Friday, January 31, 2014

Pittsburgh's best friend



Last evening, a member of the City of Pittsburgh's K-9 unit, Rocco, succumbed to injuries he suffered in the line of duty. He was stabbed during a pursuit and arrest of a suspect. Thoughts & Prayers for Rocco's handler, Officer Lerza & his family, and Rocco's brothers: the City of Pittsburgh Police & K-9 unit. Thank you all for your service to Pittsburgh.

Monday, January 27, 2014

that's what Springsteen sang. "Jersey Girl"

Springsteen sang,
          I know a place where the dancing's free
          Now baby won't you come with me
          'Cause down the shore everything's all right
          You and your baby on a Saturday night
          Nothing matters in this whole wide world
          When your in love with a Jersey girl
                                  "Jersey Girl" (music & lyrics by Tom Waits)

     This homemade dress transforms me into a 'Jersey Girl'. One similar to this, called the Vintage T-shirt Renewal dress, was sold at Free People for about $200. Since their dresses were 'one size fits all' and the t-shirts attached were random(and I only wanted one if Bruce was on it!), I decided to make my own. I bought both the tulle skirt and the vintage replica t-shirt on Ebay for a total of $41; and, I bought 1 yard of black trim at Joanne Fabrics for $8. I found the straps from an old dress and bra.
     With help from Mother Dearest, we cut the t-shirt, sewed it to the skirt then sewed on the ties and finished it off with the trim.....all by hand!

I couldn't throw away the back of the had Bruce and Clarence on it!! So, I sewed it onto an old throw pillow and now they sleep in my bed : )

+The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon +Jimmy Fallon +Bruce Springsteen +Bravo

Sunday, January 26, 2014

that's what Springsteen sang....intro

My Secret Talent:  I can guess any Bruce Springsteen song in 3 seconds or less. Until now, only my family has known of my gift.

     To me, the music of The Boss is gospel (an unquestionable truth, a doctrine of great importance, good news or story. Not to be confused with The Gospel.) So I will be dedicating a regular blog post inspired by his music titled "that's what Springsteen sang."

Coming soon.......

+The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon +Bravo +Bruce Springsteen +Pittsburgh City Paper




Friday, January 17, 2014

freeze...... tag at Mario's

     For the last couple of weeks I have been dragging around a big ol' bag of guilt. So heavy, in fact, that I must use this open forum to get it off my back, so to speak, and apologize to a lady I don't know.

    Let me rewind in time a bit in order to bring some clarity to my shameful non-reaction.

    I was at Mario's Saloon, Shadyside about 2 weeks ago when I spied, out of the corner of my eye, glaring like a beacon,... on a woman's back....... a price tag. Olly olly oxen free!   It was just dangling there by its tiny, emaciated arm of 3 inch micro-plastic.... hanging on for dear life to the back collar of her trapeze dress with a tell-tell neon orange sticker, silently screaming out to me, "please, tuck me away!" or "clearance rack."

   but I froze...I don't know why...but I did.

   I frantically looked around the crowded bar trying to find an ally who might have also noticed. How can they all be oblivious to the tag? I thought to myself, "C'mon, moonheads! Everybody look to your left! Everybody look to your right! Please don't go dance and forget about the price tag!"

   Honestly, I pondered giving her the tap to let her know that the Forever 21 tag (which she clearly wasn't) was brazenly outing her not-so-flattering dress size(as well as her penchant for finding a good deal). I also mentally devised a special ops plan to go stealth & slip it back beneath the black, polyester blend. I had the chance to play hero...... to rescue her from being crushed by the weight of her embarrassment and from(wrongly) concluding that the reason the cute guy in the brown suede-like jacket was ignoring her was because he spotted her 'markdown of the beast'.

   What possessed me to stay frozen in the moment, I'll never know.

   Hey. Maybe I would have done something.......but, without any warning, she & her 2 faux friends( I truly believe they saw their friend's 'slip' up...That's right, they had their shades on and their heels so high...and don't care if their friend had a good time) started on the move..... no!!!!..... wait!!.....where are they going?...Please don't parade that mini-store banner around the bar!!

    An immediate wave of relief hit me as I saw them proceed to the ladies situational anxiety was over. Surely her BFFs or the BR mirror would call it out or cut it off.....yes, I'll drink to that!!

    Finally, my mind could just slow down & enjoy right now........but then

stunt tag

    I froze again.....I watched in horror as the wee, rectangular,
 paper-wrecking ball swung right by me.....continuing on its destructive path to the other side of  Mario's........ruining both said lady's night and mine.

    I'm truly sorry and,

      Girls, I do solemnly swear that when I spot the next public & indecent exposure of a store stub (or stick-on size label), I will confront it and defuse your potential mortification regardless of my angst.

    I'll un-tag you, if you un-tag me.

*jesse j lyrics in play here
  Giphy GIF

+Andy Cohen +Bravo +Pittsburgh City Paper

Monday, January 13, 2014

Aubviously, it's a joke between Tomlin & me

    At the end of every episode of Watch What Happens Live +
Bravo , +Andy Cohen announces a Jackhole (meaning a**hole) and a Mazel (meaning winner) of the night. If you are sick (meaning crazy cool) like me, you know what I'm talking about. If not, I'm sure you can follow along.

    I am going to hijack this routine from Mr. Cohen's show and give out my own.  Undoubtedly, I'll change his award names, so it doesn't look like I'm blatantly picking his pocket.

    Drum roll.......

     My Sac-hole of the week goes to the +Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (and their 'players' involved with this) for the front page article on Sunday's (01/12/2013) issue, Vol.87, No.165, titled "Tomlin's word of choice". My head is bursting at how pathetic this was on so many levels and I'm clearly not even a Steelers fan!

    Were y'all so drunk from drowning your sorrows in ETOH...... due to the fact that the NFL playoffs were going on this weekend without the Steelers............ that you thought Tomlin's use of the word "obviously" was so newsworthy (or, even worse, amusing) as to paste it on the front page along with the death announcement of Ariel Sharon and summary of his life as, "a monumental figure in Israel's modern history"? Your Tomlin article even states that talk radio hosts, reporters and such had been talking about his choice word use months ago during the football this is plainly Old News, guys. Was it a passive-aggressive attempt to put Coach on blast to Steeler Nation for not getting "us" into the playoffs? Yeah, evidently I noticed the article's own word choices, e.g. "laziness", "rut", "bad sign", "missing something", "cultural marker", "faux coach". Did you really want to boast to the 'real news reporting' world that you "pulled transcripts from every regular-season and post-season Tuesday press conference" since 2010 and  did a "word-frequency analysis" (meaning you counted words)?  It is apparent that this article is so not front page (or any page to me) newsworthy. And you self-proclaim daily to be "One of America's Great Newspapers"? Shame on you. You get a big, fat F for this one.

      Maybe you, +Pittsburgh Post-Gazette , would like someone to go back & count all of your
daily spelling & grammar errors and factual "corrections" for the last 3 years and put that to print.......(and you undeniably have an entire staff that gets paid to proof read and prevent that stuff!!)     Pgh just got read!

     Now, for my Game Ball-zel of the week.....drum roll.....

     It goes to Coach Tomlin for not commenting, not even one word, for this lame article. 

     Next season at your press conferences, Coach, let's make it our own little inside joke that, when the word-obsessed crowd thinks they are hearing you say "obviously", and they snicker with each other and they idiotically keep tally of it............................

You & I will know what you are really saying..............your new word of choice,

     "Aub-viously" (meaning f*** you, sac-holes!).

+Pittsburgh Steelers +Pittsburgh Pirates +Pittsburgh Penguins +Pittsburgh Tribune-Review & +Pittsburgh City Paper +Andy Cohen

Thursday, January 9, 2014

my dog made the Pirate's logo

     I was walking the family dog in the frigid cold the other day and he stopped to try & relieve himself. I turned my head away to give him some privacy due to his shy bladder. When he finished, I turned back around and chuckled to myself.......His pee had formed what looked like a big letter 'P' in the fresh, white snow! Silly doggy!
     So, you can imagine my surprise when I heard on +WPXI News that the +Pittsburgh Pirates had disposed of their Dependsable Jolly Roger as their main logo and are Poised to change it to a big, yellow 'P'!
     Put the phone down, Pirate Crisis Manager. Take it easy. I know what your going to say. "That's gold, Jerry! Gold!" what they are all shades of? Yeah, that's right. YELLOW!
    I am no marketing marketing anything.... but, really?  I'm supposed to believe that the entire Pirate organization agreed that they would all be best represented....not by a menacing symbol meant to strike fear in foes like The Jolly Roger.......but by the yellow 'P'.
   I don't believe this was an accident. I think there was one guy at the +Pittsburgh Pirates office who, when he was a kid, got a high-flyer wedgie from some jocks at school which exposed his yellow-stained briefs to the entire school from a flagpole.
   With one symbolic act, this guy drained his years of repressed shame and humiliation..... Revenge in the form of the yellow 'P'......that will now stain every Pittsburgh Pirate player uniform and will rain golden over MLB's most beautiful ballpark.

gold is the new yellow

Is the Parrot still number one?

and I say this with Peace & love, Peace & love

Monday, January 6, 2014

Mayor Peduto: vested in our city

     Today, our great city of Pittsburgh will undergo a sorely needed 'Extreme Makeover.' As a South Sider that also works in the 'burgh, I couldn't be happier about it. Billy the Kid will officially take away the title of Mayor of Pittsburgh from the Baby. A big celebration will follow...... which I was not invited to. ( I will not comment on the $'s spent to partay! but, I'm sure I somehow bought a few botts of Dom for his guests.)

    The reason I'm so excited about this changing of the guard can be summed up in two words........Puffer Vest......yup....... Puffer Vest. City Hall is redding out their closet and exchanging the slick suits and a cloak of invisibility for the puffer vest. I thinks it's a very stylish and smart statement by Mayor Peduto.

Puffy in a puffer
   Although it tends to get a bad rap, I love a good puffer vest. It's unassuming yet requires a cool, confidence to wear; and, Mayor Peduto can definitely rock one. Some men are confused about how to wear this ironic garment....."if it's so cold out that I need a bulky & down-filled coat, why would I put on one without sleeves?", "How do I not end up looking like the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man?"  Well, look no further than Mayor Peduto for the answers. Layer a plaid, casual, button-down shirt and sweater that both coordinate and contrast with the color of the vest....... Add a pair of nicely worn-in, relaxed fit jeans and, guys, you are set to hold office in this look.

   Wearing the shiny, puffer vest around town & being photographed in it, Mayor Peduto reflects an image, like described in the above 'how-to-style'........ of casual & relaxed. Going out in public requires a candidate/mayor to shake a lot of hands, pat a lot of backs, hold babies, etc. The range of motion for the arms is so much greater in a sleeveless this chic choice shows me the man can make a practical decision. Roll his sleeves up & get to work?  Whether he's indoors or outdoors, he doesn't even have to take off his puffer to do this. I interpret this as the man is always ready to work & he doesn't like to waste time.

   But what the puffer vest symbolizes most to me hope for Pittsburgh's, that by not covering up his arms & by letting us see what he's layering underneath, Mayor Peduto will be open & honest with us.

   So, go ahead, Bill, and puff out your chest..... you F-ing run this town!


+Pittsburgh Post-Gazette +Pittsburgh Tribune-Review & +Pittsburgh City Paper
+Bravo +Andy Cohen +Eric Hagarty +WPXI News +WTAE-TV Pittsburgh +Pittsburgh Magazine
+Huffington Post Politics

Friday, January 3, 2014

main man, Mr. Sports & a new year's kiss

      A mere 30 bucks could have bought me 'bliss' at Diesel Lounge, South Side " I'm gonna let ya' in on a little secret, Ray." Diesel sucks!
      $120 could have turned me into a VIP at Villa "Know why there's a party for you, Ray?"  Because you just gave half of your paycheck to stand around in their club.
     A Dildo( Dude i, like, dated once) promised First Night revelry & fireworks. "I don't think so. No.  Definitely not."
    Hey, New Years Eve options... kiss my perfect, lil be-hind. Uh oh. Why? Because I went to my parent's house instead. "Disappointed? Why should I be disappointed?"
    Sure, I would like to don a "very sparkly, yeah, definitely very sparkly" dress, go to a place where "there's a lot of lights. very sparkly. very twinkly,"  "definitely have to dance on my date. Have to learn how to dance. Definitely" and end it with a New Year's kiss....but right now I don't have a 'main man' to do that with.
    So, instead, I spent New Years Eve with my dear parents, lil bros & cuz, Auntly, & Unclee . Definitely not disappointing... because we had our favorite 'main man',  B-A-T-C-H,  Mr. Sports in the house!!
    While y'all in Pittsburgh might not be familiar with this name, Mr. Sports is quite the celeb in the greater Youngstown area(luv me an oxymoron). Long time radio & sports personality, concert & event host, he currently can be heard on Y-103, bam!  The future of rock n' roll. Y-103, bam!     

circa 1997
    That's not Y we love him, though. It's because he's been a long time friend & honorary member of our family. And I could go on and on about Mr. Sports; how lmao funny he is, how he made our NYE party a blast and how "he, uh, remembers things, little things sometimes" (like The Babys' trivia n' tiny Greek ninja junk). But I won't.
   Although he's been divorced twice & has endured his share of crazy dates (or dating crazies), he remains a romantic optimist & hopeless romantic. After reconnecting with a lady he knew
ear kiss 'circa' Jan. 1, 2014
 30 years ago, he recently became engaged to soon-to-be Mrs. Sports and seems happy as ever.

   'Course it's ten minutes to WWHL +Andy Cohen ... so, I gotta wrap this up. I want to thank Mr. Sports for reminding me to be open & positive about finding my 'main man'.

*and thank you "Rain Man", 'circa ' 1988

I'll take this kiss on New Years 'circa' any your butt!!

+Bravo +Pittsburgh City Paper

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

why are they Robbin' Thick fried zucchini from me?

     I quivered with excitement as I held the thick shaft in my hands...slowly bringing it up to my was warm and firm...with girth I'd never experienced before. Eyes closed and mouth open...I gently inserted it...wrapped my lips delicately around it...then bit down as hard as I could. Ohhh yeahhh...It was the most delicious fried zucchini I had ever swallowed tasted!    
     Like the +Discovery TV 's Hoffman Crew finding out that their glory hole contains gold, I couldn't control my euphoria when discovering my form of edible gold at +RedRobinBurgers (

This pic is not enhanced...they are huge!
     Having finished off a large one....serving, I mulled over the fact that I had never come across zucc hung like this in Pittsburgh.  So, why are restaurants robbin' thicke fried zucchini from me? I don't get around to every fried zucc-serving establishment in the tri-state area, but I have seen my share of them and they are almost always skinny, slivers that go limp in my hand and don't satisfy me.
    After a quickie... +Google search, I have learned that, apparently, this is something Pittsburgh is famous for and even boasts about. In fact, F. Tambellini Ristorante, 7th Ave, Downtown, claimed to have invented this 'burgh style zucc, described as thin, crispy strips. I could not find any info to corroborate this claim. Unfortunately, the restaurant closed its door Feb 2013. I'm inclined to believe that there were gals in Pittsburgh doing Italian zucc's long before he was....although, their restaurant's website IS/was  (which was the original idea for the name of my,  f Tambellini's ).
     The Main Hotel in Carnegie was also rumored to have conceived the 'burgh style zucc. But, alas, it has been torn down and replaced with a CVS. This "old family recipe from the Main Hotel", however, lives on at Downey's House, Robinson Twp, as per their menu ( They also brag that they have an extremely large deck; so, gals, it might be worth checking out.

               Pittsburgh Style Zucchini
               talk about getting blasted
         For me, there are no blurred lines 

Red Robin Thicke fried zucchini appetizer is the best!

  I know you'll you want it
      I know I want it
                                hey, hey, hey
Giant Eagle Market District Restaurant on Urbanspoon
      * I found this great recipe for a lo fat/lo cal 'fried'(baked) zucchini. I made them thick and I subbed out the bread crumbs & parm with seasoned onion ring mix(has 0 fat cals) to make them more like RR's which have a beer-batter type coating. In addition to the marinara for dipping, I mixed 1 part Dijon mustard with 1 part fat free sour cream for another skinny dip.
* recipe from Eat Yourself Skinny

+Andy Cohen +Bravo +Pittsburgh City Paper +RedRobinBurgers 
Red Robin Gourmet Burgers on Urbanspoon