Saturday, August 13, 2011
Hollywood insiders are reporting that Renee Zellweger signed a pact to reprise her quirky role in the much-anticipated third installment of the "Bridget Jones Diaries" franchise series.
In addition to showcasing Ms. Zellweger's considerable acting talents over the years (the perky star was nominated for an Oscar for the role) megastars like Colin Firth and Hugh Grant also ended up reaping rewards from the fabulously-successful flicks which struck gold at the box office (and won over the hearts of film buffs all over the face of the globe).
The well-crafted scripted material was based on the highly-regarded musings of celebrated author Helen Fielding (who is busy penning the next diary as I prepare to publish this post).
But, there may be a fly in the ointment somewhere down the line in the filming stage.
Handlers in -the-know have been whispering that Ms. Zellweger has been quite adamant that she will not put on weight to portray the character this-time-out.
I guess when it comes to flab, it is not always "easy come and easy go", eh?
Smart cookie, if she can pull it off!
"I had a panic attack with all the specialists talking about how bad this is for you long-term, putting on that much weight in short periods of time," she offered up in her defense at a recent press junket.
Zellweger may slip into a "fat suit" instead for the upcoming film according to insiders.
Well, I guess it's a no-go on any naughty shots of Ms. Zellweger in the naked flesh, eh?
Hugh Grant and Colin Firth may return to flesh-out their characters once again, but there is no confirmation at press time.
"I can tell you that Bridget and Mark can't have children, I think that's the way it goes on. So then she makes the huge mistake of going back to Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant) for long enough to get pregnant. And, I think he dumps her, and she's left stranded, and guess who comes back to rescue her?" Firth allegedly revealed to one probing reporter out to nab a scoop.
Much of the same old same old!
But, it will still be delicious entertainment, just betcha!
Ecstatic reports about Michele Bachmann's win in the Iowa Straw Poll are spewing out all over the Internet, are being pumped out and splashed across the front pages of dailies around the country, and have been positioned as headlining stories at media outlets on all the major networks in spite of the fact the pushy upstart from nowhere took the poll by a slim margin today.
The Presidential hopeful beat out Ron Paul by a paltry one percent.
In real numbers, Bachmann garnered approximately 28,000 votes while Paul lagged behind at 150 or so less votes of confidence from Iowans.
It is obvious at this juncture that Michele Bachmann (a controversial candidate) is not going to nab the Presidency in the upcoming election next year.
It's a toss up between Mitt Romney and Rick Perry in my estimation.
God Bless America!
The Presidential hopeful beat out Ron Paul by a paltry one percent.
In real numbers, Bachmann garnered approximately 28,000 votes while Paul lagged behind at 150 or so less votes of confidence from Iowans.
It is obvious at this juncture that Michele Bachmann (a controversial candidate) is not going to nab the Presidency in the upcoming election next year.
It's a toss up between Mitt Romney and Rick Perry in my estimation.
God Bless America!
One day a fourteen-year-old boy toted a concealed weapon to school, and proceeded to shoot a fellow student dead, with two bullets to the head.
According to news report, the troubled youth was offended when the classmate casually referred to him as "baby" the day before.
"I was afraid he was going to put the moves on me," he uttered up to the authorities when they hauled him away to the detention hall.
Legal analysts are now referring to the excuse as the "Gay Panic Defense".
"It's a ludicrous argument," one irate lawyer protested in so many word on one high-rated broadcast-news show.
"If a male approached a female - and called her "baby" - would she be entitled to dash home, load a pistol, and snuff out his life, " the legal eagle elaborated to drive home the point.
Frankly, I found it ironic that the lad in question found a need to react as violently, as he did.
I recall that when I was a kid playing in the schoolyard, boys who were perceived as "homos", were usually gangly weaklings, sissies, and wimps.
What self-respecting macho male would be fearful of a such a "pansy"?
It sounds to like the so-called "straight" boy has issues and is somewhat confused about his own sexuality.
Gosh, I shouldn't have said that, eh?
He'll come gunning for me next!
I recall a rhyme we used to chant in the schoolyard when I was a youth residing in Toronto.
"Sticks and stones may break my bones but names can never harm me!"
Boy, how the times have changed.
It's a sad commentary on life in America today isn't it?
Un-Christian-like behavior prevails in America!
Herb Ritts...Getty Museum coughs up $1 Million for Pop Photographer's Collection! Richard Gere portrait insightful!
On the heels of snatching up a collection of starkly-beautiful black-and-white photographs by Herb Ritts, the Getty announced that a retrospective of the Pop Fashion Photographer's work is slated to be installed at the prestigious gallery in April (2012).
The acquisition (which rustled up a cool million for the Ritt's Foundation) included a handful of high-styled portraits which put an insightful spotlight on actor friends such as Richard Gere.
Ritts, who passed to spirit in 2004, was a successful in-demand photographer who carved a distinctive niche for himself in the highly-competitive commercial realms of high fashion where slick advertisers craved his scintillating unique images (oft-ignored by the Museum circuit who may have pooh-poohed his offerings for obvious elitist reasons).
For the Getty and the associate director Paul Martineau of the facility (who negotiated the deal in one fell swoop) it turned out to be quite a coup.
After all, the Ritts collection is the perfect body of work to round out a house collection that was wanting in many respects 'til now.
Notwithstanding, Martineau expects that the time is ripe to educate gallery patrons - and the public-at-large - as well.
"The compositions are so strong and simple that sometimes people think they're facile, but that's not the case," he underscored, when commenting on the relevance of the images in a historical context.
Before his untimely death, I often spotted Mr. Ritts in Starbucks in West Hollywood - sipping on a steaming-hot beverage - as he surreptitiously glanced at the multitude of faces that surrounded him here-there-and-everywhere in the cozy cafe.
Undoubtedly, each and every one fascinated (inspired?) the artistic genius with the exceptional eye.
Speaking of eyes!
On one occasion, when he turned in my direction, ours met.
The earth appeared to stand still for a moment before we both looked away.
Two ships passed silently in the night.
Peace - perfect peace - Herb.
Hugh Hefner may have been jilted at the altar, but the Playboy King - known for his self-indulgent hedonistic lifestyle - isn't moping about the Mansion crying-the-blues.
In fact, in spite of a nasty put-down recently about his alleged non-existent skills at foreplay and lovemaking in general (think 30 seconds or less) by a notorious scheming gold-digger (in the guise of a bodacious blond bimbo who eventually sashayed off with a pricey engagement ring and a top-of-the-line luxury vehicle) Hef has remained in high spirits and still game for the seductive party circuit!
Today, in fact, the original "Goddess Master" (Charlie Sheen eat your heart out!) is expected to trot over to the Palms Pool where the annual "Midsummer Night's Dream" extravaganza (Playboy-style) kicks off amidst a lot of hoopla!
The festive event - a smorgasbord of delights actually - will be populated by a bevy of busty beauties and PJ-clad Lotharios - out to party-hearty throughout the day - in a carnival-like atmosphere that is slated to feature a troupe of talented performance artists (and wandering minstrels) costumed as mythical characters.
Party-crashes are sure to spy a host of - fairies, magicians, exotic water creatures - if they manage to maneuver their way through the high-security gates.
The music - by celebrated DJ Pauly D (Jersey Shore) - is expected to be quite eclectic.
See 'ya there!
The Bachelor's Lair!
Jesse Eisenberg has been making the rounds of the talk-show circuit to promote his just-released dark comedy "30 Minutes or Less".
Eisenberg has nothing to be ashamed about in what amounts to a star-turn for the talented young actor.
The charismatic hottie of last year's pot-boiler - "The Social Network" - has fleshed out a lovable engaging character in an authentic performance that speaks volumes about the young man and his dedication to his craft.
And, that face!
Well, it mesmerizes, and - at times - literally takes the breath away.
Every expression that ripples across it - whether it be a quirky grimace or blank-eyed stare - is a joy to behold as it bubbles up "spontaneously" from beneath the surface and impacts the audience below the footlights.
Unfortunately, the fast-paced adrenalin-rush-of-a-film is uneven and flawed in many respects.
When the credits roll at the top of the big-budget feature a nod to producer Ben Stiller should be a tip-off to astute film buffs.
Undoubtedly, the scripted plot is bound to be padded with a heavy dose (!) of blue material, low-brow toilet humor, juvenile sight-gags, and what-have-you.
That's Stiller's stock in trade, after all.
In this instant case, the creative team went over-the-top once-too-often - and subsequently - the sloppy filmmaking dragged the project down.
For example, a few mean-spirited - highly-inflammatory jabs at stereotypes ("beans", "fags", "bitches") - were inclined to trigger stunned silence and not the anticipated guffaws.
Some of the dialogue is too graphic (and unnecessary in my estimation).
I found a joke about HIV and the killer virus particularly distasteful.
At one point, when the main character (played by Eisenberg) approaches his vehicle (a beat-up old mustang which is a sight for sorry eyes) his best friend (who plays a teacher surprisingly) takes a poke at his run-down set-of-wheels.
"It looks like you bought your Mustang and then it caught A.I.D.S."
In a word?
A word to the producers:
Jokes about HIV and the advanced stages of the deadly disease will never be (nor should they ever be) a laughing matter!
At this juncture, I heartily suggest that the studio donate a percentage of the profits of the film to an A.I.D.S. Organization (once the balance sheets are tallied) to compensate the sick and the dying for their thoughtless mean-spirited comments which perpetuate negative images about a global epidemic that has reaching alarming epic proportions.
Attempts by the director (Zombieland) to blend violence with comedy for dramatic failed miserably, too.
Tarantino doesn't have to look over his shoulder, that's for sure!
Without a master at the helm, the attempts at dark comedy faltered (embarrassingly so) - and ultimately - ended up jarring filmgoers sensibilities in fact.
However, that aside, I would be remiss if I did not report that there is a lot of rollicking good humor in the flick (thus confirming that the low-blow tasteless material wasn't necessary to sell tickets at the box office) and that - for the most part - "30 Minutes or Less" is quite an entertaining popcorn film worth checking out.
It's a dark comedy - with wicked twists and turns - that will keep you roaring on the edge of your seat (once you edit out the boring parts as Alfred Hitchcock would drolly quip in his eerily queer way) for about an hour-and-a-half.
"30 Seconds or Less" is a great way to duck the sizzling hot heat wave in the afternoon.
But, in view of the raunchy one-liners, may not be appropriate on date night.
2 1/2 Stars!
See 'ya at the movies, eh?
Friday, August 12, 2011
When times are tough the sentimental get nostalgic for fuzzy memories from the past when life seemed so much sweeter!
For my generation, the 80's was an era that was particularly carefree and liberating, so it was no surprise to flip open the newspaper at the crack-of-dawn this morning and stumble across a blurb - touting a "Summer Tour" of Musical Artists from yesteryear's "Lost 80's" - that savvy promoters tossed together on-the-fly.
Boy, that got that one right, eh?
Can you remember where you were in those heady days?
Toss on a splashy outfit, slip on your pretty dancing shoes, and head on down to Mandalay Bay and catch the sizzling-hot live stage gigs featuring "A Flock of Seagulls", "The Motels", "Dramarama", "Boys Don't Cry", and a posse of other quirky acts from that golden anything-goes era.
See 'ya there!
Guests must be 21 years old!
When a gang of roving paparazzi ambushed Justin Bieber in a parking lot this past week, a lot of hoopla erupted over a pair of neon-pink tennis shoes the Pop Star was sporting as he dashed about the city catching up on chores.
The tabloid press heckled the peacock look!
Frankly, I gave a big thumbs up to the "Bieb" for boldly going where few studly dudes have dared tom-cat before!
Heh, the kid's got balls, no doubt about it.
Only a confident man-about-town would take such a fashion risk!
Meanwhile, elsewhere on the Internet, some jokester with a wicked sense of humor was plotting a hilarious "coming out" scenario for the unsuspecting teen idol.
When I spied the mock album cover of Justin in a pink dress pictured above I cracked up.
I expect that Justin will take it all in his stride as usual.
Actually, it was a tough week for Mr. Bieber.
For example, a gaggle of mean-spirited flight personnel (stews) lamented that the "Bieb" was a "brat" which triggered a tidal-wave of publicity (mixed) around the globe.
Allegedly, the pint-sized superstar turned down a request to pose with the pilot of an airliner he was a passenger on, so the aging Ice Queens took their revenge.
After screening the flick "Airplane" - just maybe - Bieber was wise to the fact that if he accepted such an invitation he might end up being molested in the - um - cockpit?
I applaud Bieber's refusal to be led around by the nose, by the way.
The kid is not a circus act, after all!
Amidst a flurry of gay rumors, I expect the same loose cannons in the hysterical press will be reporting (in the next excited breath) that the chart-topping crooner has secretly tied-the-knot with Selena Gomez.
When the rumors, gossip, and innuendo are examined beyond their "face" they usually don't make any sense (not to a person of reasonable intelligence!).
Rock on, Justin!
Thursday, August 11, 2011
I'll always recall the evening when Ricky Martin first appeared on the Barbara Walters show years ago and was suddenly confronted with an unexpected (off-limits?) question out-of-the-blue about the sexy heartthrob's personal sex life.
"Are you gay, Ricky," Walters probed the Latin Lover point-blank without blinking-an-eye.
Was Ms. goody two-shoes going to land the scoop of the decade (as usual?).
The camera zoomed in for a close-up as Ricky's jaw just-about dropped to the studio floor.
The silence was so awkward that it was deafening.
As Mr. Martin wrestled over whether or not to dignify (?) the question with a response, Walters roared in for the kill.
"Well, you know I have to ask the question because of the rumors," she uttered up in so many words, almost - but not quite - apologetically.
Viewers at home, meanwhile, hung on the edge of their sofas and easy-chairs waiting in suspense for the answer.
Was the popular crooner gay - or were the rumors vicious rumors - perpetuated by jilted lovers and business rivals out to destroy his burgeoning musical career.
Fans around the globe would not "get closure" that night.
Ricky refused to answer.
Invariably, once the rising star ducked the searing probe, viewers were inclined to turn to each other and nod their heads in agreement.
So, when Ricky Martin was asked what "coming out" was like - in a recent television interview - I half-expected the studly married man with two children to lament that it had been utter hell.
Instead, Ricky beamed.
"It was great. I wish I could do it again."
"Really," the host quizzed incredulous.
And then, came the "coming out" quote of the day, you betcha.
"It was like high-fiving God," he cried out jubilantly.
While I was deep in slumber the other evening a beaming Tori Spelling appeared before me.
"Hi," she chirped innocently.
I recall thinking at the time:
Why the heck is Tori Spelling showing up in my dream?
Then, I woke up, still puzzled.
A couple of days later, I was hunkered down in front of the television when - lo & behold - Ms. Spelling popped up on a tabloid news broadcast all smiles and gushing about a fresh career path she is embarking on.
The prophetic dream was a sign.
All will go well for Ms. Spelling.
And, how was your day?
Just a few minutes ago, I spied a mug shot of Ryan Seacrest on twitter, that caused me to sit bolt upright in my comfy easy chair and stare at the laptop screen in disbelief.
Was the fast-talking popular disc jockey a victim of some vicious hacker out to destroy his usually oh-so-cool celebrity image?
Ryan is a friend on MySpace - and just earlier today - one of his standard publicity stills was gracing the web page.
Surely the "American Idol" host didn't update that wild hilarious shot of himself?
If so (say what?) I have only one response.
Ryan, what were 'ya thinking?
Just maybe, the studly man-about-town has an inside track on an upcoming audition for the role of an aging Master in a Karate Kid sequel?
Perhaps the toy-boy is trying to steal a bit of Princess Eugenie's thunder?
If so, Ryan, flog that tired old "do" rag for big bucks on the Internet, and donate the proceeds to a worthwhile charity, eh?
News at 11!
Over the past year, I suffered from a host of physical ailments which caused quite a bit of pain and suffering.
In addition, my mobility was crippled, and - as a result - I ended up suffering a lot of depression in my life.
In a desperate effort to find a cure for my ills, I followed the advice of a handful of so-called "medical experts" and agreed to undergo a battery of tests, procedures, and what-have-you.
But, in spite of the fact I was carefully poked and prodded and probed (at astronomical costs!) there was no cigar in sight!
Until I stumbled across a doctor one day - who discerned from a read-out of a blood count - that I was iron deficient, go figure!
In a nutshell?
I was suffering from anemia and its potentially life-threatening effects.
For starters, iron is important because it helps supply oxygen throughout the human body.
In addition, iron is used to make hemoglobin, which plays a vital role in respect to the red blood cells. For example, if the body does not have enough iron, it makes fewer and smaller red blood cells.
If that occurs, then there is less hemoglobin in the system, which summarily prevents the body from getting enough oxygen that it needs daily.
Women may develop the medical condition due to heavy menstrual bleeding.
An anemic condition may also be triggered due to bleeding inside the body. This bleeding may be caused by problems such as ulcers, hemorrhoids, or cancers.
Bleeding may also be caused by regular aspirin use.
Bleeding inside the body is the most common cause of iron deficiency anemia in men (and in women after menopause).
On occasion, the body may not be able to absorb iron well in the body, as well.
Celiac disease may be the cause.
If a patient has had a part of their stomach or intestine removed, problems with iron absorption may also develop too.
You may not notice the symptoms of anemia because it develops slowly and the symptoms may be mild at first.
In fact, an individual may not notice things are "out-of-whack" until the anemia gets worse.
Symptoms include the following:
* A feeling of weakness or tiredness
* A feeling of dizziness
* Pale complexion
* Shortness of breath.
* Problems with concentration
Babies and small children who have anemia may:
* Be fussy
* Have a short attention span
* Grow more slowly that normal
* Develop skills such as walking and talking later than normal
According to my sources, anemia in children must be treated as quickly as possible so that mental and behavior problems do not last long.
How is iron deficiency anemia diagnosed?
If you think you have anemia, see your doctor. He will probably conduct a physical exam and ask you questions about your medical history and your symptoms. Blood tests may also be taken. The tests may include a complete blood count to look at your red blood cells and an iron test that shows how much iron is in your blood.
How is anemia (iron deficiency) treated?
Your doctor will probably have you take iron supplement pills to treat your anemia. Most people begin to feel better after a few days of taking iron pills. But those who suffer from anemia should not stop taking the pills even if they better. The patient may have to keep taking the pills for several months to build up iron in the body.
Stay healthy, eh?
Star Trek Convention...William Shatner & Leonard Nimoy slated to appear! Beam us up at the Rio in Vegas!
Is it that time again?
Another Star Trek Convention has descended in our midst and landed smack dab in the middle of the oh-so-trendy (and festive gay-friendly) Rio Hotel in the desert oasis.
The four-day event - which kicked-off today - is sure to dazzle Trekkie fans (and tourists alike) this year!
A gala celebration featuring James Darren in concert on Saturday night.
Notable high-profile celebs - from this galaxy and beyond - are also slated to mix-and-mingle with sentient beings who snapped up tickets at $40 a pop for the privilege of being "this-close" to their favorite Sci-Fi fantasy heroes.
For instance, Leonard Nimoy (Dr. Spock) will grace the terrain on Saturday, while William Shatner (Captain Kirk) and Patrick Stewart (Captain Picard) are sure to be mobbed on Sunday when they stride through the packed house with intergalactic greetings.
Actually, more than 70 stars from the original series and its spinoffs will appear at the event.Of course, there will also be dozens of eye-catching vendors booths to high-tail it to, in the event you're in seeking out a rare-and-beautiful keepsake to trek home with.
Organizers are also hoping to break a record for the most costumed Trekkies in a single place.
The count will be held Saturday at 4:15 p.m.
Show up in your Milky-way best, eh?
See 'ya there!
Fremont Street Family Market...rips-off shoppers! Deceptive business practices! Overpriced groceries!
I am always appalled when grocery outlets (who are caught engaging in deceptive business practices) persist with bold-faced dishonest maneuvers in an all-out effort to hoodwink customers in the name of the almighty buck.
What do I have to say to these folks?
Shame on you, for starters.
You can't buy a good reputation, you have to earn it, loser!
For example, the owner of the Fremont Street Family Market (at 611 - 620 Fremont Street in "Sin" City just below Las Vegas Boulevard) routinely lures shoppers to shelf (and cooler) items on the premise that the products are cheaper than they actually are.
When a customer notices the discrepancy at the cashier, the clerk swears up-and-down that the shopper is at fault for not deciphering the misleading signs, which clearly establish that the intent was dishonest and not a misunderstanding as falsely alleged.
People are not idiots, after all!
In the same store, I was also found another disturbing practice, which underscored just how greedy this shopkeeper is!
Just about every item in the canned goods section is overpriced by at least fifty or sixty percent!
In a neighborhood where the residents tend to be on limited incomes (such as Social Security or a pension) it shocks the sensibilities (and likewise incites rage!).
In my estimation, no decent or moral upstanding citizen would engage in such reprehensible rip-off business practices, to be sure.
With these disreputable scammers, it is just business-as-usual.
I say, boycott this scurrilous place and chase them out of the community.
In a civilized society, they are a scourge upon the landscape!
George Lopez (who swore up-and-down when he negotiated the time slot for his talk show that he was not "Jay Lenoed") must be feeling like a jilted lover today now that his fate has sunk in.
The bloom was obviously off the rose at TBS because a spokesperson was inclined to announce last evening that the comic would not be returning to the airwaves - not at their network - anyway.
"TBS has reached the difficult decision not to order a third season of Lopez Tonight," the network said, in addition to noting that it was proud to have worked with the "immensely talented comedian and entertainer."
What a graceful exit for the brass at TBS!
Instead of bluntly announcing that George Lopez was being given the "axe", they tactfully took the high road.
The kudos at the tail end of announcement must have rung hollow to the comic, though.
According to sources, the decision was not only based on ratings, but also due to the cost of the show,
At press time, reps for Mr. Lopez, remained silent on the startling turn-of-events.
Viewers may recall that the funnyman gave up his 11 p.m. ET time slot to make room for Conan O'Brien.
TBS was attempting to reach out to younger viewers (or so they thought) in what has been referred to in the industry as a - "one-two punch of late-shows" which ultimately did not pan out to expectations.
"The results have been unimpressive and the cancellation unsurprising," media analyst Brad Adgate (Horizon Media) astutely noted for the record.
"The only positive was a young median age" of about 32," Adgate added (which is part of the younger adult audience favored by advertisers).
Because late-night hosts are uniformly white and male (Conan O'Brien, Jay Leno, David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Craig Ferguson, for example) TBS was taking a risk from the get-go.
The top brass at the cable outlet were hoping that Georgie-boy would crack the ethnic glass ceiling as the show built a momentum, I guess.
Quite the opposite occurred, however.
Lopez's viewership dropped 40 percent in its second year, from an average of 910,000 nightly viewers at 11 p.m. ET, to 543,000 at the witching hour (midnight).
But, worse news was yet to come.
In August the audience numbers dropped to a dramatic low of 391,000.
It's back to the night-club circuit for George Lopez!.
Break a leg, George!
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
At the prestigious Annenberg "Space for Photography" in Los Angeles, the curators have installed a dazzling exhibit titled - BEAUTY CULTURE - which provides a seminal examination of photography’s role in capturing and defining notions of modern female beauty and how these images profoundly influence our lives in both celebratory and disturbing ways.
Through a myriad of lenses the gallery staff examine both traditional and unconventional definitions of beauty, and challenging stereotypes of gender, race and age.
The links between beauty and violence, glamour and sexuality and the cost (in its multiple meanings) of beauty, have also been thoroughly explored.
The high-profile collection features works from over 100 world-renowned beauty, fashion and fine art photographers.
In essence - BEAUTY CULTURE - encourages a social discussion about the allure and mystique of the pursuit of female beauty, as well as its cult-like glorification (and the multi-billion dollar industries that surround it).
In addition, the thought-provoking display also presents diverse viewpoints on beauty as it has evolved through the 20th and 21st centuries.
The images are challenging, daring and controversial hail the critics!
According to the curator, the exhibition ultimately illustrates the power of the still image to shape cultural ideals and expectations of feminine beauty and photography’s undeniable influence on conceptions of the Self.
In tandem with - BEAUTY CULTURE - hundreds of digital images in vivid detail on high-resolution screens have been showcased in the Digital Gallery.
The Digital Gallery also includes a short documentary film that expands upon the print exhibition’s themes, featuring interviews with well-known photographers, models, historians and beauty experts who guide visitors on a fascinating photographic exploration of the culture – and cult – of beauty
See 'ya there!
The producers of a spanking-new reality show (gosh, hasn't the genre been exhausted yet) have put out a casting call for Vegas "types" who hold down jobs as Realtors, bus drivers, blackjack dealers, concierges, and night-club personnel, and what-have-you.
"Trailer Park Housewives" is being produced by Pariah (Bachelorette Party Las Vegas) and the project's creator Marklen Kennedy (Gigolos).
Word from the production office is that the show is seeking bizarre quirky types in particular!
I expect that shouldn't be a tough audition hall to fill, if the characters who daily inhabit the Vegas Strip, are a realistic cross-section of the locals.
Potential candidates are requested to submit a two-to-five minute video to Pariah production offices by e-mail attachment.
In the alternative DVDs may be sent by U.S. Postal Service to:
Trailer Park Housewives
9744 Wilshire Blvd
Suite No. 205
Beverly Hills, CA
The audition tape should focus on a description of the individual and their current life situation.
Break a leg, eh?
Times are tough!
Although greedy individuals like former Mayor Oscar Goodman are gobbling up the part-time jobs that pay upwards of $60,000.00 annually, humble Americans are struggling to find menial day work in order to make ends meet.
For example, this afternoon I witnessed a desperate gentleman approach the manager at a local McDonalds in Las Vegas, and literally beg for a job at the counter that probably pays a paltry few bucks an hour.
"Come on. You must have some shift available," the frustrated man pleaded.
"There's nothing, Sir. I'm sorry."
Subsequently, some libraries are offering up workshops so that patrons down-on-their luck, may have the chance to learn new skills which might lay a foundation for a successful business venture.
Heck, why not be your own boss, eh?
The Contra Costa County Library is offering a free workshop on how to raise chickens, for example.
You can learn how to farm your own fresh organic eggs.
The free course - not only teaches the basics of chicken care - but offers up tips on the additives to use for a compost, pest control, and what-have-you.
A Q&A panel discussion will follow to round out the workshop.
Who knows, maybe one day attendees will be providing McDonald's with the "stuffing" for their mighty tasty Egg McMuffins!
Saturday August 13th
Oak View Room
Walnut Creek Library
10:30 am - 12:00 pm
The Library is just off the Walnut Creek BART station in California
See 'ya there!
Whenever the subject of Buddhism surfaces in a conversation the gentle persona of the Dalai Lama probably looms large in most minds.
But, there is another Master - in the Zen tradition - who has also carved out a niche as a spiritual leader for a multitude of seekers around the face of the globe.
Of course, I am referring to Thich Nhat Hanh, who resides in a Buddhist compound outside of Paris for a large part of the year, when he is not travelling to the four corners of the earth to spread the message of peace.
A couple of years ago, I attended one of his peace walks (peace in every step) in downtown Los Angeles.
What a profound spiritual experience that was!
It is because of efforts such as these that Thich Nhat Hanh was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.
Although the honor was bestowed on Martin Luther King, Thich Nhat Hanh was a worthy candidate none-the-less.
Curiously, the Zen Master has been on my mind for a couple of weeks.
Today, I understood why, when it was brought to my attention that the respected Buddhist Master will be appearing for a talk at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium on September 3rd.
Hopefully, the spiritual one will lead his followers in a meditation, too.
After all, one that I participated in in 2008 was quite an enlightening experience!
See 'ya there!
September 3rd (2011)
Pasadena Civic Auditorium
Do your photos lack the much-needed sizzle to spark a rewarding career in the highly-competitive realms of professional photography?
If so, Visual Communications invites you to attend - "The Food Porn Lab" - a multi-dimensional community event that is bent on offering fledgling photographers a golden opportunity to beef up their skills.
"The Food Porn Lab" is a free - 3-in-1 event - celebrating the love of food that combines a community potluck, photography, and food styling workshop taught by a Pulitzer prize-winning Los Angeles Times photojournalists.
In addition, there will be a photography competition sponsored by Starry Kitchen.
"Food Porn" is a term popularized by the blogosphere that is used to humorously describe food photography that is so tantalizing that it arouses.
The “Food Porn Lab” website boasts the event "will give the foodie in you multiple foodgasms."
"We wanted to make a completely free - no-strings-attached - event that really gives back to the community," Visual Communications event programmer Alexis Kim said.
"Not the type of event that entertains by numbing the audience into vegetables, but one that is completely pleasurable, and stimulates while building skills. Good food, free drinks, cool people, plus a chance to learn skills from an expert in the field without paying a cent. What could be better?"
According to a recent study from the Consumer Electronics Association, 77% of American households now own at least one digital camera, with 40% posting online at sites such as Myspace, Facebook, Photobucket, and Snapfish (http://www.ce.org).
Americans are taking photos more than ever before, but according to the Food Porn sponsors, the quality of the stills are not up to professional standards.
“It’s ridiculous how many images are out there,” Los Angeles Times Photo Editor Kenneth Kwok said.
“Our society is so saturated. Digital technology has made it a lot easier. But along with the freedom and flexibility, there’s a lot of bad stuff out there. Look at how many people call themselves a photographer. You used to be able to differentiate a professional from an amateur from just one look at their camera. Now the line of distinction is so blurred.”
Pulitzer prize-winning Los Angeles Times photojournalist Kirk McKoy, along with Los Angeles Times Photo Editor Kenneth Kwok, will teach the free photography workshops.
After the workshop, attendees can participate in “The Ultimate Food Porn Challenge" sponsored by Starry Kitchen.
Starry Kitchen is a Pan-Asian eatery in Downtown L.A. that gained fame for its glamorous origins as an illegal underground restaurant run from the owner’s home.
Participants will compete by photographing ten dishes from Starry Kitchen's rotating menu.
Starry Kitchen owners Thi and Nguyen Tran and workshop instructors Kirk McKoy and Kenneth Kwok will judge the photos.
Winners will have their work displayed at Starry Kitchen’s restaurant and on its website and menu.
Additional prizes include two All-Access Festival Passes for the 2012 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, a $100 Starry Kitchen gift card, and a $100 gift card to fusion gourmet restaurant The Lazy Ox in Little Tokyo.
The one-hour photography workshop will be broken up into two - 30-minute crash course tutorials - such as "Food Styling Basics," "Photography: Beginners Basics," and "Photography: Advanced Techniques."
Participants will put their new skills to the test by participating in a competition in which they are required to style and shoot dishes donated by Starry Kitchen.
The contest categories include “Best Color,” “Best Competition,” “Best Overall,” and “Most Mouth-Watering.”
The event will take place from 5 to 9 p.m. at VC in Little Tokyo.
120 Judge John Aiso Street
An e-mail request to enter should include:
Camera Model and type (DSLR or Point & Shoot)
There is no admissions fee.
Visual Communications is the nation’s premier Asian Pacific American media arts organization and is dedicated to the honest and accurate portrayals of Asian Pacific American peoples, communities, and heritage through the media arts.
Visual Communication promotes intercultural understanding through the creation, presentation, preservation and support of media works by and about Asian Pacific Americans.
Every spring, it presents the prestigious Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival
The Fest is one of my favorites classy events which I personally attend each year.
See 'ya there!
Tuesday, August 9, 2011
Google is quite the enterprising business entity - always quick to develop new technology - with the self-serving aim of monopolizing the blogosphere with their innovative offerings guaranteed to rustle up big bucks.
Unfortunately, a raft of their software programs are total crap (poorly-designed).
If you're a blogger - and post daily on "blogspot" - I'm sure you'll sympathize with my frustrations!
For starters, the spell check option is rife with glitches.
As a result, I end up wasting dozens of man hours weekly, needlessly.
Heck, I want my life back!
For example, once I have written a draft I usually run spell check to ferret out typos, misspellings of tricky words I may not be entirely familiar with, and what-have-you.
On occasion, when I click on the icon to start up the scan, the post begins to shake up-and-down erratically preventing me from editing the material.
Worse than that?
Once this bizarre snafu takes control, I usually have to shut-down the "tattler" edit bay and begin anew, because the spell check function won't respond to my request to CEASE & DESIST!
Once I get started up again, other problems may (or may not) pop up during the edit process.
For instance, when the spell checker singles out a word to correct, another intriguing glitch may surface.
In spite of the fact I may have spelled the word "single" correctly, spell check may inform me this is not the case.
In a nutshell?
If I give authorization to proceed with the correction, the software may end up spelling single with a double "s" (ssingle).
Where's Dakota Jones when 'ya need him, eh?
Sometimes when I facilitate a word in a post, spell check informs me that I have not selected the right word.
On one occasion, when I used the word "imminent" (rightly so) spell check changed it to "eminent".
Consequently, I received an e-mail from a tattler reader who proceeded to chastise me for using an incorrect word in that particular circumstance.
"I can't take your posts seriously when you make such a grievous error," the irate reader snarled at me in their snippy communication.
Instead of angrily retorting back, I took the high road instead.
I zipped off an e-mail in which I thanked the individual for bringing the matter to my attention.
In spite of the fact it was not my fault, you'd think I had committed a crime against humanity, dudes!
But, the most disturbing (and frustrating) problems arise now-and-then when I spy an error in a post and attempt to correct it.
For some inexplicable reason, after I edit the post - and summarily publish it to the Tattler site with appropriate corrections - only the "title" of the post shows up on the blog page.
The edited "body" of the post vanishes into thin air!
Before I got wise to the snafu, I often lost complete posts, and was forced to toil for another hour or so on a spanking-new post.
When it became obvious that this troubling software problem was going to persist (after all, google ignored my requests to investigate and resolve the glaring flaw in their product) - I was forced to save the bodies of post for safekeeping until the article was published without incident on the Tattler.
In view of the foregoing, I trust that my readers (and first-time visitors to the site) will give me a little leeway and not be so judgemental.
Some days, after spending hours on the laptop, I just have to take a break in spite of the fact I am upset over errors in a post that I am sure I will criticized for.
I never said I was perfect!
If I was, God would have welcomed me with open arms into heaven years ago!
There was a time when McDonalds and nutrition were considered an incongruity of terms!
And, wonders never cease, too.
For the first time at McDonalds, I passed on a junk-food high-fat snack and came up a winner!
The Chinese Chicken Salad I ordered turned out be tasty and quite nutritious, too.
For example, a generous portion of grilled chicken was served up on a fresh bed of lettuce, and included delicious toppings such as almonds, mandarin orange slices, beans, and crisply-cut vegetables (carrots and tomatoes).
The caesars salad dressing hit the spot, too (though a little calorie-ridden).
The order was so large (approximately $5.00 a pop) that I ended up taking a doggie-bag home to munch on the last few mouthfuls at home.
Thumbs up to McDonalds for changing the direction of the fast-food industry by providing alternative choices to extra-fatty burgers, greasy (salty) french fries, and all the nasty trimmings that end up on a customer's waistine!
When it was announced last week that Jerry Lewis (who once played a foil alongside Dean Martin in the mediums of stage, film, and television) was being dropped as host of the Muscular Dystophy Telethon, I wasn't surprised in the least.
Frankly, I wondered why Mr. Lewis wasn't dropped a couple of years ago when a petition was being signed to oust him as host when it came to light that the superstar was being accused of engaging in reprehensible conduct in public (and elsewhere) which was detrimental to the MDA telethon.
For me, the intrigue reared its ugly head after I published a post in which I noted that Mr. Lewis was receiving the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences for his alleged compassionate humanitarian acts.
The Jean Hersholt Award is given periodically to an individual in the film business whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry.
My original post on the honor was published on January 28th (2009).
Like most everyone at the time, I thought the recognition was deserving, in view of Mr. Lewis's long-standing association with the MDA Telethon.
Subsequently, I was quite shocked when a handful of individuals contacted me by e-mail, and proceeded to protest the honor being bestowed on the celebrated star of such films as "The King of Comedy".
In one e-mail , a gentleman who identified himself as Ben Mattlin, lamented as follows:
"Regarding your blog about Jerry Lewis' receiving the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, you and your readers should know that many of us object to it. He frequently calls people with disabilities, whom he supposedly helps, "cripples". He refers to gay men as "fags" and has said that women are nothing more than baby-making machines. Moreover, his annual telethon exploits kids with disabilities to garner pity as a fundraising tool, despite the constant entreaties of the disability community to stop the pity campaign. It does more harm than good. But Lewis and his organization have refused to work with our community. Instead, Lewis has threatened to have his critics killed. Lewis is no humanitarian and does not deserve this prize. It is an insult to people with disabilities, the gay rights movement and the memory of Jean Hersholt."
In closing, Mr. Mattlin stressed that he'd be happy to discuss the issues further with interested parties.
Mr. Mattlin also provided a link to a web site where an online petition has been posted for other like-minded individuals to voice their disapproval.
According to the webmaster at the site, over 2400 individuals had already signed the petition, which called on the Academy to cancel its plans to give Lewis the humanitarian award.
At least twelve organizations, including the American Association of People with Disabilities and the Disability Rights Center, endorsed the "The Trouble with Jerry" petition to be submitted to the Motion Picture Academy in advance of the Oscar ceremony.
At this juncture, I proceeded to post a follow-up expose on the issue, and invited Mr. Lewis to respond to the accusations.
Mr. Lewis did not take me up on my offer.
Just prior to the event, industry-insiders (and the public-at-large) speculated that Mr. Lewis would surely make a statement to set the record straight when he appeared to accept the prestigious award.
Surprisingly, the comic elected to ignore the issue!
To many, that was a nasty slap in the face.
In view of the fact Jerry Lewis is stepping down now, without comment or explanation, I am inclined to surmise that the past has finally caught up with the once-respected showman.
For example, I vaguely recall that a big brouhaha erupted in the press many years ago, when Lewis was accused of name-calling and engaging in questionable (distasteful) tactics to raise much-needed funds for the respected Muscular Dystrophy Association each year at the Labor Day week-end telethon.
In his defense, at the time, the comic asserted for the record that comments he may have made were not intended to be mean-spirited, nor were they uttered up with the express purpose of putting-down or insulting any one individual.
Mr. Mattlin complained, in response, that Jerry and his organization have always refused to work with the community in respect to the disturbing allegations.
“Pity and charity, as practiced by Jerry Lewis, undermine our equality."
One outrageous remark Lewis allegedly uttered up - "a disabled person is just “half a person" - infuriated many, too.
In response to his disabled critics, the Telethon host snarled back:
“You don’t want to be pitied because you’re a cripple in a wheelchair? Stay in your house!”
In view of the foregoing, it appears that Mr. Lewis may have to clear the air once and for all.
Once again, I offer Mr. Lewis the opportunity to tell his side of things at The Tattler site, in the event he feels the facts have been distorted or misrepresented (and with the ultimate aim of setting the record straight).
The ousted MDA Host may e-mail his comments to:
In the alternative, Jerry may post his response directly to this site, by facilitating the "comment" function below.
.Albert Schweitzer once said:
"Anyone who proposes to do good must not expect people to roll stones out of his way, but must accept his lot calmly, even if they roll a few stones upon it."
Officials at the Muscular Dystrophy Association have announced that Jerry Lewis will return to his hosting duties this year.
IDA & Women in Film Present...Women Behind The Camera! Lesley Chilcott of "Inconvenient Truth" to appear!
The International Documentary Association (IDA) - in collaboration with "Women in Film" - is conducting a panel discussion on "Women Behind the Camera".
Producer Lucy Webb will moderate a discussion with Lesley Chilcott ("Waiting for 'Superman" & "An Inconvenient Truth"), Michele Ohayon ("S.O.S/State of Security", "Colors Straight Up") and Lauren Greenfield ("Thin") with a focus on the rewards, challenges, and opportunities women face in producing and directing documentary films.
An insightful and informative Q & A will immediately follow.
Guests are also invited to attend a wine reception shortly thereafter in the theatre environs where they will have an opportunity to mix-and-mingle with other film buffs and chat up the filmmakers.
Discussion & Audience Q&A
7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
611 N. Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90036
SPECIAL SUPPORT PROVIDED BY
Los Angeles County Arts Commission
Sponsors & Supporters of IDA
Monday, August 8, 2011
Although the opening ceremony for West Hollywood's state-of-the-art Library isn't slated to launch until October, there has been quite an upbeat buzz in the neighborhood (and beyond in adjoining communities) about a-couple-of commissioned murals that have begun to grace the outside walls of the facility.
The project to beautify the site with art was an inspiring collaboration between local WeHo artists and the Museum of Contemporary Art (Los Angeles).
The germ of the idea sprouted when MOCA Director Jeffrey Deitch toured the construction site and recognized there was a golden opportunity to turn the exterior walls (bordering on Melrose Avenue and San Vicente Boulevard) into a eye-catching cultural experience.
The creative notion was a perfect fit for MOCA's "Artists in the Streets" exhibition series.
Each artist's proposed mural went through a rigorous (and formal) approval process from the get-go.
One mural (70 feet by 106 feet) features a peace dove beautifully-crafted by artist Shepard Fairey.
A second creation by Kenny Scharf is quite textural in nature and is highlighted with encrypted quotations by Salman Rushdie.
"This isn't graffiti," Andrew Campbell (City's Cultural Affairs Administrator) assured doubters.
"We consider it street art because it was approved."
According to Campbell, the feedback has been extraordinarily positive.
Well, they don't call West Hollywood the creative city for no good reason!
The Internet was all a-buzz over a wild "do" Nicole Kidman (MySpace friend) was flouncing around in on the set of her spanking-new project "The Paperboy".
The look is quite a departure for the Oscar-winner who was first-introduced to the realms of celluloid with a coiff that suffered severely from a bad case of the frizzies.
Fans (and film-goers alike) may recall that when Ms. Kidman splashed into the limelight - opposite Tom Cruise in the romantic drama "Days of Thunder" - that she was a flaming redhead.
The chemistry between Cruise and Kidman onscreen - kindled a passionate romance off - which led to a trip down the aisle to the altar after a brief courtship.
A smattering of freckles contributed to a fiery spunky "look" that worked well for the actress from down-under in the early headstrong days of her fledgling career.
But it was not until Nicole's image splashed across the silver screen in a remake of the Sci-Fi thriller - "The Invaders" (re-titled "The Invasion") that a Hollywood-style make-over (sans freckles and replete with a "do" that featured straight ends) managed to catapult the talented actress into super-star mode.
Ms. Kidman never looked back, needless to say, and Cruise was left eating crow.
By the way, the charismatic star is also a clothes-horse, who made my 10 Best-Dressed list for women in the recent past.
Now, if only the fashion police could work some magic with that musician-husband of hers, eh?
Taylor Lautner trotted out in chic sexy black leather (which suited his handsome dark looks), Justin Bieber thanked the "maker", GLEE continued to snap up accolades, and technical oversights (incompetence?) threatened to spoil the night's festivities.
But, a good time was had by all, in the end.
Took a while getting to the closing credits, though.
I expect that viewers at home were ready to switch the channel when Ashton Kutcher strode on the stage at the top of the otherwise high-energy Teen Choice Awards to accept a trophy (surfboard) for Choice Actor (in a Comedy).
Kutcher didn't look the part.
Actually, his off-beat fashion look was downright goofy.
The actor, soon to appear on "Two And a Half Men" in the season opener, looked for all-the-world like he was prepping for a the role of a down-and-out homeless dude.
The bizarre moustache was distacting, while the beard accented a weak boyish chin.
And, what of those dark sunglasses?
The glare of the spotlight must be too blinding for Demi's better half on the heels of stealing Charlie Sheen's thunder - duly reported in a swirl of hysterical press reports (if you recall).
Or, just maybe Kutcher was taking a cue from Jack Nicholson.
When you're Ashon Kutcher - "Two And a Half Men Saviour" (the jury is still out on that) - you can do whatevver the fuck 'ya want.
How would I best describe the acceptance speech?
Long-winded, rambling, self-indulgent and - just plain - "out there".
Any moment, I half-expected the kid-from-nowhere, to drop his pants and model his underwear.
It's amazing the way he got the audience involved in a sing-a-long, though.
Was everyone on drugs?
Then, for a bit of comic relief, Ellen DeGeneres sprinted up to cuddle her surfboard (the nano-second was a breath of fresh air).
Although Ellen (God love 'ya) is as old as-the-hills, the "out" talk-show host is still admired by the teen gen.
"Thanks to everyone. Well no, just to those who voted for me," she quipped.
DeGeneres was more boyish than ever, too.
I guess marriage agrees with her. Do 'ya suppose Ellen plays the role of top (the butch) in the relationship with her pretty wife Portia?
Selena Gomez dazzled once again - with not one - but two eye-popping outfits (which accentuated bust and leg).
The number she trotted down the carpet in (the "Bieb" was at her side) was right on-the-money.
White, for purity?
Come on - surely you don't think in your wildest dreams - that Justin and Selena haven't done the nasty yet?
Taylor Lautner was a studly stand-out (he took a Choice Award for Sci-fi Fantasy actor) attired in chic black leather which complemented his dark handsome looks.
For the most part, the glitzy ceremony - which moved along at a fast clip for the most part - was upbeat.
Throughout the night's festivities, the camera panned the rapt audience (which consisted of a mix of celebs and real live teens dragged in from the wilds of the valley) and caught a gaggle of toothpaste-white smiles mugging for the camera, stylish celebs darting to-and-from the multi-colored stage, and the occasional close-up of a heartthrob staring the other way.
To paraphrase a quote from the film "Sunset Boulevard":
"Justin! You weren't ready for your close-up!"
When the squeaky-clean pop star nabbed the prize for Choice Musical Artist he was natural and down-to-earth on stage.
"Is this real? Can I use it?"
Of course, the hit-maker - blessed with a bevy of bodacious babes chasing after his cute little ass - was referring to the much-coveted Surfboard Trophy.
Just betcha, he'll be out surfing in Malibu tomorrow, with the paparazzi hiding behind every bush waiting to catch a wipe-out on film.
By the way, the young Canuck looked hip, decked out in black vest, matching slacks, fuschia shirt (open at the collar) with tails hanging out.
Okay! Okay! Okay!
When you're young and carefree the fashion police tend to look the other way.
The mercurial singing sensation must have been catching up on politics stateside in recent days, though.
When the respectful lad thanked "God" the maker for his success, Rick Perry's controversial cult-like "response" rally sprang to mind.
The tribute was a little over-the-top, but heartfelt, nonetheless
A nice Christian boy - that God has smiled on - don't 'ya think?
For the most part, the night smacked of youthfulness, and brimmed with a twist of zest and oodles of vitality (which bubbled over in abundance everywhere).
A couple of winners mangled the English language along the way, go figure!
For instance, when Blake Lively scored for her performance in a TV drama (Gossip Girls), she did the unthinkable.
"OMG, this is so exciting," she gushed, "What makes it so exciting, to go to work, is you guys."
Gosh, gag me with a spoon, eh?
Will someone take the ditzy babe aside and point out that "you" is both singular and plural.
Subsequently, it was not necessary to say "you guys" when expressing her thanks to the audience.
Selena Gomez committed the same language sin a few moments later when she gifted her Surfboard to the fans.
"This is for yous guys," she excitedly screamed.
Gosh, do 'ya suppose her parents are gangsters?
By the way, her gig on stage was a highlight of the Teen Choice Awards.
The gorgeous hat - which adorned her pretty head during the live mesmerizing performance - was obviously a nod to the Duchess of Cambridge.
The overall "look" sizzled up the screen!
There was a sensual sexy side to Ms. Gomez that has taken bloom in recent days.
Do you suppose the little darling dresses up in black panties and garters when she's behind closed doors with you-know-who?
That may account for the twinkle in Justin's eyes.
When Ed Helms strode up to accept the "Hissy Fit" award.
Was that off-the-wall award supposed to be an insult or an honor?
A poignant moment also splashed across the old boob tube when a sharp camera-man captured a shot of Mark Wahlberg with a young one in his arms as he gazed on the antics of actors on stage.
Was "The Fighter" there in the event he won in his category?
I always shake my head in disgust when some bimbo babe struts out incessantly tugging at the hem of a skirt persisently riding-up!
Technical problems were unforgiveable considering the status of the Teen Choice Awards also.
Or, was there budget just too low, to iron out the wrinkles on commercial break?
For example, during a few speeches, it was difficult to make hide-or-tail of what the actors were saying, because the mics were positioned "too low" on the stand.
An experienced performer would have adjusted the darn thing, impromptu, or worked it into a comedy routine at least.
Meanwhile, it was evident this evening that Vampires are still breathing down heavy on fans of the genre.
"Vampire Diaries" scored for sci-fi TV drama, for starters.
And Twilight - a midnight favorite - nabbed a fistful of the novel prizes as expected.
Robert Pattinson snatched up Choice Actor (Drama) and Choice Vampire as expected.
But, Taylor Swift, was undoubtedly the big winner last night with a half-a-dozen or so (who's counting at this juncture?) Surfboards to lug home.
Jake Gyllenhaal eat your heart out!
'Til next year!