Saturday, July 9, 2011
As Kate Middleton's popularity continues to soar, a gang of enterprising hucksters have introduced a commemorative doll in her honor which is available by mail-order online - and - for a pretty penny!
The "Princess Catherine Royal Elegance Bride Doll" is an "authentic likeness" which stands 16 inches tall.
And, it's fully poseable, too (!).
The Ashton-Drake Galleries boasting that the world's finest artisans and seamstresses re-created a collectible that features the following:
* Fine bisque porcelain which has been delicately hand-painted
* A Bridal Gown carefully tailored right down to the Victorian-inspired bodice
* A floral bouquet in miniature featuring faux lilies of the Valley, Sweet William, & Myrtle
* A sparkling "diamond" halo tiara and drop earrings
Each hand-crafted doll is individually hand-numbered with a matching numbered Certificate of Authenticity which is mailed out in a Collector's Box with a special Collector's Card.
A whopping $149.99 (payable in 5 installments of $29.99 each).
Orders may be placed at www.ashtondrake.com
Can't wait to snatch one up.
How 'bout you?
If you're a dance enthusiast - especially a fan of the Joffrey Ballet - the news was devastating this past week!
Currently, stalled contract negotiations are threatening a cancellation of the much-anticipated upcoming 2011 - 2012 season.
Subsequently, the American Ballet Theatre is looking mighty good, eh?
The respected troupe is slated to perform July 14th - July 17th at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion at the celebrated Music Center in downtown Los Angeles.
"The Bright Stream is a HIT!" hailed one New York Times critic.
Kevin McKenzie is at the helm as Artistic Director.
TICKETS & INFORMATION
See 'ya there!
The Fiesta Hotel chain in Las Vegas announced that they are sponsoring a Latino parade slated to kick-off in September.
At press time the organizers boasted that the street celebration will start on 4th Street in the downtown area and end at the Fremont Experience with a soiree that is expected to stretch into the wee hours of dawn.
"It's not just for Latinos," a petite spokesperson gushed to a reporter at a local news outlet.
"The English and blacks can come to," she was quick to note, just before turning her face to the television camera to address the viewers at home.
English and blacks!
Did the Hotel employee mean English-speaking residents in general or whites who speak English as a first language?
By blacks, I expect she meant Afro-Americans, eh?
What about Asians, I wonder. Are they invited too?
'Ya know, whenever white folks slip-up and end up being politically incorrect in any particular race-relations situation, the Latino community is all over 'em like flies on shit crying foul, a lack of sensitivity, discrimination, you name it.
Now that the shoe is on the other foot, I think it only appropriate to engage in a little tit-for-tat.
A whole cast of loonie-tune characters (middle America is quite familiar with) crawled out of the woodwork this past week to toss in their expert two cents worth in respect to the controversial Casey Anthony shocker.
I spied the likes of Marcia Clark (with new "do" and fresh botox injections), Robert Shapiro (who took a break from shooting tacky television infomercials to pen his smoke-and-mirrors-style legal analysis for the Los Angeles Times), and - naturally - Geraldo Rivera (spewing his off-the-wall commentary as usual).
At one point - during a fluffy interview with a Network anchor last evening - Geraldo spat out the ridiculous (not uncommon for a fallen journalist who once treated us to a fascinating (!) gander at Al Capone's empty vault a scant few decades ago).
When quizzed about Casey Anthony's future, without-batting a tangled eye-lash (or twirling a strand or two of his bushy out-of-vogue moustache (and you thought Trump's rug was a disaster!) he quipped.
"They need to get her to a nunnery."
Well, 'ya know I LOL.
By the way, Geraldo, I think the tired old expression actually goes something like this.
"Get thee to a nunnery!"
The 3 faces of Marcia Clark!
Friday, July 8, 2011
On the heels of "kissing and making up" with Perez Hilton (the volatile twosome were at each other's throats in a nasty bitch fight for the past two years) Criss Angel debuted his spanking-new web site which focuses on all-things hokus-pokus.
According to the sexy stud with the expert slight-of-hand, fourteen programs are in development at the novel portal.
Angel also hosts a talk-show titled "Magic Jam".
Las Vegas mainstays - such as Siegfried & Roy and Lance Barton - are slated to trot out into the hot seat in the near future to the delight of their fans!
But, I have one bone to pick with Criss.
As Columbo would say:
"Just one more thing."
Mr. Angel should consider a more original catch phrase to promote his magical spectacular (ad)venture.
"This is the future and the future is now" lacks originality - don't 'ya think - folks?
Stay posted for updates!
During the course of dashing around town yesterday afternoon to catch up on chores, dark storm clouds drifted in to the desert oasis, and hinted that a nasty downpour was on the way.
So, I hot-footed it back to my Hotel suite to head for shelter.
I flopped down on the comfy bed exhausted, then slipped off into a deep slumber for an hour-or-so.
Suddenly, I awoke with a start.
As I collected my thoughts, an apparition of Caylee Anthony loomed into my consciousness.
"Mommy did it," a sad little voice faintly whispered before the ghostly image faded away into the ether.
A couple of weeks ago, I reported that Dolly Parton was slated to appear at the prestigious Hollywood Bowl at the end of July.
Fans were also excited to hear that the popular Country & Western star (who starred opposite Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda in the feature film "Nine to Five") was mulling over the idea of headlining in Las Vegas.
Caesars Palace has been quick on-the-uptake.
At press time, a spokesperson for the Las Vegas Hotel noted that Ms. Parton may be performing at their concert hall in the near future.
"Dolly Parton's show in 2004 sold out at Caesars Palace. She'd be a welcome addition to our Entertainment Family," he beamed.
I'm on my way out the door to snap up a snazzy pair of boots, chaps, and cowboy hat.
Brad Paisley - eat your heart out - eh?
Casey Anthony...stupid Jury lacked intelligence to connect dots! Circumstantial evidence grounds for murder conviction!
Understandably, there was quite a bit of in-depth court-room analysis last night, spewing out over the Network airwaves (and the blogsphere) in the wake of the shocking Casey Anthony verdict (and sentencing).
At one point, one Network trotted out Juror # 3 to shed some "light" on what was on the mind of jurors, which caused 'em to render a "not guilty" finding in respect to the felony murder charges which warranted the death penalty.
The Juror should have kept her yap shut.
After all, her misguided comments established to many that the jury was - not only lazy - but lacked the intelligence to properly adjudicate the legal issues at hand.
For example, Juror # 3 asserted that there wasn't enough evidence to convict Casey Anthony for murder, child endangerment, abusive conduct, and so-forth-and-so-on.
On the contrary!
As one legal expert noted for the record, crucial "circumstantial evidence" in this instant case established questions of guilt (not doubt).
Applicable statues, in fact, dictated that Anthony should have been convicted on at least one of the felony counts 1, 2, 3, or 4.
The experienced trial lawyer was also quick to add that the jurors in question were definitely ignorant about the role the Judge is supposed to play in respect to deliberation and the proceedings in general.
In this instant case, the Jury was so stupid that they failed to recognize that there were resources at their disposal to resolve the legal dilemmas that were challenging them in the jury room behind closed doors, if they would only reach out and ask the court for assistance.
For instance, the Jurors admitted in the aftermath that there were many questions that were left unanswered.
But, astoundingly, not one of the jurors ever sought clarification - or even guidance - from the Judge (in spite of the fact he was there to be at their beck-and-call to help resolve problems of this nature).
"Their job was to connect the dots. But, they failed to do that," one critic lamented in disgust.
In retrospect, the jurors were either too lazy to make the effort, or lacked the overall intelligence to recognize their legal obligations in the matter.
Because the twelve losers didn't have the answer as to how she died, they literally threw the baby out with the bathwater!
In view of the facts, and the circumstantial evidence (the lies, the failure to report her child was missing for until thirty-one days, the duck tape) Casey Anthony should have been found guilty of at least one of the first four felony counts.
Contrary to what pundits - and lawyers are spouting off on their pulpits today - the legal system did not work.
In respect to Caylee Anthony - justice was not only not served - but blind!
The smug look of a murderer?
Although the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge toured Canada over a nine-to-ten-day period at a relatively leisurely pace, according to handlers, the schedule for the trip to California is pretty tight.
"The tour has been more like a military-operation. Everything is accounted for down to the last second," according to one Royal insider.
Another was a bit more ballsy in their assessment of what will be going down in the Golden State this weekend.
"I think the LAPD wants to justify their existence by acting as though this is the second coming of Posh and David Beckham," another mused.
The clandestine goings-on behind-the-scenes does beg the question.
Have their been terrorist threats against the young newlyweds?
Just betcha, Law Enforcement Officials are concealing something from the public!
Notwithstanding, Prince William and his pretty wife are slated to be tossed into a whirlwind of all-encompassing activities - social, charitable, even somewhat political - as they catch the tail of the a fabulous comet.
Today, the lovebirds jet into Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), where they will be greeted by Governor Jerry Brown with the British Ambassador in tow.
A reception follows in Hancock Park - an upscale enclave - where President Obama's motorcade caused quite a few headaches and a few traffic jams when he trotted into town last year.
On Saturday (July 9th) the Royals descend on Carpeteria where the Duke will participate in a Polo Match for charity at the prestigious Santa Barbara Polo and Racquet Club.
At the Belasco Theater - Wills & Kate put in a glittering appearance at the much-anticipated - "BAFTA Brits to Watch" celebration also.
On Sunday (July 10th) Tusk USA hosts a private event in honor of the Duke and Duchess as well.
At Inner-City Arts, Prince William & Kate will pledge their support for an outreach program for children on skid-row.
Undoubtedly, the highlight of the 3-day tour kicks off on Sunday evening, when the Royals will be toasted by Hollywood luminaries and power-brokers at Sony Studios in Culver City.
If fans of the handsome Royals are quick on-their-feet, they just might land a perch in their midst, and pull off a coup (of sorts).
A photo op, of course!
Good luck, eh?
Thursday, July 7, 2011
I strolled in to the Mirage on the 4th of July, slipped onto a comfy stool, and proceeded to feed a handful of bills into the slot machine.
Now, I pined for a cool - thirst-quenching - refreshing cocktail!
Unfortunately, the waitress returned from the bar at the end of the Casino to inform me that the machine that prepared the frothy base for the daiquiris was on-the-outs (broken!).
So, I strode out the front door and trotted down to the Aria Hotel at the spanking-new City Center.
Within minutes, the pretty cocktail waitress plopped down an exotic-looking strawberry daiquiri in front of me, decorated to-the-hilt with delicious whipped cream and a huge succulent strawberry crowning it.
Undoubtedly, the drinkie-pooh was the best I've ever slurped down in the desert oasis to date!
But, the delightful treats awaited me elsewhere, too.
At the chic little Skybox cafe on the Casino floor, I indulged myself further with a scrumptious piece of Boston Cream Pie (it's cake, actually).
The truth of the matter?
The chef whipped up a pastry that was so aesthetically-pleasing to gaze upon, that it was almost a shame to wolf it down, for starters.
Indeed, the wedge of chocolate - with the name of ARIA etched in fudge on its face - was worth framing (for posterity's sake?) after all.
For $6.00 - who could ask for more?
If you saunter in for a snack, tell 'em Julian sent 'ya, eh?
Skybox offerings at Aria Hotel
In recent days, immigrants from around the globe have been flooding the country; consequently, a handful of our American customs are at risk - could very well fall by-the-wayside - if the citizenry does not stand up and take action to preserve the status quo.
For example, when a U.S. resident strolls up to the cashier at a business establishment, they have a reasonable expectation that their groceries (and other precious goods) will be carefully packed into an appropriate bag so they may be toted all-the-way home without difficulty.
Now-a-days, when a shopper pays the bill - instead of grabbing for a bag - the counter-person is more inclined to linger for a moment or simply look away before awkwardly cutting to the chase.
"Do you want a bag," they finally snipe at the customer, as they wrinkle up their nose in distaste.
At this juncture, I am inclined to respond with a knee-jerk reaction, for starters.
"If you can afford one, please!"
Gosh, I sure hope that was a slap in the face.
In some primitive cultures, the natives simply balance the fruits and vegetables on their heads - or in the alternative - tuck 'em in the hem of their skirt (I guess!).
But, in America, we tend to be a tad more sophisticated than that!
There is a pratical reason for providing a bag, too.
If a customer waltzes out the door with purchase in hand, some overzealous security guard with shit for brains may mistakenly surmise that the individual is guilty of a five-finger discount!
If these grocers can't afford to provide a bag up-front (without questions asked) they shouldn't be in the business of providing goods and services.
You know what they say.
Penny wise. Pound foolish.
Then, I'll pass on patronizing your store, too.
Walgreens & 99 cent store worst offenders!
If you caught the sentencing hearing for Casey Anthony bright-and-early this morning, it should have been obvious (as it was to moi!) that a defense lawyer for the accused attempted to pull a fast one on the Judge.
But, the old coot was sharp and wasn't fooled by the deceitful ploy!
For example, at the last-minute a wimpy female lawyer approached the podium to request that a "motion" - to consider misdemeanor counts 4, 5, 6, and 7 as one sole count - be granted by the Court.
The legal eagle argued that there was no "pause for reflection" when each statement was made to Police Officers - and thus - amounted to one continuing "lie" - and not - "four distinct separate falsehoods" as alleged by the prosecution.
In sum, counsel took the position that a failure to recognize the niggling point, may result in legal error on the grounds of "double-jeopardy".
The fact that the defense neglected to deliver the "motion" into the hands of the Judge prior to the sentencing hearing for a proper review was highly suspect (in my estimation).
In fact, at one point, the Judge interrupted the lawyer and cut to the chase.
"I don't have a copy of that motion."
The shrinking violets's response spoke volumes!
"I handed it to the clerk. I'm sorry, I forgot to ask that it be given to you."
If 'ya ask me, it was an intentional maneuver on the part of the defense counsel to gain the upper hand.
Fortunately, the intelligent Judge took a moment to secure the documents in question, review the facts, and allegations, and applicable case law before he proceeded.
Nice try, counsel!
In the end, the Judge noted that like the rulings pertaining to Count 1, Count 2, and Count 3 - the Jury was also crystal clear - about their findings in respect to Count 4, 5, 6, and 7.
If you read between the lines, it is evident that the deceitful conduct of the defense lawyers backfired!
Notwithstanding, in view of the outrage that swept the country in the wake of the verdict yesterday, I just betcha the Judge's decision to give the maximum sentence for each count was - not only a way to appease the American people - but also pave the way for a "cooling off" period so folks could settle down emotionally.
By the way, Anthony was sentenced to 1 year in jail for each count (for a total of four years) and a $1,000.00 fine for each offense.
When credit for time served was applied, it was determined that Casey Anthony should be released on-or-about July 13th (if she survives in jail, that is).
Baby killers and rapists are often the victims of mysterious deaths while incarcerated, after all!
May God forgive you, Casey Anthony, for your heinous crimes.
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
"Family Jewels", the reality show, shifted gears last night - at which point - a flood of erratic emotions pulled the carpet out-from-under Rocker Gene Simmons.
After twenty-seven years of being lovey-dovey - and raising two darling kids - Shannon Tweed (a twitter pal) stormed out on her once-smug bed-mate with the crinkly "do".
"I'm going to a Hotel," Shannon managed to utter up, before she slipped out the door of the sumptuous mansion in a bit of a daze.
What triggered the split?
The groupies, according to Ms. Tweed, a former playboy model.
"He's obviously still trying to prove something. But, when will it end," she wondered to her sister, who took her in a scant few hours later when the startling news spread like wildfire in their circle of family and friends.
At one point, the pretty blond fessed up about her worst fears.
"I don't want to be replaced by a younger version of myself," she lamented.
Her children - and a sister - reacted angrily to the musician's selfish immature behavior by the way.
"Why don't you go to a Hotel," Tweed's sibling hissed at Simmons when she strode by him in the hall on her way to pack up a handful of Shannon's personal belongings.
"You suck right now," she angrily spouted off, almost as an afterthought, in he aftermath.
Cut to Gene Simmons down-in-the-dumps and face-to-face with his therapist solemnly discussing the sad unexpected turn-of-events.
"I hate losing control," he confided in the cool-headed blond guiding him through the emotional process.
"I guess because I am a big Rock Star - and rich - that I don't like to have to check in with anyone," he admitted at-long-last.
"Deep down, I know it is all nonsense."
The showdown with Shannon triggered deep-rooted fears and awful truths about himself.
Talk about a dark night of the soul!
"I need her," he finally acknowledged. But, it's difficult to admit."
His son, Nick, was also pissed with him for allowing the situation to escalate.
"You always called us up on things," he reminded Gene.
"Dad, if some guy hurt your mother, what should you do?"
"Confront the guy," Gene shot back.
"Something to think about," Nick mused, as he strode off to leave Simmons to mull over the dilemma.
In the end, Nick orchestrated an outing at a jazz bar, with the ultimate aim of hooking his parents up on the sly at the Nightclub.
What a manipulator, eh?
Once Gene caught sight of Shannon alone across the packed house, he sulked for a moment, then took charge of the situation.
The aging Lothario strode over to Shannon to make peace, you betcha!
In minutes, the lovebirds were hugging and making up?
Well, so Gene thought.
Until, the stilted couple returned to estate, where Shannon proceeded to trot upstairs.
"Where are you going," he quizzed.
"Upstairs to pack."
Without hesitation, Gene took her hand and pulled her into his loving arms.
"I built this home for you and the kids. You're going to stay here forever."
A bit cliche, I know.
And - most certainly - mushy!
The truth of the matter?
Most couples have to make a decision about the road they're going to travel - either with their chosen significant other - or alone in the alternative.
When the therapist asked Gene what he would do to get Shannon back, he replied in two words.
Well, I guess their future as a couple hinges on that one word, eh?
Once Gene recognizes that refusing to give up his tom-catting (and groupies) may end his precious relationship, he'll have to decide which is more important.
Is it his freedom or a loving nurturing relationship?
If I interpreted the signals right, at 61, Gene Simmons is about to finally grow up.
Otherwise, the over-the-hill rock star, may end up like Hugh Hefner.
Don't 'ya think?
News at 11!
In the wake of the potent puffs of smoke trailing in the aftermath of the spectacular fireworks display at Caesars Palace on July 3rd, shocked onlookers edged closer to the curb to get an up-close gander at a shake-down that was underway by the local police.
For some unknown reason, two gruff uniformed cops were spied smacking a middle-aged-man down onto the squad car with little mercy.
In fact, when the emotionally-distraught pedestrian protested about the abusive conduct, one officer proceeded to push his face into the trunk of the vehicle, while his partner ratcheted-up the handcuffs so tightly that the suspect cried out in pain.
A twenty-something dude standing next to me on the bustling city walk flipped open his video-camera and started to film the outrageous conduct of the rogue police officers.
"Excessive force, eh?" I quipped.
The solemn tourist half-turned and nodded in the affirmative.
"Police brutality, if 'ya ask me," I added quickly on the uptake.
When I asked if he intended to upload the video footage to a social hub on the Internet, he confirmed that was his intention, you betcha.
Because there was a camera-crew filming nearby as well, a number of the tourists wondered aloud if perhaps the scene was being recorded for the TV Show "cops".
Either way, the hateful - unprofessional conduct of the Las Vegas Police Department staff - is bound to end up in the glare of the spotlight in the near future to haunt 'em.
In retrospect, I expect that folks in the community-at-large are going to be inclined to question eleven deaths over the past year, which residents suffered at the hands of cops who swore up-and-down that the murders occured during the course of self-defense.
If 'ya ask me, they've got some 'splainin' to do!
News at 11!
I was just in the throes of penning a post on Florence Henderson's tacky behaviour lately, when a customer in 711 at the check-out counter nexto to moi did a double-take in my direction, and uttered up an observation.
"You look a bit like the Dad on the Brady Bunch," she giggled.
I reacted by noting that I crossed paths with Robert Reed years ago.
But, there was another connection (of sorts), as well.
An acquaintance of mine (a male escort) confided in me once that he played-for-pay with Reed (who was a closet-case throughout the duration of his long illustrious acting career).
"He tipped well, too," the studly hustler bragged in a druken stupor one dark night of the soul.
"Mr. Reed noted that he paid well to guarantee his privacy," he continued.
"Did you reveal his secret," I asked out of curiosity.
"I only discussed it with the other guys in the trade," he asserted proudly.
Male prostitutes have ethics, too, 'ya know?
Curiously, I was invited on to the set of one of "The Brady Bunch" reunion shows a short while after Reed's sexual proclivities were secretly disclosed to me.
Mr. Reed cruised me from across the set, but stopped short of making a pass on the sound stage.
As industry-insiders are well aware (and as fans learned later after his death) Reed was quite professional - circumspect, in fact - in that regard.
He'd never pursue sex in a work settting or even temp fate (for starters).
In contrast, I found Florence Henderson to be loose and classless.
In fact, on the set it was evident to me that she was not only a selfish person - who went after what she wanted at any cost (even at other people's expense) - but also an ego-maniac.
Needless to say, I wasn't surprised when Ms. Henderson recently tattled that Mayor Lindsay once infected her with "crabs".
It wouldn't surprise me if she hatched up the scheme (the revelation, allegations, etc.) in order to boost sales when the fluff is shipped to be stocked on the shelves later this year.
News at 11!
With a lot of fanfare - and fresh off a well-received tour in Canada - the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are slated to touch down in the Golden State at the end of the week.
The Royal handlers have fessed up that the handsome couple are expected to hunker down at the ultra-chic Beverly Hills Hotel (known to locals as the "Pink Palace") on Sunset Boulevard.
Will the lovebirds select a secluded cottage to feather their nest for the three-day jaunt or spring for a sumptuous suite with a spectacular view of the picturesque upscale climbs of 90210 (and Bel Air beyond in the distance)?
One legendary film director - an eccentric multi-millionaire by the name of Howard Hughes - once kicked off his expensive loafers there and summarily proceeded to order up juicy hamburgers at whim 'til the cows (usually of the pretty starlet variety) came home!
Old violet eyes - Elizabeth Taylor - played with imaginary friends on the prestigious grounds in her youth while her father flogged paintings in the respected gallery he operated on the first floor.
Fans of pop star George Michael - of "Wham" fame - also got busted across the street in the mens bathroom at the well-manicured neighborhood park during an undercover sting.
The delicous scandal shocked the world at the height of his flourishing musical career.
The Polo Lounge is still a popular watering hole for Tinseltown's power-players out to land fame and fortune in the fickle realm of filmdom.
The inside scoop?
David and Victoria Beckham - long-time friends of the well-liked Royals - are expected to trot 'em 'round town to the delight of the chic elite anxious to curry favor with the future King of England!
In recent days, it has been widely reported that Kate Middleton tossed together the fabulous outfits she wowed fans with in Canada - and hence - it was speculated that she can manage on her own when it comes to fashion sensibilties (thank you very much!).
Fashionistas - and Royal Watchers, too - are predicting that Victoria may subtly offer up a style tip or two (maybe even gift the pretty newlywed with a designer frock?).
Meanwhile, Polo enthusiasts are excited about attending a match in Santa Monica in which the Prince will participate.
Lovely Kate has been bestowed with the honor of presenting the trophy to the winners.
A highlight of the tour unfolds when Wills & Kate trek off to one of the major film production studios to mix-and-mingle with a posse of celebrated Hollywood creative types.
When John Travolta was asked if he would jump at the chance to stage a publicity still - like the one he was featured in for posterity's sake with Lady Diana years ago - he nodded in the affirmative.
But, is the Duchess a fan of the Saturday Night Fever star?
News at 11!
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
On the 4th of July I happened across a disabled man (disoriented and a bit confused) in a wheelchair in the sizzling-hot mid-day sun in dire need of assistance.
Meanwhile - about forty feet away - I spied six bicycle cops (I counted them) in their black- and-yellow hornet monkey-suits standing around telling jokes to each other (and picking their asses) while on duty at the expense of local taxpayers.
Do 'ya think they noticed the crippled man crying out for help or offered any assistance?
Are these the same disgruntled cops who griped over the past several weeks that they have an insufficient number of officers on the street to serve and protect the community-at-large?
What a gang of lay-about losers!
I say, hand 'em all a pink slip and let 'em jerk off on their own time at home!
An old truism came to mind when I caught these lazy bums on the street neglecting their duties on the heels of protesting high-and-low that they were overworked and underpaid and didn't deserve lay-offs.
What is a synonym for a Police Officer?
A professional liar!
This post was inspired by a hilarious encounter with a tourist on the Vegas strip this morning at the crack-of-dawn.
As I stood at the corner next to a couple of pedestrians at a light waiting to cross the street - for some inexplicable reason (a gulp of a soda earlier?) - I was unable to stifle a slight belch.
The burp wasn't loud mind you!
In fact, I cupped my hand over my face when I felt the rude noise coming on, in a bold-faced effort to muffle the embarrassing eruption as much as possible.
Due to my upbringing, I felt obligated (good manners required it, after all) to politely utter up a "excuse me" for the benefit of the strangers next to me.
The gentleman suddenly turned in my direction to respond.
"Oh," I responded quickly on the uptake.
"I just burped, so I was excusing myself."
We both laughed instinctively.
The amusing scenario that went down was a laugh riot after all.
"Where I come from," the middle-aged man whispered, "A person says 'excuse me' if they want to ask a stranger on the street for directions and that sort-of-thing."
Obviously, the man came from good breeding was taught good manners by his parents.
Unless he went to finishing school, of course!
Crossing paths with this delightful individual (lucky for me he wasn't some a-hole like most you bump into at the local library or on the Vegas strip) ended up begging the question.
What is the proper etiquette to undertake when approaching a stranger in public?
For starters, a well-mannered person with class utters up the aforementioned helpful phrase to get the ball rolling smoothly.
Don't just dash up unannounced and invade the pedestrian's "space" - or they may think you're about to bang 'em on the hand - and make off with their wallet or diamond-studded wristwatch.
Or, they'll be expecting 'ya to pester 'em for spare change in the alternative.
And, when you get ready to depart, don't forget to thank the person warmly his or her kindness.
If you follow these rules, I expect the exchange will be a fruitful one, and that your karma on this earthly plane will increase tenfold.
I caught sight of Justin's latest fashion misstep over the weekend.
Heh Bieb, what were 'ya thinking?
Honestly, a plain white tux (or was that a two-piece white suit?) paired with a lone over-sized bow tie (it looked like a snap-on to moi!) just doesn't cut it with the elite fashionistas.
Justin, surely there is a tad more passion (and flair for fashion) lurking in your heart of hearts?
A string bow-tie would have been a more distinctive accessory choice for the swaggering handsome man-about-town.
For a dash of romance a red rose in the lapel would have rustled up a nod from the fashion police, too.
In the alternative?
An elegant pocket handkerchief - puffed-up inside the breast pocket - just so!
Never wear both, eh?
Isn't it time you also sported a quality timepiece on your studly wrist as well?
That's what separates the men from the boys, Justin.
How's Selena, by the way?
It's style - not the clothes - that make the man!
Macy's 4th of July Fireworks Special...Brad Paisley a stand-out! Poor Direction! Beyonce's bad-hair day!
For the most part, the Macy's 4th of July Fireworks special last night on NBC was solid entertainment.
In particular, Country & Western Star - Brad Paisley - was a stand-out in a performance that left audiences crying out for an encore!
The kid was charismatic and exuded a good-time quality that resonated with fans below the footlights, too.
Unfortunately, Beyonce was having a "bad hair" day and it was downright distracting.
The frazzled "do" (did she fall asleep under the hair-dryer or what?) was replete with tacky dark roots and dry wispy fly-away ends that took flight this-way-and-that whenever the wind whipped across the stage (which was often).
On the other hand, the chanteuse wisely elected to don a chic understated designer gown, which she aaccessorized tastefully with a stunning necklace - that ultimately - flattered her long graceful neck.
One tune was surprisingly just so-so!
But, the Pop Diva's high-energy performance managed to prevent the entire set from fizzling out before our very eyes, in spite of the odds against it.
No problem there in respect to the spectacular pyrotechnics which were literally dazzling in scope.
The musical arrangements laid-in beneath the stunning visuals triggered a stream of consciousness - for me, anyway -which couldn't help but usher up a flood of emotions (patriotic ones, for starters) and reflection.
Unfortunately, the production values were spotty.
Pedestrian direction (and poor camera-work) diminished the special event to amateurish proportions on occasion.
For example, when Nick Lachey (the host for the evening's festivities) attempted to introduce the broadcast at the top of the show, his voice was drowned out by a spirited gang of guests at his side who squealed with delight as soon as the director called "action" from behind the NBC camera.
A seasoned pro would have anticipated the obvious.
For good reason, the director should have instructed the attendees to remain on the sidelines silently until Mr. Lachey delivered up his intro without interruption, and for the benefit of the viewing audience at home.
A raucous cheer at the end of Lachey's show-opener would have been the professional way to go!
Sadly, the niggling dilemma continued throughout the broadcast and was annoying as heck.
I was also surprised that the musical director failed to issue a note to the performer who elected to go into "uncharted waters" in respect to the rather uneven rendition of "Amazing Grace".
To me, the artistic choices were so jarring, that they reminded me of the irritating sounds fingernails dredge up on a blackboard.
In spite of the shortcomings, Paisley came up smelling roses with a 4-star performance.
The role of the Master
is to awaken
with a cosmic
Collection of Poems
Monday, July 4, 2011
A handful of Americas will probably be stocking the kitchen, counting their blessings, and hunkering down in the family living-room for an old-fashioned "Independence Day" celebration at home on the 4th of July.
In that event, armchair enthusiasts are bound to flip on the television and catch the much-anticipated - "Gift of Freedom" broadcast - featuring a live performance by Beyonce.
During a highlight, the traditional Macy's celebration will feature a dazzling display of fireworks to be set off on 5 tugboats on the Hudson River tonight.
Nick Lachey hosts.
Elsewhere, there are other holiday specials worth taking a gander at, too.
On PBS, Matthew Morrison (GLEE) will perform in "A Capitol Fourth".
In addition to Morrison, there will be performances by Steve Martin (Steep Canyon Rangers), Josh Groban, and Little Richard.
The National Symphony Orchestra will close with a rendition of Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture".
Over at CBS, Michael Chiklis will host the "Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular".