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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Good News Blog Readers!

I've been working long and hard, and my new website is finally ready!  I will be posting all of my new Monday blogs on BretonyBoheme.com, so please go check out the new site and tell me what you think! ;)

This site will still be here for my entire blog archive (if any body really wants to dig that deep), and I may post updates here from time to time, but my main site will now be BretonyBoheme.com.

Subscribe to the mailing list if you wanna stay in the loop!  (Also, donate if you REALLY wanna be in the loop)
Thank you for your continued support...

- B



Monday, April 13, 2015

     Bike Life




     Bonjour!  (I have no idea why, but I've been doing a faux French accent for the past few days, and I am really loving it.  So just read this as a French person would...if you will!)  This week has been pretty active for me.  It's good!  I really needed to start getting things together.  I know the cold weather can be very depressing sometimes, and this winter seemed to last longer than (ya know, honestly, I've been sitting here for far too long trying to think of a decent metaphor to compare the long winter to.  At the end of the day it was just longer than...) a muther f*cker!  But warm weather can really motive us to actually get out of the house and get active!

     I for example, got a bike this past week!  (I know right, who the heck have I become!?)  I use to be so very leary of riding bikes in NYC.  It can be very dangerous actually.  The first time I rode in the city,  was on a Citibike thing.  I did feel like a huge nerd.  It's sort of like riding a rental car with a bunch of advertisements.  It was fine for a first time city rider like me I suppose, but yes, very nerdy.  Also, I only rode citibikes at night because there was less traffic.  Now that I have a bike of my own, I guess I really do have to start learning to ride it during the day with the rest of civilization.  This week I did get a lot of practice in during normal waking hours.  I rode around Brooklyn though, not Manhattan (not ready for those daytime bridges just yet! Lest we forget the Bike/Bridge Debacle of 14'??)   Me and my wonderful, extremely helpful counterpart rode up and down Bedford Ave, through beautiful neighborhoods that I never even knew existed in Brooklyn (seriously, such beautiful homes and brownstones)!  We rode to Prospect Park, which was over run with active Brooklynites, their pets, and children.  Seriously though, riding through the park is almost as chaotic as city streets.  We almost took out a little puppy! It was still pretty tiresome riding up all of those darn hills, but I was assured that it gets easier the more you ride.  I sure hope so, because guess what people...biking is literally the most efficient form of travel that I've personally experienced in the city.  Let me tell you why!
     First of all, after you buy the darn bike, that's it!  There is nothing else to buy!  (Well actually, I do need to get a bike light and a lock) But honestly, it's a one time investment that far surpasses the expenses of a weekly/monthly metro card or obviously a gas guzzling car.  Once you buy a bike, your basic transportation needs are taken care of!  Second of all, yes, It seems stressful to think of riding everywhere you go and being all sweaty and out of breath, trust me, no one is more of a princess than me.  But I actually think I'm the same amount of tired (maybe a tad more), as riding, transferring trains, and walking down a billion stairs.   Third,  bikes cut through all traffic!  You wait for nothing when you bike.  Technically, yea, you are supposed to obey all traffic rules (which EYE do), but once you get the hang of the flow of things,  you can start to ride through everybody.  It's better than being stuck in traffic or stuck on in the middle of a train delay...helpless!  Lastly, it's freakin fun!  Minus all the inclinations you have to ride up, but hey, maybe some people think those are fun.  I feel like a kid again riding a bike for the most part.  Basically, If you want to save money, and be in complete control of your riding experience in a fun way, biking is for you!  Dangerous?  Eh, perhaps, but then again, what in this day and age ISN'T?  Even eating a hamburger is "dangerous" now for Pete's sake! (Vegans, we will talk soon...)

Anywho,  biking is awesome, so try it if you can!  Also this week I've been trying to take more photographs and videos to correspond with my weekly adventures.  It's hard because I'm always looking kinda cray.  How do celebrities always look so painstakingly decent in all of their candid paparazzi shots, and I'm out here lookin' like Felicia from Friday?  The world may never know.



I just wanna know who I thought I was right here...


p.s. I'm also looking for people who live in NYC to be in videos with me, nothing too intense (at first), perhaps just to interview New Yorkers!  Email me bretonymcgee@gmail.com

p.p.s. I always thought Felicia from Friday would've been super cute if she let those braids out!

Monday, April 06, 2015



A Yearning for Learning





     Hello everyone! Happy Monday! Spring is finally here... I think? I hope. Isn't it crazy how when people have nothing to talk about with each other, they always start talking about the weather? "So... This weather is crazy right?"  I suppose it's something that everyone can relate to without getting to in depth into an argument.  But I love arguments!
   Anywho, enough about nonsensical atmosphere talk, I've recently started working on my new website, and it is drop dead awesome! I don't know what took me so long to finally just break down and get serious about it.  Well actually I do know, web design is expensive! I decided to take matters into my own hands and learn how to design it myself.  Yes, I know I'm not a highly trained professional, but do u really have to be? I'm just taking it very slowly, one step at a time, and finding out how to create the look I want each step of the way.  It's not rocket science ( and come to think of it, rocket science is probably not all that hard either). I remember a long time ago, I tried to pretend I was a genius and started learning how to code HTML.  It was actually kinda fun! HTML is kinda like learning a language. I also think learning languages is kinda fun! Perhaps I just think learning in general is fun.
     This world has so much information so why limit how much there is to learn?  Usually in life we are forced to learn things against our will (elementary school, middle school, high school), and then told me MUST learn certain things in order to succeed in life (college). When we grow up and realize we can learn whatever interests us, that's when it can actually become something to enjoy. 

     With all the technology available these days, it's hard NOT to learn things.  One time I learned how to open a can without a can opener from youtube! Actually youtube has taught me many great things; how to cook, do my makeup, jailbreak an iPhone.  (Not that I'm gonna try, but) I feel like I could learn how to perform open heart surgery from there! Wikipedia, even though it may have it's informational faults from time to time, can really teach you a lot about everything too.  A link based, online encyclopedia?? Come one! Best website ever! Basically, almost anything you want to learn is online, right at your finger tips.
     Maybe that's what's wrong with me though, the more I learn, the more things I want to start doing.  This in turn creates a huge list of things for me to start trying to do each day, to the point where I get semi overwhelmed with it all.  Is there a word for people who see something being done (dancing, sports, acrobatics, speaking Arabic) and automatically think, "Ooooh I wanna do that!" And proceed to learn how to do it? Welp, that's me. So far in my life, I've wanted to be an architect, artist, cosmetologist, DJ, taste tester, pastry chef, lawyer, psychologist, marriage counselor, tennis player, classical pianist, TV show host, clothing designer, housewife, interior designer, and I'm SURE I'm missing a few. I'm also one of those people who want to just do everything myself because I don't trust people, eh! 

     Which finally brings me to my website! I have heard before from people that I lack focus.  Well frankly, I do! I wanna do, learn, and experience everything I can in life! I don't really wanna limit myself or narrow it down. Not one bit! But I think I did finally find a way to do it in a pseudo-sane way...

     I have decided that I am a life reviewer (maybe I'll think of a classier way to put that).  Let me explain... Since I love doing a bunch of different things and I don't want to focus on one in particular, I WILL do everything, and report on my experiences.  Which is what I do anyway for the most part right? I'm going to live my life the best way I know how, singing, dancing, creating, eating, traveling, and trying to be happy.  The new website will hopefully be a place where I can do all of that.  

     It really is cute! I can't wait to share it with everyone.  Remember though, you really can learn just about anything you want, trust me, it's a lot easier than you think.  The hardest part is always starting.  The second hardest part is finishing.  The middle is fun!

Stay tuned peeps! 

p.s.  Ugh, now I really AM curious about open heart surgery.

p.p.s. Check out the SUPER testing phase of my website here
(It really is super minimal right now, but just focus on the layout and design...all by me!)

Monday, March 30, 2015

A Penny for your Food Thoughts




Hello every!  Happy and beautiful Monday.  Still a cold spring...still freezing my nads off!  This past week was pretty chill for me.  Lots of kitty cuddling, which I won't complain about. What I'm really trying to avoid saying is that I did a bunch of nothing!  And yea, sure, sometimes I felt a little bad about waking up at 3pm, or binge watching random series on Netflix, but for the most part, why should I feel bad? I know in this game of life, we are conditioned to think that we should be "working hard", which is fine, but what about those of us that just want to live life each day in new and different ways?  I have no problem working toward a particular goal that I'm trying to accomplish, but working hard every day?  Maybe it's not for me!  Some people thrive off of mundane daily tasks.  I suppose I could see the joy in that.  However, I thrive off of daily relaxation, discovery, unplanned spontaneity, and learning new things.  I've always asked myself this question because of these things... Am I just lazy??

I don't really think I am.  Just because I don't want to "work" in the traditional sense doesn't mean I don't have things that I want to do.  The things that I actually LOVE doing don't really make much money though .  But does lack of a typical "income" denote a lack of work ethic? (Don't you just love written air quotes?)  According to society, as long as you are getting paid, you are technically working, right?  There are people who get paid to sleep for crying out loud!  What am I doing wrong?

In honor of exploring my options of doing what I love and getting paid for it (the true American dream), I decided to begin writing about my traveling and food experiences!  I dabbled a bit when I wrote my blog about my trip to Columbia recently, and today I will review a lovely dinner party I was invited to last night!

So if you know me, you know I LOVE food.  Where does it all go?  Beats the heck outta me, because I've remained the same size since middle school.  Gift and a curse people, trust me.  Anywho, last night I was very randomly invited to eat at a supper club dinner party by a wonderful lady named Naomi! Naomi is the founder of CENA, which is a monthly dining experience like I have never had before. I didn't really know what to expect, but I received the email containing the location and a sample 5 COURSE Indian cuisine inspired menu (there was no set menu, but she told me that people could send in allergies before hand).  

The invite also said BYOB, (which is basically what I do secretly at every restaurant anyway) but I'm glad it was encouraged.  The venue was a small pottery shop in a Greenpoint neighborhood that use to be a restaurant and record shop.  Very cute!  A lovely, mood setting jazz trio was in the front doing a set of a few cover songs when I got there.  Also there was a cat named Dragon sleeping in a box!

Dragon!


Chef Shuchi!
 One thing I WAS a little leery of was the guests of the dinner party.  I'm not the most social of butterflies, so I was very nervous when I saw the set up of the room.  There were 16 settings at 3 different long tables.  Who the heck was I gonna be sitting next to??  I was gonna have to interact with people I don't know! Ahhh! It turns out, as the guests started to arrive, some people did infact know each other already.  A few did come all alone, like me, but there were all very welcoming and personable.  I suppose if you are coming to a place like this you are probably an open individual anyway.  It was a very communal setting though overall.  The kitchen was completely open for us to see chef Shuchi Mittal (of 29calories.com) preparing the food.  


She came out to introduce each dish, since the menu was practically a secret until the day of.  As the wine flowed, I began to come out of my shell a bit and talk to some of the people, who all loved food just as much as I did.  I guess food really can bring people together.  Usually we think of food as a necessity of life and just scarf down the required daily portions, but it's so much more!  It's an experience! The idea of this kind of dinner party supper club is actually very cool when you think about it.  BUT it is definitely for the adventurous and open minded.  Each month is a different location, chef, and group of people.  The reservations do sell out fast, so you should probably make some in advance.  And yes, I know, it's hard for us random New Yorkers to actually PLAN things so far ahead like that, but it will be worth it when the day finally arrives.  


Beets + Cilantro Raita + Spicy Orange Compote

Fishcake + Green Beans + Pickled Cabbage

Chicken Keema + Pastry + Achaar Aioli

Mix Veg Korma + Chickpeas + Pilaf

Butter Cake + Cardamon Creme + Chikki



New York is full of so many things that I haven't even THOUGHT about trying yet, but I will be here to tell you about each experience I have (so you can know which ones SUCK and which ones are awesome).  This one was absolutely awesome.  I'm not gonna jump off the social deep end just yet, but it really opened me up to the idea of getting to know more people in this town.  

If you live in NYC, go check the website for April's dinner party reservations www.cenanyc.com 

And if you need some food (or a tropical location) reviewed, feel free to invite me for dinner! 

p.s. I use to want to be a professional taste tester when I was a kid (like those people on Iron Chef), but then I thought about all the terrible stuff I'd have to eat too -___-

p.p.s I do remember my first food review job ever though, I was like 12 and this lady in the mall made me watch a video, eat a piece of candy, then answer some questions about what I ate.  I got 20 dollars too!  Man those WERE the days...

Monday, March 23, 2015

Kardashians, Kollege, and Kan't the rent be cheaper??




Hello everyone! Happy Monday! And happy Spring!  Speaking of Spring, where the hell is this warm weather supposed to be?  I'm still freezing my balls off.  I think I need another excursion.  Since I can write from anywhere, my office can technically BE anywhere right?  Home base is always NYC, but gosh darn-it, I need some warmth!  (and I know when the sweltering warmth finally comes, I'll be begging for a cool breeze... oh such is life!)

Anywho, speaking of current events.... I'm not really one for much celebrity gossip, especially the Kardashian kind, but I recently read about the youngest daughter, who isn't even 18, buying a nearly 3 million dollar home.  Now, ofcourse there is some natural innate jealousy, but more prominently, curiosity!  What the heck does this girl even do??  I barely know what the rest of the family does, but how in the world can a 17 year old afford a 3 million dollar house?  I decided to look into it, and basically, they all do a bunch of random everything (and at the same time, random nothing), that I guess somehow adds up to millions of dollars for each of them?  I suppose they get paid for being on the reality show... and then there are endorsements I guess.  Then there are a bunch of other random things you can do like have a clothing line, a make up line, a hair product line, a game on itunes, appearances and hosting, a book deal, and miscellaneous modeling jobs.  But these people aren't basketball players or singers, or anything really!  They just all look extremely decent with lots of makeup, styling and (supposed) non surgical enhancement procedures.  I will give it to them though, they sure knew how to bust wide through that door that Kim's foot wedged open.  I know a few Kardashian lovers who have the never old argument of  "They're making money, and looking fabulous so why are you hating on that?"  Because I really wanna know how it all got to this point America!  The uneven distribution of wealth!

I know I have mentioned a few of my projects that I would like to work on this summer, including my documentaries about American college being ridiculously over priced, as well as NYC rent being ridiculously over priced for current residents, and today, I will discuss a little bit about why I feel the way I do.

Sometimes things in this world just don't make any sense at all, and it seems like everyone just goes with the flow so much that we forget to question and analyze why things are the way they are.  We are raised to go to elementary, middle school, high school, and college.  Everyone tells us college is expensive so we need to save up or get a bull crap scholarship, but nobody tells us why the f*** it's so expensive!  Who does all this money go to?  Also, most "real world" jobs make it so that college degrees are REQUIRED, so if you don't fork over all the doe, you're screwed!  Who invented this system??  But it doesn't end there if you live in NYC... every single year since I've been here, rent has went up tremendously for me personally.  And I hear many horror stories of people who have lived here much longer, and are always in fear of having to move because rent will suddenly increase to an inexplicable amount.   People should not live in fear!  I have been homeless quite a few times, and it is not pretty.  I know the city would just love it if all the people who couldn't afford the ridiculous rent prices would move as far out as possible so that they can charge the NYC hopefuls whatever the highest bidders offer, but come one now, you can't just drive people out of their HOMES.  Especially the ones who have been here for years working for these rich bastards in Manhattan.  At this rate, the lower class will have to be shipped in from 3 or 4 hours away just so you precious Manhattanites can have someone to serve you coffee in the morning!

All of this is truly something that I feel needs to be exposed to the nation.  And I also believe there are things we can tangibly do.  The rich won't like it, but if enough of us poor people get together, we really do out number them.  Hopefully my documentaries will bring so many things to light in order to spread this "wealth" around a bit so everyone can have a better chance at a quality life.  The thing is, I really have to do a lot of research....because if you know me, I HATE being wrong (which I never really am).  I think about everything that I say and write, and make sure I know it to be the absolute TRUTH.  So that is why even in my disgust, I must research to the fullest to know all of the facts.  From both sides.  And that is one of the hardest things, trust me.  If anyone wants to help me research or work on my documentaries with me, please email me!  We should not have to live in a world where a 17 year old who sells nail polish and hair extensions lives in a 3 million dollar house, and families of 8 live in a 1 room basement apartment -______-

Truth!

bretonymcgee@gmail.com

p.s.  I can think of one solution right now that would solve this, (but nobody would ever go for it lol):  Take everyone's money away and give every human a cool million to start off with as a starting point.  Just like in the game of LIFE where they give every player $200 to start.  After that, spend it how you want! But atleast we were all even in the beginning.

p.p.s Don't forget it's tax season!  Have you given a third of your income to the Feds yet? (I'm doing it online right now -____-)

Monday, March 16, 2015

Past, Present, and Presents! 



I just love finding old pictures of myself online!  But it also scares me a little bit because I gotta think about all the stuff I've EVER put online, and the fact that it still might be there! Eh well, you only live once... unless you're a cat.  
Also stumbled upon these lowly picture of me as a college student...

tacky version

girls gone wild version

It's always interesting to see how far I've come in life, but I'm still pretty much the same darn person! I found a note on my facebook page from 2009.  It's a list of "facts about myself", and surprisingly, every single thing I said is still true! 

(this is copied and pasted straight from Facebook)

1. I love csi, cold case and law and order!!
2. When I hiccup, I actually say "hiccup"
3. I can't spell, and I don't have good punctuation
4. I like making people laugh, however, I feel most people won't get my sense of humor, so sometimes I just say nothing.
5.I'm not a hater, I'm a tough critic.
6. I'm not anti social, I'd just rather analyze you than talk to you.
7. My book is in the works (and unlike some other people that say "oh I'm writing a book girl!", I really like already have about 20 chapters) 
8. I don't really have a particular laugh
9. I have every genre of music in my ipod
10. I live like I have money but I actually don't Lol
11. I love Conan O Brien's fine self
12. I have grown to be open minded to almost anything
13. I'd rather someone else be happy than me... I feel like I can handle it better
14. I can solve a rubix cube pretty fast
15. I kinda like drama 
16. When I write for a long time, I wear as band-aid on my middle finger 
17. I almost always correct people when they refer to Native Americans as Indian.
18. My goal is to help as many people in the world as possible. I don't care about being super rich.
19. I use to wanna name my son Ankst Fitzgerald
20. I get irritated a lot
21. Life is beautiful
22. I have a nail fetish
23. There is a plan for me
24. I like saying stuff about me! (I'm sure we all do tho, everyone is so into themselves)

     Also, if you couldn't tell by now, another thing about me is that I LOVE making lists! 

 I have been doing this blog since 2006.  Before I started this blog, I ALWAYS had some sort of journal (no, not a diary!... ok fine, maybe it was a diary).  I've been writing literally ever since I can remember.  One time I had a journal for my prime high school years.  You know the years where you start exploring any and everything?  My sisters had stumbled upon this masterpiece, which I thought was locked btw,  and took it upon themselves to highlight all of the interesting parts...and then proceeded to show my mom!  She questioned me about certain questionable things.  Blah.  I stuck to my guns and stood behind everything I said under my first amendment rights.  I feel like a diary should only be read when shared by the author, ya know?  Anywho, now I just write this blog for all to see.  Not even sure when I started sharing it so publicly.  It use to just be for me to get out secret frustrations and ramblings in my life.  If you ever have the time to go back through the archives of this thing, it gets deep!  I've since tried to make it more user friendly! 
     I love looking back at the past and remembering all of the things that have made me what I am today.  All of the choices that have lead of up to this exact moment.  Wether they were good or bad choices, they were my own, I can't change them, and here I am today because of them.  I use to look back and regret SOOOO many things.  I use to regret where I grew up, my living situation, sometimes my family.  In the moment, it can be tough, I know.  But everything passes people!  Then you look back on it and realize how far you've come.  It's great!  It's also good to see that actually, no matter how much we change and grow...we are still that same person at the core.  Unless ofcourse you just did a complete personality 360.  Which some people do!  A few of our interests may tweek a bit though... like apparently I wanted to be a firefighter when I grew up (according to my big sister).  Maybe I just wanted to help people (or maybe I was a pyromaniac...which makes sense because fire still kinda intrigues me).  It just interesting to look back!
     I recently saw a post on someone's instagram that was....well... it was this...

I just had to laugh at this.  I felt like this too!  Little did I know, these were my golden years, and I was missing them all!  All because I was worried about the future and wether or not I was accomplishing all of my goals.  Even now I feel like that sometimes, I admit!  But I'm sure there is some 60 year old woman somewhere laughing her hiney off at me too!  The present is just that, a present!  A wonderful gift that we have been given today.  We shouldn't be worried so much about what might be, because we are missing what IS.  I sound like such a Buddhist! Anywho, today's blog post is short because it's getting warmer outside and I have to go live in the present for a while!  Keep me updated on your projects everybody!  I need some new adventures to get into....

p.s. I lost my old diary when I had to move from place to place back when I lived in Michigan....man what I wouldn't give to read THAT thing!

p.p.s.   Another present for everyone...free ice cream at Dairy Queen today! You're welcome! (sorry vegans, no ice cream for you.  But Rita's will be giving away Italian ice on the first day of spring....you're welcome!) 






Monday, March 09, 2015

That's Art Boo




      Hello everyone! Daylight savings time was this Saturday, and I swear it always throws people off!  Why can't we just let time be what it is and stop manipulating it?  Time manipulation also makes me think of that one time when I may or may not have had some time altering substance that made it feel like time was moving very very slow.  I set an ice cream bar down on a table, about 30 minutes (it felt like) later, the ice cream still hadn't melted!  Come to find out, less than 5 minutes had passed.  But it seemed like so much had happened!  Also, you know the saying "time flies when you're having fun"?  It really does!  Whenever I'm doing something I love, it's over so soon (the funner it is, the quicker it's over).  Or when I'm running late for something, time seems to be stretched so impeccably thin.  Whenever I'm waiting for something to happen, or waiting for something to be over... forever! It literally takes for-freakin-ever (the more boring something is, the longer it lasts). Time is an illusion people!  When we realize that, things will be a lot less stressful.  
     Also over the weekend, a friend was in NYC from my hometown Michigan.  I never really know where to take people when they are tourists here, but they suggested museums.  Since it was Friday,  I remembered that the MOMA is free on Friday! It's crazy how I haven't been to the MOMA since I moved to NYC.  It takes an out of towner to get me to finally go back.  It's really free every Friday people, if you live in NYC, I suggest you take advantage of the wonderful culture (even though it's SUPER crowded during this time).  




So I'm looking around this place, and it's supposed to be the museum of MODERN art, but they still have a lot of vintage famous Picasso, Monet, Matisse stuff going on up in there.  






I also felt really old when I saw THIS on display...

I still HAVE some of this stuff, and it's on display in a museum -__-

Anywho, amongst all the famous art, there was also an exhibit of super modern art.  Now, ofcourse art is subject-able to all eyes, so I really want to know what everyone thinks about this art in particular:


Yes.  This is art.  That was on display.  In a New York City museum.  For everyone to see. 

 Now....who am I to judge this if someone obviously likes it and is willing to put it on display, right?  
But my question is this, how does a person like this artist convince everyone that this art is one of a kind amazing?  Because, ya know, I kinda feel like I could draw this myself! But there must be something that sets this artist apart.  What was the background story for this?  What was the selling point?  That's what it's REALLY all about people.  Selling our art to the world, whatever kind of art that may be.  There are so many people on this planet trying to do the exact same things we are doing, wether it be art, singing, dancing, acting, modeling...everybody is trying to do these things.  What can we do to convince everyone that OUR art is best?  That is truly the secret of life that I have not quite figured out.  How to make myself a needed household commodity.  Is it all just right place right time?  Is it not what you know, but WHO you know?  I really don't know! I'm sure sometimes you can just straight up work hard and be excellent with real talent.  But there is also a lot of great talent out there doing just that and getting absolutely no where.  I believe the key is to look at consumerism objectively.  What do we as a human race desire? It's kind of a business economy sort of thing when you get down to it.  And yes, just like myself, I know most creatives are anti-business.  I hated my economics class in high school!  However, I think I need to start incorporating some sort of business knowledge into my wayward fairytale land approach.  It can't hurt right?  All the truly successful people in the world also have some sort of business venture associated with their talents.  The best thing to do is learn about it for ourselves.  Hopefully soon I will be able to convince people that my stick figure drawing of the number 23 is worth MILLIONS!



p.s. Seriously though, I took a (depressing looking) selfie in front of a Rothko painting, which is very simplistic in execution, but his stuff sells for literally MILLIONS!





p.p.s.  My brother-in-law, Tony Peters, is actually a VERY good established artist!  He sells art as well, and I get a commission if I refer someone, so go check out his stuff!