Monday, November 17, 2014

Tuna, Trees, and Bill Maher




This Saturday we had a family outing — we went to our new favorite Japanese restaurant, Wasabi, and to see Bill Maher. 

The food was delicious. Wasabi has the best tempura of any Japanese restaurant I have ever tried, and I’ve tried a lot of them in various places. Still, the best thing on the menu has to be the tuna tataki. It was so amazing. They’ve decorated a little early, but the Christmas tree made for such a pretty, bokeh-inspired shot that I can’t complain.


Bill Maher is a love-him-or-hate-him figure, I realize, so you may or may not want to backspace away from the blog right now. I don’t agree with everything he says — who agrees with everything anyone says? — but when I agree, I agree

He was especially hilarious this Saturday, and I think we pleasantly surprised him, too. He said several times “I will be back,” and considering how shocked I was to learn he was coming to Jackson in the first place, I think he actually means it. Alas, photography and filming weren't allowed, so I have no pictures from the show. Oh, well.

All in all, it was a fantastic night. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Mississippi Burning


Everyone likes to talk about how backwards the state of Mississippi is — and I freely admit I’ve made plenty jokes, too — so it’s nice to be able to brag when I’m impressed. 

Today the Mississippi ag museum — that’s the Agriculture and Forestry Museum to non-residents — lost at least three of its buildings in a fire of unknown origin. Instead of running away from the fire, employees ran toward the buildings to rescue the pigs, horses, and sheep housed there. 

Firemen arrived on the scene to save even more. As of right now, there have been no reported animal deaths. 

Well done, guys!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Splenda In the Grass

I’m a die-hard tea and coffee drinker. I love the stuff. I literally wait for the return of Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte the way religious fanatics await the second coming. Sadly, they have yet to make a sugar-free PSL, but I will happily gulp down a venti as a meal and write it off as an indulgence. 

We all know sugar isn’t the healthiest thing for us if for no other reason than the calories, but recently a study published in Nature claims that no-calorie sweeteners are as bad as sugar. They supposedly cause glucose intolerance, which causes the inability for the sugar taken from the blood stream to properly interact with cells. (Glucose intolerance is also a precursor to Type 2 Diabetes).

Say what now? Basically, the sweeteners were altering the bacteria found in our guts, which affects the metabolism and the ability to process insulin. What does this mean? All of the wacky stuff happening with the bacteria have reportedly made people more intolerant to sugar... so when we eat anything containing sugar, our bodies have trouble digesting it, which could one day lead to Diabeetus.

Huh?!

Not so fast! Here’s the deal. It was one study, and they had an extremely small test group. Additionally, the amount of sweeteners ingested by far exceed normal daily allowances. You would have to drink at least several hundred sodas per day to ingest the same amount of artificial sweetener. 

So the gist of it is the same thing everyone has been saying for years: everything is fine in moderation. 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Go Clear


I’ve been sick lately, so, as usual, my skin has been freaking out like nobody’s business. I still have a massive spot right above my cupid’s bow, and wow, that’s a lousy place to have a zit. Smiling, talking, drinking… all ouchy right now! 

I recently finished up another bottle of my Earth Science cleanser, and since I was already broken out, I figured it would be safe to test out the Go Clear Clarifying Cleanser AM/PM. What’s the worst that could happen, right? (Well, I could have broken out worse or had an allergic reaction, but…)

This stuff is genius! It’s improved my skin in a matter of days without stripping my skin and leaving it overly dry. It has tiny little beads, so it also exfoliates, but there aren’t many of them, and they’re very smooth, so they won’t scratch the skin.

The cleanser was given to me by my aunt, so I had to look up the price. It was apparently once stocked by Sephora, but now I can only find it on Amazon. It’s alcohol, oil, lanolin, and propylene glycol free. It also contains no artificial dyes or fragrances. At $26.99, it’s in the same price range as most Origins cleansers, and I’d say it has a comparable performance. 


I’d definitely recommend giving it a try if you have problematic but sensitive skin.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Restaurant Review: Wasabi


One of my biggest complaints about Jackson, MS has always been the lack of decent Japanese food in the area. Nagoya tried to kill me with partially-raw hibachi shrimp, Hokkaido used to be brilliant, but now the quality has tanked, and Kyoto is absolutely flavorless. 

We’ve heard good things about Wasabi, but until last night, we’d never gotten around to trying it. Now that we have… there is good Japanese food in Jackson!

They literally have the best calamari I have ever eaten. It wasn’t at all greasy, and it was cooked to perfection. I gave their Pad Thai a go, and I won’t be doing it again, but if you like your Pad Thai on the sweeter side, you’ll love it. 

The decor is beautiful, too. The downside is the construction going on downtown. It makes getting there — and finding a parking place — a bit tricky, but it’s definitely worth it. 


Monday, November 10, 2014

Color Analysis: Hit Or Miss?


Thanks to the lovely ladies at Invent Your Image, a website that offers style consultation packages and color analysis, I was typed as a Dark Autumn. 

What does that mean? Apparently, that any of the colors shown on my swatch are my most flattering. I've never really gotten the hang of the whole "seasons" thing, to be honest, so I was happy to have an outsiders objective opinion. Some of my favorite colors are on there, but there is also an awful lot of pink, and I tend to look strange in pink.

But it’s not an exact science, and if you’re one of those people who, like me, feel most comfortable wearing all black, all the time, it’s worth checking out! 

Friday, November 7, 2014

Bombay Bicycle Club: So Long, See You Tomorrow (Album Review)


I discovered Bombay Bicycle Club thanks to Kate, and I'm so glad I took her advice. They didn't sound like my usual genre at first. "Bollywood-infused indie rock electronica? What? Guys, seriously, pick a genre!" But I gave the album a listen, and after the initial "WTF is this?" wore off, I really, really loved it. 

Singer-songwriter Jack Steadman (who also produced the album) has a very sweet voice. By that, I don't mean saccharine. I mean that he sounds kind. I don't know anything about the guy personally, but I like to imagine it's true. 

I first heard So Long, See You Tomorrow when my mother was suffering from a then-undiagnosed illness and going in and out of the hospital, and I was still mourning the death of my sweet doggie. In short, this album came into my life when all I wanted to do was curl into a little ball and never leave the house again. 

I'm not saying that a London-based indie-electronica band is a good substitute for an antidepressant. I am saying that their music made things seem less bleak. Music has always had a tremendous impact on my life. One of my earliest memories is of sitting in bed, wearing a lilac sweatsuit, watching the music video of Paul McCartney's Pipes Of Peace. (Totally dating myself there, but whatever...) 

My favorite tracks are Luna, Come To, and Feel, but I think the album sounds best when it's played all the way through. Give them a chance, especially if you feel down in the dumps!