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Marissa Flaxbart
Writer, artist, brainstormer, podcaster, culture enthusiast, compassion advocate.
Recent Activity
ou, "Les jumelles américaines ennuient un garçon français" Relive your totally universal teenage memories of spring breaks in Cannes, France – exploring the topless beaches, returning puppies to countesses, picking up medication for your host mother's patients...you know, all the normal spring break stuff. Kat Hazelton remembers! And she's back,... Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
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L.A. is jam-packed with fantastic actors, but our theater scene is overshadowed by the entertainment dominance of film and television (sometimes literally, like by the giant FYC billboards that tower over every major intersection in the city...there are definitely theaters... Continue reading
Posted Sep 5, 2019 at Marissa Flaxbart
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I am afflicted. At some point this week – a week that I’d been thrilled about and looking forward to, one which felt full of possibility – something soured. I’ve caught some kind of jealousy disease. Emerald Fever. I’ve noticed... Continue reading
Posted Aug 10, 2019 at Marissa Flaxbart
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Tuesday of this week was a crisp, blank sheet of paper. I cannot overstate how much I revel in the occasional day with no scheduled events in sight – emphasis on "occasional," as living every day like this would get... Continue reading
Posted Aug 7, 2019 at Marissa Flaxbart
It's quarter to 9pm on a Monday and I'm buying overpriced European butter and organic buttermilk from the fancy health food store. It's not that I need the buttermilk to be organic, or the butter to be European; it's just... Continue reading
Posted Aug 5, 2019 at Marissa Flaxbart
I already had my Friday more or less planned. Write, walk, coffee, walk, smoothie, write, movie, dinner, read, sleep. It was going to be a nice, quiet, solitary day. And then I sent a friend a message. The message read,... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2019 at Marissa Flaxbart
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Did you know that IKEA now sells a small loom as a children’s toy? It’s sold under the name LUSTIGT, which is Swedish for “enjoyable” and, incidentally, is also the name for all the other cool toy-type-stuff at IKEA. Good... Continue reading
Posted Aug 2, 2019 at Marissa Flaxbart
Immerse yourself in a world with no cell service (because it's the mid '80s). In this last Extra Drama of Season 3, longtime Sweet Valley High reader Cherelle Solomon is back to talk earthquakes, the appeal of Sweet Valley, and the very tantalizing possibility of reading two books at literally... Continue reading
Posted Aug 1, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
All the mysteries of Pi Beta Alpha, REVEALED AT LAST! Ah, complicated teen friendships. Ah, high school sororities. Some experiences are universal. Avid girlhood Sweet Valley reader (and current therapist) Cherelle Solomon joins Marissa to examine this timeless text. Reference Shelf: Joanne the Scammer The DUFF BTW, the last PBA... Continue reading
Posted Jul 25, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
#JusticeforHelenBradley #JusticeforDeniseHadley It's tempting to say, "why are all these teen girls so awful?" But then you remember what being a teenage girl is like...which is not to say that Marissa and her guest, Denise Boylan, refrain from calling out teen girls like Amy Sutton, Jessica Wakefield, and even Elizabeth... Continue reading
Posted Jul 18, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
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Earlier today I clicked on the link to this site from my Instagram bio. I was showing someone (someone a couple decades older than I) how the whole “link in bio” thing works. Right at the top of landing page,... Continue reading
Posted Jul 12, 2019 at Marissa Flaxbart
Meanwhile in a Los Angeles closet, er, recording booth... While we wait for the haunting to pass (read: until we can re-record the episode recapping Book 29, BITTER RIVALS) we're reading letters from Gladiators like you. Sweet Valley Twins, Thrillers, Special Editions, Sagas, and even audiobooks all get a name... Continue reading
Posted Jul 11, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
Meanwhile in a Los Angeles closet, er, recording booth... While we wait for the haunting to pass (read: until we can re-record the episode recapping Book 29, BITTER RIVALS) we're reading letters from Gladiators like you. Sweet Valley Twins, Thrillers, Special Editions, Sagas, and even audiobooks all get a name... Continue reading
Posted Jul 11, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
Real #29: BITTER RIVALS episode coming July 18, 2019. Unless ghosts. There comes a time in every podcast's run when it is overrun by MAJOR TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES!!! This is that time for us. As such, Marissa will not be offended if you skip this one altogether. She WILL, however, be... Continue reading
Posted Jul 4, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
An attitude adjustment is the best kind of makeover. What's Lynne Henry's deal? This and other pressing questions (not to mention heartfelt confessions of deeply rooted personal insecurities, laments about high school crushes, smack talk about Guy Chesney, etc.) come together to form the sexy, confident body of this week's... Continue reading
Posted Jun 27, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
"If you don't know who Guy Chesney is, I don't know what you're doing here." You've been waiting with bated breath for Lynne Henry to FINALLY get her very own book. Marissa is joined by her cousin, Meghan Shattuck of Albuquerque, for this journey into one of the teen-angstiest volumes... Continue reading
Posted Jun 20, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
Get out your durable tissues: you're crying appleseed tears now, baby. It's Wednesday night and there's nothing better to do than sit in a semicircle at the high school and listen to teen poetry. Molly McKellar returns to help Marissa recreate an authentic "literary evening" at Sweet Valley High an... Continue reading
Posted Jun 13, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
The phrase "Hands-Off Hanlon" does not appear in this book. Ken Matthews: The man. The myth. The m....aybe he should be spending more time working on his English homework? Molly McKellar joins Marissa to discuss this movie-star handsome captain of the football team and his many, many, highly relatable troubles... Continue reading
Posted Jun 6, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
Your host checked the spelling of every BSC name and location used in the titles and descriptions for this episode; yes, she'd spelled them all correctly the first time. #fullElizabeth What do you get when you put the Baby-Sitters Club girls in a Sweet Valley world? Well if this bonus... Continue reading
Posted May 30, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
Or, "the four dumb-luckiest teens in California somehow manage to pull off history's least considered rescue mission!" WITH JACK & TANNER FROM BABY-SITTERS CLUB CLUB! Is Mitch Denson a certified snack or an entire dish? What on earth is a “burn of the week?” Who is Regina? Answers to all... Continue reading
Posted May 23, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
What is the sound of one band rocking? Dan Gaspari returns to discuss the band that rocks Sweet Valley High. What do they sound like? What will happen if they date each other? Who are they? How many band names can we remember? Answers to all this and more await!... Continue reading
Posted May 16, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
You can run, but you can't hide...from the wrath of KAREN! Grandma and Grandpa Wakefield are in town and poor Alice has NOWHERE TO RUN from her attention-hogging, out-of-state in-laws! Oh wait, that's the b-story. This book's title refers to Droids drummer Emily Mayer and her family problems, which Elizabeth... Continue reading
Posted May 9, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
Jessica, Winston, and Jessica's Imagination. How's that for a bizarre love triangle? Guest Katie LaDue returns to finally reveal the secret Jessica B-Plot that had her scheming to go to a dance with Winston Egbert. What possible explanation could there be for such a happenstance??? Listen and learn the truth. Continue reading
Posted May 2, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
Thanks to Betsy Martin, my eggs are cold. Steven is in a love triangle with Cara and a ghost. Elizabeth is hoping to replace Todd with a doppelgänger. Jessica is trying to get Winston to take her to The Caravan. In short, all three of the Wakefield siblings are back... Continue reading
Posted Apr 25, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries
Marissa and songstress Jocelyn Scofield discuss the story of Jocelyn's ode to all the former Rick Andovers out there, her song "Bad Boy in High School." Spoiler alert: they're probably NOT the best years of your life. Continue reading
Posted Apr 22, 2019 at Sweet Valley Diaries