Archive | November, 2011

Adventures of Bob and Greta: Jon McLaughlin Edition

28 Nov

Bob and Greta went out in NYC this weekend – and met Jon McLaughlin at the Bowery Ballroom!

Drummer, Bassist, Me, JonMcL, Guitarist, Blian (aka Bob)

I’ve always had anxiety when it comes to spur-of the-moment activities, but when my best friend invites me to see Jon McLaughlin in NYC, you better believe I’ll reply with a resounding YES! JonMcL has been on many of our playlists and has been a topic of potential a cappella arrangements.  Of all the JonMcL albums I’ve listened to, they all sound real, and I mean that in an emotional way. His lyrics are clear and relatable and his voice is so pure. Also, he looks like he could be an Abercrombie model (which doesn’t hurt…!). His voice was strong and impressive (what a range for a tenor!) throughout the whole concert – no sign of vocal fatigue – and he’s really good at working the crowd and garnering crowd involvement. Again, I can’t stress enough – he’s beautiful. 🙂

After the kick-ass set, JonMcL said he would be downstairs to meet everyone and sign autographs. We jumped on that like Paula Deen on butter. We were one of the first ones in line and he signed 2 cds for us and posed for a picture! After our star-struck moment, we popped back upstairs to watch the second band, Stephen Kellogg and the Sixers. I’m not a huge country fan, but this band does a bangin’ job of keeping it almost mainstream-alt-rock-folk-country (a la Taylor Swift, but with less blonde…) – if it wasn’t a genre before, it is now. I enjoyed it so much, and their lyrics were so catchy, that I bought their cd today. When we were ready to kick it, we went back downstairs: only to find JonMcL & Co. chilling in a booth at the bar. We asked for another picture – this time with the whole band. It was magnificent. //::insert sounds of angels here::// Although I tried to be as articulate and intelligent-sounding as possible, I imagine that I looked as excited as a child at Disney for the first time.

Blian (Bob) and I have met another “potential a cappella arrangement” group before.  When The Hush Sound came to the RPI Field house with Motion City Soundtrack (who we also met!) and Panic at the Disco, we were eager to wait in line and get their John Hancock / snap a pic with them. We still have the autographed napkins (that I found in my purse at the last minute as a makeshift signature pad). Blian actually arranged “Wine Red” by The Hush Sound and it made it onto Voices Only 2010!! Blian’s kind of a big deal…

I work too much. This was a fantastic way to get my workaholic butt out doing something fun with my best friend. I’m really excited to see JonMcL and SK6ers again. If they’re not on tour together again, I have no problem buying tickets to separate shows. 🙂

Highlights from our evening:

  • Quoting Dom Mazetti like we were being paid for it.
  • The awkward Mom dancing in front of us.
  • Blian looks great in plaid.
  • “His name is Bill Williams?!?” “No, Dylan Williams.” “Oh good. I was gonna say that’s a stupid name.”
  • “He’s got a harmonica!!”
  • “There’s a tuba.”
  • “KEYTAR!”
  • 5 guys and 9 instruments in one song – pretty awesome!
  • Learning the “Big Easy” dance.
  • Lovely NYC scenery on our walk to and from the PATH.
  • “I think we’re in a bad part of NYC when you can’t see a Starbucks…”
  • “How does one earn the nickname Goose?”

What’s your most memorable concert that you’ve ever been to? Tell me in the comments! 🙂

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We Have the Prettiest Window in New York State

25 Nov

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Happy Thanksgiving from Midge and Puppet!

24 Nov

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Things You Can Find at Villanova… If You Look Hard Enough

21 Nov

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Philly Night Life

20 Nov

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My Future in Someone Else’s Hands…

19 Nov

College admissions. Gag me.

I thought it was a big arduous task when I applied to undergrad, and life-changing when I applied to a Masters program that I thought would shape the rest of my career. You’d think that would be enough torture for me. Noooope. My middle name shouldn’t be Marie – it should be GluttonForPunishment (which, actually, is not very melodic to the ear…).

But why have I spent the last 2 months attempting to, yet again, craft the perfect admissions package? Because I want to be a doctor. Not the “blood and guts” kind that tells you that you have strep throat or high cholesterol. The kind that teaches college students and does research. No, not in your stereotypical sterile lab. Research about emerging trends in society and how they affect us as people and, more specifically, as members of the workforce. How can individuals come together as a team in an increasingly segmented workforce that is becoming more and more dependent upon the Internet? Do they want to?

Coming from a tech school (yeah RPI!), my life has been saturated by  the never-ending feeling of novelty from computers and the Internet. They make our lives easier. Everyone works in teams. I think the only class I took that didn’t require a team project or at least some level of group interaction was  Psychopharmacology – and that was because it was all about drugs. I couldn’t function the way I do now without the Internet and knowing how to interact with people on a work team, and I just assumed everyone felt that way. Going to a school now that is less technologically and team focused, I feel that I miss those elements that molded me at such a malleable age. The curiosity that was instilled in me at RPI makes me question: why do none of the Villanovans I’ve met know what [insert technological advancement here] is? Why are group projects such a hassle?

Being a self-proclaimed “nerd” I, of course, want to dedicate the rest of my life to finding these answers (and answers to new questions along the way!). But, back to the admissions part: I know what I want to do and I know I have the will, dedication, and “chutzpah” to really succeed in being an I/O Psychologist. However, I have to wait painstaking months for someone to tell me whether or not I’m “good enough.”  While I agree with the fact that there needs to be a process to select top performers who are going to thrive in the selected program, I’m nervous. I can’t help but be nervous. I’m much better in person than I am on paper and I can only hope that they see that. But, there’s nothing else I can do but finish getting in all of my applications – and wait. At that point they’ll make a decision, but for now my future is in someone else’s hands. Someone else gets to decide my dream for me.

‘Tis the Season for Deliciousness

17 Nov

I tried Bigelow Tea’s “Eggnogg’n” because I’m getting in the Christmas spirit!

Mixed emotions.

The smell is incredible: it really does smell like eggnog! Taste is a different story. The first time I had it black and strong. Not impressed with the mouthfeel. I think because tea doesn’t have the consistency of eggnog, my mouth felt betrayed. When I put some milk in, it was a bit more realistic that I was drinking a relative of the eggnog family.

Overall, it’s great to sip if you’re looking for something warm and seasonal. Maybe I should invite Captain Morgan or Maker’s Mark over for another tasting.

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Adventures in Domestication

16 Nov

So I took a cookie decorating class with my friend, Becca, and let me tell you – it was kick-ass!

I’ve always loved baking, but never really spent time making my creations look nice. I just shove them into my mouth as fast as humanly possible. Hopefully, I’ll be able to take a cupcake decorating class in the Spring to assuage my culinary whims and become a bigger target for “women belong in the kitchen” jokes.  Whatever – I make a mean sugar cookie.

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Well hello there, Baltimore.

13 Nov

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How Greek Life Changed My Life. (No, Not the Country…)

12 Nov

I’m in Baltimore this weekend for the Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference for Alpha Phi and I’m having difficulty describing the incredible feeling I have for this sisterhood. As a collegian, I had a typical undergrad sorority experience: friends, fun, philanthropy, etc. As a new advisor of a chapter that is so different from mine: this is indescribable.

On one hand, I want so badly to connect with the collegians and have fun with them. I want to be accepted, one of them. On the other, it’s time for me to put on my “big girl pants” and join society as an adult and role model for these women.
I always thought that I would “grow up” by experiencing a hardship. While I’ve had my fair share of hardships, the most recent experiences I’ve had watching these women make mistakes and then triumph has been incredibly touching. It’s like watching my decisions as an undergrad from afar. I love sitting down with them and talking about grad school, life plans, and even what color the recruitment shirts should be next semester. Now that I think about it, I really appreciate the people who took the time to do that for me.

Being an advisor has opened my eyes to the benefits of mentoring and volunteering. Not only do they need my opinions and, sometimes, guidance, but I need them. Watching them has helped me come closer in deciding what kind of woman I want to become. I still haven’t grown up yet. Older, yes, but up? I can hope, right?

I’ve found that I don’t really mind what they think about me as much as when I arrived to the chapter. It’s not about me ; it’s about them and what I can do for them. I’ve found that my benefits will come regardless of whether I’m looking for something in return or not. Fun fact: the best benefits come when you’re not looking.

Moral of the story: if you’re Greek or part of another organization where you are able to volunteer your time to the growth and development of others going through similar experiences to ones you may have had, I can’t express enough how much they need you and, secretly, how much you need them, too.