136. Kinky Boots, Montecito, And James Brown

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1. Television…Reality Television Is Not Dead!…Montecito, California!
The Cruel World Of Ballroom Dancing! Hips Don’t Lie!

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Everyone falls in love with his or her doctor, nurse, dance instructor, ski instructor, financial guru, and bartender. It is called the Nightingale Effect. Some get over it and some cruelly do not! In Montecito some will get over this love, some will not! There will be pain and tears in this show! Love hurts!

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This week’s office assignment was to find out if reality television is dead and to research that unknown show that might become one’s next reality addiction. The winner was the A&E Network’s Montecito. It beat out four finalists in our weekly viewing marathon.

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Montecito won because the California based show has everything. Montecito’s theme is the rich and their fascination with ballroom dancing and themselves. The show is about women eating up men, and men eating up women! Montecito has famous people, ballroom dance contests, money, dancing, music, jealousy, backstabbing, deceit, in-and-out-fighting, fancy cars, outstanding houses, the club and restaurant scene, fashion, and make-up. It is the perfect viewing pleasure for every football player. Try it!

2. Movies I…Kinky Boots…Fashion’s Finest!
    Walking And Dancing Feet Must Have Them!

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Chiwetel Ejiofer recently starred in Twelve Years A Slave. It was last year’s Academy Award Best Picture winner. Ejiofer played the true story role of a black person freely born in New England who was captured and placed back into the brutal world of Louisiana slavery for over twelve years. Chiwetel won praise and numerous awards for his historic re-creation of Solomon Northup’s 1853 slave narrative.

In researching Chiwetel Ejiofor’s previous roles, the movie Kinky Boots (2004) jumped out as a “must see” movie far from his present undertakings. In Kinky Boots, also a true story, Ejiofer plays a successful big city, cross-dressing, English singer and club performer. His chance meeting with a ‘shoe man’ will change both of their lives.

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After a great number of poignant, funny, and insensitive machinations Chiwetel Ejiofer, Joel Edgerton, and Sarah-Jane Potts form a partnership to save the failing shoe factory that Edgerton inherited from his father. The town is a working class, off limits to cross dressers, type of English town. There will be problems! Expect the best and worst from people as you enjoy another work by Chiwetel Ejiofer.

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To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar (1995) is a very similar movie with a cross dressing cast of Patrick Swayze, Wesley Snipes, and John Leguizamo. Just like the English town in Kinky Boots, a small western American town (Snydersville) has to decide if they are ready for this “passing through,” cross dressing trio. You will love the shoe and clothing choices in both movies, as well, as the stories. Swayze’s successful Dirty Dancing (1987) and Road House (1989) came seven years before this cross-country trip (New York) to participate in a California drag queen contest. Julie Newmar is the group’s idol and she presents the winning trophy in California at the end of the movie.

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The play Kinky Boots, a Tony Musical Award winner, is a great Broadway (www.kinkybootsthemusical.com/) ticket. Cuddle with the kinky red!!!

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  1. Movies II…What If…How To Ruin A Friendship!
    Can Daniel Radcliffe And Zoe Kazan Go From Friends To Lovers?

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What If with Daniel Radcliffe, Zoe Kazan, Megan Park, Mackenzie Davis, and Adam Driver was a Best Independent Film pick at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). It is our non-violent pick of the week!

Radcliffe and Kazan are best friends. Their likes, dislikes, speech patterns, and quirks are the same. Both of them would see The Princess Bride movie at a drop of a hat…so would everyone in the office as they mouth ten of the best lines from the movie before they are spoken.

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Kazan is involved and Radcliffe is not. Kazan’s boyfriend of five year is not unlikable. Driver and Park are Kazan and Radcliffe’s best friends. Their sexual antics embarrass the “friends” in every way. They soul kiss with the best of them. The friend’s story drives the movie, as well as, the major star’s story.

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Park and Driver would like to see these two get together. They have been initiating funny situations that force them to do so. The not-dating couple does not think these situations are funny, though. Kazan’s sister (Mackenzie Davis) thinks she sees sparks every time the friends are together.Mackenzie, also, stars in Halt and Catch Fire. With Mackenzie’s computer moxy,  the show has become a big hit on the AMC Network.

What If might kindle a great, revealing discussion or start a fire with your not dating best friend. It could ruin a great relationship, too.

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A Column Side Note…Dating sites are putting greater numbers of so called “better-matched” people together. Everyone in the office is dating a mismatched person. Some reputable big name research agency should do a study comparing the divorce rates of better-matched people to we the regular people. In this movie, you have to decide who really is the better match? We are guessing your pick will be wrong!

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  1. Social Media I…The Meet-Ups’ Phenomenon!

Meet-Ups is a national organization that plans and lists events in every interest area. They have chapters throughout the United States. They have a gigantic presence in the Philadelphia area. If you an entrepreneur, biker, dancer, tennis player, technology specialist, social media lover, musician, book reader, artist, of a particular faith, or new mom, there are others looking to connect with and share experiences with you. You just sign up and show up. You will see a picture and mini-write up of everyone in your new group. Nothing is easier, not even root canal!

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Meet-Ups will even help you advertise a group you are looking to put together if your interest is not listed in your area. Go to the Meet-Ups website, put in your zip code or city and a weekly list of events will appear in your email every Monday.

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5. History…Women Standing Tall…A Wealth Of Celebrations!
Our Tenth Annual Salute To This Monumental Event!

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The 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified on August 18th, 1920. It granted women the right to vote. The Woman’s History Project (www.nwhp.org) and National Organization of Women (www.now.org) are planning a month and more of memorable events. There are a large number of additional groups commemorating this event. These two groups have 50 million members. This is the tenth time we have featured them on our column. Please join or organize a celebration in your school or community.

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  1. Social Media II…Spokes…My Bike Is Faster Than Your Bike!

Kate from Chicago sent us some outstanding pictures from her weekly bike group and the group’s weekend jaunts throughout the Chicago suburbs. Spokes is an Illinois and Indiana based bicycle organization that has now come to the Delaware Valley. Their concept is a simple one: friendship, companionship, health and fitness for all ages, bicycle safety and care, and enjoying the scenic and historic beauty of the areas around your hometown or city.

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The Spokes organization invites groups from all over the United States to form up and ride. Chesapeake Bay riders took up their call and have riding events for just about every day of the week on their website. Here is what they say about their mission: Chesapeake Spokes.org was founded on providing a friendly and safe cycling experience for all levels of cyclists. We promote camaraderie and expect members to treat each other with respect both on and off the bike. All meetings are open and we provide an open channel of communication were club business, ideas, suggestions, complaints are voiced for all members to see and respond via our exclusive and private Google Groups’ Account. Everyday, members are keeping in touch and picking up rides. Become a member and join the fun!

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If you CAN’T get a Spokes’ group together in your area, go down in the basement, dust off your tricycle, rehab the bell, put a balloon on your handle bar, and watch that your knees do not hit your chin on the ride down the street. You will thank us for getting you off your couch. Helmets please!

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  1. Movies III…Get On Up Revisited…James Brown Had The Funk!
    Chadwick Boseman For Academy Award!

Should you see an outstanding movie a second time to insure your “this was great” original thought process was correct?

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History Hollywood, a resource we use for our research time and time again, details the movie with everyone in the ‘real life’ story of James Brown. Their1. abwomen3 now and then photo gallery is eye opening (http://www.historyvshollywood.com/reelfaces/get-on-up). Mick Jaggar’s company made the movie and Jaggar picked the songs for it.

Chadwick Boseman was beyond good in his portrayal of James Brown in the movie Get On Up. James Brown, in life and as depicted in the movie, was good and bad, but Boseman was great in this role as previously reviewed on this column five weeks ago.

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Chadwick Boseman is our first choice and only choice this year for the lead actor in a drama Academy Award. He was that good! We don’t even have a second leading role yet. There has to be one out there! Your choice would be? Please confirm our selection at your local theater in the next few weeks or after the film reaches the many ‘after theater’ venues. You will Get On Up to this one!

  1. Music…James Brown…The Ballads Are As Good As The Funk!

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James Brown reached Billboard’s top song’s chart 100 times. This puts Brown in the all-time top ten of all male and female recording artists. He, also, has the dubious distinction of never reaching number one with any of his amazing ground breaking recordings.

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James Brown’s top five songs in order are:

  1. I Got It (I Feel Good)…(Featured in the movie Good Morning Vietnam)
  2. Living In America(Grammy Award winner)
  3. I Got The Feeling…(Funktastic)
  4. Cold Sweat(Funk’s beginning)
  5. Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag (Brown’s first top ten hit)

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9.  Let’s Talk is now being read in Australia, Russia, England, South Philadelphia, and by the astronauts in space. Can you hear us up there?

While singing your favorite James Brown song, think of two creative paragraphs on recreation, books, art, music, gaming, education, travel or more. Please then record them and send them to us. Don’t be afraid to let the inner “funk” in you branch out. Our reading audience is insatiable for any new idea…even yours.

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Your ideas and suggestions should be sent to Tom Palumbo at tjpalumbo@aol.com. Please send a photo or two with your two-paragraph contribution. We’d love to display your art and photography on Let’s Talk over our discussions, too. Thank you for adding your work and expertise to this column! Your varied ideas, experiences, products, and insights will surely bring a larger audience to the column and make the column’s content more interesting and far reaching.

We subscribe to the concept of reflected glory! Everyone that submits something for the column makes us look better.

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After 20 years of paper pamphlets and now a WordPress column, we hope Let’s Talk is getting better looking and more informative with each issue. Ask your friends to drop their email in the follow box in the bottom right hand corner of the opening page to receive the column each week.

The follow box does not appear on your phone, but does when reading the column on your computer. The column is archived. You can read new write-ups and old write-ups at your convenience. Please alert your mailing list about our work.

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About tjpalumbo

Tom Palumbo is a nationally known and award winning author, teacher, technology designer, administrator, and grant writer. He has taught for thirty-five years in preschool through 12th grade classrooms throughout the quad state area. His ideas have made a difference in the way thousands of teachers, parents, and children read, write, do mathematics, use technology, and think creatively and critically. Tom’s twenty books on reading, writing, critical thinking, and mathematics have won four national book awards. 5,000 teachers and home schooling parents have matriculated through his graduate courses/lectures. 12,000 have signed up for his website. As Director of Pennsylvania’s Parent Information Center and New Jersey’s Citizen’s For Better Schools Resource Center, Tom received over two hundred commendations for his presentations to thousands of teachers, parents, and administrators throughout the Florida, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland area. Workshop participants receive idea loaded CD’s, access to hundreds of videos, PowerPoints, curriculum links, games, and lessons on his website, and an activity booklet filled with common core curriculum in line with local, state, and national standards. Instruction, on each of these resources, is presented during his presentation. Mr. Palumbo has over two hundred learning centers, bulletin boards, and project developers in reading, writing, poetry, literature, and math in make-it/take it item format that can, also, be part of any workshop program. Call or email Tom to set up a workshop for your organization. Tom Palumbo tjpalumbo@aol.com 215-262-9986 aimtjp.wikispaces.com
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