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Monday, December 29, 2014

Nicki Minaj is queen, I am her subject, and on December 15th she issued a decree.   After a year dominated by Iggy Azalea getting 'Fancy', Nicki shifts the spotlight back where it belongs with her new album 'The Pinkprint'.   Her single 'Anaconda' is reminiscent of the more pop friendly eccentric Nicki we all know and love, with a video that had me very curious as to how she can move her ass like that.  But what I really love about this album is songs like 'I Lied', 'Bed of Lies', and 'The Crying Game': songs that make you feel something.  No offense to Iggy, she's got a great voice for rapping, but songs like 'New Bitch' and 'Fuck Love' are great to run to, but they don't connect with me as a listener.   Nicki raps as easily as she breathes.  She makes it look so easy, and frankly she makes Iggy Azalea look like a novice.  
'The Pinkprint' is graced with features from Beyonce, Ariana Grande, Jeremih, and of course Drake and Lil' Wayne among others.  'Truffle Butter' which features Drake and Lil' Wayne has a simply unbelievably smooth sound, and Lil' Wayne's verse on 'Only', for lack of a better word, SLAYS. Their performances do their job perfectly, which is to highlight Nicki's talent.  

Long story short, buy the album because it's glorious.

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Friday, December 26, 2014

There were a number of highly anticipated films released on Christmas day; 'Unbroken', 'The Interview' and 'Annie' to name a few.  But the film I ended up seeing was 'Into the Woods'.  I didn't know what to expect upon walking in, but was pleased with this irreverent mash up of classic fairy tales.  The music was tremendous, and the performances (especially of Meryl Streep and Anna Kendrick) were spectacular.  They seemed to have quite a bit of fun with the stories and didn't take them too seriously.  The number "Agony" demonstrated that very well and had me laughing out loud a number of times.
However, I will say that I enjoyed the first 1/2-2/3 of the movie much more than the last bit.  The story really lost me when they kept moving to different people in the woods.  It felt very aimless and somewhat disorienting.  I also had a problem with Johnny Depp's slightly pedophile like pursuit of Red Riding Hood.  It was unsettling to say the least.
Aside from those elements, I thought the film was quite enjoyable.  The set and wardrobe were gorgeous, and all around I think it is a great choice for an outing this holiday season.
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Saturday, December 20, 2014

If you don't follow Miguel's social media (or if your best friend isn't a connoisseur of hip-hop like mine is), then you may not know that Miguel released three new tracks on his Souncloud account yesterday.  Do yourself a favor, and head over there for a listen.  The gent that released favorites of mine such as "Use Me" and "Girl With The Tattoo" has done it again.  The tracks feature his unbelievable vocals, and are punctuated by well placed electric guitar work.  I have been especially loving "coffee", which was on repeat for the better part of the evening last night.
I highly recommend you take a listen, but let me just say that if you don't enjoy music of an "explicit" nature, then Miguel may not be your cup of tea, though he certainly is mine.
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Friday, December 19, 2014

I moved!!  Yes, after four long years living in "Happy Valley", I've finally made it back to the east coast.  I have been so lucky during my time in Utah to have found some incredible life long friends. And because I am absolutely terrible with goodbyes, we decided to go about it in the comfort of my favorite restaurant: Communal.    
Simply put, Communal is bliss.  The restaurant encourages farm to table practices as well as family style dining.  It is quite pricey for a young adult's budget, but is worth every penny.  I have been for dinner a number of times, but due to my work schedule had never been able to go to Saturday brunch.  In order to satisfy this ambition, I arranged for my last day at the bakery to be this past Friday and informed my friends that brunch would be happening the following morning.  
I could not have wished for a better final get together.  We were seated in a secluded alcove with an enormous table for the four of us; our waiter was an awkwardly familiar face, and the food was divine.   Saying hello to a mimosa and heavenly pancetta hash made saying goodbye to these girls so much easier, and I wouldn't have had it any other way.

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Thursday, December 11, 2014

I'm going to drop some knowledge on you, I love the Victoria's Secret Fashion LOVE it.  I watch it every year, and it is one of my favorite parts of the holiday season.  That being said, with the wrong commentary, it can also be an incredibly uncomfortable experience.  As you probably know, the show aired this past Tuesday on CBS and it was glorious.  The performances were stellar, the costumes were unbelievable, and all the models looked fantastic.  Now do you notice that I said fantastic?  I didn't say that they looked thin, or disgustingly skinny, or that their bodies were "bangin'", or that they should eat a cheeseburger.  I didn't say any of those things because positive or negative, commenting on another woman's body or on your own body is NEVER appropriate and only furthers a culture of negative body image.
Now I understand that there are many problems within the fashion and entertainment industries that put the health of models and girls everywhere at risk, but any and all comments on the way their bodies look only makes it worse.  I think sometimes we assume it's okay to say positive things about women with more voluptuous figures and to say negative things about women with thin figures, but that is NOT acceptable.  When you voice negative comments about thin women (body of a twelve year old boy comes to mind), you are alienating a group of women and telling them they don't belong.  When you comment that said woman is so thin and that you wish you had her "thigh gap" (a horrendous new trending topic) you only further our society's preoccupation with achieving a "perfect" form. 
Instead of thinking about or discussing the way our bodies look, let's instead think in terms of health and comfort.  Are you healthy?  Do you feel comfortable in your own skin?  These are questions that are actually worth considering.  The worst question in the world is "Do I look fat in this?"  Do not ask this question, the answer will never be relevant to the actual question at hand: "Do I feel comfortable in this?", which only you can answer.   
Don't misunderstand me, I think it's acceptable and should be encouraged to compliment yourself and your peers, it's the way you do so that is important.  If your friend has set out to become healthier and she's looking great.  Tell her she looks great, fantastic, healthy; but don't tell her she looks skinnier and that you're jealous of her collarbones.  Because a) that's weird, and b) now everyone in the conversation is preoccupied over their body image.  Let yourself be more than your body, and give everyone else (including VS models) that same right.
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Friday, December 5, 2014

I saw The Theory of Everything this week, and don't even know how to describe my response to it.  Everything about it was breathtaking.  It had stunning visuals that are typical of Focus Features, but the performances of the cast were UNBELIEVABLE (I caps-locked to convey the gravity).  Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones spoke volumes with little dialogue, and had me laughing and crying at numerous points throughout their performances.

Eddie didn't appear to be playing a role at all, rather he became Hawking and told his story with unbelievable grace and the complexity that it deserves.  Felicity was flawless.  She showed the world a real woman, rather than a saint, who was Hawking's partner not caregiver.

Needless to say, I highly highly recommend you see this film, and to bring everyone you've ever met to the theater with you.
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