July 24, 2009

Bikinis. WAHHH!

While I've been home at our beach house accumulating rays (on the days the sunshine decides to participate in the fun) I've worn the same bathing suit every single time. I did it more-so as a precautionary against ridiculous amounts of tan lines. But now when I get in the shower I look like I'm wearing a white triangle top bathing suit. Out. Of. Control.

So, my dad, ever so wise said, "Leighhhh-Tayluhhh (for you, Trip), when was the last time you purchased yourself a new bathing suit?" So, I re-calculated and realized the last one (non pageant related) was a J Crew black and white bathing suit. The culprit of my perma-bikini tan. And then I kept thinking and realized that I indeed wore this swimsuit while on Spring Break in the Bahamas. My senior year of high school. WHAAAAAT?

So, after my yoga class, I bought a new one yesterday! Neat, right? Well, kind of. It gets less neat when you realize what people consider to be a reasonably sized bottom for a bikini. Of course everyone does some killer exercises to prepare for Miss America, but I really have continued to work out post- Miss America. (I'm not going to lie, I ate a lot of Crumbs cupcakes for a little while. But then I pulled myself up by my boot straps and got back to the gym and Bikram.) So when I took a gaggle of bathing suits into the dressing room at Everything But Water yesterday and emerged only twice, and being pleased only once, I realized there is something wack going on with bathing suits. And I'm not the only girl having problems with these Fitting Room stand-offs. Actually, I think most of us are.

We always talk about how models give our young girls a wrong impression of beauty, specifically in relation to body type. Dove has an ongoing campaign with plus-size models in their underpants to prove that stick-thin isn't particularly normal. But honestly, what in the world do swimsuit production companies think when they cut out these teeny pieces of fabric they think are going to cover anyone's rear-end but a toddler wearing a 6x? My body frame is small, but I do have what some people like to call "junk in the trunk" (weird.). I don't know how something like this is fixed (not my rear end, but this issue with teeny bikinis) but it definitely needs to be.

BUT, Betsey Johnson saved the say per usual. Wanna see? This is the one I got!

I'm excited. Partially because I have a weird obsession with polka dots ... hence the awesome (template) background I have. And my sheets.

Dad just busted in here and said "what time does Wonderboy get in today? You better get on the road!" So, being that I'm an obedient child, I have to go! Paul is coming today. And Laura and Bryan. I'm really excited. Like, I couldn't really sleep last night. Then I'm back to NYC on Tuesday co-hosting Tim Morehouse's 31st (HAHAHA ;) !!) birthday party. Here's the Invite:

See some of y'all there... !

And I'm off!

July 19, 2009

Caffeinated Disaster

Okay, so you know how in my last post I said life here was less enthralling? I'm not going to put my foot in my mouth, but I did experience something today that has never happened to me before. And I hope never happens again.

Anyone who knows me, even if just peripherally, is totally aware of the fact that I usually have a coffee cup in my hand. Or a Red Bull. Either way, I'm an addict. Though I'm not ashamed. It could be way worse, right? Like hard drugs or something. People say it's an expensive habit to have. And while they are correct, I do have my "cart boyfriend". He works the coffee cart in front of Gracious Home on 23rd and 6th. SO nice. And he's got nose problems, too. He can read me like a book. He knows when I need an extra caffeine boost and gives me a large. He knows I take non-fat milk and 2 Splendas. He's my cart boyfriend. Best part? My coffee costs a buck.

So while I'm in Virginia I'm making new friends at Starbucks but today I stopped by 7/Eleven for a Red Bull on my way to grab a canvas from Michael's. Anyways, I pulled a Red Bull out of one of the tall refrigerated stations lining the side wall. And before I knew it the whole rack of Red Bull was FLYING at me. You know when you pull out a drink and decide you want another brand there is a bit of resistance from the back part of the drink line when you put back in the unwanted drink? Well apparently I broke the plastic front off of the line of Red Bull and that resistance pushed every single can out at me at a speed which I could not control. So there I stood, approximately 12 busted sugar free Red Bull cans lining my feet and an audience of 4. The best part? I just stood there and stared trying to figure out how to fix this total faux-pas. Solution you ask? I jimmy-rigged the front plastic piece, stuck a few cans in there and then the rest went into random drink lines. I paid. I left. Moral of the story ... first pull your can up and then out, not straight out.

The scene looked very similar to this photo.

Anyways, things are still trucking along here in Virginia. Last night we (meaning my mom and dad, and a stray from next door ... seriously, but that's another story) went downtown to go to the block party. We parked in our church parking lot and I had my mom take a picture of my dad and I praying in front of Hampton Baptist. We saw lots of folks we know around Hampton and jammed out with the band playing, Excess Baggage.

I'll have more for you later. I'm still reeling from the disaster down the street. Classic. So classic.

July 16, 2009

I Mean, Just Wondering

I was thinking about what has happened in my life in the past three days that would suffice as any sense of legitimacy for you to read about it ... and be interested. And, to be honest, life outside of New York is slightly less enthralling. But I suppose that's part of the reason why I'm home. I mean, my current front yard is also synonymous with "beach", so I guess I can handle that. That's a pretty big difference from Delancey and Allen.

First things first ... I don't have to have sinoplasty! This = glorious news. I went to the ENT on Wednesday and my septum is only slightly deviated, meaning I could have sinoplasty to fix my sinuses but it isn't necessary (I like the "unnecessary" part). He did however say that he could saw off the calcium deposits I've acquired on the bridge of my nose, as well as straighten it out a bit. But y'all, that is rhinoplasty. Rhinoplasty is the fancy medical word for a true nose job. Friends, not happening. SO I'm having a procedure done next week that will help out my nose bleeds (I've got some trifling-ly large blood vessels hanging out). Yada. Yada. Yada.

SO, I'm learning how to cook. And I've got to tell you how big of a deal this is. Here is a comment to give you a bit of an idea; the first night I donned the apron I was asked via Graham Bell's fancy creation if I burnt down the kitchen (answer: no). Please note that I wasn't asked if I burnt the food, or if it was edible. He asked if I burnt the kitchen down. Get. It. Outta. Here. Anyways, I've cooked for myself, my mom, and my pops for the last four consecutive evenings, and no one's gotten sick from the following:

Evening #2: Fried Chicken, Homemade Mac and Cheese, Fresh Green Beans
Evening #3: Meatloaf, Raspberry Vinegar Pasta (it's full of yummy vegetables)
Evening #4: Baked Chicken (a whole one ... including gizzard pulling-outage), Mashed Potatoes, Corn on the Cob

I'm rackin' up for the reportoire.

Next cool thing on the agenda: IT'S SHAWN DECKER'S 34th Birthday!!! Okay, y'all who don't know him, I'm just going to apologize. Not because I'm writing about him and you don't know him. But because you don't know him. You don't have the rad-ness he exudes in your life. Even if it's just on the peripheral. Shawn was diagnosed with HIV when he was 11 years old, which means he's been living with this stupid disease for 2/3 of his life. Scratch that. He's been kicking AIDS in the face for 2/3 of his life. Last year I joined the New York AIDS Walk team with he and others that have an intense disdain for one of the lamest diseases ever ... we raised $58,000 or so and now we're taking our case to the nation's capitol. Why? Because of the alarming infection rate in DC. It's on par with Uganda's infection rate. NOT OKAY. So, in honor of Shawn I'm going to finally get my act together and join the Supersnack team so on October 3rd we can take it to AIDS.

Oh, and hey, if anyone wants to send me back to South Africa for a summer or four to help families with AIDS. Or orphans with AIDS. I'm not averse to the idea.

July 13, 2009

Another One Bit The Dust

So, this weekend I headed off to the institution that imparted handfuls of knowledge upon me, and plenty of life experience; The University of Virginia. My mom was heading out to Charlottesville for the wedding of a gal I grew up with at Hampton Baptist. So, I decided to take advantage of the outing and met up with some of my favorite people at the University. Most who know me are very aware of how much I enjoy food, thus, when I go back to Charlottesville I view it as an opportunity to catch up on lost time with the food that helped shape me (literally) during my collegiate years. So I had the following: Bang, White Spot, Bodo's, and Arch's. And evening attendance at: The Virginian, Coupe's, and Buddhist. Don't be jealous, I'm scared to put on pants.

The next day we went to Miss DC to cheer on Kate Marie in her last evening of service. Let's just say ... We. Are. So. Happy. And I was really proud of her. AND we got to see Bubby and Laura which is always a baller moment.

Then Lisa so kindly peeled me out of bed this morning to hit the road around 545am so we would miss traffic heading out of DC. We then ran errands (lame, lame, I know ...)

While I'm in Hampton I'm also learning how to cook. Can you imagine? Tonight I had my first lesson and I'm able to do the following: steam crab legs, bake salmon, roast red potatoes, and grill some legit vegetables. Next on the list: fried chicken. A required staple for acceptance as a Southern woman. I've got the best teacher, though ... Colonel Sanders takes a backseat in comparison to what my mother can whip up. It's just universally known that Lisa is the JAM at cooking fried chicken.

But here's why I'm really home ... I'm getting a nose job. BAHAHA. Okay, kind of. Not the exterior. But I'm getting my sinuses "roto-rootered" in the words of Faith Ossmann. I'm going to the doctor tomorrow who will gage it's state of un-awesomeness since the most recent breakage. Then he'll tell me if he has to re-break it this time around. I'm keeping my eyes on the prize: Breathing. Less sinus headaches. AND, perhaps even less nosebleeds. Then Paul won't have to stick a vaseline coated q-tip up my nose anymore. All great things.

I'll keep you updated. This could be good. Like wearing sunglasses indoors because of two black eyes and a nose cast good.

PS: As I'm writing this my father just picked up the Cosmopolitan mag I picked up at the grocer today *because my sorority sister BRENNA MCGUIRE is jamming out on page 132!* and it says "125 Sex Moves" on the cover. He quips, "125 Sex Moves? Who do they have writing this? Hell, they're 8 behind! It's 133". And people wonder why I say everything that comes to mind.

July 8, 2009

Au Revoir Miss New York crown.

I'm not Miss New York anymore. Before you get all bleary eyed for me ... don't. Phenomenal year? Check. Did I almost lose my sanity? Check. Am I on the Miss New York board and prep team? Check. So, drop the tissues and read along.

I've just typed and deleted several times. Toeing the line made of eggshells. (I know, I felt like combining two old adages, play along, please).

I so enjoyed watching the ladies compete for my job, continually encouraging the girls to remember why they were there ... and suggesting that it should be their platforms because if it isn't the year will be long. Very long. Anyways, I loved being there and being a part of it. But when I was dragging my suitcase and hanging bag up the hill towards The Egg 30 minutes before the show started on Thursday night without a ride, I was gleaming that I would soon be able to have Paul carry my bags on vacay. BAHAHA. Kidding. I carry my own. I had to learn how to maximize the amount of luggage I could get up and down my FOURTH floor walk up. Though, my super Dave is pretty rad, when he sees me struggling he's throwing me AND the bags over his shoulder.

That Friday morning I drove to Manhattan dropped off a lot of clothes at my apartment, and then jetted to the airport to meet Paul who was flying in from Sweden, so we could then board a flight to go to my dear friend Carly's wedding in Richmond, VA. Run-on? Don't care. We. Had. A. Blast. What a gorgeous wedding it was! I got to see many of the beautiful Belles and other collegiate buds. But, the 6am flight departure to NYC came a weee-tad early. The 420am wake-up call ... even earlier. We hit the streets in our mini-cooper, thanks to zipcar, and arrived safely before the show.

Giving up my crown was pretty bittersweet. I have worked really hard to obtain this goal. But, on the flip side, I am ready to blaze a new trail for myself. This part of my life will not define me by any means. When I'm 40 I hope no one introduces me as former Miss New York, 3rd runner up to Miss America at a cocktail party. I hope I'm Leigh-Taylor Smith. And there to define myself in that time and space. Well, hopefully by 40 my last name will be different ... but you never know ...

Congratulations to Alyse Zwick, Miss New York 2009.

And, hey, congratulations to my Miss Arlington sister Caressa Cameron for snatching the title of Miss Virginia 2009. The last 3 out of 4 Miss Virginia's have been Miss Arlington. Wanna know who dropped the ball? ME!

On that note, next time I write ... (slash kind of this time) I'll be leading a normal life! Or, far from normal knowing me. But either way, stay tuned!