Your Baby is an A**hole

Strollers are weapons of mass destruction. At the L.A. County Fair, parents used their offspring as an excuse to bruise and scratch total strangers. But the problem isn't the strollers of course. Even if strollers have been beefed up to resemble mini SUVs, the problem lies within that special brand of parent prone to dementia.

This dementia flatters them into thinking that everyone else loves their baby too. Those afflicted inappropriately drag their cranky tots to barbecues and parties, where everyone is expected to coo, watch their language and pipe down once the parents can stash it away in a back room. Note to these individuals: If you can't afford a sitter, you can't afford a child.

But myself and the millions of people who have been violated by strollers, crying babies in movie theatres and bad Facebook baby etiquette are speaking up. The brilliant blogger for New York is Retarded shared this hilarious rant. Here's an exerpt:

Hipster BabiesJust because you’re a hipster doesn’t mean you’re a cooler parent. If anything, you and your retarded, new age hippy parenting skills are way worse than any Midwestern, diaper bag toting, overweight, sweat-suit clad nightmare who has their kid on a leash. At least they see their child for what it is to everyone else; a pest. A pest named Billy who they keep on a leash and smack around when he acts like an asshole. I love that.

But in Brooklyn’s hipster parent world, a little shit named Chloe in a tiny Marc Jacobs ensemble wanders aimlessly around the coffee shop with her other designer clad gang of baby hipster friends named Rufus, Rex, Telulah and Blaize. They chew on mommy’s old Nano and climb onto the couch I’m sitting on and size up my clearly un-designer ensemble and loudly proclaim to their friends, “Target” in an ironic baby voice.

Meanwhile, their mothers are all gathered around in a circle drinking yerba matte, wearing slouchy boots over leggings and talking about how challenging pilates was today, oblivious to the gang warfare being waged over on my side of the shop. Clearly annoyed, but to no avail I have to suffer through this until their mothers entice them back over with a baggie full of Veggie Pirate’s Booty. Even better than that bargaining chip, these vacuous, baby holes promise their little trolls a “baby cappuccino” if they continue to be “good”. I watch the barista’s eyes rolls back in their head at the mention of a baby cappuccino and silently whisper to one another, “Not it.”

...and if the New York is Retarded blogger and the millions who have been made some stroller's bitch can't convince you that your baby is an a**hole, check out the official Your Baby is an A**hole website.


The 2nd Annual Tasty Awards

Celebrating the best in food and fashion, one presenter aptly described it as an event for "...Those who love to eat, and those who don't eat at all."

Supper Club servers
The second annual Tasty Awards kicked off this week at Hollywood's Egyptian Theatre, and as luminaries from both the foodie and fashion world milled about in the courtyard, they marveled at the unseasonably warm weather. That, and gorgeous servers in space suits, serving hors d'oeuvres by The Supper Club.

Photo by Jerod Harris
The awards show had a few hilarious trip-ups (as awards shows do), though it would have been funnier had there been an open bar prior to the show. Three Sheets' Zane Lamprey (pictured left) made light of it all and kept the crowd happy.

Some of the night's winners included Top Chef for Best Food Program. The award was accepted by Top Chef star Fabio Viviani, whom I'd previously had the pleasure of meeting during a Top Chef culinary tour

Top Chef heartthrob Fabio Viviani
The winner for Best Fashion or Design Program went to Lifetime's Project Runway and Best New Series was The Food Network's The Great Food Truck Race. The after party was hopping, as signature cocktails were shaken by Vya, and spicy Malaysian delicacies were served by downtown's Starry Kitchen. Chocolate of all creeds were laid out for the taking, such as The Toffee Box, Wine Time Bars and Mignon. Both stylish and delicious, I would expect no less a presentation from The Tasty Awards.

Vya apertif
The Toffee Box
pomegranate chocolates by Mignon


Lazy Ox Canteen - The Emperor's New Restaurant

Remember how 80's movies parodied the gourmet restaurant boon? In L.A. Story, a new French cafe named L'Idiot served microscopic bites on giant plates, and everyone continued the charade in order to appear refined. That was my experience at Lazy Ox Canteen.

Plate after plate arrived at our table with scant, mediocre-flavored nibbles. We had already dropped $40 on dishes that didn't make the equivalent of one appetizer, and we were hungry. Realizing we'd have to spend a few hundred just to stop the grumbling in our bellies, we bit the $40 tab. Throwing down our cash, we walked out  and down the street to King Taco.

For the record, I adore small plate restaurants. You can experience more flavors and share with your friends. But Lazy Ox Canteen doesn't hold a candle to the diverse fun of Susan Feniger's Street or the gourmet seriousness of Mario Batali's Mozza. Both Mozza and Street offer better quality and fairer portions, and their chefs have a lot more hype than Ox's Josef Centeno. So let's throw ego out the window and be a little less stingy with portions. Lazy Ox is taking advantage of the downtown L.A. renaissance and all the proud but clueless yuppie/hipster hybrids whom are new to the area. A downtown address and industrial interior does not a restaurant make. Sooner or later, they will catch on.

Not all reality TV makes me sad about how stupid people are

Who says Hollywood only churns out crappy reality TV? The good news is, we've done away with The Hills and the Jersey Shore? Hell that's the other coast. The verbally abusive coast that likes to make us feel bad about ourselves. The coast I came from.

Some reality TV is just plain delicious. Top Chef not only teaches you how to make good with the food you've got in-house, but it celebrates the spirit of competition. The past couple of years, I've had the privilege of celebrating good food with them. They've done cooking demonstrations and whipped us up some serious treats. Thank you Top Chef!


A Pole Lotta Fun

Pole dancing, yoga and bellydancing in one class? Where do I sign up? Goddess Fitness Dance, it turns out.

It was cute. Gimmicky, but cute. I could've done without all the pink feather boa/diva/tiara/ goddess stuff, which felt kind of 90's. Plus as we worked out, our instructor (and founder) Emma Ridley did these raver "Ooh?! Ooh?!" shrieks. But the lady had a killer body and the workout was fun. We even got little coin belts to tie on as we bellydanced.

It was all roses until we got to the pole dancing part. In a big darkened room, we lined up to try a spin on one of the poles. I hate lines. I'm the guy that brings a book to Disneyland. In a plastic bag of course, (water rides). She told us to keep our hearts rates up by dancing in place while we waited for our turn. Everyone shifted feet and looked at one another to see who would dance first. It was really awkward. She lowered the lights and raised the music to kill our inhibitions. But we only half-heartedly shifted our weight from one foot to the other and hoped we wouldn't make fools of ourselves when it was our turn at bat.

Our instructor directed us while hanging upside down from a pole 20 feet in the air.  A girl leaned in and said, "When you're a real pole dancer, you can't spend too much time up there. You need to get your ass down and make some tips." She was a seasoned stripper from Houston.

There are a lot of tricks to making a pole look easier to climb. I was doing pretty well. Then she wanted us to spin on the pole with our feet off the ground. This entails running and jumping onto the pole. That's where things took a turn south.

Ever had a bruised shin? It felt like the bone shattered. But it's amazing the lengths I will go to to appear cool in front of a crowd. I grinned and bared it. They cheered. I spun. No one could see the tears streaming down my cheeks. Maybe that's another reason the instructor dims the lights.

When the shin bone gets bruised, you don't see the damage as easily as a flesh wound. The leg was sore to the touch like a bad sunburn. If a leg hair bristled, I burst into tears. My leg swelled and blood pooled at my ankle arch, turning it purple. As sexy as I'm dying to be, I may have to sit out of the whole pole dancing movement. I'll always have my Carmen Electra's Aerobic Striptease DVDs after all.


Happy New Year Los Angeles!

Thought I'd ring in the New Year by sharing photos from a memorable holiday party we threw this season. Hopefully the mirth and cheer will spill over into 2011. In the meantime, I will remember to be grateful to live in a city filled with so many secrets, delights, adventures and great friends!

Stephanie and Andrew

me, dawn, laelah and kim


cookie decorating station

kim, natalie & mark

the lovers! berta, kim, matt & herbie

kim & natalie

with Kristene and Rebecca
Happy 40th Nicole!