Merry Christmas in July!

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Oh the weather outside is frightful
And the air conditioner is so delightful
And since we’ve got no place to go
QVC, QVC, QVC!

Oh it doesn’t show signs of stopping
The holiday segments make us all go shopping
For holiday shit we don’t really need
QVC, QVC, QVC!

That’s right y’all, today is July 25th, that very special day for Christmas enthusiasts from around the world and (more importantly) for all of the home shopping networks here in the U.S.A. In exactly five months from today, it will be Christmas morning when everyone around the world will run from their respective bedrooms down to their Christmas trees to unwrap gifts they intend on returning or regifting the following day! After all, this is America and any typical, under-achieving, hot-blooded American would think you were a Communist if you weren’t ungrateful for the things that you have and the things that are gifted to you on this very special holiday! Now Mamma Biscuit and I love lounging on the sofa with a tower fan blowing in our direction and the air conditioner cranked up to near arctic levels on any given Summer evening, but tonight, we’re pulling an all-nighter with QVC! We need to keep abreast with what young Chinese children have been putting together for the American consumer all year long. They may have all gone blind, lost a finger or three or developed a rare cancer in the process, but this cheap exported labor is what makes us Americans max out our credit cards and keeps us in the spirit—and besides, if you can’t hoard cheap holiday goods for Jesus Christ, who the hell can you hoard for? More importantly, why bother hoarding to begin with! Jesus hoarded disciples in his day, so go on and hoard another box of flameless flicker candles for every damn window of your house, you deserve it!

Now QVC clearly takes advantage of this time period where yuletide idiots like ourselves begin to yearn for Christmas as a retail marketing strategy—not that we ever need any push to purchase anything Christmas related throughout the entire year. It makes sense though, June is a great month to purchase gifts for weddings, graduations, Father’s Day, and buying summer clothes and outdoor entertaining items. July is still too early for back to school shopping and practically dead in the retail world (although I’ve seen a few commercials for school supplies) HOWEVER, it is the perfect opportunity for the home shopping networks to grab middle America (and a select few of us in the Northeast) by the balls and shove some consumeristic holiday fear of not being able to get all of your shit done in enough time before the 25th of December. In comes the QVC army with their fiber optic wreaths and trees, dizzying array of lights, permanently swagged garland, pre lit trees that practically build and decorate themselves, talking snowmen and their respective sex partners and a plethora of hideous holiday sweaters to solidify this fear and the overall bad taste afflicting our nation. I mean, our economy survives on this formula so if you’re not watching or buying, then you’re an unpatriotic terrorist threatening Mamma Biscuit’s freedoms as an American pug! Now that I’ve gone and made myself sound like an ignorant, angry FOX news anchor, why don’t I switch gears here and share with you all a few amazing holiday decorations we have acquired in the past two weeks. What you are about to see is just a taste of what’s to come in the next two weeks. Tommy and I will be heading on an excursion that will most likely yield some pretty amazing Christmas wares—more to come on that!

First on the agenda is this amazing flocked figurine that I just acquired from an antique store out in Havre de Grace, Maryland.

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Those of you who have been following Mamma Biscuit for several years now will know that I have a huge collection of flocked ornaments all made in occupied Japan circa 1945. I’ve been collecting for so many years now and I have to say, it’s getting harder and harder to find these charming ornaments with pipe cleaner details. This one is especially unique due to the size. It measures close to 4.5” tall and her hand-painted face is nearly flawless. The figurine still has good flexibility and can be positioned any way I like. I’ll find a spot on one of our many garland displays come this Christmas and she’ll blend in seamlessly!

Next up we have an extremely delicate glass ornament from the late 40s with pale green crater details and hand painted abstract lines in red.

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The earmark to a good vintage glass ornament is the sturdy crown and hanger at the top. Mamma Biscuit and I have such a huge collection of these ornaments that we can actually decorate a full 6-foot tree using just them alone—it’s like I’m the Imelda Marcos of Christmas ornaments. At any rate, I was drawn to this Keith-Haring-on-crack aesthetic and just had to add this baby to our ever growing collection!

Last on our list of ornaments (I told you this was gonna be short) are these fabulous set of four pipe cleaner wreath ornaments from the mid-60s.

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I scooped these babies up several weeks ago at the garage flea market here in Chelsea before they closed their doors for good to make way for yet another luxury high rise—because that’s what New York City needs, another fucking luxury high-rise that will remain 75% empty!

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Before we sign off here to go sit in front of the TV to watch a 10-hour stretch of Christmas in July on QVC segments (while foaming at the mouth from disgust) I have to share with you all a new Christmas product that was teased on QVC as an upcoming highlight to Christmas in July several weeks prior that rocked my Christmas world. The product is called Blisslights Spright and boy will you be amazed. Blisslights is an artistic lighting company founded in 2006 that invented, engineered, and put a patent on a unique multiphase diffractive holographic optics and light projection technology. This unique lighting experience projects thousands of static pin-points of light that is perfect for a “fire fly” effect in your garden or creating a truly unique holiday display that will amaze you and your neighbors. You really do have to see it to believe it, so check out this video below.

Unfortunately, these lights only come in blue, green and red and have a very cold, laser/LED tone to them but the day they make clear lights is the day I’m on board. Can you imagine? No more tangled lights, no more freezing outdoors in the winter hanging lights from tree branches and gutters? This product can make even the most mundane trailer park look like a Christmas wonderland. My only concern is what happens when a blizzard comes through and covers the lights completely under 12 inches of snow? At any rate, you heard it first from Mamma Biscuit and family—because we eat, breathe and live Christmas!

Enjoy

Posted in Holiday, Vintage | 1 Comment

14 in 2014!

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You may be wondering why there was limited train service on your commute this morning with very few people around or how there were no cars on the road while driving to work, right? And how about your early run to the post office or bank only to find out that they were all closed? Expecting a package to arrive in the mail today? Well you can forget about it! Why you ask? Well if you are shameless enough to admit that you forgot today was Mamma Biscuit’s birthday then the federal government will remind you! That’s right, Mamma Biscuit’s birthday is a national holiday here in the good ol’ United Pugs of America—so go on and tell your boss to fuck off because your taking a fully paid day off! Congress has taken a day of recess today, the New York Stock Exchange floor is completely empty and even Israel and Palestine have taken the day off from their never ending feud to observe the most important holiday of all, the birth of Mamma Biscuit! OK, maybe today is not the exact day she was born but it was the day we brought her home to the Pug Palace. Can you believe it? It’s been 6 years to this day that Tommy and I headed down to Curly Tail Pug Rescue in the East Village to pick up our toothless gremlin. Boy does time fly when you are having fun. I remember the first time I laid eyes on Mamma as she came corralling inside from a walk with a gaggle of other pugs. She was snorting like a pig and I could easily pick her out from the crowd because she was the only one in the bunch to have a tongue that dropped down passed her knees! No one at Curly Tail had any idea when her actual birthday was. Puppy mills could care less about keeping records like that for dogs they assign a number to. In fact, Curly Tail told us she was 7 years old at the time but the files that came along with her from the vet stated that she was actually 8 years old. So right then and there we made July 11th (the day we brought Mamma Biscuit home to her Pug Palace) her official birthday and thanks to our elected leaders, this day has been turned into a national holiday—a day to celebrate our national treasure: Mamma Biscuit!

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Now Mamma’s face may have gotten a whole lot grayer and her walks may be a bit slower but our little gremlin will forever be young, beautiful and full of style no matter how old she gets. She sure has the wardrobe to prove it! Here she is killing it wearing her super chic yellow with white polka dots birthday dress from Martha Stewart. Every year, I search high and low for a cute little birthday frock for Mamma Biscuit and this year, Martha’s canine line came through for us. I was able to redeem a Pet Smart gift certificate prize Mamma won for a small pet contest at Tommy’s company over the Winter season to pay for this dress and she looks so fabulous wearing it. Tommy also found this beautiful French floral brooch made from pearls and glass which looks stunning on a bright yellow dress, don’t you think? Oh, and that hot pink waist band with bow accent on this dress is everything! WERQ MAMMA, WERQ!

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So we geared up our little Spumoni Face in this glamorous Summer ensemble and went out for a walk in Fort Tryon Park where she could receive the public and their numerous birthday wishes! People made the pilgrimage from all over the country (hell, the world even) to come see Mamma Biscuit perched on a park bench on her special day looking fashionably elegant and happy as a clam! Some came bearing gifts and treats, some came looking to be healed by her magical tongue and some came simply to wash her paws like Jesus Christ did for his Disciples! Unfortunately, Mamma Biscuit hates getting wet so she wouldn’t stand for any of that shit—not unless she was lured with a sack of peanut butter treats!

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And then after 10 minutes of interacting with her fans, she got tired . . . and bored!

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So after our lovely walk through the park, we headed back to the Pug Palace to celebrate her birthday festivities with fresh watermelon, honeydew melon and mango sorbet—all refreshing treats that could cool off the Biscuit Lady.

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Mamma literally inhaled that sorbet in ten seconds flat before moving onto her bowls of fruit. She didn’t even bother to read her birthday card let alone wait for us to light her birthday candle to sing Happy Birthday to her. In typical Mamma fashion, she stormed the food spread like a pug pirate, inhaled everything in sight and then trotted off to a cool corner in the apartment to lay down on the floor and take a nap! If you ask Tommy, he’d say she learned that behavior from me—and I’m not sure I can deny that with a straight face.

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So that’s it folks, today Mamma turns 14! We hope you all will enjoy this day off in celebration of her birthday. Today is the day we honor and celebrate our favorite toothless pug on the internet and how rewarding it is to rescue a pet!

Enjoy

Posted in Fashion, Holiday | 23 Comments

Jersey Sure!

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I may be a New York City boy and Mamma Biscuit may be a New York City pooch but there is a whole lot of Jersey love when it comes to the consumption of reality TV at the Pug Palace. I mean, the George Washington Bridge is just a stones throw away from our front door connecting Manhattan to the unruly state, and no matter how hard I try to suppress it, I’ll always remain a guido at heart—even with this giant hairy upper lip of mine! Now Mamma Biscuit and I love lounging in front of the tube to watch our beloved Jersey related shows. We have watched everything from Cake Boss to Jersey Shore and Jerseylicious to the ongoing seasons of the Real Housewives of New Jersey and let me tell you, we feed our cawfee talk addiction on the regular. With that said, these Italian-American shows go beyond the borders of New Jersey and into scarier territory like Staten Island and Long Island—or as I like to call it, wrong island in front of Tommy to make him mad! Shows like Long Island Medium (Theresa Caputo is such a fraud) and Mob Wives (Big Ang is my hero and I actually designed her book cover) really inspire me when it comes to the contemporary guidette look. Long nails, poofy hair, giant gold jewelry, leopard-print-everything and harsh, ill-applied make-up seems to be the uniform throughout. Every garment is too short and too tight and the neckline is almost always plunging showcasing some of the biggest breasts I have seen on basic cable. Anyway, several weeks prior, Mamma Biscuit and I popped into Popcorn Paws (our version of Kim D’s Posche Boutique) and stumbled upon this leopard-print shirt that just screams Olivia from Jerseylicious. If you have no idea who and what I’m talking about then I suggest you stop reading this post because it’s only going to get more specific. As Mrs. Giove from Jerseylicious would say, “SHOW SOME RESPECT.”

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Teresa Giudice from the Real Housewives of New Jersey has called Mamma Biscuit seeking legal advice about the charges brought upon her and her husband Juicy Joe for tax fraud and Mamma needed something to wear that would make that dishonest, hairy monkey with no forehead comfortable and at ease—so our little gremlin plans on wearing this leopard-print shirt in lavender with sequins, what do you all think? It may not be skintight enough and I may have styled it with a tasteful brooch but I think the sequins and leopard are tacky enough to distract Teresa into convincing her to stop lying to the government. I swear, when I brought Mamma Biscuit into the park to take these pictures, I had Melissa Gorga’s god-awful song On Display playing in my head. I just love that Mamma Biscuit can go from Vogue couture to this crap and still maintain a sense of confidence and grace—it’s really what makes out little spumoni face timeless!

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So as I was snapping my camera at Mamma Biscuit during this photoshoot in the park and really channeling our love of New Jersey, a pedestrian stopped behind me to enjoy the cuteness of it all. She said, “looks like your pug is ready for her close-up” and as I turned to see who it was, I nearly fell over. Julianne Moore gave me a wink before walking off into Fort Tryon Park. YES, you read that right, I said Julianne Moore. In a matter of seconds, Mamma and I were transported right back into NYC because you know a celebrity sighting like that would never happen in New Jersey!

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New season of the Real Housewives of New Jersey starts on Sunday, July 13th—can’t wait!

Enjoy

Posted in Fashion, Outdoor Life, Portraits | 4 Comments

Giving Face!

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It’s been a really tough week to say the least. I feel like I have nearly forgotten about Mamma’s little corner on web here and when I do have some spare time to actually sit down and write, something work-related always seems to come up. So I apologize if you haven’t seen anything new here in a while, such is life here in NYC. We all have our careers to tend to but the one thing that gets me through a really tough week is coming home to our little spumoni face. She’s such a good little girl who always knows how to cheer me up—even when she’s being a bad little girl whose only focus is getting her gummy mouth on another soft-chew treat. So I decided to quickly touch base with you all today before I head home from work to give you a little dose of Mamma Biscuit. I mean, why should I be the only one to enjoy this face and that tongue? Our little gremlin sure knows how to give face and work her cutest angles to lure food out of us. It’s really her specialty!

So these photos were taken two weeks ago during a stroll through Fort Tryon Park. Now when I say a “stroll” what I really mean is Mamma Biscuit walks for two minutes, does her poopy and pee pee business and then practically begs to be carried like Cleopatra the rest of the way. Shocking, I know!

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Secretly, I don’t mind it. Carrying Mamma Biscuit like a baby sure gives all of the pedestrians something to smile about and makes me feel like I’m squeezing onto a plushy teddy bear in public—a win-win situation if you ask me.

Here’s another photograph of Daddy and child—my two dogs!

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Oh and here I am looking like Mario from the Mario Bros. video game while holding Mamma Biscuit. I can assure you that although I am Italian, I am not a plumber so don’t throw any barrels at your screen!

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Happy Friday y’all! It’s gonna be a fantastic weekend and Mamma Biscuit and family are so ready to take it on!

Enjoy

Posted in Outdoor Life, Portraits | 10 Comments

Big Trouble in Little China!

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I have a confession to make: I have been secretly daydreaming about taking Mamma Biscuit on a grand trip to China so that she can reacquaint herself with her homeland roots as a pug. Seriously, since the very first day that Tommy and I adopted her from Curly Tail Pug Rescue (nearly six years ago) I have been running my mouth to everyone about touring the Great Wall of China (among other sites) with Mamma Biscuit by my side. Wouldn’t that be fabulous to see our little gremlin trucking along the ancient walls, channeling her ancient Chinese roots with her tongue dangling down to her knees? Pugs are Chinese royalty dogs and you all know that Mamma Biscuit is the Queen of our pantheon. Hell, she’s the Queen of all pugs on the internet worldwide. Mamma exudes so much royalty that she makes Kate Middleton look like a schlub from the English country side. For her, it’s innate! Now pugs have a very rich and amazing history that can be traced way back to 700 BC at the time of Confucius when they were known as lo-sze. The breed is considered one of the oldest canine breeds today. Perfect, Mamma is about to approach her 14th birthday this July so she knows a thing or two about being old. Aside from Tibetan monasteries, only members of the Chinese imperial household were allowed to own these small-nosed dogs who always stayed by their master’s side even during royal occasions when foreign guests were present. It is said that female pugs were held in high esteem so much so that they had the same rank with the wives of the emperor. WOW, I’m sure Mamma Biscuit would have made an Emperor’s wife green with envy with the amount of attention she would have stolen from her husband had she been alive back in those times. I mean, Tommy fights a continuously losing battle when he tries to compete with Mamma Biscuit for MY attention, that’s for sure! Anyway, this VIP treatment was true during the time of the great emperor Ling To (168-190 A.D.) who also ordered that his pugs be guarded by the palace’s soldiers and be fed with only the best food. He greatly loved his pugs that anyone who was caught attempting to steal a pug was meted a death sentence. At any rate, the reality of Mamma Biscuit traveling to the Far East will remain a pipe dream indefinitely because the last thing I would want to do is subject our little gremlin lady to a stressful 15-hour flight across the globe—not at her age. So I thought that the next best thing was to take Mamma Biscuit down to Chinatown here in NYC to see if it would spark the same energy in her little puggy
heart . . . and it sure did. So come along for the tour.

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Now choosing a specific street in Chinatown to photograph Mamma Biscuit was literally a no-brainer. For those of you who have never been to New York City, know that the most scenic street in Chinatown is the iconic Pell Street. Short and narrow, lined with brick apartment buildings, small storefronts, and an abundance of awnings and flags, the abrupt end at Mott Street gives Pell Street a sense of intimacy and makes it the “go-to” street for filmmakers looking to capture the heart of NYC’s Chinatown. We arrived super early Saturday morning before any of the fruit stands and fish markets opened up. We found a little nook in the corner in front of a red and blue Chinese sign for a printing facility (I think) to set up Mamma’s throne: a milk crate!

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We then outfitted our little critter with her very own genuine silk embroidered Chinese dress/jacket in teal with yellow piping. Lined with pale yellow faux fur, this dress/jacket is equipped with a little silk pouch that serves as a change purse for when Mamma needs to run to the open markets to squeeze a zucchini or two. It also doubles up as a condom pouch in case she wants to go gallivanting with her pug girlfriends in downtown, Schanghai on any given Saturday night. Safety first people, safety first!

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Mamma Biscuit sure seemed spirited as she watched the old Chinese ladies walking by while standing on her milk crate. They pointed and giggled at her and Mamma smiled on, feeling the spirit of her roots slowly return.

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While Pell Street is certainly one of Chinatown’s most iconic streets, Doyer Street is found branching off of it midway down the block and is one of only a few curved streets in all of Manhattan. In fact, Mamma Biscuit and her milk crate were parked a few steps away (across Pell Street) from the entrance to Doyer.

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If you look at a map, you’ll notice that Doyer Street is not a perfect curve but rather has a number of sharp angles which earned the nickname, Bloody Angle. Doyer Street was the site of numerous gang street battles and murders through NYC history and an alleged network of tunnels connecting several buildings also made for easy getaways for such violent activities. The street is essentially an old cart path and is named for Hendrick Doyer who ran a distillery here in the 1800’s.

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It’s very narrow, and feels removed from the intense hustle and bustle of the heart of Chinatown. In fact, it was so early in the morning and the streets were so vacant that all you could hear was Mamma Biscuit panting for another peanut butter treat as I was snapping my camera in her direction.

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When we finished up our photoshoot, we walked Mamma Biscuit down Mott Street towards the very beginning of Mulberry Street where we set up shop in front of a Chinese funeral parlor situated directly across from Columbus Park and literally right next door to Le Baron, a trendy little nightclub in Chinatown. Tommy and I rang in the 2014 New Year at a party at Le Baron and it was so much fun. It was so funny to see nightclubbers and club workers getting out from a Friday night party while photographing our Pug on a milk crate.

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Many stopped to bear witness to Mamma’s unbearable cuteness and undoubtedly hashtagged there iPhone pictures of her as #chinatownpugrealness! On our walk back to Canal Street, we passed by Pearl Paint Art Supplies store that has recently closed. Many landmark stores, restaurants, nightclubs and bars in and around NYC are vanishing due to extreme high rents. Mamma stopped at the corner of this iconic red building to pay her respects by squatting down to urinate!

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All in all, Mamma Biscuit has gained a new bounce of confidence in her step after visiting Chinatown. Our little Spumoni Face may never have the chance to touch Chinese soil in her lifetime but I think it’s comforting to know that she lives in a city that has a neighborhood that is rich with Chinese history. A neighborhood that authentically represents who she is as a royal breed.

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Like Cinderella, the best and well deserved Queens come from a troubled and abusive past. Mamma’s royalty is innate and has always lived inside of her and she’ll take that with her for the rest of her life.

Enjoy

Posted in Fashion, NYC Life | 6 Comments