New York gets Naked (3) tomorrow.

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Urban Decay, the cosmetic geniuses that created the very wearable neutral eyeshadow palette that spawned dozens of copycats, is giving away trios (threesomes, if you will) of the new Naked 3 palette, a very girly blush and brown collection of shades. You’ll have to be resourceful and use your noggin (after all, what is beauty without brains?) to figure out the clues they’ll be posting on their Instagram account. To the winner goes the spoils. For full rules, you can visit their page here: http://www.urbandecay.com/instagram-contest-terms-and-conditions/landingpage_instagram.html

Happy hunting!

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Don’t Despair: Yeah Yeah Yeahs make landmark video

Leave it to the dead cooler than cool musical trio, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, to make history as the first band ever to film a music video atop the Empire State Building.

As compelling a muse as Karen O is, the iconic building and glimmering skyline steal the show, particularly in the last minute, which features a breathtaking view of the sun rising over the city that never sleeps as Karen sings, “Through the darkness and the light, some sun has got to rise.”  While the title of the song may lead you to believe otherwise, the video for “Despair” is hopeful and joyous, and the combination of the lyrics and the panorama of Manhattan at dawn brought a lump to my throat.

Karen O said:

“It’s a song about overcoming despair, acknowledging that it’s always going to be there, making room for it… Unhappiness is just another form of happiness, is what I read in a book recently. It’s a pretty appropriate song to be singing into the wind up there.”

I wholeheartedly agree.

http://iamkoream.com/yeah-yeah-yeahs-first-band-to-rock-empire-state-building-in-new-music-video/

Someone kick me, I must be dreaming: Glory 9 comes to NYC

I’ve been like a kid on Christmas morning all day today. I’m going to the Glory 9 New York event at the Hammerstein Ballroom, which not only brings some of kickboxing’s most elite talent from all over the world to our fair city for the first time, but also promises one of the biggest payouts in the U.S. to date to the fighters. While other combat sports like boxing casually boast big dollar purses pretty frequently, it’s way less common for fighters in kickboxing to get paid their dues, and this event will pay a $200,000 grand prize to the champion of the 8 Man Light Heavyweight tournament.

As if that weren’t enough of a big deal, the tournament card reads like a who’s who of kickboxing, but any of the undercard fights would be a main event on their own. There’s been a ton of buzz surrounding Tyrone “King of the Ring” Spong, but I am most excited to see Daniel Ghita smash some legs with his savage low kicks. I was lucky enough to meet him at the open workout earlier this week and had a complete fangirl meltdown which I was only somewhat successful at hiding because I was too starstruck to do anything other than stand and stare. I told my boyfriend that if I ever left him for Ghita, good luck getting me back from him – this is a man who was a bodyguard for the Romanian president. He fights for FUN.

The fights will be available to stream at the GLORY website here, and I just heard that CBS Sports will also televise it afterwards, so no one has any excuses for missing this historical event.

I’m not mystical in any sense of the word, but I have to admit I do sometimes get tingly frissons of delight at certain coincidental cosmic alignments in my universe.  These might include nabbing the perfect parking spot, the introduction of seasonal coffee and frozen yogurt flavors, and most recently learning that Sarah Neufeld, violinist for one of my favorite bands, the Arcade Fire, is releasing a solo album this August and has a thriving yoga studio right here in New York.  Win, win, win.

I’m a recent convert to the joys of yoga, and to be perfectly honest, was pretty much dragged there more by a laundry list of aches including bad knees, lower back pain, and general soreness due to my other physical pasatiempos like Muay Thai, BJJ, and running, rather than any desire for enlightenment or peace. I tried it before and hated chanting, hated the noisy breathing, and hated being left alone with my thoughts. That was my twenties. Now that I’m slightly older and wiser (only slightly on both counts, but boy, what a difference a few well placed years make), I appreciate the Time Out a lot more, even though I’m not giving up on eating animals or switching over to an entirely organic cotton wardrobe any time soon. Basically, I need calmness and to practice mindfulness more now, and apparently so do a lot of other stressed out, button mashing New Yorkers at my yoga studio, if the constantly broken buzzer is any indication (we need serenity NOW!). However, perhaps the ultimate goal we can hope to achieve is to acknowledge that life in this city is crazy, and “you still get stressed out, but you don’t get as wrapped up in your own reactions,” as Sarah says in her interview.

Check out the rest of the excellent profile about Sarah at The Aesthete here and if you’re in NYC, you can try getting a little meditative stretch in at Moksha.

Happy Solstice!

Sarah Neufeld: Yogi and Arcade Fire violinist gives us a solo album and a little serenity in NYC

Will Love Tear You Apart?

Still feeling tore up about this weekend’s Game of Thrones shocking Red Wedding and feel like prolonging the agony?  Check out the hauntingly conceptualized game inspired by Joy Division’s “Love Will Tear Us Apart” and wallow. I do recommend that you play the game in full screen and with headphones on as the entry page suggests. Much more atmospheric.

I have to admit I have played this game several times now and I have no idea whether you can win.  Oh, hey, Gordon Calleja, I see what you did there!

My number is 24. What’s yours?

Allure’s round-up of 50 Try Before You Die* beauty products.

*Cannot lie:  I will most likely die before I try any products on this list with the word ‘tan’ in it.

Also, Fresh Brown Sugar Body Polish – expensive, but so worth it based on this Sephora.com review alone:

“My boyfriend rubbed this on his body and went on a walk. It attracted many animals. We were happy with the results.”

Now on to the products!
CHANEL NO. 5 EAU DE TOILETTE
L’ORÉAL PARIS ELNETT SATIN HAIRSPRAY
LA MER CRÈME DE LA MER
NARS BLUSH IN ORGASM
DOVE WHITE BEAUTY BAR
AQUAPHOR ADVANCED THERAPY HEALING OINTMENT

CREST 3D WHITE PROFESSIONAL EFFECTS WHITESTRIPS
YVES SAINT LAURENT TOUCHE ÉCLAT
CHANEL LE VERNIS IN BLACK SATIN
BEACHWAVER BY SARAH POTEMPA
CLINIQUE DRAMATICALLY DIFFERENT MOISTURIZING LOTION
M.A.C. LIPSTICK IN RUSSIAN RED
BEAUTYBLENDER SPONGE
BONNE BELL LIP SMACKERS
CLARISONIC CLASSIC SONIC SKIN CLEANSING SYSTEM
DR. DENNIS GROSS SKINCARE ALPHA BETA GLOW PADS
ELIZABETH ARDEN EIGHT HOUR CREAM SKIN PROTECTANT
MAYBELLINE DREAM BOUNCY BLUSH
CLINIQUE ALMOST LIPSTICK IN BLACK HONEY
MASON PEARSON HAIR BRUSH
DIOR DIORSHOW BUILDABLE VOLUME MASCARA
GUERLAIN METEORITES PEARLS
NARS LIPSTICK IN SCHIAP
SHU UEMURA FALSE LASHES IN FARFALLINA
BY TERRY BAUME DE ROSE SPF 15
URBAN DECAY NAKED PALETTE
GIORGIO ARMANI LUMINOUS SILK FOUNDATION
KEVYN AUCOIN THE EYELASH CURLER
CND SHELLAC
OPI NAIL LACQUER IN LINCOLN PARK AFTER DARK
SK-II SIGNS EYE MASK
CLINIQUE 7 DAY SCRUB CREAM RINSE-OFF FORMULA
RODIN OLIO LUSSO LUXURY FACE OIL
SCOTT BARNES BODY BLING
KIEHL’S CREME DE CORPS
FRESH BROWN SUGAR BODY POLISH
FRACAS FRAGRANCE BY ROBERT PIGUET
TIGI BED HEAD SUPERSTAR QUEEN FOR A DAY THICKENING SPRAY
JOUER LUMINIZING MOISTURIZE TINT
TWEEZERMAN SLANT TWEEZER
AVEENO ULTRA-CALMING FOAMING CLEANSER
SALLY HANSEN SALON EFFECTS REAL NAIL POLISH STRIPS
CHANEL LE CRAYON SOURCILS PRECISION BROW DEFINER
ELURE ADVANCED SKIN LIGHTENING LOTION
OLAY COMPLETE ALL DAY UV MOISTURIZER SPF 15 NORMAL
ST. TROPEZ SELF TAN BRONZING MOUSSE
REVLON SUPER LUSTROUS LIPSTICK IN BLACK CHERRY
NEUTROGENA HEALTHY SKIN ANTI-WRINKLE CREAM SPF 15
LAURA MERCIER SECRET CAMOUFLAGE
NARS THE MULTIPLE IN COPACABANA

Through the Looking (Google) Glass

As titillating as technological innovation is, I’m a person who believes in a little resistance to progress.  I still use a Blackberry rather than an iPhone, I brew my coffee in a French Press rather than using any kind of cup or pod device, and it makes me insane when people view entire music concerts through their phones.  That’s why reading Mark Willis’s thoughts about the new Google Glass product struck a chord with me.

I hope that certain social rules surrounding the public use of other forms of technology (i.e. don’t be that asshole speaking too loudly on the phone on the bus, you deserve to be smacked if you’re texting while walking, and hey, it’s rude to check your phone on a date) will extend to Glass and that people will be kind enough to use a little common sense and courtesy as the technology develops. Unfortunately, there’s no accounting for what creeps will do.

Of course, I admit that I might just be paranoid, and this is probably because I’m a little old fashioned (see first paragraph); I also never fully jumped on the reality television bandwagon. I want my productions to feel a little like productions, and not stolen moments of other people’s lives.

Agree or disagree? What do you think is the ultimate appeal of a product like Google Glass?

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