Novel by Dan Brown
Zach, Amin and Mayes were joined by Jessica Smetana in the year twenty twenty two Anno Domini at the Council of Assinine to play Bananagrams and crack the Wordle Cryptex. Subscribe to Cinephobe! Then Rate 5 Stars on Apple or Spotify. Follow Cinephobe on Twitter & Instagram: Zach Harper @talkhoops IG: @talkhoops Amin Elhassan @darthamin IG: @darthamin Anthony Mayes @cornpuzzle IG: @cornpuzzle The show page @CinephobePod Email: email@example.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Zach, Amin and Mayes were joined by Jessica Smetana in the year twenty twenty two Anno Domini at the Council of Assinine to play Bananagrams and crack the Wordle Cryptex. Subscribe to Cinephobe! Then Rate 5 Stars on Apple or Spotify. Follow Cinephobe on Twitter & Instagram: Zach Harper @talkhoops IG: @talkhoops Amin Elhassan @darthamin IG: @darthamin Anthony Mayes @cornpuzzle IG: @cornpuzzle The show page @CinephobePod Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Join me as I break down Chapter 4 of 365 Days, in which Laura puts on a Victoria's Secret fashion show for Massimo... This episode was first released in April 2021 on www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks. 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Blanka Lapinska's Polish erotica, 365 Days, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, The Maze Runner, and The Da Vinci Code.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to all of the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at email@example.com. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Join me as I break down Chapter 3 of 365 Days, in which Laura has a lovely tour of the grounds and a lovely post-breakfast nap in the sun, and completely forgets that she's been kidnapped? This episode was first released in April 2021 on www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks. 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Blanka Lapinska's Polish erotica, 365 Days, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, The Maze Runner, and The Da Vinci Code.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to all of the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Here we are, at the end of 2022. It sure FEELS like the end times, doesn't it? So many of our systems seem worn out. Things feel like they are getting worse. Armageddon. Apocalypse. The end of the world as we know it. People have a lot of ideas about Bible prophesies and what it says about the last days, the return of Christ, and the end of the world as we know it. It can be a little bit scary, especially if you get your theology from Indiana Jones, the DaVinci Code, or TikTok.In fact, the promise of Christ's return is good news. Prophets like Isaiah wanted to give hope and direction and perspective and encouragement to people who were scared, overwhelmed, and uncertain about the future. Jesus wanted to give hope and direction and perspective and encouragement to his followers—who were scared, overwhelmed, and uncertain about the future. My prayer today is that today's message, based on those prophecies of Isaiah and those promises of Jesus, may offer you hope and direction and perspective and encouragement as you and I face a future that feels so often scary, overwhelming, and uncertain.Let's start with Isaiah 2:1-5.Isaiah 2:1-5 (NRSV) The word that Isaiah son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.2 In days to come the mountain of the Lord's houseshall be established as the highest of the mountains and shall be raised above the hills;all the nations shall stream to it.3 Many peoples shall come and say,“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob,that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.”For out of Zion shall go forth instruction and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.4 He shall judge between the nations and shall arbitrate for many peoples;they shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks;nation shall not lift up sword against nation; neither shall they learn war any more.5 O house of Jacob, come, let us walkin the light of the Lord!Support the show
When I saw the title... The Gates of Hell, I had an image of what the cover would look like. Dark... ominous... and a whole lot of red. Well, I was partially right and pleasantly surprised. I mean, this cover is unique, appears to be spot on, and yet unexpected, too. I like that combination. Then I read more about it, and I had the strange sense that I was looking at Liam Nieson's Taken meets Dan Brown's The Davinci Code. Andy Dewitt says I'm not too far off! EEEP! Listen in and see why this book promises to be a page-turner! Note: links may be affiliate links that provide me with a small commission at no extra expense to you Watch Out! This Book Will Send You on a Wild Ride through Palestine! On a trip through Israel, author Andy Dewitt got the inspiration for his next "Christmas book" for his kids. A childhood tradition has turned into a book you'll want to have on your shelf. Taking a historical look at the real meaning behind "the gates of hell will not prevail against it" as his inspiration, Andy begins his story with a twist on an actual bit from his family's life and then sends readers on a harrowing journey to try to save a young (barely engaged) woman from the clutches of a pagan cult. Andy Dewitt also talks about his life before writing (he was a dentist, but he promises no root canals come with the book... I think that's what he said...), being a ghostwriter, and even about another book he was prepared to submit for publication until he found something crazy similar. Now we have to pray that he decides his book needs to see the light of day anyway. The Gates of Hell by Andy Dewitt One Moment She Gets Engaged, The Next, She Disappears from The Face of the Earth On top of a stunning mountain in Israel, award-winning inventor Chase Johnson proposes to his girlfriend, Abby. She cries, “Yes,” and they celebrate as their mutual friend, Tiffany, takes photos. Chase runs to get his buddy Billy, so the four of them can celebrate together. When the men return, all they find are shattered cell phones and a broken camera. The girls have vanished. Chase reports the disappearance to the local police, embassy, and social media, but they offer little help. Desperate to find her, the men use their own innovative technology to follow leads from one end of Israel to the other. When all hope seems lost, Chase discovers Abby and Tiffany's abductors, an ancient pagan cult still alive and well. And unless Chase can win a race against time, the cult is ready to make Abby a human sacrifice at their temple called The Gates of Hell. Get ready for a thriller that will set your heart pounding and your mind racing long into the night. You can find out more about Andy Dewitt on his WEBSITE. Like to listen on the go? You can find Because Fiction Podcast at: Apple Castbox Google Play Libsyn RSS Spotify Stitcher Amazon and more!
Join me as I break down Chapter 2 of 365 Days, or should I say 363 Days, in which Laura has a secret heart condition and Massimo explains his warped view of consent.... This episode was first released in April 2021 on www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks. 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Blanka Lapinska's Polish erotica, 365 Days, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, The Maze Runner, and The Da Vinci Code.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to all of the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at email@example.com. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
NOTE: Our main Twitter account for Patrick Henningsen @21WIRE has been permanently deplatformed by Twitter's censorship department – so please follow and promote our official media account instead, @21stCenturyWire. This week the SUNDAY WIRE broadcasts LIVE on ACR, with host Patrick Henningsen covering the biggest stories in the US, Europe and internationally. In the first hour, Patrick will connect with the Sunday Wire's roving correspondent for culture & sport, Basil Valentine to discuss Trump's return to Twitter, the strange World Cup in Qatar, and Basil's real “Da Vinci Code” experience. Also, we'll link up with Hesher, host of the BOILER ROOM on ACR, to discuss the latest mass shooting in America. All this and much more. Intermission music by Peter Conway, Download it: “Modern World” Get New Dawn Magazine Nov-Dec Issue, Out Now! https://21w.co/nd195 SHOP CLIVE DE CARLE'S NATURAL HEALTH STORE HERE: https://21w.co/shop-clive JAW DROPPING DEALS ON FAST, EASY-TO-USE VPN: https://21w.co/surfshark JOIN OUR TELEGRAM CHANNEL HERE: https://t.me/My21wire SUPPORT OUR MEDIA PLATFORM HERE: https://21w.co/support SUBSCRIBE & BECOME A MEMBER @21WIRE.TV: https://21wire.tv The Sunday Wire with Patrick Henningsen broadcasts LIVE on Alternate Current Radio SUNDAY 5pm-8pm UK Time, 12pm-3pm EST (US), 9am-12pm PST (US) at: http://alternatecurrentradio.com http://thesundaywire.com
Join me as I break down Chapter 1 of 365 Days, in which Massimo's vision from his coma comes to life, and Laura tells us all about how she loves Nordic Walking but hates Italians... This episode was first released in April 2021 on www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks. 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Blanka Lapinska's Polish erotica, 365 Days, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, The Maze Runner, and The Da Vinci Code. Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to all of the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Skip the Queue is brought to you by Rubber Cheese, a digital agency that builds remarkable systems and websites for attractions that helps them increase their visitor numbers. Your host is Kelly Molson, MD of Rubber Cheese.Download our free ebook The Ultimate Guide to Doubling Your Visitor NumbersIf you like what you hear, you can subscribe on iTunes, Spotify, and all the usual channels by searching Skip the Queue or visit our website rubbercheese.com/podcast.If you've enjoyed this podcast, please leave us a five star review, it really helps others find us. And remember to follow us on Twitter for your chance to win the books that have been mentioned in this podcastCompetition ends January 31st 2023. The winner will be contacted via Twitter. Show references: https://www.draytonmanor.co.uk/https://twitter.com/DraytonManorhttps://www.instagram.com/draytonmanor/https://www.tiktok.com/@drayton_manor Danielle Nicholls - Senior Content Executive at Drayton Manor ResortWhen I graduated from Leeds Trinity University with a degree in Media & Marketing and a multitude of marketing placements in 2017, I was set on combining my two passions - storytelling and theme parks.After a year in a marketing communications role with a tour operator, I was lucky enough to secure a role in the Drayton Manor marketing team.Here at Drayton, I'm responsible for creating engaging visual and written content for all marketing channels - including web, PR, email, in park signage and of course, social media.My main focus over the last 4 and a half years has been to build an engaged social community across all our channels – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, LinkedIn and YouTube.I'm forever grateful to work in such a fantastic industry, filled with incredible energy and enthusiasm.https://www.linkedin.com/in/nichollsdanielle/Twitter @dnicholls_Instagram @_daniellenicholls Ross Ballinger - Design & Brand Manager at Drayton Manor Resort (Inc. Hotel, Zoo & Europe's only Thomas Land) Brand protector and innovator... I played a senior role in a busy agency studio team for nearly 9 years. I joined fresh from leaving university with a sort after London placement under my belt.I now produce fresh, engaging, and dynamic design creative for digital advertising, marketing campaigns, theme park attractions, working closely alongside a talented Marketing team. All to promote Drayton Manor Resort in the most effective and exciting method possible.I can guarantee expertise and a wealth of experience, the final outcome of the design process is not the end of my creative input, you can be assured that maintaining brand continuity and freshly injected excitement remains my priority.Spend time with me and you'll understand why I wanted to be an Actor, but you'll be glad I didn't as my energy provides office enthusiasm and endless creative steer.www.linkedin.com/in/ross-ballingerwww.behance.net/rossballinger(Portfolio)Instagram @rossballingerTwitter @rossballingerTikTok @rossballinger Transcriptions: Kelly Molson: Welcome to Skip the Queue, a podcast for people working in, or working with, visitor attractions. I'm your host, Kelly Molson. In today's episode, I speak with two great team members from Drayton Manor, Danielle Nicholls, Senior Content Executive, and Ross Ballinger, the Design and Brand Manager. We discuss the complex rebranding process. And how building a great social media community can mean your fans having your back when it comes to big change. If you like what you hear, you can subscribe on all the usual channels by searching Skip the Queue.Kelly Molson: Woohoo, I've got Danielle and Ross from Drayton Manor on the podcast today. Hello.Danielle Nicholls: Hi.Ross Ballinger: Hello there. Very excited to be here.Kelly Molson: I love how excited you are. I'm just talking, listeners, Danielle and Ross are literally the most pumped guests I've ever had on the podcast.Ross Ballinger: That's it, we'd better live up to that now.Danielle Nicholls: I know, right?Kelly Molson: They've got a snazzy Drayton Manor background behind them, which is looking fierce. But as ever, we're going to start with our icebreaker questions. Imagine that you're just down your pub with your mates. This is how I need you to feel with the icebreaker questions.Ross Ballinger: Okay. Get a few beers in.Kelly Molson: Ready?Ross Ballinger: Yeah.Kelly Molson: What are you most likely to buy when you exit through the gift shop?Danielle Nicholls: Pin badge, I reckon. Yeah, I've got a little pin badge collection.Kelly Molson: I like this. Ross?Ross Ballinger: Yeah, I'm very similar. I'm fridge magnet.Kelly Molson: You can't go wrong with a fridge magnet.Ross Ballinger: No. And we've got a secondary fridge, under the stairs, which where we keep the beers. And that's where all the fridge magnets go, at the end, if we've been to an attraction.Danielle Nicholls: I love it.Kelly Molson: Is that because your house is beautiful and your partner does not want them on her fridge and you have to hide them?Ross Ballinger: Exactly. Exactly that. The wife does not want them on the normal fridge. They're hidden behind the door.Kelly Molson: Oh, I like her style.Ross Ballinger: But I've got to get a fridge magnet.Kelly Molson: Pin badges, fridge magnets, excellent choices. Mine would be a rubber. Have I told you about my rubber collection?Danielle Nicholls: That's interesting, no.Ross Ballinger: So you collect branded rubbers?Kelly Molson: Right. Well, I used to when I was a kid. I'm going to show you them. I've got them on the desk next to me.Danielle Nicholls: Oh my God, please do.Kelly Molson: I'm sorry, listeners. For the people that are listening, this is rubbish. But if you're watching the YouTube video, hello. Welcome to my rubber collection.Danielle Nicholls: Amazing.Kelly Molson: So they still smell. Again, this is not podcast material, but they smell absolutely incredible.Ross Ballinger: Smell really good.Danielle Nicholls: Oh my God, I love it.Kelly Molson: This is an '80s collection of novelty rubbers.Danielle Nicholls: What's your oldest rubber in there, which have you had the longest?Kelly Molson: So there's one in there from the planetarium, the London Planetarium.Ross Ballinger: Doesn't exist anymore. There you go, that's memorabilia.Kelly Molson: Look at my Thorpe Park one, that's my Thorpe Park one.Danielle Nicholls: Oh my gosh, that is a throwback.Ross Ballinger: Oh, that's a good one.Kelly Molson: This is an old one as well. Anyway-Ross Ballinger: Everyone still does rubbers, so we fit in there with you.Kelly Molson: Because I can collect them.Ross Ballinger: Pin badge, magnet, rubber.Danielle Nicholls: We stick together.Ross Ballinger: That's a perfect combo.Kelly Molson: It's like the perfect triangle. We're the perfect gift shop triangle. Okay, all right, next one. If you had to live in a sitcom for the rest of your life, which sitcom would you choose and why?Ross Ballinger: Oh, mine's easy.Danielle Nicholls: I feel like we're going to be the same.Ross Ballinger: Yeah.Danielle Nicholls: Friends.Ross Ballinger: Friends, yeah.Kelly Molson: Aww. Who would you be, if you had to be one of the characters?Danielle Nicholls: I'm like a perfect mix between Phoebe, Rachel, and Monica, I think.Kelly Molson: Nice, okay. Again, another little triangle.Danielle Nicholls: Maybe more towards Phoebe, I'm a bit more hippie, I guess.Kelly Molson: Ross, what about you?Ross Ballinger: I love all the guys. I love for all the guys. Because I just love Chandler because he's so funny. But then Ross is funny as well, when he doesn't try to be funny. But Ross is just such a good actor. And you don't realise, until you watch it 17,000 times, actually how good of an actor he was. I think I'd have to-Danielle Nicholls: Can you be a Gunther?Ross Ballinger: No, no. I think I just have to sway towards Chandler. Just because he was known for being comedic and stupid.Kelly Molson: And now you feel like that's your life role?Ross Ballinger: Yeah, yeah. Yeah, I would go and live Chandler's life any day.Kelly Molson: Okay, I love this. All right, good, good answers. It's what I thought you were going to say. This is what I thought.Ross Ballinger: Did you?Kelly Molson: Yeah, I thought it was going to be Friends. All right. If you had to pick one item to win a lifetime supply of, what would you pick?Danielle Nicholls: That is so hard.Ross Ballinger: I know. Probably whiskey, lifetime supply of whiskey, just coming out the tap.Kelly Molson: It's a good choice.Danielle Nicholls: I genuinely don't know. That's really, really hard.Ross Ballinger: It's got to be food or drink, surely.Danielle Nicholls: It's got to be crisps or something like that. You can't beat a crisps and dip combo.Kelly Molson: Yeah. What about a crisp sandwich? How do we feel about crisp sandwiches?Ross Ballinger: Yeah, yeah, yeah.Danielle Nicholls: Oo, I'm not sure about that one.Kelly Molson: What?Danielle Nicholls: I'm not sure.Ross Ballinger: Come one, you're Northern. You can put anything in a sandwich.Danielle Nicholls: I would put crisps inside a cheese sandwich or something like that. But I wouldn't just have the crisps.Kelly Molson: See, I would do it either. I'm happy to have a filling sandwich with crisps in it. Or just a plain crisp sandwich.Ross Ballinger: I'd do either.Kelly Molson: What I really love about you two is how well you get on. And we're going to talk a little bit about this in the podcast today about your roles and what you do at Drayton Manor. But you look like-Ross Ballinger: Is it that evident?Kelly Molson: Yeah, it's that evident. But even from your social media channels... You guys feature quite heavily across Drayton Manor's social media channels. And, honestly, it just looks like you have the best time ever. And I want to hear more about it. But, firstly, I need your unpopular opinions. What have you prepared for us?Ross Ballinger: Okay, do you want to go first?Danielle Nicholls: As Ross alluded, I'm very, very Northern, I think. My accent a little bit, but more like how I am. So mine is, it's not a bap, it's not a bread roll, it's not a cob, it's a muffin.Kelly Molson: What?Danielle Nicholls: A muffin. That's mine.Ross Ballinger: It's a cob, it's a cob.Danielle Nicholls: No, it's a muffin.Ross Ballinger: Cob. You call it a cob.Danielle Nicholls: A muffin.Kelly Molson: No, it's a bun. What's wrong with you all?Ross Ballinger: Do you say bun? A muffin's a cake.Danielle Nicholls: I say batch as well. My partner calls it a batch, which is crazy to me. But muffin, we'll go muffin.Kelly Molson: Okay. For now, we'll accept muffin. Ross?Danielle Nicholls: Moving on.Ross Ballinger: Mine is, I just think soap operas are crap, honestly. I was going to swear, but I can't stand soap operas. And I know there's a lot of people out there that love them. But I just can't, I can't watch them. I just think they're so depressing. And if they're on, if I accidentally get home and the channel's on where it's on, I get anxious. And I have to find the remote as soon as I can to turn it off. What a waste of your life. What a waste of time, honestly. Hours and hours. And you add that up over a week and a year, think what else you could be doing. Honestly, if I turn one on now by accident, it's the same actors that are in it 20, 30 years ago. And I think, "What have they done with their life as well? They've just been in a soap opera for 30 years."Kelly Molson: These are excellent unpopular opinions. Listeners, please let me know if you agree or disagree. Thank you for preparing those for us today. I appreciate it.Ross Ballinger: No problem.Kelly Molson: Right, you guys work together. Tell me a little bit about your roles and what you do there?Ross Ballinger: So my title is design and brand manager. So I'm technically like lead designer for the resort. And the brand guardian. I look after the brand guidelines. So yeah, I'll produce, with me and my little team, everything that goes out graphically or visually across all the channels, website, printed media. So yeah.Danielle Nicholls: You definitely underplayed yourself there.Ross Ballinger: Did I?Danielle Nicholls: Yeah. You do so much. You say your little team, you and one other person. You smash everything, literally everything.Ross Ballinger: Aw, thanks, Danielle.Kelly Molson: That's a lot of work for you and your team.Ross Ballinger: It is, because if you think, in the industry, I can imagine people on a parallel with us would have bigger teams, bigger resource. Because basically Drayton Manor is a massive entity. It's not just a theme park, it's a hotel as well. It's a zoo. Then we have Thomas Land, which could be considered as a separate entity. So they're what I consider as four blue chip clients. And then we operate as a little agency within the resort that looks after all those. But then, you've got the resort's departments as well, which could be clusters of clients. So you've got catering, retail, they're the big ones I can think off my head. But they all have their graphical requirements as well, design requirements. So yeah, it's a massive entity and we look after it all.Kelly Molson: And how many... Did you say there's two of you?Ross Ballinger: There's two of us, yeah.Kelly Molson: That's mad. That is mad. So I really resonate with this because I, obviously, come from an agency background. I set up my agency nearly 20 years ago. I feel ancient. But what you're doing is you are essentially a mini agency with loads of clients and two of you. It's crazy. So I can imagine it's quite stressful, but also lots of fun because you get to work on a lot of variety.Ross Ballinger: Yeah. Oh, very varied. Yeah, every day is different. And that is not just a cliche that you can just say. Literally, every day is so different. Because it's an exciting company as well, where there's new things happening all the time, constantly evolving strategies, or new things come in and go in. So yeah, it's very varied.Kelly Molson: Danielle, what's your role? Because the two of you do work quite closely together as well, don't you?Danielle Nicholls: Yeah. Yeah, we do. So my role is, the title is senior content executive. So I primarily look after the social media channels, so Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and TikTok. Creating the content, taking the pictures, work with video agents. Sometimes creating a video in-house as well. And all of the community engagement that goes alongside that as well. Whilst also writing any copy, creating the content for the website, and any signage requirements. Literally anything that you see that has text on it, normally, me and Ross have worked together to create that. And with social, it's both paid and organic social media. So all of the adverts you see, alongside all of the organic stuff you see on our feeds. I also help out with PR as well. So we have a PR agency that we work with, but we liaise alongside them. And now, we're getting more into the traditional media as well. So the pair leaflets and out of home magazines, articles. Yeah, little bit of everything now that it's-Kelly Molson: That's mad. I love that you were just glossing over elements of your job that I'm like, "That's a whole person's job there." And we do the social community building and we do this bit and this bit. Wow, yeah, there's a lot. I just think that goes to show, even... We talk to attractions of all kinds of shapes and sizes on this podcast. And I think it just goes to show that even with an attraction that is a big attraction, and it's perceived to be a very big attraction, actually you're working with really small teams here. And there's a lot on each person's shoulder and a lot of responsibility. And I think it's really important that we highlight that, that you're doing a lot there.Ross Ballinger: But the extended team is really good as well. We've got really good team members. So the rapport across the whole team is very tight.Danielle Nicholls: In terms of the marketing side, I report into a digital marketing manager. And she is insane, she's amazing at what she does. And then, alongside me, we also have a digital marketing exec. And how it splits out is, he looks after all of the technical side, so SEO, CRM, that kind of thing. And I look after the creative content. And then we both report in to the digital manager.Kelly Molson: It sounds like-Danielle Nicholls: It's a little team but-Kelly Molson: It sounds like such fun roles as well. Genuinely, they sound really cool. Because I know, Danielle, you are a bit of a theme park... I'm going to say nerd. But you're theme park nut, right? You love theme parks.Danielle Nicholls: Yeah, absolutely, yeah.Kelly Molson: And I'm guessing, Ross, to work in a theme park, you've got to love a theme park.Ross Ballinger: Yeah, absolutely.Kelly Molson: Did you absolutely tailor your careers to make this happen? Was this always your ultimate goals? Like, "I want to work in an attraction."Ross Ballinger: Yes and no, kind of. So I studied to be a graphic designer, went to university for three years. And then I worked as a digital artist while I was at uni. And then I went straight into a local agency, after getting quite a sought after placement in London. And then I worked for an agency for nearly nine years. So I learnt my craft there, really. Worked my way up from a junior, up to a senior creative. And I ended up looking after all the top clients there as well. But almost nine years was enough. I knew I wanted to go in-house because it was at that time, there was a bit of a boom of companies and clients getting in-house designers. Because they knew how cost effective it would be to have your graphic designer in-house. So I started looking about, and I wanted a fun industry. There was no way I was going to go and work for a boiler company. I don't want to bad mouth any other companies out there but something engineering or-Danielle Nicholls: More typically fun.Ross Ballinger: Yeah, I wanted to go full on fun. And I used to come to Drayton as a kid as well so I knew Drayton Manor.Kelly Molson: That's nice to have that connection, isn't it? You know the brand, you've lived it.Ross Ballinger: I've got pictures of me around the park when I'm seven or eight with my mum and dad. So I have that nostalgic connection. And I was a big to a big Thomas fan as well when I was a kid growing up. So Thomas the Tank Engine, I had the wallpaper, had the bedspreads, loved the episodes. So when I knew that the big blue engine was here as well, it was like-Danielle Nicholls: Big boss Thomas.Ross Ballinger: Big boss, yeah, Thomas is your boss, any day. Yeah. So I was a fan of attractions anyway. Who's not a fan of going out on days out? And so it worked.Kelly Molson: Exactly, cool. But, Danielle, you went out and made that happen, didn't you? This was your focus.Danielle Nicholls: It was, yeah. I think, maybe not so much early on, I guess this is different, but from the age of about 13, 14, I knew I wanted to work in marketing. But I wanted to do marketing for a dance company at the time. So I did a couple of placements at some dance companies, Northern Ballet, Phoenix Dance Theatre, places like that. And that was the dream up until about 17, I want to say, when I was at college. I knew that I wanted theme parks. So I went and did a media and marketing degree. And as soon as I got to my second year, I was like, "Right, that's it. I need to find a theme park. I need to get experience. I need to connect with as many people as I can on LinkedIn." And it was my focus.Kelly Molson: That's interesting. Hang on, let me just... Because that isn't a typical 17-year-old's path, is it? They wouldn't necessarily go, "I know that I want to work in this industry, therefore, I need to connect with people that can help me make that happen." That's a really good piece of advice.Danielle Nicholls: Yeah. And I was literally on it, messaging people. I think I messaged, at the time, the PR manager for Legoland. And was like, "Hello, anything you can help me with." I was really a bit brutal. But yeah, then I went to uni, and did everything I could whilst I was there to try and get the connections still. I applied for a couple of grad schemes with some other groups and, sadly, didn't make it through to those. So as a bit of a bridge between finishing uni and starting Drayton, I went to work for a tour operator, who sold overseas UK holidays, but also sold theatre, attraction tickets, theme parks. So it was a bit of a gap between the two.And I worked there for a year, and then the job at Drayton came up. And at the time, I was living in York, working for this tour operator. And I was like, "I've got to go for it." It was a marketing officer job, so a little bit different to what I do now. But I had to. So I drove two and a bit hours up, in my little... I had a little C1 at the time.Ross Ballinger: But I feel that we both came in at Drayton in our respective roles as entry level, really. Because I had just started as a graphic designer. I took a pay cut to come here because I really wanted to start here. It was never about anything like that. So I wanted to work at Drayton. So that proves that I wanted to work. And our roles have both escalated over the seasons that we've been here.Danielle Nicholls: Because I did move so far, and away from my family and stuff, it was a big jump. I had three weeks to find a house and somewhere to live as well, which was fun. But I managed to do it and, honestly, I don't regret it. I don't look back at all. It's probably the best thing I've ever done.Ross Ballinger: If you want it, you make it happen, don't you?Kelly Molson: Yeah, totally. And I think it really says a lot about the Drayton Manor brand that you've done that as well. There is a real... It's clear with both of you, how much you love it. And it's amazing that you've... Ross, you've taken a pay cut. You've changed where you live to come and work and be part of what's happening there. So I think that's a real testimony to the brand itself. And that's a couple of things that we really want to focus on for this conversation today. So I'm going to start with the focus on you, Danielle, if that's okay?Danielle Nicholls: Okay, yeah, that's fine.Kelly Molson: Because I think what you mentioned really briefly, when you went, "Oh yeah and we do this kind of thing as well," is what you said around the social community side. So you have built the social community and I want you to explain how you've been able to do that and what that's looked like. So tell us a little bit about that element of your role.Danielle Nicholls: So I've been here just over four years now. And in that time, we've been through so much change but, also, social has changed so much. So when I first started I was looking at social but it was more, "Let's just post and leave it," kind of thing. And see how it is engaged with, see how it works. But, over time, I've tried to hone it so it's more about a social community, rather than we're just talking at them. It's more we're talking with them and we're engaging with them. Like I say, we've grown into different channels. So we were really just focusing on Facebook. We had a little bit of Twitter, and a little bit of Instagram, but it was primarily Facebook. Whereas now, we've brought in more LinkedIn stuff and TikTok as well, which has really helped. I think in terms of building the social community though, there's so many different to-dos that you can stick to. But, for me, it's more about seeing what works for your brand. Because it doesn't always fit the same, it's not just one formula that fits all.Kelly Molson: And I guess, like you said, about bringing in different social channels, you need to work out where your audience is. I guess where you're getting the most engagement as well. And then, you are a small team, how do you then divide up where you spend your time? You've got to spend it in the areas that you're going to get that engagement. So you might then end up dropping certain channels, or not being as... I don't know, not putting as much effort into those ones, just because it's just not where you get the engagement.Danielle Nicholls: I think in terms of the different channels, they all have a different audience, if that makes sense. So Facebook is very family orientated. You get the grandparents, the mums on there. Whereas, Twitter is theme park fans and slightly younger, it's very conversational. TikTok is younger, but the demographics on there are shifting slightly to be everyone at the moment. Because it's where all the trends are and things, there's a big range. Our audience on there is 13 to maybe 35, 40 upwards. So it is very varied. Instagram is a mix between Twitter and Facebook. So you do get the families and the mums on there, but then you get the theme park fans that just want to see pictures of roller coasters. And with the introduction of reels as well, that's trying to tackle TikTok, so that's really important. And LinkedIn is corporate.But we do have a team, like I say, we have a digital manager as well, but she's so busy with all the other things that she's got to look after. So the social, like creating the content and community engagement, just sits with me. So I have a big plan of all the different channels and the different days. And because I know the Drayton brand inside and out, I know what works now. So we tend to post every other day on Facebook, every day on Twitter. And we try to do every weekday on TikTok. Instagram, very similar to Facebook. But there's not really one that I'd prioritise, necessarily. At first, it was TikTok, at the start of this year, because obviously that was where it was taking off. But now, it's just about tailoring the message across, and trying to keep active on all of them.Kelly Molson: Do you have to really tailor what you put out on each of the channels as well? So you don't do, "This is going to go out across all of our socials." You have to really think about how those... Because I guess there's subtle nuances about how people react to certain things on different channels, and how they might communicate back with you.Danielle Nicholls: I think, from what I've been doing this season in particular, is Twitter's been very conversational. So I've not necessarily been worried about always having an image on there, or always having a piece of media on there. Just some text normally works, so long as it's engaging and people feel like they want to respond to it. Whether there's a CTA on there, or it's just something that's humorous, then that tends to work quite well.Kelly Molson: It's no mean feat. That is an awful lot of work that goes into that. And I think it's really interesting to hear about the tailoring as well. And how you're going to get different reactions, from different people, on different social media platforms.Danielle Nicholls: We tend to get, particularly on Facebook, in the comments, they're always really interesting to read. They're so different to Twitter. Because Facebook, sometimes you get some complaints in there. But because our community is so strong now, we get other people responding for us, which is a good... It's amazing, I love it.Kelly Molson: That's phenomenal.Danielle Nicholls: Sometimes you've got to moderate it because they might give an answer that's not necessarily right. But yeah, a lot of the time they'll be sticking up for us. Or they'll be responding to the questions for us, which is interesting.Kelly Molson: That's really impressive, and I didn't know that that happened. Is that part of, because you've put so much work into building your community, they're now backing you to other people?Danielle Nicholls: Exactly, yeah.Kelly Molson: Wow.Danielle Nicholls: Yeah. They've become our brand guardians without us making them, if that makes sense. Because they're so loyal to the brand, they just want to do all their best for us.Kelly Molson: How does that happen? Is that a time thing? Is it purely because you've spent so much time investing in those relationships that that happens now? Nobody's ever told me this before, that that happens.Danielle Nicholls: I think it's that but, also, like you say, Drayton is such a strong brand. And particularly since I've been here, we've just gone from strength to strength. So I think that helps as well. We also use user generated content. So particularly at the end of a big campaign, so Halloween, we'll say, "Share your pictures with us and we'll share them on our feeds." And that really gives them a sense of belonging as part of the community. Because they'll be scrolling down their Facebook or Instagram or wherever, and they'll see a picture of maybe their little one. Or they'll see themselves and, yeah, they love it.Kelly Molson: Yeah, I love that the whole user generated content is brilliant, because it allows people to see themselves at the place as well, doesn't it?Danielle Nicholls: Yeah.Kelly Molson: So from a sales perspective, I think if people can look at something and go, "Oh, well, that family looks just like mine." Or, "That person looks just like me." Or, "They've got this thing, just like I have." Then they're more inclined to maybe buy a ticket to come and see it as well. So it works two ways.Danielle Nicholls: It's about recognising the top fans as well. So I know Facebook has the top fan badge. And, on Twitter, we've got a closed community group which anyone can join. That's just called Drayton Manor Top Fans. And we, every so often, give them a little bit of information early before we give it to everybody else. Or little things like that, that make them feel special.Kelly Molson: So they feel like VIPs.Danielle Nicholls: So it keeps them interactive. Yes, exactly.Kelly Molson: They've got their own mini community. They feel like VIPs because they get to know stuff early. That's brilliant. Again, I've never heard any other attraction talk about doing stuff like that. Do you think that would be... I always ask about top tips, and what you would recommend other people to do that are building communities. Do you think that would be one of your top tips, is really invest in them?Danielle Nicholls: Yeah. And also, respond in a personal manner, rather than it being very corporate. Include your tone of voice, wherever you can, and make sure your tone of voice is dead on point, according to your brand guidelines. But also, be bold and brave. We always say that, don't we?Ross Ballinger: Bold and brave, yeah.Danielle Nicholls: If you sway away from your brand guidelines slightly, in order to respond, particularly on Twitter, it works really well. Then don't worry too much about that. It's okay, so long as it's in keeping with your values then it's okay.Ross Ballinger: And it's evident out there as well with all the other big companies. And it becomes a news story, doesn't it, when you get supermarkets battling on Twitter. And it's exposure and engagement at the same time.Kelly Molson: And people love that.Danielle Nicholls: That's another really important thing.Ross Ballinger: Yeah, people love it. It's a comedy show.Danielle Nicholls: Yeah, engaging with other brands helps.Kelly Molson: Yeah, they want to know about the people behind the brands, don't they? And if they realise that your brand face, actually there's a human behind it who's got a sense of humour, I think that goes a really long way.Danielle Nicholls: That's what we try and do.Kelly Molson: You do it perfectly, because I love your Twitter chat. You've got a great Twitter chat. We've talked loads about brand today, and that leads me on to what I want to talk to you about, Ross, which is the Drayton Manor brand itself. Because I think, I might have got this wrong, but it's a 70 year old brand. So Drayton Manor's about 70 years old.Ross Ballinger: Yeah, 1950 was when it first came about, yeah. The Bryan family started it in the 1950s. So George Bryan Sr., had this vision to create an inland pleasure resort for the local community. And I guess, in short story, it escalated from there.Danielle Nicholls: We've got a book all about it in the shops.Ross Ballinger: Yeah, yeah. So yeah, we owe a lot to the Bryan family, really, for escalating such a tiny little brainchild into a massive attraction that we are today. So yeah, I can remember thinking that we needed to rebrand years ago though, when I first started. Because I think it's just one of those that was a little bit... I don't want to say anything bad about it but obviously it needed to change. It was a little bit outdated.Danielle Nicholls: It was a bit archaic, wasn't it?Ross Ballinger: Yeah, it was a bit archaic. It stood the test of time and it did a good job.Kelly Molson: So how long had the existing brand been in place, before you got your mitts on it?Ross Ballinger: I think the last logo that we had in the brand was probably in place for about 20 years. I think it's early 2000s, the last logo.Danielle Nicholls: There was always slight variations, wasn't there?Ross Ballinger: Yeah, there was always a few modifications on it.Kelly Molson: But I can imagine that things had changed quite dramatically over those 20 years as well. So you talk about the need for a rebrand, it was really needed.Ross Ballinger: Absolutely.Kelly Molson: What I always think's quite interesting is how long some of these things take. Because I think that people don't fully understand how long a rebrand can actually take you. So can you remember when those conversations first started?Ross Ballinger: Since I started, it's always been a project that was a pinnacle project that we always wanted to try and get on to. But just in terms of budgets and time, we never got around to it. Obviously, it came to the point, I think it was November 2021, when we first sat down and said, "Now is the time to do it." Because, obviously, we were bought out by a big company, Looping Group, and it was the perfect opportunity to do it. It's obviously a new era so it made perfect sense.Kelly Molson: So when did you launch it? So November, you sat down and went, "Right, November '21, we're going to do this." When did it actually launch?Ross Ballinger: Literally-Danielle Nicholls: Two minutes later.Ross Ballinger: Six months.Kelly Molson: Six months?Ross Ballinger: Six months, yeah. We put a brand team together, firstly. And, honestly, because we're such a small in-house team, we knew that we needed some help. So we got agency help, and we got local agencies to pitch in their best processes. So they were the experts in doing it, and they knew what protocols and procedures to go through. And we chose a really talented local agency in Birmingham. Yeah, started the project in '21, and launched it six months later.Kelly Molson: Wow, that's a phenomenal amount of work in six months.Ross Ballinger: Yeah. In, I don't know, design industry terms and the size of the business, that's no time at all, really.Kelly Molson: No, it's not. I honestly thought you were going to say we started talking about this three years ago and it took two years. It was a two year process.Ross Ballinger: The best thing was, is that we were doing that, alongside launching our brand new Vikings area. So we've got three new rides launch. We're launching a new website at the same time.Danielle Nicholls: We had a new booking system.Ross Ballinger: Yeah, a new ticketing system. As well as the regular day to day work and seasonal campaigns to market. It was literally like all Christmases come at once.Danielle Nicholls: It was. Everything we'd wanted for so long, they just went, "There you go."Ross Ballinger: All at the same time.Kelly Molson: You can have it all, but you need to do it in this amount of time. Wow. That is such a lot to all be happening at the same time. But I'm not going to lie, this happens at attractions. Suddenly, they just spring into action. We have just worked with a client with exactly the same. They did a rebrand, new website, booking system, all at the same time. And you're like, "Ah, the world is on fire. What's happening?"Danielle Nicholls: It was great though.Ross Ballinger: It was good though. We collaborated for most of it. The agency were a bit of a rock, really. And they did a lot of the legwork in terms of the brand personality, putting together the guidelines, creating the initial design concepts. But I did sit alongside them and collaborate with them. It would've just been a too big a task solely, on my own, internally, which it wouldn't have been possible. But I'd like to think I had a lot of input, inspirational design ideas along the way, that probably helped chisel the final outcome and the look of the brand that we've got now.Danielle Nicholls: Just logos in itself, you had sheets and sheets of-Ross Ballinger: Sheets and sheets of logos, yeah, logo concepts and variations. But I know I wanted something that was super flexible in terms of composition and layout. Because I know what I'd created before, it was archaic, but it was flexible. It would work on all different platforms. And then the typeface that we chose for the final logo was one of my early typefaces that I pitched in. And the swirl, that was one of my babies, that was one of my original concepts. So I always wanted to push that.Kelly Molson: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I love that. But that's what makes for a good agency client relationship is that you do collaborate. That's how it should be. And they obviously nailed it. And I know that you would've had so many stakeholders involved in this process as well. So I can imagine how big a challenge that was to actually come to a final, "This is what it's going to be like," and everyone be happy.Ross Ballinger: It was a challenge, but only because we had a lot of passionate stakeholders that wanted valued input. And they had strong views, which was very fair.Kelly Molson: So the bit that ties these two stories together, the things that we've talked about today, is that... I think you alluded to the fact, Ross. That when the brand launched, it's a big change for people. The way that you've talked about the brand is incredibly passionate. I can imagine that local people, people that come to visit every week, every month, they are so... The brand is in their heart. So a big change like this can be quite uncomfortable for people. And when the brand launched, there was a little bit of-Ross Ballinger: Yeah, there was a bit of uncertainty, yeah, and a bit of shock. Yeah, they've had a logo installed in their brain for 20 years. But when we wanted to launch the rebrand, it wasn't just about a logo. We did focus on the logo probably, in hindsight, more than we should have.Danielle Nicholls: I think that's maybe a bit of a learning curve, particularly on social. The asset that we used was the old logo going into the new logo, which we thought was great. But then when we put it out, we were like, "Actually, maybe we should have focused more on..." Like you say, brand personality and visions and values, rather than just the logo.Ross Ballinger: Because the end user hasn't really seen the six months of graft that's gone into creating that. And we did portray it in five seconds.Kelly Molson: So they just get the, "Hey, this is new, you should love it." But they haven't understood about the process of why you've done certain things, and the decisions that have been made.Danielle Nicholls: Exactly, yeah. We had a blog which explained it all perfectly, but you had to click through to the blog. People didn't necessarily do that. They just saw the logo and keyboard-Ross Ballinger: But I like the journey we went through because the people that didn't actually really like it in the beginning and really just sacked it off straight away, they're the people that have warmed to it now. And seen it in execution, and how adaptable it is, and how we can get our messages across. And the fact that they love it now, and I love that, that we've turned them round.Danielle Nicholls: Because the main thing we were trying to do, really, is come away from fun family memories, and turn it to fun for everyone. That was the main message that we wanted to portray, particularly on the social channels, and in brand in general. But I think going forward we're definitely going to achieve that.Kelly Molson: But it's quite interesting because I think what you talked about earlier, Danielle, your social community, they would've played a big part in this when you launched it. So I guess it would've been harder if you hadn't already built those relationships and nurtured that community. Launching something like this, would've been 1,000 times more difficult than actually... All right, there was a bit of a bump in the road, but it wasn't the end of the world. And people, like you say, are now warming to it and loving it. Would that have happened if you hadn't put all that work into the social community aspect?Danielle Nicholls: Possibly not. I think, like I said earlier, there was a lot of people, they had our backs. So there was people like, "This is..." Being very negative. But people were responding saying, "Look, they have to move forward, they've been through this, that and the other. They have to move forward. See the positives," which was good.Ross Ballinger: I think as well, probably because we've got such a good social community, they felt comfortable with saying what they thought about it and being honest.Danielle Nicholls: Which helps because we did run focus groups beforehand, as part of the rebrand process, with suppliers, annual pass holders, staff members, literally with so many people. But until it's out there, you're not necessarily going to get that big, full, wider picture. So it did help us with how we were going to move forward with the rebrand as well, looking at their feedback.Kelly Molson: So you actually took some of their... So obviously from the focus groups, you would've taken on board some of the input that you got from those. When it launched, was there anything that you took on board from the feedback that you were getting at that point? That you could look to, not necessarily change, but I guess look at the ways that you implement it in a different way?Danielle Nicholls: I think the main thing was, like we said, the logo situation. Because everyone was so focused on the logo, we knew that, moving forwards, as we were going to explore the brand even more, we had to make sure it was about the imagery and the personality. And including the shop line there and things like that, rather than... I think that learning curve definitely came from the feedback.Kelly Molson: Brilliant. It is such a huge project to go through a rebrand. And I think there's always that anxious moment when you unveil it to people and they go... It could be a bit Marmite. But I think the way that it's been managed, that's the important part of this story, really. And that comes back to, again, it all fits together about how the two of you work together as well. And I think that's quite an important aspect to take away from this podcast episode as well. It's about, it's a team, this is a team thing that happens here. And it's not just about one person. So the brand has launched and then, suddenly, it's all on Danielle's shoulders to deal with all the stuff that's coming back. It's, this is a team thing.Ross Ballinger: Well, no, it cascaded all the way through the company, didn't it?Danielle Nicholls: Yeah.Ross Ballinger: People would be like... Even engineers, and everyone, and HR, they were like... They felt the same... It was almost a little bit of disappointment that the reaction wasn't amazing. But then, everybody felt it.Danielle Nicholls: But we all came together and-Ross Ballinger: Yeah.Danielle Nicholls: Our director of people bought us a box of Krispy Kremes in the office that day. And was like, "There you go, guys. Are you all okay?" And we were like, "Yeah, it's all good."Ross Ballinger: But there's obviously horror stories of brands doing this and reverting back. But we knew that we'd got something that was amazing that we were going to stick to. And once we knew we could roll it out, that it was going to flourish. So we're just glad that we stuck to our guns and just... We had the negativity at the beginning and, now, people love it.Danielle Nicholls: Like you say, we have people coming up to us, just telling me it's good. Saying, "I wasn't sure at first? But now we love it."Kelly Molson: Ah, see, and that's what you want. You want it to be loved by everybody that sees it now. That's brilliant. You just reminded me of something that I saw a few weeks ago. Have you seen the video when Staples changed their logo, they put out?Danielle Nicholls: Yes.Ross Ballinger: Yes, yes.Kelly Molson: That's just like, as you were talking about it, I was going, "Oh my God, I watched that last week." And it's so crazy.Danielle Nicholls: Yeah. And they're all like, "Whoopa." It's amazing.Kelly Molson: "Wow, look at us." And I just didn't think it was amazing either. But I just felt really sorry for the whole team being forced to clap it and, "Yay, a logo." Oh dear, if that's what they thought brand was-Ross Ballinger: I loved it. I just think that's how you should do it, even if it is a bit cringey.Danielle Nicholls: I thought it was hilarious.Ross Ballinger: What they've done is open up the stapler in the logo, and put it on the side. But sometimes that probably would've cost them an arm and a leg just to do that as well.Danielle Nicholls: So much time.Kelly Molson: There's a massive buildup to that happening as well. And I was a bit like, "Wow, that's a massive anticlimax."Danielle Nicholls: A big press conference for it.Ross Ballinger: I just loved everything about it, honestly.Kelly Molson: The next rebrand, that's what you'll be doing, Ross. You'll get everyone in the attraction, you'll launch it on a big screen. I think what you've done, and what you've achieved, is phenomenal. Thank you for coming on the podcast and talking to me about it today. I really appreciate it. As ever, we always ask our guests if they've got a book that they love that they'd like to share with our audience. So you can pick one each.Danielle Nicholls: I think for me... And going back to me being a theme park nerd, this ties in very well. John Wardley, who is-Ross Ballinger: No.Danielle Nicholls: I know, right. John Wardley, who is a big theme park, mainly rollercoaster, designer. He's done work for Merlin, PortAventura, Oakwood, so many. He was really, really big. He worked on things like Nemesis, Oblivion, Katanga Canyon at Alton Towers, was Megafobia at Oakwood. He had an autobiography called Creating Your Nemesis, which basically spanned through his life of how we got into the theme park industry and where we went through. And it's very story based and anecdotal, but it was really inspiring. And helped me create the courage to knock on doors and do that kind of thing.Kelly Molson: Oh, I love that. Great book. Great book choice.Ross Ballinger: That's a really good response to the question. See, I'm a designer so I don't really read. I can read, but I just don't read. I'm very visual, as you can imagine. So I'm just not a fan of reading. I prefer to just scroll through Instagram and TikTok. But I have read books in the past. I remember one book, I think it's probably the only book I have read, was The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. I think it's Dan Brown. But that's only because I was interested in Leonardo da Vinci, who was obviously a scientist or an... He was a bit of an artist and an architect. So I was more interested in his theories, and his Vitruvian Man, I think it is. So I was more interested in his works, really. But other than that, I do own every book by Jamie Oliver, so if a cookbook works.Kelly Molson: I don't know if you should be sharing that.Ross Ballinger: So yeah, I love Jamie Oliver. 5 Ingredients, 30 Minute Meals, brilliant.Kelly Molson: Jamie Oliver gets a bad rap and I don't really know why because he seems like a nice guy.Danielle Nicholls: Are we going back to unpopular opinion?Kelly Molson: Well, I think we should. But also a little story in that. I live in Saffron Walden, Jamie Oliver lives five minutes around the corner.Ross Ballinger: He's down the road.Kelly Molson: He goes to the market in my town every Saturday, and goes and buys his-Ross Ballinger: Oh, I'd love to meet him.Danielle Nicholls: You'd be there for a selfie.Kelly Molson: Ross, join the queue. I'd love to meet him. I've lived here since 2019. I've never seen him once. All my friends have seen him. And now, it's a thing with them. They're like, "Have you seen him yet? Have you seen him?" No. And I feel like, I'm not a Jamie Oliver stalker. I'm not going to go and harass him. I just would like to live in the town and be like, "Oh yeah, I saw him this morning." I've never seen him. My mum has been messaging me once, and she's been in the cafe in Saffron Walden, and been like, "I think Jamie Oliver's on the table next to me. I'm not sure if it's him though. I don't know if it's a fat version of Jamie Oliver, or if it's actually... Oh no, it is Jamie. It's Jamie Oliver."Ross Ballinger: Oh no. I can understand why people don't like him. But he just sploshes his olive oil everywhere, sploshes it around. But he has got that passion for cooking, which is what I resonate with. So he loves what he does, he's so-Danielle Nicholls: You can't knock his passion.Ross Ballinger: You can't knock his passion. So I'm in tune with that.Kelly Molson: All right. Listeners, well, I think that we should scrap Ross's book choice, and I think we should go with the Jamie Oliver book. So if you head over to Twitter, and you retweet this Twitter announcement with, "I want Ross and Danielle's books," then you might be in with a chance of winning Danielle's book and a Jamie Oliver cookbook. Does that sound fair?Ross Ballinger: Yeah, that'd be ace.Kelly Molson: I feel like you were more passionate about that.Ross Ballinger: Yeah, yeah, yeah.Kelly Molson: All right, let's do that then. Thank you. It was lovely to have you both on. I've really, really enjoyed it.Ross Ballinger: Thank you.Danielle Nicholls: Thank you.Kelly Molson: And also thank you for the lovely little tour that I got of the new Vikings area at Drayton Manor, when you hosted the UK Theme Park Awards earlier this year.Danielle Nicholls: I'm glad you liked it.Ross Ballinger: Yeah, we did, yeah.Kelly Molson: It was awesome.Danielle Nicholls: It was amazing.Ross Ballinger: I think that's where you spotted us.Danielle Nicholls: Yeah.Kelly Molson: Well, look, I'm not going to lie, you guys were sitting behind me and you were extremely loud. And I thought, "They'll make great podcast guests."Danielle Nicholls: We were whooping everyone.Ross Ballinger: We had so much energy that day though. I was knackered by the end of the day.Kelly Molson: I loved it. No, you hosted it perfectly. It was a brilliant event. But the new area is fantastic, so definitely go on, book your ticket.Ross Ballinger: We're very proud of it.Kelly Molson: And go on and see that while you can. So thanks for coming on, guys.Ross Ballinger: Thank you.Danielle Nicholls: Thank you.Kelly Molson: Thanks for listening to Skip the Queue. If you've enjoyed this podcast, please leave us a five star review. It really helps others find us. And remember to follow us on Twitter for your chance to win the books that have been mentioned. Skip The Queue is brought to you by Rubber Cheese, a digital agency that builds remarkable systems and websites for attractions, that helps them increase their visitor numbers. You can find show notes and transcriptions from this episode and more, over on our website; rubber cheese.com/podcast.
Today, we bring back returning guest and friend of the podcast, Adam Aldridge, to talk about a movie that really caused some waves in religious communities. Have you seen the movie? What are your thoughts? Listen to find out ours! -------------------- Music used throughout the show created by Jair Driesenga Follow him @brotherjair on Instagram, Facebook, Bandcamp, and Youtube. Logo was created by Grand Rapids comedian Carl Sobel. PODCAST SOCIAL MEDIA: Facebook: The Notes McGotes Podcast Instagram/TikTok: @NotesMcGotesPod Email: TheNotesMcGotesPodcast@gmail.com BRANDON SOCIAL MEDIA: TikTok/Twitter/Instagram: @brandonalberda and Brandon.alberda STEVE SOCIAL MEDIA: TikTok: @stevemadole Our podcast is sponsored by: anchor.fm Leave us a voice message: https://anchor.fm/thenotesmcgotespodcast/message --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/thenotesmcgotespodcast/message
Have you ever had tough questions about Christianity? On today's classic edition of Family Talk, Dr. James Dobson and several of America's leading apologists address your concerns. Josh McDowell proves that the Bible is the most reliable document of antiquity. Lee Strobel points to the powerful testimony of the eyewitnesses to the resurrected Christ. If the New Testament is fiction, Frank Turek asks, Why did the authors reveal so many of their own embarrassing foibles? And Erwin Lutzer insists that the early church fathers believed in the deity of Christ, contrary to the false claims in The DaVinci Code. 2 Timothy 3:16 says, All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness. To support this ministry financially, visit: https://www.oneplace.com/donate/707/29
Join me as I break down Chapters 101, 102, 103, 104, 105 and the Epilogue of The Da Vinci Code, in which Langdon finally solves the riddle thanks to a conveniently placed apple tree, Sophie was parent-trapped, and we finally find the Holy Grail maybe... 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Dan Brown's historically inaccurate The Da Vinci Code, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, 365 Days, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, and The Maze Runner.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at email@example.com. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
This week, we're chatting to S.K. Tremayne. He's a travel writer and novelist, whose new novel is 'The Drowning Hour'.Sean has written many books, under many different names. He had success during the Da Vinci Code book of the mid 2000's, under the name Tom Knox, with his book, 'The Genesis Secret' and its sequels.His new novel follows Hannah, a publicist for The Stanhope, a once grand hotel in Essex. On it's re-opening, some drunken guests disappear into the ocean, and Hannah has to figure out what happened, and handle the scandal. We talk about why, when he's writing, it doesn't matter where he is, the only thing that needs to be good is the idea. Also, why he likes to escape to write, and we get to the big question... how DO you become a travel writer?You can support the show at firstname.lastname@example.org Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Join me as I break down Chapters 97, 98, 99 and 100 of The Da Vinci Code, in which Westminster Abbey is a labyrinthine and abandoned wasteland filled with orbs, grave rubbing, and metal detection... 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Dan Brown's historically inaccurate The Da Vinci Code, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, 365 Days, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, and The Maze Runner.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at email@example.com. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Although codemaking and codebreaking often receive less attention in the public imagination than swashbuckling HUMINT operations and ingenious spy gadgets, they have changed history. The under-appreciation of cryptography might stem from a combination of the complexity of encryption, the classified nature of much of its technology, and the difficulty of conveying codebreaking effectively in pop culture.David Priess spoke with Vince Houghton about the realities and fictional representations of cryptography, as well as the challenges and rewards of making a compelling museum experience out of U.S. codemaking and codebreaking efforts. Houghton is director of the National Cryptologic Museum, the open-to-the-public museum of the National Security Agency. They talked while walking through the newly redesigned museum in Annapolis Junction, Maryland, highlighting various artifacts including early American codebreaking computers, German Enigma machines, the oldest known book of cryptography (from the 16th century), and code generators for U.S. nuclear weapons. They discussed the provenance of highly unusual items and the value of having so many of them on display. And they traded views on movies incorporating ciphers or codes, from The Da Vinci Code to Sneakers to The Empire Strikes Back to The Imitation Game.Chatter is a production of Lawfare and Goat Rodeo. This episode was produced by Cara Shillenn of Goat Rodeo. Podcast theme by David Priess, featuring music created using Groovepad.Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/lawfare. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Although codemaking and codebreaking often receive less attention in the public imagination than swashbuckling HUMINT operations and ingenious spy gadgets, they have changed history. The under-appreciation of cryptography might stem from a combination of the complexity of encryption, the classified nature of much of its technology, and the difficulty of conveying codebreaking effectively in pop culture. David Priess spoke with Vince Houghton about the realities and fictional representations of cryptography, as well as the challenges and rewards of making a compelling museum experience out of U.S. codemaking and codebreaking efforts. Houghton is director of the National Cryptologic Museum, the open-to-the-public museum of the National Security Agency. They talked while walking through the newly redesigned museum in Annapolis Junction, Maryland, highlighting various artifacts including early American codebreaking computers, German Enigma machines, the oldest known book of cryptography (from the 16th century), and code generators for U.S. nuclear weapons. They discussed the provenance of highly unusual items and the value of having so many of them on display. And they traded views on movies incorporating ciphers or codes, from The Da Vinci Code to Sneakers to The Empire Strikes Back to The Imitation Game.Chatter is a production of Lawfare and Goat Rodeo. This episode was produced by Cara Shillenn of Goat Rodeo. Podcast theme by David Priess, featuring music created using Groovepad.Among the works mentioned in this episode:The film The Imitation GameThe film The Da Vinci CodeThe TV show AndorThe film Rogue OneThe film The Empire Strikes BackThe film Sneakers Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Join me as I break down Chapters 93, 94, 95 and 96 of The Da Vinci Code, in which Remy gets a salty surprise, Go-Gettum makes Robert and Sophie a cuppa, and Silas and Aringarosa are reunited... 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Dan Brown's historically inaccurate The Da Vinci Code, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, 365 Days, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, and The Maze Runner.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa has been described as, “the best known, the most visited, the most written about, the most sung about, the most parodied work of art in the world.” She's been immortalized in everything from Andy Warhol's pop art to Dan Brown's bestselling novel, The Da Vinci Code. But there was a time when the Mona Lisa was not well known, if you can imagine – and it took a man named Vincenzo Peruggia to launch her into stardom. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Join me as I break down Chapters 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92 of The Da Vinci Code, in which Remy is a petty thief with a peanut allergy, someone is up to something, and Langdon does what all Grail chasers do - he goes to the library... 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Dan Brown's historically inaccurate The Da Vinci Code, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, 365 Days, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, and The Maze Runner.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at email@example.com. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
This episode we're talking about Hate Reads! We discuss annoyance reading, hate reading vs reading something you hate, completionism, experiencing bad media as a social bonding experience, and 1-star reviews of books. Plus: Books about women murdering! You can download the podcast directly, find it on Libsyn, or get it through Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, or your favourite podcast delivery system. In this episode Anna Ferri | Meghan Whyte | Matthew Murray | Jam Edwards Media We Mentioned The Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels (Wikipedia) "A spectre is haunting Europe” Ready Player One by Ernest Cline Game of Thrones (Wikipedia) Divergent by Veronica Roth “Divergent might have been sloppy in places, but in a bizarre continuity error, both Tris' disabling trauma around guns and an actual gun appears and disappears as is convenient in the final chapters… This violates both Chekhov's Gun and some corollary: if you introduce a gun, it must exist.” (from Jam's review; see also “I'm not reading another YA trilogy unless someone guarantees me no queer people die in the second act”) Insurgent by Veronica Roth The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir Harrow the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir “reading this book felt like having to eat three bags of raw spinach before I was allowed the ice cream sundae I'd been promised” (from Matthew's review) The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown Links, Articles, and Things 161 (number) (Wikipedia) Schadenfreude (Wikipedia) Mark Oshiro (who Jam mentioned) appears to have deleted their YouTube channel? Or Something? You can still go to their website and the Mark Reads website. Hazel & Katniss & Harry & Starr Podcast Episode on Ready Player One A recent(ish) episode of Watch+Play (there's a lot of them!) There's also this playlist of shorter, edited videos if you don't want to commit Hark (Jam's holiday music podcast) Hot take (Wikipedia) Hate-watching (Wikipedia) Episode 011 - Religious Fiction (the one in which Anna read the book she hated) BookTok (Wikipedia) Matthew can't find the specific X-Men review he mentioned, but it's buried in this site somewhere (that link specifically is to a scathing review of the final issue of Mutant X) Show, don't tell (Wikipedia) Questions What Romance genres do you want us to read? What comic would you use to introduce superhero comics to adults (who haven't read them before)? Twitter thread Experimental Fiction by BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, & People of Colour) Authors Every month Book Club for Masochists: A Readers' Advisory Podcasts chooses a genre at random and we read and discuss books from that genre. We also put together book lists for each episode/genre that feature works by BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, & People of Colour) authors. All of the lists can be found here. Aphasia by Mauro Javier Cárdenas When I Hit You: Or, A Portrait of the Writer as a Young Wife by Meena Kandasamy Big City by Marream Krollos Search History by Eugene Lim Dreaming of You: A Novel in Verse by Melissa Lozada-Oliva The Story of My Teeth by Valeria Luiselli This Could Have Become Ramayan Chamar's Tale: Two Anti-Novels by Subimal Misra, translated by V. Ramaswamy If an Egyptian Cannot Speak English by Noor Naga Oreo by Fran Ross We Cast a Shadow by Maurice Carlos Ruffin Pedro Páramo by Juan Rulfo, translated by Margaret Sayers Peden Noopiming: The Cure for White Ladies by Leanne Betasamosake Simpson I was the President's Mistress!! by Miguel Syjuco Split Tooth by Tanya Tagaq Savage Tongues by Azareen Van der Vliet Oloomi Give us feedback! Fill out the form to ask for a recommendation or suggest a genre or title for us to read! Check out our Tumblr, follow us on Twitter or Instagram, join our Facebook Group, or send us an email! Join us again on Tuesday, November 1st we'll be discussing the genre of Investigative Journalism! Then on Tuesday, November 15th we'll be talking about Podcasts!
“The only real obstacles are the imaginary ones.”— Robert Edward GrantRobert is a successful entrepreneur, best-selling author of PHILOMATH, prolific inventor, and founder of several corporate enterprises. Additionally, he is also a prodigious artist, sculptor, music theorist, musician, and author of several research and patent publications spanning biology, DNA combinatorics, number theory, geometry, and physics.Robert Edward Grant is the Founder, Chairman, and Managing Partner of Strathspey Crown LLC, a growth equity holding company based in Newport Beach, CA with a broad portfolio of company and asset holdings spanning healthcare, clean energy, social media, and financial technology.In addition, he is the Founder, Chairman and CEO of Crown Sterling Limited LLC, a next-generation Cryptography company, based on discoveries from his work in geometry and mathematics.He served as the founding CEO of AccessElite Corp from April, 2017 until July, 2018. Likewise, he served as the founding CEO of ALPHAEON Corporation from February, 2013 until August 2016.In 2010 he was the CEO and President of Bausch and Lomb Surgical. Prior to this, from 2006 to 2010 he led Allergan Medical as President and led $3.4 billion Allergan-Inamed post-acquisition integration.Robert joined Biolase in 2003 as a chief operating officer and served as Director, Chairman of the Board, CEO, President, COO, and CFO of Biolase Technology.Robert has served on several corporate boards. He served as an independent Board Director at Myoscience, Inc., Acufocus, Inc. and ReShape Medical, Inc and presently serves on the boards of ALPHAEON Corporation and Zelegent, Inc. Additionally, he serves as Chairman and Founder of Crown Sterling Ltd, a Fintech/Cryptography subsidiary of Strathspey Crown LLC.Embarking on a journey to expose the real life Da Vinci Code, polymath Robert Grant delves into divine mathematical proportions to explore the nature of our universe on his TV show, Code X on Gaia.For more info and to contact Robert Edward Grant visit:https://robertedwardgrant.com/https://www.instagram.com/robertedwardgrant/https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2MN4AlpbY9NYxuYH-ecoCQhttps://www.gaia.com/series/code-xhttps://robertedwardgrant.com/links/Accredited Investor Podcast- sign up to our email list to and get notified of new episodes, bonus content, and potential deal opportunities: https://www.accreditedinvestorpodcast.com/To learn more about Jonathan's mobile home park real estate Fund, as our next Fund raise is $50 million: https://www.midwestparkcapital.com/To learn more about Jonathan's business growth and digital marketing consulting: https://www.revenueascend.com/consulting/To those looking to potential exit or sell their business or talk about potential business partnerships with Jonathan:https://www.businesscashout.com/
We are talking about the Tom Hanks Tournament that fans of Twitter and Facebook voted on. Please let us know what your favorite Tom Hanks Movie is. TOY STORY 2 (1999) Splash (1984) THE BONFIRE OF THE VANITIES (1990) TOY STORY (1995) THE CIRCLE (2017) TOY STORY 3 (2010) ITHACA (2015) TOY STORY 4 (2019) INFERNO (2016) BIG (1988) THE DA VINCI CODE (2006) CATCH ME IF YOU CAN (2002) PINOCCHIO (2022) APOLLO 13 (1995) LARRY CROWNE (2011) A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD (2019) ANGELS & DEMONS (2009) CAPTAIN PHILLIPS (2013) EXTREMELY LOUD & INCREDIBLY CLOSE (2011) SAVING PRIVATE RYAN (1998) THE MAN WITH ONE RED SHOE (1985) THAT THING YOU DO! (1996) THE MONEY PIT (1986) BRIDGE OF SPIES (2015) TURNER & HOOCH (1989) CAST AWAY (2000) DRAGNET (1987) THE POST (2017) THE 'BURBS (1989) NEWS OF THE WORLD (2020) NOTHING IN COMMON (1986) SULLY (2016) BACHELOR PARTY (1984) CHARLIE WILSON'S WAR (2007) THE LADYKILLERS (2004) ROAD TO PERDITION (2002) THE POLAR EXPRESS (2004) A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN (1992) VOLUNTEERS (1985) SAVING MR. BANKS (2013) PUNCHLINE (1988) ELVIS (2022) THE TERMINAL (2004) THE GREEN MILE (1999) JOE VERSUS THE VOLCANO (1990) PHILADELPHIA (1993) CLOUD ATLAS (2012) GREYHOUND (2020) YOU'VE GOT MAIL (1998) SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE (1993) FORREST GUMP (1994) THE GREAT BUCK HOWARD (2008) A HOLOGRAM FOR THE KING (2016) --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/mass-debaters/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/mass-debaters/support
Join me as I break down Chapters 83, 84, 85 and 86 of The Da Vinci Code, in which the threesome interrupt an altar boy's vacuuming, Teabing performed Caesar with his todger out, and Fache, Remy and Silas are all on the sauce... 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Dan Brown's historically inaccurate The Da Vinci Code, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, 365 Days, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, and The Maze Runner.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
There is a line in the film "The Da Vinci Code" which I have always liked: "Can you know a thing and never say it again?" The biggest problem with knowing something is that it automatically means that one cannot be blissfully ignorant of what it means and how it effects ones thinking and actions. when we know something, it compels us to use that knowledge - for good or for bad. But it must be used. I haven't had much to say about the news lately, because the more I study the past - and you can thank the Anti-federalists for that - the more the knowledge of what I am seeing and learning causes me to become more and more skeptical of the motivations and actions of the newsmakers around us. In the words of the Anti-Federalist, Cato, "Beware of those who wish to influence your passions, and to make you dupes to their resentments and little interests..." --- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/plausibly-live/message
When long time trekker, writer, and anthropologist Beebe Bahrami made her first full 500-mile hike on the Camino de Santiago,via the Way of Saint James, across southern France and northern Spain, she met French and Spanish pilgrims who told her that the Camino was more than a Christian pilgrimage. They explained that it also was a great leyline, a path of earth energy that could transform one by walking it. They added that under the 1,200-year-old Christian pilgrimage road there was a more ancient, pre-Christian initiatory path that could take one deeper into spiritual experience and consciousness. A person engaged it by looking for signs along the way. Signs? Many, she learned, but that the most potent were those associated with the goose. The leyline idea made sense to her for she was already feeling it as she stepped along, an uncanny hum from the earth that seemed to support her every step. But signs and geese? What did this have to do with pilgrimage, let alone spiritual initiation? She dismissed it as a wonky idea and dropped it quickly on the trail and forgot about it. But the goose would not leave her alone. It appeared as Bahrami walked, in village and landscape feature names, on medieval churches and monasteries, and most unusually, as a part of a massive inlaid stone board game, the Game of the Goose, in the Plaza de Santiago, the Spanish name for Saint James, in the Riojan city of Logroño. A popular European children's game similar to Snakes and Ladders, in Logroño Bahrami learned that the Game of the Goose was intentionally set there by city planners and with church's blessings to serve as a metaphor for the pilgrimage, as well as for life. She learned that the goose was seen as a creature of luck. But what else did the goose mean, beyond luck, signs, and children's game? What really led it to become associated with spiritual initiation, pilgrimage, and the Camino? No one seemed able to give her a straight answer but by now, she was intrigued. It took Bahrami three returns on three more through-treks on pilgrim paths in southwestern France and northern Spain to unearth the answers, ones that were rooted in ancient, pre-Christian times and that had survived to the present in the seemingly innocuous form of the goose. As Bahrami pursued the mystery of the goose, part skeptic and part seeker, she encountered wise and humorous locals, quirky and questing pilgrims, and unusual evidence in stones, local stories, and practices that revealed that the way of the wild goose was indeed a real and vibrant pathway, a parallel universe to the Christian Camino de Santiago. She discovered that though the medieval Camino was officially dedicated to Saint James the Greater, under the surface still dwelled older native goddesses and gods who continued to influence the way. Most stunning, she found that the goose was very likely an ancient Eurasian earth-centered mother goddess who took many forms but the goose was among her most prominent forms or association. Ideas about the goose were crumbs, clues, and survivors of an older spirituality, ones that even found their way into stories of Mother Goose. In all this, what Bahrami did not anticipate was that the outer goose adventure would take on an inner twist, that way of the wild goose would pull her into her own initiatory journey. She began as a curious bumbling trekker and ended a seeker on a full-blown medieval adventure in modern times. This three part, outer and inner adventure of The Way of the Wild Goose is a travel narrative about wild nature, ancient roads, and mysterious lore that tells a modern story of initiation, challenge, trail magic, and deep personal transformation. Something of a cross between Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods, Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat, Pray, Love, and Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code, The Way of the Wild Goose is a travel narrative and a detective...
Tonight we deep dive into what may be the biggest mystery in psychedelic history: "How did an Austrian novelist know about LSD years before Albert Hoffman "discovered" it in his laboratory? how did he know that the ergot fungus was the secret ingredient in the Eleusinian Mysteries of Ancient Greece, years before the hypothesis was first revealed by Carl Ruck and Gordon Wasson?" Leo Perutz's "St. Peter's Snow" was a proto-science fiction novel released in 1933 and it drops quite a few bombshells that should shake up our understanding of psychedelic history, and suggests that there was a psychedelic underground in the West that existed for many centuries or millennia , and that this occult illuminati may have released LSD on the world intentionally, to counter the extreme violence and technology being unleashed on the world. we will hear an amazing paper called "Leo Perutz and the Mystery of St Peter's Snow" by Alan Piper, and an excerpt from the novel that contains some truly prophetic passages. Prepare to be mindblown! https://docslib.org/doc/1635740/leo-perutz-and-the-mystery-of-st-peters-snowhttps://www.amazon.com/Saint-Peters-Snow-Leo-Perutz-ebook/dp/B00K4JVUGK/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3T991P5AL5KSZ&keywords=saint+peter%27s+snow&qid=1665381730&qu=eyJxc2MiOiIwLjAwIiwicXNhIjoiMC4wMCIsInFzcCI6IjAuMDAifQ%3D%3D&sprefix=saint+peter%27s+snow%2Caps%2C88&sr=8-1
Join me as I break down Chapters 79, 80, 81 and 82 of The Da Vinci Code, in which Teabing returns to the motherland, Langdon learns about bribery, and we meet everyone's favourite character Simon Edwards from the Biggen Hill Airport... 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Dan Brown's historically inaccurate The Da Vinci Code, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, 365 Days, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, and The Maze Runner.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at email@example.com. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
You may not believe in the devil, but you SHOULD, especially as you listen to our pod on end times movies. Up for discussion: Planet of the Apes, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, The Stand, The Seventh Sign, Stigmata, Constantine, I Am Legend, The Da Vinci Code, Children of Men, and more.
Join me as I break down Chapters 74, 75, 76, 77 and 78 of The Da Vinci Code, in which Langdon makes Sophie visualise her grandad getting railed, Aringarosa bribes a pilot, and Teabing's nibblies are a huge letdown... 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Dan Brown's historically inaccurate The Da Vinci Code, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, 365 Days, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, and The Maze Runner.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
William Tunstall-Pedoe's claims to fame include, in his first startup, Evi – which he sold to Amazon - creating the AI technology that now powers Alexa in 100s of millions of devices globally, coding the AI software behind the anagrams in the Da Vinci Code, and calculating that April 11th 1954 was the most boring day in history! William's latest venture – Unlikely AI – who've recently raised a $20m seed round led by Amadeus & Octopus - is his most ambitious venture yet & could radically change the future of software & AI development We explored: why does the world need a contrarian approach to AI? thinking big - aiming to change the world creating magical products that delight customers codifying the company's culture mentoring & investing in dozens of startups For more insights into Unlikely AI head over to https://unlikely.ai/ & for advice on recruiting exceptional leaders for startups & scale-ups check out https://alpinasearch.com/
J F Penn is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of thrillers, dark fantasy, and crime. We are talking about Tomb Of Relics, her twelfth book in her best-selling Arkane series. The series has been likened to Dan Brown's thrillers and it's got all the popular themes: relics of power, international locations, and adventure with an edge of the supernatural. Hi there, I'm your host Jenny Wheeler, and today on Binge Reading J F – Joanna – talks about her attraction to dark mystery and being a successful author in the 21st century. Of course as usual we have a free book giveaway - this week is Out of Time Mysteries and Thriller Giveaway: https://claims.prolificworks.com/gg/2pNOBFed21srn5v1aNfU DOWNLOAD FREE MYsTERIES AND THRILLERS If you'd like enjoy the show and would like to thank us for all our work, support us by buying me a cup of coffee at buymeacoffee.com/jennywheelX BUY ME A COFFEE - AND THANK YOU! Links mentioned in this episode: Dan Brown and Da Vinci Code: https://danbrown.com/ Anne Rice: http://annerice.com/ Sandra Bullock movie like Romancing the Stone: The Lost City: https://screenrant.com/lost-city-romancing-stone-similar-different/ Mick Herron: https://www.mickherron.com/ Daniel Silva: Portrait of An Unknown Woman: https://danielsilvabooks.com/ John Connolly: Charlie Parker series: https://www.johnconnollybooks.com/ Mick Herron: https://www.mickherron.com/ Pilgimrage St Cuthbert's Way: https://www.stcuthbertsway.info/ Camino Way: https://caminoways.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/Camino-de-Santiago.jpg Where to find J F Penn: New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Thriller AuthorPodcaster. Speaker. Award-winning Entrepreneur. Get your FREE Successful Author Blueprint: www.TheCreativePenn.com Podcast: www.TheCreativePenn.com/podcasts/ Twitter: joanna@TheCreativePenn.comwww.twitter.com/thecreativepenn Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheCreativePenn Instagram: www.instagram.com/jfpennauthor Love Books and Travel? www.BooksAndTravel.page What follows is a "near as" transcript of our conversation, not word for word but pretty close to it, with links to the show notes in The Joys of Binge Reading.com for important mentions.But now, here's Joanna. Introducing thriller author JF Penn Jenny Wheeler: Hello there, Joanna, and welcome to the show. It's fabulous to have you with us Thriller author JF Penn J F Penn: Thanks so much, Jenny. I'm thrilled to be here. Jenny Wheeler: You are really well known for your work in the non-fiction area with your podcast, The Creative Penn, but today we are talking about the other 50% of your career, maybe even 60%, your fiction writing, which doesn't often get quite so much attention. You are an award nominated New York Times and USA Today best-selling author. You combine genres, multi genre books, which are thrillers, dark fantasy and crime – something that sometimes the trad publishers aren't quite so keen on because they don't know where to put them on the shelf, but you have just published your 12th book in your Arkane series, Tomb of Relics. When you started out, did you appreciate that you were tackling this as a multi-genre and that it might get a little bit complicated as you went along? J F Penn: I think when you start writing a story, you write the story you are interested in. My Arkane series was sort of shaped by the Dan Brown Da Vinci Code era, back in the day. It seems a long time now, but essentially I love the Da Vinci Code and I have a degree in Theology and I love thrillers. I was working in Australia at the time, miserable in my day job, and I would read these religious and historical Arkane-type thrillers back then, and that's what I decided to write. Action thriller with a supernatural edge The Arkane series is action, adventure, thriller, but has this supernatural edge and is based on religious history and religious myth,
Join me as I break down Chapters 69, 70, 71, 72 and 73 of The Da Vinci Code, in which Sophie realises she might be a fugitive, Collet and Fache are fighting, and Da Vinci's kooky writing trick stumps the experts...'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Dan Brown's historically inaccurate The Da Vinci Code, and E.L. James' dreadfully unerotic Fifty Shades Freed on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, 365 Days, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, Insurgent, and The Maze Runner.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down E.L. James' Fifty Shades Freed with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker, Insurgent and The Maze Runner recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at email@example.com. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Tonight we're chatting with PJ Hoover, author of the new book PROBLEM SOLVERS: 15 INNOVATIVE WOMEN ENGINEERS AND CODERS.P. J. (Tricia) Hoover wanted to be a Jedi, but when that didn't work out, she became an electrical engineer instead. After a fifteen-year bout designing computer chips for a living, P. J. started creating worlds of her own. She's the award-winning author of The Hidden Code, a Da Vinci Code-style young adult adventure with a kick-butt heroine, and Tut: The Story of My Immortal Life, featuring a fourteen-year-old King Tut who's stuck in middle school.When not writing, P. J. spends time practicing kung fu, fixing things around the house, and solving Rubik's cubes. For more information about P. J. (Tricia) Hoover, please visit her website www.pjhoover.com.Instagram and Twitter: @pj_hooverFacebook: http://www.facebook.com/AuthorPJHoover
Bienvenido mi gente! to Season 2 of Siempre Pa'lante! Always Forward. I'm your host, Giraldo Luis Alvaré. Gracias for listening. In this episode, our guest has dedicated his life to music for more than 50 years. He is a self-taught musician who has earned every accolade that has come his way. From El Barrio in Nueva York to entertaining millions of fans around the world, Please welcome, the King of Latin Soul, Joe Bataan. Gracias for listening. Don't forget to rate, review, follow, subscribe, like and share. Check out my Linktree for more info. Aguacate! https://linktr.ee/sp.alwaysforward SPECIAL GUEST Joe Bataan Musician, Band Leader, Singer & Songwriter Joe Bataan site | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Youtube Joe Bataan site - https://www.joebataanmusic.com/ FB - https://www.facebook.com/joe.bataan IG - https://www.instagram.com/therealjoebataan/?hl=en Twitter - https://twitter.com/JOE_BATAAN YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3hEeXdGmXCK19HNso5epoA/featured NOTABLE MENTIONS El Barrio, New York, Nueva York, Streetology, Afro-Filipino, Puerto Ricans, Portoros, Spofford, Bridges Detention Center, Spirit, Health, Knowledge, Three notches above the rest, The Godfather, Machiavelli Theory, Latin Soul, Cinderella Story, Peace, Joe Cuba, Shaft, Isaac Hayes, La Lupe, Tito Puente, Triad, C Major, D Minor, E Minor, Ralfi Pagan, Saint Cecilia's Church, Saint Cecilia, Patron Saint of Music, Our Father, Lord's Prayer, Shanghai, Australia, Japan, France, Germany, Mother's Day, Marshall & Wendell Piano, West Coast, La Raza, Ballads, Uptempo, Davinci Code, James Brown, Smokey Robinson, Frankie Lymon, George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Judy Garland, Frank Sinatra, Perry Como, Nat King Cole, Sammy Davis Jr., George Washington, Roosevelt, Pedro Albizu Campus, Cha-Cha-Cha, Mary Wells, Hector Rivera, Johnny Colon, Boogaloo, Ordinary Guy, Ricardo Ray, Chicago, R&B, Ghetto Records, Drug Story, Gypsy Women, Cotique Records, Morris Levy, Jerry Masucci, Boricua Theatre, Dick (Ricardo) Sugar, Johnny Pacheco, Red Garter, Marvin Gaye, Our Latin Thing, Fania, Sweet Soul, St. Latin's Day Massacre, Shea Stadium, Yankee Stadium, SalSoul, Rap-O-Clap-O, RCA Records, Larry Levan, Paradise Garage, El Avion, The Riot, Grace, Mercy, Peace --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/spalwaysforward/support
Join me as I break down Chapters 64, 65, 66, 67 and 68 of The Da Vinci Code, in which Langdon borrows a paperclip from a billionaire, Lieutenant Collet is foiled again, and Teabing jets around more than Taylor Swift... 'Breaking Down Bad Books' is a podcast analysing trashy bestsellers from a literary perspective. Currently covering Dan Brown's historically inaccurate The Da Vinci Code, and James Dashner's labyrinthine sci-fi The Maze Runner on Patreon. Previously covered Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, 365 Days, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Divergent, and Insurgent.Sign up to be a patron at www.patreon.com/breakingdownbadbooks for access to exclusive bonus episodes where I will be breaking down James Dashner's The Maze Runner with new episodes every Friday. You can also gain access to the previously published 365 Days, Fifty Shades Darker and Insurgent recaps.Read along with me and let me know your thoughts on Twitter @PodBreakingDown or Instagram @breakingdownbadbooks or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also leave a voicemail at www.speakpipe.com/breakingdownbadbooks.Hosted by Nathan Brown, who you can find on Twitter and Instagram @nathanbrown90. Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/breaking-down. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
The Delicious Recipe shares tea again Author Tom Reilly continues the DaVinci code, with added guest Lorilei from The Angel Rock— Uprn New Orleans
Is the pope trying to curtail a Vatican organization affiliated with Clarence and Ginni Thomas, right wing judges, and developing world dictators?We're talking about Opus Dei, the Catholic Information Network, Leonard Leo, Ginni and Clarence Thomas, and incidentally in the context of this story, the Order of the Knights of Malta. If you like our content please become a patron to get our exclusive premium episodes, as well as our public episodes ad-free. Ginni Thomas has led a life in adherence to various cults. She started with Lifespring, a self-help cult which was sued into bankruptcy in the late 1980s and early 1990s after a string of accidental deaths related to their activities. From there she worked with a series of "deprogramming" organizations which strayed into kidnapping-for-hire in their efforts to forcibly remove the relatives of wealthy families from other cults. Today, Ginni's cult is the assortment of far-right American political interests which use her husband's name and influence to try and coalesce into a singular political vision. One of those interests is a secretive organization of wealthy Catholic donors named Opus Dei, which was also featured in Dan Brown's novel The DaVinci Code. 1 Opus Dei was formed during the Spanish Civil War by a priest named Josemaría Escrivá. From its outset, it has been an advocate of far-right governments, from Franco's Spain to various military dictatorships in South America. They were rumored to be involved in the Argentine military dictatorship during the Falklands War, which indirectly caused the collapse of Banco Ambrosiano, after which that bank's chairman Roberto Calvi was found hanging from the Blackfriar Bridge in London with bricks in his pockets and $14,000 in cash in his jacket. The bricks signified his rumored membership in another secret organization: the Masonic lodge Propaganda Due. In America, Opus Dei is behind money which flows into far-right political causes, particularly those related to the appointment of federal judges. The organization's American functions are run by a man named Leonard Leo, who was Trump's primary judicial consultant. Leo was also a consultant to the George W. Bush administration on the selection of justices Samuel Alito and John Roberts. 2 The Order of the Knights of Malta are unfortunate victims in this story. The current pope stuck them with the most prominent far-right priest in America, Cardinal Raymond Burke, when he demoted that priest from the Apostolic Signatura, the Vatican's equivalent of a supreme court back in 2014. The pope fired Burke again and reinstated Albrecht von Boeselager, the former chancellor of the Order who Burke and its Grand Master had purged for distributing condoms and morning-after birth control pills in the Myanmar region. More recently, the pope has ordered all vatican organizations to deposit their funds into the Vatican Bank within the next 30 days, and demoted the chief clergy officer in Opus Dei from a bishop to a priest. The pope has also widely banned the Latin mass, another favorite cultural argument of Cardinal Burke. Perhaps the pope is curtailing Opus Dei specifically? 3 Episode #Dubimeter: 15 1. The Long Crusade of Clarence and Ginni Thomas. The New York Times Magazine. February 2022. ⇤2. A Conservative activist's behind-the-scenes campaign to remake the nation's courts. The Washington Post. May 2019. ⇤3. Christian Right Seeks Renewal in Deepening Catholic-Protestant Alliance. Political Research Associates. July 2013. ⇤
The Horses excitedly welcome special guest Katie Hughes to the stable and then gesture wanly at ANGELS & DEMONS, a film which may or may not be even more boring than the DA VINCI CODE depending on which of the hosts you ask. If nothing else it's admirable that a movie about discovering antimatter and then using it to blow up the pope can make you this tired.
Meet Melanie Taddeo. Her parents always encouraged her to be the best that she could be. That attitude shined through when, at the age of 21, she experienced a stroke that left her paralyzed on her left side and totally blind. Her drive helped her to regain the ability to walk. Also, she regained some of her eyesight. Melanie will tell you that she is a teacher and loves to impart knowledge. In this episode, you will get to hear how she crashed through barriers when school principals and others would not give her a job after discovering she was blind. As many of us have experienced, Melanie found that no matter her capabilities and experience, the only thing prospective employers considered was that she was blind. Melanie's story proves how incredibly unstoppable she was and is. I hope you will find this episode as inspirational and thought-provoking as did I. About the Guest: Melanie Taddeo is a passionate advocate for inclusion who at the age of 21 suffered a massive stroke that left her completely paralyzed on her left side and legally blind. After years of therapy, she was able to regain her independence and go on to become the first legally blind teacher to graduate in Ontario. She is a certified special education teacher with over 20 years of experience in program development, fundraising, community outreach, volunteer management, and public speaking. Melanie founded Connect 4 Life and Voices 4 Ability; V4A Radio based on her personal experience of the lack of programs that promote independence for people with disabilities. She has made it her goal to help empower others to achieve their dreams despite the challenges they face. Melanie has assisted hundreds of people through Connect 4 Life's programs such as the first broadcast training program for individuals with disabilities: “An Accessible voice in Broadcasting”, life skills training program, and public speaking. Melanie's passion is evident in everything she does to ensure that each client sees their abilities and not only their disabilities. Melanie published her first book in 2019. “My Unforeseen Journey Losing Sight Gaining vision. Melanie has been a Toastmaster for eight years achieving her, Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM), and was the recipient of the Member Making a Difference award (MMAD) in 2020, and now using her speaking to inspire others across the globe as a champion of inclusion, Melanie empowers entrepreneurs, professionals, and community leaders to embrace challenges and how to overcome unforeseen change with dignity, and ease. Most recently Melanie has created a company called gaining vision, to help promote inclusion across the world, ensuring that every person feels heard, seen, and valued just as they are. Her story is proof that despite adversity success is possible with hard work and perseverance. To learn more please visit www.connect4life.ca WEBSITE: www.melanietaddeo.ca http://gainingvision2020.com FACEBOOK PAGE https://www.facebook.com/gainingvision/ TWITTER @gainingvision INSTAGRAM @gaining_vision YOUTUBE Gaining vision with Melanie Taddeo Nxumalo About the Host: Michael Hingson is a New York Times best-selling author, international lecturer, and Chief Vision Officer for accessiBe. Michael, blind since birth, survived the 9/11 attacks with the help of his guide dog Roselle. This story is the subject of his best-selling book, Thunder Dog. Michael gives over 100 presentations around the world each year speaking to influential groups such as Exxon Mobile, AT&T, Federal Express, Scripps College, Rutgers University, Children's Hospital, and the American Red Cross just to name a few. He is an Ambassador for the National Braille Literacy Campaign for the National Federation of the Blind and also serves as Ambassador for the American Humane Association's 2012 Hero Dog Awards. https://michaelhingson.com https://www.facebook.com/michael.hingson.author.speaker/ https://twitter.com/mhingson https://www.youtube.com/user/mhingson https://www.linkedin.com/in/michaelhingson/ accessiBe Links https://accessibe.com/ https://www.youtube.com/c/accessiBe https://www.linkedin.com/company/accessibe/mycompany/ https://www.facebook.com/accessibe/ Thanks for listening! Thanks so much for listening to our podcast! If you enjoyed this episode and think that others could benefit from listening, please share it using the social media buttons on this page. Do you have some feedback or questions about this episode? Leave a comment in the section below! Subscribe to the podcast If you would like to get automatic updates of new podcast episodes, you can subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher. You can also subscribe in your favorite podcast app. Leave us an Apple Podcasts review Ratings and reviews from our listeners are extremely valuable to us and greatly appreciated. They help our podcast rank higher on Apple Podcasts, which exposes our show to more awesome listeners like you. If you have a minute, please leave an honest review on Apple Podcasts. Transcription Notes Michael Hingson 00:00 Access Cast and accessiBe Initiative presents Unstoppable Mindset. The podcast where inclusion, diversity and the unexpected meet. Hi, I'm Michael Hingson, Chief Vision Officer for accessiBe and the author of the number one New York Times bestselling book, Thunder dog, the story of a blind man, his guide dog and the triumph of trust. Thanks for joining me on my podcast as we explore our own blinding fears of inclusion unacceptance and our resistance to change. We will discover the idea that no matter the situation, or the people we encounter, our own fears, and prejudices often are our strongest barriers to moving forward. The unstoppable mindset podcast is sponsored by accessiBe, that's a c c e s s i capital B e. Visit www.accessibe.com to learn how you can make your website accessible for persons with disabilities. And to help make the internet fully inclusive by the year 2025. Glad you dropped by we're happy to meet you and to have you here with us. Michael Hingson 01:21 Well, hi, once again, and welcome to unstoppable mindset. I am excited to introduce you all to Melanie Taddeo . And Melanie's gonna tell her story. I don't want to give it all away. But Melanie has everything that we could ever expect to have in an unstoppable mindset podcast. She has a great story. She has unexpected life challenges that she has chosen to deal with. And she did deal with them. And she has all sorts of other things that I'm sure we're going to talk about. She's an advocate, dealing with persons with disabilities and all sorts of other stuff. And rather than saying all sorts of other stuff, and then living it to your imagination, Melanie, welcome to unstoppable mindset. Melanie Taddeo 02:04 Thank you so much for having me, Michael. Michael Hingson 02:07 So here it is a late afternoon for me and an early evening for you. You're in Toronto or LLC and Ontario, right? Correct. Yes. And we're out here in California. So we traverse the three major time zones of our two countries. And so you Have you had dinner? Not yet. I will. I will start cooking after this is over? Well, let's get started. So why don't you tell us a little bit about you kind of your, your early years and all that stuff. And we'll go from there. Melanie Taddeo 02:42 Wonderful. So I'm the eldest of four girls, my dad is Italian descent, and my mom is Canadian, and a little bit of Irish and English in her background. But I was raised in an amazing loving home, where everything was encouraged, reach for the stars, hard work ethic possibilities and be a great role model for my three younger sisters. And that sounds like a really comfortable life. But it can be challenging at times, of course, because you know, you want to be the perfect daughter, whatever perfect was, but in your is a child that's the impression was given work hard. Of course, you had choices be a doctor or lawyer. I didn't either. But that's okay. But everything they taught me was about equality. And everybody's equal everybody, although there may be differences in our friends, all of us are the same inside and really to focus on that and not seeing differences. And I appreciate that now. Now, this was the mindset they taught me yet in their generations. Decision. How Michael Hingson 03:46 old were you when this was was being taught to you? Melanie Taddeo 03:49 Oh, from age five, up so Michael Hingson 03:53 in school and so on, you are already thinking of people more as equal than probably a lot of kids did. Melanie Taddeo 04:01 Yes, definitely. And, you know, it's, I'm so thankful for that. Because, obviously, we live in a very multicultural area of Mississauga. And we, it was really great, because, you know, although there are different types, sizes, you know, different genders, all these different things, and of course, you know, different backgrounds. We just were all friends. And that was a great mentality. And I'm really happy my family instilled that in me at that age. Michael Hingson 04:28 Did other children have any kind of an issue with that? They tend to view people the same way. How did all that work? Melanie Taddeo 04:37 You know, it was interesting, I think, looking back reflecting back, perhaps there was some definite biases there. But as children, you just think, Oh, they're mean. And that was about it. And I don't want to be their friend because they're mean, but it was never about oh, you're this or that. But it was just that unconscious bias or the way that they were they were raised. But we all play together. We all had great opportunities to learn about one another. And I appreciated that. Even individuals with disabilities, you know, there was a special class back then you might exam not going to age myself. But back then there was different separate classes. But they were just kids, there was nothing different, which I really appreciate that. My family always said, you know, no matter what family you know, sticks together, we always work towards a common goal. Set your goals high. Again, remember that lawyer and Doctor kind of mentality. I reached for the stars, everything I did in my life was to be a teacher, because that was my dream. I wanted to be a teacher, I was that girl that settled her stuffed animals to the front of the room to teach them, you know, the ABCs. I loved it. So everything my volunteer work growing up, as I started to get older, 13 and up was all right around kids. And I wanted to teach that was my dream. Michael Hingson 05:57 So when you were when you were growing up? Did you have many friends who had any kind of disability? Do you remember? It was they were in different schools? Melanie Taddeo 06:10 It mostly Yes. But for me, it was just, you know, it wasn't even on my radar, to be honest, at that point. Actually, that's not true. There was a young man down the street that lived there, and he had Down syndrome. But he just used to ride his bike around and he was just the boy like, we called him by his name, Jay. And that was that. But again, everybody was the same. So it didn't dawn on me. But again, reflecting back, I now recognize that, but it was never said to me, oh, this person has Down syndrome. It was just he was Jay. And it was a good thing, because I feel it taught me so much about seeing past the disability. So that was thrilling years, great. Life was really great. Michael Hingson 06:57 So you went through? Well, I guess would be high school and all that. And you still wanted to teach Melanie Taddeo 07:04 everything. Actually in high school I used to I got into art. And I found my passion. I had a mentor in high school teach me about art. And I was able to do all these beautiful paintings and drawings. And my creative side came out and I was on cloud nine. i My mentor at the time said I can retire if somebody one of my students goes to university for art, like that's me. And again, I did everything working in art galleries, that sort of thing, just to get experience. And I put together an amazing portfolio and was accepted to go to university for Arch. Again. It's a big joke on me in the future. But this point I was living the dream, teaching art and summer camp. And just loving my spare spare time was painting and drying and really absorbing all the arts. Michael Hingson 07:53 So you went off to university what university I went to York Melanie Taddeo 07:57 University, which is in Toronto. At first I committed and then I lived in residence. And it was a great opportunity. It was very well known for their art program, top notch professors and had great facility and I was just experimenting with all the different techniques and styles and just really trying to get my feet footing because I encounter a world would be an art teacher that was my dream. Best of both worlds. Michael Hingson 08:25 So I get the impression that something happened along the way to change all that. Melanie Taddeo 08:31 Yes, yes, it did. My fourth year university, I started to develop migraines. And everybody kept saying lots of stress from University. I'm thinking I'm studying art, what kind of stress do you have during kid paid by campus, really. And they kept giving me medication to numb the pain. But till one morning, I couldn't lift my head off the pillow. Finally I said there's something wrong and I went and they did MRIs they did CAT scans. They said no, nothing showing. And so one day, they saw something behind my eyes. And they said well, there's something there. And they diagnosed me with pseudotumor servi. And really just means there's a fake tumor. Yeah. But it was a misdiagnosis. It was a sign of a stroke. So they sent me for the eye operation to relieve the pressure from the optic nerve. And they kept me in the hospital and I was lethargic that was throwing up and they said all this anesthetic, it's this it's that it's the other they sent me home. And I was at my parents house recovering. And they had to go the family doctor and I'd still been really really sick and not well. And I couldn't see out of my eyes when I woke up. So they had the bandage. And they say Oh, it's okay. It's part of the surgery, it's going to come back. And so I had to call the family doctor for a checkup for them to test the eyes. And again, remember remembering that they said oh, you're going to be able to see Don't worry me He's fine. It's just they're swollen, they're going to come down. And I remember having to get showered. And I was like, come on, Melanie get given the shower, and I said, okay, okay, okay, just a minute I sit on, see the toilet and just rest. Basically, my mom had to shower me, and I'm a very modest woman, I would never let that happen. But I was just really out of it. Got to the top of the staircase, and I was like, Okay, go ahead and go down. I'm like, Oh, the house was spinning. And I said, I think I'm gonna go down on my bomb. So I said, at the top of stairs, and I started to go down. And mom's like, move your left side. Melanie said, I am. What do you think I'm stupid. And I would never talked to my mother. But I had had a stroke at the top of the staircase. So this struggle of be completely paralyzed on the left side and legally blind. So I was in a coma for two weeks. And I tell you, everybody, you can hear everything going on when you're in a coma. So please talk to us. I heard everything I heard. I had the last rites. I heard the doctors told my parents, I wasn't going to live to plan my funeral. I heard them basically say, if I survived, I would be a vegetable. Of course, I also heard everybody's deepest, dark, darkest confessions. So again, be careful what you share. My little sister came to me said, I'm so sorry, I stole your case of peach gum, because I kept it in my bedroom, you know, extra case, throw it in your bag every day. And when I woke up, I had remembered everything. And so of course, I would question them. But during the coma, my dad put a Walkman. And again, I'm dating myself, but with music on my ears. And I remember the songs from that time. And again, all of the DJs everything was right there in my mind, because I could hear everything. And I knew it was going, I just wasn't awake. Michael Hingson 11:48 So you actually were unconscious. So it wasn't just that you were paralyzed and could move. You're actually unconscious. But as you said, you could hear everything. Yeah, Melanie Taddeo 12:00 that you couldn't communicate. And, again, my brain wasn't there. Apparently, supposedly, I was. You know, they kept saying she's not gonna wake up, she said, and that's a scary thing for a family to go through. But imagine hearing all this and wanting to say, Hello, I'm alive. I'm still here. So it was a very exciting time to reflect on but at that time it was. And so when I woke up, I couldn't see anything. And of course, I was intubated. So I couldn't communicate either. And they kept saying, use this for that and use because I could hear, so use a thumbs up for Yes, down for no. And they wanted me to use this bliss board of letters to point out and I couldn't see them and explain to my can't see anything, and my eyes were no longer bandaged. And this was it. So when I was finally out of the coma, or type still, during the coma, they did life saving procedure, where they inserted a catheter into the groin and inserted 1 million units of blood into my brain. And I was the second out of five in North America to survive. And that changed a lot because it relieved the blood clots, but it also added extra pressure to behind the eyes. So the optic nerves were permanently damaged, destroyed during this whole procedure. So yeah, welcome blind, Nigel to move. It was a very scary time, a very angry time. Michael Hingson 13:25 So you were intubated, that must have been pretty uncomfortable, especially once you woke up? Melanie Taddeo 13:30 Definitely I you know, especially because you have to learn to swallow again, not only the stroke, but having this to die for so long. It was it was just a very new process for me having to digest everything that had happened, as well as recover physically. Michael Hingson 13:46 How long were you intubated once you woke up? Melanie Taddeo 13:50 So I was in a coma for two weeks. And I'd say that was going to be another two weeks. Michael Hingson 13:55 Wow. Yeah. My wife went through a situation in 2014, where she had doubled ammonia and acute respiratory distress syndrome, and was put in an induced coma. So she was intubated. But after two weeks, they said they they needed to remove the two but they did a tracheostomy so that she could, she could continue to breathe, but they kept you intubated for a month. Melanie Taddeo 14:21 Mm hmm. Yes. And again, I am sure again, depending on the timing, how that was because again, I had long term, like they've cracked on my teeth, all that fun stuff. So it was you know, so lots of other things. And then of course, the raspy throat for quite a while. Yeah. But yeah, Michael Hingson 14:38 yeah, it was. So you were totally blind. Melanie Taddeo 14:43 Totally nothing at that point. And it was, you know, it was it was it was scary, because I couldn't see I could just hear people come in the room. I couldn't tell who's there. Of course, I got very used to people's voices. And that was a good thing because that's how I tend to, you know, really depend on my sense of hearing. But I also want to have us on one hand, so having to learn to do everything, feed myself, things like that just laying in a hospital bed alone. But being told that I was never going to see again that I was never going to get out of the bed, all those negative thoughts, and I'm a very positive person, I always had been with that positive upbringing. And I kept saying, no, no, I'm going to I'm going to do this. And they, they said, Oh, Melania, you know, stroke really affects you. You're the mindset of how you perceive things. And it's true, I understand that. So I always say I had stroke brain, it's not a medical term. It's a melody term, that I thought I could do everything I kept telling them. This was happening in July, I'm going to university back to university in September, I'm going back to move out on my own pictures to paint you exactly. In my mind that I just wanted to get back to normal, whatever normal was. Michael Hingson 15:57 So what happened? Well, Melanie Taddeo 15:59 I am a fighter. I'm a survivor, my parents will tell you I'm stubborn, but I'd like to say determine it sounds much nicer. And after a good kick in the butt from a chaplain of the hospital. I decided that I wanted to thrive instead of just survive, I stopped feeling sorry for myself. And, you know, there's a lot of time to think in the hospital. And you know, I had amazing family support, whatever they were petrified. Because of course, going through the I had regressed because I was scared to a little childcare my parents, mommy and daddy again. And I've just was it was just part of the stroke and part of the fear. But after the chaplain really brought it back home, he's like, if you want to go back to school, you can you know, you just need to really get your act together and work hard. And I went to a rehab hospital where I learned to walk walk again, I don't have use of my left arm still. But that's because I'm right handed and I kind of forgot it was there for a while. But I started walking again after you know, driving my wheelchair and to the wall several time, they said they had to repeat the entire hospital, the rehab center after I left because I kept couldn't see where I was going. So I kept ramming into walls and things like that. But I just kept a positive attitude got my independence back as far as I could physically walking first, of course, you know, with a quad cane, a single pain, and then without a cane. But then I had to come to terms with the fact that I was blind. I went through the denial. They had cniv with just cane National Institute for the Blind, come and see me with a guide dog and a talking watch. Like what are you here for? I don't need you. Well, Melanie, you're black. No not. And after going through that denial, I went to see an IV and learned how to navigate use my white cane, get around and cook independently and get my independence back. And then, of course being stubborn, as you know, as my family would say or determined. I went to teachers college I applied and because my grades were great. My volunteer experience was right up that I knew they had to give me that interview. And the interview went like this much. How are you going to do this with your disability? And how are you going to do that with your disability? Of course, in my mind, I don't have a disability, right. I'm like, fine. I said, I thought this interview was about my abilities and not my disability. Oh, well, they let me in. And my first day of teachers college, my professors are gone by Christmas. I said, Watch me. I had no idea what I was doing. I never went to school without eyesight. And I had to learn to put books on tape about having notetakers asking for accommodations. I knew nothing about this. But I quickly learned and Teachers College was only a year. It was intense. And even with my practicum I had to advocate for myself. So I learned a lot really, really quickly. Because I was determined to achieve this dream. I wasn't gonna let anything hold me back at this point, because that was my lifelong dream. I had to learn how to do things differently, though, because of course, I couldn't do it the same way. Well, you could do them. Absolutely. 100% I got very creative. I was teaching a grade seven, eight split art. And I had these goggles created for the students to see what I saw. So they could understand just a little bit of what I was seeing. And it was the best teachable moment I've ever had. Those students could empathize. They got a really great ideas of what they couldn't do what they couldn't do ask a lot of questions, which opens the dialogue for kids because they you know, they're there. They want to ask questions are curious, but they also are afraid of offending. And I was able to get them to try using doing art without their eyesight. Yes, I haven't blindfold themselves put some music on Okay, painters, and it was a really great experience at the beginning. And as well working with little kids and teaching them about abilities versus the disability, because of course at that time when I was teaching and Teachers College, there was the differences and there was really hard differences with people with this abilities into schools. So they're being made fun of and stuff like that. So I wanted to close that down fast. So it was a great experience. But the one thing I did face that was challenging for me is my professors thought that I should only teach special education. And I fought that tooth and nails. I ended up going into special education because I love it. But I was angry at them for putting me in that box. Michael Hingson 20:25 So, you, when you were teaching art in Teachers College, what kind of art? Was it painting or sculpting Melanie Taddeo 20:36 or helping and drying, believe it or not, and it was really getting them to teach the basics. And I had to teach myself, okay, how am I going to teach this concept now that I can't see, because after I, when I was in the rehab hospital, they had me trying to paint and draw. And first of all, the drawings was totally totally disproportion. So I thought, you know, what, it's all about interpretation and perception. So why not call it abstract. But I was still able still having the skill sets to talk it through. So I would help them with a verbal practice, okay, so we're going to, you know, take the charcoal and do this and walk them through it. And I said, Why don't you try and show me how you would draw this from your perspective. And then I would do a demonstration. And they'd be like, Oh, mister, doesn't look like that bowl of fruit? No, it doesn't, you're right, what does it look like, but this is my interpretation. So it was a really great eye opening experience for them. But I also really started to sway towards clay, and sculpture, and really get those tactile feelings. So for me, that's what shifted for me in my art, but I still had to teach the the elements of art. So being creative thinking outside the box, and getting the students to really listen, and be creative as well. Michael Hingson 21:58 So when you were teaching, drawing, and charcoals, and so on, were you doing that, in part, because you still were going through some sort of a denial or? Melanie Taddeo 22:10 Oh, okay. And wasn't it? Michael Hingson 22:14 Right? Because that's, that's what you teach in the in art, right? Melanie Taddeo 22:17 And that's the norm, right? Because I was normal, though, it took me a long time to really understand when I got to that acceptance stage, I was like, you know, I don't want to join it anymore. And that was okay, for me at that time, since then I've gone back to it, but in a very different way. So, but at that moment, it was working through the process of acceptance. Michael Hingson 22:41 So you were you were totally blind, that that did change at some point. It did. Melanie Taddeo 22:46 So I it's amazing. The brain is a amazing muscle, I'll call it. And so because my eyes actually are fine, this optic nerve that is destroyed, in my optic nerve wasn't passing the messages to the brain and what I was seeing, so technically, my brain taught itself how to see. Not well, but it's still going see some shapes. And I see some details. I can read large print, things like that. So I do have some usable sight. However, I also learned very quickly not to depend on that site, because you never know. So, Michael Hingson 23:21 so how long after? Well, you were in Teacher's College? How long after that? Did you regain some use of eyesight? Melanie Taddeo 23:29 It was actually a number of years after Teachers College that actually, yeah, okay. Michael Hingson 23:34 Did you learn braille? I did. So you use Braille. Still? Melanie Taddeo 23:39 I do not. i It's funny because I had when I was doing my additional qualifications. To teach individuals with a blind or partially sighted they, they you have to learn how to read Braille. So I mastered grade one like that grade to the contractions a little tricky for me, I'll be honest, but it was more visual, I was doing it because my fingertips are not so good with sensation. And, you know, of course, I can still teach it, but I don't use it myself and then still depend on that large print or a Sharpie marker. But I'm also learning but other technologies now to count on that instead of the print. Michael Hingson 24:21 You think your fingertips and their ability to sense or read dots were affected at all by the stroke? Melanie Taddeo 24:28 i Yes, absolutely. Even though it's my right side, I definitely feel it was that I noticed even though the stroke affected my left side, other sensations on my right side were diminished. So I think that was definitely part of it. Michael Hingson 24:40 So that may have been an issue that if you didn't have a loss of sensation that may have helped with Braille. Melanie Taddeo 24:47 Oh 100% And I think I would have definitely continued with it if it had been able to read it with my fingers because it is such an easy way to communicate and help with interviews like this. If you have no So whenever it would be great. Michael Hingson 25:03 Yeah. Well, and it's important to be able to do that. And you're absolutely right. The The reality is Braille is the main reading and writing mode that blind people and a lot of low vision people use as well, because in general, it's more efficient than looking at letters unless you have enough eyesight to read to be able to do that comfortably. Yes. And so the problem is that a lot of people, on the other hand, never get to learn braille as children, because they're forced to try to use their eyes. I've heard just countless people say, if I'd only really had the opportunity, and really did learn braille as a child, I'd be a much better reader today. Melanie Taddeo 25:47 I've heard that a lot as well. And then also, a lot of parents don't want their children to depend on Braille, which is mind boggling. Michael Hingson 25:55 They don't want their children to be blind, and they won't deal with that. That's true, too. Which is, which is part of the problem. But Braille is still the, the means by which we read and write. But you, you certainly have dealt with it well, and you've dealt with it in some some very practical ways, since you really don't have the sensation to do Braille really well. And that's perfectly understandable. So you went off and you went to be a teacher, you went to Teachers College, and then what did you do? Melanie Taddeo 26:25 I graduated as a first legally blind teacher to graduate in Ontario, which is a really big deal. Except nobody would hire me. And, you know, I've really struggled with that I didn't comprehend why. Because again, to me, there was no difference. It was just doing something differently. And creatively. I had a lot of great references, of course, because I was doing practice teaching at my old high school as teaching art. And of course, I have references. But once I put my application out to the boards, I get calls from the principal's and they'd be like, Oh, you're exactly looking for, you know, grade seven, eight split for RT, are you willing, and I Ghen, this is something I learned, but not you do not disclose your disability over the phone before getting to the interview, and I asked, Are you aware that I'm visually impaired? And they said, Oh, no. And of course, I said, What was that a problem? Well, not with me, of course, but will be with parents. And again, it wasn't a huge understanding advocacy at that point. But to me who better to tshirt, children with a disability than somebody that little one, just 24/7? So I said, Okay, thanks so much. So I didn't get hired. And I started to feel like what a waste, oh, my gosh, I'm never gonna get a job. You know, the whole pour was me pity parade thing. Stopped. And I thought, you know, what, I'm a great teacher, I was still volunteer teaching, and I was loving it. And I was coming up with really unique ways to teach and get around this, you know, safety thing. So I had all the answers down pat, and how to do things safely for everybody, and where I would be successful, and what different things I could do to bring to the table to add that little bit extra. And I started to talk to people, a lot of people with various disabilities. And they kept saying, you know, we want to learn how to be independent. Melanie, how did you do this? And I said, Well, it's easy. You just have to, you know, really put your mind to it set some goals. And so I thought, wouldn't it be amazing to have a charity, or a program known as a first it was a program to help individuals with different disabilities access, education and training, just as they are, despite their disabilities. And so I had run a learning center for adults with disabilities, just teach them life skills, help them learn to advocate for stuff, all the stuff that I had done to get my independence back. And that went on for three years. And that was great. But I learned a hard lesson. Like I'll use my own money for that. Not a good idea. So it didn't last long. And I then I have met a lawyer, and they're like, why did you start a charity to do the same type of programming, and that way you can seek funding and donations. Okay, so I did that. And in the meantime, I was trying to think outside the box other than life skills, what other skills should I be teaching when the programs you're talking to different people? And advocacy was a big piece. And then also, I needed something to share information because I can't read brochures, and I was like, No, you have to have a great brochure on it, but I can't read it. So I created voices for ability radio, which is the first 24/7 Internet radio station for about and by people with disabilities as a platform for us to have a voice and that was in Canada so I wouldn't be clear in Canada because there's many all over the globe but and so voices for ability radio was our A platform for people to share their stories, as well as those resources that I and my family found so hard to find after becoming someone with a disability, because nobody shared information. So this was an exciting journey that started 2014. And we still are up and running. And it's exciting. We now since doing voices learned that many people with disabilities love media. So what created a radio broadcast training program? And how to podcast so I teach that every day, it's a great thing. So I'm teaching just in a very different way. Michael Hingson 30:34 Well, and there's nothing wrong with that. No, not at all. I've always liked to teach. And when I was getting my master's degree in physics, I also got a secondary teaching credential. And in a sense, the actual certifications in both cases, I have not used, I didn't really end up with major jobs in physics, although I did, and still do work with companies in terms of scientific technologies, bleeding edge technologies, and so on. And teaching, by definition, because that is something that all of us have to do, as you're pointing out. The reality is we're the best teachers for teaching about disabilities or persons with disabilities. Absolutely. And, and so it's important to do that. The other side of that is that we also, if we do it, well learn to sell we all become great salespeople, because we have to do that in order to break through the misconceptions and perceptions that people have about us. Absolutely. So we we have to do that and make that work. So your the radio and the internet program is still up and running. Melanie Taddeo 31:56 It is yes, we act now virtual because of course with pandemic, a lot of our clients are high risk. So we had them sound during the pandemic and we were able to reach more people throughout Ontario. So for us that makes sense. So with a 20 week program, we teach radio broadcasting just the basics introductory, they created their own podcast and a demo reel and a resume and then we connect them we partner with a lot of broadcasters they come in and they share their expertise and teach them and connect them with internships after they graduate and help them get their start that's the starting point. Michael Hingson 32:31 You teach them how to edit and and process what do you use for that Reaper? Okay. There is there and all the appropriate plugins and and scripts that go with it. Yes, Reaper is a wonderful thing. Melanie Taddeo 32:48 Yes, it is incredible. And you know, it's funny because it took us from trial and error. We tried to das it. We tried all those other ones. It's just like, I can't do this. They're not gonna be able to do it. So yes. Michael Hingson 33:01 Well, I go back, talk about not wanting to give away your age, but hey, I'm not shy. I'm Nora, my modest. I worked in radio at a campus radio station in the late 60s and early 70s. Actually up through May or June of 1976. And I can tell you that there is nothing like when you need to edit a reel of tape, cutting, splicing, putting splicing tape in and doing it in such a way that you really can bridge the sound very effectively. It is nothing like Reaper today. Melanie Taddeo 33:35 Yes, it's amazing how far it's come the technology and it again, I can't even imagine how you did that. That's incredible. Michael Hingson 33:44 Yeah, my wasn't the best splicer in the world. But I but I can use Reaper really well. So I'm very happy with with all the different things that one can do with Reaper, it is a great program. Yes. And it is accessible. And the reality is that it is possible to do editing and so on. And Reaper is something that not only blind but sighted people use, but they have the people who are involved with it have been very diligent about doing everything possible to add in scripts and do other things so that all the features of Reaper are available and accessible. Melanie Taddeo 34:16 Yes, and it's so great because when we teach our students with who are blind, we do the shortcuts, but we don't do it just for them. We do it for everybody. It's faster guys. And they're like, Yeah, I did as well. This is great. I love that. And it's interesting because it's amazing because everyone's on the same level. And we do do some extra work for those individuals with screen readers, you know, because we've got to make sure that Jaws key commands aren't the same and all those fun things so but it's great. Michael Hingson 34:46 There are some great Reaper listservs and most of the time is spent talking about doing things to create an edit music and I don't use it for that. I'm so I'm only doing simple stuff by hand. relative terms and that is for podcast. But it is amazing the things that I see people doing and, and all the things that we're learning and all the different things that are available. It's just pretty incredible. Melanie Taddeo 35:10 It is it is. But I really appreciate the fact that they continue to update the accessibility with Asara and as somebody else. And there's even a group, I don't know if they're in Canada, or they're on national, where they're located. But Reapers without papers. And they're a group of young people that have all this expertise of a river. It's amazing. And they're a great resource. Michael Hingson 35:32 And that's where all the music stuff comes from. Most Well, I think the main proponents of it are in England or, or in the British Isles somewhere. But it is all over. And there is a huge subscription list. For the for the Reapers with the help papers. It's pretty cute. Melanie Taddeo 35:52 Yeah, no, I think it's awesome. It's a great resource for our guys as well. So it's, it's wonderful. It's a great experience, and I get to do what I love and watch individuals grow. And that's a dream come true. Michael Hingson 36:05 So you're, you're teaching them, but do you still have a radio program or any kind of thing that you're publishing? Melanie Taddeo 36:12 I have my own podcast, take another look podcast, with my co host, kereta Felix, and we talk about uncomfortable and difficult conversations. So that's what I'm doing, you know, because you have to lead by example, of course. And if you don't have a podcast, you're teaching podcasts like, how does that work? But I also, I did have a show on voices for ability for a long time, but just don't have the time to do everything. So I said, just take my content from the podcast and put on station so we're gonna get to that. Michael Hingson 36:41 Well, there you go. See? And and the podcast is working. Well, how long have you been doing it? Melanie Taddeo 36:45 Since January? Michael Hingson 36:47 Oh, you're just you're? Melanie Taddeo 36:49 Yes, we're newbies. It's interesting, because we wanted to start something new and different. And working together is a lot of fun. And of course, we have we just recorded our 25th episode. So it's exciting. Michael Hingson 37:03 You're doing once a week. Melanie Taddeo 37:05 We Yeah, they come on every Saturday, we meet together, we record two episodes, and then just launch them every Saturday. Yes, yeah. Michael Hingson 37:13 Well, we just are ready to put up show 37 of unstoppable mindset, it goes up on Wednesday. And same thing, we're doing one a week, and we started in September. And we're we're pleased with the results. We've gotten a lot of people who listen, and I hope that the people who are listening to this will definitely reach out as you get the opportunity to and let us know what you think of this. But we're having a lot of fun doing the podcasts. And hopefully we'll be able to teach other people the value of doing their own. It's all about telling stories, isn't Melanie Taddeo 37:45 it? It is really isn't it, but a platform to be able to share your story to inspire others to educate others, there's so many opportunities, and really just have a conversation with the world about things that others don't know about. It's a great opportunity. And I've learned a lot from your podcasts, Michael, hearing all the different guests and different perspectives, I think it's a great opportunity for everybody. 38:07 So is Connect for life still in operation? Melanie Taddeo 38:10 It is it is that's where I teach. So I teach students connect for life, the charity that I started. And it's great because not only are we doing the broadcasting class and the life skills class, where we have started up intro to public speaking course. And again, for individuals with, with, you know, some difficulties with being able to see, confidence sometimes could be but any disability can generalize. But so we have an introduction to public speaking course where we just teach the basics and get them comfortable and get them confident to be able to share their story because that's what advocacy is all about and being able to ask for things in an effective way when they need it. And then we also have our Connect for wellness program, which helps individuals cope with their mental health what's happening with being isolated, lonely, having a disability, and again talking about that so that they can get through anything they're struggling with. Michael Hingson 39:04 So, in teaching public speaking, what's the most basic thing that you try to get people who are interested in becoming like public speakers? What's the most basic thing you work to get them to understand or what what kind of things do you have to overcome? Melanie Taddeo 39:20 So first thing first is having a universal message that your audience can relate to your stories can be personal, but you always have to have that universal message. And please don't talk like this because it's really boring. vocal variety is everything. And for me, it's just about communicating and sharing stories, having that engaging connection with your audience. Because if you lose your audience right off the bat, they're not going to listen. So it's that universal message, tie it through so that what you're saying makes sense to people. And so that would be the main thing but then of course, you know, of course, in our state Your words don't mumble as well as to to clearly outline your speech or Keynote, whatever it is, so that you know where you're going with this and that people can follow easily. Those will be the main things. Michael Hingson 40:10 read or speak from the heart and don't read a speech. Melanie Taddeo 40:14 Exactly. And don't read, don't read, please don't read. Because that's terrible. It sounds awful, but connect with your audience have a conversation. And that's exactly speak from your heart. A lot of people speak best when it's off the cuff. Michael Hingson 40:28 When I first started, when I first started speaking, after September 11, a couple people said you should write your speeches. Okay, I wrote a speech. And I read, it sounded horrible. And I read it to the audience. And it sounded horrible. They were very kind. But I listened to it because I like to record speeches, and then go back and listen to them again. And find that I probably learn more from listening to speeches, as well as going back and listening to these podcasts, which we do as we're running them through Reaper, to take out any little funny noises and throw clearings and all that. But I find that I learned a lot by doing that. And what I discovered was don't read a speech. Yes. And it's important. And the other reason, which most speakers get locked into a mindset don't do is the value of not reading your speech. If you are at a venue where you're speaking and you get there early, you never know what you might learn that you want to put into the speech to add value to it. You Melanie Taddeo 41:38 got it 100%. And I think it's so important, because I think, you know, what I learned is, if you read a speech, you sound like you're reading a speech, you're not connected with the audience, and nobody knows what you've written. So here's the thing, if you know what you're talking about, just talk, have that conversation and connect with somebody. And like you said, you can add live and add things that just happen. So can be more relatable to your audience, because they were there for that. Sorry, perhaps they can relate to the topic because they're right there in the moment. But for people that are so focused on what they've written, they won't even go off script, and they lose. Michael Hingson 42:20 And how boring is that? Or what? Melanie Taddeo 42:22 Yes. And they only say there's three types of speeches, the one you wrote, when you delivered and the one you wish you'd delivered, right? Yeah. Wouldn't it be great just to deliver and be happy? Michael Hingson 42:34 Yeah, I work really hard to get to the deliver the one I wish to deliver. And so that's why I love to listen to speeches, and so on, and why it's so important to do. But I don't know whether I've ever mentioned that on unstoppable mindset. I was asked once by a speaker's bureau to go deliver a speech to an organization called the National Property Managers Association. And I said to the speaker's bureau person, well, what is that organization, already having my own preconceived notion of what it was, but they said, what I thought, oh, it's an organization while the people who are in charge of taking people's properties and renting them out and so on. So, you know, do you have stories that you can tell him all that and I said, Sure, because, in fact, at the time that we were doing that we had rented, well, we had given a property manager a home, we were moving from one place to another, we're moving Southern California after Karen's illness. And so we had a property manager take over that. And then there were stories about that, not all positive. But I flew in to deliver the speech and got there very late the night before I was supposed to deliver a breakfast speech. So I got to the event on 1230. And I went to bed, got up in the morning, went down after taking my guide dog Africa outside because she has to go do her stuff. So we went in to do the speech, and it was breakfast. So I sat down and I was listening to some people near me speak. And something sounded off. So I said to one of the people, tell me more about the National Property Managers Association. Exactly what do you guys do and so on. The National Property Managers Association is an organization that is in charge of and responsible for anything physical owned by the United States government. Totally different? Yes. And I'm about 10 minutes away from speaking, whole speech has to be revised. And I'm not saying that to brag, but rather to express the importance of really learning to be flexible. Now as it turns out, I had negotiated government contracts and schedules and so on and had lots of great stories. In fact, it was a much more fun speech to give and did deliver a speech that everyone appreciated. He got to also talk about things regarding disabilities and other things like that. But the bottom line is that if you are locked into something so much that you don't pay attention to what's going on around you, you're going to get in trouble. Or you don't care, in which case, they're not going to want to have you come back. Melanie Taddeo 45:23 Exactly. You would have got up until richer, original speech and they would have been sad about exactly. And probably wouldn't have said much, but probably wouldn't have invited you back. Yeah, no, exactly. Michael Hingson 45:39 Right. Exactly. Right. They would, they would not have but, but it was fun. It was a great event, and enjoyed it and spoke to other divisions of it. So it was a it was a fun time. But I very much enjoy the fact that I believe it's important for me to learn more when I go to a speaking event than the people I'm speaking to, because that will help me in future speeches. And it's all about speaking from the heart. And it's all about learning to speak. And I can't even say extemporaneously because I know what I want to say. It's not like it's totally random. But I want to be able to be flexible. And that's what any good speakers should be able to do. Melanie Taddeo 46:20 You know, it's when I ever talked to my students, oh, how do you memorize all your speeches, I said, Well, I personally, I write out my thoughts on the computer. And then I listened to it over and over again, I never ever go by what I write, but it's just the concepts I want to cover. And I may make point form notes, as I'm practicing, but it's just a matter of listening to it. And then I just put them away, and I just start talking. And that's the best speech when you start talking. Because I already know what I want to say, because I've written it down. And that's part of how I learned. It's just like, putting it down on something. And it could and then I'll just walk around the house talking to myself, my husband's like a UK. Oh, yeah, I'm just talking to yourself. And it works out just fine. And sometimes again, you get up and, you know, wait a minute, no, I'm gonna say this instead. And it just happens. And in the moment, so it is a great way. But it's important I find to teach the art of public speaking to anyone with a disability because they've got to be confident in what they're saying, because they want to win what what we what I like to do is to ensure that people feel heard and valued. And being able to articulate what you need and how you feel things like that is very, very important skill that not everybody does. Because that Oh, well. I'm just somebody with just blowing the whistle here. Yes, they do. They need to hear your voice. So for me, that's why we do that course. Michael Hingson 47:50 Yeah. And by doing that, you're helping them to gain confidence. And the reality is people always say, well, aren't you afraid to get up in front of an audience and speak because why couldn't do that, I'd be afraid. And so I love to tell the story that after September 11, the first time I was invited to speak anywhere, was to a church service in central New Jersey, where they wanted to honor the people who were lost. So it was like two weeks after September 11. So that would have been? Well, it was the 26th. That was Wednesday, two weeks in a day later. And I said, Sure, I'd be glad to come they said, Well, you don't have a lot of time, only about six minutes or so. But we'd like you to come and tell your story. And I said, Sure, I'd be happy to do that. Then I asked the big question, how many people will be there, not 6000. So I learned pretty quickly, you don't be afraid of how large or what kind of what audience you have. You can you can deal with them. And it doesn't matter about the audience. If you connect, which is what you said earlier, it's all about connecting with the audience. Melanie Taddeo 49:01 And again, knowing that they're there in an emotional state like you had just gone through and knowing that you can connect on that level, you can connect by celebrating the first responders or whoever you were the fire you're celebrating, and just really truly you're all there for a similar reason. And any conference any speaking engagement usually the people are there for the same reason, usually, but usually, you never know there's always that person that it may hit that may not know what you're talking about, or may really get something more out of it than you even expected. Michael Hingson 49:37 And one of the things I love to do after speaking is take time to talk to people to to meet with them and so on course it's a blessing to have a book. That was the number one New York Times bestseller and, and also have a guide dog because what we do afterward usually is is there is a book table set up and I'll tie now Alamo black lap current eighth guy dog and tie him to the table. Alamo knows how to draw in people when it's all about petting him, of course. But but people come in, and then we get to chat. So whatever tool you have to use, but the bottom line is that people mostly really do want to interact. And you know, I've spoken at events, if you talk about politics and so on, that are completely opposite in view from the political views that I have to that I happen to have. But who cares is for me, it's not about politics, it's about about speaking and delivering messages. And one of the things that I generally do tell people is, like, I am perfectly capable, and probably will pick on Washington DC during this speech, but just let the record show. I'm an equal opportunity abuser. I go from the standpoint of Mark Twain who said Congress's Grandal benevolent asylum for the helpless, so they're all in the same boat. Yeah. So I said, you know, we could we could pick on all of them. And it's a whole lot of fun, Melanie Taddeo 51:06 though, and again, adding humor, and it just breaks the ice. It says people at ease, and they know that you're just here to share a story. And then you're not going to get those people. Well, I'm on the side, I'm on that side. Right. Yeah. That that commonality. I love it. Michael Hingson 51:20 And you know, a lot of people say, don't tell a joke at the beginning of a speech. Well, if, if you're telling a joke, just to tell a joke, then I agree. But if it has a purpose, and I have found some of those that are that are really very helpful to drive points home. So it's a lot of fun. Melanie Taddeo 51:39 Yes, absolutely. And that's exactly it, it's the right time, the appropriate time, you get used to where that is. And yeah, it's just every speech is unique and different. Every audience is unique and different. So really, knowing your audience ahead of time, the best your ability is good thing, Michael Hingson 51:55 even delivering the same speech at a lot of different kinds of venues. Each speech is different, and it should be different. Melanie Taddeo 52:04 Yeah, you have to tailor it, even though you say, Michael Hingson 52:07 even though it's basically the same speech, but every one is different. And that's what makes it fun, and also makes it great to listen to, because when I go back and listen to some of those speeches in here, how audience react or don't, then that helps me improve it for the next time. So thanks, that's pretty Melanie Taddeo 52:26 good feedback, or the the response or having those conversations after always gives you that feedback. And you can just evolve from there. Michael Hingson 52:36 Well, with speeches that I give today, I've learned what I should be able to expect from an audience if I'm connecting with them. And if I'm getting those reactions, then I know that I'm connecting. And if I don't, then I'm, I'm well, on the fly literally need to figure out what to do to make sure that I connect, and I've learned enough to be able to do that. But it is important to do that. And that's what a good speaker should do. Yeah. So you on the other hand, in addition to speaking have written a book, I have, tell us about that if you would, Melanie Taddeo 53:15 please. So my unforeseen journey losing sight gaining vision is my book and it was published in 2019. I had been told for years, I should write a book, who would want to read my book. And I was listening to an audio book over the Christmas holiday in 2018. I received it and I was mesmerized. It was also such an inspiring book. And it's like, that's why you need to read a book. I'm like, asking the question, Who would want to read my book, he's like, you don't get it Do you don't understand how inspiring you are. So he planted a seed, and I didn't want the book just to be about me. I wanted something tangible for the audience. So the book is about unforeseen change in our life and how we cope with it, and some tangible resources for them to use for their own life. So everybody goes from preceding change, a breakup, a relationship, a death in the family, a loss of a job, let's say, the pandemic, and all of these things. But so the first part of each chapter is my story on a word. So it might be differences, beliefs, success, whatever the word of the chapter is the title of the chapter. And then underneath, I give some things that helped me cope with it. And that way the reader has a choice to add, try to apply it to their situation, or maybe it doesn't work for them. But I wanted something so people's could walk away, go wow, okay, now I can try this out my life, because these are the things that helps me. And it was such an amazing, cathartic process to write the book for myself, but also had my book launch the beginning of December 2019. And I plan this amazing book tour for 2020 and Michael Hingson 55:00 You know what happened? You got to do it virtually. He Melanie Taddeo 55:03 was this is it. I didn't actually do much of it to be honest, I understand. Yeah, I, you know, I still will do it. I, you know, I've got all these books. And but what was really great, we got to record the book and audio version, my friend ready for an audio book. And I've been talking a lot about it with different things. But it was a great help. In the pandemic, I had a lot of people say to me, your book, Can I order 10 copies for my friends because they need this right now. And who would have thought I didn't know anything about the pandemic, which was definitely a solution to coping with unforeseen change. Michael Hingson 55:40 We've just started writing a new book I and a colleague, are writing a book that we are I originally wanted to call blinded by fear because people, when unexpected life changes come about, literally become blinded by fear and they can't make decisions. And it's all about learning to create a mindset where you can deal with unforeseen circumstances and, and be able to move forward. For the moment that we changed the title Carrie, my my colleague decided better title. So right now we're calling it a guide dogs Guide to Being brave, because I've had a guide dogs and so my whole life has been intermix with dogs. So we're going to have a lot of dog stories and other things in it. But the the issue is that people really do need to learn that they can deal with fear and sounds and deal with unexpected life changes. And that sounds like your book, very much talks about that, which is great. It really Melanie Taddeo 56:37 does. And it's interesting, because I think we automatically assume okay, it's it's terrible life, oh my gosh, how could this? I can't get over it. But we all have that choice. And that's what I had to learn the hard way, that chapel, they came to me and said, Melanie, do you want to just survive? Or do you want to thrive and both. But we don't always have that Chaplain come to us. Sometimes we have worked struggling on our own and not knowing where to turn. And I had to learn a lot of hard lessons. And they weren't easy. So why not share? I wish I had had a book like this. Before this all happens. Michael Hingson 57:15 When you published the book, was it self published or did a publisher partner publishing? Melanie Taddeo 57:21 And it's interesting because I did a lot of research about publishing. And I knew nothing about writing a book. And I Okay, I could do the self publishing to a lot of work, and what if it sucked? So I wouldn't know. So I went partner publishing, and I had an angel publisher, and she was amazing. I created a new language. It's called Melanie's, so I use Dragon naturally speaking to me. And it doesn't take what you say. Not always, no, not all the time. So there was a lot of parts, she'd be like, What did you mean here? And then I'd have to go back. Okay, this is what I meant. And so we were caught through it. But she was such a great help in creating the structure of the book and then helping with editing. And she's like, Melanie, look, I wrote it, within eight months, it was just because it was all in my heart in my head. And it was just, I needed to put it on onto the computer, and just get it there. And she's like, this is easy. It's not a problem, just the deciphering of the Davinci Code you've written for me. And, but it came up beautifully and exactly how I wanted it. And it was, it was a great experience. You know, of course, partner push publishing costs money. So that's something I learned now that I kind of know what I'm doing, I would definitely hire an editor, and maybe Self Publish. Michael Hingson 58:43 Yeah, the thing about self publishing is that you just have to be prepared to do all the marketing, but that's okay. Melanie Taddeo 58:49 And I did a lot of that with partners publishing as well. So half and half, so it was good. Michael Hingson 58:55 Don't think for a minute though, that even if you create a contract, and you actually work with a regular full time legitimate publisher, don't think you won't be doing the marketing still, because more and more, they're expecting the authors to do a lot of the marketing, they do provide support, and there's some value to it, but they do require you to demonstrate that you not only can mark it, but that you have a cadre of people to to help and that you have an audience that you can market to, which is cool. Melanie Taddeo 59:25 And the thing is, who better to market your book than yourself. Because you know the story, you lived it, you've written it. So to me, that makes a lot of sense. And again, I think it's like you mentioned, if you do speaking engagement, you have your book, you can talk about that you can connect with people, and again, it's just making that circuit and I still have to do a lot of that because I haven't had the opportunity yet, as the pandemic starts to, hopefully cool down. We're hopeful I'm optimistic. Again, travelers become, again, something that we're able to do and I hope to go and take it across. Well, definitely to Africa to where my husband is from. So Michael Hingson 1:00:06 we'll see how it works worse. Yeah. Now where is he from? Melanie Taddeo 1:00:10 He's from Swaziland, which is a little bit north of South Africa. Closer South Africa. Michael Hingson 1:00:15 Yeah. So it'd be great to go internationally. Yeah. You join Toastmasters along the way. Melanie Taddeo 1:00:20 I did. Really when I started the charity. Yeah. So when I started the charity, I knew I had to talk a lot about it. And I'd have to talk to bigger audiences and be able to get my message across. And every single Toastmasters, I'm like, I don't need toast, I don't need to drink, I just need to talk. Like, that's what it's a