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Showing posts from November, 2011

Pick Me Up of the Day

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Daniel Garofali as featured on DNA.

Daniel Radcliffe to play Allen Ginsberg

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TwitchFilm reports: Daniel Radcliffe has been cast as poet Allen Ginsberg in the film Kill Your Darlings.

According to the site, Radcliffe expressed his desire to the French press to play a gay character. As soon as he ends his run in Broadway's How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Radcliffe will replace the departing Jesse Eisenberg in the drama.

The screenplay is based on a fascinating incident that took place in the relationship between Ginsberg and fellow members of the Beat circle, Jack Kerouac and Lucien Carr. In 1944, Carr, who was heterosexual and is the father of The Alienist author Caleb Carr, murdered David Kammerer, who had been obsessively pursuing the 19 year old. While some of their friends presumed the two men were sexually involved, Carr and their mutual friend William Burroughs insisted they weren't.

Chris Evans has been attached to portray Kerouac, with Ben Wishaw as Carr. Written and directed by John Krokidas and produced by Christine Vachon. With…

Dionne Warwick reflects on her commitment to fighting AIDS

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The Advocate's Julie Bolcer reports:
Almost 30 years have passed since Dionne Warwick and friends Elton John, Gladys Knight, and Stevie Wonder recorded their smash-hit charity single, “That’s What Friends Are For.” The song generated over $3 million for the American Foundation for AIDS Research and heralded a new era of celebrity-driven fundraising and activism.

Some things have not changed for the New Jersey-born performer whose career has spanned five decades of hits.

“Lyrically, it’s the same message of ‘I’m going to be there for you,’” said Warwick, 70, before a September town hall she organized on HIV/AIDS in New York City. “Friends are the ones who are there for you. That’s exactly what this is all about. Being human. Having humanity.”

The town hall, presented with Harlem United Community AIDS Center, drew nearly 200 audience members, most of them African-American, to ask questions and hear perspectives from leaders in the health, policy, advocacy, and religious communities. Pa…

Remembering Freddie Mercury on the 20th anniversary of his death

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Freddie Mercury died 20 years ago last Thursday. The Queen singer and songwriter had been secretly battling AIDS for four years, announcing that he had contracted the disease on Nov. 23, 1991, one day before he passed away of AIDS-related bronchopneumonia. He was 45.

Known for his wide vocal range and unparalleled showmanship, the Zanzibar-born Mercury (nee Farrokh Bulsara) also wrote many of Queen’s biggest hits including the six-minute-long rock opus "Bohemian Rhapsody,” sports anthems "We Are the Champions" and “We Will Rock You” and throwback "Crazy Little Thing Called Love.”

“Somebody to Love” and “Fat Bottom Girls” both got the Glee treatment this year, but in many ways, Mercury remains nearly as relevant today as his was throughout the 1970s and 1980s. Just ask Katy Perry, who dressed up as the Queen frontman for her 24th birthday party in 2008, or Lady Gaga, who named herself after a Queen song. American Idol glam rocker Adam Lambert has also cited the magnet…

Holiday flash mob entertains travelers at Denver airport

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(Via Towleroad)

Google repaints a fence for Mark Twain's birthday

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If Mark Twain — also known as Samuel Clemens — were alive today, he would be celebrating his 176th birthday right now. But since the author isn't around to blow out candles or eat cake, Google is marking the occasion by putting some of his beloved characters onto its homepage.

Like other birthday doodles, Twain's is a charming tribute to one of his most memorable accomplishments. The illustration features characters from two of Twain's most popular novels, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. The two fellas are recreating a well-known scene — one in which a boy by the name of Tom Sawyer tricks friends into whitewashing a fence for him — with a slight Google twist.

PC Mag has more on the life and times of Mark Twain.

(Via Digital Life)

Apple, Amazon lead big tech Black Friday

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CNN reports: Hot-selling gadgets by Apple and Amazon appeared to drive tech sales on what, by all accounts, was a massive Black Friday.

Apple's retail stores had their biggest sales day of all time, according to published reports.

9to5 Mac, an Apple-oriented blog, quoted an unnamed "source inside Apple Retail," saying that the company had predicted sales four-times bigger than normal and topped that mark by 7 p.m.

iPad and Macbook Air sales were "exceptionally strong," according to the source, who gave the blog a copy of an Apple Store inventory report.

Fortune's Phillip Elmer-Dewitt noted his findings, as well as a separate Deutsche Bank analysis in which 75% of Apple Stores surveyed said they'd sold out of the iPhone 4S by the end of the day Friday.

Apple tends to avoid discounting its products, but this year offered some deals on Black Friday.

Meanwhile, the Kindle Fire tablet -- which may become the strongest challenger yet to Apple's iPad -- led the …

TLC member files for bankruptcy again

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Today reports: TLC member T-Boz has filed for bankruptcy for the second time in less than a year. According to documents filed last month in U.S. Bankruptcy Court, the singer owes creditors $768,642.99, mainly from mortgages on her $1.2 million house.

She has filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection, which enables people with regular income to create a plan to repay their debts. She entered a similar bankruptcy protection filing with the United States Bankruptcy Court of Northern District of Georgia in February, but it was dismissed the following month.

Though TLC have had ten Top 10 singles and four multi-platinum albums, the documents reveal that T-Boz only earns an average of $1,200 per month in royalties from those records. Nevertheless, her total assets are $1.716 million, she takes in around $11,700 per month in income, and her monthly expenses are $8,821.

The singer believes that she could have avoided bankruptcy if she had been able to collect $250,000 in child support from her…

UK tabloid editor defends hacking tactics

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy--> Must be seen to be believed.

Hospitalized George Michael is 'improving'

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Reuters reports: British singer George Michael's health is improving, doctors treating him in Vienna for pneumonia said in a statement today.

The 48-year-old former Wham! frontman was Hospitalized in the Austrian capital and diagnosed with severe pneumonia, forcing him to cancel the remainder of his European tour.

"The latest development in Mr. Michael's case -- which has evolved from a severe pneumococcal infection -- necessitated intensive care due to its severity and extension," said professors Gottfried Locker and Christoph Zielinski.

"We are happy to announce that Mr. Michael is improving steadily with an impressive regression of pneumonic symptoms and follows a steady rate of improvement as hoped.

"As we said previously, complete rest and peace and quiet are mandatory."

Miley Cyrus posts OWS tribute video

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New York Magazine's Vulture reports that Miley Cyrus is getting political.

The now 19-year-old singer/actress posted a homemade video in support of the Occupy Wall Street protesters to her YouTube account last week.

The peace-sign flashing teen set a dance remix of her song "Liberty Walk" to footage from Occupy protests, noting that her video is dedicated "to the thousands of people who are standing up for what they believe in."

As the Village Voice points out, Cyrus has received some negative feedback on her video, perhaps because the wealthy pop star is part of the 1% or maybe fans were just disappointed she didn’t use “Party in the U.S.A.”

In related and less important news: the former Disney darling is currently dealing with the fallout from a joke she made about being a 'stoner'.

(Via the Marquee Blog)

More than 200 arrested in peaceful sweep of Occupy L.A.

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The LA Times reports: Without resorting to large-scale violence, Los Angeles police successfully cleared out the Occupy L.A. camp at City Hall early today, managing to avoid fierce confrontations that marred sweeps in Oakland and New York.

Hundreds of police officers swarmed the large camp at City Hall’s south lawn shortly after midnight, encircling the demonstrators in less than 10 minutes. By quickly establishing a perimeter, police managed to take control of the scene in the first moments of engagement.

No tear gas was used in the shutdown of what was the nation's largest remaining Occupy camp. More than 200 people were arrested in the operation that involved 1,400 officers.

“They were like storm troopers. They encircled us,” said protester Cheryl Aichele, who was sitting in the middle of the south lawn in a circle with other protesters when police first entered the camp.

The protesters largely kept to their promise of confronting the police peacefully. While some taunted police ve…

Occupy Nashville aims to bridge political divides

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MSNBC reports: Compared to Occupy protests on the coasts, the rebel encampment tucked between Tennessee’s War Memorial Plaza and the Statehouse – a few dozen tents adorned with American flags and even a libertarian one – has a decidedly Southern feel.

While protesters in New York, California and elsewhere may often pass their downtime playing drums, meditating or knitting, their Tennessee counterparts could be playing football, hosting a square dance, flying kites, skateboarding or welcoming opponents with cookies.

And if conversations on the coasts tend toward left-wing political theory, such as anarchy, Marxism and socialism, protesters here work on bridging a different divide: uniting the “blue” and “red” factions in their local audience.

"We do have a lot of conservative voices in this camp and the thing that is really appealing to all of us is we believe in the common ties that bind us,” said Samantha Blanchard, a 30-year-old office administrator who was sheltering in a tent as…

Conrad Murray sentenced to four years behind bars

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The doctor who was convicted in the overdose death of Michael Jackson was sentenced to the maximum four years behind bars today ending the tormented saga of the King of Pop.

Dr. Conrad Murray sat stoically with his hands crossed as Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor repeatedly chastised him for what he called a "horrific violation of trust" while caring for Jackson.

Murray will likely only serve two years due to California jail overcrowding.

"Dr. Murray created a set of circumstances and became involved in a cycle of horrible medicine," the judge said. "The practice of propofol for medicine madness, which violated his sworn obligation, for money, fame, prestige and whatever else may have occurred."

Pastor said one of the most disturbing aspects of Murray's case was a slurred recording of Jackson recovered from the doctor's cell phone.

"That tape recording was Dr. Murray's insurance policy," Pastor said. "It was designed to record hi…

Facebook, FTC reach settlement over privacy violations

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Today, Facebook reached a settlement agreement with the Federal Trade Commission regarding the social network's policy on changing privacy controls and informing users of those changes.

Under the terms of the settlement Facebook must obtain approval from users before making changes to the way their personal data is shared on the network. For the next 20 years, Facebook must also submit to scheduled checkups by "independent, third-party auditors" to ensure that the company's privacy policies and practices do not violate users' rights.

"Facebook is obligated to keep the promises about privacy that it makes to its hundreds of millions of users," said FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz, according to a release published by the agency. "Facebook's innovation does not have to come at the expense of consumer privacy. The FTC action will ensure it will not."

More at the Huffington Post.

Joe Jonas: Latino?

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Joe Jonas wonders why it is some of his fans wonder if he doesn't have some Latin action going on.

New York nights are made of this

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Kenzie Roth, Zack Durham and Francisco Escobar star in 'New York Nights' in the third issue of Coitus magazine, photographed by Greg Vaughan and styled by Lauren Edelstein.

A few more shorts at Homotography.

JbDubs
"I Hate My Job"

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JbDubs' Facebook music page can be found here.

Catching up with Prince Poppycock

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[Editor's note] You may remember my outrage last year over the winner of America's Got Talent. It was clear to the hearing and sighted people of the world that Prince Poppycock was robbed of the title. But, bygones.

Lyndsey Parker of Reality Rocks writes:

The fact that so many American viewers picked up the phone for a foppish fringe-dweller like Poppycock was an encouraging sign in this "It Gets Better" age, and I certainly believe his platform shoes kicked opened some doors for reality television performers, and singers in general, who desire and aspire to stray from the norm.

I finally got a chance to talk at length with His Royal Awesomeness backstage after his recent headlining show at the Grand Lucayan resort in the Bahamas, an exotic setting that of course provided the glamour factor that any Poppycock interview so obviously warrants.

There, resplendently clad in his Poppycockian resort-wear of midriff-baring gold lederhosen, the Prince reflected on his uniquely b…

Pick Me Up of the Day

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Shane Simpson as featured on Soul Artist.

Lonely bros get an app

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Gawker asks you to consider the state of the pitiful American Man: beset on all sides by Spanx and fancy shampoo, tricked into doing crunches and grooming eyebrows, bereft of any healthy masculine role models. Gone is the American Man; in his place, the American Bro. And he is desperate to commune with his own kind.

Enter Bromance.

The iPhone App that connects you to other guys nearby with the same likes/interests as you. Find yourself a workout buddy and get in shape. Organize some Ultimate Frisbee action with other guys around you. Want to meet up and play a game of hoops? Bored on a Friday night and want to grab a beer? Perhaps you want to organize a lan party with like-minded gamers?! Bromance. The location-based network for dudes that do.

Shunned ginger seal now the centre of attention at Russian zoo

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Here's a lovely update on an old story: Things are looking up for the little ginger-coloured seal pup whose fate touched the world after being rejected by the rest of its sleek black family.

Left as an outcast, the vulnerable creature was found huddling under a pile of logs on Tyuleniy Island in the far east of Russia.

Photographer Anatoly Strakhov, 61, took heartbreaking pictures of the world's loneliest seal, which would have been unable to survive in the wild.

Two months on and Russians have taken the rare albino seal - who turns out to be female - to their hearts.

Named Nafanya - after a lookalike Soviet cartoon character - the seal was given VIP treatment and has now moved into a plush new home at the country's leading aqauarium. Nafanya was taken on a 7,890-mile odyssey to the Russian mainland and then by special plane to Adler, near Sochi on the Black Sea coast, where she is rapidly becoming a star attraction.

Yulia Frolova, head of the Akvatoria dolphinarium - Nafanya&…

Kylie Minogue releases Aphrodite tour on Blu-ray

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Kylie Minogue is releasing Aphrodite - Les Folies, filmed live at London’s O2 Arena last April, on CD, DVD, Blu-ray today.

The tour was Kylie’s most ambitious and spectacular to date. You may recall that I heaped a few words of praise on it. With costumes created exclusively for Kylie by Dolce & Gabbana, the stage show followed an enchanting Greek mythology theme, and featured an astonishing water finale.

The footage was filmed over 2 nights at London’s O2 Arena, and is directed by William Baker and Marcus Viner. All formats feature an exclusive tour documentary.

More on the Blu-ray specs can be read at the music page of Attitude. And the Blu-ray can be purchased here.

Adele releases Albert Hall live concert on Blu-ray

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Adele Live At The Royal Albert Hall was recorded on September 22 at the height of what has been an amazing year for Adele.

Available on DVD and Blu-ray, Live At The Royal Albert Hall features the full 90 minute concert performance, plus special behind the scenes footage shot throughout the day leading up to the concert.

The package also includes an exclusive live CD of the entire show. This is the first time all of Adele's hits and best loved songs will be on one CD plus her stunning covers of Bonnie Raitt's "If I Can't Make You Love Me" and The Steeldrivers "If It Hadn't Been For Love"

Until her return to the live stage, we'll have to make due with the Blu-ray, which you can purchase it here.

New Amy Winehouse album of unreleased music to be released

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A posthumous collection of previously unreleased tracks, alternate versions of existing classics, as well as a couple of brand new Amy Winehouse compositions is being released.

Following her tragic passing, some of the producers and musicians who worked closely with Amy Winehouse, among them Mark Ronson and Salaam Remi, spent time listening over the many recordings that Amy had made, before, during, and after the release of Frank and Back To Black.

It was said by all who worked with Amy that she never sang or played a song the same way twice. It quickly became apparent to Salaam and Mark that they had a collection of songs that deserved to be heard, a collection of songs that were a fitting treatment to Amy the artist and, as importantly, Amy the friend.

Lioness: Hidden Treasures will be released December 5th.

Adam Lambert addresses gay marriage on new album

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Adam Lambert offers some insight into his upcoming dance-oriented album Trespassing in a new Rolling Stone interview.

This year, Lambert assembled hitmakers including Pharrell Williams, Dr. Luke and "Teenage Dream" co-writer Bonnie McKee to replace his 2009 debut's glam pop with a club-ready sound inspired by classic disco, Nineties electronica and Skrillex-y dubstep. He even got Chic's Nile Rodgers to play on "Shady," a sexy cut that Lambert describes as "Nine Inch Nails meets Saturday Night Fever."

"There's party music, sex music, fucked-up-relationship S&M music," Lambert says. "But every song explores something real."

Realest of all is "Outlaws of Love" – a smoldering serenade about gay marriage. "I'd never considered marriage before," says Lambert, who's dating Sauli Koskinen, a Finnish reality-TV personality. "But now that I am, I can't do it."

Adam Lambert is also set to dis…

British boy band strips for Attitude

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Towleroad reports: Members of the British boy band JLS stripped down for the December issue of Attitude magazine. The foursome were runners up on the fifth season of the UK's X-Factor but have yet to chart in the US.

A behind the scene of the photoshoot can be seen here.

A sign of the times

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Photo caption: Jobs for Justice and Occupy DC teamed up yesterday for a march to the new MLK memorial.

Occupy Wall Street: update

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--> Occupy LA asking court to stop eviction:



--> Occupy Ourselves: Deepak Chopra explains:There could be an opening for change at a level higher than politics. The American public is confused and conflicted right now. When individuals are in that state, the answer is self-awareness. A therapist asks simple, relevant questions. Why are you angry? How well has your anger worked for you? Do you have negative feelings toward those you love? What every American needs right now is to occupy himself or herself, which means honestly facing the conflicts roiling inside and finding a way to heal them. As long as voters complain about Washington's inability to compromise while in the next breath supporting candidates who are rigidly tied to an ideology, conflict will continue because it exists inside the voter, first and foremost.

President Obama has been a beacon of reasonableness, and his call for a balanced approach to the deficit, along with almost all his other proposals, carries th…

Alcatraz prison begins restoration

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Newly discovered pits add to Stonehenge mystery

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Researchers say they've found two pits to the east and west of Stonehenge that may have played a role in an ancient midsummer ceremony. The discovery suggests that the 5,000-year-old circle of stones we see today may represent just a few of the pieces in a larger geographical, astronomical and cultural puzzle.

The previously undetected pits could provide clues for solving the puzzle.

"These exciting finds indicate that even though Stonehenge was ultimately the most important monument in the landscape, it may at times not have been the only, or most important ritual focus, and the area of Stonehenge may have become significant as a sacred site at a much earlier date," Vince Gaffney, an archaeology professor at the University of Birmingham, said in a news release issued over the weekend.

The pits, which measure about 16 feet wide and at least 3 feet deep, have been covered over for centuries and can't easily be spotted on the ground. But they showed up in a survey that wa…

Obama administration moves to block AT&T merger

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The FCC’s move against AT&T Inc.’s $39 billion purchase of a smaller rival may signal tougher enforcement of corporate mergers by the Obama administration.

AT&T withdrew its application yesterday from the Federal Communications Commission after agency Chairman Julius Genachowski on Nov. 22 asked fellow commissioners to send the proposed purchase of T-Mobile USA Inc. to a hearing, signaling an attempt to block the deal. The Justice Department already has sued to block the deal as anticompetitive, with a U.S. district court trial set to commence in February.

The twin actions on the merger follow the Justice Department’s success in preventing H&R Block Inc. from a deal that would have combined the second- and third-largest providers of tax preparation software. The AT&T transaction would combine the second- and fourth-largest U.S. wireless companies.

“The Obama administration has gotten much more aggressive in antitrust than the Bush administration was,” Jeffrey Jacobovitz, …

American Airlines files for bankruptcy protection

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American Airlines' parent company is seeking Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as it seeks to unload massive debt built up by years of accelerating jet fuel prices and labor struggles.

The nation's third largest airline also said today that its CEO Gerard Arpey will step down. He's being replaced by Thomas Horton, currently the company's president.

Fort Worth-based AMR Corp., along with its regional affiliate AMR Eagle Holding Corp., said today that they filed voluntary petitions to reorganize.

American says it sought protection to reduce its costs and debt to remain competitive. The airline will continue normal flight operations during the reorganization.

American is the only U.S. legacy airline that hasn't filed for bankruptcy protection. The last major airline to file for bankruptcy protection was Delta in 2005.

American says labor-contract rules force it to spend at least $600 million more than other airlines. That's partly a result of AMR avoiding bankruptcy las…

Barney Frank announces retirement from Congress

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Pick Me Up of the Day

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Josh Pence as featured on Homotography.

Beyoncé
"Dance For You"

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The Funnies
Holiday Shopping Edition

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Marine Corps leader “pleased” with DADT repeal process

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The Advocate reports: Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos, who once testified against the end of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, said that he is “very pleased” with how repeal has proceeded in the past two months.

Amos, the highest-ranking Marine Corps officer, made the comments in an interview with the Associated Press during a weeklong trip that included stops in Afghanistan. He praised the smooth way U.S. troops across the world have adapted since the policy ended in September.

According to the AP, Amos was not asked about repeal at more than a dozen town-hall style meetings with Marines during his latest trip. Only once, in Bahrain on Sunday, did a Marine ask whether Amos planned to change the policy of allowing local commanders to determine how to handle complaints about negative “homosexual remarks or actions,” and Amos said no.

Prior to repeal, Amos testified before Congress last December and said that allowing gay Marines to serve openly could held “strong potential for d…

Gay Archie character gets married in January issue

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The highly-anticipated gay wedding issue of Archie Comics has finally been revealed.

The January issue's cover illustration shows Kevin Keller, Riverdale's first openly gay character who is also an active U.S. military officer, tying the knot with his African-American partner, Clay Walker. ComicsAlliance reported in October that the story of the couple's meeting, said to take place in a military hospital, "obviously deals with ['Don't Ask, Don't Tell'] but it doesn't spell it out for the reader," and may be revealed in flashback, according to Archie Comics CEO Jon Goldwater.

When the miniseries was announced in 2010, author Dan Parent told the Associated Press, "The world of Riverdale has to reflect contemporary culture and to show it is an accepting, diverse place. And that's why Kevin is important, to show that everybody is welcome in this all-American town we've embraced for over 70 years." Parent was nominated for a GLAAD M…

It's time for gay marriage equality in Australia

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GetUp! in Australia released a commercial last week from the perspective of one half of a gay couple in love. It builds to the big moment that they want legalized — a proposal to get married.

Polls in Australia show support for marriage equality has increased to almost two-thirds of voters. But Prime Minister Julia Gillard remains opposed, arguing that “the institution of marriage has come to have a particular meaning and standing in our culture and nation and that should continue unchanged.”

In the commercial, the couple seems like any other that might fit that “meaning,” except for their gender. Groups such as The Third Way in Washington have argued based on new research that it’s a message of commitment like this one — and not about benefits or rights — that will be most effective with voters.

(Via the Advocate)

Chaz Bono proposes to girlfriend on Being Chaz

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In happy news: Chaz Bono proposed to his girlriend Jennifer Elia atop Seattle's Space Needle.

In Being Chaz (the follow-up to the Emmy-nominated documentary Becoming Chaz which highlighted Bono's transition from female to male), viewers witnessned the intimate moment between the couple as Bono, 42, gave her an engagement ring in Seattle.

"It's gorgeous. Thank you so much," Elia says of the sparkler. "It's stunning. It's huge."

The one-hour special, which aired yesterday on OWN, documents their good times and their bad times, like when Bono faced backlash for being the first transgender contestant to compete on Dancing With the Stars.

More on this story, including video of the proposal, can be found at People.

Harvey Milk remembered 33 years later with march

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"...Let that bullet also destroy every closet door in the country."

Yesterday was the 33rd anniversary of the assassinations of Harvey Milk and George Moscone. You can listen to that "Hope" speech, which resonates as powerfully now as ever, here.

A Harvey Milk Memorial and Candlelight March took place in the Castro last night where former Milk intern Cleve Jones offered some inpiring words to the marchers and activists. Videographer Sean Chapin captured it all in a touching montage. See below:

Next year, it looks like Harvey will be getting a street named after him.

(Via Towleroad)

The real meaning of gay

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These straight British lads have been so conditioned to use the word "gay" as a substitute for "lame" or "stupid" they don't even understand when one of their best friends tries to come out to them.

"That's So Gay" is a short clip made by staff and students from the University of Liverpool which was based on an original idea from the staff LGBT Network.

(Via Towleroad)

Lady Gaga special nabs good ratings for ABC

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ArtsBeat reports: Based on the early Nielsen ratings Lady Gaga may not become a Thanksgiving mainstay like Charlie Brown, but A Very Gaga Thanksgiving still posted solid numbers on Thursday night for ABC with a total audience of 5.7 million viewers. The 90-minute special, where Gaga performed a handful of songs and showed off some curious wardrobe choices, was ABC’s highest-rated show in that time period — 9:30 p.m. to 11 — in four years.

CBS finished first in prime time over all and a repeat of The Big Bang Theory was the No. 1 program of the night in the 18-to-49-year-old demographic and in total viewers, with 11.2 million. Earlier in the day the audience for NBC’s broadcast of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was down – according to Nielsen’s preliminary overnight estimates – by about 3% compared to last year, when 22.1 million viewers tuned in. [Ed. note: I blame this squarely on Ann Curry!].

Final audience figures were not available on Friday.

--> I didn't watch the Gaga sp…

Pre-Mouse Walt Disney artwork up for sale

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ArtsBeat reports: Long-lost works by Walt Disney are suddenly sprouting like the bits of a chopped-up broom brought magically to life.

An early cartoon drawing by Disney, dating from the early 1920s before Mickey Mouse was a gleam in his eye, will be among the items for sale at a two-day auction in Reno, Nev., The Associated Press reported. The drawing, titled “Fill Up My Can,” depicts a cigar-smoking man in a derby hat and bears the prophetic if not rib-tickling caption, “Develop your sense of humor and it will develop you.” (Fans will also notice that Disney’s autograph hasn’t quite developed its signature flourish.) The drawing was previously owned by Disney’s sister, Ruth, and is expected to sell for between $35,000 and $50,000 at an auction that starts Tuesday at the Atlantic Casino Resort.

On the other side of the Atlantic, an independent British film library says it has found one of the earliest animated shorts to feature Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, a Mickey-like prototype created b…

Review: The Muppets

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[Editor's note] Anyone who knows me well knows that I'm not easily impressed. Whether it's food, fellas, or films-- I tend to expect more than most. Call it a penchant for snobbery or an affinity for the finer things in life. Either way I just happen to know what I like. This being my modusoperandi, you can imagine how trepidatiously I approach revamps of established franchises of my childhood.

Enter The Muppets, by way of Jason Segel.

Admittedly, when I first heard Mr. Segel was going to spearhead the Muppet return (see Norma Desmond's policy on comebacks), I was a little apprehensive. When I heard that they were creating a new Muppet just for the film, I was scared. And when I heard it was going to have musical numbers, I cringed at the thought of Jason Segel singing. But then I heard that Amy Adams was going to co-star and all was put right in the world. Having seen The Muppets on Thanksgiving night I can confidently say that Segel and Adams did well by the 'ol Mu…

The Muppets make a strong debut in theaters

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EW reports: As expected, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn–Part 1 led the box office once again over the Thanksgiving weekend, but Disney’s The Muppets reboot more than held its own in second place.

Disney’s $40 million reboot The Muppets debuted in second place with a strong $42.3 million. The friendly felt puppets laughed up $29.5 million over the regular three-day weekend. Audiences skewed slightly older than those at typical kids’ movies, as only 35% of viewers were under the age of 18, but then the Muppets were never meant to be solely kiddie fare.

With a straight “A” CinemaScore grade and broad appeal with all ages, The Muppets may climb to a $100+ million cume in the coming weeks. Wherever The Muppets finishes though, it has already proven more successful than the last Muppets movies to hit theaters, Muppets from Space, which only earned $16.6 million in 1999.

In off-beat related news: "Mahna Mahna" came from a porn film.

UPDATE: The film is already the second biggest gros…

Weekend box office

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Weekend Box Office:

#1 The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 ($42M)
#2 The Muppets ($29.5M)
#3 Happy Feet Two ($13.4M)
#4 Arthur Christmas ($12.7M)
#5 Hugo ($11.3M)

Jerry Curl wishes you all a Happy Thanksgiving

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[Editor's note] We're closing up shop, kids. Have a happy, safe, and fulfilling time with friends and family. Remember: Thanksgiving is a word of action. Cheers!

Winter season swim suits

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--> My photographer pal Lesdyan Cordovi sent this video along of his latest foray into the world of male swim suits. They're cute but the boys are cuter.

Thanks Mr. Cordovi.

Pick Me Up of the Day

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Dudu Correa as featured on Made in Brazil.

Darren Criss suits up for Broadway

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Darren Criss is set to take over for Daniel Radcliffe in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying in January, and promo materials are starting to flow. Criss will have the lead role from January 3rd – 22nd.

(Via Hypable)

Flo Rida
"Good Feeling"

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Dancing With the Stars hands out the mirror ball trophy

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The Marquee Blog reports: When ABC announced the celebrity lineup for this season's Dancing With the Stars, few could have predicted that J.R. Martinez would have made it past the first few weeks, let alone the finals.

After all, the actor and Iraq war veteran didn't have the name recognition that many of his fellow competitors had.

But Martinez quickly won over the viewers and judges with his optimistic attitude, energetic performances and overall passion for the competition. It was those qualities and more that gave Martinez the title of Dancing With the Stars champion.

Martinez beat out reality star Rob Kardashian and talk show host Ricki Lake in the 13th season finale of the popular ABC show. For Martinez, who suffered severe burns to more than 40 percent of his body while on duty in Iraq back in 2003, the victory showed that, if you put your mind to it, anything is possible.

"In Iraq, what happened to me was something that I didn't want, I didn't predict," M…

A complete guide to The Muppets

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It's time to play the music, it's time to light the lights...



--> The long-awaited return of the Muppets is finally upon us! Their new big screen film-- the first in six years-- is aptly titled The Muppets and it hits theaters today. Jason Segal, Amy Adams and Walter (the newest addition to the Muppet brood) jump into the fray with Kermit and the gang for a new adventure.

--> From the New York Times review:
And so you have The Muppets, Disney’s endearing, silly, smiley-faced movie directed by James Bobin (Flight of the Conchords, Da Ali G Show) and arriving on a marketing tsunami. The happy news is that it has been done just about right, which means conceptually and technologically left alone.

These are the same old, adorable Muppets, as sweetly innocent and likable as ever. Winking at itself, the movie is casually, amusingly self-reflexive. In one joke Kermit the Frog considers telephoning President Carter. “The Muppets” makes no attempt to match the wisecracking hipne…