Author Archives: majorterata

This Week in Jerk-ville

Mr. Affirmative Action The Supreme Court voted 6 to 2 to uphold a ban on using affirmative action to make college admission decisions in Michigan. The ruling sets in motion the likely spread of AA bans in other states. Whether … Continue reading

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The 10 Things I Hate About “The Ten Commandments”

Not the tablets – the movie. As with “It’s a Wonderful Life” around Christmas and “Planes, Trains and Automobiles” around Thanksgiving, Cecil B. DeMille’s bloated epic “The Ten Commandments” appears perennially like a stinky weed every Passover season (although most … Continue reading

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The 5 Stages of “Global Warming” Doubt

There’s a “movie-inside-a-movie” scene in Bob Fosse’s “All That Jazz” where a stand-up comic riffs on Elizabeth Kubler-Ross’s five stages of death. He notes that Kubler-Ross came up with the five stages – denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance – … Continue reading

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Drag Queens, Rent Boys, Pick Pockets, Junkies, Rockstars and Punks

Leee Black Childers, along with Bob Gruen, Roberta Bayley and Mick Rock was one of pre-eminent photographers capturing the NYC rock n roll underground – although Childers was just as likely to appear in a photo as to snap it. … Continue reading

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The Long Life of a Short Man

Mickey Rooney, who died the other day at age 93, spent nearly all of his life in show business, having begun performing in his parents’ Vaudeville act at the precocious age of 17 months. Mickey Rooney had more lifetime experience … Continue reading

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Stubby Ears and Blood Disorders: Publisher’s Gold

Although the barriers to publishing books have fallen precipitously over the past several years with the introduction of the Amazon Kindle ecosystem and similar services from Barnes & Noble, SONY, et.al., the largest challenges for most authors remain intact, namely … Continue reading

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A Million Bucks Says I’m Against Gambling

First we had the righteous clerics, then came the blustery Donald Trump, and now making noises is the addled Sheldon Adelson. What do they have in common? They all hate gambling – at least the kind that interferes with their … Continue reading

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Baselworld – Time of Your Life

Baselworld Watch and Jewelry Show opens this week in Switzerland, and sadly I am not there. I love watches. The combination of artistry and mechanical precision that results in a world-class time-piece is something to admire – and pay for … Continue reading

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Death of a Hate Salesman

The 2007 documentary “The Most Hated Family in America” presented by Louis Theroux is not about the Kardashians, the Koch Brothers, the Clintons or Bushes, but rather a sociopathic clan of homophobes established by recently deceased Fred Phelps. Phelps, making … Continue reading

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The Legacy of Peter Callander

By some calculations the total number of unique five minute songs is 1.7 trillion, of which perhaps five million have been recorded. Given this vast universe of musical combinatorics, it’s understandable that thousands of horrible songs would have been pressed … Continue reading

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19 Screenwriters for Every Screenwriter

You often hear people complain about the sorry state of movies from Hollywood, an industry that is ever more dependent on revenue from a collection of bloated action blockbusters, reliable if not imaginative sequels to previously successful films, and derivative … Continue reading

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Got Egg?

One of the lesser-noticed achievements at the Academy Awards ceremony was the emergence of just the twelfth member of the EGOT club – people who have won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony. This year Robert Lopez picked up an … Continue reading

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Is Obsession a Pre-existing Condition?

Every weekend the President of the United States delivers a radio address ostensibly to inform the nation, although I suspect the majority of those tuning in are Beltway insiders and policy wonks. The practice, which was popularized by Franklin Roosevelt … Continue reading

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Oscar Prediction Tally

My predictions for the 2014 Academy Awards were fairly accurate given the breadth and strength of the nominees (and the often unpredictable mood of voting members.) Of the major awards, I predicted Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best … Continue reading

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Sh*t My Phony Goldman Sachs Trader Says

In 2009, a small-time comedian named Justin Halpern started a Twitter feed called @shitmydadsays featuring verbatim posts of his father’s coarse observations, crude advice and utterances of suburban wisdom. For every clever quote (“That woman was sexy. . . . … Continue reading

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Obligatory Oscar Outlook

Like millions of others I have ideas on who and what will win Oscars at the upcoming Academy Awards ceremony on March 2. Today (Feb 26) I’ve documented my picks for every category and will revisit them in the coming … Continue reading

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My Way or the Arizona Highway

A couple of gay dudes wanted to get married in the sovereign state of Washington about a year ago, a process that is legal there. In between lining up a caterer, hiring a limo and picking out invitation stationery, the … Continue reading

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50 Years a Slave to Vietnam

Fiftieth anniversaries of historic events tend to revive memories of those old enough to recall them, as well as stoking interest in those who may have no inkling of their importance. Last year’s anniversary of JFK’s assassination was met by … Continue reading

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The Dead Pool

Somewhere near the middle of the Academy Awards ceremony the organizers air a segment called “In Memoriam” in which a few dozen select members who have died in the previous 12 months are featured in a montage of film clips … Continue reading

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(Speaker of the) House Rules

A couple days ago the 535-member Vaudeville troupe known as “Congress” voted to raise the debt ceiling of the United States – a ridiculous process not endured by any other nation in the world except Denmark which has an almost … Continue reading

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