Most of us have been teased or bullied at one point, especially at school. And even if we haven’t experienced it firsthand, chances are we’ve seen it happen to someone else. I know that when I worked in a high school, I saw that kind of negativity almost every day. It’s cruel, it’s dragging kids down, and Lady Gaga knows it. Lots of her songs preach acceptance and the importance of being one's weird and wonderful self—her hit ... Read More
I really dig the down-to-earth sound of singer-songwriter Dana Falconberry. Her poetic lyrics and gentle, rich voice are perfect for a day inside, hiding from the cold and rain. (The bluesy song "Baby Blue Sky" is particularly neat, if you ask me.) Falconberry hails from Austin, TX, and according to her website, her latest EP was recorded in an old church there. She's been touring a lot and winning the hearts of critics and listeners alike, and is definitely worth ... Read More
I didn’t become a fan of Japanese animation until I was in college, (my mom forbade me to watch Sailor Moon as a kid because she thought it was sexist) and while I’m not a huge fan of anime/manga, I'm in love with the Studio Ghibli films. Co-founded by genius writer/director/animator Hayao Miyazaki, the studio won an Oscar for Best Animated Film in 2003, with Spirited Away. If you didn't catch that flick, you may have seen the amazing Ponyo, Princess ... Read More
Hands up if you’ve seen Bridesmaids! OK, keep your hands up if you’ve seen it more than once. Trust me, you’re not alone. People all around the world—girls and guys alike—fell in love with the comedy film Bridesmaids last year. I’m sure many of them would love to see a sequel, too—that is, if you’re not too disillusioned by the fact that 90% of sequels are only half as good, at most, as the original. (Believe me, ... Read More
On December 31, 2011, 29 year-old Esme Barrera– a fixture in the Austin, TX, music scene– attended a New Year's Eve show at the 29th Street Ballroom. Hours later, she was found dead in her apartment. Police are relying only on a general profile of the man who may have committed the murder, and there are no suspects at this time. It's horrifying but possible that such a tragedy might go unresolved.Esme was beloved among Austin musicians and music lovers ... Read More
I learned three things recently, and all from reading one article:       1) It is possible to swallow an entire pen, by accident, without causing yourself serious harm. 2) Pens sometimes do not show up on x-rays (despite the fact that they are PENS). 3) A pen that has been hanging out in your stomach for 25 years is still capable of writing. It’s gross, it’s weird, and it’s 100 percent true. A woman in Britain ... Read More
La Sera performing at the Bowery Ballroom in March. Photo credit: Bao Nguyen. No matter how you look at it, 2011 was the Year of the Woman, music-wise. It was a year ruled by Adele and Florence & the Machine and Lady Gaga, by Rihanna and Nicki Minaj and even Britney Spears. (I feel like I’m time-traveling back to become my 13-year-old self by saying this, but I actually really like Britney’s new music, okay?) And those are just the chart-toppers ... Read More
   I can’t believe we haven't written anything on Nightwish yet! Though the frontwoman has changed over the years, this Finnish symphonic metal band has always had a lady singing lead. (Tarja Turunen was the lead singer until 2005, when she was replaced by Swedish singer Anette Olzon.) The sound has changed a bit over the years; Anette’s voice is not as operatic as Tarja’s octave-defying vocals, and the music has grown more and more ... Read More
I am so far from a wine purist that it’s not even funny. I mean, I'd prefer it doesn't come from a box, but 90% of the time, my choice is based on the attractiveness of the label. (Yes, I’m one of those people.) So this article from one of last week’s issues of the New York Times caught my eye almost as much as the labels it discusses. There’s apparently a trend in the wine-naming world toward sassy, obnoxious titles. From an advertising ... Read More
I browse so many articles online each day, but this one's my favorite today, by far. After seeing a lesbian couple outside a bar in Washington State, William Adam Lane started yelling nasty comments, and even smashed the back window of their car. Were the women intimidated? Did they cry, or go into hysterics, or faint? Nope. Instead, one of the women tackled the man and pinned him to the ground to keep him from getting away, while they waited for the authorities ... Read More
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