Monthly Archives: February 2011

Death Changes Everyone

Death changes everybody.

It changed me.  I’ll never look at the world the same.  I’ll never look at life the same.

When there are more of us in the ground than on the ground, life is depressing.  I’ve been sleeping for days.  I can’t leave the house.  I want to die too.

How do you get through it?  How do you survive the death of your mother or father or child?  You never really know until it happens to you.  I didn’t.

When my mom was really sick, just the thought of her dying made me ill.  The feelings inside me exploded like a volcano.

And then it happened.  Mommy died.  Mommy died 6 years ago today in her hospital bed with all of us there – and right before she closed her eyes for the last time, she managed to look each and every one of us in the eye to say good-bye.  I love you and I know that you love me too.

At that moment I fell apart.  Completely apart.

Sure, I stayed strong until all that nasty business of burying someone was over.  Going to the funeral parlor, picking a casket, picking clothes, deciding on a stainless vault versus a bronze vault.  Then off to the cemetery to walk around and pick a plot.  I had to pick a plot to bury my mother – and essentially my father – and guess what?  Me too.

We (my father and I) chose a spot on a hill, under a tree because my mom didn’t like the sun.  She hated it.  She loved its warmth but despised its shine.

Now I despise the shine of the gravestone when I visit her.

I miss her so much and often think it would be better if I were dead too.

I know that she was hate that I feel this way but I can’t control it lately.

It doesn’t get any easier as the years go on.

It just gets easier to suppress.

And I am a suppression expert.  But all those repressed feelings have to go somewhere.  Maybe that’s why I am miserable.  Miserable.

This is the one time when my misery doesn’t love company.  I just want to be alone and suffer in peace.

I wonder if I died on the same day that my mother did, if I would have a better chance of seeing her?

I think I might.

© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010


Pet Peeve Saturday

pet peeves for sale - 032208

Image by zarprey via Flickr

Tomorrow will be my mother’s 6 year death anniversary.

So instead of crying and dwelling I decided that I would bitch and moan about some of my pet peeves.

  1. Pet peeve number one:  I hate LLDs.  Left Lane Dicks.  You know the discourteous Richards who ride in the left lane below the speed limit, pass no one and speed up when you try to pass them.
  2. Arrogant assholes with attitudes.
  3. People who pull up to gas pumps with their gas tanks on the wrong side.  A blatant disregard for order and frankly a lack of common courtesy.  I see it more at Costco gas more than anywhere else.
  4. Idiots who pull out in front of you on major highways and cause you to slam on your breaks and dump the entire contents of your purse on the floor or slam into them because they are stupid.
  5. People who don’t believe.

Wow!  I guess I’m peeving about people today.  What’s that all about?

© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010

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Wolfgang Puck’s American Grille – Atlantic City, NJ

Boardwalk in Atlantic City, New Jersey by night

Image via Wikipedia

My husband and I do not gamble but we always manage to spend a mint in Atlantic City on food and drink.  Whether we’re snacking at The Sunroom or enjoying a meal at one of the Borgata‘s fine dining establishments, we always enjoy ourselves and leave very satisfied.

Wolfgang Puck‘s American Grille located in the Borgata Hotel is one my favorites.  The restaurant has 2 menus:  The Tavern and The Main Dining Room.  Both are fabulous but we tend to eat in the more casual Tavern area.  To start, try the Truffled Potato Chips with Maytag Blue, the Creamy Clam Chowder or the Spicy Tuna Tartare (my fave).  My favorite entrée is the Pork Wienerschnitzel with Warm Potato Salad, Arugula and Pumpkin Seed Oil.  I’m never disappointed.

I also like the Grilled Rib Eye Steak with Peppercorn Sauce, Bleu Cheese Hollandaise or the Almond Crusted Salmon with Horseradish-Potato Purée and Red Wine Reduction.

If you’re eating in the main dining room start with the Agnolotti Pasta with Five Cheese Filling and as a main course try the BRAISED KUROBUTA PORK OSSO BUCO WITH SWEET PEPPER ROMESCO (and I’m not a fan of goat).

I prefer the Tavern menu but the food is good and the service, excellent. Although I thought our server was a little pushy on Monday.

So next time you’re in AC, check out Wolfgang Puck’s American Grille.  It will not disappoint.

© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010

Check out my other Atlantic City blogs:© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010

The Sunroom at The Water Club – Atlantic City, NJ

The Sunroom
1 Renaissance Way
Atlantic City, NJ 08401-6001
(609) 317-8888

The Water Club in Atlantic City is one of my favorite venues.  Even when I just pop down for the day, I love hitting the Sunroom for some drinks and pickies.

The atmosphere is relaxing and the staff is very accommodating.

Some of my favorites are the Tuscan Style Platter, complete with pecorino | salumi | olives | ricotta | sundried tomatoes grilled bread, the Artisnal Cheese Board loaded with soft and dry-aged cheeses | assorted breads and fruits | condiments and the Mediterranean Platter  served with hummus | baba ganoush | olives | tabouleh | grilled pita.

My favorite cocktails are the banana cafejito | malibu tropical banana | kahlua mocha | fresh lime | mint and the mangorita | absolut mango | house made sour | canton de ginger.  Although I must say that sometimes the drinks are not always consistent.  I had to send a back a few – maybe it was just a bad day.

So if you’re ever in Atlantic City, stop on over to the Sunroom in the Water Club.  It’s a great place to relax and hang out.

© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010

Check out my review of the Water Club below:


Pork Roll, Egg & Cheese: A New Jersey Wonder

Whether you are from North, Central or South Jersey, Pork Roll, Egg & Cheese (or Taylor Ham for the northern part of the state) is the ultimate Jersey breakfast and late-night diner sandwich.

If you’re from North Jersey, you call it Taylor Ham, Egg & Cheese and if you’re from the Jersey Shore on down, it becomes Pork Roll, Egg & Cheese.  I’m not really sure what the Central Jersey peeps do.

From what I hear it’s almost impossible to get outside of the tri-state area – what will I do if I ever move?  It’s a heart attack on a plate that I prefer to enjoy (no matter the time of day) with a side of french fries and brown gravy (on the side, of course).

This morning was no exception.  I can’t figure out why I would snarf such a giant calorie fest when I have to put on a bikini in a little while.  I guess I’m just a masochist or a Jersey Girl – probably a little of both.  The extra side of sausage was just an unnecessary evil but I couldn’t resist – I’ll be stuffed until dinner.

Pork Roll, Egg & Cheese even tastes great at 4 am after a serious night of clubbing and drinking.  It takes the drunk edge off but can sometimes drive you to the porcelain god if you’re not careful.

I tried to make it at home many times but it NEVER tastes as good as the diner’s.  Maybe it’s the melted yellow, American cheese or maybe it’s the greasy griddle that it’s cooked on.  I don’t know but it’s one of my go-to food splurges.

If you’ve never indulged in this Jersey wonder, I recommend you do so as soon as possible.  It’s a little taste of Jersey that will probably stay with you all day!

What do you think?

Picture Courtesy of

© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010.


Behind The Boobage: A Re-blog

saline filled breast implants

Image via Wikipedia

Many of you know about my obsession with boobs for various reasons:  My mom had breast cancer for 28 years and it finally caught up with her 6 years ago.

So many people have suffered from this disease and have survived as well.  So anytime I hear anything about boobs, my ears perk up and I am immediately interested.  Please know that I have nothing against breast implants if performed safely by board certified surgeons.

This was a post I wrote in 2010.

Today I was watching the news and was surprised to learn that there is yet another way to fix your boobs.  It’s called the “Internal Bra”.  You wear it on the inside of your breasts and it’s supposed prevent your mammaries from sagging at an accelerated rate.

What will they think of next?  I always had small boobs – a 34 B – until I got fat.  That’s where mine came from.  Even after losing the weight, I still have a nice set.  I’m puzzled that society has led women along this unreachable path of perfection.  Look at the ads.  Look at Hollywood.  It’s almost impossible to keep up with the Annistons – and Joan Rivers – well she scares me.

Getting back to the boobs, I decided to research the history of implants and was shocked by my findings.  In 1890 the first surgical breast augmentation was performed with paraffin injections.  Tell me if I’m wrong, but I thought paraffin was a flammable wax substance used in manicures.  Damn!  If I had paraffin in my breasts I would be careful about standing too close to the stove or fireplace.

When paraffin didn’t work the doctors inserted glass and ivory balls.  These balls caused so many infections that they became obsolete.  Can you imagine having glass balls in your boobs?  I couldn’t.  Could you even lay on your stomach?  Mammograms would be a no-no.

In 1920 the plastic surgeons tried fat implants.  They stole fat from your ass and stomach and stuck it up top.  In the 1940’s they decided that since women’s bodies absorbed that fat, that this was no longer a viable method.

In 1950’s America, polyvinyl sponges were implanted.  I’ve seen sponges but never thought about inserting one into my breast.  These sponges shrunk (shrinkage) and became the link between breast surgery and breast cancer.

In the 1960’s Silicone came into play through injections directly into the breast.  Because of chronic inflammation, infection and lumps, this quickly fell out of favor but was reintroduced in the form of an implant in 1961 and by 1982 they were taken off the market due to ruptures, leakage and health issues cause by the leaking Silicone.

In 1992 Saline implants entered the scene.  I guess it’s like wearing a water bra on the inside.  In 1995 Soybean Oil Implants were introduced outside of the US which became toxic in the body and also had the potential to go rancid just like any other oil in your kitchen.

In 2001 the Brava Breast Enhancement and Shaping System was introduced.  This was a bra-like device surrounded with silicone that cryovacs your boobs and causes them to grow a cup size after wearing the bra for at least 10 hours a day.  Needless to say, this did not work.

In 2006 a gummy bear like Silicone was re-introduced into the US market.  Why try Silicone again?  They’re just asking for trouble.

Then comes the Laser Bra for enhancements and reductions.  This surgery is like wearing a built-in push-up bra.  A CO2 laser is used to create a smaller, perkier breast.

Recently Breform placed beneath the skin (aka The Internal Bra) seems to be all the rage.

So I want to get this straight.  I want reiterate what women do to stop the “sagging” process.  We’ve injected flammable wax, ass fat and Silicone.  We’ve inserted glass, ivory, sponge, Silicone, rancid oil, salt water and now polyester.  We’ve shrink-wrapped, lasered, lifted and removed tissue.  The doctors have cut skin and repositioned nipples all in the quest for eternal beauty.

Now I’m not saying that I would never have it done because I’m quite vain and seeing my mom without breasts and her not giving a shit because she was who she was and she always said that boobs didn’t make the woman… and she was right.  I wish I could be that strong.

In the meantime I’ll keep wearing my push up, cleavage forming grapefruit holders until I might someday weaken and become a plastic surgery statistic.  I’ll also fight off injecting Botulism and other toxins into my face and body until once day I might succumb to society’s pressure and the quest for the Fountain of Youth.

© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010

I Have A Heart On For You

Saint Valentine’s Day is always so commercial.  I plead with my husband NOT to buy me roses but he always does.  This year I finally got through to him… he bought me some great flowers anyway.

My mom will be gone six years now and I miss her little Valentine’s Day presents she used to give me every year.  I miss my Easter baskets too!

In any case, here are my heart ons and where I have them (I can have them anywhere)…  Glad I can post them in public!

I hope you enjoyed your Valentine’s Day!

On The Floor

On My Feet

In My Hand

On The Dresser

In The Bathroom


© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010

Seville, Spain: Warm All The Way Around

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It’s a shame that I didn’t have a better camera back in the day when I was living in Europe.

Sevilla, Spain was one on my favorite destinations.  The people are warm, the weather is warm and the nightlife is HOT!

My 3-day stay in Sevilla for spring break turned into a more than 2 week stay.  I had a blast!

Courtyard within the Cathedral - Sevilla

Alcazar - Sevilla

Sevilla, Spain


If you ever have the opportunity to visit Sevilla, you will not be sorry.  The giant Cathedral in the city is lined with orange trees and horse and carriages.  It’s worth the climb to the top for the panoramic views.

© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010

The Remnants of Superbowl Sunday

The only thing I got out of Superbowl Sunday was a fatter ass and a bigger belly.

I’m still eating ribs, wings, subs and other shit food replete with a fat content to make you gain weight in a matter of hours.  I wanted to start my diet (for lack of a better word – really a lifestyle change) on Monday but to my chagrin I have all this grub that I feel guilty about throwing away.

There are starving people, you know.

I always feel like it’s a sin to waste food.  My parents never forced me to clear my plate but I still cringe at the thought of tossing perfectly good chow to the rats at the garbage dump.

So I eat it until I’m sick of it.  Frankly, I throw out more than I should.

Tonight I ate leftover Rigatoni Vodka.  What did this year’s Superbowl leave you with?  Do tell….

© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010

Image: Idea go /

Taking It To The Street

If you have ever been to Paris, you know that it is one of the most beautiful (if not the most) cities in the entire world.

Everywhere you look , there is beauty, architecture, art.

Street art is no exception.

Un Arbre Au Bord de la Seine

Au Marais

Jardin Tino Rossi

Jardin Tino Rossi

Stravinsky Fountain - Beaubourg

Gyros on rue St.-Sévérin - My Favorite "Street Art"

Au Jardin du Luxembourg

Au Jardin du Luxembourg

In a Gallery

© 2011 J. H-M and CultureChoc2010