I'm not much of an "out-loud" laugher. One of my most significant out-loud laughs in memory was when I was about 14 years old, listening to LoveLine on the radio. Adam Corolla made some off-color joke about spreading his "seed" out the window of a helicopter, impregnating the women below and spawning millions of little Adams. I know, totally queer. But it's all in the delivery, and Adam is a master deliverer, apparently, because alone in my room, I laughed so hard I fell of the bed. I actually fell off.

I digress. The point of this rant was to pose the question - should one fake a response to appease a crowd or stick to their guns and face both his/her own embarrassment and the embarrassment of others? Example: a friend recently showed me a YouTube video that another friend produced as an online Christmas card. Objectively, the video is very funny (girl in weird looking wig sings Mariah's "All I Want for Christmas is You" to her cat. Again, delivery...) and though I smiled wide, she was not satisfied without sustained, barreling laugh.

"Did you not think it was funny? Seriously?"

"No no," I said, "it's hilarious. I'm just not much of an out-loud laugher."

That explanation didn't really fly. And believe me, it never does. People always assume their jokes aren't that funny or the movie's not as good as they thought when they see my reaction. That or I'm a heartless b****.

So when she decided to show me a second video of another friend, I opted for riotous (but believable) laughter to calm her worry that a. I was a heartless b**** with no sense of humor, or b. she was wrong in finding it funny in the first place. This solution yielded a much more desirable response - smiles, shared joy (albeit feigned) and no hurt feelings.

Moral of the story is that in my opinion, if it'll make someone else feel better and get them off your back, fake it.


"Tread softly because you tread on my dreams"

Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven
- W B Yeats


Flames on the Side of My Face


Fosse Grooves Meet Beyonce Moves

My all time favorite mash-up,

inspired this addictive dance...


Photographic Travel Journal: Part 1

Wall 'o Tools, Deutsches Museum, Munich

Weekend Reading List

Taxi Magic: Hail A Cab From Your iPhone At The Push Of A Button by Jason Kincaid, TechCrunch

The Direct Approach
by Helene Cooper, The New York Times

Brooks on Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, gladwell.com (response to the David Brooks article from Pop Culture Bites post)

Soul Reviver by Saki Knafo, The New York Times

5 Ways Your Workout Can Weather the Recession by Katherine Hobson, U.S. News & World Report

Top Ten Healthy Gifts by Karen Springen, Newsweek

(These last two courtesy of my friend's blog,
Chronic Style)


Silly Gadgets

This is soooo rad, but besides being a casual conversation piece, it's pretty much worthless.

I present the dancing bluetooth mp3 player... Sony Rolly.
(Yes, a fab Christmas gift. But no, you can't have it. Only sold in Japan.)

Feist, 1234

Justin Timberlake, SexyBack

Wisdom, via Dad

Odin's ravens, Thought and Memory,
Fly the whole world wide every day.
We worry lest Thought should fall in flight,
Yet more we fear for Memory.

- Grimnismal by the Poetic Edda

The Perils of Organized Religion


Rock n' Roll Wishes and Stratocaster Dreams

Overall, I'm a pretty reserved girl. I hate karaoke. I blackout during public speaking engagements. I rarely raise my voice. (unless provoked by a Comcast customer service representative.. in that case, all bets are off) Despite my reticence, I always dreamed of wailing on an electric guitar, and in those dreams, I play Pearl Jam. Exclusively.

For my nineteenth birthday, I strong-armed my parents into buying me a cherry red Fender Strat. Turns out, I should have listened when my mom reminded me of my past musical endeavors. (violin: 1 year, piano: 7 years, no practice, only song I could ever play was the Ukrainian Bell Carol, which I have since forgotten) Sadly, the instructional dvds never did the trick and - this is the excuse I like tell people - my hands are very small, and it's difficult to play the good chords. After a few years gathering dust, my Fender found a loving home via Craigslist.

I still get a little choked up when I hear a good PJ tune, remembering fondly the badass image of me kicking ass in my daydreams. I conveniently gloss over my failures in reality.

Pop Culture Info-Bites

Urban Outfitters Responds to Controversy From Yanking Same-Sex T-shirt, New York Magazine's The Cut

The 100 Best Tracks of 2008, Pitchfork.com

Lost in the Crowd, by David Brooks, The New York Times

Exclusive: Hilary Duff 'Absolutely Did Not Say' She Was a Virgin, FOX News


Weekend Reading List

The Uses of Adversity: Can Underprivileged Outsiders Have an Advantage? by Malcolm Gladwell , The New Yorker

Dynamic Spread of Happiness in a Large Social Network: Longitudinal Analysis Over 20 Years in the Framingham Heart Study, by James H. Fowler and Nicholas A Christakis, BMJ

New Moon, by Stephenie Meyer
(Second book in the Twilight series... Yes I finished the first book. Yes I loved it. Yes I saw the movie. No, it was not as good as the book.)

Birth Control Pills Affect Women's Taste in Men: How Synthetic Hormones Change Desire in Women--and Their Choice in a Mate, by Melinda Wenner, Scientific American

Best Albums of 2008

(according to the music listserve at my office...)

Thao - We Brave Bee Stings and All
Santogold - Santogold
Ra Ra Riot - The Rhumb Line
Little Joy - Little Joy
Goldfrapp - Seventh Tree
Frightened Rabbit - Liver! Lung! FR!
Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago
Fleet Foxes - Fleet Foxes
Vampire Weekend - Vampire Weekend
Black Kids - Party Traumatic
Air France – No Way Down

The Heart Strings - Try Fly Blue Sky
High Wire - After the rain
Elbow - The Seldom Seen Kid
Mr Hudson & The Library - A Tale of Two Cities
Hot Chip - Made in the Dark
The Streets - Everything is Borrowed
Martha Wainwright - I Know You’re Married But I’ve Got Feelings Too
British Sea Power - Do You Like Rock Music?
MGMT – Oracular Spectacular
Harlem – Free Drugs
Of Montreal – Skeletal Lamping
Albert Hammond Jr. - Como Te Llama
Wolf Parade – At Mount Zoomer
Cut Copy – In Ghost Colors
TV On the Radio – Dear Science
Vivian Girls – Vivian Girls
Lambchop – OH (Ohio)
Calexico – Carried to Dust
Q-Tip - Rennaissance
Born Ruffians - Red, Yellow and Blue
Crystal Castles – Crimewave
Studio – West Coast
Lindstrom – Where You Go I Go To
Late of the pier – Fantasy Black Channel
Pnau – Pnau
Grafton Primary – Eon
Empire of the Sun – Walking on a Dream
Of Montreal – Skeletal Lamping
Ratatat – Lp3
Walkmen – You and Me
Morgan Geist – Double Night Time


The Rap Up

Ghostface Killah is Karl Malone. Karl Malone is Ghostface Killah...

If Wu-Tang Members Were NBA Players, The Rap Up


Facebook'll Get You Fired

From someecards.com


What I'm Listening To, archive


  • Frightened Rabbit - Liver! Lung! FR!
  • Secret Machines - Secret Machines
  • Robin Guthrie - Continental
  • Passion Pit - Chunk of Change
  • Little Joy - Little Joy
  • Starlight Mints - Drowaton
  • Jem - Down to Earth
  • Midlake - The Trials of Van Occupanther
  • The Frech Kicks - Two Thousand