Kissing Candy in 2013!

May 7th, 2013

Hello all and welcome to 2013. A little delayed I know but better late than never! I did actually write one last blog for 2012, full of praise and thanks to everyone who made it a great year, along with a rundown of what I’d been up to. But unfortunately I’d written it a little late on 31st December and then ran out of time to get it uploaded. It was New Year’s Eve after all and my rollers really needed seeing to so said blog is now nestled amongst many other literary pieces, which lay dormant in the mortal coil of my overworked (and under-organised) hard drive.

So I’ll just say a quick thanks to all of you who made last year so special. There were of course the lifelong friends that make life worth living, their weddings, their birthdays, their achievements. And then the newly formed friends who I’m sure will move up into the ranks of ‘lifelong’ once the months turn into years (you know who you are!). Thanks to the family members who helped throughout a few stressful moments and always keep my ever-floating-feet firmly on the floor. And of course thanks to everyone who hired me to work for them (a rather important part of life I feel!).

Speaking of work, I have been quite busy of late. I had a great time filming with director Nick Gordon, who in case you didn’t know, has directed some ultra cool commercials for various clients including Stella Artois, Levi’s and Skoda, and did a wonderful job in directing me for my latest commercial. You can find me ‘playing’ myself, as the outside reporter for the car breakdown company Green Flag in their 2013 UK and Ireland advertising campaign. (It’s all across the box at the moment but if you can’t wait to see it, feel free to view it in the Video section of this site). It was a long old slog but I loved every minute of it. So a big thank you to the girls at the ID Agency for putting me up for it, Nick and all the gang at Somesuch & Co for producing it, along with CHI & Partners and of course Green Flag for liking me enough to represent them on screen! If any of you should ever need a breakdown company, they are most certainly the people to go to! 😉

Now that we’re already into May (how did that happen?!) things seems to be well and truly underway. I actually feel like I’ve ran a marathon at the moment because whilst I would normally use January as a chance to chill out and recover from the Silly Season, I did in fact not stop and it seems February, March and April have turned out to be just as busy. Birthdays for the niece and nephew mixed in with work parties and late night gatherings with my best chums, alongside an actual full time job, has made the first few months of this year quite literally…a blur! I’m pretty sure we (as in the agents and I) had a fun and frantic build up to the BAFTA Awards, and I’m also pretty sure we had a ball once there. Seeing the TV and film creative’s who I admire for making such wonderful work be congratulated for their achievements first-hand is rather special, and of course very inspiring. But if all that didn’t lift a girl’s tired spirits, the amazing Lancôme goodie bags certainly did!


Then, without nearly enough recovery time, it was straight over to Berlin for a slap dash tour of the city to see my pals Leftwing and Kody show them so-called party people over there how us Londoners do it. (My fav quote of the night at one party had to be “Dish ish ah wery London shound…yah??”, to which I replied in my very London accent “you NO DAT BLUD”!). The boys rocked the place as always, we saw loads of historical things (the Wall and its art being a particular highlight for me) and I remained rather drunk on German beer throughout! Getting to hang out with my best friends and seeing my Loonyiest of Loony’s Banschy was by far THE best part of Berlin (even though I really loved the city too!).



Upon landing home I realised that I had in fact only slept for approximately 21 hours in 7 days. And what a realisation that was to have on the very day I was about to head to the 2013 Brit Awards. One word. Scared! I had a great time and want to say a big thanks to Plan B (Ben’s looking pretty cute these days…just saying!) and the fabulous Shingai Shoniwa of The Noisettes, who were both lovely and really looked after us, and of course hanging out with the old ball and chain that is my best pal Bubbilicious is only ever a fab thing! But I have to admit, after such a lousy amount of sleep in over a week, I was very happy to get home into my bed. All this partying and travelling can cause havoc to a girl’s health! No seriously, it can!!





Now you would think that might have been enough, right? Nope, 3 days after the Brits I decided to stick to my original plan and head for a chilled out and civilised night in Brighton with my good pal S. I say chilled out and civilised and to be fair, it did start on track with some Afternoon Tea at The Grand next to an accomplished pianist rifting out Mozart, and then lots of relaxing back in our room, doing our nails, with a nice glass of wine, whilst watching Come Dine before heading out. But that was about as chilled and civilised as it got! Because from around 8pm onwards, the night turned into what can only be described as a crazy event filled with cocktails, gorgeousness and a whole load of giggles. Me and the Mac enjoyed ourselves so much that we didn’t really want the night to end…and so it didn’t! We did the walk of shame back to our hotel in a very uncivilised manner at around 11:30am I think, just in time for breakfast and check out. So much for chilling and an early night! Worth every second though as we stayed smiling for a week after!

So, what now? Well as I said, May is here and after having completed ANOTHER few trips I’m happy to say that I really do plan to just chill the f*ck out. If I can find the time to chill first! 😉

Until the next blog people, keep sweet!

Gem xx



The Games

September 3rd, 2012

The 2012 Olympic Games in London are over and during the largest event the world ever gets to see, I have had so much fun that I didn’t even need a summer holiday. The fact that such a special occasion landed on such a special city makes it an even greater spectacle for a London girl like me to see. I love the Olympics. I really do! And not just because I’m long jumping onto the Olympic bandwagon like a lot of the Olympic sceptics did once it got started, who pre-Olympics loved nothing more than to rubbish the whole thing before it had even begun, with every single news channel and tons of social network status updates blurting out statements such as ‘East London residents aren’t benefiting from it enough’, ‘the ticketing is a disaster’, ‘the stadium will never be finished on time’, ‘safety will be compromised’, ‘the transport system won’t hold up’ and (the most dramatic and negative of the lot) ‘look what happened to Greece after they hosted it…it will BANKRUPT this country’. I couldn’t stand listening to it all! Why we constantly focus on the negatives until the positives are shoved down our throats, making us finally cheer on Team GB (and in my case, Ireland’s only real gold medal hope, the female boxer Katie Taylor) I’ll never know. Stereotypically, we like to moan, but why do we moan about everything, including the Olympic Games? And now those same sceptics are raving on about how amazing it all was and how “surprised” they are that is went so well. Only today I heard one such (Loose Woman) sceptic waffling on about how negative she was about the whole thing before the Games started but can now see the error of her ways (only to start moaning about how we can’t live on happy thoughts for too long though as we’ll all go mad – quote unquote!).

I’m happy to say that I’m not like those negative bandwagon jumping Nelly’s. I have loved the Olympics for as long as I can remember and I get excited about them years before they start. I mean, it’s the OLYMPICS!!!!!! It’s a sporting event that was created almost 3000 years ago. It’s lasted longer than religions, royal families, buildings, and even landscapes. On top of that, London is the only city to have ever hosted the Modern Games three times! Over 30 million people saw our famous sites when they watched the marathons. Over a billion people watched our creativity, flair and sense of humour, depicted so well by Danny Boyle, flow through the craziness of the Opening Ceremony, which if you loved it or hated it, you’ll never forget it. London hosted the most environmentally sustainable games ever, and a record of more than 9 million people attended the Olympic venues. Team GB did their country proud, the volunteers made us even prouder, and London was a truly special place to be during it all.
Seeing the Queen say ‘Good evening Mr Bond’ with a glint in her eye and then ‘parachute’ from a Union Jack coloured helicopter into the Olympic stadium made even this little Irish girl laugh out loud and shout “YES, go Queenie!”. Then on the 4th August, I stayed in on what turned out to be a very special Saturday night and watched the best all-round athlete in the world Jessica Ennis not only win the gold in the Heptathlon, but win it in style! She made all the other competitors look mediocre in the 800m race as she pushed forward to finish in first place, even though she only needed a top 7 position to take the gold. On that same night, seeing a relatively unknown, cocky boy from Milton Keynes named Greg Rutherford confidently pounce to gold in the long jump made me almost burst with pride and happiness, both for Team GB and the country I live in. This surely had to be the highlight of my Olympic experience, right? Wrong! Because on that same, special Saturday night, Mo Farah ran his heart out during the race of his life in the 10,000m to prove that he was not only the finest distance runner the UK has ever produced, but the best in the world, becoming an Olympic Gold Medallist. I cried like the Banshee when he crossed the line with a look of sheer astonishment on his face, whilst his friend and training partner Galen Rupp running for the USA cheered him on from second place, and I positively wailed like the Banshee when I saw his daughter running up to congratulate him after that momentous win.

And then of course there’s Usain Bolt, my favourite athlete of all time, making the impossible possible, by doing the ‘triple triple’ for Team Jamaica, with another world record thrown in for good measure. So many amazing memories, along with the judo, gymnastics, rowing, cycling, swimming (or should I say seeing the greatest swimmer of all time Michael Phelps retiring in the only way a winner like he knows how to by becoming the greatest Olympian of all time), to name but a few of the many sports involved, and of course women’s boxing, making London 2012 the first Olympics to have a woman compete in every event thank you very much! These images made me forget about what’s normally on the TV; war, politics, talk of double dip recessions and tabloid scandal, which in truth, does bring us all down at times.

It’s strange isn’t it, how we crave what’s bad for us and forget how good something like the Olympics makes us all feel? And Olympic positivity was everywhere in London. There were flags on lampposts, international ‘Houses’ dotted around the streets, talk through the offices with a constant online stream of events taking place and more so, you could just see it across the faces of both Londoners’ and the visitors we had here specifically for it. To top it off, the only time the sun shone throughout our summer months was pretty much during those 2 weeks. And would you have it, it’s only come and got its hat on once more just in time for the Paralympics too! The Opening Ceremony for the Paralympics was watched by over 1 billion people worldwide, which is a massive achievement in itself. I felt Jenny Sealy directed a wonderful ceremony and the tone was set for me when an announcer said “Those who can, please stand for the National Anthem”. It will no doubt do marvellous things for people living with disabilities by reminding us all, in what seemed to be a non-patronising way, just how special we all are and in fact, some more so than others. The Paralympics is an incredible platform for people with disabilities to do more than just survive, but to strive for something greater, no matter how tough the challenges are.

On the 7th July 2005, when the buzz and jubilations of winning the International Olympic Commitee’s vote to host the Games, beating Paris by just 4 votes, was instantly taken from us by the horrific terrorist attacks on our city, I remember feeling so confused and upset. I asked myself why has this happened in London of all places? It’s one of the most multi-cultural cities in the world. If you hurt this city, you’re bound to be hurting someone just like you. Amongst the feelings of confusion, anger and sadness though I also felt pride. I felt the kind of pride I’ve never really felt before as a Londoner. I’d heard the older generation talk of this pride and how they felt it during the Blitz, but I never quite got what that meant exactly. However, on that awful day, I felt proud to be a Londoner and felt happy that so many people from all over the world (including my Irish parents 30 years before) decided to move to this city, raise families here, build a life and make this place home. So, when the Olympics came to my city, in my lifetime, and being that I’d rather feed off positive situations as opposed to awful ones like that dark day in London’s history, I’m happy to say that whilst riding through Moorgate on a London Boris Bike about a week into the Games, I could feel such good energy within the city and I said to myself this is the proudest I have ever felt to be a Londoner. It was great to know that we were putting on such a brilliant show. It’s wonderful to look around at so many different faces who are having a really good time here and see them feel as welcome as they do. And even though I’m not British, having been born on the Emerald Isle some moons ago, and even though when Ireland played against Great Britain my instinct was to cheer on the green; the love, admiration and pride I felt for Team GB every time they beat their personal bests, cheered on their peers, or actually took home a medal, made me think to myself how lucky I am to be here, seeing it all first hand. To feel happiness for Sarah Attar, the first woman of Saudi Arabia ever to compete in track and field, to witness David Rudisha break his own record in the Men’s 800m race and quite possibly run the best 800m ever seen, to cheer on a Ugandan Stephen Kiprotich during the Men’s Marathon to take the gold medal home to his country ending a 40 year wait, or watch Gemma Gibbons look up to the sky and say ‘I love you Mum’ when she got herself into the Women’s Judo Final, will always stay in the hearts of anyone who cares about the Olympics. And because such a great job was done by Seb Coe, the IOC, the builders, cleaners, athletes and all of those wonderful volunteers like my friend HP’s Dad, by creating such a well produced infrastructure and by making sure the whole thing ran so smoothly, the Paralympics have been just as amazing, just as well thought out and just as positive as the ‘warm ups’ were.

Ever since I was a little girl I can safely say I have never missed an Opening Ceremony, I have never missed a Closing Ceremony and I have never missed the Men’s 100 meter finals. I have always shed a tear during at least one of these events, I have always screamed the roof off during many others and I have, during every Olympic Games that I can remember, allowed myself to dream. Something as simple as standing in a line and seeing who can run the fastest reaches deep into the core of what it means to be human. To strive, to compete, to shake hands after and to be excited!

So from me to you London Town, a massive well done for making the 30th Modern Olympic Games the best the world has ever seen, and of course for proving all the doubters wrong, just like I knew you would! 🙂

My First Blog!

May 16th, 2012

Well, here I am writing my first blog in the hope (or maybe unfounded expectations) that someone will in fact be a) interested in what little old me has to say and, more importantly, b) is reading it. After vocally rambling on both professionally and personally about numerous topics for many, many, years, along with constantly typing almost every word and thought that springs to mind in letters, emails, texts and instant messages, I find myself at odds with my colloquial experience and am not entirely sure what it is I’m actually supposed to be saying! If I’m being honest, I’d have to admit that I don’t really read blogs. I mean, I’ve come across them of course…you’d have to be a complete computer novice like my friend ‘Viv’, who can barely turn on a computer without mistakenly sending her whole address book an email about her flatulence problem. Or even my Dad…who once asked if he needed to use a capital ‘A’ or a small ‘a’ when writing the @ sign in my email address. (You can imagine how difficult it was for me to then describe over the telephone what the at sign actually is. “Dad, it basically looks like a little ‘a’, with something that looks like a circle or a tail rolled around it. And you need to press the Shift button at the same time as the @ button to be able to use the @, ok?” Dad’s reply…“Ok good, now which one is the Shift button?”).

So, yes, I get what blogs are about and have indeed come across them. But I’ve often found myself getting half way through some blogs when I become distracted by annoying adverts popping up that I would never, ever be interested in, before logging off and getting back to my pre-blog state. Is this because the blogs I’ve found aren’t very good and tend to consist of self-absorbed fools who love nothing more than referring to themselves in the third person, whilst having their readers congratulate them on how wonderfully marvelous they are? Or, maybe their choice of topic is just slightly off my radar and something I’m finding hard to relate to? Or even, dare I say it, a little from Column A and a little from Column B??? (And yes, I know how controversial Column A is!). In which case, at this stage of my blog I’ll have already lost half of you and the only ones to be sticking around are the friends and family who’ve heard it all before but feel obliged to hang on in there until the end. Don’t worry, as with all my ramblings, it’ll come to an end at some stage soon, I promise.

Now, re this blog, I ask myself “where do I take it?”. Do I go down the deep and sensitive route and whittle on about my emotions and annoyances or should I just try to keep it witty and somewhat political? And if I choose one genre over the other, do I have to stick to this same style every time I blog? How boring! Given this is my website, and there are many facets to my personality, it’s probably best not to pop myself into a Trafalgar Square pigeon hole straight off the mark me thinks! Maybe I should just keep it simple, no mean feat for someone like me! But believe it or not, I do actually like simple. And honest too! Which is great, because my honest but sometimes described as – incorrectly I might add – frank style often gets me into trouble, so best to start as I mean to go on by keeping my blog blatantly real, right?

You know, after typing it so many times, I’ve come to realise that I don’t even like the word ‘blog’, or the meaning for that matter! In my slightly judgmental (even though I’ve spent long amounts of time trying to be ‘mindful’ and learning that ‘judgement words’ are not beneficial) mind, it has so many bad connotations. Words and sentences spring up like tripe, self indulgence, what are they actually talking about??? I can see now that those other blogs have totally scarred me for life, haven’t they?! But being that I now myself am a blogger, it’s best not to defame any of my ‘peers’ by naming and shaming them! Seriously though, blog, meaning to write your opinions and observations down for everyone else to see, because of course I’m arrogant enough to assume that my opinions and observations really matter to complete strangers?! (Facebook status overload, making cups of tea on Twitter etc etc etc). And without a hint of sarcasm, I’m just getting too old to care about what other people think! How much do you ever really sway other people’s thoughts anyway?

However, I do have my own website (thanks to a wonderful web designer named Paul Flood, who deserves massive thanks for all of his hard work, along with a lifelong supply of Jameson Whiskey of course!), which means I should (judgement word, not good!) be keeping you all up-to-date with my musings and funny little anecdotes about my ‘opinions and observations’ on life. And, if you’ve stayed reading for this long, then maybe I’ve created a little interest so will therefore try to keep things fresh, witty and even at times (if I’m sticking to this being honest malarkey) a little controversial? Please pop by again when you have a moment to spare, feel free to leave your own comments too (keep ‘um clean people, I’ve figured out how to edit this website thing you know!) and of course, if you’re ever in need of an observational, opinionated, honest and somewhat rambling Presenter, then by all means get in touch!
Thanks ever so much for popping by to see what’s happening in the wonderful world of Gemma Nixon. Oh no, I’m referring to myself in the third person….that didn’t take long, did it?!?

Until next time…peace out people. x

P.S. Viv is a false name for a real friend…who I’m sure would not be happy to be outed for her technological (and physical) mishaps! You’ll hear more about her no doubt soon!

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