Tuesday, March 31, 2009

HATE IT! New Kids Summer Return

No! No! Make it stop!! 

As if last Autumn's tour wasn't enough --- it was MORE than enough for me --- New Kids on the Block announced their upcoming Summer tour yesterday. And wait for it -- they also have a cruise too! Not only can you see the aging popsters at your local arena, you can sail to the Bahamas with NKOTB. Any chance that the ship can just keep on going?

Full disclosure -- I liked the New Kids the first time around in the late '80s. They were entertaining, the songs poppy and catchy. For a laugh, a friend invited me to their gig in my fair city a few months back -- and it was FREE, so why not?

Frankly, it was kinda embarrassing... for us *and* them. They sounded poor, the show presentation was dated and hokey... and they revived the Jordan Knight flowing-white-shirt-while-posing-during 'Baby I Believe In You' thang and it was laughable. We laughed and laughed... while full-grown women surrounding us screamed their little hearts out. Truly cringe-worthy and they're doing it all over again. 

Count me out. Even if it's free again... I'm busy!

(photo: www.people.com)

RATE IT! Marley and Me DVD Release

Today is a great day for DVD releases. 'Slumdog Millionaire' gets the home-viewing treatment today as does the film based on John Grogan's best-seller, 'Marley and Me.'

Such an adorable story, I can overlook what bugs me about Jennifer Aniston and still enjoy the movie! 

Monday, March 30, 2009

RATE IT! Monday Meh

It's Monday. This t-shirt kinda sums it up, don't you think? I couldn't say it any better myself. 

HATE IT! Bacon Bar

I...am...without words! 

Truly disgusting. Bacon and chocolate? Pfttt! 

Friday, March 27, 2009

HATE IT! Lipstick Jungle Cancelled

Another (good) one bites the dust.

It's finally been confirmed... NBC has stuck the knife into 'Lipstick Jungle'. Star Brooke Shields admitted as much at a party last night, speaking to E!: "We just were officially told it's finally not coming back...it's very sad."

The writing was on the wall when Brooke's co-stars, Kim Raver, Andrew McCarthy, Lindsay Price and Robert Buckley were all cast in new pilots or other current shows -- yet NBC dragged their feet regarding the future of the show. 

The news is not welcome by many -- including me! I'm so bummed! I loved the show, especially season two where the characters and plot lines really found their feet. The series did pick up higher ratings with its move to Friday nights (I bet NBC was hoping that it would *lose* viewers with this move but that plan backfired...), but the executives still threw down the axe anyway. Such a shame.

(photo: google image)

HATE IT! iTunes Raising Prices

The arrival of April just doesn't bring Spring showers. Come April 7, buying a hit single from iTunes gets a little more expensive.

Kiss goodbye to the 99 cent charge per song. iTunes clearly hasn't realized that many of us have lost jobs, or are having issues making ends meet, and have decided to hike prices up 30 cents to $1.29. As of April 7, all hit songs plus many deemed "classics" will have this inflated price attached. 

Are they just trying to nudge us all back to file sharing? Seems like it. 

RATE IT! Biz Card Mini File Cabinet

You can keep your fancy pants business card holders. I'd much rather have this old school file cabinet -- in miniature -- standing proud on my desk. 

This teensy-weensy cabinet holds 800 cards and includes alphabetical tabs to get you organized in no time. 

HATE IT! Cup Cake Floss

In life, there are many items which can be considered a necessity. 

Take... dental floss. It's one of those products that is easy to miss, even easier not to use. Those of us who *do* floss daily, know how integral to our daily routine a good dental floss is. For the life of me, I can't understand those individuals who never floss. No doubt, they get reprimanded by their dentist (that is, if they even go to the dentist...) and if people are giving them dirty looks, well maybe it's because their breath is questionable. It's true. All that rotting food held captive between teeth can cause odorous harm. Ugh! Floss avoiders! Consider yourself warned!

Now...take the delightful joy that is a cupcake! Quaint, cute, sugary -- guaranteed to spark a smile on even the grouchiest visage. Life would be very glum without cupcakes in our midst.

So somewhere a somewhat enterprising soul had the brainwave to take these two life necessities and allow them to join forces into something thought to be kooky and cool, Cup Cake Floss

HELL, NO! Not kooky. Not cool. Just plain stupid! I mean, really...who wants to floss with dental string that tastes like icing?! Flossing is meant as a tool to *remove* all remnants, tastes of food - not to reintroduce them! This ridiculous product gets a big, hefty 'hate it' from me. It's just plain GROSS. Back to the drawing board!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

RATE IT! Tongue Dog Toy

Does your dog have as good a sense of humour as you do? Find out with this Humunga Tongue Dog Toy.

Yep, it's exactly what it says on the box. A big ol' plastic tongue attached to a ball. When your pup chomps down on the ball, just the massive tongue will be on show.

Have a laugh at your pet's expense without dressing them up in a ridiculous costume. A wacky tongue is so much better!

RATE IT! Gossip Girl Sneak Peek ~ Remains of the J

Am I the only one who has been disappointed by the new episodes of 'Gossip Girl'? Two weeks straight, we've had sub-par story lines for Chuck, and the whole Blair thing is unbelievably stupid. 

Next week's episode looks more promising. Troublesome Little J, virtually absent as of late, celebrates her 16th birthday with Serena's party-planning expertise. Will Little J go off the charts again? I do hope so. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

RATE IT! Gary Neville - Liverpool Role Model?

The most hilarious sports-political news came out of the UK today. This little gem of ridiculousness has made my week!

A very misinformed Conservative MP suggested that Manchester United's captain, Gary Neville, should be regarded as "a good role model" to the disenfranchised youth of Liverpool. 

Tory MP Chris Grayling, spoke of kids growing up without any parental guidance, how youth could benefit from idolizing someone as dedicated & diligent as Neville. 

Sure, Gary would be a terrific role model. He didn't come from a privileged background yet found his way to the biggest footie club on the planet through sheer hard work & determination. He never gives up, has been with the same team since his career began as a teen... BUT.... and here's the kicker, Gary Neville *despises* Liverpool's football club and everything Mersey-based!

Gary Neville detests Scousers of all descriptions and his dislike is widely known. Liverpool press have reported that silly Mr. Grayling is a Manchester United supporter -- which is a crock, seriously. Any United supporter worth their blood KNOWS that Liverpool hates Gary Neville and vice versa! Mr. Grayling was hoping to sway Merseyside voters over to his corner but his misfired comments will have sent Pool folk in the other direction! (photo: Getty)

Thanks to Fourth for the tip!

HATE IT! UK School Curriculum

Upon this "news", I had to glance at my Filofax to ensure that today wasn't April 1st -- April Fool's Day!

The Daily Mail is reporting that the British primary school curriculum is at risk of being changed drastically ~ for the worse. 

Sir Jim Rose, the UK's former schools' inspector (whatever that is), has proposed changing the lesson plan so that Winston Churchill, the rise of the Nazis -- basically all of World War II -- plus subjects such as Queen Victoria, are scrapped and replaced with tutorials focusing on Twitter, blogging, Wikipedia & podcasting! Rose's proposal is due for publication in the next month, however, various news agencies caught wind of the plan & ran with the ridiculous idea.

Kids today are already lacking in certain skills (phonics, anyone?), and in many places reading, writing and basic history results are in a shambles. At least Rose's wacky suggestions are just that -- suggestions -- right now. Shame on Britain if they become a reality.  
(Churchill image: google images)

RATE IT! Cake Slice Pouch

Here's one way to welcome cake into your life without any of the guilt. A cake slice purse, pouch.....thing.

On second thought, I'd prefer the real deal, a tasty treat to accompany this doppleganger. Can I have my cake and eat it too?

But of course, I always do! 

For more cake purse genius, click here!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

HATE IT! Fish Training

Real, or special effects? The people at ThinkGeek emphatically state that this fish olympics is real. Buy their kit and you too can teach your minnow to play footie, run an obstacle course and more. 

I just think it looks like a waste of time and a bit cruel. See for yourself...

Monday, March 23, 2009

RATE IT! Spandau Ballet to Reform

Looks like the credit crunch is hitting not only regular folk like us! The pop world is seeing yet *another* reunion. Step into the spotlight London's favourite New Romantic sons, Spandau Ballet! Ah, bless! What better way to feel more comfy than to hark back to the '80s when things were better, safer... albeit cloaked in shoulder pads, neon and aerodynamic hairstyles for women *and* men!

Like many '80s heroes, the band dissolved due to infighting over royalties & bruised egos. What drove them apart -- money -- looks to be bringing them back together, back out of the woodwork! Sure, the Kemp brothers did their fair share of acting ('The Krays' -- bloody gross, but brilliant) and lead singer, Tony Hadley did the rounds playing old hits & making appearances on reality shows, so SB didn't really disappear for good. Their hairstyles... well, yes they were casualties of the break-up.

The band are formally announcing their intentions this coming Wednesday in London, but it's a sure thing that a new album & a tour are on the cards. I always preferred Duran Duran -- who *ahem* never did go away permanently like some others but I'm still pretty stoked to see what Spandau come up with.  (photo: Google image)

RATE IT! Gossip Girl Sneak Peek ~ The Grandfather

You've got to give Man-bangs credit for hanging in there! Looks like Nate is finally getting a story-line! Here's a sneak peek at the next new episode of 'Gossip Girl', "The Grandfather", airing tonight on the CW.

Friday, March 20, 2009

RATE IT! Google Street View

Google's Street View application is proving to be a huge internet hit! Now when you search Google Maps, you have the choice to see an actual 360 degree street view in some areas with several major cities in the UK just posted on the web. 

I've just taken a stroll down my favourite Pimlico street in London despite the fact that I haven't been back physically in four years. It's really cool and so addictive. I've traveled all over London today (with a side trip to NYC) but haven't gotten any work done. Whoops.

The venture is not all fun & games though. According to the Daily Mail, many Brits are unhappy that they have been caught by Google's cameras. Countless images have been removed from the site due to privacy concerns of those captured. Arrests, public vomiting and other funny/embarrassing acts have been up in full view until requests were made to take them down.

When was a walk down a *public* street seen as private? It's beyond me! If you're silly enough to be doing something illegal or cringe-worthy in public, you deserve what you get even if it is internet notoriety! 
(Google street view how-to from the Daily Mail)

RATE IT! Cool Shoes

What do you get the fashionista that has everything? How about some cool shoes! Literally! 

Take these tiny red heels, toss 'em in the freezer and voila --- fashion forward ice cubes. Well, actually they're a step above the typical icy drink cooler! These plastic heels, containing real distilled water, can be used over and over, and unlike most fashionable footwear, won't leave your bank balance in need of a lifeline. Party in style with these Tipsy Toes!

RATE IT! It's Raining .... Sprinkles!

Willy Wonka would approve!

Spring showers bring ... sprinkles, and one smart cookie of an ice cream cone is covering up to remain true to its intended flavour on this cutie pie tee! If only all showers were as enjoyable!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

HATE IT! Bye, Bye Ugly Betty

With rumours of its survival 'on the bubble', and doubts in some corners as to whether it will be renewed for next season, 'Ugly Betty' takes a temporary bow from our screens after tonight's episode. 

ABC is clearing the Betty-fied Thursday night 8pm time slot to test out other programs, namely 'Samantha Who' -- which I feel is horribly over-rated -- and the new sprog-com, 'In the Motherhood'.

Betty, Daniel, Marc and the Mode gang are scheduled to strut across our TV screens for their final set of season 3 eps starting on May 7. Ah, how I will miss them! 'Betty' has had its ups & downs but this season has been stellar, and full of those heartfelt moments that disappeared for a spell in season 2. Here's hoping season 4 will see the light of day. 
(photo: ABC.com)

RATE IT! I Love You, Man

Paul Rudd has a new movie, "I Love You, Man" opening tomorrow. He could read the phone book & I'd want to gawk. 

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

RATE IT! Gossip Girls Win Over Rolling Stone

Once upon a time, Rolling Stone magazine was the barometer of cool. It's not so much anymore but I guess some crinkly old guys in the editorial department were all keen for some 'Gossip Girl' eye candy. You can only do so many covers with U2 or Obama.

Blake Lively, Leighton Meester & some ice cream get the cover treatment for the latest issue. 

Well, they are better looking than Phish, and sexier than the bailout!

RATE IT! Unclutterer

I’m neat, me!

I have found a new love and want everyone to know about it! 

Along with my adoration of Manchester United, Gossip Girl and Dairy Queen Blizzards, I have this unwavering need to keep everything tidy. I wouldn't say that I'm obsessed -- no, my desire to have everything in its place isn't an itch that requires scratching *all* the time, but just once in awhile...once a day -- maybe.

Thanks to Real Simple magazine, I have found a new guru! Erin Doland is a contributer to this magazine of handy lifestyle tricks and her wonderful editorial from their March 2009 issue introduced her savvy to me. She's an organizational rock star and her stage is this info-tastic website, Unclutterer

Erin, Matt, Teri and their clean-up crew of top-notch writers & clutter-killers fill this site with daily dish on keeping your home, your office -- your universe -- smartly arranged and sane! Full of tips that leave you thinking, "Why didn't *I* think of that?", Unclutterer is a safe haven for messy Marvins and neat Nellies. And that's just the best part! It doesn't matter if your home needs a stuff-overhaul, or whether you are already compulsive about your organizational habits, there's something useful for everyone on Erin's site.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

RATE IT! One Week ~ Movie of the Year

Just over a week ago, I was enthusiastically posting about a movie that I wanted to see called "One Week". On Saturday, I was finally able to put work aside, and take in this film.

I'm SO pleased that I did. This movie... so wonderfully crafted, beautifully shot and lovingly acted... is the best movie that I've seen this year. I know it's early. 2009 is only 3 months old and many more celluloid treats are probably on the horizon but I don't feel that many of Hollywood's upcoming over-budgeted offerings will feature as much heart, joy, laughter or love as "One Week." 

Joshua Jackson as Ben is fantastic - you can feel his panic, his fear, his peace. Canada portrays his constant confidant, his side-kick on a week-long solo journey cross-country. Riding a second-hand motorcycle across this great land, Ben struggles to accept a cancer diagnosis that looks to consume him. Or will it? 

Canadians will feel immense pride watching our home roll by on film while non-Canadians will marvel at how gorgeous it all is. Majestic mountains, the ocean, endless prairies, ancient forests - yep, they're all here: one country, several landscapes that take your breath away. Canada is so massive -- Ben, in comparison, so miniscule yet his story is in no way inconsequential. 

"One Week" is quite somber at times but it's also life-affirming, inspirational & overwhelmingly entertaining. The soundtrack sewn-together with Canadian performers, Campbell Scott's narration & the slick but never intruding editing style all go hand-in-hand with the candid script & Jackson's nuanced performance. Family relationships especially the one he shares with his fiancee, are portrayed truthfully with an understated touch. In the wrong hands, this story could have very easy slipped into a treacley disease-of-the-week, made-for-TV mess, but it never comes even close to that fate. Ben's plight may be tragic & his actions arouse all sorts of emotions in the viewer, but his journey & what he learns as a result of it, is realistic and extraordinary. In dying, Ben learns how to live, and the fact that we get to accompany him to this destination is a gift for all of us. 

Monday, March 16, 2009

RATE IT! Supergirls Speak Out

Look in any school, any office - you'll find young women who are doing it for themselves and then some! 

Self-professed Supergirl, author Liz Funk, has written a new book called, "Supergirls Speak Out: Inside the Secret Crisis of Overachieving Girls". Her examination is insightful and at times, scary. We've all known those girls in school, or even in the workplace who seem clearly focused on succeeding at all costs. Nothing new, right? 

Actually, this unbridled drive to be the toppermost is switching into a more obsessive gear. Not only do these women aim to earn top marks at high school & college, but also to have the most enviable social lives and to present the most ideal picture to the world of what a smart, success woman is all about. This all-consuming quest can actually be seriously detrimental if left unchecked and allowed to flourish at an unhealthy pace. 

Ms. Funk ~ who authored this book at the age of 18! ~  took some time out of her hectic press tour to answer some pressing questions for us:

LTG: Who is to blame for the evolution of Supergirls? Is it a new phenomenon?

Liz Funk: My sense is that while the roles for girls in society have always been limiting and somewhat inflexible, never before has the female ideal been so demanding.  Girls perceive that they need to be perfect if they want to be loved and that they need to be constantly improving themselves, and that’s a new phenomenon (and it’s so time consuming)!  I think the media is partly to blame (and the lack of media literacy in Generation Y—many girls have trouble separating entertainment and reality in their television, and compare their lives to what they see on TV).  But luckily, it’s something that can be easily fixed.  When girls start being themselves and allow themselves to be publicly imperfect, other girls will follow suit, and there will be less pressure on girls, as a whole.  It’s starting a revolution by liking who you are!

LTG:  Your book mentions that social status is just as important as high grades yet we’re living in a pop culture society where girls idolize the likes of fluffy Paris Hilton over the hard-working, brainy Tina Fey – do you foresee a balance forthcoming, or even tipping towards Fey?

Liz Funk: Good question!  Because the women in the media are usually valued mainly for how they look—and not what they contribute or how smart they are—I think the celebrities who girls look up to indeed tend to be beautiful, often anti-intellectual women like Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, and Jessica Simpson.  But I hope things change!  There are some fun, pensive female celebrities who I really like, like Anne Hathaway, Katherine Heigl, and Tina Fey (love her!) who I hope that girls will come to admire more than the female celebrities who are often negative influences.

LTG:  One belief is that Supergirls multitask their achievements in order to distract themselves from “real” life – where should one draw the line in order not to get sucked into the Supergirl vortex?

Liz Funk: I think that many girls become Supergirls and make smaller tasks into HUGE productions so they’re busy all the time as a means to make themselves feel valuable and distract themselves from the idea that they feel very unsatisfied with who they are.  Girls need to find a sense of intrinsic worth—why they matter outside of what they look like, what they’ve accomplished, and how others perceive them. 

LTG: From your research, have you seen the Supergirl mystique continuing on into adulthood & life on the job?

Liz Funk: Yes! In general, if the Supergirl mentality isn’t confronted, it just keeps going (and often grows!).  There are lots of Supergirls on the job, who want to produce perfect work and are very sensitive to criticism, and there are a ton of “Supermoms.”  When we hear about moms who make homemade Halloween costumes for their kids and run themselves ragged trying to be the perfect mom, that’s definitely Supergirl behavior in an older generation.

LTG: Is it necessary for all Supergirls to crash & burn before realizing that their non-stop achieving ethic is dangerous for them? 
Liz Funk: My take is that although it’s great when Supergirls can realize they have a problem before things go too far (and develop an eating disorder or exhaustion), when young women have emotional meltdowns or what have you because of their Supergirl lifestyles, they’re poised to examine why they’re living the way they’re living and perhaps make some drastic changes to live happier, healthier lives.

Thanks for the chat, Liz!

Liz's wonderfully intriguing book is published by Touchstone and can be found at bookstores or on-line at Liz's website and Amazon.com.

RATE IT! The Bitch is Back

'Gossip Girl'! It's been six, very long depressing weeks without you. I've almost forgotten what you look like! 

And these costumes don't help matters! 

Ladies & gentlemen, welcome to 'The Age of Innocence' -- sure, feel free to snicker! Innocence just doesn't wash with this group of UESers! While the cast are all trussed up for their schools' production of the Edith Wharton classic, the GG writers decided to give tonight's return episode the more fitting title, 'The Age of Dissonance.' Yep, that's much better, thanks. 

Plenty of hi-jinx are on the cards for our favourite spoiled brats. Shame ~ Chuck appears to get short shift in this episode with a weak & quickly put-to-bed story line; we wait ALL this time and the man of the GG hour is shuttled out of our view? The alternative -- Man-bangs Nate is front and centre in many of the leaked photo stills so I think we'll be meeting his long-lost Vanderbilt relations sooner rather than later. Too bad this trotted in stash of blue bloods won't include *real* Vanderbilt scion, Anderson Cooper! Now *that* would really make GG an over-the-top viewing experience!  (photo: the CW)

Saturday, March 14, 2009

RATE IT! England's Team Meets Smithy

Last night was Comic Relief in the UK -- the annual event where famous Brits from all different walks of life come together for some laughs while they raise mega-bucks for charity.

One gem involved a run-in between England's national football team (including Becks) with 'Smithy', a beloved comedy character from the hit TV show, 'Gavin and Stacey'. I knew that Peter Crouch had quite the sense of humour -- too bad the same can't be said for a few of the others! While David Beckham just can't stop giggling...

Friday, March 13, 2009

RATE IT! Ricky Gervais & Elmo

Ricky Gervais and Elmo have a laugh - or five - on Sesame Street. Out-take fun! Elmo is quick on the up-take as Ricky meets his match!

RATE IT! Love Letter to Japan - The Bird and the Bee

Time for a gorgeous musical interlude! Sit back and enjoy this clip from a recent Jimmy Kimmel appearance by the fantastically brilliant, The Bird and the Bee. 

And for more on The Bird and the Bee, click here.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

HATE IT! ER Bandwagon Jumping

Yes, I am bowing my head in shame. I *am* part of the problem -- for tonight and the next few weeks too, I will be scrambling back aboard the 'ER' bandwagon to pay witness to the final moments of this long-running TV hospital drama. Do I feel guilty? Hell, yes, but in my defense I also think that I'm a little bit justified.

Back in the day when the series first dawned on NBC's schedule alongside 'Friends', I was an ER fanatic. Thursday at 10pm, I was glued to my set, watching Drs. Greene, Benton, Ross, Carter and Lewis, and Nurse Hathaway - "treat 'em, and street 'em", as feisty Dr. Lewis would proudly say. A few years in... the main actors began to depart and the replacements didn't quite cut it in my eyes. My ER curtain call was beckoning, and I, too, left County General, never to return. 

Well, never say never... as I am planning on re-visiting the ER this evening, to gawk at the hopeful return (and romance?!) of Doug Ross (George Clooney) & Carole Hathaway (Julianna Margulies) as well as fellow alum, Peter Benton (Eriq La Salle), and Susan Lewis (Sherry Stringfield). I'll be so far out of the loop on storylines regarding the current rotation of docs and nurses, but it won't matter as they're not who I've come to see. It's rare nowadays for TV shows ~ for *anything* really ~ to last so long on the pop culture radar. It's a major TV event watching such an icon take its final bow. 

I'm sure that I won't be alone either! The *final* two-hour ER episode will air on NBC on April 2nd. 

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

RATE IT! Magnetic Obama

Well, everyone including Oprah breathlessly enthuses that President Obama is *so* magnetic...

And so he is ~ he really is! Obama magnets are here!

Now US Prez Barack can play dress up on your fridge. Choose from various outfits: power suits, superhero tights, even his homegrown Hawaiian attire -- as well as Presidential accessories including the red phone & press room podium. Make your President truly work for you as you see fit. Shame the soon-to-be White House pet wasn't included! Maybe next time... 

RATE IT! Old School Condiments

This nostalgic keeper of condiments is so nifty I don't even care if it works, or saves space! 

A picnic table playing host to a diner-style ketchup, mustard and salt & pepper. My only complaint -- no space for a vinegar container. Yes, my British roots *are* showing!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

RATE IT! Cooking with Jimmy, Mario & Pals

Cooking segments on TV shows never go to plan. In this clip from Jimmy Fallon's Late Night show last week, he's joined by acclaimed chef, Mario Batali to make, well.... I have no clue what it is they're attempting to create! They're joined by Drew Barrymore and Chace Crawford who seem more interested in chatting between themselves than delivering any foods for Batali's recipe. 

Watch for Drew's slip of the lips... and Jimmy's comment regarding being a chef or a late night TV host. Wacky and silly - me likey!

For more Fallon fun, check out this dance-off with Cameron Diaz

RATE IT! School House Rock Magnets

When I was little, part of the fun of watching Saturday morning cartoons was the educational interstitials that sang out during commercial breaks. 

Before the days of Canadian cable substitution (Canuck cable providers like to 'cover up' American ads with commercials from the Great White North when both a Canadian & American channel are airing the same program - yawn!), we used to get *ALL* American commercial content -- and during kids' programming that meant School House Rock intersititals! These cartoon, sing-a-long gems of learning -- featuring mathematics, grammar, even US history -- caught our kiddie eyes and had us following along & learning at the same time. These pieces were so fun and entertaining, we didn't even wise up to the fact that we had just learned our 8x tables. 

These learning aids are no longer broadcast on American TV but can be found on DVD, CD and now on magnets. Really cool! Conjunction Junction... I'm Just a Bill -- the faves are all here, granted Figure 8 & the Noun song are missing but as every kid from *my* generation knows, you can't always have everything!

Monday, March 9, 2009

RATE IT! Happy 50th, Barbie!

On March 9, 1959, the first Barbie doll was introduced to the world at the New York Toy Fair. 

In her lifetime, Barbie has seen much change in the toy world. Once the most popular plaything for young girls, today she's often overlooked. Video games and other technology-based toys have pushed dear Barbie into a lesser role in the playroom. Seems kids today do not require the use of their own imaginations, preferring to be spoon-fed by all the mod cons. 

Oh, what fun young girls are missing out on! The clothes, the glorious outfits! Some were even made by our Mums. The Barbie camper, swimming pool, airplane, dune buggy and apartment complete with elevator!  Yeah, it was a much more innocent time before the advent of Guitar Hero, iPods and the Wii but sometimes it feels like it was a much more heart-felt time too. Imaginations were cherished, encouraged to grow. 

Regardless of what clique Barbie travels in, regardless of her popularity, she'll always be an icon. 

Happy 50th Birthday, Barbie! Enjoy your birthday celebrations. If only us mortals had such fuss made of us! DJ AM spinning at your bash, Heidi Klum amongst the invited, and designers a plenty queuing up to dress you - how lucky!

Friday, March 6, 2009

RATE IT! Andrew McCarthy, Gossip Boy

Ouch! The survival of 'Lipstick Jungle' is not looking good...

Andrew McCarthy, former Brat Packer, and recent star of 'LJ', has been cast in the 'Gossip Girl' spin-off as Lily's father. With this role, McCarthy is shifting full circle. The GG spin-off is set in the 80's, the decade we were first introduced to McCarthy in movies such as 'Class' and 'Pretty in Pink'. 

I'm of two minds of this casting. It's terrific to have him on board for the spawn of GG, but I hate to see the demise of 'Lipstick Jungle.' Lindsay Price has also been lured away, having joined ABC's 'Witches of Eastwick' pilot. No official word on the fate of 'Lipstick Jungle' has been announced but it looks like the writing is already on the wall. (photo: Getty Images)

RATE IT! One Week

Most movie goers are probably in rapture today over the long-anticipated release of the 'Watchmen' movie. Me, I *really* want to partake in 'One Week', a Canadian indie flick that also graces theatres in Canada today.

Starring Joshua Jackson, star of 'Dawson's Creek' & 'Fringe', 'One Week' centres on Ben, a young adult diagnosed with cancer and no hope of survival. Ben abandons his old life, his girlfriend & family and sets off on a cross-Canada motorcycle trip to clear his mind, accept his fate, and live his final days as fully as he can muster.

The movie has been described as a love-letter to the country, to wonderful music -- and thus it seems fitting that Jackson has been cast as the lead. A Canadian boy done good in Tinseltown but still free of many Hollywood entrapments to return home to tell such a moving yet tragic story... a story of a true 'hero', a young man facing his mortality bravely and with passion.

'One Week' certainly won't have the glitzy budget, star-power or box office success that 'Watchmen' will have, but it will offer more heart, drama and meaning than 'Watchmen' could ever dream of. I know which movie I'd rather see. 

HATE IT! Sushi Purse

Ew, something's fishy! 

Can't say that I'm a fan of this vinyl sushi coin purse. I guess you have to be a connoisseur of raw fish to truly appreciate this accessory - and I'm so not that person!

Obviously there is a market for such trinkets -- sushi-inspired erasers, jewelery -- it's all out there! I'd much rather cart around this Hostess cupcake-esque coin purse.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

RATE IT! Fallon-Diaz Dance-off

New 'Late Night' host and SNL alum, Jimmy Fallon, stages a dance-off with guest, Cameron Diaz. Jimmy really should know better than to take on Cameron -- queen of booty shaking!

RATE IT! Creative Cursing

#*!&$@#!! Yeah, I'm tired of all the over-used curse words too. Seems these days it's impossible to spout off a swear-zinger that will slay your intended recipient - and where is the satisfaction in that?

Fear not, someone has got your back. Surprisingly, it's two women! Sarah Royal & Jillian Panarese have created this wonderfully snicker-worthy tome of curse combinations. 'Creative Cursing' offers word-laden pages that flip! You can let your fingers do the talking and flip towards the most powerful, awe-inspiring curse you can craft! 

Don't just flip the bird...flip this book!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

HATE IT! Finger Hooks

Ew! I'm a bit weirded out by these finger hooks. I mean, really - who would want what looks like severed digits affixed to your wall, holding up your hat, dog leash, whatever...

They're creepy! Unless your name is Hannibal, I think you should pass on these grizzly hooks. Two unsevered thumbs down. Ick!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

RATE IT! Owen Hargreaves.... Finally!

Finally! After months waiting for news about his double knee surgeries, CNN has put up a story about Owen Hargreaves and Dr. Steadman, the Specialist that has (hopefully) saved his footie career (just skip through the golf stuff at the beginning). The story was shot about a month or so ago when Owen was still in Colorado. Now he's back with United in Manchester, working towards an August return!

Thanks Fourth for your help!

RATE IT! Vanity Fair Has a Sense of Humour

Who knew? Seems 'Vanity Fair' is not too far up its own *ss to have a laugh at its own expense.

Remember that "arty" Annie Leibovitz VF cover from March 2006 that featured designer, Tom Ford lounging with an in-the-buff Scarlett Johansson and Kiera Knightley? Well, Annie has returned to the scene of the fashionable crime (so to speak ) to showcase the new kings of comedy: Paul Rudd, Jonah Hill, Seth Rogan and Jason Segel -- in the April issue of 'Vanity Fair'.

With the frosty Winter *still* digging in its claws, and the markets in perpetual free fall, we all need a laugh. Compare the original pretentious Annie shoot featuring Tom et al to this howler above by clicking here

RATE IT! OMG Returns!

Those CW folk love a good tease! Here's the latest trailer they've released for the return of new episodes of 'Gossip Girl' on March 16. 

Nate and Blair? Say it ain't so!

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