Posted by armpitofamerica on December 31, 2010
As 2010 comes to a close, you’ve undoubtedly seen countless websites putting out some kind of “best of 2010” list or the like. Well, here’s another one!
But before getting into that list, let me just tell you some of the things you can expect to see on this little blog in 2011. First of all, I hope to update a little more often than I’ve done this year. I also plan to have some more videos (such as a “Jersey Shore” makeover!) and maybe even some guest bloggers! So be sure to come back often to see what’s going on in the Armpit of America.
Now that that’s out of the way, here are my Top 5 favorite entries I’ve written over the past year.
1) New Jersey’s Ghetto Barber Shops – Join me in my quest to find a decent barber shop. As a bonus, I you’ll see a picture of me with my afro at full force.
2) Top 5 Overplayed Jersey Shore Cover Band Songs – Go to any shore bar over the summer, you’ll likely encounter a cover band. Find out what I think are the most overplayed songs those bands perform.
3) State vs. State: Idaho – Tomatoes vs. potatoes. Springsteen vs. Willis. Find out whether New Jersey or Idaho is the better state. (By the way, I promise to do more of these State vs. State entries in the new year.)
4) The Best of NJ: Adventure Aquarium – Camden New Jersey is known for two things – gang violence and fish. Check out my experience at Camden’s Adventure Aquarium and see if I made it out of the city alive.
5) My Snook-o-Lantern – For Halloween, I made a life-sized model of everyone’s favorite star of “Jersey Shore” out of pumpkins. You can watch my video of the entire process, as I assemble my effigy of Snooki Snook from wig to pumpkin boobs.
Well,l those are my favorite blog posts of 2010. What are yours?
Posted in Top 5 | Tagged: 2010, 2011, Personal, Random, Top 5 | Leave a Comment »
Posted by armpitofamerica on November 12, 2010
That's his name, don't wear it out!
I recently had the pleasure of seeing Mr. Paul Reubens revive his long-gone but never forgotten character of Pee-wee Herman in his new Broadway show. It was spectacular. And although Pee-wee asserted throughout the show that he’s the luckiest boy in the world, I disagree. After seeing Pee-wee Herman live, I think that I’m the luckiest boy in the world.
So what’s the reason for all of this gushing? Well Pee-wee Herman, and his TV show Pee-wee’s Playhouse, was a huge part of my childhood. I learned more from Pee-wee than I ever did from my parents, teachers, and friends. I can fondly remember taking a cue from Pee-wee and putting scotch tape around my nose and ears. I remember starting and giving up on countless foil and rubberband balls. I remember stuffing both feet into one sock and hopping around like Roger, Pee-wee’s one legged, one-eyed alien neighbor. I remember putting pennies over my eyelids and pretending I was Penny of claymation fame. The point is, Pee-wee’s Playhouse was the highlight of my childhood.
So when I heard that Pee-wee was coming to Broadway, I knew I had to go. Now I hate going to New York City. The noise, the smell, the people, the smelly people – I can’t stand any of it. But the chance to see Pee-wee was enough to lure me away from the comfort of the Armpit America, pay the ridiculously expensive New Jersey Transit train fair, jump on an overcrowded and outdated train, and ride through a dark tunnel underneath the Hudson River.
After surviving the treacherous journey to Manhattan, we walked through Times Square (ughhh) to the Steven Sondheim Theater. After getting our seats and looking through the Playbill, I was thrilled to see that Lynne Marie Stewart was reprising her role as the effervescent Miss Yvonne. I was also pleased that John Paragon was back playing Jambi. Unfortunately, Lawrence Fishburne didn’t return to play Cowboy Curtis. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Random, Reviews | Tagged: Broadway, New York, Paul Reubens, Pee Wee Herman, Personal, Random | Leave a Comment »
Posted by armpitofamerica on November 3, 2010
I have a big Halloween surprise for all of you. Let’s just say it involves Snooki and a pumpkin. I’ll try to get it out by the weekend.
But for now, I’ll just talk what I did this past weekend. We had long planned to get a big group together to go to Jenks down in Point Pleasant. Though usually guido central, Jenks is actually pretty fun on Halloween. So, while that was the plan on Saturday, we wanted to stay local and go somewhere in Belmar on Friday.
Though no one else was really dressing up on Friday, I wanted to resurrect a costume I did a couple years ago: a goth/emo/hipster guy, black nail polish and guy-liner included. After getting dressed, I was told that my jeans were too baggy. My wonderful girlfriend then offered up her pants. Miraculously, I managed to fit into them. Though I felt uncomfortable wearing a wig, make-up, and FEMALE JEANS, I think the costume came out pretty good: Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Bars, Belmar | Tagged: Bars, Belmar, cheesesteak, drunk, Food, guidos, Jersey Shore, Personal, snooki | Leave a Comment »
Posted by armpitofamerica on October 22, 2010
Sussex County: Just the tip of the armpit.
A couple weeks ago, I had the pleasure of visiting Sussex County for the first time. Nestled up in the northwest corner, Sussex County is geographically New Jersey’s northernmost county but culturally its southernmost. It is known for its mountains, farmland, small towns, and country folk.
The reason for the trip up north was for a friend’s birthday. Driving up to Sussex County, I couldn’t believe the scenery and almost forgot that I was in New Jersey. The gently rolling hills full of trees seem more typical of Pennsylvania and upstate New York. And the signs advertising not one, but two mining museums made me think I was in West Virginia or Kentucky. But all of the strip malls along the way served to remind me that I was still in the Armpit of America.
Another reminder was the numerous signs talking about this one diner – apparently the best diner in New Jersey. Diners are a dime a dozen in this state and usually fall into one of two categories: perfectly average or not so great. Each one claims to have the best of something, whether pancakes, burgers, or omelets. But for a diner to claim to be the best at everything? I was intrigued – but I’d have to do my investigations another day.
We arrived at the birthday party and were greeted by some of the redneckiest rednecks I’d ever seen. And I mean that in the nicest possible way. Everyone was really nice and friendly, just a little more country than any other people I’ve ever met in New Jersey. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Armpit Adventures | Tagged: driving, Food, Personal, rednecks, Sussex County, trucker beans | 6 Comments »
Posted by armpitofamerica on October 9, 2010
Hahahah never heard that one before....
Back in September of 2001, I was a nerdy, overweight freshman at Rutgers. During that first semester, I took Expository Writing 101 (AKA Ex-Pos), the dreaded freshman writing course. The first assignment for that class was to read an essay about genetically engineered potatoes and write a paper about it. The author of that essay was a certain Michael Pollan, a fact I only remember because I thought how funny it was that a guy named Pollan wrote about plants.
Before the teacher handed back those first assignments, she said most of the class did pretty poorly. She explained how that can be expected on our first papers and that we shouldn’t get too discouraged; we can only get better. When she handed my paper back, I was shocked by my grade. It was a B+. That’s when it happened. It was at this point, dear reader, that your humble narrator realized he could write. Since then, I’ve pursued writing educationally, personally, professionally, and blogally.
So where am I going with all this?
Nine years (holy shit) after that fateful day, I heard that Michael Pollan was giving a talk at Rutgers. I couldn’t pass up the chance to hear the guy who indirectly launched my writing career at the place where it started. So, this past Wednesday, I headed up to the College Ave gym, where the talk was being held. On the way, I passed the Rutgers Student Center. There was a big sign in front of the building saying there was going to be a memorial for Tyler Clementi that night. The sign also said that both New Jersey senators, Frank Lautenberg and Bob Menendez, were going to be there. I thought about ditching Pollan and going to this event for no other reason than the remote chance that I could convince one of the senators to sit down for an in-depth interview for this little old blog. But they clearly had something more important to do that night. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Food, New Brunswick, Personal, Rutgers | Tagged: Food, Grease Trucks, Michael Pollan, New Brunswick, Personal, Rutgers | 1 Comment »