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Thursday , February 11, 2010
Liz and LJ Present...The Ultimate Beatles Dating Guide!
Isn't it so wonderful when you have a crush on somebody, and then you check your compatibility on the Susan Miller Matchmaker by Sign thing, and Susan Miller's all, "On this pairing I say yes, yes, yes!" and it's the most validating thing in the world?
Yes, yes, yes. As was discussed last Sunday, The Beatles Archetype Zodiac is the second-most important Zodiac in existence, after the regular Zodiac. So, if the regular Zodiac gets a Susan Miller Matchmaker by Sign thing, shouldn't the Beatles Archetype Zodiac get one too? Yes, yes, yes- or possibly "Yeah, yeah, yeah," to quote the Beatles. The first step toward divining your Beatles Archetype Compatibility Profile is figuring out your own Beatles Archetype Zodiac Sign. In case you don't know who the Beatles are, here's a little refresher course:
JOHNS are acerbic, idealistic wiseguys who, deep down, just, like, really need to be loved.
PAULS are cutesy, megalomaniacal pragmatists. Pauls are never wrong. According to Pauls.
GEORGES are studious and dreamy. They are often highly judgmental of Johns and Pauls.
RINGOS are fun-loving sweethearts who may or may not suffer from mild autism. "I'm just happy to be here!" say Ringos, about everything.
Cool! Get ready to find out whether you should break up with John, work it out with Paul, sleep with George, or hold hands with Ringo this coming Sunday. All you need is love, Dudes!
1. JOHN & JOHN: Johns shouldn't date Johns, Johns should marry Johns. For Johns, there is simply no other way. This is why John married Yoko. Because Yoko is a John. So, as Johns, let us all take our cues from actual John, marry Johns, and live the dramatic and unreasonable lives we so passionately crave in John-esque dissonance forever and ever amen. (LJ)
2. JOHN & PAUL: This is a delicate balance. The John/Paul pairing has the potential to be the most complex and fulfilling relationship of the entire Beatles Archetype Zodiac, but it will take a lot of work. The great paradox of the John/Paul romance is that the John will believe him or herself to be perfect and that Paul needs to change, and the Paul will think the same, only in reverse. Best case scenario: both the John and the Paul will learn a valuable lesson in humility, and together, the John and the Paul will attain a transcendent state of "Day in the Life"-like symbiosis. Probably not, though. (LJ)
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Tags: astrology, Barker loves the Beatles, dating, dudes, George Harrison, girls, John Lennon, Laura loves the Beatles, love, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Scrabble, Susan Miller, Valentine's Day, vegan pudding, yoga
Tuesday , November 17, 2009
Liz & LJ Investigate: Who's the Sexiest "Another Girl" Beatle?
RINGO: THE STACY PERALTA OF 1965
LIZ: Well, the sexiest "Another Girl" Beatle definitely ain't Ringo, that's for damn sure! Next!
LJ: Does anybody think Ringo Starr is sexy? Say the sentence "Ringo is sexy" aloud to yourself. What a trip, right? I bet even Ringo's wives were like, "Richard Starkey is a fun-lovin' buttercup with a heart of gold, but um yeah no not really all that sexy." Sucks to be y'all, Barbara Bach and Maureen Starkey! Yet, eleven aberrant seconds into this video, something unearthly happens: Ringo gets sexy. It's when he's wearing giant black sunnies, and one of the other Beatles scratches at the lens of them. In that half-second, Ringo looks like a bitchin' little skate punk who would be really killer to make out with in a 7-11 parking lot while drinking a banana Slurpee. There would be liquor in the banana Slurpee. Ringo "Stacy Peralta" Starr.
PAUL: THE J.LO OF 1965
LJ: It's not Paul. "Another Girl" Paul is one of the least-sexy Pauls of the entire Beatles, trumped only by the non-sexiness fiasco we call "Let It Be" (Ew! By the way) For one thing, his ass looks like a woman's. It appears as though, prior to filming this video, Paul McCartney perused an article in Glamour magazine about how best to flatter one's curves, and then bought the exact jeans it recommended for maximum ass-bodaciousness. Paul's Rubenesque figure is most effectively showcased at 0:24 into "Another Girl". Compare him to George and John. There's a reason I date dudes, and it's not "because I think Beyonce has a hot body."
Secondly: he looks so uncomfortable when he plays the babe like a guitar (1:07, 1:41)! It's really gross and sexist to play a babe like a guitar, but if you're going to play a babe like a guitar, you ought to be raunchy about it. They really picked the wrong Beatle to play a babe like a guitar. This is probably the sole occasion I will ever champion Mick Jagger over Paul McCartney at anything, but I think Mick could probably show Paul a thing or two about how to be a sexy dirtbag at playing a babe like a guitar. Paul looks like a cherub and that is adorable and I love him. But he also looks like he would be more at home drinking apple juice than whiskey, and possibly wearing a bib while doing so.
He really works that black t-shirt, however. It compliments his alabaster complexion.
LIZ: Right now I'm reading a book about Paul McCartney; the third chapter starts like this: "He had a softness about him in those days. He was still a little chubby, for one thing - the layer of baby fat that saw Paul into early adolescence had stuck with him, thanks in part to the cakes and treats supplied to the motherless McCartney boys from their loving aunts. This weakness proved useful to younger brother Mike, who realized early on that he could always provoke an explosion from Paul with a well-timed catcall of fatty." Oh poor teenage Paul, you motherless little cake-eating fatty! Of course, Paul slimmed down in due time, but it's funny that he held onto "the rump," at least for the duration of the "Another Girl" video. More importantly, it intensifies my Paul affinity tenfold, on account of the fact that I too am possessed of a "bodacious ass." It's both a blessing and burden - like, sometimes you're walking down the street in Venice and a car pulls up and a dude leans out and asks, "Hey, where'd a white girl like you get an ass like that?" and it's so annoying and steam comes out of your ears as you shout back: "Ah, put a sock in it, will ya?!"* before stomping away. And then other times you want to post Califone's "Your Golden Ass" in Heavy Rotation and comment "This one goes out to MYSELF" and maybe pair it with "Ms. New Booty," but then you get shy and chicken out. But most of the time it's all pretty awesome, and I'm sorta sad for "Another Girl" Paul that this is one shared gift of ours that's not so much of asset on "his end." Okay, I'm stopping now.
*Sadly, my actual response was "SHUT UP!", and I probably sounded a lot like Cherita in Donnie Darko.
JOHN: THE MOST GALLANT GOOFBALL IN THE WORLD, EVS
LIZ: As everyone in the world already knows, 1965 John Lennon is my favorite John Lennon. "Another Girl" is like the apex of the vortex of 1965 John cuteness, a veritable carnival of cute, maybe even The Cuteness World's Fair. John in that jaunty little cap that makes me want to marry him? John on drums? John lying in a hole and doing weird arm-dancing moves while George towers over him with his foxy guitar? John doing more weird arm-dancing at 1:52 and grinning like the most gallant goofball in the world evs? Slays me, all of it. "Don't ever change, 'Another Girl' John!" I shout out semi-asshole-ishly, and feel halfway bad about it, but not really.
LJ: I will never think John Lennon is sexy. Bros shouldn't bang their bros, you know? Still- what a sweet goon! In other news, isn't it weird to see the 1965 Beatles wearing pale denim in a tropical location? Before 1965, you only ever saw them wearing black suits in Britain. Or America or wherever. Or grey suits.
GEORGE: IT'S GEORGE
LJ: This video marks a pivotal moment in George Harrison's transition from ugly gawky duckling to dark, sexy swan. In A Hard Day's Night, George Harrison is a bony-looking child. By HELP!, George Harrison has become the #1 Person from All Human History I Would Most Want To Have Sex With. Speaking of dudes playing babes like they were a guitar: please fast-forward "Another Girl" to 1:49. I wish George Harrison would play me like he plays that guitar, and I mean that sluttily. Wouldn't it be awesome if I got the words I'D RATHER BE HAVING SEX WITH GEORGE HARRISON tattooed across my forehead?
LIZ: Whoa, is it creepy that I've kinda got the hots for A Hard Day's Night George? Sure, he looks about 12 and all, but in that first scene I just want to rip that weird crusty roll or whatever from his hands, toss it out the train window, muss up his hair, and French him for a good ten minutes or so. Gross?
Anyway, yes, John is the cutest "Another Girl" Beatle, but George wins the sexy cookoff yet again. He's like the Yankees of Beatles Sexiness. I hate the Yankees but I love George Harrison. Life is a mind puzzle - an awesome mind puzzle.
Friday , November 6, 2009
All-Time Top 5 Reasons Why "Hello Goodbye" by The Beatles is the Best Video Ever Made
I. THE DANCE SEQUENCE, THE WAVING-AT-THE-CAMERA BITS, AND EVERYTHING BEFORE, AFTER & IN-BETWEEN
What I mean is: If you've never seen the "Hello Goodbye" video before, you should probably watch it now, as it's maybe the most happy-making thing you'd could possibly do right this instant. What I also mean is: Imagine what a more beautiful world it would be if everybody took "Hello Goodbye" Video Breaks instead of coffee breaks or cigarette breaks? If that was the way you "recharged your batteries"? Like, in the middle of some shitty-hectic day at the office, your pal Susie from accounts receivable would buzz you for a quick chat and you'd be all, "Yeah, cool, just come with me while I watch the 'Hello Goodbye' video" - and then you'd do just that, and afterward you'd both feel totally refreshed and ready to take on the day! And after work you'd probably still feel amazing enough to plant pink daisies in a community garden or calculate an algorithm for world peace. Try it for a week and see what happens. You can probably drink your coffee and/or smoke your cigarette while you watch, even. (Liz)
II. THREE MINUTES AND THIRTY-THREE SECONDS OF RINGO STARR BEING MY FAVOURITE BEATLE
For a long time, I claimed that Ringo looks like a "robot mouse" in the "Hello Goodbye" video, but I have since changed my opinion, because 1) I think it's dumb to write about robots, and 2) I think "mice" is a really pedestrian choice of rodent to say a Beatle, or anybody, bears resemblance to. The truth is, Ringo looks like a gopher in the "Hello Goodbye" video. Actually, he looks like a "tot gopher", which is a term I just invented to describe Ringo Starr's physical appearance in the "Hello Goodbye" video, especially at 1:47, when he shakes his head and smiles. I mean this as an extreme compliment. Also, on "Hello Goodbye" day, Ringo Starr was having the greatest hair day of his entire life.
Richie's such a champ for being the Beatle who agreed to wear the pink Sgt. Pepper suit. He works it. Dudes should take sartorial cues from "Hello Goodbye" Ringo more often, and wear tons of pink. Once, I was on a drug, and I was hallucinating in my head, and I imagined the Ringo album cover came to life, only instead of "RINGO", it said "RINGO IS PINK." It only now occurs to me what my subconscious was going for. Neat! (Laura Jane)
"Ringo, I Love You", by Bonnie Jo Mason, AKA Cherilyn Sarkisian, AKA CHER
Tags: Barker loves the Beatles, dourness, George Harrison, hallucinating, Hello Goodbye, Hello Goodbye Video Breaks, John Lennon, Laura loves the Beatles, Paul McCartney, pink daisies, Ringo Starr, sexy comedy, time travel, tot gophers, world peace
Monday , October 19, 2009
LIZ AND LJ ON: Baby Liz and Baby LJ!
This is kinda the "Muppet Babies" edition of LIZ AND LJ ON, a heart-meltingly cute look at what Liz and LJ were like before they grew up to put on their absurdist song-and-dance variety show/write blog posts about wanting to make out with Marilyn Manson and Tommy Lee. Sadly, since they were born about seven and half years apart, Liz and LJ never got to be animal orphans together and ride around the nursery in a cardboard box while pretending to be in an Indiana Jones movie. Maybe they'll try that whenever they're next in the same city together, to make up for lost time and stuff. In the meanwhile...
LIZ ON LIZ: The two most important things about this photo are that (1) I'm wearing pigtails, and I still wear pigtails and (2) my stuffed lamb was called Hullace, a name I made up all by myself. Isn't that so weird and fantastic? Hullace! Sometime around this age I also decided that all "rabbits who are artists" should be called "Delvert." I was such an amazing child.
LJ ON LIZ: You all know she's just making this up, right? Babies don't know what artists are. I'm really into how far up Baby Liz's righthand pigtail stretches. It's pretty punk rock, for a baby.
LIZ ON LJ ON LIZ: Ummm, I'M SO NOT MAKING THIS UP! Call my mom and ask her; she looooooves to tell the Delvert story. Her cell phone number's the same as mine, but the last digit's a 1 instead of a 3.
LJ ON LJ: Baby Laura's manic smile and psychotic eye-glint give much weight to the "nature" side of the age-old "nature vs. nurture" debate. This is the eighteen-month-old equivalent of how I look after drinking half a pitcher of sangria, listening to "I Am The Walrus" seventeen times on headphones, and run-swaggering home to go write some essay called "If The Beastie Boys Were a Kinks Song on 'Ludes They'd Actually be Band On The Run," or something. Way to "John Lennon it", Baby Laura!
LIZ ON LJ: Sometime in college I went through this weird phase of sending everybody those bizarro Anne Geddes greeting cards all the time, mostly because I legitimately believed they were totally adorable. Little did stupid collegiate me know that three fat babies wearing fuzzy bunny suits and stuffed inside a pink Easter basket have got nothing on the total adorableness that is LJ wearing a fuzzy blanket and stuffed into her high chair! And how!
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Sunday , September 27, 2009
"Getting Back To Where We Once Belonged," by Elizabeth Barker & Laura Jane Faulds
INTRO. "THE VERSUS A" (Laura Jane)
The other night, I was talking to Elizabeth Barker on the telephone. We were talking about John Lennon, Paul McCartney, "dichotomies," and how "John v. Paul" is pretty much "The Ultimate Dichotomy." If you're ever trying to further your understanding of "good vs. bad" or "cool vs. lame," "sex vs. love" or "crazy vs. sane"- you may as well just spare yourself a whole lot of hassle, and examine the polarity in question through the "Lennon v. McCartney" lens. From Hamburg to HELP!, "Helter Skelter" to "How Do You Sleep?"- John and Paul already did most of the work for you.
That night, Barker was talking about how Philip Norman's seminal Lennon biog is called The Life, whereas the upcoming Paul McCartney mondo-bio is entitled A Life. Facetiously, Liz suggested that perhaps "The vs. A" is the most enlightening "John v. Paul"-specific opposition of all. We laughed, bantered, moved on, and later, hung up. Some hours passed, the night fell, I got bored, was alone. I got to thinking about "The vs. A," and, hilariously, reached the surprising conclusion that "The vs. A" actually does say (almost) everything about the "John v. Paul" dichotomy.
Paul McCartney as an individual is not particularly compelling. He's "just a guy." He's adorable and charismatic of course, but Paul's gift is for storytelling above all else. Paul's stories are golden. They are meticulously-crafted, and they are perfect. Paul songs sound like Paul (jaunty; well-rounded), but they're never about Paul. They are objects unto themselves.
John Lennon, on the other hand, is the object. John songs are haunting and disorderly, because John Lennon lived a haunted and disordered life. John songs are explicitly about what it felt like to be John Lennon on the day he wrote it; each one is imbued with the same beguile, neurosis and emotional intensity that makes John Lennon's life story so captivating within itself.
Paul McCartney is a genius because he wrote those songs; John Lennon was a genius because he wrote those songs. Paul McCartney nails it; John Lennon wings it. Paul McCartney was a Beatle, but John Lennon was The Beatles.
Perhaps Elizabeth Barker would beg to differ, but instead, she'll tell you a story...
Tags: alcohol, apples, boyfriends, boys, Christmas, cockiness, dichotomies, Elizabeth Barker, Girl, Helter Skelter, John Lennon, Kurt Cobain, Laura Jane Faulds, Laura Loves The Beatles, marijuana, Michael Jackson, Paul McCartney, sexism, The Beatles, Whole Foods
Wednesday , July 15, 2009
LIZ & LJ ON: L.A. Candy by Lauren Conrad
"HEART OF RETARDEDNESS*," BY LAURA JANE
It took me two torturous weeks to get through Lauren Conrad's L.A. Candy, approximately twenty-three hours and 45 minutes longer than it should have taken me to read a novel written at the reading level of a five-year-old with a learning disability. In the midst of my "reading" it, a friend of mine came over and noticed the jacketless book sitting on my coffee table. "CONRAD" is written down the side of the spine in bold, overconfident red. "Oh, cool!" he said, "You're reading Joseph Conrad?"
"Nope!" I said, " I'm reading Lauren Conrad."
Needless to say, Lauren Conrad is not the Joseph Conrad of 2009, though L.A. Candy does use the word "frisson" twice. I wonder how she learned the word "frisson"? I guess she thesaurus.commed "thrill," or maybe Brody Jenner told her it (I don't think Brody Jenner told her it). Beyond "frisson," however, L.A. Candy is the worst-written piece of crap shit trash shit filth puke boring lame annoying garbage I've ever read in my life. On page 173, Conrad writes, "Worry marred his smooth, Asian-American face." Worry marred his smooth, Asian-American face. That sentence is so horrific, it's almost brilliant. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS AN ASIAN-AMERICAN FACE.
L.A. Candy tells the tale of two ordinary girls named Jane ("The Dull Sweetheart") and Scarlett ("The Slutty Genius") who become co-stars on a Hills-style reality show called (you guessed it!) L.A. Candy. At first I was stoked because I thought that Jane was Lauren and Scarlett was Audrina, and I wanted some "Audrina's skanky exploits" gossip, but quickly gathered that Lauren Conrad is too stupid to write a character that is not "Lauren Conrad." It seems that Jane and Scarlett are meant to represent the two sides of Lauren Conrad; tragically, I think she is attempting to communicate to her audience that, in real life, she is "complex." This is true, if you use the word "complex" to denote "having more than one personality trait."
For me, the real highlight of L.A. Candy was imagining real-life Lauren Conrad writing it. How did this happen? What was her "creative process"? I bet she was all uppity about it- "Sorry, Brody Jenner. I totally can't come out to Les Deux/ a skeezy pool party/ fly to Cabo in your private jet. I have to stay home and work on my novel." What a fucking bitch. L.A. Candy is the worst shit I've ever read in my life. It is isn't even readable on the most basal level of "so trashy and dumb it's entertaining." Whatever energy you could harness into reading L.A. Candy can be more effectively focused on pitying Elizabeth Barker and Laura Jane Faulds for doing the dirty work for you. We are martyrs. Do not read this book.
The Hills is a legitimately compelling cultural phenomenon because a) it's a reality TV show, but the characters never acknowledge it, which is thought-provoking, and b) it's fascinating to observe the vapid, idiotic, worthless cast live their worthless lives idiotically and say vapid shit about worthless nothing. I've always been of the opinion that what saves The Hills from being entirely unbearable and depressing is the placement of LC at its forefront, since she seems moderately less retarded than Speidi, Audrina, Brody Jenner, et al. "Reading" L.A. Candy taught me that this is, in fact, not the case. Lauren Conrad is not smarter than Speidi, Audrina, Brody Jenner, et al. She's just more boring.
* I have refrained from saying "retarded" on nogoodforme.com for two years and two months, as it is understandably offensive. But, in this case, there is no other applicable word.
"IN WHICH LC FORGETS THAT SMELLY HIPSTERS MAKE HER WANT TO COMMIT SUICIDE" BY LIZ
I AGREE WITH EVERYTHING LJ JUST SAID! Here are some other really fucking stupid things about L.A. Candy:
-It's like if, at age 9, after polishing off all the books in the Sweet Valley High series, I'd decided to write my own novel in which everyone talks exactly like Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield. In L.A. Candy, boys say things like "Penny for your thoughts," and girls sweetly reply: "Sorry, Braden. It's gonna cost you a little more than a penny to hear my thoughts." BUT NO ONE EVER TALKS LIKE THAT. No 19-year-old girl drinking an apple martini at Lola's in 2009 has ever said "It's gonna cost you a little more than a penny to hear my thoughts," and none ever will. I guess that's a beautiful thing about life, and Lola's.
-It is so boring! No one ever does anything bad! Probably the most startling example of illicit behavior is when Madison ("The Bitch") slips Scar ("The Free-Thinking Feminist") a pain pill in the spa lobby right before Scar gets her bikini line lasered. Seriously. That is totally the most juicy part of the entire book. In the words of another Free-Thinking Feminist*: "Yawn! Like, SUPERFUCKINYAWN!"
(*Kathleen Hanna, on the Mike Watt record Ball-Hog or Tugboat?, FYI)
-This is maybe the worst string of sentences I've ever read in my life: "Wearing only a faded black tank and American Apparel boy briefs, Scarlett recalled the dozens of times guys had told her how hot she looked in this particular ensemble. But her appearance was not a quality she thought much about. In fact, her attractiveness sometimes got in the way of what she really wanted. It made other girls jealous of her and, consequently, they snubbed her (at best) or acted like sabotaging, PMS-plagued, psycho bitches from hell (at worst). It made guys unable to see past her super-long, wavy black hair, olive skin, and piercing green eyes to actually connect with her brain, which she worked hard to cultivate and was actually quite proud of."
-The ending is such a non-ending, I immediately flipped to the next page and mistakenly started reading the acknowledgments as if it were the next chapter. LJ calls it "The Best Surprise Ending Since The Usual Suspects." That is so smart of LJ. Someone should give her a book contract!
So yeah, that's all gross and horrible, but for me the worst thing about L.A. Candy is The Braden Problem. When LJ posted Teen Vogue's excerpt of the book on Facebook a while back, I got to the part about a noncommittal scamp named Braden and my heart went boom. "Braden is Brody Jenner! Braden is Brody Jenner!" I cried out silently, merrily clapping in a metaphoric kind of way. 'Cause a funny thing about me is I kind of love Brody Jenner, in all his magnificent douchebagginess. But: Braden is not Brody Jenner. Braden is this hideously milquetoast actor-dude who's "really not into that whole Hollywood thing" and has big dreams of becoming a star of the indie screen. He has a roommate who listens to cool bands like Death Cab for Cutie and MGMT. Like Scar, Braden is a free-thinker, except he's also a whiny loser whom I want to sock in the nose. If I were stuck at Cabo Cantina with Braden, I'd spend the entire time slyly turning to whoever was at the next table, rolling my eyes and making that jerking-off gesture with my right hand as my left hand maintained a death-grip on my margarita glass, and all the while Braden would obliviously keep babbling on about his stupid fucking indie-film career.
So, a message to Lauren Conrad: Please please please knock off this whole "fetishizing indieness" thing. Though we all believe "Electric Feel" to be a hot jam, I'm a thousand percent certain that hipsterism is not the right direction for you. Remember that time you said you'd rather kill yourself than make out with Justinbobby, because Justinbobby has bad hygiene? Yeah, "real" indie dudes are even grosser than Justinbobby. And remember that other time when you told Audrina about all the sacrifices you make for her, how you're always "awkwardly bobbing [your] head at the weird shows"? "Real" indie shows are even weirder than whatever emo-pop shit Audrina subjects you to. Instead of trying to find yourself a Braden, maybe stick with what you know and keep on hanging around Brody Jenner. I know he's taken, but you guys seem to have a cute kinda buddyship going on (like, that time you were on a friend date and you said, "Cheers, Big Ears!" as you raised your glasses in a toast? Adorable!). You could get Brodes to teach you to surf, and maybe set you up with one of his friends, ideally none of the "asshats" we've already seen him hang around with on the show. Like, who's this Nick character I keep hearing so much about on Brody's Twitter? He seems like a nice fellow! Yeah, go out with him. Do that. Just please don't write another fucking book. Please?
Tags: Brody Jenner, feminism, fetishizing indieness, free-thinkers, Joseph Conrad, Justin Bobby, Kathleen Hanna, L.A. Candy, Lauren Conrad, literary masterpieces, magnificent douchebagginess, retardedness, The Hills, The Usual Suspects
Monday , June 8, 2009
LIZ & LJ ON: The Beastie Boys Through the Ages
Not counting the Beatles and the Beach Boys, the Beastie Boys are the best band on Capitol Records whose name begins with B-E-A. They are also one of the most unique bands ever to have existed, somehow carving for themselves this strange musical niche of rhythmically whining about funk music, television programs from the 1970s, New York City landmarks, and their own names. As far as noted dude-and-music pundits Elizabeth Barker and Laura Jane Faulds of nogoodforme.com are concerned, the cultural climate of Two Thousand "The Shittiest Year Yet!" And Nine is nowhere near Beastie-centric enough; today, we are utilizing the "depth of perception in [our] text, y'all" to rectify this massive generational oversight. Get it together and see what's happenin', Kids Today!
EXHIBIT A: TEENAGE BEASTIES AT PUNK ROCK SHOW, 1983
LIZ: When I bought Some Old Bullshit 15 years ago, I assumed that hardcore-era Beastie Boys were these snarling, bad-ass punks all into breaking bottles over their heads and shit. But apparently they were just a bunch of skinny kids not even trying to come off punk, which is awesome. Mike looks like every boy I knew at my nerdy elementary-school summer camp, where we took classes on archaeology and Greek mythology and "fiber arts" instead of doing normal-kid summer-camp things. That green windbreaker just tickles me! And it's so neat to see Kate Schellenbach from Luscious Jackson on drums. I'm charmed by Adam Yauch's intensity and have nothing to say about Adam Horovitz.
LAURA JANE: If I could describe Mike D's performance of "Where's the White Shadow?" (or whatever) in two words, they would be "lacking charisma." Ad-Rock, it seems, is one of those people who will always look exactly the same. It doesn't matter if he's two years old or eighty years old, he will be a small, wiry black labrador puppy type of dude, with milk chocolate eyes and a lopsided smile. Baby MCA reminds me of Charlie Brown. Maybe Linus.
LIZ: Baby MCA reminds me of Schroeder!
EXHIBIT B: MCA, MIKE D, AN AD-ROCK LOOKALIKE, AND ANOTHER DUDE LOUNGIN', 1986
LAURA JANE: For the longest time, I thought the dude on the left was Ad-Rock. I had a whole hilarious paragraph written up in my head about how frat-core Ad-Rock looks in this photo, and what a beautiful world it would be it would be if every frat boy as frat boy-y as Ad-Rock in this photo grew up to become a scrappy, scratchy feminist as did Ad-Rock, but, it's not Ad-Rock. It's a stranger. That being said, I really "feel" MCA in this photo. He's a man, and nothing but. Calling MCA a dude is like calling Cary Grant a dude; it's almost disrespectful. The hottest thing about MCA is that he's, like, beyond being a dude. As for Mike Diamond, well, um, shit. Mike D prior to 1992 is like the dude at the bar who is trying with all his might to get you to tongue-kiss him before the night is through, but there is NO CHANCE. I find it interesting how chubby his face was for so long. And I question whether or not Mike D really loved Motorhead that much, or was he just being before-his-time ironic? I am also confused by the actuality of Mike D's hair texture. In 1998, did he straighten it with a straightening iron?
LIZ: I'm into this photo because it allows me to imagine an alternate reality in which the mid- to late-80s Beastie Boys posed as heshers instead of frat boys. In alotta ways heshers are my favorite breed of boy, and even though Mike and Adam aren't in full-on hesher mode here, it's still enough to melt my butter/float my boat/stack my sandwich/tick my tock, etc. My mind's also real bottled by the "pre-ironic or no?" query re Mike's Motorhead t-shirt. Mike D, if you're reading this, which you probably are, please share with us: Do/did you really love Motorhead that much? Comment "yes" or "no." Thanks. I love you so much. And, hey, I just re-looked at this photo and realized Adam's really not hesher at all, but whatevs: His hair looks feathered, even though it's not. That is so beautiful to me.
P.S. I thought that was Ad-Rock too!
LAURA JANE: I have never heard the term "hesher" before in my life! I suppose it's before my time; by 1996, the year I became intellectually astute enough to define the fashion concepts of others through slang-y lump terms, all the heshers had grown up to be yuppie dentists, I guess. But yes, I like heshers too. "Hesher Chic" is something definitely worth exploring, in my opinion. Sorry to digress, but I just want to double-check with you: Sebastian Bach's a hesher, right?
LIZ: No, Sebastian Bach is way too glam to be a hesher. Garth Algar is a hesher.
EXHIBIT C: "HEY LADIES" MUSIC VIDEO, 1988
LAURA JANE: Ad-Rock is by far and away my favorite Beastie Boy. I relate to him like crazy, in the same way I relate to Keith Moon. To say I feel like they could be my brothers is to sell them both short, and by a long shot. They are my TWINS or nothing, unless all three of us were triplets, which would be THE FUNNEST LIFE EVER. Oh, the mischief we three scamps would get up to!
"Hey Ladies" features one of my fave B-Boys "rhymes" ever- "She's talking to The Kid/I'm telling her every lie that you know that I never did." I relate to being "The Kid." I also relate to the gift of the gab being the gift that I have, because it is- and how!
Mike D's face is beginning to slim down in this one. I love when they do the triple high-five at 1:22. If the nogoodforme troika were the Beastie Boys, I'd be Horovitz, of course-o-vitz ("Laur-Rock"), Kat Asharya would be MCA ("MCK"), and Liz Barker would be Mike D ("Liz B") Money Emily Richmond would be Money Mark Nishita.
LIZ: The "Hey Ladies" vid is both Mike-D-centric and L.A.-centric, which rules for me because (a) Mike D is my fave Beastie Boy and (b) L.A. is my fave thing in general. I really like the part when Ad-Rock goes "I'm telling her every lie that you know that I never did" too, but mostly because I think it's cool how he's eating while he says it. I also really like the idea of dudes constantly blow-drying their hair.
LAURA JANE: If I like the dude, I like it when the dude is doing anything. That's sort of the core principle of why I love the Beasties so dearly, fondly and eternally- it's three cute dudes! What could they possibly mess up?
EXHIBIT D: "SO WHAT'CHA WANT" MUSIC VIDEO, 1992
LIZ: Probably the thing I miss most about high school is living in a world where everyone was obsessed with the Beastie Boys. Our love was so deep, in fact, the principal made the prom DJ shut off "So What'cha Want" halfway through cuz everyone was thrashing all around and going totally b-a-n-a-n-a-s. So yeah, this vid marks the high-school moment when the Beasties became Very Very Important to me; I remember spending many afternoons after school with Check Your Head blasting on my walkman while I jumped around the basement, pretending my life was all shot with heat-sensitive cameras and I looked halfway as cool as MCA in his plaid-flannel and wool hat. Nowadays I'd probably rather date someone who looks like MCA in the "So What'cha Want" video, but I still want my life to be all shot in heat-sensitive cameras. Also, this my favorite video dancing ever. Also, "motherfucker" is bleeped out really geniusly. Also, I really want to Twitter "Well, I think I'm losing my mind this time, this time I'm losing my mind, that's right, said I think I'm losing my mind this time, this time I'm losing my mind," but it's 19 characters too long. What bullshit.
LAURA JANE: MCA wins the "So What'cha Want" hotness prize, but Mike D wins the "So What'cha Want" "best t-shirt" prize. I never lived in a world where everybody loved the Beastie Boys. The closest I ever came to living in a world where everybody loved the Beastie Boys happened over the space of six months in 2002, when the subject of every e-mail Liz Barker and I sent to one another had to be a Beastie Boys lyric. My favorite was when Liz pulled out "Like the cherry to the apple to the peach to the plum"- basically, the Beastie Boys invented Joanna Newsom. Also, Liz, remember when all our e-mail subject lines were popular song lyrics with Steve Martin's name subbed in?
EXHIBIT E: "GRATITUDE" MUSIC VIDEO, 1992
LIZ: Ad-Rock is so my least favorite Beastie Boy; I relate to him zero, mostly because he comes off really aggressively extroverted, which is kinda the opposite of me. All the girls always thought he was the cutest and I never ever got it, but the "Gratitude" video made it all click. He looks goddamn great, the best of the bunch - and that's no small feat, considering all three Beasties are really dynamite-looking here (MCA in particular gets a thousand thumbs up for hotly chewing gum as he's slappin' da bass, mon). It should also be noted that I'd rank "Gratitude" number-one on my list of Beastie Boys Songs That Don't Sound Like What the Beastie Boys Usually Sound Like. At the opposite end of the list we have "Sabrosa" and anything else "jazzy." Yuck.
LAURA JANE: Elizabeth Barker and I have exact opposite "Gratitude" opinions.
However, Ad-Rock is gross in this video. They all are, but especially Ad-Rock. Why the fuzzy burgundy backwards Kangol cap? It's terrible! Liz, was that kind of thing legitimately cool in 1992? I wouldn't know, I was too busy being seven. Also, I don't enjoy listening to "Gratitude" at all, though I'm really into the concept of being gracious right now. My favourite Beastie Boys songs that don't sound like normal Beastie Boys songs are "Song for the Man" and "Instant Death," which makes me cry.
LIZ: I'm in such disbelief over every word Laura Jane Faulds just wrote, I feel like she must be playing some kind of belated April Fools joke on me. But probably she's not. Weird!
I guess one thing I kind of agree with is that "Song for the Man" is a hot jam. The rest just mystifies.
LAURA JANE: You never answered my question about the fuzzy burgundy backwards Kangol cap. Are you purposely ignoring me?
LIZ: [ignores Laura Jane]
EXHIBIT F: "NETTY'S GIRL" MUSIC VIDEO, 1992
LIZ: My favorite thing about the "Netty's Girl" video is that, had Mike pedaled his bike precisely one-third of a mile further down Glendale Blvd, he would've ended up at the first apartment I lived at in L.A. My second favorite thing is that Mike's wearing a superfly Newport cigarettes shirt, plus a really good hat. My third favorite thing is that I too have ridden the Echo Park Lake paddleboats, so it's kind of like I'm in the video. (A tip: Don't attempt the paddleboats unless you've slept at least five hours and are very un-hungover; otherwise you'll probably end up just floating around the whole time, which is boring.) My fourth favorite thing is how Mike's lip-synching is mega-lazy, lazier even than paddleboating on zero sleep and an epic night of beer and Jager. My fifth favorite thing is the look on the other dude's face at 2:13. My sixth favorite thing is the quick shot of Ad-Rock snuggling with Ione Skye, who is named after my iPod. Oh, and I also like that the video is directed by Mike's wife Tamra Davis, who is awesome but not named after my iPod. R.I.P. Netty's!
LAURA JANE: Blah, blah, blah. Mike D is on a boat. I don't get it.
EXHIBIT G: "ROOT DOWN (REMIX)" VIDEO FROM THE TIBETAN FREEDOM CONCERT, 1997
LAURA JANE: A few paragraphs ago, I rhetorically asked the Universe how the Beastie Boys could ever go wrong. And then I remembered: they could be Mike D at the 1997 Tibetan Freedom Concert. If Mike D were anybody else in the world besides Mike D (or one of the other Beastie Boys, or one of the Beatles), his stupid little mini-braids would be an unforgivable crime of fashion. They are the Mike D equivalent of Leighton Meester's stupid Met Gala outfit. When I was in my sophomore year of college, I once printed out a picture of Mike D's stupid little mini-braids and propped it up on my roommate's pillow with an accompanying note reading "LOOK AT MY STUPID MINI-BRAIDS." True story, Ladies & Germs. I wonder if Mike D busted out the stupid mini-braids in an effort to look as cool as the dreadlocked dude who appears at 0:55 seconds into this video. For three days in 1999, homeboy was seriously my dream dude.
PS: I think I'm going to start a new column on nogoodforme.com called "If Mike D were Leighton Meester." The possibilities are endless!
LIZ: We are in agreeance on this one. If Mike D always had hair like that, I'd never like him. Contrarywise, if Ad-Rock always had hair like that, I'd never not be in love with him.
EXHIBIT H: SPIN MAGAZINE COVERS, 1998
LAURA JANE: These pictures are significant to me because, once upon a time, I was a weird thirteen-year-old who so very obsessed with the Beastie Boys that I kept up a Beastie Boys Binder with every Beastie Boys article and photograph I came across filed chronologically into plastic sleeves, as if the Beastie Boys were accounting. The day I rode my bicycle to Chapters and bought all three Beastie Boys SPIN issues certainly surpassed Christmas that year. I also like these pictures because I think all three o' my bros look exceedingly facially beautiful- MCA has an angelic quality to him here, and Mike D's eyes are as blue as the Great Barrier Reef. I spent my entire life searching for an Animal Liberation/Human Liberation t-shirt so I could be cool as Adam Horovitz in this photograph; a year ago, I finally achieved my goal, and now I even have a tote bag of it too! By the by, if you Google-search "ad-rock human liberation," a thing I wrote is the first article that comes up! Greatest accomplishment yet, Laura Jane!
LIZ: The most important thing about the shitty late '90s is it's kinda the last moment when Mike, Adam & Adam were 100% percent the Beastie Boys as we know and love them. To the 5 Boroughs was such a dud, we're just gonna pretend it never happened, and I have no idea what the Beastie Boys are doing now besides making guest appearances on 30 Rock. But the Hello Nasty days were good days indeed - I saw that tour and just before they came onstage Mix Master Mike spun the opening bit of "Tom Sawyer" by Rush and it was sooo cool!
BTW, that Spin article's online here - it's an oral history (with Madonna and Henry Rollins and Molly Ringwald and Dr. Dre and other exciting people) and a damn good read. I remember reading it and getting sad about how, in the Licensed to Ill era, there was talk of kicking Mike out cuz he wasn't cool enough, and how Adam and Adam used to gang up on Mike and dump dirt on him while he was sleeping and stuff. I hope Kat and LJ don't do that to me when we go on tour!
EXHIBIT I: "LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON" PERFORMANCE OF "SO WHAT'CHA WANT", 2009
LAURA JANE: After thirty years of finding Mike D. straight-up "not hot," suddenly, at age forty trillion, he's like, the flyest dude I've ever seen. His outfit is a gift. Dear every dude in the world: if you want chicks who care about clothes to like you, just wear some variation of this Mike D. look every day for the rest of your life, and before you know it, all the Kat, Liz and Laura Janes of the world will be writing you gushy love-notes tucked into cardstock envelopes sprayed with their perfume. I am really proud of all the two-weeks-ago-era Beastie Boys' shoe choices. I am also proud of Ad-Rock for going gray gracefully, or "gray-cefully"; sadly (or 'tragically,' even), the same cannot be said of Adam Yauch. Adam Yauch in 2009 is so schlumpy-dump and grandfatherly, he makes my actual grandfather, who is eighty, seem spry. I realize dude's a Buddhist and, like, above it, but seriously, MCA? Get with the program (the program being "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon")! Not that I've ever read Buddhist scriptures or anything, but I highly doubt Siddhartha Gautama ever said shit about how you should wear a sack on national television. In my opinion, it's time for MCA to invest in a cool caftan. Or a Mike D. cardigan, at very least.
LIZ: I don't care if Ad-Rock's going gray gracefully; I mostly just think he looks boring. MCA doesn't seem like MCA anymore to me, at all. I miss MCA. Where is MCA?
I'm trying to imagine myself being into a dude wearing some variation of this Mike D. look, and the only way it works is if the dude's actually Mike D. I'll probably never love a non-Mike-D man in a cardigan, but you know: Life is full of surprises. Up until this vid I was kinda depressed about how very un-boyish Mike D's looking lately, but now that all seems silly. He looks great and seems like he's having the most fun of anyone, so bully for him. I'm so happy for Michael Diamond and his huge, huge hair. Way to win at life, Mike.
LAURA JANE: It all came full circle for Mike D! He's come a long way since being the loser who had dirt thrown on him.
By the way, Liz B, I'd obviously never throw dirt at you (though I can't speak for MCK). But, if you continue to evade answering my fuzzy burgundy Kangol cap Q, I very well may dress in black, sneak up around the back, begin my attack, and before you know it-
THE EGGS WILL CRACK ON LIZ BARKER'S BACK.
Tags: Adam "Ad-Rock" Horovitz, Adam "MCA" Yauch, Beastie Boys, burgundy fuzzy backwards Kangol caps, heshers, if Mike D were Leighton Meester, Ione Skye the iPod, Keith Moon, L.A. rules, Madonna, Mike D, paddleboating, Peanuts, throwing eggs at Elizabeth Barker, Wayne's World