As I understand it, Top Girl is basically one of those games where you get to buy outfits and go to clubs. I call this real life, because I'm 24, but in tween-land, Top Girl is everything they think they're missing out on. Out of curiosity and the incredible, incurable boredom that comes with a racing-heavy long weekend, I decided to download Top Girl and play it for myself.
Stage 1: Customising My Top Girl.
I decide to go for a look I've wanted to try since Pretty In Pink but know in my heart I'd never pull off -- the Molly Ringwald. I have the enviable long, blonde hair our Western culture so admires, but as we've learned from every movie ever, what we've been gifted is never enough for us. For me, Molly's look is too cool for school. Even 80s James Spader thought so, and he knew a thing or two about life.
Right off the bat, I find that my Molly avatar is...lacking. The thing is, Molly Ringwald had a certain quirkiness to her. As Samantha Baker, it made her weird; as Claire Standish, popular. But it was always there. My Molly looks generic, and I already hate her. This isn't the beginning for which I'd hoped, but maybe when my Molly and I have adventures together, that's when we'll really connect. Also, I can't really make her hair red. There's a 'copper' option, but it's closer to brown. Apparently the Top Girl can never be a ginger.
Stage 2: Wardrobe.
Pictured: Work Hot.
Stage 3: Work.
Turns out I have no choice in profession. I'm a model. And not a very good one at that. I don't even get to take any photos; I just press a 'DO JOB' button and get coins. Not even Top Girl Cash. I get paid in loose change. It'd be nice to say that at least I can feed the meter on my way out, but I'm not sure I live in a world where they let women drive.
Stage 4: Social Life.
Don't fret, self-esteem, I'm hot. It's just that I'm Work Hot. I need to be Club Hot. I take my corporate-chic little butt home to change into a (frankly OTT) pink ball gown which somehow constitutes Club Hot, and head to the bar to meet my potential new boyfriend. I get three people to choose from, but before I can even click on them, I noticed that the third man has a little quirk. Every three and a half seconds, without fail, a little speech bubble comes up and he tells me, "You are like a pizza -- every slice is perfect." What?
Shockingly, the pizza line does not sway me, and I meet the rest of the potential suitors. Bachelor number one is Justin, a horse trainer with a manliness score of 28. Out of what, 100? Seems a little low. Bachelor number 2 Brian fares no better -- he's shoe salesman with a manliness score of 24. Pfft, you have zero chance, Bri-Bri. But it's bachelor number 3 who takes out the prize. Quinton is -- you freakin' guessed it -- a pizza delivery boy! No wonder he's so into my slices! He somehow has a manliness score of 28, despite being a redheaded pizza boy with a very specific kind of Tourette's. You better believe I'm going to choose the hell out of Quinton.
Uh-oh. Something terrible's just happened. I exited the game before I could flirt with Quinton (dinnertime waits for no man, not even Quinton) and when I came back, there was an entirely different set of guys at the club for me to flirt with! Remarkably, Quinton the only one who remains the same, but when I click on him, I'm horrified.
Not only is Quinton's name now Clinton, but he's a shoplifter! It's somehow a step down from pizza boy! I choose him anyway, thinking I might be able to get some off-the-back-of-a-truck gifts from him. I click on the 'flirt' button and am annoyed to discover that I have to buy him a drink. I mean...I guess it's pretty progressive that the woman's shouting the guy, but fuck that. I buy Clinton a beer regardless, 'cause it's the cheapest thing on the menu, and bam! Just like that, Clinton's my BF.
I do like the juxtaposition of the words MY BOYFRIEND with DATED: 0 MINUTES. I don't really want to do any of those button-y things with him yet, so I leave the club. Clinton comes with me and tells me, "You're prettier than all the girls combined on the gossip magazines." That you steal from the supermarket, Clinton? I'm starting to think that Clinton (and subsequently Quinton) aren't from an English-speaking country.
Since Clinton being my boyfriend gives me energy refills, I decide to go do some more modelling. Oh hey, I just realised -- I'm not even a model! I'm an assistant, but as soon as I'm hot enough, I can become a Booth Babe, whatever that is. Don't they work for porn sites? Is that what I'm thinking of here?
To the mall! I buy a new work outfit, and also another club dress, because you never know when I might have to break up with Clinton. He's already getting on my nerves with his incessant chatter, and to make matters worse, he hasn't even stolen anything for me yet! Quinton was way more committed to his character trait. I do earn a free Top Girl Cash wad just for buying the club dress, so good for me.
Next I get a 'quest' from the talking notepad at the bottom of the screen.
Booyah! Stolen goods, here we come. I reluctantly kiss Clinton and am immediately accosted with this image.
I'll say we've taken our relationship to the next level! I agreed to a kiss, Clinton, so where the hell's my shirt? (I do like the necklace, though.) For some reason, I'm banned from kissing Clinton again for ninety minutes, which I guess will give him enough time to go steal me something else as a thank-you for when I inevitably round the next base. And once that's done, I have a new quest: to keep my boyfriend for at least 3 hours. Wow, Top Girl. That's commitment. I almost give up after Clinton calls me 'doll face,' but then he completely redeems himself with the next line:
That's so adorably desperate, it actually makes me want to spend more time with him. Clinton, you don't even realise how uncool a thing that is to say! I decide to chat with him, and I'm given three topics of conversation: smart, funny and sexy. I go for 'sexy,' because he's deserved it. The following conversation ensues:
I get the feeling that Clinton and I cry after sex. We just sit there and weep in each other's arms. I thought I was cooler than this. I can seriously do no wrong with Clinton, so I decide to take the boy on a date, changing into my flat shoes first, because as if Clinton's not a dine-and-dasher. My date outfit is so cute!
Oh, doggone it. Not only do I have to pay for dinner, but I also have to look Club Hot. Since Clinton's happiness meter is full, I decide that the date can wait. The thing is, though, there's not a whole lot else to do in Top Girl World. My boyfriend's apparently not allowed into the club anymore, because when I go there, I just get three more boys wanting to be my boyfriend.
Hilariously, two of them are doing exactly the same moves at the same time. I like to think they choreographed this at home. The dude in the middle keeps saying, "CLICK CLICK," in those block letters, so he's either a photographer or a robot.
Eh. I was hoping for robot. I go to the lounge and instead have my choice of a TV show host, a VIP Club host, and, no joke, a moocher. As much as I want to be treated like a celebrity by the VIP host with the Jewfro, I decide to add to my collection of deadbeats and flirt with Nicholas the Moocher. Truth be told, I'm pretty happy with my current boyfriend, but I really just want to see what dear old Clinton does if I flirt with another man. Will he fight for me?
Oh my God! How embarrassing! I did try to buy the guy a cheap beer in my butt-ugly outfit; it's no wonder he's rejected me! I go back outside, where Clinton greets me with the absolute perfect thing he could possibly say at that moment: "You make your nice clothes look even better." Thank you Clinton! My clothes are nice and I look good in them. Suck on that, Nicholas, you stupid moocher. Then he tells me I'm a strong, confident woman, and dear God, I think I'm starting to like this Clinton.
Since I've been pretty terrible to Clinton, I decide to buy the dude a present -- his very own cordless drill. But dilemma -- the Drill costs 19 Top Girl Cash wads! I only have 18. Do I spend virtually all my incredibly-hard-to-earn wads on a freakin' drill, even though me going into a club and unsuccessfully flirting with a moocher didn't even put a dent in his happiness bar and I really don't have to?
Nope. Not going to do it. I do buy him a videogame for 6 Top Girl Cash wads, though, so I'm not the worst girlfriend ever. His love meter apparently increases after that, even though it was at 100% already. Never mind. I did it for actual love, not meter love.
Clinton rewards my gift-giving by telling me, "I don't wanna work today." You're a frickin' shoplifter, Clinton! That's your actual job, you weirdo! In fact, there are a lot of things Clinton say that are more than a little weird.
On the top right-hand corner of my screen is a countdown clock. I've never noticed it before, but now that I have, it's all I can look at. What is it counting down? The numbers aren't red, so I know it's not a bomb. I've watched enough TV to know how bombs work -- on a bomb, the numbers are always red. So what is this damn clock? I decide to find out. I play chicken with it. I stand on the street, posing for absolutely no reason while my stupid boyfriend spouts phrases I swear are a joke.
After standing around for what seemed like forever, the game SHUT DOWN MY PHONE. Seriously. The screen did a weird analogue-TV-snowy thing, went blank. and then my phone restarted as though rejecting this putrid piece of awful. I get that hint, phone. I get it.
So what have we learned? I've learned that a game for tweens can absolutely shatter a grown woman's confidence. Seriously. A dude in a bar tells me that I'm too ugly for him, and I'm poor, so what's the first thing I do? I run to my boyfriend for validation...AND IT WORKS. I had zero interest in Clinton before I was brutally rebuffed, but the second he greets me with a well-timed compliment about how my cute clothes look cute on my cute body, I suddenly love the stupid fucker so much that I almost buy him a power drill.
Epilogue: It's around about this time that I start to feel ill. I don't want to say specifically that playing Top Girl for a single day gave me the flu, but YES. It most certainly did. I don't play again until two weeks later, when I realised that something awful's happened. Clinton is unhappy. He will only be my boyfriend if I buy him a gift -- WORTH 40 FREAKING TOP GIRL CASH WADS. This game is ransoming my fake relationship right now. I can't keep Clinton unless I literally pay them literal money. From my real-life bank account. FUCK YOU TOP GIRL. FUCK YOU SO DAMN HARD. Sincle Clinton's and my blossoming romance was the only real drawcard to this ridiculous game, I'm officially out for good.
...unless Nicholas calls, of course.
This is, unfortunately, a true story. It happened to me two night ago during a seemingly uneventful house party I went to. I literally became trapped in a makeshift broom closet while two people I don't know had a screaming match in the bedroom on the other side of the closet door.
Basically, what happened is this: my dear friend Cameron had a party on Friday night at his house, which is being renovated. They're adding an entire second storey, but it's almost finished, so I guess he figured it wasn't a matter of public safety. At one point, my curiosity got the better of me and I wandered upstairs to check out the new addition. About three seconds after I'd snuck into the bedroom, two very loud people started yelling their heads off outside the door. The second I realised they were coming into the bedroom to have it out, I jumped into the tiny-ass closet so as not to disturb them. I have no idea where that logic came from, but okay. And so began my harrowing adventure in the closet which, unfortunately, didn't end in me finding Narnia.
Wha follows was originally meant to be a series of Tweets that captured my experience in the broom closet and informed the masses, but alas, no 3G coverage. Instead I saved them as text messages in the hopes that they would explain the situation when someone eventually recovered my body. Here they are today, completely unedited (except where stated) and in their original condition. Learn from my mistakes, people.
This closet is tiny. Like, TINY. Me + broom and dustpan = too many people.
Lady Yeller has an incredibly irritating voice. I'm pretty sure she was the chick I was talking to before who tried to convince me that Matthew Broderick was in Wall Street.
Man Yeller's name is Mark. No word on Lady Yeller's real name.
Maybe Mark doesn't know her real name. Maybe that's what they're fighting about.
Why hasn't anybody come looking for me? I've been here for like half an hour. Where do they think I am?
My knees are starting to hurt from sitting like this. Want to move, but am scared of making noise.
They've gone really quiet now. Still arguing I think, no longer yelling.
Can no longer call them Yelling Man and Yelling Lady if they're no longer yelling. His name is Mark, but what's hers?
I'm gonna call her Greta, as in "I reGRETA getting into this fucking cupboard.' See, I'm trapped, but I can still be witty.
I wish the delete button wasn't so close to the enter button on this thing. I keep erasing my damn words.
This is sorta like that epiosde in friends where Ross and Rachel fight and they all hide in the bedroom eating leg wax. I have no leg wax, and no Chandler.
Oh, fuck. I have to pee. Fuck, fuck, fuck.
Why is there a broom closet in here anyway? It's supposed to be a bedroom. This is going to bug me.
The house is being renovated, so I guess it's a temporary thing. The only thing in the bedroom is a bed, so it must all be new.
I miss Greta and Mark's yelling. At least I could hear the yelling over the music downstairs. All I hear now is mumbling and my inner voice begging me to find a toilet.
People are starting to notice I'm missing now. Someone just called me, only I didn't answer because I FUCKING CAN'T!
I've shifted my foot under my vag to stop the sensation of needing to pee. It's working.
It's not working. Why did I drink all that wine? Really wasn't necessary; I'm not on fucking Cougar Town.
Ha! No freedom, but I can still come up with witty pop-culture references.
Segue: Marie (edit: a friend of mine) told me the other day that I'm weird for punctuating my messages correctly. I sent her a text containing a semicolon that did not denote 'winky eyes.' I told her I'm a journalist in training.
Who am I talking to? My phone? Is this the crazy setting in?
Just had the brilliant idea to Facebook my predicament in the hopes that one of my friends will be antisocial enough ot be on Facebook in the middle of the party. Still no reception.
Argument update: Greta thinks Mark doesn't respect her. She keeps whining, "You don't respect me, Mark!"
His name might actually be Marcus.
Seriously, shut up. Get over your shit and go downstairs, you killjoy downers.
Not sure I want them to make up. What if they have make-up sex in here? Please, Mark and Greta. Do not have sex in here.
I am never going to speak to these two again. I will ignore them from the rest of the party. And THEIR LIVES.
Why won't my SOS texts sent?!! Why won't my loved ones' calls come through?!! Lost all reception, that's why.
It's so quiet now. Please don't me making out. Please do not let the making out lead to party fucking.
At least Tom Hanks had a volleyball to talk to on that Castaway island. I can't make a sound, not even for sporting goods. Not that I have any. Just a broom.
They're yelling again, but oh fuck oh my God they tore the handle off the door!!! I'm half convinced I'm dreaming this. This can't be real. What shoddy constructmanship. Holy hell, I need to pee.
Is constructmanship a word? It should be.
Yell for help, you morons! Stop yelling at each other!
I think this might be why Cam (edit: the guy whose house it is) told us not to go upstairs.
Pretty sure door handles only come off like this in cartoons. I didn't even realise stuff like this happens in real life.
How am I going to resolve this toilet situation? I cannot pee my pants at a party. I am at a loss.
Part of me wants to get out of this cupboard and just be done with it, but how do I explain this situation? As stupid as Mark and Greta are, I don't want them to think I can't handle socially-awkward situations.
I guess I can't, though. This experience has taught me that much about myself.
I've been in here exactly 90 mins. When (if?) I get out, I'm going to kill everything Mark and Greta hold dear.
They're yelling for help! Thank you, sweet Jesus! I hope someone downstairs can hear them over the music.
No one's coming. Maybe people think it's still argument yelling.
Mark just said he was going to call somebody. Please let them get some bloody reception.
Yay! Rescue is imminent! I figure I'll wait like 2 mins after they leave, and make sure they're not in the hallway.
Out of the cupboard! 98 mins later! Woohoo!
Fuckers shut the handle-less door behind them. Goddamnit.
So that was my almost two hours in the closet. My knees were so sore afterwards from sitting cross-legged for a hundred minutes. You should also know that, for the rest of the party, Greta (whose name turned out to be Danielle, but I prefer to think of her as the former) went on an on to anyone who'd listen about her traumatic experience being trapped in the bedroom for "oh my god, like fifteen minutes!" even though it was actually only ten, and fuck that bitch to hell.
Honestly, though, if you ever, EVER, find yourself in this situation, just excuse yourself politely and get the ever-loving bejeezus out of there. Fun Friends shenanigans don't happen in real life. I repeat -- hiding in the closet is never the best option. I'm still super relieved that there was no make-up sex, though.
So I was out with a bunch of friends the other day when I noticed something, something that has been freaking me out since. My three closest friends in the world all have these boyfriends who they've been dating for at least a year. They're all named James. That's weird, right? I'm pretty sure that's weird. But that's not the weird thing I noticed the other day. Obviously, that had crossed my mind before, like when I was introduced to James the Third, pretty much. I'm quick on the uptake like that.
No, what I discovered the other day will annoy me for as long as these people continue seeing each other. See, one girl and her James were telling a story together (which is another couple behaviour I hate, but anyway), and at one point, they made exactly the same facial expression at exactly the same time. And I realised that they look alike. Which of course got me thinking -- all of these girls look like their respective Jameses. And not just in a certain light, either. They freakin' look alike. In a creepy brother-sister sort of way.
Science tells us that we're instinctively attracted to people who share likenesses with us. I tell Science, "Science, I thought I dropped you as a subject in Year Ten, what are you still doing telling me things?" Part of me really likes this idea, though, that deep down we're so vain that our perfect mate needs to look just like us. We can deny compliments and loudly complain about our weight all we want, but our mating rituals cut through all the treacle and tell the world that we each think we're the hottest person on the planet, and when it comes to One and Onlies, we'll only accept someone that shares our amazing attributes. I like it. Science may not be able to take my hints, but it makes us all just a little bit more honest.
Naturally, that got me thinking about me and my preferences. Since my flightiness ensures that I'll never had a relationship that lasts more than a few weeks, I have quite a large test group to consider when deciding if I, too, follow this pattern. For privacy's sake, I'll change their names and post pictures of celebrities who share their physical attributes, but you get the idea. Naturally, let's get the ball rolling and start off with yours truly.
Name: Lorelai (and I'm not so up myself as to think I actually look like Dianna Agron. She's the only celebrity I've ever been told I look like, and she's super hot, so I'm gonna run with it.)
Hair: Medium length, blonde
Height: 5ft. 3
Distinguishing features: Great boobs, but that's not necessarily a feature I find attractive on men.
And the boys:
Name: Let's just call him...Aden.
Hair: Shaggy, dark brown, with a blue bit at the front
Height: 6 ft. 4
Distinguishing features: A tattoo on his chest, and the blue hair thing. Kind-of lanky. Good teeth.
Jury says: Certainly never looked like me in any sort of light. I remember finding his height particularly appealing.
Hair: Short, dark brown
Height: Not exceptionally tall, maybe about 5 ft. 9
Distinguishing features: He had a nice solid nose on him. Not in a gross Adrien Brody kind of way. It made him look distinguished.
Jury says: Nope, not this one either. Maybe more so than Aden, but nothing to write home about. We're still really good friends.
Hair: Short, Light brown
Height: Well over 6 ft
Distinguishing features: Buff footy player body. He had an arm sleeve tattoo, and he was also a real Aussie bloke's bloke.
Jury says: Personality? Sure. I can definitely see why got along so well. Looks? Not so much as a resemblance. In fact, if we're talking facial features, I see some similarities between him and Wade. Maybe I should hook them up.
Hair: Shaggy blonde
Height: Five ft. 11, maybe? I'm really no good with heights
Distinguishing features: Exceptionally pretty. Like, Jesus Christ, the guy was beautiful. He had an air of arrogant hipster douche to him, though.
Jury says: Hmm...I guess out of all my test subjects, we're probably the closest match physically. God, that sounds vain, doesn't it? After I bragged about his hotness and included the Angelface picture and everything? Oh, well. I'm being honest, just like Science. Blame Science.
Conclusion: Perhaps I haven't settled down yet because I keep finding people who are too different from me. Because it seems to me -- and feel free to disagree -- but it seems like I try to find men with physical attributes I'm lacking. I'm an absolute sucker for tall guys, despite the fact that I myself am a tiny little woman. My deepest relationships seem to be with brunettes, and I do like a man with tattoos. (Of which I have none, although I do have a closet dream to get the Jack Sparrow sun tatt on my bum.)
So I was trolling the net the other day for Beverly Hills 90210 news (how sad my life seems when I put it into words like that) when I found something fabulous. Something fabulouser than fabulous. Something that has to be seen to be believed:
90210 has a porn parody.
So what to make of this fine piece of filmic art? Well, I can't be sure, since I didn't actually watch the feature presentation. Because really, you guys, I have better things to spend my money on that 90210 porn. Granted, I'm curious, and if I had found a site offering to let me view it for free, this might be a wholly different type of blog post. But I didn't. And it's not. The only thing I really have to go on is the above trailer. And you know what, people? It's 137 different kinds of blow-your-mind amazing.
For one, there's the plot. Oh yeah, there's a plot. (Ish.) All of the best pornos have a plot. Even the worst ones kinda do, if you count pizza delivery boning as a plot. Unfortunately for the fans who are looking for the obvious hook-up, there is no Brandon/Dylan lovin'. I know, I know. Look, just because it's not in the porno doesn't mean it didn't happen, okay? It's practically canon.
Things I noticed from the trailer:
There is no Porn Kelly. There's a Porn Jake, but no Porn Kelly. Tell me, porn enthusiasts, isn't it sort-of counterintuitive to replace one of the prettier female characters with another male? Isn't the main idea of porn supposed to be a "more girls the merrier" type of thing? Perhaps in the early drafts, Porn Brandon and Porn Dylan were too busy fucking one another to service the ladies, so they had to bring in a ringer. I don't know. Why not at least call him Porn David Silver, though? And for the love of God, what is he doing with his nipple, and why does he think that's even the least bit appropriate?
Porn Jim Walsh gets the job of deflowering Porn Donna Martin. Think about how disgusting that is for a second. Jim Walsh, the part-man part-Yeti out of whose loins Brenda and Brandon were created, going straight nuts inside Donna Martin's sacred birth canal? There is really no room for this kind of thing in polite society. Even impolite society would find this somewhat distasteful.
There is at least one scene in which Porn Brenda and Porn Dylan are in Mexico. (As evidenced by them drinking margaritas while two men behind them are dressed in sombreros.) Which means that whoever wrote this screenplay has at least seen some actual 90210, not just the starting credits. I find this ability to stay true to the original subject material somewhat fascinating, considering that during another part of the movie, PORN DONNA AND PORN JIM SCREW EACH OTHER'S BRAINS OUT.
Andrea Zuckerman works at a sex shop, and she and Steve appear to do it on the counter. Which, considering their probable clientele, doesn't seem sanitary at all. I can't imagine the real Ahhhndrea ever doing it on the counter of anything, let alone a store that sells something called an "anal pleasure kit."
Things they got right:
The white background part of the credits. Porn Donna is even wearing the famous pink number and being picked up by Porn Steve! (With leg support from Porn Andrea!) And at the end, Porn Donna and Porn Brenda high-five one another! This is called commitment, people.
The "in stereo where available" graphic at the bottom of the screen. Say what you want about pornography being a cheap, pale imitation of the real art of film -- someone really went out of their way to make sure this looked as close to the original opening credits as they could. It's a completely pointless detail that was included for no other reason than to make the true fans smile. And you know what, faceless porno graphics nerd? It did. Almost as much as...
Porn Brandon. Everything about Porn Brandon is right, from his hair to his T-shirt to his over-the-sunglasses smouldering stare. You go, Porn Brandon. I like you just a little bit better than Actual Brandon.
Porn Brenda. I've yet to be convinced that this isn't actually Shannen Doherty using a porn alias. If it turns out that her first cat was called Madison and she used to live on Ivy Street, I'm taking this shiz to Perez.
Porn Dylan's "look" right here. He doesn't look anything like Actual Dylan, but check out his forehead wrinkles. There's no reason he'd be making that face except for the purpose of making fun of Actual Dylan's old age. I love that he made time to have a sense of humour in between boning Porn Brenda in Mexico and doing God-knows-what with Porn Brandon at the Peach Pit after closing hours.
Things they got wrong:
Porn Steve. Just...Porn Steve. I can't think of any other methods of dyeing hair that colour except mixing a hundred packets of the Easy Mac cheese flavouring in a huge bowl and literally painting his head with it. Also, he looks like someone put Vince Vaughn and Tom Hanks in a microwave for ten minutes on high, and this was the odd, smiling result of an experiment that should never have been attempted in the first place.
If you enjoyed This Ain't Beverly Hills, 90210 as much as I did, well, you're in luck. Next time, I'll be reviewing the strangely faithful and completely out-of-this world The Breakfast Club -- A XXX Parody. Hopefully I can find the whole thing, but if not, the trailer is even more detailed that the 90210 porno.
Wow, I haven't posted here for ages. To make up for it, take a squiz at a post on my blog, ABC Not-Just-For-Kids, in honor of the wonder that is Sesame Street:
Part 2 is also up, so enjoy!
I'm not really up on current issues. I watch the news and I read newspapers almost as often as I do gossip mags, but let's face it -- you don't exactly run to me for the 411 on big events, especially tragic ones. Bumming people out really isn't my bag.
You probably already know that the country of Haiti was hit by a devastatingly large earthquake about five days ago. That's not news to you. (And I hope I'm not the only one who keeps coming back to Cher Horowitz's, "So right now, the Haiti-ens need to come to America, but some people are all, what about the strain on our resources?" debate from Clueless.)
I live in Melbourne, Australia, aka the home of the Australian Open. You may have heard of it. Yesterday, some guy named Roger Federer (not sure if you've heard of him, though) decides he's going to round up the best tennis players in, like, the entire universe, and organise a tennis match between them all in one day, then charge people ten bucks a ticket and donate all the proceeds to the Haitian earthquake fund. And because Roger Federer is some sort of superhero/sorcerer hybrid, he does it. He fucking does it. I don't even know how to explain it besides superpowers/sorcery.
How'd you spend your lazy Sunday afternoon, guys? I spent it watching Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Andy Roddick, Kim Clijsters, Novak Djokovitch, Lleyton Hewitt, Serena Williams and Sam Stosur play an exhibition doubles game. Against each other. For anyone who doesn't follow tennis, that's like rounding up Michael Jackson, Barbara Streisand, Beyonce, the entire cast of Wicked and anyone who's ever played Sally Bowls in Cabaret for a leisurely game of SingStar. There is no way I'll ever get to see Nadal serve to Clijsters again in my entire life. It was freakin' amazing.
The main entertainment had very little to do with actually tennis playing -- the players were miked up, and all had fantastic senses of humour. (Who the hell knew?) They took potshots at each other, made fun of the umpires, Hawkeye, the linesmen. Novak Djokovitch did every amusing thing in the history of everything. I've been to more sporting events than you'd care to believe (I live in Melbourne, remember?), but this was far and away my favourite. It was relaxed and friendly and...amazing. I never thought I'd live to see the day Williams and Federer on the same doubles team. Oh, and at some point, they all decided to play at once. Mindblowing. It was a once-in-a-lifetime kind of thing. Okay, you know what? Watch it for yourself. You'll need to type "Hit for Haiti" into Google Video (not YouTube!), but it's worth it. Here's the first:
Not only that, but the event raised over $300,000 for the Haitians. Not bad, Roger Federer, you sexy, sexy superhero/sorcerer.
Okay, I'll admit that I'm getting on The Black Donnellys bandwagon a little too late. Three years too late, to be precise. It got cancelled after one season, like all good TV does.* I may or may not have cried.
I only really heard about this show because I'm a huge fan of Jonathan Tucker. I mean, really. The guy is all class. In my quest to watch every single Jonathan Tucker movie ever produced (which, in case you're interested, is going reasonably well), I stumbed across this TV show I'd never even heard whispers about before. The title sounded, to be quite candid, pretty damn lame. But since Jonathan Tucker had put his name to it, I knew this simply could not be the case.**
So I did a little digging, as I am prone to do. (Veronica Mars taught me well.) Apparently this show is part The Sopranos (without that annoying daughter), part The Departed (without Marky Mark), part awesome. Or all awesome, depending on who you talk to. It's about four brothers living in a tought-as-nails New York neighbourhood, dabbling in some serious organised crime. Now, I know you guys don't know me that well, on account of none of us actually meeting or anything, but that shit is right up my alley. I know large chunks of The Departed off by heart, and can recite them in a perfect Boston accent. I love Jonathan Tucker (or Tuck, as I believe he'd let me call him***), who is from Boston. Every single one of my TV hopes and dreams came together, hooked up for one night of tender passionate love in a swanky hotel, and spawned The Black Donnellys. At least, that's what I was assuming.
Oh, and Peter Greene's in it. So it must be awesome, right?
Even before watching it, I campaigned for it not to be cancelled, mainly because I just wanted to keep Tuck employed. Tuck's good people, y'all. I had a 'Save The Black Donnellys' sticker on my school diary, and had to explain almost daily to some clueless classmate what The Black Donnellys actually was.
This December, I said to myself, "Self, it's about damn time you bought yourself a Christmas present," as I quickly pushed all my shopping bags under the bed and out of Self's eyeline. I eBayed the hell out of The Black Donnellys (Self is pretty gullible) and 9 to 13 working days later, I got my 3-disc Black Donnellys DVD box set. And I only paid ten bucks for it. Me and Self were pretty damn pleased with ourselves.
I started the viewing on Monday, hoping to watch one episode a night and spread the joy for thirteen whole days. I finished on Thursday. Personally, I blame Self -- she's always so goddamn impatient.
Now that I think about it, it's pretty stupid writing a Random Review for The Black Donnellys, when I can't even begin to put in words how utterly fantastic it is. It's positively mind-blowing. It's everything good missing from television right now. It's everything good missing from life right now. Some American network bigwig killed it in its prime, and if I've learned anything from this show -- and I assure you, I have -- it's that I must hunt down this bigwig and shoot him, burn him with a cigarette lighter, shave his head, douse him with motor oil, cut off his toes with an axe and stuff his body into an oil barrell with the aid of a sledgehammer. And that's just for starters.
Tommy Donnelly (Tuck) -- he's the second-oldest in a family of four brothers. Despite his late father being heavily into neighbourhood crime, Tommy's spent most of his life out of trouble. But when his brother Jimmy fumbles a kidnapping, Tommy steps up and, in the process, starts a gangland war.
Jimmy Donnelly (Thomas Guiry) -- the oldest Donnelly. Despite walking with a limp after Tommy ran over him with a car in his youth, Jimmy's spent his whole life knee-deep in heroin and petty theft. He's way too impulsive to be taken seriously, and he hates that the neighbourhood mobsters would rather deal with Tommy than with him.
Kevin Donnelly (Billy Lush) -- brother number three. His allegiance swings wildly between Tommy and Jimmy, depending on what mood he's in and who benefits. He's a chronic gambler who never, ever wins, and gets in pretty deep with the bookies...until he decides to become one himself, but that's a whole other story.
Sean Donnelly (Michael Stahl-David) -- the young'un of the family. He's a ladies' man who'll steal any of his brothers' girlfriends away from them. He gets babied something fierce by his brothers and his mother.
Jenny Reilly (Olivia Wilde) -- the girl next door type. She and Tommy are clearly made for each other, but his tendency to occasionally kill mobsters out of necessity and familial pride keeps getting in the way. Damn all that mobster death, too, because they would've made a great couple.
Derek 'Dokey' Farrell (Peter Greene) -- the baddie of the piece. Seeking vengeance after someone murdered his brother (it was Tommy, but shh, keep it on the DL!) Dokey takes over the Irish part of town. Oh, and he's often armed. With an axe.
Nicky Cottero (Kirk Aceveda) -- wannabe head of the Italian crime syndicate. He deliberately started this whole war, which goes pretty much unnoticed by everyone else. He has a right-hand man named Vinnie, and the two share an subtle, but often uncomfortable, bromance.
Joey Ice-Cream (Keith Nobbs) -- the Donnellys' childhood friend. He's narrating the entire series from prison, but he's incredibly unreliable and half of what he's saying is probably false.
Look, you guys. This show rocks. I don't even know how to tell you. It's thirteen episodes of pure, unadulterated badassedness. And immorality. Don't forget the immorality. Here's a couple of examples of Tommy (who's supposed to be the good one, mind you) being a really, really sick-arse bastard:
--After murdering Huey Farrell, his childhood mentor, Tommy sits in the front pew at his funeral with his widow.
--He then hosts Huey's wake at the family bar, the Firecracker Lounge.
--He then goes to Huey's widow's house under the guise of helping her go through Huey's things, and steals a whole heap of money from their house...all because Dokey told him to.
--He then decides to become a mentor to Huey's son by giving him art lessons.
--He then borrows money from the poor damn widow to give to Jenny so she can keep her father's diner.
--Not really worth a dot point, but are we forgetting that Tommy killed Huey? The 'good' brother is doing these things! You can only imagine what the other three are off doing, can't you? I'll give you a clue: it starts with bookkeeping and ends in more murder. Oh, and heroin. And kidnapping. And drug-dealer bashing.
I'm not even kidding -- this show is the juicy double beef patty between two awesome hamburger buns. In fact, the word 'awesome' has lost all its meaning after watching this show. No word in the English dictionary will suffice, so I must turn to A Clockwork Orange for an answer:
Bezoomny. Choodessny. Dobby. No, none of these words will do. Stanley Kubrick, you've failed me yet again! EVEN FROM THE GRAVE, YOU TAUNT ME, SIR! Wait, what about 'horrorshow'? That's actually not a bad one. Horrorshow is quite apt, really. Let's try it out. The Black Donnellys is absolutely, positively, uncomprimisingly horrorshow. Yeah, I like how that sounds. Spread it around: The Black Donnellys = horrorshow.
If you haven't seen it yet...well, you'd better not start now. There's no way it can live up to the hype I've just created for you. Which is...which is actually the opposite effect I was after with this post. I...oh, shit.
Tuck would be so ashamed of me right now.
*My So-Called Life, Freaks and Geeks, Life As We Know It, just to name a few. All this from the medium that allows Flava Flav to produce a show whereby he attempts to find love. AND PEOPLE WATCH THAT SHIT.
**Yes, that is Jonathan Tucker in 100 Girls. I still stand by this statement, though.
***Tuck is my friend on MySpace. And I'm not one of those tweenie-bopper fangirls whose 560 friends are all celebrities. (Or people pretending to be celebrities.) Tuck is my one and only famous friend. He added me, you guys. Tuck actually sat down at his computer and ticked the little box that says, "Yes, I'll allow this admittedly very beautiful young woman to be my friend." You hear that? He called me his friend!****
****I'm not usually like this, I swear.
Do you remember back in primary school, when we had to write stories about what we did on our holidays? I miss that. It's like, once you get to a certain age, people stop caring. Well, last night I was one of the New Years' Eve revellers, as they call us on the news, and boy did I revel. I revelled but good. I'm still pretty revelled right now. (I think if you use a word more than once in a paragraph, it's okay to change its meaning.) So without further ado, I give you a bafflingly detailed account of the revelling. (I rarely forget things, even when I'm drunk.)
The day started off rather poorly. I had my driver's permit test scheduled, but it didn't exactly go to plan. When I got there, the bastard at the front desk told me that my Keypass is not a valid form of identification, and I can't take my test unless they have proof of my address. My goddamn motherfucking Keypass, a card that is a nationally accepted proof of my identity, is like Monopoly money to the pricks at VicRoads. Then the guy told me that he'd have to reschedule my appointment, and charged me $15 for the privelege. I told him that I wanted to punch him in the face. He assumed I was kidding, though, so I think from a legal standpoint, I'm okay.
I was forced to catch a tram home, so of course, it was late. I waited in the hot sun on a 35 degree day (that's 95 degrees fahrenheit!) to catch a stinky tram home. They also charged me money for this service, but I was pretty much expecting that. I stopped off at my local Safeway on the way home, and bought beer, dip and Red Bull. (The beer and dip for a friend's party, the Red Bull for my current troubles.) Not even the beer purchasing could cheer me up much, though, because I was asked to bring Corona, aka chick beer. Now I love my beer, and I wouldn't kick a Corona out of bed, but it does have a reputation for being a ladies' beverage. Which reminds me -- I also bought a lemon.
I arrived home, and promptly moped for a number of hours.
Moping took up a considerable amount of time, and before I knew it, it was time to go to my friend Bec's house for her New Years' Eve party. I was already making plans to get piss-ass drunk and pass out on her couch. By eight o'clock, I had had two glasses of champagne and was feeling much better about myself. Most of the partygoers-slash-revellers were Bec's friends from uni, so I knew approximately two people there. They were two of my best friends, though, so it was okay. (And yes, one of them was Bec.)
Not long after champagne number three, the heavens opened and it started pouring. My mate Kate and I decided to drink our champers on the porch, looking out at the rain, but that dream was quashed when we went to get chips and somebody stole our seats. It was extremely uncool of them. But we did have chips.
I had a discussion with a number of gentlemen about just why it is zombies are so into eating brains. Then we were done with the champagne, and it was beer o'clock. Kate's boyfriend came back with a double-strength beer for me, which proved to be a very good idea indeed. He and I then got into a discussion about how registered sex workers must declare any gifts given on their tax forms. It is, after all, the natural progression -- after you talk about zombies, you must then discuss the ways in which prostitutes pay taxes. I was becoming extremely happy at this point.
Kate and I then decided to Punk Bec by taking down her comically large History Boys poster and hiding it. Ashton Kutcher we ain't, but it seemed pretty damn funny at the time. After that, tequila shots happened. Two in quick succession, in fact. (A third would follow later on in the night.) At this point, I noticed that one of Bec's friends had brought his own red wine, and seemed very content with drinking it straight out of the bottle all night, much like a hobo. His lips inexplicably turned blue (much like a hobo...on a cold day), so I'm not entirely convinced it was actually wine in the bottle.
Bec and I went up to her brother's room for a reason I can't immediately remember. We got to talking about pornography, again for a reason I can't immediately remember. Bec's brother has a lot of it, only he had to take a number of his precious Zoo Weekly posters down when his new girlfriend came over the other day. I looked through the collection, picked out my favourite, then stuck it on Bec's wall to replace the History Boys poster. A group discussion about boobies followed promptly after.
Bec's boyfriend took the time to talk to me about whether or not going back in time to date Bec in 2004 would count as cheating on present Bec. I maintained that it wasn't, but the fact that 2004 Bec would be fifteen and he would still be twenty makes it a tad pedophilic and weird. He didn't seem happy with that response. I may have crushed his hopes and dreams.
By this time, I was relatively sauced. I received another beer, and after the boys discovered I was a beer-drinker (took them long enough), immediately asked me to sample some of Bec's boyfriend's home-brewed beer. Being me, I said yes. This is how I ended up with two beers at once. That was a serious highlight for me.
Just before midnight, one of Bec's gay friends came up to me and asked me if I would kiss him at midnight. His boyfriend was working at some dance party, and I think he was a little pissed off about it. I didn't have the good sense to find this at all weird, so I agreed. I may or may not have agreed to kiss someone else as well, but that never came to pass. God, I love being single and borderline alcoholic.
At some point, it was midnight. I remember counting down to six, and then it gets a little hazy. I made out with the gay guy, somewhat surprised that he stuck the tongue in. I began to question his sexuality at this point.
Kate and I went back out on the patio and started dirty dancing. I don't recall there being any music playing, but that did not stop us. Then they started to play the 'Milkshake' song, and I proceeded to dirty dance with another girl. (One I had never actually met before that night.) I swear I was not the initiator either time. I guess I'm just dirty-danceable. Suck it, Jennifer Grey.
I just had a memory come back to me right now, as I'm writing this. Freaky. There was a weird threesome kissing moment that happened at some point during the night. I actually would prefer not to discuss it. It'll be funny later, but it's way too fresh in my mind right now. Let's move on.
I tried absinthe for the first time, after Bec told me that it'd "fuck me up." Since I was well and truly fucked up already, I thought it couldn't hurt.
Soon after, I threw up in the laundry sink.
I sat on top of the washing machine for a while, thinking about stuff. I can be very deep when I want to be. I was given a glass of water, which I did not find as pleasing as the times I was given beer. I recall rabbiting on for a while about how glad I was that I had finally tried absinthe, because it meant that Ewan McGregor and I were now soulmates. Now personally, I think that was a pretty damn awesome pop culture reference to casually drop into a conversation, especially when I couldn't even remember my last name at that point.
I went outside for a while to talk with the boys. (The boys outnumbered us laydeez by a long shot. And strangely enough, most of them were called James.) Now I should preface what I'm about to say next by telling you all that I don't smoke. At all. I never have, and I was pretty content with never smoking for the rest of my life so I can play the high-and-mighty judgemental bitch card to every smoker I meet. I should also tell you that one of the guys (not a James) had just come back from a trip to Poland and its surrounding countries, and had brought back some Swedish cigars with him. Oh yeah. You know where this is going. I smoked a cigar. That's just baffling. A cigar, for God's sakes! And I didn't even cough lamely, like all the first-time smokers in movies do. Cool-Hand Lorelai, that's my name.
At this point, Kate had cut off my alcohol intake. It was a blatant case of the pot calling the kettle black. Since men do anything I say (I'd proven myself to be one of them, with all my beer-drinking and cigar-smoking), one of them went off and found me a Corona. It was chick beer, but it mattered little to me. The boy who was drinking the "red wine" had passed out on the bench, and Kate's boyfriend busied himself Sharpie-ing a penis on the side of his face. He also tried to add a twirly cartoon villain moustache, but due to the way the guy had passed out, he could only manage to draw it on one side.
The gay guy may or may not have groped me. I began to think that maybe he was not gay after all. He told me his gayness made breast-touching meaningless, but I have incredible breasts, so this simply cannot be true.
After my chick beer, I thought I would have a little lie-down on the couch. I ended up falling asleep, my shoes still firmly on my feet. The next thing I knew, it was morn. Morn, I tell you! Everyone else was asleep around me. The half-mustachioed one was right where we'd left him.
I got home at twelve in the afternoon. It was an extremely good, if not bizarre and crazy, night. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to call Ewan McGregor so we can get our freak on. Happy 2010!
Well, guys, it's New Years' Eve. (At least, it is in Australia. Suck it, America!) We'll wake up tomorrow in a new year, a new decade, and with a new hangover. Hopefully not a new tattoo. That one wasn't so fun last time.
But what of 2009, you may ask. Are you just going to cast it aside and forget about it? Well, yeah. I am. It's not a person, you guys. It doesn't have feelings. 2009 is like one of those Christmas puppies nobody can be bothered taking care of after Boxing Day. We're over that shit. Time to move on.
I suppose, for the sake of this entry, that I can look back and relive a few 2009 moments for you. Why not? It's not like it was a particularly sucky year or anything.
1) Did you keep any New Years' resolutions, and will you make any this year?
No, I didn't keep any New Years' resolutions, because I don't make New Years' resolutions. So you can imagine what the answer to that second part of the question is going to be.
2) Did anyone close to you give birth?
No. And ew, how is that any of your business, Internet? What my friends do with their uteruses is up to them and them alone.
3) What countries did you visit?
Australia. Wait...does it still count if that's where you live?
4) What would you like to have in 2010 that you didn't have in 2009?
Some fucking money, perhaps? And a pony. And nirvana. (I will accept either the state of mind or the band, to be honest. They're both pretty gnarly.)
5) What date in 2009 will remain etched into your memory and why?
The day Bea Arthur died. You truly are a merciless God, aren't you?
6) What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Oh boy, this is the part of the quiz where I'm reminded that I achieved absolutely nothing this year. Oh, I got a new job. And have kept it thus far. That's an achievement, yes?
7) What was your biggest failure?
Clearly, not achieving more stuff.
8) Did you suffer illness or injury?
No. I don't get sick. Truly, I don't. It defies all logic and biology, but that's just me. I'm a logic-defyer. I did watch Twlilght, though, which I think counts as both.
9) What was the best thing you bought?
The other day I bought this really cool Christmas pen. It's sparkly and fluffy, and when you press it to paper, the glittery Christmas tree lights up and plays Jingle Bells. It is literally the tackiest thing I've ever seen, and I love it to death.
10) How many people did you kiss in 2009?
I would really rather not say. 2009 was a very good year for me, kissing-wise. I don't want to begin the New Year with the world wide webiverse thinking I'm a slut.
11) Where did most of your money go?
DVDs. And beer. And ridiculous pens.
12) What did you get really excited about?
There was this Spanish kid in my Cinema tute at uni who I always looked really forward to seeing. His name was Eduardo, and my attraction to him at first was purely based on his accent and the fact that our nonexistent relationship was very entertaining for my mates. Then he started sitting next to me every class, and we actually became friends. (Sort of.) Heck, Eduardo, you were something else. Plus, you liked Fight Club.
13) What song will always remind you of 2009?
That stupid 'Single Ladies' song. Didn't anybody take offence to the fact that Beyonce was strutting around in, like, a bathing suit and heels, singing about how boys are so lame because they can't commit, WHEN JAY-Z TOTALLY PUT A RING ON HER FINGER? Thanks for rubbing it in, Mrs. Z.
14) What do you wish you had done more of in 2009?
Hanging out with my old mates. We're way too busy buying light-up pens and sexually harrassing foreign exchange students to catch up these days.
15) What do you wish you had done less of in 2009?
Cocaine. Ha ha, just kidding. Seriously, though, cocaine.
16) What was your favourite film of 2009?
The Dark Knight. What's that, naysayers? The Dark Knight came out last year? You don't think I know that? I went and saw it opening day. It's just that I didn't see any good movies this year at all. I could tell you my least favourite film -- The Ugly Truth. Katherine Heigl plays the same character in every single film she makes, and she should no longer have a SAG card. Oh, and Couples Retreat. Sucked. Big time. That's the last time I go see a movie because I like one of the actors in it -- damn your unconventional sexiness, John Favreau!
17) Which celebrity/public figure did you admire the most?
Jennifer Aniston. You know she's dating three guys at once right now? Eat that, Brad Pitt. Jen and her roaming vagina = my heroine.
18) What political issues stirred you the most in 2009?
I think there was some big inauguration thing in the US that I recall staying up until 3am to watch.
19) Who is someone new you met that made an impression on you?
One of my coworkers at the club. He is literally the gayest man on the planet, and yet claims to have a wife and children. Does not compute, Dean. I honestly think you're a raging homosexual, and that's totally okay by me. As long as you keep doing that origami thing with the napkins you do frightening well.
20) Sum up 2009.
What? Didn't I just do that? One of my highlights was buying a motherfucking pen. I do not wish to discuss this year any further.
That's it for me in '09. I'll be back bright-eyed and bushy-tailed in '10. (Unless I die of alcohol poisoning tonight, and if you've seen the state of my fridge, you'll know that's entirely possible.) Stay sexy, Internet!
Because my Notes On A Twilight post was so much fun, I think I'm going to make a habit of it, and Lorelai's Silver Screen seems like the place to do it. Come visit me if you have time. I'll still be here, though, so fear not.
Stay cool, hopeless drunks xx