Junk Drawer: Week of April 8th


Photo Source: Real Simple

If there is one truth that I hold to be self-evident, it’s that in every home, you will find a junk drawer.  You know, that place where you stash extra batteries, your toaster manual, orphaned coat buttons, and play tickets?  The junk drawer is a domestic treasure chest – home to some of your most coveted things (like your nephew’s drawings) – and yet also an archaeological dig of ancient artifacts (like that picture of you in a bikini from college).  And so I bring to you The Wonderist’s Friday feature: “The Junk Drawer.”  I’ll be sharing with you a mish-mash of link love from around the world wide interwebs – fun, important, off-the-wall stuff – just like the insides of your junk drawer.

Want to liven up your commute?  Try this!

It seems like just yesterday, Zach Morris was talking on one of these.  Happy 40th birthday, cellphone!

What do you think about this lingerie?

I need to get out more!

PopCrush recently released this list of Top 10 Songs about Brooklyn.  What are your favorite hometown songs?

Oh, man, I want this.  Real bad.

Molly Ringwald has a jazz album?!

Margaret Thatcher passed away this week at the tender age of 87, but this popular hashtag had many believing it was Cher!

I bet many of my friends with young children can relate to this playful tumblr about Reasons My Son is Crying.

Check out these photos from the Chuck Norris of photography – hard core!

Happy Weekend, Everyone!


One in a Million: Joseph Gordon-Levitt

While Joseph Gordon-Levitt (swoon) may have only played a time traveler in last year’s blockbuster hit “Looper,” I’m now more convinced than ever that he’s a visitor from the future.

He recently announced that his company Hit Record will be making a new kind of variety show for Pivot – one that will be produced by common folk like us!  Each episode will be built around a common theme and artists everywhere will come together to collaborate on the content together on JGL’s Hit Record website.  Ladies and gentlemen, this is the future! (I am having a full-blown nerd attack, aren’t I?  I should probably be doing this in private.)

We’ve all seen the way new technology has put creative power into the hands of the people (from what I can tell, a lot of those people have really entertaining cats) – pretty much anyone with a video phone can be a movie producer.

This is the kind of project that gets me pumped – it feels grassrootsy (first made-up word of the day) and supportive and limitless.  JGL saw an untapped potential to gather that creative energy and launch it into the universe (or at the very least, onto the small screen), and I like it.

I dare you to watch this video about the project and to NOT a) doodle Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s name all over your notebook, and b) be excited!

Will any of you submit something to Hit Record?

(One in a Million is a regular feature highlighting people doing innovative things that matter.  JGL started Hit Record with his brother back in 2005 as an artists’ collective where people share their work, a sort of “for us, by us” home for the creative community.  It has been the platform for artists to launch book deals, movie projects, music tours, etc.  But you don’t have to be a celebrity to make your mark – let me know what you’re doing to make the world a cool, collaborative, creative place, so that I can share your good deeds with our fellow Wonderists!)


The Coloring Book: Playing with Your Food


Photo Source: Instagram @redhongyi

Well, this gives all-new meaning to the idea of “playing with your food.”  Malaysian artist Hong Yi finished her “Creativity with Food” series on April 7th after a month of posting a photo a day in which she transformed common foods into anything-but-common art.  Hong Yi, who goes by the nickname Red, is an artist-architect who likes to paint but “not with a paintbrush,” she says, often opting for less conventional mediums, like coffee cup stains, basketballs, and sunflower seeds for her projects.  After a recent trip to the US, she made this portrait of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg out of carved books.

The blog designboom recently sat down with Red to talk about her work.  When asked about her influences, Red quoted Picasso – “All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”  Ain’t that the truth.  Red strives to find fun in the ordinary…and this time, found it in her kitchen!

I highly recommend checking out the full “Creativity with Food” series on Red’s instagram page.  I think the Eggplant Circus and the Giant Squid Attack are genius, and I’ll never look at my leftovers the same way.

How do YOU get creative with food?

(The Coloring Book is a regular feature that aims to highlight cool things happening in the visual arts community.)


The Ball Drop: Holi!


Thousands throw colored powder in sequence every 2 hours during the Holi Festival of Colors, on Saturday, Mar. 24, 2012, at the Lotus Temple, in Spanish Fork, Utah. (Photo by Benjamin B. Morris ©2012)

Anyone who knows me knows that I dress like a box of crayons.  To say I love color would be a massive understatement.  If I could eat color, I would – it gives me that kind of energy.  Red, yellow, blue, you name it – I’m an equal opportunity lover of color – which is why the Holi celebrations every year make me so gosh darn happy.

If you’re not familiar, Holi is the Hindu Festival of Colors and marks the beginning of Spring, something we’re finally beginning to see early signs of here in New York City.  People all over the world get together to celebrate by throwing scented powder and perfume at one another – it’s basically a food fight…but with color.  How fun is that?!

Even celebrities get in on the action – Lauren Conrad posted this picture on herself on twitter following a Holi celebration in India, and I have to say, I think she looks pretty in pink!

I propose that we take Holi to Central Park next year and color-bomb NYC – who’s in?

(Named for the iconic New Year’s Eve celebration in Times Square, The Ball Drop is a regular feature highlighting cool things happening all over the world.  Whether it’s a small, but unique, family celebration in your backyard, or something so big we can see it from space – let me know all about it!)


Introducing…The Wonderist!


Introducing…drumroll…dove release…my blog, The Wonderist! (Cue me shooting out of a cannon in some sort of patriotic leotard.)

I have spent the last year dreaming about writing a blog and thinking about how to make it interesting.  After a short-lived foray into blogging last year, I realized the only person who would want to read what I was writing was my mother (love you, Mom!).  So I took some time to really get to the heart of “what is the what” – what do I have to say that would help people feel connected to each other?  After all, isn’t that why writers write and readers read?

The name came first.  “The Wonderist” feels – to me, anyway – like the written-word equivalent of jazz hands.  I hope that it captures the enthusiasm I feel about life and hope that my blog can do the same.

They say that men think about sex every 10 seconds (okay, I made that up – you can look forward to more made-up facts when you read my blog!).  But 10 seconds is about how often I “wonder” about something – I wonder if I’ll ever live in France, I wonder if I could make a Cameroon juju hat from scratch, I wonder how many blog posts I could write about polka dots (the answer = a gajillion)?

I think life is pretty magical (I mean the fact that I got out of bed before 8am to write this is astounding), and I hope that my blog connects us all to other like-minded people who think creatively, care about helping others, and want to fall in love with every day like I do.  I know that there’s a whole community of “us” out there (I don’t mean to make us sound like aliens, but roll with it), and I truly believe in the power we have to affect change and inspire others with our shared gusto.

To that end, you can look forward to seeing things like:

  • Humor Pieces
  • Fashion and Lifestyle Features
  • Travel Journals
  • DIY Projects
  • People Profiles
  • An Advice Column
  • Book, Photography, and Music Reviews
  • And more!

This is going to be a spaghetti-on-the-wall experiment.  I’m going to try all sorts of things out, and, with your feedback, we’ll figure out what sticks.  Deal?

Let’s get started!