Best of C+S 2013: Liveblogging SHARKNADO!

Well, here it is folks. The very last day of our Best of series. Thanks again for sticking with us on our very first year of blogging! And in the event you forgot about this groundbreaking movie that premiered over the summer, we’re here to bring it back to life. There is going to be a sequel, after all. 

We can’t say it enough, but again, thank you for reading, and here’s to a fantastic 2014!

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Live Blog: SHARKNADO!

{originally posted july 15th}

Sharknado_poster

I want to apologize if it looked like I was yelling at you in the title, but I really see no other way to type SHARKNADO other than in all caps.

Alright, you may have heard about this so bad it’s good (or so bad it’s bad) movie that debuted on the SyFy channel last week. Nearly 1.4 million people tuned in to find out what kind of havoc SHARKNADO can possibly create. So many people were talking about it on Twitter (which is why it inspired me to do this very post) that it generated more tweets than that controversial *NO SPOILERS* Red Wedding episode of Game of Thrones a few weeks ago. AND there’s also talk about a sequel. What next, SHARKSUNAMI? I didn’t really know much about the movie before previewing approx 10 minutes of it, but I gathered that by the title alone, (and the poster) it was about a tornado full of sharks. I was right.

Does anyone remember Sharktopus that was on SyFy a few years ago? (Again, it’s exactly what it sounds like) I figured that SHARKNADO was in the same vein, so basically ridiculousness at its finest. Fun fact: the lead character that is not Eric Roberts went to my college and we had a marketing class together. If I had known he was going to be in Sharktopus… I still wouldn’t have talked to him. Alright folks, here we go! And obviously, spoiler alert.

  • The movie starts off literally with a tornado of sharks over the ocean. like the tagline says, “Enough said.”
  • Apparently we’re getting a brief preface before the “real” action happens. 20 miles off Mexico in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, there is hardass Captain who has caught a bunch of sharks and cut off their fins. He’s trying to sell them off to an Asian man who is going to use them for shark fin soup. Contrary to the fact that I am Asian, I honestly would never have known that this is a thing that a lot of Chinese restaurants sell. Like they literally cut off the shark fins, let the sharks die, and then stick the fins in some soup. Why do I know this? Because Kyle Chandler was on Ellen talking about how his daughter is on a crusade to stop Chinese restaurants in Texas from selling said soup. Coach is still teaching us life lessons, y’all. But is this supposed to be like a subliminal message telling us shark finning is bad? Is this movie sponsored by Oceana? Because it’s working.
  • Legitimate question – are there really this many sharks off the coast of Mexico? Why is there a dense population of sharks there? Because if so, remind me to never go there while out on my shark finning scuba diving crusades.

  • The hardass Captain in the middle of the stormy ocean gets enveloped by the SHARKNADO, then immediately cuts to a sunny shot of the Santa Monica pier and Tara Reid’s name in the credits. THE MOST JARRING SCENE CHANGE EVER.
  • Also, this takes place in Los Angeles?!? GREAT. Good thing I live far enough away from the water to immediately get attacked by sharks. And Ian Ziering.

  • Speaking of Ian Ziering, he owns a bar right at the end of the Santa Monica pier called Fin, and the locals are watching the news, where they report that a storm’s a brewin and its name is Hurricane David…. And the guy at the bar who just grabbed the butt of the ‘sexy’ waitress looks oddly familiar. OH IT’S BECAUSE HE’S THE DAD FROM HOME ALONE. And unfortunately, the creepy guy character actually suits him.

  • Meanwhile, Ian is out surfing when the girl he’s flirting with suddenly gets eaten by a shark. He’s legit yelling, “SHARKS, GET OUT OF THE WATER! SHARKS!” to everyone on the beach yet no one is listening to him. These bitches are being eaten left and right. You really should’ve listened to Steve Sanders when you had the chance.
  • HOLD UP. IAN ZIERING’S NAME IN THIS MOVIE IS FIN? HAHAHAHAHAHA

  • The TV reporter says, “Global warming is DEFINITELY the cause of this event.” Again, is there an underlying message here SyFy? They’re all, “Yes, save the sharks but also, remember that global warming is really a thing.” Is Al Gore the secret exec producer on this?
  • And Tara Reid makes her first appearance. God, I don’t think I’ve seen her in anything since Josie and the Pussycats. Nope, I’ve seen American Reunion. Let’s just say Josie and the Pussycats because what a gem of a movie that is.
  • A huge wave engulfs the Santa Monica pier and suddenly the ‘sexy’ waitress, whose name is NOVA has a gun. Like one of those big guns that’s bigger than a rifle. I’m not a gun affeciando, so trust on this. But where did she find a gun on the pier?? The only thing you would find washed up on the pier frreal would be caricatures of tourists from Wisconsin and maybe that huge snake that one homeless guy lets people pet for free.
  • Oh great the ferris wheel detached from the pier and is rolling directly down the road, because if sharks flying through the air weren’t enough, here’s a ton of metal about to land on your person.
  • Ian/Steve/Fin, along with Grabby Mr. McAllister, Nova, and Fin’s Australian BFF (who was bit by a shark earlier but managed to survive), get in his Jeep wrangler and head for Beverly Hills so Fin can check on his ex-wife and daughter. However it’s now raining and the water falling on this car is so incredibly fake that it looks like they’re going through a $1 car wash.

  • They decide to take the 405, but there’s traffic. Surprise surprise. It’s even worse when there’s a sea of sharks on the freeway. SHARKMAGEDDON, AMIRITE L.A.??

  • Grabby McAllister is clearly wasted because he spends his days at Fin’s bar, so when they reach a point on the 405 where they can’t go any farther and can see a wave of sharks is about to come at them, Fin tries to help the stranded drivers run to safety (?). However Grabby McAllister mumbles, “There are sharks out there. You don’t have to go out there. There’s no reason to go out there!” And suddenly he’s the only person that makes sense.
  • Ok so Nova has a gun, but Grabby McAllister had to bring his beloved stool from the bar and use it as a weapon?? He helps a woman whose dog is trapped in her car (which doesn’t make sense, because why would she lock her dog in the car without taking her keys) by shattering the glass with his bar stool. Woman and her beloved dog make it out, but Grabs McAllister doesn’t have the same luck – a shark comes flying at him and another one bites the dust.
  • Another question – Fin and the gang see a huge wave come over the freeway, but somehow, the water isn’t going down the ramp they’re on. This doesn’t make sense. I know I’m trying to find logic in a movie called SHARKNADO, but still!
  • They finally make it to Tara Reid’s house in BH, but she won’t let them in because she doesn’t believe that sharks are taking over the city. All of a sudden, a shark shoots up through a sewer and Nova just shoots it like a clay pigeon. Tara Reid finally believes their warning.

  • Good lord the acting on this… is … incomparable. The only thing worse is the writing. And the CGI. And Tara Reid’s face.

this is my ‘concerned for our lives bc sharks are flying from the sky’ face

  • Water floods into Tara Reid’s house and into the foyer, leaving the gang plus Tara and Fin’s daughter stuck on the stairs. Oh, Tara had an asshole boyfriend who Fin tried to help but got eaten by a shark circling the foyer waters.
  • They decide they need to go get their son, Matt, who is in flight school in Van Nuys, which is in the valley near me, where obviously the sharks can’t reach us. And is there really a flight school in Van Nuys?
  • Explain to me how their entire foyer became a pool of bloody water but they all escaped without letting any water out or being covered in bloody water. And also explain how their entire home just fell to bits, but the house next to it looks fine.
  • Just remembered that Nova has a scar on her upper leg, which makes me think she’s been in a similar shark situation before, and will probably come up later in the movie in some fascinating revelation.
  • Tara Reid just picked up her purse and told Siri to call Matt. HOW DO YOU HAVE YOUR PURSE ON YOUR PERSON RIGHT NOW.
  • On their way to Van Nuys, they see a school bus, and Fin wants to stop and see if they need help. But Tara exclaims, “You care more about other people than you do your family!” AH HA! A protagonist flaw that will most likely be resolved by the end of the movie!
  • “The water’s rising, I’m gonna go up to the bridge and repel down.” – Fin. Again, How do you have these random tools handy?? Fin’s response: “Semper Paratus” which means “Always Prepared” in Latin. Uh okay. But luckily he manages to save a bus full of 20 kids by repelling each of them up by a pulley system, including the bus driver who is clearly over this shit because he tells Fin he moved to L.A. to become an actor, and he did not see this the way his life would end.
  • The wind from the hurricane has caused the Hollywood sign letters to fly off the mountain and are heading directly towards them. Yeah, the bus driver/actor is def going to die by these letters. “My mom always told me Hollywood would kill me.” – Bus driver’s last words before a huge chunk of metal, presumably an O, pretty much slices him in half. Again, sharks aren’t the only thing that can kill you during a SHARKNADO.

  • A overhead shot flies over downtown Los Angeles, and you can randomly see sharks flipping about on helicopter pads on roofs. Foreshadowing?
  • Annndd their car blew up from all the flooding, or maybe it was the shark that literally blew through the roof of their car (see, foreshadowing!) but Nova killed it off with her gun.
  • They finally reach Van Nuys where Matt’s flight school is, and also conveniently located next to a movie prop warehouse specializing in cars. Naturally, they steal a Hummer. A Hummer with a “Nitrous” button. Is that even a real thing?
  • The gang finds Matt who looks extremely familiar yet again. And I realize that I recognize him as jock Van Dyke on the short-lived Jonas show on the Disney Channel. I would be embarassed by this but I have no shame. Incidentally, he was also in the new version of 90210 as well as American Reunion.

Jonas wasn’t a period piece.

  • The SHARKNADO comes to Van Nuys (!) and they hide in a mini bunker, but there’s no real door so Fin has to hold a scrap piece of metal to protect them… I find it hard to believe they would survive high winds like that, when Matt’s flight school teacher legit just got sucked up through the ceiling of the hanger and into the SHARKNADO.
  • They find a helicopter outside that was definitely not there before, and there are too many people for them to all get out of the city via chopper, not to mention the fact that it’s probably not ideal to fly during tornado/hurricane conditions. So Fin says, “We’re gonna stand and fight!”
  • Van Nuys just happens to have everything they need, because they find a surplus store with chainsaws and tools to make bombs…With chainsaws and bombs apparently.
  • The surplus store is where everyone’s feelings and emotions come out, because Fin and his daughter have a forced touching moment between each other that makes me yearn for the corny Danny Tanner talks with his girls.
  • Nova is finally revealing the story behind the mysterious scar to Matt. Like expected,  she tells some sob story about how when she was a kid, she went out in the water with her grandfather when she was attacked on the leg, but her grandfather and the five other people on the boat died because of the sharks. “I really hate sharks.”
  • Let me get this straight these people are going to single handedly equalize the tornado by throwing bombs into it and also kill the sharks? I don’t know whether this is based on science or another made up thing by the SyFy channel.
  • Fin is literally just shooting at the sharks with a shotgun. Straight up pointing it up in the air to the flying sharks coming out of the SHARKNADO and killing them with a shotgun.

  • So that bomb thing worked. Is this something we should train or military to do in the future in the event something like this actually happens?

  • Fin just sliced an incoming shark with a saw. He held up the saw like Rafiki in The Lion King and the shark split in half.

shark

  • Next to the flight school is a retirement home, and the old folks are outside in the pool. Do they not see what kind of shit is going down next door?
  • Ugh just realized how big of a cleanup this will be for the city of Los Angeles. Then realized this is a movie, not real life. Yet.
  • Matt’s flight school friend has his arm bit off by a shark, and if that isn’t bad enough, when he falls over and dies, another shark falls from the sky and lands on top of him. I cannot help but laugh at this.

  • Meanwhile, Matt and Nova are still up in the helicopter hovering near the SHARKNADO gearing up to throw the homemade bombs into the cyclone. On her last bomb, Nova gets caught by a shark, she falls out of the helicopter, and it eventually eats her. RIP. Matt’s obviously in shock, so he has some struggs landing the chopper, much to Fin’s distress.
  • Fin decides to take matters into his own hands to kill the last SHARKNADO. He takes out the Hummer that Aussie BFF (who also got attacked by a flying shark and died) loaded with bombs, and drives it up to the hills (For the record, the geography of this movie isn’t making sense, because there are no hills in Van Nuys and it’s bothering me). Fin has perfect timing as he drives to the top of the windy hill, as the SHARKNADO hovers right next to it. He lights the bombs in the car, presses the NITROUS BUTTON, jumps out, and the Hummer flies into the SHARKNADO, making the last one dissipate. Except for the fact that hundreds of dead sharks are now falling from the sky and into the LA streets.
  • OH MY GOD I LITERALLY HAVEN’T TYPED FOR LIKE THE LAST 10 MINUTES OF THE MOVIE BECAUSE IT WAS ACTUALLY SUSPENSEFUL AND WTF HAHAHAHA

Ok, I’ve regained consciousness. Here’s what just happened: THE SHARK EATS HIM WHILE HE’S HOLDING THE CHAINSAW, BUT HE CUTS HIS WAY OUT USING SAID CHAINSAW IN THE MOST DISGUSTING THING I’VE EVER SEEN IN MY LIFE (I IMAGINE CHILDBIRTH TO LOOK LIKE THIS). BUT THEN: FIN PULLS NOVA OUT OF THE SHARK’S STOMACH BECAUSE OF COURSE OUT OF ALL THE SHARKS THIS IS THE SAME ONE THAT ATE HER.

  • Matt tries to give Nova CPR, and it works. Her first words are “I really hate sharks,” as she flashes her perfect fake eyelashes.
  • Tara Reid literally wipes the blood off Fin’s mouth kisses him. If you didn’t feel like vomiting before… you will now.
  • This is how they end the entire movie: TOUCHE, SHARKNADO FILM MAKERS. TOUCHE.

Favorite quotes:

  • “Don’t you ever make fun of my stool again.” Grabby McAllister
  • “What the hell, there are sharks in the street!” Nova, the sharpest tool in the shed
  • “That’s a tiger shark.” Nova “How do you know that?” Fin “Shark week?” Nova, educated broad
  • “It’s just a little wahtah (water), typical California is afraid of the rain?!” guy on the 405 who may be from Boston but it’s hard to tell with his horrible accent.
  • “Looks like it’s that time of the month.” – Aussie BFF after Tara Reid’s BF is killed in the bloody waters in her house’s foyer
  • “Take the 10 to the 405 and you’re in Beverly Hills” – Grabby McAllister doing his best Californians impression
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Best of C+S 2013: What Even Is ‘Ratchet?’

You know that moment when you realize that you have to turn to Urban Dictionary to find out what “the youths” are talking about? That happened to us this year with “ratchet.” We worked through the definition, and in the process determined what Hogwarts house ratchets belong in and who is behind those ridiculous Yahoo Answers queries. The whole ratchet thing was so bizarre to us that we couldn’t leave it off of our Best Of list.

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Are You Ratchet?

Originally Posted on August 5 

Sometime in the past year, I realized just how old I am. A term showed up describing a subculture, and I had no clue what it meant. Yes, ratchet. Urban Dictionary has a few definitions, but frankly I’d avoid that unless you’re cool with 13 pages of white boys using the words “slutty” and “ghetto.” Google images helped a little more, but it still didn’t completely clear things up. I believe it was Helen Keller who said that ratchet “cannot be seen or heard, but must be felt with the heart.”

Here’s my take on it: a “ratchet” person is an outspoken and possibly brash young woman who favors ostentatious or eye-catching “urban” fashion and other facets of hip-hop culture. She displays marks of conspicuous consumption, but is associated (correctly or incorrectly) with urban areas of lower socioeconomic status.

However, that definition is kind of boring. In case you’re trying to work through whether you, yourself, are ratchet, please consult this handy guide instead:

(1) Did you learn the definition of ratchet from Urban Dictionary?
The ONLY ratchet definition from Urban Dictionary that was fit to print on our website.
  • You’re probably not ratchet.
(2) Okay, did you learn the definition of ratchet during a conversation about a Miley Cyrus video?
  • You’re probably not ratchet.
(3) In the past year, have you had a conversation about a fact you learned from the John Tesh radio show?
  • You’re probably not ratchet, and may be my mother. Hi, mom.
(4) Did you learn how to twerk by watching a YouTube tutorial?
  • You’re probably not ratchet.
  • Or, you are ratchet, and are just really tenacious about developing your skills, like a ratchet Hermione Granger. I get you.

* In my mind’s eye, Ratchet Hermione Granger has bucktoothed grills and wears a Gryffindor-colored bustier under her dress robes — but also, “ratchet” seems more Slytherin.

(5) Do you care at-freaking-ALL about whether or not I think you’re ratchet?
  • You’re probably not ratchet.
(6) Within recent memory, have you lamented the decline of panty hose in women’s fashions?
  • You’re probably not ratchet.
  • Or, you are ratchet, but have to wear professional attire for work and always feel a little less-than-polished every time you wear a skirt without hose.
(7) Was Sean Combs still going by Puff Daddy the last time you were at the club?
  • You’re probably not ratchet.
  • Or, you are ratchet, but are really more of an introvert, which is fine.
(8) Did you learn the definition of “ratchet” by writing a question in to Yahoo Answers?
  • Trick question. You’re not ratchet, but that’s only because every Yahoo Answers question is written by the same confused but well-intentioned 14-year-old girl who doesn’t quite know how to use Google.
(9) (a) If someone referred to you as “nasty,” would you be offended?
  • You’re not ratchet.
(b) Is the reason you’re offended because you’re assuming they mean “nasty” in terms of being unkind, rude, and unpleasant?
  • You’re not ratchet, and seem like an old lady.
(10) (a) Do you own hoop earrings with your name written across the middle?
  • That doesn’t mean you’re ratchet.
(b) Do you own earrings with “Ratchet” written across the middle?
  • Now you’re ratchet. Unless that’s your name.
(10) Last one: are you Miley Cyrus?
  • Oh, honey. You’re not ratchet. Your dad wrote Achy Breaky Heart. (note: Noah Cyrus… Maybe)

Best of C+S 2013: A Sneak Peek at My Memoirs

Happy New Year! We hope that 2013 was a wonderful year for you, and even if it wasn’t, we hope you’re excited for a fresh new year ahead. Maybe you’ve even made a New Year’s Resolution or two. If one of yours is to finally begin writing that book, we understand. Last year Traci got as far as drafting some working chapter titles for her memoirs. We think you’ll relate to them.

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Working Chapter Titles for my Memoir

Originally Posted on March 1

Like any normal 27-year-old girl who can’t seem to call herself a ‘woman’ quite yet, I’ve come to reflect a lot about my life up to now, and how my peers are living theirs in comparison. If I were ever to write a memoir, these are some working chapter titles which highlight key moments in my life, thoughts that plague my head from day to day, and other random things that are completely unrelated.

•How to tell someone their baby isn’t cute
•Valentine’s Day engagements are tacky, not romantic
•How cookie butter changed my life
•YouTube fan videos: underrated pieces of art or just plain creepy?
•Extreme couponing
•Unfriending hurts more than you know
•Why hasn’t anyone carded me in two months?
•Alcohol is expensive
•I wish WebMD counted as going to the doctor
•An ode to GIFs (ebook version only)
•X Pro II vs. Lo-Fi: The stress of picking the perfect filter
•Just Dance : Not just for kids
•My quest to being internet famous
•Traci’s guide to keeping cool after recognizing a celeb
•Kate and Leo, Zanessa, and other couples that could have been
•Dear Mark Zuckerberg
•What ever happened to Lou Bega?
•I’m calling it a night
•PPOs, HMOs, and LOLs
•I’m not coming to your wedding if there’s no open bar
•Wedding photo stalking 101
•Amy Poehler

Best of C+S 2013: Paula Deen’s Wedding Empire

Well friends, it’s the last day of 2013 — which is weird, because 2013 still sounds like the future, right? Today there will be a lot of lists and shows looking back on the year that was, and Paula Deen will probably be on there. Yeah. Remember that mess? She made some comments about an antebellum wedding and the rest is history (I’d say racist history, but that would probably be redundant).

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Racist Weddings With Paula Deen

Originally Posted on June 24

So Paula Deen is a racist. She’s that extra-bad kind of racist, too. She’s the kind that thinks because she doesn’t say she hates black people, and doesn’t wish ill on people of color, then she’s not really racist.

Racist Paula Deen planned a Racist Wedding. At Paula Deen’s Racist Wedding, slaves middle-aged black men would serve the guests in order to evoke a time in the South’s past. A time “before, during, or after the Civil War,” according to Paula Deen (isn’t that just ANY TIME?, I wondered). I think she meant the time when slavery was legal, the time during the war to make slavery illegal, and that whole messy Jim Crow/reconstruction business where things were still really bad.

By the way, Paula didn’t refer to these waiters as… you know, THAT word, because they were “professional black men.” First of all, since slaves didn’t get paid, weren’t they the opposite of professionals? Second, I don’t know how you become a professional black man. I think I might only know amateur black men.

I was so disappointed by this. I mean, why stop there, Paula? I think she could have a new show or maybe pen a book on the racist wedding theme. Antebellum Slave Wedding? Okay. But you KNOW you have some more racist wedding ideas in that buttery little head of yours, Paula. Here, let me help:

“Red Injun” Wedding

* The walk down the aisle will be re-named the “trail of tears.”

* Everyone gets an “Indian Name!” So fun.

* Plus, if you meet someone really cool at the wedding you will declare them your “spirit animal.”

* First dance? “Colors of the Wind.”

* It is an adults-only reception. All children will be swept away to boarding schools to be re-educated in the ways of the white man.

* All wait staff will be Native American. Guests are encouraged to share stories about how ”my great, great grandmother was 1/8 Cherokee Princess.”

* The dancing portion will be called a pow-wow.

* White hipster guests will be able to take the “authentic” native headdresses off of all of the waiters, so that they can wear them to outdoor music festivals.

*If you have the cash-money for celebrity entertainment: Johnny Depp as Tonto.

* Fry bread. Definitely fry bread. But with little butter pockets in there, because butter.

* Waiters will be told that they will be fairly compensated, but will actually be paid in Smallpox Blankets.

* The bride and groom will sign a contract with the wedding facility that stipulates that the party can go until 11pm. Then, when it’s time to leave, they’ll be like “okay, we DISCOVERED this reception hall so we’re just going to keep it.” And the owners will be like “nah, we were already here, I mean we kind of built the whole thing.” And the happy couple will be like “whatever, enjoy all your SMALLPOX.”

Exotic Asian Wedding

* All of the waitresses will be dressed as geishas. They will be small Asian women who are not necessarily of Japanese descent, because do you seriously think that Paula Deen’s racist wedding guests can tell? Paula Deen’s racist wedding guests probably barely know that there are different countries in Asia, they just think it’s an amorphous, spicy landmass called “The Orient.”

* Also all of these waitresses will be referred to as “Oriental.”

* Fortune cookies! Everyone will read theirs out loud then add “in bed” to the end of it. That’s not even racist, it’s just a fun party game.

* Male waiters or cooks will be white men doing racist Asian impressions a la Mickey Rooney in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

* Fried rice. Definitely fried rice. Wait. Can you deep-fry rice? Maybe that.

* When it comes time to pay, the hosts will encourage the Asian staff to figure out the tab because “you people are always so good at Math!”

Secret Annex Wedding

– Upon entering the reception, some guests will be provided with these really cute identifying patches that they will have to wear at all times (Star of David, purple triangle, what have you).

– Swing music! So ’40s.

– At the beginning of the wedding, all guests will have the same privileges. Restrictions will incrementally be added to the patch-wearing guests. First they will be unable to access the cake table, then they will be barred from dancing on the main dance floor.

– After a point, these guests will be forced to hide in an attic above the reception. They will have to be utterly still and silent “just like in the old days!”.

– Waitresses attending to these guests will be referred to as “Miep Gieses.”

Tenement Wedding

– This wedding package is perfect if you’re the right kind of white person (read: Protestant Anglo-Saxons of means)! As you walk down that aisle and into your new life, you can walk right back into the past – when you could rest assured that you’re the social better of even most other white people.

– The wedding will be “cozy.’ By that I mean each pew will be at double or triple occupancy.

– There will be one small, cramped shared bathroom for all guests.

– The entry to the ceremony will be called “Ellis Island.” And it’s going to be so adorable, oh my goodness. The ushers will inspect you for medical conditions and may arbitrarily send you back, but no big deal, I’m sure you’ll find a way home if that happens! Also if your name is hard to spell or pronounce, that’s silly but we’ll fix it for you.

– The ceremony will take place at a Protestant church, because this is America and we don’t worship the Pope here, thank you.

– All servers and staff will be inspected before they leave to make sure they’re not stealing anything. If there’s a fire, guests will get out just fine because we’ll lock the workers in! Otherwise they’d probably steal stuff.

– No Irish Need Apply.

Modern American Wedding

– Not nostalgic? No problem! Paula Deen will make sure that your fav features of modern America are all reflected in your nuptials

–  We’re going to let Black men go to this one. But if you drive there, you’ll probably get pulled over on the way in. Paula Deen’s just trying to keep all y’all safe!

– Dinner will be served buffet-style. However, women’s plates will be 75% the size of men’s. It’s already a racist wedding, we don’t want to get all wacky with equality and stuff. Who knows where that could lead?

– If you fall anywhere on the brown spectrum, color-wise, please carry identification with you as you may have to prove citizenship at any time.

– The guests with the top 1% of the income may occupy 40% of the dance floor. Don’t worry, most of them will be white.

– Macaroni and cheese bar! Yum.

– I can’t believe I even have to tell you this, but a Paula Deen Modern American Wedding is a one man – one woman affair.

– Probably there’ll be muzak during dinner, then soft rock during the dancing portion. You know Delilah, the inoffensive  syndicated host on radio stations that middle-aged ladies sometimes like? She’s the DJ.

– Cute idea: you could have “food deserts” where your less-affluent guests will have to go really, really far to get any of your more fresh and delicious dishes. But right at their tables you could give them some stuff with sodium and preservatives all up in it!

– A Paula Deen Modern American Wedding is not handicap-accessible.

Please note that all of these ideas can be performed as a bar mitzvah instead. However, that probably means that you’re Jewish, and Paula Deen WILL make a joke about that and levy anti-Semitic slurs at you.

Best of C+S 2013: Neon Dreams, Lisa Frank Nightmares

On Friday, we roasted 90s fashion, but let’s not fool ourselves — they were the best decade ever. And yet … kind of disturbing as well? Case in point: Lisa Frank. At first it’s all tap-dancing teddy bears and neon dolphins, and before you know it you have a trapper-keeper featuring a bikini-clad watermelon with visible innards.

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15 Disturbing Lisa Frank Designs That Are Deceivingly Awesome

Originally Posted on May 3 

Like many young girls growing up in the U.S. between the years of 1990-2000, I fell into the trap that is Lisa Frank. The out of this world designs, the use of every color in the spectrum, the need to have all the stickers, trapper keepers, notebooks and folders money could buy! I wanted it all!

But looking back, and taking a deeper look into the Lisa Frank portfolio, I’ve noticed that these are some pretty trippy designs – like I wouldn’t be surprised if Lisa herself was on shrooms or something while coming up with this stuff. Yet all of it was genius, and she made millions – and is still making millions – on a new generation of kids eating this stuff up, and the generation like ours, just looking for a sense of nostalgia.

Here are just some of designs that upon further inspection, are actually disturbing, politically incorrect, or just ridiculously weird.

The watermelon is wearing a bikini, yet her insides are still showing.

Aliens need love and platform shoes too.

My cats hang out in my pink high tops all the time too.

#Equality

Were insects a thing that girls were into? Like they’re not even cartoony.

A cute cat angel or Lisa Frank’s subtle message about life after death?

Jaws on acid.

Bitch, I’m fabulous.

Just because they’re golden labs playing in their own sandcastle doesn’t mean they’re American. Check out the flag, racists. Viva Mexico!

Bears can’t do splits.

Just… everything about this gypsy pig is disturbing.

This polar bear is getting a little too close to the Eskimo chick for my liking.

And now she’s with the husky? Polar bear is on to you, son.

Just explain this one to me.

No comment.

Best of C+S 2013: Totally Radical 90s Style

To close out Week One of our “best of” posts, we’d like to remind you that none of us looked cool in the 90s. Sure, those teenage tumblr-ers and youtube-ies will try to tell you that we all looked super stylish. However, they weren’t there, they don’t understand, and for half a decade, all of our butts looked like ice-cream cones.

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90s Fashion Myths vs. Realities

Originally Posted on October 8

Listen, young ladies on tumblr. You’re all into the 90s look, and that’s great, I suppose. I mean, from my perspective it’s the very definition of not great, because it means that I am now old enough to have worn a “vintage” trend the first time around, but bully for you.

Here’s the deal, though. You’re getting it wrong. Your romanticized version of the 90s is super cute, but that’s not how it was. It was awkward, frumpy, and all around unfortunate. Our shirts were too wide and short by a good stretch. Our jeans made us look ice cream cone-shaped. Regardless of season or latitude, everyone was dressed for a Seattle winter. Inspired by our live blog of Hocus Pocus, I present a fashion companion to all you tumblr girls who were born after the early 90s: You Weren’t There, You Wouldn’t Understand

Jeans

Myth:

Everyone wore distressed, slouchy “boyfriend” pants or sleek, high-waisted, taper-legged denim.

Reality:

Yeah. Our waists were high all right. But do you know what lay between the high waist and the tapered ankle? A foot-long butt. While the modern iteration of these pants has a slim fit, there was no “skinny’ in 90s jeans. Rather, there was a ton of fabric, so that your frame would blossom out after your waist, only to end in a vice grip around your ankles. We all looked like gorgeous ice cream cones.

In terms of denim, the acid wash and stone wash we wore had NOTHING in common with today’s distressed denim. It looked almost like the cover of a marble composition notebook. We didn’t do subtlety very well back then. And if you weren’t wearing that – and this never shows up on your tumblrs – you were wearing super-bright, almost indigo blue denim.

Flannel

Myth:

We all wore big, cozy flannel shirts a la Kurt Cobain or – let’s be real – Angela Chase.

Reality:

Well, we did… kind of. I remember being so excited in second grade to get a slouchy flannel for Christmas – so I could look like Cory Matthews. So, I want you to think less Nirvana and more TGIF. Most of us didn’t look like angsty grunge musicians, we looked like honor roll kids from nice families who were trying to stay comfy.

Leggings

Myth:

Underneath our Seattle flannels or stylish tunic tops, we showed off our toned, aerobicized legs in leggings, topped off with Doc Martins.

Reality:

Every kind of pants in the 90s made you look like you were wearing diapers. I think leggings had a little less elastic then, plus most of the ones we had were stirrup leggings. Yeah. In the 90s, stirrups weren’t just for horseback riding and your gyno’s office. So, pants were well secured at the waist and ankles, and kind of saggy and sad in between. On our feet? Keds.

Hair

Myth:

Our hair fell in long, devil-may-care waves and curls, kind of like Lorde.

Reality:

Those big 80s bangs didn’t really die until the mid-90s. We didn’t wear loose waves, we wore spiral perms. If you wanted to look really polished, you probably had The Rachel, and if you wanted to look really professional, you had Princess Diana’s haircut. In the late 90s, we didn’t wear long, subtle side bangs like all of you kids. We had light fringes that we painstakingly curled under with round brushes, so your forehead was under a protective hair-dome. There was a lot of half-up, half-down happening. Lots of claw clips. Scrunchies. Seasonal scrunchies, classy scrunchies, denim scrunchies. One of the first times I remember getting a big laugh in a crowded room, I was about 5 and was making up a commercial for scrunchies at Thanksgiving with my extended fam. “Scrunchies! Because real bracelets are for snobs! Scrunchies! Because you could put it in your hair later, maybe!” (See, the whole thing with scrunchies was that they just ended up on everyone’s wrists).

Businesswear

Myth:

The woman of the 90s wore a lot of power pieces – be it menswear-inspired suspenders, or tiny suits a la Ally McBeal.

Reality:

The woman of the 90s wore a lot of shoulder pads – it wasn’t just the 80s. She’s also responsible for that thing where you wear big, ugly sneakers with business clothes in order to go power walking. 90s women wore a ton of horrible flat-front khakis. The Adult Jumper was going strong, and not just for teachers.

Neon

Myth:

Totally radical!

Reality:

Totally dopey.

Riot Grrl

Myth:

We wore baby doll dresses as a subtle critique of the infatilization of adult women – ditto for those baby barrettes. These were paired with heavy, down-to-business boots. Zines as far as the eye can see.

Reality:

Sure. We all wore baby doll dresses with baby barrettes and boots — because Stephanie Tanner did. I’m sure it was different if you were in high school or college, but if you were a kid in the 90s you probably weren’t wearing these fashions to fight the patriarchy with Kathleen Hanna and Courtney Love. You just wanted to look like people on TV.

Music

Myth:

While we wore our sweet tumblr-y fashions, we listened to the latest indie tunes from mix tapes that we ordered from the back of a zine.

Reality:

Celine Dion. Natalie Merchant. A lot of pseudo-intellectualism: “tell me all your thoughts on God,” e.g. Harmonicas without irony. Actually, everything without irony. That’s what separates real 90s style from the (admittedly better) 2010s revival, and the best thing about the decade: we really, earnestly meant all of this.

Best of C+S 2013: The Only Child Club

It’s December 26, and many of you have just celebrated Christmas with all of your siblings. Or maybe – like Traci – you’re an only child. Don’t let the non-onlies get you down — there are some serious life lessons to glean from the only child life.

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Life Lessons From an Only Child

(originally posted March 29)

Being an only child has taught me a lot of things throughout my life, mostly that there a lot of assumptions people make if they know you’re an only child. But I’m here to break the stereotypes and tell you the truth about being the only kid in the family. I would like to reiterate that I’m not speaking on behalf of the Only Children of America coalition (not a real thing), but I’d say this is pretty accurate.

1) We’re very independent

Sisters are doin’ it for themselves. Or brothers, whatever. In sixth grade, I had dance lessons that started at 4pm, which was before my parents got out of work. So on the days I had dance, I would take the bus home, be by myself for about an hour or so, then my friend’s mom would pick me up and we’d go to class. I mean I was 11 years old, but at the same time, there was no one else around to make sure I wasn’t like, lighting anything on fire. But I was given the responsibility of having keys to the house, knowing how to turn off the alarm system, make food if need be. If something went wrong, I had to figure it out and fix it myself. If anything, this is what has stuck with me the most. I’ve never really relied on anyone to do anything for me, because I know I can (usually) do it myself.

2) We’re okay with being alone

Ok, that sentence isn’t supposed to be read with the same kind of depression you read it with. But along the same notion of being independent, so does time in solitary (again, not meant to be weird and prison-y). After my parents trusted me with being at home by myself, it wasn’t necessary for them to have anyone look after me. So if they went out, I was by myself in the house. I would like to add that I didn’t really have friends or family members that lived nearby, so again, I was just used to being alone. Without a sibling, I was used to doing stuff by myself, which is still true to this day, mainly because it’s all I know. It doesn’t necessarily mean that I hate being around people. I mean for the most part that’s true because I hate people (my years working retail is to thank for that complex). But I mean only children usually tend to gravitate towards extended family or in my case, my friends, to hang out with all the time. So just as much as we like being alone, we like being around people. But we also need our personal space at the same time. Yeah, we’re crazy.

3) We can do weird shit

My friend Caitlin and I call this the ‘Only Child Syndrome’, because we end up doing random weird things that we don’t realize we’re A) doing in the first place or B) is even weird at all. I don’t even really know how to explain this besides doing like odd little movements or noises or giving strange looks… No one was around to call us out on being weird, so that explains why we’re still weird now. I also tend to talk to myself a lot – like out loud. I assume kids with siblings would usually have a brother or sister to at least be around when you’re saying something, and it’s not as weird as talking outloud and knowing no one ever hears you.

4) We don’t actually like being only children

Okay, I may be speaking for myself here, but I honestly don’t really like being an only child. Like I said, I didn’t have any family members – cousins, etc. living near me growing up. They were/are all in the Philippines, and some here in LA. But what’s weird is that my dad is one of 9 kids. I have a bunch of cousins and second cousins, some of whom I don’t even know. But they all grew up together and I was the American kid. When we go back to the Philippines, I always feel like the odd man out, not only because of the language barrier and cultural differences, but because they all have the advantage of hanging out with each other, while I had my parents and me, myself and I. I’m just saying it would have been much easier to have a sibling when going back to the Phil. Also, I could never blame anything I did wrong on a sibling, or bitch about my parents to someone who would really understand.

5) We’re not all spoiled

So this is obviously the most common only child stereotype. All my friends who are only children are not spoiled by any means. Well, in the sense that they don’t want everything in the world and expect their parents to buy it for them. Many people believe that we’re naturally born brats who expect to be doted on all the time, but that’s far from the case. In fact, I know some people like that who do have siblings, and it’s embarrassing. But like, I’ve never expected my parents to get me everything I’ve ever wanted. I will say that they have done the thing where if I’ll mention my DVD player is broken, they’ll call me back 2 days later and say we found a blu-ray player, and bought it for you, you can pick it up at Best Buy sort of thing (that’s a true story). We don’t act spoiled, but once in a while, we’ll get spoiled.

Best of C+S 2013: Say Hello To Your Friends – Baby-Sitters Club!

MERRY CHRISTMAS, FRIENDS!!! Hope you’re enjoying the holiday today (if you celebrate it). In the event you get a little down time from unwrapping gifts and eating, please enjoy our gift to you, in the form of a (yet to be produced) musical from a popular 90s young adult series. It’s really the gift that keeps on giving, folks. Yay Santa!

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The Baby-Sitters Club: The Musical — Excerpts From The Libretto

{originally posted January 17th}

If I know one thing that sells these days, it’s nostalgia. And if I know two things that sell these days, they’re nostalgia, and making musicals out of things that were never intended to be musicals. While I haven’t exactly worked out the whole thing, here are some song titles and sample lyrics from my smash hit in the making, The Baby-Sitters Club: The Musical.

The Chapter Where We Find Out About Everyone: This number is narrated by the Greek Chorus, which is comprised of three ladies dressed as Ann M. Martin, Beverly Cleary, and Francine Pascal (read: three women in cardigans with glasses and sensible haircuts).

  • Sample lyrics:

I know you will skip over this,
As you wait for the story to begin –
But listen, Please! And don’t forget
About Jessi’s cocoa colored skin.
And Mallory’s clear braces hide
The potential she has within –
Hey Reader! Come back here! Do not disparage
The chapter that tells of the Schafer-Spier marriage
It’s The Chapter Where We Find Out About Everyone,
Ghostwritten just for you!

Stonybrook’s Divorce Rate: In this selection, the babysitters and their charges mourn the demise of the nuclear family, as evidenced by Stonybrook’s sky-high divorce rate [see Dawn’s mom, Kristy’s parents, the Brewers, most of the charges who weren’t part of the 27-kid Pike family].

Stonybrook’s Divorce Rate, Reprise: The ever-opportunistic BSC celebrates the economic advantages of marital instability in Stonybrook: with so many single-parent households and moms on the dating market, there is an obscene need for babysitters.

Shannon Kilbourne is Boring: As associate member Shannon Kilbourne leaves the BSC to pursue additional college courses (probably with that nerd Janine Kishi, am I right?), the Baby-Sitters Club does not care. Because Shannon Kilbourne is really, really boring.

  • Sample lyrics:

Shannon Kilbourne is Boring
There’s nothing else to say
If Shannon Kilbourne’s a color
Then Shannon Kilbourne is grey
Like the stony halls of S.M.S.
On an empty summer day
No one cares about Shannon Kilbourne
We’d gladly give her away.

She’s our associate member
We call her when we get stuck
But Shannon’s not at our meetings
Cause Shannon Kilbourne sucks
She gives it her best effort, yes
But I still don’t give a fuck
We won’t miss Shannon Kilbourne
Shannon, Good Bye,
Good Luck!
[Shannon shrugs and walks away. She even walks away boring. There is no point to Shannon Kilbourne, and everyone knows it.]

The Diabetes Ballet: In this dance interlude, a dreaming Stacy finds herself stalked by dancing Twinkies, Twix, and Twizzlers that are hidden throughout Claudia’s room. She wakes up having wet the bed. [I can’t be the only person who has that moment in Stacy’s medical history seared in her memory.]

Almond-Shaped Eyes, Broken-Shaped Heart: Claudia mourns Mimi, her grandmother who taught her what love really is.

  • Sample Lyrics:

My earrings are ketchup and mustard bottles,
My leggings are airbrushed with relish
But my themed outfit grows from a sorrow below
Like a Bedazzler that cannot embellish.

My cowboy hat and boots may match
My cactus skirt and bolo tie
But nothing can match the sadness
Of the tears from my almond-shaped eyes.

Bart’s Bashings: After Kristy’s Krushers defeat Bart’s Bashers on the Little League field, Bart delivers his own crushing blow: he breaks up with Kristy due to their “incompatibilities.”

  • Sample Lyrics:

[Bart] Hey Kristy! When I talk to you, I run out of words to say –
Because all you talk about is softball, or the gym pants you bought today,
It’s not that I think you’re annoying – No! I just kinda think that you’re —
[Greek Chorus] SHH!
[Bart, spoken:] Well, you know everyone’s been thinking it…
You act like we’re an item, Kris, but girl, you’re no great thespian,
And those are some clunky boots you’ve got for a girl who’s not an equestrian,
It’s clear from context and subtext that your character’s really a —
[Greek Chorus] Bart! Come on!

Kristy Thomas, Bossy Bitch: The BSC members discuss how Kristy, while a smart and savvy go-getter, is also a controlling teen tyrant:

  • Sample Lyrics:
Someday she’ll be CEO
Someday she’ll be rich,
Some day she’ll set the world alight,
But right now, Kristy’s a bitch!
 
Kristy will someday be the head
Of a multi-national corporation,
And I’ll just say I knew her when
She was the bitchiest teen in the nation!
 
Kristy could run the FBI!
Kristy could be the president!
But in my heart she’ll always be
Stonybrook’s bitchiest resident.

But that’s just a bit of what The Babysitter’s Club: The Musical has to offer! Check some stage very far from Broadway around 2018 or so to hear these other great selections: JK Rowling, Plagiarist (in which the Pikes file suit for copyright infringement because the Weasleys were obviously based on them), Nobody Likes You, Karen Brewer (Gigundoly Bratty remix), BSC Super Special! (it’s exactly like a regular song but longer and with occasional cursive), and I Know He’s Just a Young Adult Character But I’ve Always Felt Like Logan Bruno’s Probably Really Hot. Continue reading

Best of C+S 2013: The Greatness That is Amy Poehler

It’s Day 2 of our ‘Best of’ series, and we bring you our blog’s patron saint, Amy Meredith Poehler. You’ll find her sprinkled all over Cookies + Sangria, so since we could only pick one, we decided on one of the main reasons we love her – she’s not just a celebrity that entertains us and carries on with her daily life – she uses her platform in the public eye to make a difference and inspire. Keep doing yo thang girl. 143 AAF LYLAS.

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Amy Poehler: Sage to All

{originally posted April 24th}

If you know either Molly or I, or have even been reading this blog for a while, you know that we have a special place in our heart for Amy Poehler. So naturally, I follow (read: stalk) everything she does. Amy started a website/YouTube channel a while ago called Smart Girls at the Party, which inspires, encourages, and features young, smart, women. All their featured shows are fantastic (and even involve dance parties!), but one of my favorites on the site (and on the internet) is Ask Amy.

This is a series of short videos in which Amy answers viewer questions, and focuses on one topic per episode. You may have seen the latest episode make its rounds on the internet.

I Love You Boston

As you can tell, she approaches these videos and topics from an honest, earnest place, and genuinely wants to give advice to everyone watching. What’s touching about this particular episode is that Amy, who is a Boston-area native, is clearly fed up with last week’s horrific events, and her downcast and fed up demeanor exemplifies exactly what I’m assuming all of America is feeling right now. And while we may not have all the answers to what’s going on, there is something we can do to prevent from becoming too saturated with the bad things in the world.

Sigh. I love her so much. Here are a few of my favorite episodes, but I suggest you check the whole site out!!

Goodbye
“The only thing we can depend on is change… Life is just a series of moments… a string of pearls that make up the necklace of your life and every once in a while to complete the circle, you need to end a chapter.” (Bonus Abel at the end!!!)

Decisions
“Most decisions aren’t final. Feelings change all the time. You can always change your mind and taking risks and making choices is what makes life so exciting because we never know whats going to happen. Every day something new comes our way. Isn’t that exciting?”

Letting Go

“Let go of the idea of trying… Letting go suddenly is an act of faith and the universe provides for you what is really meant to be.”

Courage

“Great people do things before they’re ready. They do things before they know they can do it.”

Stress
In which Amy sits in a bathtub and calls herself a crazy person.

Best of C+S 2013: Celebrity Baby Names

We’ve had an amazing first year here at Cookies + Sangria, and we owe a lot of that to the best readers on the internet. As a “thank you” for making Year One so great, we’re closing out 2013 with a few of our favorite posts from the past 12 months. We hope you enjoy the look back, and we’ll see you in 2014 with new content in the new year! Happy Holidays!

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From Axl Jack to North West to more common names like Winnie Rose and Prince George, a bunch of unknowing babies were born to celebrities this year, but since a majority of them tend to pick the weird monikers of the name spectrum, would it really be that weird if any of these words would be made into names?

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Ten Words That Sound Like Celebrity Baby Names

{originally posted February 13th}

A universe without absurd celebrity baby names would be like a universe without circus peanuts. Some people adore them, some people abhor them, but the world would be a little less sweet — yet fully operational — without them.

I have compiled a list of words that sound like celebrity baby names, because that’s just the kind of lady I am. Note that all of these were chosen based on sound and spelling, not meaning.

Update: As of June 2013, Kim Kardashian and Kanye West named their baby North West. Obviously, they’ve taken the “words that sound like celebrity baby names” thing to heart.

  • Rayon (Boy. It will go on to widespread use among commoners. After a few years, a celeb will use it on a girl to be “edgy.” The Internet will be divided about that.) [Ed. note: A not-so-secret secret here at C+S is that we write/queue our posts up to a month in advance. A few weeks after I wrote this, this post appeared: a (non-celeb) Rayon already exists in the UK! I don’t want you all to feel scammed, so I’m adding a bonus eleventh name at the end of the list.]
  • Peplum (Girl. The mother is quirky and British or French. They call her Peppy.)
  • Cavalry (Girl. She will be aptly and unfortunately horse-faced.)
  • Madrina (Girl. The mother will explain that she is “named after my godmother.”)
  • Loafer (Boy. The mom will refer to him as Lo in interviews (in which she never shuts up about him.))
  • Gradient (Boy. It will go on to mass appeal with parents who like Grady but want “something more formal.” These are the same people who name their boys Brentson and Troyton but only ever plan to call them Brent and Troy.)
  • Attaché (Girl. An aging rocker’s child with a much younger woman. They will insist on calling her Che, but she will become Attie once she’s old enough to have opinions.)
  • Avarice (Girl. Looks like Ava + Alice + Beatrice, all of which are already “in” these days. I bet someone somewhere has already done this.)
  • Aril (Unisex. Starts as a boy name but becomes a popular misspelling of Ariel. Aril and Lira become a trendy twin name duo.)
  • Carton (Boy. With Carter, Carson, and names ending in -on as popular as they are, I’m surprised and disappointed that nobody has done this yet.)
  • Answer (Unisex. The parents will already have a kid with a word name, like Ever or Story — believe it or not, there are already 2 celebrity babies with each of those names. Names starting with A are popular, and it starts with Ann, which is a name, so I don’t even think this is too off-base. The parents will have some cheesy explanation for the name, like “She is the answer to our prayers!” or “Whenever he is questioning something, he only has to look to himself for the answer.” )