The first date.
Sweaty palms. Butterflies. Pre-stalking your date on Facebook. And
tracking down tweets and blogs to make a list of talking points for those
uncomfortable pauses in-between sips of wine or small bites of Tuscan
white bean hummus on artisanal pita chips.
C’mon, it’s okay to admit it.
We’re all friends here.
But those things are simple and pretty much stress-free. That’s when it
hits you — the dreaded “what-to-wear factor” and it hits you like a Prada
You know what’s coming. In mere moments every article of clothing in your
closet ends up in a sky-high pile on your bed. Some of it topples onto the
You try on and then frantically kick every last shoe you’ve hastily pulled
out from under the bed. They’ve now been re-distributed all around the
You perspire from the unwanted exercise of putting and pulling clothes on
and off in front of your mirror. And on and off. Again and again.
And there you sit on the edge of your bed…glaring at the clock…as time
mocks your fashion sense with each passing second.
“What to wear?”
Nothing looks right and the question circles around in your poor, reeling
Stop. Take a moment. Give your inner Anna Wintour a time-out.
Take a deep breath.
Calmly turn on your favorite song. Crank it up. Loud. Sip a glass of wine,
if you so desire.
Just remember…you have to feel good and confident in what you select to
wear. Pick something you feel comfortable and strong wearing. And sexy.
Once the Black Keys gets you loose and the wine inspires a little karaoke,
stop and consider your audience.
What type of message do you want to send on this first date?
Seriously. This is a first date. This is his first impression.
Do you want to come across as flirty? Fun-loving? Or, the girl next door?
Look, girls…this really isn’t a “good girl vs. bad girl” decision. It
really comes down to what type of date is this for you?
That’s right. How you look and feel is going to make or break how you feel
about this date. If he doesn’t get it, or get you, at least you will have
done it on your terms.
So, pick one.
If you want to be flirty, it means that you want to be playfully romantic
but feature slightly hidden undertones of sexy (without getting tarted-up,
(Flirty outfit and accessories from modcloth.com)
If you want to be fun-loving it means that you are playful with a dash of
naughty. Perhaps you are seeking laughter and adventure. You want this to
be an evening “out and about” on the town.
(Fun-loving outfit and accessories from express.com)
3. Girl Next Door?
Okay, so you’ve decided to “go retro” with the girl next door look. It’s a
bit old-fashioned, a little down to earth, but also a little enticing.
Everything is implied. Ultimately, you are letting him know that he should
consider that you are a good bet to be a “meet the parents one day” kinda
(Girl Next Door outfit and accessories from anthropologie.com)
So, ladies…think about which message you want to send on your first date
because, if all goes well, you just might just tempt your date to ask for
seconds (a second date, that is). And be sure to go with the style that
suits your personality and suits the person you are dating and the place
you are going.
Most of all, make sure that your message is seen and understood—loud and clear.
Meet your new best friend…InTraffik.com’s Fashion Accomplice:
As a media publication digital editions manager, Leah King manages the creation of the digital replica of design magazine, Dwell, and sees it through as it transforms to be viewed on the iPad, Nook, and Kindle. Shepherding through images and editorial pages, iconic designers and their designs,architects and their creations, and the photographers who shoot them,gives her a unique opportunity to see to the beauty and style produced in each issue. Leah also contributes editorially to dwell.com. In life outside of Dwell, she indulges in her passions for photography, producing graphic design projects, spinning her vinyl albums, collecting vintage electronics and calling it like she sees it over at Caught Looking. She also blabs about design, fashion, technology and architecture five days a week at Smitten Kitten Style.
Upfront: I LOVED IT.
I resisted seeing this movie for a few weeks, but when the long Labor Day weekend approached I decided to catch this movie (saw this movie before heading off to a wedding, so perhaps that skews everything I’m about to write). What else was I supposed to see:”Apollo 18″, “Shark Night 3D”? Why my resistance? All you have to do is take one glance at the poster and it tells you: chick flick combined with, as one friend put it, the “white savior genre” (or as the WSJ critic put it, the white guilt genre). As for the chick flick comment, the male actors in “The Help” are almost an after thought– a handful of boyfriends/husbands, a waiter, a boss, a pastor and all of them playing two-bit roles. Nelsan Ellis(playing “Henry the Waiter” or better known to many of us as Lafayette Reynolds from “True Blood”) has a somewhat pivotal role, but let’s just say the movie would have done just fine without his character. As for the white savior comment, it follows that glorious (infamous) line of movies starting with “Dancing with Wolves” and moving on to “The Last Samurai,” “Gran Torino” and “The Blind Side” – I’m sure I could find similar movies that date before “Dancing with Wolves”, but I am under the impression that “Dancing with Wolves” is seen as the godfather of this genre. I’m not saying that all of those movies are awful and unintentionally racist. I loved “Gran Torino.” I was insulted by “The Last Samurai.” It is just that when you combine “chick flick” with “white savior”, in my mind, a film immediately starts out with two strikes. (For a deeper dive into the “white savior” comment, read Patricia A. Turner’s op-ed in the New York Times.)
Now that I’ve shown my willingness to attack a movie just based on the poster, let’s move on to a movie summary. Skeeter (Emma Stone) has returned to Jackson, Mississippi after graduating from Ole Miss. She finds a job working at a local newspaper answering questions from stay at home moms, but she is soon inspired to write a book about the African-American maids that work in Jackson. This inspiration comes when she finds out that her family maid, Constantine (Cicely Tyson), no longer works for the family and she is given an explanation that feels like a lie from the start. She gets further inspiration when she sees how her hometown friends treat two maids in particular, Aibileen (Viola Davis) and Minny (OctaviaSpencer).
If the above summary isn’t the definition of a “chick flick” combined with the “white savior” genre, I’m not sure what is. On the other hand, I walked out of that movie surprised that two hours and twenty-six minutes had gone by. I LOVED IT. I love it even after thinking about some of the movie flaws such as whether or not Missus Walters (Sissy Spacek) is suffering from dementia or not – seriously, one single moment she can’t even remember what town she lives in while during the rest of the film she seems as sharp as a wacky university professor.
One has to say that this is one of those films that might have a few strikes against it, but it is pushed into the I LOVED IT column by the actresses. Emma Stone lights up the screen (one perhaps can understand Jim Carrey’s video if you see this movie along with “Crazy, Stupid, Love” and “Easy A”). Jessica Chastain (Celia Foote, the woman born on the wrong side of the tracks – and if you’re into thrillers/international intrigue, check out her other film that is currently in the theaters called “The Debt”) brings a bubbly personality that will result in proclamations of love as her last scene ends. Viola Davis portrays perfectly a character that has suffered an enormous loss and yet uses it to develop inner strength. Octavia Spencer plays to comedic perfection that untrusting personality who once she finds you trustworthy will talk your head off (or if you play her wrong will take sweet revenge). Bryce Dallas Howard(Hilly Holbrook), Ahna O’Reilly (Elizabeth Leefolt) and Anna Camp (Jolene French – Anna Camp also is from that “True Blood” cast of characters) are delicious as the “mean girls” of Jackson.
All-in-all, one of the top 5 films of the summer.
I hope you all had a wonderful 2010 summer of music. I certainly did.
It was off to see Nico Vega at the Troubadour. I arrived in time to catch the back half of Scarlet Grey. The place was packed. I wasn’t allowed to stay inside the Troubadour for very long; however. A security guard came in after me and motioned me to come back outside. They wanted to check my camera bag and pat me down. When I initially arrived at the Troubadour one individual checked my ticket, the next my driver’s license and the other just let me through. I was wondering why they weren’t checking my camera bag. I guess they were wondering the same thing and decided to chase me down.
The crowd was totally pumped for Nico Vega and it was absolutely thrilling.
Highlights: Aja, lead singer of Nico Vega, going over to the drums and joining in on the beat. For their last song, Aja went swinging around like a crazy woman, her body gyrating in all directions. The crowd was going nuts. And then a g-string ended up next to her. I heard someone next to me ask, “Did she just remove her g-string?” I believed it for a moment, but on afterthought I do believe someone tossed it up on stage. What a crazy set.
As soon as Nico Vega left the stage an awkward moment occurred — in my opinion — more than half the audience left. Why awkward? Because the headlining act, Sweethead, was up next.
I couldn’t help but wonder if Sweethead went on stage irritated that the majority of the crowd had taken off. If so, it didn’t show as they put on a show – though they did have some problems at the beginning. The lead singer’s wireless microphone blew up on her. She had to go with the standard microphone, which didn’t sit well with her. She kept grabbing the cord and swinging it around like a whip. “I am a dog on a leash. I need my wireless. I am chained, tethered.” She was finally able to get her wireless back and off she went to dance with folks in the audience.
Serrina, the lead singer, loves to toss things. She tossed her wireless against the floor after it broke down on her. She tossed some stage equipment. She tossed some water bottles. She tossed a glass of alcohol — after she drank it. She was very careful with the glass of alcohol. Someone brought her a drink and put it on the stage. I was wondering if she’d knock it over, but she was always careful around it. A couple times I saw her looking down at it to make sure she didn’t knock it over. She later took a drink, thanked the guy who gave it to her and then after the set she smashed it. Wild set. Why did folks leave?
A friend of mine asked me to pick a music night. He wanted to see a band. These sorts of requests make me nervous. I always want to make sure I pick a band that someone is most likely to enjoy. I decided to go with Eastern Conference Champions, who happened to be playing at a place called Spaces 15 Twenty. Now I learned something interesting that night. My friend did some research on the band and saw that they came from Pennsylvania. He then saw a posting from one of his friends in Pennsylvania and decided on a whim to see if his friend had heard of Eastern Conference Champions. And would you know it the guy in Pennsylvania knew the lead singer personally.
Anyways, if anyone doesn’t know, Spaces 15 Twenty is off of Cahuenga. There is an outdoor courtyard and on occasion they showcase bands. They’ve had some good bands there. I had a brief encounter with IO Echo one night while heading off to Hotel Café. I really wish I’d known about that set ahead of time as they’re one of my favorite local bands.
The lead singer of Eastern Conference Champions made a couple of references to the police as helicopters were flying over. Did Spaces 15 Twenty mention to them that sometimes the police come over to shut things down?
“49 songs… expertly mixed, cut and transitioned by two of America’s most popular DJ’s. The songs cover any and everything ‘summer’ related. From songs about summer to songs that just feel like the sunshine season, this multi-genre mix will be sure to make your already great summer even better!”
DJ Jazzy Jeff is here to reclaim his summer jam throne. The once proud right hand man to the Prince of Summertime, has still got that golden gift of starting parties. This time with a time capsule of sun soaked vibes from days past – when your summers felt like they’d never end. This came out a month ago but I was sleeping on it hard core. Maybe because in Venice it hardly feels like the summer has started. There’s only been one seven day stretch of consistent temperature over 72 degrees! (with a summer high of 81) 72 degrees….which also happens to be the high for the month of August. Not that I’m complaining because NYC has sounded like a miserable place all summer…but Al Gore seems like a real lying dick right now. Perhaps this summer mix tape will kick start the summer. Not for my sake but for all the teens looking for the rising temperatures to give them an excuse to lose their minds. You can’t effectively execute a wildin’ spree in balmy weather. At 72 degrees it’s just assault.
At the very least it will make for an awesome mix tape companion piece to my current summer jam, 500 Days of Weezy
FREE DOWNLOAD HERE
- 1. Summertime Intro
- 2. Kool & The Gang: Summer Madness (Live Version)
- 3. Kool & The Gang: Summer Madness
- 4. Quincy Jones: Summer In The City
- 5. Ahmad: Back In The Day
- 6. Ice Cube: It Was A Good Day
- 7. Roy Ayers f/ Mary J Blige: Everybody Loves The Sunshine
- 8. Pharcyde: Passin’ Me By (Ffej Remix)
- 9. Jay-Z f/ Babyface: Sunshine
- 10. Ramsey Lewis: Sun Goddess
- 11. A Tribe Called Quest: Find A Way (Ffej String Edit)
- 12: Bush Babies f/ Mos Def: The Love Song
- 13. Jodeci: Get On Up
- 14. The Commodores: High On Sunshine
- 15. J Dilla f/ Dwele : Think Twice
- 16. Erick Sermon f/ Marvin Gaye: Music (Mick’s Marvapella Edit)
- 17. Bernard Wright: Who Do You Love
- 18. LL Cool J: Loungin’
- 19. A Tribe Called Quest: Hot Sex
- 20. Main Source: Live At The BBQ
- 21. Nuyorican Soul: Nautilus
- 22. Pharcyde & Sublime: Summertime
- 23. Fresh Prince and Jazzy Jeff: Summertime Remix
- 24. Michael Jackson: I Can’t Help It
- 25. De La Soul: Breakdawn
- 26. Musiq: Just Friends
- 27. Carl Thomas: Summer Rain
- 28. Faze-O: Riding High
- 29. Dionne Warwick: Walk On By
- 30. Skee-Lo: I Wish
- 31. Black Moon: Who Got The Props
- 32. Frankie Beverly and Maze: Before I Let Go
- 33. Nu Shooz: I Can’t Wait
- 34. Montell Jordan: This Is How We Do It
- 35: The Roots f/ George Benson: Breezin’
- 36: Fresh Prince and Jazzy Jeff: Time To Chill
- 37. Biggie: Can’t You See
- 38. James Brown: The Payback
- 39. En Vogue: My Lovin’
- 40. Bobby McFerrin: Sunshine Of My Life
- 41. Fifth Dimension: Let The Sun Shine In
- 42. Mos Def: Sunshine
- 43. Nine: Whatcha Want
- 44. Otis Redding: Sittin’ On The Dock
- 45. 2Pac: I Get Around (Mick’s String Edit)
- 46. Zapp: Computer Love (Terry’s Mirage On The Water Mix)
- 47. Seals And Croft: Summer Breeze
- 48. Jay-Z: Dear Summer
- 49. Weldon Irvine: Morning Sunrise
Don’t be fooled by the smell of barbecue in the air, the popping lids of iced cold beer, and all the smiling people in trunks and bikinis riding bicycles. The source of their pleasure is a scorching gaseous star emitting cancerous UV rays that want to kill them. If anything, stage a revolt this summer: Stay indoors. Defy the sun by opening all the windows and finding a good book to read.
Sure, in this age of the e-reader, a whole library can be taken with you wherever you go, including to all those sunny outdoor places, but have you ever tried to get sand out of a Kindle? Me neither, but it doesn’t sound like a lot of fun. Plus, there are crowds to contend with. You’re better off in the comfort of your own home. Why throw rent away? The truth is, with the right reading material it won’t matter. Let books take you where you want to go. And why not start at the top with Herman Melville’s Moby Dick. Sure it’s over six hundred pages of dense reading, but relax, you’ve got all summer! If you don’t read it now when will you ever? Plus, it’s an adventure story. Takes place on the high seas. Perfect for the season. And quit whining about difficult reading, you’re an adult now, time to put the Harry Potter down.
Okay, maybe you’ve just got something against whales (hmm…I’m telling you, you may want to check this book out!). Maybe, you get seasick easily, or I don’t know, something else, like it’s not quite the tale you’re looking for. (more…)
Every summer should have a focus. Some of us surf, go on holiday, catch various concerts rolling through town, engage in exercise as the weather begins to warm – and then there is me and the girls like me: the boy crazy girls that await the prospect of a summer crush – we wait for the boys of summer.
The boys of summer are those men you meet in the most random of encounters. At a gig that your friend is playing, in the park, at the grocery store, at a summer party where everyone is a little sweaty-a little tipsy, they are all around you and everywhere you look. Those boys make every summer something to look forward to. They make the chance meetings at a random bar even more interesting. They turn summer parties into a chance for romance and late night chat session with your girlfriends.
These days I am older and the boys of summer seem a little further away. They are still around, still catching the corner of my eye as they walk past, but now that my boy of summer has turned into the man I live with I don’t get to play like I once did. Now I get to listen with much enjoyment to all of my girlfriends and the boys they meet. They aren’t boys – although many are what I refer to as man/boys, not quite a MAN but still not a boy – they are the Peter Pans with loud guitars…What?! We are around musicians A LOT!
So now I am the faithful observer. Watching the games play out around me. But it seems that even that is changing. A lot of my girlfriends are single – or on their way to becoming single. I think about this often. How is it that my parents generation – or even some of my aunts and cousins all fell into marriages? A nice setting of husband and wife. Yet there are the rest of us – not ready to engage into the plunge of Mr and Mrs. Nor are we of the opinion that this is important anymore. So the question is: How did we come to this? Did the boys of summer change us? Did the chance for fun become a lot more fulfilling than the option of a wedding and a husband?
My girlfriends and I are all technically single. Not every last one of us, but a majority of us. When I say single – I mean not married. Several of us have boyfriends or boys we date semi-exclusively – but none of us (again with the exception of a few) are betrothed or married to another. We talk about men, about people we’ve dated. We trade horror stories of what went wrong and why it didn’t work out but the under the surface theme is none of us are hell bent on becoming a wife. It just isn’t a priority anymore. Of course I’m speaking about the few girls I know really well. I’m sure some of the girls I know do really want the white picket fence, a husband and baby, but if they do it’s not something they’ve ever discussed with me. The thing I find so interesting about this is how it occurred? When did we all sway so far away from happily ever after that we ended up being the girl looking for the boy for the summer?
I think it comes down to a couple of things. Get ready – this is a big shocker – but the times, they just changed. And I think they changed when none of us were looking!? We come from a generation of divorces and failed marriages. So did somewhere way down deep inside we figure out that maybe the whole thing about marriage is outdated? In a time when our state is fighting for the rights of gay people to be able to engage in marriage to whomever they choose – there are a whole other group of us that just don’t care anymore. I write that and I even wonder if it’s true? Do I not care about being Mrs. Rollins any more? I mean, I still love Henry, but now I think to myself, living in sin can’t be all that bad! I know it’s definitely less paperwork. You see, I was married once. I got divorced and boy did it take a long time to fill out all the right paperwork to get it undone. AND it was expensive. No one ever tells you that that wedding is going to cost a ton to get out of.
But there it is. Marriage, just isn’t that important anymore. Ok….Ok….maybe it’s just me. I can easily say that sometimes what I think is not necessarily what anyone else thinks. I prefer to remain a little quirky. I will tell you this – the boys of summer and all the fun that comes along with them are what makes being young and figuring all this out worth it.
For myself and my quirkiness, I do know what means the most to me summer after summer. It’s the Pacific Ocean, hanging out with my family & friends, margaritas, tequila shots and the chance to have a crush on a boy for the summer. My boys of summer may be only in my mind but a little crush never hurt anyone – and it sure makes summer fun.
So ladies get ready – because summer and the boys are ready when you are.
*A quick note: A boy for the summer does not have to equal a young man – it’s whatever floats your boat ladies. Lori – that’s just for you…muah.