Burning Question #15: Dinosaur Daze

Tiny tots of either sex
Adore Tyrannosaurus Rex
Indeed, all little ones adore
Any savage carnivore
Of which, O Rex, though rightly boastest
Thou art not only first, but mostest.

~ Ogden Nash

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On Valentine’s Day 2001 I spent one the most romantic days of my entire life with my husband at a Russian Dinosaur Exhibition in Old Sacramento. The babies were in daycare so it was, just us, holding hands, and walking through avenues of the most amazing wondrous and strange collection of bones we’d ever seen. They were millions and millions of years old, from a time on Earth we can barely imagine. On a weekday afternoon not many others were there. It our own romantic get-a-way. Damn, it was seriously romantic. We might be Vampires but that doesn’t mean the only thing we do in our spare time is frighten the crap out of people, or drain the blood out of everyone we know. Vampires know how to do romance, yes indeed we do. Anyway, back to dinosaurs…

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Every kid loves dinosaurs. I don’t know an adult who doesn’t love dinosaurs. We love Jurassic Park. We love Sue at the Field Museum in Chicago. We love Barney… ok we don’t all love Barney, but you get the point. When my daughter was a tiny tot her favorite stuffed animal was flying dinosaur that she called Terridackel. How cute is that. And yes, she still has Terridackel.

So what happened to these amazing huge beasts who once walked our planet before us?

Many scientists believe that the dinosaurs were wiped out by a massive asteroid that collided with Earth 65 million years ago, devastating the planet and wiping out 99% of all species. I think it was supposed to be where the Gulf of Mexico is right now but don’t quote me on it. And no, I doubt if anyone was in New Orleans or Key West at the time drinking Hurricanes (see recipe below) and watching it all. That said, evidence has been found to challenge the giant asteroid theory. Some Paleontologists claim to have unearthed dinosaur fossils in layers of soil that were formed around 66 million years ago, after the supposed meteor strike. Sounds good to me, but then again what do I know? I know that this is a BURNING QUESTION.

Burning Question #15: Were dinosaurs were wiped out by a massive asteroid or was it something else?

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Now that you’ve had major brain drain over dinosaurs and their fate it is cocktail time.

Hurricane

  • 1 part dark rum
  • 1 part light rum
  • 1/2 part lime juice
  • 1 part passion fruit or pineapple juice or nector
  • Garnish with whatever fruit you like (no olives or cocktail onions – use FRUIT)
  • Serve over loads of ice.

Yes, I posted it this way so you could make as much or as little Hurricane magic as you like depending on when you want to fall down on the floor. And remember – don’t drink and drive, or drink and use chainsaws. 

Thank you for stopping by for Burning Question #15. We have 35 Burning Questions to go. I’ll see you next Saturday for #16.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman and Dinosaur Expert.

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Hey look, I’ve got feathers! How cool is that?

 

 

2018 AGT and Cocktails. Summer is here!

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Summer is here and that means the Vampires gather in front of the big screen TV and watch America’s Got Talent. It also means we drink cocktails and I record all of the comments from the Peanut Gallery.

This well worn tradition of blogging about the show started in the summer of 2012. We’ve been watching it since 2008 when my daughter and I discovered it one night while we were on the road for the artistic roller skating regional championships. We were hooked. We still haven’t hooked my husband Teddy but that’s ok because he drinks, makes rude comments and makes cocktails for the rest of us.

So without any more boring history let’s get on with the show. Right now the show is in the audition stage. Two acts have already received the Golden Buzzer. That means they can go on without a second try-out. One was one of those dance troupes with a zillion kids being thrown into the air and twisted around like so many cute pretzels. Teddy thinks the man who run these groups have latent tendencies towards pedophilia. Hey, I’m just writing down what I hear. I’m not overly fond of those groups either.

The SECOND Golden Buzzer, which was pressed by Simon himself was for Michael Ketterer a pediatric mental health nurse who is also the father of six children. He and his wife had two girls, then they adopted four boys. Michael’s story was that he wanted to show his kids that they could dream big. He also showed everyone that he not only has a big heart but a soulful big voice.

For the first two auditions there weren’t very many acts that stood out. Oh, except the CATS. There were CATS that did tricks. Big fluffy house cats that did amazing tricks! We loved those cats. See the link to the cats at the end of this post.

So last night we watched auditions #3. Yes, we record everything so we can fast forward thought commercials and stuff we get bored with.

My husband, kids, brother Val, Grandmama Lola, and a few friends were over. I was going to give the usual warning about snarky rude comments and bad language but there wasn’t any. By far round three was the best so far. Alright I take that back. We fast forwarded through a large block of dancers (Clara said they copied their moves from YouTube videos.) Most of the dance groups are on the level or below the level of most high school or middle school dance groups. Just an observation. We also fast forwarded the circus acts and the weird techno acts because they are BORING.

But this is what we liked:

This precious 13 year old just might end up being the 2018 Winner (if the cats don’t get it)

I usually don’t like “Quick Change” acts but this is an exception. These two put on a great show, and they were adorable.

And finally… OMG this guy was brilliant and funny and weird. We loved it. And no, he isn’t really German.

Teddy said that the AGT folks should just give the cat act from the first audition group a million dollars just because they’re a CAT ACT.  This is seriously fun.

AND NOW IT IS TIME FOR COCKTAILS!

Summer Chai Chai Cocktail

Last night Teddy fixed something different.

  • 4 ounces cold Chai Tea. Use unsweetened tea bags and either brew it and chill it, or make sun tea. Make it strong. 1 bag for each cup.
  • 3/4 ounce passion fruit puree or juice. You can also use pineapple, or any other tropical fruit depending on what you like.
  • 1 ounce blood (leave out if you’re not a Vampire)
  • 1/2 ounce sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 ounce balsamic vinegar

Mix this all together and pour over a glass full of crushed ice. Garnish with mint if you have it on hand.

So have fun, drink responsibly, sing a song, smile, hug your kids, and enjoy the summer. I’ll see you next week for more AGT fun and cocktails.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

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A Vampire’s Guide to Cold Weather Cocktails

Vampire Cocktail Guide with Juliette and Teddy

 

A Vampire’s Guide to Cold Weather Cocktails

Cocktails are in order.

From time to time, especially on weekends my husband Teddy likes to make cocktails – lovely mixed drinks for adults.

Vampire Coffee

The Irish Cream is a splurge – leave it out if you are concerned with extra sugar (as many Vampires are)

  • 1 (1.5 fluid ounce) jigger Irish cream liqueur (try the hazelnut flavored)
  • 1 (1.5 fluid ounce) jigger Irish whiskey
  • 1 (1.5 fluid ounce) jigger Blood
  • 1 cup hot brewed coffee
  • 1 tablespoon whipped cream (we prefer unsweetened)
  • 1 dash ground nutmeg

Note: if you are not a Vampire leave out the blood.

Mix together in large mug. Serve hot. One serving.

Vampire Hot Tropics

  • 1 fluid ounce dark rum
  • 1 fluid ounce coffee flavored liqueur
  • 8 fluid ounces hot coffee
  • 1/2 fluid ounce blood
  • ½ fluid ounce half/half
  • 1 maraschino cherry

Note: If you aren’t a Vampire leave out the blood.

Mix together in large mug. Serve hot. One serving.

Hot Teddy

  • 2 fluid ounces boiling water
  • 1 1/2 fluid ounces whiskey
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 slice lemon
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg
  • A teaspoon of honey to taste

Mix all together in mug. Serve hot. One serving.

Vampire City Cocktail

  • 1 fluid ounce sweet vermouth
  • 3 fluid ounces bourbon whiskey
  • 2 fluid ounces blood
  • 2 dashes bitters
  • 2 maraschino cherries

Note: Leave out the blood if you aren’t a Vampire.

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Pour in the sweet vermouth and whiskey and splash on 2 dashes of bitters. Shake while counting to 30. Pour into 2 cocktail glasses, garnish each with a cherry and serve immediately

 

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Note: I’ve consumed alcohol for my entire adult life. Now, as a parent, I consume less of it but what I do consume is better and a lot more fun.

If you’re going to drink…of course (I have to add this because I claim to be a parenting blogger) tell your kids about alcohol. In fact I have a 16 year old Vampire child who is grounded for life (or at least until February) for not being responsible and under aged drinking. It happened once and will not happen again (not to mention the headache that lasted for 2 days).  If it happens again he will be grounded until he is 30.

When my kids turn 21 I will take them out wine tasting and teach them the difference between drinking to enjoy the experience and drinking simply to get drunk. They don’t call it being shit faced for nothing –  a crude but true analogy.

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

AGT and Cocktails – The 2017 Voting Starts (and Vampires)

(Peviously recorded – the winners of this round are listed after all act descriptions.)

In the summer of 2017 I started posting about AGT, sharing the comments of the peanut gallery of friends and family, and telling you what cocktails Teddy was making for the night.

Last night was the first night of votes for the 2017 season. Tonight we’ll find out what the first batch of talented folks going in for the finals will be.

So here is a run down of who performed, and what was said. This gets pretty brutal. Vampires are not an easy crowd.

Christian Guardino 

This kid is only 17 and I gotta admit has a huge voice. Last night my family was not part of his fan base. The peanut gallery gave the following comments:

He’s not that good.

Like Catsup and Ice Cream, but the judges will rave about him.

The judges did rave about him but I don’t think he is that great.

Yes, the judges ate him up.

Our vote: NO

Artion and Page (Dancers)

This eight and ten year old pair is so full of energy and sooooo cute. I have no idea why I like them. I usually don’t like kid dancers. Maybe that was after years of a certain dance school exploiting and sexualizing their hoochie dancing baby salsa stars. Ugh. BUT this isn’t the case this year. These kids are absolutely genuine and precious. They are just funny. Their facial expressions are hilarious and joyful and real. And these kids can move – but they move like kids. They just fun. Puppy and kitten cute. By the way, they danced to Footloose.

Our vote: Yes (except Teddy who doesn’t like any of the dancers)

In the Stairwell

This group is made up of a group of fine young men who attend the United States Air Force Academy. They are all great singers, good looking, and just darned cute (suck it up Vlad, you’re not the only one.) I love them. One Tuesday they sang the Fun song “Some Nights. Even Simon stood up to cheery. They are fine indeed.

Our Vote: YES YES YES

Singing Trump

This is a guy who is in his 50’s, obviously a professional performer, and entertaining. Unfortunately he was off on Tuesday, with a bad choice of songs. He did “Shut Up and Dance,” which was weird and confusing done by “Trump.” Then he switched to M.C. Hammer’s “Can’t Touch This.” A sad fail indeed. Yes, the man will never get my vote.

Comments from the peanut gallery: He’s not fat enough to be trump. Whoever he is the man is a professional. Tremendous, greatly, and very very bad tonight.

Our Vote: No

Angelica Hale

A nine year old girl with big pipes. We like her. She is cute with a mature sounding voice. She can really sing.

Our Vote: Yes

Bello Nock

This guy is a classic circus clown in the old time Barnum and Bailey tradition. He does dare devil stuff. He is good at what he does. He makes it look fun. Alas, he didn’t grab any of us enough to get our vote.

Our Vote: No

Just Jerk

When I saw the name I thought of Jamaican cooking. No such luck.

This is yet another group of teenage boys (with a couple of token girls) who dance as good as an average high school drill team. Ho hum. Boring music. Boring Dancing. I don’t know why they were even chosen in the first place. This is where the formula aspect of the show comes in – they need people in every group (singers, dancers, teens, adults, kids, dare devils, etc.)

Our Vote: NO

Puddles Pity Party

This guy is a talented mature singer dressed like a sad turn of the 20th century clown. 

Comments from the peanut gallery:

Fast forward. NOW.

Simon should come out and beat him to death.

This is bull shit.

The song is horrible enough and even worse when he sings it.

Simon gave him an X.

Our Vote: No

Preacher Lawson

Comedian

We love this guy. OMG he is funny. He is a shooting star. Love love love! Look him up on YouTube. Preacher Lawson.

Our Vote: YES

 

Yoli Mayor

No good comments from the peanut gallery EXCEPT that she looked great and had a wonderful dress on that was super flattering. It was a bad song to start with and she can’t even sing it. I don’t know why the judges (Simon) are so intrigued by her. She is a lovely young woman, but not the million dollar act.

Our Vote: No

 

Trashy Roller Skaters

We’re a skating family. My daughter is a US National Roller Sports Champion. We DO NOT like this act. This brother and sister pair CAN skate. They have expensive boots and plates. They know what they are doing, BUT they are so trashy. She dresses slutty. He usually has his shirt off. They were spinning around and his head is right in his sister’s whoo haw.

Comments from the peanut gallery: All they do is spend. People are doing this in Vegas (naked.) All they do is spin. All they do is spin. All they do is spin. This would be a good 90 second opening for another act. If she wasn’t hot it wouldn’t work.

Our Vote: No

 

Darcy Lynne

This young ventriloquist could win it all. I can’t even describe how good she is (so here is a video.)

She is amazing. She sings better than 99% of the singers. She keeps in character with her characters. She has amazing stage presence. She’s a winner.

Our Vote: YES YES YES YES YES YES

And the acts that went through to the finals are:

In the Stairwell

Darcy Lynne

Angelica Hale

Preacher Lawson

Trashy Roller Skaters

And two acts saved with some Dunkin Donuts weird vote thing were:

Yoli Mayor

Christian Guardino

 

While we’re all watching this silly show my husband Teddy is making cocktails.

Forget the fruit and the fluff.

We’re going for the hard stuff.

 

That’s No Bull Shot

  • 2 ounces vodka
  • 2 oz blood
  • 1/4 fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2-cup of cold beef concentrate
  • 2-6 dashes of Tabasco or other hot sauce to taste
  • A dash of ground pepper
  • A dash of cayenne pepper
  • A dash of kosher salt

Instructions:

Shake all ingredients in a shaker with liberal amounts of ice. Garnish with a slice of lemon.

Note: If you’re not a Vampire leave out the blood.

 

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Bloody Bovine

  • 2 oz vodka
  • 4 oz of V8 or Trader Joe’s Vegetable Cocktail Juice
  • 4 oz chilled beef concentrate
  • 4 oz blood
  • 1 tsp of peeled and finely grated fresh horseradish (If you don’t have fresh use the kind in the jar. Don’t use the cream horse radish sauce because it will be disgusting.)
  • A pinch celery salt
  • 2 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 dashes of Tabasco Sauce or more to taste
  • A liberal sprinkle of ground pepper
  • 1/4 oz fresh lemon juice (just squeeze in a few wedges)
  • And a big green olive or two. Try a blue cheese stuffed one.

Instructions:

Combine everything over ice in a big glass (or two if you want to share). Stir. Ganish with a long piece of fresh red bell pepper.

Note: If you’re not a Vampire leave out the blood.

 

Now Let’s Talk BACON

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It’s all about the bacon. And the news is good.

You can now have your bacon and drink it too.

 

How to make Bacon Washed Booze.

 

You can add bacon flavor to vodka, whiskey or broubon. And it is easy. AND best of all you’ll get to eat the bacon.

This is fantastic in a Bloody Ceasar or Bloody Mary.

 

Bacon Washed Booze

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound good quality bacon
  • 26 ounces vodka, whiskey or bourbon (some people like to use rum too. I say go for it.)
  • 2 quart Mason jars
  • Fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth and funnel
  1. Fry up your bacon on low heat until nicely crisp but not charred. You don’t want to burn it. Pour fat from the pan into a heat-safe bowl (like a Pyrex bowl).
  2. Remove bacon strips and put them on a plate that’s covered with a paper towel. Let stand for five minutes.
  3. Pour alcohol of your choice into a large mason jar.
  4. When the bacon has cooled slightly, add strips into the Mason jar with the alcohol. Pour bacon fat into the jar as well. Let jar stand at room temperature for four hours and stir mixture every hour. Remove the bacon strips (but not the fat)
  5. Put the jar into the freezer overnight. The fat will solidify and rise to the top, scrape as much fat out of the jar as possible.
  6. Using a fine-mesh strainer pour vodka from one jar to a new empty mason jar. The strainer should catch lots of bacon fat and other stuff.
  7. Wash the original jar used and train the bacon infused alcohol one more time into the now clean and empty Mason jar. Enjoy.

 

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Make a dry Bacon Martini and garnish with a strip of bacon. Or try a Smokey Vampire. Yum.

 The Smokey Vampire

  • 2 oz. Bacon Infused Bourbon (or Whiskey)
  • 1/4 oz. maple syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Orange juice (just a bit)
  • Blood (just a bit)

In mixing glass, stir 2 ounces bacon-infused bourbon, maple syrup, and bitters with ice. Strain into chilled rocks glass filled with ice. Garnish with bacon and if you want add a splash of orange juice and blood.

Note: If you’re not a Vampire leave out the blood.

 

Have fun and we’ll see you next week for more ATG and Cocktails (and Vampires.)

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer TV Update (with Vampires, guilty pleasures, cooking, movies, AGT, and more)

Fall is just around the corner. I know that because I am painfully aware that books for the fall quarter for two college aged kids will run around $1,600 – $2,000, maybe a little less if they are lucky enough to get used books. But on a good note, the summer TV season is still in full swing.

I know I’m not the only person on the planet who is NOT watching Game of Thrones. I was turned off the first season by all of the gratuitous doggy style sex in every single episode. Really? Come on folks mix it up. I think that is an HBO thing. Seriously it gets annoying after a while (like after the first five or six times within an hour.) There were also a couple of other annoying things. I tried to read the first book and couldn’t get through it due to the writing style. It was well written, but I just couldn’t get into it. Hey, I have read a lot of fantasy, more than most, and a lot of difficult literature (which I loved) but I couldn’t get into Game of Thrones. Sort of like I can’t get into any Wally Lamb book (sort of like waiting in Hell, I mean on hold with any technical support department with any cable company, phone company, or eBay.) But if you like it then go for it. Have fun. As us Vampires say, “sink your teeth into it.” And there are dragons. Dragons are always exceptionally cool.

I also don’t watch Dr. Who. Never have. Never will. I will not discuss the subject. Period.

By the way, I have a funny bit. This morning my husband answered the phone at some early still-dark hour. He said, “Microsoft Technical Support,” and presto – the caller was gone. HA HA HA. I love that man.

So what stupid things have I been watching this summer? Not a lot. Mainly movies. Mainly small indie films. I’ll do another post for summer theater films (maybe) later. This is what I’ve watched and highly recommend that I’ve seen on cable.

Juliette’s Short List for Summer Movies You Can Watch On Your TV or Computer:

  • The Fundamentals of Caring
  • Shimmer Lake
  • I Don’t Feel At Home In This World Anymore
  • Tangerine

Note: All of these are small Independent films. Good stuff. None of them will make you want to strangle me after you see them. Please see the ratings and descriptions before you watch them with kids. 

 

The Bachelorette

Late one night, while I was alone, I discovered The Bachelorette. I discovered Rachael. Who couldn’t love Rachael. She is a beautiful, lovely, charming, sweet woman from Texas.

I usually don’t get hooked into this stuff but I did. I watched it in secret without family or friends. I wouldn’t admit to anyone that I was following Rachael’s adventures. But I couldn’t stop watching it.

You know, if it was a guy picking out a girl from the usually room full of chicks in too high of heels and too tight dresses I wouldn’t have watched. But this was different. This was so different. I’m not going to even try to explain today. Maybe later. Not today (I have stuff to do and need to finish this post.)

She started out with about thirty guys who all wanted to marry her, or at least get the chance to find out if they wanted to marry her. Each week she’d give a rose to the guys she wanted to keep in the running. The guys all stayed together in a stable, I mean house. Some were nice. Several were real douches. Some spent their time back stabbing other guys. That got them nowhere. In the meantime Rachael went around the world having romantic adventures with the fellows and FINALLY picked the last THREE. Oh what a heart break and what a sweet ending.

She picked…one of my favorites…the right choice… Bryan. Woo Hoo. I wish them a long happy life together.

I hope it works out for them when reality sets in. You know the reality I’m talking about. How will they handle it when one of them gets sick our injured? How will she deal with his weird high school friend Kyle? What about their morning routines, holidays, decorating styles, views on how they’ll raise their kids, where they’ll raise their kids, morning coffee breath, what they watch on TV and a variety of weird things? Life after dating can get complicated – yes, that is what marriage is. Marriage is rewarding but it isn’t easy. It takes a lot of work, and it isn’t always romantic.

I still can’t believe I got sucked into this. Awww, must be the romantic in me. Hey, Peter, dude, you blew it.

America’s Got Talent

This is my flagship show. What I mean by that is that when I first started this blog back in 2012 I started blogging about this show every single week during the summer. All of us (me, family, friends) would gather around and watch. I publish comments from the peanut gallery – unfiltered and unapologetic. The honest truth. The show is good this year and now in the judges cuts for the top acts. I’ll be posting on it again… and YES WITH COCKTAILS. Do a search for previous blog posts on this show.

I have to add one note about this season’s “golden buzzer” choices. A small girl with a big voice sang a lovely song and received the “golden buzzer.” My daughter looked the girl up on Google and found that she’d been in talent shows all over Asia. No wonder she was so good on stage, so slick, and utterly fantastic in a practiced and staged way. Her parents have made her into an industry – starting with what they named her (after a famous singer.) Unlike many of the other children we’ve seen on the show I feel this child is exploited by her parents. There is nothing natural about her. This isn’t talent. This is force fed performance – like a trained dog or monkey. She is their cash cow – raised to be a cash cow. By the time she is 23 she’ll be washed up, but who cares – mom and dad can retire in comfort. It is too bad the guest judge who pressed the golden buzzer couldn’t have seen through the blatant exploitation of a small child.

Vampire Cocktails – two parts mixer, one part blood. Cheers. And never drink and drive.

Next Food TV Star

This season had a bunch of likable folks (except two who were just annoying.) In my opinion it was the best season ever. They are now down to the last three. All men. All fun. All guys you’d want to hug and have as neighbors. All great. My bets are on Jason, a wonderful guy from Tennessee with an accent that will melt your heart away. I could just eat him up. This man can cook and entertain. Let’s see what happens.

If you don’t want to win on this show do the following:

  1. Refer to yourself as “Mama” something.
  2. Talk non-stop about a distant country you identify with, that nobody has ever heard of, even though you are 5th generation American. Then rather than educating us, and sharing with us the wonders of your beautiful family culture, be so confusing about it that nobody knows what the crap you’re talking about.
  3. Be totally clueless in the kitchen.
  4. Show the other contestants how ignorant and helpless you are.
  5. Act surprised that you’re going to be on TV and have to talk about your food.
  6. Don’t know what a vanilla bean looks like.
  7. Make the other contestants want to cry when they are paired up with you.
  8. Don’t follow directions.
  9. Act like a Martha Stewart wannabe.
  10. Make some sort of shrimp and grits for every single challenge. Yes, we know you’re from the South, but I know damn well that folks from the South eat a lot more than grits.

Preacher

I love this show. I fucking love this show.

Life Below Zero

I’m hooked. Love Sue. Love the others too. But I wish they’d show more than just hunting and fishing. I’d like to see other aspects of their lives as well. We get a hint, but I’d like more. OK I admit, I watch for the foxes at Sue’s and the puppies with everyone else.

Forged in Steel

People make knives. No drama. They are craftsmen and women. They are awesome. Wow. Check it out.

Ink Master

Yes, we’re watching this weird and wonderful train wreck of a show. This year is a team effort (teams of two in competition against each other.) There is less drama and better ink than on previous shows. Thank you producers for raising the bar a little. And did I say better artists? Yes, they’re better than we’ve seen in years. Like most shows this is just something we watch together, talk about while we watch it, and don’t take too seriously. It is family time. Don’t like to watch it alone cause it just wouldn’t be fun. And Dave is still hot.

If this Vampire wants to tattoo your image on his arm…you’ll have to check out his entire body first. Hey, look at the Vampire Maman tattoo (yes, he has a tattoo.) Is that me on his arm? Hell yeah!

 

So have a nice week everyone, and try to get outside too. Have fun – as only the summer can give you.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

America’s Got Talent 2016 FINAL – With Cocktails & Vampires

AGT and Cocktails

AGT and Cocktails

Every summer since 2012 I’ve been posting about AGT and Cocktails – that is the television talent show America’s Got Talent, my husband Teddy’s cocktails, and comments from the peanut gallery (assorted Vampires and occasional “other” friends.)

Tonight we have my daughter Clara, Teddy, my brothers Max and Andy, and Lola here to watch and make their peanut gallery observations.

This year I’m skipping to the FINAL. I didn’t feel like blogging every single show this year. t have to admit it has been a good year. There have been a lot of talented people in the competition this year. I’m not crazy about all of the finalists but I like most of them. All are good. Anyone could win. There are no unlikable assholes, freakish contrived family acts, obnoxious Cha Cha dancers, precocious brats, or fart acts.

What we are watching are talented kids, talented adults, great singers, unique sleight of hand, a guy with tape over his mouth, a pretzel girl, a juggler from another time  and old-fashioned mind readers.

I’m not going to go into great detail about who these folks are. If you’ve watched the show all along you’ll know who they are. I’ll post a video of each from either the final or a previous show.

Sal Valenetti

The 20-year-old St. John’s University student brought down the house singing Mac The Knife like a seasoned pro. I love this guy.

Comments from the peanut gallery: He is just smooth. He crushed it. He nailed it. I could listen to this guy ALL NIGHT. Wow. And the judges loved him.

He could win.

Sophie Dossi

From the Peanut Gallery: What is she going to do. I want to see her eat her foot. She can pint her toe nails from this. There is nothing that gives me a wow from her. Any gymnast can do that. This just sucks. How does she do that. You seen enough? The one with the remote fast forwarded this one. Alice doesn’t care, then again she is a dog.

Linkin’ Bridge

From the Peanut Gallery: Great the first time but… The big guy is the one who can sing, I don’t know why they keep letting the other one do solos. That guy can sing too. They need to pick songs that are actually good to sing. They did it ass backwards – the solos were in the wrong place. But it doesn’t sound too bad. They are good but I’m not getting the wow I got the first time. Sort of like that wonderful first date and by the fourth date you’re kind of bored. Nobody liked the back up singers. Why do great singers and groups have to ruin it with backup singers. The original was such a good song. Sigh. They are about two carrots short of stew. Good but not quite. I could pick four random guys around a fire on a corner in Philadelphia and they’d do just as good.

Laura Breton

The Peanut Gallery was speechless. This is why people watch opera. She is so talented. With training…oh my goodness. Where does that voice come from? And angel. Only fourteen with a real natural beauty and sweetness. Such passion. She hits is perfect every single time.

The Clarivoynts

The Peanut Gallery: They’re creepy. I like them. They’re so pretty and charming and I know how they do it. Word cues. They have their own code just like the clairvoyants of the 19th century and before. Key words. Key words. Key words. But they do it with style.  This is county fair shit. This is awful. We’ve seen others like them but they’ve all been voted out. I’m done. She isn’t dressed like some skank. OK I’m done.

Brian Justin Crum

Ho Hum. I’m just not a fan. Then he did a Queen cover – is was, well, in my opinion, awful.

From the Peanut Gallery: This is awful. He’s announcing not singing. He changes the songs too much. He can’t hit the notes so he changes the songs. He can’t hit notes. A one trick pony. I didn’t even recognize that song. OMG that is Michael Jackson. No. The jacket is too tight. He sucks. The judges hyped him up so much. He’s horrible. That wasn’t even singing.

I have to say that my brother Andy is here. Andy is a professional opera singer. He just sort of rolled his eyes. Someone mentioned that one of the judges has the intelligence of a jelly bean.

Tape Mouth

I love him. Teddy is not a fan. He does stuff in New Zealand but under his own name without the tape.

Peanut Gallery: I got to admit that was pretty good. I wonder what he does when he isn’t so random. I wonder if he won if he’d break character and take off the tape. When you look him up he mentions that his ideas come from Charlie Chaplin and other silent comedians. The sight gags are goo. He just flashed the 21 Pilots symbol.

Victor Kee

Juggling like the Ballet Russe from the early 20th Century. He is from another time. I love his style. I love his look.

The Peanut Gallery: I can’t do a summersault. He isn’t as wonderful tonight as he usually is. Uh oh he dropped one. He is still beautiful to watch. I was hoping with the mountain/fire background that he’d do Hall of the Mountain King. Butt contour.

John Dorenbos

Peanut Gallery: He is so sweet. Do you remember him from when he was playing football? He still plays dear. He is so likable. He is but he’s used to being in the public eye. He has a good message. His presentation is what makes him. Magic that inspires. He is brilliant.

Don’t hate, don’t blame, and forgive. The magic is in every single one of us. I’m getting all choked up now. Awww man.

Gracie VanderWaal

And the winner is… she is only 12 years old. Wow. We love her. She could be opening for Never Shout Never, or 21 Pilots, or Fall Out Boy, or even Panic! at the Disco.

You can tell she is a good kid. You can tell she isn’t from some weird family who is trying to exploit her. She writes her own songs. She could be singing at Warped Tour. Cha Ching Simon.

Her style is Punk Pop (in the indie/alternative range), which by the way is what my kids love. Good job Grace for not buying into the commercial crap that is forced upon so many young minds and ears.

 

Who got our votes?

Sal, Laura, John, and Grace.

Who will win? Grace, John, or Sal.

We’ll see tomorrow.

Cheers!

Cheers!

Tonight’s Cocktail:

Kentucky Coffee

  • 8-10 oz Coffee (we used butterscotch carmel flavored beans, but you can use whatever kind you want, say a nice Etheopian blend.)
  • A dash of cinnimon
  • 1/4 cut milk
  • A shot or two of Bourbon
  • If you’re a Vampire add a shot or two of hot strained blood.
  • Mix it all in a mug and enjoy.

Ohhh, now it’s time for Ink Master. Tuesday night is when all the Vampires watch TV. Really. I couldn’t make this shit up.

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

We've got plenty of talent.

We’ve got plenty of talent.