2014 NYC Pride Week: We are One

2014 NYC Pride: We are One
2014 NYC Pride: We are One
“Live your life, live your life, let the love inside. It’s your life, it’s your life, your beauty’s deep inside – inside you. Don’t let them bring you down,” (Chris Brown, 2011).What a perfect song to kick off the 2014 NYC Pride Week. One of the most highly anticipated events that accumulates incredible attention visitors, worldwide. That said, since your writer attended Pride last year and had so much fun, it seemed right to do it again in 2014.This year’s theme was “we are one,” and you know what?Yes, we are.
Since NYC legalized same sex marriage a couple of years ago, things are becoming much easier for the struggle in equal rights, this year’s Pride Week was all about celebration- and let’s just say we couldn’t get enough from June 24-29th.Family night was the beginning followed by the Rally on June 27th, and Click Fridays. June 28th was a treat for everyone- VIP Rooftop for the fellas and the Teaze for the ladies – oh yeah and let’s not forget the We Party event happening, as well.

 The next and last day was June 29th and it was a barrel full of great things simultaneously occurring including Pride Fest, the March and of course the finale, dance on the Pier.

This year’s Grand Marshals were: Laverne Cox, Rea Carey, and Jonathan Groff. If you missed it– so sad to hear, however, here are some refresher images for your enjoyment.

A few hours later spent walking down Fifth avenue all the way downtown, it was time to head down to Pier 26, at Hudson River Park for the final show.Similar to last year, the weather was perfect, everyone’s spirit was in sync and it was awesome. In 2013, Deborah Cox headlined for Cher and this year Demi Lovato gave a great performance after DJ Grind warmed up the crowd.Still hungry for images? Check these out from Demi’s performance. Is envy and/or any regret of not attending hitting you yet?
In conclusion, it was beyond great to be part of this event yet again. It’s hard enough as human beings traveling through this world trying to figure out who we are as individuals as we dive into this convoluted expedition called life – all with out an instruction manual, by the way.
The only thing we should be chasing is pure freedom in finding internal happiness to be who we are – whether you’re straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender and love is another example of true fulfillment. It’s all about connecting and accepting diversity, regardless of your gender and/or race preference – because, we are one – and this is the true meaning of pride. On that note, we will see you next year.
By: LA
 Twitter: @Lauraslifeonink

2014 BNP Paribas Showdown: Racketeering permitted

world tennis day 2014 257x300 BNP Paribas Showdown: Racketeering Permitted

It’s always an awesome feeling when a random Monday night ends with watching phenomenal tennis superstars battle it out in Madison Square Garden. That’s right – we returned back to the Garden and it was everything we asked for -plus more.

Okay here is the quick rundown for those who are not familiar with the BNP Paribas Showdown. It’s exactly that- a showdown between the world’s best Tennis players and this time we were lucky enough to attend the event during World Tennis Day. That said let’s get on with the Showdown.

Similar to almost any event, there is usually a headliner and this time around was a very surprising match between two very different sets of brothers: Bob and Mike Bryan playing against John and Patrick McEnroe.As the players take on the court it is business time – well sort of.

If you are a tennis enthusiast as your writer, we all know tennis is fun and if John McEnroe decides to flip out – well let’s say it adds a little special spice to the game. John had spoken out a few months ago on his stance on playing doubles, however, it was great to see him let loose and have fun. Though we are certain guests kind of hoped he would lose his edge during this match and sadly he didn’t we were ecstatic to watch him and Patrick take on the Bryan Brothers – even though Bob and Mike won with a score of 8-3 – and of course celebrated with their signature chest bumps.

Moments later the Garden erupts in an uproar as the six time Grand Slam winner -Novak Djokovic marches out to take on Olympic Gold Medalist and 2013 Wimbledon champion – Andy Murray. As this is the first time for both players to take on the venue, they both did exceptionally well.

In the middle of the matches, both players highlighted their light-hearted sense of humor. Djokovic decided to drop down and do some push-ups, they both switched playing one another and were replaced by different players including Marion Bartoli. Of course a showdown is not complete without the two players taking selfies of another -the whole thing was a great way to show their playful side.

The crowd cheered for Andy Murray for the win, however, Djokovic beat him fair and square with a score of 6-3, 7-6 (2) – not bad at all.

Overall it was another great experience at the Garden and as usual Tennis is a beautiful sport that makes us anticipate the warmer climate more, so it can receive the attention it deserves. If you are Tennis fan and/or are visiting New York around this time, we highly recommend attending this event in the future. Now, all we can do is begin the countdown for other great Tennis events throughout the season.

By: Laura Artis

T: @Lauraslifeonink

Acqua Santa

Acqua Santa 300x201 Acqua Santa

I wish I lived in Brooklyn equipped with a lump sum of loot and sufficient time to test out every hidden nook and cranny downtown. However, until then this time around it was a pleasure to meet with my mom and a few other friends at Acqua Santa, translated in Italian it means “Holy Water.”

If the ambiance of the indoor patio setting surrounded by an abundance of lights and greenery does not hold your attention, then I would hope the food and service would suffice.

Once again the greedy button begged to order everything on the plate, but we shared a couple of appetizers including the Insalate Frutti Di Mare (aka seafood remix) smothered in delicious raspberry vinaigrette, and Calamaretti in Padela.  Additional orders included the Salmone in Salsa D’arancia; which sounds and tastes like an edible piece of delicious poetry.

The service is great and you feel as if you are eating dinner somewhere in Europe thanks to the soft lounge music echoing from the wall speakers. After dinner, we indulge in a couple of glasses of red wine and sadly it is time to go as the place picks up speed.

P.s. I forgot to mention the brunch and if  subsequent weekends are kind enough with miscellaneous social events, this would be another reason for a double dosage of Acqua Santa.

Twitter: @Lauraslifeoink.

Westminster Dog Show: Woof woof

And the winner is… (drum roll)

Banana Joe 200x300 2013 Westminster Dog Show

2013 Winner.

Banana Joe! The Affenpinscher  is chosen as 2013′s Best in Show, an exciting annual event where visitors flock to Madison Square Garden to share their love for dogs and cheer on their favorite pooch to victory. However, aside from the preliminaries and other events simultaneously occurring within the two days, the finale is the main attraction where the Best in Show is selected.

 Since 1877, dogs of varying sizes and breeds have taken their place to compete to become the Best in Show. When you have such an abundant array of choices to select from, it is fair to say that all contestants should be ready to put their best paw forward. Day one at the Garden is quite a sight to see as an influx of people jam against the ticket counters while others collect programs at the entrance and make their way up the many escalators to their seats. As we settle in, a surge of excitement surrounds the venue and immediately after we hear the National Anthem- it’s showtime. The dogs wobble in and take their places by their appropriate platforms and the crowd erupts in an uproar.

 There are seven categories and one winner is chosen from each and later progresses to the next day. Most, if not all, annual canine competition events lead up to this moment considered the Grammies- no Oscars, perhaps even bigger, the Olympics of Dog Events. Each participant is judged by appearance, gait (also referred to as movement), attitude and temperament, and obedience. Additional criteria include height, weight, appearance of coat, overall hygiene and maintenance and the color of the eyes and ears and the shape in relation to the specific breed and how well they “stack.”

Stacking is performed when the dog appears before the judge and the forelegs are aligned in a ninety degree position along its withers; as if proclaiming, “I am showing you my best.” On the first day, four groups take the stage and below are the winners in order and relation to their category, breed, and respectful names.

Hound- American Foxhound: “Pandora’s Box.”

2013 hound winner1 300x199 2013 Westminster Dog Show

Toy group- Affenpinscher: “Banana Joe.”

2013 toy winner 300x199 2013 Westminster Dog Show

Non- Sporting- Bichons Frises: “Vogelflight’s Honor to pillow talk.”

2013 nonsporting winner 300x199 2013 Westminster Dog Show

Non Sporting Winner

Herding-Old English Sheepdog: “Bugapoos Picture Perfect.”

2013 herding winner 300x199 2013 Westminster Dog Show

Herding Winner

The second day, the Garden doubles with incoming guests as we await the selected winners from the last three divisions of the competition. After the favorites are selected from the remainder of the list mentioned below, all participants make their way to the sidelines, the lights dim, spotlights rotate around the crowd, and loud cheers pierce from the crowd.

Sporting- Pointer(Germain Wirehaired): “ Mt. View’s Ripsnortersilvercharm.”

2013 sporting winner 300x217 2013 Westminster Dog Show

Sporting Winner

Working- Portugese Waterdog: “Clairecreek Impression De Matisse.”

2013 working winner 1 300x199 2013 Westminster Dog Show

Working Winner

Terrier- Fox terrier(Smooth): “Slyfox Sneaks a Peek.”

2013 terrier winner 300x199 2013 Westminster Dog Show

Terrier Winner

 In the far end a wave starts perhaps to cure boredom or to ignite the anticipation of the new winner. A round of applause smashes through as the judges step onto the middle of the floor.

 This is it, one lucky pup is about to meet their destiny!

 After a few nail biting moments, the officials walk alongside the chosen few and award a new winner, Banana Joe, the Affenpinscher from the toy group. Cameras flicker with strobe-like flashes, applause rumbles around as the winner poses for his paparazzi next to its owner.  Overall, it was a great experience, and if you are visiting New York around February this time next year, try and get tickets and be part of the magic.

Twitter: @Lauraslifeonink

Kick Ass Art: Jason Borbay.

Sutton Place at Twilight Painting by Borbay 300x297 Jason Borbay presents: Kick Ass Art Exhibit

Monet, Picasso, Manet, Van Gogh, are examples of great artists, and once you think you know them all, along comes Jason Borbay. A native New Yorker, Jason is the newest artist in town creating buzz and earning infinite rounds of applause and recognition in worldwide publications for his amazing artwork. It was an awesome moment to catch up with Jason at his Kick Ass Art Exhibit held at Wix Lounge in Union Square. Echoes of laughter, excitement, endless conversations pierced through the elevator while ascending to the appropriate floor.

The doors swing open and every square inch of the walls are covered with Jason’s creations and his dear supporters. So here is the scoop in case you are wondering what makes Jason stand out from the rest. Jason’s use of the canvas is unlike anything ever manifested while incorporating collages and embeds exquisite detail in each piece. However, pay attention and do not be afraid to scrutinize each lapel, set of lips, ears, clothing, in each piece because it’s incredible how he utilizes cool objects for each item.

Jason is known for painting famous people in the spotlight include Uma Thurman, Johnny Depp, Justin Theroux, Jay Z, Morgan Freeman and much more and he is a master at his craft. During the exhibit, spending an abundance of time viewing one portrait before moving on to the next is common. His fan base gathers around to wait for their turn to experience the showcase and appreciate the work via different vantage points.

Additionally, to the naked eye it seems easy as pie, however, Jason confesses some of his work consumes and ranges from eight days to an entire month for the finished product. Jason has been featured in Forbes, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and remains humble while mingling with guests that continue to pour in masses. It is highly recommended to experience Jason’s work in person if possible and for more information on his upcoming appearances check out his website: http://www.borbay.com/

Twitter: @Lauraslifeonink

 

Sayonara Football Season

Hello Universe,

O.k., first, a big Congratulations to the Baltimore Ravens for winning SuperBowl 2013. Now, let us get down to the nitty gritty, I permanently checked out and promised to boycott this year’s SuperBowl if the Giant’s did not win, however, aside from  watching Soccer, Tennis, Golf  the NYC Marathon, Football revs up the engines unlike any other sport. However, since it is SuperBowl, the end of an era until the pre-season begins once in about six months, the peer pressure gained momentum as the day started. Therefore, it was only fair to join my friends at Bourbon Street, NYC aside from staying home  to watch the Ravens vs 49’ers battle it out for the Lombardi Trophy.

The game goes well and Beyonce blasts through her performance during the Half-time Show without any wardrobe malfunctions (phew), it is still a sad moment when Football season ends. The energy is great and even though the crowd goes crazy over the temporary “lights off” situation it was a great decision to come out in the frigid cold to celebrate the long journey from the beginning of the season to this moment. As the clock counts down to the last play, patrons, and avid fans erupt in total happiness and some disappointments but just like anything in life, the Ravens gave it their all.

Therefore, the round of applause goes to Bourbon Street, NYC for keeping the peace, providing epic and endless entertainment and reminding us that regardless of whatever team you choose, you can always count on NYC to make any night, awesome.

By: Laura M. Artis.

Working Women

Joyce Theater
175 8th Avenue (on Eighteenth Street)
{212} 691-9740
Website: http://www.joyce.org

 

 

The Joyce Theater, a cozy, and intimate venue snuggled on eighteenth street on the west end of Manhattan is the setting to experience the production and magic of dance titled Working Women and as we nestle into our seats and browse through the Playbill, the vicinity quiets down and the crimson red curtains rise. The projector beams images onto the backstage and a short skit begins with two women carrying a stage prop across Manhattan on the way to the theater.

Moments later the two women emerge from backstage onto the main stage and the audience greets them with echoes of applause. The two performers set the tone for the remainder of the show by kicking off with an action packed, energetic, fun, and comical, dancing performance.

Life, love, art, inspiration, and free movement interpreted through the production of eight dance companies including and not limited to the Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company, Loni Landon Projects, and Janis Brenner and Dancers and many others are the motivation behind this incredible collaboration.

Dancing is a freeing experience and regardless of its sub-categorization to modern, contemporary, tap, jazz, ballet and or other combinations forms a bonding experience for everyone and feeds the desire to bring people together. Additionally, it livens up the soul while celebrating and liberating the sensation of expression without boundaries.

At the end of the show, the choreographers met on stage to answer questions from guests and shared the journey leading up to this moment and the dance industry as well. Working Women is a great, nonstop, fun-filled show and a must see if you have a chance to experience it in the future.

By: Laura M. Artis