Tag Archives: Bitch magazine

Working 5 to 9

Trust me when I tell you that you should buy the next issue of Bitch.  Actually, you ought to be subscribing to Bitch, but if you’re not, you should buy the next issue, because I have a piece in it.  It’s a Q&A with actress and writer Jamie Denbo, who is funny as hell onstage but over-the-top hilarious in an interview.

I loved doing the piece, not only because it gave me a chance to catch up with an old high school buddy, but because Denbo gives very good interview, and what she has to say is smart.  The Q&A covers comedy, sex, and – of course – being a chick in a man’s world.

What did not, however, make the final draft were a couple of interruptions.  First, my husband, exasperated at trying to get the kids to bed in the next room, decided to take Benjamin up to the attic to sleep.  (Don’t worry – it’s a very nice, finished attic.)

“Hang on a second,” I told Denbo.  “Honey, don’t take him up there.  That’s what he’s trying to get you to do.  He wants to go up there so he can stay up for two more hours and explore.”  I went back to the interview.  “Sorry.”

Denbo was laughing on the other end of the line.  “Please, don’t apologize.”

Fifteen minutes later, she told me to hang on a second.  “Hi, big girl,” she said to her toddler daughter, who launched into a description of a merry-go-round ride that her father had just taken her on.  Denbo’s husband (actor John Bowie Ross) started up Hairspray for the little girl, but there were several more interruptions to come – Denbo’s cell phone, my toddler daughter needing a kiss, Denbo’s infant son waking up.

After every interruption, we picked right back up in the conversation.  That’s just how we roll these days.


Several months later, I came downstairs at 5:30 AM to write.  I was working on an article for an alumni magazine about an entrepreneur who started a fair trade company.  (That interview was interrupted when Lilah got up early from her nap and then had a poopy diaper.)  Now I was trying to transcribe the interview so I could start writing the article.

I had been aiming for 5:00, but Zach has been having trouble falling asleep lately as he often does during a cognitive burst, and he had kept me up late the night before.  So, I only got in a half-hour of work before I had to shape a few cookies from the sun-butter, whole wheat dough I made the day before and put them on a cookie sheet.

While rolling the cookies, I noticed the sink was dirty.  Part of the nighttime cleaning is to wipe down the sink and counters.  Since I’ve been going to bed so early, I’ve left the evening cleaning to my husband, who both goes to bed and gets up later than I do.  He is less committed to wiping down the sink than I am, and – feeling myself getting annoyed – I forcefully reminded myself that I am less committed to things like filling out school and camp forms than he is.

I emailed my husband with the subject header “Please”: “put cookies in oven for 11 minutes at 375 degrees. bring up laundry from cellar.”  Then I stretched and left for a half-hour run.

When I came back, J had fed Lilah and changed her diaper.  I fumed because J had not washed the tray from the cookies.  He went to shower. Children were waking up all around us.  The cookies had cooled so I packed lunches.

I went up to shower.  When I came down, Benjamin had eaten, Lilah had yet another clean diaper, and the cookie tray was clean.  J left for work while I started pulling clothes over children’s heads.


My Facebook status update read: “I blame Betty Friedan for my lack of free time.  Also Gloria Steinem.”  My inbox was suddenly flooded by comments from women who – despite being committed feminists – knew exactly what I was talking about.

We decided to blame Dr. Sears, as well.

Mama’s little girl

Last week, when I mentioned reading Ms. Magazine at the Y, there were a few commenters dutifully impressed that I read something so heavy while working out.  It is true that I never read fluff on the elliptical.  I have been known to work out with Henry James.  However, this is not because I am some intellectual powerhouse. It is because I despise working out on machines.  I really only like running or swimming, but those aren’t always an option.  Trust me when I tell you that the only reason I do my heaviest reading while exercising is because if I have to really think about what I am reading, I don’t spend a half an hour watching seconds elapse until I can get off the Godforsaken machine.

I actually read a fairly wide range of periodicals.  I’m sort of a magazine junkie.  I have a long history with The New Yorker, although we are taking a break from one another.  I like The Economist as well as The New York Times.  I live for Brain, Child, love Hip Mama, and used to adore Cookie, before it went the way of all good things.  And, though it may shock you, I really dig Glamour.

“Why would anyone want to read this?” my husband asked, although I think he wonders that about everything that isn’t Kitchen and Bath Magazine or somesuch.

“It actually has some great essays.”

“Where?”  He flipped through.  “It looks like all ads.”

“No, there are always interesting essays in the back.  Plus, they are trying to use different sized models.”

Of course, what I didn’t tell him is that, even though I don’t wear makeup, I kind of like the sections that tell me which shade of eye shadow are in this season.  Even though the last time I bought a purse was 2006, I like to know just how out of date my accessories are.  And, hey, this month Glamour admitted it made a mistake about the jumpsuit, although I must say I think they were right the first time when they labeled it a big ol’ “don’t.”

I can’t put my finger on the appeal of this magazine, but I can tell you it is very, very appealing.  I know this because my seventeen-month-old daughter cannot get enough of it.

I’m not sure if it is Posh Spice or the puppy, but she could stare at this month’s cover for ten minutes, happily pointing at parts of the picture and babbling.  Then, she opens it up and points some more, clearly asking me all sorts of questions.  I’ve always made it a habit of reading her whatever she asks about, so now she knows just exactly what cute accessories are in for the spring and how to tone her abs.

Needless to say, I am a little worried about her interest in shopping.  Which is why it filled me with delight this weekend to walk into the dining room and find her intently examining another of my favorite periodicals.

Bitch Magazine.