Monday, June 25, 2012

Starry Night in San Francisco

Art by Jason Gorelick

I shared on Facebook and Google+ this morning a YouTube video which featured Vincent van Gogh's Starry Night depicted in dominoes (work by Flippy Cat).  My friend Amy's nephew, Jason Gorelick, saw my posting and sent me his rendering of Starry Night, done San Francisco style.  I liked the art so much it's now the cover photo on my Facebook profile.

Artistic talent runs in Jason's family. His little sister Rachel and mom Rika have featured their lovely works of art on Rika's Facebook page.  This young man possesses many other talents well beyond his years.  

Here's the video which got this all started:

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sunday sunset in the Sunset

This past weekend wasn't shrouded in fog. I took this picture at about 7 PM today.  San Francisco, in fog or sun is breathtakingly beautiful.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Sarah Polley / The Tragically Hip

Continuing on my trend of writing about people you may or may not know about - this entry features a film actor and a rock group from Canada.  There's a lot about Canadians we Americans don't know about, so this is my small part in trying to change that.

First up, actor/director/singer Sarah Polley.  Not yet even 35, she's directed and acted in 2 outstanding films.  The first film I saw her in was "The Sweet Hereafter" (1997), directed by Atom Egoyan, one of Canada's best.  Ms. Polley's directorial debut came in 2006, "Away From Her", starring Gordon Pinsent and Julie Christie.  For me, this is one of the best films on Alzheimer's effect on loved ones.  Ms. Christie received an Academy Award nomination for her performance.  In Canada, the film won 7 Genie Awards (nominated for 8).

In "The Sweet Hereafter", we see the aftermath of a tragic school bus accident in which most of the students are killed.  Sarah's character, Nicole, is one of the few survivors.  Nicole was an aspiring country music singer before the accident.  One of the songs Nicole sings is "Courage".  Here is a video featuring clips of the film and Sarah Polley's vocals:

Next up, the artists who sang and wrote the song (full title is "Courage (for Hugh MacLennan)") are one of Canada's immensely popular rock groups, The Tragically Hip.  My first exposure to the band was their 1998 song "Poets", which is one of two of their songs that have become personal favorites.

Here is The Hip's original version of "Courage":

And to close out, here's the video for "Poets":

***UPDATE: August 10, 2016***
While replaying my favorite Tragically Hip song "Ahead by a Century", I learned from recent YouTube comments that lead singer Gord Downie has been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer.
Gord and the rest of the boys (Rob, Gord Sinclair, Johnny and Paul) are currently on their Man-Machine-Poem summer tour in Ontario. Dates and locations can be found on their website.

I send thoughts and best wishes to Gord. His songs will always hold a special place in my heart.

Friday, June 08, 2012

Graduation Anniversary

For the past few days, several Facebook friends have posted last day of school and/or graduation pictures of their kids. I love seeing all of them, as they are permanent snippets of wonderful memories in the years to come.  

The above listed pictures in this blog entry are mine. It's my Bachelor of Arts degree from The Ohio State University. In 3 days (June 11), the date will mark a significant graduation anniversary for me. Those who know me well already know. For those who don't, feel free to enlarge the picture. Hint:  it's more than 20 years.

To all students that have finished their school year or have graduated, congratulations. You and your family should be proud of your achievements and what the future holds. If you get a chance, here are some funny and irreverent snippets of this year's graduation speeches, courtesy of Mental Floss.

Sunday, June 03, 2012

Aimee Mann and Michael Penn

photo courtesy of Vanity Fair

The above photo are 2 American singer-songwriters.  As I blogged previously about Jessica Yu and Mark Salzman, you might not be familiar with them.  But you might be familiar with their music. And yes, they're a married couple too.

The spectacled blonde is Aimee Mann, former lead singer of 80's new wave band 'Til Tuesday (known for "Voices Carry" and "Comin' Up Close).  The video clip listed below is the song "Save Me" from the film "Magnolia".

The bearded brown-haired fellow next to Aimee is her husband, Michael Penn (Sean's older brother).  He is best known for the toe-tapping, cleverly written tune, "No Myth".   I'm not ashamed to admit I play this song full blast and sing at the top of my lungs (alone in my car so I don't shatter anyone's eardrums or make any dogs howl).  Check it out for yourself.

By now you're probably wondering if Aimee and Michael have ever performed together.  Yes, they have.  Below is a video from the movie (starring Sean Penn) "I Am Sam", which features the Beatles song, "Two of Us".

Keep up the great work and continued success in your music.