I really liked the Soundcheck Smackdown about the banjo that was on a few years back, so I was pleased to hear there’d be one about the ukelele. Honestly I’m pretty ambivalent about the ukelele, but Jesse David Fox - a writer who I love and usually agree with - recently wrote a piece in defense of the ukelele that actually didn’t move me?
I think I am just bothered by the character Theo in the movie Her, and I also could give zero shits about the show How I Met Your Mother. Because that Israel Kamakawiwo’ole cover of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow" is great, and how can you not like that scene in The Jerk?! I think it’s interesting that he gets into the implications of tweeness vis-à-vis female empowerment - see: Deschanel, Zooey; Baby, Sexy - but that seems a bit of an unnecessary tangent (especially coming from a male writer. I also feel like he doxxed all the songs he puts on the mix tapes he gives every girlfriend, which was distracting.) Anyway, that’s probably why I didn’t buy all of what he was selling. I’m often reminded of a Freudian truism in arguments like this, and feel like saying: “sometimes a ukelele is just a ukelele.”
So like it or not, you will have an ally in your corner. But really, if you don’t like The Jerk, you’re just a loser.
There is a lot of integrity here and also a good deal of ambition. This is a movie concerned with — and influenced by — an especially rich and complicated slice of 20th-century European culture, and therefore a reckoning, characteristically playful but also fundamentally serious, with some very ugly history.
The reviews are coming in for We Anderson’s new film, The Grand Budapest Hotel, and they are mixed. Of course, I am going to see it and probably like it - Jeff Goldblum! F. Murray Abraham! Ralph Fiennes! - because Wes Anderson is so creative, and makes the experience of seeing a movie feel, erm, grand.
But just because the visuals are striking (see the model of an observatory below), it doesn’t mean the movie is equally powerful. Quoted above is A.O. Scott, noting that the time period this movie is set in is one of complex politics, and, spoiler alert: bookended by tragedy. From all the other reviews I’ve read (New Yorker, NYMag, TNR) it sounds as if this historical significance is touched upon, but not given much weight. From an historical perspective, I feel like that’s a missed opportunity, but from an entertainment perspective - I guess you should go see Monuments Men if that’s what you’re into?
Frankly, for a film set in a made up country, I don’t know if it really has to be historically accurate or resonant. If Wes Anderson wants to go full-Wes Anderson, we should probably just let him. I’m in it for the visuals mostly anyhow.
with the Lena thing, everyone already knows what she looks like without makeup or airbrushing if they watch the show, so it felt a little less like feminism than a mean-girl-type faux-best intentions/faux-feminist jab at Lena, i.e., ‘Let’s show the world how you really looked in a fancy magazine,’ even though it turned out they hadn’t airbrushed much at all.You can always tell when Edith Zimmerman is writing a profile.
Life is life. There are ups and downs, and they will give an 8-year-old the Best Pumpkin at any given time and you just have to be prepared for these type of things.Kanye West, speaking truth, as is his wont.
I think we all know that you can eat pizza in the morning, pizza in the evening, pizza at suppertime. Hell, when pizza’s on a bagel - you can eat pizza anytime.
THIS IS NOT HOW IT WORKS FOR WAFFLE EGG TACOS.
Apparently Taco Bell is trying to launch a whole breakfast menu - and hey, I love a breakfast burrito - but I wouldn’t necessarily think, “hmmm, you know what I want right now? A cup of COFFEE from the TACO BELL and some bacon and eggs encased by a waffle.” Because here’s my take on that - in theory this is all very good and delicious, but in reality you should be doing this at home. Breakfast is a sacred meal to me. Tacos are a sacred food. I do not pick a bone so much with the idea of this but just its general existence upsets me. We need to chill as a society on the food hybrid trend. Make your damn eggo and eggs at home! If you combine them taco-style, that’s your business. Also, this just looks like some Denny’s nastiness, and guys, we’re all better than that.
Now go to you nearest grocery store and buy a pizza bagel. Save the breakfast burritos for a special brunch. And please, do yourself a favor and don’t get coffee from taco bell.
If we’re being honest, and why wouldn’t we be? I will always love the “Kidney, Now!” song from 30 Rock.
Generally I think women should take a passive aggressive approach to buying clothing for their male partners.Jonah Peretti and his sister Chelsea explore the existential issues plaguing us all.
A humpday playlist. For those of you feeling empowered, and/or suffering from a weird finger ailment (so, me, mainly):
- Rollerblades - Eliza Doolittle
- Freedom! ‘90 - George Michael
- Lemonade - Tsunami Bomb
- How are You Doing? - The Living Sisters
- Any Major Dude Will Tell You - Steely Dan
- Both Sides Now - Joni Mitchell
- And So it Goes - Billy Joel
- Think for Yourself - The Beatles
And, of course: Since U Been Gone, because once time my cousin who is a Respected NPR Journalist and I moshed to this in the basement at the Ace Hotel.
So, anonymously posted celebrity gossip is the shining future of news, and here is your suicide pill. What you do with it is up to you.Today in Tabs is a brief moment of pure joy amidst the rest of my dreary inbox offerings each day.
That Girl doesn’t sit through drifty, disconnected conversations with men who can’t show up. That Girl doesn’t care if you think she’s attractive or appropriate or easy to be around or not. She’s not caught up in some dude’s love affair—with himself, with his stuff, with his fantasy of how easy and sexy and mysterious True Love will be when he finally finds it, just like a porn flick starring him with a soundtrack by The Shins. That Girl is willing to risk his disapproval for the sake of her own happiness.POLLY! As usual, Polly dishes out some helpful and heartening Real Talk. Though I personally identify with ill communication, this advice hits home.