Monday, May 17, 2010

Quick Hits For 5/17/10 (Rare Pop Culture Edition!)

I'm still catching up on gardening and household projects, and really hadn't much time to take a breath since I'm just going to make some comments on old news, new news, and stuff that's news to me. Time for some QUICK HITS! (With a heavier than normal emphasis on pop culture).

(1). Unless you've been living in a cave or shipwrecked you all probably know that the very beautiful young woman pictured above is Rima Fakih, who was crowned Miss USA last night. Rima is an Arab-American and a Muslim; that is a first for Miss USA. And this year it appeared that a controversy like that which erupted last year with with former Miss California Carrie Prejean, a Christian fundamentalist who opposed gay marriage and made those views known during the nationally televised pageant, had (mercifully) been avoided.

So far so good.

But wait! Now pictures of Ms Fakih pole dancing in a contest called "Stripper 101", sponsored by the Detroit based Mojo In The Morning radio show. Ms. Fakih and all other contestants were fully clothed in the competition, and there were only women in attendance of the event. Contestants were instructed by professional strippers on how to present their "best moves" on the pole.

Personally, I think the whole controversy is contrived.

Its all a part of ongoing international plot to dehumanize Rima and all other residents of the state of Michigan.

The whistle blower must have been an Ohio State grad.

(2) Oh, what the's the video from the OfficialMissUSAChannel on YouTube.

(3).And speaking of YouTube, Happy Fifth Birthday to the people who changed it all. And it would be nearly impossible for me to run this blog without delving into their little treasures on a regular basis.

(4). And STILL speaking of YouTube, my mind just did a cross reference to one of my new favorite shows, HBO's Treme.The show takes place in New Orleans in the months after Hurricane Katrina, and centers on the lives of a disparate group of citizens; musicians, a restaurant owner, her ne'er do well neo-hippie boyfriend, friends, lovers, ex-friends, ex-lovers, and all in between. One of the more entertaining characters is Creighton Bernette, played by John Goodman (left). Creighton is an author and college professor who discovers the wonders of YouTube in late 2005, and posts a profane tirade on YouTube blasting government on all levels, and to those he deems responsible for the tragedy of Katrina and its aftermath in the city he loves. Creighton soon finds out that his YouTube video is among the first to go viral...he becomes an overnight sensation, and the demand by his publishers for the novel he has been writing for five years reaches a new peak. And you have to love a 300 plus pound guy who dresses his daughter, his attorney- wife Toni (played by Melissa Leo) and himself as sperms (complete with tails) for the Mardi Gras parade. Its a great show, and addicting, but it takes some work for the audience to get to know the characters. Its as if the viewer has parachuted into New Orleans in late 2005, and you have to figure out who these characters are, and what is their relationship to each other. The writers don't spell it out for you, and it becomes the viewers job to sort it out. Also, the music is great, including longtime standard bearers of the New Orleans scene, plus gust stars like Dr. John and Elvis Costello making cameos. If you haven't checked out Treme, do'll enjoy the trip.

(5). Somewhat opposite of  Treme is SHOWTIME'S The Tudors in its presentation of characters and giving information about those characters to the viewer. Last night we met Catherine Parr (played by Joely Richardson, right), twice married, with no children, and soon to become the sixth and final bride of the charming despot Henry VIII.

The episode was a break from last week's marathon of torture, blood,  hanging, drawing,  quartering (Dereham), and multiple beheadings (Lady Rochford, Culpepper, and the unfortunate and immature former Queen Catherine Howard).

And watching Ms. Richardson in the episode I was quite taken by her resemblance to her mother, screen legend Vanessa Redgrave (right with Robert Shaw), and that Mom once played a wife of Henry as well; Vanessa was Anne Boleyn in the Academy Award winning film A Man For All Seasons in 1966. Its been a tough year or so for both Richardson and Redgrave. Last winter Joely's sister Natasha (wife of Liam Neeson) died in a tragic skiing accident, and recently Vanessa's sister, actress Lynn Redgrave, lost her battle to cancer.

(5). I didn't know of this last bit of news until I was reading my morning paper (the old fashioned way) on Monday, and I saw the following, taken from Ronnie James

"Message from Wendy Dio

Today my heart is broken, Ronnie passed away at 7:45am 16th May. Many, many friends and family were able to say their private good-byes before he peacefully passed away. Ronnie knew how much he was loved by all. We so appreciate the love and support that you have all given us. Please give us a few days of privacy to deal with this terrible loss. Please know he loved you all and his music will live on forever.

- Wendy Dio "

He began his musical career in a band called The Vegas Kings in 1957, and fronted Ronnie Dio and the Prophets from 1961-67. Then he formed The Electric Elves in 1967; by 1970 they morphed into Elf. The group had some limited success, but Ronnie James Dio really burst onto the scene when Ritchie Blackmore, late of DEEP PURPLE, co-opted ELF as his backup band, changed their name to Rainbow, and immediately started to dispense of musicians, except for Dio. Later he went on to replace Ozzie Osbourne in Black Sabbath, and served three tours of duty with Sabbath, as well as its offshoot Heaven and Hell. And of course, he fronted his own group, Dio, in all its incarnations for nearly 30 years.

Ronnie James Dio was 67 years old when he succumbed to stomach cancer yesterday. He was one of the Godfathers of Metal. His music will go on, and in that sense he will never truly leave us.

Legends are legends because they are timeless.



TomCat said...

Grest minds, Hugh. :-)

Rima is a fine American!

Herry Johnson said...

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