Funny, each has its own personality. If you happen to be a mother of, ahem, a certain age (say you had your kid when you were over 30), be prepared to be asked, at the Fiesta Mall playground in Mesa, whether you're out with the grandkids. At the Chandler Mall, you'll get a gander at the high-tech Intel crowd.
And at Scottsdale Fashion Square, it's all about the hot moms or, more specifically, the MILFs. If you don't know what a MILF is yet (we've told you before, in previous "Best ofs") go Google it. This is a family publication. Okay, that's a huge lie, but even so, we've got our standards. Anyhow, you know what a MILF is. You're just being coy.
As we said, it's all MILFs, all the time at the Enchanted Playground at Fashion Square. We figure most of these women have been to see that Scottsdale plastic surgeon who promises the "mommy makeover" no, not that disgusting "down under" procedure; this is the one where they take the fat from your post-pregnancy stomach and stick it into your now-sagging boobs. Whatever work these women have had done, we've gotta give them props, because it was a success. That's one attractive lineup of moms, watching young Britney and Logan romp as long as you go for super-tans and hair extensions.
Better than a fashion magazine, or even an issue of People. And you get to feel like a good parent, too, because really, you're just here to let little Emily play, right?
So it's no surprise we're fans of Dirty Scottsdale, the infamous blog devoted to trashing the city's debauched club scene and the outrageous urbanites who populate it. Since springing up six months ago, DS honcho Nik Richie has served as P-Town's Perez Hilton, posting a slew of embarrassing snapshots of Scottsdale clubgoers accompanied by brutal commentary. There are similar blogs (such as Skanksdale and Scottsdale Sucks), but DS is far and away the most popular of the bunch nabbing upwards of 3 million hits a month and the most vicious. Few escape Richie's snark, as he endlessly rips into scenesters of every stripe, be they douchebags, himbos, $30K millionaires, faux-hawked poseurs, passed-out hotties, or prowling cougars. We've even heard said scenesters send in the photos themselves, looking for their 15 seconds of infamy. Keep 'em coming, Nik. Just make sure you don't post any pics of us unconscious in the Myst parking lot.
"There's hope for us! Yay!" says Hunts, who's just released her new how-to book called It's a Sweet Life... Now! It's a practical guide/comedy romp of her true-life adventures as a real person with diabetes not a doctor with a sugar-level chart.
"When I come across most diabetes books, it's depressing... they're all intimidating numbers and facts," says Hunts, "but nobody tells you what to do when you fall off the horse after trotting over to Krispy Kreme." With chapters like "Occasional Sin," "Burp the Cell Phone," and "This Little Piggy," Hunts offers easy tips to live with a difficult disease. It's straight up meshuggeneh! (How can you not laugh at a diabetes book that includes a Yiddish glossary?) One of the best parts: Hunts who also teaches tantra workshops with her partner tells you how to have hot, raunchy sex while on an insulin pump. Now that's sweet!
Gretchen may be serious about weight loss, but she doesn't take herself or her members too seriously. She's also not perfect, although she is at her lifetime goal weight (damn her). For example: She'll dutifully pimp a Weight Watchers product, like their ice cream bar, starting off so good: "They're delicious and only 2 points a bar!" And ending so bad: "But let's see, there are eight per box, so that means 16 points." She knows us too well, and that makes us want to stay on the straight and narrow. And she's a goof. She waves a metallic pompom each week, leading the group in a cheer to those who've earned a ribbon for losing 10 pounds, and threatening to add weight next week for anyone who doesn't at least mouth the words. Our favorite WW moment was when Gretchen sang one of her original songs a cappella set to the tune of "All That Jazz" from Chicago. Her version is called "All That Fat" and we're not going to share the words here (although we still remember them). You'll have to pay the membership fee and go to the meeting yourself.
A little too fabulous, if you ask us. Poor Cindy's been through a rather embarrassing Percocet addiction and a serious heart attack, not to mention that she's still in a marriage to a notoriously mean man, and the beer heiress has managed to come out smelling like a rose, hanging from a tire swing in a ball gown (really) and looking like well, looking like she's had some work done. Photo retouching, even in the pages of Harper's, wouldn't transform anyone quite this much. Even more than her expressionless face, we couldn't stop staring at, um, an extension of Cindy's face her hair. Hey, more power to you, Cindy, and good job of turning your personal story around, too. We love the Harper's headline: "Myth vs. Reality."
For one thing, she's a staunch conservative backed by an unlikely but powerful lobby, the firefighters. That could have something to do with the fact that her brother, Bob Khan, is the city's fire chief. Beyond that, she's certainly a qualified candidate, and, we hear, a heck of a nice lady. Baier has a lot of credentials, many of which she lists on her campaign Web site. She went to law school, worked for 10 years in the governor's office (most interestingly, as a speechwriter for Fife Symington) and she was the spokeswoman, way back, for the state attorney general. She now works in the field of land conservation (that could mean so many things that we won't even go into it), as a consultant (ditto). And she's on the board of the Phoenix Zoo.
But Baier's most fascinating gig gets short shrift. At the end of her bio, she mentions that she worked as an independent contractor with the San Francisco Examiner. She must have run out of room, because she didn't tell the backstory: Long before she went to law school, worked for Symington, got married, and had a beautiful family (you can see them on her Web site, too) she worked for the San Francisco Examiner along with her beau, Hunter S. Thompson, who was writing columns for the paper. Yes, the Hunter S. Thompson. (Sadly, the late Hunter S. Thompson. He killed himself in 2005.) You're right, it does sound like an unlikely match. But check out Thompson's dedication in his 1988 collection Generation of Swine: Tales of Shame and Degradation in the '80s and read the first line:
"I dropped Maria off in front of the tattoo parlor just before midnight."
We don't know if Baier will prevail in the run-off November 6, but we gotta admit, we're rooting for her. How many current Phoenix City Council members do you think have tattoos?
Go, greased lightning and bravo, Mr. Crumm!