sitting on the edge of the sandbox, biting my tongue

July 31, 2011

Happy Birthday Mr. President: The Top 50 Get-Ups of Michelle Obama, Part 2

Filed under: taste — Tags: , — edge of the sandbox @ 10:11 pm

In my previous post I covered the White House mermaid sensation, white suit makeover and bare arms.  In this installment I’m going to focus on peculiar challenges posed by her body type.

40.  Considering her age and all, Michelle isn’t horribly built.  She’s leggy and tall, and she didn’t accumulate inordinate amounts of flab.  Unfortunately, she’s extremely pear-shaped.  She needs to go with subdued dark colors for her bottoms, empire waist cuts and, to balance out the hips, wide necklines.  She doesn’t have the best of posture (a common problem with tall women), and she toddles when she moves.  5 Hours of ballet a week can do wonders, but in the meantime she needs to steer clear from wearing presumptuous fashions.  Anywhoo, that’s MO failing her long black dress test:

Michelle Obama fashion

October 2010.

Clingy fabric shows off her cascading hips, narrow neckline shrinks her upper body, breast are lost in the jewel color.  For bonus negative points, she dwarfs the ladies to her left.

39.  Back in my wasted youth I came across a Dame Darcy comic about Gothic fashion devotees who’d rob old graves to get Victorian dresses.  This must be the story behind MO’s trim:

obama fashion

June 2010.

False eyelashes do not detract from the fact that the cut and the trim make her look utterly boobless.

38.  Still, this is a significant improvement over the original Pierrot:

Michelle Obama fashion

November 2008.

37.  Updated cover girl Pierrot:

Obama fashion

June 2011.

36.  Forget aged Victorian lace.  Here’s Dear Lady’s attempt at Edwardian squeeze:


January 2011

Edwardian squeeze, properly executed:

Corset c. 1912

Back to FLOTUS’s famed Red China dress.  Some fashion is created  for runways only.  Maybe some women get away with this, but evidently not Michelle.  I don’t understand why she can’t do better with couture fit — and there is no way it’s not couture fitted.  Suppose the odd scarf was White House’s last minute attempt to fix the back boob.  By the way this is the original kimono-inspired back:

Alexander McQueen

McQueen 2011.

Sleeves (a MO’s no-no, of course) add a nice balance.  Neat.  I’m not sure what was the point of wearing the dress sans Japanese inspiration and sleeveless, and why was the dress chosen in a first place given… well, the Japanese inspiration and the sleeves.  Dear Lady liked the dress but not what was good about it?

That’s by the House of McQueen, by the way.  This is late McQueen’s original creations:

Fall-winter 2009.

No wonder the guy killed himself.  And Michelle, I dare you to wear one of these.

35.  By request of King Shamus I’m going to do a boob belt:


September 2010.

In my opinion, this is her most problematic boob belt.  Because it’s patterned and shiny, it emphases Mrs. O’s midriff bulge, and it’s the midriff bulge that pushes her belt into the boob area, which has got to hurt.  If she wants a lot of leather in her middle, a custom made waist clincher is  highly recommended for the desirable curve.

This one is a trendy unisex design.  Also, I wonder if she oils her legs.

34.  FLOTUS bump watch.

michelle obama fasfion

December 2010.

I must have stolen this picture from MOTUS a long time ago, and can’t find the post now.

33.  Bandage neckline:

michelle obama fashion

April 2011.

An easy target, I know.

32.  A butterfly boob belt.  Inexplicable blazer and what appears to be ill-fitting pants for a bonus:

November 2009.

31.  Another day, another style, boho in this case.  Who does she think she is, David Bowie?

Michelle O style

February 2011.

You have to forgive the ugly style in this case.  She’s visiting Martha’s Vineyard, the original land of radical chic.

UPDATE: Linked by Political Junkie Mom — Thanks!

UPDATE: #39 is from Obama’s Moscow trip in summer 2009.


July 30, 2011

Happy Birthday Mr. President: The Top 50 Get-Ups of Michelle Obama, Part 1

Filed under: taste — Tags: — edge of the sandbox @ 9:48 am

Get your party hats from Homeless and Conservative, and come celebrate Dear Leader’s Birthday with Michelle Obama fashion retrospective.  I’ll try to post daily, but given that my kids’ naps are withering away, I can’t promise.

50.  Let’s start with authentic Michelle.  Before millions were poured into the “next Jackie’s” wardrobe she wore this:

June 2007.

Already present is her trademark bad judgment: jacket cuts off at the hip, her most problematic area, and the embroidery draws further attention to it.  The slimmest part of her body, somewhere between her navel and her breasts, is obscured.  The choice of color is predictable, which is not bad for a political wife, but that’s no fashionista.  Embroidery looks cheap and cheesy.  There is nothing imaginative about this suit, no interesting design choices, at least not in 2007.  No wonder she ran into so many problems with avant garde fashion!  On the plus side, she didn’t wear tacky jewelry.

49.  Here is Lady O’s 2011 white suit makeover:

Michelle Obama fashion

June 14 fundraiser at a Berkeley spa.

You can see that one job was created by Obama Administration — that of MO’s stylist.  But since previous FLOTUS’s also had stylists, this merely falls under “jobs saved”.  I have no idea if business casuals are appropriate at presidential fundraisers, but the people inside the banquet hall look dressed up.  The patterned skirt draws too much attention to her thighs, a familiar theme with the amply-hipped FLOTUS.  MO insists on hemming her skirts right above her knees, but her knees are a bit thick.

Plus, this is a “cute” look.  It’s bad enough that “kinetic military action” and debt ceiling debate made BO seem powerless and out of his depth, his wife looks like she’s going through a mid-life crisis.

48. Just when you think that cute is her thing, she goes out and wears a dom belt.  What does that make her husband, our President, technically speaking the Leader of the Free World?

dominatrix belt

June 2008.

47. Continuing with the B&D theme.  A nurse:

Michlle Obama FLOTUS

July 2011.

46.  Russian schoolgirl:

Michelle Obama style

September 2010.

45.  Mmm… a bag?

michelle obama bag

Must be one of those spring 2011 vacations.

44.  Here is another recent treat.

Michelle Obama fashion
June 2011 appearance for Lets Move campaign.

Let’s Move… in water?  Because I see scales.

43.  Continuing with the FLOTUS mermaid theme:

Michelle Obama

May 2011.

Sequin fish is all the rage at the White House.  Whether it’s spring fever or something in the water, don’t worry your pretty little head: Global warming is the cause.

42.  Somebody please stop telling Michelle she’s got nice arms because a) it’s not a big deal, and b) she’s the only bare-shouldered person in this picture.  She looks like she’s ready to take her daughters to the beach, but adults are going to the office.  If her hubby counts for an adult, that is.  She certainly stands out — in a wrong way.  It’s been a while since she went sleeveless, and no, she didn’t start a trend.  Time to hang it up.


March 2011.

41.  Whether or not wearing an entire wedding cake for a skirt counts for Lets Move points, it doesn’t do much for Lady O’s hips.


August 2010.

UPDATE: Linked by Political Junkie Mom — thank you!

July 27, 2011

Bay Area Politics

Filed under: Bay Area politics, politics — Tags: , , — edge of the sandbox @ 2:07 pm

When noted airhead Gavin Newsom was for some reason (I hear it has something to do with him being a Democrat) elected Lieutenant Governor, Ed Lee became the mayor of San Francisco.  Lee repeatedly said that he had no intention to run for re-election.  But now Senator Feinstein expressed support for Lee after meeting him at a White House function.

The way the Mayor got to the function raised some eyebrows:

There’s nothing like a trip to the White House to get out of jury duty, especially when it involves the president meeting the World Series champion Giants.

Mayor Ed Lee was summoned to the San Francisco Superior Court jury assembly room in the McAllister Street courthouse Thursday, but after the jury pool was brought into Judge Michael Begert‘s court, the judge excused the mayor from duty because he had a paid vacation coming up, the mayor’s staff said.

The mayor left Friday to visit his two daughters in New York, then is going to be in Washington, D.C., today for the Giants’ Rose Garden reception at the White House and to speak at the Urban Land Institute.

Now, I don’t live in San Francisco, and I have no opinion of Mayor Lee.  However, I just can’t stop wondering if the judge asked Mayor Lee to say hello to the President.

July 25, 2011

Will Jerusalem Be on the Map Two Years from Now?

Filed under: Israel — Tags: , , — edge of the sandbox @ 6:31 pm

This is not a post about the Iranian nuclear threat, which is doesn’t seize to remind of itself.  Quite a few Arabs in and around Jerusalem would like to see Israel wiped out, even at the price of their own lives.

Last week I re-posted a video about the language commonly used to discuss the Arab-Israeli conflict.  Historical Jewish place names are replaced with made-up Arab ones to advance political agenda.

The “International community” is all too eager to destroy if not Jewish people, then any memory of a Jewish presence anywhere in the world.  Legal Insurrection’s Mathew Knee writes about UNESCO editing Jews out of history, again:

A recent United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) report on Arab contributions to science has declared Moses ben Maimon (also known as Maimonides or Rambam), generally considered the greatest of medieval Jewish philosophers and theologians (and incidentally, among the most prominent physicians of his day) to have been a Muslim named Moussa ben Maimoun.

In a few week’s time Fatah and Hamas will declare statehood.  There is probably going to be a war.  Israel will probably retain sovereignty of Jerusalem’s Old City.  Fatah and Hamas will continue laying claim to it, a claim that the “International community” will recognize.

Jerusalem picture

Global warming circa 2008: A rare picture of Jerusalem in snow.

Jerusalem has many names in many languages: it’s Zion, City of David and Salem, to name but a few.  It does have a historic Arab-Islamic name, Al-Quds, which Arab locals prefer, and on which, I’m sure, they will insist.  English speakers should not call the city by any name other than the historic English name because, well, it’s a historic English name.  We call Moscow Moscow, not Moskva, and we call Munich Munich, not Munchen. And, by the way, it’s Pakistan, not Pakeestan.

When new maps go into production, we might just end up with Al-Quds and West Jerusalem, which will make it a sad day in the history of civilization.

Just my uneducated guess.

July 24, 2011

Dear Leader’s Birthday Bash

Filed under: politics, Russia — Tags: , , , — edge of the sandbox @ 10:11 am

Friday I was listening to Mark Steyn, the undocumented anchorman subbing for Rush Limbaugh, who, apparently is attending a funeral of some Jewess.  Unfortunately, Steyn’s hilarious take on Obamster’s 50th Birthday bash scheduled for the day after his own debt ceiling deadline is not available on the interwebs.  Because our President is the kind of guy who celebrates his Birthday with a fundraiser, is advising the minions how to celebrate dear leader’s 50th.  Apparently, the proper way to throw dear leader’s party is to invite 50 people to listen to his 50 minute speech.  I, for one, am looking forward to that speech.  I suspect MO’s holiday attire will be entertaining as well.

If one is a die-hard Obama fan, however, this might be just a tad bit uncomfortable.  Imagine trying to round up 50 individuals for an hour of yawning.  They will probably raise money, and lots of it, because giving to Obamster is the polite thing to do, especially on such occasion, but a party, really?  I’m trying to imagine individuals willing to throw it. Perhaps some shameless party hacks and nerds pretending that this exercise in Presidential personality worship is cute.  I suspect, unless the party is in danger of being immortalized for a news outlet, there will be a lot of no-shows.

Talking about fundamentally transforming American character!  I’m blessed to live in a country where we have to google our founders’ Birthdays.  I happened to know that both John Adams and Thomas Jefferson died on the 4th of July, but that’s easy to remember.

The 22 of April and 21 of January are not easy to remember, but they are branded into my brain.  April 22 is Lenin’s Birthday, which the whole country was required to celebrate.  We schoolchildren had to wear our dress uniforms for the occasion and listen to stories about grandpa Lenin.  The pupils who failed to show up in dress occasion uniforms were yelled at in front of the whole class.  Soviet educators were not sold on self-esteem, you see.

dress uniform
White aprons and bows for girls, white shirts for boys.

Since no special uniform was required for the commemoration of Lenin’s death, few  remember the date.  My uncle happened to be born on January 21, and in the 30s, back when he was a boy, the family couldn’t celebrate his Birthday.

everyday uniform

That's the everyday uniform: Dark blue suits and light blue shirts for boys and black aprons and non-white, typically black, bows for girls. The schoolchildren here are young pioneers, hence the red neckgear.

By the way, this is my fifth post this week.  Mr. Hawkins, you are an inspiration!

7/24 UPDATE: linked by Political Junkie Mom.  Thanks!

July 21, 2011

Blogs Are Like Bands

Filed under: blogging — Tags: , , , , — edge of the sandbox @ 5:38 pm

No One of any Import commented on my previous entry re John Hawkins’s piece on the impending slow death of conservative blogosphere:

My original pledge to myself was one post a week, and lately I’ve been slowing down to that speed.

Huh!  When I started blogging, I thought maybe I’ll post once a week, but make it a very well though-out post.  I’ve been able to do about 2-3 post a week, although considering that this very post is a follow up on something I wrote just a few days ago, my blog is not that well thought-out.  Oh well.

I like reading and writing, and neither one of these activities is required to be a mother, which happens to be my occupation.  So if I have a minute, I blog.  Most of my entries are a few short paragraphs, pretty much the max for a mom of two young children.  If I have an idea that takes longer than a few paragraphs to write, it will take me considerably longer to finish writing.  I’ve done a few longer posts, and I’m working on several at the moment.  It’s fun.

Always on Watch commented:

Blogging is worthy for venting — no matter how small one’s readership.

In the end, however, blogging cannot replace political activism.

To me personally blogging provides an important relief, but I wouldn’t describe bloggin in purely therapeutic terms.  Blogging is a form of political activism, although in and of itself it would accomplish nothing.  Blogging is where like-minded individuals vet their ideas.  There would be no organizing on twitter and facebook if bloggers weren’t there to develop a line of thought with which to organize.  Unlike venting, being a part of a conversation that feeds into a larger political movement is empowering.

Plus, facebook is contaminated with all sorts of nonsense, and tweeting is reserved for one-liners.  One-liners can be fun, but conservative philosophy will not be sustained by one-liners.  And while many of us identify as bloggers, I’m yet to meet anyone who identifies as a facebooker or a tweeter… well, maybe Anthony Weiner does.  I might sign up with facebook and twitter at some point, but right now I feel like neither is worth my time.

Citizen Tom says:

If your sole measure of success is the number of hits, then you will usually be disappointed if you don’t blog for commercial purposes. If it is a hobby, then if you find it an opportunity to relate with others, that should be sufficient to keep a blog going.

I’d like to figure out how to get some walking around money while doing what I like, but I mainly want to keep doing what I like.  And meeting people I would never meet in “real life”.  However, blogging is not like stamp collecting or amateur  carpentry because bloggers have a different sense of purpose.  We are doing it to influence the direction of our country, if not to change the world.

Conservatives on Fire says:

Hey! My one post a day blog suits me just fine. I may not be getting 1000 hits a day but I’m not complaining. So Mister too Big To Fail blogger that, by the way, I never heard before today can go suck on a lemon.

Which brings me to the title of the post.  Blogs are kind of like bands, but for the middle age.  The big ones are often overblown, but there are plenty of cool small ones.  Find them and keep in touch, and pretty soon you have a scene.  Some of the blogs may “make it”, some might end up ripped off, and as Hawkins says, bloggers are not very good with the business part of it.  Hawkins doesn’t think that a small blog can go on for a long time, but underground bands manage to stick around.  Arguably many of them need to quit because rock-n-roll is for the young.  Writing, on the other hand, only gets better with age.  Who history will remember is anyone’s guess.  A blog might generate a mere 10,000 hits, but every reader may go out and start their own blog.

geek band

No, that's not your typical conservative blogger. That's a guy from a geek band Weezer, who, I gather, are pretty big, and who I have no idea who they are.

It’s easy to get lost in the shuffle when there are so many blogs already, but people are always on the lookout for a good new blog.  Zilla says:

Readership may be waning for him and his ilk of elitist cocktail party establishment snobs, but it is GROWING for the “small” right-blogs because we’ll address and explore important issues that the “big important” sites won’t touch. I’ve gotten some modest notoriety because I’m not afraid that somebody will be “offended” when I tell the truth about Obama’s repeated acts of treason and the growing threat of islamic supremacists to this country – the big blogs generally won’t touch those things or they tip toe around it. People will go to places for things that they cannot find elsewhere, and that is why the MSM and the blog snobs are circling the drain of irrelevancy.

Zilla’s blog is doing well, and deservingly so.

July 20, 2011

Occupation Lingo

Israeli Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Danny Ayalon put together a great video explaining the history and legalese of commonly used terms like “West Bank” and “Occupied Territories”.  (Via Angel.)  The term “West Bank” was applied to Judea and Samaria by Jordan to strip the area of Jewish history when Jordan illegally occupied it in 1949, cleansing it of Jews in the process.  Israel’s possession of the land today is perfectly legal, and Jewish construction is fine by international law — if that international law is fairly applied:

Israel is existentially threatened because she’s a small country.  The Jewish state appears weak, and territorially she is, which inspires her enemies’ belligerence.  If Ben Gurion had the spine to keep fighting in 1949, Israel would a safer place today.

There is more to Israel’s weakness than the puny territory.  The video above illustrates that when it comes to writing history, Israel has little if any power.  Doesn’t it strike anyone as odd that in a region with thousands years of history and full of religious significance a plot of land is called the “West Bank”?  For a nice bureaucratic touch, I assume.  Or because the people who called it “West Bank” had so little meaningful connection to the land.  In any event, the language we Americans (and Israelis) use to talk about the conflict is carefully chosen to deny Jewish history.  That’s the starting point of any conversation.

Speaking of history, who teaches this or any other subject to our kids?  Last Sunday’s San Francisco Chronicle ran a cover story on a great charter school in Oakland.  The teachers?

radical teacher
Jacob Weiler (left), Caitin Schoenfelder and Rachel Niederman are Aspire teacher residents in Oakland.

Brain-dead hipsters all donned keffiyehs ten years ago.  I too did stupid things for fashion, just not that stupid.  And now that the trend exhausted itself, it’s safe to assume that Caitlin Schoenfelder is not the kind of person you want near your kids.  My daughter will start kindergarten next fall, and I’m racking my brain trying to figure out where in the Bay Area I can find a school that doesn’t employ fanatical lefties.

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