Ellen Page Officially Comes Out

I‘ve been a fan of actress Ellen Page’s work ever since she appeared in the Indie hit Juno. She’s always had a great mix of intelligence, humor, depth and humility in every role she has taken on, and while I haven’t met her, she seems as down to earth as they come. She also gets extra brownie points for being Canadian, natch!

Earlier tonight, at the Human Rights Campaign Time to Thrive Conference being held in Las Vegas, Ellen Page came out as a gay woman. She was visibly shaken with nerves and understandably so. The following speech displays her ‘oh so human’ plight, and it was one that moved me beyond words.

I’m truly happy for her, and for anyone she may inspire to authentically walk in their truth, whatever that may be.

‘I Am Tired of Lying by Omission’—Ellen Page

Watch here:

Here’s to compassion & acceptance for all human beings…

XOXO                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 The Pop Culture Rainman

I Came, I Saw, I Attended My First Ever Blogger Conference-#BlissDom 2013

Athough I’ve been a published writer for over fifteen years I’ve only recently become hip to the blogger scene. First as an exclusive contributor for the Huffington Post and in the last 6 month’s on my personal blog The Pop Culture Rainman.

In an era where it is *encouraged to spill ones own digital ink* throughout social media, writers—-› especially funny ones, have become super forces on the web.

Via personal blog sites, Youtube channels and Twitter platforms, successful bloggers (i.e. those with healthy follow counts) can receive huge pay offs in lieu of book deals, television pilots and the ambiguous apogee in social media stature; Online Fame.
One of the largest communities and resources for bloggers is the American site BlogHer.com which boasts an online community of 92 million. BlogHer also hosts several niche and one mammoth conference, where I’ve been told the totem pole of online famedome looms large–hierarchy ‘tude included.
Blissful Thinking
In it’s fourth year, Blissdom Canada brands itself as Canada’s Premier Social Media/Blogging/PR Conference. With around 500 attendees from all over the country, Blissdom sets itself apart as a ‘kinder, gentler’ conference (how so very Canadian!) with the marrow to *inspire,* *connect,* and *teach.*
“This year we were very intentional that everyone [feel] at home,” said Shannon Mischuk co-principal at Blissdom Canada. “We want everyone to be conscious of their words and give everybody a chance to use their voice. Numbers don’t matter to us, it’s all about the conversations that take place”.
Being a blogger conference neophyte, I was excited to immerse myself in the culture, meet some like-minded individuals, and connect with some great Canadian brands. The setting was the Delta Meadowvale in Mississauga and although it’s a 3 day affair, I strictly attended Friday’s all day agenda starting at 8am.
Upon arrival I run into 10-year old blogger Hannah Alper in the lobby of the hotel, daughter of Twitter herculean musicologist, Eric Alper.
I want to help the world and promote causes I believe in, like the environment and social action” said Hannah not forgetting to promote herself as an official We Day and Free the Children speaker.
Hannah Alper: Her Future's So Bright *WE* Gotta Wear Shades!

Hannah Alper: Her Future’s So Bright *WE* Gotta Wear Shades!

Erm, Holy Impressive?!  I just stood there inhaling in her adultness and poise.
I do believe I was almost *exclusively* making my Barbie’s hump each other at her age and shame washes over me.
Mommy Bloggers Oh My!
A trend is taking shape; most of the women I am meeting overwhelmingly identify as ‘Mommy Bloggers’ in various permutations.
There were The Mompraneurs, The Yummy Mummies, The Outspoken Blunt Moms, The Karate Moms, The Happy Clappy Perfectly Positive Mommy’s, The ‘Can We Talk’ Mommy’s, The Wine Mommy’sThe-This-is-Why-We-Drink-Mommy’s, The Bacon Mommy’s (ok, I made that one up) the Glam Mommy’s and the Yoga/Pilates Mommies. (BDB ‘Big Deep Breath’!)
Mommy Bloggers
Even though I’m not a mom myself, I get the ‘sisterhood’ of it all, and I understand the large draw to these kinds of events. The Mommy Blogger revolution began from the reality that many new moms feel isolated and overwhelmed and it was a way to initially share tips, stymie loneliness and curate community. From speaking to some of these women, many are ‘desperate‘ for a night or weekend away to connect with their friends and learn about their craft.
Of course not all ‘Mommy Bloggers’ simply write about runny noses and eco-diapers, while many eschew the term itself as it can sound quite condescending and limiting.
I’m not trying to devalue or mock Mommy Bloggers, the fact is, most of the women I met at Blissdom owned this term in their titles and branding platforms. I would never insinuate that it is all they are. I mean at the core we are all writers trying to express ourselves creatively right?
Perhaps it says more about me than anything that I felt stifled by the overwhelming atmosphere of Mommy Bloggers. Hmm..projection much Ms Gold? (Fertility Woes Ovah Here!)
*Might I add, most were lovely and as kind as can be while ONLY one or two appeared to have swallowed their own vomit in my presence?

Ad Titans Sid Lee, Absolut Vodka & Icona Pop all collab together for an Xtravaganza House Ball!

I absolutely adore when an ad house collaborates with multiple streams to create something so unique it *begs* to be noticed.

In this case, creative titans Sid Lee collaborated with Absolut Vodka and ‘It Girl’ group Icona Pop for a fusion cocktail of premium Absolut Vodka and a Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand called Absolut Tune. The sparkly new concoction; which tastes a little like champagne with a dash of vodka, is obvs not champagne at all–but it looks absolutely yummylicious! 

The packaging and ornate glass bottle have a polish and sophistication that will be a huge hit with party-goers and house warming gifters alike, especially over thanksgiving weekend and X-mas. Again, the allure here is that for $31.95, it looks like a champagne bottle with an authentic wire cork, and you’ll probably want to save the bottle itself as a keepsake place to keep your spare change.

Absolut Tune

Absolut Tune

But I digress. I’m not here to ‘flog poetic’ about the product (unless I’m getting PAIDwhich I’m not)

The real genius here is in the marketing campaign!

The viral video which focuses on a modern New York House Ball is loosely based on the iconic documentary Paris is Burning–a chronicle of the 80’s Harlem drag and house ball scene that came out in 1990.  It was in this film that the audience was introduced to a profusion of terminology like ‘Realness,’Giving Face,’ Reading and a highly stylized dance called Voguing.

The fact that the “All Night” video is a narrative of the house ball scene, a music video and very subtle advertorial in one is where the magic lies.  I also thoroughly enjoyed seeing José Gutiérrez known as Father Jose (AKA Father Xtravaganza) featured prominently in this video.

No Way Jose!!!

No Way Jose!!!

Gutiérrez is a famed choreographer and a stalwart of the house ball scene, who at a young age had a brief cameo in Paris is Burning.

Gutiérrez also gained international acclaim when Madonna hand-picked him to be a principal dancer on her Blond Ambition tour and featured him in her video for “Vogue“.

To sum up; this is one of the best ads I’ve seen in recent memory. It’s authenticity and attention to detail makes the branding potential for Absolute Tune limitless, with ‘house party’ events already being planned with the likes of DJ’s Samantha Ronson and Solange Knowles in New York and LA.

Look out for Absolute Tune this fall.

I’ll drink to that!

xoxo                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Pop Culture Rainman

Girl(s) Crush!



I have a confession to make. I, the Pop Culture Rainman™ who is normally head and shoulders ahead of all TRENDS and everything that is coolio, was late to the party on the HBO juggernaut GIRLS.

Not having HBO was certainly part of the problem, yet it was always a goal deeply baked into my psyche to finally procure the HBO DVD’s, but life as you can appreciate, can often get in the *way*.

Finally this weekend, with Season 1 & 2 in hand, I watched both seasons in less than 24hrs in a back to back GIRLS marathon. The show should really change its title to CRACK.

Yes, I’m in the honeymoon phase of GIRLS fandomania, and I need to spread the gospel of how this show is LEAGUES above any other show on cable tv or otherwise.

At first glance, one might think it’s a kissing cousin of Sex in The City, but it has ZERO in common with the former series beyond the fact that there are 4 main female characters.

GIRLS centers around lead character Hannah Horvath, an early 20-something writer from Brooklyn who may just be the “voice of a generation“. Through her, we meet friends Marnie; supposedly her best friend, but like all female relationships it waxes and wanes into love and then PURE vitriol depending on the scenarios that can often play out within a ‘bestie’ union. Marnie is perfectly ‘imperfect’ and this is part of the allure in watching her wade through the painful trials of getting’s ones ‘shit together’.
There’s also Jessa; a free-to-be-you-and-me jet-setter with a lovely English accent who walks into every room and commands its oxygen, and her younger cousin Shoshanna. Shoshanna is the youngest character and while she “vibrates on a very strange frequency” Shoshanna’s innocent genius can not be described in mere words. Please see exhibit video A Here: Oh Shoshanna….

There are a slew of rich male characters as well, the main stand out being Adam; a sexual deviant whose other past times include playwriting and woodworking. He is painfully socially awkward and a bit of a shut-in. At times he seems absently vacant, and other times exhibits depths of pure genius. By the end of Season Two we see very clearly that he is a man full of heart, and possibly the character with the MOST integrity of all (with Shoshanna & Hannah coming in at a close 2nd.) He is authentically himself, when everyone else is in a try-hard triathlon to fit in and discover themselves. Hannah is also fiercely authentic, and bares not just her-less-than-TV-perfect body with complete abandon and fearlessness, but her inner humility and demons. She is honest to a fault, smart as a whip and is adorably likable.

This show has inspired me to collectively gather up the themes from a book I’ve been writing for over a decade and turn it into the next HBO zeitgeist.

Yes…I plan on giving it my all to make it HAPPEN.

Until then, I am waiting with bated breath for season three to commence and all I can say is Lena Dunham? Between your bravery to OWN your body in ways that television audiences have NEVER seen before, write, direct and ACT in this incredible series…


Thank you for taking television to a unchartered new level and keep up the excellent work. And the sex. 😉

The Pop Culture Rainman™

Happy Birthday to Us Mom…

My Beautiful Mother

My Beautiful Mother

In a couple of hours it will be the first birthday without my precious mother calling me to sing me ‘Happy Birthday’ in her lovely, gentle lilt. I’m not sure if my blog is a portal to the heavens, but in the interest of all things being *interconnected*, soul contracts, and sheer GRATITUDE, I want to THANK my late mother for giving birth to me, and tomorrow will be celebrated with her in mind.

Love you mamma.

Happy Birthday to US. xo

Tony Robbins (*the adrenaline love bomb) Live in Toronto July 24th!

Tony Robbins Hypnotic Gaze

Tony Robbins Hypnotic Gaze

I’m bending-over-backwards-and-doing-the-splits *thrilled* to be attending the July 24th-Legacy Mastery-A Passion For Life conference in Toronto 1 week from today!

This is not my first rodeo seeing the adrenaline love bomb aka Mr. Tony Robbins either. I got my first glimpse of his supreme mental flossing two years ago when he appeared with Oprah et al in Toronto, and its one I will never forget.

The Tony Robbins Hokey Pokey ♫ …

Tony commanded the stage with his goliath frame, a golden tan and pearly white teeth that resembled small buildings. He was all presence and persuasion even before he uttered a word. That man had me jumping up and down repeating mantras and hugging my neighbours to the left and right of me; it was uhhh-mazing how he could turn a sea of people inside out with inspiration and a renewed passion for life. He was a breath mint on amphetamines and I was perma-smitten by his *everything*.

He managed to eclipse Oprah’s mammoth presence and even writing that feels illegal!!??

I vowed then & there to see him again whenever I could.

So he’s back headlining with five other ‘speakers’ whose expertise range from mastery, creativity & branding, work life balance, success and customer relations…bla bla bla de bla de lee bla.

Not to be rude, but let’s face it….EVERYONE is there to see TR!

He’s Vitamin C for your noggin’ yo’! (*I have an endless stream of metaphors for this man!)


Fall Beauty & Fashion Trends for Guys & Dolls!

I know what your thinking…were *FINALLY* just getting into the swing of Summer and I’m talking fall trends?

Such are the tasks of being a tastemaker my friendsicles! You just enjoy your lemonade and infinity salt water pool, and I’ll take care of the trend forecasting, mmmkay?

Organic Men’s Skin Care

Skin is the body’s largest organ (and most breathable) so it’s no wonder that men, and companies that cater to men, are getting hip to the organic grooming trend now more than ever.

Bull Dog Organic Skin Care

Bull Dog Organic Skin Care

Bull Dog Natural Skin Care is a great company from the UK that caters to the regular dude (read: non metrosexual). The packaging is simple and recyclable and you will never find Parabens, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, artificial colours or synthetic fragrances in their products nor are they tested on animals. They run a lean machine, with offerings of simple skincare, wash and shave.

Long Hair

Long & Shaggy for Fall '13

Long & Shaggy for Fall ’13

Long hair for men, is a HUGE trend for fall 2013. Think: circa 90’s Seattle rockers like Eddie Vedder et al for inspiration. All one length and hitting your chin or longer is the goal, with this easy wash-and-go look that screams ‘Grrrrrrrrrrrr‘.

Bordeaux: The Color, Not the Wine

2013 is a 'Good year' for Bordeaux

2013 is a ‘Good year’ for Bordeaux

A great alternative to mainstays like Black, Greys and the spring/summer trend of Royal Blue is Fall 2013’s ‘it color’ for men, Bordeaux. It’s great as an accent color; (hat, tie, shoes) or can be a head to toe affair–the choice is yours, the sophistication a given!

Authentic Looking Knits

Cozy Knits

Cozy Burberry Knit Sweater

Sweaters aren’t anything new for fall you balk, but the ones that ‘look’ like they were knitted by GRAMS are! Think: soft and cozy knits that hang from the body in a loose but still fitted way.

So there you have it Guys…the ABC’s of some Fall Trends that you can easily adapt into your lifestyle!

Ear Cuffs

Ear Cuff

Ear Cuff

This ‘ear adornment’ trend (it’s way too interesting to call it mere jewelry!) has been huge this summer and will bleed into fall in a big way! As you can see it’s QUITE the statement piece and lends itself to high fashion.

It personally reminds me of ethereal maiden elves (think: Lord of the Rings-esque) and has been a fast favorite for models and celebrities alike.

There are the ornamental cuff’s…

Chanel Ear Cuff

Ear Cuff @ Chanel

Ryan Storer Cuff

Ryan Storer Cuff

Rodarte Cuff

Rodarte Cuff

Or something a little more pared down…but no less pricey! These Repossi Berbère 18-karat gold diamond ear cuffs run over 13k and are a hit with the likes of Halle Berry, Alicia Keys & Rihanna…

Halle & Alicia are Cuffin!

Halle & Alicia are Cuffin!

and for something even more conservative, Repossi also makes this smaller piece for around 2k…

Itsy Bitsy Cuff

Itsy Bitsy Cuff

These are obviously on the higher end of the price point, but as with all trends, you will be able to find a version of the Ear Cuff in your price point that will no less DAZZLE, because YOU are wearing it you SEXY thing!

Oxblood Everything

Oxblood is officially the new black – and is THE color in beauty for fall 2013. It’s kind of harsh sounding, so for those who have weak systems you can call it ‘Bordeaux’.

It will be all over everyone’s Lips for fall making a GOTH/GLAM statement…

Oxblood Pout

Oxblood Pout

And every Nail Polish co. you can shake a stick at will have their own version of the sophisticated color…

Oxblood Nails it for Fall!

Oxblood Nails it for Fall!

There you have it DOLLS! Some tricks of the trade…well in advance!

The PopCultureRainman™

A Passage for EVERYONE…

I read this passage about a month ago, and beyond the goose bumps that appeared all over my arms, *every* part of this passage spoke to me–resonating deep within. Whoever you are, whatever stage you are at in your journey in this life…I believe this passage is a great road map to live life by. I truly hope you enjoy it as I have.

N.B. It is unclear who has written this so I am not attributing any author to it, and in some ways it seems fitting as it would fall in line with the true meaning of the text that this author would remain anonymous.

You will sometimes meet someone you believe is a soul mate; you feel the connection on many levels, perhaps instantly. And as you get to know each other more, you begin to feel the connection deepen and you feel that you must have an arrangement with this person that predated this lifetime.

Do not assume, however, that this soul connection necessarily means that you are meant to be happily together for this lifetime. It may be that you are meant to be friends and allies, helping each other out. It may be that you are going to help each other in ways that even involve conflict and separation, but with an end result that is beneficial to you. It may be that you are going to learn some lesson from each other and then go your separate ways.

What you need to do with all relationships, including those that have that instant and deep connection, is let be. You need to allow all of life, including close relationships, flow and evolve. You need to let people be who they are, not what you want them to be. And above all, you must not try to control, push and prod, manipulate and orchestrate relationships.

Have the courage and the heart, the centeredness, to follow your own path, to be who you are and love being who you are, no matter what. Shine out and show us who you are, so that people who are looking for someone exactly like you can find you. Do not allow setbacks or even major betrayals to dampen your shine and your being.

In life’s journey you will encounter much, narrow paths blocked by avalanches, forks in the road shrouded in fog, deep valleys of darkness and bright sunny days in meadows of golden poppies. It is all a part of life. And as you walk your path, other people will join you for a time: a dear friend, a lover, a spouse, children and parents. And then they may go away
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What Success REALLY Looks Like!

The Real Truth about Success that no-one tells you, ESPECIALLY in business, is that it takes 1,000 FAILURES beforehand. It’s much more of a twisty-twirly journey then a Straight Line. Enjoy the ride!

KEEP GOING! Never Give Up!