Pop Culture & Current Events

RIP Adam Yauch, the Beastie Boys MCA

Sad news today as we have just heard of the passing of the Beastie Boys MCA, Adam Yauch. He was 47 and had been battling cancer, which we learned about back in 2009. Here is more from USAToday: The music world is mourning again. Adam Yauch, known as Beastie Boys rapper MCA, has died. GlobalGrind.com, Russell Simmon’s website, reports that Yauch died after a long battle with cancer. He was 47. In 2009, Yauch announced he was being treated for…


May the 4th Be With You as Donny & Marie Do Star Wars!

If you go back 35 years to the late 70’s, it seemed that everyone had a variety show – and one of the best things was that they were all live. I loved watching the Carol Burnett show, and one of the best parts was that Harvey Korman could never keep a straight face once Burnett and Tim Conway got going. Donny & Marie had an enormously popular variety show in the late 70’s based around their singing, dancing, charming…


Belgian ‘Responsible Young Drivers’ Puts Drivers Through ‘Mandatory’ Text-While-Driving Course

If you want to convince kids (or adults for that matter) that texting while driving is dangerous, what is the best way? You can read them statistics, show them gruesome videos or death-scene photos … but all of that is a bit dry and academic. Why not put them through tests and tell them that by a new rule they need to prove competency at texting while driving in order to get their license! That is what a group in…


Dark Knight Rises Final Trailer

It has become a common tactic for a film studio to attach a trailer for a hotly anticipated release to help bolster interest in another release. It was already widely known that the final trailer for ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ was planned to show with ‘The Avengers’. But now that ‘The Avengers’ is breaking records in its international release and seem assured a tremendous box office, Warner Brothers has released the final trailer to YouTube! And based on the trailer…


Ellen Reads from ’50 Shades of Grey’

If you follow pop culture and popular books at all, you have heard something about the novel 50 Shades of Grey. If not, I’ll catch you up quickly: it was a Twilight fan-fiction which gained interest from publishers but needed a change of characters, which basically puts a young college student and a rich older man together … but rather than vampires and werewolves we have whips and chains. In fact, Christian Grey makes young Anastasia Steele sign a contract…


Boston’s Fenway Park Celebrates 100 Years of Baseball Traditions

Even as the world was still reeling from the sinking of the ‘unsinkable’ Titanic, a new era dawned in Boston, and in sports history. On April 20, 1912 Fenway Park opened to the public with a capacity of 35,000 seats … and the Boston Red Sox beat the New York Highlanders in an extra-innings thriller to launch the storied baseball stadium. At this point, Fenway Park is the oldest professional baseball stadium. Chicago’s Wrigley Field is the only other ‘classic’…


Music as Art … Sheet Music Art, That Is!

An artistic duo called ‘People Too’ from Novabrinsk in Russia are known for their amazing papercraft that seeks to bring small scenes to life, but apparently they can also bring sheet music to life as well! We all know that music is art, and therefore sheet music contains art … but it is amazing when the sheet music ITSELF becomes art! The site linked below has more than a dozen examples of great art done in between the stanzas –…


RIP Dick Clark, Timeless Host and Breaker of Boundaries

Although my kids will sadly remember Dick Clark from his post-stroke days, struggling for coherence alongside Ryan Seacrest, he was much more than that in a career that cut across 8 decades. The Dick Clark I grew up with was a force of nature – he started well before my time as the man who brought rock’n’roll to the mainstream, spent 31 years as the host of the amazing American Bandstand, started an empire including American Music Awards, the Pyramid…


The Amazing Story of the First Woman to Officially Run the Boston Marathon

It is hard to think that within my life there was a time when women were essentially forbidden to run a marathon – yet the image above is one of those magical moments caught on film. It shows 20-year old Kathrine Switzer as the first officially entered woman in the Boston Marathon (Roberta Gibb ran as a renegade the year before). And the image shows marathon organizer Jock Semple chasing Switzer and attacking her, reportedly shouting “Get the hell out…


Hilariously Effective Nike ‘I Would Run to You’ Commercial

How often do you see a full 2.5-minute commercial that even as it is obviously selling a brand, makes you stop and fully engage in the story? Well, this new commercial for Nike featuring two lovers who find themselves across the country and missing one another is cute, endearing, and hilarious. It is a great story … and well worth watching and sharing! Here is the description: Nike and W+K Portland put a romantic twist on running, with this 2:30…


Frank Warren’s TED Talk on Half a Million Secrets

There is not a Sunday morning that goes by where I don’t check out the latest offerings from PostSecret, a project started after its creator, Frank Warren, had a dream while visiting Paris in 2003. The idea behind the site is that people send in their secrets anonymously, on 4×6 postcards that they have created themselves. Senders are told to “Reveal anything – as long as it is true and you have never shared it with anyone before.” The beauty of Frank’s…


Ashley Judd Eviscerates the Gossip Industry

Gossip can be a very cruel phenomenon. There is reality, and then there is the truth according to viral videos, Facebook, Us Weekly, and the E! Network. Just this past weekend Sarah and I were in the grocery store, and she commented that the headlines screaming from the checkout magazines were just out of control and invasive. Did it really matter whether Kim Kardashian cheated on her (soon to be ex) husband? Do we really need to know the second…


How the Helicopter Parents Stole Easter

Even though it has been 7 years, I remember it as if it was yesterday. My wife and I were Cub Scout den leaders for each of our kids, and we thought that a cool spring event would be an Easter Egg hunt. We had cleared it with all parents, and all of the kids were excited about the event. We allowed siblings to be involved, and my wife and I stayed up late packing eggs with candy so there…


Nyan Cat Gets an ‘Adventure’ for its First Birthday

Hard to believe that the meme that is Nyan Cat is only one year old today! It is a sign of the fast-moving times that these things go from nothing to everywhere to nothing again so quickly! Here are the basics from Wikipedia: Nyan Cat is the name of a YouTube video uploaded in April 2011, which became an Internet meme. The video merged a Japanese pop song with an animated cartoon cat with the body of a Pop-Tart, flying…


Great Music Videos from Before MTV

Image courtesy of ICanHasCheezburger Many folks think that the birth of the music video can be traced to the launch of MTV … but that really doesn’t make sense when you think about it. I mean, even knowing that MTV started as a small local station before transitioning to a major cable network … how would they have established themselves without existing material? The reality is that there have been music videos produced since the early days of sound-based video….


Apparently Some Critics Want to Call Her ‘Fat’niss

My household has been abuzz after all of us finally saw The Hunger Games this weekend – my wife and I and older son went together on Friday, and younger son went to a birthday party featuring heading to the movie on Saturday. There were a load of highlights – and of course a number of ‘that’s not how they did it in the book’ nitpicks – but overall we loved the movie and thought the casting was key to…


The Hunger Games, Hit or Hype?

image courtesy THG – The Hunger Games Blog at http://thg-thehungergames.blogspot.com/ It seems that everywhere you turn people are talking about the release of the feature film The Hunger Games this week. Here at Gear Diary, we are the same way and we have been burning up the wires talking about it too! Some have read the books, some not. Some think it’s all hype, some not. In the end, we decided to share with you our thoughts going into the release…


Miso Media is the Latest ‘Shark Tank’ Attention, um, Seeker

A couple of weeks ago we wrote about Scott Jordan of SCOTTEVEST appearing on the ABC ‘reality investment’ show ‘Shark Tank’. It was an episode my family had been anticipating all season for a few reasons: Scott Jordan has worked with Dan and Judie in the past, I have several SCOTTEVETST items and LOVE them all, and finally because Scott appeared in all of the previews to be a total arrogant confrontational jerk on the show which we figured meant…


Spin Lists the 30 Most Hated Bands!

Everyone has a list of bands or artists they find over-rated or annoying … but there are also a few that transcend that to be truly HATED. There are a number of reasons – pulling away someone from another group, too much media attention, getting awards or album sales by ripping off others, and countless others. Spin magazine compiled a list of hated bands, and you can head here to check it all out. But you might not want to…


Adult TV Ads Poke Fun at Adult Movie Tropes!

You don’t even have to be a fan of adult movies to know about some of the clichéd plots – a pizza delivery guy comes to the door, and a beautiful woman answers and the next thing you know … well … Anyway, over at AdWeek they have a look at commercials made for the Canadian Adult station ‘Amour’. The spots cannot (obviously) use X-rated content, but still need to lure customers to check out the station. Here is the…


Businessweek Looks at Absurd Slogan Trademarks

I love Bloomberg Businessweek because they have a sense of humor. They cover serious subjects, and then they run with the fun stuff but with a straight face. Hence their very amusing analysis of which catchphrases are trademarked and therefore off-limits (hint: apparently). Seriously. Check out their sample of what phrases have been legally protected: Barbarian Group: “It’s gonna be awesome” Great Clips: “It’s gonna be great” Amscan Holdings: “Who you gonna be?” Bank of New York Mellon: “We should…