Archive | November, 2010

Interview with Josh Shipp, Teen Advice Guru! (He’s kinda like us, but a boy).

22 Nov

If you don’t know Josh Shipp yet, you should.

He is the author of   “The Teen’s Guide to World Domination: Advice on Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Awesomeness.”

He is also an advice columnist at, host of his own TV show and a true inspiration. AND HE’S ENTERTAINING.

I can’t tell you how many people I have shamelessly given advice books to, only to have them say they were boring and they didn’t finish them.

Well excuuuuuuuuse me, Prince William! I thought you knew the Wii controller was sold separately.

(Note to self: Look into making an advice video game)

Anyway, this book is not boring. It is hilarious. We laughed, and even teared up in places. Granted the pollen count is really high this time of the year, and the fall winds are raging.  But let’s just say everyone is getting IDENTICAL CHRISTMAS PRESENTS!! (Cut to: confetti shooting out of a cannon and the ballistic audience at Oprah).

Josh talks about all the Villians holding you back in your quest to world domination and how to deal with them. Some villians include: Ghosts (fears and limitations), Ninjas (Bullies),  Zombies (Negative Neds and Nancies), Robots, Pirates, Puppies and so on. When you read it, you’ll be nodding your head in agreement saying, “OMG I totally know those kind of people! And OMG they ARE holding me back!”

We could not recommend this book more.

We’d love to take up more of your time, but you’ve got a world to dominate and a book to read. And you’re in luck- we are giving away a free copy! Just send a question for our blog to The best question wins! (Flattery helps)

Onto the interview.

1 What made you want to write this book? Or as a smart person might say, what was the catalyst?

Hey Sweetie! I got you a cool book to read...!

I wanted to create a quote “self-help book for teens” that teens would actually like. Not one of those your Mom buys for you and you say “oh yeah sure I’ll read it” and then you eventually end up burning it, E-baying it, or giving it to your worst enemy.

I liked the challenge of creating a book that would actually help people but also be entertaining and interesting to read. I think you can talk about serious topics – without taking yourself too seriously.

Which leads to the title.  I believe it’s not WHAT you say – it’s HOW you say it.

Option A. “The 5 pragmatic steps to becoming a successful teen”  <== Makes me wanna throw up in my mouth.

Option B. “The Teen’s Guide to World Domination” <== Alright, I’ll give that a try.

2. How did you come up with the villians and world domination angle because it’s genius. We would love if your terms became common vernacular. For instance, when someone meets a bully they would roll their eyes and say “Ugh, SUCH a pirate.”

Vernacular = 7 Fancy word points. Ummm, I think it’s important to have mile markers in a book.  I’m not delusional, people are busy…there is no way someone is going to memorize all 250 pages of the book.  So I wanted to create something that you could easily reference in your mind when your faced with a difficult situation. The “Seven Villains Keeping You From Awesomeness” does that. Tomorrow: you interact with someone who sucks the life out of you – you know they are a Vampire and you know exactly how to deal with them.

3. What are some of your favorite books?

Since I write non-fiction, I’m a big fan of non-fiction books. Anything that has a unique angle to it, that isn’t what you’d expect.  A few I really like are “Blue Like Jazz”, “Purple Cow“, and “Love is Greater Than Hate”.

4. You’re funny. Who or what makes you laugh?

Thanks. Random situations make me laugh. Seeing people in awkward situations and not rescuing them from it makes me weep with joy.  Let’s say you’re on a double date, your friend says the most awkward thing imaginable. You could rescue them…and change the subject. I prefer to sit in it, look at them lovingly, let out a “huh, interesting” and then ask follow-up questions.

That makes me laugh or maybe I’m just a jerk.

5. Extra credit question: Any advice for the teen girls of the world? I think Title IX requires we include boys too, so answer as you wish.


#1 – You are prettier than you think you are. Yes, you. Stop being so hard on yourself, stop comparing yourself to fake photoshopped images, and rock your own beauty and personality. That is incredibly hot.

#2 – It’s good to have role models, people you look up to. But DO NOT study their end result, study their first steps. When you study the end result- you go “oh their so awesome – no way I could be like them”

When you study their first steps, you realize they were just as freaked out, scared, insecure and unsure of their ability as you are right now.

#3 – When possible, whip your hair back and forth.

Josh Shipp is the host of the TV Show Jump Shipp, author of “The Teen’s Guide to World Domination” and likes talking to strangers in Wal-Mart.  Say hi at

Attention Snookies of the World: Skin Cancer isn’t just for Old People!

7 Nov

Unlike some employers, skin cancer does not discriminate based on age. We are all at risk. I hate to get morbid to get my point across, but I just lost a family friend to skin cancer. She was only 32 and she was the mother of four children. It was tragic and completely unexpected.

Skin cancer victimizes people of all ages, so please protect your skin. No one is immune and there is no excuse. In the time it takes to update your mob in Mafia Wars (or whatever you do in that game), you can slather on some sunscreen (or have a cute boy help you) and start your day.

It scares me that so many people list their favorite hobbies as ‘getting sun’ or ‘tanning’. Keep that up and down the road your hobbies may be ‘mole removal’ and ‘chemo’.

I know, tanning is seductive. We’ve all been there, laying in the sweltering heat for hours, lathered in oil and rotating at intervals, like a pig on a skewer. Later you’re sunburned and in severe pain, yelling at anyone that tries to hug you, ‘DON’T TOUCH ME, I’m sunburned!’ Then you’re rubbing yourself down with aloe vera, taking cold showers and crying ‘Why did I do this to myself?! Never again!’

But then your sunburn peels off and you have a tan. You think, Wow, I look great! And you’re off to the pool again, not to practice your breaststroke, but to bake like a batch of funfetti cupcakes.

You might have an awesome tan now, but all that sun exposure wrecks havoc on your skin. It can make your skin unnecessarily leathery and wrinkly when you’re older. So if skin cancer doesn’t scare you straight, maybe your vanity will?

I agree, many people look better with a little tan. But they don’t look better when they are TOO tan, or much darker than their natural skin tone. My mom is from the Philippines, a land where many people try to avoid the sun, not bask in it. When she notices I’m a bit tanner, she exclaims “Wow, you’re tan!”

My natural reaction is often, “Thanks!”

Then I remember who I am talking to and before I can explain myself, she says,

“That wasn’t a compliment.”

Filipino or Russian, Beach Bunny or Eskimo, here are some simple and fool-proof tips to protect your skin while you’re taking in those rays.

1. Wear broad spectrum sunscreen every single day. Broad spectrum sunscreen helps block out both UVA and UVB rays. The sun shines year round, so you and your precious skin are at risk every day, not just during the spring and summer. Clouds are no match for UV rays and you are no match for skin cancer.

2. Wear sunscreen with antioxidants (like Vitamin C, E, Green tea extract, etc). Many sunscreens now have antioxidants in them, or you can wear a separate antioxidant cream underneath. My favorite is Alba Aloe and Green Tea Oil-Free Moisturizer. It is certified organic, inexpensive and you can find it at any drugstore. Another great drugstore cream is Avalon Vitamin C Renewal Creme.

3. Wear hats and UV protected sunglasses. Are you noticing a pattern here?

Kim got the memo on sunglasses, but forgot her sunscreen!

4. If you want to tan, use self-tanner. And if you have used self-tanner, wear sunscreen over it. Self-tanner is the safest tanning option, much better than the sun, or dangerous tanning beds (aka cancer boxes). But it does make your skin more susceptible to the sun than usual, so layer on that sunscreen.

Self tanners have come a long way and there are some really good ones that give you a natural looking tan vs. the classic tacky orange nightmares from the past. Jaundice is not a good look on anyone. 5. Keep a close eye on your moles and the moles of your friends and family. I know, it sounds weird, but we think its nice when someone tells us we have spinach in our teeth. So why not when a mole looks irregular? I have definitely told people if a mole they have has changed or looks irregular. You want to catch these things right away, and if anything seems strange, get thee to a dermatologist. Click here for more information on how to examine your moles:

6. Don’t be so intimidated you skip all this and run to the beach basted in I Can’t Believe It’s not Butter. The sun is really strong so for those of you who are tan happy, rest assured, you will still tan if you wear hats, sunglasses and sunscreen.

And don’t feel guilty about sun exposure in general. Sun intake  is healthy in small, daily amounts because it provides us with much needed Vitamin D. Dr. Oz recommends getting 10-15 minutes of sun a day, while wearing sunscreen on your face and hands. But in this case, more sun is not better, so don’t applaud yourself for 8 hours of extra credit/sun exposure .

The skin is the body’s largest organ. So please, take care of it now, so you don’t look like a wrinkly Tanorexic sooner or later.

For up-to-date information, check out these resources:

Party Like it’s 1920 and VOTE!

2 Nov

Yes, on August 26, 1920, the 19th Amendment was made official and women nationwide were granted the right to vote.

Help a sister out!

So let’s party like it’s 1920 and exercise that right!

It is absolutely insane to think that women have been allowed to vote for less than 100 years in the United States of America. The Suffragettes- the women who fought for our right to vote, have always had a special place in my heart. So please, for all those great women that came before us, get to the polls.

If you’re overwhelmed by the political process, there are plenty of places to learn about your candidates and propositions. Yahoo has a guide that is organized by state. And you can also check your local newspapers for their take and endorsements.

I will leave you with this fun excerpt from about how women used humor to show how silly it was to be excluded at the polls. (Full article at Women\’s Suffrage Victory)

“Opposed by a well-organized and well-funded anti-suffrage movement which argued that most women really didn’t want the vote, and they were probably not qualified to exercise it anyway, women also used humor as a tactic. In 1915, writer Alice Duer Miller wrote,

Why We Don’t Want Men to Vote

  • Because man’s place is in the army.
  • Because no really manly man wants to settle any question otherwise than by fighting about it.
  • Because if men should adopt peaceable methods women will no longer look up to them.
  • Because men will lose their charm if they step out of their natural sphere and interest themselves in other matters than feats of arms, uniforms, and drums.
  • Because men are too emotional to vote. Their conduct at baseball games and political conventions shows this, while their innate tendency to appeal to force renders them unfit for government.”