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January 14, 2000

AMY AND ISABELLE. The bestselling story of a mother and daughter who could take a lesson from Ava and Mary Jo. Available in paperback shortly.

"YOU'VE WON A FABULOUS VACATION! BUT THAT'S NOT ALL! IT'S ALSO YOUR HONEYMOON!" Still more new dating game shows: "First Date" -- where your parents take part in the bachelor/ette interviews -- and "Wed At First Sight" -- where cyber-lovers meet for the first time and tie the knot if the chemistry's organic. Sure, we're always looking for alternatives to singles bars and personals, but these shows can't help but make me think of nightmares-come-true: "Our date tanked ... on national television!" What's next, a show where you have to take the SAT naked with no pencils?

PINK MARTINI. So far, this CD is the only thing that's threatened to come between members of Team BG (we had to get extra so we wouldn't fight). Not just another bar car on the lounge train, these guys are the real euro-cocktail deal. A must for the classy bachelor/ette pad, and not just because of the toe-nudging rendition of "Bolero."

BRINI MAXWELL LIVING. Just because "The Brini Maxwell Show" host (Ben Sanders) wears falsies doesn't mean she doesn't offer real-life household tips (lighter fluid removes black heel marks on linoleum). The show -- taped in Brini's apartment by her mother and broadcast on Manhattan cable -- also offers sound advice to viewers ("How do I find a husband?" "Don't look for a husband, look for a single man."). A recent Times article quoted one fan e-mail: "My husband and I always enjoy your show and try to watch it every week. 'I must admit, though," she continued, "that after one of your episodes, I feel quite inadequate to my role of wife, and know that my hubby probably feels a twinge of regret at marrying a modern career woman instead of an efficient, elegant nest builder like you." For clips, click here. (Sorry/eek, Windows media players only ... but I'm sure Brini can fix that with a screwdriver and a wedge of Jarlsberg.)

DIARYLAND. Your big bad brother will never think to look here.

ROBO-VACUUM. Part Furby, part Rosie, the DC06 is the world's first commercial "autonomous vacuum cleaner," which spirals itself in from the perimeter of a room and can maneuvers itself around perceived obstacles. [Enemies of BG: insert "Now that they have a gadget, maybe husbands will finally help with cleaning!" joke here.]

UNITED IN HOLY MATRIMONY? In this month's Ms., Marjorie Ingall outs the airline that won't let her and her husband have a family membership to the "Red Carpet Club" because they have different last names. "If we let men and women who have different last names share a membership," the clerk told her, "we'd have hundreds of businessmen saying their secretaries were their wives." Eeek! (What, they're not worried about superheros and their interns?)

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