Author Archives: lonniegabg

About lonniegabg

I have an affinity for all things out of the ordinary. Film is my passion and it's impossible for me to choose my favorite movie. I also love reality TV and will always have a place in my heart for the Parent Trap version of Lindsay Lohan.

Flashback…Tuesday?

Standard

I realize that Taylor Swift feels miserable and magical at the age of 22, and I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty damn sure that’s how I felt in 7th grade.

If you read last week’s post, you know that the bar-mitzvah circuit was my prime and I wasn’t kidding.

My social life was at the pinnacle of perfection…and it’s been downhill from there.

For all you non-Jewish readers, (which I’m sure is like, a whopping three of you) allow me to explain.

Picture a world in which you had parties every weekend for an entire year, and yes, you had to go to every party whether you liked it or not.

The only legitimate excuse was either a death or conflicting bar/ bat mitzvahs—the ultimate nightmare; it was part of the Bar/ Bat Mitzvah code.

These parties weren’t just get togethers with friends and family—Oh no. They were much, much worse.

“Worse?” you ask.

Yes. Worse.

These parties were themed.

Dolce & Alana will live on!

Dolce & Alana will live on!

Cooking, baseball, basketball, animal, music, and 60’s—the list goes on and on.

Mine was fashion and appropriately titled, “Dolce & Alana”.

Lets take a trip down memory lane, shall we?

A few months out, a rather heavy invitation arrives in your mailbox. You subconsciously judge the invite on color-scheme, paper, and font. Flash forward to the Saturday of the big event. You somehow make it through the service and gorge yourself at the catered brunch and decide that, because everyone saw you in your stellar Delia’s outfit last weekend, you obviously need something new in fear of committing the dreadful sin of outfit repetition. So, you and your posse beg your moms to drive you to the mall, where she begrudgingly hands over a whopping $20. Three hours and a new ensemble later, it’s time to get ready. You beg your chauffeur (aka your mom) to not take you to the party on time.

“I have to be there fashionably late, mom!” you plead.

“Fashionably late? It’s a Bar-mitzvah party.”

Some parents just don’t understand.

30 minutes late, you and your herd finally arrive at the party. Appetizers are being served and the green screen has just opened up.

You rock those freebie space glasses.

You rock those freebie space glasses.

Jogging anyone’s memory? My Jew senses are practically tingling.

It’s now about 8PM and the parents are eating dinner as you and your friends are “dancing”. All of a sudden you hear the music change from Avril Lavigne’s, Girlfriend, to Beyonce’s, Irreplaceable.

“Snoooooooow Baaaaaaaaaaall” you hear the DJ say.

Your heart sinks and you jerk your head to meet the gaze of your crush.

Everyone forms a circle and the bar or bat mitzvah is forcibly thrown in to the centre of the circle, where he or she silently whimpers from embarrassment. Then, the hormones kick in and everyone starts dancing.

No, I do not mean grinding. Snowballs meant swaying back and forth with your arms on his shoulders and his on your waist and absolutely NO eye contact.

Grinding was only acceptable when:

  1. Your parents were not there.
  2. You weren’t good friends with the family.
  3. You had no shame.

Phew. Snowball is over.

You awkwardly shuffle back to your posse when you catch a whiff of chicken strips.

After you eat you dinner, the shoes come off and it’s time to get a little crazy.

That’s right. It’s time for the games.

POI: I was the Memphis, Tennessee’s resident Coke & Pepsi champ (no big deal)

I've got my game face on and I'm ready to DOMINATE.

I’ve got my game face on and I’m ready to DOMINATE.

Once every pubescent in the general vicinity was collectively sweaty, it was time for the pies-de-resistance—the slide show. Armed with signature freebies and a hefty $5 gift card to Starbucks that you won from the limbo competition you plopped yourself down in front of the screen and craned your neck upwards. This was your chance to see if you were REALLY a friend of the bar or bat- mitzvah.

One picture? Friends. Three pictures? You were practically family.

Two more hours and hava nagila later and you feel your clamshell dinosaur phone buzzing. The party has officially ended.

You run out to your carpool clad in a new pair of monogramed flannel boxers that read something along the lines of, “I partied my pants off at _______ Bar Mitzvah!” and hoarsely tell whoever is driving about the drama of the night. You may not have left with a $5 gift card to Claire’s this time, but hey—there’s always next Saturday.

Advertisements

Over Used: Awkward

Standard

‘Awkward’ as defined by my MacBook Pro’s trusty Mission Control dictionary: adjective—causing or feeling embarrassment or inconvenience; not smooth or graceful; uncomfortable or abnormal.

Yep, that pretty much does it.

Awkward phases—I like to think—are much like men: can’t live with ‘em; can’t live with out ‘em

Usually occurring between middle school and high school, the awkward phase is a necessity for any growing being.

I really should have seen it coming.

I was 12 years old, just out of my chubby phase, and to be honest, was practically akin to an anglerfish, perpetually trapped in the Mariana’s Trench of awkward.

Oh, the signature "Alana awkward phase head tilt". POI: I still own that shirt

Oh, the signature “Alana awkward phase head tilt”.
POI: I still own that shirt

Smack between the years of Limited Too, Delia’s, and the ever popular and slightly terrifying, Hollister, this was my time to shine

These were also the years of the “Bar Mitzvah Circuit” – a coveted span of a year or two when Jews ultimately reach their peak.

To be frank, I almost feel bad for those who were unfortunate enough to not go through an awkward phase.

Acne, uni-brows, man boobs, and glasses are character builders, dang it!

We grew, we experimented, and although we shudder at the sight of the 12-year-old version of ourselves, the awkward phase served as the formative year(s) in which we blossomed (or in my case, uncoordinatedly transformed) into who we are today.

We (or at least I) didn’t care if that tiered peasant skirt from American Eagle looked horrific!

Judy Blume was there to guide me through the years I spent exploring the dark corners of Hollister and I loved every minute of it.

One day when I have kids, I can only hope they have the most atrocious, repugnant awkward phases ever. Bring on the highly questionable style, raging hormones, and grossly unflattering haircuts!

The Only Thing Constant Is Change

Standard

I’m back! School has been a tad crazy these past couple months and I’m only now reaching the point in the school year when I can catch a quick breath before I become a hermit and change my mailing address to that of the Perry-Castañeda Library.

Now that my little forward is out of the way, I’d like to draw your attention to an issue of utmost importance: relationships. This is not to say that I don’t like or don’t approve of relationships, this entry will serve more as an op-ed based on personal experience versus outwardly judging other people and their relationship preferences.

Let me preface this by saying that prior to coming to University, I had a wonderful boyfriend who was more than anything I could have ever imagined (we ended up dissolving the relationship about a month or two into first semester due to distance and time). But for real though, I couldn’t say a single bad thing about him.

For me, the final months in high school were sheer bliss; I was safely in to college and spent the majority of my time with my friends and then boyfriend because I knew my life would never be the same. (I also had just found out that my family decided to move back to the good ole’ U.S. of A., which only resulted in the separation being more painful.)

I recently read an article that described first semester freshman as ‘9th semester high school students’—it’s a transition period. College aint’ easy, honey; learning to think and act like a university student takes time. True to the description, I tried my hardest to cling on to the relationships I built in high school, when I should have been focusing more on forming new relationships.

Right around the time we broke up, I realized something that has carried with me to this day: the only thing constant is change. I no longer had time for two hour Skype conversations and I often found myself talking about the same mundane topics, where as we used to talk about anything and everything. What I didn’t realize then, was that he, along with my friends, and myself, were changing.

I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but something was different. We are in new cities with new people and new adventures. As time went on, it was harder to make conversation because what we shared were memories, not new experiences.

After the relationship ended, I began to truly enjoy my freshman year; I was free to do what ever I wanted, whenever I wanted. I no longer felt the need to skip parties just so I wouldn’t miss the chance to tell him good night. Suddenly, I could make my own choices without having to consider what he thought—I was changing.

Here is my advice to those who wish to continue life in their perfect high school relationship is this: Good freakin’ luck.

In all seriousness, it’s your relationship, not mine. If you think you and your significant other can power through, be my guest. Don’t expect it to be easy. Try it out! See how you do. Relationships aren’t for everybody, but that’s not to say it doesn’t work!

So, here I am, still single (and enjoying every minute of it, duh), with only one month until I complete my freshman year. I can safely say I have made it through my 9th semester and have shed my high school self.

Occasionally I’ll glance back and some of the early messages he and I exchanged while we were dating. Sure, we romanticize our high school relationships, and hope they last forever, but hey, life happens—it’s all part of the fun.

A Nocturnal Out Of Her Element

Standard

If you haven’t guessed from title, I’m in uni—University of Texas to be exact. With that being said, I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m nocturnal.

What college students’ eyes don’t tear up when the first light of day hits their red (and often bagged) eyes?

However, like any college student, I do enjoy some elements of that dreadful time you civilians tend to call **wince** the morning.

Alana’s list of semi-tolerable aspects of mornings

  • Coffee- Mmmmm. How can one not like coffee? It’s essentially over priced, hot caffeinated happiness, wrapped up in a disposable cup ready to be consumed by nocturnals all around the world. (If it has a Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Starbucks, or Blenz logo on it, even better.)

The blog, Stuff White People Like, said it best: “I promise you that the first person at your school to drink coffee was a white person. You could kind of tell they didn’t enjoy it, but they did it anyways until they liked it – like cigarettes.”

Coffee. Awesome.

  • Brunch- (Sorry, mom. I’ve never been a breakfast person. But if I wake up at 11, that makes my first meal breakfast…right?). For my family, brunch always meant Sunday mornings (and by mornings, I mean at 12pm) over at the grandparent’s house. The food was always the same: bagels, eggs, blintz casserole, fruit, and fresh juice.

Tell me this does not sound amazing: One everything bagel (obviously from a Jewish bagelry), toasted twice, cut in to 4ths, with tomato, avocado, lox, and a smidge of onion. Or if you’re not in to a s#!+ ton of carbs first thing in the morning, a two egg, one egg white Denver omelette with hash-browns, toast and fresh fruit sounds equally as delightful.

Brunch was made for the nocturnals. Who in their right mind wants to wake up and immediately dive in to lunch? That’s right. Nobody.

Brunch, my friends, is the answer to all of your worries.

_______________________________

… I spent at least twenty minutes trying to come up with a list of semi-decent aspects of the morning, and besides food, jack nothing came to mind. Whoops.

Sorry I’m not sorry, early risers. If you can think of anything remotely positive about that ungodly span of time between the hours of 6am and 12pm, be my guest.

I speak on behalf of the nocturnals out there when I say that night-time is our time to shine.

This One’s For the Girls.

Standard

As I sit in my semi-clean dorm room on a Sunday night (well, morning), I contemplate my clothing options for the following day.

While this doesn’t happen every night, I try to make a conscious effort to make sure that I don’t look completely homeless when I walk out of my dorm.

And no, I have yet to bust out the sweats in public…besides in the library that is.

Most people don’t understand that after wearing a strict, Gossip Girl-esque uniform for the past five years, I, along with many like minded people, get a little fatoosted* when given the freedom to pick out my own clothes.

This was my life for five long years. Clearly I was a tad excited to go to Texas. Hook em!

This was my life for five long years. And yes, I’m aware my skirt was unreasonably short.  Clearly I was a tad excited to go to Texas. Hook em!

Hell, I get worked up just thinking about which of my three pairs of neutral colored, Rainbow flip flops to wear!

Jeans? Sweaters? Shirts? Shoes? Shorts? Tanks? Dresses?

The options are endless.

However, if you are a sorority girl at U.T., you only have one option: norts*, oversized frat t-shirt or tank (frockets* are a must), mid-calf white, ribbed socks, and Nike free-runs.  Oh, and if you’re feeling really stylish, you might as well bust out your Ralph Lauren baseball hat.

If that doesn’t scream “top of the line fashion”, I don’t know what does.

I wonder who was the brilliant individual who decided that ensemble was legitimately cute.

Austin is supposed to be one of the coolest and most unique cities in the entire U.S.. I mean, come on, Austin’s slogan is, “Keep Austin Weird”.

Why must people conform to such fashion atrocities? What happened to being unique and making a statement? College is supposed to be about finding yourself, not blending in with the masses.

If going to an all girls’ high school taught me anything, it taught me to cherish the years where I have the complete freedom to pick out whatever my heart desires to wear. Because let’s face it, soon enough, we’ll all be rocking the “business casual” look on the daily.

And trust me, as adorable as grey, blue, and black pants suits are, I’d much rather have the option of wearing my Austin City Limits t-shirt and jean shorts.

So, fellow fashionistas, I’ll leave you with this:

I, Alana, the sorority girl, triple-dog-dare you to wear something new instead of the same old same old. Be different! Take a risk! In a city whose slogan is “Keep Austin Weird”, I doubt your outfit of choice will cost you any friends.

No guarantees on that last part, but what ever, you get my drift.

*Fatoosted: Immensely frustrated (Yiddish)

*Norts: Nike Shorts (I know, I didn’t know it was abbreviated either)

*Frockets: Front + Pocket = Frocket

Throwback Thursday

Standard

#tbt #throwbackthursday #throwbackthurs #TBT

What ever you call it, it’s that time of week again, folks. It’s Throwback Thursday.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been waiting all week to see another picture of what you looked like during your awkward stage. As if last week’s picture of you slow dancing with your your “camp boyfriend” wasn’t sufficient enough, this week’s picture of you flashing the peace sign at your Britney Spears themed birthday party will surely take the cake. I realize how hard it must have been to take the time to dig through years of photos and private albums on Facebook to find the perfect TBT picture.

What an ideal TBT should look like: a perfect balance of sass and awkwardness

What an ideal TBT should look like: a perfect balance of sass and awkwardness

I appreciate your braces, flat chest, and acne. I really do—Girlscout’s honor.

While I’m not entirely sure when exactly Throwback Thursday started, I imagine it went something like this: a couple months ago, a cool kid decided to show off his or her semi-adorable childhood pictures and thought to him/ herself when captioning said photo, “Golly, I love alliterations. #throwbackthursday it is!” Then, by the grace of god (or by the hundreds of likes kids these days get), the trend of #throwbackthursday spread like lice in a kindergarten class.

Nowadays, the really cool kids simply hashtag, “#tbt”

One hashtag. No caption.

Wow. Cool.

Recently, I’ve noticed people are abusing the Throwback Thursday trend. To combat against this blasphemy, I’ve made a list of simple #TBT rules to follow.

  1. Throwbacks must be at least two years before the current date…TBT is not meant for you to bring back pictures from this year’s new years eve. Trust me, nobody wants to revisit that quite yet—too soon my friend, too soon.
  2. Please, for the love of all that’s good and kind in this world, NO landscape pictures from that vacation you took years back. “wish i was in france right now #tbt”…………no
  3. One Throwback Thursday picture per week. End of story.

Now, my friends, go forth and throwback ‘til your heart’s content. I won’t judge.

While you’re thumbing through piles of pictures, here’s my 90’s playlist to put you in Throwback Thursday mood.

Austin City Limits Music Festival

Standard

Token ACL Picture Frame Shot

Ah, Austin City Limits: the only weekend where even the frattiest of frat boys and the preppiest of preps can dress like complete and utter hipsters and get away with it.

ACL Music Festival is comparable to other huge festivals such as Coachella, Lollapalooza, and Sasquatch—all larger than life, all hip as can be.

While most hipsters chose to spend around $300 give-or-take to enjoy a weekend of insane music and overpriced food, I chose the other route. You see, the people who scheduled TX/OU weekend, the biggest weekend in UT sports, and ACL clearly had some sort of spontaneous brain aneurism while choosing the dates because both major events were scheduled on the same weekend (This year, however, ACL is two weekends long, which avoids this problem. Snaps for you, ACL people. Snaps for you.)

Because the majority of UT students were in Dallas for the big game, I decided to see if I could weasel my way in to the festival for all three days come hell or high water. Luckily for me, one of the top tier sororities had a booth at ACL and due to the lack of students in Austin, the job was open to anyone in the Greek system, aka: me.

I signed up not knowing what I was getting myself in to and the next day I showed up bright and early to Zilker Park ready to complete any job that came my way.

Much to my surprise, the whole team kicked off each shift with an overflowing shot of whiskey—my kind of team.

They told me briefly over the phone that I would be working one of the food booths, but they neglected to tell me that I’d be selling exotic sausages. Exotic meaning Elk/ beehive and rattlesnake/ rabbit. And yes, I tried both.

I couldn’t tell you how many times people asked me what beehive was.

All I can say is it’s a good thing I’m not vegetarian.

After two days of work, I decided that I would actually bite the bullet and actually go to the festival.

BEST decision.

I saw the Civil Wars, Iggy Pop, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers front row. I’m just saying, watching Iggy frolic across the stage was a slight step above frightening. I took enough pictures to last me a life time and by the end of the day, was not only covered in mud, but had a Chaco tan that ended up lasting me through December.

All in all, successful weekend.