Saturday, September 17, 2005

Cooking Tips 3: Breakfast in Bed

Okay, so you've made dinner twice, and now if you're really going to bowl your significant other over, you're going to have to turn up the heat (pun definitely intended). Now that Sweetest Day is coming up, find a way to break into your loved one's living situation and surprise him/her with breakfast in bed. Now, the past two cooking segments were painfully easy to cook, and this one is about ten minutes of work in total and so easy to make. But it's time to branch out a little, and use tools and a stove.

What we're going to be making is an invention of mine called Scrambled Eggs Carbonara. It's based on a pasta sauce called carbonara and it's also low calorie and fat. Bonus! You're going to need a small bowl, a whisk (left), a spatula (right) and a frying pan. As for ingredients, you'll need grated cheese (get the good stuff, please, not the kind that comes in a can with holes at the top), bacon bits, parsley, skim milk and eggs. When you crack the eggs, don't be afraid to hit it rather hard against the edge of your bowl. Most of the problems people have with cracking eggs is they do it too gently, then they have to pry it open with their fingers, then they get shell in the's terrible. Just give it a good whack against the edge of your bowl and you'll get a clean, deep break. Whip the two eggs with the whip until it's fully blended. Then add1/4 cup of milk and whisk that. Then add 1/2 cup cheese and whisk that. Then add 1/4 cup of bacon bits and whisk that. Then add 1 teaspoon of parsley and whisk that. You should have a well mixed blend of a rather ugly conglomeration.

Add some non-stick spray to the pan and put the stove on medium-high. I prefer spraying a little olive oil on the pan, but you can use whatever you prefer. While the pan is heating (it will only take a couple of minutes), stick a couple of slices of whole wheat toast into the toaster. The toast will be done around the time your eggs are done. Now that your pan is hot, add the egg mixture and let it sit until the edges start to turn a lighter color yellow. Now take your spatula and scrape the outsides of the mixture toward the inside of the pan. Keep doing this, just stirring and turning the egg mixture in the pan until there is no more liquid parts. After a couple of minutes you will have a mostly solidified mixture - this means you're almost done. Keep cooking and turning and stirring until it looks like what scrambled eggs should look like. This end result looks pretty good. Add a little garnish if you'd like, serve with juice, fresh fruit and toast, and don't you look like the chef of the year! Your honey will flip for this breakfast.

My Fair Brady

If you were watching VH1 last Sunday night at 9:30, you had the opportunity to see their new celebreality show, My Fair Brady. This is where former Brady kid Chris Knight (left) and his live-in girlfriend, America's Next Top Model winner Adrienne Curry (below right), unfold their relationship in all it's pitfalls and glories for the world to gape at. And, of course, we do. If you have not seen this show, you really ought to see it this Sunday at 9:30, because it is a little bit funny, a little bit touching, and a lotta bit how-is-this-happening. While the age difference (25 years) is jarring, at the very least, it's really not what's most disturbing about the relationship. And so, we've written an open letter to the couple (bearing in mind that the show is taped well in advance of when we watch it, and they have probably already broken up).

Dear Chris and Adrienne,
You two crazy kids! You're in love, you're living together, everything is hunky dory, right? Well, we all know it's not, so let's be real for a minute here. You both need a little bit of a wake up call that Florence Henderson can't give you (by the way, Chris, no fair springing that judgement session on Adrienne and masking it as a meet and greet). So here I am to do just that.

Christopher, you're about 45 now, right? It's time for you to grow up now. Most people your age have already done that, so you're going to be quite lonely for a little while, but trust me you will be happier once you do. Then you might learn that a 22 year old is not really for you. You might also learn that you need to be up front with a woman when you get involved with her, and tell her what you're looking for in a relationship, or you'll get what you're currently getting from Adrienne. Yes, she's immature and she burps really loud and she's not at all shy, but you knew that when you got together with her. Don't act surprised. Now you have the difficult duty of being honest with her and telling her you just don't want to be with her. Just be honest with her. She'll hate you for it at first, but she'll get over it eventually.

Now, Adrienne, you're adorable. You have this whole modeling thing you're doing, and that's fantastic! Now step away from the middle aged man and go live your life. You're aging every day you're with him. That being said, desperation makes any woman look bad, so for crying out loud, stop pining over this old man who doesn't know what he wants and live your life! Find someone on your level and be with him, because not only does this guy not know what he wants, but you're just making yourself look bad trying to keep a guy who's obviously not happy. Now, what you need to do is tearfully tell him you know he's not happy and leave, and never look back. Then go out and work really hard, get the great career and look back in five years and laugh that you actually wanted to be with that immature loser. Trust me, you will feel like Nicole Kidman!

With love,
Las F

Friday, September 16, 2005

Five Things to Do Right Away

If you want to feel better about yourself physically, mentally, emotionally, or in any other way, there are five things that you can start doing right away that will perk you up and give yourself a better self-image. The best part is that these things cost very little money and have immediate effects. No better time than the present to get started!

1. Volunteer. Now, you may be thinking, "I don't have the time to volunteer," but it's a great way to feel good about yourself right away. And if you are short on time or don't want to waste gas driving somewhere, there's a great solution for you would-be do-gooders out there. The United Nations has a website where you can research and sign up for online volunteer assignments based on your interests and the amount of time you can devote to a project. You can make a difference on a worldwide scale - and never get out of your pajamas.

2. Exercise regularly. I definitely don't advocate this because of the weight-loss obsession - there are a lot of other reasons to exercise regularly. For example, the number one killer of women is not cancer, but heart disease. Do something three days a week that gets your heart rate up for 30 minutes or more. Anything! And as an added bonus, you'll have more energy, and you'll look more toned.

3. Drink water. I used to not drink water so much, but as soon as I started to, I noticed I was thirsty more. This is the body craving water! I keep a bottle on my desk at work now, and every time I feel a little dry I take a drink. I end up drinking about four bottles of water a day. It's good for your complexion, your health and it will help you not retain water when you have water-retaining moments.

4. Eat fruits and veggies. The government says five servings of fruits and vegetables per day is best, and the better news is that it actually helps to prevent certain kinds of cancers. Not only that, but natural sugars give you more energy than refined sugars, and they won't make you fat. So instead of starting your day with a sugary cereal, have a piece of fruit, or order a salad with your dinner. All those nutrients will have great effects on your general health and well-being.

5. Clean out your closet. All that jumbled mess in there not only clutters your space, but it ends up cluttering your mind, too. It's a little bit of control in an uncontrollable world. You'll also discover that the sweater you loved years ago that went out of style is now back in style, so you can create whole new outfits. It will also make it easier to get dressed in the morning if you don't have to stand there for 20 minutes trying to figure out what to put on. Those 20 minutes are better spent in bed.

What does the 2 on her necklace stand for?

"So, OMG you guys, back when I was famous for that Lizzie Maguire show, I was, like, totally overweight! I mean, I had to wear a size 2. It was, like, so embarassing--the costume lady on the set would be all like, what size do you wear, and I'd have to be like, 2, and she was all like, whatever. It was SO, like, what's that word when you're really embarassed? Oh, I already said that? So one morning I woke up and was looking in myself in the mirror and I was all like, OMG I have to, like, stop eating French fries and lose some weight, and not just a little but a lot so people will really notice me and stop paying attention to that red-headed--I don't even remember her name!. OMG it totally worked, because, like, coke is the new french fry anyway! I think I look SO much hotter than that girl whose name I won't name because I hate that B*****! And she's getting fat again, and I'm not! HAH! That's why I dyed my hair dishwater blonde because SHE WAS TRYING TO LOOK AS HOT AS ME. That's why I hung up on her. But, like, anyway, I just, like, found this necklace on a street corner, and it said 2, and I was like, OMG that's the size I used to be, and I was like, I totally have to wear this necklace ALL THE TIME now so that it will remind not to eat french fries, because being a size 2 is SO not hot at all! Did you hear that, Lindsay?!?!?"

Britney Spears gives birth to monster spawn-I mean, baby boy

I can't


That THIS woman

and this two-timing deserting scumbag

are parents?!?!

I heard she named him Sean Michael Spears Federline. The fact that she kept her maiden name in the baby's name tells me there's trouble ahead.

I predict that she'll annul the marriage, keep all her money, and send that fleabag packing. Maybe he'll cheat on her with Sienna who decided it was time to pay Jude back. Either way, K-Fed seems to take little interest in staying in touch with offspring of a prior relationship. Come on, people. He split with Shar Jackson when she was SEVEN MONTHS PREGNANT to complete Britney's descent to white trash hell.

Either way...YIKES.

Why we love Liv Tyler

Liv Tyler has been taking a lot of heat for this picture at left.

Apparently motherhood and some time off have both been good for her. She's been busy with her new baby, her husband, and other family members. She was seen Wednesday eating lunch with her dad, rocker Steven Tyler:

The Shining Intellects love Liv. She is the epitome of style, class, beauty, and good behavior. We were intrigued by her in Empire Records, and we loved her as the luminous elf, Arwen, in The Lord of the Rings. Her decision to act in that movie skyrocketed our respect and admiration for her and it is a mark of her true taste and talent. She acts in well-directed films and has real artistic depth. While we pity her for having to act opposite Jennifer Lopez, that sad fact only underscores our belief that Liv is echalons above the scum of attention-grabbing media sluts, who will do anything to catch the public's eye and will lower themselves to act in any sort of movie to make a quick buck.

Even more important, Liv seems like a dedicated mom who spends lots of time with her little son, Milo. Unlike other celebrity moms we could name (*cough cough Britney cough cough*), Liv is not an attention whore.

We're just happy she doesn't look like Hilary:

Or Renee:

Or Nicole.

You just go right ahead and eat whatever you want, Liv honey. Anyone with your taste in movies and fashion has earned the right to a break. Oh, and your baby is adorable.

The unveiling of Sienna Miller

Sienna, we don't like Jude Law, and we like him even less since he cheated on you. Who cares what he looks like, a cheating bastard is a cheating bastard. End of discussion. But you, darling, could go places. This is a perfect opportunity for you to rise to fame thanks to the compassion of the public. I mean, look at Jennifer Aniston. Everyone loves her. She could get any role she wants right now, appear on any show, visit any celebrity. I mean, Oprah invited her up to her mansion. That means she's golden. The Big O has spoken.

Might we recommend, darling, that when you do go places, you do it dressed in something like this:

And not this:

Or this:

Oh-Audrey Hepburn called, and there's some huge soiree going on up in Heaven. She's really nervous because the big G is going to be there, and she wants to know if she can please please have her old black dress back?

Looks like it's time to go shopping, babe. Call me--I'll help you!

How to Dress for a Party

If you ever watch Everybody Loves Raymond, you may have seen the episode where his daughter Allie was invited to a party and all the attendees were asked to purchase similar looking dresses from a particularly expensive store. After much ballyhoo, she arrives at the party with the dress on, but everyone else opted for normal party wear because the dress was too expensive. We've all been in the situation where we weren't exactly sure what to wear to an event and were paranoid we'd look ridiculous if we over- or under-dressed. Don't let that happen to you! There are a few things you can keep in mind.

The first order of business is to ask a friend what she is wearing. At the very least you'll have one similarly dressed ally. Then ask your friend who else is going, because let's face it - if your sworn enemy is going, you want to look better than her. The key, though, is looking fabulous without looking like you're trying to look fabulous. My trick is to wear a pair of really nice jeans. You know, the clean ones that make your butt look great and are the perfect length. Match this with a camisole and fitted jacket and you have a pretty outfit that doesn't look like you tried too hard. Keep Sharon Stone in mind for this task. Channel her. Remember when she went to the Oscars wearing a black turtleneck and slacks? Remember how nuts everyone went over how good she looked? That's what you want to happen. Sharon did a couple of things that need a second look, because they will perk your outfit up from casual to chic in a matter of $10.

Go to Claire's, or the Icing, or one of those other cheap, fun jewelry stores and find a set of earrings and necklace that suit your outfit well. Pick some gorgeous, large earrings and a dynamic necklace to go with the low-cut camisole. The ones at left are a great pair of earrings, but pick jewelry that expresses you perfectly and matches you well. The accessories really make the outfit, as do the shoes. The other day my boyfriend asked me, "What is it with girls and shoes?" What I tried to explain to him (in vain, I might add) is that the perfect shoe is what takes an outfit from unfinished to unbeatable.

The shoe can change the entire dynamic of the outfit, and it also changes how you feel and carry yourself. In sneakers, we tend to feel casual and walk like buffalo. In heels we feel sexier and walk more womanly as well. Of course, this can also be true for a great pair of flats, so if you're not the stiletto sort, feel free to find a pair of flats or kitten heels (at right) that make you feel like a movie star. Pick an interesting color, too. You don't want to wear boring black all the time, do you? So now you've got everything under control. Pick a cute clutch handbag and put in only the essentials. You'll show up to that party looking cosmopolitan chic but ready to dance the night away.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Hot Off the Presses

It's official, folks. Kenny Chesney and Renee Zellweger have made it across the annulment finish line in record time. It only lasted four months, and the way they were all talking when they got married, you would have figured they'd be together forever. Well, forever's four months. Examine these statements from People:

"I'm the luckiest man alive."

"To be so in love with someone who is so perfect for me – it's just hard to imagine that I'm not going to wake up."

"They are very much in love."

Seems like it was more like infatuation. I guess Carolina Herrera a perfect wedding does not make. Nor does a wedding on a tropical island. And really, how bad was it that it only lasted four months?!?! Just a lesson to us all - get to know the person you're marrying.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Fashion week

This being fashion week, we at Las F have been working round the clock to weed out the bad, the good, the beautiful, and the downright ugly.

As we so astutely predicted, 50s and 60s glamour are huge this year. We love this little red and white number, but we're also really digging a similar dress in black and white.

Who says no one dresses like Old Hollywood anymore? We at Las F strongly advocate all styles like this white number at right. Gorgeous, glamorous, and a celebration of true femininity. Just don't go with white if you're especially curvy-you'll look like a white sea cow.

This pink dress reminds us of Audrey Hepburn. We're nervous about the bows. We give them about six months before they disappear into the oblivion that is painfully dated fashion. On the other hand, they're a welcome and somewhat whimsical change.

The key idea this season is simplicity--not too many frills or furbelows. The lines are clean, making them especially amenable to being carried over to the knockoff stores. We love this simple ruched-waist turquoise number. It's a little short, and the model desperately needs lipstick, but we like it anyway.

What fashion week would be complete without a fashion disaster? This outfit delivers several sizeable disasters. The jacket is oversized and dowdy. We're not crazy about the buttons. The designer has done the public a disservice by breaking Law 819 of Fashion Design: AVOID formal shorts. They are not cute. They are not sexy. They are SHORTS, and they are good for immensely casual occasions ONLY. Bottom line, avoid this outfit unless it's going to be worn by your loveable, chubby, and hopelessly-stuck-in-the-80's aunt Cindy. As if all this wasn't enough, someone ought to tell this model that her face and legs are entirely different hues. Oops with the fake tanner!

Yet another reason why we love Gwen Stefani

Poor Gwen has taken a lot of heat for wearing this suit during fashion week. But we think she looks lovely, as usual. Here's why:
First, Gwen has obeyed the number one rule of dressing casually, which is that Under No Circumstances Does Wearing a Sweatsuit Excuse You From General Hygiene. [Britney, are you listening?] Now, we don't all have to wear lipstick the color of a crimson tide, but Gwen is as polished as a mahogany banister. Everything that should be exfoliated is clean and clear. Brows? Waxed. Nails? Polished. Hair? Creatively styled, but styled nonetheless.

Reason two: Gwen has obeyed the cardinal, yet frequently overlooked rule of wearing loose pants: pair aforementioned loose pants with a hot and sexy top. Why is this a rule? Well, the first and most important reason is that the Shining Intellects said so. After that, the next reason is that two loose items shroud your figure, hiding all assets and making you look like a frump and a scrub.

Well done, Gwen!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

And Now She's Reproducing...

Although I enjoy a few of her less annoying songs, Britney Spears is just a puzzling malaise of redneck ignorance and Hollywood riches. She's always been on the strange side - going barefoot in a public bathroom, that bizarre 53-hour wedding. She was odd and unavoidable, but at least before there was only one of her. Now she has a child on the way - I can only imagine the world of trouble this child is in for.

In Britney's defense, she has gotten quite a bit more sensible since she became pregnant. It's almost like she found her calling in life and decided to get serious about it. The same, however, cannot be said for her husband, two-time father Kevin Federline. This man has virtually disappeared from the papers, most likely hiding out in strip clubs and the local 7-Eleven, and while K-Fed is out having a good time, Mommy Dearest is at home, nesting and preparing for her joyful delivery. I like the new Britney, but she could not have chosen a worse baby-daddy. I mean, how many children is she having, here?

Her responsibility for her pregancy is a pleasant surprise. She's stopped dying her hair (as you can see she's now sporting brown), she hasn't taken a drink or smoke since she got the good's like she's a brand new woman. She also came out with names for her potential child. She does not yet know if it is a boy or a girl, but a recent article in People Magazine reported that all five the psychics they surveyed predict a boy. I tend to agree with their assessment - she's carrying high. If it is a boy, he will be either graced with the name Sean Preston, or saddled with the name London Preston. She says she likes London beause it sounds pretty. I'm sure your 18-year-old son will be grateful you gave him a pretty name, honey. If the child turns out to be a girl, she will be called Addison Shye. Addison isn't so bad, but Shye? That's a poorly-spelled adjective, and little else. But what else would you expect from Britney?

Monday, September 12, 2005

Wickedly amusing

Welcome Blogger Buzz readers!

If you want to read someone who is almost as funny as we are, head on over to Dear Abby's Waste Basket. It's like Dr. Laura with a bad mouth!


It started as a show called Wild On on the E! Entertainment channel. It was hosted by a number of different skinny, gorgeous women and portrayed the party scene of a bevy of exotic locales. Eventually the show found its apparent poster child and permanent host: Tara Reid. She was the perfect choice for the show, which was eventually retitled Taradise. For any of us who have actually seen Tara in action, however, we know she is not at all that good.

Tara has always been a hard-partying gal, with all the drinking (and drunken stunts) the tabloids could handle. Giving her a show where she gets to indulge this seeming addiction is just insensitive. E!, how could you be so socially unconscious? This girl needs detox and boarding school, stat. I admire how she pretended for a couple of years to actually have an acting career, appearing in such films as Van Wilder. Typecast again, eh, Tara? She even went so far as to try to clean up her image, appearing at a P. Diddy party in a gorgeous gown, looking quite well put together. Of course, like anything else, you can put a prom dress on a donkey and it's still a donkey. Tara had a wardrobe malfunction all her own, as the strap of her too-big gown fell down and gave the world a peek. What made it worse, however, was that she didn't even notice it had happened, and just stood there as greedy paparazzi snapped away. Here she thought she was popular. Guess again. I find it hard to believe that anyone could be that numb to what's going on around her, but then again, look at what she does for a living.

That is why this show seems like slow torture to us upright citizens. E! is just being an enabler for all of her negative behavior. She needs some yoga, maybe a 12-step program, and a house in the suburbs where she can read scripts and go on auditions. The network is just setting her up for more of her antics, and that seems like using her, doesn't it? I almost feel a little bad for Tara - she's the butt of a nationwide joke. Not too bad, though - she got herself into this, and she'll need to get herself out. What she needs to do now is take some acting classes, then land a role in an independent film where she plays a nuclear physicist, or something else that's the polar opposite of who she actually is. Maybe she could go the Charlize route and play an ugly person, or the Hilary Swank route and play a boy. Either way, she has to get out of this mentality and really do a good job, and winning an Oscar would be a great addition, too. After that she'd get the chance to reestablish her credibility as an actress and people would start to take her seriously. Failing that, she'll just drink herself into oblivion and she'll continue to be exactly what she is - a punchline.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Review: The War at Home

Fox's new Sunday programming thankfully includes another season of Arrested Development, the brightest show on basic cable by far. Not as thankfully, it also includes a brand new program that, by my estimation, will last a total of 6 episodes before it's cancelled. It goes by the name The War at Home.

Reason #1 that I chose to watch this already critically-panned show is its star, Michael Rappaport. Michael, although an enjoyable actor to watch, has not found a niche in the television industry. His notable turn as a teacher on Boston Public, another Fox show, was cut short due to the cancellation of the program. His hysterical apperances as Phoebe's boyfriend Gary on Friends, a Las F favorite, ended when she broke up with him. It's difficult to understand why he has not found a vehicle that lasts, but it may be because the actors the network chose to pair him with were just not believable in any way. I was about 3 minutes into the opening monologue when I noticed that there was - shudder - a laugh track. Folks, I don't think I need to tell you that the laugh track is dead and gone forever as a useful tool. It's firstly insulting because the producers assume you won't know when to laugh. Producers, take it from me - I'll laugh when it's appropriate, and no canned laughter will change that. I am not easily duped. Secondly, it's obvious that it's not real laughing. Don't assume your show sucks right off the bat - give it a chance.

Now, there were a few things that I liked about the show. It employs the aside-as-cutaway method to break the fourth wall, but instead of only the main character getting to do it, all of the characters do, even cameos by family members you never see again. It's an interesting perspective. I didn't like how ignorant Michael's character was in regard to stereotypes of race, sexuality and social pigeonholing. It just doesn't portray a good image - the father is often disgusted by people and ideas that are different, and rather than learning from his experiences and growing, he remains as ignorant the entire time. While I admire trying to bring back the classic Archie Bunker character, it's widely known that, in today's day and age, he would not survive. It's still a sore spot. So, this show will die, and some good ideas (and another Rappaport vehicle) will go down with the ship. It happens all the time.

By the way, I truly resent that the show is one episode old and it already has a fan club. Are these people at Fox serious? I think what's going on here is a pre-emptive strike against cancellation. Arrested Development was kept on the air by the astute grassroots protest of its fans. Perhaps Fox thinks it will be able to gauge precisely how popular the show is by how many people sign up for the fan club. How ostentatious.

What Not to Wear

The question was recently posed by a loyal reader about the BBC's What Not to Wear, a program dedicated to helping us ordinary citizens dress well. For those of you who live in America, ask the cable company about BBC America - well worth the investment. But are they truly helpful? Do they have the right idea? Las Fashionistas are on the case.

A quick perusal of their golden rules will help us get some insight. Their first rule is about body shape, and how to wear it. We won't go into each individual shape, but the idea is very important, and most certainly deserving of the first slot. Just as we've always said, fashion is an individual pursuit, and you have to work it based on what works on you. They're on target with what works with body shapes. A lot of their other rules are good as well. Play dress-up to find new outfits, veer away from leather pants at all costs, and banish VPL permanently through any means possible. They have concurred with our previous statement to let your makeup accentuate one part of your face at a time. They have other good rules, but the best by far: make sure your shoes are just as fabulous as the rest of your outfit, and this is quite important. We at Las F have a personal credo: no tennis shoes unless you are working out or running. If you're wearing jeans and a nice top, don't reach for your Adidas! Reach for a stylish pair of flats or, for a fancier look, a comfy pair of heels.

There were a couple of rules, however, that we took exception to. They may be the difference between fashion in the States and fashion in the UK, but we're pretty sure we know what we're talking about. The first was to wear color with color. The reason, they indicate, is because if you wear pink with black it will cheapen the color, so you should pair it with other bright colors. The reason we say don't do it is because your outfit will have too much going on, and no one will know where to look first. Take a look at the outfit at right. It's way too much color - would you wear that? Definitely not. Letting one piece stand out doesn't cheapen it, in my opinion. In fact, I think it let's that piece be the star that day. Besides, if you wear two fabulous pieces on two days, you'll get compliments twice instead of once.

The other rule we didn't like was that women over 35 should not wear miniskirts, and I'd agree for most women over 35. But again, this is all about what looks good on you as an individual, and for an example I submit to you Catherine Zeta-Jones. Look at Catherine! She looks fantastic here as Velma Kelly, and with a body like hers, why shouldn't she be able to show it off? Furthermore, there are plenty of women under the age of 35 who should definitely not ever wear a miniskirt. Remember - just because they make it in your size doesn't mean you should wear it. Always keep in mind our golden rule - wear what looks best on you, and makes you feel your best.