Monthly Archives: September 2012
How far will the media go?
We live in a world where we are told fat is bad. Where even the thinnest women are still photo shopped.
We live in a world where we constantly worry if our husbands will leave us for someone skinnier or prettier, so we go to extreme measures in order to seem more appealing.
We live in a world where it takes a celebrity to come out about an eating disorder, which she has been struggling with for years, in order to gain media attention.
In order for other people to realize they are not alone.
In order for the world to know there is someone out there who is just like them who will listen.
How far will the media go?
Eating disorders are a major public health problem in our society today. Since World War 2, the mass media has increasingly held a higher standard towards women and their body image. There is a pressure put onto women to obtain the ideal image of “perfection”, which is nearly impossible to achieve.
The truth of the matter is women’s bodies’ change, as they get older. They fluctuate normally from water weight, which can easily be gained or lost in a matter of days or weeks.
This past week, Lady Gaga opened up about an eating disorder she has been struggling with for years, after she was ridiculed by The Sun, in an article headlined Porker Face, for showing a little “weight gain”.
Who are we trying to please, the media? I seriously want to see what those people writing these articles look like… I mean they are hiding behind a computer screen for a reason. Why do we let “them” tell us what is attractive or not? Why do we care?
I mean come on… is that really what our society should be focusing on right now? Who cares if Lady Gaga, who is normally on a strict diet, wants to go out, drink and * gasp * eat a cheeseburger once in a while…
This past week, Lady Gaga, tweeted a link to Caroline Rothstein’s video, where she performs her poem titled “fat”.
Rothstein is a New York City-based writer, performer, and eating disorder recovery advocate, who grew up in Wilmette, a suburb of Chicago. She expresses her 10-year struggle with eating disorders, stating how “she used to daydream about eating dinner without wanting to kill herself”, where she “played Russian Roulette with her esophagus”, eventually resulting in stomach ulcers, popped blood vessels and missing tooth enamel.
Gaga was ridiculed for not only this but also her weight gain. Honestly, though, this is what the media forces upon people. How far will the media go? When will they stop? Will they finally be happy once everyone is so thin they die?
It is estimated one thousand, plus, women die every year from anorexia and as many as one in ten college women suffer from a clinical or nearly clinical eating disorder, including 5.1% who suffer from bulimia nervosa.
Eating disorders is an incredibly delicate topic, which is why it needs to be publicized. Growing up in Chicago, it was rare to find someone who did not have an eating disorder. This is not to say that everyone was anorexic or had bulimia; but, going to a school where maybe 2 people in each class were over 150 pounds, there was a lot of pressure put on both genders to be thin.
Gaga makes people believe and realize they can be strong no matter who they are. Her page, A Body Revolution 2013, encourages fans to embrace and share their flaws. Someone posting a picture online of themselves, who would normally be perceived as “fat”, is receiving encouraging words from millions across the world telling them “don’t hide yourself in regret, just love yourself and you’re set”.
Is this her way of fighting back against the media for scrutinizing her? Or is she taking on the responsibility of being the voice for those millions who think they are trapped and alone in the battle?
I’m not one to go into an election with a preset notion about which side I’m for or against. I would rather see what both parties have to offer and then make my final decision. Mitt Romney has, much like Sarah Palin, been ridiculed for many things he has said. I get so mad because he just makes it so frustratingly hard to not laugh at some of things he says. I mean… I’m sure he’s a nice guy and all, and would make a great president, but come on… GIVE ME SOMETHING…. Semi-smart… so I don’t think you’re a complete idiot.
Okay, so maybe I’m being a little harsh… I say a lot of ridiculous things that I wouldn’t want people to take me seriously from… but then again, I’m not running for presidency. I mean maybe he is just joking… in a weird way that really no one understands except him… I’ll let you decide for yourself…
“When you have a fire in an aircraft, there’s no place to go, exactly, there’s no — and you can’t find any oxygen from outside the aircraft to get in the aircraft, because the windows don’t open. I don’t know why they don’t do that. It’s a real problem.” – Mitt Romney
After watching this video, however, I realized that much of what he said here, as well as the tone of his voice, makes me realize that he is, in fact, joking… I think? Reading what Mr. Romney said and listening to it, are two different things. I find that this happens a lot these days when it comes to social media or texting/emailing. Someone who doesn’t know you may not know the tone you are trying to use.
I think the problems with presidential elections are that A: the media over exaggerates everything and will do anything to find a way to make you look bad; and B: you never know if what you say will be taken in the wrong way or out of context. Its almost as if this whole thing is a total joke… Like maybe they should just wear paper bags over their heads or put duct tape on their mouths any time they are in public…
Really… then again… maybe I’m wrong and he is being serious. I doubt he would joke about his wife being in a plane accident… either way; the mockery on the Internet has been quite entertaining because of it…
NSIDE Austin strives to be highly creative, focused and sophisticated, while using their business resource to inspire, educate and grow throughout the Austin community. NSIDE Austin is a bi-monthly magazine publication that focuses not only on the medical and business industries, but also emphasizes fashion, beauty, music, dining and wellness throughout the Austin area. NSIDE Austin prides itself on hosting monthly mixers, which benefit and raise money for well-known non-profits in the community, recently focusing on the Hispanic Scholarship Consortium (HSC) and Komen Austin.
Friday, September 28, NSIDE Magazine hosted a medical mixer, at The W hotel, in honor of Dr. Moossy (on the cover of last month’s issue) that benefitted Komen Austin.
TRACE provided light appetizers, which consisted of antipasti plates that were loaded with anything from meats and cheeses to crostini’s with jam, figs and nuts. Bowls of popcorn, with what tasted like truffle butter, were also a crowd favorite. I never thought there would be a classy way to have popcorn at an event, but leave it to TRACE to pull it off.
Having an event during happy hour is always a crowd pleaser, especially with The W’s pricy drink menu. However, if you had a chance to arrive at the mixer early, complementary drinks were provided by Z Tequila, which took you out of The Record Room’s dark ambiance all the way to Mexico, even if it were only for a few seconds.
With a room filled with couches and pillows, it’s hard to not cozy up to the fire and network while perusing through NSIDE’s latest issue. All in all, the event had a great turnout and seemed to be a hit within Austin’s elite, who came dressed in their best cocktail attire.
So, you see, there is this little thing I like to call College, which consumes my life 9 out of 12 months every year. I mean it has its perks. You get to meet people, and be social… I guess… you go to those things called parties… where you meet more people. Basically, its just this big place where you meet people non stop and really just don’t remember their names… but, you also have to stay up until, well, always, because you never get sleep.
I quite honestly like to sleep. It’s actually something I LOVE to do… just wish I got more of it, you know? Who needs sleep, though, right? Wrong. I got no sleep at all this week… it was terrible… no, worse than terrible (insert word worse than terrible).
So why did I get no sleep, you ask? Well… my professors must love me SO much that they decide to give me unmanageable amounts of work, with humanly unheard of deadlines, where its physically impossible to sleep in order to get everything in on time… it takes over my life… literally… anyways… What ever happened to those articles that told us we NEED sleep in order to be academically successful? Normally I wouldn’t be such an insomniac or walking zombie; but, at this point, I really just have no other choice.
This is why I love Thursdays…I’m Free At Last… It’s seriously my favorite day of the week. I know it should probably be Friday, but I only have class Monday through Thursday… so you see my point… Thursdays are technically the start to my weekend. Before I start my weekend… I will kindly take the time to let you know about some of my personal favorite happy hour specials going on tonight in Austin… Just remember… 1:30 AM Peckerheads never fails.
$1 Well Drinks ALL Night
$1 Domestic bottles
$2 Import bottles
$2.50 U Call Its til 11 PM
$2 Any Bud Product
$2 World Famous Dizzy Rooster Jell-O shots
$3 Wells All Night
$3 Bomb Hideous/Jager/Tuaca/All Bacardi Flavors
$1 Tall Boys
One of my favorite things in this world is food. During the day, I eat… at night, I eat… and when I’m home doing homework, I, of course, have the food network on 24/7. Honestly, how many of you can say that you don’t like eating… I mean unless you just totally hate food… and in that case… well, I’m sorry.
Since I’m a broke college student and all, I don’t have the luxury of going out to eat all the time, so instead I’ve found this love for cooking. That isn’t to say that I’ve never cooked before and that I am completely incapable of doing so, unlike my sister, but every now and then I find a day where I pretend that I’m an amazing chef… I find that I have so many friends on days like these… weird, I know…
Any who… I know I should be studying and all, but sometimes my computer just calls to me… OPEN ME… it’s almost like it has this unnatural power over me where I just can’t seem to say no. So, naturally, I open my laptop where I find myself on other blogging sites, mainly ones that revolve around food.
Two of my favorite sites, that I visit at least once a day… sometimes more, are
I mean seriously, these things just shouldn’t exist. Once I open these sites, I’m in a complete trance. I can’t seem to close the web browser… I really just have no idea how it happens… it’s truly magical. As soon as you’re there, these pictures pop up, nearly out of the page. Its like, if you put your tongue to the computer screen you can taste the food… almost… not like I do that or anything… maybe…
I was really craving doughnuts today… maybe it was because I live literally right next to Krispy Kreme and can see it outside of my window… but decided I didn’t want to give in and today would be the perfect day to have something homemade. So I have this folder on my desktop with over 100 recipes in it… its kind of bad. Just like some people collect stamps or have these things called hobbies or whatever… well I collect recipes. So naturally, I go to open my folder and I’m scrolling through it and remember I saved this recipe for Cinnamon and Sugar Ricotta Fritters that I told myself I would try sooner or later.
Well let me tell you… it was seriously the best decision I have EVER made… plus it took less than an hour to make, so really you have no excuse to not try it. I know, ricotta in a doughnut you may ask… its weird right? I thought so too… but no… it is the lightest, fluffiest thing I have ever had. So for all of you out there who are too worried to consume any calories… just think of it as eating air… but better.
Here is the recipe that I “stole” from A Cozy Kitchen… I made one batch covered with cinnamon and sugar and the other I covered in powdered sugar… either way its delicious:
3 large eggs
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon McCormick Gourmet pure vanilla extract
1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 cup white granulated sugar
4 tablespoons McCormick ground cinnamon
1. In a cast iron skillet (or saucepan), heat 2 inches of vegetable oil to 350˚F. Line a large baking sheet with a few layers of paper towels and set near the saucepan.
2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together the eggs, granulated sugar and vanilla; add the ricotta and beat until smooth. In another bowl, mix the flour and baking powder. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and mix until just combined.
3. Add sugar and cinnamon to a plate and toss. Place near the stove, as you’re going to want to toss the hot doughnuts in the mixture.
4. Using a small ice cream scoop or 2 teaspoons, slide 8 walnut-size rounds of batter into the hot oil. Fry over moderate heat until golden brown all over and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fritters to the paper towels to drain. Immediately roll them in to the cinnamon and sugar mixture and serve. Continue frying the remaining fritters in batches of 8.
Recipe adapted from Gale Gand
Yields 16 fritters
Unless you have no idea how this whole social media thing works, but chances are if you’re reading this you probably do, then you’ve seen, Korean pop sensation, PSY’s highly eccentric and entertaining “Gangnam Style” video… you’ve also probably stood in front of a mirror while trying to master his fast-paced, highly sexual, horse riding dance…and if you haven’t… well… knock yourself out.
Yes… the video is pretty much ridiculous… I mean come on, these people are riding around pretending to be horses… but again… unless you have no idea how to use this great thing called the internet, you wouldn’t know that “Gangnam Style” is a parody in and of itself.
With over 250 million views, and counting, PSY pushes the cultural boundaries of Seoul, Korea’s richest, most eccentric, district, Gangnam, in a massively entertaining way.
For years eastern music artists have had the most difficult time making it mainstream in our western society… I mean I don’t see how… all they really had to do was put on some flashy, neon, clothes and dance around pretending to ride a horse all while making hand motions in mid air as if you were spanking someone. PSY… being the genius as he is… realized that in the US… *ding ding*… you guessed it…sex sells…. shocker there. He clearly used this to his advantage while also knowing that chances were we wouldn’t understand Korean… I mean how rude… but hey, any guy that can outsmart an American is A-okay in my book.
Aside from PSY’s ostentatious appearance, I really just don’t think his life is all that. Honestly… why would you want to sit next to a sweaty guy in a sauna, get down with some elders in a tourist bus or swim in a pool?
As I mentioned before, “Gangnam Style” is a parody and as with any catchy song, you can always count on College students to make their own videos showing how our lives are clearly better than everyone else’s…
Now this is what I’m talking about… The “Burnt Orange Tailgating Crew” should be the ones making millions… not this guy PSY, who is clearly trying to one up us on the amount we spend as consumers… but really… I know The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, New Jersey, New York and Orange County could trump his so-called “Gangnam” lifestyle any day.
PSY makes it seem as if he has this lavish lifestyle… but who walks past a group of girls doing yoga and doesn’t do anything… you’re going to have to do a little better than that if you’re going to compete with us…at least UT girls grind all up on those frat daddies…I think we can clearly see who won this dance off.
Some might think that these UT students have this whole parody wrong… but oh no… it is so right. Who wouldn’t want to consume an immense amount of beer… not to mention doing a keg stand before a football game?
All satire aside… maybe looking a little deeper into the meaning behind “Gangnam Style” will do us some good. Although both videos clearly represent different cultures, the depiction of how much each society consumes is one and the same.
Both videos are over-the-top, but maybe that’s what we need… a kick in the face…or some weird dance resembling horses… in order to get a message across. Maybe we don’t need to have the most valuable things or drink until we puke in order to fit in. Some might say that PSY is a ridiculous moron… or UT students are giving themselves a bad reputation; however, if you take a little time, on this great thing called the Internet, you’ll realize that you can still have a great time sitting alone on a beach, in PSY’s case, or resting your head on your buddy’s shoulder in front of a TV at a UT tailgate. We could all benefit from trying to control how much the media brainwashes us by consuming a little less and maybe go back to the days when you couldn’t wait to play outside with your dog as soon as you got home from school, instead of playing video games… but hey, what do I know… I’m just another broke college student trying to get by in life…
Either way, both videos are quiet entertaining… so if you’re looking for a way to procrastinate or just to have a great laugh, I would suggest watching these videos over and over again.. or maybe just make your own parody and see how viral it goes.
Do you ever look around, I mean really look around, and notice how many hipsters there really are?
I’ll be walking down the street… just minding my own business…and then it hits me… like a ton of bricks… plaid shirts, skinny jeans, big-rimmed glasses… EVERYWHERE.
There is nowhere to hide. If there is one thing a hipster is good at…it’s making you question everything you ever thought was trendy, delicious or fabulous.
Have you ever walked past a group of people and thought to yourself, “they’re judging and talking about me”, but they really probably weren’t?
Well in this case they definitely were.
Whether you are in line at Starbucks, at a restaurant or shopping at a non-thrift store… it’s as if you did something wrong even if you didn’t. Your hair is wrong, your clothes are wrong… pretty much your life is basically just wrong.
It’s like there is this alternate universe they live in where everything we do as students or corporate America is completely lame and just shouldn’t exist. Yet, we are all suddenly yearning to live in the areas they live in and dine at the restaurants they deem acceptable.
I mean, honestly, when did it become normal for the 20-year old Audi driving corporate girl to worry about what a Goodwill sweater, tight jeaned, converse wearing guy deems acceptable?
Sometimes I think this is all in my head, so I decided to do some research on this… you know… just to make sure I wasn’t slowly entering the Twilight Zone.
The Huffington Post recently had an article on the top 10 hipster neighborhoods in the US and, thankfully, both Chicago and Austin made this list… Chicago coming in at #4 and East Austin at #7. http://huff.to/Ujk66Y
So I continued my search on these people called “hipsters” just to… you know… figure out who they were and what they wanted from us “non hipsters”.
I came across an article on Wikipedia and found some tips on how to be a hipster, which I think helps explain them quite well… And I mean… now that Libraries are disappearing by the minute, it’s really the only reliable source for me to get my information from… but, really…
In case you think you run into a hipster but aren’t quite sure… or you want to join their “secret club” because you are too lazy to come up with your own style…here are some tips:
1. Pretend you’re poor… for some reason Hipsters like to come off as having no money (Goodwill is the new Nordstrom)
2. Stock up on skinny jeans… make sure they are EXTRA skinny (so tight you can see it all…really it’s quite unnecessary)
3. Be very sarcastic and avoid answering questions directly… also be chill no matter what situation you’re put in (but not chill in the normal chill way…chill as in “I am a hipster so no matter what you say my opinion trumps kind of way)
4. Listen to Indie music… I know this will be hard for all you non-hipsters since you are all depressingly mainstream…
5. Get an old fixie bike instead of a car. Less money, and better for the environment (even if it’s purple, just go with it…basket? Even better…maybe even a little bell on the handle bar)
6. Hang out with other Hipsters at local coffee shops, while discussing poetry or art (or that Indie band you saw at the local coffee shop who’s lyrics are like poetry). It’ll make you look deep and super “trendy”
I felt such relief as soon as I saw this… it confirmed my prediction… there is actually this thing called “hipster”… I’m not going crazy.
For now I guess we need to just accept this is part of our society and wait for the next trend to hit us. At least we can count on the hipsters keeping good restaurants open… supporting local breweries and produce and overall just being around. If one thing is certain we will triumph and our opinions will once again matter…even if it takes a few years.
Have you ever had to catch a flight so early that you just ended up going out the night before and staying up until you had to leave for the airport…
This is the second time I’ve done this in the past two months and it’s worked out quite well for me so far.
I’m on my way to Chicago for the weekend to visit my parents and I thought it would be a genius idea for me to book my flight so that I had to be at the airport at 5:45 am to catch a 7 am flight. By the way… apparently I’m not the only one with this genius idea because the security line literally was so long that it had a line to get into the security line…. Like DOES THAT EVEN HAPPEN? Is this real life?
Anyways… See the last time I did this I booked my flight for 6 am instead of 7, and well… that was just hell. I went downtown with my friends and ended up coming back to my apartment around 3 am and needed the taxi to be at my place by 4/4:20 ish.
Let me tell you… I barely remember that day. I ended up sleeping on the plane and then going straight to lunch with my mom where I proceeded to each sushi while having a fantabulous conversation with her. I had to have been up for over 30 hours that day…
So this time, same basic plan but booked my flight for an hour later than last time just to give myself a little more time to pack… because well… I’m the queen of procrastination and I never end up packing until the last minute… why do I put myself in these situations you ask… I have no idea.
This time I didn’t get to my apartment until 3:30 am and had my alarm set for 4(ish) so I would have time to pack.
Do you ever have those moments where your body is just so tired and your limbs hurt so much that you just need to lay down? Like I don’t even need to sleep… I’ll sleep when I’m dead… I just literally needed to rest my body for a good hour before I had to get up.
You know, I really think I have the hang of this thing. 7 am flights are a good thing for me… I think I can do this. I mean I would rather go out with friends on a Thursday night… have a good time… then proceed to get on a flight at the earliest possible moment… sleep on the plane (obviously)… but really I don’t want to waste the whole day at airports… no one wants to do that… that’s really just not so fun… you know? So I really think this time is going to work out for me from now on… minus the fact that every time I do it, I end up dreading it and just want to fall asleep… but as I said… I’ll sleep when I’m dead…
For now… Its time to rest my body and catch some Zzzz’s before I land in my city… my FAVORITE city… my home… Chicago
Situation: getting blogs done…efficiently and on time…
How it turned out: I’ll let you know by the end of this
So I know we were taught as a kid not to take rides from strangers… but what if someone asks you to give them a ride? What do I do then?! Thanks mom and dad… forgot to teach me that one, didn’t you…
Here was my situation… I was supposed to be working on my blog… which was already late… and I was blogging about how I got myself into the situation of it being late:
So as I stated in my first post… I get really nervous when it comes to writing blogs… or anything for that matter… that the public will see.
I think of multiple things to write about and start writing… then I decide that I want to write about something else so I start another one… and another… and so on. I end up having so many ideas that I just can’t seem to find one that I like so I give up.
It all started last Tuesday when I decided I would get a head start on my blog that was due for this week. I had a great idea…. So I started writing.
Last Tuesday… during class: I was in my Science in Perspective class and well… I really just have no interest in that class so I took out my laptop and continued writing my blog post. I’m feeling pretty good at this point, I have a great idea AND I …
Well this is where I stopped.
This girl, who was obviously a foreign student, asked me if I could drive her to Barton Creek Mall to get her laptop fixed because she had to submit her capstone and her hard drive crashed…
I mean I was feeling pretty hesitant, because … I mean… HELLO… I had NO IDEA who she was… and I’ve never been put in that situation before.
She proceeds to say, “pleeeeeeeeeeease” in that whinny voice we all use when we want something, and gives me the puppy dog lip… so clearly I had no choice at this point… plus it gave me another reason to procrastinate writing my blog.
So now I am sitting here at the Apple Store in the Barton Creek Mall, and its not so bad. I mean, I’m just sitting here and typing this and I blend right in perfectly… with the exception of my old, ghetto, duct taped, black MacBook.
So I guess I could finish the blog post that I was typing earlier… but maybe this was just a blessing in disguise. I found something to write about AND I am getting this in on time… *winning*.
What a day…. scratch that… what a week. Well now I have my blog done, this girl isn’t even done with her appointment yet, and I will have time later to go home and pack before I go out tonight… I’m leaving for Chicago at 5 am… But I’m sure I will end up writing about that later.
Moral of the story: Do something nice every now and then… just maybe don’t follow in my footsteps and get to know the person first before you drive them somewhere.
Most of us remember exactly where we were and what we were doing the day the Twin Towers fell.
Name: Kathleen DelGrande
Age: 10 and three-quarters.
Time: 9 AM.
Location: My fourth grade classroom.
As a ten year old I thought the world was a magical place, full of wonder and innocence. On September 11, 2001, my innocence and childhood was stripped from me, as the image of people jumping to their deaths, off of the collapsing Twin Towers, would forever be engraved in my memory.
That day I saw everyone act in a way I never had before. Growing up in a household where I was never allowed to watch TV during the week, suddenly, I now had to sit and watch a slide show of horrific images that were being continuously played on every channel, it seemed like. I was scared. All I saw was smoke, and then people started running, running to find their friends and family, never stopping to look back until they reached safety. That day America became a family, a community that was willing to help each other, and a shoulder to lean on.
I picked up a pen and started writing, writing everything down until my hand hurt from squeezing it too tight. I thought that maybe the world still was a magical place, where my words would somehow lift off the page and reach someone in need. I hoped my words would empower someone, anyone, and give them even the smallest bolt of energy so they would be able to go back out there and save lives.
Since that day I’ve learned the power that words can have on people. We are beings that have used storytelling as a means of communication for centuries. As a journalist, I not only strive to report a story accurately, but also through my select choice of diction, compose a visual and emotional connection for the reader.