Faux Cronuts: NAILED IT.

By now, most of you have heart about the new food fad called the ‘cronut’. In short, it’s a mix between a croissant and a donut. NYC-based chef Dominique Ansel is the man behind the craze, who developed 10 different receipes before perfecting the cronut that it is today. Having only been in production since May, the delicious dessert has become so increasingly popular that people have even slept at the steps of the bakery overnight to nab one of the only 300 cronuts they make each day.

While many report that it is in fact worth getting up early, waiting in line, and paying the $5 for a cronut, it still seems silly that anyone would spend so much of their precious sleep time for a pastry. But food fads (and any other fad, really) are like that. You hear about something amazing, it becomes viral, and the next thing you know, it’s all over the news, and you’ve heard about it so much that the only logical next step is to drink the kool-aid and go.

But for those who aren’t in spitting distance of Ansel’s bakery, there are many imitation recipes for you to try out a cronut at home. With the help of my baker friend Eva, we attempted to recreate this magical pastry, using the following recipe from the Los Angeles Times. Check out how we absolutely nailed our very first cronut attempt…

Recipe by “Home & Family” Chef Hayley Christopher

1 tube of any refrigerated crescent roll dough

cinnamon sugar (1 cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon cinnamon)

or just eye it like we did until it looks pretty

1 stick melted butter

4 cups vegetable oil (for frying)

  • Unwrap the dough and separate it into four square sections, fixing the perforations with fingers.

Easy enough. Also, this event happened in my kitchen, not baker Eva’s so we did the best we could with what we got. AKA my cutting board wasn’t big enough, AKA I don’t bake.

  • Brush three sections with melted butter and cinnamon sugar. Stack the dough squares with plain square on top.

Also didn’t have a brush so used a tablespoon. 

  • Roll it out then brush with melted butter and sprinkle cinnamon sugar mix on top. Fold the dough over and roll it out again.

Also slightly modified it by making two cronuts and did not roll them out enough. We are experts.

  • Cut circles with a biscuit cutter. Let the dough circles sit for 20 minutes.

We had a biscuit cutter. Decided we didn’t need it. Skipped to the 20 minute wait.

  • Partially bake the dough circles at 400 degrees for five minutes, until Cronuts puff up. Set them aside to cool.

And then realize you should probably clean your oven when it starts to get rulll smoky up in your kitchen.

To fry

  • Heat the vegetable oil to medium heat.

Read: put a disgusting amount of oil into a pan and prepare to be disgusted and never want to eat fried food ever again

  • Fry the Cronuts for 60 to 90 seconds, until golden brown. Place them on a paper towel to drain.

It may be disgusting, but it is cool to see the dough all friiiied up. SCIENCE.

  • While warm, roll Cronuts in cinnamon sugar mix.

Roll/sprinkle, whatever.

  • If desired, pipe in whipped cream. Enjoy!

NO. Don’t enjoy this yet. Next step that is not written is to cut open the cronut and discover it’s not fully cooked, only to put it back in the oven for another 10 or so minutes so it IS cook and pretend everything went smoothly. Then it will come out like this:

And you will have a project that turned out just like those Pinterest NAILED IT projects that you laugh at at 1am on a Friday night by yourself.  We discerned that we need to actually roll out the dough more when we were making the cinnamon sugar layers so the pre-cook in the oven before hitting the fry bucket actually you know, cooks it. But I mean, it was still edible and tasted okay. We just need Dominique Ansel to come to LA.

Style Watch: Future Queens Of Europe

This past spring, when some non-royal handed Duchess Catherine a teddy bear, she said “thank you, I’ll give it to my d…”.  As of July 22, 2013, Kate’s secret was out – we all filled in “daughter,” but apparently she was going to say “dog.” Yes, Middleton gave a stuffed animal from an adoring commoner to her pets.

I don’t want to be publicly on the record as saying I cared whether this baby would be a boy or a girl. I really don’t care, I promise. It’s just that little girls have such better outfits! Trust me – I have like 100 nephews (ok, 5) and 1 niece, and shopping for little boy clothes is just not that fun.

While we can’t start our wardrobe watch for a future British Queen, fortunately Europe is lousy with little princesses right now. Any of them would make a great match for little Prince George, provided they’re not too-too related. And ohmygoodness, look what they’re wearing!:

Infantas Leonor and Sofia, Spain

The princesses were big news in the Spanish tabloids when I studied in Madrid. With DNA from the ridiculously good-looking Felipe and Letizia, it’s no wonder these kids are adorable. Anyone who’s spent time in Spain knows that kids there are dressed beautifully, but even for Spain, this is good.

Like a walking Brooks Brothers children’s catalog.

Infanta Sofia wore this Nanos dress that her older sister sported on the family Christmas card a few years back. Royals – they’re just like the rest of us.

Princesses Catharina-Amalia, Ariane, and Alexia, The Netherlands

Royal blue dresses for their father’s coronation. Oh my goodness.

Can I get those matching blue/pink dresses in grownup size?

Best brunch outfits ever. That little plaid suit! I love over-the-top preppiness on little kids. Which means my future children will hate me by the time they’re 10 and go full-goth by the time they’re 15.

Princess Estelle, Sweden

This is Estelle on Sweden Day. I also love children in traditional national dress. Unfortunately, I’m from America, where our “traditional national dress” is, I think, yoga pants.

You might want to pop a few aspirin, because your ovaries are going to hurt from this picture. Out of the frame, there’s a blue flower applique on the skirt of that dress, but that just seemed like too much to do to all of you.

We all know that babies aren’t really sailors. And we don’t usually dress babies in other kinds of professional garb, like tiny mechanic jumpsuits or little power suits . But I’ll be darned if babies in sailor dresses aren’t the cutest thing ever.

Princess Ingrid Alexandra, Norway

See? National dress. Is it OK to dress your children like Madame Alexander dolls if you’re not royalty?

Rocking the white-on-white like a PRO. And I’m sorry, are those little brogues? Dead.

Second in line to the Norwegian throne, but already a fashion queen.

Princesses Elisabeth and Eleanore, Belgium

With all apologies to Zooey Deschanel, this is the best use of the Peter Pan collar I’ve seen in months.

Flawless pink trench coat.

So if the cut and color of these coronation dresses weren’t cute enough already…

THE FABRIC. Love.

And that’s how you wear a print.

Extra! Extra! Newspapers Go Pun Crazy Over Royal Baby!

Well, y’all – the baby the U.K. and most of the world has been waiting for is finally here. Prince George Alexander Louis appeared on the steps of St. Mary’s hospital, swaddled in the finest cloth, and held by his royal parents. And while I was grinning like an idiot watching Prince William carry the future king in a baby carrier and putting him in the car, news editors around the world were putting together their front covers and headlines for the #royalbaby. I’m assuming they’ve been thinking of these puns for a while now, which makes it even more embarrassing for those whose names are attached to the publications. Here are a few quality covers from newspaper around the world.

The Sun – London, England

The editors at The Sun have probably been waiting to use this pun headline for a realllly long time.

Daily Mail – London, England

Unlike The Sun, the Daily Mail didn’t give the impression that they’ve been planning a #royalbaby headline out for a long time. Also, is there a reason why Prince Charles is on the cover and not the couple that actually became parents? Like, does the “Prince Charles fandom” exclusively ready the Daily Mail?

Metro

Apparently the Metro couldn’t get rights to a pic of the couple with said ‘boy’, so they opted for a stock photo. And that ‘a prince, an heir, and a precious child’ line sounds like three different people. Also the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

Evening Times – Scotland

Sorry lady, but does anyone really care that you gave birth to a girl within minutes of Prince George? It’s kinda like how local news reporters find the first baby born into the new year and ambush the parents at the hospital. Does anyone besides that baby’s family care that they’re on the TV? No. Scotland doesn’t care that this couple had a baby either.

The Courier Mail – Queensland

Well played Courier Mail. You get second place in Traci’s pun contest 2013.

The New Zealand Herald

The New Zealand Herald, however, does not. It doesn’t even make sense. You tried.

New York Post

The New York Post always delivers an amusing cover, and they didn’t disappoint with this one. Who else would photoshop a crown and silver spoon on an unnamed white baby?

Boston Herald

Oh Boston Herald. What are you doing. A ‘King’ sized baby? Really? Was this child really sized like a king??

Philadelphia Daily News

Philly editors try to master the British slang, while also providing readers with ‘fun facts’ about the royal birth. Hey, maybe one of the ‘fun facts’ is ‘lady in Glasgow has a baby girl MINUTES after Kate!’

Calgary Sun

Again, this pun doesn’t work. Just because the word starts with a ‘H’, doesn’t make it a pun of ‘Heir’.

Red Eye – Chicago

Why the Philadelphia Daily News didn’t think of this first, we’ll never know.

Edmonton Sun

Edmonton didn’t even try.

Daily Telegraph – Sydney, Australia

File under: STILL DOESN’T WORK AS A PUN.

Toronto Sun

Toronto, you win. You win all the pun awards. Celebrate at Arizona’s B-Bar and Grill for me.

BONUS:

Manchester Evening News

Because, irony.

In full disclosure, this is a satirical newspaper. Don’t worry, no paper is that ridiculous.

ICYMI: Michael B. Jordan: Life Ruiner/Maker

We mean this in the best way possible, Michael B. Jordan. You’re the best, but you’re also the worst, because I can’t control my emotions when I watch you act. You’re so fucking good that it’s both astonishing and annoying that you haven’t won all the awards yet. All of them.

Kleenex Owes A Lot of Money to Michael B. Jordan

If you don’t know who the guy above is, you need to reevaluate your life choices (and also reference my HBM post from a while ago). Michael B. Jordan has been in a bunch of critically and fan acclaimed TV series and movies, but for some reason has never received the true recognition that he deserves. In fact, he’s been acting since he was 12 years old, and managed to be one of the few child actors who has not only been successful, but hasn’t gone down the Lindsay Lohan/Amanda Bynes route.

Michael has especially proven he’s at his best when it comes to dramas, pulling out performances that tug at your heartstrings to the point where you’ll cry until you’re out of tears and then you remember that one scene and you cry all over again. Of course, it’s a testament to the projects he chooses to do and the writing of said projects, but really, it takes a special kind of actor to make you weep uncontrollably. Here are a few of my favorite performances by MBJ that have made be question my sanity after shedding so many tears for fictional characters (save Fruitvale Station).

Fruitvale Station

If you see one movie this weekend, make sure it’s Fruitvale Station. No doubt this will break your heart into a million pieces, but now, more than ever, Americans everywhere need to see this film. Not to mention, if the above examples haven’t convinced you that Michael B. Jordan is one of the best actors of our generation (and deserves all the awards), then this will.

Based on a true story, Michael portrays Oscar Grant, a 22-year-old two time convicted felon, who’s turning his life around in hopes for a better future for his girlfriend in daughter. The movie mainly focuses on the day leading up to the moment he was fatally shot and killed by a BART (subway) officer in San Francisco who believed he was involved in a brawl that broke out on a packed train. And it was all caught on camera.

Thinking about it, Oscar is the adult version of Wallace (basically MBJ likes to play the same character evolved over time). Oscar is someone who’s had a rough past, and just when he tries to leave it all behind, injustice occurs. First-time director Ryan Coogler could have easily made Oscar seem like an ex-con who was killed and had it coming. But he and Michael decided to give Oscar Grant the legacy he deserves – the lasting impression that he was a good boyfriend, father, son. He humanizes Oscar so that viewers don’t even get a chance to think that he possibly could be in the wrong and “deserved” to get shot. Plain and simple: an innocent man was pulled off a train and shot by a transit officer who thought he reached for his taser and not his actual gun. And Michael plays it in such a way that makes your heart sink into your body the second you hear that gunshot. It’s as if that one sound was the sound of all his potential, everything that he could have been, a better boyfriend, a better father, a better son – all gone in an instant.

And I suppose this goes without saying, but make sure you bring some tissues with you. You’ll need them.

Alright enough with the crying – let’s get on with something we can all enjoy: hot guys. Correction: hot black guys.

HBM: It’s A Thing You Should Get With

Warning: This is a super girly post, so apologies in advance if this doesn’t appeal to you.

I’m a big fan of acronyms. Circa 2005, I was super into them, and would basically try to converse using only letters. I was dumb. However, they can be super helpful, and act as a secret code with friends if need be (Ask me about MSP some time).

When I was studying abroad in 2006, I remember my pal Caitlin telling me on a bus in London about her favorite HBMs. What is a HBM you say? It stands for Hot Black Man. Totes a way of objectifying sexy black guys, but whatever. I’m a fan, so deal. Here’s a list of my favorite HBMs, because this blog doesn’t have enough mindless eye candy on here. YOU’RE WELCOME.

Taye Diggs

Idina Menzel, you lucky bitch. Also, these pix of him and their kid. And this super HOT video from Private Practice where he makes out with Audra McDonald on a table (!)

Donald Glover

He’s funny. He’s a rapper. He’s half hipster. He’s a smokeshow. Also, he’s usually shirtless at his Childish Gambino shows. ‘Nuff said.

Reggie Bush

This was the photo used on the cover of Essence magazine, which I bought awkwardly at CVS in ’10. And just in case you forgot he went out with Kim Kardashian, here is the hottest couples photoshoot (besides the Beckhams) you will ever see.

Boris Kodjoe

Why isn’t Boris Kodjoe more popular??? The man even speaks four different languages, including Germany where he was born. Probs the only man who can make that language sexy.

Michael Ealy

Ever since Barbershop, I’ve been staring into those dreamy eyes ❤

Jesse Williams

Speaking of nice eyes, here’s the prettiest of them all. Before he was shirtless on Grey’s, he was shirtless on Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2, as the naked model Rory Gilmore had to draw in art class.

Idris Elba

You know what makes Idris Elba hot, besides his wicked sense of style and British accent? The fact that he’s a legit DJ. Really.

Tyson Chandler

I AM A CELTICS FAN. REPEAT: I AM A CELTICS FAN. But lawd help me if this Body Issue cover isn’t the hottest thing. Plus he seems like a really nice guy, so I mean, there’s that.

Lenny Kravitz

I’m just gonna leave this pic here, and you can go on from there.

Michael B Jordan

From Vince on Friday Night Lights to the boyfriend Haddie never deserved on Parenthood, he’s the best looking non basketball playing Michael Jordan there is.

Saturday Spotlight: Lists About Things

Although we can all agree that sometimes Buzzfeed takes it too far, the fact is that some things are best left in list form. For instance: things you need at the grocery store, items to add to your Netflix queue, ways that your arch-nemesis has wronged you, names of the Duggar children in case you run into them sometime, and these things we posted about this week:

———

We all love Jesse and The Rippers, and we owe a lot to Jimmy Fallon for spending his last baby-free week bringing us such a fantastic reunion. But do you remember these other great Full House musical performances?

Virtual Smash Club: Top Full House Musical Performances

If there were some sort of Make A Wish-style foundation that granted the dreams of 20- and 30-somethings, I’d put Jimmy Fallon in charge of it. After all, if you were born between about 1975 and 1992, that man has probably already found a way of making your dreams come true. First, there was his campaign for a Saved By The Bell Reunion. Last week, Fallon topped that – he staged a Jesse and the Rippers reunion. At the Smash Club. With Danny and Becky in attendance.

Actually, if we were creating an early ’90s Living History museum experience, I’d put Jimmy Fallon in charge of that, too.

Even if you didn’t go to Comic Con this year, you probably heard all about it on the internet or from that one nerdy guy from your job. But, Comic Con is pretty cool compared to these ridiculous conventions that actually exist:

The Wrath of Cons

As you may have heard, fanboys and girls from all over the world came to gather in San Diego  this past weekend for the annual Comic Convention, better known as Comic Con. For the citizens of Los Angeles, the days leading up to the event are filled with, “Are you going to Comic Con?” The exodus out of the city is on par with Coachella. Just trade in the music, drugs, and hipster outfits for comics, nerds, and a shit ton of people in a hot convention center.

While Comic Con has transformed from an exclusive comic book/graphic novel weekend to an all out nerd fest for TV and movies as well, the fan base and popularity have grown exponentially over the years. Which got me thinking – are there other ‘cons’ out there that we just don’t know about yet? Could there be a ‘con’ that will be the next exodus out of LA? And exactly how weird will the people be that are attending it? Here are a few I found that you never knew existed, and probably never want to come across in your life.

We are also listing 50 Missed Connection ads from each state – posted on The Fourth of July, because we’re American like that. This week we published part 2 of 2:

50 States, 50 Missed Connections (Part 2)

34) North Dakota

Stormtrooper – w4m – 23 (Watertown 4th of July parade)

I was sitting listlessly on the curb during the parade, the sun slowly roasting my skin, watching the tractors tractor by. Just another fourth of July in Codington County.

Until you walked by.

You were being mobbed by fans, mostly small children and their moms armed with iPhones. The heat was intense but you were cool as a cucumber, gamely posing for pictures with grubby suburbanite spawns and marching alongside a coterie of clowns. Unless they were juggalos. Your armor glinted in the sunlight, a smart white color that gave you a Messianic aura, saving me from the boredom of small-town festivities.

Eventually you made your way to my section of the crowd. Heart all a-flutter, I joined my aunt and her toddler in a photo op with you, my elbow brushing the smooth plastic of your uniform. “Thank you,” I whispered tremulously after the picture was taken, gazing deeply into your helmet. You said nothing and made no sign of even hearing me, but I know I made an impression.

  • We can all go home now. I’ve found our winner.

I’m almost ashamed to admit this, but let’s be real, I have no shame left anyway. All of these things are puns, though it took me years to figure it out:

10 Puns I Totally Missed At First

For someone with a penchant for Grandpa Humor, I sure am bad at recognizing it. A good, corny pun always makes me laugh (then immediately hate myself for laughing). So, you’d think that at least one of these puns would have registered with me — but no pun in ten did*:

Vita Coco

Does RiRi know about this?

Sometimes I drink coconut water after running because it’s supposed to do something to your electrolytes. Raise them, probably. However, it wasn’t until two years after I bought my first Vita Coco that I realized they were going for a “Vida Loca” reference. In my defense, Ricky Martin songs haven’t been a relevant cultural touchstone for 14 years.

10 Puns I Totally Missed At First

For someone with a penchant for Grandpa Humor, I sure am bad at recognizing it. A good, corny pun always makes me laugh (then immediately hate myself for laughing). So, you’d think that at least one of these puns would have registered with me — but no pun in ten did*:

Vita Coco

Does RiRi know about this?

Sometimes I drink coconut water after running because it’s supposed to do something to your electrolytes. Raise them, probably. However, it wasn’t until two years after I bought my first Vita Coco that I realized they were going for a “Vida Loca” reference. In my defense, Ricky Martin songs haven’t been a relevant cultural touchstone for 14 years.

Top Chef

I don’t watch this show. I like cooking and all, but watching food just makes me frustrated that I’m not eating it. That’s why Top Chef is in its 11th season and I’m just now realizing that it’s probably supposed to sound like an old jazz man saying “top shelf.”

Legally Blonde

This is neither here nor there, but this movie came out 12 years ago. TWELVE. A seventh grader ago.

Legally blind, legally bound. I have no excuse for this.

The Entire Deva Curls line

These are all such tortured puns that I don’t know if I missed them or if my brain refused to register them because they’re so bad. Like, Gossip Girl episode title-level bad:

  • Mirror Curls? It’s supposed to be Miracles (and the only miracle here is that such a terrible hair product is on the market. Don’t buy it.)
  • Arc AnGEL? Yeah. Archangel. Which has nothing to do with hair.
  • One Condition? Not exactly a pun, but just because there’s a phrase with the word “condition” in it doesn’t mean you need to name your hair conditioner after it.
  • B’Leave-in? Ugh. Stop.

Full House

Because there are a lot of people in that damn house, but also like in poker. I didn’t really start gambling until I was 11 or so, though, and Full House was long off the airwaves by then.

Boy Meets World

I literally JUST read that this was supposed to be a play on “Boy Meets Girl.” The reference slipped by me for 20 whole years, maybe because I don’t say the word “girl” like an eight-year-old with severe speech disorder**.

Diagon Alley and Knockturn Alley

I was on like the 4th book before I realized Diagon Alley = diagonally and Knockturn Alley = nocturnally. I’m ashamed to call myself a Ravenclaw. Not that I call myself a Ravenclaw, because I am a grown adult who never joined Pottermore. And also because with those thought processes, I wouldn’t even make Hufflepuff***.

Biggest Loser

Because big loser is a phrase. And also they’re losing weight. And also they’re big, to start with. And also this whole show makes me want to hurt somebody so you can’t really blame me for willfully ignoring the wordplay in the title.

Shanghai Noon

Okay. But the sequel “Shanghai Knight” still doesn’t mean anything.

High Noon? Get it? I didn’t, because I didn’t see this movie. Nobody did.

* Your grandpa thinks I’m funny.

** No judgment – some of my best friends are speech pathologists.

***No judgment – some of my best friends are Hufflepuffs.

Kleenex Owes Michael B. Jordan A Lot of Money

If you don’t know who the guy above is, you need to reevaluate your life choices (and also reference my HBM post from a while ago). Michael B. Jordan has been in a bunch of critically and fan acclaimed TV series and movies, but for some reason has never received the true recognition that he deserves. In fact, he’s been acting since he was 12 years old, and managed to be one of the few child actors who has not only been successful, but hasn’t gone down the Lindsay Lohan/Amanda Bynes route.

Michael has especially proven he’s at his best when it comes to dramas, pulling out performances that tug at your heartstrings to the point where you’ll cry until you’re out of tears and then you remember that one scene and you cry all over again. Of course, it’s a testament to the projects he chooses to do and the writing of said projects, but really, it takes a special kind of actor to make you weep uncontrollably. Here are a few of my favorite performances by MBJ that have made be question my sanity after shedding so many tears for fictional characters (save Fruitvale Station).

The Wire

I just started watching The Wire a few weeks ago, and unfortunately knew the outcome of Michael’s character, Wallace (obvs, spoiler alert). Michael was just 15 years old when played a smart kid who ended up on ‘the wrong side of the tracks’ in season one. Wallace spent his days as a drug dealer in the low-income projects in Baltimore, but you could tell he had a heart, especially when he was taking care of the younger kids in the community. He tried to leave the dangerous world behind and even gave the police details about the drug organization, but once the leaders found out about his snitching, they ordered Wallace’s friends to kill him. What’s so heartbreaking about this is not just the fact that he died, but that he had so much potential. Michael played him with so much hope, so much desire to want to be better, and the last few moments of his life live on much longer than his 12 short episodes on the series.

Friday Night Lights

Friday Night Lights was the program that introduced me to this gem of a man. Although Michael joined the cast for the last two seasons, he made a huge impact on the show when the characters’ (and fans’) loyalties switched from the Dillion Panthers to the East Dillon Lions. When Coach Taylor  moved from a school with literally the best football team in the state to a school with no football team at all, he had to scramble to put together a group of guys who not only could play the damn sport, but wanted to do it in the first place. Someone who kind of involuntarily became the star quarterback player was Michael’s character Vince Howard. He was at his last straw with the law, and in exchange for not locking him up in jail, he promised Coach he’d play for the Lions.  While Vince’s father was off in jail and his mom a drug addict, he had no real parental supervision or role models to look up to – until Coach came along. Eric Taylor may have been a father figure to a lot of his players, but none more so than to Vince. In this scene in the fifth season, Vince is feeling a lot of pressure to essentially, be an adult. Coach, with his infinite wisdom, helps him out.

Eric Taylor: I first met you, you were climbing out of a police car. People said you were a punk, you’d never last in the field. You know they still believe that?

Vince Howard: Screw them. I work hard for everything I’ve got!

Eric Taylor: I know you do and you ought to be damned proud about that. I am. I’m proud of you. Your teammates are proud of you. It’s about character. It’s about striving to be better than everybody else.

Vince Howard: Coach, my dad just got out of prison. He’s staying with me in my house… and I can’t stand him. My mom, she asked me to forgive him. To be ‘better’. And you’re asking me to be ‘better’. I don’t know how to be ‘better’ because he never taught me how! He never taught me how to be ‘better’! He’s not around!

Vince Howard: And I’m supposed to be ‘better’ than them? I’m supposed to be ‘better’?

Eric Taylor: Listen to me. I said you need to strive to better than everyone else. I didn’t say you needed to be better than everyone else. But you gotta try. That’s what character is. It’s in the try.

Parenthood

Because it’s hard to turn down Jason Katims and also because Jason Katims is one of the greatest TV writers ever, Michael had a fantastic arc on Parenthood as Alex, the troubled teen turned responsible adult who dated Haddie and her horrible hair. I like to think that in some weird Katims universe, Alex is just a grown up version of Vince Howard. Alex is a recovering alcoholic who emancipated himself from his parents when he was 16 (the age of Haddie when they start dating), but now runs a local homeless shelter. Naturally, Haddie’s parents aren’t too excited about Haddie dating a 19 year old who attends AA and has his own apartment, but they come to love him as much as Haddie loves him. Alas, their course as a couple ran out, and surprisingly, it wasn’t their breakup that brought tears to everyone’s eyes – it was his breakup with Haddie’s mom, Kristina (played by the Emmy-snubbed Monica Potter) that felt like we were simultaneously breaking up with him too.

Alex: I just want to say I’m sorry for bringing you guys into my mess. I really regret that, Mrs. Braverman. I really do. I know that when we first started dating I wasn’t exactly what you guys expected.

Kristina: We’ve gotten past all that stuff. You’re like our family.

Alex: I know you probably already know this but you’re a really good mom. I lost mine a  long time ago, and I feel really lucky to have gotten to know you, Mrs. Braverman.

Kristina: You’re a good kid, You’ve been through a lot. And we love you.

Alex: I love you guys too. Can you just tell your husband I said thank you for everything? Tell Max I said keep working on his jump shot, okay?

Fruitvale Station

If you see one movie this weekend, make sure it’s Fruitvale Station. No doubt this will break your heart into a million pieces, but now, more than ever, Americans everywhere need to see this film. Not to mention, if the above examples haven’t convinced you that Michael B. Jordan is one of the best actors of our generation (and deserves all the awards), then this will.

Based on a true story, Michael portrays Oscar Grant, a 22-year-old two time convicted felon, who’s turning his life around in hopes for a better future for his girlfriend in daughter. The movie mainly focuses on the day leading up to the moment he was fatally shot and killed by a BART (subway) officer in San Francisco who believed he was involved in a brawl that broke out on a packed train. And it was all caught on camera.

Thinking about it, Oscar is the adult version of Wallace (basically MBJ likes to play the same character evolved over time). Oscar is someone who’s had a rough past, and just when he tries to leave it all behind, injustice occurs. First-time director Ryan Coogler could have easily made Oscar seem like an ex-con who was killed and had it coming. But he and Michael decided to give Oscar Grant the legacy he deserves – the lasting impression that he was a good boyfriend, father, son. He humanizes Oscar so that viewers don’t even get a chance to think that he possibly could be in the wrong and “deserved” to get shot. Plain and simple: an innocent man was pulled off a train and shot by a transit officer who thought he reached for his taser and not his actual gun. And Michael plays it in such a way that makes your heart sink into your body the second you hear that gunshot. It’s as if that one sound was the sound of all his potential, everything that he could have been, a better boyfriend, a better father, a better son – all gone in an instant.

And I suppose this goes without saying, but make sure you bring some tissues with you. You’ll need them.

50 States, 50 Missed Connections (Part 2)

 We’re posting a July 4th Missed Connection ad from every state in our great nation, and a few weeks ago we brought you the first half of our cross-country Craigslist road trip. Let me tell you, it teaches you a lot about this America of ours. It’s like the 50 Nifty United States song in that sense, except with more strangers from the internet writing about their own boners.

Here are reasons 26-50 why, if America were a person, it would be single*:

26) Montana

does heaven get wifi? – m4w (helena)

We were friends for a few years.we watched eachother go through numerous bad relationships and talked eachother through tough times if we had anything in common it was bad luck .I always loved you and kept it to myself…then one December morning we parted ways but you didn’t make it home,I say hi every time I see your cross on the road,but a part of me has been so empty since that day.I don’t live in regret for not trying, I just miss you…and I love you

  • Oh shit this is the saddest missed connection ever. The title alone – it’s like a modern take on that song from Whatever Happened To Baby Jane. Let’s all use this guy as a reason to not let your Missed Connections stay missed. I mean he loved her for years! Kept it to himself! Didn’t think it was possible, but Montana just got a little bleaker.

27) North Carolina

Thurs afternoon at gym – m4m – 29 (Clt)

We sat in steam room briefly then I left to shower and you came shortly thereafter. Made eye contact a couple times, but that’s about it. You have a nice bod, prob in your 30s – I’m prob slightly younger and in good shape wm. If you want to grab a beer sometime, hmu. Tell me what gym and whats on your left arm, so I know it’s you.

  • You know what’s on MY left arm? A teardrop that rolled off of my face after that damn Montana Missed Connection.

28) New Hampshire

I’ll be your huckleberry – w4w (Newfields)

I always thought that I’d see you again You headed West as I went South
Just had weird feeling your up this way they do say Every Things bigger in texas

  • HUCKLEBERRY. This lady will take you a-raftin’ down the Ol’ Mississip’. I guess. This is so confusing – she feels like she’s in New Hampshire? Texas? West? South? – that I feel like it’s a clue in some sort of mystery.

29) Nebraska

Incredible Hulk – m4m – 45 (Max)

OMG! you were standing at the bar in Stosh’s Saloon/Arena. You are a tall, thick, bulky burly man. I walked up to you and just said a few words and walked into the main bar. What was on my shirt? What did I say? Hit me up. Would love to chat in a non bar scene.

  • I have a lot of business contacts in Nebraska, so I just picked one that’s almost definitely NOT one of the judges or law professors I roll with.

30) Nevada

cute blond at home depot henderson – m4w – 55 (mens bathroom)

hi you made a mistake and entered the mens bathroom i meet you just inside the door and pointed out your mistake you said excuse me i’m in the wrong place i said YOU MADE MY DAY you laughed flashed a great smile. i like a dope did not get your number can i have it now

  • Nope. Nope nope nope. Never giving my number to a man I meet when I accidentally walk into a men’s room.

31) New Jersey

went to dentist – concordia to ? – m4m – 40 (monroe)

i drove you to dentist cause you lost your License. It was a while back. You are tall older straight guy but very sexy and you like sex but having trouble finding willing girl. If a guys mouth and/or ass will do I’d love to help you pop a load. I picked you up in your developement you walk to front entrance. if this is you, where did we stop before going to dentist and where was dentist office? If I am right your initials are SD!

  • Putting the “dirty” in Dirty Fucking Jersey.

32) New Mexico

fiestas – m4w (montgomert and carlisle)

To the girl at the front desk:

I just want you to know you are super cute. I wish i had the guts to talk to you. When I walked away i realized how stupid i sounded askin u if u were bored, but i didnt know how to even start to talk to you.

If your confused i was the biker wearing all black clothes, vest with patches, and i black flat bill hat.

I hope u get this!

33) New York

Its me your wife 53 – w4m – 53 (male 50 Greece new york)

I am you’re wife , we got married in 2009 , I want you to know I still love you , we both made mistakes , its are first july 4th without each other , why didn’t we just go get are own place , I miss you , I dont trust you thou , please dont stand so close to me I have trouble breathing I am afraid of what you will see all my broken heartbeats , I let you go so easy , because I wanted you to be happy , had I been there none of this would have happened ! You made it so hard and difficult, I wanted you to get help , that’s all I am going to say , not sure why you have not filed for are divorce , I don’t blame her ! Kind of hard for me to move on and date when you’re still my husband be happy , you will always be in my heart , I am not sure why you could not help me out when i needed it ! Most husbands do that , you did it for you’re last wife until she passed , you hate me not sure why . I am moving , in new York state its uncontested , so you wont need my signature .. if you have not done the paperwork I am going to file once I am on my feet , take care and be good , what hurts the most is we both has a agreement if we crossed the lines we could never go back . we both crossed those lines i sure wish you had come and got me in may .out there , one last time I wanted you to get help you were not emotionally available for me 😦

  • I had hoped this would be like The Pina Colada Song – which, by the way, when you really listen to it is the most depressing song ever. But, no. I think by the time you’ve put a ring on it, the connection was actually made.

34) North Dakota

Stormtrooper – w4m – 23 (Watertown 4th of July parade)

I was sitting listlessly on the curb during the parade, the sun slowly roasting my skin, watching the tractors tractor by. Just another fourth of July in Codington County.

Until you walked by.

You were being mobbed by fans, mostly small children and their moms armed with iPhones. The heat was intense but you were cool as a cucumber, gamely posing for pictures with grubby suburbanite spawns and marching alongside a coterie of clowns. Unless they were juggalos. Your armor glinted in the sunlight, a smart white color that gave you a Messianic aura, saving me from the boredom of small-town festivities.

Eventually you made your way to my section of the crowd. Heart all a-flutter, I joined my aunt and her toddler in a photo op with you, my elbow brushing the smooth plastic of your uniform. “Thank you,” I whispered tremulously after the picture was taken, gazing deeply into your helmet. You said nothing and made no sign of even hearing me, but I know I made an impression.

  • We can all go home now. I’ve found our winner.

35) Ohio

Giant Eagle Solon – m4w – 50

About 2 pm or so today. You 45-50 blonde flower big purse looked like you were buying everything for the cookout. Stated how crowded it was.. I was behind you in line . Your very pretty and so sensual and married! Wanted to chat but feared rejection. Just wanted to say.

  • “So sensual and married!” Is something a gentleman should probably only say about his wife.

36) Oklahoma

plaid shorts – m4m – 53 (okc)

I watched you walking around tonight. You looked really hot in your plaid shorts and white tee shirt.
You seemed to notice me but I think you think I am not into you but I really am. You are hot and looked especially good tonight.

  • Plaid shorts are many things. Casual, golf-appropriate, seasonal. In Oklahoma, at least, you can add “really hot” to the list.

37) Oregon

yer hot! – w4w (Darimart River Road)

Kinda weird posting this, but giving it a shot….blonde K at driveup window at Darimart Thursday Thursday morning the 4th….you family? Single? Wanna go out sometime? Pooch loved the cookie. I liked yer smile. 65 WAS a very good year. 🙂

  • It’s like if an old-timey prospector from a cartoon wrote a Craigslist ad.

38) Pennsylvania

Fourth of July Comcast technician – m4m – 51 (hawrhorne and cc)

you came in around 9am to replace my cable modem. I thought you were very attractive. I kept checking you out behind your back. (I know, creepy.)

  • There’s a map for this one, and I lived literally a 20 second walk from this guy. And the only thing Comcast repairmen inspired in me was frustration and despair.

39) Rhode Island

Sitting outside the Stable Wednesday – m4m – 45 (Back patio)

You were there with friends… had grey wife beater showing amazing hairy chest, and beige pants. Your friends kept feeling you up, and you were adjusting yourself when you were leaving. I kept staring at you because I find you so totally sexy and handsome… anyway, if you read this and know who I am… and are interested, let me know

  • I guess this is because I’m not a man for a man, but when I see a guy adjusting himself I think “Jeez, learn how to conduct yourself in public!” and assume that he probably also chews with his mouth open and tells people how much his house cost. Just because you were “sitting outside the stable” doesn’t mean you were raised in a barn.

40) South Carolina

Surfer Girl – m4w – 40 (West Ashley)

I met you today around 0630 on your way to surf.
Amazing young woman…. wanted to tell you that it was nice to meet you….

41) South Dakota

French Creek Guide – m4w (Brookings)

Hard to believe it has been 22 years since we hiked French Creek. Still harder to believe it has been three years since we last spoke. Not once in all that time have I ever stopped loving you.

42) Tennessee

You punched my nutz! – m4w (Nashville)

I was walking downtown Nashville minding my own business when you came up out of nowhere and punched me in the nutz. When my head cleared and I got up off the ground there you were like an angel then you punched me in the nutz again. You told me to give you my wallet so I did because I knew that you would be able to find me again and then we could pursue this romantic tryst in earnest.

I don’t normally go for nut punching without first knowing someone but I could tell this was something special like love at first punch if you know what I mean. Anyway you know where I live so what’s up. Oh and hey could I have my cell phone back too I kinda need it. And by the way my name is not Justin Otherjon and although you do look familiar I never played spank the monkey with you tied you up gave you my banana and then left. I don’t even own a banana. Call me oh wait you can’t. Come see me I think I could fall madly in bed with you. I’ve been a bad boy. Spank me! Or punch me. In the nutz.

  • I don’t know. Maybe a dare to use the word nutz a lot. Maybe.

43) Texas

Costume party: The Park at the Domain – m4w (The Domain)

Tue night. As I left I asked, “Can I get behind you.” and I wish I had at least gotten your name. You were wearing a red corset and had an amazing body. You were very friendly and funny and I wanted to talk with you but I had just ridden 15 miles and was feeling ripe.

If you see this contact me, I want to come to your next costume party.

  • Well that’s a pickup line.

44) Utah

4 the july…party…im ready and u? – m4m – 33 (downtown)

Hey I’m good loking guy…I wanna hqve same fun with bi guy an curius guy …party with my frien tina…so guy letm know asap.

  • First of all, I almost forgot that not everyone in Utah is Mormon. Second, I’m assuming that tina is the street name of some kind of drug.

45) Vermont

Starbucks – m4m – 30 (Williston )

Sitting alone studying at around 6pm on July 4th. I think you had on green shorts. I looked at you a bunch of times but not sure if you caught me or not. Let me know if you think this might be you.

  • Studying on July 4? I’m going to say bar exam. So, I’ll repeat my advice from last time around – just do whatever it is you think you have to do.

46) Virginia

I am a 31 year old single mother of 2. This is my first time posting an ad, but I’ve been trying to find a nice female that I can hang out with. I find myself looking at women with Nice BOOBIES and BUTTS. Is it crazy to feel like this?? The older I get, the more curious I am about being with a woman. I would love to get to know you, and I wish I could post a picture, but there are so many fakes and men on here, so please reply. I look forward to hearing from you.

  • No, what’s crazy is you’re 31 years old and can’t figure out how to post in the correct section of Craigslist.

47) Washington

I miss you SJW – w4m (North Spokane)

I still don’t get what happened, you were perfect in my eyes… I’ll be waiting for you.

  • I hope everyone out there realizes that when someone says “perfect in my eyes” they mean “okay, but not actually perfect.”

48) West Virginia

Looking for girl to text nude pics – m4w – 17 (Charleston wv,)

I am looking for almost any age young or oldish…, but please no one over 45 email me your number…

  • He says he has email, so he has the internet, so can’t he find naked people there? Also this kid is 17, so all you West Virginian Mountain Mamas should know that this is just a trap to get you to make inappropriate sexual contact with a minor.

49) Wisconsin

Harley summer fest – m4w (Milwaukee)

Your name is Harley and you were very pretty and easy to talk to. I was happy to have the chance to talk to and share some chicken strips and fries. In till your friend ran over and stole you away from me

  • Based on the name and meal choice I think this man’s missed connection is seven years old.

50) Wyoming

You still make me nervous lol – m4w – 27 (Cheyenne Wyoming)

we met over a year ago on plenty of fish.com and then went on a few dates. i saw you today where i work and i got way nervous and walked away. if you do see this. tell me your name it starts with a K. and my name starts with a G.

  • He writes lol but I don’t think he’s really laughing out loud.

*(Canada is married with kids; France has a mistress)

The Wrath of Cons

As you may have heard, fanboys and girls from all over the world came to gather in San Diego  this past weekend for the annual Comic Convention, better known as Comic Con. For the citizens of Los Angeles, the days leading up to the event are filled with, “Are you going to Comic Con?” The exodus out of the city is on par with Coachella. Just trade in the music, drugs, and hipster outfits for comics, nerds, and a shit ton of people in a hot convention center.

While Comic Con has transformed from an exclusive comic book/graphic novel weekend to an all out nerd fest for TV and movies as well, the fan base and popularity have grown exponentially over the years. Which got me thinking – are there other ‘cons’ out there that we just don’t know about yet? Could there be a ‘con’ that will be the next exodus out of LA? And exactly how weird will the people be that are attending it? Here are a few I found that you never knew existed, and probably never want to come across in your life.

Celebrity Impersonators Convention

Ever wanted to meet your favorite celebrities? Then don’t go here, because this convention is full of wannabes who lure you into thinking they’re the real deal. But I mean if you don’t mind taking a pic with someone who looks a lot like Cher and have friends who won’t be able to tell the difference, then this place is for you. Going strong for 12 years, the weekend-long convention is filled with talent shows, celeb mingling and even classes on how to be an expert impersonator.

Sexpo

Screen shot 2013-07-22 at 10.58.51 PM

Ron Jeremy & friends, because, porn.

If you were wondering, Australia is the place to be if you want to get in touch with your sexuality and hang out with a bunch of people who feel the same way. Sexpo (Sexuality and Adult Lifestyle Exhibition) is the world’s largest adult show, featuring the finest adult performers, meet and greets with porn stars, and vendors who sell the best sex toys in all the land. Don’t worry guys, Sexpo is actually in Brisbane this weekend, so you still have time to grab some tickets!

 Sideshow Convention

You know, I just realized how dangerous this research could be. From a Sexpo to freaks at a Sideshow convention, even the NSA is going to be like WTF is wrong with this girl? All for the sake of the internet. You’re welcome. The annual Inkin the Valley and Sideshow Convention is held in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania and the foremost convention to see your favorite part of going to carnivals all in one convenient place.

Twins Day Festival

this photo is such a mindfuck

Fun fact: My mother is a twin, which means a) I’ve never been one of those people who think twins are ‘so cool’ or fawn over them, since it was such a normal thing for me. b) I could possibly have twins if I ever have kids. Yikes. Anyways, remember that episode of Full House where Nicky and Alex attend a twin convention to compete in a twin contest and the whole fam ends up going? And Stephanie meets a cute boy – and his twin brother – so she pretends to be her own twin too AND OMG IT’S LIKE  AN EARLY ORPHAN BLACK. So that convention is a real thing, appropriately held in Twinsburg, Ohio every year. More than 3,000 sets of siblings (including, but not limited to twins, triplets, quadruplets, etc.) come from all over the world to wear the same clothes and marvel in human genetics. Good news for you twinnies out there – this year’s fest is August 2nd-4th!

 Alcon

Listen, I’m not one to shit on people’s fandoms. Clearly. There have been Star Wars conventions, Twilight Saga, Simpsons, etc. But this one is the most head-scratching of them all – Weird Al Yankovic fan conventions, affectionately called, Alcon. It’s not really clear if there’s been one in the past few years, but there definitely has been at least one, which is one too many. At Alcon, fans can bid on unique Weird Al memorabilia, enter in a lip-synching contest, and you know, just revel in the parody master himself.

ROFLcon is the first internet culture conference in existence. Basically if you don’t even know what ROFL means, you’re too out of the loop to even attend this event. The convention is a place where people can dress up like there favorite memes, and talk about it endlessly. Guest speakers have included the no-names behind the sites xkcd and 4chan, so again, if you don’t know what that is, don’t bother showing your face here, ya newb. lulz.

Unlike most of these conventions, Zebra Con isn’t what it sounds like. This convention originated as a Starsky and Hutch fan gathering, naming the event after the Zebra 3 call sign on the TV duo’s car. Over the years, it’s transformed into a cop/spy/sci-fi convention, and a lot of “slash” fan fiction. I only recently found out what “slash” really means, which is fan work where two characters of the same sex are placed in sexual or romantic situations with each other. Like so: (caution: may be jarring for Star Trek fans. Or not). Sadly, Zebra Con ended in 2007, after more than 30 years in business.

Ohio Valley Filk Fest

This is the strangest, and most niche festival of all the cons listed here, as it’s a folk music convention, specifically with internet, sci-fi or fantasy themes. The weekend consists of workshops, songwriting competitions, and open-filking which is not a farm term or sex act. BTW that video above gave me so much second hand embarrassment that I couldn’t get through the first 30 seconds. Someone let me know how it is.

Anthrocon

dear lord this is horrifying

It only gets even weird from here, folks. Anthrocon is the world’s largest furry convention. ‘Furries’ are fictional animal characters and all these people find extreme pleasure in dressing up like them. Naturally. The annual event attracts around thousands each year, who come to scare all the children in Pittsburgh for the weekend (there’s some freaks up in Pennsylvania). This year’s event earlier this month, gathered 5,577 furries, and raked in $6.2 million!!! THAT’S A LOT OF FUR MONEY! The good news is is that the money goes towards animal charities, so I guess that’s a good thing? BTW, the theme this year was called, “The Fast and the Furrious.” Still creepy. A little funny, but still creepy.

BronyCon

We briefly talked about Bronies in the past, but it’s so much more than adults dressing up like My Little Pony Characters. BronyCon is fairly new to the convention circuit, having only been in operation since 2011. But the brony fandom (bro+pony=brony) is super into the kids’ cartoon, dressing up like the ponies, drawing fan art, creating fan fiction, etc. And most of them are 18 to 35 year old males. So, that’s cool. At least they can all hang together at BronyCon.

Mer-Palooza

Screen shot 2013-07-23 at 12.02.23 AM

I already love this one because I love a good ‘palooza’. This one in particular is for mermaids, and I always liked Ariel and her dinglehopper. Basically women (and men, I guess), from around the world swim to the port of Tampa, Florida to hang out and flip about. Listen, if Ariel can score a smokeshow like Price Eric with her fins, I’m willing to pretend to be a sea-human creature, too.

Virtual Smash Club: Top Full House Musical Performances

If there were some sort of Make A Wish-style foundation that granted the dreams of 20- and 30-somethings, I’d put Jimmy Fallon in charge of it. After all, if you were born between about 1975 and 1992, that man has probably already found a way of making your dreams come true. First, there was his campaign for a Saved By The Bell Reunion. Last week, Fallon topped that — he staged a Jesse and the Rippers reunion. At the Smash Club. With Danny and Becky in attendance.

Actually, if we were creating an early ’90s Living History museum experience, I’d put Jimmy Fallon in charge of that, too.

Jesse and the Rippers were just part of the Full House musical menu. For such an (admittedly) medicocre family sitcom, Full House was very music-heavy. Here are a few of the best:

Forever

My high school used to hold a vote for prom song. One year, a bunch of people voted for Forever as a joke. It won. Truly, nothing says “young love” better than the song Jesse wrote for his favorite Nebraskan tv journalist.

 Teddy Bear

When I re-watched this video, I thought it was a little over-the-top that Michelle got sent to bed by three men singing in harmony. Then, I remembered that when I was that age, I went through a phase when I couldn’t sleep if I thought the rest of my family was awake. My mom had everyone create a decoy bedtime – pajamas, prayers, everything. So, that’s probably worse. By the way, I didn’t find out about this until years later and I felt filthy that everybody was working together to trick me. It’s probably why I hate surprise parties.

The Sign

When I think of The Sign, I don’t even think of the Ace of Base version. I think of Stephanie, Gibbler, and that brazen hussy Gia totally butchering the pop song at a talent show, teaching us all a valuable lesson about the importance of practice. By the way, mashup artist Girl Talk named himself after this very band.*

Motown Philly

We never really heard about Stephanie’s dance classes. They never mentioned that someone had to drive her to a dance competition. You never saw her practicing or anything. But all of a sudden, there was a massive plot point that Stephanie was some kind of semi-professional child hip-hop dancer. She was up for a master class or camp or whatever good dance kids go to. I’m picturing something like Bela Karolyi’s gymnastics training center, but for dance and in San Francisco. Or, like Abbey Lee maybe. The point is, Stephanie pretended she didn’t know how to dance because she was scared of success. Funny, because “imposter syndrome” didn’t set in for me until I graduated law school – but then, Tanner was advanced. However, once she decided to sell the Motown Philly routine, that shit was sold.

Don’t Go Breaking My Heart

Whenever the Full House writers didn’t know where to go with the plot, they were like “okay, let’s just do a talent show, I guess?” These were Michelle’s friends, Derek and Lisa, who we wrote about in Where Are They Now: Minor Full House Characters. Did you know that after this episode, Elton John and Kiki Dee wrote a letter to the kid who played Derek, commending him on his performance — but snubbed Lisa?**

That stupid lollypop song

I’ve never watched a telethon on purpose. Nobody has. However, I’m pretty sure even for a telethon, this is bad. Somehow, the Tanners had to take the whole thing over. TV viewers were treated to Joey’s “comedy,” Steph’s hip hop dance stylings, and this – a teenage girl singing about buying candy. As a child, it made me want one of those giant Shirley Temple-style lollypops really bad. As an adult, it makes me cringe for Candace Cameron’s misspent teen years.

All those times The Beach Boys showed up

Inexplicably, the Tanners were friends with The Beach Boys. Every once in a while Brian Wilson would show up at that short-lived basement recording studio they had, or on the family’s Hawaiian vacation. I think the sister-dads were supposed to be superfans or something.

Oh, also, Little Richard was Jess Meriwether’s Denise’s uncle, because why not? Full House had given up on realism back when super-dedicated Motown Philly Steph became a girl who wouldn’t even practice her guitar for The Sign.

* That’s probably not very true.

** This is also, technically, untrue.