Thursday, December 1, 2011

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Savory vs. Sweet - The Thanksgiving Cupcake

I know I'm in the minority of the general population, but I far prefer savory foods to sweet. With very few exceptions (fruit, fruit candy, popsicles), I don't really enjoy sweet foods. Don't get me wrong, if I'm in just the right mood I can certainly appreciate a fresh baked sugar or oatmeal raisin cookie, some Bluebell Homemade Vanilla ice cream, or funfetti cake. But those moods are far and few between, and more often than not I'd rather eat an extra appetizer than dessert.

Because of my odd palette, I've never really gotten in to the whole "gourmet cupcake" scene. I know people are obsessed with Magnolia Bakery, Sprinkles, Hello Cupcake, and the like - but I've just never gone gaga for cupcakes. Until now. Behold, the THANKSGIVING CUPCAKE:

This recipe is completely and utterly genius. It takes my single favorite meal in the entire world (Thanksgiving, duh), and turns it into a small delicious-looking, delectable CUPCAKE. Seriously you guys, there are no words. I'm drooling at my computer screen right now.

The recipe doesn't look terribly difficult, but seeing as how I'm not so handy in the kitchen, I probably won't be attempting this any time soon. Therefore, I am now seeking: friends who are handy in the kitchen to make this for me PLEASE. I will be forever and ever indebted.

And tell me, are you guys all sweet-tooths, or are there a few savory-addicts like myself out there?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Karaoke On Demand

Since I've been home with not much to do during the daytime, one of my favorite new pastimes is exploring the ins and outs of my Comcast Xfinity On Demand system. Thus far I've discovered a plethora of hidden treasures including new and old tv shows and movies, various bands live in concert, music videos, and much much more. But none of this even compares to my best find yet: Karaoke On Demand.

pictured: my actual television and the actual song I was singing. Yes, that is Heart's "Alone"

I know my love for karaoke may be somewhat outside of the norm - so much so that I have it listed as one of my precious few facebook interests (is it no longer cool to use that as a barometer for how much you're into something? eep.) - but seriously, this shiz is awesome.

I mean I can just picture it've got some friends over...the music's jamming, drinks are flowing, fun is being had. All of a sudden someone (me) goes, "Hey guys, wanna head out to a karaoke bar??" Someone else replies, "Ugh, no, it's freeeeezing outside, why would we leave?" Someone else (me) responds, "NO FEAR, Y'ALL, I've got Karaoke On Demand!" And with that, the party (and our body temperature) is saved.

pictured: Jason Derulo's "Whatcha Say" featuring the best part of Karaoke OnDemand - the background images

Now in reality, the most use my Karaoke On Demand has received has been me singing, by myself, at my parents house, in a recliner, for an hour. Whatever.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A post about.....running?

I'm sure anyone who knows me at all saw the title of this post and immediately wondered if they'd accidentally landed on the wrong blog.

Nope, guys, it's still me. And yes, I'm writing about.....running.

Let me back up a little bit and explain my history with running. As far back as I can remember, I have always always hated running. I was slow in elementary school when we had to run "the mile" in P.E. I was still slow in middle school, despite desperately wanting to be seen as athletic and a tomboy (anyone remember those shirts that said "____ is life, the rest is just details"? Well, I owned one honoring the great sport of basketball. ha.) Finally, in high school, I accepted that I would never be athletic and met my physical education requirements through marching band practice. Not much changed in college (where I never set foot in Dartmouth's brand new gym), or law school (where I paid membership fees at 24 Hour Fitness for a year without going to the gym), or Hawaii (where I briefly attended boot camp but then quit before finishing sessions I'd paid for). Suffice it to say, I HATE running.

In the last few weeks, though, running has been on my mind a lot. This past weekend everyone was talking about the NYC marathon, and tons of facebook friends posted their times/pictures of them running/people they cheered on, etc. It got me thinking, why am I so incapable of doing this?? Since being back home, I've run on the treadmill at the gym my parents attend a few times, and done a handful of laps around the neighborhood, but never more than like 2 miles. I was talking to someone last night who told me that I shouldn't beat myself up for it because it takes like a year to be any good at running. While I recognize that it takes a level of commitment to be good at anything, especially physical activity, I just can't understand why I'm so incapable of committing to it.

My friend T recently committed herself to a 30 day yoga challenge. I'm not going to do anything of the sort with regards to running, but I will say this. I want to be able to run 3 miles. Yes. Sometime in the near future I would like to be able to say that I can run - no, not 26.2 miles, or 13.1 miles, but - 3 miles.

There we go people - I'm posting it here to keep me honest. And any and all words of encouragement, or better yet, HELP on how I can achieve this would be much appreciated.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Alright People, I'm addicted... Revenge!

For everyone that recommended this show - you guys either know me really well or we have similar tastes in TV. Because I'm officially hooked. I'm on to episode number 5, and I started with the pilot about 12 hours ago. And the ONLY reason I went to bed last night was because my eyes were starting to hurt from my previous several hours of television-watching during the day. What a life I lead, I know.

My favorite part of the show is definitely Emily VanCamp. Playing the role of Emily Thorne a.k.a. Amanda Clarke, VanCamp is pretty spot on. I already knew I loved her from Brothers & Sisters, but this role is far more multi-dimensional than Rebecca Harper. VanCamp really excels at playing the tortured yet refined rich-girl out to revenge the wrongs committed against her family. I am really looking forward to seeing where all VanCamp can take her character.

As for Joshua Bowman as Daniel Grayson, VanCamp's love interest on the show, I don't have much to say about him except that I was convinced I had seen him somewhere before. A quick glance at his sparse imdb page proved my conviction wrong, but then it hit me - he reminds me of a B-side version of Robert Buckley, who played Kirby on Lipstick Jungle. Fine, fine it's a bit of a stretch....but come one, maybe just a little??

Bowman Buckley

Anyway, as a whole, I'm pretty pumped about this show. I like that the plot is fairly straightforward: Emily/Amanda is out for revenge and taking down the people that wronged her one by one. At the same time though, it feels like there is still some mystery and that we have a lot to learn about many of the key players. However, I am a bit concerned about how they plan to drag this one story on for potentially several seasons of television. I have generally always been a fan of the one-mystery-per-season format (see: Veronica Mars, Desperate Housewives), but I'm sure the writers will figure it out. After all, I had the same concern about Pretty Little Liars, but they seem to be doing fine.

And with that....I'm off to finish episode 5!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

In support of my two favorite Indian-Americans in Hollywood

Hilarious story, as I was typing the title of this post I accidentally first typed "Bollywood" instead of "Hollywood". Whoops, way to stereotype/typecast/basically defeat the entire purpose of this post.

Moving on...

Two of my favorite people in the entire entertainment biz - who just so happen to both be Indian-American, but also overall completely badass, awesome and hilarious - have recently been all over the media. So in their honor, I'm writing today's post to encourage people to support their latest endeavors!

First - Mindy Kaling - ahhh, Mindy. My soul sister. My dream bff. My fellow Dartmouth alum. My Tamil long lost cousin. I mean really, anyone who knows me even remotely well knows that I've loved Mindy for no less than 5 years. Ever since I saw her first appearance on The Office in Season 1 Episode 2's "Diversity Day", ever since I discovered her old/original/now defunct blog "Things I've Bought That I've Loved," and ever since I blitzed her (a.k.a. "emailed", for you non-Dartmouth folk) at her alum account hoping that she'd respond to me (nope - I got an automated response saying she no longer checks that account, go figure).

Anyway, Mindy's first book was released yesterday, and after pre-ordering it months ago, I received an email from yesterday morning saying that my book is being shipped to me! "Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?" looks to be an instant classic, sure to join the ranks of other comedic writers' books such as Tina Fey's "Bossypants" and Chelsea Handler's "Are You There Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea." *

If her book isn't enough for you, read her blog, check out her latest interviews, follow her on twitter, and really you guys, just type her name into google because there has been endless coverage of her lately (all wildly entertaining)!

Second - Kal Penn - Where to begin with Kal Penn. The renaissance man. Actor, comedian, Associate Director at the White House, visiting lecturer at UPenn, the man has done it all. Kal got his big break in the first Harold and Kumar film (although some may argue Van Wilder), and the third installation of this bud-fueled series comes out on Friday.

In full disclosure, I haven't actually seen the second Harold & Kumar film, Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay, but I plan to remedy that ASAP so that I can see the third one in sequence. What this blogger has seen, however, is the first Harold & Kumar more times than any other movie in existence. pride? or shame? (don't answer that, please)

Anyway, Kal Penn and his co-star John Cho (who I have loved since the days of Pie) have been on a press-binge around the country promoting their new movie. Most recently appearing on late-night shows like Jimmy Fallon and Jay Leno, Kal has also been soaking in the success of his latest guest-stint on CBS' How I Met Your Mother. Portraying Robin's therapist-now-boyfriend, Kal has found a comfortable niche within the dysfunctional HIMYM family.

If all that air-time isn't enough to satisfy your Kal Penn cravings, follow him here on twitter, where he's actually been posting a lot recently.

Moral of the story? Buy Mindy's book, go see Kal's movie, and revel in the fact that these two fantastic Indian-Americans have paved the way for my eventual Hollywood dominance (ha. ha.)

*Note: I did not choose these writers solely because they're women and so is Mindy, but because they are the first comedian writers' books I could think of. No sexism here, thankyouverymuch.

Monday, October 31, 2011

What I'm watching on TV this Fall

We are now a solid 6-8 weeks into the Fall 2011 television schedule, and I can safely say that I've almost entirely narrowed down my programming choices. With a few exceptions, I've fully decided which shows I am dating, am married to, am separated from, or have officially divorced.

Here goes:

New Girl - At times this show annoys me (ok really, just Zooey Deschanel annoys me), but I love the supporting cast so I'm sticking with it for the time being.
Harry's Law - I never actually intended to watch this, but it was on in the background one day and I ended up getting completely sucked in! I'm now three episodes in to season 2 and loving it. I also almost never watch a show without starting from the beginning, but I'm making an exception for this one.
Terra Nova - So far, so good. I'm reallllly digging this show.
Ringer - Also, so far so good, but I can see myself getting bored soon, so I'm not officially marrying this one yet.
Once Upon a Time - One episodes isn't enough to declare marriage, but suffice it to say I'm fully intrigued.

Parenthood - This season has been STELLAR.
Survivor - This season has been less-than-stellar but it's starting to turn around.
How I Met Your Mother - I know a LOT of people are annoyed with HIMYM, but I have to admit I've really enjoyed this season so far. Also, you guys, we KNOW this show isn't ending for a few more years so I think we just need to accept the fact that we're getting strung along and just enjoy the ride. One complaint, though: Kal Penn has not been as funny as I would have expected.
Hawaii Five-O - Great season so far, but makes me painfully miss Hawaii :(
Modern Family - With the exception of the last episode which was kind of a dud (where Phil takes Haley to visit his alma mater), I'm loving this season.
Grey's Anatomy - Yep, still watching, and it's been not half bad this season.
Hart of Dixie - I'm hooked, you guys. I already knew I loved Rachel Bilson more than any other female on television but the supporting cast is phenomenal as well, and I'm genuinely invested in more than one storyline already (Lemon and Lavon, Zoey and Wade)
Happy Endings - Ahhh Happy Endings. Each episode is a constant battle for me between who I love more, Max or Penny.

The Sing-Off - I only really make time to watch the Dartmouth Aires perform. Other than that, I'm not that invested. So unless someone tells me the season was just PHENOM and that I HAVE to go back and watch it all, I'm sticking with just watching the Aires.
Two Broke Girls - I got really into this show for a few weeks and then it felt like it just fell off the deep end. For now it's off my rotation unless someone tells me it got GOOD.
The Office - Off the rotation. Just can't do it anymore. Watching it started to feel like a chore so I'm just done.
Whitney - Why I even watched this in the first place, I'm not sure. I'm pretty much done with this show unless it happens to be on and I have nothing better to do.
Person of Interest - In all fairness, I said I'd give this show more than one episode to decide and I didn't do that. I watched one episode, got bored, and gave up. Should I go back and catch up, you guys???
Private Practice - Ok I haven't officially separated with it yet, but I've been talking about doing so for YEARS, and yet I still keep going back. Someone get me out of this relationship, please. It brings me NO joy, yet I can't quit it.

Up All Night - I couldn't even make it through episode one.
Free Agents - This one wasn't a divorce by choice - got cancelled before I was ready to let it go. Sad!
The Playboy Club - Also couldn't make it through episode one. Also got cancelled.
Glee - Divorced this one a long long time ago, but since I havent posted in over a year I figured I'd clarify that for everyone.
Desperate Housewives - Divorced it when I couldn't make it through the end of last season.
Gossip Girl - Just couldn't bring myself to start this season, and from what I've been hearing, there's absolutely no reason to go back and try.

So what about y'all? What's everyone watching and loving this fall? Or hating? What am I glaringly missing from my lineup? Let's hear it!

TV Theme Songs

So I was watching Survivor last week (yes, I still watch Survivor, get over it), and I realized that it deeply upsets me that CBS doesn't play the full Survivor opening credits anymore (except for maybe during the premiere and finale episodes). Survivor's theme song has always been one of my favorites on television, to the point where I actually downloaded an mp3 of it many many years ago.

Anyway, this realization got me thinking about other favorite theme songs/opening credits of mine, which I will now lovingly share with you all. And for those who are curious, I judge my favorites on the basis of whether or not I fast forward through the 30-ish second intro on my DVR. For the following shows I never ever fast forward through the intro.

[DISCLAIMER: This post in no way portrays itself as a list of the best theme songs of all simply lists some of my favorite theme songs]

1. Survivor (duh)

This is the opening credits for the current season of Survivor. Every season's theme varies slightly, but the integrity of the song remains the same.

2. Veronica Mars


Season 3 remix:

While Veronica Mars' theme song remains one of my all-time favorites, I know the darkening/emo-ing of it in Season 3 was a highly controversial move. I, personally, fell in the camp of loving the edited theme song but I know there are many who don't. I just thought the mood of the theme fit the darker mood of Season 3 perfectly. Those who agree/disagree - discuss in the comments.

3. Hawaii Five-O

Yes, I faithfully watch the reboot of Hawaii Five-O. So sue me. Now I fully acknowledge that the original intro is definitely the more "classic" of the two, but I chose to include the current version of it because it reminds me of the most beautiful place in the world that I was lucky enough to call home for one year.

4. Parenthood

You guys, I'll just go ahead and say it: Parenthood is my favorite show on TV right now. Without LOST I feel lost (lolz), and Parenthood is the only thing that comes close to filling that void. That could be why I love the theme song so much, but I think it has more to do with the fact that Bob Dylan's "Forever Young" is so iconic, and the fact that I absolutely love the baby/childhood pictures of the actors on the show.

5. The Office

Absolute perfection. Also, the source of one of my favorite stories of all time: back in college (senior year, I believe) this was my cell phone ring tone. A dear friend of mine, whom we shall call "S", knew it as my ring tone first and foremost, rather than as The Office theme. When we graduated and she moved to DC, someone living next door to her apparently marathoned The Office on DVD regularly. She told me that at first she thought someone had the same ringtone as me and their phone just went off every 30 minutes. Lol.

6. Friday Night Lights

Unfortunately, I couldn't find the actual television sequence for the FNL opening credits on youtube so this will have to do. This theme song is absolutely one of the most beautiful pieces of music written for television (composed by W.G. Snuffy Walden, but inspired by the music of Explosions in the Sky), and is absolute perfection in setting the mood for the show.

7. Friends


8. [Guest Entry] True Blood

Now, let's be honest, I don't actually watch True Blood because it completely creeps me out. But when I asked my bff K for her entry into the list she suggested this. And while I have a hard time even watching the entire opening sequence (why so much blood WHY), I have to admit it's pretty captivating. And according to K, it sets up the tone of the show perfectly.

Well that's all I've got for you today, folks! I'm sure I will think of approx 203984293 more theme songs that I love (Fresh Prince, West Wing, etc.) but I'm bored of writing this post right now and need to cut myself off before I get so bored that I stop posting entirely.

Comment away!

I'm back!!

Dear (few) faithful blog readers,

After a 17 month absence, I have decided to get this blog back up and running. I'd like to say it's because I've been hit with tons of profound and inspired thoughts that I just had to get on "paper", but in reality, I'm bored at home and figured what else do I have to do?

Also, I recently had the "inspiration" to write a post about TV theme songs. So there's that.

Anyway, I've decided to try and write about more than just television (although I'm keeping the blog title the same), so if anyone has any thoughts/suggestions on other things I could write about, let me know! But let's be honest - my expertise extends beyond television into the realms of candy, window shopping, being lazy, and not much else - so that's probably all you'll get.

With much love,

Your favorite MIA blogger, P.