Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Guilty Pleasures: The Olive Garden

It's popular to make fun of The Olive Garden. The cheesy commercials featuring friends and family getting together for a meal, and the tag line, "When you're here, you're family," almost demand it. There was an episode of The Bachelor with Andrew Firestone when when of the bachelorettes confided that her favorite chain restaurant was The Olive Garden much to his disgust. Yes, I could probably have better Italian food at home  if I opened a jar of Bertolli's and a package of pasta, but I wouldn't get unlimited breadsticks and salad, now would I?

Apparently Olive Garden has a culinary institute in Tuscany where they and all their chefs to be trained in Italian cuisine. Um, I've been to Italy and I don't remember having food there like they serve at the Olive Garden. Frankly, there are other chain restaurants that I like better, P.F. Chang's (why oh why do we have a Chevy's in NY but no P.F. Chang's?), Bonefish Grill, Legal Seafoods but the Olive Garden is like comfort food. You know what you're going to get when you get there. The first time I went to the Olive Garden in NY, I couldn't believe I was actually eating there considering how many great Italian restaurants we have in New York. It was after an RWA NYC meeting. The food wasn't that great, but hanging out with my friends was. I've only been back once, but again, I had an awesome time, plus the pasta was only $9.95 which is mega cheap for New York.

So, despite the cheesy commercials and the so-so food, I will continue to eat occasionally at The Olive Garden.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Olympics on My Mind

Congratulations to Evan Lysaceck for winning the gold medal in men's figure skating. But how much does it suck that the silver medalist decides to talk trash about you the next day? Evgeny Plushenko, the Russian skater, didn't mention Evan by name, but clearly the fact that he feels that he should have won because he performed a quad, and feels that any man who doesn't, isn't a real man was pointed towrds him. Frankly, I think this is poor sportsmanship on Plushenko's part. I guess manners and diplomacy aren't taught to Russian figure skaters. Sure, I know he's disappoiinted that he didn't fulfill his goal of beiing a two-time Olympic champion like Dick Button. It's the risk that a skater takes when he comes back after several years off. Sometimes it works out (Gordeeva and Grinkov) and sometimes it doesn't. Brian Boitano was like 8th in the 1994 Olympics and Torvill & Dean only won a bronze medal at that same games. But excuse if I don't feel sorry for a guy who has 3 Olympic medals. What makes it even worse was that he congratulated Evan on his victory, and was complimentary, until the next day at his press conference. Evan, on his part, was quite gracious talking to Bob Costas on Friday about the whole controversy. It's clear to see who is the real sportsman.

I've heard talk that the Olympics are fixed, which I think is just ridiculous. The scoring was really tight between Evan and Plushenko. What's interesting is that Evan's technical score was higher than Plushenko's despite Plushenko pulling out thequad. Let's talk about the quad for a second. Men have been attempting this jump since Kurt Browning landed one in the World Championships back in 1989, but still only a few men have landed the jump cleanly in competition. No one is doing it consistently. Plushenko feels that for skaters not do be doing the quad is setting the sport back. I disagree, it's a difficult jump, and many skaters have been injured attempting it. Evan Lysaceck decided not to do the quad because of a foot injury. Evan is not just any skater, the man is a World Champion for crying out loud.

Figure skating is not all about jumps. The reason that I, and I'm sure so many fans, watch it is because it combines artistry and athleticism. The long program in figure skating for men is almost 5 minutes long, so a lot more has to be done besides just doing 8 or 9 jumps. There are spins and footwork that need to be just as technically precise as the jumps. No one wants to see someone who just jumps and has no artistry, it's boring (I'm talking to you Surya Bonaly) and it doesn't make a complete skater. That's what the judges were looking for Thursday night and why Evan won over Plushenko. If artistry won out over atheletics, than Johnny Weir would have been up on that podium instead of stuck down in 6th place. That was a crime frankly.

Evan also took advantage of the new scoring system that rewards skaters for doing difficult moves in the second half of their program, where they are more tired. Most of Plushenko's jumps were in the first half of his program,and Evan in the second, so he received bonus points. Plushenko and his couch had ample opportunity to take advantage of the new system and they didn't. End of Story.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday Real Estate Porn - LaLaurie House

Just read on Luxist that one of the houses that Nicolas Cage owned in New Orleans is for sale again. The LaLaurie house is at 1100 Royal Street in the Quarter and it has quite the Scandalous past which I will probably write about over at my other blog Scandalous Women. Delphine LaLaurie, who owned it, was found to have kept her slaves chained in her attic in wretched conditions. It wasn't discovered until there was a fire in the house. A mob demanded vengeance but the LaLaurie's just moved to Mandeville where Delphine died in 1842. The house is considered to be haunted. It's on the market again for $.2.9M but I would suggest that you have someone come in and burn some sage or a seance or something before moving in just in case.

You can read more abou tthe house here.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Hump Day Hotties: Olympic Edition

2-Time Olympic Silver Medalist Elvis Stojko

2009 World Champion Evan Lysaceck

1998 Olympic Champion Ilya Kulik

Canadian Champion Patrick Chan

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Guilty Pleasures: National Treasure/National Treasure: Book of Secrets

I feel guilty even typing these words, but one of my newest guilty pleasures are the two movies, National Treasure, and National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets starring Nicolas Cage. Remember when Nic Cage won the Oscar for Leaving Las Vegas? Before he decided to spend all his money on expensive real estate and comic books? Before he married a waitress half his age and named his son after Superman? Or before that when he married Lisa Marie Presley because he has an Elvis fixation? Whatever happened to that Nic Cage?

That's a topic for another blog post. I remember when I went to see the first National Treasure movie with a good friend of mine. It was so over the top cheesy that I couldn't believe it. And we paid full price to see it. But it had Sean Bean in, and I'll pretty much watch him read the phone book. Now whenever, I see the movies on either TNT or whatever other channel they are on, I can't help myself. I will stop and watch them. I even took the second one out of the library because I was feeling down and needed to cheer myself up.

In each movie, Nic Cage has to discover something that usually has to do with an ancestor of his. In the first film archaeologist Ben Gates searches for a chest of riches rumored to have been stashed away by George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin during the Revolutionary War. The chest's whereabouts may lie in secret clues embedded in the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, and Gates is in a race to find the gold before his enemies do. In the second film, he has to clear one of his ancestor's names, who has been accused of being one of the conspirators to kill Lincoln. Also, he has to find the lost treasure of Eldorado which is conventiently located under Mount Rushmore.

I'm not sure what it is about these movies that I love so much. The fact that they make absolutely no sense when you sit down and think about them? The fact that in the first film, he has to steal the Declaration of Independence and gets way with it? Or that when he finally finds the treasure, it looks like the kind of tchotchkes that were in my grandmother's china cabinet? You know those 'antiques' that look like they come from the Franklin Mint? In the second film, he kidnaps the President of the United States, who looks like he's having a good time, and then Ben steals The Book of Secrets from the Library of Congress, not to mention that he manages to wander around both Buckingham Palace and the White House without getting caught.

In the first film, you have 2 Oscar winners, Nic Cage and Jon Voight. In the 2nd, you have Cage, Voight, Helen Mirren (as Nic Cage's mother no less), and Ed Harris (Academy Award nominee). Oh and Harvey Keitel, who plays the FBI agent on Ben's tail. Everyone looks like they are actually enjoying themselves in the films, and not just collecting a paycheck. And whoever the writers are, they do have a certain amount of knowledge about American history. It's nice to see a film about treasure hunting that involves the US and not Europe or the Middle East.

I love Diane Kruger's Abigail, who reluctantly ends up getting involved in Ben's plans. She's actually charming and funny in both of films. Both of these films have clearly be influenced by Dan Brown. Seriously they should give Dan Brown points on the film, because I have no doubt that these films wouldn't have been made if it hadn't been for The Da Vinci Code. I'm dying to know if they are going to do a 3rd film, and if they do, you just know that I will be there to see it.

Good cheesy fun, and who doesn't like cheese?

Monday, February 15, 2010

Yeah or Hell to the No: Sex with a Friend's Ex

Last Thursday, I was watching Private Practice simply because I was too lazy to lift the remote control to change the channel or to turn the TV off. Beautiful, classy and respected neo-natal surgeon Addison Montgomery has been torn between her feelings for sexy Sam (played by the delectable Taye Diggs) for weeks now. She finally told him that they can't be together because she's a 'cheater' and since she'd already cheated on her ex-husband with his best friend, she can't cheat on her best friend with her ex-husband. Of course Sam felt that Addison was just using that as an excuse, pulling back because she was afraid of having something 'real.'

This brings up that old question: is it ever okay to sleep or date a friend's ex? In Addison's case, she hasn't even asked Naomi how she feels about the whole situation, given her a chance to at least respond before dismissing Sam out of hand. Of course, at the moment, Naomi is dealing with the fact that her 15 year old daughter is pregnant by a kid whose real name is Fillmore, and getting married. So perhaps now is not the best time, but still Naomi has moved on to other relationships. Heck, she even slept with Addison's brother Archer (who cheated on her) and now she's kissing the hot billionaire who is involved with the hospital. Naomi and Sam have been divorced for awhile, and they don't seem to want to get back together. So maybe she might be okay with Addison and Sam finally getting it on.

Now sex with a friend's ex is totally different from say dating your mother's ex-boyfriend. That should always be strictly verboten, in fact it should be against the law. They do this all the time on daytime soaps and it always squeeves me out. Ryan and Erica on AMC, have no problem with the age difference, the fact that Ryan is the father of Erica's grandson, that's just plain icky.  Let's just say if you are related to the person by blood, like immediate family, you can't sleep with their ex.

But friends are a whole different story, although in a way, they are like family as well. My personal feeling is it depends on whether you knew them as a couple. If the ex is someone that she dated in high school or grade school, he should be fair game. If you knew them as a couple and you hung out with them, I would have to say no way. It's just too weird, particularly if you are still friends. Even if you are no longer friends it can be dicey. A friend of mine once started dating the ex-fiance of a mutual friend, who she was no longer friends with. When she asked me if I thought it was weird that she thought the ex-fiance was attractive, I said yes. Seriously, she had only just dumped the friend a few months before, and then to go out with her ex? It was just to incestuous for words.

Of course, some people feel that all is fair in love and war, and that if two people are attracted to each other, why not go for it, even though one person is a friend's ex. What if they are soulmates? I personally have never dated a friend's ex-boyfriend. I had a tiny crush on a friend's boyfriend when I was studying in London once, but that's as close as I've come. I have a hard enough time with the idea of dating someone that I've been friends with for years. What if that goes wrong, and we can no longer be friends? But that's the subject of another post.

So Sex with a Friend's Ex: Ever a good idea? Is it ever okay to cross that line?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Valentine's Day Movie: Enchantment

Enchantment (1948)
directed by Irving Reis
produced by Samuel Goldwyn.
based on the novel Take Three Tenses by Rumer Godden.
David Niven as General Sir Roland Dane
Teresa Wright as Lark Ingoldsby
Evelyn Keyes as Grizel Dane
Farley Granger as Pilot Officer Pax Masterson
Jayne Meadows as Selina Dane
Leo G. Carroll as Proutie, the Dane family butler
Philip Friend as Pelham Dane
Shepperd Strudwick as the Marchese Guido De Laudi

What it's about:

In World War II London, an American servicewoman named Grizel Dane pays a visit to her great uncle, General Dane, looking for a place to stay. A seemingly cranky old man who doesn't want to be disturbed from his memories, Rollo soon gives in. Extended flashbacks reveal the story of the Dane family. Rollo and his older siblings, Selina and Pelham, are introduced to Lark by their father who explains that her parents have been killed in a train accident and that she will be living with them as his ward. Selina immediately resents the newcomer who is pretty and sweet. Roland's father later dies, leaving Selina in charge of Lark, whom she treats more like a servant. Lark is being courted  a friend of Pelham's an Italian Marchese, who she meets at a dance. Pelham also unexpectedly reveals his love for her, but she does not love him. Rollo and Lark finally acknowledge their love for each other, but Selina has other plans. She has arranged for Rollo go off for a five-year mission to Afghanistan. However, Lark refuses to wait that long, living uneasily with both Selina and Pelham. Rollo decides to refuse the appointment, but Selina confronts Lark, telling her that Rollo has decided to take the job. When he does not return by the next morning, Lark is convinced and leaves to marry the Marchese.

Back in World War II, ambulance driver Grizel transports injured Pax Masterson to a hospital. Later, she is surprised to find he is Lark's nephew. While they wait for the old man to return home, Pax and Grizel become acquainted. As time goes on, they start falling in love. When Pax receives his orders, he asks her to marry him, but she refuses because of the war.  Rollo talks to Grizel and convinces her not to throw away the chance for love as he did. She runs after Pax in the middle of a bombing raid and embraces him.

Gotham Gal says:

I once had a book called Great Romantic Films and Enchantment was one of the films listed. When I saw the DVD in the library, I quickly picked it up thinking it would be the perfect film to watch for Valentine's Day. Perhaps I've become a cynical old bitch, but I didn't find this movie romantic at all. I love a story of unrequited love as well as the next woman and certainly lovers getting a second chance, but I just didn't like this film, it was terribily dull at times.  The film follows the outline of a classic historical romance novel in the first bit, bitchy rival, two brothers in love with the same woman, a dashing Marchese to add some sparks to the usual love triangle. The biggest problem was the two lovers. Rollo comes across as a charming but callow youth and Lark is a wimpy drip who just occasionally shows some signs of spunk with little conviction. We see very few scenes of this love growing between the two of them since he's been away in the army. The scene where she tells Rollo she can't wait for 5 years sinces more like she's whining than the fact that she can't stand to be in the same house with Selina and Pelham anymore. Jayne Meadows plays a standard villainess, who hates Lark solely because other people love her.  If this were a book, I would have thrown it across the room by now. There's just no depth to any of the characters, except perhaps the Marquese. I wondered why Lark so readily believes Selina since she knows that she is a bitch and hates her. And Rollo, why doesn't he go after Lark and fight for her?

In World War II section, while I liked Evelyn Keyes spunky American Grizel (who turns out to be Pelham's granddaughter, apparently he moved to the States), I thought Farley Granger was another drip.  He moons over Grizel with big calf eyes which is supposed to spell love. At least she has real reasons for not wanting to marr Pax what with there being a war on and everything. And I did like Rollo telling her to carpe diem. I also liked David Niven who plays Rollo as a young man and as well as older Rollo. You can see what his choices have cost him for not being a stronger man. Not to spoil the end of the movie, but it's a real downer.

So I can't recommend this film, even for old movie buffs, like myself. I am however, curious to read the book that the film is based on. Rumer Godden wrote the novel Black Narcissus which was made into a very interesting film.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Real Estate Porn: San Francisco Victorians

I love old Victorian houses and luckily New York still has a few of them in Brooklyn and Queens. But some of the loveliest are in San Franciso. Check out this beauty on Steiner Street. According to Bonnie Spindler, The Victorian Specialist's website:

RARELY AVAILABLE! Built in 1892, 722 Steiner is known worldwide as the anchor of the Painted Ladies of Postcard Row. Featured in over 70 movies, TV shows & ads, including the 1980's series Full House. Elegantly restored by current owners, the home is 4 levels, including an in-law with private entrance on the ground floor and an attic suite, with full bath. Stained glass windows, hi-ceilings, Bradbury wallpaper, moldings, medallions, wainscoting, 4 fps & Views! Once in a lifetime opportunity!

Rumor had it that this was the house that was featured in the opening credits of Full House but real estate blog Zillow.com disputes that and claims it was another house entirely. The house is listed on Spindler's web-site for $4M which is really a bargain because the house is in mint-condition and has a stained glass window to die for.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

What I'm Reading Now - Lunch in Paris: A Love Story

Title: LUNCH IN PARIS A Love Story with Recipes - Elizabeth Bard
Pub. Date: February 2010

Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

Format: Hardcover, 324pp

What it's About:  While attending a conference in London, Elizabeth Bard meets a handsome Frenchmen. Later in Paris for a weekend visit, she met him for lunch and her whole life changed. LUNCH IN PARIS is a memoir about a young American woman caught up in two passionate love affairs—one with her new beau, Gwendal (I just realized that he has the same name as Gwendal Peizerat, the French Ice dancer) the other with French cuisine. Packing her bags for a new life in the world's most romantic city, Elizabeth is plunged into a world of bustling open-air markets, bistros, and women who don't need to diet. Elizabeth finds that the deeper she immerses herself in the world of French cuisine, the more Paris itself begins to translate.

My Thoughts: Thanks to Amanda McCabe, I went out yesterday in the snowstorm here in New York to purchase LUNCH IN PARIS: A LOVE STORY by Elizabeth Bard.  I was interested in reading this memoir, because I've been contemplating writing a memoir about my love affair with England.

I enjoyed this book immensely, Bard is a charming writer. I felt as if I knew who she was, that she was someone that I could be friends with. It was the perfect book to snuggle up with on a cold winter's day.  As someone who has lived abroad, although in England where technically they speak the same language that we do, I emphasized with Elizabeth's struggles, not only to learn a new language but also to deal with the cultural differences. The French way of life is completely different than ours, no matter how many McDonald's, EuroDisney, or Starbucks there might be. I almost wish that I could have slipped her a copy of Culture Shock! France or suggested that she read the myriad of memoirs written by American women who have married Frenchmen. I have a good friend, an actress that I worked with in New York, who now lives in Paris. When she was here last March, she talked about the difficulties of living in France, but of course, all I could think about was, how lucky she was. Reading LUNCH IN PARIS, I have a better sense of what she has gone through since moving there 8 years ago. Particularly the sections about trying to make new friends, and how difficult it is with Europeans who seem to have known each other since they were in nappies.

The book also made me long to take another trip to Paris. I have a feeling that I will see it with new eyes after reading this book. I've only been there twice, one in college with a whole fleet of Americans, and once 12 years ago with some friends I made while studying in London. I've always longed to go back but the pull of London has always been stronger. Funny, reading this book made me realize that I don't think I've ever been attracted to Frenchmen! However, I was charmed by her relationship with Gwendal, and the struggles she faced daily, not only to make new friends, but to also explain her new life to her family who probably couldn't comprehend how she could deal with out a great bagel, or some of the other things that we take for granted in our daily life here in the States, like grocery delivery, repairmen who actually show up when they say they will, etc. Particularly poignant were the sections dealing with her father-in-law's illness. Bard gives the reader details that were left out of Michael Moore's documentary SICKO.

I look forward to reading more about Bard's life in Paris on her blog, and hopefully in another book.

Warning! Reading this book will make you incredibly hungry. You might want to head out to the nearest Le Pain Quotdien or Financier Patisserie after reading this book. I had a hankering for escargots, brie, and a glass of Lillet myself. Ooh, and a gooey chocolate eclair with the chocolate filling.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Hump Day Hotties: The History Boys

It's another edition of Hump Day Hotties. And since apparently there is a blizzard today in NYC, these History Boys can keep you warm while they talk to you about ancient lands and facts.  The cutie above is Josh Bernstein. I first discovered Josh while watching Digging for the Truth on the History Channel. I instantly fell in lust with Mr. Bernstein. Not even the Teva sandals and the questionable hair dim his good-looks. He has the most soulful brown eyes! And he has a twin brother Andrew! Reading his bio made him even more desirable. Degree from Cornell, graduate study in Jersusalem. The whole outdoorsy thing, while normally a turn-off, he makes seem hot. He owns a survival training school in Utah. Seriously, if I were ever dumb enough to go on Survivor, I would enroll in his school first to learn how to make it work. He left The History Channel for his own show on The Discovery Channel which lasted like one season. Still, Digging for the Truth is available on DVD! You can check out more about Josh at his web-site http://www.joshbernstein.com/.

Thanks to Nicola Cornick for letting me know about this hottie instead of keeping him to herself. His name is Dan Snow, and he's 6 foot 5 full of dreaminess. A graduate of Balliol College, Oxford, he's Anglo-Canadian and the great-great grandson of Prime Minister David Lloyd-George. Only 31, he's already made a name for himself as a historian with his dad, and he's had several shows on the BBC. You can read more about him at this fan site. http://www.dan-snow.co.uk/

And now for our final hottie, I give you Michael Wood, the presenter of Searching for Shakespeare and Searching for Myths & Heroes. It just goes to show that one can still be a hottie at 61!

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Guilty Pleasures: The Graham Norton Show

I hate to admit this but I don't watch any of the late night American chat shows. Not Letterman, or Conan or Jay Leno. Not even Craig Ferguson and he's at least Scottish. I have only a nodding acquaintance with Jimmy Kimmel and that's solely through watching "I'm f*#*ing Matt Damon" and it's sequel on YouTube. Jon Stewart yes, but he's not really a chat show, and I'm learning about important issues about of the day, so Jon Stewart is actually good for me. The only time I've ever really watched them was when I was working my night job at IAG and I was getting paid to stay up that late to watch stale jokes and actors pimping movies that they made over a year ago.

However, I will watch The Graham Norton show on BBC America. Maybe it's Norton's puckish Irish charm and irreverance. Or the fact that he's incredibly camp and flamboyant. He doesn't seem to care that he's talking to stars or reality TV celebrities or models. He treats them all the same. Plus the guests are allowed to drink on stage which adds to the general looseness of the program. Seriously, if Leno and his guests were sharing a brewsky, I might actually watch the program. Plus what I love about The Graham Norton show is that he also treats the people in the audience the same way that he treats his guests. I would cheerfully sit in his audience for the hope of having him take the piss out of me.  Seriously, I would love to add him to my UK gay husbands.

Watching Graham Norton, I've learned about web-sites like Upside Down Dogs, Teapot Blowing and other WTF'kery as Katiebabs likes to call it. He's even done theme nights like the show where all his guests were Welsh including Dame Shirley Bassey (I love her), Michael Sheen (whose father is a professional Jack Nicolson impersonator) and some comedian I've never heard of. I've also learned of the mythical kingdom called Benedorm, which is apparently another place in Spain that Brits have ruined. One of my favorite show was when Dawn French and Rod Stewart was on and Norton was ragging on her about her list of famous people that she's kissed and she replied that Rod was next and his wife Penny was okay with it.  Then there was the time that Patsy Kensit was on, and they talked about this show Who Do You Think You Are? (which Lisa Kudrow is producing for NBC), and while she revealed that her paternal line is full of criminals Graham just complained that all he learned was that he was Irish, and he knew that already. The Graham Norton Show (and Jonathan Ross) are the only shows where I can see British actors and celebrities that I've only read about in Hello! Magazine. And he puts together such an ecletic mix. One night he had Jackie Collins and Katie Price aka Jordan on the show (and if you don't know who Katie Price, I would look her up on Wikipedia).

He also has a feature he does at the end of the show where audience members sit in a chair and they have to tell a story. If he thinks it sucks, then he pulls a lever and the chair goes backwards. Sort of like The Gong Show gone wrong. He also used to have a callbox rigged up on the Thames near the studio which he would call to see if people picked up. Awesomeness. Sometimes I can't believe the BBC lets him get away with some of the stuff he says and does. He also hosted How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria and ANY DREAM WILL DO, the two TV competitions that Andrew Lloyd Webber did to find stars for his new West End Shows. After watching him host these shows, I really wished they'd fire Ryan Seacrest and hire him to do AMERICAN IDOL.

I eagerly await the next season of the show on BBC America. And in the meantime, I will content myself with re-runs.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Friday Real Estate Porn - Chateau Lyon

Isn't it a lovely French chateau? Well, it may look like a French chateau but it is actually located here in the States, in Lake Norman, North Carolina. Thanks to Luxist for bringing this lovely property to my attention. Apparently the owners want $15 million for it. Seriously if you have that kind of money, why not just buy a real French chateau in France? Unless of course, you don't like the French!

Here's the description from the Sotheby's web-site: "Introducing......Chateau Lyon. Ancient craftmanship in a modern masterpiece. Incredibly ornate details, from the Biblical Stone in the Grand Foyer to the imported French Limestone walls. Hand carved Mexican pinon stone surround all exterior windows/doors. Pecky Cypress eaves and ceiling on the Loggia and Grand Salon, Palm Court, kitchen, master bath and morning room. Upper level flooring is of 250 year old heart pine. Antique European Roof Tiles. Centuries-old hand carved restored doors. French Boisiere style adorns this magnificiant estate. Italian chandelier in the Palm Court, zinc coated copper roof flashing, hand forged Mar-a-Lago balcony, hand cut Texas Limestone foundation walls, original iron balcony grill from the 1880's, all compliment this 5 bedroom 6 bath work of art. Timeless in design, but completely modern in terms of efficiency and upgrades, as there are 13 heating/cooling zones, Generac generator, and equiped with Creston Home Control and Automation Solutions."

It's lovely and the Luxist site has many more pretty pictures of the inside of the chateau. Apparently the owners traveled all over Europe to find bits and pieces to decorate their chateau.  I'd still rather have the real thing, a chateau in France!

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Hump Day Hotties: General Hospital Edition

Steve Burton who plays Jason Morgan, hot second in command to Sonny Corinthos, mob boss.

GH's own McDreamy Jason Thompson who plays brilliant but arrogant neurosurgeon, Dr. Patrick Drake

And finally Dominic Zamprogna who plays Dante Falconieri, undercover cop and illegitmate son of mob boss Sonny Corinthos

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Guilty Pleasures: Twizzlers

I have a huge sweet tooth, there is no denying it, and one of the candies that I love the most are Twizzlers. And I'm one of those people who can't just stop at one piece. If I buy a bag of Twizzlers, I will eat the whole bag in one sitting, if I'm not careful. Which is why I try not eat Twizzlers too often.

According to Wikipedia and the Hershey web-site, Twizzlers were first manufactured by the Y&S Candies, one of the oldest confectionery firms in the United States. The company was established in 1845 as Young and Smylie and adopted Y&S as its trademark in 1870. National Licorice Company was created in 1902 through the merger of three small firms: Young & Smylie, S.V. & F.P. Schudder and H.W. Petherbridge. The company changed its name to Y&S Candies Inc. in 1968 and was acquired by Hershey Foods in 1977.
Today TWIZZLERS candy is available in a variety of flavors and styles, strawberry, true black licorice, cherry, and chocolate flavored licorice-style candy.

I love them all but it's the chocolate that I really love which makes no sense because I think that Hershey's chocolate tastes like ear wax but somehow it works with licorice.