It’s Friday and this is my first blog of the fall season. Happy Autumn!
Miss Betty was here last weekend and this weekend, it’s just me and Ray. I really wanted to go to Chicago to see the Pet Shop Boys in concert, but that didn’t work out. So, we’re planning on going to a few yard sales before the rain Saturday and then do a double feature at the movies!
I hope you have a great weekend and I appreciate you checking out my random thoughts.
SUMMER’S LAST HURRAH –SORTA!
Last Friday, the second to last full day of summer, I was shocked to see this weather observation from Monticello, Iowa, which is about 80 miles northwest of the Quad Cities.
While that 129° reading would have beat the old Iowa state record of 118°, what is even more incredible is the dew point of 127°, which is not even achievable on Earth. The combination of the temperature and the dew point produced a heat index of 459°!!!!!
The weather sensor at the airport there is now corrected!
THIS MAKES ME SMILE
Former First Lady Laura Bush and her daughter, Barbara, are supporters of marriage equality. However, that support ends with her husband, George W. Bush, the 43rd U.S. President. At least that was his opinion in 2004 since he won’t comment on the subject today.
However, this past weekend, his father, George H.W. Bush, the 41st U.S. President, was an official witness at the same-sex wedding of two longtime friends, Bonnie Clement and Helen Thorgalsen in Kennebunk, Maine.
I love how he rocks the one red and one blue sock! And, Barbara looks very happy at the ceremony.
This gives me hope!
Sadly, the next two thoughts are more about despair!
NOT EVERYONE THINKS RUSSIA IS WRONG
Six American organizations have joined a worldwide coalition of more than 100 conservative groups that are behind Russia’s anti-gay legislation. One of those groups, World Congress of Families, is located right here in northern Illinois, in Rockford.
Larry Jacobs, the managing editor of the organization, says, “Even the U.S. Centers for Disease Control has shown that sexually transmitted diseases, drug use and suicide rates are significantly higher among what it discreetly calls a ‘sexual minority.’ CDC data also demonstrates that there is much greater health risks among teenagers who practice homosexuality than those who do not engage in homosexual behavior.”
Jacobs adds, “All the law does is to prohibit advocacy aimed at involving minors in a lifestyle that would imperil their physical and moral health.”
Sadly, I’m more concerned with the lies, the close-minded attitudes, and the “family values” he’s teaching his own children!
WHO OWNS THE RAINBOW?
Scott Lively, who runs Abiding Truth Ministries, a church dedicated to combating “the homosexual agenda” in Springfield, Massachusetts, is a staunch supporter of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s calling him “the defender of Christian civilization”. (Maybe Lively should move to Russia to show his love!)
Recently, Lively made a recommendation to Russian Olympic officials to fly a rainbow banner over the games to steal the thunder of gay activists that plan on rainbow-bombing the games. His reasoning? To show “the global homosexual movement” that “the rainbow belongs to God”!
Really? What is he going to tell me next? That God doesn’t want to share unicorns with the LGBT community either?
ROSIE HAS A VALID POINT
And, I have one more thought in this arena before I move on to happier topics.
Over the years, I’ve been indifferent about out lesbian actress and former talk show host, Rosie O’Donnell. While I loved her on “Nip/Tuck” as Dawn Budge, she definitely could get under my skin with some of her comments.
I’ve never thought of her as a spokesperson for the entire gay community, just as my comments are likely not supported by all in the LGBT community,. However, I admire the fact that she speaks out.
O’Donnell recently said this about the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics and it got me to rethinking my thoughts about supporting a boycott.
She says, “I have really mixed feelings about it. Part of me feels yes, we should boycott it. And part of me feels trepidation about all those athletes, some of whom are gay, who have spent their entire lives waiting for this moment that only comes once every four years. Would it be better if America went there and everyone wore a rainbow flag on their arms? I don’t know. It’s a very tough decision. You know, when I hear those stories about what’s going on in Russia, you know, we have to remind ourselves of the amount of gay bashing that happens in our country. Although ours is not sanctioned by the president — you know, Putin seems to be very pro-gay-bashing — it still occurs in our country at a rate that is shameful.”
Great point about the gay bashing that takes place here at home!
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
CHER FINALLY MAKES BIG ANNOUNCEMENT
This has been a very big week for Cher. Yes, that Cher!
The 67-year-old entertainment icon released “Closer To The Truth”, her first new studio album in almost twelve years (“Living Proof” came out in late 2001) and she announced the dates of her “Dressed To Kill” tour that kicks off in the spring.
Her last road trip, the “Farewell Tour” ended in 2005 after playing 325 dates in twenty countries over three years.
The “Dressed To Kill” tour kicks off in March 2014 in Phoenix, Arizona, and will hit 49 cities wrapping up about four months later in San Diego, California.
Earlier in the week, she performed on the “Today” show and said, “The road is horrible, but the concerts are great. I understand why guys in bands tear up hotel rooms and throw TVs out the windows, because it’s a very lonely place. The only time you have fun is at the concerts.”
If you live in the Midwest, she’ll be playing in St. Louis, MO (June 4), Milwaukee, WI (June 6), Chicago, IL (June 7), Des Moines, IA (June 9), and Minneapolis, MN (June 11).
The first single from the new album, “Woman’s World” didn’t get mainstream radio airplay, but it became her latest #1 hit on the Billboard Dance chart.
Des Moines, here we come!
“BEHIND THE CANDELABRA”
This past Sunday night, “Behind The Candelabra”, Stephen Soderbergh’s HBO movie based on the life of flamboyant pianist Liberace won an incredible, record-tying eleven awards for Outstanding Miniseries or Movie at the Primetime Emmys. “Eleanor and Franklin”, in 1976, also won eleven Emmys.
Oscar winner Michael Douglas also picked up the award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie playing Liberace beating out his co-star, Matt Damon, who played Liberace’s much younger lover, Scott Thorson.
The movie covers the last ten years of Liberace’s life and the ups-and-downs of the couple’s relationship. The movie is based on Thorson’s book, “Behind The Candelabra: My Life With Liberace”, which was published after the entertainer’s death in 1987 of AIDS-related complications.
With that being said, it does paint Liberace in more of a negative light and Thorson as an innocent teenager that was taken in and controlled by the entertainer, who was in his 50s when their relationship started.
I mentioned “innocent”, when talking about Thorson, because he’s had many run-ins with the law including an arrest earlier this year in Reno, Nevada, for burglary and using a credit card without consent.
As I watched the movie, I kept that in mind and told myself that Liberace (“Lee”) probably wasn’t as mean as he was portrayed in the movie. Instead, I marveled at how Douglas disappeared in the role as the over-the-top piano man.
“Behind The Candelabra” also picked up Emmys for Outstanding Costumes, Hairstyling, Makeup (Non-Prosthetic), and Prosthetic Makeup.
It was incredible how the makeup artists made Damon, who’s in his early-40s, look like a teenager when he met Liberace. Also, sexy Rob Lowe was almost unrecognizable as Liberace and Scott’s plastic surgeon.
Everything was lavish and over-the-top. The $23 million movie that was finally picked up by HBO Films because Hollywood movie companies said it was “too gay” to gamble on was a fabulous two hours of entertainment.
It just saddens me that Liberace lived in an era (not so much different from today for some lead actors) where he had to pretend to be straight and that he just hadn’t found the right woman for him to settle down and marry.
Gay? No way! Who would have even imagined such a thought? But, seriously, showmanship and acting can only get you so far. 🙂
When I was in Las Vegas in 1993, the Liberace Museum was still opened. I wanted to visit it, but my friend that I was traveling with, Dennis, did not want to see it. Now, I regret not venturing out on my own to check it out. The museum, which opened in 1979, closed in the fall of 2010.
I’m hoping with the success of the HBO movie that someone will re-open it in 2014 when we’re there to see Britney “It’s Britney, bitch” Spears!
WHERE DOES THE TIME GO?
We’re just days away from our two-year wedding anniversary.
While Ray and I have been together going on five years, we made it official on September 30, 2011, in Davenport, Iowa, in a small ceremony attended by Gretel, our now 12-year-old daughter, my sister, Tammy, Ray’s sister, Cindy, and Betty, the woman I call “Mom”.
Here is the video I put together of our first three years together. I posted this the day we made the announcement that we had gotten married.
The song is “So Good Together” by Reba.
The following day, October 1, 2011, we created the most beautiful majestic, magical reception in our backyard.
The song in this reception video is “In This Life” by Bette Midler. The photographer was Jenny Butler Hipskind.
Happy Anniversary Ray! Here’s to many more years together!
PICK HIT OF THE WEEK
While the duo, Quadron, has only charted in their native country of Denmark, I love their recent song, “Hey Love”.
Singer Coco O (Coco Maja Hastrup Karshøj) and musician/producer Robin Hannibal released their self-titled debut album in 2009 and it made “New York” magazine’s top ten album list that year.
They’ve had a big summer. Coco O recorded “Where The Wind Blows” for “The Great Gatsby” soundtrack and the duo’s second album, “Avalanche”, reached #3 after its May release in Denmark. The album also peaked at #16 on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop album chart in the U.S.
The first single, “Hey Love”, peaked at #8 on the Danish Charts.
MOVIE DOUBLE FEATURE THIS WEEKEND
This weekend, we plan on seeing “Prisoners” and “Don Jon”.
You gotta love Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhall, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt!
PEEPS’ ’80s FRIDAY FLASHBACK
Daryl Hall and John Oates met in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania back in 1967 and released their first album in 1972, but it didn’t make the Billboard charts.
Their first single, “She’s Gone” peaked at #60 in 1974. However, from their first Top 40 hit, “Sara Smile” (#4, 1976) to their last, “So Close (#11, 1990), they scored 29 Top 40 hits on the Billboard Hot 100.
Of those, 16 reached the Top Ten, 11 made the Top Five, and 6 topped the chart: “Rich Girl” (1977), “Kiss On My List” (1981), “Private Eyes” (1981), “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do)” (1982), “Maneater” (1982), and “Out Of Touch” (1984).
I love Hall & Oates and one of my favorite songs from the duo is from the “Voices” album. “You Make My Dreams” reached #5 in 1981.
That’s enough random thoughts, insanity, and fun for one week. I should stop before my head starts hurting. Here’s to the weekend!