Tag Archives: President Barack Obama

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Jimmy Fallon is hosting this year’s Emmy Awards?  Really?

Has Neil Patrick Harris died?  Is Hugh Jackman on walkabout in Australia?  Have Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin had a falling out?

I mean, Jimmy’s a great guy, and he’s done some funny pieces for his late night show (the “Lost” parody and “Robert is Bothered” to name a few).  But hosting the Emmys?  Have you seen his opening monologues?  The dude is a joke reader, not a comedian.

Last year we had the multi-talented, host extraordinaire Neil Patrick Harris.  This year, we get the stripped-down, laughs at his own jokes, ain’t-ready-for-this-by-no-stretch-of-the-imagination Jimmy Fallon.

The Leno effect strikes again.

That’s right — the Leno effect.  The play-it-safe, middle-of-the-road, celebration of mediocrity-over-humor that Jay Leno has perpetuated in this country.  The ‘less offensive is more desirable than creative’ choice.

We saw how well that worked out at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, now, didn’t we?  (I’ll shut up.)

Thank goodness the Golden Globes had the balls to book Ricky Gervais as its host for the second year in a row.  Of course, they are the Hollywood Foreign Press.  Perhaps they are immune…or have a vaccine.

Lucky aliens.

Funny or die

Congratulations, Team CoCo!

You were the clear winner at the White House Coorespondents’ Dinner last night.  (And Conan wasn’t even invited.)

Yep, even though Jay Leno had the honor of hosting the prestigious annual D.C. event, he proved — once again — that while he may be the safe choice, he certainly isn’t the funny one.

In fact, the critics agree that President Barack Obama had much better timing and material.

Adam Sorensen, reporting on the event for Time, said Leno “started at top speed, rushed his lines, seemed too tied to his notes (no Tonight Show teleprompter) and made little effort to connect with the crowd in any real sense.”  He even called his jokes “pedestrian.”

Ouch.

That’s especially tough criticism for a veteran stand-up comedian.  It’s not like Leno doesn’t have practice.  Seventeen years at “The Tonight Show.”  Five nights a week.

But the truth is, Leno isn’t known for being funny; he’s known for being mediocre.  And last night, he wasn’t facing a half-asleep, middle-American audience.  Some of the smartest people in the country were in that room…and they didn’t laugh at his usual swill.

That’s one death on stage I would have liked to see in person.

Tres chic

I’m obsessed with gadgets this week…or, more accurately, how we can’t seem to live without them.

And since President Obama signed the healthcare reform bill this week — Yes, we can — it seems only fitting that we should take our cellphones with us into the hospital in new, improved designer gowns.

It’s all the rage in England.

Ben de Lisi has designed a new hospital gown that not only eliminates the embarrassing butt-exposing back opening, but also includes a pashmina blanket accessory and — wait for it — a pouch for your phone or mobile device.

A tweet a day keeps the doctor away…or something like that.

The new gown also comes with optional cropped pants, a panel insert for larger patients, and the choice of V-neck or scoop.  This man has thought of everything!

I’m just wondering where you put the wireless router…

Right again

Once again, President Obama and I agree.

We both picked Murray State to upset Vanderbilt in the first round of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament yesterday.

Great minds…

And since there is a very good chance that I will devote a portion of this blog to my alma mater and East Region #1 seed University of Kentucky Wildcats — who also won their first-round game yesterday — I wanted to give Murray State a little love today.

I grew up, as many of you know, in Fancy Farm, Kentucky, which is a mere 45-minute drive from the Murray State campus.  During high school, I spent a lot of time there, attending regional meetings for academic clubs and visiting my sister Lou Ann, who is a proud Murray State alum.  (My brother Kent also received his degree from Murray a few years later.)

The Murray State Racers were no slackers coming into the tourney; they boast a 31-4 record this year.  Many credit Racer Isacc Miles, who formerly played for Creighton, as the reason behind Murray’s appearance on the national stage.

Whatever the impetus, Butler had better be ready on Saturday ’cause the Murray State Racers are coming!

And they’ll have the entire state of Kentucky behind them.

Not for sale

Turns out, President Obama has a lot more than the election in Massachusetts to be worried about.

Have you heard how the White House is losing its property value?

It’s true. It’s dropping like a lead balloon.

Zillow, the online real estate database, gave the president’s residence an estimated value of $292,386,000 as of January 18th. That’s down $15.6 million since Obama first took office last year. And it had already lost $23.8 million the last year President George W. Bush was in office.

I have to wonder how Zillow came up with these estimated values. In a standard appraisal, the appraiser looks at homes of comparable value. Where do you find homes that compare with a 55,000 square-foot building that sits on 18 acres, and has 132 rooms including 16 family-guest rooms, an underground bunker, three kitchens, three elevators, and 28 fireplaces?

And does the popularity of the president sitting in office affect the property value? It shouldn’t — just as my likeability as a person shouldn’t affect my own home’s value — but does it, in the case of the President of the United States?

Regardless, he’ll never to worry about resale.

Lucky stiff.

Social conscious

Attention doubters and disparagers:  social media has proven it is far more than just a great way to waste time.

It can, for instance, raise $2 million dollars for earthquake relief in Haiti in 24 hours.

Thanks to thousands of status updates on facebook and Twitter — and I’m sure a mention by President Obama didn’t hurt, either — mGive was able to collect the monies via text message in a campaign organized by the State Department and the Red Cross.

Anyone with a cell phone is able to text the word “HAITI” to 90999 and $10 is donated to the Red Cross. The donation appears on your monthly cellphone bill.

I’m sure concerts will be planned, and organizations and celebrities will step forward with large donations to help in the cause. But this grassroots effort was made possible — and fast and simple — by the technologies that we sometimes love to hate.

So the next time you are in the movie theatre and some yo-yo starts texting in the dark…

Or you realize you spent the entire morning playing on facebook or Twitter instead of doing real work….

Remember Haiti.

All due respect

Today is Veterans’ Day.

As the proud sister of a retired Army Lt. Colonel and veteran of the first Persian Gulf War, and the daughter of a veteran of the Korean War, I want to send a personal note of thanks to all service men and women, past and present, for their dedication and service to our country.

When I watched the clip of President Obama’s speech at the memorial service at Fort Hood, Texas yesterday, I was saddened by the tragic, senseless loss, but at the same time, uplifted by the words of comfort that our commander in chief so eloquently offered.

“For those families who have lost a loved one, no words can fill the void that’s been left.  We knew these men and women as soldiers and caregivers.  You knew them as mothers and fathers; sons and daughters; sisters and brothers.

But here is what you must also know:  Your loved ones endure through the life of our nation.  Their memory will be honored in the places they lived and by the people they touched.  Their life’s work is our security, and the freedom that we all too often take for granted.  Every evening that the sun sets on a tranquil town; every dawn that a flag is unfurled; every moment that an American enjoys life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness — that is their legacy.”

What a beautiful tribute to the fallen.  And, I believe, his words come from a place of deepest respect.  President Obama will not put our service men and women at risk without just cause.

What a difference a year makes.


Foot-in-mouth disease

The whole world has been in an uproar lately about the H1N1 virus.  It’s a legitimate worry.  We need to be aware and prepared and safe.

But there is another virus that has already infected millions of people.  And thanks to the wide variety of media available today, when this virus erupts, we can witness it instantaneously.

The dread disease?  A horrendous, offensive, egregious lack of manners.

Call me old-fashioned — and I’m not — but lately it seems like people — men and women of all ages —  are treating each other like crap…and we get to see it immediately, courtesy of the closest media outlet.

Exhibit A:  South Carolina Representative Joe Wilson. His now infamous “You lie!” shoutout during President Barack Obama’s address to a joint session of Congress was an unheard of breach of decorum.  He quickly apologized, but his slip became the evening’s news story, not healthcare.

Exhibit B: Serena Williams. She not only verbally abused a teeny-tiny lines woman at the US Open, she also repeatedly shoved her tennis racket in the official’s face and threw the F-bomb around 5+ times in front of an international audience.  She managed to be threatening, tasteless and classless — all at the same time — and only issued an apology after her publicist reminded her that her book was ” in stores now.”

Exhibit C: Kayne West. Less than 24 hours after Serena’s meltdown, West walked on the VMA Awards Show stage and took the microphone away from Taylor Swift — who was accepting an award for her music video  — to tell her that Beyonce’s video was “better.”   To the audience’s credit, he got boo’ed…big time.  And Beyonce — ever classy — brought Swift back up on stage later in the evening for a second chance to speak.

What up, world?  Have we all forgotten the basic rules of civility?  I hate to be old school here — ’cause I’m not — but treating people with common courtesy and respect is still expected, even in a world where we interact with each other more and more via email, instant messenger, facebook, tweets, and pings.

Thank you for reading.  Have a great day.

(See?  That wasn’t so hard.)