Another Suitcase in Another Hall

I have had many long days recently…twice last week I didn’t leave work until after 9:00pm, and overall, I was pretty beat. Unfortunately, these days weren’t great days on the job, either – some situations were really frustrating me, and many of the adults around me were behaving badly, so….it wasn’t my very finest week. After I drove home one night last week, crawled into bed to watch my daily two episodes of “Seinfeld” (you should try it, it’s good for the soul), I stopped to think back on all of the events that had transpired, how frustrated I felt, when a question dropped from the heavens and landed in my lap:

Where do I go from here?

The answer was to sleep, because I was draggin’ arse like you would not believe…but the question replayed in my head while I slept. Thankfully, I didn’t get up and write about it like I did a couple of weeks ago (I’m Slim Shady, remember?), but I certainly thought about it a fair bit while I attempted to rest. The reason I was so bothered was because I didn’t enjoy most of last week, and I did not want to have a repeat of it – so where was I going to go, and what was I going to do to make sure that I did not have my own version of “Groundhog Day”? It reminds me of this song from “Evita”:

So what happens now?

Isn’t it great? As an aside, I totally think Madonna was shafted and should have received way more accolades for playing Eva Peron than she did – she was SO good in that movie. Anyway, back to me and my whining – where do I go from here? How do I ensure that I don’t keep making the same mistakes and react the wrong way day after day, repeating this cycle of negativity? How do I break a habit?

image

According to what the experts say about habit breaking, you have to make a seriously conscious effort to change your behavior (no half-assing allowed), you need to put it in writing/share it with those who can support you, and you need to exercise the bait and switch technique (swap out something negative and replace it for something positive); it’ll also help to get rid of as many triggers as you can, surround yourself with people who are doing the things that you want to do and living the life that you want to live, overcome your negative self-talk, and give yourself a break when you slip up. All great strategies that could help you quit smoking or chewing your nails, but….what about larger life changes? Can these strategies work? How do you break the habit of getting sucked into the  negativity that seems to be everywhere these days? Let’s read this article together:

Have you ever met Debbie Downer, Negative Nancy or Pessimistic Patty? These people can be so entrenched in the bad things that there isn’t any room for good things to grow. They inhabit our families and social circles. It can be emotionally draining just being around them, and you must be careful because their attitudes are contagious. Negativity perpetuates itself, breeds dissatisfaction and clutters the mind. And when the mind is cluttered with negativity, happiness is much harder to come by.

Here are 10 ways to defend yourself against negativity:

Don’t take other people’s negativity personally. Most negative people behave negatively not just to you, but to everyone they interact with. What they say and do is a projection of their own reality – their own attitude. Even when a situation seems personal – even if someone insults you directly – it oftentimes has nothing to do with you. Remember, what others say and do, and the opinions they have, are based entirely on their own self-reflection.
Spend more time with positive people. You are the average of the people you spend the most time with. In other words, who you spend your time with has a great impact on the person you eventually become. If you are around cynical and negative people all the time, you will become cynical and negative. Does who you are and who you want to be reflect in the company you keep? Start spending time with nice people who are smart, driven and likeminded. Relationships should help you, not hurt you. Surround yourself with people who reflect the person you want to be. Choose friends who you are proud to know, people you admire, who love and respect you, people who make your day a little brighter simply by being in it.
Be the positivity you want to see in the world. Lead by example. You can’t always save the world, but you can make the world a better place by practicing what you preach – by becoming self-aware, tapping into your compassion, and protecting your positive space. Doing simple things like talking about positive daily events, common friends, hobbies, happy news, make for light conversations with negative people. Keep the conversations focused on optimistic areas the person can relate to. You can disarm their negativity, even if it’s just for a little while.
Change the way you think. The one thing nobody can take away from you is the way you choose to respond to what others say and do. The problem isn’t the events that are negative. The problem is the way you react to those events. The last of your freedoms is to choose your attitude in any given circumstance. Complaining, blaming and criticizing aren’t going to change the situation. It is not always easy to find happiness in ourselves, but it is always impossible to find it elsewhere. Regardless of the situation you face, your attitude is your choice. Remember, you can’t have a positive life with a negative attitude. When negativity controls your thoughts, it limits your behavior, actions, and opportunities. If you realized how powerful your thoughts were, you would never think another negative thought again.
Focus on solutions. Negative people have an endless supply of pity party invitations. Don’t RSVP. Oftentimes people use negativity as a barrier to protect themselves from the world, which in turn blocks them from solutions that could improve their life. Instead, identify solutions. Don’t dwell too much on what went wrong. Instead, focus on the next positive step. Spend your energy on moving forward toward a positive resolution. Remember, when you focus on solutions, by thinking and acting positively, sound becomes music, movement becomes dance, a smile becomes laughter, and life becomes a celebration.

image
Love whoever is around to be loved. Practice acts of kindness. It’s a lot harder to be negative when you’re in the presence of love and kindness. Be that presence whenever possible. Let your guard down. Talk to someone you don’t know straight from your heart. Compliment them. Don’t anticipate awkwardness. Just be you in that beautiful way only you know, and give them the chance to smile and connect with you. Sometimes a kind word and some attention from a friend is all that’s needed to turn a negative attitude around.
Provide support when it makes sense. Some people complain as a way of crying for help. They may not be conscious of it though, so their comments come across as negative complaints rather than requests. Show some concern. Just a simple “Are you okay?” or “Is there anything I can do to help you?” can do wonders. Resist the urge to judge or assume. It’s hard to offer compassion when you assume you have them figured out. Let them know they are not alone. People overcome the forces of negative emotions, like anger and hatred, when the counter-forces of love and support are in full effect.
Realize that life is a series of ups and downs. Acknowledge the negativity, accept it, and let it pass through your consciousness, thereby teaching you a lesson but not ruining your day. Life is full of highs and lows, but you don’t have to go up and down with them. We develop from the negatives when we accept them and learn from them. This cycle is all part of the human experience. Relax, let go a little, and enjoy the ride.
Concentrate on today. Too often, we carry around things from our past that hurt us – regrets, shame, anger, pain, etc. Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. Don’t let these negative points from the past rob your present happiness. You had to live though these things in the past, and although unfortunate, they can’t be changed. But if the only place they live today is in your mind, then let go, move on, and be happy. You can decide right now that negative experiences from your past will not predict your future.
Let go and move on when you must. If all else fails, remove yourself from the wrong situations and relationships. Some people are like dark clouds; when they disappear, it’s a brighter day. Know when it’s time to let go. Letting go of negative people doesn’t mean you hate them, it just means that you care about your own wellbeing. Every time you subtract negative from your life, you make room for more positive.
It isn’t easy to remain positive when negativity surrounds you, but remember that you have full control of your attitude. Think of it this way: An entire body of water the size of the Pacific Ocean can’t sink a ship unless it gets inside the ship. Similarly, all the negativity in the world can’t bring you down unless you allow it to get inside your head. People who are able to discern the positive points in negative situations are the ones who prosper in the long run. So defend yourself against the ‘negative way’ and make room for a positive day.

image

Not bad, eh? All very common sense, but, as you and I already know….common sense? Not so common. I really like the last one – remember that you have full control of your attitude. This is something that I have really been working on lately, and I am hopeful that it will start to help. I’ve had a whole bunch of things going on lately that have caused me stress – you’d never know it, though, as I don’t say a whole lot about it, and the people around me certainly never stop talking about themselves long enough to ask. (SIDEBAR: When did that start happening? And who the hell decided that this kind of behavior was going to be socially okay? I will go through entire days of my life where not one person ever asks the simplest of questions: “How are you?” – even when I ask them first. I just don’t get it. Example – this weekend, I texted someone that I thought I was pretty close to and asked “How’s your weekend been?” The response I got was overwhelmingly negative, bitching about everything that is wrong with life and the stupid people that lurk everywhere, the upcoming holidays and what a pain in the arse they are, etc etc etc. There was nothing positive in the message exchange, nothing but misery and griping – and not one single “How are you doing? Are things going okay for you?”. Nothing. It was one of the most meaningless conversations I’ve ever had – yet, when I think about it, it spoke volumes about what this person really thinks of me,….and I’m done.)

I think that’s getting to be the theme with me these days – I am done. I’m really sick of a whole bunch of things – people, situations, everything…I just feel done. I’m finding myself drawn to spending more and more time doing only the things that I enjoy – and not going through the motions with the rest of it. I’ve quit calling some people on the phone – those devices ring both ways, and I’m waiting a bunch of people out, waiting for them to initiate phone calls with me. It appears that I may be waiting for a very long time, but…that’s fine, I’m highly stubborn and have tremendous willpower when it comes to being spiteful. If only that willpower transferred to food. Oh well.

I’ve got many, MANY bad habits – and I need to break some of them. I’m not getting any younger, and life is way too short to keep repeating some of these stupid, crappy days over and over again… I need to replace the shitty things that happen with great stuff. I’m tired of the same suitcases in my halls. It’s time for some new luggage.

 

xxx

 

Ghost Town

Madonna released the video for her latest single ‘Ghost Town’ this week, and it’s pretty bloody stunning. Here’s a link for you to check it out….it’s beautiful. :-) ** Click on the image to see the video**

image

 

Should you fancy a sing-along, here are the lyrics:

Maybe it was all too much
Too much for a man to take
Everything’s bound to break
Sooner or later, sooner or later

You’re all that I can trust
Facing the darkest days
Everyone ran away
We’re gonna stay here, we’re gonna stay here  

Ah, ah
I know you’re scared tonight
Ah, ah
I’ll never leave your side

When it all falls, when it all falls down
I’ll be your fire when the lights go out
When there’s no one, no one else around
We’ll be two souls in a ghosttown

When the world gets cold, I’ll be your cover
Let’s just hold onto each other
When it all falls, when it all falls down
We’ll be two souls in a ghosttown

Tell me how we got this far
Every man for himself
Everything’s gone to hell
We gotta stay strong, we’re gonna hold on

This world has turned to dust
All we’ve got left is love
Might as well start with us
Singing a new song, something to build on

Ah, ah
I know you’re scared tonight
Ah, ah
I’ll never leave your side

When it all falls, when it all falls down
I’ll be your fire when the lights go out
When there’s no one, no one else around
We’ll be two souls in a ghosttown

When the world gets cold, I’ll be your cover
Let’s just hold onto each other
When it all falls, when it all falls down
We’ll be two souls in a ghosttown

I know we’re alright
‘Cause we’ll never be alone in this mad mad, in this mad mad world
Even with no light
We’re gonna shine like gold in this mad mad, in this mad mad world

When it all falls, when it all falls down
I’ll be your fire when the lights go out
When there’s no one, no one else around
We’ll be two souls in a ghosttown

When it all falls, when it all falls down
I’ll be your fire when the lights go out
When there’s no one, no one else around
We’ll be two souls in a ghosttown

When the world gets cold, I’ll be your cover
Let’s just hold onto each other
When it all falls, when it all falls down
We’ll be two souls in a ghosttown
When it all falls, when it all falls down
We’ll be two souls in a ghosttown


This song is just gorgeous…and a beautiful sentiment as well. It’s kind of the musical equivalent of relationship goals, eh? Think about it – when things go bad, I will be your fire when the lights go out; when it’s cold out I will be your cover, let’s just hold on to each other…when there is nobody else around, we will be two souls together. I LOVE it. :-) It’s amazing. :-)

I was asked recently what I thought relationships should be – my answer was not words (for a change), but this image:

image

 

This is really it, isn’t it? Someone who wants your company, thinks you’re the best, and wants to shag only you. Sounds pretty straightforward – and great – to me. :-) I was listening to an acquaintance describe a man that we know in common, and he described him in the most elegant and tragic way – he said that he was a “seeker of lost souls”. I can’t stop thinking about that sentence….because I think that is me. I have always been drawn to strays (animals and humans), those that are down on their luck, those that are unavailable, those that are inappopriate choices….the whole nine yards. It seems like I purposely and deliberately go out of my way to choose the most difficult options in life, and make things hard on myself. I suppose that part of it is that I have always believed greatly in the power of the underdog, because I have felt like an underdog myself. I have always wanted to teach in the prison system, because I believe with every ounce of my being that when we know better we do better, and education has the power to transform lives – and I wanted in on that. Sadly, that opportunity hasn’t come my way yet, but hopefully it will some day. I think I could do some good things. :-) That wide-eyed optimism is the same way that I approach my interactions with other people…and, while this attitude has got me in trouble far more times than I’d care to admit (there are too damn many cruel people out there, my friends), it’s the only attitude that I have. Thinking the best in people, regardless of how lost their soul may be, is all I’ve got. My soul is probably lost as well, you know…and I’m just looking for someone to seek me. :-)

 

xxx

Amazing Grace

Did you watch the Grammy awards on Sunday night? It was good, full of performances and interesting attire…exactly what I’m looking for in a music awards show. One of the night’s highlights was the loooooovely Ed Sheeran melting my heart with his performance of “Thinking Out Loud” (one of my favorite songs of all time, no lie), backed by the very handsome John Meyer on a hot pink guitar. Sigh. That was a lot of awesome on that stage at one time. Fantastic! :-) I loved watching my one true love Paul McCartney clapping and dancing along to the music, the divine Sam Smith duetting with Mary J. Blige (holy hell that’s a lot of talent happening there)….there were some really great moments. And then there was this:

image

There’s no denying that her body is in tremendous shape, especially for her age. However, there’s something so hard and sinewy about her, don’t you think? Yikes! She doesn’t look like a 56 year old woman – at least not like any 56 year old that I’ve ever seen. As well, whatever she’s done to her face has changed her appearance so much…it just doesn’t look natural. (Ladies – let this be a lesson to you: if a woman like Madonna with all the money and resources possible at her disposal can’t get work done on her face that looks natural, what hope do you have?? Stop messing with your faces!!!) I miss how Madonna used to look…during the Evita years, I thought she was the most stunning woman ever. Her performance on Sunday night didn’t really do it for me, either – which is completely shocking, as I have loved Madonna for 30+ years!! Her music now doesn’t seem to fit for me, either…I’m not sure why. It feels desperate, and like she’s trying way too hard…and she doesn’t need to. She’s Madonna. Needless to say, the entire situation left me wanting a more mature performer, one who has grown and aged as she should have….and thankfully that arrived, in the form of the looooovely Annie Lennox!! She came out to join Hozier on “Take Me To Church“, a song that I love a whole bunch – Annie was bloody radiant, she looked deliriously happy, natural, and LIKE HER SELF. She sounded fantastic, she was appropriately dressed (meaning I didn’t have to see her arse hanging out) – it was such a stark contrast to the image Madonna had painted earlier, of a woman raging and fighting against growing older. There was Annie, laugh lines and wrinkles telling the story of a life well-lived. It was fantastic – and did the heart some good. There’s no shame in getting older, and I’m really bloody tired of the society today that makes it sound like there is. It’s been nearly a year since the Wee One and I went to Paris, and hardly a day goes by that I don’t remember the women that I saw there and the beautiful, natural way that they looked…and I long for it. I don’t spend a whole lot of time fussing with my appearance – it is what it is, and I have come to accept that.  However, I wish that I could head out into the world some days without makeup on…but I don’t dare. I always run in to people that I know, and I can’t  risk frightening them like that! I wish that I lived in a place and time where it was okay to show the grey that exists in the litttle hairs around your temple, the crow’s feet around your eyes, and the shadows that sometimes show up when you haven’t had quite enough sleep.

 

Maybe someday. :-)

 

xxx

 

 

One More Night…

…until the MTV Video Music Awards! Love ’em or loathe ’em, there’s always something to talk about at the VMAs – and we’ve been discussing them now for (if I’m counting correctly, which I believe I am) 29 years! Rock on, Moon Man! :)

This year’s show promises to be as full of excitement as it has been in previous years – scheduled performers include: Rihanna, Lil Wayne, Nicki Minaj, Frank Ocean, Taylor Swift, Green Day, P!nk, Alicia Keys and One Direction…and a slew of famous presenters.

The VMAs have always had some memorable moments – in no particular order, here are some of my absolute favorites and things that had the tongues wagging:

1) Lady Gaga – The bloody Paparazzi (2009)

2) Madonna/Britney Spears/Christina Aguilera – The phoniest kisses of all time (2003)

3) Kanye West and Taylor Swift – The Stupidest Thing EVER (2009)

4) Madonna – Like A Virgin (1984)

5) Madonna – Vogue (1990)

6) Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley – The kiss (okay, okay…maybe Madonna/Britney/Christina were the SECOND phoniest kiss of all time!) (1994)

7) Martha Stewart and Busta Rhymes – CoPresenters (1997)

8) L’il Kim and Diana Ross – Juggling (1999)

9) Eminem – One of the most epic performances of ALL time (2000)

10) Britney Spears – Snake Charmer (2001)

11) Green Day – Kicks ass and takes names (2005)

12) Beyonce – Put A Ring On It (and put some shoes on yo’feet, sistah!) (2009)

13) Pink – Sober…and on a trapeze! (2009) ** So awesome I can hardly stand myself!**

14) Lady Gaga – and the Meat Dress! :) (2010)

15) Bruno Mars – Lovely tribute to Amy Winehouse with Valerie (2011)

Interesting sidebar to this VMA story – in 1990, I was in California for the month of August for my cousin’s wedding (she got married on September 9, 1990 – I was a bridesmaid), and a few of us went and got in line at Universal Studies the day of the VMAs to try to get tickets. While we were waiting in the never-ending line, we ended up beside the trailers of a few big names, including Sinead O’Connor, U2, and 2 Live Crew…Sinead came out of her trailer a few different times while we were waiting (I was there for ages), and while we saw Madonna’s trailer, the Madge-ster did not make an appearance. Boo! Hiss! As we neared the front of the line, the worst thing imaginable happened – the last tickets went to the person in front of me. No kidding. I was absolutely gutted – and so, me being me, I tried to make that dude a deal and started attempting to barter with him for those tickets. Needless to say, I wasn’t successful (I was 16 years old and didn’t have much of value to offer), so instead we finished our day at Universal Studios and went back to my cousin’s new in-laws place to watch the show. This was the year of the famous Madonna “Vogue” performance…and I was ALMOST there. Sad. Face. :(

Do you have a dream list of concerts that you want to see during your lifetime? I sure do. For the longest time, my list included Madonna, but…I think that ship has sadly sailed. Her hijinks and tomfoolery on this latest tour have left me with such a bad taste in my mouth – it’s too bad, as she was ALWAYS one of my favorites. Oh well…I think I’ll just go back and watch some of her old concert footage and call it a day. Some of the others that are still on my list include: the Red Hot Chili Peppers, U2, Lady Gaga (I can’t even imagine how fabulous that show would be – and, goodness…what would I wear??! 😉 ), Bruce Springsteen, Pink, and Coldplay…there’s more. :) I have seen so many great artists over the years, and I absolutely LOVE live music!!  (I really do need to sit down and write a post about my favorite concerts of all time, and my mom’s interesting connection with some of those shows – I’ll do that this week, they make some pretty great stories!)  :)

Are you planning to watch the VMAs tomorrow night? How do you watch – at home alone, with friends, or out somewhere? I’ll be watching at home alone in San Antonio, cocktail in hand, and wearing some fabulous shoes…because a girl must always look her best! 😉

xxx

Deeper and Deeper

I have always been a big fan of Madonna’s music, and would have given my left foot (or a couple of toes, anyway) to see her in concert. I’ve had every album, watched every concert DVD – and I was even a big fan of her performance in “Evita” (her best work to date, I believe). I was even alright with the more controversial decisions she made in her personal life during the late ’80s and ’90s (although that shit Brit accent she acquired when she lived in London was ridiculous…I certainly hope I didn’t start talking like that when I lived over there!!!). However, since her divorce from Guy Ritchie, something has seemed off with the Madge-ster, don’t you think? First, she has been dating toddlers, which is awkward since they are closer to her daughter’s age than hers. Now, let me make this clear – age aint nothin’ but a number, I get that; I’ve certainly dated my share of older men, but…I just think that a woman like Madonna ought to be able to find someone a little bit closer to her age. What could she and these infant boy toys possibly have to talk about? She’s 53 years old – she really ought to know better. Her current boyfriend is 24 year old French dancer Brahim Zaibat – prior to that, she was linked to Brazilian model Jesus Luz (who was also 24 at the time) — her daughter Lourdes is 15, by the way.

madonna-brahim-zaibat-hold-hands-leaving-turkey.jpg

Now, far more disturbing to me than the boy toy fascination she has been rocking lately is this crap that she’s been pulling on her MDNA tour. In June, she flashed her nipple during her show in Istanbul – yes, Madonna’s body is absolutely SICK it looks so amazing, but…come on!!  Do I need to remind you that she is 53 years old!!!  Chris Rock did a stand up bit a few years ago about Janet Jackson and her nipple slip during the Super Bowl halftime show – he discussed the difference between 40 year old titties (like Janet’s) that ought to be kept at home for your man only, and 20 year old titties (community titties!) that can come out for all to see. Here’s that video – if you have a couple of minutes (and aren’t easily offended!), it’s hilarious: Chris Rock on Janet Jackson . We’ve all seen pretty much every square inch of Madonna’s body anyway…isn’t this kind of like some sort of sad do-over? As well, she has upset many people by showing a video during her concert that features a prominent French politician with images of a swastika over her face (she even showed the video during her concert in Paris) – regardless of what your feelings are about people and their politics, getting swastikas involved is in incredibly poor taste. I think that is an image that you just don’t go to – ever. Madonna has also been fanning the flames of her feud with Lady Gaga (although, since Gaga is refusing to take the bait and get involved in Madonna’s infantile pissing contest, is it really even a feud at all?), calling her work reductive and influenced by Madonna’s early work. Gaga herself is ALWAYS holding her hand up high as being a MAJOR Madonna fan – and isn’t imitation the highest form of flattery? Yes, “Born This Way” sounds a lot like “Express Yourself” – but, if you ask me…it’s even better. :)

Madonna Guns

This weekend, the MDNA tour ended up in Scotland, and Madonna did another incredibly stupid thing: despite being warned by police and authorities, she waved fake machine guns and pistols around on stage during her show in Edinburgh on Saturday night. Her actions were seen by many as highly insensitive because this performance happened less than 48 hours after the tragedy in Aurora, Colorado. As well, Scotland has specific gun laws that were put in place following the Dunblane massacre of 1996 (where 16 children and 1 adult were killed following a gunman invading a primary school) that prohibit the kind of behavior that Madonna exhibited. Her people have said that she would rather cancel her show than censor her art, but…come on, that’s a load of shit. It’s not censoring your art to have a show or two that doesn’t include images of gratuitous violence with fake guns waving around on a stage – I’m terribly disappointed by her lack of sensitivity. It seems to me that she is on a mad quest to remain as relevant as possible, and since she isn’t having a ton of success with doing that with her music, she is resorting to sensationalistic acts to generate buzz and conversation. It’s sad – I miss the Madonna of old, the one who made quality music and put on exhilarating live performances (and had a face that didn’t look weird and cat-like – her facelift/plastic surgery looks just awful)…I’d far rather her than this new Madonna, who is attempting to be controversial simply for the sake of being controversial. It’s too bad.

xxx

High Fidelity

I miss the days when we used to make mixtapes for each other. Remember that? You’d make them for your friends, your sweethearts, whoever…and so bloody much thought went into the mix of songs, the transitions, the order…it was probably easier to plan the first Gulf War invasion. We all believed that the songs we chose would be able to speak more than our words ever could. I remember that mixtapes were a way of telling someone that you fancied how you felt…and I also remember that awkward moment when someone you weren’t that in to gave you a tape full of Glen Medeiros “Nothing’s Gonna Change My Love For You” and Stevie B’s “Because I Love You” and you had to pretend to dig it so you wouldn’t hurt their feelings. I went so far as to make myself mixtapes that I’d listen to according to mood – I named them my Happy/Sappy Tapes (I was 15 and had yet to hit my stride on witty names). I recently came across one of these little nuggets of entertainment, and laughed my fool head off at the playlist. Are you ready for this?  Here we go:

SIDE A: HAPPY

Invincible – Pat Benetar

Me So Horny – 2 Live Crew (don’t judge me)

Wild Thing – Tone Loc

My Prerogative – Bobby Brown

She Drives Me Crazy – Fine Young Cannibals

Express Yourself – Madonna

Love Shack – The B52s

Hangin’ Tough – New Kids on the Block

Armageddon It – Def Leppard

The Right Stuff – New Kids on the Block

SIDE B: SAPPY

I Will Always Love You – Dolly Parton

My Dream Come True – Frozen Ghost

You’ve Got It All Over Him – The Jets

Seasons Change – Expose

Try – Blue Rodeo

Smoke – Crash Vegas

Right Here Waiting – Richard Marx

Second Chance – .38 Special

How Can I Fall – Breathe

Lost In Your Eyes – Debbie Gibson

Is that playlist classic or what??! Fact is that I can still sing most of those songs word for word today, and I still love them. That’s the beauty of the mixtape – it perfectly captures you at a moment in time, and just a few notes from one of those familiar tunes can instantly transport you back to a time and place where maybe life was a wee bit simpler. I love that. :)

I want to start making mixtapes again – unfortunately, I don’t have a cassette player anymore, so I’m not going to be able to go totally old school. However, I love the idea of putting together a mix of songs to share with someone, to see if the music will mean something to them as it did for me. I made a mixCD (which doesn’t sound nearly as cool as mixtape…just FYI) for a friend a year and a half ago – here’s the track list:

You Know I’m No Good – Amy Winehouse Feat. Ghostface Killah

Back to Black – Amy Winehouse

Girl All The Bad Guys Want – Bowling for Soup

Glory Days – Bruce Springsteen

Pack Up – Eliza Doolittle

Cherry Lips – Garbage

Feels Good, Inc. – Gorillaz

Heavy Cross – Gossip

Don’t You Wanna Stay – Jason Aldean (with Kelly Clarkson)

Teenage Dream – Katy Perry

Mr. Brightside – The Killers

When You Were Young – The Killers

Use Somebody – Kings Of Leon

Misery – Maroon 5

The Way You Look Tonight – Maroon 5

One – Mary J. Blige/U2

Some Kind of Wonderful – Michael Bublé

We Are Golden – MIKA

Only Prettier – Miranda Lambert

Little By Little – Oasis

Raise Your Glass – P!nk

F**kin’ Perfect – P!nk

Californication – Red Hot Chili Peppers

Angels – Robbie Williams

Maggie May – Rod Stewart

Santeria – Sublime

Hey Jealousy – Gin Blossoms

Don’t Look Back In Anger – Oasis

You Give Me Something – James Morrison

This group of songs (random, I know) are things that I was listening to at the moment, songs that meant something to me, songs that made me shake my arse and go on with my bad self…and I was hoping that they’d be a hit to other listeners as well. Whether it was the glorious idea of being loved for who you are that Katy Perry presented in Teenage Dream, or the fact that the beginning of Don’t Look Back in Anger sounds like John Lennon’s Imagine….all of these songs were chosen because they meant something to ME.  I think they were pretty well-received  – I didn’t hear otherwise, so I’m going to assume that my mixCD, while perhaps not a total hit, was at least passable listening. :) I want someone to make a mixCD for me, to share music with me that matters to them, to say something to me through the use of music and not words…any takers??!

:)

xxx

You Must Love Me

I LOVE the movie version of the musical Evita (the one with Madonna) – it is such a beautiful film, and I truly believe that Madonna has never looked or sounded better. That movie is pure magic – I have listened to the soundtrack to death, and I still marvel at it every time I hear it….it’s breathtaking. :) I have had the song “You Must Love Me” on my mind recently…it has been playing in a loop, over and over again, haunting me. I’m sure this speaks in a larger way to my mental state, but…I digress. Anyway – I wanted to share the video with you:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a-wfhZepvWQ]

 

Where do we go from here?
This isn’t where we intended to be.
We had it all 
You believed in me
I believed in you

Certainties disappear
What do we do for our dream to survive
How do we keep all our passions alive
As we used to do?

Deep in my heart I’m concealing
Things that I’m longing to say
Scared to confess what I’m feeling
Frightened you’ll slip away
You must love me
You must love me

Why are you at my side?
How can I be any use to now?
Give me a chance and I’ll let you see how
Nothing has changed.

Deep in my heart I’m concealing
Things that I’m longing to say
Scared to confess what I’m feeling
Frightened you’ll slip away
You must love me (repeat three times)

Doesn’t that just kill you? “Scared to confess what I’m feeling / Frightened you’ll slip away / You must love me”. Sigh.

Love you, friends :)

xxx

The Child Inside

I follow Kelly Oxford on Twitter (@kellyoxford – if you’re interested…she’s great) – she’s a Canadian (ergo she’s awesome), a blogger, a mother, and a seriously funny chick. Her blog is called ‘eject‘ – check it out sometime, she’s really good. Anyway – today she posted a link to one of the best things I’ve seen in AGES – it’s a video of a guy named Robert Jeffrey (who, according to his Vimeo profile, is “A twenty-nine year old screenwriter with a defining passion for MADONNA, DARIO ARGENTO, MARILYN CHAMBERS, & BETTE DAVIS!” ) from when he was 9 years old, dancing to the Madonna song ‘Vogue’. The video is awesomely cheesy, and the sheer joy and fabulousness in his dancing is enough to warm even the coldest of hearts. Give it a watch – and just try wiping that grin off your face when you’re finished…he’s FANTASTIC!! :)  I wish he was my friend – I love fabulous people like him! :)

 

xxx
PS: I’m so in love with his outfit it’s not even funny….go on with your bad self, Mr. Jeffrey!!!!! :)

2011 Metropolitan Museum Costume Institute Gala

Last night was the annual Met Gala event, and the fashions this year DID NOT disappoint!  The event was celebrating the late, great Alexander McQueen, and many of the evening’s best dressed wore classic McQueen. Check out some of the pictures (from People):

JENNIFER LOPEZ photo | Jennifer Lopez  Jennifer Lopez in Gucci – a beautiful, dramatic look, don’t you think?

SARAH JESSICA PARKER photo | Sarah Jessica Parker Sarah Jessica Parker in McQueen – very pretty :)

BEYONCÉ photo | Beyonce Knowles Beyonce in Emilio Pucci – I don’t really care for this dress much at all, and sadly I think she looks like sausage busting out of its casing…it doesn’t do a thing for her figure. :(

ASHLEY GREENE photo | Ashley Greene Ashley Greene in Donna Karan – stunning :)

BLAKE LIVELY photo | Blake Lively Blake Lively in Chanel – some people didn”t care for this dress, but I think it’s realllllly pretty :)

TAYLOR SWIFT photo | Taylor Swift Taylor Swift’s J. Mendel frock was also panned by some of the critics, but I think she looks BEAUTIFUL! :)

MIRANDA KERR & ORLANDO BLOOM photo | Miranda Kerr, Orlando Bloom Miranda Kerr and husband Orlando Bloom – I’m not digging her Marchesa dress at all, which is surprising as I usually LOVE Marchesa, but…this one isn’t doing much for me.

KRISTEN STEWART photo | Kristen Stewart Kristen Stewart in Proenza Schouler – certainly eye-catching, eh?  What do you think?

GWYNETH PALTROW photo | Gwyneth Paltrow Gwyneth Paltrow in Stella McCartney – she looks AMAZING, but…isn’t this a look we’ve seen from her a zillion times?  Although, I guess there is something to be said for the theory ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’.

JENNIFER HUDSON photo | Jennifer Hudson Jennifer Hudson in Vera Wang – very pretty :)

RIHANNA photo | Rihanna Rihanna in Stella McCartney… I just don’t know. I’m not digging it. What do you think?

GISELE BÜNDCHEN & TOM BRADY photo | Gisele Bundchen, Tom Brady This picture is STUNNING – Gisele is flawless in archive McQueen, and the arm candy she’s rocking ain’t half bad, either. Look at her…can you imagine waking up to that sight in the mirror every day?  Sadly, neither can I.

MADONNA photo | Madonna For whatever reason, Madonna’s fashion choices of late have been annoying me – however, she did a lot to fix that last night. This Stella McCartney is very flattering on her, and is age-appropriate, as well (meaning she’s not trying to look 18 again, as she’s been guilty of lately) – the color is beautiful. :)

DEMI MOORE photo | Demi Moore Demi Moore is wearing Prabal Gurung, with a Phillip Treacy fascinator on her head (channeling the Royal Wedding, no doubt) -I find that this outfit makes her look somewhat severe, although it certainly is eye-catching and attention-grabbing.  What do you think?

MARY-KATE OLSEN photo | Mary-Kate Olsen Mary-Kate Olsen in Givenchy – I think it looks like a housecoat my mother wore in 1979…and not in a good way. :(
ASHLEY OLSEN photo | Ashley Olsen Ashley Olsen’s Dior Couture is better than her sister’s dress, but even it looks somewhat off. Maybe it’s just me.

PENÉLOPE CRUZ photo | Penelope Cruz Penelope Cruz in Oscar de la Renta, showing everybody how it ought to be done. :)  STUNNING! :)

EMMA STONE photo | Emma Stone I LOVE Emma Stone’s Lanvin, don’t you? It is SO flattering on her :)

MICHELLE WILLIAMS photo | Michelle Williams Michelle Williams in Miu Miu…okay, I guess. Nothing overly special.

SALMA HAYEK photo | Salma Hayek Salma Hayak in McQueen – this is my best of the night…she looks AMAZING!!! That dress is to die for – GORGEOUS!!!!!!!!!!!!

DIANNA AGRON photo | Dianna Agron Dianna Agron in Michael Kors – simply delightful. :)

LEA MICHELE photo | Lea Michele Lea Michele in Escada – soooo pretty! :)

CLAIRE DANES photo | Claire Danes Claire Danes in Calvin Klein – very beautiful, but I feel like she almost always looks like this, don’t you?

LIV TYLER photo | Liv Tyler Liv Tyler’s Givenchy Haute Couture is a wee bit Big Bird, but man do I ever love this one! This is what the Met Gala should be about!! :)

AMY ADAMS photo | Amy Adams Normally I adore Amy Adams and I LOVE L’Wren Scott, but I am not digging this dress AT ALL.  :(

JULIANNE HOUGH & RYAN SEACREST photo | Julianne Hough, Ryan Seacrest Julianne Hough’s Burberry gown reminds me of a Monet painting…I love it! :)

DAKOTA FANNING photo | Dakota Fanning Dakota Fanning’s Valentino is PERFECTION (and SO age-appropriate) – I LOVE IT! :)

EVA MENDES photo | Eva Mendes The color of this Stella McCartney that Eva Mendes is wearing is spectacular, don’t you think? :)

KIRSTEN DUNST photo | Kirsten Dunst I find myself loving and hating this Chanel Haute Couture on Kirsten Dunst at the same time. I need to ponder this one further, I think…I’m just not sure what to think about it.

ISLA FISHER photo | Isla Fisher I love the color of Isla Fisher’s Tory Burch gown, don’t you? :)
CHRISTINA RICCI photo | Christina Ricci Christina Ricci in Zac Posen – no no no :(

EVAN RACHEL WOOD photo | Evan Rachel Wood Evan Rachel Wood in Gucci – SO pretty! :)

MIA WASIKOWSKA photo | Mia Wasikowska I am crazy about this Thakoon that Mia Wasikowska wore – LOVE IT! :)

NAOMI CAMPBELL photo | Naomi Campbell Naomi Campbell wore this McQueen gown…it looks like an angelic piece of art, don’t you think? :)