Thursday, November 10, 2016

Trump Wins: Democracy on Trial

Trump Wins: Democracy on Trial

First of all I will have to preface this blog by saying that I am in no way a political expert or by no means interested in politics. I am neither a Democrat nor a Republican. I am a FREE thinker and I vote for whom I consider to be the best person for the job, regardless of political affiliation, or gender. Saying that, and being able to read and comprehend complex issues, I am educated and versed with the ability to see things and concepts from an objective point of view (and not emotional) instead of the hazards of myopically shielded insight. Thus, my reflection on this particular issue are my own and not intended to create animosity, however, it will.

The 2016 Presidential Election, Tuesday, November 8th, was an interesting testament to the many voices of the American people. Democracy in progress. On the one side, you have the Democrats, who have represented the nation under President Barack Obama, (a President that I admire and respect despite his political decisions) who has been in office for the past 8 years. The Democrat philosophy is to represent the people who elected them by instituting government programs that can only be funded by the increase in taxes (where taxes are allocated according to net worth) and to redistribute those funds across the American landscape and to provide people with the government resources to which they may be entitle and are created by one or both parties. But, getting back to point...

Under the US Constitution, no president can serve more than two 4-year terms. Thus, a new president will have to be elected to hold the highest seat in the country. Via political maneuvering and a convention, the democrats selected millionairess, career politician and Former First Lady Hillary Clinton to represent them as their prospective President. A candidate with extensive political experience, ambitions but NO military experience.

On the other side, you have the Republicans. Their philosophy is generally the same as the Democrats in as much as they also represent the people who elected them but, hold that free enterprise and the achievement of personal success is accomplished through work and not entitlements. Taxes under this philosophy are allocated via a flat tax across the board regardless of personal assets. 

There is, of course, many other differences between the two parties, fundamental differences, but suffice it to say and for the purpose of this blog, the philosophies are in its simplest form. Again, I am not interested in the details of why both candidates do what they do.

The Republicans, via political maneuvering and convention, selected Businessman and billionaire Donald Trump to represent them as their prospective President. A candidate that has NO political experience as a government elected official (keep in mind that running a business may be political in nature, as well) and NO military experience.

Now that the framework has been constructed, good or bad, this election has been filled with the worse qualities of human nature exhibited by people who sided with one candidate or the other. And, this will piss you off more than my last statement. It is our observation, (keeping in mind that I am a progressive, free-thinker that will only vote for the best person, whomever that might be), that the left-wing die-hard democrats are hypocritical, violent and usurp the democratic process for the benefit of the media. I am not talking about the majority of the democrats who voted and then accept, via the democratic process, that their candidate lost the election. Take for example the graciousness of Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's concession speech. Ms. Clinton exemplified, the true democratic process and the smooth transition of Power.I am talking about those that express their views by protesting, defacing, disruptions, crime and basic hate and bigotry.

The assumptions being thrown around the political battlefield by the uber-Democrats, who supposedly believe in tolerance and equality is appalling and disturbing. The violence they exhibited toward expressions that countered their ideals is everything but passionate and typical of bullying. In other words, if you don't agree with their values and ideals you are an ignorant right-winged Nazi full of bigotry, evil and hate and thus a target for bigotry, evil and hate. That logic is INSANE.  I am not a Republican and I didn't agree with all of the ideals that are being postulated by the left (or the right) and I am not a bigot, I am not evil and I try not to hate...lol.
Not any better was the uber-Republican (the far right) stand against the governments policies regarding the President, US/Mexico border, the asylum of people of Middle Eastern decent, gun control, and the list goes on.

Both sides of the political spectrum have displayed the worse in Americans. Personally, I am disgusted by both sides. And, even NOW, protests are being organized by the losing party and gloating by the winning party are prevalent on social media and the public streets and highways.  The democratic process is unique in the world and has worked very well for over  200 years. The only issue that constantly comes up with a democratic system that comes into play every single election and is brought up as a negative aspect of the election process by the losing party is the Electoral College. Always, the popular vote verses the electoral college and how the election was stolen from the losing party.

HERE IS A TRUTH....The electoral college actually BENEFITS THE DEMOCRATS. Thus, if a Republican won, it was because the Democrats DIDN'T DO THEIR JOB CORRECTLY. Don't blame anyone else but YOUR PARTY FOR FAILING. There is actually reasons for the electoral college and it was created by minds that foresaw what we are experiencing today.

I am disgusted by the idiocy of people on social network that voice an opinion based on nothing more than emotion and hate for people they do not know. I am disgusted by the constant display of bigotry, evil and hate by a people devoted to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. A people that profess Love and understanding. A people that rise above pettiness and in times of hardship come together to lend a helping hand.

And, I am going to say this as no one else will, it is the democrats that are causing this division we are facing today. It is the democrats that are bigots and haters. It is the democrats that have lost sight of the meaning of a democratic system. It is the democrats that are violent and disruptive. It is the democrats that have forgotten that half of the people have voted for the opposite party. This is NOT some 3rd world country or France where there is a history of coups.

With regard to the Republicans. I know where they stand each and every time. But, from my experience the Republicans have always come through when the democrats have not. Furthermore, I know both Democrats and Republicans and I have never come across a Republican that has hated more, is as bigoted and is as violent as a die-hard left wing Democrat.

Donald Trump has won the election, I have to live with that decision. I don't have to like it and I can voice my opinion to my elected officials and I can vote him out the next time there is an election but from what I can see, Democracy is on Trial.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Social Media and the Lack of Time

Social Media and the Lack of Time

Welcome back. We have been striving to re-organize what we do and we have been out of the loop for the past few months. We are always creating and some of our project succeed and, of course, a lot of the projects fail. This is the nature of creativity.

C47Houston is a social network-based entity, however, we have found that the time it takes to post, update and to, basically, keep up with social networking is a monumental task in itself.  Social networking is a full-time job, especially when one has a multitude of networking sites to maintain. As a result one may not have the time or energy to maintain each and every network site as it should be maintained, which is a shame as social networking, in itself, is a valuable tool for any business entity hoping to carve out a small piece of the demographic. 
Let's take, for example (to give you a sense of the problems associated with running your own publication and business), our own publication ventures, C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine and C47Houston WEEKLY. Both publications took an enormous amount of time, toil and energy to accomplish on a monthly and weekly basis. On top of securing advertisement, writing content (including the feature and special talent interviews), taking and editing pictures (both content pictures and cover/feature pictures), layout, creating graphics, grabbing and editing videos, dealing with software issues, publishing hardcopies and dealing with printing issues, dealing with online publications issues,  attending premieres and industry events, having countless meetings, all with three-advanced weeks of publication content in mind for the WEEKLY and two months of advanced-publication content in mind for the Monthly publication, I then have to make sure that all social media network sites are apprised of the newest and current NEWS regarding the entertainment scene in the 4th largest city in the United States, Houston, Texas. This all takes TIME. Time that you don't have. Time that passes so quickly that something that takes one hour to complete is taking a better part of a day. There is ONLY 24 hours and unless you are a zombie, you need to sleep. 
The amazing part is that the publication issues and all that goes with those issues takes about half of the day. The other part is dealing with the social media aspects of the "business side" of the publication (not the advertising part of the business, but the aspects associated with providing content to your own Website, two Facebook pages, Twitter, LinkedIn, SnapChat, Instagram, blogs, Google, Pinterest, Tumbir, Youtube, Vimeo,  Reddit, Flickr, Periscope and all the other competing social network sites that takes most of your time) This, by itself, unless you have the staff that deals strictly with the social network sites, takes the other half of the day. Realistically, one has to ask him or herself, "do I forsake the social network aspect of the industry and concentrate on the publications thus making it far superior or do I focus on branding and providing content to the social network sites thus failing to provide amazing content to the magazines OR, do I find an equal balance and reduce the social network "work" to only the few popular sites providing me with a more manageable outlook, thus sacrificing a better product but also, and at the same time, being able to get your message out to a social network audience?"
The answer is simple enough. Time Management and balance is the only way to go. I say this because you have to face the fact that your demographic is changing. It is mobile. It has an attention span of less than three minutes and since cell phones are generally the size that fits into the palm of your hand, being able to provide quick, concise and to the point content on a very small display is going to attract your audience more so than if you provide something like this particular blog. However, if you are reading this you are more likely to be able to read for content and not just glance at a few lines of content. 

Over the next few months, we will endeavor to write about an aspect of life that we find interesting and provides issues that, we hope, will keep you wanting to come back for more.  WE are not bloggers and we are far from it. WE will hope to write about something in a two hour period and publish it. WE will most likely write a few paragraphs while having coffee. Good or bad, useful or not. Please stay tuned!!!

Written by the Publisher of C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine and C47Houston WEEKLY, Hector Luna. Monday, November 7th, 2016  All Rights Reserved www.C47Houston.com  All Rights Reserved. All content belongs to H.L. Media Productions.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Dir. Juven Cavazos screens A Lonely Woman 02/08/16

Texas Director Juven Cavazos and the team at the Vicven Films Productions company test-screened their new feature drama/action motion picture "A Lonely Woman" to a full theater February 8th, 2016 at the Alamo Drafthouse-Vintage Park. C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine was invited to the screening and found the movie to be both entertaining and possessing a more than average independent production value. Sound recording by William Madrid, and Cinematography and lighting by Olga Vasquez and armed with a good story, the team was able to make a very well crafted feature movie. 
A Lonely Woman stars award winning actress Youlika Skafida, ( http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1779658/ ) who was not in attendance due to scheduling conflicts but some of the other actor were there including Bailey McAndrews, Lance Henry, Jose Figueroa, Andrew Martinez, Wallace Jones, Michael Tula, Tommy Poynter, Frances Watson, and a few of the crew members. For a full listing of talent in this movie check out the IMDB page at: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3027994/ 

We met the Director/Writer Juven Cavazos  (  http://www.imdb.com/name/nm5614277/  ) prior to the screening and we were impressed by his desire to make a feature movie. However, we were very skeptical of the production value of a first time director. WE were pleasantly surprised that the movie came out as professional as Mr. Cavazos was during our meeting.  WE grabbed several videos and Director Juven Cavazos was featured in issue 43 of C47Houston WEEKLY. That issue is released and you can order it at: 

Better yet, Why Order and Pay when you can get it for FREE: 

See the videos: 


And, check out some of the pictures we took at the screening: 

Learn more about A Lonely Woman by visiting their website at: 

And, "Like" them on facebook at:

And "follow" them on Twitter at: 

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Director Juven Cavazos "A Lonley Woman"

Check it out, we get an opportunity to sit for coffee with Director and Photographer, Juven Cavazos. He is screening his Directorial Feature motion picture "A Lonely Woman" coming up this Tuesday at the Alamo Drafthouse-Vintage Park. We are invited to the screening and invited to give some personal insight into whether this movie, his first, is skillfully made to a commercial audience.

"A Lonely Woman" written and directed by Mr. Cavazos stars Award Winning Actress Youlike Skafida in a very emotional role.http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1779658/ Even though Mr. Cavazos is a skilled photographer, he hired New York City's Olga Vazquez as the projects Cinematographer. 

Director Juven Cavazos gave us an insightful and quick interview for our WEEKLY publication number 43. That issue is scheduled to be released Wednesday, February 10th. If you want to grab a copy, you can order the issue for $4. on our website at: www.C47Houston.com on Wednesday the 10th.

Learn more about "A Lonely Woman" on their IMDB page and view the cast and crew list at:

Thursday, January 21, 2016

The GCFVF Call for Projects

The Gulf Coast Film & Video Festival and the Board of Directors are calling on movie-makers and screenwriters to enter their projects to the 18th Annual 2016 Gulf Coast Film & Video Festival, taking place Friday and Saturday, September 23rd and 24th, 2016. Now until March 4th, 2016, movie-makers and screenwriters can enter their projects at EarlyBird rates.
Learn more, get details, forms and information on how to enter at:

Also, the festival committee is looking for help in funding this 18th annual festival. YOU can donate and/or become a part of the festival by being a sponsor, a corporate sponsor, a donor, or a volunteer.
The Festival is crowdfunding at:

Friday, November 20, 2015

"Happiness" Test Screen, Director Mike Ugada 11-19-15

Houston Director Mike Ugada presented the first test-screening of his new feature drama motion picture "Happiness" Thursday Night, November 19th, 2015 at the AMC First Colony 24 in Sugar Land, Texas. 
Written by Mr. Ugada the movie follows a young woman by the name of Queen, played by Vanessa Simmons, who dreams of the perfect life, the perfect car, the perfect house and the perfect marriage.  Not happy with her current situation, she leaves a man that truly loves her. The problem is that he is struggling to make ends meet as a mechanic, can barley make it but will do anything to be with her. When he proposes to her, Queen has higher ambitions and is lured by a business man with wealth and the things that she thinks will make her happy. She marries this man and when she learns that he is having an affair, everything starts to fall apart, and happiness is just an illusion. 
The movie tells the story entirely without dialogue and focuses on the characters and the actors ability to act with facial movements and emotion, which we think was amazingly presented.  We were actually lured into the story even though there was no dialogue, it was powerful, emotional and it worked. If you missed out on catching this movie, you missed an amazing piece of work by Director Mike Ugada. This is his directorial feature movie and it was a good one. 
The movies starred Vanessa Simmons, Darrin Dewitt Henson, Leith Burke, Lorey Hayes, Christopher McDaniel, Gio Montesinos, and Damien Gerard. 
Behind the camera is cinematographer Micheal Jenkins.

Look for the review of "Happiness" in our FlixReview section of our website at: www.C47Houston.com sometime in December, 2015. 
In the meantime, Mr. Ugada invited us to see his movie and we took a few pictures. Enjoy. 


Learn more about "Happiness" on their IMDB page at:
And, see a teaser on their YouTube page at: 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

A Shy guide to networking: so you want to Network

A Shy guide to networking: so you want to Network.

Let’s set this up. You are invited to a mixer/mingle with about 50 people of whom you only know about 5 of them. As you walk into the venue, your heart starts to pump a little faster because you are just a bit insecure and experience a little social anxiety in having to meet people you don’t know. It could stem from fear, a lack of confidence, self-esteem issues, looking or sounding silly or even not having enough information. Whatever the reason is, you have a hard time meeting people. As you enter the mixer/mingle you see people that you do know and you bee-line toward them as they give you comfort and are familiar to you. Over the next few minutes and one by one, your friends start to move towards other people and you are left sitting at a table by yourself, aimlessly looking around, and feeling like you don’t belong.

In a business that centers on networking and meeting new people that are, themselves, looking for new opportunities, not being able to network, talk to people or meet new people may be preventing you from moving forward in your goals. It is imperative that you get out of your comfort zone and to feel comfortable introducing yourself to people that you have never met. You never know whom you are going to meet. This could be the person that gives you that big break you have been dreaming about for so long.

To be honest, WE experience a little social anxiety every time we go out to an event or a mixer/mingle. We are concerned about being “judged”, it’s a common human nature sort of fault. Why? Well, there are plenty of psychology books; articles, research studies, and Dr. Phil type pop psychology discussions that can lead you toward an answer that will fit your particular reason why you have problems meeting new people in any social event. But, let’s take an easy approach to this and say that we feel “uneasy” about social situations and feel even more so having to meet new people. On a basic level we are scared, plain and simple.  On a personal level, I don’t hold to the idea that someone can be without fear. It is ingrained in our DNA. Someone that claims to be fearless is fearing that he will be found to be scared or that you will find out other weaknesses.

We have picked up several books on how to meet people, how to work a room or how to overcome the uneasiness of meeting new people. The one thing that they all have in common is that they take up most of your time elaborating on the need to present yourself as a commodity and an opportunity waiting to happen. They suggest that you approach people that can help you in your career. They suggest that you only give out your business card to people that can further your status. And, they advise you to pick up their latest publication for further development.

You don’t need all that and here is why. WE have social anxieties. WE are not a people person or possess an “A” type personality. WE are introverted and shy. WE shriek at the thought of having to meet new people. When we do go to a mixer/mingle WE tend to linger on the edge where we can make our quick and silent getaway. WE have struggled with our approach to meeting someone new and with all that, we have been told that WE seem to be a “natural” at doing something that not long ago I would consider not doing at all.
But, here we are and I would like to pass along a few tips that can help you meet new people and, at the same time, make new friends or acquaintances.  What I present is not inclusive and by far the magic formula for expanding your list of contacts. However, the people you meet will remember you and appreciate your personalized approach to taking the time to meet THEM.  It does take a little guts to get out there and present yourself to strangers and it takes a little practice, on your part, to develop your skills in approaching new people. Remember, you never know whom you are going to meet and all it takes is that one person that believes in you, gives you a chance, and changes your life.

The first step in breaking that wall around you and to start meeting new people, is to take a deep breath and remember that you are not alone in feeling like you have social anxieties. Everyone has them to various degrees. Some people have learned to deal with their anxieties, they have taken the time to practice their skills, and, eventually, they have come to enjoy the prospect of meeting as many people as they can. While others are still developing their skills, they continue to confront their fears and are honing in on what works out for their particular goals. The more mixer/mingles you go to, or rather the more people you meet, the more comfortable you will be in approaching other people that you don’t know. Before you know it, you will be that person that meets everyone in the room.

(One of the most memorable events that has lingered in my mind for many years is an after party I attended by invitation in Blacksburg, Virginia where I, personally, didn’t know anyone, but my, then, girlfriend knew several people. I felt pretty awkward and absolutely out of place. But, I always feel out of place. There were about 20 to 25 people grouped in small cliques throughout the apartment. As I was looking around aimlessly and watching my girlfriend and the ease at which she talked with people, I noticed this one guy moving from group to group. What was peculiar was that he was taking the time and effort to introduce himself to every person in each particular clique. Then he would excuse himself and move to another group and do the same thing…he would introduce himself to each person in the clique. He finally made it to my side of the room and not only was he very skilled, he looked you directly into your eyes and lingered as if he was genuinely trying to know you. He possessed a firm handshake and introduced himself. We spoke for a few minutes and I was very impressed by his consideration and his people skills in taking great pains in introducing himself and making new friends. Good guy Greg.)

The next step is a little more complicated and requires an effort on your part to exit your comfort zone, take that leap of faith and approach a stranger. Remember, you are at a mixer/mingle or event where there is a common denominator and that is your key to starting up a conversation with a total stranger. All you have to do is go up to someone you don’t know, and say “Hello”.  You will be surprised at how many people will say “hello” back to you. Now, this is where it gets a little problematic. After the initial greetings, where do you go from there? One solution to staring at each other is to continue the conversation with your key common denominator - the purpose of the mixer/mingle or event.  For example: “Are you enjoying yourself?”, “How are you associated with this event?”, “What did you think about the movie?”, “What area do you work in?” and “Are you one of the filmmakers?” are good start up and “breaking the ice” questions to ask. If you notice the questions all reference the person you are addressing. Generally, people like to talk about themselves and, more importantly, they enjoy the fact that someone other than their friends or relatives are taking an interest in them and their work. Continuing with a conversation after the initial greeting requires a bit of small talk on your part. That is another skill that has to be applied and practiced when you are trying to improve or develop your people skills.  Some people have that gift of gab. They can talk endlessly about absolutely nothing, and, at the same time, they can talk about a lot of general things that they know about because they work in their specific areas. 

Most of the time you will find that the conversation will die out because the person with whom you are conversing with, is in the same position that you were just a minute ago and before you decided to exit your comfort zone, take that leap of faith and approach a stranger. You just happen to be able to approach first and initiated a conversation. YOU are one step closer to meeting new people who may be able to help you in the future or one step closer to meeting friends that you can collaborate with on a project.

Of course, this may not work all of the time. There are some people that are very difficult to talk to and they have their own motivations for interacting with others. Simply, say, “it was nice to meet you. I hope to run into you again but can you please excuse me?” This is your exit line and it is a very polite way to move on to your next total stranger.  (One word of advice… do not take it personally. There may be other reasons for their lack of interaction or they may be having a bad day.) I can not count the many times that people have been quiet and reclusive at one meeting and very outgoing and friendly at another meeting, mixer/mingle or event.

Now that you have taken that deep breath of air and understand that you are not alone in thinking that you are a social misfit, have exited your comfort zone, have taken that leap of faith, got your butt off that chair, and started a conversation with a total stranger, there is still the matter of the “little” things that you need to remember as you develop your skills in meeting new people with similar goals. While they may seem minor and not at all important in the overall goal, it is nonetheless, something that will give you “street cred” as you move forward into your life and when you network.

Your first impression is what gives you the credibility in being able to approach people who may be looking for new opportunities. It is important that you act PROFESSIONALLY and in a PROFESSIONAL manner when you meet someone for the first time. You may be the type of person that thinks that people ought to take you for who you are, but that is na├»ve and unrealistic especially in the business world. And, of course, as an actor, director or producer in a field that centers on networking and meeting new people that are, themselves, looking for new opportunities you are only as good as you appear to be. People will judge you and, let’s be honest, you are judging others.

When you meet someone for the first time and as you introduce yourself, you are going to be judged by your handshake. Your handshake should be firm. This goes for both men and to a certain extent…women. YOU would think that a handshake doesn’t matter if your talent is exceptional, but YOU are wrong. A firm handshake establishes your initial confidence. Whatever you do, don’t just put your hand out there and let someone squeeze your hand unless you feel the need to commit social suicide. Shake someone’s hand with firmness and with conviction. YOU don’t have to squeeze the hell out of someone’s hand, but you ought to match their own squeeze. As you are shaking someone’s hand and introducing yourself, be sure to always look the person you are meeting directly in the eyes. Now, we have a tendency to shift our eyes from one eye to the other, so pick an eye and look at it. I have found that most people in the field are creative and the best eye to look into is their left eye or the right eye if you are looking at them.
When shaking hands, don’t linger too long. A short burst of a handshake is all you need and will accomplish far more than you can imagine.

All of this takes a little practice on your part. Make it a point to meet someone, if not everyday, at the very least, whenever you step out into public for a meeting, a mixer/mingle or even going to grab a cup of coffee. It is absolutely true that practice makes perfect and WE are a testament to that as we have taken a cognizant effort to change ourselves and to be able to meet people. We meet a huge amount of people in our business and it is part of our job to be able to network, to mix and to mingle. Most of the people I meet are friends and while some are acquaintances they are nonetheless part of a community of people that can help you. ]
After you have decided to get up and exit your comfort zone to meet someone that you don’t know and being as professional as you can muster up, introduce yourself and follow up with a firm handshake while looking the person you are meeting squarely in the eye and start talking. 

Be sincere in getting to know the person you are meeting for the first time. Before you know it, you will be the type of person that can work a room, meet people and you will not be afraid of approaching a Steven Spielberg. Remember, all it takes if for you to start with one word…”Hello”.

Don't be Shy! 

Written by H. Luna, Producer 11-17-15 
© 2008-2015 C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine 
C47Houston WEEKLY / C47Houston Quick News 
H.L. Media Productions / www.C47Houston.com All Rights Reserved.