Tag Archives: The X-Factor

London Bridges

If I ate my heart out in Italy, then I drank and danced the rest of the time in London.

Last fall marked my first time back in Europe as an adult.  I was already there with my good friend Neil, and my other good friend Areis was flying over from Tampa just to meet us.  (My measurement of knowing you’re getting older: when you constantly make plans with your friends who live in the same city as you to hang out anywhere else but that city.) The plan of attack for those couple of days in London was quite simple: dine, drink, dance, sleep, repeat.

London London Pub
I’ve long had an indescribable connection to and fascination with the U.K.: Their chart-topping recording artists have always filled my earphones.  Popular television shows like Footballers Wives and The X-Factor (and I’m not referring to that abominable U.S. flop that once had Nicole Scherzinger as a judge) were favorites of mine.  Most importantly, my attempt at only speaking in a British accent when inebriated never fails.  (Academy Award winner Gwyneth Paltrow, I am not.)

So here I was in the most-expensive city in the world with two of my best friends, and I only managed to snap the above two photos the entire that I was over there.  (My measurement of knowing you had a great vacation: when you did absolute zero sight-seeing and took less than three photos your entire time overseas.)

Whoever said that New York City is the capital of the world deserves to be fined and imprisoned for uttering such a false statement.  That person deserves to share a prison cell with the same person who said the following false statements about London: (1) They do not like Americans over there, and (2) the food there is disgusting.  Solely judging from the numerous locals I met at the innumerable places that I Facebook checked-in to, visiting from America and having an American accent was a draw.  And every fish & chips, meat pie with mushy peas, and bangers & mash platter that I had was Hoover Wind Tunnel vacuumed up into my belly with delight.  In fact, the only time I ever raised an eyebrow of concern while in London was my aggressive attempt to locate a nightclub that didn’t intentionally play Disney’s Frozen soundtrack, B*Witched, or S Club 7.  I’ve long known that London loves pop music, but little did I know to what extreme I suppose.


“Rather Be” by Clean Bandit ft. Jess Glynne:
 This song was utterly inescapable in London that entire week: being played on every radio station, in every pub and bar, in the hotel lobby, on TV.  The lyrics to “Rather Be” also perfectly sum up the entire magic that was experienced while there.  London, England… there’s no place I’d rather be.

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Festa Italiana 2013

Festa Italiana 2013

The 16th Annual Festa Italiana took place in Ybor City on Sunday, April 7, 2013.  Festivities officially kicked off at The Italian Club’s Wines of Italy event the Thursday prior, and the celebration continued each day until the main event at Centennial Park.  My work is a huge supporter and sponsor of Festa Italiana which amusingly began as my bosses’ picnic for their friends and family.  Today, a staggering 10,000 patrons attend their lil’ Italian festival picnic.

Way before I ever became involved with and worked for Festa,  I remember loving the event which can best be described as an overwhelming experience of food, drinks, culture and people.  To now officially be a part of a local tradition that honors and preserves a culture’s heritage and traditions is rewarding and very worthwhile.

Viva Festa Italiana!

Festa 2013 Group 1Festa 2013 Group 2Festa 2013 Group 3Photos courtesy of Radko Keleman Photography

Please click on an image to view / enlarge:


I have a slight obsession with Olly Murs whose Right Place, Right Time album has been receiving ample play on my iPod.  Olly rose to fame on the UK version of The X-Factor, and conquered the European charts before storming American shores. His current single “Troublemaker” is rapidly racing up the Billboard charts, and he’ll be playing at The RITZ Ybor next week Wednesday, May 8, 2013.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Call My Name” by Cheryl Cole

Image

Oh Cheryl Cole.  How do I love thee!  You were a part of the biggest-selling female group in the UK, (and no I am not referring to the Spice Girls but) Girls Aloud, who were responsible for some of the catchiest pop-ditties this millennium.   You ventured out as a solo artist with two huge hit albums and a string of pop perfection confections.  Your “Fight For This Love” still reigns as one of the best pop songs ever recorded.  You ruled England as their beloved sweetheart when you became a judge on The X-Factor UK which lead to one of the much-coveted judges spots on The X-Factor USA.  Although, I should be upset with you for you leaving The X-Factor USA.  It lead to four torturous months of the grating Nicole Scherzinger (your replacement).  Will.i.am. is now your manager.  You have a new album, your third, A Million Lights, being released next month.  You have a cameo role in the JLo & Cameron Diaz rom-com, What To Expect When You’re Expecting flick this summer.  You reportedly are dropping your ex-hubby’s last name and simply going by Cheryl.  Madonna.  Cher.  Cheryl.  It works.  And you have a sexy new video for “Call My Name,” which was written and produced by current it-boy Calvin Harris, that just hit YouTube.  You own the world right now… well, except for the U.S.  Here’s looking forward to a very successful infiltration onto the American pop culture radar.  If the Kardashians can do it, then the sexiest woman on the planet most certainly can too. You’re almost there baby.

P.S.  The 90’s clothes, style and choreography of your “Call My Name” music video is like a tasty make-out session with nostalgia.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,