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Real People Who By Sharing Their Inspirational Stories, Allow Us to Live Vicariously Through Them
February 11, 2006
2006 XX Olympics Opening Ceremony: NBC's Six Minutes of Passion, Four Hours of Fire

On Friday, February 10th, 2006, the 2006 XX Winter Olympics began in Torino, Italy. Torino (Turin in English) is approximately 90 miles east of Milan. Fifteen sports -- the biathlon, bobsled, curling, ice hockey, figure skating, cross-country skiing, Nordic combined, luge, speed skating, short track, Alpine skiing, Freestyle skiing, ski jumping, skeleton and snowboarding -- will be showcased by athletes from around the world from February 11th to the 26th. On February 10th, a primary star of the show was the group of creators who brought Italy to the United States. The Opening Ceremony was broadcast in America by NBC Universal. The team who produced the four hour production, especially, the first six minute introduction to Italy, deserves an Emmy along with major accolades.

I wish anyone in the world with a television could have watched and heard NBC television introduce America to Torino, Italy.

Brian Brown and Mark Levy deserve much of the credit for setting the stage and the tone for NBC's Olympic coverage. The pair devoted the majority of their time as producers to their six-minute "opening". And you could tell. Absolutely amazing. I had tears streaming down my face from start to finish. Braugher, the critically-acclaimed, Emmy award-winning actor who plays Det. Francis Xavier "Frank" Pembleton on "Homicide: Life on the Street" and in the upcoming show "Thief" served as their narrator.

Fabulous choice!

We kept asking, "Who is that?"

If you asked the same question, now you know.

NBC's Olympic Team Creative Director Mark Levy and Brian Brown, the poetic genius, did a magnificent job showcasing Torino to all those watching in America.

Torino, a beautiful Italian city is often lost in the shadows of Rome, Florence, Venice and Milan. Torino has a vibrant history, thriving culture and rich scenery.

Brown and Levy magnificently showcased Torino in Friday night's six minute introduction.

Scott Duncan, the cinematographer for "The Apprentice" and "Survivor," (and the brother of NBA star Tim Duncan) shot much of the breathtaking scenery. Stunning!

And the music. Wow. Superb.


If our kids weren't in school, we'd be booking the next flight to Italy. Thank God we get to head there in June.

To follow is how Andre majestically lured us into the images of Torino. You could almost taste the snow.

Hopefully, if you didn't see the Opening Ceremony live, you've at least TiVoed it.

For the fifty million viewers who did tune in, your participation was greater than last week's American Idol (40 million), CSI (34.5 million), The Grammys (44.3 million) and Dancing with The Stars (29.9 million).

The top twenty-five cities to tune in included Salt Lake City, Minneapolis / St. Paul, Milwaukee, Cleveland, Denver, St. Louis, Ft. Myers, Sacramento, West Palm Beach, Las Vegas, Providence, Indianapolis, Hartford, Norfolk, Columbus, Baltimore, Portland (Oregon), San Diego, Atlanta, Tampa, Pittsburgh, Seattle, Buffalo, New York and Kansas City.

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Posted by jck at 9:09 PM
February 4, 2006
NY's Olympus Fashion Week Attracts Music and Model Celebrities Including The Newly Single Sheryl Crow

On February 3rd, 2006 the Olympus Fall 2006 Fashion Week was kicked off in New York with the Heart Truth Red Dress fashion show. The annual charity show featured celebrity models, musicians and guest designers to raise awareness about women's heart disease. Reuters photographer, Brendan McDermid captured Singer Amerie (above) walking the runway during the Red Dress show, which was sponsored by The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI).

Among the celebrities present and smiling was the newly single, Sheryl Crow.

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Summaries of Other Recent Posts
January 31, 2006
Going For Gold, The Oscars Gold: And The 2006 Academy Awards Nominations Go To ...

Nominations for the 78th Academy Awards were announced on Tuesday morning, January 31st, 2006. 5,856 members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences were given the opportunity to vote. Those who mailed in their ballot sent it directly to PricewaterhouseCoopers, the international accounting firm, for tabulation. Academy President Sid Ganis and Oscar-winner Mira Sorvino announced ten of the nominations for the 78th Academy Awards at 5:30am to an audience of over 430 international media. The announcement was... more

January 18, 2006
2006 Golden Globe Awards Best Dressed, Most Rugged Elegant Movie & Television Stars

The 63rd Annual Golden Globe Awards celebration attracted American television, movie and music stars to Los Angeles on Monday, January 16th, 2006. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), NBC, Dick Clark Productions and Hollywood were the hosts of the annual show, which honors achievement in the film and television industries. 18.7 million viewers (about 2 million more than last year) tuned into the three-hour "Golden Globes", according to preliminary Nielsen Media Research figures. NBC's broadcast of the Golden Globe... more

January 8, 2006
"Brilliant" Chinese Pianist Master Lang Lang: Demand for CDs Greater Than Supply

If only my kids, both aspiring pianists, knew how privileged they were today. On Sunday, January 8th, 2006, the world famous Chinese piano prodigy Lang Lang completed his fourth day of performances with the San Francisco Symphony. Lang Lang's name means "brilliant." And that he is! Sitting in our four loge seats above, we could not only see Lang Lang in action we could feel his soul exuding from ten finger tips that are attached an electric body. His... more

January 3, 2006
The Top Ten Best (& Worst) Communicators of 2005 According to Expert Bert Decker

Happy New Year! Bert Decker is an American communications expert and national commentator on NBC's Today show. He is an author with a global audience. He is a professional speaker, blogger, and founder & CEO of San Francisco-based Decker Communications. So, when Bert announces his Top Ten Best & Worst Communicators of The Year, people listen. In fact, of the over 600,000 savvy people who come to Rugged Elegant Living each month, last summer -- while I was on vacation... more

December 27, 2005
Celebrating The Life of Italian American Actor Vincent Schiavelli

His was a face the world recognized on television and the big screen. However, try to name the man who played the ghost in the New York subway who bumped into Patrick Swayze in the movie, The Rugged Elegance World Marketplace | DVD : Ghost " href="">Ghost or who took on the role of one of the patients in The Rugged Elegance World Marketplace | DVD : One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest " href="">One Flew Over the Cuckoo's... more

December 10, 2005
Matt Damon's New Identity: Husband to Luciana Bozan & Father-To-Be

Anyone who loves Matt Damon, the American actor and Academy award-winning screenwriter, knows that Matt is from Boston. However, when he and Luciana Bozan (previously known as Luciana Barroso) decided to get married on Friday, they chose New York City for their wedding ceremony -- not Boston or Cambridge, where Damon was raised. On December 9th, 2005, Damon, 35 and the Argentine-born Bozan, 29, exchanged vows in front of Bozan's seven year-old daughter, Alexia, and Manhattan's Mayor Michael R.... more

December 7, 2005
Angelic 2005 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show: Getting "In The Spirit"

On Tuesday, December 6th, 2005, Victoria's Secret fashion models were the stars of the ten year anniversary glamorous, intimate and powerful television event which took place two weeks earlier "live" in New York. It was the making of another The Rugged Elegance World Marketplace | Software : Victoria's Secret Lingerie Movies " href="">Victoria's Secret Lingerie Movie. International fashion models like Gisele Bundchen, Tyra Banks, new mom Heidi Klum, and Adriana Lima wore bras, nighties, corsets and other stunning lingerie.... more

December 3, 2005
Lance Armstrong, Tom Cruise, Kanye, Jamie, Dakota, Teri, Condi: Barbara Walters' List of 2005's Top Ten 'Most Fascinating People'

Who are the most fascinating people on Barbara Walters' 2005 List? The ABC TV broadcaster hosted her annual television special on Tuesday, November 29th, 2005. The hour-long program highlighted some of the year's most prominent names in entertainment, politics and sports. As expected, more than half of her choices are in the entertainment business. To follow is Rugged Elegant Living's Play-by-Play of most of Barbara's Special. Here we highlight the people on her list who would also make it... more

November 27, 2005
Reading C.S. Lewis' "The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe" Before Seeing Walt Disney's "Narnia"

Picture this. The kitchen is clean. The dishes have been put away, and the Thanksgiving tables -- which served eighteen on Thursday -- have been taken down. On Saturday, Tim and Jessie were privileged to fly with Randy Dilena and his ten year-old daughter, Amanda in one of Randy's two Cirrus planes to Monterey for the day (However, The Rugged Elegance Inspiration Network: The Cirrus SR22-G2 Aircraft: Flying & Fun in Northern California" href="">that's another story). Niki and I... more

November 26, 2005
Best Dressed, Most Rugged Elegant Celebrities at the 2005 American Music Awards

The 2005 American Music Awards took place on November 22nd and I missed it. TiVo didn't even record it for me. Through the grapevine and the Web I learned that Carlos Santana and the Eurythmics were in the house. While I can't report on who had the most soulful song or acceptance speech of the night, I can offer a taste of who was best dressed and most rugged elegant that night. For those who are not familiar with... more

November 25, 2005
Jewish Holocaust Survivor Is Reunited with Her Christian Rescuer For First Time Since 1944

Ruth Gamzer Gruener as a Child Sixty-one years ago, Ruth Gamzer Gruener was eight years old and living in Lvov, Poland (now part of Ukraine). For eight months, during the Holocaust, Joanna Szcygiel Zalucka's parents allowed Ruth to hide in their daughter's bedroom, behind Joanna's trunk or under her bed. As a result of the Szcygiels care, Ruth survived the Holocaust. In 1953, Ruth and her parents moved to Brooklyn. Ruth and Joanna did not see each other again... more

November 21, 2005
If You Liked 'Rent' The Broadway Musical; You'll Love Chris Columbus' 'Rent' The Movie

San Francisco has been my home for nearly twenty years, and so it is probably not surprising that some of my favorite people in the whole world are gay. That said, the only time I have been exposed to AIDS is when we take our kids to make and serve dinner to dying patients at a local AIDS hospice called Leland House. However, after having been born in New York City, raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and... more

November 19, 2005
2005 CMAs: Best Dressed, Most Rugged Elegant Men & Women at The Country Music Awards

New York City does not have a Country Music station, but that did not stop the Big Apple from hosting the 39th Annual CMA Awards for the first time ever on Tuesday, November 15th, 2005. The festivities took place at Madison Square Garden in the heart of Manhattan rather than Nashville, Tennessee. Nashville had been the host the previous 38 years. Country Music stars were honored for their excellence in the studio and on stage. 3,000 miles away we... more

November 17, 2005
Rolling Stones Rock The City of San Francisco with A Big Bang Beat

Look what four British cats dragged in. On Tuesday, November 15th, Rolling Stones' Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ron Wood brought themselves to San Francisco along with a brilliant Brooklyn-born vocalist by the name of Lisa Fischer, a stellar bass guitarist Darryl Jones and a killer keyboard player Chuck Leavell, to name only three of nine in the Rolling Stones band! "Look What The Cat Dragged In" is actually the title of the band's fourteenth song of... more

Dutch Violinist Janine Jansen Feeds The Souls of Classical Music Lovers in San Francisco

From the The Rugged Elegance Inspiration Network: Rolling Stones Rock The City of San Francisco with A Big Bang Beat" href="">Rolling Stones live and the Country Music Association awards celebration on Tuesday night (that story up next) to Wednesday night with the San Francisco Symphony and Janine Jansen performing Mendelssohn's 1844 Violin Concerto in E minor, we are in music heaven here in San Francisco this week. If you are looking for a sanctuary for your soul, look no... more

November 11, 2005
Celebrating The Life of Business Management Pioneer, Dr. Peter F. Drucker

Anyone who has gone to business school knows the name, Peter F. Drucker. He was known as the father of modern management. He was revered for his "quality" books and his articles inspiring innovation, entrepreneurship and strategies for dealing with a changing world. He was known as "uproariously funny" and a man with a great rapport. While my father taught me to hire people smarter than myself and then delegate, Mr. Drucker taught entrepreneurs like me that dedicated employees... more

November 9, 2005
Roberto Cavalli Mobile Phones & Kate Moss Modeled Underwear: Say "Pronto" In Style

The Rugged Elegance World Marketplace | Items : List " href=",B0006UD5YW,B000699HPE">Roberto Cavalli bras now have a mate for women. The famous Italian fashion designer, who has dressed his wild male customers from head, to The Rugged Elegance World Marketplace | Search : Roberto Cavalli Tie " href=" Cavalli Tie&SearchIndex=Apparel&searchFormImage.x=39&searchFormImage.y=2">neck to toe, has decided to give a glam-rock product to the female population. Of course, men daring enough to "call it" their own are certainly welcome to go there. Cavalli... more

November 7, 2005
Gwyneth Paltrow Becomes Synonymous with Estee Lauder Pleasures Perfumes & Cosmetics

Estee Lauder Pleasures has a new face. The perfume's packaging remains the same, but the primary woman lending her presence to help sell the popular luxury perfume is no longer British model and actress Elizabeth Hurley. Hurley, now 40, has been the face of the cosmetic brand since 1995. While she will continue in her role as spokes model, Oscar winning American actress Gwyneth Paltrow has stepped up to the plate to promote the popular floral fragrance. Gwyneth will... more

Harry Potter Stars Rain Magic in London at "The Goblet of Fire" World Premiere

On Sunday, November 6th 2005, while my seven year-old daughter finished reading The Rugged Elegance World Marketplace | Items : List " href=",0439139600">J.K. Rowling's seven hundred and thirty-four page book for the first time, British moviemakers rained magic on central London, as they headed to the world premiere of Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire. Rupert Grint, Emma Watson & Daniel Radcliffe, 11.6.05 The filmmakers in attendance at the Odeon Leicester Square theater screening included Daniel Radcliffe (Harry),... more

November 4, 2005
Glamour Magazine's Top Ten College Women of The Year: 2005 Student WOTYs

Nina Vasan The annual The Rugged Elegance Inspiration Network: "Glamour"ous, Rugged Elegant Women of the Year Honored at 16th Annual 2005 Conde-Nast WOTYs" href="">"Glamour" WOTY awards took place in New York this past week. In addition to known celebrities and heroes like Goldie Hawn, Christiane Amanpour and Mukhtaran Mai, Conde-Nast's Glamour Magazine is celebrating ten other young women the world should know about and watch for in the coming years. Their names are Kelli Ann Wolf (21, from Missouri... more

"Glamour"ous, Rugged Elegant Women of the Year Honored at 16th Annual 2005 Conde-Nast WOTYs

On Wednesday, November 2nd, 2005, The Rugged Elegance World Marketplace | Magazines : Glamour " href="">Glamour Magazine hosted their 16th Annual Women of the Year awards at Lincoln Center in New York City. The evening was all about inspiring and empowering women. Healthy, adventuresome, soulful, courageous women were honored. From Goldie Hawn to Catherine Zeta-Jones to a brave woman from Pakistan, each woman honored on Wednesday evening was indoctrinated into a rare sorority called The WOTYs. Catherine Zeta-Jones, "Glamour"... more

October 21, 2005
"She Loves You!" - Paul McCartney Inspires Ben to Propose Marriage to Melissa at Michigan Concert

All morning, I've been singing that ol' 1963 McCartney/Lennon Beatles' song, "She loves you". It's been going through my brain after hearing that a twenty-six year-old gentleman, Ben Okuly proposed to his girlfriend, Melissa Steele at a Paul McCartney concert last weekend in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan. During the concert, Ben held up a sign that read: CAN BEN ASK MELISSA TO MARRY HIM? Ben and Melissa were seated in the fourth row, so it was fairly easy... more

October 19, 2005
What Do Starbucks Coffee, God & Rick Warren's "Purpose Driven Life" Have In Common?

Ten-times-out-of-ten I go to Rugged Elegance Select Establishment, Peet's Coffee & Tea in the a.m., after taking the girls to school and then working out. However this morning, I happened to be at KGO-TV where Emmy Award-winning tv and radio reporter and The Rugged Elegance World Marketplace | Books : Michael Finney's Consumer Confidential : The Money-Saving Secrets They Don't Want You to Know " href="">Consumer Confidential author, Michael Finney was giving a personal tour of ABC's studio to... more

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