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.
I’m low on sleep but high on energy to bring you all this week’s finds. Here’s hoping I don’t crash before I finish…
- La Croix Cocktails: I previously mentioned my love for La Croix flavored sparkling water. Well, I’m hopelessly addicted now that I have an endless supply at work. Good thing a writer at Gizmodo curated nine cocktail recipes to make with La Croix! Happy hour just got a little happier.
- RunKeeper: With my newfound Run Club at work, I wanted to try this wildly popular app to map my route and pace. The welcome series of emails was a little aggressive, but I’m otherwise pleased with the experience so far. Bonus: It’s on sale for just $20/year — get it while you can!
- Firefly: I recently celebrated three months with my company by joining my referring co-worker and our mutual friend at this spot in Noe Valley. It’s largely veg-focused, but I can attest that the fried chicken and biscuit were also stellar. It was a nice departure from my usual menu, especially with the tart and vibrant fried green tomatoes. Yum!
- Jay Pharaoh: SNL’s king of impressions has done it again — this time, mimicking various rappers. Best of all, host and musical guest Drake had something to say about it. Despite the crap quality (thanks for hoarding your videos, SNL), you won’t be disappointed, fam.*
*Am I using that correctly? I’m too old and white to be cool.
I’m feeling much better after a week of illness and some reeeal ugly cries, you guys. It absolutely helps that my cousins are in town for the week to visit — allowing me just enough time for these faves:
- “The Fault in Our Stars”: ‘Twas was the perfect setting to see a movie by myself for the first time. This year’s best read was wonderful on-screen and I highly, highly, highly recommend it.
- HBO Go: A week bedridden was made sort-of OK with this service. 31 episodes of “Game of Thrones” later, and I was feeling almost human again!
- “Fancy” – Iggy Azalea f. Charli XCX: I can’t get enough of I-G-G-Y. One look at my Spotify, and you’ll see I’ve binge-listened approximately 500 times. The “Clueless” music video is just the gangsta cherry on top.
- “Part of Our World”: And I can’t listen to “Fancy” without thinking of this hilarious sketch from Anna Kendrick’s turn hosting SNL. She plays Ariel (“The Little Mermaid”) and teaches Ursula (Aidy Bryant) about today’s popular music.
I say it every month, but seriously — how are we already halfway through October? Cooler weather is in full effect, causing all of NYC to layer up and party down.
Halloween is just 15 days away, which means the early-celebators of Christmas are already being assholes. Can’t time just slow down for a little?
- James Wolk: I first loved this guy from his short stint on “Happy Endings” and really enjoyed him rocking shorty shorts on “Mad Men” this season. Now the hottie with a body is on “The Crazy Ones,” and I will buy whatever he is selling. Hands down.
- “I Am Malala”: This memoir from women’s rights and education activist (not to mention, medical miracle) Malala Yousufzai just arrived in my mailbox. It’s no wonder she was the youngest Nobel Prize nominee — check out her interview with Jon Stewart and feel terrible about how little you accomplished by 16.
- Catch: I had the pleasure of meeting my second cousin last week, and she introduced me to this phenomenal seafood restaurant in the Meatpacking District. We shared scallops, shrimp and a few other appetizers … each one more delicious than the last.
- “Roar” – Katy Perry: This song made a stir a few months back, due to its uncanny resemblance to Sara Bareilles’s single, “Brave.” Whatever your take, I prefer Perry’s music for once in my life. Grrrrowl.
It’s a rainy day here in Tampa, and the loom of gloom has put me in quite the mood. Lucky for you, I know just the trick to stave off the storm brewing in my spirit.
- “Skinny Love” by Birdy: This 14-year-old Brit’s soulful voice gives me chills, and I quite prefer her cover to Bon Iver’s original — the horror! —added to my playlist for a rainy day.
- Soup in a Bread Bowl: Yeah, I went there. Is there any better comfort food than a bread bowl of chicken noodle soup, with little baby bread bites for dunking?! I submit that there is not.
- “50 Shades of Grey”: A co-worker introduced me to the series, and I’m already halfway through the second book. Check out the SNL spoof (NSFW-ish) to pique your interest further.
- Snug Life: My Deluxe Snuggie — with pockets, sucka — is perfect to keep cozy and warm during such a disgusting day. I’m all about As Seen on TV products, and raising the roof is waaay cooler in a Snuggie.
Have I mentioned I’m leaving the country in three days? Color me anxious.
To mark the end of an absolutely insane week, I just had to celebrate a songstress whom I’ve recently found. And yes, one person counts as a band I love. Just go with it.
Ellie Goulding is a self-taught singer and guitarist from the U.K. Learning from fellow musicians, she copied their styles and voices to perfect the craft. After winning a talent competition at university (how British do I sound?), she gained the confidence to perform onstage regularly.
I first heard Goulding’s unique voice when she performed on an episode of “Saturday Night Live” earlier this year. Her remake of “Your Song” gave me chills. The single was featured in British marketing in late 2010, and it’s no surprise that it was an instant hit.
Some other releases of hers I adore:
Goulding is signed with Polydor Records and has been nominated for numerous awards during her short time on the music scene. She just appeared at Outside Lands in San Fran and is currently traveling the U.S. on The Lights Tour.
Her talent is undeniable … just as her beauty is. Hope you like!