Monday, May 29, 2006

Dionne Warwick is Love: In Good Times, In Bad Times, I'll Be On Your Side Forever-More

I don't like American Idol. Well, I watched it the summer Ruben won, but I did a lot of things during the Summer of 2003 that were bad/awesome for me -- I watched reality television, ate nothing but peanut butter and melted cheese, bought a shiny white used Lexus (Awesome!) and drank vodka while waitressing. [I mixed it with Vitamin Water and drank from the Vitamin Water bottle. I totally still do this, because I'm Forever Young.] But I was living with girls who said things like "I used to want to be a dentist! I totally wanted to go to dentistry school, but I don't know why! Isn't that weird?" after watching dental reconstruction on Extreme Makeover, and thus, Idol was often on.

I get embarrassed for the really bad singers ... and I think Paula Abdul has lost her mind and that's similarly painful to witness.

But boy was I glad that I saw it last week! [Haviland had what the people call "McPheever."] 'Cause it completed the WOC* circle of Dionne Warwick! To refresh:

1. Dionne Warwick Incident One: Haviland and I discuss the music of Ms. Warwick during an initial AIM conversation.

2. DW Incident Two: as mentioned in an earlier blog post, we're strolling along the street, checking out some funny scattered trash when we notice that a Dionne Warwick album is inexplicably also literally sitting on the street, at which point we both wet our pants (in spirit).

3. DW Incident Three: After witnessing several performances starring "Soul Patrol," McPheever and various lite-rock-radio favorites, like Meatloaf and a [creepy looking] Clay Aiken, we joked that DW had to be next!

Lo and behold....
she totally was.

*Weird/Of Course: Adjective describing the myriad of ways in which the universe collides, narrows, and kicks ass--a coincidence on a massive and clearly cosmic scale.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

She Aches Just Like a Woman, But She Writes Just Like a Little Girl

Thanks to Gawker, I was super-popular for 15 minutes yesterday. It was awesome! I celebrated this moment of glory by talking to all my famous friends and not doing any work for the rest of the day!

BUT what's even awesomer, is this comment, attributed to "Worker 3116" on Gawker:

"I'm not sure I believe this chart. It is suspiciously lacking in the Teen Beat pin-ups and Bonnie Bell Lipsmackers references that everything else about it implies should be there."

I do honestly think it's the awesomest to call me out (really! I heart freedom of speech, etc.) but the contents of this particular comment are just far too ironic for me to overlook. (And I'm not even going to discuss how gross it'd be to buy chapstick on craigslist. Although--there's a lot of other craigslist-thriving industries that present a similar risk of orally transmitted infections, so who knows, I mean, Dr.Pepper Lip Smackers tastes almost like real Dr.Pepper.)

Though the "Craigslist-Chart Post" did not, in fact, include references to LipSmackers or Teen Beat--I do in fact, reference both of those things in other blog posts. Yes, that's correct! I am exactly as you inferred!

Worker 3116.....
Are you a unicorn?
Are you my mother? (JK Mom! I know your AOL dial-up 14.4k modem hasn't finished loading the Gawker page yet! Love you!)
Are you five steps ahead of me already, which means you knew this before posting it? (In which case: you win.)

Although I never bought an issue of Teen Beat, a further dig into my blog would have found the following Teen Beaty references:

On Sunday May 7th, in the blog post entitled "I don't have a plan. That's the point." I wrote:

In 1997, Ryan Clayburn told me I'd never get laid unless I removed my teeny-bopper room decor like my Jared Leto-Claire Danes themed closet or the CK-One ads/Leonardo DiCaprio collage over my bed ...

On Monday April 10th, in a blog post entitled "Oh, ElleGirl, you're such a tease!"I shared the following tidbit:

I've never managed to sit through an entire episode of Gilmore Girls, but every EG cover-girl reminds me of Rory Gilmore. I mean, Emma Roberts? Emma Watson? Amanda Bynes? Who the hell are those girls? Hogwarts! I don't know, but I bet they had a debutante party, and she probably invited Mischa Barton, Nicole Richie, and all the other girls who smoke Newports and skip class. It's better than pink lemonade lip smackers! MMMM.

Furthermore, I totally wore Bonnie Bell Lip Smackers on a necklace for three years. My friend Jordan, who was hotter (cooler) than me, made the necklace using embroidery thread (clearly she made this crafty gift by safety-pinning the thread to her shoelaces), and I wore the hell out of that thing. My mother was "seriously unimpressed" when I dared to wear the Lip Smackers necklace on 9th grade school picture day. I was "seriously unimpressed" that I still had braces with rubber bands, so whatever. Every adolescent mouth deserves at least a smidgen of happiness.

Because I don't ever want to have a successful social life or a career, I spent two hours this evening digging around in boxes to find the aforementioned school photo, to no avail. Most of the photos from that time period have been destroyed, because they are frightening. So this was the best I could do:

While we're on the topic of my relationship to Teen Beat, I'd like to share a photograph. A few weeks ago, Haviland and Lainy and I dressed up as The Spice Girls and went out for Cinco De Mayo. Obviously I was Sporty Spice.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Six Degrees of Craigy McCraigerson

Spring 2003, Yaffa Cafe: Meg bounces on the red sticky glittery plastic of her chair and asks, Grasshopper, do you know about craigslist?

I still had another 16 months before I'd move to NYC, and I was drunk and trendy and obscenely thin, wearing the coolest Freewheelin' Sweet Marie jacket of all time, picking at vegetables and professing cross-country love to Scot via text message. No, I said.

Well, you can find a sublet there. For next summer. It's just the best!

So in May 2004, I jumped on the webbernet, like a surfer surfing real live waves, and I took a ride on the information superhighway, like driving a train on the tracks, and I put an ad on craigslist and I found, easily, Lindsay and her four month West Village sublet. I lived there 'til Krista moved out here in September.

So last week, when Lewis asked me if I knew about craigslist [it related to a story, I think, probably about legos], I was like, "Yeah, DUH! Like, I owe them my whole life."

Then I realized...fuck...I owe them my whole life!

Which made me feel like the biggest dork ever. I am, though, and I'm at peace with that.

Click on this to make it bigger (it's like The Chart, sort of, but without Alice being so cute in her little glasses):

Sunday, May 14, 2006

I'll Buy You a Hat From New Orleans, and in The Morning You Can Tell Me Your Dreams

Today, my Mom, my Aunt Connie and I* went to see my brother, Lewis Jacob Lyn Bernard [google that, bitches!!!!] graduate from Tulane, which is in the City of New Orleans, like the song "City of New Orleans." I was reminded of Hogwarts [again, projecting here, as I only read the first Harry Potter book and haven't seen any of the movies] where the students are granted a magic wand and like, flying pants or whatever, except instead of the magic wand, Lewis Jacob Lyn Bernard received a degree in a useful subject [Mechanical Engineering, which I think has something to do with Legos] and a job [again, Legos?]!

This makes Lewis more successful than most people I know, including myself. Also, Lewis and I used to make great Lego movies about people who lived underwater and/or in outer space, which was probably like, super-inspirational for him.

Speaking of super-inspirational ... not only did I get to see my favorite president, the ever-so-sexy BILL CLINTON, at the Tulane Commencement ... [you can see how inspired Connie and I are in the accompanying photographs] ...

... BUT there was a surprise visit by ELLEN!!!! I stood up to cheer like a wild maniac, and I totally thought the girl two seats down from me [suspiciously reading Rainbow High] would stand up too but she didn't. Maybe she didn't want to associate with me because, due to extreme air conditioning, I had recently added striped leggings to my stellar outfit [Lo's dress and my torn-up Chuck Taylors], which I put on under my dress during the National Anthem. Take that, you Splatter Painted Star Spangled Banner. It was HOT!

ELLEN was the most AWESOME thing to ever happen in the history of graduation ceremonies, which, as Willie said, is like being the fastest car in a New York traffic jam, but trust me it was AWESOME.

I took a lot of those photos of the stage that people take from thirty miles away where you can't see anything, but I won't post them, 'cause that'd be mean and also silly. Instead, here is a photo in front of a pretty building with my Aunt Connie, me and Lewis. Lewis and I were wearing matching shirts so Mom wouldn't lose us in a crowd.

I mean, whoops! I'm confusing yesterday with 1986-1991, when we had matching terry-cloth short-tank ensembles so Mom wouldn't lose us in a crowd.

So, it's 1:17 AM in New Orleans. Mom is sleeping, Aunt Connie is sleeping. I slept a little earlier when I was supposed to be at The Party, because I accidentally fell asleep while someone (Mom) was (sort of) watching Mad About You, which is Boring. I think I got lethargic/sleepy on the ride back to the hotel, and by "ride back" I mean "getting lost," and by "getting lost" I mean "getting lost again."

This one's for all my babies back home in the Big know how I always "ruin"/TOTALLY ROCK photos with my "goofy"/AWESOME facial expressions? Well, uh, yeah.

*I know that it's "I" and not "me" because I have a degree in English, which is useful for things like talking about yourself on the internet.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Reverse Seasonal Affective Disorder: Summertime, and the Living is Easy?

So, spring is in the air ... which means that summer is coming.

Last summer, I freaked out about my annual SAD-SS (Seasonal Affective Disorder, Summer Style), and—truth be told—Summer 2005 turned out to kinda rock ... Noah's breakfasts of Queens-procured vegetables and Goya tortillas, being rockstars speeding across the island at night-time in Matty's Jeep, or in daytime climbing from the icebox of my room to the fire escape where we'd watch the neverending street fair and he'd blow cigarette smoke ruthlessly into the humid air, high as a kite at Tara and/or Lainy's while giggles pepper the fog of window fans and sweaty clubs, mocking queries over Yogurt Bowl with Cameron and Rachel in the dark kitchen, Natalie, the only girl in the world who'd take the 6 train to 116th street at 1 A.M. just to talk after working an 80-hour week——and, our two beautiful days in the Hamptons, when I was reminded of why people like the summertime after all.

I'm hoping this summer will also defy expectation. But just to recap, these are the viruses that cause SADSS to begin with:

1. Sweat. I do that a lot. Especially while waiting for the subway, which's really smelly in the summertime, and packed with uncomfortable necktied people & unfortunately near-naked people.

2. Sticky Things e.g., watermelons, popsicles, ice cream. Esp. when combined with eating outdoors, mosquitos, or parades/street fairs/barebeques/The Puerto Rican Day Parade.

3. Slut Patrol: I get really hot in the summertime. And I don't mean Paris Hilton hot, I mean like, Dante-hot. And so I wear short skirts. Sometimes, short shorts, like the girls in the Nair ads? And I think that's okay, guy-in-the-truck/disapproving friends. So shut the fuck up. Would you rather see my inner thighs sweat? Yeah you would, but NO YOU WOULDN'T!

4. Every Summer Brings me either one step closer to ugliness or one step closer to skin cancer. I tend to chose the latter.

5. Girls sometimes wear those silly flowy hippie skirts, and boys sometimes wear cargo shorts. Both of these things make me not want to have sex with anyone ever.

Reasons this summer may rock anyhow:

1. Living in Williamsburg with Lo-La
2. Wedding Crashers w/Haviland: July in Savannah, GA.
3. I Heart Pride, big-time.
4. New Orleans this weekend.
5. Hopefully London at some point.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Meeting Shane: I Don't Have a Plan. That's the Point.

In twenty-four hours, I am going to see/meet Katherine Moenning A.K.A. SHANE in the flesh. OMG, yeah, I feel about 13. It's like that movie where that Spy Girl was 13 but also 30. I didn't see that movie though, because it looked retarded.

In 1997, Ryan Clayburn told me I'd never get laid unless I discarded my "teeny-bopper" room-decor, e.g., my Jared Leto-Claire Danes themed closet or the CK-One ads/Leonardo DiCaprio collage over my bed. I switched to faux-artsy black-and-white postcards of Certified Hip People like Jack Kerouac and James Dean, and then my room became The Love Shack.

Speaking of The Love Shack, I'm going to meet Kate tomorrow. (We're on nickname basis in my mind). But I keep thinking; despite the mini-orgasm I'll probably experience immediately by same-room-presence--what do I do with this? It's a thrill to meet an actress you worship, but it's a bizarre kind of thrill. Well-known stars have plenty of fans, so meeting you isn't necessarily at all special to them, and in this case (as in most fan-star situations), she is fully aware of the fact that most fans do not actually adore Katie herself (rotating-nickname basis), but rather they love her character Shane on The L Word. Do I tell her I "love her work"? Seriously. Do I? Do I tell her I loved her EVEN during that godawful sequence where the cast was lamely plopped into a forest set resembling the fake foliage from Splash Mountain & clad in stylish hiking gear while Boira played Ranger Rick and everyone kept seeing Dana's ghost in the waterfall?

Then there's this ...

Me: "I don't know if I want to fuck Shane necessarily. I kind of just want to be her. I don't know if we'd be that good together."
Lilly*: "Yeah, you'd totally just both try to top each other."

*changed the name to Lilly because the person who said that is actually named "Katy" and I didn't want to confuse her with my other friend Katy Moenning.

My deep throbbing connection to Shane has been nurtured by many com(pli)ments made to me about how much Shane and I have similar "looks" from time to time (our faces are nothing alike, she's much hotter, has more expensive clothing, more blazers, cuter hair, and she's a lot skinnier than me, but you know what I mean).

I guess I just kinda want to touch her and maybe breathe her air.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Rosie, Ellen, and The Well of Brokeback Loneliness: What Else Could I Say, Everyone Is Gay, What Else Could I Write?

Way back in the day, when I was a little girl growing up in the tender liberal enclave of Ann Arbor, Michigan, my little brother and I were fully dedicated to daily 4 P.M. viewings of The Rosie O'Donnell Show. That was right after school, though our viewing didn't cease come summertime, we'd obviously tape every episode. We also ate a lot of Cheez-Its. Then I grew up, Rosie left her show, and I stopped eating Cheez-Its and instead went to the gym every morning at 11 A.M to watch The View on TV.

So, just try to imagine the absolute bliss that radiated the very core of my being when I learned that....


It was super-funny when Joy Behar noted that, following this announcement at the Emmys, the camera cut straight to Ellen: "Nice how they went right to a shot of the other lesbian on daytime TV." This makes me happy because maybe there won't be any elephants in the room on "The View" [besides, of course, the deflated body of the Payless shoes lady], like there are on other daytime shows [Ellen, I love you dearly no matter what xoxoxo, but it's weird how you totally avoid the subject, though also understandable a little 'cause of what happened with your brilliant sitcom].

Not to make it sound like I spent most of the early 90s watching television...but I also LOVED Ellen's Show, originally titled These Friends of Mine and then re-titled Ellen. My best friend Alina and I did fab immitations of Ellen from the self-defense class episode, obviously one of the funniest things ever on television. I totally heart Ellen's daytime television show, and I heart her style, her girlfriend and her dancing, so my world was totally rocked when I saw that, later this month, the whole cast of The West Wing is gonna be on her show to celebrate the series finale!!

OMG I hope they hear that 1, 2 step!

Yes ... but this week of gay love doesn't end there. Today, I was on the L train (lookin' like hell, which is why I didn't dry hump her right there) with my crush-of-the-week, Kim Stolz from America's Next Top Model.
On Saturday night, I made the mistake of watching Brokeback Mountain, which I hadn't seen before. Total cry-a-thon. Afterwards, you should read The Well of Loneliness, which I finally finished yesterday. Actually I couldn't read the last two pages in their entirety, because it was too fucking depressing. I think Stephen Gordan needs to be on The View with Jack Twist.

P.S. I don't actually get television in my house, so this is going to be a bit of a problem because I can't spend all day at the gym! Or can I?

Monday, May 01, 2006

So Today I Left my Cell Phone at Home, Luckily I Hate the Phone ... or do I?

Sometimes, 'cause my mind is always a-buzzin' with important ideas, I do things like leave my cell phone at home. For example: I did this today.

I just want my texts! I know I've got some cute ones just sitting there, being funny, and I'm an entire borough away, not LOL'ing at them!

Some people liken the no-phone sensation to the feeling of having one's arm chopped off.

But....I'm not a big fan of "the phone." I've never been, really, but I also can't imagine life without it. Wait, yeah--I can. Because I used to live without cell-phones AND I've had several male friends who've been w/o cell phones at some point (Women, except for the fictional Carrie Bradshaw, ALWAYS have cell phones, cause that's how they can get mad at men for not calling them). I have cell-less pals because I like cowboys and poor people.

People who know me know that I'm not so good with the phone. My little brother and I are both bad on the phone, so we generally don't speak that often. It's hard for me to get along with people who refuse to text, like Noah did last summer. But then Matty told him; "Noah, if you want to talk to Marie, you gotta play by her rules." I like to write words. Like I'm doing now. Sometimes a verbal chat is in order, and I've had many lovely phone conversations. Jeremiah's insistence on texting everything, including a fight, once, was a bit tedious and I'd often beg him to let me call him, which is out of character.

I can't hear anything, to begin with, especially in New York, where people like to walk around and get all breathy in their phones while trucks drive by with their loud noises -- AND also usually trucks are ALSO driving by ME, so that's TRUCKS on BOTH ENDS -- or like, today, I was blindsided by a dozen or more hip-height schoolchildren stuffing their faces with french fries, yabbering in some incomprehensible children-language and taking up massive amounts of space. Space in New York is already limited; we're doing our best to avoid stepping on the blankets laid out with bent-spine paperbacks, broken mugs, travel-sized shampoos, incense, old magazines, and live children make this even worse, so basically, it's really hard to understand anything anyone is ever saying.

Also when voice mails pile up, I get all this anxiety and stop listening to them. Unless you leave me funny voice mails. Then I save them and re-listen a million times, and also LOL. You people know who you are with the funny voice mails!!

I spent 95% of my VM-listening moments trying to figure out if it's my reception at that moment or their reception WHILE THEY LEFT IT that make their words so impossible to decipher.

That's why I love texting! Because there's the info--right there--accessible, easily referenced, all that. You can text anywhere, anytime, and no one knows what you're doing! You can text and say you're somewhere, but you're really somewhere else! You can text important information like addresses, times, and grocery lists! You can text all about what you'd like to do to me while I'm in fuzzy handcuffs on all fours! (Just kidding on that last one!) You can text in a quiet room, you can text at the gym, it's really just terrific, if it wasn't for the 160 character limit. (Krista doesn't have this on her phone, so she writes long messages that then assault my phone and transform it into R2-D2 on crack.)

I prefer to think of cellphones as fancy walkie-talkies, which are good for things like: "Um, I'm upstairs by the shoes? Are you still trying shit on?" or "Where the fuck are you, bitch?" or "Um, is it 127 85th street or 721?" or you know, like "Is your refrigerator running?" which I still think is super funny.

Anyhow, the point is: I try to make it known that I don't always answer my phone, because I usually don't, and it's never personal to the caller. I'm also not a big fan of people getting legitimatly upset at me for not picking up my phone in general (as opposed to when there's a specific reason I should pick up). Their ire may be justified ... or not. I try to only answer when I can give people my whole attention. Also, my arm gets tired.

It's nice to leave my phone at home and go out alone, though there's always this nagging anxiety that I can't shake, which is when I try to close my eyes and remember that time before cellphones, and how much anxiety I had then about calls from girls/boys I had crushes on that I was possibly missing by being at Hebrew School instead of at home.

However, my experience in befriending or dating people w/o cell phones I've learned of certain advantages; you know they can't really be late or cancel plans, 'cause it's difficult to let you know if they do (there's often home phones/dorm phones/work phones, but that's hard when you're out all day ... when Matty had no electricity or money, he had to call from pay phones (when he could afford them), which are super fun when you get all these random numbers on your caller ID, like when Paul the alcoholic was stalking me). Basically, you're forced to make plans of when and where you'll meet up with someone, rather than that fun new thing we do when we say "I'll call you" and then you can totally just not.

So yeah, then why....Why do I feel so amputated today?. It seems wrong 'cause for a lot of the weekend I was theorizing possible ways to get away and write somewhere w/o the distractions of modern life; mobiles, electricity, running watter. Except for my laptop and running water, I need those things. I don't need light because I'm a vampire.

The real problem with leaving one's phone at home in NYC is that people don't know you did it, and they're already cursing you for not picking up. Like, what if my Mom is calling? I'd feel bad for not picking up.

I wish there was a voice mail that KNEW when a phone had been left at home, and the voice mail would say; "Hi, remember before you had cell phones? Well, today is kinda like that."

Update 5/2/2006: My Mom totally called!