My parents’ first house in Atlanta, 1975 or 1976
Needless to say, mom and dad didn’t have kids yet.
Atlanta, at home after my brother’s McDonald’s birthday party, November 1984
I don’t even know what to say.
If it seems like a random time to be posting things about Sarah Palin, it is. I was just reminded of this video by a post on Alex Ross‘ blog and feel compelled to share it, because it is the best election-related thing of all time, ever. It’s certainly the most entertaining way to make sense of Sarah Palin’s incoherent ramblings:
But wait — there’s more! Seeing that video again reminded me of another Sarah Palin song, this one by household favorite Josh Ritter. I heard it for the first time at his Atlanta show last November, and, conveniently, some dude in the audience recorded and posted it on YouTube. It’s a clever little ditty:
Last but not least, to bring things up to the current election cycle, a tumblr called Bad Lip Reading is worth checking out. Herman Cain’s is probably the best:
I just want to note that the weather this week — uncharacteristically warm and polleny (and lovely, it must be said) for this time of year, even in Atlanta — is pretty much exactly the same as it was in May of 2010 around my wedding. Here’s now, March 2012:
And here’s two years ago-ish, May 2010:
That is so noots! If we’re in May now, weatherwise, then what the hell is actual May going to feel like? Nevermind July or August…
Over the weekend I attended my first beauty pageant ever at the university where I work. Yes, my place of employ has its very own pageant that feeds into Miss Georgia, which feeds into Miss America! My coworker and I attended under the guise of providing social media content for the students, but we were actually pretty excited to go. (Plus, we got in for free.)
Overall it was an entertaining evening. Swimsuits were so-so, if a bit awkward; evening gowns were fine; onstage questions were inane and answered with basically one sentence each; and the TALENT — my goodness was it grim. “Monologue” was a surprisingly prevalent talent: some were historical, some were original, many were depressing and one was called “Abortion Cycle 1.” Yippee, hooray! I thought I might die of vicarious embarrassment throughout, a feeling that morphed into to straight-up pain as we neared the last of the contestants. One of the instrumental performances was just — I honestly can’t remember the last time I encountered anyone with such a bad ear. If they hadn’t announced what song she was playing, I never would have figured it out.
Apparently, though, they saved the best for last. The final contestant’s talent was listed as dance, but in reality it was AERIAL SILKS. No shit! At this point basically all she’d need to do to take the talent competition was climb up on those things. She had a short routine — 90 seconds is all the time they have — but it gave her enough time to do some impressive splits and twists.
I mean REALLY. How could that not win? This girl also swept the preliminary awards for swimsuit and evening wear, so it was pretty obvious what the outcome would be:
She’ll go on to the state pageant in a few months, and then who knows — maybe her aerial silks routine will carry her through that competition as well. As for me and my coworker, we’re already looking forward to next year’s pageant!
Pageant watching is a favorite pastime of the ladies in my immediate family, so we were all excited for the Miss America pageant, which took place this past Saturday night. My dad has even been sucked in over the years, so much so that when I call mom over commercial breaks to talk catty about the contestants he picks up on another phone and chimes in. I haven’t yet convinced Jon that watching these events is fun (though he did come to a Miss America party I hosted in grad school before we got together), but I’ll wear him down eventually.
Note to Miss Wisconsin: Waterproof mascara is great for all kinds of emotional occasions, not just weddings or funerals! (source)
For years I joked that I was going to sign up for the pageant at the North Georgia State Fair ($75 for day-of registration!), but I never followed through. There’s no way my prom or recital dresses would have held a candle to those of the serious pageant girls, so I was going to slay the competition with an impassioned performance of Memory from Cats — only the funniest, most overwrought and pageant-tastic showtune ever. (Never mind that there is no talent portion in the North Georgia State Fair pageant.) On My Own, immortalized by Katie Holmes, is a close second.
The talent competition is far and away the best part of Miss America — and by best, I mean most painful to watch. This year’s display held no shortage of cringe-inducing moments, including but not limited to butchery of opera, ballet en pointe, “classical” piano and even Josh Groban schlock. Miss Oklahoma’s Irish step dance routine was a breath of fresh air and a reminder that some of these girls are legitimately very talented. (Riverdance for the win! Or, you know, first runner-up. Doh.)
The height of hilarity this year was without a doubt Miss Tennessee. Not only did she sing Memory, a throwback cliche from the pageants of my childhood, SHE SANG IT IN ITALIAN. Lipstick on a pig, much? I’m quite certain we all know this song is normally in English and is from Cats, not some highfalutin’ opera. There are so many things wrong with this I don’t even know where to begin.
With that, please watch this deeply befuddling performance. She’s up first. (After that, read this preview and bemoan the fact that Hawaii didn’t make the cut.)
Look what those clever Germans have come up with now:
Edible spray paint! Hamburg’s Deli Garage Food Cooperative will hook you up for € 24,80 per 100-ml can of gold, silver, red or blue. Here’s the product description from the English-language side of the Deli Garage website:
Fine silver cutlery, gold-plated cups – there are some things in life you just can’t see enough of. As of now, the same applies to a good steak. With Food Finish, the most stylish way to refine your culinary creations. Food Finish is as easy to use as the result is beautiful: off with the lid and on with the spray. Ready! Food Finish chrome-plates and gold-coats everything and anything in the kitchen that fits under its spray nozzle. It is completely harmless and tasteless to eat.
(photos from www.the-deli-garage.com)
The blog post that led me to this discovery (sent to me by Abby) shows more photos of everyday foods that have been Esslack-ed. Apples look pretty; a muffin looks terrifying; tomatoes look freaky; and a half-chromed pretzel just makes me sad. It also makes me wonder… does this stuff come off on your hands and lips when you eat it? What would the aftermath of an Esslack dinner party look like?
Kellett Theatre green room, Atlanta, Georgia, Fall 2000
While I’m on the topic of Oktoberfest, I thought I’d pull out this beaut from my senior year of high school, since my buddies and I are all wearing dirndl-ish things. Ah, the joys of rental costumes! Actually, as I recall, we were always quite excited for costume-delivery day — except for the time we did The Sound of Music; nuns’ habits are not so thrilling. These were our getups for Brigadoon. This is totally what people in magical disappearing Scottish villages wore, right?
So, the skirt-and-dirndly-vest combos were amusing and all, but the best part was that we got to wear wigs, because the four of us had hair that was deemed too short for, I dunno, 19th-century Scotland. Clearly, wigs were a necessity. We actually named them all, though at the moment I can only remember that mine was called Swiss Miss, for obvious reasons, and Abby’s (far right) was Fancy Free, a name always accompanied by a lusty whinny. We decided that Tricia’s (the side braid situation) was totally ’80s, and Katharine’s (left) was just green.
Some of my coworkers were standing out in the hall earlier today when Steven observed that Matt had gotten a haircut. “Flowbee?” he joked, and the other three people laughed. “Wait, what’s a Flowbee?” I asked, already knowing what the answer would be. “You mean, like, a real-life Suck Kut?” (That’s the best link I could find for reference — the only YouTube clip was in French. Alright!)
Y’all — HOW is it possible I didn’t know this existed? It’s obvious that the Suck Kut was a riff on the Flowbee, but I guess my 8-year-old self thought that this totally amazing excellent discovery from Wayne’s World was too ridiculous to be real, and I never thought to question it later on. I consider myself a pretty good authority on all things Wayne and Garth, so I was shocked to learn I had missed something like this — an actual Suck Kut! — that was common knowledge among my coworkers. Turns out there’s a RoboCut too, and hundreds of Flowbee videos on YouTube. People really use these things? Get right outta town!