Friday, January 30, 2009

Happy birthday, Payton!

It's hard to believe my precious little grandson, Payton, will be two years old tomorrow (January 31st). Although I don't get to see him nearly as often as I would like, he has brought so much joy and laughter already in his little life so far. I won't get to be with him on his birthday this year...hopefully I'll see him in a couple of months.

Payton, Grandma LOVES you so much! Happy birthday!

Here are a few pictures of Payton's 2nd year.

At his 1st birthday party

At the strawberry patch

Among the Texas bluebonnets

In May, when we went down for his daddy's MBA graduation

Really enjoying that TexMex food!

Fun times in the pool

With Grandpa, Labor Day Weekend

On the farm of his other grandparents, in Idaho

A funny little lion on Halloween

Getting ready to turn a flip. It is SOOO cute when he does this!!!

Enjoying Christmas 2008

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A few observations about last night's "Biggest Loser"

1. I'm very sad to see Dan go, but if we can judge by the follow-up at the end, he has what it takes to continue his weight loss journey. I truly hope so. I don't have high hopes for Dave, though, and I'm almost as annoyed with him as Tara was!

2. I agree with Sam Barrington that Tara would make a great employee. She's the kind of competitor that my husband, a basketball coach, dreams about...and she also seems to have a great heart. I love how she encourages her fellow team-mates.

3. Kudos to Joelle for the radical change in attitude that I honestly didn't think she was capable of! I hope it continues.

4. The musical soundtrack to the show is getting way out of hand. When Jillian was encouraging Dan on the treadmill, the music reached raucous proportions! I expected a choir to start screeching "O Fortuna" at the top of their lungs any minute. We don't need extremely loud, overly dramatic music for every dramatic moment!

5. The show made me cry again last night. When Blaine went home for the birth of his baby, I teared up bigtime.

6. Why does Dane never talk to the camera? We know he can talk...he talks to other people on the show. So why is he never interviewed? It's a mystery.

7. Kurt Warner is handsome.

All in all, a pretty good episode! If you're BL fan, tell me what you thought.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Must-see video for "Lost" fans!

(Yes, the jar in the freeze-frame is off-putting and unfortunate, but this is very funny bit about trying to help a friend catch up with "Lost." :))

Friday, January 23, 2009

Cindy Swanson, CyberSnoop: The Case of the Stolen GPS's

The Case of the Stolen GPS Devices

Are thieves stealing GPS devices to find out where the owner lives, so they can burglarize their home?

That’s the message of an e-mail that’s currently making the rounds. It tells of a family who were at a football game when their GPS device was stolen from their car, along with a remote control garage door opener. When the victims arrived home, they found their home thoroughly ransacked. According to the e-mail, the thieves had used the GPS to guide them to the owner’s home, then used the garage door opener to get inside the house.

In the e-mail, this happened to the "friend of a friend," so there’s no way of verifying the story. However, tells us there have been at least a couple of confirmed instances in which stolen GPS devices were used to guide the thief to the owner’s home. In both cases, the houses weren’t burglarized, but cars were stolen from the homes.

And even if this e-mail can’t be proven, it does raise a good point: although not necessarily being used to find the owner’s home, there IS a very real problem with GPS devices being stolen.

In an April 2008 story, CBS news reported that the number of GPS’s reported stolen has quadrupled in the past couple of years. Police say the bad guys are breaking into cars just because they can see the GPS in full view. Their advice: don’t leave it exposed…not just the unit itself, but the cradle unit as well.

In fact, police say to take the whole unit out of your car…don’t just shove it under a seat. It’s just too tempting for thieves. Police say when you remove the unit, you should even wipe off the marks that the suction cups leave behind! Don’t give thieves any clue that you even have one.

By the way, you don’t have a prayer of recovering your stolen GPS if you don’t have a serial number for it. There’s a website you can go to that was specifically created to help you register your lost device and find it if it’s stolen: it’s A similar site is

According to the CBS story, some GPS manufacturers are now making the devices so that you have to have a 4-digit pin number to make them work. The hope is that if no one else can use it, it won’t get stolen.

Clearing up another internet rumor, this is Cindy Swanson, CyberSnoop…reminding you to check it out BEFORE you hit that “send” button!

NOTE: This feature is now airing as "Cindy Swanson, CyberSleuth" on the radio in Canada! I share my internet sleuthing to de-bunk or confirm e-mail rumors with Beth Warden on

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Kudos to some terrific blogs...marking January 22nd....and welcome back, "Lost"!

Some of the blogs I highly regard and recommend have turned up on a list of the most-read church blogs.

Kudos to Tim Challies, who was number one!, Justin Taylor's Between Two Worlds (#2), PyroManiacs (#8), Evangelical Underground (#10), Adrian Warnock (#23), and Jollyblogger (#41.)

I've had the pleasure of interviewing Tim Challies, Justin Taylor and Phil Johnson of PyroManiacs.

A Day to Mourn

Today marks the 36th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion.

One of the tenets I've come to feel ever more strongly about is the sanctity of human life. If we don't value the gift of life--whether that of the unborn (or preborn if you prefer that term), the handicapped, the ill or the aged--then our society is truly doomed.

Of course, to believe life is sacred, you have to believe there's a higher power who created it. And if you believe in God, it follows that there is such a thing as right and wrong. Good and evil. Absolute truth. All of those things fly in the face of secular humanism. I'm sorry, but I abhor a philosophy that devalues life.

For the past several years, I've posted on January 22nd something I wrote a few years ago. It's titled "January 22nd--A Day to Mourn."

I won't re-post all of it here, but here's a bit of it, and the link to the entire post if you'd like to read it:

When I was a junior in high school, I was delighted to hear that my older sister was pregnant with her third child. I adored my nieces, Shelly and Stephanie, and was looking forward to another little niece or nephew.

My sister gave birth that January to a beautiful little baby girl, and named her Deborah Leigh. But as perfect as Deborah looked, it quickly became obvious that something was wrong. Deborah's little heart was incomplete, and she died within a week of her birth.
--read more here

"Lost" is back!

Watching "Lost" again was like seeing old friends that have been away for a while. The time travel element is confusing, but fascinating...and I can't wait to see what's in store for our Losties.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A tale of three pastors

Would you pray at the inauguration?... a Mississippi pastor faces a deadline...and Tchividjian to take the helm of Coral Gables?

Pastor Rick Warren

Would you accept if you were asked to pray at the inauguration...and what would you say? That was the question Christian blogger Dan Phillips asked several pastors whose opinion he respects. One of those was local pastor Chris Brauns, of the Red Brick Church in Stillman Valley, IL.

Rick Warren of Saddleback Church gave the invocation prayer at today's inauguration. Many have said he did a fine job, despite the controversy over his selection. You can read the entire prayer here. (By the way, Dan Phillips wasn't impressed.)

Pastor Chris Brauns

Chris Brauns admits he wouldn't have been on the short list of those asked to pray at the inauguration, but he says, "I am inclined to say that I would accept, provided that there not be any conditions that would insist that I downplay my allegiance to the Lord Jesus Christ as the only true King."

Here's part of Chris's prayer:

Our Father in Heaven, hallowed be your Name.

We stand today to ask you to bless our country and this president. Father, would you guide President Obama and the United States of America through the night with a light from above?

Lord, we pray that you would protect President Obama from temptation, that you would keep him from situations where he might make mistakes and do that which is displeasing to you. We ask rather that you would give him wisdom with each choice he makes. Lead him to make the right appointment. Give him eyes to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly.

The prayer ends with this:

God, on our knees, we ask again, that you would bless our president. Guide Him through the night, with your light from above.

In the name of the only King, your only begotten Son, the Risen Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,


You can read the entire prayer at Pastor Chris Brauns' blog,

A crisis for a Mississippi church

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you'll remember me interviewing Lakeshore, Mississippi pastor Don Elbourne a year after Hurricane Katrina. (Note: I'm sorry that the soundbites in the story can no longer be heard.)

The facilities of Elbourne's church, Lakeshore Baptist, were destroyed by the Hurricane. Since then, using temporary buildings, the church has been the hub for an amazing amount of volunteerism aimed at rebuilding the entire community.

But a county decision could force the church to close its doors.

Here's a link to a video about the church's plight.

Keep Lakeshore Baptist and its rebuilding efforts in your prayers.

A new pastor for Coral Gables?

Tullian Tchividjian and family

The Associated Press reported today that Tullian Tchividjian, a pastor and author who happens to be a grandson of evangelist Billy Graham, was set to become the new pastor of the Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church formerly pastored by the late D. James Kennedy.

However, according to the blog of Tchividjian's current church, that's not a done deal yet.

I've had the privilege of interviewing Tullian about his book, "Do I Know God?"

Monday, January 19, 2009

Monday Melange

Storyside B member dies..."Lost" producers interviewed...a comic book of Genesis?

Ron McClelland of Storyside B

--Sad news in the Christian music world: Storyside B band member Ron McClelland passed away suddenly over the weekend. Radio Promoter Chris Hauser posted this on a radio forum last night:

Ron McClelland of Gotee act Storyside:B collapsed today during a basketball game on a Christian cruise, and could not be revived. Since December Ron had been co-hosting WCRJ/Jacksonville's morning show with Theresa Ross as well. Please keep Ron's wife Rebekah (also on the cruise), the band, and WCRJ's staff in your prayers in the difficult days ahead"

Christian singer Aaron Shust posted this comment on his blog:

"I cannot fathom the sadness that must be in the hearts of those who lived close to Ron day in and day out. Ron always had a big smile and a big heart. His words were never anything but kind and complimentary. I believe that we will see him again. In the meanwhile, he will be missed. Let's lift up his family in prayer as we think of them. "

A note on the band's MySpace says that they are "shocked and deeply saddened" at the news of McClelland's death, and will be setting up a fund to help the family pay for funeral expenses.

In other news...

President-elect Barack Obama's inauguration is being sufficiently covered by the rest of the media, so forgive me for straying from that theme, but...

I'm jazzed about "Lost" coming back!!!

--You can watch a video interview with the "Lost" producers Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof here. It's about a Paley Center tribute to the show.

That January 17th event included a screening of the top two episodes of Lost as voted by fans. The winners were Through the Looking Glass, the season 3 finale of Lost, and Walkabout--(SPOILER IF YOU'RE WATCHING SEASON ONE ON DVD!!!)the season one episode that revealed that Locke had been in a wheelchair. (I can still recall my open-mouth astonishment when I saw that!)

Jennifer at
Connect With Your Teens
attended the event and blogs about it quite interestingly. Here's an excerpt:

Jeff's final question was how they think Lost will be viewed down the road. One response that Damon gave really stood out in my mind. He said that he hopes that people have great memories of it and will say "when I grew up I watched Lost with my family". All I could think of was the first post I ever wrote on this blog "Why Lost is the best TV show to watch with your teens" and the great times I've had watching and discussing Lost with my family.

--The biggest story in comic books in 2009 is said to be Robert Crumb's comic book adaptation of the biblical book of Genesis. I'm not a comic book devotee, nor am I familiar with Robert Crumb, so I'm wondering if the scripture will be treated with respect.

There's no doubt that Genesis contains some of the most amazing and enthralling stories ever written.

Friday, January 16, 2009

I can't resist a weight loss competition!

Mark Hall of Casting Crowns and Bart Millard of MercyMe are trying to see which one can lose more weight before the Dove Awards. Note: "Biggest Loser" it's not. Maybe Mark and Bart could use some help from Trainer Bob or Jillian? :)

Cindy Swanson, CyberSnoop: The Case of the Jury Duty Scam

Are identity thieves trying to trick people into revealing their personal information by telling them they’ve failed to report for jury duty?

The answer, according to several sources, is YES.

This is the subject of an e-mail that has been circulating since around 2005…the latest version, which I actually just received the other day, even provides a link to confirming that it’s true.

Here’s how it works: The scammer calls claiming to work for the local court, tells you you’ve failed to report for jury duty, and claims that a warrant has been issued for your arrest. When you say you never received jury duty notification, the scammer then asks you for confidential information for "verification" purposes.

The scammer will ask you for your Social Security number, birth date, sometimes even credit card numbers and other private information. The jury duty scam has popped up in several states.

Here’s what you need to know: court workers will NOT call you to ask for personal information because you’ve supposedly missed jury duty or even for screening purposes. ( In most cases, court workers won’t call you at all…most of the info you receive from them will be through the mail.)

Again…and we can’t say this enough…unless YOU initiated a call, do NOT give out those personal details to someone who claims to be from a government office, the bank, or even just someone who’s trying to sell you something. They’re probably just trying to get the information they need to commit identity theft.

Confirming another internet rumor, this is Cindy Swanson, CyberSnoop…reminding you to check it out BEFORE you hit that “send” button!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

American Idol singers have a local tie

Shortly after Darren Marlar and I mentioned American Idol contestant Danny Gokey on 101QFL this morning, I got a call from an elder at Faithbuilders International in Beloit, WI.

It seems Gokey--who touched hearts as a recent widower and wowed the judges with his soulful singing--was a worship leader at Faithbuilders. Also involved with Faithbuilders was Jamar Rogers, who also made it through to Hollywood from the Kansas City auditions.

I didn't get to see AI last night, but I checked out Gokey's audition at

Danny Gokey audition

Apparently both Gokey and Rogers have ministered in the Faithbuilders locations in both Milwaukee and Beloit, which is right up the road from me. I will definitely be watching to see how they fare in their AI journey!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Biggest Loser tugged at the heartstrings last night

As annoyed as I with with Biggest Loser last week for sending nine players home to lose weight on their own--with the promise of maybe getting to come back to the ranch in 30 days--I saw strong glimpses last night of what makes the show worth watching.

First, the negative...

I can't say I blame normally sweet trainer Bob for losing a grip over the very annoying Joelle and her non-participation. However, I wish both Bob and Jillian would clean up the potty-mouths. Even with bleeps a-plenty, it got offensive. That said, Joelle was incredibly annoying.

Still, she doesn't even begin to approach the unlikability factor of which last season's Vicky was the undisputed champion.

That said...

Yep, the show tugged at the heartstings last night. I saw contestants put thoughts of "game play" aside to give a hand to other contestants. Like when the team-mates of the over 400-pound teenager, Dan, helped him make it up a steep hill. Their very real kindness was heartening.

When the 63-year-old Jerry realized, at weigh-in time, that he was in danger of being eliminated, I'm pretty sure there were sniffles all across America. He just broke my he did Jillian's and even Alison Sweeney's, who was dabbing away tears.

Still, the players showed heart when they sent Jerry home instead of the teen-aged Dan. They reasoned--rightly--that Jerry would be able to continue losing weight at home, whereas Dan might not.

The follow-up video did indeed show that Jerry has gone on to lose a total of 84 pounds. It looks like he and his wife, Estella, have a new lease on life.

It's pretty obvious that Dan simply HAS to stay on the show, as long as possible. I am so rooting for him to lose weight and turn his life around. He has really captured my heart.

As for Joelle. Yes, she's annoying and seems to be a slacker. Did she really think she could come on Biggest Loser and fake exercising? Also, she'll be responsible if her team-mate, Carla, doesn't make it back on the show--and frankly, Carla seems like a much more fun and entertaining person than Joelle.

I'm hoping the fact that she nearly got sent home will cause Joelle to change her attitude and rededicate herself to the task at hand--but judging from the previews, it doesn't look like that happened.

All in all, Biggest Loser seems to be returning to what made me like it in the first place. It's an inspiring story about changing yourself for the better.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

It's baaack.....American Idol returns to TV tonight

You've got to understand, I watch so little television that I really get excited about the few shows that I really do like...and two of them are returning this month.

"American Idol" returns tonight, with the obligatory audition episodes. To be honest, I'm not sure how much I'm really looking forward to these episodes. They can be painful, even somewhat cruel at times. Still, it's best to watch them if you're going to start rooting for someone early on. At best, they can be truly funny and entertaining.

The dilemma tonight? Both "American Idol" and "The Biggest Loser" are on. I'm thinking I'll probably DVR "American Idol," and watch "The Biggest Loser."

I was really ticked off at TBL last week for pulling a stunt that I thought was just tacky. (I won't go into it now, but Sam Barrington perfectly expressed my own feelings on the subject here, if you're interested.)

But TBL has me where they want me. I care enough about the contestants that I'll keep watching.

The other show returning this month is, of course, "Lost." I'm hoping the show lives up to my expectations and doesn't disappoint me the way "Heroes" did. "Heroes" has completely lost me. I never watch it anymore.

Why am I so fixated on/passionate about these few television shows? Well, to me, these shows represent a few of those small pleasures that make life enjoyable. I am well aware of the overall sad--actually appalling-- state of network television these days, generally it's nice to have those shows that offer some quality entertainment.

Do you enjoy "American Idol," "The Biggest Loser," and/or "Lost"? Why or why not? Let me know in my comment section!

Monday, January 12, 2009

What are you blogging about today?

Image from Jollyblogger, where you can order T-shirts touting it

Since I'm drawing a blank on blogging ideas today, I decided to report on what OTHER people are blogging! If you read this and you're not mentioned here, tell me what YOU'RE blogging about in my comments section...and of course, provide a link to it!

--Randy at Reflections in Life reviews Don Piper's 90 Minutes in Heaven.

--Smiling Sally is taking part in the Blue Monday meme.

--Chris Brauns at A Brick in the Valley has some good thoughts on the importance of waiting.

--Ann-Marie at The Left-handed Rabbit blogs about getting to know her dad's side of the family.

--Robin Lee Hatcher at Write Thinking shares a beautiful view from her patio.

--Big Doofus might've over-exerted himself a bit.

--Angela Hunt at A Life in Pages is sharing a video.

--Dan Burrell has a house you might want to rent if you're visiting western North Carolina.

--"We're Living Proof that Depravity is Total."--Phil Johnson at PyroManiacs.

--Dave Kendall at The Silent Fool says it's never too late to become the person you want to be.

--Barbara at Tidbits and Treasures was impressed with a presentation at her church by Teen Challenge.

--La Shawn Barber blogs about Christians in Hollywood.

--David at Jollyblogger writes about his cancer experience.

--Janet at Quoth the Maven isn't sorry she fell asleep during the Golden Globes.

--Reformed Grits is sad that her son won't be playing soccer anymore.

So what are YOU blogging about? Give me a link!

Friday, January 09, 2009

Cindy Swanson, CyberSnoop: The Case of the Cell Phone Con

As part of my job on 101QFL, I check out internet rumors as "Cindy Swanson, CyberSnoop." Here's the latest:

The Case of the Cell Phone Con

Are instances being reported, here in the stateline area and across the nation, of cell phone users getting text messages asking them to contact a number with their banking and other personal information?

Yes. CyberSnoop didn’t even really need to check this out on Snopes or TruthOrFiction. It happened to quite a few of our listeners and to me personally!

In my case, both my husband and I received text messages on our cell phones, claming that our bank account was being terminated due to “unusual activity.” In both cases, we were urged to call a provided number…one of the messages came right out and said “to verify bank information.”

The bottom line? Unless YOU initiated a phone call with a trusted institution, do NOT give out those numbers. You could end up with a drained bank account.

I talked with Winnebago County Sheriff's Deputy Chief Dominic Iasparro about giving out personal numbers. Listen to his comment here.

If you’ve already given out such information to strangers who contacted you, you should call your local police department and your bank—-and make sure it’s your bank’s legitimate number, by the way.

And if you get a message like that again…whether it claims to be from your bank or any other institution…and whether it arrives via e-mail, phone call, Facebook or MySpace or text message, DO NOT give out those numbers. Be on the safe side and delete.

Confirming another internet rumor, this is Cindy Swanson, CyberSnoop…reminding you to check it out BEFORE you hit that “send” button!

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Promoting and encouraging Christian filmmaking...

The San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival

The humanistic religious worldview of Hollywood elites and their intense hatred for Christianity and the value system which it embodies has created a rift in American culture and profoundly damaged the American family. We intend to respond, not by cursing the darkness, but by lighting candles. Building a community of independent Christian filmmakers is one such candle.--Doug Phillips, President, Vision Forum Ministries

More than 2000 Christian filmmakers were expected to attend this week's San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival, going on now in San Antonio. Dean Jones and Kirk Cameron are on hand at the festival.

(which earned more than 33 million dollars at the box office) and Ben Stein's Expelled are among the films for the 101-thousand dollar grand prize awarded to the best feature film.

Have you seen "Fireproof"? I haven't yet, and would love to know what you thought. Give me your mini-review in my comments section, please!

Movieguide Awards

Meantime, the 17th Annual Movieguide® Faith & Values Awards Gala is set for February 11, 2009 in Beverly Hills, CA. The two winners of the Most Inspiring Movie of 2008 and the Most Inspiring Television Program of 2008 will each be awarded a total of $100,000 in prize money at the event.

Last year's winners were “Amazing Grace” and Hallmark Hall of Fame’s “The Valley of Light” on CBS.

Top Cultural Events of 2008?

Movieguide founder and spokesman Dr. Ted Baehr has come out with a list of the Top 5 Cultural Events of 2008. According to him, they include:

1. Media bias.

2. The decline in attendance at the movie box office in 2008, where admissions dropped 5%.

3. The success of clean movies, especially animated movies, at the box office, including such hits as “Wall-E,” “Kung Fu Panda,” Madagascar: Escape to Africa,” “Horton Hears a Who,” “Journey to the Center of the Earth,” “Bolt,” “Beverly Hills Chihuahua,” and “High School Musical 3.”

4. Movieguide® and the Concerned Women for America’s successful campaign to get the controversial child rape movie, “Hounddog,” pulled from theaters.

5. The cultural move toward the Internet, including teenagers and young adults downloading movies from the Internet to watch on their laptops instead of in theaters or on television.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

A cup of hot tea: one of life's "creature comforts"

Discovering the pleasures of loose tea

creature comforts - things that make you comfortable and at ease;
"all the comforts of home"

One of my favorite gifts this Christmas was from my son and daughter-in-law, but I suspect my daughter-in-law picked it out! She knows me well enough to know that I enjoy what I call "creature comforts"...those little things in life that make things more comfortable, cozy and pleasant.

I'm holding the little purple teapot in this picture. (The color was even chosen for a reason: to match my eggplant-colored Longaberger mugs--and it does match them, perfectly.)

The pot is for the purpose of brewing loose tea. Although I love tea, I've never really had access to loose tea before. My gift was the little teapot, which comes with a snap-on metal lid and an "infuser"--a little strainer basket that fits in the top of the pot, in which you spoon a small amount of loose tea.

Along with the teapot, I was given a bag of loose tea. It's from Keria Teas in Round Rock, Texas, and it's called "Texas Summer"--according to the website: "This refreshing blend of peaches and apricots with gunpowder green tea has been our #1 seller for many years."

I can see why. This tea is absolutely delicious. I admit I had to learn by trial and error--there were no instructions as to how much tea to put in the strainer, and I put way too much the first the point where it was completely undrinkable.

I learned that a scant teaspoon works best for my taste. The result is one of the smoothest, most delicious teas I've ever had the pleasure of enjoying.

I can see why tea is a so essential and even almost a ritual in some cultures. Few things are more enjoyable, more soothing and delightful than a cup of really delicious hot tea...and you can really taste the difference between the loose tea and tea-bags.

I'll be enjoying this gift for a long time to come!

So, how about you...any especially delicious teas you can recommend? Let me know in my comments section!

Monday, January 05, 2009

These former teen idols seem like some pretty nice guys

OK, I'm not saying I'm going to watch this show regularly. But while nursing a bad cold over the weekend, I lighted on VH-1's Confessions of a Teen Idol...and I actually didn't hate it.

Granted, I only watched it because there was nothing else on...and if it had even begun to exhibit the disgustingness (is that a word?) of most VH-1 reality shows, I would've zapped it immediately. But this gathering of formerly famous entertainers (other columnists and writers are labeling them "has-beens," "washed-up," etc), did catch my attention.

It's unclear what the aim of the show really is. Apparently it's to give the seven former "heart-throbs" another shot at fame, although the first episode didn't go into how that would be accomplished. I guess just being on the show will restore a measure of fame in itself.

To be honest, they kinda touched my heart in a weird way. Here were seven guys who had experienced pretty much the pinnacle of fame and adoration, and now they're back to being just normal guys.

All seven of them seem--at least from the initial episode--like nice guys. Most of them still retain the good looks that helped catapult them to fame--although Christopher Atkins of The Blue Lagoon (I'm sorry, but I always thought that was the lamest movie) and Adrain Zmed are looking pretty craggy, and Billy Hufsey (of, ironically, the show called Fame) is looking a little beefy.

A mean-spirited prank?

The show is produced by former kid stars themselves, Scott Baio and Jason Hervey. I'm sure a stunt played on the seven former idols was aimed at stirring up controversy and therefore drama for the show, but it did seem a bit mean-spirited.

Spoiler if you haven't watched it yet and intend to: the guys are told they're going to be the focus of a red-carpet event in which they'll be appearing for their "fans." They dress excitedly and are whisked away by limo, where, sure enough, a red carpet lined by (admittedly a rather small number of) fans and photographers awaits them.

Their eagerness as they wait backstage, hearing their names announced and cheering fans, is kind of sad...because you have a slight premonition that they're being set up.

The curtain rises, and Jason Hervey and Scott Baio are standing in an empty room. The cheering fans were nothing but sound effects.

Apparently it was supposed to be some sort of object lesson about the fleetingness of fame and how these guys need to have a tough skin if they want to make comebacks, but I thought it was lame.

So did the guys. In fact, a couple of them were positively irate at being punked and made to look like fools.

I've gotta say, I liked Adrian Zmed's attitude throughout the entire episode. Apparently he has a nice career as a cruise ship entertainer, so he lacks the desperation evinced by some of the other guys. He also actually seems to have some wisdom and maturity that comes across as very appealing.

Maybe it's just my thing to cheer for the underdog, but I found myself rooting for the guys. I'm not sure if I'll ever watch the show again, and maybe future episodes will reveal that some of them really are jerks, but I honestly wouldn't mind if they did succeed.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Beginning a brand new year....

My family! (Standing) My son Justin and daughter Elizabeth
(seated)My daughter-in-law Daylyn, grandson Payton, son Jonathan, me and my husband Doug

Wishing a blessed and prosperous New Year to all who read this blog!
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