Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Illest Rap Commercials of the Early 90s

So I have this problem. I remember the lyrics to basically any song ever written, but I sometimes get locked out of my checking account for misremembering my ATM PIN three times in a row. Presumably because the words to "Top That" from Teen Witch are taking up too much space.

Case in point: Last week, shortly after having forgotten a close friend's birthday, I was changing S.'s diaper when I started rapping about a facial cleansing product not seen on drugstore shelves since 1994. "We got do's, we got don'ts," I told S. "Things we'll use, things we won't. To wash this face it's widely known, use Oxy's new Residon't."

I then became obsessed with finding that commercial on YouTube. And along the way I found many more hilariously ill-conceived rap ads (some of which also appear in this post from Laser Time, which I unabashedly aspire to imitate) that would make Don Draper doff his scrunch socks and gold medallions and leap from his window at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce just like in the credits.

Rappin' Rockin' Barbie
As far as word association goes, when I say "Barbie," you probably don't say "street!" or "video ho!" But yo, she is both. And I would be lying to myself and to you if I said I did not still sweat the middle girl's hat, weird cross-boob suspenders, and sweet dance moves.

Illest lyricsThis Barbie's cool from her head to her toes/'Cause she's got the most happening' clothes!

Fruity Pebbles
When cartoon cavemen start spitting rhymes about a self-described "fruity" breakfast cereal, something in the zeitgeist has gone horribly--but also kind of awesomely--awry.


Illest lyrics: I'm the master rapper and I'm here to say/I love Fruity Pebbles in a major way

Oh, dudes. This one is the best, and by best I meant worst. Like awful, please-Mayans-end-it-now worst, but not before I eat some Pringles, because yo, those pop cans are dope. P.S. I heard the David Arquette-Gerardo love child homey just called Kanye West and asked for his glasses back. OH SNAP.

Illest lyrics: Chips in bags got busted pieces/Brings you down with all their greases

McDonald's/Chicken McNuggets
I know I should be asking myself, Is this racist? But instead, I am asking, Why do Chicken Nuggets all have crossed eyes? And also, how do they put shirts on if they have no arms?


 Illest lyrics: We like this rap/It really rocks/But we'd rather jump/In the barbecue sauce! 

Reynold's Wrap
This is genius. I mean, WRAP. RAP. UMA. OPRAH. It's what we call a "no-brainer." (Which is more than I can say for these lyrics, which clearly took someone at least 3 minutes to write.)

Illest lyrics: Takes the cold/Takes the heat/From casseroles/To dinner meat

This one doesn't have any original rapping, but it is awesome and I totally remember watching this on real TV.

Illest lyrics: N/A. But the "Proper!" at the end is pretty sweet.

Side note: Um. He also did spots for Taco Bell and KFC. You will not be sorry if you watch them. Especially when he literally parachutes to Taco Bell with his gold Hammer pants. 

Oxy Residon't (fast-forward to 7:38)

Thanks to some Facebook crowdsourcing, I finally found my holy acne rap grail. It's buried in this amazing time capsule of a YouTube video. I highly recommend cracking a Zima and watching the whole thing.

Anyway, Residon't, I think we can agree, is basically the worst name for a consumer product of all time. But damn if this commercial didn't win me over with its lip-synching crimp-haired girls in Blossom hats and its Ryder Strong lookalike leading man, all floppy bangs and bedroom eyes. No zits, though. Because those shits got OXYCUTED. Truth.

Illest lyrics: Residue is a don't/That soapy goo/That oily film/That stuff's taboo

Kris Kross for Sprite (eternal gratitude to Mandy for remembering this one)

What's better than a refreshing lemon-lime carbonated beverage? Two tween rappers wearing their own branded sweatshirts and dancing on what looks like a construction site at a house party and making the tag line "I like the Sprite in you" sound like a phrase that requires a fist bump.

Illest lyrics: Understand the Kross Kris/Drinks the crazy, crazy twist of unexpectedness/That you should never miss

Polly-O String Cheese (RECREATION)

Okay, so once upon a time there was a Polly-O String Cheese commercial with a rapping parrot. You will have to take my word for this, as I could not find it on YouTube, no matter what embarrassing word searches I tried. So I decided to perform it for you, because it needs to be heard.

Picture me in a gold chain and backwards baseball cap. Also, I'm a parrot. And I am really passionate about individually packaged cheese phalluses. Ready? Okay:

Illest lyrics: SO MANY. But if forced to choose: 
 In the dairy section there's a snack that's chillin/For all us homeboys to taste what's illin'

Aaaaaaand I think we're done here.

That's a rap, folks.

(Now picture me in metallic parachute pants being dragged off a stage by an old-timey cane.)


Monday, May 21, 2012

I Love You For Condimental Reasons

Lately, I've noticed a troubling trend. Whenever I ask Jeff to fetch or prepare food for me--because I am being used as a human Bowflex by our freakishly strong offspring who also likes to eat my hair--I have to give him orders that make me sound like a disgusting, downmarket version of Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally:

On coffee:

"Put in A LOT of Half & Half, okay? More than you think would anyone would want. Try to achieve a cup of Half & Half with a subtle coffee flavor. And don't skimp on the sugar. Give me four packets, and if they only have the big pour containers, turn it upside-down and count to ten, and make sure no lumps are obstructing the opening."

On sandwiches:

"I want more mayonnaise than the FDA advises a single person to consume at one sitting. Put on an amount that makes you recoil and then add another teaspoon. Also I want the cheese layer to be thicker than the meat layer by a ratio of 2 to 1."

On fries:

"It should look like you're making a Carrie diorama, only the people are fries and the blood is ketchup. I want the splatter to reach all four corners of the container. They should need to call Dexter."

What can I say? I'm passionate about my cuisine.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Sister, Sister

I just totally made you think of Tia and Tamera Mowry, didn't I? How long has it been since that happened? Who needs time travel when I can instantly transport you back to 1994? In yo face, Doc Brown!

But that pop culture reference was really just an attempt to be clever* as I pay homage to MY sister, who you all know and love as Sister--or, more recently, Aunt--Zoe. For today is her birthday.

*Except, I just realized that I used the EXACT SAME title for last year's birthday blog post. So... let's agree that next year's post will be "Sister Act," and will feature ill-advised parody gospel lyrics, okay? Whoopi's excited:

Sorry. Back to Zoe.

Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeey girl. Hey.
Isn't she pretty? I love her.

I have loved her ever since I (sort of) watched her being born 26 years ago.

I made this exact same face when I was in labor with S. I call it "Nermyl gets an enema."
But dudes, for real, she was such a cute kid. She was always so much louder and funnier and braver than I was. This face (that, as always, I want to eat--nomnomnom) encapsulates Zoe's spirit:

My dad is wearing a shirt that says, "Midwifery is blooming." You are not at all surprised.
I'm not going to get mushy, because Zoe would not stand for that in a public forum, but I will give you my:

Top 10 Reasons My Sister Is the Best

  1. As a toddler, she called McDonald's "E-I-O." Because she was a BABY GENIUS.
  2. Once when I was a teenager, we got in a fight and I yelled "Fuck you!" at her, because I am classy, and she screwed up her little face and she shot back, "Do you even know what that means? That means sex you."
  3. She is the best in crisis situations. You have a bathtub filled with vomit, you skip the plumber and you call Zoe. Not that this has ever happened to me.
  4. She cannot have a pet because there are too many prescription medication pills and X-acto blades embedded in her floorboards. Her life is so much more exciting than mine.
  5. She has a much cooler tattoo than I do. It's on her ribcage in a place you will only see if you're in her autobiography. It's perfect. I'm jealous.
  6. In 26 years, I have never heard her sing, or seen her really dance. At this point I think she abstains as a point of pride. This is especially impressive seeing as the rest of the family will belt out a song with zero provocation, and dance to anything, even "My Humps" at some stranger's bat mitzvah.
  7. As a part-time nanny, she carries a stroller up and down subway steps in wedge-heeled boots about four times a day. The stroller, the toddler in it, and her giant purse full of Diet Pepsi and Pall Malls weigh as much as she does. So she is basically Superman.
  8. She sends me picture messages detailing how she fails at wearing shirts.
  9. She wears the tiniest pants you have ever seen. They are like the size of the overalls your old Sylvanian Families squirrel son wore before your dog licked all the fuzz off of his head and made him look like some plastic gingham road kill version of Terminator.
    10. She's the wisest and most thoughtful and most kick-ass and most beautiful person I know.

Also, honorable mention, she once dressed up for Halloween as a contestant on Toddlers & Tiaras.

I tell her that if she ever loses her shit and kills someone, THIS is the photo that will run on the cover of The New York Post. You know I'm right. There is a reason your Facebook photos need to be set to private.


P.S. As a special birthday present to Zoe and personal favor to me, can you please Ask Sister Zoe some shit? Her advice will seriously blow your mind.


Tuesday, May 8, 2012

All About My (Listen To Your) Mother

This Sunday I performed at the JCC in Manhattan as part of the first-ever production of Listen to Your Mother in New York.

Don't I look like I'm filibustering before Congress? "And that, sirs, is what IHOP stands for."
(Longtime blog readers will remember that I got my start as "Sheep/Triangle" in the Emmanuel Midtown Y's Preschool Winter Play, so I think we all can agree that my acting career has really come full circle.)

Anyway, Listen to Your Mother (LTYM for short) was started by blogger Ann Imig in 2010 as a way to "give Mother's Day a microphone." Or, as I've been explaining it to people, "It's like the Vagina Monologues, except about moms instead of vaginas. But there are still some vaginas."

The incredible cast & crew! Top row, from left: Associate Producer Holly Fink, Eve Lederman, Ilana Wiles, Kathy Curto, Deborah Goldstein, Howard Margulies (no vagina!!), Cynthia Bastidas, Abby Sher, Alysia Reiner, Emcee Extraordinaire Rene Syler. Bottom row, from left: Patty Chang Anker, Producer Varda Steinhardt, Director Amy Wilson, LTYM Founder and Guru Ann Imig, Kirsten Kovaleski Piccini, moi, Kathy Kate Mayer, Jonny Schremmer, and Estelle Sobel Erasmus.
The experience of being a part of this show was truly transformative. I know I was kind of glib when I announced my casting, but what I never told you was that I got this... feeling when I first saw the call for auditions. You know how people always tell you about the day they met their husband or wife, and they thought to themselves, I'm gonna marry that guy/gal, so help me Jesus, and you try to will your eyes not to roll, because that kind of thing just does not happen to people who do not live in Nicholas Sparks' subconscious mind? Well. As soon as I saw the LTYM NYC announcement, I just kind of knew I was meant to be a part of it. Which is not to say I wasn't nervous at the audition, or that I didn't convince myself that I had been William Hung-caliber terrible as soon as I walked out of the audition room. But when I found out I got it, it felt right. It's not often we find ourselves in precisely the place we need to be, and that's exactly where I was this weekend, in the company of a group of incredible women (and one man) who inspire and amaze me*.

*And you all know what a superficial bitch I can be, so you know I love them for really real.

A few of my insanely talented costars (pics courtesy of Deborah Goldstein):

Me and Patty Chang Anker--who went to my high school! Small world.
The hilarious Kate Mayer.
The glorious Cynthia Bastidas.
Powerhouse producer and performer Varda Steinhardt.
Kirsten Kovaleski Piccini--possibly THE nicest woman on the planet--with Patty, the second or third nicest, depending on who you ask.
Kirsten's platform heels, signed by the cast.
Director and performer Amy Wilson making us all cry with a pre-show pep talk. The amazon on the left is the fabulous SAG award-winning actress Alysia Reiner.
Amy and Kathy Curto, who makes me long to be Italian.
Ace in the hole Jonny Schremmer.
Mothers superior Ann Imig and Deborah Goldstein.
...and a Muppet who somehow wandered over from Sesame Street.
Please also check out the work of Eve Lederman, Ilana Wiles, Howard Margulies, Abby Sher, Rene Syler and Estelle Sobel Erasmus. Every single story that was told on Sunday was so funny and powerful that somehow I lost my judgment pants. I even said to some of my costars nervously before the show, "There aren't even any pieces that I secretly think suck!" Yes, Terms of Endearment was basically written about me.

I think my reading went well*. I gave myself a Jack Donaghy-style pep talk before I took the podium ("It's WINNING time, you magnificent son of a bitch! Make mommy proud of her big boy because he's the BEST!!!"), and people laughed a lot. I didn't slur any words or get a nosebleed. My boobs didn't start leaking, or fall out of my top. As the shortest member of the cast, it's possible people could only see my eyebrows, but I plucked them, so they were ready for their spotlight.

S. wasn't allowed to come to the performance because of his tendency to yell and throw up on people and things, but he met me at the after party to give the photographers his best smize.

The best part of this whole thing might be the fact that I get to hang a poster that says "LISTEN TO YOUR MOTHER" in giant bold type in his room.

*The YouTube video of my performance will be up sometime in the next month or two, at which time you can bet your sweet bippy I'll be posting it and demanding that you make it go viral. Think of it as a Charlie Bit My Finger, but with just a touch more vagina.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Choose Your Own Infomercial Adventure!

I asked, you answered, and I won $300 for sending traffic over to NickMom!

This is what I've been doing for the past few days (and bless you, YouTube nation, for taking the time to upload a video of this clip repeating and repeating):

So now you need to tell me what crazy infomercial product I should buy with my winnings. Here are the rules:
  1. It must be relatively cheap. Momma may want a bra she can surreptitiously drink out of, but baby also needs diapers. Allegedly. (I'm giving S. the side-eye right now, because I've seen him poop on command, and by "on command" I mean "as soon as I remove his diaper." I thought it would shoot out like silly string, but actually it's kind of like a finicky soft-serve machine that stops and starts. This is what science class looks like in the School of Life.)
  2. It must be at least sort of dumb. If I wanted something practical, I'd get drunk and order a monogrammed whiskey decanter from Pottery Barn, okay?
  3. I must be able to purchase it online. I don't like talking to customer service representatives. And it's worse if they're automated. It is a true story that I once called "Julie" from Amtrak a stupid whore.
Nominate a product in the comments and I'll choose the one that sounds like the most fun to test-drive. I'll blog the experience regardless, but if I pick your recommendation I'll also send you my Shake Weight, because an invisible cardio handjob is a gift that really should keep on giving.

And if you want this to be a monthly thing, please please go click up my links again:

I Wish I Could Be Like: Mrs. Robinson 
Paltrow-Martins Seek Babysitter
Top 9 Reasons Sleep is Overrated
Top 9 Rejected Sitcoms With 'Bitch' in the Title

Me, Jeff, S. and our future Super Bass-O-Matic thank you!

Friday, May 4, 2012

I Went to the Philippines Almost Two Months Ago and All You Got Was This Stupid Blog Post

So, yeah... remember when I made that huge deal about flying halfway around the globe and how I was going to update you, like, tout de suite?




[Whistles, tumbleweeds roll by, Brangelina gets engaged]

We went.

I think at first I was just super jet-lagged, and also I (possibly) broke a small(-ish) toe, which brought me great distress. But also I was kind of embarrassed I'd made such a big deal about the 16-hour flights.

Because S.?


He was SO GOOD. He either slept or quietly ate almost all the way there and back. There were people sitting behind us who did not even know we had a baby with us, that's how good he was.

Well, he had his moments. Also I had to throw out a soiled onesie in the bathroom trash can. (Sometimes I wonder, am I a mom or a Keith Richards roadie?)
Anyway, we made it. This is not a Sixth Sense-y thing when I've been a ghost this whole time. SPOILER.

It gets better. Our hotel? Was a Filipino Melrose Place.

Not pictured: Dramatic wig-removal.
S. wasted no time in lounging by the central pool in the hopes of engaging in bitchy gossip and petty betrayals.

Men's Health, eat your heart out.
Jeff and I, on the other hand, wasted no time in hitting up the $2 happy hour.

Does this jet lag make us look really fucking tired?
The next morning, I ate my own weight in tropical fruit (my colon nonetheless went on strike for about 5 days, but that's a blog for another day never), and we headed off to the beach, riding shotgun on a tricked-out tricycle:

Yes, mom, there are seat belts. You just... can't see them. It's the angle. Or the light. Or something.
You're not supposed to drink the water in the Philippines, which is funny, because the ocean looks better than what I filter through my Brita back home.

The pool water, however, is probably sterilized by the communal pee, as all pools are, so drink to your heart's content!

I was probably drunk in these photos. Hell, I'm a little drunk right now. The point is, my boobs are pretty big at the moment and I need to celebrate them in photo essay form before they deflate and/or drop to my knees.

Where was I? Nowhere? Great, that leads me to longganisa, these bright red Filipino breakfast sausages that I ate far too many of, despite Jeff's telling me they were probably made of domesticated animal penis.

You know what, I'm just not going to Google it.
Sorry. Let's have a visual palate cleanser.

Still penises, but cuter.
But the whole reason we were there, the reason we flew and ferried and drank rum in the afternoon for no reason was to celebrate the wedding of Aileen and Ryan. S. was the coin bearer, which, it turns out, looks a lot like a tiny sailor wearing miniature Hammer pants.

But even a supercute, superfat American baby in a little silk diaphragm cap can't steal the show from a bride who enters the church like she's starring in a Guns N' Roses video:

That's a car behind her with ITS HIGH BEAMS ON. I'll give you a minute to collect yourselves.

And Aileen and Ryan weren't the only ones striking a Kodak-ready pose of eternal love....

What is butt? Does that count as second base? Or is it a foul? Does it matter, when you have such an excellent photobomb?
I'll leave you with a postcard S. made to send to family and friends while I was busy trying to make the Running Man "a thing" at the wedding reception...

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