Tuesday, August 26, 2008

WINDOW DRESSING: Giant Vintage Sunglasses

Giant Vintage Sunglasses is pretty awesome, and I got turned on to it by Gmail. Yes, that weird quirk that makes it read all your e-mails and tailor ads and websites to what it thinks you're interested in. It creeps me out, but this time it was pretty dead-on. Also, sometimes I like to figure out which e-mail it spied on, this time it was my receipt for some (gulp) Dior sunglasses I just bought. So ashamed...

Anyway, it's pretty self-explanatory. The website is oversized vintage frames from the 70s and 80s at super reasonable prices. Modeled by hipster ladies with black hair and hipster boys with beards.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

THIS DUMB WORLD: Childhood gets Botoxed

So...I was alerted to this awful phenomenon by the NY Magazine blog (a.k.a. my only source of news currently). Apparently all of our favorite childhood cartoon characters are getting fresh make-overs to appeal to the children of today. The Vulture does a good job of spelling it all out, so I won't re-hash it here. But can I take the time to detail the most awful atrocities??

Care Bears: Who doesn't love Care Bears? Adorable, sweet little bears that want us to all care about each other? Apparently today's children find it difficult to identify with sharing and caring if it comes in a pudgy package. So the Care Bears have less belly-fat and longer eyelashes. Much like post-Parent Trap Lindsey Lohan.

Strawberry Shortcake: American Greetings has replaced the gumdrops our favorite doll loved with fresh-fruit, which is probably why she is so much slimmer. Oh, and her calico cat Custard? The sweetest little printed cat on TV? Got replaced by a fucking CELL PHONE. WTF? Ok, the candy they can explain away with "obese children...blah blah...nutrition...blah" And I get that, it's pretty sad to see little kids who are already into adult-sized clothing. But you can't replace a living, breathing pet with a fucking cell phone. Come on!

Mickey Mouse: About to go under the plastic surgeon's scalpel once Disney decides whether he needs American Apparel or a tibetan prayer scarf tied cowboy style around his neck.

I'm so incensed I've taken the time to write this and then promptly forget about it. But when you see goth-Tweety bird, don't say I didn't warn you.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

RANDOM AWESOME: WOW. This vid has all my favorite things...

1. Queen
2. Spandex
3. Cartoon Comic-style superheroes
4. Live action 70s era kids' shows
5. Kids' shows
6. Mad-crazy guitar riffs
7. Dramatic pauses

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

RANDOM AWESOME: Dance Line Flashback

got this one from Sarah --- it's all about the fashion circa 1992

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

RANDOM AWESOME: Little Girls Rock the H*ll Out

I'm not into children, at all. I don't want to have any and I'm sorry if that makes me evil or somehow femininely deficient. But if I had a little girl I would be so down for this:

Willie Mae Mini Rock Camp for Girls promises to train little wannabe prissy wenches into little awesome chicks...little awesome chicks with guitars! Or drums, bass, and turntables! Founded in 2004, the camp is non-profit and "is founded on the proposition that music can serve as a powerful tool of self-expression and self-esteem-building for girls and young women, and can help combat racism and stereotypes by building bridges of communication and shared experience among girls from diverse communities." That's a tall order but they've been going strong all this time and a movie about the original Portland camp is coming out soon in theaters.

The summer program, a week long intensive is located (as if you couldn't have guessed) in Brooklyn. Oh wait, I almost forgot the best part --- the campers write their own songs too! This year promises grrrrl rockers/teachers like Kathleen Hanna (Bikini Kill) and Kimya Dawson (Moldy Peaches).

Like most people, I have a secret dream to be a part of a band, and even though my friends would guess I'd rather be in Danity Kane shaking it in hiphuggers and glitter, there is something to be desired about being in a crazy rock band screaming my head off. Sadly, the camp only takes girls between 8 and 18...my dreams go deferred once again.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

LIFE & TIMES: The Bitch

There was a time in my life not so long ago that I began many sentences with the phrase “Not to sound like a bitch, but…” And I saw no problem with that statement until I read an article where the author noted that if you start a sentence with “Not to sound mean but…”, the chances are that what you’re about to say is mean. And you know that it’s mean, so why dissemble about it?
After reading that article I had an epiphany. I still often feel the need to put a disclaimer on myself, especially for people that don’t know me well. More often than not, I’m likely to say “I know this is bitchy but whatever, I’m a bitch and this is what I have to say.” When did the word bitch become the new ‘queer’? Or the new ‘N word’? Is bitch the newest of a crop of derogatory words that the intended victim has turned into a celebration of sorts?
In one of my favorite episodes of “The Simpsons”, Homer finds himself confronted with a gay man and proceeds to tell him that he hates when gays used the word queer to describe themselves. I quote “That’s the word we came up with to talk about you!” Isn’t bitch just more of the same? Many women are more inclined than not to call themselves a bitch before anyone else has the chance to do it for them. I know that I’m one of those women.
The antiquated belief that argumentative, stubborn, tactless women, (i.e. strong women who say what’s on their minds) are bitches still holds true today. I feel lucky that I work in an industry that is largely female-dominated and nurtures the type of balls-busting female I’ve always admired. But as secure as I sound, I definitely worry that perhaps my strong personality is why I’m single. Or maybe that I am perceived largely as a bitch by any and everybody I meet. But is being a bitch so bad??
I believe that most people know more about themselves than they’d like to admit to. I think that a huge part of becoming an adult is being able to admit and embrace your own shortcomings. So here’s my confession: I’m an arrogant, domineering, mean sometimes, busybody and sometimes downright bitchy. However, as one of my personal heroines, Tina Fey noted in a past episode of SNL “I’m a bitch…deal with it. Bitches get stuff done. Bitch is the new Black.”

Watch Miss Fey's full appearance here, the YouTube video is too shitty to use.

LIFE & TIMES: The Asshole: And other friends near and dear to your heart.

So I'm attempting to actually keep writing, and allow other people to read what I write even though I have a crippling fear of people hating the things I create. Which is why I stick to being a tiny cog in a large fashion machine. I recently met the editor/creator of a beautifully designed online magazine: PlaztikMag.com. And she has allowed me to submit some of my blathering for her site. I don't know if she'll like it or use it, but since I wrote it anyway, I'm posting my first article (in it's long-ass entirety---she'll probably edit it down) below. And if it actually makes it to her site, I'll keep everyone in the loop and pass it on.

Our fashion editor posed this question to me over dinner: Why is there always one asshole in every group of friends? And the more I thought about, the more it irked me. Because it’s true. It never matters how cool your crew is, how much you all love and care for each other, one of you is inevitably always an asshole. Why is that?
Maybe it’s because all friends inevitably fall into easy compartments. And while most, if not all people fall into more than one category, all of your friends will fall into one.

The Center: The one that wants you all to bond and be BFFs forever and ever and ever. If she is a girl, she will always call you all ladies, as in ”Ladies, let’s all hang out together!” and “Ladies, I miss us!” If he’s a male, he’s already planned on you being in his wedding and he’s single.
Con: The Center will bug out if anyone else takes the reins as social director and perhaps morph into The Asshole-Passive Aggressive.

The Partier: Similar to The Center in the desire to socialize, different in that it’s not about you at all. The Partier is always down for whatever with whoever ‘cause the party never stops.
Con: At some point the party stops and the Partier grows up. Or this friend gets to be the old, bitter person at the bar, wondering what happened to their life?

The Funny one: Feeling down? This hilarious buddy is the one to call. He/she is full of jokes guaranteed to keep you rolling for hours. And not only is this friend funny, everything around them is comical. Boring party +funny friend = awesome times.
Con: As the suicide/overdose rate of comedians has proven, funny people are always crying on the inside and at some point The Funny friend will become depressed and you won’t know how to relate to them any more. Also risk of turning into Asshole-Funny.

The Mom: He/she cares about you so much and will tell you the truth about yourself in a loving way. And how to fix your issues and file your taxes. This friend is like your mom if your mom split 40s with you at house parties.
Con: While helpful, sometimes the lectures get tiresome, so it’s important that your Mom friend be down for dancing and partying, not just long discussions at the local café.

The Dominant One: Decisions, decisions. Decisions are in no way difficult for the dominant one, because he/she always goes with their gut and gets down to business. It’s not so much that everyone else is wrong; it’s more like The Dominant One is always right.
Pro: It’s hard to think for yourself all the time!

The Pushover: This friend is down for whatever, whenever and anything you want to do. Dinner? Your choice. Movies? Whatever you want to see. A friend like this is always necessary because they are easiest to make plans with, hang out with, and even live with because of their amazing adaptability to most situations.
Con: The Pushover will push back someday and become a total brat, because being a complete sucker is hard for most people.

The Come and Go Friend: He’s here, he’s there, he’s nowhere. He’s your own Come and Go Friend. Around enough to still be friends, but doesn’t stick around long enough to have fights with anyone or being annoying in any way. This is the friend you always think of fondly, and wish that you saw more of.
Con: Absolutely nothing. This friend is always awesome.

The Boyfriend Girl: She’s in love, and now you’ll never see her again. Unless she’s got the boyfriend in tow. Not to be confused with The Come and Go Friend: The Boyfriend Girl (or Girlfriend Boy) has left you for love.
Pro: If the significant other is cool you’ve made a new friend. If not, well, you didn’t need all those pesky friends anyway.

The Asshole: Most important to know, this guy or girl has no idea they are The Asshole. And they might never realize it, depending on how narcissistic they are. He/she isn’t mean to everyone, all the time, because that would result in a complete desertion by any and all friends. But there is enough concentrated snarky/bitch-ass/snottiness that the vast majority of said crew will spend way too much time thinking about how much The Asshole sucks. Long discussions going back to when one first met this bastard will ensue, causing questions like: “Why am I still friends with this person?” and “How do I cut this person off without losing all of our mutual friends?” There is no answer to that one, because that is the mark of a true asshole. Some of your friends still love and care about this beotch.
Pro: Any of your trangressions will look like child’s play next to this SOB’s patented blend of sarcasm, back-stabbing and resentment.

Of course, assholes come in all shapes and sizes. They are modified by age, sex, temperament…

Asshole-Aggressive: Just a jerk. No rhyme, reason or even finesse about it.

Asshole-Passive Aggressive: Are you mad at me? I don’t know and even after you get over it I’ll never know why. Maybe it stems from bizarre bouts of hidden jealousy stemming from an incidence long ago. Maybe I inadvertently stepped on your cat’s tail. You’re nice to my face, a bitch behind my back and when you’re actively pissed off you’re even nicer.

Asshole-Funny: I never knew I was funny enough to be the subject of all of your jokes. But because you’re hilarious I guess I have to take it.

Asshole-Narcissist: A regular conversation goes like this:

Person #1: Me, me, me. You?
Person #2: Oh, me, me, me. You?

A conversation with the Asshole-Narcissist is more like this:

Person #1: Me, me, me. You?
A-N: Oh, me, me, me. Me, me, me.
Person #1: That’s great! Me, me---
A-N: And also, me, me, me. Me, me, me. And then, me, me, me, me, me, me…….

Why is one friend always the asshole? After much research I’ve realized that one friend has to be an asshole to balance everything out. Does the asshole always stay that way? I don’t think so, because you’d cut that person out of your life forever if they remained the spawn of evil for any great length of time. People transition and change. But into every life an asshole will come.

And as for my own crew of lady-friends? Well, I’m not telling…

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Even though I have the classically single Cancer outlook on Valentine's Day (as in VD stands for Venereal Disease and nothing else, but I'm also crying on the inside) here's a mix for all you suckers in lust.


Sunday, September 30, 2007


Waverly Flams is a group of film makers who live Brooklyn. That's all I know. Miss Gina Freedman advised me I had to watch Pick Up the Phone. And the rest is history. Oh and they make a new clip every week but this one is so far the best.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

MEDIA: Fall! part 2~TV

America's Next Top Model. I have nothing to say but this --->>> go here. Wait, I do have something to say. Jaslene. Not only does she have the nerve to look like a man in a wig but she also sounds like she is speaking around 10 marbles held tenuously between her teeth. It's bad enough she won but now I have to hear her speak all season?!

Gossip Girl a.k.a. my new crack. It's the new O.C. and not even a guilty pleasure because I am not guilty. Who doesn't like to watch drunken rich teens slut their way through an oddly clean Manhattan. The CW generally bangs out pre-teen TV hit after hit, but most of the new fall line-up is pretty busted (a show based on Grim Reapers? Iranian immigrants??) But Gossip Girl is definitely here to stay...for at least a season...maybe it helps that all the books have already been written and are all proven bestsellers. Original ideas are scary!! Now every fashion designer must have her own gay husband, and my gay husband loves Gossip Girl too. We queen out about this show hardcore over illicit BBQ dinners in midtown. In the second episode, it Girl Serena van der Woodsen, throws out her Chocolate phone because it reminds her of all the gossip about her. And the poor kids live in Williamsburg with their washed-up rock star dad. Sweet.

Newport Harbor. I cannot get through an entire episode of this show, so I can't say much about it. Except for this, these are the stupidest chicks ever. So stupid, and if I ever find the correct YouTube video I will post it sooo fast. But let's just say this, they don't know that Italy is a country. 'Nuff said.

MUSIC: Fall!

So I haven't posted in quite some time due to some extenuating circumstances, namely the asshole who screwed me over and made me almost homeless. But that's all over, and my ladies and I have great plans of making him pay...

Anyway, the weather is getting cooler and Summer is so over...womp womp, that sucks. The end of the summer is always (in the past couple of years) marked by the last party at McCarren Pool. Incidentally, that was my first blog post last year. This year was not nearly as magical: it rained, the headliners weren't exactly awesome. But I went mainly for Kid Sister, a.k.a. my music girl crush. She laid down her hits and shook her booty in some shorty short overalls. It was all I wanted to see and a little bit more. Those who were there might know what I mean...Santo Gold did an awesome turn, which revved me up for her performance earlier this week. Spank Rock also made a brief appearance, with Amanda Blank backing him up on the classic? nostalgic? Bump.

I finally made it backstage, which was a leaky tent propped up between some Port o' Potties and trailers. The best part was the free potato chips and getting out of the rain...

In between then and now some stuff happened, stuff I should have blogged about if I wasn't all down in the dumps. Can I remember it all? No. Will I try? No. It's old news. But the Pussy Party is pretty notable, only because it happens every month now and occasionally brings in some great DJs I want to see. My girls and I all attended the first Pussy Party, hosted by Roxy Cottontail and featuring Scottie B and Nick Catchdubs of Fool's Gold. And there were some others, but that's who I came to see. That was a long ass time ago but what I do remember was the usual suspects and good music marred by elbows in my back, tiny glasses of mixed drinks and a smoke machine.

Otherwise, the parties this summer were pretty unmemorable. It's time for an awesome Fall, time for some good shows. And it's time for people to stop playing like leggings and ribbed tights are pants. I am so tired of seeing everyone's crotches all over Williamsburg. So it's getting colder, everyone put your jeans on and we can all party together without all your vag hanging out. Brooklyn is not an American Apparel ad. Smell ya' later!

Saturday, August 11, 2007


So with a timely RSVP you too could have gotten a ticket for the Zune's excuse for direct in-your-face advertisements: the Zune Hip Hop BBQ at the Tobacco Warehouse in DUMBO. This being my second (third?)musical festival for the summer, I know what to expect by now: overpriced food, the smell of sunscreen mixed with beer and P. Diddy's newest cologne, more fashion atrocities than there are teeth in Flavor Flav's mouth, and a super-secret surprise guest. And all of that came to fruition...However, Zune made it a little different by sticking faithfully to the BBQ theme. There was soul food (I had an oxtail dinner with mac & cheese and collard greens), bubbles, and board games. I won Chutes & Ladders! But I do have to say that between four adults we continually played the game incorrectly.

Now I could go through all the musical guests, et cetera, but I think by now everyone (my two, three readers?) knows I am not a musical reviewer. I read my book (engrossing Victorian novella that it was) most of the day, laid out, watched Megan blow bubbles. I didn't really get into it until the surprise guest came to the stage. It was LL Cool J, I'm not good at building suspense. Somehow my companions and I all guessed it was him beforehand so it wasn't much of a surprise. He rapped all of his old standard favorites, didn't try to work in a lot of new shit, which is what performers of his legendary status often try to do. It was all quite enjoyable and ended promptly enough for us to get back to Park Slope in time for some Los Pollitos.

Friday, July 27, 2007

MUSIC: Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival

So, please bear with me, I know I'm late on this one...

The Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival is on it's 3rd year at the Tobacco Warehouse in Dubmo (this is my second year going) and seems to be limping like a three-legged dog at a frat party. Meaning, still fun but not too steady. The entertainment began with the insistent e-mails to pre-register, buy tix online, and donate money that filled my inbox to overflowing, but who couldn't use a reminder? And I have to insist here that if you are attending next year, you might as well donate $5.

New this year, the Brooklyn Bodega made an ambitous move from one day of music to 5 (count 'em 5!) whole days of Hip Hop immersion. Those days included a screening of Wild Style at Brooklyn Bridge Park, book signing at Powerhouse Arena and a Staxx Records 50th anniversary party. The June 21st event "Hip Hop Under the Bridge" featuring Uncle Ralph McDaniels was sadly cancelled, but most of the other events went off without a hitch...except for the actual festival. Am I building suspense over what the big problem was? I hope I am...

This year's BHHF featured performances by a literal drove of artists, including Large Professor, Consequence and headlined by Ghostface with a super-secret surprise guest. The day dawned quite brilliantly sunny, a beastly hot but beautiful cloudless day. Last year we were all huddled under the tent hiding from the rain, but this year was full of sunshine, everyone sat on the field soaking in the sun through their Timbalands. I, as usual, covered myself in SPF 60 sunscreen. So, the first thing I was looking foward to was the festival food, always overpriced but delicious. Blue Mountain Caribbean Delights was slated to provide Rotis and authentic food just like my mother used to but now refuses to make...but they were conspicuously absent. My disappointment over that was abated by the ever dependable Rice, a Thai fusion restaurant that supplies rice, kebabs, roasted corn and flavored lemonade. The one absence that threatened to ruin my day was that there was no beer!

As an event sponsored by the Brooklyn Brewery, usually they are the exclusive suppliers of beer, but it turns out that the Brewery did not file their papers in time to get permits. I don't consider myself a beer fanatic, but it was the perfect excuse to sit out on the grass with all my friends and indulge in a frosty one at 3 in the afternoon. This seems like a huge blunder to me, because no one could bring beer in either. I noticed several people, including some of my companions, making plans to leave, have a beer and come back later. However, around 5PM they implemented a no re-entry rule.

Anyway, irregardless of the red tape shenanigans it was great show for free. Between no Caribbean food and no beer, I was all set up to be cranky...but it was a beautiful day. I'm not much of a music critic, so I won't even go there...I know you're disappointed. I will say that I was so far away from the stage I couldn't see very much at all but it was worth it to sit on the grass. The musical acts ranged from hip hop and rap to jazzy and loungey. Finally, Ghostface took the stage with as many living members of the Wu Tang that could be crammed onto the stage. There was literally no room for anyone else after the super-secret surprise guest came on..it was Fat Joe, he appeared out of no where and it was very surprising. Everyone got to their feet and sung along with all the songs they knew...I never know much past early 90s one-hit wonders so I just waved my hands in the air when asked. Ghostface timed his performance to perfectly coincide with the sun setting behind the Brooklyn Bridge, or at least I like to think that he timed it that way. All in all another awesome summer Saturday in Brooklyn.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

LIFE & TIMES: It's my Birthday! Woot!

So I haven't blogged in a month, and if you know me well, then you know that I have been having a massive major post-grad freak out. As Wendy Williams likes to say, Cancers tend to cry on the inside. Well, I cried all over the place: inside, outside, on the dance floor, on my shirt, alone, in a crowd, and in Larue's car. But not on the beach or the farm, see pictures.

Anyway, after all that I came to some realizations, actually one main one. I am 24 today, the big 2-4. Old enough to know better, young enough to still make the same mistakes. I woke up this morning with a face full of stress-related pimples, and it was very high school. Except in high school I wore foundation and today I don't even own concealer.

So life goes on, even when things seem to suck. And when I think everything is shitty and I'm all out of luck, that's never true. At least I have rhythm, an inspirational birthday card from my mom, and great friends!

We all went to Long Island last weekend for a Crabtastic time to celebrate me and Sarah's birthdays on Bastille Day (my favorite non-American national holiday after Boxing Day and Bank Holidays.) We laid on the beach, Akita strategically tanning, me slathering on sunblock and praying I wouldn't, and Lauren doing things that will stay in Long Island...Between berry picking and barbeque, it was one of the most relaxing weekends I have had in a long time. And I still got in some good Harry Potter reading time before the big finale on Saturday. All in all, an awesome birthday.

I promise there are more blogs to come, I still have to back-blog about the Brooklyn Hip Hop festival and the Chromeo/Flosstradamus/Kid Sister show. And those blogs are coming, I swear I'm in a good writing mood now!

My guest photographer today is Miss Akita Kai Plynton. With her polaroid camera she instantly captures the best moments of summer, gently washed and aged in that way only polaroids are. She is a talented surface artist and fashion designer who is currently specializing in intarsia teddy bears. Her preferred medium is the Polaroid camera, of course.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

PARTIES: Night at the Museum, not starring Ben Stiller

As a kid, I always thought it would be great to get stuck in the museum at night. And though this idea has been the premise of a few children's books and movies, I suspect my motives were dorkier than most. I hated having to crane my neck to look over taller people's shoulders at the exhibits and I just wanted to be alone so I could learn at my leisure. Wow, what a loser.
Anyway, the weekly newsletter of cultural happenings Flavorpill has teamed up with Nokia and Budweiser select to sponsor One Step Beyond, monthly parties at the American Museum of Natural History (more specifically the Rose Center for Earth and Space). If you remember the parties at the Guggenheim museum last year, you'll know they often featured ridiculously long lines and (my) frost-bitten toes. More people stood outside than ever got in (myself included). In contrast, the Rose Center has about 5x the amount of space, a maximum capacity of over 1000 people, no lines at all and 3 floors to party on.
For those who have never been, the Rose Center's main hall is dominated by an enormous white sphere (not unlike Disney's Epcot center) which houses the new Hayden Planetarium on the top floor. Below that is spiral walkway which details the timeline of our universe, and on the ground floor are smaller mini-exhibits on life on earth and the other planets. There are 3 floors, all of which were open for dancing or general ambling around, and a snack stand with pricey hot dogs and chicken fingers.
The music was supplied by DJ team Devlin & Darko of Spank Rock, and Aaron LaCrate (Milkcrate NYC), whose sets were bouncy if not predictable. The only surprise was that they relied on old and new reggae standards for the better part of an hour to get the party started. In the "Powerhouse", a room on the top floor, Foreign Islands spun punk and rave music for the tightly-fitted pants crowd. Danish artist Hess, and The Bassbin Twins played house, D&B and electronica. The drinks were a bit disappointing: there was only Budweiser Select ($6) and wine ($8), but the prices could have been worse. The main floor was host to a few performers, including 3 professional hula-hoopers, a man in a kimono on roller skates, and girl covered in fake flowers who danced with the guests in a B-girl style.
After feeling a bit tipsy, my friends and I saw the show on the Big Bang, narrated by Maya Angelou, and the show "Cosmic Collisions" in the planetarium, narrated by Robert Redford. The highlight of the show is that they use vibrations to simulate meteorite impacts. It was like being on the best class field trip ever, with all the teachers missing and replaced by bartenders. And I am sure the planetarium has never been host to such a rowdy crowd of kids, they were forced to turn off the projection because of the repeated whoopings, cheers and applause at various spectral events, including the creation of the Moon. Fun Science Fact: Scientists believe the moon was created in only 1 month. Which is rather refreshing since everything else seems to have taken billions and trillions of years.
The only drawback to this party is the $20 price tag. For someone like me, who prefers to party for free, that's a big chunk of change just to dance (and learn!), but for Manhattanites I'm sure that didn't put a dent in their wallets. It makes me feel a bit better to know that a portion of the cover will go to the museum instead of some peroxide party planner, and I got a ticket to the museum during regular hours to boot.
P.S. Sorry it took so long to post again, I started a new job that sucks the life and wit out of me, both of which I need to blog successfully.

Sunday, May 13, 2007


Nothing says Happy Mother's Day like Bible Fight. This brand new game brought to you by the fine people at Adult Swim.com brings together two things I love best: sacrilege and a militant Mother of God. You can play as 7 characters, pitting Moses against Eve, Noah against Satan, Jesus against Mary and Himself as a baby...when "Ye are deemed worthy", you can unlock God and play the bearded one against Satan, a.k.a. the ultimate Grudge Match. So it's silly, whatever. And if you believe in such things, it could possible damn you to an eternity in purgatory...I'd say it's worth it, if only to see Noah summon all his animals to trample Moses under their various hooves.

Monday, April 30, 2007

PARTIES: White Tees, White Belts

White Tees, White Belts can officially count itself among one of the best Philly transplants to NY, an ostentatious list which includes cheesesteaks, pretzels, John Bolaris (our former weatherman), and myself. War and Moon imported this fine dance party as the latest cherry on their proverbial sundae of secret location "warehouse" parties and mid-week open bars. Now, I never got to go WTWB while I was in Philly, so I don't have much to compare it's NY version too. However, $15 for an all night Open Bar was enough to get me there, and the DJs (including Catchdubs) spinning various club bangers were enough to keep me there until about 3:30 when I stumbled home. True to their word, War and Moon supplied enough complimentary drinks to last throughout the night---and I am pretty sure it was a bad idea to test them on that. I don't remember much else about the night, and the lovely pictures (taken by Miss Megan Tou) tell a story I think it would be best to forget. I salvaged a couple that I thought weren't too horrible...it says a lot that these were the best ones... Megan Tou is a fashion designer by day, sweaty picture-taker by night. She has a singular talent of capturing the most embarrassing Sparks-filled moments of our lives and publishing them on her Flickr. Her preferred medium is photography, dance, and liquor.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

MEDIA: Degradation of Women in the Media or...The Search for New Pussy

Despite the broad strides women have made in the past decades, in terms of occupation, education, and just plain darn respect, ladies are still pigeonholed. Women are either Virgins or Whores; Mary, Mother of Jesus or Mary Magdalene, Prostitute; Hillary or Monica.

If I were to buy in to this conundrum, I'd have to say that the Pussycat Dolls are whores...Fabulous dancing ones at that! I cannot stop watching "The Search for the Next Pussycat Doll" in the way that people naturally slow down to watch a car crash. Within a few episodes, Pussycat Dolls founder Robin Antin helped the contestants build their confidence by having them dance in lingerie in a glass box. There are two stripper poles on either side of the cage in all performances. The girls outfits almost always consist of a "dress" that I am convinced is really a long top with matching panties. One of the girls, who admittedly cannot sing at all, was kept of the show for weeks because she can kick her leg over her head effortlessly, presenting portions of the female body that I have never even seen on myself! (Might I add, this high kick is perfectly illustrated to the right...)

"where the sun don't shine" High Kick
by Miss Sarah Hoy

Why is it that a reality show in which women (girls of 18-19 really) repeatedly make fools of themselves so entertaining? Watching girls cry, fight and sing off-key is not only hilarious, but engaging enough to waste one hour of my week on. And while I love America's Next Top Model, it is also another prime example of what happens when 9 or so girls are stuffed together in a house. There is always a bitch, a peacemaker, a naive girl from the country, sassy black girl...There is such a thing as creative editing in all reality shows, but why is it so easy for women to fall into the roles pre-determined for us, not just on TV but in life?
I don't think there are any easy answers to these questions, and as a self-professed "sassy black girl" myself, maybe the clue is that we do this to ourselves. And who can we blame when it inevitably makes for great TV? Some of my obviously more mature friends tell me that they switch the channel immediately after Top Model and I wish I could do the same. From the moment I saw glitter, high kicks and feather boas married with such phrases as "She's got that Las Vegas white trash appeal I love" I was hooked. Thank goodness there's only going to be one season...

By the way, let me introduce my brand-spankin new featured illustrator, Miss Sarah Hoy. Her quirky little drawings capture a childlike spirit, maybe because she spends all day working on children's books as a graphic designer. Sarah's preferred medium is hilighters and ballpoint pens on Post-It Notes.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

RANDOM AWESOME: New York, They've Got You Covered

As I have often remarked since moving here over a year ago, New York City makes a great effort to entertain and occupy its masses. Never have I attended so many free events with open bars, all varieties of swag (free stuff), and amazing bands and artists that I would actually pay to see (and I'm pretty cheap so that's saying quite a bit). Anyway, there are few forms of entertainment that are at their core free---and you would think sex is one of them. Sadly, with the rising cost of healthcare, even that is no longer free. But wait, here comes New York City rushing to save the day! The New York City Health department has taken a step beyond all the other promiscuous big cities and branded their own free condom. The new, dare I say hipper condom was unveiled on Valentine's Day (also National Condom Day) at the Kenneth Cole store in Rockefeller center. The repackaged LifeStyles lubricated condoms features flashy black foil packets emblazoned with colorful motifs of Subway lines. I could make many an amusing quip about subway sex but it's just too easy. Why not just visit NYC Condom and find out where to get some? The NYC Condom is available all over the city at bars, hair salons, restaurants, city buildings and cafes. And did I mention that they are free? Not keeping it in your pants has never been so easy.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

PARTIES: Yo Majesty Graces Bushwick with their Royal Presence

So my first and only experience with Yo Majesty was at an “Ultimate Mega Loft Party” in a converted warehouse in Bushwick and I think I was either too drunk or just drunk enough to appreciate it. This tough girl trio from Tampa started out with "Club Action" a rump shakin club banger that got everyone going. Once Jewel of Yo Majesty started stripping (her signature move) and the Day-Glo necklaces came out I blanked out a bit, but I know the party was awesome.
Unlike most female rappers these days, of which there are few, Yo Majesty relies on bold machismo and grab-your-dick bravado worthy of a crew of construction workers from South Philly. With their wife-beaters, dreads and shades these girls spit rhymes so quick the only words I can remember from Club Action are "club action", but the beat is stuck in my brain.
I've never claimed to be a music aficionado, quite the opposite, so I'll leave the real reviews to those in the know...I copped this from an LA Weekly review Yo Majesty posted on their MySpace, and I find it to be pretty spot on...

"'Daaaamn!' That's all we can say when we listen to the rap riot that is Yo Majesty, three freaky Florida femmes with rhymes spicier than Salt -N-Pepa and bombastic beats that'd make J.J. Fad proud (eat your humps out, Fergie). This old-school girl trio may be naughty — check out the choppy synth bobs and bossy braggadocio of "Kryptonite Pussy" and "Hustle Mode" — but the fierce delivery makes it come off fresh, never forced." - LA Weekly

Sunday, March 4, 2007

RANDOM AWESOME: Jay-Z Renews Former Career as Coke Pusher

Jay-Z's label Rocawear has been commissioned to re-design the Cherry Coke and Cherry Coke Zero cans. As part of the deal with Coca-Cola, Jay-Z is also involved in writing commercial jingles and unveiled the new Cherry Coke can during fashion week in February. Now, I don't really care if Jay-Z chooses to whore himself out commercially as much as possible---the man is trying to become a member of the Knowles family. I am excited about Cherry Coke Zero though...

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

RANDOM AWESOME: Valentine's Day Sucks...

but here are some things that don't...

this awesome new clock I peeped on NOTCOT.org. The face is removable so you can insert your favorite fabric swatch. Since SuckUK is (obviously) based in Britain, they chose a predictable Burberry fabric for the pic. You, however can choose something more in keeping with your decorating scheme. Flamingos perhaps?

Ramblin Worker is an amazing artist who wanted me to be his Flickr friend, I guess because I take close up pictures of cool art. His name is Steve, he doesn't have a bio on his site, but I love everything he makes. Ramblin is showing at MaxFish in May, by the way...

I've been legally allowed to vote for quite some time and I never have. I'm a baaad citizen. So I'm registering in NYC and in keeping with this theme, I love
My.BarackObama.com. Now, I'm not saying I'm voting for him but he is a P-I-M-P for cashing in on the MySpace generation. On his campaign website you can create a profile, network with friends, start an Obama-themed blog, check out his Flickr site...does any of this sound familiar?

my new Jockey thermal long undies with a No Panty Line Promise. They are super-soft, thinner than knit stockings and WARM! Go get you some!

and my friends of course, parties and Sparks...they don't suck at all!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

DESIGN: Virtual Shoe Museum

designer: Meret Oppenheim

The new website Virtual Shoe Museum features a large glossary of the newest shoe designs categorized by designer, color, focus (ankle, buckle, print, instep, etc.), use, style and materials. Don't expect to find strappy sandals and Manolos here though. These shoes are almost strictly experimental designers you probably haven't heard of. Notably, Vivienne Westwood and Vincent Van Gogh are featured. Irregular Choice is the only designer I found that is actually widely available in stores.

The website was initiated by Liza Snook in 2004. She has searched for designers and photographers to help launch the site and now it boasts some of the most beautiful, precious, strange and impossible shoe designs I have ever seen all in one place.

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designer: Roswitha Van Rijn

DESIGN: Fill in the Cat!

NEL is a collective of designers who collaborate in experimental projects that explore design through materials, techniques and applications. They first showed "Stitch Kit" in Milan, which can be seen on their website.

The project I found the most interesting (probably because I'm a cat person) was "Fill in the Cat", shown in Milan in 2006. The designers carve images of a cat, bird and stack of books from large white blocks. The resultant empty space is then filled with personal belongings, as shown at right.
The use of the objects then changes the space and its meaning generating "a continuously changing story: a cat that reads Italo Calvino, a book filled with coins, a living room where birds come to eat the cake's crumbles… "

PARTIES: Girl Talk at Studio B

Last night Pittsburgh-born act Girl Talk (a.k.a. Gregg) performed his hits at Greenpoint's newest venue Studio B. Girl Talk is super hyped up, and after the show I know why. Studio B was packed to capacity with the 18 and over crowd (making a party 18 and up is a sure way to sell out a venue, especially when none of the bartenders check wristbands). Everyone was excited, drunk, pushing---there was actually no need to dance, just stand still and "everyone can move together", as Gregg often screamed over the crowd.

About 50 people were also on the stage, sweating and stripping down to "I've Got the Power" and Billy Joel's "Rich Girl" played under Lil' Wayne, Jay-Z and LL Cool J hits---all within 2 minutes. Girl Talk is cut-tastic pop, all your favorites chopped and screwed up together making for some awesome party tracks. It's hard to explain how fast each song is mashed together, check out his MySpace for a clue.

Which made it all the worse that I had little to no dance space! As my girl Leah oft remarked last night, Girl Talk would be great at a house party, where the keg and the cheap liquor keep flowing and the crowd is guaranteed to be at least over 20 (not 16 with a fake ID)...All in all, it was worth it just to see the spectacle and the crowd surfing. Oh and the fact that was completely lax security in the backstage area and we hung out there for a couple hours dining on free ham, Brie and those little boxes of SunMaid raisins I haven't seen since I was a kid.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

PARTIES: DJ Premier at the Rub!

Williamsburg and Bushwick are chock full of crazy warehouse parties and bars and various other places to get drunk, krunk and whatever suits your fancy. Waaay down here in Southern Brooklyn, we have The Rub. This monthly hip-hop/soul/funk part-ay is a mainstay in Southern Brooklyn, headlined by DJs Cosmo Baker, DJ Ayres and DJ Eleven. It's about the only place, besides someone's under-sized apartment, to really get down.

So...then I want to somehow make people understand
DJ Premier 's awesomeness and I can't. But Wikipedia always has the answer.

"Christopher E. Martin, better known as DJ Premier is a prominent Hip Hop producer and DJ, and the instrumental half of the duo Gang Starr, together with MC Guru.
Most consider DJ Premier to be one of the greatest producers in the history of hip-hop. Many see him as the single best."

Oh wait, and he's worked with EVERYONE...including Nas, Jay-Z, Biggie Smalls, Common, Mos Def, Fat Joe, Brand Nubian, Big Daddy Kane, Heavy D, Limp Bizkit(?). I said everyone.

And The Rub plus DJ Premier, WTF!?! On February 3rd, at approximately 1AM, DJ Premier took the turntables at Southpaw and made them his bitch. He played everything I wanted to hear, and everything I didn't know I wanted to hear and we all danced and danced and danced. And now we all know that when The Rub says guest DJ, we should all stand up take notice. And if you weren't there, it so sucks to be you right now.

Monday, February 5, 2007

DESIGN: Ron Mueck and the Brooklyn Museum

Australian-born Ron Mueck's self-titled show at the Brooklyn Museum has seemingly been on everyone's mind (and in Time Out NY) for the past few weeks. I had to work through a major hangover to go on Sunday when I found out it was the last day it would be on view, and it was definitely worth it. Very rarely do I see a show I dislike, but I also rarely see a show that inspires me as much. Mueck's sculptures are all either much larger than life, or very small; what they all have in common is their exquisite details. Each statue looks as though it might shift, breathe, pounce at any moment. Every hair, eyelash, even the creases on elbows and knees are amazingly more than life-like; if it was not for their size, anyone would mistake one of Mueck's pieces for a real-life human being. Please note the size of the woman in the chair next to the work featured above, "In Bed". She is dwarfed by the head alone.

The artist honed his skill during his years working in puppetry and special effects in film and television. Generally using fiberglass and silicon, Mueck sculpts each piece alone, only employing assistance in the largest pieces. He always creates the eyes himself, which I find to be touching; each piece seems to gaze almost accusingly at the viewer, as though to wonder why they are being studied in such vulnerable poses. This is Mueck's last show before the collection moves on to Ottawa, Canada, so hopefully whoever wanted to go went already. If you didn't see the show, there is a video which details how the works are made is up on blip.tv. This video was filmed during the artist's residency at the National Gallery in London. While it cannot compare with seeing it live, it is always amazing to see an artist ply their craft.
If you don't have a high-speed internet connection, there is a short excerpt from the video on the Brooklyn Museum's website.

DESIGN: Design Life Triennial 2006 pt. 2

I went to the Triennial on Saturday, and, surprisingly I have very little to say. Except for please go see it---there are no words. Three floors of the Cooper-Hewitt are literally covered in "experimental designs and emerging ideas" from wall to wall. There is something for everyone and it seems that the designers featured are pulling out the stops to bring us the brightest and the best.
The only downside is that you would think that an exhibit about design would attempt to grab the eye and flow a bit better. It can be a little stagnant at times...especially at the Ipod display...but I still think it's worth it.
I wouldn't want to ruin anything but definitely remember to #1: look up, there's awesome things to see on the ceiling, #2: bring some handi-wipes, your fingers will be covered in chalk, #3: no pictures, please! so if you know how to turn the flash off on your camera phone, use that instead when no one is looking.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

DESIGN: Design Life Triennial 2006

Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum is currently hosting the National Design Life Triennial 2006. Now for all of you who have been majorly lax on getting out to galleries and museums, this is the one for you. Boasting the talents of 87 American designers, the exhibitors span from established trendsetters to bright newcomers. Who I'm excited to see: KidRobot (amazing toy distributors and solely responsible of the brightly patterned men's sweatshirt trend), Narciso Rodriguez (monochromatic all-star and SJP's favorite fashion designer), and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (self-explanatory).

I'll make a more formal review once I actually go, but check out some pictures from the Design Life site. Or actually visit the site yourself:
Design Life Now because it’s so nice to see people doing what they (presumably) love to do…especially while I’m chasing belt submits from Hong Kong.

DESIGN: It Came From the 80's!

My new favorite site is NOTCOT.org and my favorite item on it is the Optimus Prime Transformer paper robot pictured at left. You can find his awesomeness at Paper Robots 1999.com , complete with instructions and a free PDF color printout. And, oh wait did I mention this paper robot actually transforms? I'm pretty damn lazy so our CAD designer is going to make two and we'll fight them!
Anyway, NOTCOT.org is the brainchild of Jean Aw, a young L.A. designer who apparently spends much of her day scoping the web for some of the most intriguing items I've ever seen. Oh and also traveling the globe looking for "designer hotspots"...did I mention I'm so jealous? Please visit her site, you'll find something awesome to gawk at.

Monday, January 29, 2007

The Bogota Bistro

Pan-Latin Cuisine meets Park Slope

I’ve been ignoring the small neon sign of Bogota Bistro for quite some time now, because from the outside it looks like a bar full of bar food, like gourmet potato skins and chicken wings. Plus 5th Avenue in Park Slope is overstuffed with restaurants --- numerous Asian fusion and Mexican joints that I’ve enjoyed for a year or more. What a fool I’ve been! Bogota, named for the capital of Colombia, features authentic Pan-Latin cuisine, live bands and an extensive cocktail and wine list.

The décor consists of mucho crazy stuff on the walls, but not in a nasty T.G.I. Friday’s way. My favorite was a Warhol knock-off of a pouty Latina. The murals and plastic ice cube encased lights also add to the festive interior. The atmosphere is LOUD, which could be bad for intimate conversation, or great for a first date with someone you aren’t sure you have anything in common with. Or dinner with your boyfriend’s mom or a former friend from high school you definitely have nothing in common with

I started out with a drink because, 1) I just came from work and 2) Happy Hour lasts all night long from Monday to Wednesday. The strawberry margarita is a little more fruity than boozy --- it has frozen strawberry chunks at the bottom. They also feature the Brazilian national drink, the caipirinha. I skipped the appetizers and had the breaded and fried porkchops, sweet plantains and seasoned rice which were all tender, perfect and flavorful respectively. My only complaint is that all the sauces were spicy and a chilli pepper-a-phobe like myself would like a mild option. My dinner mates had roasted chicken with cilantro mashed potatoes and a skirt steak sandwich with a side salad. The chicken was good, not special but the cilantro mashed potatoes were green and extremely tasty, I definitely recommend those.

All in all it was a satisfying meal, and worth the $20 tab. Also notable, you can skip the meal and just get drinks at the (slightly raucous) bar, though missing out on the food would be somewhat of a travesty.

Appetizers: $4 - $8
Sandwiches: $9
Entrees: $12 - $24
Drinks: $5 (Happy Hour) - $9 for cocktails

Radical Lace & Subversive Knitting

Arsenic & Lace

Knitting and crocheting have enjoyed a surprising surge in popularity in the last decade, mostly due to stressed out celebutantes who knit scarves. Now traditionally female fiber arts have been embraced by youth culture; there is even a knitting circle (Cast Off) based in the London Underground. The thirty international artists featured in Radical Lace & Subversive Knitting use a variety of materials (including old car parts, paper doilies, wires, fiber optics, video) in traditional and completely new ways to create works that shock and inspire.

Dave Cole's small teddy bear knit out of gunmetal-colored lead yarn is adorable---and poisonous to the touch. An intricate crochet blanket reads “IT SUCKS” in the center, the artist’s commentary on how much it must suck to crochet for a living. Freddie Robins, a political guerilla knitter from the U.K., showcases an S&M style bodysuit knit of gray yarn and pierced with knitting needles and embroidered with the words “Craft Kills”. These pieces compel the viewer to re-think grandma’s tatted lace pillows, especially in light of Hildur Bjarnadóttir’s tatted lace tablecloth complete with skulls. Visit the museum website for just a taste of the three floors of fiber arts currently on display.

A Peek In Her Closet --- A New Couture Exhibit at the Met

“There are no chic women in America. The one exception is Nan Kempner” ---Diana Vreeland.

Though Nan Kempner worked as the fashion editor for Harper’s bazaar, as a contributing editor for French Vogue, and a consultant for Tiffany’s, the role she is most remembered for is “the world’s most famous clotheshorse”. The Nan Kempner: American Chic exhibit at the Costume Institute showcases some of the most daring and exquisite pieces from this Best Dressed Hall of Famer’s closet.

Highlights include a YSL silk faille gold opera coat, a Phillip Treacy hat made from feathers, and a striped evening jacket with intricately-draped sleeves. It is interesting to observe that Kempner definitely had favorite themes, most notably nautical and sea-life. There is a YSL raw silk jacket decorated with nautilus shells, a few dazzling coral and gold necklaces, and (my personal favorite) Judith Leiber purse fashioned from a nautilus and red leather.

While she collected pieces from various couture designers, she was faithful to a fault to Yves St. Laurent, saying that he designed clothes that fit her body perfectly because he designed for people like himself. Other designers Kempner favored included Oscar de la Renta, Michael Kors, Madame Gres, and Valentino. Unlike her contemporaries, she mixed and matched haute couture designer and ready to wear outfits liberally to suit her tastes, earning her the reputation of refined Park Avenue elegance.

Slender, tan, blonde, rich and notable for saying “I loathe fat people”, I dare you to love her anyway, if not for her uber-chic tailored power suits, then for her sweet peach ruffled coming out dress designed by Jean Dessès. This full skirted crinoline-lined dress covered in lace ruffles is the first of many pieces she donated to the museum before she died in 2005 of emphysema. Kempner started smoking at 14 and was known to alternate her breathing mask with a cigarette and champagne; she died at 74 leaving this legacy of haute couture, quite possibly the last great couture collection in the world, spanning 6 decades of American and European fashion.

"I want to be buried naked, I know there's a store where I'm going." ---Nan Kempner

The Party's Over --- An Ancient Story from the Summer

September 06

So for those of you who didn’t know and are currently kicking yourselves, the Williamsburg venue McCarren Pool has been hosting free (FREE!) parties all summer featuring bands that you’d normally have to pay $20 and up to see in a hot smoky bar/party/basement and a featured DJ spinning between sets. The Bon Savants, Deerhoof and Of Montreal were just a few. The best part, other than not having to lug my bulky wallet around, is that the venue is actually a large, drained community pool with a Slip & Slide, a Ben & Jerry’s truck and organic burgers and hot dogs.

This last pool party was headlined by none other than fellow Philly alum MC SpankRock, the skinny jean-wearing, fitted cap-sporting porn rapper that makes it cool for indie hip-hoppers to wear belly shirts. Gang Gang Dance, Shy Child, and Nuclear Family started the show, with the Rub DJs/Park Slope heroes Cosmo Baker and DJ Ayres supplying the background beats. When SpankRock took the stage the crowd could not have been more excited---until M.I.A. and Diplo surprised everyone with a cameo and the pool was covered in rainbow confetti, balloons and Brooklyn Lager. All in all, a purely satisfying end to the summer---see everyone next year!

Mission Statement

Yesterday, in the midst of nursing a hangover, I had an early-life crisis...which I define as having any sort of empty-nest syndrome type melodrama over failed life goals before one hits 35. I miss writing and I miss people reading my writing, even if it was only my friends. I frantically authored 4 writing samples and sent them off to websites looking for bloggers and now I've posted them here. There's no running theme expect for maybe things to do on a Saturday in New York City.