Thursday, January 31, 2013

'Sup

'Tis time for more bullet points so I can clear the randomness out of my noggin.

  • Vine. Ya heard? Get with it. It's an app. I'm posting cat videos like there's no tomorrow. My user name is zeromusings. Instagram is, like, so early January.
  •  I had to wear a heart monitor yesterday (did it before, no biggie, blah blah I'm not dying don't worry) and holy damn if the bizzle who put the electrode thingies on didn't scratch the everloving bejeezus out of my chest. I forgot how much that shit hurts. 
  • I submitted my book in a publishing contest with Amazon! Isn't that funny? Decided to wait until Round 2 (when they decide which authors move forward) to self-publish. If I move forward, I'll hold off again. That'll be mid-February, so stay tuned. (I fully expect to be eliminated)
  •  I can't decide whether or not I should be eating gluten. Whole grains are good ... but not gluten? I don't even know. Haven't people been eating bread for, like, thousands of years? 
  • Found out the place I quit working so I could become a full-time hermit/author had massive layoffs a few months ago. I probably would have been among the casualties. Wowee! I'm so glad for my sake and theirs that I got out of there. I probably would not have taken it well. By which I mean I would have burned that mother-effer down. 
  • God help me if I ever need another real job in an office or something. Google will not be my friend. 
  • I'm reading a new book about why everyone is fat. I simply cannot get enough of this topic. My favorite part so far is how the author says it's not our fault we're fat.
  • I'm sort of stealing this bullet point from a friend, but ... omg New Girl. The kiss? Yeah. That's the stuff. All day, every day. Except for they can't get together or I'm gonna stop watching.
  • Oh yeah. I'm thinking about going back to school for my MFA. I might be ... stupid. Me plus school has never equaled great success. But I really like writing, so? Maybe I should? Are MFAs good? Or do you just end up making your brain explode by over-analyzing other people's writing? 
  •  The other day one of the plugs in the bathroom started making a noise like the Russians were coming. It sounded like RRRAAAAAEEEEEEEEGGG. I mean. Who knew plugs could even make that kind of noise? It was alarming, to say the least. And then smoke came out of it. So I'm guessing that doesn't mean anything good. I spoke with our electrician and they suggest I not use that particular outlet until they have a chance to look at it. Heh. 
  • What would have been really funny is if the plug had made that noise while I was wearing the heart monitor. Heh. 
  •  I saw Argo a while ago, and yeah, it was good, but award winning? I'm not sure, dudes. Also, I saw Zero Dark Thirty and thought it was good as well, but I felt mildly uncomfortable watching it. And not because of the torture, which I thought was the best part. But because it's a movie about a dude we actually hunted and killed and now as a nation we are watching it and praising it and that just feels weird. Whereas when I was happy at the actual time that he was killed -- that didn't feel weird. It felt righteous and awesome. Although the crowds that gathered to cheer at the White House -- that felt weird. Maybe there is a thin line between tasteful pleasure in vengeance and celebration of death. 
  • I could keep going for a while, man. But I'm gonna stop here and go argue with myself about what to eat for a snack. Toodles.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Bachelor, Ep. 4: "Tierra-ble"

Ok, folks. You're busy people, so let's make this brief.

Obligatory shirtless shot. This time with underwear instead of blue shorts. 

Now. Can we all agree Sean's dates are The Worst Dates Ever? Ok, let's proceed.

Leslie H is already upset because she wasn't chosen for the first date, even though she is "here for the right reasons." We all take a drink. 



 Nope. Selma got picked for the horrible, horrible first date, which meant she got to go rock climbing. 
Which really sucks.



 They made it to the top of the rock. Her decolletage glints in the light of the setting sun. 


 Then later she's like: Oh yeah, I'm Muslim and my parents are conservative and there's no way I can kiss you unless I'm the last girl standing. 

So of course now he's REALLY into her. Prediction -- she's in the final 2. My other final girl is still Catherine. Scoff all you want.

Ok, now time for really, the Worst Date Ever, Ever. Roller derby. Does Sean realize he's dating a bunch of chicks? Would he like to date a dude with a vagina? I think that's what he's really after.

 Sarah has fricking had it. Girlfriend only has one arm, k? She's got major balance issues. 
I want to punch Sean in the face for her. 


 Tierra's being a bitch as usual. 


 Amanda was being a douche and then fell down and hit her chin and had to go to the hospital. 
See ya.


 And then Robyn's like, I will cut a bitch. Meaning Tierra. And I'm like: Do it.

And Catherine's like: Tierra is Tierra-ble.

 And then Sean is getting it on with Lindsay. 

Which makes Tierra a cranky fucking baby. I'll tell you why she gets everything she wants. It's because her daddy buys it for her. That is the face of a spoiled-ass brat.


 So Sean is like, I can't resist your ugly-cry face, so I'mma give you the rose. And this face? Is the face of a spoiled-ass brat that got her way. Touche, Tierra. Tou-fricking-che.


Now it's time for Leslie H's date. She gets the "Pretty Woman" date where they get to wear jewels and a dress and shoes and crap.

 Which is her consolation prize for getting kicked out at the end of dinner. Toodle-oo, Leslie H! She does say on her way out that she's "here for the right reasons," and that some of the other girls are not "here for the right reasons. We drink twice. 


Sarah gives good side-eyes. Also, nice braid! Which there's no way she braided herself. 


 Unsurprisingly, Amanda gets eliminated. Nice chin-shiner. 


Next week, guys .... next week they are airing two episodes, one on Monday and another on Tuesday.

This is cruel and unusual punishment. FOUR hours of this crud in one week?! 

But I guess Tierra gets hypothermia, so at least there's that to look forward to. Unless she frigging FAKING it again. The big fake baby.



Episode 3 recap: Let's take this to the next level
Episode 2 recap: I'm a vegan but I love the beef
Episode 1 recap: Who does this, indeed

Monday, January 28, 2013

books!

Lovely, lovely, books. Te amo. Never leave me. And also: God bless the Kindle.

Here are a few books for your consideration.


I read The Night Circus after Ginger said she liked it, although she suspected there might be a hidden meaning she hadn't caught. I read the book with that suspicion; like, this has got to be about politics or something? But actually, I think it's just a fantasy novel. A really imaginative, lovely fantasy novel that's a bit suspenseful and very well-written.

The main gist is there are two magicians of sorts who have pitted two young people against each other in some kind of mysterious competition. Much of the competition takes place within the confines of a strange and wonderful circus. This is where Morgenstern's creativity really shines. I think it's a delightful novel and gave it four out of five stars on goodreads, docking one for a bit of vagueness, which I'm never a huge fan of.


I asked for White Jacket Required for my birthday because Jenna Weber is my most recent food-blogger crush. Everything she makes is unfailingly delicious. She's a trained chef who comes up with really flavorful, easy-to-make recipes. I knew some of Weber's back story and was curious to read her full story.

So I am thrilled that the book contains several recipes! I'll be trying every single one, I promise. And I found her story interesting in a list-of-facts kind of way since I am a fan girl, much like I used to be a Pioneer Woman fan girl (she is still cool and has some good recipes but I've been skunked too many times on recipes-gone-wrong). The best part of the book is near the end when she gets very real about a tragic event in her life. My issue with the memoir (aside from my belief that writing a memoir in your 20s is a bit premature) is that she's not writing like no one is reading. This is another thing Ginger once wrote, that the best writing happens when you're writing for yourself, like no one is reading. In WJR, I just kind of felt like she was worried about offending someone or revealing too much, so she scrubbed it clean until it was a little dull. That said, I still gave it three stars because I am super excited about the recipes.


Ok, best for last! The Dog Stars is a five-star novel. I absolutely loved it.

Here's something that won't surprise you: It's post-apocalyptic. I know. I know! Yes, Amazon does send me emails saying: Here are more post-apocalyptic novels you might like!

They really do.

And here's something for which I should have deducted at least one star: It's written Cormac McCarthy-style, by which I mean punctuation has sort of gone out the window. It's like stream of consciousness. I have no issue with writing in that style, except that McCarthy also wrote a post-apocalyptic novel many of us have read (or seen the movie) called The Road. So Heller is treading on dangerous ground here.

But I didn't deduct any stars because what the book ends up being is poetry disguised as a novel. It's beautiful.

The premise is it's nine years after a major die-off of humans and some animals and plants resulting from a deadly flu. Our protagonist, Hig, is living on a small airport with his dog Jasper and a gun-nut named Bangley. That's all I'll say about the plot.

It ends up being suspenseful, heartbreaking, uplifting ... just really lovely. I really didn't want it to end. You should read it.


What are you reading? I just started vN (The Machine Dynasty #1) ... it's not really post-apocalyptic! It's sci-fi, though. Humanoids and such. Only a $5 download.

I almost read a book called Breed because it's about an infertile couple who try a new treatment that works but turns them into werewolves or something? But I didn't even finish reading the sample download because the fertility info was all crap. Do your research, dude.

And I just ordered a book called Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity, And Disease, because my husband heard the author speak on NPR and thinks the dude is on to something. Sugar definitely is the white devil.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Bachelor, Ep. 3: Let's take this to the next level

For starters, I think they got all of Sean's obligatory shirtless scenes out of the way in one day. Otherwise dude just wears blue shorts and shoes every day. Which is possible. Anyway, here is this week's obligatory shirtless shot.


Now on to Date #1 with Lesley M, who is ready to "take it to the next level." Idea! Every time someone says "the next level" on this show, we drink. Also, "I'm here for the right reasons."

Each time Sean goes on a date I feel like it is the worst date I have ever seen. Until we see the next date. So, on this date, they're at the Guinness museum and have to perform the longest on-screen kiss while something like 200 people watch them, and I'm feelin' like this is the worst date ever. They then proceed to press each other's faces together really horribly. All I know is if someone tried to give me the stiff-lip for three minutes and 16 seconds, I'd karate chop them in the neck.


 True story: During this kiss, my cat Simon began licking his butthole and did so for longer and with more passion than these two. 
Later on when they're not performing heroic feats, Sean slips her some actual tongue and gives her the date rose. I honestly don't think she's as into him as he is into her. Thoughts?

Ok, Date #2 is the group date with 12 women. This one also looks like the worst date ever, as all the women have been shoved in ill-fitting sports bikinis and forced to compete for the second half of the date. The losers go home. 


 Our model, Kristy, is upset. You know what I think really tears these girls up? That their looks can't save them for, like, the first time in their lives. Disappointment is a real slap in the face, dudes.


 "I just wanted some time." That should be another phrase we drink to. 


 Ok, Crazypants Amanda gets to go on the second half of the date, and she's acting creepily cheerful. Girl is really super creepy. She says to Sean: "I would bring such a light, airy, fun atmosphere" to their relationship. AYFKM. People who bring "light, airy, fun atmospheres" to stuff don't actually say it, you frickin' psycho. 


 And Desiree is like, yeah, Amanda is psycho. Word. 


 And then Kacie, the brainiac, gets the splendid idea to tell Sean she's "caught in the middle" of Desiree and Amanda because Desiree doesn't like Amanda. And Sean is like: how are you even in the middle? Why are you even telling me this? You are acting crazy. And then Kacie is like: dude, my dumb plan totally backfired. Kacie. Go to therapy, dude. 

On the group date, Sean ends up giving Lindsay the rose. She's the wedding dress chick? Whatever. She's not gonna last.

OK now for the moment we've all been waiting for -- when Tierra "falls" down the stairs. For starters I just want to say that ABC was really misleading in their previews, because their editing made it seem like she'd been pushed. They dubbed the sound of Tierra crying and saying "I hope you're happy" or something like that over the image of her lying on the stairs. Which is really dishonest and I'm not sure I approve.

All right on to the nitty gritty.

 That is some graceful stair-falling, dude. 

So here's the deal. Tierra put on a cute little mesh top and a full face of makeup and then banged her hands on the walls to make it sound like she'd taken a tumble. Do you see those stairs? If you fell down those, you would be seriously injured.

 Sarah is rightfully dubious. 


So of course they call an ambulance, and the paramedics put her on the stretcher and then she INSISTS she is suddenly fine and coherent and refuses treatment. Red flag, dudes.


Then Sean is hanging out with her and she is right as rain. No problems whatsoever now, whereas moments before she'd been supposedly unable to answer even basic questions. Uh huh. Sure. 


Meanwhile, all this Tierra-falling-down-the-stairs nonsense is horning in on AshLee's date, and AshLee ain't buying Tierra's story. 


And then Sean ruins AshLee's hair in the convertible. 

They head off to Six Flags, where they hang out with a couple girls who have chronic illnesses for a while, which is nice and all but kind of a crappy date. Although I suppose if he was going to go on this date with anyone, it should be AshLee, since she was a foster kid who was abused and then finally adopted at age 6. When she told the story about when her adopted dad met her Sean teared up and so did I. She's probably my favorite at this point but I don't think she's gonna be the one.

Sean getting a little misty-eyed


 Ok I don't know where this picture fits into everything, I just thought it was weird how different Selma looks without makeup.

Now it's time for the cocktail party ...

 ... at which Sean surprises Sarah with her dog. Nice. 


 And Desiree wears a cool dress.


And Kacie B wears ... I am not sure what. I don't think I like it, though. Anyway, she gets eliminated for being a dumbass, and then Kristy (the model!) and Taryn are also eliminated. 

Next week I think Catherine and Leslie are going to get more screen time. Mostly I just want to see what shenanigans Amanda and Tierra get up to, though.

Thoughts? Swear words? Irritations? Likes?


Read Episode 2's recap
Read Episode 1's recap

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

There she is

It's nice to have reached an age when the prospect of hanging out with a group of women I don't know is no longer frightening. At some point (probably the point that I became old), women became friendly and it was like we could all hang out and just drink wine and cackle in our sweatpants. Is it because we're in our 30s now? Is there something about a woman's 20s that make her insane? I think this is possible.

In any case, my friend Suzanne invited me over Saturday night to watch the Miss America pageant. Which is kind of funny, huh? And there were a bunch of ladies I didn't know who were there, too, and there was really good food and wine and we laughed a lot and it was FUN. And I'm not just saying that because I ended up winning $40 by earning the most points via my choices of the best competitors in each category.

Women are vastly different animals than men, and I think it does it good to hang out with our own kind now and then.

I brought wine and these certain treats to the party ...

 

I know you're thinking, oh cool, rice krispie treats. And indeed, that is what these are. EXCEPT for they were made using Smitten Kitchen's recipe, which means you double the butter, brown it, and add a little salt. Once you taste them, you basically decide you know how you want to die: By eating these until your stomach ruptures.

All but one square got eaten at the ladies' gathering (no one ever wants to take the last one!), and when I returned home later, my husband and his friend had eaten most of the other pan I'd made for them so they wouldn't feel sad that they were missing out on gooey sweet buttery deliciousness. It was an impressive feat.

So in all it was a successful evening and I've decided I need more of all of the above in my life; lady-time and rice krispie treats.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Bachelor, Ep. 2: I'm a vegan, but I love The Beef

Well, none of my top girls made any big moves this episode, so I'm starting to have my doubts about them. But, I just need to remember Jef moved verrrry slow, too.

By the way, apparently Jef is something of a fame whore? Did the whole thing for the publicity. He and Emily are off. I have very reliable sources (Us Magazine). My sources also seem to believe Emily cheated on Jef, but I call bullshit on that.

Maybe.

Ok let's hop to it.

First of all, your obligatory Sean-looking-frightened-in-the-shower pic.



DATE 1

Sean takes Sarah out on a date. To refresh your memory, she's our one-armed bachelorette.

Ain't no thang. Just takin' my one-armed girl out for a a little free-falling off a skyscraper. 




My idea of the worst date ever. 

At first I felt kind of bad for ol' one-arm because, like, she only has one arm and here Sean has chosen her for kind of a physical date that's scary and potentially dangerous. But turns out I was wrong because afterward she told him a story about how once she tried to go ziplining and they wouldn't let her because of the one-arm situash. 

I really like her. She is so not making it to the end. 


 She gets the date rose and they kiss but it's, like ... hens pecking seeds off the ground or something. Super unsexy. 


DATE 2 - GROUP DATE

There are something like 13 girls on the group date. Kristy, Amanda, Selma, Brooke, Lesley M (gawdamnit we still have two Leslies), Daniella, Kacie, Robyn, Catherine, Katie, Taryn, and Tierra. I think I'm missing at least one but whatever. 

So for the date they are going to have photoshoots to see who can shoot the best Harlequin cover, which is a GREAT idea and I can't believe hasn't been done sooner on this show. But I'm not sure if any of these chicks has ever seen the cover of a romance novel because they seem to think just staring googly-eyed at Sean is gonna do the trick. Nuh-uh, dudes. 

 Ok, also, Robyn doesn't like Tierra. 
Here we're beginning to establish that Tierra is probably the villain of the season. 
Also, I like Robyn, even though I don't think she's going to make it far. She asks Sean at one point about how race plays into this whole thing (major points for just putting it out there), and he says he doesn't have a type and that his last girlfriend was black. Which actually makes me like him more, for some reason. Shoot. 


 Lesley M's idea of a hot book cover is apparently trying to look like Sean's kisses make her want to vom dot com. Really un-hot. 


 Tierra gets her hen-peck after being a whiny bizzle forever. 


 This is seriously the worst kissing I have ever seen, Lesley M. 


 Kristy, who is a model, is the only one who seems to understand what the object of the date is. 
She wins. 


 Selma was largely underwhelming this episode, although she did teach Sean something in Farsi. 


 Speaking of barf, Kacie B always looks like she just ate something bad and/or she is judging you. 


 Big Hair has left the building. I think her name is Katie. She decided the show wasn't for her and she went bye-bye. Good choice, dude!


 Kacie B won the date rose, which was weird and unexpected. She did smile, though, so at least she doesn't have that sour look on her face.


DATE 3

Sean takes Desiree out. I'm already disappointed that Desiree doesn't seem like she's going to work out, seeing as how her ex is gonna show up at some point this season and ruin everything. 

So anyway. First Sean takes her to an art gallery, where he plays a trick on her, blah blah blah. What happens is a piece of "art" falls and breaks and she gets blamed for it, yadda yadda. I found it to be pretty juvenile on Sean's part, although I admit the ugly piece of art falling and breaking was HELLA funny. 

 Desiree's face in the hidden cam after the art falls and breaks. 

Sean tells her it's a joke, everyone laughs, yawn. They go back to his place for dinner and making out in the pool. I think she's his favorite.

COCKTAIL PARTY

So most importantly, Amanda is super crazy pants. Girls were asking her questions and she was just sitting there with this pissed look on her face, acting like she didn't hear them. My husband asked if she was stroking out. But she apparently was not, because when Sean shows up and asks to talk with her she's all smiles. Girl really scares me.



 
Poor AshLee (Gaaaaaahhh why) didn't get to go on a date this week. Here she's just talking about what a trainwreck Amanda is. I believe she called her a "tornado of negativity." As a refresher, AshLee, Catherine, and Selma are my top girls.

Here's Catherine, in case you're forgetting what she looked like. She had one of the best quotes of the night -- "I'm a vegan, but I like the beef." Har. Har, har, har.

Aaaand that's a wrap! Thoughts? Comments? Suggestions?



To read my recap of Episode 1, click here.