Saturday, January 31, 2009

Je T'aime... Moi Non Plus

To my most forgetful friend:

Today is a very special day. Twenty-beep years ago, Julia Andrus Kelly graced all of us (and those of us still to come), with her sweet freckles, pretty eyes, and strong singing voice. While I wish the picture accompanying this blog post were actually of her, it is only a child attached to a defamer article about how Warner Music has the rights to "Happy Birthday" (what???!!!)... But ce soir I will take a picture of the party girl herself, party dress on, sitting in the middle of the floor amid the giant cake courtesy of Keshmara.

Totally Cranaxed,

Friday, January 30, 2009

Chronic + Drunk: A History Lesson

Dear Dennis,

My sister exaggerates. I have never been one for drinking, smoking, keg stands, or body shots. And I hardly think I have suitors in Marrakesh. I have, however, developed a recent interest in "urban slang," and an ability to drink upward of two glasses of wine. So Denny, I give you the history of the word crunk, with a promise of stories from my weekend to come:

In 1995, Conan O'Brien and Andy Richter were scheming ways to get past the TV censors on Conan's late night talk show, and they settled on an all-purpose, suitable replacement for the infamous seven dirty swearwords that they couldn't say on TV: Crunk. The choice to use that word was definitely not random. Ice T just happened to be on the show that night, and he likely fed the word to them beforehand and certainly helped fuel its popularity during the telecast ("That was seriously crunked up, right there."). But Ice never claimed to have come up with the word--he probably got it from Dirty South rappers, who had been using it for years as a euphemism for getting really crazy and fucked up on marijuana and alcohol (stoned and drunk. Chronic plus Drunk = Crunk). Or maybe crack and drunk. Or coke and drunk. Or maybe just being crazy and drunk. Whatever it is, it means getting really crazy and fucked up. And with Conan's introduction of the word to northern suburban audiences, Crunk came into its own as the recognized sound of the new generation of Dirty South Rap, prompting white college fratboys everywhere to wander around going "WHHHUT!! OKAAY!! YEEEAAHHH!!" like annoying dipshits. and it's all thanks to Lil Jon, and by Lil Jon I mean Dave Chappelle.

Kelley, this weekend I suggest you go out and get crazy+drunk because after two weeks of the the-most-shitty-week-in-2009 award going to yours truly, I am ready to pass it on. If you would like to be considered for this, please email or post your sob story and I will consider you for the coveted prize. And by prize, I mean very special Moroccan paraphernalia and a list of suggested reading self help books courtesy of Oprah and Julia.

Megan Marion Eckhart Tolle

And it's just getting started

It's a Trilamb party

It isn't wrong, but not quite right...

Hey pally,

Well, Mme Mimi has returned to Kech with quite a bizzity-bang. I’m not really sure how ma soeur does it but after one public outing she’s acquired two new suitors. That kind of thing just does not happen to me but I’m not jealous or bitter or resentful at all. No siree, I'm totally cool with it. She probably has zero idea how to cook a tagine, so whatevs. Anyway, she’s come back quite the new woman, with a certain unprecedented joie de vivre that, honestly, is kind of freaking me out. Let me explain. As anyone who knows la petite is aware, she is not one for boozing or late night clubbing. Well, we’re having a small get together tomorrow evening at Pascal’s and Megs wholeheartedly suggested setting up a beer pong table. As anyone who knows me is aware, I welcome this idea with open arms, but Megan?? C'est pas vrai. Apres-pong, she wants to go dancing. Like, not dancing to Rent in the bedroom with me, but dancing in a real club where they don’t generally play the best of Andrew Lloyd Weber. THEN, this afternoon I mentioned that it was supposed to rain this weekend, and she responded, “it doesn’t matter…I’m gonna get crunked all weekend, anyway.” Ummm, really? What does that even mean?

Un peu peur,

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Les cours de cuisine

Dear Den,

Guess what?? Today, I made my very first tagine!! By made, I mean I mostly watched Zoubida, Pascal's cleaning lady, prepare a delicious chicken and olive tagine. However, I did take voracious notes and pictures of her every step. ZZ and I made a deal yesterday that I would pick up all of the ingredients, and she would teach me to cook a few Moroccan dishes. Her French is heavily peppered with Arabic, so it was rather difficult to understand her instructions but I think I got the gist of it. She's clearly waaaaay confused because I literally don't know how to do one thing in the kitchen and she probably had no idea till now that people like me existed. I was taking pictures of her chopping an onion because I don't even realllly know how to do that (yeah, that's right) and she was giving me this look like, what the eff are taking a picture of?? Anyway, we also managed to do a little gabbing and I learned that Zoubeeds is engaged to be engaged and has fifteen siblings and likes wide leg jeans.


Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Where is my copy of The Secret, when I need it

Hey Denny-boy,

I recently wrote a story for a magazine and received an e-mail from my editor yesterday, in which he wrote that my piece was “pretty good.” I was immediately insulted and quite upset by this very mediocre review of my work. With tears in my eyes, I grabbed my copy of The Power of Now and attempted to calm myself down through focusing on the now instead of the negative past or my false reactions, or whatever. I was really confused by the whole idea and it totally did not work. So instead, I decided to completely fixate on the e-mail and re-read his sentence like 55 times, beating myself up over the piece of crap story I turned in. I could hear his voice in my mind saying, “Julia, it was pretty good,” with the emphasis on the “pretty.” As I slipped deeper into this delirium, I suddenly changed the emphasis to “good,” so he was now saying, “Julia, it was pretty good.” Which sounds WAY better, right? Instead of “eh, that was okay,” it was now, “damn girl, that was gooooood!” So, I dunno. I’ve read the e-mail like 700 more times and am wondering if it would be okay to write him back and ask if he could possibly re-send it to me using italics or at the very least, an exclamation point or an emoticon.

Julia Fantasia

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Apres Ski

Hey Mr. DJ,

What wonderful news from la petite! I do miss her and Marrakech is not quite the same without her. From what I gather, there is about a 75% chance she’ll arrive at the Menara International Airport later this week. Here’s hopin!

I had a wonderful time skiing, well more accurately, tumbling down the mountain, this weekend. The views of Marrakech and the surrounding Atlas Mountains were spectacular, bla bla bla, but what I really want to talk about is the sick onesie I rented. Kelley Culp, take some notes. It was an extraordinary shade of lavender with dark purple and blue swirls everywhere. The belt was a different, but equally exceptional shade of purple, and the suit flattered my boy body in ways I’ve never seen before. Onesies are really all the rage on the slopes of Oukaimeden. The colors range from wild neon hues to more subtle pastels, but the style, fit and throw-back to the 80’s is consistent throughout. I recently cut some hideous bangs, but the way they naturally fell into a side wave, as though I had actually hair sprayed them into a solid rainbow shape, truly only enhanced my outfit. Okay, so these rad onesies are totally common, but also, skiing with lit cigarettes is pretty typical and not at all frowned upon. Considering I have problems walking and simultaneously talking, I decided not to attempt the ski smoke, no matter how cool I would look.

Den Den, the last thing I want to tell you about the slopes is that the rope lift thingy is fierce and absolutely terrifying. I had to hold on for dear life when I got on it. Like, clench my teeth and growl, hold on. About half the time, the thing violently flung me to the side and the dudes do not always stop the lift if you fall. With one ski partially secured to my boot and my face in the snow, I had to find ways to speedily finagle my tangled and debilitated body to the side so that the next skier would not actually ski over me. Anyway, my neck is rather sore but I left the mountain shockingly unscathed for all of my wipeouts. I guess we have the onesie to thank for that.

A bientot,
Julia Andrus Kelly

Monday, January 26, 2009

Never been to Brooklyn and I’d like to see what’s good

Dear Dennis,
I am emerging from my yearly hibernation to wish you, Rory Gilmore, and the rest of the Yale campus happy 2009. Usually, I am not big on New Year’s resolutions, because I have a problem with committing to things and then realllly sticking with them, but this year I figure it’s time for some change. Generally my goals tend to be superficial, and usually have to do with taking better care of myself, all of it by and large an excuse to treat myself to weekly manicures so I can look better and thereby feel better. Oh dear, hibernation really lets out honesty in me. But armed with “Have a Tempura Tan-Trum” on my hands, I have decided that contrary to my belief for the last 10 years that I ‘know better’, I absolutely do not ‘know better’ and now hand all decisions of boys and relationships to family and friends, who will no longer have to try to nicely warn me and brace themselves for my inevitable disappointment when I realize that I have once again gotten involved with someone.. not quite right. I am thinking less Chuck Bass, more the guy from Slumdog Millionaire. Also, would like to take “like” out of my vocabulary completely, quit smoking entirely, screen less phone calls, return more emails, and learn how to use my beautiful Leica. So Morocco, Minnesota, Brooklyn, Venice, New Haven, Rome or wherever else I may possibly move next week, watch out for the equally indecisive but radically improved 2009 version of myself.
Not so Bora-Bora-ing Pink,
Megan Marion

Friday, January 23, 2009

My name is Julia Kelly and I'm an addict

Mon amour,

I’m ashamed. I am living in Africa and instead of exploring this ancient city, attempting to learn Arabic and doing the things I should do to find myself, or whatevs, I am hidden away in my bedroom, underneath the covers, indulging with no sort of moderation in my current obsession. I’m addicted to the book Twilight. Sure, I am racing through the 500 pages of this salacious teen romance that the thirteen year old on my flight was also consumed with, but there are THREE more books in this saga! I might never actually see Morocco if the author keeps this up. My friend (let’s call her Alex and say she’s from Texas) had a similar experience with this wickedly delicious and totally embarrassing vampire series for teenagers. I thought I would read a few chapters, have a good time at the airport, pass a few hours and that would be it. Nobody would get hurt. Well, thank you “Alex” for getting me hooked on this shit. All I can think about is if Bella will be able to sit with her vampire boyfriend in the cafeteria one last time before he decides to make her his next victim. This is disgusting.

I leave you with a fairly typical passage:

“Bella, will you promise me something?”

“Yes,” I said and instantly regretted my unconditional agreement. What if he asked me to stay away from him? I couldn’t keep that promise.
“Don’t go into the woods alone.”

Help me,

Thursday, January 22, 2009

What happens in Cancun, stays in Cancun!

Dearest Mr. Jones,

I have returned to Morocco, but most unfortunately, sans la petite soeur. Hopefully she will join me in a week or so, but she had a rather irritating encounter with her "spring break" boyfriend (Megs, you silly goose!! There is a REASON you only date these guys over spring break). It is a long story, which I am not at liberty to tell, but when she does decide to tell you (or if you give me one glass of wine), it will really bring you hours and hours of solid entertainment!! Anyway, at the very least, she got a good story out of the whole thing.

So yes, I am back. My flight over was less then ideal as I had something like the flu and suffered from an allergic reaction to je ne sais pas, that resulted in a skin rash. I did not exactly look like a part-time supermodel when Pascal found me at the airport. It is a good thing he likes me for my blossoming cooking skills and handiness around the house. Unfortunately, I don't have too much to report, as I've slept for most of the last two days. It is sunny and beautiful though, which is a delightful change from the -14 degrees in Minnesota. We may go skiing this weekend in Oukaimeden, which is about an hour drive from Marrakech. The drive itself is a fun activity, as you pass through dozens of cool Berber villages that look like they're growing out of the mountains. And Deni, I know how much you enjoy a good Berber village.

Lastly, I must tell you, Megs gave me a pair of your old skinny jeans. I can barely fit into them and I'm at a post-flu weight! This just will not do. Needless to say, I am less then thrilled and will start a strict exercise regime until I fit into those damn things.

Lots of love le petit garcon,

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Working Girl

Dear Den Den,

Ten years ago, I certainly did not envision myself working at my father’s office again. Throughout junior high and high school, I had various stints working for my dad during the summers and to say it was a bumpy ride, is something of a euphemism. Once, I was fired three times in a day. The first time was in the car, on the way to work. I was let go for my usual offense: bad attitude. After a fairly pathetic but successful attempt to get my job back, my dad re-hired me. An hour later, he fired me again. Same infraction: bad attitude. Apparently, screaming at your boss/dad for interrupting an important personal phone call is not acceptable behavior in the work place, especially when your job is to answer phone calls. Lesson learned. A few fake tears and a promise to repent for my bad-ittude later, I was re-hired. I might have labeled like 4 files before I was fired again. GUESS WHY!? A bad attitude! At that point, I’d sufficiently outraged my employers and I realized the dismal outlook of re-securing my position at the law office. Figuring that if I left at that moment, I might be able to catch the tale end of Days of Our Lives, I fake-ruefully and always gracefully accepted my job termination and hit the road. SUCKERS, I thought! Like that office has a chance in hell of operating without me! Those bozo lawyers will be begging and pleading for me to come back in a matter of minutes and I’ll be eating Doritos on the couch, assembling a list of my demands!

To my great surprise, the offices of Kelly & Jacobson did not call me that afternoon and my mother did not greet my new found unemployment with cheer. Well, needless to say, I was forced to beg and plead for my secretarial position back and was re-hired the following day. In the last ten years, I have been hired and fired more then a few times. Today, I sit proudly at the receptionist desk, making personal calls at every chance I can get, emailing all of my friends as I perfect my “I’m hard at work on the computer” look, and generally not doing anything I’m paid to do. I’ve been working here for a record 3 days in a row, so I expect to be let go within the hour.

Tootles for now,