|THE BLACK LIST: TUESDAY IS THE NEW MONDAY.|
|By The Black Table|
Man, is it time to go back to work already? Jeez. We feel like we just blew off those three fingers on our left hand minutes ago. Fourth of July weekend always goes by too fast.
Fortunately, we will always have our Fourth of July memories. Who could forget the hairy, heavy Italian woman on Rockaway Beach with the American flag thong? (Old Glory indeed!) Or the little Japanese man, too full of nationalistic Nathan's pride (and, uh whiskey), whose attempt to eat 10 hot dogs in five minutes went tragically awry. (Don't worry, that stain's gotta come out somehow, right?) And lest we forget, our buddy Tom will never be the same after we stuck that lit Roman candle in his pants while he was sleeping. Loosen up, Tom, and look at the bright side: Hemorrhoids shouldn't be a problem for quite some time.
So we've got 10 happy, stars-and-stripey Black List reviews this week. You can make your voice heard by using the form on the right, or just screaming out the window, whatever you find more efficient.
MATERNITY WEAR-CUM-UBIQUITOUS SUMMER TREND: Blame Juicy Couture for making women think the terry tube top actually looks good. How can anything that is tightly elasticized across the chest and then billowy around the stomach be flattering? It can't, unless slack-breasted and lumpy is the new borderline attractive, and "pregnant-ish" is the new skinny (seriously, try typing "Terry Tube Top" into Google - the first thing that comes up is "Mimi Maternity"). Like the Ugg boot, it's only the women who find this attractive, and then only the ones who are retaining water. Then again, sometimes it's nice to just let your gut spill over your jeans. Damn, I feel like a woman. D -- Rachel Sklar
KIDS YOU REMEMBER BEING BORN GOING TO THE PROM: My dad called to wish me a happy 27th birthday last week, and to rub it in that I'm staring down the barrel of my 10-year reunion, mentioned that our neighbor's son just went to his senior prom. Really? The kid whose mother I remember being pregnant? The boy across the street to whom I gave away a ton of my toys when puberty hit and decided that Transformers were not for kids in junior high? The Prom? That means he'll be going to college soon! And I'll be ... oh, hello 30, I didn't expect to see you so soon. Oh well, pull up a stool, and we'll order a few rounds. Because while the neighbor kids' youth may be feted, at least I can drink myself into a post-prom-esque stupor without getting grounded
or arrested. B -- Tom Panarese
PEPSI EDGE, C2, ALL THAT SHIT: Hey, they now have low carb bagels and Krispy Kreme has a low carb donut, so it's about time the soda companies give me something to wash down my pork-based diet with on a daily basis. Seriously, this Atkins shit has gotten WAY out of hand at this point. Coke comes out with C2, and of course Pepsi's Fast Follower (as the lame marketing expression goes) is none other than "The Edge." Low carb beer makes sense to me -- people tend to drink 6 at a time, after all -- but soda is dumb ... go with regular or Diet, chose a fucking camp and stick with it. D- -- wayne
SUMMERING IN D.C.: Perhaps you've said to yourself, while in the fading twilight of your 20s and seeking a sad professional degree of last resort (read: law school), surely it can't be THAT awful to work in our nation's capital for a mere summer. A spot of advice: Think again. While staggering humidity, a beer-guzzling fraternity culture and a wholesale lack of style might seem cheerfully surmountable obstacles in the full flush of youth, the playground of Banana Republic-clad Senate aides fast loses its charm at the dawn of one's crotchety, asthmatic 30s. Sure, the city can boast air-conditioned subway platforms and ... actually that's about all. In fact, not since the days of Mussolini has a train system been so emblematic of cultural achievement. Serves me right for not having gone to medical school, I suppose. D+ -- Rachel N.
GIANT WHITE T-SHIRTS: I guess every race and creed has to go through a phase involving some sort of white clothing or accessory. Irish and Italian working class men wear dirty white hi-tops, Latino chicks took to wearing tight white jeans for a few years and now the whole hood has dryers in laundromats from Harlem to Hempstead filled with oversized Fruit-of-the-Loom t-shirts. A fashion statement it is not. A deliberate waste of fabric it might be. Something that cracks me up it always is. A -- Chris Fara1
PROVING YOUR OWN POINT: A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a story for New York Magazine, a fun ditty detailing how easy it was to scam focus groups into giving you real money for fake, mainstream opinions. Much to my surprise -- apparently I hit a nerve I hadn't forseen -- the focus groupers of America went after me en masse. Since they were so pissed, I figured my focus group career was over; they surely marked me for death by now, right? Well, apparently not, because I just did another focus group last week, spewing the same bullshit I've been spewing for years, droning on banalities like "Dudes just don't drink vodka; that's for chicks" and "I think Smirnoff has done an excellent job with their marketing campaigns." I didn't just end up with 100 bucks and smug self-satisfaction for my efforts either; I actually listened, mouth agape, as my other focus group subjects discussed my very article in the elevator on the way downstairs. (The verdict: "That piece was funny, but man, I wish he wouldn't tell everybody.") I'm really not out to get the market researchers of America, I swear; I'm just trying to make a few extra bucks, and, heck, it's still working. I feel like Turk 182. A- -- Will Leitch
BARBERS WHO SHAVE YOU WITH A REAL RAZOR: Admittedly, the setting wasn't promising: a dingy facade, copies of Popular Science stacked 16-high on the table next to the uncomfortable chairs where you wait, and, no joke, Rush Limbaugh screeching invective into the echo chamber that is your local barbershop. Clichés are cold comfort, and so was the fact that your barber hasn't needed to cut his own hair since Eisenhower beat out Taft for the GOP nod in '52. When he whips out the straight-edge, and you think it's all gone from National Review to Night of the Living Dead, when, suddenly, he's spreading warm shaving cream on your neck and sculpting the hinterlands of your mane like Praxiteles. There's no way that astringent is sanitary, and the more you look at him hulking in the mirror, the more you wish you had never seen Sweeney Todd. But you emerge a new man: gleaming, angular, ready to throw away every last aloe-basted-nancy-pants safety razor you own. So what if your ear is bleeding? B -- Joshua
PEOPLE CLAIMING THEY DON'T WATCH TV: I don't think I can go one day without somebody informing me that he/she doesn't watch TV anymore. This statement of self-importance is usually followed by a long speech about how "mindless" and "barbarian" TV has become. Why do people say this? Do they think it makes them sound superior? So what if you don't watch TV? No one cares, and no one really believes you either. Do you expect us to give you a trophy because instead of spending your evenings watching TV like a normal person, you sit at home chuckling at an Al Franken column? I watch TV, and I watch a lot! I am amused by reality shows and cheesy late-night soap operas. And, I am not afraid to admit it. When I get home, TV is my only friend. It makes me feel like someone else is there keeping me company. So the next time you're at a party, don't think that you're making yourself sound intellectual by saying you don't watch TV. It doesn't make you sound enlightened and unique. It makes you arrogant and boring. Or, to quote one particularly annoying friend, "well, I READ the news, if that's what you mean." D -- Jamie
BACKSEAT TAXICAB MAKEOUTS: You can have your 300-count Frette sheets and your flickering Pottery Barn candles; for my money, the single hottest place to suck face in this city is in the back of a cab. The first tentative kiss went from that sweet oh-is-that-my-face-moving-toward-you? moment to the body-shifting I'm-kissing-back-and-here-comes-the-tongue! phase that causes 4 a.m. bartenders to roll their eyes. Two seconds later, you're out on the street hailing sweet solitude, and suddenly you're in, arching hungrily toward each other with unused seatbelts digging into your ass and legs sprawled akimbo against the back of Iqbal's seat, and you don't care because for those 30 or so loin-engorging blocks, you couldn't be hotter, and that awkward, hungover next morning couldn't seem further away. For sheer romance and lust and that flicker of who-knows-what-could-happen hope, backseat taxicab makeouts get an unequivocal A -- Rachel Sklar
TRYING THE "52 CARD PICKUP" TRICK ON SOMEONE BIGGER, OLDER AND COOLER THAN YOU: It was your older brother's new best friend. Or it was your 13-year-old second cousin visiting from out of town. Either way, you felt you had to establish your rank in the pecking order. You swagger into the room, pull out your little sister's set of My Little Pony playing cards and ask "Do you want to play 52 Card Pickup?" Before he can finish asking "How do you play?", the cards leap out of your fat, excitable hands. And just as the last purple-haired pony lands face down behind the entertainment center, you realize that you just invented the Solitaire version of 52 Card Pickup. You were out of your league. So pickup the cards, put the deck back and get the hell out of there before your sister notices that Rainbow Dash and Tink-a Tink-a Too are missing. C- -- mike
Each and every week, Black Table readers like you write the Black List and get absolutely nothing in return. Ain't that some shit.