Why The #BellLetsTalk Campaign Is So Important

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On social media today, particularly Twitter, you’re going to see the #BellLetsTalk hashtag. Every time that you use this, Bell Media will donate 5Β’ to Mental Health initiatives in Canada.

Why is this so important? Although Western society has come a long way in terms of accepting that disorders like depression, anxiety and related mental health issues affect millions of people and psychotherapy doesn’t have the stigma that it once did, we still have a long way to go and there are still many, many people who don’t believe in asking for help, think that a mental health issue will just “go away on its own,” or the worst, “it’s all in your head.”

Just because you can’t see a physical symptom or a person doesn’t “look sick,” it doesn’t mean that the person isn’t suffering in pain on the inside. We need to stop making these assumptions just by looking at people. Many so-called “invisible” diseases and disorders include arthritis, fibromyalgia, lupus, and many more.

But another, far more pernicious “invisible” affliction that affects millions of people worldwide every single day is depression.

Everyone has a different comfort level talking about their personal experiences publicly or even among friends. I know many brave friends who have spoken about their individual experiences with mental health issues, including people who, on the surface, look like they’re as happy as can be, but the truth is? They’re very good at hiding what’s bothering them.

And so am I. Now, I’m not quite ready to speak publicly about my issues, but I do want to draw attention to the Bell Let’s Talk campaign going on today. Making the decision to get help for my own issues and my personal demons has been one of the most positive steps that I have taken in my life. People with similar issues often hope that this type of thing will “go away” or that it will resolve itself on its own or that they just need a few years to go by and then they’ll feel “okay” or “normal.”

It won’t. Not if you don’t do anything. Not if you just sit there asking yourself repeatedly what’s wrong with you and why can’t you just buck up and cheer up like everyone tells you to do. Not if you continue to hide your pain and expect it not to do long-lasting damage to you.

Let’s end the stigma around mental health issues and be mindful of the fact that mental health has a huge impact on a person’s well being. Please don’t assume you have any idea what’s going on in a person’s head. I know I used to make this mistake, and I have called myself out on it to stop, because it adds to the problem.

One of the biggest lessons I have learned in the past few years is that sometimes, we make the huge mistake of assuming we know what a person is thinking or what must be going through their head. The truth? In most cases, you could not be more wrong, and you have no idea what’s going on with that person.

We love to psychoanalyze others and pretend we know what exactly is “wrong” with them, and we’re so confident that we’re right. We’ll say, “Oh, well, she (or he) was acting rudely because she or he is insecure,” or any number of other theories that we come up with to explain to ourselves why we have had a not-so-positive interaction with another human being. I see people do this all the time at grocery stores or shopping lines in general, thinking the worst of a “difficult customer,” or someone who is taking “too long.”

We’ll say things about them like, “Oh, this woman (or man) must be unhappy in her or his personal life so she or he is taking it out on the store employee,” or we’ll look at a “difficult” employee who is perhaps being not-so-nice and assume, “Oh, she (or he) must hate his or her job and his or her life, so it’s no wonder why he or she is being so rude to me.”

Let’s stop the negative assumptions, realize that there are millions of people out there who need help dealing with their mental health issues, remove the stigma of having these issues, and hope that this campaign and similar ones will encourage people to get the help they need and deserve.

Find out more about the Bell Let’s Talk Campaign

Supernatural Mid-Season 10 Return

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Supernatural Season 10 title card
(c) Supernatural Season 10, from http://supernatural.wikia.com/wiki/Season_10

What I Like So Far In Season 10:

  • Demon Dean–you knew the show was going to have to “go there” at some point, so it was great to see how it unfolded
  • That the Mark of Cain is still a persistent problem for Dean
  • No unnecessary romantic subplots/romantic entanglement/romantic complications for Dean or Sam. Yay!
  • Less Metatron and less annoying, diabolical angels.
  • The show proved that it’s still a good sport when it comes to poking fun at itself while also being very aware of feedback from the fans, which is nice to see

What I’m Not So Crazy About:

  • I think that Demon Dean went away a bit too quickly–I know the fans were anxious and eager to see him regain his humanity, but I would have liked to have seen this drawn out more. It’s the most interesting Dean has been in a while.
  • This whole Crowley and his mom having a dysfunctional family reunion–it got old, fast. She’s very campy and over-the-top.
  • The Castiel/Hannah romantic entanglement thing–yeah, I wasn’t too crazy about this even though I knew that’s where they were going with it for some time.
  • Castiel–this season it seems like the writers aren’t quite sure what to do with him, and I’m not too crazy about the subplot with his daughter.
  • I’m starting to wonder–where are they going to go after this? Who is the “Big Bad” this season? What’s at stake beyond what we already know?

What I Thought of the First Episode Back, The Hunter Games (Episode 10):

  • The epic intro scene with Crowley’s nightmare about a demon mutiny–must be tough having such an evil bitch for a mother πŸ˜‰
  • Metatron: “But I’m your dickwad!”
  • Castiel likes texting–who knew? πŸ˜‰
  • Dean is scary and he’s getting scarier. As he should be.

This piece on io9 (warning: spoilers ahead in this article) aptly summarizes my problems with Season 10 thus far, but we’ll see what happens as the plot progresses. What did you think of this first episode back? Sound off below!

Ranking the Top 10 Best Demons

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1. Hellboy
From: Hellboy (comics)

Hellboy

Hellboy: Cut to the end, will ya? How do I kill it?

2. Crowley
From: Supernatural (TV show)

crowley from Supernatural
The often self-styled King of Hell, Crowley (Mark Sheppard)

Crowley: Why can’t you people just sit on clouds and play harps, like you’re supposed to?

3. Abaddon
From: Supernatural (TV show)

abaddon

Abaddon: β€œWhat’s the matter β€” hellhound got your tongue?”

4. D’Hoffryn
From: Buffy the Vampire Slayer (TV show)

demon buffy the vampire slayer

D’Hoffryn: Behold D’Hoffryn, Lord of Arashmaha, he that turns the air to blood and reigns te – Miss Rosenberg. How lovely to see you again. Have you done something with your hair?

5. Mephistopheles (film version, 1926)
From: Faust (Film)
Director: F.W. Murnau

Well, technically his dialogue was in German in the original Murnau-directed version, but I always had a thing for Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus. Much more quotable πŸ˜‰

mephistopheles

Mephistopheles: Solamen miseris socios habuisse doloris.
(It is a comfort to the wretched to have companions in misery)”

6. Spawn (HBO series version)
From: Spawn (Marvel Comics)

Spawn comics

Spawn: As far as I know, I’m already dead. Which means, I’ll be waiting for your ass in the afterlife.

7. Mazikeen
From: Sandman graphic novels, Lucifer graphic novels (DC Vertigo)

mazikeen cover image dc vertigo comics

Mazikeen: You bag of wings and wishbones. I told you I came under truce, and you drew on me.

8. Azazeal
From: Hex (TV show)

Azazeal hex tv series

Azazeal: Have I ever hurt you?

9. Dante
From: Devil May Cry (video game)

Yes, yes, I know, Dante is only half-demon, but he has all kinds of demonic powers and mojo, not to mention an assortment of demonic weapons, doesn’t he? πŸ˜‰

Dante devil may cry

Dante: Almost…I only take special jobs, if…you know what I mean.

10. Lucifer Morningstar
From: DC/Vertigo(comics)

Okay, okay so it has been brought up many times that Lucifer is actually an angel even though he’s a fallen angel, but I still consider him to be affiliated enough with demons and with Hell that it makes sense to include him on this list, so there πŸ˜‰

The DC Comics/Vertigo interpretation of Lucifer is still the best I’ve seen, even better than the one on Supernatural, but Viggo Mortensen’s Lucifer from The Prophecy gives the Vertigo one a run for his money for sure (not to mention the Devil from The Passion of the Christ, which I still refuse to watch.)

lucifer morningstar dc comics

Lucifer: That’s an eighty year-old Janneau Armagnac. If I’d known you were going to waste it on melodrama, I would have given you the ’78.

See some of your favourite demons on this list? Are there others that you consider to be personal favourites? What do you think? Sound off below!

My Top 5 Holiday Films to Get in the Christmas Spirit

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Christmas Movie Panorama

It’s that time of year again, and everyone seems to have their particular holiday favourites to get them in the festive spirit. I’ve put together a list of the top 5 films I re-watch every holiday season as the ones I look most forward to and some of the things I like about them.

Nightmare Before Christmas
Why I love this film: Tim Burton, creepy but charming skeleton, creepy but charming corpse, creepy but charming love story, a fusion of Halloween and Christmas, a compelling story, and good-old fashioned creepy fun. What’s not to love?

Home Alone 1
Why I love this film: Remember when Macaulay Culkin as Kevin was America’s darling? A cute but sassy kid whose mission it was to defend the house from Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern? Gosh, I miss those days πŸ˜‰ Although I also love Home Alone 2 because it’s like a kid in a candy store with Kevin’s misadventures continuing in the Big Apple, Home Alone 1 is like a comforting teddy bear.

Sure the “tender” family moments are over the top and schmaltzy but it’s good fun to watch Kevin’s hilarious journey from scared little kid to defender of his family’s house. Plus, “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” and Three Stooges-style slapstick humour. Gotta love it.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas
Why I love this film: This is like another comforting childhood teddy bear or blanket. Every time I watch the scene where the Grinch’s heart grows three sizes too big, I get a little misty-eyed because it’s a reminder not to be a Grinch as an adult πŸ˜‰ Whether it’s Boris Karloff’s impeccable voice work (remember, he played Frankenstein) or the Grinch’s hilarious over-the-top devious smile, this short film puts me in the Christmas spirit every time I watch it.

Love, Actually
Why I love this film: Aside from the fact that this film has pretty much all of my favourite British people of all time (although it doesn’t have Stephen Fry or Hugh Laurie, or any of the other Brits I’ve come to admire over the years), it has healthy doses of humour, drama, heartfelt moments, a wonderful soundtrack, and is another feel-good movie that gets me every time. Plus, Hugh Grant dancing around the Prime Minister’s quarters like a buffoon. Classic πŸ˜‰

It’s A Wonderful Life
Why I love this film: There’s a reason Frank Capra’s classic is a perennial staple and remains a favourite for so many folks. It’s a look back, a reminder at simpler times when life seemed simpler, people simpler, but at its heart we can all relate to so many moments.

I should also point out that thanks to this film I can’t take Jimmy Stewart seriously in any of the dramatic roles he plays because he just sends me into fits of laughter, but that’s a different story πŸ˜‰

But I think one of the reasons people return to this film every holiday season aside from the “tradition” aspect is because in this world we live in, we need reminders that humanity isn’t all bad. Despite the hordes of bad news we see and consume every day, we need to know that there is still fundamentally good in humanity.

Those are my top picks that I make it a point not to miss. What about you? What are some of your favourites? Your can’t misses and the staples around your household? Sound off below!