Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Fake Plastic Girl

Recently People magazine featured the MTV reality show The Hills star, Heidi Montag on the cover. The wannabe pop star was sharing the story of her recent and shocking operation in which she underwent 10 different plastic surgery procedures.

At 23 years old, Montag has received a mini brow lift, botox in various places, a nose job revision (following a surgery in 2007), facial fat injections, chin reduction, liposuction on the neck, waist, hips, inner and outer thighs, had her ears pinned back, a buttock augmentation and a breast augmentation revision which enhanced her previously enlarged chest to a DDD.

According to the star, it’s still not enough. She wants larger breasts yet, which already over power her small frame, and stated in the interview that as she ages there will constantly be maintenance to keep herself looking ‘perfect’.

In my opinion, Heidi was already a pretty girl when she debuted on screen in the first season of The Hills. She was someone young girls watching the show could somewhat relate to. I was disappointed after her first surgery in 2007 when she had her nose and breasts done, but she still looked ‘normal’. Then Hollywood swallowed up the best of her and she looks plastic and fake. It’s absolutely disgusting.

What is she teaching young girls today? To be successful you have to have the blondest hair, the biggest boobs, and the smallest waist? She is not helping girls improve their confidence and embrace their own bodies. In today’s world, the pressure to be thin and beautiful is everywhere. Another fake blonde wanting to become famous through her looks rather than genuine talent and smarts is exactly what this world DOESN’T need. And is she really becoming successful?

Alongside her media hungry husband, Spencer Pratt, she has claimed she will become more famous than Michael Jackson. Her recently released album has sold barely 1000 copies.

Her first live performance on Miss Universe 2009 was a train wreck. Decked out in a skin colored body suit, similar to what Britney Spears wore during one of her performances, she wriggled around on stage what she called a dance routine, while lip synching, although in an interview following the performance she insisted it was her singing. It was a horrible, talentless performance.

It’s a career already as fake as her chest.

We need to stop paying attention to these so called celebrities like Heidi Montag and start recognizing the celebrities that promote healthy habits and encourage girls to love their own bodies, imperfections and all. And never forget, that it’s really the personality on the inside that counts the most.



Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Talented Twins

Tegan and Sara returned to their home town, and place of graduation for two shows at the Jubilee in Calgary January 9th and 10th. The twin sisters are on tour promoting their sixth album, Sainthood, released in October, 2009, and teamed up with the two-piece Australian indie rock duo An Horse.

They started the show with Arrow, the first song off their new album, and there was very little difference in quality from the live show to the recorded album. Backed by a three piece band, the girls pumped out song after song, making their way through all the songs from Sainthood, and throwing in a mix of songs from their past five albums.

No strangers to the music scene, the sisters have been performing for more than a decade, and they have come a long way since their days of playing in local bars. Partway through the set, Tegan took a break to tell a story about buying their first amp when they were kids. The comedic banter between the girls, often about childhood memories and various tour antics, is one of the best parts about seeing the duo live.

What comes as a surprise is that until recently, the girls had never written a single song together. Their songs are written separately and usually the writer will sing the main melody. The unusual writing process has proven to be successful over the years, but the girls decided to try their hand at writing together. While none of the co-written songs made it on the record, they informed the crowd that they weren’t bad songs, they just didn’t make the cut and we may hear them down the road.
After making it through the set list, the girls return for a 4 song encore, ending the show with my personal two favorite songs, the slower Call it Off and the angry, energized ballad, Living Room.

Starting off as two girls with a guitar, Tegan and Sara Quin have grown to be successful indie rockstars. Their talent and personalities shine through their music onstage and it is highly recommended to go see them play in their hometown.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

A Decade of Memories

December 31 was the end of not only another year, but an entire decade. Looking back at the last ten years, I realize how much I've accomplished.

Ten years ago I was 13 years old and just beginning high school. During those four years in school I learned a new language and fell in love with a unique country, spawning my quest to visit Japan. In my fourth year of Japanese studies I even earned the 'Best Japanese Student' award, which was a proud accomplishment.

For my work experience class, I was looking for something to prepare myself for the journalism career I had planned to pursue and found myself working as a reporter for the local newspaper. I feel very lucky to have had the opportunity to work with a great editor who gave me the freedom to write on topics of my choice most of the time. I loved seeing my name in print!

I graduated high school and shortly after left home and moved to the city, where I was taking Business Administration at the college. I was disappointed I wasn't accepted into the journalism program that I had originally applied for, but didn't give up on my writing. I contributed to the college paper writing music and concert reviews. It was an exciting new chapter of my life, starting a life of my own at only 17! I did well though!

High School Graduation, 2004

Two years later, I had graduated from my program with a diploma in Business Administration, majoring in Marketing. I believe I was the first one in my entire family to graduate from college at this point! I was even juggling a part time job at Music World, immersed in a world I love, MUSIC!

Following graduation, I was hired at the local credit union, where I worked as a teller for six months, before moving to the department I am currently working as an administrative assistant. I just recently received my 3 year service award and I couldn't have asked for a better team to work with over the past three years. They have become my second family!

In my free time, I was lucky to be apart of an awesome dance group where I gained some confidence and, well, learned to dance! Most of my evenings were spent at the studio, learning new routines and making new friends. I met alot of great girls and had some great experiences performing across the province. While I may be shy on the outside, I have always secretly loved the spotlight.

Chair Tease Dance

During these ten years, my love for music exploded, fueling my concert addiction. I've had the opportunity to see so many of my favorite artist live, even being lucky enough to meet some of them. Many people don't understand how I can spend so much money going to concerts all the time, but they don't know how much happiness I feel submerged in a crowd watching our favorite musicians onstage.

Dallas Green of City and Colour

Lady Gaga

Gwen Stefani

Britney Spears

Of course I can't forget to mention the amazing travel opportunities I have had. In March 2001 my family went on holidays in Hawaii, which was such a beautiful place! I would love to go back there. In December that same year, we traveled to Las Vegas for the National Finals Rodeo. We explored the hotels on the strip, checked out the Hoover Dam and the Valley of Fire, as well as the Tournament of Kings medieval show and a magic show. It was an interesting time at the airports, being two short months after the 9/11 attacks in New York.

In 2002 and 2003 we traveled to Mesa, Arizona to visit my grandfather, which would be the last big family trips out of the country.

September of 2007 my grandma, uncle and aunt took me to New York City for my 21st birthday. Despite growing up on an acreage raising both sheep and goats, I have always loved big cities and always dreamed of seeing New York! We took in the Lion King and Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, wandered Times Square, China Town and Little Italy, saw the Statue of Liberty from the Staten Island Ferry, rode the subway, saw Wall Street, bought a replica designer bag down an alley in a sketchy secret room down Canal Street, ate a hot dog on the street, visited the MOMA (Museum of Modern Art) and the Guggenheim, walked the Brooklyn Bridge, wandered through Central Park, bought designer dresses in the Upper East Side, watched Matt Lauer filming Good Morning America, and so much more. We accomplished alot in the short time we were there, but at the same time there is still so much left to see. I can't wait to return to that city

Statue of Liberty

Radio City Music Hall

Brooklyn Bridge

Wall Street

In April 2008, I took my first trip without family to Las Vegas for my best friend's 21st birthday. It was a blast! We all shopped until our credit cards were maxed, I bought yet another designer dress! We got the VIP treatment at all the clubs and were treated like queens.

May 2009 saw another girls trip to the City of Sin and it was another absolute blast. This time we managed to take some day trips outside of Nevada. One day spent lying on Huntington Beach, eating seafood and strolling Rodeo Drive, and another day spent sky diving, before a trek to Zion Nation Park in Utah, where we climbed Angels Landing. Angels landing is a 2.4 meter trek up solid rock trail, with nothing but a chain to hold onto to keep you from falling over the edge. What an unreal day that was!

2009 was obviously the year for fearlessness. Not only did I jump out of a plane and climb to the top of a mountain, I also put my nerves to the test by trying out bungee jumping in Nanaimo, British Columbia while visiting one of my best friends from high school. The search is on to find more ways to give my parents heart attacks and get the adrenaline pumping!

Climbing Angels Landing in Zion National Park, Utah

Just landed from sky diving in Mesquite, Nevada

Getting ready for bungee jumping in Nanaimo, BC

This past year saw the end of my dance career. But I quickly immersed myself in new activities, trying out yoga for the first time. I fell in love with yoga and am continuing to practice into the new year.

I also began running more seriously, and as of the end of December am able to run 3km continuously, in less than half hour. I am proud of this accomplishment being that I have never been very athletic and have always had trouble with any cardio exercise. My new goal for 2010 is to run a marathon this summer, I'm hoping even a 10k!

Now 23 years old, I realize I have grown a lot over the past year, not to mention the past decade. I've been a lot of places, made some amazing friends and memories to never be forgotten. I've done things I never thought I would do, and have had a lifetime of fun along the way. It's hard to even predict where I will be and what will happen over the next ten years, but I'm excited to find out!

To everyone in my life, all the best in 2010 and beyond!