words kill, words give life

an education

Posted in books and stories, Uncategorized by Kaitlin on March 16, 2010

lynn barber, an education, book, cover, american, us, inspiration, adaptation, memoir, nonfictionLynn Barber’s memoir is a quick read – I read it in an afternoon.  I’ll admit, the only reason I bought this was because I had heard good things about the movie, but Barber’s voice makes it a must. She is succinct, but knows when to dab an extra bit of description.

The movie, “An Education,” is based on an article published in “Granta,” which Barber later expanded into the book. Her memoir starts with her earliest memories and continues into 2009. She has led a fascinating life.

Barber worked for “Penthouse” and published the revolutionary book “How to Improve Your Man in Bed.” She also worked for “Vanity Fair” and wrote “The Heyday of Natural History” chronicling how Darwinism affected Victorian natural history books. Barber is a dryly witty Scheherazade, an incredibly versatile new journalist and all this young writer could ever hope to be. lynn barber, smoking, author, photo, writer, black and white, woman, interviewer, journalist, an education, bookGay Talese step aside, this writing major has a new idol.

i don’t care about your band

Posted in books and stories by Kaitlin on March 15, 2010

The cover of this book by Julie Klausner first caught my eye, the title made me pick it up, and the endorsement quote by the ever funny  Rachel Dratch convinced me to buy it. Like I expected, it is a humorous look at a series of failed relationships. However, I was totally unprepared for it’s detours into psychoanalysis.i don't care about your band, book cover, julie clausner, cupid, heart, arrow, swimsuit, red, pink, blue, polka dots, what i learned from indie rockers, trust funders, pornographers, felons, faux sensitive hipsters and other guys i've dated

Klausner’s funny, but I don’t need the explanation that, unlike most girls who “drift toward the more unsavory characters in the dating pool,” she and her dad had a great relationship. When she leaves the action to analyze her motives, my attention leaves too. If you don’t mind a book that is half “laugh at my life” and half “this is why I’m crying,” then this is the book for you.

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BTW, and this is probably the writing major in me talking, “I don’t care about your band” could use one more good copy edit. I’m talking multiple words that are missing a letter or misspelled, plus some awkward  phrasing that slows the read.

excuses & lies

Posted in books and stories by Kaitlin on March 12, 2010

excuses & lies, knock knock, book, cover, inset, preview, urban outfitters, lines for all occasions I picked up this little gem in Urban Outfitters today. Now, I pride myself on being a pretty good liar, but even the best cons need a little help sometime. And this book may be the best assist a tired fibber could ever have.excuses & lies, knock knock, book, cover, inset, preview, urban outfitters, lines for all occasions

twitter + literature = ?

Posted in books and stories by Kaitlin on March 11, 2010

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“Twitterature” is a new book by nineteen-year-old University of Chicago students Alexander Aciman (left) and Emmett Rensin (right) with the goal of reducing more than eighty pieces of literature into less than twenty tweets, “to its purest, pithiest essence.”

You may doubt the purity of its abridgments, but “Twitterature” is undeniably pithy. My only complaint is that I didn’t think of it first.

the boy who couldn’t sleep and never had to

Posted in books and stories by Kaitlin on March 8, 2010

I’m uber-excited that I got this book in the mail. Watch the author, D. C. Pierson, explain his writing tips, and you’ll want to read it too.

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“he’s a stud, she’s a slut…

Posted in books and stories by Kaitlin on March 4, 2010

and 49 other double standards every woman should know” is a book by Jessica Valenti, author of “The Purity Myth” and founder of feministing.com.  It’s a hilariously detailing of stereotypes and a helpful look at how to fight them.

On stud vs. slut, Valenti states, “If you have a vagina, chances are someone has called you a slut at least once in your life.” And some of the double standards she chronicles are equal-opportunity offenders.

The chapter “he’s tough, she’s a tomboy” details her accepted childhood love of sports, while the boys who avoided sports were called girls. “You see, it was understandable for me to want to be a tomboy and do ‘boy’ things–because men are better, after all.”

gift guide no. 3

Posted in fashion by Kaitlin on December 12, 2009

Hello all you unfortunate people who love a member of the fashion obsessed. Here is a gift guide just for you to surprise your pickiest fashionista!

For $5 and under

Mock those who came before and failed with the book Peculiar Beauty: Three Centuries of Charmingly Absurd Advice.

A little Blair and a little Jenny, the Chain and Leather Headwrap.

True lovers of fashion never show their eyes. Help them hide with swan lake sunglasses (available in an assortment of colors).

For $15 and under

Tell her you think she’s classy with White Poise Gloves from ModCloth.

Keeping a timepiece on your wrist? So last year. The time’s at their fingertips with a rhinestone Riveria watch ring.

Because everyone should have cards and a teal case to store them in, the Tattoo Etched ID Case.

For $25 and under

Because you can’t afford an actual Prada bag, give them the lovely collage, My Prada Bag.

The Tatlin Necklace brings tribal to the city with chunky wooden beads (also comes in orange).

As The Fashion File attests, every clotheshorse needs this book: The Sartorialist.

For those willing to drop some serious cash

Since green is the new black, your fashion-lover might be trading in cab fare for a bike. Make the choice a classy one with the Chanel bicycle.

More stylish gift guides to come for the person who: knows everything about movies, reads constantly, is really weird but interesting, has everything, has nothing, doesn’t have everything but you still never know what to get him, and has everything because she made it all herself.

If you send out holiday cards, why not send one to:

A Recovering American Soldier

c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center

6900 Georgia Avenue NW

Washington, D.C. 20307

Because no matter what you feel about our government and the war, soldiers are people who deserve way more than a card.

gift guide no. 2

Posted in books and stories by Kaitlin on December 6, 2009

…the promised gift guide for the person who is always reading (aka the bibliophile).

For $5 and under

Readers can read their initials even when they’re wiping their mouths if you give them Monogram Cocktail Napkins.

Your friends may not be librarians, but they’ll feel like it after you present them with a 50 pack of Library Cards. (Unfortunately, this might mean you actually have to return any books you borrow from them.)

“Beatrix the Bookworm” is an adorable rounded corner little print. She’ll be right at home amongst your book lover’s shelves.

For $15 and under

Erase the worried search for a page-marker with bookworm bookmarks, a set of 20 with 5 of each design. Bonus: these bookmarks can serve as quick answers to the question “How’s that book?”

Maybe you can’t afford to buy a room full of books, but you can give that old book smell with “In the Library.” It’s a 2ml absolute perfume from CB I Hate Perfume (If you’re near Brooklyn, consider the gallery-only accord, “English Novel”).

If they’re always reading, they need somewhere to keep their books. The Quo-Tote carries the load and lifts the spirits with a Lewis Carroll quote: “Sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”

For $25 and under

Are your neighborhood readers the snooty type? Then they’ll love the display opportunity of the ZigZag Bookholder. Perfect for holding a few ostentatious tomes or keeping well-worn favorites near.

Perchance the book lover also loves to write? The Overdue Notebook may look like a library book, but it never needs returning. It’ s pages are a truly unusual assortment of  “graph paper, lined paper, and others printed with images of receipts, instamatic photos and passport stamps.”

All bibliophile’s may not be shy, but all will find “I think I’m in Love” T-shirt cute. It shows a quick glance between two peeps who have their noses firmly glued between the pages.

For a gag

To test the quality of suspected glamor press, PublishAmerica, James D. Macdonald challenged a group of writers to pen the worst book possible. Separately, they each wrote one chapter without knowing which chapter it would be, the plot, the setting or the characters’ relationships. The results were the travesty “Atlanta Nights” (by Travis Tea) and the knowledge that “PublishAmerica will publish any work, regardless of quality, despite their claims.”

For those willing to drop some serious cash

If given the choice, bibliophiles would probably sit cozily wrapped in a classic smoking jacket reading in their libraries all day. D&G offers a modern take on this most stylish of lounge-wear for around a grand with a blue satin men’s blazer and black velvet women’s blazer.

Keep reading for gift guides for the person who: knows everything about movies, is fashion obsessed, is really weird but interesting, has everything, has nothing, doesn’t have everything but you still never know what to get him, and has everything because she made it all herself.

If you send out holiday cards, why not send one to:

A Recovering American Soldier

c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center

6900 Georgia Avenue NW

Washington, D.C. 20307

Because no matter what you feel about our government and the war, soldiers are people who deserve way more than a card.

gift guide no. 1

Posted in movies and television by Kaitlin on December 5, 2009

The holiday gift-giving season is here, so I thought – why not blog a gift guide? Because I believe different types of people need different types of gifts, I’m splitting it into different posts. Gift guide no. 1 is for the person who knows everything about movies (aka the film buff).

For $5 and under

True movie snobs only want to see films in their original format. Show them you’re proud of their snootiness with the “this button hasn’t been modified to fit your clothing” pin (that’s the name of the button – the button actually reads “If you truly cared about a movie, you wouldn’t watch in in fullscreen.”).

What person who knows everything about movies doesn’t want something that was in a movie? While this Peppermint Fight Club novelty soap wasn’t made by Tyler Durden, it reportedly smells like “a punch to the face.” Fun fact: unlike the soap in “Fight Club” this homemade product is not made from human lipo leftovers.

Almost every film buff considers “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” a classic and Audrey Hepburn an icon. Celebrate the Academy Award winning actress with the Scrabble Tile Pendant “I love Audrey”. It’s simply marvelous, darling.

For $15 and under

Directed by the master himself,  George A. Romero, “Dawn of the Dead” is a must-see zombie flick.  Your favorite horror lovers can see zombies everyday with the Dawn of the Dead print.

You know those film snobs who think they can do it better? Give them the Hollywood slate board and watch them set the scene. Director attitude included. (although you might want to include some chalk)

Piles of movies getting your pal down? No organization system? The DVD Storage Box 2-pack will solve all that with room for over 50 DVDs!

For $25 and under

Provoke some deep musings with this quote by a renowned filmmaker, “If it can be written or thought it can be filmed.”  The Stanley Kubrick limited edition art print is perfect for the dramatic friend.

Does the person who seems to know everything about movies really know it all? Shed some light on the behind the scenes with the book “50 Designers/50 Costumes: Concept to Character”. So you’ll pay attention to the Costume Design category at the Oscars.

Speaking of behind the scenes, what about a year subscription to “Creative Screenwriting” magazine? Because the writing’s what really determines a movie’s quality (yes, I may be a tad biased).

For a gag

As a joke (or if you don’t like the person) give them them the action fiasco that is “Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever.” Making it worse than such horrors as “The Hottie and the Nottie,”  “Gigli” and “Glitter,” Rotten Tomatoes named this Lucy Liu/Antonio Banderas disaster the worst movie of the last ten years.

For those willing to drop some serious cash

If you have a couple grand lying around loose, pick up a Classic Chaselite Cinema Identity Sign. It’s the perfect addition to any home theater. (These are custom made so you can change the finish and color).

And for just a few hundred more you can give “The Birds” an original oil painting inspired by the similarly titled Hitchcock masterpiece. Beware: this is just one of many in Ginette Callaway’s Vintage Hollywood Series: once they own one, they may want to own them all.

Stay tuned for gift guides for the person who: reads constantly, is fashion obsessed, is really weird but interesting, has everything,  has nothing,  doesn’t have everything but you still never know what to get him, and has everything because she made it all herself.

If you send out holiday cards, why not send one to:

A Recovering American Soldier

c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center

6900 Georgia Avenue NW

Washington, D.C. 20307

Because no matter what you feel about our government and the war, soldiers are people who deserve way more than a card.

Fantatic Mr. Fox

Posted in movies and television by Kaitlin on December 3, 2009

Puppet animation and celebrity voices fantastically adapt Roald Dahl’s tale of an ex-crook fox who endeavors to stay on the legal for his family. Family and self-worth are essentials in “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” a morality tale with fairly lax morals.

I loved this film with it’s quirky characters and sunny art direction. A plus for me – The Beach Boys are on the soundtrack including my favorite song of theirs, “Heroes and Villains.”