Saturday, September 8, 2007

Penn Club Los Angeles strolls down Avenue Q

photo by Carol Rosegg

Today, I went with the Penn Club of Los Angeles to witness puppets dealing with life after college... addressing issues like sex, drinking, and surfing the web for porn.

It was great. It reminded me a bit of Mask and Wig (minus the puppets).

What is the show about?
From the website:
"AVENUE Q is the story of Princeton, a bright-eyed college grad who comes to New York City with big dreams and a tiny bank account. He soon discovers that the only neighborhood in his price range is Avenue Q; still, the neighbors seem nice. There's Brian the out-of-work comedian and his therapist fianceƩ Christmas Eve; Nicky the good-hearted slacker and his roommate Rod -- a Republican investment banker who seems to have some sort of secret; an Internet addict called Trekkie Monster; and a very cute kindergarten teaching assistant named Kate. And would you believe the building's superintendent is Gary Coleman?!? (Yes, that Gary Coleman.) Together, Princeton and his newfound friends struggle to find jobs, dates, and their ever-elusive purpose in life."

There was one number in the show that resonated with me that I know all alumni out there can relate to, entitled "If I Could Go Back to College"...

Click here to watch this clip and see how close this hits home! "1,000 friends" Facebook Challenge: ACCOMPLISHED

Last night at 10:50 pm, Oren Lavie (C'11) became my 1,000th Facebook friend in the "UPenn network". (I didn't exactly hit my September 1 deadline, but I was close)

Thank all of you for adding me as a friend on facebook. Feel free to continue to email me with your story ideas and I'll do my best to feature you guys!

Click here to learn what you need to know to submit a story to me

If you're already a member of facebook, click here to "Introduce Me" to your friends.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Mark Cronin (Eng'86) brings "Himbos" and "Bimbos" to TV on October 9!

What do you get when you mix America’s Next Top Model and Beauty and the Geek?

You get Mark Cronin's (Eng '86, Mask and Wig) new VH1's celebreality show, America’s Most Smartest Model series to debut October 7, 9 pm ET/PT.

Per "The 14 contestants competing on America’s Most Smartest Model will consist of seven men and seven women. During each installment of the 10-episode series, the “himbos” and “bimbos” will have to pass a series challenges designed to test both their brains and beauty.

Only one will claim the show’s $100,000 grand prize as well as the grammatically incorrect title of “America’s Most Smartest Model.”

Fashion expert Mary Alice Stephenson and comedian Ben Stein will serve as hosts for America’s Most Smartest Model, which was one of several new reality shows VH1 ordered in June to help the network expand to a third night of original programming."

Click to see my other posts about Mark Cronin

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Ben gets all the chicks.. always has, always will.

Photo by Amelia Cataldo (C'11)

The guy who plays the part of Ben Franklin has it good! He's been around Penn for quite some time! Apparently, undergrads and grads alike can't seem to keep away from his kite and key!

Speaking of Ben, do you have a picture of yourself with Ben (on the Bench)?

Click here to upload it to our "Me and Ben on the Bench" gallery!

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Thursday, September 6, 2007

Penn Convocation 2011 gets Inspirational

Photo credit: Michael Tomback (C'11)

I found this small clip of the Penn group The Inspiration singing from the 2007 Convocation the other day on campus.

Click here to watch the clip!

Click here to check out 48 more videos of what's going on "Around Campus"

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Be sure to check my coverage of the other on-campus groups by checking out the 5th pulldown at the top of the page ("Penn Groups").

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What is past is present...and future

Same bridge, different years, same deal.

I saw a photo from a facebook Penn friend of mine of the Freshmen Convocation 2007 ceremony and realized how often I've seen this same photo.

We've all seen this same photo.

The people have changed, but the traditions continue as we all celebrate, remember and rejoice in these undergrad milestones.

Take a look at a few shots after the jump (click the "Read More" link below) which define the lifecycle from undergrad to grad:

Penn Freshmen Convocation March (2007)

Penn Junior Hey Day March (1995)
Photo credit: Matt Rosler

Penn Graduation March (2007)
Photo credit: Martin Gordon

Our Namesake: A different perspective

Originally uploaded by cjelli.

A shot no doubt taken from the High Rises.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Penn Pride: You can just eat it up....

Back in the mid 90's when I was at school, the only reason why I went to Hill House dining was because they were edgy and experimental.


They weren't like the others.. they didn't have the popularity of (the now closed) Stouffer dining or the openness of the Class of 1920's dining area.

But they did had one thing going for them.

It was the yogurt machine with the "m&m"/cookie pieces mixed in. It came and it went, but I loved it and will always remember how Hill House took that risk.

Now, apparently, according to Ria Bharadwaj C'11, Hill House has done it again and added a new novely on the that according to Ria can't be found in the other dining establishments ...and this one is sweet!

Click here to check out a photo of what I'm talking about!

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Did you miss my posts from last week?
Click here to check them out!

...A Penn Waffle!

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Scott Shrake (GSAS '96): Ultimate Washington Insider

Have you heard of Arianna Huffington bloggers?

They're out there and one of them is Penn graduate alum Scott Shrake (GSAS'96)

From the Arianna Huffington site, "He [Scott] has been a marketing copyeditor for Borders and Discovery, and a writer for the Wharton School at his alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania, as well as for the University of Michigan. In those jobs and as an editor at and a writer at the Philadelphia City Paper, he has interviewed many famous people, but their fame hasn't rubbed off on him... yet."

So what does he blog about?

Per Scott, "My angle at the HuffPo Politics blog is that even though I moved to D.C. a matter of months ago and I don't work in politics and I'm kind of long in the tooth to be making a new start, I am trying to become the "ultimate Washington insider." I am carving out a niche for myself among Arianna Huffington's bloggers as the guy on the ground in D.C., the one going to parties and court cases and whatnot."

Check out the article he just published on hecklers and learn why he "in a way" may consider himself one.

Click here to check out Scott's archives

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Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Jody Girgenti (C'98) approaches a hit film

What do you get when you mix a sex addicts, a tourist, an immigrant and a psychic?

You get a new Penn alum film.

Film Producer and founder of Ibid Filmworks, Jody Girgenti (C'98) has made the festival rounds with her newly produced award winning film called Approaching Union Square.

The film is a collage of eleven tales capturing thirty-something New Yorkers struggling to find love and connection in the big city. Among the elegantly drawn characters whose lives briefly intersect on a New York City bus are a sex addict, a tourist, an Italian immigrant, and a woman newly awakened to her own psychic powers who senses imminent tragedy.

Some great quotes about the film:
Variety says, “thought-provoking” and “touches with skilled insight.”
A “startlingly accomplished debut … smart, confessional, rueful, funny and sad,” writes the Montreal Gazette.

Stay tuned for this film's TV premiere on the Sundance Channel in 2008!

Click here to check out the trailer

Click here for more info about the film, the festival listings and awards it has racked up so far!

Click here to learn more about Jody's beginnings

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Freshmen alert!: 2 free Mask and Wig shows this weekend!

Come all ye loyal classman now from hall and campus through...

Attention Freshmen, if you haven't heard yet, Penn's Mask and Wig Club, the nation's oldest (119 years+!) all-male musical comedy troupe is performing for you guys twice (and for FREE!) this upcoming weekend.

As an alum of Mask and Wig, it is my duty to let the freshmen reading this blog out there know that you're in for a treat.

PERFORMING ARTS NIGHT - Saturday, September 8 (7 pm at Zellerbach Theater)
Mask and Wig will be performing their famous musical number, Tuition! Be prepared to see Penn in a whole new light. : )

FRESHMAN FREE SHOW - Sunday, September 9th (9 pm at Zellerbach Theater)
Mask and Wig's Free Show attracts audiences of over 1,000 freshman each year. As your only chance to see Mask and Wig for Free, it's a show you won't want to miss!

Young men interested in joining the Club can attend the Schmoozer in Mask and Wig's Clubroom in Lower Quad immediately following the Free Show. For those guys interested in trying out for the group, auditions will be held on Monday, September 10th, at 5:00pm in The Arch.

Click here to see the campus map as to where these events will be held

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Monday, September 3, 2007

Dueling Tampons Exclusive: 2 new Gabriel Mann (C'95) songs

GABRIEL MANN: Tall Buildings

Attention music lovers and Penn alumni Film and TV producers who need uplifting, catchy music for their shows...

Meet singer songwriter Gabriel Mann (C'95, Off the Beat).

Gabe releases his 4th full-length studio album Tall Buildings on Tuesday and per Gabe it's his "most fully realized material to date". I've been listening to it for about a month now and it is not only great, but it is infectious!

Per Gabe, "It's been in the works since I returned from my tour opening for Alanis Morrisette in Europe in the spring of 2005, and the songs cover some particular events from that period of my life, the lives of those near and dear to me, and places that are important to me.

Enjoy his music below!

Listen to Shadows of Tall Buildings
“I’ve always felt comfortable in New York,” says Mann. “And the title track reflects feelings I’ve often had there. Shadows of Tall Buildings represent our greatest expectations. Sometimes we fulfill them, sometimes not – sometimes we are relegated to the shadows, sometimes we are able to rise above.”

Listen to Eight Feet Tall
"Eight Feet Tall is about pressure, stress, and the difficulty of standing up to those who would bring you down, as well as the insecurity that comes with these pressures."

Buy the CD

Click here to see how Gabe got his start in the music business

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Sunday, September 2, 2007

18 to drink, 21 to party... 15 to go to Penn

Did you hear that Brittney Exline, a 15 year old (!) is attending Penn this year as a freshman?

Click here for more info!