Profile – Connie Schultz

Standard

​I discovered Connie Schultz several years ago. I know that it was on the MSNBC program, Morning Joe, and I know that I intentionally turned the show on, wanting to see her specifically. What I don’t remember is if I watched it thinking, oh, that’s Sherrod Brown’s wife, she’s a writer, let’s hear what she has to say…or if I saw her, and said, oh my gosh, I love her, her husband is Sherrod Brown, I need to check him out. Either way, I’ve fallen head over heels in writerly and senatorily love with both of them, together or apart, it doesn’t matter.

One (two) of my heroes.

There’s some recent talk about a White House run, and if that happens, I will follow them, support them, campaign for them all the way to said White House. And if not, I will count Senator Brown and Ms. Schultz as firmly in my corner even though other than President, I can’t vote for him; I live in New York. However, he speaks for all of us progressive Democrats, and to be honest, what’s good for his state, is good for all of our states. They both speak their minds, and they both speak truth to power. They call it like they see it, and they both do it with a down-to-earth, neighborly, we’ve known you forever way that’s honest. I can only hope that we haven’t forgotten the importance of honesty in this country.

They are for working people what Babe Ruth is for baseball.

Connie Schultz is a Pulitzer Prize winning author (2005 for commentary), a commentator both in print and on television of politics, journalism, and life in general. She currently writes in syndication for Creator’s Syndicate after writing for the Cleveland Plains Dealer for eighteen years. She has published two non-fiction books and is currently writing her first novel.

She and Sherrod Brown have been married for almost fifteen years. She is a a mother of four and a grandmother of seven, and I think if she were actually reading this, and I left that last one out, she would be less than happy with me. They are a blended family, and when she shows pictures of their kids, I have no idea who belongs to who because they are all one family, which is just remarkable and somehow ordinary.

I recently read an article about her by Michael Kruse of Politico (2018) and I watcher her TEDx video from Cleveland State University (2016) that gave me two snippets that I relish as part of my own self and my own journey as a writer, a woman, and a mother, and ir was a clear reminder of why I respect and adore her so much.

How could I not be a liberal?” [Politico, Dec. 21, 2018, when talking about her working class roots, her route to college and single parenthood, unions, grants, health insurance.]

Every moment that I had lived before I got into that newsroom was job experience.” [TEDx, Dec. 14, 2016]

I love her style, her attitude, her kindness, but also her take no nonsense attitude. Say something incorrect or bullying and she will come after you, but not as a bully. She is a teacher (of journalism at Kent State University in her home state of Ohio) and of life and continues to inspire me and cause me to aspire to be her in all of the ways I can attempt (through her Facebook and Twitter). I also want to be able to wear a hat like she wears a hat. I love hats, but I can’t pull them off. She can.

She is everything.

She is also proud of her work (and her family’s) but modest of her accolades. This is but one article that I share with you, but there are others if you Google. However, for the real deal, follow her on either her Facebook or her Twitter. Or both.

47/52 – Yvette Nicole Brown

Standard

Picture used from Yvette Nicole Brown’s website. Picture Credit: Tina B. Henderson (c)2017


The first time I saw Yvette Nicole Brown was on AMC’s Talking Dead. She was a guest, invited on to talk about AMC’s hit TV show, The Walking Dead. When she pulled out her Walking Dead notebook that she kept notes in, I grinned. I also had a Walking Dead notebook. After I agreed with her show theories about three times, she became a favorite of mine. I looked forward to her appearances on the show.
During one episode about Fear the Walking Dead, she referred to her Instagram, and I followed. I had only intended to follow for a few weeks. I mean I didn’t watch any of her shows despite liking her as a person on the talk show.

At some point during those few weeks, I got to see her as a person. She posted honestly, about everything. She posted links to organizations that do good. She posted graphics with encouragement. She posted politics.

If I had to pick two words to describe Yvette Nicole Brown, I would choose Honest and Encouraging. And Kind. And lovely. And supportive. Her Instagram was a breath of fresh air, and not only that, it gave me some moments of clarity and showed me how to stop and take a deep breath.

Her website has the title: Actress, Host, Champion of Kindness, and that pretty much sums up this lady born in Cleveland in 1971. She holds a Bachelor’s in Communication, and was cast in her first role from sending a postcard to the casting director. She has done numerous commercials and small roles, moving to series regular on The Odd Couple and most recently co-starring on The Mayor on ABC. She voices Amanda Waller on DC’s Super Hero Girls and Luna on Elena of Avalor. She is currently also the host of Syfy’s Cosplay Melee. Her CV is too long to list here, but visit her website; you won’t regret it.

Yvette Nicole Brown is uplifting and inspirational. She shares her faith readily, and through that helps me explore my own continuing to grow faith, and helps make me a better person. Just simply by her being a better person. She also doesn’t roll over, she doesn’t pull her punches, and she does it all in a way that she doesn’t regret. I really do admire and try ot emulate her. It is a privilege to read her on a daily basis. I thougth it appropriate to showcase her today, on Thanksgiving, when she gives so much to be thankful for, but not only that, reminds me, and her fans, of what’s important and not to forget what we should be thankful for.

8-52 – Lin-Manuel Miranda

Standard

​Lin-Manuel Miranda can be found all over online. He is currently (at least physically will be back after the tonight’s Oscars) in London working on the Mary Poppins sequel. He has a lively, vocal, opinionated, kind, social media presence. His official website is http://www.linmanuel.com and has all of his current projects and official means to follow him. Other ways of seeing and hearing him are: FacebookTwitter, and YouTube.

He spends a lot of time, along with his projects, talking often about his family, but he guards his son’s privacy. Please remember not to post pictures of his son if you see them out in public.

Continue reading

Alan Rickman (1946-2016)

Standard

The news is still breaking so I apologize for not having a link for the obituary. If you google, there should be several to choose from.

This has been a very sad and difficult week to see people who were such inspirations throughout my life pass away. Those of us who grew up listening to David Bowie and watching Alan Rickman, it’s been extraordinarily hard, which is to say nothing of their families and friends. One of the reasons for these feelings is how much they both transcended genres and decades, exhibiting their talents for all to admire and emulate. Like David Bowie, Alan Rickman could be a chameleon, blending into the background with his subtlety or facial expressions or taking the lead with his huge presence, always looking as though he were snapping a long jacket behind him; for two examples of that, look to his Sheriff of Nottingham and Professor Severus Snape.

Like Bowie, Alan Rickman was 69 (he would have been 70 on February 21st) and he died too early from cancer.

In my twenties, I went through a spell of watching everything done by a couple of actors. Harrison Ford was one, and Alan Rickman was the other. (Norman Reedus is becoming a current one.) I tried to find all of his movies and watch them one after the other. This was probably after Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. He was one of my favorites in that movie. That movie was one of my favorites. In fact, the theme was my wedding song. I could recite his lines verbatim for an annoyingly long period of time, especially threatening to ‘cut your heart out with a spoon!’

I was thrilled when he was set to play Professor Snape in the Harry Potter movies. I couldn’t think of a better choice for the range of that character. Having read the books, I knew what was coming in book/movie seven and Alan Rickman is perfect from sadistic bastard to regretful antihero with the emotion and humor and everything else that his brilliance could come up with for each of his roles.

That journey through Alan Rickman’s filmography brought me to a few gems that I might not have found otherwise. I’ve included those two here along with some others that I’ve seen and would highly recommend, although choosing anything from his imdb or Wikipedia filmography lists would be well worth your time.

The January Man – Ed

Closet Land – The Interrogator

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street – Judge Turpin

Die Hard – Hans Gruber

Quigley Down Under – Elliott Marston

Galaxy Quest – Alexander Dane

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (voice of Marvin)

Portraits in Dramatic Time – this is the brilliance equivalent of Patrick Stewart reading a grocery list. (See video below)

Lee Daniels’ The Butler – President Ronald Reagan

And of course, the aforementioned Harry Potter Movies Series (as Professor Severus Snape), and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (as the Sheriff of Nottingham)

Recs- Inspirational Book

Standard

I’ve been reading this book for about two years.

Every day I would pick a random page and read that page. I’d bookmark it so I knew if I’d read it before.

Twice my Kindle reset me and deleted all my notes and bookmarks, so I had to start again.

I’ve finally finished it, but I’m thinking of starting it again.

Because it’s random you can’t predict what uplifting passage or word of advice will come your way on a given day.

I’ve found it very powerful.

I think you will too.

Under the Tamarind Tree A Secret Journey into Our Souls: Inspirational Quotes About Life, A Reminder of the Inner Magic by John Harricharan