The Spectacle Blog

Jane Fonda Still Can’t Figure Out Why Vietnam Vets Don’t Like Her

By on 1.19.15 | 1:08PM

I'm choosing to ignore the shapeless bag of doughnut grease who surfaced out of 2003 to troll Twitter over the weekend, but there's at least one has-been celebrity who washed up on shore over the weekend whose existence I'll acknowledge: Jane Fonda, who despite having done next to nothing since starring in a romantic comedy with Jennifer Lopez almost a decade ago, still gives speeches on the regular to crowds of people looking to relive the 1960s. 

This weekend, her speech in Maryland drew ire from Vietnam veterans who haven't forgotten (rightly) that "Hanoi" Jane Fonda handed a propaganda masterpiece to the North Vietnamese when she decided it was appropriate to visit a Communist military base and dry-hump a cannon. Clearly confused as to why, nearly fifty years later, people who actually fought in that conflict still take it personally, Jane Fonda tried to alleviate the hurt feelings by acknowedging that she, too, is sad. 

About 50 military veterans and their supporters protested an appearance by Jane Fonda in western Maryland.

The 77-year-old was at the Weinberg Center for the Arts in Frederick for a speaking engagement Friday.

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Patriots & Seahawks to Meet in Super Bowl XLIX

By on 1.19.15 | 12:09AM

The New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks will face each other in a fortnight at Super Bowl XLIX in Arizona.

The Patriots decisively beat the Indianapolis Colts 45-7 while the Seahawks came back from behind to defeat the Green Bay Packers 28-22 in OT despite four interceptions thrown by Seahawks QB Russell Wilson.

The Packers had a 16-0 lead at the half, but I didn't think all those Mason Crosby field goals were enough. It should have been 28-0.

The Packers lead 19-7 late in the fourth quarter when both Wilson and Marshawn Lynch rushed for TD's. Throw in a two-point conversion and the Seahawks led 22-19. But Crosby tied the game with his fourth field goal to send it to OT.

But Wilson's TD pass to Jerome Kearse put curses on the Packers' season. The Packers should have won the game. But instead the Seahawks have a chance to win back to back Super Bowls.

However, unless Russell Wilson changes his name to Eli Manning, I have to favor Tom Brady and the Pats.

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Miss Lebanon May Lose Title Over Selfie Taken with Miss Israel

By on 1.18.15 | 6:18PM

Saly Geige, Miss Lebanon, may lose her crown because she had a selfie taken with Doron Matalon, Miss Israel

The two are competing for the 2015 Miss Universe pageant which takes place in Miami and airs on NBC on January 25th. 

Geige insists that she has been avoiding Matalon all week, but the picture of Geige, Matalon along with Miss Slovenia and Miss Japan shows everybody is all smiles.

Lebanon forbids fraternization with Israelis and previously stripped Miss Lebanon for having a picture taken with Miss Israel back in 1993. 

During the 2012 London Olympics, Lebanon's judo team refused to practice alongside Israel's

How can Israel be expected to make peace with its neighbors when its neighbors stand cannot side by side with Jews for a simple selfie?

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U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem Arms Palestinian Guards

By on 1.18.15 | 5:46PM

The Obama Administration is sticking it to Israel yet again. A friend of mine alerted me to this report from The Times of Israel which states the U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem is presently training 35 Palestinians from East Jerusalem as armed guards despite the fact it violates an agreement between Israel and the U.S. Consulate which only allows IDF combat veterans to serve as armed guards.

However, personnel from the U.S. Consulate and the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank prohibits Israelis from entering portions of that territory. Interesting how Palestinians are trying to the West Bank Judenrein and yet Palestinians from the West Bank travel to Israel for work each and every day. 

Let us remember that Palestinians publicly cheered the deaths of Americans following the attacks of September 11, 2001. Speaking of September 11th, hiring Palestinians to guard American diplomatic personnel is inviting another Benghazi. 

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For Obama Donors=Jews on Sanctions Against Iran

By on 1.17.15 | 6:18PM

During a Democratic Senate retreat in Baltimore on Thursday, President Obama spoke out against further sanctions against Iran

When Obama reportedly told his fellow Democrats that he "understood the pressures that senators face from donors and others", it provoked a furious reaction from New Jersey Democratic Senator Robert Menendez who said he took "personal offense" to Obama's remarks. 

Matt Brooks of the Republican Jewish Coalition put out the following statement:

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One More Evening with Ramsey Lewis

By on 1.17.15 | 2:12PM

Last May, I had the opportunity to see Ramsey Lewis perform at Scullers' Jazz Club in Boston and reviewed the performance.

Last night, I saw Ramsey Lewis perform again. This time at New York's legendary Blue Note Jazz Club in Greenwich Village. My Dad also accompanied me to the performance and enjoyed it immensely.

Unlike the Boston show, Lewis was leading a quartet instead of a quintet. They performed selections from Duke Ellington and The Beatles as well as an extended medley from the classic Brazilian film Black Orpheus. Lewis also performed his classic hits "Sun Goddess" and "The In Crowd".

2015 marks the 50th anniversary of Lewis' version of "The In Crowd" hitting the charts. Although he is nearing 80, Lewis remains a sharp performer and is actively touring.

If you've never attended a jazz concert before, the music of Ramsey Lewis is a great place to start.

 

 

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I Feel Sorry for James Taylor

By on 1.17.15 | 1:45PM

Secretary of State John Kerry's decision to bring out James Taylor to sing "You've Got a Friend" in Paris yesterday has been met with near universal derision including by our own Emily Zanotti.

I finally had a chance to watch the video. It was far from Taylor's best rendition of the song and he knew it. By the end of it, he couldn't wait to get the hell out of there. But Kerry pulled him back to acknowledge the applause/humiliation.

I feel sorry for James Taylor. I like his music and once saw him in concert. But neither he nor this song was right for this occasion. 

If Kerry wanted music for the occasion then bring along someone to sing "La Marseillaise" or an Edith Piaf song. 

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John Kerry Brought James Taylor to Apologize to France

By on 1.16.15 | 10:52AM

Apparently, in an act of apology for missing the anti-terrorism protests in France last Sunday, which featured over a million people including, but not limited to, leaders from most of the world's major countries, we hauled 70s folk singer James Taylor all the way over to Paris to sing "You've Got a Friend' at a press conferene. I don't even know why we have a State Department anymore.

Just...Just watch the video. And maybe weep for the future of humanity. I don't know. 

I think John Kerry was then expecting everyone to cuddle. 

America, I want you to understand that this is a real thing that happened. This is a thing and it happened and it was real and we did it. In response to terrorism. This might be the most embarrassing moment of my life and I once missed the announcement that a middle school spirit day was cancelled and showed up to 7th grade in a poodle skirt. 

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Delay of Game?

By on 1.15.15 | 4:41PM

Baseball games get longer and longer, but this is not entirely, or even chiefly because batters spend so much time adjusting their batting gloves between pitches, or that some pitchers seem to go into extended meditative trances before delivering the ball.

A big game-extender is the new philosophy, popular in some dugouts, of going deep into the count in order to see more pitches and to run the opposing pitcher’s pitch count up. But probably the biggest time waster is the fact that so many major league hitters now have so much trouble making contact with the ball. So many strikeouts.

It’s not the length of the game but the pace of the game that matters. For fans it’s not nearly as entertaining to see batters waving at the ball and missing as it is to see the ball put in play. For this reason I’m only lukewarm on the idea of the pitch clock, which will be tried in AA and AAA ball during the 2015 season in hopes of juicing the game up a bit, and perhaps even getting fans home before the late-late show begins.

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Can Joni Ernst Make Obama Squeal in Her SOTU Response?

By on 1.15.15 | 4:41PM

Joni Ernst, the newly elected Senator from Iowa who gave the GOP the majority in last November's election, has been chosen to give the Republican response to the SOTU address on Tuesday.

I don't know if Ernst is planning to talk about hog castration in her response, but if her speech resonates it could make President Obama squeal.

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