Enterprising Richard Rabkin knocks off The Onion with a decidedly Canadian twist. Well not really, as the lampooning targets much of the same international fodder. Called the Sweatshop Press, the mock news site hopes to capture the the same audience as the much beloved The Onion. Abrasion ranks it in as a moderately amusing weekly chuckle. However, given the recent announcement to shutdown the three remaining Canadian Levi Strauss manufacturing plants, we figure Canada can do with another sweatshop of our own.
Contributor and Battista fashionista Jesus Chihuahua writes: Who would have thought the insanity that was Lara Flynn Boyle's daft tutu outfit sported last January, 2003 to the Golden Globe Awards would become the latest in fashionable must have looks? Trendcentral reports" The trend for all things ballet-related only seems to be getting bigger. It’s no wonder given that ballet fashion is inexpensive and offers a retro ‘80s flashback that’s not the omnipresent new wave look. And for those of us who lack grace and skinny limbs, ballet fashion can be worn by anyone. Capezio stores are favored for their thin wrap sweaters and frilly skirts; we’ve seen some brave “soles” taking it to the streets in authentic ballet slippers. Stores are still stocking legwarmers for fall fashion. Purses are being traded for old school kiddie ballet bags in pink and purple. But the most innovative interpretation of the ballet trend we’ve seen yet is sneakers worn with extra long laces that tie up the leg like pointe shoes. Lest you think ballet is just about the look, true fitness trendsetters are throwing ballet classes into the mix with yoga and pilates; we’ve even heard of urban loft dwellers having barres installed so they can practice their plies and tondus at home. Hair in a tight bun not required." Lara Flynn Boyle, you crazy fashionista! You now rank with Bjork's egg-laying swan dress for delicious fashion moment.
"Misunderstood" Ontario Premier Ernie Eves declares "You shouldn't even be considered to be anywhere near wealthy, I would think, no matter where you live in this great province, unless you're making in the neighbourhood of $150,000 a year or more." Ernie use to be an investment banker with a seven figure paycheque. The average Canadian 2+ household earns $70K. How well we all relate.
Flare Magazine provides celeb oogle fest of Toronto Film Festival fashions. Anorexic is still the new anorexic.
Abrasion contributor and digitalista Crisis Girl reports: " The Walrus launched on Thursday at the Capital Theatre stuffed with mostly jacketted and pearl necklaced publishing world types but also hungry looking young artists in long sleeved T-shirts and the odd uncomfortable looking blue haired writer wondering why he has to come to these things and why they just can't exchange writing for money. A far cry from the Shift shindigs, there was open bar (tellingly, the only item that wasn't free was bottled water), cheeses and canapes and smoked salmon galore right till the end of the night, and - the most exciting - a prominent presence by the Oyster Boy! Two shuckers kept busy all night, with fresh grated horseradish and everything. PLUS smoking throughout INDOORS, and not just cigarettes. There was some live music and even short speeches but the sound system was so bad that you could barely make out the style of music and half the audience wouldn't shut up for the toasts. And the magazine! It's actually worth getting excited about. Lots of polysyllabic words with dense sentence structures covering everything from Paul Martin's super entrenched and uber scary conflicts of interest to reviews of books from the Middle East by Margaret Atwood. And comics! Lots of little neat drawings throughout, and not one but TWO crossword puzzles. Smells intellectual, looks good, and the writers and artists get paid a lot."
From Masthead: "Saturday Night contributor Jesse Brown has perpetrated a hoax involving a fictitious anti-lad magazine called Stu. Regrettably, we [Masthead] fell for it. Also, Masthead's October issue, which has gone to press, will feature a 900-word article on Stu and phantom publisher Stuart Neihardt (a.k.a. Jesse Brown). That article should be approached with a degree skepticism. Brown's prank will be published in the "Experiment" section of Saturday Night's Nov. 15 issue. He could not be reached for comment. The hoax was exposed across Canada yesterday by CBC Radio One's As It Happens. After interviewing Neihardt, the CBC called an alleged Stu advertiser (a toothbrush company) who was unaware of the magazine. The CBC was also unable to locate a single Stuart Neihardt. National Post columnist Rebecca Eckler and op-ed columnist Colby Cosh also fell for the prank. U.S. media continue to be targeted, said Saturday Night associate editor Dré Dee, an accomplice to the hoax. "I don't really know what his progress is for things south of the border but I know that it's something that he's trying to keep open as a possibility. I mean, if you make it there you can make it anywhere, right? Dee says that response to Stu-from writers, illustrators and curious advertisers-has been so positive that plans are actually hatching to launch the magazine once modifications to the original non-existent business plan have been made. "It's fascinating to see just how many people wanted this to be true," Dee says. "I hope he gives me a cut if it happens." We'll believe it when we see it."
Superfox Halle Berry and pug runt Fred Durst a potential couple? Fred apparently flew to Vancouver to visit Halle on the set of the new film "Gothika". Says Durst, "Someone has come into my life that I really feel like, for once in my life, that I really, really bond with like I've never bonded with anybody." Gagged and bondaged and in the trunk of your car.
Toronto city council has now passed a by-law making ticket scalping a fine-able act. Individuals caught trying to hawk tickets for concert, sporting or entertainment events will be fined $500. But not all scalpers are degenerate hustlers. "There's a lot of tickets already sold and I sell them for half price," a scalper named "G" explained. "I'm actually helping the team out." Some are just plain stupid.
Pet monkey adopts pet puppy. Why Annanova insists on reporting this ridiculousness, we genuinely do not know. Why Abrasion reports this foolishness? Because we like to pass on stupid things...
If you're going to be a publisher because you've got something original to share, why wrecklessly rob others of that right to express their opinion, even if it conflicts with your own? And by the way, it's the editors that are supposed to feud.
Glamazons, buck up -L'Oreal Paris and Inside Entertainment throw a fashion fete tonight, Wednesday, September 24th at Brassaii, 461 King Street West at 9:30. Should be a feast of Toronto Fashion Week regulars including contributor and Battista fashionista Jesus Chihuahua and moda struttist Gigi LaFaux.
We don't know how the hell this made it through our editorial firewalls, but after receiving several forwards insisting this link be showcased, we caved to the depraved. Rate away here.
Abrasion sort of forgot to watch the Emmy's. Even contributor and reality tv addict Trini Tran failed to watch the entire show. However, Citycynic blogs a synopsis providing highlights and the mock shock kiss between Gary Shandling and Everybody Loves Raymond co-star Brad Garrett, a la Madonna and Britters. At least this one was meant to be funny...
ESPN poses the question "Are you a metrosexual" proving that 14 month old marketing buzz words do make their way to the dumb jock set. Take the quiz here, paying special note to the simple language constructs and limited use of polysyllable words.
"If he can make [Victoria Beckham] a success, he can do it with anyone" boasts her producer Damon Dash, unwittingly slamming her apparent talent deficiency in the process. Victoria is already plowing the North American circuit, teamed up with Dash to model for his Rocawear clothing label. "If we can make Victoria hot, we can make anybody hot" Dash brags, inadvertedly slamming her apparent lack of hotness in the process. The ex-Spice Girl was dropped by her record label due to poor sales after her debut solo album, but landed a new deal with Telstar last year. Dash added: "I've never done anything corny." Like piss on your on protege. Never.
Opera House tonight. earnest jones on the upcoming gig: "Miss it and die a miserable death."
The New York Post reports that not only are Botox injections up by 50%, but there is a startling trend of "Botox parties" where champagne sipping socialites are gunned with botchulism to stun their faces wrinkle-free. Not just a New York phenom, Botox parties are popping up all over the urbanosphere, from London to Los Angeles. The most troubling aspect is that a large mob of these jolly injectors are actresses, where actual facial expressions are a core job requirement. Many medical professionals are worried about the safety of this emerging party drug. However, Abrasion is happy to report, thanks to the miracle of Botox, we can't tell.
Although this link is sooo 5 postings ago, were just couldn't resist. Nerve provides the top 50 Unsexy List so you best pay attention. Highlights include:
5. Lord of the Rings. The movies are fine, but did you know that if you read the trilogy three times in a year you actually get your virginity back?
6. Denise Richards. Sexy two years ago, but now looks like she's been ridden hard and hung out wet.
7. Nu Metal. Musical genre or soundtrack for gang rape? The debate continues. As fads go, makes goth look positively sensible.
11. Drinks with "sexy" names. Bar patrons who order a "screaming orgasm," "sex on the beach," "blow job," or "long slow screw against the wall" are 77% less likely to get laid than the ones drinking beer. Wonder why.
15. Pilates. Yoga minus the kinky contortions. There are better ways to spend an hour on your back.
21. Over-grooming. Being clean and neat is good. People appreciate a white smile and trimmed fingernails. If you're spending time and money getting your asshole bleached, step back for a sec.
25. Stillettoes. Exactly 87% of women who wear them hobble around like newborn foals.
29. All-over tans. Frequently accompanied by a clean-shaved pubic region, a pot belly and a NASCAR visor. A deep-tanned penis looks like a dry-cured meat snack you bought at a gas station. Tan lines — hot!
32. Tongue Rings. You having a tongue ring in 2003 is like us prancing around in eight-ball jackets. After four drinks you'll slur that it makes oral sex feel amazing. It doesn't!
35. Friendster.com. For a few months, it was a secret cute-kid sex party. Then all your exes heard about it. Then Courtney Love got on it. Then strangers started insisting you'd shared some magical experience with them outside Tuscaloosa. You told them you'd never been to Tuscaloosa and that they must have the wrong person. Then they told you your pet hamster’s name from when you were five and you started shaking.
This will be the musical festival to beat with loads of indie bands from across the country and globe. The billing: "PopMontreal is a four day independent music festival running from September 25th to the 28th. The festival is similar to events such as South by Southwest in Austin Texas, and CMJ in New York City, though built to suit Montreal’s unique bilingual and diverse culture. Distinctly Montreal, the event features a paring of international stars with the best from Quebec and Canada. Last year’s festival galvanized both English and French scenes and featured a wide array of artist's from North America and Europe. Some of the artists included Quebec rising stars Gros Mene, Eve Cournoyer, Marmottes Aplaties and the Dears as well as international ground breakers Neko Case, Interpol, Arthur H, Blonde Redhead, Broken Social Scene, The Sadies, Hot Hot Heat, Hayden and Julie Doiron. In 2003, POP Montreal will take on a larger scale by including two outdoor free concerts and 3 nights at the Metropolis venue featuring major international acts. Pop Montreal is a curated festival with special attention to iconic pop performances, taste-making labels, and groundbreaking artists. The festival explores the role of art and pop-culture in society. In collaboration with SOPREF, this year the festival will host a label trade show. There will also be label showcases, panel discussions, industry sponsored parties and our trademark "after hour" loft parties. The festival is young, vibrant, relevant and, most importantly, a really great time."
Launched by the delightfully subversive anti-capitalistas of Adbusters, blackSpot is a "ground-breaking marketing scheme to uncool Nike. If it succeeds, it will set a precedent that will revolutionize capitalism." Pre-order your sweat-shop free sneaks now and say no to logo culture. Vengence just came back in style.
President Bush said last Wednesday that there is no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved in the terrorist attacks of 9/11. Vice President Cheney blabs "It's not surprising people make that connection" between Saddam and the attacks. Thankfully, that misconception was all cleared up months after America bombed the shit out of Iraq.
Apple's online Music Store has slapped Handel's Messiah with an "explicit" warning. That means the classical composer shares the same space as Eminem, Snoop Dogg and Insane Clown Posse. So who's the original gangsta now, beeyatch?
Online dating sites Cutegirlsonly.com and sibling Cuteguysonly.com bill themselves "Because all relationships start with 'hello'." Apparently all unattractive people end with 'goodbye' since, as reported by reader Ryan McD, individuals deemed less than cute will be ejected from the site. Presumably repository site Uglyrejectsonly.com was shut down due to lack of interest.
Entrepreneuring punk girls want to kick Sassy and Teen Magazine in the ass. Upstart quarterly Shameless Magazine plots a fundraiser tonight at Tranzac, Toronto. Features include live jams from indie punk rawkers The Sick Lipstick, The Creeping Nobodies and Pomegranate Squad. $8 cover and a whole host of girly good times including kissing booth, craft stands and disjointed deejaying from Muchmusic pop brat Hannah Sung.
Abrasion has been overwhelmed by the amount of reader feedback, and would like to thank each and every one of you who has written to us, either fawning, contributing, spell checking or hating. It's just nice to know there are people out there reading our little webzine. So, to increase further levels of interactivity, Abrasion has added a Guestmap! Click the Guestmap link button (but not the one above- it's not live) under the masthead on the on the right side of the screen and add your name, location and a comment. We appreciate your feedback so please keep it coming!
A toronto couple was recently barred from entering America because US customs refused to recognise their same sex union as "a family". The kicker is that the gay couple was en-route to Kansas... to attend a conference on family issues. Add one more issue to the list.
Slow trendy or just plain slow witted? Page Six scorches the odious "trucker hat" trend, in particular the eye seering style of Von Dutch- the L.A.-based line of hot-rod inspired clothing label, favoured by "clueless clotheshorses Britney Spears, Fred Durst, Ricky Martin, Justin Timberlake, Tara Reid - and every other bubble-headed boldfacer without a whit of fashion sense." Toronto's mall crawlers and 905 guido set have gleefully adopted the trend without so much as a wink of irony. However at better music events, including the recent Interpol, Dandy Warhols and Bjork concerts, contributor and party crasher earnest jones reports a dwindling occurance. earnest comments on the Dandy Warhols gig: "Interestingly enough, the prevalence of the trucker hat phenom does appear to be wanning, but I will say one thing about a sizeable contingent of the crowd at the Dandy Warhols show: Welcome back University of Toronto Faculty of Jock Rock."
It begins. Toronto is already sopping wet. Stay tuned with the Weather Network.
Stuff your closets with oodles of vintage and indie designer threads this weekend at Toronto's annual The Clothing Show. From the billing: "The Clothing Show is celebrating another year as Canada's largest vintage and new independent designer show, providing over 190 clothing dealers, new designers, film wardrobe houses, and clothing stores. Featuring the best from independent Toronto clothing & jewelry designers, clothing stores and wholesalers with savings up to 80% off retail. The show also hosts the best selection of Vintage and Retro clothing, along with accessories from across Ontario." At the Automotive Building, Exhibition Place (CNE), Saturday: 11am to 7 pm and Sunday: 11am to 6pm. $8 at the door.
Start strutting, fashionistas. Toronto Fashion week is preening to sashay down the runway.
MacLeans lists Victoria to Vancouver superhot and Abrasion favourite new wave band, Hot Hot Heat, as one of the Hot Young Canadians. Last year, Hot Hot Heat were passed over for the Alternative Album of the Year Juno Award by Toronto mood collective Broken Social Scene. A sweet sweet rivalry.
Abrasion readers have weathered our stubborn insistance that Madonna is a cheap maudlin has-been, best suited for either a lifetime of unscrupulous mocking or well deserved obscurity. As many viewers have written in to tell us to "leave Madonna alone" and "stop knocking this amazing modern legend" or "Swept Away was brilliant" without irony or deprecation, we have this to say. Abrasion is not alone. Besides loads of anti-Madonna websites, we'd like to quote excepts from a razor sharp snark from Peoplenews: "Madonna's firm belief that her place in popular culture is assured has led her to make a number of miscalculations of late: from adopting any image that helps get her publicity to producing sub-standard records; from aspiring to be taken seriously as a children's author to advertising for anyone who pays her. To rapping." And on her recent collaboration on Britney' latest single, Me Against The Music? "Truly a match made in the boardroom."
Ben Sherman Sample Sale this Friday, September 26 & Saturday, September 27. Starting at noon, head to Budo at 137 Peter Street, Toronto for over 2000 unique samples and stock featured by Ben Sherman along with denim greats by Evisu, Itsus, Buddhist Punk, Blue Marlin, Guido and Mary, Miss Sixty and many more. All items priced at 50-80% Off!!! Visa, Interac and AMEX accepted.
Woohooo. Does Idol judge Sass Jordan actually say anything remotely critical or value added? Must Farley Flex congratulate his own choices all the time? Why does Jake Gold look so round on TV and so trim in person? Why is Zack such a bitch? Why are Canadian Idols so blah? After auditioning scads of hopefuls across the entire country, was there nobody qualified that could touch the category of being even slightly sexed up? We watched it last night. The National Post recaps it. Sequel virtually guaranteed.
Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson prayed on his Christian Broadcasting Network, based in Virginia Beach, that Hurricane Isabel, which threatens New England and Southern Ontario, would turn from the coast. He asked God to put a "wall of protection" around Virginia Beach and the East Coast. "In the name of Jesus, we reach out our hand in faith and we command that storm to cease its forward motion to the north and to turn and to go out into the sea," Robertson prayed on The 700 Club. An Act of God saved by another Act of God? Get me my insurance policy...
New York's uber stylish "sound more London than New Yawk" band, Interpol, play the sold out Club Soda in Montreal tonight September 16th, then move to Toronto to rule the Kool Haus September 17th. earnest jones will be in attendence early to catch Montreal buzz band The Stills warming up the set.
Abrasion swore we would never write about this glorified karaoke contest, but after contributors earnest jones and Allegra Di Marco marathoned a vocal cord shredding karaok-a-thon last Friday in Korea Town, Toronto, we buckled under the hype. In just hours, we'll see rubber faced and oil basted Ben Mulroney slither his may onto national television to proclaim the first Canadian Idol. Will it be Halifax's Little Richard-esque mirkin Gary Beals, or Kingston's goggled w8r boi, Ryan Malcolm? You must tune in to the 2 hour finale to find out, because god know it won't be pathetically pasted all over newspapers tomorrow morning. All we hope is that skeleton dude from L'Oreal doesn't make another appearance. He just freaks us out.
Some of the first users of the government approved, Flin Flon grown medicinal marijuana are up in arms. "This particular product wouldn't hold a candle to street level cannabis." "It's totally unsuitable for human consumption." "I threw up." Hard core users- demand more from your government. Hell, privatise it and leave it to the experts, say, like the Hell's Angels. Scared to click through that link, huh? Me too.
Swedish researchers have uncovered that chatty teens are prone to becoming prematurely senile from cell phone usage. Leif Salford, a professor at Lund, told the Independent: "intense use" of cell phones could conceivably make today's youngster "drown in a sea of microwaves" causing poteins to leak across the blood-brain barrier. An adviser to Motorola told New Scientist magazine that governments ought to "stop wasting money" by looking for health damage due to cell phone use. Abrasion would also like to encourage goverments to stop insisting the world is round. It's flat and we don't want to know otherwise.
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