Saturday, October 07, 2006

Maybelline Pure Makeup

PeaceBang has been very pleased lately with Maybelline Pure Makeup foundation, which bills itself as being 50% water, and therefore decidely ungooey.

The coverage is really excellent and blendable, it does feel lighter than many make-ups, and the shade goes perfectly with PeaceBang's slightly darker-than-usual skin. I will switch to something a bit more luminizing and moisturizing come November, but this is light and lovely for now.

Other bonuses: it comes in a squeeze tube so you're not letting in bacteria every time you open the cap, it travels brilliantly well, and it's way under $10!!

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Zulu Glass Beads

On her way home from a wedding this afternoon, PeaceBang stopped into a little store that specializes in indigenous art and fell in love with zulu grass beads. They are made by Masai women and fairly traded to this particular shopkeeper by the son and daughter-in-law of anthropologists. For $8 a strand, I picked myself out some gorgeous colors and was delighted by all the ways I can wear them. They can also hold pendants, become bracelets, and just rock out a plain, tailored outfit.

I don't know if this company fairly trades these beautiful beads, but this is what they look like:

I bought reds and oranges, and one strand of purple to wear with some purple and pink pendants I already own.

You can twist them into chokers, or you can pull them down so that they cascade and fill in a tailored neckline. I intend to wear them with white blouses and tailored blazers, boot cut pants and bronze cowboy boots.

They're just yummy.


Did Someone Say "Tiara?"

Of COURSE PeaceBang can tell you just where to find a lovely tiara:


Why You Should Care About "Why Men Hate Going To Church"

David Murrow has written what PeaceBang thinks is a little jim-dandy of a book called Why Men Hate Going to Church.

Isn't that subtle?
There's a photo on the cover of a cute white man sacked out asleep in a pew with his mouth hanging open. PeaceBang absolutely laughed out loud when she saw it.

The jist of the thing, as you may have guessed from the title, is that Men Hate Going To Church because it's become a thoroughly feminized institution, totally lacking the muscular quality of our Jesus' earthly ministry, which involved manly things like lowering a paralytic down through the roof of a house to hear a sermon.

It occurs to PeaceBang that some of the guys in her own congregation -- and she has a lot of awesome manly men if she does say so herself, and dear God, they're sharp dressers too!!!-- would really enjoy the challenge of lowering someone through the roof of ourchurch. However, she feels that somehow that might be somewhat of a distraction on a Sunday morning. Maybe PeaceBang herself could be lowered through the roof of the church? On a crane or cherry picker?

ANYhoo, reading Mr. Murrow's book, PeaceBang thought to herself, "Not only does this have implications for the way I will plan my preaching schedule and programming for the year(s), it reaffirms for me that I am absolutely right in refusing to dress like some kind of cross between Endora from 'Bewitched' and Grizabella from a bus-and-truck company of 'Cats.'"

My point, sweet readers, is that when female pastors insist on donning the muu-muu's and other loose, shapeless garments, enormous pendants that look like a transponder to the Mother Ship, comfy, squishy shoes that put a man in mind of his grandmother in her waning years, and all in such colors as suggest a modern dance teacher rather than a professional, she communicates something to the men in the congregation. In my opinion, the message she subtly communicates goes something like this:

"I have just come from a Wombyn's Spirituality Retreat where I referred to God exclusively as Mother/Creator/Spinner/Weaver, where I led small-groups on How Patriarchy Has Ruined The World, and where I shared and cared with every woman there in a deep and intimate way that you could never understand or be part of. And, I talked specifically about YOU with your wife. We discussed how you never listen to her and how you perform in bed."

I am not trying to protect and coddle men who don't need my protection or my coddling. What I am saying is, if we dress like Stevie Nicks' much-less-glamorous sisters, we are unconsciously visually aligning ourselves with one kind of spirituality, and we have to take responsibility for that. PeaceBang believes we can be feminine, honor the feminine Divine, and still dress in such a way that expresses our solidarity with those whose work and persona quite explicitly requires them to button up.

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Friday, October 06, 2006

PeaceBang Answers Your Questions

Lovely and giving people,

PeaceBang would be happy to answer some questions you asked in recent comments.

First, to the ivory-gowned preacher, black pumps are just fine. Please do resist the temptation to be a pretty princess in sparkly wedding shoes, that's a girl. PeaceBang herself would love to wear a tiara on special preaching occasions, but she feels that this would not only bring the wrath of her Puritan religious forebears upon her, but that it just might be perceived as undignified. She may just go ahead and buy a tiara for private wear only, to thrill her Inner Little Diva.
That said, we do not need to match our shoes to our robe. Better to wear lovely black pumps with an ivory robe than scuffed ivory flats with an ivory robe.

Friar Tuck, dear friend, what you wear under your robe does matter, I'm afraid. Because at some point, you will be taking off that robe and interacting with the beloved community. And you need to be polished for that moment. T-shirts, jeans, hopelessly rumped garments, sneakers, all inappropriate. Sandals are up to you, but not with hairy fungus toes, please. There are oodles of other recommendations in the archives here. You are welcome to scroll merrily through them.

Queen Amidhala (I can't spell it), let PeaceBang confess to you that her own favorite preaching robes were modeled after Keana Reeves' costume from "The Matrix." PeaceBang's lovely and talented church seamstress studied the matter and found that the pattern for "The Matrix" Halloween costume was the closest thing she could find to the line and cut that she wanted. So you just rock on with your Queen Amidalah self. We should all have an understanding of the history of vestments. We are responsible for that. We should know what we are wearing, what tradition we are evoking by what we wear, and where we are introducing innovations in vestments. (investments!! hee hee !) Those innovations should not be capricious or indulgent, but should make sense for our tradition and our office. This is a serious matter.

Geneva gowns were designed for men. PeaceBang owns one, but feels no obligation to wear one every Sunday, any more than she feels obligated to-- and please excuse her indelicacy here -- pee standing up. She could, but to do so would be most unbecoming to her as a lady, as that particular arrangement works far better for a man's physique. Thus it is with Geneva gowns.


Sunday, October 01, 2006

Solemn Celebrations Deserve Sartorial Care

At a formal event such an as ordination, is it not okay to throw a robe on over a pair of Dockers and scuffed brown shoes and think that the robe lends you so much dignity that you can get away with it.
We can see your feet. And Dockers is as Dockers does.

Dress up a little, for God's sake. Have a little respect for your colleague, for the congregation, and for the ministry. You aren't any busier than the rest of us who came skidding in from a full day, and you got your invitation to process a month in advance just like the rest of us. Shine a pair of shoes and keep 'em in the car if you must.

And on a personal note to my colleagues who were just shiny gorgeous beings, LOVING your beauty!

P.S. Whoever said you can't wear dangly earrings in the pulpit is over-generalizing. I saw one classy broad wearing a great outfit with danglers. And one of the presiding clergy was wearing fantabulous earrings the size of a baby's head, and they looked AMAZING. You have to know what you're doing.

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When Matching Is Too Much

I want to be gentle about this, because I totally understand the good intent behind this idea, but I saw something that puzzled and concerned me today.

What I am specifically referring to is that I saw a really cute, 30-something female colleague wearing a turtleneck under her robe that matched quite spiffily with her stole. The combined effecte was to make the robe and stole seem not so much like vestments, but more like outerwear of a kicky sportswear ensemble.
Vestments are not sportswear, and we should not treat them as such. That's why it's really best to wear something very traditional under a robe, such as a white blouse. I think that Geneva gowns with no blouse collar whatsoever under them look unfinished on a woman, especially without a hood.

Again, I appreciate the effort to do something attractive with the robe, I just think the choice didn't work.


It's Too Early For Velvet

Keep that velvet in your closet 'til after Thanksgiving.

Kisses, PeaceBang

Sins of the Shins

shins are not pretty
Originally uploaded by Peacebang.

So I'm at an ordination today and I look across the church and see my dear colleague Who Shall Remain Nameless looking really very spiffy in a sports coat and tie and a nice pair of slacks and shoes. But he's got his leg crossed and I see a wide expanse of WHITE GYM SOCK on his leg and I clutch my heart and fall over dead in the pew.

So I'm dead now. I'm writing this from the Hell of having seen a perfectly well-dressed man wearing WHITE GYM SOCKS with his outfit.

My sister said, and I quote, "That's an abomination unto the Lord."

I must agree with her. Gentlemen, for the LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY, get some appropriate socks for when you dress up. And while we're on the subject, male shins are not pretty. They are actually kind of hairy and scary (socks models being the exception to the rule). Please do not scare people by requiring them to look at your hairy leg over an insufficiently long sock. You'll have to advise each other on this, because all I know is that there are man socks I think of as Old Hairy-Shinned Man Socks and man socks that are attractive.

P.S. Sinful shinful colleague, I still love ya.