Close Your Eyes and Cover Your Ears

Kei$ha – “We R Who We Are”

As a general impression, Kei$ha reminds me of a mistake some guy makes when he first moves to Los Angeles, fresh off the boat from desolate nowhere, drinking tequila and absinthe in a bar somewhere in Silverlake until he has lost all of his new friends and 98% of his vision.  She’s the type of thing you wake up next to, the light of day pouring on her glitter and nose ring, and you throw yourself out of the nearest window, caring little about where the ground is in relation to your jumping point.

In this video, Kei$ha is now the mayor of post-apocalypse Los Angeles, where the only thing that has managed to survive the fallout is terrible music, bad lyrics, and a whole lot of sparkly shit.

To keep on living, I’ve convinced myself that Kei$ha is actually a self-parody genius and the joke’s on us.  Right?  Because I just subjected myself to the line “And no you don’t want to mess with us/ Got Jesus on my neck-uh-lez-uz-ez.”  That can’t be real.  Like, come on.

The Downtown Fiction – “I Just Wanna Run”

First impression: Rock & Roll Jonas Brothers waiting for their collective balls to drop.

Second Impression: Strangely associating it with a scene in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, the part where he’s dancing on a float somewhere in Chicago.  It might be the hips swaying that goes on in both…I’m not quite sure.  I know it is a shame to drag such a classic film into this, but I can’t help the way my brain works just like these kids can’t help but make music I’ve been hearing for the last nine years.

Third Impression: Did this director take Literal Lyrical Class 101?  The running sequences that happen during the chorus line make me feel like interval training down Manhattan Avenue.  I do give them some credit for throwing some ninjas into this thing.  Ninjas are awesome.

Big Time Rush – “Big Night”

It’s Going to be a Big Night (Singing in Shopping Malls)

Okay.  I thought this whole grown-men-dancing-in-unison thing had fallen by the wayside over five years ago.  I’m having flashbacks to 98 Degrees and men in white linen pants that are giving me hives.  My first and only thought, aside from the brief idea of plunging knives into my eyeballs, is that they should maybe be spending less money on private planes and more on legitimate videos and a choreographer.

The Ready Set – “More Than Alive”

COME ON WITH THESE HAIRCUTS.  Seriously!!!  I thought Never Shout Never was the only poor fucker this happened to.  It’s like the I’m-a-more-serious-artists-than-Justin-Bieber cut.  The I’m-a-little-bit-funky-I’m-a-little-bit-rock-and-roll look.  This is an epidemic we just take seriously or there are going to be a whole lot of American high school students regretting their yearbook photos in five years.

Flo Rida – “What Dat Girl”

Aside from sounding nearly the same as Kei$ha’s song, I have no complaints from this couch; these guys know how to throw a fucking party.  Good light?!  Day-Glo paint?!  Happy New Year’s Eve.  I’m in.

PS: She ain’t no actress/ the movie’s on my mattress



Oh, children, my darlings

[I don’t recommend watching all of this video.  The first five seconds will give you the general gist.]

A few months ago, back when the weather was warm and I still lived walking distance from a gym that didn’t smell like sweaty Polish people, I watched (and subsequently wrote about) a band (?) by the name of Never Shout Never, led by a young man who has now grown into a cross between Justin Bieber and Carrot Top over the course of the summer.  (PS – WTF?!)

Here is the link to that piece.

By some peculiar act of pop culture god, my blog is one of the first things that pops up when you Google his name and, thusly, teenagers by the hundreds are directed towards this site…which is great because that is, like, totally my target market, right?  RIGHT?!

Well, it’s obvious that these kids just don’t understand my humor or friendly dislike of fucking tragically awful music that reminds me of Dashboard Confessional and the days when I worked as an intern nursing my papercuts and stuffing envelopes with press kits for Vagrant Records.  Oh, the emo horrors!

Since said post, I have received some pretty awesome not-fan-mail as a result, filled of typos and email names including creative spellings of “hearts” and “stars” and two-digit numbers starting with 9, which one can only assume means they were born in the nineties.  If this means I’m old, so fucking be it.  Anything to not be in high school right now and think this is good music.

Whoa, man.  KKK?  But are you saying if I did attend a KKK rally, it’d still be okay to hate on Never Shout Never?  I’m confused.

I remember when I was a headstrong, hormone-ravaged teenager.  I thought I knew everything, was mad fucking cool, could dress myself well (ah hahahahahahaha), and my mom definitely in no way knew what was best for me.  311 rocked my world.  I went to KROQ concerts.  Enimem held a special place in my heart.  I kept a picture of me, Dr. Dre, and my friend Allie on my bedside table.  Bloody hell, I even had a Limp Bizkit poster in my bedroom.  And…AND…to top it off…I’m going to hate to admit this…I even used a Limp Bizkit lyrical stanza (?) as my high school senior year quote.  Yeah, go on.  Laugh.  Laugh reaaaallll hard.  That’s it.  Giggle a little bit on the come down.

So I guess what I’m trying to say here, while outing myself as someone who used to be really awesome I mean lame, is just mellow your yellow kids.  Accept the fact that while you think Never Shout Never is like, the best band in the universe, and its lead singer is sooooo dreamy, just know that one day you will look back at this time and laugh at yourself for being so foolhardy.  You’ll laugh and laugh and if you’re lucky, maybe you’ll get to write a blog about just how bad your taste really was.  Cheers, you little fuckers!

With love,


Oh, and these too are prettttyyyy awesome.


My 2011 Fuck-It List Part II

Here’s what a(nother) pot of coffee at 6 p.m. gets all of you: Part II.

7.  Rock Hard Abs

These are for super models that make more money over the course of two underwear-clad shoots in the Bahamas than most Americans do in a whole calendar year.  Embrace your beer guts, your muffin tops, those squishy places your asshole friend loves to push with his/her forefinger (This person would be on your Fuck-It list for the year, though it would more accurately be a “Fuck-You” list).

8.  Your Real Age

It occurred to me the other day that if I pretend I am twenty-three-years old this year, I have effectively erased all of those wasted bullshit years I spent drinking cans of Monster, dancing in someone else’s cigarette smoke until whatever wee hour of the morning, and coming home to read badly written love letters from boys on Myspace.  Okay, that last part never actually happened.  But what did happen between the age of twenty-one and twenty-three was a whole lot of fucking nothing and you know what?  I’m taking those years back.  Hello, my name is Jenny Bahn and I was born in 1988.

9.  Opening Ceremony

Who the hell buys this shit?  I’m the first one to appreciate high-fashion concept clothing but I have yet to figure out who the hell can afford it.  Oh, maybe it’s the people that have “My Paycheck” on their Fuck-It lists.

10.  Neurotic Dietary Conditions

I think I probably spent $679 dollars on gluten-free crackers from Whole Foods this year and another $341 on soy cheese.  Do I feel healthier?  Not really.  Do I wish I had that money back?  A little bit.  My new favorite thing in the universe is Laughing Cow cheese spread over those wheat crackers with some weird name I can’t remember.  Sprinkle a few dried pomegranate seeds on top of that and voila!  You’ve got your own pseudo Starbuck’s Cranberry Bliss Bar…you know, minus all the cream cheese and sugar and delicious crumbly crust.  Alright, fine.  I’m still going to be neurotic in 2011, but I’m going to make sure it costs me a whole lot less.

11.  SoHo

I could go the rest of my life without walking down Broadway, battling tourists en route to consumer hell for sidewalk space.  Same goes for inhaling the toxic perfume they pump out of the Hollister store.  I don’t need any more cheap shoes.  I don’t want to be subjected to your terrible food.  I just don’t.  Prince Street Station, I’m sorry, you are officially dead to me.  Nuts 4 Nuts, I’m going to miss your delicious roasty smell, but the rest of you…Fuck It.

12.  Eighteen-dollar Drinks

Dear Establishments, If you wish to keep your young and hip clients nice and happy you should really stop raping them on beverages; they’re going to stop coming, preferring to hole up in their tiny Williamsburg and East Village apartments drinking bathtub gin.  The economy is still recovering for fuck’s sake.  Le Bain, I’m talking to you.  Provocateur, you suck so bad you don’t even count.  Bunker, you’re not that great.  Like, seriously.


My 2011 Fuck-It List Part I

It’s that time of year again – time to reflect on all of the awesome things we’ve achieved and all of the things we have managed to awesomely not achieve over the course of the last 365 days.  It was an epic year: I moved twice, quit going to the gym, gave up gluten, realized that was stupid and started eating gluten again, made some cash, wrote some blogs, and here I am, sitting at some flat writing surface located in one of the many corners of my humble abode, contemplating how I will spend the next year.  I’m done with goals.  I’m just going to be open and let things happen.  Do what I want to do.  Feel flows, at the Beach Boys once said.  But the culmination of a year is never complete without a good “Fuck It List” – though, admittedly, this one is my first.  I suggest you all come up with your own.  If you want, send it to me.  Whatever.  Fuck it.

1.  Bucket Lists

Fuck your bucket list.  Bucket lists are for people who think about dying, and, well, who the hell wants to think about dying all day long.  That and I’m immortal; I don’t need a bucket list.

2.  Fear

Including, but not limited to: failure, flying, dying, clowns, dogs, slipping in the shower, food poisoning, grisly car crashes, the apocalypse, Kim Jong-Il, getting in trouble, beef tartar (though I’m still not going to eating it ever again), my New York City living expenses, what the insane amounts of coffee I consume on a daily basis is doing to my heart, what the insane amounts of alcohol my friends consume on a daily basis is doing to their livers, taxi drivers, plant-based estrogens, small movie theaters, bedbugs, and the thought I might ever have to move back to Los Angeles.

3.  Justifying my love of Justin Bieber

Y’all can keep on sippin’ that haterade.

4.  Girlfriends of Ex-Boyfriends

Just sayin’.

5.  Transparency

I would like to say that this means I am going to get rid of my blog(s), Facebook account, Twitter account, and, yes, the Myspace account that is still buried deep in some cobwebbed corner of the virtual universe but I doubt that is going to happen anytime soon.  The problem is I like words, and the more words stumble out of my fingertips the better I feel.  So, in that way, in 2011 I will continue to be transparent, and I apologize.

In my real life I will attempt to be more mysterious, though now the cat’s out of the bag on that one.  Ah, well, fuck non-transparency.  The world is but a stage.  Look at me!  I SAID FUCKING LOOK AT ME!!!

5.  The News

CNN, MSNBC, FOX News and whatever other depressing bullshit is out there turning this country into one boringly polarized nation can suck my you-know-what.  I’m sticking with The Daily Show from here on out

6.  Long distance Relationships

Before getting into one I consulted a friend who was a few months deep into his very own LDR.  “Make sure it’s worth it,” was the general gist, followed by something like, “It’s really fucking difficult.”  After my own experience with the beast, I have two words for all of you contemplating the same: Fuck it.


Make it Brief

The streets were covered in snow that blinded her when the sun shifted course.  Lena would have preferred that the clouds have remained after the blizzard; she hated a noncommittal sky.

She passed an apartment she used to live in that was on a hidden street and she hadn’t remembered the number or the floor or the flower tiles in the lobby.  Nothing further had happened there beyond going to sleep on a bed with no sheets, listening to people smoke in the ambiguous backyard area of an independent movie theater, and hearing her roommate sing off-key to Seal songs from the late 90s while getting ready for work.

She felt as though she had been asleep for the last three years.  That things had happened to her and she had met people and it had all meant nothing.  It was the end of the year and all she had were the shells of things.


Snow Days

The snow had brought with it a chaotic lawlessness that bred small camaraderies: silent smiles shared between strangers that said, “This is beautiful,” and the smirks that read, “This fucking sucks.”  The ungroomed roads had become snow parks for the daring, deep blue footprints heading into the middle of the streets that should have been filled with moving cars.  Pedestrians walked where they could; any snowless patch of concrete was fair game.  They crossed at intersections like drugged chickens, heading in all directions according to the depth of the slush and the quality of their shoes.

What was beautiful yesterday was quickly turning into a bile-colored slush, the pristine white becoming too familiarized with the reality of New York.  The snow held onto things we wanted and things we didn’t want: trapped bicycles, bags of garbage, dog piss.

Trains ran infrequently and when they came they were filled to the brim with people wearing ugly accessories, hats and other things.  Little men traveled with shovels, waiting to be hired.  We traveled under the cold madness above.

It was the closest thing an American could ever imagine coming to a military state.  Cars left abandoned in peculiar places, children waging war with snowballs, government vehicles pushing snow down the street after midnight.  We were a spoiled lot.


HLS: Nameless Drowning

She once had a boy who loved her so much it terrified her.  So much, in fact, he was not a boy at all but just a mirror of all her good and none of her bad.  A pool of nothing that he wanted desperately for her to fall into.  Love me.  Love me.  Love me. But she didn’t know what to love because he had given up so much of himself in loving her.  No one was worth that, she thought.  No matter how beautiful or smart or funny they thought them to be.  These adjectives were just projections of what the other person wanted, exacerbated lies that made a person believe in soul mates and true love.

Feeling him fall in love with her was like watching someone drown: gasping for air and only taking in salt water.  Watching him fall out of love with her was much the same, only without the sweeping grace had accompanied the initial ascent of delusion.  At first she felt badly for her inability to love him as much, but at the end of it – after watching him suffer with questions about forever and always and things she had no way of answering or knowing – she wanted to push him underwater, keeping him there until he was dead dead dead.  She wanted nothing of this to survive.

The night she killed it for good, she was mean, awful and mean because she had to be.  He egged her on with questions that became more prodding, more roundabout; increasingly begging for a maliciousness she never desired to be capable of.  Arguing with him was an art of semantics and she knew it was because he wanted so desperately to keep her.  His words twisted around like the roots of a banyan tree, trying to trap her, keep her, eat her alive.  He said things she wasn’t sure he actually felt; he was living his life according to a script he had written in his head, a romantic drama starring Javier Bardem and an actress no one had ever heard of.  He was making her hate him and this would make everything easier.  And finally, after hours of wanting to punch walls or run away or take a shower or bite him savagely, she  screamed, “I hate you!  I hate you!  Is that what you want?  This is what you want?”  The words burned her throat and made her hands shake.  It wasn’t what he wanted but the hate would make it easier for him, too.

He was fighting for a train that had already left the station, one that he had missed by an entire day.  He stood on the platform, holding a golden ticket he had created with his mind, trying to call back what had never been there.