Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
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Thursday, December 01, 2021

If the fashion fluctuations in women’s undies are the signposts of climatic change, count me as glad that I wasn’t around during our planet’s frigid past…

(Via RaSchi)

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 12/01/2021 09:39pm
Category: Comedy, Fashion, Women
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Thursday, November 17, 2021

starting traffic
So, ever since I waxed appreciatively about Jill Wagner’s turn in those Mercury commercials, I’ve been getting a steady stream of visitors seeking out more information about the actress (helped along by some Jalopnik action). You can get an inkling of the interest out there from the… interesting comments being left at that original post (funny how some dunderheads can’t distinguish a blog from your run-of-the-mill garbage forum site).

For the past couple of days, I’ve been getting even more traffic, courtesy of Ms. Wagner. I wasn’t sure what was behind the surge. But I got a hint today when the Detroit Free Press did a feature on Wagner and how her career is taking off, thanks in part to the commercials.

It turns out that Wagner has landed the female lead in an upcoming TV series based on the Blade movie franchise. I just hope it doesn’t turn out to be a rehash of “Buffy, the Vampire Slayer”.

Sarah Webster, the Freep writer, was kind enough to email me a heads-up on her article, because she quoted this blog in it:

“I’m not about to start a shrine,” one fan writes, “but I have to admit, I’m smitten with the spokeswoman in the current Mercury Mariner and Montego commercials. At least, as smitten as one can get from a TV commercial. … I would say that Jill’s vivaciousness — and her sure delivery of the ad slogan ‘put Mercury on your list’ — makes me want to run out and buy a Mercury.”

I’m that “one fan”, of course. And while I don’t mind the citation, I do have a few gripes:

1. No direct attribution, which would have been nice. I like to get the Population Statistic name around (if not my own). Noting that it was blog material would have been even better; I wonder if the Freep is one of those papers that still thinks blogs are too foreign a concept for their readership to recognize.

2. This citation is a good example of what can get lost when transferring a hyperlinked document into print. The “I’m not about to start a shrine” line loses a good deal of its meaning when it’s disconnected from the previous instance of someone obsessing over a TV commercial actress.

3. Finally, the last line is truncated. In full, I wrote, “…makes me want to run out and buy a Mercury… but let’s not get crazy.” Kinda changes the context.

So, overall, it’s a mixed blessing. I’ll gladly take the resultant traffic, though. And naturally, if Wagner wants to show her appreciation, well, you won’t hear me argue…

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 11/17/2005 11:26pm
Category: Advert./Mktg., Women
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Tuesday, November 15, 2021

If fans of “America’s Next Top Model” are expecting to see the show’s winner attain supermodelhood, they’re heading for a letdown. The consensus among fashion insiders is that all the contestants on the reality show are too old, too fat, and — the kicker — too American to make it in the current modeling game.

I’d be surprised if most “Top Model” fans really think the show’s going to produce the next Cindy Crawford, though. Like any reality show, the appeal is in all the manufactured drama. The fact that the protagonists are catwalking Barbie dolls instead of faux survivalists just gives it a hook among the likeliest 18-34 audience:

“I see girls sitting on the No. 4 train to Brooklyn saying, ‘Omigod, I have to get home because the Tyra show is on,’ ” said Wayne Sterling, the editor of Models.com, a slick Web site that obsessively rates model status. “The show has become their spectrum, a Midwest, middle-of-the-road simulation of what the business is like.”

I was unaware of the exact order of non-Americans flooding the modeling ranks: First Brazilians, then Belgians, then Eastern Europeans. (If anything, I’d have guess the opposite order of procession.) And who knew that the classic American look was poised for a comeback (even if it’s not coming from “the Tyra show”):

Whether a banner season for one young mannequin augurs a major taste shift in the modeling business and perhaps even a return to what some forecast as a resurgence of classic American sportswear it seems early to predict. “Does it mean we’re going to see a comeback for American models?” [IMG president Ivan] Bart asked. “Who knows? But I can tell you that nobody but nobody wanted Hillary [Rhoda] until Paris, and then Nicolas [Ghesquiere] cast her. And then suddenly this whole American in Paris thing kicked in and she was totally, totally the top girl of the week.”

All I know is, you’d better work it, girl.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 11/15/2005 09:29pm
Category: Fashion, RealiTV Check, Women
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Saturday, November 12, 2021

Some guys don’t like funny women — at least, not genuinely funny women, the ones who can tell good jokes and have a broad enough sense of humor to appreciate the blue material without getting grossed out. The reason: Joke-telling is part of many a man’s charm arsenal, and so the thinking is that if a woman can amuse herself, who needs the guy?

(Yes, I know: Exact same principle behind vibrator use. Draw your own conclusions on the salutary effects of a dildo vs. a joke on a woman…)

Even though my ability to make ladies laugh (intentionally) is one of my strengths, I don’t consider the prospect of a funny female to be threatening in the least. In fact, I love a sense of humor in a woman. It means she’s laughing at a joke because she actually, y’know, gets it, instead of just tee-heeing because it’s the polite/expected thing to do.

Extending that into the mass entertainment realm, it explains why I like Sarah Silverman so much. Of course, I like her a bit less these days, ever since she hooked up with that glorified Morning Zoo jockey Jimmy Kimmel… but I digress.

I guess Silverman is finally turning heads with her comedy in a major way. She recently registered some big movement on Yahoo!’s Buzz Log, apparently over the upcoming release of Sarah Silverman: Jesus is Magic, her one-woman narrative. There was some speculation that her turn in The Aristocrats helped spark her higher profile; hard to believe that, as she was but one in a cast of many there.

It’s a well-deserved arrival for someone who’s been the “it” girl of comedy for years now. There’s something to be said for hitting your stride in your mid-thirties, and doing it with a dirty joke and a wink along the way.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 11/12/2021 06:31pm
Category: Celebrity, Comedy, Women
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Thursday, November 10, 2021

Man, you’d think two (now former) NFL cheerleaders never had sex in a public bathroom before.

But at least Renee Thomas and Angela Keathley are in good company:

- Percent of Americans who’ve engaged in some sort of public sex, according to a 2002 survey: 21

- Percentage of British people who’ve engaged in public sex, according to a 2004 survey: 60

- Percentage of couples who said they’d made love at a party, according to a 2002 survey: 32

- Percentage of couples who said they’d gotten frisky at the movies, according to the same survey: 18

- Year in which George Michael was arrested for lewd behavior in a public restroom: 1998

- Peak chart position of Digital Underground’s Humpty Dance, which includes the lyric, “I once got busy in a Burger King bathroom”: 11

Brilliant touch, invoking the Humpty Dance

What struck me as the funniest aspect of this whole thing was that they weren’t even in Tampa to work: Like any other travelling team, the Carolina Panthers don’t bring their cheerleading squad on the road. So this was purely extracurricular fun.

Personally, I think the Panthers were nuts to fire the pair. They should build a halftime show around them!

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 11/10/2021 11:56pm
Category: Florida Livin', Football, Women
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Wednesday, November 09, 2021

As a matter of practicality, it makes perfect sense for a woman to keep her wireless phone stashed in her bra (assuming, as I am, that there’s ample room there). It is one less thing to clutter a purse, after all. And there’s little chance of missing a call.

Then again, phone retrieval can make for an unintentional show, especially at a Dallas Stars hockey game.

(Via dustbury.com — the story, not the video)

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 11/09/2021 10:37pm
Category: Comedy, Women
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Tuesday, October 25, 2021

start traffic
Do I know how to pick ‘em, or what? My post on Jill Wagner, spokeswoman on those Mercury car commercials, has been bringing in a steady stream of visitors.

Then today, Gawker Media’s Jalopnik linked to the post.


I’m getting mad hits right now; probably top off at a thousand for the day. Chingy-ching, baby. (Go Adsense.) I need to curry favor from Gawker blogs more often…

Can’t say I blame Jalopnik nor his readers. Wagner’s got an engaging screen presence. I don’t give a hoot about cars in general, and she sure grabbed my attention.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 10/25/2005 07:28pm
Category: Advert./Mktg., Bloggin', Women
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Wednesday, October 19, 2021

serve 'em up
Leanne Shear and Tracey Toomey, the Whisky Chicks, are hot.

And they drink whisky (probably whiskey, too). And they know how to bartend, the experience from which they’ve used to write “The Perfect Manhattan”, a novel about a girl’s travails in the big city.

Aside from fiction, they dole out bar-scene advice:

Q: Is it a good idea to send a drink over to a woman at a bar via the bartender? Or should I just approach the woman and offer to buy her a drink myself?

A: Tracey and I talked this one over for a while — this is a good question! We ultimately feel that we love the idea of a guy sending a girl a drink via the bartender. It’s a win/win situation and a chance for BOTH people to feel each other out — the girl can decide if she wants to talk to the guy in person and thank him for the drink. If she doesn’t approach him, the guy knows she is a dud not worth wasting his time on — all it cost him was the price of the drink!

It may be the cynic in me, but I’ve always felt that sending the drink via the bartender also eliminated (or at least, minimized) the possibility of roofies.

Maybe Leanne and Tracey will relocate to the Tampa Bay area and tend bar. They can serve up their signature rejiggered Manhattans:

First they specified Maker’s Mark Kentucky bourbon, “because of it’s modern flavor and smooth finish.” Then they got rid of the dry vermouth and the bitters. Finally, by adding a splash of maraschino cherry juice, or by muddling an actual cherry, they gave their drink its distinctive color - sort of a dark pink. The result, in their opinion, is a cocktail that is fun but not ditzy like a certain drink made popular by the TV series Sex and the City.

“We see it as a foil to the cosmopolitan,” Toomey said.

I’m sold. It’d be a welcome move, since bartending skills hereabouts are sorely lacking.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 10/19/2005 11:05pm
Category: Food, Women
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Sunday, October 16, 2021

cab for cutie
I’m not about to start a shrine, but I have to admit: I’m smitten with the spokeswoman in the current Mercury Mariner and Montego commercials. At least, as smitten as one can get from a TV commercial.

I think it’s the heels she’s wearing; the tight top doesn’t hurt either.

It didn’t take much online searching to find out who she is: Jill Wagner, best known before this from her stint on “Punk’d” and her photo spread in Stuff Magazine.

If you can believe such things, Jill apparently has a personal profile set up on IMDb, which she’s used to reply to a few threads inquiring about her.

I would say that Jill’s vivaciousness — and her sure delivery of the ad slogan “put Mercury on your list” — makes me want to run out and buy a Mercury… but let’s not get crazy.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 10/16/2005 10:58pm
Category: Advert./Mktg., Women
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Saturday, September 24, 2021

It’s been two years since both Jewel and Liz Phair simultaneously attempted to restart their moribund careers in similar fashion: By sexing themselves up and shooting for a more mainstream demographic than their previous niches. Both received a bit of flak over the move, mainly over the anti-feminist tones in their approaches.

So, what became of these reinventions?

It looks to me like they went absolutely nowhere. Phair, after a brief spurt of celebrity-circuit exposure, has faded back into an anonymous background. Pretty much the same for Jewel, aside from some non-news about her unpublished poetry.

So much heat, only to cool off just as fast as it was generated.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 09/24/2005 08:38pm
Category: Celebrity, Pop Culture, Women
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Thursday, September 15, 2021

Funny how three seconds of earnest eye contact — nothing more, nothing less — can give the whole day such a perceptible lift.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 09/15/2005 11:26pm
Category: Women
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Thursday, August 25, 2021

Wal-Mart‘s bread-and-butter has been its appeal to the everyman/woman. So it’s odd that the retail giant should direct major marketing resources toward unconventional outlets. Like:

- Vogue magazine

- An exclusive distribution deal with Garth Brooks

- Destiny’s Child as the centerpiece for a holiday ad campaign

Frankly, I don’t see Wal-Mart embarking on any of this if it wasn’t for rival Target finding success in delving into the higher-end market. Normally, there’s a danger in alienating the traditional customer base. But in the case of the big-box retailer, I doubt there’ll be any negative effect. That’s not to say this push will be successful — I just can’t see the Vogue crowd embracing Wal-Mart for their fashion needs, even for the fill-in stuff.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 08/25/2005 10:32pm
Category: Business, Fashion, Women
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Monday, August 01, 2021

poppin' fresh
We’ve all seen it: Women walking around in hip-hugger pants, determined to show off that midriff… But exposing generous amounts of flabby gut and love-handle flesh instead.

There is a name for this unsightliness: Muffin top. And the problem is on display everywhere, even on the entertainment beat:

Christina Aguilera is a reformed muffin topper, often spotted onstage during her wild-child period in a pair of badly fitting pants accessorized with an ample tummy roll. Kelly Clarkson is also a repeat offender. “Especially when Kelly first won ‘American Idol,’ the muffin top was the one thing that was common in everything she wore - nothing fit right.” And her tummy can still be seen rising over the pants she’s poured herself into on tour this month…

But those who follow every fashion rule and still suffer from a little tummy crust needn’t worry - it does have one tasty benefit, according to [Shop Etc's fashion editor Kate] Dimmock. “Men seem to like it,” she says. “My husband likes to grab my muffin top and give it a little squeeze.”

Well, not all men like it… A little over-the-top is okay, especially if it really is solely the result of too-tight low-riders or tops. But when it’s obviously rolls of fat, it’s time to pull the plug

And personally, I’ve seen extreme cases where so much overhang occurs that “muffin top” doesn’t do it justice. It’s more like “kangaroo pouch”…

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 08/01/2021 09:21pm
Category: Fashion, Women
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Saturday, July 16, 2021

That’s former Florida Gator and Dallas Cowboy OL Crawford Ker, flanked by his most marketable assets (aka, from left: Stephanie Stewart, Sarah Mathews, and Christina Carbanaro). They’re a big part of the success of Ker’s WingHouse business.

I’d love to see how many letters of complaint the Times got over that shot. It does the job, though — definitely.

As always, this notion just kills me:

Crawford nailed the pictures to the WingHouse’s plywood walls himself, careful to put the bikini photos in the corners and the sports pictures at table level, so families would feel comfortable.

Yeah, I’m sure Mom and Dad are okay with having the boobie pictures a bit higher up on the wall so Junior can’t figure it out. In fact, the whole idea of a place with so much cheesecake on display being a place to “bring the whole family” is so laughable that it amazes me that the chutzpah is there to actually promote it as such. (Then again, you can sell any idea, if the marketing is right.)

And for the record: WingHouse is not Hooters, appearances aside.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 07/16/2005 08:59pm
Category: Business, Florida Livin', Women
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Tuesday, July 12, 2021

Do I know a winning headline when I see one? I daresay I do.

As of this moment, last Tuesday’s post about Danica McKellar’s photo spread for Stuff Magazine, bearing the borrowed headline “WINNIE THE POO(NTANG)”, is in the top ten Google search results for the phrase “winnie the poo”.

Believe me, my pride knows no bounds.

My conscience impels me to point to Winnie the Pooh’s proper online home, for those stumbling here who are actually looking for Christopher Robin’s pal.

Otherwise, welcome to all you perverts and misspellers.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 07/12/2021 01:51pm
Category: Internet, Pop Culture, Women
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Tuesday, July 05, 2021

I rarely ever swipe a headline from another source, blog or otherwise. But when Redphi5h at The Dawn of Man nails it so well, there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. (I’ll plead the Fifth on how well it does or doesn’t sync with my own Weltanschauung…)

Anyhow, to quell any suspicions of Photoshopping fun, this really is Danica McKellar, showing off her stuff for July’s Stuff Magazine. Something about getting grittier roles.

The timing for a reinvention of Winnie Cooper is about right, since “The Wonder Years” has been off the air for twelve years now. Fans who enjoyed and grew up watching the series should be slobbering all over this spread. I didn’t even like the show much (Kevin struck me as an annoying twerp, and that Jets jacket he wore for several episodes didn’t help), and I’m digging it.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 07/05/2021 08:32pm
Category: TV, Women
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Thursday, June 30, 2021

It’s funny how one’s guy/girl radar works independently of the conscious mind. Well, how mine does, anyway (as it relates to girls; I don’t have a guy-tracking radar, to my knowledge).

Today at lunch, I spotted this girl milling about. Not quite pretty, but damned attractive, because she was just my type: Longish dark hair, olive skin, decent body with a nice chest, unassuming body language. I couldn’t maneuver myself over to her to talk with her. But, despite sitting clear across a huge dining area from where she was, and engaging in eating and conversing with others, my head automatically picked up everytime she moved around. By the time she was leaving the joint, my eyes involuntarily followed her out the door, despite the distance and her not being particularly in my line of sight.

Too bad the situation wasn’t more advantageous. If I run into her again, I’m definitely talking to her.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 06/30/2005 01:43pm
Category: Women
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Sunday, June 19, 2021

Does the average girl daydream about being a stripper? Wonder about a) Whether she’d get up enough nerve to actually bare all in some seedy joint, and b) If she had the bod to rake in the big bucks?

Outside the fanatically puritanical, I’m guessing most women wonder about it every once in a while. Jibes well with the overarching body issues we all have.

Some go farther than others: Nerve.com’s Rev. Jen Miller stripped for science, and came away with her soul (barely) intact.

The scientific process was well-displayed during the devising of a stage name:

“The first thing you need is a stripper name,” Velocity told me. “I’m thinking you would make a good Trinity. It’s innocent, but also a little freaky.”

The religious connotations of that seemed pompous, so I asked friends for suggestions. Among their brainstorms were Hamburger McFlapsalot, Shecky Titsberger, Polaka Clitskowski, Clitsy McLabe, Carrie Bigpee, Coco, Georgina, Cozy, Misty, Windy, Jovi, Willa, Lickety Split, Fancy, Jean, Louis Elfesteem and Benedicta (in honor of the new pope). After much consideration, I chose Trinity.

I don’t think a stripper named Trinity would do it for me. Reminds me too much of The Matrix, and that would remind me too much of Keanu, and that would just kill the mood before it got started.

(Posted ahead of time, during my travel to New York)

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 06/19/2005 04:17pm
Category: Society, Women
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Friday, June 17, 2021

but no sex
Walking fairly aimessly on Hudson Street in Tribeca, what should I happen upon but a big-time photo/commercial shoot. It had the works: Huge klieg lights, people wearing headsets, and all that.

It turned out to be a Maybelline New York ad. And Kristin Davis, the new face of Maybelline NY, was the star of the shoot.

So I got to gawk at a glammed-up Kristin Davis, dressed and made-up in shades of purple, for about 15 minutes. I was even lucky enough to be there when they broke for lunch. She took off from the shooting area, walked down the sidewalk to her trailer, and came within a few feet of me, all while I got a generous eyeful.

Happy birthday to me.

by Costa Tsiokos, Fri 06/17/2005 02:07pm
Category: Celebrity, New Yorkin', Women
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Monday, June 06, 2021

How did the once-lowly flip-flop sandal ascend the fashion ladder? On a faulty premise:

The evolution of flip-flops from geek to chic can be traced to open-toed shoes that prodded women to abandon pantyhose, coinciding with a surge in nail salons and toe rings. Who wants to hide pretty feet? Sections of shoe began disappearing on designers’ drafting boards. Runway models paired the plebian flip-flop with bohemian smocks, then left on the footwear when they donned taffeta for evening. (emphasis mine)

Therein lies the problem: There are really not that many pretty feet out there. In fact, there are far too many downright ugly ones on display, thanks to this open-toed madness. No matter how many $75 pedicures or toerings administered, ugly feet remain ugly feet. The biggest shame of it is, most women are kidding themselves to the contrary (although I suspect that, deep down, they know they’re not pulling it off).

For the record, I eschew sandals of all types myself (not that there’s any other type of exposed men’s footwear, really). And yeah, my feet are pretty butt-ugly too. That’s why I keep them under wraps.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 06/06/2021 06:05pm
Category: Fashion, Women
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Saturday, June 04, 2021

(With apologies to Destiny’s Child) You want bellydancing, Tampa Bay’s got bellydancing.

Combine this with that hookah joint in north Tampa, and we could all be rockin’ the Casbah, baby.

Just don’t call them strippers.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 06/04/2021 02:46pm
Category: Florida Livin', Women
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