Note From the Editor
VOLUME 4 ISSUE 3
Editor in Chief
Hello FutuRéale Readers, It has been an interesting few months with the magazine and things are about get even better! We have more columns than ever and we have a loyal base of editors and contributors writing EVERY month. We have grown and you are growing with us. It is so perfect that it is now Spring the time of growth and flourishing and our magazine is doing just that!
Editor in Chief
So as per usual, enjoy and pass it on! Shawn Shapiro
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This month our cover piece was written by the ever talented Olena Protsiv, a fantastic writer who has a passion for the craft. Her depiction and story on K.C Collins really is a piece to read and enjoy. As usual we have your favorite columns and some out there articles to tantalize your brain.
O nline Content Editor
Editor in Chief
Anastasia Rokina Lindsay Romeo Olivia Dorazio Jess Silver
Contributing Staff Poet Oneal Walters
Contributing Writers Devin Million-Osborne Karolina Wisniewski Lindsay Romeo Samantha Lui Melissa Lang Chris Allaire Abby Plener Ilana Perry Jess Silver Dany Pen Jess Morton Sean Tepper Daniel Kwan Mark Kinash Sarah Doctor Olena Protsiv Marcus Pidek Oneal Walters Craig Wilkins Vicky Tobianah Olivia D’Orazio
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04 The Gardasil Vaccine
TABLE OF CONTENTS
05 The philosophy of Love Karolina Wisniewski
08 Finding a Roommate Vicky Tobianah
10 Beyond the Rack Ilana Perry
12 Green Goddess Abby Plener
14 Green Goddess 2 Abby Plener
16 St. Patrick’s Day Lindsay Romeo
18 St. Patrick’s Ilana Perry
20 10 best places to celebrate St. Patrick’s day in Toronto Ilana Perry
21 Flittering Pages Jess Silver
23 Brain Food for Thought Daniel Kwan
25 Get Smarter by Eating Smarter Lindsay Romeo
26 The Independent Spirit Awards Craig Wilkins
28 Celebrity Designers: The good, the bad, and the ugly Chris Allaire
31 Looking for Youtube Glory Samantha Lui
33 10 of the Best Board Games for Adults Devin Million-Osborne
35 Are you wagging me? Marcus Pidek
37 The Textbook Debate Dany Pen
38 Apartment Gardening Sarah Doktor
39 Movie Horse Races: The Hollywood Stock Exchange Mark Kinash
40 Interview with Howard Nemetz on the YTZ Sitcom Mr. Young Jess Morton
42 The Good Food Box: The easy way to eat locally Jess Morton
43 Oneal Poetry Corner Oneal Walters
44 Oneal Walters’ Poem Oneal Walters
45 It’s Pretty Hype: The Hype Machine is not just your Average Music Blog Melissa Lang
46 Blue Jays Preview Sean Tepper
48 Zilberschmuck: Portal to Jewellery Imaginations Marcus Pidek
51 Winter Activities Olena Protsiv
53 K.C Collins Olena Protsiv
56 Ross Morrow: Master Silversmith Marcus Pidek
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Photograph of K.C Collins taken by Sandy Sokolowski
Protecting Your Bits: The HPV Vaccine THERE HAS BEEN MUCH CONTROVERSY surrounding the relatively new HPV vaccines. Many describe it as a wonder-drug, preventing the spread of genital warts and HPV, and even preventing certain cancers. However, vaccine oppositions have declared that the young drug has disastrous outcomes—paralysis, severe allergic reactions, and death. How can the medical community be so divided? And, more importantly, should you consider the vaccine for yourself or a loved one?
The Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is a sexually transmitted virus, of which there are no symptoms. However, HPV is known to cause several medical complications like genital warts and several types of cancers, including cervical, vaginal and penile cancers. Those who do contract HPV – and who do not develop warts or cancers – are often cured without even knowing they had the virus. As of now, there are two HPV vaccines. The most popular one is called Gardasil, and is presented by Merck. The Gardasil vaccine works like all vaccines do by producing antibodies to fight off an infection, should you ever contract one. 4
“[The vaccine] stimulates your body to produce antibodies against that existing infecting agent,” says Dr. Bee, a physician who practices in the Toronto area. “So if you are infected, your body has the immune system already geared up with the antibodies that will attack that organism and prevent it from causing an infection.” The FDA first approved Gardasil in 2006 for the prevention of HPV. It has since been injected into elementary schools to protect girls in the seventh grade. The second vaccine available is called Cervarix and is marketed by GlaxoSmithKline. Cervarix is slightly newer than Gardasil, having only been FDA approved in 2009. The Gardasil vaccine protects against four strains of HPV – 6 and 11 (which cause genital warts), and 16 and 18 (the cancercausing types). Cervarix protects against types 16 and 18. The vaccine is administered in three doses. The second dose is to be taken two months after the first, and the third and final dose taken six months after the first. In clinical trials, Gardasil seemed to react favourably with participants. The most common side effects were pain, swelling and bruising at the injection site – the same reactions that most people have with any vaccine or injection. Some participants reported fever, nausea and dizziness. It is not recommended for women who are nursing or pregnant. At one time, the HPV vaccination was only recommended for women between the ages of nine and 26. Now, the demographic of people recommended to protect themselves through vaccination has expanded to any woman, sexually active or not, and even men. “They’re now recommending it for women of every age, whether you’ve been sexually active or been exposed to HPV before,” Dr.
Bee explains. “It’s also been recommended now to give it to males because, not only will it reduce the spread to cancer, but penile cancer is also associated with HPV.” The greatest deterrent to this vaccine is the cost. While seventh grade girls in Toronto’s public school system receive the vaccine free of cost, the retail value is high above what most young adults can afford. All three doses of the Gardasil vaccine retails for anywhere between $300 and $500, while Cervarix usually goes for around $400. “Probably the number one [disadvantage to the vaccine] is the cost,” Dr. Bee says. “But now a lot of patients are receiving it through the school system.” While it seems like this drug has no negative side-effects, there remains a strong opposition. The Internet is riddled with extreme cases claiming permanent injury or death at the hand of the vaccine. However, Dr. Bee assures me that these cases are either severe exaggerations, incredibly special cases or simply hoaxes. He cautions me that, while the drug appears to have no short or long term side effects, to read the ingredients. Every body is different and someone who is allergic to an ingredient in the drug could experience an adverse effect. “It protects women against cancer,” says Dr. Bee. “But it also prevents things like abnormal pap tests…It’s a very safe vaccine.” If you haven’t already, speak to your doctor about protecting your bits from HPV. --rr FUTURÉALE
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IF FREUD WAS RIGHT, if all human motives can be traced down to one of two sources, the eros (the sex instinct) and the thanatos (the death instinct), many would argue this makes for a somewhat bleak picture of humanity. He’s been accused of reductionism and oversimplification, but a casual browse through a magazine or perusal of television channels suggests that he may have had a point. Whether he is correct in these assertions or not, it’s worth asking how such pronouncements affect an individual life. To put it slightly less delicately, we might ask why we should care.
In the case of the eros, this translates, quite literally, into a fixation on sexual instincts. But for reasons of propriety and political correctness, society has dressed this up as the ever illusive and highly desirable concept of love. And what force those four letters have had on the history of humanity! Wars have been fought, monuments erected, masterpieces written and painted—all for the sake of love, or at least some incarnation of it. The idea of love signals to the very core of what it means to be human, it is the primary driving force behind our actions (it lifts us up where we belong; it’s a many splendid thing). And what have we got to show for our collective obsession with love? I don’t intend to launch into a tirade about how love FUTURÉALE
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By Karolina Wisniewski
doesn’t really exist or how it’s overrated or even how terrible it is. In many instances, the primacy of love transcends linguistic, cultural and historical boundaries and unites us in an intensely human way. The investment banker on Wall Street and the rice paddy worker in Bhutan may not have much in common, but they probably both remember the one that got away.
of the ever illusory and slippery idea that is love, for their sake, but also for our own. What, if any, is the underlying logic of this force from which so much anxiety and despair sprout; which is enough to render even the most level-headed individual exceptionally and hopelessly foolish? Let’s take a look at some of the different ways this conundrum has been tackled.
For all the ink that’s been spilled for the sake of love (admittedly, much of it badly), we still seem to be incredibly far from understanding its value, justification, function and origins. In a word, we all seem to be equally dumbfounded by love, especially the unrequited variety. It’s perhaps the only area of life where no one is the wiser, especially not when experiencing it first hand. An understanding of love amounts to more than just armchair philosophizing. A dissection of the concept of love is perhaps one of the few philosophical ventures that we can apply directly to concrete events in our lives. Perhaps such understanding may even lend a hand in coping with love that’s been lost. It may be a long-held maxim that we cannot learn from the mistakes of others, but anyone who’s felt the pang of romance gone awry (which each and every one of us has) will probably agree that it’s worth trying. At any rate, some attention deserves to be paid to those who have tried to make sense
As a disclaimer, I should note that I don’t presume to do justice to any of the following philosophers or their ideas in the blurbs that follow. All these ideas are incredibly multifaceted and complex. An almost endless amount of writing and research has been dedicated to each of these great thinkers, and there are still all kinds of ideas hidden within these works that have yet to be realized. I do, however, intend to raise possible interpretations of these works. Assuredly, there exist different, perhaps even opposed interpretations, but I’d argue that the aim of philosophy is less to hand down universal truths, and more to stimulate a good discussion. Descartes: Commonly referred to as the father of modern philosophy, Descartes’ famous pronouncement that ‘he thinks, therefore he is’ forever changed the course of philosophical thought. But what is it that he 5
body problem: if my identity is my mind or my soul, and if this is separate from my body, how do these two separate entities interact? Back to the topic at hand, Descartes only briefly mentioned the topic of love and when he did so, he said the following: “nerves that go to the heart produce emotions as a result of the consistency of blood, that is, when a certain consistency is reached, it expands in the heart, relaxing the nerves and producing a feeling of joy in the mind” . Although Descartes’ approach can be updated by neurobiologists, whether love is the result of synapses firing in the brain, or the relaxation of nerves, is means by this? Descartes began his philosophy by a systematic process of doubt; essentially, he partook in a process of elimination so that he could get past external appearances and arrive at an ultimate, universal reality. He found he was able to question almost everything, except the fact that he was a thinking being. In doing so he introduced the philosophy to the mindbeside the point. In putting forth this idea, Descartes reduced all emotional and mental process as subordinate to routine, perhaps even predetermined biological events. It’s not a stretch to say this devalues all talk of feelings, soul mates and destiny, if not invalidating it all together. And yet there are many (scientists and otherwise) who hold this view today. It’s a counterintuitive approach to say the very least – the intensity of the emotions felt when falling in or out of love seems to suggest it’s more than just an illusion brought about by hormonal fluctuations. Perhaps adopting this kind of distance will make coping with the misfortunes of love easier? I’ll try it out next time and let you know.
love is a multilayered concept. He noted that romantic love “is evoked by the lovable features the other bears” . He continues to say that “it is ‘pagan’, by which he does not mean to denounce it, but merely says that it belongs to a state of nature rather than of grace…Its charms, along with it fragility, transiency, fickleness, anxiousness and jealousy” are not eternal. I’d argue that Kierkegaard seems to have shot straight to the heart of the matter (pun intended). romantic love is as fickle as it is exhilarating – it is by nature not built to last. That’s not to say that it never will, but there is nothing about it that imposes permanence or durability. Kierkegaard continues with his rather bleak account of romantic love in arguing that it is ultimately a form of selflove, since “in loving my spouse or children or friends I am in love with the wider circle of myself, my other extended self” . And with this, Kierkegaard drops a bomb by subverting our typical understanding of love as the epitome of selflessness. Is this to say that someone who would sacrifice anything for those they love is really acting selfishly? As hard a pill as this may be to swallow, Kierkegaard may be
Kierkegaard: As an extremely pious Christian, Kierkegaard viewed the leap of faith to be the purest and most perfect form of love. However, he acknowledged that 6
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onto something. In helping, providing for or taking care of those we love, we try to prevent harm from befalling them, but to what end? If the act of developing a relationship serves to bring continued happiness unto ourselves, isn’t it selfish at least to some degree? Breakup speeches concerning “how selfish it would be for me to stay in this relationship” may breed eye rolls and induce gag reflexes but nevertheless, at the risk of giving individuals everywhere a quick and easy excuse for bowing out of a relationship, there’s something about Kierkegaard’s argument that seems to persist. Sartre: The best place to begin consideration of Sartre’s philosophy is with his claim that existence precedes essence. Sartre believed that our existence is primary, and whatever we do with it (whatever essence we create) follows; we are free in the most basic form of the word. This sense of possibility has a paralyzing rather than liberating effect; it is a burden. Sartre thought many of us spend most of our lives ignorant of our freedom,
because its realization would create an enormous amount of anxiety and place a huge responsibility on us. He referred to this ignorance as an inauthentic form of existence. Only a consciousness of death, he said, can awaken us from the inauthentic lives many of us lead. In one of his novels, The Age of Reason, Sartre’s protagonist is in pursuit of a woman, and presumably, such pursuit is an attempt to reach authentic existence. The character strives to access authenticity via love. He is disillusioned to find that impressions of their interactions as real or meaningful are only fleeting; his feelings are unrequited, which means that to her, he is “the other” – as anonymous and interchangeable as anyone else. Ultimately, Sartre illustrates that his protagonist spends much of the novel in an inauthentic mode of existence. At best, love can only provide a momentary illusion of authenticity . Reading Sartre is like engaging in a form of self-flagellation – it’s hard to emerge from a work of his feeling anything other than listless and dejected. Such sentiments
aside, the ideas he raises seem compelling. An individual’s index of failed relationships seems to suggest that we couldn’t have been right about each of them, that they couldn’t have been as perfect as they seemed. If they had been, they likely would have persevered. Perhaps, to a certain degree at least, Sartre is correct that we tend to romanticize or idealize the relationships we are in. But is he justified in his assertion that all love is ultimately selfdeception? That it’s inherently worthless? The answer will likely vary depending on who you ask. However, if you consider some of these positions in light of each other, the theories seem to conflate. Kierkegaard asserted that romantic love is ultimately selfish; Descartes maintained that it’s grounded in biological processes; Sartre asserted that its inauthenticity veiled in illusions of reality and worth. Aren’t all these philosophers using different arguments to arrive at the same conclusion? That love, for all the wonderful feelings it conjures up in us, may not be a fabrication, but perhaps a hyperbole? This may be difficult to measure, but it’s less important what beliefs are held by the population at large: and more significant whether they are durable when put to the test, that is, when they’re applied to individual circumstances. Love may be a wonderful thing, but the reality is that it appears, at times uninvited, in an individual’s life and turns it, for better or worse, into a three ring circus. That’s not to say there’s no sustainability in romantic unions, but there’s a phase in each relationship, even those that stand the test of time, when doubt rears its ugly head. Whether one is on the receiving side of romantic injury or whether they’re dishing it out, it’s helpful to consider what can be learned form thinkers like the ones looked at here. --rr
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Finding a Roommate, Web 2.0-Style
By Vicky Tobianah
STUDENTS GEARING UP FOR UNIVERSITY ASK FRIENDS FOR ADVICE on which the courses to
take, which professors to learn from and which clubs to join. But one of the most important decisions students often forget about is choosing the right roommate. A study conducted at Dartmouth College by Bruce Sacerdote revealed that the GPA of their roommates significantly influenced students’ GPAs. Along with your academic success, your roommate will also influence your social circle, your sleeping and eating habits, and of course, your overall happiness. So before students spend their time back-to-school shopping, they should also invest significant time making sure they are compatible with their roommate. Lucky for today’s Gen Y students, there are resources students can use to help predict if they will get along with their roommates and help make the process less intimidating. Students can look up their potential roommates on many social networking sites and have an instant understanding of their likes, dislikes and personality. Students can search specific interests on sites like Facebook and Linkedin by location, and then narrow down their search to students who share their same interests. Students can also benefit by moving their roommate search online. On the University of Toronto’s housing website, an app called 8
A study conducted at Dartmouth College by Bruce Sacerdote revealed that the GPA of their roommates significantly influenced students’ GPAs.
“Roommate Finder” was launched last year, which helps like-minded students find each other. After filling out long and detailed questionnaires, students are matched with others who had similar responses. These questions don’t just ask about a student’s interests, they also ask about their study and sleeping habits and social lives. The questions range from listing your favorite type of music to answering how many days it takes for you to do your dishes. U of T launched this app because they recognized that students want as much information as possible before they move in with someone. Because of social networking sites like Facebook, students are used to having personal information at their fingertips. This app is the next logical step. “It’s the direction that everybody’s going in and we wanted to go in as well,” said Jennifer Bennett, U of T’s manager of student housing. Other universities are following suit. York University, Mount Royal University and the University of Calgary have started to use StarRez, an online program that allows students to choose their roommates and their rooms. “We wanted to give the
students more ownership,” says TJ Fedyk, manager of occupancy at the University of Calgary, which started allowing students to pick their roommates last year. Similar to Roommate Finder, students answer questions about anything and everything from drinking habits to political views. StarRez generates a list of the top 20 most compatible people and allows students to view their matches’ profiles, much like a dating site. While these sites are helping students choose compatible roommates, they are also encouraging students to become friends with only like-minded people and decrease the chance of meeting a more diverse group of people, one of the reasons many students choose to go to university in the first place. One of the biggest problems is that students do not learn how to deal with people they do not get along with nor do they learn proper conflict management skills, which they will need when faced with diverse peers in their future workplaces. “As you leave behind high school to redefine and even reinvent yourself as adult, you need exposure to an array of different ideas, backgrounds and perspectives—not FUTURÉALE
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a cordon of clones,” Maureen Dows of the New York Times wrote. University housing departments are still grappling with this downside. “The students who don’t know each other in advance take their roommate discussions more seriously. They come with fewer expectations of perfection, so it’s easier to get them to talk to each other,” says Michael Porritt, executive director of residences
sonalized match because it’s not just a computer prioritizing questions,” says Mr. Porritt. “We had a review last year about whether or not we should do more profiling for students to be more successful. When we researched other institutions we found that, really, there were mixed results,” says Irene Thompson, director of student housing at the University of Guelph.
After filling out long and detailed questionnaires, students are matched with others who had similar responses. and student housing at McGill University, which has about 1,000 shared rooms. These problems are one of the reason’s McGill relies on the traditional approach: a lottery system assigns students to certain residences and then floor fellows help match up students. “It provides a more perFUTURÉALE
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Because of these mixed results, the best advice is to have an open mind. Even students who match well on paper may not be compatible in real life. Schools should follow McGill’s example, where transfers are not granted until students have lived with each other for at least three weeks, at
which point they have usually managed to resolve their differences. You may not always be best friends but that does not mean that you can’t live together peacefully. Make the expectations clear and write them down, such as keeping track of money spent on joint items and creating a chore chart. Most of all, remember that little things that bother you on day one often won’t matter in a month – you’ll be too busy making new friends, studying for your classes and discovering more about yourself. --mt and rr
By Ilana Perry
IMAGINE YOU ARE TAKING A STROLL DOWN THE STREETS OF PARIS. You angle your head just in time for your wide eyes to outline the interior of an expensive store. They promptly trail to the store name, Le..tu..la..mon..trying to pronounce it, but you give up almost instantly. You think to yourself, that if you cannot even pronounce the name, there is no way you can afford what is in the boutique. You allow your neck to manoeuvre your head in the opposite direction, and attempt to continue on, but something is dragging you back. Maybe it’s the elegant look of your favourite colour fabric draped over the mannequin, or maybe it’s the intriguing smell that lingers in your nostrils of those leather boots that are calling your name. As hard as it is to ignore it all, you pick up your feet and walk the other way because you know you could never afford it, so why even bother. Now, fantasize taking daily shopping sprees in Paris and New York City boutiques without the worry of the large price tags. Sound appealing? Just wait; now picture all that without having to move from your living 10
the R ACK
room. Wipe the drool from your lip and I’ll reveal the low-down on my hush-hush secret. There is only one special website that sells high-end merchandise for low-end prices, and it is my personal online shopping secret. Online shopping has revolutionized the way we go about our purchasing. There is no longer excitement when we see a 50% off sign in store; it is now all about thinking, “could I get that belt at a cheaper price online?” The Internet has made it possible to buy and sell everything and anything, from animals to signed Michael Jordan jerseys. Every time I step into a mall I notice fewer shopping bags leaving the stores. I tend to focus in on the employees standing around twiddling their thumbs praying for an interested customer to walk through the doors. This got me thinking, what has online shopping done to our retail stores? Is it possible for online shopping to completely take over, leaving malls to be abandoned? Who knows, I guess it’s just a matter of time until we find out. That is beside the point though, the real question
that I’m sure has been digging at you since beginning this article is, “where can I find this online shopping secret you speak so highly of ?” As I was browsing through websites that promise to send you $25 off a Gucci handbag, I came across a very prominent page. It turned out to be an exclusive shopping club catering to men, women and children. Name brand clothing and other high-end merchandise are sold through the website, attached with low price tags. The way the site works is almost like a game. There are many events which take place at the same time. The events last for approximately two days and within those two days you can shop until you drop, or in this case, until your fingers start to cramp. If you don’t get to an item quick enough it will be sold out. After the two days if you did not make your move fast enough, you lose, game over. Well, that is, until the next day when a new event opens. I spent a large amount of my pay cheque on that first day of discovering www. beyondtherack.com. Yes, there, my secret is out; beyondtherack.com is the main FUTURÉALE
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arts.culture.living Pictured right; some brands featured on beyondtherack dot com. Other brands include: Fendi, Versace, Jimmy Choo, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Balenciaga, Marc Jacobs, Rudsak, and Police.
ingredient to successful online shopping. The member’s only site started off with a large amount of clothing and accessory events and now has massive events for everything from baby strollers to modern household furniture. It provides something for literally every type of shopper; you name it they either have had or will have an event for it. Scarves, glasses, perfume, watches, cooking utensils, luxurious trips to foreign countries around the world, oh my. It’s like your own personal shopper; it has exactly what you want when you want
it’s worth your time. If there is truly nothing that interests you on a specific day, just scroll to the “Upcoming events” tab and see what will be held in the weeks ahead. When I signed-up to become a member on www.beyondtherack.com almost a year ago, I was welcomed in immediately, no charge and no waitlist. Now, with an exceedingly large member base attached to it, it’s not as simple as just signing up anymore. There is a waitlist, is it not amusing to hear that there is a waitlist to sign up for an online shopping site. To everyone who is de-
are they still bringing in enough money? Are malls going to become extinct just like Dinosaurs, where archaeologists will have to sweep away dirt to reveal the food court? So many questions flooded my head, was it worth it to save a measly $30 by shopping online, rather than shopping in store and supporting your local mall? These are questions that no one, not even I, have the answers to. I guess sitting back and watching it all pan out is the best that we can do. Until we have some further information, keep doing
There is no longer excitement when we see a 50% off sign in-store; it is now all about thinking, “could I get that belt at a cheaper price online?” it at a ridiculously good price. My first purchase was an Ed Hardy travel bag, store price I would say roughly around $180, Beyondtherack’s price.. $80. It is definitely stirring up a large pot of rivalry with its main competitor Ebay. www.beyondtherack.com has taken online shopping to a whole new level. It has allowed for every shopaholic’s dream to materialize. There is not only Gucci, Prada and Juicy Couture events; there is classy clothing from high-end brands such as Silvio Liu, which you most likely haven’t heard of because the only other way of getting your hands on that fashion would be to coast down the streets of New York City or Paris. Along with each event there is a short description of the brand, just from reading that you know right away if FUTURÉALE
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bating on whether or not to bother with the site now that there is a waitlist, my advice would be to go for it; is more than worth it. You won’t regret it, fellow shopaholic’s promise. Remain on the waitlist; once you’re in, it will be the most rewarding gift you could give to. Even though www.beyondtherack. com is my guilty pleasure and I couldn’t be separated from it even if my computer was pried out from my muscle spasm fingers; I got to pondering again about how not only this website, but all online shopping discount sites affect retail stores. If everyone is doing their purchasing online, how are smaller companies paying the bills? It began to worry me that there is a huge possibility of many stores going out of business. Does shopping online even affect retail stores;
what works for you, whether it is shopping in a mall, or finding those impressive deals online. Hey, who wouldn’t want to save $100 on a Gucci purse and at the same time have NYC and Paris boutiques radiating off your computer screen? I know, keep nodding your heads in agreement, I’m right there with you. --mt and rr
GREEN GODDESS Up-cycling through the Seasons
When did fur fashion become eco-chic? VANCOUVER NATIVE PAM BEATTIE
creates eco-friendly vintage furniture under her label Venetian Decor, by re-purposing old fur clothing, buttons, brooches, and other vintage items into beautiful household designs. Pam sees her craft as an opportunity to “preserve our history by taking your grandmother’s vintage fur coat, which she probably wore with great pride” and turning it into something that “you can have in your home and cherish”. No animals are harmed in the process and no shame is felt by parading around the streets in fur. Pam promotes other environmentally-friendly practices through her business by using VOC-free paints with a lavender beeswax top coat, as well as natural wools and other natural materials. My grandmother was a fur coat model and has always been revered in my family as the epitome of elegance and class. As her granddaughter, I was touched by Pam’s efforts to pay tribute to that heritage instead of categorically rejecting because it doesn’t suit our modern, green-loving values. Yet the youthful cynic me wondered if Pam and I weren’t getting too swept up in the romance of this idea, while ignoring the fact that fur and eco-friendly don’t usually go hand in hand. Aren’t we still supporting the idea of exploiting animals for fashion? How can fur be eco-chic? Though the notion may seem counterintuitive to some, Pam and many other boutique designers are on the cusp of the up12
cycling trend, a movement that is redefining how we reduce and reuse. While Pam’s designs may symbolize the previous killing of an animal, they are also preventing vintage fur coats from being thrown into landfills. Instead of allowing materials to go to waste, up-cyclers seek to find a new purpose for them while using as little energy as possible. For many artists and craftsmen, imagining a new life for these products not only satisfies their creativity, but allows them to preserve prized items, a sentiment which Beattie herself takes to heart. In this way, up-cycling is viewed by many as a way of fostering a sense of community between
negate the environmental cost of manufacturing something new, and avoids the use of cheap labour, these clothing lines can be more expensive because the designers have to pay for the collection and transportation of second hand materials. The up-cycling movement began with the publishing of “Cradle to Cradle” in 2002, written by founder of the EPEA Michael Braugart and his American architect partner William Mcdonaugh. Their belief is that the economy can be restructured in a way that eliminates waste entirely Together, they founded Mcdonaugh Braugart Design Chemisty, which seeks to certify businesses
Pam and many other boutique designers are on the cusp of the up-cycling trend, a movement that is redefining how we reduce and reuse. local artists as they are constantly challenging each other to find hidden treasures in their very own neighbourhoods and turn them into masterpieces. Websites like www.etsy.com and www.freecycle.com encourage consumers from around the world to sell their used items to those looking to make new ones. This trend has been enthusiastically embraced by the interior design and fashion worlds including Canadian clothing brands Pre-loved, Paper People Clothing, and Flora & Fauna. However, while up-cycled clothes
which produces items in a way that they can be recycled back into the economy instead of recycled into something new. Up-cyclers criticize recycling for wasting more energy than it saves, as it takes more effort to transform recycled materials into something new rather than finding a new purpose for the original material itself. Braugart and Mcdonaugh refer to recycling as “downcycling” because it turns recycled materials into lesser products which eventually become waste. Another major criticism of recycling FUTURÉALE
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PHOTO OF PAM BEAT TIE
Up-cycling discourages hyper-consumerism by making the most out of what we already have. which is solved by up-cyclers, is that recycling makes people feel they are entitled to be endless consumers and long as they recycle what they buy. Up-cycling discourages hyper-consumerism by making the most out of what we already have. In 2009, TerraCycle launched the first Canadian Upcycling Program, which pays organizations like Kraft Canada to collect specific kinds of waste which can than be transformed into new products. I won’t be wearing Grandma’s fur coat anytime soon, but I also won’t be throwing it away. For Pam Beattie and other upcyclers the answer to these past indiscretions isn’t to let them go to waste, but to re-purpose them with a whole new way of forward-thinking. --mt and rr
By Abby Plener
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The Beauty of Having a Brain
There are a lot of easy ways to be green. The problem however, is finding them. As green products becomes more popular, it takes some serious consumer savvy to penetrate beyond the marketing ploys and find those companies which are truly committed to sensible, eco-friendly principles. This month, I made it my mission to find out more about green health and beauty products. Personally, my feminist self was somewhat offended by how much the advertising for these products sought to cater women’s sensibilities, without providing any concrete information as to why they labelled themselves as “eco-friendly”. As I perused through informa-
tion on “green”, “natural”, and “organic” beauty lines, I felt like I was in a bad birth control commercial. According to these marketing campaigns, being green is not only good for the planet but will allow consumers to discover their inner beauty, be their best selves, and experience life to the fullest. How convenient! Sappy messages and sarcasm aside, here’s what you need to know about buying organic beauty products as well as some Canadian companies who have the eco-credentials to back up their boasting.
Look for the Label Any business can claim that their products are “organic”, but only those labelled as “certified organic” or “100% organic” are guaranteed to have ingredients entirely sourced from organic farms, which themselves are officially recognized by some sort of governing body. Anything simply labelled as “organic” or “made with organic ingredients” can be seriously misleading and may contain little or no organic ingredients at all. In the search for green beauty lines, you’ll also come across products labelled as “natural”. Like organic products, natural products are generally perceived as healthier because no toxins, pesticides, or chemicals have been used in their production process which could potentially be harmful to your skin. However, there are no regulations concerning “natural” products so any company can simply use the label for marketing purposes.
Why You Should Buy Them Not only are organic products healthier than other alternatives, but they support organic 14
farms which promote more sustainable practices by avoiding the use synthetic chemicals and fertilizers, which are highly detrimental to our soil and water. Moreover, these products are often of better quality simply because they are made with better ingredients which have not been exposed to harmful pesticides.
Where to Find Them Well.ca: This website provides access to over 3,000 natural, certified organic products, including health and beauty brands, as well as products which are vegan, biodegradable, and made with environmentally friendly packaging. Lilou-Organics.com: This online store will fulfill all your green beauty needs and provides plenty of helpful information for those new to the trend, including details on the ingredients used in every product. Their products are thoroughly researched to provide the best possible organic beauty options. Furthermore, they are committed to supporting ethical companies which don’t test their products on animals, and they do their best to find the best brand names Canada has to offer. MaxandMia.ca: This site is devoted to organic and natural beauty products – though you’ll have to look specifically for those labelled as “100% organic”. However, it is a 100% Canadian owned and operated company so they win points for being based more locally. They challenge themselves to find the most ethical and eco-conscious brands out there, and have a blog with some helpful ecorelated links. FUTURÉALE
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The Business of Being Green When I first sat down to write this article, I assumed I’d be focusing on beauty and cosmetics companies like The Body Shop and Lush which are more well-known for their health and beauty lines and are perceived as advocates of green products and environmental issues. In an effort to be a more critical ecoconsumer, I thought I’d look into these companies’ policies and see how well that image holds up. While The Body Shop seeks out certified organic producers from around the globe through their Community Fair Trade program, one has to wonder how much energy is being used to transport these products internationally. Perhaps in this regard, Canadian companies like the ones discussed above are more environmentally-friendly because they seek out local brands, though the CFT definitely deserves credit for sustaining fair trade relationships
with producers around the world. They do seek to reduce their carbon footprint through their own business practices, have introduced plastic bottles made of 100% recycled material, use recycled paper bags, ensure that none of their products are tested on animals, and provide detailed information on their website discussing the other environmentally friendly policies they follow. Likewise, Lush supports many environmental groups and policy initiatives through their business, and aims to use as minimal packaging possible, incorporating packaging that is recyclable, compostable, or biodegradable. They are also committed to reducing the amount of waste produced by their business, and claim to seek out ingredients which are produced sustainably, though their website doesn’t provide any information on what “sustainably” means in this case. Moreover, they seek out ethically responsible fuels while transporting products internationally. While neither of these companies boasts a complete line of organic products, supporting their businesses also means supporting the green policies they aim to uphold. However, for the conscious green consumer, buying products from smaller, more locally-based companies will always be a more sustainable act than supporting international companies like the Body Shop or Lush. Though ads for “green” beauty products may inspire women to free their inner-selves, consumers should think carefully about the eco-cost of their purchases. --rr
By Abby Plener FUTURÉALE
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op of Auxerre, for 12 years when he joined a monastery. Once he was then a bishop he was suddenly having dreams of the people of Ireland calling to Patrick and telling him to come to Ireland to tell them about God. With the Pope’s blessings Patrick was soon on his way to Ireland. Many of the Gaelic Irish peoples were pagan, and Patrick converted many of them into Christians. Patrick was baptizing and confirming people all across Ireland. Patrick preached all over Ireland, and although he was arrested a few times, he managed to escape every time. He created monasteries all over Ireland.
MANY OF US FROM CANADA, factual information about St. Patrick himself,
Great Britain, Australia, the United States and New Zealand, celebrate St. Patrick’s Day as a day for drinking far too much green beer, wearing tons of green, and putting on a phony Irish accent. But how did all of this come to be? And what is the real meaning of St. Patrick’s Day? There is a lot more to St. Patrick’s Day than you may think. St. Patrick’s Day was originally a rich religious tradition that seems to have changed its meaning over time.
The History: Who is St. Patrick and what did he do? St. Patrick was actually not born Irish. It is unsure whether he was born in Scotland or Roman England, but nonetheless St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland. St. Patrick is a part of Ireland’s heritage, mostly because of his journey from corner to corner of Ireland during the 5th century. There is not a lot of certain 16
but we do know that his actual name was most likely Maewyn Succat, and then later on he became known as Patrick.
There are many legends associated with St. Patrick, the most well known are the symbols. One of the most popular is the three-leaved shamrock which was said to explain the notion of the Trinity, which are the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Another legend was that St. Patrick put a curse on poisonous snakes which then sent them into the sea and they drowned.
Why do we Believe it or not, Patrick grew up in England as Patrick’s Day? normally as you or me would have in Britain in the 5th century. Patrick was the son of Calpurnius who was a Roman-British army officer. Patrick’s life changed when pirates landed in south Wales, and stole Patrick among other children. Unfortunately, Patrick was sold as a slave in Ireland. In Ireland, he was locked up for most of the 6 years he was there. While he was imprisoned, transformations were happening to him. Patrick dreamed that he in fact saw God, and many say it was God who told Patrick to retreat on an escape boat which he then later did. He escaped to first Britain and then France. Patrick then studied under St. Germain, the bish-
St. Patrick’s journey lasted for over 20 years, and he died on March 17, AD 461, which is why we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day every year on March 17th. St. Patrick’s Day is really to celebrate the collective baptizing of Ireland. Over time, this day has become far less spiritual, when in fact it was originally a Catholic holy day. St. Patrick’s Day is now most commonly known as a day of the Irish. It is now a day to play tribute to Ireland. There are many well known symbols and icons associated with this tradition such as the leprechaun which is a Celtic fairy, the shamrock, the colour green and the pot of gold. FUTURÉALE
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Symbols and Icons: We see the Holy Spirit. This idea of threes may be also yourself at; Pogue Mahone, P.J. O’Brien’s, Irish them everywhere, but what do represented through past, present, and future Embassy, Grace O’Malley’s, Fionn MacCool’s, or sky, earth and underworld. and Fynn’s of Temple. they mean? The colour green: In the 19th century The leprechaun and the pot of gold: The leprechaun is a fairy, who is actually a 2 feet tall old man, and he is known for being solitary, not pleasant, and just makes shoes. The leprechaun is usually dressed looking like a typical shoe maker, such as wearing a leather apron. The leprechaun has a secret pot of gold that treasure hunters try to find. The treasure hunters can follow where the leprechaun is by the sound of the leprechaun’s shoe hammer. If the treasure hunters find the leprechaun, the leprechaun can escape by disappearing into thin air only when the treasure hunters look away, which the leprechaun tricks the treasure hunters into doing. Now the treasure hunters will never know where the pot of gold is hidden.
green became a symbolic colour for Ireland. In Ireland there is a lot of rain, and it is often misty, so the “Emerald Isle” is actually always
“Near a misty stream in Ireland in the hollow of a tree Live mystical, magical leprechauns who are clever as can be
green. Ireland is always beautifully green. Dressing green apparently brings good luck, and the most so on St. Patrick’s Day.
With their pointed ears, and turned up toes and little coats of green
PLACES TO GO IN TORONTO ON ST. PATRICK’S DAY
The leprechauns busily make their shoes and try hard not to be seen.
Listen to and Play Celtic Music!
Only those who really believe have seen these little elves And if we are all believers We can surely see for ourselves. (Irish Blessing)”
Go to McCarthy’s Pub, Whelan’s Gate, Tranzac Club, Dora Keogh’s or McVeigh’s Pub on St. Patrick’s Day for some live traditional Irish music, and musicians can join in!
Go to an authentic Irish Pub Downtown!
The shamrock: Numbers are significant Many pubs act as if they are Irish on St. Patrick’s for the Celts. Three is the most magical and sacred number for the Irish. The most important triad being the Father, the Son and FUTURÉALE
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Day; make sure you go to the REAL Irish pubs on St. Patrick’s Day! Here are some authentic Irish pubs downtown that you’re sure to enjoy 17
GOOD OL’ ST. PATRICK’S DAY
flows into your beer mug every March; it’s time to start canvassing pubs for the cheapest green beer and making trips to the mall to find the best fitting green and gold outfit. This is about the only time of the year where you can carry out an entire conversation in a lousy Irish accent, and not one person will hold it against you; unless you’re sober. This celebration makes it perfectly acceptable to dig through your jewelry box, to find and wear that four-leaf clover bracelet and necklace set you got from your aunt in grade four. As exciting as all of this is, how many of us actually took a minute to think of where all of this originated? Who is this so called St. Patrick and why does he have his very own day in March? Why in March, why not in…possibly…June? I know
how difficult it is to pry your saturated lips off your mug and wipe away the green beer mustache; but don’t you think you should at least have some insight into why you and all your friends are dressed from head-to-toe in green and dancing around a pub in March? St. Patrick’s day is more than just chugging green beer and taking part in your local parade. It is a traditional celebration of a life once lived in Ireland many decades ago. Saint Patrick was the patron Saint of Ireland; born around the year 387 he is thought to have actually had a part in leading Christianity to Ireland. There is not much known of him except what has been taken from his few divine autobiographical works, where he defined himself as a polite and well-hearted man. There is an abundance of stories and legends on who St. Patrick was and what he accomplished, that is it extremely difficult to find more than a few which are identical. The one that is most often used is the one in which starts from his teenage years. At the tender age of fourteen Saint Patrick was captured and taken as a slave until he was around twenty, which is when he finally escaped. While in captivity, he turned mostly to religion to guide him through the difficult days. Upon escaping his capturers he began to study priesthood and that is where it all began. He studied for years and years, travelled all around and met many influential people throughout his journeys. His name lays with many great Saints such as St. Valentine and as well St. Nicholas. So why is this celebration of a past Saint in March? Well apparently March 17th is the day that Saint Patrick died, which is why the celebration of his life and all of his accomplishments takes place on that day. St. Patrick’s Day was originally only celebrated in Ireland; the first state to observe this day was Boston. It was
More than just sippin’ on green beer.. originally a mystery as to how St. Patrick’s Day emerged in various countries, since St. Patrick was a patron of Ireland only. It was thought that as the citizens of Ireland moved to different countries and states, they took this holiday with them, which is how it was brought to cities all across the world. In Ireland the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day is rather traditional. Since St. Patrick was a priest, the Irish usually observes this day in Church. It is such a reli-
gious day for the people of Ireland that almost every single business and store is closed for the day, except of course, the local pubs. The celebration in other parts of the world is a lot different. In Ireland of course they use the 17th of March to attend Church, while across the world it is used as a reason to let FUTURÉALE
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loose and party. Many take it as a day to consume all the beer possible and dance the day away at an Irish pub. The traditions of drinking alcohol and wearing green clothing come from two separate historical legends. The tradition of wearing green is a slightly simpler story than the one of why drinking beer is accepted on this day. The green represents Ireland’s beautiful scenery; it’s large area of green grass and farmland. Mostly the wearing of green clothing comes from the Catholics of Ireland, green is the colour in which describes them. A lot of the traditions of St. Patrick’s Day are American based, including this one.
colour green, so to prevent getting pinched everyone began wearing green, which is how the tradition began. If I might add, I find how that tradition came about to be unique. If you don’t want to get pinched, just wear green, it’s as simple as that! For whatever reason imbibing extensive amounts of alcohol on St. Patrick’s Day has become an American born habit. Although this shouldn’t be what defines St. Patrick’s Day, there is a reason as to why alcohol is involved in this holiday. Again the reason behind this custom comes from another past legend in which St. Patrick himself was left with a small amount of Whisky in his glass, poured by his innkeeper. In order to teach his innkeeper about the importance of benevolence, he disclosed information about a devil residing in his cellar who fed completely off the innkeeper’s deceit. St. Patrick continued to say that the only way the devil could be banished was if the innkeeper reverted his ungenerous ways. From then on the innkeeper always overfilled glasses and St. Patrick announced that everyone should have a drop of Whisky on the day. All of the green beer we see today is purely materialized, and is nothing remotely close to what takes place in Ireland. A lot of holidays have been taken out of their original context and switched around into something completely unrecognizable; St. Patrick’s Day is no different. Nevertheless I’ll admit that drowning in green clothing and green beer is much more fun than thinking about all the accomplishments St. Patrick had attained. Sometimes to appreciate holidays to the fullest, they need a drop of embellishment.
You may be surprised to hear that not only do downtown city streets hold staggering Irish wannabe’s on March 17th; they also are home to somewhat sober extraordinary parades. These parades happen all over the world from Canada to Australia, displaying beautiful floats enriched with Ireland spirit. Attending the parade in your town is a great way to spend time with your family, let loose and enjoy a piece of Ireland in your own backyard. It might seem strange but some cities even go as far as dying their rivers and streams green on behalf of St. Paddy’s Day. I don’t know about you but I think it would be gratifying to swim in a green river, anyone with me? When March rolls around the first thing that appears in everyone’s mind is St. Patrick’s Day, and the image submerging from that is a sea of green, green beer and green clothing. Yes, I will agree that celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in that manor is probably the most fun you will have in the month of March. By all means I am not telling you to stop flooding your bloodstream with beer, but just take one miniscule moment between practicing your Irish accent and painting your face green, just to think about the man who allowed for this day to be possible. The man who is still somewhat a mystery, but certainly did the world some good, good enough for a day to be named after him. All I ask is for you to take a look up in the sky, and I mean really look, give the ol’ man a wink, and cheers in his honor. --rr
One American-based legend on wearing green that is only used in America is actually rather amusing. In the late 1700’s it was thought that if you wore green the leprechauns were unable to see you, therefore you were exempt from their pinching. The leprechauns would generally pinch anyone who wasn’t wearing the FUTURÉALE
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10 OF THE BEST PLACES TO CELEBRATE ST. PATRICK’S DAY IN TORONTO.
1. McCarthy’s Irish. Located in Downtown Toronto. The place is relatively small, only holds around 20 people or so. But if you’re into some good grub and a quiet place to celebrate definitely check it out. 2. The Ceili Cottage. Queen Streets finest Irish Pub. There is a $10 admission at the door with all proceeds going to charity. Get ready for a good ol’ Irish celebration here. 3. P.J. O’Brien’s is a welcoming Irish pub serving up beer and more beer. Keeping cozy is simple, just head upstairs to their fireplace lounge. 4. The Irish Embassy is close to Toronto nightlife. Their large selection of beer is sure to keep the party going. 5. Foggy Dew is the perfect place to celebrate Irish style. Along with the traditional Irish food and beer, the atmosphere screams Ireland. 6. Fynn’s of Temple is one of the more upper-class Irish lounges. With bottle service and mouthwatering food, it is sure to please. 7. James Joyce Irish Pub is one of the more rowdier of pubs. Attracting a large amount of parties with their pool table and various other games. 8. Grace O’Malley’s is the newest edition to the community of Irish Pubs. With their large dance floor, there is no reason not to bust out a few moves. 9. Fionn MacCool’s was actually build in Ireland and shipped back to Toronto. Ireland is definitely not far away from this popular dinner spot. 10. St. Patrick’s Day Parade, March 13th, 2011. If you’re interested in gathering the family for a fun day the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade would most definitely entertain you. The Toronto St. Patrick’s Day Parade begins at noon, starting from Bloor and St. George. 20
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By Jess Silver
The Voice of Whom? The evolution of narrative voice in a book AS WITH EVERYTHING IN LIFE narrative voice is consistently changing based on the author’s intent and type of story told. The voice of narrator is like a propeller to a helicopter. If it is faulty we have difficulty trusting that we will arrive safely on solid ground. The same goes for narrative voice, readers often will not trust an intrusive first- person narrator whose voice can drip in irony and is over-exaggerating. The way that a reader responds to a book evolves because of change in social conditions. Prior to the 18th century, writers who flourished were known to have a didactic impulse expressed in their works. Literature was written for the purpose of instruction, religious or for one’s overall livelihood. An example of this is An Essay on The Art of Ingeniously Tormenting. Written as a parody of the conduct book, author Jane Collier writes for the young lady, teaching her how to become the ‘tormentor’ meaning that she must challenge her male superior in order to gain power and agency in a patriarchal society. The text not only instructs young ladies but parents in the chapter entitled For Parents telling them that although the reigns of parenthood are theirs to restrain their children with; they must learn to let go in order for the child to learn from personal experience and their own wrong doings. A modern day example of a type of book that has the same didactic impulse with an intrusive narrator is the Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff self help series where the narrator is guiding his reader to understanding what the important life values are. There are numerous examples of books that are known to still have an impulse FUTURÉALE
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to both instruct and delight, however the manner in which it is delivered differs from prior examples. Nowadays, authors are attuned to the notion of entertaining their readers so the voice of the narrator in many cases is less intrusive and pushy as many may say. A contemporary author leaves it to the reader to understand and appreciate what they will from a book. This is part of understanding the reader-response theory. Reader-response criticism is defined as “A school of literary theory that focuses on the reader or the “audience” and his or her experience with literature”. (Directhit.com). A writer’s greatest joy is receiving feedback from a reader no matter what it may be. If the 21st century wrote what Samuel Pepys called
“penny merriments” or chapbooks that had preachy narrators, no one would be tweeting about a book or waiting for the latest Tim Burton hit to follow a literary classic as in Lewis Carroll’s case. A narrator to a book is like oil to a frying pan. If the narrator’s voice is lacking veracity or on the other hand is too pushy and leaves no room for creative and personal thought flow, the pages won’t be turning. The Time Traveler’s Wife (2003) by Audrey Niffenegger is a good example of a modern novel where the narrator’s voice shifts throughout the text to elicit different points of view and helps the reader hear the story as it moves through time from Claire Nealon or Henry Detamble’s point of view. The reader delves into the minds of the characters and understands their troubles by means of these narrative voice shifts. Told in first person omniscient narration the reader of this book feels as though he or she is traveling 21
through time along with the characters and their tumultuously chilling experiences. It is a novel that makes the reader a sojourner of the story in similar ways to Robert Bly’s Iron John: A book About Men. In Iron John however, the narrator is questioning society on the condition of man and whether or not it is healthy for our modern society to have changed the roles of the man who was prior to the 20th century, the sole bread winner and provider for a family. It is a novel that throws into question the ways that humans perceive injurious experiences and it demands that the reader align himself or herself with the protagonist unlike Claire or Henry in Niffenegger’s novel. Whether you are reading a book for a particular purpose or for pure pleasure, the next time you find yourself engaged in the activity that is, holding the book or e-reader in hand think about how the voice of a narrator makes an entrance the next time you are about to flip a page. How does it change the words you registering? Is the voice of a narrator necessary to our contemporary world or are we all about creating and asserting our own? --rr 22
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Brain Food THE UNDEAD BUCKET LIST: Zombie movies you have to see before becoming one!
It’s easy to get lost in the sea of low and high budget zombie movies available on the mass market. It’s no secret that the vast majority of zombie films fail to meet the cut from the eyes of long-time fans. Then how can one navigate past the perils of sub-par zombie media? You could start by reading the rest of this article! What you see here is a list of the best zombie films you’ve probably never heard of. While not a comprehensive list of the best of the zombie genre, the following films are a few personal favorites.
math of a global zombie war brought on by mysterious space radiation. Although the human race ultimately prevailed, the radiation is still present and turns those who die into members of the undead. In order to maintain some semblance of normalcy, a governing corporation, Zomcom financed the building of fence enclosed communities
Fido (2008) and zombie-controlling collars. The Zomcom collars, which suppress the undead urge for human flesh, are utilized by the living to employ the undead as servants and pets. The film revolves around a young boy named Timmy, whose mother purchases a zombie despite her husband’s phobia of the living dead. Timmy soon befriends his family’s new pet, which he names Fido. Hilarity and trouble ensues. A Canadian zombie comedy, Fido is a fresh and original spin on the zombie genre. In a world where the majority of zombie movies revolve around bioterror, horror, and gratuitous violence, Fido is a must-see for anyone trying to differentiate their knowledge of zombie culture. Set in a 1950’styled alternate history, Fido is set in the afterFUTURÉALE
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Braindead (1992) Director Peter Jackson became a household name with the release of the critically acclaimed Lord of the Rings film trilogy. Prior to his involvement in the epic fantasy world of Middle Earth, Jackson was relatively well-known within the horror community for his focus on gore and graphic violence,
particularly for his work in the splatter film genre. Braindead (aka Dead Alive in North America) is probably one of the most notable films of his early career. To this day, it is still the goriest film I have ever seen. Using a unique blend of dark comedy, gratuitous violence, and possibly the most fake blood ever used in an independent movie, Jackson depicted a would be hero who, rather than keeping the undead away from his home, attempted to contain them within the confines of his mansion in an attempt to maintain a façade of normality. A must see, this film is for die-hard Peter Jackson fans, and fans of the zombie genre who really wonder what it would look like if someone attempted to combat the walking dead single handily with a lawn mower.
Versus (2000) I’ve always been fascinated by Japanese pop culture. I love anime and Japanese film. This being said, Versus is easily one of the most visually engaging and stylish zombie movies I have ever seen. The story follows prisoner KSC2-303, a mysterious man who after escaping police custody, meets a group of mobsters in what is 23
Dance of the Dead (2008) We all remember high school prom. The nerve-racking experience of asking out a date, picking out an outfit, and trying to figure out what the heck a corsage and boutonnière was. Prom is the culmination of our high school careers, a chance to show off who you’ve become. Now throw the walking dead into this concoction of teenaged hormones and you’ve got yourself a party. Dance of the Dead does just that.
ten and masterfully executed addition to the zombie genre is one most of you reading this have never heard of. This is one of those movies you absolutely need for your zombie DVD collection. It’s just that good.
referred to as “The Forest of Resurrection”. A fight between the two parties ensues when the prisoner escapes with a girl who the mobsters have kidnapped for unknown reasons. Just when things couldn’t get any worse, all of the men that the mobsters have ever killed and dumped in the forest reanimate and seek revenge!
While not incredibly ground breaking in terms of its plot, Versus makes up for this with extremely well choreographed hyperkinetic action sequences. Once you’ve seen this movie, there’s no denying that this stylish blend of gun-fu, martial arts, gangsters, and zombies deserves to be amongst the best of the genre. 24
Hopefully this has given you a brief and varied glance into the zombie genre and in the event of a zombie apocalypse, you will have wanted to watch these films!
King of the Zombies The premise is simple; take a handful of high school clichés, the jock, the nerds, the cheerleaders, the outcasts, and your average Joes, and toss them into the middle of a zombieinterrupted prom. Sound simple and boring? Trust me it isn’t. What could have been one-dimensional characters proved to be rather endearing thanks to both the talented and relatively unknown cast along with a fantastic script. This independent zombie comedy isn’t your run of the mill teen horror flick. This intelligently writ-
For more zombie-tastic content why not check out www.kingofthezombies.com ?! --rr FUTURÉALE
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Get Smarter by Eating Smarter WITH EXAMS JUST AROUND THE CORNER for University and Col-
lege students why not find out ways that are going to help you get your grades up? Eat well and study easier! By eating the right kinds of foods you can actually get smarter. There are certain foods that in fact feed your brain. These foods can improve memory and allow you to pay attention better. Also, these foods can slow down your brain’s natural aging process, which is obviously fabulous for your future! These foods will make you more aware, because it helps out your ability to concentrate. Get more focused on your studies by focusing more on your diet! Here are some smart food choices:
your brain is able to stay on task and concentrate for longer periods of time. Oatmeal can also help with digestion of starch by slowing down the digestion process. Blood sugar is normalized, cell growth is promoted and metabolism is sped up because of the iron, magnesium, and zinc in oatmeal. Try eating the plain natural oatmeal, not the pre-packaged sugar filled oatmeal, it takes a bit longer to cook but in the end the nutritional advantages are worth it! If you want to maximize your flavour of your oatmeal just add some low fat milk before cooking the oat meal, or even add some blueberries or banana slices!
Spinach: Spinach only has 40 calories per cup! Spinach contains nutrients that promote cell growth, produce blood cells, and betters your memory. Spinach is packed with tons of amazing nutrients! One cup of spinach already has your daily folate, manganese and vitamins A and K covered. Your brain works more effectively because of these nutrients. Because there are negative results of oxygen getting to your brain, these nutrients actually prevent these effects as well as it can slow down your brain’s ageing process. Spinach contains tons of iron, which is more than healthy for you! Spinach can also help out your vision, because spinach contains lutein. Try replacing your ice berg lettuce with spinach the next time you make your salad or you can even put some spinach in your next omelette!
Oatmeal: Oatmeal has lot of insoluble fibre! Oatmeal contains an energy which is constant so that FUTURÉALE
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The biggest health benefit to eating fish is that in contains omega-3 fatty acids. Fish helps your mental function, allows you to concentrate better, and enhances your memory. That sounds like a triple threat to me! Fish can also help out your learning and memorizing ability, because it strengthens your brain’s synapses. Be sure to check out the mercury levels when choosing fish, try to stick with fish such as wild salmon, albacore tuna, and mackerel because they are the least environmentally polluted, and they all contain the phenomenal omega-3 fatty acids!
By Lindsay Romeo Walnuts: It is quite ironic that Walnuts look very much like the human brain! Eat some of these delicious nuts once a day and your mental and motor functions are sure not to decline! Walnuts can even make your cells work better, and strengthen your brain. Walnuts are full of wonderful proteins and the amazing omega-3 fatty acids, which can in fact decline depression and mood swings, because they balance out your tippy neurotransmitters. Grab some chopped walnuts and throw them on your salad, or even zip them up in plastic bag for a healthy snack to go!
Berries: The growth of brain cells and advanced memory is shown through eating berries, especially strawberries and blueberries, because they contain flavonoids. A way you can tell which berries have the most nutrition is through the colour, the darkest and richest coloured berries are the best! Only eat the real berries! Berrie flavoured foods will not give you the great nutritional value that berries offer. Berries can avoid you having dementia, and allow your brain to stay strong, because of the antioxidants, vitamin C, and anti-inflammatory properties. Enjoy your berries with cereal, yogurt, salads, and try making a delicious mixed drink of berries with a blender! --mn and rr
The Independent Spirit Awards THE INDEPENDENT SPIRIT AWARDS recognize American movies
that are made outside the studio system and have production budgets of less than twenty million dollars. If the Oscars are “American Idol”, then the Spirit Awards are “The Discovery Channel” of movie awards shows. While most movie lovers know the films nominated for Academy Awards, even the most die hard Indie fan will find a few new names in the list of Spirit Awards nominees. This year the 26th annual Spirit Awards were held on February 26th, a day before the Academy Awards. As I write this, almost a month before the awards were handed out, I can already tell you what the biggest surprise of the night was, and it doesn’t require a time machine or a crystal ball. Of the five films nominated for an Independent Best Picture Award, only “Greenburg” was not also nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. Compare that to last year when only “Precious” earned nominations for both awards. And just a year earlier there was no crossover whatsoever. If you’ve been reading my column you know I feel that Independent film has gone mainstream. Is that because we are living in a time of the auteur in America? Many of our best directors, people like Darren Aronofsky, Nicole Holofcener, Lisa Cholodenko, and Danny Boyle, don’t want suits from the studio standing over their shoulders. Or could it simply be economic? With illegal downloading here to stay, more money is being thrown at the biggest movies in hopes that people will pay to see them on the big screen and then buy the video later, leaving very little extra money for executives 26
to gamble on mid-budget films. Instead you make a little film like “The Kids Are Alright” for $4 million dollars and see it earn $29 million, or even a tiny move like “Winter’s Bone” shot for less than $2 million and, thanks to the awards hype that began with Sundance 14 months ago and continued right up until last weekend’s Oscars make close to $8 million. And if these movies hadn’t made money, well, very little was risked. You can’t blame the Academy for giving a nomination to what I believe was the second best film of the year, “Winter’s Bone”, though they could have ignored it, most people did. And Darren Aronofsky’s “Black Swan” had to be on the list. Clearly the high end art house hit of the year and the performance Natalie Portman will now be remembered for, “Black Swan” is just the sort of film the Oscars want to be known for. If there was a movie that defined what the Independent Spirit Awards were all about it would be “Winter’s Bone”. It had a budget of less than $2 million and was shot on location in the hills of Missouri with a talented but virtually unknown cast working alongside
local non-professional extras. It was a real do it yourself film and no-one would expect them to snub “Winter’s Bone” just because it earned an Oscar nod. But should they have passed on Darren Aronofsky and his “Black Swan”? The production budget of $13 million clearly makes it eligible for a nomination. But with an international marketing campaign that was likely triple that and revenues of more than $120 million, is “Black Swan” a movie that needs a place on an awards show that was originally called the Findie? Hasn’t it already been found? The Spirit Awards helped make a name for a young Darren Aronofsky way back in 1999 when he won for Best First Screenplay. He received nominations for 2001’s “Requiem for a Dream”, and 2009’s “The Wrestler”. He has never received a best director Spirit Award. I wonder if perhaps setting him up to be the man of the hour at this year’s Spirit Awards is a throwback to what they did for Todd Haynes in 2003? Haynes was nominated in both the best director and Best First Feature categories in
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1992 for “Poison”. He did not win. He lost in 96 and 99 and finally won for “Far From Heaven”. One of the big Oscar movies that year, it won in all five Spirit Award categories it was nominated for; Best Feature, Best Director, Best Cinematography, Best Female Lead, and Best Supporting Male. Coincidentally, “Black Swan” is nominated in four of the same five categories, with no Best Supporting Male nomination. The Spirit awards may have findie (‘d) Darren Aronofsky, but they had not yet crowned him. If I am right, that is what they did February 27th.
rector, Bradley Rust-Gray, has a great track record already with an award winning short from 2000, and a well received feature in 2003’s “Salt”. Plus, his next film looks poised for a commercial breakthrough. “Jack and Diane” is a provocative sounding story of two girls hooking up one night in New York City. It stars two young women who have shined in lesser roles already; Juno Temple (best known as Lola Quincey, the girl who is assaulted and starts all the trouble in “Atonement”) as Dianne, and Riley Keough (Marie Currie in “The Runaways”) as Jack. “Oh yeah, that’s the new movie from the guy
But who are this year’s big finds? For me, and for many of us who love Indie movies, that is what the Spirit Awards are all about, finding something special. When “Winter’s Bone” came out this year I was through the roof because I had discovered Debra Granik’s first feature, “Down to the Bone” thanks to the Spirit Award nominations it received in 2005. From this years awards list I am going to recommend you search for a little movie called “The Exploding Girl”. It’s nominated for the John Cassavetes award this year that honours exceptional movies made for less than half a million dollars. While there are a few very interesting nominations, this had a trailer that knocked my socks off. The di-
who Directed “The Exploding Girl”. I hear it’s quite good. Lena Dunham is very young, just turned 24, and already has a film nominated for Best First Feature. She wrote, directed, and starred in “Tiny Furniture”, a quirky little coming of age movie directed at the twenty-something crowd. She has 12 acting credits and 6 writing credits since 2006, this is a young woman with drive and energy, and while it might take her a little longer to achieve mainstream success, she is clearly a person to keep in the back of your mind. The story lines of the night should be about Darren Aronofsky and Debra Granik. “Black Swan” will likely take best picture and
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best director, but I am very excited to see if Portman, who I’m sure has now received her Oscar, will have a Spirit Award to go along with it. The smart money says yes. It would absolutely make my awards season if instead Jennifer Lawrence, the star of “Winter’s Bone” took home the best actress award. For all the hype that has gone Natalie’s way (well deserved I might add) far and away the best performance by an actress in a motion picture this year was thrown down by Jennifer Lawrence, the third and final name I am going to whisper in your ear. You might already know her as Lauren Pearson in “The Bill Engvall Show”, but the first time I saw her was as Ree Dolly in “Winter’s Bone”. She was a tough, quiet, hard little thing living in the back woods, dirty and completely unglam. After the screening she bounced in wearing a tiny little dress and heals and answered every question like a character from “Gossip Girls”. But that was an act as well, this is a girl who grew up on a farm in Kentucky, and dropped home on her way to the set to pick up her mucking out the barn boots for the shoot. Very soon we will see her in the Jodie Foster directed “The Beaver” which stars Mel Gibson as a man with a hand puppet and a few serious problems. She gets a starring role in the remake of “The House at the End of the Street”. If you miss her in both of those, you won’t be allowed to miss her as Mystique in the X-men reboot, “X-Men: First Class”. I hope you enjoyed awards season, it really was a fun year, so many deserving films. Next month we’ll talk about how you can take some early first steps towards being your own Indie darling. --rr
By: Craig Wilkins 27
Celebrity Designers good, the bad, and the ugly The
By: Chris Allaire IN TODAY’S CELEBRITY CULTURE, make them look good yet they deem them- The key to Stefani’s success was accessible
it seems as though every actor, musician, singer, model, reality star or socialite have one thing in common – a clothing line. It is not uncommon for celebrities to explore other options than the ones that made them famous. Eva Longoria, actress on ABC’s Desperate Housewives, has opened a restaurant. Lauren Conrad, reality star, began writing books. Celebrities really aspire to be a jack-of-all-trades, and more often than not, this leads to their very own clothing collection. At first, the transition from celebrity into clothing designer seems a natural fit. The fashion and entertainment industry often go hand in hand, and celebrities are known for their particular style and taste just as much as for their work. They are marketable mannequins, after all. But for some celebs, a clothing line is a realm better left unexplored. A vast knowledge of the business, from designing to marketing a line, is needed to have a successful collection and many celebrities do not have those skills. Often, celebrities have stylists to 28
selves ready to design a line. That’s like asking someone eating a sandwich to create cookbook - just because you’re participating in the act doesn’t make you an expert! Here’s a collection of the good, the bad, and the ugly in celebrity clothing lines.
Successful Clothing Lines L.A.M.B by Gwen Stefani
fashion – a certain style for everyone, mildly priced for a celebrity line (although you get what you pay for with this line – the clothes are very well made), and uniqueness that drives a desire to purchase. Stefani’s latest Spring 2011 collection showed a mix of African and tribal clothing, with a sporty twist. Eva Longoria, Nicky Hilton, and Gwen Stefani herself have all been seen wearing the line.
Gwen Stefani is known for her eclectic fashion sense just as much as for her music, which is why it was no surprise the No Doubt singer launched her first clothing line in 2005. Although Gwen has specific and unique taste, her debut line shown in New York came to rave reviews from fans and critics alike. FUTURÉALE
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Winter Kate by Nicole Richie
Twenty8Twelve by Sienna Miller
The Fizzling Clothing Lines
Sienna Miller and sister Savannah created this line back in 2007, and have only been going up in the fashion world ever since. Their clothes have been featured in magazine such as Nylon and In Style, due to their fashion forward appeal.
6126 by Lindsay Lohan
When you hear the term “boho-chic”, Nicole Richie is usually the first person to come to mind. The reality star is known more for her boho hippie style and trendsetting outfits than anything else; therefore it was only natural that she would begin a clothing line in 2010. A hit among fans, celebrities and fashionistas alike, the line is continuing on this season with more prints and flowing silhouettes. The line is an extension of her accessories line House of Harlow 1960, which features jewelry and shoes. The Row by Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen
Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen have always been style icons throughout their career. Always seen front row at all the fashion shows, wearing the latest trends, or designing their own lines, the duo is definitely a fashion powerhouse.
Their latest spring collection was inspired by road trips; a collection of denim skirts, bright dresses, fringe, and summer prints. “There’s something for the working girl, the casual girl, the festival girl, the London girl,” said Sienna backstage. William Rast by Justin Timberlake Justin Timberlake and partner Trace Ayala’s line originally began as a denim line in 2005, then grew into a full-on clothing line and brand. With a Target collaboration under their belt, it’s clear that this clothing line is strongly in demand. The line rightfully embodies Timberlake’s casual and cool style, but is successful due to its mass appeal and great construction. I secretly lust for a pair of their jeans!
Beginning as a leggings line, Lindsay Lohan evolved her 6126 line into a full apparel brand – from bags, to shoes, and outerwear. Unfortunately, the line hasn’t been selling well and the online shop shows almost every item at discounted prices.
I think the problem with Lohan’s line is its small market – unless you are a size zero and under fifteen, most of the clothes will look ridiculous on you. Even some of Lohan’s more mature designs, like a flight jacket (which is almost a blatant rip-off of Balmain), end up looking like costumes instead of actual wearable pieces. Jessica Simpson by Jessica Simpson Jessica Simpson launched her clothing line back in 2007, and ever since then has turned into a global brand- including swimwear, bags, shoes, apparel, and the works. The line has actually done well sales-wise – in fact, according to Women’s Wear Daily, her fashion label brought in $750 million in 2010 alone.
The Row, only one of their lines among Elizabeth and James and Olsenboye, is an upscale line with a strong focus on tailoring, materials, and versatility. The clothing line has been widely accepted within the fashion industry, and has many celeb followers flocking for the designs. FUTURÉALE
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The reason why I put Simpson in the ‘fizzling’ category, though, is not due to her numbers, but due to the clothes themselves. Sure, they may be successful in stores like Macy’s and mass-audience stores, but I find her collection lacks originality. If you have the star status and connections to create a line, at least try to make it creative or innovative! House of Dereon by Beyonce Beyonce began the line in 2005 with her stylist mother, Tina, and the clothing line is supposed to embody Beyonce’s alter ego Sasha Fierce (her on stage persona). Unfortunately, although I respect Beyonce’s risk-taking in fashion, I think the line is a little much and, at some times, tacky and unwearable. I mean that green head scarf?
and develops a new stage in her career. The day Lavigne designs a simple black dress or great classy jacket is the day she will end up on my successful celeb-line list. Be@One by Heather Mills Out of what seems like a dark abyss of ideas, Heather Mills decided she is qualified enough to design an eco-friendly clothing line.
For the past couple of years, celebrity clothing lines have become increasingly popular – expanding from collaborations, to full clothing lines, to global brands. The mix between celebrities and couture can sometimes be a match made in heaven, while other times it can be a full-blown disaster. Like F5 tornado disaster (I’m talking to you, Heather Mills.) Although these celebrity lines seem to only be on the rise, with celebs like Rachel Zoe, Adam Levine, and Christina Aguilera planning on joining the design force, the question will always remain whether or not it’s a good fit. From Victoria Beckham’s $13,000 bag selling out on Net-a-porter.com, and Gwen Stefani’s runway shows being jammed with everyonewho’s-anyone in fashion, I think if done right – celeb lines are an idea most definitely tailored to perfection. --rr and jr
There are no words.
The Just Plain Awful Clothing Lines
Filthy Couture by Jwoww
Abbey Dawn by Avril Lavigne
After the 2010 craze of Jersey Shore, it was only natural Jwoww would pursue a clothing line. With an Ed Hardy-wearing, fist pumping cast, a clothing line isn’t the first thing that came to my mind when I thought of possible branch offs – but Hollywood never ceases to surprise me.
Avril Lavigne teamed up with Kohl’s in 2008 to create a line based on her own skater-punk style. As expected, the line features everything from animal prints, bright colours, tutus, and ripped denim. Much like Lohan’s line, if you’re older than sixteen, these clothes will simply look ridiculous on you. I understand that Lavigne is designing for her key demographic—tweens and teens alike – but I think it’s time she matures a little 30
Basically, the clothing line is filled with lots of lace, frills, and skin-bearing silhouettes. Cutting edge fashion? No. Suitable to her personality? Definitely. FUTURÉALE
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YouTube WHETHER YOU’RE JUSTIN BIEBER belting out love songs or video
blogging like Kevin Wu of Kevjumba, broadcasting yourself is no longer hard to achieve. In fact, it’s so simple that millions of people are following their lead and creating Youtube accounts, posting videos in hopes of garnering some attention. But whether or not the videos get views and comments is a whole different story. Jordan Sparks, who is a first-year new media student at Ryerson University, thinks the reason why people decide to post on YouTube is to feel that they have a place in the world. I think it’s because they want to feel like they matter,” he says. “The real world is kind of cruel and nobody knows who we are. ” is While he doesn’t think that online fame a particularly bad thing, he thinks there are repercussions to trying too hard for popularity. “You do something like that because you love it and are very passionate about it. I’ve seen many people do what they do for the sole reason of becoming famous. Which they almost are never though, and have to resort to begging people who aren’t interested or have never heard of them into subscribing to them, even though they haven’t done anything worth paying attention to.” Nicole Cagiuat, a marketing student at the Schulich School of Business at York University, thinks people use on YouTube for popularity, but says she hasn’t noticed an increased amount of people looking for fame. “Proportionally, I would say that there’s the same amount of people who are trying to get famous as there were say, 20 years ago. There’s the attraction of the popularity, the feelings of importance and perhaps in some cases, money.” FUTURÉALE
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By: Samantha Lui
Although Cagiuat doesn’t think the internet particularly implies to earning money, she feels that posting on Youtube can lead to money-making opportunities for those who don’t have there sources to get their work showcased. “I would say the current amount of video posters out there is more so due to the convenience and availability of the medium. It’s free. It has a wide audience.” Shantel Joyce Mempin, the founder of ilikegrass productions, started posting on her brother’s Youtube account (ilikegrass1) out of the encouragement of her friends who have seen her videos. Generating a lot of views from the online community, Mempin, 20, decided to make a production company out of the account with 10 friends. Since then, opportunities have been knocking at her door. “I have been given opportunities since starting Youtube such as selling my shirts online or editing videos for events.” Others like aspiring musician Prudence Leung started posting videos of her singing to get honest opinions from people she didn’t know and to help others relate to her music. Although she admits she isn’t as active on Youtube as other social networking sites like MySpace and Facebook, Leung, 18, says she has encountered opportunities such as managers and record labels that hold an interest in her.
From covering songs from other bands to playing some of her own originals, she has enjoyed responses from her audience, despite some negative opinions. “So far, majority of the feedback I get is amazing and it pushes me to continue. Every few months, I may get a negative comment, but I don’t really care for those too much. The attention is always great, and I’m just real thankful for all the support and love I’ve been given since day one.” Even though Cagiuat thinks that broadcasting oneself is generally a good idea for self-promotion, she has noticed many video bloggers acting a bit too desperate for attention. “There are some vloggers, more so the ones with low view counts and poor quality in general, who talk about nothing. It appears to be a sort of cry for attention. They’re looking for a self-esteem boost and if they seem desperate, they’re not going to get it. They will get sympathy, people are
is that it’s modeled after a highly competitive market. There’s a lot of information that is duplicated and if you’re not the best you tend to get passed over. This drives people to constantly do better - do something bigger and better and yes, this can become desperate. ” What she suggests to aspiring YouTubers instead, is to offer something new and fresh. “When you can offer the world something they haven’t seen before, it gets popular because people are more likely to share it with others,” she says. “Be different and be creative. Also, many great videos suffer from poor sound and image quality. By all means practice on cheap equipment before investing in really good stuff so you know can dedicate the time and energy.” But as for Mempin, posting on Youtube has led to more than just online attention. Since creating her production company, Mempin has been able to follow her own aspirations to work in the film industry, and she encourages others to show their stuff online. “I think that Youtube is a brilliant stepping stone to someone’s passion,” she says. “Youtube also gave me the opportunity to follow my own passion, which was to study film production. Without Youtube, I would have never decided to go to school for film.” --rr and mn
nice enough to give that, but they will not earn fame.” But according to Cagiuat, video bloggers aren’t the only ones who strive to be noticed. People who post prank and stunt-based videos, she says, are often trying to go above and beyond, trying to achieve more than other YouTubers. It generally ends up being more dangerous for them with little increase in viewer interest,” Cagiuat explains. “The thing with the internet FUTURÉALE
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Te n o f t h e B e s t B o ar d G am e s fo r A d u lt s
USUALLY WHEN MOST THINK OF A NIGHT PLAYING BOARD GAMES, we picture a
group of children or a happy family sitting around a table laughing and bonding over some good clean fun. But these are not the only groups that enjoy game nights. Personally, when I think of board games I am flooded with memories of all of the great nights I have spent with friends playing games that some may view as childish. Greg Ferguson, Senior Brand Manager of games and puzzles for Hasbro says: “Games are growing in popularity for kids, families and adults. Hasbro Canada markets to a broad audience, not only with specific game titles that are targeted to kids, families and adults, but with overarching initiatives that target a portfolio of our new and classic games. Family Game Night is a global initiative that is
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aimed at moms and dads, but encourages family game play. For adult games, we have a Game Night initiative that encourages taking a get together from good to great with titles including Taboo, Pictionary, Cranium and more.” Taboo, Pictionary and Cranium are only a few examples of the variety of games that are perfect for adults. Some other fun games for adults include Balderdash, Things: Humor In a Box, Funglish, Trivial Pursuit, Scattergories, Monopoly, and Clue. Clearly, some of these games are better known than others, but even the classics have been updated and some even given a new twist. Monopoly, Clue, Trivial Pursuit, and Pictionary require no explanation. These four may seem dated and unoriginal to some, but this is simply not the case.
These classic games have been remade and/or updated in a variety of themes to appeal to a wide variety of playing audiences. For example, Monopoly has been made into a Canadian version, making use of Canadian landmarks and famous streets to make the game feel personal to an entire nation, instead of the classic American version. Trivial Pursuit has a variety of specialty options such as the “Bet You Know It” edition, which not only makes use of your trivia knowledge but also relies on your knowledge of your fellow players. Clue has also begun to offer a variety of editions to appeal to a variety of audiences, such as the Seinfeld Edition and the Harry Potter edition. Pictionary doesn’t offer many niche editions, but it has been updated to include new drawing options.
The other six games mentioned may not be that well known to everyone, but they are definitely growing in popularity. Many of these games have been recently featured on “Ellen” in a segment called “Hasbro Family Game Night”. In this segment audience members are invited to come on stage and play life size versions of many of these games, often causing the rest of the audience and even Ellen herself to break out in hysterical laughter. These games are best described by their manufactures: For Taboo, “give suggestive sentences, funny phrases or even one-word hints as clues. But don’t use any of the words on the card that would be Taboo! Each time your team shouts out the secret word, you get a point. It’s unspeakably fun - take our word for it!” Interested in playing Things? “You won’t believe the hilarious, creative, outrageous and unforgettable things your friends will say when playing The Game of Things… by Hasbro. To play this provocative party game, the reader draws a topic card and reads it aloud. For example: ‘things a chimp thinks about when he sees you at the zoo.’ Then the other players write down their responses and you try to figure out who said what. Remember, you can write anything that comes to mind, so be as fun as you want!” “Scattergories! The classic fast-thinking categories game. Players try to match categories using words that start with the same letter.” Wondering how to play Balderdash? “In this classic game, players earn points for guessing the correct answer, as well as bluffing others into thinking your made-up answer was correct.” Funglish is one of the newest games on this list. “There’s no time to lose so grab some clues! Can you get the other players to guess the word kangaroo? You can’t talk or act but you can find, grab and play just the right clues from 120 descriptive tiles 34
as everyone shouts out their guesses. You play living, wild, and tall. Is it a Redwood? A giraffe? A basketball player? Nope. Keep playing tiles like furry, brown and bouncy. Once another player yells out kangaroo, try a new word before time runs out! That’s the funny, noisy, unique, entertaining, magical, fast-moving fun of Funglish!” “Cranium is the outrageously fun awardwinning board game packed with somethingfor-everyone fun! Whether you’re an aspiring actor, artist, data hound, or wordsmith, Cranium gives everyone a chance to shine. Features 600 all-new cards for outrageous fun, and new 3-in-1 foldout game board lets you choose how long you play!” All of these games offer players something different. Whether it’s drawing, wordplay, trivial knowledge or straight strategy, these games have something for everyone. These games are so great in social settings, especially when there are strangers in the group because
they act as the perfect icebreaker. They get the conversation flowing and create ease in your social gathering. Based on personal knowledge and research I have provided what I think to be the top 10 games for adults, but these are only a few of the variety of games marketed to and enjoyed by adults. Hopefully these will give you some inspiration to break out an old favourite or try something new and let out your inner child. Stop by your local game store and create your own list of favourite board games. And next time you’re planning a dinner party or simply a night at home with a few friends, break out a board game from your list or mine and see how much fun you can really have. --rr and jr
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Are You Wagging Me? PETS ARE SPECIAL, there’s no denying this truth. Anyone who’s had the opportunity to get to know their dog or cat knows they are living with a unique being who is loaded with personality and yes, even a sense of humour. In the case of my dog, a Bouvier named Burek, the humour was often one sided – I know he
was jerking me around and laughing his ass off at me. He always knew when he had me, specifically when I couldn’t get at him. He’d run me like a Mario game. Of course, later on, we’d have our conversation about that, but I don’t think he ever minded. On one or more levels he seemed to have taken it into account and still decided that it was worth tying my tail in a knot. Now, before I go any further, let me say that we had a special bond and he really was my dog. All one hundred pounds. When I had to go on the road for weeks at a time, Lynn was surprised when Burek would drag out some of my clothing and paw at it, whining a little. We didn’t have kids and I called Burek my son. Lynn called him His Assholiness. Which suited him. That monicker was so right on because he showed off his incredible personality with such a great sense of joie de vivre. To be fair, we were a pair of personalities who enjoyed each other’s company immensely. I’m sure the irony was not lost on Lynn. FUTURÉALE
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Sometimes, we would box. I’d give him that look, and hunch over slightly, my fists coming up. He’d get his look – his eyes lit up, his ears twitched and he’d lay back a little in his stance, ready to duck and counter. Game on! I throw a punch. He ducks. He goes in to nip me. I biff him in the head. He bobs and weaves. He’s patient, he knows he’ll get me. I throw a boot into his huge chest. He’s fast. As my leg’s coming out, he wraps his paw around it and as I’m bringing my leg back in I’m dragging him back in with it, sinking his jaws into my thigh. I bonk him. He slips off and weaves with me, looking for his next in. I was never able to do it with a straight face. I couldn’t help laughing for the pure fun of it. And I never saw Burek so alive. We never hurt each other and when we stopped, he’d wag his little stub and push himself against me with bright eyes and it felt like we truly owned the moment. Good times. We had a kennel, where we raised Bouviers, boarded occasionally, offered grooming services and on three different occasions, took in German Shepherds till we could find new, happy homes for them. Those Shepherds surprised me because I found them all to be beautiful gentle beings. They really were good company. Lynn’s uncle Tommy left his dog with us for a week while he took his family on vacation. It was a mix between a beagle and a basset hound and Tommy called him a bagel. I forget the dog’s name and he was never any trouble except for one annoying habit. This little guy would wait till I was standing beside his run and he’d let out a yelp. He always did it when I was looking away and forgot he was there. I guess it’s because he had the hound in him but his yelp was like the baying of the hound of the Baskervilles, and as
By Marcus Pidek loud as a shotgun. I nearly had to check my pants after the first time he did that to me. As with all of us, if a little of a good thing is good, then more is better. And he would yelp and yelp while he’s looking around. I think he knew full well the awful level of sonic power that AAYOOOED out of his ten pound, six inches off the ground, frame. Well it got old, fast. So the next time he was feeling in fine voice, I grabbed the hose with the pistol nozzle and dowsed him. He shut up right away. Like magic. I loved it. He hated it. The power of the hose. It felt good. But I didn’t abuse it. And living beside the rest of the bouves, who were a pretty happy bunch, the bagel thrived and ate like a pig. People always worried about leaving their dogs with us lamenting about how they know it won’t eat and it’s not our fault, blah, blah. They’d bring the dog’s favorite toys and blanket. I’m sure all the visiting dogs gained weight with us. They slammed their faces into the food bowls as soon as we brought them over. I don’t think they even thought about their owners. Anyway, the sneaky bagel and I worked out a system which Lynn took part in. If he got carried
away with the vocals he got wet. He hated getting wet. I hung the hose on his gate. One day I was standing there, talking with Lynn. I forgot about him again and he let out his AAYOOO! I turned to look straight into his eyes. He was watching me. Then he saw my eyes look to the hose. And he started backing his ten pound ass into the far corner of his run, never taking his eyes off me. Since he knew what would happen next, he didn’t make another sound. I figured he got one off to test me, I made my point, looking at the hose and he backed off, happy with what he got away with. No dowsing, everybody happy. And it really was comical. To this day I can’t think of him without smiling. Whisper was a jet black cat with a pretty fluffy tail. He had so much heart and personality that I can’t begin to find the words to tell you how much I missed him after he left us. He was born in our neighbour’s barn and at six weeks, he fit inside my two hands
cupped together. I introduced him to our first two bouves that we owned, Kara and Kyla. Kara, the boss, at five weeks older, weighed sixty five pounds. Kyla was a good sized bitch, at eighty pounds. I held little Whisper, who sat quietly in my hands, out to Kara to introduce him to her. “See, Kara? This is Whisper.”. 36
Whisper’s little head looked out from the hole my thumbs formed. Kara looked back and forth three times from me to Whisper, getting more excited and – woof – her mouth was around my hands, grabbing for Whisper. “No!” I swung my hands back from her and, unbelievably, Whisper – his head wet with slobber, didn’t seem shocked. Then I held him out to Kyla. Same thing. “No!” Whisper and my hands were all slobbered and he put up with it with a calm I can only envy. Whisper grew up and we had a large litter of ten pups in the kitchen. Whisper was lying on top of one of the dog crates that the dogs slept in at night and he dropped down to visit the pups. At this point in time they were close to eight pounds each and they dove on Whisper in a furry whirlpool. And he put up with it. When he had enough of their grabbing and gnawing he popped back up onto the crate, sticky with slobber, his wet tufts of fur pointing in all directions. I knew then that he had a great affinity for the pups and indulged them as if they were his own. I was so proud of him. We had a bentwood rocker, which was my favorite chair for reading. It was Whisper’s favorite chair for snoozing. When I wanted the chair, I would slip my hands under his body, curled around like a furry donut, and move him to the couch. He knew me and often didn’t even open his eyes when I deposed him. We spent many hours in each other’s company in harmonious silence. But when he was awake, he was deadly. Lynn opened a lower cupboard under the counter while Whisper was beside her leg and we were all surprised to see a mouse looking at us from the cupboard. For an instant, the universe was frozen, with the mouse looking at the three of us while we looked at it. I think he was surprised, too. Then the cosmic clock ticked and Whisper moved in a blur from Lynn’s side to the mouse and it was over. I didn’t know he was such a great mouser. I then realized what he did with his time in the back field. And he
always came when we called his name. We had so many dogs that the vet came to us to give them all their shots. We never had to keep Whisper locked up for the vet. We set up a table outside for the vet to do the dogs and just called Whisper for his shot. We’d see his black tail cutting through the tall grass as he trotted straight to us. He made no fuss about the shot, I thanked him very much as I put him down and he wandered off like it was any other day. One night, when he was two, I put Whisper out the front door. We had a four lane highway maybe thirty feet from our door and it was very foggy. He didn’t come back for two days and I was worried. When I searched the high grass in the ditch by the road I found his body, already well decomposed. He must have wandered onto the road and didn’t hear the car in the fog. I lost a beloved friend. After we broke up, Lynn kept Burek, Kyla, Kara and one other dog and I moved to the Dominican Republic. I had a dream that I was with Burek but I was looking at him through the legs of a table and chairs. When I awoke, I knew the obstacles that let me see him but didn’t let me reach him meant he was dead, beyond my reach. I mentioned the dream to Mom and she spoke with Lynn about it. Lynn said that yes, Burek passed away. My son came to say goodbye to me. --rr
ARTS | CULTURE | LIVING
COLLEGE OR UNIVERSITY? That is the textbook debate. To decide whether to attend college or university is a very complicated one. In making our decision, we must factor in: the reputation of the school, emotional/ tuition costs, access complexities and barriers such as grades requirement, extra-curricular and proximity. With all that research and writeup, we’ve written up a thesis paper before even entering school. Over the last three decades, Canada has been seeing a trend with an increasing number in university enrollments, but colleges however, were seeing the opposite effect. Data from the 2000 Survey of Approaches to Educational Planning showed that the vast majority of parents believed that getting more education after high school, especially a university degree is very important. Education is important no doubt for one to excel and move up in the workforce, but through different trainings and programs; some courses might be more applied while others more academically based. We saw the 1990th as the era introducing university transfer programs at colleges. Plenty of colleges now, have begun to enrich themselves by offering these transfer programs that could now offer associate degrees and even bachelor degrees. Colleges usually offer applied and technical focused programs while universities, considered, more rooted in academia. But after much debate over the past quarter century about the impacts of technological change in skills, the consensus today is that skill requirements are increasing for most jobs , especially the increasingly intensive use of computers. Technology has become an essential part of our work setting or even habit. We use it in accounting, scheduling, and even as data storage. Universities have taken this new techFUTURÉALE
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nological change into account and have now begun to assimilate the use of computers into their own courses and programs. It takes about 1-2 years in college to finish a program with an approximate tuition of $2500/year to graduate with a certificate or diploma. After graduation one can either enter the work force immediately or continue onto an associates or bachelors degree. For those choosing to go to university it will take an average of 4 years to complete, costing about $6000/year graduating with a bachelors degree. After that, one can also choose to either enter the work force or continue onto a masters or any other formal training. The advantage college graduates have over university students here is that they are able to enter the workforce and establish their careers much earlier. University students must face competing not only with their own peers for jobs upon graduation but also against college graduates who’ve already obtained a few years of work experience. Consider also “emotional costs”- school does not only have the cost of tuition that needs worrying about, but also the emotional roller coaster that one is strapping themselves to. Do they have peers going to the same school? Can they picture themselves being on the same campus and setting day after day over the next few years? Can they see themselves being comfortable in the environment long term? Is family nearby for support? All these questions must be factored in for the transition of attending a post-secondary institution. Proximity is another issue that has become one of the main major factors in Canada for students enrolling in post secondary. Over the last few decades, enrollment in university from rural to suburban areas has rose due to the new implementation of a university in the area.
Moving and living costs will be significantly higher for students who must leave home to go to school, therefore to have a university built closer to home makes it much more accessible for the local community. Students from lower income families saw the largest increase in university participation following the creation of a local university. Then we have specific grade requirements that must be achieved before even submitting a formal application to any college or university. To enter college one must have at least graduated secondary school with a passing average. Colleges usually require 65% grade before submission. However for universities, most schools will not accept anything under 80%. Most colleges and universities will also require everyone to write and pass an English entrance exam before even given an admission. But then there are schools and even certain programs where all you need is an excellent portfolio or audition; this is where that extra talent, training, and your after school involvements and volunteering comes in. So what do you choose- college or university? It all depends on the career you want to get into. If your career involves more handson applied training, research your courses thoroughly and make sure there are studios course alongside liberal courses. If your career is computer-based, look for schools that are up to date with their computer programs with the appropriate instructors for those courses. It’s all about research, planning and comparing. To decide what college or university to attend is a very important one to make, and when doing so, one must do it wisely. --rr and mn
By: Dany Pen 37
Apartment Gardening THERE IS NOTHING QUITE like the taste of fresh herbs. Unfortunately fresh herbs from the grocery store only last a few days in the refrigerator. If you want that fresh taste without having to restock your herb selection each week, why not grow your own herb supply at home? Home grown herbs can last as long as you maintain your plants and will provide you with a brilliant crisp taste. But with Toronto having the second highest concentration of high-rise buildings in North America, most Torontonians see a concrete jungle rather than ample green space. However, there is a way of bringing the garden up into your high-rise, and you donâ€™t need a green thumb to have the perfect window garden. Herb gardens make a great addition to any apartment. Not only are they beautiful, they will add greenery to the maze of bricks you see out your window. They are practical as well, adding the most delectable flavours to any dish. Anyone can make their own potted herb garden. All you need is a window with sunlight, a pot, some soil, and your herbs. Using a pot you already have on hand or purchasing one from your local hardware store is the first step. You can use one long pot for all your herbs, or a separate pot for each species of herb. Either option is fine, but some stronger flavoured herbs (such as rosemary) may influence the taste of more tame herbs (parsley, for example). In either option, your pots will need good drainage, an overflow plate and must be at least 38
6 inches deep. Consider buying clay, ceramic or plastic. It really is your preference, just as long as the pot is sturdy. You can match your pot to the decor of the room your herbs will be growing in. Most garden centres and hardware stores have a variety of decorative pots that will fit into your decor and are functional as well. If you are new to gardening, consider buying pre-potted herbs from a garden centre (some grocery stores also carry potted herbs); these herbs have already started the growing process and will have stronger roots. Seeds are much more difficult to grow because they need more attention at the beginning. If seeds are your only option (this is especially true during winter months, as potted plants are harder to come by), you can definitely begin from seeds, but they will need to be looked after carefully. Herbs that will grow well indoors: Basitl, sage, dill, oregano, thyme, fennel, mint, lavender, parsley, chamomile, chives, and rosemary. Once you have your herbs you will need to plant them (or transfer them) into your new pots. Be sure to use good potting soil with compost or peat moss in it. Using regular dirt will not provide the nutrients or comfortable growing ground your herbs need. To help your herbs along you may also want to buy plant food. Using the pellets that will release food when watered is easiest when growing inside, but you can also use the water soluble powdered plant food. After you have potted and fed your herbs, you must place them in or near a window. The most impor-
tant thing for your garden is that it is exposed to sunlight. Often South or West facing windows provide the most sunlight. Along with sunlight your plants will need water. You want to water your garden regularly, while being sure not to over-water the plants. You never want to drown your plants by overwatering. As long as the soil is damp to the touch there should be enough water. About once a week should suffice. And there you have it! You now have a herb garden! Most herbs are pretty hard to kill so as long as you keep the soil damp and in sunlight you should be enjoying fresh herbs in your food shortly. If you want to go that extra mile here are some other tips for your window garden. If you live in an apartment that is especially dry you can mist the leaves of your herbs to keep them fresh and lively, but again it is very important not to overwater. To get the most out of your plants you can ensure more growth by regularly trimming your plants. The more you trim them, the more they will grow. Now that you have an established herb garden you can start cooking and enjoying the taste and health benefits of your home grown herbs! --rr FUTURĂ‰ALE
ARTS | CULTURE | LIVING
s e HorseRac
By Mark Kinash
The Hollywood Stock Exchange
I FIRST HEARD ABOUT the Hollywood Stock Exchange (HSX) from a friendly local thirty-something “too old to be working as a video rental clerk” slacker acquaintance of mine back in 2005. At first it seemed to be the perfect time waster for the both of us. Two people with no lives outside of the movies (which would make us on par with almost everyone in Hollywood, although considerably less attractive and wealthy). The concept was simple, bet fake money (you’re allotted two million upon your first sign in) on the North American box-office gross of upcoming films (based on the opening four weeks in wide release). Of course, there’s more than bragging rights for all you Hollywood psychics out there. Top scorers have the opportunity to win prizes available on the HSX website. But to get to that level, you first have to understand the rules of the game: So let’s say Justin Bieber’s new documentary “Never Say Never” is valued on HSX at $70 million, but you think it’s going to do better (You’ll never go broke underestimating some people’s taste). So you can buy as many shares as you afford. Next thing you know “Never Say Never” banks $30 million on its first weekend. Given that your average wide release makes approximately 25% percent of its final gross on its first weekend and approximately 90% in its first four weekends, the stock goes up considerably, and you’re able to make a pretend profit off a pretend musician (I kid Justin Bieber, but he won’t make me forFUTURÉALE
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get the Mini Pops). Now’s the time to sell that stock as films aimed at a younger audience tend to be “front-loaded” i.e. they generate greater than average revenue their first week and step-off considerably. By Friday, “Never Say Never” will take a hit as everyone forgets about Justin Bieber because they’re too busy chasing Alex Pettyfer, the star of next week’s Twilight-clone “I am Number Four”. Want to cash in on this next pubescent hormonal rush before it’s too late? Search for Alex Pettyfer and buy shares of his StarFund. StarFunds allow you to bet on the value of a Hollywood star or director’s career based on the performance of their next five films. Derivatives are another way to cash in using the over/under method: Will “I am Number Four” make over or under 20 million dollars it’s opening weekend? You get the picture. But let’s not be short sighted here. It’s much more risky (and potentially lucrative) to bet on films before they are even produced. Some listings are available to be bet on that are just circulating or rumoured about in Hollywood. Thus the value of the shares are low but can spike up once a big star or director is attached, like the upcoming Superman film which doubled in value after Zack Snyder (300, The Watchmen) signed on to direct. Even though I don’t bet anymore, I still like to linger on these pages just to see what’s upcoming, and what’s rumoured to be the next big thing. Breaking movie news and trailers are updated on movie listings daily. And if you think that the Academy Awards are a
little stiff and require a little more Vegas flair you can even bet on the nominations as well. After a while, box office betting can seem just as addictive as sports betting, as long as you remember to keep tabs on the box office gross (www.boxofficemojo.com is a good source for that). Of course, this may seem deceptively simple, and it did to me when I first started. Too soon I had squandered my shares on movie stocks that went nowhere, like a rumoured “Barbarella” remake starring Drew Barrymore (Whatever happened to her?) Or that long-anticipated “Son of Mad Max” movie which would feature then-rising star Heath Ledger (Well, we all know what happened to him). Unwisely, I thought I could also pad my portfolio considerably by betting on Nicole Kidman’s career (Yikes!). Then I got my brother hooked on the site a couple years later. I encouraged him to ignore my mistakes by betting on a sure thing like Jerry Seinfeld’s “Bee Movie”. He wisely ignored my advice and bet a majority of his shares on “Avatar” which was still in the production stages, when its story line still remained a mystery. It was hard to accept defeat to someone who rarely followed the biz at all, but I suppose that when betting on Tinseltown one thing becomes clear: “In the land of the blind, the one eyed man becomes king”. --rr
Interview with Howard Nemetz on the YTV Sitcom Mr. Young
I STEPPED ONTO THE SET OF Mr. Young, the new YTV series that had been filming in Vancouver since October, on the day before their live show. I walked by sets lined up in front a platform containing rows of seats for the audience to sit. The next day the seats would fill with kids and parents alike, but at that moment only the mothers of main cast filled the seats. I took a seat next to the three of them and watched the flat screens that showed what was being filmed. I turned my attention to the far end of the set where the director, one of the producers and a few writers monitored on a screen what all four cameras were filming. During lunch I walked into the writers’ room to find Howard Nemetz, co-executive producer/writer of Mr. Young. From there he kindly lead me to his office and we sat down. Howard Nemetz is second in command to Dan Signer, the creator and executive 40
writer/producer for Mr. Young. Signer is also one of the key writer/producers behind Disney’s The Suite Life of Zack and Cody. Howard told me that while Dan oversees everything that happens in the series, Howard is the man to make sure everything happens the way Dan Signer wants it while he’s away from set. “So my responsibility is; everyone answers to me,” he says. “And I answer to him.” Q. How did you get involved with the Mr. Young project? A: The guy who created the show, Dan Signer, is someone with whom I worked on The Suite Life of Zack and Cody. When this came up he wanted to hire a Canadian he knew, and someone with whom he can work with and someone hopefully he respected. So he came to me, and the production company came to me.
Q. Is it partly because you are Canadian that they wanted you to work on this show? The show itself is Canadian. A: Everyone on this show is Canadian. The entire writing staff, all the actors, the lead is the only one who’s not from Vancouver. He’s from Edmonton. Everyone else is from Vancouver, all the actors are from Vancouver. This week’s director, Anthony Atkins, is from Vancouver, the other guy that we use, Adam Weissman, has his Canadian citizenship. He was born in New York but he has citizenship. So we’re all either natural born or naturalized Canadians working on the show. Q. Mr. Young is filmed in front of a live audience. What are the biggest challenges that come up with that? A: That to me that is the way this kind of sitcom should be done. They got away from it at FUTURÉALE
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some point and thought ‘wouldn’t it be great, it would look great if we could do single camera and we could get in and we could light it this way and we can do that just like we do a drama, but it’s still funny.’ To me when you do that you’re deconstructing the dialogue, the joke, they’re playing off each other. And so you bring in a live audience that proves to the actors, like a play, what’s funny. They laugh there and it brings their energy up because
they’re entertaining people, they’re not just standing there with crew members eating doughnuts in front of the camera. You know good doughnuts don’t get me wrong. Still.
that hasn’t been done up here. We’re trying to make a Canadian show look indistinguishable from anything you see on the Disney Channel or Nickelodeon.
Q. Do you feel you get instant gratification when you have the audience there?
Q. Is there something in particular you really like about working on Mr. Young?
A: Yes. There is a laugh machine you can use to fill in spots and to get it where you want it. But the laugh machine will always laugh when you push the button. The audience will tell you, usually on the first take, that it was funny. You hear the same joke four times in a row, but we know what’s funny, because it was funny the first time and we got to hear the audience laugh.
A: It’s a fantastic environment. We have real creative freedom here. We’re allowed to be silly. We take a little thing and we’re allowed to run it through the entire episode. We’re allowed to run it through other episodes where we’ve created a universe and we refer to other episodes. Its called a callback when you set a joke and then you refer to it ten minutes later or fifteen minutes later or four minutes later. We have the freedom to do a callback two episodes, five episodes later. No one is telling us ‘don’t do that’ so that creative freedom makes Mr. Young just a joy to work on.
Q. Is there anything about Mr. Young that sets it apart from other multi-camera shows? A: We’re not breaking new ground in the sense that, we’re doing what’s been done for fifty years. We’re doing something in Vancouver that’s either never or almost never been done. So we’re breaking new ground in the sense that the entire writing staff, although experienced in other types of writing, had never written a multicamera show – which is more collaborative and slightly different. The camera people, although they have shot stuff forever, are now doing a multi-camera show and that’s different for them. While we’re not doing anything that isn’t done daily in Los Angeles, we’re doing something
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--js and rr
The Good Food Box: The Easy Way to Eat Locally I FIRST CAME ACROSS the Good Food Box last year while in residence at university. One of the members of the Residence Life Program had made my building a Good Food Box ‘stop.’ I filled out a form for the regular Good Food Box and slipped the exact change for seventeen dollars in an envelope. About a week later I received a call to pick up my order in the lobby of my building. The food in that reusable, green, plastic box was enough to last me over two weeks. It’s been a year since I ordered my first Good Food Box and I have ordered one at least once every month since then. The Good Food Box is a prime example of a sustainable food program that is people friendly. Instead of having to go to the local farm or market to find seasonable fruit and vegetables, the fruit and vegetables come to me. Yet, students like myself are not the only ones who can take advantage of this program. The program is ideal for single parents, soccer moms and dads, and career men and women alike. Anyone who is short on time can benefit from the Good Food Box. The program buys its fruit and vegetables directly from local farmers and from the Ontario Food Terminal. The Good Food Box delivers to over a hundred and fifty locations all over the GTA. To get started with the Good Food Box simply send an e-mail to email@example.com. In the e-mail tell the program your nearest major intersection and they will connect you with the closest dropoff location. Another option with the Good Food Box is to start your own drop-off location. In my residence at York University a student made my building a drop-off location. She organized it by putting up information signs on every floor. There is a deadline twice a month to get our orders in. Forms for residences are available at the security station in the lobby. 42
The program helps students like myself who have limited food resources and who don’t have a car to drive to the nearest grocery store. Starting your own Good Food Box project is a way to give to your community a more manageable means of accessing local food. Get started by getting together five to eight members of your community that would want regular orders. Once you get a group together, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to get your drop-off location started. Another bonus in starting your own drop-off location is that the Good Food Box program gives one free box with every ten boxes ordered. There are six different Good Food Boxes available: Good Food Box $17, Small Good Food Box $12, Fruit Box $12, Large Organic Box $32, Small Organic Box $22, and the Wellness Box $12. Each order will vary on what fruit and vegetables are in season and also come with a list of the contents that indicates what is locally grown. Each box you order also comes with newsletter, nutrition information, and recipes on the featured fruit or vegetable contained in that order. There is no limit on the number of Good Food Boxes per person or family. The big bonus of helping out local farmers is that people are also contributing to sustainable eating. Fruit and vegetables that are grown on a mass-production level use more energy than they need to distribute the products. This method also increases the costs of producing the products. For example, when I eat potatoes from an Ontario farm the nutrients are intact because the potatoes weren’t harvested early to be flown in from another province. Buying from a local farm cuts costs and energy because the products travel a shorter distance and are grown on a smaller scale. The Good Food Box also introduces the idea of eating what’s in season. A person can’t choose exactly what they get in their
By: Jess Morton
The Good Food Box order because the program only provides what’s in season. Eating what’s in season is another way to eat in a sustainable fashion. I grew up being able to go to the grocery store and buy whatever I needed not thinking that I was buying mangos from Peru or potatoes from Prince Edward Island. Even now in my second year of university I find it’s second nature for me to take a bus to a grocery store off campus. A grocery store where I know I can get grapefruits and pineapples at any time of the year. Making the effort to eat locally seems more trouble than it’s worth when we have to run to our next lecture, get the kids to soccer practice, or meet a deadline. Where I buy my food from seems like my simplest and oldest habit, making it a habit all the more difficult to break. To completely change how we buy and what we buy is a ridiculous demand of ourselves. A small change like subscribing to the Good Food Box program is an example of a step in the right direction. While I still take trips on the bus to the nearest No Frills, those trips become less frequent with every Good Food Box I order. Making it a habit to order a Good Food Box, even if its just once a month, could be is a simple way to make sustainable eating of part of your busy life. Give back to your community and make your neighborhood a new Good Food Box drop-off location. Anyone involved with a residence life program at his or her university could look into the Good Food Box. I can say from first hand experience that students don’t get much access to for fresh fruit and vegetables. If every residence at every university in the GTA had the Good Food Box eating healthy wouldn’t be a worry. Visit the program website http://www. foodshare.net/goodfoodbox01.htm and see what you can do for yourself, your community, your family, and Ontario farms. FUTURÉALE
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Oneal’s Poetry Corner The Sacred Touch Writers have paved a path for us, even before we began to contribute to the community of poets. We are involved in an active, strong and surviving community. We are all ages, races, genders and backgrounds. We are relevant because authority flows through words! And poetry was brought forth upon the land and it was good. There are two lights, the greater light is called inspiration and the lesser light is called recognition. Therefore, let each poet take their pencil and notepad and then either choose to create inspiration or to seek acknowledgement. Many poets, but not all, have died before their worth has been discovered. This is the suffering of a poet. If we seek recognition then we are doomed to be compulsory poets. Compulsory poets write what is popular. They write what they have not mastered. They write without sincerity. It is the opposite for us, we are to write voluntarily (this refers to the writing process itself, not the business side of poetry). We are to establish a devotion to mastering our craft. We are to write even when there is no request to be published. The joy must flow from the creation and not the publication.
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The publication is the proof that your poem can find an audience.
We are to empower others! Not all of us will be called to face the challenge of walking up Mount Sinai in order to receive a writing style or passion that will change the world. However, if I seek the attention of a reader and this causes a change within the reader, then I am successful. This is my return from the peak of Mount Sinai. Quoted from www.geographia.com/ egypt/sinai/mtsinai.htm “It takes about 3 hours to climb the 7,498-foot peak following the Path of Moses, a stairway of nearly 4,000 steps.” If my sole desire is to exchange my poem for the praises of a reader, then I have accomplished very little as a poet.
Oneal Walters Writer’s Challenge created by Oneal Walters and FutuRéale Magazine The pulse of my poetry is the inclusion of a character. The pulse is special when it includes more than one character. A descriptive poem plants the reader into the world of its characters. The interactions of the characters reveal the story of the poem. I invite you to submit a poem involving two characters. Be descriptive. E-mail your poem to me at email@example.com. I will pick a few and comment on them. Deadline March 31, 2011. --rr
Perfection is not a first draft. Poets please master your craft through voluntary devotion. Become a regular visitor inside your thoughts to cause friction that can then be recorded for the world to see. This friction is not a single draft attempt. As an example, I was working on a verse for a wedding invitation last night with a talented poet. We went through a first, second, third and fourth draft before we discovered the final rough draft. Starting the fifth draft, we completely reexamined each stanza to ensure that it met our requirements. The necessity of mastering our craft also necessitates meeting our established writing standards. We are to preserve our community.
My goal is to give god a position in every poem, My gift is honesty so discovering narratives is easy. I criticize 21st century writers, every poet who doesn’t buy poetry is my rival, this is no means a revival, poetry is remembering, as long as a saviour exists salvation is secure. Here comes my birth: a baby climbs out of the basket, swims through the Nile crawls onto land, is lifted by her hand, forming of letters, name evolving Oneal, a star revolving. The only son of his mother, third son of his father given priest-like duties a messiahs apprentice, seeking a balance. Prophet, Poet or President each represents a cause that ref lects the people. Poetry educates death is in silence. Women follow me outside your sexual sorrow, violence never leads to love. He can’t love and bruise you on the same day, can’t claim to trust and beats you he can’t stop, so stop accepting his excuses, women follow me outside your sexual sorrow.
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It’s Pretty “Hype”:
The Hype Machine is not just your Average Music Blog
I HAVE A LOVE AFFAIR WITH Goulding , alternate R&B group Gorillaz, MUSIC. It’s a perpetuating cycle of and indie band I’m from Barcelona. There
discovering new songs, covers and artists and is the lifestrack to my daily life. I have an addiction to music. I have an insatiable appetite towards the syncopated beat, crave it and savior it at the same time. I don’t think that I have ever had a day where the music has stopped. What kind of technology can resolve this bottomless affinity for the musical lover vernacular?
The only salvation for the musical junkie that comes to mind is the discovery of the musical blog called the Hype Machine. Having fortunately stumbled across it on the internet one day, I could not believe the amount of remixes and covers of songs there online. It’s a great site if you want to know the latest and most up to date remixes and newest artists to hit the music scene. You can even create your own account, favorite your songs, and find out how many people like you have liked the song as well. It has an interactive web layout and is hassle free to use. There are many artists that I would have never known about if not for Hype Machine such as folk-electronic artist Ellie
are tabs where you can take a look at the 50 most popular and innovative songs, while also checking out the top most blogged and liked artists now. You can also see what the upcoming tour dates are for your favorite artists so you can keep tabs on them or just merely enjoy the concert. Whether you agree or disagree with what kind of music the popular consensus has considered “cool”, Hype Machine is the ideal medium for people interested in being current with the most popular music. In addition to discovering new kinds of music, the blog allows users the opportunity to use a search bar so you can play any song, cover and newest remix played from your favourite artist. If you have a passion for listening to songs and just basically have the privilege of being able to hear then you will appreciate and enjoy the existence of the Hype Machine. I know I have gotten a lot of enjoyment out of listening to the various new musical projects found on this blog. It has become my sacred oracle to becoming, dare I say it more “hip” and knowledgeable with the contemporary music of our time. So this is my homage to you Hype Machine, for the countless songs and artists that you have excavated by popular demand for me. You have tamed and appeased my musical beast within, and have satisfied it to its contentment. Do your inner musical beast a favor, and check out the Hype Machine. Odds are you will not be disappointed and it will not be your last encounter with the machine. --rr
By Melissa Lang FUTURÉALE
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FOR THE FIRST TIME IN A DECADE, the Toronto Blue Jays’ opening day roster will not feature a superstar pitcher or an overpaid and under performing centre-fielder. Nor will they be led by a soon to be hall of fame manager. Instead, the Jays’ roster will feature a talented young pitching rotation, a line-up that combines power with raw speed, and a young manager that has only had success at the major league level. Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Alex Anthopoulos era. No more are the ways of wasting money on the Lyle Overbays and Frank Thomas’ of the world; and gone are the ways of playing a “wait and see” style of baseball. After years throwing money at veteran players in the hopes of avoiding a rebuilding season, Blue Jays fans finally have something to get excited about. That excitement started on October 25th, when John Farrell was named as the Blue Jays’ manager. When the announcement was made, Farrell, who formerly served as the Boston
Red Sox’s pitching coach since 2006, promised to bring a more aggressive style of baseball to a passive aggressive club. Farrell believes that by being more aggressive on the base paths and manufacturing runs will allow the team to dictate the pace of the game. Something that they were unable to do when they were overly reliant on winning games by hitting home runs. At 48-years-old, Farrell’s fresh new mindset is exactly what a club like the Blue Jays needs. The entire organization is going through the long process of finding and establishing its true identity without a true superstar or player to build around. When Anthopoulos traded away Vernon Wells earlier this year, it became apparent that he was really trying to do away with the Ricciardi era and create his own. In addition to sending Wells at the remainder of his seven year $126 million contract to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in exchange for slugging
catcher Mike Napoli and reserve outfielder Juan Rivera . While Napoli was eventually traded to the Texas Rangers for closer Frank Francisco, and Juan Rivera will only serve as a reserve outfielder, the Wells trade was even more instrumental to the Jays’ long-term future than last year’s Roy Halladay trade. By dumping Wells’ contract in Hollywood and freeing up the team’s budget, Anthopoulos has not only given himself enough freedom to go out and pursue high profile free-agents, but he has also given himself enough freedom to resign one of his young players if they are to have a breakout season. Between the money that the Blue Jays saved, and the fact that they acquired a new potential closer in frank Francisco, the Wells trade can easily be regarded as one of the most successful trades in Blue Jays history. While the Wells trade was a complete success, the same cannot be said about Anthopoulos’ December sixth trade that saw Shaun Marcum leave for Milwaukee in exchange for Brett Lawrie, a minor league second basemen. While Lawrie is a young Canadian prospect
that has the potential to become an offensive juggernaut when he finally breaks into the league, trading away a strong pitcher is never a good thing. Had Marcum stayed in Toronto, he most likely would have been the ace of the young pitching staff. The Jays were set to enter the 2011 season without Scott downs and Kevin Gregg, two relief pitchers who played key roles in FUTURÉALE
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the bullpen last season. With a rather thin bullpen, Anthopoulos turned to the open market for answers. With signings like Jon Rauch, Chad Cordero, Octavio Dotel, Carlos Villanueva and the acquisition of Frank Francisco, the Jays’ bullpen transformed from a potential weakness into one of the team’s biggest strengths. But the reason why fans should be excited for the upcoming season is because of the progress that they made last season. Players like Brandon Morrow, Brett Cecil, Yunel Escobar and Jose Bautista came into their own last season and are all set to have big years in 2011. If that’s not enough, the Jays’ stacked farm system should keep a constant flux of quality players that fans will be cheering for for the next few years. With the season set to start in less than a month, here are some of the key story lines to watch out for. Jose Bautista’s contract: Jose Bautista’s 2010 campaign was the best season of his seven year career as he finished the season with a .260 batting average and 124 runs batted in (RBI). Oh yeah, he also led Major League Baseball with 54 home runs. After his career year, the Blue Jays offered Bautista $7 million because he was eligible for salary arbitration, but he denied their offer, wanting $10 million instead. While it is highly unlikely that Bautista comes anywhere close to the numbers
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that he put up last season, the fact that he is a leader in the clubhouse that is comprised of young talent makes Bautista worthy of longterm contract. While negotiations are expected to continue throughout spring training, and possibly the season, look for the Jays to lock up Bautista and make him the focal point of their long term plans. The Pitching Rotation: While Ricky Romero, Brandon Morrow, Brett Cecil and Kyle Drabek are all but locked into the first four spots of the rotation, the fifth spot of the rotation is up for grabs. Brad Mills, Robert Ray, Jesse Litsch, David Purcey, Mark Rzepczynski and even Scott Richmond
will all be competing for that coveted fifth spot, with Mills and Rzepczynski being the front-runners for the job. While Mills and Rzepczynski are the top two players for the position, look for Scott Richmond, who is coming off of shoulder surgery to make a strong bid for the position. This battle will be an interesting one to keep an eye out on throughout spring training. The Closer’s Role: What initially looked to be one of the Blue Jays’ biggest weaknesses coming into the season has quickly turned into their biggest strength. The thing that makes this battle interesting is that most of the relief pitchers that the Blue Jays have have had some experience closing out games. Jon Rauch had 21 saves for the Minnesota Twins last year, while Frank Francisco had 25 saves for the Texas Rangers in 2009. This battle is so interesting, is that there is so much experience in the bullpen that anyone of the Blue
Jays’ newly acquired relievers can be named the team’s closer. Another interesting thing to note is that with all of the experience in the bullpen, that if the named closer can be easily replaced if he struggles in the early goings of the season. Rajai Davis: While he is nothing special to look at on paper, the Blue Jays’ success will be extremely reliant on Davis’ success. Before the Blue Jays acquired Fred Lewis from the San Francisco Giants early last season, they were unable to keep a steady line-up because they had no true lead-off hitter. Not only does Davis provide the team with an experienced top of the line-up hitter, he also provides them with speed and the ability to steal bases. If Farrell is serious about having the Jays manufacture their runs and control the pace of the game, then Davis will have to contribute in a big way. Look for him to steal anywhere between 40 and 50 bases this season. The Blue Jays will enter the 2011 season with some stiff competition, but if they can build on last season’s success, then this team has a legitimate chance to compete with the Rays, the Red Sox and the Yankees for the division. --rr
ZILBERSCHMUCK Portal to Jewellery Imaginations
This is the first in a series of articles on Jewellery artists, designers and makers in the Toronto area. It is important for me to open this series with an interview with Cheryl Fraser, the owner of Zilberschmuck gallery. More than a leader in the artistic community, Cheryl dedicates her energy and resources to discovering and promoting promising artists while welcoming all of us to learn about these creative people and their processes that bring their beautiful ideas to life. Cheryl, what do you enjoy about your customers? I am interested in the reception from the GTA to your gallery and artisans in general. I am passionate about the work and the artists I represent and if you want to take the time to find the perfect piece I can help you. I can tell you about the process, techniques, concepts of the work and the artists themselves. One part of this job I really enjoy is helping couples decide on an artist to create their wedding and engagement rings. Everyone wants to be a part of the process, to feel special and to have his or her input heard. We live in a cookie cutter world with repetitious houses and mass-produced clothing, so if you can help design your ring, just the way you like it youâ€™ll be happier to wear it. In this time with the internet, people search online for the place to purchase that special piece or to have it created for them and I have customers come in from Kitchener, Mississauga and Meaford to name a few. I have loyal Zilberschmuck customers that only buy their jewellery from me, and if something special comes in, I call them. What inspired you to run a gallery? What is the difference between your jewellery 48
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gallery and a jewellery store? What are the challenges? My post secondary education after a year in Business at UNB was at the New Brunswick Craft School. Since then I had been working in print production for over 20 years and during that time I attended many continuing education jewellery classes in casting and fabricating at George Brown College. It was during one of these classes while making a ring I thought that there were many much more talented makers than I. I knew how things were made and I thought there was a real need for a very good venue to showcase Canadian artists. Through my travels abroad, I had sought out little galleries and artist’s studios to find interesting pieces and realized that Toronto needed such a place too. So Zilberschmuck was opened in 2003, selling silver jewellery with paintings and photography, but now includes gold jewellery, and other fine crafts like ceramics, glass, wood, paintings and etchings. This was to be more than a regular jewellery store. I had plans on organizing and exhibiting shows for the artists to engage the public. I started with a fashion show and establishing a national juried exhibition, [this May it will be in its 7th year] to showcase the talented people we have in this country and encourage Canadians to support their artists. I host group and solo shows throughout the year and send out the details to my customer base about what’s new this month. I believe that metal work is ignored as an art form, because it is fine craft, but it is part of our culture and if you like to support the local wineries and farmers and if you wear Canadian fashion designer’s clothing, why not wear a piece of jewellery created by a Canadian too?
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What would you like to see developing in the relationship between artists and the public? Over the years, I have noticed more and more people coming to see the shows and the stable of artists on display. If they like the show, I tell them to bring their friends and family. It makes me smile when someone comes in and upon entering the gallery starts telling their companions the stories about the work and the artists. This shows me that they are supporting the gallery’s artists by passing on word of mouth about our shop and its work. One lady said she doesn’t have to go downtown when she has out of town visitors because it’s all here in one place. I like to see people remember the artist’s name, but I’m still happy when they bring in a piece and ask for something from the same person to “go with it”. Master goldsmiths and silversmiths told me they feel Zilberschmuck is the only true jewellery gallery in Toronto. Zilberschmuck gallery has different ideas and materials. Everyone who comes here wants to own their own unique piece and they’re excited about looking for it. At chain jewellery store, for example, people often have X dollars and look for something to put in a box. People who come here are trying to find something special. However, a gallery is so much more. We have shows as well as competitions, which the artists love. The juried exhibition this May has the theme “Inspired by - A Canadian Person, Place or Thing”. The theme was voted on by my subscription list of 334 artists. The great thing about this theme is that artists can base their work on a favorite song, a mountain – it’s so open. We encourage people do more and participate in the shows because it’s a lot of hard work. These shows are important because if you want to be a 49
serious artist you need a resume that shows that you exhibit. There are so few national shows, and some are regional only for artists out west. There are other places you can buy something handmade but not in a gallery setting. This is so much more than just selling something and saying goodbye. I get passionate about explaining the technical part of the skills involved in creating something beautiful. A gallery does more. We want to continue educating the public about this rich community of artists and the ongoing creativity. In this competitive market, how do you establish your pricing?
Prices are always a challenge. The artists price their work based on time and materials. We, [myself and the artists] are competing with mass produced jewellery from offshore. Price is always an issue, and we use precious metals, not “mystery” metal; it always comes down to “you get what you paid for”. You are not just buying a piece of metal; you are buying a piece of art. Having worked in the jewellery department of a large chain store in the late 70’s, I saw the wholesale price marked up by 400%, then when they decided to “have a sale”, they could mark it down 50% and still make money. Zilberschmuck doesn’t have sales, you get the best price all year round and you have supported someone from this country. Our earrings start at $25 and go to $240 in sterling silver. Silver rings start at $85 to $200, more with a stone. The median purchase is around $120. What you would like the readers to expect from you and their gallery experience when they come to see you? What would you like to suggest to the readers to encourage them to feel like they’ll be happy they took the time to come out and see you? A friendly and relaxed atmosphere greets you when you arrive; comfort and ease come to mind. I don’t use high-pressure tactics and I take the time to tell you about the pieces you’re interested in and to help you decide on the perfect one. I want you to be very happy with your purchase, I want you bond with it and to love it forever. Building relationships with the artists and my customers is a very important for me and I’ve worked very hard to show the public that Zilberschmuck isn’t just another pendant and chain place, it’s part of the community and if you enjoy great design and seeing creative and quality products just one trip to the gallery will not be a disappointment.
What services are available to your customers? Our artists will design and make custom wedding and engagement rings, re-model old jewellery into a new contemporary piece and we also repair broken treasures and if they can’t find exactly what they want, they can commission an artist to create something special. Have you noticed any trends with your artists? Many artists work at their crafts part time, due to the amount of time required to fabricate their pieces. Their income is not high. Artists in their 50’s often do well because their kids are grown and their mortgages are paid. Younger people often have big debts and not enough sales to rely completely on their jewellery income. How do you start a relationship with a new artist? Generally they send me a link to their website or e-mail me images and if I like the work and it is different from what I already have on hand we’ll make an appointment for them to show me what they have. Once we are together I look at the piece to see how well it is made. If you want to show me your work, polish it well. You have to be ready; this is an interview and both you and your work are applying for a position. I critique young artist’s works looking through a group of random pieces and find ones that have potential and encourage them to develop a line in this style. Sometimes out of province galleries recommend me to their artists but mostly I go to craft shows looking for new artists that are making exciting and different things to add to the stable. --rr FUTURÉALE
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IT’S A BLISTERING COLD DAY
outside with winds howling and light f luffy snow rolls over the icy roads. It’s the middle of winter and hibernation is in season both for animals and humans. The days are short and cold and the sunlight barely warms up your face when you do manage to get outside. Despite it being so cold on many a winter day, there are days when the weather does get mild and those are the days when you should get out of your hibernation stage. There are plenty of things to do on a mild winter day in Toronto, Ontario. Winter activities such as skiing, snowboarding, ice skating and snowshoeing are great activities to do either with friends, family or individually. There are two parks that offer skiing and snowboarding in Toronto. Centennial Park is located at 256 Centennial Park Road, Etobicoke and the other is Earl Bales Park located at 4169 Bathurst Street, Toronto. Earle Bales Park and Centennial Park have a lot to offer, they have a skiing and snowboarding school on their premises which offer different programs and lessons in both skiing and snowboarding. Programs have different levels, from beginner to expert, for both children and adults.
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Earle Bales Park has one of the largest ski schools in Ontario, with 1,700 lessons/programs that are available. “We get around 100,000 skier visits each season,” says Rob Mungham, Community Recreation Supervisor of Toronto Ski and Snowboard Centres. Earle Bales Park has artificial snow which is looked over carefully each day to make sure there are no problems. “It is easier to learn to ski on artificially made snow than on real snow,” says Rob Mungham. For those of you that have never gone skiing before, that is good news. Rentals at both parks go for people that are 19 + all day for just $28 admission and renting of full set of skis, boots, and poles are only $25. Imagine cross country skiing slowly up a slow steep hill, taking in the quiet still air around you. You are surrounded by forest and it feels as though you are the last person on the planet. The sense of peace envelops you and you don’t want to let it go. As you continue going up the hill, you are putting all your effort into reaching the top, and when you get there it is time to go downhill. As you slightly bend your knees and hold onto the poles,
you start to descend, gaining more and more speed with every second. The wind is in your hair, your face, and all you feel is the rush of going so fast, the exhilaration. When you get down to a flat surface, the only thing that is going through your head is doing that all over again. Even if you were terrified the first time, the second time you will not be. Skiing both offers the scenic tour as well as great exercise for both with its hills and slopes. “January is our most popular month. I think it is because people get new equipment over the holidays and then they go and test them out.”Mungham says regarding when most people get outside. Aside from normal skiing, those that enjoy the night, should try out the night skiing. The hills are not dark; they are lit to make it look like daytime, so there is nothing to fear. Snowboarding at night on the hills would also be something interesting to try for those that have never done it. For those of you that enjoy the snowboarding and skiing each season as well as new comers to the sports, better head out there soon because the season is almost over. “We close the Sunday of March break. We have attempted to keep it open longer, but the
interest in Ontario declines and people tend to put their equipment away after March break, “Mungham stated regarding the closing of the hills. He also said that people are less interested after March break because they are waiting for the arrival spring and they want warmer weather.
Ice skating For those of you that do not want to climb the hills or snowboard down the hills, ice skating is another fun activity that can be enjoyed by the whole family. Popular rinks include Nathan Phillips Square just a few blocks from Osgoode Station and Harbourfront’s ice rink located at Harbourfront. Skate rentals are only $10 dollars per person, which is a really great price to have fun. There are numerous ice skating rinks all over the city that one can search and go to. Some are over populated like Nathan Phillips Square, while others are less crowded due to lack of attendance or knowledge of the ice skating rink. There have been a couple of new outdoor ice skating rinks that have been opened. One is Sherbourne Common Skating rink which is located south of Queen’s Quay between lower Sherbourne and Bonnycastle Streets. A second one is by the Sheraton Hotel downtown. Whether one wants to be out in the open or surrounded by the woods there is
an outdoor ice rink in the city that is willing to accommodate you. “It takes a while to get your bearings if you’ve never done it before. I kept falling every few minutes because my balance is not that great but after the first hour it was fun,” said Katie, an ice skater at the Mel Lastman Square outdoor ice skating rink which is in North York.
Snowshoeing Another great activity that one can engage in is snowshoeing. It’s a combination of hiking and sightseeing mixed into one. Snowshoeing goes back six thousand years ago to what is now present day Asia. Back then, it was a used as a means of survival to trap, hunt, and travel long distances. Up until the 1970s, the snowshoes were used primarily for survival and employment, and then it switched more over to recreational use. One place that one can go exploring on their snowshoes, either individually or with children is located at the Humber Arboretum next to Humber College North Campus. The Centre for Urban Ecology at the Humber Arboretum provides events such as winter hikes on snowshoes. The cost with snowshoe rental is only $11.30 per person or $42.94 per family (2 adults and 2 children). Those that have been on these hikes before have reported seeing all
kinds of animals on the trail and around them, such as foxes, coyotes, deer, raccoons, squirrels, owls and moose. “Lots of new people come out to try it. It’s a great winter activity and it is great exercise. People tend to come out even if it is cold outside. You tend to work up a bunch of heat and you sweat,” said Barb Fox, Coordinator at the Centre for Urban Ecology. Depending on the amount of snow, there are either less or more snowshoe events because one cannot snowshoe if there is no snow on the ground. “The groups can be up to 35 people and there are between 20 to 30 different snow shoe sizes available depending whether it is a child or adult. The snowshoe is based on body weight not normal shoe sizes.” Fox said regarding the types of snow shoes that they have available at their centre. The hills by the Arboretum are quite steep as well so one can go tobogganing. There are no fees for the tobogganing. Anywhere there is a hill; one can slide down on a cardboard box or a plastic that can be bought at a Canadian Tire or any other store which has tobogganing equipment. So don’t be afraid to head outside and have some fun. Remember to dress warm and appropriate for the weather and winter will become less of an enemy and more of a friend. --rr
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K.C. COLLINS LOST GIRL’S Detective Hale (K.C. Collins) has fought hard with determination and grit to get where he is today. The show has more than two million viewers and its popularity keeps on growing. K.C. Collins plays as Hale, Dyson’s colleague and another Fae undercover agent in the police force. He plays a siren and is able to control the mind of humans and even other Fae through his. He didn’t always want to get into acting. He was born in Toronto, Ontario but currently lives in Los Angeles, California. In addition to being a television actor, he is also a movie and voice actor.
Chris Collins has many names that he goes by and they were all created at different life stages to portray different roles in which he would be represented in. K.C. was created by Chris deciding on the proper way to spell his name. Chris to him was the athlete though he wanted to be a serious actor at a certain point. Instead of going with a C he went with a K and another persona was born. This persona went against the grain and fought for what he believed in which was to not blend in to society. The nickname ‘Mezmo’ was created when someone complemented him on his mesmerizing eyes when sunlight flashed on his eyes. He was involved in drama for a bit when he was in school but it was nothing serious. Nothing compared to being a real actor and in the spotlight. “It is a huge leap. I dabbled in acting a bit before quitting school. It was more of an experience than a career.”
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and continued to live his life and acting began to look serious. “I know it sounds corny but the acting bug got me. It was a better high than baseball. I felt like I was baseballed out.” Starting at the bottom of the chain feed, he started being just in the background and soon was able to get some speaking lines ranging from four lines to eleven lines. He kept on waiting for a role no matter how small to come and his waiting and patience paid off. When he landed his first role on Due South (1997) as Jamal Martin it was an experience.
He was on a baseball scholarship when he was faced with a tough decision. He wanted to sponsor his mother from Jamaica. In order to be able to do that he had to make enough money and he wasn’t making enough.
“It was the most frightening experience ever. I was so used to being in control. On the set there is no control and you are vulnerable to those around you,” Collins recalls his feelings when he was on his first set.
“It came to the decision between chasing a dream (baseball) or facing reality (sponsoring his mother).” He faced reality
With no previous acting experience and no one there to guide or tell him how to do things, he took matters into his own hands. 53
“I didn’t know whether it was a rehearsal or being filmed. I always went 100% during rehearsals and takes. I watched the other actors and learned from them.” Through his personality and acting skills he was able to get the roles of both Love Songs (1999) and Red Sneakers (2002) right on the spot. In Love Songs, the directors had already looked for more than two weeks for a particular individual to fit the role of “Tom Tom” and when K.C. Collins auditioned, he was the right man for the role. In The Red Sneakers, he knew he was going to get it. The director, Gregory Hines, made it a relaxing atmosphere and shook hands with everyone, which is a rare occurrence. “I was in the zone in that audition, and I knew I would get it. When Mr. Hines shook hands with everyone, he went from being a legend to a human being and approachable. After I got the part, I walked up and down Yonge Street for hours because I was too giddy to be able to drive. It was an amazing experience in my life since I admired him.” He has also been involved in the popular Flashpoint Television series back in 2009 and is well known in the movies Bullet Proof Monk (2003) and Poor Boy’s Game (2007) where he played a mentally challenged young man and the son of Danny Glover’s character. He has been nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a leading role in a dramatic program or miniseries in 2007 for the show Doomstown (2006). As well he has won outstanding performance for a male in the movie Guns (2008).
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Besides being on Lost Girl, he is currently working on Hello October which is in post production. As for what the future holds for him in the business, “I plan to be the next Will Smith. He is an amazing actor and seems to be humble . His career is something everyone should model.” Collins has gathered this from what he knows and has seen. As to why this type of genre compared to those that are out there that can be used and played, “I love spreading positivity. I love action. I am going to be an action star and I feel comfortable with action.” Lost Girl “I wasn’t sure I wanted to do Lost Girl since it was science fiction. I saw myself as a dramatic actor. I’m the guy that is looking for an Oscar. I kept saying to myself this isn’t for me, I’m going to pass on this role..” Through a lot of persuasion and a long discussion with his agent he decided to do the role and he does not regret it. The show has shown him that you can have a lot of fun and even if it something that he has not done before, he should still try it out since something good can come out of it. “I like to be dramatic and have fun.” By being Detective Hale in Lost Girl, he is able to accomplish that. When he was not as busy with acting, he used to do voice for sponsors such as Guiness, and Bacardi. He stopped when his acting roles began to take a lot of his time and energy. “Then my agent told me about Gatorade’s “What’s G Campaign”. So I went in and landed it and started doing voice work again. I’ve been with them for about a year and I’ve FUTURÉALE
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done about six or seven spots for them such as George St. Pierre and Sydney Crosby. It’s been a blast and I love it.” Whenever they ask him to do another spot, there is no hesitation and he goes right in. “I like being associated with Gatorade.” Actors just like regular citizens all have their good and bad days which they struggle to overcome and move on. When K.C. Collins has a bad day it seems like the worst type of days for him. “When I get down or my day is going bad, those are the worst days ever because everyone depends on you. I don’t listen to anyone on set whether I did a good or a bad job or whether there is even any comment on my performance. Actors are so sensitive because you strip yourself naked and you become vulnerable. I trust myself and the director. When times get hard, I go to my room and remember that I am here for a reason. I am here to make a serious change in the world. As well that I am the best person for the role.”
When discussing where Canada will be heading in the future in his industry he said, “Canada is finally getting the picture but needs to speed things up. We have to trust the formula. There’s a world with all kinds of different tastes. People want different things and we have to give people what they want or we’ll be dead in the water. There’s money in Canada and we have the projects, we have to start doing them. If people don’t want to take chances we need to tell them to get out and move on without them.” --rr
By Olena Protsiv 55
ROSS MORROW SI LV ER IS PL A ST IC I N T H E H A N DS OF A M A ST ER I also try to keep the fun in my work. I made a mustard pot with a mouse on the outside of it. Who has called mustard mouse turd when we were small? Silversmithing is heavy work and for a time, it seemed to be a dying art. How did you learn it?
Ross, what makes you definable, as an artist? I’m constantly seeking to expand my technical base. Silversmithing is done by hand. It can’t be replicated in other ways. Some techniques are time consuming. People just can’t do them anymore. I did a swirly pot – I’m more into it these days. It’s a French technique from around 1725 to 1730. It involves filling the piece with pitch as its form. This isn’t done now. You can be so much more creative when you push a media to get more complex shapes. Non ferrous metals like silver, gold and copper are plastic media which can give you different shapes. I try to keep older techniques alive. They’re not normally used because they take a lot of time.
There are so many aspects to silversmithing. It’s a seven-year apprenticeship. There is an endless potential to learn. I learned in Ireland, mostly in short bursts. In 1996 I started two week intensive workshops. I learned more in that first two-weeks than in the previous six years. I still try to work with Canadian artists.
ART FOR OUR SAKES
myself to two courses per semester – max. I like to teach for the interaction with my students but I also want to work in my studio. Do you do more work by spec or do you get a lot of commissions? I do more commissions than spec. I prefer larger pieces by commission. These come from corporations, requests for sports trophies as well as individuals. I made a
When I met you, you were already a popular teacher. One semester, your class was booked in twenty minutes. Did you always want to teach? It wasn’t that way. In 2000, I was president of MAG (Metal Arts Guild) of Canada; a teacher from OCAD (Ontario College of Art and Design) was going on a sabbatical and asked me to fill in for a semester. That worked out OK. Two years later I was teaching night school at George Brown College and I was asked to teach there during days. Then I was asked to teach at Georgian College. Once I got my foot in the door, people I knew asked me a lot. Now, I teach at all three but I limit FUTURÉALE
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pair of candelabras, years ago, for a private collector. He told me people always talked about them. Now he wants me to make a champagne bucket. Your students start with copper and brass, of course. What metals do you use, mostly? I work almost entirely with silver, although I have worked with gold and bronze. And it’s never with fine silver because it’s too soft and wears down. I always use sterling silver because it gets its strength form the copper that’s alloyed with it. What’s your message? In this day of mass production, I’m making pieces that are one of a kind. Even if they’re similar, every piece is different. People want their piece to be unique. You have an opportunity to own something that won’t
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be replicated. That man’s candelabras are so different and unique that people always talk about them. If people have an opportunity to meet an artist and buy something from him or her, they’d have a different point of view. It’s difficult to grasp the amount of time that is involved in making one piece. It took me two hundred hours to make a coffee pot. When people understand that, they appreciate what they have. Af ter most students take your class they leave silversmithing for their goldsmith careers. Does any of it stay with them?
they’re doing. I can learn something new in my shop every day. And that excites me. --rr
By Marcus Pidek
By Marcus Pidek
It stays with them on any sized piece, jewellery or bigger. These skills are not just for silversmithing – they’re transferable. They’re about what metal can do. They can take it in any direction they want to. They’ll understand how to be better jewellers. They can see, learn, absorb and put it into what