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ImageI’m sick of the media portraying 2013 as a degrading year for women in music. Blurred Lines and Miley Cyrus did not help “the cause” but we seem to have ignored the positive messages that came out of some of this year’s top tunes. Here are just a few of the powerful messages, sung by some very powerful women:

You can be amazing. You can turn a phrase into a weapon. (Sara Bareilles, Brave)

No one can hold me back. I ain’t got time for that. (Kelly Clarkson, Catch My Breath)

You can take my wings but I’m still gonna fly.  (Janelle Monae, Q.U.E.E.N.)

This girl is on fire. (Alicia Keys, Girl on Fire)

Crazy women are made by crazy men. (Brandy Clark, Crazy Women)

We’re bigger than we ever dreamed…Life is great, without a care. (Lorde, Royals)

I am the champion and you’re gonna hear me roar. (Katy Perry, Roar)

No time to quit now. Just time to get it now… you better work. (Britney Spears, Work Bitch)

You’re gonna miss me when I’m gone. (Anna Kendrick, Cups)

You won’t me down on Earth, but I’m up in space… I DON’T CARE. (Icona Pop, I Love It)

And the thing we must never forget:

Anything can happen… (Ellie Goulding, Anything Can Happen)

A life of obscurity is not an option.
- Me


When you’re a kid, you have many dreams. You dream of being a ballerina and an astronaut and a super hero and, maybe, a cat. You and your friends run around the backyard pretending to fighting evil aliens. A box is not just a box — it is really a pirate ship that you sail around the world in. You dream of being the damsel in distress or the knight in shining armor.

Alas, it is all just fantasy. Just the amazing imagination of your 4-year-old self. It isn’t real. We cannot time travel. Superheros do not exist. There are no such thing as wizards or vampires. The average girl cannot become a princess.

If you are like me and you refuse to give up your childhood fantasies, life can be unbearable. Especially at 25, when you still have dreams about being a super hero.

Natalie Portman is a ballerina.
Anna Paquin is a super hero.
Sigorney Weaver fights aliens.
Emma Watson is a wizard.
Anne Hathaway became a princess overnight.
Ashley Greene can live forever.

I do not have to give up on the ideas of my 4-year-old self.

I can do all of things things I wanted to do and be all of the people I wanted to be. I can do all of those things people told me were impossible.

I can be an actor and live as many lives as possible.

“But when the summer days started slowly coming to an end,
I found you turning into nothing more then just a friend.
And now that summer’s over and it turns into the fall
It seems as though I lost you, I don’t mean anything at all.
Yet somehow now I don’t miss a thing;
You were just another summer fling.”

- Unknown

(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction – The Rolling Stones
Eh, Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say) – Lady Gaga
Waka Waka (This Time For Africa) – Shakira
Fear of Wasted Time – Court Yard Younds
Eclipse (All Yours) – Metric
Heavy – Florence + the Machine
I Like It – Enrique Iglesias feat. Pitbull
All I Do is Win – DJ Khaled feat. T-Pain, Ludacris, Snoop Dogg & Rick Ross
Summerboy – Lady Gaga
Surfin’ Bird – The Trashmen
Killer Queen – Queen
I Am the Cosmos – Pete Yorn & Scarlett Johansson
I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For – U2
A Change Woul Do You Good – Sheryl Crow
She Wolf – Shakira
Good Ol’ Fashion Nightmare – Matt & Kim
Little Lion Man – Mumford & Sons
Shots – LMFAO & Lil Jon
Break Stuff – Limp Bizkit
Use Somebody – Kings of Leon
With A Little Help From My Friends – The Beatles
Big Pimp – Jay-Z
Digital Love – Daft Punk
Tequila – The Champs
Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked – Gage the Elephant
So Jersey – The Bouncing Souls
I Love Myself Today – Bif Naked
Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It) – Beyonce
Loser – Beck
Breathe – Anna Nalick
Hunter – Dido
Hey, Soul Sister – Train
I Love This Bar – Toby Keith
Bring on the Wonder – Susan Enan feat. Sarah McLachlan
Lady – Styx

WARNING: Minor spoiler alert

I was so distraught last week, when I read an article about Kellan Lutz giving Kristin Stewart advice about being a vampire. I knew I should not have done it, and that I would be left feeling guilty afterwards, but I could not resist.

I do not feel guitly anymore. I have plenty of other horrible emotions to cope with now.

I have just finished reading Book I of “Breaking Dawn” and I feel like I just caught my (imaginary) husband cheating on me with a man: betrayed, confused and heartbroken.

I have one thing to ask Stephanie Meyer, above everything else: WTF?!

The beginning was lovely — sweet but heartbreaking, just as I expected. But then it morphed into this horrendeous piece of shit.

Be still my aching heart.

What would possess her to write something so fucking ridiculous?

I started Book II, hoping that, because it was about Jacob, it would be better.

WRONG.

Again, the potential was there but, I ended up feeling betrayed… again.

I closed the book after only 150 pages because I felt like I was going to cry. And not the way I cried after finishing “Eclipse,” because these were tears of frustration and disappointment.

I told my mom how I felt I had been cheated. She made me feel better, saying that she, too, had read books that she had been so excited about, only to be let down by the author and a total “WTF?!” moment.  She told me that sometimes, authors go awry, for one reason or another, and we just have to accept it and move on.

I pledged to begin reading “1984” immediately, but talked myself down from that ledge.

I guess I must be a masochist and enjoy pain, because I have every intention of continuing to read tonight.

Maybe, I am just a sad and lonely idiot, so easy to forgive the hurt and the mistakes, and unwilling to let go of something that clearly isn’t right for me anymore.

I am hoping things will have changed and that this slight deviation was caused by mere curiousity and not a need to totally transform from what I had originally gotten into bed with.

I can’t stand anymore heartbreak. I knew this relationship was ending, but I had decided to take it slow and to enjoy it, instead of rushing to its demise. But I did not expect this.

I am not sure if I will recover…

I love being in love with books.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love reading but the feeling of being in love with a book is amazing.

My last passionate fling with pop culture was the “Buffy” series, and that broke my heart in a zillion tiny pices back in 1997.

After 10 long and painful years, the hole in my heart was slowly closing, having been filled with various books, television shows and movies.  My constant feeling of emptiness had almost completely subsided, but then I made the mistake of watching “Twilight” on one particularly boring Sunday afternoon with my Air Force roommate.

I anxiously waited for “New Moon,” and watched it again and again because it brought me 130 minutes of happiness and joy.  I waited and waited (and waited) with anticipation for “Eclipse” to arrive. But the acting was so shiteous, the high was not what I expected.

Like an addict visiting the Methadone clinic, this was helping, but I wanted the good stuff.

I really loved the story line, so I decided to buy the books and, after purchasing the entire hardcover, first edition set for just $50 (thank you, Amazon!), I found myself entraced with every word Stephanie Meyer’s wrote.

About three things I was absolutely positive: First, Spike and Angel had nothing on Edward. Second, there was a part of me–and I didn’t know how dominant that part might be–that thirsted for every page. And third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with the series.

That is why I was able to finish “Twilight” in three nights.  And now, I am aching to continue reading “New Moon.”  It consumes my thoughts during the day.  I have been able to shake the image of Kristen Stewart from my head (thankfully) and have since replaced myself in the role of Bella Swan.

What I have been lacking in the form of a real human relationship, I have found in the pages of these books.

But, just like my previous human relationships, this one is fleeting.  I know the end is coming, though I am not sure exactly when.

Instead of days or weeks or months, this amazing and all-consuming part of my life will end after 2,346 pages.

Knowing that this relationship is finite, I struggle with how quickly to proceed.

I want to spend every waking moment devouring each page, and every moment I am asleep, I hope to dream of it. But, if I read through them at the rate that I am, I will be left sad and alone in just a few short weeks.

My heart tells me to just keep going– to come home every day and read from dinner until I cannot keep my eyes open.  I need it, it tells me. How else can I feel so good? How else will I fill my dreams with such wonderful fantasy?

The worst part is, I truly have no idea what “Breaking Dawn” is about or what happens to Bella, Edward, Jacob and everyone else at the end.  I have thought of many possiblities, and I have a pretty good idea of what will happen, but I keep hoping for a big surprise that leaves me in a daze for days. (If you are wondering what I’m wondering, I am pretty sure Bella ends up a vampire and Jacob dies in some beautiful act of love [and stupidity] while trying to save her. I secretly hope this does not happen and Bella ends up staying human, because I would be insanely jealous of the ‘forever love’ that she and Edward would share.)

My mind tells me I have totally lost it.  It is just a book, well four. (Or five, if you count Meyer’s new novella, but that is a tricky mistress I am not sure I want to get into bed with.) Sure, I feel wonderful now and sure, it helps me fill the time during the week — but it will be over before I know it.

So, with the help of Goodreads (www.goodreads.com), I am already searching for a new relationship.  I am do not know if I will be able to find a perfect replacement, but I hope to find something that will help fill the void after I close the cover of “Breaking Dawn” for the last time.

Is that cheating or just good planning?

I am not even halfway through the series (at this very moment, I am only on page 189 of “New Moon”) and I am already looking. That is just like if I had only been out on date #4 and was already planning who I would be taking out to dinner next month.

I am not giving these books a fair chance.

I could end up completely fullfilled after I finish, having found the true love of my biblio-life and be satisfied to never truly love again.

Or, I could just know that, while this was a great and wonderful love, there will be others who, though they may not fill the void compeltely, will allow me enough happiness to move on and flourish.

Someday, the series will fade into a fond memory that, when my grandchildren ask me about those dusty old black books with strange pictures on the cover, I will say only good things about the torrid, 2,000 page affair.

I recently went back to my semi-natural light hair after almost 2 years of jet black. While my whole family (and most of my friends) enjoy the new “lighter side of Courtney,” I cannot help but miss my dark locks. I am not sure if it was real or imagined, but I always felt this certain air of mystery about myself with black hair. While dark hair has its downsides — light roots made me look like I was balding and forget about wearing all black and not being considered “goth” — it really was my favorite hair color of all (and I have been MANY colors).

Now that I am back to blonde, I feel less, well, attractive. It is as if I blend in now, rather than stand out. This is not to say that all the girls I know are blonde, but that there is nothing “WOW” about my blonde locks. My hair is very much a statement piece for me and I have done everything from pixie to extensions to bleach blonde, fire engine red and jet black. My hair is part of my personality and every time I transform it, my identity seems to transform with it. I had much more confidence with dark hair, but now I seem to have lost it.

I have a friend who totally rocks her blonde — she is extremely attractive, athletic and very out going. She is not ditzy by any means and has this amazing aura about her that is only complimented by her beautiful blonde hair. I could never imagine her with any other shade of hair — not even a darker blonde… her hair color really does fit her. I think maybe that my dark locks fit me more.

I have had a few people (not just my blondes) tell me that blonde is more attractive and that guys totally love blondes. I’m not so sure I agree with that. I quickly thought of 5 current hotties and only of one them is blonde: Angelina Jolie, Eva Mendes, Megan Fox (vom!), Beyonce and Marissa Miller (my fave Angel!). But is that just me? To see if I was right, I went and looked at all of the recent “Hottie” lists to see what the predominant hair color was and, SURPRISE: blondes no longer reign supreme!

Victoria’s Secret named Olivia Wilde “Sexiest Actress” on it’s “What is Sexy?” list. My twin (when I had dark hair), Katy Perry, was named Maxim’s #1 Hottie and, while FHM picked Marissa Miller for its top spot, #2 and #3 were brunettes (Megan Fox and K-Stew, respectively and can I add a VOMIT!?!)

Now, I am in no way hating on blondes. There will forever be iconic blondes: Marilyn, Barbie, Twiggy, Elle Woods… and some of my favorite women are blondes: Heidi, Britney, Blake… and but I am thinking that blondes need to hand over the crown for a little while.

Also, I think I need to make a hair appointment…

(NOTE: And let me also say that this really has nothing to do with a lack of attention from men, it has to do with my own self-confidence and opinion of myself. I felt much more comfortable as a brunette and I was more assertive and more likely to talk to total strangers.  I loved the “exotic” look my dark hair gave me and I played it up.  The last few times I have gone out, I have noticed that I have become this scared little girl again. It needs to change and I really feel that my hair color helps me.)

New article up on BiggerThanMusic.com!!

Song of Summer 2010

What’s YOUR pick??

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