Monday Motivation: Writers’ Wisdom

Some wise words from some brilliant authors. Keep on keepin’ on, y’all.

My Favorite YouTubers

Featuring: Extremely Decent, Simon’s Cat, Thatcher Joe, Zoella, Jenna Marbles, and Marcus Butler.

British siblings Zoe and Joe both have YouTube channels with over 5 million subscribers between the two of them. Zoe filmed Joe trying to do her makeup without any instructions. In return, Joe had to let Zoe put makeup on him and post it on his channel. Hilarious. Zoe’s channel is called Zoella, and Joe’s is called ThatcherJoe – because he is literally a roof thatcher (I didn’t even know those still existed in places like England).

The makers of this video, Extremely Decent, are actually a group of comedians living in L.A. They don’t put out videos too often, but when they do, they are marvelous. I highly recommend you also check out their video “A Facebook Update in Real Life.”

Simon’s Cat is a collection of short animated clips about… well, cats’ antics. The drawings are fairly simple, but spot-on and pretty amusing.

Jenna Marbles: the Queen of YouTube. Her videos are basically social commentary with a lot of sass. She also has the two weirdest, awkwardest, and somehow still most adorable dogs ever, Kermit and Marbles, who always make an appearance at the end of her videos.

Here’s a video collab. that Joe did with Alfie from PointlessBlog. They basically play hot potato with a ball that randomly shoots off electric shocks. Panic ensues – particularly when Alfie realizes he only knows four Harry Potter characters.

Here’s a video collab. on Marcus Butler’s channel. Two 20-somethings try to cut each other’s hair. There’s a lot of freaking out and a lot of fake girly voices. “Dude, your fringe is RIDICULOUS! I’m going to give it a feathered look.” “NO! I don’t want a feathered look!”

Nick Miller: the Voice of Law Students Everywhere

On last night’s new episode of “New Girl,” Schmidt got sued and reluctantly hired Nick as his lawyer. You know, Nick Miller. He’s the guy who dropped out of law school (but still took the bar exam and passed) and has never litigated a case before in his life. Nick’s pitch to Schmidt is pretty much the equivalent of the pep talk I give to myself before delivering an oral argument in class.

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Also, at the end of the plaintiff’s deposition, he says this:

International Women’s Day

In honor of International Women’s Day, check out this fascinating TedX Talk given by activist Courtney Martin. She talks about how the definition of feminism has changed for millennials. It’s not just about women’s right to work anymore. It’s about immigration, human rights, community organizing, online petitions, and more. She also addresses one of the many paradoxes of our generation: we supremely overestimate ourselves at times, and deeply underestimate ourselves at other times.

Many in my generation – because of well-intentioned parenting and self-esteem education – were socialized to believe that we were special little snowflakes who were going to go out and save the world… We walk across graduation stages, high on our overblown expectations, and when we float back down to earth,we realize we don’t know what the heck it means to actually save the world anyway. The mainstream media often paints my generation as apathetic, and I think it’s much more accurate to say we are deeply overwhelmed. 

Happy one-month birthday to my blog!

Squee! The Hashtag Generation turned one-month-old yesterday! In honor of this little milestone, I thought I’d write something a little more traditionally bloggy. So, I present you with a list of my most random favorite things.

My top three favorite TV shows (that are currently airing): Suits, Scandal, New Girl.

My favorite song: This is hard. If we’re going to be objective about it, then we’ve got to use the most played song in my iTunes library. That would be “The Scientist” by Coldplay, which has gotten 400 spins over the past several years. However, my favorite song at the moment is a tie between “Out of My League” by Fitz & the Tantrums and “Love Me Again” by John Newman.

My favorite blog: Hyperbole and a Half.

My favorite law humor blog12(b)(6): failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.

My favorite place: THIS. It’s also probably one of my favorite photographs that I’ve taken.

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My favorite meme: Paranoid Parrot. Although Anxiety Cat is a close second.

My favorite 90’s sitcomBoy Meets World. Still watch it to this day.

My favorite person to follow on Twitter: Mindy Kaling. Examples of her tweets:
“If I ever meet a murderer hiding in my house, I can say truthfully: “I’ve been expecting you.” That will scare the hell out of him I bet.”
“Keith Morrison deserves a Golden Globe for his work on Dateline.”

My favorite non-person to follow on Twitter: Vanity Fair. Whoever is responsible for tweeting out on VF’s account during popular TV broadcasts (presidential debates, award shows, big sporting events) is incredibly sassy. I love it.

My favorite class: The Law of War. Yeah, that’s a real thing. It’s also known as international humanitarian law.

My favorite podcast: The Bobby Bones Show. I don’t listen to music in my car anymore – I just listen to podcasts of this nationally-syndicated morning show. The show used to air on Top 40 stations, but switched over to country stations a little over a year ago. Watch this video to get a feel for these crazy people (who, in my head, are my friends IRL):

My favorite news website: The Atlantic.

My favorite recipe I’ve found on a blog: French breakfast muffins. These things are loaded with butter and sugar, but they are so incredibly delicious. Once you start eating these, you won’t be able to stop.

Coldplay Needs an Intervention

(c) AZM 2010

Coldplay has released two new songs over the past couple of weeks. I finally mustered up the courage to listen to them today. They are terrible.

Let me just say that I have been a Coldplay fan for at least a decade. I own physical copies of all of the band’s albums. I can happily listen to “Viva la Vida and Death and All His Friends” from start to finish. I’ve been to one of their concerts (after which I became violently ill with the flu, but it was still totally worth it). Seven of the top ten songs in my iTunes library are their songs (ranging from “Clocks” to “Life in Technicolor II”). I know that a lot of people hate the band; they think its music is boring, annoying, and/or overrated. I was obviously never one of those people. But I’m becoming one of them now.

When I heard that Coldplay had released a new song late last month, I was afraid to listen to it. The group’s track record over the past two or three years has not been good. The song they cut for last year’s “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” soundtrack was an enormous let down. Their previous EP, “Mylo Xyloto” was easily their worst album. The only redeemable songs on it were the ones that were classic Coldplay: just Martin singing along with a guitar and piano until a steady-buildup to an epic final chorus. No bells. No whistles (literally or figuratively). The best song on that album is “Us Against the World,” and it is actually one of my favorite songs by them. Oddly enough, it would have been perfect for the “Catching Fire” soundtrack. I mean, the chorus includes the phrase “through chaos as it swirls/it’s us against the world.”

(c) 2014 AZM

Just when I thought Coldplay’s music couldn’t get any worse, it did. The band released the first single, “Midnight” off its forthcoming album, “Ghost Stories,” near the end of February. Lyrically speaking, the song has some great potential. But the band fails to deliver (also, is there even a band? I can’t even figure out what instruments are being played in the song).

“Midnight” appears to be suffering from an identity crisis. It has no idea what type of song it wants to be. Does it want to be a simple and eerie song? Does it want to be a lullaby? Does it want to be an EDM song? Does it want to be a Muse song? The answer to all of the above is YES. It tries to be all these things at once, but fails miserably. It sounds like the “ingredients” of the song were thrown in a blender and then produced by Keyboard Cat.

And then Martin’s voice is so synthesized that you can barely understand what he is saying. The song has no melody, no rhythm. It would be quickly forgettable if it wasn’t for the fact that it’s so bizarrely unintelligible that it made my ears bleed. Continue reading