westlifefan
13 March 2012 @ 11:50 am
Newsvine: The Two Skillful Brothers Scott: TV's 'Property Brothers' Finding & Building Dream Homes  
Good character is not given to us nor is it handed down. Like building a home, it must be carefully developed piece by piece, creatively through thought, choice, courage and determination. In some cases, it could very well be praised more so than talent and with that inner drive, one can go much further.

Jonathan and Drew Scott, 33 are not just the hosts of the popular real estate and home renovation show, Property Brothers on the W Network and HGTV but they are also twin brothers with a tremendous amount of passion and heart. Recently nominated for the prestigious Rose d’Or award in the lifestyle show category, the brothers are fast becoming TV’s newest sweethearts.

The show follows Drew, the licensed real estate agent and Jonathan, the licensed contractor to find fixer-uppers for homebuyers to turn into beautiful homes without busting their budget but undergoing a major transformation just enough to make it beautiful yet practical. Together they help out families while maintaining a strong heart throughout the process. It’s not easy but the two make it as comfortable for their clients as possible.

I had the pleasure of chatting with the charming brothers one evening last week while they took a break from filming multiple episodes of their show down in Austin, Texas. 
 
 
Current Mood: cheerful
Current Music: property brothers on w network
 
 
westlifefan
01 February 2012 @ 06:05 pm
Newsvine: Touchdown! Indianapolis Welcomes Super Bowl XLVI  
Newsvine
Touchdown! Indianapolis Welcomes Super Bowl XLVI



Excitement and fun are crawling around Indianapolis this week as the Circle City prepares to host thousands in anticipation for America’s favourite informal holiday, the Super Bowl. Taking place this Sunday February 5th, the championship game this year sees AFC and NFC title holders, the New England Patriots and the New York Giants battling it out again after four years of what some may consider the best finish in Super Bowl history, given the fact that neither team this time around has perfect records on the line. This matchup is bound to be tight and quite thrilling!

I'm not ashamed to say this but I will mention that I am an Indianapolis Colts fan. Yes, I bleed blue and after the crummy season we had, it's not surprising to see some of us fell off the bandwagon but we did have two wins near the end so that’s alright with me. As a fan not just of the team but of the great state of Indiana, I am especially proud that the city gets to showcase itself and all that it’s about to a new audience that’s willing to take in and adore a city that isn’t just gorgeous architecturally, culturally and for reasons of sport but has a tremendous heart. I guess there's redemption in there for the Colts and us fans; a renewal of fan-ship in some sense because call it what you will -- perhaps it's Hoosier hospitality, but these fine folks know how to throw a party and the days leading up to the Super Bowl are clearly proving it.

Continue reading article...
 
 
Current Mood: accomplished
Current Music: no light no light ~ florence and the machine
 
 
westlifefan
16 November 2011 @ 03:12 pm
newsvine - everybody poops: talking crap for world toilet day  

We all poo! Yup. It may sound funny to say out loud and even read back, but we all do it. The gorgeous Victoria’s Secret models are not exempt from this either, nor are any of People magazine’s Sexiest Men Alive – we’re talking to you, George Clooney! This is a reality and though it is one of the most taboo topics of discussion, it is also one of the most important ones to have in order to raise a global awareness.

No invention has saved more lives than the toilet. Since its creation, the toilet has brought great benefits to better sanitation, health and hygiene but every day, 2.6 billion suffer from improper access to clean sanitation. That means, a third of the world’s population do not have somewhere safe, private and hygienic to go to the toilet. Can you imagine going to the toilet in a muddy ditch? Or defecating in rivers, lakes, fields or railway tracks? That is the reality for many around the world and fact is, more people today have a cell phone than a toilet. If that isn’t reason enough to bring massive awareness to such an issue what is?

Continue reading...

 
 
Current Music: charlie brown - coldplay
Current Mood: accomplished
 
 
westlifefan
16 November 2011 @ 03:08 pm
newsvine - age shouldn't matter unless you're cheese  

Newsvine
Age Shouldn't Matter Unless You're Cheese



What is it about aging that scares some of us? Is it the influx of age defying facial lotions advertised between sitcoms like Cougartown or the commercials of a dapper silver-haired fox driving through the desert in a truck for Viagra? Whatever the case, age isn’t something society is accustomed to embracing in a positive and quite frankly, age shouldn’t matter unless you’re cheese. If you are cheese, well that’s a pity because in most cases, you would smell like feet.

I had the honour of interviewing one of my favourite actors a few years ago and we stumbled upon the discussion of aging in the industry quite briefly. He told me that disclosing his age factors into some of the roles he wants and it does make sense, sadly. I think it has for many decades. Look at Hitchcock’s Vertigo for example with a then 25 year-old Kim Novak lip locking with a nearly double her age, Jimmy Stewart or The Misfits starring a 60 year-old Clark Gable with a 35 year-old Marilyn Monroe. Sure, it was downright hot but there were plenty of other actresses with sex appeal and talent who could have played those roles and been older. The thing is, young is sexy in some twisted way and cinema has shown that spectrum throughout the years.

Continue reading...

 
 
Current Music: charlie brown - coldplay
Current Mood: bouncy
 
 
westlifefan
03 October 2011 @ 02:45 pm
Newsvine - Isha Sharma: Through the Eyes of a Photographer  
Newsvine
Isha Sharma: Through the Eyes of a Photographer



Photography isn’t just the art of observation. It’s a way of touching, feeling and loving in some form while finding fascinating things in an ordinary situation. Full awareness of what makes a good photograph is essential to the process because what you have caught on film is captured forever and leaves quite the impression of a voice unspoken. One photographer who is making waves through her unique style is Isha Sharma of Isha Sharma Photography.

Growing up in India and later moving to Canada, 24 year-old Sharma developed her love for photography after her father gifted her with a Polaroid i-Zone Instant Sticker camera at the age of 13. It was then that the young girl got into experimental photography, diving deep into a world of not just film reel but emotion and a way of capturing beauty found in an inimitable eye.

“I soon realized that I didn’t just want to take pictures of my friends and family and stick them on my locker,” she smiles. “I started experimenting with it and started taking more artistic pictures and realized how much I loved it.”

Continue reading...
 
 
Current Mood: accomplished
 
 
westlifefan
23 March 2011 @ 11:50 pm
newsvine - Elizabeth Taylor: "I've been through it all, baby. I'm mother courage."  
Some of you may notice that I'm a huge golden era film fan. I love old films and my mentality is, films are never really old even if they're black and white. A film is new from any era depending on if you've seen it or not. I'm sure you all know by now but Elizabeth Taylor, one of the world's most notable movie stars has passed away. My first thought when it happened was to literally hug our darling [livejournal.com profile] darlingdivine because I know how much the Dame means to her. I was a wreck today and very emotional. I couldn't really fathom it and like I was talking to [livejournal.com profile] starafar about it, but if you've grown up on these evergreen films and these actors who were from another time, you kind of expect them to always be around. You know? I mean, sure we don't know these actors personally but we let them into our lives, our homes and take comfort in their art when we're down and need a good cheer up. They become a part of us the same way, music does for a lot of us.

I had no other way to vent today. I had this terrible emotional lump in my throat and had it throughout writing my latest piece on Elizabeth Taylor. I still sort of do while writing this and I don't know why I get so emotional but it's heartbreaking when someone passes, especially someone who means something to your existence and has been there, you know?



Newsvine
Elizabeth Taylor: "I've been through it all, baby. I'm mother courage."



What is it about film that captures our attention so well? Some may say it's the story and how we best relate to it but most times, it's the performances played by actors who we are enamoured by; who we choose to relate to in some sense of the characters they portray because deep down, they're just like us. This morning I learned Elizabeth Taylor passed away and my heart sunk. Of course, death is inevitable and inescapable but watching someone throughout your years through a television screen and finding them to be of comfort to you, that's hard to part from. Speaking to a friend earlier today, we came to the agreeable notion that these people -- these actors, we sort of expect them to be around forever. Perhaps it's because my generation grew up watching black and white films and anything from that golden era but it just feels weird with them not being around any longer. I remember I first experienced the pinch of an actor that I admired passing away when I was twelve years-old: James Stewart. I had been watching It's A Wonderful Life since I was around eight or nine years-old and in some mentality of sorts, I always thought of him to be evergreen and always around.

Today was no different. My heart grew heavy at the news of Taylor's passing. In my twenty-five years of existence, I have watched a ton of movies and always found an appreciation for film whether it be in colour or black and white. I often tell one of my best friends that film isn't old if you haven't seen it and try my best to encourage him to watch the Turner Classic Movies channel. I might be annoying in my feat to convert couch potatoes to TCM watchers but at least I'm persistent.


Continue reading article...

 
 
Current Mood: sad
Current Music: starman ~ david bowie
 
 
westlifefan
22 March 2011 @ 09:37 am
newsvine - world water day 2011  
Today is World Water Day! Celebrate by bringing awareness and donating your voice. Read my article for further details on how you can make a difference! :D


Newsvine
World Water Day 2011



Water is more than just two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen. It’s the unappreciated ingredient to our life’s very being. Water is the lifeblood of our bodies, our economy, our nation and our well-being. Without it, survival would be a challenge but in an age where we’ve forgotten our origins and have become blind to our needs and satisfying only our wants, water is one of the natural resources that has suffered heavily from our disregard.

Each day, more than a billion people don’t have access to clean water and more than two billion don’t have access to adequate sanitation facilities. It’s a shame as the world’s population expands, those numbers are also growing. The quality of water in the world doesn’t solely influence and shape human poverty, wealth and education but it is an important issue that creates ripples on all aspects of our ecosystem, economic activities and our overall well-being. It is a key role in survival and if we as a world can’t see the major concern for clean water and sanitation now, regret will be on the horizon.


Continue reading article...

 
 
Current Mood: content
 
 
westlifefan
17 March 2011 @ 12:30 pm
newsvine: World Water Day Profiles: founders Gary White and Matt Damon of Water.org  
Water has always been an important cause to me. I feel like personally, it's something we can all agree on without politics getting in the way or being diplomatic and politically correct. In honour of World Water Week, I present to you two profiles on the co-founders of Water.org:



Newsvine
World Water Day Profile: Co-Founder, Gary White of Water.org



Water is the hub of life and often, with the way life is demanding of our lifestyles, we take it for granted. We forget that the water cycle is also the life cycle and because of the devastating amount of countries struggling without clean water today, thousands of families are torn apart as the repercussions of unclean water bring about unpreventable diseases and often, death. It is known that every fifteen seconds a child dies from a waterborne disease. It's been noted that nearly one billion people lack access to safe water and someone who has seen the affects of the water crisis firsthand is Gary White, co-founder of Water.org. White’s become a leader in his own right, involving himself in a dynamic and remarkable vision for changing the world.


Continue reading article...


Matt Damon has always been a personal hero of mine in terms of writing and when I learned he was involved with White's organization back in 2009, I was further enamoured by him and his efforts to make a difference.



Newsvine
World Water Day Profile: Co-Founder, Matt Damon of Water.org



The quality of water and the quality of life, in all its infinite forms are critical parts of the overall ongoing health of our planet, our future and most importantly, ourselves. Water is vital to our existence and considering how life has progressed, it’s become an essential need that man has now often overlooked. We will never know the full worth of water until the well is dry and in some developing countries, growing up without water is a norm. There are nearly one billion people in this world who lack access to clean drinking water and it’s a heartbreaking truth that every fifteen seconds a child under the age of five dies from a waterborne disease. Someone who’s adamant on making sure clean water becomes a necessity in every country is one of the founders of Water.org, Matt Damon.


Continue reading article...
 
 
Current Mood: busy
Current Music: heroes ~ david bowie
 
 
westlifefan
09 March 2011 @ 02:58 pm
newsvine - movie review: the adjustment bureau  
Love. What is it? Most times it's made up of coincedences which intertwine with chance and fate and can be tormentful as time passes but true love? True love stories never have endings. They start, each day you're with the other; love stays fresh and true when you're with the one that matters most to you. Afterall, love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles and leaps fences, can penetrate walls to arrive at its destination full of hope. Love is about the battle.

Check out my latest review on a film, I highly recommend: The Adjustment Bureau...

Newsvine
Movie Review: The Adjustment Bureau



It is said that each man is the architect of his own fate as he dreams of his destiny, without fear and yearns to make it a reality for when the time is right. However, we are guided through life with the notion that we have our own decisions to make, tinkering with the thought of choices and freewill. But is freewill a misconception? Is our fate already predetermined?

George Nolfi’s directorial debut The Adjustment Bureau dabbles with the concept that there is only an appearance of freewill and that all of life’s major choices are predetermined by a higher authority and the path they’ve chosen for us. Nolfi, who also wrote the screenplay loosely based on Phillip K. Dick’s short story, “The Adjustment Team”, dives deep into the age old debate of freewill vs. fate with a fresh spin on the philosophies of life and theology, with regards to fate, destiny, chance and the greater picture of our very being.

Continue reading article...

 
 
Current Mood: working
Current Music: love me like a rock ~ paul simon
 
 
westlifefan
03 March 2011 @ 09:46 pm
newsvine - don't you forget about david cook: american idol season 10 farewell song revealed  

I'm sure the lot of you have flailed today, lost your ovaries, screamed to the top of your lungs in excitement and like me, burned down a building and walked away only to hope freeze frame applies in real life and give the best goshdang fist pump in the world!

David Cook is back friends. He's back and better than ever. I was texting with Em aka [livejournal.com profile] storminmay earlier today and we both mutually love the flailing and the honest fact that his music has the power to bring all of us together and create this bond. It's adorable. I love it! I had the chance today without even realizing it to write a little something over at my Newsvine column. Be sure to check it out and let me know what you think of the Simple Minds' cover David's created.



Newsvine
Don't You Forget About David Cook: American Idol Season 10 Farewell Song Revealed



During the week of March 8 on American Idol, David Cook, the winner of the popular reality competition’s seventh season returns with a musical treat. His latest song, a cover of the 1985 hit by Simple Minds, “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” will make its debut next week as this year’s send-off track for the departing contestants of the show’s tenth season.

This is a big surprise for all of his fans as they’ve waited eagerly for new music from the multi-platinum seller since his successful self-titled debut album back in 2008, selling more than 1.4 million copies along with his American Idol coronation single, “The Time of my Life” becoming the highest-selling in the show’s history.


Continue reading article...

 
 
Current Mood: chipper
Current Music: don't you (forget about me) ~ david cook