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Showing posts from September, 2012


30 Signs I'm in My 30s

Since I neglected to post a birthday blog this year (forgetfulness alert!), I thought I'd compile a list of things I've noticed about myself lately. Consider this another example of me being overly observant and self-aware as I settle into Thirtydom and attempt to make sense of the controlled chaos I call my life.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who's found himself waxing nostalgic about trivial things like mix tapes and Netscape, and I know I'm not alone when I say that I've been content staying in on a Friday night with a couple of DVRed episodes of Here Comes Honey Boo Boo.

So grab a pencil. Because some of you may want to use this as a checklist...

1. Falling asleep on a friend's couch on a Saturday night...well before midnight...while watching a Woody Allen DVD.

2. Falling asleep in bed on a Saturday night...well before midnight...while watching old episodes of Felicity.

3. Adjusting to the reality that my "little" cousins are now posting …


My Gig with Gaga

Way back in January, I had been booked on a rather exciting assignment.

The company that usually pimps me out to commercial directors --in order to help them write treatments and presentations that they send to advertising agencies -- hooked me up with a gig writing for world-renowned photographer Steven Klein. Apparently he had been in talks with Lady Gaga's Haus Laboratories in Paris to help direct and produce a short film announcing her new fragrance, Fame, "the first ever black eau de parfum."

Having already come up with an initial concept that would make this stand out from other perfume campaigns, Steven needed to flesh out his ideas and translate them into a coherent narrative. That's where I came in (sadly, there were no creative meetings directly with Mother Monster herself). And now, after nine long months of secrecy, I can finally say that I am proud to have been a (tiny, little) part of this visually stunning (and hella abstract) project.

Check out the f…


Sneak Peeks: Jenna Dewan-Tatum & Drew Roy

Another day, another chance to shamelessly plug some stuff.

First up, the lovely lady on your left is Jenna Dewan-Tatum, who plays Adam Levine's wife in next month's American Horror Story: Asylum and stars in the high school reunion dramedy 10 Years (with real-life hubby Channing, now in theaters). I interviewed the dancer-actress for Bello's Obsession issue, which hits the App Newsstand in October.

Then, to your right is Falling Skies actor Drew Roy. My interview with the fashionable heartthrob appears in the mag's September issue. But it's now available for your reading pleasure here.

@TheFirstEcho

"Will tweet for food."


8 Movies Everyone's Seen But Me

If you were to look at the subtitle in the above banner of this blog you would see that I fancy myself a connoisseur of all things pop culture. While I realize that self-proclaimed title can appear presumptuous, I admit that there have been some things I've missed out on. Therefore, I thought I'd take this opportunity to out myself, not as a charlatan, but as someone who isn't capable of knowing every frickin' single movie, album, and TV show out there. I mean, nobody's perfect, right? Unless you're Roger Ebert or Leonard Maltin, chances are you, dear reader, haven't even seen half  of the films in existence.

Here's a short list of films that, to this day, I haven't had the chance to view. Go ahead. Drop those jaws. Scold me all you want. Let's get it all out, shall we?

1. Aladdin (1992) - The beloved Disney classic is one of the big ones that got away. I was 12 when it came out in theaters, and although I did enjoy "A Whole New World"…


Just How Prepared Am I for the Big One?

Now that we've had two earthquakes in one week here in Los Angeles (one bigger than the previous), it's about time my friends and acquaintances hunker down and seriously consider protecting our asses if and when the seismic shit goes down.

According to the L.A. Times, "experts now recommend that disaster survivors be prepared to be self-sufficient for up to seven days, although having supplies for at least three days had been the norm. Here are lists of supplies to have at home, in the car and at work..."

Let's take a look at what I should have stocked up in my apartment, shall we?

•  Nonperishable packaged or canned food - So you're saying the can sardines I got in my cabinet isn't enough?Mental note: next time Spaghetti-Os go on sale at Ralph's, load up.

•  A gallon of water per person per day (Replace every six months and count pets as family members) - Good thing I pilfered that Crystal Geyser jug from that Labor Day beach party.

•  Manual can opener -…


Afterburn: The 2012 Fall Playlist, Vol. 1

You know autumn is upon us when Staples sells out of Crayola crayons, "pumpkin" is the flavor du jour at every cafe, and there's a new Resident Evil movie hitting theaters.

The weather may be cooling off, but things are just getting warmed up. Cut to: me spending my Labor Day weekend laboring away to perfect a playlist that just might help you get through those unavoidable Halloween costume brainstorming sessions...

1. "Your Body" by Christina Aguilera -- We kick off this compilation with The Voice judge's anticipated first single from her fifth studio album (seven, if you count those holiday and Spanish releases). It takes a couple of listens to settle into the suggestive lyrics and seductive bassline. Next thing you know, you'll be clamoring for the nearest warm body on the dance floor and grinding till the world ends.

2. "She Wolf (Falling to Pieces)" by David Guetta feat. Sia
3. "Say Nothing" by Example
4. "Sleep Alone"…


Portrait of the Artist as an 11-Year-Old

If you know me -- or if you're one of the three people who follow this commentary-ridden chronicle I call a blog -- you know that when I was younger, I was an enormous bookworm. On any given day at any given moment throughout most of the 90s, chances are you'd find me with my nose buried in the pages of a paperback novel.

What I may have also briefly mentioned in past posts is that, from the ages of 9 to 12, I filled up five 5-subject notebooks with short stories I wrote.

Most of these stories were heavily influenced by the genre that fascinated me: horror.

While spending one Saturday night in my L.A. bedroom watching old episodes of Felicity (jealous?), I dug out three of these notebooks that I had brought back with me from my childhood bedroom in New York. Flipping through the fading wide-ruled sheets, I realized several things: 1) I was a total ripoff artist -- but isn't that the nature of a child writer, to mimic what you see, learn and enjoy? 2) I was all about creat…