Saturday, February 27, 2010

The Virgin pulls a small scale Braveheart

#11 Never Have I Ever: Cursed out a government official

I've never been arrested before and I'm not about to. But that doesn't mean I don't get riled up about our government's actions and rant loudly to anyone within earshot during the times that I do.

I become so agitated that I'm practically vibrating with rage and every other word that spews from my lips is "goddamn" or "fuckin'". Sometimes wild hand gestures are involved that resemble hand-to-hand combat techniques. And on rare occasions I'll end my rant with a resounding rallying cry of, "Freedoooooooom!"

However, I'm only preaching to the choir.

The Down and Dirty: The sign on my block states that there's no parking from 8am-10am on Tuesday but I know for a fact that the street sweeper doesn't come until at least 9am. So last Tuesday I hopped out to my car at 8:10am for work only to discover a blasted $60 parking ticket neatly tucked under my windshield wiper. Judging by the still grimy asphalt and the quiet atmosphere, the street sweeper hadn't made its rounds yet and wasn't about to any time soon.

"Are you motherfucking serious?!" I balked in the middle of the street. I'd have thrown something if only the object in my hand wasn't my laptop bag. All day I stewed under my dark cloud at work, contemplating revenge against Parking Enforcer Salangron. That little weasel was probably waiting until the clock struck 8:00 to scatter parking tickets on cars like shitty confetti onto a parade. A parking enforcement lot is down the street from my office and I'd be lying if I said the sickly satisfying images of slashed tires and scraped paint didn't linger on my mind.

However, I am neither criminal or gutsy enough to pull off that sort of vandalism and convince myself that I can get away with it. But I am vindictive in a please-don't-arrest-me-but-I-hope-you-have-a-really-awful-day sort of way:

I contemplated writing something pointed like There are better ways to recover California's deficit or even something downright spiteful like I hope you feel the fiery sting of a thousand pubic lice but figured a picture (and some stabbing indents) says a thousand words.

The Aferglow: Alright, so I'm not exactly "cursing out" a government official rather than perturbing the office clerk that processes parking ticket payments. And this isn't that big of a deal compared to all the current political ongoings (even though it totally ruined my week). But this is probably be the closest I get to it without being charged with disorderly or threatening conduct or simply yelling, "You assholes!" as I drive by the lot.

Even though this is as passive-aggressive as it gets next to spitting into the envelope or sending it off with a few spider carcasses (not that any of those immature tactics crossed my mind or anything...), it's mildly comforting and somewhat amusing.

But that still doesn't mean I'm still not fuckin' pissed off about that goddamn parking ticket. Freedooooooooom!

Friday, February 26, 2010

The Virgin apparently does not look like a troll

#10 Never Have I Ever: Joined an online dating site

I'm convinced online dating is suited for: weirdos, pedos, perverts, hermits, freaks, losers, emotional train wrecks, and the occasional attention whore with self-esteem issues.

Sure, there are perfectly decent people out there in cyberland (just like there are perfectly decent people in prison) who simply don't have time to date in the real world but c'mon! Like I commented to my brother on the practice of matchmaking in China: If you can't find a mate in a country with 1.3 billion people, you've got problems, man.

I had met my last two serious boyfriends spontaneously and severely -- the sort of encounter where you just knew that you were meant to know this person in one way or another. In addition, I have great anecdotes to share about the respective original exchanges: I pushed one former flame in front of an oncoming bus but pulled him back to safety in the nick of time; I accidentally grabbed the other's man parts within hours of our initial handshake when he was still a minor at 17 (don't call Chris Hansen just yet; he became legal 5 days later and I was exactly one year older).

I wouldn't trade those memories for all the Warcraft experience points in the whole world wide web. Although I would never label myself a romantic, I'm a firm believer that chemistry is important and if you don't feel butterflies the first time 'round they're not going to come out of left field.

Laden with stories like that, I simply don't do online dating.

The Down and Dirty: So then why the hell did I decide to join an online dating site?! The short answer: Because I'm a glutton for pain.

The long answer: Because I read an article last month about a popular online dating website that had expelled members for holiday weight gain. is an exclusive community where members of the opposite gender vote whether or not candidates are "beautiful" enough to join the site based on their photos.

The masochist in me was practically writhing for a proper thrashing. I just couldn't not do it. It's like trying to drunkenly break into a zoo -- you know you're in for a world of pain but damn it'd be a blast if you could just make it past the tigers!

I established a profile and uploaded a nice albeit boring photo of myself. Yes, my lips curl skyward but Tyra would chastise me for not smiling with my eyes. I chalk it up to my lack of photogenicness (...that's not a word, is it?). Personally, I prefer quirky pictures of myself, ya know the ones where I'm making faces next to a bust of Bill Cosby or posing romantically with a Harlan's ground sloth.

Then I waited for the 48 grueling rating hours. It was absolutely torturous. Keeping my mind occupied wasn't working as I must have checked on my ratings every few hours. I'm a total coward when it comes to rejection but my crippling case of train wreck syndrome kept me coming back for more. I tried not to take it personally but dayum -- the internet is some serious butthurt business.

But lo and behold...

BeautifulPeople Network is pleased to inform you that the majority of members on found your application very attractive and granted you membership. Welcome to the BeautifulPeople community!

Well, great! I've been deemed not ugly enough by random dudes from all over the world that joined a site catered to narcissists who feed off approval from the opposite sex. Greeeaaaat.... After all the hoopla I might as well peruse the joint, right? I browsed the profiles on the site as one would poke around a dark, exclusive night club.

Hmm... didn't know receding hairlines were so common. Are ab shots a prerequisite? Wow, those are some bad nose jobs. Oh, well that's an interesting -- DEAR GOD! I guess they don't take their domain name that seriously after all...

The Afterglow: The concept of BeautifulPeople is one big circle jerk. A kinda-sorta-ish pretty one, but a circle jerk nonetheless. So far it's much less offensive than other dating sites but then again I have nothing of which to base it. Most of the comments are about how "nice" or "cute" another member's picture is. Their info sections are rarely referenced in emoticon-charged comments. And some random dude -- who I'm almost positive misspelled his own name -- just "kissed" me. I'll be damned if I know what that's supposed to entail.

This simply cannot be the future of dating. Feeling a warm, tingly sensation in your nether regions when you click on a profile picture does not equate to chemistry. An online profile is an overwrought, hyper-real representation. What good is a false sense of superficial utopia?

Why not log off, go out, and find something real? Yeah, it may be demanding but that's what life and love are -- hard. Life isn't effortless and if it is, then you're not living it.

Also, do you really want to one day relay a budding relationship in terms of, "Oh, it's a funny story! We both rated each other 9.5! Can you believe it? It was totally meant to be!"?

Me neither.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Virgin twitters, tweets, twats

# 9 Never Have I Ever: Tweeted a celebrity and received a response

Foreplay: While I think technology has overstepped its boundaries (no, I don't care if your dog's new haircut makes him look like an old lesbian; yes, I'd like those precious seconds of my life back), Twitter is awfully resourceful when you're trying to stalk a celebrity's whereabouts.

And while I don't get particularly star struck -- although I did quietly spazz out when I met the editor of Star Wars Episode IV at work -- I hold a special place in my heart for a select few.

I follow a limited amount of so-called celebrities on Twitter -- 5 tops. I mostly lurk in the shadows of the world wide web and read their tweets like a sketchy, voiceless voyeur. But every so often when I come across responses to fans, an ugly part of me jerks with slight jealously. I'm not envious of the personalized message, but of the fan's guts to actually interact with one of their idols.

The Down and Dirty: After mulling over my literal handful of celebrity twitters, I decided to go with Alex Kapranos, lead singer and guitarist of Franz Ferdinand. He seems down to Earth, friendly, and truth be told, my 17 year old heart still goes atwitter whenever I hear a Franz song.

I carefully type @alkapranos in my Twitter box. And then stop. Herein is where the problem lies: I have nothing to say. I'm not so witty as to attract the attention of a celeb by way of my sharp tongue (or fingers in this case) and charm their cyberpants off like a pro online predator.

But after some time, I decide to go with: "I once accidentally insulted some dude at a Franz show. Two months later I found out it was Zac Efron..."

Side story: Friends and I went to see Franz Ferdinand perform as a musical guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live when I was 18. Zac Efron happened to be a guest as well. High School Musical had just premiered on the Disney Channel and seriously no one knew who this kid was. After thoroughly rocking out, we try to meet the band in the alley behind the El Capitan Theater. We had been waiting for a good 45 minutes when this pretty boy came out to sign autographs for his meager amount of fans.

I was at one end of the barricade and he was making his way down the line when I leaned back to a friend and joked, "Who the hell is this kid? Can we just tell him to send Franz out?"

When I turned back around, I came face to face with Zac Efron himself. His expression can be best described by this emoticon: :-/
while I looked more like: :S

And then -- AND
THEN -- I greeted him with a, "Heeeeeyyyyyy" not unlike the Fonz. Ugh...

Anyway, I waited for a reply. And waited. It's been a day and I've yet to hear anything back. But then again, he hasn't tweeted (twat?) during the time I tagged him in my message. I wasn't really expecting a reply, but I can't help but to be somewhat bummed out by it.

The Afterglow: Trying to talk to a celebrity via the internet won't kill me. My self esteem is just as healthy and humbly low as it was before I squawked without receiving a comeback. Oh well, back to slinking around the shady crevices of online social networking for me.

However, I do wish I would've given Zachary Quinto the Vulcan salute outside a gay bar when I had the chance a couple weeks ago.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Virgin puts some hair on her chest

#8 Never Have I Ever: Ordered a "manly" drink

Most people would never guess that I had ever willingly abstained from alcohol. I'll be honest here, it took a while for booze to weasel its way into my heart (shocking, I know).

It wasn't until a wine tasting during my junior year of college that got me addicted to the stuff. Wine eventually led to my current clemency towards beer. But until that point, I was left with hard liquor to tend to my social lubricating needs. When you're in college, you can't exactly afford top shelf brands. And let me tell you, you do not -- under any circumstances -- drink Gran Legacy without a mixer. EVER.

So I guess you could say I became (and still am) a connoisseur of so-called "girly" drinks. It's a label to which I take offense since "girly" implies a weak, fruity cocktail (FYI: Newcastle's alcohol content is 4.7%; Smirnoff Ice's is 5%). I'll have you know: despite being acclimated to "girly" hootch, I can drink many phallus-festooned friends under the table. Not gonna lie though -- my favorite cocktail is a Key Lime Martini rimmed with a graham cracker crust and garnished with a maraschino cherry. Dear lord...

Anyway, maybe I've watched too many film noirs but the conventions and social implications of "manly" drinks have been a constant on my mind lately. Something along the lines of a Manhattan or a Gimlet. I always wondered if those actually tasted like anything other than aromatic ethanol.

The Down and Dirty: Hitchcock and I arrived early (or should I say on time; all you other bastards were late) at the Black Boar for some celebratory libations in honor of Spiderman's birthday. What with it being Monday and having the obligation of a job the next day, I was originally resigned to a glass of red wine for the evening -- an efficient way to get a buzz and a healthier heart! What more could I ask for?

At the bar, Hitchcock ordered an Old Fashion in tribute to Mad Men. I realized I hadn't done my DV task for the day and time was a-tickin'. After staring longingly at the amber bottles lining the bar, I knew what I had to do.

I thought about ordering a Martini (shaken, not stirred) but remembered that I sampled one in college... and immediately chased it with a Kamikaze. Perhaps a Sidecar? But that seemed like it had the potential to taste light and sweet from the lemon juice and triple sec. That's it -- screw mixers! I want pure, unadulterated alcohol.

Whiskey on the rocks I bellowed to the bar wench -- er, bartender; I got ahead of myself there. Hitchcock suggested I go for Johnny Walker black label.

I swirled the tumbler for a moment before taking a swig. The initial flavor was warm and smokey. The whiskey held a deep, fiery core with a dulcet mellow finish. Not unlike dunking a piece of burnt toast into watered-down molasses.

The Afterglow: That was tasty. However, I noticed my whiskey prevented anything more than a good buzz because of the nature of its consumption. "Girly" drinks taste so damn innocuous that I'm usually siphoning them directly to my stomach. In fact, most "girly" cocktails are much more potent than your average "manly" fare. If I'm looking to get properly shibliterated, I reach past the pint of beer for the Vodka Sunrise. But whiskey is a complex flavor that needs time to rest on the tongue. Unless, of course, you want to get crunk.

Just because a concoction tastes like it can strip paint off a submarine does not make it manly -- it makes it a shitty drink. I indignantly reject the idea that "manly" drinks will put hair on your chest or help you develop a pair of testicles brimming with testosterone-rich sperm or otherwise toughen you up. Because, son, I will wipe the floor with you -- Mojito poised in hand.

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Virgin hangs ten

# 7 Never Have I Ever: Tried surfing

Foreplay: Discounting the lack of blond hair and scarcity of “like” in my speech, I fail at being the stereotypical beach bunny.

I curse the sun; I wear SPF80 sunblock religiously. The ocean freaks me out; who knows what's hiding in there -- it's not like you can actually see the bottom. I mean, have you seen Shark Week?! To put it simply, the beach and I just don't get along what with it wanting to kill me; last summer I took up boogie boarding only to have 3 lifeguards swim to my rescue from a gnarly rip tide as the weekend crowd looked on.

But I've always wanted to surf. It just looks so friggin' cool -- beach gods be damned!

The Down and Dirty: I pestered Hermosa enough that he agreed to take me surfing on one of the worst surfing days possible. As we drove into RAT Beach, the wind was pounding, the waters were choppy, and not a soul was on the shore. Hermosa and I soldiered on but if donning my wetsuit was any indication of things to come, I was going to be in a world of pain. That thing was trying to simultaneously choke me and give me camel toe.

It was time to get my feet wet -- literally. Initially, I was owning it. I expertly mounted the surfboard like Tera Patrick. I could paddle like a spry Golden Retriever. I even caught a small wave into shore boogie board style.

But somewhere along the lines, the beach gods noticed I was having fun and decided to put an end to it. This was brought to light when a rough wave suddenly wrenched me towards an unwelcoming mass of seaweeds at a less than leisure speed. Deciding it was better to jump ship than get a face full of slimy plant life, I lurched off the surfboard and promptly ate it on the rocky shore. Not having swallowed enough salt water through my nostrils, another wave decided to offer me a few more gulps.

I later drowned my sorrows in Sauvignon blanc and chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake in between snotting sea salt into my napkin.

The Afterglow: You would think that I'd be deterred from ever stepping foot onto the beach again, but I am so pumped to kick some Poseidon tail! I want to surf f'real next time. None of this lame boogie boarding on a surfboard business -- no. I want to paddle out, catch a wicked wave, and flip off the ocean as I ride it in like the freakin' king of Siam on an elephant!

Alright, so that may be a little advantageous. I just don't want to swallow any more salt water. Is that too much to ask?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Virgin acts her age while boozin'

#6 Never Have I Ever: Consumed anything that was older than me.

Foreplay: I have no qualms with booze or things that are older than I am. Which is why I had no problem strapping on a pair of pumps, slapping on some red lipstick, and braving the dreary nighttime rain to meet a group of older friends for some old fashion boozin' in Downtown Los Angeles on a Friday night.

The Down and Dirty: After a failed attempt at The Edison (who knew people still wanted to get crunk in the rain? Right on!), friends and I made a hop, skip, and jump over to The Varnish. To get there, you have to first walk through Cole's, a rustic little restaurant. A dark door at the back of the establishment, guarded by a demure gentleman and a haughty hostess, opens up to an anachronistic, seated bar operating similarly to a Prohibition era speakeasy. Now, this esoteric attitude would be awesome if Cole's didn't already have a bar at the front of the restaurant...

But anyway, after our "15 minute" wait (aka 45 minutes) our party was led to a dim booth to commence our boozin'. Even though I was content with my Hot Buttered Rum, I couldn't help but be utterly intrigued by my tablemate's 23 year old shot of rum if only for the fact that it was older than me. I guess it didn't help that I was at least 4 years younger than everyone else at the table.

After a plethora of jokes about the rum's and my conception (har har, boozin' --> sexin'; got it), I took a modest sniff. The rum was warm and smooth going down but left a spicy bite on my lips. I'm not a shot kind of girl but the 1920s atmosphere definitely called for a classy thimble of aged liquor - neat. It was perfect for the speakeasy setting. I could practically taste the soap residue from the wannabe bathtub rum.

The Afterglow: After Varnish, I had a few more drinks along our Downtown bar hop, danced on stage at an Irish pub, and then woke up 4 hours later for work. Which is when I wrote most of this entry having successfully staved off a hangover. As much as booze acts like your BFF4lyf, in the end hydration is your friend, kids.

I'm still not a shot pounder; definitely a cocktail sipper even in a speakeasy. If I'm going out to a swanky bar that employs a bonafide mixologist rather than your neighborhood bartender, I'm getting the most complicated bang for my buck, damn it.

But still... how awesome is it to drink alcohol that was produced the same time your parents were conceiving you?!

P.S. I literally just read this article about how the U.S. government poisoned alcohol during Prohibition resulting in approximately 10,000 deaths. WTF, man?!

Friday, February 19, 2010

The Virgin leaves a lasting mark

#5 Never Have I Ever: Written in wet cement.

Foreplay: I'm a good girl. Sure, I curse like a fuckin' sailor and I have a bad habit of pushing people's buttons, but generally I'm an upstanding citizen -- even the type of girl some poor sucker can bring home to mom.

But as I meandered home from the gym this afternoon and spotted a wet patch of cement on the sidewalk, I was drawn like a delinquent moth to the flame.

The Down and Dirty: Initially, I thought nothing of it and continued on my merry way. Apparently, there had been some minor construction on my street that morning. The 3x4 block was surrounded by dissuasive orange cones and cautionary yellow tape so the good girl in me advised to pay no mind. But as I kept walking, the wet cement continued to invade my thoughts. It was like a little devil was squealing into my ear: But wait! How often do you stumble over newly established sidewalk? When are you ever going to get a chance like this again? Duuuude, c'mon!!

By this time I was back home. I hemmed and hawed for a good hour before finally convincing myself that it was now or never. I grabbed my camera and my keys and made my way down the street. Now, my street is an offbeat path of a much busier drag in Hollywood. While there isn't a constant flux of cars in my specific neighborhood, traffic is literally a stone's throw away. Plus, cops use it as a DUI bust on weekends.

Being the oh so inconspicuous criminal that I am, I slinked around the scant construction site for a few minutes waiting for traffic to die down. When I realized that rush hour was quickly approaching, I squatted next to the cones and started clicking away on my camera in hopes that passing drivers would just think I was an artsy-fartsy chick who was appreciating the beauty of the John Deere excavator.

I had planned to write something full of hippie adulation like ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE but upon closer inspection the wet cement was far from set and badly formed. It looked like gray frosting rather than future sidewalk. In my nervous haste, I also forgot to bring a writing utensil so I chose the least important key on my lanyard for the task (Yeah, I keep my keys on a lanyard. What of it? Thought so...).

After glancing over my shoulder for the millionth time and building up a severe nervous sweat on my brow, I hastily scratched a heart into the cement. Oh, hmm... that wasn't very heart-like at all. Looks more like an unbalanced liver. Perhaps if I retraced that side... oh, no. No, now it looks like it has cirrhosis.

I panicked at the sudden crescendo of approaching cars and scrambled posthaste back to my apartment, leaving the sad little liver behind for eternity.

The Afterglow: Dude, that was SO STRESSFUL! And it wasn't even pretty or inspiring! Never again. During my panicked scurry back to my apartment, I smeared tons of wet cement all over my keychain. My rape whistle is now half sealed with cement. I don't want to think about what karma is trying to tell me with that one, but damn. Lesson learned.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Virgin sings the blues

#4 Never Have I Ever: Recorded a song.

I hate hate hate being showered with attention if only for the fact that criticism and rejection scares the ever loving shit out of me. However, I do love to sing but rarely by myself or in public -- and never without liquid courage. I always grab a partner and a Screwdriver when hitting up some karaoke. While I don't believe ignorance is bliss, in this case it's freakin' euphoria. Oh, did I hit a flat note? I'm sorry, I can't hear over the rhythmic glug-glug of this fine bottle of Charles Shaw chardonnay.

I'd like to think I have a pleasant albeit low voice but middle school and high school choir is as far as my technical singing abilities go. Needless to say I was surprised, flattered, and anxious as all hell when Hermosa asked me to sing a duet with him.

The Down and Dirty: Hermosa invited me over to record a cheerful little diddly he wrote about self-righteous pilgrims. I really couldn't turn down an offer like that.

As I watched as Hermosa set up the equipment in his makeshift studio (a Macbook, Pro Tools, and a bad ass microphone in his bedroom) my feet began icing over. Now, I was totally game on my drive over. I had some time to study the lyrics, get the the rhythm down pat, and exercise my voice. But as I stared into the condenser mic my mind went blank, my trembling limbs couldn't keep a non-River-dance tempo, and my voice was going to either squeak or growl uncontrollably at any given minute.

I needed liquid courage. STAT. So we each had a glass of wine. And then another. And then a couple beers on top of that. I think one of us suggested that we start recording before our slur starts speeching. What?

We hit record and went through the song a few times before I got a chance to hear any of the tracks. I already knew I was off but I had no idea what to expect. What the hell was that? Was that me? Seriously?! I've been told I have a low, smokey voice but have I always sounded so... drag queeny?

We tried to forge ahead but the damage was done. I was like Punxsutawney Phil who saw his shadow and fled back down the hole to drown in self-deprecation and an unholy amount of discount Ferrero Rocher chocolates. I wasn't quite willing to give up until I had something decent to show for my efforts but this pilgrim business was working as well for me as it did with Pocahontas.

Hermosa suggested we switch to a more mellow, almost bluesy number he had written. Well, hot damn! Maybe the song fit my range better, or perhaps it was my fervent frustration, or it could've been because I was finally sobering up -- but I didn't sound too shabby this time 'round. I wouldn't go about posting it on YouTube, but I wouldn't mind playing it ever so quietly alone in my room when I know that my flatmate is gone for the weekend so that I can scream into my pillow when my vomit-inducing chagrin finally spills over.

The Afterglow: The sound of my own voice still provokes a full body shudder of mammoth proportions but it also baits my inner perfectionist to create a piece to be proud of. Recording is actually heaps of fun if you don't take it too seriously. I'd love to have another go at it; perhaps sans alcohol. Ha, who am I kidding?! Pass the pinot noir, please!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Virgin breaks a sweat... and her leg (almost)

#3 Never Have I Ever: Participated in an exercise class

Most people I talk to are somehow surprised when I tell them about my complete and utter lack of bodily kinesthetic. I've had long time friends outright laugh at my moves against nature when attempting to teach me basic choreography -- the kind of laugh that makes a person double over, wheeze for precious air, and never let me live it down (I'm lookin' at you, Loverboy). I still confuse my left and right ("I write with my RIGHT hand, therefore I'm left with my LEFT hand." Clever mantra, I know.) My mother used to stick neon green Post-It notes to the corners of her glass dining table so I wouldn't run into them. I've choked on my own saliva more times in the last month than I care to announce. 

Basically, I'm a total klutz. So I was pretty damn confounded to find myself shakin' what my momma gave me in an exercise class.

The Down and Dirty: I woke up early this morning with the purpose of working off the five triple chocolate chip cookies and two helpings of pasta from the night before (it's that kind of week, ok?). As I walked down to my neighborhood 24 Hour Fitness, I debated whether to endure my usual four mile treadmill run or indulge in some Murakami on the elliptical. But as I flashed my guest pass at the obscenely perky employee behind the desk, he asked if I was here for Zumba.

"Uh... who?"

Zumba was starting in ten minutes. It was the brand spankin' new fitness program they just implemented.

Zumba? That sounded like a martial arts type class like capoeira or tae bo. It was still unforgivably early enough for me to feel like indiscriminately kicking ass and taking names. Did I need any special gear for it? No. Did I need to have prior experience? No. Before I could ask if there was any risk of bodily injury he chirped, "Just have fun, girl!" And snapped his fingers not unlike a sassy Tim Gunn. I didn't need to be snapped at twice.

I was all pumped for some Xena warrior princess battle cries as I hi-ya and hadukened my way out of my grumpy morning haze. That is, until my eyes noticed a description of Zumba posted outside the room. It wasn't so much an ass-kicking session as it was an exercise class. And not just any exercise class, but Zumba... "a fusion of Latin and international music that creates a dynamic, exciting, and effective fitness system." They forgot to include the addendum "when you're not attacking yourself and others around you."

Remember when I mentioned that I still have difficulty distinguishing my left from my right? At one point, it was like a bad sitcom unfolding right before my horrified eyes. The rest of the class deftly spins to the right as per the instructor's lead, and me? I hurl my body towards the left and end up nose to sweaty nose with a flustered, plump blond.

This was after being blinded by the unnecessarily large disco ball (is there a correct size for a disco ball in a gym?) as the instructor ordered me to "pump [my] pelvis" while galloping in place. To say that I looked like a lame pony in heat would be an insult to equestrians. So not only was there a dance component to humiliate me, there were seizure-inducing strobe lights as well. It felt like the most embarrassing rave of my life.

The Afterglow: Zumba is a hardier cardio workout than I had chalked it to be. I suppose rapid pelvis-thrusting, maniac butt-popping, and relentlessly flailing your extremities works up quite a sweat. But my pounding heartbeat, red face, and quivering muscles can easily be attributed to the mortification that occurred every time I caught sight of my offbeat body thrashing in one of the class' mirrored walls.

BRB, chasing after my dignity.

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Virgin bats for the other team

#2 Never Have I Ever: Eaten anything resembling a vagina

Foreplay: Don't get me wrong; I'm all for vaginas. I'm a self-declared feminist and will make you pay if you treat it like an F-word. I once nervously stuttered through an audition for the Vagina Monologues in college. My latest Facebook status reads: Lunar New Year, Valentine's Day, my period started. It's a very red day. I own a goddamn shirt emblazoned with "Vagina: It's What's For Dinner" smack dab on the front. Yet I can't say that I'm all that enthusiastic when it comes to going to town on yonic foods.

First of all, I've never been a huge fan of seafood (undeniably the most vaginal cuisine). I only just began to be civil to lobster and crab within the last two years. Shrimp and I have always been on good terms but now I'm acquainted to it outside of its tempura attire. Salmon is the only fish I will eat outside of sushi and that just happened in 2010. Secondly, I'm very sensitive to the texture of foods. Hummus was a cold, gritty nightmare for my mouth for the longest time; soft, mushy, overly juicy (shudder) peaches, plums, and pears are not allowed to pass through my lips. Lastly, these particular fish of the shell variety are not the uh... prettiest things. They look the same cooked as they do raw. They come in shells; what exactly are they trying to hiding in there? And clams look like they have eyes. Dear god...

But after shoving something phallic down my throat in the last entry, I decided to bat for the other team.

The Down and Dirty: For a belated Lunar New Year dinner, my parents set up a hot pot meal for the family. Seafood is usually the main fixin' but I was able to get away with stuffing my face with soy sauce chicken, soup-seared beef, and boiled spinach as a kid. But ever since discovering the miracle cooking agent also known as garlic after years and years of repugnant aversion towards the bulb, I'm more than willing to put my taste buds to the test with new foods.

As I assessed the spread in front of me, I ignored the savory plate of thinly sliced beef, the smell of freshly boiled chicken, the steam of delicate cubes of tofu. Instead forged ahead towards the daunting platter of raw mussels, oysters, and clams like a determined yet bewildered teenage boy towards third base. I plucked one of each and plopped them into the boiling pot of soup. At this point, I realized I didn't know what I was waiting for. I wasn't kidding when I said that they look exactly the same cooked as they do raw -- a gross mess of flapping flesh. Dad finally took pity on me after a few minutes and fished them out for me.

The mussel landed closest to my chopsticks. It was a vivid mustard yellow color and the size of an oblong gumball. Deciding that staring would further intimidate me (as it would to most young fellows when face to face with their own yonic endeavors), I held my breath and dove in quickly (as most young fellows should). It was... chewy. And soft. And chewy. I don't think I was even done swallowing when I blindly popped the oyster in my mouth. This was also soft. And chewy. I may appear to lack a thesaurus but honestly, there is no other way to describe devouring these fleshy bits while holding my breath and squeezing my eyes shut in silent horror and prayer.

I had to finally inhale -- or should I say gasp -- when I came upon the clam. This fucker was looking at me. Now, further research tells me that they're actually siphons but I dare anyone to tell me that pair of prongs don't look like eyes of omnipotent fury as if the clam is goading you, "Yeah, I know you're gonna eat me. You go ahead and fuckin' try." I apologetically turned it around, sucked the little bugger into my mouth, gave a few overtly aggressive chomps, and knocked back my bowl of soup. I came up flushed and panting.

"What are you doing?" my mother implored after witnessing my table mannerisms.

You don't want to know.

The Afterglow: Alright, it wasn't so bad but I didn't go back for seconds. And I definitely would not order anything from the mollusca phylum when eating out. I'm just not cut out for ensconced seafood with questionable consistency.

While I'm not put off by yonic foods, phallic ones are just easier to choke down. Next time I should probably stick to chocolate vaginas. Now, I'd be down for that.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Virgin is tempted by the snake

#1 Never Have I Ever: Eaten an animal with less than two legs

It should only be fitting that I pop my Daily Virgin blog cherry with a hot, thick sausage.

Foreplay: By no means do I have an aversion to meat. Chicken, cows, pigs, and the occasional duck are frequent visitors to my digestive track. I even enjoy less-enthused body parts like cow tripe and chicken feet.

But nothing I do can rival my father's adventurous appetite. The man watched a bat vs. snake throw down in a restaurant in Vietnam and then ATE THEM BOTH. I'm not talking about a peppered fillet served with garlic-sauteed Chanterelle mushrooms. No. The animal handler/cook chopped the heads off of each creature in the middle of the restaurant, drained their warm bloods into respective chilled beer mugs, served their plump hearts on a cocktail dish, and then fired up the grill for some bat and snake barbeque. My third grade self will never be able to unsee my mom's enthusiastic tourist pictures of their unique dining experience.

This minor childhood trauma induced by my father thus inspired me to test my taste buds with rattlesnake. How Freudian of me.

The Down and Dirty: Daywalker, Gemini, and I made our way to downtown L.A.'s arts district to uncover Wurstküche. The loosely Central Europe eatery is best described as a small warehouse turned hipster-influenced gastropub furnished with barn ware. Think: German yokel. The dimly lit room is occupied by three long communal picnic tables and benches, flanked by small tables on the outskirts, and finished with a beer bar on one side. There is a separate, bright room in the back to order food. A delightful fedora-festooned man shuffled us into the surprisingly long line for it being 10:30 PM.

I had already Yelped Wurstküche and had my mouth set for the rattlesnake and rabbit sausage with Belgian fries and a cool pint of Old Rasputin. However, I hadn't anticipated the lack of seating. I felt like a desperate vulture waiting to swoop on an opening at any of the trough-like tables. Annoyingly, our food arrived before my bird of prey instinct could kick in. But once we finally snagged a section of bench, I was not disappointed.

Served in a generic hot dog bun, the rattlesnake and rabbit sausage was zestfully juicy and mildly spicy. I ordered it with yellow bell peppers and grilled jalapenos which added the perfect combination of sweetness and heat. A conservative squirt of ketchup gave a much appreciated tangy kick. The Belgian fries were thick and not as crispy as I had hoped but they were decent when accompanied by any of the four dipping sauces we ordered.

My glass of Old Rasputin was the only letdown. First of all, it had a head that simply would not die. A lack of beer-pouring ability at a German gastropub? Blasphemy I say! Secondly, it was much too dark for my liking. The bitter taste bud receptors on the back of my tongue protested thoroughly until I chased it away with a bite of rattlesnake, a fry drenched in buttermilk ranch, or a swipe of Gemini's framboise. Shouldn't I be washing my meal down with a beer rather than the other way around?

The Afterglow: All in all I'm glad I tried rattlesnake. It was delightfully delicious and it inspires me to be more adventurous with my meals. Doesn't mean I'll be running with the buffaloes to grab a bite, but if someone offers me kangaroo or ostrich I won't grimace... too much. After all, I am my father's daughter.

I've got to hand it to Wurstküche. You've got one solid snake.