Photo of the Day #18 – May 25, 2012 – The drive home

Chris Brooker
May 25, 2012

I’m home! Home from Montreal and back in Toronto, feels so good. On the 6 hour drive home, I snapped a few pictures. So today’s picture of the day was taken from a moving car.


Shot in RAW, levels adjusted in Lightroom 4. (Exported to jpeg at 60)
Nikon D5100, 55mm, ISO100, F11 1/400sec exposure.

Photo of the day gallery for the full sized pic
You should really check these out at full resolution 

Bud knows how to make the Honda Indy seem boring in comparison

Chris Brooker
July 12, 2011

Honda Indy Toronto 2011!!! Fun fact; this is the first Indy I’ve ever been to, I’m more of a tech guy than a sports guy and have never really found these types of events to be all that exciting. To me, it doesn’t matter who wins or loses, things are however, different if I have money on the outcome, but that doesn’t happen often.

But watching the Indy from the Bud Winner’s Circle is something truly special. Now, I don’t even have to watch the sport. I can just drink beer, play sports (which is fun, watching is not), and hang with hot girls. What is there now to love. oh, and the beer is free. Unfortunately the girls are not.

I’d like to personally thank Michael Nus for bringing me along.

Wanna know what it’s like, check out this video I made;

Picture bomb!



Just hanging with the top 3 Bud Pit Crew girls.







Girls everywhere, these girls greet you when you come in.


These girls played basket ball with us for like and hour.






You can see all my photos in this flickr set, enjoy

All this makes we want to do anything to go to Bud Camp this year!!!!! Bud Camp, Bud Camp! These ladies want me to go.


HP TouchPad – In my hands!

Chris Brooker
July 7, 2011

A week or so ago I get an email asking if I want to come to an exclusive blogger event with not a lot of details, I checked my calendar and had nothing so I said sure. A few days after that I got an email that said it was for the the HP TouchPad and I got excited! I’ve been dying to play with a WebOS tablet for a long time. I was thinking kewl, I get to play with it, see how it feels, and see how WebOS behaves on a much larger screen.

The event was at the always wonderful Marben Restaurant on Wellington in Toronto. I got there and headed downstairs.


Get downstairs and am greeted by the lovely ladies from Hill and Knowlton; Courtney and Rachel. Get my name tag and chat for a bit (cuz they’re wonderful ladies), then head on in.


The food at Marben is just fantastic. These little burger quarters are so unbelievable that I had to ask about them, they’re braised beer ribs wrapped in ground beef. All the food was amazing but these really stood out.


After a grabbed a quick bite and a beer, I found someone showing off the TouchPad, as I really wanted to see it in action pulled him over and finally got some hands on time.


I had to end my demo short as the event was getting started and I needed to take my seat.

Then they dropped the bomb, everyone gets a TouchPad!!! I was seriously shocked and super excited.


I tweeted “#TouchpadTO pulls an Oprah, everyone gets a touchpad!” and my phone blew up with replies. This is a hot commodity in Toronto.


We unboxed them and started booting them up, we were told we needed them setup and activated for some of the events later in the evening. Here’s mine turning on.


Created a WebOS account and it’s setting itself up and rebooting. Time for a few more mini burgers and some beer.


Sorry about this photo Erin, I’ll just assume you were thinking about kissing the TouchPad.DSCN2101

After we all got the TouchPads unboxed setup and running they did a quick demo so we all had an idea on how to use it. Which is good cuz boy did we need it for the next part of the night.


Up came Marty and Kirk from Brass Facts who run a super kewl trivia night at Brass Facts at The Ossington. This was by far the best and most brilliant way to get people to engage with the new device of any event I’ve ever been to. Kirk and Marty had a series of very difficult trivia questions and we had to use the TouchPad to do research to come up with the answer. First prize was a $100 gift certificate to Marben Restaurant. This was so much fun and I used the TouchPad constantly during the entire contest.

One of the awesome things I discovered about the TouchPad during this quiz was it runs flash!! Yes, flash! The questions was “On the website for the company who’s slogan is ‘Impossible Is Nothing’ there is a pop star, name her husband”.

The company was Adidas and of their website is in flash. (So it doesn’t drive you crazy, it’s Katy Perry and the answer is Russell Brand, you’re welcome).


You can see the answer sheets on the table. I came in 3rd, argh so close.



I’d been pawing at it, it’s now all finger printy. You can see my quiz sheet open on the table.




Some rocking top Toronto people, Casie Stewart, Wes Bos (or WebOS 😉 ), Raymi the Minx, in the back OakleyInc. I also see a nice Louis bag.

Wow, what an incredible night. Thanks to everyone at HP, Hill and Knowlton and Brass Facts you guys really blew my socks off.

I used the TouchPad for most of the night when I got home and a bunch today. I’ll do another post about the device and my impressions a bit later when I really have it as part of my life. Looking forward to trying the WordPress App!

Grimbergen – The beer so good nothing can keep it from us

Chris Brooker
February 24, 2011


Grimbergen Dubbel is a new beer that Carlsberg is bringing to Canada. It’s currently available in 12 countries and I’m so glad it’s coming here. Most dark beers tend to have a very bitter, almost metallic taste, that takes a few sips to get used to. Not Grimbergen, this medium dark dubbel is sweet and light with flavours of caramel. However great the beer is on it’s own, it has a truly legendary history.


The Grimbergen Abbey was founded in 1128 as a Premonstratensian monastery – a Catholic religious order founded by Saint Norbert.  The abbey was ravaged by fire in 1142; in 1566 it was destroyed during the Religious wars; and in 1798 it was demolished yet again.  The abbey was miraculously rebuilt after each wave of destruction.  Fittingly, the Fathers of Grimbergen adopted the phoenix as their emblem, symbolizing the perpetual rebirth of their abbey.  Their motto is, “Burned but never destroyed.”

Grimbergen beer was first brewed at the Abbey in 1128, and despite a tumultuous history, the Fathers have protected their recipes throughout the centuries.  Today, Grimbergen Dubbel is a lively and inimitable brew that honours its phoenix symbol through a wealth of flavours born anew with every sip.  Grimbergen Dubbel has a very rich, bittersweet flavour with hints of caramel, thanks to the mixing of several malts and a double fermentation process.  Burgundy in colour, it has an alcohol content of 6.5 percent by volume and is approved by the Union of Belgian Breweries (UBB).  It is certified as an official Belgian abbey beer.


Michael Nus with Fathers Erik de Sutter and Karel Stautemas, who came all the way from Belgium to share their incredible beer.


Nick Relph the Director of Marketing for Carlsberg Canada.


I urge you to try this beer. Yes, because it’s historic, yes, because it’s beer but Yes, becase it really is a great beer. I know I’ll be asking for at fine establishments in March. Also the 6.5% alcohol packs and awesome punch with great flavour.

Cavalcade of Travis 2010

Chris Brooker
November 29, 2010

Saturday was the Toronto Cavalcade of Lights. They turn on the lights on the big Christmas tree and skating rink at Nathan Phillips Square, some bands perform, and then there’s fireworks! This is apparently something they typically do every night for a week from what I understand but this year, do to renovations in the square, they’re only doing it one night.

This is my first year ever doing this, so really I didn’t know what to expect except being outside for a few hours in the cold. Cold weather Chris, check.

Debbie Travis was there in full effect, signing autographs and taking photos. How could I pass this up.

Oh that’s right! Debbie Travis with Krista and I.

The huge outdoor public rink at Nathan Phillips before the lights got turned on. Look at all the people wizzing by.

I though this shot was kind of interesting. Static me in the foreground blurry motion in the back.

The stage, where all the Canadian music “superstars” would be performing. Headliner, Sean Desmond. We went inside Eaton’s Centre for that.

Kickin’ in cold school.

Not a bad night. I can finally say I’ve now been to the lighting of the tree at Nathan Phillips square and I got to meet Debbie Travis. But man, it was crazy busy down there and the renovations really caused a lot of bottlenecks going in and coming out of the crowd.

Furry lip warmers; an expedition to the 1970’s (Movember Gala Toronto)

Chris Brooker
November 28, 2010

Hello my friends, I’d like to welcome you back to a time where unfettered hair growth was a sign of sexual virility. Where the best moustache and attitude ensured you scored the hottest babe. I’d like to welcome back to the 1970’s which was taking place at the Movember Toronto Gala at the Kool Haus.

you sir are a distinguished gentleman and sexually virile

This fine group was our home crew @Chels_McD, @MichaelNus, @CBrooker, @Smichm, Nick (no twitter), @40deuce

My ‘stache is sad 🙁

The distinguished Judge for “LameMo” and all around amazing Movember leader for Toronto Sean Moffitt (@seanmoffitt). He’s dressed as a cycle cop, but it really looks like at any minute he’s going rip off his pants and start dancing. Either that or he’s the cop that just pulled you over in an adult movie ;).

@Chels_McD and @40Deuce taking a bite out of crime!

2 Mo-less wannabe’s representing for the fallen Mos

A wonderful and classy lady; Lisa Potter (@lp1230) runs PR for the Movember organization. Pleasure to have met and spoken with her. PS: thanks for the drink 🙂

Gogo dancer!


It got pretty packed, capacity 4000, Number of people that RSVP’ed 6,000.

Serious Mopitition, they are ready to throw down and I’m there to help like only a gentleman can, by documenting it on film.

Canadian Air Guitar Champion shredding like no other.

This yonge women lost to the swedish chef on the left. Took her a long time to change into that latex dress. But looking good!

After the event, I got a chance to talk to her. (Although I can’t remember her name now 🙁 ) She was explain what it felt like to lose. I was smiling for the camera.

Amazing costume!

The WINNER of the best Mo for Movember Toronto 2010! Can you feel it?!?

Give that man the hardware!

Giving me some pointers

What a great night. Thanks to everyone to helped make it kick ass!

#CokeZeroFansFirst gives a random mens league hockey team a night they won’t soon forget

Chris Brooker
July 28, 2010

Have you heard of the Coke Zero Fans first initiative? Maybe you have, maybe you’ve heard about parts of it. Last night I got to experience a great moment when regular people got surprised with a night of their life.

What they did was select a random random mens league hockey game at the Master Card Centre (Leaf official practice arena). Sneak into the dressing room before anyone arrived and fill it with new jersey’s a leaf’s jersey and a coke jersey, coke and tons of other stuff.

When the guys arrived they were totally stunned and confused as to what was going on. It was pretty awesome. Then all of a sudden Komisarek, Versteeg & Armstrong walked in and surprised the crap out of them.

Then a Coke representative dropped all the details. All the guys are going to compete in a skills challenge with the leaf’s for a chance to win the opportunity to be “A Leaf for the day”.

On September 21, 2010 the winner will spend the day as a Leaf, goto press conferences, eat meals and play in an exhibition game against the Senators. From what I understand you can’t buy tickets for this game you can only win them! I might have a couple to give away, so you had better watch out!

Are you sure you don’t want a Coke Zero?

Hanging out in the dressing room before the cat was let out of the bag.

Sean Ward interviewing the lovely Coke Zero models.

Cones set up for the drills and the skills competition.

Here I am with the always interacting Joallore or @ClickFlickca

CityTV doing an interview. I know it’s sad but I don’t know either of their names.

Group shot

I’m at a rink. (Gratuitous self shot).

Media scrum with the big winner of the night. He’s going to be the Leaf for a day!

Leafspace Monika with a K, looked an smiled while interviewing Mike Komisarek.

Mike Komisarek with the great team behind the Coke Zero event.

Pointing at something on the Media wall.

Here I am with the lovely Monika from

Here is a whole bunch of what I think we were referred to as the “New Media” crew. (re: the nerds who are always on their phones and do stuff with the internet). There was also barely a cell signal in there, which made tweeting and txt’ing near impossible.

Here’s another one of me.

Thanks to everyone there who let me take part in such a kewl an memorable night! #CokeZeroFansFirst

For anyone interested all the photos I took that night can be found here. Video to come when I get a chance to edit it.

Gladstone Hotel’s first tweetup – Tweetgasm v1.0

Chris Brooker
July 27, 2010

Last night was the Gladstone Hotel’s first tweet up and it was a really good one. I do have to give credit where credit is due and thank Jeremy at the Gladstone for hosting the event (@TweetgasmTO) and the awesome crew that put it together Casie Stewart (@cassiestewart), Michael Nus (@MichaelNus), Mark Pavlidis (@mhp), and Rannie Turingan (@photojunkie). Each and everyone of them are amazing and if you don’t already, you should get to know them.

Waiting for the Queen Street car to take us out West. Thinking about how long the damn street car is taking to come. Also, thinking about Ardene and how great I make it look by being in front of it.

The always great Casie Stewart and Loren (I think, msg me and I can fix it 🙂 )

@PhotoJunkie working on netbook that was streaming his live photos.

The beautiful Carly-Ann Fairlie and the equally lovely Sheldon Levine

Casie Stewart, Jeremy Vandermeij and Michael Nus

I’ll update the names of people in the other photos when I get a chance.

Thanks everyone for a great night with great (and beautiful) people.

Kegs, Jello and Keg stands

Chris Brooker
July 7, 2010

June 21, 2010 – A friend mine was having a keg party, asked if we’d come along. There is no way I’m turning that down!

The guests of honour. Mill St Organic and Mill St tankhouse.

Lee-anne made Jello shooters, a wonderful addition!

Keg stand!

Spadina blackedout out

Chris Brooker
July 7, 2010

June 20, 2010 – I looked outside and the east side of Spadina all the way up was completely blacked out. Looked really crazy.

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