Thursday, August 07, 2008

Paris Hilton for President.

If you came here looking for naked pictures of Paris Hilton, you’ve got the wrong website.

Posted by SPN on 08/07 at 09:53 AM
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Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Someone to be proud of.

I love this girl.

Posted by SPN on 08/05 at 01:53 PM
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Sunday, June 08, 2008

Name the series that this quote comes from.

If you don’t get it, check the read more link to see plenty of more great quotes from this groundbreaking series.  I took the whole thing from Wikipedia.

Huey:: Mr. Jones, it’s Huey. You ready?
James Earl Jones::Young man, I told you last time this isn’t funny. You’re going to get us both in trouble.
Huey:: Last time, I promise. Hold on. [Opens a three-way call]
George W. Bush:: [Answers the phone] This is Bush.
Huey:: Mr. President, please hold for Darth Vader.
James Earl Jones:: [In full Vader voice] President Bush, this is Darth Vader… I wanted to thank you for helping spread Evil throughout the galaxy!
George W. Bush:: Uh… Thank you, Lord Vader! 

The Boondocks is a daily comic strip written and originally drawn by Aaron McGruder. Created by McGruder in 1997 for The Diamondback, the student newspaper at the University of Maryland, College Park, the comic strip was picked up by the Universal Press Syndicate in 1999 and made its national debut on April 19 of that year.

Huey: Riley, we’re not in Chicago anymore… These people are well-off… comfortable. These are not the hard streets of the South Side. Do you understand what I’m trying to say?
Riley: I think so. I’m the hardest, baddest thing for miles, and I can run amok here without fear.
Huey: No. Let me try this again…

Huey: Ok Jazmine, if you’re not Black, then what are you, Hmmm?
Jazmine: Well, let’s see… My mother is one-quarter Irish, one-quarter Swedish, and one-half German. And my grandmother on my father’s side is part Cherokee, and my grandfather is mostly French, I think, because he’s originally from Louisiana, and his father was from Haiti, I believe, which makes me…
Huey: Which makes you as black as Richard Roundtree in Shaft in Africa.
Jazmine: IT DOES NOT!! And who is Richard Roundtree?”

Sarah: Honey, we bought this house on the corner of Gurgling Brook and Blushing Dove, right?
Tom: Of course, why?
Sarah: Because now it’s on the corner of Wu-Tang Drive and Buckshot Avenue.
Tom: Huey or Riley?
Sarah: Riley. Will you talk to him, or should I fill out a change-of-address form?

Huey: Still practicing your “Thug Mug”?
Riley: Hey, “Keepin’ it Real” is hard work when you’re cursed with cuteness…

Huey: I’m sick of women singing about broke men, sick of men singing about loose women, sick of award shows, sick of name-brand clothes… From this moment on, I stand as the antithesis of Black popular culture!! I am the Anti-Cool! I hereby declare myself… A NERD!
Riley: Word?! You? A Nerd?! Speaking of shockers, I just found out that Wesley Snipes is Black! Really! So is Isaac Hayes! And Ray Charles still can’t see!! Can you believe it? Oh yeah, and I hear Bill Clinton really loves the ladies.

[Riley is writing a letter to Santa.]
Riley: While I am aware the Playstation 2 is a bit pricey, your records should indicate that I have, in fact, been remarkably good this year. [pauses] Please note that that the number of kids I smacked in the face just for living is down 25% from last year.

Hello and a hearty salute to Bob Johnson and BET, who recently proclaimed that BET does more to serve the Black community each and every day than the creator of this feature - one “playa hating” Aaron McGruder - has done his entire life. In order to follow the fine example set by Mr. Johnson, we present to you, the reader, in the spirit of Black uplift -
a black woman’s gyrating rear end.
[shows a drawing of a woman’s ass]

Huey: I don’t get it. What’s the significance of the name change? What’s “P.Diddy” supposed to mean?
Ceasar: Well… what can it rhyme with? “P.Diddy"… Let’s see… Witty… Kitty… City… Biddy… Doesn’t seem clear.
Huey: What about sh-
Ceasar: Stop that.

TV News: Senator Trent Lott reiterated the critical need for genetically enhanced super-commandos with multiple heads and appendages, saying “I’m confident the president will do right by America’s armed forces.” Meanwhile, the Japanese government announced that it was already well on its way to creating a three-headed soldier with wings and cybernetically implanted machine guns. They are promising to pour millions into further human cloning projects with the hope of “Making real life more like our really, really cool cartoons.”

Ceasar: I can’t believe they still have Ms Cleo on the run. I hope she’s ok.
[The phone rings.]
Huey: I guess I gotta go get that… [picks up the phone] Hello? This is he… Ok, good… Good… Excellent… Well, thanks for calling.... Take care. [hangs up]
Huey: She’s fine, and she says thanks for asking.
Ceasar: Cool.

[Huey is debating whether or not to see Attack of the Clones
Huey: See, on the one hand, I’m still mad at that whole Jar Jar Binks/Sambo bit in Episode I. On the other hand, we have Sam “Foot to Rear End” Jackson choppin’ heads with a purple lightsaber. I just don’t know what to do…

Huey: “And the winner of the “Black Artist Most Likely to Commit a sexual offense involving a twelve-year-old” award is…
Huey: Y’know, it’s bad enough we even have to have this award, but… It’s a tie!

New Slang Alert: Brokeback (adj) - Used to describe anything of questionable masculinity. Believed to have originated from 2005 motion picture: Brokeback Mountain Here’s how to use it in daily conversation:
Granddad: It’s not a purse! It’s a man-bag! It’s very manly!
Riley: I don’t know, Granddad… looks kinda Brokeback to me…

Huey: Give me news of hope, Ceasar. Tell me of the leaders who dare to stand against the grave dangers faced by this world. I crave inspiration.
Ceasar: Says here Al Sharpton is protesting a cartoon for using the N-word.”
Huey: I’m going back to bed.

[Huey is leading Thanksgiving grace.]
Huey: Ahem. In this time of war against Osama bin Laden and the oppressive Taliban regime, we are thankful that OUR leader isn’t the spoiled son of a powerful politician from a wealthy oil family who is supported by religious fundamentalists, operates through clandestine organizations, has no respect for the democratic electoral process, bombs innocents, and uses war to deny people their civil liberties. Amen.

Robert: This is the last time you say grace, boy.

Huey:: They always say I’m against the troops. I’m completely for the troops. Why, just last week I sent the president a 50 page “support our troops” resolution giving U.S. Soldiers or their families perpetual revenues from Iraqi Oil.
Caeser:: I’m going to miss you when they pass “Patriot Act 2”

Huey calls the FBI’s terrorism tip line ...
Huey:: I’m very serious. I know of several Americans who helped train and finance Osama bin Laden.
Speaker:: And how did you come by this information?
Huey:: A little investigating. It wasn’t that hard, actually.
Speaker:: Okay, give me some names.
Huey:: All right, let’s see ... the first one is Reagan. That’ R-E-A-G ... Hello? Hello?

TV News:: ..And today in sports, a black man somewhere ran with a ball and jumped with a ball and threw a ball and people got really excited as if they hadn’t seen it a million times before… ...Next, we’ll pretend like we can predict the weather…
Huey:: I definitely don’t hear the same news as other people.

Aaron Brown(on TV):: Welcome Back to CNN’s continuing coverage of the war in Iraq. I’m Aaron Brown. I have been so profusely moved by… everything that has happened since the war started. It’s all so… moving… and I care… So much. If you’ll excuse me, I… I just need a minute… [a beat] You do believe I care, don’t you?
Huey:: OH SHUT THE badword UP, AARON!!!

[Huey is writing a review of The Matrix Reloaded]

It’s important to note that not all moviegoers have been kind to the Matrix sequel. Many have complained that the movie is confusing, and I would have to agree. With so many black people in the movie, it was impossible to predict who would die first.

Ceasar:: You know, people say the best way to make good things happen is to put positive thoughts out into the universe.
Huey:: [thinking] Queen Latifa versus Ann Coulter in a steel cage deathmatch… Queen Latifah verses Ann Coulter in a steel cage deathmatch…

Huey:: Mr. Jones, it’s Huey. You ready?
James Earl Jones::Young man, I told you last time this isn’t funny. You’re going to get us both in trouble.
Huey:: Last time, I promise. Hold on. [Opens a three-way call]
George W. Bush:: [Answers the phone] This is Bush.
Huey:: Mr. President, please hold for Darth Vader.
James Earl Jones:: [In full Vader voice] President Bush, this is Darth Vader… I wanted to thank you for helping spread Evil throughout the galaxy!
George W. Bush:: Uh… Thank you, Lord Vader!

Caesar: Hey man, are you ok?
Huey: A friend of mine back home just died...I never got to say goodbye, you know? I keep wishing he’ll come back as a blue ghost, like Obi-Wan Kenobi. There’s so much I want to say to him. [sigh] Why can’t life be like Star Wars?
Caesar: Well, then Jar-Jar Binks would be real, and there’d be a bunch of Ewoks running around everywhere - nobody wants that.
Huey: A small price to pay if the people you love could come back as blue ghosts.

Tom: Huey, why did you tell Jazmine that Santa Claus is on Death Row in Hungary?
Huey: For the same reason you told her that Santa flies around the world passing out gifts with the help of magical reindeer. I guess we both really enjoy lying to small children.

Huey: See, I told you.
Caesar: I can’t believe it.
Huey: I’ve known some self-hating black people before, but this takes the cake.
Caesar: Oooh, we’re next… Merry Cristmas!
Uncle Ruckus: I hope you chimpanzees don’t have a chimney. 

Posted by SPN on 06/08 at 01:38 PM
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Monday, December 31, 2007

Bush’s last day

Posted by SPN on 12/31 at 03:28 PM
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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Nike suspends release of Vick signature shoe

This is good news…

ATLANTA (July 19, 2007)—Michael Vick’s legal troubles prompted Nike to suspend the release of its latest product line named after the Atlanta Falcons quarterback.

Nike has told retailers it will not release a fifth signature shoe, the Air Zoom Vick V, this summer. Nike spokesman Dean Stoyer said the four shoe products and three shirts that currently bear Vick’s name will remain in stores.

Vick will be arraigned next week in a Richmond, Va., federal courtroom on charges of sponsoring a gruesome dogfighting operation.

Stoyer said Nike still has a standing contract with Vick but declined to speculate on his future with the company.

A statement released by Nike Inc. said the company “is concerned by the serious and highly disturbing allegations made against Michael Vick, and we consider any cruelty to animals inhumane and abhorrent. We do believe that Michael Vick should be afforded the same due process as any citizen; therefore, we have not terminated our relationship.

Stoyer, who declined to discuss terms of Vick’s contract, indicated the company has no commercials or documentaries planned with the three-time NFL Pro Bowl selection.

In years past, Nike has run footage and interviews with Vick on its Web site, but none of the video promotions are currently posted.

“Some of that was shown on a limited run based on rights and usage,” Stoyer said. “There’s nothing new planned.”

Vick signed his current contract with Nike in 2001, the same year Atlanta chose him as the NFL’s No. 1 overall draft pick. After leading the Falcons to the 2002 and ‘04 playoffs, Vick last year became the first quarterback in league history to rush for 1,000 yards in a single season.

Posted by rosevine69 on 07/19 at 05:37 PM
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Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Falcons’ Vick Indicted In Dogfighting Probe

This is just sad.....All the money this guy makes and this is best “investment” he could come up with?
I will never understand what drives people to be this cruel.
I can only hope that when it’s Michael Vick and his buddies at “bad news kennels” time to depart this earth, that they die as horrible a death as those dogs, and the sooner the better as far as I am concerned.
Responsible pit bull owners in places like Denver are having to give up thier beloved pets because of scum like this....
Just one more reason I like animals better than MOST people...........

(CBS News) RICHMOND, Va. Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick was indicted Tuesday by a federal grand jury on charges related to illegal dog fighting.

Vick and three others were charged with violating federal laws against competitive dog fighting, procuring and training pit bulls for fighting and conducting the enterprise across state lines.

Vick and the other defendants — Purnell A. Peace, Quanis L. Phillips and Tony Taylor — were involved in an ongoing animal fighting venture based out of Vick’s home in Smithfield, Va., from early 2001 to April 2007, according to a statement released by the office of the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.

Vick faces $350,000 in fines and six years in prison if convicted of the charges.

Telephone messages left at the offices and home of Vick’s attorney, Larry Woodward, were not immediately returned.

A woman who answered the phone at the home of Vick’s mother said the family knew nothing about the charges.

On July 7, federal authorities conducted a second search of the Surry, Va., property owned by Vick that is the center of the dog fighting investigation.

According to court documents filed by federal authorities earlier this month, dog fights have been sponsored by “Bad Newz Kennels” at the property since at least 2002. For the events, participants and dogs traveled from South Carolina, North Carolina, Maryland, New York, Texas and other states.

Fifty-four pit bulls were recovered from the property during searches in April, along with a “rape stand,” used to hold dogs in place for mating; an electric treadmill modified for dogs; and a bloodied piece of carpeting, the documents said.

During a June search of the property, investigators uncovered the graves of seven pit bulls that were killed by members of “Bad Newz Kennels” following sessions to test whether the dogs would be good fighters, the documents alleged.

Members of “Bad Newz Kennels” also sponsored and exhibited fights in other parts of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Maryland, New Jersey and other states, according to the filings.

On Vick’s Web site, he lists his birthplace as Newport News, “a.k.a. BadNews.”

The documents said the fights usually occurred late at night or in the early morning and would last several hours.

Before fights, participating dogs of the same sex would be weighed and bathed, according to the filings. Opposing dogs would be washed to remove any poison or narcotic placed on the dog’s coat that could affect the other dog’s performance.

Sometimes, dogs weren’t fed to “make it more hungry for the other dog.”

Fights would end when one dog died or with the surrender of the losing dog, which was sometimes put to death by drowning, strangulation, hanging, gun shot, electrocution or some other method, according to the documents.

Vick initially said he had no idea the property might have been used in a criminal enterprise and blamed family members for taking advantage of his generosity.

Vick has since declined to talk about the investigation.

(© 2007 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report. )

Posted by rosevine69 on 07/18 at 05:58 AM
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Friday, April 13, 2007

Emmy-winning actor Roscoe Lee Browne dies

81-year-old actor succumb after a long battle with cancer The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES - Actor Roscoe Lee Browne, whose rich voice and dignified bearing brought him an Emmy Award and a Tony nomination, has died. He was 81.

Browne died early Wednesday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center after a long battle with cancer, said Alan Nierob, a spokesman for the family.

Browne’s career included classic theater to TV cartoons. He also was a poet and a former world-class athlete.

His deep, cultured voice was heard narrating the 1995 hit movie “Babe.” On screen, his character often was smart, cynical and well-educated, whether a congressman, a judge or a butler.

Born to a Baptist minister in Woodbury, N.J., Browne graduated from historically black Lincoln University in Pennsylvania, where he later returned to teach comparative literature and French. He also was a track star, winning the 880-yard run in the 1952 Millrose Games.

Browne was selling wine for an import company when he decided to become a full-time actor in 1956 and had roles that year in the inaugural season of the New York Shakespeare Festival in a production of “Julius Caesar.”

In 1961, he starred in an English-language version of Jean Genet’s play “The Blacks.”

Two years later, he was The Narrator in a Broadway production of “The Ballad of the Sad Cafe,” a play by Edward Albee from a novella by Carson McCullers. In a front page article on the advances made by blacks in the theater, the New York Times noted that Browne’s understudy was white.

He won an Obie Award in 1965 for his role as a rebellious slave in the off-Broadway “Benito Cereno.”

Breaking stereotypes
In movies, he was a spy in the 1969 Alfred Hitchcock feature “Topaz” and a camp cook in 1972’s “The Cowboys,” which starred John Wayne.

“Some critics complained that I spoke too well to be believable” in the cook’s role, Browne told The Washington Post in 1972. “When a critic makes that remark, I think, if I had said, ‘Yassuh, boss’ to John Wayne, then the critic would have taken a shine to me.”

On television, he had several memorable guest roles. He was a snobbish black lawyer trapped in an elevator with bigot Archie Bunker in an episode of the 1970s TV comedy “All in the Family” and the butler Saunders in the comedy “Soap.” He won an Emmy in 1986 for a guest role as Professor Foster on “The Cosby Show.”

In 1992, Browne returned to Broadway in “Two Trains Running,” one of August Wilson’s acclaimed series of plays on the black experience. It won the Tony for best play and brought Browne a Tony nomination for best featured (supporting) actor.

The New York Times said he portrayed “the wry perspective of one who believes that human folly knows few bounds and certainly no racial bounds. The performance is wise and slyly life-affirming.”

Browne also wrote poetry and included some of it along with works by masters such as Lawrence Ferlinghetti and William Butler Yeats in “Behind the Broken Words,” a poetry anthology stage piece that he and Anthony Zerbe performed annually for three decades.

Posted by Nuttshell on 04/13 at 12:13 PM
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Friday, December 29, 2006

Mike Evans, Actor in ‘The Jeffersons,’ Dies at 57

By The Associated Press

TWENTYNINE PALMS, California (AP) - Actor Mike Evans, best known as Lionel Jefferson in the TV comedy series “All in the Family” and “The Jeffersons,” has died. He was 57.

Evans, who was born in Salisbury, N.C., died of throat cancer Dec. 14 at his mother’s home in Twentynine Palms, said his niece, Chrystal Evans.

Evans, along with Eric Monte, also created and wrote for “Good Times,” one of the first TV comedy series that featured a primarily black cast.

Michael Jonas Evans was born Nov. 3, 1949. His father, Theodore Evans Sr., was a dentist while his mother, Annie Sue Evans, was a school teacher.

The family moved to Los Angeles when Evans was a child.

He studied acting at Los Angeles City College before getting the role of Lionel Jefferson in the 1970s situation comedy “All in the Family.”

Evans kept the role of Lionel when “The Jeffersons” launched in 1975. The hit show was a spinoff featuring bigoted Archie Bunker’s black neighbors in Queens who “move on up to the East Side” of Manhattan.

Evans was replaced by Damon Evans (no relation) for four years, then he returned to the series from 1979 to 1981.

He also acted in the 1976 TV miniseries “Rich Man, Poor Man” and made guest appearances on the TV series “Love, American Style” and “The Streets of San Francisco.” His last role was in a 2000 episode of “Walker, Texas Ranger.”

In recent years he had invested in real estate in Southern California.

Posted by Nuttshell on 12/29 at 12:24 AM
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Monday, December 11, 2006

Smokey Robinson -On Being Blackl

Click here to listen to the presentation.  I had to move it because Firefox auto plays the WMV file even though I’ve got it coded NOT to autoplay.

Posted by cricket on 12/11 at 09:30 AM
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Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Stingray Kills ‘Crocodile Hunter’ Irwin


SYDNEY, Australia (CNN)—Steve Irwin, the enthusiastic “Crocodile Hunter” who enthralled audiences around the world with his wildlife adventures, died Monday morning after being stung by a stingray while shooting a TV program off Australia’s north coast.

Media reports say Irwin was snorkeling at Batt Reef, a part of the Great Barrier Reef about 9 miles (about 15 kilometers) from the town of Port Douglas, when the incident happened.

Irwin, 44, was killed by a stingray barb that pierced his chest, according to Cairns police sources.

Irwin was in the area to film pieces for a show called “The Ocean’s Deadliest” with Philippe Cousteau, grandson of Jacques, according to Irwin’s manager and friend John Stainton. But weather had prevented the crew from doing work for that program, Stainton said, so Irwin decided to do some softer features for a new children’s TV show he was doing with his daughter, Bindi.

“He came over the top of a stingray that was buried in the sand, and the barb came up and hit him in the chest,” Stainton said.

Wildlife documentary maker Ben Cropp, citing a colleague who saw footage of the attack, told Time.com that Irwin had accidentally boxed the animal in. “It stopped and twisted and threw up its tail with the spike, and it caught him in the chest,” said Cropp. “It’s a defensive thing. It’s like being stabbed with a dirty dagger.” (Read the TIME.com obituary.)

Ambulance officers confirmed they attended a reef fatality Monday morning off Port Douglas, according to Australian media. (Gallery: The life of the “Crocodile Hunter")

Queensland Police Services also confirmed Irwin’s death and said his family had been notified.

Irwin was director of the Australia Zoo in Queensland. He is survived by his American-born wife, Terri, and their two children, Bindi Sue, born 1998, and Robert (Bob), born December 2003.

“The world has lost a great wildlife icon, a passionate conservationist and one of the proudest dads on the planet,” Stainton told reporters in Cairns, according to The Associated Press. “He died doing what he loved best and left this world in a happy and peaceful state of mind. He would have said, ‘Crocs Rule!’ “ (Watch a remembrance of Steve Irwin—1:58)

“Steve was a larger-than-life force. He brought joy and learning about the natural world to millions and millions of people across the globe,” said Discovery Communications founder and chairman John Hendricks in a statement. “We extend our thoughts and prayers to Terri, Bindi and Bob Irwin as well as to the incredible staff and many friends Steve leaves behind.”

Irwin’s “Crocodile Hunter” show aired on the company’s Animal Planet network.

Cousteau’s office issued a statement that he is “still in Australia with the family of his friend, Steve Irwin. It was a tragic ordeal for everyone on the boat that morning. All of our thoughts are now with Steve’s family.”

Discovery Communications said it will rename the garden space in front of Discovery’s world headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland, the “Steve Irwin Memorial Sensory Garden.”

The company also is looking at the creation of a Steve Irwin Crocodile Hunter Fund. The fund will support wildlife protection, education and conservation, as well as aid Irwin’s Australia Zoo and provide educational support for Bindi and Bob Irwin, the company said.

Australia Prime Minister John Howard said he was “shocked and distressed at Steve Irwin’s sudden, untimely and freakish death,” according to AP. “It’s a huge loss to Australia.”

Irwin became a popular figure on Australian and international television through Irwin’s close handling of wildlife, most notably the capture and relocation of crocodiles.

Irwin’s enthusiastic approach to nature conservation and the environment won him a global following. He was known for his exuberance and use of the catch phrase “Crikey!” (E-mail us: How will you remember Steve Irwin?)

“His message is really about conservation: He really wants to leave the world a better place for everybody,” Animal Planet’s Maureen Smith told CNN.com in April.

“It’s unbelievable, really,” Jack Hanna, the host of “Jack Hanna’s Animal Adventure” and director emeritus of the Columbus (Ohio) Zoo, told CNN. “You think about Steve Irwin and you think of people who are invincible.”

Hanna, a friend of Irwin’s, noted that Irwin’s persona of the Crocodile Hunter was no act. Irwin grew up around crocodiles, snakes and other animals at his parents’ Queensland Reptile and Fauna Park and had been handling such creatures since he was a child.

“Steve really knew what he was doing. He was one of the finest reptile people in the world. He knew more about reptiles than anybody did. He was raised that way,” said Hanna.

Though stingrays can be threatening, their sting—usually prompted by self-defense—is not often fatal. The bull ray that apparently stung Irwin was “a one-in-a-million thing,” Cropp told Time.com. “I have swum with many rays, and I have only had one do that to me.” (Watch a marine biologist talk about the dangers of stingrays—3:48)

“A wild animal is like a loaded gun—it can go off at any time,” Hanna said. “You have to be careful of that.” But, he added, it’s not the animals who are inherently dangerous, but the way they may react around humans. “People use the word ‘dangerous,’ and that sometimes is a word that’s not fair to that animal, because that animal is only using the defenses that God gave it,” said Hanna.

Rise to popularity
Irwin became popular with his show “Crocodile Hunter,” which first aired on Australian TV in 1992. Eventually, the program was picked up by Discovery in the United States, establishing Irwin worldwide.

His popularity led to a film, “The Crocodile Hunter: Collision Course” (2002).

Irwin was caught in a minor flap in January 2004 when he held his then 1-month-old son while feeding a crocodile at his Australian zoo. (Full story)

In 2003, Irwin spoke to the Australian Broadcasting Corp.’s “Australian Story” television program about how he was perceived in his home country.

“When I see what’s happened all over the world, they’re looking at me as this very popular, wildlife warrior Australian bloke,” he told the ABC.

“And yet back here in my own country, some people find me a little bit embarrassing. You know, there’s this ... they kind of cringe, you know, ‘cause I’m coming out with ‘Crikey’ and ‘Look at this beauty.’ “

At Australia Zoo at Beerwah, south Queensland, floral tributes were dropped at the entrance, where a huge fake crocodile gapes, the AP reported. Drivers honked their horns as they passed.

“Steve, from all God’s creatures, thank you. Rest in peace,” was written on a card with a bouquet of native flowers.

“We’re all very shocked. I don’t know what the zoo will do without him. He’s done so much for us, the environment and it’s a big loss,” said Paula Kelly, a local resident and volunteer at the zoo, after dropping off a wreath at the gate, according to the AP.

“He has left a legacy: That people do love some of the unloved animals like crocodiles and reptiles that people wanted to kill,” Stainton told CNN. “He’s actually put a position in their hearts for them. I want that to continue. ... I want people to really go out there and remember Steve Irwin for what he really was, which was a great conservationist, saving wildlife and actually promoting wildlife that people didn’t love.”

Copyright 2006 CNN. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Associated Press contributed to this report.

Posted by loni on 09/05 at 09:25 AM
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‘Idol’ Fantasia Starting Salon Chain

Salons To Raise Funds For Home For Single Mothers
CONCORD, N.C.—Fantasia Barrino is getting into the beauty business. 

The “American Idol” winner has teamed up with Carolina Panthers safety Mike Minter to open a chain of beauty salons to fund a home to help single mothers.

The driving force behind the project is Minter’s sister, Rosalind Beaty.

Beaty said that she hopes to open franchises that will channel their profits to a faith-based, nonprofit residential home for single mothers.

The first shop is due to open this fall in Concord under the name Imaj Salon and Spa.

Barrino won Season 3 of “American Idol” in 2004.

She recently played herself in the Lifetime cable movie “Life is Not a Fairy Tale.”

The film was inspired by her autobiography about dropping out of high school and becoming an unwed mother at 17.

Posted by loni on 09/05 at 08:15 AM
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Is ‘Vixen’ fixin’ Whitney’s woes?

in other entertainment news...............

Whitney Houston appears to have rid herself of hubby Bobby Brown. Whether he gets back into the house may depend on hip-hop temptress Karrine Steffans.
Houston’s friends have long blamed Brown for her woefully heavy eyelids. So they’re praying she has the strength to change the locks.

Good thing, then, that he’s been distracted by Karrine. You remember Karrine. Back when she was, as she puts it, “a coke whore,” hip-hop playas called her Superhead. But then she sobered up and wrote a best seller, “Confessions of a Video Vixen,” recounting the bedroom (and backseat) quirks of Usher, Diddy, Vin Diesel, Shaquille O’Neal and Ja Rule, among others.

She also wrote about Bobby - their bizarre 2002 encounter when “he told me he was a member of Al Qaeda and that President Bush was looking for him.”

Lately, she’s been seen around L.A. with him. So what’s up with them?

“It’s a really tricky situation,” she told us this week, as she test-drove a Mercedes SLK 280. “He is my dearest friend. But I’m not saying it’s romantic. We won’t know what it is till we’re ready.

“There’s a wife and children involved,” the single mom went on. “I don’t want to wreck any marriages. But if a marriage is already wrecked, that’s not my fault.”

So she and Bobby have been intimate? “It’s none of your business,” she scolded. “I’m still celibate. And if you believe that, I’ll tell you another one.”

“Look,” she said, shifting the Benz into a higher gear, “there are way bigger things in the works than a romance. I’m a businesswoman. Bobby and I are working together on some things.”

Somebody told online gossip Janet Charleton that Karrine is “using Bobby because she wants her own reality show.”

“Please,” she said. “You think I need Bobby Brown to get a reality show? I’ve turned down four reality shows.”

And what about the supposed “love of my life,” Bill Maher? In April, Karrine told us that she was so besotted by the comic that “I will never be with another man.”

“We still talk,” she says. “I’m going to have dinner with Bill next week” to celebrate her 28th birthday.

As for Whitney, she says, “I’ve never met her, but I’m a big fan. I want her to come back and sing her heart out.”

Posted by loni on 09/05 at 08:13 AM
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Ronald Isley gets 3 years in tax evasion

In entertainment news......

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Isley Brothers lead singer Ronald Isley has been sentenced to three years and one month in prison for tax evasion.

Isley was also ordered to pay $3.1 million in back taxes to the Internal Revenue Service, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Conte.

He was convicted last year of five counts of tax evasion and one count of willful failure to file a tax return.

During a hearing Friday, defense attorney Anthony Alexander argued that the 65-year-old singer should receive probation instead of prison time because of complications from a stroke and a recent bout with kidney cancer. Isley is expected to be sent to a prison hospital facility.

Alexander also pleaded for leniency because Isley had been attempting to pay down his IRS debt.

But U.S. District Judge Dean Pregerson declined to sentence the R&B singer to less time than called for under federal guidelines.

“The term serial tax avoider has been used. I think that’s appropriate,” Pregerson said.

Alexander argued during trial that “unfortunate circumstances,” such as the deaths of two of Isley’s accountants, made him unable to get records together and pay taxes during the years that led to the criminal charges.

Posted by loni on 09/05 at 08:09 AM
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Croc hunter dies…..What aweful news for animals everywhere

BRISBANE, Australia (CNN)—“Crocodile Hunter” Steve Irwin, the Australian naturalist killed by a stingray on Monday, was filmed removing a poisonous barb from his chest just before he died, according to news reports.

Irwin’s manager John Stainton, who was among the television crew on the reef, said the accident was caught on videotape, according to The Associated Press.

He described the footage of his friend dying as “terrible,” the AP reported.

“It shows that Steve came over the top of the ray and the tail came up, and spiked him (in the chest), and he pulled it out and the next minute he’s gone,” AP reported Stainton as saying.

“That was it. The cameraman had to shut down (after that),” Stainton said.

As fellow countrymen and fans from around the world mourned his death, it was announced that a state funeral for Irwin would be held if his family so chose, an Australian state premier said.

“We will honor Steve Irwin in whatever way his family wants,” said Queensland Premier Peter Beattie, speaking to CNN affiliate Channel Seven.

“ ... We will approach the family and we would obviously be keen to honor him in some sort of way from the Queensland Government point of view, from the state’s point of view, but we would only do that with the family’s approval.”

For the past week, Irwin, 44, had been working on an underwater documentary at Batt Reef in the Great Barrier Reef off Port Douglas in Queensland state.

Bad weather for the past few days had made it impossible to proceed with a planned taping for the Animal Planet channel, so Irwin instead chose Monday to shoot “a couple of soft stories for a new TV show we’re doing,” Stainton said.

“He and the underwater cameraman went out to do some pieces on the reef and coral and stuff good for the kids’ show and, unfortunately, he came out over the top of a stingray that was buried in the sand and the barb went up and hit him in the chest.”

Rescuers put Irwin aboard his research vessel, Croc 1, and attempted to resuscitate him during the 30-minute dash to nearby Lowe Isle, where a medical helicopter was available to take him to a hospital, but the effort proved futile.

The barb had pierced his chest, hospital sources said. News reports say he went into cardiac arrest after he was stung. His body was flown to the city of Cairns.

Irwin was director of the Australian Zoo in Queensland. He is survived by his American-born wife, Terri, and their two children, Bindi Sue, 8, and Robert (Bob), 3.

Terri Irwin was told of her husband’s death while on a walking tour in Tasmania, and returned Monday night to the Sunshine Coast with the children.

‘There’s always a risk’
“It’s just one of these bizarre events that really make you take stock of your life,” Animal Planet host Jeff Corwin told CNN. “The reality is, there’s always a risk when you work with wildlife. You do your best to take precautions.”

Fellow animal handler and conservationist Jack Hanna said, “It’s a tragic thing. It’s unbelievable, really. When you think of Steve Irwin, you think of people who are invincible.”

Hanna agreed with Corwin that the accident underscores the danger of working with wild animals.

“Ninety-nine percent of the time, when someone is hurt by an animal, it is your fault,” he said. “You have to be careful of that. You have to know what your limits are. What that animal is.

“People use the word dangerous and that sometimes is a word that’s not fair to that animal because the animal has been given the defenses that God gave it, so you have to understand what all that is involved and if you understand that, hopefully nothing will happen.”

Irwin’s exuberant approach to nature conservation and the environment also won him a global following, and he and his wife became well-known figures on international television.

TV viewers loved his outlandish stunts, even though one of them generated controversy.

Many viewers were upset with him two years ago when he held out his infant son as he was feeding a snapping crocodile at his zoo.

In 2003, Irwin spoke to the Australian Broadcasting Corp.’s Australian Story television program about how he was perceived in his home country.

“When I see what’s happened all over the world, they’re looking at me as this very popular, wildlife warrior Australian bloke,” he said. “And yet back here in my own country, some people find me a little bit embarrassing. You know, there’s this—they kind of cringe, you know, ‘cause I’m coming out with ‘crikey’ and ‘look at this beauty.’”

Fund may be established
Discovery Communications, which produces Animal Planet, said it was considering setting up a fund that would accept donations in Irwin’s name to support wildlife protection, education, conservation, Irwin’s zoo and the education of his children.

A sensory garden located outside the company’s Silver Springs, Maryland, headquarters will be renamed in his honor, said Annie Howell, senior vice president of communications for Discovery Communications.

At the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, which has an exhibit where people can safely touch stingrays, marine biologist Ray Davis said stingray barbs are serrated, can reach 12 inches in length and are used as a defensive mechanism.

“The stingray swings its tail up over its back; the barb is then not really laying against the tail but comes out a bit and allows them to slash or jab to try and get the predator away from them.”

Once the barb has pierced the skin, it injects venom, which can be excruciatingly painful, said the vice president of zoological operations, who said he was speaking from experience.

“It can be very crippling,” he said.

But fish venom is heat-sensitive, and relief is almost immediate once the affected area is immersed in near-scalding water, he said.

CNN’s John Vause contributed to this report.

Posted by rosevine69 on 09/05 at 05:27 AM
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Friday, August 11, 2006

From The Streets To Corporate Suites: How Homeless Man Made Millions

Scotty Ballard
July 31, 2006

No test. No testimony. Meeting affable multimillionaire Chris Gardner is like spending time with a favorite uncle eager to share the secrets of his steely business acumen that made him one of the most successful Black men on Wall Street and allowed him to build a prosperous brokerage firm in the financial district of Chicago.

But this CEO of Gardner Rich & Co. is also the boy who endured a difficult upbringing in 1950s Milwaukee with his siblings and mother, Bettye Jean Gardner.

The 52-year-old author unabashedly cherishes the memories of his late mother whom he believed when she told him, “If you want to, one day you could make a million dollars.” He followed that beacon of belief even when circumstances left him homeless and sleeping in public parks with his son tied to his back.

His memoir, The Pursuit of Happyness (Amistad/HarperCollins $ 25.95) unblinkingly focuses on universal topics like domestic abuse, illiteracy, mental illness, child molestation, alcoholism, poverty and homelessness-while serving as roadside assistance for all the “baby daddies” in need of help on the path of fatherhood.

Actor/rapper/producer Will Smith was so taken by the book he bought the rights to it and is set to star in its movie adaptation this December.

Gardner migrated to San Francisco following a stint in the Navy. There he became a medical supplies salesman, barely making enough money to support his girlfriend and infant son. In 1981 he had a life-changing moment when he spotted a man in a red Ferrari looking for a place to park.

“I said to him, ‘You can have my parking place, but I’ve got to ask you two questions: What do you do? And how do you do that?’”

The man said he was a stockbroker who made $ 80,000 a month, $ 50,000 more than Gardner made in a year.

Gardner, although a gifted learner in the medical field, hadn’t graduated from high school and had never even met a stockbroker except for the one in the red Ferrari.

“If you want to, one day you could make a million dollars.”

“I got this idea I wanted to be on Wall Street, so I started pursuing that. [My girl] wasn’t particularly supportive of it, I think her words were that I was ‘delusional and unrealistic.’ She had a point. A major wall street firm required an MBA to get in the training program. I had never gone to college; it didn’t mean I wasn’t bright, I just didn’t have the papers. . . things got a little more tense economically. . . “

With no MBA or experience, he found a brokerage firm willing to take him. Gardner quit his job, but when he showed up for work he discovered the person who hired him had been fired and Gardner’s opportunity was gone.

Days before a critical interview with another brokerage firm, with money getting tight and tempers flaring, Gardner says that he and his girlfriend got into an argument that sent the police to their residence and set off what he describes in his book “a series of events that spiral meteorically out of control.”

While looking for work, Gardner had amassed over a thousand dollars in unpaid parking tickets, something the police discovered when they ran his fingerprints.

“Mr. Gardner, you owe the state of California $ 1,200. How do you want to settle this?” he was asked during his court appearance.

He didn’t have the money and was thrown in jail for 10 days.

Although Gardner managed to reschedule his interview and get the job, he was unable to return home and had to live in a boarding house. No one knew he spent some nights sleeping under his desk.

Months later when he was reunited with his son, he realized the boarding house didn’t allow children.

“That’s how we became homeless,” he states.

Some days when Gardner couldn’t afford day care, he’d take his son to work with him. Some nights when he didn’t sleep with his son under his desk, they slept in a park near San Francisco’s Union Square “real close to my old neighborhood-which was like a ghetto on steroids.”

“I wasn’t just homeless, but homeless with a baby tied to my back. The fear of where you gonna go? You’re going to some place, you don’t know where, but you got to go. It’s the not knowing, you don’t know what to be afraid of.”

As Gardner reflects on the moment he says that anytime he goes back to San Francisco, as part of his growing process, “I always go to the same hotel that overlooks that park, and I stay there for this reason: I want to be able to look down there and say, ‘Boy, you’ve come a long way.’ I gotta tell you, when you’re up there in the presidential suite and you look outside to see where you slept in the park with you’re baby tied on your back. . . you don’t sleep, you pray a lot,” he says sighing heavily. “You pray a lot, baby!”

Finally, they moved into a homeless hotel run by the Glide Memorial United Methodist Church.

“There were no keys, so every day you take everything with you,” says Gardner.

A large part of his stockbroker trainee salary went to day care, but after a year he eventually managed to squirrel away enough to rent a place to stay.

“I realized I wasn’t homeless when I put my bags down and didn’t have to carry everything.”

But the next morning as they went to leave, his son hadn’t yet understood poppa’s stone had stopped rolling.

“He didn’t want to leave our things. He started picking up stuff saying, ‘Poppa we need this,’ and was trying to pick up whatever he could, saying, ‘Poppa we have to bring this. You forgot this. We need our stuff. . . ‘

“You don’t know how good it felt to be able to explain to your child, ‘No son, we don’t have to carry everything anymore. We have a key. We’re home.’

“Were things still rough? Sure they were. But they were manageable. . . our worries weren’t all behind us,” Gardner declared in his book. “Early on when I missed a couple of electric bill payments. . . [and had to give my son] a bath by candlelight. . . where I wanted to be seem so far in the distance. . . then my son looked at me, with his face illuminated by the light of the candle, ‘Poppa, you know what? You’re a good poppa.’ Aw, man, I forgot the worries.”

From that point his career bloomed.

“If you want to, one day you could make a million dollars.”

Mementos of Gardner’s humble beginnings and world-class travels decorate his stylish Chicago office; a little desk, the first piece of furniture in his office. And his prized possession: a crystal vase filled with soil from South Africa.

“This is dirt from [former South African president Nelson] Mandela’s backyard. He knew the house was bugged. . . so the times he had to talk to someone they’d go out into the yard and walk around. . . they cried their tears in there. . . if I had to grab one thing and leave because of an emergency, that would be it.”

Gardner admits that he cried when he met Mandela because the former jailed freedom fighter greeted him with words no man had ever said to him before. “He said, ‘Welcome home, son.’”

Gardner says he got a revelation about South Africa after his cathartic meeting with Mandela.

“No test, no testimony,” says Gardner adding that “God was getting me ready. . . I had to go to boot camp. I didn’t know it at the time.

“The good Lord has something He wants me to do in South Africa. That can’t nobody on Wall Street do. I believe that. And had I not had the experiences that I did have, had I not had the life I have had, I could be just another cat writing tickets and making money.

“There’s a little piece of work we all can do called God’s work, and I’m trying to do my little piece and ain’t nobody got to say it’s OK but me and Him.”

Posted by Nuttshell on 08/11 at 03:07 PM
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