I enjoy watching TV, reading, being a bitch, and baked goods, sometimes all at the same time.

On That Ice Cream Truck Jingle Is Really A Minstrel Song From 1916

This is the most bourgeois comment I'll post today, but I recently bought a Breville ice cream maker and it has 3 options for a song to play when the ice cream is done: A, Turkey in the Straw, B. The Entertainer, or C. Camptown Races. Camptown Races is a minstrel entertainer song as well, guys. I gotta figure out how to just make it beep once or something, because it makes me and everyone else uncomfortable. All I wanted was some Nutella gelato, and now I have to picture the grinning racist face of Al Jolson.

Posted on May 12, 2014 at 12:24 pm 1

On A Curated Selection of Wonderfully Gruesome Sentences from Wikipedia

These are all delightful. May I also suggest:

Jimmy Lee Gray: "At the time of Gray's execution, the gas chamber used in Mississippi had a vertical iron bar directly behind the inmate's chair."

Welsh Corgi: "There has recently been a concern regarding the population size of the Welsh Corgi."

Marburg Virus Disease: "There is currently no effective marburgvirus-specific therapy for MVD."

Posted on April 21, 2014 at 1:08 pm 0

On When You're Alone and Life Is Making You Lonely

I live in a college res hall and I watched it last night and monopolized the tv lounge for two hours with PBS, just like I do whenever there's a decent American Masters. I'm so good.

Posted on January 9, 2012 at 5:38 pm 1

On Our Bella, Ourselves

I thought this article was great and much more thought-out than a lot of analyses of Twilight. And I have been waiting for someone to phrase that thought about Juno and Easy A!

One thing I see in both this article and Twilight is this weird link we make between fertility/an easy childbirth and emotional strength/capability. I work as a doula sometimes and when natural childbirths don't happen, sometimes it's like the mom's pride was hurt, or like some kind of test was failed. When it does, it's this huge accomplishment.

And it's not like that. Sometimes our bodies betray us and disobey us and ultimately, no matter what, they WILL age and fail regardless of the manner in which they have reproduced. Natural childbirth is a common denominator of all human experience, even if it is countercultural in 2011 North America. It is possibly the least unusual thing you can do, especially next to dying a virgin or giving birth in hospital machinery. If you want to have a grand creative act, write a novel or design an experiment or build a bridge.

Reproduction is not a creative act: not for real women and not for Bella. It is uncontrollable and a process of its own. In Twilight, Bella's journey into maternity and beyond (and marriage) happens before the reader has even fully accustomed to the adulthood implied by her marriage and the forming of her own family. She gets the best of both (birth?) worlds: to become a mother and stay a teenager, to take part in a dangerous relationship and to be shielded from the world. It's not so much a coming-of-age story as a story of an adolescence prolonged beyond all previous limits, as Bella's bodily ignorance as she becomes a mother is a Gothic Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret combined with the old-as-time theme of women being controlled by the wild rampages of their uterus and their emotions.

Posted on November 16, 2011 at 5:27 pm 6

On What Old Book Do I Read If … ?

Just reading this thread made me open up about sixteen Amazon tabs. I would like to second Wilkie Collins: The Woman In White is definitely one of my FAVORITE BOOKS EVER. Although I felt The Moonstone was too bathetic and Armadale is just drugged out.

No one has mentioned Elizabeth Gaskell, I think...North & South fits the bill for caller #2 (Also, the BBC version is streaming on Netflix). It's sort of like a mashup of all Victorian Novel Themes: the young virtuous woman struggling under the demands of family, the challenges of industrialization, a novel of the abstraction of faith, a story of generational conflict, a treatise on gender, and a sort of Gothic Darcy/Bennett happening. This is all very pretentious but you should read this!

Also there is a book I love no one seems to talk about: it is 'Don't Die Before You're Dead' by Yevgeny Yevtushenko. It's a novel about the USSR and the way people lived in it, written by someone who is clearly a poet. Just a thought.

Thanks, Hairpin, for the reading suggestions--I want to be BEST FRIENDS (like Wodehouse-caliber) with everyone.

Posted on November 16, 2011 at 3:59 pm 0

On Women Struggling to Drink Water

I was going to type a comment but then I tried to drink some water and I missed, so it got all over my computer. Sorry.

Posted on November 3, 2011 at 4:25 pm 8

On Scandals of Classic Hollywood: Marlon Brando's Dirty Dungarees

I love this series! And also Brando!

I think he was the inspiration for Paul Newman's persona in Hud.

Posted on July 7, 2011 at 6:19 pm 0

On Chill Out, Eat Key Lime Pie

I have this baking in my oven right now, and am super excited, even though I burnt myself like an idiot. Thanks to whoever suggested raspberries (@srs) I am definitely going to do that when it is chilled! My sister's English friend is coming over to stay with us tonight so I thought it would be nice for her to have some key lime pie as an American specialty to try.

Posted on June 20, 2011 at 2:47 pm 0

On Beauty Q&A: Mascara Dots, Cheap Makeup, and Chapped Lips

Dude, just use actual petroleum-jelly vaseline to disgustingly coat your mouth at night. Gross, admittedly, but it works?

Also, even though everyone and their grandmother simply looooves to recommend it, the pink and green mascara is shit. Go for the Covergirl Great Volume in the orange, shapely tube.

Posted on June 18, 2011 at 1:33 pm 0

On Make Your Own Semi-Functional Hairstyling Products

Has anyone tried those Lush hair styling products? I want to believe they work...

Posted on May 27, 2011 at 9:31 pm 0