Articles by " Jessi"
8 Mar

Nevertheless, She Persisted

Yeah, you heard me.

In honor of National Women's Day, I wanted to share some super cool cards we just got in that feature badass women. (Well, at least I think they're cool, I designed them.) It all started with Elizabeth Warren and what has become a battle cry taken up by women all around the globe. The women featured on these cards are personal role models of mine, each are strong in their own way.

Princess (and General) Leia Organa. My first role model. I so wanted to be like her when I grew up, confident and take-no-shit attitude.

Ellen Ripley. Surviving xenomorphs   AND mansplaining.

Daenerys Stormborn of House Targaryen, First of Her Name, the Unburnt Queen of the... you get the picture.
Also, Mother of DRAGONS!

Lady FUCKING Mormont!
(I don't know what her actual middle name is, but if it isn't this, it should be, cause that girl is a stone cold badass.)

Hermione Granger.
There is absolutely no way Harry Potter would've survived without her.

Maeve Millay of Westworld.
I wish I could be half as smart and cunning as this host.


Ladies, I salute you. You have, and always will, persist.

By    No Comments
30 Mar

K.U.Tube is Here!

Hey gang, KU now has a YouTube channel, how crazy is that?!?! In this video, Jessi and Adam tell you what to expect from the channel.

By    No Comments
23 Dec

A Festivus for the Rest of Us!

festivus1Tired of all the consumerism of the holiday? Fed up with not being able to find that ONE gift that is out of stock EVERYWHERE? Get the urge to punch anyone with too much holiday cheer? Then Festivus is for you, my friend! Celebrated on the 23rd of December, Festivus is indeed a holiday for the rest of us. How did it come about? It all started with Frank Costanza:

Frank Costanza: Many Christmases ago, I went to buy a doll for my son. I reached for the last one they had, but so did another man. As I rained blows upon him, I realized there had to be another way.
Cosmo Kramer: What happened to the doll?
Frank Costanza: It was destroyed. But out of that a new holiday was born … a Festivus for the rest of us!

And so, Festivus was born! Want to celebrate Festivus but don't know how? Here are a few things that you're gonna want to be aware of:

fullsizeFestivusPoleThe Festivus Pole - This is nothing more than an aluminum pole. Inexpensive, simple, and has a high strength-to-weight ratio. It is completely unadorned because "tinsel is distracting".

4The Airing of Grievances - This takes place immediately after Festivus dinner has been served (Dinner should consist of either meatloaf or spaghetti and no alcohol, btw). Each participant tells friends and family of all the instances where they disappointed him or her that year. Make sure to include your guests on how much they disappointed you as well!

The Feats of Strength - This normally follows the Airing of Grievances. Festivus isn't officially over until the head of the household is wrestled to the floor and pinned.Don't forget to remove any bulky clothing and shout the phrase "Let's Rumble"

The Festivus Miracle - Anything can be a Festivus Miracle... really. Good or bad, it doesn't matter. Your friend who you invited to the dinner and who had rsvped and actually showed up when the said they would? A FESTIVUS MIRACLE Your brother and his wife are fighting for the umpteenth time about their children? A FESTIVUS MIRACLE! The toilet is clogged? A FESTIVUS MIRACLE! (You get the idea)

festivus-7113951Are you tired of buying and giving gifts, only to have people tell you they made a donation to a charity in your name? Don't forget about The Human Fund! Don't spend any money this year, just give people this card and save yourself the hassle and stress of shopping! Make people think you care when you actually just can't be bothered!

You now know all you need to know about Festivus! Come celebrate with the rest of us curmudgeons! Happy Festivus to All and to All a Goodnight!


By    No Comments
8 Oct

Hey, Hey, It’s Pierogi Day!



My family is Polish, and if there's one thing I know, it's pierogies. They are the main staple to family holiday meals. We always have a variety of pierogi choices on hand, and there isn't ever any leftovers to be had. We're pretty serious about our pierogies. Which is why today is a great freaking day. It's National Pierogi Day! A day in which to celebrate the glorious, wonderful, scrumptious pierogi!

For those of you who don't really know, a pierogi is basically a dumpling stuffed with an endless variety of fillings. Fillings can range anywhere from sweet to savory, anything your little heart desires. The current running favorite fillings in my family are sauerkraut and pork, cottage cheese, spinach and lamb, and the classic potato. You can have them boiled, baked, or fried. My family boils them, then fries them so they get all crispy golden in butter. YUM!

Look at dem pierogies go!

Look at those pierogies go!

One thing that I really like about Pittsburgh is the fact that it loves its pierogies too! If you've ever been to a Pirates baseball game, you know what I'm talking about. Each game there's a Pierogi Race. Pittsburgh loves pierogies so much that it has 5 costumed mascots race around the field... just because! They even have an official page on the Pirates website. They all have names and stats of how many races they've won. Crazy! Pittsburgh even has it's own Pierogi Food Truck. I've had them, and they were delish.

So, I've just realized that I've been saying 'pierogies' as plural of 'pierogi'. Here's a fun fact: the word pierogi is actually already plural in the Polish language. It's the original 'betcha can't eat just one'! Also, there are many MANY different spelling of the word pierogi:  perogi, pierogy, perogy, pierógi, pyrohy, pirogi, pyrogie, pyrogy, and even Pierożki. Whoa, where did that 'Z' come from? Oh, us silly Polski's gotta stick them in everything!


I luvz da little pierogies. I luvz dem good!

But seriously, do you want to know why October 8th is National Pierogi Day?  It was the day in 1952 when Ted Twardzik Sr. founded Mrs. T's Pierogies and produced the first samples for a local grocery store. Mrs. T's, by the way, is the largest producer of pierogi in the US. USA! USA!

Wanna know something else that's cool? Pierogies have their own patron saint! Oh yeah, Saint Hyacinth! There's a Polish saying, "Święty Jacek z pierogami!", (St. Hyacinth and his pierogi!) which is an old expression of surprise, roughly equivalent to the American "good grief" or "holy smokes!" Looks like I just found my new favorite saying.

Wanna know how much I love pierogies? I really REALLY wish I had written this Ode to Pierogi.

So today, get out there and track down the nearest polish grandma (cause we all know that only gramma's make them the best) and stuff your face with little pockets of goodness! You know I will!

By    No Comments
3 Oct

Time To Get Cookin’, It’s National Cookbook Month

I don't know about you, but as soon as the weather begins to get chilly, I get the urge to cook my little heart out. It's the only time of year that I get tired of making the same old thing over and over again, and I begin to wonder what else I could add to my repertoire. I'll admit, cookbooks used to frighten me. I'd read a recipe and think "Yeah, THAT'S never going to happen." Then one day, I said to hell with it and used a recipe out of a cookbook. The end result didn't look anything like the picture in the book (it never does), but you know what? It was pretty damn good! I overcame my fear of screwing up a recipe and now have a pretty good collection of cookbooks.

October is National Cookbook Month, and boy, do we have all different kinds of cookbooks here at KU! Our cookbook section is a bonanza of mouthwatering treats ranging from classic to the obscure. It's pretty great!


image1 (3)

We carry authors like Nigella Lawson, Jamie Oliver, The Barefoot Contessa, Martha Stewart, Racheal Ray, etc.  We love the food, all the food! We have classics like "The Joy of Cooking" and the wonderfully strange like "The Sriracha Cookbook". We have books for those on a budget, books for those who are just starting to cook, books for those who want to impress their friends. We have Pittsburgh cookbooks, meat-centric cookbooks, and vegetarian cookbooks. Anyone else's tummy growling?

image2 (2)

Don't worry, Fifty Shades fans, I didn't forget about you. Parodies, I loves them!

image1 (2)

Nor did I forget about you, Game of Thrones fans. I got your back!

So, this month, pick up your favorite cookbook, or come and get a new one, and get cooking! You know I will.


Have I mentioned that we have cookbooks? 'Cause we do!







By    No Comments
16 Sep

You Can’t Take the Sky from Me

The 20th is the birthday of that devilishly handsome rapscallion of a browncoat, Malcolm Reynolds!


He's sexy and he knows it

For those of you who are not aware, allow me to go a little fangirl on you. It begins with the show that has a huge cult following, Firefly. Mal is the captain of Serentiy, a trading ship. He's a rogue outlaw with a heart of gold. The show is basically a Western... IN SPACE! Mal is Han Solo but better. Believe me there has been much, much debate on this subject, and I'm going to have to agree with geekdad.


I'll be the peanut butter in THAT sandwich

Mal has the tendency to get into tight spots but is always ready with a well aimed quip or barb, no matter how ridiculous the situation is.


At least you're honest


Business, he means it


Oh yes, please do

Captain Reynolds is a super badass. A natural leader, witty, a bit of a scoundrel with a soft heart (although you'll count yourself lucky if you EVER see it), he's pretty much my dream guy. So Happy Birthday Mal, you adorable hunk, you.






By    No Comments
4 Sep

It’s National Bourbon Heritage Month!





Ah, Bourbon. The 'Native Spirit' of America. Rather Bad Ass, don't ya think?  I really don't think there is anything better at the end of the day than a glass of good bourbon. Bourbon Heritage Month came into being in 2007 by a Kentucky Senator (Kentucky is known as Bourbon Country, fyi) , and celebrates the "family heritage, tradition and deep-rooted legacy that the bourbon industry contributes to the United States."  Celebrating responsibly and in moderation, of course.





Anyone else's mouth watering while looking at this pic, or is it just me?


Here's the thing about me, I love bourbon, don't care for whiskey. Which is really strange because all bourbons are considered whiskeys, but not all whiskeys are considered bourbons. But I swear, I can taste the difference. So what's the difference between bourbon and whiskey? Short explanation is how it's aged. Whiskey can be aged in re-used barrels, but bourbon must be aged in NEW charred AMERICAN white oak barrels. 'Murica! After the barrels have been used once, many other spirits (like tequila, scotch, etc) are aged in them to help impart the bourbon flavor to those spirits. Hey, why waste a barrel, am I right?






Hello, Gorgeous!


Also, here's a pretty cool infograph about bourbon. I LOVE INFOGRAPHS! Especially ones about alcohol!

So, this month, get out there and celebrate Bourbon Heritage Month by gettin' yer bourbon on! I raise my glass to you!





By    No Comments
20 Aug

Happy Birthday, Ray Bradbury!



The 22nd is the birthday of the man, the myth, the legend that is Ray Bradbury. Bradbury is in my list of Top 5 Favorite Authors EVER. That's saying a lot. My copy of Dandelion Wine is dog-eared and tear stained... in other words, it is very well loved. The man knew how to write, he wrote every single day.  Throughout his life, he tried to write at least 1,000 words a day. “Write a short story every week. It’s not possible to write 52 bad short stories in a row.” How true.


You probably best know Ray Bradbury for his dystopian novel Fahrenheit 451 and for his science fiction novel The Martian Chronicles. But did you know that in addition to his many novels (The Illustrated Man, Dandelion Wine, Something Wicked This Way Comes, etc.) he also wrote many, MANY short stories? His short story collections are something to behold. While I enjoy his novels to no end, I do prefer his short stories. I have yet to come across another writer who touches my heart the way Bradbury does. His writing is pretty transcendent and extraordinary. "Hold summer in your hand, pour summer in a glass, a tiny glass of course, the smallest tingling sip for children; change the season in your veins by raising glass to lip and tilting summer in." Something so simple, yet so powerful.


I hear you, Ray. I hear you.

Much of his work has been adapted for comics, radio, theatre, tv, and film. A handful of his short stories were adapted into episodes of The Twilight Zone (I Sing the Body Electric is a personal favorite), and there was even a television series hosted by Ray called The Ray Bradbury Theater. Fahrenheit 451 and The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit have been made into movies. The movie The Butterfly Effect takes inspiration from Bradbury's A Sound of Thunder. There was some controversy a few years back with Michael Moore. Ray was NOT happy that Michael appropriated Bradbury's title for Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11. Ray also has many literary awards and even has a moon crater and an asteroid named in his honor. That's pretty freaking spectacular.

There is one quote of Ray Bradbury's that I love most of all, and that I think says a lot about the man. "I have never listened to anyone who criticized my taste in space travel, sideshows, or gorillas. When this occurs, I pack up my dinosaurs and leave the room." Words to live by, my friend. Words to live by.

Happy Birthday, Ray, you wonderful, magnificent man.



By    No Comments