RIP Shane Yellowbird

Canadian country singer & singer-songwriter Shane Yellowbird has passed away at the age of 42 on April 25th. A Cree, in 2007, he was named the Aboriginal Entertainer of the Year at the Aboriginal People’s Choice Music Awards, Chevy Trucks’ Rising Star of the Year at the Canadian Country Music Awards and his song “Pickup Truck” was one of the year’s ten most played country songs. The Calgary based singer suffered from epilepsy and had occasional seizures.

While his career was shorter than some, he accomplished more than many could hope to. It started when a speech therapist suggested he start singing to help control a stutter. His impressive voice began winning competitions, then landing him gigs on bar stages where his manager Louis O’Reilly first saw him. he released his debut album titled Life Is Calling My Name. The album includes the singles “Beautiful Concept,” “They’re All About You,” “Pickup Truck” and “I Remember the Music.” In November 2006, Yellowbird won three awards at the Aboriginal People’s Choice Music Awards ceremony, including Best New Artist, Single of the Year (“Beautiful Concept”) and Best Video (“Beautiful Concept”).

Yellowbird opened the 2007 Aboriginal People’s Choice Music Awards, starring with Lorne Cardinal and Gabrielle Miller of Corner Gas. Later that evening, he was named the Aboriginal Entertainer of the Year. He also won awards for Best Country CD (Life Is Calling My Name) and Best Music Video (“Pickup Truck”). Yellowbird later won three trophies at the 2007 Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards, including Best Male Artist, Best Country Album and Best Album of the Year. He was also nominated for the 2008 Juno Award for Country Recording of the Year. Yellowbird’s second album, It’s About Time was released on November 17, 2009, featuring the single, “Bare Feet on the Blacktop”. In the United States, the video received a nomination from the Native American Music Association. Yellowbird won two Native American Music Awards for Best Country Recording for “Life Is Calling My Name” in 2011 and won Best Country Recording for “It’s About Time” in 2012.

At the time of his death, Yellowbird was in a domestic partnership and the couple announced their engagement hours before his death was announced. He had four children. He suffered from epilepsy and had occasional seizures. Tributes to the 42-year-old, who died Monday night after a battle with epilepsy, have been pouring in from every corner of the entertainment world. Aaron Goodvin, Craig Moritz, Jason Benoit and Aaron Pritchett are just a few who’ve been filling social media feeds with touching and colourful stories of Shane.

Yet Another “Woohoo!!!” Three Day Weekend

Well it was only by yesterday evening that I came to know that I have a three day weekend this weekend because it is a holiday on Monday (moon sightings and stuff). That is always a great feeling – yes ofcourse I took a day off last Monday and therefore I got a 3 day weekend last weekend but was for hospital & doctor’s visit reasons. This one is a rest and relaxation weekend.

This is good since I am conducting two training batches in May (starting on the 4th) and the way that this training is, it is a 6 day work week and I hate it. So it is good that I get a 3 day weekend to start things off and I can rest and relax for 3 days. Today I went and brought some fresh fruits – apples, green & black grapes, some cheese slices, bell peppers & carrots (and almost bought some ice cream). It is still hot & humid, almost intolerably so. After lunch I switch the ac on in my room and watched the latest episode of The Blacklist and then then 2012 movie John Carter.

Today evening is just the regular coffee & snacks, relaxing, shaving and then taking a long shower, watching Youtube videos and listening to music. Tonight’s dinner is KFC and then I will go to sleep. Tomorrow and Monday it will be more of the same and I will try to watch a few more movies. I might go out on Monday, which I doubt since it is so damn hot & humid. Let’s see.

6 Interesting Facts About Latvia

In 1524, a statue of the Virgin Mary at the Cathedral in Riga, Latvia, was accused of being a witch. They put it on trial by throwing it in the river. Since the wooden statue floated, they declared it guilty and burned it.

Smoking in the presence of a child is considered physical abuse in Latvia.

Latvia has the highest percentage of deaths during the Second World War, which represents 12.5% ??of its population. There followed 190,000 Latvians imprisoned in Soviet gulags after 1945.

In the beginning of the 20th century, giant hangars that were made to house German-made airships in the center of Riga, are today a place for 3,000 trade stands. The place is Europe’s largest market bazaar today.

Janis Pinups, a Latvian patriot, was conscripted into and then deserted from the Red Army in 1944. Opposing the Soviet occupation of Latvia, he hid in the forest for 51 years and did not emerge until 1995, thereby avoiding ever becoming a Soviet citizen.

In Latvia, there is a museum dedicated to the world’s greatest liar – Hieronymus Karl Friedrich Freiherr von MĂŒnchhausen. Yes, you heard it right! At the time, he was known for telling many fake stories related to his moon travel and of his exemplary services during the Russo-Turkish War. Now, the country is generating handsome revenue from a museum dedicated to their hero. Latvia also issued a commemorative coin in 2005 to celebrate this legend’s 285th birthday.

What Are My Hobbies?

What are your hobbies?

I always seems to have some hobby or the other and a couple of them are very, very common. I wish I could do more though but I really do not have the time. Anyways, let’s look at the big 4.

Blogging:- Big duh! I love blogging and I love reading other people’s blogs. I do not attract a large number of regular viewers who are restricted to a handful of of true loyalists. Some of them even frequently comment on my blog posts. I used to try and track down people who seem to regularly visit (using Feedjit) and by that I mean, it only shows you the town or city but it can’t be a coincidence that many people from a small town keep visiting your blog. I’m pretty sure that some of the people visit frequently but do not comment. Whoever you guys are, please start commenting.

Oh and I blog about everything and anything that interests me but I usually blog about music, movies & tv series, hockey & football and stuff that I do and stuff that goes through my mind. Not all the stuff that goes through my mind; I have to censor some of them or you will all be shocked! Shocked people!!!

Listening to music: Music is the sole reason why I haven’t blown out my brains or jumped from a bridge. It keeps me sane. I have a huge collection of music ripped into mp3s and I love my collection. I want more ofcourse but what I do have is great. I have a varied interest in genres but there is no room for boybands, dance music, rap, hip-hop, Malayalam semi-classical or Bollywood music. I don’t play any instruments or taken any lessons on singing. I usually sing out loudly in the safety of my room but have gotten up on stage on a few occassions; the last one being in 2007 which was very memorable and a highlight for me. I also love rockumentaries which is a fine art IMHO!

Movies & tv series : – collecting them is a hobby right. I love to keep a copy of my favourite movies and tv series and keep a nice large collection of them. I’m restricted to mostly keeping digital copies of these movies which I download online via torrents but I do go and buy some dvds. A 3rd of my movies are on dvds which I play on my laptop and occasionally on the large screen tv / dvd player in the living room. Blu Ray is out of the question at the moment. I love scifi and am a huge Star Trek fan. I also love horror, comedy, romance, drama and action movies. I’m more of a tv series fanatic because with a tv series you can really dig deep into the characters, history, plots and such, especially for Scifi stuff, which I like. But yeah I’m into movies a whole lot too.

Collecting DVDs of my fav tv shows & movies : – This is more recent hobby and the most expensive one. I started buying my own dvds back in late 2018. I had started to feel guilty about torrents and thought other than streaming, I should have another option to do something legal and get my own copies. So I thought I’d buy a few from Indian websites but I had started to get some money from blogging. I put a lot of that money that I earned (I never use my salary for this hobby) and I have amassed quite a decent collection. I also have a few Funko pops as well.

Prompt from 113 IDEAS FOR A BLOG POST at ThirteenThoughts.com

My Top 5 Favourite SitComs I Watched During My Childhood

Write a Post on Your Favorite Television Shows from Childhood

I love this prompt. However, as a big lover of tv shows, I couldn’t keep it to just 5. So…….I decided to do it in different genres. This list will be all shows I watched and were heavily into during my pre-teen years. Today will be sitcoms and then I think I will do a top 5 for dramas/action oriented and science fiction as well as one for cartoons. Oooh the cartoons are going to be very difficult to do. Anyways, here is my list in no particular order:

One of my favourite memories is about watching the sitcom Gimme A Break which ran from for six seasons from October 29, 1981, to May 12, 1987. Although I do not think I have watched the last 2 seasons, this show is big in my family’s memories and, along with the second show in this list, form the first 2 sitcoms that I have ever watched. The series starred Nell Carter as the housekeeper for a widowed police chief (Dolph Sweet) and his three daughters – played by Kari Michaelsen, Lauri Hendler & Lara Jill Miller – as well as the adopted son played by Joey Lawrence (seasons 3-6). I also had my first ever innocent crush at the wee age of 6 or 7 on Kari.

Mind Your Language is a British sitcom that premiered on ITV in 1977. It was produced by London Weekend Television and directed by Stuart Allen. Three series were made by the London Weekend Television between 1977 and 1979 and briefly revived in 1985 (or 1986 in most ITV regions) with six of the original cast. The series shows people of different countries with different social background, religions, and languages existing in the same classroom, learning English as a foreign language.

Silver Spoons is an American sitcom television series that September 25, 1982, to May 11, 1986The show focuses on the wealthy playboy Edward Stratton III, and his relationship with his young son Ricky Stratton. Ricky was the product of a brief marriage between Edward and Ricky’s mother. Edward was unaware that he had a son until Ricky comes to live with Edward at the outset of the series. The main cast stars Joel Higgins as Edward, Ricky Schroder as Ricky, Leonard Lightfoot as Edward’s attorney, Franklyn Seales as Edward’s business manager, and Erin Gray as Edward’s personal assistant and later love interest. Jason Bateman plays Ricky’s best friend over the first two seasons of the show, replaced by Alfonso Ribeiro over the remaining seasons. John Houseman plays Edward’s dour and disapproving father.

Small Wonder is an American children’s comedy science fiction sitcom that aired in first-run syndication from September 7, 1985, to May 20, 1989. The show chronicles the family of a robotics engineer who secretly creates a robot modeled after a human girl, then tries to pass it off as their adopted daughter, Vicki. The series turned out to be a surprise hit, specifically amongst the kid section, as many channels belonging to different nations witnessed while re-running the show. Owing to its popularity in some countries, the show had to be dubbed for different languages.

You Again? is an American sitcom television series that aired for two seasons on NBC from February 27, 1986 to January 7, 1987. It was based on the British show Home to Roost. Jack Klugman stars as Henry Willows, a man still embittered from his divorce ten years earlier, who had made no effort to see his son Matt (John Stamos) during that time. Henry had become fairly comfortable with his life as a supermarket manager and was not really looking to make major changes to it when Matt arrived looking to stay with his father, whom he hardly knew anymore. Matt was an ill-mannered but quite attractive youth who was very popular with the girls. He drove the gruff Henry almost over the edge, but of course in the end familial ties conquered all differences in sitcom tradition.

Honoroble mentions : Different Strokes, The Jeffersons, The Cosby Show & The Two Of Us.

Prompt from 202 Best Blog Post Ideas for 2022 from RyanRobinson.com

Rocky II (1979)

Rocky II is a 1979 American sports drama film written, directed by, and starring Sylvester Stallone.[2] It is the sequel to Rocky (1976) and is the second installment in the Rocky franchise. It also stars Talia Shire, Burt Young, Carl Weathers, and Burgess Meredith. In the film, Rocky Balboa (Stallone), struggling to adjust to family life, finds himself in a rematch fiercely demanded by Apollo Creed (Weathers). Development of Rocky II began in 1977, after Stallone completed the screenplay. United Artists were reluctant to allow Stallone to direct after John G. Avildsen, the director of the first film, was unable to return. Stallone was eventually hired after disallowing the film to be made without him as director, and the returns of the rest of the cast was secured soon thereafter.

Principal photography commenced in 1978, with filming held primarily on location in Philadelphia, during which, Stallone sustained several injuries. Rocky II was theatrically released in the United States by United Artists on June 15, 1979. The film received generally positive reviews from critics, with praise for its characterization, finale, and Stallone’s performance. It grossed $200 million worldwide and $85 million in North America, making it the third highest-grossing film of 1979 domestically.

Your Blog Content Schedule + Tips

So I don’t really have a schedule for releasing or publishing blog posts. I do it far too often and many times in a day to actually worry about creating a schedule. But first let’s see why experts say you should create a blogging schedule:

Once you’ve created your blog and chosen your topics to write awesome blog posts, the next step is to define a blog schedule that will help you publish those awesome blog posts super consistently to increase your:

  • Social media shares
  • Social media subscribers
  • Traffic
  • Newsletter subscribers
  • Customer conversions

Chances are, you’re looking to create a blog schedule because you’ve heard publishing consistent content can help you grow your blog. It’s true! Actually, folks who publish consistent content get as much as 30% more traffic for every post they publish.

Having said that on most days, I try to post one post in the hours before lunch (which is 1:30 pm for me) usually between 11:30 am to 12:30 pm. I usually will thought of a topic by the end of breakfast and will start to check on sources by then. So the one hour slot of 11:30 am to 12:30 pm is great for me to publish that first post. A second post is usually done around dinner time or slightly after dinner. But on weekends and days off it can vary.

As for tips, I will say that when you are not writing a post look for prompts or topics that you want to write about. Each week save atleast 5 to 6 of them and schedule them in your drafts. That makes it easier to remember that you have planned to write about them in the coming days. Select your resources and links to other pages and then when it comes to posting, you are almost all set.

Prompt from 30 APRIL BLOG POST IDEAS at BloggingHerWay

Some Lesser Known Facts About Our Home Planet

60 Tons of Cosmic Dust Fall to Earth Daily : “Cosmic dust” sounds magical, but chances are you’ve inhaled a good amount of it just on your way to work. On a daily basis, dust from meteorites, comets, and other solar bodies fall to earth in tiny particles that increase the levels of sodium and iron in the planet’s atmosphere. Scientists studying the phenomenon estimate that altogether, about 60 tons of cosmic dust is falling to earth daily.

The Oceans Hold $771 Trillion Worth of Gold : Not that you’d be able to get at any of it. But scientists estimate that the oceans of the world contain approximately 20 million tons of gold. Not on the ocean floor—in the water itself, in tiny particles of approximately 13 billionths of a gram per liter.

The Greatest Vertical Drop Is in Canada : If you’re looking for a seriously steep cliff, you’ll find it on Canada’s Baffin Island in Auyuittuq National Park in the northern part of the country. Named Mount Thor, it has a 4,000-foot rock face that has proved daunting for climbers, with 30 attempts made before a four-man team from America finally succeeded in 1985 (it only took them 33 days).

The Hottest Spot in the World Is in California : Though for years El Aziza, Libya was reputed as the hottest place in the world, with recorded temperatures of 136 degrees Fahrenheit in 1922. But those measurements have since been invalidated by scientists. Due to its disqualification, the honor went to Death Valley, CA, which recorded temperatures of 134 degree Fahrenheit in July 1913.

Earth Gets Very, Very Cold : It may not surprise you that Antartica is the coldest place on the planet, but what might surprise you is just how cold it gets there—temperatures on the East Antarctic Plateau have been found to dip to minus-133.6 degrees Fahrenheit, drawn from data acquired by NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey.

There Are Parts of Earth With Less Gravity Than Others : Because of the uneven shape of the globe, the planet’s gravity is unevenly distributed, too, so some parts of the planet have been found to have lower or higher levels of gravity than others. Canada’s Hudson Bay, for example, was found to have lower gravity due to a massive ice sheet that “dented the earth 10,000 years ago, literally bending gravity” as one newspaper put it.

The Largest Living Organism Is a Fungus : Not as cool as a giant gorilla or something, the largest living organism on the planet is actually a honey fungus that spreads across 2.4 miles in the Blue Mountains of Oregon. Though you’d just see the individual yellow-brown mushrooms sprouting on the surface, they are actually all connected to a giant organism under the surface (yes, this sounds like the stuff of nightmares).

What Is A Talent You Wish You Had?

I really wish I could play the guitar as well as, if not as good as my fav guitarists, as good as some of the Youtube or Instagram guitarists I see on a regular basis. I had taken some lessons when I was 12 years old. I picked up the music bug, the rock music bug in particular when I was 10 and really started getting to bands and musicians when I was 11.

The tutor was a tyrant and rude and obnoxious and we couldn’t wait to get out of there after the hour was up. I therefore quit wanting to learn as I hated the guy who taught us. A bad teacher can sour things up for you, even your passion. I wish I had stuck through with it or gone elsewhere. But I wish I had because, not just that it is cool & I love music, there are some other benefits to learning to play guitar:

  • Improves your discipline skills. Learning how to be disciplined is one of the most consistent benefits of playing guitar. You need to practice. Becoming strict with yourself is a valuable skill that can be applied to all areas of life.
  • Increases your creativity. Being adaptable and creative are excellent skills that you can utilize as both a musician and in your professional life.
  • Broaden your horizons. One of the best reasons to play guitar is to help expand your knowledge of music, and you will better understand the music you love.
  • Sharpens your concentration. Research has shown that one of the health benefits of playing guitar is that it improves concentration.
  • Creates therapeutic experiences. Guitar playing can be a very calming experience. If you are looking to relax and be productive, you should start learning the guitar.
  • Learning guitar introduces you to new people. There is a fantastic social element to guitar playing, and you will probably meet many new people if you start playing guitar in public.
  • Helps with confidence. One of the key benefits of playing guitar is that you will become more confident as you progress and become more skilled.
  • Introduces a new way to communicate. Being able to express yourself through your guitar playing should be an exciting experience for any beginner.
  • Improves your memory. One of the benefits of playing guitar on the brain is that by practicing over and over again, you can improve your memory
  • Boost your multitasking skills. Another benefit of playing guitar on the brain is that it increases your ability to multitask. As a guitarist, you will have to read music, play your instrument, and pay attention to other musicians all at the same time.
  • Improves your dexterity. The intricate plucking, picking, and strumming techniques you will learn will improve your coordination and dexterity.

Prompt from APRIL BLOG PROMPTS {12 MONTHS OF WRITING IDEAS} #BLOGPROMPTS at Food Fun Family

Eight Interesting & Fun Facts About Doughnuts

1. Over 10 billion doughnuts are made in the U.S. each year.

The American doughnut industry is huge, with numerous fast food chains dedicated to their production. Canada, meanwhile, produces fewer doughnuts (approximately 1 billion per year), but with its lower population, actually has the most doughnut shops per capita of any country in the world.

2. There are 10 people living in America with the last name “Doughnut” or “Donut.”

At least that was the total in 2011. It’s unclear whether “Doughnut” was their given last name, or whether they changed it out of passion for the pastry. Meanwhile, 13 people have the first name “Donut,” making it the 245,396th most popular name in the United States.

3. Voodoo Doughnut used to sell “medicinal” doughnuts, which were coated with Nyquil or Pepto Bismol.

Portland, Oregon-based Voodoo Doughnut is famous for its wild doughnut flavors. For a while, the doughnut shop even offered NyQuil- and Pepto Bismol-coated doughnuts (the latter were dipped in Pepto Bismol, sprinkled with Tums, and marketed to customers who’d had too much to drink and wanted a snack that was easy on the stomach). The doughnut shop was eventually forced to retire its medicinal flavors after the FDA stepped in.

4. Boston has the most doughnut shops per person.

Bostonians really love their doughnuts: The city has one doughnut shop for every 2480 people according to AdWeek.

5. The French used to call their doughnuts “nun’s farts.”

The airy fried dough fritters—slightly different from the American circular doughnut—are called pets de nonne in French, which translates to “nun’s farts.”

6. Renée Zellweger ate 20 doughnuts a day to gain weight for the Bridget Jonessequel.

RenĂ©e Zellweger needed to gain weight fast to reprise her role as the eponymous heroine in 2004’s Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason. The actress claimed to have eaten “a Big Mac and chips, potatoes swimming in butter, pizza, milkshakes, and 20 doughnuts” every day to hit her weight goal in time for shooting.

7. Doughnuts were served to soldiers during WWI.

During World War I, Salvation Army workers would bring soldiers doughnuts and coffee in the trenches of France to cheer them up and remind them of home.

8. One California doughnut shop became a movie star in the 1980s—and still is.

Featuring a massive 32-foot doughnut sculpture atop its low, flat roof, Randy’s Donuts is one of the most iconic Hollywood doughnut shops. The store, which opened in the 1950s as part of the now-defunct Big Donut Drive-In chain, has appeared in numerous movies, including Earth Girls are Easy (1988), Get Shorty (1995), The Golden Child (1986), Crocodile Dundee (1986), and Iron Man 2 (2010).

Yet Another Doctor’s Appointment & More Medicines

Well I went to see the doctor today and after coming back post getting the blood test results, I have more questions than answers. So after yet another blood test, which I did last month and got the results, it is just one thing that is slightly elevated. Not enough to make my rheumatologist worried. He said he would be worried and get me on a course of steroids only if it was 2 points above where it is now. So, he had given me some medicines, one which is new and the other which I have already taken for a month.

Going to the Medical Trust Hospital itself is a task. Last night I had cramps on my left calf while I was sleeping and I woke up jumping outta bed. I tried to walk it off and the pain finally subsided after 15 minutes or so. I then drank some water and went to the washroom as I needed to pee but then I couldn’t get back to sleep. I stayed awake most of the day and only slept for about an hour, fearful of getting another cramp. Good thing I had already booked an appointment.

I got outta bed by 8 am and got coffee after getting my toilet business done. Then I sat, half asleep at my laptop until 9 am when I went to get some breakfast. By 11 I shaved and showered and ironed my shirt and pants. I got late but booked an Uber to get to Medical Trust. I had to wait for maybe 45 minutes before I could see the doctor. I then bought my new medicines, got my blood test results printed out and came by by 3:30 pm to have a late lunch.

On This Day, April 24

On this day, April 24:

Too Proud To Fight, I’m Walking Back Into Night

I know this is not a new song in any sense but I only “discovered” this song a few months ago. Quite by chance, as I was scrolling through Instagram reels late one night, while I lay in bed struggling to fall asleep. Then a clip of this performance comes on, the chorus part, and I was hooked. I have listened to it so, so many times. It’s been a while since a “new” (or should I say new to me) song has connected with me on such a deep level. I had heard just a couple of songs of the band Helloween before this but man, I just love this song. It’s called Forever And One and this is a live version.

Arsenal 3 Manchester United 1

Arsenal stepped up their claims for a place in the Premier League’s top four at the expense of Manchester United’s ambitions in a thriller at Emirates Stadium. The Gunners came into the game on an upswing after ending a run of three successive defeats with victory at Chelsea, while United were attempting to bounce back from a humiliating 4-0 loss at Liverpool. And Arsenal took three crucial points as the visitors paid the price for shambolic defending and a missed penalty by Bruno Fernandes that undermined an enterprising attacking display. Nuno Tavares put Arsenal in front after only three minutes following errors from Raphael Varane and Alex Telles, the defender turning in a simple finish after David de Gea saved Bukayo Saka’s shot.

Eddie Nketiah then had an effort ruled out by the video assistant referee for offside but after being called to look at his pitchside monitor the referee awarded a penalty for a foul by Telles on Saka immediately before Nketiah’s shot, and Saka converted from the spot. United were a real danger in attack, the returning Cristiano Ronaldo deservedly pulling a goal back before the break for his 100th Premier League goal. It set the scene for a United siege, only for Fernandes to waste their big chance by carelessly rolling a second-half spot-kick against the post after Tavares handled. Arsenal cashed in on the reprieve when Granit Xhaka sealed the win by lashing home the Gunners’ third from 25 yards with 20 minutes remaining.

Arsenal’s win completed a superb response to three league losses that had jeopardised their top-four hopes. Mikel Arteta’s side had to fight through adversity – they were not convincing defensively and had several escapes – but they seized their chances when they came to take full advantage of United’s carelessness in front of goal. Tavares gave them the perfect start and while goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale had a mixed afternoon, he also made some crucial saves, one from Telles early on and another from Diogo Dalot proving significant. But Xhaka’s thumping drive gave De Gea no chance and there was a real mood of celebration inside Emirates Stadium at the final whistle.

Arsenal have inflicted serious damage on any slim hopes United may have had of reaching the top four while maintaining the pressure on north London rivals Tottenham in the battle to qualify for next season’s Champions League.