I somehow survived Celine and Christina and my time in the desert but came back with a wicked cough and nonstop sneezes. Ain’t that how it always is? Enjoy a few days away, come back miserable.
In the absence of things I’m over-the-top excited about this week (no tastebuds will do that to you), here are a few things that have kept me smiling, in no particular order:
MILD SPOILERS AHEAD. So if you didn’t see last night’s GoT, just wait until Wednesday for your regularly scheduled WO.
OK so my roommate has only seen one episode of Game of Thrones (S8:E1). She watched it because she thought it was the finale. Precious child. She had no idea what she was getting herself into!
We watched last night’s episode, aptly named “The Long Night,” after hours of clearing out the old apartment with our former roommates.
While settled in a camping chair (me) and a pillow fort (her), here are some actual highlights of her watching and me explaining, and us both freaking out:
- He’s so hot
- Wait, I don’t get it
- I don’t want any of them to die! (said thrice in a row, plus more)
- Fuck! (lost count)
- I can’t watch! (lost count)
- This is scary!
- Who’s he?
- Why would she be executed?
- She killed a little girl?!
- Like I feel bad for these characters…
- It’s 90 minutes?!
- Isn’t he a eunuch?
- Is that the zombie dragon?
- There’s THREE episodes left?!
- What’s left to cover after this?
- Oh Cersei is going to die
- Cersei is so going to die
- Who’s she?
- No, not the little girl!
- Fire doesn’t do anything?
- What are they doing?
- Fuck they’re scary
- I’m scared
- YES ARYA
- NO DAENERYS
- He loves her (said multiple times in a row)
- Are they in love?
- Who’s that?
- Why’d she do that?
- Wow (lost count)
- Just wow (lost count)
Well, well, well. If it isn’t somehow already another Wednesday — the last in April, no less. If you’ve been here at all the last few weeks you know I’ve been drowning in the river of chaos. And while I’m not completely out of the woods yet (are we outta the woods?) I do see light at the end of the tunnel. How many nature metaphors can I use in one post?
- Canva: Yes, part of my job now is to research and test awesome apps. But I’ve been in love with Canva for quite a while and couldn’t believe I hadn’t mentioned it here yet. Beyond easy and fun templates for social media, you can also design your own invitations, presentations, flyers, and business cards. I still prefer to do so on the app, but the website is also pretty stellar.
- Giphy: Another great way to express yourself? With gifs. Yes, I switched to the proper “jif” pronunciation but then I judged myself so hard I switched back. If you use Slack or work in tech you’ve probably already discovered all of the magical /giphy combos to behold. It’s endlessly fun (and distracting), so please Giphy responsibly.
- GoT Final Season: Well it wouldn’t be right if I failed to cover arguably the biggest pop culture moment of the year. With just four episodes left, “Game of Thrones” is giving us all the feels and all the reasons to watch. every. second. I spiraled reading a few fan theories and am decidedly done — my heart can’t take anymore. #DanyForever
- “Jenny of Oldstones” – Florence + The Machine: SPOILERS SUPPOSEDLY.
So I haven’t spiraled into reading these theories, because I just love the song and don’t need to have it ruined. This original tune was in Sunday’s episode and sung by Daniel Portman (AKA Podrick Payne). His voice is beautiful! Then the end credits rolled and I was haunted by Florence + The Machine’s version. Seriously, chills. #NerdAlert
OK, people: I don’t know what it is with my immune system, but I’m (once again) fighting a head cold and idk, maybe I’m allergic to San Francisco?
It’s very possible, since I find myself sneezing and coughing more than ever here — and that’s counting rainy Florida seasons and winters in New York.
Maybe it’s age? Maybe it’s allergies? Maybe she’s born with it?
You can see my loopiness setting in already.
And since Pete + Ariana are over, Halloween is still A WEEK away and I already binged all of “Making a Murderer” Part 2, here’s a compilation you’ll have to use in place of my regularly entertaining, witty commentary:
Are you ready for a wild ride? Don’t say I didn’t warn you:
- “Girls’ Trip”: It’s no surprise to see a star-studded cast of Queen Latifah, Regina Hall, Jada Pinkett Smith and Tiffany Haddish straight-up slay the female buddy comedy genre. I finally watched this last weekend and laughed, cringed and guffawed the whole way through. I won’t be that girl (Kate Walsh’s character) but seriously, you must see it.
- “The Last Black Unicorn” – Tiffany Haddish: Inspired by Miss Haddish’s performance (and unforgettable SNL episode), I borrowed a copy of her bestselling memoir. Again, I laughed, I cringed, I was gobsmacked. She writes so honestly and from the heart, and you can’t help but read it in her signature style. Do yourself a favor and get a copy ASAP.
- “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” – Michelle McNamara: By now, you’ve likely heard about the infamous Golden State Killer and his capture, thanks to a national DNA database and unrelenting detectives. One such person was Michelle McNamara, who compiled decades of evidence and information to inspire others to theorize and piece clues together. Her book was published posthumously, just a few months before the killer was named. Seriously, this is one you won’t want to miss.
- “Making a Murderer” Returns: Hold onto your hats and get ready for the next season of this binge-worthy true crime series. The gripping, thrilling documentary sheds a harrowing light on the criminal justice system, its faults and failings. I’m setting my calendar now for the season to come back October 19.
I’m sure there are worse ways to start off your week than being unceremoniously dumped, but I’m struggling to think of any right now. Better sooner than later, I know. But woof. What a week it’s been — and it’s only Wednesday.
- “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes”: Caitlin Doughty’s memoir served as the backdrop for this month’s Book Club pick. It’s a dark, oddly humorous and fairly emotional look at the funeral industry and the way society acknowledges death (or doesn’t). I’m intrigued to hear what my fellow clubbers thought, but I gave it an enthusiastic four stars myself.
- Support BELWOP: One of the most selfless, giving people I know is planning a mission trip to Kenya with her church. You can read more about it on Lydia’s GoFundMe page, but I hope you’ll consider giving to a spirit so bright and selfless. Any donation counts toward helping her help others.
- Bran Flakes Visits: Another of my favorite humans on the planet is coming to visit tomorrow, and her timing couldn’t be more perfect. From working on the same creative team and exploring Panama and Costa Rica, plus volunteering on a leadership board and even designing this very WO template, Brandi and I have shared some of my most treasured experiences — and I’m sure there are more to come this weekend.
- “Let’s Generalize about Men” – “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”: There are some real gems out there when it comes to breakup songs, but this one is absolutely my favorite right now. If you’re not familiar with “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” songs, they’re often self-aware and a parody of ridiculous proportions. Disclaimer aside, I think anyone would enjoy this totally tubular jam.
The sun is shining, the birds are singing and I couldn’t be happier today. Confession: That’s all a lie but if I keep telling myself it’s true, then it’ll all be OK, right? Right.
- Reformer Pilates: I had my first-ever turn at reformer pilates last weekend, thanks to a new friend, who happens to be a super fit instructor. The machines helped me stretch beyond my wildest dreams, and I felt lengthened and strengthened — while also relaxed. I’ll definitely be returning for another class soon. Pro tip: Don’t try this the day after an abs boot camp 😉
- Sweetbitter: This novel kept popping up on Goodreads, but I bought it late last year without ever committing. The good news: It’s a very quick read, with lots of characters and a peek into the (fictional) NYC restaurant world. The bad: I didn’t find the main character particularly likeable, and all of the food talk made me so, so hungry! Check it out for yourself and let me know what you think.
- Aziz Ansari Hosts SNL: This may be premature praise, but Aziz Ansari will host this week’s SNL and I couldn’t be more excited. Modern Romance was one of the best books I’ve read in recent years, and I thoroughly enjoyed his Treat Yo’self bourgie boy Tom Haverford on “Parks & Recreation,” plus his brainchild on Netflix, “Master of None.” Don’t disappoint me, Aziz. Pleeease.
- “Starboy” – The Weeknd: It’s pretty rare that I like a song based on beat alone, without even bothering to hear or understand the lyrics. Well, The Weeknd has me hooked — despite my initial resistance after a fellow Halloween reveler insisted it be played on repeat. I’ve come around and now find myself bopping along mindlessly.
Unrelated, but I’ve recently made my personal Twitter account public, so I’ll be deleting the blog’s Twitter account. No sense managing two, right? Follow wittyburg before I delete wittyburgblog on Feb. 1!
2 posts in one day? I must really like you guys.
In all seriousness, I couldn’t possibly let my 279-week streak of obsessions die, despite this morning’s reflections and revelations.
Something I think we all could use right now, is a mental break. So, please enjoy these funny dog videos at your leisure.
I’ll be back at it next week with our regularly scheduled programming.
After five packed days back in NYC, it’s safe to say it’s a good thing I no longer live there. My skin, liver, wallet and waistline desperately needed a break from the city that never sleeps. Side note: I, too, apparently never sleep while there. Good thing I’ve got an SNL-laden tribute this week to keep spirits high in my disoriented state.
- Trump’s Halloween “Apprentice” Promo: OK, so this is obviously a throwback to when Darrell Hammond was the king of impersonating Donald Trump, and not Alec Baldwin. It’s kind of eerie to watch it back now, as Trump is now one of our candidates for President, and the impression is dead-on. I recall giggling endlessly at his attempt at an evil laugh, so I hope you’ll enjoy it, too.
- Ashlee Simpson’s Lip-sync Hoedown: In that very same episode, Ashlee Simpson gave us a dance to remember forever. She delivered hit single “Pieces of Me” just fine in the first performance, but in her second shot at the stage, that same song — with vocals — began playing. What would I do in that situation? God only knows. But her awkward jig is burned into our brains, so I hope I would have come up with something a little less memorable.
- Melaniade: Of particular relevance with the impending election was last week’s pre-filmed short, featuring the women in Donald Trump’s life taking him down (and taking him back) à la Beyoncé. If this doesn’t make you laugh, I don’t know what will. It also might make you cringe, but hey, that’s kind of what SNL does best.
- Bruno Mars Is “24K Magic”: I was disappointed to see Emily Blunt hosting last week — not because she married John Krasinski and I loathe her for it — but because I’ve always enjoyed Bruno Mars as a host/musical guest, and he was just singing this time. The thing is, though, he’s never just singing. He’s a performer through and through, and his dynamic dancers put on quite the show.
Hurricane Matthew seems to have its sights set on the east coast of Florida. As my family and friends batten down the hatches, I’m using these distractions to weather the storm updates. Stay safe out there — lifelong Floridians are great at ignoring dramatic predictions, but this one looks like it could actually be a doozy.
- Lisa Frank on FB: What better return to childhood nostalgia than your favorite rainbow and animal enthusiast sharing Facebook updates? From recipes to products to memes and more, the posts always bring a smile to my face. Absolutely fabulous!
- Grape Stomping: One of my work teams had our quarterly outing yesterday, this time with grape stomping at Grgich Hills Estate. We tasted wines elsewhere, too, but this was easily the highlight of the day. Stomping away in barrels (while accidentally dressed as twins) was the perfect activity for a team-building Tuesday.
- “The Help”: I recently found this bestseller in a thrift store for just $1, so I promptly brought it home to enjoy. It took about four nights of voracious reading — it’s that well-written — to devour this story of black maids in 1960s Mississippi. Bonus: Comcast had the movie showing for free, so I indulged in that after the final chapter. If you haven’t read it, I strongly recommend… especially with today’s racial landscape. It’s eerily scary to the
- SNL Is Back: With its biggest premiere audience in eight years, it’s clear America loves Donald Trump. Or at least, loves Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump. The highly anticipated debate parody was just the beginning and — although I feel like real life is sadly funnier — I’m excited to see what else they’ll come up with the circus, I mean, election.