Elite Urbanite Tries Something New: Rage Ground

Elite Urbanite Tries Something New: Rage Ground

Remember when we were allowed outside? Me either. There are still a few things I do remember prior to the pandemic. One of them being my time at Rage Round! For my birthday, I often like to something I’ve never done before. I feel like I can go out and party any other day so why spend my special day not doing necessarily, well, special.

Though I’m turning 27 this year, one of the best birthdays I had was my 25th back in 2019. As a Sagittarius, I’ve got a lot of anger in me. So sometimes I’m in the mood to just smash shit! So Rage Ground was the perfect place to release some tension!

When you go to the website to book your ticket, you can choose from several different options. You can have a session as short as 20 minutes, or even one that’s over an hour long. I even saw that they recently added a paint splatter session as well as a car smashing session!

Before you get to smashin’, you’re given a coverall suit, thick contractor gloves, and some protective face gear. Then you’re guided back into the room, where the only two rules are don’t hit each other and don’t hit the walls. Once you’re squared away, they turn the metal mayhem music up and you get to breaking stuff within the allotted time!

With the stressful year and a half we all experienced, I feel like the like Rage Ground is not only a great stress reliever but also a fun place to make memories. If you’ve been in the mood to punch someone in the face during these “unprecedented times” like I have, Rage Ground is the perfect place to go!

Elite Urbanite Tried It: Color Me Mine! (FINALLY)

elite urbanite tried it: color me mine!

Since I have lived in California (EIGHT YEARS!) I have been wanting to go to Color Me Mine. I’m a big kid at heart, so a lot of acquaintances in the past who *thought* they were adults felt as though they were too cool to go paint on the weekends. Honestly, I much rather be “uncool” and paint a ceramic unicorn than be “cool” and have everyone in LA know what the inside of my vagene looks like. But, different strokes for different folks I guess… (in this instance, I much rather brush paint strokes than get a few weak strokes from someones dusty son). OK anyway, back to what I was talking about… LOL.

One weekend I was feeling a bit down and was looking for something both cost effective and fun to do. When I was at my parents house, there was a Color Me Mine right around the corner, calling upon me everyday, mocking me if you will. Then, low and behold… I’m driving around, running errands, and BOOM! There is also a Color Me Mine right around the corner from my apartment! *Cue Hallelujah* So I came home, quickly got changed and got hyped for my solo date night at Color Me Mine!

Let me tell ya, I am SO glad I went. I’m sure most people are uncomfortable with doing things alone, but I genuinely love it. It was such a peaceful experience. I went a little too close to closing time, so the perfectionist in me was disappointed that I had to rush at the end. I actually made the guy stay 15 minutes past closing time, sorry dude. But, now I have this wonderful addition to my (already quite busy) apartment… Meet Mystery!

The Best Shows I Binged So Far

THE BEST SHOWS I BINGED SO FAR

Well, I’ve certainly had a lot of time on my hands this past year. Besides taking the time to better myself and all that jazz (blah, blah, blah)… I watched a shitload of TV. I’m typically not a big binge watcher, but like what the hell else am I supposed to do watch paint dry???

I’m sure for some of these shows I’m a bit late to the party (sue me), and for some of the others, a lot of y’all probably haven’t even heard of. Who knows, maybe after reading this list you’ll find a new favorite tv show! Though I watched a LOT of tv, I’ve narrowed down which shows I enjoyed the most. Check it out below – (don’t worry no spoilers!)

SUCCESSION – OKAY everyone around me knows that this is my new favorite show. I cannot stop talking about Succession. A few of my former co-workers had actually told me to watch this last year, but for some reason I just kept forgetting to tune in. I don’t know why but I can never remember to watch these HBO shows! I looove this show because it is fast paced and intense, but at the same time absolutely hysterical. The show centers on the “Roy” family and the patriarch’s plans to figure out who in his inner circle will ultimately succeed the company. Though Succession touches on elements such as substance abuse and family traumas, my favorite parts are when Tom and Gregg are on screen together! Who can forget classic lines such as “You can’t make a Tomlette without breaking a few Greggs” or “We Hear For You”. Also Nicholas Braun aka “Cousin Gregg” is my boyfriend in my head.

BOJACK HORSEMAN – Even though Bojack Horseman is a cartoon, it deals with some real deep shit. There were even times that I had to take a break from watching it because it was a bit triggering. For background, the main character, Bojack, is a down on his luck 80’s sitcom star who is trying to repair his career. A career that he destroyed on his own due to his bouts with depression, anxiety, drug abuse, and alcoholism. In the start of the show, it seems as though Bojack is just like any other washed up Hollywood asshole, but as the series goes on we learn more about why he is the way he is and that it’s never to late for second chances.

THE UNDOING – This show was fucking bonkers! The Undoing just came out on HBO Max back in October so there’s still time to catch up without being too behind. Hugh Grant and Nicole Kidman play husband and wife in this thriller filled with twists and turns. They live a perfect life with their son in the Upper East Side of Manhattan and work as an Oncologist and a Therapist. I mean just fabulous! However, like most thrillers… was it all *really* perfect? I won’t give away any more deets, but this show is a perfect example of how you never truly know someone as much as you think you do.

UNSOLVED MYSTERIES – I’m the biggest chicken in the world so I’m not even sure why I watched this show to begin with. I usually do enjoy a good crime show or mystery series, because I know they find the culprit at the end. As the name suggests, in this series… THEY DO NOT! Which makes it all the more frightening. To be fair, a lot of the cases are pretty unique and specific to the individual. However, there were a few episodes that had me boarding up my windows and doors.

THE IMAGINEERING STORY – Because I am a big kid stuck in a small adult’s body, I freaking LOVE Disneyland. It’s one of the first places I’ll be going when the world is officially safe to inhabit again. For those who are unfamiliar, an Imagineer is what they call the people who conceptualize the Disney parks. Obviously building a theme park is no easy feat, but seeing just how detail oriented this group of people have been over the past sixty-six years is completely awe inspiring. Definitely a must watch!

THE LAST DANCE – So, I was a wee child during the infamous Bulls era. Actually I wasn’t even alive for a good majority of it. However! I do remember all the hype and hoopla surrounding the pop culture phenomenon that is Michael Jordan. And of course, I love Space Jam. But what do I love more than any of that? DENNIS RODMAN! Though I’m not the biggest sports junkie, I do love how important this era was to pop culture and how much it changed the game of basketball forever. Tbh I got emotional watching that final game (like I didn’t already know how it ended) because they just showed so much heart and team work. Ugh, I can watch this one over and over again.

BILLY ON THE STREET – This web series originally started on Funny or Die back in 2011, but recently they’ve put it all on Netflix! My mom hates this show, but I love how absolutely ridiculous it is. Comedian Billy Eichner runs (yes runs) around New York City asking the nearest passerby the most ridiculous questions for a chance to win some money. And as many of you know, New Yorkers don’t have the patience for that shit. Which makes it even funnier. Sometime’s he’ll be with mega stars, and sometime’s he’ll be dressed up as C3PO. You never know what to expect when watching Billy on the Street.

THE DARK SIDE OF THE RING – To be completely clear I do not watch WWE. Especially not anything past the late 90’s. I always admired the pop culture connection between wrestling icons like Hulk Hogan, Macho Man Randy Savage, and The Rock but, I never knew how dark and twisted the wrestling world was behind the scene. For such a fun and outrageous sport, there is a lot of evil shit that goes down once the show is over. If you enjoy pop culture and murder mysteries, this is a great show to binge. Also no prior wrestling knowledge is required.

THE MANDALORIAN – I am a HUGE Star Wars fan. I mean I have a Darth Vader tattoo for christ’s sake. However, I HATED these last two Star Wars sequel movies and I’m not the biggest fan of the prequels. I can watch the original trilogy all the way through, and have, countless times. Thankfully, The Mandalorian truly makes up for the shitty movies that came after the originals and even evokes that feeling and incorporates elements of the classic Star Wars style. Also I think it’s so awesome that Jon Favreau has gained so much success and respect as a director, I feel like a proud parent. I can’t wait to see what he does with all the other Star Wars series spin offs.

THE OFFICE – If you don’t know what The Office is… get off my blog NOW! I’ve watched The Office dozens of times, but I just wanted to binge all nine seasons before Netflix took it away from us forever (because I’m not downloading Peacock).

Elite Urbanite’s Favorite Movies

Elite Urbanite’s Favorite Movies

Anytime I meet new friends, co-workers, or even when I go on dates, the common ice breaker is “what is your favorite movie?” For years I didn’t know what the answer was, because honestly there are so many movies that I haven’t seen. No particular reason other than the fact that I have the attention span of a baby squirrel, therefore I CANNOT sit through some of these nearly 3 hour movies. Now at the ripe age of 25 I finally have a (very short) list of my favorite movies. These movies are ones I can, and have, watched over and over again. The common theme with these movies, despite the difference in their subject matter is positivity. I love movies that either encompass some sort of lesson, or are just down right silly! I’ve probably seen some of these dozens of times because I know they’ll cheer me up if I’m in a shitty mood.

I was gonna give y’all a top 5, but fuck it… let’s make it even and go with 6! Check out my list below and watch my favorite scene from each film!

🎥 🍿 🎞

KILL BILL VOL. 1

Kill Bill Vol. 1 (2003) – My dad was the one who actually suggested I watched this movie. As a kid, I would always sit and watch all of the Old Bruce Lee films with him on repeat. So obviously he knew that I would love Kill Bill. I was pretty much speechless the first time I watched this movie. I LOVE how badass and understandably vengeful Beatrix Kiddo was. I mean if a group of your trusted allies tried to kill you, put you in a coma that almost killed your baby, and then lived to tell the tale…. wouldn’t you want to seek revenge on those motherfuckers too?! Despite the fight scenes and occasional gore, her “never give up” attitude has always stuck with me. This is where Kobe Bryant actually got his nickname “The Black Mamba” from! Though this is my top choice, it wasn’t hard to pick a favorite scene. Beatrix or “The Bride” let’s all her badassery out on The Crazy 88’s AND Gogo, proving to O-Ren Ishii she is NOT the one to be played with!

WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS

What We Do In the Shadows (2015) – This one was another family suggestion, this time from my silly brother! I was a little apprehensive at first because most of the time vampire movies are a little corny. However this Aussie Vampire mockumentary is one of the silliest movies I’ve ever seen. Honestly I was cracking up just trying to find a clip to include in this list. The humor is definitely for a very specific and quirky audience, and it is right up my alley. Often times we see vampire’s portrayed as brooding and mysterious, but this group of vamps are quite the opposite. The clip below is the perfect example, Vampire Style!

BLAZING SADDLES

Blazing Saddles (1974) – Now this particular movie has gotten a lot of backlash with the world coming increasingly more progressive by the minute. I get that people like to go back and call out how certain themes in old movies were problematic, but the difference with this movie is, that is the EXACT reason why it was made! Mel Brooks made this film to spoof Western films (and actually most films during the time this one was made) and their blatant racism. Because I know that this is clearly a spoof and not meant to offend anyone, I’m able to watch this anytime I need a good laugh and a dose of reality. My favorite scene in particular is when Madeline Kahn’s character Lili Von Shtupp does a very lackadaisical performance describing how tired she is of, ahem “dating” countless men, it’s pure comedic genius.

WILLY WONKA & THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY

Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (1971) – This is one of these movies that I can say I’ve seen way more than 20 times in my life, it always puts me in a good mood! It’s a feel good story with a lesson that still applies to adulthood, cheating and having a terrible attitude will get you nowhere in life… it may even get you trapped in a chocolate factory! Besides the heartwarming plot, I was always so blown away with Gene Wilder’s whimsical portrayal of the candy magnate. As a kid, the clip below used to scare the shit out of me… now, I love it!!! It shows just how extremely outlandish and wildly unpredictable Mr. Wonka was! (Honestly those bad ass kids deserved a good fright.)

BEETLEJUICE

Beetlejuice (1988) – Another whimsical classic! My favorite holiday is Halloween, so of course this my go-to movie during spooky season. However the problem is, that I love this movie so much I just end up watching it over and over again and never get to the other ones on my list! I’m a big fan of Tim Burton and his extreme attention to detail. Also, I was introduced to the lovely music of Harry Belafonte because of this very scene. Though I love Halloween, I’m not huge on horror films, I’m a bit of a chicken. Luckily, this movie is the perfect amount of dark and quirky, which actually happen to be two words I use to describe myself.

THE WIZARD OF OZ

The Wizard of Oz (1939) – I’m a bit of a dreamer so this movie has always resonated with me. I constantly think of what life would be like if I woke up in a completely different world filled with such vibrancy, color, and kindness! Of course, I’ve gotten older so my interests have changed in some ways (i.e. Kill Bill), but this movie will and always has made me teary eyed every time I’ve watched it (which is possibly over 100 times). Though there have been countless remakes and spin offs, nothing will compare to the original. It has a 98% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, a nearly perfect score that I couldn’t agree with more. This very scene shows how ahead of their time they were!

I MAY DESTROY YOU

I MAY DESTROY YOU

Every woman should be watching I May Destroy You! ESPECIALLY black women. Though we are still in the midst of the series, audiences are in awe of this powerful yet comedic television series. Michaela Coel is best known for starring in Chewing Gum and a few episodes of Black Mirror, but her directorial debut has propelled her stardom to new levels.

Coel stars as Arabella, a young author who became famous after her tweets went viral. One night she decides to take a break from writing and goes out to get some drinks with friends. When she wakes up the next day, she can’t recount her steps. She does vaguely remember a situation where she was in the bathroom stall, with a man over her, and a thudding noise in the background. When she finally puts the pieces together, she realizes she has been raped.

I don’t want to give too much away seeing as the season still in progress, but the series shows Arabella’s journey to find her rapist and herself. Based on the traumatic events she experienced, she must re-evaluate the people around her and her relationship with her family.

What I found really compelling was that the series touched upon how black women and gay men often deal with stigmas when it comes to sexual assault. So often we see white women speaking out about their experiences with sexual assault, but when black women or gay men try to do the same they aren’t met with the same response. Black women often told that it was their fault the assault occurred, this is because we are constantly being over sexualized. We are always told to be strong and brush things off, so Arabella struggles to fully heal from her rape because she doesn’t want to appear weak. And when her friend Kwame, a gay black man, tried to report his assault, he wasn’t even taken seriously which causes him to internalize his pain.

When I first started to watch it, I thought it was going to be along the lines of Euphoria. I wasn’t really able to get past the first episode of Euphoria because I felt like I was a little too old to be watching it. I May Destroy You however, has deeper themes that people can relate to and connect with. SO many women are victims of rape or assault. I am not, but this show is truly a great representation of how a woman, more importantly a Black woman, deals with the trauma of rape and works through the healing process. I think it’s important for people to watch this show because far too many women are victims of assault. It’s extremely important for victims to learn how to properly deal with their trauma, but also how to be a supportive friend or family member through this process.

I May Destroy You is available on HBO, HBO Max, and HBO GO with new episodes every Monday night at 10PM.

BLACK IS KING

BLACK IS KING

I am still blown away by Beyonce’s visual album, BLACK IS KING, on Disney Plus. If you haven’t watched it yet… stop what you’re doing and go watch it right now!

Beyonce never misses (obviously, she is perfection). The mixture of stunning visuals, upbeat music, and celebration of black culture makes for an overall powerful experience that everyone should be a part of.

BLACK IS KING is Beyonce’s retelling of the film, The Lion King, from the point of view of a young black boy. She previously released an album when the live action movie came out in 2019, but decided to bless us with the deluxe version. I really love how Beyonce mixed elements of afrobeat into this album. A few of my favorites are Find Your Way Back, Ja Ara E, Already, My Power, Mood 4 Eva and Nile. I also thought it was great to see Beyonce to acknowledge black artists from different regions such as Burna Boy, WizKid, Shatta Wale, Oumou Sangare, Moonchild Sanelly, and Yemi Alade. You can listen to the whole album below!

Not only was the music fantastic, but so were the visuals! The film was filled with bright colors, stunning symmetry, and plenty of homages to black history. At one point Beyonce was literally swimming with synchronized swimmers, came up from the water and was STILL FLAWLESS. HOW??? (I even wrote in my notes “how do you come up from the water and still look good???”). I’ve included some of my favorite visuals below as well.

We also got to see several special appearances from Kelly Rowland, Pharrell, Naomi Campbell, Lupita Nyongo. We even get to see Jay-Z, Miss Tina, Blue Ivy, Rumi, and Sir who she actually dedicated the film to!

My favorite part of the film was the constant gems that were dropped. A few that really stuck out to me were; “step into your essence”, “we were beauty before they knew what beauty was”, and lastly “something about walking in the room with your head high and not disrespecting your crown by bowing your neck”. It’s SO important for black people to hear these affirmations, because we are constantly being torn down. With everything going on in the world it was really uplifting to see black culture be shown in such an artistic and appreciative way.

GO WATCH BLACK IS KING ASAP!

Westworld III!

The trailer just dropped for the third season of Westworld! Coincidentally my brother had asked me on Saturday if Westworld was ever coming back, I guess we’ve got our answer. If you have not yet seen or even heard of Westworld, you are missing out. Now that Game of Thrones is over I’m excited to get back into another incredible show.

The plot is derived from the 1973 sci-fi Western movie of the same name. The first season had similar characteristics to the movie, it focused mainly on saloons and cowboys, but the second season broadened it’s horizons and spread out to different “worlds”. It looks like they will be expanding further in season three!

The newest season does not come out until 2020, which gives me and other fans of the show plenty of time to catch up on the episodes. I am a huge fan of the Nolan Brothers work so I am excited to see where they take the next season. Take a look at the trailer here: Westworld III.

Game of Thrones: The End is Coming

Sunday is right around the corner so you know what that means…. Game of Thrones! As many of you know, this is the final season so plenty of people are speculating how it will all end. For a show with so much detail and time put into it’s story line, it’s actually quite difficult to guess what’ll happen next.

However, show runners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss created a Spotify playlist titled “Game of Thrones: The End is Coming” where each song title alludes to subtle hints at how it may all end. Of course we’ll never really know how it ends until it you know, ends… but it’s still fun to guess!

Check out the playlist below to see if you can figure out which songs apply to the plots, characters, and story lines of the final season of Game of Thrones!

 

MET GALA 2019

IT’S FINALLY HERE… the Met Gala! If you are unaware the Met Gala occurs every year and is a fundraising event held by the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute in NYC. Top designers create extravagant pieces based on the year’s theme for different celebrities.

This year’s theme was “Camp”. The idea was based of of Susan Sontag’s 1964 essay “Notes on Camp”. Camp essentially is the art of being “extra”, but in the best way possible, so over-doing it is encouraged! I loooove the idea of camp and have always been inspired by figures like the Spice Girls, Cher, Prince, and many more who perfectly exhibit what it means to be “Camp”. 

I’m so glad so many people went above and beyond on the pink carpet, below are my favorite looks from the night!