Alex writes about what Parks and Recreation says about Iron Man 3′s mediocrity, Robert Redford, Steven Soderbergh (again), and why we’re getting tired of superheroes. He also explains why we shouldn’t fret about the future of Hollywood filmmaking.
Conservative and glamorous are pretty much synonyms when it comes to Philippine fashion.
There’s nothing quite like the overbearing anxiety that comes with an airport. The overpriced and subpar food; the other travellers moving at an unmatched sluggish pace; and, of course, the absolutely useless and attitude prone employees.
From what I can tell, these days Rob Moir is a little more poet and a little less punk. This mellow musician with roots in Toronto’s indie scene will be playing a myriad of shows to promote his latest album Places to Die, which is released April 27 2013.
When life gets hectic, we go to the spa. At S+C, we took it one extra step and brought the spa to us in the First Annual Songs + Cigarettes Spa Day/Anti-Spa Day. We went swimming, we sat in a hot tub and we broke the steam room – all without leaving the comfort and privacy of a second floor condo.
Sure, it’s not quite the fancy Yorkville spa experience, but in our case (or at least based on where this particular condo was located), we were at least Yorkville-adjacent. So, let’s not call it a full spa, but rather: spa-adjacent.
Sometimes life in the S+C offices can be stressful. No one can fix the fax machine. Somebody keeps overpaying the intern. And one of us always microwaves something gross for lunch. It gets rough. After a few too many stressful days cooped up at S+C HQ, it was decided that we all needed a little R&R. A chance to unwind together.
It was spa week recently in Toronto and rather than indulging in some random 15% off facial treatment, we wanted to take things into our own hands, for cheap. Also, because we (assume) it’s uncouth to openly drink beer in the middle of a fancy skin treatment.
We made plans, we bought the tools, so now we’re a spa blog. (Is that a thing?)
Our afternoon was pretty informal, which is part of what made it a little better than a traditional spa experience. Okay, I missed having a strange woman insist I wear the white terrycloth robe, but I got over it. We spent a significant amount of our afternoon relaxing in the pool/hot tub. It’s not a true spa experience unless you’re sitting in a scalding vat of other people’s germs and hair for over an hour until your head gets dizzy.
We tried the contrasting cold/hot experience by jumping out of said hot tub and running outside for a blast of cold air, but the mild +4 degree weather made that a little less dramatic than hoped.
Now, have you ever been in a steam room? It’s not that bad, unless you happen to like taking deep breaths. We managed to life hack the little steam machinery until we could barely make each other out in the haze. “More steam!” We demanded. “More steam!” It didn’t help that the steam room itself could barely house the five of us. An uncomfortably intimate experience to say the least.
You get the idea.
After our skin was sufficiently pruned, we wanted to tackle those pesky blackheads and rough patches on our face once and for all. It doesn’t matter that – for most of us – we haven’t had any skin problems since our stupid teenager years, we were determined to get the full spa experience. With a handful of $1.99 Life Brand/Shoppers Drug Mart face masks (I think mine was shea butter and coconut) and a box full of Biore strips, we went to work.
Maybe I lost track of time, maybe at this point I was a little too deep in the beers, but man, those strips aren’t easy to pull off. On the upside, my skin hadn’t felt this smooth in over a decade. Thanks brand name chemicals!
We also split two party pizzas between the six or so of us. Thankfully we ordered two because the flyer openly lied and said one party pizza would serve a group of 6-8. LIES. The rest of the afternoon was just like any other spa experience: we watched a New Girl rerun, Army of Darkness (go Ash!), and a little hockey before heading to a bar to close the night.
That’s how the ladies do it, right?
So, due to the resounding success of the First Annual Songs+Cigarettes Spa Day/Anti Spa Day, we present four easy tips/tricks/suggestions that you need to replicate this life changing experience in the comfort of your own house. It’s easy, relatively cheap and you won’t get shushed by the rich lady getting her nails clipped. Unless that’s your thing.
1) Find friends willing to get half-naked with you. This is surprisingly easy. You may need to actually turn people away because people (at least the people I know) love stripping down in front of others. Plus, when it’s your friends and not totally strangers there is less judgment about that weird mole or why your back has those odd patches of hair.
2) Get Access to a Pool. In Toronto, the odds are almost a guarantee that someone you know can get you into a condo pool. If you can’t find a water source, then standing around in someone’s kitchen in your bathing suit stops become fun pretty quickly.
3) Think Cheap. Maybe you have some old forgotten moisturizer/face wash/complimentary soap hidden at the back of your medicine cabinet. Anything that can safely be rubbed on the skin can be busted out when hosting an at-home spa day.
4) Order Good Food. By now it is likely clear that I have never been to an actual spa. I assume the only thing to eat in a real spa is maybe some seaweed and over-priced bottles of water. Don’t be like that. Order some actual, real food. Chicken wings? Burgers? Pizza? What matters is that after relaxing in a hot tub afternoon, you’re going to want to stuff your face.
Our First Annual Songs+Cigarettes Spa Day/Anti-Spa Day was a success. Next year, I think we might add in a hot stone treatment. (Boiling rocks that I bought years ago at Pier 1 is the same thing, right?) Maybe hire one of the masseuses I’ve seen advertised in the back of NOW? The sky is the limit.
Thanks to our spa day I haven’t felt this relaxed in years. Shame I still have to go to work and experience post-spa hangovers.