There's an old adage advising you to never meet your heroes. The reason they say that is because quite often your heroes turn out to be complete assholes.
And then where does that leave you? I'll tell you: It leaves you in the parking lot of an abandoned tire factory burning entire CD collections and boxes of novels.
It's a good thing that Anthony Yorfido didn't heed this piece of advice last week, because he would've missed out on a chance of a lifetime opportunity to meet his hero Steven Tyler, of the Aerosmith variety, henceforth to be referred to as Mr. Awesome-in-tight-pants.
Anthony has been a huge fan of Steven Tyler for many years but was unable to get tickets to the rocker's sold out show at nearby Fallsview casino in Niagara Falls. The Welland man – who has Down syndrome – was simply visiting a health supply store with his mother Diane on the fateful day. Anthony says he first noticed a "big big big big big limo" pull up to the store, and then in walked Steven Tyler. After a few moments Anthony gathered himself and made an introduction to the singer. When Tyler asked if he would be at his show that evening Anthony said he was not able to attend because he could not secure a ticket before they sold out.
Well Steven Tyler would have none of this bullshit, no sir. He said he was going to "make it happen," and promptly invited Anthony to that evening's show, complete with a backstage pass, thus securing for himself Ultimate Superstar Status for eternity.
BUT WAIT; THERE'S MORE.
Plenty of celebrities would go that far - there are many kind souls out there, even in Hollywoodland. But hold on. Shit is about to get all CRAY-ZEE up in here now with the surprise Tyler had in store for his superfan:
Yep; that's Anthony rocking it out on the maracas to Sweet Emotion, basically living out my Grade 11 fantasy dream life.
What makes this even better is that chance meeting between the two was totally genuine, totally organic, and totally serendipitous. There was no PR efforts, no contacting the Ellen Show or Facebook campaign. It was - and is, as we can see - simply a dream come true.
We need to talk about your purse.
I don't even need to see it to tell you it's too heavy, it needs a good purge, and it's missing crucial items. It's weighing you down literally and figuratively. Today things change.
A purse is important; it's our port in the storm and our portable emergency preparedness kit. That can mean different things to different people and almost nothing surprises me when it comes to what I've seen on an "emergency supplies" shortlist. As for your purse, it doesn't matter if the one you choose is a huge satchel or a hippie mailbag or a wallet on a string or a handkerchief bundle tied to the end of a long stick- a purse is your home away from home. It serves immediate needs (wallet, keys, lollipops (aka "Be Quiet Sticks) and I have strong feelings about purses.
Let's get started.
Dump your purse, the pockets, the bags inside, AND your wallet on a table in good light, preferably with no one around to see your secret shame.
My Secret Shame aka I AM AN EXPIRED TIMS CARD HOARDER
This is not the time for finesse. Pick up a piece of whatever and make a decision. Throw out all immediate garbage and old make up. Go through all 334 of your loyalty and points cards. Pitch the ones you never use, and cull the ones you want to keep. Put them in a separate pile because before any of them go back in your wallet you need to see if they make an app for them, eliminating the need to carry them around. Check gift card balances and throw out spent ones. Please; there is no way you are reloading that Tims Card. You'll buy a new one and you know it. Better yet, get the electronic version and save the planet the plastic and you the headache. Check your key ring while you're at it. You're not a building super - you don't need to carry those all with you everywhere.
Tip: Now is the time to have an extra key cut for friend or neighbour before you have to ask them to help you kick in your basement window. ASK ME HOW I KNOW.
Look at your keep pile. It should be at least 25% smaller than what you started with. It isn't? KEEP GOING.
Sort like with like. Take your keep pile and divide into piles like this:
You are now wired for sound! Your purse is now half the weight it used to be! You're so fresh it's gonna feel like you had a Brazilian wax, with none of the pain or potential delicate bit wax burns!
We all know Netflix. If we don't have it loaded on all our devices we've at least watched it somewhere, or at the very minimum we've heard about it. This is a digital world and on-demand streaming is the new "Must See TV;" the sight of giant televisions at the curb every bulk garbage pick-up day reflect the changing times. We watch our entertainment on tablets and screens more often than not and few people have a standing appointment to see a specific show at a specific time. And why would they? If you can download it at will or stream when you're ready, forget about scheduled viewing.
In addition to Netflix, we also have a few other services available to Canadians. CraveTV is probably next in popularity; it's parented by Bell Media and similar in price to Netflix for Canadian subscribers (about $8 per month.) If you're a Bell cable services subscriber, you may already have access - check your listings and contract. I recently downloaded it because the offerings are a good fit with my family's taste: namely, my 11 year-old son who cannot get enough of TV shows about blowing shit up, and all seven seasons of MythBusters are on CraveTV (as I discovered after receiving a kabillion dollar internet bill.) CraveTV also features shows you can't get through Netflix.
To us it wasn't a matter of choosing one or the other - it was simply a second helping of delicious mashed potatoes at the viewing potluck.
CraveTV looks and function similarly when compared to Netflix, esthetically speaking. The minimal text and graphics-driven homepage is more user friendly on my iPad than my laptop, but either way is easy to view once you get started. In some ways it's even easier to navigate than Netflix. CraveTV has even stepped into the original programming arena with shows like Letterkenny, a funny and cerebral new show which also happens to be very sweary and creative in its cursing, so yeah, it's a must-watch.
Where Netflix offers a broad range of cable-only programming, they are missing a lot from the current zeitgeist. CraveTV has some partners specifically in mind for their viewers — CraveTV works with Showtime, which means you can watch Billions, Ray Donovan, Homeland, Nurse Jackie The Opposite of Sex, and other Showtime documentaries and specials.
HBO shows on CraveTV have a more retro vibe, but no complaints here when the entire series run of Sopranos, Six Feet Under, Sex and the City, and Band of Brothers (and more) are still binge-worthy. You'll love the HBO film selection (The Terry Fox Story, Real Women Have Curves, Temple Grandin) especially if you've never had HBO as part of a cable package. I have weekends earmarked for HBO movie watching until my son's high school graduation ceremony and he's 11.
But CraveTV isn't perfect: I've had a few loading issues (but to be fair, not enough to make me mad - yet) and the catalogue isn't as large as Netflix's but it is growing. Much as Netflix does, Crave has frequent new releases and they're decent.
Where Netflix has a large movie database, there are no movies on CraveTV outside of the HBO or Showtime films, and some of the series they offer are playing in perpetuity on cable anyway. However, I liked being able to watch all seasons of Seinfeld or Cheers chronologically, and without commercials. It's a nice throwback and my teenage daughter is now a Frasier fan, thanks to the service. Newer shows like The Goldbergs and Big Bang Theory are available too, so we saved money not having to purchase them through iTunes. We could stream from the network provider but not all American networks have Canadian syndication partners so CraveTV is a simple way to circumvent this roadblock.
There's also no kids-specific content, but honestly, to me that was a plus. It's just one more reason I won't have to fight for tablet time with my kids. Plus, the less Paw Patrol music we need to hear, the better.
All told, I'm happy with what the $7.99 a month gets me, although now that my son has discovered CraveTV has Star Trek originals, I may need to increase my wifi package to unlimited.