2013 Oscars Recap, Part 1

When I say the Oscars got off to a bad start last night, I am actually just talking (Anne Hathaway style) about myself. 

(Yeah--best to just open up with my stance on the Great Anne Hathaway Debate. Do not like.) 

Anyway, I had crucially burned some popcorn on my stove immediately prior to the telecast, and as I ran through the house opening windows, turning on fans, clearing smoke, and eventually re-popping popcorn (because I'm not a QUITTER who would abandon her plan for a completely nutrition-less dinner at the first sign of a setback), I caught only snippets of the opening monologue. So for that first 15 minutes or so, I thought my questions (huh? is that William Shatner? Why is Seth McFarlane so obsessed with whether he is a bad host? Are they singing an entire song about boobs?) all had perfectly logical answers that I was just missing because I was only catching bits and pieces from the giant burnt popcorn kernel that was my kitchen.

WELL. I got my act together by 8:45 PM; the show never did. As Richard Rushfield articulates nicely here, the 2013 Oscars were odd, awkward, and tonally schizophrenic: dramatic musical numbers tied together by an ever-thinning thread of Desperate Seth McFarlane.

And that's really all I have to say about the show in general. Let's get to the winners, losers, and, the in-betweeners.

WINNERS

Charlize Theron
Charlize theron
Great dress, but Charlize's natural poise/striking hair took the look to iconic level.

Jessica Chastain
Jessica chastain
This was a great hair night* all around, and Chaz (yeah, I'm calling her Chaz, it's a thing) was best-of-the-best for me. As I tweeted at the time:

*Except for the BUNS, which we will GET TO LATER

Naomi Watts

Naomi watts

Made good on what proved to be a hit-or-miss night for metallics. The cutout is totally what January Jones wishes she was pulling off when she wears kooky stuff that doesn't quite work this well. 

Sally Field

Sally field

Sally is too cute, and I loved this. Great dress, great hair. 

Quvenzhané Wallis

Q wallis
PUPPY PURSE! I was obvs enchanted by Quvenzhané's accessory of choice; I have since learned that this is kind of her thing and she has worn different ones to each major awards show. Now you know how to make an absolutely endearing nine-year-old kid even more endearing.

Adele

Adele
Won an Oscar, worked the stage, and eschewed her usual kooky/frumpy looks in favor of something a bit more glamorous--her best award show look yet. Nitpick: don't like the hair. MUCH preferred it down during her performance.

Jennifer and Ben

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Loved Jen's dress, makeup, hair, AND jewelry. My initial reaction was that she could have done more dramatic makeup, but in retrospect, this was perfect--especially considering it was Ben's night and not hers.

Speaking of which, love the beard on Director Ben. 

Kerry Washington

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Count me among the fans of this color/style. The metallic accent was in keeping with the trend of the night, so the coral color didn't seem too out there. Strong showing.

Up next: Part 2.


2013 Grammy Awards: YAY FOR TACKY CRAP

I'm lacking the time to put together a proper recap today, but I just can't miss the opportunity to praise some of the delightfully tacky outfits from last night's Grammy red carpet.

The past few rounds of Oscars, Globes, and Emmys have had plenty of looks both beautiful and bad, but tacky is its own, specific breed. Tacky isn't so much about wearing a bad outfit--it's about wearing a jubilantly inappropriate one. Like everyone else knew it was an awards show and you thought it was a Dress Like a Human My Little Pony Contest.

Kate pierson
Looking at you, Kate Pierson of the B-a52s. Loooooking at you.

Tacky is never lazy. Tacky takes work. Tacky means spending hours lovingly dying a Rapunzel hair extension in Kool Aid while you wait for your chainmail.com order to arrive. Tacky takes effort.

Bonnie mckee
Tacky is elusive. It reminds you of something, but offers its own spin. Tacky is John Mayer channeling Willy Wonka channeling John Mayer back again.

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Tacky is knowing everyone has heard your voice over and over again all year and giving them miles of sheerness and tulle and saying, "HERE'S EVEN MORE ME. YOU'RE WELCOME."

Kimbra
Tacky is whatever this is on whoever this is.

Whoever
Tacky is the leg slit on the shapeless dress that doesn't even look good with the hair that even looks worse, making it clear that you chose this look not because you liked the designer, but because you like your own bod more than anything that can be made out of mere fabric.

JLo
Ain't nothin' wrong with that.

Tacky is sophisticated 70s Mother Nature realness served with a side of This Face, All Night, Because You're Damn Right I'm Serious.

Katy perry
Tacky is Taylor. You know I'm right.

Tay
Tacky is great. I miss tacky. Tacky will outlast the careers of all of these people. Tacky is timeless. And you can never go wrong with a classic.

P.S. Tacky is a blog post that uses the T-word 25 times. Sorry I'm not sorry.


Golden Globes 2013, cont.: The Good

(Continued from here.)

I don't have as much to say about these as I did about the bad (criticism just flows much more freely; it's one of my gifts). But for the sake of balance, here's who I liked.

KATE HUDSON 

Hudson

I love when a celeb seems to come out of nowhere looking randomly fabulous. For me, that was K-Hud last night, and she may have even been my choice for best-dressed overall. She succeeded with some of the trends where others failed (cutout, plunging gleavage, a lotta shit on yo neck) and looked generally spectacular.
JENNIFER GARNER
Garner
Every time the camera hit JG I thought she looked radiant. Photograph doesn't do this one justice (it kind of sparkled and shimmered on video and, presumably, in person), but you get the point.

TINA AND AMY
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Looking good and having fun. Tina's hair looked amazing, and I fully support her becoming a hair icon if she so chooses.
GLENN CLOSE

Close
Liked the dress; loved the hair.

 JENNIFER LAWRENCE

Jennifer-lawrence-435

This was a big night for her, and she came off as charming and funny. This dress didn't wow me, but I thought it was a solid choice.
SALMA HAYEK
Hayek
If you're gonna do a bow, this is the way to do it while still being glamorous (cough RACHEL WEISZ cough).
JESSICA ALBA
Alba
Bright and pretty. Great hair, great necklace, and a wacky, fuzzy bag to make it fun.

More of the good . . .

  • Julianne Moore: wasn't crazy about that beehive, tho
  • Amanda Seyfried: pretty
  • Sally Field: just too cute
  • Kerry Washington: stylish; if you're gonna do that sheer drop skirt thing then this is the preferred route (cough RACHEL WEISZ AGAIN cough)
  • Claire Danes: her hair continues to be great; she looks awesome in a good-but-not-even-great dress

That's all. I'm sure I missed some on both sides, and I will blame any oversights on DayQuil haze and the fact that all day I have been approximately this.


Golden Globes 2013: The Good and The Bad

Last night's Golden Globes were one of my favorite awards shows in a while. The hosting was good, the speeches were largely non-boring, and there enough odd/wacky moments peppered throughout to keep it interesting. (Here is a decent top 7 on said moments.)

I've split my fashion recap into two categories: the good and the bad.* We'll start with the bad and work our way up.

THE BAD

JENNIFER LOPEZ

J lo
It says a lot about J-Lo that this is basically predictable attire for her. That being said, it doesn't quite rate as boring because it is a full-length nude bodystocking doily thing made of that super unsexy figure skater illusion material. Anyway, the prevailing commentary here was "Jennifer is basically naked," but I raise you two points: 1) she probably would have looked better naked; and 2) she certainly would have been able to move better. Watching celebs mince around uncomfortably is enough to kill even the best look, so it so it certainly doesn't do any favors for a bad one.

RACHEL WEISZ

Weisz
Tip: if you're on James Bond's arm then the bottom of your dress shouldn't remind me of a beekeeper. I mean, hell, if you're on anyone's arm (except a guy in a bee costume), then this rule applies. Also, polka dots always look twee/informal to me and bows frequently do, so overall this was Budget Marion Cotillard at best and Rachel needn't settle for that.

LENA DUNHAM

Dunham
I like Lena and do not count myself among the Girls haters; however, heavy folds of fabric in a blah color--not my fave. Sadly, Lena also had a bad case of I-Can't-Move-In-This-Itis. During her two excruciating trips to the stage I watched this dress pull her down like it was quicksand as she hobbled forth on what appears to have been a very nonfunctional shoe choice. The entire telecast seemed to come to a screeching halt as the world prepared itself for a faceplant.

TAYLOR SWIFT

Swift
Boring dress that looks like off-the-rack prom attire paired with ultra-severe hair and makeup: not the most approachable look I've seen on Tay Swift. I don't want to hate on this young lady, but . . . ohhhhh. I guess I do.

KALEY CUOCO

Cuoco
All my criticisms of this outfit shall be rescinded if, in three months' time, it is revealed that the verymethod Ms. Cuoco was just selected for the titular role(s) in an Olsen twin biopic.

ADELE
Adele
Adele had one of the best speeches of the night--quick, funny, unpretentious--but her award show wardrobe is just one heavy, black dress after another. For someone who seems to have a much lighter side than her earlier work would have us expect, her wardrobe is consistenly bleak. Let's see some color and maybe even some skin at some point, plz?

JESSICA CHASTAIN

ChastainShe seems great, and I love her hair and makeup, but this dress was perhaps the most awkwardly-fitting choice of the night.

SIENA MILLER

Miller
Soooooo. Siena here just played Tippi Hendren in The Girl and I suppose this is a nod to '60s style, but here's a thought: if that's what you're going for, why not do one of the five million more glamorous '60s looks available than 'fat lady housedress?'

More of the bad . . .

  • Eva Longoria: overwrought; also, choose either the slit or the cleavage, not both (Em pointed this one out and I agree)
  • Halle Berry: just a casual "what the hell" and let's move on
  • Emily Mortimer: baked potato, chainmail, Tin Man, etc.
  • Alyssa Milano: more like Mila-NOooooooooo, amirite? high five

Next up: The Good

*Confession: Originally I was going to do a third category, The Boring, but (shockingly!) I got bored.


Let's Talk Panda

Against, considerable odds, there is a new baby panda cub in DC as of last night. Per WaPo:

The National Zoo’s female giant panda gave birth to a cub Sunday night, stunning and delighting zoo officials and sparking a new wave of panda mania in Washington seven years after the zoo’s only other cub was born in 2005.

The cub was born at 10:46 p.m. to Mei Xiang, the zoo said, and curator Becky Malinsky happened to be watching the 24-hour-a-day panda camera feed and heard the first squealing of the newborn.

PHO-09Mar30-156234
Mei Xiang is just as suprised as you are.

In celebration/appreciation, a few panda links are most certainly in order. First off, here is some previous LMNOPanda coverage:

Elsewhere:

P.S.: The giant panda cub's birth came just one day after International Red Panda Day, meaning the butter-stick sized baby already has at least one epic upstage under his belt.


BERETKING NEWS: US Announces 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony Outfits

Last night I tweeted this pic of the newly-announced US 2012 Summer Olympic Opening Ceremony outfits by Ralph Lauren:

2012
Since several fellow Olympic enthusiasts/ankle sock non-enthusiasts tweeted me back immediately with comments on its ability to somehow be both dictator AND flight attendant in inspiration, I am following up with a bit more info/some thoughts.

Let's go with the "bulleted list in no particular order" method:
  • Minus the berets, I have no real problems with the guy outfit. It's preppy and patriotic and very Ralph Lauren. I'm not sure there's a lonnnnng list of real-life situations to wear white pants and white shoes, but it's the Olympics, people. Go big or go home.
  • Speaking of "very Ralph Lauren," I'm pretty sure the RL logo on the blazer is bigger than the USA insignia. Good thinking, guys: remind the other countries about capitalism.
  • Classy tie.
  • The girl outfits. Oy, the girl outfits. That skirt is just wrong. Worn with a blazer and at that length, it has has to be a pencil style to be even remotely flattering, but that's all a moot point if it still ends in ANKLE SOCKS. What was the mentality there? "Let's pick something juvenile that also makes the leg look horrendously fat. Yep, there we go. Ankle sock. Boom."
  • Scarf is jaunty, patriotic and totally approp. No complaints there.
  • OK. 
  • I'm ready.
  • To talk.
  • About.
  • THE BERET. 
  • Berets are considered the wheelhouse of a scant number of populations, to include "military/police/dictator" and "stereotyped French caricature." I have to assume we aren't going for any of those inspirations, so the only logical conclusion is that these are supposed to look good. This Slate piece does a good enough job of explaining why that is not the case, so you can rely on that or just, you know, YOUR EYEBALLS to understand why the beret is not super attractive. All I can add is that if I had trained my entire life to represent the absolute pinnacle of success in my chosen athletic field and was then handed a BERET to wear in front of the entire watching world mere days before the biggest competitive moment of my life, I'd be pretty fired up. And maybe that, folks, is the Ralph Lauren endgame: fueled by beret rage (aka "berage"), our US Olympians will experience heretofore-unknown amounts of adrenaline and rocket to the top of the podium faster than you can say "oops, I misplaced my hat. Bummer." You heard it hear first, people: expect record-setting numbers of gold medals this year.

Ralph Lauren is actually selling an Olympic collection featuring pieces of these outfits. So FYI, ladies: you can get the blazer for $598, the shirt for $198, the skirt for $498, shoes for $165, scarf for $58 and the beret at a comparative steal for $55.

So if you're a huge Olympics fan and have an extra $1,572 lying around, know what you should do?

YOU SHOULD GO TO THE OLYMPICS.

AND NOT BUY THIS OUTFIT.

In conclusion: still love the Olympics. Still love America. Still hate berets and ankle socks. World: keep turning.

 


World's Ugliest Dog Competition Continues to Prove that I am Incapable of Thinking Dogs Aren't Cute

Like the Oscars, Grammys, or a BOGO sale on Triscuits, the annual World's Ugliest Dog competition is one of those things I consider to be this blog's journalistic wheelhouse. So when I saw this picture of the 2012 winner, Mugly, I GOT HERE AS FAST AS I COULD.

Mugly
Soooo . . . THIS GUY. First off, Mugly is a great name. The British/Union Jack theme is first class and, with the coming London Olympics, extremely timely. I think what really wins me over in this pic is his ramrod posture and stoic facial expression. He's a little soldier of ugly. And this fight is totes worth fighting.

Here is a shot of the little guy's amazing facial hair. We call this style 'the broken tennis racket:'

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Overall, on my comprehensive ranking of ugly dogs, I would probably put him between Nana and Rascal.

Here are a few pics of some of Mugly's competition:

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  1. This is clearly just a human t-shirt withan extra hole cut in the middle.
  2. My dog and my roommate's dog have NO idea of the consequences of me seeing this picture. But they will. Soon.
146709000_8

I would believe you if you told me those sausage links were actually coming out of this dog as yet another of his deformities. (P.S.: Yes, eagle eye, that is former winner RASCAL)

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This dog was confused and thought it was an Adrien Brody lookalike contest. 

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Well, I happen to think this lil guy is adorable. Which makes him a TERRIBLE COMPETITOR! 

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Grovie the pug has seen some things. Like a mirror. (JK he's adorableeee)

There are more pics here and after looking at them, "attend World's Ugliest Dog Competition" is now Sharpied onto my list of things to do in life. 


Hi, I Made a Craft

I thought these lanterns made out of spaghetti sauce jars were pretty nifty, so I used what I had lying around (IKEA Rajtan spice jars I bought years ago and never used) to create a mini version:

DSC_0588

(My picnic table is rustic, not dirty.)

The basic method is to paint the inside with glass paint (use a brush), and then bloop some gold paint on the outside in a design (use an applicator tip). Read the link for more detailed instructions and to see that I did not invent the term 'blooping.'

DSC_0590

This paint color was called Amber and it was on clearance, probably because Amber the musician has not been cool since the '90s.

DSC_0591
This color was called "Prussian Blue" and it was also on clearance, but that makes more sense because Prussia doesn't exist anymore.

DSC_0592
This is a mixture of the other two colors. We will call it Ottoman Empire Green so that some day it can be on clearance, too.

Here they are with some tea lights shoved in, although frankly this picture didn't turn out amazing:

DSCN1224
But you get the idea, and you can tell how mini they are. I think I might prefer the tiny size--which is good, because it would have taken me like nine years to eat three jars of spaghetti sauce.

If you want to try it, I have one tip to offer. The glass paint went on really gloopily the first time I tried it, so I recommend using only a tiny bit on your brush at a time and only doing a second coat (if desired) when the first is dry.