Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The Punk Singer

Documentary film is one of my favorite genres. I will almost always watch a doc on just about any topic. I’ve seen films about everything from skateboarding to freemasonry. I love the idea that someone could have so much passion for a particular subject that they would make a film about it just to share that passion with others.

I came of age just as the riot grrrl movement was at its peak. As an angry/snotty teenager, I was definitely the target audience, but I could never relate to it for some reason. It’s not that I did not identify with feminism, the combination of the bad music and abrasive characters (notably Hanna) were a complete turn off for me.

I’m really struggling to say something positive about this film, but I am at a loss for words. I watched it in hopes that I would get a better understanding of where Hanna is coming from. I gathered nothing from this other than the fact that Hanna is still a bratty teenager trapped in a 40 something (apparently failing) body.



I understand that she was prominent in advocating a very important movement, but what did she actually contribute? Just the music alone from Bikini Kill, Le Tigre, Julie Ruin, etc. is so sophomoric it is almost embarrassing. Let’s face it; Kathleen Hanna is not a great lyricist. He rants resemble something I wrote in 10th grade. Her voice is earsplitting at some points, musically and just in general. They even address her “valley speak” vernacular in the film, but there is still no excuse for it.



Her stories are so self indulgent that I almost feel sorry for her. Just hearing Hanna describe how she “was SOOO wasted” while hanging out with Kurt Cobain is awful. I do not dislike Hanna because of her ideas or her past, I dislike her because she has nothing of substance to say. I feel like Hanna is the face of the riot grrrl movement in the same vain that Sid Vicious is the face of punk rock. Neither contributed anything to their respective genres excerpt for an aesthetic that certainly gives them far more credit than deserved.



I would love to see a doc on other key players from this movement like Kim Gordon. In some ways, I would Courtney Love (bitter rival) a more positive feminist than Kathleen Hanna. I guess if this film or the music of Bikini Kill encourages a young woman to further investigate feminism than that's one good thing to come out of this train wreck. I do respect her for her intentions; I just wish she had a more tactful way of expressing them.

The Grand Budapest Hotel

I had always considered myself an average Wes Anderson fan. My favorite films of his are RUSHMORE and TENNEBAUMS. The others I enjoyed, but they never really stood out for me. I definitely enjoyed MOONRISE KINGDOM upon initial viewing. Then after a while, the sugary sweet love story kind of gave me a toothache.



However, THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL really made me appreciate Anderson’s entire body of work as a whole. I also think GRAND BUDAPEST is the bookend to MOONRISE. I just really love when films compliment each other. I view MOONRISE KINGDOM and GRAND BUDAPEST as the yin & yang of Wes Anderson. I have the utmost respect for a filmmaker that can really explore the depths of his talent like this. It shows that he is open to examining his style to keep creating unique and exciting films.



I love the cinematography in GRAND BUDAPEST more than any of his other films. What I loved the most about this film is that there was a bit of underlying darkness within it. Standout roles were certainly Adrien Brody and Willem Dafoe which is interesting since Bill Murray usually outshines all. As the two villains in the film, I enjoyed the fact that they were a little more sinister than other villains in Anderson’s films. I love Bill Murray just as much as the next guy, but he can’t always have the best performances.



It's so easy to get lost in Anderson's universe. His stories remind me of early Tim Burton (pre-PLANET OF THE APES years). They have both created worlds I want to be apart of. I certainly suggest seeing this film as it will bring a smile to your face and make you long for the German alps.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Veronica Mars

A fandom was born in me during the early days of Buffy The Vampire Slayer. I stuck with that show though the tough days (season 4) and the good days (all the other seasons). I laughed and cried, sometimes simultaneously. When Buffy ended, a hole was left in my heart. I even tried watching the last couple seasons of Angel to capture that same magic and it just never felt the same.

Veronica Mars debuted a whole year after Buffy ended. Until then, I never paid much attention to anything else on UPN until I heard about this new show. I specifically remember one review describing it as “Buffy meets Nancy Drew.” I was instantly intrigued. Another review said Veronica Mars is Angelina Jolie in high school. I’m not exactly sure what that meant. I caught one of the first episodes and despite the fact that Paris Hilton was a main character, I kept watching.



I fell in love with Veronica’s acerbic humor and snarky retorts. She was incredibly independent and strong, yet very flawed. I guess in a way I related to her alienation and determination. Veronica and I both struggled with our own personal demons while managing to keep a straight face.

After those first few episodes, I was enthralled. I even got Chad watching Veronica Mars. We often went to the weekly screenings they did at the Alamo Drafthouse Village. It was such a fun show, but I had a sinking feeling with most things I love getting cancelled. I knew it was a niche audience and I could never imagine the same people watching Lost or Two and a Half Men actually getting Veronica Mars. We had three glorious seasons. I loved the idea of Veronica going to the FBI which was the direction she would have taken. Besides Buffy and Veronica, my biggest role model is Clarice Starling. To see Veronica step into that role as an agent was so exciting.



Fast forward to 2013:

I’ve never pledged to any kickstarter campaign. In fact, I often mocked it for many of the less than reputable projects floating around. However, that afternoon when I saw that the campaign went live, I did not make a second thought. When I pledged, the campaign had not even reached a million yet. I still couldn’t believe it was actually happening. I had no idea there was so much interest in a little show I loved several years ago.



One of the best experiences was getting to attend the kickstarter party here in Austin. Rob Thomas was absolutely beaming (he might have been a little tipsy too) from ear to ear greeting all the people who came out on such short notice. As a surprise, Rob flew out Jason Dohring as a special guest. The entire place was screaming with delight, myself included. I even got to meet the infamous Logan Echolls!



Fast forward to 2014:

The film was shot in less than a month. I admit I had concerns about it flowing with the show. In the end, I knew that no matter what, it would be something special for me and the other fans to enjoy.



The film starts as a recap of the initial three seasons. It gives you a background of who Veronica is and what Neptune is like. This makes it much easier for those who have never seen the show. There are tons of references that only fans will get and there are also tons of other pop culture references. Piz makes a Buffy reference that warmed my heart so much because it really brought together two things I truly love. I loved the film and I think as a stand alone feature, it holds up. As a climax to a long journey it is bittersweet. There’s several open ended questions left for us viewers. I love that Rob Thomas is writing a series of books about Veronica. VM lives on in the same way Buffy lives on through comic books.



Things I LoVe'd:

I love the grown up versions of all the characters. Their prospective jobs are very fitting. I love the exchange with Deputy Leo and Veronica. With the exception of Logan, Leo was my favorite love interest. I just really love the script that Rob Thomas put together. It reminded me of all the things I fell in love with about the show. His writing is really good as we witnessed with Party Down another beloved failed show. I loved that Kristen Bell was a little fuller figured having just given birth to her baby girl in real life. It gave VM a more mature look. Twenty-eight year olds should not look the same as they did at eighteen. Yet with her mature self, VM still slipped on that old satchel like a glove. I loved the Celeste Kane cameo that no one saw coming. I also loved the James Franco cameo. Most of all, I loved Dicky Casablancas. He certainly got some of the best lines.



This I did not LoVe:

I was not happy that there was no reference to Backup the dog. Obviously, he would not have survived all those years, but a photo or nod would have been appreciated. I did not like hearing Gia and Cobb doing it. Yuck! I wasn’t that crazy about the Justin Long cameo, but it was befitting that he got the only “fuck off” in the entire film. I did not want to see Weevil get back into his old habits. The whole man in a uniform thing never did it for me so the military storyline with Logan fell flat for me. Don’t get me wrong he looked good, and he does need some sort of structure in his life. I’m just not crazy about the storyline. Although, I cannot think of a better one for him so I guess it works.



Overall, I enjoyed the film. It saddened me a bit to see Piz so brokenhearted, but it’s all about Logan & Veronica. The scene with Keith getting hit by the truck gave me anxiety, but everything worked out in the end. Even if you never watched Veronica Mars, the film is a great watch. If you have seen the show, it’s a beautiful love letter to all the fans. Now if we could just get that Party Down movie made.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

True Detective

As some of you know, I’m not an avid television viewer. No judgment here if you are, I just have difficulties committing to anything. At one time, I was watching four different Law & Order shows throughout the week. Without cable, Tivo, or DVR it’s even more difficult to keep up with TV shows. I decided last year that I would try watching the entire series of Angel. It’s taken me six months to get to season four. I just don’t have the time or patience anymore to keep up with a series. However, I fell hard for True Detective.



I was immediately interested upon hearing the two main characters were being played by Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey. Could there be a more perfect pairing? I knew I was in for a doozie after the first episode. I’m still trying to wrap my head around the story. I haven’t felt this much affinity and personal investment for a television show since Twin Peaks.



*SPOILERS AHEAD*

The similarities with Twin Peaks run very deep. They’re both about solving a bizarre murder case. Both have unusual characters that talk in cryptic riddles. Sardonic humor is prevalent in both shows. Both shows center on a mysterious boogeyman; the Yellow King was just as frightening as Bob. Most importantly, both shows have a unique and rich style of writing that culminates into a truly thought provoking show.



While watching True Detective, I constantly searched for clues and re-watched the episodes for answers. I became so focused on the details; I failed to see the bigger picture which is why the finale caught me off guard. Some people were disappointed with the finale. It certainly took my breath away. In a way, I expected a bigger showdown between the Yellow King and Rust, but it would take away from the mystique that character created. The fewer details we know about the Yellow King, the scarier he is. It almost creates a mythological fantasy about him and how he came to be a serial killer.



Towards the end of the series, I was convinced that Rust & Marty would be killed off and they almost were. Then I realized the show was never about a serial killer or satanic ritual, it was about Rust & Marty all along. It was about Marty’s struggle with infidelity and isolation. It was always about the role he played in the lives of the women around him. Notably, the show was also about Rust’s personal conflict with existence and god. The show never felt preachy or self righteous, but it certainly brought new ideas to the table regarding existentialism.



Early on, I read several articles accusing True Detective of misogyny. There were complaints that there were no strong female characters. I feel like this is completely untrue. To dismiss the roles based on gender, you completely undervalue the show. Remember it’s the bigger picture with True Detective. All the female characters were empowered in their own right. Michelle Monaghan was absolutely amazing as Marty's long suffering wife. I never felt sorry for her because she always had the upper hand in the marriage. I suspect Maggie never felt sorry for herself either. I’ve heard lots of rumors swirling around regarding the potential new cast. McConaughey said early in season one that he would not return for a second season. Nic Pizzolatto hinted at a pair of female detectives. Nothing has been confirmed just yet. I’m not sure female detectives will work. I just don’t see two women having the same partnership that Rust & Marty had. That type of organic rapport is not easy to find and the creators certainly have their work cut out for them.



I just really loved how the entire story and the relationships within came full circle at the end. The themes of power and control were so gripping. Kudos to Nic Pizzolatto for pulling a fast one on me. I can only hope that next season is as great. This show will certainly obtain cult status in no time. If you haven't watched True Detective, I cannot recommend it enough. If you have seen it, please feel free to share your ideas.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Harold Ramis



Yesterday was a sad day for film fans. Anyone who grew up in the 1980s owes a great deal of thanks to Harold Ramis for so many fun times. I know I certainly do.

I'm not gonna pretend like my childhood was any tougher than the next person because it's hard being a kid no matter who you are. Every speed bump feels like the world is coming down on you. During those tough times, Harold Ramis’ films always made me smile. His films were a comfort even when friends and family could not be. They were also a revelation that the underdog matters too.

His films always conveyed the same message: that even if you are an outcast or weird, you can do anything. You could beat the bully and you do belong somewhere. I carry that lesson with me today when times get hard. His films also gave me some really beautiful memories of my family. I’ve never seen my mother laugh harder than when she would watch NATIONAL LAMPOONS VACATION. I always loved watching CADDYSHACK with my dad even if I didn’t get the dirty jokes. When I watch GHOSTBUSTERS now as an adult, I still feel like that same bright eyed kid. Not many things can channel that feeling.

I just hope Harold Ramis is knocking golf balls around with my dad in the big 18th hole in the sky. Thanks for the laughs Mr. Ramis, we’ll always have that goin’ for us, which is nice.



Tuesday, February 18, 2014

2014 Oscar Predictions

Here it is, the moment we have all been waiting for…The Oscars! I love The Academy Awards more than any other special event. For one thing, I always have a fun party planned, but I mostly love doing research for The Oscars. I love catching up on any and all films I may have missed the previous year. I also love predicting who will win the coveted statue. So here goes:

BEST PICTURE: 12 YEARS A SLAVE
This film chilled me to the bone. As I posted in my film review, I think it is the most important films of the year if not the past decade. Director, Steve McQueen has a way of grabbing the audience by the balls and this film is no exception. Nearly all of his films have a frightening darkness to them, but there’s beauty in that. Don’t get me wrong, I loved most of the other films nominated (except the pirate movie), but I think 12 YEARS A SLAVE is a cut above the rest.



BEST DIRECTOR: ALFONSO CUARON
Cuaron has well established himself in his native Mexico, but GRAVITY put him on the map here in the US. He’s made a slew of critically acclaimed films that have mostly flown under the radar. I think the Academy will finally recognize this. I would love to see Steve McQueen win this award, but I know 12 YEARS is not the last we have heard of him. He has the potential to be the next Kubrick or PTA. McQueen only gets better and better.



BEST ACTOR: TEXAS T-REX
It’s Leo’s time to get an Oscar and he most assuredly deserves one especially after his WOLF OF WALL ST performance, but this year belongs to Matthew McConaughey. TX T-REX blew everyone away with his role in DALLAS BUYERS CLUB including myself. He is on such an amazing streak of great films I can’t wait to see what he does next. His small cameo in WOLF was perfect. It’s so hard for me to pick one of these two, but I suspect McConaughey will take the statue. I only pray that his acceptance speech is as good as the one he gave at the Globes where he quoted David Wooderson. L-I-V-I-N!



BEST ACTRESS: CATE BLANCHETT
Every lady nominated for Best Actress already has an Oscar so this is some stiff competition. Blanchett’s performance in BLUE JASMINE was incredibly bittersweet. The film itself received mixed reviews, but there was no doubt about Blanchett’s stellar performance. I really enjoyed this film despite the criticism. I liked the portrayal of the other side of money and the resulting effects on one’s life. I don’t think many films address that scenario and I think Allen did a great job of making the characters relatable, but kept it in perspective of their roles. And just when you feel a happy ending coming on, NOPE we are reminded that this is still a Woody Allen film and there are no happy endings.



BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: JARED LETO
My near 20 year crush on Jordan Catalano has profoundly affected my judgment this Oscar season. Before I suspected Leto was even a nominee, I would have given this award to my other love, Michael Fassbender. His haunting portrayal as a sadistic slave owner in 12 YEARS was disturbing and compelling. Fassy is not only unbelievably attractive, but he’s exceptionally talented. He too has a great career ahead of him. As far as Leto goes, acting has not always been his main priority. I feel like music takes precedent in his life so this may be his one big chance at an Oscar. His portrayal as an AIDS stricken transvestite was heartbreaking. Both McConaughey and Leto underwent drastic physical changes for their respective roles. That is something the Academy always considers and rewards.



BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: LUPITA NYONG’O
Before the film was even over, I was sold on Nyong’o. She has a beautiful presence that is unmatched. The other performances in this category pale in comparison to this emotionally and physically demanding role that was portrayed flawlessly. Nyong’o is poised to become Hollywood’s it girl as she should be.



BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY: HER
I did not enjoy HER one bit, but I will admit that the script was unique and original. Is it enough to merit and Oscar? Not in my book, but I am not a member of the Academy. I generally enjoy the films of Spike Jonz, but this just fell flat for me. I didn’t even realize it was supposed to take place in the future! I was also praying that Joaquin would kill himself at the end of the film to at least offer some kind of impact in a lukewarm story that felt way too long. I could see AMERICAN HUSTLE taking this award and I would say that film is more worthy, but for some reason I feel like HER will be the curveball the Academy throws us this year.



BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY: 12 YEARS A SLAVE
I really think 12 YEARS is the front runner here. Solomon Nortup’s book is such a harrowing tale of unfortunate circumstance and civil injustice. I can’t imagine any other screenplay in this category having as much of an impression on an audience as 12 YEARS.



BEST DOCUMENTARY: THE ACT OF KILLING/ THE SQUARE
I still cannot decide which film should win this category. Initially, I felt like ACT OF KILLING would be the lead, but now I’m not so sure. ACT OF KILLING was one of the most horrifying pieces I’ve seen in years, not necessarily because of the content or subject, but because of the lack of empathy and remorse from the film’s main stars. The relevancy of THE SQUARE and how it relates to current events in Egypt leads me to believe that it could take the honor. Honestly, I would have loved to see BLACKFISH in this category, and win the Oscar. I certainly think that documentary had one of the most insightful social commentaries on something that has not often been discussed. It was definitely the most eye opening documentary of the year.





BEST FOREIGN FILM: THE GREAT BEAUTY
I loved this film so much. It has drawn many comparisons to LA DOLCE VITA which I can understand. However, the occasional, raw, sardonic themes in this film remind me of early Woody Allen. This epic tale of Jep Gambardella’s life and love is parallel to the protagonist in THE TREE OF LIFE. I really can’t see any other film in this category topping THE GREAT BEAUTY.



BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM: FROZEN
I rarely watch any of the animated features; it’s one of my least favorite categories. Actually, animated films in general are low on the list of film genres for me. I usually bet on Disney because let’s face it; they’ve cornered the market in this category. However, I do enjoy the films of Hayao Miyazaki. I recently got to see an advanced screening of THE WIND RISES and without any knowledge of the other films in this category, I think it should win. THE WIND RISES is much different from the other well known Miyazaki films, but his same style of epic tales is still very prevalent. This was such a great and endearing story! I especially love animated JGL and the super cute Werner Herzog sing along. It’s unfortunate if this really his last film.



EVERYTHING ELSE: GRAVITY
I have GRAVITY taking pretty much all of the technical awards and rightfully so.



I also really hope that there is a respectable tribute to Philip Seymour Hoffman. I'm still pretty torn up about it and struck with disbelief. When someone in the public eye dies suddenly, it's a cliche to rave about how talented that person was (even if they weren't). Hoffman was the epitome of true artistry and definitely contributed an unbelievable amount of talent to the film industry. He was in his prime and would have continued to grow with so many upcoming roles. It truly is a shame and a huge loss for any film fan.



There you have it; my picks for this year’s Academy Awards. Who do you think will win? See you all on March 2nd!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

2013 Highlights

Last year was full of ups and downs just like any other. I hate to be one of those people who constantly bitch about the negative things in their life or one of the people who pretend their life is perfect. Nothing is without faults, especially life! Every new year brings us a chance to start fresh. I’m not crazy about resolutions so I don’t make them. My goal is to always be a good person no matter what and not make it into a contest or condition. I am just very grateful to have had another year with my wonderful family and friends. I can only hope for another happy & healthy year. Without sounding too braggadocious, I thought I’d share some key highlights for me.

In no particular order:

Texas Frightmare Weekend 2013
I’ve always wanted to go to Texas Frightmare Weekend, but never got a chance. Last year we were lucky enough to win tickets. It was a ton of fun! I got to see so many great horror icons like Tom Savini, Danny Trejo, Virginia Madsen, and Chris Sarandon. It was also nice to get out of town for a bit. I got to eat breakfast at Grandy’s which was one of my favorite places to eat as a kid. I certainly hope we get to make it out this year!





My Bloody Valentine
I love MBV and was so bummed I missed them last they came to town. I was not missing them this time. Kenny and I had a great time at the show. After all these years, they still sound great. They were so loud; I could feel it in my teeth!





Washington DC
Last summer, we got to visit my friend John and his wife Erin in DC. We had a wonderful time catching the sights and watching fireworks on the Mall for Fourth of July. More importantly, it was great to catch up with old friends. I really love to travel and hope to do more of it in the future.



New Order
I was fortunate enough to see New Order in 2012 with my friend Ruth & her husband. Less than a year later we got to see them again, this time in Austin. I can’t even decide which set I enjoyed more because they were both incredible. However, this time around they did play my all time favorite song, “Regret.” I can’t tell you what an awesome experience it was.







Arizona Adventure
We try to make it back to Arizona at least once a year to visit Ross’ family. Due to work constraints, we haven’t been back for Christmas in nearly five years. The weather in Tucson was just lovely this time around. This also marked Zira's first visit to Arizona. We had a great time celebrating the holiday with family and friends. I come from a very small family and our holidays are very low key. Ross has a lot of extended family so we had a few parties to attend. It’s really nice to be apart of that because truth be told, I miss it sometimes. We also got to spend some time in Bisbee and Tombstone.



We’ve been to Tombstone before and had a great time. We watched the shootout at the O.K. Corral again which is always fun. We also did the tour of the Birdcage Theater Museum and the Tombstone Ghosts and Legends Tour which was my favorite.



Bisbee is an awesome little town filled with antique shops and other tourist attractions. The highlight was the ghost tour we went on at night. Before our tour, we wandered around exploring various locations. We came across this empty city park in the middle of the town. As we walked around I got such an eerie feeling about the place. How could a place for children to play be so creepy? Come to find out on the tour, the park is the former location of Bisbee’s cemetery. They moved all the graves to another site with the exception of a few unmarked graves that were unable to be found. Totally creepy! Ghost tours are awesome and a favorite activity of mine. Even if you don’t believe in supernatural occurrences, you end up learning a lot about the place you visit.



Austin Comic Con
I usually go to comic con every year and this year was bigger than ever. I’ve never seen that many people in the convention center (except for SXSW). There were so many great guests including Stan Lee, James Marsters, Robert Rodriguez, and Bruce Campbell. Bruce Campbell’s panel was by far the best panel I have ever been to. My biggest pet peeve about conventions is the asinine questions people get up to ask. Eighty percent of questions are things one could find out by reading IMDb or watching audio commentary. The other twenty percent of questions are wasted on professions of love and shameless ass kissing. Bruce Campbell ripped all these questions apart! He’s even funnier than I ever thought. If this whole acting thing doesn’t pan out for him, he has a solid career in stand-up comedy.



ACL Fest
I know I have denounced ACL Fest and the people who attend it many, many times. I still stand by my arguments. On the other hand, I couldn’t miss an opportunity to see Depeche Mode AND The Cure in one weekend.

Depeche Mode played all the hits and let me tell you, Dave Gahan can still shake it like nobody’s business.. Even Martin Gore looked good! The dog video during “Precious” was amazing; it even had a pug! I thought my head would explode from excitement.

Setlist: Depeche Mode, Austin City Limits Music Festival, Austin, Texas, 10/11/13

1. “Welcome to My World”
2. “Angel”
3. “Walking in My Shoes”
4. “Precious”
5. “Behind the Wheel”
6. “World in My Eyes”
7. “But Not Tonight”
8. “A Pain That I’m Used To”
9. “A Question of Time”
10. “Enjoy the Silence”
11. “Personal Jesus”

12. “Shake the Disease”
13. “Just Can’t Get Enough”
14. “I Feel You”
15. “Never Let Me Down Again ”





The Cure played for more than two hours! They also churned out all the hits and several B-sides. After the first hour, it began to rain. At first, it was a bit surreal standing in the rain watching The Cure (how poetic). Obviously, the last song was “Boys Don’t Cry” and since they went over their set time, the sound was cut. Robert Smith kept grabbing microphones on the stage to see if they worked, but the whole audience kept singing along without missing a beat. It was truly a beautiful experience.

Setlist: The Cure, Austin City Limits Music Festival, Austin, Texas, 10/12/13

1. “Open”
2. “A Night Like This”
3. “The End of the World”
4. “Lovesong”
5. “Just Like Heaven”
6. “From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea”
7. “Fascination Street”
8. “Pictures of You”
9. “Lullaby”
10. “High”
11. “The Lovecats”
12. “Close To Me”
13. “Hot Hot Hot”
14. “The Caterpillar”
15. “The Walk”
16. “Stop Dead”
17. “Push”
18. “Inbetween Days”
19. “Friday I’m In Love”
20. “Doing the Unstuck”
21. “Want”
22. “The Hungry Ghost”
23. “Wrong Number”
24. “One Hundred Years”
25. “Give Me It”
26. “End”
27. “Boys Don’t Cry”





Granted the torrential flooding was horrible and I would never do that again, but it was worth it to see two of my favorite bands. The best part about the third day being cancelled (we had no intention of going anyway) is that we got a partial refund!

Blake Schwarzenbach
It’s hard to say if this was a highlight for me; it certainly was out of the ordinary. Jawbreaker has always been important to me. It’s the backdrop to my adolescence and the soundtrack to my love life. I’ve supported every musical project Schwarzenbach has embarked on since Jawbreaker (especially JTB). I’m not sure if I can support his solo music efforts. Something about it seems so self indulgent and narcissistic almost like Morrissey (it’s appropriate & expected of Moz). Schwarzenbach has always written very sardonic songs (that’s what we love about him), but this performance just seemed a little awry. Is this a paltry ploy to stay relevant? I don’t know. What I do know is that I hope we don’t see a Jawbreaker reunion anytime soon. At this point, it will only tarnish a once beautiful thing. I could be wrong, and if I am please help me understand but I get the feeling it’s about making a buck now. You never want to see your heroes fall from grace.



Veronica Mars Kickstarter Party
I couldn’t be happier to see the Veronica Mars movie finally come to fruition. To see everyone rally around such a beloved show like this has truly been a Firefly moment. I’m so lucky to have been able to be apart of it. Rob Thomas hosted a party at the Dog & Duck Pub last spring to celebrate the close of the Kickstarter campaign. It was so much fun! No one really knew what to expect. As a surprise Jason Dohring flew in to celebrate with all of us. When he showed up, the whole bar erupted in high pitched screams (including my own). That’s right folks; I got to meet Logan Echolls himself. You can’t imagine how stoked I was!



Dr. Zira
As most of you know, I am an avid pug enthusiast. I’ve wanted a pug of my own for years. I had to wait a while due to housing constraints and funds; I needed to be completely ready for a new fur baby. My only condition was that I wanted a pug that needed a good home. I absolutely refuse to go through a breeder or worse, puppy mill. The adoption process is a long, stressful road, but in the end it was completely worth it. I can’t stress the importance of adopting a dog no matter how hard it can sometimes be. The process is often difficult because these dogs are coming from abused or neglected homes. The rescue groups want to be certain that this will never happen again. It was truly fate that Zira came to us and I could not imagine our lives without her. She fit in nicely with our little family. She loves us endlessly, even her big brother Spike. I think Spike would still like to be an only child, but he warmed up to her quickly. She keeps him active and young. It was a struggle at first getting her adjusted to her new home. In less than a year, we were Zira’s third home. Sometimes I wonder what her life was life before, but then I remember she will only have the best life possible with her fur ever home from now on. We still have challenges with Zira, but it takes patience to really take care of a dog. I look forward to our years together.

Feel free to follow Zira & Spike's adventures on Instagram!



I hope you guys have a wonderful year full of happiness!