Friday, March 16, 2012

A new home for my little blog


In case you haven't noticed, I've moved over to my very own domain, just like a real dictator: I tried to transfer my thousands of followers over but I just don't know how to do that. So you'll have to follow me of your own accord. If you're so inclined. I MISS YOU ALREADY, BLOGSPOT HEADER. I LOVED YOU. I REALLY DID.


A slightly caffeinated Tori

Monday, March 5, 2012

Things That Aging Bros Say

"I wrote a screenplay once with a buddy of mine."

"That was the name of my band."

"I used to have a lot more hair."

"Ah, my twenties." (knowing laugh)

"I'm comfortable with getting older."

"I'm not big on all that corporate lingo."


"I've never wanted a family."


"I'm comfortable with where I am right now."

"Business school."

"I went to business school."


"Venture capital."

"Business school. Business school."

"Heyyyy there."


Friday, March 2, 2012

Root Canal of the Soul

I love my dentist. But lately, she's been...I don't know. Something's been off.

At my last cleaning, her touch was so tender, so gentle. She told me I had beautiful teeth. She told me I had beautiful gums. When a dentist says that, it means something, right?

Then she pressed something horrible against my teeth and it made a beeping sound.

I had cavities.

But she told me it wasn't my fault. She said I had "deep grooves." She didn't blame me. She knew where I came from, and believed in where I was going (--> the drilling station).

Then the creepy dental hygienist came in and said, "I want your teeth. Can we take them out and put them in my mouth?" GAH!

But I digress. How can I have beautiful teeth if they are also blackened, rotting, and spotted with decay? When I got my cavities filled, my mouth was numb and I was feeling vulnerable. And did my dentist support me for better or for worse? Did she tell me she'd always love me in sickness and in health? No! That unfeeling woman turned on me like a wolf and said, "Have you ever had braces?"

WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?! Does that mean my teeth are hideously crooked? Is she afraid to be seen with me in public? And why was she wearing that mask the entire time? Maybe she herself has no teeth. I mean, can you ever really know a person?

It was a trying experience. I felt so yanked around. So used. Did she just want me for my teeth? And were my teeth...enough? I have to get my wisdom teeth out at the end of the month (punch me in the face); will she love me when I have four fewer teeth?

Monday, February 27, 2012

Hangover Cures

Turn that hangover into a hangunder.

Swiftly strike your thumb with a large mallet.

Cut off a toe.

Run really fast into moving traffic.


Eat something raw. Something still alive.

Jump in place until you collapse from exhaustion.

Watch a really bad movie while giving yourself bangs with a chainsaw.

Go streaking.

Eat an icicle in one bite.

Learn a new language. (It's helpful to set goals: do it in twenty minutes.)

Throw things into the air and try to get beneath them when they fall.

Kiss the next person you see on the street. Chase them if necessary.

Befriend a minor celebrity.

Take photos of things you don't own, like other photos. Sell them.

Take the covers off textbooks for HTML, Calculus, and Hebrew. Try to determine which is which!

Read Lolita aloud in a creepy voice.

Look unattractive and sit next to a cute Frenchman at a coffee shop. (Currently doing.)

Try to poke things near, but not in, your eyeballs.

Heard of “hair of the dog?” Two words: actual dog hair. (Counting is hard right now.)

Random anecdote from my life: last night I put two pieces of pizza in the oven and forgot about them. In the middle of the night, I woke up to the sound of smoke detectors. My carbon monoxide detector was also bugging out, and my apartment was filled with thick gray smoke. Like any rational human being, I yanked the smoke detector off the wall and went outside and threw across my backyard and against the brick wall of the building behind my apartment. It shattered. It also stopped shrieking. Then a bunch of firemen showed up and took the pizza out of the oven. Meanwhile, I WASN'T WEARING PANTS. THIS IS A TRUE STORY! THAT'S WHY I'M EATING TWO BAGELS RIGHT NOW! Please leave me alone.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Ten Terrible Kisses from Long-Lost Literary Works, Part Two

Valentine’s Day comes but once a year, but the memory of a slimy, prolonged kiss is forever. If you missed it, revel in part one here.

1. The Overly Metaphorical Kiss from Neruda’s Early Poetry

Neruda wasn’t always the gorgeously direct poet of sand and sky that we now know him as. Like all of us, he really sucked once upon a time. Check out this tangle of metaphors from an early poem entitled “Apple Orchard and Moons”
Love, I kiss the succulent apple of your cheek
Which is also a moon, a round white moon,
But flushed like an apple. Pink and red, apple-colors,
Colors that remind me of your lips, those apples.
They are as cold as the moon. But pink like the inside
Of the belly of a dying snake.

2. The Unpleasant Surprise Kiss from Theseus and the Minotaur

In one of the many spin-off myths concerning Theseus and the Minotaur, Theseus rounds the corner of the dark labyrinth and gets a nasty shock...
He clutched at his sword, gasping in fear every time his shoes scraped the dank walls. The labyrinth was eerily silent. A sharp turn appeared before him—there was only one way to go. Heart pounding, Theseus leaped around the corner and suddenly his mouth was pressed against something large, hairy, and smelling vaguely of beef. The kiss went on for what seemed like years before the Minotaur sprang back with a bellow of disgust. “KILL YOU FOR THAT,” screamed the bull. Theseus pulled out his sword. “None kisseth me and liveth to tell the tale,” he said in a voice like iron.

3. Sauron’s Kiss from The Return of the King

Critics and Tolkien-ites alike often wonder why the following passage was deleted from the original draft of LOTR:
Sauron looked down at the vulnerable orc. For a moment, the Dark Lord saw himself in the fallen soldier—lost, alone, thrown onto the erratic winds of fate. His eyes stung. What was this emotion filling his soul? Weakness! Weakness! Still, Sauron lifted the orc’s bloodied hand, without meaning to, without wanting to, and placed his cold lips upon its palm. “It will all be okay,” he whispered. The orc twitched and died. Sauron dropped the lifeless hand in disgust. “Weak, sniveling creature,” he hissed.

4. The Awkwardly-Timed Kiss from The Time Traveler’s Wife

Audrey Niffenegger’s debut, The Time Traveler’s Wife, has been criticized for its trite plot and melodramatic style, so thank goodness her publishers decided to slash this passage just before the book went to the printer:
We were laughing, kissing, walking down the sidewalk and kissing and laughing and kissing some more. I didn't look where I was going—I was too lost in his eyes. He kissed me again and I closed my eyes and took a step forward and then he time traveled and I crashed into a lamp post. My head throbbed for days. Later, he arrived with a poultice stinking of 1764. I said, ‘I thought you couldn’t travel outside of your lifetime?” and he looked guilty. Then he told me that he was really Thomas Jefferson. 

5. The Oedipal Kiss from Oedipus Rex
Oedipus leaned forward to kiss his wife. SURPRISE! It was his mom.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

How to Attract Men at Coffee Shops

Everyone is whining about the demise of literature but listen: men go crazy for girls who are reading thick novels or typing away on their laptops while drinking coffee. I don't understand it! Do you think that girls who read and write are smarter or something? More sensitive to the human condition, and thus better equipped to handle your fragile male psyche with lovely slender fingers designed to cradle young children and select the freshest and most exotic fishes at the fishmarket?

No, no, no, no, no!

Girls who read are crazy! Girls who write are even worse. For example, about ten minutes ago, my friend (a female writer) just yelled the following non sequitur:


A few minutes later we had the following conversation:

Me: “He makes perfume out of...”
Her: “BLOOD?”

Men at coffee shops, why do you think that we are your soulmates? Don't be distracted by how hot it is when a girl reads something cool. Listen to our words. Read our lips. We are talking about death and destruction! We are making jokes about fascism! We are creepers. Also: eff off, we don't want to get hit on, we're trying to get some work done here. YES THIS BOOK IS GOOD. THAT'S WHY I'M READING IT. NO I DO NOT KNOW HOW IT ENDS.

In my experience, South American male writers tend to attract the most men. 2666 is like male catnip. Don't read Marquez on public transportation or you will be mobbed with offers of marriage, and let me tell you, even the most gorgeous Tiffany's diamond hurts when a rabid, literature-starved businessman throws it directly at your eyeball. I can't even imagine how much girls who read David Foster Wallace get hit on. I can smell Old Spice, just thinking about it.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Ten Terrible Kisses from Long-Lost Literary Works, Part One

Flavorwire has compiled a list called 10 of the Greatest Kisses in Literature, which is great, but can we please stop swooning over Romeo and Juliet and start shivering in horror about literature's most awful kisses, instead? Here, for the first time in history, I've unearthed a decade's worth of Valentine horror stories from a compilation of ancient, lost, or mysteriously destroyed texts. Enjoy--and don't forget your chastity lip ring tonight. (It's like a chastity belt, but no one can kiss you unless they have the key. Also, your dad swallowed the key. Happy Valentine's Day!)

1. The "Lizard Tongue" Kiss from Pyramus and Thistle

Long after Pyramus and Thisbe died of their ill-fated love, there was Pyramus and Thistle, a charming novella from the early 1700's about a jolly bachelor and his librarian ladylove. Charming, that is, until this dark passage surfaces halfway through:
"Why, Mr. Pyramus," she breathed. "You're standing awfully close." It was then that he reached out his impossibly long tongue and gently licked her earlobe. She shivered in anticipation. "I love you," he said, and bent his head down and kissed her. "It feels like I'm kissing a thousand lizards," she whispered.
2. The "Smash Mouth" Kiss from Smash Mouth: A Super Authorized Biography

Remember the band Smash Mouth? Their manager wrote this biography, which was subsequently destroyed by a lunatic editor at Random House who insisted it was the worst piece of writing he'd ever read and then jumped off a bridge. In this passage, the lead singer reflects on a memorable groupie:
She kissed me and I felt like an All Star. I felt like I was Walking on the Sun. We Smashed our Mouths against each other for a while. Then I had to go back to the Astro Lounge and get ready for my next set. "You can be my girlfriend for the next hour," I told her. She looked pleased.
3. The "Creepy Tree Kiss" from Shakespeare's Long Lost Picture Book

Much speculation has been made about Shakespeare's missing plays, but in 1984, a professor at Cambridge attempted to free a bat that was caught in his chimney and instead pulled down a vital piece of chimney support, bringing the entire structure crashing onto his head. Once the rubble cleared, his grieving wife noticed a sheaf of yellowed paper protruding from one of the bricks. It was entitled "The Kissing Tree," and it was a picture book written by none other than one "Wm Shaksper."
"Lean closer," said the tree. "My leaves tinkle in the wind, as though they were the very soul of love, crying for her master." The little boy crept closer. "Place thy lips on my bark," said the tree, "for I kiss by the book."
 4. The Deleted "Parent's Kiss" from The Virgin Suicides by Jefferey Eugenides

Anyone who has read The Virgin Suicides knows that it is a lyrical masterwork, a gem of surreal prose-poetry. Thankfully, the author deleted some of the more awkward paragraphs from the book before sending it to his editor, including a passage where the Lisbon parents touch lips for the first and only time:
We watched Mr. Lisbon take the groceries from the car and walk up the front steps, staggering under the weight of the brown paper bags. There was Mrs. Lisbon at the front door, looking at him with a face like a sour crabapple. Their speech floated toward us on a soft breeze that reminded us of the sisters' collective, sighing breath.
"Did you remember the extra toilet paper?" said Mrs. Lisbon. Her husband nodded. We had never seen such an infinitely weary face. "What about the creamed corn? The canned peas? The maxi pads? The five gallons of Drano? The powdered milk?" He kept nodding, and his thinning hair wavered in the breeze. "Did you get the expired milk? You know it's cheaper," said Mrs. Lisbon. One final nod. She smiled begrudgingly and planted a hard kiss on the skin beneath his nose. It was the sound of a woodpecker against bark. From an upper window, we saw another Lisbon girl jump to her death.
5. The "Kiss of Death" from the Original Snow White

Everyone knows that the original fairy tales are way more gruesome than the Disney versions. But the original original Snow White, the pre-Grimm version, which dates back to the Ice Age, is more than gruesome--it's just plain freaky. When the Evil Queen finds out that the Huntsman hasn't actually killed Snow White, she flies into a vicious rage and gives him a kiss that means a lot more than "I kinda like you..."
The queen smiled--a slow smile that seemed carved out of ice. "Never fear," she said. "She'll die of the poisoned apple soon enough. But you, my dear huntsman, you'll have a different death." And with that she reached out and took his throat in one white hand. She squeezed until he gasped for breath. "Your lips are almost as red as mine, now," she mused. And with that, she bent down and kissed him, and her lips were shards of ice, and immediately all the blood in his body became snow. "Sleep now, my huntsman," said the queen, caressing his frozen cheek. Now her smile was a secret inward thing, like a dying creature trapped beneath the thick ice of a frozen river. 

Terrible. Absolutely terrible. Stay tuned for part two, lovebirds!