This applies to Californians too, not just to the British!

When Cath Lawson posted this Facebook status, I smiled:

“I love working with Americans. They don’t mind paying well for top quality work. They pay on time. They’re always thankful and appreciative. And they give you lots of great follow up work.”

I agree with Cath. Coming from the tough, will-negotiate-every-dollar Israeli business culture, the American business culture wasn’t difficult to get used to. I love living here, I love doing business here, and the more I’m here, the more difficult it becomes to deal with more aggressive cultures.

However, here in the West Coast, it sometimes feels as if people have taken this cool politeness to an extreme. In fact, West Coast folks are extremely difficult to read. It took me years to realize that the following sentences could in fact have a completely different meaning than the words said by the person:

They say: “We HAVE to get together soon!”
They mean: “Goodbye! I hope I never see you again.”

They say: “Have a nice day!”
They mean: “Get lost.”

They say: “Call me!”
They mean: “I’ll totally screen your call, but feel free to call me anytime.”

They say: “Hi! How ARE you today?”
They mean: “I couldn’t care less how you’re doing, but I was taught to ask.”

They say: “I’m doing well, thanks!”
They mean: “I have a huge headache and terrible stress at work, but proper etiquette says I shouldn’t discuss those unless we’re close friends.”

They say: “We should REALLY schedule a play date for the kids!”
They mean: “Keep your brat away from my kids.”

It’s not that all interactions are like this, of course. If we’re friends, we WILL be honest with each other. But with strangers and with acquaintances, communication happens on an extremely shallow level, emotionally. This emotional detachment certainly makes life more pleasant – most will agree that getting a “have a nice day” is better than “get lost,” even if the person means “get lost.” But if you’re new to California, it might take you a while to decode this unwritten code. It took me almost ten years.:)

cleavage 1Photo by savaman

This is a short post. It’s not really a blog post I guess, but a photo essay followed by a multiple choice test.

The topic of showing cleavage came up when I was watching the Golden Globes, where many of the actresses were showing serious cleavage, and Mariah Carey especially showed so much cleavage that it was difficult to concentrate on anything other than her big, shiny boobs.

Over dinner with friends the following night, the discussion heated up when a few of us felt that showing cleavage was unnecessary and tacky, others felt that it was completely legit (the “if you’ve got it flaunt it” school of thought) and yet others were fairly neutral, saying that showing cleavage can be either tasteful and elegant (if you’re not showing too much and if you’re not too old and wrinkly), or it could be disastrous (if half your boobs are out there and/ or if you’re decolletage has known better days).

A few photos to give you a general idea of how regular, non-celebrity women are choosing to show cleavage:

Cleavage 2Photo by Michael Lehet

Cleavage 3Photo by brianschulman

Cleavage 4Photo by streetguy

And now to the test. It has a single question and six possible answers.

How do you feel about showing cleavage?

a. It’s a fashion Don’t, of course. Showing cleavage is always slutty, tacky and totally unnecessary.
b. It depends. If you’re fairly young and you don’t show too much, it can look great.
c. Hey, if you’ve got it, flaunt it! And anyone that says otherwise is simply jealous.
d. You call yourself a feminist? Breasts are perfectly natural. There’s no reason to hide them or to fuss about them.
e. Definitely a faux pas. Showing boobs is not a feminist act but rather a cheap attempt at using one’s body for getting male attention.
f. It’s fine, except for the office. I don’t want to see anyone’s cleavage/ chest, regardless of their gender and of how fabulous they look, when I’m trying to get work done.

How do YOU feel about showing cleavage?

The Federal Trade Commission Act of 1914 established truth in advertising law. It says that advertising must be truthful and non-deceptive, and advertisers must have evidence to back up their claims.

An ad is considered deceptive if it contains a statement, or omits information, that is likely to mislead consumers acting reasonably under the circumstances.

Obviously, there are many gray areas when it comes to truth in advertising. The following ads, from as early as the 1920s and from as late as the 1970s, demonstrate it well:


1. Pepsi Cola is wholesome and light

vintage-pepsi-adImage credit: Miss Retro Modern

“Today’s delicious, pure Pepsi Cola – the wholesome, light refreshment.”


2. This inflatable doll looks just like a real woman

inflatable-dollImage credit: jbcurio

“Just add air. Life like in every detail…just add air and instantly I become a 5’4” beauty who wears size 8 clothes… take me to a party, boating or swimming (I float).” 1970.


3. This gentle exercise routine will enlarge your breasts

vintage-exercise-adImage credit: Uh.. Bob

“Now, through the famous Swedish method of gentle exercise that doctors recommend, you can develop the beautiful form that you desire. Yes, just 10 minutes a day of this scientific development based on modern up-to-date principles allows you to put weight on where you wish – take weight off where you don’t want it.”


4. My special garments dissolves fat by perspiring

reduce-your-fleshImage credit: jbcurio

“The entire body, or any part, can be reduced without dieting by dissolving the fat through perspiration produced by wearing my garments.” 1923.


5. Canned spaghetti is a “wonderful eating”

heinz-vintage-adImage credit: jbcurio

“An easy to fix, money-saving dish that’s truly wonderful eating.”


6. Corn syrup on toast for breakfast is yummy and energizing

corn-syrup-vintage-adImage credit: Miss Retro Modern

“Top off your toast with ENERGY. Bee Hive for breakfast gives you two big benefits… a refreshing taste of delicious flavor and plenty of instant energy.”


7. Sugar can help you keep your weight down

sugar-ad-1Image credit: Miss Retro Modern

“Sugar keep your energy up and your appetite down. Sugar: only 18 calories per spoon, and it’s all energy.”


8. My nose shaper will fix your nose without surgery

nose-shaper1Image credit: jbcurio

“My new nose-shaper corrects ill-shaped noses without operation, quickly, safely and permanently.” 1916.

Apparently, “truth in advertising” often means “stretching the truth to its limits.”

Weird Ads

by MomGrind

When I was younger, I wanted to be many things. One of them: an ad executive. I ended up being a lawyer (and hating it), then a blogger for hire. I’m not sure if I should regret the career I never had in advertising, though. Being creative under crazy deadlines and constant pressure is tough.

Judging from the following weird ads, sometimes it’s so tough, that the results are, to put it mildly, bizarre.


1. Scotch Hair Set Tape

Image credit: sugarpie honeycomb. 1970.


2. Hair Dryer For The Bald

Image credit: sugarpie honeybunch. 1972.


3. Physical Violence Is A Great Way To Sell Cigarettes

cigarette-adImage credit: jbcurio. 1975.


4. Bewitched Hairspray

Image Credit: sugarpie honeybunch. 1965.


5. This kid scares the hell out of me

ginger-ale-adImage credit: bayswater97. 1930s.


6. Is That His Mom? She Scares Me Too

meat-adImage credit: Marcoa84


7. Baby-Approved Cigarettes

cigarette-ad-with-baby1Image credit: bayswater97


8. Eat Eat EAT! And Always Stay Thin With jar-packed sanitized tape worms

tape-worms-adImage credit: 1vintage1


9. This Ad Is Especially Appetizing

Image credit: sixtiesbooks


10. Drink Your Yeast! Yum

drink-your-yeastImage credit: Sugarpie Honeybunch

Good Looking People

by MomGrind

Apparently, some good looking people are only willing to date other good looking people.


You’ve got to see this: a website,, with the highly intelligent tagline “a good looking people community,” where you can search for people based solely on how they look.

Because obviously looks are the most important thing in a person, and if you’re good-looking, there’s no way you’d want to date someone who’s not.

One of the site’s most useful features is a tool that allows you to search for people based on how others have rated their looks. Ratings include: “stunning,” “good looking,” “looks nice,” “looks OK,” “not much,” “ugly,” and “horrifying.” Yes, there are a couple of people in the “horrifying” category.

Thankfully, it looks like the site is not doing too well in terms of traffic. Maybe people are not THAT shallow after all.

Comment of the day: “At least they’re all in one place, kinda like a zoo.” Writer Dad.

Creepy Costumes

by MomGrind

chucky-costumePhoto credit: Jesse
Creepy costumes for Halloween: it took me some time to figure out how she did this Chucky costume – at first I thought it was photoshopped – but then I realized she’s closing her eyes and the fake eyes were painted on her closed lids.

horse-costumePhoto credit: Ben Alman
The head looks a little too real, especially at first glance.

face-maskPhoto credit: Jared Zimmerman
There’s something creepy about those eyes and about the combination of a real face and a mask that looks almost real.

jeeves-costumePhoto credit: piperkinsvater
This is perhaps cheating, because it’s actually a mannequin, but it’s so CREEPY, I had to include it here.

creepy-costume1Photo credit: Brent and Marilynn
A creepy costume!

creepy-costume2Photo credit: Jacob Barss-Bailey
Not the creepiest but a little strange and definitely very original.

dog-costumePhoto credit: mattbatt
This one actually makes me a little sad for the dog.

teethPhoto credit: Ben Brown
Despite being photoshopped, this one is awesome – and creepy.

My little girls? Princesses, of course.

Happy Halloween. 🙂

weird-hairPhoto credit: dogseat

1950s: Beehive Hair

Beehive hair first showed up in the late 50s and continued to be popular during the 60s. It was quite elaborate and required A LOT of hairspray.

Photo credit: Banlon1964

Early 1960s: Big, Stiff, Very “Done” Hair

Can you imagine running your fingers through THAT?

sixties-hairPhoto credit: Dr. Monkey

1970s: The Farrah Fawcett Flip, or Feathered Hair

This style was weird-looking even when it framed Farrah’s beautiful face. It was even more difficult to pull off for ordinary women.

farrah-fawcett-flipPhoto credit: watsonsinelgin

There was a male version too:
feathered-hairPhoto credit: DCvision2006

1970s – 1980s: Tight Perm, A.K.A Poodle Perm

This is more than a tight perm – it’s a tight perm cut in mullet style. Funny hairstyle indeed.

tight-permPhoto credit: La Belle Province

1980s: Big Hair

The eighties were all about power dressing, big shoulders, lots of jewelry and of course BIG hair. You will likely need a combination of hair mousse, hair gel and hairspray to recreate this lovely look.

eighties-hairPhoto credit: ninjapoodles

1970s-1990s: Mullet

A Mullet is a hairstyle that is short in the front, top, and sides, but long in the back. This hairstyle was popular from the early 1970s to the early 1990s.

Photo credit: FatMandy

1980s: Mohawk

The Mohawk is a hairstyle which consists of shaving both sides of the head, leaving a strip of noticeably longer hair in the middle. Mohawks became common in youth punk subcultures in the early 1980s, then gradually spread to mainstream fashion. The hair in the middle is often elaborately shaped:

Photo credit: Ethan Woods

Or colored:

Photo credit: Malingering

Timeless: The Combover

This is my favorite funny hairstyle. A combover is worn by bald or balding men in which the hair on one side of the head is grown long and then combed over the bald area to minimize the display of baldness.

Donald Trump has made this hairstyle famous:

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

But lots of non-billionaire men sport this hairstyle too:

Photo credit: