Doing Dallas: BRUNCH Edition

Each week, this Virginian will try a new Dallasite activity and blog about the experience. Hey everyone and welcome to "Doing Dallas," a new, weekly post that features my thoughts and experiences on trying all things Dallas! This week, I decided to tackle the enigma that is Brunch. I’m not saying that I have never before eaten “brunch”—the combined breakfast/lunch meal with the cute celebrity couple name—because I have and I found it to be a swell experience. But I’m talking Brunch with a capital B—the sundresses, the #brunch Instas, the bottomless mimosas; the whole nine yards. That kind of Brunching is an exclusive club I had never visited, so Sunday morning I grabbed the bull by the horns (please note that appropriately Texan saying,) grabbed some friends, and headed to Uptown. Here’s what I learned:

The unhappy faces of my misled Brunchmates

1. Do Your Brunch Research

If you’re a Brunch novice like myself, don’t assume that you know how to navigate the murky waters of restaurant options; in trying to disguise your Brunch ignorance, you can easily lead yourself and others astray. Take, for example, my attempt to come off as a Brunch expert by suggesting we eat a restaurant I’d never been to but have driven past: Yolk. I mean, how Brunchy does that name sound?! After telling a white-lie by talking up the restaurant (“y’all, its so trendy and their omelets are to die for”) and paying for parking, we walked up to the door only to find out the restaurant hasn’t opened yet. Not “hasn’t opened” like we got their hours wrong, but “hasn’t opened” as in IT DOES NOT YET EXIST AS A RESTAURANT. Oops. #Awkward. After taking a picture of our fail—because Brunch in its entirety must be captured on camera—we headed off to another restaurant picked by someone other than myself.

Jenna Instagraming her healthy omelet. She even ordered the tomato-based, celery-containing Bloody Mary. She did Brunch right.

2. Know What to Order

Food is the glue that holds Brunch together and one wrong choice can send your whole morning of Brunch preparation down the tubes. Be smart and come prepared by knowing your Brunch terminology. Asking for “those eggs that are kind of runny but not raw but not solid” is a surefire way to tip off your angsty waiter that you’re a Brunch newbie. This fact will so appall him that he will proceed to forget about your table for the rest of your visit. He will also proceed to only get a 12 percent tip after doing so, but still, the situation could have been avoided had you mastered the Brunch vocabulary. Also, be cognizant of the fact that whatever you order will soon be on Instagram for all to see (refer to point three.) Accordingly, my choice of butter drenched French toast, sausage, and bacon next to my friend’s low-fat, low-carb egg-white vegetable omelet proved to be a bold choice.

My Instagram post. Aerial view? Check. Alcohol?  Check. Amazing hashtags? Indeed. And 39 likes…not too shabby.


3. Instagram

One thing I’ve learned from stalking my friends’ Brunch experiences is if you didn’t take a picture, it didn’t happen. Take as many photos of your food as possible from all angles—the artsier, the better. Pro tip: standing on your chair lands you a hipster aerial photo that will be coveted by all of your followers (see photo.) Use as many hashtags as possible—this will not be annoying but rather will show others how passionate you are about Brunching. If possible, make sure any alcohol you ordered is in the shot, too, so that everyone knows you’re a badass who drinks at 11 in the morning. Be sure to tag your location so all your followers know where to find you!

4. Topics of Conversation

Keep the conversation light—nothing too serious like politics or opinions about who should have won So You Think You Can Dance. After listening to conversations around us, we found three topics to be most prevalent: Betches, Booze, and Boys, or what I like to call the “Three B’s.” Try to insert into your conversation as many inspirational phrases as possible—“You must cultivate your own garden” and/or “You are NOT fat”—and you’re golden!

My experience was a positive one, and I am planning on becoming a monthly (possibly biweekly, if I’m feeling spontaneous and crazy) Bruncher. Cheers to the weekend and the phenomena that is Dallas Brunch!

Three satisfied Brunchers.

Chelsea Grogan is a Level 4 improv student at the DCH Training Center. She is obsessed with music of the 60s & 70s and her vices include vanilla lattes and Swedish Fish. You can check out more of Chelsea’s thoughts and ponderings HERE!

My Cat Has Goals (And Other Arguments Against Speciesism

by Sarah Mowery Since the dawn of time (since 200,000 years ago, rather), mankind has had the distinct advantage of being comfortably situated at the top of the food chain. We’ve gazed down at all the other animals, with their tails and their webbed feet and their adorable lack of fine motor skills and chortled, Dr. Pepper spraying triumphantly from our noses.

For thousands upon thousands of years, humans have proudly held the upper hand. Why? Because we can talk to and understand one another? Because we have opposable thumbs? Because we invented indoor plumbing?

Ah, the wonders of evolution.

Well, I took Biology in the 9th grade, and I’m here to tell you that 1. opposable thumbs are not that cool, I mean realistically I could easily type this whole thing and button my pants and stuff without them, come on, and 2. all animals are is humans who are different.

Not to get all PC on you, but thinking you’re any better than any other animal is speciesist and just plain wrong. Yeah, I’m talking to you, fellow mammals. In fact, calling them “animals” at all is pretty derogatory when you think about it. I prefer the term “People, Too.”

The truth is, there’s a lot we can learn from other People, Toos. Scout, the Feline American with whom I share my apartment, for example, is the most goal-oriented Person I’ve ever met. How many times have you, presumably a member of the aforementioned “Human” species and therefore obviously a huge bigot, crouched down behind the bathroom door to play with a rubber band when it somehow moves under the door crack beyond your reach, and thought, “Meh, there goes that toy. Guess I’ll go do something with my thumbs now.” Probably a million times!

Not Scout. Scout doesn’t give up. Scout has goals. Scout is going to roll around on her back behind that bathroom door, twisting and turning until she finds the angle that will allow her to slip her paw under the crack and grab the rubber band, huzzah! Could she have just walked around the door to the other side and easily gotten the rubber band there? Sure. But what fun would that be? Where’s the challenge?! Scout doesn’t take shortcuts! She stays focused and puts in the time and hard work required to achieve her goals. If Scout were Ferris Bueller, she would have run home on the damn sidewalk instead of cutting through those poor folks’ house or those random sunbathing ladies’ yard. This is also because she is not a falsely idolized miscreant, but I digress.

Unlike most “humans,” Scout likes to exercise during her free time. Here she is doing pull-ups.

Wouldn’t the world be a better place if we all behaved a little more like those “animals” we so love to look down on? Everyone can make small, simple changes, to help the cause! Like napping more, or feeding your young by spitting chewed-up food into their mouths.

In conclusion, people are people. But People, Too, are people, too, and you “people” would do well to remember that.

Sarah Mowery is a level 3 student at the DCH training center and she interns for the DCH blog. Fine more of Sarah's comedy stylings HERE. 




Giving and Receiving Gifts on Valentine's Day - FAQ

Image Credit: Happy Valentine's Day '14 Saint Valentine's Day is upon us again, and with it comes the obligatory anxiety over dinner reservations, and gifts, and cards, and what to write in the cards, followed by the obligatory fights over dinner reservations, and gifts, and cards, and what was or was not written in the cards. It truly is a joyous day. Due to the many potential landmines involved with giving and receiving gifts on Valentine's Day, we here at the Dallas Comedy House would like to provide answers to some of the more common questions on this day of love and celebration.

Isn't Valentine's Day just a made-up, Hallmark holiday? Do I even have to do anything special for my girlfriend? Yes, and yes! While Valentine's Day is a holiday designed solely to reduce  our national  surplus  of chocolate hearts, treacly greeting cards, and small teddy bears, it is loved by many and here to stay. So do something nice for your girlfriend. Conform to the whims of society. You have 364 other days to be a bitter iconoclast. Fit in today.

Once again, I'm single on Valentine's Day. What do I have to do to get a gift? You don't have to do anything. You already have the greatest gift of all, the gift of eavesdropping. Valentine's conversations are often full of passive-aggression, thinly-veiled hostility, and unheard pleas for understanding. And you get to hear all of it.

Is a box of chocolates and a bouquet of flowers that I picked up on the way home from work the best way to tell my wife that I love her? You forgot a homemade card with a hastily written message full of platitudes. Add that to the mix and you have what we call in the Valentine's advice industry, "The Bare Minimum Triumvirate." The number of "Bare Minimums," given or received has risen sharply over the past 50 years and now represents more than half of all Valentine's Day gifts. In an odd coincidence, the national divorce rate has risen at the same rate over the same period.

This happens to me every year. I've been seeing this guy for a few weeks and I'm not even sure if we have a relationship. What should I give him?  Ah, the old unsure-of-our-status trap. Too nice a gift and he might think you're coming on too strong, causing him to freak out and flee. No gift and he might think you're not sufficiently interested, causing him to freak out and flee. Men are the worst. In a situation like this, there's only acceptable gift: alcohol. It's non-committal, non-romantic, and can be spun to match the level of relationship you're not sure that you have. You really can't go wrong with booze as a gift, unless you're dating a minor or a recovering alcoholic. For the artsy, creative type, try a six-pack of craft beer, say a Racer 5 IPA.  A  more sophisticated gentleman might prefer a bottle of high-end vodka, like Chopin.  For the life-of-the-party type, a nice bottle of Patron will make the evening into an adventure, one that could potentially define your relationship. Stay away from Jim Beam or Jack Daniels or really any branch of the whiskey tree, unless you want to end up crying on the sidewalk at 3AM listening to a series of brutal put-downs delivered under the guise of "jokes."

For three straight years, my girlfriend has given me the same gift: a restraining order. Is my relationship getting stale? Your relationship does not exist. Nor has it existed for at least three years. Take your "gift" at face value and accept the fact that she's moved on, you creep her out, and you will go to jail if you come within 500 feet of her. And, please, never contact me again. Happy Valentine's Day!

Ryan Callahan is a current DCH student who loves crime novels and pro wrestling. He’s the brains behind WikiFakeAnswers.