Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Talking Italian in Montreal




image courtesy of manoirsherbrooke.ca

I'll admit that life has been a bit of a blur lately. The winter blahs have left, summer has come and finally, the heat is totally on outside. It has been an incredible summer so far, there is no doubt. Yet, I am admitting to being somewhat MIA, particularly with the blog. I definitely can't blame the summer sun for that. So what exactly has a hungry man been doing since his last posting? Well, besides renovations and re-designing our home with my partner, there has also been the oh so wonderful dealings with personal illness that I am finally starting to feel back to normal again. Ugh, being sick is the worst but nothing that a little rest, relaxation and healing by a pool won't cure. And of course travel, which is something else that can soothe the aching soul - and stomach.

Something else has changed the life and affected the musings and babble of a hungry man blog. It's been almost a year since I have met my significant other and in that blur of time my life has gone through some upheaval - some of it absolutely necessary, some totally unpredictable, all of it needed. He has turned my life completely upside down, inside out, and continually excited to see where this path takes us. He has also introduced me to more family in one year than I ever thought existed outside of TV and films. Oh, have I not mentioned that he is Italian? He is, hence the quite large, or I should say super-large, extended family.

Since the start of us, there has been what seems like an endless (but what I am told is completely normal) parade of family events, and this summer has been no exception with a marked increase in various social gatherings. I have to laugh at myself because I used to think my bi-monthly visits to my parents home was more than enough and now I can't help but feel a little bit guilty about that. Anyway it just came time for us to breath a bit on our own, which is why we are taking off to Montreal for a bit - just the two of us, to enjoy the city and also to celebrate Pride en Français .

What seems to become a habit with us when it comes to travelling (and may I add completely NOT the norm of my usual hyper- planning nature) is that we really didn't have anything planned for this holiday other than our stay (Hello again Le Germaine) and of course hitting the Pride parade and checking out Pride events. I did plan one thing for us, and that's to eat our faces off starting at Garde Mange one evening, and a visit to Au Pied de Cochon which translates to "Pigs Trotter" - yeah I know how it reads but don't turn your nose up just yet, believe me, this place promises and is noted to be a serious gastronomic delight, so much so I am literally salivating with excitement as I type this.

Although I literally won't be parlé(ing) Italiano dans la ville de Montréal as stated in the post headline, I will however, be taking in some serious culture et cuisine de français with the absolute best Italian company.

Coming up: Montreal moments in food and Pride!

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Tragedy in Orlando: Strength and Solidarity




image by Stephen Wilson

A madman decided that the lives of the LGBTQ2 community in Orlando, some of whom were out on a Saturday night enjoying life on their own terms, should die because of who they are. Someone woke up and decided - that day, that night, that they simply weren't fit to live on this planet, breathing the same air as him. Someone - and he will not be named in this post, made that terrible decision and stuck by it with deadly resolve. This wretched, twisted, sad excuse of a human being, killed and injured people celebrating life in their own space, in the sanctity of their own world. These men and women were not in a public space, they were safe in their world with others just like them. I should rephrase that last paragraph and say that they were 'supposed' to be safe in their world. He took away that safety. As a member of the LGBTQ2 community, you look for that space, you crave that space, that shelter from a (very) hostile world. To be free, with others just like you. The gunman massacred these men and women, and took that safe shelter away from them and so many others.

Thoughts and prayers are not enough. There are not enough words, gestures and actions to help understand just how awful, how horrific this incredibly selfish, evil act of pure, unadulterated hate is, particularly to the LGBTQ2 community. The emotional and physical damage the outcome of this act will do to the community, to families and friends, the shockwaves as it reverberates around the globe, is overwhelming. But it is a reminder that for every victory we in the LGBTQ2 community make in the world, for every step forward we take, there are people who are just as determined, just as vigilant to see that we are pushed back, that want to see us die for who we are, who we fight to be, every single day of our lives.

I am saddened and absolutely heartbroken at the loss of life of my LGBTQ2 brothers and sisters. But for me, I won't be cowed or made to feel afraid to be who I am. He won't win because we are strong, I am strong, and made stronger by the show of love and solidarity both within and outside the community.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

New York: a visual feast for the senses


Just as there are people who would lap this video up, there are individuals out there that would think the sounds and sights of this video are anything but a visual feast. I think that's the point. You can absorb New York, and then you can decide whether the noise, the constant movement, the frenetic energy are things you want to handle, or remove from your system.

I run towards this energy. I soak it up. I want to be in that New York state of mind, and this video is my visual bookmark whenever that state of mind beckons.

Oh, and a suggestion? You must put this video's audio on blast to truly feel the magnificence that is New York!



video by James Mauro and Stephen Wilson

Stay tuned - New York stories and pics on the way!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Escape to New York




image courtesy of Stephen Wilson

It's that time of year again. It's that time to hit the road and partake on an eagerly anticipated journey. It's that time for A Hungry Man to once again leave familiarity and escape to the concrete canyons of New York. Oh, how I relish trips to the Big Apple, almost like a cake lover licking the plate after a particularly delicious strawberry shortcake dessert. Great, now I want cake!

Last year was so much fun being re-introduced to the city that I had sadly lost touch with for over ten years. That is a crazy amount of time away from a city that I love more than my own hometown. Now although it's a reunion of sorts, this year promises to be different, not only with a change of travelling partners (goodbye sister dear and hello there partner Jim!), and there will be more of an emphasis on the theatre side of New York than the culinary, but no need to fret, the opportunity to experience all that is New York food will definitely be covered. Yup, I see you there Eatily and don't you worry, I'm coming to see you too.

Look for posts to come over the next few days, and in the meantime how about you take my hand and we'll take a trip down memory lane with last years visit to New York - click here and here to read all about it!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

I Wish U Heaven Prince Rogers Nelson




image courtesy of fandeprincemj.skyrock.com

It's never really been my thing to talk about the deaths of celebrities, especially on this blog. Life is hard enough without having to report about something or someone that you barely knew other than the image they choose to present to the public.

But when it happens to someone who played a key part of your formative years, you can't help but mention, remember and honour the memory. With the recent deaths of David Bowie, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston and now Prince, all legends, all incredible accomplished musicians and artists, it honestly feels like a constant punch to my childhood and teenage heart.

Prince was a big part of my teen years, and with my friends we went crazy when 'Lets Go Crazy' hit the radio. We danced every New Year to '1999', and still do. 'When Doves Cry' is implanted in the brain. And 'Purple Rain'? It was THE song of the 80s. It was played at every school dance, it was all over the radio, it was the song of a generation.

As I grew older and really began to check and collect his extensive back music catalogue, there are so many funk/R&B jams that stand up to anything played today. I was and still am, very sorry I didn't have the opportunity to attend one of his amazing concerts, but I will always have the music.

He has left one hell of a musical legacy behind, but it's one that I will continue to honour and treasure.

Prince Roger Nelson June 7, 1958 - April 21, 2016