Barney on Barney on Bernie

Former Massachusetts congressman Barney Frank believes democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders can’t win with mostly white liberal supporters and platform of isle crossing condemnation. But what would Barney (the big purple dinosaur) have to say to Barney Frank on Bernie Sanders?

On criticizing Washington insiders

Bernie Sanders: Do the elected officials in Washington stand with ordinary Americans – working families, children, the elderly, the poor – or will the extraordinary power of billionaire campaign contributors and Big Money prevail? The American people, by the millions, must send Congress the answer to that question.

Barney Frank: When he leads his audience in the chant that Wall Street regulates Congress, he draws no distinction between Democrats who enacted crucial financial regulations like the Volcker rule, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and the regulation of derivatives and the Republicans who fought all three and are now working to undermine them.

Barney the Dinosaur: I love you, you love me. We’re a happy family.

On political experience

Bernie Sanders: What the American people want to see in their president is somebody who not necessarily can win every fight, but they want to see him stand up and fight for what he believes, take his case to the American people.

Barney Frank: I don’t personally remember his playing a meaningful role in moving either health care or financial regulation in the direction he favored when we were considering them. This isn’t a criticism of his work at the time, but it’s definitely an example of the scrutiny that should be given to his legislative work on the issues he’s campaigning on now.

Barney the Dinosaur: The dreams you see most clearly are most likely to come true.

With him or against him in blowing up the establishment

Bernie Sanders: We need new thinking to address the enormous crises facing our country. It is too late for establishment policies, politics and economics.

Barney Frank: No, Planned Parenthood and the Human Rights Campaign are not resisters of change. Neither is John Lewis, or the other Congressional Black Caucus members who are campaigning for Clinton, nor Tom Harkin, the leader in fighting for the rights of those with disabilities, nor Henry Waxman and Sandy Levin, who chaired the committees that wrote the ACA in the House and who have written an article defending their work against Sanders.

Barney the Dinosaur: Hello again to all my friends. I’m glad you came to play. Our fun and learning never ends.

On moving forward in the campaign

Bernie Sanders: I think the idea that we are the campaign that has the energy, that can create large voter turnouts, and can beat Trump, will be a convincing argument to many superdelegates.

Barney Frank: As more attention is paid to his record, and as the silence of his colleagues perhaps turns into active skepticism and uneasiness, Sanders is likely to face headwinds he so far has managed to avoid.

Barney the Dinosaur: Then fasten your seat belts, and away we’ll gooooo!

Please check out other posts in this series:

Donald Trump and Bob’s Burgers’ Tina Belcher

Donald Trump and Adventure Time’s Lumpy Space Princess

Hilary Clinton and Disney’s Princesses

I didn’t write this but I wish I did:

Bernie Sanders and Austin Powers

Barney on Barney on Bernie

Undocumented Lives

IMG_0371

My AMAZING journalist friends Diana Clock and Melissa Pandika have been working on a stunning new project chronicling the day-to-day lives of undocumented students from diverse backgrounds. They have shadowed these teens facing of a shaky future as they work toward higher education and citizenship.

An estimated 1.1 million undocumented youths live in the U.S.. The Undocumented Lives project asks:

  1. If our country’s educational infrastructure lowered their barriers to college, what could they achieve?
  2. What economic, scientific and societal advancement could they help bring?
  3. What are the possible downsides?
  4. What, if any, potential policy changes could benefit these students and society?

Shadowed students include a high school sophomore who lost her mother in an ICE raid while migrating from Guatemala who is now taking advanced math classes and actively engaging in social justice movements. Another student walked nearly 300 miles from Sonora, Mexico to Arizona and will begin attending San Francisco State University this fall to explore the use of art as a form of social resistance.

Although these teens can legally attend college in the U.S., the California DREAM Act only covers tuition. They don’t have the Social Security Number required for the jobs that would help fund their living and other costs. The emergence of immigration as a dominant issue in the 2016 presidential election has made their future all the more tenuous.

Diana and Melissa write, “We envision a multimedia project that incorporates photos, text, audio, video and social media. We expect a complex, nuanced narrative to surface – beyond the criminal-DREAMer binary — highlighting not only the day-to-day challenges these students face, but also their adolescent normalcy.” These students are threaded together by their shared hope of a better life. How can helping them achieve that not benefit society?

Please check out the pics and follow them on Instagram here.

Undocumented Lives

Be Happy Every Day

Happy_smiley_face

Romantic setback, sigh. Stop obsessing, ugh. Stay busy, blah. It’s time to dust off my happiness journal. Did I just hear you barf? Curmudgeon! All I have to do to feel the happy moments in my life more than the unhappy ones is to focus on what’s happening now. I refocus with 5 daily techniques and record my efforts in a notebook. The techniques come from an old TED Talk by Shawn Achor called The Happy Secret to Better Work.

  1. Exercise
  2. Meditate
  3. Perform a random act of kindness
  4. Record 3 things I’m grateful for that day
  5. Record 1 great thing that happened that day

The day has just begun, but I can already fill in some of the information.

  1. Exercise: 45 minutes
  2. Meditate:
  3. Perform a random act of kindness: I brought the leftover birthday cupcakes into the office
  4. Record 3 things I’m grateful for that day: 1. While watching Friday Night Lights on the elliptical, Coach Taylor reminded me that character is in the trying 2. Cupcake compliments
  5. Record 1 great thing that happened that day:

I don’t want to look back one day and think, “Those were the happy times.” I want to notice feeling happy today. It doesn’t take life-changing events to feel happy. Just add up all the little moments and give them the weight they deserve. Write it down everyday and soon you’ll change your thinking patterns.

My mom and I did this for months together last year. Some days we shared. We each felt challenged by one technique. My mom has trouble meditating. A year ago she would have been first to blow chunks at the M word and now she has the Headspace app on her iPad.

I struggled with random acts of kindness. I didn’t feel very kind. I got anxious that I wasn’t doing enough or repeating acts too often. Struggling in this way against my impossibly high self-standards has led to me learning to be kinder to myself.

I recommend trying this and so does Hoda Kotb.

Be Happy Every Day

Westbrae Biergarten, Not My Favorite Beer Garden

 

FullSizeRender (48)

We are absolutely spoiled by great places to drink great beer in the East Bay. I haven’t been to Faction in Alameda yet, but if there’s outdoor beer drinking to be had in Oakland or Berkeley, I’ve been there. Westbrae has never been a favorite.

Westbrae is for dogs and kids. If there were a beer garden in Noe Valley in San Francisco (Valley Tavern sort of counts?), it would be just like Westbrae. I went there in the glorious Saturday weather to meet my good ex turned dear friend P. He likes to ride the Ohlone Greenway. It was packed but I’m a professional swooper inner and seat snatcher. I got us a spot at a picnic table while he grabbed some beers.

There are good things about Westbrae. The beer selection is excellent. I loved my Dry Dock Brewing Apricot Blonde and loved his Altamont Hopwash IPA even more. The Brazil Café truck makes delicious food. P and I could hear what each other were saying. Not everyone was young, tattooed, and pierced.

I had a great time and could have stayed all afternoon if it hadn’t been sexy getting ready time. Westbrae Biergarten is no longer my runner up for the beer garden I like the least.

Westbrae Biergarten, Not My Favorite Beer Garden

Joanna Newsom, I Can Die Now

 

FullSizeRender (46)

Last night I Lyfted over to The Fox Theater in downtown Oakland to be my friend L’s guest at the Joanna Newsom show. I would have taken BART but fell asleep in the afternoon and only woke up 45 minutes before show time. Sleeping through any part the show would have been tragic as it was the best show I’ve seen in a long fucking time.

My friend has a quick trigger finger and when she selected “Best Available” at the regular price the day tickets went on sale, she ended up with the best seats I have ever experienced. We were in the second row in the middle! I looked around for celebrities but we were definitely the hottest people occupying those VIP chairs.

Joanna Newsom is weird. She’s great weird. She plays the pedal harp and a grand piano. She sings in a vulnerable (baby) voice. Her lyrics are obscure (dislodged motes of sand, selfhood inverting on a mirror in an Amora Obscura). Her music is scholarly. Her support play a myriad of instruments single-handedly (guitar, tabura, naval, recorder, bass, banjo, keyboards, trombone, and violin).

She moved quickly between songs. I was blown away. I didn’t feel challenged by or left out of the experience. I was all in. It was breathtaking. Woo hoos and a heartfelt standing ovation were well earned. Her latest album is Divers. My favorite Joanna Newsom song will always be Emily and all it’s profundity on 2006’s Ys. I like when it takes the dark turn after the first 4 minutes and she gets growly.

Joanna Newsom, I Can Die Now

Liquor Cupcake? I Don’t Even Know Her III

FullSizeRender (43)
Chocolate cupcake with salted caramel filling and vanilla bourbon buttercream

Tomorrow night is my friend L’s 30th birthday at Missouri Lounge in Berkeley. After my Easter brunch with a friend’s family (pumpernickel bagel, egg salad, Kerns pear nectar, and See’s chocolate Easter eggs), I got to work baking cupcakes. It feels good not to have to follow recipes and be able to improvise now. Baking isn’t as rigid/scientific as some people think.

I did my usual Duncan Hines Devil’s Food mix with a box of chocolate pudding mix for the dry ingredients. Four eggs, 1/3 of a cup vegetable oil, 3/4 of a cup buttermilk, and 1/4 cup bourbon got mixed in.

I decided to fill them this time. Filling is fun. You core out little pockets of cake with a pairing knife, pipe in some goo and then pop the little tops back on. After frosting, no one is the wiser until they take a bite. I’d asked my friend P to get me salted caramels to melt at Berkeley Bowl but he was too stressed out by being in that fucking madhouse, he abandoned his mission.

I ended up at Safeway at 9 am buying something trying to fancy next to squeeze bottles of Hershey’s Syrup. It ended up tasting not salty at all, so I added salt. Then it was too salty. I’d say I eventually wrestled that shit into submission.

The frosting was standard buttercream with extra vanilla and some more bourbon. I went to the fancy cupcake store and got snazzy little chocolate vanilla swirl straws to top them off. Very professional looking. I also got 3 and 0 candles because I think everyone should blow out candles on their birthday. I hope they help make a it a special night for her. She deserves it. She’s wonderful.

 

Liquor Cupcake? I Don’t Even Know Her III

My Sexy Getting Ready Routine

Acrylic_Heels
Clear heels are trashy but she’ll be comfortable wearing these because of the platform part

My friend L is throwing a 30th birthday fete for her boyfriend in San Francisco tonight. We’ll pre party at their hotel and then head to a late show at Cobb’s Comedy Club. We’re dressing up because SF is so suffffisticated.

Unlike the Sexy Getting Ready Song from Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, getting ready is not a horror show. Sometimes I knick myself shaving. Luckily,  I have no facial hair waxing needs. I usually put on music. Rhye is good. Tonight I was watching my Oregon Ducks get demolished by Oklahoma in the NCAA tournament. Here are the things I pretty up for a special night.

Skin: I swear by Palmer’s cocoa butter lotion. It makes me soft and tastes like chocolate yummy.

Nails: When I had more money I used to have fancy nails that I maintained regularly. Now I splurge on a manicure and pedicure once a month. I usually get natural colors, but on a special night I’ll go with color. Tonight I have a deep red wine color on both my fingers and toes.

Makeup: I’m terrible at makeup. I’ve never gotten any better. I don’t watch Youtube and practice. I try to highlight my eyes.

Hair: I create waves or straighten my hair. Tonight I did my curling trick but it didn’t work. I put my hair up in a high ponytail and curl that. Spray it with hair spray. Take out the pony tail holder and run my fingers through with my head upside down. Today it just fell flat. Possibly, it’s because I used mouse or my hair is too clean.

Scent: I have a signature perfume, Narciso Rodriguez for Her. I spray it liberally.

Lingerie: I try to wear something special or at least match my bra and panties. Tonight, I’m wearing a garter belt and thigh high stockings. It feels weird.

Hair removal: I take a bath and shave.

Shoes: Platform pumps are the best. I’m going to be 5’11” tonight and my feet wont hurt. I just can’t drink too much and fall down. I did that once and hung out with the other high heel casualties in the ER.

Clean house: It’s nice to have a clean house when you’re date comes over. Don’t forget to clean under the ring part. Guys lift that up to pee.

 

 

My Sexy Getting Ready Routine