Tag Archives: gay rights

Ellen DeGeneres: Funny But So Much More

Comedian and talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres is this year’s recipient of the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. To which I do my own version of Ellen’s signature happy dance.

DeGeneres is not the first female to win the prestigious award, which has been bestowed by the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts annually for the last 15 years. Tina Fey, Lily Tomlin and Whoopi Goldberg are all past winners. But it’s always great when another woman makes it into the traditionally male pantheon of comedy.

Let me say up front that I’m not a huge fan of Ellen’s day-time talk show, “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” To my taste, it’s too sweet, too schmaltzy and too, well … safe.

But I’m a huge fan of Ellen. For starters, she’s funny as hell. She started out as an emcee at a local comedy club in her native New Orleans. In 1982, a video of her stand-up routine won her Showtime’s “Funniest Person in America” award. In 1988, she became the first female comedian summoned to Johnny Carson’s desk to chat about her performance on “The Tonight Show.”

And if you’ve never seen the episode on the erstwhile Garry Shandling Show where Shandling – in his role as a (fictional) talk show host – tries to persuade Ellen to “come out” on his show (and then ends up sleeping with her), it’s laugh-out-loud hilarious.

Read the rest of this post on The Washington Post’s She The People blog


Image: Ellen Degeneres by bernie.levine (back to no computer) via Flickr under a Creative Commons license

How The Target Boycott Made Me Rethink My Patriotism

When you live abroad for a long time, you tend to identify certain cultural objects that can readily anchor you with a sense of home. They are the things which – for better or for worse – come to signify “America.”

It might be a diner that serves all-day brunch. Or the blissful simplicity of a tumble dryer. Or – depending on your politics – the meteoric rise of a Mama Grizzly politician or a musician for whom the public is Gaga.

For me, that cultural touchstone has always been Target, that iconic superstore of highways and strip malls across America where you can buy everything from toothpaste to DVD players. Whenever we go back to the States, my husband and I devote an entire day to shopping at Target. We even have a running “Target list” on our computer to which we add items regularly throughout the year.

Read the rest of this article at www.PoliticsDaily.com

Image: Target Cart by joannabethpdot via flickr under a Creative Commons license.

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