Baxter Bark Twice

Do as I say, never as I do

Posts Tagged ‘TGIT’

Valentine’s Day. Ew.

Posted by AllieB on February 12, 2015

Valentine’s Day is Saturday, so I guess I’ll go ahead and talk about it.

One of my strengths, I’ve always thought, is how rational I am – I’m being serious. I think it stems from my Middle Child Syndrome and need to maintain the peace, which evolved into my genuine desire to know and understand both sides of a story. Yet, in spite of this high level of enlightenment and willingness to take on opposing perspectives for the sake of journalism and assessing all the various P.o.V’s, I have a very hard time finding anything positive about this media-driven, basic betch of a “holiday.”

Let’s discuss what sux about the 14th of Feb:

~ gifts. You just wrapped up (!) the Holiday season and what’s this – you have to buy another gift?? If you’re smart you combine Saints Valentine & Nick and call it a day. But always always always no matter what get a card. You are an asshole if you don’t get your person a card on Valentine’s Day.

~ prix fixe. Maybe you’re a pretty chill couple and you’re like, “hey, let’s just do a little card swap and go out to eat somewhere, but nothing fancy, just like that XYZ place with the awesome burger.” You call up XYZ and – too bad! They’re doing a prix fixe menu on Valentine’s Day with 12 courses and wine pairings and amuse bouches and there will be a 4-string quartet playing uncomfortably close to your table and that’ll be $400pp please. Or, even worse, you aren’t in a couple and you and some buddies just want to go to XYZ and enjoy the GD burger – not today you’re not!

~ pressure. I don’t know much about this, but it seems to me that Valentine’s Day is a day where one person (A) in a relationship might have certain expectations for what the other person (B) does/says/gives to celebrate. It also seems that sometimes Person A has not clearly articulated to Person B what these expectations are, and sometimes – sometimes – it turns out that Person A and Person B are actually on very different pages…bummer. Conversely, the exact opposite could happen and Person A might get the best surprise of their entire life, so that’s nice to think about. Here’s hoping you’re in the latter scenario.

And now the good stuff insofar as there is any:

~ candy. Valentine’s Day candy is pretty good. It has nothing on Easter, but it’ll tide me over til April

~ my mom’s Sirloin Steak with Peppercorn Sauce followed by Molten Chocolate Lava Cake. A lot happened in 2012: I went to 100 weddings and moved to NYC, but I will never forget VDAY2k12.

~ flowers. Flowers are always nice to have around.

What we can glean from this breakdown is that, above all, Valentine’s Day is an equal opportunity offender and it doesn’t much care about your relationship status; Valentine’s Day is the holiday terrorist.

Here’s what I think: while the fundamental meaning of ValDizz is nice, everything else it entails is not and it’s silly to play into the hoopla generated almost single-handedly by CVS and Kay Jewelers, and what really bothers me is that the third season of House of Cards doesn’t come out until Feb 27th, not this weekend as I’d originally thought. I’m pretty sure I’d say all this even if I were coupled. Whatevs, why don’t y’all come to my place on Saturday and I’ll cook that crack-laced steak my mom makes and we can play Cards Against Humanity?? Game night!

I leave you with a poem I wrote all by myself, straight from the heart:

Roses are red

Violets are blue

Valentine’s Day.

Ew.

…well, we all have our strengths. It’s a good thing I’m so rational. Cheers!

WINE

 (Source)

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You can quote me on that

Posted by AllieB on February 5, 2015

Dryuary is a phenomenon wherein people, after a gluttonous holiday season, choose to abstain from all forms of alcohol for the month of January. I applaud this endeavor though don’t necessarily condone it. Me, I chose to participate in a different yet totally similar practice of not writing BBT for the month of January – I imagine it was equally beneficial to my health. So there was that, then the small issue of having nothing to say, and, of course: winter. Winter is the reason for everything.

garbage

 They never showed the slush and garbage on Sex and the City

I’ve recharged the batts, and I’m trying to get back in the groove – and not just re: ze blog, but life in general. I’m going to Flywheel; pasta and pizza are for Sundays only*; I am finally buying wine by the case instead of by the bottle; and I got a hair cut last night. I hate getting my hair cut and have put it off for months (next time I have ends like that please stage an intervention, or Buff, can you just say: “Allie, go get your hair cut toDAY – it looks awful have some self-respect”), and it occurred to me, as I reveled in the best scalp massage EVER, that if our world leaders had their scalps massaged daily by someone with hands like Irena, we’d all get along a whole lot better. You can quote me on that.

*Unless I feel like having pizza on a Friday, which I can do because I am a grown-up capable of making my own decisions, and I am not lactose intolerant nor do I have a gluten allergy. Pizza for everybody!

What was that about having nothing to say? Here is a selection of things that have struck my fancy lately – and, in keeping with my theme of no theme at all, this list is random AF.

~ WE WON!! To be honest, I was my own house divided watching the Superbowl – Marshawn Lynch is my new favorite person, and Gronk was starting to get on my nerves, but…in the end I stood by TB for the W.

tom and fam

Can I get arrested for this?

El Yucateca hot sauce. Thank you, MC, for introducing me to my new favorite condiment: try it on these nachos (I made them for the Superbowl and they were a hit – Tom’s not the only one who scores touchdowns!), maybe, or on your eggs. Or on your cheesy broccoli quinoa casserole. Win/Win/Win.

~ I’ve done the research; I did the legwork; I have a winner – the best mascara is: They’re Real! by Benefit. CC: ERock.

~ I’m not sure why this guy, Mark Manson, who just turned 30, is an authority on the life-lessons he churns out, but he clearly thinks he is and I guess that’s enough for me. He also doesn’t have the condescending, holier-than-thou tone you find on Elite Daily and those other websites where people basically write essays to justify their own bad decisions, and, in turn, make the reader feel like the one with shortcomings. Don’t send me any crap from Elite Daily. I especially enjoyed this piece from last month: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

Tim doesn't give af

I wanna #belikeTim

~ Empire. This show, described as a “red-hot hip-hop soap opera”, is somehow really good, and soon you’re going to be the only person not watching it, so you might as well give it a try. Except you, Mom, you can sit this one out. Also – Blacklist. I’m a little late to this party, but I am HERE and I’m all in.

~ Wrangler, the Today Show puppy, is cuter than your average puppy. He might be the cutest puppy ever.

WRANGLER

COME HERE TO ME. Join Wrangler and me on Insta: @wranglertoday

The End. And if you didn’t like today’s post please refer to the above rendering of Tim. TGIT!

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That Went Well: A Year in Review

Posted by AllieB on December 18, 2014

When it comes to making personal goals, it’s important to be realistic. I reread the post I wrote back in January that listed out what I hoped to achieve in 2014, and, I must say: I did quite well for myself. There’s that quote on Pinterest, “Shoot for Moon. Even if you miss, you’ll still be among the stars” but I prefer a more grounded and less astronomical approach, and I think we can all agree this strategy made for a pretty impressive year-end review:

1. Use my passport: Oui, je suis allé à France! (thank you Mom and Dad)

2. Be physically active for 30 mins each day: maybe not each day…most days though, for sure. The original post also mentioned “leaving apartment every day” as a goal, and overall I am pleased with my performance. Leaving the apartment on Sundays is not as easy as it sounds.

3. I was a non-presence on the Buzzfeed post “The 30 Dumbest Things Drunk Women Have Ever Done” and I’m wondering where my trophy is?

4. Read less. I did not read less. Some might argue that this is not actually a bad thing, so I will still count the loss as a win. And, while I did not publish anything outside of BBT, I DID work up a portfolio of best works and it’s almost ready to send out…almost. Honestly, I’m getting sick of reading people writing articles that I could have done – like this girl who lived according to the Pinterest Popular Page. I think she did a great job – she’s not annoying and it’s actually a font of useful information (an at-home gel mani that really works!) – but…I wanna do stuff like that. Credit: KReav.

5. Sign up for zero marathons. Well….full disclosure: I did sign up for the New York Marathon but at the behest of my sister Charlotte, and she ran it as me. This will also be filed as a W because now when I Goog myself you Goog me it looks like I not only ran a marathon, but that I hauled ass.

6269, Allie Baxter, New York, 03:38:14.

And I’d be remiss to leave this off my list of triumphs:

6. I unlocked the highest, most premium level of membership at Sephora: VIB Rouge. There was a parade and everything

I plan to ride this wave of success right into 2015.

In other BBT related news, my most read post of the year also happens to be one of my personal faves and is full of legitimately useful information: How to Lose Friends & Alienate People. Another one of my favorite things on BBT this year: this visual aid that I made on Excel using a false set of data to generate a line graph and some clip art (I don’t think enough people read the original post on which it was first featured, and I don’t want anyone to miss out):

my-will-to-live-2_Page_1

I can’t wait to see how this year stacks up :|

So, that went well… I hope you all have similarly positive feelings towards your 2014s.

The most newsworthy news of the week, maybe of month, even possibly of  year: Instagram added five new filters…! This is the first filtration addition since 2012, so it’s a big. freaking. deal. Here they are as shown by me:

new instagram filters

Clockwise from left: Slumber; Crema; Ludwig; Aden; Perpetua. Another tweak is that you can arrange your filters in the order of which you like/use them, so adios Hefe. Q of the D: what would you name an Instagram filter? For some reason “Lush” was the first word that popped into my head, and I can’t get past it. Lush as in lush fabric not lush like “have another cocktail, you lush.” Lush.

I’ve had a hard time getting amped up for the holidaze. I haven’t done any of my own Christmas shopping, and we’re not having our Annual Fireball and Pigs in Blankets Gala…Santa who? When I realized I’ll be back in ATL in just a few days, I was like, wait a minute – that’s only a few days to take advantage of NYC at Christmas, and when I get back it will be January…and you know who’s born in January: the devil.^

^This is according to my line graph, shown above. Will you just look at the damn thing already thank you.

So, I got my sh*t together, and now I’m feeling festive AF. On Tuesday, thanks to ole FlemWad’s planning, we wrapped gifts for children for the USPS Operation Santa project. Bringing joy to others is a great way to get into the holiday spirit. I had to run an errand uptown on Wednesday, so I took a detour down Fifth Avenue to take in the windows of Bergdorf’s, the bling on Tiffany & Co., and the tree at 30 Rock – nothing says Merry Christmas like nudging tourists into oncoming traffic. I have holiday-related activities every night up here before I go, and when I get home to ATL I’m going directly to the light display at the Atlanta Botanical Garden (seriously, do y’all just want to pick me up at the Arts Center Marta station and we can go straight there? LMK)…I might be tardy to this party, but I’m coming in h-o-t.

NYC Christmas

 The pic on the top right is a window at Bergdorf’s. Not sure it really gets my or their point across, but I like all the pretty colors. Merry Christmas from the freaky mannequin.

And now for a demonstration of my signature move: the Irish Goodbye. HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO YOU AND YOURS!!! xo

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GET A GRIP

Posted by AllieB on July 24, 2014

Hi and hello.

BBT is not a place for agenda pushing or controversial talk – I’m not here to stir the pot. I’m also not here to air all my dirty laundry (ew) or document every trivial moment: “Dear Diary, I just made my bed and watered the ficus”…but why not mix things up a little? Today I am heading into some uncharted territory: this post is as much for me as it is for anyone with internet access – which means to say: I’m getting personal. Yep, we’re diving headfirst into the deep end, so…hold onto your swimmies.

It’s real pretty to think that by the age of 31 I could be immune to how others perceive me, but I’ve realized that before I can wholly disregard the opinion of others there’s a more basic and fundamental idea that must first be considered: being comfortable in my own skin. Tantamount to achieving complete contentedness – which, to me, is the ultimate goal – being comfortable in your own skin is the holy grail of life accomplishments, one that I’m not entirely sure can be done in your 30’s, or your 60’s, or maybe ever.

I do think that with age comes thicker skin, as well as a zero tolerance policy for bullshit, the ability to see things how they really are, and I’ve finally accepted that I am the only person whose actions I can control and to worry about or obsess over other people’s choices/behavior is a spectacular waste of time and energy. But to be 100% a-ok with me, inside and out…that’d be neat.

Here’s how things work in my domepiece:

Scenario 1: Sometimes I feel like that others might judge – or on a bad day, pity – me because I am not married or even close, I’ve bounced around jobs and have only recently hit my stride in the corporate world, my apartment is not magazine-ready, and I often go 8 months between hair cuts…I’m not and may not ever be a person you’d describe as “put together”…I’ve been known to commit the not-so-occasional social blunder and when people come to stay with me my idea of cleaning is jamming things in drawers and hurling clothes in closets and hoping they don’t notice… (I DO provide clean sheets and towels and plenty of wine – I’m not disgusting.)

Scenario 2: I am killing it! I moved to New York and it was the best decision I’ve ever made; I make awesome steak tacos and a Garden & Gun worthy Tomato Pie; I’m very handy around the house and live just as easily with others as I do by myself…I’ve been lucky to travel all over the world, and I can wake up at 7:15 and be out the door at 7:25…I have an amazing family and friendships that I’m so sure of, I count them as family, too…I drove a minivan for 8 years and people still hung out with me – like I said: killing it!

When I review the two mindsets in tandem like that, it is easy for me to tell Whiny Allie (#1) to chill out because Cool Allie (#2) is doing juuuuust fine. Sorry I’m not sorry that I don’t have two bedside tables and Oscar Blandi dry shampoo is my most prized possession. This is me – take it or leave it. I hope that marriage and a family and a gazillion dogs are in my future, but these things – they cannot be forced.

One important thing to remember is that people really don’t care about what other people are doing. We are a universally selfish population, and for that I am thankful. We have too much going on in our lives to really think about what so-and-so is doing on a judgmental level – right?? I’m worried people are pitying me – but when have I spent even a second pitying someone for their life choices. I am laughing right now thinking about it. Isn’t it the darndest thing – that I can be such a champion of others yet so hard on myself. We should all just do ourselves a favor and GET A GRIP.

I’ve noticed that you can pretty much blame social media for anything these days, and I’d like to jump on that bandwagon. It seems to me that Pinterest is not so much about “collecting ideas for projects and interests” (per Wiki) as it is an aesthetically pleasing exhibit of all the things other people are doing better than you. I don’t think of it that way on a day to day basis – I’m in there pinning all kinds of stuff without wailing WOE IS ME – but when you take a step back and really mull it over…it’s actually quite rude.

Ok, I think that’s as deep as this well goes. The Man Repeller, an aptly named blog I wrote about in 2k11 that has since blown up into a full-fledged business, posted this week about confidence, and I’d like to share her flow-chart with you. I love a good flow-chart. Bottom line: we’re all a work in progress.

confidence-flow-chart-1

I’m trying not to overthink the oversharing that just went down…vulnerability is not my strong-suit.

Luckily I have a story that will get us back on track – speaking of social blunders….

Last night I did some yogging and some yeights in my office gym (I quit Equinox – F that noise) and was heading out around 8pm. I got in the elevator and saw a woman I used to work with. Sidebar: since I’ve been working out in the office gym more than one person has commented that I am “unrecognizable” during and post-workout because of my “ponytail” – and by ponytail they all mean the freakish red-face affliction from which I suffer after 20 minutes of physical activity. In this particular elevator situation, I figured my ponytail + red face saved me from interaction so I kept my head down and put my headphones in….and as I stepped out the woman I knew yelled, “Allie! Allie! I know that’s you!” Dammit.

“Yes, hi” I turned around to say hey

“Allie,” she said, grabbing my sweaty arm, “I’d like to introduce you to Sarah (aka Fergie), the Duchess of York.”

Of course you would. “Oh hi!” I managed, shaking her hand (of all times to NOT curtsy…)

“Oh my  – look at you! Please, please, go on ahead and – look at you! But yes, lovely meeting you….” Clearly the Duchess paid attention in her etiquette courses – Lesson 5: How to Handle Awkward Social Encounters with Awkwardly Sweaty People.

I just hope she doesn’t tell the OTHER Duchess, Duchess Kate, about our interaction…

so sweaty

yep

The End.

TGIT!!! BTW – BBT turned 4 on Monday…happy birthday and whoa. BBT is a kindergartner.

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Woe Is Me

Posted by AllieB on February 6, 2014

<updated Thursday afternoon 2/6>

So, I have my health, the sun is shining, nearly all of the black ice has melted on the sidewalks, and I just read a most amazing masterpiece entitled: THIS IS THE APPROPRIATE THING TO DO WHEN A STRANGER TEXTS YOU. Like, Allie, what was all that nonsense earlier? I apologize for writing such a depressing post – one of BBT’s founding principles is “no depressing posts” and today…I got all up in my head and forgot about the fundamentals; I forgot who I am. #neveragain #neverforget

L8er dudes

<original post Thursday morning>

Hi.

These are the reasons why my life, as I know it, is in shambles:

1. I was the victim of subway grossness. There was a man, me, a crowded rush hour car, and….do I have to spell it out? I took my gym bag and sandwiched it between me and…him, jabbing him with my elbow as I did so, and he definitely backed off, but it was awful. People are disgusting. F you dude, seriously.

2. Between The Subway Incident and The Sludge, I’m sorry to say that the honeymoon is over: I am currently in the latter state of my love/hate relationship with NYC. We had a great run, but things have gone south. The Sludge has taken away a piece of my soul I may never get back. I cried real tears making my way to the subway yesterday morning. The wind + horizontal rain + foot-deep “puddles” of mud/snow/ice/pee/poop (that is what Sludge consists of) made me really unhappy. I didn’t know I was allowed to bitch about winter and have been a great sport about it, but if everyone else in the city is, so can I, and now I’ve unleashed a beast I cannot contain. More weather is coming this weekend. I quit.

3. I am very displeased with the outcome of the Top Chef season finale.

how to get up

help.

WOE IS ME IS RIGHT

But I suppose morale could be lower: I could be in Sochi. The journalists have arrived to cover the Games, and, per their tweets and pics, things are not quite ready. This is horrible. I am actually very concerned about the Winter Olympics, from infrastructure issues to something really bad happening, and the more I read (and I’ve been reading a lot), the more worrisome things seem. One reporter for the Chicago Tribune tweeted:

My hotel has no water. If restored, the front desk says, “do not use on your face because it contains something very dangerous.” #Sochi2014

Then, a little while later:

Stacy St. Clair ‏@StacyStClair  Feb 3 

Water restored, sorta. On the bright side, I now know what very dangerous face water looks like. #Sochi #unfiltered

View image on Twitter

I really thought that was urine. Sick.

Seriously, things are not in good shape over there, and it sounds like they could get worse, with the U.S. Adding Toothpaste Bombs to the List of Sochi Worries. A writer for Grantland mentioned “toxic sludge filling washbasins” – huh? – and a “hotel maintenance crew kicking down someone’s locked door to install a cable box” which seems altogether unnecessary. Russia says they’re ready and have security measures in place akin to a “ring of steel” – I hope they are right. U-S-A!!!

This is a pretty bleak BBT. I wrote most of it yesterday, when I was in a very bleak place, and I figured that today – Thursday! TGIT! – I would wake up with the usual spring in my step and tweak it armed with a decidedly sunnier disposition. I woke up springless. I’ve gotta get it together, let’s cheer me up…

-Jon Stewart had a hard time with what went down in ATL last week, and this is hilarious. Humor at the expense of others is the best medicine

-as far as I’m concerned, David Beckham won the Super Bowl. My goodness.

david beckham super bowl H&M 2014

-a baby elephant faceplant

elephant face plant

-a picture of the city, sans Sludge. Ok, NY, I still love you. We’ll get thru this…there are better days ahead.

bryant park

Bryant Park as seen during a mid-afternoon stroll last spring. I’ll be having lunch al fresco before I know it…ish

-and, of course, this:

hashtag wine

Ok, I feel much better. Enjoy your days.

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