Music to jam to

I’m about two decades late, but I’ve been enjoying this song too much lately to not feature it. No, it is not a continuation to my previous post on why the 90s were the best, but it does go to show that dance music was definitely alive and kicking. (You can always count on the Jacksons for that.)

Another day, another case of leaked celebrity photos

So, in case you haven’t heard the news as of late, there’s been another breach of privacy regarding celebs and their not-to-be-shared-with-the-public images. Once more, it involves iCloud, where these photos were allegedly hacked from and splashed all over  4chan.

Just for the record, can I just point out how ominous the Cloud actually sounds?  There’s something very unsettling about the fact that all your info is drifting around somewhere in the open internet air (interspace?), and the fact that the Cloud could come down any day.

Indeed, this is a problem that has happened before, in various other shapes and forms. And it probably will happen more and often, given the monstrosity of the internet and the ability to breach practically anything now. I have a few thoughts this: first, I obviously don’t agree with the fact that stealing of these photos was ok. They were stolen from someone’s private space of the iCloud (oOoOoOh), and that it is really criminal to do such a thing. I also agree with the fact these women, whom I shall not bother to name, should be allowed to take whatever kind of photos they please… In the nude or not, and without fear of having them publicized.

However.

My agreements end there. They have my pity, but to only a certain extent. I know there’s all this stuff about going on about “victim blaming”, and I’m not trying to do that here… From a feminist stand point, I agree that it’s wrong to point the finger and say, “it’s your fault! If you don’t want nude pics splashed around on the net, don’t take them!” Because, how is it their fault that some jerks hacked into their accounts?

But the one thing that comes to my mind is that it is not just the hacker’s responsibility to not exploit celebrities private items, but it’s a celebrity’s responsibility as well. (Not to mention our own responsibility to not look at them.)

Obviously, these celebs didn’t want this sort of thing to happen (or so I’d like to think). But they are, in fact, celebrities. Recognizable faces. And because of their status, they need to start being more careful about what they backup on the Cloud, because nowadays, there will always be the off-chance that it could get out into the open.

I mean, let’s face it. The internet can be a dodgy place. Nothing is sacred anymore. Even on the iCloud, a supposedly “safe” haven for online backup. Nowadays, people are becoming more and more experienced in how to breach these places, and it’s getting trickier all the time to keep people’s private info protected.

It’s terrible to feel that nothing that we store online is safe anymore. But it seems as if that’s the kind of world we’re coming to; and we’re just going to have to do better in protecting our stuff.

Again, if they want to take nude photos of themselves to share personally with loved ones, then by all means. I’m sure lots of people out there have stored nude pics on the Cloud and don’t have to worry about them getting out. But because they are “famous”, that gives others more of an opportunity to be able to exploit them. They should to start taking better measures to prevent it from happening again (re: storing them in a folder on their desktop instead, perhaps?).

I’ve heard a lot of things about how violating this scandal is for the women involved, as much as it is for a woman being sexually harassed while walking down the street (that’s just an example I’m using). And it’s very true. No one deserves that sort of humiliation, and no one should have to go through it.

Never the less, if you’re famous, there’s always going to be someone out there looking to profit off something potentially scandalous. We may not like having to put up more safeguards online (like changing passwords every few weeks) anymore than we like having to worry about getting attacked if we’re walking alone somewhere, but unless something drastic can be done to prevent hacking, then this is the kind of thing that we’re going to have to do.

The lesson here? Storing nude photos in an online backup drive is never a good idea.

The other lesson? Trust the Cloud at you’re own risk.

Throwback Thursday: My reasons why the ’90s were the best

You know, it’s starting to hit me that the ’90s were 20 years ago. I realized this when I learned that Jonathan Taylor Thomas turned thirty-three last week. Crazy, right? (And I thought he would be a twelve year old forever.) It seems as if ’90s have made a comeback these last few years; whether it be in fashion, pop culture or just plain old reminiscing. And let’s face it, every generation it seems has had it’s nostalgia for previous decades. But now, they have finally called.

As a former ’90s kid, I think that the they were pretty great. Am I biased? Most likely. In the days before the internet really really kicked off, there were a lot of things that defined this decade, and made it pretty spectacular. Here are my reasons why the 1990s made for the last great decade of the 20th century.

1. Better rap music. That’s right. I’m not generally a fan of a rap, but I’m a fan of ’90s rap. (Or could it be considered hip hop?) Mainly because it was catchy, and oh so easy to remember the lyrics. (for another example, go here)

2. Better music in general.

Hey look! It’s the 20th anniversary of the Little Rascals, FYI.

3. The quality of kids movies. If the 80s were the height of teen movies, I’d say the ’90s filled that role for younger kids pretty darn well. Just to name a few… Hook, Home Alone, The Lion King, Little Rascals, the Babysitter’s Club, Camp Nowhere, Now and Then, the Sandlot, Heavy Weights–man, we got some good movies. They had good story lines, they were fulfilling, often hilarious, and so very ’90s. And ok, the teen movies such as Clueless/10 Things I Hate About You/whatever first comes to mind aren’t that bad. Let’s just say they reached their prime.

4. Some stand out fashion trends. Ok, since I was technically a kid in those days, I didn’t have defined sense of style… Unless it was something like this, or anything related to the Spice Girls. Like that time when I happily wore my first pair of platform shoes. (Only to never put them on again.) However, my older sister kept up with the trends, so whatever she wore, was most likely in style. The bold patterns and bright colours were a must; and before haute couture became the rage, it was all about keeping things cool and comfortable, and often times, grungy.  Interestingly enough, there was a big ’70s revival going on in the ’90s, like with bell bottomed jeans, tinted sun glasses, and of course, the aformentioned platform shoes. That’s not to say there weren’t bad fashion moments, but let’s just say they won’t be returning anytime soon. I hope…

5. The slang. “Dude.” “Psyche!” “Wuzaaaaaa????” “This is the ‘90s!”  Especially the last one. It’s the only one you can say that sounds proper.

6. Kick ass leading ladies. If you’re into the supernatural, Xena, Buffy, the Charmed Ladies, Sabrina, Sailor Moon… Can you say Girl Power?

7. The endless book series for kids/teens. My favourite series would have had to be the Babysitter’s Club, the Black Cat Club and Goosebumps, and maybe even the odd Bailey School Kids book. Also, remember Animorphs??! There were some really great series available to fill our imaginations.

8. The tv shows. I can’t say much for the adult stuff (since I never watched any), but I can’t say enough of the tv for the younger crowd!  Are you Afraid of the Dark, Animaniacs, Rugrats, Power Rangers, Fresh Prince, Ninja Turtles… Just to name a few. Is it just me, or has the whole idea range for kids shows regressed since then? It’s since gotten a lot less bad ass, and more… *insert something here.*

9. We managed to survive days on end without a piece of technology glued to our sides. Sure, we had cellphones, but they were just cellphones. No internet on them, no camera, no games, just a mere phone to call somebody with. Can you imagine?

10. Totally hip dance trends. If you didn’t know the Macarena, then who the hell were you???

11. Sodalicious. ‘Nuff said.

12. It was the last decade for dangerous playground equipment, which they’ve since traded for boring plastic playground structures. I think they’ve phased out metal slides everywhere in my neck of the woods.

13. Cassette tapes. Insert, rewind, play. Easy.

14. WALKMAN’S. Aka, the old person’s iPod!

15. YTV’s Uh Oh, just because. When else would you get a game show for kids that would both challenge your mind and get you slimed? Ew. (I guess the same could go for It’s Alive! which ran earlier on YTV.)

 But really: I’ve got to hand it to the ’90s for the bizarre humour that kept us entertained throughout the years. Strange as it was, it was awesome.

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 Images from herehere, here.

25 things to keep in mind for when I turn twenty-five

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My initial reaction to turning 25.

I’m turning twenty-five in approximately 10 days. That’s a quarter of a century old.

 Hard to believe? Definitely. The idea of being half way through my twenties doesn’t scare me (yet), but it has made me reevaluate things as to where I want to go in life, and how far I’ve come since turning twenty. The thought that does scare me a bit is not knowing where I’ll be in another five years. Will I have succeeded? Will I be living my dream life? What’s going on, future me??? Sorry, I’m getting a little ahead of myself (no pun intended). I don’t really want to know, but I do want to experience it. I’ve learned a lot since turning twenty, and I still have plenty more to learn.

The list below is a compilation of reminders for me for when I reach the other leg of my 20s.

  1. Change is scary, but essential. Embrace the new, and go with it!
  2. Don’t worry about what others are doing with their lives and careers. No one is the same, for we are all going down different roads.
  3. Go after what you want.
  4. It’s ok to be scared, but don’t let it take over what you want out of life.
  5. Bright lipstick is a great pick-me-up, even on the days when nothing is happening.
  6. You can’t always expect the unexpected, so when the unexpected comes, take a few deep breaths.
  7. Develop a thick skin; accept constructive criticism, but let negativity roll off your shoulders like water on the wings of a swan.
  8. Always have something home-baked on hand.
  9. Typing is convenient, but handwriting is lovelier.
  10. Set aside time for yourself to do whatever you want.
  11. Keep in touch with old friends.
  12. Speaking up doesn’t make you bitchy. It makes you boss!
  13. Never take what you have for granted.
  14. What you know now is part of your ever-growing wisdom.
  15. Some things take time, and that’s ok.
  16. Push yourself just a bit more.
  17. More often than not, a phone call is better than email.
  18. Get it done, whatever it is.
  19. Get to bed earlier.
  20. When you’re good to your body, it will be good to you.
  21. Do nice things for your parents.
  22. As much as you need a good laugh, a good cry helps too.
  23. Everything will work out just fine.
  24. Trust your gut.
  25. And finally… Carpe diem. Always.

Books I’m reading this month

Ah, books. When I’m not absorbed in teen fantasy/sci-fi fiction (ahem ahem), I’m usually drawn to the period piece/historical novels, fictitious or not. And this month, it’s both! I don’t know about you, but I tend to rotate between books; for some reason, I can’t just read one, I have to have another (or more) on the go. Right now, I’m reading The Perfect Summer: England 1911, Just Before the Storm by Juliet Nicholson, as well as The Chaperone, by Laura Moriarty.  Interestingly enough, they each take place in the times between the First World War, before and after.

The Perfect Summer takes place in, you guessed it, during the summer of 1911. It takes on the view points from a bunch of different figures living in England at the time–for instance, a younger, pre-PM Winston Churchill, and goes on to show how everything was to lead up to the end of the so-called Age of Innocence. The atmosphere at the time was fairly content (at least among the upper class), but it was also getting stagnant and heavy, and people seemed to be getting restless. This is definitely non-fiction and historically based, which I’m liking. I never really considered what England was like during that time (even pre-Titanic), when everything seemed so stable and at ease. I’m still making my way through the book–I find it a bit difficult to keep up with the names after I pick it up again, however the book reads like a good story, and Nicolson does a great job in helping the reader visualize the period.

And the second! I got this book earlier this week; it’s mostly fiction, but I’m interested to see how the author puts a spin in on the younger years of the silent screen star Louise Brooks. In terms of summary, a woman named Cora Carlisle offers to travel to New York from Kansas with the fifteen year old Brooks one summer, who was invited to a join prestigious dance school. I’m still at the beginning of the book, but I’m intrigued already!

What book (or books) are you reading this month?

First image from here, second from here. The gif at the top is of Jean Harlow and Marie Dressler in the movie, Dinner at Eight. (You can watch the clip here.)

Summer-to-do list: an update

Two weeks into September and I still hadn’t yet got around to doing a summer update… Til today.

The end result was that I managed to get through most of my goals, much to my surprise (wahoo!). Something that I never seem to do when I make  a point of list-making. I baked lots (see below), used lots of fruit (see below, and saw lots of things; the jogging thing has been just, ‘eh’. I didn’t end up colouring my hair, because it was too risky (that, and I chickened out). For photos, I mainly used my SLR, but other times I got lazy and just used my phone. The times that I made it to the beach this summer, I forgot the memory card for my camera, and forgot my phone. Waah!

SONY DSCBest summer scones. Ever.

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It rained.

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A lot.

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Also took a few pics of this guy. Don’t know what happened in this shot, but I thought it was neat.

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Here’s a better one.

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And in other exciting developments this summer, my family and I welcomed a new addition!

Now it’s September, and it’s feeling like autumn today (despite it feeling like summer just a few days ago). However, I can’t say I’m not looking forward to the change of seasons, because I like cool (though not freezing) weather. Plus, the changing of the leaves are lovely, and everything’s nice and colourful.

Also, the nostalgic feels are crazy around this month! Maybe it’s the whole back-to-school gig… Or just the fact that the holidays  are up and coming, and stores are already jumping on the festive bandwagon. To which I shrug and say, ‘maybe it’s still too early, but oh well!’ There are lots of things to look forward to this season… Just so long as that doesn’t include an ice storm.