THE CONGRESSIONAL SHUTDOWN OF AMERICA (AGAIN)

 

Here is a handy flowchart for the next time congressional leaders are considering holding the government hostage. The next time Congress says to American citizens:  “Fuck you!”

The next time Congress gives not a damn about this nation and all those whom they are supposed to serve.

Hey congressional leaders, next time anyone talks about a shutdown, please consult this:

CONGRESSIONAL MELTDOWN CLOSING GOVT.

Thank you.

Here endeth the lesson.

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WORLD WILDLIFE DAY: MARCH 3, 2015

WORLD WILDLIFE DAY

World Wildlife Day is on March 3 every year to raise awareness of endangered animals and plants, and ways to fight against wildlife crime.

Female African elephant with her baby at a national park in Tanzania.
©bigstockphoto.com/Stu Porter

Pledges and Donations

Wildlife crime involves illegally selling and buying animal body parts, as well as stealing or killing animals that are protected by government laws. Organizations like the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the United Nations (UN) want to end these kinds of crimes, so they promote the day by asking people to:

  • Back a ranger – donate money to help rangers who protect endangered animals get equipment and training they need to stop wildlife crime.
  • Sign pledges urging governments to strengthen their laws to stop wildlife crime.

What’s Open or Closed?

World Wildlife Day is a global observance and not a public holiday so it’s business as usual.

About World Wildlife Day

Wildlife trade is one of the most profitable illicit trades in the world, estimated at up to $10 billion annually. Illegal wildlife trade of elephant ivory, rhino horns, and tiger products, is widespread in many countries, particularly in Asia and Africa. It is controlled by dangerous crime syndicates that traffic wildlife like drugs or weapons.

On December 20, 2013, the UN added World Wildlife Day to its calendar as an official event to be celebrated from March 3, 2014, onwards. It declared the day out of concern that wildlife crime had negative economic, environmental and social impacts worldwide.

World Wildlife Day Observances

 

Weekday Date Year Name Holiday type Where it is observed
Mon Mar 3 2014 World Wildlife Day United Nations observance
Tue Mar 3 2015 World Wildlife Day United Nations observance
Thu Mar 3 2016 World Wildlife Day United Nations observance
Fri Mar 3 2017 World Wildlife Day United Nations observance
Sat Mar 3 2018 World Wildlife Day United Nations observance
Sun Mar 3 2019 World Wildlife Day United Nations observance
Tue Mar 3 2020 World Wildlife Day United Nations observance

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ZERO DISCRIMINATION DAY [UNAIDS]: MARCH 1, 2015

 

Zero Discrimination Day

March 1 is Zero Discrimination Day, an annual worldwide event that promotes diversity and recognizes that everyone counts.

The butterfly is the symbol for Zero Discrimination Day.
The butterfly is the symbol for Zero Discrimination Day.
©bigstockphoto.com/amnachphoto

Celebrate Zero Discrimination Day

Organizations like the United Nations (UN) actively promote the day with various activities to celebrate everyone’s right to live a full life with dignity regardless of age, gender, sexuality, nationality, ethnicity, skin color, height, weight, profession, education, and beliefs.

Many countries have laws against discrimination but it’s still a problem in all layers of society in every country in the world. Many countries have and still use discrimination as a way of governing.

The symbol for Zero Discrimination Day is the butterfly, widely used by people to share their stories and photos as a way to end discrimination and work towards positive transformation.

What’s Open or Closed?

Zero Discrimination Day is a global observance and not a public holiday so it’s business as usual.

About Zero Discrimination Day

The UN first celebrated Zero Discrimination Day on March 1, 2014, after UNAIDS, a UN program on human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), launched its Zero Discrimination Campaign on World AIDS Day in December 2013.

Zero Discrimination Day Observances

 

Weekday Date Year Name Holiday type Where it is observed
Sat Mar 1 2014 Zero Discrimination Day United Nations observance
Sun Mar 1 2015 Zero Discrimination Day United Nations observance
Tue Mar 1 2016 Zero Discrimination Day United Nations observance
Wed Mar 1 2017 Zero Discrimination Day United Nations observance
Thu Mar 1 2018 Zero Discrimination Day United Nations observance
Fri Mar 1 2019 Zero Discrimination Day United Nations observance
Sun Mar 1 2020 Zero Discrimination Day United Nations observance

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IN REMEMBRANCE: 3-1-2015

LEONARD NIMOY, SPOCK OF ‘STAR TREK’

 

The Man Who Was Spock

Leonard Nimoy, best known for playing the character Spock in the Star Trek television shows and films, died at 83.

Video by Robin Lindsay on Publish Date February 27, 2015. Photo by NBC, via Photofest.

His wife, Susan Bay Nimoy, confirmed his death, saying the cause was end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Mr. Nimoy announced last year that he had the disease, attributing it to years of smoking, a habit he had given up three decades earlier. He had been hospitalized earlier in the week.

His artistic pursuits — poetry, photography and music in addition to acting — ranged far beyond the United Federation of Planets, but it was as Mr. Spock that Mr. Nimoy became a folk hero, bringing to life one of the most indelible characters of the last half century: a cerebral, unflappable, pointy-eared Vulcan with a signature salute and blessing: “Live long and prosper” (from the Vulcan “Dif-tor heh smusma”).

Nimoy Explains Origin of Vulcan Greeting

As part of the Yiddish Book Center Wexler Oral History Project, Leonard Nimoy explains the origin of the Vulcan hand signal used by Spock, his character in the “Star Trek” series.

Video by Yiddish Book Center on Publish Date February 27, 2015. Photo by Yiddish Book Center’s Wexler Oral History Project.

Mr. Nimoy, who was teaching Method acting at his own studio when he was cast in the original “Star Trek” television series in the mid-1960s, relished playing outsiders, and he developed what he later admitted was a mystical identification with Spock, the lone alien on the starship’s bridge.

Yet he also acknowledged ambivalence about being tethered to the character, expressing it most plainly in the titles of two autobiographies: “I Am Not Spock,” published in 1977, and “I Am Spock,” published in 1995.

In the first, he wrote, “In Spock, I finally found the best of both worlds: to be widely accepted in public approval and yet be able to continue to play the insulated alien through the Vulcan character.”

“Star Trek,” which had its premiere on NBC on Sept. 8, 1966, made Mr. Nimoy a star. Gene Roddenberry, the creator of the franchise, called him “the conscience of ‘Star Trek’ ” — an often earnest, sometimes campy show that employed the distant future (as well as some special effects that appear primitive by today’s standards) to take on social issues of the 1960s.

His stardom would endure. Though the series was canceled after three seasons because of low ratings, a cultlike following — the conference-holding, costume-wearing Trekkies, or Trekkers (the designation Mr. Nimoy preferred) — coalesced soon after “Star Trek” went into syndication.

The fans’ devotion only deepened when “Star Trek” was spun off into an animated show, various new series and an uneven parade of movies starring much of the original television cast, including — besides Mr. Nimoy — William Shatner (as Captain Kirk), DeForest Kelley (Dr. McCoy), George Takei (the helmsman, Sulu), James Doohan (the chief engineer, Scott), Nichelle Nichols (the chief communications officer, Uhura) and Walter Koenig (the navigator, Chekov).

When the director J. J. Abrams revived the “Star Trek” film franchise in 2009, with an all-new cast including Zachary Quinto as Spock, he included a cameo part for Mr. Nimoy, as an older version of the same character. Mr. Nimoy also appeared in the 2013 follow-up, “Star Trek Into Darkness.”

His zeal to entertain and enlighten reached beyond “Star Trek” and crossed genres. He had a starring role in the dramatic television series “Mission: Impossible” and frequently performed onstage, notably as Tevye in “Fiddler on the Roof.” His poetry was voluminous, and he published books of his photography.

He also directed movies, including two from the “Star Trek” franchise, and television shows. And he made records, singing pop songs as well as original songs about “Star Trek,” and gave spoken-word performances — to the delight of his fans and the bewilderment of critics.

But all that was subsidiary to Mr. Spock, the most complex member of the Enterprise crew, who was both one of the gang and a creature apart, engaged at times in a lonely struggle with his warring racial halves.

In one of his most memorable “Star Trek” performances, Mr. Nimoy tried to follow in the tradition of two actors he admired, Charles Laughton and Boris Karloff, who each played a monstrous character — Quasimodo and the Frankenstein monster — who is transformed by love.

In Episode 24, which was first shown on March 2, 1967, Mr. Spock is indeed transformed. Under the influence of aphrodisiacal spores he discovers on the planet Omicron Ceti III, he lets free his human side and announces his love for Leila Kalomi (Jill Ireland), a woman he had once known on Earth. In this episode, Mr. Nimoy brought to Spock’s metamorphosis not only warmth, compassion and playfulness, but also a rarefied concept of alienation.

“I am what I am, Leila,” Mr. Spock declares after the spores’ effect has worn off and his emotions are again in check. “And if there are self-made purgatories, then we all have to live in them. Mine can be no worse than someone else’s.”

Born in Boston on March 26, 1931, Leonard Simon Nimoy was the second son of Max and Dora Nimoy, Ukrainian immigrants and Orthodox Jews. His father worked as a barber.

From the age of 8, Leonard acted in local productions, winning parts at a community college, where he performed through his high school years. In 1949, after taking a summer course at Boston College, he traveled to Hollywood, though it wasn’t until 1951 that he landed small parts in two movies, “Queen for a Day” and “Rhubarb.”

Leonard Nimoy Dies at 83

CreditJerry Mosey/Associated Press

He continued to be cast in little-known movies, although he did presciently play an alien invader in a cult serial called “Zombies of the Stratosphere,” and in 1961 he had a minor role on an episode of “The Twilight Zone.” His first starring movie role came in 1952 with “Kid Monk Baroni,” in which he played a disfigured Italian street-gang leader who becomes a boxer.

Mr. Nimoy served in the Army for two years, rising to sergeant and spending 18 months at Fort McPherson in Georgia, where he presided over shows for the Army’s Special Services branch. He also directed and starred as Stanley in the Atlanta Theater Guild’s production of “A Streetcar Named Desire” before receiving his final discharge in November 1955.

He then returned to California, where he worked as a soda jerk, movie usher and cabdriver while studying acting at the Pasadena Playhouse. He achieved wide visibility in the late 1950s and early 1960s on television shows like “Wagon Train,” “Rawhide” and “Perry Mason.” Then came “Star Trek.”

Mr. Nimoy returned to college in his 40s and earned a master’s degree in Spanish from Antioch University Austin, an affiliate of Antioch College in Ohio, in 1978. Antioch University later awarded Mr. Nimoy an honorary doctorate.

Mr. Nimoy directed the movies “Star Trek III: The Search for Spock” (1984) and “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home” (1986), which he helped write. In 1991, the same year that he resurrected Mr. Spock on two episodes of “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” Mr. Nimoy was also the executive producer and a writer of the movie “Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.”

He then directed the hugely successful comedy “Three Men and a Baby” (1987), a far cry from his science-fiction work, and appeared in made-for-television movies. He received an Emmy nomination for the 1982 movie “A Woman Called Golda,” in which he portrayed the husband of Golda Meir, the prime minister of Israel, who was played by Ingrid Bergman. It was the fourth Emmy nomination of his career — the other three were for his “Star Trek” work — although he never won.

Mr. Nimoy’s marriage to the actress Sandi Zober ended in divorce. Besides his wife, he is survived by his children, Adam and Julie Nimoy; a stepson, Aaron Bay Schuck; six grandchildren and one great-grandchild; and an older brother, Melvin.

Though his speaking voice was among his chief assets as an actor, the critical consensus was that his music was mortifying. Mr. Nimoy, however, was undaunted, and his fans seemed to enjoy the camp of his covers of songs like “If I Had a Hammer.” (His first album was called “Leonard Nimoy Presents Mr. Spock’s Music From Outer Space.”)

From 1977 to 1982, Mr. Nimoy hosted the syndicated series “In Search Of …,” which explored mysteries like the Loch Ness monster and U.F.O.s. He also narrated “Ancient Mysteries” on the History Channel and appeared in commercials, including two with Mr. Shatner for Priceline.com. He provided the voice for animated characters in “Transformers: The Movie,” in 1986, and “The Pagemaster,” in 1994.

In 2001 he voiced the king of Atlantis in the Disney animated movie “Atlantis: The Lost Empire,” and in 2005 he furnished voice-overs for the computer game Civilization IV. More recently, he had a recurring role on the science-fiction series “Fringe” and was heard, as the voice of Spock, in an episode of the hit sitcom “The Big Bang Theory.”

Mr. Nimoy was an active supporter of the arts as well. The Thalia, a venerable movie theater on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, now a multi-use hall that is part of Symphony Space, was renamed the Leonard Nimoy Thalia in 2002.

He also found his voice as a writer. Besides his autobiographies, he published “A Lifetime of Love: Poems on the Passages of Life” in 2002. Typical of Mr. Nimoy’s simple free verse are these lines: “In my heart/Is the seed of the tree/Which will be me.”

In later years, he rediscovered his Jewish heritage, and in 1991 he produced and starred in “Never Forget,” a television movie based on the story of a Holocaust survivor who sued a neo-Nazi organization of Holocaust deniers.

In 2002, having illustrated his books of poetry with his photographs, Mr. Nimoy published  “Shekhina,” a book devoted to photography with a Jewish theme, that of the feminine aspect of God. His black-and-white photographs of nude and seminude women struck some Orthodox Jewish leaders as heretical, but Mr. Nimoy asserted that his work was consistent with the teachings of the kabbalah.

His religious upbringing also influenced the characterization of Spock. The character’s split-fingered salute, he often explained, had been his idea: He based it on the kohanic blessing, a manual approximation of the Hebrew letter shin, which is the first letter in Shaddai, one of the Hebrew names for God.

“To this day, I sense Vulcan speech patterns, Vulcan social attitudes and even Vulcan patterns of logic and emotional suppression in my behavior,” Mr. Nimoy wrote years after the original series ended.

But that wasn’t such a bad thing, he discovered. “Given the choice,” he wrote, “if I had to be someone else, I would be Spock.”

Correction: February 27, 2015
An earlier version of this obituary, using information from Antioch College, misstated the name of an institution that awarded Mr. Nimoy an honorary doctorate. It was Antioch University, not Antioch College.

SOURCE

“Live long, and prosper”, indeed.

Mr. Leonard Nimoy was more than just Mr. Spock. He excelled at many endeavors.

But, it will always be as the cool, logical, and level-headed Vulcan Mr. Spock of the U.S.S. Enterprise that so many of us will remember him.

He will be missed.

Rest in peace, Mr. Leonard Nimoy.

Rest in peace.

******************************************************

DORI J. MAYNARD, WHO SOUGHT DIVERSITY IN JOURNALISM

Dori J. Maynard speaking in 2013 at a public forum about the trial of George Zimmerman. Credit Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group

The cause was lung cancer, her mother, Liz Rosen, said.

At her death, Ms. Maynard was the president and chief executive of the Robert C. Maynard Institute for Journalism Education, a nonprofit organization based in Oakland and named for her father, a former editor and publisher of The Oakland Tribune. Mr. Maynard, who died in 1993, was the first black person in the United States to own a general-circulation daily newspaper.

A former newspaper reporter, Ms. Maynard joined the Maynard Institute not long after her father’s death and became its president in 2001.

There, she continued her lifelong interest in exploring the often rocky landscape where race, class, ethnicity and the news media converge. She lectured frequently on the subject and contributed articles to The Huffington Post, American Journalism Review and other publications.

During Ms. Maynard’s tenure, the institute’s purview included professional development, recruitment, a media watchdog program and a news service, America’s Wire, which provides articles on racial inequity and related subjects to newspapers, magazines and websites. To date, the institute has trained more than 5,000 minority journalists and newsroom managers around the country.

Dolores Judith Maynard was born in Manhattan on May 4, 1958; her parents divorced when she was 5. Her father’s second wife, Nancy Hicks Maynard, was one of the first black women to work as a reporter at The New York Times.

With colleagues, Robert and Nancy Maynard founded the Maynard Institute, originally known as the Institute for Journalism Education, in 1977; after Mr. Maynard’s death, it was renamed in his honor.

Dori Maynard earned a bachelor’s degree in American history from Middlebury College in Vermont and was later a reporter at The Bakersfield Californian; The Patriot Ledger, in Quincy, Mass.; and The Detroit Free Press, where her beats included City Hall and the coverage of poverty.

She and Mr. Maynard became the first father-daughter pair to be named Nieman fellows in journalism at Harvard, he in 1966 and she in 1993. Ms. Maynard was also a fellow of the Society of Professional Journalists.

With her father, she was the author of “Letters to My Children” (1995), a collection of his newspaper columns, for which she wrote introductory essays.

Ms. Maynard’s husband, Charles Grant Lewis, whom she married in 2006, died in 2008. Besides her mother, survivors include two brothers, David and Alex Maynard, and a sister, Sara-Ann Rosen. Her stepmother, Nancy Hicks Maynard, died in 2008.

Under Ms. Maynard’s stewardship, the Maynard Institute sought to educate not only aspiring journalists but also the profession of journalism itself, prodding news organizations to cast a wider net when it came to subjects deemed worthy of coverage.

“The conversation that goes on in the newsroom,” Ms. Maynard told NPR in 2005, “determines not only what stories get into the newspaper or onto your television or radio shows, but also determines all the elements that go into those stories.” She added:

“If that conversation is not managed in a way that allows the diversity of opinion that may be in your newsroom to be reflected in your coverage, important elements of those stories are left out, so that they become not only less relevant to communities of color, but they also shortchange the white community, because they are not finding out what’s going on in neighborhoods and communities other than their own.”

SOURCE

***********************************************

EUGENIE CLARK, SCHOLAR OF LIFE AQUATIC

Eugenie Clark examines deep water sharks from Suruga Bay, Japan, in 1980. Credit David Doubilet

The cause was lung cancer, her son Nikolas Konstantinou said.

Long before “Jaws” scared the wits out of swimmers, Dr. Clark rode a 40-foot whale shark off Baja California, ran into killer great white sharks while scuba diving in Hawaii, studied “sleeping” sharks in undersea caves off the Yucatán, witnessed a shark’s birth and found a rare six-gill shark in a submersible dive off Bermuda.

She also swam into schools of man-eating barracuda and had disconcerting encounters with 500-pound clams and giant squid. Despite close calls, she was never attacked, and she tended to make light of the dangers. Indeed, she told of the privileges of exploring an undersea world of exotic creatures and enchanting beauty.

Eugenie Clark in 1951. Credit The American Museum of Natural History

Dr. Clark was an ichthyologist and oceanographer whose academic credentials, teaching and research posts, scientific activities and honors filled a 20-page curriculum vitae, topped by longtime roles as a professor at the University of Maryland and director of the Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota.

She also wrote three books, 80 scientific treatises and more than 70 articles and professional papers; lectured at 60 American universities and in 19 countries abroad; appeared in 50 television specials and documentaries; was the subject of many biographies and profiles; made intriguing scientific discoveries; and had four species of fish named for her.

For all her scientific achievements, Dr. Clark was also a figure of popular culture who used her books, lectures and expertise to promote the preservation of ecologically fragile shorelines, to oppose commercial exploitation of endangered species and to counteract misconceptions, especially about sharks.

She insisted that “Jaws,” the 1975 Steven Spielberg film based on a Peter Benchley novel, and its sequels inspired unreasonable fears of sharks as ferocious killers. Car accidents are far more numerous and terrible than shark attacks, she said in a 1982 PBS documentary, “The Sharks.”

She said at the time that only about 50 shark attacks on humans were reported annually and that only 10 were fatal, and that the great white shark portrayed in “Jaws” would attack only if provoked, while most of the world’s 350 shark species were not dangerous to people at all.

“When you see a shark underwater,” she said, “you should say, ‘How lucky I am to see this beautiful animal in his environment.’ ”

Ms. Clark was born in New York City on May 4, 1922, to Charles Clark and the former Yumico Mitomi. Her father died when she was 2. Her mother worked in Lower Manhattan, and when the girl was 9 she began leaving her on Saturday mornings at an aquarium near the Battery. Fascinated, Eugenie persuaded her mother to buy her a 15-gallon tank and kept fish, toads, snakes and a small alligator at home.

She graduated from Bryant High School in Queens and Hunter College, where she majored in zoology, and earned a master’s degree at New York University.

Over the years, Dr. Clark made more than 70 deep dives in submersibles, once to 12,000 feet. Credit Tak Konstantinou

After doing research at the University of California’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography, she was a research assistant at the Museum of Natural History in New York and returned to N.Y.U., where she earned a doctorate in 1950, focusing on fish reproduction.

Further marine biology studies in Massachusetts and the West Indies led to a published paper on the visual abilities of fish. In 1949, the Navy sent her to the South Seas to study poisonous fish. Taught by Palau Islanders to spear fish underwater, she collected hundreds of specimens. A year later she collected 300 species of fish from the Red Sea, three of them new to science.

Dr. Clark was married five times. She and her second husband, Dr. Ilias Konstantinu, an orthopedic surgeon, had four children — Hera, Aya, Themistokles and Nikolas — and were divorced in 1967. They survive her, as does one grandson.

Her first book, “Lady With a Spear,” was published in 1953. In it, she told of fish that variously inflated themselves to incredible dimensions, stood on their heads to show masculinity, advertised themselves with yellow lipstick, grunted like pigs, stung with deadly effect, and had two sets of eyes — to see in and out of water.

From 1955 to 1967, Dr. Clark was the founding director of the Cape Haze Marine Laboratory in Florida, which became the Mote Marine Laboratory and in 1978 was moved to City Island in Sarasota. She resumed work with the lab as a consultant in 1986 and later became its director emeritus.

In 1968 she joined the University of Maryland, where she became a full professor and senior research scientist, taught for decades and became professor emeritus in 1992. She received many honorary degrees and awards.

Her second book, “The Lady and the Sharks” (1969), explored the behavior and physiology of sharks and other marine life and her experiences as a diver, biologist and teacher. With Ann McGovern, a biographer of Dr. Clark, she also wrote “Desert Benealth the Sea” (1991).

Over the years, Dr. Clark made more than 70 deep dives in submersibles, once to 12,000 feet. She found whale sharks, the world’s largest fish, 3,200 feet down, and sharks with six pairs of gills (most have five pairs) in the deep sea off Bermuda. She developed a shark repellent from an exudate of flatfish called the Red Sea Moses sole and taught sharks, once thought to be untrainable, to perform whole sequences of tasks.

“Sharks are among the most perfectly constructed creatures in nature,” she said. “Some forms have survived for two hundred million years.”

In 2004, after Dr. Clark injured her Achilles’ heel in a dive, doctors discovered she had lung cancer. She stopped diving temporarily, but the cancer went into remission. In 2009, she celebrated her 87th birthday in a submersible 900 feet under the surface of Lake Tahoe. She did it again when she turned 88.

Correction: February 26, 2015
An earlier version of this obituary misstated part of the name of an institution where Dr. Clark did research early in her career. It is the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, not Institute. Because of an editing error, the earlier version also misstated the institution’s affiliation at the time Dr. Clark was there, in the 1940s. While it was part of the University of California, it was not part of the University of California, San Diego, which was not established until 1960.

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. . . .AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT: “RIVER DEEP, MOUNTAIN HIGH” (MAY, 1966)

 

I admire Tina Turner.

Her indomitable will to survive, and survive she has. She thrived, excelled, and overcame so much.

Here are two live versions of one of my favourites, “River Deep, Mountain High”:  Ike & Tina Turner – “River Deep, Mountain High” 1971 (including intro) and Tina Turner – “River Deep, Mountain High”, recorded live at Hippodrom, Sopot, Poland on August 15th 2000.. Unlike the studio version of this hit, these performances have  Ms. Turner wowing the audience.

The dancing onto the stage; the fashions; the wigs; Ike’s process (okay, the wig); those moves; the Ikettes.

The one and only Tina Turner!

Enjoy.

RIVER DEEP, MOUNTAIN HIGH

Sung by Tina Turner

Written by Phil Spector, Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich

When I was a little girl
I had a rag doll
Only doll I’ve ever owned
Now I love you just the way I loved that
rag doll
But only now my love has grown

And it gets stronger, in every way
And it gets deeper, let me say
And it gets higher, day by day

And do I love you my oh my
Yeh river deep mountain high
If I lost you would I cry
Oh how I love you baby, baby, baby, baby

When you were a young boy
Did you have a puppy
That always followed you around
Well I’m gonna be as faithful as that puppy
No I’ll never let you down

Cause it grows stronger, like a river flows
And it gets bigger baby, and heaven knows
And it gets sweeter baby, as it grows

And do I love you my oh my
Yeh river deep, mountain high
If I lost you would I cry
Oh how I love you baby, baby, baby, baby

If I lost you would I cry
Oh how I love you baby, baby, baby, baby

I love you baby like a flower loves the
spring
And I love you baby just like Tina loves to
sing
And I love you baby like a school boy loves
his pet
And I love you baby, river deep mountain
high
Oh yeah you’ve gotta believe me
River Deep, Mountain High
Do I love you my oh my, oh baby
River deep, mountain high
If I lost you would I cry
Oh how I love you baby, baby, baby, baby

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IN REMEMBRANCE: 2-22-2015

ANNE MOODY, AUTHOR OF ‘COMING OF AGE IN MISSISSIPPI’

Anne Moody in 1963 being harassed alongside John Salter and Joan Trumpauer at a Woolworth’s. Credit Fred Blackwell/Jackson Daily News, via Associated Press

Her death was announced on the website of Representative Bennie G. Thompson, Democrat of Mississippi. Ms. Moody had had dementia in recent years.

Published in 1968, “Coming of Age in Mississippi” was Ms. Moody’s only work of nonfiction, and one of just two books she published during her lifetime. In unadorned, unflinching prose, it narrated her life from her early childhood through her involvement in the civil rights movement as a young woman.

Reviewing the memoir in The New York Times Book Review, Senator Edward M. Kennedy wrote that it “brings to life the sights and smells and suffering of rural poverty in a way seldom available to those who live far away.” He added: “Anne Moody’s powerful and moving book is a timely reminder that we cannot now relax in the struggle for sound justice in America or in any part of America. We would do so at our peril.”

Anne Moody in 1969. Credit Jack Schrier

A daughter of sharecroppers, Essie Mae Moody was born on Sept. 15, 1940, in Centreville, Miss.; she began calling herself Anne in her teens. As a girl, she cleaned white neighbors’ houses to help support her family.

After attending Natchez Junior College on a basketball scholarship, the young Ms. Moody enrolled in Tougaloo College, a historically black institution near Jackson, Miss., from which she received a bachelor’s degree in 1964. During these years she was active in civil rights efforts in Mississippi, working with the Congress of Racial Equality, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee.

In 1963, Ms. Moody and another activist, Joan Trumpauer, were part of a racially mixed group in a sit-in at a Woolworth’s lunch counter in Jackson. As a widely reproduced news photograph shows, a white mob poured condiments the protesters as they sat praying at the counter.

“I was snatched from my stool by two high school students,” Ms. Moody recounted in her memoir. “I was dragged about 30 feet toward the door by my hair when someone made them turn me loose.” She continued:

“The mob started smearing us with ketchup, mustard, sugar, pies and everything on the counter. Soon Joan and I were joined by John Salter, but the moment he sat down he was hit on the jaw with what appeared to be brass knuckles. Blood gushed from his face and someone threw salt into the open wound.”

Ms. Moody’s 1968 book “Coming of Age in Mississippi.” Credit Dell

In the 1960s Ms. Moody moved to New York, where she wrote “Coming of Age in Mississippi.” She lived quietly for decades, granting no interviews and holding a series of non-writing jobs, including as a counselor in a New York City antipoverty program, before returning to Mississippi.

Ms. Moody’s marriage to Austin Straus ended in divorce. Her survivors, according to Mr. Thompson’s office, include her son, Sascha Straus; four sisters, Adline Moody, Virginia Gibson, Frances Jefferson and Vallery Jefferson; and three brothers, Ralph Jefferson, James Jefferson and Kenneth Jefferson.

Her other book, “Mr. Death,” published in 1975, is a slender collection of short stories for young people on the theme of mortality.

In the 2014 edition of the reference work Contemporary Authors Online, an autobiographical statement from Ms. Moody illuminates both her departure from the civil rights movement and her comparative silence as a writer:

“In the beginning I never really saw myself as a writer,” she said. “I was first and foremost an activist in the civil rights movement in Mississippi.”

However, Ms. Moody continued, “I came to see through my writing that no matter how hard we in the movement worked, nothing seemed to change.” She added: “We were like an angry dog on a leash that had turned on its master. It could bark and howl and snap, and sometimes even bite, but the master was always in control.”

SOURCE

I read Ms. Moody’s memoir years ago and her heartfelt writing left quite an impression on me.

Ms. Moody lived during a time when the world for both Black and White citizens was changing:  change for the good for many White people; little to no change for black people. In the year 2015, the low value of black life is still ongoing.

I honor all that Ms. Moody and the many young Black and White people did who fought for a better life for me and the rest of America.

She will be missed.

Rest in peace, Ms. Anne Moody.

Rest in peace.

************************************************

LESLEY GORE, TEENAGE VOICE OF HEARTBREAK

Lesley Gore in May 1964 with a flower-covered record at her 18th birthday party at the Delmonico Hotel in New York. Credit Marty Lederhandler/Associated Press

Lois Sasson, her partner of 33 years, said Ms. Gore died of lung cancer at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital.

With songs like “It’s My Party,” “Judy’s Turn to Cry” and the indelibly defiant 1964 single “You Don’t Own Me” — all recorded before she was 18 — Ms. Gore made herself the voice of teenage girls aggrieved by fickle boyfriends, moving quickly from tearful self-pity to fierce self-assertion.

“You Don’t Own Me,” written by John Madara and David White, originally reached No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100. It has been repeatedly rerecorded and revived by performers including Dusty Springfield, Joan Jett and the cast of the 1996 movie “The First Wives Club.”

“When I heard it for the first time, I thought it had an important humanist quality,” Ms. Gore told The Minneapolis Star-Tribune in 2010. “As I got older, feminism became more a part of my life and more a part of our whole awareness, and I could see why people would use it as a feminist anthem. I don’t care what age you are — whether you’re 16 or 116 — there’s nothing more wonderful than standing on the stage and shaking your finger and singing, ‘Don’t tell me what to do.’ ”

The singer in 2007. Credit Richard Drew/Associated Press

Ms. Gore was born Lesley Sue Goldstein on May 2, 1946, in Brooklyn. She grew up in Tenafly, N.J., eager to become a singer. She had just turned 16, a junior in high school, when her vocal coach had her make some piano-and-voice recordings. Those demos, with a youthful brightness in her voice, reached the producer Quincy Jones, who was then an A&R man at Mercury Records. He became her producer and mentor.

Ms. Gore recorded “It’s My Party” on March 30, 1963, and when Mr. Jones discovered that Phil Spector and the Crystals were also recording the song, he rush-released it within a week. It reached No. 1 and was followed onto the charts by “Judy’s Turn To Cry” — a sequel to “It’s My Party” that gets the boyfriend back — and other tales of teen romance like “She’s a Fool,” “That’s the Way Boys Are” and “Maybe I Know,” as well as “You Don’t Own Me.”

Ms. Gore was featured — with James Brown, the Rolling Stones, the Supremes and Marvin Gaye — in the 1964 concerts at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium that were documented as the “T.A.M.I. Show.” She also had moderate hits with some of the first Marvin Hamlisch songs to be recorded: “Sunshine, Lollipops and Rainbows” in 1965 and “California Nights” in 1967.

Yet at the peak of her pop career Ms. Gore was in school full time, majoring in English and American literature at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, N.Y., where she graduated in 1968. She played an occasional television show or concert on weekends or during vacations.

“It would be very foolish of me to leave school to go into such an unpredictable field on a full-time basis,” she told an interviewer at the time.

Ms. Gore’s string of hits ended when girl-group pop gave way to psychedelia. But she kept performing — in movies, on television, on theater and club stages. She appeared in the 1960s “Batman” television series as the Pink Pussycat, one of Catwoman’s sidekicks.

Ms. Gore did not write her early hits. But after she was dropped by Mercury, she worked on becoming a songwriter. She moved to California in 1970, and her 1972 album, “Someplace Else Now,” was full of songs she wrote herself or with the lyricist Ellen Weston.

She reconnected with Mr. Jones for the 1975 album “Love Me by Name,” also filled with her own songs and drawing on guest performers including Herbie Hancock. But it, too, was largely ignored, as was “The Canvas Can Do Miracles,” an album of versions of 1970s pop hits released in 1982.

“Out Here on My Own,” a song Ms. Gore wrote with her brother, Michael Gore, for the soundtrack of the movie “Fame,” became a hit for Irene Cara in 1980 and was nominated for an Academy Award.

Ms. Gore lived in New York City. Besides Ms. Sasson, she is survived by her brother and her mother, Ronny Gore.

Ms. Gore returned to New York City in 1980 and continued to sing her oldies on the nostalgia circuit. She also performed in musical theater, including a stint in the Broadway production of “Smokey Joe’s Cafe.” She worked in television, hosting episodes of “In the Life,” a PBS newsmagazine series about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. In 2005, she came out publicly as gay.

Her 2005 album, “Ever Since,” was full of reflective grown-up songs in cabaret style, along with a bitterly moody remake of “You Don’t Own Me.” Television shows picked up some of its tracks: “Better Angels” was heard on “C.S.I.,” and “Words We Don’t Say” was played on “The L Word.”

Ms. Gore was a headliner in 2011 at “She’s Got The Power,” a Lincoln Center Out of Doors concert devoted to the girl-group era. In 2012, “You Don’t Own Me” returned during the presidential election, as a feminist get-out-the-vote video. As it begins, Ms. Gore appears, announcing, “I’m Lesley Gore, and I approve this message.”

In recent years, Ms. Gore had been working on a memoir and a Broadway show based on her life.

SOURCE

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LOUIS JORDAN, SUAVE STAR IN EUROPE AND HOLLYWOOD

Louis Jourdan and Leslie Caron as the heroine in Vincente Minnelli’s musical “Gigi” (1958). Credit Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

His official biographer, Olivier Minne, announced the death.

Mr. Jourdan (his name was pronounced Lew-EE zhor-DON) had a reserved, quiet manner that lent his performances an aura of mystery and even of melancholy and that served him well in both sympathetic and unsympathetic roles.

His durability was remarkable, considering that his European screen career as well as his American one began inauspiciously.

Born Louis Henri Gendre in Marseilles on June 19, 1921, Mr. Jourdan attended acting school in Paris and was tapped for a role in the film “Le Corsaire,” directed by Marc Allégret. But the outbreak of World War II interrupted the production, and the movie was never completed.

He appeared in several films during the Occupation, often directed by Mr. Allégret, for whom he also sometimes worked as an assistant director. After his father, a hotelier, was arrested by the Gestapo, Mr. Jourdan joined the Resistance.

Mr. Jourdan as Prince Kamal Khan, the villain in the 1983 James Bond film “Octopussy.” Credit MGM/UA Entertainment

After the war he went to the United States and attracted the attention of the producer David O. Selznick, who cast him in the courtroom drama “The Paradine Case” (1947), very much against the wishes of the director, Alfred Hitchcock.

Mr. Jourdan’s character, a slightly sinister valet suspected of murdering his employer, was originally conceived as a rough, earthy type, which Mr. Jourdan was clearly not. Mr. Hitchcock referred to him as “a pretty-pretty boy” and complained that his casting “destroyed the whole point of the film.” (There appeared to be no lingering antagonism: Mr. Jourdan was among the mourners at Mr. Hitchcock’s funeral in 1980.)

Mr. Jourdan was more fortunate in his next Hollywood assignment, playing a concert pianist who seduces and abandons Joan Fontaine in Max Ophuls’s elegant romantic tragedy “Letter From an Unknown Woman” (1948). It was a role that allowed him to use his silky, hooded charm to memorably ambiguous effect, and to create, for one of the few times in his long career, a truly complex character — a hollow man who comes, in the end, to understand how much his hollowness has cost him.

The next year he won the important role of Rodolphe, the heroine’s lover, in Vincente Minnelli’s film version of “Madame Bovary.” For the next decade he appeared in many high-profile, big-budget studio pictures, usually performing the somewhat limited function of embodying Hollywood’s idea of the dashing, cultured, worldly European man.

His greatest success in this mode came when he starred opposite Leslie Caron in Mr. Minnelli’s musical “Gigi” (1958), a major hit that won nine Academy Awards, including best picture. (Mr. Jourdan was not nominated, for this or for any other movie in his career; “Gigi” did, however, earn him a Golden Globe for best actor in a comedy or musical.)

Between Hollywood jobs, Mr. Jourdan would occasionally return to Europe to make films, among them Jacques Becker’s “Rue de l’Estrapade” (1953). And in 1954 he took a shot at Broadway, playing the lead in a stage adaptation of André Gide’s novel “The Immoralist.” Although he received good reviews, his performance was partly eclipsed by that of a striking young actor in the supporting cast: James Dean.

After the 1950s, the Continental types that had been Mr. Jourdan’s bread and butter fell out of favor in American movies. For the last 30 years of his performing life Mr. Jourdan — still attractive and still impeccably dignified, but looking a bit more world-weary with every passing year — was cast more often as a Prince of Darkness than as Prince Charming. He played the oily Dr. Anton Arcane in Wes Craven’s “Swamp Thing” (1982) and its 1989 sequel, “The Return of Swamp Thing,” and the evil Kamal Khan, from whom James Bond is obliged to save the world, in “Octopussy” (1983).

Mr. Jourdan had the opportunity to play more nuanced villains on television. He was a guest murderer on “Columbo” in 1978, a year after he gave a seductive and chilling performance in the title role of “Count Dracula” on the BBC.

He was named as a chevalier, or knight, of the French Legion of Honor in 2010.

Mr. Jourdan was, by all accounts, well liked in Hollywood, but he kept his private life private. In 1946 he married Berthe Frederique; they remained married until her death last year. The couple had one child, Louis Henry Jourdan Jr., who died of a drug overdose in 1981, at 29. A brother, Pierre Jourdan, who was an actor and a theater director in France, died in 2007.

Louis Jourdan made his last appearance on screen in 1992, in the caper film “Year of the Comet.” He played the bad guy.

SOURCE

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FROM THE ARCHIVES

Buster Keaton, Poker-Faced Comedian, Dies at 70

(Feb. 1, 1966)

Arthur Ashe, Tennis Star, Dies at 49

(Feb. 6, 1993)

Hussein, King Who Took Risks, Dies at 63

(Feb. 7, 1999)

Iris Murdoch, Novelist and Philosopher, Dies at 79

(Feb. 8, 1999)

Alex Haley, Author of ‘Roots,’ Dies at 70

(Feb. 10, 1992)

Charles Schulz, ‘Peanuts’ Creator, Dies at 77

(Feb. 12, 2000)

Ethel Merman, Queen of Musicals, Dies at 76

(Feb. 15, 1984)

Geronimo, Apache Chief, Dies

(Feb. 17, 1909)

Alfred P. Sloan Jr., G.M. Leader, Dies at 90

(Feb. 17, 1966)

Thelonious Monk, Jazz Composer, Dies at 64

(Feb. 17, 1982)

J. Robert Oppenheimer, Atom Bomb Pioneer, Dies at 62

(Feb. 18, 1967)

Deng Xiaoping, China’s Political Wizard, Dies at 92

(Feb. 19, 1997)

Frederick Douglass, Anti-Slavery Crusader, Dies

(Feb. 20, 1895)

Chester W. Nimitz, Who Built Pacific Fleet, Dies at 80

(Feb. 20, 1966)

George Ellery Hale, Astronomer, Dies at 69

(Feb. 21, 1938)

Elijah Muhammad, Black Muslim Leader, Dies at 77

(Feb. 25, 1975)

Mabel Cratty, Y.W.C.A. Leader, Dies at 60

(Feb. 27, 1928)

Henry R. Luce, Creator of Time-Life Empire, Dies at 68

(Feb. 28, 1967)

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CARTOON OF THE DAY: WHAT THE PRESIDENT SAID ON THE MUSLIM RELIGION

obama on muslim religion

Cartoon by Nick Anderson of the Houston Chronicle, February 19, 2015.

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