Thursday, December 26, 2013

my 2014 to-do list

four years ago, i decided that resolutions pretty much suck, and that it's so much more satisfying -- and tangible -- to check the items off as you go through the year. an annual "things to do" list was born! after coming up with 100 things for 2011 and 2012, i pared it down to 50 for 2013 and got even more focused this year. going for quality over quantity, and repeating some that i still haven't accomplished (#3, #27, #39). what do you want to tick off of your list in 2014?

1. purchase a home
2. visit new orleans
3. be in a music video
4. take a cooking class
5. swim in an infinity pool
6. finish my book proposal
7. learn enough french to get around
8. use a terrible pick-up line on a random guy
9. visit somewhere that's haunted
10. color my hair
11. get business cards
12. dine at 5  restaurants on the eater boston 38
13. make a collage
14. watch a whole TV series that i've never seen before
15. take the jeopardy online test
16. try air bnb
17. get something that i wrote published on mcsweeney's
18. go to a state fair
19. do volunteer work
20. visit martha's vineyard
21. drink a "green smoothie" :(
22. overcome my eyelash-curling phobia
23. write to a celebrity and receive a response (online or via snail mail)
24. see a (non-musical) play
25. say "yes" to something i want to say "no" to at first
26. make my own sushi
27. crash a wedding
28. buy a plant for my apartment (and don't kill it)
29. participate in a scavenger hunt
30. reconnect with an old friend or acquaintance
31. teach myself a dance routine via youtube tutorial
32. go sailing (or, at least, on a sailboat)
33. pack a picnic lunch and eat it on boston common
34. win at pub trivia
35. go to an ice bar
36. make my own pizza
37. win money from a slot machine or scratch ticket
38. send christmas cards
39. go out to dinner by myself
40. watch 5 movies on the IMDB top 250 that i've never seen before

Saturday, December 14, 2013

my top 10 songs of 2013!

i started this tradition last year since my attention span is usually too short to deal with full albums unless they're completely amazing. what were your favorites from 2013?

p.s. you can enjoy all of these in playlist form right here.

honorable mention: wavves - "sail to the sun," driver friendly - "ghosts," smallpools - "mason jar," walk the moon - "tête-à-tête""

10. macklemore & ryan lewis f/ ray dalton - "can't hold us"

so this song was technically released all the way back in 2011, but let's be real -- were any of you cool enough to hear it back then? me neither. plus, it was re-released this year, so i'm counting it. i know everyone hates it now, but the first 20 or so times i listened to it were magic. ALRIGHT, OKAY!

9. parquet courts - "stoned & starving"

so early '90s/pavement-ish and i love it. simple. catchy. undeniably awesome bare-bones rock 'n roll.

8. fitz & the tantrums - "the walker"

every year-end song list has to have a tune that includes whistling, right? this one was in heavy rotation for me over the summer. it's just a ton of fun and has a great retro vibe. and so. much. soul!

7. the neighbourhood - "sweater weather"

proof that a song can be really hot without being vulgar. i mean, i appreciate the vulgarity too, don't get me wrong, but this is the most subtly sexy song i've heard in a long time. plus, it's the only one i know of that gives a shoutout to high-waisted shorts, aka my favorite item of clothing.

6. bass drum of death - "way out"

i'd been jamming out to BDOD's second album since he released it this past june, but actually didn't get into this song until i saw him perform it live a few months ago. kind of grungy, kind of psychedelic, kind of haunting, and totally delicious to my ears.

5. new politics - "harlem"

oh, this song deserved so much more than a taco bell commercial. i kept waiting for it to blow up and it just ... kind of never did. not really sure why, because you can't help but want to dance when that chorus hits.

4. queens of the stone age - "i sat by the ocean"

i'mma let you in on a secret. if you want me to do anything or go anywhere, just have josh homme sing the request to me. sigh. it's no "how to handle a rope," but it's a killer track nonetheless.

3. one direction - "kiss you"

1D keeps sneaking onto my list every year. how did they make it into the top five?! whatever, it's not my fault that this song is basically the perfect pop nugget and sounds like a choir of angels serenading you on a mountain made of gumdrops and skittles.

2. walk off the earth - "red hands"

basically just in love with WOTE and everything they do. from the lady of the band, sarah, helping my friend and i get into their sold-out show last year, to lead singer gianni complimenting my blog post about said show, these guys are not only super-talented, they're super-sweet, too. of course, there's also the incredible one-take video for this song that still blows my mind.

1. kurt vile - "never run away"

I. LOVE. THIS. SONG. there really wasn't any hesitation about choosing this as my #1 when making this list, and my spotify year-end thing confirmed that, in fact, mr. vile was my most-listened-to artist. from the yearning chorus to the "hey hey hey hey hey hey maaaan" and lush instrumental, it's basically perfect. he made a legit video for it, but i much prefer this one due to his intense leg-crossing, awkward air guitar motions, and adoooorable daughter.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

death to the slow fade!

gather 'round, kids! today, we're going to talk about some awful phenomena that seem to pervade today's dating culture: "ghosting" and its evil, heinous twin, the "slow fade."

first, let's look at what we're dealing with here. urban dictionary defines "ghosting" as the act of suddenly ceasing all communication with someone the subject is dating, but no longer wishes to date. while the "slow fade" is when someone is lacking in readiness, or willingness to accept a budding relationship and therefore institutes this passive aggressive method of disappearing from a relationship altogether over an extended period of time.

i think it's important to note that in cases where you go on one date with someone and neither of you reach out, that's not ghosting. neither is a hookup where you both agree that this is just a solitary occurrence. but after you've been out a couple times (or have been dating for weeks or months) and CERTAINLY after you've acquired carnal knowledge of this person, vanishing into the night just makes you look like a douchecanoe. really, it does. come onnnn, bro.

(this one goes out to the ghosted gals out there.)

yes, i've been ghosted, and yes, i've been slow-faded. make no mistake, both are absolutely despicable behaviors, and can make even the most confident girl go completely britney-in-2007 cray-cray and want to throw her phone into the ocean. it's really not pretty, but slow-fading is truly the worst of the worst. instead of being ignored completely, you get occasional, teeny-tiny breadcrumbs from the other person that make you feel like you could be overreacting. "maybe they really are just busy!" you think. "i mean, they DID say they wanted to get together, but we didn't talk about specifics ... maybe i'll hear from him tonight!" you think. and then, you snap out of it and your rational brain goes "bitch, get real! he hasn't even liked any of your instagram photos in 3 weeks."

i don't care where you're from, or how you were raised. in no universe should it be acceptable to let another human being -- one you have presumably spent an enjoyable period of time with AND have probably seen nekkid -- just disappear from view, like a TV show you got sick of watching and decided to abandon halfway through the season. grow a pair, put on your big boy pants, and just holla at yo' girl to let her know that you don't wanna holla at her no more, okay? you don't even have to call! and i'm guessing you're probably not the "phone call type" if you're pulling these shenanigans to begin with. regardless, a simple text that says "hey, not feeling this anymore, but i hope you find someone great" will do. you don't have to explain why. and if the other party presses, just make something up if you don't want to get into it. i guarantee that a white lie will go over much better than silence ... or a lame text response that comes a week later. why even bother, y'know? 

while reading up on this stuff on the interwebs (LOTS of interesting articles -- every word of this was my life at one point), i also came across a concept called passionate detachment. yeah, it was invented by one of those so-called dating coaches, but i can't deny that it's a great idea, and a simple one. "you are passionately open to all dating possibilities, but you’re not attached to any outcome. you don’t expect anything of your partner, and you allow your relationship to unfold naturally and at its own pace, without pushing any kind of agenda." i like the sound of that, especially when a dude could so easily disappear at a moment's notice. easier said than done, though, right?

so, while being all passionately detached, i will continue to call out the ghosts and slow faders of the world for their offenses and kindly let them know that they're being dicks. what happens beyond that, i can't control. it's probably too presumptuous to think that i've saved their next not-so-lucky lady from the agony of queasy feelings, overanalyzing, and self-doubt.

but hey, a girl can dream!