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Sometimes You Get Into A Taxi And Win A Vacation

cubancab

No, I’m not talking about the Cash Cab – this campaign from Air Transat was even better.

A few weeks back, you may have noticed a baby blue 50’s Cuban style taxi roaming the streets of Toronto.

Those who were brave enough to flag it and go for a ride were rewarded with something I am currently dreaming of – an all inclusive Cuban vacation.

Torontonians aren’t known for trying something if it looks out of place, so kudos to those who were brave enough (or in enough of a rush) to go for it. We are all collectively jealous of you and your trip to warmer weather.

As important as travel is to me, I have not yet been to Cuba. It is definitely on my bucket list – and considering how inexpensive it is to go there for an all inclusive week – I am hoping to make that dream come true before winter is over. There is nothing I’m wishing for more as I look outside at the snow falling than a warm beach. I’ve cooped myself up in my house for a couple days now, and am terrified of stepping outside into this minus 3 weather we’re already having. Winter and I have never been friends, and it looks like this is gonna be another long, frozen winter.

Book your Cuba vacation with Air Transat today and then rub it in everyone’s face with a bunch of selfies on the beach. If I can save up some pennies over the holidays, I’m definitely escaping to Cuba at some point this winter.

The best part of this whole campaign is that they filmed it and made this hilarious video of the surprised patrons. Here’s hoping @AirTransat brings more of these fun, interactive campaigns to Toronto!


#cubantaxi #experiencetransat

 Lisa

The Necessary Tools of Freelance Life

freelance life

The freelance life is one that seems envious.

In fact, I envied it so much during times I was working fulltime in an office, that I made it my mission to one day be able to do it fulltime. Now that I have reached that point, I can tell you it comes with many downfalls (lack of benefits, lack of reliable income, trying to get paid on time, saving for tax time, needing finance and business skills you never learned at your Arts College), but it also comes with many perks.

Being able to work wherever you want – whenever you want – is the part that immediately appealed to me most. Being chained to a desk or an office for 8+ hours a day is not, and has never been, an enjoyable concept to me. No matter how many times I’ve tried to do it.

I like being able to wake up at 11am, stay pantsless til 2pm, grab a coffee and lunch by 2:30, and stay up til 3 or 4am on a weeknight. I like not having to worry about having an office wardrobe.

In the words of Bukowski:

How in the hell could a man enjoy being awakened at 8:30 a.m. by an alarm clock, leap out of bed, dress, force-feed, shit, piss, brush teeth and hair, and fight traffic to get to a place where essentially you made lots of money for somebody else and were asked to be grateful for the opportunity to do so? 

That perfectly summarizes my feelings on that whole archaic idea of what work should look like.

If you are similarly inclined to have control over your day, keep your own schedule, and answer only to yourself, you might be the kind of person who prefers freelancing to a regular job.

Being a night owl and an introvert, it definitely suits my natural habits much more than the forced fake smiles and douchey coworkers you sometimes have to deal with in the confines of working for someone else.

In order to freelance successfully, you do need a few tools.

I am nothing without my Samsung Galaxy S5. I have an external battery case for it so it never dies. I am perpetually checking email and tweeting no matter where I am or what time of day it is.

A fast, reliable internet connection. Unless you want to only work at cafe’s and libraries, you’ll want a good strong internet connection at home because most freelance jobs require a ton of online time.

A comfortable workspace. That might be Starbucks or the library, but I generally prefer the comfort of my bed, my couch, or my little office area in my room. Surround this space with things that inspire you to work. I have a poster from Copyblogger about writing all day every day printed out above m desk, as well as a Tim Gunn talking bobble head that spits out his best motivating quotes with the push of a button. It’s sometimes all I need to get writing.

Coffee. Or caffeine in some form you enjoy it. Green tea. Chocolate. Coke. Green juice if you’re a health nut. Whatever works for you to keep you alert and get your day going.

Most importantly though, is a computer. Many are MAC loyal but for freelance writers, paying that much is outrageous. Unless you’re willing to live with your parents all through your 20s – it’s not happening. And that’s okay because a writer won’t be editing videos or doing anything a MAC is famous for.

My 17″ Samsung laptop is my main writing and working tool when at home, but when I am out and about – back home, at my boyfriends house, at a client’s office, at Starbucks – I am always with my ASUS Transformer tablet.

As I’ve mentioned before, it has become my right hand when I’m not home, and I am infinitely more productive (and less cranky, because it’s not heavy) with it in my life. A tablet you can type comfortably on is one of the most helpful tools of freelance life, if you ask me (she says as she writes this post on her ASUS at a Starbucks).

I’m required to disclose the relationship between my site and Intel Canada, but all opinions stated above are my own!


 Lisa

TGIF – Jian, Tory and Harper

Violence against women Prevelance

Whoooa Toronto.

What a week. Seriously. There’s a whole lot to talk about this Halloween.

We have a new mayor, and while I’m happy it’s no longer a Ford brother, I firmly believe Tory is a wolf in sheep’s clothing and his policies will be no different than those that Ford loved. He was the CEO of ROGERS for god’s sake.

I am still shocked that the city somehow thinks another conservative mayor is what we need after 4 years of an awful conservative mayor. “At least he’s not Ford!” is what I heard from people I ususally respect – but if all you care about is the city not being on Jimmy Kimmel – then I guess you got what you wanted. This is a rich white man in office to support the rich white men – make no mistake on that one.

His very PR savvy act of asking Olivia and David to join his team was smart, but until he starts undoing the damage Ford did, I don’t believe in him as my mayor any more than I did Ford. Politically they are as similar as it gets.

We also had a “terrorism” scare last week that was actually someone with serious mental illness. How Harper found it appropriate to use it as an excuse to make us all George W. Bush America FUK YEAH I will never understand. The focus here needs to be on taking care of Canadians with mental illness – something Harper has zero interest in. His terrorist rhetoric on the other hand is much better for his “lets make us more American” agenda.

AND THEN – the ball dropped on Jian Ghomeshi. I’ve been silent about this on the blog after being told to ‘wait for the evidence’ but I too, like everyone in the Canadian music/media industry knew about Jian. I mean, I had no idea he was actually this sick – but I heard the warnings/whispers that he’s a real creep with girls and got that icky feeling of a snake crawling around when seeing him interact with young women at events.

A lot of men like to question that article I just linked to – wondering why, if so many in the industry knew about him – no one said anything. The whispers were generally spread among women, to protect women – or from men who knew, to protect women. No doubt there was a collective sigh within the industry when it all went public.

Finally, we don’t have to pretend like we’re not grossed out by him at Polaris Galas and Lena Dunham interviews. We don’t have to whisper to our eager interns at a music party to avoid him at all costs.

Lisa

Giveaway – Birdman Movie Prize Pack

birdman giveaway

Hey guys. Time for another brilliant giveaway! This time for a film I think is truly wonderful.

I had the chance to attend the press screening and I can say without a doubt that Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) is one of the best films I’ve seen in 2014. Which didn’t totally surprise me, as it comes from the brilliant mind of Alejandro Gonzàlez Iñàrritu, who also made Babel, 21 Grams and Amores Perros.

Thanks to their team, I have 5 prize packs to give to you guys, featuring ROE tickets, a copy of the soundtrack, and a tee featuring the Toronto version of the poster, as seen above. How cool is it that each major city got their own poster featuring Birdman on a city landmark? Fantastic marketing strategy.

The soundtrack is particularly special because it moves the action in the film. It almost seems to direct the characters and creates the feeling of chaos going on in the story. Just listen to this sample of the fantastic jazz drumming from Antonio Sanchez:

To win, just email me at lisa@turntherecordover.com with the subject line “Birdman Contest.”

Extra entries are available via liking TTRO on Facebook and sharing the post about this giveaway, following me on Twitter and tweeting about this giveaway, and following me on Instagram and hearting the photo pertaining to this giveaway once I post it.

You can also subscribe to the upcoming TTRO weekly roundup newsletter via entering your email address in that little box up there near the top of the left sidebar. Subscribers automatically get 3x as many entries because they’re the best, so make sure to mention if you are subscribed when you email me.

Winners will be contacted on November 2nd via email.

Lisa

Today’s Quote – The Best Part of Gone Girl

GoneGirl

Men always say that as the defining compliment, don’t they? She’s a cool girl. Being the Cool Girl means I am a hot, brilliant, funny woman who adores football, poker, dirty jokes, and burping, who plays video games, drinks cheap beer, loves threesomes and anal sex, and jams hot dogs and hamburgers into her mouth like she’s hosting the world’s biggest culinary gang bang while somehow maintaining a size 2, because Cool Girls are above all hot. Hot and understanding. Cool Girls never get angry; they only smile in a chagrined, loving manner and let their men do whatever they want. Go ahead, shit on me, I don’t mind, I’m the Cool Girl.

Men actually think this girl exists. Maybe they’re fooled because so many women are willing to pretend to be this girl. For a long time Cool Girl offended me. I used to see men – friends, coworkers, strangers – giddy over these awful pretender women, and I’d want to sit these men down and calmly say: You are not dating a woman, you are dating a woman who has watched too many movies written by socially awkward men who’d like to believe that this kind of woman exists and might kiss them. I’d want to grab the poor guy by his lapels or messenger bag and say: The bitch doesn’t really love chili dogs that much – no one loves chili dogs that much! And the Cool Girls are even more pathetic: They’re not even pretending to be the woman they want to be, they’re pretending to be the woman a man wants them to be. Oh, and if you’re not a Cool Girl, I beg you not to believe that your man doesn’t want the Cool Girl. It may be a slightly different version – maybe he’s a vegetarian, so Cool Girl loves seitan and is great with dogs; or maybe he’s a hipster artist, so Cool Girl is a tattooed, bespectacled nerd who loves comics. There are variations to the window dressing, but believe me, he wants Cool Girl, who is basically the girl who likes every fucking thing he likes and doesn’t ever complain. (How do you know you’re not Cool Girl? Because he says things like: “I like strong women.” If he says that to you, he will at some point fuck someone else. Because “I like strong women” is code for “I hate strong women.”)

I waited patiently – years – for the pendulum to swing the other way, for men to start reading Jane Austen, learn how to knit, pretend to love cosmos, organize scrapbook parties, and make out with each other while we leer. And then we’d say, Yeah, he’s a Cool Guy.

Lisa