Monday, December 26, 2011

Happy Boxing Day!

If you are like me- and I hope for your sake, you are not- then you don't really know what Boxing Day is. In the interest of full disclosure, for the longest time, I actually thought that Boxing Day had something to do with boxers...not the athletes, but the dogs. Yep, I'm that dumb.

Here's what Boxing Day really is:

Boxing Day is a secular holiday that is celebrated on the 26th of December- or the first weekday following Christmas, if Christmas falls on a Saturday and Boxing Day is on a Sunday, then it is actually celebrated the following Monday. Ugh, this is already confusing.

Boxing day was traditionally a day in which the wealthy in the United Kingdom would give their servants a boxed gift. Some would even get the day off. This was done, not entirely out of selflessness, but rather out of the wealthy's desire to make sure that their own Christmases ran smoothly by promising The Help, a much needed gift and day off.

The "boxes" in Boxing Day, usually contained a gift, cash, or in some very pathetic cases, the leftover food from Christmas dinner.

Today, Boxing Day is primarily celebrated in the UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and a few other Commonwealths. Apparently, we celebrate it here in the US, but it is primarily for delivery personnel; according to wikipedia, US corporations give a bottle of scotch to their regular mail carriers and parcel deliverers. I have never heard of this before and I think it was added to wikipedia by a mail carrier who just drank and entire bottle of scotch.

Boxing Day is a huge shopping day, much like the US's Black Friday sales. For many merchants, it is their biggest revenue day of the year.

So, what are you waiting for? Go out and shop?

And here's some inspiration:
And I'm currently having and After Xmas sale...or Boxing Day sale, if you will. Enter coupon code AFTER25 for 25% off your entire order. Good through Sunday, 1/1/12.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

"Tis the Season...."

Today is December 22. We are 2 days into Hanukkah and 3 days away from Christmas. And, here in Colorado Springs, we got hit by a huge storm and I am snowed in.

So, I guess I have nothing left to do but blog about the holidays.  The facts about the holidays. The good, the bad and the ugly.

  • The first company to offer an artificial Christmas tree was Sears and Roebuck in 1883. A 33 limbed tree would cost you 50 cents. A 50 limber would cost you $1. 
  • According to the National Christmas Tree Association (yep, that's a thing), for every Christmas tree sold, 3 seedlings are planted. I'm not sure if this is true and I'm not taking sides on the real vs. artificial debate...but I will say that it seems like a waste to cut down trees and have them slowly die in your house for a month. I will also refer you to this bit of brilliance by the comic Jim Gaffigan:
  • "Hanukkah," "Chanukah," "Chanukkah," and "Hanukah" are all acceptable ways to spell Hanukkah. I stick with that version because that is the way I learned to spell it in school. And like a stubborn old lady, I refuse to learn different ways of doing things.
  • Speaking of Hanukkah, it is not "Jewish Christmas" as politicians and departments store commercials would have you believe. It is historically older and has a totally different meaning and origin than Christmas. I don't have the time to go into the origin of Hanukkah, but if you want to know more about Hanukkah, go to: 
  • Here's something interesting: Johnny Marks, a Jewish man, wrote the songs Rocking Around The Christmas Tree, A Holly Jolly Christmas, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, and The Most Wonderful Day of the Year, to name a few.
  • Some stats: 1 out of 10 xmas gifts will be broken by New Years, 7 out of 10 dogs will get gifts, and 9 out of 10 years in a row my husband will get a Lowe's gift card from my parents; a store he absolutely despises....
  • Back in Victorian times, there was a Xmas game called "Hot Cookies." This was a game in which someone was blindfolded and other players took turns striking the blindfolded person. It was up to the blindfolded person to determine who delivered the blows....I've seen a great deal office Christmas parties end in this same manor.
  • Candy canes used to be just straight sticks of peppermint, but a choir master at a Cologne cathedral wanted to keep noisy children quiet, so he made some that were bent in the shape of a shepherds hook (so as not to be sacrilegious, I guess) and handed them out to the kiddos. The shape became popular and stuck.
  • Dreidel is a common game played during Hanukkah, but did you know that there are actually dreidel tournaments? Yep. Major League Dreidel or the MLD for short, founded in New York in 2007, hosts dreidel tournaments during Hanukkah. I believe this is a sport that I could actually watch and care about. 
  • So, Christmas is December 25...but you know what else is on Dec. 25? National Pumpkin Pie Day. And to be honest, I'd much rather celebrate that with the family...seems a lot cheaper with less risk of hurt feelings and awkward moments.
Well, there's some Christmas and Hanukkah facts for you. And here's an adorable little necklace. I picked this one because, when I was a kid, I always wanted to find a fluffy, white kitten under the tree. Instead I got leaky water bed. True story.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Hey, Who Are You Calling "Short and Stout?"

I'll be straight with you, I don't really have a good reason for today's blog post except that I really love the necklace that it relates to, so I am totally writing this post out of pure self-promotion....which isn't really different from most of my blog posts, but I usually try to disguise it a little better.

So, without further ado, bring on the shameless pandering:


  • The earliest teapots are thought to have originated in China; which makes sense. Also, early teapots were small because they were designed for a single drinker; the person would drink the tea directly from the spout. I dare you to try that the next time you go out to a Chinese restaurant.
  • In Europe, in the early days, tea-drinking was an activity reserved for the upper class because tea was crazy expensive. Also, porcelain tea pots were the Bentleys of tea pots. See, they couldn't, or rather, didn't know how to make porcelain at the time in Europe, so it had to be imported from China. 
  • An average of 4,000 people are injured by teapots every year. I was going to make fun of this statistic, but then I was reminded that I recently injured my left hand while trying to get brownies out of a pan.....
  • The Teapot Song (aka I'm a Little Teapot) was written by Clarence Kelley and George Sanders. Kelley ran a dance school for children and he wanted an easier way to teach children the Waltz Clog. Thus, The Teapot Song was written as an accompaniment and teaching tool. The song was published in 1939 and took off from there.
  • The Teapot Dome Scandal was a bribery incident that took place between 1922-1923. The scandal involved the leasing of petroleum reserves at Teapot Dome and the accepting of bribes from big oil companies...I drink your milkshake! Up until Watergate, The Teapot Dome Scandal was the biggest scandal in American politics.
So, do you fancy a spot of tea now? Or, do you fancy a necklace? Well, here you go:

And hey, guess what? There's still time to get this as a gift! Through Monday, 12/19, I will spring for free priority shipping so that it can get to your door by 12/25. And, you can get 15% off if you use coupon code HOLIDAY15 (good through 1/1/12). So, what are you waiting for?

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Ties That Bind....Corsets!

As a burlesque dancer, I hear a lot of people say "I'm corset trained," which always makes me giggle because it reminds me of saying "I'm potty trained." However, being "corset trained," one could argue, is much tougher than being potty trained...just not as socially crucial as being potty trained.

I am not corset trained. I am potty trained (thank you, very much). Corset training- also known as "tightlacing" takes a lot of dedication. One must wear a corset over extended periods of time, slowly tightening the corset laces until the ideal waist size is obtained. Those who know me, know that I do not have that kind of dedication. I can't even leave a headband on for more than an hour.

Of course, I'm also not going to start doing crunches either, so I guess I'm stuck with my current waist size.

But, you don't have to have your sights set on a 20 inch waist to wear a corset. Corsets are very flattering, sexy pieces of clothing that can be worn by everyone, not just burlesque dancers. I promise.

Here's the stats on corsets:

  • The word "corset" comes from the Old French word "corps," which means "body."
  • While corsets are mainly worn by women, dudes have been known to wear them too. In fact, corsetry came into fashion for men in the early 1800's when a wasp waist was in fashion. Old-timey to love them.
  • Corsets have medical purposes as well. Those with back problems or scoliosis ore even internal injuries are sometimes fitted for corsets so that they can protect the torso. After Andy Warhol was shot in 1968, he wore a corset for the rest of his life.  
  • In the 19th century, corset boning was made of elephant, moose, or whale bones. *Sad face*. Today, cheaper or costume corsets are made with plastic boning, while the more expensive "corset-training" ones are typically made with steel.  Although I have heard of some still made with whale bone. That makes me cranky.
  • The smallest waist achieved through corset training is 13 inches by Ethyl Granger, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Thirteen inches! Seriously, that's a little more than the circumference of a  Jameson bottle...just to put things into perspective...for people like me.
  • The invention of the corset has been mistakenly attributed to Catherine d'Medici when she allegedly banned women with thick waists from her court in the 1550's. Bitch! But, in actuality, the corset dates back as far as ancient Babylonia. 
  • In 2007, a corset designed by Dita Von Teese was auctioned off for $20,000. However, always the "one-upper," Madonna's Who's That Girl Tour corset was auctioned off this year for $72,000. Bloody hell!* *"bloody hell" was to be said in Madonna's lame fake British accent.
Not looking to spend $72,000 on corset related items? Have I got a deal for you:

Monday, November 28, 2011

Cyber Monday Lunacy

Hey, I'm sure you haven't heard...from everything on TV and everything on the Internet...but, today is Cyber Monday.

And since I'm on the subject- I have a special going on today only in my etsy shop. Enter coupon code CYBER25 at checkout for 25% off your entire order. I don't want to belabor the point, but his is one hell of a deal. You are essentially getting my items for wholesale prices (because I'm a liberal arts major and that whole 50% markup never made sense to me). OK, now that I got that piece of housekeeping out of the way, on to the blog.

As I said, it's Monday. Do you know where our word for Monday comes from? The moon. Yep. So, here's some moon facts for ya'!

  • The word Monday is derived from the Middle English (not to be confused with Middle Earth) word "Moneday," which means "Moon Day." Told ya' so.
  • Other words derived from the word for moon or lunar: lunacy, lunatic, moonshine (heh)....
  • The moon is 4.5 billion years old. It was created to be used as reading light for Larry King....See what I did there? Larry King is older than the moon. I'm clever.
  • Like a loveless marriage, the moon is slowly drifting away. At a rate of 4 cm per year.
  • Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon album lasted on the Billboard Top 40 charts for 741 weeks from 1973 to 1988. Longer than any other album in history. 741 weeks is a long time for a population to remain continuously stoned...but it really does explain the 1970's and 1980's,
  • Around 13% of Americans believe that the moon is made out of cheese. Around 20% of Americans think the moon landing was a hoax. I imagine these are the same people who think Tara Reid is a good actress.
  • According to the Online Etymology Dictionary, the phrase "To Moon" (as in show off your ass) is most likely derived from the buttocks' similarity to "pale circularity." I see someone has seen me perform my Fat Bottom Girls burlesque act...
So there it is. Some moon facts for your Cyber Monday.  And here's a necklace for you. And it can be 25% cheaper if you use coupon code CYBER25 at checkout:) Good through Midnight, Nov. 28 2011

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Sea Monkey See, Sea Monkey Do

Well, tomorrow is the official start of the holiday season and I thought that I should blog about something that everyone will most likely have to face in the upcoming weeks: disappointment.

And what is more disappointing than Sea Monkeys? Remember the excitement you felt after ordering your first batch of live Sea Monkeys, only to discover that they were just weird specs of possibly-dead lameness, floating in dirty water.

But, you bought them, didn't you? And I would suggest that the 6-8 weeks of waiting in joyous anticipation of your briny friends' arrival, far outweighs the actual let-down that is the Sea Monkey phenomenon.

Let's talk about Sea Monkeys, shall we?

  • Sea Monkeys are the brain child (or should I say "brine child") of inventor Harold von Braunhut. Sounds like a made up name, if I'd ever heard one. But, wikipedia never lies. Ever. Anyway, the creatures were a hybrid of brine shrimp.
  • Originally called "Instant Life," von Braunhut changed the name to Sea Monkeys in 1962. He came up with the name because the tails of the little shrimp looked like monkey tails. And also they lived in salt water. Thus, Sea Monkeys. 
  • Harold von Braunhut aggressively marketed his new product in the pages of comic books. He hired illustrator Joe Orlando to create the image of the now famous Sea Monkeys, living in a magical, Atlantis like world. So, it is Joe Orlando that we have to thank for giving us the first hard lessons we learned as children: Adults are liars.
  • So, how long do Sea Monkeys live? According to the Sea Monkey website, up to 2 years:  "Thanks to new computer-driven processing technologies and ultra-pure, non-toxic chemicals, twice as many Sea-Monkeys instantly hatch, grow larger and live longer than ever before.This makes me feel kind of bad that mine only lived for 2 days.
Well, believe it or not, there's just not a lot of interesting facts about Sea Monkeys....but here's an interesting belt buckle:

And, use coupon code BLOG15 for 15% off your entire purchase in my etsy shop.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Happy Birthday, Scorsese!

There are a few debates that take place in our household that my husband and I have realized that we need to just "let go" for the sake of our marriage:

1) Chunky vs. creamy peanut butter- I will only eat creamy; otherwise you might as well just shell a peanut and crumble it over your bread.
2) Pulp vs. no pulp orange juice- again, we have come so far as a species; why in the world would people still want awful chunks of orange in their juice?
3) The Godfather vs. Goodfellas. While I love The Godfather and The Godfather part II, I will stand by and defend Martin Scorsese's Goodfellas as the best mob movie of all time. And, I don't want to spark a debate about this because my beliefs are unwavering.

And guess what? It's Martin Scorsese's birthday today. So I want to take this opportunity to say  happy f*ckin' birthday, Marty. Yeah, I'm talkin' to you. So, here's a few facts about one of the greatest auteurs of all time:

  • Scorsese was born in 1942 in Queens, New York."I'm New York. Don't you never come in here empty handed again, you gotta pay for the pleasure of my company." - Bill the Butcher, Gangs of New York 
  • As a kid, he was asthmatic and couldn't play sports, so instead he spent a lot of time at the movies. "Twenty Dollars! Let's go da movies!" - Charlie, Mean Streets
  • Went to NYU film school. "Now I see it clearly. My whole life is pointed in one direction. I see that now. There has never been any choice for me." - Travis Bickle, Taxi Driver
  • He has been married 5 times. "Did you f*ck my wife?" Jake La Motta, Raging Bull
  • He is 5'3" tall.  "I'm a little f*cked up, but I'm funny how? I mean funny like I'm a clown, I amuse you? I make you laugh, I'm here to f*ckin' amuse you? What do you mean funny, funny how? How am I funny?" Tommy DeVito, Goodfellas
  • Although nominated 6 times for a best director Oscar since 1981. Scorsese didn't win one until 2007 for The Departed. Yeah, that's right; the rap group Three Six Mafia won an Oscar before Scorcese did... "Maybe someday you'll wake the f*ck up." Frank Costello, The Departed
  • Before he decided to make movies, Scorsese was seriously considering joining the priesthood. "Listen to me very carefully. There are three ways of doing things around here: the right way, the wrong way, the the way I do it. You understand?" Ace Rothstein, Casino
So there's a few tidbits about Scorsese. And here's a few pieces of jewelry that remind me of Scorsese films/projects:
The Aviator
Raging Bull
Gangs of New York
The Last Temptation of Christ
The Age of Innocence
Bringing Out the Dead
Boardwalk Empire

Interested in any of these? Use coupon code BLOG15 for 15% off:)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Well, that got your attention, didn't it? Yes, I'm going to write about sex today. Why? Well, to be honest- I need the blog hits and from what I understand, sex sells. Want proof? My most popular blog post to date was titled "A Few Facts About V.D." And by, "V.D." I meant Valentines Day, but you pervs had to take it somewhere else.

 Oh, and it's hump day, so why not write about sex....

So, let's talk about sex, baby (Please forgive the out-dated Salt N Pepa reference, I'm old and I don't know any better). This may or may not be NSFW, depending on where you work...and if you want to keep your job.

  • Sex burns an average of 100 calories. Unless you are really lazy.
  • Guess what swells during sex?...Well, besides the obvious- The inner nose.
  • Over 1/3 of women over the age of 80 still have sex with their boyfriend or spouse. First of all- Atta girl! Second- Ew.
  • Aussies are the most likely to have threesomes, with about 28% of the population claiming to have had a threesome. Gives new meaning to the term "Down Under" (cue rimshot).  However, I don't recommend going to the Outback Steakhouse to solicit a threesome. They will ask you to leave. Don't ask me how I know that.
  • Half of single women have sex by the third date. The other half are lying.
  • Sex can relieve a headache because it relieves the tension that is constricting blood vessels in the brain. You're welcome married men- I just gave you a solid way of convincing your wife to have sex on a Tuesday night.
  • Twelve per cent of women say they would have sex with a President if propositioned. Totally depends on which president...that Millard Fillmore was a hottie!
  • June is the most common month for Americans to lose their virginity. I'm also going to assume that that is the month when most parents have cheap wine stolen from their liquor cabinets.
  • Here's a fact for all my burlesque buddies- The merkin was originally created in the 15th century for prostitutes to be used as a "pubic wig" to hide lice and the symptoms of syphilis. No evidence if they used swarovski crystals or not....
  • Early Japanese condoms were made of tortoise shell or animal horn. Um, ouch?
  • The term "blow job" comes from Victorian times. A slang term for a Victorian hooker was "Blowsy," and "blow" was slang for ejaculation. You can put it together from there. 
  • Something else weird- "blow job" was also used to describe jet planes during World War II. That could lead to some confusion...
  • Men have an average of 11 erections per day. Really? No wonder you all never have the time to take out the trash or fix that broken light switch.
  • Sex-related entertainment is not recession-proof. Adult clubs, mags, escorts, etc. usage has taken a dramatic plunge as 42% of dudes have cut that from their budgets.
So, there you go, you saucy minxes. There's your sex facts. Now go forth and multiply. 

Birds do it, Bees do it. Even cats dressed in Victorian garb do it. What? It's not like I have a straight up "sex necklace" to sell. But, I do have to pay the bills, so here's the necklace I'm hawking today:
And, use coupon code BLOG15 for 15% off your entire order in my etsy shop.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Dia De Los Muertos!

Well today is All Saints Day and it's the beginning of celebrations in Mexico for Dia De Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead- for all you gringos out there. To celebrate, I'm having a bit of chocolate an cinnamon in my coffee this morning...I would've added Kahlua, but I have stuff to get done today.....

Don't know what Day of the Dead is? Well, it's not the George Romero movie, but it is just as cool.

  • Day of the Dead is celebrated on All Saints Day (Nov. 1) and All Souls Day (Nov. 2)...I guess it should be called Days of the Dead, but I'll put the semantics issue aside.
  • Day of the Dead is celebrated mainly in Mexico and a few other Latin American countries. It emphasizes remembering and honoring the spirits of deceased loved ones. 
  • Day of the Dead has origins with the Aztecs and other Meso-American civilizations. It was common practice to celebrate the lives of dead ancestors and some cultures would keep skulls and use them in ceremonies to symbolize death and rebirth. The original Day of the Dead celebrations took place in August. But, along came the Spanish conquistadors and they flipped out when they saw this "gruesome" display. So, they suggested (read: forced) the native populations to celebrate Day of the Dead on the the Catholic church's All Saints Day and All Souls Day.
  • Children's souls are believed to return on Nov. 1, and adult souls are believed to return on Nov. 2. Families build shrines (or altars called offrendas) and decorate graves with sugar skulls, marigolds, toys for the children, and tequila for the adults.
  • Sugar skulls actually came from Italian missionaries in Mexico. The Italians brought their confectionary skills to the native population and boom- sugar skulls!
  • My dining room is decorated in Day of the Dead, complete with an offrenda/bookshelf. Also, we decorate our Christmas tree in Day of the Dead, complete with sugar skulls and marigolds. I call it El Arbol de los Muertos....because I took high school Spanish.
  • Undoubtedly, the most famous Day of the Dead artist has got to be Jose Posada. He originally started out as a political cartoonist, but moved into doing commercial work and children's illustrations. Images like La Calavera Catrina or The Calavera of the Female Dandy were used to satirized the life of the upper class in Mexico, but are now used in many Day of the Dead art projects as the images are now in the public domain.
Speaking of one such art project, here's a Day of the Dead necklace using the artwork of Jose Posada:
Use coupon code BLOG15 for 15% off!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Top of the Halloween Mornin' to Ya!

Today is my very favorite day of the year. Not only is it the day that you get to dress up in costume and go beg for candy (or go beg for booze, if you're an adult), but it is also the last day of relative silence that you will experience before being inundated with Christmas advertisements and annoying Mariah Carey holiday songs.

So, without further ado, let's talk about Halloween and all it's wonderfully creepy glory!

  • "Halloween" comes from the term "All Hallow's Eve" which refers to a celebration of the dead. It was celebrated on October 31st, which was the last day of the Celtic calendar.
  • Speaking of Celts....Guess who's responsible for Halloween? That's right, the Irish. So, the Irish have given the world Guinness, Jameson, and Halloween? Yes. You are welcome. You see, the ancient Celts believed that the spirits and ghosts wandered the streets on All Hallow's Eve, so they would dress up in costumes and masks so they wouldn't appear as human. AND, the Irish brought you Jack-O-Lanterns.  Well, originally they were turnips...I, know. Weird. According to legend there was this guy named Stingy Jack who was a trickster who was turned away from both heaven and hell. Since he was stuck in between the two, he used a hollowed out turnip to hold his candle and give him light while he wandered around. When the Irish immigrated to America they kept this tradition, but used pumpkins instead, since everyone in the US was like "what the f*ck is a turnip?" AND, it's believed that trick or treating originated with the Irish. Apparently, Irish peasants would beg for food from the richies to contribute to the All Hallow's Eve feast. The richies didn't want a riot on their hands, so they gave them sweets and fun stuff. So, Halloween=Irish. Pretty rad, huh?
  • Halloween is the second highest grossing commercial holiday, second to Christmas. Hey, those slutty nurse costumes aren't cheap. And do you think black and orange oreos are free?
  • Best and worst candies this year? According to the Huffington Post, it's Kit Kat for best and Smarties for worst. I also would have accepted Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, Snickers and M&M's for best and pencils, raisins, and those weird, unnamed orange and black wrapped peanut butter candies for worst.
  • Highest grossing Halloween movie? Not Halloween. It was Jaws. And the Exorcist is number 2.
  • The largest pumpkin ever grown weighed 1446 pounds. That's a lot of beta-cerotene.
  • The first citywide Halloween celebration in the U.S. was in Anoka Minnesota in 1921.  Hmmm. Minnesota in October. I'm guessing it was also a celebration of coats and ear muffs.
  • Most popular Halloween costume this year? Charlie Sheen. Yeah. I'm not joking. I wish I was. 
  • Babies born on Halloween were believed to be born with a second sight that allows them to see and talk to the dead. 
  • Samhainophobia is an intense fear of Halloween. I know that sounds like I made it up, but I found that word on the INTERNET, where everything is true!
  • Apparently, Scottish girls believed that they could see the face of their future husband by hanging a wet sheet out by a bonfire on Halloween. I'm guessing a lot of Scottish girls thought that they would be marrying The Blob...or Philip Seymour Hoffman, based on the image they saw in those sheets.
So, there's a few facts about Halloween that you may or may not have known. Would you like a necklace to commemorate your new found knowledge? If so, have I got one for you:
And, if you use coupon code BLOG15, you'll get 15% off your entire purchase in my etsy shop. But you know that already. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Zombies! And Not One Reference to Braaaiiinnnsss. Oops.

It seems that zombies are the big thing to be "into" at the moment. In fact, right now, there is probably a Zombie Crawl being planned in your humble little burgh by some inpsired hipster film dork with daddy's credit card and a "ironically cheesy" second hand t-shirt. But before zombies were "cool," before people were pretending (or in some cases, not pretending) to prepare for the so-called zombie apocalypse, before The Walking Dead, before Shaun of the Dead, and even before Night of the Living Dead; zombie's have had their place in folklore. Yep. People were into zombies long before that cardigan-and-strategically-placed-scarf-wearing neighbor of yours was into them.  And even though this blog might seem like a cathartic rant against hipsters, it's actually a little history lesson in zombies....and also a way for you to "one up" any hipster you encounter. In fact, I'm preparing you for the Hipster Apocalypse. You are welcome.

The origins of zombiism has it's roots in Haitian voodoo culture. The word "zombie" comes from the Haitian word "zombi" (what a stretch) which means "spirit of the dead." According to folklore, a Haitian voodoo priest, or Bokor, can supposedly re-animate a corpse through black magic and a powder called coup padre. Coup padre contains tetrodoxin, which is a toxin found in the porcupine fish. But, here's the rub: Zombies are not really resurrected from the dead. Nope. Instead, a Bokor administers the powder to a LIVING person. The person then appears to be dead after receiving the powder, but they just have a decreased heart rate and lower body temperature. They are not fully dead. They are only half-dead. Bet you didn't think you'd be getting a Monty Python allusion? Nobody expects a Monty Python allusion (I'm on a roll!). Anyway, the family believes the drugged up person to be dead and buries the poor sap.

Later, the Bokor exhumes the individual. Although physically intact, the zombified brain has lost all memory, free will, and rationality.... kind of like a Stepford wife...or a Scientologist. The zombie is now under the control of the Bokor until said Bokor dies.

The prototype for the film zombie was in the movie White Zombie (not the band) which premiered in 1932. White Zombie tells the story of a well-to-do Haitian businessman (played by Bella Lugosi) who falls in love with a married lady. Lugosi's character "zombifies" the husband to get him out of the way. Most zombie movies that followed would portray the same sort of setup: a once cognizant being is rendered brainless by and under the control of a malicious master.

It was George Romero that re-invented the way we view zombies. In 1968, he released Night of the Living Dead, which gave us a new type of zombie. The new zombie is a formerly dead, weak, flesh-hungry monster that was created by some epidemic or event (in this case, radiation from a fallen satellite). And, most importantly, the zombie spreads it's disease through biting. After Romero's idea of the zombie, several other zombie films followed suit, using this prototype. The zombie has come to represent disease, war, invasion, etc., depending on the era  and what was going on in the world. Also, Romero was the one who declared that a zombie could be killed by a blow to the head.

But, more interestingly, I just happen to be listening to Queen's Don't Stop Me Now as I type this. Those of you who are Shaun of the Dead fans understand why that is "interesting."

But, even MORE interesting, is this necklace. Ah, yes. We have come to that point in the blog where I try to pay the bills. Here's a great necklace that will be perfect for Halloween. And if you wear it in front of your hipster neighbor and say something like "I don't really believe in zombies, but I think this necklace is fun," that will really piss him off. He'll have to hug his Coachella t-shirt and chug some coconut water to get over it.
And, use coupon code BLOG15 to get 15% off. Yay, savings!

AND- This just in: This blog won silver in the Colorado Springs Independent Best Of issue. Yep. I can't believe it either. This blog isn't even my second favorite blog....

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Bats, Belfries, Etc.

"Just how many bats are in your belfry?" That's is the question I would like to ask Michelle Bachman or Christine O'Donnell or Victoria Jackson or Sarah Palin or...well you get the point.

But this blog isn't about crazy ladies. It's about bats! Because it's getting close to Halloween and I think bats are pretty cool little mammals....

  • Yep, I said mammals. They are warm blooded, have live births, and nurse their young. Also, they are the only mammals that can fly...well except for Snoopy when he fights the Red Barron.
  • Bats have arms and fingers. Their wings consist of a thin layer of skin that stretches over their arms and fingers. That is both creepy and fantastically awesome.
  • Speaking of wings, bats don't just flap their wings up and down. Instead, they sort of swim through the air, using motions that resemble a butterfly stroke.
  • Vampire bats rarely bite people and they rarely kill their prey. Instead, they feed on large mammals like horses and cattle. To feed on their prey, they make a shallow wound with their teeth and then they lick up the blood. They ingest about an ounce of blood a day...which is a little under a shot glass amount (to put it in terms I can better understand). Oh, and also, vampire bats don't turn into Count Dracula....Just in case you didn't know that already.
  • Bats eat at night and sleep during the day. Like college students. They live in caves or at the tops of trees and sleep upside down in a colony. The largest bat colony is in Bracken Cave, TX (release the Bracken!). Also in Texas is the Congress Avenue bridge in Austin. A bunch of bats live there too and they like to fly out near sundown to nom on some insects. It's a cool thing to see. But it's kind of smelly and also, I was afraid one would get stuck in my hair....
  • Bat babies are called pups. Adorable.
  • The term "Blind as a Bat" is inaccurate. Bat's have pretty keen senses, including their eyesight.
  • Bats have super high maybe the saying should be "Skinny as a Bat." I'm going to try to make that saying catch on...
  • Less than 10 people in the past 50 years have contracted rabies from bats. Bats are scared of people, so they don't really mingle with them.
  • So, why are bats associated with crazy? Well, the term "Bats in the Belfry" allegedly comes from the idea that the belfry of a church is similar to a person's mind. Bats only inhabit a belfry when a church has become abandoned because the ringing of a bell would drive them, well, batty. So, if someone has "bats in the belfry" then they have mentally "checked out" and have a colony of crazy in their head. And what about the term "batsh*t"? Well, that's just taking the whole saying a little bit further...I think you can fill in the rest.
Speaking of crazy, you'd be crazy to not get this necklace.  Yeah, I just typed that. I'm not proud...but apparently, I'm not too proud to pander. I've got bills to pay.

And, you know the drill. Use coupon code BLOG15 for 15% off...

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Think Pink!

Well, I know that I promised that every blog post this month would be about something Halloween related, but I want to take this week's blog post to talk about something scary, but not Halloween related.

As you probably know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. And as the daughter of a breast cancer survivor, I feel that it is important to take this opportunity to help spread awareness.

So here's a few breast cancer facts:

  • Estimated new cases of breast cancer in 2011: 230,480 (female), 2,140 (male, yep- dudes can get it too)

  • Factors that increase a woman's risk for breast cancer: age, genetics, menstrual history, obesity, daily alcohol consumption (uh oh for me). Factors that decrease the risk: breast feeding and physical activity. While there are no proven prevention techniques, a healthy lifestyle can reduce your risk.

  •  Scary statistic: about 40% of women will discover a lump in their breast. But, this does not mean that they have breast cancer. A lump can be benign and not breast cancer related. Still, it is very important to fell your boobies for early detection. If you do find a lump, go see your doctor asap. 

  • State with the highest instances of breast cancer: Rhode Island. State with the lowest: Arizona.

  • The causes of breast cancer are still relatively unknown. While we now know some of the things that can raise your risk, it is still important to fund research so that we can find a cause and a cure.

  • So, what's up with the pink ribbon? Well, the first known use of the pink ribbon was when it was handed out in 1991 to participants in the Susan G. Komen New York City race for breast cancer survivors. The pink ribbon was modeled after the red ribbon for AIDS awareness.

  • The pink ribbon was chosen as a way to represent fear of breast cancer, hope for the future, and charitable goodness of people and businesses. It is used to evoke solidarity amongst breast cancer patients.
These are only a few facts about breast cancer. I wanted to keep this post relatively light. If you need or want more information about breast cancer, or you would like to make a donation to research, please go to .

Here's a sweet little necklace that I think is appropriate for the month of October. Also, if you buy this necklace, I will donate the proceeds to the Susan G. Komen center.

And, for the month of October, I'm offering a discount off your total purchase in my etsy shop. Just enter coupon code PINK20 for 20% off. The discounted percentage will also be donated to the Susan G. Komen center.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

The Jersey Devil...And I don't mean Snooki

It's finally October, my favorite month EVER! And, around the corner is Halloween, my favorite holiday EVER! And, I'm getting over my cold with some doctor prescribed vicodin-spiked cough syrup, which I suspect makes me add exclamation marks to everything!

Minor prescription-drug-induced-hyperbole aside, I really do love Halloween. So for the whole month of October, I'm going to blog about all things scary, creepy, frightening, etc. So, let's start with The Jersey Devil...and I don't mean Snooki...although she does fit into the category of scary, creepy and frightening.

There's several variations of the legend of the Jersey Devil. But, we'll focus on the most popular and interesting of them all. The story goes that a rather "loose" woman (aka whore) named "Mother Leeds" found out that she was pregnant with her 13th child. Upon giving birth to the kid, she cursed it by saying "Let it be the devil." Well, be careful what you wish for. According to legend, the child was born with horns, wings, a tail and a horse-like head. And, no- the child wasn't Sarah Jessica Parker... she's from Ohio, not New Jersey.

The Jersey Devil is said to inhabit the Pine Barrens of Southern New Jersey, reeking havoc on livestock and even humans. The most active time period for Jersey Devil sightings was said to be one particular week in 1909. Sightings occurred from January 16 through January 23 and included hoofed footprints in the snow to actual creature sightings by eyewitnesses. In fact, the sightings became so frequent and widespread (even reaching Pennsylvania and Delaware) that many schools and workplaces shut down in panic.  Among the alleged attacks, was an attack on a trolley car in Haddon Heights, NJ as well as an attack at a social club in Camden, NJ. It was even reported that shots were fired on the creature in by the Camden police department.

After that, not much was heard about the Jersey Devil. A few sightings would be reported every now and then, but much like the Loch Ness monster, no definitive evidence has surfaced since the 1909 sightings. 

So, was the Jersey Devil a real monster or perhaps a drunken New Jersey housewife? Who knows. But, just like Bigfoot, the Chupacabra, Nessie, and aliens; I think it's fun to buy into the folklore. Why not?

Well, this necklace isn't exactly the Jersey Devil...from what I've seen the image of the Jersey Devil isn't exactly the cutest thing to have around your neck. But, I really like this vintage deco devil image. And so should you. 

And, use coupon code BLOG15 for 15% off your entire purchase in my shop:)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Pola Negri; The Greatest Star You Never Heard Of

It is fast approaching the greatest time of year for me: Halloween! I absolutely adore Halloween, not just because of the scary movies I get to watch, or the fact that the decor of my house finally makes sense for a few weeks out of the year, or the fact that Nabisco gives us the black and orange Oreo cookie. No, these reasons are all grand, but my favorite thing about Halloween is the costumes. Duh. I mean, come on, I'm a burlesque performer...I practically spend almost every weekend in costume:)

And you know what would make a great Halloween costume this year? Silent film star Pola Negri.


Well, chances are that if you didn't grow up in Poland or during the 1920's...or Poland in the 1920's, you have probably not heard of her.

But guess what? She was one of THE biggest stars of her time. In fact, she was the first European star to be invited to Hollywood...(yeah, I didn't know you had to be invited to Hollywood, either. I just thought you crashed the party, like Tara Reid.)

Pola Negri was born Barbara Apolonia Chalupiec in Lipno, Vistula Land. A couple of things about this: Vistula Land was part of the Russian Empire and is now modern day Poland. And, people named their children Apolonia before the move Purple Rain.

Chalupiec got her showbiz start in the Imperial Ballet of Warsaw. But, a bout with tuberculosis forced her to quit. While she was convalescing, she came up with the stage name of Pola Negri- Pola, which was a shortened version of Apolonia, and Negri from the Italian novelist Ada Negri.

After her illness, Pola auditioned for the Warsaw Imperial Academy of the Dramatic Arts. She received much acclaim during her stay there and after graduation, she was offered several stage and film roles. Negri debuted in the Polish film Slave to Her Senses, which led to many more film roles and she quickly became one of Warsaw's most prominent actresses.

By 1917, Negri was given the opportunity to move to Berlin, Germany and act on the stage there. In Berlin, she met German film producer, Ernst Lubitsch. Lubitsch casted Negri in his wide scale film The Eyes of the Mummy Ma in 1918. The film was such a success that it sparked several more collaborations between Negri and Lubitsch.  Why is this important? Well, their collaboration caught the eye of the United States, and more importantly, Hollywood. The invitation was sent.

Well, invitation, is a weird word. The thing is, Hollywood was feeling threatened by the emerging German film industry, so Hollywood's tactic was to buy German talent. So, Hollywood did the same with Negri, and Paramount Pictures offered her a contract. This set the precedent for the procurement of other European stars like Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich and later, Ingrid Bergman and Sophia Loren.

American audiences LOVED Pola. In fact, she became one of the richest stars at the time. She even modeled her Hollywood mansion after the White House. She also started several women's fashion trends, like red painted toenails, fur boots, and turbans. I am rocking all three of those looks right now.

Negri earned fame as the femme fatale in her movies, but Paramount wanted to break her typecast because they thought audiences would start to turn on her if she continued to play the seductress. So, Hollywood, in its infinite wisdom, started to cast her in "peasant" roles. The combination of this- and the fact that she had a rumored affair with Rudolph Valentino and caused a scene at his funeral- soured the American publics response to Negri. Pola Negri began her initial retirement in 1928.

Negri married Georgian prince Serge Mdivani, who ended up gambling away most of her, she divorced his loser ass and went back to work. She went to France and starred in the film Mazurka.

Mazurka gained popularity not only in France, but Germany as well. In fact, a German egomaniacal dickbag named Adolf really enjoyed her film. The fact that Adolf Hitler named this as one of his favorite films gave birth to the rumor that Hitler and Negri had an affair. This rumor was completely untrue. In fact, Pola Negri sued a French magazine for printing this libelous rumor and won the lawsuit.

After the Nazis took over France, Negri hightailed it out of there and came back to the U.S. She got a role in the 1943 comedy Hey Diddle, Diddle. She was so well received in that film, that fickle Hollywood came knocking at her door once again. But most of the roles offered to her were a rehashing of her role in Hey Diddle, Diddle. Instead, she turned them down and went on the Vaudeville circuit.

She toured the US with her Vaudeville act then went back into semi-retirement. She became close friends with oil heiress Margaret West and moved into Wests' San Antonio ranch. Many speculated that the two were having an affair, but there is no evidence to support this.

In 1948, Billy Wilder approached Negri to play the role of Norman Desmond in Sunset Boulevard. She turned it down and the role went to her rival, Gloria Swanson.... Doh.

Negri did come out of retirement once to appear in the Disney film The Moon Spinners in 1964. Other than that, she led a somewhat reclusive life.

Pola Negri died on August 1, 1987 at the age of 90. She has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame as well as Poland's Walk of Fame in Lodz.

I think Pola Negri was a fascinating starlet. And if you want to go as Pola Negri for Halloween, may I suggest a necklace to finish off your costume...that way, when people say "Who are you?" you can just point to your necklace:)

And use coupon code BLOG15 for 15% off this item or any item in my shop:)

Friday, September 9, 2011

Make Like a Tree and Get Out of Here!

It's September and Fall is definitely seeping into the air here in Colorado. I love it! It's one of my favorite seasons; especially these early days of fall when it is still t-shirt weather during the day and only slightly chilly at night. And while the leaves haven't started to change yet, I thought it might be interesting to look into why leaves change color during the fall. And by "interesting," I mean "I couldn't think of anything else to write about." Bear with me.

This also falls into the category of "stuff I really should have learned in grade school..." And perhaps I did. But years of chronic TV watching has pushed out all of that grade school knowledge in exchange for storing Simpsons quotes. Pretty lame, Millhouse.

Anyway; why do leaves change color?

First of all, it turns out that they don't really change color as much as the lose color. Huh?

I'll explain: Leaves are the food supplies of trees. They bring home the bacon, so to speak. Trees spend all summer sunbathing and drinking water...kind of like George Hamilton. Also, like George Hamilton leaves are always orange; but I'll get back to that.

So, the leaves soak in all the sunlight and oxygen to create food through a process called photosynthesis. You remember that word from grade school, right? A chemical called chlorophyll is what makes photosynthesis possible. Kind of like the flux capacitor making time travel possible (the savvy reader will notice that vague Back to the Future reference that's a call back to this blog post's title).

Chlorophyll is also what makes plants green. So, what makes them orange, red, yellow, etc. during the fall? Well, those colors are actually the color of food. AND, guess what? Leaves have those colors in them during the summer months but the colors are covered up by the bright green, so you don't see them. So, they are actually covering up their inner George Hamilton with chlorophyl.

As the days get shorter, there's not enough sunlight to create photosynthesis, so the food making process stops. Ergo, Chlorophyll disappears from the leaves. Ergo part deux, the green color disappears from the leaves; revealing reds, oranges, and yellows...depending on how much food is left in the leaf. Red indicates higher food levels. And brown leaves indicate waste in the leaf...that should be pretty easy to remember.

So, there you go. You now kind of understand the changing of leaves; because I kind of explained it to you.

Want to welcome in fall with jewelry? Of course you do!
And, don't forget! You can use coupon code BLOG15 for 15% off of this necklace or any necklace in my shop! Also, you can use the code to save 15% off your entire order, so buy more than one necklace:) Here's my shop link:

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Ellie Font

Elephant! Or Ellie Font, as I would say in annoying pixie baby talk...but Ellie Font would make a cute burlesque name....Wait, where am I? Oh, that's right, I'm writing a blog. Sorry, I hate it when I drift off into annoying pixie baby land....

Back to the matter at hand: Elephants! Recently, my husband and I went to our local zoo. They were asking for donations to rebuild the elephant exhibit; and they need it! Right now, the exhibit is about the size of a two car garage...ok, maybe not that small- but still, it's small. So, if you live in the Colorado Springs area, donate to the elephant exhibit at the Cheyenne Mtn. Zoo.

Need some inspiration? Here's some elephant facts:

  • The word "elephant" comes from the Greek word for "ivory." 
  • Speaking of ivory, elephants have no natural predators...except humans, who hunt them for their ivory. Because we are assholes.
  • They are the largest land mammals alive and can live between 50-70 years. 
  • Elephants are a symbol of wisdom in Asian cultures. I agree. They just look wise. And, I'm not making fun of their wrinkles or grey hair...
  • An elephant eats about 16 hours a day. The rest of the day is spent drinking, bathing, "wallowing," playing, and resting. Sounds like a typical Sunday at my house.
  • Elephants are very social. They take care of injured family members and even seem to grieve over a dead companion. That fact made me get a little teary-eyed.
  • Their trunks are sensitive enough to pick up a blade of grass and strong enough to brake a tree limb. Also, their trunks work as sort of a "smelling periscope" and can determine the presence of enemies.
  • Elephants are smarties. They have the largest brains of any land animal and are ranked up there with non-human primates. I would argue that elephants are smarter than some humans I know.
  • Elephants have been used as working animals and warring animals in Africa and Asia. But, up until the mid 1970's, even zoos would use corporal punishment and negative reinforcement as a way to domesticate them. Now, however, it is common practice to use positive rewards to train the animals. Yay!
And here is your positive reward for reading my blog; the chance to buy an elephant necklace:)

Need more incentive to buy? Just use coupon code BLOG15 for 15% off:)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Black Cat, Good Luck!

This morning, I took my black Maine Coon cat Maeby to the vet. I had to leave her there for her "comprehensive" exam, and I am missing her already:( So, I'm going to blog about black cats...because, my emptiness is now your emptiness...

While black cats are often considered bad luck, that's not necessarily true throughout the world. I certainly don't think that they are bad luck, but that's probably because I am the pet parent to the single most beautiful, perfectly behaved, smartest black cat in the world. Wow, I am a crazy cat lady.

Anyway, here's some intel on black cats:

  • In Great Britain, black cats are a symbol of good luck. In fact, in Scotland, the arrival of a black cat at your door symbolizes prosperity. They are also considered good luck in Japan.
  • In some areas of the world, a woman who owns a black cat is believed to have many "suitors"...wait, are they calling me a whore? Maybe they mean popular...let's go with popular.
  • The most common mythology of black cats is that they are the familiars of witches. I love using the term "familiar". I'm going to start to refer to Maeby as my "familiar. Oh, but I digress...back to the topic. The black cats' association with witches is one of the reasons they are considered bad luck. Whatever, haters.
  • In Germany, a black cat crossing your path from right to left is a bad omen; but if one crosses your path from left to right, then that signifies good fortune......Seems like a black cat could just pace back and forth in front of you and you would be Even Steven.
  • The belief that black cats were witches' familiars led to the killing of cats in the Middle Ages. Oh, and hey- guess what happened after that? The rat population boomed which helped spread the Bubonic Plague. Well done, haters. (insert sarcastic font).
  • But, sailors weren't haters- they believed that a black cat on board a ship was good luck.
  • Sad fact- black cats are not adopted as much as other colored cats. In fact, some shelters limit the adoption of black cats near Halloween to reduce the possibility of the cat being used as a "living Halloween decoration" then abandoning the cat. 
  • Awesome fact: August 17 is National Black Cat Awareness Day. 
But, why only adopt a black cat on August 17. You can have your very own black cat necklace right now!
AND, use coupon code BLOG15 at checkout for 15% off.

AND, if you live in Colorado Springs, please vote for me for best local blogger in The Independent. Only 2 days left to vote. Here's the link to vote:

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Land of Enchantment

I just got back from a 6 day road trip to, and throughout,  New Mexico. No joke. And guess what? New Mexico is super great.

And its citizens- New Mexicans- are really, really nice. Like, "what the fuck is in your water that makes you so nice?" nice. Like, "wow, I feel like an asshole for not being as nice as you" nice. Like, "I want to offer you money for being so nice" nice. 

The state nickname is The Land of Enchantment, but I think it should be The Land of Ridiculously Friendly People. 

But let me back up and explain what I was doing in New Mexico.

A wonderful burlesque performer named Vivian Miran from A Guilded Cage Burlesque invited me to perform at ABurlyQ, a burlesque and sideshow weekender in Albuquerque. I was instantly flattered to be asked to perform burlesque out of Colorado, that I jumped at the opportunity. Oh, and I also accepted because Vivan Miran is super nice (see the aforementioned "nice" rant).

So, the husband and I decided to make a little road trip vacation out of it.

We started out by staying the night in Santa Fe. Previously, I had only driven past Santa Fe, so it was pretty cool to spend some time there. It's a nice (there's that word again) city. I thought all the adobe buildings were adorable. There's something rather charming about eating in an adobe style IHOP.  
Also, Santa Fe has this:

This is not the mailbox you are looking for.

And, more importantly, Santa Fe has this:

Let me explain. In Colorado, we do not have Trader Joe's. Our choices are limited to Safeway, King Soopers, etc. If you want something different, you have to take out a bank loan and shop at Whole Foods. Ever since I moved back to Colorado from California, I have desperately missed Trader Joe's. If there's not a Trader Joe's where you live, then don't bother researching will just be sad that you don't have access to healthy, fresh, extremely reasonably priced food.  Oh, and of course, the famous 2 Buck Chuck wine...which is now actually $2.99.

One more thing about Santa Fe. This is the first place that I tried lingua....and although "lingua" sounds like a French sex act, it's actually just beef tongue; you pervs. I tried it in taco form (minds out of the gutter, please). It was....well, it was a beef tongue. It might have been ok if it didn't still have the taste buds on it. I still haven't quite recovered from that. I will leave the adventurous eating for fat bald men on the Travel Channel. Not willing to take culinary risk, the next meal I had was at the aforementioned adobe IHOP.

The next day, we drove to Albuquerque. Here's a sign that greets you:
Good to know that Albuquerque has a sense of humor...I think. Albuquerque is a hip town; from what I could tell by my few days spent there. Prior to being there, my only impression of Albuquerque was from Breaking Bad. I expected to see a bunch of Brian Cranstons wearing hasmat suits and a great deal of tweaked out meth fiends. I did not see that. I just saw nice people. Oh, and green chili/chile. Lots of green chili.
We stayed at the Hotel Blue, a sixties era hotel that had been renovated with more modern amenities. But their pool was still straight up sixties style....My fellow Peaks and Pasties gals decided take a dip. We may or may not have been in compliance with the pool rules:
I'm pretty sure we weren't supposed to play in this fountain; but it really did make for a cute picture. And really, that's what's important. (in picture from left to right: Jacy O'Feelya, Cherry Glitterbomb, Ruby Sparkle, Whiskey Darling (me)).

On Saturday night, I was fortunate enough to perform at the historic Sunshine Theatre. The theatre opened in 1924 and showed first run movies through the 1970's. In the 1980's, it was put on the historic registry and turned into a venue for bands. And burlesque:
This is a picture of me performing my "Drink" act at the Sunshine Theatre. I really am performing a burlesque act. I swear. Even though it looks like I'm a crazy lady who wandered on stage in her bath robe to drink some whiskey....well, that's kind of what happened....but this time, the venue wanted me to do that. I was honored to share the stage with some burlesque greats, including: Satan's Angel, Gyna Rose Jewel, Vivan Miran, IntoxiKate, Tallulah St. James, Kisa Von Teasa, Freya West, Siren Santina, and of course, my Peaks & Pasties girls- Lola Spitfire, Ruby Sparkle Cherry Glitterbomb, Bunny Bee, and Jace O'Feelya. It was an outstanding night!

Sunday, we went shopping on Central Avenue, near UNM. Central is also part of the historic Route 66, and some of the old signs and motels are still in operation. It was pretty cool to see that piece of americana. Then I stopped into a Starbucks.

Monday, we got up early, ate some green chili breakfast burritos (delicious) and headed to the Museum of Nuclear Science:
Perhaps I should take a moment to explain the jackalope. My husband purchased this carved wood bundle of joy at a farmer's market a few days earlier. We named him Gordon Lightfoot. He is our spirit guide. He speaks in a Canadian accent and tells us obvious, but useful advice- like "always wear sunscreen, ay."
Back to the museum. It was neat; thought provoking, heartbreaking, and interesting. And while we were there, they were filming a Nova special. Troy and I video-bombed it (no pun intended). Here's some of the pics from the museum:

 Replica of the Fat Man bomb (above) which as used by the U.S. on Nagasaki. I really didn't know how to pose next to this, which explains the weird look on my face. I mean really, how does one pose next to a replica of a weapon that caused the destruction of a city and took the lives of thousands of innocent people?
Navy plane (above). Troy instructed me to do a Top Gun pose. All I could remember is the scene when they played I pretended to set a ball.
Blurry Einstien puppet (above). Because, when I think about a serious discussion about the possibilities and repercussions of nuclear power, I think Einstein puppet.
Here, the museum shows some of the influence nuclear history has had on pop culture. One item that is missing: and sort of reference to Back to the Future. Also, the docent was also unable to answer my question of how much plutonium is needed to generate 1.21 jigawatts of power. I think I will need to donate my copy of Back to the Future to the museum.

After the museum we left Albuquerque and drove to San Antonio, New Mexico; home of the Buckhorn Tavern. The Buckhorn Tavern is home of "The Seventh Best Hamburger in the U.S." I have to agree. It was a pretty damn good burger. It might have been the seventh best one I've ever had. And I've had A LOT of hamburgers.

Full of delicious green chile burgers, we headed out for Roswell. But first, we made a stop in Lincoln, home to the Lincoln County Wars. Those of you who were fans of the movie Young Guns, would be interested in this...or was it Young Guns 2? I really don't care. We stopped because Troy wanted to. Here's a bullet hole from Billy the Kid. Supposedly.:

Next stop, Roswell.
Yep. Roswell.
We got into town around 5pm. And guess what? Everything is closed by 5pm. So, we checked into a hotel then went to one of the few places that was still open.... Wal-Mart. I'm not proud of this, but we did need to kill time. And, I found this there:
I drank alien beer and watched The Office reruns in the hotel room. Troy passed the time by messing around in photo shop:
Pretty decent work for dealing with an "alien beer" drunk model and a spotty internet connection. Good job, Troy:)

The next day, we ate breakfast. IHOP again, which is weird because I think I've been to an IHOP about 5 times in my life and 2 of those times were on this trip.

Then, we went to the UFO Museum. I really thought that it was going to be super hokey and full of nut jobs. That was not entirely the case. For the most part, the exhibits were well explained, informative, factual, and left open to your interpretation of the existence of little green men. Then there were the exhibits like this:
And this:
I like how it looks like I'm consulting on the "alien autopsy."

So, do I believe in aliens? Don't know. But I think it's fun to believe in aliens, so let's go with that.

Since there's not that much else to do in Roswell, except BELIEVE and Watch The Skies, we decided to start back home.

But, of course we had to stop in Santa Fe once again to stop at Trader Joe's:
Yeah, we filled up the car with candy, coffee, and booze. Not really all that different from what we would normally do on a Tuesday afternoon, but this time it was in Santa Fe!

And here's our bounty:
Mmmmm..... Diabetic coma......

So, our trip to The Land of Enchantment was a total success. I would recommend a road trip there, anytime!

And now, I have to pander.....So, want to vote for me for Best Local Blogger in the Colorado Springs Independent? If so, here's the link:  Just type in Whiskey Darling or Bottom's Up With Whiskey Darling....or the name of a blog that you actually read:)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Tiki Drinks? Yes, Please!

Well, the weekend is over. Monday is over. It's Tuesday. And if I was brainless and vapid like Hoda and Kathy Lee, I would call Tuesdays "Tiki Tuesday." But I am not that lame. Yet.

But I do want to reminisce about tiki drinks......

*Cue Martin Denny music as I stare off into space remembering Zombies and Scorpions past.*

Some say that Tiki Culture began in the United States in 1934 with the opening of Don the Beachcomber, a Polynesian themed bar and restaurant in Hollywood. The restaurant featured exotic rum drinks and rattan furniture. Donn Beach, founder of Don the Beachcomber is credited with singlehandedly creating the tropical drink genre with such drinks as the Scorpion and the Zombie. In fact, legend has it that Howard Hughes (pre-recluse days), consumed so many Zombies at Don the Beachcomber that he struck and killed a pedestrian one night while driving home. Allegedly.

There was also Trader Vic's, which started in Oakland and eventually grew to be a worldwide chain. It is currently the only major tiki-themed chain still operating. But, Don the Beachcomber found a new home in Huntington Beach. Side note- I have been to the relocated Don the Beachcomber and have graced them with my drunken charms over a few too many Dark and Stormies. Don't let the name Whiskey Darling fool you; I also enjoy my ginger ale and dark rum:)

Oh, and guess what? Victor Bergeron, aka Trader Vic, and Donn Beach both claimed to have invented the Mai Tai.  They did not, however, fight over the invention of the sugary drink hangover.

Which brings us to the tiki mug. Aside from being the BEST vessel in which to deliver alcohol to oneself, it is also believed to have been pioneered by Donn Beach. Tiki mugs hit their peak in the 1960's, then made a resurgence in the late 1980's and 1990's. Original tiki mugs from Don the Beachcomber or Trader Vic's go for a lot of money today, so if you got one from Nana and Pop Pop's trip to Hollywood in the 1960's, then you might want to do a little ebay research. Or stop using it as a pencil holder.

Don't have a tiki mug? Well, how about a tiki mug necklace? It's made by a girl who got really drunk on Dark and Stormies at Don the Beachcomber, so it's like, famous.

Monday, August 8, 2011

You Spin Me Right 'Round, Baby. Right "Round

Up until recently, I held a pink collar job at a HUGE radio conglomerate. I will not name this corporation, but most indie musicians would agree that this corporation might have been the lovechild from of a drunken encounter between pure evil and greed...and a complete disregard for anti-trust laws.

I spent 10 years working as a radio "insider." That was 9 and 1/2 years longer than I had planned. Aside from learning how to scam free food, I also learned a great deal about the music industry during my sentence...I mean employment.

Don't worry, this isn't a "blow this whole thing wide open/All the President's Men" type expose....I'll leave that for someone who gives a f@*k.

We'll just look at a little bit of history and trivia about the music industry.

  • Before the invention of the phonograph by Thomas Edison, the number one selling item in the music industry was sheet music.
  • By the beginning of the 20th century, The record industry replaced sheet music as the main force in music. 
  • One of the companies that formed out of the invention of the phonograph was the Victor Talking Machine Company (known for the Victrola) which would later merge with RCA, becoming RCA Victor. The Japanese faction of the company was known as JVC (The Victor Company of Japan), However, Victor severed it's ties with JVC during the start of World War II.
  • The first Grammy awards were held in 1959. Domenico Modugno beat out Frank Sinatra and Peggy Lee for record of the year. Wait....who?
  • The first CD was developed by Phillips and Sony in 1980. The first CD I ever purchased: Out of Time by R.E.M. Why did I buy it? Because I saw a cute guy at Hastings buying it....
  • The term "Disc Jockey" was first used in 1937.  
  • Ironically, Barry Manilow did not write the song "I Write the Songs." Watergate AND this trickery? The 1970's was a decade of deception!
  • 90% of all music downloads are illegal downloads. Yowza!
  • The LP record (Long Play for all of you children out there) was invented in 1948. And they are still collected by music aficionados and weird hoarders today.
  • FACT: Old-timey phonograph images make awesome necklaces: 

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Oh, deer!

Recently, my husband and I went to the Cheyenne Mtn. Zoo here in Colorado Springs. For those of you who have been to this zoo, you know that it is built into the side of a mountain. Thus, you often find the regular "mountain wildlife" just hanging out with the "imported wildlife." The day that we were there, the cutest damn thing at the zoo wasn't really part of the zoo- it was a tiny baby deer that had wondered on to the zoo grounds. It was so cute that I actually squealed. My husband was very embarrassed.

So, let's celebrate some cuteness today, shall we? Let's talk about deer!

  • Deer have great hearing and great sense of smell.
  • Deer can run up to 40 mph and jump 10 ft high.
  • Fawns are born with a lack of sent. This allows them to remain protected from predators.
  • Fawns can walk shortly after they are born. Fact: watching a baby deer walk for the first time is adorable. Fact: watching me try to walk after too many cocktails is not adorable.
  • Life expectancy of a deer is 20 years.
  • Deer can swim. Cuteness!
  • According to a State Farm insurance report, if you live in West Virginia, there is a 1 in 45 chance that you will collide with a deer while driving your car. *Sad face*
  • Deer can smell a human scent on foliage up to days after the human has left. Up to 8 days, if you are Colin Ferrall (he just looks like he'd be smelly).
So, I think we can all agree that baby deer are pretty cute. And here's a necklace that reiterates that fact:

Friday, July 29, 2011

Ziegfeld Girl, Part 5

Wow, today I'm finishing up my "mini-series" on Ziegfeld girls. I really didn't think I had it in me! Of course, my rigid schedule of working out and clean living took a serious hit in order to bring you these FASCINATING blogs, but I'll do whatever it takes to bring my brand of pseudo knowledge to you, my 5 loyal readers.

Did I ever mention that I want to invent a "sarcasm font?" If there was one, it should have been applied to the words "rigid schedule of working out and clean living," "FASCINATING," and "knowledge."

So, on with the blog.

Today, we are going to talk about Marion Davies.

She was born Marion Douras in Brooklyn, NY in 1897. She and her sisters changed their surname to Davies as it was believed that an English sounding surname would serve them better in the melting pot of New York during the turn of the century

She had stage ambitions at an early age and joined the Ziegfeld Follies in 1916. She appeared in her first feature film in 1917. It was called Runaway Romany and was directed by her brother-in-law. Hello, nepotism.

In 1918 she starred in Cecilia of the Pink Roses. This is significant because the film was financially backed by newspaper magnate, William Randolph Hearst. And this is where her real fame began: her decades long affair with the always married Hearst. To put this in today's terms, it would be like Rupert Murdoch having a publicly known, decades long affair with some burgeoning starlet. Let's go with Mila Kunis...only because I just saw a trailer for No Strings Attached 2...I mean, Friends With Benefits.

Hearst played a huge part in her career as well as her personal life. He pretty much started Cosmopolitan Pictures as a vehicle for movies staring Davies. There was one problem. Marion really liked, and was really good at, playing comedic roles. Hearst wanted her to play dramatic roles. It is said that Hearst's meddling in Davies career is what held her back from critical success.

It is also said that Marion Davies was the inspiration for the character of Susan Alexander in the film Citizen Kane, which is loosely based on Hearst's life.

Davies starred in many films and saved her money wisely. She even bailed out Hearst during some financial trouble by writing him a 1.9 million dollar check. Dang. She was also known for her philanthropic work. She donated a lot of money to various children's hospitals in California.

One more juicy tidbit: after Davies' death and the death of her "niece," Patricia Lake, Lake's family revealed that Patricia was indeed the child of Davies and Hearst, but had been raised by Marion's sister, Rosemary. Mmm Hmm. Told you it was scandalous.

So, there's a brief description on Marion Davies. Want more? How about a necklace: