Rock legend Bob Dylan was honored by President Barack Obama with the Medal of Freedom today in a ceremony held at the White House.
"Bob’s voice, with its weight, its unique gravely power, was redefining not just what music sounded like, but the message it carried and how it made people feel," Mr. Obama said of the musician. (CBS/AP)
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My Playlist for the Royal Wedding

Tomorrow, the 29th of April, Prince William and Kate Middleton will be married. The guest list notably lacks the President of the United States, but does include the likes of Kanye West. Being a modern wedding, with cars in place of carriages and a rapper along side royals, it has been said that the couple could be the first in royal history to have a prenup. I personally think this is a great idea.

Here is my playlist for the future king and queen:

  • Kanye West - Gold Digger ft. Jamie Foxx
  • Nas - Queens Get The Money
  • Fergie - London Bridge
  • Fleetwood Mac - Gold Dust Woman

Rulers make bad lovers

you better put your kingdom up for sale

  • The Sex Pistols - God Save the Queen
  • Queen - Killer Queen
  • David Bowie - Queen Bitch
  • Heart - Little Queen
  • Adam and the Ants - Prince Charming
  • Taylor Swift - Love Story
  • Acid Girls - Lightworks

Reading an article about “Cool hunting”

An old article from The New Yorker talked about “cool hunters” and the paradox of finding cool and having it move on to something else (among other things, it was a really long article). Though the writer was talking in terms of Reeboks and Polos, it made me think about Warped Tour and Tumblr.

As alternative bands become popular, many of their fans reject them for “selling out” or because they’re not “cool” anymore. This is why Warped Tour is being advertised on the radio and having long lines of little girls wanting to meet Chistofer Drew while older fans who want to mosh and have a good time (ahem, me and my friends included) complain.

Similarly, it’s inevitable that more people will make their way to the site that those of us that love Tumblr as it is don’t approve of. Xanga had its day. Myspace did, too. Now the majority obsess over Facebook and Twitter, but Tumblr is a Cool Hunter’s dream so, unfortunately, the unthinkable will happen and most of us will move on.

10 Day Challenge: Four Books

I could name some books you’ve most likely read, like “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” or “Speak,” and that would be a fantastic reading list, but I’d rather introduce whoever takes the time to read this to some great, underrated books instead.

  • "Stop Pretending: What Happened When My Big Sister Went Crazy," the autobiographical first novel by Sonya Sones. This was not my first novel in verse (I’m also a fan of Sharon Creech’s “Heartbeat”) but it was the first that blew my mind. I have read this book probably ten times and I will most certainly read it again.
  • "Notes From The Teenage Underground" by Simmone Howell made me love art again. Growing up I wanted to be an art teacher for some time, many little girls did; and I still liked art into adolescence, I was called “artsy” by some, but I didn’t love it like I do now and I think that has to do with Howell’s protagonist Gem. She discovers Andy Warhol and the underground and becomes inspired to make an independent film and in reading this, I started to see art and film in a new way, too.
  • "Manstealing for Fat Girls" by Michelle Embree is a brilliant, off-center teen drama that I became absolutely swallowed up by when I read it in the 8th or 9th grade. Some of the images have stuck with me after all these years and when I listen to Blink-182’s Dude Ranch or Enema of the State sometimes I still think about it (I listened to them on repeat when I read the book, sort of making my own soundtrack).
  • "Dreamseller," a drug memoir written by the one and only Brandon Novak. A former pro-skater and friend of Bam Margera, Novak almost lost everything to an addiction to heroin. As a fan of Novak’s, I had to buy his book simply because he wrote it. It turned out to be more important and inspiring than I had imagined and I have since passed along my copy to a number of friends - and it has scuffs and tears to show for it.This book will make you laugh, cry and cringe, and when you’re done, you’ll have a new view of drug addiction.

While you’re all mourning John Lennon,

you should also remember the unfortunate suicide of Jan Paul Beahm, aka Darby Crash, of the Germs, on December 7, 1980. Normally, a musician’s young death would make them immortal - Kurt Cobain, Sid Vicious… But Crash’s death was over-shadowed by John Lennon’s assassination.

The New York Times Magazine’s The Hollywood Issue features a set of videos called “Fourteen Actors Acting.” Actors like Jesse Eisenberg, James Franco and Natalie Portman were set in front of plain backgrounds, with no special effects and, in the end, no words. It’s simple and beautiful. This is acting in its truest form.

"In the past, we have invited the year’s great performers to be  themselves for the camera and, on video, to talk about what they do.  This year, we asked them to do it: to show us — in a few gestures and  with a few props but without dialogue or story — what acting is. And  here they are, striking some of the classic attitudes of cinema, turning  their bodies and faces into instruments of pure, deep and enigmatic  emotion." — A.O. Scott
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Graduating & Moving On

This Monday, I start back to school. Some of my friends will be attending the same college as me. Others are working. In light of this, I have composed a list of songs about graduating high school, going away to college and moving on.

  • Plushgun - How We Roll
  • Good Charlotte - The Click
  • Head Automatica - Graduation Day
  • Something Corporate - If You C Jordan
  • Blink-182 - Going Away To College
  • Brand New - Jude Law & A Semester Abroad
  • Vampire Weekend - Campus
  • Foo Fighters - Fraternity
  • Trendy - Alpha Sigma Sigma
  • Green Day - Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)
  • Rilo Kiley -  Pictures Of Success
  • Something Corporate - I Woke Up In A Car
  • Brand New - Soco Amaretto Lime
  • Blink-182 - Carousel

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In researching for this list, I found some other lists I liked.

For a funny list of songs about college, including faux assignments, click here. Or for a school survival guide in song, go here.

Vampires Suck

This week, a new comedy is in theaters, much like the popular Scary Movie and similar parodies. Vampires Suck pokes fun at “contemporary teen angst and romance movies" and more specifically at the Twilight Saga.

In response to this, I’ve decided to make a list of songs about vampires, werewolves, and good old sucking.

  • Cage - Look At What You Did
  • Atmosphere - Vampires
  • The Misfits - We Bite
  • Type O Negative - Black No. 1
  • Bobby “Boris” Pickett - Monster Mash
  • Warren Zevon - Werewolves Of London
  • Duran Duran - Hungry Like The Wolf
  • Yak Ballz - Silver Bullet
  • Pearl Jam - Blood
  • The Cure - Lullaby
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers - Suck My Kiss
  • Blood On The Dance Floor! - S My D

"Thinspo"

I do not take part in the whole “thinspo” scene. I’m a plus-sized girl, and I’m pretty happy with my body. I have moments of insecurity, but for the most part I really don’t mind it. I wish I could be a little more confident in my own skin, but I know that losing weight won’t make me more confident or outgoing. You are who you are, no matter the size.

However, if I were to look to photos of celebrities, models, etc. for thinspiration, I would not choose the typical collar bone shots, or skinny little scene girls. I would choose the classy women I find beautiful, like Katy Perry and Dita Von Teese. Or, better yet, I would choose Chantal Claret of Morningwood.

Chantal is not a skinny -Hollywood type. She is a voluptuous woman. Despite her size, however, she is still confident and sexy. That is more inspiring to me than any “thinspo” photo.

Chantal Claret

In honor of Friday the Thirteenth:

A list of 13 songs that are, or seem to me to be, about luck.

  • Social Distortion - Bad Luck
  • Radiohead - Lucky
  • Modest Mouse - Shit Luck
  • Alanis Morissette - Ironic
  • The Strokes - Trying Your Luck
  • Cage The Elephant - Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked
  • Big D and the Kids Table - Shining On
  • The Grateful Dead - Loser
  • Bob Dylan - Simple Twist Of Fate
  • The Moldy Peaches - Lucky Charms
  • Bright Eyes - Easy/Lucky/Free
  • Belle & Sebastian - Expectations
  • Something Corporate - Bad Day

Another reason to go to Times Square:

Pop-Tarts Brand is renting a building in this popular tourist attraction, between Sixth Ave. and Broadway. The New York Times has said that the store is more focused on marketing and image than it is on sales. As far as sales go, however, the store sure has a lot to offer.

Menu items at the cafe include Pop-Tart Sushi composed of three crumbled flavors of Pop-Tarts, wrapped in a Fruit Roll-Up; a cinnamon roll topped with cream-cheese icing and pieces of Pop-Tarts of the cinnamon-roll variety, appropriately called the Sticky Cinna Munchies, as well as about 30 other snacks.

Other features at the store include computers, Pop-Tarts themed merchandise, and a Varietizer. The computers give visitors access to social media sites, a Memory-styled game with pastry icons, and, of course, Pop-Tarts World! Merchandise ranges from cups and mugs, to shopping totes and lunch bags, all the way to customizable tee-shirts. And what is the Varietizer, you ask? Why, it’s a custom-built vending machine for selecting your favorites-only-variety pack, of course! This machine allows customers to choose any six two-packs out of the 23 regular Pop-Tarts flavors for a personalized box of delicious toaster pastries.

At this specialty shop, not only can one enjoy frosted pastries, but each hour, the visitors get frosted, as well! At least that is how an operator working on the project described the hourly light show to The New York Times. The show starts with a red and a white light, quickly followed by “pulses of light, “all different colors to mimic the sprinkles,” he said, “then another really bright light” to evoke wrapping the tarts in foil.”

Unfortunately for those of us who won’t be venturing to Times Square this fall, Pop-Tarts World will only run through January, “at which point executives will decide whether a store all about toaster pastries makes long-term sense,” says The New York Times.

Personally, I think this venture makes perfect sense. I only wish that this store would join forces with Cereality, the cereal bar and cafe mentioned in my Eat, Sleep, Tumblr post. The two could form the ultimate breakfast bar!

Eat, Sleep, Tumblr

Julia Roberts’ new movie, Eat Pray Love, based on Elizabeth Gilbert’s memoir by the same name, follows the protagonist as she embarks on a journey of self-discovery. Her “journey of self-discovery,” for whatever reason, involves traveling the world and eating lots of food every where she goes. In reaction to this, I composed a list of places I’d like to journey to for a bite to eat:

  • Chicago's Cafe Mustache. A coffee shop in Logan Square that hosts music and art, and.. well.. Has a frickin’ sweet name. Enough said.
  • Good Burger! I grew up watching the classic All That! sketch -turned Kenan & Kel movie, only to find in the past year that there are six Good Burger locations in New York City. I don’t even really care what the burgers taste like, I just have to get one if, or when rather, I go to NYC.
  • Portland, Oregon’s VooDoo Doughnut. This unique boutique has cooked up such original confections as the Marshall Matters doughnut, a cake doughnut with white frosting and mini M&M’s, the Bacon Maple Bar, which is exactly what it sounds like, and the most creative of all: the VooDoo Doll, which is a raspberry jelly-filled, chocolate frosting-covered, ghost-shaped doughnut with a pretzel stake through it’s raspberry-flavored heart!
  • Munchies 420 Cafe in Sarasota, Florida. Open from 4:20 PM to 4:20 AM, this cafe clearly has a specific clientele in mind. Their menu includes twelve “Fat Sandwiches” and a “Fire in Your Hole” wings challenge (as seen on the Travel Channel’s Man v. Food).
  • Cereality is like a child’s dream cafe. This cereal bar is located inside Cold Stone Creamery's in Florida, Minnesota, and West Virginia, as well as Ohio and Texas. As the name, Cereality, suggests, the menu consists solely of cold and hot cereal and parfaits. The one menu item that really caught my eye: Devil Made Me Do It -a sinful mix of Coco Puffs, Lucky Charms, malt balls and chocolate syrup. Mm.

These were just the first ones that came to mind. Hope they made you hungry(:

"Some things should be left a secret,  and this is one of them."
The above comment was made about this post card on Post Secret. Though the secret itself is a little disturbing, I am also bothered that a person would say that about another person’s secret. I think the entire reason this blog exists is for dark secrets like this one. Real secrets that one would truly fear telling. To some people, saying that they still like to pretend they are mermaids when they go swimming is a secret. Sure. But to someone else, that is just silly and maybe not even worth telling. Who are we to judge another person’s secret, anyway?
What really struck me was the comment made after, from a recent high school graduate. As a senior project, each student was to make their own PostSecret to be collected in a book. There was one secret that was left out of the book, considered to be inappropriate. It was this student’s secret.
In my opinion, it was completely wrong to leave out any of the student’s secrets. I feel for this student, and I hope that they recreate the secret and send it in to Post Secret. I agree with this student, that it takes courage to put a secret on paper. Especially one that is dark, and possibly considered inappropriate.

"These are secrets we’re sharing.  If  they weren’t disturbing, or embarrassing, or inappropriate, we wouldn’t  hide them.  It’s nice to read heartwarming, silly, or even sad secrets,  but it’s the gut-wrenching, tear-jerking,  I-have-to-do-something-about-this ones that remind me why PostSecret is  here."

I couldn’t have said it better.
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As much as I hate to admit it, the clothes Miley Cyrus designs for Wal-Mart are damn cute. I tried on one of these rompers the other day at the store, but in blue. It fits well, very flattering, and it would be very comfortable to wear. There was just one problem - it buttoned up the back. All the way up. I am a flexible person, I can reach every spot on my back, but I still can’t button up a top from behind! I was disappointed, especially since it was on sale for five bucks, but I couldn’t buy it. It would be impractical.
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ModCloth sells this "Geeky Dreamboats" reference guide and I adore it! The description on the website likes it to a silly Teen Beat magazine,  and I can see why. It gives pictures and profiles of nerdy Hollywood guys and even rates them on a “geekboat meter.” I know it’s totally cheesy, but it’s so damn cute!
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