Friday, July 30, 2010

Ellen Degeneres Quits AMERICAN IDOL

Boy this didn't last long, but Ellen DeGeneres has decided to call it quits as a judge from AMERICAN IDOL after just one season, noting that "It was hard to judge people and sometimes hurt their feelings". This leaves a second vacancy on the judges panel, as Simon Cowell is also departing. Sir Elton John, Stephen Tyler, Harry Connick, Jr. and Justin Timberlake have all been mentioned as possible replacement judges for Cowell. In recent days, Steven Tyler has expressed renewed interest in taking over for Cowell.

Although the May finale ratings were the lowest in the program's history with a little over 24 million viewers, the show still remains the most popular one on U.S. television. A former paint salesman, Lee DeWyze won a controversial victory over Crystal Boxersox during that finale.

With ratings beginning to sag, AMERICAN IDOL will hope to freshen-up it's appeal this coming season with new celebrity judges.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Trike Chopper For Less Than $2200!

Evo motorcycles has a real deal for you, a full sized 150cc chopper trike for real cheap. It sure looks impressive for just a hair less than $2200 bucks. Hard to believe that anyone can offer this much value for so little, but Evo has great deals on motor bikes of all sorts including scooters, ATVs, you name it.

The chopper is actually a custom model of a Chinese built Lifan motorcycle with extra wheels. It's called the "Pizza Boy Trike". However, it's doubtful that many Pizza boys will roar up and bring you a pepperoni special with this great toy.

In the 1960's iconic figures such as Ed "Big Daddy" Roth got into building chopper trikes. And for a time the chopper trike was sort of hot, but started to fade as Ed Roth fell out of favor with Revell models when he closely associated himself as a friend of the Hell's Angels motorcycle club because of his custom trikes. However, in recent years more and more models of three wheeled scooters and motorcycles have been emerging on the market, creating a comeback for the three wheeled versions of bikes and scooters.

While the Evo version of a chopper trike only has a 150cc engine, it still has a cool look. And is still capable of freeway legal speeds and completely street legal. Heck, for $2200 you can't go wrong on this cool toy.

Justin Bieber Becomes New Target For Westboro Baptist Church Crackpots

Move over Lady Gaga and dead American soldiers, the complete crackpots from Westboro Baptist Church have added a new protest target to their list, 16 year old Canadian pop sensation, Justin Bieber. As you might recall, this outrageous personality cult led by sick and twisted preacher, Fred Phelps, has been the target of lawsuits and other legal actions for staging outrageous and offensive protests at the funerals of American servicemen claiming that those deaths are somehow the result of God punishing America for allowing homosexuality. The only problem is that there are 191 nations in the world, all with homosexuals, with few at war, so where's Fred Phelps' vision of God there? But sick persons don't bother to think very much.

It's not clear why the wacko group led by Phelps has chosen Justin Bieber of all persons as a protest target, but it all seems fitting for a group of kooks who make up their own self-parodies. Other than being good looking and a heart throb to millions of preteen girls, it's hard to conjecture how Justin Bieber is somehow the moral downfall of society or a punishment from God equal to snakes, frogs or locusts. He's probably more self than milk and less allergenic as well.

Mental illness takes on many forms.

Monday, July 26, 2010

70th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Set For August 1-15

Sturgis South Dakota will come alive for the biggest motorcycle rally event held in America, August 1-15. Thousands are expected to attend the huge fun event, giving the city of Sturgis an annual big economic windfall. Musicals acts as diverse as The Guess Who, Creedence Clearwater Revisited, ZZ Top, Eddie Money, Black Oak Arkansas, Confederate Railroad, Wolfmother, Stone Temple Pilots, The Kentucky Headhunters, 3 Doors Down, The Scorpions, Alice In Chains, Guns 'N" Roses, Doobie Brothers, Ice-T, Godsmack, Dokken and Dave Mason are all scheduled to perform. And comics such as Gallagher, Pee Wee Herman and X rated comic, Bag Lady Sue are also scheduled as well. Other entertainment will range from machine gun shooting

events , beauty and wet t-shirt contests to 50 mile bike rides. Topless Tuesday sound very titillating as well.

Besides the fun events, a half scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Wall will be displayed as well. And for the more spiritually inclined bike, a number of local churches will feature safe as milk events such as breakfasts.

A wide range of custom bike and trike events are scheduled along with a number of burnout and racing contests. You can also expect plenty of good cold beer to flow, to cool down the hot South Dakota August heat as well.

This Sturgis rally will the 70th held, and sounds like the biggest and best ever. If you like bikes, babes and beer, then the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally sounds like the perfect vacation. Better book your hotel room now.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Zsa Zsa Gabor In Critical Condition

93 year old entertainer Zsa Zsa Gabor is reportedly in critical condition less than one week after undergoing hip replacement surgery. Gabor had been partially paralyzed after a 2002 automobile accident and was willing to take the risks for a patient her age to undergo the risky surgery. The husband of the actress, Prince Frederic Von Anhalt stated to media sources that her condition isn't "looking good".

The actress could sure use your prayers and best wishes right now.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Simon Monjack & Brittany Murphy Had Same Cause Of Death

The coroner for Los Angeles county has released his report on the cause of death for Simon Monjack. Strangely, he died of the same identical conditions as his wife Brittany Murphy, such as severe anemia, acute pneumonia and enough prescription drugs present in his blood to be possibly lethal.

Strangely, actress Brittany Murphy had died just five months earlier of the same conditions as outlined in the coroner's report.

Some close to Monjack felt that he died of a broken heart, though. Often soul-mates have a history of passing away close to one another such as couples married for a long time.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

How Servpro Treats Your Valuables

An expensive antique Crystal lamp, Julius Caesar bust with pedestal, and large $550 Royal Doulton dog porcelain.
If you want your most valuable items and antiques destroyed, then be sure to hire Servpro. They're experts in property destruction.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The First Automobile 1495?

Some history experts believe that the 1495 design by Leonardo Da Vinci was the first automobile. It operated similar to a wind-up clock and would power itself. The design was nothing short of incredible, designed centuries before a steam powered automobile of the 1700's and late 1800's European automobiles such as Peugeots.

Tommy James Still Rockin' At 61

Tommy James(born Thomas Gregory Jackson) was one of the greatest American lead singers and of the 1960's with a huge string of highly successful singles with his group, The Shondells. "Crimson & Clover", "Mony, Mony", "Hank Panky", "I Think We're Alone Now", "Crystal Blue Persuasion" and many more huge selling hit singles. Although the group had roots that went back to 1959, in 1966 "Hank Panky" became the group's first surprise #1 hit.

Moving from a mere pop music act, the band began to adopt psychedelic songs and bizarre new musical effects in their songs such as "Crimson & Clover" enough that they were invited to play at the Woodstock music festival, but the band declined that invitation. However, drug use by Tommy James resulted in a serious incident during a 1970 concert in which the singer collapsed and was actually declared dead during the show. But the singer recovered, however it pretty much marked the end of the act as the band began to tour without James. James embarked on a solo career and had a big hit with "Dragin' The Line", but his other singles were far less successful although he continued to write, perform and record demos and other recordings. But the high-point of the band was during the 60's.

Tommy James has remained a huge influence on the music industry with artists such as Joan Jett, Billy Idol and others recording cover versions of the band's hits. Strangely, artists of the punk and new wave genres have been greatly influenced by the hit songs of Tommy James and certainly consider him to be one of the greatest musical acts of all time. While certainly not a punk rock or new wave performer himself, James strangely became like a "godfather" to their music giving these genre performers a wealth of concepts to work with because of the garage band-like roots of the act.

James may not top the charts these days. In fact, he hasn't had a huge hit since the early 70's. However, he continues to perform and do music. He started in 1959 at just age 12, so he has no good reason to stop now.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The Strange Story Of THE RAT PATROL Death

Even though it only ran just two seasons, from 1966 to 1968, ABC's THE RAT PATROL was undoubtedly one of the best war dramas ever aired. Each episode involved a high risk raid and adventure by a gritty team of stone tough soldiers. But an accident in 1967 while filming the show strangely led to the death of the lead star years after the show was canceled.

Actor Christopher George had been a tough U.S. Marine during the Korean War. He was even forced to parachute from a plane during an aircraft incident. As an actor, George played the ultimate tough guy leader of four RAT PATROL soldiers who caused major league mayhem on missions every bit as daring as any James Bond mission. George was the son of Greek immigrants and enlisted in the military in 1948. George was a deeply religious man who was an altar boy in the Greek Orthodox Church and strongly considered entering the priesthood of that faith. George eventually became an actor after his military service ended though.

In 1967, there was a Jeep accident on set when actors Christopher George, Gary Raymond and Justin Tarr were all injured when a Jeep Tarr was during for a tight turn stunt rolled over. George suffered several injuries, however his back was badly strained, and other neck injuries including a tissue tear were present. His heart was also injured, which set the actor up for problems that would eventually prove to be fatal.

On November 28, 1983, years after the accident, the actor passed away from a heart attack, a delayed injury from the 1967 Jeep accident.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Totally Undignified Film Debuts: David Hasselhoff In REVENGE OF THE CHEERLEADERS

David Hasselhoff made a totally undignified film debut in 1976 back in the simply dreadful REVENGE OF THE CHEERLEADERS. This was a horrid sequel to the highly successful soft-core porn comedy, THE CHEERLEADERS. While the film did feature some fleeting moments of full female frontal nudity, it lacked the simulated sex scenes of the first film. But lengthy segments of awful dance sequences were peppered throughout the second film. Hasselhoff unfortunately danced in this film as well. And the result was indeed truly frightening.

Three films were made in THE CHEERLEADERS series, with THE SWINGING CHEERLEADERS, the third and final film. All three were examples of exploitation genre films, and each did relatively well considering the absurdly low budgets they were made on.

One of the highlights of REVENGE OF THE CHEERLEADERS was some brief appearance from comic magician, Carl Ballantine. Ballantine was once one of the goofy cast members of McHALE'S NAVY, and was one of the best comic moments of this film as the worst principal ever who sets fire to his office by accident during cooking.

Despite the sheer awfulness of this film, David Hasselhoff did manage to have a career left. That alone is a real achievement considering this real turkey.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Move Over Imelda Marcos, Singer Ciara Is The The New Shoe Queen

The wife of former Philippines dictator Ferdinand Marcos, Imelda, was well known for having one of the largest shoe collections in the world. Well, mover over Imelda, singer Ciara is now the new shoe queen in town. She brags about spending $11,000 one month buying footwear because she absolutely loves shoes. High heels, low heels, plain, crazy ones, all kind of shoes.

Ciara is also making a little more news for herself because of a controversial music video called "Ride" that's currently released. Yeah, but she's a major babe, so give her some understanding.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

James Cameron's Big Break

Few people know the story of how the great filmmaker James Cameron got his big break in films. But during the production of the low budget science fiction epic, BATTLE BEYOND THE STARS, for Roger Corman, Cameron was hired after the model maker was fired. Cameron was impressive for working a nearly sleepless schedule for weeks and using cheap materials such as spray painted McDonalds containers as parts of a spaceship interior.

The film was released in 1980 and quickly earned $11 million dollars, with a public appetite looking for more Science fiction after the huge success of the first STAR WARS episode. BATTLE BEYOND THE STARS effectively used spaceship scenes seen in at least two other science fiction films including SPACE RAIDERS.

BATTLE BEYOND THE SUN was a surprisingly good film, heavily borrowing the story from Akira Kurosawa's SEVEN SAMURAI and the western film, THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN. BATTLE BEYOND THE SUN was a western-styled science fiction epic of galactic hired guns banding together against a common enemy. BATTLE BEYOND THE SUN has former MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. star Robert Vaughn playing one of his toughest guy roles ever. He's a pure cold blooded gun for hire. And George Peppard plays a great space cowboy type character.

My recommendation is to rent this film, or better yet look for a DVD to own, and watch this great film over and over. James Cameron is a great filmmaker because this film gave him his big break in the industry. For such a small budget film, Cameron was able to put up an effective STARS WARS genre effort.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Lindsay Lohan Shows How To Influence A Judge

Lindsay Lohan is a real genius. She attended court with this none too subtle message for the judge painted on her fingernail. It helped to land her with a 90day jail sentence.

Holy Crap!: Priest Steals A Million To Fund Double Life

While many of his parishioners at Sacred Heart Church in Waterbury, CT loved Pastor Fr. Kevin Gray, none of them apparently knew that this priest actually stole $1 million from the church to fund a seven year lavish lifestyle of male escorts, expensive hotels and restaurants.

After the priest was transferred because of some unclear internal church reason, he became bitter towards the church and felt that the church "owed" him and began his seven year theft and sex campaign.

Despite a huge pile of evidence of his lavish spending with stolen funds. Many supporters of the priest showed up at the courthouse proclaiming him to be "100% innocent". Blind faith perhaps?

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

CBS TV Show Canceled Before It Even Aired

Political problems between a production company connected with 20th Century Fox and CBS have resulted in the cancellation of a new TV show, CHAOS, which was supposed to debut perhaps as a midseason series. Eric Close from WITHOUT A TRACE was a major supporting star in the series which now looks virtually unlikely to ever air now.

Boy that went fast!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Servpro: Looking For A Few Good Criminals & Vandals

Unfortunately my recent bad experience with Servpro, a national disaster cleanup and restoration service which is individually and locally owned and operated as a franchise business is far from the exception. In Atlanta, Georgia, lawyers from the law firm of Pate & Brody had to file a lawsuit against the local Servpro that was supposed to carefully remove sensitive files from a home business for safe keeping. Instead, a Servpro employee stole a box of sensitive papers so that they could pad their income through identity theft of the couple. While Servpro publicly claims that they do background checks on their employees, the truth according to these lawyers is that is was common knowledge that this particular Servpro would hire anyone, and ignore background checks.

The Servpro worker in the this Atlanta case withdrew more than $10,000 from the bank accounts of the couple they were entrusted to care for their belongings. Further, Servpro workers opened more than 60 credit card accounts using the stolen identity information.

In Michigan, a serious convicted felon was hired by Servpro and sent into clients homes where they had access to bank information, cash, jewelry and other valuables.

In Illinois, a local Servpro franchise double billed for the same work and overcharged an insurance company by at least $9,000. In addition, many valuables disappeared from the client who notified the police about probable employee theft by Servpro employees. This client claims to be out nearly $30,000 in serious losses including damage to the new home by careless Servpro employees.

In Tennessee, a local Servpro was billing clients and insurance companies high garbage disposal fees, however was actually illegally dumping this fire or flood cleanup damage debris into a local creek creating an environmental mess. After an investigation by the local ABC TV station, Servpro finally admitted to the illegal dumping allegations. Falling Water Creek in Tennessee contaminated this water system with both chemicals and debris, leading to both a state and police investigation of the company's business practices.

On the Internet bad reports about local Servpro franchises flourish. The experience of many unhappy customers tells the story of a company that is run very unprofessionally in many local franchises.

The local Servpro that was assigned to do my housefire cleanup was certainly no better. I have private detective software and a background check on one of the Servpro managers who gave me his business card proves a record with a theft citation by the police and other citations. As far as the other workers, I don't know about them. But when their boss has a criminal background, you can only guess.

Right away my mother's jewelry disappeared from a bedroom where no one was even doing the house cleanup work. And a silver set valued at about $1,000 quickly disappeared as well. Sensitive bank information of mine was found out in a dumpster contracted by Servpro, so was an entire filled plastic crate of DVDS, many of which were so new that they weren't viewed yet by me. A scanner connected to my business office computer had the lid opened, was smashed with a hammer, then the lid shut. A $1,000 crystal lamp was smashed inside the house by the Servpro vandals. New and mint unopened rare diecast cars that I won on auctions on Ebay were found in a dumpster by me. One of my good computer monitors was out on a balcony where Servpro workers intended to throw it off the balcony and smash it. A tall bust of Julius Caesar in my entrance hall had the head smashed in my a hammer. It was worth hundreds of dollars. Every chair to a beautiful 1952 vintage dining room set was thrown away. A giant mirror that belonged to a huge antique wood piece of furniture handcrafted in a prison was trashed and smashed by Serpro workers. A giant 1/3 scale Royal Doulton Afghan dog figure worth between $550 to $1200 was deliberated smashed with a hammer by Servpro employees.

One day I was working in the backroom were the fire was, and the Servpro workers didn't know that I was in the house, because it's a large house. I heard repeated sounds of glass being broken and laughter. I wondered what the heck was going on.

The fact of the matter is that Servpro lied to me that anything of value would be carefully salvaged and put in the Pod for safe keeping. Servpro put nothing in the Pod other than one brand new carpet still in the plastic tube that I complained in front of police was thrown in the dumpster by Servpro employees. I was told that only obvious garbage would be trashed, not quality items of value.

A number of religious books that I like to collect such as a beautiful hard cover edition of the Quran and some excellent hardcover Christian reference library books were thrown in the garbage like common trash. These books deserved to be treated with great respect and carefully boxed up for safe keeping, not treated like garbage.

So much of my computer is missing, including software discs and other parts, I wonder how I'll ever restart it. Some of my home theater receiver was trashed by Servpro some not. A perfectly good TV stand was thrown out by Servpro workers, capable of holding a a 40inch or larger digital TV.

Vandalism of the property of clients of Servpro is far from professional business conduct. But then again, a Servpro employee in Knoxville was arrested after he went on a vandalism spree of their offices after being fired. But if this company hires felons, identity thieves, people cited by police for theft as managers and other criminal types, hiring vandals is much farther removed.

One of the Servpro managers didn't much like the last post I wrote about my bad experience with the company. But why blame me. They acted really unprofessionally. And they called the police and had my brother arrested for telephone harassment after he made four phone calls to their business demanding that some boss contact us right away for all of the damage they caused that day when their workers were left unsupervised and went on a destruction rampage in my home. We wanted any further work to stop until this situation was called to their attention. After trashing so much of our home, the manager called and wanted a couple of shovels, a plastic waste bin and a respirator that they left behind. They were told that they could pick up their property. There was no problem. But once again Servpro made a big deal out of the matter and they sent the police to pick up just these items.

Speaking of shovels. Servpro employees actually used shovels on the hardwood floors in my home, creating thousands of dollars of new damages to the home beyond the fire damage.

A housefire or a flood is bad enough. But a bad disaster cleanup company can be much worse.

Friday, July 02, 2010

Firing Of A J Cook From CRIMINAL MINDS Unpopular With Fans

Fans of the very popular CBS crime drama CRIMINAL MINDS seem to be absolutely livid that Canadian-born actress A J Cook won't have her contract renewed. After an avalanche of fan mail, producers of the FBI crime drama will include the actress in two episodes to wind-up her characters role in the show. Likely, producers of the show plan some new character to fill in the role. But fans of the show could not be less happy about any changes, and have warmed to the present cast, thank you.

Part of the appeal of CRIMINAL MINDS is that the series involves some of the most bizarre and outrageous crime stories of any TV show. Sometimes the criminals seem as outrageous as any found in twisted horror films such as the SAW series. And the audience seems to enjoy the various niche roles that each character fills. Both A J Cook and Matthew Gray Gubler seem to be popular actors among younger viewers of the show and give the show some measure of youth appeal. Given this fact it seems difficult to understand why the contract of actress A J Cook isn't being renewed.

CRIMINAL MINDS is popular because it really pushes the edge in terms of crime show content. It will no doubt continue the way. But actress A J Cook will be sorely missed. For many TV viewers one of their favorite crime show babes is A J Cook. Her fresh and young look almost seems to appear much younger than her 31 years of age. And she's a decent enough actress that she's made a real impact on many fans of the series.