1. Music…Matt Nathanson’s Worldwide Hearing Project!
Changing The World One Singer At A Time!
Music is usually our fifth item each week. Not this week! Matt Nathanson is our must listen suggestion this week. It is not only for his music, though. Matt’s music and his collaboration with the Starkey Hearing Clinic has changed thousands of lives worldwide.
360 million people worldwide have hearing problems! Nathanson uses his music to provide hearing aides throughout the world to an ever-increasing number in this group. Matt used his song Headphones and a stirring, heart-tugging video to highlight this project. You are there as he, and a tent full of doctors, change lives. Peru is featured on Headphones as 1,000 people received hearing help in 48 hours. Seeing the faces of young and old now being able to hear will open every wallet and heart. Thanks Matt!
Here are three songs that will introduce you to Matt Nathanson’s guitar lead stylishness.
- Modern Love…This song and video are a great tour to all types of lovers. Each team of lovers in the song share what they like best about their love. This is accomplished using a weird combination of funny and poignant signs held up during the video. Nathanson uses word themes creatively in a number of other videos, too. This, however, is the best rendition by the video design company he employs. 2. Run With Sugarland…The song is about two lovers who run toward each other and the danger of being together that they can’t resist.
3. Heartbreak World…It is time to leave a heartbreak world and move on to make your dreams come true. The reminder is: Stop letting where you are, prevent you from getting where you want to be!
Our musical second place this week goes to Taylor Swift. Taylor Swift’s Shake It Up on her new album 1989 has been rocking every junior and senior high school hallway in Philadelphia this week.
Avril Lavigne’s 90 million listens for Here’s To Never Growing Up would be a first place item on any other week. Rock N Roll is one of Lavigna’s craziest videos. Caution…There is swearing in the song and video.
Jazz and more songstress Mary J. Blige with her new album The London Sessions isn’t far away from the first three recommendations this week, too.
2. Business…Forbes Magazine Salutes Reese Witherspoon!
This Month’s Variety Magazine Follows Suit!
Reese Witherspoon is second to Sandra Bullock on Forbes Magazine’s Best Paid Actress List. Her production company Pacific Standard brings in just as much revenue as her movies. The mega-hit Gone Girl with Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, and Neil Richard Harris has passed the three hundred million mark in revenues worldwide. The movie’s numbers are still growing before moving to DVD and Netflix in two months.
Bruna Papandrea, a business genius in her own right, is the co-lead in Witherspoon’s company. Both women are trying to create a movie environment where women of all ages can take the leads in today’s movies. They have five major projects planned as follow-ups to Gone Girl in the next two years.
Don’t Mess With Texas is Reese Witherspoon’s newest comedy. She is a police officer that teams up with Sofia Vagara, the local felon, to run around Texas. Texas is a very big state if you are looking for a run around the country site to support your movie themes!
Dwayne Johnson (The Rock) leads the list of male movie earners.
3. Television…The Bletchley Circle…Thinking Women! Not The Rule!
Rachael Stirling, Julie Graham, Sophie Rundle, and Anna Maxwell Martin are the Bletchley girls. These four girls were brilliant code breakers in World War II. Their work helped shorten the war and it/they saved thousands of lives. After the war their brilliance and dedication was forgotten faster than the record player and a wine bottle with a cork in it.
The four women were leading a humdrum, can’t get respect from their husbands and families’ life. The all had mindless jobs that were in no way challenging. One husband even bought his wife a puzzle book to keep her busy and to keep her creative thinking in tow and out of his way.
Crime solving came into their circle in the most unexpected way. Local horrific crime activated four amazing minds. Throughout the show, they approached crime in the same way they deciphered codes and secret materials. It is eye opening in the first episodes to see the way they put minute (very small) pieces of information together to support their theories.
Naturally, those around them, especially the local investigators, could not understand their thinking. The same vector and deception analysis they used in the war doesn’t even exist in 1949 crime fighting. How, then, would someone understand them and their new ideas?
You can see the new season on your local PBS channel. The first season (you should start there) can be viewed on Netflix, Hulu Plus, and On Demand. The first two seasons can be purchased in DVD pack at your local video outlet. The dress, transportation, social machinations, machinery, and the treatment of women are framed from 1946-1954.
4. Creative Writing/Poetry…Judy Viorst…Lessons In Laughter!
Author Judy Viorst has been featured a number of times on this column. Her story and poetry books are a classroom and home best bet for all ages. Only Shel Silverstein’s A Light In The Attic will bring more laughs and create more short-term projects than Viorst’s poetry book If I Were In Charge Of The World and Other Worries.
Her best selling book, Alexander and The Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, is now a movie starring Steve Carell, Jennifer Garner, and Ed Oxenbould as Alexander. Ten-year-old Alexander is the poster child for “if bad can happen, it will happen to Alexander”. No one in the family understands his mishaps. One night at twelve, over a wishing candle, Alexander mistakenly wishes that others in his family should have a bad day, too.
He thinks family members will, then, understand his problems if the same fate is meet by each family member. His mother, father, older brother, older sister, and baby brother are now cursed. The curse, immediately enacted on the next day, coincides with an extremely important day in all family member’s lives. Laughter and chaos follow as their family overcomes problems and tries to come together!
Alexander and The Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (1990) is also creatively retold in an earlier DVD format. The DVD was first produced in 1990. The DVD brings the book to life in animated people, cartoon form. Much of the story is supported by Carly Simon’s singing…while being narrated by a number of actors. It can easily be purchased on Amazon.com and is a nice follow-up to the movie. The DVD will give you ideas for a family YouTube submission that might go viral!
Judy Viorst’s book on turning seventy is a quick but fascinating read for an older audience. Alexander has some great points for this older audience, too.
Steve and his wife Nancy were featured this Sunday on 60 Minutes. Like Steve, she is an actor. Their take on their work, two children, and their life goals presented interesting spin-offs to their past and future leanings. You can catch it on 60 minutes re-watch.
5. Poetry…If I Were In Charge Of The World!
Judy Viorst’s Comical Dynamite For The Mind!
Ten different writing projects can be generated from the creative content in Judy Viorst’s poem If I Were In Charge Of The World. See what your family members or classroom would do if they were in charge of the world. Poem Hunters (http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/if-i-were-in-charge-of-the-world) is a great Internet site to find that poem you couldn’t place tht was sticking the far reaches of your mind. The site has the great feature that every poem (5,000 and counting) in their collection is spoken to you when that particular poem is highlighted.
If I Were In Charge Of The World By Judy Viorst
If I were in charge of the world
I’d cancel oatmeal,
Allergy shots, and also Sara Steinberg.
If I were in charge of the world
There would be brighter nights lights,
Healthier hamsters, and
Basketball baskets forty eight inches lower.
If I were in charge of the world
You wouldn’t have lonely.
You wouldn’t have clean.
You wouldn’t have bedtimes.
Or “Don’t punch your sister.”
You wouldn’t even have sisters.
If I were in charge of the world
A chocolate sundae with whipped cream and nuts would be a vegetable
All 007 movies would be G,
And a person who sometimes forgot to brush,
And sometimes forgot to flush,
Would still be allowed to be
In charge of the world.
6. Health…Death By Heart Disease Wins Again!
The Shocking And Mind Numbing Statistics!
The Cell Phone Application That Tracks Your Health!
Move And It Will Tell You How Far You Have Traveled!
The National Institute Of Health (NIH) in Atlanta just released mind-boggling information on heart disease. Heart disease continues to be the number one killer of Americans. 600,000 people die from this disease each year. That translates to 2,000 people a month and 100,000 more people then those that die from cancer. New everyday strategies for everyday people are needed. Your cellphone may be the easiest way to start a change in your life.
Every cellphone has an application (free or pay-to-use) that will track your
daily movement. The pay trackers will even give you a graph for your movement on each day of the week. You, then, can build strategies that will add more movement to each day whether you are a walker, runner, office desk sitter, or couch yam.
Go to the application’s section of your phone and type in health tracker. Three free versions and three pay versions will show up depending on the phone you use. Start with the free versions and see if you need the extra information that a pay application will provide. The most expensive pay application on our phones was $2.99. You may not need that much of an expense in your ‘better health’ quest. Walk On Johnny Cash!
7. Inspiration…Invictus And The Captain Of Your Fate!
Looking For An Armed Forces Salute!
If you are a reality television watcher or in any type of step program or change your life in some way program, you have heard of the phrase “master of your own fate”. The phrase seemed to originate from an 1875 poem by William Ernest Henley. This poem is a great post for anyone’s refrigerator.
The poem, though written in 1875, was not published until 1888. It first appeared in a book of Henley’s verses. When the poem was published, it did not have any title. Invictus means “unconquered”. The last two lines are quoted again and again on television and in print. Even the children’s movie Alexander’s Bad Day used this reference.
Invictus By William Ernest Henley (1849-1904)
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate,
I am the captain of my soul.
When you do your own research, you will, also, come upon Invictus as a Matt Damon movie that was made in 2009. The movie tells the Nelson Mandela story and his use of soccer to attack apartheid. Researching Mandela’s quotes about life, prison, and apartheid is a great short and long term project for any individual or classroom.
8. Teaching…Creative Staff Development In Art Form!
The Deborah Smiley-Sanders Project!
Embrace The Creative Dialogue!
Deborah Smiley-Sanders shared this/her new approach for parents, teachers, and students. The approach uses creative conversation and art across the educational community and school curriculum to forge present day schools and the school of the future.
Research by Zach Kelehear drives many of Ms. Sander’s ideas. Kelehear has a number of interesting books and papers published on educational leadership. “Instructional leadership, connoisseurship and critique: using an arts-based approach to extend conversations about teaching” (2008) is an informative read. Deborah and Zach stress that there are not enough informed teaching and learning conversations on any level. Time constraints are always used as an excuse for avoiding productive conversation.
The difference making conversations Deborah proposes, and will lead, include teaching strategies, methodology, instructional planning, and instructional delivery. Teachers, parents, and students have to regularly take part in this greatly needed conversation and planning. She will guide these groups to make this happen.
Deborah has an all-encompassing staff development program uniquely constructed to create teacher conversation and prepare administrators, parents, teachers, and students for education now and in the future.
Deborah is excited about sharing this new and different approach, as well as, her innovative teaching messages! You can reach Deborah at firstname.lastname@example.org. Deborah is a great advocate on Striving for Better Learning! She would make a great addition to any faculty meeting, district-wide staff development, or parent meeting.
9. This Week’s Suggested Themes That Did Not Make The Cut!
Topics that weren’t developed this week are, often, just as interesting as the topics that were covered. In many cases, we just didn’t have all the information or our research results were spotty. Case in point is the predictions of the worst winter in history with an amazing, unrivaled, early year storm and cold sweeping America this week.
We list these “not covered” topics each week to encourage readers to do their own research and get back to us with their points of view or with the creative “I know this” they, now, can contribute for this column.
1. Polar Vortex Starts Early…Monster Storm Crosses The Americas!
2. Veteran’s Day History!
3. The Return Of Downton Abbey!
4. Space Travel Vehicle Blows Up…Kills Two!
5. Television…The One Hundred
7. Big Hero Six…This Kid’s Movie Adds To Disney’s Money Chest!
10. Your Creative Ideas Will Certainly Enhance This Column!
Do you have a topic that can be featured on this column or can you contribute two creative paragraphs on your favorite movies, books, comics, art, music, gaming, education, travel, or more for our column? Don’t be afraid to let your creative self fly into any area except politics and religion.
Our reading audience is insatiable for any new idea…even yours!
Your ideas, creative column contributions, and future column suggestions should be sent to Tom Palumbo at email@example.com. Please send a photo or two with your two-paragraph contribution. We’d love to display your art and photography in a personal section, as well as, throughout the Let’s Talk’s discussions, too. Thank you for adding your work and expertise to this column! Your varied ideas, experiences, products, and insights…like Deborah Smiley Sanders’ ideas above… will surely bring a larger audience to the column and make the column’s content more interesting and far reaching. We hope you like the contributions of dozens of readers from throughout five continents.