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Happy New Year!

Welcome to 2014!

As surreal as it is to write, it’s equally as unbelievable to comprehend that it is now the year 2014. Despite the fact that we are not driving flying cars or living like The Jetsons quite yet, there are many things to celebrate and look forward to in this brand new year. For instance, there will be plenty of personal resolutions that we will each be working hard at to achieve in the next 365 days. Some will be easy and some will be hard. It’s possible that there will even be a couple that will have staying power beyond January. For me, there are several in which I intend to use every single available day to make happen.

With so much joy and happiness spread around the world today, January 1, 2014, it’s important to remember what hard work and perseverance can bring. In certain circumstances, an entire year may be required to pull off an achievement or spectacle so grand that it goes down in history as the best ever.

In the case of the shining Middle Eastern metropolis known as Dubai, their hope and extraordinary effort just may be rewarded with the title of “greatest ever.” Last night, the city attempted to pull off the world’s largest fireworks display. NPR online had a good description of what was being attempted in the night sky of the United Arab Emirates.

Starting precisely 20 seconds before midnight local time, over 500,000 fireworks are set to be used during the display which is set to last around six minutes, with Guinness World Records adjudicators on hand to officiate the attempt.

Covering a distance of over 94km (61.6 miles) of the city’s seafront, the display will incorporate some of Dubai’s top landmarks, including Palm Jumeirah, World Islands, the Burj Khalifa and Burj Al Arab. 

Having been in Dubai for New Years several years ago, it’s an incredible sight to see the glistening city light up in all directions. To give you a taste of what it’s like to experience it first-hand, below are two videos showcasing last night’s fireworks display.

Enjoy!

Here’s to Our Own Record-Setting Year!

The One Night We Should All Raise a Glass

The final day of 2013 has arrived, which is when we collectively reflect on what this year has meant to us, as well as the people we care about. We will think about the good and the bad scratch that: only the good!

It’s New Year’s Eve: the special, global celebratory moment (depending on the time zone) when the lens through which we see the world shows us that anything is possible in the upcoming new year. The sky is the limit. And let’s be honest, there’s really only one thing you can and should be doing tonight.

And it goes a little something like this…

Happy New Year’s Eve!

The Infinite Possibilities of the Unknown

Two things:

First, Matthew McConaughey has officially transitioned from a charming romantic comedy staple to a character actor that explores deep, complex and sometimes morally conflicting terrain and alleyways. To clarify, his transition is not necessarily permanent and is somewhat representative of a Game Show portfolio. He can pick Door #1 (serious), Door #2 (comedy) or Door #3 (sports/drama).

It’s not a bad hallway to walk through each day as an actor. However, it’s not yet clear which door he’s built or walked into with his most recent adventure with a relatively unknown, independent British filmmaker…

Some of his roles recently (Mud, Dallas Buyer’s Club, The Wolf of Wall Street) surely have taken McConaughey into new levels of the unknown. The same likely goes for some of his longtime fans. Will these more serious character portrayals shine a new light on a before darkened corner in the actor’s study to reveal a gold envelope containing a decorated card stock with his name written on it?

Time will tell…

Speaking of time, the second note today involves the recent release of a trailer for director Christopher Nolan’s latest mind-bender: Interstellar. From Memento (psychological) to Inception (dreaming) to The Dark Knight trilogy (pain, fear, chaos, belief), Nolan and Co. (& Syncopy of course) has now entered the world of science fiction with Interstellar.

Here is the first glimpse:

The question isn’t whether or not Matthew McConaughey can successfully propel himself into a new horizon in the stars that leads him to an Oscar, but rather if Christopher Nolan will have a good reason to invite him on another crazy road trip in the future, as the director tends to do with a select group of actors and actresses.

The better question today is will you take the ultimate journey to explore the unknown with McConaughey one year from now?

A Resurgent Glow from a Golden Era

It is being widely reported today that, “Girl Meets World,” the spin-off series to the Millenial ’90s favorite, “Boy Meets World,” has officially been greenlit, according to Yahoo TV’s Kelly Woo’s article, “‘Girl Meets World’ Is Officially Happening! Disney Channel Orders Series.”

cory and topanga
Yahoo! TV/Eric McCandless/DISNEY CHANNEL – Ben Savage, Danielle Fishel, Rowan Blanchard, and Sabrina Carpenter in the series premiere of Disney Channel’s “Girl Meets World.”

The purpose of the post is first to celebrate this momentous occasion!

Second, take a close look at the picture above. The best friends hugging is nice, as is Cory’s/Mr. Matthew’s reflective contemplation of his daughter’s best friend dynamic (Cory and Shawn…Cory and Shawn…) from the eyes of a parent.

This show is going to be a fascinating journey (FYI – This is the point where each of us does, “The Fenny Call”)!

However, the best part of the screen shot is the look on Topanga’s/Mrs. Matthew’s face. Her heartfelt glare towards the love of her life (Monkey bars!) transcends whatever is happening in this scene and encapsulates the return of the cool-family friendly-TGIF show from the ’90s.

The return of wholesome, cleverly written and wonderfully acted television with pertinent subject matters and important life lessons will arrive soon enough. 2014 will see the return of Cory, Topanga and Mr. Feeny (at least in the pilot). Perhaps a cameo from Shawn? Plays with Squirrels…?

Even if it’s just one show, turning on any spotlight to shine greatness starts with a glow.

P.S. Girls of America: Turn off the “Real Housewives” of wherever and start doing your video research on the beautifully intelligent and independent (with a healthy side of weird) Topanga.