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Lifestyle Columns

Sex, politics, fashion and everything else a gen-X everygal loves to dish about.


  • The Day the Journalists Vanished
    August 26, 2018
    No One Fretted Much Over the War on the Press. Big Mistake. It began that morning with an eerie silence: the…
  • Camping Sucks; There, I Said It
    August 26, 2018
    Done Apologizing for Detesting the Great Outdoors I’m sitting 5,400 feet high in the Sierra Nevada mountains at the edge of…
  • Rage Is My Super Power
    August 26, 2018
    Hormonal Surges Fuel Temper That’s Uncontrollable — but Could Power Gotham At my son’s summer camp, the kids get to know…
  • A Cart … Apart
    July 14, 2018
    Debate over Returning Shopping Carts Mirrors Political Divide I love a good story, well told. A powerful narrative can puncture our…
  • Oh, Say, Can You C-Word?
    June 26, 2018
    Notes on a feckless country The word couldn’t have gotten more buzz if Trump’s stubby thumbs had tweeted it from…
  • One Space. Period.
    June 2, 2018
    Foes of Formatting Want Us to Take Double-Spaced Step Backward For months on end, I’ve been watching in shock as seemingly…
  • A Requiem for Trolls Gone By
    June 2, 2018
    I'm Nostalgic for Nasty Online Commenters For a decade, they plagued me. Called me bitch, boob, bigot. Speculated about my weight…
  • The Call of Target’s Toilets
    June 2, 2018
    Do You Know About The Bull’s-Eye’s Bathroom Phenomenon? A dozen years ago, despondent at the dearth of a Target in our…
  • Speaking with the Enemy?
    March 10, 2018
    Chatting Up Christian Gun Owners 'The Benham Bros.'  Much has been sermonized about the incivility of modern American discourse: We’re…
  • This Is Not Your Parents’ Sex
    March 10, 2018
    Women Share Stories About Sex After 50 Nobody wants to think about their parents having sex. Or their parents’ friends. Or,…
  • #Me … NotSoMuch?
    March 10, 2018
    Confessions of a Last-Wave Feminist Ladies, I gotta come clean. From the first time I saw it on a social media…
  • Will I Marry You? Why Knot
    January 21, 2018
    Reverend Starshine Reporting for Duty Only two men have ever seriously asked me to marry them, and I said yes to…
  • Safe Table Talk for the Holiday Season
    January 21, 2018
    Conversing Peacefully with Your Family at Thanksgiving It’s been quite a year, folks. Hell, it’s been quite a week. In the…
  • Smutty Buddies
    January 21, 2018
    A Plea to Sex-Robot Makers Dear Manufacturers of These Sex Robots I Keep Hearing About, Apologies for this interruption as…


  • That’s No Hurricane; It’s a Him-icane
    October 22, 2017
    The Gender Saga Behind Naming Storms Hazel killed hundreds in 1954. Camille flattened cities in 1969. And Agnes cost billions in…
  • Thank You, President Trump
    August 25, 2017
    #45’s Frequent Failings Take my Mind off my Tween It’s a phrase you don’t hear often. His chiefs of staff…
  • God-Peddlers: Beware of Resident
    June 6, 2017
    When Jehovah’s Witnesses Come A-Knockin’ ... In an un-trafficked corner of our living room sits a humble, lumpy pet bed. It’s…
  • Trump Makes Women Want to Run
    June 5, 2017
    That smug, can’t-catch-me grin. Those wee flailing hands, attempting to punctuate facts that don’t exist. That whiny voice huffing, “The…
  • Trump Plump: Post-Election Stress Eating Is a Thing
    April 3, 2017
    You used to be fun, they say. You used to make us titter with your escapist jaunts into the lighter…
  • Q&A with Gloria Steinem
    March 2, 2017
    Gloria Steinem Can't Believe We're Still Fighting This Shit 82-Year-Old Feminist Answers 20 Questions with Starshine Roshell She loved the superhero’s truth-coaxing…
  • ‘Shout Your Abortion’: Whispering Isn’t Working
    February 19, 2017
    She wasn’t trying to start a revolution. But it was September 2015, the House had just voted to defund Planned…




  • Plan B Partners
    November 6, 2014
    Do you have a 'backburner' boyfriend in mind—just in case your marriage falls apart? New study says yes, you do.
  • ’80s Dancing Is the Only Tolerable Workout
    October 11, 2014
    Keep Your CrossFit; I Want to Bust Out the Belinda
  • Pray Tell: The Hocus Pocus of Happy Thoughts
    September 25, 2014
    Having a hard time this week, folks. Thanks for listening.
  • Women’s Bits
    September 11, 2014
    My Column. Helping Women Find Their Vaginas Since 2001.
  • Too Old for a Micro-Mini?
    August 14, 2014
    Is it time to stop shopping at Forever 21? (And can it at least wait till I've spent this gift…
  • Wife-Carrying: An Actual Thing
    July 17, 2014
    Have you heard of this sport?! Naturally, I had to try it.
  • Ms. Roshell Goes to Washington
    July 4, 2014
    What happens when a jaded Hollywood brat touches down on Rome-on-the-Potomac? Stuff. That's what.
  • Are You a Feminist NOW?
    June 5, 2014
    Listen up, sisters: You don't get to treat feminism like an accessory that would ruin your otherwise awesome outfit.
  • Where Does the Story End?
    May 8, 2014
    How do you know when Book Club is over? Mine might be in its final chapter ...
  • A Woman Unglued
    April 24, 2014
    My interview with the hilarious, perimenopausal, can't-believe-she's-flipping-50 Sandra Tsing Loh.
  • A Reader Writes My Lead
    March 13, 2014
    My gasping attempt to write a column based on a first and last sentence submitted by reader Hattie Husbands during…
  • How My Grandma Looks
    February 27, 2014
    My hard-scrabble, good-humor grandmother asked me a startling question just days after a stroke paralyzed her left side.
  • What the Focus This?
    February 13, 2014
    So it turns out I'm lousy at meditation. But I write a hell of a headline.
  • Sex Robots
    January 16, 2014
    Yep, you heard me.


  • I Am Not Making This Up: I Interviewed Dave Barry
    December 19, 2013
    Here's how life works: On the day you're scheduled to interview your idol, you wake up with acute laryngitis. I…
  • Men Are Going Bare. Down There.
    December 5, 2013
    If I don't report on these trends, people ... WHO WILL?
  • Transgender Students
    November 21, 2013
    Fellas in the ladies' room, chicks on the football team ... it's pandemonium out there, people. And I've got the…
  • Happy Amnesia-versary
    October 24, 2013
    It's a blind spot on my dear husband's brain. And apparently it's a common affliction ...
  • Shopping for Stun Guns
    October 10, 2013
    Lured to the sea by the promise of a champagne brunch ... and the SPANX-like effect of a borrowed wetsuit.
  • Surf Lesson
    September 26, 2013
    Lured to the sea by the promise of a champagne brunch ... and the SPANX-like effect of a borrowed wetsuit.
  • Selling Used Pregnancy Tests?
    September 12, 2013
    Wanna buy a stick that someone peed on? NOW YOU CAN!
  • PMS: A Safety Guide for Men
    August 15, 2013
    Advice for fellas on tiptoeing around a woman who is riding the prickly premenstrual pony.
  • Kids Left in Cars
    July 18, 2013
    A fatal, forgetful mistake.
  • Teenage Summer Views
    July 4, 2013
    My son Stone wrote this week's column for me. Seems he may have a future in Making Fun of HIs…
  • Lines ‘n’ Lies at Disney
    June 20, 2013
    Would you pay $1,000 to a disabled tour guide so you could be first in line at Star Tours??
  • Atheists Saved!
    June 6, 2013
    The Lord giveth and the Lord retracteth for damage control.
  • No, I Won’t Go to Your Kid’s Show
    May 23, 2013
    Life's too short to watch other people's children sing 'Can You Feel the Love Tonight.'
  • Backyard Chickens a Fowl Idea?
    May 9, 2013
    Does the urban coop trend have wings? Not in my clucking yard.
  • My Midlife, Half-Hearted Crisis
    April 25, 2013
    My 'midlife' is only a 'crisis' because it finds me doing everything half-assed -- if I even put that much…
  • Advice for Advice Columnists
    January 31, 2013
    Got to chat with bestselling 'Wild' author and Dear Sugar columnist Cheryl Strayed recently. She talked me off the advice-columnist…




  • Well, Excuuuuuse Him!
    December 16, 2010
    Are comedians required to be Wild-and-Crazy at all times?
  • Faux Ho Ho
    December 9, 2010
    Are fake trees cheating? You tell me.
  • Vajazzling Is Befuddling
    November 18, 2010
    I'm a chick who likes to twinkle, OK? But I draw the line at gilding the lily.
  • Love Among the Stars
    November 4, 2010
    Addicted and Ashamed: Why I Can't Stop Caring About Celeb Sex Lives ...
  • In Honor of MJ
    October 21, 2010
    Something evil's lurking in the dark: Bustin' the 'Thriller' dance in public, baby!
  • Beauty Secrets Revealed
    October 14, 2010
    The downside of living in sin ...
  • Ana Marie Cox Waxes Wonky
    October 7, 2010
    I got to talk pot, punditry and Ann Coulter with Wonkette/Rachel Maddow bestie Ana Marie Cox!
  • ‘Why He’s My Ex’
    September 23, 2010
    The worst boyfriends in history ...
  • Since When Does ‘Adult’ Mean Dirty?
    September 9, 2010
    Vibrating underpants, busty cops, and vaginal rejuvenation at Adultcon 2010.
  • The Art of the Come-On
    August 26, 2010
    If I said you had a beautiful body, would you hold it against me?
  • Once Upon Two Mattresses
    August 12, 2010
    Starshine goes under-covers to see why couples are pulling an I-Love-Lucy in the boudoir.
  • Comic Books
    July 22, 2010
    If they're dragging me to Comic-Con, they'd better at least defend their odd fascination with superheroes ...
  • Mini-Cakes
    July 15, 2010
    An ode to cupcakes, in honor of Santa Barbara's upcoming Cupcake Camp.
  • Take This Ring and …
    July 1, 2010
    Is your divorce worth celebrating? Couples are now saying 'I don't' in much the same way they said 'I do'
  • Relationship Dissection
    June 17, 2010
    When scientists get their gloved hands on our heartstrings, it gives me the willies.
  • On Decent Proposals
    June 3, 2010
    How'd he pop the question -- and does it really matter?
  • Cycle-wary
    May 20, 2010
    Are the joys of motorcycle riding worth the broken clavicles?
  • Should Marriage Expire?
    May 6, 2010
    In case 'I do' isn't supposed to last forever ...
  • No More Meanies
    April 22, 2010
    Enough with compassion. I miss screaming 'Flickwad!' out the car window.
  • Unforgettable Mistakes
    March 25, 2010
    What did you do RIGHT today?
  • Breast Milk Canapé
    March 18, 2010
    Breast milk CHEESE?! Turns my stomach but not for the reason you think ...
  • Book Club’s Dramatic Chapter
    March 11, 2010
    He lied. She cried. And we showed up and listened.
  • Panhandlers Beg the Question
    March 4, 2010
    How do YOU handle panhandlers?
  • Dazzling Dollhouse
    February 4, 2010
    My dad is a woodcarver and he worked most of a year on my 'tiny mansion.' It was replete with…
  • Cars Are for Banging
    January 28, 2010
    Dents? What dents??
  • Bucking Monogamy
    January 21, 2010
    Lovin' large? Polyamorists see love as a many -- MANY -- splendored thing.


  • Single Ladies Lament
    December 17, 2009
    Why should I be blessed with a guy who turns me on and tolerates my considerable freakiness when so many…
  • Prime-Time Promises
    December 3, 2009
    What happens when TV producers option your book for a sitcom? I found out.
  • Going to Bed Angry
    November 19, 2009
    Starshine went to bed angry and lived to write about it.
  • Sexile
    November 5, 2009
    Putting the kibosh on campus canoodling?
  • Doing the Right Thing
    October 22, 2009
    Am I the only one confused and incapacitated by knowing the fiendish ways that every product on the market will…
  • Welcome to the Gun Show
    October 8, 2009
    Too aggro for yoga, too wussy for ... well, anything that hurts, I need to be tricked into fitness.
  • My Kingdom for Bloody Bandwidth
    September 24, 2009
    When I discover that my Internet is down -- defunct, dead -- I panic.
  • Missing My Mall
    September 10, 2009
    Malls are the 3-D version of thumbing through your favorite magazine: At best, you find something delightful inside. At worst,…
  • Straight Girl/Gay Guy
    August 27, 2009
    Why Every Girl Needs a Gay
  • Derby Dames
    August 13, 2009
    S.B.'s Mission City Brawlin' Betties Are Roller Skating Badasses
  • Is Waxing Waning?
    July 30, 2009
    Not Even a Recession Can Keep Women from Waxing
  • Never Say Neverland
    July 3, 2009
    Starshine reports from the frontlines of the Michael Jackson saga, where crazed news crews outnumbered crazy fans.
  • Real-Life TV
    July 2, 2009
    What Your 'Reality' Show Says About You.
  • Gay Marriage in the Midwest
    June 4, 2009
    Who's cool now? Starshine reveals why Iowa kicks California's toned, tanned tushie.
  • Pearly Whites
    May 7, 2009
    Did you know it's rude to bleach your teeth in church? Starshine did not.
  • The Mythical Cougar
    April 23, 2009
    The claws come out when Starshine watches 20 hairless, pec-flexing beauhunks woo a Cougar.
  • Notes from the Road
    April 9, 2009
    RV having fun yet? A report from the road.
  • The Height of My Career
    March 26, 2009
    I'm not a ginormous person. Not hulking. Not alpine. I couldn't, like, take down Ann Coulter in a cage fight,…
  • The Love Contract
    March 12, 2009
    Got the hots for your boss? Starshine issues a memo on interoffice 'love contracts.'
  • Joy is Cheap
    February 26, 2009
    Joy Is Cheap: Starshine's dirt-broke and looking for free fun. Add to her list!
  • Stud or Schlub: Lust on the Red Carpet
    February 12, 2009
    Is it weird NOT to have a crush on the usual Hollywood man candy?
  • Sitters: The Last Stand
    January 22, 2009
    Recalling Poor Judgment Girl and Blatant Liar Guy, Starshine asks that her next babysitter obey just six simple rules.
  • Jogging Mania
    January 15, 2009
    This town is a runner's rapture. But what are you really running from?
  • Just Say ‘Know’ to Teen Sex
    January 8, 2009
    Starshine learns about 'sexting' in a teen sex workshop.


  • Fellas, Please! Don’t Go!
    December 18, 2008
    Genital shrinkage? Starshine ponders news that the male gender is, well, dwindling.
  • Embers to Ashes
    December 4, 2008
    Saving your ash: Starshine asks evacuees what they took with them when they fled the flames.
  • Dear Prop. 8 Supporters
    November 20, 2008
    Starshine wonders how it feels to 'win' ... and still be such losers?
  • Grrrrling at the Moon
    November 4, 2008
    Nothing bad ever started with a skinny dip.
  • Halloween for the Slutty Sort
    October 23, 2008
    The Slutty Mechanic? Starshine peeked at this year's Halloween costumes. And she's frightened.
  • Watch Her Strut
    October 9, 2008
    Starshine steps into the debate on whether a woman's walk can sum up her sexual history.
  • Another Sticky Mess for O.J.
    September 25, 2008
    Crime scene confession: With OJ back in court, Starshine admits to shoddy reporting back when Simpson's wife was murdered.
  • The Heir a Parent?
    September 9, 2008
    Starshine doesn't give a moose's duff what kind of mother Sarah Palin is.
  • Cyber Sleuthing
    August 14, 2008
    Bald? Rich? Covered in tattoos? Starshine gets hooked on the shockingly addictive, slightly creepy pastime of Googling exes.
  • Column Me Irresponsible
    July 31, 2008
    I'd love to tell McCain exactly where he can put his stale rhetoric. Instead, I tell him where he can't…
  • A Gal in the Guys’ Gym
    July 17, 2008
    Starshine has been thrust, Spandex-clad, into a world of sweaty, grunting beefcakes. And she doesn't like it as much as…
  • Facebook Friendships Hard to Ignore
    July 3, 2008
    Poked by a stranger? Facebook friendships are freaky.
  • Church and State Collide on Highway
    June 19, 2008
    Church and state collide on South Carolina's highways, leaving atheists a little cross.
  • So I Think I Can Dance
    June 5, 2008
    With Starshine, watusi is what you get.
  • Obama’s Term of Endearment Leaves Bitter Aftertaste
    May 22, 2008
    Obama! Baby! Sweetheart! Advising the sweet-talkin' senator to watch his language.
  • Bawling for Dollars
    May 8, 2008
    Buying into a women's wampum workshop where there's no deficit of tears.
  • A Croc of Shoe
    May 1, 2008
    Starshine swears that your favorite holey, rubbery sandals are Lucifer's footwear.
  • Paradise Found
    April 10, 2008
    Starshine misses Cancun by 500 miles and wakes up in another strange, exotic land. Wearing capri pants.
  • Thank You, Officer. No Really.
    April 3, 2008
    Starshine's caught speeding and, to her own shock, doesn't try to wriggle out of it.
  • I’m Virtually Popular!
    March 27, 2008
    Cyber colleague Starshine explains why working at home is about as satisfying as eating a virtual donut.
  • Notes from the Citizen McCaw Red Carpet
    March 13, 2008
    She laughed, she cried, she cursed. Starshine reports on Citizen McCaw from where she sat.
  • She’s Great. Him I Hate.
    February 28, 2008
    Starshine lays out options for coping with the calamitous-couple conundrum.
  • Ode to Real Love
    February 14, 2008
    Starshine scrawls a love note to the guy she used to shower with.
  • How to Love Hate Mail
    January 31, 2008
    Starshine -- also known as the ignorant, insulting, poor-mannered whiner who clearly hates her family -- shares some of her…
  • My New Stud
    January 17, 2008
    Starshine tells the hole truth about piercings.


  • Swearing Off New Year’s Promises
    December 27, 2007
    Starshine takes on a hated New Year's tradition, and wishes that your 2008 be F-bomb free
  • Merry Solstice
    December 13, 2007
    Starshine lets her heathen flag fly.
  • Pretty, Please?
    November 29, 2007
    Guide to gorgeous: From common vinegar to pricey Line Refiners, Starshine begged her gal pals to reveal their long-guarded beauty…
  • Email Embarrassment
    November 15, 2007
    One tiny mistake. Just a blip of a slip of a finger. And in that common email error, Starshine exposed…
  • Smellywood’s Puttin’ on the Spritz
    November 1, 2007
    I smell a sucker. Starshine takes a good, long whiff of Britney Spears and David Beckham.
  • Doppeldressers
    October 18, 2007
    Starshine undresses the odd phenomenon of showing up in the same outfit as another woman, and being thus inspired to…
  • Cool Beans
    October 11, 2007
    Health care? Tax cuts? Ha! Starshine explains why chocolate is the obvious and abundant answer to society's ills.
  • Taking the Stand
    September 20, 2007
    Yes, as a matter of fact, I DO solemnly swear. Starshine describes what it's like to be a witness in…
  • Mop Scene
    September 13, 2007
    The filthy truth: Starshine comes clean about housekeeper guilt.
  • Sex drive?
    August 30, 2007
    Starshine has a revelation about hanky-panky in a hatchback.
  • Oil Meets Girl
    August 23, 2007
    Starshine confesses to a brief but hands-on affair with a hot stone masseuse.
  • Granny’s Yarn
    August 2, 2007
    The size of their bosoms and underpants notwithstanding, Starshine and her grandma have something cool in common. They both love…
  • Sinning Senators Are So Ho-Hum
    July 26, 2007
    Another senator (yawn) was caught with his pants down. Starshine ponders the nature of Capitol Hill canoodling.
  • Flights of Fancy
    July 12, 2007
    As summer vacations get airborne, Starshine pens a personal letter to first-class passengers everywhere.
  • Everything I Know About Men I Learned at Strip Clubs
    June 28, 2007
    A bus tour of Portland's all-nude strip clubs reveals something Starshine didn't expect - a rare glimpse into the male…
  • My First Fisticuffs: The Good, the Bad and the Bloody
    June 21, 2007
    After a boxing match at the Chumash Casino, featherweight Starshine Roshell takes a few jabs at this sweet science -…
  • Mancations
    June 7, 2007
    Starshine's husband would rather risk a concussion than spend Father's Day with her and their mutual children. Go figure.
  • Designer Vaginas
    May 24, 2007
    Talk about gilding the lily. Starshine explores why the fastest growing trend in plastic surgery is a cut, er, below.
  • Here’s the Buzz
    May 3, 2007
    On the same day scientists announced the mysterious disappearance of the nation's honeybees, Starshine Roshell actually found the little buggers.…
  • Shaking My Faith in Quad
    April 26, 2007
    College is supposed to be a place where the safety of childhood overlaps with the freedom of adulthood. But last…
  • A Week of Strong
    April 12, 2007
    Last weekend, like all weekends before it, I was confronted with a barrage of shame-inducing images: Fleshless twenty-somethings flitting along…
  • Aisles of Smiles
    March 28, 2007
    Lettuce? Yes. String cheese? Sure. But did you know there's bliss to be found in the aisles of a supermarket?
  • Numb and Number
    March 22, 2007
    I'm no stranger to sedation. As a teen, whenever the storm of adolescence would shudder through my soul and come…
  • Go With the Flow
    March 15, 2007
    It's the time of the week when Starshine Roshell talks about the time of the month. In her opinion, a…
  • If I Ran the Zoo
    February 28, 2007
    Starshine mixes some social commentary with a tribute to Dr. Suess on his birthday.
  • Going Gay
    February 22, 2007
    Inspired by Rev. Ted Haggard's miraculous conversion, Starshine Roshell confesses her boredom with heterosexuality and ponders the possibility of making…
  • Cold-Hearted or Hot-Blooded?
    February 15, 2007
    Starshine compares nutty astronauts and icy presidential candidates, asking 'How do we want our female leaders— passionate and unpredictable or…
  • Football’s All About the Outfits
    January 31, 2007
    With the Super Bowl looming, Starshine reminds us what football's really all about: The outfits.
  • Nipping Sniggers in the Bud
    January 25, 2007
    Starshine takes a cold, hard look at what's going on beneath women's blouses.
  • Not a Single Regret
    January 18, 2007
    Starshine chats with Bella DePaulo, Summerland resident and visiting professor at UCSB, about her new book, which explores the social…
  • Thank You For Coming, Now Get Out
    January 11, 2007
    Now that Shindig Season has passed, let's resolve to be better party guests this year by learning when to set…


  • Yule’s Jewels
    December 7, 2006
    We all know diamonds are the world's hardest natural substance, but the jewelry industry doesn't seem to believe it. Judging…
  • X Appeal
    November 30, 2006
    There are not a lot of things we, as a society, can learn from Rob Lowe. The Montecito resident can't…
  • Pole Positions
    November 22, 2006
    It started out as an innocent evening, with plans to meet a girlfriend for a local book-signing. But when it…
  • Floss This
    November 9, 2006
    I'm going to tell you a secret, but you have to promise it won't leave this page. Because it's kind…
  • Fertile Fashion
    November 2, 2006
    A recent study shows that women's style of dress changes throughout our menstrual cycles: We opt for more attractive outfits…
  • Diary of a Protest Virgin
    October 26, 2006
    Until this summer, I had never protested anything in my life. I hail from the Slacker generation, a group of…
  • Resignation Letter
    October 3, 2006
    I hereby resign from the News-Press. And since you no longer control what I say and how I say it,…

To publish one of my columns in your magazine or website, contact me.

My columns are collected in three lovely books, which make a SPLENDID gift for wives, friends, book clubs, hostesses, and anyone who likes to laugh!
Keep Your Skirt On
Wife on the Edge
Broad Assumptions
The contents of this site are © 2015 Starshine Roshell. All rights reserved. Site design by Comicraft.