Friday, April 29, 2011

So Royal

In order to celebrate this massive pop culture moment, I chose some of my favorite photos from the wedding that I've seen so far. What? I miss London. Give me a few blog posts about Londonish things alright?


 How stunning.
 Pink tie. Her dad's got style. I will be the same when I'm his age. And I love all the hats in the background. Americans must have revolted against the Brits tradition of hats during the war too and I think we are a less fashionable nation because of it.

 She looks amazing, like a regal princess should look. I mean, it's not over the top, it fits her perfectly, he looks awesome in all his regalia. I want to be their friend. He's only a year older than I am. It's not completely outside the realm of possibility. Don't push the rinse cycle on my dreams.

They always look flawless and look at them now. It makes me sick inside a little bit because they are so flawless. She's pregnant and she's in those heels and that hat. I want to be their friend too.
Imagine the dinner party with these folks. Talking about football, talking about being royal, talking about being a Spice Girl. Could there be a better dinner party? I don't think so.
Life goals list addendum: Dinner party with these four people. Hey, it could happen.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

A story of Ben, Ryan and Holly

I wish I was in London right now for a myriad of reasons. I will list three.

1. I want to go to Ben's Cookies in Covent Gardens and sit and watch the street performers. It's my favorite thing to do in London.
2. I want to see all the royal wedding mayhem for myself. I mean, this wedding is a global event. It's like the Olympics of romance and I wish I was there to see all the spectacle for myself.  You know, it's really fun to see all the coverage on TV and know that I lived within walking distance of Westminster Abbey less than a year ago. I mean it. We lived like 10 blocks from there. How amazing.
3. I need a break and going to London would be such a great break.

I love that place and I kinda feel like a part of me is still over there somewhere. Probably in line still for more of Ben's coconut cookies.

You know, going there was really the trip of a lifetime. I mean, I'm a New Yorker at heart - New York is my favorite place on Earth to be. And everyone says "Oh you love New York so of course you love London." And yeah, that's true, but I think there's more to it than that. London has a different vibe. It's more international without feeling intentional about it. New York is full of so many cultures and I truly believe it's the greatest city in the world, but there's something easy about London. It's just different. I wish I could put my finger on exactly what it is. Maybe it has to do with the fact that when I lived in London I was mostly roaming around the city freely all day, doing whatever I wanted and I didn't have to worry about real life at all.
But you know what, as I type that phrase "worry about real life," I am struck by the fact that all my playing in London was shaping the real life I'm living currently. It's changed the way I think about things.

So, I say cheers to the royal couple. And cheers to London. And cheers to my Holly. And cheers to Bens Cookies. (Don't worry gang, I've emailed them recommending a Bens be put in New York)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Crap. I'm gonna watch it.

Did you watch The Voice tonight? Well, I caught the last hour of it and I'm gonna keep watching it. Here's why:
Tarralyn Ramsey and Frenchie Davis and being mentored by Christina.
Now listen. I think the premise of this show is actually quite stupid when it all boils down to it. Having them on teams and stuff? Come on. That's a stunt. And really, the whole "not looking at them when they sing" thing is dumb too. Susan Boyle anyone? They looked at her when she sang. She sold more albums than all four of the judges last albums combined.
But really. Taralyn Ramsey is one of my favorite singers. I've worn out her albums. And Frenchie from Idol? I saw her in Rent. She's one of the best singers that Idol has ever lost. The fact that they are "stand there and sing" types of singers and they are going to be mentored by Christina, who is also a "stand there and sing" type of singer...actually, perhaps they will mentor her and show her to quit all the techno crap and just sing.

This got me thinking though. Couldn't we all use a little mentoring? Someone to show us the way? I think so. I do hesitate with this thought though. See, when you realize you need mentoring and you go looking for them, do you settle with the first person or people you land on? Say, for instance, that you need vocal mentoring. Do you go to the first voice teacher you find and just call it at that? What if they aren't the right teacher for you? Being a mentor is something serious and when you're put in that position, I think it should be taken seriously. I've seen people be "mentored" by someone and it end up leading them way off track just because they were too eager to be mentored. Does that make any sense at all?

I worry sometimes when people say they are being mentored by others. Being mentored means opening up yourself to the "wisdom" that you think only they can supply and that's a scary thought sometimes. Especially if they are the first one you land on. My sister is a singer and she picked what colleges to go to dependent upon who was going to be her vocal coach and mentor. Perhaps we should  use such discretion in our own lives?
I had a friend who I looked up to and I thought I could really learn a lot from. I thought they were going to help shape who I was, who I could be, and how I used my talents and abilities. But it turned out that they were just the first person that landed in my life and they weren't actually the right fit for me. Because I know me and I know who I want to be. They couldn't get me there. They could get me to someplace adjacent to there and someplace similar to there, but not actually to where I needed to be. I'm not trying to be cryptic, the subject of the mentoring isn't important really. I just think that sometimes, people should really think things through. I'm glad I did.
Kinda like the people who chose Blake Shelton tonight over Adam Levine. Perhaps they should have thought it through further.

Sidenote: It was a good night for female singers. Pia was on Dancing with the Stars and she blew everyone away. She's just a flawless vocalist. She's actually who the people on The Voice should aspire to be like. Flawless.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Privacy

I was recently asked what the most private thing I was willing to admit was and that got me thinking, is there anything in my life that's so private that I'd have to be willing to admit it?
I've come to the conclusion that I don't really think there is. I mean, if you want to know something, just ask right? Why lie? Why keep up any false pretense?
I mean really, I've posted over 600 of these blog posts and is there really anything I haven't covered? I've admitted just about as much as a person can admit about themselves and what they like. I've talked about Disney, talked about Britney, talked about Charlie Brown and talked about everything on television. What stone has been left unturned?
Currently, I'm watching Game of Thrones if you must know.

The real question here is: Are there things that we shouldn't admit? Are there things that we should keep private or are the burdens of privacy too much to bear? I don't really know. For me, keeping things private just makes reality muddier and murkier. Perhaps that's why I'm a blurter, because I get so tired of things being muddy that I just want to blurt it all out and clear the air in an instant, no matter the fallout. This was most recently best personified on Brothers and Sisters last night...of course it was. Why would it not be? There's a reason it's my favorite show on television. But still, I guess my answer would be that having things secret doesn't help anyone actually. Plus, it makes pulling off the metaphorical bandaid that much more difficult. The longer things stay secretive, the harder it becomes right?
Anyway, I didn't have a good answer to that question. Once you've rambled on about the brilliance of a song from Charlie Brown, what's left to say?

Saturday, April 23, 2011

The Normal Heart

I don't "fan out" too often but on nights like tonight, it was appropriate. See, "fanning out" is like "geeking out" and I usually don't do that after shows. Yes, I admire performers but ultimately, they're just people that have cooler jobs than we do. 
Having said that, I've been waiting for tonight for weeks. The new production of The Normal Heart, a play from the late 80's, was coming to Broadway and usually that doesn't mean a whole lot to me, but the cast was what made me excited. 
First, Lee Pace was in the cast. Lee is someone who I loved in Pushing Daisies and in The Fall. You're probably familiar with both of these if you've kept up with this blog at all. Pushing Daisies being one of my favorite shows from television and The Fall being one of the most beautiful films I've ever seen. So I was excited to see him. (cut to actually seeing him on the street before the show...tallest and skinniest man alive. I wanted to take him to dinner, make him eat donuts and talk about The Fall. Alas, I just saw him in the play. 

But let's be honest. The real reason here was that Luke MacFarlane, aka Scotty from Brothers and Sisters, aka my favorite show on television. How could I not go? How could I not go "fan out" and tell him how much I loved the show (both on stage and on TV)? How could I not? And so I did. Nice guy too.

Ultimately, it wasn't about either of them though. The Normal Heart was really an incredible piece of theatre. As the second act was coming to a close, it was like I was kicked in the stomach, that's how moving it was. Actually, amidst the sniffles and tears in the theater, one guy was so moved that he had to leave the theater because he was so emotional. I wasn't that guy, but it was incredibly moving. The play was written not too long after the AIDS epidemic hit and claimed the lives of far too many people, so the point of view it had was all first-hand. The performances were all really quite incredible from a cast that included Ellen Barkin and Joe Montello (which might not mean anything to most people but he directed Wicked and won a Tony for Angels in America so he's big in the theatre world). 
AIDS has been something that I've cared about for a while now. Living in suburban America, it's not something that you really deal with. It's not all around you all the time and it seems to be this thing that happens in New York and San Francisco. But I remember the first summer I spent in New York was important for a lot of reasons, my own awareness of the impact of AIDS being one of them. Never before had I known anyone that had AIDS or known people who had lost friends and family to AIDS. Since then, I've donated money when I could and in a few weeks, I will be a part of the AIDS walk because my company will have a team. We work with a lot of AIDS and HIV patients so being a part of the walk is important for us. So perhaps my heightened awareness and compassion toward people who have been affected by AIDS is why I was so moved by the play, but either way, it was really tremendous.

On a side note, it stands to be mentioned that my play-going buddy Stuart and I went to not one hole-in-the-wall diner tonight but two and had some pretty terrific food if I do say so myself. 
It was one of those nights that just couldn't happen anywhere but here. 

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Disney might just rule my life

After writing my Masters thesis on Disney animated movie musicals, I implemented a bit of a Disney-break in my life. Now that period is over and I've begun listening to the On The Record album once again (if you're unfamiliar, familiarize yourself with it. Stunning arrangements of classic songs). I was struck by the lyrics to one of the songs that I usually thought was rather dippy, but in light of where I am in life, they suddenly made sense. Strange how that happens right?

"What I love most about rivers is, you can't step in the same river twice. The water's always changing, always flowing. But people, I guess, can't live like that, we all must pay a price to be safe: we lose our chance of ever knowing what's around the riverbend, waiting just around the riverbend."

I'm fascinated now. In my life, Pocahontas has always been characterized by purple leaves and gold crap flying in the wind and an ugly talking tree. But I think there's something rather profound about the lyrics there. My favorite line is "we all must pay a price to be safe: we lose our chance of ever knowing what's around the riverbend." In the song, the phrasing is in such a way that the words are kinda lost and while that makes for a better song, it disguises the message a bit. What's the price we're paying to be safe and content? To be stagnant? To be just like everyone else? To be what we think we're supposed to be? To be carried away by every safe fad or safe face? I think it takes a lot more courage to be yourself and to take the risk on being just who you are and not what you think pleases others or what you think you're supposed to be. Who am I supposed to be? I dunno, I gave up on those thoughts a long time ago, but the real question is who am I really? I've got dreams and things I want to accomplish in this life and I'm going for them, sometimes at the risk of being safe. How much more interesting life is when we are just ourselves and don't try to be anyone else?
Deep feelings brought to the surface from a Pocahontas song...just as the wind brought up all of those purple leaves and gold craps to blow through my perfectly piecey hair. Sidenote: Remember in that movie when Pocahontas jumped off that cliff and dove into the water? Adrenaline junkie. What was she doing? Show off. That's what she was. A show off with perfect hair.

Monday, April 18, 2011

I've got a problem

Please understand that what I'm about to say is highly controversial and not to be implemented before talking it over with your doctor. Girl Scout cookies are the missing food group.
You know, I've been so good the past few years. I haven't had a Girl Scout cookie in, literally, years. But now that I work in an office, I've found that I'm privy to officey-type things...such as buying cookies from a coworker. So I did as every responsible coworker does and I bought three boxes of Samoas...God's cookies. 
So the next week, I decided that I would go and cut the carbs out of my life right? Sexy by summer and all that crap. Well, the cookies arrived today...problem.
Big problem.
See the other thing about Girl Scout cookies is that they're meant to be eaten a box at a time. You know it's true. Don't act all healthy on me here. These cookies are meant to be eaten a box at a time. Put a box of Thin Mints in the freezer for the night, pull them out and start eating them and tell me I'm wrong. Next thing you know, you've taken OUT that box. It's GONE. And you know what? We don't feel bad about it do we? No. It's like a sugary badge of honor and we can't wait to be awarded that honor again tomorrow. That's just how it goes with these. 
So they're a problem in my life. Usually, I just have five big problems in my life, but now, I have 8...well, 7 and a half. I stopped myself once the box was half empty...oops. 
So really, they should be their own food group. And now I'm gonna have to work out or something all night long to feel alright about myself because I've been trying so hard to stay away from evil foods (basically everything that's delicious). Sure, I crack and I cave...usually once a week. Could it be that I've already caved for this week? Could it be?! Nah. 

Sunday, April 17, 2011

My old friend Arthur

Are you watching Camelot? You should be.

You know, there have been quite a few movies made about Arthur and his knights and each one is trying to reinvent how the story is told. Well, on Starz, the same network that has brought us the uber-violent and uber-awesome Spartacus,they have a new series called Camelot. I've always loved this story and so I decided I would give this series a chance and I'm so glad I did.
There's just something about this classic story that they are telling in a semi-realistic way that's so interesting. I love when all the components of the story come together, except not as you think they will. I think what I really love is the fact that it's so well made. That's what I love. It's like getting to watch a piece of a movie every week. That's become the trend on the cable networks and I think it's spectacular. The greatest of these is Mad Men of course, but you've got shows like Spartacus, Camelot and Game of Thrones that have taken the epic genre of film and translated it onto television.
Plus, let's be honest. Who doesn't love a good battle scene each week? With Lord of the Rings, we had to wait an entire year for it. Now we get Arthur, Merlin and the Knights of the Round (though we're not there yet in the story) each week.
This is why I love television. This is why I go home and watch it. This is why I devote so much time to it. Because if I didn't, I'd be missing out on some of the finest artistry in entertainment. It gives me the drive to give my best in whatever I do as well. Plus, Merlin is just so damn cool.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Lighting strikes twice

The weather outside is dreadful currently. It's raining the type of rain that's gross, where it's not even, it pours and then it sprinkles. And of course the wind is blowing everyone's umbrellas inside out so that's fun to watch...til it happens to you.
I'm walking and looking up at the Empire State Building. Cue flash of light and explosion of sound. I saw the lightning bolt hit the rod at the top of the building. Now listen, that's a normal occurrence. It happens whenever there's a storm. It's the tallest thing around and it has a giant lightning rod on top. But still, when I saw it happen, I was done for the day. I got on the train and came straight home. I'm not staying out in that.
I will say though, the burst of light, the way it illuminated all of the low cloud cover, the way the streets lit up for just that half a second - it was all kinda surreal.
I had a moment last night that kinda resembled that in my own life. I was working on the new issue of BLEEP and I took a minute to look at all the spreads there on my computer screen and it hit me just how big this thing has become. This issue has an article in it written by someone in Moscow. Moscow! How incredible is that? It was this moment where the magnitude of this dream of mine was put into perspective for the first time I think.
When I sat here and started thinking about it, there's been one other real lightning bolt moment in the past month. I was named Designer of the Year by the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association. Just typing that kinda blows my mind really. It's not something I ever thought would happen but it did and I can say that it happened because of a year's worth of loving what I did every single day. It was hard to tear me away from the office because I loved it so much.
I hope to have that again one day, but until then, I have this magazine that's proving to be bigger and more important to me than I thought it would be. More than that, it's important to more people than just me, which makes it something of value. Something can be important to someone and that's where it ends, but now that others are buying into the vision and casting their own visions into this BLEEP magazine pool, it's become something of value.
So the Empire State Building is alright post-lightning bolt and so am I. I think I'm actually doing better post-bolt.

The only thing to fear...

I would like to talk about fear.
This is a picture from an upcoming 3D movie where, apparently, sharks are eating people in bikinis. I thought we'd had this already, but apparently, we needed a bloodier version. This terrifies me and the thought behind this is part of the reason why I can't go swimming out in the ocean. That and the fact that a giant squid would be able to sense my fear from a hundred miles away and would come to devastate my existence. Sorry oceans. I'm through with you.
Fear is a funny thing to me because so many times, we are irrationally fearful of things. And usually, those irrational things we're afraid of are not founded in anything. There's no reason for us to freak out or have a panic attack about it. It's like we all forget what we're told when we're young: Just count to three and breathe. Don't they teach puppets that on Sesame Street? I mean, really.
Well there are things that I'm fearful of. Sure there are. But I find that as I get older and I get up the nerve to confront these fears, I just have to count to three, breathe and rip the bandaid off. Just do it. Just go for it. Just say it. Just whatever. Whatever it is that needs to happen. It doesn't make it any less scary really,but it makes it mine. I am the one that's going for it. I'm the one that's saying it. I'm the one that's admitting it. I'm the one in control. Oprah says stuff like this all the time. She's always saying we need to take control of our own destiny and all that but I think there's some truth to it. We aren't these helpless creatures who are existing in a forlorn land. We have the power to control ourselves in this life. We have the ability to go for things when we want them or to confront things when we're scared. We are a far more powerful people than we give ourselves credit for oftentimes.
That doesn't change what I said about the ocean. I'm still not going out there. Beaches are fine, but I'm serious. There is probably an army of giant squids with eyes the size of dinner plates that are plotting my demise. I refuse to give them the satisfaction. I am the one in control. Not the squids.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Dancing through my TV

I would like to talk about TV. It's the strongest mass medium of communicating with people that we have today.. Tonight on Dancing With The Stars, it's usually about being ridiculous and making a scene. But tonight, it was more than that. It was about making tv thats worth watching. There was a giant live orchestra, something you only really see on tv in I Love Lucy episodes when Rickys at the club. It was really quite spectacular. Then the costumes were actually quite beautiful (for the most part) and the scenes they created were equally as good. 
You know I'm not just the hugest fan of this show but what I am a fan of is when TV does what it and only it can do and thats present a moment that's unique and something you can't get anywhere else. Thats what this show did this week.
I also never watch the entire episode but because the music was so good, I couldn't help myself. David Garrett is quite the violin player and as much as I dont really care for Catherine Jenkins, she sounded really great. And you know you love the song from the Zales commercial. You know you do and the arrangement of that song was awesome. (the arrangements of the songs were so good because they were the group Bond's arrangements. If you dont know them, look them up. They're tremendous.)
It was a good night for TV. Fills you with wonder and makes you feel good. Thats all you can ask for on a Monday night.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Part Two of my life began last night

I never thought I'd be writing this so early in my life. I mean, I really thought I had such a long road ahead of me but that has proven to be untrue. Last night, I entered the second stage of my life.
Some people describe their life in chapters and I am certainly one of those people, but just as the Harry Potter series is one big story with 7 books and many chapters within each book, so are we right? Well, I started the next book of my life last night.
Please understand that all my life, I've been searching. Searching for something very specific, something of meaning, something of perfection. And for the past almost 28 years, I've been searching. Last night, I found what I was searching for. After almost three decades of concentrated effort, I found it.

The perfect vanilla cupcake candle.

And in the most unlikely of places. You'd think it would be a boutique or someplace undiscovered. But no. Right there inside a Target was the perfect vanilla cupcake candle.

It's an amazing feeling really. Knowing that you've found what you've been looking for. It feels a bit like an emotional exhale really. And then you know that in your next breath, something new is going to begin. I don't know what exactly, but something new.
It's strange not knowing. What will I chase after? What will I search for now that I've found the object of my lifelong hunt? All the sub-par vanilla candles I went through has led to this. It's like I've been trekking through Mordor and now I've finally destroyed the ring that's been plaguing me. But unlike Frodo, I'm not gonna go get on a boat and sail off into the whatever he sailed off into. No. That's not my style. I'm gonna chase after the next thing. What that will be, I don't know, but I'm going.
This is an exciting Part Two. This is a thrilling Part Two. This is an American Idol-less Part Two (with the ridiculous ousting of the best singer that's been in the competition in probably three years, I'm officially done, deleted it from my DVR and I will have nothing to do with a show that celebrates an American public that votes for Taylor Hicks Part Two because he has a beard. Absolutely not. It's rubbish.) It's a semi-carb-less Part Two (I try really hard not to eat them...I try. I'm only human though and sometimes, cupcakes look too good) Which brings me back to the reason why I'm here in the first place. The perfect vanilla cupcake candle.
Part two now begins.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Bewitched, bothered and bewildered all over again

I'm listening to my internet radio, something I do daily, and it's on the 90's station, again, something I listen to daily. Now I'm pretty educated in the 90's music, after all, I lived through it and it's my favorite, but one of the songs that popped up today not only surprised me but also made me smile from ear to ear.
Do you remember B*Witched? No not the TV show that tried to replace one Darren with another Darren. The Euro-pop singing group B*Witched? Well, their song 'Cest La Vie' came on and I have to be honest, it made me smile because I haven't heard it in I can't remember how long.
Here's what you must understand about this group. Not only were they European, but they were a quartet of Irish girls. Irish. That means they had it extra hard because they were having to compensate for not being British. Everyone loves a good British group or singer, but Irish? The Corrs only had one hit. Why? I'm not saying it was because they're Irish...but...
The other thing you must know about B*Witched (besides the ridiculous asterisk in their name) is that they tried to fuse Irish folk music and 90's bubblegum pop together...it was the most ridiculous thing you've ever seen in your life but you couldn't turn away. It was like "I can't believe they're LITERALLY doing an Irish jig at this music festival."
So my smile came from seeing it all in my head all over again and imagining these girls jigging between performances from Britney and *NSync (Another obnoxious asterisk by the way). Please do yourself a favor and watch this. It's at about the 2 minute mark where they begin to jig. It'll be a much needed jolt of ridiculousness to your day because let's face it, we all could use a jolt (or a jig) a day.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Giving honor to whom honor is due

During a random wandering of my mind today, it became clear to me that I have neglected to give the proper credit to some of the characters that have shaped who I am. Honoring those who have helped us to become who we are is such a good practice and I try to do that, but I have neglected a few very important ones. For this, I am sorry and I will do my best to remedy that at once.

First, I must recognize Penelope Pitstop for teaching me perseverance. Every time she would compete against the rest of the Wacky Racers, she had such obstacles to face. Couple that with the fact that it was the 60s and she was a woman. Talk about having to overcome adversity. And she did, week in and week out and though she wasn't always the victor, she still gave it her all each week. Thank you Penelope. Thank you.

Our families teach us so much and at this time, I must recognize a family that taught me to live my life freely. Yakko, Wakko and Dot, thank you so much for showing me that living life by the seat of your pants and bursting into impromptu songs are a normal and acceptable way to live. Without you, I think I'd be a stuffy fool, afraid to branch out and sing the ingredients in ice cream, all the countries in the world, or all the words in the English language. You also taught me that it's a great big universe and we're all really puny, we're just tiny little specs about the size of macaroni. For that, I am forever grateful.

Who are we without our friends right? I must also thank one of Yakko, Wakko and Dot's friends, Slappy the Squirrel. Without her, I wouldn't have come to accept a sharp wit and the God-given ability to not take crap from anyone. Together, these two things have become a hallmark of my life and I owe it all to you Slappy. At a young age, you taught me to tell it like it is. You also may be responsible for planting the seed that became my obsession with 1969, when you and Skippy went to Woodstock to hear The Who. I thank you and the cast of Hair thanks you (I gave them a lot of money what with ticket sales and albums and such)

Next, I must thank my Saturday morning companion. Someone who taught me what it is to be a southern gentlemen. Gambit. Thank you for showing me how to treat a lady, as well as also being the root of my love of outerwear. Plus, you taught me the important of throwing playing cards when enraged, something that has come in handy on many occasions. Actually, I think you taught a lot of my friends that same thing because a lot of them tend to throw cards in fits of rage when we're playing. I think I speak for all of them when I say thank you kind sir.

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, I have to thank Baby Plucky for teaching me to be obnoxious. Again, I speak for all of my friends when I say thank you for that.

Whew. I feel better. I really needed to get that off my chest. I needed them to know how much I appreciate them and how much they've taught me. I know that I am who I am today because of their leading.


This post is dedicated to all of you that remember when cartoons used to be good and were quality shows. 

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Mugatu did it again

There are a great many things one could do on a Sunday afternoon. You could sit outside with friends, you could run errands, you could take a long walk, or you could stumble upon a Britney music video block on FUSE, stop everything you're doing and just relax and enjoy. Can you guess which of those I'm currently doing?
And see, I had every intention of changing the channel. Every intention of being productive. Every intention of adding something to society today. Then Oops came on.

So here I still sit, watching the Oops video after a slew of about ten other videos, relaxing and happy and you know what? I'm fine with it. I think it's a good use of my time actually. Who takes time to relax these days? We're all so busy, always going, always filling our time with people and places (most of which probably don't matter) and we never take time to just be alone and relax. It's like recharging a battery right? Some people think that's what sleep is for and I agree to an extent, but what sleep doesn't do for me is allow my brain to relax. Britney did that today for me.

Even Mugatu said we needed to relax and everyday we're reminded to take a little time to enjoy the view. I don't understand why more people don't allow themselves to do that. Maybe we're afraid that by sitting and doing nothing, we're being as unproductive as that sounds? We marvel at our own productivity don't we? We feel so great when we're productive. But to me, taking time for yourself is productive in just a completely different way.
I live in Manhattan, the epitome of the go-go-go mentality, it originated here, and I can tell you that the people you see who are the happiest are the ones that are sitting in the sun, enjoying the day with a cocktail and a friend, or the ones that are relaxing while reading a book (or in this city, a tablet) The people who are going-going-going are the ones who look pissed off walking down the street and who have this look of frightening determination when the subway door is closing on them. They are the people you don't want to mess with because deep down, you know that all the really need to do is relax.
So thanks Brit. I'm relaxed today and I'll give you the credit.
P.S. - Your new album is awesome from start to finish.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Give me one moment in time

Please tell me you've seen the clip from last night's Jimmy Fallon? Please.
Well, he, along with Stephen Colbert, a surprise guest appearance by Taylor Hicks, the Knicks dancers and a driver's side car door performed the web sensation "Friday" and let me tell you, it was everything that's wonderful about television.
See, it could have just been a performance to make fun of the song and that would have been funny perhaps, but by continuing to up the ante and add the most random characters into the mix, they created a moment, not to mention, this is the first relevant thing Taylor Hicks has ever done in his life.
If you haven't watched it, please do. It's the reason why television is the most wonderful form of media because there, in front of a live audience, moments are made. Oprah fine-tuned the art of the 'moment' and now, Jimmy Fallon has taken his cue. The live performance of the song took a tired moment of laughable internet culture and made it matter. It's as if he was able to take all the ridiculousness that is this song and make it tangible on the stage (I'm talking to you Taylor Hicks).
I like moments. I feel like life should be full of them. I now realize how much that last sentence sounded like a poster you'd see in a middle school with a black and white photo of something non-related in the middle of it. But moments are what life is made of, well, a life of meaning at least. I mean, didn't Whitney say it best?
You know that's my favorite Whitney Houston song? Moment in Time. Not only is it the kind of sweeping, self-affirming, overly-optimistic ballad that just doesn't come around anymore, but it was also the theme from the Olympics and we all know how I feel about the Olympics. It's the sort of fatal combination that does me in every time. I especially love her performance of the song on the Grammys. Please allow yourself to have a moment, be inspired and listen to her at the end of that song. She's every bit as triumphant as the people who won those gold medals.
So I'm a fan of the moments. That's the moral of the story. Especially the moments that make you feel as triumphant as a gold medal winner. Now please watch this Jimmy Fallow clip. It's just awesome.

Friday, April 1, 2011

My Oprah moment for today

You know I love a full-circle moment. I'm very Oprah in that way. Well, just now, I've had one.
When I woke up this morning, I had a song stuck in my head that had no business being there. "She Wolf" by Shakira. Why that song would be in my head when I woke up in the morning is beyond me, but it was there and the entire way to work, I had to keep myself from howling on the train.
Well, just now, eight hours later, I'm in my office and my office-mate is listening to some music on his computer. What song comes on?! Yes. It did. Why would that song come on? Who listened to that song? Of all the songs in the world...why that one? But there it was.
I just love when things come full circle and you don't have to do anything to make it happen. Even if it is that dreadful ode-to-Tejano-Twilight that she sang. The one good thing that came from that song was the video where she was in the cage and she showed the world that no one, and I mean no one, will out-bend her. She's the MOST bendy. Pheobe's got nothing on her.Other than that, nothing good came from that...well, now this full circle moment has. So something good did come from it. Glass-half-full people! Glass-half-full.

This foolish day

April Fools Day is lost on me. I don't get the appeal. I mean, when you're a kid, there's something fun about a day when you can put a fake spider in the teacher's desk or something, but about the time you hit age 12, April Fools starts to lose its appeal.
Why 12? Because that's when the jokes start to become less funny and more hurtful. Right? Once you're in junior high, it's like we lose all our logical sense that our parents are trying to teach us and we just rip into anyone in the name of this Fools day. I understand that there's this whole movement against bullying and I am one hundred percent backing that. Coming from someone who was bullied, no kid should have to go through that. Having said that, being bullied also shaped who I am, gave me my take-no-prisoners personality and gave me my wonderful sense of spite toward people who are inconsiderate, unimportant or all-around stupid. So no, I wouldn't change that, but I'm all for coddling this generation and pacifying them further. It's like we don't want our kids to go through anything in life anymore right?
(Again, bullying is bad and one day, I will get my revenge on those who bullied me. They will be written about in my memoir and during an interview someplace, I WILL NAME NAMES. This serves as a formal warning)
But back to this day. What's the point again? Who actually celebrates this day with any sort of gusto? And if you're a person who celebrates this day, why would you waste your time on it? What good is it doing anyone for this day to exist?
Maybe I'm just upset because today, April 1st, it snowed and rained on me on my way into work this morning. This Texas boy doesn't know what to do with snow in April. Shouldn't everyone be in shorts and playing sand volleyball at this point? Granted, having seasons in New York is so much better than the alternative of having zero seasons in Texas. But I digress...
April Fools Day is a rather pointless holiday, the likes of which I will not celebrate or condone. And to illustrate the pointlessness of this day, I included this equally pointless picture in this blog. This is my digital protest.