By Natalie Clark, Contributor
The end of summer marks the end of warm weather in the city, meaning that cool fall winds are approaching. And where there is fall, there is coffee. Its warm, cozy and inviting aroma tests your limits as to just how many cups you can have without going completely off the walls. Get ready to channel your inner Rory Gilmore this fall with a visit to these amazing coffee hotspots around Hamilton.
The Holy Cup on James
Saint James, located on James Street North in downtown Hamilton, is home to one of the greatest vanilla lattes in the city. Saint James doubles as a restaurant and a cafe, so you can drop in for a quick coffee or have a seat and enjoy their pancakes topped with warm honey, powdered sugar and fresh fruit. With both indoor and outdoor seating, you can cozy up inside and watch the leaves fall or enjoy the crisp autumn breeze on their roadside patio.
The Not So Salty Espresso
Salty Espresso has been on my recommendations list for a while now. Located on the corner of Augusta Street and John Street, you can visit this quaint coffee shop for a reminder of warmer vibes. Modelled after the “surf life” mentality, Salty Espresso is the place to escape from the cold breeze of fall and remember the warmer days that were. Make sure to try their sweet and colourful Froot Loop Latte!
The Cannon on Cannon
The Cannon has quickly become one of my favourite coffee spots in the city. Although rather small with only a few tables to sit at, the space is full of character and always bustling with people, not to mention they take their coffee seriously! Boasting a wide array of freshly-brewed coffee flavours, espresso-beverages and light brunch items, The Cannon is great for a sit-down to catch up with some friends or to study for midterms. If you tried some coffee and fell in love with it, the shop actually allows you to purchase the beans in bulk, allowing coffee connoisseurs to take a taste of the Cannon home with them.
The Hamiltonian Hotspot
If you live in Hamilton, then chances are that you’ve heard of Mulberry Coffee House. Their warm and inviting atmosphere makes for the perfect spot to take out your books and get some much-needed studying done. Within its art-covered walls, Mulberry features occasional live performances by local and upcoming artists. Located on James Street North, the epicentre of Hamilton arts and culture, Mulberry Coffee House allows for anyone and everyone to enjoy the complete Hamilton experience.
The New Cup in Town
If you’re looking for a new coffee hangout close to campus, then try Phin Coffee Bar (804 King Street West), just across from the Food Basics. The owner, Andrew Meas, is a coffee connoisseur and will make sure you get that perfect taste in every sip. Meas aims to attract mainly students, professors and other campus wanderers, creating a quintessential campus hotspot. The Golden Latte will have you feeling like you are drinking in fall itself. Grab a quick coffee at Phin Coffee Bar and take a fall stroll on campus to experience the beautiful changing leaves and all that fall has to offer!
By: Daniella Porano, Emma Little, and Hayley Regis
The mom or dad of the house knows how to do everything – cook, clean, and fix things. They text you to as when you’re coming home and make sure you’re okay when they haven’t seen you all day. Checking to make sure you ate, and if you did, making sure it was a balanced diet. This roommate will make a comment if you eat dessert first or if you only eat bagels.
When you’re frustrated and can’t find something, they find it within seconds. When you break something, they can fix it. They remind you to clean, do your chores, your homework, and to study. If you’re going out, the parents likely make sure you get home safely. They seem like the perfect person, and leave you wondering how they have mastered all of these skills, and kept up on all the cooking and cleaning with a busy university schedule. You appreciate that they care, but you also wish that sometimes they would just leave you alone.
It’s Saturday morning and I’ve come downstairs to make myself breakfast. There’s an inch of mold in my mug, vomit in the kitchen sink, and disgusting Tally-Ho’s remnants in takeout containers strewn across the kitchen table. The garbage bag on the floor is emanating a revolting smell and leaking a mysterious brown liquid on the tiles. Dry heaving and ordering takeout becomes my Saturday morning routine.
This roommate is the dirtiest person you have ever met. You don’t understand how any one person could be this disgusting, until you see their mom come and clean their room one Sunday afternoon. Because you share a kitchen, and sometimes a bathroom with them, you feel like you’re living in a private hell of toxic filth. There is no amount of angry Facebook rants in your house group or passive-aggressive post it notes that will end this madness. Moving out is your only real option.
Hey buddy, I know it was you. Nobody else plays enough WoW to use an additional 300GB of internet. Also, I get that you go to the gym and you “gotta get dem gainz” but I don’t understand why that means you dirty every pot, pan, and plate in our house every week. Is it some ritual I don’t understand? If so, I apologize, but I also don’t care, I just want to make some mophuqqin’ KD without having to salvage clean dishes from the mountain of filth you create. Also aren’t you in your mid-20s? Probably stop using Axe, that’s not a thing.
“I’m in a band”
We get it, you’re in a band. But the women you bring home in the night aren’t groupies; I’m 95 percent sure you pay them (which is no big deal, sex work is fine) but I’m not super fond of how often you steal my laundry detergent to do your sweaty sex sheets. Please pay your bills, like it’s been months and I don’t really want to pay for all your shower sex (P.S. it’s not conserving water if you do it like thrice a day).
Are you even in a band? I’ve only ever heard you play the same chord over and over and only at 2 a.m. Why must you smoke indoors? Blowing pot smoke into the vent seems like a good idea until the rest of us get confusing contact highs and try to figure out why we’ve eaten all our chips at 3 p.m. on a Thursday. Just graduate already.
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Xavier Dolan’s Mommy follows Diane “Die” Despres (Anne Dorval), a single mother trying to make ends meet. Her teenage son, Steve (Antoine Olivier Pilon), has ADHD and is emotionally unstable; one moment he is sweet-natured and the next he is violent. Along with Kyla (Susanne Clément), a quiet neighbour with an idiopathic stutter and her own troubles, the three form an unusual friendship in hopes that their broken pieces will somehow form a whole.
The performances of Dorval, Pilon, and Clément are operatic in scale, with all three turning in tremendous work. The decision to shoot the film in a 1:1 aspect ratio also augments the film, emphasizing how characters in the story are all confined to some form of a boundary.
Mommy is raw, carnal, and positively engrossing. Like Steve, the film is menacingly incandescent, with heavy scenes of violence and grief punctuated by bursts of humour and the warmth of a mother’s irrefutable, almost desperate, love. Equal measures heartfelt and heartbreaking, Mommy is one of the dearest films in 2014, and will tug at your heartstrings without remorse.
The blunt, raunchy, but insightful nature of Chris Rock’s stand-up lends itself brilliantly to Top Five, arguably Rock’s smartest feature to date. The semi-autobiographical film follows Andre Allen (Rock), a sell-out comedian hoping to be taken seriously, and Chelsea Brown (Rosario Dawson), a Times reporter, through a day of self-discovery wrapped up in not-so-subtle chemistry that ultimately satisfies. During the day-long interview, the pair pose the question, “who are your top five all-time favourite rappers” repeatedly to those Allen interacts with. Allen is reminiscent of comedians like Adam Sandler, who once made genuinely funny movies only to fall from grace and continuously make offensively bad movies.
Top Five allows for the exploration into the precariousness of celebrity, selling out, family, and comedy. The movie, which features cameos from Hollywood’s top comedians, strays from the formulaic nature of the modern blockbuster and ostensibly takes us back to a time where movies attempted, not only to entertain, but to also say something.
A star-studded cast, brilliant cinematography, a script that allows for both unforgettable monologues and snappy back-and-forth dialogue across nearly any combination of characters involved, and a total package of a film that demands repeat watches all make for what could very well be the ceiling of what modern cinema is capable of.
Riggan, played by Michael Keaton, is a washed up actor who used to play in a series of superhero movies. His attempt to reclaim legitimacy comes in the form of a stage production of Raymond Carver’s short story “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love.” This short plot description does not do the film nearly enough justice given the complexity of Riggan’s situation and mental state, how well developed all of the secondary characters are as individuals, and the vastly different relationships that each of these characters have with one another.
Much of the preview and basic media coverage revolves around how the film is set up to look like one long-take, basically that it has minimal cuts or transitions, that most film fan boys enjoy in any usage for how well these shots are usually framed, what climax or point they attempt to build up to, and the requirements and complexity required by the actors in the scene. While Birdman does follow these conventions, the main purpose is to add emphasis to the parallels between the main characters and their roles within the play performed within the movie – this also spills over with the script in self-referential elements such as Michael Keaton’s own experiences with the Batman franchise or Edward Norton being notoriously difficult to work with on set. While the fine line between losing yourself within the universe of the story and these meta components of reminding the watcher of real life events could very easily backfire, it works for the most part in continuing to blur lines between who they are in real life, who they are in the movie, and the parts they play within the play in the movie.
Everything in the film leads itself to brisk, constant action and sensory overload by constantly switching your expectations for the upcoming scene. Every moment is memorable and unique from every other in the film. This is a must-watch.
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By: Emma Little
New year, new you, right? It’s hard to keep the resolution of eating healthy with all the unhealthy choices on campus – especially when you’re hungry! These are some of the best healthy snack options that you can find on campus, or off.
Apples and berries make a great snack early in the day. They contain natural sugars and fast acting carbs. These will boost your energy and allow your body to burn off the sugars throughout the day. Fruit is a great way to snack healthy because it’s filling, nutritious and contains antioxidants.
Where: You can find fruit all over campus! Apples are the most commonly sold fruit. Berries are harder to find depending on the season but can be found at grocery stores.
Hummus is a tasty snack, especially when dipping vegetables or crackers. Hummus is made from chickpeas, and contains those good-for-you carbohydrates. This combination of fibers and proteins help you feel full for longer. This makes it the perfect snack to get you through those long days of class and studying!
Where: Summer Fresh makes the perfect snack packs that come in a few different flavours with flatbread crackers. Summer Fresh packs are sold in most food stores on campus.
Plain Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt is packed with protein, low in carbohydrates, has approximately half the amount of sodium than regular yogurts and contributes to the recommended amount of calcium per day. Plain yogurt is better than pre-flavoured varieties because it has a lot less sugar. Mix in some fresh berries, nuts or honey for added flavour.
Where: While you can’t easily find plain Greek yogurt on campus, there are a few Greek yogurt flavours sold across campus, including at Union Market. If you want to be healthier, try buying plain Greek yogurt at a grocery store.
Almonds & Trail Mix
Almonds are a top super snack because they are high in protein, packed with fiber, healthy fats and vitamin E. It only takes a handful to help you feel full, and helps you maintain a healthy weight. They are also great for your heart! Don’t eat too many, a handful is roughly the perfect amount. Try to find plain, unsalted mixes without chocolate and added sugars, or make your own!
Where: Trail mix packages can be bought at most food stores on campus, though plain almonds are harder to find. If you want plain almonds and trail mix you can buy large bags at large grocery stores.
Protein bars are great and easy to take on the go, but there are many good and bad protein bars out there! If you are having one as a snack, there some important nutritional facts you should check before buying. Protein bars should have less than 200 calories, at least four grams of fiber and the protein should be at least half the amount of the bars carbohydrates. There is a lot of different advice out there for protein bars, so do your research for buying.
Where: The best type of protein bar at Union Market is Power Bar Protein Plus. You can find even better protein bars, such as Quest bars, off campus.
Short, punchy, and at times anxiety-inducing, Whiplash is not a typical film. It centers on an aspiring jazz band drummer and the teacher who pushes him to the brink of insanity. J.K. Simmons is perfectly cast as the loud, abusive conductor, and in a much more subtle way, Miles Teller’s portrayal of the young drummer is just as well cast. From the film’s opening to its climax, their complex relationship plays out in a horrifyingly magnetic performance that stays with the audience hours after the film ends. The finale is satisfying, but unapologetically ambiguous in a way that respects the audience’s ability to imagine what could potentially follow the bizarre “happily ever after.”
Perhaps the most impressive element of the film is its runtime. Part of its effectiveness comes from the fact that an entire tumultuous year in the lives of the characters is played out in just over 100 minutes, leaving the viewer with the concise but undeniably disturbing feeling of whiplash.
While Boyhood got all the credit this year, another coming-of-age film didn’t get the attention it deserved. We Are The Best! is a Swedish movie whose small release and the fact that it wasn’t shot over the span of 12 years probably worked against it. Lukas Moodysson focuses his astute lens on three pre-teen girls who make change rather than a fairly typical boy who passively watches as change sweeps him off his feet.
Bobo and Klara are two best friends who still cling to the notion that punk is not dead in 1980s Stockholm. Frustrated by their tumultuous home life, the two retreat to the community centre to do their homework but are stymied by the noise made by the loud (and horrible) practice of a band called Iron Fist.
Despite their lack of instruments, the two conspire to keep the disrespectful boys from practicing by reserving their own timeslot; thus, their own band is born. What follows is a heart-warming/breaking tale that sees them absorb another lonely girl into their midst and become a full-fledged badass punk unit.
When I first saw the trailers for Guardians of the Galaxy I admit, I wasn’t very impressed. It looked like a rushed, cheesy film that would soon become indistinguishable from the countless other superhero movies that seem to be flooding movie theatres in the last five years. Worse still, I couldn’t help but question the fact that it had a talking raccoon, which – even now – is pretty damn weird.
Instead I found a movie with deep compelling characters, stunning visual effects, and witty dialogue at every turn that proved just how wrong my impressions were. While Guardians of the Galaxy may not be the movie of the year, it possesses a charm that left me laughing even after my first viewing, and is one superhero movie you just can’t miss.
The first thing you notice is the colours. Next, the gorgeous set design begins to permeate the senses. Long before you begin to even fathom the plot or the acting, Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel already has you under his spell.
In a year where cinema seemed to be drowning in superheroes and dark storylines, Anderson’s witty and stylish film is a breath of fresh air reminding us that there’s more to the movies than just explosions and fight sequences. Beyond the vibrant plums and the electrifying fuchsias, Anderson weaves an elaborate cat-and-mouse tale that manages to explore the themes of love and unlikely friendships without ever taking itself too seriously.
Newcomer Tony Revolori holds his own as Zero Moustafa, and Ralph Fiennes’ shines as Monsieur Gustav H. (who knew Voldemort could be so adorable?) That said, the film is a constellation where all the stars create a spectacle much bigger than the individual parts.
The year is young and I’m sure you’ve made plenty of resolutions, but let me tell you something: The gym can wait, this film cannot. Make sure you see for yourself what all the buzz around Wes Anderson’s most recent masterpiece is before it gets buried in all of the treasures (fingers-crossed) 2015 has to offer.
Sparks fly between medical school dropout Wallace (Daniel Radcliffe), and Chantry (Zoe Kazan) amid the skyscrapers, botanical gardens and quirky corners of downtown Toronto. Cut from the same cloth, their witty banter and seamless conversation is every indication of their compatibility. Two people that are awkward together stay together. Unfortunately, Wallace is five years too late, as lawyer Ben has already beaten him to the punch and secured Chantry’s heart. This leaves Wallace with no choice but to prove the age-old fable that guys and girls really can “just be friends.” While, the movie is admittedly unable to escape the clutch of corniness that trademarks every “will they, won’t they” movie, even the most skeptical of romantics must secretly hope that the pair will end up together by the time the end credits roll. This is largely due in part to Daniel’s affable nervousness and Zoe’s doe-eyed charm, but even their chemistry may not be enough for those severely allergic to the word “cute”.
For those, I offer you an antidote: a true cinematographic tour of Toronto. You may have recognized the Harvard bar in Good Will Hunting for its true identity as a bar on Front Street, or New York skyscrapers as Torontonian ones in many Manhattan movies — Toronto has long played the stunt double for other cities in the world, so it is rewarding to see it get credit. As Chantry and Wallace fall in love strolling along Dundas Street, watchers will fall in love with the way the city glows in the rain (if they haven’t already).
There’s been talk of potential Oscar nominations surrounding The Imitation Game ever since its release date in late November. Benedict Cumberbatch, known primarily for his role in the BBC drama Sherlock, stars as brilliant English mathematician Alan Turing, who was responsible for solving the “Enigma” code during the Second World War.
The biopic is loosely based on the experiences of Turing in the 1940s. He was hired by the British government along with a few other code breakers to take part in a clandestine project of grave importance – finding a way to break the Enigma code. If the code was broken (it was said to be impossible) then the British would be able to decipher messages being sent amongst the Germans, thereby revealing planned attacks, co-ordinates, strategies, and other vital information that would aid the Allies in winning the war.
In terms of historical accuracy, this film isn’t quite on the mark. Many liberties were taken to presumably make the film more dramatic, or even exaggerate Turing’s character. Cumberbatch’s Turing has difficulty in social situations, doesn’t understand jokes and doesn’t usually play well with others. He’s a genius – mathematician, computer science pioneer, philosopher and code breaker. He’s also queer, which was illegal in Britain at that time.
Frivolous plot points aside, Cumberbatch portrays Turing brilliantly. He adopts several completely new mannerisms for the role, and the way in which he delivers them is stunning. Overlooking the historical inaccuracies, the film is a roller coaster of emotion that makes for a good watch.
Winner of the 2015 Golden Globe award for Best Animated Film, How To Train Your Dragon 2 once again does not fail to make its audience, no matter what age, feel the uncontrollable need to curl up into a ball and cry. Reuniting man with dragon, the long-awaited sequel explores the values of family, friendship and standing up for what is right.
The film explores the complicated relationship between humans and animals and the damage that can be done when this relationship is not understood. Canadian director Dean DeBlois is no stranger to directing children’s movies that often leave its older audience more stirred than its younger audience. Other than both How To Train Your Dragon 1 and 2, Deblois also co-directed 2002 Lilo and Stitch and Disney’s 1998 Mulan.
The 3-D animation in How To Train Your Dragon 2 is nearly perfect. Regardless of its compelling story, the beauty of watching Toothless soar through the clouds while his silhouette reflects in the crystal clear lake below will leave you wanting to sprout wings and fly off.
By: Mitali Chaudhary
How do you meet someone out of the blue, and proceed to talk about everything and nothing at all for extended periods of time? How do you navigate that fine line between questioning someone and asking smart questions? How do you practice the art of small talk without looking like you’re conducting a study on human social behaviour? For an introvert, surviving a bout of small talk is matter of life and death, but these tips will make it more like a casual stroll in the park.
To get someone talking about him or herself, ask general questions. Once you get them talking, half the work is already done and all you have to do is be a good listener. This includes asking questions for clarification to show continuing interest, when appropriate, as well as maintaining casual eye contact and actually listening.
This especially applies if you’ve only recently met and are still in that sort-of-strangers stage. If you’re at a party, you could start a dialogue about how you both know the host, how the food/drinks are or how the people seem so far. This can then serve as a segue to more personal topics (but not too personal! See point #3).
Remember, it’s a simple conversation, not a job interview. Even though you’re trying to get to know someone, there’s no need for a rapid fire round of questions probing into someone’s personal life and experiences, nor does it add anything to the conversation if you aren’t familiar with the subject matter that you’re asking about. For example, if you don’t watch hockey and ask the other person whether they do, it could stilt the conversation since you probably won’t know what to say after they have responded.
Your interest and excitement will show naturally if you talk about a hobby that you have or an activity you really enjoy partaking in. You’ll also be able to answer any questions easily and your unique personality will also show. However, it’s important to note that conversations are reciprocal. If one of you is doing all the talking, that’s a monologue, not a conversation. Be mindful to not become that person.
Note that this doesn’t mean “be an asshole”. Instead, try to relax and show that you’re comfortable. This will put others, and yourself, at ease and will let the conversation between you flow more easily.
By: Daniella Porano
Meeting the family is one of the most stress-inducing parts of a relationship. Between the awkward introductions, like fumbling around or going for a handshake instead of a hug, and the onslaught of uncomfortable questions, like what you plan on doing with your life, it can be a downright terrifying experience. But have no fear, with these simple etiquette tips and your rockin’ personality, you’ll be sure to ace the first family date.
1. Do your research.
Remember, your partner is part of this family and is the best person to ask for information pre-meeting. Ask your partner about family customs, what they like, or bits of info to get a better understanding of them. Basically, dig around, especially for something that can be used as a conversation starter or to establish a commonality between a family member and yourself. Also, make sure your partner lets their family know of any dietary restrictions or other critical information to avoid uncomfortable kitchen/restaurant/event scrambles.
2. Be helpful and endlessly polite.
Always ask if assistance is needed in setting the table, preparing food, or cleaning up afterwards. Even if they decline, offering goes a long way.
3. Bring a small gift.
Personally, I think the best gifts are something everyone can share. If they love desert, bring along some pie or delicious pastries. If they enjoy drinking with dinner, bring a bottle of wine.
4. Take a page from the family.
Whether they do European-style double kisses, firm handshakes, dinner at 5 p.m., or 9 p.m., order takeout, or concoct a massive home-cooked meal, observe, follow their lead, and ultimately, be respectful of family traditions.
5. Step away from controversial debate topics.
This is not the time to bring up politics or religion, or really anything that makes people heated. It never ends well.
6. Don’t just focus on your partner!
Interact with everyone and make an effort to engage in conversation with other people at the table.
7. Don’t put your partner down
Even if it’s a joke. Seriously, don’t .
8. Turn off your phone
Or, at least leave it in your coat pocket.
9. In terms of how to dress,
it’s a good opportunity to showcase a muted version of your personal style. I’d keep the skin exposure to a minimum and always lean towards the more conservative and clean-cut side of the clothing spectrum until you get to know them better. Meeting the family is almost like a job interview, so your first impression is incredibly important and can leave a lasting impact. Trust me, you don’t want to be “that person who wore a t-shirt that featured a sexually explicit Rob Ford quote to meet Grammy.”
10. Most importantly, be yourself.
As cheesy as this tip is, it’s important to be relaxed and show who you are. After all, you’re getting to know them as well.
By: Nina Gaind
Dream a wet dream of me…
Thinking about your crush before you fall asleep might not be the only way to have an imaginary pleasure-filled night. Falling asleep facedown on your stomach with your arms stretched above your head can increase the chances of having a sex dream. Sleep tight McMaster… or sleep loose…
The miracle drug
One type of OCD medication can cause orgasms when people yawn. That’s a mouthful!
Motown marriage vows
According to a report from the National Marriage Project, one third of married couples sprouted from casual hookups. Sounds more like a 10-year night stand.
International Man of Mystery
During the first World War, members of the British Secret Intelligence Service found that semen could be used as invisible ink. Very groovy, baby.
Driving Miss Daisy
Besides the bedroom, the most popular place to have sex is the car. Get excited the next time you get in your partner’s car. Vroom vroom…
Talk dirty to me
Women are more easily able to manipulate their voice to sound more attractive, but men can’t. When a girl lowers her voice and tries to sound sexy, it is a signal that she is interested in a potential mate, a clue that men pick up on.
Going the distance
Your partner is in China and you’re in Hamilton, what do you do? Luckily, there’s now a sex toy company that allows your partner and you to operate your vibrators at the same time from across the world using a mobile app. Thank god for modern day technology.
The Great Sex-ession
During the recession, the sex toy industry was booming due to the fact that young people were dealing with a lot of stress. When in doubt, vibrate it out!
The male bottlenose dolphin has a couple masturbation tricks up its… flipper. For pleasure, it wraps a live wriggling eel around its penis. That’s one way to save money.
My 7 billion siblings and I
The amount of sperm in one man is enough to impregnate every fertile woman on the planet. One hell of a baby daddy.
Ride my bicycle
Calling all male cyclists! The pressure of your bicycle seat on your groin can permanently damage the vital nerves leading to your penis, resulting in erectile dysfunction. Save your boner, buy a longboard?
Pumpkin spice up your life
Not just for teenyboppers in the fall, but the smell of pumpkin has been shown to significantly increase blood flow to the penis. Would you like whipped cream with that?
Google recently released a new feature on their Arts and Culture app: the ability to match a selfie of yours with an old, historic painting. The internet has been ogling over their selfie comparisons the past week, so we thought we would have a go using the MSU presidential candidates photos. Here are the results...