His life’s work has been, in one form or another, the telling of stories.
R. J. Moeller
More than simply getting older, Jerry Seinfeld has become wiser.
The series unnecessarily seeks to drive a wedge between science and faith.
The Millennials have a wonderful opportunity to be another Beat Generation, while putting their own unique spin on the world.
Ashley E. McGuire
In a dark room somewhere, a Samsung executive was cackling an evil laugh.
Thu. March 6
It’s that time of year again. Women everywhere seem to be pregnant. Actually, that seems to be a year-round thing. Women being pregnant, that is. A friend of mine recently asked about pregnancy etiquette. What’s okay to say and ask a pregnant woman, and what’s not? Excellent question. As someone who recently went through pregnancy, and half of whose friends seem to be pregnant at any given time, here’s a suggested list of do’s and don’ts.
DO ask a pregnant woman, “How have you been feeling?” Let women answer that with as little or as much detail as they care to. Some women like to offer the gory details about frequency of losing breakfast and hours slept, foods that revolt them, food that allures them. But some women have it tame, or are simply more private, and might offer you a mere, “Oh fine, I’ve…
Wed. March 5
Terry Teachout at the Wall Street Journal poses a very good question: Do artists have a responsibility to protest against moral injustice?
He was asking in reference to two internationally famous conductors, neither of whom has accepted Teachout’s challenge: Venezuelan Gustavo Dudamel and Russian Valery Gergiev.
Dudamel, the music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and an alumnus of El Sistema, Venezuela’s public music-education program says that being a musician exempts him from any specific responsibility towards the people of Venezuela, who are suffering under the violent repression of President Nicolas Maduro. “I’m an artist, and an artist should act for everybody…. I cannot allow El Sistema to become a casualty of politics. Regardless of political or public pressure, I will continue this work in Venezuela and throughout the world.”
Then there is Gergiev, who is a supporter of Vladimir Putin – the Russian leader stomping all…
Wed. March 5
Upworthy, the delivery system for progressive agendas masked as inspirational click-bait, recently posted a video with the title, “Baby Showers Usually Lead with “It’s a Girl!” or “It’s a Boy!” Here’s Why That’s a Problem.” It claims that such a joyful announcement is the beginning of gender stereotypes that “don’t have a happy ending.” Here’s why that message is a problem.
Produced by The Representation Project, which aims to “expose injustices created by gender stereotypes,” the video begins by suggesting that celebrating a birth with “It’s a boy!” or “It’s a girl!” somehow sets the child on the path toward one of two inevitable futures: violent machismo for males and sexual objectification for females. Dressing the baby in pink or blue apparently locks her or him into one of these two gender-restricted destinies. Praising a girl’s prettiness or a boy’s athletic prowess condemns them to…
Wed. March 5
I went to see the new Jesus movie – Son of God – over the weekend and have been torn about what sort of review I should post in this space. On the one hand, I’m a committed Christian who relishes any opportunity my faith gets on the national pop-culture stage. But on the other hand, like George Washington and his cherry tree, I cannot tell a lie when I am confronted with sub-par storytelling.
Young, religious conservatives like myself want to support their side, but many of us are tired of having to pretend that we enjoy everything our elders produce. We like good stories, compelling acting, and perhaps a little artistic flair for good measure now and again. But we also (rightly) feel an allegiance to those of good will who create art with the stated intent of furthering the message of where our hope comes from.
Tue. March 4
Ellen DeGeneres, host of the Academy Awards on Sunday, made a sarcastic joke during her opening monologue about the level of education in Hollywood: “I did a little bit of research and between all the nominees here tonight, you’ve made 1,400 films,” pausing before adding, “and you’ve gone to a total of six years of college. I’m kidding. Kids, stay in school.”
With a small amount of Internet research on the top five individual categories—25 nominees for Actor, Supporting Actor, Actress, Supporting Actress, and Director—it’s clear she was kidding. This year’s nominees are no dummies: Seven nominees of the 25 I’ve reviewed have graduated college from a traditional college or university, four of whom received degrees in a liberal arts degree not related to entertainment or acting (one in Philosophy; two in English; and one, a director, who earned a double degree in Spanish and History). Of the…
Tue. March 4
Is nastiness more dramatically compelling than niceness? I wondered about that recently as I considered my TV watching habits. A number of my regular TV dramas have been on an extended winter break, and their absence has not made my heart grow fonder. In fact, I’ve realized that I can live quite comfortably without them.
While I’ve regularly watched Scandal eager to learn the next plot twist, I haven’t missed the gratuitous torture scenes, Fitz and Mellie’s maintaining one of the world’s iciest marriages, or Olivia’s suffering as she pines for a man she can never have (at least, not while he’s still president). On Grey’s Anatomy, I’ve waited for April and Jackson to reunite, but I haven’t missed seeing gory accident victims or the combustion of Meredith and Cristina’s friendship. As for Revenge, must the characters always be cruel to one another? Daniel’s sterilizing Emily post-wedding without her…
Tue. March 4
“When you’ve got God, you’ve got a friend.”
These aren’t words from a pastor on Sunday morning at Church. They’re from actor Matthew McConaughey who quoted the late Charlie Laughton upon winning Best Actor at the 86th Academy Awards. The 44-year-old native Texan bested Leonardo DiCaprio, Christian Bale, Bruce Dern, and Chiwetel Ejiofor for his performance as HIV sufferer Ron Woodroof in Dallas Buyers Club.
Upon taking the stage, he delivered the expected “thank yous” to the Academy and to his DBC colleagues – Jared Leto, Jennifer Garner and Jean-Marc Vallée.
But then things took an unexpected turn when he said, “There are three things that I need each day. One of them is something to look up to. Another is something to look forward to. And another is someone to chase.”
McConaughey said that he looks up to God because, in his words, “He has…
Mon. March 3
Last night Ellen DeGeneres hosted the 86th Academy Awards on ABC, and it seemed that she, too, felt she needed to play a part – that of unkind comedienne. Throughout the years and no matter the forum – sitcom, stand-up, or talk show – she has offered audiences a welcome diversion from the trials of real life, through her silliness, physical comedy, and ability to be joyfully optimistic. Last night, she offered nothing of the sort. She vacillated between unkindness and dullness. Perhaps her toned-down approach was in reaction to tastelessness of years’ past, but it felt unoriginal and stale.
Willa Paskin at Slate commented:
Ellen DeGeneres’ performance as host was a kind of low-key reaction to MacFarlane and even Hathaway-Franco and the Academy’s every other year interest in going in a riskier direction. Ellen is not an offensive persona; she is safe hands. And if her performance was surprisingly, maybe even overly…
Mon. March 3
The four fashion capitals of the world – London, Paris, Milan and New York – have concluded their respective fashion weeks that showcase upcoming fall 2014 styles.
To the lay observer, these shows may seem outright ridiculous. For example, who would actually buy one of Jeremy Scott’s McDonald’s-inspired designs showcased at the Moschino show in Milan?
What woman outside of the Arctic would wear Jenny Packham’s “Muzzy”- or “Where The Wild Things Are”-inspired fur coat?
How about Joshua Aponte’s Caterpillar-inspired coat?
With the exception of Lady Gaga, the answer is “no one.”
So, what’s the point of “Fashion Week?” And more importantly, why should we care about it?
The impractical attire makes a fashion show just that – a show. Like actors in a Broadway musical who exaggerate their gestures and articulate their recited…
Mon. March 3
“Gratitude is not only the greatest of the virtues but the parent of all others.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero (106 BC – 43 BC)
Los Angeles experienced flash floods over the weekend heading into Sunday night’s Oscar ceremony, and I’m sure some were convinced that someone was tampering with the rainwater: Last night’s Oscars ceremony was inspiring to watch. The event played host to some of the cleverest, sincerest, and, in my opinion, most grateful acceptance speeches of all time. This, of course, is not always the case.
Hollywood acceptance speeches have seemed, for some time, to represent more of a burden than an opportunity to many winners. Even the show’s producers went so far as to limit speeches to 45 seconds starting in 2010 in order to eliminate what one producer termed “the single most hated thing on the show.”
Indeed, early Sunday morning, the New York…
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From The Daily Beast:
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From Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook, Founder of LeanIn,…CONTINUE READING >
From Dana Reinhardt at Tickld:
His name is Robert Downey…CONTINUE READING >