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THROWBACK THURSDAY

04/11/2013

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Digging through the archives is as easy as clicking on the titles of these posts…

Crayola Executive Pen

“I did chuckle at the the “executive” label and the ad copy, which states, “Perfect for the executive who’s still a child at heart” and honestly, in light of recent press over executive shenanigans, I think we’ve had enough of executives acting like greedy children.”

This One Time When I Kept an X-files Journal

“In these journals were some the most egregious acts of X-files geekiness committed to archival quality paper! We’re talking detailed episode guides, episode lists with legends! Character flow charts, hand drawn maps of various locations depicted in the show, list after bloody list of rants/raves and lawd, help me – some slash and poetry.”

I’ve Always Dreamed of Your Measurements in Neon Lightscribe

“Once I got the Livescribe Echo a writing, I was more in love with the feeling – smooth and faintly James Bondian (in my case Timothy Dalton) – of writing on the page than excitement of being able to upload my scribblings to the computer. I even stopped a couple of times to test drive the recording feature. Mostly to squeal, “OMG, I’m writing with and talking into a pen from a Discolicious Neon Lit Tron Future!!!” which, probably was not the quality of recorded information the product was designed for.”

Magna Blast vs @ The Office Pens

“In researching the demise of the Inc. version of the pen it seems there is host of unsubstantiated rumors and tawdry doings as to how Wally World suddenly began selling a pen that looked exactly like one they no longer carry! If anyone knows the real story – actually if there is a rivalry between Peachtree Playthings and Inc/Megabrand that would make for a riveting episode of This American Life – chime in!”

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BLUE (LAMY SAFARI) MONDAY

04/08/2013

Blue Lamy Safari

For my birthday I was gifted a pretty blue Lamy Safari, also known as my FAVORITEST pens at the moment.
Blue Lamy Safari

I am all about collecting these pens. and while my collection isn’t as impressive as this one I’d like to think it’s pretty respectable. This brings me up to 6 Lamy Safaris, in case you’re keeping count. There are two more on the way (charcoal and the 2013 Neon Yellow).

Blue Lamy Safari

People who aren’t really pen folk often ask why I’m so smitten with this particular pen. I really couldn’t say. I just do.

HELLO KITTY DOUBLE SIDED MARKER

04/05/2013

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A couple of times a week I play a game I call “What if I was the sort of person who…”. It’s more of a mental exercise, but since it often yields prizes it feels like a game. As a writer, the exercise has a practical application and rewards, though often not apparent in the short run. Nevertheless, it’s probably a lot more productive than other mental exercises such as the ever popular, “What’s that weird noise coming from the basement?” or “Why can’t people stop doing…”. On one such day I found myself being the sort of person who listens to enthusiastic sales associates pitching the merits of “Smash” book accessories (without scoffing) and walked away with a Hello Kitty Double Sided Marker.

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I’ve been on the fence regarding the whole Smash phenomena as it seemed like clever marketing, designed to tell folks they can be scrapbookers without having to be identified as people who scrapbook. It’s hip. It’s edgy! It’s not like that stuff soccer moms and cat ladies do! Or whatever. In any event, smash marketing seemed a bit too twee and precious for its own good. But then Hello Kitty got into the game and all bets were off! The double sided marker, which I snagged at Michael’s, breaks no new double sided marker ground. It had a fine point and a chiseled point. The fine end reminds me of the Sharpie Pen except the ink is a little ashy and the line isn’t as consistent. The chiseled tip reminds me of what happens to broadline markers when you punish the tips by pressing them on the paper too hard. The chisel tip here seemed a bit worn and got little ink holidays on the paper.The barrel design is nice, caps provide a tight fit and post quite securely. The pen’s material, however, could stand to be a little more substantial. Considering the price point – $2.99 – the pen feels a bit cheap.

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Comparing the Hello Kitty double sided marker to EK Success’s Smash Stick, some of the former’s deficits become vividly apparent. Because the Hello Kitty marker is a part of the brand’s own “smash” line, I’m afraid comparisons are unavoidable. The latter comes with a glue stick at the end which tends to make it a more useful product. The smash stick is also more substantial. I like the shape of the smash stick more, which shouldn’t take away from Hello Kitty. It’s just a personal preference. One thing that’s difficult to argue is price. Both the Hello Kitty double sided marker and the Smash Stick are comparably priced – at around three bucks – which makes the Smash Stick a better value in my opinion. But then again, if you’re like me and you love anything Hello Kitty what are you gonna do??? You’ll buy this pen. That’s what you’ll do.

CRAYOLA EXTREME COLORS COLORED PENCILS

04/04/2013

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While product copy bearing the word “extreme” (i.e. deodorant, cleaning products. leisure activities or chewing gum) make me scoff violently, I was able to overlook its use for those Crayola Extreme Colors Colored Pencils. Because look how cute they are! According to the website:

    Coloring has never been this much fun – or this exciting! With Crayola eXtreme Colors Colored Pencils, you get eight ultra-vibrant, super-hot and totally cool colors. Your drawings and pictures will come to life as you express yourself in all-new ways.

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And who am I to argue with Crayola marketing copy! Certainly not me. Out of the package, these ultra bright pencil are identical in size and shape to their less vivid colored pencil siblings. The pencils come pre-sharpened, and look quite dashing in their cheap cardboard packaging. Boasting names such as: Lemon Glacier, Absolute Zero and Artic Lime, crayola is not kidding around about this extreme neon thing.

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Aesthetically these are certainly darling colored pencils, but that’s pretty much the sole area where the product excels. For starters, I didn’t find the colors to show particularly well on paper. To me they look more pastel than neon, and some of the colors (the orange, pink, red, yellow-orange) were somewhat indistinguishable on the page. None of this would be bothersome if the set of 8 pencils didn’t retail for between $4 – $6 (depending on retailer), which I think is too much money for this little product. This set is not going to replace higher end color pencils, nor is it even going to satisfy people looking for an acrid blast of neon goodness across the page. While these pencils work for my needs, your fun-to-monkeys ratio may vary.

SCENES FROM A BIRTHDAY

04/03/2013

birthdaycake

Ever since spying Damien Hirst-inspired confection from SFMOMA I knew I had to have my own for my birthday. Since I wasn’t planning a trip to SFMOMA, I commissioned my talented partner to create a similar cake! Well he did a pretty amazing job, wouldn’t you say. Not only was he tireless in his attempts to faithfully recreate the SFMOMA cake, he was also meticulous in its execution. Amazing doesn’t begin to describe my birthday!

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via my instagram

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More Filthy Farmgirl soaps! Recent additions: Filthy Zombie, Filthy Doctor, Tiger Chai and Filthy Cock. Yeah, those names are totally risque. But there’s nothing tawdry about their cleaning power or scents.

NEON OFFICE SUPPLIES

04/02/2013
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via Sarah Woodrow

Ever since stumbling across Sarah Woodrow’s desk with its glorious neon painted legs, I’ve been all about that neon-in-the-home-office life. I love the idea of light woods, white and a few zings of neon to keep the space from feeling sterile and blah.

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via my Instagram

Neon pink instantly puts me in a good mood. So much so I bought half a dozen rolls of neon pink duct tape. I haven’t decided what the hell I’m gonna do with all that tape, but it sure looks pretty sitting on my white shelf.

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From Image Above: Highlighter Pencils – Moleskine | Lime Green Accessory Tray – Poppin. | Pink Adils Table Leg – Ikea | Pink Pen Cup – Poppin. | Dresses I Had and Liked Notebook – Archie Grand | Lime Green Tape Dispenser – Poppin. | Lime Green Stapler – Poppin.

YOU DROPPED A (LIP) BALM ON ME (PART I)

01/16/2013

lip gloss in jars

If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter (and if you don’t you should) you’re probably well acquainted with my quest for the perfect lip balm and my overall obsession with the product. This post was requested by several people and I finally got around writing it. It’s going to be divided in a couple of parts. The first of which is about those much maligned lip balms in jars, which tends to be my favorite lip balm delivery method.

TOP ROW:

Vaseline Lip Therapy Pink Bubbly – I’ve been trying to get my hands on these overseas only editions of Vaseline. I’m not sure why the brand doesn’t think folks in the US need these cute tins rather than the fugly miniaturized versions of the fugly full sized container, but whatever. Vaseline is not about that glamorous life. It’s just a cheap, hard-working product made with polarizing ingredients by dubious means. That said, its active ingredient does tend to handle whatever chapped, flaky hot mess your lips might be experiencing. For me, the tactile experience of petroleum jelly and its barfy taste is usually why I do not actively seek out Vaseline brand lip products.

MAC Lip Conditioner – I don’t think you can even get the jar version of this product anymore. I guess that lets you know how old mine is! I stumbled upon the never opened jar when I was sorting through my makeup last fall. I am not generally a fan of MAC skincare products or their add on products. There’s nothing particularly wrong with them; I just don’t think they’re worth the money. This particular product is good but not spectacular. I do like the packaging, which I gotta believe was chief among the reasons I paid $15 for a thimble of watered down, nicely scented Vaseline.

Blistex Lip Medex – In college there was a girl who sat in front of me who spent what seemed like an excessive amount of time extracting this tiny blue pot from her back pocket, dabbing her ring finger into the medicinally smell goo and dot dot dotting it on her lips. Three dots for the top lip and four for the bottom. I always wanted to ask but never did, why that was exactly. Anyhoo, I had a coupon, which is often how I find myself open to trying products that don’t have cute packaging or don’t seem very interesting. Now, I fully admit to being a major cheapskate about things, so feel free to judge me because it took a COUPON and ashtray change ($.39 to be exact) to consider giving Blistex its shot. Well, It’s pretty nice. Unlike Carmex, which acts like it’s giving you all this product, but then has a hollowed out bottom, Blistex actually gives you lots of product. More importantly, you don’t really need a lot of it to benefit. Sure there’s the stinging sensation that some might find annoying, but that’s how you know it’s working!

BOTTOM ROW:

Kiehl’s Lip Balm #1 – I tend to be resentful of HG (holy grail) cult beauty products, because I am just a bitter, pathetic hater. I just cannot believe they could possibly be as good as everyone claims and really those people are just kool-aid drinking fools whose fragile egos must be marinated in status products. And then I tried #1 lip balm, which wasn’t that spendy and is actually really nice. It isn’t my favorite, but it’s a very good moisturizing lip product. I like using it to prime my lips because it’s not super shiny. That’s probably chief among the things I like about it. This seems an odd thing to admit (given how much I love lip gloss): I do not like super shiny lip balm. If you want to treat yourself to a lip balm this would a good one to do so. I totally feel glamorous whenever I use it.

C.O. Bigelow Rose Salve – Bath and Bodyworks is forever running a “Buy 2 get 1 free” sale on their lip products, which is how I finally gave rose salve a try. Rose notes remind me too much of goths who used to douse themselves in tea rose body products. I was not prepared for rose salve to become one of my favorite products ever. I use it constantly on my hands, lips and even my face. I love the way it smells: earthy rather than artificial rose scent. And finally there’s a workaround the dreadful “vaseline” smell. And you know I love me some old timey packaging,

Elf Studio Conditioning Lip Balm w/ SPF – So many things working against this product: bulky packaging, chalky looking unflattering colors, a bizarre texture… And yet I’ve included it on the list because it really moisturizes. It took some trial and error before finding the least ugly color (Nice & Natural) and how to get the product to work (you have to really RUB that sonovabitch in), but now that I have it’s one of my can’t be without products. I love how it feels once it is applied properly. Still I would feel weird recommending this to anyone because I can’t imagine most people having the patience to make this product work.

So now it’s your turn…tell me about lip balms in a jar I should try

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