Browsing All Posts filed under »Entertainment«

Vitas, the Man With the Five-Octave Voice

May 1, 2017

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His name is Vitaliy Vladasovich Grachyov, but you can call him Vitas.  He was born in Latvia, raised in Ukraine, sings in Russian, and is wildly popular in China.  When I say “wildly popular,” I mean, he draws crowds of fainting girls worthy of the Beatles’ heyday.  Here is a video of crowd reactions, shot […]

Not Your Average Holiday Movie… “Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale”

December 19, 2016

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In the mood for some Christmas entertainment that isn’t all gooey-saccharine-sweet?  How about a Christmas horror movie? If you don’t mind subtitles and can take it as the silly comedy-horror show that it is, check out the Finnish movie, Rare Exports:  A Christmas Tale.  You don’t want this Santa coming down your chimney. There are […]

Joan Larsen’s Sleigh Full of Holiday Ideas: Turning Your Selection of Christmas Gifts into Lifelong Memories

December 14, 2016

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by Joan Larsen   Aren’t the feelings of warmth, of joy and laughter .  .  . but, most of all, of love – what the holidays truly are supposed to be?  Shouldn’t the element of togetherness be forefront in this season?  I think we are all nodding yes.  I am sure you are. But instead, […]

A Halloween Treat: Robbie Burns’ “Tam O’Shanter”

October 31, 2016

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Perhaps you are familiar with Cutty Sark Scotch Whiskey, with the ship on the label.  You may know that the liquor is named for the Cutty Sark, a clipper built in 1869 for the tea trade, and later used in the wool trade.  She was fast, holding the speed record from Australia to Britain for […]

So You’ve Never Heard of Steampunk?

October 24, 2016

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There was Lila, invited to a Halloween party at the last minute, and not a thing to wear. What to do, what to do… Aha! For Christmas a few years ago, some wonderfully strange friends had given Lila Ebola and Plague. No, no, not the actual diseases; these were somewhat cute, plush, giant microbe toys […]

All I Need to Know, I Learned From Comics: Baltimore Comic-Con This Weekend!

August 29, 2016

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This weekend, for anyone who can make it, is the Baltimore Comic-Con! Hubby and I were fortunate enough to attend the event a couple of years back.  It was apparently an enormous success and drew the largest crowds seen in… maybe the whole history of the event, at least up to that point.  The line, for […]

Lauriate Roly Remembers: They Laughed When I Sat Down to Play

March 14, 2016

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I don’t know how I learned to play the piano. It’s such a ridiculous history that I’m having trouble writing about it.  But, ridiculous as it may be, I’m going to try to tell you, as clearly as I, in my senior of senior years, may relate the story and attempt to put all the fatuous […]

Beware the Machine-Compiled Dictionary

February 1, 2016

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Yes, I am talking about YOU, Dictionary.com! Language is a tricky thing.  Some years ago, I stood in a bookstore alongside my Russian friend.  We spotted some pretty well-respected brand-name dictionaries of slang and idioms for the Russian language.  As a student of the language, I was immediately interested.  I pulled on off the shelf, […]

Joan Larsen Presents: Favorite Bond Girls of All Time

November 4, 2015

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By Joan Larsen   The latest James Bond movie – SPECTRE – is about to hit the screens in the United States . . . a week after London’s world premiere. Yes, I think we have all noticed that most of the latest films don’t seem to draw crowds as they once did. But James […]

Joan Larsen Presents James Bond: Shaken, Not Stirred – The Iconic Destinations of All the Bond Movies

October 28, 2015

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By Joan Larsen, adapted from Chris Leadbeater, “Around the World with Every James Bond Film,” Travel Section, The Telegraph, October 24, 2015. Spectre. The James Bond of old is back . . . achingly cool, tackling the action and the romantic scenes with an almost boyish relish that is – well, almost impossible to resist. […]

Joan Larsen Presents: The Unexpected Delights of a Painter and His Gifts

September 23, 2015

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By Joan Larsen Out of the blue – truly out of the blue – a gift of a short film arrived in my mailbox. The accompanying card – from my dearest friend – read: This is for you. Sit down, put in the film — and prepare to be enthralled by this rather young English […]

Bandshell (Maybe Forever?)

September 7, 2015

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By Lauriate Roly One of my greatest pleasures is hearing a band playing in an outdoor bandshell.  From earliest childhood days that I can recall, listening to music being played in the open air is just about the most beautiful feeling there is for me. The music is raw.  No enhancing sound devices involved and […]

Top 20 Film Performances of 2014

February 27, 2015

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By Luther Elmo As promised on Monday, here are the top 20 performances in film for 2014. Like the films themselves, there was a very strong lot from which to select, but unsurprisingly, most of these were drawn from films that I highlighted previously (proving that in most cases, it’s the characters we respond to, […]

Apple Is Losing Its Edge, and Here’s Why

January 9, 2015

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It’s not just the issues of battery life or questions over just how much storage their devices really have. The main issue is whether users find the devices useful and functional for their own purposes.  Hubby’s verdict:  Not any more.   By now we’ve probably all heard the news that Apple is facing a class-action […]

New Year’s Resolution: Please, No More Tourism to Cultlike, Repressive Dictatorships Like North Korea

January 2, 2015

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Now that “The Interview” has been released, woe unto any American snared by North Korea. North Korea has a well-known history of imprisoning Americans (see the summary of recent cases at the end of this article), sentencing them to hard labor, and then – after weeks, months or years – granting the American’s release only […]

Dinner Movie Theater: Nothing Like Dinner Theater

December 19, 2014

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… and I didn’t even really like dinner theater, either. Lila does not often attend live theater, but way back in college, I had occasion to attend a dinner-theater production. It was a formal affair, with coats and ties and crisp tablecloths and candlelight, all very subdued to allow for almost full attention to the […]

Before You Buy a Drone For Christmas… You May Need a Pilot’s License

December 1, 2014

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Once again, the ignorant and the reckless ruin everyone’s fun.   Last spring at my Dad’s old house, I looked out to see someone poking around suspiciously on the road in front of the house. I’m not shy; I went to investigate. It was a real estate photographer, hired by the neighbor to shoot aerial […]

The Benefits of Cutting Back on Dining Out

October 31, 2014

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Lila and Hubby recently took advantage of a long-languishing gift card for dinner and a movie. We figured we’d better use it up before it expired or we lost it or something. We intentionally chose a weekday on the theory that the theater and the restaurant might be less crowded. We were right about the […]

Jim Klobuchar Presents: From Ginger Rogers, A Squeeze and a Promise

October 29, 2014

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It is with pleasure and delight that I introduce you to a man of many talents: Jim Klobuchar – the daily columnist for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune for over 30 years (and probably the best-known name in the whole upper Midwest), named the nation’s top columnist in 1984, finalist in NASA’s Journalist in Space project (a […]

So You’ve Never Heard of Steampunk?

October 27, 2014

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So there was Lila, invited to a Halloween party at the last minute, and not a thing to wear. What to do, what to do… Aha! For Christmas a few years ago, some wonderfully strange friends had given Lila Ebola and Plague. No, no, not the actual diseases; these were somewhat cute, plush, giant microbe […]

Joan Larsen’s Book Reviews: An Inside Look – Remarkable Women of Our Time

October 15, 2014

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By Joan Larsen   For those of us who are “middle-aged” or a tiny bit above, reading books is in our blood. Some of us have libraries of books we cannot part with. You can count me as one of them. I am counting on heaven as being a library in fact . . . […]

The Ray Rice Assault Case: Can A Man Be Separated From His Actions?

September 12, 2014

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Just like in the Steubenville rape case, a hometown leaps to the defense of their native son who has committed an egregious offense. I don’t approve, but I do sort of understand where the NFL is coming from on the Ray Rice case. There’s a lot of money in professional sports, and if your athletes […]

Joan Larsen Encore: The Grand Days of London – An Interlude with Ingrid Bergman

July 23, 2014

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By Joan Larsen Another world, another time…  a time when we were young, eager to grab for the stars along the way, and then – then – an opportunity to go to London.  LONDON!  Well, London was like being given the world.  Two weeks in London was to be a glimpse of heaven and we […]

Online News Sites Beware: Advertisers That Act as Reader Repellent

July 18, 2014

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If your ads are too distracting, you’re just making me leave the page I am on to seek out my content elsewhere… the opposite of the desired effect.   Lila is a big consumer of news articles. I know that sites have to be funded by something, and since most people don’t want to pay […]

Huge Star Wars Fan Conflicted About the New Episode VII Movie

May 19, 2014

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I was in my teens, and a friend breathlessly asked: “Lila! Have you seen Star Wars yet?” I had not seen it. I had not even heard of it. What the heck was Star Wars? “You have got to see it, you’ll love it!” Eh, whatever, if you say so. So we settle into the […]

Lauriate Roly’s Valentine Challenge: Love Songs

February 14, 2014

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By Lauriate Roly Some time ago, reaction to my Pick-Me-Up article featuring the lovely and inspiring song lyrics, “On A Clear Day,” by one of our best song lyricists, prompted me to assemble a group of some other remarkable and memorable phrases in love songs. If you’re a romantic like people say I am, and […]

Joan Larsen Presents: Fleming, Ian Fleming – the Man Who Would be Bond

February 3, 2014

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by Joan Larsen “Bond, James Bond”.  No matter what generation we are, just hearing those words and most of us could be found running to the theaters for another in the exciting – and more than a little sexy – series of Bond movies. But the great BBC America – with its 4-part mini-series about […]

Paul Walker: A Cautionary Tale

December 9, 2013

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He starred in a series of movies about illegal street racing, until a high-speed crash killed him. Until his death in a fiery car crash, I had no idea who Paul Walker was.  It quickly became clear that he was the star of the movie franchise The Fast and the Furious.   Walker was not driving […]

A Halloween Treat: Robbie Burns’ “Tam O’Shanter”

October 31, 2013

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Perhaps you are familiar with Cutty Sark Scotch Whiskey, with the ship on the label.  You may know that the liquor is named for the Cutty Sark, a clipper built in 1869 for the tea trade, and later used in the wool trade.  She was fast, holding the speed record from Australia to Britain for […]

Chris Brown: DC Isn’t LA. Hope You Enjoyed Your Cell.

October 28, 2013

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Chris Brown in yet another brawl.  More proof that money doesn’t buy class. I had no idea Chris Brown was in my area until I opened up the news yesterday morning to learn that he was arrested for felony assault outside the W Hotel sometime around 4:30 AM Sunday. Now, first point:  the W Hotel […]

All I Need to Know, I Learned From Comics

September 9, 2013

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This past Saturday, Hubby and I attended the Baltimore Comic-Con.  It was apparently an enormous success and drew the largest crowds seen in… maybe the whole 14-year history of the event.  The line, for those of us who already had tickets, wrapped entirely around the outside of the building and it took nearly half an […]