Throwback Thursday: Cartwheels

photo 1This photo is not just exhibit A that my head has always been roughly the size of a regulation 10 pin bowling ball (I had to specify because as a New Englander, candle pin is our bowling method of choice, and my head hasn’t been that size ball since the beginning of my mother’s second trimester). This 3rd grade dance recital picture is also a painful reminder of the childhood trauma that resulted from not having the ability to do a cartwheel. Did you think that I was about to tell you my dance teacher molested me?

No, no, just some upper-middle class problems where my parents could afford to send me to weekly dance classes that were segregated by which girls could or could not do cartwheels. So, I wasn’t abused, but it felt kinda like, a race thing, almost.

No? Well, not being able to do a cartwheel was embarrassing. And look how big my head was! I couldn’t catch a break after I was born into a stable family in a first world nation! For one, while the other girls were doing a step-ball-change, sashay, sashay, cartwheel, pose! I was doing a sashay, sashay, summersault, slowly get up, pose a half-count late!

Or the time my older cousin tried to teach me how to do a cartwheel at my brother’s baseball game and all I accomplished was throwing up a Dole popsicle and spaghetti.

The worst cartwheel experience of all was when I was in middle school and wanted to be a cheerleader. During the first practice leading up to try-outs we were separated into groups: girls who did back hand springs, girls who did cartwheels, and girls they would humor for two hours. There ended my cheerleading career.

I don’t know what it is about cartwheels that always eluded me. I think it was a combination of my lack of upper body strength and my fear of my feet being where my head should be. It’s just amazing what a huge stress cartwheels used to be for me. It’s like algebra (to theatre majors), except with cartwheels no one ever lets you know that you  practically never need them in adulthood. I guess people just assume you know that.

Assuming makes an ass out of you and me because I was horrified that this was going to be my life forever.

Look! This is me as a Rorschach test!

photo 2

5 Things We Can Learn From: Bethenny Frankel

I’ve been a fan of Bethenny Frankel’s since the beginning of Real Housewives of New York City. She was easily my favorite Housewife because unlike the others, she hit that sweet spot of self-awareness for a reality star: just enough where she could have a sense of humor about herself and the show, but not enough where she was above acting like a lunatic at a Creaky Joints charity event.

I think Bethenny lost me sometime during Bethenny Ever After when she started crying in her closet next to Cookie and Ziplock bags of lingerie. Now that she’s getting a divorce from Jason Hoppy, I can only imagine what kind of mess her show would be if she did another season. Not that I wouldn’t have a DVR season pass for Bethenny Getting Her Groove Back With the Help of Hoda Kotb. I would enjoy it for what it would be: an hour long Skinnygirl QVC show with interspersing segments of Bethenny slirping oysters talking about how great casual sex is after 40, while Hoda giggles in embarrassed approval.

"Have you met my friend, Bethenny? She tells it like it is!!!"

“Have you met my friend, Bethenny? She tells it like it is!!!”

Yet, despite the wreck she is, I still think there’s a lot we can learn from Bethenny:

1. You won’t meet the person you’ll spend the rest of your life with at a club, which is how Bethenny and Jason met. If you do meet a hot, single, 40 year-old man while strutting past his bottle service table, it doesn’t mean your vision board is finally working. You’ve just found A 40 YEAR-OLD MAN STILL GETTING BOTTLE SERVICE.

1356295864_bethenny-frankel-main2. If you meet a 40 year-old man at a club and his first words to you are, “are you going to get that stick out of your ass” don’t marry that man! He’s probably going to have issues with non-traditional gender roles!!! I would also argue that if you met a man while you were both volunteering at a children’s hospital, and “are you going to get that stick out of your ass” was the first thing he said to you, it still wouldn’t be a great idea to marry him. He sounds very rude.

3. Crying in a bathroom during your birthday party because you “don’t want all the attention” while you’re miked up for your reality show makes you appear insane. 

bethenny-ever-after-finale-video-bryn4. If you insist on doing the above, do not write a self-help book about overcoming your screwed up childhood. If you’re 40 and still crying in bathrooms at your birthday party, maybe it’s time to let go of the idea that you’re ever going to “overcome” your childhood. Just be proud that you never went through a meth phase in your 20′s.

5. Karma is real, and she will cut you. Look, I love a nice watered down margarita with half the calories and alcohol, and I thank Bethenny for that. However, you can’t be telling ladies they should fill up on salad before Christmas dinner and think you’re going to get away with it. On her show, Bethenny self-righteously scooped out the meat of a few too many bagels for her not to be stricken with a divorce that she would have to eat her way through like a normal woman.

Instagram Caption: "This is my life right now"

Instagram Caption: “This is my life right now”

Bethenny, you did this to yourself. Don’t you tell me you only had a bite of each and threw out the rest. Just let it go.

Oscar Predictions From Someone Who Has Only Seen “Argo”

Performance by an actor in a leading role:
Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook 
Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Hugh Jackman, Les Misérables
Joaquin Phoenix, The Master
Denzel Washington, Flight

bradley-cooper-sexiest-man-alive

I hope Bradley wins because I still feel bad for him that everyone got so mad that he was People’s Sexiest Man of the Year instead of Ryan Gosling in 2011. Do I think it was an oversight on People’s part? Sure. Is that Bradley’s fault? Absolutely not. Probably ugly people were complaining all over Twitter saying Bradley wasn’t sexy enough, which I think is just rude and untrue. Who amongst us non-famous cretins would kick him out of bed for eating crackers? I can’t even say with certainty that I’d kick him out of bed for pooping in it. He is that sexy. Oscar for Bradley!

Performance by an actor in a supporting role:
Alan Arkin, Argo
Robert De Niro, Silver Linings Playbook 
Philip Seymour Hoffman, The Master 
Tommy Lee Jones, Lincoln
Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained

I haven’t even seen the trailer for The Master, but I loved Philip Seymour Hoffman in Pirate Radio. 

Performance by an actress in a leading role:
Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty
Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
Emmanuelle Riva, Amour
Quvenzhané Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild
Naomi Watts, The Impossible

Zero-dark-thirtyI pick Jessica because she has red hair and because it looks like her character is like a Carrie Mathison with better common sense decision making skills.

Performance by an actress in a supporting role:
Amy Adams, The Master
Sally Field, Lincoln
Anne Hathaway, Les Misérables
Helen Hunt, The Sessions
Jacki Weaver, Silver Linings Playbook

I chose Jacki Weaver by process of elimination because I don’t actually have any idea who she is, and I have no time to Google such nonsense. “No” to Sally Field because it freaks me out that she has always looked exactly the same since she was on Gidget. This is not a compliment to how well she is aging, but an insult to her former self that she has always looked like a 60 year-old woman without wrinkles. “No” to Amy Adams because I think her strawberry blonde hair is very non-committal. “No” to Helen Hunt because I don’t like that her and Paul Reiser divorced at the end of Mad About You. A “No” to Anne Hathaway because her acceptance speeches are like the open auditions week on American Idol where I have to constantly look down at my phone and say “Ahhhh, I can’t take it” over and over until it stops. So, congrats, Jacki.

Best animated feature film of the year:
Mark Andrews and Brenda Chapman, Brave 
Tim Burton, Frankenweenie
Sam Fell and Chris Butler, ParaNorman
Peter Lord, The Pirates! Band of Misfits
Rich Moore, Wreck-It Ralph

Brave for the red head girl and because I think Tim Burton gets away with too much.

Achievement in directing:
Michael Haneke, Amour
Benh Zeitlin, Beasts of the Southern Wild
Ang Lee, Life of Pi
Steven Spielberg, Lincoln
David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook

ARGO

Nobody. Ben Affleck 4ever!

Best documentary feature:
5 Broken Cameras
The Gatekeepers
How to Survive a Plague
The Invisible War
Searching for Sugar Man

Searching for Sugar Man because it’s about one of Honey Boo Boo’s family members, right? Sounds fun.

Best motion picture of the year: 
Amour
Argo
Beasts of the Southern Wild
Django Unchained
Les Misérables
Life of Pi
Lincoln
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

Ar-go Fuck Yourself! Right?! I chose this as best picture because 1. It is the only movie I have seen of the 10, 2. Ben Affleck 4ever, 3. I liked it even though the last 15 minutes gave me so much anxiety that I started Googling on my phone “how does Argo end?”

Manti Te’o: Just a Kid Who Never Saw “Cruel Intentions”?

Teo

Like many others who have heard about Notre Dame football player, Manti Te’o and his fake dead girlfriend, I’m struggling with whether or not I believe that Manti was tricked or in on the whole charahhhd. This kid is either the saddest little Mormon since Julie from Real World: New Orleans or a sociopath. Though, there is a third option that I’m not sure anyone else has thought of:

In this scenario, he’s still pathetic, but instead of falling in love with a girl on twitter, he makes up a girlfriend so he has an excuse as to why he can’t date rape freshmen with the rest of his teammates on Friday nights. Eventually, the other boys get suspicious.

“Manti, why doesn’t Lennay ever come visit you? Is she coming to the big game today?”

“Uh… she can’t…”

“Again?! I’m starting to think that you don’t really have a girlfriend.”

“No, I have a girlfriend! She just can’t come because she’s… dead.”

“She’s dead? Why didn’t you tell us?”

“Well… she only died like… 12 hours ago…”

“Wait, didn’t your grandmother die yesterday, too?”

“It’s been a real humdinger of a week.”

“I’m so sorry, man. How did Lennay die?” Manti looks around nervously and catches a glimpse of fellow teammate, Luke, at his locker.

“Luke….kemia.”

END SCENE

If this was the case, I almost feel some sympathy for the guy. He probably never thought it would go this far, and people probably lie about having significant others all the time. Do you remember Boyfriend in a Box?

bfbox

They used to sell them at Claire’s back when that store was a 90′s Spice Girl fantasia full of hair mascara and magnetic earrings. They were these little kits filled with wallet sized pictures of a cute boy, a couple notes from him, and a little backstory. Apparently, they sold pretty well, but some pictures and a note isn’t enough to keep a lie like that going. And your “girlfriend” having a Twitter account doesn’t prove she’s real either.

Regardless of whether this guy was in on the hoax or not, the real idiots here are the journalists.

Did this story not sound at all strange to any of them? A young 22 year-old is dying, and she tells the love of her life not to attend her funeral? Right there, someone should have realized that something was off. I don’t know any young woman that would tell her boyfriend to play football instead of attending her funeral. That’s something your dying, selfless mother tells you to do. Any self-respecting woman wants her boyfriend at that funeral, front and center, eulogizing to all your family, friends, and acquaintances that he may never love again. That is the fantasy. It does not take Veronica Mars to figure that one out.

manti-teo-girlfriend-screenshot-1

And yet, as careless as those journalists were, there is no one as stupid as the Notre Dame football coaches. Stupid, might not be right. What’s the word for awful, a-moral, good ole’ boys who put football before the safety of young women? It’s the antonym of “Coach Taylor”. Idk, lemme know if you think of it. I’ll just call them jerks for now.

Those jerks are standing behind Manti (fine), but what chaps my ass is that they are calling him a “victim”.

A victim of whom? His parents for never letting him watch Cruel Intentions? Obviously, they didn’t teach him that not everyone is a Mormon, Sleepy Time tea drinker who wouldn’t think to lie and manipulate another one of God’s creatures just for fun. Or perhaps he’s the victim of a negligent teenage babysitter that let him roll off the couch as an infant because only a severe childhood head trauma could explain this level of naïveté. This kid is just stupid or maybe a liar.

If you want to talk about a real victim, Lizzy Seeberg was an actual living girl who is now dead. 

elizabeth-seeberg

When she was allegedly sexually assaulted by a Notre Dame football player, nobody called her a victim or even investigated her claim until 15 days after she made the report or 5 days after she killed herself. Another young woman was attacked by a Notre Dame football player but never reported it because some players harassed her until she was too afraid to come forward. When you think about what his teammates have probably done, Manti doesn’t seem so bad, after all. So he probably pretended to have a girlfriend.  Who hasn’t lied at a family party that you’re “seeing someone special” when in reality you went on one blind date 6 weeks ago and haven’t heard from them since?

Life From an Easy Chair

It’s basically my policy that I don’t start anything new until Monday. The New Year unfortunately fell on a Tuesday, and I actually don’t start any sort of New Year’s resolution until January 2nd because why would you try to lose weight and be a better person on what is technically considered a holiday?

I decided to begin my resolutions the Monday after New Year’s Day. The same two resolutions I have every year, which is: stop eating like a trash compactor and stop procrastinating. It’s so hard to do either of those things because they’re in my blood like diabeetus. Luckily, two of my favorite hobbies are starvation juice cleanses and personal development, so I give it a good try for a couple weeks a few times a year, which is enough for me.

I was ready to go this past Monday, but then I got a sore throat (!!!). I’ve also been on crutches for the last 5 weeks, so I just took this as an excuse to go into a surprisingly satisfying wallowing depression that includes involuntary heavy sighs and sleeping 14 hours a day.

fce773d44e0511e2bf2722000a1fbc66_7

The other 9 hours and 45 minutes are spent in a reclining chair in my living room, and the remaining 15 minutes are spent in the bathroom or in transit to the bathroom. It’s so hard to think of things to blog about when you have minimal human interaction, but the plus side is that I’m now starting to believe I know the celebrities I follow on Twitter personally. It’s like my recliner is my island and celebrities are my Wilson and I am Tom Hanks because I’m extremely like-able and my personal hygiene has completely deteriorated. Just kidding, some say I’m not that like-able.

Okay, that was enough productivity for one day, back to my bell jar, bye.

Happy Weekend

One of my mom’s co-workers went to Chicago for New Year’s or something and brought me back some Nuts on Clark Chicago Mix popcorn. The Chicago mix (caramel and cheese popcorn) from either Nuts on Clark, Garret’s Popcorn, or a 6 month old bag from the shelf of a CVS in Illinois is one of my top 5 favorite foods. You just can’t find this stuff in New England, and it’s like crack in the sense that it’s so addictive, but also not like crack in the sense that it’s not legitimately addictive or has the capability to ruin your life.

photo

When I went to Vegas last year, we had a layover in Chicago. I think we had about 20 minutes to get to our next gate, and I decided it was worth the risk to find the Garret’s popcorn kiosk that I knew existed in the airport somewhere. You’ve never seen anything more an endearing than my friend with a fresh Starbucks in her hand and me with my entire arm in a bag of popcorn while we waltzed on the completely full and seated plane like, “hey, guys, we can go now! Vegas, riiight?!” as we started pouring Bailey’s nips in our coffee before we managed to get our seatbelt on. You should have seen how cute I was, like, 10 seconds before when I couldn’t find my boarding pass and had to dump the contents of my orange and pink leopard print Betsey Johnson carry on. Don’t worry, I found it- just in the front pocket hiding behind some old Forever 21 receipts! Hollaaaa! Vegaaaas!

Anyway, it’s the freakin’ weekend and I’m about to go buck wild on some $3 happy hour nachos. Hope you are doing something equally glamorous. You’re only in your 20′s for 10 years, after all.

5 “Nice Guy” Myths

Addendum: When I say “Nice Guy,” I don’t mean actually nice, kind men. I’m talking about jerks in sheep’s clothing. The Nice Guy I’m referring to is the kind of guy who, somewhere along the way, was taught that if he was polite to a woman or listened to her while she talked pilates class drama that she owed him something. An example would be when  you’re on a date with a guy, and he’s very polite and gentlemanly and insists on paying the bill. Then, when you don’t go home with him he gets angry or annoyed or calls you a tease. “But I’m being NICE and you stupid girls always talk about how you all want a NICE guy.” Which then usually prompts these guys to think, “well, girls only date assholes and if you’re too nice to them then they just want to be your friend,” never stopping to think that being polite (particularly, when you’re doing it for disingenuous reasons) isn’t the same as being a good person. 

Before we get to the hard hitting facts portion of this blog, I’d like to show you the source material for today’s post: The Nice Guys of OKCupid. A slightly controversial tumblr about men on the dating site who call themselves “nice guys,” yet also feel like ladies should be “obligated” to shave their legs, while they let their jazz dots and chest hair roam free. Here’s a nice little write-up on the site.

tumblr_mfuocnOU9m1s0cjm8o1_500

Example

This new tumblr has inspired me to dispel some myths so we can educate these “Nice Guys” (who are actually just jerks that think opening your car door is the fastest way to open the door to your heart. Just kidding. Your vagina).

MYTH: Nice Guys finish last.

FACT: Tom Hanks seems very agreeable, and one might say that he has done well or finished first in both career and romance (Rita Wilson, you are aging like wine). This saying just makes no sense at all. Perhaps it is a very effective way to convince yourself that nothing is wrong with you, only with the women who choose not to date you. The saying “nice guys finish last” seems like the cousin to the phrase “I’m too dedicated” in response to the question at a job interview, “what’s your worst quality?” You do have a worst quality and it is not that you open doors and don’t back hand me for getting sassy with you.

MYTH: “I’m so nice that I keep getting put in the ‘friendzone.’” 

just-friends

FACT: There is no such thing as a friendzone. The friend in question just doesn’t find you attractive. Remember in “Just Friends” when the women didn’t want to date fat Ryan Reynolds even though she liked his personality? At that point he was no where near attractive enough for her. She was so hot that she was making like a Rockford Peach. Girl was in a League. Of. Her. Own. Then when Ryan gets hot, suddenly, “ruining their friendship” isn’t such a big deal anymore. Do you really think that we would choose not to date a good guy that we found attractive and we knew liked us because of some weird friending policy that we instated at our last “Ladies Trying to Ruin the Lives of Men” meeting that all women of child bearing years are obligated to attend?

MYTH: Women only date assholes.

FACT: Well, Rihanna dates an asshole. Your point checks out so far…

BUT, this one time in college I dumped a guy because he was an asshole. Sorry! Foiled again, Nice Guy!

MYTH: If I’m NICE to a women then she is obligated to date me or give me her panties to show my friends in the bathroom at prom (I’M not saying “panties;” I’m using Nice Guy vernacular). 

16-candles-panties

FACT: Just because you displayed some basic human civility doesn’t mean anyone has to throw you a boobie parade.

MYTH: This isn’t true! You’re an uptight, feminazi bitch, Dara!

FACT: Heeeyyyy! Calling someone a bitch isn’t very Nice Guy of you! And I am not uptight, you should see me after I’ve had a mojito.

The Fictional Carrie Scale of Poor Decision Making Skills

The fictional Carries of film and television have a long and storied history of using questionable judgement. Because their life choices are so varied in their levels of stupidity, Carries are the perfect subject for a scale that can measure the poor decision making skills of others.

carriescale

Homeland Spoiler Alerts Ahead:  I’m being really nice letting you know because at this point you should have stopped procrastinating and finished the second season. You can’t just keep backlogging episodes while we all walk on eggshells. Next time you get no warning. Put aside a wine and snuggle weekend and just finish that shit! 

0-2, or Carrie Heffernan: Carrie of King of Queens is a hottie whose status is confirmed by another hottie, Zack Morris. Despite spending a magical summer with him at Malibu Sands Beach Club, she somehow ends up with a fat UPS worker. Though she is way out of her husband’s league, he does put up with her father that lives with them and almost ruins their lives every 22 minutes, something Zack probably wouldn’t deal with. Overall, not such a terrible decision, depending on your feelings for Kevin James.

3-5, or Carrie White: Carrie in Carrie is only a 3-5 because she couldn’t really help going all telekinesis-y, and it was the other kids’ faults for the pig’s blood. The bad decision was not listening to her mother that everyone was going to laugh at her if she went to prom. However crazy your mom might be, she’s usually right about that stuff. Know when to take good advice.

6-8, or Carrie Bradshaw: It is my opinion that the difference between being a girl and being a woman is whether or not you believe that Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City is an acceptable role model. How many Style Network marathons did it take for you to realize she’s a needy, selfish woman? Putting aside whether or not she should have married Aidan, the dude offered to refinish her floors foh’ FREE, and after only a couple hours with the noise of the sander, she gives him some attitude, goes to a hotel and CHEATS on him! You did not have to do him like that, Carrie. You could have just written at Starbucks like the rest of us. That is some above average poor decision making.

9-10, or Carrie Mathison: For all the terrible, unavailable men Carrie Bradshaw dated, she never came close to dating the multi-hyphenate of awful that is Brody, the ginger-husband-father-terrorist that Carrie Mathison of Homeland fell in love with. I mean, you risk your life and career for this dude, and when you almost say you love him, he tells you “careful”?! Does this guy know he’s a terrorist?! AND A GINGER? Not only are you in love with a married, suicide vest wearing red head, you like him more than he likes you. If you’ve hit this red zone you should seek help immediately because you are now way beyond dating politicians with golden shower fetishes, and we need to adjust your medication before you start having jazz fits.