Friday, September 08, 2006

Weight Falling Off

By the way, Anonymous who wrote in a few days ago to say that you had had a nutritional epiphany of some kind and that the weight was falling off like mad, congratulations!

Can you tell us more about your nutritional conversion?

We'd love to hear about it.

Cheers, PeaceBang

Miss Piggy's Hooves

Well, I wore these darling shoes yesterday with pants, and

steve madden shoe

discovered that a shoe that makes the leg look gorgeous, highlights calf muscles and dainty feet when worn with a knee-length skirt make the same feet look like HOOVES when worn with pants. Like Miss Piggy's hooves, to be specific.

Today I am writing my sermon (and two funeral services) at home and looking like a blimp in a flowy Indian skirt and an ugly, tattle-tale gray summer shirt. So we're just very high on the self-esteem right now. I share this with you only to say: LOW SELF-ESTEEM IS NOT AN EXCUSE TO SHOP FOR MORE CLOTHES.

In fact, when we're feeling particularly unattractive, it's best to stay out of the stores, find creative solutions with garments we already own, make an extra effort with hair and make-up (or grooming), stand up straight, smile a lot, and just ride the Ugly Wave until it's ridden out. The Ugly Wave comes to us all. It never lasts forever. You will be cute again before you know it! You must believe!

On Sunday it will be slimming black, believe me, flattering heels and leek soup between now and then.

Why are so many professional caregivers so fat, do you think? Is it because we nurture ourselves with food, is it because being chunksters gave us more compassion in the first place, is it because we don't make enough time for self-care, is it because compulsive overeating is our passive-aggressive way of rebelling? Is it all of the above?

PeaceBang is back on the food monitor and back to the gym. She is deeply considering the wise and lovely activist and naturalist Jane Goodall's statement, "My idea of pure misery is large meals that leave me feeling full."
Oh, Jane. I will so try to remember that when I'm going back for seconds.

And by the way, I can't recommend highly enough Jane's new book, Harvest for Hope: A Guide To Mindful Eating. If you're like me and felt terribly confused by the difference between farm-raised salmon vs. wild salmon and you didn't really know what GMO's were, exactly, and you wanted a primer in grass-fed animal issues and sustainable agriculture in general, and you wanted it to be available to you in one highly readable book narrated by a truly admirable human being, well, you have to get this one. I think it might be changing my life.


Thursday, September 07, 2006

"Image is Everything"

Thought you might like this article, which was the lead article in today's Boston Globe Style section:

Sorry I can't post much right now, and nor, for that matter, can I think of a THING to wear in this damned transitional season! I changed three times today because I felt fat and hideous and hot in everything.

During a pastoral call yesterday to a woman whose life is in turmoil right now, she said, "What a beautiful skirt. Is that a teaching outfit?"
"No," I said. "It's a coming to see you outfit."
"That's a very becoming skirt," quoth she. And I didn't think of this until just now, but how sweet is that??? In the midst of true life disaster, you have to love that the average woman is still going to be digging a cute skirt. Life goes on. If you can notice your minister's skirt, you're clinging to some modicum of normal life.

This is totally off topic but I just have to tell you, because I'm too lazy to post it on PeaceBang:
Another parishioner of mine wound up at the hospital for a few days unexpectedly and didn't have time to make arrangements for her new kitty, so I drove over to make sure the little thing wasn't dead and -- non-cat people can tune out now -- she was a TORTOISE SHELL SHORT-HAIR WITH BIG POINTY FOX EARS AND HUGE PAWS WITH EXTRA TOES!!!!! Her name is Lil. I am in love.

That was the good thing that happened today. Lady Death danced off with one of our most beloved elders, and that was the most hole-making thing.

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Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Bathing Suits And You

What, oh what does the discerning pastor wear to the church pool party?

NOT, as one wise reader has determined, a bathing suit.

God, no.

Darling dears, we all know that bodies are beautiful. We all know that God loves our bodies as they are, and wants us to take care of them and be good stewards of them. In the best of all possible worlds, we could just strip down to our bikinis in front of our congregants and just be regarded as another healthy body that God hath fearfully and wonderfully made.

However, in case you haven't noticed, we don't live in the best of all possible worlds. We live, in fact, in a clergy generation that must be incredibly sensitive to boundary issues. Therefore, walking around scantily clad for any reason is not advisable for men and women of the cloth.

PeaceBang got herself into quite a little mess around this issue when she was cast as Miss Hannigan in a recent production of "Annie" and found herself arguing with her director about one of her first act costumes. Much against her will, even though the show was on a stage 30 minutes away from her town, PeaceBang did appear in a very flimsy outfit, including thigh-high stockings and a garter belt. She did have the benefit of a robe to cover herself, but I'm afraid that cleavage was very much in evidence, as was leg. Her only consolation was that the lights were very low in the scene, and that she was playing a hugely comic role. Still, if she didn't have a fantastic congregation full of mature, understanding people who themselves adore the musical theatre and fully support her in playing singing and dancing alcoholic child abusers, she might have caused a bit of a scandal. She is seriously grateful that her people who attended the show were right proud of her, and made sure to say so. If any of their estimation of her was lowered by that outfit, PeaceBang has to accept those consequences.

Phew. You can tell that PeaceBang still has some residual anxiety about that one, can't you? Next time she does a show she will definitely put a costume clause in her contract.

ANYway, my modest cupcakes, while men may be able to appear in swimming trunks and still maintain a modicum of dignity wet and half-nekkid, PeaceBang doesn't recommend it for ladies or gentlemen. It's not just about dignity, but about sexuality, I'm afraid, and about boundaries. If you're splashing around in the pool, how can you have that nice conversation with that shy person who's been waiting for just the right time to sidle up to you and let you know that he really appreciated your sermon on depression, and that he has seen a doctor, and that he is on medication and he thanks you for tackling such a difficult subject from the pulpit?
How are you going to keep that kid from the youth group or that new member who has a crush on you from fixating on your bosom, your pecs, or your belly button? Do you really want to invite that kind of fantasy? Wouldn't it be more appropriate and less fraught to stay poolside in a charming floppy hat and toss the Frisbee back when it goes out of bounds?

I think the pastor's role at a pool party is to stay dry and smiley, to enjoy the frolicking of her people, and to sip non-alcoholic beverages and chuckle at Bill's imitation of a porpoise, or to applaud Timmy's belly flop from the diving board. If you've been invited to vacation with parishioners or to use their pool -- or if you're in a bathing suit for a water aerobics class, that's different. Wear your one piece tank with impunity and enjoy the water.

If you should be wearing a highly unflattering bathing ensemble at a public beach and happen to run into a parishioner while you're innocently floating on the waves, don't fret. You're entitled to get your bod out there in the sunshine,too, and if you are seen by one of your flock, smile and make the best of it. Just think: you've provided them with a mental image that may get them through their next scary speaking engagement!

Age is an important factor here, too. You may think, "Heck, I'm so old no one's going to get swoony at the sight of my worn out old bod." Maybe that's true. Maybe not. However, if you don't mind congregants worrying about the moles on your back (are they pre-cancerous? Shouldn't he have those checked out?), noticing just how much weight you've gained (gosh, I never noticed how big her thighs are! You just can't tell under her robe!), or finding the sunken chest of their formerly young and virile pastor a little bit sad, by all means, do parade around in the all-and-all. Just know that you can never get that privacy back once you've given it away.


PeaceBang's Products Thumbs Down

Halo Shampoo and Conditioner were terrible products for my fine, thick, wavy, colored hair, although they say all kinds of worshipful things about it here:

And while you're at it, don't bother with the L'Oreal Illumination loose eye shadow that comes in the cunning little jar with its own brush. It's a mess, it gets everywhere but your eyelid, and the brush is worthless.

I'm also not sold on Stila gel cheek color. Maybe when my skin is paler than it is now, I will actually be able to tell I'm wearing it. As of now, I have to use two or three applications and I still can't see it on my face. My fingers, however, look nice and rosy.

Always willing to suffer for my readers! Any other bloopers out there? Let us know in the comments!

What Should Boys Have?

Plip Plop le Chevre asks about necessaries for a male minister's wardrobe. PeaceBang, who seems to be falling asleep every time she sits down, is deeply gratified to see that the whole community has pitched in and given him fine, fine advice in the comments section.

PeaceBang thinks it must be allergy season, as she's coughing up hairballs and itching her nose and sneezing and dropping her head into her soup with drowsiness. What kind of allergy, though? Ragweed? Cat dander? End-of-summer somatized bummerdom?


For The Long-Tressed Ladies

Apparently these have some amazing grippy powers. Check it out, long-haired vixens,

Long-haired gents, don't you dare.

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