Monday, February 27, 2012

Celebrity Apprentice Hair Recap - Ep 2 Getting Medieval

It's time already for another Celebrity Apprentice hair recap: episode two: Getting Medieval (or Mid-Evil, as Victoria Gotti might say). This season of Celebrity Apprentice has ultra-fabulous hair, so I'm just recapping that. If I had to recap the whole show, no telling what my mental state would be in a month or two.

This episode was full of action and adventure. The two gender-based teams had to come up with a costumed, entertaining, fight-based skit for the New Jersey mead-serving dinner theater, Medieval Times. I've never been to Medieval Times, but it looks like you sit in a galley and get to wave a little flag while you chew on mutton. I'm assuming serving wenches are on hand to fulfill any of your medieval dietary needs.

The men, led by Penn Jillette, put on a variety-type show with fire-eating and juggling (Penn, in full carnival-barker mode), singing (Clay Aiken, reaching for the vocal stars), enunciating (George Takei, expert in perfect diction), and cross-dressing (Dee Snider bedecked as "Lady Dee Dee," and just hearing Takei say "Lady Dee Deeee" in his mellifluous tones was worth watching the entire show). Lady Dee Dee's hair, by the way, was lovely. Lou Ferrigno got to fight lustily with swords and Paul Teutul, Sr. rode into the ring on a dragon chopper. That guy is all about choppers.

It looked like a good time until Dee fractured his finger when his horse was spooked by Clay's tambourine playing. Therein Donald Trump at the board meeting kept joking that he should fire the injured Twisted Sister frontman just so he'd have a really bad day. Ever see a photo of a star-nosed mole? I think of that creature every time Trump tries to be funny.

Meanwhile, the women-folk, led by dirty comic, Lisa Lampanelli, put on a more nuanced skit featuring the "Unreal Housewives of Camelot," complete with New Jersey-based, table-tossing, Real Housewife, Teresa Giudice. Miss Universe, Dayana Mendoza, rode on a horse in a flesh-toned body-suit, and there was a Debbie Gibson sword-fighting crotch-shot, plus a Tia Carrere accidental boob reveal--something for everyone. Except for the moms and children in the galley, apparently, because the men's team won by over a hundred votes. Jillette's charity, Opportunity Village, will get the $20,000 win, matched by Medieval Times. Good deal!

Much cat-fighting ensued in the board room and in the end Victoria Gotti was fired for almost quitting when she didn't get an acting role, for misspelling "medieval" as "mid-evil" even though she was surrounded by items that had the name "Medieval Times" printed on them, and for missing some sound cues. I will miss her freaky Totally Hair Barbie look.

Celebrity hair time!

Trump hates firing Victoria Gotti because they are both snake-like.
Arsenio Hall's hair days are long gone but he wears a cool helmet.

The brave Lady Dee Dee has gravely injured her finger.

Aubrey O'Day reacting in the board room--I could draw her hair FOREVER. Paul Teutul, Sr.'s mutton chops will not be denied.
Victoria Gotti enters the elevator of shame. Farewell to her incredible hair!

And yet--controversy! When Gotti exits the building to the sound of doomed orchestration, she suddenly sports ringlets. But, seconds later, she's driving away in the limo of purgatory, and her hair is straightened again. Is she channeling Quick Curl Barbie? Are the editors trying to pull a fast one on us? Thank GOD I'm here to recap the hair of Celebrity Apprentice--otherwise we'd never know. We may still never know...

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Art documentaries for creative obsessives

Here are four art documentaries you may have missed about creative obsessions and their cathartic outcomes: Bill Cunningham New York, Exit Through the Gift Shop, Marwencol, and Herb & Dorothy. Even if you're not an artistic type, I'm sure you've run across someone in your life with unfathomable drive to create something out of nothing. You and that person will probably find some inspiration here. Let's explore the wonders of the obsessive task-driven mind and what happens when that obsession is carried out to the fullest.

Bill Cunningham New York (2010) - Bill Cunningham is a blue-jacketed, bike-riding New York fashion photographer who glides through the streets of the city, snapping anyone who dresses in an interesting, thoughtful way. He still uses 35mm film, which is odd, but he also lives in a tiny kitchen-less studio apartment where he sleeps on a narrow palette among dozens of file cabinets full of negatives (the bathroom is down the hall); so he is odd. He is odd in the best possible way.

A workaholic of good heart who lives to document street fashion. His weekly collages appear in the New York Sunday Times where you can see people sporting an abundance of anything that has caught his eye--be it tartan, trench coats, capes, black tights, whatever's happening in the moment. He also photographs high society and attends fashion week in Paris every year to educate his eye and stay fresh. He's up, he's down, he's an all-around octogenarian.

Director and cinematographer Richard Press takes a mostly fly-on-the-wall approach to explore Cunningham's quest to document every trend in the "armor [we wear] to survive the reality of everyday life." Formerly a successful milliner, there's much archival footage of Cunningham's work, his interviews, and his interactions with eccentric, artistic friends. One sequence of his 90+ photographer friend, Editta Sherman, dancing ballet in her youth, was shot by Andy Warhol.

Cunningham doesn't care about money, prestige, buyouts or fame--he's driven by his pure artist's eye. This is a thorough and far-reaching documentary about one man's obsession with clothing and how that touches and enriches so many people. Bill's drive and commitment might come off as a lonely, possibly stifling life, given that none of his long-time friends seem to know anything personal about him. But for him, the work is everything and the almost sacred joy he derives from documenting his fellow citizens is life-affirming.

Exit Through The Gift Shop (2010) - This is a prank pulled by British street artist, Bansky. Or is it? I'm not sure you could make this story up, no matter how creative you are. It starts off as a documentary about Thierry Guetta, a French immigrant who runs a used-clothing store in Los Angeles where he sells hipster-wear at huge markup. His obsession is to videotape every waking moment of his family and work life, which eventually and accidentally lands him in the European street-art movement by way of his cousin, Space Invader. Finding focus as a "documentary maker" of the growing but clandestine scene, Guetta proceeds to tail every major artist in the field, who agree to let him archive their subversive nighttime hit-and-runs. He then manages to meet up with the ultimate anonymous artist, Bansky, and their big adventure begins.

After thousands of hours of footage, the artists demand that he make the film about them, as artists will do, but Guetta's resulting masterpiece is decreed by Bansky to be unwatchable rubbish. At this point, Bansky claims to take over the footage and we get a narrative of how Guetta, on Banksy's flippant advice, turns himself into an artist with a penchant for selling derivative, crappy pop art at huge markup. Is it real? Is it a biting satire on art, media fame, a gullible public, and financial success? It's all of this and more! A great primer on street art and its successes. No one is truly "likable" in this film, but satire (or is it satire?) tends to be that way. And there's even a painted elephant.

Marwencol (2010) - More than a decade ago Mark Hogancamp nearly died from a beating he took from five men outside a bar in his small, New York town. The resulting brain damage forced him to relearn how to walk, talk. and deal with subsequent post-traumatic stress. An avid illustrator before the crime, Hoegancamp found he could no longer hold his drawing hand steady. So after his therapy is cut off from lack of funds, he begins building a fictional 1/6th scale Belgium town that exists during World War II, named Marwencol. His personal storyline grows as he builds each scene and photographs it. There's a bar, a store and a church populated by dolls representing himself and his friends. SS soldiers periodically show up and have to be dealt with, violently.

Thus Hogancamp (his name sounds like a WWII character name, doesn't it?) finds his way to self-therapy. His miniature buildings, vehicles, dolls and costumes are composed and lit in ways that are masterful. His photo work combines the look of movie stills, historical archives, and human interactions fraught with genuine emotion. There's realness and strangeness here, as Hogancamp reveals more of his personal life to director Jeff Malmberg's camera. Time travel, a blue-haired witch doll, bloody fights to the death (and women catfighting for entertainment), coexist with scenes of love and redemption.

Eventually Hogancamp is discovered by the art press and the gallery world. He must deal with his fears of the broader world, as well as anonymous, critical opinions. This film explores the emotional and physical benefits of being an artist and how frightening it can be to reveal a singular imagination. You can see Hogancamp's art on the Marwencol site.

Herb & Dorothy (2009) - Herb and Dorothy Vogel are hoarders in the best possible sense. Their focus and drive has amassed one of the finest and most extensive collections of modern art in the world. Most amazingly, Herb was a postal clerk and Dorothy a librarian for their entire working lives. They live in a tiny apartment in New York City and have dedicated themselves to the weirdest, most minimal, most conceptual art imaginable. Unlikely art heroes, both.

For the pure love of the medium, it's enjoyable to watch the Vogels during their travels around New York, visiting their artist friends, their favorite galleries, and their collection, which they treat with reverence and joy. Herb in particular looks at art with an intensity that is riveting. He is the "eye" of the couple. Dorothy is the drive. After giving up on their own youthful artistic dreams, they decided to become early supporters and collectors of then-unknown artists. Pop and abstract art were too expensive even in the early 60s, so they focused on minimalist work, which no one was interested in--yet. The concepts and ideas behind this difficult art-form fascinated them. And truly, they love the work, stuffing their apartment with it over several decades until there's barely a place to sit and eat.

Director Megumi Saski includes lots of interviews with the Vogels and their famous friends, including Sol LeWitt, Richard Tuttle, Pat Steir, Chuck Close, Lynda Benglis, Christo and Jeanne-Claude (who traded a piece of art to the Vogels for cat-sitting when the Vogels couldn't afford their work). The artists are bemused and articulate, relating stories of how they met this unassuming couple at the beginning of their careers. The importance of supporting starving young artists, who then reciprocated by giving the Vogels "deals" after they started to gain fame, led to an archive of artist development pretty much unprecedented. What the Vogels decide to do with their collection of nearly 5,000 works, is a very touching story of generosity. Not everyone will "get" their obsession with modern art, but the Vogels are a lesson of what good can come from diligence and honorable intent. A sequel is now in the works.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Celebrity Apprentice Hair Recap - Ep 1 Hero Worship

Hi and welcome to "Celebrity Apprentice" Hair Recap, Episode 1 - Hero Worship. I've never seen "The Apprentice." Donald Trump on my TV makes me break out in mental hives. And cutthroat business deals make me nervous in general. But I couldn't help noticing while flipping channels the other night how FABULOUS the hair was in this season's cast. One of the contestants even tried to name her team based on how great all their hair was. Celebrity hair is by nature more prone to fabulousness, but still...

So the celebrities are on two teams, men vs. women, and they have entrepreneurial competitions to raise money for their favorite charities. This week's episode proves that reality TV can make a competition out of anything--in this case sandwiches. The men, led by team leader Paul Teutul, Sr. for Make A Wish Foundation, won due to a single donor who paid $300,000 for a sandwich. That must have been one tasty sandwich.

Let's get to the hair, in no particular order. I was happy to see Clay Aiken's natural red hair all sticking out every which way. I'm partial to celebrity redheads. Singer/actress Aubrey O'Day's red hair, on the other hand is trying too hard. Adam Corolla has a nice head of thick hair, but future installments will definitely glorify Dee Snider's coif and Paul Teutuls' mutton chops--it's just harder to draw lighter hair and make it look right. Speaking of which, Victoria Gotti gets special props for the most incredible, stupendous, jaw-dropping hair. I don't even know how she accomplished this look--part Barbie, part thrift-store plushie. I'm going to hide out now.

And of course every week will feature Donald's hair.

Fired for being too nice and quiet: Cheryl Tiegs and her classic pageboy bob. 

Friday, February 17, 2012

A week that was truly Lost in Space

This nasty cold laid us out this week. Jackson was coughing like someone out of a 19th-century novel. I had to give him Robitussin and that stuff's nasty. That and an antihistamine helped him finally get some sleep last night, so he's doing better today. But an entire week of our lives was sucked away from us. SUCKED!

I got some mail art done and sketched some birds and tried to finish reading the big book of Conversations with Scorsese by Richard Schickel, but no writing got done. Hopefully this week I will catch up. Catch up to what, I don't know, since I'm completely flying to the sound of my own rotor blades, but no doubt fabulous future endeavors are in store for us.

Meanwhile, let's explore the television saga that was "Lost in Space," the low-budget staple of every American child growing up in the late 60s. By the mid-70s "Lost in Space" was on TV constantly, which was an accomplishment considering we barely had any TV networks or channels to choose from. I never liked this show much. It was too formulaic, but looking back now, that's its charm. Nearly everyone I know over the age of 35 knows where "Danger, Will Robinson!" and "Oh, the pain!" come from. And the "Promised Planet" episode with the endlessly go-go dancing counter-culture aliens--that's a damn classic.

The cast was very good, always playing it straight no matter how ludicrous the concept. A lot of us kids especially appreciated Billy Mumy as young Will Robinson, who rarely lost his logic-based cool when confronted by intimidating rubber-suited monsters. The fact that Will's parents regularly let him traipse off to parts unknown alongside the creepy, cowardly Dr. Smith was vaguely disturbing to me. I know Robot was along, but how protective would he be? He was built like a lit-up clothing rack on wheels.

One cool thing about the Robinson parenting style was their complete disregard for Will missing out on little league sign-ups and all-star soccer leagues. You should hear the parents of today talking about these all-encompassing activities, as if the future of mankind rests on their 8-year-olds' abilities on the playing field. At least Will's independent upbringing gave him advantages in advanced problem-solving and running away.

Otherwise, the show looked like it was filmed in a big garage space and Dr. Smith was SO ANNOYING. Why didn't they just push him into outer space at some point, like anyone with half a brain would have done?  The guy almost got them killed in every goddamn episode. When would the Robinsons grow a spine. WHEN?! Did being a decent person mean I had to look forward to a lifetime of kowtowing to treacherous psychopaths? What kind of television lesson was I learning here?

I had always hoped as a child that the very last episode would be the one where Dad Robinson left Dr. Smith behind, preferably on the howling banshee planet, but NO--so frustrating. Still, the robot was great. Rest in peace, voice of B9 Robot, Dick Tufeld--a large part of humorous childhood memories.

Youthful Aliens of the Promised Planet!
Will Robinson refuses to "get with the scene" because he's strictly squaresville
"Groovy, man!" - Dr. Smith regains his youth
The series trailer. I think CBS spent more money on this trailer than in three seasons combined. The Robot and Dr. Smith were not originally slated to be in the show at this point.

According to Wikipedia, Dr. Smith was originally scripted as an evil villain who gets killed off early on in the season. As played by Jonathan Taylor, Smith became more of a comical concept that quickly took over the show, causing tensions among some of the adult members of the cast (or "oldsters" as they were known on "The Promised Planet" episode).

Dr. Smith Saying Creature - This is quite possibly the best thing ever to be seen on the Internet.

Let's look at some classic clips from "Lost in Space," including fabulous paper-mâché monsters, Robot B9 being sassy, Dr. Smith screaming and flailing his arms about, and a flying Valkyrie. It was that kind of show.

 Bill Mumy would grow up to co-create Fish Heads.

I had completely forgotten that "Lost in Space" was made into a movie in 1998, starring Matt LeBlanc, desperately trying (and failing) to bust out of his Joey persona, William Hurt(!?) and Gary Oldman (!!?)  alongside a bunch of CGI bullshit. The trying-too-hard trailer is awash with metallic grays and explosive monotony.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Movies You May Have Missed - Attack The Block (2011)

Attack The Block! (shouted in a South London accent) What does that mean, exactly? The Block is a South London neighborhood that's being invaded by space aliens. A gang of youngsters and would-be criminals have to defend their 19-story council estate from untold horror. Sounds good, right? It is!

Writer and director Joe Cornish's first feature has received excellent reviews and is nominated for a BAFTA for Outstanding Debut. It's unusual for a mixed-genre film to be praised so heartily. Attack The Block is a clever and succinct blend of influences, including Alien, Goonies, Predator, and The Wire. It's produced by the team that made the great horror-comedy, Shaun of the Dead, so there are throw-away funny bits throughout the action-horror. And, most intriguingly, it's the film that asks the relevant question: who's is more terrifying--alien monsters with glowing fangs who will eat your head, or the drug dealer on the 19th floor with a gun, defending his turf?

On Guy Fawkes Day/Bonfire Night (a fireworks melee), a group of teenage boys, led with quiet charisma by Moses (John Boyega) are on their way to becoming genuine gangsters, mugging passerby, Sam, (Jodie Whittaker). Their escape by bicycle is interrupted when a glowing object smashes down onto a car nearby. Upon investigation, Moses, who hopes to ransack the crushed vehicle, is attached by something gruesome that tears off into the night. Moses decides that won't stand and the gang follows the creature to finish what was started.

From that point on--there is action--much action, involving fireworks, sirens, smoke, screaming, frantic running, homemade weaponry consisting of baseball bats and kitchen knives, that scary drug dealer guy with his sociopathic stare, and some really large, fast-moving aliens who cannot be reasoned with.

I confess I'm not a big watcher of modern monster films. The effects are so gruesome at this point, that it's too much like having a real nightmare. I was initially afraid that would be the case with this film--all kinds of gore and calculated jump cuts, but I commend Cornish for his lighter touch. There is just enough blood-letting to alter the emotional trajectory of our main characters, from street toughs, defending their block, to frightened youngsters, attempting to survive. And the alien invasion, on par with the menacing drug trade within their home, is a clever conceit. It's a turf war of galactic proportions.

Extremely unlikely heroes
Balancing out the mayhem is Ron (Nick Frost), an extremely laid-back worker-bee in the "weed room" upstairs, and rich-kid pothead, Brewis (Luke Treadaway)--adding stoner humor and startled reaction shots to the growing menace around them. So include Pineapple Express to the influences list above.

As the kids band together to protect first their block, then their building, and then their lives, they start to transcend their archetypes (stony silent leader, mouthy pest, angry guy, the one that wears glasses) and we see that there are no adults in their lives to help them out--certainly no one they think to call upon for help. And definitely not the police, since the kids are running from the police as much as from the aliens. Potential allies include a group of girls living in the building, two wannabe gangster kids with a squirt gun, and someone you wouldn't expect to join them, but who does, believably, due to thoughtful dialogue and circumstance. It's all a ripping good yarn.

Stoners join in as only stoners can
The cast is great. The kids have thick accents and use a lot of slang. But if you're renting the movie and get lost in the dialogue, just turn on the English subtitles. You may find yourself calling your friends "cuz" and "fam" afterward. Enjoy! They're all really photogenic kids and act so well together--I believed they were childhood friends, going in their wrong direction in a crud environment. As with much science fiction, I have quibbles with some of the plot. Where are all the adults during this explosive violence? Are they that inured to neighborhood violence? Can one police officer notice the alien body count alongside the human one? That's taking incompetence to a new level.

The Block becomes a fantastical place in this story

The effects are low-budget but clever and good fun. The suspense before monster jump cuts ratio was good, so I didn't feel too manipulated with terror--just hopeful that things would turn out all right somehow. A real respect for setting is obvious. The Block is a concrete and cold jungle with dark corners, deserted walkways, harshly lit empty hallways, peepholes, multiple locks, burglar gates--this is their home. It's bleak for children to grow up in, but it's also perfect for defending a monster attack. Cornish's majority-use of animatronic creatures over CGI adds a lot of weight to each scene with his actors. The young cast looks genuinely disturbed and increasingly frightened. It really humanizes them throughout the dark fairytale-quality of the story.

If you're searching for a rollicking fantasy/reality adventure--check this out.

Who would like this film:
-My brother--definitely, with the subtitles on.
-Your cool, adventurous friends, some of whom have been to England, others who have always wanted to go and so watch a lot of British comedy and films.
-Teenagers of many different backgrounds and classes.
-Your roommate with all the vintage filmmaking equipment and sci-fi paraphernalia in his tiny bedroom.
-Shaun of the Dead fans.

Who wouldn't like this film:
-Probably people who read a lot of Jane Austen and watch "Masterpiece Theatre," although that describes me, so there are always exceptions.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Oh how I wish that it would rain

Looks like Northern California is heading for a drought season. This is very unpleasant to contemplate. I'm going to focus on all things rainy and hope we can collectively conjure up a more beneficial weather pattern in the weeks ahead.

British Pathé's VintageFashions channel is a go-to place for retro-fashion madness. Check out the incredible Umbrella Styles from the 1950s--every one of them--a must have!

The Temptations - I Wish It Would Rain. The perfect distillation of weather as mood.

Jimi Hendrix - Rainy Day, Dream Away/Still Raining, Still Dreaming, with UV meters for extra nostalgia. Rain as a metaphor for gettin' high and lettin' the world pass byyyyyy.

Why not watch "Singin' in the Rain"--one of the greatest musicals ever produced? Forget the nonexistent snow conditions in the Sierras for a couple of hours while you relive the dawn of the sound-movie era.

Beta Band - Dry The Rain. Dag gum it, Beta Band--we need the rain. But California's gone through this before. I once belonged to a pick-up baseball league and we played throughout five winters of continuous drought conditions before it finally rained for a month straight (like it's supposed to, around here). Thereafter, baseball became a spring sport once more. Eventually it will rain again and we will be all right. (As featured in "High Fidelity.")

Update, Feb. 7, 2012: It worked! It poured all night and into the morning. Thanks, Internet dreams and wishes! Now I can get to work on that book deal, "You Can Achieve Anything You Want If You Just Post About It Enough."

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Celebrity Wife Swap poetry recap - Antonio Sabato, Jr./Mick Foley

It's wrap-up time for this season of Celebrity Wife Swap. It went by so fast! Especially when I think of all the poetry it's inspired for me. What other reality show could serve as my muse? None. Only Celebrity Wife Swap is worthy of lyrical recap thought processes.

And what a finale! World Wrestling Entertainment mega-star, best-selling author, and all-around good guy, Mick "Mankind/Cactus Jack" Foley, trades wives with Calvin Klein supermodel and General Hospital heartthrob, Antonio Sabàto, Jr. It's a night of stars and the women and children who live with them!

This would include Mick's wife of 17 years, former model Colette, and their four children who never help out mom around the house, and their poopy little dog, Randall. Then there's Sabàto's fiancé, Cheryl, a model and self-diagnosed clean-freak perfectionist with OCD issues (uh oh); plus Sabàto's nine-year-old daughter, Mina (actress Virginia Madsen's child--yo, star-studded!), and the couple's three-month-old baby, Antonio, Jr. (Jr. Jr.?).

Turns out Cheryl and Mina are both wrestling fans, so they're psyched about Mick Foley. And Colette, though a seemingly loving wife and mother, is more than thrilled to be hanging around some Antonio Sabàto, Jr. man-beauty, even if it's a temporary situation. When Foley finds out his wife is living with the former billboard-underwear model, he proclaims, "OK--that's a wrap! Everyone go home now!"

Given the epic nature of the show, I think a Sonnet is in order. With apologies to Shakespeare (and everyone else), I give you  

Celebrity Wife Swap - The Most Explosive Reunion Ever.

Celebrity Wife Swap, for now, must end
A season with too many memories to mention
But celebrities will be back to work on their brand
While attempting to lessen marital tensions

Mick Foley and Antonio Sabato, Jr.’s families blend
One, a laid-back mess, wrestling for fun
The other, a compulsive unit where cleaning’s a trend
Antonio’s abs appear in multitudes, so well done

Colette is tired of cleaning for six
Cheryl could clean for ten thousand or more
This is a recipe for potential conflicts
Or else the finale will be a big bore

Cheryl leaves 65 itemized tasks for Colette to do,
Six pages of notes on the refrigerator door
Colette has left nothing for Cheryl but doggie doo
On the luxurious tile of her kitchen floor

And that bothers Cheryl who likes everything just so
Dirt and clutter are like a pressure-cooker for her, Oh-Ho!

Colette takes care of the baby; Mina has chores and gymnastics
Antonio takes his shirt off for car-washing and workouts
And this causes Colette to be slightly lovesick
But she worries about Mina’s type-A-schedule and burnout

She’s seen kids like this, rebel and turn to drugs
Why can’t the family relax and chill for a bit?
She’s being realistic, and not a bit smug
But at least she doesn’t have to clean up dog shit

Cheryl is living in housekeeping purgatory
The kids never help and Mick’s always at work
He needs a make-over in this edited love story
Will Cheryl come through for the ABC Network?

Rules-change day! Colette says: time-out for some fun
Cheryl makes a list of chores to complete
Antonio’s not sure and appears to be stunned
While Mick’s kids complain like the 1% elite

But it all works out in the end, as usual
Slobs clean up their mess and compulsives have a ball

There are barbecues and miniature golf
Tidiness and walks on the beach
Dance lessons, dental work, and Mick’s new coif
Celebrities really are just like you and me

But reunion time is filled with strife
Cheryl feels attacked for her perfectionism
Perhaps there is jealousy over Anotonio’s new wife
Or OCD has contributed to this unfortunate schism

Cheryl feels shunned and profoundly dissed
She storms off in a huff with her mic on
Antonio is sorry, professing love for his lady pissed
But her patience and perhaps sanity are long gone

Cheryl is off to stay in a hotel while Mick and Colette say, pish!
That’s crazy talk, Cheryl. It must be hormones
To leave Antonio, who’s such a dish
And so ends Celebrity Wife swap--with a broken home

But wait! Two weeks later Cheryl’s back with Antonio
Like nothing happened and everything’s fine – Oh-Ho!

Relive this season's Celebrity Wife Swap poetic moments...if you dare!

Niecy Nash/Tina Yothers Haiku
Bowling Alone with Flavor Flav (and Dee Snider)
Gary Busey Loves a Good Beef Rib (with Ted Haggard)
Carnie Wilson Makes Pancakes (with Tracey Gold)

Don Cornelius - Soul Provider

I'm very sad about the passing of Don Cornelius, apparently of suicide. This man had a profound effect on my upbringing in the then white-bread deep East Bay. Although I was surrounded by infinite amounts of white people and their homogenized ways, my cousins were living in more urban environs and all of us bonded over Soul Train. Don Cornelius helped my more isolated suburban friends to have a broader musical background than if they had listened to only top-40 radio exclusively.

To be fair, top-40 radio was much more inclusive than radio of today. And even more inclusive than Internet radio, which tends to segregate itself into repetitive genre play. Don Cornelius was the glue that bound all the soul happenings of the 70s and 80s together. He had the best R&B, funk and soul bands on his show, as well as solo artists, black and white.

Don Cornelius was a television and music visionary, wearing a stylish suit and interviewing the hottest acts in his low, rumbling voice. He had us all line dancing every week, which was a great joy. He provided much happiness over the years and I already miss him.