53: Jasmine’s Right-On Guide to Life

Note: Psst.This is Jasmine from the future (present?) posting old flip fronts. Okay, bye! Originally sent as an e-mail to my friends/subscribers on February 9, 2001, I’m actually posting this on April 9, 2010.

It’s not like it’s been the worst week of my life, but nothing really exciting has happened to me in a long time. My life is fairly even right now. Neither here nor there, I’ve been coasting along waiting for the next best thing. Celi got asked to dance at a club last weekend by a really hot half Ecuadoran, half Guatemalan guy. And by the time you read this, Kevin will be in South Africa visiting Michael. There is Amy, who quit her job and moved to London to live with her man. And enough due cannot be given Jacinda and Andrea, who both quit their shitty jobs in the last two weeks.

I guess I need to seek my own happiness, start my day by looking in the mirror and reciting my personal mantra. Stef DeLuca says all I need to do is just say “You are so hot!” to my reflection in the mirror. But I don’t know if I can say that without bursting into hysterical giggling fits.

At times like this, the thing to do is take a bath, put on a mud mask, and re-read my Lynda Barry comic strips. Marlys, Lynda’s most famous character, is nine years old, from the wrong side of the tracks, and eternally hopeful that the world will be a better place. I can learn a lot from her. One of the things she does is keep a list of right-on’s, people, places, and things that always cheer her up. So, here are 53 of mine to start.

Jasmine’s List of Right-On’s (in no particular order)

1. baby ducks – no animal is cuter

2. cigarette after dinner – especially yummy if you happen to be smoking a Nat Sherman Hint of Mint

3. Midori Sours – my drink of choice in high school, tastes just like sour apple candy

4. “Degrassi Jr. High” – need I explain this? it’s Canadian television for teenagers, therefore it is perfect

5. tandem bicycles – I’m not terribly steady riding bicycles, so I figure that if I’m going down, I’m bringing someone with me

6. cute boys with glasses – I [heart] nerds

7. Hello Kitty – I think it’s genetic

8. the barley field scene from “A Room with A View” – “For a moment he contemplated her, as one who had fallen out of heaven. He saw radiant joy in her face, he saw the flowers beat against her dress in blue waves. The bushes above them closed. He stepped quickly forward and kissed her.”

9. the episode of “The Simpsons” when Bart sells his soul to Milhouse for $5

10. shepherd’s pie – everything in the world could stand to be covered with hot, steaming mashed potatoes

11. walking home with Maria in the summer, especially the smell from the chocolate factory near the corner of Hubbard and Grand

12. reruns of “Doraemon” – Doraemon is a magical Japanese cartoon kitty robot who has a number of cool futuristic toys in the pocket on his stomach

13. lip balm – cannot have enough; personal favorites are Philosophy’s Kiss Me balm and Kiehl’s #1

14. sandwiches from The French Laundry cafe in Fenton, MI

15. striped socks

16. the ice cream dance Jacinda and I made up – take one step out with your right foot, so that it’s firmly planted in front of you; stick your arms out at 45-degree angles; rock your hips back and forth

17. the sun bears at the Lincoln Park Zoo – they’re so awkward and for this I am eternally grateful

18. bouffants – one day, I too would like to have hair bigger than my head

19. sweet pea flowers

20. Tammy Faye Bakker’s eyelashes – they should have their own tv show

21. “Ashes” by David Sedaris

22. Margaret Cho (“Girl, you can wash your finger at home!”)

23. Elvis! Elvis! Elvis!

24. equality

25. rain – smell, feel, everything (except acid rain, as it’s dangerous)

26. fishnets – especially fleshtone, though they look fetching in just about any color

27. wigs! wigs! wigs!

28. Isabella – I only have one photograph of a loved one on my desk at work, and it is of Isabella eating Easy Cheese off the Midway.

29. the back porch of my last apartment in Hyde Park – many of you have been to this porch, which was big and furnished with second-hand furniture and a wading pool; the big tree in the backyard provided ample shade, thus enabling me, Seema, Jacinda, and Andrea to sit there for hours in the hot summer with our cohorts and various partners in crime

30. cheap cases of Old Style beer – essential to no. 29, was usually on sale at Kimbark Liquor ($7.99 for a 30-can case! woo hoo!)

31. juvenile delinquents

32. garters – somewhat obsolete, like the rotary telephone

33. prosciutto – much more than fancy bacon, it is one of my favorite foods

34. the three freckles i have under my right eye – sure it’s due to sun exposure, but hey.

35. Ralph Stanley – bluegrass singer, has the fantastic ability to make anyone he sings with sound a million times better than they are

36. Chanel nail polish – expensive, but the quality cannot be beat

37. “Don’t start none, won’t be none!”

38. Mary Jo Buttafuoco – I guess we all know who wears the pants in the Buttafuoco household, and it is not Joey

39. being breathless (not to be confused with just plain ol’ being out of breath) – use your imagination here

40. my picture of Jesus and the Virgin Mary that lights up (must be seen to be believed) – Christmas present from Kim, and an excellent conversation piece

41. Goofus

42. Gallant

43. cigarette holders – classy, and collectible (my favorite one is an orange marbled one from Turkey)

44. Steamroller (the game, not the actual machine) – you and as many of your pals as you can find lie on the ground in a straight line(grassy knolls are good; beaches, not so good). pick an end to start from, and whoever is at that end must roll over the others to the other end of the line. once they’ve reached the end, the next person at the starting point does the same. repeat until you are tired from laughing so hard (at which point you retire to your local pancake house) or you are arrested

45. foggy days – not as cool as rainy days, but always a good occasion to put on your raincoat and skulk about in the park looking mysterious

46. surprise birthday parties

47. “They Say It’s Spring” by Blossom Dearie

48. Crazy Eddie – If you’ve ever seen the Crazy Eddie commercials on New York tv in the 80’s, then you know.

49. WCKG’s “Breakfast with the Beatles” on Saturday and Sunday mornings

50. Scrabble – not because I’m especially good at it, but just because I welcome the opportunity to put in obscenities (see http://www.ucls.uchicago.edu/~jdavila/jerk.jpg – in your face, Nadine!)

51. clementines – they’re like oranges or tangerines, but with more sass

52. big hoop earrings – for when you’re rockin’ that Sade look (and I very often am doing just that)

53. bed – my favorite place in the world

Cheers,
Jasmine

One good hurt inflicted by an unworthy but perfectly beautiful man is not the worst thing that can happen to a woman of principle. It taught you about your own weaknesses. It taught you about style. It polished off your rough edges. (Laurie Colwin)

*playlist* (all by Ralph Stanley unless otherwise noted)
I Am A Man Of Constant Sorrow (live); I Never Will Marry (w/ Emmylou Harris); Marilyn Monroe – Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend; Pretty Polly (w/ Patti Loveless); Janet Jackson – When I Think of You; Children Go Where I Send Thee (w/ Ricky Skaggs); Lucinda Williams – I Just Wanted to See You So Bad; Elvis Presley – How Great Thou Art

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