Flavor of the Week: How I Really Met Your Mother

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As we’ve come to know too well, the times are a-changin’. What once was nice and traditional has now become outdated and prudish. Girls bare more skin at Bar Mitzvahs than I do on the beach. Hell, they don’t even wear dresses to Bar Mitzvahs anymore. Now, it’s all about the crop top and shorts combo. I commend the trend, but when I have a daughter of my own I’ll make sure she relies on other “in” pieces… like oversized turtlenecks, for example.

My grandparents met through a mutual friend. My grandfather called my grandmother, introduced himself, and asked if she would “marry [him] this afternoon.” It was classy. My grandma wore white gloves on their date to the zoo. I’m all about it.

My parents met in standards more era-appropriate–on a college street corner on Halloween. Later that night, my dad serenaded my mom by playing her righty guitar upside down (he was a lefty). Slightly more edgy, but as charming as ever, to say the least.

I thought I’d share some ways for you to tell your children in ten or fifteen years from now about how you really met their mother–likely a story neglect of white gloves, potentially containing a good serenade (but only if one of you was, like, on molly at a rave or something like that).

1. “We liked the same @JewBoyProblems tweet. Then, I stalked her on Twitter and she seemed like the perfect balance of Long Island and sleepaway camp-cool for me.”

2. “As soon as I found out that he was @JewBoyProblems, I knew Bubbe would approve.”

3. “So, son, there used to be this thing called Tinder…”

4. “We were both waiting on line at Juice Generation and she complimented me on my desert boots.”

5. “We didn’t go to the same co-ed camp, but we had socials…”

6. “She made a naked video of herself and somehow every thirteen-year-old in the Tri-State Area got a hold of it. I used it as a conversation starter when we met in college.”

7. “My mom was her SoulCycle instructor.”

8. “I know you wouldn’t think that the Boca West club pool could be a romantic spot, but…”

9. “I was ZBT, she was SDT, and the rest was history.”

10. “We were on the same Westcoast Connection Europe teen tour!” (Funny sidenote: I went to the Westcoast website to find a photo to pair with this, but I recognized too many of the kids in all of the promos and didn’t want to make them feel super awk when they heard their face was plastered across The FYD)

11. “I held her hair back for her at a tailgate. She thought I was the nicest guy in the world.”

12. “We had friends in common and I kept liking all of her #tbt’s.”

13. “I was standing behind her in line at Pinkberry and offered to pay for her fro-yo.” (My husband to my child)

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On Fro-Yo

A couple of months ago, a guy friend jokingly told me that he would sue me because The FYD is a “fallacy.” He said it was a rip off for not properly representing its title. It’s true–I mention fro-yo every once in a while, but I don’t really write about it. On the exact one year anniversary of The FYD, I figured it would be a good time to start.

Frozen yogurt is a very generational thing, which gave reason to the titling of The FYD. Fro-yo is just as millennial as we are not because of the mass amount of chain stores spreading faster than wild fire through an unkempt bikini line, but because of the nature of the product itself.

Fro-yo is quick demand and quick satisfaction. Think fast food for the anorexic. We also believe we can eat more fro-yo than we can ice cream, which is really only half true. Sometimes, I eat fro-yo for lunch or dinner and never feel half-bad about it. If I ate ice cream as often as I did fro-yo (which may or may not sometimes be twice a day) I would feel much shittier, be 10 pounds heavier, and have to go to the bathroom a lot more. We like to think fro-yo is guilt free, which is exactly what we’re supposed to think. Obviously, like all things in life, it isn’t.

Sure, it’s low fat or fat free. But it’s still full of shit, and has enough chemicals to provide a seventh grade girls’ basketball team with full keratin treatments. Fro-yo is kind of like makeup. We can pretend we’re skinny because we make the choice to eat fro-yo and we can pretend we have good skin when we’re really just wearing a lot of makeup. But at the end of the day, you have to realize that you’re just using cash from the third night of Hanukkah to cover up your acne and you’re not losing weight by eating healthier ice cream. If you were actually skinny you’d be eating kale and not cake batter. We’re caught in the vicious cycle of deceit via the deadly sins of Sephora and (insert your go-to fro-yo place here).

You never have to settle on fro-yo. 21 flavors! 50 toppings! It isn’t like a fraternity mixer where you’re stuck deciding between the unattractive Jew and the semi-attractive goy that your mom would not approve of. We should take a moment and be thankful, because back in the day, it wasn’t always like this. The options weren’t always endless. Now, of course, they pretty much are.

Fro-yo started out as Forty Carrots at Bloomingdale’s, where wealthy mothers and grandmothers would take their dressed-up daughters on Saturdays. Today, we all love a good Forty Carrots Instagram. It’s the elegance and class of frozen yogurt captured in Lo-Fi. But fro-yo really rose with Pinkberry in NYC and LA. You could choose from two flavors (maybe three? My memory gets worse with age, ugh) and have the guy behind the counter put two toppings on–more if you had a privileged childhood with money to spend on the luxury of yogurt. Yum.

The problem with trends, like fro-yo, is that they usually die out. Then, they just become another throwback Buzzfeed article to post on your best friend’s wall. Like haha! remember when we thought fro-yo would make us skinny?! Now we just eat large gulps of air!

But I don’t necessarily think fro-yo is a fad. Yes, it’s artificial, but it’s also an indulgence. It’s one of the few things that allow us not to feel constantly shitty about how we look or what we’re doing and how we’re feeling. For once, society was able to provide our generation–a generation in which “plus size” is anything above a size 6–with something good. Kale, I love you, but you don’t always do it for me.

I used to think it was very mature of people to “get coffee.” When I got my license and started “chatting over fro-yo” with friends on weeknights, I felt like an adult. Funny, because in reality, I’m really just a millennial eating fake ice cream, and that’s all.


Flavor of the Week: 2013

Good bye fro-yo, good bye 2013.

Good bye fro-yo, good bye 2013.

Congratulations! You survived your hangover. How does it feel? Rewarding, I bet.

2013 is officially over and we are no longer in that awkward limbo state between Christmas and New Year’s known as “the holidays.” During “the holidays,” everyone talks about everything that’s happened over the past year as if the year has already ended. In reality, the next year hasn’t started yet, either. Our society sets aside a week for us to reminisce and resolute and think about the reasons why we hate ourselves and how we can strive to change in the year to come. The holidays are a strange concept–everyone kind of stops doing everything and doesn’t start real life until the next year gets here. It’s a week that, though it sits on the calendar, doesn’t actually exist.

Now that we are in a new year, I thought it would be appropriate to accurately and fully asses the year that’s passed us by–FYD style, of course. 95 (!!!) posts later and I think I’ve got a pretty good sense of what 2013 was about. Here’s the shortlist of what you really shoulda taken out of that wild year. As the Grateful Dead says, “Oh, what a long, strange trip it’s been.”

1. Your Facebook pro pic says a LOT about you. And by a lot, I mean 4,926 post views in twelve hours-a lot. 

2. The selfie had a revolution. It was the thing of the year, by far.

3. 2013 brought us Thanksgivukkah–a chubby JAP’s dream come true!

4. Every. One. Got. Mono.

5. Kimye is everything.

6. FYD lesson: the balance between being a bitch/playing hard to get and being a slut is very, very difficult to find.

7. Celebrate the anniversary of your Bat Mitzvah by handing out the leftover kippahs you’ve been storing, because there is always a bald man somewhere in need of a hat!

8. Tobi.com took over young women’s “trendy”/mundane going out clothing.

9. Everyone used read receipts. Then, they didn’t.

10. Miley came in like a wrecking ball.

11. We acted like chopped salad was just born, even though it wasn’t. Overpriced chopped salad was born, transforming the dirty water dog-type lunch into one better suited to the women taking over the workforce.

12. FYD lesson: your relationship with your boyfriend is really a threesome between you, him, and Facebook.

13. Everyone wrote about kale, but I wrote about it first. Trust.

14. Cady Heron would not have survived a plastics’ group text. That is why being a girl nowadays is so frickin’ difficult.

15. We speak emoji.

16. FYD lesson: there is a time to laugh, and a time to cry. There is a time to Instagram, and a time to mupload.

17. We were labeled the “me me me generation.” But millennials rock. We’re going places, and they can’t stop us and our selfies.

18. I read Fifty Shades of Grey while living in a rural Eurasian town of conservative Muslims. You might not remember that, but it’ll make you laugh.

19. I wrote my first post, “On Not Being a JAP,” for The FYD. But, obviously, there’s a little JAP in all of us.

20. A lot of other stuff happened that I didn’t get to cover. Gay marriage! Legal weed! Love! Loss! Sex! (GASP!) Breaking Bad! But, obviously, we still have 2014 for all of that.

Cheers to another fro-yo filled year of all of the above. May it bring you all overalls, muploads, selfies, shoe sales, peace, and low fat goodness.

 


Flavor of the Week: Thanksgivukkah

I effing love this

I effing love this

First, take note: my laptop does not spell check “Thanksgivukkah.” This holiday shan’t be red squiggly lined. It’s for real, people.

For a curvy Jewish girl/all-American like me, Thanksgivukkah is the best thing to ever happen. I get to eat until I vomit, and once I vomit all over my clothes, I’ll be gifted a new shirt to change into. How clutch is that? It’s like god is repenting me for my sins and giving me a soft cushion to land my fat ass on… do I sense a lil bit of Yom Kippur thrown in here?

If you’re still confused, Thanksgivukkah = Thankgiving + Hanukkah Hannahkkah, both of which happen to fall on the same day this year. It’s like a more generic and Judaically acceptable Chrismukkah. All in favor of an OC reunion to shoot a Thanksgivukkah episode, say “Shalom.” SHALOM, BITCHES.

The irony of Thanksgivukkah is that we have to be thankful for things like family, Buzzfeed as a news source, tempur pedic pillows, frozen yogurt, and our waxing ladies while at the same time allowing ourselves to be spoiled by aunts, uncles, grandparents, parents, and, if you’re lucky, significant others.

A lot of people are literally trying to combine Thanksgiving and Hanukkah by making latke-flavored turkey stuffing or baking gelt-bottomed pumpkin pie. Here are some creative ways I recommend for combining two of my all-time fav holidays:

  • Buy a pet turkey and bobby pin a kippah to its head. Don’t worry about having a wild turkey in your home, it’s totally kosher. Just have it chill with your dog or something.
  • Stuff your turkey (your dinner turkey, not your pet turkey) with Free People gift cards for the whole family to enjoy. This is also known as the low carb option.
  • Only serve Manischewitz. Then again, you should always only serve Manischewitz.
  • Dress code required: come as a pilgrim, a Native American, or a rabbi (with payis).
  • Only cook with butter, because obvi, there’s barely any oil left.
  • Serve pumpkin fro-yo. It’s the perfect combo of “Thanksgiving festive” and “Jewish girl swag.”
  • I’ve mentioned this before, but wear your tallit as a scarf. I’m really into this these days.
  • Use menorahs as mood lighting. It’ll be the chicest Thanksgiving ever.
  • Go in a circle and have everyone say which Judaism-associated sorority or fraternity they are thankful for.
  • Set a place at your table for Elijah. I know, I know, he’s the guy from Passover, but Elijah references in every day life make everything seem more Jewish.

Happy Thanksgivukkah! Don’t forget to hit up the black Friday sales, because every Jew would want you to celebrate a national holiday with a good bargain.

Image via


On the Importance of Intelligent Boyfriends

Last week at lunch with a friend, I was discussing the nitty, gritty details of the status of my current love life. When you talk about boys with a friend, the conversation can always be sure to lead in many different directions–what we like about them, what we don’t, who they are, who we wish they would be. This last clause got me thinking about the minor qualities boys have that make them come up a little short (pun somewhat intended).

Each girl has, in her mind, a specific list of what she likes about boys in a particular order. First, the list is catalogued by category. For example, first could be height, second attractiveness, third quality of humor. But then, she will within each category have another ordered list of preference. If the most important quality to her is height, then she will either prefer shorter guys or prefer taller guys. This list will appear in a different order in everyone’s mind. So while two girls may both prefer taller guys, the importance of height in general could be absolutely key to one and totally irrelevant to the other. I really hope you’re hearing me here. I’m aware of how ridiculous I may sound.

Height never bothered these two lovebirds. Very chic use of metallic, boys.

The one category out of the many existing (there are hundreds, of course) that my friend and I discussed over seared tuna salads was intelligence. Recently, a close, and very smart, male friend of mine told me that he always imagined me “ending up with someone very intelligent.” Because of the circumstances in which he divulged this intriguing comment (sitting outside of a fairly large party, surrounded by a group of people loudly socializing with red solo cups), I didn’t take it to much heart upon its release from his mind into the real world. A few weeks later, however, I found that I couldn’t stop thinking about that comment. What does it say about me that he thinks I should be with someone of high intellectual ability? What does it say about what he thinks of me? And, most importantly, how crucial should it be that we have smart boyfriends? 

I feel like this could go all the way back to the early 1900s in the era of Elizabeth Cady Stantons and Susan B. Anthonys. If we truly believe that, modernly, there is no need to conform to traditional gender roles within male-female relationships, then I wouldn’t even have this question. Technically, it shouldn’t matter if my boyfriend was smarter than or was as smart as me because it would be absolutely fabulous if I, being the female, was the breadwinner while my trophy husband stayed home and compared strollers with the Irish au pair next door. I often consider myself to be a pseudo-feminist that appreciates a relationship of reversed roles. However, when I found myself seriously questioning exactly how smart any boyfriend of mine should be, I realized that the traditional “couple” stereotype still, naturally, exists. At lunch, my friend and I both admitted it–we want smart husbands. Sorry, Elizabeth.

Boo, you whore.

After our discussion of my guy friend’s comment at the party, and our admittance that we are not as feminist as we once thought we were, I put the big question out there… should it bother me if I’m ever smarter than someone I’m with? I automatically  backtracked to every boy I had ever liked (whether the feeling was mutual or was not) and thought about just how smart he was. Her response was quick, and, in my opinion, wildly brilliant: “Well, now you’re asking something bigger,” she said. “How do you define ‘smart?’

Men, as confusing and complex as they are, can be smart in many different ways. Some babes may be impressed when their guy can speak about football for three hours minimum. I’m not this type of girl. I’m much more impressed when I have a male friend over who is able to survive a philosophical, intellectually-stimulating conversation without sounding stupid. It is not hard to keep a conversation going when you’re talking to a lot of Jewish people; it is difficult, however, to sound like you have an interesting/intelligent opinion every time you open your mouth.

I think that I consider someone “smart” to be someone who is not only good at participating in discussions about current events, societal theories, whatever is “in style,” and historical happenings but, in addition, enjoys these conversations. Then again, I also am interested in having a boyfriend that is willing to go shopping with me and will not make me feel fat when he takes me for fro-yo but then doesn’t get any himself. That is rude, obviously. I think smartness can be measured in a multitude of ways. What it comes down to, I believe, is how he handles a relationship. This can possibly gauge more light on his level of intelligence than anything else. Lying is dumb (it never works in your favor, buddy), ignoring me is dumb (if you feel the need to ignore someone, you shouldn’t be dating her), and taking someone else’s side is dumb (you don’t always have to agree in a relationship, but you always have to be a team). I hope I don’t sound too high maintenance. I don’t sound too high maintenance, right?

So, boys, as the female race, this is all we’re looking for. It’s not too much to ask. Really.


On Being a “Millennial”

Earlier in the week, Joel Stein wrote a cover story for Time magazine about our generation, the “millennials,” and how narcissistic we are. The Fro-Yo Diaries embodies the millennial attitude (from my perspective, of course, and that perspective clearly differs from Joel Stein’s). But, just to give you all a run for your money–whatever that expression means (what a millennial comment of me to make)–I’ve decided to write about my most “millennial” moments. I would encourage everyone to read Joel Stein’s article, but you can only do that by obtaining a physical copy/subscription of Time. Obviously they restrict us from reading a full copy of the article online because, like, if they did, that would be so millennial of them.

Millennial Moment #1:

My mom often criticizes me for making a mess and then not cleaning it up. The other day, I was eating some dried apricots from their plastic container and decided that for the first time in my life, I would put them back in the cabinet when I was done with them. As I was standing in front of the cabinet, seriously struggling to re-seal the lid, my mom charged into the kitchen. This is the conversation that ensued:

Mom: Hannah, will you move please?

Me: Hold on, I’m just putting this thing away.

Mom: HANNAH I HAVE NOT EATEN ONE THING TODAY, NOT BREAKFAST, LUNCH, OR DINNER.

Me: OK, OK, I’m done. Relax. I’ve made dinner for myself the past two nights. It’s not a big deal.

Mom: DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND I HAVEN’T EATEN ANYTHING ALL DAY????????

Joel, how horribly rude and obnoxious was it of me to try to put my apricots away?!?!

Millennial Moment #2:

I make my parents pay $175 for me to have a 45 minute session with my therapist twice a month. Now if that isn’t selfish of me, then what is? I mean, anxiety doesn’t even exist anyway. And young adults don’t have problems. And young adults aren’t allowed to complain. Because we aren’t spending 14 hours of our day studying and working. Because instead we’re playing on our iPhones. Which we solely use for Tinder to meet fake people that that boost our egos, and not for medication-reminders or to set alarms so we make sure our two hours of sleep don’t interfere with getting to class on time or to keep track of our schedules in a calendar (just like you do) or to, God-forbid, have a means through which our neurotic Jewish mothers can use the “Find My Friends” app to see where we are at all times. No, no. Never any of that.

Millennial Moment #3:

I went back through all of my text messages and counted: on Saturday, May 11, I sent 64 text messages. This is actually a really low number for me, as most millennials spend their Saturday afternoons super hungover from going to wild techno raves the previous night, which we do, wearing neon clothes, practically every weekend. But if I went back to my texts from Friday and counted–which a millennial would never do because that requires too much manual labor (you know, all that scrolling)–I’m sure my stats would at least be tripled.

Millennial Moment #4:

Please watch this video in which Joel Stein tries to be a millennial for a day.

Then, ask yourself: have you EVER sexted by saying “Do you have time to have sex tonight?” No, obviously you haven’t. Millennials would never waste that much time on writing a text message. Obvs, we love to abbrev (Obviously, we love to abbreviate). Our sexts would look a lot more like this:

D u hav tme 2 hav S tn?

Note: S is capital, inferring the use of the abbreviation for “sex” and not “snapchat,” which is represented by a lowercase “s.”

This essay is dedicated to Joel Stein, slanderer of the selfie, denature-er of the multitask, and green monster of envy of how successful we’re going to be when we create the flying cars that you watched in The Jetsons–not that I, or any other millennial, even really has the capability to comprehend what a Saturday morning cartoon is. Just because your last name is “Stein” does not mean that you have a free pass to target our generation and still be considered a mensch.