Friday, January 30, 2009

What I'm watching today...

Reviewed: Miss Sixty New Shelly Pump in Brown

Yesterday the lemon that is my apartment was infiltrated by a dust haze from the demolition work going on two floors below me. The dust was so thick I couldn't properly see across my living room, and my body was rebelling from inhaling, so I decided to get the heck out. I could have gone down the street to the cafe on the corner, got a cafe au lait and worked on my book edits, but instead I decided to go to the shoe basement at Century 21 where I purchased some new Miss Sixty oxford heels.

They were marked down to 49.99 from 159.99, so what is that, like, 70%? I hate wasting time doing math.

I shouldn't have bought them. I should go return them right now. The economy sucks and it is getting worse. Everyone is losing their jobs. No one wants to publish books right now. I only make about $150 a week at my current job. Fifty dollars could buy me food or pay down some of my credit card debt. Fifty dollars could feed a bunch of starving kids for a year, I think. Because of all of these reasons, I am a maniac for refusing to relinquish them.

They are just so pretty.

70 Stars.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Reviewed: Stonyfield Farms Organic Nonfat French Vanilla Yogurt

As a little girl, when my Girl Scout troup went to Baskin Robbin's and all the other Scouts ordered Pink Bubblegum ice cream, I always went with plain vanilla. (And occasionally, Gold Medal Ribbon, the best ice cream ever...but that's for another review.) Thankfully, now that I've discovered French Vanilla, I can thank the French for giving me something slightly less boring and lame to order than Vanilla. While vanilla may be a staid and dull, please-and-thank-you kind of flavor, French Vanilla is pink-cheeked and demure, with black lace underwear.

Which is why every time I go to the grocery store and they are all out of the Nonfat Stonyfield French Vanilla, I'm convinced there must be a bunch of skinny, exercise-obsessed, wannabe-interesting, leggings-wearing bitches with the same idea buying up all of my favorite yogurt. Why can't the store manager realize the demand and order more Nonfat French Vanilla and less Peach? And seriously, Key Lime? Gross!

58 Stars.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Reviewed: Martha Stewart Living

Lots of things have changed in the last five years; my location, hair color, scowling at babies and dogs, etc,. Another thing to change is my preference for Martha Stewart's magazine. 

Living in New York, for me, means trading out a lot of things. Big, open skies for bustling streets. Comfortable proximity to nature for uncomfortable closeness to unnatural things (my downstairs neighbor.) Hiking through a lush, temperate forest for carefully avoiding that pile of puke in Times Square (or Flatiron, or the Meatpacking District, or the LES, or Herald Square.)  

I love New York--there is so much to love. But lately I've come to miss some of the things I traded to live here, and top of the list is, though a simple idea, one I hadn't stopped to think of for quite a while: beauty.

Of course, beauty can be found in everything, including this city. Coming up the NJ Turnpike, in that little incline before you descend into the Holland Tunnel, the skyline is a magnificent sight. The Statue of Liberty as seen from the F train on a clear day. Even, sometimes, just happening upon a quiet street in the Village and trying on a pair of red satin slingbacks that remind you of the ones you used to play dress-up in as a child.

But for the everyday kind of life--passing the grizzly old dudes hacking up a lung at the OTB on the corner, the seemingly-normal woman slip out her false teeth on the subway and take a mouth-open nap, watching a bum relieve himself in the corner--all of these things make Martha Stewart necessary. I just quietly open up my copy of Living and turn to the arrangements of creamy roses in vintage vases on a rustic farmhouse table dressed in crisp white linen with scalloped edges. Ah. 

87 Stars. Say what you will about Ice-Queen Martha, she is good at what she does. I have attempted to make tons of the things in her magazine with varying degrees of failure, but you know what? I never stop trying. 

Also, one day compare your regular run-of-the-mill wedding magazine with Martha Stewart Weddings and you tell me if you see any midriff-exposing, torso cut-out's, rhinestone bridal gowns. 

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Reviewed: Deadwood, the Complete Series

In the first sentence of this review it would probably be prudent for me to admit that I haven't actually even looked at all of the DVD's in this product. BUT...Deadwood is hands down the best television show I've ever watched. I kind of don't even need to finish this review because A) the box is super pretty and shiny, B) the DVD's are housed in a booklet of shiny cardstock sleeves and not crappy plastic molds, and C) Bullock.

"The Meaning of Endings: David Milch on the Conclusion of Deadwood" included as one of the extra bonuses you don't find in any of the three individual season DVD's, shows all the frustration, heartache and bitterness most fans felt over the show's cancellation. Milch walks around the deserted Deadwood set--a really extraordinary full-size city set--while bitching about the demise of his show. He's really an entertaining guy. 

But the design of the pages is really magnificent--full color stills from the series side-by-side with authentic black-and-white images of the real Deadwood. The portrait of Molly Parker dressed up in all her 1800's city-woman finery is to die for. 

99 stars. 

Reviewed: Rachel Ray's Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle in Green

A few months ago I received the cookware set consisting of pots and pans. They are really pretty to look at and make me feel like a person who cooks dinner rather than ordering in for almost every meal. By this point I have used each piece at least once and have found they do cook evenly and nothing sticks to the bottom. In order to protect the paint and non-stick coating they must be hand washed. This is a drawback to using them. Despite this, I became obsessed with getting the rest of the set and making restaurant-quality grilled cheese sandwiches. My prayers were answered and I received the griddle/grill for Christmas.

Boy, was I disappointed! The main reason to have this expensive cookware is the looks, and my griddle came with the majority of paint chipped off the corners. When I picked it up to inspect the damage more paint chips fell into my lap. Since the griddle was a gift from Rusty's parents I did my best to hide the bare corners and then quickly put it in the cupboard with the rest of the set. Although they had purchased it for me, they did so over the internet with the help of R-Man. If it were to be returned we would be the ones to do it, therefore there was no reason to upset them.

In the end we decided to just keep the busted up thing because we wouldn't have to be careful with it. After grilling or griddling I could just throw it in the dishwasher rather than scrubbing it with my baby soft hands. 

Also, I wanted a sandwich. 

So far we've made some grilled cheese, grilled some pork chops, and griddled some pancakes. The thing gets really hot and cooks as evenly as the cookware. Overall, there are no complaints about the cooking which is that main purpose of the piece I suppose. Since there is no scrubbing involved in the clean-up, we use it more now than any other piece.

70 stars: It cooks amazingly, but the chips still anger me when I see them. I should have sent it back in attempt to get a discount or free stuff.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Reviewed: CoverGirl Outlast All Day Lipcolor

I've never been a giant fan of make-up, especially lipsticks. No matter how carefully I apply them I usually have a ring of color outside my actual lip line or some on my teeth. More to the point, I'm not that big a fan of my mouth/smile so I try to bring as little attention to that area by playing up my eyes and keeping a bare lip. Right.

Anyway, I was in Wal-Mart when I saw a two for one type of deal and thought to myself: "I am about to graduate and get married. I am a woman of the world. It is about time I learned to wear lipstick."

This isn't the thick, waxy lipstick of yesterday. It is more like a less sticky lipgloss. As the directions state it takes only 2 easy, breezy steps to have lipcolor all day. I applied the color from the first tube and waited the approximate thirty seconds before applying the top clear coat that gives you the shine and locks the color in place. Then, I ate a cinnamon roll forgetting what I had done the previous minute. I ran back to the bathroom and found the color still vibrant, but shellacked some more sealer on anyway. I bought two colors, but the color I tried for the day was "nude" and wasn't too far off from my natural color. It took Rusty a moment to notice anything, then he told me I had to wear it every day.

Overall I was pretty pleased with my purchase. I was impressed that is lasted all day despite my attempts of removing it by eating, drinking, and licking my lips. Each color comes with the clear gloss so I left one in my coat pocket and used it throughout the day for that added shine, but as a sort of chapstick, too.

97 stars: 2009, year of the grown-up.