Blog Directory Martinspiration

Everybody's talkin' at me...including the Cineversary podcast

January 20, 2019

For episode #7 of the Cineversary podcast, host Erik Martin takes a walk on the wild side to New York City in the late 1960s, a town where street hustlers and sex workers find both refuge and rejection--as evidenced in the film "Midnight Cowboy," which celebrates a 50th anniversary in 2019. Erik interviews Niles Schwartz, a movie reviewer for Slant Magazine and co-founder of the Minneapolis/St. Paul Cinephile Society. Together, they examine why "Midnight Cowboy" is worth celebrating all these years later, its cultural impact and legacy, what we can learn from the picture today, how it has stood the test of time, and more.

To hear this episode, click the "play button" on the embedded streaming player below. Or, you can stream, download or subscribe to the Cineversary podcast using Apple Podcasts, iTunes, Anchor, Breaker, Castbox, Google Podcasts, Google Play Music, Overcast, Pocket Casts, PodBean, RadioPublic, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn.

Learn more about the Cineversary podcast at tinyurl.com/cineversarypodcast, like us on Facebook at facebook.com/cineversarypodcast, and email show comments or suggestions to cineversegroup@gmail.com.

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Improve in place

January 13, 2019

Years ago, many homeowners would often embark on ambitious renovation projects with the primary goal of increasing resale value and unloading their properties. But today, folks are looking to fix up their abodes and enjoy the comforts and benefits of those home improvements long term, based on the latest data.

Results of HomeAdvisor’s 2018 True Cost Survey reveal that homeowners are opting to remodel versus sell and move: Over 80 percent say they plan to remain in their existing homes, and half of all respondents are thinking about making improvements. Consider, too, that only 7 percent of owners are renovating to prepare their homes to be sold, per a recent poll by LightStream—the lowest percentage tallied since 2015; 14 percent of owners across all age groups cite “aging in place” as a rationale for making upgrades.

Discover more about this home improvement trend by reading my newest piece for CTW Features, available here.

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Surprise! That home you just bought needs a sudden repair

January 6, 2019

Buying a home is exciting. But it can come with some unplanned surprises. One of these is unexpected home renovation you may need to tackle after moving in. These can be sudden repairs or upgrades required that even your home inspector didn’t foresee.

New data show that many buyers encounter unplanned improvements needed soon after taking possession. A good chunk of them lack the funds to cover these repairs.

Don’t get blindsided by an unexpected home renovation soon after you become an owner. Aim to have extra money set aside in the event of a fix-it emergency. And know where to turn to in a pinch for resources like contractors and repair experts. Learn more by reading my latest article for The Mortgage Reports on this topic, available here.

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'Tis the season for fire safety

December 23, 2018

Warm summer temperatures are long behind us, but that doesn’t mean the heat is off homeowners to follow fire safety rules. In fact, per the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), home fires happen more in the winter than in any other season, accounting for 30 percent of all fire deaths. Yet less than one in three homeowners practice fire safety prevention activities, according to a study by fire safety equipment maker First Alert, which also found that many are misinformed about and underprepared for home fires.

There’s no better time like the present to reduce fire risks and protect your family. Learn how by reading my latest syndicated article for CTW Features, found here.

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No rust on this bike

December 16, 2018

In episode six of my Cineversary podcast, I put the pedal to the metal and ramp up my affection for "Bicycle Thieves,” Vittorio De Sica’s masterpiece of Italian neorealism, originally released 70 years ago in 1948. For this installment, I interview Jacqueline Reich, professor and chair of the Department of Communication and Media Studies at Fordham University and a renowned scholar of Italian cinema. Together, we explore why "Bicycle Thieves" is worth celebrating all these years later, its cultural impact and legacy, what we can learn from the picture today, how it has stood the test of time, and more. To listen to this episode, click the play button below.


You can stream, download or subscribe to the Cineversary podcast using Apple Podcasts, iTunes, Anchor, Breaker, Castbox, Google Podcasts, Google Play Music, Overcast, Pocket Casts, PodBean, RadioPublic, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn.

Learn more about the Cineversary podcast at www.tinyurl.com/cineversarypodcast, like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/cineversarypodcast, and email show comments or suggestions to cineversegroup@gmail.com.

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Songbird sayonara

December 9, 2018

Parrots are precious. And budgies are beautiful. But finches and canaries hold a special place in the hearts and homes of many bird lovers. That’s because that special place conveniently takes up less physical space, and the sounds these compact pets sing are soothing—unlike the harsh squawks associated with hookbills.

Learn more about why bird lovers gravitate toward songbirds like canaries and finches by reading my final column for Pet Age magazine, available here.

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