*What with tomorrow being Thanksgiving, I feel it’s timely, and touching, to share this video with you. Maybe you can watch as you travel to work by bus or train; or maybe as you ride to work in the carpool. What are you doing for lunch? Maybe watch it on your tablet as you sit for a while to eat your sandwich or drink your Latte.
I’m not gonna lie. I just stumbled upon this video. And please don’t look at this as a “downer” but it shows so many people of note, celebrities, who have died from cancer. I was so moved by it as I watched because, well…
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving.
And as families of all sorts come together, chances are there will be a moment when someone notices who is not there. Continue reading →
*Count yourself pretty hard to impress if you don’t find this portrait of actor Morgan Freeman to be absolutely AMAZING. An 18-year-old British artist used his fingers to create the ultra-realistic picture of the actor – capturing all the characteristics we have come to know him by. The distinguished gray hair, calm, direct stare, on a face punctuated with tiny moles.
Artist Jack Ede spent a period of 137 hours to create this drawing of the actor and documented his step-by-step process via Instagram and YouTube. Continue reading →
*Wow, the resemblance is uncanny, and you can’t blame a girl for workin’ it to make a buck.
And that’s exactly what Rihanna look-alike, Andele Lara (shown above on the right) is doing. Only thing is, she’s making a lot more than a buck!
At 22-years-old, the Boston, Massachusetts resident is frequently mistaken for the sexy pop star, but what now serves as her attributes was a sore spot in her teen years. “Growing up, I was a very shy girl,” Lara told the Daily Mail. “I was known as the skinny girl with the big forehead.”
As time went on Lara began experimenting with her hair and clothes – being more trendy, and she soon started getting the attention from her classmates; who noticed her likeness to the Barbadian singer with the hit song “Umbrella” on the radio. “The comments started in my sophomore year. My friend had a magazine with Rihanna on the cover. He held it up to my face and was like, ‘You look like her!’” Continue reading →
Who would’ve thunk it? It’s way cool to have a big butt…now.
But when a black girl was growing up “back in the day,” carrying “junk in the trunk” was made fun of and criticized. Many women grew up self-conscious about it; because auntie and uncle, her male cousins and people in the neighborhood who didn’t mean any harm, casually brought attention to it via snide remarks. “Girl you sho’ got a big butt!”
Now, white women, Hispanic women and even Asians are paying big money to get a ‘big booty.’
And that means big business all the way around.
Gym classes are filled with women attempting to plump up their posterior; plastic surgeons are busier than ever enhancing the buttocks; and padding is no longer reserved just for bras and male protective underwear – but women’s panties too!
*Hey Gladiators, by now you may have heard that Shonda Rhimes‘ hit, “Scandal,” was inspired by the real life story of a Washington “Fixer” named Judy Smith and her “Leader of the free world client.” You might even know that the client was former president, George H. W. Bush.
But did you know that when it was clear that the show was going to be green-lit, and Smith placed a call to give Bush a heads up, about a new show that was going to premiere based on their business relationship; but the creator of the show had decided to throw in a new twist, Mr. Bush wasn’t completely turned off by the idea. In fact, he quite liked it.
Prolific writer J. California Cooper, has died at age 82.
Cooper focused mainly on writing plays, until she met Alice Walker who advised her to consider short stories and novels instead, because they were an easier path to a paycheck.
She had been living in Seattle, Washington.
According to her daughter Paris Williams, Cooper died early Saturday; she had experienced a number of heart attacks over the past few years.
Cooper was born in Berkeley, and frequented a local theater there called Black Repertory Group, where a close-knit family of black actors (EURThisNthat editor, DeBorah B. Pryor included) worked under the guidance of founder, Nora B. Vaughn, who produced many of Cooper’s plays. The playwright was referred to as Joan ‘California’ Cooper at the time, wrote more than a dozen plays and went on to have about a dozen books published after switching to prose fiction.
Walker met Cooper after she came to see one of her plays.
“Her advice to my mother was you should write short stories or novels because it was easier to get paid. She went home and wrote 12 stories,” Williams said.
When Cooper asked Walker to write an introduction to her first story collection, the writer who had just been honored for “The Color Purple” asked to publish the book at her own publishing house. Walker also helped Cooper get one of her stories published in Essence magazine and the book took off from there, Williams said.
Williams called her mother a hard worker. She worked a variety of jobs from a teamster on the Alaska pipeline to an escrow officer and a manicurist to pay the bills.
She went to the pipeline to work as a secretary and switched to bus and truck driving after she realized she could make a lot more money, her daughter recalls. She drove welders up to their work site and then panned for gold while waiting for the return trip, Williams said.
“My mother tried a lot of things when I was growing up,” she said. “Writing was something she always did. She just stuck them in a drawer.”
Reviewing her novel “Family” in The New York Times in 1990, Roy Hoffman called it “the sort of book that ought to be read out loud.”
“Never mind that the narrator, Clora, is a ghost,” Hoffman wrote. “In its strong rhythms and colloquial expressions, this book is a living woman’s monologue. At times, Clora even seems to lean toward us, grabbing at our lapels.”
Williams said her mother never took her fame seriously.
“She used to say people have forgotten all about me,” Williams said. “But all her books are still in print. It’s pretty amazing.”
Her mother did not want a funeral and requested instead that she be remembered with personal acts of kindness or charity.
Rest in sweet peace, Ms. Cooper. And give Mr. and Mrs. Vaughn (and Mr. Lamar) a tight squeeze for me.
*Bill Cosby did a remarkable thing for black people and television in general 30 years ago. He used his education, comic genius, courage and skill to demonstrate that people of all races and socio-economic rankings can sit around a television set and watch a show where a family with children go through the same things all families go through.
But this family just happened to be black.
And he made it look effortless. And it was enjoyable. The Cosby Show did change what was possible if you were black and on television. It did show that you didn’t have to play to type, and that there truly is a universality of the human experience. It made you believe you actually could be anything. Unapologetic. Out loud! Whether it be a doctor, a lawyer, heck, a homeboy in outer space. And you can be sure that the eight-season-success of this formula called “The Cosby Show” proved beyond the shadow of a doubt to NBC that with the right kind of support, successful shows, with positive messages, can be brought about by an all-black cast.
But of course this wasn’t the mindset BC: before Cosby. Where the most prominent programming was black sitcoms built on a racist past. Shows like radio’s Amos ’n’ Andy – a staged minstrel-turned-television show that starred black actors playing roles with safe characters who were non-threatening to white folks. Dress these folks up or down, but keep them sassy, with that ham-bone talk coming out of their mouth because these characters were only seconds out of the cotton patch, and now struggling in the big city. Continue reading →
(NEW YORK, N.Y. September 22, 2014) – On October 2, 2014, the eve of National Magic Week,International Master Magician ICE McDonald, the newly elected National President of the Society of American Magicians (S.A.M.) along with S.A.M.’s National Dean, George Schindler and one of the Society’s Senior Officers David Bowers will visit the gravesite of world famous escape artist Harry Houdini. Planning for the huge restoration process will begin at 1:30 p.m. at the Machpelah Cemetery in Queens. Continue reading →