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  1. Taco Bell, Quit Trying To Be Healthy.

    May 11, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    Why do we like Taco Bell?

    I did a Google Image search of Taco Bell in preparation for this post, which worried me at first (who knows what kind of pictures would show up? Taco Bell is the Walmart of what we Americans like to call “Mexican food”). Nothing bad happened, but it did stir up some other questions in me, like, does it really make us think outside the bun or is “the bun” just code for a big, Americanized heap of dirty buildings filled with delicious food?

    20130510-235706.jpg http://plazadelapaz.com/taco-bell/

    Also, what ever happened to the Taco Bell dog? They replace Shamu every time he/she dies, so it couldn’t simply be the death of the Taco Bell dog.

    20130511-000804.jpg http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/unleashed/2009/07/gidget-taco-bell-chihuahua-dog-dies.html

    Why is Taco Bell being such a smart aleck in this article/picture thing? Wasn’t our concern over the disgusting meat legitimate? Wouldn’t you be slightly concerned if you weren’t eating what you thought you were, Taco Bell? And anyway, it’s not like it stopped us from eating there for more than like, maybe two days tops. We came crawling right back through your doors once we realized that even McDonald’s was too expensive for our high school budget.

    20130511-000912.jpg http://www.hellermanbaretz.com/sound-bites/taco-bells-game-changing-litigation-pr-strategy

    Most importantly, where is this perfect looking Taco Bell located? Why can’t my friendly neighborhood Taco Bell look like this? I’m sure this Taco Bell’s entrance doesn’t smell like sewage and broken dreams.

    20130510-235748.jpg http://www.sheknows.com/food-and-recipes/articles/823091/taco-bell-shocker-ground-beef-is-only-35-percent-meat

    But I digress.

    The main reason I’m upset is because Taco Bell conned my poor, vegetarian friend to buy their newish, expensive (in Taco BellLand) Cantina burrito thing, and it was the worst thing that I have ever tried to ingest.

    20130511-002217.jpg http://dudefoods.com/taco-bells-cantina-bell-menu/

    You’re thinking, “but I thought you said your friend bought it!”

    She did, and after her first bite, she looked alarmed. After giving her some recovery time, I asked her how it was, and she said it was the worst thing ever. Naturally, I couldn’t let that go, so I, too, tried the burrito.

    It was Hell carefully contained in a grilled tortilla.
    It was Pandora’s Box, and I took a bite of all of the bad in the world.
    It was as if somebody made Trigonometry, Poetry Explications, Lab Write-Ups, and History Essay Tests that you forgot to study for into flavors and put them all together into one abominable creation.

    If I could undo that single bite, I would, and I don’t know that I’ve ever said that about anything else in my entire life.

    Thanks, Taco Bell.


  2. CAAAAAAAAAAAAAKE.

    May 11, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    Tomorrow is my graduation party, and naturally, I’m looking forward to it. I have high expectations. I won’t be satisfied unless my parents have arranged Robert Downey Jr. to explode out of a cake, announce that he is actually an eighteen or nineteen-year-old boy who has been disguising himself as a forty-something actor, and he has fallen madly in love with me.

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    Pre-edited picture of Robert was found at http://www.hollyscoop.com/robert-downey-jr

    I jest. That will never happen.

    But I’m about to talk about something else, and I’m gonna be dead serious about it.

    Dead.

    Serious.

    My mom has agreed to make me a Charmander cake. I found it on Pinterest, and my life changed forever.

    A Charmander is a little fire-breathing Pokemon, pictured here:

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    Picture of Charmander found at http://fantendo.wikia.com/wiki/Charmander

    This cake will have Charmander on it, breathing fire. AND THE FIRE IS REAL BECAUSE THERE ARE CANDLES ON IT.

    20130510-233909.jpg
    Picture of Charmander cake found on Pinterest. Original source: http://cheezburger.com/4226441472

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    The base layer of frosting will already be done, and that is half the battle. I have high hopes for my cake, even though my mom told me not to.

    HOORAY FOR OPTIMISM.


  3. It’s Plath-TASTIC!

    April 25, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    There is a new love in my life, and her name is…Sylvia. Sylvia Plath has been my newest literary discovery, and she blows me away. Now, my love for her is completely platonic, (and she has been dead since 1963), but she is one of the most fabulous, albeit depressing poets and authors that I have ever read. I finished The Bell Jar just the other day, and now I’m doing an intensive study of her poetry and her life.

    20130425-130612.jpg
    Photo found at http://www.sylviaplath.info/thumbsbooks.html

    For this project, my group is doing a dramatic documentary on her life story, in which I will be playing Sylvia Plath. My friend pointed out that we look a bit alike.

    20130425-130807.jpg
    Photo of Sylvia found at http://www.biography.com/people/sylvia-plath-9442550

    What do you think?

    This pleased me an inordinate amount. I’ve only ever been told that I look like Renee Zellweger in Chicago, and that was when I was coated in stage makeup after my high school’s production of Godspell.

    20130425-130845.jpg
    Photo of Renee found at http://makeup411.com/breakdowns/id/368

    But anyway…

    Sylvia has such a beautiful, distinct way of writing. Her language is so precise and thoughtful, and, while I am no literary scholar, I haven’t come across many poets similar to her. Her poems range anywhere from Lady Lazarus, which is saturated in meaning, to Mushrooms, which, according to my mother, Sylvia herself said in an interview has no hidden meaning at all. It is simply about mushrooms. And yet, each word is pristine.

    Mushrooms

    Overnight, very
    Whitely, discreetly,
    Very quietly

    Our toes, our noses
    Take hold on the loam,
    Acquire the air.

    Nobody sees us,
    Stops us, betrays us;
    The small grains make room.

    Soft fists insist on
    Heaving the needles,
    The leafy bedding,

    Even the paving.
    Our hammers, our rams,
    Earless and eyeless,

    Perfectly voiceless,
    Widen the crannies,
    Shoulder through holes. We

    Diet on water,
    On crumbs of shadow,
    Bland-mannered, asking

    Little or nothing.
    So many of us!
    So many of us!

    We are shelves, we are
    Tables, we are meek,
    We are edible,

    Nudgers and shovers
    In spite of ourselves.
    Our kind multiplies:

    We shall by morning
    Inherit the earth.
    Our foot’s in the door.

    Poem copied from http://thebutterflydiaries.wordpress.com/2009/09/05/sylvia-plaths-mushrooms/

    LOVEIT

    Here is a video of a montage of some of Sylvia’s work. It’s long, but it is completely worth the watch.

    Also, here is a video of Sylvia Plath reading her poem Daddy.

    Aaaaaaaandddd, if you are as obsessed as me, you can even buy a Bell Jar t-shirt HERE.

    I may or may not be Sylvia Plath’s biggest fan.

    20130425-131221.jpg

    And that picture may or may not be edited.


  4. Fun! Fun! Fun! ‘Til Her Daddy Takes the T-Bird Awayheyheyhey…

    April 20, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    It is my strong belief that the world needs to have more fun. We are all constantly on the run to activities that we don’t even like and work work WORK. We rarely have time to enjoy ourselves anymore! I’m guilty of overworking myself all of the time, and while my Senioritis has done some good killing off my Workoholism, there is still some…unwork to do(?). That didn’t make much sense. Hopefully you get my drift.

    I have found that the best way to take a break from work and stress is to keep fun things around. It’s just that simple. I happen to keep a lot of EVERYTHING around, so I have a head start. Some call it hoarding. I call it therapy. I may also be grasping at childhood as I’m slowly forced into adulthood in a last-ditch effort to pull some kind of a Peter Pan trick and never grow up, but we’ll just stick with the first one.

    Most of the things I keep around are silly and simple, but sometimes I’m silly and simple too. They are fun to have around, and so, for the world, I have created…

    THE Gallery of Fun Things to Keep Around Your House that Will Make You a Happier Person!

    20130419-230845.jpg
    Hamburger CD Case!

    20130419-230917.jpg
    Vuvuzela!

    20130419-231002.jpg
    “Jesus Loves You” Windsock for When You’re Feeling Down!

    20130419-231130.jpg
    Funny Glasses that Make You Look Drunk or Really Cool!

    20130419-231320.jpg
    A Single Mystery Balloon

    20130419-231413.jpg
    A Handblown Glass Vase that is Jam-Packed Full of Fun!

    20130419-231456.jpg
    Stuffed Handlebars!

    20130419-231522.jpg
    Plastic Grillz and a Kazoo (#thuglife)

    20130419-231612.jpg
    Masks!!!

    20130419-231654.jpg
    Pile of Business Clothes!

    20130419-231721.jpg
    On Second Thought, Not Really That Fun…

    20130419-231804.jpgb
    Incomplete, Hand-Sewn CATS Costume Inspired by the Hit Broadway Musical CATS

    20130419-231913.jpg
    Grow Your Own Clovers to Love and Cherish

    As you can tell, you can have the time of your life with just a few small objects. Well, at least I can. Maybe there is no method, and this is just madness, but at least I’m having a good time.


  5. Thrift Town, USA

    April 18, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    Thrift stores are magical places. They’re like Narnia, except they’re dingier, less dangerous, and I would imagine they smell a bit worse. Also, there is no Aslan, but there is a faux fur rug in the corner that looks like it’s been to Hell and back. And you’re not a princess. So, what I mean is that it’s not like Narnia at all.

    You can find some neat things there, though. If I’m ever feeling bored with my wardrobe or life in general, the thrift shop is my go to place. I would have better luck there than I would if I went to a mall full of only my favorite stores. It’s kind of comforting to know that skirts that cover more than just the bare minimum and sweaters that are loose-fitting and comfortable still exist. Of course, you can always come across that strip of cloth that could have only been donated by a scarlet woman or Britney Spears in the 90s, but it just shows how well-rounded the selection is. Plus you can get creepy/charming knick-knacks and become a hoarder like me. So many options!

    On my most recent trip to Thrift America, I had the best luck ever. I got all of these things (excluding the Tommy Boy soundtrack and floral picture) for under twenty dollars.
    20130417-233220.jpg

    Close-up time!

    20130417-233318.jpg

    Wall hangings! Exciting

    20130417-233453.jpg

    Records, baybee. A little bit of Strauss, a little bit of the Oak Ridge Boys, a bit o’ the Stones.

    20130417-233602.jpg

    Tommy Boy soundtrack sideways, because the ‘puter won’t cooperate

    20130417-233901.jpg

    The lavender dress. I went full Little House on the Prarie for those photos.

    20130417-234057.jpg

    My blue dress that makes me look like I’m half my age…that is, nine years old, and a smiling owl, because I had a space left and that’s how happy the dress makes me.

    Anyway…

    When you have expensive taste like me, you have to look for the next best thing in regards to what you like in most cases…or you can go to the nearest Goodwill and find a Christian Dior dress for four dollars (which your father will promptly put through both the washer AND dryer, causing the outside to shrink and become too short to wear anywhere decent) or an Evan Picone suit jacket for seven dollars that will serve you well in your business ventures or at a season of speech meets.

    (The hairbrush is to show just how short the dress is. TWO HAIRBRUSHES LONG. RIDIC.)

    20130417-234627.jpg

    20130417-234715.jpg

    Finds like these are great. They make me feel ALIVE. But the best are the vintage finds, ’cause [dang], they don’t make ’em like THIS anymore:

    20130417-234819.jpg

    20130417-234840.jpg

    20130417-234848.jpg

    20130417-234900.jpg

    I love them. All of them.

    I also feel the need to do a bit of app promotion (free of charge, might I add). I take all of these TOTALLY AWESOME full-length pictures of myself (please note the caps and italics for the sake of sarcasm) using this app called Self Timer HD.
    It has not failed me yet, though I suppose there is still time for disappointment.

    20130417-234955.jpg

    I make the EQUALLY AWESOME photo smash-up things with another app called Pic Stitch.
    It can be a bit crash-y sometimes, but it gets the job done.

    20130417-235106.jpg

    HOORAY. Promo is over.

    Here are some other pictures of things I have gotten from second-hand stores in the past for you to view or not to view. (That IS the statement.)

    20130417-235225.jpg

    A French horn! Who’d a thunk it? (Yes, you can make noise on it. I tried as soon as I could.)

    20130417-235409.jpg

    Wall hangings. Exciting

    20130417-235519.jpg

    A nifty box and 48-cent Jesus! (I didn’t put a price on him. The thrift store did.)

    Aaaaaaand there is a bunch of other stuff that I have but didn’t take pictures of.

    Oooh, bonus! Here’s a picture of me with noodle arms. Weird.

    20130417-235709.jpg

    Tah tah for now, meine Lieblings.


  6. CAT. SCRATCH. FEE-VAH!

    April 5, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    What is today?

    Caturday.

    What is tomorrow?

    Caturday.

    And the next?

    Caturday.

    Today, I picked out an outfit solely based on if it went with my cat earrings. They’re vintage, and came straight from my great-grandmama’s box of unwanted jewelry. Swell. They’re quite the pain to get in, and I may or may not have infected myself with tetanus in the process, but it’s totally worth it, right? And there’s a vaccine for that, right? Right…? Anyone?

    20130405-165710.jpg

    20130405-165732.jpg

    They go really well with the French horn mouthpiece ring imprinted on my lips.

    20130405-165821.jpg

    Cats are absolutely everywhere. I don’t just mean in the sad, feral, rabies-spreading, Sarah-McLachlan-singing way. They’re, like, toootally trending, and while I’m not always one to follow the herd, (though I don’t claim to be a trendsetter or a hipster in any regard) I adore this.

    I was shopping at Forever 21 just the other day, and there was cat swag left and right. And now I’m punching myself in the teeth repetitively for saying “cat swag”, but it is true. Everywhere I looked, there was something with a feline on it. I nearly melted with joy. Instead, I opted to buy this dress.

    20130405-170831.jpg

    In the same day, I bought a cat ear ring at Charlotte Russe. I may be slightly obsessed, but my obsession could be over something much worse, like Justin Bieber or voodoo magic.

    20130405-170959.jpg

    This is a trend that I like for both genders and every type of person. You, too, can be funky feline freshhhh.


  7. Someday, I’ll Be A Pokémon Master

    April 5, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    For my eighteenth birthday, I received a GameBoy Advance. Now, I don’t know what you normal kids got for your eighteenth birthday, but I doubt it was as cool as that. I also got the movie Amadeus and a French horn mouthpiece, but we can’t be immature all of the time, now can we?

    From freshman year until now, I have been far too “good” to publicly play a handheld gaming device. I’ve always had that pull in the back of my head to go and “catch ’em all!” even though I didn’t have the proper cables or Pokémon-wielding friends to successfully complete my Pokédex, but I suppressed it in want of that thing that people call a “social life.” All inhibition is now gone. I just dropped ten bucks on a Final Fantasy game, and I’m going to get my money’s worth, dang it.

    20130404-205505.jpg

    I’m not a particularly exciting person. I practice my French horn a lot (hence the aforementioned mouthpiece), a majority of my friendships have been made through Speech Team or arranged by one of my more gregarious friends, and if parties consist of more than ten people my age, I am generally uncomfortable. For prom this year, my group went to Joe’s Crab Shack and then went to the mall to get ice cream and pictures with the Easter bunny. We’re a tame lot, but we have our fun.

    I don’t know what the social norms for college are, but it seems to me that everyone has a niche. I’ve already met the horn section from the college that I am going to attend, and they seem pretty nice. There has to be at least one kid in there that will trade Pokémon with me.


  8. A Basically Pointless Food Tangent

    April 4, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    I haven’t written at all about food, which is strange, as that is about the only thing I think about. Well, food, and the fact that I won’t be able to make weird screeching noises at people in the hallways in college. But mostly food.

    One thing that bothers me about the food in the United States, other than the fact that it is usually off-the-charts unhealthy, is that none of the ethnic foods we eat are authentic. We’ve Americanized everything so much that there are only hints of the original flavors left, or so I’ve heard. I would act like an expert on the issue, but I’m not sure that Taco Bell, Little Caesar’s, and Hy-Vee Chinese count as “real life cultural experiences.”

    I have been to Europe, specifically Germany, Switzerland, and the Czech Republic, and the food tasted pretty much like ours, except for the Czech Republic’s food. In Germany we were mostly fed sausage, much to my displeasure. In Switzerland, I ate chocolate and soup, which were both delicious. I’m sure that we ate other things too, but the chocolate and soup were so good that I guess they wiped my memory of anything else. In the Czech Republic, all I remember eating was gross stuff. I feel that the reason I disliked it so much was because it was the farthest thing from American cuisine that I experienced, plus the water made you vomit if you drank it and I flooded my bathroom with my shower, along with a few other unfortunate events that I may write on later.

    My point is, I may have been determined to dislike the Czech Republic, but I don’t think that is all. I fear that the overly flavorful and unrealistic foods that I have grown up on have given me impossible expectations for what is actually waiting for me outside of the United States. I wish that there were more opportunities to eat authentic cuisine close by. I believe it is time for me to start exploring.


  9. How To Properly Rock Your Crocs

    April 2, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    I have a friend who loves Crocs. That’s right. Crocs. I suppose someone has to. She wears them to school, to the mall, to other public places, and yet she has not been checked into a locker or punched in the face. Why?

    This question rattled through my head for a bit. I admit that I was against her purchase of the flubbery, aerated things. Why would one spend over forty dollars on an ugly, albeit comfy pair of shoes? Because she could. And surely enough, my disappointment turned to admiration, and my confusion turned to clarity. She was rocking the Crocs because she decided to rock the Crocs. Had she been awkward and ashamed, the shoes would have been as unpleasant as heaps of rubbery, purple excrement stuck to her feet, but she walked as if the Crocs were crafted for a monarch.

    20130401-224151.jpg

    As I pondered the situation, I realized that I had been observing people much like my friend my whole life. I thought of the kid who proudly wore his high-waters through the hallways as if he knew that a flood was a-comin’, and he was gonna be the only one with dry pant bottoms. Another made it very clear that his wardrobe staple was Hawaiian shirts, with which he made every day a luau. I knew of girls who smugly wore Chucks to middle school dances, proving that they were far too cool to care if their shoes matched the formality of the event. I had never questioned them before. They just…coexisted. They didn’t blend, and yet they didn’t clash.

    This, I’ve found, is truly the key to being happy with your appearance. If you enjoy jackets with heavy, eighties-style shoulder pads or furry, Russian-style winter hats, then enjoy them fully, without any doubt. If you enjoy a combination of the two, you will most likely be very warm, and should remain well-hydrated. Do what you want to do, live how you want to live, and dress how you want to dress. Life is far too short to wear boring things, and, in the words of Yves Saint Laurent, “dressing is a way of life.” You should make it a good one.


  10. !!!UPDATE!!!

    March 28, 2013 by Xiola Koile

    This blog is new(er than it already was) and definitely improved. It used to be called “FashionPassion Blog” because I am lame and couldn’t think of anything good. And there was one, half-hearted post, because I can not simply write about fashion. But there is so much more to Xiola. She is a multi-faceted creature. In addition to fashion, she loves food and FUN, so naturally, it is now called “My Favorite F Words”. What else?

    Now back to first person. I will be updating soon. Please visit again soon.

    kay.

    thnx.

    bai.


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