Thursday, August 16, 2012

Nerd Love

Over the years I have had my fair share of odd celebrity crushes, but if I had to pick one recurring theme I would say that it's Nerds. I remember seeing The Big Chill early on in life (and not really grasping what the movie was about) and having a massive nerd crush on Jeff Goldblum, which was only reinforced by seeing him in Jurassic Park. And so my nerd crushes began. Put your average guy in a slim-fit button-down with neatly rolled-up sleeves, add some glasses and make him unable to meet my gaze and I'm done-zo. So here is a list of my top 5 celebrity nerd crushes.

1. Mathew Gray Gubler - Celebrity sightings are not uncommon in Manhattan and as someone who frequents "the city" I have had my fair share of them, but I have never geeked-out more than the time I saw Mathew Gray Gubler, AKA Dr. Spencer Reid of Criminal Minds, on the Upper East Side one lazy Sunday afternoon. My friend Laura and I had just left an appointment at a bridesmaids dress salon (I was trying on dresses for her wedding) and we were on our way to brunch at Fig and Olive when I spotted him on the opposite side of the street. To be honest, I was fairly hung-over, and when I'm in that state I tend to have less of a filter and function on a slightly less intelligent level, so it wasn't really all that surprising when I started jumping up and down like a monkey in a zoo seeing the worlds biggest banana on the other side of the cage. Thankfully MGG just smiled in acknowledgement and kept walking. He got his start as a male model (for big names like Tommy Hilfiger and Marc Jacobs), so the rugged good looks are the foundation, but he's only made hotter by his glasses, unkempt hair and gawky posture.

2. Joseph Gordon Levitt – Back when he was just another cute kid on a little sitcom called Third Rock from the Sun, Joseph Gordon Levitt was adorable. Then he played the nerdy straight man to Heath Leger’s bad boy with a heart of gold in 10 Things I Hate About You and teenaged girls in High Schools across America saw his adorkability go straight through the roof. Now as an adult he still sports the same sheepish grin, while working the indie film circuit seeming calm, cultured and collected. Need to see for yourself? Here’s a clip of him performing “Hey Jude” at the Sundance Film Festival. *swoon*

3. Seth Green – The nerd subculture has many different species; you have your brainy nerds, your music nerds, your gaming nerds, your Comicon nerds, and you have hybrids of all of these different groups. Seth Green is more of your Comicon/D&D loving style nerd. A pop-culture nerd if you will. His resume reads like a nerd rap sheet, but some of my favorites are as follows: Chuck in Can’t Buy Me Love, Cousin Wiley in Airborne, Oz in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Kenny in Can’t Hardly Wait (“Why y’all gotta waste my flavor? Damn!”), Scott Evil in the Austin Powers movies, Lyle in The Italian Job (“YOU’LL NEVER SHUT DOWN THE REAL NAPSTER”) and Entourage, in which he pokes fun at himself.

4. Kevin Smith – There’s something to be said for a man of few words. The writer/director/producer/actor/fanboy might be better know as Silent Bob to the less-than-nerdy, but true fans know that this guy is just as talented behind the screen as he is in front of it. An avid comic book reader and friend of Stan Lee himself, Smith is also a Stars Wars geek. He rocks a beard and glasses better than anyone in the Williamsburg set and avoids looking like a full-on hipster by regularly sporting a hockey jersey. The young ice skater in me melts for this terribly clever teddy bear of a guy; I’d make him lasagna any day (Clerks reference – watch it).

5. Matt Nathanson – Anyone who has seen Matt Nathanson in concert knows this to be true: he is the hottest singer/songwriter/metal and rock aficionado around (too specific? Forgive me getting all super-fan on you). John Mayer may have tried to work the whole self-proclaimed nerd/weirdo/outcast, but he’s got nothing on Nathanson’s genuine dorkiness – or his songwriting skills for that matter. Nathanson cracks self-deprecating jokes and takes chances in his live shows - how many artists would make their audience learn Prince’s “Starfish and Coffee” on the spot? Whether he’s covering Rick Springfield, Pat Benetar, Journey or doing a metal intro to one of his soft and sensitive songs, you know that this crooner is just as quirky as he is talented

I think I can speak for most girls when I say that it's really not all about looks. If a guy can make you laugh, can make you smile, then he can make your day and, really, what's more loveable than that?

Image courtesy of user Sir_Kenneth.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Waste Not, Want Not

So it's no secret that I'm a big fan of shopping, and sometimes I get carried away, so every so often I wind up with a wardrobe teaming with unworn items. Let's call it "shopping inertia."

Last night I made a listen of items that I've purchased recently, but have yet to actually wear and I'm a little embarrassed to say that there were almost 20 items on the list. It is at this point that I must enforce the following rule:

No new purchases may be made until I've worn everything that still has tags on it.

To be honest I usually bend the rules once I'm down to a couple of items, but I start off strong and that's what's really important. It just feels gluttonous to have all of these new things that I've never worn and continue to buy more before I've even worn them, regardless of whatever great deal I got.

So today I'm wearing a new/several weeks old black and white Gap t-shirt with hot pink Old Navy capris. I clearly remember thinking, "I'll wear this all the time," when I picked it up and yet here I am over a month later wearing it for the first time. Oh well, maybe this will be the first of many wears. It's super soft (as you might be able to tell from the big crease down the middle, I hate ironing) and obviously versatile due to the neutral colors.

So let's see how long it takes me to wear it all. As it stands today: 1 shirt down, 18 miscellaneous clothing/shoe/accessory items to go.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Ben, The Bachelor: Just Another Dude

So this week we saw a whole new side to Ben. No, not that "Latin swagger" side that dons a white panama hat without a hint of irony, the frat-ish side that shows he really is just another dude.

Week after week these women have been touting him as the greatest thing since sliced (white) bread. Ben's not my type, a friend on Facebook pointed out the striking resemblance between Ben and Francine from the Arthur which really sealed the deal there, but I could see how certain girls would find him attractive. Before this week he'd really just been super dorky, but that's no crime, in fact, plenty of girls find that endearing. However, 2 things happened this week that, in my humble opinion, have completely ruined his nice guy 'aw shucks' image and revealed that Ben, the Bachelor, is indeed just another guy trolling for butt.

1. Ben picks personal trainer Elyse for a 1-on-1 date on a yacht. They have a nice enough time, or so it seems, until they're sitting at dinner and he picks up the rose while he explains to her that he was looking to get to know her better on this date, but the conversation takes a turn for the worse as he says that that basically worked against her and she will not be getting the rose. Psych! Um, what? Why on earth would you pick the rose up if you weren't going to give it to her? That's just cruel. Elyse then goes into the usual melt-down why don't you like me? what's wrong with me? downward spiral, a reaction which probably wouldn't have varied whether he picked up the rose or not, but have some class, man. The bottom line: not cool, Ben, not cool.

2. Emily attempts to apologize for throwing Courtney under the bus last week (I'll admit, I did not see most of last week's episode, I just couldn't bring myself to do it, but I'm back now). She botches the apology and basically goes right back into saying that Courtney is a two-faced whack-job. This is a tough situation because Emily is definitely right about cray-cray Courtney, but she did go into the conversation under the guise of apologizing for it and focusing on her own relationship with Ben, so he is also right when he points this out. However, dumby Ben, who is obviously picking with his pecker when it comes to Courtney, tells Emily, "I encourage you to drop it and tread lightly." Excuse me? If a guy spoke to me like that he wouldn't have to worry about whether or not to give me a rose, I'd be out of there. He may as well have told her to mind her f*%$ing business. This is totally the kind of speech a girl gets from a guy who is sleeping around on her and I think it says a lot about how he would be in a "relationship," although this comment, along with his constant mentions of how he's just looking for a serious relationship out of this and is NOT sure that he wants to get married, brings me right back to my theory that Ben is just using this show to score some serious butt.

Bottom line: Ben is a dude, a guy, a boy in men's clothing (okay, that's debatable, especially in this episode). Why women are competing for him is beyond me, but it's entertaining (most of the time) so I'll continue to watch.

Other fun items from this week's episode:

Whoever yelled out "Puerto Rico does it better!" definitely owns one of those Blondes/Burnettes/Redheadds/Irish-girls/Italian-girls/German-girls/Runners do it better shirts from Urban Outfitters.

Chris Harrison's clever "I HOPE to see all of you at the next rose ceremony" comment, which obviously meant that it was opposite day in the house and at least one girl would not be making it to said ceremony. Oh Chris, you tease us so.

Courtney's "Be Nice" shirt complete with roses with thorns and threatening font.

Nicky's pause when saying, "we've come all the way to this beautiful [pause]... Puerto Rico," because she is obviously not sure if Puerto Rico is an island (it's actually an archipelago and Vieques, which is the island they were on, is one of the smaller ones).

Kudos to the shaved ice guy for creating the most phallic "piraguas" I have ever seen. He even made it an oddly fleshy color. I wonder if the producers suggested he do that.

Courtney says that Kasie B. is a little girl and Ben needs a woman. So, then why does Courtney herself repeatedly speak in a baby voice? There's a head scratcher for ya'.

My first though when I saw Courtney on the stairs to Ben's room at the W Retreat and Spa was, "okay, where is she hiding the dead rabbit?"

I could go on about Courtney for pages, but the previews tell me she's going to keep throwing loads of material my way, so I'll end it here. 'Til next week, this is the final paragraph.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A Bachelor/Tough Love Crossover Suggestion

While last night's episode of The Bachelor was chock full of cattiness and strategery (I'm willing to bet that many of the contestants think that's a real word, so I'm going to use it like one), there was one shining star of craziness that stood out for me: blogger Jenna's meltdown-dismissal-meltdown sequence.

Let me start by reiterating that I still cannot believe she made it past the first round of eliminations; with her fried attempt at ombre hair, ill-fitting clothes and tendency to cry at the drop of a hat (or a sip of wine as the case may be), this woman is clearly in need of some serious help.

Then it dawned on me - Jenna should be on VH1's Tough Love, not The Bachelor!

As a big fan of both Tough Love and Steve Ward in general I think this is the perfect opportunity for him to show us what he's got. Anyone who watched the first 2 episodes of The Bachelor witnessed the unbridled craziness that Jenna brings to the table, but that's not to say she doesn't deserve to find love (and after last night's post-rose ceremony interview, we also know that she feels like she deserves it too, yikes) and who better to help her than Steve? I can just see her in the hot seat now...

Let's be honest, there's no chance that she's going to be the next Bachelorette, in fact, she's lucky that the show's audience is primarily female because any guy who saw her, um, performance would surely run in the other direction (or just try to bed her, but you get the point). Even so, that kind of instability can't stay hidden for long so, unless she seeks help, she's doomed to make more of those awkward "I'm not like your typical girl" speeches.

Honestly I have no idea how reality TV contracts work, but if it is at all possible for Jenna to join the next cast of Tough Love, that would make me beyond happy. I also don't think it would hurt their ratings.

***Side note: when I was selecting 'labels' for this blog post it was a natural instinct to select "charity" because, quite honestly, that's exactly what getting Jenna on Tough Love would be.

Image courtesy of user DartmoorGiant.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

"You Know the Movie Song..."

As a girl obsessed with movies, I suppose it's only natural that I enjoy the soundtracks as well. Frequently a song will come on that immediately triggers the corresponding scene in a movie to play in my head.

The other day I was driving and "Sorry (I Ran All the Way Home)" by The Impalas came on and my mind immediately flashed to poor Vern in Stand By Me, huffing and puffing in the tree house amongst his decidedly less plump friends, just trying to tell them a story, but constantly being interrupted by the guys singing the song in his face. Good times.

This got me thinking of other hits that conjure up movie scenes and a new post category, titled after a line in the Dire Straights song "Romeo and Juliet" from that '90's classic Empire Records, "You Know the Movie Song..."

Here are a few to get the ball rolling:

"Don't You Just Know It" by Huey "Piano" Smith in A Bronx Tale - The scene where Calogero and his friends are taunting Phil the Peddler by singing this up in his face while others are stealing fruit from his cart. My friend Anthony loves this movie and on many occasions I have tried to recapture the singing-into-the-camera-fisheye-lens effect of that scene; needless to say these videos have all been deleted. I apparently lack DeNiro's directorial skills.

"Dancing with Myself" the Billy Idol version (the original is apparently by a band called Generation X, thanks Wikipedia!) in Can't Buy Me Love - As one of the many people who finds New Year's Eve to be an over-hyped night that almost always ends poorly and/or dramatically, I think this song fits the scene of Ronald's downfall at Big John's NYE party perfectly. After overhearing Ronald/Donald use her cheesy sappy heartfelt love poem to seduce another chick at the party, a very drunk Cindy Mancini chooses to expose him for the creepy nerd he really is, telling the rest of the party guests that he paid her to go out with him (gotta love the excess of the '80's). And just like that Ronald goes from "King status to no status," as his brother Chuckie later succinctly sums up later. But who could ask for a better soundtrack to their demise?

"Wild Horses" The Sundays version (the original is of course by The Rolling Stones) in Fear - I'm willing to bet that you will be hard-pressed to find a girl who was a teen in the '90's who does not remember this scene where Mark "Marky-Mark" Wahlberg manually pleasures a teenaged Reese Witherspoon on a roller-coaster ride with this tune playing in the background. Nothing says committed relationship quite like going to third base in a rusted metal bucket with torn pleather seats. It truly captures young love at its finest. This definitely isn't the most ridiculous scene in the movie though; on occasion, say for instance when waiting for a friend to open the door for me, I like to repeat the line, "Mr. Waaaaaalker - LET ME INTO YOUR F*CKING HOUSE!"

More of these little gems to come.

Image courtesy of user Joshua Rappeneker.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Let the Bachelor Bashing Begin!

Another calendar year has gone by and after the usual Christmas/NYE bacchanalia it's time to start fresh. Having an additional day off from work I chose to spend yesterday rife with cliche - cleaning the house and working out.

As a reward for all of my clean-slate-ness I indulged in the season premier of The Bachelor (along with a turkey burger with mozzarella on a toasted sesame seed bun and a glass of red wine - it's good for the heart! - for dinner). While I haven't watched this show in several seasons, I was happy to see that it's basically the same. Chris Harrison is still my absolute favorite part of the show - what I wouldn't give to hear his inner monologue! The girls are all bat-shit crazy, their mental conditions only exacerbated by wine and competition. And the gowns they wore for their arrivals ranged from fab (Jennifer's blue sequined floor length number) to fail (blogger Jenna's insecurities were hinted at the minute she stepped out of that limo in that sparkly white sack which also appeared to be missing sections of sequins).

Any of the women who arrived without a gimmick critiqued those who did (while I do see Brittany's move of bringing Grandma Sheryl along as a bit of an easy in, I didn't think it was necessary for the other girls to point out the poor woman's wrinkles - she's a grandmother for crying out loud! And she's obviously got more spunk and personality than most of you crazies). My personal favorite was the girl who just walked past Ben and into the house. Sucker that he is, his only response was, "bold move!"

But gimmick or not they all seemed to have really strange opening pick-up lines that were primarily profession related. Someone obviously suggested they do this, but one has to wonder if it was a clever producer looking for a laugh, an intern looking to earn brownie points or perhaps one of the ladies themselves (who then of course didn't use whatever cray-cray line she posited since she actually just hoping to make the rest of them look stupid).

The episode went on to capture the usual cattiness, that bizarre moment when Monica seemed to be hitting on one of the other female contestants and of course the final melt down of Jenna, which of course lead to her not getting a rose her securing a rose from Ben.

Lesson learned: perhaps Ben is still single because he's a bad judge of character, which conveniently makes for excellent TV.

Image courtesy of user DartmoorGiant.