Thursday, February 26, 2009

World's Best Commercials 2008

ad⋅ver⋅tis⋅ing –noun
1. the act or practice of calling public attention to one's product, service, need, etc., esp. by paid announcements in newspapers and magazines, over radio or television, on billboards, etc.

I just returned from watching the World's Best Commercials 2008, a showcase of the best international commercials as recognized by the London International Awards for advertising. Here are some of my favourite ads from tonight:

Nintendo’s – Sponge
Cadbury’s – Gorilla
Herringbone’s – Henri's Hands
Ameriquest's – Brownie
Thrifty’s – Birthday Girl
Allan Gray Limited's – Beautiful
Freixenet Carta Nevada Reserva's – The Key to Reserva

On a personal note, this was my first foray into watching a movie at a theatre alone. I’ve gone to parties, bars, clubs and out for dinner all solo. On the list of social activities to do alone one of the only things left for me to do was to sit in a dark theatre with 100 other audience members. Check

And now I’ve done it. Next thing on the list - solo traveling.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

SEARCHLIGHT! Winner Phog Lounge Declared Best Live Music Club in Canada

con·test -noun
1. A struggle for superiority or victory between rivals
It started a month ago with a list of 114 nominated venues from coast to coast. Then the Top 50 were announced, then the Top 20. A week ago, it was the Top 10... and today the Grand Prize winner of the CBC Radio3 Searchlight Best Live Music Club in Canada was announced.

Congrats to the Phog Lounge located in Windsor, Ontario!

As the Grand Prize winner the Phog Lounge will receive:
  • A concert of their choice presented by CBC
  • A SIRIUS Satellite Radio System
  • CBC Radio3 clothing for all the staff
  • A plaque and trophy declaring the Phog Lounge the #1 Live Music Venue in all of Canada

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Futurama No More?

can⋅cel⋅la⋅tion –noun
1. an act of canceling

Futurama - Into the Wild Green Yonder

I just finished, what very well may be, the last ever episode of Futurama. This last ‘season’ (their fifth) has been four straight to DVD movies, the first was released on November 27th, 2007 and the last just yesterday, February 24th 2009. The movies are as follows:

1. Bender's Big Score
2. The Beast with a Billion Backs
3. Bender's Game
4. Into the Wild Green Yonder

From some articles I just finished reading there does not appear to be any more DVD’s in the making, nor does it look like they will be coming back for a 6th season, but I guess that will all depend upon the DVD sales.

Overall it has been a good run, I have thoroughly enjoyed the show, which has been on and off again since the first airing in 1999. This last instalment, Into the Wild Green Yonder, does not disappoint and stays in the typical Futurama style. So if you like the show, support them and go out and buy the DVD.

Who knows, your one ‘vote’ may just matter.

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Saturday, February 21, 2009

Frank Black and the Pixies

con⋅fi⋅dence –noun
1. belief in oneself and one's powers or abilities; self-reliance
2. certitude; assurance
Last night I finally saw a live Pixies show. I actually met Frank Black and Kim Deal up close and personal. I managed to get myself up on stage and convinced my way into being a backup vocalist…. yah right in my dreams.

Well it was a dream, maybe two mashed up together, so I will leave the first half of the dream out as it has little to no bearing on the second part:

I made my way through the cold wind and icy rain to the worn out brick building that had been converted into a music hall. For some reason I had Suited Up(!) and was wearing my $5 leather jacket as an overcoat. I had a moment of bravado and inspiration seeing the yellow jacketed security guard leave his post to the two female ticket takers. I boldly left my place in line and walked to the front of the crowd and explained that I was the talent. I was a vocalist that was called in at the last moment and that I had to get to the staging area right away. My performance was so good that they let me through without any questions. I tend to think it was the suit.

Once on stage the band, the Pixies(!), where setting up their gear, doing their own sound checks, testing their equipment. I explained to Frank Black that I was here to be the backup vocalist. He gave me a funny look as if he wasn’t sure, but finally shrugged his shoulders and set me up with a microphone.

I never did get to do any signing, but I did do a lot of dancing around with the mic stand during the first set. At intermission it started raining over the venue, apparently there was no roof on the building so we had to put tarps up over the stage so the band wouldn’t get electrocuted. They then brought in a meal for the band, huge trays of spaghetti and meatballs. The creepy looking guy in the yellow jacket that helped to bring in the food pulled me aside and let me know that he was going to pound the hell out of me after I left the show. He was angry for me embarrassing him. Apparently when he left his post and I managed to sneak myself into being part of the band was a great embarrassment to him. We threw him off the stage and…. well that was the time I met the Pixies.

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Friday, February 20, 2009

In The Navy - The Dream

re·spon·si·bil·i·ty -noun
1. The state, quality, or fact of being responsible
2. Something for which one is responsible; a duty, obligation, or burden
Last night I dreamt that I was in the navy, or at least worked on some sort of boat that required uniforms. Originally I was a quartermaster (I’m not sure if that is really a naval term) and then for reasons unknown I was bumped down to a deck hand. I had to return my navy blue uniform and trade it in for a white one. I was happy to be demoted, as I put it in my dream, when you are a quartermaster you are really just the officers bitch but when you are a deck hand all you have to do is mop and are pretty much left alone. I’m not sure if that makes any sense but I was happy for the downgrade of responsibilities.

I think I later snuck off the ship, or it was just another dream entirely, but for whatever reason I was in Sault Ste Marie where I purchased a brand new red 350cc Kawasaki and drove it to Hometown where I was attending a wedding for friends of mine. I’ve never driven a motorcycle, both in real life and in my dream, frankly I’m scared of them, but in my dream I was pleasantly surprised at the ease of it.
Who knows, maybe I will get a bike this summer, or join the navy…

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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Television Killed The Dream Machine

dream -noun
1. A series of images, ideas, emotions, and sensations occurring involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep

Being slightly broke, okay really broke, I have been watching a lot of television in my free time, way to much television to be precise. I’m typically not the kind of person that watches a lot of television but when the most cost affordable thing to do is stay home, it is easy an easy distraction.

I’m out of new books to read, I find most video games too addictive to own a system, and I haven’t been inspired to write anything other than this blog. So television has become my new friend, my new distraction from the world around me since I am too poor to participate in it. That and I really don’t have any friends. I’ve got some acquaintances, but none that really invite me places. And I am the kind of person that will wait to be invited somewhere, I guess that is the Libra in me.

Anyway I’ve been watching countless of hours of television these last couple of months. Here is just a list of what distracts me on a weekly basis:

King of the Hill

Family Guy
Malcolm in the Middle
Law and Order
Law and Order SVU

How I Met Your Mother

I’ve got a good 5-10 hours of television a day there. I hate myself for it. I wish I was doing something more production with the time I have to eat up before I fall asleep each day, but I have no idea what to do. Plus I think I am lonely and television fills that void a bit.

Until recently I would have these amazingly vivid unique dreams full of plot twists, excitement and intrigued. My dreams were so good that many times I would force myself back to sleep just to continue the dream. Lately these dreams have been losing their creativity and are full of all my television friends. For example I had a dream last night where Bobby Hill met his doppelganger and they developed a magic routine that took Arlen by storm.

How sad is it that now 8 hours of sleep I get are punctuated with characters from the 5-10 hours of television I watch? I guess if anything I could try to write some of these scripts and pitch them to those shows that are still being made. Or I could just stop watching television… because if I don't, before I know it my dreams will also feature commercials.

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Searchlight! What Is The Best Live Music Club in Canada? Top Ten Revealed!

ven⋅ue –noun
1. the scene or locale of any action or event
If you haven’t yet figured it out, I am addicted to CBC Radio3. Every couple months they do The Searchlight! where they pick a topic, such as this rounds What Is The Best Live Music Club in Canada?, ask everyone to submit suggestions and then they start doing votes.

From a list of 114 venues they are now down to 10:

  1. Aeolian Hall, London ON

  2. Amigo’s Cantina, Saskatoon SK

  3. Baba’s Lounge, Charlottetown PE

  4. Call The Office, London ON

  5. The Capital Bar, Fredericton NB

  6. George’s Fabulous Roadhouse, Sackville NB

  7. The Grad Club, Kingston ON

  8. Phog Lounge, Windsor ON

  9. Starlight Social Club, Waterloo ON

  10. Zaphod Beeblebrox, Ottawa ON
Get your vote in now. The winner will be announced on February 25th.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

My Own Personal Groundhog Day

[proh-kras-tuh-neyt, pruh-]
1. to defer action; delay: to procrastinate until an opportunity is lost.
I feel like my life has just become one long ever-repeating day without any break in it.

I wake up, I work, I eat, I work, I shower, I work, I check the mail, I work, I eat, I work, I watch television, I work, I sleep.

Repeat Chorus

I go out for something social on the weekend, a concert or some drinks.

Repeat Chorus

I go to the bank to cash a cheque.

Repeat Chorus

I pay some bills, a debt that never seems to get smaller.

Repeat Chorus

I pay my rent.

Repeat Chorus

I buy some groceries.

Repeat Chorus

I get older.

Repeat Chorus

Something’s got give.

Repeat Chorus

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Friday, February 13, 2009

The Ring & Friday The 13th

ring –noun
1. a typically circular band of metal or other durable material, esp. one of gold or other precious metal, often set with gems, for wearing on the finger as an ornament, a token of betrothal or marriage
No this is not a review of some horror slasher flicks, but another memory of mine that has bubbled to the surface. When I was a teenager my mother gave me a ring, a wedding band to be precise, that belonged to my great-grandmother. My great-grandmother, Sadie as she was known, passed away when I was just a baby, but I was said to be one of her favourites.

Sometimes my family has a weird, paranormal type of thing that goes on with them. Well at least in hindsight they feel they do. When Sadie passed all four of her grandchildren experienced something extraordinary. While working on the assembly line my Uncle had a visit from his dead grandfather who let him know Sadie had passed. My Aunt, who was at a gala, suddenly turned white ‘as a ghost’ and had to sit down, she said she automatically knew what happened. My other Uncle, well I can’t quite remember his tale but it was just as amazing, if not more. Sadie, who wanted to see me one last time, although she later declined, as she was afraid the light surrounding her would wake me, actually visited my Mom herself. My Mom later said she woke up on the couch with tears streaming down her face but felt the visit was genuine.

From that day forward my Mom was convinced that Sadie was my guardian angel, and I grew up hearing the tale. When I was about 14 years old my Mom bequeathed to me my great-grandmothers golden wedding band. Four about five to six years I wore that band on the pinkie finger of my right hand. When in a flirtatious mood I would explain that the person who’s finger fit the ring would be my true love, and only they I could marry. Of course I am at my most flirtatious when I am in the drink.

Unfortunately I lost the ring, on one such flirtatious occasion, and have never found it. Some people say the spirit stays with material items, and if that is the case I may have lost my guardian angel. I may have lost a piece of the great-grandmother I never knew, but always felt was there.

And if my drunken flirtatious ramblings where correct I may have also lost the chance to ever meet my one true love.

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Monday, February 9, 2009

Not Into Head Games...

head games –noun
[hed gāms]
1. the act of deluding; deception by creating illusory ideas
Head games, we've all experienced them, either on the receiving end or the ones dolling them out. Why does one choose to play these head games rather than just say what is on their mind or just keeping their thoughts to themselves and leaving well enough alone? Who knows, besides a psychologist of course, but hey those cost money right?

I feel like sharing some reflection time so here I go. I once met the grandchild of a neighbour of mine. Now you might be thinking Grandchild!, but before I continue the story let me assure you that my neighbour is a 97 year old woman, and her grandchild is really an adult in their 30's.

Back to the grandchild, we met by happenstance; we exchanged phone numbers and email addresses. We talked, texted and instant messaged one another for about a week’s time. We planned to meet on a weekend, plans were changed, cancelled, and then changed again. Or first real date was an early weekend morning, what some kids these days are calling a booty call.

Alcohol fuelled decisions are never a wise choice.

The early morning weekend date was over at dawn, we parted ways with the intention to see each other soon. This is when the head games began. For the next 48 hours I was barraged with a roller coaster of emotions, text after text, after crazy text.

“I don’t think I really like you...”
“I’m sorry for what I said…”
“I never want to hear from you again…”
“I want to see you right now…”
“You will never have to hear from me again!”

Just 48 short hours later my neighbour’s grandchild was quickly sliding below the line on the Hot Crazy Scale. Starting out well above the line, one potentially wrong alcohol fuelled booty call and 48 hours later, well the following graph can explain it better:

Moral of the story – well I guess there are two:

1) If you have something on your mind, or feel guilty about a decision you made, just say it or keep it to yourself. Either way head games are not they way to go.
2) Unless you are emotionally ready for it, alcohol fuelled early morning dates (booty calls) are probably not a good idea.

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Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Universal Humour

co⋅in⋅ci⋅dence –noun
1. a striking occurrence of two or more events at one time apparently by mere chance

“A coincidence is a small miracle in which God chooses to remain anonymous.”

Almost everyone has experienced that period of time after a serious relationship where they have been ‘intimate’ with their ex-partner. The time limit for post break-up tumbles can last from a number of hours to a number of months. I’m sure many people have their limits when it comes to the length of time, for myself I’ve run the gambit from just a few short minutes to over a year and a half, and everything in-between.

It may be easier when it happens to a friend, but have you ever noticed how sometimes the rebound, or the next relationship, resembles the previous one? I’m sure it is completely a psychological thing, especially for the loser of the break-up, but it is something you can never really see happening to yourself. Love is blind after all, even if said love is just of the rebound one-night tumble variety.

Coincidence, providence, fate, karma, whatever it is that is powering the universal gears I am sure it has a sense of humour. Each and every time I have gone through the pain of a break-up, sometimes as the victor, many more times as the loser, there has always been a comical situation involved with my triumphant return to the dating world.

One of my past relationships didn’t end so well, actually none of them really do, but this one in particular was not a very good ending. There are two main ways that one reacts to a break-up:

1) Sitting home feeling sorry for themselves
2) Falling into self-destructo mode

Number one is self explanatory, but number two may need some explanation. Self-destructo mode can be easily recognized in a newly single friend by the excessive drinking, smoking and partying that they participate in. It may even result in numerous rebound one-night tumbles. If you are the one that is newly single ask yourself the following questions:

- Do you wake up on a Wednesday morning still buzzing from the night before?
- Does you mouth taste like you swallowed an ashtray?
- Do you have to search for the wallet/purse of the unknown person that is sleeping in your bed just to find out their name?

If you answered Yes to at least one of these questions you may be suffering from a case of self-destructo mode.

Anyway, I digress, back to me. The universe is a funny place and I was suffering from a raging case of self-desructo mode. The humorous moment that comes to mind was at an annual party where I met someone, well I very briefly met them anyway, and somehow ended up alone with them at the end of the night. This was to be my first physical experience with someone since the break-up, and as it turned out it was a mutual occurrence. We shared more in common then just crawling out of the dark pit of a recent break-up; turns out our ex-partners had the same names as we did. Here I was trying to forget about _______ through excessive drinking and partying and then I end up meeting someone with the exact same name, who coincidently enough broke-up with someone that had the exact same name as me…

The universe is a funny place I tell you.

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