Can We Talk About…. Cold Ass February’s?

Okay we are eight days into February and I have given it a chance but it is cold and rainy as f**k outside… What the hell… April is not for another 51 days what is with all the god damn rain and the cold as balls temperatures.

I thought this was meant to be Spring time when things are re-born and have new life and everything starts to look nice and bright and alive again, instead we are treated to grey, dreary ass days with either constant misty rain which DROWNS a person or windy ass conditions that leave you wanting to live your life from bed, who would be inspired to conquer a Monday for example looking out the window at that shit.

Now we have Valentines days coming around the corner and I will be expected to be excited about that? PLEASE… Valentines is met with contempt from me every year and that sure as hell is not gonna be helped by this depressing weather we are being treated to outside.

So Mother Nature throw me a frickin’ bone and sort out a bit of light and clear skies otherwise I will not make it as a fully functioning human to Pancake Tuesday.

Sounding off and signing off.

The Sounder Xo

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Can We Talk About… Ed Sheeran’s Music Return?

Extremely talented, popular, down to earth, modest you can now add true to his word to the list of things to describe Ed Sheeran. Just over a year since he announced a ‘spotlight/social media break’ Ed unveiled BRAND NEW music to us on Friday, with not just one song, but two new tracks hitting streaming services and radio waves all over the world.

After what must be 500 millions listens to said tracks, it is safe to say Mr Sheeran’s little break was beyond worth the wait. Both tracks are extremely rooted in the everyday being ridiculously relatable to numerous demographics its crazy the far-reaching powers of this guys’ music. Both songs are also quintessentially Ed, the melodies and clever lyrics clearly could have only come from you person, that being the demi-god that is Ed.

Ed first teased us about new music on New Years Day and delivered on Friday the 6th with the singles Shape of You and Castle on the Hill which leaves just one massive question that needs answering….. album Ed, album!! Is Ed’s third release just around the corner or will he keep us hooked with some more single offerings?

I for one do not think I possess the patience to wait any significant level of time before a full length album is introduced to my airwaves, so Ed please a year is enough stop that messing now and lets kick off 2017 right with a full length album like ASAP, yesterday would be good….

Sounding off and Signing off!

The Sounder xo

Can We Talk About….Meryl Streep at the Oscars?

Well then take a f**king bow Meryl Streep!! At the Golden Globe Awards while accepting the Cecil B. DeMille Award, which seems to be a snooty way of saving lifetime achievement award, but diverting from the point here, while accepting the award instead of plugging her latest movie like many others would or giving a speech full of self-indulgence and ego grooming like many others, Meryl used her minutes on the centre stage to say something REAL.

She denounced a certain incoming President elect for his ridiculous attitude, namely towards a disabled reporter, and the hate culture his actions are creating in one of the most incredible countries in the world. To see someone of her stature taking such a strong stance against what she believes in on one of the largest stages of the awards season was beyond refreshing.

And what does that clown come back with as a retort this morning….. that Meryl Streep is ‘overrated’… Meryl Streep!!! Winner of endless awards, nominated for like 100 Oscars, probably the most celebrated actress alive, is this dumbass for f**king real what a childish response honestly say something half-educated you twit!

Like I am all up for an open debate and to express your beliefs but do it from an informed and logical viewpoint instead of making ridiculously stupid statements that have no validation in reality.

Sounding off and Signing off!

The Sounder Xo

Can We Talk About….. New Years?

Apologies on the lack of posts for the last two weeks, I have come back home for Christmas and needed to recover… I am no longer a fish out of water in the midst of Downtown LA so the tone of things may become more general. In keeping with that let’s get down to business on our newest Sounding Off topic…. New Years Eve.

What a croc of shit! A night always filled with so much hype and promise until the countdown is over and everyone realises oh wait it’s actually the same as ANY other night why all the god damn fuss…. This is still the same nightclub… Still the same drinking I am drinking etc.., yet we pay premiums for the same shit and to achieve what? Nothing.

The anti-climax brings a thundering halt to any good vibes for the night and leads you to feeling a bit mugged off by NYE, this guy will be going in with expectations at below ground level so even a mildly okay night will best what I am expecting.

And the good news is I throughly enjoyed myself, I went in eyes open with no notions of what the night will be and to say it was probably my favourite New Years is quite accurate, so everyone lesson learned once you realise the hype and drama of New Years Eve is just a load a bullshit, you can actually start enjoying it… join me won’t you… come to the dark side.

Sounding off and Signing off.

The Sounder xo

Can We Talk About…. Retail Workers at Christmas?

I mean honestly…. who needs or desires that level of niceness in their lives? I mean it is a tough pill to swallow on a normal day but its like on the Holiday season retail workers are force-fed speed or something they are sickeningly nice and it makes me wanna poke out my ears with chopsticks and bite off my own ears… if that were possible.

Do I blame the worker themselves? In most cases no I get that ridiculous behaviour is put in place and encouraged by management but that still does not make it okay… Do people honestly enjoy this fake ass nicey nice act as if the person has just been possessed by Barney the Dinosaur? Surely everyone is with me on this one.. look do I want some rude ass dick wrecking the somewhat ‘cheery’ holiday spirit I have obviously not… I just want a human being level of niceness not this cyborg of personified joy.

A hello, finding everything okay, how is your day and bye is perfectly acceptable for two strangers to exchange in a retail setting, I am down with that, that is all ANY reasonable HUMAN needs or wants and to the people encouraging this kind of shit take a look in the mirror and review your life cause you are living in a world of clouds and candy, grow the f**k up… Christ…

Knowing my luck this will inspire half the American retail workforce to turn into an army of Anti-Christs and be rude as f**k in what is the most retail heavy portion of the year then I will be on here sounding off about that…. but if we could find a happy medium between rude AF and sickeningly sweet we could be on to a winner!

Sounding off and signing off.

The Sounder Xo

Can We Talk About…. X Factor?

Simon Cowell’s reality juggernaut completed its most recent season in the UK on Sunday, where Simon sits as a judge and it was the lowest rated final in the X Factor UK’s history. As an avid fan this makes me sad….but not surprised….

Simon’s return to the X Factor UK after three years away judging X Factor USA along with national treasure Cheryl Cole, Versini-Fernandez, Tweedy etc.., was met with much fan fare but the rating increase back to previous heights (2010 their last season as judges was the highest rated in the X Factor UK’s history) did not materialise and the ratings have continued to drop below the levels of the judging panel without Cowell!

Which poses this interesting question for me as a major fan of the format…. should Cowell return to give X Factor USA another go? I mean after so many years be THE reality judge in the UK maybe letting another judge take up the head judge role on the X Factor UK could breath some new life into the show and result in killer ratings. For example when Gary Barlow took over the head judge mantle from Simon for three series the ratings were much improved on where they are today. If Simon could lure a big name act into the head judges chair it could be just what the show needs….

Plus, I think we could see a win/win for Simon, let me explain. If a new head judge did give X Factor UK improved ratings great but what would Simon do you ask… well it is no secret Simon had much higher hopes for X Factor USA that never materialised ratings-wise at least. However, the X Factor launched during the height of The Voice’s ratings leadership and while American Idol was still a formidable force and ABC was still throwing some weight behind getting a reality singing competition off the ground…. perhaps the X Factor was suffered the effect of over saturation and people just stuck with what they knew i.e. The Voice and American Idol, but with American Idol now taken its final bow and The Voice’s ratings waning due to over exposure by NBC (twice a f**king year NBC really) now could be the perfect time for the X Factor USA to return, revitalised and with America’s favourite Mr Nasty and achieve a better share of the ratings pie.

Fox could definitely use the ratings given its current situation with their only bright spot being Empire… though hopes are high for the 24 reboot and Star in the new year. With no American Idol, Fox could totally make use of a talent contest with the brand name of the X Factor giving Simon’s original format its time to shine so to speak in the American spotlight. With Simon on the judging panel, and proper Simon who is honest, scathing and truthful not this PG version of late and a really strong panel around him, suggestions… Demi Lovato, Katy Perry, Louis Tomilson (all of which have served as either full-time judge or guests judges before), Simon could taste success on both sides of the Atlantic again.

Simon call Fox… Fox call Simon… Simon call ITV…. make this happen

Sounding off and signing off.

The Sounder Xo

Can We Talk About…. Water?

Will it never end with this country and f**king up perfectly good drinks…. first milk then beer now this, water, a necessity to live. Truth be told I am still more pissed about the beer but look lets stay on topic.

I cannot explain the taste its like its stale water if that was at all possible it doesn’t seem fresh at all. Bottled water, filtered water, tap they are all weird as f**k and why what the hell need is their to add shit to water and what god damn shit is being added.

I wake in the morning and I love nothing more than to quench my thirst with a lovely ice-cold glass of water, kick my day off right what more could a man ask for…. instead some slop arrives in my glass which quenches nothing… I would rather just drink cement!

My eternal struggle to climatise to my new surroundings just seems never-ending but surely water is something that is next to universal in most first world countries, alas no America well done that is beer, chineses and water you have ruined for me… well done…. count yourselves very lucky your amazing weather, ice cream, candy and lifestyle is making me stick around… F**king Mer-Ka.

Sounding off and signing off.

The Sounder Xo

Can We Talk About…. Outlet Malls?

Granted we have begun to have such a concept in Ireland but nothing to the scale of what is available here. Today, I spent the day in the Citadel Outlets and the sheer size and scale of the shopping experience was incredible. It housed all the major brands you require in huge units with plenty of selection including your discounted sale items, as well as some in season on trend items sprinkled throughout.

Given its size you may ask was it not daunting or confusing to navigate throughout but it is superbly laid out in a semi-circle of sorts with small inlets housing even more shopping opportunities. It also provides more than ample parking without compromising the shopper friendly navigation layout of the units.

Usually a let down with an outlet mall is its lack of food offerings especially if this is an all day shopping event. However, at the Citadel Outlets that was just not the case at all with a whole food court waiting to house your tired, worn bodies and overheating credit cards, with a number of offerrings like quick and easy e.g. Subway to more substantial food spots e.g. Ruby’s Diner. And for those with a sweet tooth at two ice cream stands to gorge on, I am sure a key attraction in the summer months but for now in the coolness of December a Chestnut Praline Latte from Starbucks should warm any body right up.

The only glaring omission I can pull from this shopping oasis is the lack of an Abercrombie or Hollister which are personal favs of mine though American Eagle can fulfill a similar need for me so the blow was somewhat cushioned.

All in all I felt I realised REAL outlet shopping,  I weep for the pale imitations of my homeland.

Sounding off and signing off.

The Sounder Xo

Can We Talk About…. Beer?

I do love a good pint of beer after a stressful day, and happy hour makes it even more appealing here there is just one issue with what should be the dream scenario, why the f**k is US beer weird why… you guys making a balls of milk annoyed me but I could cope to an extent but beer is a step too far.

It’s so f**king flat and gassy like where is the nice head on the beer….. a good creamy beer is all one would need but instead the pints are flat and gassy as f**k.  The pale imitations of Guinness you serve up there should be false advertising suits being filed all over this country.

After one or two pints you just physically can’t stomach any more of the gassy, flat miserable excuse for a thirst quenching beer. In this heat with happy hour raging my day would be perfected with a proper pint of beer and I am not a beer snob a Bud Light or PBR is fine with me but a proper pint, God I would give anything to get one of them transported from home, to blow the minds of American beer drinkers if nothing else.

Santa Claus this Christmas I just have one wish…. sort out the dire beer situation here mate…. xoxo The Sounder.

Sounding off and signing off.

The Sounder Xo

Can We Talk About…. Tourists?

Recently, I have taken up a volunteer role checking guests in and out in a local hostel and I have in my brief time here come to one resounding realisation…. tourists are stupid… like frustratingly stupid.

Like why come to a country with zero ability to communicate in said country? Pointing, clicking and gesturing at me like I’m a dog or some sort of similar pet, word to the wise I am not so learn an acceptable amount of English to get by, I am not saying  a political debate or a spelling bee, which would be excellent viewing, but enough to get by. I wouldn’t go to a country where I did not have a language I could communicate in, am I at an advantage because English is so widely spoken yes and could I be being slightly unreasonable due to growing frustration with the daily game of charades I am forced to play most definitely but I think it is necessary, a win/win for everyone.

Also, learn some god damn common sense. You arrive into a hostel you see a desk in the middle of the sleeping hall featuring a person waiting for you with a fake ass smile and a laptop…. yes I can confirm that is in fact the check in desk, what the f**k else do you think I am doing sitting here, a full on welcoming committee for his lord/ladyship’s arrival…. sorry to disappoint but no I am not. Another clue would be when you are walking in, face looking like your first day of kindergarten, and someone says are you okay, or can I help probably a good hint they can check you in, a blank yeah or hi is not what I need from you right now, wise up get your head in the game and stay with me here.

Am I asking too much? I do not feel so can we not live in a world where people help each other not to stress out their day to the point sticking your head in a blender becomes a real option.

Sounding off and signing off.

The Sounder Xo