I will bestow upon you a diverse list of pop culture favorites, starting with the most undeniably perfect television series of all time:
It did not deserve to die so prematurely, although the cast mostly all ended up taking on lead roles in major motion pictures…it would’ve been a real treasure to have a nice long run with that show. It epitomized high school, coming of age, the ugly awkward stage, the search for our own identity and the utter confusion felt among a sea of people just as confused and ugly and awkward and scared as the next guy. It was spot on, hilarious, and so well written.
One of my only birthday wishes when I turned 21 (as I was not drinking but naturally still just as nuts) was just simply to go dance my ass off at some club on their 80′s throwback night, then eat ice cream and watch Freaks and Geeks in my underwear and a tiara… and I DID. Just me, my best friend Drew, the best TV show ever, and for balance, we incorporated one of the best worst songs ever “Crazy Bitch” by Buckcherry. We capped off the night by blasting it perpetually through the house while we made complete fools of ourselves until we couldn’t breathe. I’ll leave you with two of my favorite moments of the show; one being the perfect, dry redundancy with which Mr. Weir overemphasizes his desires for his children to be moral and healthy adults by telling them everyone who did otherwise died. The other is a moment shared between the main character Lindsey and a classmate he encourages her to skip class and shows her his drum set…. telling her that that’s what she’s missing, she just needs to find her big, gigantic drum kit (her passion). It’s just beautiful.
Now let me present to you one of my favorite movies… although there are far too many to prioritize and list I shall give you this gem known as Brick. By far one of the best movies I’ve ever seen. It’s an extremely clever story line, rather fast paced, with very witty dialogue, and lot’s of symbolism. It’s a detective story set in a high school scene, when a drug deal goes bad. What was brilliant to me was the fact that the kids and adults roles have been somewhat reversed and we are watching high school students running high risk crime scene investigations and acting as drug lords, discussing business in their mother’s house while she serves them breakfast and pours juice… It’s a dark comedy/mystery/independent film that I highly recommend. I suppose to be fair, I will simply add to this category, my favorite Directors are Wes Anderson and Michel Gondry, favorite genres recently and consistently seem to be quirky, symbolic indie flicks, blaxploitation films, and mockumentaries.
3. Chuck Palahnuik
To be well rounded here, I will now recommend my favorite author to read lately: Chuck Palahnuik. I started with Choke on a long airplane ride, after having forgotten and neglected my love for books. I was such a bookworm growing up, always loved words and expression, one of my favorite smells to this day is the caramely musty smell of an old soft book.
Anyway, I was instantly drawn into the story that was unfolding in front of me, I loved the shameless and poignant use (or to some, mis-use) of grammar and punctuation, sentence structure and placement of spaces (or lack there of) for the sole intent they were created for…. to bring you into this world the author was creating. I loved how Palahnuik exposes the grittiest and perhaps most detestable traits of our humanity, and simultaneously sheds light on the beauty. He does not leave room for judgment or condemnation, merely observes and connects all of us in this shamefully wonderful realization that we’re all equally sick, fucked up, beautiful beings and this allows us to accept and love all….. at least, to understand.
The name Renee Yohe might sound familiar after all of the work the non-profit organization, To Write Love On Her Arms, has done in her honor. The organization, founded to help fund Renee receive treatment for depression and addiction, has grown into a bona fide movement, donating over $1 million directly into treatment and recovery. TWLOHA was awarded with mtvU‘s “Good Woodie Award,” a 6-page feature in Rolling Stone, NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, CBS Sunday Morning as well as a $1million grant from Chase at the first-ever American Giving Awards, announced on NBC this past December.
Telling her story and connecting with people who are battling their own demons has always been a priority for Renee and music has got her though the darkest times. Her book, A Purpose For The Pain, chronicles her road from self-destruction to self-help through a series of heart-wrenching and inspiring journal entries. A film based on her story, Renee, is due out in 2012, starring Kat Dennings (as Renee Yohe) and Chad Michael Murray (as Jamie Tworkowski, founder of TWLOHA).
BEARCAT, allows Renee, to connect with her fans through the avenue that always helped her through her darkest hours the most, music. Her hauntingly beautiful voice has been compared to the likes of Fiona Apple, Kate Nash and Zooey Deschanel and their first single, “Crazy Fishes,” premiered on Zooey’s own blog, HelloGiggles.com. Bearcat will be touring with Never Shout Never this spring and have recently launched a Kickstarter to help fund their debut album. Please check it out here: http://kck.st/AErDWH