’t have time and I don’t have a cute little co star to take around with me. More and more when people would pitch me products I’d say, “you know there are SO many sites that are a better fit.” I did like experiences, like this, though. I was a little perplexed by why I’m wearing those white sunglasses.. but I think they were given to me.
Gang, This is the longest I’ve gone since a post. It’s tough when you are in a mid life crisis, raising kids, family obligations, working, looking for more work, mourning your Food Network show, exercising, doing community work and resisting the worst President I’ve ever known.
It remind me of one of the my favorite signs from the women’s march. “ugh, Where Do I Start?”
I’m going to try and post something funny soon. Right now I’ve been binge watching old videos from when my kids were super tiny. They are now 8 and 11 and I’m already nostalgic for their younger selves. So, I’ll leave you with one that has been on a loop here lately. It’s something I made for Mark’s professional FB page years ago. It’s so cute!!
Oh, and March 22nd is my birthday. Thanks for being here!
Being a Pro Hillary, Non Trump person I have felt kind of like the Grinch. We take the trappings of Christmas away and Christmas comes anyway.
It comes without mandate!
It comes without civility
It comes without logic, equality and voting rights!
It comes with Putin, voter suppression, the FBI meddling and Newt!
But, it comes nonethless.
My kids were making fun of Donald Trump before I barely noticed him as a viable candidate. The kids got it first. He was a big presence. They don’t like him and I say, you guys I’ve lived a lot longer than you all and I’m telling you, this is NOT the kind of person we have as a president. People usually at least try to be gentleman and mend fences. Not here.
So, as I prepare to March Saturday ( I hope to get some protesting in Friday too, but I have to work, so you know work/life/protest balance) I keep thinking, what is on my sign?
There is the I can’t accept you dude genre: “Repeal and Replace Donald Trump” Which is kind a cool because it sticks up for ACA too. Or “I’m not with him”. But, since he is in, I’m not sure that strikes the right tone.
There are the single issue signs. Several protest Friday in LA focus on Immigration rights and protecting the Dreamers. So many good causes to champion in the age of Trump. Protecting the climate ( 2016 was THE hottest year on record Don), Health care, funding for education, housing, safeguarding financial system, etc, etc. As long as no on is threatening harm to a human I’m down with whatever sign.
As a woman I certainly do NOT feel represented and was looking forward to seeing someone who looked like me as POTUS. Who had to get her clothes ready for work and give her child attention while she had cramps and nag her husband to help her unload the dishwasher. Who had been a solid professional, but had men look at each other in a meeting while was ignored. Who was shushed so a man could be heard. I’m very sad at the large amount of white woman who did not vote for Hillary. “Something about her I don’t like”. Was John Kerry or Al Gore the kings of personality? Did they always ring authentic? No, but I supported them because their policies more closely aligned with me. Sadly a confluence of internalized misogyny and lure of celebratory and lack of critical thinking won the day. So, that woman will not take the oath.
So, I keep thinking.. when the whoos down in whoo ville circle up, what do I want them to see on my sign? ( not that many will see it, but go with me)
Some say, don’t go too negative. Trump will just dismiss critics. Maybe true, but I also need to do this for my own self expression. So, I’m going to have a two sided signs. One is a suggestion for how I think our future POTUS should act and one is a cause that I would like us to unify around.
One side was a friend of friends idea: “We need a leader, not a tweeter”. His assault on our psyche with that nonsense needs to stop. Most of us plebs tweet and blog because we have no platform otherwise. This guy is the most famous dude in the world. Why is acting like a teenager? What no snap chat?
The other is to support the first thing I ever marched for as a kid: ERA. The Equal Rights Amendment. It never passed. That’s right. It is NOT in our constitution that women are equal. So, I think I’ll throw on my “Don’t blame me, I voted for her” T-shirt and hold up my sign. There is a great article HERE that holds out hope that sometimes the leader you think is your worst enemy can surprise you.
The best thing I can say about him now is I hope he surprises me. I hope you acts more inclusive, rational. But, I doubt it.