THINGS I LOVED / HATED THIS WEEK #97

LOVE:

Lansbury Reactions Twitter [@LansburyReact]:

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In a little over a month, I’ll be in Washington DC STALKING ANGELA LANSBURY. I mean, I’ll be looking at all the sights and hopefully going on a tour of the White House. I’m totally not going to stalk Angela. That’s what crazy people do… As you know, because I’ve told you at least once per month, Angela is one of my favorite actresses of all time. I’ve watched her since I was born and I’m going through a renaissance of my love because of Murder, She Wrote. It’s a wonderful time in my life. I recently found the @LansburyReact account on Twitter and I chortled for a good half hour on the treadmill. It’s the epitome of perfection. Every day, some clever person makes a GIF of Angela and posts it with a sassy comment. My favorite has to be this one:

Follow the account immediately, readers, your existence will be blessed.

The Grammys:

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I don’t often watch award shows. I just wait for the Fashion Police recap of the fashion, because fashion is the most important thing. I like music, though, and Beyoncé was performing, so I tuned in this year, and I’m ever so glad I did. It was pretty terrible most of the time, but I still had the best time watching and live tweeting. Watching Madonna walk the red carpet like Evita who had gone into the witness protection organization and emerged disguised as a fashionable matador was fantastic! Her performance in the show was a delight. She dances to her song just like me! No shade. Hozier and Annie Lennox were a treasure. I have a painful confession, though…I enjoyed Kanye’s song. I have never said something like that, but there it is. I don’t even know who I am anymore. I was absolutely outraged twice, though. First, when Miley lost for “BANGERZ.” How dare the Grammy voters do this? Her album is a lyrical and musical masterpiece that will be part of our culture forever. Then, the greatest scandal of all time was when Beyoncé lost to Beck for best album. Who is Beck? What fool wouldn’t have picked Beyoncé, queen of creation and our nation. Did you see how the audience reacted to her presence? She is a deity. I was just pissed that Kanye pretended to be joking when he went on stage. IF AMERICA DESERVED A KANYE RANT, IT WAS THEN. Poor, Beyoncé. Anyway, it was fun. I made macarons while watching.

MegaMan Vitamins:

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For a while, I have been thinking about vitamins. I haven’t ever taken them, though, so it wasn’t part of my life. I think I took those Flintstones vitamins as a child, but I don’t have many memories of my childhood. I decided to order some, though, to see if getting a recommended dosage of nutrients and whatnot would help me feel better. I’ve been taking them for a week or so now and I’ve noticed quite an uptake in my energy levels. I don’t know if I should give all the credit to the pills, as I’m always exhausted, but now I’m always on the verge of being turnt up. It’s very strange. I’m intrigued to see if this keeps going. Maybe I should have started taking vitamins a decade ago? I could have made something of myself! I’d recommend these ones, or try one out of your choosing.

Spaghetti Squash:

Haven't tasted it yet, but it actually looks like spaghetti, and I'm really disturbed.

A post shared by Benjamin Phillips (@bdphillips) on

 

Even though I’ve long known about spaghetti squash, I have never really had any inclination to cook it or eat it. The thought frightened me. More than that, really; I find the entire concept of a squash being substituted for an Italian dish unnerving. I bought one a few weeks ago, and it has been sitting on my counter, glaring at me ever since. Yesterday afternoon I couldn’t bear to look at it for another day, so I tossed it in the oven as Martha suggested. An hour and a half later, I was scraping out strands of what looked alarmingly like pasta. I stared at it with disdain. I shrugged and made a quick pasta sauce, tossed it with the squash strands and baked it under a mound of fresh mozzarella. When it was finished, I sat it on the table and stared at it for awhile with more disdain. I shrugged and took a bite. It tasted like spaghetti. I was disturbed. Perhaps it was a bit too crunchy and could have been cooked for a bit longer, but it was not offensive. Besides that, my tomato sauce was delicious. I’d eat it again. That fact makes me uncomfortable, too.

Madonna’s New Music:

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People are all judging Madonna again, like they always do, because of her appearance on the red carpet. I thought she was, of course, fabulous. Madonna can do no wrong in my mind. After her glorious cinematic role as Evita Perón, I have fallen heads over heels in love with her. Besides, Ray of Light is perhaps the most stunning album ever made in the modern era. Don’t believe me? Get on Spotify! The night of the Grammys, three new songs from her album, Rebel Heart, were released and I enjoyed them tremendously while getting ready this morning. I’d been curious about the one titled “Joan of Arc” for some time, and I was not disappointed. It’s a pleading ballad about bullying. Quite beautiful. “Iconic” is a great song to do planks to and I have been planking through the entirety of it whilst lipsynching. I’m an accomplished lipsyncher. All three songs are lovely and if you haven’t preordered the album yet, go do it now. I’ll wait… Good job!

16-Hour Fast:

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I have an unhealthy addiction to fad diets. I think they’re all ridiculous, but they never fail to lure me in. As I do ever more research into fitness, which is one of my odd interests that I can’t explain away, I find myself more intrigued by diets that don’t have anything to do with the food you consume. I was big into the FEAST DIET the other week. In this one, you only eat one time per day, but you can eat as much as you possibly want. I thought that sounded fabulous, but it didn’t really work out for me. I moved on to the 16-Hour Fast, which is similar, but you can eat for an eight hour period each day. This really works for me. My timer begins at 12:30, when I go to lunch, and wraps up at 8:30, just as I’m finishing dinner. It’s really no different from what I used to do, but it cuts into my beloved late night gorging. So far, I have noticed some truly excellent results, and I recommend it to you all.

Israel Rank:

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I have had this book on my iPad since March of last year. As you well know, I am one of the world’s finest procrastinators. Israel Rank is a novel from 1907 that inspired the uproariously funny A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, which won a Tony for the best musical. I don’t think I’ve ever had a finer time in the theater. The book languished whilst I read 400 different tomes on Egyptian history. I finally got started this week when I made a determined effort to read more fiction, and I could not be happier. I know it’s wrong to nod in agreement and perfectly understand a murderer…well, a serial killer…but Israel gets me. He hasn’t started killing people, yet, but the descriptions of his childhood are wonderful and I have been chortling heartily. He talks of his fine features and how he is offended when people don’t call him handsome. He brags about his musical gifts. He makes witty remarks on the regular. He avoids youths even though he is one! He’s a social climber and absolutely fabulous, and I want them to remake a movie (albeit one without so much antisemitism) and let Hollywood cast me as the lead — I’ll be with you in July! Here is a passage I really enjoyed:

He talked to me of a youth of application, a middle age of strenuous endeavor for a living wage, and an old age of decent competence. The prospect appalled me. It sounded inexpressibly gray. I gravitated towards wealth and luxury as the needle to a magnet.

You can download it for free on Google Books. It’s fantastic.

Manhattan Murder Mystery:

After watching Magic in the Moonlight last week, I decided to watch more of Woody Allen’s oeuvre and chose Manhattan Murder Mystery to start my marathon. I was hooked from the start by the witty writing, the story, and the phenomenal cast! It’s all about Carol and Larry and their boring marriage and how their lives change when they meet their next-door neighbor. When the wife of their new acquaintance dies suddenly, Carol becomes suspicious and begins hunting for clues. As a passionate amateur detective, this endeared her tremendously to me. I won’t give any of it away. It’s not surprising and it’s not original, but it’s so much fun. And, there is this amazing quote that I really related to, “Let’s go home and nap and then call the police and let them take care of it.” Truly a wonderfully cozy picture. See it today!

HATE:

Odd Recurrent Appearance of My Grandmother In Dreams:

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In my years, I have spent a solid chunk of my free time reading about the paranormal. I think it’s an endlessly fascinating topic and one of my favorite things to ponder is astral travel. I think it’s real even if I can’t do it myself. You always read accounts of people being with their loved ones who passed away in dreams, but nothing like that has ever happened to me until very recently. For the past two nights, I have had dreams that are about my grandmother who died last year. In the first one, we were in her house and she was going on and on about feeling suffocated. She was very unhappy and she was detailing all the reasons that she felt this way. I don’t remember a lot of this, but I woke up feeling uneasy. The next night she was in my dreams agin, but this time it was in a different setting altogether. At first we were surrounded by people in what seemed to be a very wide bus. She was telling me stories of an affair she had and there was something terribly sad about Honolulu. People on the bus were crying and I was taking furious notes. The bus stopped inside a building that was covered with buttons. The walls were just filled with them. Each of them was to a different room in the building and we went to a restaurant. Our seat was in the center of a large room with a wall of glass that looked out onto the Mediterranean. We were high up in the hills around Villefranche-sur-mer and the village was far below. We talked and talked and it was very quiet and very peaceful. I woke up feeling much better because of that dream. I wonder what it all means? I feel like I missed something, some clue or answer.

Waiting For My Bun:

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This morning, I held my Chanel ribbon in hand and prayed fervently to Beyoncé to give me the strength to carry on my hair growing mission. You might laugh, but that actually happened. My hair is now longer than it has been since 2007 when I was in high school and had no idea how to dress, do my hair, or eat properly. Things have changed considerably since then. If only I had known the simple elegance of a bun in those days! No use lamenting on the past, I suppose, though it is one of my favorite hobbies. I will think about the future instead — by July, when I hop off the plane at LAX with my dream and my cardigan, I should have enough hair to pull off an acceptable bun. If hair truly grows at a rate of a half inch per month, than I should have 2.5 more inches of hair and look like Harry Styles’s stunt double. What a time I’ll have! Anyway, I’m very impatient for some more hair, because mine has currently reached yet another awkward stage where nothing I do looks acceptable to me. I feel next week will involve a lot of headbands. #longhairdontcare

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