Who is Oscar Anyway?

dolby theater

Tonight is the night. The night where all of Hollywood’s best actors, directors, producers, technicians and writers gather at the Dolby Theatre in their fancy dresses and bow ties to celebrate the successes of the film industry. The night where we jump for joy in front of our television screens if our favorite actors win the Oscar we hoped they would, and cry if they don’t. The night where that golden statuette is the only thing on the minds of millions of viewers around the globe.

Tonight is Oscars night.

The 85th Annual Academy Award show will air tonight at 8pm EST. I’m sure there will be much ado about it tomorrow as well. Especially since the ever so funny creator of Family Guy, Seth MacFarlane will be hosting.

But today, as sat next to my mother on the bus, I pondered about the 85th Academy Awards, and realized that there was something I longed to know:

Why is that beautiful 24 karat gold statuette named Oscar?!

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So I did some research and here’s what I found:

The statuette, formally known as the Academy Award of Merit, was designed by MGM art director Cedric Gibbons and brought into three dimensions by sculptor George Stanley in 1928. It is the most recognized trophy in the world.

The Academy Award of Merit is a knight atop a film reel clutching a crusader’s sword. It stands 13.5 inches tall and weighs 8.5 pounds. The film reel on which it stands has 5 spokes, each representing a branch of the Academy (actors, directors, producers, technicians, and writers). 2,809 of these statuettes have been presented since the May 1929 Academy Award show. The first person presented with this statuette was Emil Jannings for Best Actor in the films The Last Command and The Way of All Flesh.

This lovely knight came to be known as Oscar when Academy librarian and soon to be executive director Margaret Herrick first saw the statue. She remarked that it looked like her Uncle Oscar. The Academy did not use the term Oscar until 1939, even though Hollywood columnist Sidney Skolsky referred to the award as such when writing about Katharine Hepburn’s first Best Actress win in 1934.

A few interesting facts about Oscar:

1. He was initially made of gold-plated solid bronze.

2. After a few years the award began to be made of Britannia metal, plated in copper, nickel silver, and lastly, 24-karat gold.

3. The metal shortage during World War II caused the Oscars to be made of painted plaster for three years! Those who received these statuettes made of plaster were asked to come back for the golden Oscar after the shortage.

4. It takes 3-4 weeks to make fifty of these beautiful knights!

Oscar is one heck of a handsome knight. All the finesse about him once a year isn’t enough to understand how successful this statuette has become. Learn more about him here: http://www.oscars.org/awards/academyawards/about/awards/oscar.html

Time for me to go admire Oscar from my flat screen television. For all those nominated, may the odds be ever in your favor!

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The Very Viral “Harlem Shake”

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few weeks, you’ve probably heard about the “Harlem Shake” videos that are taking over YouTube. They began in early February 2013, and I have to admit, I can’t get enough of them!

The “Harlem Shake” videos are usually performed with one person dancing to the fifteen second intro of Baauer’s track titled “Harlem Shake” as a group of people sit around him or her doing busy work such as texting, reading etc. When the beat drops, there’s a jump cut to the entire group dancing like crazies for another fifteen seconds. The crazy dancing ranges from plain old jumping around to flailing one’s body parts all over the place. The best videos include people wearing random costumes. It looks extremely fun, and practically anyone can do it.

As reported on USA Today, “According to Kevin Allocca, YouTube trends manager, Harlem Shake video uploads have skyrocketed in the last few days. He writes that as of Feb. 11, 12,000 Harlem Shake videos have been posted this month” About 4,000 “Harlem Shake” videos are uploaded daily.

The man behind the music, Baauer, an electronic musician from Brooklyn, is mind-blown by the success these videos are bringing to his single. “Harlem Shake” reached number 1 on the US iTunes chart and number two on iTunes in Australia and the UK.

Here are a few of my favorite “Harlem Shake” videos! (In no particular order)

1. Harlem Shake Ryan Seacrest, Kendall & Kylie Jenner Edition

This “Harlem Shake” video was filmed in the studio with Ryan Seacrest, the Jenner sisters Kendall and Kylie and some other people from the radio station. It starts off with a guy wearing a sweater that says “Rich Fashion Advisory” walking from behind where Kendall and Kylie are sitting while thrusting his hands in the air. When the beat drops, everyone goes wild and the funniest person in the video is the guy wearing what looks like a frog suit who’s bouncing a turkey up and down. Hilarious!

2. Harlem Shake (Radio Station Edition) | talkSPORT

This one starts off with a guy wearing a pink onesie and a motorcycle helmet bouncing around casually. When the beat drops, boy you’re in for a laugh! I can’t tell which is funnier: the guy in the bubble wrap, the guy with the scream mask and the teapot, or the guy with the fisherman hat who’s banging the table with God knows what in his hand!

3. Harlem Shake Onesie Parents

As soon as I saw the baby during the intro for this video I knew it would be hilarious. A woman in a pink robe and motorcycle helmet flails her arms around while standing behind the couch as a man plays with a baby. When the beat drops, things get seriously weird and funny. Some extra people appear in onesie pajamas to join the fun, but the two to keep your eyes on are the man in the zebra onesie and the woman in the red onesie PJs. After the 0:25 second mark, these two are the only ones left in the room and they seem to be having a plant fight. You have to see it for yourself to understand why I can hardly type as I describe this video!

4. Harlem Shake @ Facebook

Facebook goes against the norm in their version of the “Harlem Shake”. The intro features a guy wearing a yellow smiley face head dancing while another guy wearing a mariachi hat bicycles around him in circles. Once the beat drops an extremely large crowd of people from the Facebook offices appear and the funniest two to watch for are the person in the penguin costume and the guy lying face down on the pavement.

5. UGA Men’s Swim & Dive Harlem Shake

I don’t know how they managed to do it but they did! The UGA Men’s Swim team did the “Harlem Shake” underwater! To be frank, the fact that it looks awkward while trying to wiggle around in a pool makes this version amusing on its own. Add a fifteen second intro with a guy on a table wearing nothing but swim briefs and a mask and you’re in for a good laugh. The guy under the table when the beat drops will have you rolling on the floor laughing!

6. Harlem Shake (Grandma Edition)

The guy in the fifteen minute intro can’t even keep himself from laughing as he dances! He knows we won’t be able to contain ourselves when the beat drops! I’ll just let Jackthegamer02’s comment sum this one up for you: “The [grandma] on the right looks like she’s trying to swat a fly”!


7. The Harlem Shake v69 (foreveralone edition)

This last “Harlem Shake” video features one of my favorite YouTubers, Connor Manning, doing the shake forever alone style. He breaks all the rules, rebel that he is, by starting off the video with a fifteen second intro of him sitting on a couch sipping a drink. When the beat drops, he put on the most ridiculous face imaginable and sways across the screen all alone! It’s so awkward and fun! I love it!

Which “Harlem Shake” video is your favorite?

Cute Love Quotes for Valentine’s Day

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With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, many of you will be getting cards for your special someone, friends and/or family members. What better way to personalize a card than a handwritten quote?! Here are a few love quotes that can be used for just about anyone during this celebration of love:

1. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.

– 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 (New International Version Bible)

For those of you who are of the Catholic or Christian religion, these verses are perfect for friends, family, and even a boyfriend or girlfriend. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 explains the Christian view of love. Even if you’re not religious, these verses speak volumes.

2. “There is always some madness in love. But there is also always some reason in madness.”

– Friedrich Nietzsche

It’s true that love can drive you mad. You would do the craziest, most out of this world thing(s) for the people that you love, and there will always be a reason for it. This quote is perfect for friends, spouses, and girlfriends or boyfriends.

3. “L is for the way you look at me
O is for the only one I see
V is very, very extraordinary
E is even more than anyone that you adore.”

– Nat King Cole

This little acrostic lyric is from Nat King Cole’s song “L-O-V-E”. It’s perfect for those old fashioned couples that love the 60s. The song has also been recorded in Italian, French, Spanish, German and Japanese!!

4. “…we accept the love we think we deserve.”

– Bill from The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

This quote will definitely make you think. What love really is it that you think you deserve? This quote was originally told to Charlie by his English teacher Bill in the 1999 novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower. This quote is perfect for just about anyone.

5. “…if you find someone you love in life, you must hang onto it, and look after it, and if you were lucky enough to find someone who loved you, then you must protect it.”

– Princess Diana of Wales

This quote is quite famous. Princess Diana said these words to her son William when he was a young boy. I remember watching Prince William and Kate Middleton get married on television that morning and one of the reporters recited the quote. It’s simply beautiful. This quote also works for anyone.

6. “…always hold on when you get love,
So you can let go when you give it.”

– Stars, “Hold on When You Get Love and Let Go When You Give It”

This quote is from the Indie Rock song by the band Stars called “Hold on When You Get Love and Let Go When You Give It”. It’s such a simple concept, but such a hard thing to do. This quote is perfect for a spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend.

7. “Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere. They’re in each other all along.”

– Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī

This very emotionally heavy quote comes from the Muslim theologian, poet and mystic Rūmī. To believe that your soulmate lives somewhere within you all your life is simply euphoric. This quote is one of my favorite for Valentine’s Day couples. It’s so romantic!

So don’t worry if you don’t have a Valentine this year. There are plenty of other people in your life that you can express your love and gratitude to using some of these awesome quotes!

Have a happy and safe Valentine’s Day 2013!

 

Album Review: Tegan and Sara’s ‘Heartthrob’

I first heard Tegan and Sara sing one day while shopping at a shoe store in Kings Plaza Mall. “Feel it in My Bones” came on, and I immediately dug my phone out of my purse to Shazam it. The girls teamed up with Tiesto for the Dance number. I feel in love with the song instantly.

However, I didn’t bother to do any research on the girls since the song was under Tiesto’s name. Come Friday night I find out that they’ve just released a new album on January 29th, and they’ve released seven other albums since 2004. Excuse me for a moment, but I have some music I’ve got to catch up on!

heartthrob

Tegan and Sara are 30 year old twins from Vancouver, Canada. They began playing the piano at age eight, exposing them to a world of music. They’ve collaborated with various artists, including Tiesto and Margaret Cho. Spotify labels them as a folk-rock duo, but their new album Heartthrob has an 80s feel to it. What I like about these girls is that they don’t beat around the bush with their lyrics—they sing it like it is, and that gives them spunk. Here’s a bit about the track listing:

1. “Closer”: Track number one is the album’s first single. The song is very dance-pop sounding, and the way they sing the word “closer” is sure to turn you on. The song is about turning an innocent love into something physical. The video for “Closer” features the twins at a house party with friends having a blast. Be prepared to see some serious makeout sessions and indoor camping scenes!

2. “Goodbye”: Track two is my absolute favorite off of the album. The lyrics of this song are so profound. The chorus goes,

You never really knew me, never ever
Never ever saw me, saw me like they did
You never really loved me, never really
Never really loved me, loved me like they did

Talk about a serious breakup! The girls sing this song with perfect harmony, adding to the melancholy of the lyrics.

3. “I Was a Fool”: This song is more of a ballad. It talks about being a fool for love. Who hasn’t? Many of us can relate to the feelings that this song brings, the sitting by the phone, staring at his Facebook profile page, waiting for him to call or message you. That feeling of hoping that it’ll last when deep down inside you know its over.

4. “I’m Not Your Hero”: On this track the girls sing about men who have had high expectations of them in a relationship. They leave the constant reminder that they aren’t heroines, but they’re definitely strong, brave women that cannot be taken advantage.

5. “Drove Me Wild”: The title says it all! Who doesn’t love a song about how a significant other makes them feel? No one? Thought so! The first few lines of the song are so sweet,

When I think of you I think of your skin, golden brown from the sun
Your arms outstretched, your hair cut shorter than it’d been
But still blowing in the wind

Whoever this song is about, he must be very special. Tegan and Sara paint the picture of a person so intriguing that it seems as though just watching them walk is the best thing since sliced bread!

6. “How Come You Don’t Want Me”: This song mulls over the painful realizations of a significant other losing interest. Tegan and Sara ask the million dollar question: “How come you don’t want me now?” Sometimes, the saddest part is that they don’t even have an answer.

7. “I Couldn’t Be Your Friend”: You know that one person that you see as more than a friend, but they don’t see you the same? Sometimes its kind of difficult to stay friends with that person afterwards. That’s exactly what this song is about. Even if you try again, you just can’t be friends.

8. “Love They Say”: This is my second favorite off the album. It oozes sappy romance, and I love it! The twins sing about how love is said to fix everything. The line “there’s nothing love can’t do” resonates with the listener long after the song is over.

9. “Now I’m All Messed Up”: Messed up indeed! This song touches on the subjects of one-night-stands, leading someone on, and mixed signals. Definitely one of those songs you would see in a movie scene where the girl is curled up on the couch crying while eating all the chocolate she could find at the corner store.

10. “Shock to Your System”: Last but not least, this track is about realizing one’s solitude. It’s like a shock to the system that “knocks your heart right out of sync”. Pretty deep, I’d say.

I hope these song descriptions made you curious about Heartthrob. Tegan and Sara do a great job of sticking to the theme of “heartthrob”. Some of these songs should definitely be added to your break up song playlist. So head over to iTunes and download the album!
What’s your favorite track off Heartthrob?

Strict Dress Codes on the Red Carpet

Showing off too much skin is a common 21st century problem. CBS is trying to do something to stop this problem at the 55th Annual Grammy Awards—for the duration of the show at least.

In the past there have been way too many females showing up to the red carpet half dressed. Yes, half dressed, because there is no way they finished putting all their clothes on. So for Sunday’s Grammy Award Show, no breasts, no butts, and no see-through clothing. To be exact, CBS asks that all “buttocks and female breasts are adequately covered.” They also request that all attendees make sure they do not arrive in see-through clothing and state that “thong type costumes are problematic.” Some are blaming Rihanna’s obscene sense of style at last year’s show for this ban.

Why would anyone want to feel so uncomfortable at a televised event? The red carpet wardrobe malfunctions are terribly embarrassing, and could have been avoided had these women chosen to cover up a bit more.

Here are a few of the most popular red carpet wardrobe malfunctions.

wardrobe malfunctions

1. Anna Faris:

In May 2012, Anna Faris flashed the crowd at the premiere of The Dictator in London.  She wore a blood red low cut dress. The slit of this dress runs way too high. Anyone ever hear of a needle and thread?! Fortunately, Faris, unlike many other females, was wearing a pair of undies. Close one, Anna.

2. Melody Thornton:

Former Pussycat Doll Melody Thornton really succeeded in showing off her body in that dress during the Elle Women in Music event in April 2012. The material of this dress is completely see-through! How and why did her publicist let her walk out onto the red carpet like this?! Was the lighting in her dressing room too poor to allow her to access the situation of this outfit? Have some class Ms. Thornton!

3. Emma Watson:

Alright. Sashay, but don’t lift with the hands!! Oh, no!! Emma?! Didn’t they teach you how to present yourself as a proper lady in England? This little mishap occurred at the 2009 Harry Potter premiere. Thankfully, she too wore underwear.

4. Katherine Heigl:

Betcha didn’t recognize her as a brunette!! However, that does not hide the fact that her left boob almost fell out of her dress on stage at the ShoWest convention in Las Vegas in March 2010. The strap of her scarlett dress slipped off while accepting an award on live television! Forget The Scarlett Letter. Five stars for The Scarlett Ta-ta!

5. Micaela Schaefer:

I don’t know what she was trying to prove by showing up to the May 2012 premiere of Men in Black 3 in an outfit like that. It seems as if Micaela got into the wrong limo and ended up on the red carpet instead of the strip club! Apparently the dress was made of VHS tape. Very creative, Micaela, but also very slutty.

Interestingly, none of these extremely embarrassing wardrobe malfunctions happen to men. What’s going on ladies?! Get it together and wear decent, form fitting, elegant clothing!

Who do you think will rebel against the CBS Grammy’s dress code Sunday night?

Dakota Fanning is “Letting It All Hang Out”

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Dakota Fanning is cast as Lilly Berger in the 2013 film Very Good Girls. Nude. Yes. You read correctly. I think there’s something contaminating the Hollywood air.

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Our sweet little Lorraine from Uptown girls has grown up, and she’s going to show the world what wonderful gifts puberty has bestowed upon her. Innocent Dakota Fanning is gone. There is no turning back from this one.

I suspected Dakota would be branching out to wilder roles after seeing The Runaways, where she starred alongside fellow actress Kristen Stewart as Cherie Currie. The movie contained various drugs, sex, homosexual, and masturbation scenes. Therefore, this shouldn’t really come as a surprise to many.

Very Good Girls is about two high school girls (Dakota Fanning and Elizabeth Olsen) who fall for the same guy right after making a pact to give up their V cards over the summer. How quaint. The rest of the cast includes Boyd Holbrook, Demi Moore, Richard Dreyfuss, Ellen Barkin, Clark Gregg, Kiernan Shipka, and Peter Sarsgaard. The Hollywood Reporter’s Sundance Review comments that the Fanning and Olsen do not act like 21st century teens in the film. According to critic David Rooney, the film is sometimes predictable.

Interestingly, the film has no rating yet. I see an “R” in Dakota’s future.

Naomi Foner, screenwriter and director of the film states, “The film deals with female sexuality and friendship in a way we haven’t seen before. These girls will be stunning young women in a couple of years, but they’ve struggled through high school with only each other. Most of us have been there. This is the summer where they finally get to touch real life.”

I wonder if this is true of Dakota. Has she really been there?

It doesn’t look like Dakota jumped at the notion of doing the nude scene right away. In an interview from Huffington Post, Dakota said, “Yeah, well, I’ve never done that (a nude scene) before and I’m very newly allowed to do that. I was newly 18, so yeah, it was, it’s kind of a sensitive thing, but it’s a part of life.”

A part of life indeed. I do commend her for being comfortable enough with her body to be able to appear nude on the big screen. That takes a lot of self-love and self-esteem, something a lot of girls her age lack.

Are you prepared to see all of Dakota on the big screen, right before your eyes?

The Couples On “Pretty Little Liars”

PrettyLittleLiarsIntertitle

If you happen to be a Pretty Little Liars fan, you probably wish the couples on the show were real. The way the men treat their women (and in Emily’s case the women treat her) is something hard to come by in the real world. Nevertheless, fans crave the on screen action from Ezria, Haleb, Spoby, and Emaya.

Whenever there’s tension between the couples on the show, tweets fly from left and right about how sad we’ll all be if [fill in the blank] split. Fans have grown to love the on screen romance and want to see the couples make it through. Let’s take a closer look at each of the PLL couples and what makes them special.

Ezria (Ezra Fitz and Aria Montgomery):

After watching this episode I no longer am an #ezria shipper tbh. 😪😪😪

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Ezra and Aria’s relationship is by far the most risky of them all. Ezra and Aria met before they knew that he would be teaching at Rosewood High, where the girls attend school. This relationship is filled with the thrills of sneaking around, making it all the more interesting.
Ezra quits his job at Rosewood High due to a student’s treat to expose the relationship to the authorities. He soon lands a job at Hollis as a college professor and is coincidentally reunited with an ex, Jackie, who also threatens to expose the couple. Aria’s parents find out about the two, and her father, Byron, is furious. Byron tries to promote Ezra to a school out of state so that he would be away from his daughter, but fails to convince him that he should leave. When Ezra’s mom finally meets Aria, she tries to bribe her with money to break up with her son. Ezra becomes livid, because a similar incident occurred with his ex in high school. At the time Aria doesn’t know, but Ezra had gotten a girl pregnant as a teen and his mom gave her money to shut up about it and have an abortion.
Wesley, Ezra’s younger brother, drops in during season three with a skeleton from Ezra’s closet—a son he never knew about. Apparently Maggie, the girl he got pregnant, never had the abortion. Ezra learns about his seven year old son from Spencer because of a prank from “A”. He decides to go visit his ex Maggie and her son, leaving Aria to wonder if things will ever be the sane when he returns.

Haleb (Hanna Marin and Caleb Rivers):

Hanna’s boyfriend Caleb is a former foster child. He’s a computer wiz who has come in handy as the girls run into technological obstacles while investigating “A”. Caleb begins living in Hanna’s basement, and one morning her mom almost discovers him. Hanna quickly jumped into the shower with Caleb in order to keep his basement residence a secret.  Calling those 3 minutes an awkward moment would be an understatement.
Caleb loses Hanna’s trust in season one and he leaves Rosewood, causing Hanna to believe that he never really cared for her. Before leaving though, he leaves a note with Hanna’s friend (now frenemy) Mona. Hanna never gets the note.
When Caleb returns he does everything to try to win her back. Hanna finally gives in, and it is now in his best interest to protect her from Mona, who has revealed her involvement with the “A” team.

Spoby (Spencer Hastings and Toby Cavanaugh):

In the beginning, none of us thought that anything would ever happen between creepy Toby and level headed Spencer. Boy were we wrong! Toby has become one of the sexier men of the cast, along with heartthrobs Ezra and Caleb.
The relationship between Toby and Spencer was not always smooth. Spencer once disapproved of Toby’s friendship with Emily, but as she saw him being taunted in the streets for Alison’s murder, she began to sympathize. Toby was proven guilty, and a romance formed between the two.
Sadly, Toby was reavealed as season three’s betrAyer. As part of the “A” team, he works closely with Mona, who is also part of the team. Spencer finds out about his involvement on the night of their anniversary, leaving her devastatingly heartbroken.
Spencer hires a private investigator to follow him around and find out what door the key she found labeled “A” opens. The private investigator gives her the address and she tells him that she hopes to find the things she and Toby always talked about behind the door. If she doesn’t, the investigator recommends that she move on.

Emaya (Emily Fields and Maya Saint Germaine):

#Emaya #EmilyFields #MayaStGermain #PrettyLittleLiars

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The short lived relationship of Emily and Maya was by far one of the most tragic. On top of the fact that Emily was discriminated against for being lesbian, which caused people to treat her differently, Maya was killed in season 2. Maya was Emily’s first girlfriend and first love. She had a tendency to lead straight guys on, and that bothered Lyndon James, a guy that showed interest in Maya. He begins to stalk her, driving her decision to run away to San Francisco with friends. Lyndon follows her and kills her, causing Emily to fall into a deep depression.
Paige comes along and tries to be everything Emily ever saw in Maya. Unfortunately, Lyndon wants revenge from Emily. He wants to make her feel what its like to lose someone you care about. Therefore he tries to kill Paige, but Emily ends up shooting him with his own gun. Caleb gets mixed up in this mess as well, requiring surgery for a bullet wound. Of course, Emily is now traumatized.

#PrettyLittleLiars #EmilyFields #Paige #Paily

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Let’s see how her relationship with Paige turns out.

We love the PLL couples, and hope that they can make it through any obstacle that “A” puts in their way.

Which PLL couple is your favorite?