Player Two – Grab The Kleenex

Player TwoI’m not one for video games. Loved playing them with my younger brother when I was a kid, but somehow I grew up and fell out of love with them. My love loss was further compounded years later when my 9 year-old nephew kicked my ass playing Call of Duty (I swear to this day that I still didn’t see what I was supposed to be shooting at!!).

But I am soon to become a father for the very first time. So my tendancy for sentimentality has been slowly on the increase these past few months. That’s probably why I really like this advert for Microsoft’s Xbox. I’m not at all expert enought to espouse the pro’s and con’s of one system versus another. I just liked the story behind the ad and the heart strings it was tugging on me when I watch it.

Apparently (I saw “apparently, because it could be true, or it could have been planted by an ad-man) a user on a forum posted a message about how he missed playing with his Dad, who had sadly passed away. He found an old Xbox in the garage and found the ghost of his Dad on one of their favourite games.

It’s a simple but heart warming ad, and if you have any remnants of a soul, thenI defy you to not have a little lump in your throat after you’ve watched this.

Living The Dream….In 28ft

Canadian, David Welsford, doesn’t pay rent, nor does he have to battle traffic each morning on his way to work. He doesn’t even have a full time job. Instead, he’s living his dream on board a 50-year-old wooden boat he restored, called “Lizzy Belle”.

She was built in Novo Scotia, and when David saw her, rotting away on a wharf in Bridgewater, NS, it was love at first sight. The restoration was a labour of love. That was a few years ago, and it was then that he decided to take her out onto the open ocean, give up the luxuries of life on dry-land and trade it in for a life alone on the sea. “For me, what’s more important than having a big house is having a space that makes me feel good,” he says.

This short documentary, filmed by his friend Kevin Fraser, explores David’s unique maritime lifestyle, the sacrifices he’s made and challenges he faces – from putting food on the table and filling his tummy each day, to the loneliness he sometimes experiences or the lack of a romantic relationship with whom he can share his experiences.

“There’s always a way to make money. There’s always a way to live,” he explains. “If I have enough to go and have a beer and I have enough to go to the grocery store, if I can put enough diesel in the tanks of the boat, then I think I’m one of the richest people in the world.”

This is one man’s idea of living the dream. But the message is simple. Do what ever makes you happy. We only get one life, so let’s make sure we live it.

Lizzy Belle_1 Lizzy Belle_2

Bad Ass Barefoot Skiing

Vooray_1 Vooray_2 Vooray_3I don’t know if I’m more impressed with the barefoot skiing, the open cockpit float-plane pulling the barefoot skier, or the pretty girls in the boat admiring the barefoot skier, but this is a really cool video, promoting outdoor clothing company, Vooray’s collection.

Admittedly, it’s from last year. Which means two things…1. I am most DEFINITELY not a “hipster” who is up on all the latest trends, and 2. I am now starting to really show my age 🙁

That being said, the skills shown-off here are nothing short of amazing. I’m especially intrigued as to how the guy was doing push-ups ON THE WATER! I can barely do ONE on the relatively solid structure of my gym’s floor. This bloke was doing it on the water whilst being dragged at a hundred miles an hour across the lake.

But, as a pilot myself, the star of the show has to be that wee float-plane. My friend Ouen once shared the details behind the plane, which is a home-built job, and we’ve harboured a dream of each owning one and taking them on long summer cross-country flights across the bush with the wind literally in our hair. Some day Ouen…..some day 🙂

Skiing Down A Wave

Wave Skiing Wave Skiing_2 Wave Skiing_3 Wave Skiing_4This epic footage of Chuck Patterson skiing down a giant wave off the coast of Maui, Hawaii will surely grab your attention.

Filmed for German sportswear brand Bogner, Patterson takes on the famed big wave surf break on Maui’s north shore.

I think my favourite part is when he uses the ski poles to make it look like he’s outrunning the wave. 🙂

D-Day Landings – Then And Now

Today marks the 70th anniversary of the Normandy landings. On June 6th 1944 the landings, also known universally as D-Day marked the beginning of the Allied invasion of German-occupied France during WW2.

Reuters photographer Chris Helgren compiled archive pictures taken during the invasion and went back to the same places to photograph them as they appear today to commemorate the occasion.

The most striking thing for me when I looked at the photo’s is the contrast between the past and the present. How today’s generation are oblivious to the death and suffering that was endured in the footsteps of their forebears and how, given enough time, the world rebuilt and moved on.

Given the conflicts currently ongoing in Syria, Ukraine, Venezuela, to name but three, there’s no doubt that our future generations will no doubt find themselves pondering the same thoughts and discussing the utter futility of war.

To view more of Chris Helgen’s photo’s click here.

Normandy then and now 1Normandy then and now 2Normandy then and now 5Normandy then and now 6Normandy then and now 7Normandy then and now 4 Normandy then and now 3 Normandy then and now 8

The Wedding Singer

Wedding SingerTom Fletcher married his beautiful wife, Giovanna, in May last year (2012). And not one for public speaking, he thought he’d cheat a little and work with his strengths….which just happens to be song writing. Tom is the lead vocalist in the UK band McFly.

I think you’ll agree that he did an amazing job on the day. And almost 12 million other You Tube viewers seem to agree.

Congratulations Tom and Giovanna, and thanks for sharing this wonderful video with us, and you’ve given new meaning to the term “The Wedding Singer” 🙂

Black Rhino Standoff

South African, Kim Wolhunter, a renowned wildlife film-maker, was shooting in South African bush for Discovery’s “Man, Cheetah, Wild” when they happened upon a Black Rhino.

Black Rhino have a notorious reputation for being aggressive and will readily charge at anything it perceives to be a threat. And this particular Rhino took a misliking to this cucumber cool South African.

Find out who wins the stand-off by watching the video.

Black Rhino Standoff