Monday, November 22, 2010

Angry Birds Peace Treaty (VIDEO)

This is one of the funniest videos I have seen in a while! The voices are great and the costumes are incredibly realistic. Anyone who has played Angry Birds on their mobile phone will really enjoy this. 

ENJOY!! I laughed sooo hard. 

Say what???!!

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Japanese tapas anyone? - Zakkushi Restaurant Review

Last night my friend Natalie, my husband and I decided to go out for some tapas at a local Japanese restaurant called Zakkushi. The restaurant is located in the Mount Pleasant neighbourhood and the vibe is very modern and fun. As soon as you walk in you get greeted by the cheerful staff who yell out something in Japanese to welcome you. The menu selection is quite large as the restaurant offers sushi rolls, skewers, fried rice, noodles and dessert. Here are some photos we took last night. As you can see, the food is nicely presented and the taste is great too.















Let me know what you think if you decide to give it a try!

www.zakkushi.com

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Friday, November 12, 2010

East Is East - True Cultural Dining in Vancouver

I had heard many great things about East Is East before but I had never actually ventured out to try it. The food is a fusion of Indian and Afghani cuisine. The restaurant's vibe is very laid back and the decor very unique (with low wooden tables, banquets, and tapestries on the walls). We ordered the "Feast" for two (below) - a combination of salad, appetizer, and two main dishes. The "Feast" is refillable as many times as you want and at a price of $19 per person it is very reasonable. My favourites were the Lamb Kebab and the Alu Gobi. The Himalayan High milkshake was excellent too - a mixture of mango, pistachio, rosewater and cardamom! Yum!






Once we were done with our individual platters we decided to give desert a try. We ended up ordering the Easter Ecstasy (below) - very tasty!








To add to an already great dinner we were also entertained by a belly dancer performer! 

Overall, I would recommend giving East Is East a try as there is nothing else like it in Vancouver... You will feel like you have gone on an exotic holiday :)


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Thursday, November 11, 2010

Provence. Great brunch in Vancouver's Marina-side.



I have now visited Provence twice in the last month and both times I have been really impressed by the service, location and of course the food on their menu. I am in love with their shrimp and crab cakes eggs benedict. They are to die for!

Next time you are on the hunt for a great place to eat brunch give Provence a try. Happy eating!

http://www.provencevancouver.com/marinaside/

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Monday, October 4, 2010

It Gets Better


I created this video to share my positive experiences as an openly gay married man living in Vancouver, Canada. I would like this to serve as an inspiration for those LGTB individuals across the world who are currently struggling due to their sexuality. Don't give up! It gets much better :)

For more information and other great videos please visit:

http://www.youtube.com/user/itgetsbetterproject

http://www.facebook.com/pages/It-Gets-Better-Project/158071744210603

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Monday, July 12, 2010

Summer 2010 Music Recommendations

There is nothing better than some great tunes to accompany you as you strut your stuff at the local pool or beach. This summer has brought some great music along with it and it is my duty as a fellow music lover to share the goodness with you. I have been listening to a few CDs over the past few weeks and there are some noteworthy finds.

First and foremost we will focus on Aphrodite - the musical return of the now 40+ queen of dance Kylie Minogue. Aphrodite is very smooth from start to finish. By now Kylie seems to have perfected the exact formula for creating a very enjoyable album experience. The beats and lyrics are strong and catchy and even though she doesn't really deviate much from her previous records, her sound remains fresh and appealing. The best songs in the album in my opinion are: "Put Your Hands Up", "Looking For An Angel", "All The Lovers" and "Aphrodite" - I give this album a 9 out of 10 for heavily relying on previous successes instead of willing to experiment and grow further.

Aphrodite

Next on our list is Kaskade's Dynasty. I must admit that even though I had always enjoyed Kaskade's sound I often found myself not being able to fully immerse in it due to its lack of lyrics. I love dance music in general but I tend to get bored of instrumental music quite quickly as I love singing along. Dynasty is a completely different story. In this new album Kaskade collaborates with various female artists to create a true masterpiece of both beats AND vocals. Dynasty has some amazing songs like "Fire In Your New Shoes" featuring Dragonette and my absolute favourite "Say It's Over" featuring Mindy Gledhill. The overall sound of the album is electro-dance and in my opinion Dynasty should be a part of anyone's CD collection. I give this album a perfect 10 due to the strength of its sound and the cohesiveness of the album. 

Dynasty

Unexpectedly so, Taio Cruz also really delivers on his debut album Rokstarr. As of right now Taio is not very famous in North America but he is already quite popular in Europe. His album is a mixture of contemporary love songs, hip hop music, and club hits. His smash single "Break Your Heart" is a good indication of what the rest of his album is like - if you enjoy that song I am sure you will love the rest of the record. For a debut album Taio did a great job in establishing himself as a recording artist. I give Rokstarr an 8.5 out of 10 for strong and seductive vocals accompanied by sexy beats. 

Rokstarr

Another famous dance artist to re-emerge this year is Goldfrapp with her album Head First. Goldfrapp has been known to inspire artists of the caliber of Madonna. Goldfrapp's album delivers exactly what Kylie's misses - a unique and experimental sound that will undoubtedly aid in the evolution of electronic music. The now classic song "Rocket" is just one of the many examples in which Goldfrapp shows her masterful use of music as a language. Head First is a deeper album in all meanings of the word and as such it can be deemed as artistic. I give this album a 9.5 out of 10 for its originality and for Goldfrapp's ability to combine old and new sounds with grace.

Head First 

The end of our musical journey ends today with a series of albums I stumbled upon simply by chance. I am referring to a compilation that gathers the best artists and songs of electronic music in the last five years and puts them together for our enjoyment. The Kitsuné Maison CD series is put together by the French fashion and electronic music label Kitsuné. Even though you may recognize some of the artists in this series I can guarantee that you will also discover some amazing new talents that will blow you away. To this date I am still grateful for having been able to come across these CDs as they are a true musical gem - a definite 12 out of 10 score! 

Kitsune Maison Kitsuné Maison Compilation 2 Kitsune Maison Compilation 3 
Kitsuné Maison Compilation 4 Kitsune Maison Compilation 5 Kitsune Maison Vol. 6
Kitsuné Maison Compilation 7 [Explicit] Kitsune Maison 8 Kitsune Maison 9

I hope this article helps you find some amazing new tracks to listen to.  And remember... living without music is not living. Enjoy!~

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Saturday, July 3, 2010

Cucumber Power


1. Cucumbers contain most of the vitamins you need every day, just one cucumber contains Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Folic Acid, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Zinc.

2. Feeling tired in the afternoon, put down the caffeinated soda and pick up a cucumber. Cucumbers are a good source of B Vitamins and Carbohydrates that can provide that quick pick-me-up that can last for hours.

3. Tired of your bathroom mirror fogging up after a shower? Try rubbing a cucumber slice along the mirror, it will eliminate the fog and provide a soothing, spa-like fragrance.

4. Are grubs and slugs ruining your planting beds? Place a few slices in a small pie tin and your garden will be free of pests all season long. The chemicals in the cucumber react with the aluminum to give off a scent undetectable to humans but drive garden pests crazy and make them flee the area.

5. Looking for a fast and easy way to remove cellulite before going out or to the pool? Try rubbing a slice or two of cucumbers along your problem area for a few minutes, the phytochemicals in the cucumber cause the collagen in your skin to tighten, firming up the outer layer and reducing the visibility of cellulite. Works great on wrinkles too!!!

6. Want to avoid a hangover or terrible headache? Eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed and wake up refreshed and headache free. Cucumbers contain enough sugar, B vitamins and electrolytes to replenish essential nutrients the body lost, keeping everything in equilibrium, avoiding both a hangover and headache!!

7. Looking to fight off that afternoon or evening snacking binge? Cucumbers have been used for centuries and often used by European trappers, traders and explores for quick meals to thwart off starvation.

8. Have an important meeting or job interview and you realize that you don't have enough time to polish your shoes? Rub a freshly cut cucumber over the shoe, its chemicals will provide a quick and durable shine that not only looks great but also repels water.

9. Out of WD 40 and need to fix a squeaky hinge? Take a cucumber slice and rub it along the problematic hinge, and voila, the squeak is gone!

10. Stressed out and don't have time for massage, facial or visit to the spa? Cut up an entire cucumber and place it in a boiling pot of water, the chemicals and nutrients from the cucumber with react with the boiling water and be released in the steam, creating a soothing, relaxing aroma that has been shown the reduce stress in new mothers and college students during final exams.

11. Just finish a business lunch and realize you don't have gum or mints? Take a slice of cucumber and press it to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds to eliminate bad breath, the phytochemicals will kill the bacteria in your mouth responsible for causing bad breath.

12. Looking for a 'green' way to clean your faucets, sinks or stainless steel? Take a slice of cucumber and rub it on the surface you want to clean, not only will it remove years of tarnish and bring back the shine, but is won't leave streaks and won't harm you fingers or fingernails while you clean.

13. Using a pen and made a mistake? Take the outside of the cucumber and slowly use it to erase the pen writing, also works great on crayons and markers that the kids have used to decorate the walls!!

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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

ZUMBA - Is It Possible To Have Fun While Getting In Shape?


I had been meaning to get my act together for a while now when it comes to becoming a more active person. I work an office job that requires me to sit for almost eight hours a day and therefore my body is definitely lacking the physical activity I was once used to. I don't really tend to enjoy going to the gym by myself as I find it is very hard to keep motivated and to push myself. I have always preferred "social" workouts or classes in which people can interact with each other and feed off each other's energy.

I heard about Zumba at the beginning of the year from my cousin who recently moved to Vancouver from Mexico. Zumba is apparently all the rage in the U.S. and Latin America right now as it basically gets you in shape by dancing to merengue, cumbia, salsa, calypso and other high-energy types of music. I had visited the Zumba Vancouver website to learn more about it but until last night I hadn't actually ventured to try it.

According to Wikipedia, Zumba was created by Alberto "Beto" Perez in Colombia during the 1990s. The program combines latin and international music with dance in an effort to make exercise fun. The Zumba workout provides fitness benefits because its routines feature interval training sessions with fast and slow rhythms and resistance training, which are intended to tone and sculpt the body while burning fat.


The class I attended is held every Tuesday at 6:15pm at the False Creek Community Centre in Granville Island and is lead by Zumba instructor Janet McLeish. Janet is a very charismatic woman who will push you to the next level while screaming, dancing, and most of all having fun. The Zumba class goes by really quickly when compared to a traditional workout and half of the time you are going to be laughing and dancing so at the end you will end up craving more. Having been born in Mexico where dancing is a crucial part of our culture, I thoroughly enjoyed this class as I felt like I was transported back to Latin America for 60 minutes. In my opinion, Zumba is the epitome of what a workout should be - fun, high-energy, and social.

I would highly recommend for you to try a Zumba class or to buy some DVDs to do it at home. If you are free on Tuesdays and you live in Vancouver come dance with us - you won't regret it!


To sign up for my class go to: https://pbregister.vancouver.ca/safari_activitybrowse.htm and then click on browse activities and enter the following activity number 41609.202FC

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Friday, June 25, 2010

The New iPhone 4 - Is It A Lemon?

Those of you who know me in person know exactly how long I have been waiting to update to the new iPhone 4. The new iPhone has some amazing features as previously discussed on this post, however it seems that now that it has been officially released problems have started to arise.

The first and biggest problem in my opinion is the fact that people are having reception issues when they hold the phone in a way that covers both of the external antennas. Carrier signals start to decrease and eventually calls may be dropped altogether. I have read over 40 pages of forum posts at macrumors in which people show links to videos and newspaper articles that either deny or ratify this problem. The problem is thoroughly explained in the following video:




To make things even more dramatic, Steve Jobs himself replied to an iPhone 4 user's e-mail in which he tells the user to simply "avoid holding the phone in that way" - This was first reported by Engadget and it has caused a tremendous amount of controversy in the mobile and tech communities as no phone should ever be designed in a way that hinders usability. Apple also claims that adding a silicone case or an official bumper will resolve the problem. This has worked for some users but not for all of them.




Another issue of the new iPhone 4 is the fact that some of the units show yellow blotches on the retina display. This may be due to the iPhones being shipped out prematurely and therefore not allowing the glue that secures the screen's glass to the phone to cure properly. Some users seem to support this theory by stating that such blotches disappear over time by simply continuing to use the phone.




Lastly, two other small problems have been reported. Some users have stated that their volume buttons work properly but that the buttons themselves have been reversed - this means the increase volume button would show a minus and the decrease volume button would show a plus. As stated by TiPb this would only be bothersome aesthetically and not functionally. The other "issue" is that the glass on the iPhone 4 has already been able to be scratched by some users even though Apple claims that it is stronger than ever before. To be honest, neither of these last two issues concern me at all since I would simply get my phone exchanged if it had the buttons issue and I would not likely scratch mine as I tend to be extremely careful with my phones and I always keep them in a case that protects them.






THE VERDICT

By now you must be wondering if I will even get the new iPhone 4 when it launches in Canada. The answer is: ABSOLUTELY! - It turns out that the antenna issue has been around since the first version of the iPhone came out! Take a look at the video below and pay attention to the date in which it was posted.




A lot of people don't realize that the reception issue is non iPhone specific and that even Android phones exhibit similar reception problems when held a certain way. I am also not too worried about these problems as I plan to buy a bumper case and I never really hold my phone in a way that would trigger such problem. I am in no way denying that there are issues with the iPhone 4 but to me the benefits greatly outweigh the problems. Please feel free to leave a comment below with your views on Apple's iPhone 4.

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

iOS 4 in 10 minutes - TiPb video quick-start guide

For those of you who just installed the new iOS4 yesterday, here are some tips from our friends over at The iPhone Blog (TiPb) to make the most of it - I really enjoyed this video because it is concise and thorough. I hope you find it helpful too!



Happy iPhone 4 day tomorrow to all our visitors from the US! We will join in the fun next month - I CANNOT WAIT!

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Saturday, June 19, 2010

I AM DA CONGEE MAN!

My friends and I were bored at work so we decided to test the iPhone's video recording and we came up with this hysterical sketch in which a man orders congee at a restaurant. Be prepared for some crazy accents hahaha.

CREDITS:

Michelle Angeles as the sexy waitress
Kevin Blacklock - hysterical laughter and cinematography
Angel Clemente - Da Congee Man

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Help Me Choose A Twitter Name :)




The poll is now closed. Thanks a lot to those who took the time to vote. @pixelatedmind it is!

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Friday, June 18, 2010

Toy Story 3 - The Toys Are Certainly Back!


When I heard that Pixar and Disney were adding a new volume to the Toy Story saga I wasn't overly excited. I thought the days of Woody and Buzz Lightyear were numbered and that newer and better things had come along since then. Boy was I wrong...

The magic of Pixar becomes evident right from the previews where a short animated film called Day & Night is featured. The message behind Day & Night is that we always fear those who are different from us. This may be a simple lesson but it is nonetheless an extremely true and often forgotten one. You must watch this short film to appreciate the true beauty behind it. It is amazing!

In Toy Story 3, all the classic characters are back only to find that Andy, the boy they always loved and admired, is all grown up and ready to go to college. The toys are scared of being abandoned by Andy and for that reason they embark on a crazy adventure that will have you laughing, shouting, holding on to your seat and crying... yes... I said it... I went to watch the movie with my best male friend and we both had tears running down our face by the end of the movie. I don't mean to be an extremist but Toy Story 3 is one of the best movies I have ever seen - and no... I'm not only talking about animated or 3-D movies.


A few new characters are also introduced in this new adventure. Amongst them are Ken and Barbie, who quickly became two of my personal favourites (no one beats the alien triplets though!). Their bubbly and over the top ditzy personality and romance is hysterical. I must say that I still can't be certain that Ken is attracted to Barbie because of her body and personality... I think it may have more to do with her clothes *hint hint* :)



I hope you have watched the previous Toy Story movies by now, but if you haven't... go get a copy of them here:


And don't forget to watch the newest one! You won't regret it!

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