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POP CULTURE 101

POP CULTURE 101

We Need To Talk About Kanye

Okay, considering all the press he’s been getting this week alone, we really don’t NEED to. But we should.

So we are.

For the clueless, the rapper most of us hate to love has been on some serious shenanigans as of late while on tour, from announcing he didn’t vote but if he did…it would have been for Trump to storming offstage to rambling frustrations at Jay-Z and Beyonce’ for not calling him enough, winning VMAs without him and not bringing Blue Ivy to play over at the Kardashian household.

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Girlfriend, please.

Kanye is like that unpredictable cousin that talks too much that’s super talented and you want to see do well in life, because you know he can. As the list of Hashtag Too Much continued to grow, the charades came to a screeching halt this week as after cancelling the remainder of his tour, and Kanye West was hospitalized for a “psychiatric emergency“.

Anyone following West’s career from the beginning knows it’s been an interesting one. From his breakthrough after surviving a damaging car wreck, his thought provoking albums, his marriage, his stage appearances, to of course, the loss of his mother 9 years ago this November. Which honestly, is when the world begin to see a very different version of Kanye West.

Death is complicated. And of course to one never experiencing that on various levels, it’s difficult to truly explain.

Thinking about it on the surface, it’s like Why?. When you die, it’s over. Done. Fineto. However, it’s in afterlife when the ones surrounding are left living to deal. You don’t realize the impact you left on someone until you are gone.
And we all deal differently. Some cry, some don’t. Some stay busy and get their best work done, some don’t do anything for some time. Some obsess over it. Some don’t deal with it at all for time to follow. Some do all of the above.
We pretend we are 100% okay because it’s the “normal” thing to do, not wanting to seem depressed or a Donald Downer in front of everyone all time. It’s been three years already, I shouldn’t be talking about this anymore. They’re not coming back so I need to get over it.
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POP CULTURE 101

The Moonlight Affect

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I live for Film. As long as I’ve been alive and can remember, I always have. Growing up in a household with an alcoholic mother and an abusive step-father, it was one of my only escapes from the real world outside of a pen, notepad and playing dolls. I held on so much to all the fantasy world I could I didn’t stop playing dolls until I was about 16–the diving into a different world via writing never ceased. Clearly.

I didn’t know the term, but I knew early on both of my parents were alcoholics. If it wasn’t for alcohol, they may have never even met. If it wasn’t for alcohol, my father would probably still be alive. My father, also a businessman, workaholic and one of the boldest humans I knew next to my mother. I, for sure have some of his temperament and a lot of his mother’s looks–he caught me once as a child trying to steal her picture for my scrapbook out of his office. He never introduced me to his side of the family and although he never hid the truth I was his only child–most of my interactions with him felt like business than personal with only monetary support.  Beggars can’t be choosers, right? I didn’t genuinely feel  my father loved me until my high school graduation when he dragged himself out of bed on crutches to walk the endless pavilion just to see me graduate. What he lacked overall in family skills and the absence of his own, my mother’s parents made up for ten times over. I was seven when they moved me in with them and away from the chaos I currently knew under the roof with my mother.

My grandparents are the strongest people I know. They’re survivors, hard working and where I get my love of story telling from. You could listen to my 6’8 grandfather talk all day and my 5’2 grandmother was so loud you had no choice but to listen. They never understood my need to be creative, but they always supported down to just placing empty notebooks they found on sale on my bed. My grandmother got so curious to what I was doing with them one day she read some pieces and was honestly upset at the raw tone, but admittedly enjoyed. Our home was forever a place of realness, laughter and love. Being the new kid at 4th elementary school before second grade’s end, was not. My god-sister being the only familiar face I knew made it clear early on she was going to be everything but my friend, and thanks to her lead other kids followed suit–at school and in church, where she also attended. It wasn’t until a year later the quiet girl who always had her head in books and “the crackhead mother” punched a mouthy bully who got handsy is when it stopped. I was sent to the principal’s office, she was sent to the nurse and never bothered me again.

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POP CULTURE 101

Class In Session: 11 Lessons We’ve Learned From Prince

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Growing up, everyone has a story on music or films or series that they connected with early on and staked their way forever into their hearts for one reason or another. For me, those hands down Top 3 are The Lost Boys, Nightmare on Elm Street, and Purple Rain. Being raised by two parents heavy in working the club scene I was about five years old when I really remember being introduced to the world that was style, sexuality, tragedy, and glamour aka Prince Rogers Nelson–and I couldn’t get enough. From the moment that silhouette faded into the screen behind those fabulous purple letters PURPLE RAIN sprawled across calling attention to all that is dearly beloved, I was hooked.

Religiously watching the story of the creative tortured underdog, I eventually wanted to know more about this magical man who captivated my heart at such an early age, so I quizzed my parents on everything they knew about Prince. Was this story true? Where is Minnesota and when are we going? What’s eyeliner and where can I buy some? When am I getting a guitar? If my birthday is 10 days after his, does this mean we’re soul mates? What’s a Gemini?

By the time I was around 7, I was bit hard by the writing bug, heavily into my white balloon covered notebook scribbling every thought, fear, or idea that came to mind with the sounds of my dad’s vinyl record player blaring in the background. It became my favorite pastime and something I looked forward to every weekend when visiting him, and upon my arrival he always knew to put on your purple majesty.

Kids always play games, especially growing up opposite the rich side of the tracks you had to make your own fun. Ours was Prince and the Revolution, grabbing mops and brooms and swaying fast to the instrumental sounds of air and terrible adolescent voices. It was a known fact amongst my group of cousins and friends that I, was always Prince. The kid of my mother’s friend that randomly joined one afternoon didn’t get that memo, shoving me to the side shouting that I couldn’t be Prince because I was a girl, therefore needing to step to the left or right to play either Lisa or Wendy. Let’s just say that young man still may have a knot upside his head in shape of a broom stick and I was grounded the remaining summer. And I definitely played Prince that day.

And when it comes to The Artist, most of us have these stories. Where we were, what pulled us in, what inspired us on, what turned us on, what brought us down, and what pulled us through. Most can’t talk music in particular without mentioning his name. This realization was more than apparent upon breaking news yesterday that Prince Rogers Nelson passed away at the age of just 57. Almost needless to say, I needed a moment. I needed more than a few. I’ve definitely been sad in the past of some celebrity deaths, but this one hit me like a ton of purple bricks and I ugly cried as if a close family member died. An immense part of my childhood, my adulthood, my creative drive–felt ripped to pieces. Eventually pulling myself  and my eyeliner together, I of course had to take to social media and the response to Prince’s death was surprisingly soothing–reading all the impactful stories and seeing so much footage and never before seen photographs. The man was beyond legendary. And shouts to MTV for going MTV playing music videos again and taking a break from Teen Shore whatever.

And stories aside, most of us were given lessons. Let’s talk things we’ve learned from Mr. Nelson.

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LOVE + RELATIONSHIPS POP CULTURE 101

Sh*t We’ve Learned About Dating From Horror Films

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Over the weekend I got some down time to hit the theaters with friends and go see The Conjuringfor those of you unfamiliar it follows the story of the Warren couple who are also paranormal investigators whom step in to help a terrorized family from a dark presence at their new home.

Knowing anything about me one of the things high on the list is that I am a dedicated fan of the Horror genre basically since birth, and despite the fact that most releases lately have sucked, I had to go and check this film out front and center.

And I was not disappointed.

Based off of a true story (actually the Warren couple are behind the true story of The Amityville Horror as well), the film like most was slow in the beginning but definitely kept the tone of eerie throughout. The acting was on point and the scares delivered. Everyone, including myself for the first time, was hollering in that theater like a fool.

scaredI can watch things like Child’s Play all day, but put an antique doll in my face along with creepy old ladies in a house and there is a problem.

The film went on to gross $41.5 million over the weekend and it is solid proof that the Horror genre is not dead and that people still love a good story and to be scared.

But what I realized specifically after talking with a friend is that we live our own little Horror films in our everyday lives.

DATING.

And of course, there are rules and things to be learned.

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