Archive for the 'celebrity' Category

Court-appearance Fashion Back in the News

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Stefanie Cohen at the New York Post has an article in today’s paper about starlets in New York taking advantage of their court appearances to get photographed wearing trend-setting outfits: Haute court-ture! It includes this obscure quote from the operator of an obscure blog, discussing his obsessive interest in an earlier courtroom fashionista, Winona Ryder:

John Callender, a Web developer for eBay and longtime political blogger on his site, found himself obsessed with Ryder’s clothing choices, and couldn’t help but comment on them.

“I was kidding at first, but then I realized her clothing choices were more interesting than the trial,” he says.

“The lawyers are creating a story for the jury and the judge and the press, so it’s sort of legitimate for celebrities to present themselves in a certain way.”

It was fun, if kind of weird, being interviewed about fashion. For a trip down memory lane, see: WinonaRyderOnTrial.

Drum on Excess Certainty

Thursday, March 26th, 2009

Kevin Drum is a very smart dude: Listening to the Talking Heads. (Note: not the David Byrne Talking Heads.)

Colbert Perhaps Not So Funny Afterall

Wednesday, October 31st, 2007

This may also be in the “lighten up” category, but I have to admit that Eric Boehlert makes a point about Colbert’s fake candidacy, and the enormous media coverage it’s received. The joke is indeed on the press here, and as typical for the Stewart and Colbert crew, there’s serious news behind it.

I have enough personal interest in the process and the candidates that I’ve spent the time to read all about their stances, voting records and personal stories — so the ongoing campaign coverage doesn’t really do much for me. As such I find Colbert’s run pretty hilarious, but it could be argued that it’s not so funny when the media probably should be spending their time on more complete coverage of the real candidates in this the most important part of our representative governmental process.

Why is the media seemingly ignoring Ron Paul (who, while I wouldn’t pick him, is probably the candidate who America as a whole really wants) while continuing to cover a joke? Why is it that when I mention Obama to my coworkers, they still wonder aloud “isn’t he a Muslim or something?”

Colbert Does Dowd

Monday, October 15th, 2007

It’s just a quick funny, but very much in keeping with the spirit: Stephen Colbert writes Maureen Dowd’s column, unleashing his double-ironic conservative fury on the NY Times Op-ed. My favorite bit, explaining the confusing nature of 2008 presidential candidates:

For instance, Hillary Clinton. I can’t remember if I’m supposed to be scared of her so Democrats will think they should nominate her when she’s actually easy to beat, or if I’m supposed to be scared of her because she’s legitimately scary.

Or Rudy Giuliani. I can’t remember if I’m supposed to support him because he’s the one who can beat Hillary if she gets nominated, or if I’m supposed to support him because he’s legitimately scary.


Obama’s Identity Struggle

Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

I found this piece in GQ on Barack Obama, following and interviewing him on the campaign trail, to be an interesting look at the presidential election grinder. As the author describes it, Obama’s dogged determination to keep his ideals and speak substantively, even when it alienates some constituency, runs directly against the currents of campaign vote-winning and the media soundbite machine. Obama says:

“The danger … is that you start becoming so risk-averse that you become canned and scripted, and I’m resisting that, which means there’s still gonna be some times when I want to push the boundaries a little bit, try to make a point…”

Certainly reading this does nothing but increase my desperate desire to see this man become our President, but no matter your opinion of Obama, it’s interesting reading about the difficulties of any candidate balancing his/her principles against the conflicting practicalities of getting elected. Even though there are issues on which I disagree with Obama, it’s his judgment that I increasingly feel is his real strength — but that’s a difficult message played against Edwards’ populist bombast and Clinton’s stern-faced “readiness to be President”.

Colbert, Backstage with Kerry

Saturday, August 25th, 2007

I’m still more of a Jon Stewart man, but this Josh Marshall footage of Colbert out of character with John Kerry is pretty cool.

George Clooney Is in a Tight Spot

Monday, October 24th, 2005

I’m a fan of George Clooney, so I found this article interesting, if worrisome: Clooney: film injury made me suicidal.

Tyra Bank’s (Natural) Breasts

Friday, October 14th, 2005

Hm. My fixation on Plamegate and Bush’s resulting facial tics has definitely left my coverage severely imbalanced. How else to explain my having missed this story? Model Tyra Banks gets nasty rumor off chest on TV.

[Plastic surgeon Garth] Fischer said, “I’ve performed approximately 8,000 breast implant surgeries, I’ve examined you, I’ve reviewed your sonogram… and Tyra Banks has natural breasts.”

Weisberg on Politicians Being Celebrities and Celebrities Being Politicians

Thursday, October 13th, 2005

I thought this item from Slate was fairly thought-provoking: Condi, Hillary, and … Angelina?

Jack White Admits Lying about Meg

Thursday, September 8th, 2005

Not really news, since Jack and Meg White’s (of the White Stripes’) marriage certificate was posted on the Internet years ago, and they had never publicly responded to the allegation that they weren’t actually brother and sister, as their publicity bios claimed. But now it’s official: In a recent interview Jack admits that the pair (now divorced) started off as a husband-and-wife team: Jack White admits relationship lie.

White told Rolling Stone magazine that the pair came up with the lie to deflect interest away from their personal lives and to make people concentrate on the music.

He said: “It’s funny that people think me and Meg sit up late at night, in front of a gas lamp, and come up with these intricate lies to trick people.

“If we had presented ourselves in another fashion… how would we have been perceived, right off the bat? When you see a band that is two pieces, husband and wife, boyfriend and girlfriend, you think, ‘Oh, I see…”

“When they’re brother and sister, you go, ‘Oh, that’s interesting.’ You care more about the music, not the relationship.”

Um, okay.

More on Cindy Sheehan and Israel

Thursday, August 18th, 2005

Cindy Sheehan offered some additional detail about the alleged email to Nightline in her DailyKos diary entry today: Vigils.

Another thing is that the Israel thing has not died. I did not say that my son died for Israel. I have never said it, I don?t think it, I don?t believe it. It is just another lie, smear tactic from the right. It needs to die right now. It?s not the truth. I stand by everything that I have said. But I will not stand by things that I haven?t said. I am not anti-Semitic. I am just anti-killing. George Bush is responsible for killing so many people, but nobody scrutinizes anything he says, especially leading up to the war. Since there is nothing to smear me about with the truth, they have to tell lies. A former friend who is anti-Israel and wants to use the spotlight on me to push his anti-Semitism is telling everyone who is listening that I believe that Casey died for Israel and has gone so far as to apparently doctor an email from me. People have to know that he doesn?t speak for me. ABC Nightline can?t confirm his email is real and therefore any reporting on it is irresponsible. That is not my issue. That is not my message and anyone who knows me knows it doesn?t sound like me.

I’m focused on my mission in Crawford: to meet with the President and demand answers. That?s it. I have spent enough time on that. Enough is enough.

Later in the same entry she includes a letter allegedly from Rabbi Arthur Waskow, vouching for her and bolstering her version of events.

As I was saying to Janus/Onan in Ishar earlier today, I feel like I’m perfectly poised between skepticism and credulity on this one. Both explanations (that she’s telling the truth, and the person who forwarded her email to Nightline doctored it to inject an anti-Israel screed; or that she’s spinning about a statement she actually made, but now realizes could undercut her efectiveness) seem pretty much equally plausible to me.

Which means, of course, that both the pro- and anti-Cindy people will be confident that the facts support their position, with at least one of those groups being wrong.

I’m really curious which one it is.

Update: Stephen Spruiell on National Review Online (which it must be said is only a step or two above places like in my personal trustworthiness scale) says he has some information that would tend to undercut Cindy’s “my ex-friend doctored it” explanation: Sheehan herself sent “Israel” letter to friend.

Of course, this is the beauty of the right-wing echo chamber: Even if Cindy’s version of events is perfectly true, this kind of stuff will predictably succeed in changing the subject and distracting people from her actual message. Whereas if she is trying to spin away earlier statements she actually made, they just get to push it that much harder.

It’s the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth all over again.

Later update: MSNBC: Antiwar mom leaving camp to aid ailing mother. Cindy’s mother is in the emergency room in Los Angeles after a stroke, apparently, and she’s left the camp to be with her. Ymatt’s instantaneous comment:

Yserbius . o O ( rove killed mrs. sheehan! )

Let the conspiracy theorists commence theorizing!

Walken: If Nominated, Will Not Run; If Elected, Will Not Serve

Thursday, August 18th, 2005

Sometimes I link to things that you wouldn’t think I would, and sometimes I don’t link to things that seem like they’re right up my alley. I don’t know why that is. It’s a complex equation.

For example, I saw everyone linking to that site a week or two ago, and I took a look at it, but said, meh, not interested. It’s not that I necessarily believed it to be a hoax, but there really just didn’t seem to be any there there. I guess I figured if it was real, there’d be time to talk about it later, and if it wasn’t, I didn’t want to waste my time.

Anyway, a few days go by, and the word is out: Walken presidency site a hoax ( See also’s Mike Yamamoto: Christopher Walken for president!

To you more-credulous types, see? That’s what you get for jumping into something before it has received the imprimatur of authenticity.

Fred Brito: Con Man

Thursday, August 18th, 2005

I enjoyed this article in the LA Times the other day, and feel like I’d be remiss if I didn’t link to it from, the weblog-of-record for shameless deception: Fred’s storied career (login required, cypherpunk98/cypherpunk works).

Brito, 49, has spent his adult life using aliases and phony credentials to pull off one elaborate deception after another. He has lied his way into jobs as a Catholic priest, a youth counselor for a foster care agency and executive director of the National Kidney Foundation of Southern California, among many others. He once convinced a judge he was a psychiatrist in order to testify in a friend’s criminal trial.

With the Times’ web-hostile archive policy, the story won’t be there for long, but it’s available for now.

Triumph Thinks the Michael Jackson Trial is Great… for Him to Poop On!

Tuesday, June 14th, 2005

So, I guess there was some sort of trial up the road in Santa Maria that ended yesterday? At least, I noticed that at one point in the afternoon the same dumb program, in which a swarm of helicopters follwed a line of black SUVs, was on every channel.


It’s a little late, but Triumph is always good for a laugh. Courtesy of anti-copyright superhero Norm of One Good Move (I think he has a spandex suit in the closet that says “Fair Use Man!” in bold letters across the chest): Triumph The Insult Comic Dog and MJ Fans.

Wil Wheaton Hears Voices, Does Drugs; Millions Watch

Monday, March 14th, 2005

The CSI episode in which former Starfleet Ensign Crusher played a deranged killer aired the other day, though I didn’t watch it (I’ve seen about half of one CSI episode, ever; I have a high threshold for allowing new addictions into my life). Anyway, here’s his description of watching the episode, including his 22 seconds of I-am-not-just-a-child-actor validation: tall buildings shake voices escape. You can also read this recent New York Times piece about the former Wesley: A computer is also a screen, Wil Wheaton discovers.

(Oh, and courtesy of the newfound lack of topic icons, I easily create a new category for ‘television’. Yee ha.)


Monday, February 21st, 2005

From CNN: Hunter S. Thompson dead at 67.

The writer himself, Hoag said, will be missed. “There’s no one in the world these days who writes the truth … as he seems to, to me,” he said. “He spoke to the world and said what people were afraid to say.”

CNN CEO Agrees with Jon Stewart, Fires Tucker Carlson

Thursday, January 6th, 2005

CNN CEO Jonathon Klein didn’t go so far as to publicly call Tucker Carlson a dick, but he did describe himself as “coming down more firmly in the Jon Stewart camp” in announcing the firing of his bow-tied Crossfire shouting head: CNN dumps Tucker Carlson. Klein characterized the dismissal as part of a larger effort to treat the audience with more “respect.”


Cheevy: Sigourney Weaver for Queen of America

Friday, October 22nd, 2004

Janus/Onan was right: I did indeed like the following from Miniver Cheevy: Queen.

Your Photo Here: Kramer is Former Mayor of Phoenix

Saturday, September 11th, 2004

Props to my buddy Wess for pointing me to this AZCentral story about Phoenix Arizona having no pictures whatsoever of C.J. Dyer — the city’s 15th mayor (for 5 months in 1899). So, doing what few cities in the country would do, they hung a picture of Seinfeld’s Michael Richards in it’s place.

Ensign Crusher! Belay that Political Speech at Once!

Thursday, June 10th, 2004

From Sequential Tart comes this really cool interview with Wil Wheaton, late of Star Trek: The Next Generation: Not Just a Geek, part II. Even if you don’t care about Star Trek, and his recent writing activities, you should still read it. Just invert his advice, and skip to the political commentary toward the end. Heh. (Wil’s own commentary on his commentary available on his weblog: is this not what you expected to see?)