Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year!

Wishing everyone a very Happy New Year! 

Thursday, December 29, 2011

You Know How I Feel About This!

For Sure!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all of you!  Hope your wishes come true! 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Real-Life Trivia

Last night The Stationary Bikers rode to victory!  We had some old and new members on our team and split off from the Smart Aces since we had eight.  More than that makes it hard to communicate.  We were in the noisy room sandwiched between the Budweismen (former Smart Aces, Sylvia Plath's Oven Mitt, Amelia Earhart's GPS, & Bell Jars, which was the name a couple of friends and I began) and the Frying Pans (formerly Nobody Likes a Smart Ace, etc.)  The noise level was horrendous!  The tables on each side of us had loud laughers and drinkers.  You know how it is when you aren't drinking and others are?  Well no, some of you don't, *cough* David and Maddie!  :-)

Anyway, Tim the Moderator plays loud music after he asked the question, so we can discuss our answers before writing them on the little papers provided to turn in to him.  We write ours down to show each other and agree or not, even though it's generally too loud to hear each other, much less understand what people at the other tables are saying.  My ears were still ringing for a while after I got home to my silent house.  I also had the added experience of Brendan talking constantly to me and hanging on my arm.

Despite all this, we managed to get our answers turned in.  Paige and Carl, Brian and Brendan, my brother Butch, Jennifer and Eric were the team, which made us heavy on the history side of things with a couple of English majors thrown in.  Carl, the engineer, came through on the 20-point question at the end, which asked in what city is the main street O'Connell, which put us comfortably in first place.  Somehow we came up with 4 out of 5 Katy Perry songs that tied her with Michael Jackson to have five #1 hits from the same album.  I even knew one of them from when I was keeping up with the Billboard charts.  Those were regular questions for a while.  It was a good night for asking things we knew.

Brain Blast Trivia has a page HERE on Facebook for those of you on there who might want to check it out.  We post our progress and comments now and then.  We had a great time but will not sit there again!  I enjoy the friendly competition and camaraderie.  Winning is a bonus for sure!

Friday, December 16, 2011

R.I.P Christopher Hitchens

Christopher Hitchens lost his battle with cancer, and we lost a brilliant mind.  There's an article about him HERE and this is an excerpt from The Sydney Morning Herald:
Vanity Fair's website reported that he died at the MD Anderson Cancer Centre in Houston, Texas, surrounded by friends, whom he described this year as "my chief consolation in this year of living dyingly". He wrote last year that "cancer victimhood contains a permanent temptation to be self-centered and even solipsistic".

Hitchens was known for his heroic intake of alcohol and cigarettes. He wrote in 2003 that his daily intake of alcohol was enough to "stun the average mule".

He said he had given up smoking in 2008, but journalist and author Peter FitzSimons, who interviewed him for his appearance at the 2010 Sydney Writers' Festival, said Hitchens had still been smoking as of last year.

Hitchens was a columnist for Vanity Fair and online magazine Slate and the author of The New York Times bestselling book God is Not Great.

His most recent book was Arguably, a collection of his essays.

He was a famous iconoclast and wrote critically of Mother Teresa, Bill Clinton and Winston Churchill.

Hitchens took a third-class degree in philosophy, politics and economics from Oxford, where he was a contemporary of Mr Clinton.

He later wrote about his gay experiences at Oxford in Hitch-22, including a dalliance with two unnamed future members of Margaret Thatcher's cabinet.

He left university and joined the Times Higher Education Supplement but was fired within six months, and went on to write for New Statesman magazine, working alongside novelists Julian Barnes, Martin Amis and Ian McEwan.

His brother Peter is a conservative columnist for the the Daily Mail in London.
- with James Robertson

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Made in America

If you haven't finished your Christmas shopping and/or would like to have a list of companies and brands made in America, look HERE.  There are also other places to find them as well as on the boxes and labels.  And HERE is Diane Sawyer's report about it.  Pennsylvania makes Crayola Crayons and Slinkies.  I try to buy locally first and American second, but it's not easy to find things.  Wouldn't that solve many of our unemployment and financial problems to bring work back here?  I saw a report about how many companies have sham offices in other countries so they can say that's where their home office is in order to avoid taxes, etc.  They made an effective case for it.  Some kind of compromise needs to be worked out, so people can work!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Rip-Off Trivia

Japan’s Buddhist establishment has been under attack over the practice of charging bereaved, vulnerable relatives huge fees for afterlife names given to the dead at their funerals. The tradition is centuries-old, and began with names being conferred only on Buddhist priests. When temples began granting afterlife names to common people, the names became something akin to a ranking system, reflecting the deceased’s noble actions during life. The highest rank, called ingo, costs more than $8,300. Of the average $5,300 paid to temples for Tokyo funeral fees, about $3,300 goes for the posthumous name. Talk about making a killing!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

German Trivia I Like

In ancient Germany, Heidenwerfen was the popular word for bowling. It means "strike down the heathens"

Friday, December 9, 2011

Sponsor Trivia

In March 1996, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell cancelled their $5.4 million sponsorship of ABC’s new The Dana Carvey Show after some of Carvey’s humor "went too far." One sketch that offended the sponsors featured a dancing taco that kept telling Carvey that he was a "whore" for pushing the sale of Pepsi products.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Flashing Trivia

Early handheld lights used carbon-zinc batteries that did not last very long. To keep the light burning required that the user turn it on for a short time and then turn it off to allow the battery to recover. That’s how they originally became known as a flashlight.

Sunday, December 4, 2011


I started my first blog in 2002 (Joy's Updates: Straight from the Horse's Mouth) and now have this one.  In that time, I've logged 3540 posts, not counting this one, in 9 years.  That averages to 394/year and 1.08/ day.  It's those .08 posts that make the difference, I think.  This is one of them.

Did Not Know This About Richard Cœur de Lion

The average life span of London residents in the middle of the nineteenth century was 27 years. For members of the working class, it was 22 years. Berengaria, queen of England and wife of Richard the Lionhearted, never set foot in England. She lived in Italy most of her life while her husband was off on adventures and crusades.

According to what I've read, he was called Richard the Lionheart, not Lionhearted.

Saturday, December 3, 2011


This explains why they're at once strong, calm and luminous.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Repeat Trivia

On his way home to visit his parents, a Harvard student fell between two railroad cars at the station in Jersey City, New Jersey, and was rescued by an actor on his way to visit a sister in Philadelphia. The student was Robert Lincoln, heading for 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. The actor was Edwin Booth, the brother of the man who a few weeks later would murder the student’s father.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

How Do I Spell Relief?

Today is the 3rd day in a row that I've felt good.  I mean really good for the first time in so many years I can't remember.  Please, cross fingers, light candles, wish, pray, send healing thoughts, be happy, or whatever you do to hope this continues!  I'm not spending as much time on the computer and watching TV.  I'm actually doing things, and it is such a relief.  I hope it continues and gets even better.  Please!!

Monday, November 28, 2011

For Froggy

You Know Who You Are (and so do I)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Blond Trivia

During the Renaissance, blondes definitely had more fun. Blond hair for women became so much de rigueur in Venice that a brunette was not to be seen except among the working classes. Venetian women spent hours dyeing and burnishing their hair until they achieved the harsh metallic glitter that was considered a necessity.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope everyone has a very Happy Thanksgiving however you choose to spend it!!  I'm thankful for you all! 

DWTS Results

Guess we all know by now that J.R. Martinez won DWTS.  Rob Kardashian was 2nd and Ricki Lake 3rd.  Some of our predictions were right on target! 

Now we have to wonder who will be on the next season. 

Monday, November 21, 2011

DWTS 13 - Week 10 - The Finals

Each team performs two dances this week.  Everyone does the free-style, and Ricki and J.R. are dancing the cha cha while Rob does a waltz. 

Carrie Ann helped Ricki during rehearsal and gave her some pointers about being sexy during her dance.  The judges do this every season when it's down to the final three.  Ricki had great rhythm, footwork, and energy with this cha cha,  She looks great and has lost a lot of weight as well as increased muscle tone.  I should dance.  The judges praised her performance and all gave her 9's for a 27. 

Bruno stopped by to help Rob.  His and Cheryl's waltz was graceful, elegant, good.  All the Kardashians were cheering him on along with Bruce-tox Jenner.  Tremendous improvement!  They also got all 9's for a total of 27. 

Len gave J.R. advice about moving his hips and arms better.  Len can dance.  I wish we could see the judges dance sometime.  This was a lively, sexy, happy cha cha.  I would like to see Karina win since Derek and Cheryl have won so many times; however, there is a reason they do.  They are both great teachers who bring out the best in their partners and make them better.  Len said this dance wasn't that good because J.R. got off time and that his enthusiasm got the best of  him.  Bruno said he was in character and gave an enthusiastic performance.  Their scores were all over the place:  7, 8, and 9 = 24.

Derek has won every time he's been in the finals, and Ricki feels the pressure.  He said every time he's been hard on her that she did really well.  I've never seen that side of him!  They started their free-style with a big photo of Ricki when she started DWTS and she ran through it letting the dance begin.  This was a mixture of a salsa and quickstep.  Their costumes were black and white.  Derek's was black trousers and a white dinner jacket.  Ricki's was a white sparkly top and black and white feathery skirt.  The judges liked it and gave them 9's again for 27 and a total of 54 out of 60. 

Kristie Alley was in the audience sitting next to Maks and making him laugh and cover his face.  No telling what she's saying!!  Wish I could hear it. 

Rob and Cheryl did a 20's style free style complete with music and costumes.  Wow!  Good footwork, Rob!  Fun dance!  The judges raved!!  They got 30!!!  This gives them 57 for the night!  Cheryl rocks and Rob really improved and also rocked!

J.R. and Karina did a Latin dance.  There were a lot of scary flips including one strange one where J.R. jumped on Karina, but she seemed OK.  Btw, Karina's body is fabulous perfection, and we saw quite a lot of it tonight.  Carrie Ann and Brooke both said something about that, and it seems as if she sort of blanked out and he helped her through it.  She felt a lot of pressure since she's not used to being in the finals.  The judges loved it and gave them a 30!  They have a 54 for their total. 

Who will win?  It could be any of them and is up to the voters.  It's partly about who dances best and mostly about fan base.  Who do you think will win? 

Friday, November 18, 2011

Big Trivia

 The biggest fish in the world are the whale shark at 50,000 pounds, the basking shark at 32,000 pounds, the great white shark at 7,000 pounds, the Greenland shark at 2,250 pounds, and the tiger shark at 2,070 pounds.

Basking Shark

Whale Shark

Tiger Shark
Great White Shark

Thursday, November 17, 2011


So so so true!!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Clever Bunny

DWTS Results

Guess we all know by now that the finalists are Ricki, J.R., and Rob.  All that's left now is the freestyle and the voting.  The freestyle had won it for some and lost it for others.  Yes, Marie Osmond, I'm talking to you.  Guess she sold some dolls though. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Monday, November 14, 2011

DWTS 13 - Week 9

Almost to the end here.  Four couples are left before J.R. and Ricki are in the finals and then J.R. wins.  Popular sentiment seems to be with him, and he can dance.  We'll see.

They have three dances tonight in the semi-finals - either a samba or paso doble, an Argentine tango for all, and a group cha cha. 

I've sort of lost interest in recapping this, so I'll just do a cursory description.

Rob was really good.  All of his dances were great, which is a credit to his professional partner/teacher Cheryl Burke.  She's excellent at bringing out the best in the celebrities she's with.  Several have been in the finals and some have won.  She's quite the task master and choreographs to their strengths.  Rob has improved dramatically.

Hope and Maks had the lowest scores, which I thought were too low at times.  Hope has also improved but is still awkward as a dancer.  Maks has been so nice since that week he was a douche that Tom said, "Wow, it's the new Stepford Maks!"  Hope is in all kinds of pain.  Her shoulder has anchors in it where it was torn and had Novocaine shots in her shoulder she was saving to have during the Olympics.  She spoke out to the judges some, and Maks tried to get her not to.  She has some attitude now. 

J.R. hurt his ankle during rehearsal but soldiered through.  As usual, he danced well and got good scores but not as high as he has been.

Ricki rocked!  All of her dances were great with the scores to show it!  Well done!

They showed pieces about hardships and struggles each of the celebrities have been through.  It was good to learn more about them.

The cha cha was a contest with Rob in first place with 10 points, Ricki next with 8, J.R. with 6, and Hope with 4.  

Final Scores are: 
Ricki - 67
Rob - 65
J.R. - 56
Hope - 49

Sunday, November 13, 2011


Global warming. Evolution. Nature not nurture. It's time to put this out there plainly.
By: George Takei

For anyone who has taken chemistry!


Can't help it.  I think it's funny!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


My friend Janey is here visiting family and has been living in Australia for over 20 years.  She teaches in a law school there and is married and has three Australian children.  She went with us to trivia last night, and we all had lots of fun.  We're going to have to come up with a new team name.  Any suggestions are welcome.  Last night we had Paige, Carl, Sue, Janey, and me, and we did pretty well.  We didn't win because we missed the last question, which asked who was the first President to be born in a hospital.  We wrote Nixon but it was Carter. 

Janey said she knew she was living in the right country when no big deal was made about their new prime minister.  Julia Gillard is their first female Prime Minister.  She's never been married, lives with a man she's not married to who is a hairdresser, has no children, and is an atheist.  I've said before that atheists are in the last group to be elected here if they admit it.  They are discriminated against with no apology. 

If it weren't so far away, I know I'd like living there.  The more she tells me about the educational system, healthcare, and way of life, the more I like it.  I'm not sure I'd get used to driving on the "wrong side" of the road but could possibly adjust.  I'd have to get my family to move there, so I guess I'll stay here and deal with it.  (sigh)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


I've been studying for our trivia game.  They give hints on their Facebook page, Brain Blast Trivia.  Wish us luck!!  I might have a shot with those songs from yesteryear and movie quotes but not with horror movies and super heroes.  Some of the guys on our team do, though.  Presidents is a category that depends.  Some of the information I know and some not.  That's why it's good to have a team!  I wonder if that "Holy Diver" clue is about Pat Boone's cover when he recorded that heavy metal album attempt.  Yikes! 

Here's what they hinted:  Get a Presidential whiz on your team today because today's final question is no joke... its a tough one. By request, look for Horror Films, Super Heroes, and Movie Quotes in today's game...and today's music related questions feature some songs of yesteryear. Bonus clue: Just say NO to the "Holy Diver"

DWTS Week 8

Tonight several of the dancers improved quite a bit.  Not Nancy Grace.  It's time for her to go.  Tristan is getting tired of her constant interruptions and not listening to him.  Len said she was like Cinderella and got to go to the ball but that it's midnight and time for her to go home.

Maks was nice to Hope this week and apologized for how rough he's been.  She told him she has too many insecurities with dancing and needs his hand held out in support.  So we saw a kinder gentler Maks who took her to meet his family for a dinner his mother cooked for all of them.  It made a big difference. Their quickstep was fun.  Hope seemed relaxed and had fun with it.  She was much better. 

Rob has definitely improved and is learning to dance.  Well done tonight!  Cheryl is strict and can bring out the best in her partners.

Ricki's waltz was beautiful!  She's looking good, too, and has lost quite a bit of weight and firmed up.  She apologized for not doing well on the jive, and Derek was so sweet to her. 

All the couples had two dances.  Their second dance was the instant dance where they rehearsed the jive all week and chose their song by drawing a CD out of a basket.  Then they had 20 minutes to put the dance to music and practice.

J.R. and Karina got 60 points - 30 for each dance!  All 10's from each judge and lots of praise.  They were very good.  He'll probably win.

Second scores are for the jive: 
J.R. and Karina - 30 (Waltz) + 30 = 60
Ricki and Derek - 28 (Waltz)  + 24 = 52
Hope and Maks - 27  (Quickstep)  + 25 = 52  A 9 from Len!!
Rob and Cheryl - 27  (Quickstep)  + 24 = 51
Nancy and Tristan - 24  (Tango) + 20 = 44

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Brunch with my BPF (Best Phone Friend) and Bill

The food wasn't perfection but the company was!!  We just didn't have a long enough visit. 

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Good Sunday Coming Up

Tug is going through here to make a delivery, so we're meeting at O'Charley's tomorrow for brunch!  I'm looking forward to it! 

Friday, November 4, 2011

Dumb Aces

I've waited a while to tell you about trivia Tuesday night for reasons you'll soon learn.  I got there and was led to a table for 8 and waited for my team to show up.  And waited.  I knew Tina wasn't coming because she was sick and that Paige and Carl wouldn't be there because of her knee.  So I texted Hope and Sue with, "I have friends in no places.  I'm by myself."  Hope replied that she and her fiance were at Wal-Mart and she'd try to talk him into coming.  Sue showed up right after I texted since she was just coming in the restaurant when she got my text.

I guilted Hope into coming.  Her fiance was an unwilling participant but came through with many answers because he knows geeky stuff and is young.  Since we had four of our team the Smart Aces there, we called ourselves the Half Aces and were doing well.  We each knew answers and all knew some of the same ones.  A few not so much.

At the end we had 66 points and so did the Kernels, a team of teachers we know and are competitive with, and Nobody Likes A Smart Ace, our friendly competition team we trash talk with and always beat, had 79.  When we win, they are usually in second place.  We knew they had it and that we had to bid 20 points no matter what on that last question.  We had nothing to lose since we were already behind.  Tension mounts!

Last question:  In which city are the Frick, 2nd St. So, and Whitney Museums located?  I knew it!  NYC!!  Yes!  Hope and Nathan had no idea.  Sue was sure it was Boston and justified her answer.  I told her I was pretty sure it was NYC.  Had I thought to tell her the Frick Building is in NYC, it would have helped.  Had I mentioned that the Sex and the City women mentioned going to an opening at the Whitney, that might have been convincing.  But had I mentioned that I used to teach art history and recall that many paintings in my art history book were in the Whitney (not to mention the obvious - David's and Maddie's blogs), she would have believed me.  I gave in.  I don't know why.  I was too polite.  No more nice guy.  I should have been more insistent and should have stood up for myself.  But no.  My first thought was that David would be so disappointed in me.  Then I thought about Maddie.  Sorry so sorry!

The Kernels won with 86 points.  We would have tied them and had a tie-breaker question and could have won.  Tug said we are the most self-destructive team!  True!  Nobody Likes A Smart Ace lost because they put the wrong answer.  Now you know.  :-(

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

DWTS - Week 7

Halloween theme with costumes and some fun.

David and Kym danced a tango as a magician and assistant.  David brought in an illusionist to teach him a trick to use at the beginning.  They said they couldn't find the prop before they went on and were disappointed.  Good job!  David has improved and was praised by the judges.  Score - 24. 

Karina and J.R. did a tango to the song from Ghostbusters.  The tempestuous Karina stormed around at J.R. during rehearsal, but he stayed cool.  It was a disagreement in how he wanted to learn the steps and her being major diva control freak.  Thank goodness she and Maks didn't get married and have children!  Those little kids would have no choice but to be dramatic little Russians living in the USA!  It might be that way no matter who each of them marries but how volatile with the two of them!  Karina said the challenge with their dance is that Ghostbusters is fun and the tango is polar opposite.  J.R. "I ain't afraid of no tango" danced well but didn't have the footwork for the tango he should have.  Len said he set the bar so high from his previous performances that this was not up to his standards.  His scores from the judges was 25.

Nancy and Tristan's jive was fun and lively.  Nancy was doing a less lively version, however.  During rehearsal Nancy interrupted Tristan again and asked if in his Irish way he was saying she wasn't fun.  He rather tersely said, "No, I'm trying to finish a sentence."  Loved it!  The judges said this was not her best dance and gave her a unanimous 21.

Rob and Cheryl did a good tango to The Addams Family theme song.  His sister Kourtney and her toddler were in costume.  Her baby daddy wasn't.  I thought Coco Arquette might be, too, which would be cute, but she and Courtney Cox were in regular clothes.  The judges said this was Rob's best dance.  Bruno said his bum stuck out, but he has that Kardashian butt and can't help it.  Cheryl said he has a bum, and Bruno said it's OK to have one but you have to know what to do with it.  See what I mean about Bruno?  Score - 25.  Tied with J.R.!

Ricki and Derek were Snow White and the Big Bad Wolf.  They are doing the paso doble.  Ricki hurt her rib, and the doctor said it's an inflamed nerve, very serious, and requires rest.  Instead, he bandaged it and from how she danced probably gave her a cortisone shot or more.  This was a good paso!  Her costume was heavily corseted, so maybe the adrenaline of performing carried her through it.  The judges agreed and gave her all 9's for 27 points!

Hope and Maks danced a samba.  Maks hurt his toe and brought in someone from the troupe to work with Hope while he choreographed and critiqued.  Hope said she enjoyed working with Teddy and had more fun than with Maks.  It shows.  She was looser and seemed to enjoy the performance.  Maks got frustrated and asked why he's the only one who can see several moves ahead and that he isn't always this way but can be fun.  The judges could see the difference and enjoyed the dance.  Score - 24.

Now for the team dances.  J.R. and Ricki got to pick teams since they were leaders last week.  J.R.'s team danced first and had the tango.  David  and Nancy were on his team.  Nancy was the weakest link on the team.  J.R. was the best.  David got a 9 on his tango and helped J.R. with some of the holds and posture.  He was good, too, and I just love the way Coco looks at him.  So sweet!  All three of the judges said their team part was good but that the individual dances were not.  This team score is added to their other score and is 23, which helps some of them and not others.

Team Paso Doble had Ricki, Hope, and Rob.  Their rehearsal went well except for Maks being a prick to Hope.  It made the others uncomfortable.  The expression on Rob's face when it was going on made me like him even more.  He obviously didn't like it when Maks popped her on the shoulder and then sort of whipped her around.  Maks stormed out in frustration, and Derek stepped right in and showed Hope what to do.  I feel sorry for her with Maks and think he needs to take next season off unless he gets another partner who can handle how he is and dances well.  He made a scene and made everyone uncomfortable.  I'm losing interest in him.  Hope danced better tonight possibly because she had a break from him with those other guys.  I wish she'd had another partner, who could have helped her relax and learn without all that drama.  I believe the paso team will have a high score.  Well done!!  Standing ovation!  Praise from the judges!  Score - 26.

Maks complained in an interview that he could do as well as Derek if he'd had the partners he had.  Not true!  Maks has had some talented, committed, excellent partners.  Derek treats his with respect, dignity, and encouragement.  Derek finds the potential of his partners and choreographs to their strengths.  Maks bullies his.  Some respond to that and many don't.  I don't do well with that kind of treatment and would do better with Derek.  So would Hope as she would with some of the others who would treat her better.  

PS ...  Apparently I forgot to click "publish" last night when I wrote this.  I looked and it wasn't there.  I was really tired and sleepy last night and didn't feel good.  I didn't even watch House or Castle that were recorded but went to bed and slept about 10 hours. 

Monday, October 31, 2011

So True!

Saturday, October 29, 2011


After Jim Pass died and his business closed where I used to work part-time, the Chinese restaurant in the other part of the building also closed.  In their place a new Mexican restaurant opened, Las Fajitas, which will celebrate its one-year anniversary next week.  A few months after opening, they started having a trivia game every Tuesday night, but I couldn't go because that's when I was auditing those college classes.

Some of us wanted to go and finally Paige, her daughter Virginia, and I made it.  Teams have to have names, so we called ourselves The Bell Jars.  Not exactly sure why but that's our morbid sense of humor.  We're not suicidal ... at least not now.  Tina and Hope joined us along with Paige's husband Carl.  During the summer Brian and Brendan came down and played.  We've added and subtracted various team mates and have a friendly competition with this other team who said they were going to name themselves The Hammers so they could beat us.  Not so far!!

Anyway, we finally have a most excellent team by adding some guys Hope teaches with.  So it's the four of them, Hope, Tina, Sue, and me.  Paige and Carl will be rejoining us now that she's doing better after her knee replacement.  We have been winning or placing second most weeks except when we talk ourselves out of a right answer or betting the wrong amount.  Our new team name is Smart Aces.  That team that keeps not beating us is Nobody Likes a Smart Ace. 

This is how the game works - there are three rounds of three questions.  We can put 2, 4, or 6 points on each question of each set.  So we have to decide how sure we are of a question.  Tim, the host, announces the categories.  He asks the first question which we write on a little notepad provided us and turn a sheet in after each question.  Tim announces the scores after the first round.  Then we have a question with 5 parts that count two points each.  After that are 3 questions we write on one sheet and assign 3, 5, and 10 points to.  Tim announces the scores before the final question which we bet from 0 to 20 points on.  This has been the downfall or victory part several times.

Our trivia game is Brain Blast Trivia and has a page on Facebook.  Tim posted our photo on it last week.  I asked him to take one of us on my phone and posted it on my FB page and down below.  This is so much fun whether we win or lose.  Twice we missed only one question and are going for a perfect score.  We lost big time week before last because we outwitted ourselves on that last question.  Nobody Likes a Smart Ace did, too, so they lost by more than we did.  Someone way behind got the right answer but put 20 points on it.  We got the right answer and put 0 points.  See what I mean?

What helps is that we have team members from a range of ages, some with young children, and some with various interests.  Our weakness is sports, but sometimes we luck up.  We have four English teachers, one history teacher, a fifth-grade teacher, an art history major, a military person, a science teacher, and several science fiction and Monty Python geeks.  We do well as long as we don't self-destruct.  Prizes are gift certificates for first, second, and third place for meals there. 

Tina, Paige, and Carl weren't in this photo, and Brian and Brendan don't drive down from Nashville while school is going on.  They did week before last when Brendan had fall break.   Here we are - the Smart Aces right after a win!

That's my t-shirt I bought at Old City Coffee in the Reading Street Market when Tina and I went to Philadelphia.  It has a caffeine molecule on it. Such wonderful memories of spending time with my nephews, Maddie and David!!


It is COLD here already!  It's been in the 40's during the day and 30's at night.  It got into the 50's today but is supposed to be 29 tonight.  Frost has been predicted.  I realize it's snowing other places - also too early!  This makes me wonder if we're going to have another blizzardy winter like last year. 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Tempest in a Dancing Teapot

For those of us who have watched DWTS ever since it began, we know how Bruno is over the top with his praise and criticism.  He is enthusiastic to say the least!  So ... when he said that Chaz was like "a cute little penguin trying to be a big menacing bird of prey," it was a commentary on his dancing and his performance.  The tango is the ballroom version of the paso doble and both are dances of seduction and the passion of love and hate.  Chaz didn't pull any of that off.  He actually did look like a cute little penguin in his tux and like a cuddly Ewok in his furry vest but not a fat troll as Chaz interpreted it.  Chaz is fat.  Who can deny that?  He can't dance well.  Obviously.  He's not an actor and couldn't manage to play a role required of some of the dances.  He's the daughter of iconic celebrities who had a double mastectomy and takes testosterone.  His girlfriend said that's made him more aggressive and angry.  'Roids, anyone?  Legally he's a man, however that's done, who wanted to help others in the same situation who could be inspired by his appearance on the show.  That's a separate issue.  Bruno is gay, flaming even, and has probably been around transgendered people.  Not the point. They were all very PC about Chaz.  That's just how Bruno gives critiques.  Cher admits that she never watched the show before Chaz was on and took offense at the criticism of the judges when they were actually kinder to Chaz than to many other celebrity competitors who are and have been on DWTS.  There are probably others who had their feelings hurt, too, but it's part of being judged, isn't it? 

Maks is another deal altogether.  He blows up at the judges periodically.  Bet there were all kinds of fireworks when he and Karina were engaged! 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

DWTS Results

Well, it happened.  Chaz is gone.  OK then.

Monday, October 24, 2011

DWTS 13 - Week 6

It's Broadway musical night and no Carson Kressley.  He should be on and Chaz should not.  He was graciously in the audience.  I just love him!

Rob and Cheryl danced a cha-cha from the Jersey Boys song "Walk Like A Man" (which I'm glad wasn't the song Chaz got because that would have been ironic).    Btw, some of you might remember that I'd just seen Jersey Boys when I missed the last step outside TPAC, fell, and got all kinds of attention.  It was right after Natasha Richardson's sudden death from her head injury when she was skiing.  Several theater-goers asked if I'd hit my head and gathered around me.  I assured them that it was my knees and hands that hit the sidewalk and not my head.  On to the dancing ...  Well, I have to say that Rob showed more personality than he has been (which still isn't much - maybe he's just shy).  He sort of fumbles around on the dance floor and doesn't have much rhythm, but it was OK.  Len said he was stiff and starchy, and who knows what Bruno and Carrie Ann were trying to say.  Score - 22

Nancy and Tristan danced the foxtrot to "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" from Spamalot, which is coming to TPAC in January.  I missed it last time it was on and plan to go then since Monty Python and the Holy Grail is my favorite movie.  Another memory with this is when I was talking with my residents when I had neck surgery after the chemo massacre and told them when I got there that I wasn't quite dead.  They launched into lines from the movie and how we all laughed!!  But I digress.  Nancy is getting on Tristan's nerves.  Surprise!  She wants to make their routines more difficult but when he adds that to it, she doesn't learn it or complains that it wasn't what she had in mind.  Since when is she a choreographer?  The judges said this was a good job and entertaining.  I didn't think she did that well and looked stiff and unmusical.  Len said so, too.  Score - 24.

Tom Bergeron is so good at moving the show along, smoothing ruffled feathers, and adding humor.  He introduced Carson who was invited back since it was Broadway musical week.  He said he was the creative director of the group dance and was there cheering them on.  Very funny moment when Maks stumbled and Carson rushed to him and said, "Oh no!  You could have died!" and hugged him.  Any excuse!  I get it.

David and Kym did a quickstep to "We Go Together" from Grease.  I don't have any interesting memories from this play/movie except that I was a teenager in the late 50's and early 60's.  David wears thin after a while.  His voice is kind of smarmy and his giggle when he talks is annoying.  I'm glad he shaved.  He looks better and danced well, too.  I like him better when he doesn't talk.  Courtney and Coco were there as always.  I think maybe Coco resembles her aunt Patricia, but it's hard to tell for sure that young.  The judges said he was entertaining and energetic.  Score - 23. 

Ricki and Derek also did the quickstep.  Their song was "Luck Be A Lady"  from Guys and Dolls.  It would have been wrong for them to have a song from Hairspray.  Unfair advantage.  Loved this performance!  Entertaining, energetic, sophisticated, and wow!!  Ricki looked smashing in a gold dress.  Might just see some 10's on this!  The audience and judges thought so, too!  They raved!  Score - 29!  Don't know why Len didn't give them a 10, too, after he said he loved it.

Chaz and Lacey are dancing a tango to Phantom of the Opera.  OMG!  OMG!  OMG!  I don't know if I can watch this.  I have a commercial to prepare for it.  The tango is an intense, passionate give and take of love and hate and is the ballroom version of the paso doble.  The good dancers usually get really hot and heavy during it.  I don't want to watch Chaz try to act passionate to Lacey.  Sorry.  Just don't.  He cannot dance and stumbles around awkwardly.  He wore a tuxedo and the mask and got through the routine.  The mask helped.  The judges said this role wasn't suited to his personality.  In fact, Bruno said it was like a cute little penguin trying to be a big menacing bird of prey.  So true!  So far Bruno has called Chaz an Ewok and now this.  Cher tweeted about it and was obviously pissed.  Score - 19.  I'd like to think that low score will eliminate Chaz, but it never stops the Cher fans from voting for him, especially now that they are in an uproar about Bruno.  Check the Twitter outrage.  It's past time for him to go.

Hope and Maks danced a rumba to a song from Rent.  Hope dances like an athlete.  Maks brought in three women dancers from the troupe to help her which did when they were there but not the next day.  He kept telling her to hold her hand out like a girl.  Tug thinks she's a lesbian, which might explain why she responded better to the women dancers and said she wished she could be half as sexy as they are.  The judges said Hope is still holding back and then an argument broke out.  Really!  A big one!  Maks talked back to Len and said how much the contestants put into their dances and how hard they worked.  He was defending Hope.  Len said it's not just about effort but dancing and that half of the criticism went to Maks.  It went downhill from there!  Then when Brooke talked with them before the score, Maks said this was his show and that he helped make it what it is.  Whew!  The judges got even with their scores!  Wonder if Maks will quit the show after this season.  He butts heads with Len especially and this got uncomfortable to watch.  I hope not.  He is easy to look at and has helped make the show what it is.  Score - 20. 

J. R. and Karina danced a quickstep to a lively song from All That Jazz.  It was the most difficult choreography Karina said she's done on the show and added that she has faith in his ability to do it.  And he did!  It was lively, energetic, precise, and fun.  Wow!  Score - 29! 

The group dance was to "Big Spender" and "Money Money"  from Sweet Charity and Cabaret.  Even I know that Sweet Charity was choreographed by Bob Fossey and have heard how difficult and precise his dances are from a special Shirley MacLaine did on TV.  Probably the choreographer Kevin Maher is doing his own thing for this and not necessarily having them do it the way it was on the stage.  What an enjoyable performance!  Good job!

Ricki and J.R. are still at the top and will be the finalists.  It's anybody's guess who will go tomorrow night.  Chaz and Hope are on the bottom of the leader board, but the voters will speak.  We know who I think should go, but it could be Hope, Rob, Nancy, or David.  I can't predict. Next week they'll have two dances, I think.  If not, it will be soon.  That is hard on them and weeds more out. 

Friday, October 21, 2011

Cleveland & Olympics Trivia

Cleveland Stadium was built for what became a failed attempt by the city to host the 1932 Olympic Games. Of the 192 countries on Earth, 3 of them, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, and Vatican City, have no National Olympic Committees.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Homo Trivia

Oddly, in ancient Greece no term existed for homosexuality, there were only some expressions referring to specific homosexual roles. Experts find this baffling, as the old Greek culture held love between males in the highest regard. According to several linguists, the word homosexual was not coined until 1869 by the Hungarian physician Karoly Maria Benkert.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


I expected it but am still pissed off.  Chaz remains on the show and Carson was voted off.  Neither is a good dancer, but Carson is entertaining.  Chaz is not.  It's time for the Cher followers to back off.  Point made.  Now time for Chaz to go. 

This is the way I reacted when Master P, Billy Ray Cyrus, and Kate Gosselin stayed on way too long and people who could dance were gone.  So there! 

Monday, October 17, 2011

DWTS 13 - Week 5

This week - the 80's.  Not my favorite decade musically.  Disco?  Shoulder pads?  Big hair? 

The Bangles opened the show with a medley that included "Walk Like An Egyptian."  This set the tone. 

Hope and Maks did the tango.  They don't have much chemistry together, and she still seems uncomfortable dancing.  Still, they got all 8's with a score of 24.  A tango is supposed to show the battle between love and hate.  There was give and take but no passion.  Technically she's doing well, but doesn't have the musicality.  She's better than several others for sure, though.  They are showing child pictures of everyone from the 80's.  Maks looks like the Keebler elf, Tom said.  Maks said he had been kicked out of a school play because he was bad.  Hope said she had on a dress.  They were cute. 

Carson and Anna dance a jive.  Maybe he'll do better with this if he can keep under control.  He's such an entertainer, and I hope he stays a while.  Well, it was definitely fun and lively.  They were cheerleaders!  He did better.  Bruno said it was a crowning achievement in madness and that he crammed so much nonsense into a minimal jive.  Carrie Ann agreed.  Len said if he were judging with his heart, Carson would be back next week but he has to judge with his head.  Carson said let's let America decide and was not discouraged.  Aww, their score was 19.  No pictures of them as kids.  :-(  Carson said he was class of '87 which means he's Brian's age. 

Nancy and Tristan did a rumba which is supposed to be intense and passionate.  Nancy said she was a cheerleader in the 80's.  Tristan told Nancy to let him finish his sentences and that he'd seen her to this on her show.  They bickered a while and she finally listened to him.  The judges said she seems to hold back but that she danced well.  Score is 22.

J. R. and Karina danced a samba.  He said being Latin should help him with the samba since he grew up dancing with his mother.  Karina said his dancing was un-Latin, so they went to the Conga to experience the music and dancing.  The drummer was Sheila E.  He said this week the judges would see Jose Rene Martinez dance.  He did it!  Lively and exciting!  The audience and judges loved it.  Score is 28 with a 10 from Bruno!

Rob and Cheryl did a rumba.  Cheryl said he had to learn to treat her in a sexy way instead of like one of his sisters.  Romeo came in to help him with it.  They're friends and went to USC together.  He almost got it and did much better.  It was a good dance.  The judges praised him.  Score - 25.

Chaz and Lacey did a samba.  Lacey brought her dad, a world-famous dance coach and the King of Swing, in to show Chaz that big men can shake it.  Well, Chaz did better but I'm so ready for him to be voted off.  He's in the category of those it's painful to watch try to dance.  Why can't they say to him what they do to Carson about technique?  And Chaz isn't entertaining like Carson is!  Score - 21.
David and Kym did a tango.  Woo Hoo!  Good job!  He danced and showed the emotions the need to go with a tango.  The judges said he's improved and could be a contender.  Score - 25.

Ricki and Derek danced a foxtrot.  John Waters came by rehearsal because Hairspray was in the 80's which started her career.  Graceful, fun dance!  I think I had a dress a lot like the one she danced in back then.  Wish I were still that size.  The judges said their timing was off when they weren't in hold.  Ricki is losing some weight.  Score - 24.

It's between J. R. and Ricki to win.  

Next week - Broadway tunes.  That should be interesting.  

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Craig Ferguson Comedy Special

The Craig Ferguson concert Tina and I went to at TPAC in Nashville will be on Comedy Central Saturday night.  He was hilarious, so watch it or DVR it and watch it later!  You'll be glad you did! 

Friday, October 14, 2011

Lost Week

I have my annual allergy/sinusitis/bronchitis bout and have been out of it all week.  I slept all yesterday afternoon, evening, most of the night, and this morning with some awake breaks.  I even missed our weekly trivia game at a local Mexican restaurant this week and won't make it to the Southern Festival of Books this weekend.  Whine, whine!!  I did go to my doctor for a z-pak which helps.  Fall is my favorite season, but it doesn't love me in return with its ragweed.  Enough complaining.  I'll write about trivia when I'm awake again. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Oh, Brother Where Art Thou?

I haven't heard much about Elijah Blue Allman, Cher's son from her brief marriage to Gregg Allman.  He's been in bands and played on tour with his dad is about all I know.  I googled and didn't find much except that he doesn't smile much.  There was an article about an art exhibit of his work but pictures only of Cher and Chaz.  Maybe he's private like his dad and doesn't want all the publicity and fame but wants to create.  Who knows?

DWTS Results

Continuing the movie score theme, musical guests were Raphael Saadiq a young guy I don't know with glasses who sang "Soul Man" and Susan Boyle and "Unchained Melody" from her new album.  Julianne Hough and her co-star Kenny Wormald in Footloose danced to songs from the movie including the title song sung by Blake Shelton.  She and Derek danced to "Shake It."  Jullianne got a huge reception from the audience, judges, and other dancers and got emotional.  It's good to see her again. 

The three in jeopardy were Rob, Chynna, and Nancy, so one of them will go home.  It's Chynna. 

Blogging Lull

I haven't been posting or commenting on blogs as much lately and miss y'all.  I'll try to do better! 

Monday, October 10, 2011

DWTS 13 - Week 4

This week's theme - movie scores.  This week's big news - Cher in the audience.  She tweeted to her minions that she would appear if Chaz made it another week.  Don't get me wrong, I love Cher, and other dancetestants have stayed on too long past their dance ability should allow.  Chaz cannot dance well and really should have gone last week.  In the tradition of Master P, Billy Ray Cyrus, and others, he'll probably be on a while longer because of Cher's fan base.  No, it's not all about the dancing even at the end.  The best dancers are nearly always in the finale, but the best dancer doesn't always win.  The judges' scores count half, but the voters count the other half and we know how voting can go.  Well, to be honest, I vote for the ones I like most among the best dancers.  

Now for the competition ... but first about parents in the audience, I always teared up when I saw Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne there for Kelly.  She's adorable and it was all so sweet!  Kelly's and Ozzy's smiles are just alike and they glowed. 

Chynna and Tony began the evening with a tango to the theme from Mission Impossible.  Chynna's footwork seemed awkward and stumbly in places.  I was right.  The judges said she lost the thread but not her composure.  They said what she did, she did well and to relax and have fun.  Score - 21

David and Kym did a paso doble to an Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark theme.  Courtney and Coco are there again cheering him on along with two sisters this week, Patricia and Rosanna.  Kym told him they should dance for themselves and enjoy it.  He swung in on a rope and wielded a whip.  He did pretty well with good moves and a paso doble attitude.  Standing ovation from the audience and Bruno!  Carrie Ann loved it, too, but not Len.  Argument ensued between the judges.  Tom Bergeron does such a good job on this show and can move things along and calm or energize as needed.  Score - 23

Carson and Anna danced a Viennese waltz to The Curse of the Black Pearl - Pirates of the Caribbean.  This should be interesting.  He was concerned that pirates had to be all butch and then said he thought about how they wore tight pants, open shirts, and looked for jewelry and decided he could do it.  They had sword fighting lessons from a really hot guy which pleased all of us.  The waltz parts of the dance were good, but I'm not sure how the judges will like the extras thrown in that did fit with the pirate theme.  We'll see.  It was definitely entertaining!  Carrie Ann said this was his most butch performance but that his technique was lacking.  Len said it was entertaining but terrible.  Bruno said it was Pirates of the Caribbean 5:  Revenge of the Gay Blade!  Score - 20

I usually fast forward the DVR but had to watch the Puss 'n Boots commercial because well Antonio Banderas.  Enough said.  Thank goodness I didn't have to watch that one again about the poor guy married to that bitch who criticized him in that horrible tone of voice for signing them up for free calling with unlimited texting.  I'm glad I don't use AT&T.  I hate that woman and feel sorry for her husband.  

Nancy and Tristan paso doble to the theme from Flash Gordon.  Tristan told Nancy to have the same attitude with this dance that she has on her show.  She did have the attitude and most of the technique and did pretty well.  After Mel B's paso with Maks, it's hard for any of them to measure up to that one.  The judges said she had no expression and there was no excitement to her dance, except for Carrie Ann who said her technique was good.  There really wasn't that fire, passion, and connection with the audience that makes the dance entertaining.  Score - 21

Hope and Maksim are dancing a Western foxtrot to "You Have a Friend in Me" from Toy Story.  Hope and Maks butted heads which is typical for him and his partners.  They have to have that personality to work with him.  It was a light, entertaining dance.  Hope was awkward at times and isn't as smooth as she could be.  Bruno and Carrie Ann praised her, but Len said she needed to work harder and could go all the way if she did.  She's still playing soccer and has to rehearse for this, too!  Score - 24.

It's a grouchy Len night.  Last week he was downright cheerful.

Rob and Cheryl are dancing the paso doble to Superman.  Rob's working hard and said he has no life outside of this competition and wants to do well.  His technique was pretty good but there was no intensity and passion that this dance requires.  He seems like a sweet guy.  The judges said he did well and gave him a 24.

Ricki and Derek danced a tango to Psycho.  Derek had a hard time choreographing their dance to this song and said the tempo made it difficult.  He can do it though, I'm sure.  Ricki got very frustrated and wasn't sure she could do it.  However, it was wonderful - very dramatic and intense and so tango!  Wow!  Standing O from the audience!  The judges agreed.  Might be a first 10 of the season.  Score 29!!  Am I good or what?  Yes!!

Chaz and Lacey danced a paso doble to the theme from Rocky.  Not sure how this will go.  Not good.  Not a paso doble.  This was better than his other dances, and I did get choked up watching Cher.  She didn't get a lot of camera time but was there along with Cher's mother, her sister, and his girlfriend who is there every week.  Score - 21.

J. R. and Karina danced a foxtrot to the Pink Panther theme.  Good job!  Smooth, graceful, entertaining, and connected to the audience.  Carrie Ann didn't like it that well and thought the humor didn't work for her.  Len said he was the best male dancer of the night.  Bruno said he was great.  Odd judging tonight.  Score - 26.

Carson and Anna are at the bottom, but as we know it depends on the voters now.  Based on dancing, the best ones are Ricki and J. R.  Who do you think will go home next?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

DWTS Results

Kristin went home.  Her scores were good and she danced well but doesn't have a large fan base.  This is about all I'm going to say right now. 

Monday, October 3, 2011

DWTS 13 - Week 3

The dancetestants chose songs that reflected a memorable year in their lives.  As you might expect, these songs were highly emotional and brought back all kinds of memories (as songs do for us).  It was touching.

Rob Kardashian chose "Fly Me to the Moon" since it was his father's favorite song, and he danced it as a tribute for the year his father died when he was 15.  He and Cheryl danced the foxtrot.  He's improving.  Len even praised him and said he put the "dash" in Kardashian.  Score was 24!

Chynna Phillips chose "Hold On" to dance the rumba.  Wilson Phillips recorded this song which she wrote during depression and drug/alcohol abuse, and it reminds her of how far she's come.  This was not a sexy rumba, but the judges thought she did really well.  Technically it was very good but is supposed to be smoldering, and she got the first nines (two of them) of the season.  The Wilson sisters were in the audience showing their support.  Score - 26.

Chaz Bono's song was one his dad wrote "Laugh at Me" since this year is his happiest year.  He attempted a rumba but is in that group who have sort of walked through their dances.  Len must be taking happy pills tonight.  Even so, all the judges gave him 6's which equals 18.  Time to go. 

Kristin Cavallari chose "Crazy in Love" for 2005 when she graduated from high school and moved to LA.  She and Mark danced the samba which is supposed to be energetic and sexy.  The judges thought she did a good job and gave her a 24.

Carson Kressley danced a tango to "It's My Life" for the year Queer Eye aired.  He said when the judges said he danced so badly brought back all those years he was pointed out in gym class for not being athletic.  This was good!  Technically he had the footwork and moves!  Bruno, Carrie Ann, and even Len loved it!!  Score - 23.

J. R. Martinez told about when he was injured in the war and chose "If You're Reading This" for all the men and women who didn't make it home.  Their rumba was emotional and did everyone in.  The audience applauded for a very long time, and I cried because of that damned war and the song that says it all.  Whew!  He dances very well, and Karina's choreography was excellent.  Two nines and an eight for 26 points.

Nancy Grace danced to "Moon River" because it was the first lullaby she sang to her twins after their touch-and-go birth.  They danced a lovely but technically erratic waltz.  The twins were very squirmy in their dad's lap which is normal for having to sit that long and watch dancing for any little ones.  Score was 21.

Ricki Lake danced to "Gravity" about her husband and how she felt when she fell in love with him.  This was a sensuous rumba filled with personal meaning and technicality.  The judges were wowed by her dancing and Derek's choreography.  Wow!!  Three 9's!!  27!

Hope Solo danced the cha-cha to "Tonight" which she said gives her energy before games.  Her teammates were there.  Hope's cha-cha was much better than her other dances, but she's not very graceful.  The judges commented on her walk which will work well for the Paso Doble but not so much for the dances so far.  Still, a good job with a score of 24.

David Arquette chose to dance his rumba to "Oo Oo Child" for his daughter.  It does sound as if his marriage might be over which I was hoping they could salvage since they seem to care about each other.  I know from experience that isn't enough sometimes.  Courtney and his sister Patricia cheered him along with Coco and nieces.  He's still awkward but improving.  Best dance he's done.  David seems so sweet and tries so hard.  Score is 24!

Based on dancing, Chaz should go home tomorrow night.  He has that sweet smile and a great attitude, but I don't want to watch him on there any more.  It's painful to watch him try to dance, and that outfit was horribly unattractive. 

I'm not sure in which order they'll be eliminated but think J.R. or Ricki could possibly win this.  What do you think? 

My Birthday - Cute & Crabby!

I can see 70 from my window ... in TWO YEARS!!!  Yikes!  How did this happen so fast?!!?!

Friday, September 30, 2011


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Pie Chart ... Pie!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


DWTS Results

Spoiler alert!  

Arrivederci, Elisabetta!  Yes!  Ciao and thank goodness!

Monday, September 26, 2011

DWTS 13 - Week 2

I have to say right at the beginning that I just love Carson Kressley and have ever since Queer Eye for the Straight Guy was on, so I'm pulling for him to stick around as long as possible.  I also like his professional teacher/partner Anna Trebunskaya.

The dances tonight are the Quick Step and the Jive.  Both are fast and difficult to do well.  I got the team names from the DWTS website. 

Hope and Maks are first and dance the jive.  It was fun and had a soccer theme.  The judges said she needed to spend more time working on her dancing.  Hope said soccer and dance kicks are two entirely different things.  Her body is amazing.  I said last week that she has 0% body fat with extremely toned muscles!  What she wore this week was revealing and showed her abs and back, so no one could help notice.  Score for Team MakSolo was 19.  Maks might be solo before we're ready for it.  No!! 

Kristin and Mark's quick step had a Marilyn Monroe vibe as they danced to "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend."  Team KristinBalls was lively and entertaining with praise from the judges except for Len who still gave them a "well done."  Their score was 22

David and Kym did a sparkly gold jive that was stronger on enthusiasm than technique.  Courtney Cox and their daughter CoCo were at the table with David's sister Rosanna and someone I didn't recognize.  I hope he gets to stay a while longer because he is sweet and entertaining.  Score for Team GoodTimes was 18.

Elisabetta and Val had issues during rehearsal.  Val sounds just like Maks when he's teaching her the dances.  I keep trying to figure out what George Clooney saw in her for two years other than her looks.  She's definitely high-maintenance and doesn't dance that well which leads to some of my theories about dancing and sex.  I'll just say she's a dead dance.  Not too much longer for DWTS Team Valisabetta's score was surprisingly 21.

Rob and Cheryl danced a surfer jive.  Rob smiles enthusiastically and does pretty well.  His mother and frozen-faced from botox and surgery step-father Bruce Jenner cheered him on.  Carrie Ann said it's official that he dances better than Kim.  Remember when she was on there for a couple of weeks?  Me either.  Score for Team CherBert is also 21.

Carson and Anna did the quick step.  Last week they were so popular and entertaining that they did the encore dance!  This quick step was colorful with bright crayon hues in their costumes.  I believe we're going to hear "better on enthusiasm than skill" again.  This was a bit awkward for the quick step which is supposed to be lively and controlled.  Len said the worst dancers this season are the most entertaining.  Team CarsonAnna had scores that reflected his lack of technique and totaled 18.  That's about what I thought.

Ricki and Derek danced the jive with a 20's theme.  Ricki had trouble with endurance and stamina and asked how Kirstie Alley managed to do it.  Team DRickilous did a lot of bump and grind with enthusiasm and energy.  Bruno said Ricki's kicks and flicks were the only ones done right all evening and Carrie Ann said best jive of the night.  Ricki said she's lost weight and 12 inches so far.  Their score was 23

Chaz and Lacey danced the quick step.  Chaz said he was afraid his knees would blow or that he'd literally pass out.  Chaz lumbered through the pain with determination and charm.  Bruno said it was like watching a little Ewok dance with Princess Leia which was cute and lovely but that the quick step had to be lively and this was too slow.  Team Schwaz shouldn't be on too much longer but might because of the fan base he and Cher have.  Score was 17

Chynna and Tony danced a jive. She did well but seems sort of restrained in a way.  The judges said it was "polite" and not enthusiastic enough.  Team ChynnaDove had a score of 21

Nancy and Tristan danced a quick step.  She shut down during rehearsal and quit speaking for a while.  They talked it out and got past it.  Her technique was awkward but had good footwork.  Len said this dance followed the rules and was a proper quick step.  She had a Janet Jackson type of wardrobe malfunction, but Tom Bergeron stepped in front of her and the camera panned away while she adjusted herself.  He said that would be fine on the European version.  Team MacGrace had a score of 21.  Len gave them an 8! 

J. R. and Karina did a lively and entertaining jive that was really good.  J.R.'s foot work was great, his stage presence engaging, and his musicality right on!  The judges praised them.  Carrie Ann, the lift police, had to point that out, and Len said it was a Lindy Hop instead of a jive.  Standing O from the audience!  Score for Team Martinoff was 22

Now let the voting begin!  It's hard to tell this early who will stay and who won't.  Voters as we know are a fickle lot. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

Heed Bob Barker's Advice

Steve Currie's Photos
Please spay or neuter your pets! This is a tragic example of an in-bread cat.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

DWTS Results

First to go - Ron Artest aka Metta World Peace  (whatever)

I wasn't sure that's how it would happen since ballplayers usually stick around a little while or get first or second place.  This is fine with me.  

Monday, September 19, 2011

DWTS Season 13 Week 1

I've watched every episode of every season, and here I am again!  Not sure if I'll recap DWTS but will write about it every week.  New tri-level ballroom.  Brooke Burke got married and hyphenated.  This is the first week, so it will take a while for them to really dance.  The dwarf stars are nervous. Here goes ...

Ron Artest dances with a new pro this season Peta Murgatroyd who is from Australia (so is Kym Johnson).  Their cha-cha was lively and fun but sort of awkward.  The huge height difference was OK during this dance but could be a problem later on.  Ron Artest is a basketball player whose hair is a work of "art" in the way Dennis Rodman's was at times.  It's blonde with writing on the sides.  Not really a good look. 

Scores:  5 + 4 + 5 = 14

Rob Kardashian and Cheryl Burke had the Viennese Waltz for their first dance.  Awkward.  Lumbering.  Yet arrogant.  If anyone can get him to improve, it's Cheryl.  The judges thought he might make it a few more weeks if he loosens up and dances to the music.

Scores:  6 + 5 + 5 = 16

 Kristin Cavallari is or was the bad girl on The Hills, which I've never seen and have no idea who she is.  She said she was engaged but it was broken and that she hopes this will help get her mind off of it.  OK.  Her partner Mark Ballas told her she has natural dance talent.  They are doing the cha-cha pretty well.  Very good beginning!  Bruno was smarmy and Len was nice to the pretty blonde.

Scores:  7 + 6 + 6 = 19

Chynna Phillips and Tony Dovalani danced a Viennese Waltz, and she was graceful and lovely.  I mentioned before that I keep forgetting that she's married to Billy Baldwin.  It's one of those things I block.  The judges praised her.  Hope she gets votes and sticks around.  Tony finally got a good partner for a change!  He was so thrilled with what the judges said and the scores that what I suspected might be true that he has PTSD from having to be around Kate Gosselin season before last. 

Scores:   8 + 7  + 7 +  = 22

Nancy Grace is paired with Tristan MacManus (new this season but has been in the dance troupe - and quite sexy I might add - Irish accent and all).  They danced the cha-cha.  Well, mostly.  She walked through parts of it.  She did seem to have fun but was busy concentrating on the moves.  I can understand that.  First week.  Then the judges argued.

Scores:   5 + 5 + 6 +  = 16

David Arquette has Kym Johnson for his partner, and they danced the Viennese Waltz.  Kym is a taskmaster (taskmistress?) and David is sweet, funny, and wants to do well.  He was a little stiff but did well overall.  I hope he and Courtney get back together.  She and their daughter were in the audience cheering him on, which made me a little teary.  The judges said he has potential and did well but didn't get out of his head. 

Score:  6 + 6 + 6+ = 18

Elisabetta Canalis has Maksim's younger brother Val Chmerkovskiy for her partner.  Yes, there was a photo of her with George Clooney since that's her claim to fame in the US.  In Italy she's a model.  She and Val had a communication problem since she doesn't speak English fluently, and he speaks it well but is Ukrainian.  That was interesting.  The judges said she danced pretty well when she was with Val but not on her own.  From what they said, she might not be on too long.  Models don't often last more than a few weeks if that long.

Score:  5 + 5 + 5 +  = 15

Hope Solo dances with Maksim Chmerkovskiy.  It's going to be another battle of wits between them!  Maks said the Viennese Waltz doesn't suit her at all, but she managed it pretty well and was graceful for someone who is all muscle.  I don't think she has any body fat at all.  Being the athlete she is, her discipline, focus, and competitive spirit will will get her there.  She might win it.

Score:   7 + 7 + 7 +  = 21

Carson Kressley and Anna Trebunskaya should be a good team.  I just love him, and she's fun and a good teacher. Cha-cha for them which was lots of fun which it would have to be.  He worked it and gave a performance!  The audience loved it!  Carson pranced.  The judges loved the performance and sparkle!  I knew he'd be fun and entertaining!

Score:   6 + 5 + 6 +  = 17

J. R. Martinez dances with Karina Smirnoff. He survived a land mine and sustained burns and 33 surgeries.  He's a veteran and an actor.  They danced the Viennese Waltz, and he was graceful and focused but seemed relaxed and confident.  After all he endured, how would this make him nervous?  He has a wonderful attitude and great smile.  The judges praised his dancing. 

Score:   8 + 7 + 7 +  = 22

Ricki Lake has Derek Hough for a partner.  He and Mark Ballas trained together and are both fearless competitors. They danced the Viennese Waltz.  Ricki said Kristie Alley inspired her to go on DWTS and that she wants to lose weight and win a mirror ball.  Smooth, graceful performance. 

Score:   7 + 6 + 7 +  = 20

Chaz Bono is dancing with Lacey Schwimmer. I knew they'd have Chaz last since that's what they do about dancetestants who are controversial and/or awaited.  Chaz did OK on the cha-cha with good footwork and moves.  He looked like he was having fun.  The judges were supportive and praised their dance. 

Score:   6 + 5 + 6 = 17

Predictions?  Probably the first to go will be Elisabetta, Nancy, and Rob.  Best so far are Hope, Chynna, J. R., and Ricki.  It's really hard to tell because so much of the voting has to do with their fan base and popularity.  The best dancers make it to the finals but don't always win.

Now on to Castle!!