Ed Sheeran’s “Game Of Thrones” Cameo Remains News Days Later

As the days since the return of “Game of Thrones” tick by it is difficult to remember when any casting choice was so hotly debated than that of singer Ed Sheeran making his way to Westeros and appearing in the world’s largest show for no other reason than because he could do so. In contrast, the acting debut of One Direction’s Harry Styles has been praised by critics and shows the different options open to singers who are looking to extend their careers into the world of acting.

Nylon reports the casting process has much to do with the difference in reception for the two stars as they have made an impact in very different ways for their acting debuts in critically acclaimed productions. Styles appears in Christopher Nolan’s “Dunkirk”, which tells the story of the British Expeditionary Force that was stranded on the beaches of Dunkirk and left at the mercy of the Nazi German forces in the opening forays of World War II. The appearance of Styles in the critically acclaimed movie comes after director Nolan stated he had no idea who the former One Direction member was and cast him solely on the strength of his auditions.

Ed Sheeran has faced such a sharp backlash against his “Game of Thrones” appearance that he went so far as to delete his Twitter account after appearing in the show as a soldier singing a song. Sheeran follows members of Snow Patrol and Sugar Rios in appearing in “Game of Thrones”, but few have had such a divisive effect on the fans of any show as that of the British singer.

Is Offline Media The Benchmark For The Success Of Podcasts?

Podcasts are like radio broadcasts except that they are available through the internet instead of on a radio station. One Forbes contributing author and podcast creator herself, has pondered the future of the podcast. She has questioned whether the measure of how successful an online podcast is whether it gets into the more established offline media such as radio, magazines and TV.

It is important to note that offline media simply refers to media that is not connected to the internet. So this includes the television which uses satellite signals. Radio use radio signals and are thus not dependent on the internet or even electricity in that matter. Magazines are obviously the oldest form of print media that there is.

So podcasts are broadcast through the internet. They only contain audio and typically involve a person providing news or commentary on some issue such as politics or sports. There is a interesting form of entertainment on podcasts. It includes visual dramas. As you may guess, visual dramas are like TV dramas with no pictures but only sound. They are basically like a story or drama being told to you over the web with no visuals.

Offline media such as radio and TV is still considered to be the dominant form of media when it comes to news, TV shows and films. Increasingly though podcasts are becoming more popular and making a dent in the offline media market. Some podcasts have even gone on to become real radio shows or even real films.

Sarah Werner of Forbes wonders whether is a sign of progression or success or does it represent a limit of podcasts. Can podcasts compete with offline media or is it a different medium with limitations? Whatever your view is, podcasts will continue to innovate, grow and even influence offline media and broadcasting. Maybe new technology can even make pictures more readily available in the future for podcasts.

What You Need to Know about Health & Fitness


If there is one thing about health and fitness and the constant struggle with weight loss it’s that it is constantly changing. With new fad exercises and diets there is always some new fact coming out that changes the way we lose weight. However, there are certain facts about weight loss that have never changed and remain keys to health and fitness.


Fiber is one of the things that remains an important item in a healthy lifestyle. Fiber is important because it helps in the process of digestion. Any doctor will tell their patients that fiber is necessary. Fiber comes in soluble or insoluble forms. Soluble fibers are known to lower cholesterol levels and keep blood sugar levels in a normal range. Insoluble fibers like brown rice, fruits and vegetables help to treat constipation and keep the intestines healthy and moving.


Vegetables are one of those items that remain an important staple through years of changing diets. Vegetables are crucial in keeping healthy and giving your body the very best fuel to accomplish fitness goals. Vegetables are loaded with vitamins and minerals and fiber. They are unfortunately not eaten enough by most people and vegetables must be incorporated into every meal and snack.


The quality of food that we injest is just as important as the amount of kilojoules the food has in it. Buying snacks that have no nutritional value but do have the right amount of kilojoules isn’t the answer either. Fruits like grapes are much better than a small bag of popcorn. A handful of nuts is always a great choice for a snack and much healthier than something processed and the same calories. It’s important to think about what your buying and putting into your body. The quality of food is the quality of the fuel our bodies use in growing, repairing, and also losing unwanted weight.


No more junk food is one rule that everyone has no doubt heard time and time again. Although it’s easy to go to a drive thru for a quick meal it’s not always the best. Programs like NutriSystem make it just as easy to get a quick meal that will give you energy and not break the bank. You can have prepared meals at home that are suited for your own particular diet. These meals can be heated and served in half the time of what it takes to prepare from scratch. These NutriSystem cost sustainable meals also make it a lot easier to stay away from junk foods. Everyone is busy and a great thing is that this company takes away the worry of meal planning. There are options and ways to avoid junk food while making quality decisions in your health.


Exercise has always remained a top priority for fitness. The way to look at exercise is to look at how it makes our bodies feel. If you pay close attention to what you eat and start making better choices your body will repay you. When you put better fuel in your car it helps your car to run smoother. It really isn’t much different with our bodies. For runners this could show in more mileage and less injuries or sore muscles. Heavy lifters may find their weight increasing on the dumbbells because their muscles are recovering properly. Fitness and healthy eating work hand in hand. Once that connection is made it shows.


Taking all of this into account when planning out a healthy lifestyle will help keep excess weight off. The best version of yourself is there and just needs the right kind of healthy choices to keep you operating at 100%.

All About Vincent Parascandola

So just who is Vincent or ‘Vinny’ Parascandola, anyway? From his beginnings to his current work at AXA Equitable, here is everything you need to know.


Vincent Parascandola is from Brooklyn, New York. He went to Xaverian High School in New York, and then Pace University where he attended Lubin School of Business. According to pocomuseum.org, he even returned as a keynote speaker during Pace’s 2014 commencement ceremony.


Vincent has worked for a few prestigious companies in the past, such as Irving Trust Company, Prudential Insurance, and The MONY Group. At MONY, he worked his way up from financial professional, to sales manager, eventually taking the title of Field Vice President.


In May of 2005, Vincent joined AXA Equitable. AXA is a multinational insurance firm that is originally based out of France. AXA offers life insurance, retirement accounts, brokerage, mutual funds, and more.


Vincent Parascandola started at AXA as the Executive Vice President. Then, he next took the role of President of the Advantage Group for the entire year of 2008. From 2009 to mid-2010, he became President of the Northern Division. He was President of the Continental Division from July 2009 to December 2012. And from January 2013 to October of 2014, he was Chief Sales Officer and President of the Continental Division.


Since October 2014, Vincent Parascandola has been the Senior Executive Vice President of AXA Advisors in the central New York and New Jersey area. There, he manages over 200 financial professionals. Vincent works primarily with high net worth individuals. Follow Vincent Parascandola on Facebook.






US Navy Veteran, Azreil Blackman, is Rewarded by the American Airlines

Throughout history, working in the American airlines has had its benefits, and recently, the airline demonstrated how they pay their employees by awarding their 91-year-old employee with a Boeing 777 plane for working for 75 years with the airline. Azreil Al Blackman states that he does not consider retiring at his age. The American Airlines, on the other hand, has no problem with his continued service indicating that he is one of the most valued employees and is knowledgeable on most of the airline’s operations. The event happened at the John F. Kennedy International Airport where the curtain dropped to reveal the Boeing 777.

His Known Accolades

Azreil Al Blackman is a former US Navy service member, and when he got employment at American Airlines 75 years ago, he has never looked back serving the airline with both diligence and professionalism. He has also been awarded by the Guinness World Records as having the longest career as a mechanic in an airline. The Boeing 777 carries more than 240 people, and he hopes to continue flying especially now that he has an airplane. His zeal and ability to work long hours make him a mentor not only for mechanics in the airline, but also others in other airlines.

Pride in the American History

American Airlines decision to award Azreil Al Blackman is deemed as one of the perks that make the US great. The people take pride in the knowledge that the American companies reward their employees and that culture began centuries ago. Veterans have been continuously getting awarded for their services to the nation and for the innovations and hard work in companies they work for after serving their military duties. The American culture is embedded in tales of success, and when the Airline decided to award Azreil Al Blackman, they were following in the important tradition.

Cohen Veterans Network: An Organization That Is Helping Veterans

Veterans are no longer confined to only the Veterans Affairs hospital for treatment; instead, Cohen Veterans Network (CVN), a private program for military veterans, will ensure that veterans do not have to pay for any of their treatments. Cohen Veterans Network relies on public donations and efforts to provide treatment to veterans and does not depend on the government for any excess funds.

CVN was founded by Stephen A. Cohen, a hedge fund manager. After communicating with several U.S. veterans, he decided to create CVN to eliminate their problems. Moreover, CVN was established upon the principle of assuring people, especially American veterans, that they do not have to wait for medical treatment. According to one of the doctors at CVN: “When people call the clinic we can offer an appointment within a week, so there’s not really a wait time.” Currently, there are five CVN clinics throughout the country, all of which are operating efficiently.

Many believe that organizations such as Cohen Veterans Network could be a solution, or for the least, an alternative, to the Veterans Affairs. Having such organizations will fix problems with the Veterans Affairs, including accessibility.

CVN does not only serve veterans but also their families. This is one of the various reasons as to why it can be beneficial to millions of people. For example, being away from a military husband can create emotional or mental problems. With the services of CVN, both the father and his wife are able to get the full treatment.

Veterans Games for the Disabled

Veterans are instrumental individuals in the society. These are the people who maintain peace in the community as either army people or police officers. Upon retiring, they become helpful within the society. Some veterans experience post traumatic stress leaving their families and friends depressed. To help such individuals, some games are conducted. Such games include wheelchair games. In 2016, there are wheelchair games that were done to cheer disabled veterans. One such veteran is Jeff Deleon who hails from Oregon. He signed up for the seven events. Later on, he announced that he is planning on winning gold medals. It is projected that most veterans are inclined on winning during these games. According to the Veterans Wheelchair Committee of Games, the 37th game of the event brings forth an array of opportunities for disabled veterans.


The objective of the veteran’s games is giving the disabled veterans a chance to experience various wheelchair sports by exposing them to multiple as well as organized wheelchair sports and recreation activities. These games play a fundamental role in encouraging the veterans to be aware of their capabilities in life. The games also encourage healthy activities by promoting sports. Being a representation of the events that the department of veterans indulges in every year, there is usually a segment of sports from various corporate as well as community sponsors.


From 1985, the department of veteran’s affairs initiated a collaboration of games to organize as well as execute national activities that support veterans. The initiative enables the organization to collaborate with the aim of empowering disabled veterans. The event is a world class honorary activity that is recognized internationally. Among the people who can participate are veterans with spinal cord injuries, amputation, neurological injuries as well as wheelchairs for sports. The games are initiated every year and participation is open to every interested member.


A legislation that is bound to address the way veterans are taken care of is cooking in the Senate, albeit silently.
While the rest of the Senate is engaged in fights over unmet deadlines and pending bills, the Veteran Affairs committee has immersed itself in drafting a legislation which may determine the care given to the nation’s 21 million veterans. If passed, it could as well hand Mr. Trump a relief, given the dire need for working policies his government is in.
Among the overreaching agreements in the policy cutting across bipartisan lines is the creation of The Secretary of Veterans Affairs docket. Passed with commendable ease by both the Republicans and Democrats, it becomes the first cabinet seat to be passed with such a high approval from the house.
The Veterans Choice Program, which caters for veteran’s health care needs in private facilities, also got a temporary funding in the proposed policy changes. Other instrumental changes relate to firing and hiring in the department and the disability benefits appeal.
These laws are being created at a time when Congress finds itself time-strapped as the August recess draws closer. The agreements from both political divides do not necessarily reflect a lack of ideological differences, as the Choice Program has been one of the most vehemently argued on.
The ability to maintain this political bipartisanship will be determined by the lawmakers’ determination to fix the program permanently. However, lawmakers observe that care for the veterans has for a long time been given bipartisan approaches, acknowledging that caring for those who served the country in uniform has long been largely a bipartisan pursuit but it’s time the debate was approached differently.
Underlining the importance of uniting and debating logically for such a worthy course, Johnny Isakson, the Republican chairman of Senate Committee Veterans’ Affair said that discussions are aimed at finding long-term solutions and do not amount to fighting for the sake of it.

Cohen Veteran Network Provides Free Mental Health Care for Veterans

Many times veterans find a tough time that local veteran hospitals do not provide treatment options for mental health issues. Even if they can get some assistance, people have to wait for a long time to meet a professional and to get the assistance. Now there is good news that a private program named Cohen Veterans Network is providing assistance to military veterans with high-quality mental health care options.

Currently, the clinic network has branches in five locations, and four more new offices are scheduled to inaugurate in the coming months. The clinics of the network try to offer comprehensive solutions focusing mental health and looking to provide services without any delay. “We ensure that people get an appointment within a week when they call to fix an appointment, and that makes there is a negligible waiting time,” said Dr. Amy Williams, the clinical director of north Texas location.

The Cohen network is set up by Steven A. Cohen, a prominent hedge fund manager, and it offers free treatment options that are supported by charity contributions. Interestingly, the network also serves the families of veterans as well, and that means, the spouse and children of a veteran can also avail the free medical aid. The network has a focus on the well-being of the entire family, and it claims that all the military families have responded very positively to the services.

It should be noted that treating the family of veterans and their family are not something VA is efficiently doing or setup to do so. The veteran health care needs are a long-time hot discussion topic, and there is a criticism that VA is not providing a qualified service to the people who served the country. The initiatives like Cohen Veterans Network can address the issues with best possible care and additional options to the military family.

News source: http://www.military.com/daily-news/2017/07/19/us-vets-offered-free-mental-health-care-burgeoning-nonprofit.html

US Business Veteran, Richard Branson, Influences Global Change

In most cases, people who have a lot tend to forget those who have less especially in today’s world where money and wealth have been equated to power. The world today desperately lacks enough personnel that are among the power elite to carry a torch of change. Nevertheless, there exist a few such as the veteran businessman and a humanitarian, Sir Richard Branson.

Richard Branson is the owner of the Virgin Brand, which has over 360 companies, and he is considered as a mega-success not only in America, but also in the world. At the age of 58, Richard is determined more than ever to leave the world in a better shape for the generations to come. He is now paying attention to mentorship programs for the youth and using avenues available to save lives through his experience, knowledge, human, and financial resource. He recently founded Virgin Unite, a non-profitable organization that plays a significant role in humanitarian activities.

He is not only focused on humanitarian matters, but also on entrepreneurship mentorship programs to help young and old individuals dive into business more confidently. Based on an interview with Steven Bertoni, Branson explained that his intentions were to start entrepreneurship mentorship and help people learn more about risk taking. He revealed that his goal is to make a difference at both the local and international level. With hundreds of companies under his control, Branson is comfortable handling more than one project at a time, and just like he did with his businesses, he is convinced that he will use the same approach to save the world.