27 September 2010

25 September 2010

Getting Slightly Closer To Meeting Your Mother

How I Met Your Mother's season 6 opener was a nice start to a season that PROMISED to be more like season 1 (with more concrete steps closer to finding the mom), but it's definitely nothing like season 1. Robin's a dirty slob who yet again has to prove her hotness to herself (and to Barney). Barney remains obnoxiously unchanged and carelessly witcivious. These were the worst two things about last season, and they're still very present. As far as Ted's story goes, I'm not sure why this is such a necessary part of the how-i-met-your-mother myth. YET AGAIN, I DID NOT MEET YOUR MOTHER. THIS TIME HER ROOMMATE WAS A LESBIAN. It's a season opener! They can afford to go a little crazy and, I don't know, show the mother's other ankle or something. I take it Ted's not meeting the mother this season. I hope to Marshall I'm wrong.

It was interesting to see an aspect of young marriage that's not totally obvious: in-laws getting too comfortable inserting themselves into their kids' business. Against all odds, Marshall and Lily's marriage foibles continue to entertain me, and I attribute it all to Marshall. He's such a goof troop, it's hard not to identify with him on sight.

So I'm pretty sure I heard Bob Saget say that it wasn't his wedding day at the beginning of this episode. It was, however, the day he met the mother. And it was a wedding. So I guess it's Barney and Robin's wedding, since they're both complete tragic figures now that they've wrecked each other, and the only way to redeem either of them is to make them forget all their woes together. Not that Barney has woes.

I liked this season opener, but I have to admit that I'm feeling slightly let down at the lack of actual mother-presence. Season 1 was great for several reasons, but possibly the most wonderful thing about it was the urgent, excited feeling of accompanying Ted on his direct path towards The Mother. You never knew when she was about to turn up! You never knew when that yellow umbrella would pop out of nowhere and kick off the rest of Ted's life! Maybe it was asking too much, but I really would have loved to get that feeling again this season. Instead, I saw Ted sad in the rain on someone else's wedding day and barely heard anything about meeting the mother, and it all made me feel pretty blue.

But it's NEVER too late to turn all that around. Maybe next week will be the day Ted sees the mother's wrist or ponytail. You never know!

24 September 2010

Dr. Rufus & The Blood Type Solution

This week's episode of Gossip Girl is called "Double Identity," which I guess is a play on Double Indemnity, since every title is a pun on a movie title. But I did a little research and found out that Double Identity is actually also a movie from 2009 starring Val Kilmer. It's about an American doctor in Chechnya, and our episode featured a blonde Chechnyan(ish) "doctor" and an American, maybe. Great, I get it!

How I Felt About Gossip Girl This Time:
  • No matter how many times I hear it, "Milo Humphrey" sounds just like "My li'l Humprey." Which settles the Three-Men-And-a-Baby-Retitling-Dispute. My Li'l Humphrey, 9/8 central.
  • I'm still unconvinced that Blair wouldn't be able to recognize any and every European royal by face.
  • Did Serena wear this gold-jacket outfit last episode? I feel like she's been wearing it for my entire life.
  • Haha, Nate and Stalker talked for 7 hours and then Stalker was able to recap all of it in 45 seconds. Must've been a deep, winding conversation. And she wants to be his life coach? Oh Nate, how does this keep happening to you?
  • Oh no, they're having Serena ID Chuck's body. And, copying True Blood, they've hired a werewolf to accompany her.
"I am Inspector Chevalier and I am a French werewolf in Paris, which is actually nothing to write home about."
  • Oops, correction: Chuck is going by "Henry Prince," not "Henry Francis." 
  • Serena looks so shocked and confused when Chuck tells her "there's no Chuck here":
"Oh, pardon me then. I must have the wrong address."
  • Honestly, Danessa is more brother and sister than Dan and Serena are, and they're technically brother and sister (ish, by law?). So watching Vanessa say "I think...I can help" before she kisses him is disgusting, plus Lily is all set to walk in to get to work on that nursery, oh gross, oh gross...
  • Blair in a sweeping red gown, struggling with a hairdresser: "Perhaps this [hat] should be tilted more comme ├ža?"
  • Serena is leaving "We need to talk" text messages all over town. How neurotic are floozies supposed to get? Can't you just wait to magically bump into these guys?
  • Oh dear, Blair loves the ring that Chuck bought for her without realizing where it comes from. This whole thing is wrapping up quite nicely, and in fact, I'm sort of glad the thieves stole the ring from Chuck. It gave him a heroic story (he wouldn't let go of it) and it helped out in the identification process and it ALSO helped Blair understand what Chuck has been going through etc etc etc. I thought they were too young to be getting engaged, but this ring is really working overtime symbolically.
  • Dan and Nate, just two pals enjoying some beers on the roof wearing pink plaid shirts:
"Most of the time it just feels like you're the only one who gets it."
  • Serena to Blair re: stopping Chuck from leaving forever on a London-bound train: "You and I both know you're the only one who can do that." So true, so convenient. Thank god she knew when and where he would be inside the train station.
  • Serena's FUNNY! "Dan, a good shoulder to cry on. Nate, good shoulders." Just seven hours on a plane and suddenly we've got a comedian!
  • Dan has graduated to wearing Dad Shirts in the park:
"Yeah I got this out of Rufus's drawer. I thought you'd like that."
  • Yet another pink plaid shirt wearer, royalty-style:
"I zeenk ze costume dezigner eez een love viz pink plaids!"
  • And furthermore from the Louvre, I never would have thought Blair would have the guts to take off a shoe in there. It's the little things like this that force us to love Blair.
"I just hope and pray Gossip Girl can't see this OR DO I?"
  • Holy moly, Serena's world caves in in Brooklyn. Danessa, NateStranger - it's too much!
"As you can see, we're together. Not Nate and me! I mean me and Vanessa and Nate and this new one. Not all of us together! I mean both of us with girls. Both of us together, with girls."
  • By the way, here is a better shot of the stranger, who is at least ten years older than these kids:
"Hi how are ya I'm a young 29 if that!!"
  • Haha, Rufus the doctor is the first one to realize that Milo has blood type O-. If both Rufus and Dan have AB+, what must Georgina's blood type be in order to have this kid (if possible)? Sounds like a bio problem to me!*
  • Lily cuts Rufus off before he can even attempt to figure out the blood type problem with "The closest you've come to medical school is having a Lincoln Hawk song licensed for Chicago Hope." IT MUST RUN IN THE FAMILY!
  •  And the teaser from next week looks like Blair and Serena are going to throw a real shitshow next week. PS Are they using another college for the Columbia set because they used Columbia already as the Yale set? Don't do it!
* The Blood Type Solution:
The blood types are A, B, and O. Both types A and B are co-dominant, which means that if Mom gives an A allele and Dad gives a B, the baby will be AB rather than one or the other. O is recessive, which means that both Mom and Dad have to have at least one O in their own blood types (either A(O), B(O), or OO) in order to have an O type baby, and they'd both have to pass on their Os. If Dan is type AB, he's passing on either an A or a B, so even if Georgina is type O, baby Milo would be either Type A(O) or B(O). He couldn't be type O. BADA BING!

ANTM Cycle XV - Italian Vogue Edition

As of last night, there have been three new episodes of America's Next Top Model cycle 15. I'm going to group them all into one recap because that's the way it has to be. Let's go!

First of all, I have to say how pleased I am that the casting special wasn't like "Bleep! Bloop! We are robots & U R our FaceWeb friends" like it has been for the past two cycles. They are truly putting their classiest foot forward for this Italian Vogue grand prize.  And I glean from the past two judging panels that Tyra isn't forcing herself to wear jumpsuits every time this time. Already 1000% better.

Here are all of the contestants and what I think of them:

I forgot this one's name but I will insert it in a second (Kayla). She's a charming lesbian from Bumfuck USA, and she thinks that a peroxide-blonde perm is the best way to get noticed by Tyra Banks.

 I NEVER would have thought that she'd take the kind of pictures she takes. She takes VERY good pictures.
Such as:

There are two sisters, Terra and Chris. They're goofy and Tyra loves them and I wish they'd go all the way. Unfortunately, Terra was eliminated right after her makeover last night. She was a real crier. "Tick tick tick tick FLASH!"

 Chris had a hilarious conversation with this tall, awkward kid, Ann.

Ann is a very, very tall gal. Normally she looks a little dorky, but she photographs just like Paulina Porizkova, even at 6'2":

Chris and Ann were sitting out on the terrace and Chris was trying to make conversation by talking about guys:

Chris: After this we're gonna find you a man. You're laughing, but I'm for real! What's your type?
Ann: Um, hobos are kinda hot.
(they laugh)
Chris: What's the oldest you'll go to?
Ann: Sixty. (laughs)
Chris: (laughing) What kinda man do you want???
Ann: (suddenly serious) He has to be a warlock. (long pause) And he has to spit fire. And he has to know how to make sushi.

True to form, Tyra rattled off a list of extremely tall yet extremely successful models for Ann to look into:
Nadja Auermann

Let's see, who else...
Anamaria got kicked off on the first episode for being anorexic. I liked her because she reminded me of Gaga in the nose:cheek ratio.

Modern Orthodox Jewess "Big Boobs" Esther has G-cup boobs. That is, DDDDDD. And she hides it so well! Everything she's lacking in visible personality is present in implied strength of character.

Rhianna is awesome. She's a hippie whose hippie parents clearly named her after Fleetwood Mac's "Rhiannon." She poses effortlessly and gets artistic inspiration from flora, hence her short-lived nickname, Tree. Tree is great.

Chelsey is blonde, freckled, pale, and gorgeous, plus she has a gap in her front teeth. Remember when Tyra made Danielle (now Dani) get her gap closed?
And Danielle was like "You're crazy. Front gaps are in" even though she stood to get in a lot of trouble? Tyra just had Chelsey get her gap WIDENED as part of her makeover. Huh!

I think this kid looks a lot like Dr. Faye, the new psychologist at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce. Until they bleached her eyebrows, made her hair brown, and kicked her off.

This one is really great in theory. She's a multicultural mom/full-time worker/full-time college student named Liz.

They gave her a WAY better haircut, but she didn't seem very thankful. She's kind of throwing me for a loop in that way.

Here are the girls I still don't care much about:

 Kacey tried out a few cycles ago and didn't make it because she couldn't stop talking about how Isis was technically a man and how she thought this was a girls' competition. Congrats, cross-eyes! You made it into an all-girl season!
(Here it doesn't look like she's cross-eyed, but trust me, when the glasses come off it's like she's been wearing Opti-Grabs for too long.)

Square-Face Jane from Princeton, whose parents built a stable in the backyard.

 This is Lexie, who was an instigator (along with Kacey) during the casting special. Cool hat, Lexie! It is what makes you one of the "quirky" types.

Kendall is gorgeous, but she chose to distinguish herself in the casting special by telling Tyra Banks that she didn't like the idea of semen, so that's why she's a virgin (though they only used the word "pure," never "virgin"). However, I did like it when she followed up with "I just like to cuddle. Something wrong with cuddling?"

 I can't believe a new cycle is upon us already. I'm so excited! I'm also excited to finally be writing recaps for antm, which was the reason I decided to start writing them in the first place.  Hopefully cwtv.com can start putting more than one full episode online at a time so that half of my pictures don't end up smushed and grainy like these. WELCOME BACK, TYRA!

19 September 2010

Look At All I Won

What a great birthday! I not only avoided the dreaded too-much-birthdays (for the most part), but I also had a killer party and got more presents than I ever thought I could get. Since so many of my presents correspond to items from my wishlist, I'm going to go through my list:

1. this golden bear bottle opener Didn't get it but didn't really want it that much to begin with.
2. Party Down on dvd YEP!
3. We Can Be Heroes on dvd I would've had to change the dvd zone on my computer again.
4. blank miniDV tapes I can get these anytime!
5. a Crayola Crayon Maker YEP MY BROTHER IS GREAT
6. Season 2 of Arrested Development on dvd (I lost mine) I saw a great deal on amazon and went full steam ahead!
7. Zeitoun by Dave Eggers YES
8. Mariokart for Wii all in good time
9. Clone High on dvd ditto above
10. a video about me from you Improbable
11. a poem about you from me Impossible
12. a little pup to just play with sometimes This would've been too much
13. Guitar Hero or Rock Band for Wii (I know this is a tall order; perhaps you and a group of friends were looking to go in on something together?) None of my friends are friends with each other
14. a ton more crayons Check, self-bought present from KMart yesterday
15. permanent parking spot in nyc for Gabe Kotter, camry extraordinaire I don't know if he would like it up here
16. canvases for painting I'm actually still pretty well-stocked from Katherine's present last year
17. interesting cookbooks Thanks Mom
18. a new sewing machine Maybe in another few years
19. itunes gift cards? Nah

Way to go, Becky!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You've really got it all!

13 September 2010

The Return Of Gossip Girl: Blair Waldorf's Princely Mix-Up

It seems like just last week that Gossip Girl went to Paris for the summer. What on earth was I doing for the past three months that made the time go by so quickly? Watching three versions of Top Chef, sure. Going to work e v e r y d a y, yes. Swimming in a pool, once or twice. Yet I remain stumped. Oh God, maybe 25 is one of those checkpoints where life starts going twice as fast as soon as you hit it. Oh no!

While I still have a brain, I'll use it to watch GG:
  • One of the first shots of the episode is Serena sketching things and people in Paris. YEAH RIGHT HA HA!
  • Both Blair and Lily openly discuss the fact that Serena will "go on a date with" anything that moves. It's inevitable - this will be the season where Blair finally joins the Lily/Eric Sisterhood!
  • Lily on parenting infants: "I'm glad that's not us. Imagine, starting all over again with diapers and bottles and spit-up." Oh, so she's going to get pregnant, duh.
  • Dan is looking exactly like Rufus these days. Is that what becoming a father does to you? How soon will Eric start to morph? That is, if he still considers Dan his big bro?
  • Nate describes his lost summer as though it's different from any of the rest of his life. "I never have to talk about anything or eat alone! And there are tons of girls!"
  • Lily! Knees together! Even in pants! I thought that was the UES's motto!
  • Three chinese food boxes does not a hoarder make, Vanessa. Did she get prissier in Haiti? I didn't think that would be possible, but I usually don't think Vanessa is possible.
  • Looking just like "It's Dick" from Rules of Attraction, Nate saunters into a restaurant and sits right next to some 35-year-old reading The House of Mirth. It certainly sounds like a match made in heaven. Later on we find out she's a stalker for real, but hey, she was already reading a book about "Lily Bart." C'mon.
  • Prince or no, it's still entirely possible that Serena hired him to keep good ol' Blair company.
  • "Spotted: B and S. Chic and cheerful up on Boulevard Haussmann. They dallied at department stores and stayed a while at Tally Weijl. Down on the Rue Ste. Honore, they courted couture at the Palais-Royale and found the perfect outfits to BA SH the competition. Then they headed to the Golden Triangle, where Montaigne meets Georges Cinq and luxury goods are the opiate of choice." Listening to that made Josh want to die.
  • Blair: "Those brown boots would look amazing on you. Brown! What did you want to tell me about Brown?" Brava, entire writing staff!
  • Georgina is on the phone with someone named Boris. Of couris!
  • Family Man Rufus says something like "your family, not ours" to his wife Lily. Whatta mighty mighty good man!
  • After Blair storms out of dinner, it's great that Serena's like, "Soooo, who wants a bite of her dessert?" But I mean, c'mon. Serena. More like "Soooo, who wants to chew up a bite of her dessert and then discreetly spit it out into the toilet later on?"
  • Hahaha, every single person tells Georgina that announcing the new baby (there's a new baby!) at the big Fashion's Night Out party is gauche. Every person. And Georgina's just standing there like "Yeah I know" like Andy from Little Britain. PS was the baby hanging out on a bench outside while Georgina was babylessly guzzling a mimosa and making her intro speech?
  • Look at Lily's face after she had to tell Rufus and Dan to leave the room full of company to discuss this whole business:
  • We heard about it all summer, and it just happened. Ya got pushed in a fountain, Serena!
  • Dan Humphrey's IQ allows him to write tons of hit plays about the homeless but will not allow him to consider taking a paternity test after Liar McPsycho tells him he gave her a baby? Now I get it! PS, he had a "scare" with Serena? Did we see that? How did Gossip Girl miss that story?
  • Somehow I was taken completely off guard when the prince lets the identity switch out of the bag. Two decades of tv-watching down the drain.
  • Vanessa leaves a message for Dan with Georgina, then tells Georgina she also left Dan a voicemail. Georgina: "You know me too well, friend[o]."
  • YES!!!! Georgina dumping the baby on Dan means we get to hang out with a baby and don't have to keep seeing Georgina! Three Men and a Baby, here we come! Possible new titles for Gossip Girl:
  1. Six Entitled Teens and a Baby
  2. Rufus Marner
  3. Baby's Day Uptown
  4. Silver Spoons
  5. The Infant Wears Prada
  6. Googoo Gaga
  • Blair is holding "Be" magazine. Because her nickname is "B."
  • Blair: "They say it's a broken heart." Josh: "Who's they?" Colin: "Gossip Girl."
  • HAHAHA the House of Mirth lady is named Juliet Sharp! That gives her at least a 4-week arc. What a name. PS, she has a tagging gun so she can put price tags back on her expensive clothes. What a brilliant investment, really.
  • I had a hard time understanding this Chuck-Blonde Lady montage. Did she remove the bullet herself? Do they have a sort of Trading Places relationship? (Jamie Lee Curtis's character's name is Ophelia? ?????? I never knew that.)
  • Chuck's new name is Henry Francis, if I heard right. Isn't that Betty Draper's new husband's name? We are all faking. We are all fakers. This is American tv for you.
What an episode. Fashion's Night Out was there, and Paris, and a baby was there, too! I've been thinking about how this season will probably unfold, and I have a few ideas:

Gossip Girl Season 4 Precap:
  • Blair's prince meets a pauper named Henry Francis and decides to switch places with him to see how the other half lives. This is how Chuck Bass regains an empire.
  • Turns out Georgina stole Dorota's baby. That feels miserable to type, even in jest.
  • Vanessa dresses stupidly for once.
  • Serena + Dan + a baby. This is how their own parents are still like 40, right? You copulate when you are 20, that is the law. Nothing can keep Rufus from having great-great grandchildren and still playing gigs at 80!
  • Uncle Jack comes back for Serena! He is allergic to babies, however. It's not too tense a storyline.
  • However, Chuck's mom isn't allergic to babies at all! She takes the baby and the gang has to band together to find it. Luckily, Chuck's mom is only trying to get all the friends in one place - the loft in Brooklyn of course - so they can have a party and all be friends again. What a great idea!

08 September 2010

Time For My Wishlist!

This year for my birthday (which is fast approaching), I would like to win:

1. this golden bear bottle opener
2. Party Down on dvd
3. We Can Be Heroes on dvd
4. blank miniDV tapes
5. a Crayola Crayon Maker
6. Season 2 of Arrested Development on dvd (I lost mine)
7. Zeitoun by Dave Eggers
8. Mariokart for Wii
9. Clone High on dvd
10. a video about me from you
11. a poem about you from me
12. a little pup to just play with sometimes
13. Guitar Hero or Rock Band for Wii (I know this is a tall order; perhaps you and a group of friends were looking to go in on something together?)
14. a ton more crayons
15. permanent parking spot in nyc for Gabe Kotter, camry extraordinaire
16. canvases for painting
17. interesting cookbooks
18. a new sewing machine
19. itunes gift cards?
20. I'll add more later but I figured that with only 5 days left, you'd probably need the wishlist ASAP!

02 September 2010

Bacon Watch '10 Gets Nuts

One night last week I wanted to make cookies but couldn't stand the thought of making regular cookies. Since I had bookmarked a recipe for Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies while surfing the web, my thought process was easy: "Remember seeing that bacon cookie recipe, Beck? Wasn't that sort of a kick?" "Definitely it was a kick. I'm just thinking bacon-in-a-cookie, are we turning into Elvis?" "Would that be such a bad thing?" "No, I'm just saying I don't know about this. How will it taste?" "Trust me, it will be awesome. And if it stinks, we'll never have to make it again." "Ok." (we hug) "You're the best!" "You are."

After that was decided, I threw our bacon package into the freezer so it could get very hard before I had to cut it up. The cookie recipe called for a standard set of ingredients (I had to substitute miniature chocolate chips for real ones because I used only ingredients that I already had in the house (!!!!!!)), and I added the cooked bacon at the end. The link to the recipe I found mentions something about candied bacon, which only made me think of John Candy and Canadian Bacon, so it made me lonesome for John Candy and then I was sad and didn't want to do it.

Please think of me as your intrepid Bacon Watch '10 guide, and not as some gross kid who's putting bacon into foods where it doesn't belong just for like, I don't know, attention or something. I am leading you into the wide world of pork-laced pastries. I am not gross.

Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies
Courtesy of ClosetCooking.blogspot.com
(Blue comments mine)

1/2 cup butter (softened, feel free to replace some with bacon grease)
1/2 cup brown sugar (packed)
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/8 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup dark chocolate chunks - I used mini chocolate chips but I think I'd try their suggestion if I could do it over
5 strips bacon - I only used four (diced small) (freeze before slicing)

1. Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl.
2. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract.
3. Mix the flour, baking soda and salt in another bowl.
4. Mix the dry ingredients into the wet.
5. Mix in the chocolate and the bacon.
6. Place the dough onto a cookie sheet one table spoon at a time.
7. Bake in a 350F preheated oven for 8-10 minutes. (Or longer, if your oven is like mine)

Addendum: These cookies came out just as I suspected: a little salty, a little crunchy, and a little delicious. I had some pretty high hopes for them, however, and I will say that they weren't met. My hopes were VERRRRRRY high, though. Very high. Also this could have to do with my sub-par oven and variations on the recipe. I'm not saying they weren't great. They were great! Just not what I would have expected out of a bacon cookie...I guess I thought it would be explosive.