Sunday, October 28, 2007

i know, i know, but let me try to recap...(ANTM)

who else is gone?

Janet: It's the curse of the red-heads, I tell you! They dyed her hair black during make-overs, but the curse couldn't be stopped. When they wouldn't stop calling her "Liza Minnelli" I knew she didn't have a chance. But Janet is a good sport, and she has a genuine love of the industry. Perhaps she will find herself behind the scenes instead of on the runway. Either way, the industry should welcome her passion.

Victoria: Good riddance to cerebral rubbish! I hate to have called it, but let's face it, the really smart girls can't get over themselves long enough to win this competition. I'm not stating it as fact, but the research of previous cycles supports this theory. Victoria was well aware of this, yet she found herself on that academic high-horse - calling the modeling world ridiculous or ludicrous (or some other PSAT word). When she was eliminated, she kicked her shoes off before she even left the judging room. We heard her give thanks for no more heels and make-up, that she could return to sweats and sneakers and get back to the library. But what if Victoria returns to gibes and jeers for having entered such a competition? That's what the academics would call "irony".

In attempts to atone for my slacking, I have a new approach for last weeks episode. A friend/coworker of mine also watches ANTM, and here's our virtual banter regarding last week's episode:

Soo, did you watch "TYRA MAAAIL!!" last night? Seriously, do they ALWAYS have to yell it in unison? Is it in their contracts? I missed the first 20 minutes or so, but saw the rest. What the--?!

yeah, girl. i've been slacking on my updates, but i haven't missed an episode. i don't know what's up with all that models-in-stereo unison-talk either ("Looove Tyra"). the girls were split up into teams of 3, and they had to write and perform a 30 second PSA for the winning group (Heather, Jenah and Ebony, I think) received $500 gift baskets from Carol's Daughter. those 3 had their names put into a basket, and the name that was pulled got the chance to do a photo shoot for Carol's Daughter - art directed by Mary J. Blige. Heather's name was pulled, and she was super geeked-up and excited. She met Mary and did some really beautiful shots. she used the opportunity to practice her front-on angles. (sure paid off at panel!) out of nowhere, Ebony tells the girls that she wants to go home. "what the--?!" my sentiments exactly, but you saw how they played her, right - showing her audition video at the end of the episode? oooo! i bet she feel burned!

I'm glad it wasn't just me! I thought that audition video at the end was pretty spiteful on Tyra's part (as well as that music - give me a break). What if the child really did recognized that modeling was in fact not her passion? I don't think she was disrespectful or took any of the process as a joke. I think it takes a big person to step up and admit that something they thought was good for them turned out to be the opposite. The thing she hates most in the WORLD is a quitter? Interesting... Don't get me wrong, I actually would have like to see Ebony stick it out seeing how she lost that nasty attitude from the first episode, and I would have liked for her to take the criticism and turn it around, but that video and the quitter remark were a tad too much for moi. Come on, Ambreal!!! I soooo hope she turns it around next week and someone else goes home. She seems like such a nice young woman.

And um, Heather is going to win. Yeah, the child takes beautiful pictures, period.

and we all saw the way ebony was crying. she probably felt worse about letting tyra down than going home! but i am glad she spoke up because ambreal wants to be there sooo badly. i think what upset tyra the most was she credits herself with being a great judge of character and very "in-tune". here she had two girls in front of her - one who wanted it so badly and one who didn't want it anymore - and she couldn't tell the difference! that's what made tyra so mad. i know ambreal is grateful that ebony spoke up, though! and how about jersey-girl, lisa? she had better step it up because she's on the chopping block next week... and heather is definitely the one to beat right now. sarah's face is beautiful, so she could be a close second (and she does appear to have lost weight, doesn't she? i don't know if nigel had to put her on blast like that). bianca's steadily stepping her game up, so she may be in the top 3. jenah's photos have been consistently good, but she's not striking the way heather is. saleisha's photo was beautiful last night, but she has not been consistent. is it just me, or are they playing up saleisha like antm's own little version of rihanna? i mean, car parts? rihanna's "Shut Up and Drive" video, anyone?

LOL! Rihanna! Yep, I definitely think the judges are pulling for Saliesha. Bianca is gaining on them and Nigel straight put Sarah on blast!


Know what?
I think you just helped me write my blog for last night's episode. If it's alright with you, I would like to copy and paste our banter. This dialogue is so much better than talking to...say...myself. ;)

ella...ella... eh,eh,eh...

You did not say "ella"!

Sure, do your thing! :-)

Guess I don't have to tell you who went home =)

Monday, October 08, 2007

Tight Ropes and Haute Hopes...(ANTM)

I hate that this re-cap is sooo late, but let’s make the best of it shall we?

At the house, the ladies seemed to have gotten over themselves and were befriending Heather. They dressed her and did her make-up. It was cute the way they were connecting, except Bianca, the redheaded grinch from Queens, separated herself and berated the whole activity. Bianca seems to be making her rounds, slowly but surely, through every contestant. This week, she had words with Saleisha. [Basically] Bianca hates the fact that Saleisha has prior modeling experience; Saleisha says [sincerely trying to be encouraging, but still coming across hoity-toity] that the girls should not be intimidated, but that this should make them want to work harder… yadda, yadda, yadda, name calling and yelling…blah, blah, blah, in each other’s faces…end scene.

This week (well, last week by now), the ladies jumped right into the world of modeling and began scaling their way to the top. First, they had runway coaching from Miss Jay (whose entertainment factor increases every episode, I must say). They learned to walk in restricted attire by practicing in straight jackets. Of course they all needed work. The only thing funnier than watching them walk in straightjackets was seeing Miss Jay leave the room while everyone was still tied up. (I think to myself, “What if no one helped the girls out of their jackets? That would be hilarious!” But I digress….) To show what they learned from Miss Jay, the ladies were given a runway challenge where they had to model very complex gowns by designer Colleen Quinn (whose name Roy Campbell butchered at every turn! It’s a short ‘o’ man! He nearly called her colon!). Saleisha won the challenge, and she will accompany Quinn to debut the line in Paris. Oh! Bianca, ma petite chienne! Tu es tres furieux, no?

At the photo shoot, the girls had to wear couture gowns and harnesses, as they modeled while hanging in the air and using the biggest prop ever – a rock climbing simulation wall (there’s probably a more appropriate name for the structure, but this post is about ANTM not L.L.Bean). Jenah rocked it out (no pun intended) because she’s been climbing for years and spent two of those years as an instructor (wow, you think you know a person…). The other photos that really stood out were Ambreal - she took a beautiful photo; Saleisha – her upside down pose; Ebony and Lisa – legs for days, but no facial interest to speak of; Janet – she did the best in displaying the gown; Heather – she’s just gorgeous, and her gaze was so intense! Tyra said she liked Bianca’s photo, but really I think she was lying. None of the other judges had anything nice to say, and Miss Hardcore Brooklyn was on the verge of a brake down. So she had to say something positive, but c’mon Tyra, you didn’t like it that much either, did you?

Ebony’s prophecy did not fulfill itself, as she was in the bottom 3, not the bottom two (as she expected). Bianca and Kimberly were the final two on the chopping block, and while it was surely a humbling experience for the devilish diva – it was ultimately Kimberly who fell from grace and was eliminated.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Last-Minute Lucy...(or) This is What Happens...

Today I have to submit the material I'll be reading at a coffee house next week. I waited, and waited, and waited to prepare - figuring at the very least I could go back to older things if I didn't have the chance to write new ones. Well, I went back, and, besides a little trip down memory lane, I found squat. Zip, zero, zilch,nada, nein... (and I didn't find anything either). So now I have to write something! And I'm feeling a little like Ed Norton in 25th Hour right before he does that awesome monologue in the men's room mirror. I refuse to call the coordinator and say, "I know I said I wanted to participate, but I was temporarily insane. I've come to my senses now, so thank you but nevermind. Okay, bye!" The truth is I want to do it; another truth is I'm a little disturbed that so much of what I've written is no longer relevant to me now, but that's another post for another day - that I'll probably put off writing. Finally, I thought to myself, "Okay, you want to do well, but this isn't life or death. And we both know that the art of speaking poetry is very much in the presentation. So write what's true to you right now." Okay, so I wasn't that eloquent, but looking back I gather that's what my subconscious must have been saying to me just before I was able to write something down. Here's what I came up with:

“Poems Never Come”

Poems never come when you want them.
Like when you happen to wake up early
on a Saturday morning, while the world is quiet
and your obligations are still sleeping.
They don’t show up when you try to impress
that cute guy, telling him, “Yes. I’m a poet.”
and he says, “Really? Recite something.”
In fact, after your first love and adolescent angst,
some poems don’t come around for ages.
And they definitely don’t show up when you have
a keyboard within reach or pen and paper in hand—
ready for them—
waiting and knowing
today is the day I will be brilliant.

Poems arrive at the pinnacle of inopportunity—
Like when you’re going to your car or bus stop
with two hands full of groceries and no scribe in sight.
They show up while you’re walking the dog,
who you can tell the poem to, but
(let’s face it) he won’t repeat it to you
when you get home, so you can write it down.
They pop up in the middle of a lecture you can’t leave,
or a one-sided conversation you can’t get out of,
so you’ve resorted to entertaining yourself.
Poems play peek-a-boo,
flashing the last line,
giving you a glimpse of a theme,
then when you sit down to put it all together…
gone – back into hiding.
The worst time is when Poems show up in your sleep,
all vibrant and on parade.
And if a picture is worth a thousand words,
then every time we wake from dreaming,
gone is another book no one will ever get to read.

God’s speed, Poems, as you fly from me…
And I don’t know when you’ll return,
but I will wait for you forever.

“Five Minutes”

I’ve got five minutes to write this poem.
Can’t handwrite it – my penmanship is awful.
Can’t type it – I’ll need four and a half minutes
just to find the home row keys.
Please, Something, come. Muse, if you’re listening
I could really use some help right now.
Give me the words to say and show me how
to arrange them in a way that will still make sense
when I reread it the second time around.
What’s it called? Timeless and universal,
but I’m on the clock so I’ll settle for relevant
and slightly witty. No time to be picky – beggars
can’t be choosers.
I’ve got five minutes to write this poem,
and all the ideas in my mind are too common or too private,
too politically incorrect (though that poem would be a riot),
too simple, too complex, too much about myself,
too soft, too loud, too much like a poem
I’ve heard somewhere else.
What’s the delay?
How can someone who’s always talking really have nothing to say?
Maybe that’s just it? With spoken words, they’re said; they’re heard;
they float up through the world and I’m done with it.
But it’s a lot easier to change my mind than change my print.
So how can I get it done, when by the time I’ve told my truth
I’ve discovered another one?
I’ve got five minutes to write this poem.
And if it doesn’t come quick,
I may have to cut the open mic and call in sick.
The symptoms?
My nouns are weighted down; my verbs keep running;
my prepositions are flaring up, and I’m seeing adjectives everywhere I look—
not to mention I’ve got commas coming out all over the place.
It’s too late now to save face
because I had five minutes to write this poem,
And I’ve got nothing.

They're not mind-shattering or life-altering pieces. Hell, they may not even be all that thought-provoking, but they entertain me. And I hope they entertain you too.

"...And I have this litany of things they can do. And the first one, of course, is to write -- every day, no excuses. It's so easy to make excuses. Even professional writers have days when they'd rather clean the toilet than do the writing."
- Octavia Butler