A Journalist inside of the blogging world

BloggingAfter spending about twenty minutes wracking my mind on what to blog about I have come to a few slightly worrying conclusions. First of all, I have realised that when I need my brain to think, it refuses to do so. Second of all, I have been trawling along this site trying to find the ‘write a blog’ button for far longer than any sane minded person would. I guess it’s not all that easy in the blogging world eh? This all takes thought and preparation , two key traits I have not been gifted with. Anyway, after all my thought and preparation (which is none) I have decided right now, at 10.45 pm on a college night to blog about blogging. Sound your trumpets, blow your whistles, raise your flags and clap your hands… I know, I am a genius !

I am not very use to blogging as you can all see, apart from my late nights sitting at a computer screen sharing and re blogging cool pictures I have found on Tumblr that’s about as close as I have gotten to the ‘Blogging World of Blogs and Typing’. And nights writing up articles for college assignments. What is going through my head is what ever happened to good old pen and paper eh? Gone are the days where we would be informed or write about things that were not on the internet. I guess what I’m trying to say here is that at 19 , I’m still baffled by technology and the internet and this whole community we have going on. Granted I am on Facebook, and Twitter basically all day everyday , I still cannot grasp the fact that this is it . We no longer need to write letters to communicate, we just send a quick mail through Facebook, we are no longer informed of key events or momentous occasions in the world through newspapers and word of mouth, we just log on and it is all over the ‘Twittesphere” . And now here I am writing a blog. An online blog. I have just joined a community of people who share their thoughts, wisdom and news from their laptops, computers, Ipads etc day in and day out . And it’s kind of scary, exciting and strange because God knows where this could lead. And of course pursuing a hopeful career as a print journalist I cannot help but feel as if I am helping destruct the print business by working online.  I have been told that blogging is the way forward and I’m looking forward to starting my blogging rampage. I just need to think of something to write about…something interesting, something worth reading .. hmm, who likes spoons? Spoon blogs. Learn about the world of spoons. No? Okay back to the drawing board.

Till next time,  crazy scary new blogging world I have entered.

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5 Gift Ideas for This Coming Mothers Day.

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It’s nearly that time of the year again, that day where your mother holds up a surrender flag and enjoys a day purely dedicated to her. That’s right, it’s Mother’s Day. Now I don’t know how good most of you guys are at giving gifts, but I for one am probably one of the worst at it. Over the years my mother has been victim to many “Oh you shouldn’t have…no seriously you really shouldn’t have” gifts. Such as, luminous orange sandals, dead flowers picked from our neighbours garden, a card saying ‘I.O.U’, and a toothbrush. Yes, over the years my mother has not only had to put up with some terrible gifts, she has also had to put up with me. However, practice makes perfect and I have started to brush up on my gift-giving techniques. So if you are on the same boat as I am and still haven’t gotten your mother a gift for this coming Mothers Day here are some maybe useful or useless gift ideas that won’t break the bank.

  1. A CD containing some of her favourite songs: It was the night before Mothers Day when all through the house, I hadn’t a clue what to get for my mum so I clicked on the mouse… and downloaded some of her favourite songs. It was quick, it was easy and it was cheap. I made a mixed CD containing some Michael Jackson, some Justin Timberlake, and a bit of Chicago. She still to this day blares the CD and dances around the kitchen while making dinner. Mothers Day-0 Me-1
  2. A necklace with the word ‘Mum’ on it: Mothers Day 2009 hit me like a ton of bricks, I know that jewelry can be slightly pricey but this year I had only 12 euro and I managed to get my mum this ‘gold’ necklace in Argos for just that. I know cheap jewelery is a bit of a no-go but if you are stuck and if it’s there I’d say go for it. My mother loved it, I think it was the fact that she could ‘represent’ her mother title with pride around her neck. Granted over time the chain did go from being gold being silver, she still wears it everyday. Mothers Day-0 Me-2
  3. Write a Poem: As you can see the next Mothers Day again was a failure on the financial side of things, so I decided to write my mother a poem. It contained some of the things I loved most about her. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to resemble a poem from W.B Yeats, it can be as sappy or as funny as you like. Once you put a bit of thought into it that is all that matters and I’m sure just like my mother yours will love it! Mothers Day-0 Me-3
  4. A Voucher Book: There is nothing my mother loves more than free child labour in our home. Whether its washing the dishes for her, or making her endless cups of tea. So I decided to make her a quick drafted Voucher book giving her the power to make me do little chores around the house that I so gladly did (while cursing myself for making the voucher book in the first place). But mothers do a lot, and its nice to give back. I think that every mother would like to be able to put her feet up and use her vouchers one by one, while you put a smile on your face and wonder if these little jobs are earning you the all important ‘Brownie Points’.
    Mothers Day-0 Me-4
  5. Make a Scrap Book: This is the winner, I gave this to my mother last year and she cried. No not bad tears, tears of joy… I hope. I collected pictures that were scattered around the house and put them all into one big book. I printed out pictures of some of her favourite things and stuck them in too. I also searched for old tickets from events we went to, and things that provided good memories. Sprinkled a little glitter to glam it up and there we had it, a book of memories for my mother. She said it was the best thing she had ever received, being a sentimental lady. Which not only gave me brownie points and one up on Mothers Day, I also got to relish in the fact that I am probably now the favourite child. Mothers Day-0, Siblings-0, Me-5.

Google Glasses? Yes please!

I just watched an advertisement for Google Glasses and I’d just like to run through what went through my mind while watching it; I really want to go skydiving, ice sculptures are cool, that song playing in the background is good, roller coasters are scary and Google Glasses are amazing! Okay so in case any of you have been living under a rock for the last week or two and do not know what I am talking about, I am talking about a new media product Google has been working on since last April that could be released soon. It is the ‘Google Glass’, basically it is a nifty pair of glasses that holds all kind of high-tech super amazing gadgets, in Layman terms. It is a new device that will allow us to take photos, video record, stream, show reminders and connect us to other people. I know you’re probably thinking “My phone does that”, but its basically like having a computer on your face, that you can talk to! Who needs friends anymore? Anyway, after watching the advertisement video for it I have begun to take any spare change I have and put it all in my newly made ‘Google Glass Saving Glass’. Why would I have to save for a pair of glasses you ask? Well because apparently these bad boys are not going to be selling at the same prices you would find in Specsavers as they have been marketed at 1,500 dollars each. Yes, the world is a cruel place.

What I like about the thought of someday owning my own set of Google Glasses (if I win the lotto), is how great it would be to just record the world around me as it is perceived from my own eyes. I just have these visions of me having a ‘Best Bits’ video montage of my life every few months. Although I could be at a health risk with using the glasses so often as it has been studied by Eye Specialists who wrote a list of concerns they had about the Google Glass device saying it would cause neck strains, migraines, and may impair peoples vision etc. Another thing i’d be worried about is that the Google Glass has an automatic picture function which means it will take random pictures of the world your in at random parts of the day. Why would I be worried about that? I have two reasons, Twitter will be filled with even more boring Instagramme-like ‘I woke up today’ picture nonsense. Secondly it will make me realize that my life is even more boring than I think, showing me images of food, couch, and bed. So I really don’t think i’d be wearing my Google Glasses on a day to day basis, I think I could just put them on anytime I am going somewhere interesting, or doing something interesting (which will not be often).

So to conclude my crazy unorganized rant about Google Glasses, I think they are a great idea. I am really interested to find out how they could change the world we see around us and capture the things we see. However, would I be willing to fork out all that money? I don’t think so. Google Glasses may change the world, but I am still waiting on a robot to clean my bedroom and do my college work, so until then technology you have not yet blown my mind.

If you want to get really emotional and nostalgic about life and see how cool these glasses are watch the video I posted along with this blog 🙂

And if you are wondering what the song is in the background I have just discovered it is The Kissaway Trail-New Lipstick.

Kate Middleton Shopping VS Five People Killed in Bomb Attacks, Which Would You Consider News?

On pondering the internet I stumbled across a ground-breaking article that will probably be the main news story soon enough. The article was about Kate Middleton shopping for maternity clothes. Wait, it gets better… She was shopping in Topshop. Can we all just stop our lives for just two minutes to gather ourselves and realize how serious this is? 

Okay enough of the sarcasm, but seriously am I the only one that genuinely does not care about whether or not the Duchess of Cambridge found a good deal on some over-sized pants? I know being a journalism student means I shouldn’t really give out too much about the news, but considering this article was headlined ‘OMG! Katie Middleton spotted shopping for maternity clothes in Topshop’, I feel like its okay to put aside my commitment to the media for a second and sigh for humanity.

While it is all well and good that possibly one of the richest families in the world are trying to be ‘one of the people’ by rummaging through bargain bins in their local shop I feel like its not really that news worthy. In fact it kind of annoys me that Kate Middleton shopping in Topshop is probably going to get more recognition than five people being killed in bomb attacks in Southern Iraq. But I guess that brings the whole “Dog bites man isn’t news, man bites dog is” saying to life. Unfortunately the public hear about war and mass amounts of people dying so much that it stops being news and begins to be considered normal. Which is the sad truth about the world today. I am not saying that people will find Kate Middleton shopping more important than large numbers of people dying, I’m just saying that its probably going to get a lot more attention. Congratulations on finding yourself a cheap pair of jeggings, Kate.

 

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Lesson of the day: Rich people get value for money in Topshop. 

 

Great Voice,Great Lyrics, Great song.

Passenger-Little-lights-PAK-e1329863203934Great Voice,Great Lyrics, Great song.

The following statement could offend or annoy people: I only discovered Passenger last week. I know, I know, I am a failure in the eyes of music lovers. However, after listening to the song, ‘Let Her Go’ I am now, cue terrible joke/pun… A passenger on the fan train. From what I have read this guy Mike Rosenberg the singer has been around since 2003, which means that I have 10 years of great music to catch up on.

‘Let Her Go’ was written and produced by Rosenberg (with the help of  Chris Vallejo), and has become and international hit. It has hit number 1 this week in the Irish Singles Chart which I am pretty happy about! Not only is this song easy on the ears in terms of music and Rosenbergs unbelievable voice, it also contains some great lyrics.

This song is definitely one for the heartbroken girl that recently went through a break up and needs a soundtrack for it. And for the guy’s if you have broken up with a girl and regret it, this song will hit the spot for you, no doubt. But the lyrics have such a nostalgic feel to them that can relate to anyone really, not just heart-broken guys and girls. And of course, we don’t all have to love a song just for its lyrics, the song itself just runs together so well.

I always say if you hear a song for the first time and automatically love it, its a good one. There is none of this “When you listen to it a few times you will like it, I swear” nonsense going on, it is just great plain and simple. Mike Rosenbergs voice is like nothing I have ever heard before its kind of like Ragnar ( male singer from Of Monsers and Men) and Marcus Mumford (Mumford and Sons) came together and made a love child, which is in fact Rosenbergs voice.

To conclude this Fan girl piece, I would strongly recommend listening to this song and other tracks like ‘The Wrong Direction’ & ‘A Thousand Matches’ from Passenger. His music is pretty folk-like but I do believe that anyone at all could find at least one song from him that they will instantly fall in love with.

Case Study-Keith Barry’s Visit to Cavan

For anyone that is unaware of who Keith Barry is, he is a well known Irish Mentalist,Hypnotist, and Magician. He started off his TV career with a series called ‘Close Encounters With Keith Barry’ that has been aired in 28 different countries around the world. He now makes a living going on tour and doing live performances around the world, dabbling in the supernatural world and causing people to sit at the edge of their seats, with fear and curiosity. I spoke to Orla Murphy who attended one of his shows that was held in the Slieve Russell hotel in Ballyconnell, Cavan at the start of February:

What Did your night at Keith Barry involve?
The night was based around entering “the other side”. He used the audience in basically every segment of the show. Getting them involved in different things that could get them in contact with ‘The Other Side’.
Did he make u question your beliefs with the super natural world?
I don’t know about questioning my beliefs but it opened my mind to how easily the human mind can be manipulated, in a few parts of the show, he showed how he basically got people to give him the answers that he wanted by subtly hinting different numbers and bands, etc throughout the performance. 

What was the atmosphere like around you?
The atmosphere was really good, at the start you could tell people were skeptical and after a while you could just see the disbelief and sometimes confusion on peoples faces, it was pretty funny to watch. 

Is there any part of the night that really stood out for you?
The final part of the show stands out for me the most. He brought two girls up on stage and used a Oiji board to contact their relatives that had passed away, and one of the girls seemed to be more open minded by the whole process and got very emotional and the whole hall was silent. It was just a very eerie experience. It was very well done.

Would you recommend his show to other people?
I would recommend him to other people, not only was it interesting it was also very entertaining. I would definitely go to see him again.

After Orla watched a four hour performance with Keith Barry he views on the supernatural world were not changed but the successful Mentalist did have her and her friends and most of the audience questioning themselves and wanting to learn more. The fact that he involved the audience in everything really gave people value for the money in a way that everyone was getting a chance to be a part of the show. Orla Murphy was really happy with the night and wants to see him again very soon. Whether she was brainwashed into thinking that , who knows, but all in all it seems like the show was a definite success. 

Can We Please Talk About The Best Cover I Have Ever Heard?

Can We Please Talk About The Best Cover I Have Ever Heard?

Recently I was on work experience in a popular radio station in Dublin, and on my second day in there I was told Gabrielle Aplin was coming in for an interview. I’m not going to lie, her name did not ring a bell at all. So I did what anyone would do, I cyber stalked. I then came to the realization that she was a very popular British singer/songwriter who made the big time when she was asked to cover  Frankie Goes to Hollywood’s hit song, The Power of Love for a Christmas television advert. This got her a lot of attention and she basically became an over night sensation. In just a couple of months she went from covering songs and posting them on Youtube to releasing her own album and touring the world, at just 20 years of age.

Anyway, she came in to the studios for her interview and I got to sit in the studio to watch, listen, and fall in love with her voice. She sang her latest single ‘Please Don’t Say You Love Me’ live and everyone in the studio could not take their eyes off her. Her voice is by far one of the most pure and naturally amazing singing voices I have ever heard. As soon as I got home that day I went on yet another cyber prowl to hear the song again, on doing this I stumbled across a collaboration cover she performed with well known artist Bastille of Fleetwood Macs hit song ‘Dreams’ and since hearing it for the first time I have played it an estimated 300’000 times again and again.

It is by far the best cover I have heard in a long time, and I love how Gabrielle and Bastille made it their own by note directly singing it exactly the same way as previous artists before. They put their own mark on it, and certainly gives Fleetwood Mac a run for their money.

Check it out guys, you will not regret it. 🙂

The George Bar Is The Place To Be

 

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Last night a couple of my friends and I decided to go to the George for a night out. For anyone who is not familiar with this place it is a well-known Gay bar in Dublin which has been around for years. Personally I have never gone out in a gay bar before and to tell the truth I have been missing out big time. The place is brilliant; it ticked all of the boxes for me in terms of entertainment, music and people.

When we arrived we paid our admission which was only four euro each. Normally places charge anything from six to 10 euro for admission so already we were on a good start. We walked up the stairs to be immediately met by a photo booth, which later on printed out some rather dodgy pictures of us in our highest state of inebriation. When you are upstairs you have a bar and a balcony that looks down on the stage where some of the most glorious drag queens I have ever seen in my life are staged, providing the entertainment for the night and giving out prizes. I didn’t see much of the show last night but I do recall seeing to guys eating burgers as fast as they could to win themselves two hundred euro which is not too shabby at all.

I also saw one drag queen bust out unbelievable dance moves which kind of made me wish I could dance that way too. Instead of my usual ‘Water Sprinkler’ and ‘Robot’ dance that I usually take on shamefully. When the show is over the music starts and it can be anything from old school Britney Spears tracks to songs that are on the charts right now. The stage is a free for all and if you want to get up and dance you are more than welcome to. My friends and I did happen to be the first ones up to dance, which most likely scared other people away. By the end of the night the dance floor was crowded, people were mixing together laughing and joking and everyone was on such a good buzz.

The bathrooms are not filled with moaning girls giving out about their boyfriends making eye contact with another girl, or packing together to fix their makeup. Instead you are greeted with unblocked toilets that flush and women that don’t stab you in the toes with their heels.

The smoking area is for once not the most social part of the club which I found strange, instead conversation is brought up at the bars or on the couches surrounding the bar.

To sum it all up, whether you are gay, straight or bisexual The George is guaranteed to give you a good night. The music is great, the people are lovely, and the drinks are cheap. I think I will definitely go back again soon.

Just Give Me A Reason

P!nk is one of the very few artists in the industry who has continued to stay true to herself no matter what rubbish was being thrown around the charts. Thankfully she has come away without redone or David Guetta on any of her tracks, that aside when she does collaborate on a song she always owns it.

Her latest collaboration with Fun’s Nate Reuss shows that she is not afraid to blend with pop’s current flavour even though it is Fun.

In the first verse she sings the line”I let you see the parts of me/ That weren’t all that pretty/ And with every touch you fixed them,” just before she bursts into a heart-warbling chorus. The final result echos fun’s own anthemic hits.

This song has P!nk written all over it but the harmonies that Nate and P!nk do are lyrically beautiful, I never thought that their voices would blend so well together.

From the reasons above i award this song 4.5* out of 5.

Watch the music video for Pink and Nate Ruess’s ‘Just Give Me A Reason’ below