Journalist. Mother. Bunny enthusiast. Pop culture junkie.

Journalist. Mother. Bunny enthusiast. Pop culture junkie.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Shit I found on Pinterest

Like every other 20-something-year-old girl, I love to curl up with a warm cup of herbal tea and frequent the inspiration website, Pinterest.

It is a magical place where fashionistas ogle clothes they will never wear. Single girls plan their wedding decorations. And people save recipes they will never make.

Is it heaven? Perhaps. But sometimes, it can seem like hell.

Once in a while, during my pinning, I will come across things that I never want to see again.

I've decided to share them with you.


Are you fucking kidding me? Some foodies take things way too far.

I found this image on some girl's hair inspiration board. News flash: this upside down hair basket doesn't even look good on the MODEL. And she's HOT.

Almost every girl I know pins cute little sayings. One of my friends actually pinned this one today. Needless to say, I was horrified. I hope she knows she can do better.

Fact 94: THIS ISN'T TRUE!!!!

Like ohmygod, that is SUCH a cute wedding photo idea!

If you pinned the one before, you're probably going to pin this one too.

I love the moms on Pinterest who get so over-excited about everything that they lose all common sense. This was repinned more than 1,000 times.

I have a thinspiration board because I want to lose 10 pounds this year. I came across another thinspiration board that had this awful photo pinned with the caption "perfect body!". Ummmm...

Some girl pinned this one today, with the caption "This is SO me and Dave!". There is a story behind that statement I need to know. (Or maybe not).

Aaaaand baby shower ideas! Wouldn't you love to serve these cake pops to your friends??? Maybe, if you're having ROSEMARY'S BABY.

Anyway, that's just a handful of crap I came across on pinterest over the past week.

Are you on Pinterest? Do you ever come across crazy pins?

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A royal striptease?

Kate Middleton's cousin is a stripper.

The girl of the moment is Katrina Darling, and she found out from the British media last year that she is the second cousin, once removed, to the Duchess of Cambridge. (Her grandmother and Kate's great-grandmother were sisters).

Move over, Pippa?

The 21-year-old burlesque dancer is a banker by day and strip-tease sensation by night.

She is bringing her show, God Save the Queen, to New York City in March.

The saucy Brit has never met her famous cousins, or the royal family, but said she would not turn down an invitation to hang out with them, should they ask. She would also be more than willing to send them a few tickets to see her show.

According to a New York Post article, a giggling spokesperson for the royal family had no comment about the new-found connection.

Here are a couple more pin-up photos of the vintage-esque bottle blonde.

What do you think of Katrina Darling?

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Iconic Oscar Gowns

Want a glimpse of the most fabulous vintage Oscar gowns?

Check out my Jenny's Mouthwash post by clicking here.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

What movie star?

"I can't wait to be forgotten."
Kay Francis uttered this quote during a media interview in the 1930s.

Sadly, she got her wish.

It is odd to think most people in the world today have never heard of one of the most famous movie stars from the 20th century.

She was the Queen of Hollywood. She was one of the first fashion icons in American history. She was a bisexual goddess, illuminating the silver screen with her secretive smile and spiraling out of control when the cameras were off.

Kay was raised during the first decade of the 1900s by a single mother, struggling to make it as a stage actress. They frequently moved, making Kay's childhood an unforgettable blur of different schools, faces, names, and places.

Desperate to escape her unstable home life, Kay married the son of a wealthy businessman when she was in her late teens. But the marriage ended in divorce a few years later.

As a newly single young woman, Kay turned to her mother's profession to see if she could find success on the stage. She did. After making a splash on Broadway in the 1920s, Kay was encouraged to pursue films. Kay did not long to be a movie star, however. She only agreed to go Hollywood because of the higher salary.

Kay's exotic looks worked in her favor. Movie-goers were enthralled by the mysterious dark-haired beauty who randomly appeared in the most eclectic film roles Hollywood had to offer.

While her star was rising, Kay became increasingly irritated with the media's growing obsession with her personal life. She married several times and collected lovers like candy. Her sexual escapades with both wealthy men and famous women made her the talk of the town.

During the height of her career, Kay was the highest paid actress in Hollywood. She had also become the biggest fashion icon of the 1930s. Jaw-droppingly gorgeous costumes were created for Kay, who paid extremely close attention to the designs she wore on camera. It was joked in Hollywood that Kay's fans cared more about what she was wearing than the movies themselves.

She starred in dozens of big hits, including my personal favorite, Trouble in Paradise. But the sweet smell of success could not dampen her growing depression. She attempted suicide, by slitting her wrists, but was rescued by her maid.

She was sick of being treated like a puppet by movie studios. She kept falling in love with deadbeats who milked her fame and money.

Movie studios were so impatient with her irate behavior, they started placing her in terrible films. They began lavishing their attention on younger, more modern talents, such as Bette Davis, who would one day outshine Kay as a Hollywood legend and fashion icon.

As she got older, the offers for films started to dwindle. She began to drink heavily, and she gradually lost all her friends. Her past included a series of husbands, but no children.

In the 1960s, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and she passed away in 1968. She left the bulk of her estate to a non-profit organization that trains guide dogs for the blind.

And today, barely anyone even knows Kay Francis was once the most famous woman in Hollywood.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Guest Post: Helping Those in Need

There are very few people in this world who go out of their way to help out others. I'm proud to say one of those people is my friend, Tara, from Musings of a Notorious Daydreamer. Last year, she had an experience which changed her life, and since she is an excellent writer, I asked her to give me a guest post about it.

I hope you enjoy!

Last March, I went to Eagle Pass, TX, a border town that is about a mile from the U.S./Mexico border. My college took a group of ten people down to Eagle Pass to do some service work, including holding a literacy fair for the community and a health fair for the Kickapoo Traditional Tribe of Texas. Our group included some student nurses, some staff members from my college who have experience with service work, and students like me, who wanted to go to help the cause.

Eagle Pass is in a county that is within the top 20 poorest counties in the country. The Border Patrol runs rampant in the town to prevent illegal immigrants from crossing over—we even saw the patrolers driving around on the Kickapoo reservation, which the Rio Grande runs through. And that infamous fence that runs across the border? We went right up to it and looked across the river, watching the people on the Mexico side right up by the water. I’ve never been out of the country, but this was as close as I’ve ever been, and it was a surreal feeling. Knowing the turmoil that has been going on down there, and knowing that I was so close to it, was such a weird feeling.

My family was not too keen on me traveling to Eagle Pass because of the violence that has been going on by the border, but for some reason I felt like this was something I needed to do. I haven’t done a lot of community service in my life, and this seemed like the perfect opportunity to gain some experience and do something good for people who really needed the help. It was promised that we would not be crossing over, and that most of the danger was on the other side. To be honest, I almost backed out of the trip, as I was having a rough semester and wanted to take my Spring Break to recuperate and nurse my burnout. However, I thought about it for a few months and went back and forth before finally paying my deposit and taking off for a place I had never been with people I didn’t know very well.

Once we arrived, we teamed up with some people from a church in Texas and began putting together little bookshelves to give to the families who attended the literacy fair. We had collected books to bring with us as well. On the day of the literacy fair, we went to the Eagle Pass community library and gave out the bookshelves and books to the families. What was especially nice about this was the fact that each child in the family received their own bookshelf that they were able to decorate, and were able to pick out their very own books. The idea with this literacy fair was that the parents would read to their children and that the kids would learn and continue to read on their own eventually. I caught myself tearing up a few times during the fair because education is something close to my heart, and it felt good to know that we were doing such a wonderful thing for these kiddos and their parents.

After the fair was over, we traveled to the Kickapoo reservation to hold the health fair. We made up kits that had toiletries in them and brought them with us to hand out. The nursing students took blood pressures, weight, height, and blood glucose levels of the adults, and took the height and weight of the kids, while also giving them a lesson on hygiene practices such as washing hands and brushing teeth. This fair was a little more disheartening because it was evident that the health practices on the reservation were not where they needed to be, but hopefully our work sparked something for the residents. We also ended up handing out books to the kids on the reservation, and played some games with them for the day. I felt really good about our work with the Kickapoo Tribe, and was really grateful for having the opportunity to learn about another culture.

One day in particular that has stuck with me from my trip to Eagle Pass was when we met a 16-year-old girl who had a newborn baby boy. She lived in what is called a colonia, which is a cluster of houses that sort of operate as their own little town or community. The houses are pretty run down, and many of them don’t have running water or electricity. This particular girl’s trailer didn’t have running water or heating/cooling. She was living with her stepfather, and her mother recently had been deported to Mexico for living in the U.S. illegally. The girl was married to a man, but had left him after he physically abused her. Going into her home and seeing the conditions she had to live in was very disheartening, but luckily, a group from Texas was building her a brand new home next to the trailer that she and her stepfather would live in once it was complete. They hoped that eventually her mother would be able to come back into the country and live with them as well. We gave the young mom diapers, formula, and other supplies for her baby, and the nursing students showed her how to take care of the baby as he grew. I often still think about this girl and how she is doing today.

Another interesting experience I had while in Eagle Pass was the opportunity to eat dinner with a Border Patrol agent and his wife. We discussed some of the serious issues taking place at the border such as the drug cartels and immigration problems, and I appreciated his perspective and thoughts on what was going on. He said that he felt sincere sympathy for the people who wanted to come over and work so that they could provide for their families and escape the violence, but that because of the crime and the implications for the U.S., he believed in there being immigration laws. I didn’t agree with everything he said, but I did feel that he was sincere and truly wanted the best for both sides of the border.

One thing I hadn’t counted on happening while on this trip was the impact the experience had on my spirituality. I haven’t been particularly religious for several years, but while on this trip, I became very disheartened and felt something change in me. I came to the conclusion that we couldn’t sit around and pray to a being that we couldn’t promise existed, waiting for a miracle to help save the people in trouble in this world. WE needed to be the ones to act and change things. I was sad at what seemed like me losing my faith, which wasn’t strong in the first place, but appreciated the insight I gained through this introspection. Something was sparked in me that made me want to do more, to be active in helping others make progress and in trying to change some of these issues happening in society. Most of the people who went on this trip were very religious, and I felt out of place being among them, but I knew that they also wanted the best for the people of Eagle Pass, and despite our spiritual differences, I was grateful to have the experience with them.

All-in-all, this trip was one that has affected me in many ways, one that I appreciate and am glad I took the chance of going on. I had planned on going back with my school this year, but recently found out that the trip was canceled due to a lack of interest. I’m pretty disappointed about it, but perhaps I will have the opportunity to go next year. I still think of the people I met on this trip and those who we helped while down there.

Because of this experience, I now have a newly-found interest in doing this kind of work in the future, and realize the importance of reaching out to others; it not only helps them, but teaches you something about yourself as well. I’m extremely thankful I was able to have this opportunity, and the cultural and political information I gained was invaluable.

Learning to understand a piece of society other than your own is something I think is essential, something that everyone needs to do. Eagle Pass was an unforgettable experience; I hope I can return again someday, and I hope that progress comes to the people of the community soon—they are wonderful, and they deserve to be happy and fulfilled just as much as anyone else.

I highly insist you check out Tara's blog, Musings of a Notorious Daydreamer. It's inspiring.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Jackie O's crazy relatives

Last night, I saw an amazing documentary.

Grey Gardens is a startling and mesmerizing peak into the lives of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis's aunt, Big Edie, and her first cousin, Little Edie.

The documentary, from 1975, reveals the mother and daughter lived in complete squalor in a filthy old mansion. They ate canned food in a garbage-covered room, while cats peed on the bed. They cackled over meaningless jokes. They sang songs nobody remembered. They fought over petty nonsense.

What makes this raw footage even more shocking is that these two women were once beautiful and dazzling society ladies.

Big Edie, who was the sister to Jackie O's father, married a prominent, wealthy lawyer.

Her only daughter, Little Edie, was born in 1917.

Big Edie was desperate to become a famous jazz singer and despite being a high society wife, she longed to have a Bohemian artistic lifestyle. Her inappropriate behavior and jazz lounge gigs humiliated her husband, who eventually left her, taking all his money with him.

On a whim, Big Edie took her daughter out of boarding school, forcing the child to attend musicals and movies with her every single day. After two years, Big Edie was forced to put her daughter back in school.

Little Edie grew up into the most gorgeous female in her family. Even her younger cousin (the future First Lady) would never even compare.

In the 1940s, Little Edie became a fashion model, but the career was shot down when her furious and embarrassed father found out.

She flirted and dated dozens of the most handsome and wealthiest bachelors in the world. Even John F. Kennedy's older brother fell madly in love with her after one night, begging for her hand in marriage after seeing her briefly at a dance.

But Little Edie brushed them all away, because she was holding out for someone spectacular. She just wasn't sure who yet.

In her late 20s, she moved to New York City to pursue her dream of being a star. She also secretly wanted to find that magical Mr. Right she had been dreaming about since girlhood.

By 1952, she had found neither yet. Her mother, Big Edie, called her, insisting she return to their East Hampton home, Grey Gardens, and keep her company. Immediately. She didn't want to be alone, and didn't think it was a good idea for Little Edie to pursue her dreams in the Big Apple anymore.

With her tail between her legs, Little Edie moved back into her childhood home and quickly sunk into madness. A skin condition caused her to lose all her hair, becoming bald and eyebrowless. She had to wear turbans every day. She spent years taking care of her mother, bitterly agonizing about "what might have been" if she had stayed in New York City, or married one of her wealthy girlhood suitors.

She wallowed most of her adult life in complete regret. She blamed her mother for it too.

As the years went by, they became poorer and poorer. They had to sell furniture, piece by piece, to survive in their decaying mansion.

And there they were, in 1975, two faded beauties lost in their own disappointments and swallowing their "what ifs." Big Edie spent hours listening to her old jazz records, wishing she had made it as a singing sensation during the 1930s. Little Edie longingly gazed at photographs of herself when she was a 20-something knockout and could stop traffic with her looks.

No money. No friends. No future.

But not forgotten.

Decades after the documentary was released, it inspired a musical about the mother and daughter in 2006, plus a television drama starring Drew Barrymore (playing Little Edie) last year.

Two spreads in Vogue have been dedicated to Little Edie's style, and in 2007, Marc Jacobs created the Little Edie bag for his collection.