Saturday, February 28, 2009

Confessions of a Non-Teenage Drama Queen

Lazy Saturday

Confession: On weekends when I have no social engagements lined up that require me to look presentable, I channel my inner super-low-maintenance gal and end up dressing like the "before" women on What Not to Wear. Or like my brothers.

Exhibit A: Today, I was wearing old red sweatpants that are too short and too wide, paired with a ratty Nike tee that has a hole in the back. Nathan, thanks for your castaways. (And no, he didn't give me a T-shirt with a hole in it. I did that myself. Somehow.)

Exhibit B: When I needed to head out into the cold (at least there was sunshine), I swapped out the sweats for jeans and threw on an oversized hoodie once belonging to Joel. Because it's warm and awesome.

Homestar Runner
belongs in everyone's wardrobe.

No makeup, no hair-brushing (ponytails are wondrous things), no jewelry. Backpack instead of a purse. It's freeing, just letting go. But not every day. That would be depressing.

Tomorrow I will be pretty. And hang out with 3-to-5-year-olds at church. I'm sure they appreciate my eyeshadow and ensemble coordination.

Dance Like It's 1963

Doesn't actress Ashley Leggat* look so much like Baby?
We had a different Johnny. A better one.

Dirty Dancing was fantastic. It was the movie come to life, with the most adorably impressive Baby convincing me that I'm missing out by not spending time on the stage anymore. Oh, and Johnny Castle. All the girls swooned. Because he was channeling Patrick Swayze. Which is weird; I don't generally spend much time swooning over the actor. At all.

Awkward comment of the night: "Too bad Patrick Swayze's gonna die soon."

If you don't like the movie, you won't like the stage show. There were word-for-word, move-for-move nostalgic hugs on that stage. And they were counting on the audience being cult fans. "Nobody puts Baby in a corner" received cheers and wild applause. I may have been part of such rowdiness.

The set design is what won me over. It was simple and effortless and still a little dazzling. And the costumes made me happy. I think I have new fashion muses. Yep, I'm going good girl circa 1963.

I want to dance.

*Ashely Leggat was in Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen. Back when she was blond. So was Megan Fox (Transformers). And Alison Pill (Milk). It seems that Lindsay Lohan walks away from that one with the least promising career. Funny how life works.

Roll Up What Rim?

Caffeine-free update: It's my fourth day without a coffee or Diet Coke. And I have exhibited zero signs of withdrawal. I am super-relieved to know that my appreciation for said drinks is not linked to an addiction. Jitter- and headache-free.

I Am Woman

I've been both lazy and motivated in my writing life lately. I'm afraid I've mastered this uncomfortable balance. For those of you who want to cyber-stalk my writing elsewhere, I'm now a columnist over at

Check out my latest postings:
And thank you, dearest Dad, for coming up with my column's name: Pop Goes the Culture. I'll mention you in the acknowledgments of my first novel. And then I'll thank you at the Oscars. And when I'm super-rich, I'll buy you something ridiculously cool. Like a pottery wheel.

Shampoo in a Box

I received a box of shampoo in the mail this week. A box of bottles of shampoo, to be more specific. Because I'm such a trendsetter/icon in the blogosphere, I'm going to be testing the entire new Herbal Essences Hydralicious collection and giving my feedback. If you live near me and want free shampoo, I have coupons! Let's all have sexy hair, folks.

Everything's Amazing, Nobody's Happy

You've probably seen this. It's everywhere. But I'm posting this in case you haven't. Best Conan interview ever. The greatest comedy is based in truth.

P.S. If you're ever asked to choose between Leno and Letterman, the correct answer is ALWAYS Conan. Even once Fallon enters the ring.

Thursday, February 26, 2009


I understand if you're envious. I would be.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

YouTube Tuesday: Pancakes and Crack

I left my house at 5:30. To eat pancakes. I got home at 11. I am tired. While I was out, I decided to give up caffeine and aspartame-- my drugs of choice-- until March 8th (and donate the money saved to the Yonge Street Mission). I will not be fun tomorrow morning.

In honor of Pancake Tuesday...

Pingu is amazing. The creators were probably on crack.

And in honor of crack...

Your PSA of the day. It's even better than Whitney Houston's "crack is wack" moment.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Oscars 2009: The Good, the Bad and the Beyonce

Did you watch the Oscars last night? If not, never fear. You can relive it here. For the sake of time and/or your sanity, I won't chat about every little detail of every single award. But I can't promise this thing will be short, either.

And yes, there are links. For visuals.

(First, read my red-carpet rundown here.)


It's starting, it's starting....

It's a recessionista's dream. Oh, how the set design makes me smile. Critics can't agree on this, but I don't care. It's fun and fresh and campy and awkward.

Hugh. In a tux. With that accent. I melt. Unexpectedly. It's the self-deprecation. "I'm an Australian, playing an Australian in a movie called Australia...." I can't believe that I once lumped him into a category of men who wore sweatpants in public.

Singing to Kate Winslet: "I would swim a sea of human excrement." (Watch Slumdog Millionaire to make sense of the lyrics.)

The dancing. The song. The props. My inner theatre geek is totally won over. He makes Anne Hathaway cool. "I'm Wolverine!" [WATCH OPENING HERE]

To Mickey Rourke: "If you win, we switch to a 20-minute delay."

I kind of love this whole shake-up. I don't know what's coming next. Weird. Past winners announce the current nominees. Strangely heartfelt tributes.

Whoopi to Amy Adams: "It's not easy being a nun." Ha.

This is going to be a super-teary-eyed show. Man. These producers are BRILLIANT. People are crying before the first award is handed out.

Penelope Cruz wins. Shoot. I wanted Taraji.

Phone rings.
I miss Pene's speech, but don't really care. In fact, I end up missing all the writing stuff too. But I see Tina Fey look lovely. And it appears as though she and Steve Martin are being hilarious.

I have a crush on Milk's screenwriter. So I check out his acceptance speech on YouTube later. Yes, I know that it's pointless to have a crush on a gay man. Thanks, people. This was his FIRST screenplay. And he writes for Big Love. And he wore the greatest outfit at the Spirit Awards the night before. If I were a boy, I'd dress like him.

(Re: YouTube'd speech - HERE. I almost cried. "You are beautiful, wonderful creatures that are valued." Cyber-hug to Dustin Lance Black.)

Simon Beaufoy wins for Slumdog screenplay. The winning streak has begun.

Phone call done. I turn off the cell.

Jennifer Aniston and Jack Black chitchat. Producers cut to Angelina. Oh, drama-creation. I think they're adults. They can handle hanging out in the same massive room. (I like the little braid in Jen's hair. Remind me to braid mine someday soon.)

Wall-E! The director thanks his high-school drama teacher. I can't wait until I get to write an acceptance speech. So many random people to thank. Like Bono, Peter Jackson and the girl who told me my pants were too short in the sixth grade.

SJP and Daniel Craig. I'd rather be James Bond than Carrie Bradshaw. Okay, her dress is better on-stage. I love the stage. I'm in a really happy, non-critical mood right now. I'm giddy just thinking about movies.

Robert Pattinson and Amanda Seyfried. Romance in 2008. None of the clips are making me want to fall in love. Well, maybe the shot of Aaron Eckhart (who was also super-handsome at the Spirit Awards). Or the Slumdog kids. The clips of people screaming "I hate you" aren't helping the situation. Call me old-fashioned, but I'm not really into the love/hate thing. It's so junior high.

Natalie Portman and Ben Stiller. Ben as Joaquin. Amazing. Ron Howard also finds this amazing. [WATCH HERE] Too bad this very same make-fun-of-Joaquin Phoenix-skit was done at the Spirit Awards already. But with a foul-mouthed Batman added. I was probably the only viewer, so no biggie.

Cinematography: I say Slumdog. So does the Academy.

Jessica Biel is awkward. And is chuckling at her own non-funniness. Go back to Seventh Heaven. I'm having drama-class flashbacks. She's the know-it-all aspiring soap star.

Pineapple Express spoof. I love James Franco. (Oh, and if you ever watch PE, turn on the subtitles. I hear they're fantastic.) The Love Guru got its clip. Oh, but James Franco.... How I admire your stoner-brilliance. Funniest Oscar-montage clip EVER. I can't explain it here. I would destroy it. Best DP-involved presentation ever. Enter YouTube. [SERIOUSLY, WATCH]

(P.S. Yes, The Reader is about a young boy having sex with a Nazi. The Academy has crazy taste in art. And yes, it's a good movie.)

I nominate James Franco for host in 2010.

"The musical is back, ladies and gentlemen." Wait for it, folks.... [OR WATCH IT]

Beyonce?! GO HOME, SASHA FIERCE. You are not welcome here. A Gene Kelly line. A Grease medley?! Now Zac Efron is singing. With Vanessa. My poor brain. With Mamma Mia people. Huh. I expected more. Is that weird? Baz Luhrmann, you should have called Ewan and Nicole. Does Beyonce know that "At Last" isn't her song?

Dear, 2010 producers, Beyonce has overstayed her Oscar welcome. This is her third year of making me fake vomit. In her place, try asking AN ACTOR. Or A NOMINEE. Or ANYONE ELSE.

There are still A LOT of clips for a show that is apparently radically different from previous shows filled with clips. Hmm. I feel bad for Cuba Gooding Jr. Why do we keep reminding him that his career peaked with Jerry Maguire?!

I feel a Heath moment coming on. I hope I cry. Is that morbid?


Standing ovation. His gorgeous family. Brad's in tears. And Adrien Brody. And Anne. And Angelina. "On behalf of your beautiful Matilda."

Man on Wire wins. Another check mark for me. I'm still in a solemn post-Heath mood. And then the wire dude balances his Oscar on his chin. WHAT?!

Short Documentary was another random non-correct guess. The winner says "Lucky me" in a tone that sounds suspiciously sarcastic.

Post-production stuff. The Dark Knight should finally start picking up. Clip of Wanted. Highly recommended if you like crazy-creative gunfire. And/or James McAvoy.

Will Smith. In describing visual effects, takes a beautiful jab at Mr. Pretty: "They can take Brad Pitt and turn him into a garden gnome." Hear, hear.

Visual Effects: Benjamin Button! Yep, I got that one right too.

Sound Editing. The Dark Knight? Yes? Please, Academy.... [drum roll] The Dark Knight! I should have bet that annual toonie. When I win my first Oscar, I'm going to thank Christopher Nolan. I'll add him to my list.

Sound Mixing: I call The Dark Knight. The winner: Slumdog. But no hating here. Did you see Dev Patel's face? LOVE HIM. Man, I'm in such a hug-everyone mood.

Just noticed that a Twitterer wants an Oscar limit on movies. Apparently she's not into Slumdog. Or she's just dumb. I kind of want to hit her. But she's a stranger, and I typically reserve violence for people I know.

Film Editing: Should be Slumdog. Is Slumdog. All is right in the world.

I forgot that Eddie Murphy was nominated for Dreamgirls. "Nominee" with his name doesn't sound right. Not after Norbit. He is not exactly in Jerry Lewis' league. So why is he handing him the award?

I appreciate the orchestra. I really do. But why does it feel like there's so much filler in this supposedly streamlined show? I'm so torn. I no longer have any idea how I feel about this show.

I think Goldie Hawn just yawned.

Is Alicia Keys wearing the same dress as Natalie Portman? Close. It looks better on Natalie.

Original Score: Slumdog. Happiness.

Then the winner for Original Score sings and dances. (MIA is not singing. Apparently giving birth super-recently is now an excuse for missing the Oscars.) Um, Academy, why did you snub Springsteen? I need to get the Slumdog soundtrack. I could run a marathon to it. The Oscar goes to..."Jai Ho." So the winner/performer is a winner again. And says "I chose love." So did I. I think.

This is going to be over before midnight. SHOCKING.

Uh, oh. Queen Latifah is going to sing for the dead. Don't do it. I can tell the producers are trying to distract us from the applause. So we can't tell who the audience is favoring. It's not working. Man, it was a rough year for Hollywood. Half of the town died. Although the cameramen aren't letting us read the dead folks' names. All I know is that Paul Newman wins as most-loved dead guy. It's because of the salad dressing. So good.

Reese Witherspoon. In something dark and dramatic and refreshingly non-ethereal. Lainey calls her dress "a bruise."

Best Director: Danny Boyle! Amazing. And completely non-surprising. He jumps up and down "in the spirit of Tigger, from Winnie the Pooh." Aw. Because he promised his kids he would.

Best Actress: Come on Kate. You can do it....

Shirley McLaine made Anne Hathaway cry.

Melissa Leo can't win. Remember, her hair qualifies her to be Prince Charles' next wife.

Sophia scares me.

Nicole Kidman looks great. How? Why? And Angelina is still gorgeous. And terrifying.

KATE!!! I love her. Too much. "It's not a shampoo bottle now." Yes, she's an emotional, earnest, off-the-cuff spewer. But I like her frankness. Her dad whistles at her. Seriously, how much more endearing can you get? Oh, and her forehead moves.

Best Actor time. My (fake) money is on Mickey Rourke. I hope he thanks his dead dog. Seriously.

De Niro is petitioning that Penn win because "he's a great human being." Um, I guess Mother Teresa should have had a bookshelf of gold men. Or at least a couple more than Penn.

Adrien Brody needs to shave. Apparently he's "not a fan of Google." WHAT?!

Brad Pitt is a great actor, yes. And actually underrated. Except today. He will not win.

Sean Penn?! Oh, right. Because the Academy likes him. And Rourke has burned 95% of his bridges. Princess Buttercup is crying. And now he's getting political. I guess that's what happens when you're in a political movie. "Mickey Rourke rises again. And he is my brother." Bad boys unite.

Okay, Best Picture time. If it's not Slumdog, there's no point. I quit life.

Filler, filler, filler....

Spielberg says: Slumdog Millionaire!!!!!! And they're bringing the kids on the stage. No, wait. They're bringing EVERYBODY on stage. Seriously, this is why they won. Because it's an ensemble of amazingness. No stars, no power, no muscle. It was supposed to be direct-to-DVD!

Midnight. Bedtime.

You do realize that Slumdog's success all began at the Toronto Film Festival. Which means you should all come visit me in September and we'll party it up with next year's Best Picture folks.

The Oscars 2009: The Red Carpet

Before I start to pick apart the show and chat about the actual awards, here's my red-carpet rundown. Yes, I watch for the fashion. That's why they have a red carpet.

Flashback to last night's red carpet (with links for the TV-less):

Taraji P. Henson
She has the short hair I mentioned in my last post. Movie-star short hair. I want. She's immediately my favorite. Gorgeous dress. Perfect jewelry. And she played Brad Pitt's mom. Give her the Oscar.

Zac Efron
Zac Efron is starting to look like a man. Weird. And sort of greasy. But not in that wonderful scruffy Colin Farrell way. Just in a mirror-hog way.

Amy Adams
I love that she's wearing red. Redheads should embrace crimson. I would. (And her necklace makes me happy.)

Those Kids
The Slumdog Millionaire kids are ADORABLE. It's official: I want Indian children. And Frieda Pinto is still gorgeous. And is finally wearing something worthy of her amazingness.

Melissa Leo
Melissa Leo looks like a middle-aged prom queen. Or like she's next in line to marry Prince Charles. She will not win. But she won at the Independent Spirit Awards last night. So she's fine.

More Slumdog
Seriously, the Slumdog cast is amazing. And happy. There aren't enough happy people in Hollywood. Dev Patel > Zac Efron.

I switch over to Ben Mulroney who totally screws up his interview with Melissa Leo. She lectures him on his inaccuracy about the supposed inexperienced cast. He turns red. I cringe on his behalf. And go back to Seacrest. It's lose-lose.

Heidi Klum
I hate her hair. Too slick and greasy. Very Efron. You should not be tucking your hair behind your ears, girl. Nor should you be at the Oscars.

Robert Pattinson
I don't understand the Robert Pattinson thing. Maybe I need to see Twilight. Later. He reminds me of a guy I once knew who styled his hair with white glue. Seriously.

Sarah Jessica Parker belongs on a wedding cake. I hate that the word "seafoam" was used to describe her gown. That word belongs in the same special category of words as "moist." Gross words.

I want to know Robert Downey Jr.'s beauty secrets. He looks younger every time I see him. He's the real Benjamin Button.

Natalie Portman very pink. This is new. And okay. Very okay.

Ron Howard
Ron Howard and his wife make me want to be married for decades. I read somewhere that they date frequently. Like, multiple times a week. (Taking mental notes.) I wonder if he narrates their adventures. Like real-life Arrested Development.

Anne Hathaway

Robin Wright Penn
I can't believe Sean Penn married Princess Buttercup. So weird.

Sophia Loren
Ruffles overload. I can't handle it. She belongs on Dynasty.

Hey, Mickey!
What is Mickey Rourke wearing? I forgive him. He's wearing a picture of his dog around his neck. Loneliness makes me uncomfortable. I'm scared of him, but I desperately want to give him a hug.

Jessica Blah
Jessica Biel is talking on her cell phone. Which isn't doing much for my non-appreciation of her. Her straggly hair is even less impressive. And she's wearing a toilet-paper-dispenser dress.

Evan Rachel Wood
Evan Rachel Wood is very Grace Kelly. Which is a pretty huge compliment for an ex-girlfriend of Marilyn Manson. Elie Saab wins. (My pick was Saab, remember?)

The Streep
Meryl Streep is stunning. She's bringing it. Fantastic. Lack of Botox can be beautiful. Nicole Kidman, please take notes.

Penelope Cruz
Should I get bangs? Will I become a Spanish beauty? (I can say "pepino cantador." Translation: "singing cucumber.") P.S. Her dress is 60 years old. Amazing.

Kate the Great
Kate Winslet is perfect. I take back the earlier Grace Kelly compliment and bestow it on Kate. Sigh. (Have you seen The Reader? Man.) If she doesn't win, I might cry. That hair. That dress. Everything.

Brad and Angelina
Angie is stunning but cold. Love those earrings. Still, she looks like she might murder me with a stiletto. In interviews, she turns on the charm. But I don't buy it. She is anti-warm-and-fuzzy. She's in Elie Saab. Seriously, Saab rules the night.

No More Miley
Miley Cyrus looks like a glittery inverted cupcake that's trying too hard. It would be appropriate if she were nominated. My maternal instincts are kicking in, and I want to ground her until she's 35 and/or mature. She thinks her new Hannah Montana movie might nab her an Oscar nod next year. SIT DOWN.

Danny Boy
Danny Boyle makes me smile. I can't wait until he gets his Oscar this evening. I may do a little Bollywood dance in his honor.

Saturday, February 21, 2009


Well, I've made my predictions, I've pondered the "Will Zac Efron really be singing and dancing at the Oscars?" rumors and I've spent way too much time staring at potential gowns for tomorrow night's show.

I think a brilliant way to shake up the Oscars would be to require actors to show up in character. That way the costumes get more use (and the designers get the acknowledgment they deserve), and no one has to run around trying to find the most spectacularly gorgeous gown they'll ever wear, accompanied by a fanatic weight-loss routine of colonics and fasting.

If I ever get my chance to walk that red carpet, I'm going to be pretty picky. I can tell. Very few of the gowns I've been staring at inspire me all that much. I'd probably end up approaching a designer with this photo, begging for a re-creation of the genius of yesteryear:

But I don't look all that wonderful in white. Nor do I want to look like a bride. So I'd have to add color. With a photo like this:

And then the designer would work his/her magic, take into account current trends and my obsession with asymmetrical one-shouldered design. And then I'd be sent this:

And I would probably be happy. As long as I don't have to wear my hair all slicked to the side and one-half-of-Princess-Leia-ish.

See, my favorite red-carpet looks in the past decade have all involved short hair. So I would probably have to chop off my hair to feel like a real movie star. Weird, huh?

Charlize, Claire, Hilary and Chloe.
(Click on photo for larger image. I heart Claire's hair.)

I want Hilary's gown. It's the color of Nadine. I don't care that it's been worn before. I'm not that much of a snob.

Not Much To Redo

February 26th is Do Over Day.

"Regret is so last year."

I wrote that a couple of months ago. And I stand by it. It's one of those lessons that's taken me a while to learn, but regret is overrated. Because the few chances I've had in life to actually experience the "do over," my world didn't suddenly become the stuff of legends. Although it did become a little more complicated, a little more fun, a little more "Nadine, this is what it's like to stop thinking so much." But still, the regret certainly wasn't worth the mental anguish.

I'm a thinker. And an over-analyzer. I carefully weigh my decisions and am fully capable of talking myself out of anything. Except groceries. I can walk around in boots with holes in them. I can turn down a lovely evening with friends. I can reject the notion of a week in the sun for the sake of my little bank account and the prospect of even greater adventures that may or may not pop up on the horizon. So on Do Over Day, there won't be a whole lot of things I've done that I can regret. It's the things I chose not to do, I suppose, that I could wistfully long for.

What would I do over?

Nothing. Well, maybe not nothing.
  • I would order the Chicken Marrakesh instead of the salmon at The Sultan's Tent.
  • And maybe I wouldn't be such a picky jerk around a couple of really fantastic gentlemen. I was pretty cold in high school to guys who couldn't spell/play the guitar/read.
  • Okay, and I would take art class instead of music.
  • And I wouldn't head-butt my fake husband in play rehearsals. I think it was a subconscious way to avoid kissing him.
  • I would ignore my budget and willingly go into debt for U2 tickets.
  • And I'd probably take a year between college and the real world and travel far, far away.
  • Oh, and I would not tell the lead singer of Shepherd Hall that his band is going to be huge one day. I was 150% delusional.
  • And I probably wouldn't accuse my parents of never having loved me. That was a rough day. High school is torture.
Now, there are moments I'd love to revisit and do over exactly as I lived them. That's the part of Do Over Day I fully embrace.
  • I would go back to Burnt Church and jump off the bridge into sewage-infested waters.
  • I'd relive a few warm summer evenings. A few ice cream cones. A sunrise. New Year's Day at the beach. Midnight conversations. Awkward goodbyes. Sleepless sleepovers. Jam sessions.
  • I'd re-stalk my favorite band (this was before the great U2 discovery). And spend that late night in their room, interviewing them as if I were the star of Almost Famous.
  • I'd revisit my summer in Stratford. Every moment. Actually, I'd relive every moment ever spent on the stage.
  • I'd hold my grandma's hand again. That moment before she died.
  • I'd hop on that plane and head west. (Maybe I will...and not abandon my camera this time.)
  • And I would totally jump out of the classroom's closet, sword waving wildly, shouting in iambic pentameter. Not all of high school was evil.
What about you? Regret or relive, what would you do over?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Cheap Pumpkins' Fountain of Hanson?

I'm not sure how I feel about this.

Former Smashing Pumpkins guitarist James Iha, Cheap Trick drummer Bun E. Carlos, Hanson's Taylor Hanson and Fountains Of Wayne bassist Adam Schlesinger have formed a new band, Tinted Windows.

The group has recorded its debut album at Stratosphere Sound Studios in New York, which Schlesinger and Iha co-own with Ivy's Andy Chase. The set is expected this spring on a label to be announced.

Tinted Windows will play its first major show at Billboard's South by Southwest showcase, to be held March 20 at Pangaea in Austin, Texas.

source: Billboard

I hope this results in awesomeness. I really do. But such a combination has the potential to fail spectacularly.

Better to fail big than be mediocre. That would just be sad.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

YouTube Tuesday: Puppets and TV Boyfriends

Remember when Coldplay first burst on the scene with a video of Chris Martin walking along a beach in the rain, singing about a color? Yeah. Well, now he's a puppet. And puppets make me happy.

Not that there's anything wrong with singing in the rain. You know how I feel about Gene Kelly.

And over in new-artist-of-the-month corner, meet Caitlin Crosby. She is cool for two very important reasons:

1. She went on tour with this guy. Anyone who's shared a merchandise table with William Fitzsimmons is a friend of mine.

2. She used to date Zachary Levi. I heart Chuck. And apparently they're still friends, as he costars in her video of adorableness. So does Jesse Spencer (oh, how you House fans must be salivating). And Robert Hoffman (Step Up 2: The Streets). And Ryan Hansen (Veronica Mars). It's a TV party within a YouTube party.

Oh, and I want her hair. I guess that's a third reason. Sort of. I'm becoming one of those girls who plays with her hair way too much. I'm not flirting with you. Promise. I'm just distracted by this straggly mess on my head. It's time for a stylist's intervention. And bangs. Maybe.

Tales From Orillia: Part 5 - Nostalgia

This is my final weekend-in-Orillia post. I think.

Kids, be careful what you make in elementary school art class. Your crafty creations may surface in your mother's decor almost two decades later.

My great-grandmother's candy dish. I'm pretty sure I ate most of the jelly beans. And then I went on a jelly-bean run just so I could eat some more.

Welcome to diet-detox week, Nadine. 

Nathan was missing from the steady stream of parties this weekend (I call a game of Scrabble in front of the TV a party, so don't get too excited). But his masterpiece reminded us that he was there in construction-paper spirit.

Study hard, little brother. And keep up the art thing. I think you've got a real natural ability.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Tales From Orillia: Part 4 - The Decor

I'm going through a Polaroid phase. Unfortunately, I don't have a Polaroid camera. So I cheat. It's a nice change of pace for the girl who always plays by the rules.

[Insert Poladroid addiction here]

Tales From Orillia: Part 3 - The Wombat

Best coaster ever.

Dearest parents, your wombat coaster magically made its way into my luggage and is now sitting on my kitchen table. I dare you to come and get it.

It all started with a sixth grade assignment. And now I'm slightly obsessed with this large groundhog-like marsupial.

Is it weird to want to frame a coaster?
Or that I have a "wombat" label for super-special blog posts such as this?

Tales From Orillia: Part 2

Last night, I played Cranium with my family. Too much sugar was involved, as evidenced by the insanity below.

"Thursday was named after the god of jaundice."

"'Pooh Bear' is what 1 year olds who are broken call Winnie-the-Pooh."

"If it's a wombat, just draw a check mark."

"Let's play Monopoly tag. If you tag someone worth more than you, you own them."

"Apparently salamanders are on the way out."

"The dealer's always the loudest."

"If you write that down, I will break you."

"Is that what you meant the first time? Oh. We thought you were just stupid."

"Mom's just learning about thumbs for the first time."

"Open doors mean death."

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Valentine's Day with Cousins. And Mario.

These are the sorts of things I discover when spending the day with family. Because five cousins + one brother + double-screened super-computer of awesomeness = YouTube party.

I believe this man just made the flute non-embarrassing. You know, for heterosexual gamers who typically don't hang out with orchestras.

Friday, February 13, 2009

That Infamous Valentine's Shirt

I forget why I made this shirt. But it made me laugh. For a day or two. And then I demoted it to paint-the-bathroom wardrobe. Girlfriends told me to burn it at my bachelorette party. Guys told me to give it to my hypothetical fiance. And so it sits at the bottom of a drawer, ugly and discolored and purposeless. But I just can't throw it out. 

I like Valentine's. I really do. It's a little blip of hope and sugar in the darkest part of winter. And I have no problem spending the day alone.* I'm either super-well-adjusted or in a state of denial. I opt to believe the former.

What the world needs another T-shirt of greatness.

This gal has been saved by Love. So bring on the cinnamon hearts.

*This year, "alone" means 20+ members of my family. Love, love, love.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Tales From Orillia: Part 1

  • I met my brother's double-screened super-computer of awesomeness.
  • Blu-ray is ridiculous. And makes Heath Ledger even more brilliant.
  • I tried to play a computer game. I got lost. I was murdered. And then I blew myself up.
  • Joel introduced me to Jake and Amir (see below).
  • And I cheated at Scrabble. All upside-down tiles look like blanks. It's an innocent mistake.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

If Only

It's raining. I haven't slept for more than 5 hours a night in almost a week. So I'm not sure if I'm chilled because of the weather or because I'm slowly dying of something.

There's a quiet discontentment. A roughhousing between heart and head as I type here. Maybe it's exhaustion. 

Shouldn't I be writing on a beach somewhere? I'm young. I have a passport. I have a laptop. And I'm ridiculously neurotic and responsible and practical. And borderline boring. Someone, take me away. Sigh.

Maybe I just need sleep. After Lost.

I apparently have a thing for typewriters. In photographs, at least.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

YouTube Tuesday: Coeur de Pirate

I miss French class. More specifically, I miss my twelfth-grade spare. I would sit in the hallway with a friend, our backs against a wall of lockers, and read French novels aloud.

Song of the day: "Comme Des Enfants"

Il m'aime encore, et toi tu m'aime un peu plus fort
Mais il m'aime encore, et moi je t'aime un peu plus fort
Et malgré ça il m'aime encore, et moi je t'aime un peu plus fort
Mais il m'aime encore, et moi je t'aime un peu plus fort

Coeur de Pirate is from Montreal. And she's my heterosexual girl crush of the week.

(I'd like to thank Seth Meyers for having a heterosexual man crush on Colin Firth years ago and thus introducing such a brilliant phrase into my vocabulary.)

Le Ballon Rouge

It's International Flirting Week. So let's spend some time in Paris and brush up on the language of love. Or something like that.*

*My personal flirting style is being oblivious to all human life forms within a three-mile radius. I usually notice balloons, though.

Umbrella For Two

It's mild. And soggy. And almost Valentine's.

Time to twirl that umbrella* and sing in the rain.**

*I once put "umbrella twirling" as a skill on my résumé.
**Gene Kelly was my first dead boyfriend. I blame him for my umbrella issues.

Monday, February 09, 2009

The Grammys: Always Adele

I didn't watch all of the Grammys. I'm more of a movie-award-show girl. Usually, my musical loves are not acknowledged whatsoever, leaving me to sit through painful banter and medlies of "hits" I've never heard before. This was pretty much the case last night, save for a few standouts.

Highlight of the Grammys: Adele

(I'd also like to award Adele with Best Dressed. Love everything about her.)

"Chasing Pavements" is my favorite song of 2008. Followed by Sugarland's "Stay." I like the super-honest, sweetly haunting, slightly uncomfortable stuff, apparently.

And yes, I'm admitting to being a Sugarland fan. It became official about a month ago, when I realized that a song that lyrically doesn't really reflect my life resonates quite strongly with me. Yep, I magically relate to a song about being the other woman.

(But I totally relate to "Chasing Pavements" lyrically. 'Cause I'm a girl.)

I want Jennifer Nettles and Adele to go on tour together. I'll join them and sell T-shirts.

Sugarland's "Stay"

Surprise Reaction of Non-Hate: Kid Rock

I can't explain it, but the man no longer creeps me out. "Amen" was pretty rockin'. He should wear a suit (or anything with sleeves, really) more often. I think I'd like to hang out with him at a backyard BBQ. I bet he grills a mean steak. Yep, I live to shock you.

Other random thoughts:
  • Alison Krauss, though mute for most of the night, had a gorgeous dress. Forgot to do her hair, though.
  • Miley Cyrus should be grounded until she's 18.
  • Jonas Brothers + Stevie Wonder = surprisingly non-horrible. "Together again." Ha.
  • Jennifer Hudson brings out the gospel choir. My kryptonite.
  • Bono wears darker eye shadow than I do. And when he sings "sexy boots," I am certain he is singing about my boots of the same name. Yes, I name my boots.
  • I'm glad Chris Martin acknowledged that his band was wearing pastel rip-offs of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band attire. 'Cause they were.
  • Boyz II Men are officially a backup band.
  • I would never perform on my due date. Ever.
  • I want to be Jennifer Nettles. Oh, did I imply that already? Silly me.
  • I went to bed before Radiohead played. This makes me the most uncool person ever. Probably.

Beth, thanks for introducing me to Adele. You have the gift of musical matchmaking.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Sleepless in Seattle. Without the Seattle.

It is 1:18 a.m. Boy Behind the Wall has cycled through the world's most intriguing playlist, and now his girlfriend is singing along to something befitting the '90s R&B scene.

I don't know if I should laugh that he was clapping along to "Redneck Woman" or cry over his pathetic rapping abilities. There was a brief shining moment of Amy Grant. An entire Weezer song. An homage to Lauren Hill.....

It will only be a matter of time before the music turns to awkward moaning and I start fantasizing about removing my eardrums with a spoon.

I. Want. Sleep.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

They're Just Not That Into Me

I saw He's Just Not That Into You last night. I laughed. I cringed. I almost cried. And then I spent the rest of my evening in a neurotic, obsessed, I'm-still-14 frame of mind, frustrated with myself more than anything. Which means that the flick's rom-com status should be revoked and replaced with one of "psychological horror."

The most amusing part of the entire experience was listening to the packed theatre's gasps and snickers. The girl who shouted "yes" to an on-screen proposal seconds before the character had the chance to. That "I've been there" sigh that hung in the air. It's a girls' night movie. Gentlemen, you have been warned.

I went with a single girlfriend and three married women. The married gals did not find it nearly as traumatic as we did. They didn't need a long debrief after the credits rolled.

This is what I learned:
  • I lie to myself.
  • My friends lie to me.
  • I lie to them.
  • I want to think I'm the exception to the rule. I'm probably the rule.
  • The ridiculous behavior of some women is really just the actualization of things that my brain has already contemplated at length. I am no better. Just slightly more self-controlled.
  • I want to marry Ben Affleck. (Weirdest thought of the week.)
  • 98.5% of the guys I've met thus far in my short life are "just not that into me."
  • I love Ginnifer Goodwin. And her hair.
  • And the Mac guy.

I will never tell my daughter that if a boy is mean to her, it means he has a crush on her. Ever. The lies start young, folks.

I'm going to write a book one day. Or a play. Or movie. Or sitcom. And the hilariously awkward fumblings of my life will educate and entertain the masses. My therapy will be your escapism.

There will be stories like this:

Sometimes He Is Into Me

I was at a wrap party. He was drunk. He walked over and asked if he could speak to me alone. He piled on the compliments (I can't recall the exact words, as his mumblings did little to reach my resistant heart, but I know he compared me to Scarlett Johansson) and asked if I preferred him intoxicated. He had the courage to talk to me when he drank, but not when he was sober. And then he asked me out.

I told him I always prefer the sober version of individuals over the drunk version. Always. And then I walked away, only to be hit on by a single dad whose baby's momma was waiting for him at home.

There are so many more....
It's almost always one-way.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Stand By Your Man

Okay, okay, I'll cave. (As in Batcave.) I'll chat about Mr. Bale.

But first, let's get a non-maniacal image in our heads, shall we?

This is the face of someone about to begin major damage control.

I heart Laurie.

Christian Bale swears a lot in a loud voice and everyone looks at me. As if it's shocking that I would spend so much quality time with such a volatile personality. Or as if I might crumble upon hearing the news of his non-warm-and-fuzziness. (This is where your mom explains the difference between being a fan and actually having a relationship with someone.)

My heart is not broken over Christian Bale's rant. I'm not going to suddenly boycott his movies or burn my VHS of Swing Kids (the horror). Honestly, I'm really not shocked by it. At all. News broke of this verbal assault when it happened LAST YEAR (around the same time as his infamous family blowup). And he has long had a bit of a perfectionist-on-the-verge-of-a-tantrum reputation. So much so that they called him Tandy on the set of Metroland. Yes, before he was Batman. Or even the American Psycho.

Yes, folks, I do my research.

ASIDE: It's beat-up-famous-people week. Now people are questioning whether Michael Phelps should compete in 2012. What?! I don't have crazy medical/marijuana knowledge, but I'm pretty sure that it leaves your system after four years. I think it's time America took its chill pills.

Jerry Maguire says we live in a cynical world. I believe him. But I recently realized that I'm also very generous with giving people the benefit of the doubt. And that my cynicism is often just me taking the easy way out. If I'm hurt, it's so easy to write someone off as a jerk, even though he/she had no cruel intentions whatsoever. It's a defense mechanism. So I don't have to deal with the me side of the equation.

Who am I to sit down and assess whether a stranger's behaviour is justified? The "journalism" covering this is ridiculous. Both sides.

I'm not going to defend Bale's moment of rage. But I'm not going to define him by it either. More than anything, I'm creeped out that the tape was leaked in the first place. Not cool.

Let's just remember that Bale and Kermit the Frog have much in common. That he was a Newsie. That he has the cutest daughter ever. That he's brilliant at his craft. And that he's JUST A MAN.

I'm on Team Bale. Because everyone needs someone on their team, even when they're in the wrong. Maybe especially when they're in the wrong.

P.S. I still love Mel Gibson post-drunken tirade. I forgive all.
P.P.S. If you want to be really scared of Bale, watch Harsh Times. I had to turn away.
P.P.P.S No, I'm not going to link to the rant. You can Google it if you can't stand being the one person on the planet who hasn't heard it. I recommend listening to a remix of it. Or the one with Bill O'Reilly. But not if you're under 14. Kids, just say no to profanity. Keep those ears lovely.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

YouTube Tuesday: Complaining

Today was one of those days. You know the kind, with coworkers pictorially describing their Tuesday experiences using Google Images of orange orangutans and overly tanned Italian fashion designers in too-tiny swim trunks. Yes.

So for YouTube Tuesday, here is one long complaint. It is subtitled. And it is sung.

Ladies and gentlemen, the Helsinki Complaints Choir:

"My dreams are boring..."

Sunday, February 01, 2009

The Vows of Friendship

Over lunch. A simple promise.

I promise to never steal your lollipop or your man.

Yep, we're gonna be fantastic friends. I can tell.

Halftime Postmortem

I didn't really get Bruce Springsteen tonight. I didn't connect. I didn't want to be there. I was distracted by slightly off-key vocals and some awkward stage antics. And his crotch. Maybe I'm into subtle rockers. I don't know. I apologize if this makes me a horrible human being.

Speaking of crotches (best segue ever), today was the second time Bruxy mentioned "crushed testicles" at church. This is a fact. I have no opinion on the matter. I am not a boy. (Although such a situation sounds rather uncomfortable.)

Last year's Tom Petty halftime was my kind of show. "Free Fallin'" is what got me through my longest run ever this week (yes, folks, over 5k already!), so he's officially my best friend. I want to be a Heartbreaker. Literally.

Of course, I'd have to pick U2 as my all-time favorite. Hands down. No argument. Ever. Although it's a little awkward to watch now, as it's so saturated with 9/11 aftermath. But still, I want to be 1/16th as awesome as Bono when I grow up.

Okay, so Bono's 150% non-subtle. But no crotch shots. Ah, I don't know what I want. I guess I just wanted something more from the Boss. That's all.

Although I'm thankful he didn't invite Britney to duet with him while wearing a sport sock on her wrist. I'm still not sure how I feel about the *NSYNC-meets-Aerosmith year.

"You are Aero-Sync."

Britney and her sock arm appear at 8:22. If you care.

P.S. Is it wrong that I prefer Justin Timberlake doing robotic choreographed lunges over his music now? Pre-Janet Jackson-fiasco Justin. Semi-love him.