Thursday, July 28, 2011

I'll Cover You

Not everyone loves covers. But not everyone’s cool like me, so it kind of makes sense. I can appreciate a good cover when I hear one. I feel, though, to actually be considered a quality cover, the subsequent recording artist should take the original and put their own spin on it, to add an extra layer of interest to a song some (or many) already know. The cover doesn’t necessarily need to improve upon the original, but it should be at least AS GOOD AS the first time around.
Here’s an example of a good cover:
The original was performed by The Penguins (1954).
Sometimes, though, a cover can be bad. Seriously, if it’s not even as good as the original, don’t bother. This one is awful:

Since this one initially came out in 1965, during a time of genuine social/political turmoil, I feel like Hilary Duff’s cover is just offensive.
Sometimes, the cover eventually exceeds the fame of the original. “Tainted Love” is a perfect example, i.e., did you know it was originally sung by Gloria Jones (1964)? I only even knew about the Soft Cell version.
 Also, I love, love, love this one:

Got any super-cool covers for me?

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Boy Stuff vs. Girl Stuff

Growing up, I felt like there was stuff that boys knew how to do, and stuff that girls knew how to do. I’m not sure why I thought this (TV?). My own parents broke the very model I was thinking of; my mom is not really a cooker or a cleaner and my dad doesn’t give a crap about technology. (I would say “Sorry, Mom and Dad!” but I am 99% sure they don’t read this.) Regardless of their example, I thought that when I found the man I planned to marry, he would be the in-house expert on cars, tools, and all computer-type devices. Wrong. Dead wrong. The last time I had a car issue, JP told me to take a picture of it with my phone and send it to his friend with the message: “What should I do about this?” Also, despite the fact he works in tech support, I’m pretty sure we have the exact same level of computer-y knowledge, i.e., we’ll try to restart and if that doesn’t work, our next step is the Genius Bar.
It’s cool, though. Other than his proclivity for ladders, John Paul is actually kind of a neat freak. And while I do all the in-house cooking, he’s the only one who can work the grill (although I think part of why he won’t teach me is so I’ll keep him around). This all came up, though, because I think it’s really neat when people can do basic carpentry projects for their homes (too many eps of Trading Spaces, I’m sure), and I’d really like John Paul to get into carpentry so he can build us some bookshelves or something. I kept hassling him to add tools to our wedding registry, thinking that if he had the tools, maybe he would just be able to teach himself. But I finally realized that if I want some homemade book shelves, I’m just going to have to figure out how to build them myself.  Let’s be honest, I’m going to look like a BAMF when I finally manage to properly wield a power saw. It will be more BA, of course, if I manage to properly maintain my fingers in the process.
This is (hopefully) me in the future. Haha. I am still leery of using said saw.
Anyone else misled by this gender dichotomy?

Monday, July 25, 2011

Office Space

Here is a question for you, blog readers: How close are you and your coworkers? For example, I am friendly with people in my department. We get lunch sometimes during the week and occasionally will get together for a movie sometimes after work. We have fun, and then we go to our respective places of residence.
John Paul, however, is way too close to his coworkers. Actually, I don’t know if he’s way too close to them or they’re just way too pushy. On Friday night, for example, JP and four of his coworkers all rode together down to Sweetwater for the beer tour. Fun times. Then they all came back to our area and got dinner at a local Mexican restaurant. Still okay. Afterwards, JP is all like, “See you guys later!” and they’re all, “No way. Now we’re hanging out at your house.” And that’s where I found them three hours later, getting ridiculously drunk because they’d decided they were all spending the night (except the guy who doesn’t drink/ironically lives within walking distance). It probably wouldn’t have even been that bad except this one guy is pretty much perpetually ornery and is weirdly always ready to fight. He told me he “had a lot of stuff he could say to me,” but wouldn’t, he said, because he wanted to be invited back. Additionally, on a previous visit, he and JP were in a disagreement and the guy tackled him in our kitchen. What the crap?! I feel like adults should not fight (physically or otherwise) in one another’s homes, but maybe that’s just me.
Is this tale weird to anyone else? Or do your coworkers often sleep over and/or battle it out in your home? Any 'my coworker is weirder than your coworker' tales would be welcome. It's a Monday.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Life Organized Neatly

My roommate moved out yesterday. Did I tell you I had a roommate? It was just for eight weeks. He is my college friend who was doing a law internship in Atlanta and wanted to live closer to work than his parents’ house in Marietta/at 26, who really wants to live with their parents all summer? But now he is gone, and I am blue. JP says this is dumb because Trey (roommate) was rarely around due to mandatory law firm social events (?) and that not living with him will be about the same as living with him. This is true and very practical (aside: JP often refers to himself as “a practical Warrick”), but I will still miss the opportunity to watch episodes of True Blood together and discuss our collegiate shenanigans.
Oh, well. Maybe now I can convince JP to finish painting the study. Practical Warrick himself started painting one wall the week before Trey moved in and hasn’t picked up a brush since. I think he was trying to blame it on the fact Trey was living in the guest room limiting the space he had to spread out his painting supplies. I’m not 100% on what this has to do with anything. It’s driving me nuts, though; not because I’m super clean or anything, but because every time I go into the study to try and find something I have to step through, over, and around ladders, paint cans, drop cloths, et al. My dream is to model my life after this blog. (Or at least the opposite of this.) Particularly when I go into certain stores and the way things are organized in conjunction with the lighting and music makes them feel so much more restful than my house. What is that about? I wish I lived in a Pottery Barn. Or even a Fresh Market.
Disregard that ladder on the right. Who put that there? JP??
Do you ever wish you lived in a professionally designed space? If you did, where would all your stuff go?

Friday, July 15, 2011

Having My Cake (But Not) Eating It Too

For the most part, I am really enjoying wedding planning. Yeah, it’s kind of a hassle, but it will all be worth it in the end, right? RIGHT?!
I don’t have a problem contacting (and re-counting) each of my seemingly endless vendors.
I don’t mind going over the minutiae that will likely go unnoticed by everyone but me.
And I only have the teensiest problem with sending my mother the same email eight times because she’s not technologically savvy enough to track down any of the previous seven.
The one thing that really does bug me, though, is how much I miss baking.
I love to bake. I lurve it. I think it is fun, and delicious, and everything that is good in life. And I have put myself on a baking hiatus through the end of September. I mean, it’s not like I think a cookie or two will keep me from zipping up my dress or anything, I just know myself, and I know that I have absolutely no self control where homemade baked goods are concerned. For example, if I bake 24 cookies, I will personally eat 20 of them. YIKES. And that kind of cookie binge could keep a girl from fitting into her clothes.
So, alas, I will just pine over the delicious desserts I want to make that show up in my google reader. Like this one. And this one. And…sigh. Maybe when this is all over, we can get together and have one big dessert-fest. I am definitely in.

Thursday, July 14, 2011


Are you as excited as I am? I am pumped, but I am a little bummed that I don’t have a bunch of people to be excited with. For example, when the final book in the series came out, I was interning at Southern Progress in Birmingham. Not only did I have a whole slew of fellow interns to be excited with, but my entire department (Corporate Comm/Legal) went to the midnight release party at Borders. It was so festive! I think the corporate library (I have no idea why that was a thing) even threw a Harry Potter theme party for everyone. My friend Erin was the library intern at the time, and I remember she had to run around SPC’s wooded campus to find enough wand-like branches to give out as favors. Ha!
Over the past few days, I’ve been emailing my college friends to discuss their plans for the final film installment. Most are going to tonight’s midnight screening and several are making HP-themed treats and/or watching all of the previous movies in preparation for tonight’s final chapter. As for me, I’m seeing it with a friend Friday night—sans costumes, sans butterbeer, sans HP movie marathons! I am all about themed events, but it’s hard to get really jazzed up about something that everyone in your immediate vicinity feels kind of “meh” about. Where are the fans?? Are there super-secret HP parties in Atlanta that I just don’t know about???
Seriously, Atlanta friends, let me know.
And in honor of Music Thursday:

Monday, July 11, 2011

We Built This Show on Rock and Roll

I ushered for the Broadway musical Rock of Ages last week. This is relevant to your interest (possibly) not just because it’s a musical but also because it’s a show that takes popular 80s rock songs and plots a story around them. Because of this, I found the songs to be really good but the story to be really ridiculous. For those of you who have seen Mamma Mia or Movin’ Out, you know how silly a story can get when it’s cobbled together from existing music.
Overall, the show was pretty entertaining. The lead role was played by Constantine Maroulis, a finalist from season four of “American Idol”, and he was fabulous. I’m not really an “American Idol” fan, but this guy had both talent and stage presence, making him very fun to watch. The actress who played his romantic counterpart was also good. Apparently she previously won one of those casting reality shows in Canada based on The Sound of Music called “How Do You Solve a Problem like Maria?”. Haha. I wish they would air that here.
The show was not so good, however, that producers should rush a screen version into immediate production to be released in 2012, which is exactly what happened. It seems like they’re just trying to cash in on the current trend of musical-type shows based on already familiar music, e.g. “Glee”. Also, while a movie version could be really cool, the current casting outlook looks like a bunch of big names not necessarily appropriate for the roles. For example, Tom Cruise is slated to be the wildly sexy lead singer of an 80s hair band. I cannot think of someone less appropriate. The rest of the casting news is here. My favorite comment is: “It's like [Director] Adam Shankman hasn't even seen the Broadway show!” Yes. Yes, it is like that.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Movie Time

OMG! My days are out of whack. I seriously feel like I’m losing my marbles here. I have been in and out of town so much this past month, I feel like any sort of normal routine has abandoned me.
That stress vented, I guess I can discuss the two (!) movies I saw last week. I normally don’t catch two movies at the theater in a single week, but I had two movie dates with two different friends on back to back days, so it just sort of happened. I guess I could have tried to consolidate dates/friends, but I think it would have been a weird combination, so…
Going in, I felt about Super 8 the way I initially felt about District 9 (it didn’t seem like my kind of thing, but a lot of people said it was good, so…). Anyway, I loved it. I would recommend it to anyone. It’s about this group of kids in the 70s who get together to make monster movies, and who, while filming one night, encounter a real-life monster. The crazy kid antics make it feel like The Goonies, and the monster stuff is just the right amount of suspenseful. Let’s call it a quality summer blockbuster.
This was funny in a different way than I expected. It’s the one where Cameron Diaz is AWFUL middle school teacher who is trying to marry money so she can quit her job. Her opportunity comes along in the form of secretly wealthy substitute teacher (?) Justin Timberlake, who she has to woo away from her rival, “perfect” teacher, Amy Squirrel (played by Lucy Punch). I thought it was going to be all dirty jokes, but it was more awkward characters being awkward a la SNL. A lot of parts were pretty funny, but several parts weren’t, so conclusion: funny, albeit uneven. Also, somebody in my theater brought their toddler (?!), and everyone knew it because the toddler kept making sounds that I translated to mean: I find this R-rated comedy distasteful. I wish I could leave, but alas, I’m not in control of anything I do so I will continue to make loud, disruptive sounds.
Verdict: Go see Super 8 while visiting your fam. It’s good summer fare, and there’s something in it for everyone. Netflix Bad Teacher when you’ve got a free Friday night (and a bottle of wine) this fall.
Did anybody else see these? Do you agree? Seriously, we’ll battle it out.