Macaroons, Fashion, and Rebecca Minkoff…

Holt Renfew Calgary, recently hosted a personal appearance by fashion designer, Rebecca Minkoff. The event featured Minkoff’s Spring/Summer 2014 Collection. Fans were able to browse the trunk show, interact with Minkoff, and get their ‘Rebecca Minkoff’ handbag autographed. I had the opportunity to interview Rebecca about her colourful collection.

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The C Word… (no, not that one)

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So, I was having a heart to heart with one of my closest friends a few evenings ago… She has recently ended a bad relationship, and during our 90 minute dinner (cosmopolitan in hand), I listened to her recall the final days of their tenuous relationship.

As I sipped on my pink bliss, I couldn’t help but feel a sigh of relief that I wasn’t in her shoes. Some of her details were enough to leave you second guessing committing to any guy (no matter how tall, dark, and handsome they might be dahling).

As my friend recounted her sad story, she would stop every so often to heed a warning, “just be careful, all guys say they won’t cheat, but end up doing just that anyway.” Of course I would just nod my head and murmur “yeah,” she was tainted by her apathetic ex after all.

We eventually parted ways, and as I hugged my friend goodbye, I uttered the reassuring words that every girl says to comfort her heartbroken friend,“it’s his loss.. You were too good for him anyway.” 

That night as I was falling asleep, I hoped that I would never have to sit on my friend’s side of the table, recounting my misery to a friend, as they dutifully nodded and gasped at the appropriate times.

I have always thought that there were better things to do with my time, than to fight over a man!

I couldn’t fathom how my intelligent friend let herself spiral into such turmoil… I mean why don’t all women just walk away after that first sinking feeling (easier said than done, yes). Perhaps, they don’t walk, because that one hopeless feeling isn’t worth destroying, what many women think is their one shot at everlasting love. Perhaps.

I truly respect all the Hilarys, Humas, and Elizabeths of this world!

The Marilyns, Monicas, and Rielles will have their day…

The Mindy Project: Tackling Diversity In TV?

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Mindy Kaling, also known as Vera Mindy Chokalingam is a famous comedian/writer/actress. Kaling rose to fame during her role on The Office, where she played Kelly Kapoor for eight seasons.

In 2012, Fox gave Kaling her own sitcom, titled The Mindy Project. On the half-hour comedy, Kaling plays a 30-something-year-old, OB/GYN (no surprise there), living in New York City. The premise of the show features the various licentious love exploits and mishaps that Kaling’s character faces. Since the inception of The Mindy Project, Kaling has taken quite a bit of heat for not embracing diversity and featuring more people of colour on her show, especially as love interests. If one watches all episodes of the show, every one of Kaling’s love interests have been Caucasian.

Now, I have never really been a huge Mindy Kaling fan however, I will admit that she is extremely talented at her craft. When The Mindy Project was announced, I was rather thrilled that “Hollywood” was finally embracing an Indian woman, by giving Kaling her OWN show! Being a young woman of colour myself, I was excited to see what Kaling would add to the TV world in terms of diversity and how she would represent Indian people who are an extremely marginalized group on western TV.  After watching all episodes that have aired, diversity is something that one would find hard to associate with The Mindy Project. 

On March 11th, 2014 Kaling attended a panel at SXSW, and was posed a question about the lack of diversity on her show, to which Kaling proudly responded, “I’m a f*cking Indian woman who has her own f*cking network television show, okay?” Surely she could have put it more eloquently…

As someone who is a minority, and that has been given the privilege of having a voice in a rather one-coloured industry, I don’t think that is a good enough response, Ms Kaling. Should she not be using that scope to promote multiculturalism, and change how people of colour are perceived in Hollywood.  However, maybe we all need to give Kaling the benefit of the doubt. It’s tough to hold onto your own show in today’s fast-paced television industry, where all the networks only seem to care about ratings over quality/content. Would a TV show with more ethnic diversity really have made it past season 1? Kaling is just playing it safe. At the end of the day, she needs to keep her job, and it seems the only way to do that is to mimic the casting of all the other shows on TV, but don’t forget to cast that one stereotypical person of colour (usually African American)… just for laughs.

*UPDATE* Perhaps due to media pressure/speculation surrounding Kaling’s lack of multicultural representation on her show she featured a non-white love interest and addressed her Indian heritage towards the end of Season 4.

Oscar Pistorius Trial: Day One and Day Two

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The trial of the year has commenced in Pretoria, South Africa, and has transfixed the world. South African Olympian, Oscar Pistorius is accused of murdering his model girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp on 14 February, 2013.

On Day One of the trial, Pistorius pleaded not guilty to all of the charges that he faces. The state witness, Michelle Burger took her seat in the witness stand. Burger and her husband live in a gated community adjacent to Pistorius’ home. Burger recalls that “you could hear blood curdling screams” coming from Pistorius’ home at 3am on the night of February 14. Burger claims that she heard the screams before hearing four gunshots, “Bang, bang… bang bang,” described Burger in an anxious voice.

The state prosecutors allege that the murder of Steenkamp was premeditated, after the couple had an argument. However, a written statement from Pistorius says, “that there was no argument…. It could not be further from the truth.” Pistorius believed his life was in danger, and that he had to protect himself, and Reeva.

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On Day Two, Burger was cross-examined by the defense lawyers, until proceedings adjourned because Burger’s face was shown on a South African TV Station. When the questioning recommenced, Burger recalls that she heard a man scream for help before the gunshots. Defense Lawyer, Barry Roux then asked Burger why a man would shout for help if he was trying to kill his girlfriend. To which Burger responded that perhaps Pistorius was trying to cover his tracks. Burger finished her testimony in tears.

Two more neighbours, Estelle Van Der Merwe, and Charl Peter Johnson (Michelle Burger’s husband) also took the stand on Day 2. Both witness accounts mimicked that of Burger’s. All three witnesses heard a woman’s terrifying screams, and four sounds, that can best be described as bang…bang.

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On Tuesday, Reeva’s mother June Steenkamp gave an interview to NBC, in which she said that she has not passed judgement on Pistorius. “It’s actually important to forgive him, for me, because I don’t want to live with bitterness in my life.” 

Oscar Pistorius faces a life sentence, if convicted of premeditated murder.

Interview with Nicholas Bonkowsky

I recently got the opportunity to interview an International Badminton Player.

Nicholas Bonkowsky is a highly motivated, and passionate athlete, who embarked upon his badminton journey seven years ago.

His determination, courage, and passion resonates throughout the interview. He tells an inspirational story about how hard work is the key to all success in life, and lives by the proverbial saying, where there’s a will, there’s a way!

Reflections of 2013…

As I sit here reflecting on 2013, there are many memories, and whirlwind adventures that bring a smile to my face. I experienced a lot last year… There were some lows, but more highs!

I am grateful for all the people that came into my life, and for all the lessons that I learnt. I will cherish the wonderful moments that I got to spend with my family last year, especially with my grandmother!

After graduation, like many new grads, I was faced with the “what now” dilemma, and rejection was a big fear that I had to face last year.

In 2013, one person in particular made me realize that dreams are worth pursuing, and giving it your everything! It saddens me to realize that somewhere along the line I stopped yearning to follow my dream. However 2014 is a clean slate… And I feel highly motivated to continue my journey that I embarked upon yesteryear.

Although I am excited to embark upon this ride, and embrace the uncertainty in 2014, this year will also bring moments that I know are going to be so tough to face. When I was 15 years old, I discovered a quote, and it has stayed with me ever since…

Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some stay for a while and leave footprints on our hearts and we are never ever the same. – Flavia Weedn 

I will always remember the wonderful moments of 2013.

Here’s to a fantastic year ahead filled with many more incredible memories!