After a Fashion

There's trouble in Nick & Jessica's paradise, and who are the Butthole Sniffers?!

Our model today is Patsy. Patsy is wearing a warm, tweedy, Chanel-ish snarf by 4t5 Dogs, along with her stylish Barking Heads: Stop Making Scents T-shirt, also by 4t5 Dogs. The ensemble shows that Patsy is a strong, modern woman, unafraid to speak her mind and assert her independence, and that's what today's fashion is all about.
Our model today is Patsy. Patsy is wearing a warm, tweedy, Chanel-ish "snarf" by 4t5 Dogs, along with her stylish Barking Heads: Stop Making Scents T-shirt, also by 4t5 Dogs. The ensemble shows that Patsy is a strong, modern woman, unafraid to speak her mind and assert her independence, and that's what today's fashion is all about.

TROUBLE IN PARADISE It's true … really, truly true. Nick & Jessica are getting a divorce. Really. For good. No more speculation. Daisy Duke and her former boy-bander are kaput. Fini. It must be awful for two famous people to try to keep their love alive amidst the glare of the public spotlight – two young, fun-loving kids deeply in love with themselves. I mean, each other. You know what I mean. But at least they had three blissful years together as his career plummeted and her bosoms ascended. Why, it seems like just yesterday when the stringer for People magazine wrote and asked me if I knew anything about the "superstar wedding" that was going to take place in Austin. We all gasped knowing it must be Sandra Bullock's … but no. The stringer wrote me back, "Just thought you'd like to know that it's Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey's wedding." Who and who? It was the first time I'd heard of them. But not the last. Soon, Jessica and her simian hairline dominated the tabloids, and immediately there was talk of divorce. But Jessica's creepy father, who can't seem to think about anything but his daughter's pneumatic double-D breasts, denied it all and said the two kids were as happy as can be … in spite of the rumors of strip clubs, on-set affairs, and off-set fighting. But now? Now we know it's all true. Another star-crossed love affair bites the bust. I mean, dust. You know what I mean.

A CHANGE OF HABIT I happened to be at Hobby Lobby and saw the 5-gallon donation jars for the Salvation Army; I automatically reached in my pocket to give them change, as I'd done for years. But with the money in my hand, about to clatter into the jar, I stopped. Something was different this year. I know the Salvation Army is a "faith-based" organization. (Don't you love the way this new phrase softens the actual meaning of "religious fanaticism"?). I'd always known the Salvation Army was "faith-based," but it never bothered me before. But this year, despite the many great experiences I've had at local SA stores (especially the great help at the South Lamar location) anything that is "faith-based" seems to have a specter of hate about it. It was so many "faith-based" organizations that brow-beat their members and followers into believing that Proposition 2 "supported" families rather than destroyed them, and that it was the "faith-based," evangelical Christians who decided that homosexuals are second-class citizens whose unions are unworthy of any legal protections or rights. And though I don't know SA's specific stance on Prop. 2, their well-documented anti-gay history gives one pause. Me? I'll continue supporting charities like Zach Scott, Ballet Austin, Arthouse, Project Transitions, and AIDS Services of Austin … charities that care and charities that help bring love, hope, and beauty into our lives instead of division and ugliness.

YOUR DOG ROCKS You know it, poochie knows it, and now these T-shirts from 4t5 Dogs will keep poochie warm while letting the world know how cool they are. Van Howlin', Meet the Beagles, Butthole Sniffers, Barking Heads: Stop Making Scents, Black Lab … all are sure to make you howl and make poochie purr … er, well, you know what I mean. An extension of designer Sally Tetzlaff's love of music (the product line sheet is done like a cover of a 45 rpm record, and the business cards look like the tickets to the 1964 Beatles concert). The Web site, www.4t5dogs.com, is under construction, but you can find 4t5 Dogs products (they also produce Snarfs, or boas for dogs) at Moxie and the Compound, Dirty Dog, and Blackmail.

IT'S HEEERE Project Transitions' annual Holiday Swing is celebrating its 17th anniversary, Saturday, Dec. 3, 8pm-12am at the Dell Jewish Community Center. Holiday fun wouldn't be complete without this party. This year's fundraiser not only features the 22-piece Sentimental Journey Orchestra, as well as local jazz-harmonists the Studebakers, but also includes swing dance lessons by Quicksilver Dancers (7-8pm), a cash bar, a martini and cigar bar, holiday hors d'oeuvres, desserts, and a 300-item silent auction. Auction items include a LiveStrong bracelet worn and autographed by Lance Armstrong during his historic seventh Tour de France. For all ticket information about Holiday Swing, and to find out more about the great works that Project Transitions does on behalf of AIDS, please call 454-8646 or visit www.projecttransitions.org/holidayswing.shtml.

AULD ACQUAINTANCE "Party Like It's Prohibition!!" is the theme for the wonderful New Year's festivities being held at the legendary Y.O. Ranch in Kerrville (celebrating 125 years of ranching). Benefiting the Peaceable Kingdom Retreat for Children (www.peaceablekingdomretreat.org), a ranch/retreat serving 6,000 terminally ill and disabled/underprivileged children and their families every year, the annual event is a chance to raise a ruckus in a real Texas style while doing a world of good for a lot of little ones. Featuring Charlie Robison, Texas cuisine to soothe your soul, and libations to keep you dancing all night long, this night at the ranch is not one to miss. You can ensure a safe holiday by making reservations now with a very special New Year's rate. Tickets are $150, and rooms are $69 per person. Go to www.yoranch.com for more info.

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