Yo yo yo, Unpro-ites! It's late July and I heartily commend your survival skills if you haven't melted yet.
So yesterday I took part in not one but TWO outdoor festivals. This is worth noting, because on a good day I loathe these things. There's nothing wrong with wandering around drinking/eating/looking at art with your friends. Nothing at all. But you see, I grew up within spitting distance of county fairgrounds (and there was no rest in the off-season, as the county fairgrounds doubled as a racetrack, meaning on Friday nights at least six months of the year we were treated to an hours-long VROOOOOOOOOM. El train noise is a picnic compared to that shit). Therefore, anything that involves crowds, sweat and booths is a bigger turnoff to me than Michael Scott describing his reverse vasectomy.
The latter fest was a work necessity, and by late afternoon the temp had cooled a bit and there was a nice breeze, so my three-hour shift was relatively pleasant. (Plus, free chicken fresh off the grill afterwards!) The former, however, marked the occasion of My Very First Flash Mob (TM). One of my dance teachers and her company decided to get their Stevie Wonder on, and I was ecstatic to take part. I've wanted to be in a flash mob ever since seeing this video clip. And I don't even like Weeds!
Though an early morning thunderstorm had me hesitating, I realized that years of outdoor theatre (and we're talking wearing a long-sleeved cowgirl costume in 100+ degree weather) had conditioned me to perform in the most precarious of situations. Besides, if I'm gonna perish in a tornado, I'd rather go down dancing than huddled in a basement Hail Mary-ing for my life. Luckily, the weather cleared up in plenty of time, and rehearsed-to-look spontaneous merriment ensued:
Check out the dork in the blue skirt. Trust me, her inner theatre geek was positively squeeing.
Anyhoozle, the name of the game this week is blogs. I've previously done some shout-outs, and thought it was high time I introduced some new faves. Feel free to click, explore, and give these talented and fab ladies (and one gent) some lurve.
1. Ms. Friendly's Comprehensive Guide to Inner-City Teaching. A while back, one of my readers contacted me to check out her blog. Three months, one bout with bronchitis, and one intense workload later, I finally stopped dragging my feet, and was I glad I did! I have other friends who are teachers, and have done some instructing myself, and I'm always entertained to hear school horror stories conveyed in a witty way. Not to mention I admire the hell out of educators for boldly going where Unpro would never dare to go full-time. From skewering her assistant principal to calling out her students on their snarkiness and their sweetness, Ms. Friendly is a lot of fun, and she'll return to regular posting in the fall. Think Jen Lancaster Goes to Public School.
2. Obsessions of a Workaholic. A few months ago, my good friend hopped on the blogging bandwagon and never looked back. (Tis a big responsibility but highly addictive.) She too is a teacher--most specifically an adjunct and assistant professor--as well as an English Lit PhD student. Oh yeah, and she's recently jumped back into the online dating scene. For those of you who don't have the pleasure of knowing this woman in real life, enjoy her clever turns of phrase as she navigates writing, educating and the randomness of city life.
3. Anthroholic. Lately I've gotten into fashion, and no one is more surprised about this than I. Even more shockingly, I've started to patronize Anthropologie. I'd previously written off this store as being too Euro-y and exclusively for chicks built like coat hangers. But in May, when I was looking for a cocktail dress to wear at a hip L.A. bar for Bob's and my ten-year friend-iversary, I hit paydirt at Anthro's downtown Chicago location. I've been hooked ever since--granted, on my budget I have to be careful, but they do have good sales on well-made pieces built to last. And wouldn't ya know it, there are some cool Anthropologie-related blogs out there, the most quintessential of which involves a lovely lady named Kim who also lives in Chicago (Windy City repreSENT!). Join Kim as she makes recommendations, mixes pieces old and new (and not exclusively Anthro), and showcases outfits from fashionable and fun readers. Granted, the fitting room reviews don't help me a whole lot (Kim's all tiny and perfect and I have boobs and hips to burn), but for a relatively new clothing enthusiast, Anthroholic's been a godsend.
4. Questionable Taste. Truth be told, I'm kind of mad at my sister Meg. It was her "oh my God that is the cutest dress EVER you look so pretty full price is totally worth it!" that got me into Anthropologie in the first place. Enabler. (For the record, she also led me to Anthroholic. Double enabler!) Despite my wallet's anger at her, I do enjoy her blog. Again, as someone who's just starting to care about what she puts on her bod, I appreciate any and all help on where to find cute things and how to put them together. I also enjoy her pop-culture musings, funny random videos (Alan Thicke-hosted aerobics competition, anyone?), and pictures of her adorable putty-tat, Nessa.
5. Zip and a Kick! This one comes to us courtesy of my L.A. pal Joe, a nerdy-yet-hip dude whose finger is on the pulse of all things comic, comedy and Disney. He also likes hot boys, so we have that in common. One of my favorite features of this blog is Mix-N-Mash Mondays , where Joe showcases whatever remix or mashup he's been sweatin' lately. Joe's a laugh and a half in real life, but for those of you not fortunate enough to know him, give his zippy blog a whirl.
As an added bonus, remember the Deception review and giveaway? Our winner, Ms. LadyJ3000, reviewed the book on her blog--check it out!