Friday, September 30, 2011

Sarah Palin on Rosh Hashanah

Former half-term Gov. Sarah Palin misses the mark on Rosh Hashanah

"Hi. This is Sarah Palin. Is Senator Lieberman in?"
"No, governor. This is Rosh Hashanah."
"Well, hello, Rosh. Can I leave a message?"

Florida GOP primary moved - chaos affects other states


The Florida GOP has decided to hold it's primary a month earlier than previously authorized, thereby throwing the rest of the early states - Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina - into a turmoil due to specific rules.

GOP officials in the early states — New Hampshire, Iowa, South Carolina and Nevada — delivered strong denunciations of Florida’s leap-frogging act but were coy Friday about when they will announce the dates of their own contests. Still, it’s easy to work backwards from Florida’s Jan. 31 primary to figure out how the new calendar might play out.

Iowa will hold its caucuses the week before the New Hampshire vote. New Hampshire’s constitution requires it votes a week before any other state’s primary. Nevada’s GOP rules require a state caucus on the Saturday after the New Hampshire primary. And South Carolina will hold a primary on a Tuesday or a Saturday, sometime between the Nevada caucus and the Florida primary.

New Hampshire Secretary of State William Gardner speculated this week that he may schedule a primary in December 2011. Gardner said he won’t announce his state’s primary date until next week “at the earliest.”

Read more at Politico

Jeff Conaway death an accident


From TMZ: Jeff Conaway died from multiple causes, from Aortic valve problems to pneumonia - this according to the L.A. County Coroner. And, the Coroner says, his death at 60 was an accident.

Among the causes:

-- Septic Emboli ... an infected arterial blockage
-- Aortic Valve Endocarditis ... heart valve infection
-- Coronary Artery Disease
-- Pneumonia
-- Encephalopathy ... brain disorder resulting from drug overdoses

Sad loss. Terrific talent.

Little brother makes fun of sister dancing/syncing


Little Brother Video Bombs Sister Dancing - Watch MoreFunny Videos

Funniest thing I've seen this week!

Hysterical!

Chris Meloni as "rogue cop" Tony Baloney in "The Vigilogna"


Jon Stewart turned his attention to the "Occupy Wall Street" protests on The Daily Show last night, homing in on infamous pepper spray officer Anthony Bologna, who was caught spraying demonstrators in two videos.

Once the officer's name is revealed, the jokes just write themselves. "Anthony Bologna? You and I both know that guy's name is Tony Baloney. Favorite pasta? Rigatoni. Favorite island? Coney. Favorite southern buffet restaurant? Shoney's."

But the segment really catches fire when Stewart decides Bologna deserves his own crime drama, about a rogue cop who loses his badge and spray cans but brings justice to the streets his own way—one spray at a time.

The "show," called The Vigilogna, stars Fear and Loathing scene-stealer Chris Meloni, who will forever be Law and Order: SVU's Eliot Stabler.

"In a city gone mad," the narrator declares, "Tony Baloney was the fine mist of the law. But then... he went too far. This fall, justice has a first name. It's spelled T-O-N-Y. And it's gonna burn. Chris Melogna (played by Chris Meloni) IS Tony Balgona in The Vigilogna."

"Crime doesn't spray," Melogna intoneys. "But I do."
(via The Gothamist)

Arizona appeals to allow state to drop gay partners healthcare

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer said a federal appeals panel “got it wrong” and is again appealing a court ruling that same-sex partners of state government workers are entitled to the same health care benefits provided to opposite-sex couples.

On Sept. 6, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco upheld a temporary block on a controversial 2009 state law that sought to eliminate health coverage for gay and lesbian domestic partners of Arizona state employees.

The three-member appeals panel said such a law would go against the long-standing constitutional right to equal protection, but now Brewer wants the Court to have a larger panel review the issue.

Legal papers submitted on the governor’s behalf contend that a three-judge panel of the same court got it wrong when it concluded that it is illegal discrimination to provide health care and other benefits to the partners of married workers while refusing to do the same for same-sex couples.

More at LGBTQnation.com

One Life To Live - racier than Chippendales

David Gregory from "One Life To Live" - click to view larger

Every now and then, I'm amazed that what you see on TV is racier than Chippendales.

When Michael became National Press rep for Chippendales, early on he met a bit of resistance by some TV show producers saying "that's too racy for daytime TV."

Fortunately, Michael's good at what he does and in the years he's worked with Chippendales they've appeared on all of the top daytime TV shows like The View, Ellen, Wendy Williams, Tyra and The Today Show.  And that's the short list.  Each of those shows has had the Chippendales back multiple times after seeing how popular the appearances are.

And of course, The Chippendales always know they are on "daytime TV" and wear jeans and act accordingly.  Duh.

But today I came across this pic of a recent screen shot of "One Life To Live" and, while it's sexy, could only think again - racier than Chippendales! Compare the pics and tell me which you think is "racier."  A steam room scene in towels with water pouring down bare chests, or The Chippendales in jeans with the TV show hosts...?


The Chippendales on THE VIEW - click to view larger 
The Chippendales on ELLEN - click to view larger

Friday Funny Photo

Click for larger view

Walmart adds gender identity, expression to non-discrimination policy


Walmart — the world’s biggest retailer and the largest private employer in the U.S. — has added gender identity and expression to its non-discrimination policy.

The company’s “Discrimination and Harassment Prevention Policy” already includes protections based on sexual orientation.

Company spokesperson Phillip Keene did not confirm when the new policy went into effect, only that the change was made “several weeks ago,” reported the Windy City Times.

The Human Rights Campaign praised the news, calling it “good for business.”

“What matters in the workplace is how you do your job, not your gender identity or sexual orientation,” said HRC President Joe Solmonese, in a statement.

“As the nation’s largest private employer, Walmart shows that doing the right thing is also good for business. We urge them to continue to move forward by ensuring all of their LGBT employees receive equal benefits.”

Historically, Walmart has scored poorly on the Human Rights Campaign’s annual Corporate Equality Index, which assesses corporations on more than 30 specific policies and practices covering nearly every aspect of employment for LGBT workers. Last year, Walmart received only 40 out of 100 points, mostly for failing to include gender protections and partner benefits.
(source: LGBTQnation.com)

Serial adulterer Newt Gingrich: "gay marriage is a temporary aberration"


"I think this [gay marriage] is a temporary aberration that will dissipate. I think that it is just fundamentally goes against everything we know." - Newt Gingrich, three time serial adulterer

Mr. Gingrich is hardly in a position to use the words "temporary" and "marriage" in the same sentence.  If anyone can understand the juxtaposition of those two words together, it would be him.

I think it's important to note that, given Mr. Gingrich's lack of commitment to his earlier marriages, "marriage" itself is a "temporary aberration" in his world.  Give it some time.  I'm certain we'll be seeing Mrs. Gingrich #4 anytime now.

Excellent marriage equality video from Australia



Clear, direct and creative.

Love it.

Forward, kids.

Bank of America to charge $5 monthly debit card fee


Seriously - it's time to move to a credit union. Lower fees, better service.

CNN Money: Get ready for a new wave of bank fees. Bank of America will begin charging a $5 monthly fee at the beginning of next year for customers who make debit card purchases.

Whether you use your card for one purchase a month or 20, you will pay $5 per month starting in 2012. It doesn't matter if you select "debit" or "credit" at the point of sale.

Bill Maher - It Gets Better

Al Qaeda’s Anwar al-Awlaki killed in Yemen


Big news today - the death of Al Qaeda’s Anwar al-Awlaki, the radical American-born cleric who was a leading figure in al Qaeda’s affiliate in Yemen.

The Obama administration has confirmed al-Awlaki’s death, and NBC reports that it was a U.S. drone that killed him. Al-Awlaki is be the most prominent Al Qaeda figure to be killed since Osama bin Laden’s death

No president since George H.W. Bush has had more foreign-policy successes happen under his watch than President Obama:

  • The death of bin Laden
  • The dismantling of al Qaeda
  • The ouster of Khaddafy
  • The end of combat operations in Iraq


Yet when you look at polls and Obama’s approval rating, he’s getting almost no credit from the American public, a la Bush 41.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Idina Menzel to tape PBS special in Toronto


From the Toronto Star: Tony-winner Idina Menzel would be filming her PBS special in Toronto on November 17-18 with the Kitchener Waterloo Symphone at Koerner Hall.

“I can’t tell you how excited I am about doing this!” enthuses Menzel from the set of Glee in California, “I’ve been honing this program for over a year and it’s full of things I love singing.”

Fans of the multi-talented performer will be glad to hear that Menzel’s favourites probably coincide with theirs and will, of course, feature songs like “Defying Gravity” from Wicked and “No Day But Today” from Rent.

Information on tickets for all performances will be available shortly by visiting www.IdinaMenzel.com.

The Tony Award winner has had a diverse career on stage and in film, television, and music, recently appearing in the television hit Glee, and is currently on a sold-out tour, performing with leading orchestras around the country. In 2009 Ms. Menzel co-starred with Josh Groban in the concert version of Chess: The Musical, recorded at London's Royal Albert Hall and broadcast on PBS. In December 2005 she completed her role as "Elphaba" in Broadway's Wicked, for which she received a Tony Award for Lead Actress in a Musical and a Drama Desk Award nomination.

Spanish scientists trial promising HIV vaccine


Researchers at the Spanish Superior Scientific Research Council (CSIC) have successfully completed Phase I human clinical trials of a HIV vaccine that came out with top marks after 90% of volunteers developed an immunological response against the virus.

The MVA-B vaccine draws on the natural capabilities of the human immune system and "has proven to be as powerful as any other vaccine currently being studied, or even more", says Mariano Esteban, head researcher from CSIC's National Biotech Centre.
The trial demonstrated how the vaccine stimulates the production of lymphocytes B, which produces HIV attacking antibodies that block the virus from infecting healthy cells.

"MVA-B immune profile meets, initially, the requirements for a promising HIV vaccine," says Esteban. Although it does not remove the virus from the body, the immune response induced by the vaccine could keep the virus under control by destroying the infected cell.

According to CSIC, "if this genetic cocktail passes Phase II and Phase III future clinic trials, and makes it into production, in the future HIV could be compared to herpes virus nowadays".

Phase I clinic trials will also commence with HIV infected volunteers to test its efficiency as a therapeutic vaccine.

Read more at gizmag.com

Ellen Degeneres and Nancy Pelosi discuss booing of gay soldier/DADT

"It's My Party" movie trailer



When Michael was still VP of Publicity at Varese Sarabande Records, the soundtrack to this film came to the label and Michael pushed the label to release the soundtrack to this excellent indie movie by Randal Kleiser.
It's very touching and has an amazing all-star cast including Eric Roberts, Gregory Harrison, Olivia Newton-John, George Segal, Bruce Davison, Marlee Matlin and Lee Grant. I never saw the movie trailer until today.

It's a beautiful movie, and a beautiful soundtrack by Basil Poledouris. I used to play the soundtrack all the time. Thoughtful, sensitive and perfect for the film it's written for.

Synopsis: Eric Roberts portrays a successful architect who throws a farewell party for friends and family after he learns he is losing his hard-fought battle against the AIDS virus in this vibrant film that co-stars Gregory Harrison.

Joe Manganiello photo montage

Click to view larger
Happy Thursday!

Fantastic cover of Adele's "Someone Like You"



The girl is Emily Luther and the boy is Charlie Puth.

He's cute, and her voice is terrific!  You can download this version of the song from iTunes by clicking here.

This is apparently an entry for an "Adele cover song competition" Perez Hilton is doing.

You can click here to send a tweet to Perez to pay attention to this entry.

Anti-gay NC state senator James Forrester falsifies credentials

Pam's House Blend breaks the news today that N.C. State Senator James Forrester, who supports banning marriage equality in North Carolina, not only has publicly put forward false information regarding HIV/AIDS - he has falsely claimed credentials as a Fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine.

Equality supporter Scott Rose has written an open letter to the Senator which, in part, states the following:

"I was dismayed recently to hear your radio interview with Mike Signorile. There is a strong appearance that although you are a licensed physician, you intentionally falsify health care information and health care statistics in a political context in order fraudulently to demonize LGBT human beings and to motivate anti-gay bigots to strengthen the currently pertaining sexual orientation apartheid in our society. Your behavior in that runs counter to medical ethics. And speaking of medical ethics, your online bios claim that you are a Fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine, but today, ACPM officials told me that you are not a member, still less a Fellow, which is their highest level of distinction, and that they would be asking you to remove your phony claim from the internet."

Michael Barry, Executive Director of the American College of Preventive Medicine, responded to Scott Rose in a letter:

"Thanks for bringing this to our attention. The quick answer to your questions is that Dr. Forrester is not, and never has been, a member of ACPM (much less a Fellow, which is our highest designation of membership). However, this is troubling to us, too, that he's apparently claiming to be a Fellow of ACPM, and we would like to know where Dr. Forrester is making these proclamations so that we can approach him and demand that he cease falsely using ACPM credentials in his campaign or wherever else he's using it."

I believe the correct phrase here is  - BUSTED.

Airman Randy Phillips, who came out on youtube, tells his mom he's gay



It's such an awkward conversation to have. And Randy Phillips has the whole conversation here. Good for him.

I was lucky that my father took the news really well, and it was a weight off my shoulders. It made my life better being able to be honest with my family about who I am.

I do remember the only thing my grandmother said was "don't let anyone at work know" - to which I had to explain I worked in musical theater... :)

But it's not such an easy thing for everyone. My husband came out to his parents soon after we met 17 years ago.

We realized we needed to give his parents some time to adjust to the news. I met his mother a couple of years later and she's great. But in 17 years, giving his father time to "adjust," his father has never shown any interest in speaking to or meeting me. I realize it's not my place to force myself into their family, so I continue to wait. 17 years and counting.

I'm very happy Randy Phillips has had the experience he did, and for the rest of his life knows he can move forward with honesty, dignity, and the love and support of his family and friends. This video will let others know that while it can be an uncomfortable conversation, it most often goes much better than we imagine it in our heads.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Jessica Simpson Postpones Wedding to Eric Johnson

Does anyone think it's of interest that she's more concerned
about looking at the camera than the kiss?

Via USmagazine: No race to the altar here!

Jessica Simpson's ex-hubby Nick Lachey remarried in July, but Jessica is in no rush to say "I do" to fiance Eric Johnson. Although it's been over 10 months since Johnson, 32, proposed, insiders tell the new Us Weekly -- on stands Friday -- that all wedding plans have been put on hold.

"Everything is up in the air," a source tells Us. "She can't figure out what kind of day she wants. Some days she wants a big wedding in Hawaii, then other days she wants something closer to home."

But some of the 30-year-old singer's friends fear the delay is due to more than just venue indecision. "She was so gung ho about planning their wedding, and now she's gone dark," says a pal. "She won't commit to a date."

Jessica has had quite the long history of famous men. Click here to see some of the more memorable, or not so memorable.

NJ Gov. Chris Christie keeps saying 'no' to running for Prez



Clearly the bulk of the GOP primary voters are not "thrilled" with their choices of candidates, which must make Mitt Romney grind his teeth at night.

As speculation continues as to whether NJ Governor Chris Christie may or may not go ahead and jump in the race - or be "drafted," this video will clearly provide fodder for the Obama campaign should Christie get in the race after saying over and over again "I'm not ready."

"First, in your heart, you've got to want it more than anything else. I don't want it that badly."

"You have to believe in your heart and your mind that you are ready, and I don't."

Those could come back to haunt him in some strong political ads should he decide to change his mind...

Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher split


In the wake of yet another cheating scandal, Demi Moore has had enough of her toy boy husband Ashton Kutcher's philandering and is ready to call it quits.

According to an exclusive report in Star Magazine, the May to December marriage is over because of Kutcher's infidelities and the couple have been living apart for some time.

Instead of celebrating his sixth wedding anniversary (which was on September 24), the new star of Two and A Half Men spent last Friday flirting with scantily-clad women at Fluxx nightclub in San Diego, the new issue of Star Magazine exclusively reveals, where he looked nothing like a happily-married man.
(via radaronline)

45th Anniversary of Marlo Thomas in "That Girl"


From Marlo Thomas on HuffingtonPost: "I received an email wishing me a happy 45th anniversary the other day and my first thought was, "Phil and I have only been married for 30 years." And then I realized it wasn't my wedding they were talking about -- it was the anniversary of "That Girl."

"Hard to believe now but 45 years ago, my character Ann Marie, was the only girl in town. In this season's television lineup, there are nearly a dozen new shows starring bright, funny young women: "New Girl," "2 Broke Girls," "Whitney," and others. And as they did with Ann Marie, the young women watching today will not only be entertained by these "girls", they'll also think, "Hey, that's me!" Or, " Wow, that could be me!" And that is one of the best things television can do: give people a chance to see themselves transformed."

"Ann Marie seemed like a revolutionary figure at the time but, in truth, every home had a "That Girl" in it. She was the right character for that moment in time. She moved away from the traditional idea of a young woman in the society -- she was independent, living alone, not defined by her family. She was out in the world and working for the life she wanted. She was making her own choices."

Bill Persky said at the time, "'That Girl' threw a hand grenade into the bunker, and all the other female characters walked right through."

"Every generation has it's own grenade throwers. Chris Colfer is one as the scene-stealing Kurt Hummel on Glee -- a character that truly impacts the lives of gay teenagers. And the loving gay couple on Modern Family. These characters show us television's willingness -- however late-coming -- to embrace gay people and their relationships."

"When I think of the 45th anniversary of "That Girl", I like to envision a fabulous dinner party with all the women who followed Ann Marie. Mary Richards would be there, throwing her cap up in the air. Kate & Allie, who represented the first contemporary single moms on TV, would be there, too (they'd have to get a sitter, but still). I can see Ann worrying about Rosanne, who's pretty outspoken and wondering if she'd like anyone. But then sitting her next to Murphy Brown, who's got a few opinions of her own, and watching those two get along great. And then she'd put Rachel from Friends next to Carrie Bradshaw. We'd invite Donald -- but of course, he couldn't stay over. And Mr Big who could."

"What a great celebration it would be. And I know every one of those women would love hanging out with each other. After all, they're all from the same family tree."

I love that you can now buy the series on Amazon. Click here to peruse That Girl - Season One


Video: Hunter Parrish and Broadway cast of GODSPELL



From Playbill.com: Hunter Parrish, Telly Leung, Lindsay Mendez and the rest of the cast of the upcoming Broadway revival of Godspell gathered Sept. 26 for a special preview of the show.

Along with performances from the New Testament musical, we hear from the show's Academy and Grammy Award winning composer/lyricist Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin) and some of the performers about what makes this production of special.

Godspell begins previews at Circle in the Square Theatre Oct. 13.

Chaz Bono gets through Week 2 of Dancing With The Stars


Chaz Bono made through Week 2 of "Dancing With The Stars"  - although with a painful knee injury that looks to make for tough going ahead.

But Chaz didn't complain and worked like a trooper.  As any professional dancer will tell you, this is the life.

Good for Chaz and Lacey!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

VP Joe Biden Calls Booing Of Gay Soldier 'Reprehensible'



From Towleroad: The boos during the question from the gay soldier during last week's GOP debate are still resonating.

Today, VP Joe Biden appeared on The View and called the booing "reprehensible" and Joy Behar scolded the panel for not speaking up or chastising the audience.

Meanwhile, the Democratic National Committee is making hay of the incident in a new attack ad against the GOP.

"L Word" actress removed from Southwest Airlines flight

Yesterday much news was made about musician and "L Word" actress Leisha Haley being escorted off of Southwest Airlines for kissing her 'Uh Huh Her' bandmate and girlfriend Camila Grey. Hailey and Grey have released a formal statement saying they were told Southwest was a "family airline" when they were escorted off for "one, modest kiss". They say they will be filing a formal complaint.

Hailey and Grey's statement:
"We have always promoted tolerance, openness and equality both as a band and as individuals. We both come from loving homes where our parents not only love and accept us, but are also proud of who we are. We believe everyone has the right to live openly in this society as equals. In no way were our actions on Southwest Airlines excessive, inappropriate or vulgar. We want to make it clear we were not making out or creating any kind of spectacle of ourselves, it was one, modest kiss. We are responsible adult women who walk through the world with dignity. We were simply being affectionate like any normal couple. We were on the airplane less than 5 minutes when all was said and done. We take full responsibility for getting verbally upset with the flight attendant after being told it was a “family airline.” We were never told the reason the flight attendant approached us, we were only scolded that we “needed to be aware that Southwest Airlines was a family oriented airline.”

"No matter how quietly homophobia is whispered, it doesn’t make it any less loud. You can’t whisper hate. We ask this airline to teach their employees to not discriminate against any couple, ever, regardless of their own beliefs. We want to live in a society where if your loved one leans over to give you an innocent kiss on an airplane it's not labeled as "excessive or not family oriented" by a corporation and it’s employees. We find it very disturbing that the same airline who lauds itself as being LGBT friendly has twisted an upsetting incident that happened into our behavior being "too excessive." The above is not an apology and we are in the process of filing a formal complaint with the airline. We hope that when all is said and done a greater tolerance without prejudice will evolve."

Southwest released this statement yesterday:
"Initial reports indicate that we received several passenger complaints characterizing the behavior as excessive. Our crew, responsible for the comfort of all Customers on board, approached the passengers based solely on behavior and not gender. The conversation escalated to a level that was better resolved on the ground, as opposed to in flight. We regret any circumstance where a passenger does not have a positive experience on Southwest and we are ready to work directly with the passengers involved to offer our heartfelt apologies for falling short of their expectations."

Southwest released a new statement late today, following the release of Hailey's statement:
"Additional reports from our Employees and Customers onboard flight 2274 during a stop in El Paso on Sunday now confirm profane language was being used loudly by two passengers.  At least one family who was offended by the loud profanity moved to another area of the cabin.  Although we have reports of what Customers characterize as an excessive public display of affection, ultimately their aggressive reaction led to their removal from the aircraft.  We do not tolerate discrimination against anyone for any reason.  In this situation, their removal was directly and solely related to the escalated conversation that developed onboard the aircraft."

"Our tenets of inclusion and celebration of diversity among our Customers and Employees-including those in the LGBT communities-anchor our Culture of mutual respect and following the Golden Rule.   The more than 100 million people who fly Southwest each year reflect the great diversity of our country and our Company - and ALL are valued and welcome.  In fact, we've been recognized as a leader in diversity throughout our 40 years of service."

"Our Customer Advocacy Team reached out to extend goodwill and a full refund for an experience that fell short of the passengers' expectation."

Stay tuned for further developments in this "she said/she said" situation...

New Zogby poll: Herman Cain leads


Click to see larger.

Thoughts?

A bad ass Olivia Newton-John in "A Few Best Men" trailer




The trailer for Olivia Newton-John's upcoming movie "A Few Best Men" - directed by Stephan Elliott (Priscilla Queen of the Desert) and also starring Xavier Samuel (Twilight) - was released and this certainly isn't 'Sandy' from "GREASE."

Olivia literally swings from the chandeliers and slams a bedroom door to do a few lines of cocaine in a funny bit.

From the producers of "Death at a Funeral," the film is about a groom and his three best men who come from the UK to Australia for his wedding. It's the Aussie answer to "The Hangover" and "Bridesmaids" (and happens to feature "Bridesmaids" scene-stealer Rebel Wilson too).

You can see screen captures of from the trailer below.






Trailer for new Chris Evans movie: "Puncture"



I like the first 22 seconds...

:)

DNC ad: "Not One Candidate"



I hope people see this. I had the exact same thoughts.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Senate Reaches Deal to Avert Government Shutdown


From the NYTimes: The Senate reached a tentative spending deal Monday night that would head off a threatened government shutdown over the handling of disaster aid, Senate officials said.

The apparent breakthrough came after the Federal Emergency Management Agency indicated it had enough money to squeak through the end of the fiscal year Friday night, eliminating one of the main points of partisan contention: whether to offset a quick infusion of funds to the agency with cuts elsewhere as House Republicans had insisted. Democrats in both the House and Senate had resisted that approach.

Under the agreement, funding for government agencies — including FEMA — that is due to run out at midnight on Friday, would be extended for six weeks at a level set in this year’s debt limit deal.

But that legislation will still require the approval of the House, which is in recess this week with lawmakers scattered around the country. Senate leaders are hoping that the House will agree to adopt the stop-gap measure in a pro forma session later this week without all its members being called back. The Senate was also going to pass a measure that would extend spending by one week to buy time for a longer agreement.

“We have basically resolved this issue,” Senator Harry Reid, the majority leader, said on the floor Monday night.

New Broadway "Follies" building box office


The new revival of "Follies" grossed more than $1.12 million last week at the box office. This represents the highest one week box office gross ever for a Broadway production with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim.

From NYTimes: Last week, with no more complimentary tickets to give away to theater critics and other media (as is customarily done before and soon after opening night), the “Follies” producers were able to sell their best orchestra seats at full price. They also had a batch of superlatives from critics to highlight, particularly for the performances of Bernadette Peters, Jan Maxwell, Danny Burstein, and Ron Raines.

The producers of “Follies” have already announced a three-week extension for the limited engagement, which is now scheduled to close on Jan. 22, 2012, and which they hope will give the show enough performances to make money on Broadway for the first time.

Even more, the gorgeous production is going to be available on CD soon. It's now available on pre-order from Amazon now! Click here for more info.

Happy birthday Olivia Newton-John


For your entertainment, the entire uncut finale of her cult movie "Xanadu"

As many of you know, I'm not only a fan, but I count Olivia as a dear friend.  Like a fine wine, she only gets better with age.

At 63, she continues to make fantastic music, campaign to save the environment and is helping to build the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre in Australia.

Bravo!

With Olivia during rehearsals for her "Grace and Gratitude" concert I staged for her in March 2010

Video flashback: Farrah and Joe Namath commercial



Both were huge sex symbols. Easy to see why.

TIME Magazine's "Officer X" comes out


On May 25, Time magazine introduced the world to “Officer X,” a closeted, active service member who would blog anonymously about the DADT repeal until it got repealed.

Well DADT has been repealed, so who is he?

It’s 1st Lieutenant Karl Johnson of the Air Force.

In his coming-out article Johnson said, “Putting aside personal angst, there was the risk [that DADT] posed to our national security; with Don’t Ask Don’t Tell ended, the possibility of extortion evaporates. Our nation will be stronger because of the policy’s demise.”

His posts have been thoughtful, inspiring and courageous.

Thank you Lt. Karl Johnson.

Video: "When Kurt Met Blaine"



For all the GLEE fans who imagine a movie version of Kurt and Blaine's relationship...

Very creative.

Quote for the day: President Obama

"I mean has anybody been watching the debates lately? You've got a governor whose state is on fire denying climate change. It's true. You've got audiences cheering at the prospect of somebody dying because they don't have healthcare. And booing a service member in Iraq because they're gay. That's not reflective of who we are."

- Barack Obama at Democratic fundraiser

Ruth Buzzi wishes Olivia Newton-John "Happy Birthday"


In addition to being a comic legend, well respected by her peers and clearly an upbeat positive woman, Ruth Buzzi continually has one of the most fun Twitter accounts to follow.

If you don't follow her yet - start.  She has some great stuff - sometimes funny, sometimes just plain positive.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Who increased the federal debt the most?

Click to see larger view

From the U.S. Treasury Department.

Now - any questions...?

Olivia Newton-John on "TI LASCIO UNA CANZONE" in Italy



How fantastic does Olivia look and sound at 63? This is a true legend.

Cute bit with the kids too.

Fab.

Rick Perry dogged on Fox News panel



Now, when FOX News thinks you didn't do well - "He really did throw up all over himself" - you know you didn't do well.

And when Herman Cain wins the Florida straw poll, you've just got to take a time out and ponder where you went wrong...

Poor Gov. Bangbang...

Alec Baldwin opens the new season of "Saturday Night Live" with spoof of GOP debates



Very funny.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Trailer: "Joyful Noise" with Dolly Parton and Queen Latifah




Two choir members have differing opinions on how to win the national choir competition.

Joyful Noise movie hits theaters on January 13, 2012.

Joyful Noise tells the story of an unlikely partnership between two strong-minded women (Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton) who are forced to work together to save a small town Gospel Choir after budget cuts threaten to shut them down.

Director: Todd Graff
Cast: Queen Latifah, Dolly Parton, Keke Palmer, Jeremy Jordan, Courtney B. Vance, Dexter Darden, Kris Kristofferson

Herman Cain wins Florida straw poll

From the StarTribune: Business entrepreneur Herman Cain shocked the political world by winning the Florida GOP's influential presidential straw poll Saturday, while Minnesota Republican Michele Bachmann finished dead last in the field of eight candidates.

Cain, the former Godfather's Pizza CEO who appears to have caught fire in recent weeks, topped the GOP field with 37.1 percent of the 2,657 votes cast.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry, the current leader in most polls, finished second with 15.4 percent of the delegates' votes in Florida, edging out former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who won 14 percent.

Michele Bachmann's poor showing in Florida - receiving only 40 ballots, or 1.51 percent of the vote, seemed to further diminish the fast-waning luster of her campaign.

Unlike the Ames Straw Poll in Iowa, nearly all candidates running were included on the Florida ballot, and delegates representing counties throughout the state paid their own way to the event. The last three Florida GOP straw poll winners have become their party's nominee.

Among the rest of the field, Texas Congressman Ron Paul, a perennial favorite among grass-roots GOP activists, came in fifth behind former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, each receiving a little more than 10 percent of the vote.

Former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich finished sixth at 8.4 percent, and former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman finished seventh with 2.2 percent.

Joe Manganiello to appear on "Two and a Half Men" in October


From EWTwo and a Half Men may have found a way to build upon its stellar premiere week ratings: Alcide is coming to Malibu!

With Manganiello at 6'4", I'd say this brings the cast size of the hit sitcom to "Four Men."

The True Blood star Joe Manganiello will make an appearance in the Oct. 24 episode of the CBS comedy. He’ll play the smoldering hot boyfriend (as if he could play anything less) of Bridget, the ex-wife of Walden (Ashton Kutcher). Bridget will be portrayed by Judy Greer, who makes her first appearance on Monday.

Manganiello just wrapped his fourth season of True Blood but he’s definitely staying ripped to play "Big Dick Richie" in Steven Soderbergh’s movie about male strippers.

He’s also set to star opposite his old school pal Matt Bomer in an episode of USA’s White Collar that will air in January.

Kids at the door


So, whenever I head out to Michael's office (which is in a casita in front of the house) the dogs race me to the door and I have to move fast so they don't run out into the front yard - although most of them are terrified of the "big, bad world out there" so they never get farther than about six feet from the door before they freeze and head back in the house.

Anyway, no matter how long I'm out in Michael's office, when I do come in they are always at the door waiting.  I used to think they hear me approach the door and come running, but John - Michael's associate - took this picture, and apparently they stay at the door however long it takes for me to come back in...

I am loved.

(Or at least I'm the one who gives out treats most often...)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Michael Caprio honored at St. Therese Center's Annual "Circle Of Roses" Gala 2011


Tonight at the Riviera Hotel, my husband Michael Caprio will be honored with others in our community for the support and service he volunteers to this amazing organization.

I'm very proud of Michael. He's one of the hardest working people I know, but never so busy to not help promote the St. Therese Center's work and mission. Throughout the year, and indeed for many years, he spends many hours promoting and getting the word out about the Center's many events.  He also has been instrumental in getting others, like Broadway's Brent Barrett and the Chippendales among others, to participate and donate their time and energy to this great charity.

The St. Therese Center, named after Saint Therese of Lisieux, is a Catholic ministry that welcomes and serves people of all faiths and extends the Lord's healing to all persons infected and affected by HIV/AIDS.

Emphasizing wellness, Saint Therese Center reaches out to those touched by HIV/AIDS to provide spiritual, physical and emotional support, educational and social services in the spirit of love and compassion.

If you have time tonight, come to the Riviera Hotel on the Strip, donate to the gala dinner and find out more about this terrific organization. Drinks are at 6PM, dinner around 7PM.

Click here for more info about the Saint Therese Center.

UPDATE: Thank you for everyone who came out to support the St. Therese Center and celebrate Michael being honored for his contributions.  Especially Gordon Miles, Alex Chavez, John Genovese, Joey Gonnello, Ben Lemke, and Chris Saldana.  Much fun was had at the table, and it was a great night for the St. Therese Center.




Happy Friday!


Any questions?

DOJ: Rick Perry's TX Redistricting Plan Purposefully Discriminated Against Minorities


From TalkingPointsMemo: The Justice Department said late Friday that based on their preliminary investigation, a congressional redistricting map signed into law by Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry appears to have been "adopted, at least in part, for the purpose of diminishing the ability of citizens of the United States, on account of race, color, or membership in a language minority group, to elect their preferred candidates of choice to Congress."

DOJ's Civil Rights Division is specifically contesting the changes made to Texas Districts 23 and 27, which they say would not provide Hispanic citizens with the ability to elect candidates of their choice.

Read more here.

Victor Garber - the new voice of "Charlie's Angels"


Victor Garber has been named the new voice of the boss on Charlie’s Angels, USA Today reports.

The 62-year-old actor, who you might recognize from Alias, replaces the earlier announced Robert Wagner in the role.

In the original series, Charlie was voiced by John Forsythe.

Charlie’s Angels, starring Minka Kelly, Annie Ilonzeh, and Rachael Taylor, premiered last night on ABC.

Anyone see it? Thoughts?


Hey Europe - ready for The Chippendales?


The Chippendales are heading to Europe!  Click here to see dates (and more on the men of Chippendales).

And of course, those of you in Las Vegas can continue to see The Chippendales at their flagship theater at the Rio Hotel and Casino.

Video: GOP Debate Crowd Boos Soldier Serving in Iraq



During the FOX News/Google GOP presidential debate, a YouTube question regarding 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' from Stephen Hill, a soldier serving in Iraq, was directed at Rick Santorum.

Asked Hill: “Do you plan to circumvent the progress that has been made for gay and lesbian soldiers in the military?”

In a disgusting display of disrespect, Hill - an active soldier serving in Iraq - was booed by members of the audience at the debate.

Answered Santorum:

"Any type of sexual activity has absolutely no place in the military. And the fact that they are making it a point to include it as a provision within the military - that we are going to recognize a group of people and give them a special privilege, I think tries to inject social policy into the military and the military's job is to defend our country. We need to give the military, which is all volunteer, the ability to do so in a way that is most efficient and protective of our men and women in uniform and I believe this undermines that ability."

Megyn Kelly followed up: "So what would you do with soldiers like Stephen Hill. Now he's out. What would you do as president?"

Said Santorum: "What we're doing right now is playing social experimentation with our military right now, and that's tragic. Going forward we would reinstitute that policy..."

In addition to the disrespect shown to an active US soldier serving overseas, Santorum makes the odd statement that "any type of sexual activity has absolutely no place in the military." So I'm guessing he feels no soldier - gay or straight - has the right to have ANY sex while in the military. Also, he refers to allowing gay and lesbian citizens the right that all heterosexual citizens have as a "special privilege." I'm not sure how more backward that comment could be. Allowing all citizens the SAME rights is hardly doling out 'special privileges.'

Notice not ONE of the candidates on that stage defended the soldier from those in the crowd booing.

One more thing - imagine how FOX News would play out the scenario of a Democratic crowd booing a US soldier. Think about that.
(via towleroad)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Reva Rice "Life Is Just A Bowl Of Cherries"

video

Reva Rice, current star of "Vegas the Show" in Las Vegas, stops the evening with her rendition of "Life Is Just A Bowl of Cherries" at Jim Caruso's Cast Party in Las Vegas with musical director and co-hort Billy Stritch. Btw, this was at about 1AM after two performances of "Vegas The Show."

Jim Caruso’s Cast Party is a wildly popular weekly soiree that brings a sprinkling of Broadway glitz and urbane wit to the legendary Birdland in New York City every Monday night. Now occasionally in Las Vegas, Jim continues his cool cabaret night-out enlivened by a hilariously impromptu variety show. Showbiz superstars hit the stage alongside up-and-comers, serving up jaw-dropping music and general razzle-dazzle.

Miss Coco Peru does Vegas!


The legendary Miss Coco Peru is coming to Sin City - at the one and only Onyx Theatre!

Miss Coco got her start as a downtown favorite in the cabaret world of NYC after writing, producing, directing, and starring in “Miss Coco Peru in My Goddamn Cabaret” nearly 20 years ago.

On screen, Miss Coco is best known for her roles in Jim Fall's Fineline feature film, Trick (Sundance 1999) and Richard Day's IFC feature length comedy Girls Will Be Girls.(Sundance 2002) For this film Coco shared the Best Actress Award with his two co-stars Jeffery Roberson and Jack Plotnick at the HBO Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen as well as the Best Actor Award at Outfest Film Festival.

Other film appearances include To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar, Nick and Jane, and Straight-Jacket.

Coco has appeared on TV in Arrested Development, Twins, Will and Grace, New York Undercover, Showtime's Rude Awakening, Bravo’s Boy Meets Boy, Bravo’s Sexiest Moments in Film, Bravo’s Welcome to the Parker, and in an Orbitz commercial that was nominated for a GLAAD Media Award.

Coco has her very own half-hour LOGO comedy special taped as part of the “Wisecrack” series. The episode airs regularly and is available on iTunes! She recently followed up this show with an hour-long LOGO special called “One Night Stand-up – DRAGTASTIC."

This is going to be an event you don't want to miss. Buy your tickets now before they're all gone, and join us for Coco's limited Sin City engagement!

Performance Dates:
Friday - September 23, 2011 at 08:00 PM - Reserve C Seating
Saturday - September 24, 2011 at 08:00 PM - Reserve C Seating
Sunday - September 25, 2011 at 07:00 PM - Reserve C Seating

Located near the famous Las Vegas Strip, The Onyx Theatre is Las Vegas'
leading alternative theatrical and performance space for world-class and local artists.

Chris Matthews: Gov. Rick Perry and "appeasement"


I completely agree with Chris Matthews on this point.

Quoting Chris Matthews: "At this very moment of national challenge, with the president doing what every friend of Israel -- left, right and center -- understands he needed to do, this person from Texas, this foreign policy ingenue, spotted his chance and he showed up in New York to make his diplomatic debut."

"Mr. Perry, you did our president a disservice, our country a dishonor today. You showed that you do not understand the role of the American presidency in our national life. When a president acts to defend the United States, in this case on principle as well as national interest, we should all stand behind him."

"If you don`t get that, you don`t get us -- much less the job of representing us on the world stage which the president did so well and so courageously today."

AutoTuneTheNews: "Reality Hits You Hard Bro..."



The Gregory Brothers take actual news casts, auto-tune and edit to create these hysterical musical concoctions.

Find more at www.youtube.com/autotunethenews

Jon Stewart campaigns for "endangered millionaires"


Jon Stewart is so hysterically funny. There's a reason why his show has won 8 Emmy Awards in a row.

On Wednesday, Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart asked viewers to help save these “endangered” millionaires.

“Bill [O'Reilly] is just standing up for a shrinking, exploited minority,” the comedy central host noted. “The super rich will go extinct. We’d add them to the endangered species list but you know how much they despise government regulation.”

“Every day America loses more and more millionaires to abusive individual and corporate tax rates. Their habitats are slowly disappearing, their watering holes drying up. If we don’t act quickly, these once plentiful creatures will be relegated to zoos and heartbreaking documentaries… Will you be an angel for a helpless multi-millionaire?”

Watch this video from Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, broadcast Sept. 21, 2011.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Gay porn star Ryan Idol convicted of attempted murder

Ryan Idol now

Gay porn star Ryan Idol, aka Marc Anthony Donais, was convicted of attempted murder on Tuesday by a Sacramento Superior Court jury.

Donais, 45, was accused of using a toilet tank lid to batter his ex-girlfriend in the head in an attack at the woman's home on Sept. 5, 2009. The adult film star, who identifies as bisexual although he performed in gay porn, and the woman had broken up before the incident.

During the trial, Donais testified that he thought his ex-girlfriend had a knife when they were in the bathroom, where she was taking a bath. He said he hit the woman in self-defense. Jurors, however, didn't buy his argument.

Donais got his first big break when he appeared as the "Man of the Month" centerfold in the Playgirl issues of February 1989. He was considered a major gay porn star from 1990 to 1996, when he retired. His X-rated film titles include "Idol Eyes," "Idol Worship," "Idle Thoughts," "Idol Country" and "Idol In The Sky."

In 1999, Idol starred in the play Making Porn. Idol next played "Bill Tom" in the gay love story Scent of Rain, written by Mark Dunn, for which he was lauded for "continu[ing] to establish himself as a capable actor". Idol made his Broadway debut when he played the "Crisco Patron" in the Roundabout Theater Company's 2007 revival of Terrence McNally's The Ritz.
(via sdgln.com)

Ryan Idol - in bygone days

Airman Randy Phillips, who came out on youtube, now on ABC



ABC and the entire world has picked up on this incredibly moving story that happened just hours after DADT was officially repealed.

I'm posting mainly because this video has subtitles so you can truly understand the exchange between father and son.

Randy Phillips is lucky to have a dad who not only taught his son dignity, but the father is clearly a straight-up great dad in his complete lack of hesitation in telling his son he will always love him.

Waaay cool - "Sleepbox" for airport travelers


I love that the video (above) is silent, so no need for language or translation. I would totally use one of these if I had a lengthy layover between flights.

The Sleepbox, designed by Russian architecture and design firm Arch Group, is a rental sleeping chamber designed to populate airports and other transportation hubs in lieu of proper hotel rooms. Moscow's Sheremetyevo International Airport has installed some trial units, of a "hostel edition" design.



The rather bare-bones "hostel edition" sleeps two in a bunkbed configuration, has its own ventilation system and provides power and lighting, but lacks the wi-fi, internal vending machine and alarm clock of the standard unit. See pics below of standard edition.



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