The End of a Helluva Week! Time To CHILLAX!

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After a week of war mongering, political posturing, death, destruction, work overload and all around joy killing discourse, I’m glad this week is O-V-E-R! Many of us have high pressure careers and stressful lives and by Thursday, we’re seriously on life support with one foot in the grave and the other one on skates. Come Friday…we’re done!  I don’t know about you, but I need a drink.

I’m tired, I’m drained, my brain is fried and all I need now is just to cut the air up full blast (in these parts, we have a freaky heat wave sucking all of your energy and oxygen after having a pleasant summer…wouldn’t you know it), a nice cool bath, some sexy music in the background and the cap popped off the bubbly; just allowing the madness to completely drain out of my body. Good times!

I hope all of my little Scoodie-oops out in the blogosphere will find your calming piece of the world and have a CHILL weekend with whomever or whatever you have in your life that brings you joy. Until next time, CHEERS!

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Memorial Day

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Memorial day is a time to pause, reflect and remember those brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice to secure our freedoms.

They are our true heroes and heroines – we will never forget you. And to our military personnel still serving, you are loved, cherished and respected. May your journey be safe and come home to us soon.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE!

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Happy International Women’s Day!

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Today is a day to celebrate women. Women who have fought the good fight for fairness and equality for women and young girls globally. Though we have made great strides in education as well as our professional and personal lives, there’s still a long way for us to go. In the US alone, women earn about 77% of men’s salaries in 2011 compared to 77.4 % in 2010. We’ve actually lost ground in some sectors.

Over two-thirds of women in the world—up to 76 percent in some countries—have been targeted for sexual and/or physical abuse at some point in their lives, according to United Nations statistics on women. Yet we had members of Congress fighting tooth and nail to not reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act,  legislation that would make it easier to prosecute crimes against women, including domestic violence, sexual assault and trafficking. The bill also extends protections to gays and lesbians and women of Native American tribal lands who are attacked or abused by non-tribal residents.

We also have another all out assault on women’s reproductive rights where some Senators, Congressmen and Governors feel that they have a “moral imperative” to legislate a woman’s body as if we’re not intelligent enough to make informed decisions. Trying to stop contraceptives from being covered under our work insurance but Viagra and other erectile dysfunction medications for men, are completely acceptable. However, they should stop saying they’re pro-life when in actuality they’re pro-fetus. This legislation has nothing to do with anything other than men trying to dictate our actions.  And laws of this nature will disproportionately affect rural and impoverishment women because they won’t be able to seek abortions out of the states with these Draconian laws as those who are wealthier. Thus causing more children to be abandoned, abused, thrown into a system that is painfully outdated and flawed and so goes the cycle of poverty for the children and their mothers.

Rape and honor killings are at a fever pitch in countries like India and throughout the Middle East and those women are in danger just running errands or going to the movies. Africa is one of the biggest shames of them all, because some African women in particularly dangerous regions, are serially raped on a daily basis. They are impregnated, infected with STD’s including HIV/AIDS, maimed and genitally mutilated.

Yes, this is a day to embrace our triumphs and acknowledge our struggles, but under no circumstances should we ever be lulled into a false sense of security that we’ve finally arrived. We must still keep up the offensive not only for ourselves but women all over the world. We should not rest until every woman and little girl has the same opportunities as men and boys. Gender should NEVER be an obstacle to success and happiness.

Peace, love and blessings to all of you…until next year, Besos!

One of My Favorite Quotes…

So we’ve all made it to the end of another work week or as a friend calls it “that’s life week”. Maybe the week was a breeze and maybe it wasn’t, but as with anything else in life, there’s pretty much always another shot to make it better. If you can, at the end of the day, file this week in the “been there…done that” then enjoy your weekend.

We can make the choice to either drown in our own self-pity or get our ass up and find a way to make our lives into what we want it to be. Is it hard…sometimes, will there always be a support system there to help you through it…not always, will there possibly be people in your life attempting to bring the drama, pain and negativity…Hell yes!.  But if you want something bad enough, then go for it and try to make it happen. Even if you think you’ve failed, at least you tried and that’s not a failure at all.

I firmly believe there’s always a solution to a problem,  however, you MUST have the patience, drive, focus and tenacity to find it…hang on that shit like a guard dog locked on a criminal’s neck.  I’ve said my piece and now I’m outta here…see ya!

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True Dat! Funny Analogy of Life….

Here’s a good one and I’m sure most of us would agree!

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My Niece/God-Daughter in Times Square

This weekend was the Covenant Service for my niece/god-daughter Mallory. She was given her Hebrew name of Michaela, named for my sister-in-law’s mother Michele. As a surprise for my brother and sister-in-law, I wished Mallory a “Happy Baby Naming” in Times Square – New York.

My girl looks beautiful, appearing on the jumbo screen at the ‘crossroads of the world”. Whoo…Hoo!

The 99 Cent Store Wants to Invade the 1%-er’s Playground

This cracks me up! The residents of Beverly Hills and surrounding affluent neighborhoods, are the same people who have tried endlessly to stop the subway to the sea because they’re afraid that the “wrong people” will invade their bastion of wealth and entitlement, though they won’t publicly admit it. Now the 99 Cent Store wants to further encroach on the mecca of conspicuous consumption by opening a store on Rodeo Drive…my how times have changed. For some strange reason, I’m pulling for the 99 Cent Store. I would love to see the faces of the old money elite shivering in their designer duds when they see different people, not of the Beverly Hills/Bel Air set, marching proudly into the store, feeling that a store they’re familiar with, is reason enough to take a trip to Rodeo Drive. If this comes to fruition, I too will drive down there and do my shopping right beside all the other working class people rubbing the wealthy’s noses in the mere fact of us being there. Sorry 1%-ers, it just may be open season on your playground.

Dollar Store Seeks to Rub Elbows on Rodeo Drive

If your Rodeo Drive shopping stops include Versace, Armani, Chanel and Tiffany & Co., perhaps you’d be interested in a store where you could drop a real bundle, of $1 bills that is.

The 99 Cents Only Stores chain announced that it’s searching for a retail space on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, Calif., one of the toniest shopping strips in the world.

“We think our store will do well. Our highest amounts of sales are happening in our branch on Wilshire Boulevard. We know for a fact a lot of customers there are coming from Beverly Hills. This store will be here to stay. The major reason for its success will be the challenging economy which came as the final impetus to open the store,” Eric Schiffer, The 99 Cents Only Store CEO, told ABC News.

The 99 Cents Only Store is confident that opening on Rodeo Drive be a winning move. “We’ve had many success stories that are similar to this scenario. After we opened our store in West Hollywood on West Lincoln Boulevard, a Whole Foods came right next to us. As soon as it did, our business went up dramatically,” he said.

“Oh my God! How will it work in the middle of all the fancy-shmantsy?” Beverly Hills resident since 1977 Ann Garry told ABC News when she heard the news.

“If there’s a 99 Cent Only Store on Rodeo Drive, I will definitely shop there. I wouldn’t dream of shopping on Rodeo Drive. Instead of just looking at the windows I can now shop there,” said Garry.

Mikael Choukroun, manager of 208 Rodeo restaurant located on the Rodeo Drive, he is concerned about the street losing its high-class identity.

“Hearing news of The 99 Cents Store opening is very disappointing. I worked for 20 years at Les Champs Elysees [in Paris] and I have seen what such stores have done to it. After McDonalds and similar places opened many of the high-end brands left Les Champs Elysees and it’s now full of cheap stores. I can see this happening to Rodeo Drive if they start opening such stores,” said Choukroun.

Making ends meet as far as rent will be a challenging task, said Schiffer. “We’re hoping to find a landlord who will understand that with opening such a store we will increase traffic on Rodeo Drive, which has been slow due to the bad economy,” said Schiffer.

“By putting our news release out on Tuesday we hope to attract the interest of landlords and perhaps cut the middle-man process, and by that, cut some extra costs,” he said.

The store hopes to appeal to locals and to tourists. “Shops on Rodeo make most of their sales from tourists. When tourists get their basic needs from our store, as opposed to paying a lot more for the same items at their hotels, they will have saved enough to shop on Rodeo,” said Schiffer.

The 99 Cent Stores operates 303 outlets in California, Texas, Arizona, and  Nevada. “We were the first store to sell in 99 cent or a buck items. We are an LA iconic business. We started in LA 30 years ago and grew to 300 stores and we want it to be the home of our flagship store… the city where we started.  Also, what’s wrong with having an exception, and we would be that exception,” said Schiffer.