Now Or Never


Now Or Never

Hosts Ify Chiwetelu and Trevor Dineen leap into the action with Canadians who are making things happen. Sometimes things go right. Sometimes they go off the rails. Either way, Now or Never nudges you to make a change, big or small.

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Making the most out of failure

We all fail. There's no escaping it. But how you handle failure - and what you learn from it - can make all the difference. So this week on Now or Never, Ify Chiwetelu and guest-host Andrew Phung explore lessons in trying and failing. Long before becoming an actor, comedian, husband and father, Andrew Phung was just a guy in a Calgary nightclub failing hard at impressing a girl. Andrew sits down with his wife Tamara to relive all the fumbles from the night they first met. CHICKEEEEN! Millions of people have watched the viral clip of Eve Dubois confidently shimmying as she delivered the answer that cost her family $10,000 on Family Feud. We join her in her home in Lorette, Manitoba to find out what life is like after a viral fail. For years Steve MacLean struggled to get a grip on his substance abuse and his self worth. Two and a half years into recovery, he shares what it finally took to succeed. And find out what happens when Andrew and Ify challenge each other to redo a previous fail, sending Andrew back to high school and Ify into the deep end of a pool. 

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[mp3 file: runs 00:54:10]

How to make your workplace better

Did you know the average person will spend over 90,000 hours at work? That's over one third of your life. Depending on how you feel about your job, that time can feel like a dream... or a never-ending nightmare. So on this Now or Never, Ify and Trevor are on a mission to help make your workplace work for you.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:54:10]

The kids are alright

From climate change, to politics, to navigating identity, gender and sexuality — the youth of today are making their voices heard. So if you're writing off teenagers as a bunch of kids who are constantly on their phones, you'd be making a big mistake. On this Now or Never: hear from the teenagers of today. They'll show you that the world of tomorrow is in good hands. Meet a 15-year-old who is cracking jokes and using stand-up comedy to celebrate his identity as a gay, transgender teen. Hear from a group of Surrey, B.C., students who are dedicated to sharing the experiences of being young and black in 2020. Hit the streets with the Singh sisters, who are on a mission to feed Winnipeg's homeless. Drop in on a mental health day at a Saskatoon high school, as teenagers there grapple with a recent suicide. Grade 12 student Isaac Campeau explores how video games became an escape from, but also a reminder of, his family's struggles with poverty. Millions of youth around the world are skipping school on Fridays to fight for action on climate change. Hear from a group of Toronto teens at a recent climate march. And what does it take to be the best 14-year-old basketball player on the continent? Elijah Fisher and his parents talk about finding balance while becoming a sports superstar.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:52:15]

Holiday helpline

The holidays can be festive and fun, but let’s be honest, they're also stressful. Whether it’s struggling to find the right gift, dealing with bickering relatives, or just trying to conjure up some of that Christmas can be overwhelming. That’s why this week on Now or Never, Ify and Trevor are throwing on their Santa hats and spreading some holiday magic with the first ever Now or Never Holiday Helpline. After a very tough year, where one of them battled breast cancer and the other lost their job, Leanne and Wayne Doppler are having a hard time getting into the holiday spirit. Little do they know a “Now or Never” surprise is about to change all that. Meet Steven Hardy, who has spent so many years scrambling to find presents on Christmas Eve, that he started a support group for all the last-minute shoppers out there. After deciding that her family was going “present-less” for Christmas, Wanda Laurin received some push-back from relatives and in-laws. Not wanting to feel like a holiday Scrooge, she reaches out to the “Holiday Helpline” for advice, and just like Santa on Christmas delivers. Zameer Karim and Emily Goldsmith grew up with very different versions of a holiday dinner. In four days, they’ll be celebrating their first Christmas together as a couple AND finding out what it takes to blend traditions as their families meet for the very first time. When Wendy Onslow lost her husband three months ago, she knew the holidays were going to be hard. She's struggling to go Christmas shopping, so Ify and Trevor help her find the perfect gift for her daughter. It’s the season of giving and Brooke Eagle wants help showing her 9-year-old son what a little act of kindness will do, especially to a complete stranger.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:49:22]

Compelled to compete

Competition is all around us — from neighbours trying to out do each other's Christmas decorations, to job candidates jockeying for the same position and siblings fighting for their parents' attention. The drive to compete can be thrilling. But does competitive spirit come with a cost? On this Now or Never, we're going head-to-head with people who are doing whatever it takes to be number one. A 15-year-old Alberta cowgirl who is determined to not get bucked off as she battles to make rodeo history. A Newfoundland mom makes a rallying cry to other parents to just stop with over-the-top birthday parties. And a community in Nova Scotia so desperate to attract family doctors, it is pulling out all the stops to make sure their town comes out on top.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:54:09]

Bridging the generation gap

The holidays are almost here, which means you might soon be awkwardly interacting with multiple generations of your family under one roof. So what's the key to bridging the generation gap? On this Now or Never, meet people going outside their comfort zone to try and connect with people much older — or younger — than themselves. A Toronto comedian asks her dad, the king of dad jokes, to perform stand-up with her — and has an eye-opening moment with him on stage. A millennial finds a creative way to bridge the generation gap in her workplace. And a grunge-loving musician creates an unexpected musical mash-up with his grandpa, the unofficial polka king of southern Manitoba.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:54:10]

Think before you drink

As the holidays approach, it can be hard not to get swept up in the festive spirit and have a drink. People turn to alcohol for so many reasons: to celebrate, to unwind, to mark big occasions. But people can also drink because of peer pressure, because of loneliness, or to cover up feelings they don't want to feel. Regardless of the reason, how often have you stopped and thought about the role alcohol is playing... for you? Today on Now or Never, pull up a seat at the bar with people who are in the middle of renegotiating their relationship with alcohol.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:49:55]

Do something big with your birthday

Birthdays aren't just about marking the passage of time — they can also be an opportunity to change, to reflect, and to consider what you want from life. On this Now or Never, we're blowing out candles and slicing up cake with people who are using their birthday to do something big. Meet Pat Colborne, an 100-year-old woman who celebrated her milestone birthday by lacing up her shoes and going bowling. Being born on December 25th has meant Lauren Bosc has never been able to celebrate her birthday on the actual day — but she's determined to make this year different. Kakeka Thundersky has been a permanent ward of Manitoba's child and family services since she was 14. Drop in on her 21st birthday party, which marks the moment she's no longer in care. Not all birthdays are celebrated with smiles and streamers. For Christa Couture, they can be a yearly reminder of the children she's lost.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:54:10]

I did it for love

Despite how the sappy songs and cheesy movies make it seem, finding love and holding onto it takes work. Today on Now or Never, we're meeting people who are putting in overtime in the name of love. Trying to find a date in Whitehorse has Lori Fox going pretty far for love - literally driving hundreds of kilometres for a Tinder match. Kevin Harding is determined to learn Cantonese to better connect with his girlfriend, Alex Tse, and her family. But does he have the courage to call up her grandmother and ask her a question? After a hard break-up destroyed her confidence, Gabriella Goutam is determined to no longer let her lifelong battle with being plus-size hold her back from looking for love. Now or Never helps her get over her fears with the help of a body confidence advocate. Armed with roses and a romantic playlist, Trevor and Ify try to create romance for unsuspecting couples in a Winnipeg food court. And as Eddie Gajdel says, "any good contract should be revisited on a regular basis". Eddie and Djanka Gajdel have had three weddings in their 35 years of marriage, and are planning number four. They walk us through each of their weddings, and the ups and downs of married life, one song at a time.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:54:16]

How do you commemorate the painful moments from your past?

When you reminisce about your life, it's easy to focus on the moments of joy and happiness. Birthdays. Weddings. Anniversaries. Vacations. But what about those moments of pain, and sadness and heartbreak. What do you do with those? Do you try to forget about them? Or can those struggles and those hardships teach us a little more about who we are and how far we've come? Today on Now or Never, we're jumping in with people finding the courage to commemorate the most painful moments from their past. Katie Combaluzier's life was turned upside down in one deafening moment, when an avalanche swept her off the side of a mountain. Why she's choosing to mark the one-year anniversary by going back to the mountain - this time, in her wheelchair. A young girl honours her brother's dying wish - by taking his friendly black mutt and transforming him into a therapy dog. And a 94-year-old grandmother - who's never recovered from the death of her son, killed in the line of duty almost half a century ago - visits his memorial for the first time.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:54:09]

How to have a healthier relationship with your phone

Do you talk to Siri more than your own family? Do you find yourself mindlessly scrolling Instagram into the wee hours of the morning? Then you, my friend, may be in need of a digital detox. Today on Now or Never, we're encouraging you to find ways to have a healthier relationship with your phone. Meet a Calgary dad so desperate to reconnect with his 18-year old son, he took him to one of the most remote places in the world for a month - without their cellphones. And a guy who's vowed to break up with all 650 of his Facebook person. Plus, hosts Ify and Trevor are forced to hand over their phones and go on a city-wide scavenger hunt - can they do it without Googling?

Download How to have a healthier relationship with your phone
[mp3 file: runs 00:54:09]

What does it take to be a first responder?

Those who run toward disaster to help when everyone else is backing away are often labelled as "brave" or "strong" or "heroes". But who are the responders who are present for some of life's most dangerous and heartbreaking moments? They're not always who you think. Many responders are people who want to protect the communities they love. Hear how Ottawa's funeral workers are banding together to get serious about their mental health. Why one Haisla man is patrolling Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, searching for members of his Nation. How a small-town B.C. fire department got started with nothing but enthusiasm and a famous fire truck. And more stories of the unexpected things it takes to be a first responder.

Download What does it take to be a first responder?
[mp3 file: runs 00:54:10]

How far would you go to find affordable housing?

The hunt for affordable housing is becoming increasingly difficult in many parts of Canada - and it's a key issue in the upcoming federal election. Today on Now or Never, meet people resorting to desperate (and creative) measures to get a roof over their heads. A group of friends who decided that co-owning is their only way to crack the Toronto housing market. A woman in Tuktoyaktuk fighting to save her home from sliding into the Beaufort Sea. A university student in Kamloops who converted a delivery truck into his home. And a Vancouver family who realized the only way they could afford a home...was to leave.

Download How far would you go to find affordable housing?
[mp3 file: runs 00:54:09]

How music changed my life

The right song at the right moment can alter your mood, your energy... even your whole life. On this Now or Never, hear the surprising musical moments that change everything. An 11-year-old girl fights back against bullies after a pep talk from none other than Garth Brooks. A Halifax woman plans an unforgettable musical gift for her husband to find after her death. And how a Jay-Z song is inspiring one man to kick his drug addiction and turn his life around. It's Now or Never, the musical!

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[mp3 file: runs 00:46:54]

How to pop your social bubble

Studies have found about one in five Canadians experience loneliness or social isolation. Some experts have even argued that being lonely for long periods could be more harmful than smoking 15 cigarettes a day. That's why Now or Never is hoping to nudge you to step outside your social bubble — and meet the strangers that are all around.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:54:12]

Going All In

What does it really take to go "all in?" Today on Now or Never, meet people who are risking their life savings, their relationships, even their chase down an impossible dream. A 39-year old athlete who just quit her job and moved across the country - all for one last-ditch effort to make the Olympics. A woman determined to hike the world's most dangerous and remote trails...even though she lives with a life-threatening condition. And a cautionary tale from a Toronto couple who nearly lost everything after their dream of opening a restaurant....turned into a nightmare.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:56:23]

Living a 'double life'

We all have sides of ourselves that aren't for everyone to know. In school, you might present a completely different identity than you do at home. Whether it's to fit in, to feel safe, or to protect your secret passion, there are many reasons that people choose to keep their identities separate. On this Now or Never, you'll hear from people who are living what some might call "double lives" — and how they're managing to pull it off. A Punjabi hip-hop superstar... who's completely anonymous in his hometown of Calgary. An investigative reporter who went undercover to infiltrate a neo-Nazi group recruiting across Canada. A queer South Asian drag queen who hasn't come out to his super traditional parents — and has no plans to. And listen in as one woman grills her 70-year-old mom about pot, past loves, and the bad-ass woman she was before kids.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:59:28]

What's in a name?

We all have a name. Some are chosen for us, others we choose for ourselves. Names can influence our identity or honour our family history, but they can also be a burden that require a lifetime of explanations. So what's in a name? Turns out, a lot more than we may realize.

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[mp3 file: runs 00:55:44]