Triticum Turgidum

Lying Dormant and Waiting to Bloom Since 2005

My Photo
Location: The Prairie, Illinois, United States

I am a beauty-loving ambidextrous higher-order primate who learned transcendental meditation at 7, statistical analysis at 23, tap dancing at 30, and piano at 35. I tolerate gluten, lactose, and differences of opinion, but not abuse. Or beets.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Sunlight in a bottle

A Few of My Favorite Things

Some of my former perfume board buddies have decided to post their favorite perfume finds of 2005 on their blogs. I decided not to participate because pregnancy rendered me unable to wear perfume almost 8 months ago, meaning 2005 was a wash for me scentwise. But I figured I'd share in their spirit by posting a few things that I discovered or rediscovered during 2005.

Asfour EDT. Okay, I just said I can't wear perfume, but this was a happy find. I love citric notes that don't smell like sweat and I love iris. This scent marries the two seamlessly. Fresh yet earthy, blah blah blah. Let's just say I like it. Available at

Bissell SpotBot. If you have spots on your carpeting, this will annihilate them. No more scrubbing on your hands and knees. The only problem is that you may end up with perfect 6" circles of bright cleanliness on an otherwise dingy carpet. Solution: make a pattern of circles or spell out a dirty (er, clean?) word. Fun!

Shirataki Noodles. Thin, bean-thread-like noodles that have zero impact on your blood sugar and about 20 calories per (generous) serving. Warning: they're almost 100% soluble fiber so they function somewhat like Colon Blow. Consume wisely.

Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion. The best stuff on the market for oily skin. Unlike every chemical sunscreen I've ever tried, this SPF 55 physical sunblock actually reduces the oiliness of my skin and prolongs the life of my makeup. It's $36, but I've been using mine daily (face only) for 7 months and I'm still nowhere near the bottom of the bottle.

Oink Baby. These baby clothes make me laugh out loud. They're modern interpretations of retro adult fashions, mostly from the 60s and 70s. Picture mini leisure suits, oversized collars and cuffs, Pucci-like patterns. I figure anything that gets people to smile with delight when they see my kid will be good for her. Check out my latest acquisition.

My friend Kristie. We've known each other for almost 30 years. Two days after Christmas I received a hostile email from a member of my birth family, and right on its heels came a warm and supportive email from Kristie. She's the closest thing to a sister I have, and has known me longer than anyone except my parents and brothers. Family is what you make it. I love her.

Patrón Añejo Tequila. Good sippin' tequila, zero gag factor. G bought me a bottle for Xmas. (I'm expecting diamond earrings for my push present. Sorry, tequila won't cut it.) I'll be saving my Patrón for the first hot day of the year, when I can sit outside and consume a nice tumbler of it, chased by an icy beer. Ahhh.

Zingerman's Pecan Pie. Hands down, the best pecan pie in the world. The texture is chewy, crisp, almost toffee-like. Not syrupy. The flavor is deeply nutty and smoky, sweet but not too. Worth the outrageous price at

There's a lot to love in this world; you just have to keep yourself open to experience. With that, I wish you all a happy new year. :-)

Monday, December 19, 2005

and they don't eat quiche

Himself the Elf

This is my SO/spouse/DH/lo-vah (see this discussion at Slap of the Day for more amusing and annoying euphemisms). He reminds me of a giant elf with his pointy chin and twinkly eyes.

We were preparing for our yearly "Mardi Gras in November" party. I made him shuck his shirt for the photo, but he insisted on putting it back on for the party (rats). I think the hairy chest and pale skin make the picture, don't you?

The beads he's wearing feature road signs with dirty messages on them. My friend Maria bought them for me in New Orleans during an academic conference we were attending. She put them around my neck with a smile and we stood there talking to various colleagues, some of whom I wanted to impress, for almost an hour before I finally looked down and realized that my necklace said things like STOP AND BLOW and INTERCOURSE 69. Maria had a good laugh. I passed along the favor by making G-money wear them for the party.

Yes, we are the very definition of klassy. Keep an eye out for pictures of our newborn wearing the same beads (and no shirt).

Saturday, December 03, 2005

For more political baby t-shirts see

No Place for Your Daughters

Many thanks to The Economist for printing this (Nov 26-Dec 2 2006 issue, p. 58):

"Tuning in around the clock, via satellite or internet blog, to any bout of mayhem anywhere, you might not think the world was becoming a more peaceable place. But in some ways it is, and measurably so. A recent Human Security Report released by the Liu Institute at the University of British Columbia registers a 40% drop in the number of armed conflicts between 1992 and 2003, with the worst wars, those claiming more than a thousand lives in battle, down by 80%. While 28 armed struggles for self-determination ignited or reignited between 1991 and 2004, an encouraging 43 others were contained or doused.

"Yet measured in a different way, from the point of view of the half of the world's population that is female, argues the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of the Armed Forces, the world is an awfully violent place, and not just in its war zones. Men still fill most of the bodybags in wartime, including in civil wars, even on DCAF's figures, but their sisters, mothers, wives and daughters, it argues in a new report entitled 'Women in an Insecure World', face nothing short of a 'hidden genocide'.

"Violence against women is nothing new. DCAF's contribution is to collate the many figures and estimates--not all of them easily verifiable, it has to be said--on everything from infanticide to rape (in both war and peace), dowry deaths, sex trafficking and demostic violence (in richer countries as well as poorer ones).

"According to one UN estimate cited by DCAF, between 113m and 200m women are now demographically 'missing'. This gender gap is a result of the aborting of girl foetuses and infanticide in countries where boys are preferred; lack of food and medical attention that goes instead to brothers, fathers, husbands and sons; so-called 'honour killings' and dowry deaths; and other sorts of domestic violence. It implies that each year between 1.4m and 3m women and girls are lost to gender-based violence. In other words, every two to four years the world looks away from a victim count on the scale of Hitler's Holocaust.

"Women between the ages of 15 and 44 are more likely to be maimed or die from violence inflicted one way or another by their menfolk than through cancer, malaria, traffic accidents or war combined. Poor health care means that 600,000 women are lost each year to childbirth (a toll roughly equal annually to that of the Rwandan genocide). The World Health Organisation estimates that 6,000 girls a day (more than 2m a year), mostly in the poor world, undergo genital mutilation. Other WHO figures suggest that, around the world, one woman in five is likely to be a victim of rape or attempted rape in her lifetime."

Dismal figures, these. My friend barbarafromcalifornia recently posted an entry called "Erasing" History on her blog Women on the Verge of Thinking. Inspired by her own fear that the Holocaust would eventually cease to occupy a place in collective memory as the atrocity it was, she wanted to know which historical event readers hoped would never fade from scholarly accounts of world history. I wasn't sure how to respond until I read this entry in The Economist. I don't fear that this information will evaporate from collective memory so much as I lament the fact that it doesn't even occupy a space there. Ironic, since everybody on earth either is a woman or is related to one. When will people come to understand that everyone, female and male, is a stakeholder in women's health and safety?