Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Oooh, L.A.

I wanted something light to read while I was away. I just needed a book that I could escape into before bed, to take my mind off work and stresses, so I decided to pick up my girl Lauren Conrad's first book, "L.A. Candy" last week. I wasn't quite sure what to expect, but I figured since I heart LC and The Hills, plus the fact that it spent some time at the top of the New York Times bestseller list, it was worth a shot.

"L.A. Candy" is loosely based on the reality star turned designer turned best selling author's life. It tells the story of a young girl named Jane Roberts who moves to L.A. and unexpectedly becomes the star of a reality television show. Was it deeply thought provoking or absolutely brilliant? Not exactly. But it certainly was entertaining. I totally enjoyed it and I'll admit, I'm pretty pumped for the sequel. Lauren is currently working on the second installment of her series. "It picks up where the first left off, " she says. " I signed a three-book deal, so this is all part of the same story. The second book will be more dramatic than the first. It’s a relief, because I didn’t have to worry about character introductions."

Art definitely imitates life. "Some of the characters may symbolize people in my life," LC has said, "but it is in no way calling anyone out." I don't know. It really felt to me like it was a glimpse behind the scenes of Laguna Beach and The Hills. I think that's why I got so into it. Adds the star, "I've always loved books that I could lose myself in, ones that would transport me to another place, but had characters I could relate to. So, I'm so excited to have this opportunity to write books like that for other readers." That's what we all love about Lauren, I think- we can relate to her. She's someone you'd want to be friends with and hang out with. Well, at least I would. It's her "realness" that we're attracted to. “Imperfection is relatable,” Lauren explains. “If you look at the show, there are a lot of skinny girls with big boobs, and they’re always perfect. I don’t think perfect is relatable. I’ve screwed up a lot.” Indeed, she has screwed up so often, she wanted to publish a book titled How Not to Date “and basically write down every mistake I’ve ever made.” Ha, I would read that too.

LC has had the last five years of her life documented on national television. Since she only turned 23 in February, this means that nearly 22 percent of LC’s time on earth has been transmitted to homes around the world. And that’s not including the countless tabloid articles chronicling her anxieties about her work (at Teen Vogue and fashion-public-relations firm People’s Revolution), her friends (Whitney Port, Audrina Patridge, and Lo Bosworth among them), her frenemies (Heidi Pratt), and, of course, her love life. Her novel does seem to be a peek at what happens on the other side of the reality show, and the line between what is shown on camera and what happens when the cameras aren't rolling.

Word on the web this week is that LC's book could be made into a feature film, if the pieces fall into place. If that happens, I'm quite sure I'll be able to twist Mel's arm to join me at the theatre on opening night.

I encourage you to pick up the book if you're a fan of Lauren's, it's a fantastic summer read.

**Photos are not property of Work In Progress. They have been taken from various websites. If your photo has not been credited and you would like it to be, please e-mail me.**

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Losing Faith, Gaining Courage

"Sometimes you climb out of bed in the morning and think, I’m not going to make it, but then you laugh inside remembering all the times you’ve felt that way."
-charles bukowski

There have been a lot of miles in the last few weeks. I still have a couple more weeks ahead that will be full of a lot of this:

...and more. Being home by no means signifies the end of the madness, but I sure am happy to be back in Vancouver.

We are always rushing, rushing, rushing and forgetting to feel the world beneath our feet, the blood in our veins. Maybe if we could all. just. stop and let ourselves breathe, we could smile more and have hearts that pump, pump, pump to a new beat.

How about this for a new morning routine?

1) Wake up.
2) Lay in your bed and look at the ceiling.
3) Say: hello world, hello day.
4) Listen to your breathing.
Feel the blood in your veins.
Notice your skin waking up with you.
3) Stand and stretch.
Side to side.
Touch your toes.
Touch the earth.
Touch the sky.
4) Look in the mirror.
Say hello to yourself.
Give yourself one compliment.

Photo: Sarah Ashley

Sunday, July 26, 2009

My Saskatoon Celebrity Sighting

Photo: StarPulse

Exhausted and ready for home, I sat at a table across from Alfred at the Saskatoon airport this morning. As I nibbled on a Tim Horton's breakfast sandwich and looked up to reach for my cup of tea, I noticed a striking woman walking towards the next table. She caught my eye immediately; tall and voluptuous, dressed in a black t-shirt, faded blue jeans and black Tory Burch flip flops. Her thick, luscious, cascading blonde hair fell below her shoulders and her perfect face looked like it had come right off a magazine cover. She sat down at the next table with a small group of people. I nudged Alfie and lowered my voice to a whisper.

"Hey! Do you watch Gene Simmons Family Jewels?" I asked, my eyes still fixed on the next table.

"The reality show?" Alfie asked, scrunching up his face in confusion.

"Yeah." I continued whispering, without taking my eyes off her, "That woman over there looks so much like Shannon know, Gene Simmons' woman? I think it's her!" I didn't want to point, nor did I want him to turn around in an obvious fashion to get a look, but I needed confirmation. The more I stared (yes, I have a staring problem...apparently it becomes a more serious problem when celebrities are involved) I became certain that it was indeed the 1982 Playmate of the Year herself. I just knew it was. I watch their show all the time. I love it, and I love her.

Finally Alfie was able to crane his neck around to get a glimpse without drawing any attention. "Yep, it's her," he said matter-of-factly as he turned back around to face me. He nodded his head with complete certainty. "She's Canadian. It's her."

Since I never believe Alfie right away, even though he's usually right, I quickly typed her name into Google on my BlackBerry. I discovered that she was born and raised in Newfoundland and that she graduated from Mount Royal Collegiate in Saskatoon. It had to be her!

A few minutes later an awkward, young girl in a Tim Horton's uniform approached the glamazon's table and held out a piece of paper and a pen. I could practically see the poor, young girl's heart beating out of her chest. Shannon put down her iPhone, which she'd been busy texting on, took the pen and paper from the shaking girl, smiled graciously and signed the autograph. The girl walked away with a huge grin spread across her face.

Alfred dared me to go up and talk to Shannon, or to get my photo taken with her. "Blog material!" he teased. He knows me too well. I wanted to, but I also felt like an idiot. As much as I'm intrigued by certain celebrities, I'm just not one to go up and bother people. I shook my head and the two of us headed off through security.

It seemed that everybody in the airport was buzzing about Shannon Tweed. Even the security guys wanted to get her autograph and talked about what a fox she is as they scanned our bags and waved us through the metal detectors. I wondered if we'd see her again before our flight took off.

Photo: The Insider

Sure enough, about 15 minutes later, up the escalator she came with her travel group. They all sat down right at our gate. A few more people approached her for autographs and photos. Others just pointed and whispered and tried to sit near her. She didn't seem to mind, but hardly put down her iPhone unless somebody came right up.

I sat there across the room star struck. I was tweeting and texting my Dad about my celeb sighting, and then all of a sudden I looked over and she was gone. "Damn it!" I said out loud, " I missed my chance!"...even though I knew I wouldn't really have done anything about it anyway.

Photo: Zimbio

Our boarding time was drawing closer, so I figured that I better hit up the ladies' room before the flight. As I came out of the stall, it just so happened that Ms. Tweed was coming out of the next one at the exact same time. We walked up to the row of sinks and began washing our hands pretty much in unison. I glanced up at her in the mirror and she was already smiling back at me. Nervously I said, "Hi Shannon! I'm a big fan of your show..." or something equally dorky. "It's a real pleasure to meet you."

She thanked me and then we chatted back and forth for a few minutes (I'll be damned if I remember exactly what we said) but I definitely did my nervous laugh at least a couple of times. She was so sweet and friendly and jaw-droppingly beautiful. She's 52 years old and looks just fabulous., so glamourous. Clearly, there was no photo op, as I didn't think it would be appropriate to whip out my camera in the bathroom, but I was secretly pleased that I got a chance to talk to her without feeling like I was interrupting or being intrusive. I came back to our seats in the waiting area beaming. Alfie didn't even have to ask.

My real moment of glory came a little later though...
It turned out that she was on our flight. As we were getting ready to board the plane, a couple of people (who obviously didn't know who Shannon was) tried to cut in front of her and her group in the lineup (we were standing right behind them) so I made a little joke about the "budgers" and Shannon and her whole crew cracked up. You see, it really doesn't take much more than getting a genuine laugh to make me feel cool for a second. (Which is probably why I still dream of being cast on Saturday Night Live one day...or maybe I should just pitch my own reality show...)

So that, my friends, is the story of my Saskatoon celebrity sighting of the day. Conclusion: Shannon Tweed is one hot mama.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Keeping Up With Kim

One celebrity who has been on my radar lately is Kim Kardashian. Her personal style is one that I have seen evolve- and she is looking more fabulous than ever these days. Her style is city chic mixed with seductive glamour. She dresses up and down to perfection. The reality television princess prides herself on being sexy and alluring- which she does very well. Unlike most curvy women, Kim strives to enhance her assets and draw attention to them in a positive way. She has a hot body and really dresses to flatter it. Her head to toe is always impeccable- she understands that a great bag and shoes really pull a look together and take it to the next level. I have a great appreciation for attention to detail and Kim definitely has it.

Kim comes across as very down to earth, in my opinion. She connects with friends and fans through her daily Twitter updates and writes blog posts regularly on her official website, where she shares tons of awesome fashion, fitness, diet and beauty tips and tricks, plus as a ton of personal stories and photos. I also must admit that Kim has been a motivating factor for me to get my butt to the gym, at times. She works hard to keep her body in shape and tweets about it all the time. She also released a series of workout DVDs called Fit In Your Jeans By Friday, from which I've incorporated many moves into my own workouts, especially when I'm travelling.

Kim also started a charity auction, for which puts her outfits and accessories up on eBay. A portion of auction proceeds benefit The Dream Foundation, the world’s largest “wish granting” organization for adults battling life-threatening illnesses. She calls it "Kim's Closet" and you can access the page by clicking here She feels that it's a way to give back, offering her fans the chance to bid on some of her outfits, shoes, handbags, and much more, with proceeds going straight to this excellent cause.

Make sure that you tune in to the latest season of Keeping Up With The Kardashians to check out what Kim and her family are up to (as well as what they're wearing!)

**Photos are not property of Work In Progress. They have been taken from various websites. If your photo has not been credited and you would like it to be, please e-mail me.**

Monday, July 20, 2009

Happy Now

After a delicious pre-concert nosh on the patio at Section 3, Melissa and I skipped on over to The Garage last Saturday night for a fun filled evening of 90s ska-pop nostalgia.

Through three glittery costume changes, Gwen Stefani and No Doubt took us back in time. Ms. Stefani, at 39 years old with her peroxide blond hair tied up in knots on her head, looked absolutely incredible. An animated and chatty performer, Gwen (as I've said before) seems more in her element with the band than she does when she's out doing her solo thing. Her charisma shined on every number. After a five-year absence during which Stefani started a family and kicked a solo career into high gear, the band returned looking and sounding better than ever. While Young’s appearance (bare chest, heavy makeup and a gelled Mohawk) remains full-on flaky, Stefani, Dumont and Kanal were resplendent in white-hot attire matching a well-designed and wide-open-spaces stage that allowed for a lot of running, high-kicking, and group calisthenics.

With no new album to push this go around, the quartet, which was aided by a trumpeter and trombonist, stuck to the hits. The bouncy "Spiderwebs" opened the 90-minute set that also included near-studio-perfect renditions of favourites like "Hella Good," "Underneath It All," "Running" and "Simple Kind of Life." The crowd gleefully transformed the anthems "Just a Girl" and "Don't Speak" into massive sing a-longs.

The show felt inspired, even though it was a reunion. Melissa and I shook our booties and sang along to every single song. It was hands down, one of the best shows I've ever seen- no doubt about it. (Ha)

Sunday, July 19, 2009


Last night's No Doubt show was completely amazing. I actually prefer to see Gwennie Gwen with the band, as opposed to doing her solo thing. She's absolutely unreal live (so are her abs, even after two kids, just in case you were wondering). Gwen's stage presence is really what made me fall in love with No Doubt way back when. I'm too beat to blog tonight, but I couldn't resist sharing a photo from the show. Check back for a full report and more photos sometime this week.

Friday, July 17, 2009

“Nothing is exactly as it seems, nor is it otherwise”

I'm right back into the full swing of craziness at work. Travel, travel, show, show, packing and unpacking. Truth be told, as hectic as it is, this is also what I enjoy most about my job. I don't think I'd want it to always be like this, but by the time the madness begins, I'm usually ready for it. I'm home right now for two days in between trips. Next week, I'm off to the prairies with a zillion garment bags in tow. Sell or die.

via Jon McGregor:

"You must always look with both of your eyes
and listen with both of your ears. This is a very big world
and there are many many things you could miss if you are not careful. There are remarkable things all the time, right in front of us,
but our eyes have like clouds over the sun
and our lives are paler and poorer if we do not see them
for what they are. If nobody speaks of remarkable things,
how can they be called remarkable?"

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Skatepark Saturday

The DC King Of Series will be landing in Vancouver this summer on August 22 - 23, 2009. DC’s King Of Series is a global grassroots skateboarding contest which tours to new skate spots all over the world, welcoming the city’s best unsponsored skateboarders to compete in a jam format contest. A win at these contests gives undiscovered street skaters more than just their local city’s respect.

“We are super excited to combine the DC Nationals final contest with the DC King Of series this year,” says Trevn Sharp, DC's Canadian Skate Team Manager. “I have already seen tons of sick skating and I am sure the level of skating at the Finals will be even higher. I’m really looking forward to seeing who will be crowned the King Of Vancouver this August.”

The DC Nationals City Qualifiers will send the top 5 skateboarders from each contest to attend the King Of Vancouver, acting as the final stage for this summer’s series. In order to skate in the King Of Vancouver, skateboarders must qualify at a City Qualifier. The winner of the King Of Vancouver will walk away with instant global exposure throughout the skate world, a piece of the $10,000 cash purse and a spot on DC’s newly formed DC Kings Team, DC’s latest skate squad based completely off DC King Of contest winners. They will also be eligible to receive an article in Color Magazine, where they will be partnered with some of the best photographers and writers in the industry.

Yesterday I rounded up the troops and headed out to Port Coquitlam to check out the Vancouver City Qualifier, which was happening at the Railside Skatepark. It was the perfect Saturday afternoon: sunshine, friends, fun and incredible skating.

There are 4 City Qualifiers still to take place, the next being this coming weekend in Regina.

For more information and full contest details visit DC Nationals. Videos from all of the City Qualifiers will be available at You can also follow @DCNationals on Twitter for regular updates.

You can read Trevn Sharp's blog about the Poco event, which is included in his series about the national contest here.