Archive for November, 2009

The nation’s latest self-created ‘celebrities,’ Michaele and Tareq Salahi, make their TODAY SHOW debut this week after allegedly crashing a White House state dinner.  How did they pull it off?  Simple; they looked the part.

Michaele presented herself like the ‘former Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader’ she claimed to be.  Reportedly, after their limo was turned back from the White House gates, Michaele’s husband had his forehead powdered by his accompanying make-up man.  These two clearly had their priorities straight: in politics, as in all things American these days, appearance is all.

How else to explain the scarily high rise of Sarah Palin?  NEWSWEEK was criticized for its cover of trim Palin in jogging shorts.  Luckily for jogger Bill Clinton, no male politician would be subjected to a ‘leg shot.’  But would Palin still be rating any magazine cover if she weren’t so darn photogenic?  And what’s with that American flag seemingly draped over a barstool at her side?

Speaking of ‘leg shots,’ check out wronged political wife Jenny Sanford, posing for Vogue while her faithless husband flounders. Petite, pretty and rabidly conservative, Jenny Sanford is allegedly contemplating her own political run.

Of course, Barack Obama is easy on the eyes too– luckily he, like our first celebrity-President JFK, has brainpower to back up his brilliant smile.  But if we keep picking political stars by party-gate-crasher standards, are we heading for our own crash?  (And BTW, Who is your favorite political pin-up?)

photo credits: Guardian.com, Newsweek & Vogue

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Susan Lilley is a poet and a Florida native.  She is author of the chapbook Night Windows (Yellow Jacket Press) and her work can be found in Poet Lore, The Florida Review, Passager, and The Southern Review.

Undying Vampire Love By Susan Lilley

I won’t be shelling out my entertainment dollars for New Moon, the latest in the Twilight films based on novels that females around the country are sucking down like Bloody Marys on New Year’s Day.

First of all, I’m terrified I might love it. I already indulge in enough ridiculous age-inappropriate obsessions, like Mad Libs, Pee-wee’s Playhouse reruns, and rock bands for which I may well be the oldest fan. As much as I love the sound of Vampire Weekend, I am holding out for something even better, the return of Dark Shadows.

In my youth, I secretly loved vampire Barnabas Collins, the menacing centrifuge of the gloriously gothic late-60s TV soap that aired every day after school. I never missed an episode.

My best friend, Kate, and I would dash to my house in her four-on-the-floor black Chevy, with Cat Stevens or Sly and the Family Stone blaring on the eight-track. As the maudlin strains of the ending-credits theme of The Guiding Light played, we hurriedly prepared our refreshments: a gallon of Tab and a jumbo bag of taco-flavored Doritos, which our boyfriends said turned our breath to battery acid. We didn’t care – we were on our way to Collinwood, the moody estate where Barnabas lurked as a tormented, lonely, forever-old but ageless, blood-sucking anti-hero.


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jeremyphotoJeremy Lakaszcyck is a candidate for an MFA in fiction at the University of Massachusetts in Boston where he teaches creative writing. He placed third in the 2009 Playboy College Fiction Contest for his story, “Casual Encounters.” He’s also co-created and worked as prose editor for Consequence, a journal focused on the culture of war in the 21st century.


It’s no longer news that Fox News is the official voice of the GOP. Even Fox doesn’t deny it. In a recent Huffington Post article it’s noted that Fox News CEO Roger Ailes describes his station’s confrontation with the Obama administration as “the Alamo,” and that Fox News senior vice president Bill Shine says Fox is “the voice of opposition.”images
It’s not so far-fetched to believe, then, that Fox News engenders the same views as the GOP. One might even conclude that just like the GOP, Fox News stands for “traditional values.” A phrase which, let’s be honest here, means God crazy. It’s ludicrous to think there is some kind of absolute moral barometer by which everyone should abide. But, for argument’s sake, let’s see what we can learn about “Traditional Values” while watching Fox News.
On the website for The Coalition for Traditional Values, in the section titled “Traditional Values Defined,” it states “Traditional Values are based upon Biblical Foundations…” Knowing this, I feel led to ask the question: is the blondification of news anchors/reporters a commandment in the Bible? According to Fox News, yes.

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First the hoax, then the book, then the mini-series MARK sent in this breaking news :

According to CNN.com, the Colorado parents in “balloon boy” case will plead guilty to offenses for creating a hoax that their son had flown away in a large balloon.

JERMEY & CAITLIN sent me a link that links nicely with this news, analyzing the psychological problems created in (surprise surprise) Reality TV-style celebrities: those who rocket into seeming fame and recognition based on ‘thin air,’ then plummet to the ground when they realize– with a thud– they aren’t important or talented in any ‘real’ way.  ‘Reality’ meets Reality.

Their article quotes one Cooper Lawrence, author of “The Cult of Celebrity: What Our Fascination with the Stars Reveals about Us.” (Interstingly, Lawrence is facing her own mini-scandal over remarks made on FOX). Here on the Blog my husband was ahead of the game in dubbing the new ADD:


Balloon Boy’s parents admit ‘We’re Guilty.’  And what about us, their unwitting and sometimes unwilling audience?  Aren’t we all ‘enabling’ this sick syndrome of insta-fame to insta-disgrace to inevitable crash?  Anyone see a way out?

(And meanwhile, of course, just to keep merrily enabling away: be sure to cast your VOTE for DISGRACED CELEBRITY OF THE FALL, 2009– we are accepting votes and nominations ALL NOVEMBER; just post a vote with ANY COMMENT here on the blog, in this ongoing neverending Race for Disgrace…)

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IMG_0201Oh, how the mighty have fallen this fall, 2009.  Kanye West, Joe (You Lie) Wilson, Roman Polanski, Balloon Boy’s Dad, David Letterman, Levi Johnston, Steven Phillips: these are a few of the disgraced celeb.s who have ‘graced’ this fall’s Posts.

But surely there are others I am mentally blocking.  Help me out here.  Winter is approaching and with it the all-important Disgraced Celebrity of 2009.  Before we ponder who will face down Sarah Palin in our Celebrity Death Match, we must decide:

Who deserves the ‘coveted crown’ of Disgraced Celebrity for the disgrace-laden fall of 2009?

As you may recall, our Blog Readers in their collective wisdom already chose Sarah Palin as ‘Disgraced Celebrity of the Summer, 2009’.  But don’t forget her fellow nominees, the still imminently well-qualified Gov. (IS he still Gov.?) Mark Sanford, Ryan O’Neal, former VP Dick Cheney… The List goes on.  Now is your chance to throw into the ring the celebrated individual you feel ‘owns’ the Fall, 2009 field of Disgrace.  November is the month to vote; be a good citizen of our Celebrity Nation.  Post your nomination/vote/rant today!

PS: Thanks to both Libby and Jeremy for sending in this link on Celebrity Stalkers

PPS: Thanks to Caitlin for her TOP TEN LIST of Disgraced Celeb.s (see Comments)– and YES, in answer to an emailed question, feel free to send in as many nominees as you like throughout November!  Acts of exceptional disgrace that occur later can compete in Winter; the Disgraced Celeb. competition is ongoing…

PPPS: Thanks to Bill among others alerting me to LEVI & JON, TOGETHER AT LAST– a major historic/hysteric moment. L & J win a Dual Disgrace vote.

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