Now in its fifth season, American Idol aired Tuesday night to much fanfare. Truth be told, I was there front-and-center with a group of friends and we laughed at most of the talent-less kids who ran through the audition process. The laughter quickly turned to smirks, and then angry frown lines when Simon Cowell, the British judge known for his mean streak and esteem-demolishing wit, began an even crueler and bigoted line of verbal lashing on several contestants. What it boiled down to was homophobia at its worst and an obvious disdain for the overweight participants. With a Nielsen audience well in the millions, Cowell gave America the impression that it’s okay – even hysterically funny – to suggest a young man shave and become a woman and that his hope for season five is that the stage is larger to sustain the girth of the new, meatier contestants. At a time when 2/3 of Americans are overweight and homophobia is at an all-time high for such a progressive country, this behavior is intolerable. It is not okay to blurt out comments that are hurtful, bigoted, small-minded and ignorant for the sake of laughs – especially when impressionable teens are watching. As a fan of the show I was at best, disturbed and disappointed that someone didn’t step-in and set Cowell straight.
Memoirs of A Geisha; Love Waits
If you have a soft-spot for love, Memoirs of A Geisha will win you over and leave you teary eyed. Ziyi Zhang is Chiyo, sold to a Geisha house at the age of nine as a servant who is transformed into Sayuri, the most coveted Geisha in Japan. The story takes place in depression-era Japan and shows the cruelty endured by the youngster on her road to the prominent position of becoming a Geisha. It is her childhood encounter with The Chairman, Ken Watanabe that changes the youngster and gives her hope and strength to overcome the many obstacles on her way to stardom. Sayuri vows to lock away her heart for the Chairman and at the end of the film it is revealed whether their love can withstand all things and live on forever. The film is completely in English – no subtitles - and this sometimes leads to cheesy translations. If you’re not into romantic drama, wait for the DVD, but if you could use a film that pulls at the chords of your hopeful heart go ahead and spend the big screen cash.
Children are impressionable. What powerful negative impression did an adult make in your life that you feel/felt you needed to overcome? How did that impression change your interaction with your children? What words or comments have you vowed never/always to use when interacting with your own children?
Keep passin’ the open windows…