People Who Are Younger Than Me

And More Successful.

Sometimes you just need to wallow in self-misery. Let's blame Facebook!

Sarah. My friend just announced on facebook she has completed her MBA and is now working on her masters in Software Engineering. What the hell? She’s also married with two cute dogs and a nice husband and a really nice house. She has no student debt. How is this possible? This is a chick who spent the first year after college emailing me daily how much she hated her job and spent most afternoons googling how to become a nurse or stay at home mom. Now she’s somewhere in Middle Management, earning a lot of money and just being a badass. How did this happen? Where did I miss my opportunity?

Sam. Sam should be at least a decade older than me. Like Sarah, she has the nice husband and house. And the adultness only starts there - She and her husband are participating in marathons and training for triathalons. Having a friggin’ kid. And their house - it is such an adult house. Sure, it’s big. I mean, they’re both engineers. But more than that, it is nice. So well decorated. Everything looks like it came from a magazine. How do these people accomplish this before 30?

Randy. Randy went a very different direction than me - she got pregnant while in college and dropped out and became a nurse. Since then, she’s gotten married and had three more kids. I don’t understand how she can be the same age as me. First, her kids are adorable. Second, based solely on Facebook, she is the best mom ever. She’s always doing fun crafts with them, taking cute pictures. Her son likes to have his nails painted like his sisters. She’s even progressive! If I were ever become a mom, I would want to be one like that. How does she do all this and still be my age? I struggle to take care of my cat. I’m impressed that all four kids are alive, let alone adorable and well taken care of and happy.

Tim B. I recently interviewed this kid for an internship at my company. Neither my colleague nor I felt qualified to interview this guy. He created a non-profit when he was a sophomore in high school, that is still going. He worked at Intel and Stephen Hawking commented on his project. He was rejected from our school three times and kept re-applying. He studied hard once he got there - he said his college GPA was better than his high school. It’s an engineering school!

Jennifer Lawrence. She is three and a half years younger than me. She has an Oscar! And two more nominations! And while I don’t disagree that she is talented, no one should have won anything for Silver Linings Playlist. I mean, seriously. It was a glorified rom-com. But good job on the awards and the Hunger Games franchise.

Taylor Swift. She is three years younger than me. For years, I resisted her charms, thinking her stupid and her music lame. Then 1989 came out and I became a stan. Every one of her songs is now on my phone. I have a Taylor Swift Pandora station at work. It’s a sickness. But music aside, girl is damn good at business and public image. Her Tumblr, Instagram, and Twitter accounts are flawless and should be studied by all other celebrities attempting social media. She’s made being a cat lady (relatively) cool. She wears whatever she wants and does it well. She’s built an empire, knew what she wanted to do at the age of 14. And writes her own music! That wins Grammy's! Who can’t get behind that? She also has a very cute New York apartment with a closet full of very cute clothes and has cute friends and cute cats. It’s exhausting.

Keirnan Shipke. I am not going to look up her age because she’s probably at least a decade younger than me. Yet she still has at least twice the class and integrity. And she’s made Sally one of the most interesting characters on Mad Men. Can I be Keirnan when I grow up?

Jessica Williams.  I really like what she says the majority of the time and she manages not to make an ass of herself on twitter (*cough*trevornoah*cough*). Outside of The Daily Show, she has a few respectable parts, including a recurring character on a recent season of HBO’s GIRLS. But then I realized she was three years younger than me... This is crazy impressive. How did this happen? How did she accomplish this? She joined TDS when she was twenty-two, the youngest correspondent ever. And today, despite still being one of the younger correspondents, she is by far the best. Just look at her recent Beyonce defense!

Malala. She has a Nobel prize. She’s brilliant and passionate and has made the world a better place. I also primarily included her so this list wouldn’t just be friends from high school and celebrities...

Mark Zuckerberg. Okay, he is three years older than me. But what had he accomplished by my age? Literally everything. I’ve missed my chance to change the world and become super rich and have a David Fincher movie made out of my life. Also, this means he was younger than me when The Social Network came out. I rest my case. A fucking David Fincher movie! With Justin Timberlake!

 

 

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Award season! We kicked off with the Golden Globes on Sunday. But it's the big leagues now - the Oscar nominations were announced yesterday. #TeamLeo.

This go around, I'm more focused on the Tony's (nominations announced April 29th, Hamilton for everything, of course), but the movies! I haven't been as diligent a film-goer as I usually am, but I definitely intend to see as many as possible before Oscar night!

BEST ORIGINAL SONG:

“Earned It” 50 Shades of Grey

“Manta Ray” Racing Extinction

“Simple Song #3" Youth

“Til it Happens to You” The Hunting Ground

“Writing’s On the Wall” Spectre

And here is the reason we can say 50 Shades is an Oscar nominee. Also, I thought we all agreed "Writing's On the Wall" was terrible, nothing compared to "Skyfall?" Excited for the this category next year - Moana dominates and Lin-Manuel Miranda finally gets the 'O' to complete his EGOT.

BEST COSTUME DESIGN:

Carol

Cinderella

The Danish Girl

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

Well, Mad Max was certainly cool, though my impression was The Revenant was primarily just animal skins? While the trailers for Danish and Carol look lovely, I'm going with Cinderella. Those gowns were gorgeous.

BEST DOCUMENTARY — FEATURE:

Amy

Cartel Land

The Look of Silence

What Happened, Miss Simone?

Winter on Fire

Amy, right?

BEST MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING:

Mad Max: Fury Road

The 100-Year Old Man

The Revenant

Mad Max for sure. It hasn't even been a year and those looks are already iconic.

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT:

Ave Maria

Day One

Everything Will Be Ok

Stutter

And now we flip a coin...

BEST SOUND EDITING:

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Sicario

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Star Wars. It's gotta win something.

BEST SOUND MIXING:

Bridge of Spies

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

What's the difference between Mixing and Editing? Does it ever go to different films? Star Wars again.

BEST FILM EDITING:

The Big Short

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

Spotlight

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Definitely Mad Max. Those action scenes were incredible and needed 'just right' editing to be understandable. 

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE:

Bridge of Spies

Carol

The Hateful Eight

Sicario

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Star Wars? Or maybe Carol?

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN:

Bridge of Spies

The Danish Girl

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Let's go with The Martian on this one. They had to create a whole planet!

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS:

Ex Machina

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Ex Machina. It was the type of movie where the effects were so good you didn't even realize you were looking at effects.

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM:

Anomalisa

Boy and the World

Inside Out

Shaun the Sheep

When Marnie Was There

Inside Out, obviously.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY:

Carol

The Hateful Eight

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

Sicario

The Revenant. Natural lighting!

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY:

Bridge of Spies

Ex Machina

Inside Out

Spotlight

Straight Outta Compton

Ex Machina, again. This is Straight Outta Compton's only nom but apparently there is some drama over the writers, so never mind. Also, I think it's very telling that neither Tarantino or Sorkin are represented here (or I guess Sorkin's is adapted?).

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY:

The Big Short

Brooklyn

Carol

The Martian

Room

The Big Short should win something!

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM:

Embrace of the Serpent

Mustang

Son of Saul

Theeb

A War

Reese Witherspoon told me to pick Mustang here.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR:

Christian Bale, The Big Short

Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight

Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies

Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Tom Hardy, The Revenant

I was hoping to see the little dude from Room. The kid has class. Otherwise... I guess Stallone?

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS:

Rooney Mara, Carol

Rachel McAdams, Spotlight

Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight

I hope not Winslet. I like her but she deserves her second Oscar to be for something memorable. Let's go with Mara, who apparently has more of a leading actress role.

BEST ACTRESS:

Cate Blanchett, Carol

Brie Larson, Room

Jennifer Lawrence, Joy

Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years

Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

Brie all the way! Also, I highly suggest following her on Instagram if you aren't already. She is a treasure.

BEST ACTOR:

Bryan Cranston, Trumbo

Matt Damon, The Martian

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant

Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs

Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl

Leo, of course. It's a pity he isn't winning in a stronger year, but that's probably why he's the front running. Nice to see Damon nominated.

BEST DIRECTOR:

Adam McKay, The Big Short

George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road

Alejandro G. Inarritu, The Revenant

Lenny Abrahamson, Room

Tom McCarthy, Spotlight

No Spielberg or Scott? Let's go with Miller, why not. Revenant might be sweeping awards so far but Inarritu just won one of these.

BEST PICTURE:

The Big Short

Bridge of Spies

Brooklyn

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Room

Spotlight

The Revenant, I guess? The show is February 28th. So many things to see before then!

We'll Never Be Royals

Am I a hypocrite? Can I be a royal watcher and simultaneously despise the Kardashians?

My cousin's daughter was a Princess, NOT Anna from  Frozen,  for Halloween. She did sing "Let It Go" all night though...

My cousin's daughter was a Princess, NOT Anna from Frozen, for Halloween. She did sing "Let It Go" all night though...

A few weeks ago, I was in Germany for work. While there, I picked up a few German gossip magazines for my German instructor in Indianapolis. She isn't a fan of the gossip magazines in the States - she wants to know about Queen Letizia of Spain or Princess Victoria of Sweden, not Angelina Jolie and Jennifer Aniston. So I picked up a few for her and read them on the train to the airport, as some German language practice. Also, on the trip, I read Royal We, which is basically Will and Kate fanfiction.

Those magazines, that book, and being in Europe did it: I was hooked. Suddenly I found myself looking at the Google News Royals section, actually reading the Go Fug Yourself Royals Roundup on Fridays rather than skimming for pretty outfits. Don't get me wrong - I still enjoyed the pretty outfits (I love this dress Kate wore to throw boots at something) but also the history and pageantry of all of it. There a few fun Kate blogs I've started following. Royalista has a nice general news roundup. There is an entire website devoted to hats! Finally, if you need to kill a weekend or two, just start exploring the Wiki entries on their families. Just check out QEII's page - those arms! The history! That family tree! Also, The Queen was pretty great, right? Jezebel has a nice rundown of some crazy. I'm not ready to move to the EU and start writing about them or anything but it's interesting and a nice distraction from the depressing news (aka, all the rest of it). And Vogue just posted the 18 top royal weddings - Grace! Diana! Kate!

However, I feel the need to validate these feelings. Because I really dislike the Kardashians and comparisons between the monarchies and the Kardashians are everywhere. In fact, in a recent discussion at lunch between two colleagues and myself, we posited that if the States had a monarchy, the Kardashians wouldn't be as famous. Hell, even if the Kennedy's were still in the limelight. We, as a society, need something we can hold onto together. There's also this West Wing episode that suggests it would be easier for the President if we had monarchies. For example, both President Obama and his wife hung out with Prince Harry when he was in the States a few weeks ago. If we had a monarchy, Obama could have spent that time arguing with Congress and Mrs. Obama could have done something with gardening while the monarch entertained the prince.

That stuff aside, what is the similarity between monarchies and the Kardashians? Also, is it okay for me to suddenly look forward to the Friday Royals Roundups while also looking down my noses at the Kardashians? Or should I just admit I'm a hypocrite and take my guilty pleasures where I can?

First, there's the obvious. They're both famous for being famous, their job basically entails showing up looking nice to things, and paparazzi follow them everywhere. But there's the legal stuff on the monarchy. And the history. But the distaste of the Kardashians might be akin to the anti-monarchy movement in Europe.

To make me feel better, at least the House of Windsor supports charities! While the Kardashians are shilling apps and dietary supplements, the royals are patronages for saving kids and wounded veterans. And the occasional Bond film.

But in the end, fuck it, guilty pleasures are guilty pleasures. Life is too short to be against an entire family. If you like the Kardashians, go nuts Enjoy the new season of the show! I'm going to continue to avoid them and look forward to Harry's trip to Africa and the Will and Katie's trip to India, now without guilt. To each their own.