Pop Culture

An Even Worse (Possibly Racist) Version of Rebecca Black

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I really thought that after the whole Rebecca Black thing came and went, there would be nothing else to say.

The teenage girl's annoying, she's singing about a day of the week, it's extremely low budget, blah blah blah.

But apparently the Ark Music Factory's mantra is "if it ain't broke, don't fix it," because Lord help us, THERE IS ANOTHER ONE.

And even though I'm sure you will be tired of hearing about it soon, perhaps before I even hit "publish" on this post, dang it if I just can't help commenting on it.

So without further ado I introduce to you (unless you have already seen it in the 18 hours between when I am writing this and the time it goes live, which is entirely likely) Alison Gold's future chart-bottoming hit, "Chinese Food." [ video below ]

It's like this entire operation is just the result of a never-ending game of Whose Line Is It Anyway in which Wayne Brady has to make up songs about mundane things shouted from the audience while Laura Hall and Linda Taylor accompany them on a saxophone and keyboard. (I have no good explanation as to why I remember their names so specifically without looking it up but just BE COOL okay it's my journey.)

At least Rebecca's song had some semblance of chronology. She wakes up, has cereal, goes out with her friends. That at least counts as a story if you pretend you are five years old and have been raised by wolves and never heard sentences before. But compared to "Chinese Food," the storyline of "Friday" is like the autotuned version of The Odyssey or something.

First of all, I'm almost certain this video is racist. It kind of feels like that sketch on SNL with Taran Killam and Vanessa Bayer where they're trying to pay homage to Japanese culture but really are trivializing it and mocking it and we're like the disgruntled teacher behind the camera trying to explain to them that this is NOT OKAY.

Second of all, why the bears? Why all of a sudden ALL the bears, you guys? First Miley, then this. Men dressed up in bear costumes are not like a hip thing people are doing now. Let's just leave the bears out of it. What did they ever do to you?

Third, if nothing else, the entire premise is just a farce. NO ONE likes Chinese food THIS much. I mean yes, I love Pei Wei as much as the next white girl who's never been to China, but COME ON. If some terrible dictator comes up to you one day and gives you the opportunity to eat free Chinese food any time you want for the rest of your life, on the condition that you also give up pizza forever, NO ONE WOULD TAKE THAT DEAL. Because pizza is one of the single most delicious foods on the face of the planet.

If this song was about pizza, I would change my tune entirely and probably just slow clap at the end as a single tear ran down my cheek. Even despite the bears.

In conclusion, this video was unbelievably insane and would improve a million fold if it was about pizza instead.

What was your favorite part? Mine was probably watching a middle-aged African American man try to imitate a Chinese accent while rapping about egg rolls dressed like half a panda bear. But that's just me.

A Campaign Against British Actors Using American Accents

Super-Clyde Today I need to get something off my chest. Something that has been grating on my nerves for a while now, basically ever since Perks of Being a Wallflower came out.

The Brits have set a precedent. Their culture is filled with propriety and tea and King Charles Spaniels and Benedict Cumberbatch and we have come to know and love it. We will never be as classy as them, and we have come to accept that because we have Beyonce and Friday Night Lights.

But to be fair, they have the trump card: the accent. I mean I like my country and everything, but it's a proven fact that British accents are 800% more charming than American ones.

They are delightful. A British accent can make anything sound pleasant: cuss words, politics, traveling through time and space...even advertising. I had the joyful surprise of hearing a British voice on the end of my phone call to place an ad order for work the other day (he even called it an "advert" you guys), and I swear I felt the tension leave my shoulders. Could British accents have healing powers? That's a topic for another day.

There are varying brands of British accents, just like there are in the states (Southern, Midwestern, Northern). I don't know what the categories are in England, besides "Russell Brand style" and "everyone else," but I know British people can tell a difference.

In light of this, I have long championed Emma Watson's accent as the quintessential, perfect British accent. It's soothing, proper and delightful. Everything you want in an accent.

One sad day, after Harry Potter had come and gone (don't let me think about that too long), Emma decided to do a movie entitled Perks of Being a Wallflower.

Now, this movie was actually a pretty good movie, I do have to say. But the absolute worst part of it was that Emma Watson ABANDONED her perfect accent in lieu of an American one.

It is a travesty. A TRAVESTY, I tell you.

She did the same thing in the Bling Ring and I can't even watch the movie because the trailer made me so depressed. She talks like Paris Hilton and I can't. EVEN.

Yesterday I discovered online the pilot that CBS didn't pick up for Rupert Grint's TV show, Super Clyde. Did you know he was making an American show for network television? I sure didn't. But I was intrigued.

So I clicked on the link to CBS's website to watch the pilot. I knew there was a distinct possibility he could have made the same mistake as young Emma, but I prayed it wasn't true. Maybe he was a British foreign exchange student. Maybe it was set in England. Maybe his family just moved to the U.S. All viable options.

But no. HE ABANDONED HIS ACCENT TOO. The show actually wasn't terrible (from what I saw--I haven't finished it yet) and I probably would've watched it at least for a season just to support him, but it literally does not even sound like him. Neither did Emma's characters.

How is it possible that British voices immediately become unrecognizable upon speaking with an American accent? Is that true with all accents?

Rupert's wasn't even a great American accent, to be honest. I'm kind of AWARE he's pretending to be American. Like there's a word here or there that's just TOO Boston-y in a sea of generic American words or something. Like it's a hodgepodge of American accents that doesn't occur in nature. That's probably what they think when we do British accents.

But that's beside the point.

The point is THIS: Why on God's green earth would you CHOOSE to have an American accent instead of your perfectly charming British one? I mean sure it distances yourself from your Harry Potter past but, to quote Ann Perkins, God, at what cost?!

Are you not aware of the complete infatuation we have with your TV shows? If BBC gave Rupert Grint a TV show and he kept his accent and it was even a half-decent show, WE WOULD WATCH IT.

Emma. Rupert. What are you doing? You don't have to become someone you're not just to continue your success. Especially not become an American. We already have too many of those, anyway. We like you just the way you are.

I have also read recently that David Tennant is on board for an AMERICAN VERSION OF BROADCHURCH. Now, I have already gushed about that show extensively on Xtra Bacon and on Twitter, so you know how I feel about that show, and I can't tell you how appalled I am. They are already signed on for a second season of the British version, so this makes even less sense.

But the real cherry on top of this poop sundae of awfulness is that David is going to use an American accent. It was hard enough having to accept his real Scottish accent after watching him do a British one in Doctor Who, but at least he was staying true to his roots. Now I have to watch him be a less-charming AMERICAN?

Who is in charge of this?

British People: KEEP YOUR ACCENTS. We like it better and you will make more money. No need to stoop to our level with our working-class accents. Just be you. You're taking over everything anyway, you might as well do it while tricking us into thinking we're getting something out of it. Say anything with that accent and we will just nod and drool.

And if Benedict Cumberbatch stars in a new ABC drama with an American accent, SO HELP ME.

Who do you think has the perfect British accent? Are you ok with Brits doing American accents? 

Why Having to "Choose an Ad" Infuriates Me

choose ad LM

In this new age of watching TV online, networks and advertisers have tried many approaches to keep making money. Anything to keep us from watching TV for free. I mean, I understand. Gotta make that paper. Part of this comes in the form of them requiring a paid subscription to access additional content. Recently it apparently means having to wait 8 days to watch an episode on Hulu for free which forces you to go to the network website and THEN login with your cable provider information to watch it. But whatever, I'm not mad about it.

Generally, though, as you know, money is made by advertisements being played during our shows and videos. They come in all shapes and sizes, but typically you're seeing the same Audi ad 6 times in 15-second increments. Some of the network players even make you watch about ten of them in between segments. Which, whatever, I'm not mad about that either. Even though you can't set a precedent of allowing the world to watch an episode for free the day after it airs or only showing two 15-second ads during breaks, and then change it for the worse. No take-backs, networks and Hulu! Ugh. Again, I'm not mad about it.

The most infuriating part of all of this, though, is when the program asks me to CHOOSE an ad. Choose one.

I cannot tell you how angry this makes me. It's so patronizing.

It's like, "hey tiny child, I'm a bully and I'm going to punch you in the face, ok? That's going to happen. I'm going to punch you in the face. BUT don't even worry about it because you get to CHOOSE which side of your face I punch--left or right. You get to be a part of the process of deciding how you get punched in the face! Isn't that great?! Okay, I'm going to stand here and stare at you until you choose."

No. No, TV people. It is NOT great.

When my show pauses and you say "which ad experience would you prefer?" (by the way, adorable that you call it an "experience.") or "please choose a video" or something to that effect, I am filled with indignant rage.

Don't act like you're doing me some great favor by allowing me to choose my mode of torture, okay? Just play one and get it over with.

Because otherwise I WILL just sit there as the clock counts down until you proceed with one for me. I refuse to negotiate with terrorists, okay? I will not be party to your silly game.

I'm pretty sure Google already owns my identity anyway so just use that information for your dumb demographics and let me get back to The Mindy Project, which I am now watching on FOX's pathetic excuse for a video player after having spent about 5 minutes going from Hulu to Fox to The Mindy Project to the login page back to The Mindy Project. But whatever, I'm not mad.

And no, I will never have enough money to buy an Audi. So you can just take that information and show me android phone ads (again, adorable) and laundry detergent commercials. I literally could not care less, because I'm checking Tweetbot while you're talking.

Do you choose your ad or give Hulu ad feedback? Have you endured this nonsense of having to watch shows on the network's site using cable login info?

The Journey of Hate-Liking a Pop Song

the-history-of-pop-music I used to be defiant against pop music. I know--me? Defiant? But I was. Y'all, I'm not proud of it, but there was a time in my life in which I wore a choker with a guitar pick on it. I listened to Good Charlotte and Simple Plan. I didn't dress in all black, but I did refuse to listen to anything that was on top 40 radio. Except Avril Lavigne, because in my head she was this cool rocker chick, even though she actually was a pop star, and therefore played on the radio. Let's just be honest. There is nothing rock and roll about "Complicated," okay?

Anyway, all this to say even though I rocked out pretty hard to some pop-punk that could hardly be considered edgy, I refused to acknowledge that songs like "Toxic" were catchy. But in my defense, according to the internet, top songs in 2004 also included things like "Milkshake," Hilary Duff and Ashlee Simpson. So y'know. I didn't have a lot to work with.

My last year of high school and into college I learned to accept that some songs, however popular, are just darn catchy. Sometimes you find yourself belting "Just Dance" in your car. Whatevs. No judgement.

Even though nowadays I am fairly "come one, come all" with pop music, I still often find myself in a state of defiance against certain songs. You've been there, right? Either they're just not good quality, or they're packed with sleezy lyrics, or you have a thing against the artist…you just don't like the song and decidedly never will.

I'm here to tell you that you will eventually like that song.If you never hear it again, that's one thing. But if it's as widespread as all of the other junk that's out there on the radio, you WILL hear it again whether you like it or not. In a store at the mall. On a commercial. On an audition for The Voice.

It will come back. And you will succumb to it.

Let me map out for you the stages of how it will happen:

  1. First listen - you hear the song for the first time. You wrinkle your nose. "Ugh, I hate this," you declare, and you either change the channel or finish it out to give it a fair shot and close out of YouTube.
  2. It starts popping up everywhere. On the radio. In your Twitter Feed. On TV. Where is it coming from? You groan every time it comes on. "I hate this song!" you exclaim. Everyone thinks you're dramatic, but you don't care. This song is the worst and we shouldn't be subjected to it.
  3. You catch yourself humming along to the song subconsciously while driving. You didn't notice it had come on while you were trying to figure out how to get to that restaurant for your friend's birthday, but now it's two minutes in and you're...SINGING IT? You realize this, then quickly gasp and let out an "ugh!" dripping with shame and anger before turning the channel.
  4. You've begun thinking twice before turning the channel when it comes on. You reach for the presets out of instinct, but you decide against it. You might bob your head a little bit. Sing along to parts of the chorus. You start hating yourself a little bit inside for giving way.
  5. You suddenly realize you know all the words to the first verse and the chorus. What is happening to you? The song comes on and your heart flutters a bit. You haven't heard it in a few days and you refuse to download it out of principle, so you throw caution to the wind and belt it out in your car. No one is there to see your utter betrayal of convictions anyway.
  6. You see that you must now make a choice. You either like this song enough to admit it--even download it, or you go back to refusing to listening to it. If you truly don't like it, that is. Which you don't. Right? But you can't just never listen to it again. You would miss it. Why? That's right, because you, dear one, LIKE. THIS. SONG. Now hang your head in shame and walk to your computer, pull up iTunes and hit "purchase," because you have just been seduced by a pop song.

This has happened to me on several occasions. And since I have historically been unwilling to swallow my pride when it comes to these things, I typically just go on acting like I still don't like it when really my heart is changing. This continues until I can no longer deny it and I either have to cave and download it or just shrug and sing along in the car, because at this point, I know all the lyrics.

[True story: my husband once gifted me a song on iTunes so I wouldn't have to abandon my principles and download it myself. I'm not saying I'm proud of it. But I am saying my husband humors my insanity, which makes him the greatest.]

Has this ever happened to you? If so, what song? I'll go first: this has happened so many times, but "Super Bass" by Nicki Minaj is the first one that comes to mind. I can now rap the entire thing. And I love it.

I Will Stop (If You Ask Nicely): Perspectives from the Anti-Miley

miley-cyrus-we-cant-stop-1-650-430 me at age 20               Miley at age 20                                        Me at age 20                                                                               (there is nothing even remotely alcoholic in                                                                                that cup)

There are a lot of ways in which I am different from Miley Cyrus. I'm not a child star. My name is generally considered an actual name. I tend to wear clothes in public. Just to name a few.

Perhaps one of the greatest of these, though is my fundamental natural regard for rule-following and the observation of societal norms. From birth, I have perfected the art of being the goodie two-shoes I was created to be, conscience annoyingly ever-present in every situation, whether I liked it or not.

Everyone else blatantly cheating on a super hard pop quiz? Nope, not me. I'll just take a B minus while everyone else gets 100. But hey at least I got the feeling of a job well done, right? (I should have taken the 100.) Playing tricks on a girl at a sleepover? I'll watch from over here, thanks. If the light's been red for five minutes and there's no one around and it's like 11:30 p.m., I still wait. I once cried because a teacher accused me of skipping class when really we were allowed to go home after our AP test.

Due to this I would even dare to call myself the anti-miley in pretty much every way. If someone had given me a global stage and told me to write a song reflecting my worldview and general approach to life, it would have been very different.

It's our party, but I gotta be home by midnight because of my 8am class I took because I needed to have some time open to work my minimum wage on-campus job. La da de da de, I respect authority. I dance conservatively and only occasionally at best. I do take things from somebody and will probably remember it later and cry about it. I will stop. If you ask me to. I, in fact, try to minimize the haters and would really rather people not judge me. Especially God. His standards are not low, you know.

I don't know how kids lost this fear of doing wrong. Since when is "I do wut I wawnt" an acceptable approach to anything past age 3? I blame society for lack of consequences. I'm aware that I sound about 100 years old right now but those darn kids and their rock and roll music!

I'm just saying caring what other people think is not always a bad thing, you know? I mean yes, I could stand to let go of some of it, but you know what? I've never used a foam finger or a sledge hammer for anything other than their intended purposes. I usually keep my tongue in my mouth. I've never slapped a stranger's butt while millions of people watched.

Sometimes fear protects you from things, like speeding trains and US Weekly features. And I for one am glad that my intrinsic rule-following and fear of judgement is actually paying off.

Do you feel like you care too much about what other people think? Where has this paid off or not paid off for you?

Alternatively, Miley's new one is kind of good if you keep your eyes closed when the video is playing, right?

Adam Levine Launches the World's Laziest Fashion Line at K-mart

adam levine white tee

Some pop icons are known for their style. Lauren Conrad. Emma Watson. For some reason, Kim Kardashian. People look at them and think, man, I'd love to have a reasonably-priced version of that outfit. Which is why two of the three of those people have fashion lines at Kohl's. (I mean buy me anything Lauren Conrad and I'm good to go. Seriously.) As well they should.

Someone who should not? Adam Levine. But he does now.

Look. I love Adam Levine as much as the next warm-blooded American with two ears and a heart, but a fashion line? At K-Mart?

First of all isn't his style just white v-necks and skinny jeans? Don't they already sell those? A reasonably priced version of a white v-neck is called the Hanes tagless tee. Done and done.

Second of all, let's just be real here for a second. Does anyone still shop at K-Mart? They do a LOT of advertising for a store that every time I see their storefront, the inside is empty and the K is like hanging off and there are rust marks where the m-a-r-t used to be in a strip mall that also housed things like a payday loan service and a recycling center in the parking lot. I'm asking.

Is K-Mart just the low-hanging fruit of the fashion industry? Do they have a screening process at all?

I just did some research, and here are some OTHER people who currently have K-Mart lines:

Nicki Minaj (WHAT) Sofia Vergara (I love her but she is not the everywoman.) Jaclyn Smith, a former Charlie's Angel Selena Gomez

I'm just saying this seems a little bit like a motley crew. And now we're adding Adam Levine?

PICK A MARKET, KMART. Do the people who shop at K-Mart really want to dress like Nicki Minaj or Adam Levine? Are we even playing to our strengths here? Again, I'm asking.

The article goes on to say that Adam Levine's fashion line will consist of cargo jackets, button down shirts and baseball caps. AKA the most generic things ever. Which is what Adam Levine wears. If he even wears a shirt at all.

He looks like Adam Levine because of his hair and his tattoos and his torso that seems to ever end. Not because of what he wears, which does not have a style.

I don't know who is behind this but maybe they just needed a guy for their collection of celebrities and Adam was the only one fame-hungry enough to do it. He has a perfume line too, you know. Which apparently is NOT selling out, you guys, even though he tweeted that celebrity fragrances should be punishable by death two years ago [see article here for more info on that trainwreck].

So Adam Levine, you just keep doing you and making money and we'll just keep not shopping at K-mart.

Who do you think K-mart should enlist next? Better yet, what do you think Adam Levine should endorse next? I vote temporary tattoos.

90s Kids Rule the World


I've started to hate being called a Millenial. I don't know if I even fit the category, having been born in 1988 (holla), but it usually has a negative connotation. Like all we do is text emojis and complain. And it's like, I only do that SOME of the time, okay? I contribute to society. I have a job. I don't expect people to just give me stuff. Usually.

I prefer the term 90's Kid.

And 90's Kids ARE contributing to society. 90's Kids are finally old enough to start grabbing some higher-level jobs. They're moving up in their companies or finding fame on the Internet and we are taking over.

Do you know how I know this?

Destiny's Child reunion.

*Nsync reunion.


Buzzfeed "articles" with pictures of discontinued cereals.

Girl Meets World.

These things are happening, you guys. And you know why? Because 90's kids made it happen. 90's kid corporate guys got together and were like, "You know what would be totally awesome? If we pulled in the rest of *Nsync to sing with Justin on the VMA's. Let's get on a call about that and circle back and create synergy and [insert other buzzwords here]. See you at Ultimate in Central Park later."


Things that we never thought possible are happening all around us, all for the sake of nostalgia for other 90's kids.

Middle aged dads? Thirty-something moms? Teenagers? Who cares? Their target market is finally their own peers, who now have some expendable income and are ignoring Dave Ramsey when he tells them to invest it in Roth IRAs whatever that means and are instead using it to buy Doctor Who collectibles online so MARKET TO THEM.

It's totally working. The VMAs (probably) had more viewership than ever. And let's be honest, we came for the *Nsync. But I won't talk about the VMAs because it would bring up another individual whom I have sworn not to write about this week (her name rhymes with Biley Fyrus.)

Yes, 90's kids are ruling the world. And I, for one, am going to enjoy it before Buzzfeed crumbles and 2000's kids start creeping in and talking about like…I don't know…when Justin Bieber wore real pants and American Idol was still good? The Wiggles? I don't know what 2000's kids like.

What do you miss most about the 90's?

Confession: I'm Tired of Bruno Mars


Y'all, I have a confession: I am tired of Bruno Mars.

Yes, he's talented and whatever but I'm just over it.

It's just, he's on every radio station at all times, and I don't think I can take it anymore.

When I first heard about Bruno Mars, I liked him a lot. He was a songwriter for the stars so you know he's talented, and he's coming out from behind the scenes to make it on his own. I appreciate this approach and like that the people behind the hits are emerging to sing their songs themselves (see also: Jessie J).

First he was featured on a B.o.B. song, which I mean, can't go wrong there. I'm on board. Then "Just The Way You Are" came out and he was unavoidable. No matter. It's catchy and he can sing, plus it was an adorable song about liking a woman just the way she is and what girl doesn't want to hear that, y'know?

I really got on board during the "Grenade" season. I mean yes, I heard it until my ears bled, but it was a solid song, especially when sung acoustically on youtube. By him, that is. Not by every 18 year old with a guitar and a webcam. If I heard it today on my way home I would not change the channel.

But then came "The Lazy Song" in which he references throwing his hand down his pants and later mentioning just casually having "some really nice sex" and I was like, okay, Bruno, just because this has that generic happy ukelele accompaniment and sounds all innocent does not mean you can throw those kinds of phrases in there and still seem like a respectable musician who like, yeah, he's a pop star, but really he's a songwriter first, y'know? No. I revoke that privilege. You are now a full blown pop star, just like the rest of them.

That is when it started to derail for me.

Glee started singing every one of his songs, including "Marry Me" which is kind of adorable but you can't just be adorable and then sing about putting your hand down your pants and not expect me to be disgusted by you.

I mean just pick a lane, Bruno Mars. Am I mad at Kanye for being a douche? No, because he owns it. I'm mad at you because you try to act like this sensitive songwriter type who gets women and then churn out crap like that. Not allowed.

Then you're back with "Locked Out of Heaven" which is a fantastic song musically but also kind of sleezy in lyrical content and further adds to my iffy stance on how to feel about you. Again I say, PICK A LANE.

Then comes that song about how you should've bought your girlfriend flowers and paid more attention to her and we're supposed to sympathize with you and think you're sweet? Uh no, Bruno mars, because YOU'RE RIGHT. YOU SHOULD HAVE DONE THOSE THINGS. But you didn't, and life has consequences. You can't just sing sappy songs about it and expect her (or us) to feel sorry for you and have other girls come fall at your feet and then treat them the exact same way because I assume writing a song does not change behavior.

It's not like you finished it out with "I know I have been selfish but I learned from my experience and went to therapy and everything and now I'm totally ready to be in a mature adult relationship and do things like make budgets and cut in when we paint so my wife can use the roller because she likes it better and clean out the litter box even though I did it last time just because I know it makes her gag."

No, you did not say that, Bruno, and I'm willing to bet it's not just because it would be a terrible rhyme. I'm pretty sure you would treat the next girl the same way because you literally just got done rambling on about how some girl's sex takes you to paradise so you need to slow your roll a bit there, guy.

I'm just saying Bruno Mars is kind of like that guy in high school who makes all the girls swoon but screws them over and moves on to the next one but the new girls won't believe the ex-girlfriends because they think they're just jealous but really it's just that Bruno is kind of a douche.

I don't like wishy-washy is all I'm saying. It's "Grenade" or "Lazy Song," okay? Just pick one and I'm good. Or just cover that one Amy Winehouse song over and over because I was totally on board with that.

I will give him props for his choreographed band (present in the Amy Winehouse cover video linked above). They dance in perfect sync while playing things like bass and trombone. I'm not mad at that.

I feel like I got off track assessing his character from song lyrics, but seriously, the dude is everywhere and my ears are weary of that slightly hoarse R&B tenor of his.

How do you feel about Bruno Mars? Secretly sleezy or genuinely charming? 

P.S. I found out in researching a bit for this post that Bruno Mars' real name is Peter Gene Hernandez. And he is only three years older than me. #depressingfacts

We Might Be Rid of Chris Brown Forever (Ev-Ev-Ever)

chris brown puppy

Step away from the puppy, Chris Brown.

YOU GUYS. Rejoice with me.

This could be it.

You know how in the future we'll be all like, "hey remember the last time you saw Chris Brown?" and the other person will be like "Y'know, I don't! It's been so long...when was that...2013?"


And praise the Lord for that. After much long-suffering on the public's part - watching through weekly run-ins with the boys in blue, Twitter battles, assault charges, and terrible music to boot - I think we deserve a break.

In fact I think we've deserved a break for a long time. Ever since I wrote this post in APRIL OF 2012 asking him to reign it in. Or at least stop throwing stuff.

The day might be finally glittering on the horizon, like a Hawaiian sunset of peace and joy and happiness that simultanously silences a psychotic rapper.

That's the dream.

That one day Chris Brown will just be that guy who hurt Rihanna (how dare he) and nothing more.

His tweets (via Huffington Post, not my Twitter feed, to be clear) indicate that he will probably hang up his wifebeater after his next studio album, "X," which comes out Aug. 20.

He goes on to say that this is because he is tired of being known for a "mistake" he made when he was 18.

chris brown tweet quitting music

I get it. It kind of sucks for you. But how about thinking twice before beating up a woman, okay? And think three times before doing it to a famous woman. And think four times to realize that you, too, are famous and are in a highly-publicised relationship and OF COURSE it will ruin your life.

Also it's not just the Rihanna incident. It's the endless parade of crazytown that the Rihanna incident launched. It's the chair-throwing. It's the fits of rage. It's the "altercation" after "altercation." NO. Just NO.

Plus you did that in 2009, okay? 2009 was not that long ago. Four years. So yes, you made a mistake when you were 18, but you are now only 22, ok? Also being 18 is not an excuse. Look at the world. Millions of 18 year olds NOT beating people up. Sure there are a few that probably are, but the overwhelming majority is NOT getting arrested for giving Rihanna a black eye, okay? So don't act like this is just some phase 18 year olds go through. NEWSFLASH: It's not.

While we're at it, same goes to you, Biebs. Just because I will continue to root for you and hope you turn your own personal crazytrain around does not mean I will stand for your behavior and the fact that it gets written off as you just "being 19." NO. Again, SEVERAL 19 year olds are walking around every day, NOT peeing in buckets. I'm just saying.

[RECORD SCRATCH] Update, 9:16 a.m.: I just did the math (and went to Wikipedia) and he is most definitely 24. And this most definitely happened in 2009. YOU WERE NOT EVEN 18. So on top of everything else, he's a liar. In case you were wondering.

So in conclusion, Chris Brown, it's been fun (not really), but get on up outta here. Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

Do you think he has a point or do you think he needs to leave us alone already? Who else do you think should throw in the towel?

Country Music: The Potluck of Genres

I wanted to come to you today with a theory I've been developing for a while. This is the product of years of extensive research (read: being alive) and studying (read: listening to music). I haven't presented it to any institutions for publication yet, but I think it's pretty well supported by empirical evidence.

Before I submit this theory to an academic journal, I thought I would make my case to you.

My theory is this: country music is the most blindly accepting of all genres.

Gone are the days in which you must be an old white guy wearing cowboy hat singing about a dead dog or whatever.

Country music's "come one, come all" attitude allows them to welcome anyone with any semblance of notoriety or a good publicist and play the crap out of them on the radio.

Did you win American Idol? Come on over. Did you win American Idol after the three original judges had left and are like 12 years old? Door's open. Been around for 30 years and still cranking out music? You make it, we'll play it. Change your name to Chris Gaines but decide maybe it wasn't the best idea after all? Welcome back. Collaborate with Nelly? Why not? Used to be in a 90's alt band and go by the name Hootie? We've got a seat for you right here. Gradually shift from singing about Tim McGraw to wearing eyeliner and putting dubstep beats in your songs? Sure.

Literally anyone or anything can be played on country music, as long as there is at least one banjo or mandolin involved (or were involved at one point but now you're Taylor Swift and you do what you effing want).

I am continually surprised at what the country genre will put up with. Exhibit A: Darius Rucker is NOT GOOD AT COUNTRY, you guys.* It's just not his thing. Why can't you guys just tell him to go home already? He had a string of hits in the late 90's. He's Hootie, for crying out loud. HE CAN HANDLE IT. Don't patronize him (ahem, BACHELORETTE). Break it to him gently and get him out of here.

I just found out that he currently has a hit with "Wagon Wheel," which is not even his song and is not even as good as the version I saw Old Crow Medicine Show perform in a random field on Saturday night with my parents (a story for another time).

Sidebar: If Country isn't careful it's going to turn into the Christian music industry, churning out 90 different versions of the same song yearly. I can say this because I know people who are in the Christian music industry and complain about the same exact thing. So it's LEGIT, y'all.

This guy could literally go around to clubs all over these United States and play all of his Hootie hits and no one would even be mad about it. So let's stop acting like Darius Rucker needs the work, okay? Just let take off the cowboy hat and walk away with some of his dignity left intact before the academy retroactively revokes his 1996 Grammy for Best New Artist.

The country music industry lets white males wearing clothes manufactured by a hunting company inexplicably rap in the middle of their songs.

They allow people to sing about recreational drug use and Jesus on the same track. While we're at it, they allowed someone to sing about Jesus taking the wheel and everyone was okay with it (This would never happen anywhere else. Probably not even in Christian music because it had like too many notes in the melody or something).

They are the only genre that permitted Kid Rock to create more music after screaming about God knows what in 1998, AND enabled him to sing a duet with Sheryl Crow, who used to kind of be like a cool alt singer/songwriter in the 90s and now she's like easy listening but she somehow STILL passes as a country artist.

On the flip side they allow artists like The Civil Wars to be played somewhere other than our Nashville indie radio station. They give Lady Antebellum an outlet and let people who can actually sing just...sing.

When you fling the doors wide open to anyone and everyone, there's bound to be a few good ones slip through, I suppose.

But come on. Kid Rock? Whose idea was that?

Do you listen to country music? Why or why not? Also--that Chris Gaines thing--weird, right?

*I legit went to see Hootie and the Blowfish play once in college (in like 2008, to be clear) and half the songs were terrible country jams and distinctively NOT "Hold My Hand" or "Let Her Cry." I was sorely disappointed.

5 Reasons Why You Should Be Watching Doctor Who

Psst...I wrote this post for you guys. Really, I did. But I also kind of wrote it for the folks at Xtra Bacon. So jump on over by clicking here or at the end of the post to read the rest! doctor-who-matt-smith-karen-gillian-bbc


Doctor Who. It's a thing now, whether you like it or not. So let's just talk about it. I feel like enough traction has been gained surrounding this show for me to gush about it now without being met with blank stares.

Well, you will be staring blankly, because this is the Internet, but I'll pretend you're smiling and nodding enthusiastically with every word.

Today I'm going to tell you five reasons you should be watching Dr. Who.

If you've never heard of it, or you have heard of it but don't understand what the gibberish is all about, it's a British sci-fi show about a 900-year-old alien who travels through time and space saving the day. GIVE ME A MINUTE TO EXPLAIN.

The alien--a Time Lord, to be specific--goes by the name of The Doctor. No one knows his actual name, hence "Doctor Who?"

He has a time machine called the TARDIS that looks like a blue phone booth (technically a "police box"), which can travel anywhere in time and space. Therefore he can go to Rome in 84 B.C., then an unpronounceable planet in 8000 A.D., then China in 1975 and it all works because, long story short, the TARDIS can basically do anything and is indestructible.

He also travels with a companion, almost always female, almost always pretty. He travels to random places and times, finds things that are amiss and fixes them. For the most part.

On to the reasons you should be watching it:

Click here to read the rest of this post!

A Letter to the Gangnam-Style Guy About His Drinking Problem

psy gangnam style

Dear Psy,

I never thought I'd be corresponding with you. In fact, I thought you'd probably be gone by now, to be honest. Your song is 2013's Macarena. Everyone knows that. It has a dance and everything. Oh…you don't know what the Macarena is? It was this half-spanish song in the 90's that had a corresponding dance where you put your hands out one by one and then on your hips and…it's not important. Basically I am surprised your song has lasted as long as it has.

I'm not knocking you. I'm impressed, really. The fact that you managed to score a pistachio endorsement deal is beyond me. But hey, this is America, the land of opportunity. Those opportunities might require you to sell out and do some things to compromise your integrity, but they're there if you want them.

I write to you today with a somber heart, in response to some unfortunate news I stumbled upon about you. Again I am impressed with your ability to even stay in the news, but sometimes no news is good news, y'know? Or that might only apply to illnesses and not Korean pop stars hoping to have a career in American mainstream culture. But I digress.

It has recently come to my attention that you have a severe drinking problem.

Your statement bore a striking resemblence to the Bagel Bites theme song, and not in a good way:

"If I'm happy, I'm drinking, if I'm sad, I'm drinking. If it's raining, I'm drinking, if it's sunny, I'm drinking."

Ok it wasn't exactly, drinking in the morning, drinking in the evening, drinking at suppertime. But close.

It may have been the language barrier. Maybe you thought you were saying something like "breathing" or maybe you didn't know "drinking" implies "drinking alcohol" and really you're just trying to stay hydrated because you're not used to the heat in California.

But it doesn't look good, Psy.

Suddenly your nonsensical music and signature dance all makes sense. You were drunk the whole time! I can't believe we didn't realize it before.

You'll have to forgive us, though. We fell for it because often, in our culture, we have trouble distinguishing between American celebrities who are drunk and those who are just performing or chose to wear that on purpose. We don't know the difference, so good on you for capitalizing on that.

Psy, it can't go on. Your drinking may be what made you famous and allowed you to wear neon green and promote similarly colored nuts, but this will not end well.

If we've learned anything from your run as a popular icon it's that your constant drinking does not lead to the best life choices.

Sure, it gives people a reason to write off your behavior like, oh, he's just drunk again! That Psy. Always with the alcohol.

But someday it will not pay off. Someday the pistachio commercials and the meme tattoos will be just a memory and you'll be left with just a lifetime supply of nuts and a hole in your heart. And maybe keyboard cat. You must've met when you did those commercials, right? Or maybe in a meme support group? Can you introduce me to keyboard cat? I'll include my number just in case.

I mean yeah, stopping drinking probably won't further your career in the American music industry, because I think we're pretty much done here. But that doesn't mean I don't care--if only the minutest amount--about your well being and ability to go on gangnam-styling into the sunset with the ability to pass a sobriety test.

So why don't we just take a deep breath, check ourselves into rehab (but not the one that Lindsay Lohan keeps going to because obviously they are not good at their jobs), and get back out there, Psy. If not for us, for pistachios. And keyboard cat.

On a scale of 1 to "Can't Stop" by Miley Cyrus, how much do you hate "Gangnam Style?" Were any of you able to decipher that he was actually just drunk?

An Amateur Analysis of "Man of Steel"

SIDEBAR: I wrote a (very) short story over at my dear friend Nicole's blog on Friday. Seriously, we're talking a third the length of this post. Check it out here!

man of steel laura mcclellan

Once upon a time, I wrote an amateur analysis of "Brave." I had high expectations for that movie, admittedly, but it let me down in more ways than one. So I shared my thoughts here [Summary: Approx. 500% more bears than anticipated; very little character development]. Reactions were mixed--but it was fun to hear what everyone thought. So I thought I'd go there again.

On Saturday, I finally saw Man of Steel with my husband. Monsters University or Despicable Me 2 would have both come before this movie in my queue, but since it came out first, it was only fair to see this one first. (We are woefully behind because of the whole moving thing.)

I didn't have enormous expectations because I'm not necessarily a die-hard Superman fan, but most superhero movies are at least worth seeing, so I had a general expectation that it would be enjoyable.

It wasn't The Worst Move I've Ever Seen, but I definitely thought it was lacking.

Keep in mind that I like good stories and don't go see movies for special effects or action, but overall I left feeling like it was very surface level in terms of story and character development, and I wasn't invested in it hardly at all.

Here were my main issues with it: [NOTE: calling them "issues" makes it seem like I care deeply about the making of this movie or the legacy of the Superman franchise, but in reality I just have a lot of opinions about things that don't matter.]


1. I didn't care about Superman. In order for me to enjoy a movie, I need to be invested in it. I need to know at least enough to know why that person is the way he is, what gets under his skin, how he interacts with people, etc. Clark, to me, didn't make relationships or interact with people. He had like six lines in the first hour and a half of the movie. He just stood around looking solemn and broody. Don't get me wrong, he was pretty and all, and there's nothing wrong with broody, but this role is not requiring much acting from Henry Cavill at this point. The most emotion I saw him display was when he was yelling at his dad in the truck when he was a teenager.

I'm just saying, I at least need a PERSONALITY. Even if I don't have a ton of background information, show me what you are like. EMOTE. Make me want to hang out with you. Or punch you. Just don't float somewhere in between. And I don't like perfect super heroes. Give me some flaws. Give me some mistakes. Give me some regret. I just need more human elements.

Point 1 Thor for having all of these things, and still being pretty.

2. Superman looked better with a beard. I was sorely disappointed that he didn't stay scruffy. I thought it was an exponential improvement from the stereotypical Superman appearance and would have been a welcome refresh to the whole Superman look. But I'm partial to facial hair. Wouldn't you have liked him better if he kept the beard? Is it a requirement to be clean-cut and slick back your hair if you wear a cape? I'm asking.

My new mission in life is to create the first scruffy super hero. He will wear a v-neck.

3. It could have ended like three times. I mean honestly. When Zod was STILL alive after all the others got sucked into a black hole and they fought for like another three hours? Just...we get it, okay? Enough.

4. More setup, less fighting please. I know this is a total girl move, but overall this movie lacked background. I need to know how Clark just HAPPENED upon the ship. I need to know how they just flip a switch to change the air from "human compatible" to "Krypton-person (Kryptonite??) compatible." I need to know how Giselle from Enchanted who is a JOURNALIST in this film, by the way, came up with a way to create a black hole to suck the bad guys into. I need to know how they arrived at that conclusion. Too many things in this movie seemed coincidental.

Also, things that could have been fleshed out more got totally bullet-pointed, and I was left wondering what the heck just happened. Like all of a sudden Russell Crowe reappears and Clark now has a full costume and a cape and apparently had time to shave and he can fly now and WHAT. I don't understand how he could just...fly. I know he jumped and could soar because of less gravity and all, but how does that translate to FLYING and HOVERING? I NEED MORE INFORMATION.

And thanks for telling me Zod's predisposed job at the very end. Could've used that information 45 minutes ago. I would have cared more.

5. STOP RUINING BUILDINGS THERE ARE STILL PEOPLE IN THERE! Yo. Clark. The rest of the bad guys have been sucked into a black hole and Metropolis has stopped caving in on itself. Let's take the fight outside, okay? How about let's NOT flail around amid skyscrapers and send several more crashing down. Also by the way this movie could've ended 10 minutes ago.

Basically I've concluded that Dr. Who has ruined everything else for me by creating such a complex and beloved character that I can't even deal with Superman's blah-ness anymore. [But really, was him fighting Zod not just a worse version of The Doctor's face-off with The Master? Someone help me out here.]

In conclusion, Superman should've had a beard, and I need someone to make up a backstory or two for me.

Have you seen Man of Steel? What did you think? (Males, feel free to argue that fighting > story development. I won't be offended.)

10 Questions I Have About a Pretentious Rich Guy's Diet

My friend sent me an article from Buzzfeed this week called "The 24 Most Pretentious Things Ever." Isn't Buzzfeed the greatest? I think it might be the best thing to come out of the Internet so far. It doesn't make me any less jealous of the people that get to assemble silly pictures and call them articles and themselves freelance writers but WHATEVER.

The whole list is pretty great, but one in particular gave me pause. This guy's diet:

buzzfeed pretentious eating habit

Upon reading this, I immediately began to doubt my grasp of the English language. I like to think I'm pretty okay at it, considering I enjoy writing and hate poor grammar, but this thing left me reeling.

Here are a few questions and concerns I have after reading this:

  1. What are "activated" almonds? Here I am eating dumb ol' regular almonds like a commoner when I could be eating activated almonds. They probably like boost your white blood cell count or give you the ability to fly, and I'm just sitting here chomping down on my sad, pathetic, lazy almonds. Why did no one tell me about this sooner?
  2. Where does one acquire emu meatballs? Does your town have to have a local emu farmer who has a partnership with a local butcher in order to make this happen? Do you pick out your own emu to slaughter? Are we sure emus don't have feelings? If they do can we start calling them emos instead? Can we make them listen to Hawthorne Heights and put their wallets on chains? I think I've gotten off track, here. The real question is, do they taste like chicken? And if so, isn't chicken cheaper and comes with less judgement? Moving on.
  3. I don't know about you, but anything besides red Twizzlers on the licorice scale is the worst. So I'm assuming licorice tea would also be the worst. I'm not a tea connoisseur, but I feel like there has to be a better option out there.
  4. Veggies are spelled with two g's. Obviously they don't have spelling classes in Pretentious Rich Person Chef School.
  5. What are spirulina and maca? I literally have no idea what those are, and Evernote is underlining both words with a red line, which means even IT doesn't know what those are. Get out of here with that. Good rule of thumb: if the word you're using is literally not in the dictionary, you're being too pretentious.
  6. Good on you for eating cultured vegetables, because I for one would never want to eat a vegetable that didn't know the tenets of Buddhism or had never seen a real Van Gogh.
  7. Cacao nibs are just a 100% more terrible version of chocolate.
  8. Alkalised water? Really? REALLY?
  9. Who has liver pate lying around and if you did, why would you choose to put it in your mouth when there are such things as CHEEZ-ITs?
  10. If you are sautéing kale and making fresh fish at lunch time, you need a real job.

What questions do you have about this guy's eating habits? Are there any eating trends you just don't understand?

Janet Jackson Performs a Hat Trick of Questionable Decisions

As I scoured the Internet yesterday looking for something interesting to ramble on about even though no one asked me to, I found myself scraping the bottom of the barrel. It was all poorly named babies and Alec Baldwin twitter rants, and something about J.Lo accidentally complimenting an oppressive dictator. Nothing of extreme significance or intrigue. No snail invasions or weird Japanese inventions. Not even any pictures of North West.

So I called on you fine people to help me out, and you delivered with many quality suggestions. But today we are going to talk about Janet Jackson.

Or should I say, Jannat Jackson. Why would I say that, you ask?

Because ol' Jannat has married a Middle Eastern billionaire and jumped ship to Qatar. This also prompted her to convert to Islam and (wait for it) change her name to "Jannat."


First of all, if you're going to change your name, go big or go home. You can't just shift some letters around to a slightly more Arabic-looking spelling and call it a day.

SIDEBAR: Do you think she walks around and when people say, "Hey Janet!" (or "[insert Arabic word for "hey" here] Janet!") she smiles politely but corrects them with a slight air of condescension, "Actually, it's Jah-NAHT," and they smile and nod apologetically but when she walks away they roll their eyes and do that fake-gag pantomime and whisper things like "who does she think she is?" and "I always liked Michael better."?

I think they totally do. You see, other countries are not so different from us, after all.

Second of all, let's just rein it in a bit, Jan-NAHT. Let's do a little self inventory. When a man's presence in your life causes you to make drastic decisions and literally change your identity, you should take a minute to think about whether or not this is a healthy relationship. I know, I know, he's kind of pretty in a Bond-villan kind of way and has a billion dollars but SO DO YOU, Jan-NAHT. So do you. Or you did. I'm not really sure where that "Together Again" money is now.

But you coined the term "wardrobe malfunction" at the Super Bowl with Justin Timberlake! That was you! I'm just saying, you're not hurting for money, okay? So let's pump the breaks a little bit on moving across the ocean and taking on a new religion AND changing your name. If you feel like you have to be someone else for Wissam Al Mana, then dang it, he is not good enough for you, Janet.

You are even giving up your music career so that he can have a private life? Come on, Janet. That's not you. That's the David Blane look-alike talking. Don't you want to wear clothing inappropriate for your age and lip sync to autotuned lyrics in front of thousands of people? Don't you want to wear a hands-free Britney mic and writhe around with dancers who were born after your last number one single was released? I know you do. It's who you are. Let's not deny yourself that for a few measly bucks and a businessman who wears hoodies and wishes he was Eminem.

Janet, you're better than this. You're better than Jah-NAHT.

Let me be clear, though. Please don't hear me saying I want you to return to music. I really don't. But I want you to have the OPTION. Because you are Janet Freaking Jackson, ma'am. Sister to THE Michael Jackson. Get back out there and make terrible music. Because this is America, and you can.

Where were you during The Great Wardrobe Malfunction of 2004?

"I Hate The New Miley Song So Hard" - A Poem By Yours Truly


This is an original poem centered entirely around how much I loathe the new Miley Cyrus song and video (above).


How do I hate thee, Miley video? Let me count the ways. I hate your misleading scenes slicing off fake fingers, and "hey, Just for kicks, let's bleed pink Gak!" Oh, you don't remember Gak? That's because you were two years old. Billy Ray was still partyin' in the back.

I hate the way you shake your badonk and writhe in see-through clothes. I hate the way you lick the air like anything raunchy goes.

I hate the dancing teddy bears. I hate that you clutch others' butts. You used to be Hannah Montana. Now you just have ridiculous haircuts.

I hate your obvious drug references and invoking of God's name. I know you think he's not judging you, but I'm pretty sure this is fair game.

I hate that you chose to let people shoot smoke out of a hose held in their crotches. I hate that you can't keep your gum in your mouth and really, your face, to be honest.

I hate that you brought bread into this. What did it ever do to you? Why did you make money sandwiches and hoard piles of the slices too?

I hate the product placement for those round chapsticks. I especially hate all the tongues. I hate the creepy floating mask. I wish this had never been sung.

I hate that you idolize strip clubs. Don't you know they degrade women? I hate that you think you're a thug. Don't you dare think about putting a grill in.

I hate that this video got so many views, And of those I was at least three. I hate that I don't know what twerking is Or why you insist on making it your thing.

So count me as one of your haters. See if I even care. Because I hate this song with all my heart. ...I'm gonna go listen to "Party in the USA" again and pretend this never happened.


What is your least favorite part of this obnoxious crazy parade?

In Memoriam: The Ringtone

3595I remember my first polyphonic ringtone. I got my new Nokia cell phone with the interchangeable hard case and its color screen for Christmas and could not wait to break it open, go online and chose a ringtone. Polyphonic ringtones were all the rage at the time. No longer did you have to suffer through the intolerable midi note-by-note rendition of your favorite pop song, but you could now have a bassline and a melody. Right and left hands simultaneously. Sure, it was still midi and sounded like a bad karaoke track, but it was POLYPHONIC.

No matter that we had never heard the word polyphonic before this and would never use it again after the fad faded, polyphonic was the holy grail of personalization.

Your ringtone was an extension of yourself. It announced to the world (loudly), 'here I am, and I listen to Fall Out Boy, and I think that is an acceptable representation of my taste in music and therefore personality.' Then people could judge you accordingly. Especially if your phone rang during something like graduation or church or English class (my English teacher took it upon himself to answer your phone for you if it rang. It was horrifying.).

I did not take this decision lightly.

I remember it well. We were at my grandparents' house in Calgary, Alberta (Canada, for those of you who are not Mandie Marie or one of my relatives). My parents had brought some of our presents up for us to open and the phone was one of them. I went over to my grandparents' PC and carefully selected my brand of individualism: "The Remedy" by Jason Mraz.

I'm not proud of that choice, but I'm not exactly ashamed. It definitely could have been worse.

Ringtones eventually progressed into ACTUAL CLIPS OF SONGS, which didn't really work that well because you couldn't tell if it was just music playing over the speakers of the restaurant you were at, or if your phone was ringing. We eventually tuned in to the frequencies of what it sounded like for crappy samsung speakers to be playing a 30 second clip of a pop song, so much so that we often thought we heard a phone ringing when in fact, it was just the music, or some high pitched white noise, or phantom ringing like that thing when your arm gets cut off but you can still feel it itch. I assume.

You would think the rise of smart phones would take that to the next level -- upgrading to FULL songs or like, holograms of your favorite musicians popping out of your purse and singing to you that you have an incoming call. But in light of all the other cool things smart phones can do, ringtones fell by the wayside. Who cares about updating your ringtone every six months so that yours is not painfully outdated when you can do things like the INTERNET?

I made the switch to a plain ringer before I had a smart phone, but that was because I was tired of having to pick out a ringtone. It was such a meaningful decision and I didn't care enough to put that much effort into it. (Making decisions is hard for me.)

I think another reason ringtones fell away is because people became less interested in making their phone scream their personality. I like to have a case on mine to somewhat reflect my style and differentiate it from others' phones, but with the iPhone, most people just accepted that all our phones would look the same and no one really cared because again, INTERNET. And NO BUTTONS.

Think about the last time you heard a cell phone ring. Was it anything other than that old-timey phone ring (android has this as well) or the calypso drums that come on the iPhone? Probably not. I hear the same ring as my phone on a daily basis.

So I'd like to take a moment to remember the ringtone and all it meant to my adolescence. Thank you, ringtone, for allowing me to declare to everyone who I thought I was without actually having to tell them. Thank you for allowing me to judge others within just 2-3 seconds of hearing their phone ring. Thank you for all the embarrassing and hilarious moments of cell phones blaring "She Thinks My Tractor's Sexy" in churches, weddings, and English classes around the country (but mostly the South).

You had a good run, and we will all miss you. Talk to us again when you figure out that whole hologram thing. Dibs on Beyonce.

What was your most memorable ringtone?

The Rise of the Introvert

If you don't know me in real life, allow me to make a confession to you: I am an introvert. I KNOW. A writer who is an introvert. Shocking. I'd say at this point in my life I'm only about 65-70 percent introverted (high fives for progress in people skills), but that's enough to count me on your side, fellow I's. I like people. I'm social. I just like hanging out in small groups and I'm still terrible at small talk. I'm the person that says "you too" to something like "thanks for coming to my show" and then gives an awkward side hug and bails (true story). But I digress.

The point of telling you all that is to share with you a discovery. It's been happening all around me (and you), and I for one could not be happier.

Introverts are taking over the Internet.

Okay, maybe not taking over. That would require too much confrontation.

But they are rising up on a glorious wave of Wordpress blogs and Twitter feeds all around the world (or at least the corner I tweet in).

You see, the Internet allows us to pretend that we're not shy. It tricks us into thinking we're good at interacting with people we don't know. (Want a reality check? Go to a blogger/writer conference and try to mingle with one another. We're adorable, aren't we?)

What it actually does is allow us to get out our thoughts coherently and then not have to wait for a book publisher to say "yes" before anyone can read it. It gives us an opportunity to have a platform without having to literally stand on a platform and speak at people.

Look at me, right now, speaking to people I don't know from behind a computer screen. Is there honestly anything more fantastic for someone who arrived at college realizing she didn't know how to make friends and instead just watched a lot of One Tree Hill in her dorm room? No. No, there is not.

Another interesting thing I've noticed is the rise of Introvert Pride.

Exhibit A: I saw this floating around on the internet a couple of months ago. I don't think this would have been perpetuated if it weren't for the internet. We would have just read it and stuck it on our bulletin board above our desk and no one else would have ever seen it ever because that's just not how we roll. But the Internet allows us to post this for all to see and say, "THIS, WORLD. HEAR ME ROAR (please)."


Exhibit B: I've seen a few different articles on how to relate to introverts, but this one got some significant traffic because it's Donald Miller, duh.

Exhibit C: Loved this article called "The Introverted Evangelist" on how introverts can still be useful without being like HEY GUYS LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT THIS GUY JESUS KAY?

One of the greatest things about the Internet is that it brings like-minded people together who wouldn't have met otherwise, namely: introverts who don't know how to meet people. And those introverts write articles for other introverts, and all the introverts rejoice.

Is anyone else thinking the word "introvert" sounds weird now?

How do you lean? Introvert, extrovert or a little of both?

Snoop Dogg (I mean...Lion) and Miley Sing About Drugs


Has Snoop Dogg lost our respect by now or are we still pretending that he's a legitimate artist? Anyone that changes their name more than once is immediately written off as self-indulgent in my book. I mean if you're changing your name once, that's a little presumptuous in and of itself, but eventually society will accept it and move on. Doing it again means you're assuming we 1) care enough about you to change it in our minds and vocabulary and 2) that we will just go along with whatever nonsense you spew out about what you want to be called. You don't get to choose what you're called. It chooses you. Or your parents choose it. Or you choose it before you get famous. But you don't get to change it after the fact. It's a rule of life.

Snoop Dogg has reached this point. First it was P.Diddy, now this. Even Charlie Sheen has decided to change his name...to his real name. Am I the only one who didn't know or care that Charlie Sheen was not his real name? Whatever, we're done with him anyway. "Winning" was funny for like five minutes but go away, Sheen. I mean, Estevez.

Anyway, all this is to say that Snoop Dogg has insisted on being called Snoop LION which somehow makes even less sense. I associate Snoop Dogg with Snoopy who is actually a dog so I guess it kind of works in my brain, but I will not accept Lion.

So he is now self-proclaimed Snoop Lion and apparently thinks he is Bob Marley reincarnate. Like, really. He does. I'm not just saying that because of the song I am about to share with you.

This particular song, "Ashtrays and Heartbreaks" (you read that right) is a new release from Snoop featuring Miley Cyrus.

You might be thinking, "What? No. WHAT? NO." Because that is exactly what my reaction was.

The combination of the name change and the colab with the troubled teen star and the name of the song is a shockingly terrible cocktail of ridiculousness.

It's like they were at an improv show and someone yelled out, "Snoop Dog! No, he's changed his name to snoop LION because he thinks it reflects his new identity as Bob Marley incarnate! Now add Miley Cyrus! Now sing about drugs! Go!"

But this is our life now, America. This is our Amanda-Bynes-Twitter-feed-saturated life.

Here is the video for the song:

The second-most annoying thing about this video is there is no straight-on shots of anyone. How am I supposed to properly assess and judge their appearances (looking at you, Miley) if I can't quite decipher what they are wearing?

But the gold-medal most annoying thing is that I ACTUALLY STARTED TO LIKE THIS SONG.

What is happening to me? What is happening to society?

I expected this song to be awful, and it wasn't half bad. I expected Miley's new single to be catchy (a la Party In The USA) and it was the worst thing I've ever listened to.

I give up.

Do you support the whole Snoop Lion thing? Or Miley Cyrus? Or Amanda Bynes, for that matter?

What do you rate this song on a scale of 1 to "Mirrors" by JT?

The State of Saturday Night Live [Podcast]


With Seth Meyers leaving to host Late Night, Fred Armisen and Bill Hader leaving and possibly even Jason Sudekis too, SNL is entering a new phase of life. Losing Kristen Wiig and Andy Samberg was hard, but now we are left with only Bobby Moynihan and the ever-present Kenan when it comes to long-time vets.

Is this a good thing or a bad thing? Are we ready for a new start or are we going to reel from their loss?

Though no one asked us, Knox, Mark and I took it upon ourselves to discuss it and provide our (non)expert opinions on the subject.

Check out the podcast here!

You can also subscribe to Xtra Bacon on iTunes to make sure you don't miss any of the upcoming shows from the network.

I'm on vacation this week with my family in Orlando, so I may not be talking at you the rest of the week (at least on my blog. We all know I can't quit tweeting.)

Follow my Twitter and Instagram for all kinds of entertainment like my entire family dancing to Men In Black and me being too excited about a Dr. Who shirt.

What's your favorite SNL skit from this season?