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Top 5 Love Lessons from “The Bachelor” (Prince Farming’s Season Premiere)

January 6, 2015

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photo via ABC’s The Bachelor

It’s been a long, grueling wait, but last night we finally got our fix with the live season premiere of ABC’s “The Bachelor”! This season features “Prince Farming” and Bachelorette runner-up, Chris Soules — a guy who’s so deep in the Iowa boondocks, the closest Starbucks is over an hour away! Absolutely bone-chilling. But somehow, the producers were able to find not 20, not 25, but 30 brave women willing to marry him and move there, basically sight (and site) unseen. Let the dating mistakes begin, be made, and be learned from!:

  1. Never admit in public, let alone to your date, that as an adult you shamelessly live with your mother, don’t know how to cook for yourself, and are effing crazy. In fact, forget about admitting such things, don’t DO such things in the first place if you want to be even remotely dateable. (Ahem, Amanda.)
  2. Baby Voice + Vocal Fry = an incredibly short shelf life for any potential relationship. Even if this is how you talk naturally (and we are NOT convinced that this sound occurs spontaneously in nature), you must take measures to correct this unholy mutation: vocal coaching, vocal chord surgery, testosterone treatments, etc. (You know who you are.)
  3. Using gimmicks on a first date to make yourself memorable often seems desperate and pathetic, rather than creative and quirky. Don’t try so hard to separate yourself from the pack, just be your sincere, genuine self. If a situation naturally arises for you to demonstrate your singing ability, your breakdancing skills, or your cadaver tissue excavation, great! But don’t force it. Quick rule of thumb: if you require props for first dates, you’re doing it wrong. Exception to the rule: small, heartfelt tokens may — we said, may — endear your date to you, but the bigger the prop or the more performative it makes you, the worse off you’re going to be perceived by said date (and the rest of the nation, if they happen to be watching).
  4. We’ve said it a thousand times before, we’ll say it again: Alcoholically speaking, pace yourself on a date! A drink or two — or even three when the date lasts until the freakin’ sun comes up — is fine to calm your nerves, slightly loosen inhibitions and give yourself a little liquid confidence. But please don’t get sloshed on your dates. It’s not safe: you could get sexually assaulted, you could fall from a high height, you could embarrass yourself on national television, you could suffer the wrath of 29 judgy women all vying for the attention of the man you’re dating who will happily and publicly flatten your character with a steamroller!
  5. The limit on dirty jokes you can tell on a first date is ONE. Even then, we highly recommend testing the waters first before you drop the bomb, i.e. don’t let it be the very first thing out of your potty mouth. We’re all for a good crotch joke, but knowing when, where and how often is key. As with alcohol and first-date tongue, moderation rules.

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35 Ways Mindy Kaling Won the Internet in 2014

December 29, 2014

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photo via @MindyKaling

People often say they love Mindy Kaling because she is “relatable,” but we’re going to avoid that word because we think it’s kind of a backhanded compliment. We can imagine the Underminer saying it. Like, the only reason you love Mindy Kaling is because she doesn’t make you feel bad about your muffin top or the fact that you drunk-dialed your ex last night. Then again, we suppose there are worse reasons to have an imaginary friendship with a celebrity.

We love Mindy Kaling because she is wicked funny and simultaneously self-deprecating while not being afraid of a little self-promotion. We love her because she’s her own freakin’ boss. We love her because she fantasizes about being the oldest sister in a Jane Austen novel, with Taylor Swift as the youngest sister. (We didn’t even know until she said it that it’s totally our fantasy, too.) We love her because she told Howard Stern that she can never say no when someone suggests shots. And we love her because she confessed her B.J. Novak crush on the Howard Stern show and then right after, she went on Twitter and was all like, “Um @bjnovak I talked a little about you on @HowardStern.” Who can’t, well, relate to that?

Fine! Fine. She’s relatable. But she’s also hilarious about life, alcohol, and the pursuit of the opposite sex. Here are our 35 favorite @MindyKaling tweets from 2014:

 

1. Sure he texted me Merry Christmas but will he text me happy Boxing Day

 

2. When i have a crush on someone I pester them until they die

 

3. I’m watching The Notebook for the first time. I don’t understand why marrying handsome rich sweet war hero James Marsden is so weep-inducing

 

4. All I wanted to do was place a kiss on his suprasternal notch

 

5. If your date orders a California roll and vegetable tempura you so know she is totally basic but you are also getting laid

 

6. “Why the fuck not me?” should be your motto

 

7. If I was blind I could tell who the hot girls in the nail salon were by how boring their stories are

 

8. Before you’re a bae you have to be a bb

 

9. Is it weird to say, I wish Bruno Mars was my son

 

10. “Have you dined with us before?” No, but I PROMISE you I can figure this out with context clues, babe

 

11. Girls, the lesson is, create a tv show and use it as your reason for needing emails and phone numbers. Like Seth Rogen and Kevin Reilly, say

 

12. I love my @ELLEmagazine cover. It made me feel glamorous & cool. And if anyone wants to see more of my body, go on thirteen dates with me.

 

13. Holy shit I’m the age of those people on thirtysomething

 

14. Don’t worry about having perfect taste. People with perfectly curated taste usually have no original voice.

 

15. #humblebrag me, baby, like it’s 2012

 

16. For LA women, Saturday is the day you read, catch up with family and friends, and rip unwanted hair off of places on your body

 

17. leave a slice of carrot cake at my door if you love me

 

18. Ugh I have so much work, I should just gone girl myself

 

19. Gone Girl is a verb now

 

20. We all died of excitement because in the apartment across the street, a naked man was changing his duvet cover #sohostories

 

21. Five writers in the soho area want frozen yogurt delivered to us while we watch a documentary about murderers

 

22. September is a summer month, not a fall month, I have been thinking this for years but never said it aloud because it’s boring

 

23. I like you if every song is about you even the ones that make no sense like losing my religion

 

24. Drive sober, kiss tipsy, pack suitcases drunk as hell, has worked for me

 

25. Yawning at a dinner party ’cause you’re bored is rude but saying “yawn” at boring dinner party is awesome

 

26. In my romantic comedy movie set in New York our heroine is constantly running into exes while trying on glasses at Warby Parker

 

27. I wore a cape last night and wasn’t dramatic, so that’s a good start to a new year!

 

28. the melancholy cuteness of people in their 20s playing house

 

29. Yeah autocorrect I meant gu not hi

 

30. If you got it flaunt it, if you don’t got it, flaunt it

 

31. In high school, if I was up late studying, my dad would make me buttered toast and didn’t go to sleep until I did. I wanna be like that.

 

32. Let me get this straight they made Bradley Cooper the goddamned raccoon

 

33. Horrified to realize that crisp chicken skin is 100% my favorite food

 

34. God I feel so superior drinking my coconut water

 

35. The central unresolved question of my adult life is: how on earth does everyone become friends with everyone else so quickly?

 

 

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New Year’s Kisses in New York

December 29, 2014

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Times Square is about the last place we’d want to be on New Year’s Eve, but these folks from Getty seem to be having a good time. Here’s hoping you’ve got someone to smooch in the first few seconds of the first day of the new year, no matter where you are!


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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25 Romantic Comedies Turned Very, Very Scary

December 23, 2014

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We’re suckers for a good Twitter meme, even if they do make us feel like the clumsy kid who always gets picks last in gym class (i.e. when we contribute to a meme in what we consider to be a hilarious fashion, and are met with resounding Twitter silence). But like the clumsy kid in gym class in a John Hughes movie, we refuse to give up. Our favorite Twitter meme this week is #MakeAComedyScary. We happen to think that an unhealthy proportion of romantic comedies have a terrifying approach to love, dating, and sex, so this one is perfect for us! Below, you will find our top 25 romantic comedies turned very, very scary. Oh, and you if want to make us feel like Molly Ringwald in Sixteen Candles, you should go ahead and follow us on Twitter @EMandLO.

1. Harold & Maude 2: Love in a Morgue

2. It Happened One Night But Nobody Believed Her

3. Pretty Woman Doesn’t Know She Has Chlamydia

4. My Big Fat Gay Wedding (okay, so this one is only terrifying to Republicans)

5. The Porn Shop Around the Corner (ditto)

6. (500) Days of Zooey Deschanel

7. The 40-Year-Old Virgin Suicide

8. Pretty in Pink Because She’s Been Culturally Conditioned to Shun Blue

9. Four Weddings and Four Funerals, Then One More Wedding

10. When Harry Met Sally’s Expectations

11. How to Lose a Guy By Doing Everything Cosmopolitan Magazine Tells You To

12. 10 Things I Hate About Your Teddy Bear Collection

13. Breakfast at Bill Cosby’s

14. Bridget Jones’s Red Room of Pain

15. Forgetting Sarah Marshall’s Safe Word

16. Knocked Up in a State with Restricted Access to Abortion

17. My Best Friend’s Shotgun Wedding to a Guy Who Thought She Was on the Pill

18. Love Actually Doesn’t Conquer Mismatched Libidos

19. Three Republican Men and a Fetus

20. Sleepless in Seattle 2: Crabs vs. Bedbugs

21. Some Like It in Furry Animal Costumes

22. The Princess Child Bride

23. Say Anything So Long As It’s About Me

24. Clueless About Sex Ed

25. 13 Going on 30: Unrated

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Retro Mistletoe Pics

December 18, 2014

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Just to prove we’re not total Scrooges when it comes to old-timey holiday lovin’ — as perhaps recently suggested by our brutal take-down of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” — we’ve collected some cute, retro, mistletoe images from Getty to get you in the mood, Christmas or otherwise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A Line-by-Line Take Down of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”

December 16, 2014

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The song performed in the 1949 musical “Neptune’s Daughter”

’Tis the season to be sexist, with the “traditional” Xmas pop played on an eternal loop, reinforcing old gender stereotypes about boys only wanting cowboy boots and guns while girls insist on walking, talking dollies. There’s the infernal Love, Actually movie which, despite its charming British accents and treacly warm-fuzzy moments, is mind-bogglingly offensive in its depiction of women as nothing more than the embodiments of men’s romantic and/or sexual fantasies. But the worst offender — particularly this year, when it seems the epidemic of sexual assault and violence against women is finally getting the media attention it deserves — is the classic winter song “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.”

To be fair, the tune was written in 1944, long before The Pill, Roe v. Wade, Free to Be You and Me — and only a measly 24 years after women got the right to vote. There was “no such thing” as marital rape back then (in fact, it wasn’t until 19-freakin-93 that marital rape became illegal in all 50 states). If you think our date rape culture is bad now, imagine it back in the 40s!

Which begs the question: if our rape problem is still so bad today, 70 years later, but we’re at least aware of said problem, then why does this creepy song still get so much play? Most of its new versions have been recorded in the last decade, with three new versions released in the past year! Yes, it’s a catchy tune, with some linguistically clever back-and-forths that make for a fun (or at least, fun-to-record) duet — even we can’t help but sing along! But in the age of campus rape awareness (finally!) and Bill Cosby allegations, how can so many contemporary artists (and listeners) not be more conflicted about a song that basically sanctions date rape, roofies and all?

Let’s break it down:

I really can’t stay / But, baby, it’s cold outside

I’ve got to go away / But, baby, it’s cold outside

This evening has been / Been hoping that you’d drop in

So very nice / I’ll hold your hands they’re just like ice

Okay, she states her intentions clearly and they’re immediately met with his undermining tactics and pressure. And did he just subtly suggest that she’s “frigid”? Nice negging.

My mother will start to worry / Beautiful, what’s your hurry

My father will be pacing the floor / Listen to the fireplace roar

If her mother and father are waiting for her, then she’s probably still living at home — she may not even be old enough to legally drink (or legally give sexual consent!).

So really I’d better scurry /  Beautiful, please don’t hurry

Never trust someone you’re still getting to know who calls you “Beautiful” instead of your actual name — you are not an individual, you’re a notch.

Well, maybe just half a drink more / Put some records on while I pour

Do not let him do the pouring! Stay with your drink at all times.

The neighbors might think / Baby, it’s bad out there

Say what’s in this drink / No cabs to be had out there

How can listeners not be picturing Bill Cosby in a garish Christmas sweater right now?

I wish I knew how / Your eyes are like starlight now

To break this spell / I’ll take your hat, your hair looks swell

The incessant flattery is a pretty creepy attempt to break down her will.

I ought to say no, no, no, sir / Mind if I move in closer

Okay, it admittedly gets a little fuzzy here (but maybe that’s because of what he put in her drink!). She shouldn’t mince words, she should say “no” flat out — and she does, later in the song! But here, let’s not blame the victim. And, yes, good for him that he asked permission to move in closer, but does anyone listening believe he would respect her wishes and not inch nearer if she said, “Uh, thanks, but I’m good.”?

At least I’m gonna say that I tried / What’s the sense of hurting my pride

I really can’t stay / Baby, don’t hold out

[Both] Baby, it’s cold outside

Ugh, now we’re getting into the tired, well-trod territory of the sexual double standard: how women need to protect their reputations and deny their own sexuality, while men have to be virulent sexual creatures as a matter of pride. Add to that his underhanded attempt to appeal to her socially-constructed feminine desire to be accommodating and inoffensive and friendly. And please, let’s not use the Blurred Lines, I-know-you-want-it excuse that she obviously would like to stay and have sex with him but can’t because of the cultural mores of the time: a person can be conflicted about their feelings, but ultimately assert their intentions clearly, as she does — and those intentions need to be respected.

I simply must go / Baby, it’s cold outside

The answer is no / Baby, it’s cold outside

There it is! Couldn’t be clearer.

The welcome has been / How lucky that you dropped in

So nice and warm / Look out the window at the storm

He’s starting to sound like Kathy Bates in Misery.

My sister will be suspicious / Gosh your lips look delicious

My brother will be there at the door / Waves upon a tropical shore

My maiden aunt’s mind is vicious / Gosh your lips are delicious

But maybe just a cigarette more /Never such a blizzard before

So the lesson for boys is: ignore her, break her argument down at every turn, steal a kiss, and that’s when you’ll start to get somewhere sexually. Classy.

I got to get home / But, baby, you’d freeze out there

Say lend me a coat /  It’s up to your knees out there

You’ve really been grand / I thrill when you touch my hand

But don’t you see / How can you do this thing to me

Blue balls are no longer a valid defense in the court of public opinion.

There’s bound to be talk tomorrow / Think of my life long sorrow

And the lesson learned by girls is: your number one priority is not to be perceived as a slut.

At least there will be plenty implied / If you caught pneumonia and died

When all else fails, use the threat of imminent death as your P.U.A. power play. Isn’t that one of Mystery’s moves outlined in the The Game?

I really can’t stay / Get over that old doubt

[Both] Baby, it’s cold

[Both] Baby, it’s cold outside

The answer to the question of why this is now a Christmas “standard” is, of course, that sexism is alive and well today as the one remaining prejudice that’s still socially acceptable to entertain publicly. Because it’s funny. Because it’s no big deal. Hey, lighten up! Tell that to the women in this New York Times magazine article who said no, were ignored, and froze during their on-campus assaults.

The only way this song even remotely works in this day and age is with the roles reversed: a man singing the call and a woman singing the return — though still questionable, at least it’s subversive and philosophically interesting. They did it in the 1949 musical Neptune’s Daughter, which features both versions and seems pretty revolutionary for the time (the pushy man is pretty sleazy; the pushy woman is pure slapstick). And those recordings are happening more often. But which of the Zooey Deschanel versions are you more familiar with: the She & Him one which turns the tables, or the traditional version with her and Leon Redbone (from the movie Elf)?

And that’s why, to all the traditional (read: sexist) versions we hear on the radio, we say “Bah, humbug!”

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Blog Snog: 9 Ways Love Changes Your Brain

December 12, 2014

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photo via YourTango


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“150 Shades of Play” Is Now Available on Kindle!

December 11, 2014

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Our latest book, now available in a discreet Kindle edition

We get it: 150 Shades of Play: A Beginner’s Guide to Kink is not necessarily the book you want to be caught reading on the bus, or during your lunch break, and it’s definitely not the book you want sitting on your nightstand when your nosy mother-in-law (“Oops! You mean this isn’t the guest bathroom?!”) comes to visit for the holidays. Yes, we’re looking at you, Olive Kitteridge. Dear readers, you asked, and asked again, and you even said pretty please, and so we’ve finally got around to releasing our most recent book on Kindle. It’s on sale now for $4.99 on Amazon — or FREE if you subscribe to Amazon’s KindleUnlimited service. Oh, and if you already happen to own 150 Shades in print, then the Kindle version is a bargain 99 cents.

And here’s why the Kindle version is worth checking out, whether or not you’re already familiar with the book: Every entry is completely linked! Simply click on any bolded word in the text throughout the book that you want to learn more about, and you will be taken directly to that term’s entry in our kinky encyclopedia!

A refresher course on our book: If you — or someone you know — loved the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy by E.L. James but wished there been a little more guidance and information, then 150 Shades is for you! This helpful (and hilarious, if we do say so ourselves) illustrated A-to-Z guide to kink for beginners includes:

  • How to’s on role play, dirty talk, spanking, bondage & more
  • Important safety info missing from the Fifty Shades trilogy
  • A voyeuristic peek at all of Christian Grey’s “hard limits”
  • Tips on shopping for top-of-the-line kinky accoutrements
  • Notes on what the Fifty series got wrong about BDSM
  • Links between all terms for easy navigation of related topics
  • Everything beginners need to know to get their kink on!

So don’t hesitate! Get it for a loved one, or a lusted-after one, for Xmas (or should we say XXXmas?).  Not only will you be giving yourself, your partner or your friends a great [pick one: sexy / kinky / funny / outrageous / romantic / informative / entertaining / gag ] gift, you’ll be giving your two favorite friendly neighborhood sex writers a gift, too.

But don’t just take our word for what a great read it is; check out some of the praise the book has already received:

“I consider Em & Lo my adopted sex daughters, and they have made me proud once again with ’150 Shades of Play.’ Their sound advice, smart writing, and sense of humor empower women to give kink a try, safely and realistically.”
— Betty Dodson, sex educator icon & author of “Sex for One”

“For readers looking to tap their erotic potential, ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ is only the tip of the sexual iceberg. With their signature sense of humor and commitment to educate, Em & Lo take readers on a guided journey into titillating, and often taboo, territories and expertly navigate a diverse landscape of thrilling possibility.”
— Ian Kerner, PhD, GoodInBed.com founder & CNN columnist

“Unlike ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ this was fun to read, informative and didn’t take eight chapters to get to the sex part. Em & Lo have yet again taught me more about sex than all the extensive research I’ve done by watching porn.”
— Joel Stein, TIME magazine columnist & author of “Man Made”

So what are you waiting for? Have yourself a Merry Little Kinkmas!



Blog Snog: Sex Acts As Represented by Thanksgiving Dinner Dishes

November 21, 2014

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photo via The Frisky



This Week in Great Subliminal Phalluses from History

November 20, 2014

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We just finished Sam Harris’s Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion for our book club last night. It was a spirited debate, which went a little something like this:

- Harris is self-centered, arrogant and off-putting.
- But you just don’t know him like we do.
- He condones drug use.
- And that’s wrong why?
- Religion does good.
- Religion does bad.

Wine was drunk, feelings were hurt, and someone misplaced their Diva Cup (for real). But we all went home agreeing on two points:

  1. We would all try to meditate more (at least more deliberately than zoning out for 20 seconds on the toilet).
  2. There was definitely a hidden penis in one of the illustrations in the book.

In the fourth chapter on meditation, Harris talks about how one British contemplative was inspired to describe “what it’s like to glimpse the nonduality of consciousness” (duh) after seeing a self-portrait by the 19th century Austrian physicist/philosopher, Ernst Mach, “who had the clever idea of drawing himself as he appeared from a first-person point of view.” And here Harris includes the drawing:

Now, maybe it’s a symptom of writing a sex blog for a living. Maybe our subconscious was at work in mysterious ways. Maybe, like the optic blind spot, there’s a phallic symbol blind spot that most people aren’t aware of, but sexually enlightened folks like us can see through. Or maybe we’re just seeing what we want to see. As Harris attests, the brain works in incredible, complicated ways. (We’ve juvenilely highlighted the dick in question with color below.)

Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion by Sam Harris is available on Amazon.com