Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

K-Ville premiers tonight

Notice today from Amazon:

we thought you’d like to know that K-Ville, the new crime action series starring Anthony Anderson and Cole Hauser, premieres Tonight at 9/8c on FOX.

From writer and executive producer Jonathan Lisco (NYPD Blue, The District) comes K-Ville, a new police drama set and filmed in New Orleans. Marlin Boulet (Anthony Anderson) is a brash veteran of the NOPD’s Felony Action Squad, the specialized unit that targets the most-wanted criminals. He also held his post during Hurricane Katrina, spending days in the water saving lives and keeping order, even after his partner deserted him. Boulet’s new partner, Trevor Cobb (Cole Hauser), was a soldier in Afghanistan before joining the NOPD. Though committed to his new job, he’s less than comfortable with Boulet’s methods – and is harboring a dark secret.

Here is the official website:


I don’t know how to get these things and it just isn’t that important to me, but you tech-savvy people might have some fun with this. And it IS New Orleans! The music is worth a visit, just to view “Anthony gives Cole some advice about gumbo.” 😉

September 17, 2007 Posted by | Adventure, Bureaucracy, Crime, Cross Cultural, Detective/Mystery, Entertainment, Social Issues | 5 Comments

Mosque 1, Crane 0

This is a photo for Little Diamond/Dr. Diamond who was with me coming back from Al Kout, in Fehaheel, when we saw one of the funniest things I have ever seen.

An old mosque along the side of Gulf Road was being torn down for renovations. A crane had been hired to knock down the old minaret, but as it swung the wrecking ball to hit the minaret, the ball somehow tangled or something, and the crane fell over. It stayed there for quite a while as they figured out what to do next. I wish I had a photo. We always called it Mosque 1, Crane 0.

So Little Diamond, this is for you, a photo of the new minarets going up in place of the one that bravely beat the first crane:


September 17, 2007 Posted by | Building, Community, Events, ExPat Life, Kuwait, Lumix, Photos | 7 Comments

“Something More Serious”

I remember clearly the first time I ever felt old.

I had discovered a Lancome product, Renergie, that I loved. I have always been good at trying to keep my face “moisturized,” and had graduated up to Lancome from good old Oil of Olay. We were living in Germany once more, our son was about eight years old, and I think they formulate Oil of Olay differently for different customer bases; the smell was different in Germany (and even more different in Qatar! I think it has a sort of cumin undertone!) but I had found this Renergie stuff that glided on and smelled good and wasn’t oily or sticky, so I liked it. It was expensive, but we had a little more money now and I felt it was a splurge.

My Renergie was running out; I needed a replacement. I happened to stop by the Lancome counter at a time when there was a Lancome representative there who asked what I needed. I told her I was looking for the Renergie that I loved.

Simple question, right?

The Lancome representive stops, and looks at me closely. There is this long, uncomfortable pause as she continues to look at me. I’m frankly annoyed.

“My dear,” she starts, “You need something more serious.”

Something more serious? I’m thirty-five years old! I have not yet got any wrinkles to speak of! My skin is in great shape!

All these thoughts rush into my head as the saleslady continues to look at me seriously, and to move toward some heavier creams, which I HATE. I’m still dealing with that one word – “serious.”

I need something “serious.”

It was so devastating to me that my reaction was almost physical revulsion. I think my legs went week and shakey. Looking back, I suspect that it is part of a sales pitch, a script devised to move the customer up the scale to more and more expensive products. I think I even sensed it then, but the truth is, when someone says something like that to you, it damages a vanity that you didn’t even know you had.

I don’t think I bought anything that day. I think I stumbled out of the store and went to pick up my son from his karate lesson and sneaked back at a time when there was no Lancome lady there and bought what I really wanted – the Renergie.

But the damage had been done. Now, when I put the cream on my face I was looking in the mirror for whatever the saleslady had seen that indicated I needed something more “serious.”

It wasn’t long before I humbled myself and went back and asked what the representative thought I really needed, and we agreed on the light form – the lotion – which also went on nicely and smelled good, because how it smells really matters to me. I don’t care how good it is; if it doesn’t smell good – to me – I can’t wear it.

She moved me up to Primordiale, which I wore for years until the next Lancome representative looked at me and said brightly “I bet you would love Absolue! It will get rid of those little crow’s feet in no time!”

We all have weak spots that we don’t even know we have. If you are a man and you have read this far, you will laugh in your superior way, thinking this is just a piece of fluff. To you I say wait until your son beats you in those family wrestling matches for the first time, beats you fairly. When our son would wrestle with his Dad, I would say “I hear the antlers clanging in the forest!” as they fought for who would be the king. To you I say that the sad day will come when you are no longer the biggest bull moose in the forest, and you, too, will have that sad, humbled feeling I got when I was told I needed something more “serious.”

The advertisers of this world know our weaknesses. I am willing to bet the Lancome ladies have a script they use, to press our buttons, to expose weaknesses we don’t even know we have. My husband brings home a Men’s Health occasionally – have you ever noticed, every one of them is the same? There are articles about making your abs flat, taking vitamins and reviving your sex life – in every issue! They know where we feel bad about ourselves before we even know it, and they are making a lot of money off of our inadequacies!

And no, my friends, I don’t have any answers. Even while I know that these things are the vain, inconsequential things of this world, even while I know that this is all passing vanity, even while I try to resist, I succumb. Sometimes the temptations is too great and my spirit is too weak to stand up to their insistence that I need something “more serious.” This blog entry is merely my meager attempt to fight back.

September 17, 2007 Posted by | Biography, Bureaucracy, Communication, Cultural, Customer Service, ExPat Life, Family Issues, Germany, Humor, Random Musings, Shopping, Women's Issues | 10 Comments