Macy’s 87th Thanksgiving Day Parade

This morning, NBC brought the Thanksgiving celebration to all of our hearts with Macy’s 87th Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City.

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The parade was almost balloon-less this year due to the wind gusts in NYC today. Balloons were flown lower than usual as a precaution.

The festivities began on television at 9 a.m. with the Macy’s Great American Marching Band’s instrumental version of Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ “Can’t Hold Us.”

It was a great start to the morning!

Here are ten other great performances/floats/balloons featured in the parade:

1. Kinky Boots “Raise You Up”/”Just Be”: The performance from the cast of the Broadway musical Kinky Boots stirred a bit of controversy…

Regardless, I think the performace was great. Those guys dance really well in high heeled boots! I do understand how that can be hard to explain to young children.

2. The Sound of Music “16 Going on 17” (Leisl and Rolf): The performance of “16 Going on 17” by Leisl and Rolf from The Sound of Music was simply adorable. The kiss at the end was so sweet!

3. All That! Cloggers: The all male group of cloggers from South Carolina did a fantastic job. Is there any chance you guys would be willing to let a female join in? (Wink, wink, nudge, nudge)

4. Cher Lloyd “I Wish”: Cher Lloyd performed her song “I Wish” while on board the Hess float this year. Loved it!

5. Richard Simmons: I think this one was more odd than great. Russel Simmons rode passed the green carpet inside of a tortoise while kicking his legs up and down. I don’t quite know how to understand this.

6. J.U.M.P.: Okay, I know some people didn’t like them, but I thought they were really cool. J.U.M.P. (Jumpers United for Macy’s Parade) skipped rope to Calvin Harris and Ellie Goulding’s “I Need Your Love.” (Maybe I liked them so much because the only sport I can actually play well is jump rope. I felt a connection. What can I say?)

7. South Shore Drill Team: I thoroughly enjoyed the South Shore Drill’s routine to Usher’s “Euphoria.” They’ve got some great moves!

8. Despicable Me Cast: I can’t get enough of those cute little minions! The minions, Gru and the evil purple minion danced on their float to Pharrell Williams’ “Happy,” a song from the Despicable Me 2 soundtrack.

9. Ariana Grande “Last Christmas”: I hadn’t yet heard Ariana Grande’s version of “Last Christmas” before her performance on the Dora float this morning. I can’t say I didn’t like the R&B spin she put on the song!

10. Elf on the Shelf: The Elf on the Shelf balloon is one of the largest balloons to ever be part of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. I think this is the cutest elf I’ve ever seen!

As usual, the grand finale was Santa and Mrs. Claus, the cutest couple of the morning (well, afternoon at this point). Santa’s still looking healthy, and so does Mrs. Claus!

Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Hanukkah! I’m thankful for all of my wonderful Whisper Box fans! You guys are awesome!

Have a great holiday!

The High Line NYC in the Fall

The last time I visited the High Line was May of this year. It was springtime, so all of the flowers were in full bloom and the colors were so bright and lively.

When I visited this month, most of the flowers were drying up. Instead of the bright pinks and orange flowers that are around in the spring, fall at the High Line looks very brown, yellow, red, and green.

It’s still quite beautiful. Just a different kind of beautiful.

High Line Comparison

November vs. May at the High Line NYC

To add to the differences, this time I entered High Line at 23rd Street and walked down to 13th. Last time, I walked with my friends from 18th Street up to 23rd.

Since I walked farther down this time, I saw three new interesting things.

Liquor Store Attendant by George Condo

Liquor Store Attendant by George Condo

1. Let’s just say this is a very interesting looking liquor store attendant.

Drag Queen Florent Morellet (aka Queen of the Meatpacking District) by John Ahearn

Drag Queen Florent Morellet (aka Queen of the Meatpacking District) by John Ahearn

2. Florent Morellet’s eyes follow you when you move around in front of him. I know for a fact that I’m wasn’t just seeing things, because my friend Vickie said the same.

Pan by Sean Landers

Pan by Sean Landers

3. Greek mythology on the High Line! I was instantly reminded of Mr. Tumnus from The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe.

I was shocked to see how different the High Line looks when the season changes. Maybe I’ll go see how it looks covered in snow this winter.

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Barnes and Noble Dream Class: Comedy Writer Alida Nugent’s “Crucial Info for Surviving Your 20s”

Alida Nugent
From: togather.com

On October 1st, I received an email from the Hofstra Barnes and Noble Bookstore about a Dream Class that students could vote to bring to campus.

Ask me again which courses were available or which one I voted for. I honestly can’t remember, but I do remember claiming my free ticket when I read that we won the BNC127 course “Crucial Info For Surviving Your 20s.”

The first 20 students were able to snag free tickets to the event with speaker Alida Nugent, a 25 year old blogger and comedy writer from Brooklyn, NY. She is the author of Don’t Worry, It Gets Worse and the genius behind the blog The Frenemy.

Alida Nugent had quite the list of tips for us that night.

She’s very serious about helping 20somethings not screw up after college. She told us that one night, as she was typing up a paper with some alcohol in hand, she accidentally spilled it all over her computer causing her to lose all of her files.

So her first tip, of course, was backup your computer.

    Event page for BNC127 "Crucial Info for Surviving Your 20s" on Nov. 20th

Event page for BNC127 “Crucial Info for Surviving Your 20s” on Nov. 20th

There were a few other tips that were worth noting from her speech:

1. Throw away some of your clothes after college. When you move into a NYC apartment, half of your clothes won’t fit, and more than half of them are no longer appropriate for your age.

2. Learn how to cook a meal under $10. “Just put sh*t on starch,” she recommends.

3. Get a plant before you get a pet and see if you can take care of it.

4. Keep a list of at least 5 phone numbers in your wallet. (She left her phone and keys in her apartment once, and ended up having to ask her boss to Facebook message her roommate to let her in. “How professional,” she joked).

5. Don’t think that being in your 20s means you can’t still be a kid sometimes. “So eat ice cream for dinner, stay on Facebook all day, and go up to the roof and scream your heart out” if you want to.

20 is just the beginning. Apparently, it gets worse!

Follow Alida Nugent on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, and Instagram.

This Week in Music: Trails and Ways’ “Lost” (Frank Ocean Cover)

trails and ways

Today I had the wonderful pleasure of coming across the Soundcloud link to Trails and Way’s cover of Frank Ocean’s “Lost.”

I first heard of the Brazilian band Trails and Way’s while listening to the Majestic Casual playlist on YouTube. After hearing their song “Tereza,” I couldn’t stop listening to their music!

The band took Frank Ocean’s “Lost” and put an interesting multicultural spin on it. The verses of the song are sung in Brazilian Portuguese, and the chorus is in English. The Portuguese gives the song a nice island paradise feel.  A little bit of an accent is present in the chorus, which is quite nice.

The instrumentation of this cover is superb. The band fuses together the bass, piano, and drums to create a rich bossa nova vibe. With it’s medium tempo, it’s the perfect song to relax yourself after a long day.

I just love the chorus when they sing,

Now you’re lost
Lost in the heat of it all
Girl you know you’re lost
Lost in the thrill of it all
Miami, Amsterdam
Tokyo, Spain, lost
Los Angeles, India
Lost on a train, lost.

This cover will make you feel like you just took a trip around the world in your headphones!

Those of you who know and love the Frank Ocean version of this track are sure to enjoy this vamped up Brazilian edition. Check it out below.

 

Jennifer Lawrence Comforts Crying Fan at ‘Hunger Games: Catching Fire’ Premiere

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As if we didn’t already love Jennifer Lawrence to pieces, the Hunger Games actress stepped off the red carpet in London last night to comfort a crying fan.

Lawrence was in the middle of an interview outside the Odeon Leicester Square in London when she saw the young girl nearly bawling her eyes out in awe of her presence. She was dying to meet her Hunger Games heroine, and luckily, her dream came true.

jlaw crying fan

In the video, JLaw is seen taking pictures with the little girl and signing autographs for her.

She went right back to the interview once the little girl was satisfied with her fifteen seconds of JLaw.

For those of you who didn’t notice, Jennifer Lawrence is sporting a new pixie cut hairdo.

Too many people are commenting on the similarities to Miley Cyrus’ hairstyle.

Pixie cut or long haired, Jennifer Lawrence is still the same sweet, kind hearted person we all know and love.

Hunger Games: Catching Fire opens on November 22nd in the United States.

This Week in Music: Justin Bieber’s Music Monday Track “Bad Day”

Bad Day Art

Justin Bieber’s new Music Monday track, “Bad Day,” dropped early this morning at 12:01 am.

Music Monday is Bieber’s new way of releasing his album. Every Monday from October 7th until mid-December, fans get a song from the singer, totaling ten brand new tracks.

As his manager, Scooter Braun stated in an interview with Billboard:

“Justin had this complete body of work that was very different from the stuff he had done in the past — very R&B-driven, personal songs, not necessarily songs that he was thinking of as radio records. That’s why he called them ‘journals.’ They’re very, very personal to what he’s been feeling over the last six months, going through a tough time. If you listen to the lyrics in these songs — “Heartbreaker,” “All That Matters” — he’s pouring his heart out. When I looked at that, I looked at it as, “He didn’t write one journal.” He wrote them in different days, [with] different emotions at different points, and I wanted people to experience what he was feeling, week to week… As each week comes, people will have a different type of song, and understand the different experience he’s going through week to week.”

Said “journals” sound like a mating call to his ex-girlfriend, Selena Gomez, as he sings songs such as “Heartbreaker” and “Recovery” to beg her forgiveness.

Bieber’s now mature voice might drive the ladies absolutely insane. His voice coach has worked miracles to bring his boyish charm to manhood.

Monday, November 4th’s song released for the series is called “Bad Day,” echoing the infamous David Powter tune.

Bieber’s “Bad Day” begins with a sweet, romantic guitar melody. The song is more of a ballad with its slow tempo and legato vocals.

Justin Bieber goes the extra mile to show off his voice with a nice falsetto in the hook as he sings, “Didn’t waste any time /  Like you had already made up your mind,” and later, “And I didn’t think it was over / Until you walked away.”

This song is the shortest of the series so far, coming in just under 2:30. The other Music Monday tracks are over three minutes long.

The R&B feel of “Recovery” and “Heartbreaker” fit Bieber’s style better. “Bad Day” didn’t really strike a chord with me this week.

Enjoy “Bad Day” and the other Music Monday tracks on Spotify.