Sunday, January 31, 2010

We Are The Champions


The GRAMMY AWARDS are tonight!!

Who loves award shows? I DO! And who's excited that the Grammys are on tonight??? I AM!!

I love watching the Grammys and seeing all the outfits, hearing all the amazing performances and laughing at some of the speeches too! I generally list each category and who I think will win, but there are seriously a MILLION categories! So I'm just going to pick some of the main ones. Here are my choices (highlighted in pink) and the winners (highlited in bold green) for the Grammys:

RECORD OF THE YEAR:
Halo — Beyonce
I Gotta Feeling — The Black Eyed Peas
Use Somebody — Kings of Leon (my pick!)
Poker Face — Lady Gaga
You Belong With Me — Taylor Swift

ALBUM OF THE YEAR:
I Am . . . Sasha Fierce — Beyonce
The E.N.D. — The Black Eyed Peas
The Fame — Lady Gaga
Big Whiskey And the Groogrux King — Dave Matthews Band
Fearless — Taylor Swift (my pick!)

SONG OF THE YEAR:
Poker Face — Lady Gaga
Pretty Wings — Maxwell
Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It) —Beyonce (my pick!)
Use Somebody — Kings of Leon
You Belong With Me — Taylor Swift

BEST NEW ARTIST:
Zac Brown Band
Keri Hilson
MGMT
Silverspun Pickups
The Ting Tings

BEST FEMALE POP VOCAL PERFORMANCE:
Hometown Glory — Adele
Halo — Beyonce
Hot N Cold — Katy Perry
Sober — Pink
You Belong With Me — Taylor Swift

BEST MALE POP VOCAL PERFORMANCE:
This Time — John Legend
Love You — Maxwell
Make It Mine — Jason Mraz
If You Don't Know Me By Now — Seal
All About the Love Again — Stevie Wonder

BEST POP PERFORMANCE BY A DUO OR GROUP WITH VOCALS:
I Gotta Feeling — The Black Eyed Peas
We Weren't Born To Follow — Bon Jovi
Never Say Never — The Fray
Sara Smile — Daryls Hall & John Oates
Kids — MGMT

BEST POP COLLABORATION WITH VOCALS:
Sea of Heartbreak — Rosanne Cash & Bruce Springsteen
Love Sex Magic — Ciara & Justin Timberlake
Lucky — Jason Mraz & Colbie Caillat (my pick!)
Baby , It's Cold Outside — Willie Nelson & Norah Jones
Breathe — Taylor Swift & Colbie Caillat

BEST POP VOCAL ALBUM:
The E.N.D. — The Black Eyed Peas
Breakthrough — Colbie Caillat
All I Ever Wanted — Kelly Clarkson
The Fray — The Fray
Funhouse — Pink

BEST DANCE RECORDING:
Boom Boom Pow — The Black Eyed Peas
When Love Takes Over — David Guetta & Kelly Rowland
Poker Face — Lady Gaga (my pick!)
Celebration — Madonna
Womanizer — Britney Spears

BEST ROCK PERFORMANCE BY A DUO OR GROUP:
Can't Find My Way Home — Eric Clapton & Steve Winwood
Life In Technicolor II — Coldplay
21 Guns — Green Day
Use Somebody — Kings Of Leon (my pick!)
I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight — U2

BEST HARD ROCK PERFORMANCE:
War Machine — AC/DC
Check My Brain — Alice In Chains
What I've Done — Linkin Park
The Unforgiven III — Metallica
Burn It to The Ground — Nickelback

BEST ROCK SONG:
The Fixer — Pearl Jam
I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight — U2
21 Guns — Green Day
Use Somebody — Kings Of Leon (my pick!)
Working On A Dream — Bruce Springsteen

BEST ROCK ALBUM:
Black Ice — AC/DC
Live From Madison Square Garden — Eric Clapton & Steve Winwood
21st Century Breakdown — Green Day
Big Whiskey And The Groogrux King — Dave Matthew Band
No Line On The Horizon — U2

BEST ALTERNATIVE MUSIC ALBUM:
Everything That Happens Will Happen Today — David Byrne & Brian Eno
The Open Door — Death Cab For Cutie
Sounds Of The Universe — Depeche Mode
Wolgang Amadeus Pheonix — Phoenix (my pick!)
It's Blitz! — Yeah Yeah Yeahs

BEST R&B SONG:
Blame It — Jamie Foxx
Lions, Tigers & Bears — Jazmine Sullivan
Pretty Wings — Maxwell
Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It) — Beyonce (my pick!)
Under — Pleasure P

BEST RAP SOLO PERFORMANCE:
Best I Ever Had — Drake
Beautiful — Eminem
D.O.A. (Death Of Auto-Tune) — Jay-Z (my pick!)
Day 'N' Nite — Kid Cudi
Casa Bey —Mos Def

BEST RAP/SUNG COLLABORATION:
Ego — Beyonce & Kanye West
Know You Down — Keri Hilson, Kanye West & Ne-Yo
Run This Town — Jay-Z, Rihanna & Kanye West
I'm On A Boat — The Lonely Island & T-Pain
Dead And Gone — T.I. & Justin Timberlake

BEST COUNTRY ALBUM:
The Foundation — Zac Brown Band
Twang — George Strait
Fearless — Taylor Swift (my pick!)
Defying Gravity — Keith Urban
Call Me Crazy — Lee Ann Womack

BEST GOSPEL PERFORMANCE:
Wait On The Lord — Donnie McClurkin Featuring Karen Clark Sheard
Free To Be Me — Francesca Battistelli
Jesus Is Love — Heather Headley Featuring Smokie Norful
I Believe — Johnny Lang With Fisk Jubilee Singers
Born Again — Third Day, Featuring Lacey Moseley

BEST COMPILATION SOUNDTRACK ALBUM FOR MOTION PICTURE, TELEVISION, OR OTHER VISUAL MEDIA:
Slumdog Millionaire — Various Artists
Cadillac Records — Various Artists
Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds —Various Artists
True Blood — Various Artists
Twilight — Various Artists

BEST SCORE SOUNDTRACK ALBUM FOR MOTION PICTURE, TELEVISION, OR OTHER VISUAL MEDIA:
Up
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (Disc 1)
Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince
Milk
Star Trek

BEST SONG WRITTEN FOR MOTION PICTURE, TELEVISION, OR OTHER VISUAL MEDIA:
Jai Ho — Slumdog Millionaire
All Is Love — Where The Wild Things Are
Decode — Twilight
Once In A Lifetime — Cadillac Records
The Wrestler — The Wrestler

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Colors Of The Wind

I recently started following a blog called Color Me Katie. It's a blog that Katie Sokoler maintains. She's a NY Photographer and, I think, one of the most fun and creative people on the planet. Her blog always inspires the creativity that runs amok in my own mind.

Katie recently blogged about a Chalk Walk she did, where she went out in front of her home and traced her footsteps in bright chalk colors. You can read HER post about it HERE.

I decided I would do the same, and add some color to my block as well. I live on a fairly busy main street in the Northgate neighborhood. A LOT of people are constantly walking up and down my street to get to the store, the mall, the ice cream shop, etc. The fact that it was just a wee bit rainy outside just made this art project even more fun! Here are some pictures from my Chalk Walk:

my weapons of choice :D

You know, just so I won't be held liable . . .

Step One

Soooo fun and soooo pretty!

I'm in love with the colorful contrast!

One foot in front of the other . . .

Almost to the end!

Looking back at where I've been

It was SO fun sitting by my window and watching all the people follow the footsteps and laugh and question why the footprints were there!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Good Old Acappella

Last Sunday I got to go to my housemate, Karli's, A Capella invitational. It was so fun! I love watching people sing and it was fun to go out with some of my other housemates and cheer Karli on! Here are some photos and videos from the performance:

Before the performance

After the show

GARDEN LEVEL


GARDEN LEVEL: I'LL MAKE LOVE TO YOU

HusKEYS


HusKEYS: POKERFACE


WOMEN & CHILDREN


WOMEN & CHILDREN: DRIVE

MAJOR TREBLE


MAJOR TREBLE: LIKE A PRAYER

GUEST A CAPELLA GROUP


GUEST A CAPELLA GROUP: JESSIE'S GIRL


Now here's the sad thing . . . right about this time, my memory card got full and I couldn't record any more video. SAD. So I didn't get to record Karli's group, but they did GREAT! They sang Imogen Heap's HIDE AND SEEK, GOOD OLD ACAPELLA, Seal's KISS BY A ROSE, and John Fogerty's PROUD MARY. They were awesome! What I WAS able to find was another video of them performing TIME AFTER TIME, in which my housemate Karli is featured! Woot!

UNLEASHED! A CAPELLA





And I didn't get a photo of them, but here is UnDEFINED, an A Capella group from Western Washington University, singing a song called
McDONALD'S GIRL



------------------------

As a special treat, here is a video of another A Capella group performing Poker Face. One of the baristas at Caffe Ladro told me about this one and it's hilarious!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

The Music Of The Night

I realize I haven't shared some of my latest music finds, and it's probably time I do that! :D

Here are 5 of my newer additions to my iTunes—I hope you like them!

(if not, don't tell me, kay. Or if you do, say "Just kidding" afterwards so I'll be left to wonder if you were really joking or not. Odds are, I'll forget 5 minutes later)

1. SET FIRE TO THE THIRD BAR by Snow Patrol
New fave! Love it! It's emo, yes, but sooo sooo beautiful! I realize it's not REALLY a NEW song per se, but it's definitely a new favorite.



2. WE BELONG by Everly
I love Pat Benetar's stuff and this is a pretty rad cover!



3. RACE YOU by Elizabeth and the Catapult
I got to see her in concert (opening for Justin Nozuka) and she's so fun! I listen to this song on rainy or dismal weather days and it picks me up! :D




4. FROM WHERE YOU ARE by Lifehouse
I feel like it's been FOREVER since they've released new stuff. But this song, i love :D It's beautiful :D



5. SOMEDAY by Tegan and Sara
This is just such a fun song that I like to listen to on the way in to work. Or on the way home. Or during the day . . . okay okay you get the point. But the tune is great and it's a real fun song!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Silence



Lost comes back on in 6 days!!

I was a bit worried at first that I was going to have to miss this season or watch it by myself on hulu . . . but that's not how it's goin' down folks!

I talked to Alisa (my small group leader) last night and since our small group meets on Tuesday nights, I'll be getting together with Alisa and her husby Dan, and Kyle (drummer for our worship team) and another friend to watch LOST on Wednesdays—recorded from Tuesday!

Ideally, I'd like to see it Tuesday night, but getting to be around friends AND watch LOST in it's last season is SO much better! I'm really excited!

I'm also a bit worried. Here is what sucks about living on the west coast—everyone on the east coast gets to see things before I do! So all my friend to the east of me will be tweeting and FBing and texting up a storm about what's going on. And I can't just NOT check my twitter and FB! I'm too addicted to them! I don't know if I could handle interweebz silence from Tuesday afternoon to Wednesday night. It's just TOO tempting!!

Ahhhh! I just don't know what I'll do. I may try it next week, just to see how strong I am against the forces of internet addiction. ;) We'll see how it goes.

In the meantime, the CHOPSTICK CHALLENGE is going great! In fact, today I accidentally left my chopsticks at work, so I ate at Panda Express for din, just so I could be sure to have chopsticks readily available. So now I have 2 sets!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

That's What Friends Are For



My old housemate, Geizel, was on the bus this morning on my ride in to downtown. :D She and I had planned this summer to go to New York together, but due to her needing to take medication not covered by her health care plan, she's not going to be able to.
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But not to worry, this change of plans just makes things EVEN BETTER!

I talked to my best friend, Sarah, this morning. She is originally from Baltimore, Maryland but now she and her husband live in West Virginia. So, in our talking, the loose game plan right now is to fly into Baltimore, and meet up with her there and stay the night with her folks, who just bought a swanky new townhouse. Did I mention that this townhouse has a game room? With board games and video games and all other types of gaming goodness??? I'm SO stoked!

From there, we'll spend some time in Baltimore with the family and then she and I will road trip it up to The Big Apple and check out some fun stuff together! I'm super duper excited!

Then we are gonna head back to Baltimore and spend some more time enjoying each other's company.

I'm really excited to see what kind of silly goodness we can add to our time together!

The last time we saw each other was over a year and a half ago. This visit is LONG overdue!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Mi Vida Loca



I'm totally going to see this movie!
You know why? I'll tell you why:

1. I TOTALLY love America Ferrera—she's one of my fave actresses

2. It involves a crazy mexican family—like mine!

3. It's funny—and i like funny movies

4. El Vato dice bye bye—give it up for Spanglish!!

5. I realize that whoever I choose to marry, a little bit of those shenanigans may ensue—I'll take notes during the movie on how to cut the damage down. ;)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Chopsticks


These are the weapons of my warfare this week

On Saturday when I went to dinner with the housemates at the Japanese restaurant, they gave us chopsticks to eat with (duh!). So as we were waiting for our food, I decided to pick out ice cubes from my glass of water with my chopsticks.

During our dinner conversation, we were talking about my ability to pick out ice cubes with my chopsticks. So I decided that for this next week, starting on Monday and going 'til Sunday, I'm going to eat all of my food using ONLY those chopsticks. I'm thinking it will be a fun endeavor and a small challenge at that. So tomorrow starts day one!

I'm quite excited and I'll keep you posted on how it goes!

In the meantime, just try to imagine me eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch with only chopsticks! ;)

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Ice Cream

We had some housemate hangout time tonight and we went to Molly Moons Ice Cream and then to a Japanese restaurant in Wallingford. I had already eaten dinner earlier, and was still full, so I just got some edamame at the restaurant, and some amazing ice cream at Molly Moons. They had this amazing "Scout" Mint ice cream and it was delish!

So after eating my ice cream, the sugar buzz came and it showed up strong the rest of the night. We were driving around in Karli's car and she was bumpin' some rap music and we would be at stoplights, and me riding shotgun, would whip out my chopsticks (from the restaurant) and start bustin' some moves for all the passersby. It was awesome!! Then we went to the QFC grocery store and I was dancing in the aisles to the music playing in the store. Gina dared me to go up to one of the cashiers and dance in front of them randomly—so i DID! The people in front of me were laughing. I loved it! :D


2 things that prove it was an amazing night:

1. This status update from one of my housemates:

and



2. This video of our car dancing shenanigans:


Friday, January 22, 2010

Laughing With

I've been noticing as of late, my different laughs. I have a different laugh for so many things. I USED to laugh like The Count from Sesame Street—you know, that "One rubber ducky, Ha! Two rubber duckies, HA HA!" It was weird. I've since outgrown it.

But I am quite the laughing anomaly. When I laugh, I really get into it. Sometimes it's really hard to stop. I'm like a giant tickle me Amanda—it's ridiculous. I remember when my old home church used to have pews instead of chairs, and I would be sitting in the service and the pastor would say something humorous. A lot of times, it was only humorous to me, because of the WAY he would say something or because something he said triggered another memory of something funny. I really have a hard time focusing during teachings as it is, so my mind always wandered. This would only be a minor problem if I didn't feel the need to add commentary along with my giggles, which only leads to more giggles. So then like, the whole pew would be shaking cause of my laughing. My friend Don would always let me know. ;) Gosh I was SUCH a distraction. Oh well, hindsight is 20/20, eh?

Anyway . . . all of that to say:

I have an issue with typing or saying LOL. I always say ha ha ha ha ha, and I type it out for as long as I'm actually laughing. I don't know why, I just get hung up with saying LOL. I don't mind when others do it, I just can't bring myself to do it.

I wonder if there's a support group for this . . .

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Endlessly, She Said

Today is one of those days. No, not one of THOSE days ;)

But one of those really stressful days. I like to call them DEADLINE DAYS. Working in publications, time is money and money is time, and we are constantly producing publications. This past week has been super important because we've been working to publish one of our most important resources ever. The good thing is that my boss has been SUPER happy with my work, and that makes me feel awesome! But I gotta get real—deadlines stress me out. I like to think that deadlines stress the majority of people out though.

Anyway, so for the deadline today, I had to get this publication ready for a last round proof for our CEO to look at. I would run up a draft proof to his office, then 5 minutes later, I'd get a call that he wanted something added, or something tweaked, or something taken away for clarity purposes. Then he wanted 4 copies of the pamphlet made for the proofreaders to check over the weekend. And he was leaving out of town at 1 p.m., so all the final changes for the last proof had to be made before that. So needless to say (but I'm gonna say it anyway), I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off, and then I was hunkered down at the computer, frantically working to make things perfect.

By the time 1 p.m. rolled around, I successfully handed in the proof and delivered the other 3 to the respective persons. So I got to eat lunch around 1 ish. I was soooo hungry from running up and down the 3 flights of stairs over and over again (we don't have an elevator at my work).

It takes me FOREVER to come down off of the adrenaline high of rushing to meet deadlines. My stomach ties itself in knots, i get a huge headache, and my heart beats super fast while my mind races on endlessly. I ate my lunch, and thankfully, my boss brought me some Oreos as a type of treat to help me ease out of the rush, but it still took another hour or so to come off the adrenaline high. 4 Tylenol later, the headache begins to subside and I try to regain focus and figure out what the next step of action is.

That is a deadline day in a nutshell. They're crazy. I'm really glad they don't happen THAT often, but they do come. I now have 3 more huge projects to work on, along with on-the-side stuff for friends. It's weird because I live for the rush, but the rush kicks my butt!

I seriously have mad respect for all the other people working in publications. Ours isn't big name and it's intense. If I could go up and hug all the people working at big magazines and stuff, I would—they need it!

The good news is that I won 2 tickets to go see AFI at the Showbox tomorrow night! Nothing like an evening of rocking out to start off the weekend, especially after a deadline day. :)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Pablo Picasso

I got my pictures back from the photo lab!

They're definitely interesting ;)

In all fairness, it is my FIRST roll. A lot of them didn't come out so hot because I still haven't mastered the art of winding the film properly. The great news is that I just put in my 2nd roll today and I'm already learning from my mistakes! I figure I can only get better and I'm really looking forward to seeing the progress!

Here are the 5 best pics I have to show . . . the others didn't really come out well. Some of them seriously left me wondering—what was I trying to take a picture of?!?

I hope you like them!

This is my best one, taken from the Space Needle Observation Deck

An arcade game shot taken at the movie theater downtown

Pike Place Market with many exposures

Looking up at the Space Needle


Pike Place Market with the original Starbucks sign

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

You Give Me Something

Have you ever seen those Russian Nesting Dolls? You know, the ones where they have like a doll inside a doll inside a doll and you open each package to get to the next?

Well today I got to experience my own little wonderful russian nesting doll . . . us postal service style.

Let me just say that I seriously bought my tickets for the Jack's Mannequin concert last November! That's 3 months ago! And for the past month, I've been checking the mail like a crazy lady . . . or a sick puppy dog—one of the two, maybe both. I seriously would come home, barely get into the house before I grabbed the mail key and raced back up the driveway to check it. Up until now, I've had to hang my head in disappointment and walk back in, ticketless. But today, that all changed!

I got my ticket to the show!!!

Now the funny part is the packaging in which the ticket came. I mean, I gotta hand it to the people at Ticketmaster, they really know how to protect your ticket. ;)

Here is the main package I got . . .



And then inside that . . .



And then inside that . . .



Hahahaha! Well, it's nice to know my little ticket traveled in style. ;)

I'm seriously SO excited! It really made my stressful day end with a giant smile across my face!

Just think, in 17 days, I get to experience this awesomeness!!












I CAN'T WAIT! whooo hooo!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Connected

I've now added a Tumblr site to my growing list of social networking sites! I don't know if this makes me really really ridiculously cool or really really ridiculously insane. In any event, it should be fun. For the time being, I'll be posting to both. I'll be promoting this as my main site on twitter—trying to do one post a day here to keep up with the good writing habits, but I'll also be posting to my tumblr randomly with little to no notification. So if you would like to bookmark my tumblr, please feel free to do so.

Here's the link: amosays.tumblr.com

I hope everyone is having a GREAT day!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Fields of Gold

It's that time again! What time, you ask? Time for Awards Show season to commence! And who loves Award shows? ME!

Tonight the Golden Globes are on, and in true fashion, I wanted to blog about who the nominees are and who I'm hoping will win. I will also follow up the post with the actual winners of the awards once I've finished watching.

So as always, the information will be below, with my choice highlighted in light blue text, and the winner highlighted in green. Let's see how many I get right ;)

BEST MOTION PICTURE—DRAMA
Avatar
The Hurt Locker
Inglourious Basterds
Precious: Based on the Novel Push By Sapphire
Up In The Air
---- Why I think my pick should win: Because I can watch that movie 9 times in a row and not get sick of it. Because QT is a cinematic genius! Because it reminds me of why I love to write and why I love film so much!

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE—DRAMA
Emily Blunt—The Young Victoria
Sandra Bullock—The Blind Side
Helen Mirren—The Last Station
Carey Mulligan—An Education
Gabourey Sidibe—Precious: Based on the Novel Push By Sapphire
---- Why I think my pick should win: I think any actress who is willing to "go there" in such a deep, powerful role deserves an award. It takes guts, it takes talent, and the fact that I've heard so many stories from friends about how that character changed their perspectives on life, makes me think she's a winner.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE—DRAMA
Jeff Bridges—Crazy Heart
George Clooney—Up In The Air
Colin Firth—A Single Man
Morgan Freeman—Invictus
Tobey Maguire—Brothers
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Because in my opinion, no matter what movie Colin Firth is in, HE WINS! ;)

BEST MOTION PICTURE—COMEDY OR MUSICAL
500 Days of Summer
The Hangover (my pick!)
It's Complicated
Julie & Julia
Nine
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Hilarious cast and a great premise. I heard a LOT of my guy friends liked it, and for them to like a movie as much as they said they did is a big deal.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE—COMEDY OR MUSICAL
Sandra Bullock—The Proposal
Marion Cotillard—Nine
Julia Roberts—Duplicity
Meryl Streep—It's Complicated
Meryl Streep—Julie & Julia (my pick!)
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Because of her role in this movie, Julia Child cookbooks have been resurrected. Also, because she's Meryl Streep and she's just too awesome NOT to receive an award.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE—COMEDY OR MUSICAL
Matt Damon—The Informant!
Daniel Day Lewis—Nine
Robert Downy Jr.—Sherlock Holmes (my pick!)
Joseph Gordon-Levitt—500 Days of Summer
Michael Stuhlbarg—A Serious Man
---- Why I think my pick should win:
What Meryl Streep did for Julia Child, Robert Downy Jr. did for Sherlock Holmes.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MOTION PICTURE
Penelope Cruz—Nine
Vera Farmiga—Up In The Air
Anna Kendrick—Up In The Air
Mo'nique—Precious: Based On The Novel Push By Sapphire (my pick!)
Julianne Moore—A Single Man
---- Why I think my pick should win:
See Best Performance for Actress in a Drama award above. Same reasons!

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MOTION PICTURE
Matt Damon—Invictus
Woody Harrelson—The Messenger
Christopher Plummer—The Last Station
Stanley Tucci—The Lovely Bones
Christoph Waltz—Inglourious Basterds
---- Why I think my pick should win:
See my blog post from yesterday—Stanley Tucci is an actor extraordinaire!

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM:
Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs
Coraline
Fantastic Mr. Fox
The Princess And The Frog
Up (my pick!)
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Up was just a phenomenal movie. People laughed, people cried, and a lot of adults came to the realization that you're never too old to take someone under your wing—SQUIRREL!—and live your dream.

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
Baaria (Italy)
Broken Embraces (Spain)
The Maid [La Nana] (Chile)
A Prophet [Un Prophete] (France)
The White Ribbon [Das Weisse Band—Eine Deutsche Kindergechicte] (Germany) (my pick!)
---- Why I think my pick should win:
It was made in Germany, my motherland ;)

BEST DIRECTOR—MOTION PICTURE
Kathryn Bigelow—The Hurt Locker
James Cameron—Avatar
Clint Eastwood—Invictus
Jason Reitman—Up In The Air
Quentin Tarantino—Inglourious Basterds
---- Why I think my pick should win:
I have a mad crazy film crush on Quentin Tarantino. He completely resurrected what film is all about with this movie—and he didn't need CGI to do it.

BEST SCREENPLAY—MOTION PICTURE
Neill Blomkamp, Terri Tatchell—District 9
Mark Boal—The Hurt Locker
Quentin Tarantino—Inglourious Basterds
Nancy Meyers—It's Complicated
Jason Reitman, Sheldon Turner—Up In The Air
---- Why I think my pick should win:
You can't act your way out of a bad script. I think if I were to ever read the script for Inglorious Basterds, I would feel like I had just won a Golden Globe award. ;p

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE—MOTION PICTURE
Michael Giacchino—Up
Marvin Hamlisch—The Informant!
James Horner—Avatar
Abel Korzeniowski—A Single Man
Karen O and Carter Burwell—Where The Wild Things Are
---- Why I think my pick should win:
The music allows you to feel the movie and this movie's score left me in tears. It was beautiful!


BEST ORIGINAL SONG—MOTION PICTURE
"Cinema Italiano"—Nine
"I See You"—Avatar
"I Want To Come Home"—Everybody's Fine
"The Weary Kind (Theme From Crazy Heart)"—Crazy Heart
"Winter"—Brothers
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Of all the nominees, it's the one I like the most. The fact that Leona Lewis sings it doesn't hurt either. ;)

BEST TELEVISION SERIES—DRAMA
Big Love (HBO)
Dexter (Showtime)
House (Fox)
Mad Men (AMC)
True Blood (HBO)
---- Why I think my pick should win:
I don't know of any other British man who can play a fiesty, sarcastic doctor (or any other character for that matter) better than Hugh Laurie. 3/4ths of America agrees.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A TELEVISION SERIES—DRAMA
Glenn Close—Damages
January Jones—Mad Men
Juliana Margulies—The Good Wife
Anna Paquin—True Blood
Kyra Sedgwick—The Closer
---- Why I think my pick should win:
If her performance on SNL was any indication to her ability to portray a 1960s housewife, then I'm fairly sure she DESERVES the Golden Globe for portraying one on her show. Now, if this was an award for her performance on SNL . . . well, that's a different story . . .

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A TELEVISION SERIES—DRAMA
Simon Baker—The Mentalist
Michael C. Hall—Dexter
Jon Hamm—Mad Men
Hugh Laurie—House
Bill Paxton—Big Love
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Hugh Laurie is the doctor that everyone loves to hate—and I do mean EVERYONE. I'll be really surprised if he doesn't win.

BEST TELEVISION SERIES—COMEDY OR MUSICAL
30 Rock (NBC)
Entourage (HBO)
Glee (FOX) (my pick!)
Modern Family (ABC)
The Office (NBC)
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Unless the voters are living under a rock, no one is immune to the awesomeness that IS Glee. Glee is original, fun, upbeat, and it draws you in. And let's get real, FINN HUDSON is a babe! Okay . . . okay . . CORY MONTEITH is the babe! ;) But I'd HATE to be in the building if Glee doesn't win. Talk about a riot. :|

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A TELEVISION SERIES—COMEDY OR MUSICAL
Toni Collette—United States Of Tara
Courtney Cox—Cougar Town
Edie Falco—Nurse Jackie
Tina Fey—30 Rock
Lea Michele—Glee
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Because anyone who turns down a Broadway carreer to sing No Air on a TV show that brings pure Glee to everyone who watches it deserves an award.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A TELEVISION SERIES—COMEDY OR MUSICAL
Alec Baldwin—30 Rock
Steve Carrell—The Office
David Duchovny—Californication
Thomas Jane—Hugn
Matthew Morrisson—Glee
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Because Steve Carrell is, has, and WILL ALWAYS BE The World's Best Boss. For Real.

BEST MINI-SERIES OR MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION
Georgia O'Keeffe (Lifetime)
Grey Gardens (HBO)
Into The Storm (HBO)
Little Dorritt (PBS)
Taking Chance (HBO)
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Because I like Georgia O'Keeffe . . . and I've never seen the films listed in this category.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MINI-SERIES OR MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION
Joan Allen—Georgia O'Keeffe
Drew Barrymore—Grey Gardens
Jessica Lange—Grey Gardens
Anna Paquin—The Courageous Heart Of Irena
Sigourney Weaver—Prayers For Bobby
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Because she's old and deserves to win an award for staying strong in the industry after so many years . . . and I've never seen the films listed in this category.


BEST PEFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MINI-SERIES OR MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION
Kevin Bacon—Taking Chance
Kenneth Branagh—Wallander: One Step Behind
Chiwetel Ejiofor—Endgame
Brendan Gleeson—Into The Storm
Jeremy Irons—Georgia O'Keeffe
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Because I've never seen any of the films listed in this category . . . but I would LOVE to hear Jeremy Irons give a speech in his thick English accent . . . and I'm secretly hoping he says John McClane like he does in the Die Hard flick even though there's no need for him to. I just love his voice. ;)

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A SERIES, MINI-SERIES, OR A MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION
Jane Adams—Hung
Rose Byrne—Damages
Jane Lynch—Glee
Janet McTeer—Into The Storm
Chloe Sevigny—Big Love
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Because Sue Sylvester is witty and awesome. Because if Sue Sylvester doesn't win, I'd hate to see what she does to the voters. You think being nominated is hard, try auditioning for Baywatch and being told they're moving in a different direction.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A SERIES, MINI-SERIES, OR A MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION
Michael Emerson—Lost
Neil Patrick Harris—How I Met Your Mother
William Hurt—Damages
John Lithgow—Dexter
Jeremy Piven—Entourage
---- Why I think my pick should win:
Because Ben still haunts my nightmares. Him and Stanley Tucci. It's an artform to be a bad guy—and Michael Emerson has mastered it! Plus, it's not like he can win another one anytime soon . . . this is the last season for LOST . . . pardon me. I need to go have a good cry now. :(

And I'll end with this:
I am SO glad that the Cecil B. Demille Award is going to Martin Scorsese. Scorsese is a truly phenomenal filmmaker—an industry king, if you will.

PS: yesterday at the theater, I saw the movie trailer for Shutter Island and I REALLY want to see it. I love me a good psychological thriller! :D

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Like O, Like H


This face will haunt my nightmares for years.
I'm sure of it.


I got to watch The Lovely Bones tonight. I've read the book—I love it! I've now seen the movie—it was WELL done. I want to say I LOVE it cause I really do, but it's been SO long since I saw a movie that made me cry, made me laugh, and made me want to hire a personal bodyguard all in the same film that it leaves me on the fence of 'loved it' and 'was terrified by it.' The cinematography was great and the actors did so great. In fact, Stanley Tucci (who is one of my FAVORITE actors) played his role of the villain, George Harvey SO well that I seriously think I'm gonna have nightmares that he's waiting in the woods to stalk me.

I think Stanley Tucci is one of the MOST AMAZING actors ever—he gives everything he has to portray a character in a way that you forget it's a character, it becomes reality. He's just THAT good.

He's up for a Golden Globe tomorrow night and I'm really hoping he wins. In the meantime, I'm beefing up security in my home and doing a background check on all my neighbors ;)

If you're brave, go see The Lovely Bones . . . it'll help keep the Security Alarm business alive in this recession. ;)

Friday, January 15, 2010

Strange World

I came across the CREEPIEST toy ever today. :(

Just for clarification purposes—I don't really like the toys where you squeeze them and they talk. It's just plain creepy. I have friends and family members who LOVE them, so I've seen and heard my fair share of them. Some of them are mildly bearable. Others are just plain annoying. But this morning as I was picking up cold medicine and throat drops from Bartells Drug Store (yes, I think I've got the beginnings of a cold . . . *sigh*) I came across this little guy in the Valentine's promotional aisle. It's a stuffed rat that talks, nay, shouts that it likes you. It's creepy. :(

Here's the vid to prove it:



For the record, if anyone (much less a guy I was dating) ever got that for me, I'd glare at them, walk away, leaving the rat to tumble from my hand to the ground. We'd also probably never speak again. It's just too creepy. :(

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Moment Of Surrender


I got a present for myself yesterday and it's QUITE delightful!

It's a french press! :D

I also bought some of my favorite coffee to go in it—
Starbucks Casi Cielo blend.

It's seriously so yum!

The first time I ever had coffee in a french press was by accident. I was at the Starbucks in Ballard one day and I wanted just regular drip coffee. I saw that there was a new blend on the board and it was called Casi Cielo. I asked for a cup of it. The barista said that they didn't have it in the pre-brewed dispenser, but if I was willing to wait a couple minutes, he would make me a french press of it for free, and that it was enough for two cups, as opposed to one. Being the coffee lover I am, I waited for the french press Casi Cielo. It was SO delicious!!! It's so rich and has a fresher taste than drip. I was sold on it after the first few sips :) I've been meaning to get a french press of my own for almost 6 months now, but I've continued to push it to the back-burner until a more opportune time (financially) and it came! I am now the proud owner of a beautiful device that makes delicious rich coffee :) Now I just just have to buy other blends to try in it. My top 5 favorite coffee blends that I will try in it:

5. Starbucks Espresso Roast

4. Caffe Vivace Espresso Dolce Blend

3. Starbucks Pike Place Special Reserve

2. Caffe Ladro Queen Anne Blend

1. Stumptown Hairbender Blend

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

New Fang

^ You see these guys?? ^

They live at the mall . . . in the kiosk aisle . . . and I'm deathly afraid of them! You know, they're the kiosk workers who are like super aggressive about you trying their awesome nail buffer stuff on one hand, leaving you to walk around like a dork with one hand buffed and the other clearly not, just so you can buy their product, which you can get cheaper elsewhere—yeah, them.

Look, I get that our society is one of give and take, and I'm all about helping re-stimulate the economy, really I am. I am not however, all about being hounded to buy a Sprint phone when I already have a T—Mobile phone that I pay zilch for. I politely say no, and they're like, "Let me show you 900 ways that our phone is better than your current one." And then I pass the Verizon kiosk and they have 901 ways that their phone is better than mine. What they don't seem to understand is that NO THANK YOU means "Heck no, with a cherry on top."

The only reason I don't like going to the mall alone is because of the kiosk vultures. They're there, they're aggressive, and they're not taking NO for an answer . . . which sucks, cause it's the only one I have for them. I don't need Proactiv. I don't need hair extensions. I don't need Foakleys. I don't need a train set. I don't need a calendar of Robert Pattinson . . . wait. strike that. i DO need that . . . but anyway. The point still stands—they're ruthless!

It is so bad for me. I seriously look at them, and I see them as vultures, gritting their beaks in anticipation, honing in for the kill. And I get this overwhelming urge to run through the middle aisle of the mall and hide in Abercrombie, where the strong near-nakie models will protect me with their overwhelming Abercrombie Suntan Stench. Instead, I call up friends and/or family members and talk to them while I briskly walk by, avoiding contact with the beasts of burden staring me down. I hold conversation until I'm in the clear zone, near the less intrusive kiosks . . . you know, like the Ugg Boots kiosk and the Hair Club for Men kiosk—they're harmless.

Maybe one day I'll overcome this fear, but in the meantime, I've got you on speed dial! ;)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Whatcha Say

Great news! I got to borrow Gina's guitar to record 2 new songs! Well, one is old but I recorded it for the first time. The other is a new one that I'm actually going to re-record because it didn't turn out quite the way I wanted it to, but I'll post it eventually. :D

After posting about singing Mayday for my co-workers at our office holiday party, (see here) a handful of friends and family have asked to hear it. So, I figured I would oblige and post it here today.

Again, I'm NOT a singer, just a writer, but it's very therapeutic for me to share these songs that I've written with you, my readers :D

I hope it speaks to you in some way.





MAYDAY

Chorus:
Mayday. Mayday.
You say Everyone's as comfortable as you
But baby
Someday
You'll see that tomorrow is up to you

Fingers on the smoking gun
Everyone is trying to run
Away
Let the rhythm take control
Take you to a place where you know
There's a star, a ray of hope
and everyone's the same

Chorus

Laser lights and telegrams
Try to define who I am
Alright. Alright.
Let the damage take it's toll
Move beyond and then you know
There's a goal, a common thread
and everyone's alive

The tracks for trains racing away
They call you melancholy
But every day is a brand new way
and your chance to sway and

Chorus

Tomorrow's up to you
And you know just what to do.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Girl Can't Help It

Once upon a time there was a trickster named Amanda. Most of her friends knew how much of a ruthless schemer she was. One day, her friend Kellie left her Facebook logged on while she went to run an errand. Now, Amanda, being the schemer she is, decided it was a prime opportunity to change Kellie's personal information on her account—you know, little things . . . like her relationship status and her birthdate.

The funny thing is that the next day, when Kellie checked her Facebook, she was flooded with Happy Birthday wishes. She frustratedly changed her information back and cursed Amanda for having changed the information. Amanda was very proud of herself, but in true trickster fashion, was not satisfied. She proceeded to clue everyone in on a great joke that everyone should wish Kellie a Happy Birthday EVERY DAY! Most everyone who knew, participated as they remembered, taking random moments each day to flood her with Birthday wishes—even on missions trips and travel trips!

Fast forward 2 years and the fun still rolls on! Amanda tries really hard to remember as often as possible to continue to remind Kellie that birthdays should be very happy, especially hers. The thing that's REALLY funny is that Kellie still reacts to it the same way, thus feeding the sneaky little trickster flame burning inside of Amanda. In fact, Kellie once claimed that she wasn't going to give it any attention—this ended in a 50+ back and forth comment thread on a Facebook photo. The fun just never ends!

Here is some recent goodness:




But the best one EVER is this one:



I'd be lying if I said I didn't have a huge, proud grin spread across my face from ear to ear ;)

PS: If you are a friend of Kellie's on Facebook, you should definitely wish her a Happy Birthday today . . . and the next day . . . and the next day . . . mwahahahahaha ;D

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Behind A Smile



You know, if Seth Meyers was just 10 years younger, I'd find a way to make him mine! He's hilarious!

I'm a fan of most of the current SNL cast, but i ALWAYS look forward to Weekend Update with Seth! Here's one of my favorite parts from last night:



But by far, my favorite Weekend Update will (most likely) forever be the Balloon from Colorado:



Ohhh Seeeeeettth . . . it was a hoax.

Classic.

And just for kicks, here's my favorite clip from last night's show. It's the commercial for Peeper's Insurance—Bill Hader is SO fantastically creepy in this one!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Again

For the past 2 weeks, Flyleaf has been playing non-stop on my iPod. I will admit that this past year, I opened up to a bit more of the pop and hip-hop music that's been blasting through the iTunes Top Charts. But have no fear, my dear friends, I am a ROCK chick all the way! ;)

I've watched the music video for Flyleaf's AGAIN at least once a day for the past few weeks as well. Here it is for your viewing pleasure:



I gotta admit—when it comes to girl crushes for me, it's a tie between Flyleaf's Lacey Mosley and Kat Von D. Just sayin'. Those are two AMAZING and gorgeous chicks!

Lacey just has such awesome style, a STELLAR voice—i mean, really, how does such a powerful sound come from someone SO LITTLE—and the chick can ROCK!

Mesh all of that together with powerful lyrics and a super-artsy music video and that's what I call a winner! I'll just say this: When this song comes on my iPeezy, I shred on the air guitar! There is also a lot of dancing and head-banging going on. I LOVE IT!


BONUS CONTENT: My 2nd favorite song lately by Flyleaf> SET APART THIS DREAM

(PS: this is NOT the music video for Set Apart This Dream)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Breakeven

I'm looking back on all the life that you gave me
And I've never felt more alive
No words explain all the ways that you changed me
The way you made wrong things right

There will be days that I'm barely hanging on
And then I'll think of you, and you and me
But when everything has turned shades of gray
You still color the world around me

-Color the World by Amanda Martinez


Last night was very eventful—and I'm not just talking about the football game. For the past few weeks, one of my co-worker's husband has been in critical condition in the ICU with some serious organ failure due to a bout with Hepatitis C. Yesterday at the end of the work day, we got the call that she was going to take him off of life support. A bunch of my co-workers were going to be going to the hospital to be with her in that moment. In the grand scheme of things, I'd never met her husband and she and I were not especially close—but I knew I needed to be there. No one should die alone, and no one should have to go through the death of a loved one alone. She needed people she could cry with, share memories with, and just BE with. I wanted her to know that I was there for her.

A bunch of us showed up and suited up (so that we wouldn't catch any diseases from her dying husband) and surrounded my co-worker with love and support. It was one of the most powerful displays of affection and family I'd seen in a while. My co-worker's husband's family was not very close and so very few of them showed up (even during the course of the hospitalization). Our entire staff was there, save for two people who had colds and therefore couldn't join us. We were their family—and it showed.

I got to watch an amazing woman express her love and honor to this wonderful man who had an uncanny way of making her come alive, and come out of hiding. I loved watching her love and care for him while we were there, caressing his pallid bony skin and bragging about how handsome he still is. I think one of the sweeter moments for me was when she turned directly to me and said,

"Amanda, I wish you two could have met. Ray would have loved you and loved spending time with you. He would've loved your big heart and your witty sense of humor and he would have loved hearing you sing your songs."

She didn't say it as an off-the-cuff nicety. She meant it and it caught my attention. It's not so much the accolades that caught my attention, but the fact that she, having known and loved this man, could speak for him with such certainty—she knew him that well. It moved my heart. So I wrote about it—I've included some of the first round lyrics (Color The World) at the top of the post. I'm still working on the song, but being in that room, witnessing that tender honest love inspired me that true love is, in fact, not lost. It is waiting, and I'll be ready when it shows it's lovely face. :)

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Eyes of Texas Are Upon You


You see that? It's the state of Texas!

What's really interesting is that I learned how to draw that in Elementary School. They actually taught us how to draw our state. Surprisingly enough, I never considered taking any extra time to perfect it, so it looks like an Elementary School kid drew it. :p It does come in real handy when you're trying to explain to someone how far away from Austin other cities, like San Antonio, Houston, Dallas, and Wichita Falls are.

I'm sure that even if you're not from there, you've heard of it. We Austinites/Texans try to make sure you do. ;)

Today is a BIG day for that great state! It's the BCS National Championship Game Day! Now, although I know how to draw the state of Texas, I kind of always failed more when it came to drawing the Longhorn logo. It's tougher than it looks. See . . .


Now, if it's one thing that you've probably gathered from following my blog, it's that I know next to NOTHING about sports, football in particular. It's not that I've never watched a game. I mean, c'mon, I was in the Colorguard in High School. Games were mandatory. What is Colorguard, you ask? We're the people who wave flags and march with the band. See below:


Yep. I was a flag girl! I actually quite enjoyed it.

So, having been to every football game and still not understanding what the game is all about or how it's played, you might be wondering why I even care so much about the big game tonight. The answer is simple: I'm a downhome Austinite and I'm not dumb. Let's put it this way . . . when I was in Colorguard, we had the opprotunity to march in the parade to celebrate Ricky Williams winning the Heisman Trophy. Because of my grades, I wasn't able to actually go—no pass, no play :( But even then, I KNEW it was a huge deal. I was proud of my city. I was proud of our team and proud of Ricky Williams. I don't really cheer for football teams, but if it's one I feel at least mildly comfortable cheering for, it's the Texas Longhrons :D I mean, c'mon, try being part of my family and NOT being a Longhorn fan:


It just does not work ;)

So I'm really excited for the game. I most likely won't know what in the world is going on, but when Texas makes a touchdown, I'll get really excited :D

Also, Switchfoot is playing the tailgate pre-show and I REALLY hope they show footage of that! :D

In the meantime, sing it with me . . .

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

She Paints Me Blue

LOOK! I 'Avatarized' myself!

This morning in Cafe Ladro, all the baristas were talking about Avatar. For the record, I haven't seen it. I've heard & read mixed reviews. I will probably see it this weekend, though, just to form my own opinion. But hearing them talk about it cracks me up!

Mainly, their conversation was based on how fake Sam Worthington's English accent was (since he's from Australia) and how Michelle Rodriguez should have had all her scenes cut. They then jumped on the subject of LOST and how bad she sucked in LOST. I believe the exact quote was:

What was her name on that show again?

For those who can't remember, it was Ana Lucia, and yeah she wasn't my fave either. But now that they said that about her character in Avatar, the combination of my dislike of her LOST character and their dislike of her Avatar character will most likely make it hard for me to like her scenes in the movie.

In other news, I came across this yesterday when I was reading reviews. :D

It's David Letterman's . . .

Top Ten Things Overheard In Line To See "Avatar"
10."What a coincidence! I couldn't find a woman to go with me either!"
9."If I wear my 3-D glasses over my 2-D glasses, can I see in 5-D?"
8."It's nice that they didn't overhype this thing"
7."Last time I saw blue creatures for three hours, I drank too much Nyquil"
6."It's set in the year 2154 when America finally passes a health care bill"
5."Which one is Chewbacca?"
4."Based on a true story, right?"
3."Hold on -- Tiger's texting me"
2."Chuck Schumer just called the ticket taker a b—"
1."$500 million for a movie -- recession's over!"

Go ahead, you can laugh. ;)