There’s a good chance you’ve been on the receiving end of one of my enthusiastic, yet earnest pitches for whatever has most recently caught my fancy. I figure I was going to write about it all eventually, so I’d put it together in one convenient index, forcing me to find new stuff to write about later. You’ll see it’s broken down into three of my favorite areas of interest, Media & Books, Food & Beverage, Entertainment. For fun, give yourself four points for every one that I’ve tried to talk you into, or if you’ve been a good sport and tolerated one of the related Facebook posts.
BOOKS & MEDIA
Donald Miller had been on the New York Times best seller list for a bazillion weeks before I read Blue Like Jazz. But you’d have thought I was his agent. I was reading it in the front seat of the car in the church parking lot. (It’s a long story, I don’t usually just sit out there.) Some people I knew walked by and I stuck my head out the window to yell at them, “I’m reading Blue Like Jazz – have you read it? You have to read it.”
“Um yeah – we’ve read it… like a year ago. Thanks though.”
Joel Stein’s Awesome Column in Time Magazine. Sure I read the rest of Time too, but usually after I read the Awesome Column. However, if there’s a difficult story elswewhere in the magazine I know I’m supposed to read to fulfill my duty as a caring and informed human, I use it as my incentive to make it through the depressing statistics and heart wrenching anecdotes. You could call The Awesome Column my reading dessert. Joel Stein makes everything funny, and I like things that are funny.
New York Magazine. I actually wrote about this magazine last week in glossy. John was packing for Africa, and I was reading New York Magazine’s article on James Franco:
“John you have to take this with you.”
“I’m out of room in my carry-on.”
“It’s a magazine – you can fit it.”
“No I can’t. I have a huge binder.”
“How ‘bout I put holes in it, and then put it in your binder.”
“Ok, how about I rip out the Franco article and you carry it in your pocket.”
“James Franco? You can’t be serious.”
“I am – you have to read this.”
“Fine.” We had a very similar discussion a month early about their piece on bed bugs. This magazine is that good.
The Lovely Bones Ok, this is definitely not funny. Even if you loved it as much as I did, don’t make my same mistake and try to talk anybody, let alone everybody, into it. That’s not the kind of material you can force on another person.
FOOD & BEVERAGE
The Chilada – this is The Lovely Bones of adult beverages. Though I may associate this drink with lazy summer nights in the backyard, the base is Clamato & you can’t just make another person try to enjoy that.
I’ve had so many Facebook status updates about Jack in the Box tacos that I am finally out of material.
Ben & Jerry’s Vanilla Caramel Fudge & Coldstone Banana ice cream This all-important category depends on which of my two pregnancies we’re talking about. After Jake was born, John said he was fully expecting me to give birth to Jake and Ben and Jerry. I ate a pint of this just about every day, which paired with my daily secret second breakfast at McDonalds, helped me achieve those extra 70 lbs every pregnant lady longs for. My enabling friends at the PR agency where I worked would accompany me for mid-day ice cream runs. Shortly before Jake arrived, I sat down at a staff meeting and cracked open a pint. I don’t remember the meeting topic, but I do remember scraping the bottom of the cup about 5 minutes later having inhaled its delicious contents. I looked up with the spoon in my mouth and the entire agency was staring at me, mouths agape.
Coldstone banana was Zach’s fault, and unfortunately my quest for this creamy perfection lead me to one of the moments I am least proud of. I like to think of myself as a really happy-go-lucky customer….I’d go so far as to say the waitstaff person’s dream! But the high school kid behind the counter that summer who broke the news that banana had been replaced with wasabi flavor for a fun promotion, might paint you a different picture. I may have yelled a little, but there was mostly snarky ranting until the kid looked like he might cry, and I had to go storming away with stupid vanilla.
Do you wonder whether God tests you sometimes? That maybe he puts the opportunity in front of you to do the right thing – the hard thing – to see how you might react? Well…. I failed. I was at the library the VERY next day after the wasabi incident, and here comes that poor kid. I darted behind the new releases and hid. I’m sure all I would have had to do was to point at my gigantic pregnant belly, crack a joke and apologize (I would have meant it), but I couldn’t because I was so mortified with myself. It’s been five years, and I obviously still think about that kid, and have a feeling I’m going to have to answer to that one someday. Oh and by the way Coldstone, how’d that wasabi experiment work out for you?
Banana yogurt shakes. The best ones ever were around the corner from my first real job at the headquarters of a stuffy, strict, now-non-existent bank. In hindsight, I don’t know if I should have tried to sneak so many of my coworkers out of our fairly monitored building at 2 pm in our suits and shiny shoes, only to have us return with giant Styrofoam cups of banana yogurt shakes.
Disneyland. Dear parents, it’s never too early to take your kid to Disneyland.
I had not realized my loyalty and devotion to the classic Christmas movie status of Elf, until I was walking from the parking lot at work with some guy who had a desk down the hall. I mentioned Elf, and he said it sucked. Before I knew it, I said sternly that I needed to go and jay-walked across the street, only to end up walking parallel with him, en route to the exact same destination.
Saturday Night Live. We were recently in New York and by a very happy set of circumstances ended up sitting in 30 Rockefeller Center, Studio 8H. It was a Tuesday (the Tuesday before Jay- Z & Betty White – holla!) but we got to see the set guys working. John turned to me and said, “oh no – are you crying?!?” Of course I was. When I got home I likened it to people with simpler tastes perhaps seeing the Sistine Chapel, the Mona Lisa, or the ocean for the first time. In all fairness Roseanne Roseannadanna was my earliest impression in pre-school, and then, ironically, there was that Church Lady phase during middle school.
Twin Peaks. I’m still thankful I was not alone in this during high school. There were a few of us, and we dressed up like the characters to watch, and worked in as many Twin Peaks references as we could into regular conversation. We felt so avant garde, because the majority of our classmates thought it was lame, and us lame by association. I know now we were ahead of our time. Twin Peaks makes Lost look as complicated as Murder She Wrote.
You knew I couldn’t not mention Twilight. Believe me I had no intention of loving Twilight at all, I fell into it. As I’ve heard from my Twilight semi-support group, that’s just kind of how it happens. I am buoyed by the growing network of fellow Twi-moms. For the rest of you, a word to the wise, there are more of us than you might think.
And alas, the DVR. The first piece of technology that I mastered before my tech-savvy husband. It has actually lessened the day-to-day stress of my life. You should have seen the crease in my brow when, back in 2002, I realized that our VCR wouldn’t record channel 7 or my beloved Alias. John would have to huff it down the hill from his very serious seminary studies in the very serious seminary library to take over bedtime so I could watch Sydney Bristow get herself out of yet another jam. The DVR – good for the heart, and the marriage.
I know I get this level of generally unbridled enthusiasm from my dad. When he was into Marie Calendar’s frozen pot pies, he bought me a case of them, twice. The same goes for the Lipton powdered soup in the handy “3:00 pick me up” size. And then there are his movies – My Blue Heaven and Captain Ron starring Kurt Russell. Don’t tease him about Captain Ron – he’ll walk across the street just to get away from you.
Tally your points and let me know if I owe you a banana yogurt shake.