Monday, October 17, 2011

Falling Asleep in My Makeup? Guilty as Charged.

Am I the only one getting bored with the health, beauty, and fitness advice celebrities have to share? Drink lots of water? Whoa – never heard that before! Steamed salmon and veggies for lunch, then a salad with grilled chicken for dinner? Great – and then what? A bag of Oreos and a tub of spinach dip? Wait! You hike with your dogs and do pilates? Stop the presses!
It's not so much that I'm bothered by the fact that these statements seem tired and somewhat disingenuous. What about airbrushing? Photoshop? Plastic surgery? Good old fashioned starvation diets? It's more that I don't understand why these folks can't come up with something a bit more snappy to credit for their glowing good looks and preternaturally smooth skin? In fact, I'm kind of surprised more celebrities don't throw crazy advice out there to mess with us or just to see if we're paying attention? At least Katy Perry is honest about the fact that she ordered a special dentist's chair to nap in while she has her makeup done and Fabio once claimed to wash his hair with a bar of soap.
But no piece of advice seems to pop up more in interviews than the cardinal rule of celebrity skincare: never go to sleep without washing off your makeup. Apparently no matter how tired, or drunk, or done up you are in Tinseltown, nothing will bloat your pores and wither your looks like overnight exposure to cosmetics.
In theory, this beauty "secret" should probably please me. After all, the fact that I rarely manage to put makeup on anymore renders it largely unnecessary to worry about taking it off. And yet, my skin still looks sallow and unhealthy, leading me to suspect that in my particular case it is appropriate to substitute "bits of dried yogurt and that strange dazed expression of despair and defeat that I apply fresh each morning" for "makeup." 
The thing is, I so rarely manage to spend time in this mythical state some call "sleep," that if I were somehow to accidentally stumble into that magical place known as "bed," and through some minor miracle, I also just happened to be wearing makeup, the last thing on my mind would be exfoliation. I've fallen asleep in my clothes, contacts, and the middle of a sentence. I'm more worried about falling asleep in my car, or in line at the grocery store than in my makeup.
I get it, I get it. It's important to take good care of your skin. And as far as advice goes, this particular pieces is probably pretty innocuous. But if someone could just get me a quote on that dentist's chair, or find out what brand of bar soap Fabio used, I'm pretty sure I'll be looking better in no time.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Que Sera, Siri?

Apple just announced the arrival of the new iPhone - not the iPhone 5, as anticipated, but the iPhone 4S - a pumped up version of the iPhone 4 featuring blazing speed and Siri, the "intelligent assistant." Now, the only kind of speed I am interested in these days would help me stay awake past 8 p.m. and keep me thin, but I must admit that having my own virtual trivia valet is intriguing. I definitely could use a memory concierge to manage all those critical "memos to self" I currently scrawl on the backs of envelopes and immediately lose - or, more often, forget to record in the first place. You know, things like: Wash face! Buy vodka! Find high-paying part time job with flexible hours, good benefits, and excellent on-site affordable childcare! Look into acquiring helper monkey! 
So it's pretty clear that I probably need Siri's services more than the average iPhone user. But I have a few reservations. 
For one thing, it is hard to look past the fact that Siri sounds something like a female version of Stephen Hawking. I know that I, for one, will not be able to refrain from wasting her assistance and my precious time with questions like "what will happen as I approach the singularity?" (If that makes no sense, go watch A Brief History of Time. It has Homer Simpson illustrating the physics of a black hole, or something like that, so you know it will be time well spent.)
But mostly, I think my deal with the iPhone 4S is Apple's claim that Siri "understands what you say and knows what you mean." Sounds excellent, right? I know that I am really tired of all the blank looks and growing sense that I am mostly speaking jibberish. Maybe with Siri, I can finally stop unloading my existential dilemmas on my exasperated friends and annoying my husband with questions about the neighbor's cat.
And then reality sets in. Why am I going to trust Apple on this one? I mean, how many text messages has their smart and helpful auto-fill/auto-correct system messed up for me? You know what I'm talking about.
You try to send someone greetings for the Jewish High Holidays and end up wishing them a happy Tosh Hashanah. Confusing - but still comprehensible. But your question about services for Tom lipoid (auto-correct for Yom Kippur) services is beyond obscure, and maybe a little morbid. At least if your name is Tom Lipoid. 
Maybe you're feeling a bit gangsta? Well, you're going to sound more geek when your greeting gets switched to "What up, Biotech?" 
Also mysterious are the words selected for the auto-fill feature that guesses what word you are typing after a few letters: sideburns? metabolism? extrovert? spandrel? Are these really words that people use so much they merit auto-completion? Why not words like gravity? Or douchenozzle? Or craptastic?
Wait a minute...douchenozzles actually gets auto-filled. Hmmm. I won't be lining up for the iPhone 4S just yet, but if you get a chance to chat with Siri maybe you can pass along a question for me.
What the he'll?