Friday, September 02, 2005

The Case for Hot, Handy (Around the House) Men

As much as I don't want to admit it, I did plan my whole entire day so I could stay home this afternoon and watch the “Gorgeous Men of Decorating” episode on Oprah.

Yeah, I know. I can't decide what the sad part is - not having any decorative know-how whatsoever on my part, or using said lack of decorative know-how as an excuse to ogle hot men in tool belts wielding drills, paint brushes, and wall demolition equipment. I do know for sure, though, that all the ladies were screaming as if Oprah had brought out Brad Pitt, Jude Law, Olivier Martinez, AND Usher, all at once.

Okay, on to the hotties:

- Carter Oosterhouse: I'm sorry, but any pretension that I may have about home decorating just disappeared when this guy came on. I mean, yeah, Vern Yip was also on, and even I was surprised by how cute he turned out to be, but, dang, Carter was just so yummy that I wanted to dip him in coconut icing and... um... where was I? Anyway, he's also a pretty decent handyman, has a great eye for detail, and collaborates nicely with decorators. His personality's pretty likable, too.

- Andrew Dan-Jumbo: Yes, the British accent is sexy, and so is the tool belt. (I, personally, have a weakness for multiethnic hapa-kine men, and if you've ever been to Europe you'll be surprised about how hot the African men are over there.) For me, however, what really sent me over the edge was his professionalism and competence: He's not out to change anyone's house from top to bottom, and he'll actually say hi to your husband, but he does know how to make the most practical adjustments (fixing a safety railing and replacing a drain, for starters) and he sure knows how to build his own furniture. He does strike me as the family-way type, though: Witness the adorable playroom set that he made for the daughters of the fan he helped out on this show. Seriously, any guy could make a storage unit, but a guy who pays so much pain-staking attention to making a storage unit that looks like a dollhouse or a play kitchen for a little girl has got to be the kind of guy who can't wait to be a father. And any guy who actually names his cat “Oprah Winfrey” will always get major points from me, even if he does have a girlfriend.

- Thom Filicia: He looked a tad puffy today, but there's a part of me that has always wanted to believe the rumors about him actually being that into women as much as he is with men - and this episode is part of the reason why, at least because he threatened to run away with the woman who wrote to Oprah asking for him. (Hee.) The Queer Eye wit is evident, but his basic carpentry and home-improvement skills are actually awesome - gotta love him wielding the power tools and paint rollers - and I like his choice of colors for his home makeover. I also appreciated the fact that he did a great job of reconciling the preferences of the husband and the wife and working with the furnishings they already had, even though I felt like he did go a tad overboard with the world-traveler Pier 1 doodads.

- Nate Berkus: Of all the TV home-makover experts out there, I've always felt like my own taste and approach is closer to Nate's than anyone else's - he's not totally OTT, but he does find a nice balance between Zen minimalism and old-school decorating. If you wanted him to do a romantic bedroom, for example, he wouldn't overpower you with silk shantung and rose petals all over your bed (unlike that one female decorator Oprah hired to do one of those ”sexy bedroom” makeovers, who even added some massage oil and Nora Roberts paperbacks for good measure - dang, why not throw in some furry handcuffs and a whip while you're at it, lady?); instead, he'll do subtle things with color and texture and even lighting to alter the ambience. I just wish that he'd exercise more practicality, though; in his early makeovers he was able to incorporate things that he and the homeowners could agree on, but lately he's been doing a lot more gutting and throwing out. (I mean, dude: that Denny's booth in Jerry O'Connell's apartment? You could've just reupholstered that, and it still would have worked. Or at least given it to me.) I still give him props for surviving the tsunami and holding it together after he lost his partner in Thailand, though, so I'll cut him some slack.

- Ty Pennington: He wasn't on this episode (he was on last week, with Clay Aiken) and I don't really find anything sexy about him (beefcake shots notwithstanding), but I just wanted to mention him because I'm warming up to his home-decorating style, as well - very hip and West Coast without being too cheesy. His carpentry doesn't have the same artistry as Andrew Dan-Jumbo's, but he does put a lot of heart into his projects - which is why I like him best in Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. I also have to admit that I'm one of the few women in the world whose idea of a Ty Pennington fantasy involves him marching into my bedroom... so he could point the bullhorn at my head and start screaming at me to “FIX! THIS! APARTMENT! NOW!” After which we'd sit down for decaf and discuss how he's coping with the ADHD. Sorry, ladies, but I guess that means more for you.

Now would be a good time for me to mention that I should save up for basic cable so I could ogle more hot men on home makeover shows. Until then, I'm going to have to figure out what it will take for Oprah to get Dave Lieberman and Tyler Florence on her show.

Or Christopher Kimball, even. But only if he keeps his shirt on.


Jen said...

Ewww. Christopher Kimball shirtless. Now there's a visual I didn't need.

meimei said...

And speaking of PBS hosts who have yet to be invited on Oprah... I just noticed that she also didn't invite the guys from the new edition of This Old House for this episode, either. Ahem.