Friday, July 29, 2011

Danny Glover: Noted actor and activist comes to Texas for appearance at local high school

Glover at Cannes Film Festival

Glover as Deets in Lonesome Dove
Danny Glover is an  actor and outspoken political activist. He has been acting since 1979 in movies, TV and on Broadway. He trained as an actor at the American Conservatory Theatre. He made his big screen debut in Escape From Alcatraz, 1979. He went to act in other roles but The Color Purple (1988),  co-starring Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey, made him a household name.

Of all the movies he’s starred in The Color Purple was the most controversial. African Americans were not happy with “Mr”, the character Glover portrayed. He went on to star with Winfrey in Beloved and later in an HBO movie called Good Fences starring himself and Goldberg.

Sitting down to this interview, I noticed that Glover was somewhat uptight when I  mentioned The Color Purple. He braced himself for a verbal reprimand and scrutiny of his role. Unfortunately, Glover was summarily attacked by female interviewers, critics and moviegoers who hated "Mr." so much they took their anger out on him. He and Whoppi Goldberg were openly snubbed at the NAACP's Image Awards. Of course, there are characters like "Mr", in every nationality all over the world. However, many African Americans are extremely sensitive to these "airing dirty laundry" characters on the big screen.

Upon seeing that I had no intention of going for his throat because of a role he played with so much believability, he relaxed and the interview turned out well. Glover was talkative and opinionated.

Mel Gibson and Glover in Lethal Weapon
In the Lonesome Dove mini series Glover played Joshua Deets, an ex-slave and scout during the civil war era. The mini series hit was on CBS, and started February 5, 1989. Glover struck big-screen gold when he paired up with Mel Gibson in the Lethal Weapon series in 1987, 1989, 1992 and 1998, all of which were box office hits. If you are familiar with Glover's career, then you know that his movie, TV and stage credits are too numerous to list on this blog. 

In this 1989 interview Glover and I talked about a few of his movies, and why he took the roles he did. Glover was in Austin, Texas to give a pep talk to students at Kealing Junior High School, where he got an enthusiastic reception for students and staff.

Dorothy: How did you get the role in the Lonesome Dove series? Who was Joshua Deets?

Glover: Joshua Deets is a very honorable man, and had been a scout for the Texas Rangers throughout the period of the civil war. He was an exslave. There was kind of an integrity about him, a strength about him.

Dorothy: What attracted you to the role?

Glover: First of all it was a good script. The first thing I consider is what the script is like, the character, the theme of the script, the integral  part of the script. The Lonesome Dove script was well written. It’s a vivid fictionalized period in this country’s history. Then the character is a real nice character.

Dorothy: Was the character originally written for an African American?

Glover: Yes. It’s an adaption of a novel.

Dorothy: Does it depict you in a positive image rather than some other image you might see a Black man playing?

Glover: I think so. I think he’s heroic if that’s a positive image. Certainly I would have liked to know more about the road Deets traveled to become who he was. That wasn’t part of the script. I would like to know what was Deets story. Not from a year ago, but from five or ten years ago. He was gentle. He was kind. He was heroic from the stand point that he’s a fighter, and he knew how to defend himself.

Dorothy: What character or event in your life did you draw on to play the role? It’s not everyday that Blacks have a cowboy experience or live the lifestyle.

Glover: It’s so much that comes into your life sometimes that you can draw from. Your imagination is one of the most important ingredients. You put someone on a horse and you can quickly see the erection of the body. You define it differently just by the way you sit in the saddle. You sit with dignity. I’ve seen cowboys that look like they are broken down when they are walking. But when they are on a horse there is a certain majestic majesty about that .  .  . being on a horse. That in itself gives you something to work with. I’ve been around Black cowboys for the last two years. I was the Grand Marshall for the Bill Pickett Rodeo, which is a national rodeo.

Dorothy: Okay, this movie has caused you some headaches. You know I am fixing to talk about The Color Purple . . .

Glover: The Color Purple (we both laugh) I was in Hong Kong during international publicity for Lethal Weapon about a year ago, and some people came to see me who wrote for a newspaper. They said (he imitates a Hing Kong news reporter) ‘You in The Color Purple!”

Dorothy: The character was so controversial and memorable.

Glover: Well, I think there is controversy behind everything you do, like the choices you make. I did it in Places From the Heart, a very beautiful film. I was in Chicago and not one Black publication showed up to interview me. White publications showed up. So either they didn’t think it was worth their time to come and interview me, or the film was controversial.

Dorothy: What do you think “Mr” was saying in The Color Purple?

Actor Danny Glover
Glover: I think "Mr." is a man in transition. In some ways he represents men in their transition in their relationship with women. When you are the dominant person in any societal situation, and are constantly dealing with it . . . you have that dominant supportive or dominant subjective relationship--you have people struggling to change that. Women have been in situations where they tried to change the thinking of men for a long time. A very long time. And certainly that is the transition that we see.

I think that’s what The Color Purple is about. I think its about people who began to learn to love themselves, to appreciate themselves. Because of that they begin to grow. That’s how I saw this character. I saw him, like all human beings, who come into this world are capable of loving and maturing. Somewhere in the back of his psyche, somewhere in the process of his socialization, because of that period of time and his upbringing, he wasn’t able to simplify those particular feelings. I think that’s the character that Alice (Walker) wrote. I think not enough attention was given to that aspect (of Mr.) We are people. We are men in transition.

I was in Chicago at Martin Luther King School, and over 50 percent of the young black girls there had been molested by their mama’s boyfriends, stepfathers, fathers. That’s real. We have to begin to deal with. We can’t sit it in a corner. We can say it belongs there. It’s not supposed to be out there. That’s  bull! We have to address it. We have to look at ourselves. It’s enough to say the white man did this, the system did that, but there is a humanity that we have to call on in ourselves. We have to address that. We h ave to be responsible for that.

Dorothy: Do you think the Black community is denying that we have characters like “Mr.” in our communities?

Glover: I think because of the oppressive conditions that we weathered, because of the stereotypes that we weathered, we find it hard to make that adjustment. We find it hard to deal with the negative, always looking for positive images. All societies, all cultures want to see themselves in a positive, heroic venue. We are not unlike any other people. Because of the battering of racism and oppression in America, we grab onto this and we protect it in a sense. We are sensitive in a sense. I understand that.

The whole history of American film has been one that created derogatory, negative images of Black people. From Birth of A Nation to before Birth of A Nation. These things exist, and we have learn to confront them, live with it and deal with it. When we confront it we have chance to say this is where we are, this is where we have to go.  Whatever the story we are talking about, whether it’s The Color Purple, or some other fictionalized story. “Mr.” is not the archetype of Black men. And Alice didn’t write the story intending for him to be that.

A lot of the discourse and discussion that came out of this movie is necessary. It’s mandatory. I think it’s a vehicle to say in this industry, to say to people in this country that we are not getting the chance to present who we are in this medium. When I say people say to me I saw you in The Color Purple, that’s world-wide. I’m in business of projecting images. I’m in the business of telling history through the projection of those images. It’s important that we become an integral part in deciding what those images are. I want those images to be full. I want the images to  go through conflict. I want them to be men learning to change. I don’t want them to men coming down from Mt. Olympics, coning down to show us the way. I want to see real men exhibiting their own humanity.

Dorothy: If Blacks want to get these positive images in the movies, do you think they’ll  have to do it themselves rather than depend on someone else?

Glover: We’re dealing with this on the wrong terms. I’m talking about positive images, and there are certain definitions about positive images. I’m talking about human beings, not caricatures. Human beings have doubts, faults. Human beings have good things about them. See, that’s the problem I am having. I have trouble with that word ‘positive images’. Life is conflict, and overcoming conflict. We grow in stature. We grow in our sense of self. Our humanity grows, and it grows by the way we deal with conflict.

Dorothy: As a success story do you feel obligated to be a role model for youngsters who are  heading in the wrong direction?

Glover: I have a responsibility to the Black community whether I’m Danny Glover or not. Just because I’m successful it doesn’t heighten or lessen my responsibility. The fact that I am a human being who grew up in the community, who was nurtured by a community of Black people all my life, giving me the substance–it is my responsibility to pass that on to other people.

Dorothy: Do you think communities should go back to the days when neighbors looked out for each, especially children?

Glover: I think the way we can maintain values brings us together. It brings us a sense of  extended families in the sense of community.

Dorothy: What do you think of Jesse Jackson running for president? What has it done for the spirit of Black people?

Glover: It’s incredible to see that happen. Whatever he does, he bring attention to the issues, the problems. Jesse has always done that. The benefits are enormous for us today; they are enormous for our future, and certainly for our kids future.

Dorothy: Where do you think you’ll be about five years? How much longer do you want to act?

Glover: Right now I just don’t see an end to acting, but there are some other things I want to do. I think the attention that I’m getting  now is momentary. That is going to change. People are going to get tired of seeing me. That’s real. I think it’s something I can pretty well adjust to and handle. I don’t know what’s going to happen in five years. Hopefully, if God is willing, I’m still with everyone (alive).

Friday, July 22, 2011

President Barack Obama: A bowl of Jell-O

 Speaker John Boehner
Speaker John Boehner, explains what it's like negotiating with President Obama on the debt ceiling. Hed said dealing with the White House "is like dealing with a bowl of Jell-O." Boehner forgot to mention that he was the one who melted like a bowl of Jell-O when he walked away from the table.

"But according to the New York Times, a White House official confirmed that the president had agreed over the coming decade to cut $250 billion from Medicare spending and $310 billion from other domestic entitlement programs, like farm subsidies and education programs. 

"He was also willing to change the formula for Social Security cost-of-living adjustments, which many economists say would more accurately reflect inflation, for savings of about $125 billion more. These concessions were contingent on Boehner and his colleagues agreeing to higher taxes for wealthy Americans and corporations.

"The breakdown in negotiations between President Obama and Rep. Boehner was the second time this month that Boehner had walked away from the table with the president after word of their private talks was leaked to the news media, provoking protests from Republican lawmakers and antitax conservative groups.

“I’ve been left at the altar now a couple of times,” President Obama said. “And I think that one of the questions that the Republican Party is going to have to ask itself, [is] can they say yes to anything?” (Rolling Out, July 22, 2011)

Definition of Jell-O: Used for a gelatin dessert usually with the flavor and color of fruit.

Gelatin: a gluttonous material obtained from animal tissues by boiling; a colloidal protein used as a food, in photography, and in medicine.

  Jell-O Images of "fruit flavored"Obama

It must have been difficult for Boehner to hold his attention and focus while siting at a table with colorful "bowls" of eye-catching Jell-O. Wonder which flavor he was referring to during his press conference?


A comedian with heart and a good upbringing

Comedian/actress Shirley Hemphill
A taxi driver in One In A Million
What's Happening cast
Shirley Hemphill, actress and comedian appeared at the Comedy Store in Austin, Texas in 1983. This interview with her lasted about an hour and we covered a variety of issues. A woman on the hefty side, Hemphill was born in Ashville, North Carolina July 1, 1947. 

She died at her suburban hone in California in 1999 of kidney failure.
She was found in her home by her gardener. Hemphill, 52 years old when she died, was the younger sister to her only brother, both of whom were raised by their mother.

Hemphill got started in show business in 1975 when her was discovered and invited to guest on the TV sitcoms All’s Fair and then Good Times. Her big break came when she landed a sizable role in What’s Happening. She played a sarcastic, mouthy waitress. The show lasted for three seasons from 1976 to 1979.

In 1988 Hemphill got a chance to star in her own sitcom, One In A Million. She played a taxi driver who inherited a fortune from one of her customers. She was on air on Tuesdays, in a prime time spot. The show had good ratings. But the show was moved to Saturday nights, Hemphill had to compete with the popular show ChiPs, starring the toothy, smiling Erik Estrada. The show was put to bed after 13 episodes despite of it getting moved it back to Tuesdays. Her audience was no longer there.

After the show was cancelled Hemphill took her comedy act on the road, playing clubs and comedy establishments. In between those gigs she made cameo appearances on TV, and was a regular on late night talk shows . In 1996 she co-starred in her second  movie Shoot the Moon. She had a small part in the movie CB4 starring Chris Rock in 1994, her first movie.

Dorothy: What are your hobbies?

Shirley: Tennis. Movies. I like going to the movies. Let m e see what else. It used to be eating but I’m trying to cut down (laughing).

Dorothy: What is your philosophy about life?

Shirley: I don’t know if I have a philosophy. I just try to be decent and not hurt nobody. I try to learn something everyday.  I don’t always succeed.

Dorothy: What about your favorite comedic male and female?

Shirley: has to be Elaine Bossler and Marshall Warfield, a Black comedian from Chicago, whose got a movie coming out this summer with Mr. T. I guess Richard Pryor would be one. He helped me a lot in show business. Friend-wise, Bill Cosby. He has been very, very good to me.

Dorothy: When did you first realize that you were funny? Are you a shy person?

Shirley: I was real quite. As a matter of fact I got left back in the first grade ‘cause I wouldn’t talk out. I never realized I could make money in comedy until I came out to California to visit. I decided maybe, this is what I wanted to do. I was a medical secretary back in my hometown hospital. I’ve always had the support of my mom. She said go try it. ‘You got an education, you can always fall back on that.’ I got lucky two years later.

Dorothy: When and where did you first perform?

Shirley: When I came out to California there was this place called the Comedy Store. I got five minutes. I had been going down there the whole week. I saw David Brenner, the late Freddy Prince, all of those kind of people. And the after a week-- I was on a budget--so the club owner said if you want, you can come on at 12  at night, and you don’t have to pay a cover charge. The first five minutes was the worst. Somebody taped it  It sounded horrible. The owner kept giving me those last five minutes until I worked my way up. Then when the TV show came on I went on at 7 o’clock, which is prime time.

Dorothy: When you first started making big money, what was the most extravagant thing you bought for yourself?

Shirley: I didn’t buy anything for myself. I bought my mom a house, because we had lived in the projects for so long. That was my dream to have a house, running water! Things that were ours. I didn’t have a phone until I got in show business. My analyst said I’m trying to make up. I have a phone in every room, a television in every room, even in my bathroom. I never had that before. I bought my mama out to California. She wouldn’t come until the second year. She said 'I don’t want to come out there with you showing off and I can’t face my neighbors.'

Dorothy: What about the other show you were on after What Happening?

Shirley: One in A Million? I don’t know. At ABC they were nice people to me financially. It was the best thing I had eve done. ABC has a tendency to give you four or five weeks, then if your show don’t work out, they let you go. In my case I started out in the top 20, and I did so well until they moved me to a weekend night, a Saturday, which is the weakest night. I was up against CHiPs. I just couldn’t hang with them. When they moved me back to Tuesday night it was just too late. It was good experience for me. When I did What’s Happening

Dorothy: Has fame gone to your head? If so, how do you handle it?

Shirley: The first year it did. I think it did with every cast member. I came from North Carolina where all I knew was my family, and the only credit card I had was from Sears, and they threatened to take that. So you know. . . I didn’t have that much. And all of a sudden you’ve got limousines that will take you to the bathroom and back. Checks you can’t even spend this week before another check is in. I look at it as a business now.

Dorothy: If a young woman ask you how to get started in show business as a comedian what would you tell her?

Shirley: You can’t have a bruised ego and be in this business.

Dorothy: Are you one of those comedians who is turned on stage, but not offstage. In other words, you’re Shirley Hemphill on stage, you’re getting paid. Are you also a comedian offstage, unable to separate the two personalities?

Shirley: No, I’m not like that. I just want to be regular people.

Dorothy: What is the serious side of you like?

Shirley: I fee comfortable at home. I read a lot. I can go weeks without seeing anything., which some people don’t quite understand. My mom does because she has ,lived with me so long. Not that I’m angry or anything. I just don’t have too much to say. I’m trying to get out of that. I worry a lot about my family. I used to worry about things I couldn’t control. Mama said it’s a sign of maturity when you just let go.

Dorothy: Are you a loner?

Shirley: Basically, yeah. I think most comics are. Most of the ones I see . . . we don’t hang in groups. I’m a family person. My mother instilled that in me. It’s not too much more you need.

Dorothy: When you’re on stage do hecklers throw you off?

Shirley: That’s why I have the house lights up. People will heckle when it’s dark, but if you put the house light up where everybody can see them, that cuts down on it. Sometimes you just have to cut hecklers off, zap’em and go on. But if he is the type that doesn’t hear he’s been zapped, and as long as people are laughing at him, that’s the most dangerous kind. If you zap on him too hard, the audience will take his side, and you lose the audience. You can’t insult an audience. They won’t take it. Don Rickles is the only one that can do that, but he shows a little warmth and love when he does it.

Dorothy: What I’ve noticed in a lot of comedians now is the use profanity. Are they trying to imitate Richard Pryor? He was the only one who could be vulgar and funny at the same time.

Shirley: I don’t use it as the punch line. Some times comics will use profanity just to say it. Some comedians don’t have faith in their routine. I don’t talk that way on stage. I don’t know why they do it.

Dorothy: Who heckles you the most, women or men?

Shirley: I don’t have hecklers. What bother me the most are women that are drunk and get a little loud. My father was an alcoholic, so I don’t like drinking. You’re see it more now. Woman are drinking a lot in the clubs. Maybe I’m being sexist, but a man can drink and it doesn’t bother me that much. To see a woman real drunk really upsets me, because I figure she will never be a lady again. That’s the only thing that bothers me in clubs.

Dorothy: Has anyone ever tried to get violent with you while you’re on stage?

Shirley: If you’re talking to some guy you can sense when it’s time to back off. If you can’t you’re in trouble. So that’s why I don’t drink anything so I can stay sharp.

Dorothy: Do men find your sense of humor intimidating?

Shirley: When you start degrading men that’s when they get really upset. I just want them to look at themselves and laugh. I haven’t had that kind of trouble yet.

Dorothy: You mentioned that you have gone to see an analysis. If it’s not too personal, what was the reason?

Shirley: You remember when Freddy Prince killed himself? Well, we (What’s Happening) had such a young cast, and the network was scared, so they suggested we go. Being in show business and thrown all this stuff, sometimes it’s hard to adjust. There are certain things I don’t like about myself. It takes me a long time to trust. I try to take each person at face value. I am not very forgiving. Once you cross me I’ll never trust you again. I don’t express anger. I let things brew for years before exploding over something stupid.

Dorothy: Are you of the notion that love comes before sex or vise versa?

Shirley: Huh? Anybody want to hear this? I’m Catholic! (laughing). Is this 1883 or 1983? In my heart I wish it was the other way around. But now days I think sex comes before marriage. Now for my niece I want marriage to come before sex. Do as I say, not as I do!

Dorothy: How do you feel about marriage?

Shirley: For me, it’s not. I don’t want to try it. It’s not for me.

Dorothy: Do you feel like it would be too binding for you?

Shirley: I want to get up and go when I want to. I think for it to be a good marriage, you have to be accountable to someone else. And I don’t want that in my life.

Dorothy: How do you feel about women suing their live-in mates after they break up?

Shirley: Entertainers are beginning to talk about it, like Jimmy Walker (Good Times). He told me he had this girl that he lives with to sign an agreement. It kind of takes away from love. I love you but would sign this? I have nice stuff, so when you come into my home you’re coming into my home. While you’re there everything I have is yours, but once you leave that’s it.

Dorothy: What would be your reaction if you lived with a man for 11 years and after breaking up he sues you for financial support?

Shirley: (laughing) I try to have him killed! I think I would be very, very hurt. But I hope that when we broke up we could be friends, where we can sit and talk about it.

Dorothy: If you weren’t a comedian, what do you think you would be doing?

Shirley: I would probably be a medical receptionist in my home town.

Dorothy: What do you want people to remember about you when it’s all over?

Shirley: Public?

Dorothy: Public and private.

Shirley: Publicly, I would like people to remember that I was a good entertainer. To my family I want them to remember that I was a good person and a credit to my mother’s upbringing. 

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A versatile personality: Is TV hosting Rev. Sharpton's next career move?

Rev. Al Sharpton
 “For the past two weeks civil rights activists  Rev. Al Sharpton has been sitting in on MSNBC’s 6 p.m. time slot for the network’s regular host, Cenk Uyger, who has been on an extended vacation.  He is scheduled to come back next Monday. But the Rev has been a natural on the show.

 Cenk Uyger
He’s had years of TV experience, albeit as a  presidential candidate, leading marching, preaching about injustice.  The Rev. is no stranger to TV. Love him or hate him, you have to admit he knows how to play to TV better than anyone else around.”  (indieWIRE  blog network)

I love it!  Sharpton is not letting politicians and TV savvy guests get away with answering questions he did not ask. He always veer back to the question he asked. I think the other MSNBC hosts should observe him, and learn more about the art of the interview, as conducted by the so-called "amateur, the new kid on the block."

According to a couple of articles I’ve read his ratings are already shooting upwards. Sharpton is coming in behind FOX and CNN, and that ain’t bad! It’s better than the host he is substituting for.

It's so funny to watch guests and pundits get exasperated, trying to retain their cool when Sharpton backs them into a  corner. The majority of the regulars on these shows are used to spouting misinformation about the president and politics. One pundits who agrees with whoever the host is on any given show, refuses to agree with Sharpton, no matter what he say. This pundit has been very critical of Sharpton in his editorials.

I love to watch Sharpton pull his critics back into the fold, letting them know he has done his homework. Unlike some  hosts on MSNBC, Sharpton does not go on the attack with those he disagrees with. Many of his guests formed personal opinions about him long ago, and they come on the show ready to confront him.  They do not understand that the civil rights activist has the intelligence to step out of that suit, and into another when the cameras start rolling. They to think he does not deserve to a TV show. I believe they like the "other" Sharpton;  the one they have long since labeled him an angry fraud, race baiter and race hustler. Wait! That's what Daivd Brooks, columnist for the Washington Post--said about President Obama two years ago!

I hope MSNBC will keep Sharpton on to host the show. As  expected the media are not willing to give him credit for doing a good job. I read today that Cenk Uygur said he voluntarily quit the show. He said he was offered an earlier time slot. On Thursday he is supposed to hold a press conference to explain his departure. That should be interesting to watch.

In its July 20 edition New York Times wrote: "Mr. Uygur, who by most accounts was well liked within MSNBC, said in an interview that he turned down the new contract because he felt Mr. Griffin had been the recipient of political pressure. In April he said Mr. Griffin 'called me into his office and said that he’d been talking to people in Washington, and that they did not like my tone.'

"He said he guessed Mr. Griffin was referring to White House officials, though he had no evidence for the assertion. He also said that Mr. Griffin said the channel was part of the establishment, and that you need to act like it.  MSNBC is home to many hosts who criticize President Obama and other Democrats from a progressive point of view, but at times Mr. Uygur could be especially harsh."

Al Sharpton with his mentor, role model and friend the late James Brown, the hardest working man in show business. They had a long friendship until Brown's death. Sharpton, when he first met Brown, admired his hair so much he began wearing his hair in the same style.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

I didn't have a date for my high school prom because nobody asked to take me

I didn't have a date for my high school prom because nobody asked to take me 

              i didn't
     have a date
       for my high school prom
       in fact i didn't have a
          a formal or decent
           evening dress to wear 
                        for that matter

    the fellas said they like me
        but they don't look at me like
             they look at other girls
               that means no dates for me
                         i'm one of the boys
             i'm not gay or anything like that
       i just like telling dirty jokes
        and playing the dozens
                     you know . . . .
 talking about each others mama 
                and other kinfolk
                         the fellas
                    that didn't
             ask me to the prom
             said i have a 
                     good sense of humor
                           and a cute smile

                                 the girls at school talk about
                                 me behind my back
                                 when they hear my name
                                    they say: 
                   "That girl? She'll do and
                             say anything. She's something else!"

                  they were so prissy and phony
                          they really envied me
                       cause i'm not scared
                        to be myself
         i don't have to be prissy and
          cute to be popular
            with the fellas
                         that didn't ask me to the prom

                       sometimes the girls surround
                         me in the bathroom
                                    cause they want me to
                                teach them to play
                                the dozens 
                                  they want to curse
                                      like me and the fellas
                             "It's got to come natural"
                                    i told them

       i could tell they were jealous
       watching me have all the fun
                                 they were such hot tailed, prissy girls
                the fellas that didn't ask me to the prom
                             said these girls will drop
                                     their panties at the flip
                                                     of a cap
                                                 any boy's cap
                                       the easy girls
                                      like the fellas
                                didn't see through my 
                         happy-go-lucky humor
                      they didn't see it was
                      a cover up to hide the hurt
                      underneath my teenage heart 

     there were days i didn't want to
     laugh, tell dirty jokes or play the dozens

                 i wanted to sit and talk about
                          serious things like what boys
                           tell girls when they're on the dance floor
                             dancing closer than
                                   grown folk told them not to

           i wanted the fellas to talk about
               love and sex and what it meant to them
                          on day i asked them: "Y'all really like
                        those silly girls, or y'all just want to
                           get in their panties?"

               they told me: "Yeah. But you a good girl."
                              the fellas that didn't
                          ask me to the prom
                            told me to keep my legs closed
                   cause i'm one of the fellas
                i don't cry or act like
                 a sentimental girl
                  cause then they'll
                       kick me out the circle

       so i'll kept on telling dirty jokes
       playing the dozens
                                            and showing the fellas
                                             i have a cute smile
                                             and a good sense of humor

copyrighted by dorothy charles banks

Helen of Troy

Helen of Troy
Helen of
/that is/

Her face
launched a
/1000/ ships

compared to

/ what
her beauty
was more/


bared his
to stroke her
flowing hair

Weary soldiers
looked on with
/envy and jealous/
thoughts of

Helen of
that is

/tell me
your beauty

(C) 19copyrighted by dorothy charles banks

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

IHOP evangelist declares that Oprah Winfrey is 'the foreunner of the Antichrist'

Oprah Winfrey
The International House of Prayer (IHOP) is a Christian ministry led by a self-ordained evangelist named Mike Bickle. He founded the ministry 12 years ago.

According to an article by Erik Eckholm in New York Times, July 8, Bickle is “a self-trained evangelical pastor, with a group of 20. The International House of Prayer, in a former strip mall, now draws tens of thousands of worshipers to its revival meetings. A wholly devoted cadre of 1,000 staff members, labeled missionaries, have given up careers to move here, living off donations and spending several hours a day in the prayer hall to revel in what they describe as direct communication with God. Another thousand students attend the adjacent Bible college, preparing to spread this fervent brand of Christianity.”

Bickle is scheduled to appear in Houston, Texas in August. He will participate in Gov. Rick Perry’s Day of Prayer.  Only God's true Christians are invited. Slick Rick, the Texas Prophet, has suddenly evolved into a devout Christian. He recently asked Texans to pray for rain due to the long drought. He even had prayer about the economic recession. He is now praying that God will lay hands on him and make him president.

Bickle, in a attention getting video, went on a “The Harlot Babylon” rant in which he called international talk show host and self-made billionaire Oprah Winfrey the forerunner of the Anti-Christ! He is not the first publicity seeker to try and take a bite out of Winfrey. 

"The Harlot Babylon is preparing the nations to receive the Antichrist. The Harlot Babylon will be a religion of affirmation, toleration, no absolutes, a counterfeit justice movement. They will feed the poor, have humanitarian projects, inspire acts of compassion for all the wrong reasons. They won’t know it, beloved, they will be sincere, many of them, but their sincerity will not in any way lessen the impact of their deception.

“The fact that they are sincere does not make their deception less damaging. I believe that one of the main pastors, as a forerunner to the Harlot movement, it’s not the Harlot movement yet, is Oprah. She is winsome, she is kind, she is reasonable, she is utterly deceived, utterly deceived. A classy woman, a cool woman, a charming woman, but has a spirit of deception and she is one of the clear pastors, forerunners to the Harlot movement," writes Eckholm.

 Is Bickle jealous because Oprah Winfrey earned her money the hard way through hard work and talent, and not foolishly making mega-donation to his ministries? Winfrey has a strong belief in God, who she credits for her good fortune. She says it all the time. Bickle, on the other hands, depends on private donations, book sales, videos.

 “Some former students have complained that the sensory overload and isolation had left them unable to think for themselves, and that some leaders had urged them to avoid contact with skeptical parents,” Eckholm wrote.

It sounds like Bickle is the taskmaster of a growing  "Christian" cult that can be a strong attraction for confused young people trying to find their place in the world.

IHOP, the diner, is suing Bickle for using its trademark name. Some people are already associating the restaurant with the likes of Bickle. That association can hurt IHOP's business financially if they start losing customers due to Bickle stealing the copyrighted name for his personal use. Maybe God told him to disregard the "thou shall not steal" commandment. He also lied about Oprah Winfrey, breaking another commandment.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

I am a woman

I am a woman

She was young and troubled within
wanting to escape
but no place to go
Watching others faithfully
she was learning as she went
trying hard not to commit an error
She reminisced about her sufferings
trapped because she did not
know that she had all the answers
She was still a child
a woman
knowing \what
in front
of her
she will try the best she can
even though she cannot change what is to be
A voice came to her:
Remember there is a joy.
There is a peace.
A quietness within you.
She was young
and troubled within
but now she realizes that
to escape
she must
on herself
Now she has
a true 
her troubles are over
Her time's
not up
only beginning
Is she free?
I will my blessings.
To escape I
have to remove the bars.
I am no longer a child.
I am a woman.

copyrighted by Cynthia Taylor-Edwards