The Library is Open

I don’t know about you, but it takes a pretty damn riveting book to lock me in. It’s not like I don’t like to read. After all, reading is what?

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I wrote this before the Guardian interview…don’t @ me.

And although I love to read a bitch on the reg, it’s probably more socially healthy (and mentally) to read a book on the reg.

I actually used to be a library rat back when I had a life. Mostly because I was way too poor to buy cook books and graphic novels. It also isn’t as shameless to borrow Lauren Conrad’s novel series that is totally not based on her real life, rather than shelling out $14.99 on Barnes and Nobel. It was 2010, cut me a friggin’ break.

Now that I’m not broke as a joke (just regular broke) I like to own a few gems, but a good used book store is always preferred (I consistently refuse to buy retail). The boyfriend is also not allowed in one recreationally because there are only so many non-fiction global conflict and obscure Australian cook books one man should own.

Here’s the Fabulous Weirdo Required Reading List. How did I choose these you ask? Would you stop mid description at a dinner party because you realize it’s probably not appropriate conversation? There you go.

Just kidding…kinda.

1. The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule

THIS bitch.  This lucky lucky bitch.  God bless her.  THIS bitch had a dream of being a true crime writer and worked at a suicide prevention hotline to pay the bills.  Thiiiiiiiiis bitch had a station right next to muthafuckin’ Ted Bundy.  The best part is THIS bitch (and in case you’re wondering I use the term with the up most respect. SO MUCH RESPECT.)  is a really good writer and went on to write more true crime books.

This is shit will keep you up at night.  Especially if you have any prior knowledge of what Ted Bundy did.  You see the unfolding of horror from the perspective of person that only knew him as an incredible advocate for people wanting to harm themselves.  But when it came down to it, it was just another opportunity for him to take control over life and death.  The way he would lure victims is exactly why we actively fuck politeness to stay sexy and not get murdered.

2. Transmetropolitan

I first read this series about 10 years ago when my best friend’s boyfriend (now husband) got it for me as a Christmas gift.  I had mentioned I was interested in getting into graphic novels and he said it was a good starter.  Do NOT take that to mean that is a basic little comic book. Spider Jerusalem is a weirdo with the best of us and lives in this future city that isn’t quite distopian, but still seem kinda creep because you could more than likely seeing it coming to life.  It was written in the 1990s and let’s the just say the author was way ahead of his time on gender, sexuality, politics, and society norms.

Spider Jerusalem is a journalist who gives zeeeeerroooooo fucks and works for an editor that literally smokes 5 cigarettes at a time (everyone does…because you can just grow a fresh lung when you need one.  I’d have 3 livers on reserve at any given time personally).

The forward is written by Sir Patrick Stewart himself, and if they ever considered a movie option, he’s be numero uno for the main role.

3. The Etiquette Guide for Nice People Who Sometimes Say Fuck

This isn’t so much an etiquette book as it is a book that hilariously and scientifically explains why humans are increasingly suspect of other humans. Spoiler alert: you interact with too many of them. This isn’t a further excuse to avoid people. It’s a vote for quality over quantity and that means you Instagram. However, in our day to day life we gotta interact with a ton of strangers. Grocery stores, bars, soul sucking corporate offices, the gym, the office break room when the scary cool people are all having lunch and they stare at you because like who even is she? Does she work here? ALL filled with the unwashed masses that frankly our brains are not evolutionarily equipped to deal with. This book kinda helps you navigate that; and mostly helps you understand your cave person brain.

4. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck by Mark Manson

Not a self help book. More of a get over your self book. This book…omg I love it. I would say bottom line, the lesson at the end of the day is sit down bitch, be humble.

It sucks to take responsibility for your own life because then you have no one to blame when it all goes wrong. But learning to adapt to the shit life throws at you and not being stuck to an identity or a preconceived notion of how life is “supposed” to go, really does wonders for your sanity.

I’d say Mark’s value system is if Tyler Durden got his shit together and stopped feeling sorry for himself.  Rising above the shitty first world fuckery instead of letting it eat away at him.  Project Mayhem could have been a dope indie production company if the Narrator had a page turner like this.

5. Mind Hunter by John Douglas and Mark Olshaker

You watched the Netflix series.  You already knew about the profiled killers from My Favorite Murder, Last Podcast On the Left, and Generation Why.  You gotta read the book.  Us murderinos are coming out of the wood work and others are following suit.  For once, I ain’t mad about the fact that people who never would have been interested in something “edgy” are jumping on the trend like a 16 year old into an over sized Metallica tee.

These guys are the literal founding fathers of what excites the true crime fandom.  They wanted to find out why the actual FUCK?!  Profiling criminals changed the way law enforcement finds killers.  This is an especially good pick if you need to unplug and take a break from endless podcasts and Law and Order binges.  DUN DUN.  

6. YOU Are A Badass by Jen Sincero

Contrary to this post, I’m not a fan of self help books.  Actually, reading so many so close together kind of gave me a mind fuck.  Unlike run of the mill “how to get people to like you by recreating your personality” this and the two others on this list will help you get to know your self, and possibly actually like your self by sifting through all the bullshit.

Jen says right off the bat (paraphrasing), it’s not your fault that you’re fucked up, but it is your fault for staying fucked up.  Then she goes into explaining how your brain works over your life development.  The thing is with this book is be ready to be a little overwhelmed.  More than a few times I was like “Staaahhhhppp!! Too real! No thanks!”.  She won’t leave you hanging though.  You’ll def feel more bad ass more than you already do by the end of it.

“Adulting”

Watching “Steven Universe” and “Vanderpump Rules” on my Ikea couch that easily turns into a double bed,  I “accidentally” let the neighbor’s cat in the house again and she’s not mad about the head scratches.  Got my favorite robe on, fuzzy socks on my feet, and a glass of rose in my hand.  My laptop is open to the various forms I have to fill out, print off, mail, and punch my bank info into, so I can get my nursing license transferred to California  in time for the move.  It’s a fucking drag, but at least I’m comfy.

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This is a pretty dream adult life so far.  I get to get my busy shit done while I get a little toasted with some TV on the side, then I’ll go to bed listening to a podcast where someone tells me a story.  I could be a little more organized, sure, but my bills get paid and I’m not living off mac’n’cheese and Oreos (not for lack of trying).  I honestly don’t get where this “adulting” accomplishment bullshit came from.  When did doing laundry and paying bills and grocery shopping suddenly became more anxiety producing than going to an actual job.  When I hear the word “adulting” I hear “mildly annoying life stuff getting blown out of proportion”.

I’ll say it myself, I can get a little internally misanthropic about my Millennial status.  There are pros and cons of every generation and I tend to be critical.   Whatever.  However, for some reason my generation has taken to doing life stuff, (keeping a clean house and answering e-mails) like self inflicted chore torture that deserves a prize at the end.  Have the fucking glass of wine whether you mopped your damn kitchen or not.  I don’t need to see your ripped off Instagram meme about it.  I love being melodramatic but this is BORING.

Procrastination in my middle name, folding laundry sucks, I can’t hear my music when my vacuum’s running, and I wish I could eat Chinese food every night.  But when I look up and my bills are late, I can’t find my favorite top, my house is fucked and I’m bloated until the next election, I’ll have no one to blame but myself.  And that is worse than stubbing your toe and knowing that you are literally emotionally enraged with a chair leg.

I get it.  We’re a generation of new adults entering a workforce with seemingly useless degrees and debt up to our ears at the same age our parents were birthing us and buying houses.  Cool.  Who gives a fuck.  My parents got married at 23 and bought my childhood home at 26.  Think about the guy you were dating at 23…husband material or no? And as far as buying a house, do you live in a place where you want to be locked in like that?  News flash:  Our parents had no idea what they were doing either.  No one does.  Just because we’re not hitting the same giant “milestones” doesn’t mean we’re not qualified to complete a mundane “to-do” list.  It doesn’t make us less “adult”.

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And since the fuck when did we hold to convention anyway?  We’re the generation that made it possible for people to out make the rest of us by being really, really, really, ridiculously good looking (and using FaceTune) on Instagram.

I like having a clean house, I like my closet organized, and I like being able to cook a dinner from what’s in my fridge. I like watching “Steven Universe” and seeing what shimmery nail polish looks like with a matte top coat.  Sometimes I won’t put on pants all day, but there won’t be any dishes in my sink.  And even if there are, I’m having some ice cream and champagne anyway.

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Stay fabulous.  Stay weird.

 

Happy Fabulous and Weird Fall

Grab your leggings and carving knives, Weirdos! Fall is upon us!  If your like me, you have had a love for Fall long before Instagram exploded with #footballscarvesandPSL (#fuckingkillme #dirtychaioverPSL).  Don’t get me wrong, I’m a die hard all things Cleveland fan, have picked a pumpkin from a patch a time or two, and tend to live in leggings when I’m not in scrubs, but Fall has always had a special place in my cold weird black heart for one overarching reason:  HALLOWEEN.

Halloween has been my favorite holiday almost my entire life.  As a chubby little outcast, nothing was more fun than dressing up as a pretty princess, scary witch, or slutty insert-costume-here (in college, don’t worry I wasn’t a 12 year old “sexy Raggedy Ann”… but the costume exists).

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“It’s was my favorite doll as a young girl”

But as I’ve grown up, into a not-so- elegant lady, Halloween is a holiday where I can embrace my weird, fabulous self.  Think Alexander McQueen skull scarves, my FAVORITE tee shirt with “rock on” skeleton hand, witchy hats, black crystals, ankle boots, all black everything ON ON ON.  I love mixing the creepy and spooky with the main stream fabulous.  I couldn’t find the rock on skeleton hand tee, but here are a few key pieces of a lux meets weird look.backtofall

It would be too easy to poke fun at the basic bitch in her Uggs throwing leaves in a Mayfair filter or whatever the fuck it is they do; I’d much rather bask in fabulous weirdness (though I’m not saying I’m above posting something similar in the future).  Fortunately it’s only September so there will be plenty of fabulous, weird, and creepy things to come!

Stay Fabulous. Stay Weird.

Not-so-Fabulous Travel Woes

I love to travel, but by body does not.  Everything in my gut turns to concrete, all the water I drink hangs out in my face, hands, and feet, and my alcohol tolerance disappears.  I look like a teenager half-assing an eating disorder at Kroger the week before I go anywhere with all the Diurex, biscodyl, and coconut water in my cart.  AND they have to ID you for the Diurex.  I’ve had more comfortable eye contact with the 15 year old guy who works the register at the CVS when I have to emergently buy a box of super absorbent tampons.  But so help me God, if there is a photo to had, an occasion for a bathing suit, a night on the town, general walking, attempting to sleep comfortably…I will endure that eye contact.

This time around I’m taking more of a rustic/ domestic get-a-way.  I’m busting out two night shifts, flying my ass to Brooklyn (probably sleep deprived and therefore cranky), taking a beat with my gorgeous cousin, then sleeping through an hour and a half drive to the Pocono Lake Preserve.

I am by no means call this a “camping trip” or even “glamping” (which honestly sounds worse.  Who wants the added pressure of pretending to be comfortable and glamorous while camping).  But we are staying in a lake house cabin thingy on a man made lake preserve, that rich people from New York made into a private summer retreat 100 years ago.  This is some kind of bougie version of something I don’t even do the regular version of.

There will be heat, cold, mosquitos, physical activities, causes for me to be in a bathing suit.  All nightmarish situations.  Don’t start with the feminist a beach body is a body at the beach.  I get it.  Girl power.  Whatever.  My issue is not the way I look in a bathing suit, it’s the fact that I enjoying things like moving when in the water, and my butt can barely be contained in anything other than board shorts.  I’m not saying I’m fat, just weirdly well endowed.  So I’m trying to shop for a cute two piece come to find that something called the “itsy bitsy hipster” is the new kewl bikini bottom cut.  WHO IS WEARING THIS?  I’m trying to get my swim on, not hang out on a yacht in Miami with my meal ticket.  It was literally all I could find this late in the summer beside swim skirts, and those things drag me down.

So with all the bloating, concrete gut, booty spilling bottoms, mosquito bites, and stuffy sinus from flying, this should be a pretty interesting weekend trip.  I always have travel anxiety, and party anxiety, and seeing people after a long while anxiety. But I’ll take a take a deep breath and go with the weirdo flow.

 

A Weirdo Away

Travel is a special thing to me.  When I was 16, I begged my parents to let me go on the month long Euro Trip my high school social studies teacher organized every other summer.  They told me to choose wisely, it was either Europe or a car.  The family ’98 Jeep Grand Cherokee, aka Big Red, that my mom hated to drive to work would have to do. I felt cool, and cultured, and got to drink because they do not give a flying fuck over there ( I was still 17, not technically “legal” in most of the places we went).  We had this super hot tour guide that went clubbing with us in Venice.  I got lost in Berlin for 4  hours walking in the opposite direction of the land mark I was trying to get to.   My friends and I got followed by a guy with a knife in Prague.  It was nothing short of magical.

Unfortunately my days of gallivanting through Europe are limited.  I’ve jetted off (read:  rammed into a seat in coach stuck behind one of the most awful gashes of all time.  I’m not exaggerating.  Essex Snookie, her matted synthetic extensions, and shit faced bae almost got detained at landing because she was being a cunt punter to the poor mom with the crying baby in front of her #classy) to the United Kingdom a few times to see my boyfriend’s family.  If he so happens to have a conference in Paris and offers to pay for half of my ticket, so be it.  And if our friends in Berlin offer their extra room to us for a weekend, who am I to say no?

I hate touristy shit.  Who doesn’t these days.  Part of being a Millennial is to be a little too cool for school and go off the beaten path until its beaten to death.  Then go back on it again ironically and pretend not to enjoy yourself.  But I digress.  I love going to a city where I know someone who lives there.  It gives them an excuse to see a sight they’ve been putting off, and it gives me a chance to see a side of a place I probably wouldn’t have found on my own.  For instance, instead of going to some German tourist trap for dinner in Berlin, we went to this insane Israeli joint where I had THE best hummus bowl of my goddamn life.  My boyfriend took me to a kebab place in Manchester he frequented in college and I thought I was going to lose my damn mind it was so good.  Going to New York to see my cousin is fun because it gives her a chance to see an art exhibition she had been meaning to go to and I get to get drunk at a new bar.  Last time it was in East Harlem. We thought we were going to midnight brunch.  Turns out there is a basement club that we didn’t know we were invited to.  I don’t remember the cab ride home.

The best thing I can say about traveling is don’t turn your nose up at an opportunity to see a new place.  Don’t be basic.  Be fabulous, be weird.

A Weirdo’s Podcast Starter Pack

I love a good podcast. It’s like having interesting people in your house that have interesting stories and you don’t have to interact with them or contribute to the conversation.  Podcasts do not care how many classes of Rose or gin and tonics I’ve had, Podcasts don’t care where I take them, and if I get bored of one, there’s always another in the pipe.

My podcast love affair started with This American Life hosted by Ira Glass, and one day I thought “I wonder if there is a less intellectually stimulating version of this”.  And off I went.  Over the last few years I have a few tiers of podcasts:  the ones that I check every now and again, and ones that I subscribe to, and the ones a binge hard on.  These are the binge worthy ones, people.

  1.  The Bitch Bible
  • How do I love thee Bitch, let me cunt the ways.  Jackie Schimmel’s blog turned podcast spoke to me right from her confessional in the bathroom stall at temple (read 4 star hotel in southern California) during Rosh Hashanah.  A fellow lover of the Real Housewives and Bachelor Nation, her reviews of the shows are creative and unique with out coming off as forced or pretentious.  And that’s just the tip the sequined, martini sipping iceberg.

2.  How Did This Get Made

  • Have you ever seen a movie and wondered who the hell green lighted this plot hole riddled polished turd?  Jason Mantzoukas, Paul Sheer, and, June Diane Raphael- who you might recognize from The League and Grace and Frankie- recap, review, and reveal all things terrible inexplicable movies.  You’ll actually know who their guests are, and their live shows have a little extra bonus with audience participation.

3.  My Favorite Murder

  • Do you have a favorite true crime murder?  Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark have 29 weeks and counting of two true murders a week, and each week has a theme.  I love a good theme, especially patricide cannibalism.  They also have a great Twitter and Instagram account for your lurking enjoyment.  If you have a hometown murder, they want to hear about it and they might share it on the show.  You’ll feel like your hanging out with your two weirdest girlfriends telling you stories that only the fabulous and weird will appreciate.

4.  Straight Up With Stassi

  • THIS. IS. EVERYTHING.  Don’t let the blonde hair and reality star status fool you, Stassi Schroeder is indeed a fabulous weirdo.  Homegirl was in the market for a murder house in Los Angeles.  Her obsessions with aliens, murder, and a great manicure make for an interesting and varied podcast with guests that generally include her main friend and family base.  She talks about getting drunk and nearly arrested at Disney Land with her mom, and has a conversation with her best friend about alien regression genealogy.  If the podcast isn’t enough for you, catch her on Vanderpump Rules on Bravo (or Hulu Plus if you’re a plebe like me).

5.  Sawbones: A Marital Tour of Misguided Medicine

  • We’re gonna take a left turn into the nerdy side of things.  Being a nurse, I have a genuine interest in what the fuck people thought, and still think, are legit medical.  Sometimes, they’ll cover a person in history, but mostly they’ll dissect different cure-alls that have been popular through the ages.  Justin McElroy and Dr. Sydnee McElroy have a great banter, she being a real doctor and he being a real podcaster.  It’s a great mildly interesting ear wig, that will get you to LOL once or twice while doing dishes or putting away laundry.

6.  Lizard People

  • If you love conspiracy theories held together by shoe strings and explained by people that don’t actually believe them, Lizard People is the podcast for you.  From Katy Perry actually being JonBenet Ramsey to The Bealtes being made up of clones, Katelyn Hempstead and her friends explain conspiracy theories that you never knew you needed to know about.

7.  Astonishing Legends

  • Spooky first hand accounts, morbid history, and explanations of the creepy paranormal, Astonishing Legends will send a shiver up your spine and leaving you feeling a little smarter.  I highly recommend listening to the episode “Shadow People” driving alone at night in the middle of no where or in your basement with the lights off.

8.  Faculty of Horror

  • Bitches be smart, bitches make you feel smart.  Andrea Subissati and Alexandra West are two super smart weirdos that will help you get your nerd on with an academic look at horror films, and unlike lectures in college, you won’t get the urge to whip out the old iPhone and start scrolling Pinterest.  They take a look at the good, the bad, and the ugly.  You’ll feel like a strong independent female who don’t need NO man to fight off the zombies.  On that note, here’s a fun game:  take a shot whenever they say the word “problematic”.

9.  SexyFit

  • Sometimes in order to feel fabulous, a weirdo likes to tighten it up.  Zlata Sushchik will CHANGE YOUR DAMN LIFE by walking you through how to track by macro nutrients instead of calories, have you hear from some fabulous guests with intriguing back stories, and tell you about her crazy journey from being Miss Teen Alaska, to fitness competitor, to bad lady boss who will help you change your body and your outlook.  We may be weird, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be SexyFit while letting our freak flag fly.

10. Welcome to Night Vale

  • The piece de resistance.  The weird of weird.  The most fabulous radio host and his adorable scientist boyfriend and the little desert town he loves.  Welcome to Night Vale.  Actual five headed dragons, a dog park that you’re not supposed to acknowledge, hooded figures, a vaguely menacing government agency.  I can’t.  I love.  Cecil’s calm pleasant voice will guide you through the on goings of this little town and make you want to move there ASAP.  You’ll be creeped out and in love.  At the end of the first season you’ll be glad to know that there is a sketchy faceless old woman that lives in your house, and she’s running for mayor.

All of the podcasts on the Fabulous Weirdo’s Podcast Starter pack are available on iTunes, Stitcher, or where ever you get your pods.   All of them are free of charge too.  I have never actually encountered a whole podcast series that costs money…but I hear they’re out there.  Just avoid them.  The best things in life are free.

Happy listening.  Stay fabulous, stay weird.