Stephanie Perkins Blog About Stephanie Books On Writing News Extras



6.30.2008

Lost + Found

I've grumbled a lot about work lately, something I try not to do. (Stop laughing, Jarrod. I said try.) Because I have a GREAT job.

You know, for a job.

But my work philosophy tends to run very Peter Gibbons:


"I did absolutely nothing, and it was everything I thought it could be."


YES! I'm with you, Pete.

But with school out -- and beach trips and long car rides planned -- the library is swarming. And after another frustrating, exhausting day, I need to remind myself why I have a Good Job.

So here goes.

A) My coworkers are awesome. Really, they are. Best ever.
B) Walking to work & eating lunch at home every day.
C) Finding letters addressed to Greek gods.

Wait . . . what was "C" again?

In contrast to my list of nasty things found in library books, here is one FANTASTIC thing a colleague pulled out from the back of Mythology a few weeks ago (sorry for the blurry factor, it's a photocopy).




If you can't read that, it says:


Dear Poseidon,


I really like you. Can you please show your self to fairview north carolina?

Jordan


Has a better letter ever been penned? I thought not. And that's why working in a library is pretty darn cool after all.

6.26.2008

Why Our Neighbors Hate Us

Well, hate is a strong word, but they couldn't have been happy.

Let me back up.


For the first two years of home ownership, I was dedicated to HGTV. I couldn't get enough of those "Fix My Ugly House" shows, in particular . . . the reveal.

Camera pans across the room Before. White walls and venetian blinds and Fisher Price toys scattered across mauve carpeting. Camera pans across the room After. Colorful paint and bamboo storage bins and happy crying ladies.

In the spirit of the reveal, here are two Before & Afters. This is what happens when you ignore your life to write a novel. (Not shown: Me eating salt and vinegar chips for dinner because Jarrod is on tour and I'm too busy/lazy to cook anymore. Totally sad.)


Vegetable Garden, BEFORE:

BEFORE we realized our backyard looked abandoned. (I love Jarrod's thumbs up. He loves mowing SO MUCH. Ha!)


Vegetable Garden, AFTER:

AFTER two days of weeding and a bad sunburn.


It's not pretty, but at least it's tidy. We don't have time for a big garden this year, so we mulched over most of it using whatever was lying around -- black tarp, pine bark, grass clippings, newspaper. We also finally put in the little plantlets that had been dying on our back porch for the last month.


Puny, but alive!


Before you judge me, you should know that even though our backyard may not be beautiful, at least we take care of the front:


You didn't know I was a Vanderbilt?


Moving on . . .


Sable, BEFORE:

BEFORE her summer haircut, but AFTER we realized the people who named her (not us) didn't know what color "sable" was.


Sable, AFTER:


AFTER removal of several pounds of fur (even though, inexplicably, she looks fluffier), but BEFORE I figured out how to eliminate red eye on Photoshop.


And because I can't show one dog without showing the other, here's what Pip has been leaving on our floors lately:


Thanks, buddy. I'm gonna put some blue hair in your water dish now. What do you think about that?

6.24.2008

They say your tastes change every seven years.



Have you ever fallen in love with the artist before the art? I'm sure it's happened to me before, but I'm struggling to remember when. Even movie stars trick us -- we're not really falling for Johnny Depp. (That comes later, after the interviews and photo spreads and fedora hats.) First we fall for Edward or Jack or, heck, even Sweeney. After all, actors act. We're supposed to fall in love with them. Without it, they have no career.

And musicians . . . goodness knows there are some major uggo rock dudes scoring with the ladies. Even my particular musical crushes -- Thom Yorke being the best example -- are, well, weird. If Thom weren't pouring out his soul into beautiful music, I'd probably be like, "What's up with that guy? Is he okay?" But because I love his music, I love him. Passionately.

So I have a new love. Or an almost-love. A growing love.

When Coldplay first appeared on the scene, I dismissed them. To my ears, they were a radio-friendly version of Radiohead. And what was the point of that? I already had my Thom -- complex and moody and just the way I like him. Then the fabulous Garden State soundtrack came out, and I was like, "Well, that's a pretty good song. But there's better stuff on here." And then "Clocks" was a big deal, and I thought, "That's a neat hook." But that was that.

And then I saw them on Austin City Limits.

And there's no other way of putting it -- I was dumbfounded. THIS was Coldplay?? Chris Martin had this energy, this charisma, that I could have never imagined. I watched the whole thing, mesmerized, and even Jarrod (who found them bland) stood by in shock, taking in several songs.


Check out the video for "Talk" here, if you don't believe me.


My interest rose. I started picking up their albums, here and there, but found my liking was still tentative, conditional.

But then this. The current Rolling Stone. Have you seen it? I know, I know. Rolling Freaking Stone. Not exactly cutting edge. But they give a good interview from time to time, and there's usually an interesting news story tucked in the back (Fast Food Nation started out as a RS article).

The cover caught my attention -- Hello, Sgt. Pepper -- so I flipped through it to get a taste. And once again, Chris Martin surprised me.

The interview was incredible. Funny, intelligent, inspiring. Self-depreciating. With each question, my respect for him leaped and bounded. By the end, that was it. I was a fan.

For the past week, my stereo has been playing their whole oeuvre. Eight years later, and I finally understand the love of "Yellow." But it was THE ARTIST, not the ART, that got me first. And that's strange, right?


Strange, indeed.


From the interview:

"What's the point of being negative? Where does that get us? It gets you your own radio chat show, but it doesn't really do anything for the world."

"The bad songs come from me and my knowledge of how to write songs, and the good ones come from somewhere -- I have no idea where. And they tend to be flying around at about 2:00 in the morning. You just have to be there to catch it . . . no one can tell me where the melody for 'Strawberry Fields Forever' comes from, because it would have just come. I bet John Lennon didn't design it. Still, you can hear the demo of it. It's OK. It's an acoustic thing. Then it turns into 'Strawberry Fields' somehow. That's where hard work comes in."

"You've got to be hungry. If your wife went out with Brad Pitt, you'd want to prove yourself, you know what I mean?"

"Our relationship with Radiohead is a funny one -- we were kids when they got huge, and obviously we stole a lot from them in our early music. Sometimes I feel like they cleared a path with a machete, and we came afterward and put up a strip mall. I would still give my left ball to write anything as good as OK Computer. I would become a eunuch just for 'Paranoid Android.'"

"The first time I ever sang in public was in a school concert when I was 11 . . . I remember these two girls came up to me afterward and said, 'We heard you singing,' and then they both giggled and ran off, as if to say, 'It was shit.' And my whole life has been that day repeating ever since."


-----


Speaking of music, I'm having all kinds of luck lately. I love how just when I think I'm sick of everything out there, dozens of new artists or songs come knocking on my door at once to prove me wrong. Lots and lots of new (to me) stuff in rotation. Some of my favorites:


"Is There A Ghost" -- Band of Horses
"Hermetico" -- Balkan Beat Box
"Besoin De Rien" -- The Hellboys
"Smoke Detector" -- Rilo Kiley
"Start Wearing Purple" -- Gogol Bordello
"Paranoia in B-flat Major" -- The Avett Brothers
"Leave Your Bourbon On The Shelf" -- The Killers
"I Didn't Like You Anyway" -- The Donnas
"Daughter" -- Loudon Wainwright III
"Mister Driver" -- Plasticines
"Whole Wide World" -- Wreckless Eric
"Daydreamin'" -- Lupe Fiasco w/Jill Scott
"West Coast" -- Coconut Records (Jason Schwartzman)
"Southside" -- Common w/Kanye West




Also, how did I not know about Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova's The Swell Season? If you enjoyed the Once soundtrack, check it out. Not to mention Glen's band, The Frames. I'm LOVING "Pavement Tune."

And the new Sigur Ros (Med Sud I Eyrum Vid Spilum Endalaust -- whatever the frick that means) is woooonderful! Happy happy joy joy!


-----


Now, to bring things back to my One True Love (apart from Mr. Husband, Mr. Darcy, and Mr. Depp, naturally), I found this on NPR's website:

Thom Yorke, guest DJ.




WOO HOO! Cool music plus a nice chat with Thom (who is in good spirits and seems to genuinely enjoy talking to the host).

The world is beautiful when you're in love.

6.22.2008

Greatest. Husband. Ever.

This is how much I love my husband.

Friday night. We decide to make Greek salads and French onion soup for dinner. Jarrod offers to go to the store, so I can stay at home and read (see how awesome he already is?). Twenty minutes later, the characters I'm reading about start eating ice cream.

Suddenly, I must eat ice cream.

Emergency call to Jarrod. He's already left the grocery, but he heads back (see??) and picks up a NEW list of groceries. And when he arrives home, we immediately, simultaneously confess we would much rather eat ice cream than soup and salad.

And the great thing is we can. Because we are adults. Mature adults!

Right.

So this was dinner: a giant bowl of vanilla ice cream, bananas, chocolate sauce, peanut butter, and SPRINKLES. Lots and lots of SPRINKLES.

And what goes better with an ice cream sundae than thirty minutes of horror-film deaths? I loved how we were both like, "Yeah! Now's the perfect time to watch Monsters, Murders & Mayhem: a fast-paced concert of highlights from the murderous career of Tom Savini."

I mean, ice cream and monster beheadings. Hand in hand, right?

This was not the end of his awesomeness. Yesterday, my super-cool JANE AUSTEN ACTION FIGURE arrived in the mail, and when I told him I wanted to go shopping for an action figure boyfriend for her, he didn't say, "That's weird."

He said, "Okay."

YES!!!

She's wondering where my copy of Northanger Abbey is. (Check my nightstand, Jane. I'm re-reading it. Again.)


To rectify the lack of Mr. Darcy-ness/Jarrod-ness in Jane's real life, I've decided to give her a whole HAREM of boyfriends in her action figure life. Except I've never heard of a word that means "harem of men." (Have you? I am genuinely curious.) Enter Jarrod's new word, a perfect word:

Jane is going to have a Gigolodeon.

We went to Target, but the pickings were slim. I'm not about to set her up with a Transformer or Darth Vader. So my quest turns online. Perhaps these lads:

Jack Sparrow -- I hope he can set down those swords. Don't want to scare her.
Mutt Williams -- Jane would dig the leather jacket. (And Indy is too old for her.)

Who else do you think she'd like? Suggestions?

6.17.2008

Library Lewdness

I had the late shift at work today, which meant when I arrived at 11:00, the library was already swarming with summer reading madness. The first person to grab me was a woman I'd never seen before. She was clearly agitated.


Woman:
Someone has made a mess in the bathroom.

Me: Really?

Me, thinking:
I hope it's not poop again.


Woman: There is soap EVERYWHERE on the mirror. And a NAUGHTY WORD on the countertop.

Me: Thaaat's wonderful.

Woman: WHY IS THAT WONDERFUL?????

Me: (silent)

Helpful Coworker: That was sarcasm.

Woman: Oh.


Within the next five minutes, I received three more complaints. Anxious to clean it up before storytime let out, I grabbed a roll of paper towels and headed into the Ladies to scope out the damage.

And, indeed, someone had been having a little too much fun with the liquid Dial. It was dripped and smudged and splattered down the mirror. Large puddles were globbed across countertop.

And next to the door, written in golden soap, was the naughty word:

ASS!

I love the exclamation point. That really makes it.

Okay, I thought, I've cleaned up worse. Much worse. In my various places of employment, I have wiped crusty puke from the cracks of a tiled wall and scooped liquid poo from an overflowing toilet with an empty butter tub.

I can handle a little soap. At least this was a sanitary job.

But do you know what happens when you mix soap with water? Of course you do. I am still not sure why I was so surprised.

Because BUBBLES. That's what happens.


Just ask Neil.


Before I realized my mistake (wipe with dry paper towels first, THEN wet), the sink was overflowing with suds and the counter was a white streaky mess, and my hands and arms and shirt were all covered in BUBBLES. It was nowhere close to being clean.

Well, perhaps "clean" is the wrong word. It was plenty anti-bacterialized by this point. You could have eaten sushi off this counter. Soapy sushi, but sushi nonetheless.

It took fifteen minutes to get the bubbles under control. For the first ten, I cursed the girls who had done this. I had my suspects. Yesterday, right before closing, three thirteen year-olds giggled ferociously in the hallway outside the bathroom. I thought, "How cute. They're having so. Much. Fun! I remember being silly with my friends too."

Hmph.

Now I wished I had gotten my head out of my ASS! and inspected the source of their amusement.

But as I scrubbed, my irritation subsided and was replaced with disappointment. Not because of what they had done. I mean soap -- pretty harmless. Who cares? My disappointment instead was this:

Really? Ass? That was the best they could come up with?

If only they had asked my opinion, I would have been happy to find them something suitably more offensive. After all, they were in a library. Research is our business.

They could have at least picked up a thesaurus.

-----

In other work news, only two weeks after our "Name Our Fish!" contest ended, we found Bob motionless in the tank last Friday. We are all very sad. His funeral was held in the garden next door to the pizza place.

He is survived by Beowulf and Aunt Alice, and Marcus Phoenix Doppelganger (the plant).

-----

And, because I'm in that sort of mood, here is a list of the top three grossest items I've found used as bookmarks:

3. Used Kleenex
2. Chewed Toothpicks
1. Bloody Band-Aids

-----

And the Number One Most Disgusting Thing ever found in the book drop?

That would be the sex toy.

6.14.2008

Northanger Abbey Love


How much do I want this Jane Austen action figure? SO MUCH.

I am totally ordering it. Tonight.

So I've never understood why Northanger Abbey is Jane's least popular novel. (Excepting, of course, the extremely vocal anti-Fanny Price set.) I suppose the lack of interest is because it's so different from her other works. Or is it? This week I picked it up late one night when I was having trouble sleeping. Something about it called to me, so I thought I'd read just a passage or two -- and I ended up reading the whole thing again.

It's brilliant.

From its defense of novels ("in which the greatest powers of the mind are displayed ... in the best chosen language") to its dialogue, which crackles and sparkles off the page (Henry Tilney's teasing -- I'd kill to write like that!), it's one of her smartest, funniest works.

Although it's often discussed as a parody of the Gothic novel, it's also a Gothic novel itself. Jane cleverly twists the usual predicaments to fit modern society, such as the neglect of the heroine (the Allens and the Thorpes are only interested in themselves), abduction of the heroine (pressured into carriage rides against her better judgement), and, of course, the Evil Villain. General Tilney may not be guilty of the deed Catherine suspects, but the way he places her life at risk is arguably the worst crime in all of Austen.

It's quite thrilling.

And what's not to love about Henry Tilney? He's handsome, clever, sarcastic, and sympathetic, not to mention a novel reader, a dog lover, an attentive brother, and a little bit messy. And he gives up everything for her.


You can't tell from this picture, but he's actually smiling at ME.


The moment he discovers Catherine in his mother's chamber is one of the most mortifying scenes ever written. I feel her shame even more than Emma's in the famous Box Hill incident.

Powerful stuff.

As soon as I finished re-reading it, naturally, I had to re-view the film. If you haven't had the pleasure, check out this delicious Tilney highlight reel:





Don't you want to see it now? I thought so. Just make sure you get the DVD. After doing my research tonight, I discovered that the version I taped off PBS is actually missing scenes. How dare they?! Now I have to buy it to see the rest.


Don't be sad, Catherine. You'll be in my home before you know it.


During my obsessive Googling, I also discovered several wonderful Jane Austen blogs. These three were my favorite:

Jane Austen Today (which led me to the above video)
Austenprose
Jane Austen's World

Glad I'm not the only one obsessed!

6.10.2008

The Lady Lorelei + Linkage



My dear, sweet, wonderful friend Paula -- talented writer, editor, cheerleader, and (cough) personal shrink -- has a new baby girl! Her name is Lorelei and she is the cutest baby EVER and I am going to steal her when Paula isn't looking.

I'm sure she won't mind.

To celebrate Lorelei's arrival, I put together this gift. The first part was a box of SUPER AWESOME children's music. Thirteen CDs that an adult can listen to all the way through without gnashing their teeth or cursing purple dinosaurs. In case you're wondering, Elizabeth Mitchell, They Might Be Giants (Yes! They write children's music!), Jack Johnson, The Beatles and The Monkees (my own mixes) feature heavily.

I made the bibs with the help of Sublime Stitching. I've used these kits before (for Amber's adorable son), and they are so easy and fun. Don't you want to embroider a tea towel with a gnome? Or a pillowcase with a pirate?

I like how Lorelei's name came out in the tattoo font. I'd do the stars on the other one differently next time, but I still love the message. (And I don't think Paula minded my little writing dig - hee hee - I couldn't resist!)

In other news . . .

I've been sick for the last week, and I've spent way too much time online. But look at all the cool stuff I found!




My hero(ine), J.K. Rowling gave an incredible, inspirational speech at Harvard last week. For the video, MP3, and transcript, go here. I think it takes a lot of guts to talk about failure and the power of imagination to HARVARD.

I love her!

I also found out about a COOL NEW MOVIE, The Duchess. Keira Knightley! Ralph Fiennes! PERIOD COSTUMES!! Why didn't I get the memo sooner?


I assume the lemonade (bottle of urine?) is NOT in the film.


And if you're a fan of costuming like I am, you should check out this website, in particular, the glorious Marie Antoinette page. My heart explodes with joy every time I look through it.




My next novel - which hopefully I'll get to start in July! - has quite a bit of Versailles fashion inspiration involved. I love the crazy wigs and giant dresses and total disregard for practicality.

Okay, and how cool is this? Parrots never cease to amaze me. (I've actually got a parrot in my next novel too. Can you tell I'm ready to move on? Sheesh.)

Lastly, I laughed out loud at this Onion article, "Michel Gondry Entertained For Days By New Cardboard Box." And, YES, I'm a huge Gondry fan.




Enough wasting time. Back to writing! The current novel will never get finished unless I pry myself away from here long enough to write it.

Which is too bad. I'm still looking for the little writing elves to finish it up for me. I know they're around here somewhere. Maybe hiding in my attic? Underneath my weeping cherry tree? In my sock drawer?

Must keep looking. Never give up hope!

6.06.2008

Recommended Read: Suite Scarlett + Upcoming Picks



How have I not mentioned this yet? I bought Suite Scarlett the day Maureen Johnson announced on her hee-larious blog it was for sale and DEVOURED it.

I. Loved. This. Book.

If you've never read MJ before, you're missing out. Her novels are fun, fun, fun, and filled with literary substance goodness, so you won't feel guilty later (you know what I mean -- those books you LOVE but are afraid to admit you like because they're total candy, and I'm not talking about an organic 70% dark chocolate bar, but more like a Whatchamacallit.)

Suite Scarlett is my favorite MJ novel yet. Scarlett Martin lives in a NYC hotel, but not in an Eloise kind of way. Her family owns the Hopewell, a small struggling hotel with fabulous art deco architecture and one loopy summer guest.

And, of course, like all my favorite books, THERE IS A CUTE BOY.

Did you not see this coming? Shame on you.

Spencer Martin is an actor of the Buster Keaton physical, slapstick variety (be still my heart!), and he gets work -- get this -- as a unicyclist in a 1920s silent film type stage production of Hamlet.

OH YEAH.

The only reason Spencer did not make my Hottest Hotties list was because, well, Spencer is her brother. And I was semi-disturbed with myself by how often I wanted them to hook up. Which doesn't make HIM any less hot, it just makes me, well, perverted?

Or something like that.

The excellent news is that Suite Scarlett is the first in a new series. I can't wait for more.


Read this if you like:
Funny books with I-Wanna-Be-Her-Friend protagonists and SUPER HOT BOYS ON UNICYCLES.

If you like this, read: Girl at Sea by Maureen Johnson and Dream Factory by Brad Barkley & Heather Hepler


-----

In other news, how dull has cinema been this year? I haven't felt like myself lately. Usually I'm all, "Movies movies movies movies," but there has been NADA for me to talk about. The best film so far was Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day and that was months ago.


Lee Pace, the best reason to see Miss Pettigrew.


Gah. I am suffering.

Nearly all of my favorite directors (Danny Boyle, Tim Burton, Pedro Almodovar, Wes Anderson, Alfonso Cuaron, Sofia Coppola, etc) had films in the last year or two, which means DROUGHT CITY for now.

I only have a teeny-weeny list of Looking Foward Tos:




Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince: HARRY!!! Because y'all know I'm an HP nerd.

Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist: Love the book, love Michael Cera.

The Dark Knight: 'Cause Heath Ledger's Joker is creepy as hell.

Priceless: What girl doesn't want to be Audrey Tautou? Too cute. This should be coming to the Fine Arts Theater in the next few weeks.

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2: Okay, as a Cinema Geek, it's embarrassing to admit this, but I adored the first one -- America Ferrara made me bawl my eyes out -- and I adore the books. If this gets terrible reviews, I'll wait until DVD, but I really, really hope it's good tween fun.

Blindness : Jose Saramago's novel was mind-blowing, and um - Gael Garcia Bernal is in it. So, you know.

Rudo y Cursi: I don't know if we'll get this in the states this year, but it's Gael again (happy sigh!) and he's teamed back up with Y Tu Mama Tambien costar & best friend in-real-life Diego Luna. PLUS it's directed by Alfonso Cuaron's brother, Carlos Cuaron. I have Very High Hopes here.

And, despite my reservations, Twilight. (Enough said.)


Switch places with me, Bella.


On the plus side, the BOOK WORLD is FABULOUS this year! Lots of guaranteed great reads:




David Sedaris' new book, When You Are Engulfed in Flames, was just released! I'm zipping to the bookstore this weekend. I think I say this too frequently, but I mean it here -- if I could steal any writer's voice, it would be David's. If I were even a smidge as funny as he is, I'd be set for life. If you ever have a chance to see him in person, GO! He'll make you laugh 'til you cry or pee your pants or both. Simultaneously.

Stephenie Meyer's Breaking Dawn. Even though I am dismayed by something HORRIFIC in the last novel, I am still waiting for THE SCENE. If you've read her books, you know what SCENE I'm talking about. THE SCENE we've been waiting for since Twilight. And if THE SCENE is not as fabulous as I'm anticipating, you'll be looking at one depressed puppy. You'll have to scrape me from the wall where I will have thrown myself against it in despair.

Or something like that.

Juliet Marillier's Cybele's Secret. How many times do I have to recommend Wildwood Dancing before you pick up a copy? If you like fairy tales and true love and enchanted forests and dancing and vampires and mind-reading frogs, you must read it! Cybele's Secret is the sequel, and I am sooooo excited.



John Green's new novel, Paper Towns, is (apparently) so fabulous that the publishers gave him TWO covers. I love the description: "Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs back into his life--dressed like a ninja and summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge--he follows."

A ninja! Revenge!

Also check out his video on the above Amazon link. If you didn't know how funny and adorable John was, you will after watching it. "You've gotta be more like James Patterson, I mean that guy writes a book like every seven hours." (Go nerdfighters!)

John is another writer I can't believe I haven't talked about more here, because he's amazing and talented and hilarious and poignant and he TOTALLY earned his Printz for Looking for Alaska and the Printz honor for An Abundance of Katherines. If you haven't read either yet, get thee to a library, pronto.

I will keep gushing about him here until you do.

John John John. Gush gush gush.

Gush.




Speaking of authors so awesome they get two covers, Neil-FREAKING-Gaiman's The Graveyard Book is coming out in September. In his own words: "It's a book about life and death and making families. It has ghouls in it, and the hounds of God, and the Sleer, and the Indigo Man, and a lot of very dead people."

Sweet, huh?

I can't decide if I want the Dave McKean or the Chris Riddell cover (only available in the UK, I think). Actually, I want both.

I wonder if Jarrod would notice if there were two copies on our bookshelves? Surely he'd understand . . . I mean, he's seen how many copies of Pride & Prejudice I own. (Examples: A miniature copy in my glove compartment and a different miniature edition in my purse. You know, emergency Mr. Darcy. Just in case. And now you think I'm a freak.)


How cute is Meg?!


Also due for release (no Amazon link yet) is Meg Cabot's Princess Diaries X in December. This is the FINAL BOOK. For now, at least. So Michael will come back from Japan & Mia will have matured & they will hook up & it will be SO AWESOME.

FOURTEEN-YEAR-OLD FANGIRL SQUEAL!


What are you looking forward to?

6.01.2008

There Will Be Blood (And Milkshakes) Party

Speaking of Pie & Bedazzler parties -- last post -- my fabulous friend, Sara, recently emailed me pictures from our There Will Be Blood And Milkshakes birthday party last April.


This is only half of the milkshake ingredients. Why yes. That IS an empty box of pumpkin-flavored Jell-O pudding.


Sara and her husband, Jeff, in their campaign for Cutest Couple Ever, have the same birthday. How cool is that? And not only are they amazingly talented musicians (Sara is the greatest piano teacher EVER, and Jeff writes moving, dark country, both solo and with Creech Holler), but they are also ridiculously attractive:




See? Don't be jealous my friends are so hot.

Although, I am not sure how it happened, but ALL of my friends happen to be extremely good-looking. Really. All of them.

Which means if you're reading this, YOU must be my friend, therefore, YOU are Very Attractive too.

Congratulations! You're hot!

Anyway.

To celebrate their Big Day, we made, like, twenty milkshakes and watched There Will Be Blood. Because nothing says "Happy Birthday!" like Daniel Day Lewis bursting a vein.


"I drink your milkshake! I drink it up!"


The overall consensus was that it was good, but nothing we need to see again. The highlights for me were:

Paul Dano - weird and cool, as always
Jonny Greenwood's dark, string-heavy soundtrack
The plaid suit Daniel Day Lewis wore to the premiere:


Seriously. How awesome is that?


As far as the MILKSHAKES were concerned, Jeff won with a scrumptious peanut butter/chocolate ice cream/coffee ice cream combo.

The loser was my nasty concoction:


We may look like drunk sorority sisters, but really we're just laughing at how disgusting it is.*


It's a pretzel milkshake.

I thought, mmm, I like chocolate-covered pretzels. What about pretzels and chocolate ice cream? Gotta love that salty chocolaty combo, right?

WRONG.

Pretzels + Ice Cream = Mealy Sludge



And now you know.


* My hair is in its in-between stage here. The first time I went to Beauty Parade (gotta love a retro-themed salon), I asked for a HINT of blue. I went back only four days later because it was so awesome, I needed more! Plus, er, everyone just thought I was wearing a headband.
 


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