Posts Tagged ‘Erin Elzo’

Many companies try to improve their green reputation. Levi Strauss & Company is one of those, but it’s trying too hard. Great for them that they’re helping create nonprofit programs to save water and provide water-saving options relating to their products. Washing your jeans less and using cold water are some of these changes. One of Levi Strauss’ more innovative idea was introducing “a brand featuring stone-washed denim smoothed with rocks but no water.”

As fantastic as that sounds, there’s a limit. That was when I read this part of the New York Times article on their initiatives:

“To customers seeing further advice, Levi Strauss suggests washing jeans rarely, if at all – the theory being that putting them in the freezer will kill germs that cause them to smell.”


Sex is a dirty word. That’s what most kids in the U.S. grow up thinking. Dirty as in something taboo that we’re not supposed to say or do. Is that right, though?

Growing up in a multicultural household, it wasn’t something my parents pushed under the rug until I was older. As uncomfortable as it was, they explained “how it works” to me at a young age.

In a recent Salon article, Thomas Rogers addresses the question. Apparently, the Dutch are way ahead of us and they “have dramatically reduced adolescent pregnancies, abortions and STDs.” University of Massachusetts Assistant Professor Amy T. Schalet studied the difference in the comfort level of American parents v. Dutch parents for her new book, and found that the latter don’t panic at the thought of their kids having sex.

I would have to agree with the Dutch parenting style. No parent really wants to imagine his or her child having sex, but the reality is that your child is (most likely) going to eventually lose his or her virginity. If you make it such a taboo subject that they can’t come talk to you about it, then it could be even worse in terms of their sexual education and awareness.

This is particularly true for those who never have to take a sex education class in school. Yes, we all learn about this and that from our friends, TV, the Internet and other oh-so-reliable sources during our developmental period of life. But, really, how much of that is truly accurate or the right information we should be learning. I’d say maybe not even half.

Well, I guess there are always books written by sex educators  you could turn to.

-Erin Elzo

We’ve all heard that good looks can get you far (well, farther than the average-looking Joe). Sad, but it seems to be generally true.

Now, ladies have another aesthetic demand to live up to besides our (hopefully) good, or at least decent, genetic makeup. We have to think about our applied makeup. You know, the ones the majority of females draw, smack, powder and all that jazz on her face most mornings, if not all. Lovely, isn’t it?

For some—though I would hope all—that do wear makeup on a daily basis, we’re choosing to do it because we like it. Pure and simple, we enjoy putting on and wearing makeup. It’s fun.

However, now it might not be nearly as fun since it might be required for us to do it in order to have the best chance of advancing in our professional fields. It has been reported that based on recent studies, women who wear makeup are more likely to be seen as competent, intelligent, warm, trustworthy and approachable.

I don’t think being barefaced would impede your success in the long-run, but I have to concede that it could make it more difficult. It’s a woman’s choice whether she wants to put the time and effort every morning into putting on makeup, but I think it should also be said that it doesn’t have to necessarily be pancake makeup.

A little concealer and eyeliner can go a long way. No one wants to see a mask in the office either. So, ladies, it’s up to you to decide what’s best. The studies are out there telling us to wear the black kohl on our eyes and paint our lips.

What’s your take on it?

-Erin Elzo

In a sea of uniform H&M and Forever 21 outfits, it’s not always easy to stand out. That’s probably why DIY fashion is increasing in popularity. DIYers are replicating the looks of big name designers like Dolce & Gabbana.

I’d like to say I’m as talented as half the people that post on DIY blogs, but I know I wouldn’t be fooling anyone. I’ve always been (somewhat) secretly jealous of people creative enough to do that kind of DIY that looks completely professional and store-bought.

Maybe that’s why the handmade products on Etsy sell well and get such rave reviews from the females in my life. The words used in reference to these products are generally something along the lines of “a little pricey, but totally worth it.”

DIY style has been hailed as a movement by many, including a close friend who can knit an awesome beanie, poof and all. She tried to explain to me how she made the poof ball at the top of the beanie the other day. I could just feel my head getting heavy as my mind tried to wrap itself around this concept that made so much sense to her.

“It’s real simple,” she said. Yeah, okay, I’m just going to sit in the corner, twiddling my thumbs, now.

-Erin Elzo

Tension is high over Initiative 26 (the Personhood Amendment) in Mississippi. Voters will cast their votes for or against this controversial amendment on Nov. 8.

If passed, the Mississippi Constitution will be amended to “define the word ‘person’ or ‘persons’ […] to include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning or the functional equivalent thereof.” Irin Carmon cited the ban on “common forms of birth control” as one of the potential effects of this amendment in her article for the online news site

An attack on the pill is not an attack on abortion, it’s an attack on a woman’s right to choose when she wants to have a child.  The claim by the Personhood movement of extremist pro-lifers is that the prevention of any eggs from being fertilized at all is equivalent to abortion.


I’m a sucker for marketing. If we’re being honest, most of you Jerks out there are too. It’s nothing to be ashamed of (usually). It’s all about the presentation—what colors are used, clever slogans, that sort of thing.

This is why it was no surprise that so many of my friends have fallen under the spell of the adorable mini-treats at Starbucks. The line of Starbucks Petites includes cupcakes, lemon squares and cake pops–among a variety of other delicious minis. I resisted for awhile, but finally gave in when a particularly persistent friend insisted I try just one cupcake. My demise? The Carrot Cake Mini Cupcake. 190 calories of (almost) bite-size deliciousness.


Is he better than your kids?

If you haven’t visited this website, then you need to. It’s absolutely hilarious. Yes, the author, a 32-year-old computer programmer named Maddox, is judgmental of kids’ art, and yes, he is completely unapologetic and blunt to a fault. But, that’s the whole point.

Many people have criticized him for being an asshole and unoriginal, among other less-than-flattering terms. He just laughs them off, and includes a page for hate mail on his original website. He even corrects the generally bad grammar that most of the submitted mail seems to have. Were these people really that much in a rush to bash him that they couldn’t stop to re-read their own writing?That’s just feeding Maddox more material to work with—which, in turn, gives viewers more reasons to visit his site.

People really shouldn’t take this kind of online commentary so seriously. It’s meant to be funny and provoke a reaction, which he is obviously pretty successful at doing. Besides, he has a point, a lot of kids’ art does suck. A lot of adults’ art does too. Would people have had as strong of a reaction if he’d criticized adults’ artwork? Probably not.

Looking at the bigger picture, I seriously doubt any little youngins are going to be searching for their artwork online. So let’s lay off the man, yeah?

-Erin Elzo

Imaginary sex, plus an audience.

You’ve heard of Air Guitar World Championships. Now, let me introduce you to the Air Sex World Championships. Bimonthly Air Sex competitions begain in 2007 in the Alamo Drafthouse of Austin, Texas. The Alamo Drafthouse has since spread the competition to tour in “over 14 cities across North America” for the World Championships, hosted by comedian Chris Trew.

The official website describes the act as “making sweet and/or filthy love with an imaginary sex partner” to the music selection of your choice in whatever outfit you like. Oh, and it’s on stage in front of a large crowd.  Personally, I don’t know if I could do this, but that’s awesome that so many people have the confidence (and/or exhibitionist desires) to do so. Definite respect.

As the website states in its About page: “The time for you to lose your air virginity is NOW.” For some of you, I’m sure the answer is: Challenge accepted! Get it, kids. Let’s see your best air thrusting and fellatio.

-Erin Elzo

Normal Addiction: Siri

Posted: October 22, 2011 by jerkmag in SURF -- tech
Tags: , , , , , ,

Please, give me another reason to be unhealthily attached to my cell phone. The newest model of the iPhone, the iPhone 4S—guess they didn’t make enough changes to call it the iPhone 5—includes a virtual personal assistant named Siri. As a grad student, I can’t actually afford the latest Apple product–shocker–but based on what I’ve read and the videos I’ve watched, Siri seems freakishly human.

I’m having trouble deciding if that’s good or bad. Let’s be honest, whether we’d like to admit it or not, most of us are addicted to our cell phones. I’m not sure giving us another reason to be more lazy than we already are is such a good idea, but I’ll admit the new technology is definitely convenient and cool…just not cool enough for me to shell out $199. I’ll wait for the iPhone 5.

-Erin Elzo

Johnny Depp: You pretty much either love him or hate him. Personally, I love him. Combine him with Hunter S. Thompson’s “The Rum Diary” and you couldn’t make me more excited. By excited, I mean jumping up and down and screaming with my friend when we first saw the film’s trailer.

The film is based off Thompson’s novel about a journalist who moves to Puerto Rico for his new job and the insanity that ensues. Yes, that’s an extremely simplified summary of the plot, but you really should just read the novel or, at least, go see the film. Needless to say, my friend and I will be fueling our Depp-obsession at midnight on Oct. 28 when the film hits theaters. Jerks are welcome to come with!

-Erin Elzo