Cocktail Music: Meghan Trainor

July 18th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Meghan Trainor via YouTube.

Meghan Trainor via YouTube.

Size doesn’t matter to infectiously poppy Meghan Trainor, unless we’re talking about the size of her soon-to-be super-popular new song “All About That Bass.” Going the route of Bonny McKee, Meghan has had success as a songwriter, creating fresh tracks for Rascal Flatts and Common Kings, but the Natucket native is embracing her vocal abilities with her new song that pokes fun at modern-day celebrity and our body-concious culture—all to a beat that has us ready to grab that cocktail and start dancing.

Check it out after the jump…

Read more…

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Global Cocktail: Westin Kansas City at Crown Center’s Cucumber Cilantro Margarita

July 18th, 2014 Joseph Pedro

Cucumber Cilantro Margarita

Who knew that Kansas City, Missouri is quickly becoming one of the nation’s hottest cocktail cities. But if the long list of expertly crafted drinks at Westin Kansas City at Crown Center is any indicator of what the city has in store, we’re booking our ticket. Served at the Brasserie, the Cucumber Cilantro Margarita is refreshing, tasty, and fresh—all of the herbs used in their cocktails are grown on the roof!

Directions

Add diced cucumber, cilantro, agave and lime to a shaker and muddle

Add tequila and ice cubes and shake

Strain over fresh ice in a rocks glass

Garnish with a lime wedge

 

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Victory in Oklahoma as Judge Rules State Ban on Gay Marriage Unconstitutional

July 18th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Afer.

Image via Afer.

A federal appeals court has ruled Oklahoma’s ban on gay and lesbian marriage is unconstitutional, and it must allow gay couples to marry—this decision comes just a day after a similar ruling was issued in Florida. The 2-1 ruling, which actually took place in Denver, is expected to be appealed by Utah’s attorney general, which means gay marriages cannot yet be issued there. According to the AP: “The 2-1 ruling comes after the same panel ruled June 25 that Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage violates the Constitution. It was the first time an appellate court determined last year’s U.S. Supreme Court decision striking down the Defense of Marriage Act means states cannot deny gays the ability to wed.”

 

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Gay Travel: Amazing Afternoon Teas Around the World

July 18th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Passport

Image via Passport

Fold your pinky in!” I’m holding a porcelain teacup in my hand, pinky jutting outward, about to tilt the china to my lips and savor a first sip of smoky Lapsang Souchong tea, when I’m startled by this chide. I’ve just settled in for an afternoon tea service at London’s ultra-fashionable ME London (336-337 The Strand, London. Tel: +44-808-234-1953.www.melia.com) when a staff member, a copy of Joan Cazal’s hefty Tea Time: London’s Best Afternoon Teas tucked under her arm, interjects a bit of etiquette that many of us have gotten and continue to get wrong.

“The pinky should not be out,” she explains, smiling yet firm. “That’s a misconception. It’s silly looking and even a bit rude.”

“Really?” I ask, nervously trying to prevent my pinky from springing outward, as nature and instinct seem to want it to do. It was a struggle, believe me. Across the room, I see a trio of sassy queens, one with pinky out, and I’m jealous.

She’s right, though, as much as my heart and mind wanted to deny it. Further research netted even more firmly worded statements on this matter. Website AfternoonTea.co.uk, for example, in its etiquette dos and don’ts directs: “Pinkies Out? Absolutely not. The common misconception is that outstretching one’s little finger aids the balance of the cup when taking a sip of tea; this is almost certainly not the case and is not only pointless but slightly silly. We wouldn’t recommend grasping the cup in the palm of your hand, but there is no need to stick a pinkie out. It has rapidly become one of Afternoon Teas’ most common faux pas.”

Keep reading over at Passport magazine…

 

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World Celebrates Nelson Mandela Day

July 18th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Facebook

Image via Facebook

To many, Nelson Mandela was the nonpareil example of a leader and an example of a 21st-century hero. Today, the first black South African president would have turned 96, and people all over the world are celebrating the anti-apartheid champion. The iconic figure who always had just one wish for his birthday—for people to give back to their communities—and people around the world are doing just that. Since 2009, Mandela’s birthday has been a UN-Sanctioned, call-to-action celebration called Mandela Day. The spirit of Mandela Day was strongest in South Africa where people paid respect to the 67 years Mandela worked for equality in the nation (from 1942 to his retirement in 2009). Residents rolled up their sleeves to paint, worked at retirement homes, planted gardens, and participated in many other types of community service for 67 minutes.’

You can still take part in positively impacting your community in the spirit of Mandela. “The overarching objective of Mandela Day is to inspire individuals to take action to help change the world for the better, and in doing so build a global movement for good. Ultimately it seeks to empower communities everywhere. ‘Take Action; Inspire Change; Make Every Day a Mandela Day,’” the website reads. To find out more, click here.

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Republican-Appointed Judge Rules Florida’s Ban on Gay Marriage is Unconstitutional

July 17th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Imagever Afer

Imagever Afer

A state judge struck down Florida’s ban on marriage for committed same-sex couples in what is now the 25th consecutive ruling by a federal or state court in favor of marriage equality this year. Chief Circuit Judge Luis Garcia, surprisingly, was appointed by former Governor Jeb Bush and reelected in 2002 and 2008. The case, Huntsman v. Heavilin, was filed in Key West and as of now the ruling only applies to Monroe County.

Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry, released the following statement: “Like an unprecedented wave of state and federal courts across the country this past year, Judge Garcia did the right thing in affirming that committed same-sex couples share in the precious constitutional freedom to marry the person we love. Florida’s same-sex couples and their loved ones want what all families want: joy, protections, security, and respect – just what the freedom to marry is all about. We can now add Florida’s voice to the urgent need for the Supreme Court to take a freedom to marry case and bring the entire country to national resolution, ending marriage discrimination across America.” [F2M]

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The Lust List: Maor Luz Slim Sweats

July 17th, 2014 Tyler Neasloney
Gray slim with green Nola. Photo via Maor Luz

Gray slim with green Nola. Photo via Maor Luz

You worked hard for that bubble butt, so ditch the baggy gym shorts and try on something that shows it off. These sweatpants from Maor Luz may be the hottest thing to walk into your gym, but why stop there? Pants this sexy deserve to be worn outside the locker room!

Maor Luz’s signature edgy LA style keeps getting better every year, and these sweats are no exception. The two-tone front and back, contrasting back pocket, and slim leg are sure to turn [meat]heads at the gym, but the real winner here is the fit. Just look what it does for your, um, assets.

Gray slim with green Nola by Maor Luz, $39.00. Available at MaorLuz.com

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Broadway Legend Elaine Stritch Dies at 89

July 17th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Featureflash

Image via Featureflash

Broadway icon Elaine Stritch has passed away at the age of 89 at her home in Birmingham, Mi. The legendary performer began her illustrious career in 1944 and has been nominated for four Tonys including her performance in William Inge’s 1955 play Bus Stop,  Noël Coward’s 1961 musical Sail Away, Stephen Sondheim’s 1970 musical Company. Her most iconic theater moment is often cited as her performance of “The Ladies Who Lunch.”

Stritch will be remembered for her vivacious, indefatigable attitude and her love of performing that’s captured best in a recent documentary, Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me. Watch the trailer after the jump…

Find out more about the legend’s life over at the New York Times. 

Read more…

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First Sitting Mayor in Mississippi History Supports Gay and Lesbian Marriage

July 17th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
David Garcia Image via Hancock Chamber.

David Garcia Image via Hancock Chamber.

For the first time in the state’s history, a mayor has come out to support marriage equality. Mayor David Garcia of Waveland announced his support for gay marriage when he added his name to Freedom to Marry’s list of US mayors who support equal rights. “We know many people in loving and committed same-sex relationships who are active participants in improving our communities, and we’ve seen how important marriage has been for them and their families,” Garcia said in a statement. “Because I believe in fairness for all American families, I support the freedom to marry for same-sex couples willing to take on that commitment.” [ClaironLedger]

 

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VIP Lounge with ‘Top Chef’ Preeti Mistry

July 17th, 2014 Joseph Pedro
Image via Passport

Image via Passport

Charismatic, openly gay, Indian-American Chef Preeti Mistry first caught our attention as a fan favorite on the sixth season of Bravo’s Top Chef. She currently heads up Oakland’s acclaimed, creative-Indian venue Juhu Beach Club, helping fill out the city’s buzzing culinary landscape and its prolific female chef scene.

Born in London and raised in Ohio, Mistry moved to San Francisco in 1996 with her girlfriend, Ann Nadeau (they’ve been together for over 18 years now), and landed chef gigs at Google and SF’s de Young Museum. Inspired by trips that the couple took to Mumbai during 2011, Juhu Beach Club began life as a pop-up restaurant in San Francisco. A Mission District brick and mortar followed, and, in 2013, a move to Oakland’s hip Temescal neighborhood.

While taking cues from Mumbai’s senses-stirring street food and spices, Mistry’s dishes are inventive, fresh, and original, including slider-style sandwiches called pavs, vegetarianguju chili, and crisp cilantro lemonade. In a playful nod to street-food style, the dishes and cups resemble disposable paper and plasticware, yet are sturdy and reusable. Mistry, who tweets under @chefpmistry, shares her Oakland musts, Top Chef secrets, and, of course, travel tips!

Keep reading over at Passport magazine online…

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