61 entries categorized "Just Being Mean"

Gifts for the Person Who Has Everything Except a Crappy Watch

Amazon.com occaasionally sends me very helpful marketing e-mails that say things like "Dear Lauren, as someone who has shopped before for books about dogs, you obviously have hands, so here are some suggestions of other things you might like, such as tennis balls and steak knives, which also require hands to use."  It is because of such an e-mail that I was today informed of the existence of something called "Whimsical Watches,"  which are watches for people with various hobbies.  Here is an example:

This one is obviously for people who participate in the hobby known as "looking down at your wrist and seeing a bunch of ugly violins that should not be there."  Just kidding, it is for people who play the violin.  And it is just one of many hideous-but-specific watch choices available in this particular product line.

Yes, there are Whimsical Watches for every type of enthusiast and profession--and when I say that, I mean literally. Every. Single. One.  Don't believe me?  Check out the 765 choices yourself.  Or, just allow me to present you with a few highlights.


This is the "Teen Girl" themed watch.  It accurately conveys the most important aspects of the teenage girl experience: sassy posing, pink accessories, lipstick, and a dollar bill.  Wearing it will also help a teenage girl gain another important teenage experience: being humiliated.


This watch is for people who really, really, really like turtles.  Like this kid.

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My favorite thing about the doctor and lawyer watches?  They both feature the same gigantic red, corded phone--obviously a staple of any respectable medical or legal professional.


The veterinarian watch includes a cat, a dog, a thing that says "Worm" on it, and what appears to be a syringe full of blood.  Sounds about right.


This watch features a pig in a tuxedo and says "What a Ham!" on it.  OK, this one is actually awesome.

Finally, if you don't believe me when I say there is a Whimsical Watch for EVERYTHING, allow me to present:



So yeah, it should go without saying that you are all getting croquet watches for Christmas.  You're welcome.

Now I Really Want My Own World Record

I thought the World's Longest Handshake record seemed easily breakable, but that's nothing compared to the crap new record that was set yesterday in New York for the World's Largest Hot Chocolate.  The record setting cup came in at (ironic drum roll, please) . . .

FOUR GALLONS.  This is an actual picture of it:

It's pathetic, right?  Don't answer.  I already know this.  You know how I know?  BECAUSE ANY RECORD I CAN BREAK BY DUMPING 12 PACKETS OF SWISS MISS INTO A FULL BATHTUB IS PATHETIC.

Basically, People Magazine's Pet Website Needs an Ombudsman

I believe I have mentioned here before that I think People Pets is the most ridiculous site on the entire Internet.  The site is notable because, even in a category that is already ridiculous--dog and cat news--it is extra inane.  Take today, for example; amid such major stories as "Larry the 70-Year-Old Lobster Will Not Be Eaten" and "Pious Pooch Attends Church Twice a Week," the site boldly featured a slide show entitled, "Pets That Look Like Vanna White!"

Now, it might just be me, but I think that if you are going to feature something as absurd as a gallery of pets looking like Vanna White, you should really deliver on the premise.  Sadly, the slide show in question does not.  Let's take a closer look at why.

These are the two photos that start off the slideshow.  You'll note that the resemblance here is not uncanny, but it's not terrible.  I would think that if Vanna White were a dog, she would be a smiley retriever-type like this.  So there is, at the very least, enough integrity in the first comparison that you go into the second slide with your hopes up.  But then . . . 

. . . You see this.  A picture of Vanna White holding an umbrella next to a picture of a black cat THAT LOOKS NOTHING WHATSOEVER LIKE VANNA WHITE, also under an umbrella.  Evidently the fact that the two images share the presence of an umbrella is supposed to be enough to sustain the theme of the slideshow, but come ON--the umbrellas don't even look like each other.  We are at the second photo, and already this slide show is phoning it in in a major way.

It gets worse with the third slide, and this crocheting cat.  People Pet's editors clearly had to go back 20 years to find a picture of Vanna to include in comparison, and she's not even crocheting--she's knitting.  At this point, the credibility of the slide show has already eroded beyond repair.
This slide is clearly the best since No. 1, due to such factors as the angle of the photograph, inclusion of sunglasses, and the slightly similar bangs Vanna and the dog seem to be rocking.  It constitutes the second valid inclusion in the entire slideshow, though it is in no way enough to redeem it.

Another photo, another complete erosion of the premise of the slide show.  Notice the caption: "'One-year-old Puppy flips on his back and sticks his paws up like a little bunny,' shares mom Judith Ohanian of Sunrise, Fla."  Which means that even Judith of Sunrise, Fla., who is stupid enough to send a photo of her dog into People Pets, is not stupid enough to compare said dog with Vanna White.  A bunny, yes; Vanna, no.  EVEN THOUGH THEY BOTH, AT ONE TIME IN THEIR LIVES, POINTED TOWARDS A CAMERA.
This is the photo I am presuming sparked the idea for this entire godawful photo gallery.  Somewhere in a stack of photo submissions, someone saw this dog pointing at a TV playing Wheel of Fortune and thought, "Well, we have a million photos of dogs and cats.  There are also probably a million photos of Vanna White out there, because she's been on TV for the past 20 years. Clearly, according to the 'Enough Monkeys and Enough Typewriters' Rule, there has got to be enough material out there to cobble together a slideshow comparing them." 

Guess what?
That was an incorrect assumption.

In conclusion, People Pets' slideshow of pets that look like Vanna White contains two pets that kind of look like Vanna White, one pet that is kind of acting like Vanna White, and FOUR pets that fail to demonstrate anything more than the weakest notional resemblance to being like Vanna White, or in the same room as something she was once also in the same room as.  This, to me, does not constitute grounds for a slide show; rather, it indicates the need for much greater accountability at the highest levels of the People Pets editorial structure.

Teen Choice Awards Fashion Recap

The Teen Choice Awards were earlier this week, but it has taken me several days to get an appropriate fashion recap together.  This is probably because I am old.

Lil' Mama
While 90% of American teens are overdoing it with the whole emo trend, Lil' Mama has decided to instead overdo it with the lesser-known emu trend.  What a difference a vowel makes.

Drake Bell
I have never heard of this Drake Bell person before.  This means that literally EVERYTHING I know about him is that (1) he exists; and (2) he owns flowered velvet flare pants.  So, I would say that Drake Bell and I are not off to a good start.

Jordana Brewster
I am not entirely sure why Jordana Brewster was at this event.  I am entirely sure that her dress looks like a full-body sports bra.

Kristen Stewart
I would make fun of this look, but it actually incorporates two of my favorite trends: frowning, and metal shark teeth.

Rumer Willis
So, I have this style rule.  It's actually pretty simple: a good dress should not remind anyone of the phrase "massive dandruff."  This dress breaks that rule.

These guys
So . . . these guys just look like a bunch of dweebs.

Vanessa Hudgens


I don't know why, but I can't shake the feeling that the bottom half of this dress would look better as a hat.  On a monkey.

I Almost Started an "Atrocities" Category Just for This Post

There are very few non-controversial beliefs in this world, but one particular truth that meets the distinction is the fact that fanny packs are freaking atrocious.  Sure, there are about 84 people remaining out of Earth's 6+ billion people who still wear them, but that's about as small a minority as you can get on a planet the size of ours.  There are more people than that who still believe the Earth is flat.

So yes, fanny packs are near-universally regarded as ugly.  But even so, you have to admit: they are at least practical.  In theory, it is convenient in some situations to have your belongings safely zippered away and within easy reach while leaving your hands and arms free to dance at the New Kids on the Block concert.  Aesthetic concerns aside, it does sort of make sense.  However, you know what is not practical?

The Cap-sac.
The Cap-sac is a new product that is essentially a fanny pack for the head.  It consists of a hideous neon hat with a zippered pocket, which allows the wearer to achieve the coveted dual purpose of looking like a moron while holding about three ounces of stuff.

Seriously--what the hell can you actually hold in one of these things?  A dollar bill?  A fun size candy bar?  A piece of paper that says "I am a stupid person?"  I can't think of anything you could put in the Cap-sac that wouldn't also fit--and be safer--in your pocket.  The Cap-sac is defenseless against such threats as strong breezes, roller coasters, and monkeys who have been trained to steal hats; furthermore, as i have mentioned, it is ugly.  Even a cell phone would weigh the thing down to the point where it would be constantly falling over your eyes, and anything heavier than a phone would probably cause long-term neck problems.

I don't ask for a lot of favors here, but I am asking you all to not buy these hideous hats.  And that should reallllly not be a hard request to fulfill.

Nothing Like a Nice, Hip Marketing Campaign

Last week Pizza Hut announced that they will be taking their branding up a notch by pushing "The Hut" as their hip, cool nickname in order to appeal to a younger generation.  This does not mean they are completely rebranding, though--they still plan to be officially called Pizza Hut.  This is more of a marketing push.  As a spokesperson explains, "We think that 'The Hut' is to Pizza Hut as Coke is to Coca-Cola. We have begun using the term in conjunction with Pizza Hut in our advertising, pizza boxes and some restaurants."

So basically, Pizza Hut wants to give itself a nickname.  If you have ever spent any time in a college dormitory, you are thinking the exact same thing I am thinking right now: EVERYONE KNOWS YOU CAN'T GIVE YOURSELF A NICKNAME.  If you try, it will just backfire, and instead of being known as "The Tank," you will be called something like "Colonoscopy Joe" as punishment.

Besides being completely inorganic and violating every rule in the Nicknames Acquisition Codebook, "The Hut" is also a stupid nickname.  Basically, the name "Pizza Hut" has two components: a word describing the product sold by the company, and a word describing a structure made of dirt and sticks.  Which seems more appropriate for spinning a nickname off of, you ask?  Answer:



Well, Pizza Hut must at least have a good reason for wanting a nickname, right?  Back to our friendly spokesperson:

"And yes, we're also introducing another vocabulary word with Pizza Hut, which is 'The Hut.' That ties in nicely with [today's] texting generation. We wanted to make sure that Pizza Hut and 'The Hut' become common vernacular for our brand. Red is our mark and when you see that red roof, people will refer to it as 'The Hut' or 'Pizza Hut.' As we expand our online and mobile businesses, 'The Hut' is the perfect icon for our mobile generation."

Ah-ha!  We are appealing to THE YOUTH!  Of course!  With their text messages and their tight pants and emo haircuts!  Surely they will treat this marketing campaign with the same earnest, genuine acceptance they routinely demonstrate when confronted with corporate America's attempts to connect to them!  This can't not work!

Long live THE HUT!

I Think This Qualifies as a Rant

My mattress is pretty uncomfortable, so every few weeks I start looking for a new one, only to discover that the process of shopping for a new mattress is even MORE painful than sleeping on a bad one.  It only takes about three minutes of sifting through the confusing product names and seemingly arbitrary selling points for me to completely break down and give up in frustration.  So today, I have decided to direct my bitter rage into a rant against the mattress industry and list a few of the things about mattresses that I find infuriating.

Infuriating Mattress Thing No. 1: Bullshit Orthopedic Jargon

Mattress ads really like throwing around words like "pressure points," "motion transfer," "coil tension," and other shit that is meaningless to the average human.  They also like to add the suffix "-pedic" to just about anything they can.  Am I supposed to be impressed by the fact that a particular mattress has SCIENCE-PEDIC ERGO COILS w/ MAXIMUM SPRINGPULSALATION?  Because I'm not.  Those are not legitimate metrics that can be compared from mattress to mattress; they are B.S. written by a blithering idiot copywriter in Mattress Hell, USA.

Infuriating Mattress Thing No. 2: The "All Women Wear Silk Pajamas" Lie

Roughly 90% of the women pictured in mattress ads are wearing silk pajamas.  I guess they are trying to convey luxury and comfort, but please--spare me.  Silk pajamas are for pimps and cougars.  They do not lend your product glamour and sophistication; they make it look like the woman pictured is crashing hard after a night spent seducing the 19-year-old bartender at a TGI Friday's.


Infuriating Mattress Thing No. 3: The Bare Mattress Conceit


Nothing irritates me more than the way these mattresses are pictured: completely bare, but inside a furnished room and usually topped with pillows and even, as in this picture, a dust ruffle of some sort.  It is completely absurd to think that someone would adorn a bare mattress with a dust ruffle and satin pillows.  I get that the picture needs to show the mattress, but why do we need this charade with the pillows and the decor and whatnot?  Trust me--I will still know it is a mattress even if it is not shown within the context of a decorated bedroom.  I am smart like that.  Maybe there is someone out there whose reaction would be along the lines of, "But lo!  What creation is this?  It appears to be a mattress, but where are the pillows?  And why is there not a generic woman draped upon it?!"  But that person does not represent the majority of mattress buyers.

Infuriating Mattress Thing No. 4: Mattress Model Poses

Speaking of generic women draped upon mattresses, let's talk about mattress models.  These are some of the worst models in the business.  They make the women in the Sears catalog look like Giselle.

Basically, there are three poses favored by mattress models.  They are:

The "This is How My Dog Sits"

Seriously.  Pancake does this pose all the time.  He is not a working model.

The "Let's Be Friends!"

This one is a particular favorite of the mattress models.

The "OMG, Sleeping Soooooooooo Peacefully"


Gee, I bet that was a hard pose to come up with.  Closing your eyes?  How genius.

Infuriating Mattress Thing No. 5: Excessive References to NASA Technology

Pretty much every single mattress claims to include NASA technology of some sort in its engineering.  Besides the fact that this can hardly be considered a differentiator, since every company mentions it, it's also ridiculous.  Generally speaking, I do not have a lot of the same needs as astronauts.  There is NASA technology that involves peeing into your spacesuit, for example; do I need that?  No.  I do not.  I need a bed.  To be used on Earth.  By me.

I feel much better now.

2009 Oscar Fashion Recap

I gotta say it: some of the outfits at the Oscars last night were very good.  Obviously, those were of no interest to me.  Fortunately, there were some bad ones as well.  Let us now discuss them.

Melissa Leo

When Melissa Leo showed up on my screen with the Best Actress nominees last night, I thought, "Hmm, I have no idea who she is."  I am guessing a lot of people were thinking the same thing.  I also thought, "Hmmm, her dress is doo-doo brown . . . and so is her hair."  I am guessing a lot of people were thinking that as well.


The only thing less surprising than the Slumdog sweep was Angelina's dress.  Ooh, something black and flowy that shows off her tattoos and bony clavicle?  How original.

Bridget Fonda

Bridget Fonda is not really important enough for anyone to have asked her the "What are you wearing?" question last night, which is a shame.  I would have really liked to hear her answer, "a dress inspired by a Yikes pencil from 1991."

Miley Cyrus

On TV, Miley's alter ego is Hannah Montana.  On the red carpet, her alter ego must be a 45-year-old woman; that seems to be the only justification for why her gowns always appear to have been chosen for someone three times her age.

On another note, this dress looks like what would happen if you put a figure skating outfit in a giant petri dish and let it grow uncontrollably.


Something about this dress makes me uncomfortable.  That thing is the awkward cleavage.

Jessica Biel

I can relate to Jessica Biel's thinking here; when I wear white, I like to tuck a napkin into my top as well.  Still, for the Academy Awards?  Maybe not the best idea. 

Tilda Swinton

My main problem with Tilda Swinton is that her outfits all seem to fall into the category of "Things That Would Not Shock a Time-Traveling Pilgrim At All."  What's frightening, though, is that this dress is about a thousand times better than what she wore last year.  (Actually, what's frightening is Tilda Swinton in general.)

Phillip Seymour Hoffman


Moving on.

In addition to the above commentary, I'd like to point out a few trends I noticed last night.

TREND: Kooky but Boring Red Dresses




Heidi Klum, Amanda Seyfried, and Virginia Madsen all wore shiny red dresses with exaggerated details, and, viewed individually, all of them looked OK; not the best dresses of the night, but not the worst.  Jointly, though, they look like a study in Things to Do with Red Fabric When You're Not That Exciting of a Person.  It's a shame, because I love Le Klum and I think Amanda Seyfried is pretty. 

TREND: Overdoing It with the Damn Mermaid Silhouette

I am so. over. mermaid silhouette. dresses.  Time to publicly shame the ladies who wore them last night.

Offender: Beyonce


Beyonce, if I had a dime for every time you wore a dress of this shape, I could reupholster every piece of furniture in my house with that hideous print you are wearing.  So thank God nobody gave me all those dimes.  But really, get a new thing going.

Offender: Melissa George


A small area of this dress is hogging an absurd percentage of its fabric.  Not unlike the distribution of global wealth, this dress is lopsided and painful to consider for too long.

Offender: Vanessa Hudgens


This dress is ugly AND it looks like a bird flew into it.

TREND: That Shade of Purple I Hate



Dear sweet God, do I hate lilac.  I just do.  I am aware that some people like it, and I am certain this world is big enough for all of us.  I can't sign off on these two dresses though, despite them both featuring that fancy drapy look I liked on all of Rami Kashou's Project Runway designs.

OK--your thoughts, please.  Who/what did I miss?

2009 Grammy Fashion Recap

The 51st Annual Grammy Awards were last night, and I am celebrating another year in artistic achievement gone by with an exercise in my own craft: making fun of famous people's outfits.



I turned on my TV just in time to see Chris Martin prancing around the stage during Coldplay's performance wearing a freakish aqua blazer and a comically small pants/crop top duo.  Yes.  Crop top.  The entire band was dressed in what Martin later described as a "Sgt. Pepper rip-off," but let's acknowledge it for what it really was: a deranged, parallel-universe version of The Wiggles.




MIA doesn't really try to dress for anyone's approval, so she's hard to hate on.  Plus, last night was literally her due date, so again: hard to hate.  Instead, I will just merely make the observation that she looks like a human maternity version of a migraine aura.

Paris Hilton


Three shades of purple, two shades of green, cutouts, glitter, shimmer, lace, and ruching: that is a lot to fit on a dress that's approximately nine inches long.



To be fair, this is one of the best attempts at futuristicgreyplastickycrapstyle I've yet seen.  But having the best ugly plastic dress?  That's like having the prettiest turd.

John Mayer


John Mayer looks stupid.

Lisa Rinna


You'd think that with all the security personnel employed by the Brangelina family, somebody would have noticed Lisa Rinna picking through their trash as she put together this Jolie-wannabe look.

Taylor Swift


Actually, I think this young lady looks fantastic; however, I see a disturbingly Zellwegerian squint in her facial expression, and am hereby putting her on FaceWatch.  If such behavior continues, I will have to take drastic measures.

Sheryl Crow


This dress isn't so horribly offensive, but for me the fabric is way too much like staring into one of those oily, rainbow-ish puddles on the ground at the gas station--and, well, I just have to believe that good fashion doesn't ever remind anyone of being at a gas station.

Knowing My Karma, I Will Probably Be Reincarnated as a Famous Person's Chihuahua

Soooo apparently People has an online-only pet version, People Pets, and after scanning it for an afternoon I have come to the conclusion that it is the Internet's leading source for pictures of sad dogs.  Consider the following photos:

Exhibit A: Mickey Rourke's Sad Chihuahua


This emo chihuahua has more pain and sadness in its eyes than I ever would have thought possible for a 5-lb. almost-rodent.  I guess I could start imagining reasons a dog owned by Mickey Rourke would be sad, but let's save some time and assume that there are many.

Exhibit B: Mickey Rourke's Other Sad Chihuahua
Yeah.  There is an entire People Pets feature on Mickey Rourke's army of little dogs.  And almost all of them look miserable.

Exhibit C: This Completely-Ashamed Poodle


Yes, that is a poodle that has been dyed and groomed to look like a camel.  And yes, he is standing in front of his owner, who is wearing a style of outfit commonly favored by eccentric high school French teachers.  No, I do not have any idea what he could possibly be embarrassed by.

This poor poodle is part of a feature story on "Extreme Grooming," in which dogs are groomed to look like roosters, fish, buffaloes, and even peacocks.  Sad dog faces all around in that photo gallery.

Exhibit D: Mariah Carey's Puppy


Whenever I see pictures of Mariah Carey and her Jack Russell, she is a.) holding him in her arms, and b.) wearing completely insane boots of some kind or another.  However sorry I feel about the fact that he never gets to walk anywhere, I am even more sympathetic about the boots.  If this puppy is anything like Pancake, I suspect that big crazy boots are a huge temptation for him to look at--like big, moving stuffie toys with fringe--and I seriously doubt Mariah lets him loose on those things.  (On a related note, you should see Pancake go to town on an Ugg boot.  It is a crazy sight.  He thinks he is attacking an animal.)

Exhibit E: Yet Another Sad Chihuahua Belonging to Mickey Rourke


Actually, this might be one of the same chihuahuas as above.  But regardless, it looks like it is about to step out into oncoming traffic.