sping mag


By F.i.l.e.s. Auto Team

There are those who say the SUV is dead and it is the age of the crossover, but vehicles like the 2014 Lincoln Navigator fly in the face of this logic and prove it is not true. Though large, the Navigator is perfect for people of all sizes. For those vertically challenged individuals ,the standard automatic sidebar allows you to easily enter the cab and if you happen to be a NBA super star, then there is more than enough leg room.

The automatic sidebar is not the only thing that comes standard, in fact, while there are 4 models of the Navigator almost everything comes standard. The only real decision you have to make is which trim package you want and whether or not you want a Navigator L which offers the optional 4.10 rear axle for increased towing capabilities. Even with so many options included the base model only starts at $75,000.

The fact that almost everything comes standard and fully integrated made driving that Navigator that much more enjoyable as everything worked perfectly together and was easy to operate.


If you are worried about the size of the vehicle being a problem with regards to safety, do not fret, as safety was clearly something considered in the design process. The vehicle has sensors on all sides to let you know when there is an object, or another car too close to you. Each side mirror has a blind spot indicator that turns a yellow light on to notify you of a car in your blind spot. If a car comes up to you suddenly the dash alert notifies you of the proximately of another vehicle. Pop the vehicle into reverse and you get a perfectly clear image day or night of behind the vehicle with a colour coded guide to let you know how close something is.


Another feature that made this vehicle shine was the hands free Bluetooth technology. The interface powered by Microsoft sync is easy to set up and understand. Its voice recognition technology was phenomenal and during this test driving never made a mistake in the command I gave it. Even if voice recognition is not your cup of tea, then all the controls you need to manage your in -cabin experience are conveniently placed on the steering wheel.

You would think that such a grand vehicle would be powered by an equally grand engine, but gone are the days of the gas guzzling V12’s as the Navigator is powered by a fuel friendly twin turbocharged 3.5 liter Ecoboost V6 engine that offers 380hp. The Navigator gets around 17mpg city and 23 mpg Hwy and about 600 km on one tank of gas. As I had the vehicle for a week, I certainly put this to the test.

The Navigator is a perfect for the family in the city as it seats 7 and has more than enough room to hold everything the family needs to move from point A to point B. For those of you that have had enough of the city, simply leave, find a trail and press the 4X4 button to easily transition for those bumpy off road adventures.


Overall, I was more than happy with the Navigator experience and if I had the choice between this or a minivan, the Navigator would win hands down every time.


Entertainment Tonight's Rick Campanelli seen here enjoying TAVI TEQUILA with Tavi Eggertson at Vancouver International Film Festival.

By Paul Lazenby

Ask Tavi Tequila owner/founder Tavi Eggertson about the origin of his increasingly-famous product, and he’ll tell you a tale that sounds like something out of a Hollywood movie. World travel, tense negotiations and thousands of litres of hijacked tequila are just part of the history of Tavi’s fast-rising bottled spirit.

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But when asked if it was worth the hard road he’s been traveling for the best part of a decade, the look in Tavi’s eyes says it all. This is a man who is clearly passionate about what he does, and who cares enough to attend to every minute detail in order to offer the finest tequila on the market.


“A lot of F.i.L.E.S. readership are healthy people who work out a lot, and for health-conscious people, Tavi Tequila is the perfect indulgence,” he says. [Unlike other tequilas] our only real ingredient is the agave plant, which is hand-selected. We use only the best quality blue agave plants, grown in the nutrient-rich soil of Mexico’s Jalisco highlands. The only other ingredient is pure artesian water — there’s none of the methanols and ethanols that are added [by other brands] to create alcohol content.

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Tavi walking in his field of harvested agave plants in Mexico.


“[Tavi Tequila is] a very pure product. I’ve been told by athletes that this is the only alcohol they’ll drink during their training programs, and many others have said that because of its purity, they experience no hangovers. Now, I’m not saying that this is a training product or that you should drink a whole bottle of it, but at the same time, those comments are something that I hear a lot.

Tavi’s insistence on purity stems from his own allergy to alcohol, which used to conflict with his desire to share a drink with friends and business associates without paying the price later. “I meet a lot of people who have a similar problem,” he says. “After I get them to sample my product, I can’t tell you how many of them switch to Tavi Tequila as their go-to drink.”

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But purity alone is not the be-all and end-all — how does Tavi Tequila taste?


“There are more people who don’t like the taste of tequila than those who do, and I’m catering specifically to those who don’t. For people who want a better alternative to ‘gasoliney’ tasting tequilas, as well as many harsh scotches, whiskeys, bourbons, or even vodkas, Tavi Tequila is the way to go.



“I’ve sat at round tables with people who already have their preferences and told me, “I’m not interested in tequila, I like my drink”. But when I get them to try Tavi Tequila with all of its varied notes and flavours — the vanillas, the butters, the chocolate at the end — the next thing you know there’s a round of tequilas on the table for everybody! People tell me it’s just addictive, that it’s the easiest tequila to drink. And by ‘drink’ I don’t mean slamming down shots, I mean actually taking the time to enjoy it. You’ve heard of ‘sipping whiskey’, well I consider Tavi Tequila to be the world’s first ‘sipping tequila’.”


Tavi has formulated three different varieties of his namesake spirit: Platinum, which is un-aged and has a light, refreshing flavour; and the Reposado and Anejo blends which are aged in American white oak barrels for seven and seventeen months respectively, for more complex, oaky flavours usually associated with bourbons and scotches.

Tavi is so invested in the all-around quality of his product that he samples every batch himself, personally ensuring that a substandard batch will never slip through the cracks.

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“Whether you’re in a formal setting or lounging by the pool, wearing a business suit or a bathing suit, Tavi Tequila is the right drink for any atmosphere,” he says proudly. “I even spent a ton of time on the bottle design, making sure that it has the right aesthetic for anyone who’s got it sitting out on the table in a VIP section, at an important dinner, or just kicking back with friends.”

tembalake video with Tavi tequila copy 2
TAVI TEQUILA seen here in international music video with Timberland feat Rosette Luv


Being a person who has always been averse to the taste and smell of tequila, I decided to put Tavi’s claims to the test, and sampled a bottle of the Platinum blend. I was pleasantly shocked to find myself enjoying the taste of tequila for the first time in my life. I’ll definitely be keeping Tavi Tequila in mind the next time I’m in the mood for a casual drink.


For more information on the smoothest tequila I’ve ever sampled, visit !www.tavitequila.com

As king of the JUKE line, the new NISMO RS ups JUKE’s bragging rights to a best-in-class* 215 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 210 lb-ft of torque (at 3,600 - 4,800 rpm) for the 6-speed manual transmission-equipped front-wheel drive model. The JUKE NISMO RS All-Wheel Drive with Xtronic CVT® is rated at 211 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 184 lb-ft of torque (at 2,400 - 6,000 rpm).

By F.I.L.E.S Auto Team


Love it or hate it, the Nissan Juke does get your attention. First off, the Juke looks like nothing else on the market and that is perhaps exactly the buzz Nissan wanted to create around it. People are a little polarized by the Juke with its reptile-eyed front, crazy veering rear backend, unique L shaped taillight detail and tall stance. The Juke’s styling is so unusual that during our week with it, people were asking what it is, even though it has been on the market since 2011.

Added to the mix was the fact that our test model was a special edition sporty Nismo RS version of the Juke. Nismo is Nissan’s factory tuning and performance brand and has been coming out with some phenomenal cars in the last few years.

As king of the JUKE line, the new NISMO RS ups JUKE’s bragging rights to a best-in-class* 215 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 210 lb-ft of torque (at 3,600 - 4,800 rpm) for the 6-speed manual transmission-equipped front-wheel drive model. The JUKE NISMO RS All-Wheel Drive with Xtronic CVT® is rated at 211 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 184 lb-ft of torque (at 2,400 - 6,000 rpm).
As king of the JUKE line, the new NISMO RS ups JUKE’s bragging rights to a best-in-class* 215 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 210 lb-ft of torque (at 3,600 – 4,800 rpm) for the 6-speed manual transmission-equipped front-wheel drive model. The JUKE NISMO RS All-Wheel Drive with Xtronic CVT® is rated at 211 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 184 lb-ft of torque (at 2,400 – 6,000 rpm).

Available with front-wheel drive (FWD) or all-wheel drive (AWD), the Juke uses a   turbocharged 1.6-litre direct-injection, 16-valve, DOHC aluminum-alloy inline four-cylinder engine rated at 197 horsepower. Two transmissions are available – a six-speed manual transmission (FWD models only), and Nissan’s “Xtronic” continuously variable transmission (CVT) with a manual shift mode feature.

The Nismo Juke RS adds extras on the outside such as: unique paint details on exterior mirrors, and highlighted strip of body trim on the Nismo lower side sills and the front and rear fascias, Nismo 18″ alloy wheels with summer tires, painted brake calipers, upgraded brake pads, Nismo Exhaust Tip, Nismo Smoked Front Lamps and Nismo Rear Spoiler.

The Nismo RS edition comes with standard electronic stability control, traction control, anti-lock brakes and tuned Nismo steering.

As king of the JUKE line, the new NISMO RS ups JUKE’s bragging rights to a best-in-class* 215 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 210 lb-ft of torque (at 3,600 - 4,800 rpm) for the 6-speed manual transmission-equipped front-wheel drive model. The JUKE NISMO RS All-Wheel Drive with Xtronic CVT® is rated at 211 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 184 lb-ft of torque (at 2,400 - 6,000 rpm).
As king of the JUKE line, the new NISMO RS ups JUKE’s bragging rights to a best-in-class* 215 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 210 lb-ft of torque (at 3,600 – 4,800 rpm) for the 6-speed manual transmission-equipped front-wheel drive model. The JUKE NISMO RS All-Wheel Drive with Xtronic CVT® is rated at 211 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 184 lb-ft of torque (at 2,400 – 6,000 rpm).

The Juke’s interior actually does live up to the exterior. A unique centre console that looks like a motorcycle fuel tank, houses the shift lever and cup holders. The speedo and tachometer designs are also motorcycle influenced. The Nismo model adds the following equipment to the interior, Nissan suede steering wheel, Nismo spec front high bolstered sports seats with logos, remote I-key with push button, Nismo spec shift knob, Nismo spec door trim, red tachometer dial, Ipod connectivity, Bluetooth, Hands-free phone system, steering wheel audio controls, Navigation System With 5″ Colour Display with Sirius XM Radio, Rockford Fosgate Audio System with powered subwoofers and Nismo rear view camera.

As standard Juke interior features include a six-way height-adjustable manual driver’s seat and four-way manual front passenger seat, 60/40 fold-down second row seatbacks, AM/FM/CD audio system with six speakers and steering wheel audio controls, leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, Bluetooth hands-free phone system, iPod interface, dual front and rear beverage holders, speed-sensitive door locks, tinted glass, and a storage bin under the rear cargo floor (FWD models only).

Options include heated front seats, leather upholstery, navigation system with five-inch monitor and rear-view camera. Also, keyless, push-button ignition, XM satellite radio, upgraded speakers with Rockford Fosgate subwoofer, USB connector, and power moonroof. The Juke’s cargo area is a tad small, but both of the rear seatbacks fold flush with the cargo floor. Standard safety features include dual-stage, dual-threshold front air bags, seat-mounted driver and front passenger side air bags, curtain air bags for front and rear outboard occupant head protection, front-seat active head restraints, and rear LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) child seat restraint system. Front headroom and legroom is generous, but rear headroom is limited for anyone over 5’10. Rear legroom is acceptable and the raised front seats provide adequate space for feet.

On the road, the Juke has a very responsive tracking flat and corners quite well. The Juke’s turbocharged 1.6-litre motor is a fine match for the six speed manual transmission and manages to use the power band to good effect through the tach range. 197 hp is available at 6,000 rpm and 184 lb-ft of torque come on at 2,000 rpm. This little hot rocket will simply scoot, hustle and fight its way through corners with lots of tenacious traction and grip from the sticky tires. Handling is delightful with a real point and shoot feel. Nissan has also tuned the exhaust sound on the Juke RS, so one gets a throaty rasping roar for a full hooligan effect! Fuel economy is rated at 8.2/6.4 litres 100 km City and Highway.

The Juke is cheeky with outrageous looks and the downsides are few. It is polarizing, but perhaps lies the true beauty of the Juke. The Nismo model is certainly very attractive inside and out. A lot of fun to own and drive. Highly recommended.


As king of the JUKE line, the new NISMO RS ups JUKE’s bragging rights to a best-in-class* 215 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 210 lb-ft of torque (at 3,600 - 4,800 rpm) for the 6-speed manual transmission-equipped front-wheel drive model. The JUKE NISMO RS All-Wheel Drive with Xtronic CVT® is rated at 211 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 184 lb-ft of torque (at 2,400 - 6,000 rpm).
As king of the JUKE line, the new NISMO RS ups JUKE’s bragging rights to a best-in-class* 215 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 210 lb-ft of torque (at 3,600 – 4,800 rpm) for the 6-speed manual transmission-equipped front-wheel drive model. The JUKE NISMO RS All-Wheel Drive with Xtronic CVT® is rated at 211 horsepower (at 6,000 rpm) and 184 lb-ft of torque (at 2,400 – 6,000 rpm).

2014 Nissan Juke Nismo RS FWD

Price as tested $28,298 plus options, freight and PDE. $30,293.

Volkswagen Jetta GLI

By F.I.L.E.S. Auto Team


The last time I drove a Jetta many years ago I was not impressed, but perhaps that’s because I was not driving a GLI. The GLI is a city going 4 door sedan that feels like something with a lot more power and sounds like a race car. This much upgraded version of the standard Jetta starts at around $28000 and comes stock with a turbocharged 2.0 TSI 210 horsepower engine with a 6 speed manual transmission with the option to upgrade to a 6 speed automatic. The automatic version has standard tiptronic options that allows you to manually shift gears when you are feeling sportier. It gives you the option to either shift using the shifter for that more traditional feel or you can use the F1 style paddles on the back of the steering wheel if you want the full race car experience.

Volkswagen Jetta GLI

The tornado red paint job (which I had), really enhanced the race car feel but with 5 different exterior colour options, you can easily pick one to match your unique style. For all you ladies who like things to be a certain way, the GLI’s exterior can be further customized by adding some stylish 18 inch wheels. Although, the GLI’s interior changes are limited to 4 different shades of black. Every woman knows that black goes with everything. But just in case you are not sure if it will match your attire, your black options are either a gloss cloth or leatherette or you can choose the optional Vienna leather for that little extra class.

It can be easy to lose track of your surroundings when enjoying this sporty sedan but VW’s touch screen navigation system makes getting lost a thing of the past. If you are a woman who likes her music, then you can also add in the additional Fender premium audio system and subscribe to Sirius satellite radio. Once upon a time a woman on a limited budget could only dream of these kind of features in a Jetta. These kind of features are no longer limited to VW’s more luxurious brands.

While you can mix and match the various options it is probably better to go with one (or all) of the three already offered packages as integration from the dealership is always preferable. The sports packages upgrades your wheels and gives you a power sunroof. The leather package gives you the classy Vienna leather and a 6 way adjustable driver seat with lumbar support. And lastly, the technology package which was the one we tested. This package is what turns this car from just a fun sporty sedan into a fun sporty sedan that convinces you that it might even also feel like a luxury car. It comes with upgraded headlights, the fender premium audio system, LED daytime running lights, that awesome touchscreen navigation system and an integrated rearview camera that integrates perfectly with the navigation system.

The GLI’s graceful look offers you high commodity at an affordable price and if you are seeking to add a little fun to that morning commute, this luxurious car will not disappoint!



When Jessica Tyler first began teaching pole fitness back in February 2010, she had more than her fair share of doubters.  While spinning around a brass pole for reasons other than getting a high roller to “make it rain” had garnered a measure of mainstream attention, pole work was still thought of by many to be the sole province of exotic dancers.


But less than five years later, Tyler has inarguably proven the skeptics wrong, and under the new name of AVA Fitness (standing for “Aerial, Vertical Arts & Fitness”), her business greets 2015 with its second expansion in under three years.

It’s been a long road traveled in a short time for Tyler, who started by establishing her classes at a network of gyms and health clubs where she would personally set up the floor-to-ceiling poles that are the foundation for her system, teach the class, and then take the poles back down before hustling off to the next location.  Her hard work soon paid off, and within eighteen months her classes were full to capacity with long wait-lists.  In 2012, she finally opened the first official AVA Fitness location in New Westminster to accommodate the increased demand.

Word continued to spread about the fat-burning/muscle-toning benefits of Tyler’s system, and soon she was at the point where an even bigger location was needed.  This led to the January 1st opening of AVA’s new 2000 square foot, dual-studio facility in New West, complete with pro shop offering grips, shoes, athletic/competition wear, exotic dance attire, and other essential equipment for pole practitioners of all types.  Tyler even has plans for AVA Fitness to become Canada’s first retailer of the poles themselves, for those who wish to set up their own personal poles at home.


“It’s been interesting watching the idea of pole fitness grow”, says Tyler.  “Not everyone has accepted it just yet, but we’re attracting increasing numbers of people by going out to trade shows and being featured in nightclubs and at fitness events.  When people actually see what we do, they always say, ‘Wait a second — this is not what we see at a strip club.  This some crazy, acrobatic stuff!’  And it’s not just women — we’ve gotten a big influx of new male members as well.  When they see the amazing things that male performers do at our demonstrations, they realize that AVA pole fitness is for everybody.  Quite often we have men coming in the very next day after a demonstration, saying, ‘I have to learn how to do this’.”

Tyler has further increased pole arts’ exposure by successfully hosting the 2013 and 2014 BC Pole Fitness Championships, the latter of which completely sold out New Westminster’s Columbia Theatre.  And for aspiring competitors, she plans to add introductory competitions which will allow amateur pole fitness enthusiasts to compete at a level that is suitable for them.


AVA’s new location will also offer indoor bootcamps, dance classes, flexibility training, aerial hoop and aerial yoga classes, cardio kickboxing classes, and group fitness classes for people who are bored with the solitary gym routine and want a new challenge.  Also coming soon are personal training options including nutritional counseling (one of the most important and underemphasized aspects of any fitness routine), and a relaxation spa offering a variety of services including an on-site RMT.

Showing no signs of slowing down, AVA Fitness will be appearing at the VANCOUVER TRADE AND CONVENTION CENTER on July 25th with their annual bash powered by F.I.L.E.S. NEWS MAGAZINE. For more information, or to schedule your introductory pole fitness session, visit www.avafitness.ca!




LONG BEACH, CALIFORNIA: After the final seconds tick away of an SJJIF world jiu-jitsu championship bout, the bell rings to herald victory for 16-year-old Maria Demers and the first world grappling title to come to Vancouver’s FKP MMA academy.

World Champion Maria Demers demonstrating with Chris Franco at FKP Women’s Self Defense Seminar

In Demers’ corner at mat-side, Chris “Mjolnir” Franco watches his student rise triumphantly from the mat and his mind swims with not just the thrill of that individual triumph, but also the memory of the long and rocky road that led up to it.


During the mid 1990s, the mixed martial arts world was very different from the way it is today.  In those days, the sport was known as NHB, or “No Holds Barred”, and aspiring fighters honed their skills in unsanctioned, back-room, bare-knuckle challenge bouts with few, if any, rules.

It was during this era that Franco, a lifelong martial artist holding numerous karate and kickboxing titles, ventured to Washington’s AMC Pankration (then one of North America’s few accredited MMA schools) to work with renowned trainer/fighter Matt Hume and spar with a murderers’ row of future stars including UFC champion Josh “The Warmaster” Barnett and first-ever ADCC world grappling champion Jeff “The Snowman” Monson.

CHRIS FRANCO demonstrating the true arts of mental focus and discipline, speed, accuracy and power with cement concrete breaking technique.

Knowledge, skill and experience came quickly, and in 1997 Franco determined that he had enough of all three to open the first MMA academy on Canadian soil, selecting Port Moody as the location.

Demien Maia with Chris Franco
Demien Maia with Chris Franco

“It was a tough few years at the beginning,” Franco says with a smile.  “‘The Gracie Challenge’ was still a big thing, and people thought the only way to check out a school was to show up unannounced and have a full-contact MMA fight with an instructor or top student.  I fielded the majority of the school’s challenges myself, and as a result I’ve got a ton of fights on my record that you’ll never see on any database! (laughs)  Boy, am I glad those days are long gone, things are so much more civilized now.”

chris kickinmg

During those “wild west” early days, Franco amassed MMA and jiu-jitsu victories in Guam and the USA, while painstakingly developing a training curriculum for students of all sizes, ages and ability levels.  This regimen included a specifically-tailored, cutting-edge children’s program that introduced the sport of MMA to youngsters in a safe and fun environment — a unique idea during a time when mixed martial arts was still considered by many to be “human cockfighting”. In 2001 Franco relocated, setting up shop in East Vancouver’s Studio West Martial Arts which he would eventually purchase and rebrand as Franco Kickboxing/Pankration, then again as FKP MMA.  But only a few years in, he once again hit rocky ground.  Just days after his honeymoon and almost simultaneously with the news of his daughter’s impending birth, Franco was handed a six-figure repair bill for faulty plumbing in the building that houses his school.

Such a hit would have spelled the end of most independently owned businesses, but Franco kept FKP’s doors open as he methodically chiseled away at the debt, finally polishing it off in 2011.

FKP MMA Vancouver 4880 Fraser Street.

No longer having the financial Sword of Damocles over his head, he heralded a new era by enlisting the aid of Italia Holding Ltd and Casa Coltellaro Development for a complete building makeover, including new floors, mats, bathrooms, and a completely-remodeled office and pro shop.

Chris Franco official judge for UFC
Chris Franco official judge for UFC

“It’s great to make the changes around here that I’ve wanted to make for years,” says Franco.  “And I see it as being symbolic, too.  A new FKP MMA for a new fight team, with many members who literally grew up within these walls and are now competing at the top levels.  Add in the new faces that I see every month as our non-competing membership continues to grow — and of course the members who’ve been with us for years — and it makes me very optimistic about what the future holds for the FKP MMA family.”

chris franco with PAUL

If the world championship medal around Maria Demers’ neck and the other accolades in FKP MMA’s rapidly-filling trophy case are any indication, that future looks to be an awfully bright one indeed.

F.i.l.e.s. Magazine President Robert Yun, Chris Franco, and Former King of the Cage Champion Ryan Diaz
F.i.l.e.s. Magazine President Robert Yun, Chris Franco, and Former King of the Cage Champion Ryan Diaz

For more information check out: www.fkpmmavancouver.com

Phone: 604.876.8782

Address: 4880 Fraser Street Vancouver BC

antons pasta


Located on Hastings Street in Burnaby, Anton’s Pasta Bar is surrounded by colorful local shops and situated on a busy little sidewalk with lots of culture and history. Ask around and the regulars will definitely have more than a few interesting stories to tell.

I arrived with my family at around 3 in the afternoon and Anton’s was already packed with hungry patrons. The decor is simple and rustic and invokes a comfortable fun atmosphere for singles and families. The atmosphere is very upbeat and I always feel like it makes for a better dining out experience.

The open layout of the kitchen is nice too because you can see all the action going on with the cooking staff. It’s actually quite entertaining and I found them to be extremely efficient with the servers. Team work to get the food to the table was really fast and you can tell, the staff is well trained.

Tony, the manager, happened to be the one to seat us, that day. He was super friendly, greeting and seating us within 5 minutes. By the way, if you are unable to get a table right away, the waiting area is quite comfortable. Once seated, the tables are a good size, and spaced well enough apart from each other.

Our waitress was very pleasant and came over to take our drink orders, right away. The kids in my group ordered hot chocolate and loved it.

My sister and I had the Bruschetta to start and then the Linguine Pescatore and Smoked Salmon Dill Linguine. We also ordered the Penne Calabrese as a third dish, for the kids. Little did we know, one appy and one entree dish would have been enough. The portions were gigantic and this is why Anton’s is so famous for their menu.

The pasta dishes were a sight to behold. The dishes were enormous and took up our entire table. The kids thoroughly enjoyed their Penne Calabrese, however could not finish it even between the three of them. The Linguine Pescatore was also very good. The noodles were cooked to perfection and the sauce was just as good as any I have ever tried. The Smoked Salmon Dill Linguine was the most adventurous dish that we tried but was worth the risk. The noodles were perfect in texture and the sauce had a great smokey taste to it. The dill added just the right flavor and complimented the dish, perfectly. For dessert, we had the strawberry cheesecake, made in house.

Overall, the service was prompt and friendly. The pasta was served hot and fresh and we had a great time. You don’t have to break the bank to eat at Anton’s and still have leftovers to take home. I have only one warning though: As we were leaving around 5pm, there was a line-up down the block! I strongly recommend either making reservations (if they are accepting that day) or go early, right before the dinner rush. Thank you to Tony and the folks at Anton’s for making our experience so pleasant!

antons pasta

bruce lee

bruce lee

Bruce Lee passed away in 1973. At just 32, it was cerebral edema caused by a reaction to the painkiller Equagesic that caused his tragic death. Yet more than 40 years after his passing, his legacy lives on in a very real way.

You don’t have to look far for the remnants of his massive fame. His films are still hugely popular. His teachings are still respected, practiced and adapted by martial artists the world over. Posters of him still dot the walls of countless dojos, second-run movie theatres, and man caves. He’s a playable character in the UFC’s newest video game. Sure, we’re closing in on half a century without the revered martial artist, but he’s still everywhere.

So, what was it about Bruce Lee that gives him such staying power? Not surprisingly, there are many factors that contribute to the astounding shelf life of his fame—an array of accolades and accomplishments so substantial that it’s hard to know where to begin. So, let’s just start at the beginning.

Lee was born in San Francisco, though he spent most of his childhood in Kowloon, China. That, ladies in gentleman, is where he got his start in acting, and studied kung fu— the two building blocks of his iconic career. At 18, he returned to the United States to study philosophy at the University of Washington. This may not seem like an important detail of his legendary life, but his higher-education was the foundation for the profound poetry and philosophies he would develop later in life. “Be like water, my friend.” Ring any bells?

During his studies, Lee made ends meet by teaching kung fu. This modest endeavour evolved into his ownership of several schools across the US, where he passionately exposed Americans to his beloved martial art and Chinese culture. In China’s more elitist circles of kung fu instruction, however, this ruffled some feathers. It was demanded by a group of masters that Lee stop instructing non-Asians in the traditional, Chinese art. But as an extremely progressive thinker, Lee was unwilling to make this concession. Instead, he opted to challenge the most accomplished of his naysayers to a fight. This was back in the 60s, so I’m sure that discourse was different, but today, that’s what we refer to as “bad ass.” And in retrospect, it probably goes without saying, but Lee won the fight, protecting his right to impart his art to whomever he chose. The affair revealed Lee’s upstanding moral code, and the ferocity with which he would defend it. What’s not to admire about a man of principle?

But Lee’s celebrity sprung from more than just his principles. He realized his superstardom on the silver screen. So how exactly did Lee make the jump from kung fu instructor to movie star? By dazzling onlookers at the Long Beach International Karate Championships with his two-finger push-ups and one-inch punch (an amazing, short-range punch that looks like it belongs in the Dragon Ball Z universe). Yes, it was breathtaking feats like this—displays of strength that will never be forgotten— that led to Hollywood’s discovery of Lee.

Fast forward two years, to 1966. After a successful screen test, Lee made his breakout performance as Kato on the television show, The Green Hornet. You’re probably familiar with the recent big-screen remake of the show, which starred Seth Rogen as the Hornet and Jay Chou as Kato. I can assure you, Lee’s iteration was infinitely superior. It was in this role; after all, that the US became familiar with his torpedo-like side-kicks. It was also on the set of the show that producers famously asked Lee to “slow down” because his movements were too fast for the camera.
The series only survived for one season, but it acted the springboard for Lee’s light speed ascent into show business. What followed for the Chinese-American were such iconic roles as Chen Zhen in Fists of Fury, Lee in Enter the Dragon, and Tang Lung in Way of the Dragon (the film that produced his colossal on-screen clash with fellow icon, Chuck Norris).

In a matter of years, Bruce Lee established himself as one of the hottest commodities in showbiz, and all the while, continued to preach his profound philosophies and a unique take on kung fu. As his celebrity grew, there were no Lohan-esque meltdowns. As his wealth grew, there came no Mayweather-esque arrogance. His humility and integrity remained rock-solid. Even more importantly, Lee used his fame to repair the portrayal of the Chinese people in American film, which had long been grounded in racism and stereotype.

Yet Lee’s accomplishments extend far beyond the silver screen. Perhaps his most noteworthy accomplishment is the creation of Jeet Kune Do, or “The Way of the Intercepting Fist.” JKD, in simplest terms, was a precursor to modern mixed martial arts; an adaptation of traditional kung fu that incorporated elements of boxing and grappling to produce what Lee believed was the most complete fighting system possible. His introduction and instruction of JKD revolutionized the martial arts landscape of the day, and its implications still echo in modern MMA today. To call him a forward thinker is a gross understatement.

Indeed, Lee’s contributions to the world came at a rapid rate, and surely would have continued had he not passed away so young.

The moral of this whirlwind tour of his tragically brief life? He was a man of tremendous talent and intelligence whose accomplishments demand the respect of film fans, martial artists and philosophy students alike. He was an actor. He was a fighter. He was a teacher. But his brilliance was in the way he transcended so many fields and contributed so much to the world in such a short time. Each day that passes pulls us further from his legendary life, but his legacy will never die. As he said himself, after all, “the key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering.” There’s no doubt that Bruce Lee did just that.

7 skin benefits

7 skin benefits

An active sex life has many health benefits, including giving you better skin and even helping to fight acne! Acne is often caused by a hormonal imbalance, specifically due to sex hormones like testosterone and estrogen.

1 – Sex balances your hormones, helping your skin stay clearer

2 – Having sex increases blood circulation, helping to deliver oxygen to your skin. The benefits of this increased oxygen delivery include the flushing of toxins, adding a healthy radiance and helping delay the effects of aging on the skin.

3 – Having sex at least once a week increases the antibody immunoglobin, which boosts your immune system and therefore may help in the battle against infection and inflammation caused by acne-causing bacteria trapped in your pores.
4 – When having rigorous sex, take care to have a good scrub afterward to wash off all that sweat. This gives your skin some necessary exfoliation and your clogged pores a much-needed break.

5 – Sex boosts our body’s natural collagen production, not only keeping our skin smooth and wrinkle-free, but since collagen is a skin building-block it also helps smooth down acne scars.

6 – Sex can reduce sugar and carb cravings. Sugar and carbs aren’t good for your skin if you have an acne problem. A healthy digestive system equals healthy skin, so stay away from those harmful foods and have plenty of sex to take your mind off of them.

7 – Sex boosts production of serotonin, a so-called happy hormone that increases pleasurable feelings and well-being. These positive feelings will help keep you in the right frame of mind to take care of yourself, including committing to a healthy skincare regimen.



While a quick search of the media may bring up an alarming amount of stories regarding women being sexually attacked while on holiday, it doesn’t mean that women shouldn’t travel or that there aren’t relatively safe parts of these countries. But if you do venture into one of these countries, it is best to exercise extreme caution and familiarize yourself with the culture.


Egypt’s tourism industry accounts for 20% of the country’s foreign currency, but the numbers of tourists visiting Egypt’s historical sites has been consistently dropping.The rise in crime following the January 2011 revolution is partly responsible for the subsequent tourist slump, but the systematic sexual harassment and assault of lone females in the streets are also to blame, according to the New York Times.


After years of tourists avoiding the civil war-torn country, the tourism industry in Colombia has recently shown signs of growth. However, violence against women and young girls remains widespread throughout Colombia, and authorities have a horrible track record with regards to upholding the laws that are supposed to protect women, according to Human Rights Watch. Under these circumstances, those who commit sexual assault are rarely brought up on charges.


The State Department reports that millions of Americans travel safely to Mexico’s resorts and major cities every year, and that the government of Mexico makes quite an effort to protect foreign citizens. However when it comes to its legal system, Mexican justice regularly fails to protect women and children who are victimized by violent crimes. According to Human Rights Watch this is mainly due to inadequate training and corruption. Women who are victims of sexual offenses report that authorities regularly treat them disrespectfully and cast suspicion on their accusations. If that wasn’t bad enough, there are also sections in the law books that make sex crimes contingent on the “chastity” of the accuser.


Kenya is extremely popular for its safaris and wildlife tours, but it is also extremely dangerous, especially if you happen to be a woman. When traveling outside the country’s traditional touristy areas, women should take safety precautions, particularly on the island of Lamu where sexual assaults against foreigners have been known to occur. The United Nations Development Fund for Women reported that “women of all ages, education levels, and social groups, in rural and urban settings are subjected to violence in Kenya.”


15 percent of Guatemala’s working population is employed in the tourism industry in one way or another, which is fitting since the country is packed with picturesque towns and cities such as Panachajel and Antigua. But the justice system in Guatemala has a hard enough time keeping all of its gang-related and drug-related crimes in check, let alone the multitude of crimes against women perpetrated in this Latin American country. According to Human Rights Watch, only one in ten rape and sexual assault cases bring the perpetrator to justice.


From river cruises to the Taj Mahal, India’s booming tourism industry generates $17.7 billion in revenue each year. However sex crime is on the rise in India, and after increased media scrutiny tourism has dropped in turn. Human Rights Watch reports that violence in general against women is increasing, and “the government had yet to properly investigate and prosecute sexual abuse in police custody.” When even the police can’t protect you there is need for an abundance of caution when traveling in India.


While Rio de Janeiro has been billed as the number one tourist destination in the Southern Hemisphere, women should still be on high alert. According to Human Rights Watch, Brazil is known for its machismo culture and history of violence against women. It will be hosting the 2016 Olympics, so if you are planning to attend, be aware of the country’s potential threat.


The majority of Turkey’s tourists largely stick to its beautiful seaside resorts or Istanbul’s historical sites. However violence against women is a pressing issue in Turkey. The State Department says that the Embassy and Consulates there, have received many reports of gender-based crimes, with the “date rape” drug factoring into a disturbing amount. If that wasn’t bad enough, Human Rights Watch states that the police and judiciary also have a deplorable track record with assisting women who have applied for restraining orders against their perpetrators.

But These Aren’t The Only Dangerous Countries

While this list was compiled based on misogynistic cultural climates and known hot spots for women-bashing, the list is not definitive by any means. Many other countries could be deemed unsafe simply due to political upheaval, war, dictatorial governments and more.

Both women and men alike should always take proper precautions when going abroad. Travel in pairs or groups whenever possible, let someone outside the country know when and where you plan to be, and most of all, trust your gut instinct when it comes to safety.


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