Two hits, 140 characters: Vengaboys

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Oh my god, I have stumbled on a gem. To refresh your memory, Vengaboys are the fantastic foursome that brought us the hit tunes “We Like to Party” (aka the Six Flags theme song) and “Boom, Boom, Boom, Boom!” (as in: I want you in my room…) a song that was so completely inappropriate for me to sing aloud in the school hallways (but when has that ever stopped me before?). Anyways, this Twitter account basically speaks for itself.

Vengaboys (@Vengaboys) Europe’s #1 Party Act. Up & Down, We Like To Party, Boom Boom Boom, Going to Ibiza, 20 million singles, 5 million albums and still modest to the max! Location: Uranus ·

-These Vengaboys sure do have a penchant for hyperbole, now don’t they? (My 7th grade English teacher would be kvelling right now…) 20 MILLION singles?? 5 MILLION albums?? Honeys, even The Beatles don’t have 20 million singles and they are the original “Europe’s #1 Party Act” if you think about it… that brings me to…

-I don’t think that deeming yourself “Europe’s #1 Party Act” and then claiming that you’re “Still modest to max” goes hand in hand. And who still uses “To the max!” anyways, really? Watching some Saved By The Bell re-runs, are we Vengapeeps?

-You’re from Uranus?!! I can’t tell if they’re trying to be witty or just straight up copying jokes scribbled on a 6th grade boy’s notebook. The thing is, they continually refer to Uranus in their tweets (like a looooot) — and that leads me to the next part of this blog.

So, usually I just cease and desist after the Twitter description, but I simply cannot be silenced in this case. Here are the top 3 most awesome Vengaboys tweets of recent times:

1) “Hello, residents of planet Earth!! This meteor in Russia is not from Uranus… So you know!” — Hello, Vengaboys!! Thank you! We were all confusing Russia and Uranus!!

2) “The Pope Benedict XVI resigns on 28 February! We,ve been invited to perform @ the Vatican. We’re sorry no can’t do!” — Again, not sure what to make of this, but I’m assuming this cannot be real. And if it was real (which is was not) why “no can’t do??!” It’s the freaking Vatican. You always say “yes can’t do!” to the Vatican, duh.

3) “People, and other creatures, of Letterkenny, Ireland! Come see us tonight at The Pulse and party til you don’t have a pulse no more!” — Dear people and other Irish creatures. We would literally like to kill you with our “music”.

Whatever, guys, I can’t h8 on u too much. You’ve brought so much joy to this lil’ guy.

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One Hit, 140 characters: Lou Bega

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Lou Bega and I have beef. This beef largely (entirely) stems from the fact that despite his inclusion of 10 girls’ names in his (one) hit tune “Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit Of…), he neglected to mention “Jennifer,” even though he has RITA in there twice. Honestly, who is this “Rita” character and how can she be more important than one of the most influential female names of the 90s (Aniston, Lopez, Love-Hewitt, Abidor.. NEED I SAY MORE?)

Now, before I get to Lou’s Twitter description, I have one, two, three, four, five questions:

1) What is with the 90s and parenthetical titles? See also: Hey Leonardo (She Likes Me for Me), Good Riddance (Time of Your Life).

2) What happened to Mambos No.s 1-4? No seriously, I want to know.

3) Did you know that these are actually, for real some of the lyrics? “Anything fly, it’s all good let me dump it. Please set in the trumpet.”

4) “And if it looks like this then you’re doing it right” — Not sure if you get the concept of a song, Lou, but I can’t see you. How am I supposed to know if I’m “doing it right”? (And no, the music video has no answers. I checked.)

5) Did people actually dance the “Mambo No. 5”? Like is that an actual thing that happened like the Cupid Shuffle or the Macarena?

Anyways, I decided to check in on Lou to see how he’s been doing in the aftermath of his hit “Mambo No. 5” (A little bit of…) and I was shocked by what I saw.

Lou Bega (@LouBegaOfficial — not to be confused with the “imposter” Lou Begas): “New single Sweet Like Cola release date: 23.07.10 New album Free Again release date: OUT NOW. Berlin.”

Here are the main points you need to take away from that:

-Lou Bega has an actual song called “Sweet Like Cola” and it has these actual lyrics “I’ll be your sugar daddy you’ll be my sugar cane” and it sounds like if Raffi and Sean Kingston did a collaboration. (Listen here!)

Lou Bega doesn’t understand the concept of “new” or the concept of teasing a “release date”.

-But, most importantly and earth-shatteringly: “Berlin.” You read that right! Lou Bega is German. I repeat. Lou. Bega. Is. From. Germany. Like, his tweets are in German and the only singular person he follows on Twitter is named “Fritz” and his primary language is German. How did none of us ever know this?! Where are your German lady friends, Lou? I suppose “A little bit Wilhelmina in my life, a little bit of Irmhilde by my side….” just doesn’t have the same flow…

One hit, 140 characters: Edwin McCain

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You can tell a lot about a person from their Twitter description. Mine, for example, cites me as a “TV Enthusiast” (and that’s just because “Dawson’s Creek Enthusiast” was too raw).

For reasons I can’t explain, I’ve been pretty fascinated with 90s one-hit wonders’ Twitters as of late. I’m trying hard to get them to follow me, but so far Blessid Union of Souls are the only ones who’ve taken the bait. What can I say? They like me for me!

Anyways I’m now devoting this blog to dissecting their Twitter descriptions, because they’re extremely telling. First up, “I’ll Be” singer Edwin McCain.

Edwin McCain (@TheEdwinMcCain — please note the “The”): “He recorded two of the biggest love songs in the history of pop music, McCain still tours like a troubadour, balancing his massive pop success and family life.”

-I do not think you can qualify “I Could Not Ask For More” as one of the biggest love songs in the history of pop music, and that’s mainly because I had to Google it to remember what it was called. (I’ll give you “I’ll be” Mr. McCain, you had me wanting boys to offer to be “my crying Soldier” (what my 4th grade mind thought he was saying)…No really, any takers?)

-Here’s Merriam-Webster’s definition of a Troubadour, just so we’re clear Edwin: “one of a class of lyric poets and poet-musicians often of knightly rank who flourished from the 11th to the end of the 13th century chiefly in the south of France and the north of Italy and whose major theme was courtly love.” This week, Edwin will be playing a gig at “Nick’s Crawfish Boil” in Jackson, Mississippi.

-Finally, I cannot imagine the taxing burden you must put on your family by trying to balance hearing “I’ll Be” in the occasional Dawson’s Creek re-run and spending time with them. I feel for the McCain kids. They are probably off hanging with Everclear singing “Father of Mine”…

10 jarringly messed up things from our (collective) childhoods.

By Jen Abidor

No matter how normal and well-adjusted you turned out as a grown up, I’d just like to take a moment to tell you just how severely damaged your childhood truly was. You’re welcome.

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1. Hangman: This is literally a game about the death penalty. The stakes here are pretty high — you guess the wrong letter of the alphabet, some dude is going to die for it. And it’s not just your regular old-fashioned hanging… his dismembered body parts will be hung limb by limb. And we never even bothered to question just what it was this guy did to deserve his execution. I mean, what? You just know there were some sadistic kids out there who guessed Q’s and X’s just for funsies. Sick bastards.
2. Completely inappropriate children’s songs, part one: “Ring Around The Rosy”: Sure, everyone knows this playground classic. So much fun, right? LOL let’s all hold hands and walk in a circle and then fall down for shits and giggles. This was endlessly entertaining, and yet no one ever really thought to listen to what the song was actually about. “Ashes, Ashes, we all fall down”. How was it not just OK, but completely commonplace for us to sing a song about a mass child cremation?! HOW?! I just cannot.
3. Completely inappropriate children’s songs, part two: “Rockabye Baby”: WTF kind of lullaby is this?! It is literally a song about an infant falling from a tree and dying. What in the hell was this child doing up in a tree top in the first place? That is completely irresponsible parenting! Instead of singing about it, maybe someone should have called child services?
4. “One of these things is not like the other” song from Sesame Street: Let’s point fingers at someone for “being different”! Conform or you don’t belong. And if you don’t conform, just make up imaginary woolly mammoth friends and name them excessively wordy things…ahem, Big Bird. The fact that you named your imaginary friend “Aloysius Snuffleupagus” instead of like, Bob, is a precise demonstration of why you had the need to make up friends in the first place.
5. Trix commercials: Do not get me started on these fat greedy little children. This rabbit has dedicated his little bunny life solely to the acquisition of some fruity cereal, and you little shits can’t just give the guy a bowlful? Come.on.
6. Lucky rabbit’s feet: And while we’re on the topic of rabbit abuse, remember these ridiculous furry things? First we deny them of cereal, and now we’re amputating rabbits to increase the possibility that our 5th grade crushes will notice us or that we’ll ace that math test? And as if animal amputation weren’t bad enough, let’s go ahead and dye them fuschia and pop ’em on a keychain so they’ll always be right there with us on our JanSport backpacks.
7. The Boy Meets World Halloween episode: You know which one I’m talking about. I’d write about it, but that would require watching it. And I’m not too confident I’d be able to handle that.
8. Eeyore, from Winnie The Pooh: First of all, why isn’t Eeyore named Donkey? What was A.A thinking? “Tigger, Owl, Piglet….EEYORE!” What in the world is an Eeyore? Or a Pooh for that matter? And why didn’t we ever bother to question this innate animal naming inconsistency? But, I digress. The real question is why didn’t we question this depressed donkey? The dude’s catchphrase was: “Thanks for noticing me”… Come on, Winnie. Get your head out of your honey pot for just a sec and notice that your friend has issues. But, seriously, who can blame Eeyore? The guy has a nail permanently affixed to his butt. That cannot be pleasant.
9. Operation, the board game: You mean this dude has to endure an entire open body surgery, and we’re entrusting his survival on the shaky, sticky hands of a 7 year old? That is completely unacceptable.
10. Body glitter: Because, just no.

Hakuna Nostalgia

"Rafiki: Oh yes, the past can hurt. But the way I see it, you can either run from it, or learn from it...." Or, relive it?

This weekend’s box office results are a prime example of the circle of life in action…everything old will be new again. The Lion King 3D (originally in theaters in 1994…) crushed everybody else like the stampede crushed Mufasa. Far behind the Disney classic was Contagion, which came out last weekend and has single-handedly caused Purell hand-sanitizer (or those flowery Bath and Body works ones if you’re into that…) to sell out at every drug store in the U.S.

The three other big movies that came out this weekend were Drive (contributing to the year of the Gosling…), Straw Dogs (the trailer alone gave me nightmares), and the misnamed I Don’t Know How She Does It (should be called… I don’t know WHY she does it… as in… why does SJP insist on continuing to make awful “movies”.) Other than Drive which was critically adored, I’m not really surprised by these lackluster numbers…

But I digress. The topic of this post is nostalgia. As a recent inhabitant of the “real world” my entire life is nostalgia right now (and I don’t see an end in sight…) Why was Lion King number one at the box office this weekend? Was it the riveting 3-dimensional effects (ooh! Zazu looks like he’s flyyyying!) Nope. They were generally underwhelming and unnecessary, and I didn’t even get the special edition Simba glasses. Ticket Lady: “Those are for children only…” Me: “Yes, so what’s the problem? OH wait… I’m 22.”

The point is…there was no way I was going to miss a chance to feel like that 5 year old girl who ran out of the theater during the stampede in 1994 (I sat through it this time, but my very boring adult 3D glasses fogged up during Mufasa’s death.) There was no way I was going to miss seeing such a wonderful story that originally didn’t rely on any gimmicks or glitter.

Nostalgia is EVERYWHERE, and it connects people on an entirely different level. The 90s Nick slot is one of the highest rated late night programming slots. The crowd goes wild at the bar when the DJ plays some “vintage” BSB or Britney. The Lion King was the #1 movie in theaters 17 years after its original release. But, as Woody Allen addresses in Midnight in Paris, it seems we’ll always be caught in a perpetual cycle of nostalgia (the true circle of life…)

We are conditioned to believe that the past was so much better than the present.  Are we simply re-imagining those days as the “good old days” or was culture really just that much better? Debatable. I think that my generation is one that is particularly obsessed with nostalgia, and it’s largely because the cultural landscape has changed immensely (I babysat a 4 year old with an IPad last week…) In 10 years will Justin Bieber’s songs evoke a similar reaction as “I Want it That Way”? Uh, I hope not. And I cringe when I wonder what music will be the definitive music of the ’10s…

For now, I’d rather go to the movie theater for an hour and a half serving of nostalgic Disney bliss.

The night I became a germaphobe…

August 9, 5:28pm

Jen Abidor:  UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES WILL we go to contagion.

September 17, 10:45 pm

Jen Abidor: “Two tickets for contagion, please…”

Turns out my words are just as empty as Gwyneth Paltrow’s autopsied head. 

…But that’s a good thing, because Contagion is just a brilliantly executed look into the hysteria surrounding pandemics. As a media studies gal I was particularly intrigued by the Jude Law character and his use of blogging for EVIL. I promise faithful readers (all three of you) that I will never use my powers for evil. Luckily, this is a movies blog so the closest I could come is probably recommending that you see that Bucky Larson porn star movie…

Here are a few biblically themed life lessons to be learned from Contagion:

You shall not commit adultery: Um seriously,  Gwynny. Cheat on your husband and you WILL be patient zero for like, the worst pandemic ever…and everyone will see your brains. Don’t mess.

You shall not eat pigs: I’m just saying, it wasn’t Matzo Ball Soup that started this whole thing.

Honor your father and mother:… Or really, when your dad tells you not to, don’t go KISSING people in the snow when there is a freaking DISEASE going around…OH hey, millions of people have died, but at least we’re making snow angels.

You shall not steal (humans): Otherwise you get the placebo, bitches.

If thou art Matt Damon, thou art invincible: (I’m paraphrasing here…) Duh.

And there you have it. Go see Contagion if you get the chance, but don’t be surprised if you feel the urge to whip out your Swine Flu mask from ’09 (please, you know you had one…)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer movies had me a blast…

Today when I emerged from my apartment en route to the movie theater at the ungodly hour of 3pm (it’s a Sunday, jeez!), I had two epiphanies: 1) I am a terrible blogger and 2) the need for my fleece hoodie and inability for me to wear shorts confirmed for me something I’ve been unwilling to truly accept until today: Summer is over. But, my blogging was just on brief hiatus as I let the summer lazies get the best of me…

Nevertheless, I’ve decided to reflect on a summer of great (or mediocre or just plain absurd) movies. Here are some one sentence summer-ies  from where i left off:

Monte Carlo: A rip off of the Lizzie McGuire movie that demonstrates that Europe is only fun if you’re RICH and that Disney is unlike wine (i.e. does not get better with time.)  See also: “British Accents, inconsistent” under Hathaway, Anne or “One Day”.

Horrible Bosses: Hilarious summer comedy inspired by Hitchcock’s “Strangers on a Train” (not the one starring Danny DeVito…) Jennifer Aniston must have BROWN hair in order to be extremely kinky, lest people start associating her nymphomaniac character with “The Rachel”

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 2: Take a moment to recall the Voldie celebration and Draco hug (a hug from Voldemort is like a Hallmark card.) The HP crew must have done something similar upon realizing that they made the best reviewed summer movie on Rotten Tomatoes. It made me believe in magic. 

Captain America: The First Avenger: I love you Chris Evans, even when you look like Chicken Little… As an American Studies loyalist, what’s not to love.

Friends With Benefits: In the Mila Kunis vs. Natalie Portman “fun buddy” comedy showdown… Kunis takes the cake. Flashmobs? Check. JT rapping? Check. But alas, I still yearn for a day where Justin will bring MusicBack. 

Smurfs: This smurf-vie was smurf-diculous but I smurfing loved it. Did you find this smurf-tance smurfing annoy-smurf? Than DO NOT see this smurfing movie! This is basically how it goes.

Crazy, Stupid, Love: Despite the title’s egregious disregard for the rules of grammar, this was probably my absolute favorite movie of summer. I had the time of my life…and I owe it all to you, Ryan Gosling. But serious question time: WHY did Jessica’s dad have to flip through her nudie pics? Really, why?

Midnight in Paris: The only time I’ve ever hated Rachel McAdams. Seriously. Otherwise, it was fun.

The Change-Up: I remember not really liking it and then kinda sorta ending up enjoying it, but I honestly can’t remember why. From what I recall it was Freaky Friday on crack, or something…

The Help: A lot can be learned about a film from the women’s bathroom directly after:

Woman #1- Sob Sob Sob Sob Whimper Sob

Woman # 2- *Sniffles* The Help?

Woman #1- YES! *wahhhhhhhh*

But seriously, loved the book, loved the movie. I couldn’t cry at college graduation, probably because I was saving my tears for this and One Day (see below…) Also- Jessica Chastain is going to be HUGE.

One Day: When I went to see The Help, I accidentally gave away the ending to One Day to a very irate man in the row in front of me. So take note… IF YOU DON’T WANT TO KNOW THE ENDING STOP READING…

…Anne Hathaway totally kicks it, and we are forced to look at her mangled corpse for far too long. In fact, she inspired a new verb as in, “When I was crossing the street against the light I was totally almost Anne Hathawayed….” The movie was good, sure. But it manipulates your heartstrings more than Marley and Me (I’m saying this hypothetically because I obviously don’t watch movies about animals…) AND YES, when Anne Hathaway Mia Thermopolises (i.e. straightens her fugtastic hair) she looks attractive. Read this blog post for some more hilarity.

And there you go. Keep your eyes peeled for some more observations about life, liberty and the pursuit of movies. I promise they’ll be more frequent.

(13) and (14) But you’re too young to die!

 

On a frigid and snow-filled day in January my roommates and I decided to have a movie marathon. Well, we didn’t so much decide as get shut in by the horrific Massachusetts snow. I had recently “won” eight DVDs in a silent auction at my Sorority’s national convention. While other girls bid on bedazzled Swarovski unicorns and lettered apparel, I was drawn to a pile of ultimate chick flicks. It included every movie based on a Nicholas Sparks novel, minus the good one about old people (The Notebook) and the bad one about old people (Nights with Harrison Ford? Maybe? Richard Gere…Yes, definitely Gere…in Rodanthe.) It also had Wedding Crashers, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, and for a reason I can’t quite fathom: Footloose. Don’t get me wrong, I’m down with Kevin Bacon. It was just a “one of these things is not like the others” kind of moment.

Sidenote: Remember this? I’m pretty sure that it teaches children intolerance…If someone is not like you, make sure you have a fancy musical number that points it out to everyone else.

Anyways, I have a point, I promise (Legally Blonde, anyone?) The point is: on that freezing day we decided to warm our cold cold hearts with some tearjerkers: A Walk to Remember and Sisterhood. By tearjerker, I mean Jen bawling inconsolably, holding a box of tissues, and Kerry wondering how she was possibly friends with such a freak. (Really Kerry is just heartless apparently… we watched not ONE but TWO young girls die of Leukemia for crying out loud.)

This brings me to today… a lazy sunday (wake up in the late afternoon…) I clung to the final pages of the newly released fifth Sisterhood book, my face a mess with tears. I declared it a movie day with my mom, and after some classic Leave it to Beaver, she opted for Walk to Remember over the other on-TV option: Mrs. Doubtfire. We chose tears over crossdressing. Shane West over Robin Williams. Once that was over, I decided to recreate that January day in the sweltering June weather. I convinced Mom to watch Sisterhood with me too… warning her that she was about to watch a very similar movie.

Now, at face value, the two movies don’t seem to have that much in common. One is about four teens who worship a pair of jeans, one is about a teen who worships…god. One is about teen angst and friendship and love and changing your opinion about someone and forbidden romance. Wait, which one is which? You can’t tell, can you?

But the major overlap is in the movies’ matching Leukemia storylines. When young people get cancer and die it is heart-wrenchingly sad. Trust me. I will cry every single time, no matter how horrible the film. In real life it is absolutely devastating, in film life it is a really convenient way to manipulate weepers like me into sobbing.

Jamie (Walk to Remember) and Bailey (Sisterhood) have so much in common, that I genuinely felt I was watching the same movie. “They already worked their magic… they brought me to you” “You’re my angel” “She had her miracle…it was you.”

OMG so, Landon/Tibby totally didn’t like Jamie/Bailey at first. In fact they found her super annoying and basically really lame. Jamie with her SWEATERS  and Bailey with her BEING 12 AND SHIT…As time goes by, they start to like…then love… Jamie/Bailey, only to find out that Jamie/Bailey will die in approximately 32 minutes of film, at the precise moment where it makes dramatic sense. But don’t worry Jamie/Bailey will make sure Landon/Tibby knows that he/she is A MIRACLE. Oh no! Jamie/Bailey is gone, but Landon/Tibby is changed…forever…

I’m sure the same could be said for lots of movies, but these were the two I happened to watch together on two different occasions. What can I say? I’m a sucker for formula.

Other quick observations about both movies:

They both have a weepy Father/Child reunion scene…but the one in Walk to Remember gets me every time.

I really like the editing in Sisterhood, how it transitions from different scenes of running or soccer with extreme fluidity that you almost can’t tell where one scene ends and the next begins. Ditto the soundtrack… It’s actually a very well-made and well-acted movie, which is why it was reviewed very well.

Anyways that was my Sunday Funday to start off a week of movies!

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(12) Life lessons learned from Grease

I caught Grease again tonight for the millionth time. It is chockfull of important morals for impressionable young teenagers. In no specific order, here are ten life lessons from the classic movie, Grease: 

1. Completely change who you are, then boys will like you (extra points if you pick up a nasty smoking habit!) They might try to change too, but that will never work! You’re the one who needs to change.

2. Drop out of school and become a beautician, even if you suck at it. Because, if you do, Frankie Avalon (or in today’s world, Justin Bieber) will come sing to you.

3. There are worse things that you could do than go with a guy or two…

4. Cars can FLY! (No really, they can!)

5. Cliques are awesome. They are even cooler when you give yourselves awesome nicknames…

6. Nerds are stupid: you can totally do mean things like pie them in the face and lift up their skirts. They don’t matter…

7. School schmool! Build cars in your spare time instead. (extra points if you name your car, double extra points if you create an iconic dance about it, triple extra points if you use stolen parts)

8. If you’re moving from a different continent, chances are very high that you will end up at the same high school as your summer fling.

9. Being part of a gang is totally cool as long as there is a meaner and tougher looking gang. Next to them you’re practically like bunnies!

10. Doody and Putzie are perfectly acceptable/non-cruel names for a child!

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(11) I’ve got a love and I know that it’s all mine…

Here’s the sitch, MELODY BOSTIC: I contemplated whether or not to write this post, but decided I should because I’m documenting every movie I watch this summer. It does feel somewhat like I’m blogging about some mundane everyday activity like, “Today I ate breakfast” or “Today I breathed in.” I’ve seen Easy A so many times already that I can almost recite it by heart. So, when I was stuck in the car for two hours on my way home from a Bat Mitzvah (yes, you read that correctly…) desperately needing to pee (shocker) I decided to watch this gem on my laptop. I cursed myself when I downloaded it from iTunes the day before it was made available for instant play on Netflix, but it was definitely a good investment.

It is the best teen comedy of our time. Period. Emma Stone is amazing. (Plus, she looks exactly like my best friend so I feel like we’re practically besties.) Last summer I spent every day waiting for Easy A to come out and now I all I think about is Crazy Stupid Love, which is destined to be the greatest rom-com of our time. If you haven’t seen the trailer, acquaint yourselves. I predict that this will not only be the sleeper hit of the summer, but a true keeper.

 

 

 

 

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