Conspiracy Theory: Degrassi is taking over the world

So I’m not going to lie. Lying gets you nowhere. I have watched Degrassi before. Not just like one episode or two, but like a million. I think it was in college or maybe even grad school that I got addicted to watch Degrassi on The N. If you don’t know what Degrassi is, it’s a TV show (originally from the 80s, but revamped for this generation) that’s from Canadaland about high school kids and all the problems they face. I don’t remember how I got into watching this, but it just sucked me in. It was a little high school soap with actually teenagers playing teenagers (Sorry Ben McKenzie, I’m never going to buy you as a 17 year old).

I haven’t watched it much in recent years, but every once and a while I’ll catch an episode on some channel. However, this doesn’t stop me from seeing the actors from the show because I am convinced that Degrassi is slowly (but surely) taking over the world. Whether it’s movies, music, of TV, I feel like I see them everywhere. It’s like Canada is plotting to take over the world. Yeah, we get you’re all neutral and shit, with happy people and pretty landscape, but secretly, you’re totally plotting to take over the world one Degrassi member at a time.

TV: Not only is Degrassi making its way to main stream networkd TV via Saturday morning programming, but they’ve shoved Shenae Grimes down our throat on 90210. I’ve actually started to like 90210 this year since Rebecca Sinclair took it over, but Shenae Grimes is the least likeable character. I even like her new boyfriend Jasper (aka Randal from Alex McNall’s thesis film in grad school, woot woot!). So dear Shenae, please go back to Canada and back to playing Darcy on Degrassi. Yeah, you were crazy on that show too, but at least you were more likeable.

Music: Oh Drake. Drake, Drake, Drake, Drake…also known as Aubrey Graham aka Jimmy from Degrassi. Never in a million years did I think you would become this huge hip-hop star after hooking up with pretty much every girl on Degrassi, winding up in a wheelchair after that school shooting, and then making the most out of your life. You were the best on the show, and no offense, I’m not a big fan of your music. I’m sure the wheelchair was annoying after a while, but maybe you can go back to Degrassi and start a little club with Kevin McHale from Glee.

Movies: Okay, I feel like if you make a movie in Canadaland, you are obligate to put an actor from Degrassi in your movie. It has to be some sort of clause in a contract when production companies head north for production. Hey New Moon, did you have anyone from Degrassi? If not, clearly you failed. When my company made Juno, we had Daniel Clark aka Degrassi’s resident bad-ass, Sean Cameron. I loved Sean, even when he got into trouble all the time. Plus, I love him in Juno, so I’m okay with this. Also, if any of you have seen Charlie Bartlett with the wonderful Anton Yelchin (love that kid!) they feature, not one, not two, not three, but FOUR Degrassi cast members? Was there a 4 for 1 special going on, Charlie Bartlett producers? Lauren Collins, Jake Epstein, Ishan Dave, AND Aubrey Graham all make an appearance in the film. Seriously guys? Seriously? Please tell me you all just wanted to work with Anton Yelchin and Robert Downey Jr. and you weren’t trying to take over the world.

So what’s the deal, Canada? Are you really trying to take over the world via Degrassi cast members or are these kids just crazy ass talented? I know you like to sit up there and be quiet most of the time, but I know you’re more of a super power than to resort to shoving actors/musicians down our throat. Come to think of it, maybe you are doing that…and not just with Degrassi members. Ryan Reynolds, Rachel McAdams, Shania Twain, Jim Carrey, Alanis Morrisette, Donald Sutherland, Michael J. Fox, Neil Young, Ryan Gosling, Mike Meyers, and Alex Trebek. They’re taking over, one Jeopardy question at a time.


Preparing for battle – New Moon style

Hi, my name is Alexis and I am a Twilight fan. If only there was a support group to say hi back. They really do need to start meetings for people like me.

So, since it’s been revealed that I’m a (hardcore) Twilight fan, I must dedicate this post to the fact that I, along with two of my best friends Jen and Gabby, are preparing for battle. In a week and two days, we will be seeing New Moon for the first time. Breaking in to Summit down the street would have just taken too much planning and therefore, we are doing the next best thing. We are going to an advance screening at the Arclight next Thursday night.

I say battle because that’s honestly what it is. When you’re 26 years old and a fan of Twilight, you find yourself ridiculously outnumbered by 16 year olds that can barely drive their mom’s minivan to Hot Topic to buy a ‘Team Edward’ shirt. So in preparation to deal with the onslaught of screaming fans at the movies and the fact that I will probably knock someone down in line for the bathroom because that trash talked RPatz, here are the exercises we are putting ourselves through to be in top Twilight fan form coming next Thursday night.

1. Re-read Twilight AND New Moon
So Gabby has Jen and I beat on this one, as she has re-read both books and is almost done re-reading Eclipse. I have made it through Twilight and if I hunker down this weekend, I may be able to get through New Moon by next Thursday. Sorry, I actually do have a life outside of Twilight. Jen hasn’t re-read either. Fail, Jen.
Re-read Battle Grades – Gabby: A; Alexis: B-; Jen: F

2. Re-watch Twilight

Art just bought a new Plasma and blu-ray player so there will definitely be a viewing this weekend of Twilight where we will make sarcastic commentary and make fun of KStew when the HD reveals her pores.
Re-Watch Grades- All: A (cause we’re totally doing this)

3. Buy New Moon paraphernalia
Sure, we didn’t venture down to Hollywood and Highland on Friday night for the cast tour, but that doesn’t mean we are ashamed to own anything. Gabby is showing her Tay Tay love by getting a I HEART WEREWOLVES shirt. Jen and I at one point did purchase a Pocket Edward for our cubicle, but he was stolen by an intern who probably took him because I was the mean assistant who always told them to keep the chatter down. We still hold out hope he will resurface one day.
New Moon paraphernalia – Gabby: B+; Alexis & Jen: B

4. Watching endless press junket interviews and reading new articles

Gabby once again takes the cake on this, as I came home last week to discover that she has Tivo’d Access Hollywood to watch the interviews and cringe with second hand embarrassment while the host asked horrible questions. I watched some over the weekend and also salivated over the new Rob photos from Vanity Fair and Harper’s Bazaar. I like to pretend that KStew wasn’t in the Harper’s Bazaar photo shoot. Jen was also good as well, watching some of the interviews too and bugging me over and over again to send her the Harper’s Bazaar article to she could read it. Snoozefest.
Press Junket Interviews & Magazine Grade – Gabby: A-; Alexis: B; Jen: B-

5. Freaking out in the car every time we see a New Moon billboard or see a New Moon commercial
Jen definitely failed in this category. She doesn’t get excited by seeing a billboard trailer, nor does she watch the commercials when they are on TV. She says she watched them the first time she saw one, but not anymore. I personally get excited when I see a billboard, even if it’s just a little. Same with the TV ads. I may be fast forwarding through the commercials during Glee and I will stop, rewind and watch if a New Moon commercial goes by. I also thoroughly appreciate the WhatEdwardDrives Volvo commercials, if only for the fact that they are hand down hilarious. I can only imagine there are a million 16 year old girls now asking for a Volvo as their first car simply because it’s what Edward Cullen drives. Gabby also has a fan girl moment when we see a billboard or commercial as well.
Billboard & Commercial freakout Grade – Gabby: B; Alexis: B+; Jen: D

Overall Battle Grades

Gabby – A: Gabby will definitely survive the onslaught of 16 years olds and will beat them in a foot race if Taylor Lautner is spotter outside the Cineramadome come November 20th. She’s feisty and fearless and the most prepared out of all of us.

Alexis – B+: My dedication to any and all things Twilight makes me confident that I could out elbow any 16 year old if Rob is spotted, but if it’s KStew that’s on the street, she can fend for herself while I sit back and watch her stutter/blink rapidly/shake head like she’s having a seizure.

Jen – C: Jen’s cool and calm collected nature probably means that she’d get trampled by the hordes of teenage girls, but her nonchalantness makes her the most awesome and she would probably be standing far far away from the violence in the first place. She thinks that this will one day translate to her meeting Rob in person.

Or we all could just stand back and watch the mobs form and silently mock and sarcastically judge like we always do. We’d all definitely get an A at doing that.
Either way…game on!

photo source

Underdressed or Overdressed?

I’ve come to the conclusion that everyone in Los Angeles NEVER dresses weather appropriate. Grace Kelly always dressed weather appropriate. Whether she was on the boat heading to Monaco for her wedding, or in Jamaica after winning her Oscar, or in Switzerland on vacation after she was married. How could she not? She was Grace Kelly. Even if it wasn’t weather appropriate, she made it weather appropriate because she was Grace Kelly.

I will be the first to admit though, that I am one of these people that doesn’t dress weather appropriate. I ALWAYS overdress for the weather. Maybe this is because I am always cold, but I’m pretty positive I look like an idiot sometimes because of this.

Today, I woke up this morning and had no idea what i was going to wear to work. Jeans, okay, those are a given. Ballet flats, another given. But what else to wear? Hmm, such a dilemma. I ended up picking a long white sleeve shirt, a black down hooded jacket, an a lavender jersey scarf. I walked into work this morning and the first thing one of my co-workers said to me was “Damn, bundled up much?” If I was still living in Chicago, or even home in Santa Rosa, this outfit may have been acceptable, but it’s 65 degrees outside today. I looked like I was about to go skiing, not sitting a mile from the beach.

Other wonderful weather inappropriate fashion on my part: wearing flip flops in Chicago in December, wearing a hooded sweatshirt outside in Chicago during the middle of a blizzard, wearing my winter coat in Los Angeles in September, wearing short sleeves after it gets dark in LA. Hey, this is technically a desert. It gets cold!

I’m not the only one who does this though. Living in Los Angeles, I’m privy to people who wear the most weather inappropriate stuff, both during winter and the summer. Below are some of my favorite weather inappropriate Los Angeles fashions.

UGG boots in the summer

GREAT idea. Clearly it was warm enough to wear shorts, but apparently your body doesn’t regular temperature well and your feet were freezing. Nothing says summer fun more than a pair of furry boots.

Scarves in the summer

This is probably the one I’m most okay with as I think it’s fine to rock a scarf whenever, but some people think it’s crazy. I think it’s just fashionable.

Flip Flops in the rain

Really? Really? I hate getting water in my shoes when they are closed toed. I can’t imagine people who think wearing flip flops while it rains is a genius and also comfortable idea.

As much as I hate on these three, I’ll be the first to admit, I’ve done every single of one of them. Sometimes you just can’t argue with fashion. Sometimes it’s what keep you warm or cool; sometimes it’s just about looking cool. Grace Kelly wouldn’t argue with looking cool.

Take-out terrors

I’ve come to the conclusion that ordering at a new take out place is one of the most stressful experiences. When our office moved to Santa Monica, we had to stake out new lunch places. No more egg salad sandwiches from Cafe Alexander or Salmon salads from Cafe Flore. Now I have multiple more options to choose from, all of which seem to have massive menus that leave me perplexed and stressed when trying to order lunch.

Case in point:

Jen and I walked to the Water Garden today because Jen wanted a salad from Mrs. Winston’s. While everyone raves about this self serve salad & sandwich place, I’m not really a fan. Instead, I chose to head next door to Trimana, which I have only been to once before. I walked in and not only are there hand down 20 people crowded in the small shop, all in various stages or ordering or waiting, but their menu is also MASSIVE. With the pressure on and the servers continually asking “Next!” to the sea of people all staring up at the massive food selection, the panic set it. What the hell do I want for lunch?

Do I want the tuna melt? No, I had that last time and I don’t want to get stuck in my ways. Do I just want soup? It is cold outside, soup could be good. Oh, but it’s not filling enough. What about a burger? Nah, too heavy. Oh look, they have mac and cheese as their featured side today. I love mac and cheese. Mental note to get anything that comes with that. What about a salad? Oh wait, it doesn’t come with mac and cheese. Club sandwich? No. Insert someone elbowing me aside so they can look at the menu. Fuck, I need to figure it out. Ok, slowly start walking up to the register like you know what you want but actually don’t. Keep looking at the menu. Oh turkey Parmesan sandwich could be good. I wonder if I could get that with the mac and cheese. Oh wait, they have chicken pot pie SOUP. What the hell is that and why the hell does it sound delicious? Oh, they have a Philly Cheeseteak sandwich. I love those things. Fuck, fuck, fuck. The server is staring at me like I’m crazy. Oh crunch time, hurry up. Ok fine, I’ll have the turkey Parmesan sandwich, but can I get it with mac and cheese as the side. Silence. Oh shit, am I not allowed to do that? I’ll pay extra! That stuff looks amazing. Oh no wait, it’s allowed. Ok, good. Hand credit card over, take drink cup, and breathe a sigh of relief. Crisis averted.

Now…to wait in the claustrophobic line to get my soda. Wait, what kind of soda do I want? Or do I want tea? Or juice? Oh god, here we go again.

I really should just eat the lunch I bring every day.

Emotionally drained and it’s only Tuesday

This past week has been interesting and stressful, all of which seem to culminate this afternoon. While I stressed cried at my desk over one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make, I talked to anybody I could about my dilemma. I talked to Jen, Britt, Jennie, Ashley, and even called my mom. Yes, I’m almost 26 years old and sometimes I still need to call my mom for advice.

While I won’t go into the detail of the drama, I’ve finally made my decision and I’m hoping that it was for the best. When it came down to it, the cons out weighed the pros. I like to think that everything happens for a reason and there is a reason behind the madness, a reason behind that prompted me to make this decision, a reason why I was forced to make it to begin with, and a reason why it will lead me to something better. I did what I had to do, and sometimes, you can’t always please everyone. I’m sure even Grace Kelly couldn’t please everyone.

It’s funny to think how beautiful and idyllic something can look on the outside, but on the inside… “What’s a Monet?” “It’s like a painting, see? From far away, it’s OK, but up close, it’s a big old mess.”

There is always a secret side to everything that seems perfect. Even Grace Kelly.

Now, to cheer myself up, I’m going to go stare at the Harper’s Bazaar Rob & KStew photos and Vanity Fair Rob pictures. I’m going to pretend that KStew fell off the motorcycle .5 seconds after this picture was taken. Whoops…too bad.

(photo source)

I sorta fused Flashdance with MC Hammer shit

Art had this genius (though crazy at the time) idea to put a TV in our kitchen. At first, Gabby and I thought he was a little nuts, but now, it’s the best idea ever as I can cook dinner AND watch TV at the same time.

I don’t put too much pressure on myself though, as if it’s really something I need to pay attention to, I’ll wait till I’m done cooking to watch. This of course leads me to watch mindless television while I’m in the kitchen. RR/RW challenges, Say Yes To The Dress, old movies on HBO.

The other night, I was making dinner and I caught the last 15 minutes of Encino Man. Shoosh! Totally genius at the time, still hipster genius now. At the end of the movie Link does that whole dance sequence at the prom with Dave and Robin and it got me thinking about all the great high school group dance sequences in movies. In case you need to re-educate yourself on these cinematic masterpieces, I’ve included some below for your viewing pleasure.

Can’t Buy Me Love – The African Anteater Ritual

Patrick Dempsey, I love you! Seth Green when he was like 12? So good! I rented this movie so much as a kid that I finally bought it a few years ago.

She’s All That – Fatboy Slim Prom Sequence

Hey Usher, do you really need to give us the play by play of the dancing? If anything, you should be giving the play by play of the ridiculously dated hair and clothing. Yay 90s! Though someone remind me…we’re spikes ever in style on a guy?

Encino Man – The “Encino Man” Dance

Oh Sean Astin, I liked you so much better when you were trekking across middle earth, trying to play football for Notre Dame, or being a Goonie. I’ll give you a free pass for doing this movie, even though it’s kinda totally genius and amazing in the way that Bio-Dome was. How did all these student pick up on this dance so quickly though? And Robin…let’s discuss that dress.

Teen Wolf – The Teen Wolf Dance

Ok, the synchronized clapping and snapping gives it a total West Side Story feel like there is going to be a rumble. I love how the crowd part when he comes in and he’s the coolest guy ever. Sorry, but if a freaking half wolf-half human person showed up at my high school dance, you better as hell believe I am running for the hills…unless it’s Jacob Black and he’s coming with the whole Twilight wolfpack.

Footloose – Final Dance Sequence

You are lying your ass off if you don’t start moving when you hear this song. It’s freakin’ Kenny Loggins! Kenny Loggin + Kevin Bacon = amazingness. I loved this movie growing up, still do. It looks like the coolest high school dance ever, even though they are in a warehouse. Who cares? They are rocking the shit out of it! Willard finally learns to dance, you see SJP’s real hair color, Kevin Bacon looks sexy in a maroon suit, and everyone is happy in the end.

I know there are many more out there, but these are some of the best (and most random). Of course, if you expand beyond the high school group dance sequence genre, there are even more amazing non high school related dance sequences that are even more fantastic. I leave with one of them…probably one of my favorites of all time. Please try to enjoy the second hand embarrassment as much as possible. I know I do.

Grace Kelly & Casseroles

I bet Grace Kelly made casseroles. Sure, she became a princess, but deep down, she was still a girl from Pennsylvania. She always liked to do things for herself and her kids – wrap Christmas presents, dress her kids, read books to them. So what’s stopping her from making a casserole? I bet she made one hell of a casserole.

I love to throw dinner parties and to cook for my friends. Being Italian, I tend to stick to Italian foods, but every once and a while I’ll bust out something else. I make one hell of a tuna noodle casserole and more recently, I made this kick ass chili mac and cheese bake which really only came about because I realized I didn’t have any ground beef to put into the mac and cheese. Total epic genius, right there. It was surprisingly good.

Casseroles are honestly the perfect creation. They are one whole meal: meat, carbs, veggies, all in one dish. You can pretty much throw anything together, bake the shit out of it and viola, you have yourself a meal. This is why I secretly wish I could carry a casserole around me with me in my purse. Just carrying a totes bag around with a casserole dish in it, whipping it out at the most inopportune moments. Busting it out in the middle of a doctor’s appointment. Sharing it with people on the subway. Trying to sell plates of it to other diners at a restaurant. What’s the point of making a casserole if you can’t share it with everyone.

If you’re ever feeling up to it, try out one of these delicious looking one-dish delights.

Chicken Florentine Casserole
Pizza Casserole
Chicken & Pea Au Grautin Casserole
Zucchini Herb Casserole
Turkey Tetrazzini

Britt & Mike are planning on having their rehearsal dinner at a B.Y.O.F. (Bring Your Own Food) bar in downtown, and you better bet your ass I’m showing up with a casserole or two. It’s the only polite things to do. Grace Kelly would bring a casserole.

(photo source)