Dear Zachary is a powerful documentary by Kurt Kuenne, whose sole intent for creating the film was to memorialize his murdered best friend. But as the story unfolds, the film evolves into so much more. At its premise, Dear Zachary is about how one man’s life was needlessly and viciously taken away from his loved ones, an act that we later on learn was entirely preventable, had the system been more stringent. There are moments of joy, moments of anger and moments that will leave you in tears. Word of advice: have a box of tissues handy. It’ll also make you wonder why. Why did the system fail, and so tremendously so, causing innocent lives to be lost?
You may recall over the past two-ish years where I wrote about my job hunting woes as a new university grad in a series of somewhat, I’d say, morose posts on this blog.
I figured, it’s been a year and a bit and I should probably write an update about that situation. Otherwise, people stumbling upon this site may come across those links and assume I’m still looking for a job. Which, I suppose, wouldn’t be a complete surprise considering the economic climate nowadays.
Four years ago, our New York City foursome in Manolo Blahniks, Jimmy Choos and, well quite frankly, all the designer shoe labels that I can barely afford without leaving me in the poor house, left our television screens. Or at least left our screens in the new episodes sense, because I’m sure many of us have been watching reruns or re-watching episodes on DVD since then. Lo and behold, the Sex and the City feature film was announced, then filming started happening all around New York City, pictures started turning up all over the web, and I (along with the legion of other SaTC fans) began anxiously awaiting the release of the movie.
Gwen Stefani has released a new perfume line under her Harajuku Lovers brand and unlike the perfume released under her other popular line, L.A.M.B., this one has a cute and quirky flare that you’d expect a Harajuku Lovers product to have.
How is it different than other fragrances? Well, first of all, there’s the unconventional packaging. Each scent, five of them in all, has its own individual figurine atop the bottle. Actually, the hollowed out figurine itself makes up pretty much 90% of its volume and the glass bottle containing the perfume acts as a stand (so while the boxes for both sizes of Harajuku Lovers Fragrance seems large, that’s just indicative of the figurine size). This fact, that it comes in a set of five but can also be bought individually, makes them seem like collectibles a la the days when you were a kid and collected those McDonald’s Happy Meal toys in series. That is the main allure for the perfume line, it’s kind of campy yet endearingly so. And I’m sure a complete set of all the Harajuku Lovers fragrances would probably be a nice decoration for your dresser. And as any Gwen Stefani fan can easily deduce, the five figurines a.k.a. scents come in the form of her four “Harajuku Girls” (or as some ironically muse, Gwen’s “accessories”) plus Gwen. The five include G (The Leader Of The Pack), Love (Sweet Stuff), Lil’ Angel (Sassy, Sexy, Cool), Music (Tough Cookie), and Baby (Girlie and Sweet). Their respective scents also coincide with the names, or at least if you stretch your imagination a little bit.
So, first, what is The Secret?
I shall quote for you the summary from the book version of The Secret:
- It’s the Law of Attraction. Like attracts like — so when you think a thought, you are also attracting like thoughts to you.
- Thoughts have a frequency. When you think thoughts, they are sent out to the universe and they magnetically attract all like things that are on the same frequency.
- Everything sent out, returns to the source – YOU.
- If you want to change anything in your life, you need to change the frequency by changing your thoughts.
- Your current thoughts are creating your future life.
- What you think about the most or focus on the most will appear as your life.
- Your thoughts become things.
– Rhonda Byrne, The Secret
Coopers’ Camera, which premiered at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival, is a film brimming with Canadian talent. It’s written by The Daily Show‘s Jason Jones and Billable Hours‘ Mike Beaver and directed by Warren P. Sonoda. It was also filmed in Canada. But don’t let all the “Canadian-ness” scare you, it’s not a film with obscure references about Canadian culture (nor do Mounties make an appearance). Coopers’ Camera happens to tell the comedic story of family dysfunctional in a universal way.
If you haven’t already, get yourself on drhorrible.com and check out Act I and Act II of the 3 part web musical. It’s described by creator Joss Whedon, creator of Buffy and Firefly and all-around genius, as a musical about a “low-rent super villain” that happens to also blog. The super villain is played by Neil Patrick Harris, who continues to be funny (and legend… wait for it… DARY) in everything he does. The best part of all this? It reminds me of the Buffy musical episode where the songs themselves are not only hilarious, but the way they break in and out of said song is just perfection (see Freezeray in Act I). Since this is a Joss Whedon project, one that was penned during the Writers’ Strike, you can bet there are some familiar faces from “Whedonverse” in Dr. Horrible. Felicia Day (one of the potential slayers from Buffy) stars as Penny, Dr. Horrible’s love interest, and Nathan Fillion (Caleb from Buffy as well as Malcolm in Firefly and Serenity) stars as Captain Hammer, his arch nemesis.
Act I came out July 15, 2008.
Act II came out July 17, 2008.
Act II comes out July 19, 2008.
All acts will stay up free for viewing until midnight Sunday July 20th. After that, it will VANISH off the website but will be released on DVD at a later date (along with some extras).
Seriously, go and watch it, go now. Or buy the episodes on iTunes.
Well, what’s better to do on a Friday night than line up for hours outside a bookstore to meet your favourite author? And that is exactly what I, the big ol’ nerd that I am, did to meet David Sedaris.
I thought there would be a reading as well, and a David Sedaris reading is something not to be missed if you’ve ever listened to his audiobooks, but it turned out to just be a book signing. No matter, I thought, it was just exciting to finally meet someone whose work I admire so much and who inspires me to be a writer too. I had heard from a David Sedaris group on Facebook that meeting him, you should expect quirkiness and a conversation that can be out of left-field. It’s nothing like the autograph signings I’ve been to, which were by and large for musicians and such, where a typical conversation runs something like this:
Me: I am such a huge fan of yours! (Maybe insert some remark about something specific about their work that I like so much)
Them: Thanks so much!
*signs whatever it is I’ve just handed to them*
Me: Thanks for signing this. It was great meeting you.
Them: You’re welcome. Thanks for coming.
And that’s basically it. That isn’t the case when you meet David Sedaris, no sireee.
I’ve been an iPod user for years. After chucking my old 64MB (yes, that’s 64 megabytes) Rio 600, which was, at the time, quite the spiffy gadget and considered cutting-edge technology in a time when most people used discmans for their portable music, I moved onto my beloved 4th generation 20 GB iPod. It served me well for a year, until I decided to upgrade to the new 5th generation iPod video (in the 30 GB capacity). And since 2004, that same iPod has been with me almost 24/7. It’s seen me through the rest of my university career and the beginning of my professional career. It’s an inanimate object, but it could very well be my baby… my baby that happens to carry within it the soundtrack to my life.
Recently, I came across promotion for the Microsoft Zune, the newest generation that would also be the first Zune product to be released in Canada. Even though I think of myself as more of an “iPod person” than not, although I would not necessarily care to admit that because I would like to believe I am a consumer who hasn’t been completely brainwashed by Apple’s brilliant marketing ploys, but who am I kidding? I am a fan of Steve Jobs’ little music player.
But that wasn’t to say I wasn’t intrigued by the Zune the minute I read about it and saw pictures of the device. Wireless synching? A customizable and, may I add, one sexy user-interface? The integration of the social aspect of music listening? And a radio too? These features were enough for me to at least think about moving on from my iPod in favour of the Zune. Lucky for me, I was chosen by Matchstick Marketing’s new Zune Influencer program and so I was sent my very own 8 GB Microsoft Zune to “share and show off,” in the hopes that people realize there’s actually another option for mp3 players than just the iPod. Gasp.
Followers of my blog (all two of you!) may remember my previously voiced criticism and discontent over news of the live-action adaptation of Alvin and the Chipmunks. I understand the dilemma of trying to remold something that was popular many years ago to something that bears relevance to the culture and society of today, while still trying to keep the “essence” of that thing in tact. But what can I say? It’s a segment of my childhood that is so ingrained into my memories that the mere thought of Hollywood potentially ruining the formerly popular franchise was just exasperating and yet, I’m guilty to admit, somewhat intriguing. I wanted to see what they came up with and if my worst fears would come true.