Monday, July 20, 2009

BE: To Flake or To Glow?

Yesterday, I realized I no longer glow. I flake. You know, as in, I actually flake. The skin on my elbows, my legs, my head. This is often the case for women of a certain age. But what really horrified me was that I didn't really care. I mean, it would be nice to glow of course. But, flaking, that's just where I am right now.

One day, I will glow again - maybe with the help of moisturizers, luxurious bath routines, personal groomers, sea weed and vodka scrubs, good low carbon footprint lighting - but I will. My newest friend, Milicent, who lives in Mallorca, swears we just bathe too much on this side of the planet. We strip our surfaces of essential body oils and the result is, well, really bad flaking. I explained to her that flaking is just the natural order of things (buy my book - "I Wasn't Born This Way". The alternate title, which I personally voted for but my publisher didn't like, was "Not One of My Cells Was Present at Birth - The Perpetually "NEW" Me." I just think it is clearer and, for marketing reasons alone, that's really important. ) But, back to what's important, Milicent is on a disciplined regime of one bath every 9 and a 1/2 days and I have to say, the results are astounding. She virtually shimmers. The natural emoliants in her skin literally take on a life of their own. I admit to being envious and I have committed to joining her in the summer and adhering to her routine. If you, too, are interested visit us. Mallorca is lovely that time of year and not bathing keeps the hordes away.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

MAKE: I Am So Lucky

My friends Val, Cynthia and Merrell are so like me! We all have children, we try and work when we can and we breathe oxygen. It's ridiculous! We decided, since we share so much and our nutrition and life ethos' are SO similar, that we should put our heads together and come up with an easy idea for how to make dinner regularly, you know, so that we can feed our families. Well, it was AMAZING. Cynthia suggested that if we bought food and took it home with us we would be a long way to our goal. I agreed. Merrell was all over the idea and even added that getting food they would like and actually eat might enhance the experience. And, Val, she had the great idea that opening a wine bar together would provide a good place for us to stop and gather ourselves before taking the food home. It's amazing what a group of clever, dynamic women can come up with if given half the chance.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

DO: Staying SANE

As I write this, I am completing the fantastic two-week “SANE” mental heath programme described below. Designed by self-described specialist Dr. Bettina Ruiz, this approached allowed me to think clearly and go through my day normally, something I cannot do if I am on a medication-free equilibrium programme. I followed her steps to the letter and can report that the results were startling. I was really normal-seeming. (I did have to end my seriously fun and slightly buzzed serotonin enhancement phase about six weeks ago – oh, well, c’est la vie). I have also really enjoyed finding out the details about everyday life, etc. seen through a vague haze. This revolutionary approach is amazing. Make sure you talk to your internist or holistic guru to see if SANE is right for you.

POOG: What is “Sane”?

Dr. Ruiz: After myself facing the chronic problems of everyday life I realized that many of us are dealing with constant symptoms that overwhelm us. Basically, as a culture we aren’t paying attention to basic principles of sanity. I developed the SANE program to help treat these symptoms by addressing their actual cause: life.

When our systems are overwhelmed by life, in the famous words of Chinua Achebe, THINGS FALL APART. Sleep deprivation, dehydration, no time for mediation, eating sporadically, waxing infrequently - all ensue in a mad rush. Forget facials. Simple things, like well-filed nails and coiffed hair. The majority of these symptoms are clearly due to life.

In my new blog: SANE: A Startling Approach, I make my solution available to everyone. The three key strategies are: Spelunk, Sedate and SIP– in that order. When you SPELUNK you are able to remove the psychological barriers to sanity that build up during years of living. Spelunking enables you to dangle in the dark caves of existence, taking you out of the then and placing you firmly in the free-fall of the now. Only then can you SEDATE using a combination of natural elements that I have engineered to emulation neurotransmitters that are only usually released immediately after male orgasm. At this stage you are ready to SIP (Sleep in Place) – detailed in the blog.

POOG: How did you come up with the approach?

Dr. Ruiz: After engineering school, I moved to London to complete my degree in 18th century literature. This radical shift left me 20 pounds thinner, plagued with acne, riddled by doubt and anxiety. No amount of Xanax, yelling-therapy or hot stone massage helped. I tried acupuncture, Vadic rope walking, crushed glass inhalation. Nothing. The diagnosis: Deal with it. I couldn’t and in a creative frenzy I designed what I thought would work for me personally: a reliving of Jules Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth. I only made it as far as the caves when I fell into a deep sleep. It happened so fast, I didn’t know what it meant. And still don’t. I regained my lost weight however, my skin cleared up and my confidence soared. I looked and felt like I was 13. Everyone wanted to know how and now Here We Are. Today the SANE program is part of several practices in London, Paris, LA and Mumbai where I am designing a new, integrated Tantric SANE methodology.

POOG: What are some practical tips for a bit of SANE in day to day life?

Dr. Ruiz: Spelunk, Sedate and Sip whenever possible. No one ever thinks about the manifold opportunities for spelunking in daily life. Just carry a small pack of ropes, hooks, carabineers, and opportunities will reveal themselves. The next time you feel sketchy, nervous, getting ticky - find a cave-like cavern. Then, just move on to SEDATE and SIP. It’s that easy.

Visit my SANE program at where you can join a community of former crazed people around the country and the world who are doing the SANE program in unison and harmony. There, you can share your tips and successes with them and help other get SANE too.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

POOG - Ordinary Greatness

On Monday afternoon, in a serene corner of my garden, Jessica Benchly, a longtime practitioner of unguided meditation, will be discussing the meditative and redemptive qualities of ordinary clothes. I met her purely by accident one day when I'd decided to sell my unwanted clothes on the sidewalk outside of my house. E-Bay came to mind, but in the interest of supporting the local economy, I thought the sidewalk would be better so I set up shop. She walked by and picked up a luscious little pink cashmere sweater trimmed in lavender-hued ostrich feathers. The minute she saw it you could see her eyes glaze over peacefully, the tension flow out of her posture and her breathing become deeper and more enriched. I thought to myself - I want to feel that way. This woman knows something I don't. So I asked. She offered to hold a seminar for me and my friends and Voila! Please come and bring a friend. Make sure you bring as many of your clothes as possible because she is going to demonstrate tantric techniques. See you there!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

DO: My Pooch and Yours

My dog is very old and will die one day. But, for now, he just smells. Years ago we called him Sparticus Effluvius and are reminded of why whenever he wafts by. As a citizen of the planet he is my equal. As a member of my household, he is not. The lovely groomer who comes to cut, wash and dry his hair always has a kind word for him. The other day I shared with her the story of my good friend, M.C., whose ingenious method of stopping her dog from barking at the front door (a good squirt in the face with a (lightly alcohol-laced?) water bottle) is one that I wanted to share with you. It brings her such joy, is such a release, that I thought all women should know about this technique. I am looking for the perfect spray bottle for every room in my house. I found a lovely venetian glass one for the powder room on the first floor yesterday and just thinking about it gave me a sense of calm. Thanks, MC!