Monday, March 31, 2008

A Blog Post About Blogging

It's pretty remarkable to me the impact that blogs/bloggers have begun to have on our society in recent years. Bloggers are getting book deals, becoming semi-famous, and perhaps the most amazing of all, making a living off blogging (If anyone knows how to do this, please let me know). And for what? Writing their opinions and views on whatever they feel like and posting it on the internet? Anyone with a computer, even an idiot like myself, can create a blog in two minutes and suddenly they have this authority to comment on whatever they see fit, without any real consequences.

Or are there?

The internet provides perfect anonymity: one can say pretty much whatever the hell they want, however scathing, and hide behind their computer screen. Unless you give some clue to your identity, no one has to know who you are or what you really do. But, God forbid you DO give personal information, and give too much of it; well, you're going to have hell to pay.

And chances are, your name is Julia Allison.

I've never said anything about her before because there are enough items on the internet dedicated to her already, and I've never commented on any of the Gawker items about her except to say "WHY DO WE NEED ANOTHER POST ABOUT THIS GIRL?! DAMN YOU NICK DENTON, DAMN YOU!!!" See, the thing is, I don't really have a problem with her. I know I'm supposed to hate her, at least that's what everything written about her is telling me, with the exception of the recent NYTimes piece, which has been claimed by several different people to be inaccurate. Anyway, there's not much information out there about JA that isn't some diatribe about how awful she is. To be honest, some of the comments people make are shockingly harsh. I always wonder, what has this girl done to you to warrant such scathing verbal abuse? Have you ever met her in person? Then what right do you have to say anything? Oh right, you're hiding behind the protective shield of the internet.

I'll admit it, I follow her on Tumblr (aka I read her blog), and what I've noticed in reading it is that, well...I kind of like her. Maybe. A little. I could--GASP!--see us being friends, her being the kind of friend that sometimes does really stupid things that annoy me but I still love her anyway. Whether or not this is relevant, my cousin is the one responsible for her getting her job with TimeOut NY, and we have friends in common at Georgetown. Sometimes I read her blog and roll my eyes, sometimes I vehemently disagree with everything she says, and sometimes I think she's spot on in her observations and insights. But the fact is, she's a human being, with feelings like anyone else. If any of us were put under the same scrutiny she's under, I'm sure people could find our faults and expose them. If any of us put ourselves out there like she does, we could get criticized all the same. But that's just the thing--we don't.

If nothing else, Julia is a perfect lesson in what not to do on the internet. I'm aware of the saga of her and Jakob Lodwick, and I'm not taking her side over his or anything like that. To be honest, I read his blog as well and I really like the things he puts on there. He's obviously a very intelligent and creative person, and that's where my judgment ends. The fact of the matter is, who am I, or anyone else, to be commenting on either of them? I don't know these people in person. I shouldn't have any right to say anything about either of them. But because they put themselves out there on the internet, and I because I have a blog, I can.

There are times when I struggle over what I should post and what's too personal. Anything you put on the internet can, and probably will, come back to haunt you, and it's safe to say anyone with a blog won't be running for office anytime soon. There have been times when I've referenced things that JA has posted as a way to rationalize to myself something I might post. Granted, she has a lot more readers than I do and is far more in the public eye than I am (thank God). But even so, I tend to hold back. Maybe she can be comfortable about broadcasting every detail about her personal life, and bravo to her for being that brave, but I can't. And I think personally for me at least, that's a very good thing. When I first made this blog, I had every intention of being completely anonymous. That has only lasted to a certain degree, but anyone could very easily hop on over to my Tumblr, which is much more personal on a "daily-life" basis, and see what I look like, get my email address, etc. Only a very small few of my "real life" friends read my Tumblr, but I wouldn't really have a problem with them reading it, though I do like the idea of knowing exactly who is reading it. I don't think I'd want my mom to see it, but otherwise I don't really mind who does. HELLO, IT'S THE INTERNET. If you're putting it out there, it goes without saying that you're aware that anyone in the world can see it. Sometimes I think people forget that.

There are people who read this blog who I know in real life, people who I feel like I know in real life but just haven't met yet, and people who I probably will never meet, and that's fine. As for anyone else, sure. If anyone actually wants to take the time to read what I write, that's great. There's nothing very informative, and I intend to keep it that way. I don't like to write about politics, business, etc because I know there are plenty of people out there who know more about any given subject than I do. But I'm the expert on my own personal experiences, so that's what I'll stick to. That, and bitching and whining, since it happens to be my forte.

Julia is supposedly taking a "hiatus" from blogging right now, which I think is the smartest thing she can do. That's not to say she hasn't been found in other mediums, but at least its a bit of a reprieve. I actually kind of miss reading her blog, if for nothing else but the entertainment. She's brave enough to put herself out there and be honest, no matter how many times she says something she shouldn't and regrets it later. Maybe she's learned her lesson, maybe she hasn't, maybe she never will. She is guilty of nothing more than loving herself (maybe a little too much) and being determined to be succeed by whatever means, and not giving a fuck who judges her.

If nothing else, the rest of us bloggers out there can learn one thing from Julia, and whoever else Gawker chooses to crucify this year: blogging, and the internet in general, can be dangerous, and anyone can be put on the chopping block. But if you're the one that put yourself there, don't expect much sympathy.

And God dammit Nick Denton, come up with a better way to get pageclicks. Please.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Yes, I am alive

Who sucks at blogging? ME. I know, I know. To be honest, I haven't even looked at my blog in so long that it wasn't even in my web history anymore. Hence why I didn't see any of the comments on my last entry until right now. Is it weird that I feel proud for getting my first anonymous, semi-rude comment? I have arrived!

Anyway, my only excuses are the following:
1. I have been in Mexico for the last week (legit)
2. I'm producing a feature documentary that's currently in development and it's kind of taking over my life. (legit)
3. I'm completely and totally back to work. (semi-legit)
4. I am too lazy to come up with complete posts and instead have become completely addicted to Tumblr. (lame)

Tomorrow, it's off to Westchester for Easter weekend. I'm going to the same house I spend Christmas Eve at, so it's sure to be a good time.

Happy spring!

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Public Service Announcement

Attention, gentlemen:

If you are trying to talk to/hit on a girl in a bar, the following behaviors will get you nowhere:

-Staring from across the room without making any effort to approach, but continuing to stare for the entire night.
-Grinding on the girl while she is trying to dance with her friends.
-Winking. Period.
-Putting your hands anywhere.
-Talking about your hedge fund/investment job. Sorry, nothing you can possibly say will get me interested. Save it for the second (or maybe fourth) date, when I might actually feel indebted to listen.
-Casually mentioning your Gucci loafers.
-Admitting you are from Staten Island.
-Saying you have a six pack.*

Believe it or not, every single one of these happened to me tonight. Normal guys, are you out there? Anywhere? Don't be shy!

*This one actually did not happen to be directly. Instead, the dude who was hitting on me actually had the audacity to approach one of my friends after I had escaped from him and utter the words, "Tell her I've got a six pack. Wanna see?" and then proceeded to LIFT UP HIS SHIRT AND SHOW HER.

As I'm sure you can probably deduce from this, he was the same person who admitted to growing up on Staten Island.

Also, why is it that so many guys assume that just because a girl is out at a bar, she wants to get hit on? Does it not occur to anyone that maybe I just want to go out and have fun with my friends? That perhaps I'm not trolling for men? I DO NOT WANT TO TALK TO YOU. Save your breath.



Monday, February 25, 2008

The Oscars That Almost Weren't

I'll admit it: the Oscars are one of my favorite nights of the year. It's like the Superbowl, except consistently more interesting. Of course, it's probably only interesting if you've seen any of the films that have been nominated, but that's at your own discretion. I figure that the excitement I get out of watching the awards is similar to how aspiring athletes feel when they watch the Olympics. Maybe not. Whatever.

I'm not going to recap the winners because if you didn't care enough to watch it, I don't care enough to fill you in. I will say the following:

-Amy Ryan should have won Best Supporting
-Thank GOD Juno didn't win Best Picture
-Apparently Americans aren't any good at acting anymore. (Every single acting award was given to foreigners: French, Spanish, British)
-Atonement got robbed

And most importantly...GLEN AND MARKETA WON AN OSCAR!!! Not only was their performance wonderful, but they beat out THREE vomit-inducing songs from Enchanted. And well-deserved. Dan works with them at Columbia (Records) and literally the second we all stopped screaming, his phone started ringing non-stop. I am SO PROUD of them it's unreal. If you don't own the Once soundtrack, buy it immediately.

Otherwise, most of my predictions (and everyone else's) were pretty accurate. It would have been a difficult year to be on the Academy I think, because there were a lot of really great films this year. I was a little worried that there would be a repeat of 2006, when there were four fantastic films and one abomination, and it won. (Crash, of course. Would have been more aptly named Trash. Or Trainwreck. Just saying. I'm not bitter.) In similar fashion, this year there were, once again, four great nominees and one sub-par one. When I first saw the trailer for Juno, I was really stoked for it. And when I saw it, I was...significantly underwhelmed. And I'm sorry Ellen Page, you are not acting, you are playing yourself. Not difficult.

Excuse the tangent. I am happy with the awards this year because my agency more nominations than some of the biggest agencies did, and some were victorious, so yippee for that. And despite the overall boring-ness, there were some notable moments:

-Gary Busey attacking Jennifer Garner on the red carpet
-Seth Rogen and Jonah Hill pretending to be Halle Berry and Judi Dench
-Colin Farrell and John Travolta sliding all over the stage
-Cameron Diaz proves she's blonde after all
-Marketa gets snubbed for her acceptance speech and is brought back out after the commercial break to finish it
-Martin Scorsese is allowed to give the award for Best Directing now that he's FINALLY won an Oscar
-James McAvoy. Enough said.

All in all, considering it was the 80th, I thought it was pretty tame. Especially considering the whole thing almost never even happened because of the strike. You'd think it would have been a little more celebratory. Jon Stewart was moderately funny but a little too tame, and there were a few too many montages.

And now, onto the MOST IMPORTANT THINGS...what they wore!

THE WINNERS: (in no particular order)

Jennifer Garner (in Oscar de la Renta)

Katherine Heigl (in Escada)

Keri Russell (in Nina Ricci)

Cameron Diaz (in Dior)

Amy Adams (in Proenza Schouler)

Anne Hathaway (in Marchesa)


Ellen Page

Jennifer Hudson

Tilda Swinton

Rebecca Miller

Diablo Cody

Speaking of Diablo Cody, not only does she have a naked woman tattooed on her arm and a dress with a way-too-high slit, she also wore these:

...instead of THESE:

Yes. That's right. Homegirl wore FLATS to the OSCARS. When she could have worn STUART WEITZMAN heels that are worth $1 MILLION DOLLARS. Why? Why? WHY?! You IDIOT.

But apparently all of these faux-pas are excusable because she used to be a stripper. Oh, all right. Sure. That's fine.


In case you were wondering--trends this year: red dresses, and being pregnant.

In closing, here is a video of the montage of all 79 best picture winners in the past, not including last night's winner. How many have YOU seen? (My answer: 47)

Sunday, February 24, 2008

I Am A Slacker, Make Poor Excuses

Yes, I know I am overdue for a real post. And guess what? This isn't one either. I'm a poor excuse for a blogger, I know. The fact is, I'm better at ADD blogging like on Tumblr unless I can form enough coherent thoughts to make a relatively well-written post. Anyway, REAL POST TOMORROW. I promise.

For now, some LOLcats for your enjoyment. I don't even like cats in general (I'm much more of a dog person), but these made me laugh.

Tomorrow: Oscar recap!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

This Makes Me Sad

Re-posted, from my Tumblr:

My uncle who lives out in Los Angeles sent me this email at 1:45am. I’m pretty sure he’s drunk. He’s been running around doing different jobs for most of his adult life and has pretty much been a drifter ever since he came back from Vietnam. He and my dad used to be so similar—he was so smart, went to Brown, on the right path, then he got drafted and when he came back, was never the same. Moved out to California and never quite found his way back. For a while, he was dating this woman named Joyce who was really wealthy and so he was pretty much living off her for a while, but he broke up with her in the fall. They bought a house in Palm Beach together and I guess they’re fighting over it now. Everyone in my family is kind of glad they broke up, because she was…pretty high maintenence. She was originally from New York, and twice a year would take trips back here. But not just a trip. She would bring an entourage of twenty friends, every night would be a huge black tie affair. One time she reserved the crystal room at Tavern On The Green…yeah. A little too nouveau-riche for my family. But she LOVED me for some reason. Maybe because I was the first one of the family she met, maybe just because I live in New York. Who knows? But I couldn’t not like her when she was always so excited to see me.

I love, love, love my uncle to death. He was always my favorite uncle as a kid because he was so funny and told great stories. I thought he was so cool because he lived in California and at one point was working in television (short lived, as they all were). But now, knowing that times are tough for him, I worry. I know my dad does too, but what can he do? He would never accept money. He’s always managed to land on his feet before, but for some reason I’m more anxious this time. Maybe it’s just because I’m getting older. I think part of the reason I feel the need to move to LA is because I could be close to him and keep an eye on him. Help him, if I have to.

I know it’s not my responsibility. But last year my mom told me that she sees so much of Charles in my brother, and as soon as she said it, I couldn’t believe I never noticed it before. They’re so alike. The broseph is already such a drifter. He’s older than me and I’ve been cleaning up his messes since I was fourteen. I fear, but I know, I may still be doing that when we’re older. I’ll be like my dad, he’ll be like Charles, if we even still manage to speak to each other when we’re older. I think maybe I feel the need to take care of my uncle because its the same way I’ve had to “take care” of my older brother.

Anyway, Broseph’s story is one for another time. Come to think of it, so is my uncle’s, because it’s long and complicated. But the email wouldn’t make any sense without some info. We’ve always been so close, and had such a bond, even though I only see him a few times a year. I’d have to be deaf, dumb, and blind to not be aware of all the hope and expectations everyone in my family has on me, especially since the Broseph has…had some trouble finding his way, to put it lightly. There’s a lot of pressure to succeed, in addition to all the pressure I put on myself. But Charles has never had any expectations, because he always knew I would do well. I never felt any pressure from him, I just always knew he believed in me. I think he wants me to have the success he never had. And he, more than anyone else, is the one I could never let down.

I forgot he spoke French, he used to speak it to me when I was little. I should send an email back in French, he’d be thrilled.


Voulez vous Be mon Valentine?

Qui est vous ankle…?

C’est manifique to think pour vous; quel your frustration level? As a doer & a goer, these weeks of rehab must be grande frrustro to the max, no pun intended. I have ‘slipped on ice’ many times in my career; I know the cost of foolishness. Welcome to the club; however, as you must have deduced by now, these times also allow you to step outside your calculated footprints, and engage a different lens-craft in your rueness. These new revelations may or may not have lasting power, but you can never argue with thyself they didn’t exist.

I’m sure you’re anxious to return to the tomorrow of your life & it will return as full as you imagined. Remember this parathenicies as a gift – in our self induced helter-skelter we don’t get many. I have total faith in your decisions & in your ability to see; be bold and boundless in your curiosity.

Me, I’m in a decent spot; life is a gift, $$ are becoming sparse – but attitude is forward & positive. Still vying with the Dutchess over the house – remain thinking 90-10 against any recovery, hoping guilt still has a chance. Just rec’d a V-day card quoting “Do you think we can make a fresh start… (con’t) I want us to hold on to our memories… She remains in total denial & has long become accustomed to disbelieve reality. To accord age with wisdom is a dangerous leap; people who don’t get real life early, never get it. To see is the power, not to have or hold; your vision is your greatest strength, it will always be your strongest ally - your feel is right, let it flow & grow.

Bon soir, mon amie.

Love you,

Ses Charles

Wow. The more I read it, the more I see the double meanings and second-level dialogue in so many things he says. This breaks my heart.

[Ding, ding, ding...the "this blog is getting too serious" alarm is going off...insert joke here.]