Sunday, April 30, 2006
Get Well, Mark
My dear friend Mark has broken his ankle and will be out of commission for a few weeks. A broken ankle is no laughing matter but I offer this picture of an elementary school gardening project to cheer him up.
Thursday, April 27, 2006
Those "DAMN YANKEES"
You know that when you live in Red Sox Nation that a show like 'Damn Yankees' is bound to be a big hit.
The North Shore Music Theater in Beverly, Mass. has opened its 2006 season with an all new production of DAMN YANKEES, created just for NSMT audiences, and presented in association with The Boston Red Sox. NSMT puts a new spin on this hilarious and heart-warming classic which now tells the story of a die-hard Red Sox fan who makes a deal with the devil to help the Sox take the pennant from the dreaded Yankees.
Set in 1957, the devil warns that if Joe Hardy doesn't complete his pact with Satan, that it could be another 50 years before the Red Sox win the pennant and break Babe Ruth's curse!
But with a hunky George Merrick as Joe Hardy and a cast of beautiful baseball players in various stages of undress, who cares about the World Series anyway!
And now we know that the devil is a Yankees fan! Many hisses and boos from the audience when this little tidbit was revealed.
Saturday, April 22, 2006
Take me out to the ball game...
The Countess has been very political in her postings lately and really how can you blame her today. But the Countess also has another life that occupies her time. Her grandson, the Grand Duke, has just pitched another awesome baseball game and she is so very proud of him. He is the apple of her eye.
Friday, April 21, 2006
A song for the times
This little ditty about assholes just follows along with my previous entry about Dubya's place in history.
Once an asshole, always an asshole...
and sponsored by Google in protest of Big Business Butting into Internet Access Freedoms.
Google, Amazon, MoveOn. All these entities are fighting back as Congress tries to pass a law giving a few corporations the power to end the free and open Internet as we know it.
You can do your part today.If you haven't expressed your outrage about the latest infringement of corporations into your personal computer, please do so here: Protest to your elected officials!
A history lesson
A very interesting article about how today's historians rank Bush and why.
I especially enjoyed this quote:
"When asked if he ever sought advice from the elder Bush, the president responded, "There is a higher Father that I appeal to." This just confirms my fears that Bush is schizophrenic and thinks those voices in his head are orders from Jesus.
Sean Wilentz is a history professor at Princeton and an award winning author of several books about political history in the USA. He is also a Bob Dylan scholar, hence the Rolling Stone connection.
Saturday, April 15, 2006
And another one bites the dust
Dubya has given a strong endorsement to his Secretary of Defense and, at this point in time, a Bush endorsement is career suicide. So The Donald, chief architect of the Iraq war and proponent of torture is going to be the sacrificial lamb offered up to the slaughter in the sacrifice to be given to the gods to try to stave off the inevitable downfall of the Republican Party in the November elections.
This article in the Boston Globe pretty much sums it up:
Revolt against Rumsfeld
April 15, 2006
PRESIDENT BUSH made a serious mistake yesterday when, responding to devastating criticisms of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld by retired military generals, he asserted that Rumsfeld's performance is ''exactly what is needed at this critical period."
The officers speaking out against Rumsfeld deserve serious consideration. They are making a judgment that career military officers are almost always reluctant to make, since they respect the principle of civilian authority over the nation's armed forces. This is an essential principle, one that accounts for the stability of the American political system and distinguishes it from countries in which elected civilian governments are intermittently supplanted by military regimes.
To go public as they have, these generals had to conclude that the harm done to the national interest and military institutions by Rumsfeld has become so great that they had to make a rare exception to their code of silent deferral to the Pentagon's civilian chiefs.
Instead of rushing to defend Rumsfeld as if the generals' public criticism is a purely political problem to be finessed with a routine show of presidential resoluteness, Bush ought to reflect long and hard on what they have said.
Major General John Batiste, who commanded the Army's First Infantry Division in Iraq until last November and who turned down a promotion and the role of the number two military officer in Iraq because he did not want to serve under Rumsfeld, said on NBC's ''Today Show" yesterday: ''We went to war with a flawed plan that didn't account for the hard work to build the peace after we took down the regime. We also served under a secretary of defense who didn't understand leadership, who was abusive, who was arrogant, and who didn't build a strong team."
And to offer a little more entertainment, I give you 'Bushisms'.
Friday, April 14, 2006
Gay? Fine by me!
I love young people and their open minds and their trust that their instincts are correct. Hamilton, Massachusetts is mostly an Old WASP, New Money kind of town. A Boston suburban community that you move to when you are making big bucks and want a good school system for your 2.5 kids. The following article appeared in our local paper, The Salem News, but I am printing it out because you have to register with The News to read it.
T-shirts aim to foster tolerance for gays, lesbians
By Ethan Forman, Staff writer
— Not everyone is "fine" with a national fashion statement that has turned up at Hamilton-Wenham Regional High: a T-shirt bearing the slogan, "Gay? Fine By Me." But students, at least, are respecting one another's differences.On Wednesday, students from the school's 15-member gay-straight alliance group Creating Awareness Respect and Equality passed out 75 of the T-shirts. Two group members, sophomores Aleigh Suffren and Maggie Druschel, said their lunch table was mobbed as they passed out the shirts, and that they didn't have enough to go around.The students did not invent the slogan, however. The shirts bear the motto of the nonprofit Fine By Me Inc., an organization founded in 2003 by 10 Duke University students. The group runs T-shirt campaigns across the country and says 40,000 people are now taking part in the project, with 10,000 college and high school students expected to don the shirts this spring. Other Massachusetts schools involved with the effort include Newton North and South high schools, Georgetown High and several colleges.Kate Roberts, a 19-year-old senior and member of the alliance group, spearheaded the local T-shirt drive. She often wore her own "Gay? Fine By Me" T-shirt to school after she bought one at a conference last year. The shirts range in price from $6.90 a piece for quantities of 25 to 49, down to $4.10 for quantities of 1,000 or more. Roberts did not charge students for the shirts on Wednesday, but did accept donations, raising $190."We are just out for acceptance and creating awareness," Roberts said, explaining the effort. She hopes students wear their shirts often so that "at least every day you see people with a shirt."Yet Roberts acknowledged the effort hasn't enjoyed universal appeal. One freshman, she said, wore a "Gay, Not Fine By Me" T-shirt, but was made to take it off because it targeted a specific group. Several students wore "Straight? Fine By Me" T-shirts, she said, which was fine by her.Druschel said some were shaken up by the opposing T-shirts, but then realized that people have a right to their opinions.School adjustment counselor Holly Brabson-Halsey, who serves as the gay-straight alliance group's adviser, said she spoke to the group about the possible opposition from other students. "Part of that is being respectful to everyone's opinion," she said. "People are entitled to their opinions, but they can't do it in a way that is hateful or is harassing of other students." So far, so good."I think it's no problem with me," freshman Philip Posillico said of the T-shirt slogan. "It's not going to be a big deal. People are just expressing what they feel.""I think it's a good idea," said Conor Burke, 15. "I think it's just good for people to express themselves, just to have an open community and have people be accepting no matter (another person's) religion or sexual orientation."Some, however, did not like the sentiment displayed so openly."I'm not totally opposed," said Colin Jermain, a junior. "I'm not totally in favor. I don't like it in my face.""We are not in your face about it," Druschel said. "... Plenty of people have writing on their T-shirts."Members of the group plan to wear the T-shirts on April 26, a day set aside to support gays and lesbians afraid to reveal their homosexuality. The students also plan not to speak during the entire school day, Brabson-Halsey said.
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
Thank you, Mark
I met Mark on my recent trip to Miami. Mark is one of those people that, as soon as you meet them, you know they are Good People. Believe me, Good People do not grow on trees. When you meet one, you should be greatful. And so I am. The reason I am thanking Mark is because he sent me a heads up about the HBO documentary: Rosie's Family Cruise.
I am not a big Rosie fan and probably would have passed right over this little gem if Mark hadn't given me a nudge in the right direction. This story about the cruise organized by Rosie's wife, Kelly, in 2004 should be required viewing for all of America....school children, church groups, town meetings....anywhere that people gather. It is a story of America. A story of diversity. A story of love. A story of family. A story of hope.
As different people tell their stories....stories of gay men and women with babies and young children....stories of marriages and commitments....stories of so many different lifestyles....the viewer starts to get a sense of how happy all these people are to be on a cruise that allows them just to be who they are, with their families, without pretense.
The stories that really got to me were the teenage children of these gay parents. These young people are the end products of their parents choices. It is one thing for adults to decide how they want to live their life. What happens when you bring children into that equation?
Funny thing. Children respond to love. They know who loves them; who makes them feel safe. Listen to these young adults talk about their moms and their dads. Hear their experiences growing up with lesbian mothers or gay dads. And then know what real family is about. As one young woman said, (and I paraphrase) 'My dads have overcome so much to be together and have struggled so long with being different, that I know they will always love me and accept me, no matter what.' And isn't that what every child wants? to know that their parents will love them, no matter what?
Rosie's Family Cruise is on HBO's On Demand until May 7th. It will be a trip you won't forget.
Monday, April 10, 2006
Cruising the HuffPo
Almost one year ago, on May 9th, 2005, Arianna Huffington formed a group blog for the purpose of bringing political news of the day from various sources and putting them under one roof. She was laughed at by many in the media business. Well, now she is the one laughing. The HuffPo brings columnists, reviewers, satirists, and just plain old entertainment and gossip mavens to cyberspace with one click. She recognized the power of the Blog and went with it.
Today I found a couple of columns by two of my favorite female columnists that might be of interest:
Ellen Goodman writes for The Boston Globe. This article is a personal view of gay parenting and the Catholic Charities stance on gay adoption:
Taking the gay insults personally
Note: The Boston Globe requires a registration but it's free, so go for it.
Molly Ivans is an independent syndicated columnist who has reported on Texas politics for many years. This article takes a few well aimed pot shots at Tom DeLay and his penchant for using Jesus as an excuse for greed. WWJD?
ETA: I just learned how to name a link instead of just printing the whole web address. Yeah Me!
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
Brokeback Mountain on DVD today!
In honor of Brokeback Mountain's DVD release today, I present to you another fantastic video from youtube.com:
Saturday, April 01, 2006
Presenting Paul and Frank who are Not Gay!
Just two misunderstood best friends in the whole wide world.
Another scintilating movie from YouTube.com