Your 2017 Golden Globes Nominees

It’s that time again! Golden Globes and awards season. There are so many talented people nominated this year and I feel like we are really stepping up the game with the addition of competition from cable networks and online streaming but I don’t think we can count network TV out, ever. Just look at the amazing shows we enjoy. I’m hoping the trent of improvement continues and the trend of Social TV strengthens. I enjoy live tweeting with all of you during our favorite shows and especially throughout awards season.

I will be tweeting the Golden Globes tonight from red carpet and throughout the show using #etalkGLOBES from home but I will be headed to LA for Oscars and lots of other fun stuff this year. I hope you all continue to follow along and participate in the events and festivities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are our nominees for tonight. See you online!!

FILM:

Best Picture, Drama

Hacksaw Ridge

Hell or High Water

Lion

Manchester by the Sea

Moonlight

Best Actor, Drama

Casey Affleck – Manchester by the Sea

Joe Edgerton – Loving

Andrew Garfield – Hacksaw Ridge

Viggo Mortensen – Captain Fantastic

Denzel Washington – Fences

 Best Actress, Drama

Amy Adams – Arrival

Jessica Chastain – Miss Sloane

Isabelle Huppert – Elle

Ruth Negga – Loving

Natalie Portman – Jackie

Best Picture, Comedy/Musical

20th Century Women

Florence Foster Jenkins

Deadpool

Sing Street

La La Land

Best Actor, Comedy/Musical

Colin Farrell – The Lobster

Ryan Gosling – La La Land

Hugh Grant – Florence Foster Jenkins

Jonah Hill – War Dogs

Ryan Reynolds – Deadpool

Best Actress, Comedy/Musical

Annette Bening – 20th Century Women

Lily Collins – Rules Don’t Apply

Hailee Steinfeld – Edge of Seventeen

Emma Stone – La La Land

Meryl Streep – Florence Foster Jenkins

Best Supporting Actor

Mahershala Ali – Moonlight

Jeff Bridges – Hell or High Water

Simon Helberg – Florence Foster Jenkins

Dev Patel – Lion

Aaron Taylor-Johnson – Nocturnal Animals

Best Supporting Actress

Viola Davis – Fences

Nicole Kidman – Lion

Octavia Spencer – Hidden Figures

Naomie Harris – Moonlight

Michelle Williams – Manchester by the Sea

Best Director

Damien Chazelle – La La Land

Tom Ford – Nocturnal Animals

Mel Gibson – Hacksaw Ridge

Barry Jenkins – Moonlight

Kenneth Lonergan - Manchester by the Sea

Original Score, Motion Picture

Moonlight

La La Land

Arrival

Lion

Hidden Figures

Best Foreign Language Film

Divines

Elle

Neruda

The Salesman

Toni Erdmann

Best Animated Film

Strings

Moana

My Life as a Zucchini

Sing

Zootopia

Best Screenplay

Damien Chazelle – La La Land

Tom Ford – Nocturnal Animals

Barry Jenkins - Moonlight

Kenneth Lonergan – Manchester by the Sea

Taylor Sheridan – Hell or High Water

Best Original Song, Motion Picture

“Can’t Stop the Feeling” – Trolls

“City of Stars” – La La Land

“Faith” – Sing

“Gold” – Gold

“How Far I’ll Go” – Moana

TELEVISION:

Best Comedy/Musical

Atlanta

Black-ish

Mozart in the Jungle

Transparent

Veep

Best Drama

The Crown

Game of Thrones

Stranger Things

This is Us

Westworld

Best Television Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television

American Crime

The Dresser

The Night Manager

The Night Of

The People vs. OJ Simpson

Best Actor, Drama

Matthew Rhys – The Americans

Billy Bob Thornton – Goliath

Rami Malek – Mr. Robot

Bob Odenkirk – Better Call Saul

Liev Schreiber – Ray Donovan

Best Actress, Drama

Caitriona Balfe – Outlander

Claire Foy – The Crown

Keri Russell – The Americans

Winona Ryder – Stranger Things

Evan Rachel Wood – Westworld

Best Actor, Comedy

Gael Garcia Bernal – Mozart in the Jungle

Anthony Anderson – Black-ish

Donald Glover – Atlanta

Nick Nolte – Graves

Jeffrey Tambor – Transparent

Best Actress, Comedy/Musical

Rachel Bloom – Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

Julia Louis-Dreyfus – Veep

Sarah Jessica Parker – Divorce

Issa Rae – Insecure

Gina Rodriguez – Jane the Virgin

Tracee Ellis Ross – Black-ish

Best Actor, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television

Riz Ahmed – The Night Of

Bryan Cranston – All the Way

John Turturro – The Night Of

Tom Hiddleston – The Night Manager

Courtney B. Vance – The People v. O.J. Simpson

Best Actress, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television

Felicity Huffman – American Crime

Riley Keough – The Girlfriend Experience

Sarah Paulson – The People v. O.J. Simpson

Charlotte Rampling – London Spy

Kerry Washington – Confirmation

Best Supporting Actor in a Series, Limited Series, or Motion Picture Made for Television

Sterling K. Brown – The People v. O.J. Simpson

Hugh Laurie – The Night Manager

John Lithgow – The Crown

Christian Slater – Mr. Robot

John Travolta – The People v. O.J. Simpson

Best Supporting Actress in a Series, Limited Series, or Motion Picture Made for Television

Olivia Colman – The Night Manager

Lena Headey – Game of Thrones

Chrissy Metz – The Is Us

Mandy Moore – This Is Us

Thandie Newton – Westworld

The Art of Leaning

I haven’t done a musings article in a while and I know I don’t blog as much as I should these days. But I try to publish when there is something or someone I feel I want to talk to you about. I could go on about anything and nothing but I’ll leave that up to someone else. I prefer to come to you when something juicy or poignant is in my scope. I’m not sure about you, but I have tuned out many of the personalities who are trying too hard to be chameleons. You were an awkward young gamer and now you’re an older, equally awkward cook? The cuteness is wearing off, but somehow the onesie pajamas stayed.. I’ll just shake my head and move on. There is another post to do there, perhaps. Enough wine and I can do it!

But, don’t let me digress off of the topic that brought me here. 2016 was a very odd year for many of us. I know there were some terrific moments for each of us personally, publicly, privately, individually, and collectively but overall it seems to have left a bad taste in our mouths. What does that have to do with the title I chose for this post? Glad you asked, I’m getting there. In all that was going on in the news, with my family, with friends, and with myself, I began to notice a few things. Even though we have become SO much more social and socially aware, many of us are still so guarded with our feelings, emotions, and circumstances. So much so, that we can’t even articulate some of this to those closest to us.

I’m not advocating that we give up privacy and post all of our trials, tribulations, feelings, and emotions. NO WAY. There is something to be said for privacy, personal space, and keeping most aspects of our personal relationships to ourselves. What I’m seeing is that even with people who are close to us (family, friends, people in our innermost circles) we are still a bit stifled when it comes to expression, especially if we think it will make us look weak or we think it may cause judgment. Where does this come from? I believe it is something we are taught growing up. Especially for men, showing emotions or vulnerability is oftentimes equated with weakness, behavior that makes you less of a man, or something you should be ashamed of.

It can also come from our own personal experiences. When you trust people a number of times and get burned, you definitely and understandably become guarded. Fear keeps you from reaching out, sharing, unburdening yourself of the things that are weighing you down.

The fear that if I tell you this thing that troubles me or the feelings I am feeling, this thing that scares the crap out of me, you will think less of me. We believe people won’t want to be around us or have us in their lives. We think the people we call friends or loved ones will abandon us because we are bad, weird, odd, troubled, tortured, weak. Maybe we think they will think we are too much work when in reality, if they love us, they are already thinking we are worth the effort.

In my experience, most times the thing that is crippling us more than the actual secret we keep is the fear of the reaction to our story or our feelings. If someone truly cares about you, no story you tell them will make you repulsive or undesirable to them, nothing you are feeling will be discounted by them. In cases where people have trusted me with their “thing” (and everyone has a “thing”) it has endeared them to me even more. When someone entrusts you with the very story or feelings that make them feel most impotent, it is a powerful moment between the two of you. I respect those friends who have pushed past that hurdle to speak their truth. I’ve watched them as they struggled with the words, looking at me for reaction because they just knew I’d shudder and then make an excuse to leave so I can get far away from them. They expect you’d never speak to them again. BUT, for me, it has had the opposite affect. I love them even more, I admire and respect them, I hold them in the highest esteem.

Unless you are going to tell me you have bodies hidden in places or you’ve tortured people in your past, I really don’t think there are many things I can’t handle hearing. I don’t think there are many hurdles that friends can’t help friends overcome. The sad part is, what I see and feel so often now, people are walking around with these things bottled up inside like their world will end if they give it a voice.

I think some friendships are actually lost because of a fear that a person can’t handle us at our raw, unfiltered base. Eventually, we start to push the people who care about us most away and sometimes we even realize we are doing it. It’s SO contradictory to say or think that someone we know cares for us deeply wouldn’t be able to handle this or do everything in their power to understand where we are coming from.

Again, I am not talking about posting such things on our Facebook pages, blogging about it, or tweeting it up, but I am hoping we can find a way to break through to the trust we need to have between the select few we hold dear because we know they are the real deal. I think it’s worth a shot even though the thought of it can be crippling. Opening up, learning the art of leaning on another human being, can be horrific if you think about it too much. Especially if you’ve trusted, leaned, and were left to fall. But even in those instances, we were taught that those people weren’t the lifers who will stand by us. We were given the opportunity to let them go or perhaps keep them around in a different capacity. Not everyone is meant to share burdens and that’s ok too. But no one is meant to carry burdens alone.

The other part of this is that when we get burned, we may allow the experience to cause us to unjustly judge someone else without giving them a proper chance to prove themselves. I don’t think everyone has the gift of empathy or knows how to tap into it but as someone who has experience with it, I can tell you that knowing someone is troubled who won’t share it with you can be a little distracting. This takes time to work through so that the empathic one can get past the elephant in the room and remain close to the friend, lover, or family member until they come around.

Have any of you experienced what I am talking about from either end? Have you been the one who knows something is up and is wishing the other person would trust you? Have you been the person who thinks someone is going to run screaming if you tell them your own secret? Have you trusted someone only to learn they weren’t the person you should have opened up to?

What advice would you give someone on either side of the situation?

Or are you of the mind that we should just keep it bottle up and maybe we don’t need to be so open and connected?

I’m curious to see where our enlightenment is headed. I’m hoping it opens us up enough that we can begin to remove the stigmas we’ve created around certain experiences that are becoming more common. Anxiety and depression are two things I can think of that still seem to be issues that shouldn’t be. I have a feeling if we were made to feel comfortable to talk freely about them, we’d find out almost everyone has experiences that are similar and uniting instead of dividing. I’m hoping 2017 is about broadening our knowledge of the situations other people are in and building bridges that give support to them rather than causing them to feel they need to stay isolated when it comes to certain topics.

Anyway, that’s what has been weighing on my mind for a better part of 2016. What are some topics that were weighing on your mind throughout the year? That still have you thinking?

It takes real courage to allow yourself to be vulnerable and any person worth your time should admire you for that. My hope is that we take time to have conversations with each other that go deeper than the usual pleasantries. That we find people who we can truly trust and that we are those people to someone. It is a wonderful feeling to be able to lean on someone and know that they got you and it is an equally wonderful feeling to be that person for someone else. Let’s learn the art of leaning………

 

FeiyuTech SPG PLUS Handheld Gimbal Rig Review survived a NYC wind storm

If you are looking for a last minute gift for an iPhone filmmaker in you life or you are an iPhone filmmaker who received a gift card and need an idea of what to spend it on, I think I have the perfect idea for you! The SPG PLUS Handheld Gimbal Rig is amazing for expert video content creator and those who want to get started. For me, one of the hassles I have with handheld video recording is the editing afterwards to make sure its stabilized. Especially if you are filming for an extended period of time or filming in a crowded area where you may be bumped into (like on a red carpet).

I recently received the Gimbal Rig from the good people at FeiyuTech and set out to get some pictures and video of what I thought would be a pretty nice day at the beach in NYC. When I left, the sky was fairly clear but by the time I got there, as is typical for winter months in NYC, a storm began to brew. The temperatures dropped considerably within a half hour and the sky started darkening as clouds rolled in. Thankfully, the temperatures didn’t drop low enough to cause snow but the winds really kicked up, especially at the beach. I took shelter because, like all of us, I am always concerned with the safety of my iPhone and decided to try out the gimbal to see how the winds would affect it. Unfortunately, it started pouring before I got a video but I did get to snap a few pictures

Taken with the steadiness from the SPG plus 3-Axis Gimbal Rig for iPhone

to test it out.

For those of you in the know and those of you who just love cool tech features the FeiyuTech comes equipped with the following perks:

- a balancing mechanism that ensures stabilized and steady video

- Two simple buttons that control all features. A Bluetooth button to control the iPhone’s shutter and a function button to control on/off modes.

- A joystick to control the iPhones motion, INCLUDING pan, roll, and tilt.

- Automatic horizontal and vertical screen adjustments

- Five and one quarter inch screw jacks to attach lights, microphones, and other accessories (so, they really have thought of everything)

- The ICR 22650 battery provides 8 hours of shooting time (which may actually be more than your iPhone battery will last during shooting without a charge).

- And my very favorite thing, FeiyuTech On and FY settings app, which allows you to initialize calibration, update firmware, and personalize various parameters through your phone. (Don’t worry, as a not-so-exprienced video tech, it didn’t have to make sense to me in order for it to work).

Here are your specs:

Tilting angle: 320 degrees

Rolling Angle: 100 degrees

Panning angle: a full 360 degrees

Timing increments: 2 degrees/second to 75 degrees/second

Panning increments: 3 degrees/second to 150 degrees/second

Usage time: 8 hours (again, I think that is longer than the actual iPhone battery will last if you are using it for pictures or video)

Adaption: iPhone 5/5s/5c or later

Weight: 51g not including battery and iPhone, but don’t worry, you’ll still need to do arms at the gym. This isn’t heavy enough to replace that.

To test the video capabilities, I decided to take the Gimbal Rig along with me to my parents’ house in Pennsylvania for the Christmas holiday weekend. Here it is in action (I took the video of me taking the video with my Snapchat Spectacles) Just Click on the description to view:

Now, here is the video footage from my iPhone. Again, just click on the description to view:

As you can see, the video stays steady and the range of motion is perfect to get all the action. I was lucky there was a car passing while I was filming, normally there isn’t much action on the mountain. If you regularly film for projects or clients, I recommend checking into this product. Even if you are new to video or have been scared of it, this device is so easy to use, I’m sure you will learn with ease and end up with amazing footage just like a pro! It’s priced at $299.95 and is available now at the apple store online!

My Grand time at The Grand Resort and Spa

I recently had the pleasure of staying at The Grand Resort and Spa in Ft Lauderdale, Florida. I was invited to go around the same time I was invited to go to Grail Springs, just outside of Toronto, Canada. I thought they would be two ENTIRELY different experiences but actually they turned out to be very similar. The Grand Resort and Spa is a resort for gay men but I should point out, the spa accepts appointments from anyone and there is a separate entrance from the street. I would recommend their services to anyone. I had a great haircut, an amazing massage and the most fantastic facial. The staff is very experienced and knowlegable about what they do. I was even privy to a conversation about classes they were taking to keep up with their massage skills and education.
Let me tell you more about the resort itself. Upon arriving I entered by the pool, which was just as magnificent as it looks in the pictures. I could totally see contestants from Ru Paul’s Drag Race lined up on the two staircases leading from the sun deck to the pool as they make a grand entrance. I was greeted and checked in very quickly an my name was on a scrolling screen at the front desk to welcome me along with the others that were checking in that day. When I got to my room, I was very pleasanlty surprised. It was like my very own apartment with a full living room, kitchen, and luxurious bedroom. I could absolutely live there and would probably pay top dollar if it were an apartment located in NYC or Los Angeles.
Needless to say, I slept very well so I was read for my Saturday and my three hours at the spa. I headed down for the complimentary breakfast around 9 (ok, maybe closer to 10, the bed was too comfortable). I was once again pleasantly surprised to find out there are coffee stations set up all over the property with Starbucks coffee, which is also part of the breakfast in the common room along with juices, cereal, hot breadfast, fruits, and yogurt.
After breakfast, I toured the grounds a little to find out there are peacful areas all over where you can relax, take the sun, read, or whatever you want. There is also a hot tub in addition to the pool and a clothing optional area for those who enjoy the freedom!
I then got ready for my spa appointment and was notified there would be a BBQ during that time but not to worry, they would come to get me. Sure enough, in between my treatments, I did get to enjoy the food and then headed back for my facial. A guy could get used to be attended to like that and I can definitely get used to feeling relaxed and confident that I look my best.
That evening, I left the property to meet friends for dinner and we happened upon an art show in the area. There is so much to do around the spa because it is located in one of the best areas possible. The choices of food were too much for me to decide so I let my friends pick and we ended up an Rocco’s Tacos and I had NO complaints about that.
Sunday was a day to take in some sun and then head back over to check out the rest of the art show and then head to a friend’s house before my flight home. Everywhere I needed to go outside the spa was very easily accessable by Uber without being overly expensive.
If you are looking for a place to go to relax, the Grand Resort and Spa is the place for you. If you like to party, it’s still a place for you. They do have events and theme weekends, there is always a great group by the pool or by the hottub, and the staff is so helpful when it comes to suggesting things to do in the area if you want to explore a bit. The spa services are a must and completely comparable to services I can receive in NYC or LA for a much highter cost. If you’re a gay man, book a weekend, a week, or however long you’d like. If you are not a gay male, I still suggest you check out the spa, I haven’t been treated that well at a spa in the states in a long time.

That Golden Girls Show is night of nostalgic fun!

Did you know the Golden Girls are back in puppet form? That Golden Girls Puppet Show is running right now at the DR2 Theatre in NYC and it’s an experience any Golden Girls fan should not miss!

Anyone who knows me or follows me on social media knows I am a huge Golden Girls fan. I can quote lines from the show on demand and I sometimes sneak it into conversation or use lines in my own daily dialogues. I had heard there was a puppet show based on the Golden Girls and put in on my “must do” list and shortly after I received an invitation to attend one of the preview shows. I will tell you that the second I read the email, I did not hesitate to respond.

The first thing that got me upon walking into the theater was the set. The living room and kitchen look EXACTLY like they did in the show. I immediately felt like I was at home and at this moment I hoped the evening would be everything the show has been. One of the reasons the Golden Girls was always so special to me is because I used to watch it with my late grandmother. I also watched with my parents and I still do when I visit them. Most nights, I fall asleep with the girls on and when TV Land has a Golden Girls marathon I’ll admit I get a bit too wrapped up in them. Don’t expect me to be ready to go anywhere too early on a Sunday!  You can find them in syndication on Logo, TV Land, and Hallmark Channel all times of the day and night which has made the show available to multiple generations even decades after it went off the air.

The Original show aried from 1985 – 1992 on NBC and was part of the Thursday night line up but then moved to Saturday nights. One description of the Golden Girls reads “Four previously married women live together in Miami, sharing their various experiences together and enjoying themselves despite hard times.” But any true fan of the show knows it was about so much more. They tackled issues like gay marriage, infidelity, agism, women’s rights, gay rights, addiction, homelessness, and politics.
The original cast included Bea Arthur (Dorothy Zbornak), Betty White (Rose Nylund), Rue McClanahan (Blanche Devereaux), and Estelle Getty (Sophia Petrillo) with Herb Edleman as Dorothy’s ex-husband Stan Zbornak.
The puppet version of the girls definitely live up to their TV counterparts and the cast consists of Weston Chandler Long as Dorothy (This particular night Dorothy was played impeccably by Michael LaMasa down to Bea Arthur’s manerisms), Arlee Chadwick as Rose, Cat Greenfield as Blanche, Emmanuelle Zeesman as Sophia, and Zach Kononov as Stan.
Tickets are available now through the end of the year so if you are in New York City or plan to be, you should consider experiencing this evening of laughter and nostalgia. Tickets can be purchased here: http://www.ticketmaster.com/That-Golden-Girls-Show-A-Puppet-tickets/artist/2276879#artist_table_focus.
They even recreated the theme song sequence from the original show:

You’ll be leaving the theater feeling good and singing “Thank you for being a friend” for sure!