Last weekend I watched, and loved, The Big Short, a film based on the book of the same name by Michael Lewis, which describes a group of disparate outsiders who each spotted the colossal financial malfeasance which gave rise to the banking and housing crisis of 2008. The writer-director Adam McKay manages to create a hilarious, sharp, clear and compelling movie, all the more impressive given that the subject matter is, frankly, pretty dry and horrendously complex - riddled with acronyms and nuanced money manipulations in identikit boardrooms.
What is of most interest to someone like me, who found the image of being an Numan fan so helpful as I learned to love being disabled, is that it charts Gary's diagnosis of Aspergers Syndrome, which obviously influenced his image and attitude through out his career, and his battles with depression and anxiety as he struggled to rebuild his career.
A wheelchair, a lack of symmetry, a few lumps and bumps, freckles, dark skin, short legs, full arms and frizzy hair, are not bad things. They are part of human beings. They belong to real lives that are being lived everyday, who are being subliminally rejected every single day. It begins with the designers. You have a job to do. You have a platform and a responsibility. You have a power to make anyone in the world feel beautiful at your fingertips, which is one of the greatest gifts you can give to a person. Prove that you have the imagination, will, and basic talent to be able to make something that isn't solely a walking rail, look spectacular.
Alan Rickman died two weeks ago and I am broken, as is everyone else who knew him. I just wanted to share a few more words about him.
The recent beaching of sperm whales on our east coast, and simultaneously in Europe, has once again called attention to undersea soundscapes. Sperm whales are very special creatures, possibly more dependent on acoustics, and more sensitive to it than any other animal in the sea.
By now, you may have heard that Union J singer and 'I'm A Celebrity' star George Shelley has made the brave decision to open up about his sexuality, after he posted a candid video on YouTube explaining that he is attracted to men and women. And in a completely refreshing and honest admission, he said he is not sticking an "old-fashioned" label on his life choices. So why then, were most news outlets who reported the news quick to brand George "bisexual"?
Obviously the lion's share of my life has been dedicated to training, pushing my body to its physical limits and enduring all that comes with that lifestyle. Not only has this always helped me stay in shape, it has also helped me keep a clear head, to focus my mind when all around me may be chaotic. This, thankfully, has served me well in the last month.
It's time for another glimpse behind the scenes in a Celebrity's life in my Celebs at Home series. I've always been fascinated by Billy Idol, I love the fact that you never see him out of 'rebel character'.
A startling pattern I noticed was that the majority of critiques disseminating across the net were from those who were NOT Indian, yet who felt the need to speak on behalf of a culture which was not theirs.
I had the first walk-in session last week at the Arts Theatre and it was a hit - if a walk-in session can be a hit. People came in in all sizes; young, old, straight, gay, all nations represented. It's pretty clear everyone wants and needs to talk, just to feel heard and understood by compassionate people who feel the same.
If you are not familiar with the film, it stars David Bowie as Jareth, the Goblin King, who steals 15-year-old Sarah's baby brother away when she carelessly wishes for it to happen because he won't stop crying. Jareth says she can only have him back if she completes the Labyrinth. Apparently, Jareth does this because he is in love with Sarah, and wants to grant her wishes...
Over the past two years, no black actors or actresses have been nominated for Oscars. And over the past decade there has only been 18 black nominees, which amounts to just 9 percent of all acting nominees.
Sadly, I know from that personal experience that dementia is one of those illnesses that can be very scary for anybody, especially at the first stage of dementia when there's a state of confusion for everybody. So, I'm really glad the entertainment world is making such a fuss out of dementia because raising awareness is so important to people who have the condition, their carers and loved ones because there is still a stigma attached to it. Unfortunately, there doesn't appear to be a cure for dementia in sight so that means we've got to make sure that people living with dementia can live well in their communities.
It's a veritable melting pot of trends, music and culture. The area has produced a diverse array of talent who are widely celebrated today; from esteemed writer (Edgar Allen Poe), to top businessmen (Alan Sugar) and even man-of-the-moment Idris Elba. Local institutions like the 115 year old Hackney Empire has helped provide platforms for this multicultural talent over the years, and the Industrial and Jungle electronic music genres even originated from the area.
If you tipped your head in the right direction on Monday evening you probably heard a whoosh of applause coming all the way from the Eccles Theatre at this year's Sundance Festival, where the first of three standing ovations greeted the premiere screening of The Birth of a Nation.
Zayn is the first guy to come along in a long time, who actually seems as though he gets what it takes to be a properly decent, worldwide popstar. True, he isn't exactly a novice, having spent five years in one of the most famous pop groups in the world, but it does seem that now he's flying solo, Zayn will be able truly to thrive.