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Inspiration

Inspiration

Apr 28, 2015

I had a column ready to go today and I accidentally deleted it. It now sits in that dimension where missing socks from the dryer go and I don’t think it is coming back. I have decided to share a previously published column that I enjoyed. After this I will be taking a month off of my writing duties for personal reasons and I will be back full force in June. This column was originally published in January 2014. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it. I will see you in June! Alexandra Elaine Michaels xoxo I know I usually focus on one character but this week we are going to mix it up a little. I am going to list a few movie bad girls that are not only self-empowered but really have a quality that I find inspiring and who make me want to be a better person by the lessons I’ve learned from them. I will give you the character, the movie and the trait I admire. I hope you’ll re-visit or watch some of these movies for the first time. Enjoy. These bad girls are a special breed.   Tracy Turnblad  “Hairspray” (1988) (2007)                     Tracy Turnblad is not your average teen. She comes from a family that doesn’t have much money although she isn’t really aware of it and this girl loves life. She is the girl that is not in the popular cliques but she doesn’t really notice this either. She isn’t envious of the other kids. The only thing some of them have that she desires is a spot on a local dance show that airs after school everyday. Tracy manages to get on the show and then the fireworks fly. Tracy being the girl she is (she likes everyone for being themselves) makes friends with some of the black kids in school and she realizes they are not being treated equally only because their skin is dark. Tracy wages a small war for equality in a city full  of prejudice and stands strong even risking jail time because she so firmly believes...

The Wonderful World of YouTube

The Wonderful World of YouTube

Apr 21, 2015

We are putting the bad girls aside this week. Why you ask? I’ll tell you. While I was in the car today I had the radio tuned to “Drew Garabo Live!” on 102.5. During the show he played the audio from a video and I found myself so moved by the clip that I was crying while trying to navigate through a rain storm. The clip involved a 19 year old boy who has autism. He got a paid apprenticeship at a hotel. This will be his first job. The joy in his voice turned me into a blubbering woman trying not to wreck the car. It was a beautiful clip and it got me thinking of all the different kinds of clips you can find on YouTube. They are all like mini-movies. Sometimes they will pull at your heart strings, they may amaze you or you can be laughing until your sides hurt. I have decided to share some of my favorite videos I have found on YouTube over the years. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. If you don’t blame Drew. He inspired this column with audio from a single video (which I could not locate on YouTube). If you are in the Tampa area tune in to Drew Garabo Live. I am not getting a thing for giving his show a plug, I honestly love it. He is on 102.5 FM every weekday afternoon from 3 until 7 and he provides some seriously entertaining talk radio. Now on with the clips. When you are done take a little time and explore YouTube for yourself. You never know what you might find. Orcas Playing in a Boat’s Wake The first time I saw this video I was floored. This is an encounter with nature that I would kill for. I sat and watched in amazement as a pod of killer whales were feeling frisky and playing in the wave wash as the people on the boat were enjoying an afternoon cruise. The woman on the boat said it best when she uttered “Jack Hanna, eat your heart out” Enjoy this awe inspiring slice of nature. Music that will...

A Preview of Coming Attractions

A Preview of Coming Attractions

Apr 20, 2015

I had a different column in mind for today, however I have changed my mind. This week people everywhere have been very excited by the premier of the new trailer for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. I am not one of those people. It did get me thinking about trips to the movies and the trailers for upcoming films being one of the most exciting parts of any trip to the local theater. If I missed any of the previews that trip to the movies was a less satisfying experience. Sometimes the previews are dead on and the sense of anticipation started by the trailer will continue to build until you get to see the actual film. At other times the trailer is far better than the film that is being advertised. I have gathered some of my favorite movie previews from over the years to share. Sometimes I got everything and more when I saw the actual movies and at other times they should have just released the 2 minutes preview instead of the terrible film they actually got you to go spend your hard earned money on. So sit back, relax and enjoy a preview of coming attractions. “The Blue Lagoon” (1980) When I saw the trailer for this it was at that age when hormones are kicking in as we develop into our teenage years. I really wanted to see this movie because Christopher Atkins was nearly naked in the preview and I really wanted to be allowed at the time (in a fairly innocent way) to admire his body. Being the movie was “R” rated I needed an adult to take me and I got my wish. Imagine my surprise (and to be frankly honest) delight that he went full frontal in the movie and I got to see his privates. I think he was my first big celebrity crush. The movie was a beautiful love story and is still a great movie today. Seeing Chris Atkins full frontal now is not very exciting now like it was when I was 13. Sometimes becoming a grown up sucks…lol.   “Bug” (1975) This creepy little gem was the last film by...

Movies that are so bad they’re awesome!

Movies that are so bad they’re awesome!

Apr 14, 2015

Someone on Facebook yesterday put up a post asking everyone to list their favorite bad movie and that got me thinking: Ever sit down to watch a movie and it was so bad that it was great? I love a good/bad movie. These movies become our guilty pleasures and we might even be a little embarrassed if someone found out that we liked one of them. I actually don’t hide it. I love bad films along with the good. It is one of my joys in life to share these movies with others and hope they see the charm in them that I do.  These are the movies that filmmakers were very serious about when they made them and somehow they ended up campy, over the top and at times the acting in them was less than stellar. I have selected 4 of these films for my column this week. Although the movies might only win the Razzie Awards they do have one thing in common: Kick ass women characters that I cherish watching. Now grab some popcorn and a soda and sit back and relax, this is going to be bad….really bad, and you’re going to love it. This is Movie Bad Girl of the Week: The Great Ladies of Bad Cinema Edition.  First up is one of my favorite bad sci-fi films. Shot in 1959 on a shoe string budget and not released until 1962 I gladly give you: Virginia Leith as Jan Compton in “The Brain That Wouldn’t Die” Dr. Bill Cortner (Herb Evers) is a brilliant surgeon although his methods are a bit unorthodox. He has been experimenting with keeping human tissue alive for transplants. He is determined to make a name for himself. He has been working by trial and error and midway through the film we will meet one of his mistakes. On a night like any other Bill and his fiancee’ Jan are out on a drive when they have a terrible accident and poor Jan is decapitated. Bill who has been working with keeping human tissue alive collects her head and using all his skill manages to revive it. Now Jan’s head sits in a tray in...

“My Role Models Growing Up” or “A Look at Some Retro Bad Girls”

“My Role Models Growing Up” or “A Look at Some Retro Bad Girls”

Apr 7, 2015

When we are growing up we watch television, movies and sports. As children we sometimes like what we see in a person and want to grow up to be just like them. It was no different in my day except we only had about 5 channels to choose from. We did not have cable or movies at our fingertips (there weren’t even VCR’s when most of these programs originally aired) but we had our heroes and we wanted to be like them. Who did you want to be when you grew up? We all had someone that we wanted to be just like. For people my age this will be a pleasant walk down memory lane. For my younger readers, you may not even be aware of who some of these ladies are. You would probably find the shows lame by today’s standards. I assure you, in my day, these ladies kicked ass! This is Movie Bad Girl of the Week: Television Edition: Retro Ladies Who Were Beautiful and Tough First up on our Retro Bad Girl Countdown: Sgt. “Pepper” Anderson  “Police Woman” (1974-1978) Once upon a time the only women you saw on TV were mothers, wives, maids, secretaries,school teachers and maybe waitresses. “Police Woman” was groundbreaking television because the lead was a cop. She was beautiful and she was tough. This was practically unheard of. A strong woman and the show was about her. This gave little girls dreams that they didn’t just have to stand in a kitchen and bake cakes and I am sure more than one boy’s heart fluttered at this sexy lady. Pepper had an exciting career. She was a member of the L.A.P.D., C.C.U division. (Criminal Conspiracy Unit). She was part of an undercover team and many times went undercover in dangerous situations as a hooker, prison inmate or nurse just to name a few. They investigated all kinds of crimes from murder, to theft and blackmail to rape and drugs. The guest stars on the show were also top caliber including Sandra Dee, Patty Duke, William Shatner and Ruby Dee just to name a few. There was even a doll produced where young girls could create their own...

Mind-Blowing Talent: A list of underrated actresses.

Mind-Blowing Talent: A list of underrated actresses.

Mar 31, 2015

We watch movies and television for enjoyment, education and entertainment. We get lost in the worlds that we see on the screen. It is up to the actors to breathe life into the characters we are going on the journey with. You know the stars’ names, for example: Angelina Jolie, Kate Hudson, Julianne Moore and Sandra Bullock just to name a few. When you watch these movies there are always supporting characters (and sometimes a lead that is not well known) played by very talented women. Certain ones you may know the names of, others you may recognize as that woman from (insert title here). This column is about that breed of  lady. Actresses that are at the top of their game although you may only recognize them by sight. You may not know their names but you should. This is a small list of some of the best actresses in Hollywood in my opinion and they take us on wonderful adventures. This is Movie Bad Girl of the Week: Underrated Actress Edition!  Missi Pyle is probably one of the busiest women in Hollywood today. You’ve seen her in dozens of films and/or TV shows. She is well versed in acting and can tackle dramatic or comedy roles and I must admit her comedic timing is impeccable. You may not have been familiar with her name although this tall and beautiful woman is one you recognize on sight. Her first appearance was in 1996 in a film titled “The Cottonwood” and she hasn’t stopped acting since.  If you want to become familiar with Missi and some of the incredible characters she has played here are a few selections out of her filmography: Television: Mad About You: 2 episodes:The Final Frontier Part 1 (1999) The Final Frontier Part 2 (1999) The Drew Carey Show: 1 episode: Drew’s Reunion (1999) My Name is Earl: 1 episode: Broke Joy’s Fancy Figurine (2005) Heroes: 2 episodes: Chapter Fifteen ‘Run!’ (2007) Chapter Sixteen ‘Unexpected’ (2007) Movies: “Galaxy Quest” (1999) Laliari “Josie and the Pussycats” (2001) Alexandra Cabot “Bringing Down the House” (2003) Ashley “50 First Dates” (2004) Noreen “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” (2005) Mrs. Beauregarde “Gone Girl” (2014) Ellen Abbott Here...

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