Thursday, May 27, 2010

T3T: I Got Game, Yo.

Um. I don't like to lose. Seriously. No, I take that back. I hate to lose. I like to be awesome at things, and if I know I'm not going to do well...I ain't doin it. Hey, even I have to have a character flaw (muah ha). Anyway this need to not suck ass made me miss out on some fun goodness growing up. I was "the banker" in Monopoly (Come on, that job isn't even necessary). I only set up Mouse Trap to drop the marble and watch the little gizmos click in to place to, well, trap the mouse (but I'm pretty sure no real kid ever actually *played* that game). Long story short I either sat out or pouted like a little punk when I inevitably lost a round of Hungry Hungry Hippos. Oh, or I read all the Tri-Bond cards so I'd know the answers. What? You know you've done that before...How else would people know that the common thread among "Ride, Field and Brown" is Sally. Sally Field, sure. We know her. But Sally Ride? I haven't heard that name since 4th grade. And yeah, Sally Brown is Charlie Brown's sister, but we just don't use her surname. Whatev Tribond.

What was I talking about? Oh. Games. I like em more now. Still pout if I lose. But I try to internalize. Most of the time...

Phase 10

I used the "most of the time," because of this lil game right here. It kind of ruined a Mother's Day. Ok, ok. I ruined Mother's Day. A few years ago I thought it'd be fun for the fam to all play together. I played for the first time the Spring Break before and thought it was crazy fun. I should have known the initial circumstances wouldn't repeat themselves. I got good cards. And the added bonus of watching a couple nearly break up while fighting for not last place. I believe one retort was screamed, "I WOULD RATHER GIVE TRAVIS EVERY CARD HE NEEDS JUST SO YOU LOOOOOOSE!!! I MAY NOT WIN BUT. NEITHER. WILL. YOOOOU!!" It was pretty amazing. Um. I carried on the spastic tradition at home. I think Sister skipped me for no good reason. Several times in a row. I got pissed. Yelled. A lot. Mom made us stop. Despite all that, still love the game. Crazy fun.


All that useless movie trivia is put to good use here. Know why I own a bookcase chock full of movies instead of books? Because there's not a game I can win by knowing the ins and outs of my favorite books. And if there were, no one would play with me. This is where the competitive edge really comes out. You betcha I'm fightin to be the first shout in an all-play. This is my sport. I don't golf. Play tennis. Water ski. Bungee jump. I Scene. And I said it once, I'll say it again. If I'm on your team, you'd do well to listen to me. Al Pacino's first Oscar wasn't for Godfather...It was for Scent of a Woman. Hoo-Ah!! (That's for you, Adrienne :)

Circle of Death

What can I say? You can take the girl out of Tuscaloosa, but you can't take Tuscaloosa out of the girl. How can at least one drinking game not make the list? And hey, this way...even if you lose, you win. Thus leaving me sans grumpy pants. They've been replaced with drunky pants. Those are better.

And with that, I implore you to get your game on. Or your drink on. Whatev. It's almost the long weekend. You're allowed.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

T3T: There's an app for that.

Lurv my phone. Or "miPhone" if we're going for the phonetic spelling. And this is actually pretty surprising considering my phone history. This tight-wadded, frugal biddy was the classic, "Um, I'll take whatever comes standard with the phone package, danke." customer, hence the brick of a Nokia that I used for so many years. Eventually I upgraded to a smaller flip phone, which despite being classified as a "camera phone" displayed images that brought back fond memories of old school arcades.

Nice pixelation, Mari--Uh, Mellie...

Anyway, after losing that fine piece of machinery on the Crimson Ride, I downgraded back to the brick, then Sister gave me her old Motorola Razor (which I thought was way awesome, but everyone else had already advanced to touch screens and rolly balls, which this one, well, lacked.). Fast forward a year of me longing for an iPhone, and the Razor screen damaged by all of my poking--trying to will it into becoming a touch screen--when the day finally arrived. It was my birthday and my contract was up: new phone + discount = Winner.

Yeah, my media package costs more, but it was so worth it. I went on an app downloading frenzy. (But only the free ones. I'm still cheap. Just with a nicer phone.) I've just recently crossed over to my fifth page of apps. I use very few. But. But...they are mine. I could use these any time I want to. Wanna practice Guitar Hero? Check. Need a tip calculator? Check. Learn to play piano? Why, yes please.

So here we go: My top three favorite apps (of the day, at least). Enjoy.

Ah, Facebook. It's really the gold standard of apps, isn't it? A month ago, TweetDeck would have shared this spot dedicated to social media, but I've pretty much given up on it. I used to check my tweets every few hours or so, but now I'm so far behind, I can't think of catching up. I'll just check Shit My Dad Says and OfficeTally independently and call it a draw. Facebook though...That's something I can't give up. I like to know what's going on. And since my new job has it blocked, this top-seeded (that's first page material, yo) app has become my best little buddy. What? I have an eager curiosity. Nothing wrong with that. Moving on.

Up until, um...Three weeks ago, I lived without DVR. What th-- But wh-- HOW? I. Don't. Know. Did you know you don't have to watch commercials? Or set your VCR to record Lost if you're going out? It's pretty amazing. In all seriousness, I knew what I was missing without having the DVR--and even with it, I had to record Lost this week on my old school VCR (There's just too much good TV on Tuesdays: Glee, Biggest Loser [oh man, gotta talk about that later] and Lost. All in one night? Just too much. Something move to Monday or Wednesday. Nothing comes on those nights.) Anyway, back to matter at hand. Directv has an app where you can set programs to record from your phone to your DVR. I'm sure pretty much every other cable provider has this too, but I lurv it. And I've gone a little record-happy lately.

For your entertainment, a little Directv Free Association: Gypsy's coming on? I love Natalie Wood. Kurt sings Rose's Turn on Glee. Did I set Glee to record? Did now. Oh, and the pilot for that new show with Bradley Whitford and Colin Hanks comes on tomorrow. Did I like Angels and Demons? I think his hair was better. We'll see. True Blood!! Ah crap, last season. Set season pass starting June 13. Winner. Skarsgard. Yum. His dad was that guy in Mama Mia. Ooo Mama Mia's on! Record. Aaaaand, scene. Hope you enjoyed.

Ok, this last one is kind of embarrassing. I dig the Tap Farm. It's iPhone's answer to Farmville. Do we all remember how I feel about Farmville? Shall I remind you? I don't even know if Facebook is still supportive of the Interactive National Farmers Union. I've blocked pretty much all farm-mafia-fish-cafe updates, so I don't know what's the new thing anymore. Anyway, I do love TF because it's so much less stressful than Farmvilletownfield. I buy my own trees. I pick my own animals. Harvest my own crops. Don't have any nagging neighbors begging for chickens or plum trees. It's mindless, and the perfect time waster at work. Once I've sleuthly checked out Blogspot (now they need an app. That'd be #1) and made the Facebook rounds, if I have a little extra time on my hands I check the farm. And it's perfect for work, because if someone happens to see me it looks like I'm doing some busy and important emailing (because I always put on the concentrating face), when in reality I'm harvesting digital tulips. Ah, the goodness of trickeration, my friends.

Until next time, Happy Apping!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Lessons Learned from Iron Man 2

1. Mickey Rourke has talons. And apparently they are the source of his I-may-not-be-hot-anymore-but-I'm-crazy-awesome powers.

2. Scarlett Johansson is the new Zoolander. Perpetually stuck in what I like to call the Blue Steel Phase.

3. Assholes are hot.

4. Unevenly self-tanned douchebags are not. But they're funny.

5. Gwyneth Paltrow is a pall upon the film industry. You're as annoying as your character's name and should be put down. You know Blythe Danner's gotta be disappointed in the offspring.

6. Don Cheadle and Terrance Howard might as well be the same person. Cast change? What cast change?

7. No Peter Billingsley cameo makes me all sad inside. (By the way, WTH, Favreau? You two have a fight or something?)

8. Doesn't live up to Dark Knight sequal staus, but it's still chock full of summer fun. So with my blessing, go get your Stark on.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Book 'em, Danno.

Quick apartment update: After a short trip home this weekend I returned with the cat, bedroom TV and a bookcase chock full of movies (a good recent chunk due to Movie Gallery’s bankruptcy. Their misfortune is my opportunity to stock up on awesome $2 movies. Winner.) Anyway, I’m one dining room table away from being officially moved in.

Now back to the matter at hand. Yes, it’s ridiculously overdue, but hey, better late than never, yes? I lurv books. Started at an early age. No, I didn’t want to learn to read like my sister did, who would spend hours perfecting every pronunciation, cadence and nuance of the Cat and the Hat, but I quietly watched other people until I understood it. And then I read. Different strokes, folks. The suddenly new hobby was only fueled by the fact that my grandmother was a librarian at Troy State and would always bring home books for us. I loved visiting her library. I remember her olive green rotary phone with the shoulder caddy, a heron-choking frog proclaiming to never give up pinned to the wall:

And I remember the exact locations of my favorite books...

This being one of them. Everything she touched turned to candy. She thought it was awesome until she got a tummy ache. Never understood the moral of that one…I coulda taught that girl a thing or two. Stop the bingeing right as the sugar sweats kick in. Geez.

As briefly mentioned, I promised categories. And so I present to you my top 3 favorite authors, favorite audio books and all-time-read-over-and-over again faves.

Top Authors

David Sedaris We all know my love of Sedaris. I won’t elaborate. I’ll just say: Me Talk Pretty One Day, Naked, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim, When You are Engulfed in Flames. Buy them. Read them. Love them. Holidays on Ice, and David’s recounts of his time as a Macy’s elf named Crumpet will renew your Christmas tradition. Seriously. Only awesomeness can come from getting to know him.

Augusten Burroughs I tend to lump Burroughs and Sedaris in the same category: gay, funny, memoirists. But the fact of the matter is that Burroughs' background is much darker and disturbed, but he still maintains his humor, which is nothing but outstanding. I'd start with Running with Scissors then move on to Dry and Possible Side Effects. And if you're looking for a real feel-good-all-fuzzy-inside story, check out Wolf at the Table, a reflection on his absent father. In a word: Haunting. Buuhh.

Charlaine Harris The Sookie Stackhouse books are awesome. Wicked awesome. Devoted one of my first blogs to their awesomeness. A new book’s out—Don’t think I’ll be able to wait til it gets to paperback. Hardbacks are an investment, people.

Top Audiobooks

Harry Potter Series Jim Dale is a genius. Best narrator I’ve ever heard. There’s nothing worse than a poorly read audiobook, but thankfully you never have to worry about that with Jimmy. I spent many an hour crocheting and listening to the Harry books. That pretty much solidifies my cool status.

Kite Runner/A Thousand Splendid Suns Beautifully written and spoken. Seriously, if you didn't know compassion before, you will after.

David Sedaris Best voice and best writing style ever. I have audio versions of all of his books. Been to two readings, and will go to as many as I can. I realize this makes me intimidatingly cool. Please, don't feel threatened by me. We can still remain friends.

Honorable Mention: Julie Andrews: A Memoir of my Early Years—So I’m only on the second disc and Julie, at five years old, has already declared her mother untrustworthy and a hussy. Mary Poppins said hussy. This has got to be good.

Top Ultimate Faves

Jane Eyre Admittedly, I ready Jane Eyre at 12 for the Accelerated Reader points. It was either that or 15 Goosebumps books. I chose the more impressive looking. But it was the first book I fell in love with. I didn't become a Bronte fan. I became a Jane and Edward fan. Why am I single? I'm pretty sure it's because no man's every made me feel like Mr. Rochester made Teen Mellie feel. Obviously my standards are very high.

To Kill a Mockingbird I'm a Southerner. Do I really need to explain this selection? If you're from south of the Mason-Dixon line and haven't read it, we need to talk (ahem, Sister.). It's required reading for a reason. "Miss Jean Louise, stand up. Your father's passin'." Oh God, it gets me every time.

Last Picture Show 1950s. Small town Texas. Coming of age. Secrets and scandal. Larry McMurtry. Can you really go wrong? If you're not a reader, watch the movie. It's just as wonderful. Also one of my all time faves.

And finally, I haven't read it yet, but I'm already anticipating its amazingness. Inside Inside by James Lipton. 1. It's a look behind "Inside the Actors Studio." (Winner) 2. It was mega-on-sale. (Double winner) Will report back when it officially enters the fave category.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Balance, Schmalance. I'll figure it out eventually.

So you know that healthy balance between work life and real life? Yeah, I haven't figured that out yet. Still getting into the rhythm of the new job and settling into the new place, and that has sadly pushed blogging to the back burner. And that sucks because I have so much goodness to share, including my newest TV crushes and favorite Glee quotes ("I'm like Tinkerbell, Finn. I need applause to live!!") and this week's Top 3 Thursday: Books. I already know it's gonna be a big one. Several categories. And I need to do it justice. So instead of half-assing (like last week, ehem), I'm just gonna share what's been keeping me busy the evenings of my first week of gainful employment, and dive into the literary love this weekend.

So until then, I present to you: My apartment in progress!

The Living Room (aka "So Chock Full of Color I'll Never Live with a Man with this Furniture")

The Bedroom Fireplace (aka "Winner.")

The Start to the Alabama/Jack Room


I've really had so much fun getting my apartment ready, but I can't wait to have it done. I've got a pile of junk in my "dining room" and it's driving my crazy. Bathroom's still not organized. Bedroom walls are still pretty bare. The kitchen has a rug. That's it. Don't even have refrigerator magnets up yet. Hence, they're not pictured. I'm of the discipline that if you can't see it, it doesn't exist. I don't care if that's the mentality of a six-year-old. It helps me get through these difficult, cluttered times...

Friday, May 7, 2010

T3T Negligence: Part Deux

So here we are again. Friday. And I'm just getting around to Top 3 Thursday. It's a shame, I know. Just repeat last week's excuses, add on finally getting cable and Internet (had lots of catch-up TV watching to do) and one big, "le tired" and there ya go.

Not to mention the fact, this week's topic: Top 3 Favorite Outdoor Activities.

Um...I'm what one might describe as "indoorsy."

It's not that I'm so indoorsy that I don't like getting dirty or hot or blah, blah blah...I just like central air better. I don't dig the water sports; I was 10 the last time I fished (and that was with a cane pole); I've never been camping; And I'm not crazy about laying out because well, I'd have to be in a bathing suit and sweat uncomfortably for three hours.

I think I'd enjoy hiking if I ever lived near a big park or nature trail (Demetri Martin time out: Hiking is just walking where it's ok to pee. Sometimes old people hike by mistake. Time in.), but I don't and I haven't, so it can't go on the list.

I tell ya what, the one thing I've thought about most since the weather's gotten so pretty--so go ahead and reconsider this post "Top 1 Friday"--is kicking off my shoes, walking barefoot in the grass and flopping on the ground to stare at the clouds, like when we were kids. I want to pick dandelions and watch ants. I want to flatten out an old refrigerator box and slide down a big hill. Honestly, that's what I want to do. That's it. Roll around in the grass like a dog. But I can't. Because I'm a grown woman and people would look at me strangely.

Carl and Ellie did it. Why can't I? Oh gosh...think I'm gonna cry just thinkin about C&E. *Sniffles*

Oh well, maybe this will act as the jump start to my "Live Like You're a Kid Revolution." We'd all be a lot happier. And covered in grass stains. How is that not awesome?