Does anyone out there remember this? I’ve been meaning to update for months, but life got in the way, as it so often does.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve still been writing… but despite how I may appear on social media, there are a lot of things about myself that remain somewhat private – things meant only for a therapist’s ears or my Xenga page diary’s pages. Ya feel me?
I’ve gotta get back to slaving away for corporate America, but I vow updates soon for the people who no longer read my sorry, forgotten excuse for a blog…
Several years ago, following the success of Finding Nemo, Disney added a new attraction to their California Adventure theme park: Turtle Talk With Crush. Crush was the uber righteous surfer bro turtle who assisted Marlin and Dory on their quest to find young, rebellious Nemo. See kids, look what could happen if you touch the butt. In this interactive experience, an animated Crush appears in an “aquarium” and speaks with the audience… Here begins my true story…
It was the summer of 2008 – Finding Nemo was a fam fave, so we naturally had to check out the Disney magic inside Turtle Talk on our annual Disneyland trip. Before the show, I noticed a “cast member” (as they’re called) staring my way. Whatever. People stare sometimes. My parents, little brother, cousins, and I scored seats up towards the front, while a couple dozen little kids sat on the floor in front of us. Directly in front of them, was the gigantic screen – er, tank?
Then, Crush the sea turtle swims out and he’s, like, totally gnarly bra. (Or should I say, turtley gnarly?) He talks about how stoned he got before his morning surf gives a great speech, yada yada. Then, the interactions begin, and he starts calling on audience members. Naturally, he goes for a couple of the little nuggets up front.
Crush the Turtle: “Yo, little dude, what’s yer name, brah?”
Crush the Turtle: “No way! Barnacle Ben, sup?! How ’bout you dude?”
Other Kid: “Sam!”
Crush the Turtle: “Stingray Sam! Right on, right on! … Hey, the totally bodacious blonde in the front… what’s yer name?”
… And that’s when I was hit on by an animated sea turtle.
Crush the Turtle: “Allllllll righttttt…. Angelfish Alex…”
Then the turtle made bedroom googley eyes. Honestly, Disney’s magical powers of animation are sincerely impressive, but it only got weirder. For the next 5 minutes, the sea turtle continued to spit mad game – asking me where I was from, if I had any questions for him, where I surfed… All flirty, remaining family friendly, while impatient children and families stared on the jezebel taking their precious turtle time. I couldn’t help but wonder who was behind the curtain. It was one of the oddest yet most awesome experiences of my life.
Finally, Crush moved on and wrapped up the show. Immediately after, as my family and I were looking at a Toy Story animation exhibit, I heard a voice behind me.
Stop. STAHP. That happened.
It was the cast member from before the show. He was the turtle! Even though the voice didn’t belong to the Disney prince of my dreams, I remain extremely flattered by the entire experience. I always appreciate anyone who is willing to come out of their shell for me. (GET IT, BECAUSE HE’S A TURTLE!???) My family got a kick out of it and I love any story where I’m the center of attention when they bring it up. So, Crush, wherever you are, I hope you are happy and well.
Basically, what I’m trying to say, is that if an animated movie star sea turtle thinks I’m hot, you should to. (Right, Dave?) Sorry for bragging about being the hottest betch outside the Magic Kingdom.
And we didn’t live happily ever after, but let’s go to Disneyland soon!
Why didn’t Alex accept the sea turltes’ advances? Because she was turtley sea-ing someone else!
TL;DR – One time when I went to Disneyland with my family I got hit on by the animated sea turtle in a Finding Nemo attraction.
I’m sure I’ve discussed this before, but Wanderlust and the original Star Wars trilogy are some of my favorite movies of all time. Wanderlust lands on my faves for two reasons: 1) I laugh hysterically every single time I watch it and 2) I relate to a lot of the themes throughout the film. I’ll save my discussion on the capitalist/social media obsessed/city vs. the hippie/nature/creator versions of myself for another time. What really strikes a chord in me whenever I watch this movie is when George (Paul Rudd) brings up that his wife, Linda (Jen Aniston), has always had so many various projects and how difficult it is to be married to someone who still doesn’t know what their major is. Ouch.
Linda, Linda, honey, listen! I feel ya, girl. I’m someone who is constantly switching from project to project and idea to idea. One day, I’m starting a blog, then I’m attempting a (sort of) weekly music post, then I’m starting an illustration line, then I’m starting a new real-life job, then I’m writing a novel, then I’m talking about grad school, then I’m planning on missing mimosa brunch for archery classes… like, fuck, man. Do I think I’m an octopus? Is this just another example of my insanity – somehow believing I can actually multi-task to this extent and be successful at any of it? It’s definitely an ambitious attempt, but I don’t think I’ll become the next Renaissance woman without more Adderall self-control and discipline.
Now, here’s where Star Wars comes into play.
Master Yoda once said, “Do or do not. There is no try.” That wise little Jedi’s words need to stay with me. I’m still such a Padawan, it hurts almost as much as people confusing Star Wars with Star Trek. But I was going into Tosche Station to pick up some power converters! OKAY. Enough Star Wars. I’ll stop. For now.
How do I organize all of these goals? Do I set up a vision board in my bedroom to show off to the drunk guys I bring home from the bar? Is there an app for that?
I guess this is the curse of being the daughter of 2 entrepreneurs. I guess I need to step up my game. Put me in, coach!
Pardon the minor hiatus, my life got remixed for a hot minute. If someone else changes the music, you’ve still gotta learn how to dance to it, right? Aight, time for this week’s batch.
Jamestown Revival I mentioned Jamestown Revival in my original post and featured them in my Songs of Summer, both for good reason. I won’t get into the long story of how I became personally acquainted with these talented Americana musicians, but I’m so happy I did. It’s rare to listen to an album and love every individual track – but that’s exactly what I received with their debut album, Utah. Zach Chance and Jonathan Clay are two rustic studs out of Magnolia, Texas who moved to Los Angeles to further their musical endeavors – and thus we were blessed with their single “California (Cast Iron Soul)”, which was the tune that would inevitably get me hooked. Out of every song on Utah, it’s impossible for me to pick a true favorite, but there’s something about Zach’s voice in the beginning of “Revival” that completely rev’s my engine. Besides downloading the full album, I seriously recommend seeing these fellas live. Not only are they skilled musicians, they’re terrific performers who provide a wildly fun experience that will get you stomping your boots and shooting down whiskey. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing two of their concerts now, first as an opener for The Wild Feathers and last week at their sold out headliner at The Troubadour. Hopefully this will add to their fast growing fan base of Revivalists, since I’m pleased to say I’ve already recruited a handful.
ASTR ASTR is a New York City based duo who apparently met in a yoga class. I first heard the Chainsmokers’ remix of their song “Operate”, but the original is just as groovy. Zoe’s seductive vocals over Adam’s electronic beats really produce a terrific sound. Definitely check out their Varsity EP when you get the chance.
Jaymes Young Originally from Seattle, Jaymes Young debuted his EP, Dark Star, last September and has toured with London Grammar. He can be also be heard alongside Birdy on the bonus track of the soundtrack to the motion tearjerker picture The Fault In Our Stars. Similarly to ASTR, I originally heard the Milkman remix to his song “Dark Star” before discovering how terrific he is on his own.
Haerts Like ASTR, Haerts is also based in NYC and like Jaymes Young, their debut EP, Hemiplegia, was also released late 2013, but Haerts has a completely different sound than both. Haerts places me in a teen 80’s rom com in the best possible way. I close my eyes and I’m transported to a school dance: the gym draped in streamers, the disco ball reflecting off my pink lip gloss, waiting alone until my very own Jake Ryan runs down the hall and makes the slow song at exactly the last moment. Or maybe he’s waiting for me outside, casually leaning against his sports car. Whatever. Something out of a John Hughes movie. BRB re-watching Sixteen Candles for the 300th time.
Mapei Jacqueline Mapei Cummings’ backstory is actually pretty interesting. She was born in Rhode Island until her family moved to Sweden when she was 10. She lived there until moving to Brooklyn at 18 and even lived with Lykke Li for a time before moving back to Sweden to “immerse herself in Stockholm’s underground rap scene.” (Thanks, Wikipedia!) Since hearing her single “Don’t Wait” at a Memorial Day Weekend BBQ, I’ve had it on repeat and it will probably stay that way all summer long. I haven’t been very into rap since “the hyphy movement” took over everything in high school, but “Don’t Wait” has the sound that I love. I can’t say I’m a huge fan of her awesomely named EP, Cocoa Butter Diaries, but it’s still worth a listen if you’re into rap.
If you can’t wait until next week and want to stalk me check out what I’m currently listening to, follow me on Spotify, Soundcloud, and DayJam.
Zhu So, I did a little digging, and Zhu seems to be pretty shrouded in mystery. Like, does anyone know details on this elusive motherfucker? Maybe that’s what makes him so great – it’s more about the smooth hmusic than the DJ persona? Whatever. I dig it.
Broods This New Zealand pop duo released their EP in January, with a full length album slated for later this summer. I’d highly recommend to anyone who likes Ellie Goulding, Phantogram, or CHVRCHES. Beautiful female vocals. Beautiful electropop sound.
Tanlines I first heard Tanlines a long time ago, but they’ve recently showed up on my radar again. I don’t hate it. They’re appropriately named, because this is the exact kind of music I want to listen to while I’m out in the sun getting bronzed. Call me crazy, but Eric Emm’s voice really reminds me of Sting.
If you can’t wait until next week and want to stalk me check out what I’m currently listening to, follow me on Spotify,Soundcloud, andDayJam.
Those of you who’ve seen the Ryan Gosling flick Drive may already be familiar with Kavinsky, whose song Nightcall is featured in the film. Aside from Nightcall, I was unfamiliar with Kavinsky’s other tunes, until about a week ago. Kavinsky is a French electro-pop musician, with some heavy 80’s influences. The end result is bitchin’ – I’ve been playing “Odd Look” (featuring The Weeknd) on repeat since I first heard it last week. If you’re a fan of French electro duo Justice, you’re going to like Kavinsky. Oui oui. J’aime ça!
Temples transports me to a lush field on a warm summer day, with a flower in my hair and a vintage VW van in the distance. The 2 year old British psychedelic rock band, whose debut album was released earlier this year, emits a beautiful hippie vibe that makes me wish I was on Haight & Ashbury in the summer of 1969. They also happen to go phenomenally with the new Ben Jones art installation in the lobby of my office. If I stop getting any work done from now on, you can blame the combination of Temples & Ben Jones for the natural high and hypnotizing trance.
The Wild Feathers
Mentioned in my initial musical post proposal/warning, I’ve been a big fan of The Wild Feathers for the last few months and was fortunate enough to see them headline at The Troubadour in early March. I’m going to be honest, I was not hooked immediately, but once I was, it was impossible to stop listening to them. With every play, each song grew on me exponentially – now I’m obsessed. They performed at Stagecoach a few weeks ago and I strongly recommended them to my friends in attendance, just as I’m recommending them to you now. The Wild Feathers are a great band for people who enjoy Southern rock influences but may or may not often dive into full blown country. This is an excellent band that you should familiarize yourself with ASAP. I’ll definitely be seeing them again.
Flume is HOT AF right now. The 22 year old Australian has some killer remixes that have begun to blow up. Currently, I’m trying to figure out my August schedule so I’ll be able to see him when he comes to Los Angeles on the 8th or 9th later this summer. Unfortunately, his remix of Lorde’s Tennis Court is not yet available on Spotify, so that’s definitely been missing from my usual playlist action.
If you can’t wait until next week and want to stalk me check out what I’m currently listening to, follow me on Spotify,Soundcloud, andDayJam.
“Basic.” It’s a hot word right now – currently being overused to describe an extraordinary amount of young adult females. The basic bitches. As much as I like this general concept, I think there’s a lot of misuse surrounding the word. There needs to be some clarification: What exactly makes a bitch basic? Is it an insult? What is the societal relevance?
Basically – pun intended – what I have gathered is that to call a young woman “basic” is to call her “common.” To me, that’s a whopping insult. To me, that says I am so lacking in unique and illuminating qualities, that I’ve been reduced to another shadowed face among the crowd. For many, that is acceptable – some people aren’t narcissistic attention seekers like me don’t prefer to stand out, and that’s okay. Common is a word that has never sat well with me. Typical. Average. Maybe it’s the trophy generation upbringing once again, but I have never been comfortable with being considered average. Even the word normal hasn’t often been in the cards, but that’s another post for another time.
To really dive into this social epidemic of “basic,” we need to dissect the qualifications of the basic bitch. This is where the misuse of the word comes into play. The criteria appears to be as simple as possessing a pair of Ugg boots and a penchant for Starbucks. That idea seems too… well, basic. It is acceptable to be somewhat of a corporate consumer in the capitalist society we live in, and to avoid that can be a little impractical as well as inconvenient. I fail to see the correlation between the enjoyment of skinny caramel macchiatos and a chick’s personal style, personality, or intellect… Things we should really be making more of our judgments based on, if we’re going to be judging people, which we usually are.
We’re throwing out this label to any female we disapprove of, with little to no regard for the meaning. It’s almost like when people use the word “literally” but mean “figuratively” and they aren’t using it ironically – they literally don’t understand what “literally” means. Let’s go deeper. (That’s what she said.) Let’s look at an individual’s substance. Their originality. Their sense of humor. The qualities they bring to the table. Few things are so simple and so black and white. Life is not a Buzzfeed list.
What kind of music do they listen to? Is it strictly overplayed Hot 100 songs? Do they have any taste of their own, or do they unwittingly rely on commercialism and marketing campaigns to tell them what they like? The same goes for movies. Books. Clothes. I suppose we’re just assessing individuality and replaceability. Shouldn’t we all strive to bring something new to the table? To be as wholly ourselves as possible? To be shepherds instead of sheep? To be original?
Maybe wearing a Catholic school uniform for the majority of my life pushed me towards a slightly more eccentric lifestyle. I desired to stand out among the seas of matching skirts and polo shirts. I never really wanted to be another Cathy Jean shoe. The challenge has always seemed to be fitting in without blending in. To be accepted, but striking.
When it comes down to it, I don’t find myself to be a basic bitch, although I doubt very many women do. My lifetime obsessions with things like Sci-Fi, vintage films, and classic rock music set me apart long before I really appreciated being a nomadic individual as opposed to another member of the crowd. I spent a hot minute in the Lord Of The Rings Club in high school, but I didn’t really know enough Elvish for the experience to benefit me. I’ve even ventured toward the other extreme of attempting that platinum blonde hair/ pumpkin orange tan look, and I can’t even begin to tell you what a disaster that was. However, do these qualities sum up who I really am as a person or what kind of person I am? Not in the slightest. I don’t think the determining factors of “basic” do that either.
“Basic” isn’t a moral compass, but more of an original one. Few want to be the extreme Venice Beach Freakshow fighting every ounce of their being to be as unique as possible, while simultaneously exiling themselves from society – so it’s still about finding that balance. Distinguishing yourself while still being socially “acceptable.” It’s sort of tragic.
Even after all of this examination, I don’t think the “basic” trend is really doing anyone any favors. If you are basic, you might be unoriginal. If you call someone basic, well, who are you to call someone basic? If nobody was basic, wouldn’t that make it more difficult to be original, and then if everyone were original, would everyone then be basic? And now, so many people are using the term, that “basic” is, in itself, becoming basic. Basically.
Like most things, we should all probably give less of a shit and just do what makes us happy.
P.S. Here are a couple other great reads that have been sent to me regarding the basic phenomenon:
I saw these Brooklyn based guys at a Halloween event last year and I’ve been hooked ever since. Their psychedelic sounds are funky and soothing and I can’t wait to see them perform again. They’re also chill AF.
I had only heard his vocals on Rudimental’s tracks “Feel The Love” and “Not Giving In” and after seeing him perform with them at Coachella, the kid has some badass talents. Definitely another name to check out in this white boy soul/R&B/pop/Motown thing that is happening right now.
Mentioned above, I saw Rudimental at Coachella and their set was off the hook. I didn’t really know what to expect and I was pleasantly surprised because the entire thing was fun and filled overall great performances. “Feel The Love” got me started, but my far and away favorite is “Free” featuring the vocal stylings of Emeli Sande.
I’m gonna be honest, I’m not really sure how to pronounce her name. Is is “Tove” like “Love” or like “Stove”? Someone answer this for me. Anyway, her song “Habits” is addicting. Definitely started a habit of listening to this chick on repeat.
Liz Nistico and Louie Diller are a talented and totally cool duo. Their songs are upbeat and definitely bring great vibes. It makes sense they have a song called “Happy With Me” because that is exactly how I feel listening to their music. Way to go, Louie!
If you can’t wait until my next post and want to stalk me check out what I’m currently listening to, follow me on Spotify,Soundcloud, andDayJam.
After getting a surprising amount of shit from an apparently large male audience for not including menswear suggestions in my Hey! Shiny Objects! Coachella post, I decided to avoid doing my day job attempt one… until I thought to myself, why the fuck are you asking for my advice?
“You’re a guy, stfu – this isn’t about you and what clothes you’re going to ruin from getting super bro-sweaty.”
– JP Barcenas
But seriously – I’m flattered by the amount of requests I’ve gotten from dudes, considering I do not work in fashion, nor am I knowledgeable at all regarding men’s attire. Fellas, you’ve been warned.
The general man wardrobe for ‘Chella is pretty simple: bro tanks, short sleeved button ups, ironic or trendy T’s, short shorts (sky’s out, thighs out – right, guys?), hipster jorts for those nuts (pun intended) enough to brave the heat and lack of ventilation, Vans or Converse or flip flops, a good pair of shades, and maybe a hat. Not complicated. Consider bringing a backpack and a flannel. Don’t be afraid to mix things up with prints, colors, body paint, and facial hair. Don’t wear any Native American headdresses. That’s pretty much all I’ve got for ya. Here are some pictures you could have Googled yourself of guys who should be my Coachella boyfriend whose outfit choices I support.
You’re welcome. Now stop messaging me on Facebook asking for outfit advice and put my whale body on your shoulders.