Inspired by: Joshua Radin

After a very tumultuous and trying week, I almost forgot that I had tickets to the Joshua Radin concert last night. I've had a bit of a crush on him ever since my cousin Dahlia first shared his music with me three years ago. Jenni gave me some more of his music (and convinced me his last name was pronounced rah-din instead of ray-din...apparently she was wrong) and my crush only got more intense.

Flash forward to this summer in the springpad office. I find out one of my coworkers has Joshua's new-ish CD on his iTunes, and I can't stop listening. Rachel and I look him up on Wikipedia as part of the age guessing game and realize that he's short, like really short...and he's sort of 35. Still, even though he doesn't pass my height test, I'd still marry him in an instant...If only he were 10 years younger!

Flash forward to last night at the House of Blues in Boston.

 I couldn't stop yelling "I love you!" to the stage, and I must have squeezed Rachel's hand about a million times in excitement when Joshua played my favorite songs. Seeing him in concert only reaffirmed my love for him. His stories were funny, his "whisper rock" breathy and beautiful, and his new more "rock n' roll" songs extremely catchy.

I think my favorite JR story described the inspiration behind the song "No Envy, No Fear," a song he admits to playing for himself every night. Joshua described the jealousy and self doubt he initially felt when entering the music business, and how he finally decided to do something about it.

Instead of being jealous of something you think you want, turn that jealousy into inspiration. If you can do this, you'll be a much happier person. And you know what? I think that's just beautiful, and I might make it into my new life mantra. 

photo via

Rebecca Revisited

My new cousin...REBECCA, with Lauren (who turns 11 today!) and Donna

I don't know if I've told you about my new obsession with When I found out that Pandora started limiting the amount of music I could enjoy to 40 hours a month (which is ridiculous, because there are 40 hours in a work week alone...), I made the switch.

I'm absolutely loving the music selection that the system chooses for me- my favorite stations currently are "Eric Hutchinson" and "Marie Digby."

It's because of that I discovered the song Rebecca, by Meg and Dia. As I sat at work, editing blog posts, the song lyrics caught my attention. I immediately clicked over to my window, and noticed the title of the song.

And then I had a thought- this "Rebecca" song was totally about a book I read in middle school called...Rebecca! I then wikipedia-ed "Meg and Dia" and found that many of their songs are based off of books, which I think is pretty fabulous.

So, not only do I now have a new girl group to check out, I also really want to re-read Rebecca. I'm DEFINITELY adding it to my reading list!

What book from your childhood do you want to revisit?

WASP vs JAP: Graduation Edition

Editor's Note: Please don't take this post too seriously :)

 As you know, I spent the past few days back home in Baltimore in honor of my little sister Sophie's high school graduation. It was great to see my family, a few friends, as well as my pediatrician :)

Soph's graduation was totally different than mine, most likely because she went to an all girl's school, while I went to a Jewish high school. Though both were relatively affluent private schools, Sophie's school mostly catered to ehemm...a WASPier crowd.

Keep in mind, I have a lot of trouble remembering the exact details of my graduation because it was 3 years ago. Plus, I somehow managed to cry through most of it, walk the wrong way on stage and lose my diploma. It was stressful.

Below is the comparisson between our two's sort of turned into a  JAP vs. WASP list:

Sister collageGraduates' Attire

Sophie's school- all of the girls wore white gowns. Some of them were so fancy, they looked like bridal gowns. It was borderline ridiculous

Alana's school- we (boys and girls) wore caps and gowns, the boys in blue and the girls in white.


S- the graduation took place outside in a beautiful courtyard.

- the graduation took place in a synagogue.

Families' Attire

S- Lilly Pulitzer dresses, sear-sucker shorts, bare shoulders, khaki pants and navy suit jacket combos

A- covered shoulders, nice skirts and pants outfits, suits.


S- girls walked in with blue and white bouquets.

A- nothing. We had nothing, unless you count our caps.


S- the national anthem, a few a cappella selections, the alma mater

A- ummm most likely the national anthems of America and Israel

So our graduations were pretty different, but they were both nice overall. It was particularly fun to check out the VERY non-Jewish looking boys at Sophie's graduation. I'm pretty sure you wouldn't have found an American marine in full uniform at my high school's graduation. Nor would you find a boy wearing khakis, a pink polo and a white sear sucker jacket. It sounds so preppy and yucky...but I was completely intrigued.

Wanted: members for imaginary girl/heavy metal band

I've always wanted to head my very own girl band. I think I'd like to play the tambourine, since I can't actually play anything else, and also because Valerie from Josie and the Pussycats always looked pretty cool doing it. In all actuality, I do have some music ability- I played the recorder when I was younger. What a wonderful instrument. It's small, plastic and doesn't require the whole sideways blowing thing necessary with flutes. (I tried that once- epic fail.)

I've also come to the conclusion that if I had my own band, I'd want to call it Potentially Hazardous. I don't know why, but I think it has a nice ring to it. Whenever I use that phrase, which is surprisingly often, I smile and think of my non-existent band. The only problem with the name- I think it's more heavy metal than girl band. I guess I could go heavy metal...
Picture 1
Which leaves me with a few questions?

1) Wanna join my pretend girl band?

2) What would you name your imaginary band?

Oh, and sorry- the lead singer position is already taken by my little sis, Sophie. There she is with her blue guitar, a la her idol, Michell Branch. We're rocking out to Plumb's "Stranded" at USY's "Human Karaoke" night, an event that happened to be in the same place and at the same time as my cousin's Bat Mitzvah. Thus I'm wearing the fabulous dress!

A Christmas Headache

When I first stepped off the train in Government Center, I heard a strange high pitched sound. I thought it was some kid being annoying. Nope, it was an old -ish guy with a clear bucket singing and actually collecting change.

In addition to being annoying, the song sounded familiar. The guy kept singing this dumb song about "hula hoops," it was beyond weird.

And then it hit me- he singing songs from Alvin and the Chipmunks! I watched that movie a little while ago while babysitting and actually kind of enjoyed it, but it was really eerie how this guy sang the parts of all 3 chipmunks, and even the part of their caretaker, Dave.

I stood there half in shock and half in utter agony waiting for my train to come.

Well, clearly I made it on my train and am home now, but I can't get that stupid song out of my head. Have a listen, it'll get stuck in your head too.

Thanks for making it awkward, Akon

[Ever have one of those nights where all you want to do is fall asleep, but your brain has other plans? As in, you're trying your hardest to catch some major zzz's, but instead, your can't stop thinking about homework, or your schedule, or the blog entries you want to write? ( I am such a nerd. Please, laugh at me some more.) Well, tonight is one of those nights. So here you go, my 1 AM blog post:]

Remember this past Wednesday when I drove my little sister to her first date? Well, the reason I drove her in the first place was because I had made plans to hang out with a guy I'd dated over the summer and was meeting him in Columbia- which is halfway between our house and Sophie's date's house. The guy I was meeting is pretty awesome. I think it's pretty amazing that we get along so well even though we're no longer dating. He's a sweetheart and he always makes me laugh. He also sends me emails of things he thinks I'll enjoy, and sometimes I put them on my blog.

But I digress...

So yeah, after we dropped Soph off on her date, we got into  Mr. X's car to grab some dinner. (Not the most creative name, but give me a break, it's 1:30 AM.) He hooked up his iPod to his car radio, and a song I'd never heard before came on. It was kind of catchy, so I decided to listen to the lyrics. They went a little something like this:

 "I wanna make up right na na na
I wanna make up right na na na
Wish we never broke up right na na na
we need to link up right na na na"

I looked over at him and he glanced back at me quizzically.

"What?" He asked, clearly paying more attention to the road than the lyrics, which was a good thing.

"Umm, are you listening to the lyrics?" I asked.

Can you say AWKWARD? But hey, as I always say, when put in an awkward situation, embrace it! (If you want to hear about some of the awkward moments I've basically created for myself, ask Becca. I'm sure she'd be happy to oblige.) To me, by simply acknowledging the awkwardness, you're just breaking the ice to make both parties feel more comfortable. Initially, there's a bit of a sting, but then it's so much better.

Again with the digression!

Apparently, Mr. X had never really listened to the song before, and only after I mentioned it did the awkwardness dawn on him. We laughed it off and had a really good evening :)

I don't know, I thought that was kind of funny.

This guy knows what I'm talking about- gotta love the awkward turtle!

Free! Free! Free!

I got vouchers to see a free movie today. Unfortunately, the vouchers didn't guarantee admittance to the film- by the time Becca and I arrived, the theater was already filled.

Man, I love free things.

Good thing I stopped into R.E.I. I picked up a business card in the store's vestibule. I was drawn by the cute, green bird and the prospect of "two FREE tracks on iTunes:


And you know, I'm all for free love, so I'm sharing it:

1. Go to iTunes
2. click on iTunes store
3. Go to "redeem" under "quick links"
4. Enter this code: AKAKNE3E7HYF

(I'm assuming this code will work for other people and that iTunes wants me to share this information for the cause...)

So why are they offering you free stuff- for the environment, of course! Check out their cause- it's pretty cool: Green Notes- Protect the Places We Play. Their CD even includes a song from one of my favs, Missy Higgins. Unfortunately, it's not one of the free ones...


I love the tramp

Tonight, I enjoyed a fabulous dinner of gnocchi in cream sauce with spinach. I topped it off with 2 1/2 dark chocolate dipped Pizzelle cookies. Yum.

I was also serenaded by an old man with an accordion, which was not only a "musical delight," but also an epiphany causing display.

Here's what I learned: Accordions can be really romantic, but only in theory or in Disney movies (aka Lady and the Tramp). In actuality, they're kind of creepy and really loud. Especially when the guy comes up to your table and plays his heart out hoping for tips. Are you supposed to look at him? Ignore him? Stare into your wine glass? Attempt a conversation with your neighbor regarding the stock market/salad dressing/Jonas Brothers?

In conclusion:


Lady and the Tramp = Oscar worthy.

Accordions = headache machines.