Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Muesday: The Centennial is Here B*tches!

I'm calling this a centennial post even though it hasn't been a hundred years and it's not a 100th anniversary. But this is most definitely my 100th post! This is a big deal, and is actually quite surprising. I know people didn't really think that I would stick with this whole blogging thing, and to be perfectly honest, I didn't really think that I would stick with it either. I started it at a time when I just really needed to get everything out of my head. I do that sometimes. Live in my head, analyzing and thinking and reliving everything. At the time, there were just too many things floating in my brain, and I needed an outlet. So I started this. And here we are, at my 100th post. I think it's kind of a big deal mostly because I have never really been the journal type. Like I said, I was always content to just let it sit in my brain. Why write shit down when my brain is so much more reliable and I don't have to worry about people finding it and reading it. My brain hardly ever fails me, and I never really forget anything, because of what I would like to think is my superior memory. But then last July happened, and I just felt like things were falling apart, and I didn't want to be in my head anymore. I wanted everything out and I wanted to just not think or remember or analyze. In a sense, I wanted peace and quiet away from myself. So I basically put myself up on the internet. I put my thoughts, my likes, and basically who I am, up for the whole world to see. I really try to be as honest as I can, sharing my flaws, and quirks, and in the process, I found that what started out as a way for me to get away from myself, has actually become a part of who I am. If that makes any sense. While the times between posting may vary, I couldn't imagine not having this little outlet. I actually think I would go crazier than I already am, if I didn't have it, and I have one person to thank for that. You know exactly who you are, and I would just like to say, thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Without you there would be no Lopsided: Life, Love and Everything In Between, and there would be no me as I am now. Thank you for showing me that, in your own silly, strange way. I guess in the end I learned a very valuable lesson, so thank you for that too.

Today I am sharing with you all one of my theme songs. Yes, I have a playlist of theme songs. Songs that I would want to be on the movie soundtrack to my life. The soundtrack to my life consists of songs that I love, that I feel describe me or were playing when I was the happiest/saddest/insertemotionhere. They are songs that mean something to me. Most of them happen to be of the poppy variety, but hey, I did grow up in the '90's. It's no secret that I have a love for artists like Hanson, and the Spice Girls, and other great pop icons of the '90's, and one of my favourites is Mandy Moore. She is one of those artists who got better with age. Sure her music was great when it was sugary sweet and she was singing Crush, but as time went on, her music became a bit more singer/songwriter-y, and just better. I will always love Mandy Moore. I think it has something to do with her lyrics, and just the simple way that she sings them. Not to mention the fact that I think she is absolutely adorable, and looks like the type of person that you could be best friends with. So, in honour of my centennial post and from the things that I have learned, and my future, I am going to share with you the title track from the soundtrack of my life. Enjoy Extraordinary by Mandy Moore.

Also, remember that time I was all like "hey, I'm being published!"? Well guess what?! My article is out! It's very exciting for me! Hopefully people don't judge it too harshly! I worked really hard on it, and now my work is out there for the whole wide world to read. Kind of scary if I stop and think about it. Oh well! If anyone is interested it's called "'The inordinate excess in apparel': Sumptuary Legislation in Tudor England".

Happy Muesday!


Saturday, 28 January 2012

Leah's Bucket List: Meet Hanson, Check!

We met Zac. No big deal. You should be jealous!
First, let me preface this post by stating that it was written by my inner 11 year old.

Last night, I went to see Hanson. Legit. You can judge me all you like, but I have loved Hanson since I was 11 and I continue to love their music, and I am not ashamed to admit that. I openly love Hanson, and listen to their music. And for all you judgers and Hanson haters out there, who think that all of their music is exactly like Mmmbop, you are wrong! They have at least 4 albums that came out after Middle of Nowhere, and the music is so different! I loved Hanson with all of my heart when I was younger. I had all of their CD's, which I listened to on repeat, I had the movies, I had t-shirts. You name it, I had it. And while I may have grown out of the need to plaster my walls with Hanson posters from the great teeny bop magazines like Tiger Beat, I never grew out of my love for their music. And last night it was honestly like I was 11 all over again and all my 11 year old dreams were coming true. I remember when I was younger and Power 92, when it still existed, and was still awesome, would make concert announcements. Every time they would announce that they were going to make an announcement, I would sit and pray that they would say Hanson was coming to town. It never happened. That is, until 2008. In 2008 I finally saw Hanson live in concert at Ed's (Edmonton Event Centre), with my lovely friend Kassandra, who also has a lovely little blog about fashion. It was great, minus the creepy old lady who was knitting in the parking lot, and was like a cat in heat trying to get to the front of the line as they were letting everyone into the actual venue. Normally, I probably would have said something to her, but she had a pair of scissors in her hand, and I didn't want to get shived in the side. It was a good concert nonetheless, but not the greatest. At one point I thought I was going to get trampled. Being 5 feet tall isn't conducive to concert situations. I was also bummed because I didn't get a chance to meet them (a dream that has been on my bucket list since I found out what a bucket list is), and despite this, I went away content, having finally seen my favourite band of all time live in concert.

And then they announced that they were coming back to Edmonton! Needless to say, Kass and I engaged in a series of furious text messages, and she managed to get us tickets. And holy crap, IT. WAS. AMAZING! They played all of their best songs, and my absolute favourite song of all time EVER, If Only (seriously, if anyone ever wants to find their way into my heart/seriously impress me, all they have to do is play If Only)! They even played Mmmbop and I am proud to say that I still know all the words. They played Penny and Me, Where's The Love, Give A Little, This Time Around, Crazy Beautiful, and finished the night off with an encore of A Minute Without You. It was honestly the BEST. NIGHT. EVER. It was also the best because this time I MET THEM! I MET HANSON, AND NOW I CAN DIE HAPPY! I can now cross that off of my bucket list! Kass, her sister Mimi (who also has a lovely little blog) and I waited, outside, in the cold, to meet them, get our pictures taken, and to have them sign our shirts for 2 hours. Crazy? You bet! But it was worth it! And they were so nice! Ugh! I can't even properly articulate how awesome this was for me! It was just the best. Jealous? You should be!

Instead of trying to get across how awesome this was for me, I am going to share some of their songs!

Here is If Only. Seriously, the best!

Gentlemen, you could learn something from this song!

Anyway, I would say that I hope that everyone had an awesome Friday, but I highly doubt that anyone has as awesome of a Friday as Kass and I did!


Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Muesday: I'm a Greedy Little Knowledge Whore

I need to address an issue in my life. My issue is the fact that I have to know everything all the time. I can never be content with just knowing one thing. I am like a greedy little knowledge whore, and it doesn't even matter what kind of knowledge it is, as long as I have gleaned some little nugget to add to my brain. That's one reason why I love school so much! I have basically taken almost every history class offered by both the University of Alberta and MacEwan University, but you know what, it's still not enough. My interests are wide and varied, and span disciplines and time periods. I am fascinated by forensic science and the law; at one point I flirted with archaeology and classical studies, and I am engaged in a secret, torrid love affair with the 18th century. I might sneer at anthropology and sociology and psychology, but deep down, I love them them all. I have an addiction (well I have several, but this is probably my most expensive addiction of them all, aside from my Tiffany addiction), and I don't think I will ever kick this one. But I think I'm okay with that. Learning for me is like the most delicious ice cream sundae covered with whipped cream and extra unicorns covered in chocolate and diamonds! I think that my new motto is going to be "Know all the things!".

On another note, I realized that I can still legit use the term "when I grow up..." Oh the perks of being miniature sized! This excites me a great deal.

So, I learned something from The Twitter this week. I learned that Minus the Bear is coming out with a new album! I am sure that people are like "hey, this is old news", and to them I say, eat it! It's news to me, and it's exciting. I was introduced to Minus the Bear by this guy that I was dating. While our relationship was far from perfect (and also taught me that dating younger guys might not be the best idea), he did have superb taste in music and Minus the Bear was one of the good things that came out of our relationship. Minus the Bear has now become one of my FAVOURITE bands! I can't get enough! So, you can only imagine my excitement when I heard about their fifth album coming out hopefully in the not so distant future. They have this amazing electronic-alternative-rock type feel to them. If I had to categorize Minus the Bear in a word it would be fantabulous! So in honour of Minus the Bear coming out with their 5th album, I give to you My Time off their last album OMNI (which also just so happens to be my favourite album of 2010). If you don't go out and promptly buy all their albums, then there is something seriously wrong with you.

Also, because I love you all so very much, I am going to give you an extra special treat this week and give you not one, but TWO awesome songs! A little bird told me that The Used have a new album coming out 27 March called Vulberable. This makes my inner 16 year old extremely happy! So, in honour of another fantastic band releasing an album, I am going to give you my favourite song by The Used called Noises and Kisses. Also, Jeff, I liked it first. So there.

Happy Muesday!


Sunday, 22 January 2012

Gong Hei Fat....I'm Not Actually Asian

Gong hei fat choi everyone! It's Chinese New Year! It's now the year of the Dragon. I'm not sure what this actually means, but as someone who is often mistaken for someone who is Asian, or at least half Asian, I feel the need to throw this Happy New Year out into the world! I also feel like this is appropriate because I work with an accidental Chinese hipster, who just so happens to be my partner in crime. Also, I would just like to say that it would be awesome to have a dragon as a pet. I picture something along the lines of Mushu from Mulan. But only if it was that exact dragon. Otherwise, no deal, mostly because I picture it looking like an overgrown lizard, and I have a terrifying phobia of reptiles and amphibians.

Happy Chinese New Year!


Friday, 20 January 2012

Guess Who's a Champ? This B*tch

Guess who has two thumbs and has been cancer free for exactly on year today?! This bitch! Talk to anyone who has had cancer, or knows someone who has/had cancer, and beat it, and they will tell you the magic numbers, kind of like the lottery but not quite: 1, 5, 10...etc. 1 year is a big deal. It means that I have been pseudo-healthy for one whole year. I think this calls for a celebration! Basically, I want an excuse to eat a cupcake and buy myself stuff. At least that's how I am going to justify it.

I hope everyone has a super fantastic weekend. I know I will!


Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Muesday: My Great Great Grandparents Had No Idea They Were Settling on a Frozen Wasteland

We've been spoiled. The weather in Edmonton has been unseasonably warm this winter. Last week it was +13 celcius, and now it's -29, with a windchill, which means it feels like it's about minus a billion degrees outside (or -44, but really who's counting). I got complacent. I got used to wearing cute light jackets and ballet flats and TOMS. Now I have to bundle up before I go outside because it's cold enough to cause frostbite in 5-10 minutes. It's days like today, and actually the whole week, that remind me that I live in the asshole of the world. When my ancestors were given the choice of Alberta or California, they chose Alberta because they got more land. Land that is frozen and covered in snow for about 8 months out of the year. Land where you can't grow palm or orange trees. Let's take a second and think about which one would have been the better choice. If I could go back in time and tell them that by settling in Dante's forgotten frozen circle of hell, they are making future generations completely miserable for a substantial portion of the year, I would. I wouldn't even hesitate to threaten then with violence. Bad life choice great great grandparents, bad life choice.

It's days like today that make me yearn for when schools would close because it's too cold. That only happens in Alberta when it's -50 outside. Buses don't run, no one wants to go outside. I miss snow/cold days. Being in university means that snow days don't exist. The only time they exist is when you skip class, and that just leaves me with a sense of guilt. Walking around campus today was torture. Luckily, almost all my classes can be reached via pedway. Seriously, it's cold, and I hate it. This weather makes me want to cuddle up in front the fireplace, with my favourite blanket from Restoration Hardware, with a mug of pumpkin chai tea from David's Tea, and A Feast for Crows by George R. R. Martin. It's days like today that make me wish that I was a kept woman...kind of...a little bit.

Today I am giving you a fabulous duet between Jay Malinowski from the Canadian band Bedouin Soundclash, and Beatrice Martin, a French Canadian artist known as Couer de Pirate. They come together to create the dynamic duo of Armistice. Mission Bells is probably one of the top played songs on my iPod. I love the mariachi feel to it, and the chemistry between Malinowski and Martin. I love how the song is about missing someone and remembering. Also, I love her tattoos. I am kind of a sucker for really awesome sleeves. So, enjoy the awesome, old school, mariachi-esque tones of Mission Bells by Armistice.

Happy Muesday everyone! Stay warm! Remember losing limbs due to frostbite isn't sexy!


Sunday, 15 January 2012

The Bill Nye of Rock n' Roll. For Real.

Donnie Iris is like Bill Nye...the Bill Nye of rock and roll. Also, I think he needs to invest in orthodontics.

When I was little(r), my parents had a great system worked out. My mum would go to work during the day, and my dad would work nights. What this meant, was that I was either in the care of a nanny (which is really just a classier way of saying glorified babysitter...I can say this because for a stretch, I was a nanny, and let me tell you, looking after children for any extended periods of time is the best form of birth control), or, my dad would stay home with me. I wasn't the easiest of children. I never slept, and I always had to be entertained. My poor father would come home from work in the wee hours of the morning, and then have to spend the next 8-10 hours playing Barbies (or in my case Lady Lovely Locks and my little pony (before they got all creepy looking)), and watching Lady and the Tramp or the Secret of Nimh. Sometimes we would watch the really really old Star Trek...the one with William Shatner. But my favorite part of the day was always when he would start preparing dinner. We lived in this house somewhere on the North end of Edmonton, and while he cooked, he would put on some his old records. My favorite was Ah, Leah by Donnie Iris. Even then I had an inflated sense of self. Listening to it now, it's probably not the most appropriate song for a 3 1/2 year old to be listening to, but my dad has pretty awesome taste in music, so I am going to let that slide. To be perfectly honest, I had forgotten all about the song, until randomly it came on the radio. And now, I've had it stuck in my head for days. That and We Didn't Start the Fire by Billy Joel. Seriously, one of the crowning achievements of my life is the fact that I know every single word to that song, because to me it's a pretty big deal. It's right up there with getting published. Impressed? You should be. Sort of.

Anyway, my Sunday has been spent catching up on all the things that I forgot to do during the week, whilst listening to a bunch of oldies, and trying to make my dad okay with the fact that if I get into law school, I might be moving to the UK. Pretty good way to waste a Sunday if you ask me. I hope everyone had an awesome weekend. Also, if you're in Alberta, also known as Dante's forgotten frozen circle of hell, I sincerely hope that everyone is staying warm. Contrary to popular belief, frostbite and the ensuing bouts of gangrene aren't sexy. Stay warm friends.


Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Muesday: Neglect is Another Form of Love...Right?

I feel like a bad parent. Like I have neglected a child or something like that, or maybe a small animal...possibly a hamster. I haven't posted in several days, which is very unlike me. It's weird. Needless to say, I have no excuse other than life and other things (like books) took up my time. It's a good thing that my blog isn't really a child or a small animal that requires me to be responsible and do things like feed it, especially considering I don't remember to feed myself half the time. Being responsible is hard yo, don't be hatin'.

A new semester has started. I don't know how I feel about this. Well, I kind of do. I feel that people need to drop the class I want to be in, and stop wasting space. I also have a sinking suspicion that life is going to be hectic and nerve wracking and all sorts of things that are going to make sad and pouty. On the plus side, I am taking a giant leap out of my historical comfort zone of early modern English law and social policy, and taking classes on contemporary India. How exciting is that!? I get to sit and watch Indian cinema for a semester! I can't wait! I am giving myself a gold star for taking that leap.

I am also having some difficulty trying to choose a song for today's post. I have so many good ones that I want to share and I can't decide which one to choose. I have left it up to fate, and actually drew them out of my hat. That actually happened. For reals. Anyway, today I bring you a duet between Tim Myers and MoZella. First off, I love MoZella, especially her cover of Weezer's Say It Ain't So, and now she has paired her talents with another amazing artist. It just has such a good beat to it that you can't help but dance around! With that being said, I give to you Each Other Brother


P.S. If you haven't already read George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series, you need to. Now. Those books are what have been taking up all my time. Seriously, you start one and then two hours later you look up and you have read 400 pages. They are, amazing. And, they were also made into an HBO Series called A Game of Thrones. Go watch it. Do it, do it now!

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Baked Lentil Chips: Not Savory or Delicious. Are You Surprised?

This post contains quite a substantial bit of skinny white girl first world problem whining. Please forgive me.

My family is pretty healthy. We exercise regularly, eat good food and try to make healthy, good life choices. That's always how it's been. I always joke that I live with the cast of the jersey shore because of how much time my mum, dad and sister spend at the gym. I personally hate the gym. I hate the sweaty equipment, I hate the juice monkys who would rather stare at their rippling biceps while forgetting about their shrinking balls, I hate the weird Zumba people. I just don't like it. The only time I really step foot in a gym is when I go to Millennium place for soccer practice. That's it. But the whole gym thing is really a segue to my main point. A result of this whole healthy life style, and because I had cancer that one time, my family has become obsessed with nutrition.

I don't need to be told that being conscious of what you put into your body is important, but my family takes it to the extreme. Instead of having normal things, our pantry is filled with protein shakes and bars. Our fridge is stocked with fresh fruit and vegetables. This is all well and good, until you get a craving for something that is probably not very good for you, like candy or chips. We don't have candy or chips in our house. My mum's version of candy are dried apricots. Sure, they are a delicious healthy snack, but when you're PMSing and have a mad craving for twizzlers and chocolate, it's enough to make you homicidal. Remember when you were a kid and you got fruit snacks in your lunch, like a Fruit-by-the-Foot or Gushers? I even know of some people who still buy them. But not in my house. Oh no. We get fruit to go. Great. More dried fruit. Just what I wanted. More fiber...and it's not even covered in chocolate. Have you ever had a craving for chips? Like some delicious Old Dutch Salt n' Vinegar chips? Or BBQ? I get those cravings all the time. But in order to satisfy these cravings, I have to eat them in secret. Why you ask? Because all we have for salty savory delicious chips in our house are Baked Lentil Chips. Not only are they not satisfying in any way, shape or form, but they also have the same taste and consistency of cardboard, or at least what I imagine cardboard to taste like. They are neither tasty or delicious and they leave you with a really bad taste in your mouth. Also, I am very suspicious of a chip bag that offers a "Great, Original Hummus Recipe" on the back. Last time I checked, lentils were not my go to snack. Again, I realize I am whining about expensive, gluten free, organic white girl, first world food, but seriously, am I asking to much here? Can't we just eat real food like normal people? Can we take a break from the Quinoa salads and crap? Have you ever smelled cooking quinoa? It smells like sadness and death in a pot, and kind of looks like throw up.

I know that there are several solutions to this problem that I have, but most of them would leave me feeling guilty. Eating this healthy organic crap has been ingrained in my mind, so now, I can't even enjoy junk food when I eat it. I know I could just cook things for myself, but that would require me to learn to cook, and I don't think anyone wants to see that. I could also just buy my own crap and hide it away, but I think that might lead to a hoarding problem. I watch TLC. Hiding food is just a hop, skip and a jump away from cockroaches and the department of health and safety condemning your house.

Long story short, baked lentil chips are gross. I have now saved everyone from wasting their money on them. You're welcome.


Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Muesday: Your Dog Doesn't Need Juicy Emblazoned on Its Ass

This is my little trainwreck. We never dyed him pink again

I pride myself on having above average intelligence. I will admit, that I might not always have the right answers, but more often than not, I do. However, there is one thing that I will never understand: People, and their need to dress animals up as humans.

PETA goes on an on about how animals have rights and dignity and blah blah blah, and I agree with them to a certain extent. But I would think that if people wanted to maintain the dignity and self respect of animals, they wouldn't think the best way to do that would be by dressing them up. Seriously, if I were an animal, probably a small dog of some sort, I would lose all self respect and dignity that I had for myself if my owner dressed me in a little jumper. I mean really. Do people honestly think that their pets enjoy being dressed in doggy juicy couture? Do they really think that their dog can't wait to be strapped into some hideous velour monstrosity that will make them waddle around and wish that they could dig the biggest hole in the world so they can then climb into it and then die of humiliation? And furthermore, do these owners have any idea how incredibly stupid they look walking a dog who is wearing a dress? I know for an absolute fact that animals hate this. Before they passed, I had two dogs. Poodles (and yes, you can make fun all you like but they were wonderful and hypoallergenic and the best). We had a black one and a white one. One day, when I was around 11 and my sister 8, we decided that we were going to dye my white dog red with Kool-Aid and food colouring. It was fun until he came out pink. The pinkest of pink. He looked like giant ball of cotton candy and it was hysterical. But honestly, every time we walked him, my poor little trainwreck of a dog, he looked so embarrassed and shot me hateful looks. I felt so bad for him, but I also secretly laughed. I couldn't help it.

Another beef I have with pet owners: your dog doesn't need a damn doggie stroller. It has 4 legs, it can walk. People talk about how obesity is this huge problem and it is. But that doesn't mean that people should contribute to canine obesity. People treat animals like children. Sorry, but no. I would like to sometimes be pushed around in a stroller while shopping, but you don't see me actually acting on it. No joke. In the LA area there is this magical place called Fashion Island. If I had to be stranded on an island, this would be the island I would choose. But here, in this magical place, the good people of California think it is socially acceptable to push their darling little dogs around in strollers while shopping. I can understand if the dog has something wrong with it and can't walk, but when I see someone carrying their baby in their arms and the dog in the stroller, something is seriously wrong. All it does is provide me with something and someone else to publicly mock. Please people, stop dressing up your dogs and make them walk. It's good for them.

Today is the first Muesday of 2012! Exciting, no?! At least I think it is. I was considering continuing with the whole Canadian music thing, but I have decided not to. It has become a bit too restrictive, and I don't like that. So with that being said, this week I bring to a little ditty called Six Weeks by a band out of Iceland, also known as the home of Bjork and her weird swan dress, called Of Monsters and Men. I love them. They are my first discovery of 2012, even though their EP came out a mere 5 days before Christmas, and I can't wait for their full length album! So enjoy this great tune by am amazing little Icelandic indie group!