Archive for Stemware

Speaking of Sasha

We mentioned Sasha Vujacic in a post about last night’s Nets-Thunder game; he was the only New Jersey player to score the long ball. Far be it from me to make some rude comment about scoring, but here’s a look at Sasha’s fiancée:

Maria Shaparova

You’re looking at tennis star Maria Sharapova, seen here in civilian wear at the 2007 ESPYs. She and Vujacic started dating in 2009, and, well, he is called “The Machine.”


Zooeypalooza 8!

Okay, just one more before the end of the year.

Zooeypalooza 8!

You may be able to get larger versions of some of these with a simple click.

Previously seen: ZP 1, ZP 2, ZP 3, ZP 4, ZP 5, ZP 6, and ZP 7.

Disclosure: One of these outfits you’ve seen before, but in a different shot.

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Two-track mind

Robin MeadeThe figure seated at right is Robin Meade, anchor of Morning Express on HLN, and she’s here because I’ve noticed that I have rather a lot of screen captures of her in this particular position, and I’ve never quite understood how it is that anyone can actually sit like that, legs seemingly parallel to one another and angled off to the side, for any length of time. And, by extension — never underestimate the ability of a blogger to play the It’s All About Me card — I’ve never quite understood why it is that I’d pay so much attention when they do.

Inasmuch as I’m routinely hooked up to the largest and most ridiculously easy-to-use information network in the history of the human race, I decided to see if I could scrounge up some theory, and it wasn’t too long before this turned up:

Because of the bone configuration of female legs and hips, most men can’t sit like this so it becomes a powerful signal of femininity. Not surprisingly, over 86% of male participants in our leg rating surveys voted this the most attractive female sitting position.

In other news, there are leg rating surveys.

For comparison, see this shot of Mary Hart from here down. And I suspect that rather a lot of women can’t sit like that either, for configuration reasons of their own.

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Not exactly stocking stuffers

At least, it doesn’t appear that hosiery is a factor in this photograph.

Still, Jessica and Lisa Origliasso, hereinafter referred to, slightly inaccurately, as The Veronicas, have impeccable Christmas credentials, having been born on the 25th of December. (If you must: 1984.)

Jessica and Lisa Origiliasso

No, I don’t know which is which. (For awhile, Jessica went blonde, but that’s no help here.)

While the visuals are undoubtedly a major part of the package here, I admit to a certain fondness for some of their tunes. (“Untouched” proved to be a medium-level earworm for yours truly, before I’d ever actually set eyes on them.) Of course, what sealed the deal was the name:

Christian Slater: Greetings and salutations… you a Heather?
Winona Ryder: No, I’m a Veronica…

Of course, since we’re all about equal time around here, here’s a couple of Heathers (Ellie and Louise).

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Hardy perennial

Once again, the readers of Andrew Crossett’s Celebrity Legs Gallery have chosen Jennifer Aniston as their favorite: the former Friend has now won “Best Celebrity Legs” six times during the 14 years the poll has been operating.

Ms Aniston has been renowned for these gams for some time now — a search of “jennifer aniston legs” produces hundreds and hundreds of photographs — and she’s been a Rule 5 favorite since Robert Stacy McCain promulgated the rule nearly two years ago. Could she possibly be tired of this sort of recognition? Perhaps. I would not be surprised to hear that she’d rather be remembered for something else entirely.

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First Stahl to the left

There exists a poster of some sort, popular in right-of-center circles, which argues something to the effect that Our Babes are more babelicious, or something, than Their Babes.

I’ve never quite bought into that particular premise, though I’m willing to entertain theories why it might be so, or not so. At the moment, I’m leaning toward P. J. O’Rourke’s argument (in Parliament of Whores), quoted here:

[T]here were hardly any beautiful women at the [Housing Now!] rally. I saw a journalist friend of mine in the Mall, and he and I pursued this line of inquiry as assiduously as our happy private lives allow. Practically every female at the march was a bowser. “We’re not being sexist here,” my friend insisted. “It’s not that looks matter per se. It’s just that beautiful women are always on the cutting edge of social trends. Remember how many beautiful women were in the anti-war movement twenty years ago? In the yoga classes fifteen years ago? At the discos ten years ago? On Wall Street five years ago? Where the beautiful women are is where the country is headed,” said my friend. “And this,” he looked around him, “isn’t it.”

That said, there are women associated with the left who are aging gracefully, thank you very much, and here’s one of them:

Lesley Stahl in 2008

This is 60 Minutes correspondent Lesley Stahl, at a New York confab shortly after the 2008 election, shortly before her 67th birthday. And without the blur filter turned on, either.

Addendum: On the other hand, Valley of the Shadow would rather see her sacked.

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In lieu of actual news

The 24-hour news cycle seldom contains anywhere near 24 hours of news. The purveyors of such things, therefore, have calculated that to retain as many eyeballs as possible, they have to resort to things which are technically not news. This includes the early-evening pontificating gasbags, the semi-cute morning shows, and, as Roberta X discovers, just a hint of fanservice:

I returned to full consciousness in time to have my eyeballs tugged out by a push-zoom from a handheld camera moving from the “anchor” (a leaden thing that was preventing motion) to a diminutive meteorologist; this move was followed up by the same handheld staggering across the set to end in a shot of the weatherlady from a vantage at least a foot and a half higher than the top of her head — a shot they held she proceeded to relate the weather with the usual Ritual Gesturing, accompanied by a disconcerting amount of cleavage. I’m not at all sure what the point was — drawing in the male viewership, perhaps? — but as the overture to a headache, it worked all too well.

Now that was worth quoting just for the definition of “anchor.” Still, weird camera angles are part of the Total News Experience these days. I never stay up late enough to see Fox’s Red Eye, for instance, but screenshots inevitably reveal a lowish camera placement — and an attractive female in what is known as the “leg chair.” Tamara Holder occupies that position in this shot:

Tamara Holder on Red Eye

Nor, as Jamie Colby illustrates, is this technique confined to fringe-time shows:

Jamie Colby on Fox News

Or, for that matter, to Fox. See, for instance, CNN’s Brianna Keiler and Jacqui Jeras:

Brianna Keiler and Jacqui Jeras on CNN

We may say that we’d rather get the news from some grizzled Chet Huntley type. In some cases, it might even be true. But cable news apparently can’t afford to take that chance.

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A date which will live

I find myself inordinately fond of Sara Bareilles’ single “King of Anything” these days, and since December 7th is her birthday (she’s thirty-one), I’m up for a photo or two — two because, well, I couldn’t decide which of these to leave behind.

This is the cover photo for the “King of Anything” single:

Sara Bareilles

And this, um, isn’t:

Sara Bareilles

I suppose it would be reasonable to ask who died and left me in charge of the pictures.

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As long as I’m whining

A couple of posts ago, I made some noise about 26-year-old women and how I couldn’t possibly be on their radar. There are, of course, very good reasons for that, and anyway Creepy Old Guy Mode is not really what I aspire to.

Just the same, I’m going to torture myself with a visual:

Mandy Moore on the Tonight Show

This is singer/actress Mandy Moore, born in, yes, 1984. (Judging by the Tonight Show set, this is a 2008 screen shot.) I have a duplicate of this file in C:\NOWAY\NOTEVER.

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One of those California gurls

So I gave myself an assignment for Rule 5 this week: a picture of Katy Perry that does not remind me of Zooey Deschanel, since, you know, they look so much alike and all.

This seems to fill the bill quite nicely:

Katy Perry

Although if Zooey wants to wear something this short, I’ll be happy to post a correction.

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Not available

News Item: [TMZ reported Tuesday] that Tony Parker had filed for divorce from Eva Longoria. But a rep for Eva tells TMZ that that is not true and that Tony doesn’t even have a divorce lawyer.

So Eva continues to be off the market. Not that this affects my plans in any way, except to give me an excuse to put up a picture:

Eva Longoria in 2008

This was, if I recall correctly, a publicity shot taken prior to the 2008-09 season of Desperate Housewives.

Note: I didn’t watch the TV coverage of the Spurs-Thunder game Sunday night — I followed it on the radio — so I have no idea if Eva was on hand to watch Tony lead all scorers with 24.

Update: Then again… (See Comments.)

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Possibly Google-eyed

Sarah Palin looks away from the screen for just a moment:

Sarah Palin at the computer

Took me five tries to get this particular frame frozen. I plead high levels of distraction. (Click for HD [2 MB].)

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Discerning readers, I assume

I gave up reading Condé Nast Traveler several years ago, about the time it occurred to me that all the hotels I’ve ever stayed in, combined, might be hard-pressed to total five stars. So I didn’t participate in this year’s Readers’ Choice Awards, though it would have been nice to have attended the actual award ceremony, just to have caught a glimpse of Angie Harmon:

Angie Harmon at RCA

(Click to embiggen past all understanding.) That feathered sheath, from Naeem Khan’s Spring ’10 collection, is simply gorgeous; the shoes, I think, are by Sergio Rossi.

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Zooeypalooza 7!

It’s not like I’ve forgotten or anything.

Zooeypalooza 7!

Click any section to embiggen.

What has gone before: ZP 1, ZP 2, ZP 3, ZP 4, ZP 5, and ZP 6.

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Once in a while, someone wanders in here looking for shots of former National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, and hey, who am I to turn him away?

Condi Rice on the Late Late Show

This was scissored out of a screenshot from Dr. Rice’s appearance on The Late Late Show last month; Craig Ferguson, obligingly, has uploaded the video. (Two parts, approximately 16 minutes.)

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On being unobservant

For some reason, I have a reputation for effortless multitasking, which is wholly undeserved: there are occasions when I can barely focus on one task at a time. I do apparently possess mad time-management skillz, which presumably contributes to that particular illusion, but often as not I’m utterly oblivious of my surroundings.

Example: I had to run an errand to another office yesterday, and one of the denizens therein was seated in that classic gawky-twelve-year-old position: moderately slouchy, legs double-crossed. Not what I’d generally expect from someone pushing five times that age, but no big deal.

It wasn’t until a couple of minutes later that this information actually got processed. Not everyone, after all, is capable of the double-cross; that’s a pretty severe bending operation, requiring a substantial degree of svelteness, and — “Are you getting smaller?” I blurted out.

Indeed. Somewhere between then and the last time I was paying attention, she’d lost 67 pounds. “Twenty-five to go,” she said.

The Flummox Meter deflected to near full-scale; I’m trying to decide whether the major factor was embarrassment over having admitted to paying insufficient attention, or sadness at knowing the official beginning of shorts season is several months away.


Conceal of approval

We’ve all seen models in almost exactly this pose; it’s popular, I suspect, because it’s a simple matter to create the illusion that said model is wearing nothing but a facial expression. (Think Jennifer Aniston in this bottled-water ad, only more so.)

So I had to snag this shot, in which it’s perfectly obvious that the model is (somewhat) dressed, nicely subverting that particular photographic convention.

Paola Oliveira

The demure young lady here is Brazilian actress Paola Oliveira.

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A Swank photo

Hilary Swank won her first Academy Award for Boys Don’t Cry, in which she played a young man who’d been raised as a girl. She disappeared so deeply into this role that I remember wondering if maybe “Hilary,” which used to be a boy’s name way back when, still might be.

Um, no, not in this case:

Hilary Swank

As that guy on SNL used to say: “ACTING!”

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D is for dramatic

D is also for Dana Delany, and what prompted this outburst was a quote accompanying this Shoebunny report in which she’s sporting a pair of sandals by Gucci. Said Ms D:

“I’m not sure which would be a greater honor: the People’s Choice Award or Best Celebrity Legs … hmmmm … In any case, a vote for either would be appreciated and the show [presumably Desperate Housewives] can use whatever boost it can get. I think my legs can stand on their own.”

Dana Delany

They also do a pretty good job of sitting.

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Picture of the Century

Well, actually, this is probably not a Century. The original Buick Century followed a classic GM pattern: shove a big V8 into a smallish bodyshell. For some reason, this didn’t sell well in the 1930s and early 1940s, and when civilian car production resumed after World War II, Buick left the Century badge in the vault, only to revive it for 1954 by shoving a big V8 into a smallish bodyshell. This is, I think, a ’52.

Jacqueline Obradors in front of a Buick

In front of the Buick is a ’66 model: Jacqueline Obradors, an American actress of Argentine ancestry.

What? You want to see more of the car?

Jacqueline Obradors not in front of a Buick

This particular GM exhibition dates to, I believe, 2004.

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That increasy kid stuff

Dick Stanley doesn’t think “embiggen” is all that cromulent:

Seems the lexicographers are all aflutter that “embiggen” is seeping into mainstream usage. It should be “biggerize,” I tell you.

And there is one distinct advantage to “biggerize”:

[It's] the natural opposite of “minimize.” “Embiggen” is completely out of left field.

I would have thought the natural opposite of “minimize” would be “Maximize,” as in “Dania Ramirez Maximized her visibility in the August 2010 issue.”

I detect a lexicographical debate of prodigious largeosity on the horizon. In the meantime, here’s a gratuitous photo of Dania Ramirez:

Dania Ramirez

Click to, um, biggerize.

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She’s had a sandwich or two

Kate Winslet, who turned 35 this week, is the antithesis of the waif. The picture is okay, but the quotation is choice:

Kate Winslet in some UK fashion mag

Which reminds me of when Kate Moss was pregnant, and Jay Leno snarked: “Of course, now she’s eating for one.


Veil fail

France has banned the niqab veil, effective next year, and this is what’s in store:

Scarves covering the face were banned in schools and hospitals, as well as on public transport. Women, who violate this requirement will be fined €150 and given a course of lectures on the basics of the secular foundations of the French Republic. Men who force women to wear burqa will face up to a year in prison.

In the meantime, there’s this:

Two French female students have made a film of the pair of them strolling through the streets of Paris in a niqab, bare legs and mini-shorts as a critique of France’s recently passed law.

Calling themselves the “Niqabitches,” the veiled ladies can be seen strutting past prime ministerial offices and various government ministries with a black veil leaving only their eyes visible, but with their long legs naked bar black high heels.

Only one of the two is actually Muslim. The reaction from passers-by was predictable:

At one stage in the film, the two women approach the entrance to the ministry of immigration and national identity, only to be told by a policeman to go elsewhere. However, a policewoman also present is delighted by their clothes. “I love your outfit, is it to do with the new law?” she asks. “Yes, we want to de-dramatise the situation,” one girl replies. “It’s brilliant. Can I take a photo?” asks the policewoman, who will soon be required to fine public niqab wearers.

(Via Tom Maguire.)

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The [blank] beneath my wings

Evidently, it’s a platform:

Prada wingtips from 2011 Spring-Summer

I haven’t quite decided what I think about this item from Prada’s 2011 Spring/Summer collection. From here up, this is a traditional wingtip, with all the traditional detailing in all the traditional places; from there down, it’s, um, less so. And as ShoeBlog says, “If Prada’s shoes don’t jump start the dreary weather, at least the colors will.” Whatever you may think of that orange stripe, it’s certainly not drab.

Maybe. After the jump, what they saw on the runway above those shoes:

Read the rest of this entry »

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Only in my dreams

It appears, judging by her Web site, that Deborah Gibson is once again embracing her Debbie-ness.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but she looks awfully Deborah-esque here:

Deborah Gibson

Then again, she’s 40 now.

Oh, and the dress is by Alice and Olivia, the shoes by Giuseppe Zanotti, the occasion was a pre-screening reception for 3 Billion and Counting. [Warning: brief embedded audio.]

(Previous Debitude here.)

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In excelsis

Gloria Stuart, who died last weekend at the ripe old age of 100, is probably best known these days for her turn in James Cameron’s Titanic, back in 1997. Having myself managed to avoid anything Cameron-related since The Abyss, I prefer to remember her as Claude Rains’ love interest in James Whale’s The Invisible Man, back in 1933:

Claude Rains with Gloria Stuart

Here’s the Los Angeles Times obituary, in which Leonard Maltin says:

“She was a charming and beautiful leading lady in the ’30s, and I never understood why her career didn’t go further at that time.”

Whale did what he could, casting her in three of his films. And it’s not like they didn’t have the 1930s equivalent of Rule 5, either:

Gloria Stuart, circa 1932

And just for the heck of it, here’s a clip of Gloria being bothered just a tad by inebriated houseman Boris Karloff in The Old Dark House, a James Whale thriller from 1932.

(Thanks to Allen Ellenberger and Dave Schuler.)


The Days continue frabjously

And on the third Day, we find: a wedding dress.

This is Laraine Day, who played Nurse Mary Lamont in a bunch of Dr. Kildare pictures, and eventually found herself ill, in a sense: she was sick of the role. The producers decided to let her marry the good doctor (in Dr. Kildare’s Wedding Day), and then perish tragically.

A couple years later — we’re now up to 1944 — Day found herself in this little romcom called Bride By Mistake, which seems to be a reboot of 1934′s The Richest Girl in the World, minus the Titanic references. She does seem a bit perplexed here:

Laraine Day in Bride By Mistake

This particular still was spotted at Doctor Macro’s, along with a nice synopsis of whatever plot was to be found in this film.

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Attention fail

Apparently men aren’t quite as observant as they’d like to think they are:

Researchers at Northumbria University in England conducted a study using 3-D motion-capture technology. During the experiment, males observed the figures of females between the ages of 18 and 35 walking with or without high heels on.

Despite the fact that wearing heels changes a woman’s posture and height in a way that presumably amps up their attractiveness, the men in the experiment couldn’t tell the difference between a woman who was wearing heels and one who was not (unless the heels themselves were visible).

First question: Which way are they walking? Unless they’re headed right for you, it seems to me you’re bound to notice something like this.

Or maybe that’s the catch. After all, I’ve never seen them headed right for me.

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Another frabjous Day

In case Felicia Day didn’t do it for you, we’ll back up a couple of generations:

Doris Day doing her best Ruth Etting

This of course is Doris Day, circa 1955, in what appears to be a shot from Love Me or Leave Me, a somewhat-fictionalized version of the life of singer Ruth Etting. This particular portrait seems to be flopped from a poster of the time — or the poster was flopped from the portrait.

Are there more Days to come? Stay tuned.

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Not a hollow star

You might remember Alexis Bledel from the Gilmore Girls TV series, which ran seven years on The WB and The CW. (Parenthetical note: What’s with the “The” on these networks? Also, why say “Parenthetical note” when it’s obviously in parentheses?)

Anyway, it’s her 29th birthday today, and I had this photo lying around, so…

Alexis Bledel

Besides, she’s not wearing those damned Traveling Pants.

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