Monday, May 29, 2017

New Music: Martin Garrix & Troye Sivan "There For You"

Earlier this week, DJ/producer Martin Garrix and Troye Sivan released their latest collaboration, “There For You.”

Billboard's take on the track:

The two 21-year-olds take on San Francisco in the highly-stylize clip. Sivan is adorable and endearing as he sings about how fake the world and everyone in it can feel. Sometimes, you just need a good friend, but good friends are made through actions, not just words. Martin Garrix is the friend he needs, giving his vulnerable vocals a pop-colored backbone ready for radio takeover.

“There For You” has a cute hook that shows Garrix' future bass obsession isn't quite finished. This is one bubbly beat that won't let you down. Catch the feels for yourself below.

Trump Finally Addresses Two Portland Heroes Calling The Attacks "Unacceptable"

After three days of silence, President Trump finally "spoke out" via Twitter about the deaths of two men who defended teenagers from a known white supremacist in Portland.

According to Portland police, two men were killed and another was wounded after 35-year old Jeremy Joseph Christian began yelling hate speech at two women, one of whom was wearing a hijab.

The president's tweet read, "The violent attacks in Portland on Friday are unacceptable. The victims were standing up to hate and intolerance. Our prayers are w/ them."

Interestingly, the message was posted to his official @potus account, not his personal account (@realDonaldTrump) which has almost twice the followers.

Many noted the tweet was sent out at 10:51AM this morning while he was attending Memorial Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetary, so it's clear he didn't write the post himself.

Joe Biden Officiates DNC Staffer's Wedding

Over the weekend, former Vice President Joe Biden officiated the wedding of Henry Muñoz, the Finance Chair for the Democratic National Committee, and his husband Kyle Ferari.

Actress Melanie Griffith captured the moment for Instagrammers with the caption, “My dearest friends Henry Munoz and Kyle Ferari were married today by VP Joe Biden. Wishing them everlasting love and a joyous life journey!”

This isn’t the first time Biden has officiated a same-sex wedding. You may recall last August genial Joe married White House staffers Brian Mosteller and Joe Mahshie.

Biden shared the happy news on Twitter at the time, writing, “Proud to marry Brian and Joe at my house. Couldn’t be happier, two longtime White House staffers, two great guys.”

Happy Memorial Day!

Hope everyone has a great Memorial Day today, and I hope that everyone takes time out to remember why we celebrate this day as a nation.

It's not "National BBQ Day" you know.

Think of those we've lost who stood up for, and made possible, our freedoms and liberty here in the US.

A few facts about Memorial Day:

• Memorial Day is a United States federal holiday which occurs every year on the final Monday of May.

• Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces, formerly known as Decoration Day.

• Memorial Day typically marks the start of the summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.

• Memorial Day is not to be confused with Veterans Day; Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving, while Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans.

For some patriotic Memorial Day entertainment, check out PBS' National Memorial Day Concert here.

The all-star lineup for the event includes: distinguished American leader General Colin L. Powell, USA (Ret.); world-renowned four-time Grammy Award-winning classical superstar Renée Fleming; multi-platinum recording artist and star of television, film and the Broadway stage Vanessa Williams; country music superstar Scotty McCreery; Grammy nominated, multi-platinum selling artist John Ondrasik of Five for Fighting; Broadway and television star Christopher Jackson; distinguished actress Ana Ortiz; and many more in performance with the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of top pops conductor Jack Everly.

Just Because: Nyle DiMarco

How Nyle DiMarco is spending his Memorial Day ;)

And by the way, in case you were wondering how to say "Happy Memorial Day" in ASL, Nyle's got you covered.

Dan Rather To Trump: "What A President Says Can Set The Tone For The Nation At Large"

Dan Rather

While Donald Trump seems to have time to address any "fake news" story he hears about via Twitter, one topic the Trumpster has not touched on was the killing of two men who defended two teenage girls from an extreme racist in Portland.

Many say Trump hasn't spoken on the subject because this violence was "racist on Muslim" based, not the other way around.

As the nation continues to wait for the president to acknowledge the tragedy, iconic newsman Dan Rather pens this open letter to Trump via his Facebook page:

Dear President Trump,

Their names were Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche and Ricky John Best. One was a recent college graduate. The other was an army veteran and father of four. I wish we would hear you say these names, or even just tweet them. They were brave Americans who died at the hands of someone who, when all the facts are collected, we may have every right to call a terrorist. A third brave man, Micah David-Cole Fletcher, was wounded in the knife attack.

This story may not neatly fit into a narrative you pushed on the campaign trail and that has followed you into the White House. They were not killed by an undocumented immigrant or a "radical Islamic terrorist." They were killed in an act of civic love, facing down a man allegedly spewing hate speech directed at two teenage girls, one of whom was wearing a hijab. That man seems to have a public record of "extremist ideology" - a term issued by the Portland Police Bureau.

This "extremism" may be of a different type than gets most of your attention, or even the attention in the press. But that doesn't make it any less serious, or deadly. And this kind of "extremism" is on the rise, especially in the wake of your political ascendency. Most people who study these sorts of things do not think that is a coincidence. I do not blame you directly for this incident. Nor do I think other people should. But what a President says, who he has around him, and the tone he sets can set the tone for the nation at large.

Perhaps Portland, Oregon is off your radar. It is, after all, a rather liberal place. It's even a "sanctuary city." But it is still an American city. And you are its President. Two Americans have died leaving family and friends behind. They are mourned by millions more who are also deeply worried about what might come next.

I hope you can find it worthy of your time to take notice.

Donald Trump On "Credible Sources"

Donald Trump went on another of his Twitter rants yesterday railing about the use of unnamed "sources" in news reports about him.

As you can see above, he says "Whenever you see the words 'sources say' in the fake news media, and they don't mention names... it is very possible that those sources don't exist but are made up by fake news writers. #FakeNews is the enemy!"

Now, when he says sources don't exist, is it possible he speaks from first hand experience?

Take a trip with me on the way-back machine...

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Podcast: OutGames Cancel At Last Minute, Luxembourg's First Gentleman Represents, New Music From Eli Lieb

In this week’s podcast:

• Survivor’s of Chechnya’s "gay purge" describe the physical and mental torture they endured in their country's gay concentration camps

• Two gay men were whipped with canes in front of thousands in Indonesia for the crime of having consensual gay sex in private

• The Trump administration’s proposed cuts to global health funding could lead to the deaths of over one million people around the world fighting HIV/AIDS

• Luxembourg's First Gentleman represents at the NATO Summit, but the White House forgets

• The 2017 World OutGames cancelled only 24 hours before the opening ceremonies

• New music from acclaimed out singer/songwriter, Eli Lieb.

All that and more in this episode of The Randy Report.

Trump Will Announce Decision On Paris Climate Accord Next Week

President Donald Trump tweeted Saturday he will make a decision next week on whether the United States will withdraw from the landmark Paris climate accord.

At the G7 Summit in Sicily this week, several world leaders attempted to sway Trump into staying committed to the climate agreement.

An official dispatch from the G7 read, the U.S. "is in the process of reviewing its policies on climate change and on the Paris Agreement and thus is not in a position to join the consensus on these topics."

Speaking to reporters after the G7 meeting, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said, “The whole discussion about climate has been difficult, or rather very unsatisfactory. Here we have the situation that six members, or even seven if you want to add the EU, stand against one.”

Running for president in 2016, Trump often threatened to tear up the climate agreement that President Obama signed. But, aides to Trump say the president listened carefully to his counterparts, and is "evolving" on the issue.

News site Axios reports that Trump has already told several close advisers he plans to leave the accord.

U.S. Soccer Teams To Wear Rainbow-Themed Uniforms In Honor Of Pride Month


In recognition of LGBTQ Pride month in June, U.S. Soccer will activate a number initiatives in partnership with the You Can Play Project, along with the U.S. National Soccer Team Players Association and the Women's National Team Players Association.

The You Can Play Project is an organization dedicated to ensuring equality, respect and safety for all athletes, coaches, and fans without regard for sexual orientation and/or gender identity.

As the highlight, the U.S. Men’s and Women’s National Teams will wear pride-inspired rainbow numbers during the June friendlies.

The MNT will debut the look for the World Cup Qualifying tune-up against Venezuela on June 3 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah.

The WNT will wear the kits in away friendlies against Sweden on June 8, and Norway three days later.

After the games, the shirts will be auctioned off for charity. In addition, fans will be able to purchase the customized rainbow jerseys online at

Saturday, May 27, 2017

White House Omits Only Gay Spouse In Photo Caption

Click image to enlarge

The White House posted a photo taken during this week's NATO summit of the spouses of the attending world leaders.

The LGBT community was quick to hail the inclusion of the First Gentleman of Luxembourg, Gauthier Destenay, who married the Prime Minister of Luxembourg, Xavier Bettel, two years ago.

And yet, for some unknown reason, Mr. Destenay was the only spouse to be omitted in the caption by the White House.

There are ten people in the photo, only nine included in the caption.

Oh, but they did list Melania twice, so, yeah...

Now, can you think of a reason that could explain why he would the only one excluded?

Remember, Donald Trump told the LGBTQ community during the campaign that he would be "much better for the gays" than Hillary.


(h/t The Daily Beast)

President Trump Only World Leader At G7 Summit To NOT Give Press Conference

Remember when Donald Trump dogged Hillary Clinton over how much time had passed since she had done a press conference? He inferred over and over that avoiding the press was due to being crooked.

“She doesn’t do news conferences, because she can’t,” Trump said at an August rally in Ashburn, Virginia. “She’s so dishonest she doesn’t want people peppering her with questions.”

Guess who left the G7 summit today as the only world leader to not hold a press conference?

Via The Hill:

President Trump was the only world leader not to give a press conference following the G7 summit Saturday, adding to already existing tension between the president and the press.

The Trump administration did offer a press briefing after the summit by the president’s National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn. The briefing, which was given off-camera but on-the-record, took place around the same time other world leaders offered their post-summit press conferences.

According to a report by The Washington Post, journalists at the briefing by Cohn and McMaster were frustrated as the two officials refused to comment on reports that Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner discussed setting up a secret communications channel between the Trump transition team and Moscow.

Tweet Of The Day: Randy Rainbow

Hillary Clinton: "I Won't Lie. Chardonnay Helped A Little, Too"

Lord knows I don't need another reason to support Hillary Clinton. I've said for years "she's my girl."

But catch this very human laugh line she dropped yesterday speaking at her alma mater, Wellesley College.

Joking about walks in the woods and organizing her closet, Hillary included one more coping mechanism:

"I won't lie. Chardonnay helped a little, too."

More wine!

Watch the moment below.

The Simpsons: The Ghost Of Richard Nixon Visits Donald Trump

In this delicious new short from The Simpsons, President Trump makes one more desperate plea to patch things up with now-fired FBI Director James Comey.

I don't know what's more on the nose: Mike Pence erasing the "Vice" from his name plate or the ghost of Richard Nixon thanking Trump for helping him move up to being "the 44th best president."

Watch below.

Trump Campaign Cancels Rally Due To "Unforeseen Change" In Schedule

Just last week, the Trump campaign announced a rally to be held in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

But today, the campaign announced the rally would have to be "rescheduled" due to "an unforeseen change in President Trump's schedule."

"Due to an unforeseen change in President Trump's schedule, we will need to unfortunately postpone the previously scheduled rally in Cedar Rapids on June 1st.

"Stay tuned for information on a rescheduled date early next week. Our sincere apologies for any inconvenience this may have cause. President Trump will see you in Iowa very soon."

Gee, I wonder what came up...?

National Security Adviser "Not Concerned" About Kushner/Russia Communications

So happy together...

Responding to reports that President Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, had talks with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak about setting up "secret lines of communication," National Security Advisor Gen. H.R. McMaster said he’s “not concerned.”

From Politico:

McMaster told American reporters traveling with Trump at the G7 summit in Sicily that the U.S. frequently sets up backchannels to countries for discreet communications.

“We have backchannel communications with a number of countries,” McMaster said in response to questions.

“What that allows you to do is communicate in a discreet manner so I’m not concerned.”

Friday, May 26, 2017

"Red Nose Day Actually" - The Love Actually Reunion

Christmas in May?

Fans of the 2003 rom-com Love Actually got a special gift this year for Red Nose Day - a short film
reunion of the original cast members!

The short film was created for the Red Nose Day charity broadcast, which aired in the UK back in March, and finally aired for US audiences on Thursday.

The clip begins with Keira Knightley opening her front door to Andrew Lincoln and his cue cards (“How do you like the beard?”

Lots of familiar faces from the original film abound: Liam Neeson, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Rowan Atkinson, Bill Nighy, Colin Firth, Lucia Moniz, Laura Linney, and cameos by Patrick Dempsey and Kate Moss.

Hugh Grant, returning as the UK prime minister, wraps up the film speaking to reporters about the state of things in the world: “Usain Bolt has run his last Olympics, the Harry Potter films are finished, Piers Morgan is still alive.”

But he shifts the topic to more a more positive view bringing the story around to giving, “Metallica’s album is an absolute cracker. And on a deeper level, I’m optimistic. Wherever you see tragedy, you see bravery, too. Wherever you see ordinary people in need, you see extraordinary people come to their aid.”

The film’s original writer-director Richard Curtis made the reunion happen for Comic Relief, the charity that organized Red Nose Day, to raise money and awareness to help children living in poverty in America and around the world. The effort has brought in more than $1 billion in donations worldwide.

You can still donate to Red Nose Day by clicking here.

News Round-Up: May 26, 2017

(via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

• Memorial Day weekend means we head into the dog days of summer. I'm not complaining ;)

• During a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos told lawmakers she had no problem with private schools receiving publicly-funded vouchers denying admission to students from LGBTQ families.

• United Airlines wrongly accused a gay dad of having his hand "too close" to his son's genitals during a flight. United has since apologized but asked the man to "keep it low key" due to the airline's recent bad press.

• In high school, Wyatt Pertuset was homecoming king, prom king, student body president and an out football player. Check out his terrific coming out story over at OutSports.

• Speaking of out athletes, the former CEO of the Cleveland Browns thinks Michael Sam's short foray into the NFL could prevent other closeted football players from coming out.

• The White House may have a team of lawyers vet President Trump's tweets before the Donald sends them out into the interwebs.

• Check out hottie Rob Gronkowski get soaking wet washing his car, serve sushi from his bare bod and literally flip out in a pillow fight in the new “On My Mind” video from dance music DJ/producer 3LAU. I like the song, btw.

Jared Kushner Discussed Setting Up White House/Kremlin Secret Channel Of Communication With Russian Officials

The Washington Post is reporting Donald Trump's closest adviser, son-in-law Jared Kushner, spoke to high level Russian officials regarding setting up a secret line of communication with the Kremlin.

Jared Kushner and Russia’s ambassador to Washington discussed the possibility of setting up a secret and secure communications channel between Trump’s transition team and the Kremlin, using Russian diplomatic facilities in an apparent move to shield their pre-inauguration discussions from monitoring, according to U.S. officials briefed on intelligence reports.

Ambassador Sergei Kislyak reported to his superiors in Moscow that Kushner, son-in-law and confidant to then-President-elect Trump, made the proposal during a meeting on Dec. 1 or 2 at Trump Tower, according to intercepts of Russian communications that were reviewed by U.S. officials. Kislyak said Kushner suggested using Russian diplomatic facilities in the United States for the communications.

The meeting also was attended by Michael Flynn, Trump’s first national security adviser.

The White House disclosed the fact of the meeting only in March, playing down its significance. But people familiar with the matter say the FBI now considers the encounter, as well as another meeting Kushner had with a Russian banker, to be of investigative interest.

Now, why would you want to hide your communications with Russia unless you were doing something you shouldn't?

World OutGames Cancelled 24 Hours Before Opening Ceremony

Less than 24 hours before the opening ceremonies in Miami, the organizers of the 2017 OutGames cancelled most events including the opening and closing ceremonies.

From the Miami Herald:

The long-planned sporting and cultural event known as the World OutGames, a 10-day LGBT-themed event advertised as a spectacular gathering of athletes from around the world, unraveled Friday about 24 hours before the opening ceremonies.

Organizers announced that the opening and closing ceremonies, along with nearly all of its sports events, were canceled due to financial issues. The bombshell revelation came via a short Facebook post from the event’s board of directors Friday.

“It is with deep regret that due to financial burdens, World OutGames must cancel its sports programming and Opening and Closing Ceremony with the exception of soccer, aquatics and country western dance,” reads the text. “The Human Rights Conference and cultural programs will continue as planned. We thank everyone who has supported the effort and apologize to those who will be impacted by this difficult decision.”

And with that, the high hopes for the 10-day event were dashed as athletes from around the world streamed into Miami, ready to compete only to learn the games were canceled. Some arrived before the announcement, and others found out mid-air.

How very disappointing for the athletes. According to reports, many participants found out in mid-air on their way to Miami.

New Music: Sia "To Be Human" feat. Labrinth

In anticipation of the premiere of the upcoming Wonder Woman flick on June 2nd, check out "To Be Human" by Randy Report favorite, Sia, from the film's soundtrack.

And, in truth, who better to voice a track from Wonder Woman than Sia?

The film, starring Gal Gadot and Chris Pine, marks the first superhero film ever to be directed by a woman (Patty Jenkins) with a leading female protagonist in the storyline.

No stranger to film soundtracks, Queen Sia has contributed songs to 50 Shades Darker, The Hunger Games, Twilight, The Neon Demon, and San Andreas.

U.K. artist Labrinth guests on the sweeping, anthemic track.

Listen below.

Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" Turned Into Dark Movie Scene

Love this video from Corridor Digital that turns the iconic "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen into a dark movie scene.

Any way the wind blows...

First Gentleman Of Luxembourg Proudly Joins Spouses Of World Leaders At NATO Conference

People Magazine reports that Gauthier Destenay, the First Gentleman of Luxembourg, joined the female partners of world leaders for dinner at the current conference of NATO leaders in Belgium.

The gathering took place at the Royal Castle in Brussels.

Prime Minister Bettel, 44, and Belgian architect Destenay entered a civil partnership in 2010 and married in 2015 after Luxembourg’s legislators approved gay marriage. Bettel became the first openly gay Prime Minister of Luxembourg in December 2013, after an election campaign in which his sexuality was not a secret nor an issue.

Bettel is the world’s only gay head of government since Iceland’s former Prime Minister Johanna Sigurðardóttir, a lesbian, and Belgium’s Elio Di Rupo finished their mandates in 2013 and 2015 respectively.

#FBF - The Electric Company

A friend on Facebook just shared this and it took me back. Waaaay back.

Oh yes, I grew up on PBS shows like The Electric Company, Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood and Zoom :)

Good times.

And how about that cast for The Electric Company? Academy Award winners Rita Moreno and Morgan Freeman? Plus Irene Cara, Mel Brooks and Zero Mostel? Dang, we had it good.

The show ran for 780 episodes from 1971 - 1977.

Watch the zippy show intro below.

Out Music: Eli Lieb "Hollywood"

I was thinking earlier this week that we need more music from the uber-talented Eli Lieb.

And here it is.

Eli shares on his Facebook page,"I've made a lot of life changes - You can hear about them in my new single, 'Hollywood'. On to the next phase..."

The new song, "Hollywood," paints a plaintive portrait of "broken angels," "tired halos" and "the ghosts of Hollywood" in the City of Angels.

"So I'm leaving for a life that's good, and I'm so fucking sick of Hollywood"

Journey on, Eli.

I'm a big fan of the singer/songwriter - you can find more of his music on The Randy Report here.

The new song is available on iTunes here, and you can watch the video below.

Human Rights Watch Reports On Beatings & Electrocution Of Gay Men In Chechnya

President Ramzan Kadyrov of Chechen Republic

Human Rights Watch has published a report detailing the horrific treatment and torture of gay men in Chechnya.

According to the report, the speaker of Chechnya’s parliament, Magomed Daudov, was involved in authorizing the violence.

Radio Free Europe details the torture ranging from beatings to electrocution devices.

"All of the victims suffered repeated beatings," the report said. "Security officials kicked them with booted feet, beat them with polypropylene pipes and sticks, and made other inmates beat them" -- mostly on the men’s buttocks and legs.

"They put you face down on the floor and beat you with pipes," one victim told Human Rights Watch. "Then they force other prisoners [held for allegedly supporting insurgents or for alleged drug offenses] to carry on with the beating. Each man gets some 70 to 80 blows. And so it goes.... And you literally turn black and blue from waist to toes."

The rights group says local Chechen authorities also used electrocution devices to torture the victims.

Former detainees described those devices as machines with a knob on one side and wires sticking out of it with metal clips at the ends -- clips which were attached to the victims' fingers, toes, and earlobes.

"They turn the knob, electric current hits you, and you start shaking," a former detainee told Human Rights Watch. "And they keep turning the hellish machine, and the pain is just insane. You scream and scream and you no longer know who you are."

"Finally, you faint," the former detainee continued. "It all goes dark. But when you come to your senses, they start all over again. And once they’re done with you and you get your bearings, you hear other inmates screaming. The sounds of torture are just there all day, and at some point you start losing your mind."

Many of the victims were returned to their families where authorities suggested the relatives perform "honor killings"

Human Rights Watch urges the European Union and the United States to intervene and offer sanctuary to the victims.

Former Vice President Joe Biden has called on President Trump to address the human rights violations. Trump has not spoken publicly to date about the ongoing atrocities.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

The Trumps Cover MAD Magazine

It's kinda perfect, right? 

Washington Post: Jared Kushner Is Now A Focus In Russian Investigation

The Washington Post is reporting that President Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, has become a focus in the current investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Kushner, who held meetings in December with the Russian ambassador and a banker from Moscow, is being investigated because of the extent and nature of his interactions with the Russians, the people said.

The Washington Post reported last week that a senior White House official close to the president was a significant focus of the high-stakes investigation, though it did not name Kushner.

FBI agents also remain keenly interested in former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn and former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, but Kushner is the only current White House official known to be considered a key person in the probe.

The Post has not been told that Kushner is a target — or the central focus — of the investigation, and he has not been accused of any wrongdoing. Target is a word that generally refers to someone who is the main suspect of investigators’ attention, though prosecutors can and do bring charges against people who are not marked with that distinction.

According to reports, Kushner did not include December meetings with Russian officials on his security clearance forms.

Today Is #RedNoseDay

Instastud Alex Abramov
Hey, hey, hey - it's Red Nose Day!

Launched in 2015, this campaign is all about helping kids and working to end child poverty.

And from now until June 15, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will match every dollar raised through Facebook up to $1 million. That means your dollars will do double the good.

Here's some official info about the campaign.

Red Nose Day is a fundraising campaign run by the non-profit organization Comic Relief Inc., a registered U.S. 501(c)(3) public charity.

Red Nose Day brings people together to have fun, raise money and change the lives of kids who need our help the most.

Red Nose Day launched in the US in 2015, dedicated to ending child poverty, both in the US and in some of the poorest communities in the world. The money raised by Red Nose Day in the US has benefited programs for children and young people in all 50 states and in 25 countries internationally.

Globally, Red Nose Day has raised over $1 billion since its launch in the UK in 1988.

The money raised by Red Nose Day benefits children in some of the neediest communities in the US and some of the poorest communities in the world. Partner charities include Boys & Girls Clubs of America; charity: water; Children’s Health Fund; Covenant House; Feeding America; Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance; National Council of La Raza; Save the Children and The Global Fund.

All of Red Nose Day’s grant money supports projects to keep children and young people safe, healthy, educated and empowered.

Here's a link to the official Red Nose website for more info, and click here to donate on Alex Abramov's Facebook page (since I'm sharing his Red Nose Day pic) where your dollars get doubled.

Tyson Beckford Coaches ET's Cameron Mathison On "How To Be A Chippendale"

Super model Tyson Beckford, currently headlining as the Celebrity Guest Host at Chippendales in Las Vegas, issued a challenge to Entertainment Tonight host Cameron Mathison to come take “the Beckford boot camp” to see if the TV host could cut it as a Chippendale.

Aided by Chipps cast mates, Tyson taught Mathison through secrets of being a Chippendale.

Apparently, “the shirt rip" is not quite as easy as it looks. Fortunately, Mathison had expert backup with Beckford and the men of Chippendales.

Then there's the pre-show workout before Tyson brought Mathison onstage before a live audience to show-off a bit of what he'd learned.

And the crowd goes wild...

Tyson Beckford's run at Chippendales has been extended due to popular demand, so head out to Vegas and check him and the Chipps out at the Rio Hotel and Casino.

Donald Trump Attends NATO Summit

Speaking to fellow heads of state in front of NATO's new headquarters, President Trump called out those countries who he feels do not contribute their fair share.

From CNN:

“Twenty-three of the 28 member nations are still not paying what they should be paying and what they are supposed to be paying for their defense,” Trump said, delivering these remarks as heads of state of the other NATO countries looked on. “This is not fair to the people and taxpayers of the United States,” Trump said.

“2% is the bare minimum for confronting today’s very real and very vicious threats,” Trump said. “If NATO countries made their full and complete contributions, then NATO would be even stronger than it is today, especially from the threat of terrorism.”

You can see the reaction of some of those countries' leaders below. They look quite enchanted, no?

And then there was this winning moment when Trump pushed Montenegro Prime Minister Dusko Markovic aside so that he could stand in front of the group.

I guess this is what Trump means by "America first."

Watch below.

Federal Appeals Court Upholds Nationwide Ban On Trump's Travel Ban

Get ready for a new Twitter rant from Donald Trump.

The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, located in Virginia, has upheld an injunction against President Trump's travel ban from six Muslim-majority countries.

The executive order would have banned people from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen from entering the US for 90 days and all refugees for 120 days.

As I recall, the point of the "ban" was to give the Trump administration time to examine ways to improve national security. But, hasn't it been more than 90 days by now anyway? Haven't they figured out what it was they wanted to figure out?

The ruling notes that Trump’s executive order “speaks with vague words of national security, but in context drips with religious intolerance, animus and discrimination.”

See the text below.

Dr. Ben Carson: "Poverty Is A State Of Mind"

Dr. Ben Carson, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
The New York Times reports that the current Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Dr. Ben Carson who has no background in housing, told Armstrong Williams at SiriusXM Radio that poverty is "a state of mind."

“I think poverty to a large extent is also a state of mind,” he said, according to a transcript of the interview that was released on Wednesday. “You take somebody that has the right mind-set, you can take everything from them and put them on the street, and I guarantee in a little while they’ll be right back up there.” He added that helping people may not better their lives. “You take somebody with the wrong mind-set, you can give them everything in the world — they’ll work their way right back down to the bottom,” Mr. Carson said.

And Twitter had a field day:

News Round-Up: May 25, 2017

(photo: pascalpprl)
Some news stories you may have missed:

• Don't be sad. The weekend is almost here.

• Donald Trump's proposed budget cuts to AIDS treatment could cost a million lives.

• Judge to Indiana same-sex couples regarding the state law not allowing two mothers' names on a baby's birth certificate: "You can't overcome biology."

• The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office says that Trumpcare would leave 14 million without health insurance next year, and 23 million by 2026. The report also indicates that those with pre-existing conditions WILL be hurt by the pending legislation.

• The NBA awarded the 2019 All-Star Game to North Carolina thanks to state Republicans' fake repeal of anti-LGBT law, HB2.

• Donald Trump's base is shrinking - those who "strongly approved" of the job he is doing fell from 29% to 21%.

• Check out this sweet trailer for In a Heartbeat, an animated short that chronicles an insecure middle schooler's crush on the most popular boy in school.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Tony Award Nominee Ben Platt Performs "For Forever" From DEAR EVAN HANSEN

According to everyone I know, Ben Platt's devastating performance as the title character in the hit Broadway musical, Dear Evan Hansen, is about to be honored with a Tony Award for "Best Performance by an Actor in a Musical."

The musical is about an awkward teen who feels isolated in life. His therapist advises him to write himself a hopeful letter each day, which he does.

But one of those daily letters, wherein Evan appears to have given up on his senior year and wonders if anyone would notice if he were gone, accidentally falls into the hands of another student shortly before that student commits suicide.

The boy's family, and eventually everyone, assume the letter to have been addressed to Evan, now perceived as the boy's best friend. This event cracks open Evan's lonely life.

This week Platt performed the song "For Forever" on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert for the first time outside the context of the show, to devastating effect.

Here's how Platt introduced the performance.
"The song is called "For Forever. This is the first time I've ever sung the song outside the context of the show.

"Essentially, this lie that we talked about earlier that he fabricated is that he was friends with this kid in his class that committed suicide. And so Evan has been invited over to dinner by this kids grieving family. They've been led to believe that he was a friend of their son.

"Evan's plan when he goes into dinner he tried to either diffuse that or make sure the situation ends right there.

"However, the mother of this kid is so in desperate need of something good to hang on to, some sort of memory, that Evan starts to fabricate this story about a day that they had, a friendship that never existed.

"And in doing so, visibly helps this mother to heal. And also sort of finds he gets to heal a bit himself. A sort of answer to his loneliness he didn't expect to find."

Watch the performance below.

Montana: Republican Congressional Candidate Greg Gianforte "Body Slams" Reporter

Greg Gianforte

UPDATE - Fox News was present at the incident and have corroborated Jacobs story:

As the time for the interview neared, Gianforte came into the room. We exchanged pleasantries and made small talk about restaurants and Bozeman.

During that conversation, another man — who we now know is Ben Jacobs of The Guardian — walked into the room with a voice recorder, put it up to Gianforte's face and began asking if he had a response to the newly released Congressional Budget Office report on the American Health Care Act. Gianforte told him he would get to him later. Jacobs persisted with his question. Gianforte told him to talk to his press guy, Shane Scanlon.

At that point, Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck with both hands and slammed him into the ground behind him. Faith, Keith and I watched in disbelief as Gianforte then began punching the reporter. As Gianforte moved on top of Jacobs, he began yelling something to the effect of, "I'm sick and tired of this!"

Jacobs scrambled to his knees and said something about his glasses being broken. He asked Faith, Keith and myself for our names. In shock, we did not answer. Jacobs then said he wanted the police called and went to leave. Gianforte looked at the three of us and repeatedly apologized. At that point, I told him and Scanlon, who was now present, that we needed a moment. The men then left.


Montana's Republican candidate for Congress, millionaire Greg Gianforte, appears to have anger management issues as tonight's news cycle is roiled by the story that he allegedly body-slammed a reporter for The Guardian just one day before the special election.

From The Guardian:

Ben Jacobs, a Guardian political reporter, was asking Greg Gianforte, a tech millionaire running for the seat vacated by Ryan Zinke, about the Republican healthcare plan when the candidate allegedly “body-slammed” the reporter.

“He took me to the ground,” Jacobs said by phone from the back of an ambulance. “This is the strangest thing that has ever happened to me in reporting on politics.” Jacobs subsequently reported the incident to the police. Gianforte’s campaign did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Audio of the abortive interview recorded by Jacobs captures the altercation, and appears to reference previous questioning from another Guardian reporter. “I’m sick and tired of you guys,” Gianforte said. “The last guy who came here did the same thing. Get the hell out of here. Get the hell out of here. The last guy did the same thing. Are you with the Guardian?”
No one from the Gianforte campaign has responded to questions about the incident.

Jacob's recorder was on during the alleged assault. Listen to audio of the assault below.

Fox News Poll: Trump's Approval Rating Drops To 40%

Now, when you're a Republican president and your approval numbers drop like this in a Fox News poll, you're in some kind of trouble.

According to the latest Fox News poll:

• President Trump's approval numbers are down to 40% from 45% last month in the same poll.

• Disapproval rating rose 5 points to 53%.

• Trump shows erosion of support among whites without a college degree, falling 9 points from last month to 53% this month.

• Independent voters' approval fell 8 points from last month to 34% this month.

• Back in December only 32% of respondents believed Russia's influence aided Trump in the presidential election. Now, that number has grown to 44%.

Glenn Close Stops SUNSET BOULEVARD Over Audience Member Taking Photos

My good friend, T. Oliver Reid, currently in the Broadway revival of Sunset Boulevard, reports today that the divine Miss Glenn Close stopped the show when an audience member kept taking photos.

"And then Glenn...Miss Close if you're nasty, stops her show-stopping song and says to the person taking photos, "That is very invasive...we can either have a show or a photo shoot." #Scene


Missing You Madly, Dear Rona

Rona Newton-John

Four years ago, my dear, wonderful, "partner in crime" Rona Newton-John passed away on Memorial Day 2013 from a diagnosis of brain cancer.

The time between diagnosis to her passing was swift, only a matter of weeks. Fortunately, Rona did not suffer during that time.

I miss her laugh, her smile, and her wicked sense of humor.

I miss her.

In 2015, Olivia shared a painting of Rona (see above) by her longtime bff, Pat Farrar. It fills my heart to see Rona's spirit captured so beautifully.

My magical, marvelous Rona. You are never gone, you smile in my heart forever.

Lifting a vodka martini in your memory today.

"Goody, goody."

Rona Newton-John with hubby Michael and I backstage at a concert. I'm sure there were martinis somewhere cropped from this pic
Rona Newton-John, Michael and I backstage

Rona Newton-John
Rona being Rona :)

With Olivia Newton-John, Gregg Cave, Michael Caprio and Rona Newton-John
With Olivia, Michael, Gregg Cave and Rona after Olivia judged the
"You're The One That We Want" reality talent show

In the studio while Olivia and Rona recorded "Mickey" for the
"A Few Best Men" soundtrack

Olivia Newton-John, Michael Caprio and Rona Newton-John during TV special taping
Olivia, Michael and Rona taping a TV special

Rona, Michael, Olivia, Jon Secada and Amy Sky in Washington DC for
Christmas at Fords Theatre TV Special

Pat Farrar, Olivia, Michael, Rona and I backstage in Las Vegas

Rona, Michael and Olivia on set for the "Sordid Lives" TV series
With my dear Rona Newton-John at a 2011 Christmas party
Rona and I at Christmas party in 2011
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