Coachella Chows Down

OMG can you believe how crazy Coachella was this weekend? I’m so mad I didn’t see Kanye but I DID get a glimpse of Leo trying to pretend he wasn’t just whispering in Rihanna’s ear.

I can believe how crazy it was, mainly because I wasn’t there despite all those things above being true.

While a lot of Angelenos made the exodus out to Indio/Palm Springs over the weekend, I happily spent #NoChella at home blogging, finishing Fuller House and stalking the significant others of Gilmore Girls actors on social media. Which activity is better ? Who’s to say?! However, during my Instagram and Twitter stalking, I also found out that apparently there has been a reason for me to go to Coachella all along, and that reason is food.

I’m not actually sure if these top notch food stands have been at thing at Coachella for forever, but thanks to social media and the Internet, I know now. In my mind, Coachella is a sea of people on top of a mound of dirt in hot hot heat (not the band) and living on port-a-potties and mediocre pizza. Apparently only some of that is factual.

This year, the fest features 40 different vendors + pop-ups + three full-service restaurants. Suprisingly fancy, no? Basically, the Coachella food line-up is made up of a handful of the trendiest and most popular restaurants in Los Angeles that make the journey to the trendiest and most popular music festival in the U.S. and set up shop. If you’ve ever wanted to know what the food culture is like in LA, Coachella represents it well. First of all, you have a variety of different cuisines available to you that aren’t just funnel cakes and turkey legs. Second, a lot of those cuisines take traditional dishes and modernize them with another genre – e.g. Canadian Poutine with Indian Chicken Tikka Masala (see below) or comfort foods with a “California flare” – e.g. ice cream in a “milky bun” (see below).

However, the main requirement for cool food in LA is that it’s super Instagrammable because if no one posts pictures on Instagram of Coachella, does Coachella even exist? Here are just a few of the foods that took over Insta during Weekend 1, and prepare to feel FOMO for a festival based on food alone.

Ice Cream

Here’s said ice cream – a milky bun is a product of Afters Ice Cream, where they take the ice cream of your choice, add a topping, and put it inside a modified glazed donut. Then they put it through some kind of top secret iron which makes the bun warm but keeps the ice cream cold because it’s literal magic they’re making.

 

And here we have regular ice cream, which seems less exciting than ice cream in a hot bun.

Vegan

Apparently vegan ramen is a thing, and it’s super popular

My favorite part about vegan foodstagrams is trying to figure out just how much of it looks truly edible

Korean

LA’s Koreatown is a hot spot for foods and late night entertainment, so it’s no surprise Korean BBQ and bibimbap made its way to Coachella Valley.

Burgs

Still don’t know why this bun is red, but given the amount of burger joints in SoCal, you have to stand out somehow.

Mexican

What is California without Mexican food? A pit of guacamole-less despair.

View this post on Instagram

Chilaquiles, Bacon, Cheese § Guacamole || The Lobos Truck || Indio, CA (@coachella) Photo Credit 📷: @lafoodieguy Even the bear wants in on these @thelobostruck chilaquiles. Day ✌🏼️ of the festival is getting ready to start here and we're getting nourished for the day ahead. These were pretty amazing, even when you wake up still feeling the night before. Made sure to ask for bacon and guac because it didn't come with.👌🏼 Stay tuned for more eats from the second day of @coachella. Like, comment or tag a friend who would love these for breakfast! ✌🏼️😎 #LAFoodieGuy #LAFG ⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀ 👇🏼👯 Comment or tag your friends! 👫👇🏼

A post shared by Los Angeles Foodie Guy ✌️😎🍔 (@lafoodieguy) on

Poke

I feel like poke bowls are making their way from Hawaii to LA slowly but surely after seeing a whole lot of poke restaurants popping up. I ain’t mad about it.

Donuts

Gourmet donuts are huge in LA. These particular ones are vegan, because, duh.

Fries

All the fries. All the toppings. All the time.

Hot Dogs

How you even eat this without feeling ridiculous in public, idk.

View this post on Instagram

The full package 😏🌭 #sumodog #coachella

A post shared by Lesley (@misscutiefoodie) on

Sandwiches

Probably one of the most convenient foods at Coachella, you can grab one and go save a spot so you have a good view of Purity Ring later. Give me one of everything, please.

Bowls

From acai bowls to quinoa bowls, it’s like the best of West Hollywood in the desert.

Popsicles

Because it’s 90 degrees in the desert and you’re jumping around next to sweaty humans.

Dessert

Camping is a thing people do at Coachella, so obvs you gotta have gourmet s’mores.

Juice

Welcome to California, where you drink alcohol all day and go on a juice cleanse for the rest of the month.

 

 

Success or Fail? A 30 Before 30 Update

Hi team. Last year, I wrote about making a 30 Before 30 bucket list, which was comprised of a whole bunch of goals, activities, etc. I wanted to do before I turned 30. Well, I turned 30 in January, and I’m proud to report I checked off 22 out of 30 items on my list! Not too bad, and to be honest, I’m not even upset I didn’t finish them all. By even making the list in the first place, it forced me to do things I don’t think I would have otherwise, so getting any of them done is an accomplishment in itself.

In my post from last year, I highlighted some of the tasks on the 30 Before 30 list, so I’m revisiting them and seeing how I did. Obviously, I don’t have all 30 of them listed, but just imagine they’re all here.

Learn to make 3 new dishes

2015: When I cook dinner, it’s not really anything special. The less ingredients the better. I blame this on account of my frugality and laziness, but I’m hoping to change that (the laziness, at least I can control). I figure if I master at least 3 good dishes, it can be my go to for parties and what not. Sushi is probs my favorite food, so another one of the things on my list is learn how to make sushi. And conveniently, I would also like to have a dinner party, so all this just fits right together.

Status: Accomplished! While sushi making was fun and I didn’t die from eating the raw fish, I think I’ll leave it to the professional sushi chefs to provide me with much better rolls.

Go somewhere I’ve never gone before

2015: If I won the lottery today, I would use it to pay off all my debts, do some other things with it, and then travel. Anywhere my heart desires – possibly even in first class! Living in LA, you kind of get stuck in the… LA-ness of it, and it’s good for your sanity to get out every once in a while. I usually spend my vacation time in the same places, mainly back home on the east coast. But there are so many other places to go that won’t break the bank. Although I said I would start this thing on my birthday, I’ve cheated on a few things already, this being one of them. A few of my friends and I recently went up to Napa Valley for a brief, yet completely successful and fulfilling weekend, and it was glorious. It was my first time in that area, and let me tell you – Napa is everything it’s cracked up to be, folks.

Status: Accomplished! I went to multiple new places in 2015, including the Temecula wine country and Grand Cayman Island and Castaway Cay (thanks to a cruise I went on). However, I tripled up on a trip by driving down to La Jolla, about two hours south of LA. The city is right on the edge of the Pacific and is exactly what you picture when you think picturesque California coast. Also, they’re known for seals, as seen below. They had cute stores and great food and highly recommend – 10/10.

Travel somewhere by myself

2015: Speaking of which, I feel all Eat Pray Love/Wild about this, in that going on a trip by yourself is necessary in life. I’m an only child and independent by nature, so the thought of this doesn’t sound scary or intimidating, as I imagine it would be to some people. This sounds delightful to me and I have yet to figure out where said trip will be.

Status: Accomplished! Like I said, I tripled up on La Jolla by going solo bolo to a pimp ass resort called Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa. I got free champagne when I arrived, had a huge bed to myself, a bathroom with marble floors and a complimentary bottle of wine. Again, highly recommend – 10/10.

Get a massage

2015: I’m gonna be real with y’all – I don’t necessarily find it appealing when complete strangers touch me, especially if I’m half naked. Is that completely unreasonable? But I’m going to try to let that go in favor of comfort and relaxation.

Status: Accomplished. And my gut was right. The final triple threat of that La Jolla trip was getting a massage at the resort. While it was luxurious and I got free cucumber water, I don’t think I would ever do it again. I didn’t feel as relaxed as I thought it was going to be, and that’s all my fault, not the fault of my masseuse, who was lovely. I didn’t take a pic of that, so here’s the view I had while sitting near the saltwater whirlpool and reading a Dawson’s Creek novel at the spa.

Photo Jul 08, 2 11 44 PM (1)

Volunteer 20 hours

2015: I used to volunteer a lot growing up. Forgetting the fact that in high school a lot of it was required, I actually enjoyed volunteering, and did it throughout college. For a while there I even wanted to work for a non-profit. I really want to get back into it, and I’ve had some attempts in the past couple of years, but I’m actually making a goal of 20 hours to fill, which is really not even that much.

Status: Big Fail. This was one of the items I was most bummed about not accomplishing. I wanted to find one organization that I cared deeply about, then exclusively volunteer for them, but I just kept putting it off. It’s still on my list!

Go see at least 5 movies in the theater

2015: I am a TV person. I watch all the TV. And like I mentioned earlier, I am a frugal person. Unless it’s a movie I really want to see in the theater, I will wait until it comes to Netflix and I receive it as part of my subscription. However, working in entertainment news, it’s usually helpful to know what I’m writing about, and not just basic facts about them. I’m not gonna lie to you – I already have my first movie lined up. And it’s the Backstreet Boys documentary, which comes out on Friday.

Status: Accomplished! I ended up seeing MORE than 5 movies!!! Ironically the BSB movie I ended up buying on iTunes it was released in the theater, so I cried in the privacy of my own bedroom. The other films include but are not limited to: The Last Five Years, Spy, Inside Out, Magic Mike XXL and Trainwreck. All movies that were A+++

Watch 5 “classic” movies

2015: To go along with that, I’ve written about my Pop Culture Blind Spots before, and I’m going to make an effort to actually sit down and watch some of them. We’ll start with the black and white classics… Star Wars will have to wait.

Status: Accomplished! Again, I was an overachiever on this one and did way more than five, some which which I did as a Pop Culture Blind Spot for this very blog (Star Wars or Dirty Dancing, anyone?). Some other faves include Bridget Jones’ Diary, Top Gun and Back to the Future.

Donate clothes I haven’t worn in a year

2015: I have been meaning to do this for years, and now’s a better time than any to actually follow through. Part of this involves re-organizing my closet, which I’ve already done and am super excited about. But this whole – I’m saving this just in case I need it for a Halloween costume – thing, isn’t working.

Status: Accomplished! And I’ve donated twice!

Read 3 new books

2015: Again, I am a TV person. I watch all the TV. Thus leaving me with little time to sit and read. Hell, I barely have time to catch up on my Entertainment Weekly issues. As for reading actual books, I find that I read the most when I’m traveling, since there’s nothing else to do. I used to read all the time when I rode the subway in Boston, but now, I have to like pay attention to the road when I’m driving and stuff. Also, I have a tendency to just re-read books – I don’t need to read Harry Potter again (I mean I could and should, but I shan’t). But I’ve set a realistic goal for myself and hopefully I can finish three new books by 2016.

Status: Accomplished! Luckily, I know myself well enough that a total of three was risky, but I read FOUR! Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham, Dawson’s Creek: A Capeside Christmas (that novel I was reading in La Jolla) and two books by fellow Emerson alum and one of my friend’s BFFs, Katie Cotugno, whose two YA books, How to Love and 99 Days, I devoured.

Go to 10 new restaurants

2015: Like my go-to books, I have go to restaurants, and it’s time to change that. I’ve been compiling a list of eateries in LA that I’ve been wanting to go to, and 10 seems like a reasonable number. I will just have to force my friends into going to all new venues.

Status: Accomplished! After I hit 15 I stopped counting, but one that is an LA staple that everyone needs to go to is Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles. Ugh I dream about it still.

Photo Jan 09, 7 14 03 PM

Explore 5 new places in LA

2015: LA’s a big city, and while I’ve lived here for just over five years now, there’s still plenty more to see. You get stuck living in the bubble of your home neighborhood and work neighborhood, and any little pockets that your frequent. I never make it down to the West side or like Venice (as seen above) or Santa Monica or anything over there, mainly because there’s no reason for me to. Sans Dunkin Donuts, of course. But it’s time I start taking advantage of what’s around me.

Status: Accomplished! I’m not a big sports fan but it was still exciting to go to my first Dodgers game with a real Dodgers fan who could explain pretty much everything to me. Plus I got a Dodger (hot) Dog which was as good as everyone says it is.

Photo Aug 14, 7 25 47 PM (1)

Clean out email

2015: I’m at 19% of 15 GB used on my Gmail, which I’ve had since 2006. That number may seem low, but you should see my inbox (don’t). It’s time I start cleaning shit out.

Status: Accomplished! Plus I have all the tabs now and the Gmail app on my phone, which I didn’t have before. God bless.

Pay for someone’s coffee 5 times

2015: Pay it forward. Be kind to one another. All that jazz.

Status: Fail to humans everywhere and to Ellen DeGeneres. Let’s be real, if anyone’s buying coffee, it’s for myself.

Take a photo or video each day

2015: This is not a new thing. I’m going to see if I can keep it up. Instead of posting it every day, I’ll hopefully keep it up and compile everything into a handy video/slideshow on my 30th.

Status: Accomplished! And I just finished putting it all together in one 13 minute long video! You’ve been warned.

 

Best of C+S 2014: Band at Coachella or Stefon’s Favorite Club?

It’s New Year’s Eve, kids, so what better way than to spend it at the hottest club in New York City? This place has everything, confetti from the American Idol finale 2004, Taco Bell Chalupa small bites passed on plates made of cinnamon sticks, and Jell-o shots made out of Bill Cosby’s tears (too soon?).


The first weekend of Coachella 2014 has come and gone, but there’s still one more weekend of music and hipsters and alcohol and drugs and questionable fashion in the desert. In LA, these two weekends in April basically means a mass exodus of folks heading out to Indio, and in certain neighborhoods (read: hipster neighborhoods), it’s eerily quiet.

And while Coachella is a music and arts festival, I feel like it’s become less about the music and more about the event itself, which celebrities you can spot, and how many artistic Instagram photos you can post. Lest we forget about all the indie rock bands and dance/rappers we’ve never heard of before? That’s what Coachella is all about. When you look at the lineup and go, ‘IS THAT EVEN A REAL BAND??’

People who are real Coachella fans get off on knowing bands before everyone else knows who they are, no matter how ridiculous the name of their band sounds. So in the spirit of putting the music back put on your flower headbands and try your hand at guessing whether the following words are real legit bands that are playing at Coachella this year, or the name of a fake club by SNL’s former city correspondent, Stefon. Good Luck! (highlight the text between the two arrows for the answer!)

Scuba

COACHELLA ⇐

Scuba, real name Paul Rose, is an EDM DJ from London.

Blitzen

⇒ STEFON ⇐

New York’s hottest holiday club is Blitzen, and right now they’re having their 12 Days of Christmas dance party. It has everything: (sung to the 12 Days of Christmas) 12 jacked albinos, 11 Little Richards, 10 piercer babies, 9 Asian Balkis, 8 gay Aladdins, 7 psychos swearing, 6 Puerto Screechers, 5 homeless Elmos. 4 coked up frogs, 3 French hens, Taylor Negron, and a human parking cone… It’s that thing were two jacked midgets paint themselves orange and you have to parallel park between them.

Jelly Bones

⇒ STEFON ⇐

Located on the Lower Upper Side, this random home invasion is the creation of legally drunk clothing designer Nick Nolte and Gabana. As you walk in, you’ll be handed a glass of champagne – or is it piss? This place has everything: Slurpies, mushmouths, litterbugs. But Don’t worry about security, because it’s guarded by an army of hobo-cops. Homeless Robocops.

Holy Ghost!

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Holy Ghost! is an American synthpop duo from Brooklyn.

Thank You!

⇒ STEFON ⇐

New York’s hottest club is Thank You! Located inside a crashing blimp, this euro trash utopia is a creation of beatnik doctor, Soulpatch Adams. And this place has everything: ziplines, fish food, that fat Hawaiian guy that no one invited, an old Pakistani woman that looks like a California raisin. And this weekend they’re having a tournament of everyones favorite trivia game: Shaun White or Bonnie Raitt. Look closely, the answer may surprise you.

Graveyard

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Graveyard is a hard rock band from Sweden with members whose real names are Axel Sjöberg, and Truls Mörck, clearly taking a page out of the Mike Schur book of fake names.

Drowners

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Drowners is a “post-punk” band from New York City. Whatever “post-punk” means.

Scampi

⇒ STEFON ⇐

Illegally parked behind the Statue of Liberty, this hate-speech haven is a creation of frat boy guru D-Bag Chopra. This place has everything: Zip drives, gozers, Ke$ha.  Is it Ryan Seacrest? No –  it’s a drowned albino who looks like Axl Rose. For the kids, there’s a special workshop where you can build a bear… but not the kind you think. There’s a VIP section filled with Furtlenecks – it’s that thing of when like, fat guys have a beard, but only on their chin roll. And they have a pack of roaming draggers. Roaming draggers? It’s that thing of when an old dog has short legs but a long penis.

Slice

⇒ STEFON ⇐

If you want fun, then listen to this: New York’s hottest club is Slice. Club promoter Gay Liotta is back, and this time he’s gone crazy. Jump in and join a dance party where you’ll see twinks, gypsies, grown men in wedding dresses, a cat from a bodega, puppets in disguise… It’s that thing like when Alf wore a trench coat, so he could go out into public.

Daughter

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Daughter is a British indie rock band, whose songs have been used on Grey’s Anatomy, Teen Wolf, and Arrow.

Poolside

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Poolside is a Los Angeles-based duo who classify themselves as “Daytime disco”. Honestly, in addition to making up band names, can these bands just make up their own genres too?

Bicep

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

British Dance DJ who has the least appealing name ever.

Push

⇒ STEFON ⇐

 

This place has everything: Ghosts, banjos, Carl Paladino, a stuck-up kitten who won’t sign autographs, furkels.
Furkels? Fat Urkels. After you’ve been with one of those guys, you’ll ask yourself “Did I do thaaaat?’

Say I Look So Good Tonight ***Beyonce Concert Fashion

Last weekend I was #blessed enough to be in the presence of these two magical creatures for two and a half hours:

It was my first time seeing Beysus in concert, and since this post will not be a concert review, I will simply say that for about the first 10 minutes of the show, I stood there in awe. I could not believe Beyonce was real. I mean I was practically in the farthest possible seat I could be from her, but still, her aura took over the entirety of the Rose Bowl and I may or may not have teared up. It’s just emotions taking me over, y’all.

Anyways, I guess I should’ve figured this going into the concert, but it didn’t hit me until we were there – Beyonce fans DRESS UP. Like of course I’ve been to other gigs where girls dress like they’re going to velvet-rope-name-on-the-list-type-of club. But the fashion at a Beyonce concert combined with the venue that is LOS ANGELES is something that is beyond your wildest. Suffice it to say, I was nearly just as in awe with the fans as I was with Bey.

me & my girl caitlin couldn’t believe what we were witnessing. note: animated speech bubbles don’t actually come out of her head.

Let’s get one thing straight folks: You are not Beyonce. You’re not Yonce. You’re not even Bey. No one comes close to Beyonce, so let’s all be honest with ourselves and remember that simple truth. This fact is not to say that you can’t channel your inner Beyonce. We all want to be talented and confident in our own skin, but you have to do you.

Before I get into these pictures, I want to make it clear I’m not posting these to shame anyone, or make fun of them. I am just utterly fascinated by this subculture of fashion. I’m not putting anyone down for being brave enough to wear some of these outfits, because more power to you. But in all honesty, these people wouldn’t have dressed like this if they didn’t want at least a few people to take note. Now that that’s out of the way…

Los Angeles is not a fashion capital like New York, but you will definitely see people dressing up just to go to the nearest Whole Foods. Like, I’d say New York is more of where new style trends begin, and LA is where people try out new trends that just end up looking stupid. Does that make sense? What do I know, I’m no fashion expert.

What I do know is that I’ve been to a lot of concerts in my life, and I understand the desire to look good. I also understand the need to fit the genre of whatever type of concert you’re going to. E.G. wearing a cowboy hat at a country music concert, looking like a hipster/hippie/inappropriate Native American at Coachella, wearing a One Direction shirt and holding a One Direction sign at a One Direction concert, etc. etc. So naturally, a lot of people at the Beyonce/Jay Z concert dressed like Beyonce (Jay Z fans are too cool to wear anything that would distinguish them as a Jay Z fan).

Take for example, Pretty Little Liars star Shay Mitchell, who attended night 2 of 2 in LA, and wore this:

Shay, a highly influential, gorgeous actress on a teen drama with 4.2 million followers on Instagram, and probably had paparazzi on her that night, did her own take on this Beyonce look, so it makes a little bit more sense to dress as she did. And then there’s the woman below, who didn’t exactly nail it like Shay or Bey. The sheer knee highs is probably the most offensive of the entire outfit, because it makes her look more like a lady of the night than one of B’s backup dancers.

Also please take note of her platform heels. This was a big thing I noticed at the concert. I’d say a good 70 to 80% of girls I saw were wearing high heels. The concert was 2 and a half hours – I stood the entire time and my feet hurt from the wedge sneakers I was wearing. By the end of the night, as everyone was scrambling through patches of dirt and grass made slightly wet from the (unusual) rain that came down for about the last hour of the concert, the heels were digging into the earth, gals were clutching onto their men for support, some were even brave enough to go barefoot, and of course there were those girls who you could just tell were dying in their heels because there were 20 paces behind their group barely walking, focusing on each step and swaying back and forth as if they were drunk (I mean, they very well could have been).

So I took the photo below from Instagram, and you can check out this guy’s insta if you want, but honestly, his caption on this pic turned from hilarious to sexist in a hot second, so I mean, do what you will. He did get some good pix though, because I saw outfits just as bad as these. The top one not only illustrates the whole grabbing on for dear life because your feet are on fire theory, but it also shows the range of outfits that the ladies wore. The woman on the far left went for a more casual look with a shirt and jeans, while the lady in red went for a nice dress, and the girl she’s supporting… needs more support on the bottom. I mean those shorts look like Spanx, amirite, ladies?

And the gal on the bottom? Yeah… remember what I said about distinguishing your own self from Beyonce? Beyonce makes it look good. She is also a 17-time Grammy winner with a multi-million dollar empire, and released this (***Flawless) video without any publicity and still had a best-selling album, so she can wear this.
Again, I’m not trying to be mean here, but all of what this guy is wearing, I’m against. Like even if Shay Mitchell was wearing it, I wouldn’t be into it.

Alright, so there was this girl in our section who basically looked like the Asian girl in your 4th grade class who wore her hair in pigtails everyday. Except IRL, this chick was probably a college student. She was wearing short overalls with a bright neon pink bikini top that is probably from the Under Armor bathing suit collection. And she did the whole one unclasped off the shoulder thing too! It was appalling. To give you an idea of what she looked like, here is Miranda Lambert holding up a fish I’m assuming she caught somewhere in the Oklahoma (again, I’m assuming).

In another example of channeling Bey, here is the Queen in that Pepsi commercial where she pulled an Orphan Black (pre-OB) and danced with different versions of herself in the funhouse mirror.

And this is a girl who can best be described as #YouTried.

All this is to say that apparently there was a world of Beyonce fashion I didn’t fully understand until last weekend, and it hit me in the face like an angry sibling in an elevator. Again, I think this is an important lesson for both women and men is to know what works best for you and your body type, what looks good and what does not. Not all of us can be as ***Flawless as Beyonce.

 Queen B thanks you for your time.

Band at Coachella or Stefon’s Favorite Club?

The first weekend of Coachella 2014 has come and gone, but there’s still one more weekend of music and hipsters and alcohol and drugs and questionable fashion in the desert. In LA, these two weekends in April basically means a mass exodus of folks heading out to Indio, and in certain neighborhoods (read: hipster neighborhoods), it’s eerily quiet.

And while Coachella is a music and arts festival, I feel like it’s become less about the music and more about the event itself, which celebrities you can spot, and how many artistic Instagram photos you can post. Lest we forget about all the indie rock bands and dance/rappers we’ve never heard of before? That’s what Coachella is all about. When you look at the lineup and go, ‘IS THAT EVEN A REAL BAND??’

People who are real Coachella fans get off on knowing bands before everyone else knows who they are, no matter how ridiculous the name of their band sounds. So in the spirit of putting the music back put on your flower headbands and try your hand at guessing whether the following words are real legit bands that are playing at Coachella this year, or the name of a fake club by SNL’s former city correspondent, Stefon. Good Luck! (highlight the text between the two arrows for the answer!)

Scuba

COACHELLA ⇐

Scuba, real name Paul Rose, is an EDM DJ from London.

Blitzen

⇒ STEFON ⇐

New York’s hottest holiday club is Blitzen, and right now they’re having their 12 Days of Christmas dance party. It has everything: (sung to the 12 Days of Christmas) 12 jacked albinos, 11 Little Richards, 10 piercer babies, 9 Asian Balkis, 8 gay Aladdins, 7 psychos swearing, 6 Puerto Screechers, 5 homeless Elmos. 4 coked up frogs, 3 French hens, Taylor Negron, and a human parking cone… It’s that thing were two jacked midgets paint themselves orange and you have to parallel park between them.

Jelly Bones

⇒ STEFON ⇐

Located on the Lower Upper Side, this random home invasion is the creation of legally drunk clothing designer Nick Nolte and Gabana. As you walk in, you’ll be handed a glass of champagne – or is it piss? This place has everything: Slurpies, mushmouths, litterbugs. But Don’t worry about security, because it’s guarded by an army of hobo-cops. Homeless Robocops.

Holy Ghost!

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Holy Ghost! is an American synthpop duo from Brooklyn.

Thank You!

⇒ STEFON ⇐

New York’s hottest club is Thank You! Located inside a crashing blimp, this euro trash utopia is a creation of beatnik doctor, Soulpatch Adams. And this place has everything: ziplines, fish food, that fat Hawaiian guy that no one invited, an old Pakistani woman that looks like a California raisin. And this weekend they’re having a tournament of everyones favorite trivia game: Shaun White or Bonnie Raitt. Look closely, the answer may surprise you.

Graveyard

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Graveyard is a hard rock band from Sweden with members whose real names are Axel Sjöberg, and Truls Mörck, clearly taking a page out of the Mike Schur book of fake names.

Drowners

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Drowners is a “post-punk” band from New York City. Whatever “post-punk” means.

Scampi

⇒ STEFON ⇐

Illegally parked behind the Statue of Liberty, this hate-speech haven is a creation of frat boy guru D-Bag Chopra. This place has everything: Zip drives, gozers, Ke$ha.  Is it Ryan Seacrest? No –  it’s a drowned albino who looks like Axl Rose. For the kids, there’s a special workshop where you can build a bear… but not the kind you think. There’s a VIP section filled with Furtlenecks – it’s that thing of when like, fat guys have a beard, but only on their chin roll. And they have a pack of roaming draggers. Roaming draggers? It’s that thing of when an old dog has short legs but a long penis.

Slice

⇒ STEFON ⇐

If you want fun, then listen to this: New York’s hottest club is Slice. Club promoter Gay Liotta is back, and this time he’s gone crazy. Jump in and join a dance party where you’ll see twinks, gypsies, grown men in wedding dresses, a cat from a bodega, puppets in disguise… It’s that thing like when Alf wore a trench coat, so he could go out into public.

Daughter

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Daughter is a British indie rock band, whose songs have been used on Grey’s Anatomy, Teen Wolf, and Arrow.

Poolside

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

Poolside is a Los Angeles-based duo who classify themselves as “Daytime disco”. Honestly, in addition to making up band names, can these bands just make up their own genres too?

Bicep

⇒ COACHELLA ⇐

British Dance DJ who has the least appealing name ever.

Push

⇒ STEFON ⇐

 

This place has everything: Ghosts, banjos, Carl Paladino, a stuck-up kitten who won’t sign autographs, furkels.
Furkels? Fat Urkels. After you’ve been with one of those guys, you’ll ask yourself “Did I do thaaaat?’

The Jennifer Lawrence Victory Tour

It’s not like I need to tell you, but today is the day, Hunger Games fans!!! We’ve waited long enough for the second installment of  THG film series and it’s finally here. One of the things I love about movies coming out is all the press the stars do before the movie comes out (albeit it’s probably horrible for the actors themselves), especially if I have a fond admiration for them. This is especially true with Jennifer Lawrence and the rest of the Hunger Games cast.

Of course, we all want J Law as our BFF, and when it comes to interviews, you never know what she’s going to say. Not to mention, she always looks flawless doing so. In honor of Catching Fire and the amazing human being that is Jennifer Lawrence, here are some of her standout moments from the (exhausting) 7-city global tour, which will undoubtedly make you love her even more.

London // November 11

Dress: Christian Dior Couture (basically that’s all she wore/wears, which makes sense since she is their muse)

When the cast turned into dinosaurs

But then loved each other because they’re cute

It’s like finding money in your rented Dior coat, but better.

and then you throw them at your bff

JLaw being a perfect angel by approaching a Make-A-Wish kid at the premiere.

Berlin // November 12

Making practical look cool in Paris since ’87 (Dior)

Madrid// November 13

Photo Call: the perfect time to wear something other than Dior. One of my faves from this promo tour – Alexander McQueen

En la noche – mas Dior.

Rome // November 14

Love this Proenza Schouler dress from the Rome photo call!

breaking shippers hearts

Dior’s dresses come complete with a silver medallion placed randomly on the bottom!

If you’re a bird, I’m a bird.

A fan but a book on a rope and lowered it down to Jen for her to sign. Brilliant, really.

Paris // November 15

Dare I say this goth-like Dior look was perhaps my favorite??

annndddd side boob

Los Angeles // November 18

I was a little surprised when Jennifer came out of her car with this number. If you may recall from the Emmys, Julianne Hough wore a semi-similar dress, which I proceeded to put on my worst dressed list. HOWEVER, J Law is pulling this look off, and design wise, it’s just wayyyy better than the Jenny Packham one Julianne wore. Still not my personal fave, but she looks great.

JLaw was sick this night and didn’t do any interviews, but still had time to meet the fans – while they cheered her on.

Not reallly JLaw related, but can you even with Josh and Liam??

New York // November 20

The final Dior look!

Best photobomb ever.


Jennifer yelling like the photographers

Clearly there’s a story to this. Click here.

Highlights from her 4 million interviews


Perhaps my favorite interview from them all – I’ve legit watched this like 5 times already. It’s a problem.

Second favorite interview – more games with the cast! AND it’s a two parter! Check it on Yahoo!


If you’re not familiar with Unscripted, get ready to waste hours of your life catching up.

Cuddling up in a blanket with David Letterman, natch. Watch the interview here!

“Would you rather switch roles with Sam Claflin or Jena Malone?”
“Sam.”
Interview with MTV News

No go forth and enjoy Catching Fire, fellow Tributes!!

Eating that bomb Arclight caramel corn

People Like Us: How I Learned to Work the Streets

Welcome back to People Like Us! Today, we’re featuring Eva Gross, or as she also likes to go by, E.W. Gross. Eva and I met when we were forced to be roommates while studying abroad in the Netherlands. Turns out that whoever is in charge of assigning roommates should also be matchmakers, because we became instant friends, and have been BFFs ever since!

jumpin in front of dunder mifflin

While she majored in Writing, Literature and Publishing in college, Eva’s had a slew of unique jobs – from development associate at a legal center, a baker for thousands at a camp in Colorado, and a writer for a web series. And now she’s gracing us with her presence on Cookies + Sangria, sharing a fantastic story about working on a food truck in Los Angeles.

Follow Eva on her official blog or on our joint jumping picture tumblr – Jumpin’ Jams.

~~~~~

I’m a writer at heart and a baker by profession, which is a weird but fortuitous combination, as I’ve conveniently insulated myself from ever being a truly starving artist. Literally or metaphorically.

When I moved to Los Angeles in the fall to pursue a writing career, I naturally thought I could bake to pay the bills while I tried to trick important people into reading my screenplay (as I’ve been told is the way to fame).

Like many these days, I went through a long stretch of unemployment. I turned down a few jobs I maybe should have taken, including a graveyard shift baking job, and was at a point of sheer desperation when I stumbled upon an interesting Craigslist ad. It was for a pizza maker, experience with dough preferable. It wasn’t ideal but I was intrigued. Ok, their website was really cool. I judged the book buy it’s social media cover.

So I replied to the ad. We set up an interview with a small but important caveat: I was to meet the truck in a parking lot. TBD. I met them after the lunch rush in a company’s parking lot in Santa Monica. I had to pass a security guard who must have thought I was attempting some sort of heist when I couldn’t answer his simple question of where my interview was taking place.

Before long I found myself aboard The Urban Oven, a chalkboard clad gourmet pizza truck roaming the streets of Los Angeles in search of the perfect lunch crowd. On my first day we met along a stretch of street in front of the Variety building of Mid-Wilshire along with six or seven other food trucks. I was given a tour, which was quick for obvious reasons as there wasn’t more than seventeen feet worth of space to explain. I was also given the rundown on food truck culture.

And this is where it gets really interesting.

Turns out there is a tenuous bond between food truckers as both competition and brethren.

Precedent allows for a barter system called the “food swap,” an exchange of meals in good faith. I ate many a Vietnamese fusion sandwich, Bahn Mi and giant, chocolate-coated ice cream ball in payment for our pizza of the day.

My first day on the job I was also informed that more competitive trucks, in the eternal struggle for parking, would actually attempt to “nudge” another truck out of the way. Or at least just a tinsy bit forward so their own tail wasn’t in the red.

Then, of course, there’s life on board the actual truck. Things can get a little hectic when your work area is roughly the size of your own personal space. I was hit in the head with a pizza peel on more than one occasion. When it gets busy, pizza and people fly, bump and jostle each other in a commotion that from the outside can look a bit insane. It just somehow works.

Which is, of course, the basis of the food truck craze in general. It just works. The owners of these trucks risk their livelihood daily on location, parking and menu choices. They are in the unique position to serve the homeless and Jason Bateman alike. These passionate people are what make the food truck phenomenon irresistible. As Scott, the owner of The Urban Oven, says often “It’s the American dream in action.” I would add it’s the American dream reinvented, moving forward and sometimes even defying traffic.

Odd Celebrity Run-Ins I’ve Had

Here’s a myth about living in Los Angeles: I see celebrities all the time. I do see them occasionally, but it’s not like I see one every day. However, when I do see one, it’s usually in the oddest of places and involves an awkward exchange of words. Here are some that come to mind.

Mario Lopez

Okay, this is technically way before I lived here, but a good story nonetheless. I was visiting family here in 2003, and I got tickets to see American Idol. I went with my dad, who honestly, I don’t think he had any idea what was going on, but I also made a sign that said, ‘I came all the way from Rochester, NY to see Justin win’. Yeah. Justin Guarini. Anyways, during commercials, the audience warm up guy announced that Mario Lopez was in the audience. I naturally freaked out because if there is any TV series that encapsulates my youth, it’s Saved by the Bell. So I got the balls to go up to him (because other girls were doing the same thing too) and I asked him for his autograph on a piece of paper ripped from a small notebook of the gal behind me in line. There he was, AC Slater, flashing his smile and dimples at me. He asked me what my name was and I said, ‘Traci’. He said oh how do you spell that? And I was all ‘T-R-A-C-I’, but apparently said it really fast, because he looked confused and it literally said, “To Traici, Love Mario Lopez.” To make it worse, I told him how much I love SBTB and how I’ve seen every episode, to which he smiled again and I ran away like a little girl.

Mindy Kaling

My friends and I were at Yogurtland, a popular self serve fro-yo place. We were sitting outside eating and I thought I spotted Talan from Laguna Beach go inside. I came up with a reason to get napkins just to see if it was in fact him. Turns out it wasn’t. Also turned out that the dispenser was out of napkins, and since I needed them anyways, I decided to go up to the cashier to ask for some. When I went up there, there was only one cashier, and I let her know that they were out of napkins. And then a line started forming and it took waayy too long and I started feeling guilty about just getting fake napkins. I said outloud, “You’d think they’d have more than one person working here, right?” Then a voice next to me said, “I know right?” Yeah, that person that responded to my offhand comment was Mindy Kaling. I ran away like a little girl.

Damien from Mean Girls

Ironically at the same Yogurtland, but a different time, I saw Damien (Daniel Franzese) with some girl. I think I was staring at him for too long because we made eye contact and he looked at me with some concern. A year later I saw him handing out flyers for a theater during a Christmas open house.

Jon Heder aka Napoleon Dynamite

I was picking up food I ordered from my favorite restaurant, Aroma cafe. There’s a TV behind the registers that usually plays old timey movies, and the one that was playing that day was a really odd one that was super low-budge and featured some woman with a huge gold headdress. While I was waiting to pick up my food, the guy next to me said, what movie is this? The cashier said it’s called She. And without even thinking that I shouldn’t be part of the conversation, I said, ‘She? That’s the name of it? So weird.’ Then the guy next to me looked at me and nodded in agreement before saying something else, and I realized I made small talk with Napoleon Dynamite.

Whitney Port

My friend Thom was visiting us in LA, and my roommate Meghan and I took him to one of the greatest cupcake places/tourist spots in the city – Sprinkles. This place is so popular that there is always a line out the door at the Beverly Hills location, but it’s so worth it. While waiting in line, a couple girls got out of a car and came up to us frantically saying, ‘We need a guy to sing happy birthday to!’ and I was like ‘Holy crap, that’s Whitney from The Hills! Slash it’s actually Thom’s birthday!!’ I immediately pointed to Thom, but he was having none of it and she’s like do you want to do it? We’re in a scavenger hunt and I need to sing happy birthday to a guy.’ Thom said no and she moved on. Ugh come on!

Tim Allen

At the stationery store I used to work at, a lot of celebs would come in looking for assistance, and I would have to act cool. I’d say the biggest star to come in was Tim Allen. At the time, I was by myself, and on the phone with a customer. Then I heard a man say, ‘excuse me’ and I turned around and it was Tim the toolman Taylor. He started asking me about an ink refill for his pen, and I promptly came up with an excuse to call the customer on the phone back. We didn’t have what he wanted, but he and his daughter ended up buying some stuff anyways. When he was checking out he said, “I’ll Paper your Goose.” The name of our store was Paper Goose.

Duck Lips

Duck Lips then…

Duck Lips now…

L.A. isn’t really known for its walkability. Everyone here drives. So often when there’s someone walking across the street illegally, I turn on the road rage. Last month, this very thing happened. I was coming to a stop in traffic when this guy just runs across the street to his car. I thought he looked familiar, like he went to my college or something because he looked super hipster and that’s my natural train of thought in LA – Emerson or celebrity? And thanks to Molly’s previous Full House where are they now post, I realized it was the guy who played Duck Lips on Full House who illegally crossed the street in front of my car. How rude.

The Longest Relationship I’ve Been In Has Made Me Reflect On My Life

The year was 1995 *cue old grandpa voice*, I was on a field trip during summer day camp at the local roller skating rink, Horizon Fun FX. We were playing one of those mandatory group games which requires going to four corners or something, idk. All I knew was that I wanted out immediately because I’m not that good at skating and I don’t like group games. I’m also not good at summer camp. Anyways, my younger Kindergarten friend ended up winning said game, and her “prize” was a cassette tape single of Backstreet Boys’ We’ve Got it Goin’ On (looking back, it was clearly free promo swag that Horizon needed to give away, not a special once in a lifetime prize like I thought). Kindergarten friend came up to me and said, “I don’t want this, do you?” I looked at her incredulously and said, “BACKstreet Boys?? I’ve heard of BLACKstreet, but not BACKstreet.”

Cut to me buying the very CD We’ve Got It Goin’ On was featured on, and me looking like this for the next few (18) years:

Since that summer’s day in ’95, I went to every single concert tour, lined my childhood bedroom with posters and clippings from teen magazines, purchased every piece of paraphernalia you can think of, voted incessantly for their music videos on TRL, and even used to buy two copies of each album – one in CD format and one in cassette format, because you know, just in case. Basically I was the epitome of a teenybopper. Perhaps it was your worst nightmare, but it was some of the best days of my life.

I’ve stayed a fan to this day, and although I don’t get as fangirl-y as I used to, the excitement is still there. These five boys have really been only one the most constant presences in my life. Friends have come and gone over the years, but my love for their music and how it makes me feel has never left.

The guys celebrated their 20th anniversary on April 20th (yes, you’re/we’re that old), and I was lucky enough to attend a special fan celebration they held here in Hollywood. I got there about two hours early, waiting in the hot LA sun with a bunch of girls/women my age, who had also grown up with them. People were wearing shirts from tours past, and someone in front of me even put to use an old BSB branded metal lunchbox (which I also had, but did not bring with me) as a purse. After hours of waiting, we were clearly hot, thirsty, hungry, and all waayy too old to be doing this shit anymore. The atmosphere has since changed since my first BSB concert back in 1999. More people were looking for seats to sit down in rather than rushing towards the front of the stage, and alcoholic beverages were being thrown back everywhere you look. But the feeling is still there – we were all excited to see the Backstreet Boys.

To add to the 20th anniversary celebration, the boys also received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame that following Monday. Obviously this is a big deal for any entertainer, but as each of them went up to speak at the ceremony, you could tell that this meant a great deal to them. For all but one (stoic Howie D) was overcome with emotion and brought to tears with the long journey it’s taken to arrive at that very moment.

AJ (my boo) said, “Aside from my wedding day and the birth of my daughter, this is by far the best day in my life.”

Kevin, who if you don’t know, left the group circa 2006 and officially rejoined this year, added, “Who would have thought 20 years ago, when we began this journey together that this would be a stop along the way? The first time the five of us sang together it was a Boyz II Men song. We picked up those harmonies and that was it. It was on.” (Feel free to listen, and not watch because they look horrendous, to their a cappella cover of End of the Road)

And guess whose star is planted right next to theirs? Yup, Boyz II Men.

As I watched the live stream of the ceremony, I too was brought to tears, not only because I cry easily, but because I felt like I was going through the same emotions they were. They’ve gone through surgeries, breakups, rehab, a man swindling millions from them, marriage, babies, and more – and they never could have imagined that they would be among those forever cemented in Hollywood history.

backstreet-boys-600

That day at work, I was wrote a story about one of the big entertainment news items of the day: BSB getting a star on the walk of fame. There I was, scrolling through professional press pictures of these five guys, whose faces were plastered all over my walls and notebooks and anything else you can imagine. I couldn’t help but think the same thing Kevin thought, “Who would have thought 18 years ago, when I got that cassette tape that I would be getting paid to write about my favorite band?”

I was hit with an incredible sense of surrealism. I started off the day watching the live stream of the Walk of Fame ceremony on my computer in my apartment, had to leave for work, so I streamed it on my phone because I’m insane, and literally drove past a closed off Hollywood Boulevard because they were getting their star, only to arrive to my place of employment where I was being compensated to spout off my BSB knowledge? This can’t be my life.

I know this all sounds really cheesy, so thanks for sticking with me this far. But in that moment of realization, I felt incredibly #blessed and thankful that a nine-year-old fangirl from Rochester, NY could make it to Los Angeles and have a veritable dream job that allows me to write this stuff. I try my best not to sound jaded or show off-y or cynical about my job or life in general, but everything that I’ve done, everywhere I’ve been in the past 18 years was worth all the worrying – the crying, the ‘what the fuck am I gonna do next’ questions – because it led to something that is perfect for me.

At the ceremony, the guys chose “superfan” Lori Meono to say a little speech on behalf of the fans. She said, “They have created the soundtrack for my most memorable moments… from braces to bridal showers, to Happy Meals and heartbreaks, the Backstreet Boys have been there consistently through it all.”

And it’s true. It’s why you’ll see fans waiting overnight and lined up around the block in order to attend the 20th Anniversary party. If BSB isn’t your jam, replace it with another music group, a favorite sports team, what have you. They have helped you get through things in a way no one else could, and induced joy and happiness that is incomparable. Being a Backstreet Boys fan hasn’t always been easy since a lot of people don’t take them seriously, and I get that. But I would never take back the past 18 years of my life. They’ve been the only thing I’ve consistently followed and liked for nearly two decades, and really, has been the longest relationship of my life. As much as the boys have grown up since 1993, their fans have too. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

The Coachella Exodus

For two weeks in Los Angeles, all you will hear is whether people are going to Coachella or not. It’s literally a mass hipster exodus out of the city, and everyone heads out to the middle of nowhere in Indio, California. For $300 a ticket, you can stand out in the hot desert, drink, do drugs, spot celebs, and wear ridiculous outfits, all while watching the best of indie bands play at various stages. And I don’t know if it’s because I didn’t really not it existed before I moved to LA, or that in general the festival just got more popular, but it is a big deal out here. Like all over your Facebook and Twitter feeds type thing.

I’ve never been, nor do I ever want to, unless it’s free and I would be guaranteed a spot in an air conditioned tent with real bathrooms. I’m making all my assumptions based on photos and videos I’ve seen in the past, but the idea of being that close to sweaty annoying people is my worst nightmare, but I commend the people who can put up with that sort of thing.

And by people, I mean there is definitely a certain type of crowd that goes to Coachella. You have your hardcore hipster types that actually want to see all the bands playing there. Then you have these people:

These people are REAL. Paying $800 for a VIP ticket to see “GOTyah” is absurd, but people do it. But in all fairness, the Coachella lineup reads like a list of names that come up on one of those online band name generators, so you’d have to be pretty legit to know a lot of them. In fact, take this quiz and see if you’re worthy enough to head to Coachella. Unfortunately I got a 0 – “Listens to the Radio”. Well, I guess it’s fate that me and Coachella are never meant to be…