1. Nicki Minaj: To say that I’m a little bit obsessed with Nicki Minaj is probably an understatement. For the past month or so, I haven’t been able to get enough of her. Her album is on near-constant repeat for me at the gym and in the car. It’s not just her wicked verse on Kanye West’s “Monster” (although she absolutely kills it) that makes me love her, though. It’s her in general, it’s the fact that her guest appearances on virtually every song by another artist are the most interesting parts of the song (TreySongz “Bottoms Up” is a terrible song with the exception of Minaj’s weird, wild rhymes about getting drunk and being a lady; Drake’s “Up All Night” is a great song made even better by Minaj’s verse about how much money she has, etc.), and it’s the fact that she’s unbelievably hot and yet has a totally weird sense of humor. Does she play into the “sex sells” world of celebrity? Absolutely. Are there things worth examining in her “Barbie” image? Of course. But the fact remains that Minaj is huge right now, and she’s also hugely entertaining.
2. The Melismatics “Soul Sucker” video: The Melismatics are a Twin Cities-based band who seem to be on the brink of making it big. Three dudes, one girl, and guitar-heavy rock make up the majority of their songs. Although Ryan Smith and Pony co-lead on vocals, there’s something about Pony’s vibrant, playful tone that brings the band to another level. The group is fun, fresh, and puts on a hell of a live show. This video is not their most recent, but it’s one of my favorite songs, and I can’t seem to stop watching it.
3. Other Words for Love by Lorraine Zago Rosenthal: Sixteen year old Ari is trying to come of age in Brooklyn in the 1980s, and her life is pretty complicated. Her parents have high expectations for her future. This pressure is made worse by the fact that they view her older sister as a monumental screw-up who got pregnant in high school and never reached her potential. Ari struggles with an old best friend who can’t stand the thought of her having a new best friend, a new prestigious prep school, a wicked crush on her sister’s husband, and boys who make her a little crazy.
I started reading this book on the treadmill and can’t put it down. I can’t shake the feeling that this book will end up being one of my favorites of the year. Something about Rosenthal’s story is so compelling that I can’t stop thinking about it, even long after I leave the gym.
4. Flavorwire.com and ThoughtCatalog.com
These two websites offer a ton of diversions for me when I’m at work and at home. Flavorwire is the newer of the two websites to me, and I visit it at least once a day to peruse their offerings. ThoughtCatalog offers a great deal of thoughtful, funny essays and articles about love & sex, pop culture, and other current events. Both sites are completely fun and full of smart commentary about the world. I harbor a secret desire to write for ThoughtCatalog, but I have my doubts about that wish fulfillment.
5. The Concept of Me Getting a Tattoo
This one is especially silly, because I have never in my 25 years of existence thought about getting a tattoo until recently. But it’s happened, and now I can’t get over it. There are a ton of interesting photos to be had on the internet that feature tattoos that I actually find beautiful, and while I’m not ready to share my tattoo idea, here are a few pictures that I find particularly pretty.