Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Today's quote of the day is from former Guns N Roses and current Velvet Revolver guitarist Slash, who was one of the subject of photographer Timothy Greenfield-Saunders' photos in "The Black List" exhibit which ran at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC, until April 22nd.
Yes, we are perhaps the first blog to quote Dan Quayle and Slash within 15 minutes in the history of the blogosphere!
Slash, 46, is actually half-black and half-white. We knew that, but we were surprised to learn on Wikipedia that 'this All-American boy' was actually born and raised in England! Slash's mom Ola Hudson (1946-2009), an African-American, was a costume designer for the likes of David Bowie. Slash has both American and British citizenship. Perhaps, both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney will covet his endorsement (forgive the political humor; we sense Romney isn't laughing, but then again we've never met the man).
Hmmmm....it just dawned us that if he got knighted by Queen Elizabeth, he would be 'Sir Slash.'
"Rolling Stone" ranked Slash as the 65th greatest guitar player of all time on a "100 Greatest Guitar Players of All-Time List." We are 99.9-percent certain that Keith Richards made the list as well.
An alleged dispute with Axl Rose, the lead singer of "GNR" apparently lead to Slash's exit from the band and the subsequent formation of Velvet Revolver.
Interestingly enough, Slash has just released his second solo album "Apocalyptic Love" which is assuredly flying off the record shelves in Boise, Idaho; here is Slash's quote:
"I still party all the time and hang out with everyone who drinks, but I don't personally, and don't really have the desire to get blitzed any more."
But, since no quotes from Fairbanks were anywhere to be found we went with a more recent Republican vice president in Dan Quayle, 65, who was veep under George H.W. Bush.
In spite of his now dubious political reputation, Quayle actually served in both houses of Congress for many years prior to becoming vice president. In 1976, at the age of 29, Quayle was elected into the House of Representatives and from 1981-89, he was a U.S. Senator for Indiana.
His son Ben Quayle (R-Ariz.), 35, is following the family's political tradition as he was elected to represent his district in Arizona. Quayle is one of many freshman Congressional reps who were elected in November of 2010; a class which is now the subject of a book from seasoned reporters at "Politico" (we need to ask Javier the Intern* to bing the author's names when he gets back from the Salt Lake City Library**).
As for Vice President Charles Fairbanks (1852-1918), he had a similar background to Quayle as he once a U.S. Senator before becoming Theodore Roosevelt's veep, but he got stabbed in the back by his boss as Teddy decided to support William Howard Taft instead, and Taft did indeed become president back in....where's Javier? But, we do know that it was 66 degrees in Fairbanks, Alaska, today.
As for the photo, we are not sure what the context is. This salute in Turkey is for the far, far-right Grey Wolves political movement; and at North Carolina State University, nicknamed the Wolfpack, it is the school's partisan salute at athletic events.
Here is Quayle's quote, and we are NOT making this one up:
"A low voter turn-out is an indication of fewer people going to the polls."
Links: 1) Dan Quayle's official home page, 2) Politico, 3) NC State U, 4) SLC, Utah Public Library and 5) Turkishpoliticsinaction.com, a site which is not in any way linked to far-right political movements in Turkey or anywhere else.
*-Javier the Intern is a fictional person; one day we will have to post a Wikipedia entry about him
**- We are not in Salt Lake City, Utah, but we hear the city's public library is among the best in the country.
Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Cheryl Miller, 48, a graduate of the University of Southern California, was the star player on the gold medal-winning women's basketball team at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.
In 1995, Miller was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass. As a high school senior for Riverside Polytechnic High School in Riverside, Calif., she scored 105 points in one game.
Her younger brother Reggie Miller, who was a standout at UCLA and the Indiana Pacers, said he was flabbergasted when he found out that she had scored some 40 points more than him on a night when he assumed he would be the member of the family making headlines in the local paper the next day.
Here is Cheryl Miller's quote:
"Every plant has to look good for at least two seasons."
Our quote today comes from Whoopi Goldberg, 56, a comedian/actress/activist/talk show host who won major acclaim with her motion picture debut in "The Color Purple" (1985), which along with "Blue Velvet," has to be the most famous film shot in the Wilmington, NC-area.
Goldberg won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in the film "Ghost" (1990), which starred the late Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore. Goldberg has the distinction of winning an Oscar, a Grammy, an Emmy and a Tony.
Earlier this month, Goldberg shocked the blogosphere when she announced on "The View," a talk show she co-hosts that she was a member of the National Rifle Association. Since Goldberg is a progressive activist who vocally opposed the anti-gay Proposition 8 measure in California, this lead one conservative blogger to openly ask if he should leave the NRA.
Here is Goldberg's quote; it regards another Academy Award winner:
"I don't look like Halle Berry. But, chances are, she's going to end up looking like me." http://www.whoopigoldberg.com
Sunday, May 27, 2012
Johnson was re-elected president in 1964 when he walloped Barry Goldwater, winning all but six states, including Goldwater's native Arizona. Among the state that Johnson are several states which have entrenched in red today, including Kansas, Wyoming, Idaho, Utah, Oklahoma and North Dakota.
Johnson was also the last president who had previously been a U.S. Senator (though Gerald Ford was a member of the House of Representatives) before the election of President Barack Obama, though many past and present Senators, including Al Gore, John Kerry and John McCain have attempted to become president in the years in between. Former Sen. Chuck Robb (D-Va.) was Johnson's son-in-law. Johnson, also known as LBJ, was the Senate Majority Leader from 1955-61.
The 36th president/37th veep, died in Johnson City, Tex., outside of Austin, where his presidential library is today.
Here is his quote:
"Every man has a right to a Saturday night bath."http://www.lbjlibrary.org
Saturday, May 26, 2012
We are going with NBA Boston Celtics great Larry Bird, 55, of French Lick, Ind., because he won a team gold as a member of the Dream Team in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics; he is also one of the two subjects in a brand-new Broadway play called "Magic/Bird," which depicts the rivalry and friendship between Bird and Los Angeles Lakers great Magic Johnson.
In an excellent April 23rd article in "The Washington Post" by Preston Williams, Tug Coker, 34, who plays Bird on stage was profiled. The native of Stafford, Va., relatively close to Washington, DC, and even closer to the historic city of Fredericksburg, Va., actually briefly played college basketball at William and Mary. Coker also had aspirations of being a big-time basketball player as a youth, so in a fitting irony, he ended up on Broadway instead.
As for Bird, he won won three NBA titles with the Boston Celtics during his career (1979-1992), including championships in 1981, 1984 and 1986. Bird is now an executive with the Indiana Pacers, a team that lost to the Miami Heat recently in the NBA playoffs. But, his old team, the Boston Celtics fared better as they won in Game 7 over the Philadelphia '76ers by an 85-75, with Rajon Rondo of the Celtics scoring 18 points. They will now face the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference finals.
Here is Bird's quote:
"It doesn't matter who scores the points, it's who can get the ball to the scorer."
*-I am a Turkish-American, and there is a bit of a row between Turks and Armenians. I would go into more details, but I am not a history professor at Princeton University.
**-Yes, we seriously doubt that Boginskaya has time to read our blog; she is now reportedly a gymnastics coach in Houston, Texas.
***-We believe, however, that we did actually spell her name right!
Friday, May 25, 2012
Instead, we will quote basketball great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, 65, who was actually friends with another guy named Bruce (that being Bruce Lee) as we continue to quote African-Americans who were subjects for photographer Timothy Greenfield-Sanders' "The Black List," which was on display at the National Portraits Gallery until April 22nd (this shot was not taken by the photographer).
Abdul-Jabbar remains the NBA's leading scorer with 38,376 points; he played for the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers from 1969-89. Before becoming a pro basketball player, Abdul-Jabbar won three NCAA titles with the UCLA Bruins, a team that was coached by the recently-deceased John Wooden.
Here is his quote:
"One man can be a crucial ingredient on a team, but one man can not make a team."
SIDEBAR: We thought we'd promote two of our favorite cinemas today as Cine in Athens, Ga., will be screening the French film "The Kid with a Bike" and the Israeli film "Footnote" starting today. In the nation's capital, The West End Cinema is also showing five films, including "The Kid with a Bike" as well as the documentary "Jiro Dreams of Sushi" and the Canadian film "Monsieur Lazhar," which was nominated for Best Foreign-Language Oscar.
Thursday, May 24, 2012
Here is Mondale's quote:
"If you are sure you understand everything that is going on, you are hopelessly confused."
Another one of Minnesota's favorite sons Bob Dylan is celebrating his birthday today.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
According to the May 15th edition of "The Inqusitir," Nastia Liukin, a native of Texas, intends to compete at the Olympic women's gymnastics team trials in San Jose, Calif., on June 28th. Those trials will determine which gymnasts get to compete at the 2012 London Olympics.
Here is Nastia's quote; we presume it's in regards to the 2008 Beijing Olympics (Shawn Johnson was one of her Olympic teammates) where she won gold:
"I think it's going to be a little more exciting and a little more confusing."
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Name: Gary Tate
Hometown: Branson, Missouri
Occupation: Fiddle Player
Will Likely Vote For: Mitt Romney
Wow! We are having lots of tech glitches with this entry. At any rate, this is the start of our series on how one person can decide a state, which can in turn determine the winner of the presidential election. Places like Beckley, West Virginia (George W. Bush 2000), Elko, Nevada (Bush 2004) and Cary, NC (Barack Obama, 2008) have helped determine the last three winners of very close presidential elections.
Today, we focus on the tourist mecca of Branson, Missouri, located off Highway 76. Branson has a population of 10,520, but more importantly the town in southern Missouri near the Arkansas border has popular theatres with mostly country musicians and old-time crooners, such as Roy Clark, Andy Williams, and Lee Greenwood. Branson also has a theatre run by Russian emigre comic Yakov Smirnoff, who like Greenwood, is known for his conservative politics.
We expect that since Missouri will once again go Republican as John McCain narrowly won the Show Me state in 2008, but President Barack Obama should perform strongly in St.Louis and Kansas City.
DISCLAIMER: Though he shares his name with a pastor in England, Gary Tate is a ficticious person. The image is actually of North Carolina bluegrass legend Hubert W. Watts (1885-1976).
Monday, May 21, 2012
Athens, Greece, has hosted the modern summer Olympics twice, including the initial games in 1896 and in 2004.
American swimmer Ann Curtis who won gold in women's 400 meter free-style swimming back during the 1948 Olympics is still alive at age 86.
The American delegation sent 300 athletes to the 1948 Olympics.
In 2004, there were significantly more American athletes in the field as 536 athletes were sent to Greece. Among them were Misty May and Kerri Walsh who won gold in women's beach volleyball.
So, what is the distance between Athens, Greece, and London, England; is the answer:
A) 1,466 miles
B) 1,476 miles
C) 1,486 miles
D) 1,496 miles
Several airlines travel the Athens-London route; they include British Airways and Olympic Air (Greece).
SIDEBAR: The answer to our quiz question regarding "The Flintstones" is A) 1960.
Friday, May 18, 2012
While researching, this we realized there is actually an American community called Bedrock, Colo., the far-west Colorado. The community has a post office which opened in 1883, and we hope it survived the major post offices closing announced yesterday here in the United States. The zip code for Bedrock, Colo, is 81411. But, if you send a postcard to Fred Flintstone at 345 Cave Stone Road Bedrock, Co. 81411, you will probably not get a reply (the Cave Stone Road address was one of several used for the Flintstone family on the show).
The tv-Bedrock is actually larger than Bedrock, Colo., as it has a population of 2,500. Though everyone reading this blog probably knows this, Fred was married to Wilma and they had a daughter named Pebbles. Conversely, their neighbors Barney and Betty Rubble had an adopted son (according to Wiki, he was adopted?!) Bamm-Bamm.
And, of course, there was the family pet dinosaur modeled after the typical family dog, named Dino (pictured). We have to wonder if the Rev. Joseph Chambers of Charlotte, NC, who called Barney the Dinosaur a Marxist ploy to make children ardent left-wingers felt the same way about Dino.
But, today's question, and those of you in Dubai and Singapore can play as well, is:
What year did 'The Flintstones' originally air?
Is the answer:
And, if you get it right, we will send out a Yabbbbbaaaadaaabaaayooo for you!
Thursday, May 17, 2012
The station wagon, according to Wikipedia, is an automobile that has a sedan/saloon with its roof extended. The vehicle also consists of of a three-box design or 'an auto with one or more rows of folding or removable seats behind the driver.'
The car was first developed in 1922, and the full-size station wagon, including the Ford Country Squire, hit the highways in 1967. But, the decline of the station wagon started in the 1970s as its gas-guzzling reputation made motorists opt for more economical imports, such as cars from Toyota.
But, the Wagon Queen Family Truckster, made especially for the Chevy Chase 'vehicle' (pardon the pun) "National Lampoon's Vacation" (1983) helped keep some station wagons on the road until the end of the Reagan administration.
Station wagons were also quite popular at drive-ins, especially for features that were more family friendly such as "Old Heavenly Dog" (1979), which also starred Chase.
One drive-in theatre which has made a successful comeback is the Hull's Drive-In in Lexington, Va., the country's only non-profit drive-in. From Friday night until Sunday night, Hull's will screen a double-header consisting of "John Carter" and "Wrath of the Titans."
Other drive-ins which are active include the Highway 21 Drive-In in Beaufort, SC, one of the very last remaining drive-ins in South Carolina. It is screening "Battleship" and "Think Like a Man" on screen one; while "The Avengers" and "Dark Shadows" show on screen two.
Further down south, the Starlight Drive-In in Atlanta, one of the very few drive-ins with six screens, is showing several double-headers, including "Think Like a Man" and "21 Jump Street" on screen one.
While out west, 88 Drive-In in Commerce City, Colo., which is the Denver metro area's only drive-in venue will show "The Avengers" and "John Carter."
So, here are ten suggestions to get away from it all for at least four years should Armageddon strike as it did when George W. Bush was elected in 2000:
1) Slovenia (pictured above): Amazingly enough this former Yugoslav republic is flourishing and the country recently made headlines for actually naming a bridge after Chuck Norris!
2) Argentina: Like most of of Latin America, Argentina had a turbulent period in the 1970s, but happy days are apparently here again.
3) Costa Rica: This will give a chance to finally see a blue frog!
4) Iceland: 24 hours of daylight during the spring and summer months will allow one to play golf at 3:00 a.m. Iceland Air recently began flights to Denver!
5) Norway: Kayaking in the fjords should give a person the opportunity to forget about partisan gridlock on the Beltway.
6) South Africa: Could give you a chance to see lions and cheetahs.
7) Cyprus (pictured below): The Turks and Greeks will probably argue over this island nation for centuries to come, but there are lots of great beaches and if problems resurface there is always the American embassy in Nicosia (the castle pictured is actually in Kyrenia; to let you on the in-joke, Tilly Gokbudak, the 'executive editor of this blog' is a Turkish-American).
8) Chile: See Argentina
9) Estonia: Tajikistan, Belarus, Moldova, Georgia.....yes, most of the former Soviet Republics have not really benefited from the collapse of the USSR, but Estonia is managing quite well.
10) Canada: Winner of the coin flip over France.
Wednesday, May 16, 2012
But, many churches in North Carolina, except for progressive congregations such as the Unitarian Universalist Church, were highly in favor of Amendment One. Glen Hope Baptist Church in Burlington,NC, openly endorsed the measure on its web site and cited Corinthians, Verse 7, in the process.
Lots of money was also spent on the ballot initiative with the pro-amendment group Vote for Marriage North Carolina raising $1.2 million and the opposition group Protect All North Carolina Families raising $2.2 million, according to "The Charlotte Observer."
The issue put African-Americans Christians in a bind. While most supported Amendment One, the Rev. T. Anthony Sparman, pastor of the African Methodist Episcopalian Zion Church in Hickory, NC, told NPR that he changed his mind about gay rights when working with gay and lesbian college students.
But, more African-Americans voted for the measure. In a separate NPR segment produced after President Barack Obama said his views on gay marriage had evolved to supporting the cause on Wednesday, the day after the North Carolina vote, the Rev. Patrick Wooden Sr. of the predominantly black Upper Room Church of God in Raleigh said he supported Amendment One and that he was disappointed by Obama's endorsement.
Wooden added that in his view African-Americans should vote according to Christian teachings as opposed to the race of a candidate. The support among African-Americans helped Obama beat Hillary Clinton in the 2008 state primary and later John McCain in the general election.
But, there is also the valid question regarding gay marriage as a human rights issue. Though many might be inclined to think that the notion that "Sesame Street" characters Bert and Ernie were secretly gay started from militant gay activists, it actually is reported to have originated with the Rev. Joseph Chambers of Charlotte, NC. In more recent years, Chambers has even taken on the arguably more radical notion that another PBS children's show figure Barney the Dinosaur was a socialist figure trying to indoctrinate children with extreme left-wing views.
One thing remains certain though: This issue regarding gay marriage will be an issue for quite some time to come irregardless of how it does or does not play out in the 2012 general election.
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
And, before we get to that, I forgot to thank blog readers from Belgium, Portugal and Australia on our sister blog "The Daily Vampire,' in addition to them, I want to thank those of you from Bulgaria and Indonesia who have stopped by here in the last 24 hours.
The University of Alabama did indeed win its seventh NCAA championship in women's gymnastics on April 21, and this was the first time that the Crimson Tide had successfully defended its title.
For Tide senior Geralen Stack-Eaton, it must have been a particularly rewarding weekend for she also won an individual title on the balance beam.
Meanwhile, Ding defender her national title on bars with a 9.875 and she had a 9.995 on floor, which gave her a title on that apparatus as well; Ding edged out Stack-Eaton, the defending floor champ, and Ellyse Hopfner-Hobbs of UCLA, who is perhaps the top Canadian gymnast in the world at the moment.
Kyra Hunter of Florida won both the coveted all-around title as well as an apparatus title on vault. The Gators finished a very close second to the Tide in the team competition with the Bruins of UCLA coming in a close third.
Next year, UCLA hosts the NCAA championships in the sport.
Monday, May 14, 2012
Among the things to do in Denver when you're NOT dead (that's a reference to an independent American film for those of you in rural Uzbekistan), we highly suggest a visit to the Clyfford Still Museum, even though many of the great expressionist American painter's works are untitled (which drives us crazy).
But, speaking of people who have literally gone insane, earlier this year, Carmen Tisch, a Denver resident, punched one of Still's famous paintings, done in 1957 and worth $30 million, at the museum.
The dubious incident reminds one of an attack on Paul Gauguin's "Two Tahitian Women" painting at the National Gallery in Washington, DC, in April of last year. According to various media reports, Susan Burns of Alexandria, Va., the culprit in question in the Washington, DC-incident, said Gauguin's work was evil since it featured nudity and that it was 'bad for children.'
Burns later came back to the National Gallery and tried to assault Henri Matisse's painting "The Plumed Hat" in August of last year.
Lastly, we send out a special thanks to blog visitors from Armenia?!*, Belgium, Hungary and Jamaica** for visiting our blog today.
*-Hmmmm......I am a Turkish-American, how is it possible to be more popular in Yerevan than Ankara?!
**-It must have been a rainy day in Montego Bay!
Sunday, May 13, 2012
In January, the Criterion Collection released a duel disc with both the original Ishiro Honda Japanese version of "Godzilla" (1954) and its American alteration, which most of us saw on tv as kids.
There is also the satirical short cartoon "Bambi Meets Godzilla" (1969) and a Godzilla cartoon series which ran from 1978-81 on NBC in the United States.
Lastly, there is the retro web site Barry's Temple of Godzilla, which first 'came out of the water' in 1996. Though Barry ceased adding new entries in 2005, the web site is still up for those who are Godzilla fans:
Saturday, May 12, 2012
Here is a list of ten films I recommend at the moment. We are including the spaghetti western "Bullet for the General" (1969) since J.Hoberman wrote a great piece about the subgenre in the same current issue of "Film Comment."
Here is the list:
1. Morgan: A Suitable Case for Treatment (1966. Dir-David Mercer)
2. A Bullet for the General (Italy. 1969. Dir-David Damiani. w/Klaus Kinski)
3. Blow Out (1981. Dir-Brian DePalma)
4. Contagion (2011. Dir- Steven Soderbergh)
5. Bal (Turkey. 2010. Dir- Semih Kaplanoglu)
6. Trollhunter (Norway. 2010. Dir.-Andre Ovredal)
7. Being There (1979. Dir-Hal Ashby)
8. Senna (doc. 2011. Dir-Asi Kapadia)
9. A Dangerous Method (2011. Dir-David Cronenberg)
10. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011. Dir-Tomas Alfredson)http://www.filmlinc.com
Friday, May 11, 2012
We read this interesting tweet from "The Baltimore Sun" earlier in the week: "Who's better on gay rights, Mitt Romney or Barry Goldwater?"
Davis was one of many African-Americans photographed by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders as part of his The Black List series which was shown at the Smithsonian National Portraits Gallery in Washington, DC.
Here is the quote from Davis:
"First of all, I didn't suggest that we simply get rid of all prisons."
Saturday, May 5, 2012
Ironically, given that we are of the center-left ideology, we are quoting Dick Cheney today as part of our new series of quotes from American vice presidents. Last week, we quoted Richard Nixon, who was also once a veep himself.
Here is Cheney's quote:
"Except for the occasional heart attack, I never felt better."
Tuesday, May 1, 2012
Today, we are starting a month-long series of quotes from American athletes who won gold or silver at the Olympics. And, even though Barkley's Phoenix Suns lost to his friend Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls in the 1993 NBA Finals, the Auburn alum did win two gold medals in basketball at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics and at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics as part of the "Dream Team."
Barkley lead the Dream Team in scoring during the 1992 games when he scored 30 points in a 127-83 win over Brazil. Barkley was also involved in an ugly incident when he elbowed Herlander Coimbra from Angola, in a game that the Dream Team won by an overwhelming 116-48 margin. Some players from the other teams were reportedly so delighted to be on the same court with the likes of Barkley, Jordan and Magic Johnson, that that some of them actually, allegedly sought autographs from the Dream Team members after the game!
Barkley also played for the Philadelphia 76ers and the Houston Rockets during his NBA career; he is now a commentator for TNT.
Here is his quote:
"I don't think of myself as giving interviews. I just have conversations. That gets me in trouble."http://www.charlesbarkley.com