It’s holiday time, y’all! Whether you celebrate Chrimbus, Festivus (Google it for a fun Easter egg), Ludachristmas, Eggmas or any other equally spiritual special occasion, now is that magical time of year where it’s acceptable to get drunk in front of your boss and/or Grandma, go on a shopping spree at 4 a.m. and eat your weight in HoneyBaked Ham. OK, some of us do these things year-round, but now we can’t be judged for it!
For some reason, it’s perfectly normal this time of year to go door-to-door singing unsolicited tunes to strangers. It’s also a good excuse to talk to your best friend’s wife, with whom you’re secretly in love.
Music is a major factor in this wonderfully insane season, so I’ve collected a sampling of this year’s best holiday tunes for all the good little CityBeat readers. Gather ‘round!
Rapper DMX spit some classic rhymes for New York radio channel 105.1 FM:
The Roots produce pure magic week to week on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and all their musical projects. Earlier this year, Fallon and the crew teamed up with musical guest Carly Rae Jepsen backstage to perform her The Song That Shall Not Be Named using children’s/beginner instruments. Their follow-up? Mariah Carey’s infectious holiday anthem, “All I Want For Christmas Is You.”
And who could forget the holiday collaboration we’ve all been waiting for — the reunion of Sandy and Danny — This Christmas from Olivia Newton-John Travolta (easiest celeb couple name ever). Apparently everything that’s ever existed is getting rebooted and, at this point, I think even my one-eyed cat has recorded a Christmas album, so it’s no real shocker that the Grease duo would team up again for a holiday record. But between Travolta’s Chia Pet hair, ON-J’s scary Juvederm face and the following low-budge music video, This Christmas is making my eyeballs beg for the impending apocalypse.
Speaking of hot
messes, while it’s always fun to get drunk on your employer’s dime, it is
important to keep yourself in check at your work’s holiday party. No canoodling
with co-workers, challenging your boss to a drink-off or dancing Gangnam style. Thought Catalog has some hepful dos and don’ts here.
Everything is Terrible (via Videogum) got its hands on a clip from a 1988 Christmas television special starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, his Twins buddy Danny Devito, Mike Tyson, Country singer Randy Travis, old lady and champion bowler Marie Gretter and a bunch of probably terrified children.
While Arnold’s Austrian Antichristmas tradition may sound scary, it’s not nearly as freaky as having Mike Tyson scream a Christmas carol into the face of an innocent child. Also, I’m pretty sure that when Ah-nahld manhandled the little girl who joked that he needed singing lessons, he may have brokes that little girls’ ribs. This looks more like a Tim and Eric sketch than a primetime family program, but I guarantee if you show this to your kids, they will never misbehave again.
It's not Christmas in America until the Kardashian-Jenner family bestows its annual holiday card upon our unworthy eyes. Peep that Photoshopped piece here and find equally funny, scary and confusing family photos in this list of "34 of the most jovially insane family holiday cards ever sent."
If you weren't one of the 12 readers during our Academy Awards live chat, you really missed out on some intriguing conversation and delicious snacks. Thankfully, however, you can still read the chat in its entirety here. It might not be as funny as reading it live, or it might be funnier. Go find out.
In quirkier event news, did you know there's a monthly meet-up of the Skeptical Society of Cincinnati where the group introduces a professional scientist to the public? Cincy Science Cafe is a casual gathering (usually at a bar) where the community can learn about interesting discoveries being made by area scientists. Tonight the crew meets at Glendale's Cock & Bull at 6 p.m. Go here for details.
Wednesdays are extra sexy at Northside Tavern — Sexy Time Live Band Karaoke takes over the back room this night each week. For those unfamiliar, STLBK is just how it sounds — the ultimate karaoke experience. You provide the vocals (and preferably hot dance moves) while a live band accompanies you. Be a Rock Star for, like, four minutes! Check out the group on Facebook. SexyTime for details and the song list. STLBK kicks off at 9 p.m.
At the risk of inducing widespread PTSD flashbacks, I invite everyone to recall 2011’s Internet Public Enemy No. 1, Rebecca Black. The teen, who is probably a decent human undeserving of worldwide hatred, assaulted eardrums on a massive scale with her music video gone viral, “Friday.” The worst realization to come out of Friday-gate wasn’t the sorry state of the music industry or even the online bullying Black faced, but the fact that, apparently, rich people will throw a few thousand dollars at a greedy producer to create a shitty song and music video for their marginally talented child.
Record producer and songwriter Patrice Wilson was one of the driving forces behind “Friday” and if you wanted to give his work another chance, you’re in luck. He worked with Nicole Westbrook to record a song not about one day of the week (that’s so 2011), but one day of the year. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s Thanksgiving.
Kraft Mac-n-Cheese – AY! Stove Top stuffing – AY! We one-percenters should have better food than this.
While we’re on the
topic of social phenomena ripe for mockery, it’s fitting to recognize Food
Network’s Guy Fieri (Real Name: Guy Ferry. Yeah, douchebag status: confirmed)
who recently opened a new restaurant in New York City. It seems most people
either love or hate Guy. He co-owns five California restaurants and hosts the
popular Diners, Drive-ins and Dives,
on which he travels the country highlighting off-the-beaten-path chow-down
spots — so, clearly he’s got some fans out there. Others are a bit turned off
by his labored “Rock-N-Roll” façade, his annoying catchphrases
and his penchant for bowling shirts.
I can’t trust a man who purposefully styles his hair like a goofy visor hat from Cappel’s, and apparently New York Times’ Pete Wells isn’t a fan either. In his Nov. 13 take-down piece on the new Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar in Times Square, Wells completely ripped the joint apart limb from tribal tattooed limb. While any attempt to seriously review what sounds like a black hole for overweight tourists would probably prove futile, I feel Wells could have been a bit more creative in his blasting of Fieri. Guy’s an easy target, so why go with the cliched “Dear Guy,” letter format, punctuated by a series of overly sarcastic questions? At this point I’m waiting for a cynical review of Wells’ review (please tweet any findings to @jackern), but I have to hand it to the reviewer for this service assessment that made me choke on my morning coffee: “The well-meaning staff seems to realize that this is not a real restaurant.” Find the full story here.
Fans got a first look at Brad Pitt zombie action flick World War Z last week. The film, based on Max Brooks’ 2006 novel of the same name, may stray farther from the text than fans have hoped, judging by the trailer. (Though it’s important to note how deceiving these first looks can be). The book reflects on a worldwide war on zombies after the fact, using interviews with survivors to paint the terrifying picture, whereas the film appears to be a straight-up zombie movie. However it turns out, zombie purists beware: These may be the quickest and most agile undead yet.
After last week’s election, gay marriage is now legal nine states. It’s a great feat for equality, but we’ve got a long way to go. In fact, gays across America have given straight, conservative men an ultimatum: Vote to legalize same-sex marriage, or they will marry the crap out of your girlfriends.
Portlandia, the hilarious sketch comedy spoofing counter-culture trends, returns to IFC Jan. 4. The show stars SNL’s Fred Armisen and Sleater-Kinney/Wild Flag guitarist-singer Carrie Brownstein — quite possibly my favorite non-romantic duo — in a series of timely skits about the hipster sect of popular culture. All the good little boys and girls of Oregon and beyond can get an early sampling of the two with the “Winter in Portlandia” holiday special on Dec. 14. Fans will see Peter and Nance go low-carb to stave off winter blubber and meet Candace’s son as he swings by Women and Women First during his holiday visit.
Here’s the first skit from the upcoming third season:
Tonight marks O'Bryonville's first Third Thursday Benefit Wine Walk of the year. Support the neighborhood's independent businesses like Hemptations, Phyllis Weston Gallery, Ten Thousand Villages, The Bonbonerie, indigenous and many more as you hop from spot to spot, enjoying complimentary wine and bites at each participating venue. This month's walk benefits Pets in Need (a UCAN affiliate) and Cincinnati Pet Food Pantry. The event runs from 5-8 p.m. tonight.
Enjoy a romantic night in Paris...without needing a passport. Art Design Consultants presents en evening with their Design Star, Grace Jones of Dwellings on Madison. Jones will transform the ADC loft space (310 Culvert St., Downtown) into a French apartment. Stop by at 6 for cocktails and stick around for the 7 p.m. unveiling of Jones' designs. Holly Golightly attire is encouraged! RSVP here.
Comedian Jim Norton kicks off his three-night gig at Funny Bone on the Levee tonight. Specializing in dark comedy and self-deprecation, the comic has also acted in television and film and has written two humorous nonfiction books. Many will recognize Norton from the Opie & Anthony radio show, Louie, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and several small, odd film roles (two words: Furry Vengeance). Norton goes on tonight at 8 p.m. Tickets are $22.
Cincinnati Zoo's Tunes and Blooms series continues tonight with Shiny and the Spoon and The Tillers. The free concert features local favorite musicians performing in the beautiful setting of the zoo's gardens. The concert runs 6-8:30 p.m.; admission to the zoo is free after 5 p.m. (parking is $8). Tunes and Blooms continues every Thursday this month.
Jungle Jim's hosts a mystery mix cigar tasting tonight from 5-8 p.m. The tasting will be held at the Oscar Event Center's Monorail Terrace. Guests can enjoy three different cigars with $15 admission. There will be a cash bar, raffle and plenty of cigars and accessories for sale. Each Thursday, Jungle Jim's presents a different variety of cigars to try. No word yet on whether "mystery mix" is an early 4-20 reference.