On Corny Life Advice, Courtesy of The Internet

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Earlier today, I was looking online for some FYD-inspiration. Instead, I ended up trolling the big thought-piece websites (Elite Daily, Thought Catalog, Jezebel, and the like) for a solid hour. After digesting the mass load of lists about what I should do in my 20’s, things I should tell my BFF like RN!!, who I should have sex with, and how I can learn to let go of an ex, I couldn’t help but take a step back and realize: we really do eat this shit up like candy. We read content (which, might I add, The FYD even contributes to) that is so empty yet so fulfilling. All right, maybe “empty” isn’t the right word. But it’s stuff we already know–it’s stuff we already feel. We love the internet because it puts into words what, often, we cannot.

My best friends and I are currently dispersed around the country. 50% of our communication is laced into the cutesy articles we Facebook message back and forth on a daily basis. Finding a new one that no one’s sent yet is like finding a puzzle piece or a love letter. These articles, posts, or whatever you’d like to call them, help us confirm and communicate what we’re feelin’. Guess what? Now, we don’t even have to hide behind our iPhone screens to send a passive-aggressive iMessage. We can just send a “20 things” list! If you’re feeling risqué, you can even send an open letter.

Though I can’t really imagine myself ever being passive-aggressive, I love this internet phenomenon almost as much as I love a good pair of overalls. If you don’t feel like joining the movement, I’ll sum up the best of the best for you. Here’s a round up of everything you really need to know about love, dating, sex, and being 20-something as told to you by millennials who write the stuff that always comes up on your Facebook newsfeed:

  1. Only your true best friend knows when you’re pooping, and how good, bad, or average it was.
  2. Loneliness makes us make some pretty bad decisions.
  3. Not every person you’re with has to be someone you want to be with forever.
  4. Sometimes, binge eating is necessary and ok. But when you binge, there is always an underlying reason for it, and that usually means something’s not ok.
  5. Everything happens for a reason.
  6. For some people, eating 4 slices of cake is something you should definitely do. For other people, it isn’t. Just do what makes you happy.
  7. Pay attention in class.
  8. We are born alone, and we die alone, so it’s ok to be alone sometimes. Actually, it’s really good.
  9. Finding “the one” only matters if you find him or her at the right time.
  10. It’s hard, but often necessary, to unlove someone.
  11. You know you’re really close with someone if you can sit in silence together.
  12. Nobody cares when you subtly complain about how little you ate.
  13. You don’t have to prove anything to anyone.
  14. You also really don’t have to wear so much makeup.
  15. When women are alone, they do not wear pants.
  16. When a friend asks you about her outfit, be honest.
  17. And even though the internet is throwing all of this advice at you, telling you how you should feel about being alive, remember that you have a gut (regardless of whether or not you ate the four pieces of cake) and first and foremost, you should always go with that.

Flavor of the Week: Being Stressed Out as F***

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Everyone loves to just walk around saying “Ugh, I’m literally so stressed out right now.” Stress is everywhere, embodied in every kvetching student, in every mother of three children, and in every girl who breathes. It is the symbol of our generation that thrives on espresso, that doesn’t really sleep at all, and that has to deal with the most competitive job market and higher education system in the world.

The worst thing about all of this isn’t even how suckish being stressed feels; it’s that everyone is stressed, so no one’s really stressed, and it’s become an acceptable and normal thing to constantly feel like you’re swimming in a kiddie pool with Tilikum (Tilikum, for those of you who are unaware, is the killer whale in the focus of my fav documentary, Blackfish).

Because I’ve been stressed out since I, as a wee newborn, witnessed my mother birth my placenta, I thought I could offer a few tips in dealing with stress.

Do: drink coffee. It’ll keep you going.

Don’t: talk to other people. Because you’re just going to take all of your stress out on them and then you’ll look like a bitch. Of course you probably are a bitch, but it’s best to hide that at all costs and whenever possible.

Also, don’t: talk to your boyfriend. He will inevitably piss you off.

Don’t: be around people who chew and/or breathe loudly. They will also piss you off. And distract you.

Do: yoga. Cliché, yes. But it’s a great way to kind-of work out and kind-of take a nap during shavasana.

Don’t: smoke a cigarette. No matter how cool you think they make you look, they just don’t. They also don’t actually make you less stressed. Post-boge, you still have an overwhelming amount of shit to do so it makes more sense to stop wasting time taking years off your life and instead just like, work!!!

Do, but also don’t: stress eat. Stress is great for binge eaters. If you say you’re stressed while eating a piece of cheesecake at 3pm (ya know, just an afternoon snack!) or while eating an alfredo pasta, pepperoni pizza, and a giant snickerdoodle cookie at 1am (a.k.a. me last Tuesday night #sorrynotsorry), then everyone is like “Oh, ok, you’re off the hook for not trying to mimic Kendall Jenner’s chopstick-like frame at this moment in time.” However, stressing can be a great way to be like “Ahhh my tummy is in such knots! I cannot seem to stomach a thing!” and shed a few pounds.

Do: go to bed early, and do something for yourself before you go to bed. I’m not saying go to sleep at 10pm, but don’t go to sleep at 2am. I usually work until 10:30ish, then whip off my bra immediately (remember, ladies: no bra, no problem), and then get in bed to watch an episode of Girls. Glass of wine, optional.

Though stress is the most chronic illness of ever, it is something that we can combat together. One last tip: cry. Cry a lot. But stay positive! You will get through this! (Ha. Ha. Ha.)


Flavor of the Week: The Real Biggest Losers

The Biggest Loser

I’ve never watched a full episode of The Biggest Loser. I only have one friend who’s really into it (though I don’t believe she even watched this season), and the only other person I know who liked it was my grandma (who is now deceased). Regardless, it seems like a pretty inspirational show. People change their lives for the better, have happily ever afters, etc. etc. etc. The concept is really great. But in a society where we teeter back and forth between being too thin and too fat, does The Biggest Loser prompt people to feel like… big losers?

Rachel Frederickson was just crowned this season’s winner, dropping from 260 to 105 pounds. Before I read the first of many articles I would eventually read about her, I saw her “after” photo. She looked good–toned, fit, thin. I assumed she was in her early-mid 30s. It turns out that Rachel’s only 24. That was the first unsettling fact to me.

Then, I learned that she now weighs only 105 pounds. Then, I learned that Rachel is 5’4”. I’m 5’4”. I’m not nearly 105 pounds. Yes, bodies come in every shape and size, and weight is just a number. Body fat is proportioned differently depending on the person, and no one should feel the need to conform to a number on an outdated BMI index. But there is an undeniable fact that everyone is aware of, and it is that being 105 pounds and 5’4” usually means you’re too thin.

Obviously, controversy sparked from every corner of the body-centric world. Two very valid arguments arise: the first, that The Biggest Loser is a weight loss show and Rachel accomplished (very well) exactly what she went on the show to do. This side argues Rachel shouldn’t be penalized and she didn’t take things too far. The second argument pleads the opposite: that Rachel clearly has a problem; one drilled into her head by a show that monitors contestants as if it was the NSA for fat people.

Those of you who blame The Biggest Loser for turning an obese young woman into a petite someone who other women will envy–you are wrong. You cannot blame a television production based on helping unhealthy people lead healthy lifestyles for a contestant’s weight loss. At the same time, you can’t say that Rachel’s weight loss is okay just because you “wouldn’t call her skeletal,” as Betches Love This likes to put it. “Have you ever seen an actual anorexic person or like, a Holocaust survivor?” The “Betches” continue, “That is fucking skeletal.” They also say that Rachel “is the size of a mother of three who spends a lot of time at Soul Cycle or like, Kate Middleton,” and therefore we shouldn’t be concerned.

No, no, no, no, no. We can be funny all we want–we can make fun of ourselves, of the pettiness of young women, of the ridiculous obsessions we have with things like social media and men, but we cannot make jokes about body image. Just because someone doesn’t “look” like they have an eating disorder–like they aren’t “skeletal”–doesn’t mean they aren’t suffering mentally.

Last week, I called my mom in hysterics because I felt comparable to a very large whale. Moms are used to the complaints of their daughters, many of whom are perfectly fine and healthy but suffer from a paranoia and awareness of the body that is unnecessarily overwhelming. My mom, however, could sense the extreme level of shittiness I was feeling. When I told her that it pained me to look in the mirror and to have more than one sit-down meal a day–that the thought of giving in to a plateful of food rather than the Chobani and then the apple and then the Fiber One bar snacking regimen I had perfected to a tee–she knew I was falling into a trap.

My mom asked me why I hadn’t spoken to anyone about this–my friends, a therapist, etc. I told her something I consider to be one of the most wretched mindsets of our image-infatuated generation: I just didn’t look like I had a problem. I’m not “thin,” I’m curvy with a butt and boobs and legs, and I’m pretty sure I’ve been like that since the fourth grade. What are the odds that someone takes me seriously when I walk up to her and tell her I’m having trouble eating? You can claim someone would listen to me, and if it was a real problem, someone would be able to tell. But unfortunately, I can fill you in from experience–that isn’t the case. It seems like you can’t have a problem unless you look like you do.

Okay, so if I lose 30 pounds, will you believe me then?

Luckily, I swung out of my funk and adjusted back to a normal, healthy routine. But there are thousands upon thousands of girls that won’t. Did Rachel Frederickson’s drastic weight loss pose a bad influence on self-conscious teens? I didn’t watch The Biggest Loser, but I’m assuming they only showed her losing weight healthily. They probably didn’t showcase her anorexia, or her bulimia, or any other eating disorder she might have. As I said before, her size doesn’t have to correlate to her mental state, and her mental state doesn’t have to correlate to her size.

In truth, the people who tend to be sensitive to the appearances of people in the media will be affected by Rachel’s weight loss just as they would the body of any other celebrity. The less sensitive people won’t. The job of The Biggest Loser is to help its contestants become healthier. The job of me–and of every other young lady, and even the job of every young man–is to make sure that I am healthy, that my friends are healthy, and that my family is healthy. Rachel’s weight loss was startling to me, too. But can we please get over the battle of too thin versus thin enough and realize the bigger picture?

Please?

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Flavor of the Week: Jennifer Lawrence

This year, Jennifer Lawrence became the girl that everyone loved. Guys want to get with her, girls want to be her. And if they aren’t her, then they want to be her best friend. Like me, she gives off the “I don’t give a shit what people say or think” attitude, except unlike me, people like her because of it. Maybe if I was Katniss Everdeen I’d be more liked by people who do archery and appreciate a girl with a big mouth. With the Golden Globes around the corner, I thought the time had come for me to join the JLaw bandwagon. After all, her year wouldn’t be that accomplished without a shoutout from The FYD.

Whenever I try to picture Jennifer Lawrence in my mind, I, for some odd reason, can only think of the Disney Channel star Debby Ryan (from “Suite Life on Deck” and “Jessie”) who is cute–def not as hot as JLaw though–and actually smiles for pics. Whenever this happens I get so frustrated that I google “Jennifer Lawrence” on my iPhone so that I can remember her face and let a wave of relief wash over me. I’ve seen every movie JLaw has been in (including Like Crazy, one of my fav movies of all time) and I seem to google her face ten times a day yet it still refuses to ingrain itself in my mind. I think that really says something.

It’s underrated how she got her start in The Hunger Games. I mean, she had a small career beforehand, but you didn’t really know her until you knew Katniss. The Hunger Games reminds me of my tomboy literary phase in sixth grade. I never went through a tomboy phase in terms of how I dressed, but I read “boy books” for a while. How can just a literary work of tomboy-ness bring out someone regarded as one of the most glamorous people in the world?

I do love JLaw, however. I think that she is very real and has intentions of being the role model that wasn’t out there before. I love that she fell on her way to receive her Oscar and I love that she fell because she was thinking about cake. I also love how genius it was of her to finally tell the media that she fell because she was thinking about cake so strategically right before Golden Globes, as if to say, “give me the Golden Globe for my role in American Hustle and I promise I will do something that will further prove how much of a real, down-to-earth food-lover I am!” Her fall also means that when I inevitably fall on the way to get my Oscar one day I won’t be the first one to do it. The experience will be much less scarring.

As much as I love her, I also think she’s slightly overrated. Some people say they think she’s overrated in terms of her looks, which I totally disagree with. The people that say that are just jealous. I think she’s overrated in terms of how special she is, so to speak. We decided she was amazing because of how vivid she seems through the screen of a MacBook or captured in a magazine photograph. We love her because she’s young, and she’s fresh. I never would have picked her acting skills out of a crowd. Don’t get me wrong, she mastered Katniss, but… well… it’s Katniss.

The first time I saw Silver Linings Playbook, I thought that someone had secretly done an autobiography of my life without my knowledge or approval. JLaw’s diner-freakout scene could easily have been directly taken from any time between November and April of my senior year of high school. People thought her acting in that movie, and in that scene in particular, was crazy. For me it was just like a #tbt or whatever.

Recently, I read a really interesting article about JLaw and all of the things she says about body image–how no one can ever make her diet, she loves a burger and fries, etc. The article, which I believe was on HuffPost, said that the only reason we commend JLaw for being so “real” about her secretly naughty eating habits and her curves is because she manages to portray this persona while still looking thin, beautiful, and healthy all of the time. If someone who needed to lose weight made such a statement about loving a cheeseburger almost every time she opened her mouth, we would probably be disgusted. We would think that she’s being careless and sloppy and needs to go on a diet. But when JLaw does it, we clap for her because she does it and still looks like she doesn’t. This is something I’ve thought about for a long time, but never felt resonated with enough people that I could actually say it and believe it was true. But it totally is.

So, where does that leave us with JLaw? Still love her. Still think she’ll win a shitload of awards for everything she’s done. Still think she’ll continue to talk about food like it’s nobody’s business. But also still think she should make us think about what’s really real and what isn’t.


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: Eating Stuff Out Of The Jar

I decided to get creative. Instead of blurring out the photo, I “anonymified” it. As I sit at my computer screen, hysterically laughing at this devious creation (thank you photo editing apps), I can’t help but recall when this photo was taken: four days before I broke up with my boyfriend. We went into the city for a night, and all I kept saying was that I wanted to buy a pint of Chocolate Fudge Brownie Ben & Jerry’s and eat out of it with a spoon. Needless to say, we bought the pint at 2 a.m., shared a sparse amount (whatever I was willing to give up) with some friends, and finished the entire thing. Therefore, I can scientifically prove to you that eating stuff out of the jar is a comfort, easing some of the most difficult curveballs life throws our way.

My first instinct was to write about Nutella. But honestly, what am I going to tell you about Nutella that you don’t already know? Nutella and the young woman are inseparable. We rely on Nutella like we rely on tampons. To put it bluntly, they just soak everything up.

If you’re happy, you might celebrate with a thing of Nutella. If you’re high as hell sad, you’ll head right for the Nutella. But in reality, it isn’t the hazelnut that gives you a sense of satisfaction. It’s eating shit right out of the jar that does.

For being obsessed with being skinny, we seem to let all f**** go when a jar of something yummy comes our way. Ben & Jerry’s just isn’t the same in a cup or a cone or a bowl. It’s only great out of the tub. Bethenny Frankel says that “naturally thin” people never eat stuff out of the jar. You end up eating without thinking, eating too much, and getting fat, and dying alone. Or, god forbid, you might decrease the size of your thigh gap. We all know that a decreased thigh gap is only good for catching crumbs of food as they fall on the way to your mouth. So not worth it.

In honor of the food coma that Christmas instills in all people–if you aren’t eating a ham right now, then you’re definitely going ham on kosher Chinese food–it’s important to come to terms with the fact that we love eating shit out of the jar. I spend most of my weeknights on the floor on my room sticking my fingers in a jar of Justin’s almond butter with my best friend. We love getting dirty with some Nutella, ice cream, almond butter, and obviously peanut butter (the indulgent version of almond butter). Eating out of the jar, for most girls with ridiculous body image issues, is the closest you’ll ever get to going skydiving or something like that. Risky as hell. Living life on the edge. Not counting calories for a slim (or not so slim) second.

On a day like today when I’m having serious trouble coping with my own #fatgirlproblems, I’m going to give you shitty advice: eat out of the jar. But keeping “thin” in mind, maybe only have a few bites. Also, remember that committing to not eating out of the jar is, by association, committing to not taking swigs out of the bottle. Now that is a bond I’m not sure any of us are ready to break.


Flavor of the Week: Being Sick

Being sick right now is like rolling deep at E-Zoo. Everyone’s doing it.

My sickness started the first night of Halloweek. For the first time in my life, I completely lost my voice. Usually when people lose their voices, I assume they’re faking it to try and sound “hot.” Apparently guys like it when our voice resembles theirs via 2008. So the second I hear someone complain about a lost voice (which they probably do just to show off their faux-rasp), I never hesitate to ask, “Have you tried coughing to fix that?” or, “You could probs just cough and that’ll go right away!” It’s really rude, I know, but being sick is much chicer than faking sick. Faking sick is too much effort. It’s better to just not be sick at all.

There are pros and cons to being sick. When I went home from school for fall break, I went on a psycho eating binge that wasn’t like “ugh, I had fro-yo thrice in one day” but was scary and revealed a lot about the unconscious association I have between food and home. Before I get all I-went-through-seven-years-of-therapy on you, I’ll get to the point–I literally ate myself into sickness. You don’t wanna know the gory details, but I was sick. Like, sick. The con this time around was that I almost shit my pants at a petting zoo (long story). The pro was that I lost two pounds when I should have gained five. Yay.

Mono is a sickness with tons of pros i.e. you don’t have to get out of bed for months and have an excuse as to why you physically are incapable of working out. If you have mono, everyone knows you get guys. It’s like a less slutty and more desirable form of HPV. One of my best friends (who is prominently featured on The FYD for her Big 10 prof pic) says that everyone at Michigan has mono right now. A.K.A., everyone at Michigan is sexually active right now but using protection (if they didn’t, they would have something else). This is so great to hear.

For me, being sick is an excuse not to go out. At the same time, I look like I’m such a partier that my body is degenerating. Last Saturday, I didn’t go out because I had a cold that was probably a hybrid strain of the Bubonic plague and Yellow Fever. Instead, I lied in bed with cranberry almond trail mix and fro-yo while two of my best friends sat on my carpet and told me funny stories about things like their IBS kicking in during a morning-after (another illness FTW).

Being sick really isn’t so bad after all. Honestly, if you’re gonna be popping Advil on the daily, you might as well be sick when you do. It’s good karma.

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On Your Body Being A Temple

After a couple of months of neglecting the topic of bodies and a long week of binge-eating my birthday candy, I decided it was time again to have a little chat about our skin and bones.

A couple of weeks ago, I was talking to my guy friend about “The Freshman 15,” which, at Brown, seems to be more like “The Freshman Negative 15.” Not that people I know are necessarily losing weight, but there’s a definite fear of gaining it. We’re so aware of the possibility to gain that we can’t stop thinking about trying to keep it off. This, of course, is probably more unhealthy than the 2a.m. pizza I’m yet to have thus far.

He said, “I’ve been eating really well since I’ve been here. I work out every day, I watch what I eat… I’m all about that whole ‘My body is a temple’ thing. You know?”

Why, yes, I did know. “My body is a temple” is one of my personal favorite phrases. It sounds so nice, in theory of course, to treat your body with so much respect–to only give it beautiful and natural things like grilled chicken and chopped salad and lots and lots of Fiji water. That mantra reminds me of gentle yoga and intense SoulCycle in a candlelit room. I love saying “My body is a temple” because it sounds so pretty on the outside. And, in reality, we really should become conducive to that lifestyle. So when my friend told me that his body was a temple, what was my response?

Obviously, “Oh my God, I’m the same way!”

Do I feel like my body should be a temple? Probably. Do I always treat it like it’s a temple? Debatable. Does my body look like a temple? HA. Let’s be real… I love fro-yo too much to avoid chemical food products, and we all know it.

When guys tell you in a casual conversation that they are true believers that their bodies are temples, it says a lot about them. Generally, I jump to one of two conclusions:

1. You’re an asshole, or

2. You’re really effing earthy

And that about sums it all up. But if you’re good looking and your body not only is a temple in your minds eye, but it’s clear to see that you treat it like one, you’ll have nice Jewish girls lined up for miles to take a turn davening in your sanctuary. Screw the pews… they’ll be down to get all up in your bimah.

Guys that are earthy love treating their bodies as temples. That’s why the smoke the green stuff–because it’s “organic” and au naturale. They also love being skinny, because if you aren’t lanky and try to convince people that you’re earthy, they’re just not going to believe you. It’s a part of the look.

If you’re an asshole, you just tell girls that you like treating your body as a temple because you… (wait for it… wait for it…)

1. “…Just feel better, like all around, you know?”

2. “…Have more energy”

3. “…Like to wake up in the morning, look in the mirror, and like what I see.” (I swear on my life I’ve literally heard this one before)

4. “…Gotta compensate for the beer somehow”

5. “…Deserve to look good”

etc., etc., etc.

I have a very vivid memory of reading Siddhartha in my ninth grade English class. We learned about how he would only eat very little, as little as needed, as not to be selfish or indulgent. I’ve also learned that when on a tight budget I’d rather spend my money on things other than food (things meaning the necessary waxes, fro-yo runs, and shoes) that I’ll just eat and then complain about eating for the next five days until my temporary bloat/love handles fade and I start to be able to feel my hip bones again. All of these things, when put together, paint an idealistic picture of my body being a temple. The phrase just sounds so nice, the image it engrains in your mind is so zen, but no matter how long I rant upon it, I don’t know if it will ever be possible.

The next weekend, the guy who told me that his body was a temple went home drunk from a party and spent a good hour vomiting into a trash can. Doesn’t look so sacred to me.

 


Flavor of the Week: Chopped Salad

Ew, who eats bread anymore?

If I wanted to, I could make this post short and sweet: If you haven’t eaten chopped salad, then you haven’t lived. If you haven’t custom-made your own chopped salad, then you are not alive at all. And if you understand why chopped salad is about as trendy as Kim Kardashian’s breast milk is right now, then you are a fricking genius.

But of course, I can’t complain in just these three short sentences. So let me spell it out for you:

I adore chopped salad. It served the role of “Gay Best Friend” to me. But what I cease to comprehend is exactly why chopped salad has become such a “thing.” Salad and it’s ability to be chopped has been around since… like… ever. Yet, girls and women alike act as if suddenly someone discovered that indeed, there is a vegetable called lettuce and, holy shit, we are #blessed enough to be able to chop it into tiny pieces with a pizza slicer?????!!!!

I mean, when you put it like that… am I wrong? Does this not seem absolutely ridiculous?

#YesWeCan #DreamActBroughtToYouByChoppedSaladPlaces

Women always have and always will love to eat salad–this is not a “new” thing. So why does it seem like it? And why is salad seemingly better when it’s chopped? It’s almost as if we keep getting our baby food diet mixed up with our only-eat-things-that-are-96%-water diet. Rookie move. Get a grip, people.

Salad used to only exist as a sad, lifeless, and stationary being. It was left out on “salad bars” in the centre (yes, centre) of restaurants where it was totally exposed to the germy air and any waft of passed gas that sauntered in from the bathroom around the corner. Now, salad is respected. We gave salad back its rights like it’s 1965, baby. It is kept in a refrigerated, enclosed environment behind a counter where only trained professionals have access to its leafy loveliness.

Decades ago, our country was scattered with luncheonettes where hardworking men would get a 99-cent sandwich and fries. Today, luncheonettes have been replaced with “Creative Salad Companies,” feeding the brains of the driven women and weight-conscious homosexual men who are taking the workforce by storm. It is likely that my dissertation will one day hover around the concept of, oh, I don’t know, something along the lines of “The Rise Of Chopped Salad As A Lunch And/Or Dinner Food Is Definitely Like 100% Linked To The Fact That Women Are Better Respected In Society And Are Taking Over The World In A Great Way.” It’s just a working thought, you know?


On Plus Sized Modeling

The topic of plus sized modeling does not come up as often in conversation amongst my friends nearly as much as I read about it, hear about it, and see it on the news. In fact, the topic never comes up at all. We don’t even talk about modeling much except for those few terrible, terrible weeks before and after the annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, which isn’t a real fashion show (Coco Chanel is turning in her grave) and is more of a telecasted porno. The only difference between that and an X-rated flick is that teenage girls become anorexic rather than nauseas.

Glorified events like the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show bring Regina George-style attention to these models. Some of it’s negative, but more of it’s positive. The negative attention is along the likes of “they’re too skinny,” “they need to eat,” and “someone please give this girl some non non-fat fro-yo.” When stick-thin models are put to shame, the media begins to bow down to plus-sized models like they’re big because they ate a little piece of God while they were still in the womb. I’ve read countless online articles from major and reliable news sources that solely focus on praising size 12 models for being beautiful and doing their thing regardless of their size. Plus sized models are applauded for representing the average woman.

As someone who has been pretty average her whole life–I did away with any shot of having a Victoria’s Secret body by the first grade–I have no right to look down upon plus sized models. While it is important to stay healthy and fit, most runway models look seriously malnourished. I appreciate their dedication to things like kale and hunger strikes but I also think that it makes me feel bad about the way that I look.

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My 6th birthday party. Me = pregnant Kim Kardashian, Athletic Best Friend = Amanda Bynes (after she moved to NYC and decided to become 100 lbs., duh).

I don’t know for sure how I feel about plus sized modeling versus skeleton modeling (seeing as either example will never in a million years indicate how certain clothing will actually look on my body). However, as always, I have a lot to say.

To, primarily, address the elephant in the room (no pun intended, but I’ll go with it), does plus sized modeling encourage an unhealthy lifestyle? Does it give out the message that it is “OK” to look like that? I don’t know the answer. I obviously am just asking rhetorical questions to add depth to the essay. But if I did know the answer, I would say it. I wish I did.

How rude would it be if we totally cut out plus sized modeling from the industry? It’s comparable to stopping the sale of plus sized clothing–everyone has a right to buy clothing their size (assuming there are some people that you just never want to see naked) so then everyone should have the right to see someone their size wearing clothing their size. Under that logic, I am a proponent of the plus.

The most interesting thing about this entire debate to me is this: is it bad that I’m even questioning this topic to begin with? Am I living proof of our warped society for questioning the legitimacy of plus sized models? Our country is at war. Half of the people are complaining about the need to make girls feel empowered about who they are, as they are, and the other half is trying to battle a growing childhood obesity problem one carb-cutting lunch law at a time.

But then again, I could have it all backwards. Is it possible?–could we all be so obsessed with curing modern America from its romance with thigh gaps that the passion for a little chunk here and there is too fervent? It’s like going along with a movement not because you’re so invested in what the movement believes, but because you’re so against whatever the opponent has to say. Some feminists out there decided to get as far away from supporting super-thin models as possible. So, now, they support super-fat ones. Why? Not because they like the larger models, but because they dislike the thinner ones.

Well, after an hour of writing and a whole adolescence of thinking, I’m going to make my own movement. It’s called The I-wish-no-one-cared-about-what-anyone-else-thought Movement. I wish I could say that maybe one day, that will actually exist. I wish that I knew what we were supposed to look like. But for now, it looks like we’re only moving further and further in the opposite direction–the direction in which, ironically, the fight for staying thin and the fight for being anti-thin both lie.


Flavor of the Week: Kale

Sometimes, people are so desperate for trendiness that they’ll turn something as mundane as a vegetable and make it a “thing.” Well, my friends, this is what happened to kale. Kale used to be a nobody, sitting lonely on gourmet supermarket shelves, only purchased by the small Chinese grandfather who knew the magical powers of this leafy green from his ancestors and his small dragon friend/spirit guardian, Mushu.

Mushu is psyched about kale.

Once, someone who is either a really ano Jewish girl or the Hollywood trainer Harley Pasternak (who bears no relation to me whatsoever) discovered kale from the rich soil of our earth. And, upon realizing its great qualities–hello, negative calories–turned kale into a staple of the skinny. Not only is kale both an edible and a drinkable, shout out to green juice, but it is also a way of life.

I decided to google “quotes about kale” to see if I could find something spunky to include. Instead of finding a few interesting quotes, I found a lot of psychos that are literally obsessed with kale. Like, I cannot even. Psychos.

I stumbled upon this charm: a blog called “365 Days of Kale: Where Kale is More Than Decoration on My Plate!” My first reaction? What the literal…

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This is my favorite post on 365 because it contains a photo of Ryan Gosling holding a head of kale.

Obviously, this woman got her kale confused with her kush.

During my research, I found this in breaking news on ecorazzi.com: “The Green Quote: Vegan Singer Alanis Morissette Is Obsessed With Kale.” Really? No effin way?!?!?! Send that shiz to CNN stat. I’m sure you’re dying to find out what Alanis Morissette has to say about kale–“It’s like rain on your wedding day.” JK LOLZ, kale is ironic, but more in the trendy way than in the 90’s pop way (you will only understand this if you know Alanis Morrisette’s hits like any good Canadian lesbian would). But she actually did say this: “Kale is my best friend.” Cute.

Kale is like one of those things that people love to talk about because they want everyone to know how obsessed they are with kale. Once, I was with someone who wasn’t particularly in good shape and she was eating steamed kale. She could not stop gushing to be about how obsessed she was with it. It’s like great, good for you, you love kale. But I’m pretty sure that she thought talking about something like kale so much would make her lose weight, and it really didn’t.

I would not be surprised if somewhere in a white loft office space in LA a bunch of really skinny beautiful people who go to Soul Cycle a lot are conjuring up kale fro-yo. Just wait. Seriously.