Tuesday, June 28, 2011


OK, I'll admit it…I'm a Gleek. I love the show. No matter how thin the plots can sometimes be. No matter how horrible I think some of the musical numbers are. No matter how big Will's hair gets or how far Sue's venom spits. I love it, and I'm not ashamed to say so.

It's gone until the fall, and I have a new love. I'm such a TV slut! LOL

Again, everyone knows how much I hate reality television, but this competition show is one I can get behind. It airs on the Oxygen network which I know not a lot of people have. If you do, I highly recommend it.

They are in the process of picking the next star of Glee. How could that go wrong? 12 finalists out of 40,000 folks who auditioned now have the chance to vie for a 7 episode arc on the hit show. The great thing about it is that it plays very much like an episode of the show itself.

Each show starts with Homework. A song is chosen, folks are assigned roles and a guest judge from the show is brought in to critique the performances. So far they have had Darren Criss (Yum) and Edina Menzel (Major Voice, funny eyes). The winner of this challenge is then given a featured role in the current weeks music video shoot, as well as, some one on one time with the guest judge. Some of the greatest moments of the show come out of this time the kids spend with the star. They're a little star-struck, but at the same time are trying to glean every every ounce of wisdom they can from them.

The kids spend time learning the choreography for the shoot and recording the vocals. I myself, would like to see more of that. But it's really about the shoot and the characters that the kids create. These numbers really embody what the show is really about. Each week it's a different theme, much like on the television series.

After the shoot, and we see the final music video it's time for elimination. In this show you are either "called back" or not. 3 contestants (supposedly the weakest ones) are selected to perform a final number. These numbers are performed in front of Glee's creator, Ryan Murphy. I can't even imagine the pressure! They only have a couple hours to rehearse these numbers. What can be really really fascinating is Mr. Murphy's critique. He hasn't lam-blasted anyone as of yet. but I can see it coming as the competition progresses. But if someone didn't get their ass handed to them at some point, it wouldn't be Glee.

After the individual performances a list is posted outside the choir room in typical Glee fashion. One by one the final 3 take a gander at the list. Also in typical Glee fashion this is all done in slow motion with voice overs from the contestants. Once we find out who didn't get called back we segue into "Keep Holding On" being sung by the entire cast with the "ejectee" taking the lead.  How very Glee of them.

It's not Glee, but in a lot of ways it is Glee. It's what the show is about. In front and behind the scenes.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sir-Mix-A-Lush -- "The Lodge" Mojito

People often say that I am far too critical. I suppose I am. Quite honestly, I think I just hold people to the same set of standards to which I hold myself. That being said, I am not here to bash the Mojito I sampled last night at The Lodge.
Sorry, on a dark patio…I did my best.
At my request, Joe and Ryan, the owners have begun to offer $5 Mojitos over the summer. I am very grateful to them for that. I even sent him my recipe as a guide. I was getting tired of drinking Bacardi and Diet. There were never enough limes to drown out the taste of the diet soda. Once I saw the drink appearing in their summer advertising, I couldn't wait to get up there and try one. I was out of town so long in Vegas, last night was the first chance I had.

The first one I was served, was in fact, dismal. There was too much lime and sugar, and I only counted 3 mint leaves. I wish I'd taken a pic of that one to compare with one above, which Joe mixed for me himself. Joe did a wonderful job with the drink. So much so, that every time I needed another one I sought him out, turned on the pathetic "puppy dog" eyes and asked, "Please sir, some more?"

The Mojito is a rather complex drink considering the few ingredients that are required. Balancing those ingredients properly when crafting the drink is the key. Of the 5 cocktails I sampled last night (I won't count the first one) I would say 4 out of 5 were almost perfect. Yes, I had 6 Mojitos last night, not counting the 2 I had at home before I left. Don't Judge! I needed to have some of mine so I would know where I was starting from in the critique process.

So, how do they stack up to mine? Close! There are a few differences. I use 3 types of mint, they use only one. I use fresh limes, with just a splash of lime juice. They created a lime juice syrup to make prep easier (I don't fault them for that, I do it too in party situations). The only problem with that method is that it can lead to a Mojito that is overly sweet. I believe they used rail Rum, which I also don't fault them for. Next time I will ask for Bacardi instead. It'll probably cost me a buck, a buck I am more than willing to pay. At first, I though I would be disappointed that they weren't using crush iced. However, the square cubes they use worked nicely. Joe also muddled the mint and lime prior to adding the ice which resulted in a lot less "Mint Up The Straw" while drinking. I've always muddled with crushed ice because I felt it released more of the mint into the drink, but am then always picking small pieces of mint out of my mouth. I am going to try his method next time and see how it works out in mine. The huge difference was lack of fresh limes in the drink. I think I will ask for those next time as well. Lime juice is fine, but fresh is best.

All in all, I was very pleased with their effort, especially Joe's. He went to great lengths to ensure I had a great Mojito experience at The Lodge. It sure beats the bars like Ruby Tuesday's and TGI Friday's that use a mix. I have yet to find a mix that comes even close to the fresh hand-crafted drink.

Thanks guys! I know where I'll be hanging out this summer with a Mojito in my hand. The Lodge patio!

Thursday, June 23, 2011


Ok, summer TV sucks! Let me be the first to say it. Ok, ok…yes, True Blood comes back soon, but it can be so dark, sexy…but dark. My favorite light, happy, fun summer fare is…
I think I have talked about loving RuPaul's Drag Race in the past. It's the only "reality" TV show that I will watch. Its glamorous, fierce, and catty all at the same time.

Drag U is a little bit different. Here, ordinary every-day women come to the show to be transformed into goddesses. Every show has a different theme. Sometimes it's women who work jobs that men typically perform that need to be reminded that they don't have a penis. Other times, like the first episode of the second season, it's women tho have fallen into a rut and need some 5 inch heel therapy in order to step out of it.

I am always surprised by how emotional the show can be. Sure, it's a lot of fun and sequins. But a lot of these women have "issues". Most of the time it's something in their lives that has managed to make them believe they aren't beautiful anymore. To see them make the journey from frump to diva is inspiring to me. In the course of the hour, they manage to deal with their demons, learn to walk in very high heels, and study a choreographed drag number to perform on "Draguation" day.

The judges are also different on Drag U. Lady Bunny, the Dean of Drag…and someone who's been doing it longer than I have been alive, elevates these women to the level of goddess with her "Lady Lessons". The Dean of Dance…who's name I can never remember, is quite complementary of the transformations these ladies make. There is then always a guest judge, usually of some celebrity caliber. The guest judges are the most fun to watch. They are so truly delighted to be on the show. Not to mention the fact that it is a delight to watch Meredith Baxter say the word "titties".

So don't miss out on Drag U this summer. It's on Logo, which I know not everyone has on their cable. But they also rerun episodes on VH-1. It is an hour of pop-corn entertainment that won't leave you lusting for blood afterwards.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Running On Empty

I've had a horrible time coming up with blog posting ideas this week. So I am resorting to a second look at the stats my blog is generating.

Visits to the site have been really up and down for the last month. Keep in mind I remove my visits to the site from the data. So this is all traffic my other folks. I wouldn't want to purposely skew the data.

The post that received the most views this month was "Mine Mine Mine, It's Mine!". The post all bout my new car purchase. Strangely enough, it was the posting about my new favorite frozen dinner,  that came in second. After those 2, things leveled out. It lets me know that my viewership likes posts about cars and food.

Kim isn't going to be happy about this. Her blog is not my highest referrer this time around. In fact, she isn't even in the top 3 this time! I attribute this to the fact that she isn't posting very often anymore. This month's top referrer is (drum roll please) Weight Loss, Jabber & What Not (thunderous applause!). Thanks Laura, I appreciate the traffic and want all of my readers to click over to her blog…right now! Ok, wait till you're done reading my post first.

Aside from the US, my next top locations for viewing this time around are Germany and Canada. I also got a few views from Thailand and Singapore. Welcome to my friends from the Far East.

I am fast approaching the 3000 page views mark. How exciting! Thank you all for continuing to read and comment. But, as always, comment more!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Worst Day Ever...

…but not for me.

Friday was horrible. I missed my flight home from Las Vegas. It was the first time in 12 years at this job that something like that has happened. The thing is, I wish I had a really great story to back up why I missed the plane. You know…something like I was out partying all night winning huge amounts of cash at the black jack table…something like that. But no, we packed up the show and I went up to my room and made the mistake of laying down on the bed. next thing I knew it was 9am and there was no way I was going to make my 9:30am flight. I hadn't packed or anything!

So I got myself packed, checked out and headed to the airport. The helpful girl at the counter was able to get me on a 12:45pm flight through Houston that would get me back to Dulles at 11pm. So, onto that flight I went. I made my connection in Houston, and from there things just went to hell. Apparently United Airlines had a computer outage due to a bad storm in DC and everything was offline. We landed at 11:30pm and our flight didn't get to a gate until 1am. Things were pandemonium at the airport. Planes were just hanging out on the tarmac waiting for other planes to leave gates so that they could pull up to them.

Once we finally docked, the sheer magnitude of the computer breakdown became immediately apparent. There were hundreds of people waiting at gates for flights that had been canceled. Some of them were making a night of it, sleeping across benches covered in blankets provided by the airline. I made it down to baggage claim and there were even more people there waiting for luggage that was still sitting in the bellies of flights that had been canceled. Chances are, had I made my original flight, I would have been diverted to another airport and be stuck somewhere else as I write this. I would have been in the air when the computer outage occurred and a lot of flights didn't even make it to DC. So perhaps it was Kismet.

One of my bags didn't make the trip…thankfully not the one that had the important show related stuff in it. I went into the claims room to document it and there were a lot of angry people in there looking for bags from canceled flights. I felt bad for the attendants, it wasn't there fault, yet they were taking the brunt of some very angry people. I'm sure they aren't paid enough to take that kind of crap. Had it not been 1:30am at this point and had I wanted to take on an angry mob, I probably would have said something and wish now that I had…but oh well. When I finally got up to the counter I said, "Ok, this isn't about a canceled flight." The girl at the counter sighed a sigh of relief akin to being told your cancer diagnosis was an unfortunate mistake. Since their computer systems were down all she could do was offer me a number to call on Monday morning. I thanked her profusely, something I fear hadn't happened to her all evening and proceeded on my way.

I got home to my house around 3am and while I was in a vile mood that only 3 cocktails could have helped, I still took solace in the fact that there were a heck of a lot of people at that airport who were living a far worse day than I had. I wasn't taking joy in their misfortune. I was simply relieved that I wasn't sharing in it.

I will never miss a flight again! Or perhaps, if Kismet dictates, I will.

Monday, June 13, 2011

All I Have to say...

...here is that one last creative idea! The Tony Awards were wonderful Sunday evening and Neil Patrick Harris was amazing as the host. Is there anything this man can't do?

Brooke Shields...not to much. I can't imagine what kind of a mess she is making of The Addams Family. 

What impressed me the most about Neil was the last couple minutes of the show.

The boy can rap! He can rap a rap he's never rehearsed because it was written as the show unfolded. Not that is some talent! Of course he also got to perform with Hugh Jackman...I AM JEALOUS!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Hello from Las Vegas everyone! What a hellish morning I had! First I had to wake up at 2:15am in order to make it to the airport for my flight. Then I was seated next to "excited" children for both of my flights which means I got no sleep on the way here. I did comment to the one Dad who was at least trying to keep his kid under control that, "A half dose of Nyquil would work wonders next time."

So, once I checked into the hotel, I got some lunch and then laid down for a nap. I was woken from my nap by The Hubby. Apparently one of the A/C units at home had cut out during the day and I was supposed to be able to fix it from the other side of the country. Yes, I snapped at him on the phone about at least being able to take care of the house while I was away without my intervention...but all is well now. We have both apologized for being crappy to each other.

Two things I need to talk about from here at The Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas. Number one is this area of the pool they have that is supposedly "European Bathing". What I have found this means is that ladies are allowed to go topless. Not that any lady I know would ever go topless! How it works is that girls get in for free and men then have to pay $30 to go in. So the guys are paying $30 to see titties. When I headed out to the pool to eat my lunch the "concierge" or guy who checks my room key to make sure I'm staying at the hotel, asks..."Will you be visiting the European Bathing Area?". I said, "No...titties aren't really my thing." He chuckled, I am 99% sure he was "Family" The resorts pool area is beautiful. Here is the view I have of it from my room.

There were plenty of hotties to look at while I strolled around looking for a place to eat my lunch. Of course, there were also plenty of non-hotties and children to deal with too.

My other topic I need to hit on is chaffing. I have complained many times about the lack of humidity here in this city...I think mainly on Kim's blog, but really! It's just horrible! There are parts of me rubbing raw that I don't even want to talk about. I'm also sure that you don't want to hear me talk about them. Usually I make it a few days before this becomes a problem. Maybe it's the time of year? Who Knows! All I know is that I am going to be going through a slew of powder and lotion before I am done with this trip.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Not Too Terribly Upset...

…about having to spend the next week in Las Vegas. Many of you know how much I loath the city. This time I will be staying here the entire time.

The Mandalay Bay Hotel
Granted, I won't exactly be staying in the spot where that photo was taken the entire time, but it is a beautiful resort. I can think of worse places to be for a week, even if it is for work.

The truly horrible part of it all is that might flight out to Vegas is at 6am! That means I have to wake up at 2am and be on the road to the airport by 3am. All the while, most of you will still be snuggled in your warm beds, dreaming of sugar plums. Oh wait…that's Christmas Eve…never mind.

Once I get to Vegas I will have the rest of the entire day to enjoy the amenities of the hotel before beginning work on Friday morning. Or perhaps to nap…I guess that will depend on how much sleep I get on the plane.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Favorite Thing -- Banquet Cheesy Smothered Meat Patty

Ok, I know it's probably horrible for me, but I have developed a new addiction. Banquet Cheesy Smothered Meat Patties with Mashed Potatoes.

I mean come on! Cheese, Meat, Potatoes…who could ask for anything more? Ok, there are bacon bits too! HEAVEN!!!!

Here are the numbers.

So feel free to tell me how bad this is for me. But, it's not going to stop me from eating it. It is OMG delicious!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Renovation Sensation! -- The Bathroom

Look! It's a new feature! I've created this one to detail some of the renovations I've done on the Old Homestead…ie, The Church. I know after I teased a few weeks ago that my contractor was coming back to complete my list of needed renovation that you all have been waiting with bated breath to see what's been done.

First stop, the bathroom. A little history here, the main floor of the church is made up of the sanctuary and behind was a large room that used to house the nursery. I'm guessing this based on the fact that there was a huge window built into the wall to "spy" on the kiddies during the church service.

Let's start with the model I built many many years ago.

"White…my favorite color!" (Name the movie, win a prize)
Yep, I built a model. I thought it was important, since I've never designed a bathroom from scratch, to get a sense of scale in the space. So I bought myself some Foamcore, measured like a mad man, and came up with the above. From right to left, the water closet, the insanely huge "Porn" shower, and then the vanity.

Here is what the room looked like before renovation began.

Large & kinda messy, huh?
3 years later and I don't even want to tell you how much money, here is the result. Keep in mind, the entire renovation also included the bedroom, laundry room, and closet. We'll get to those another time. Once again, working from right to left.

The Water Closet
No, you can't really see people peeing and pooping through the glass on the door! You can see rough shapes, but that is about it.

The "Porn" Shower
Yeah, ok…it has a huge window in it. That, and it fits 6 comfortably. I wanted a shower that I could stand in the center of and spin like Wonder Woman. Keep in mind I had been showering for 3 years inside of a postage stamp downstairs. The water "rains" from directly above. I added the window so I would have a creative space to play with. I have all kinds of plans for it, I just have to decide which one I want to do first. For now a curtain seemed the fitting choice. The walls are painted with swimming pool paint to compensate for the damp environment. I just didn't feel like doing tile everywhere…everyone does that!

The Vanity…oh, and the sexy shower lighting in the background
Vessel sink and a Toiletry Panty Cabinet…Swank!

The vanity is the latest portion of the renovation. It is so nice to not have to use the tiny sink in the Water Closet when getting ready for work or to go out. I chose a slate-ish formica for the counter and covered the pantry with the same copper paper that adorns the ceiling. It helps to tie things together when you can. I am really pleased with the vessel sink. As a tall person, sinks so often wind up being too low for me. In this case I split the difference by lowering the counter slightly and placing the vessel sink on top of it. The shelving to the right of the sink was purchased at IKEA. It holds fresh towels and washcloths and the toiletries that are currently in use. Oh, and in case you didn't notice, both the WC and the Shower are up 2 steps. It was a necessary evil in order to be able to get to the main drainage pipe (a curse in older architecture). I like it, it's different, and I've only fallen once so far…hence the hand rail bar going in and out of the shower.

All in all, a successful renovation. I stayed very faithful to the original model. I think the only changes consisted of making the shower window a little smaller and shortening the vanity enough to include the "pantry". So…what do you think? Love it? Hate it? Got a question about that I'd be happy to answer in a future post? Say your peace in the comments.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

It's All Scott's Fault!

I have never been one to care for a car. I can't even tell you when the last time was that I washed a car that I owned. I mean, that is what RAIN is for! Now that I am the owner of a brand new car, that is no longer an option.

I enlisted the assistance of my BFF Scott. He is what I refer to as "A Car Guy". He owns 2 of them and has a much smaller driveway than I do. He's also the the guy who when walking around the town on our annual trip to the beach can let out a Wolf Whistle, and I have to turn and wonder whether he has spotted a hot man, or a hot car. Most of the time…it's a car.

I asked Scott what items I should purchase in order to best care for my new vehicle. What I got in return was a very lengthy and very detailed email. So, off I went to Walmart today to procure my car's beautification supplies.

$80 bucks and 20 minutes later!
This is more product than I use to facilitate my own personal beautification! I also don't require a bucket to carry around my own beauty supplies. This is obviously going to be an endeavor. Oh well, I can let my own face go to pot. I spent far too much money on this car for it to look like crap!

Speaking of crap, it got it first visit from a diarrhetic bird the other day AND there is a half inch scratch on the driver door that I have no idea from whence it came. I suppose it had to happen sooner or later. I would have preferred later tho. So, if you're looking for me this weekend, I will probably be at some stage of car beautification. "Wax on, Wax off!"