The Lashes May Be Mink, But the Faux Fur Drama Was Flying on Vanderpump Rules

There was some sort of really big thing going down here in Washington D.C. last night. Actually, it was a national event, full of backstabbing and upsets. It included a cast of familiar, soul-less characters who act like friends one minute, only to turn around and do something shady the next. There was even a total flip flopper at the center of all the drama who makes John Kerry look like a stubborn stalwart.

And it had me glued to my television last night.

You can’t tell because my eyelashes are mink (oh, Sheena), but I am seriously excited that Vanderpump Rules season three (or should that be SUR-son three) is back.

Jax works out on Vanderpump Rules
The episode opened with Jax working out shirtless. Of course.

Wait. You didn’t think I was talking about the elections, did you? Please.

Yes, our long national nightmare of skank-less television is now over. The SUR kids are back with their hookups, social media stalking, and short-swirly-slightly-Ed-Hardy-esque t-shirt dress uniforms.

And even more exciting is the fact that Stassi is back!

Mysteriously so. Considering that Stassi left behind SUR and all her cheating friends and exes for a new life and love in New York. Yet, here we are a mere six months later and she’s back in LA, scurrying around to get the latest dirt on her former colleagues. Allegedly, her boyfriend’s Sirius Radio show moved to California. I say allegedly because 1) we never saw this new boyfriend on the first episode; 2) it’s Sirius Radio, which is headquartered in New York, so not clear on why they would want him to be LA-based, and 3) Stassi is staying with friends in LA, NOT her new boyfriend.

What Stassi did bring to last night’s episode (besides the drama, judgment and sarcasm), was a collection of ridiculous statement necklaces. Let’s have a bit of a review.

Stassi of Vanderpump Rules loves a statement necklace.
I didn’t meant to cut off Stassi’s head while making my collage. But I did not do anything to stop it either.

I guess without the SUR uniform, she feels like she really needs to bling it up. I really feel like maybe she’s accessorizing in preparation for a future position here in Washington D.C. Stassi in 2016?

Statement necklaces in Washington DC
That would be Michelle Obama and Ann Romney rocking the statement necklaces.

Reality TV Time: Euros of Hollywood

During the last year that this blog has been dormant (almost one year to the day!), I’ve been on some fabulous trips that I have just been dying to talk/write about. I can’t tell you, gentle reader, how many times I’ve been witness to something and thought: Man, this would be great for the blog.

For example, we went to South Africa in March (with a super sketchy layover in Nigeria that I cannot wait to tell y’all about), spent a long weekend in Copenhagen (where I discovered my love for open-faced sandwiches – genius. Pure genius), revisited Costa Rica, and most recently, we went to Bali, where we worked extra hard to avoid all references to “Eat, Pray, Love” (spoiler alert: we failed).

In fact, I was working on an oh-so-clever Bali post when I saw the most amazing thing ever: Euros of Hollywood.

Meet the Euros: Bleona, where are your pants?
Meet the Euros: Bleona, where are your pants?

“Euros” (which I’ll call them for short) are on a new reality show on that most amazing of networks, Bravo. I swear, that Andy Cohen is a national treasure and no one can convince me otherwise. He should get a Nobel Prize just for his general programming greatness.

“Euros” is like that other great Bravo delicacy, “Ladies of London” but in reverse. “LoL” followed the lives of a mixed group of women comprised of Americans and Brits, so it had just a touch of that “fish-out-of-water” storyline that folks find amusing but then it also had the added fabulousness of the reserved Brits reacting to the American “fish.”

But “Euros” is all in on the fish-out-of-water storyline. And unlike the Americans on “Ladies of London,” these Euros haven’t even the slightest interest in fitting into their new pond. In fact, they seem quite determined to make America conform to their Euro-standards.

We start the show by meeting Bleona, an Albanian pop superstar with a name that sounds like an over-the-counter diuretic. Looks wise, she resembles Angelina Jolie. But then she opens her mouth and it’s more like Nene Leakes. She’s brash, loud, diva-esque, rude, opinionated, and sees slights where none exist. I, of course, love her, and want to sit and chat over a plate of sheqerpare cookies, and be her very best friend in the whole wide world. She’s gorgeous and she’s crazy and I’m pretty sure we’ll be seeing her in Playboy very, very soon.

Bleona being choked by net neck brace.
Bleona at 2012 Billboard Music Awards. Also: WHAT IS THAT AROUND HER NECK? I think she’s being attached by a tulle caterpillar.

Unfortunately, there is trouble brewing in Euroland because Bleona isn’t the only chantreuse in the cast. A little later on, we meet Fawni, a boobilicious blonde Austrian who has had a number one single in Japan, which, as we all well know, is practically a gateway to American pop chart greatness. Fawni, however, has informed us that she’s in America to be a great painter, and Bravo kindly shows us a few of her paintings. They’re…..ok, I guess. OK fine, they’re not horrible….but since I’m firmly on Team Bleona, maybe I’m a bit biased. I will say that they’re definitely much darker than you might expect from an Austrian Barbie doll. Although, there is the ubiquitous Marilyn Monroe tribute piece.

Aaaandd, I love that Fawni’s Bravo page says “Sorry, nothing here yet.” Indeed.

Fawni with one of her paintings. Also: WHERE IS HER ARM??
Fawni with one of her paintings. Also: WHERE IS HER ARM??

We also meet Sascha, a German entrepreneur/DJ/music producer who owns what appears to be a very successful clothing store in LA (where I presume all the Euros get their too-tight, deep v-neck t-shirts, button up shirts that start around the navel, elaborately embroidered skin-tight jeans, and unisex scarves). And yet, Sascha’s wife and two children are still in Germany and he only sees them every couple of months. Now, listen, I know that the United States has a somewhat difficult immigration system. Believe me, I KNOW. Eight years of writing for the nation’s largest lobbying organization in Washington D.C. gave me a lot of familiarity with the difficult politics of this issue. But I find it hard to believe that with all his money and having himself established as a business man in LA, Sascha can’t find a way to bring his family over. Maybe he could hire a lawyer or something to help get the wheels in motion? I hope we hear more about this issue during the season. If for no other reason than the fact that I always like to cram pop cultural references into the otherwise-dull policy debates when I can.

Speaking of unisex scarves, I absolutely cannot finish this post without introducing you to Massimo, a holder of several “slashes” – model/actor/choreographer from Italy. Massimo’s biggest credit so far appears to be in a movie titled “We Have a Pope,” which is a horrible title but an interesting premise: “A story centered on the relationship between the newly elected pope and his therapist.” Wonder if that’s On Demand somewhere. Somehow, I doubt it.

If, by some miracle you are able to resist watching all these other over-the-top wannabes trying to get a foothold in one of the most difficult industry towns in the world, you have to at the very least watch Massimo attempt an American accent. It’s pretty bad. But I have a feeling I’m going to be cheering for his success before the end of the season.

Not in the field of choreography, however. He’s really, really awful. He’s like a cross between a Muppet and someone who is dizzy from thrashing about in the final stages of a debilitating illness.

Massimo in the throws of acting. Is that a popped collar underneath a deep v-neck t-shirt? Get ready America.
Massimo in the throws of acting. Is that a popped collar underneath a deep v-neck t-shirt? Get ready America.

Paternity Court, It’s Time to Get Tested!*

Ladies with bad taste in men, rejoice.

A new show is heading to a TV screen near you, determined to uncover the truth.

My friend Caroline made me aware of this show, which is, as the fine New York Daily News reports:

“Paternity Court” is a new syndicated show on which people take DNA tests and learn from a “judge” if they are related.

Think of it as a cross between “Judge Judy” and the “Maury.”

P court

I used to love those Maury episodes back in college. So suspenseful.

The show will be “officiated” by Lauren Lake. Here’s the first line of her Wikipedia bio:

Lauren Laniece Lake is an American family lawyer, author, interior designer, real estate developer, background singer, legal/relationship/life consultant, guest host, and talk show presenter.


Holy over-achiever, that’s a lot of jobs. No doubt about it: Miss Lake has got some hustle. Respekt.

But I can’t help but notice that “judge” is not listed among the many jobs. As the NY Daily News notes:

Lake is not a real judge and by law her decisions are considered nonbinding mediation.

But she offers good advice.

“Once we get that DNA evidence, then it’s my job as a judge to talk about how that scientific evidence will relate to the law,” Lake said.

That’s odd. I also don’t see scientist listed among her many professions. But I think, based on the very thorough “Paternity Court” Wikipedia page, that what Miss Lake will bring to the proceedings will be far more useful than background in biology (emphasis mine).

In distinct contrast to Judge Judy, Lake maintains little order over her courtroom in handling cases on Paternity Court. Rather, she runs a much more unruly courtroom: Lake allows noisy bickering, interruptions, name-calling, outbursts, dramatics, and misbehavior from the litigants and their witnesses. Even audience members are allowed to make a ruckus and regularly interrupt the judge with boisterous hand-clapping and vocal utterances. Most of the cases are filled with the litigants spewing scurrility and vitriol at each other in unison. In the midst of all the chaos, Lake observes quietly with added dramatic facial expressions. At the end of the cases, Lake offers the DNA test results while dramatic music sounds. Following this, Lake closes with advice in the form of a speech to help the couples move forward.

“Spewing scurrility.” Awesome phrase. Henceforth, all scurrility shall be spewed and only spewed. Those wordsmiths over at Wikipedia were on fire when they wrote this one up.

Dramatic facial expressions? Wait a minute. This gig sounds perfect for me. I have absolutely no poker face whatsoever.


I’m also pretty free with the (unsolicited) advice. And very judgmental. For example, I think people who go on court room TV shows to find out if they’re related are a bit pathetic.

Actually, me and Miss Lake have a lot of things in common. She “calls it the way she sees it.” I tell it like it is. She likes red lipstick. I like red lipstick. She likes to expose deadbeat dads. I had a deadbeat dad.

By Steve Kabelowsky

And we were both weird kids:

“I was always a quirky kid,” said Lake…. “I’d ride my Big Wheel wearing Jackie O sunglasses, plaid pants, a polka dot shirt, a big hat – thank God my parents were OK with it. They didn’t put me in a box, so I was always designing something – clothing, my room, all kinds of things.”

Now that “Breaking Bad” has ended, I figure I have an open slot in my TV viewing schedule for scurrility and vitriol accompanied by dramatic faces and even more dramatic music sounds. After all, that was kind of “Breaking Bad’s” bread and butter, no?

*Paternity Court, it’s time to get tested! is an actual tag line for the show, along with the also awesome: “Paternity Court, where science meets law,” and “Paternity Court; she’s the judge; DNA is the jury!”

Reality TV Time: To the (Myrtle) Manor Born

I grew up in trailer parks. Made friends at fine “semi-permanent establishments” in Arkansas, ran wild in “land lease communities” in Missouri, gotten in fist fights in “mobile communities” all over Texas.

But none of those temporal estates were as nice as the five-star Myrtle Manor on TLC’s seminal ode to the cheapest form of the American Dream (by which I mean, home ownership), “Welcome to Myrtle Manor.”


This Myrtle Manor place has an onsite hair salon (the hilariously named Tangulls – get it? Gulls?) and an above ground swimming pool. Most of the places we lived in had amenities along the lines of a shared clothes line and a kiddie pool with a mysterious scum floating on top. Myrtle Manor has a security guard (granted, he’s not very effective. OK, he’s weird). At the trailer parks we shacked up in, the only security were the packs of gnarly matted dogs of dubious ownership origins running up and down the dusty roads.


Verisimilitude aside, I do thoroughly enjoy the show. In fact, many of the characters seem quite familiar, and not just from my dysfunctional childhood.

No, Myrtle Manor actually reminds me of another grandly named television show locale: Downton Abbey.

Now, I’ve only seen one season of Downton Abbey – I think it was season two. I was on a plane coming back from Spain and my personal travel companion XFE got upgraded, while my lowly, non-platinum status self, did not. So, I watched an entire season of Downton Abbey, by myself, in coach, lubricated with many of those tiny bottles of wine, purchased on XFE’s credit card. Actually not a bad way to spend a transatlantic flight.

I’d heard a lot about the show, obviously and my overall thought was, “eh, it’s ok, if a bit overly dramatic.” This is all just to say, I’m not an expert on the show or anything, and I know that a lot of people feel very passionately about it.

I also know that many, many people were quite disappointed by some of the plot twists incorporated in this last season. In fact, some of them are so upset, that perhaps they’re looking for a Downton replacement.

To which I humbly offer up Myrtle Manor, which also does a pretty good job with overly dramatic plots and soap opera story lines.

mm map

Robert, Earl of Grantham is the lord of Downton Abbey. He spends much of the series fretting over his need for a male heir to carry on the family name and save the estate from financial ruin. When last I watched, it appeared that his eldest daughter, Lady Mary Crowley would be his only viable heir.

Similarly, the stern patriarch of Myrtle Manor is Cecil Patrick. His father built the place and he is ready to pass it down to his own heir, Becky Robertson. Alas, Becky must constantly prove herself worthy of Myrtle Manor stewardship.

mess with trailer park

Both shows have good looking boys who are nothing but trouble and seem to operate on the fringes of polite society. In Downton Abbey, you have Tom Branson, a handsome yet outspoken Irish revolutionary former chauffeur who runs off with the Earl’s youngest daughter. On Myrtle Manor, you have Jared, a charming, ne’er-do-well living in the trailer park rent free.  All the women, including landlord Becky, have a soft spot for him and he skates by. Interestingly, both Tom Branson and Jared are into hats – Tom, obviously, wears a chauffeur’s cap, while Jared is the proud owner of a beat up boat captain hat.

And, according to this picture, a super ridiculous patriotic hat.
And, according to this picture, a super ridiculous patriotic hat.

There are a bevy of young beauties on each show: The Crawley girls lead complicated lives, yearning for love and respect in post-World War I England. When I first encountered the show, Mary, the eldest daughter was trying to save her reputation after a scandal involving a tryst that ended in the death of some young Turkish ambassador, or something.  Meanwhile, the youngest daughter, Sybil had her own romantic complications (with the chauffeur) and was trying to find professional fulfillment by training to become a nurse.

From what I can ascertain, Lady Mary sexed this diplomat to death.
From what I can ascertain, Lady Mary sexed this diplomat to death.

Myrtle Beach has the Darlin’ Dog girls, an entrepreneurial bunch who run a portable hot dog stand. They include Lindsay, Chelsey, Amanda and Jessica.  Like the women on Downton Abbey, they too are trying to navigate in a male-dominated world, and make time for partying.

weiner girls

And, of course, you need an old, wisecracking lady for some comic relief. Downton Abbey has Lord Grantham’s mother, Lady Violet. She’s a real hoot, meddling in everybody’s business, and she is routinely scandalized by all the goings on with those young people. Myrtle Manor has Miss Peggy Beaulieu, a spitfire who has lived in the trailer park for 30 years.


Both shows, of course, have complicated love stories along the lines of boy-loves-girl, girl-likes-other-boy, boy-pees-in-girls-bed, girl-moves-out (that plot might just be exclusive to Myrtle Manor). There are weddings and other celebratory occasions, including a Miss Myrtle Manor beauty contest (which, by all rights, Miss Peggy should have won, in my opinion).

So, put aside your fancy china cup of Earl Grey, fix yourself a tall Tupperware tumbler of sweet iced tea and settle in for an episode of Welcome to Myrtle Manor.  TLC isn’t really all that different from PBS after all.

welcome to

Lies I Ain’t Believing: Ray J’s “I Hit It First”

The cruel winter mistress has loosened her death grip on the DC region and allowed us all to thaw out for a minute.

Rather than go outside this evening for a run, or go and get a much-needed pedicure, I’m sitting inside the house typing up this blog post.

OK let’s be real: I’ll take any excuse to get out of a run.

But I do need pedicure. Right now, I have a sorta ghetto ombre situation going on where tiny chips of Cajun Shrimp cling diligently to a few larger toenails.

Petunia photobomb. Of course.
Petunia photobomb. Of course.

I did plan to run tonight. In fact, I downloaded this really catchy new song by this great new singer.

The song is about meeting a lovely young lady, falling in love and enjoying some intimate times. Alas, the love soon goes bad and unfortunately, the erstwhile lovers split up. They both move on to other lives and loves, but our young hero is not quite reconciled to the fact that they are no longer together. And so, in true troubadour fashion, he has written a song, letting other potential suitors know of his undying love for our fair maiden.

It’s called, “I Hit It First.”

Let me share some of the lyrics with you:

Candles lit with that wine, money still on my mind
And I gave her that really bomb sex
No matter where she goes or who she knows
She still belongs in my bed

Oh my! Candles and wine? How romantic! Tell me more about this storied romance, young Ray J.

I had her head going north and her ass going south
But now baby chose to go West…..

Well, she seems quite geographically astute, I’ll give her that.

She might move on to rappers and ballplayers
But we all know I hit it first
I hop in the club and boppers show love, and I don’t even put in work
I hit it, I hit it, I hit it, I hit it, I hit it, I hit it first
I hit it, I hit it, I hit it, I hit it, I hit it, I hit it first

So……let me get this straight, because I’m unclear: Are you saying that you knew this young lady back in the day? I mean, before the rappers and the ballplayers? It’s hard to tell because you keep repeating that you hit it, you hit it, you hit it first.

Also:  Ray J., your song seems rife with yearning. Dare I say, it seems to me like mayhap, you still pine for this lady, am I correct in my summation?

And if you were to come back to me
Girl I know just how you’d do me
And if you were to come back to me
Girl I know just why you’d choose me
And if you were to come back to me
Girl, I’ll get it wet – jacuzzi
And if you were to come back to me girl
We’ll make another movie

Yep. I think he wants Kim Kardashian back. Although, to be fair, he says quite vehemently that this song is NOT about Kim. No, more than likely it’s about another girl he dated and made a sex video with and who now dates sports figures and rappers. Not Kim. At. All.

I’m sorry, I can’t lie: That’s pretty amazing.

Listen, Ray J. Let me give you some advice. You need to move on. Believe me. She’s not coming back. She’s pregnant. With another man’s baby. While she’s still married to an entirely different guy. She’s kinda a mess.

I know how hard it is to get over someone. Well, I mean, I don’t know what it’s like from your perspective — I’m more of the heartbreaker myself. Yep, there is a very long string of devastated men left ruined in the Poe Path of Love.  Men of means and stature — successful men who have never faced a cyclone of love such as myself. There are literally single digit numbers of men who have been completely undone by my beauty AND my booty. Including strangers on the metro. (I mean, did you see my toes in the picture above? Who wouldn’t want to get with that?)

So I know the pain that  the love and loss of a fine woman can inflict on a man. But seriously, she’s done with you. Done. You need to go out and meet some other ladies. I hear this Gone With the Wind Fabulous lady is available. AND she’s got this amazing fan that I’m totally obsessed with.

So, go. Go hit that. Go make a Stallion Booty video with Ms. Moore. I look forward to hearing more about your future adventures in love.

I Want All My Babies’ Mamas

I am hopping mad, y’all. Madder than a cat on bath day. Our civil liberties as citizens of this fine nation are under attack. Our constitutional rights are being trod upon. And no, I’m not talking about efforts to rein in assault rifles.

I’m talking about the premature cancellation of this fine bit of television viewing.

The show is called All My Babies’ Mamas and it is (was?) a reality show being developed by Oxygen. It featured the complicated, day-to-day life of an Atlanta rapper known as Shawty Lo, who has fathered 11 children by 10 different women.


Oxygen released the trailer a few weeks ago and all hell broke loose. Controversy erupted. Petitions for its demise were organized. Oxygen pulled the trailer, saying the show was still in development.

You can see the video for the trailer here, along with a young lady who introduces it and offers her own opinion on it. Hilariously enough, there’s an advertisement for a What to Expect When You’re Expecting Workout Video at the beginning of it.

Listen, I get what everybody is mad about. I do. However, I think we are vastly overreacting here.


One of the major objections is that it glorifies a certain, less-desirable lifestyle. I find this objection specious on several levels.

First of all, everyone knows reality television is not really reality. Real reality is very, very boring. Watching me work, clean house, and eat dinner is only sometimes mildly amusing to myself, my cat and XFE. For the most part, it’s incredibly dull. So any “reality” show that has any entertainment value is going to feature some crazy premise. That doesn’t mean that one should model one’s life after a reality show and start having babies with multiple women. Nor should one take a dump truck and make a pool out of it, kids of Buckwild. Nor should anyone talk about their incontinence issues on cable television, Kardashians. Nor should one buy a winery without doing some research, people of Duck Dynasty. These are all things I’m not going to emulate, regardless of whether I saw someone do it on television.


Second, 11 children with 10 women is Shawty Lo’s reality. And a lot of other people’s, by the way. My father had five daughters with three women, so he was pretty much making inroads into ATL rapper territory way before the term “babies’ mamas” was coined. The Kardashians have like, 30 children between the two of them. And what about them Sister Wives folks? Seems like they’ve got a passel of young ‘uns, and only one father figure on the scene.  Maybe we should seize this opportunity to talk about preventative measures here.


Third, Shawty Lo appears to be taking care of all these children and women (according to this very interesting MTV interview about the controversy), and that’s actually something to be applauded. There are a lot of people having kids and then bouncing, so the fact that he’s supporting them is great. And, Shawty and his family have just as much of a right to earn a reality buck as any of the other yahoos on reality TV, including the kids of Jersey Shore, Honey Boo Boo’s family, and a slew of others.

Fourth, some have suggested that the show is playing on racial stereotypes. To which, I would point out, so does Honey Boo Boo, Buckwild, Jersey Shore, Basketball Wives, Mafia Wives, and even, Doomsday Preppers. You almost never see anything other than crazy white people on Doomsday Preppers. There. I said it. And it’s true. I’m white trash straight from the trailer parks of West Texas and I do not take any offense to the way my people are portrayed on these shows. I wish I were half as ingenious as those kids on Buckwild (they can find fun anywhere), or had half the cojones as those crazy jackholes on Gold Rush (again, all crazy white dudes), or felt as passionate about a cause as those crazy white hippie kids on Whale Wars.


So Oxygen, here my plea: Let us have our All My Babies’ Mamas. Let us learn why Angela is known as the “Fighter Baby Mama.” How does she get along with Amanda, the “Jealous Baby Mama?” What is it exactly that makes Serena the “Shady Baby Mama?”  How does First Lady E’Creia manage the finances? What can Tamara, the “No-Drama Baby Mama” teach us all about civility? Why shouldn’t Sujuan, the “Wanna be Bougie Baby Mama” strive to be bourgeois?

All these questions must and should be cleared up. 

ThePoeLog 2012 Christmas Gift Guide (You’re Welcome)

Christmas is coming, or so the Robertson’s on Duck Dynasty have told me (we just watched the Christmas special this past weekend). When it comes to Christmas, I personally believe everybody over 25 years of age should just buy their own crap. But, if you are looking for some great gift ideas, these all do the job pretty admirably.

Duck Dynasty Willie Robertson Chia Pet – From History Channel. $29.95. To make the DD fan in your house Happy, Happy, Happy. Provided they ain’t some Yuppy Boys and Girls.

chia willie

Real Housewives of Atlanta Kim’s Cushion Cut CZ Engagement Ring – From Bravo TV. $124.95. That’s pretty pricey for a fake ring, but you’ve got to understand: this ring was “inspired” by Kim’s engagement ring! And we all know that “The Ring Don’t Mean a Thing” (unless there’s an opportunity to make some cash on it. Then, it means $124.95.) I was hoping to find Kim’s wig line, but the website for that just takes you to the company blog. Since the line was announced in 2009, I guess you could say, “She’ll Be Tardy with the Wig Line.”

Kim's ring

Honey Boo Boo Ring – If you aren’t really feeling Kim’s ring, but are still on the lookout for some jewelry, head on over to Etsy, which brings its own brand of crazy to the Reality TV gift parade. Here, we have a ring featuring the likeness of our favorite pageant tyrant, Honey Boo Boo. Very creepy. Please note, the other items in this seller’s shop includes a ring featuring Lana Del Ray and the ladies of HBO’s Girls.

Honey Boo Boo Ring

Red Neck Slip and Slide – From Here Comes Honey Boo Boo on TLC. They’re not actually selling one, which is a missed opportunity in my opinion. However, one only needs to procure a tarp, baby oil and/or dish soap, and a hose for an afternoon of summer fun and rashes.

Cuffs by Lynne – From Lynne Curtin Designs. Prices vary. Remember Lynne on Real Housewives of Orange County? She was one of our favorites, primarily because of her side business, a line of really awful cuffs that basically involved hot gluing rhinestoned fleur de lis’ onto plastic cuffs bought at the nearest Michael’s and selling them for around $169. That girl was a hoot. We miss her craziness.

cuffs by lynne

Moonshiners Haute Hillbilly Wine Glass – Large – From Discovery Channel. $14.95. While this is a fine and fancy drinking vessel, it doesn’t come with a high faulutin’ price tag. And it’s got a lid, so you can protect your drink from dust and flies while you’re hiding out in the woods making your white lightening. You’re obviously gonna want a large.

moonshiner glass

Swamp People Choot ‘Em Candle – From History Channel. $19.95. I cannot improve upon the product description: “Their motto is no guts, no gators, but with guts comes a whole lot of stench. The Swamp People Choot ‘Em Candle. The Candle is named “pond scum”, but luckily the bayou tinted candle smells of bamboo, teak, and Spanish moss.”

Swamp people candle

Bear Grylls Ultimate Fixed Blade Knife – From On sale for $62. Man Vs. Wild is no longer on the air, but Bear Grylls still needs to pay his mortgage. And skin random animals found out in the plains, hence this line of knives.

I hadn’t really thought much about ol’ Bear since his show ended, but I recently received his Survival Extreme catalog at our house. No idea how or why, but….. It. Is. Priceless. It’s got jackets and GPSs and coffee mugs and all sorts of survival gear, modeled by Grylls himself. The women’s wear is particularly hilarious. There’s a women’s section including a woman on page 30 wearing a dress. A dress. In a survival catalog. Whatever. Don’t worry about Bear though, he’s getting a new show on NBC.

Do NOT take fashion advice from this guy. Please.
Do NOT take fashion advice from this guy. Please.


Cape Crown Rhinestone Tiara – From $177. 25. This one is a bit pricey (almost as much as a Cuff by Lynne), but it’s actually a multi-use item. You could wear it, obviously, while hanging out with the Honey Boo Boo clan, or any of the Real Housewives. You could wear it to a Big Fat American Gypsy Wedding.


But you could also wear it with my newest obsession, Lilly from Shah’s of Sunset. She’s a Persian princess and seems like she appreciates a good tiara. And she’s an attorney! And she founded her own line of fake eyelashes! And a swimwear line! Kate Middleton, move over.


Reality TV Lover Degree – From Amazon. $13.99. They call it a novelty item, but I fail to see the novelty in spending hundreds of hours watching really awful and entertaining programming.

Reality TV Roundup: Bad Dates, Old Ladies, and Staying Away from Veal

My adult supervisor XFE is out of town again this week, which means I’m left (mostly) to my own devices. I say “mostly” because XFE has kinda got things on lockdown. For example, he recently bought this fancy-schmancy thermostat for the house called The Nest.

I know. It sounds like some horror movie involving some sort of bird-cult probably headed by Mickey Rourke who makes life a living hell for former cult member/child bride played by Natalie Portman or Kirsten Dunst or somebody. It’s very “50 Shades of Grey,” but not sexy. (For the record: still boycotting that book.) Not sexy at all. In fact, I might have just scared myself and now I have to go to sleep alone in my big, scary, empty house that makes weird, unfamiliar noises. Just great.

See you in your dreams, Poe.

Anyway, this Nest thing is supposedly all smart and can be set remotely using your iPhone. This allows Big Brother XFE an unprecedented level of power over my air conditioning preferences, which tend to run into the 80 degree setting range. He’s not abusing his power, but he is calling me at random times to ask why I have/or/haven’t changed the settings. Mostly the answer is, “I hadn’t noticed.”

He also made sure I didn’t gorge Trader Joe’s bacon cheddar ranch dip three meals a day by grilling a whole bunch of meat before he left. I guess I could always put the dip on top of my pork chops, but that just seems like a waste of good dip. BCRD should only be eaten with a chip accompaniment.

You are everything that is good and pure in this world.

So while XFE is keeping a close eye on my room temperature and eating habits, he has not yet found a way to improve my television viewing habits and this past weekend was filled with nothing but junk. More empty, brain-cell-killing calories than 30 tubs of Trader Joe’s bacon cheddar ranch dip.

For one thing, I watched this one episode of a show called “The Wedding Party” on Bravo. It had this fabulous, brash blonde wedding planner chick who made totally inappropriate comments and cussed all over the place. I loved it. Not sure why I haven’t seen any other episodes.

The only thing I didn’t like? At the wedding, she suddenly was wearing a stupid clip-on pony tail of fake hair. All show she’d been so awesome, totally killer wardrobe made up of slightly 1950s-sexy-secretary wear complete with fantastic heels. Then out of nowhere, she goes wedding planner cliché.

I also caught about 5 minutes of the VH1 show, “Big Ang.” The episode I saw revolved around a bus trip to Atlantic City, in which we met a dirty old lady (she’s 65) named Sandy Stitches. Why is she called Sandy Stitches? Because apparently, in a previous episode, she was perving on some young guido and fell out of the hot tub at Ang’s housewarming party. Yes, she was wearing a hot pink bikini.

I just could not get into the show. I remember Big Ang from that mafia show and thought she was an interesting character, but I just couldn’t watch her for 30 minutes. I found her voice and her personality just grating.

I also had to change the channel on another VH1 gem called “Hollywood Exes.” I think the formula for a lot of these reality shows is: put a bunch of women together (preferably on a trip to an exotic location), add alcohol and fedoras, and let the sparks fly. The episode I (briefly) watched had a blonde lady fighting with another woman over whether having a martini off camera made one a bigger hypocrite than the other (who had had an abortion yet did not eat veal.) I swear, that’s what they were fighting about.

Once the blonde one flounced off and the other chicks were high-fiving and quoting Bible verses about wrath, I gave up on the show and flipped back over to Bravo. Where I then proceeded to spend the entire rest of the day watching an awesome trainwreck of a show called “Miss Advised.” (It was a marathon leading up to the finale on Monday. Which I now have to watch along with the heavily promoted new catfight show set in the bitchy New York art world, “Gallery Girls.” You got me, Bravo. You totally got me.)

I must know why this girl is crying and only that evil genius Andy Cohen can enlighten me.

I remember when the commercials came out for “Miss Advised,” which follows three dating “experts” in three different cities. Mostly, they give advice that they then don’t take themselves in their own dating lives. Since it’s all about how hard the dating world is, and since I’m not actually in a big hurry to relive those days myself, I wasn’t really interested in watching it. BUT, it was either that or the Olympics this past weekend, so I buckled down and got to know Julia, Emily, and Amy.

Amy is a desperate New York matchmaker who reeks of desperation. She’s also got some serious food issues. Basically, she’s way too uptight. She goes off on this one guy for not texting her. You get the impression from the way that she’s acting that it’s been weeks since their date, but in actuality, it was about a day. Not surprisingly, he breaks it off at a diner, which she counts as their third date, and which sends her into a tailspin of crying, “I got dumped.” I’m sorry, but two dates does not a relationship make. You didn’t get “dumped.” You weren’t in a position to be “dumped.” It was only TWO dates. You weren’t anything yet! And meeting at a diner to get dumped is NOT a date. That one doesn’t count.

There aren’t enough bubbles in all the land to wash the smell of desperation away.

Julia, a dating columnist living in Los Angeles, is cut from the same crazy cloth. She’s a straight up, stage five clinger. With a  Cinderella complex. She goes on this fantastically weird prom date with some guy she met on Facebook (she saw his pictures in her timeline and thought he looked like fun). Then she throws a fit when he won’t fly down from San Francisco for a dinner party she’s throwing. So, the guy flies down and she comes unglued when she opens the door and there he is. Literally, she falls shrieking to the ground. It’s the craziest thing ever.

Then, he stays overnight and flies back to San Francisco the next morning. While talking to her roommate, we discover that despite making him sleep on the couch, young Julia has thanked her beau for flying down and surprising her in a very oral way.

Different guy. Different date. Same idea.

So, with things progressing so smoothly, Julia flies up to San Francisco for what might technically be called her third date, and immediately upon entering her intended’s apartment insists on having the relationship talk. He, wisely, says “thanks but no thanks” and sends her back to the airport. There’s a heart-wrenching scene of her walking up a San Francisco hill in her high-heeled boots, carrying a Vera Bradley tote, and crying. At least, I think she was crying. She’s had a lot of Botox (at 30) and her face is kinda immobile. She does have very lovely long lashes though. Lovely, tear-glistened lashes.

Having “the talk” and getting “the boot.”

These are our relationship experts, ladies and gentlemen.

The third girl, Emily, is from San Francisco and has a radio talk show about human sexuality. She actually seems like a fairly normal person who’s just trying to figure out this whole relationship thing. She thinks monogamy is not realistic, so she’s trying to be open to other lifestyles, but increasingly finds she’s probably actually pretty traditional and wants to be in a one-on-one relationship.

I know, snooze-ville.

Anyway, that’s what I watched all weekend without any adult supervision to tear the remote out of my hands and make me go outside to enjoy the weather or mingle with humanity.

When One Poe Lies, It Hurts All Poes

There is someone out there ruining the already-kinda-dingy Poe family name.

Someecard Poe
Sure, sure. We hear ya.

An America’s Got Talent contestant named Timothy Poe is being called out for lying about injuries sustained and heroics displayed in Iraq during his time in the military.

He performed last week as part of the Austin auditions, so not only do I have to deal with him having the same family name, but also, being from my neck of the woods.

I’m smirking because I know I’ve already made you like me. And I tricked you into thinking this picture is a video. But it’s not. It’s just a picture. OR IS IT?

To make matters even worse, he’s now blubbering all over TV apologizing, but claiming he doesn’t know his truth from his fiction. He claims, “It’s the truth I know.”

It’s all pretty annoying. We started watching AGT this season because Howard Stern was added as a judge. We’ve never watched the show before, and tend to shy away from all of those talent shows. But XFE loves Stern — listens to him every day, wants to have a man-date with him– so we started watching.

And I have to say, I’ve actually enjoyed it. Stern has brought a freshness to what I consider a pretty stale format (Gong Show, anyone?) full of mostly weird, talentless people looking to expose their weirdness to the world. While there are plenty of those people on the show, I’ve also been drawn into some of the really unique acts that have come on. And, most odd, I’ve gained a newfound respect for Mariah Carey’s official baby daddy, Nick Cannon. (I cannot believe I just said that out loud).

nick cannon
Nick. Earning my respect.

So we were watching the night that Timothy Poe came out and told his story and sang his song. Well, surprisingly, he didn’t actually claim he wrote the song he performed, which was Garth Brooks’ “If Tomorrow Never Comes.”

While his voice didn’t seem that strong, XFE and I both thought he had an amazing story and we were totally taken in. I mean, he had pictures of himself in uniform! His fiancée was right there, standing in the wings! He saved fellow members of his team, who would surely back up his story told on national television! He’d never sung a note until his speech therapist suggested singing as a way to get a handle on his stutter! You can’t make this stuff up!

Only, you can.

The next day stories started to trickle out calling his story into question. Now it turns out the photo he sent in wasn’t him. And there’s no military records of him taking a grenade. And he actually was a singer in a band (the least egregious of all the lies he told).

crying poe
“I’m so sorry. So sorry I got caught in all my lies. That I told on national TV. Hoping that no one would call me out. I just don’t understand what went wrong.”

Anyway, what a piece of work.

This is quite upsetting. Me and Melissa Poe from Big Rich Texas have spent a lot of time and energy trying to rebuild the tarnished Poe family name after this guy dragged it through the liquor-soaked mud. I mean, Melissa put her modeling career on hold for her daughter. And me, well, I started a blog. Obviously, we’re both making the world a better place for all humanity.

And what about St. Louis rapper/DJ Notorious P.O.E.? He doesn’t deserve this kind of guilt-by-association either. He’s a rapper. He’s got enough negative stereotypes to overcome without worrying that people are whispering “Oh, there’s Poe. You know those Poe folks are nothing but stuttering liars.”

Or Angry Johnny singer, Poe (actually, she doesn’t count since that’s not her real name). But still. I really liked that song back in the 90s and I know she feels as hurt, embarrassed and deceived as the rest of us legitimate Poes.

Listen, it is a known Poe trait to embellish, exaggerate, and otherwise revise history. But this? This goes too far. This creeps into Lil’ Wayne territory on the Lies I’m Not Believing Scale.

On behalf of the other Poes, I’m going to have to ask you to step down, Tim Poe, and change your name.




Real Housewives Vacation Packing List

Our trip to Costa Rica is only a couple of weeks away, so, of course, I’ve begun obsessing over what to pack.

Usually, beach vacations are pretty easy to pack for. But, then I saw the Real Housewives of Orange County on their trip to Costa Rica and much like Gretchen, I’m now having a packing and planning meltdown because I have NONE of the proper Real Housewives attire for an action-filled adventure to Costa Rica (that’s in Mexico, according to Alexis).

She’s got jungle-appropriate shoes covered.

 Here’s my list:

Lots of hot pink. Including Lululemon zip up jacket (x2)

Lots of camouflage (including in hot pink)

Brett Michaels headbands/and/or baseball caps ablaze in rhinestones (preferably crosses or other articles of faith)

A variety of straw hats (fedoras, panamas, etc.)

Bikinis – lingerie inspired and/or/ animal print. Trimmed in hot pink.

Tamara’s whole sheer white genie beach get up. And Gretchen’s white denim short shorts.

Alexis’ entire zookeeper safari look.

Waterproof mascara for melt downs.

MOST importantly, a canteen for booze.