Sunday, April 24, 2011

Bossypants Review

     One thing I really liked about Bossypants by Tina Fey is that it was written by a writer. You know she didn't have help with it, or have it ghost-written like some biographies are, and you don't have to suffer through bad writing because the subject was determined to write it herself. (I'm not sure if that ever happens, but whatever.) It was a very engaging and funny read, because she is a skilled writer, and she can convey comedic timing and tone and all those things through writing. It sort of felt like you were just sitting beside an old crazy woman on a plane and your headphones broke so you had to listen to her tell you her life story, and it was funny and weird and entertaining. In the best way. 

I think the paragraph that best sums up the book is this one:

"On September 3, 2008, then governor Palin accepted the vice presidential nomination. Around this same time, Oprah formally agreed to be on 30 Rock, and it was determined that my daughter's third-birthday party would have a Peter Pan theme. Each of these events was equally important in my life."

This paragraph shows how the book tries to balance Fey's life as a family member, her life as a writer/TV producer, and her life as an actor, and how they all co-exist in not just the book, but in her actual life, though sometimes not peacefully.

     Bossypants is just what you'd expect from Fey: comedy, mostly self-deprecating, honesty, and quirkiness together in one big, hairy-armed package. (If you've seen the cover, you'll get it. If not, check the bottom of this post.)
     It was cool hearing about her SNL days because c'mon that is just the coolest job, and she has worked with some amazing people, but she didn't talk so much about that. And Mean Girls only got the odd passing mention ('I named this character after my friend from high school who I'm telling you a story about.')
     What you end up getting is Fey's personal history, growing up in small town Pennsylvania, intermixed with advice, both real and fake, and some funny anecdotes about her TV career.

My favourite parts included, in no particular order.:

The stories of her time at the YMCA. I liked this for a few reasons. 
1. I think it is universally relatable because most people have had a completely soul-sucking job that they had to do just for the money and no matter how hard they tried to find the positivity it just kept on sucking every day
2. It was funny.
And 3. Most people probably wouldn't include a story like this in their book because it makes them look like an a-hole but Fey just straight-up says "That makes me sound like a jerk, I know." and ends the chapter. She's not afraid to seem like a real human being. 
     In fact, there are a lot of stories in here that make Fey seem like kind of an a-hole but she sometimes says " well, here's my side of it." to justify it and sometimes she just says "well that was dumb" and lets it go. It strikes the reader as very honest, the ability she has to own up to stuff and just be completely truthful not only with herself, but with her readers.

Any time she offers advice on anything. Such as:
- The rules of improv and how she applies them to her life (serious and actually helpful)
- Beauty advice (satirical but helpful in the way satire often is in that it makes you think)
- her list of things she learned from Lorne Michaels
- What to do to have a successful photoshoot (part satire and part serious, actually helpful)
- advice on breastfeeding vs. Formula (satirical but still helpful.)

When she responds to internet people's questions/comments about her.

How nice she is about her friends and how she doesn't mention any d-bags or a-holes by name. Just a classy gal.

The chapter titles. Top Four Favourites:
4. Sarah, Oprah, and Captain Hook, or How to Succeed by Sort of Looking Like Someone. 
3. There's a Drunk Midget in My House. 
2. My Honeymoon, or A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again Either. 
1. Peeing in Jars With Boys.

     Overall, Bossypants is an awesome book. It's funny, there are some great stories in there, and it really does offer some good advice and perspective on things like gender politics, modern ideas of beauty, parenting, how to be a successful woman in a man's world, and how to look awesome in a white denim suit.

I don't have a rating system, just read it.


                                                              Click on the book to buy it.

Books Read So Far in 2011: 11
Currently Reading: Unbearable Lightness by Portia De Rossi. 

Friday, April 22, 2011

Music Nostalgia

*Sorry I didn't update all week. I just haven't been feeling too inspired lately, and had a surprisingly busy week considering all I have going on right now is working part time. I was planning to catch up on some blog posts this weekend but a family emergency has taken me out of the province at the last minute so not sure I will be able to update much, but I wrote a little something in the car today (Don't worry, I wasn't driving) and I thought I'd share it. Also I have a book review coming probably next week and I will give some book updates next post but not right now. Anyways, here's the thing I wrote. *

     Lately I've been really disenchanted with music, which is so sad.
     I've been driving a car with no CD player, just a tape player, so I've been listening to the radio in my car, and listening to it at work. Which sucks. I only hear Top 40 songs which is like chewing a stick of sugar-free gum when what you need is a hearty steak. (Can steaks be hearty? I'm a vegetarian. The metaphor still works, I think.)
     In my actual life (meaning, separate from work and driving my car) I've just been listening to stuff that's so familiar it's almost boring. (as is evidenced by my latest blog post, in which the playlist is comprised mostly of songs I loved in high school.)
     Also, I spilled alfredo sauce in my bag a couple weeks ago and my iPod (Jive Maestro) suffered so I don't like listening to it now because the button sticks/doesn't work and it's annoying.
     I haven't really discovered any bands lately, either. I haven't browsed iTunes' store to see what's free or cheap or just what's new, and I used to do that at least weekly. I haven't bought any music (like physical CDs) since my favourite CD store closed down. It was the best. It was in my end of the city, in the mall I worked in for 3 years. I'd been going there since high school, I knew people who worked there, and they had stuff I liked and they could order stuff in but now it's closed. There's only 2 places to really buy CDs in my city now, and both are inconvenient to get to, expensive, and just don't have that intimate, personal, community vibe that the old place had. So that's a bummer.
     I haven't been searching stuff out lately. I miss the feeling I used to get when I would hear a song by a band I'd never heard of and just love it. And immediately after hearing it, buy or download the album.
    Like Figurines. or Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. Or going back to high school, Regina Spektor or The Shins.
     Some of my favourite bands are bands that nobody introduced me to, I just discovered them. And no, this isn't some hipster-y "I only like bands I discover before they become popular" thing. Because I'll admit I didn't know about The Shins until after Garden State came out, but just that sense of personal discovery and importance a song or band can give you.
     I love when people recommend music to me (I especially love when people make me CDs or playlists...usually if you just spam your facebook page with music links I will pass them by, but if it's personal I like it) but there's something so awesome about discovering a song for yourself. It's your song, and you can share it with whoever you want and associate it with whatever you want. Okay, now this is sounding hipster-y and snobby.
    The point is that I want to get back into music. It's a hobby and a passion and I feel so bored with it lately and I need some new band or song to obsess over. No recommendations, please. (Kidding, of course. I always welcome recommendations...even with all I just said.)

 "What I wake up I look into the mirror.
I can see a clearer vision.
I should start livin' today
'cause today is gonna be the gonna be the day."
-"The Day", The Roots.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Purple Hair

Remember that time in Gilmore Girls when Lane Kim dyed her hair purple for like 20 minutes?
Well...I did that! except I didn't dye it back my natural colour immediately afterwards.

My whole head isn't purple, unlike Lane's. We streaked it using a cap. I didn't like the cap.

Even though my friend told me it would hurt a lot, it didn't. It hurt a little when she pulled the hair through, but not THAT much. And it didn't hurt at all when we took the cap off.

What it looked like wet.

What it looked like (mostly) dry. It's very subtle in most lighting, which I like. 

love the bangs.

Like I said, it's subtle in most light (yellow light) but the fluorescent light in my closet (white light) makes it look like this.

And that's the end of my narcissistic blog post about my hair. Hope you enjoyed. 
Back to regularly scheduled programming later this week.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Hey gurl heeeey. (or guy).
How was your week? Mine was great.
Last Sunday I got a pet fish. He is a betta. His tank is small.

He is cute and prettily coloured. His name is Sam, after Sam Beam. (my boyfriend's name suggestion)

Then on Monday night I went to the Mother Mother concert here. Long time readers of this blog will know that I am a big fan. It was probably the 6th or 7th time I've seen them live, they come here a lot. and they always put on an AMAZING show. I went with friends who had never seen them live before so that was exciting. On the car ride there I asked my two friends which songs they hoped they'd play. I said Wrecking Ball. My one friend said Hayloft and the other one said Ghosting. They played all three, of course. It was awesome. My favourite thing about Mother Mother is that they are such a tight band. Hearing them live is just like hearing them on their record, except for the energy is even better because it's a live show. But every guitar lick, every harmony, every lyric is just THERE. They just appreciate music and the make the audience love it too.

Also, I bought this shirt.

This is a unisex XS. It's a sweet shirt, but my guy friend bought the same one and it looks better on that's flattering. Haha.

Last week I went to some other concerts (ones that my boyfriend was in at the university) and just worked on a lot of homework. 
     I also finished up my three week block at a school. I won't say what school I was working at or who I was with or anything, I will just say it could not have been a better experience. The teacher I was working with, the classmate I was partnered with, the school, the community, and the students were all AWESOME. We got to teach whatever we wanted basically, just to experiment, we built relationships with the students and staff, and each other (the girl I was working with and I were only sort-of friends/aquaintances before and now we're really close so that's awesome.)
     I made a video montage for her, but I'm not going to share it because there are students in it, and other staff members, and it says the name of the school and stuff, so....I'll just say it was great. On the last day, we made a little presentation at the staff meeting to thank the school and we gave them a card, and then they gave us STAFF mugs! It was awesome. We gave a card and present to our co-op teacher and she gave us each a little digital timer (which is a must-have in an English classroom, to time silent reading, work periods, whatever. Just so useful. and now I have my own.) Then we went for lunch with some staff members and the teacher we were working with bought us lunch. Then I had to go to some conference thingy but I got to hand in all my homework to my prof, so that felt great. Then I went to the campus bar with some friends. 
     And then it's just been a big celebration time since then pretty much. Hung out with friends on Friday, went out on Saturday. And since then I've just been hanging out with people I haven't seen in a while, catching up on sleep, watching movies, lazing about, etc.

Also, on Thursday these shirts came in the mail.

They are sweet. Also, this one that I bought for my friend for his birthday.

So...uhh...that's pretty much it. Everything I would have been blogging about last week if I had a normal blog where I just blog about my life and stuff. I have some cool things in the works for this blog and a surprising post coming probably on Thursday, so look for those.

And have a great week! I'm gonna go eat lunch with my awesome sister who just called me. Sweet! Bye.

Books Read So Far in 2011: 9
Currently Reading: still need to finish that manuscript, and re-reading Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger