Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Architecture Wednesday: Haddock House

Y’all know I loves me some Frank Lloyd Wright homes …FLW designs … FLW-inspired designs …and so it’s really no surprise that I am in love with Haddock House in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

The original design Haddock House was conceptualized, sketched, and planned by FLW who created it as a one-of-a-kind customized masterpiece for a northern Wisconsin school teacher and friend in 1938.

Sadly, though, the house was never actually built before Wright passed away. But, forty years after Wright designed the house, a University of Michigan professor, Frederick Haddock, purchased the design from FLW’s widow. He then partnered with Taliesin Associated Architects, founded by Wright himself to manage his legacy, to bring the house to life.

With the help of Taliesin, Haddock chose a 10-acre plot of meadows and wooded hills that sloped down toward Honey Creek as the spot for his home. It was not only the site Haddock wanted, but it also was the kind of site that FLW’s original design was set in.

Haddock House is a stunning structure with unending visual appeal and artistic angles and texture. It was designed in the style of Wright’s classic Usonian homes, known for their efficient living and the way they were built specifically to blend in with their natural surroundings.

Haddock House is built with slanting layers of wood, panels of shining glazed glass, and high ceilings intended to increase feelings of spaciousness that belie the actual square footage. Personal spaces—bedrooms and bathrooms—are designed to be as cozy and warm as possible, featuring natural woods and materials that blend in with the house’s wooded surroundings. And, as is the case with most FLW homes, there are built-in details like lamps and art pieces that continue the wood-grained theme.

In contrast to all that wood inside, are all the woods and green spaces outside, including a landscape design that nods toward traditional Japanese gardens.

Once the house was finished, Haddock put it up for sale, but included FLW’s original drawings and blueprints, as well as letters of authentication from Taliesen Associated Architects making Haddock House not just a Frank Lloyd Wright design, but a full-realized, pristinely completed one-of-a-kind FLW masterpiece.


Mt Two Cents: Terrorism

We need to get our words right.

In the wake of that mass hooting at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, last week we need to learn our words: terrorist.

See, I’ve noticed that when a brown man takes out an assault weapon and shoots up an office in San Bernardino, or a couple of brown men open fire at the offices of the French satirical weekly newspaper Charlie Hebdo, they are called terrorists.

But when a white man murders fifty people in New Zealand, or a white man slaughters nine black people in a church in Charleston … or a white man shoots at concert goers, or movie goers or shoppers in a mall or students at school, when white people slaughter dozens they are called in the press, gunmen.

They are not. They are terrorists.

Slaughtering people is terror. People gathering to worship, or dance, or to listen to music, and who are murdered for no apparent reason other than hatred are victims of terror, no matter what the skin color is on the hand that pulls the trigger.

And we need to hold the press accountable; we need to remind the media that terrorism isn’t committed solely by brown-skinned people, but that most of the terror attacks, at least in this country lately, have been committed by white men.

Now, that doesn’t mean all white men are terrorists, but it does mean we need to broaden our scope and our language as to what makes a person a terrorist.

It isn’t who you shoot, it’s that you shoot.

It isn’t where you shoot, it’s that you shoot.

It isn’t the color of your skin, it’s that you think you have the right to take human life because you hate people.

It’s hate; and it’s hate speech. So maybe we need to start by combating hate speech, and that’s not so hard to do. When someone says something within earshot that is hateful, say something; call them out on their hate, their racism; shine a light on it. Cockroaches and racists run from the light.

But what do we do when the hate speech is coming from positions of power?

We have a president who has said that Muslims are terrorists, that Muslims hate “us,” that Muslims cheered in New Jersey on 9/11 as the towers came down. We have a president who has said that some white supremacists are “nice people,” even as Heather Heyer was being laid to rest after Charlottesville.

There are good people on both sides, he said, when people shouted death to Jews.

And, both men responsible for the mosque shootings in Quebec and Christchurch actually credited an American president for his views on Muslims. Those two men in opposite corners of the world, singled out the president, and his views, his opinions, his statements, as part of the reason why they opened fire and slaughtered innocent people.

That’s also terrorism.

Our president, while he may not carry a gun, and may not actually say the words, ‘Go out and kill,’ suggests that people are coming for us, to take our lives, our jobs, our loved ones, our country, and when a terrorist strikes, he has no anger toward the terrorist who echoes his white supremacist leanings, in fact he almost has to be coerced to even condemn the violence.

And then his words of sorrow weren’t for the people murdered, they were for New Zealand, because he couldn’t be bothered to say the word ‘Muslim’ lest he offend his base. In fact, as they were cleaning up the blood in that mosque in Christchurch, he said he didn’t think there was a rise in white supremacy at all, at least not in this country.

He’s forgotten Charlottesville, Quebec, Pittsburgh; he’s forgotten Las Vegas, Charleston, Orlando; he’s forgotten Parkland, Newtown, Christchurch.

He’s forgotten that, while the FBI defines a mass shooting as an incident in which four or more people, not including the suspect, are killed, that there over 20 mass shootings in this country in 2018 … almost two a month. And there have been eight mass shootings in 2019 … and it’s only March. And that doesn’t include shootings where less than four people were murdered.

That’s terrorism, and until we start calling it by its real name, no matter the skin color of the perpetrator, we’ll never find a way to stop it. And that’s the greatest terror of all.

It’s not over ….

Monday, March 18, 2019

Racist Corinne Terrone Is Out Of A Job

Corinne Terrone.

She was, emphasis on was, a clerk at a public school in Connecticut until she resigned because she decided to take her intolerance, her ignorance, her stupidity, her racism, out for a stroll at the Shop Rite store in East Haven.

Corrine Terrone, AKA Racist Robin, resigned after a video surfaced of her spitting at two black people and repeatedly using the N-word.

After Corrine Terrone’s first use of the slur, one man rushes at her, so she pulls out her cell phone to record him. But then she taunts him:
"Put your hands on me, come on!"
Other shoppers held the man back.

Oh yeah, the incident took place in the presence of Corrine Terrone’s children.

Corrine Terrone resigned from the Hamden Public Schools right after a meeting to investigate the incident was scheduled by the school district:
“The language the employee used in the video is in conflict with the values of the Hamden Public School System. Someone who will use that sort of language in any setting, whether public or private, is not someone we want anywhere near our children. The employee is separated from service, and we hope that her children will receive the support they need after witnessing such a traumatic event."
And to that end, the district filed a report with the Connecticut's Department of Children and Families given Corrine Terrone took her bigotry out in front of her children.

And lastly, right about the time Corrine Terrone was spitting on black people and calling them the N-word in a grocery store, _____ was saying he thinks white supremacy is a small problem.

Uh huh.

My Two Cents: California Governor Suspends the Death Penalty

I am staunchly anti-death penalty in every single case.


If murder is wrong, why is state sanctioned murder okay? I mean we don’t punish rapists by raping them, that would be savage, so why murder murderers? I am against it. And not just for ethical reasons, though they alone make me an anti-death penalty proponent, but for financial reasons.

If you sentence a person to death they have years, decades, really, of appeal after appeal, all paid for by We the People. But, sentence them to life, and many times the convicted won’t, or can’t appeal. It’s actually cheaper to sentence someone to life, then death.

I am not just spouting this randomly today, but because last week Democratic California Governor Gavin Newsom suspended the death penalty in his state, saying that it is ineffective and cruel, and that he "will not oversee the execution of any individual." He signed an executive granting reprieves to all 737 Californians awaiting executions—a quarter of the country's death row inmates:
"Our death penalty system has been—by any measure—a failure. The intentional killing of another person is wrong. And as governor, I will not oversee the execution of any individual."
And Newsom did that despite the fact that three years ago, California voters rejected an initiative to end the death penalty and instead voted to speed up executions.

Why, you ask, did he do that? Well, Newsom says, and rightly so, that the death penalty system has discriminated against mentally ill defendants and, especially, people of color, and yet hasn’t made California any safer, and is a waste of taxpayer dollars.

But those aren’t the only reasons, though judicial racism, stricter sentences, harsher punishments, for people of color should be reason alone, but what about the innocent who are jailed, or even put to death?

If even one person is put to death who is innocent, and proven innocent, that’s too many. We the People have murdered an innocent person. That is intolerable.

There are people who believe that the death penalty gives the victim’s families and loved one’s closure, but does it, really? Sticking a needle in the arm of a convicted murderer suddenly erases the pain for the survivors? I don’t think that’s true.

You may ask if, goddess forbid, someone murdered someone I love, Carlos perhaps, would my opinion change. The hard answer is No; putting to death a murderer would not bring Carlos back to me and killing someone would not give me pleasure or closure. I would still be living a life without someone I love and murder won’t ever change that.

And so, I know there are some who have no moral objection to the death penalty, and even some who believe it’s a deterrent, or somehow just, but refusing to care about its racist application, its use on people with mental illness, people with cognitive disabilities is neither just nor moral.

Killing innocent people isn't justice.  And my mind will never change on that.

I remember at the sentencing hearing for Aaron McKinney, who along with Russell Henderson, murdered Matthew Shepard. Henderson pleaded guilty and agreed to testify against McKinney to avoid the death penalty; he was given two consecutive life sentences. 

The jury, having found McKinney guilty of felony murder, began to deliberate on the death penalty, until Mathew Shepard's parents brokered a deal, resulting in McKinney receiving two consecutive life terms without the possibility of parole.

In court, after the deal was struck, Dennis Shepard told McKinney the sentence means:
“You won’t be a symbol. No years of publicity, no chance of commutation, no nothing—just a miserable future and a miserable end. It works for me …. Mr. McKinney, I give you life in the memory of one who no longer lives. May you have a long life, and may you thank Matthew every day for it.”
I think that’s punishment. If Aaron McKinney had been put to death he’d be seen by bigots and homophobes as having died because he believed being gay was wrong, that if a gay man somehow comes on to you, murder is acceptable. But lock Aaron McKinney up, for life, with no chance at all of ever being free, and he will wake up each morning, and go to bed each night, knowing that he’s there because of what he did to Matthew Shepard.

That, as Dennis Shepard said, works for me. And I thank Governor Newsom for standing up against this barbaric misuse of justice.

But that’s just me.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

I Ain't One To Gossip But ...

Just an example of how overboard people go with social media … it seems 90210 star Jennie Garth is getting the shiz from people on social media for not posting photos and memories of Luke Perry following his death.

And even though her Instagram page was silent following Perry’s passing—she did release a statement to the press—sad fans waited for some crumbs. And her next post didn’t stop the haters; see, her first post after Perry’s death was a photo of her three daughters for International Women’s Day and that was too much for those so-called fans. They jumped in and Jennie clapped back:
“Hey everyone … I chose to post a pic of my girls today. Because they are my life. Because today is a day to celebrate all women. It took a lot for me to want to celebrate anything. I thought about it and I know that’s the way my dear friend would have wanted it. His kids were his life. And anyone who knew him knows that and knows he didn’t give a fuck about social media. So please don’t assume or judge or make rude comments.”
Snap. Why don’t we let people mourn the way they choose to mourn, m’kay?
Well, Kathy Griffin is still riding the Woe Is Me train following that nearly two-year-old photo of her with the bloody fake _____ head. And she’s still trying to drag My Husband In My Head, Anderson Cooper, for saying the picture was tasteless.

In a new interview, she talked AC again
“I was devastated. It still hurts. I mean, I really loved him.”
Um, Kathy, you unfunny asshat; if you loved Anderson you’d know he was giving his opinion, which you didn’t like, about an opinion you gave, which a lot of people didn’t like.

Grow up, move the fuck on, and become funny again.
Even billionaires are asshats and whiny little narcissistic bitches, and, no, I don’t mean _____ … cuz he ain’t no billionaire. This is about billionaire developer Harry Macklowe who splattered a picture of him with his eons younger fiancé on a Park Avenue building that his ex-wife of 58 years was moving into.

Harry and Linda Macklowe didn’t have a prenup, so they fought over their East Hamptons home, their $700 million art collection, and two adjoining apartments at 432 Park Ave … the building that Harry and new wife Patricia’s humongous faces currently terrorize. Both Harry and Linda wanted to live in the building but Linda won out and so Harry is acting like a dick.

And it might also be because Linda walked away with half of Harry’s $2 billion fortune.

I wonder how much that big picture cost him.
It’s funny, and sad, when people dredge up a nearly thirty-year-old feud to make themselves newsworthy, but that exactly what Peter Bogdanovich is doing by claiming that he and he only is responsible for Cher’s noteworthy role in Mask.

Yes, he came for Cher, bitches. When asked in an interview who was the most difficult actor he’s ever worked with, Peter said:
“Well, she didn’t trust anybody, particularly men. She doesn’t like men. That’s why she’s named Cher: She dropped her father’s name. Sarkisian, it is. She can’t act. She won Best Actress at Cannes because I shot her very well. And she can’t sustain a scene. She couldn’t do what Tatum [O’Neal] did in Paper Moon. She’d start off in the right direction, but she’d go off wrong somehow, very quickly. So I shot a lot of close-ups of her because she’s very good in close-ups.”
Damn, Pete! Why so angry? Oh … maybe because, why he also says he and Cher ended up getting along quite well making the movie, afterwards when he sued the studio for replacing his preferred Bruce Springsteen song at the end with one by Bob Seger, Cher sided against him.

So, he’s a tiny man with a big ego. Got it.
A-Rod proposed to JLo so these two kids with some five marriages, and many more engagements, between them are taking quite the risk. But has it already soured?

It seems that back in the day, A-Rod had an affair with Jessica Canseco, ex-wife of Jose Canseco, and now Jose is claiming it’s on again. In fact, he Tweeted about it:
“Watching World of Dance watching JLo text Alex Rodriguez little does she know that he is cheating on her with my ex-wife Jessica poor girl she has no idea who he really is”
And this:
“I was there a few months back with her when he called her on her phone”
Then this one:
“Alex Rodriguez stop being a piece of shit stop cheating on Jennifer Lopez”
And then Jose went all kinds of crazy:
“Alex Rodriguez I challenge you to a boxing match or an MMA match anytime you want. I am willing to take a polygraph to prove that what I'm saying about Alex Rodriguez is 100% accurate”
Canseco had me, because I can see A-Rod being a cheater, right up until the boxing challenge. Now it seems it’s all about Jose being thirsty for press … and maybe a shot with his ex-wife?
College admissions scam artist, and now out-of-work actress, Lori Loughlin was allowed to keep her passport when she turned herself into the FBI and was charged with bribing officials to get her two moronic daughters into USC.

Lori kept her passport because she had work commitments in Vancouver filming Hallmark movies and her Hallmark series, When Calls the Heart. She told the court that she had filming commitments throughout the rest of the year.

Yeah, not so fast criminal … the Hallmark Channel has issued a hard pass response that Lori Loughlin has been dropped from all Hallmark Channel productions:
“We are saddened by the recent news surrounding the college admissions allegations. We are no longer working with Lori Loughlin and have stopped development of all productions that air on the Crown Media Family Network channels involving Lori Loughlin.”
Along with stopping all current projects, the network will no longer air any content featuring Loughlin.

Ouch; but wait … the producers of Fuller House say they have zero plans to bring her back for the next season.

If only her kids could get a Grade A education and then get jobs to support their mother, but the rumor is out that USC is kicking both of her daughters to the curb.

Karma is a bitch, and right now I love her.

Friday, March 15, 2019

PR 17 Ep 1:New Day, New Runway

Well well well, Project Runway has come home to Bravo, but left Tim Gunn and Heidi Klum behind to do a pseudo-PR for Netflix or something. I was dubious, because, while Heidi I could take or leave, I need me some Gunn. Needless to say, I was dubious about host Karlie Kloss or mentor Christian Siriano—a former PR winner—and judges Elaine Welteroth, editor of Teen Vogue, and designer Brandon Maxwell. But, there was also the return of the Fabulous Nina Garcia, Editor-in-Chief of ELLE so maybe it would be okay.

And it was.

As the show started, we met the designtestants who gave us a peek at their design style with a quickie fashion show featuring just one look ... from above:

Row 1: Afa Ah Loo gowned us with a ginormous train. Bishme Cromartie presented a leather structured look that had Nina saying, ‘That’s my outfit.’ Cavanaugh Baker’s style was UWS bland. Frankie Lewis designs Big Girl Drama.
Row 2: Garo Sparo’s look seemed sort of dominatrix costume. Hester Sunshine gave us quirky crazy. Go figure. Jamall Osterholm showed The Puffy Coat. Kovid Kapoor got a smile out of Nina, who called his look, ‘Bold!’
Row 3: Lela Orr’s look gave me the blahs. Nadine Ralliford made a statement piece; she’s here to show. Rakan Aldeen is all about the sculpture. Renee Hill is some fierce drama styling. 
Row 4: Sebastian Grey presented a modern, very tailored piece. Sonia Kasparian gave me some Goth costume, or as I will now call it, Gothtume. Tessa Clark seems very modern urban future. Venny Etienne looks to create modern sportswear. 

I already have my favorites, and the ones I want to see leave first.

For the challenge, each of the judges shows a photo that represents the moment when they realized fashion was their calling.

Karlie’s is her first runway at age 13; Brandon is a phot of his mother rocking some 80s design in a fashion show at his grandmother’s clothing store. Nina shows a photo taken during her first shoot—it’s black and white and on a yacht and everyone is wearing wide-legged white pants and it’s totally Nina. Elaine gives us the first cover she worked on at Ebony ­with Serena Williams in a blue bathing suit.

The designtestants are broken into four groups, each assigned a different judge’s photo and we begin …
Row 1, left to right
Afa’s look is nice, but kind of boring, except for the king-sized sheet train bringing up the rear.
Bishme’s is nice, modern, edgy, but monochromatically dull.
Garo’s features a tiny, tiny waisted model, in what I thought of as slutty sailor.
Hester’s is a mishmash of structure and volume and faux neckline and sleeves. It’s crazy.
Jamall’s is kind of superhero, though the model’s nipples were not needed.
Row 2, left to right
Kovid’s look was goddess and flowing and, well, done before.
Nadine gave us bike messenger negligee.
Rakan. The high point was the shoes.
Sebastian also went sailor, but modern, edgy constructed sailor. I liked.
Sonia’s look was very elegant and chic. I’m watching her.

Renee is Muslim and so I think she’ll give us covered up looks, which I love because I think they’re harder to make appealing to some people. I did love how Renee, when the designtestants arrived at their apartment, said she couldn’t share a room with a man because she’s Muslim, and Sebastian assured her that he was ‘not a straight.’
It says everything about what I was envisioning.
Yassss. This is drama and chic and versatile and I love it.
Karlie loved all the details while Brandon loved its quiet strength and really reminded him of his mother in the photo. Nina was a fan of the versatility, while Elaine said she went for it all and there wasn’t a thread out of place and Brandon ended with Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

Her parents wore aprons. That’s what she said; Dad worked in a mill and mom made pottery. So, Tessa will give us an apron-esque look, with flowing straps down the back and shell buttons—or, as Nina calls them, ‘but-tons.’
I really went very minimal.
From the front, it’s safe, but turn it around and there’s some fun and some whimsy and some sexy.
Brandon dubbed it a chic fisherman, especially with the netted handbag. Nina scared Tessa by saying it didn’t look like $250 … it looked luxe and expensive, comfortable and confident.  Elaine loved it up close, and Nina, also a fan of a pocket, loved that detail Karlie said it was the kind of dress no one would notice when you entered the room, but when you walked passed them and saw the back, it was all over.

I like Venny, he seems fun. But he loves a kitchen sink. During the critique, Cristian looked at his outfit inspired by Brandon’s mother and said to edit it down … there was black and white and silver and leather and feathers! Oh my.
Luckily Venny listened.
C’mon Brandon! Crack a smile!
There could have been a further edit … and then he might have added that other sleeve.
Brandon called it confident and powerful while Nina said it got a great reaction on the runway; she added that it was a lot of look, a risk, but sometimes more is better than less. Elaine asked where a real woman might wear it—Venny said on a night out with the girls—but did love the one-sleeved jacket. Karlie agreed and said it was very well constructed.

She was given Karlie’s photo and noticed the other designers were going very silver and muted in their color palette and so she opted for some red.
That might not have been good.
It’s very glamorous, very colorful.
I don’t see the glamour and I see just two colors and some ugly shoes.
Karlie liked the simplicity of the look but noted that the execution was bad. Nina liked it as Sporty Karlie but also noticed the lack of skills and the “unfortunate” fabric. Brandon wondered if the long red piece was intended as Kleenex and said you could see the mistakes from space. Elaine loved the asymmetry but Karlie got in the last dig, “It’s not the worst.”

Frankie’s a crier; and she may have good reason seeing that she’s homeless and her boyfriend dumped her and she screwed up the measurements on her body suit and had to create this mess in a couple of house.
But there’s something about Frankie that the others like and many rallied around to encourage her and help her …as in physically help her sew it together at the last minute.
I feel sick.
I feel you, gurl.
Nina hated the fabric because it didn’t offer the support of a true body suit. And when Frankie tried to point out that there was some stretch to the fabric, she literally pulled a piece of it off the model. Elaine noted that you only get one shot to show your stuff, and this showed no craftsmanship at all. Brandon said she had design but no real POV. Karlie tells Frankie that she has "questions about her taste level."

This is the snob of the bunch. She whined about a twin bed at the apartment because she hasn’t slept on a twin since she was in Europe and they pushed two twins together to make her a king. She declared that$250 was not enough to shop for fabrics at retail prices; duh, bitch, it’s the PR! She worried she couldn’t design for a curvy model …and she couldn’t. She whined that Frankie got help sewing her look right after she asked her model to help sew hers.
She tried for a simple black dress and a cool jacket but didn’t measure the jacket right and so all that was left was the dress. Big mistake, huge.
I’m not feeling so hot.
WTF kind of Target off-the-rack, I-could-make0-this-myself is going on here?
Brandon called it basic … ouch … and couldn’t believe she spent all her money Nina said it could have been better …perhaps with a designer with skills? Elaine gave Cavanaugh props for knowing she had a horrible look, but couldn’t connect it to Brandon’s photo. Karlie noted that even the accessories couldn’t save the look.

I was pulling for Renee, but Tessa got the win.

I was pulling for Cavanaugh, to go home, and got the win. And when she left she said, “I wasn’t expecting to ho home on the first challenge. My garment was flattering and had detail, while other garments … were thrown together without thought. I’m so ready to wash my hair and to sleep on a real bed with a real pillow.”

Bye Felicia.
Hester made the rookie mistake of picking a fabric she’d never used before and almost screwed herself. Luckily, she tossed it in the trash.

Christian is no Tim Gunn, but I liked his mentoring style, and the fact he said he was so excited he was about to pee.

Mimi, Kovid’s model, is the first trans model on the PR and I loved Kovid’s reaction to her story:
“I’m so honored.”
He then told who he and his boyfriend were outed to the police in his home country and had to flee to safety. Oy, this world.

Lela called herself eco-lux; I’ll hold the verdict on that one.

Kovid was, at first, annoying, and then he turned delightful and sweet and lovely.

I hope Frankie doesn’t cry every week because I’m over it already.

I loved Afa’s face as he watched Cavanaugh put her model to work. Oy, the grimace.

Karlie? She made me miss Heidi, but she may improve over time. Brandon? I need some snark from him and I know he’s got it. I did love how, every time someone took off a jacket, he squeeed, “Ooooh, a reveal!” Elaine? Okurr. Nina? Yassss, queen. Keep in mind that Cavanaugh lost because she broke Rule # 1 of Project Runway: Don’t.Bore.Nina.

The Hotties, after just one look? Garo, Sebastian and Venny.

What did YOU think of PR 2.0?