December 31, 2008

Eartha Kitt dies at 81

Eartha Kitt, a singer best known for her timeless rendition of holiday favorite Santa Baby and her role as Catwoman on the original Batman television series, died Christmas Day of colon cancer. Kitt was 81.

The seductive singer and actress, once called “the most exciting woman in the world” by Orson Welles, was born on a cotton plantation in South Carolina to a Cherokee/black mother and a German/Dutch father. Kitt never knew her father and claimed to be a child of rape.

Kitt’s musical hits include Let’s Do It, Champagne Taste, Just an Old Fashioned Girl, Monotonous, Love For Sale, I’d Rather Be Burned as a Witch, Mink, Scmink, Under the Bridges of Paris, and her most famous, Santa Baby, which has been covered by countless artists including Madonna.

In 1958, Kitt made her feature film debut alongside Sidney Poitier in The Mark of the Hawk. She later took over the role of Catwoman in the Batman TV series when Julie Newmar left due to scheduling conflicts.

The singer/actress also had an illustrious stage career, given her first starring role as Helen of Troy by Welles in the 1950 production of Dr Faustus. Kitt continued her electrifying stage performances until months before her death.

"She loved cabaret performances," says long-time friend and publicist Andrew Freedman. "If there was ever an opportunity to do a small intimate venue with about 150 people, that was always her preference."

Although diagnosed with cancer two years ago, Kitt was in remission until her recent relapse.

"She came back strongly. She had been performing until two months ago," Freedman says. "We had dates booked through 2009."

Despite many romances, Kitt married only once, a short-lived union with real estate associate which resulted in a daughter, Kitt.

Source: She Knows

New Year Wishes Messages

It is the time to party away and usher in the New Year in style. And what is the first thing that comes to mind while thinking about New Year? No, apart from the party and drinking! It is New Year wishes. We have compiled some popular wishes for New Year, which can be used in a personalized greeting card, letter or a message. So check out these wishes for New Year and do not forget to wish your family first thing as the clock strikes 12 and the new year slides in slowly.

  • This New Year, may your right hand always be stretched out in friendship, never in want. - Irish Toast
  • May this New Year bring newly found prosperity, love, happiness and delight in your life. - Anonymous
  • "When you're lonely, I wish you Love! When you're down,I wish you Joy! When you're troubled, I wish you Peace! When things seem empty, I wish you Hope! Have a Happy New Year!" - Anonymous
  • This bright New Year is given to me to live each day with zest, to daily grow and try to be my highest and my best! - William Arthur Ward
  • May the dawning of this New Year, fill your heart with new hopes, open up new horizons and bring for you promises of brighter tomorrows. May you have a great New Year. - Anonymous
  • As the new year blossoms, may the journey of your life be fragrant with new opportunities, your days be bright with new hopes and your heart be happy with love! Happy New Year! - Anonymous

Source: Indobase

Is Dane Cook Married?

A lot of people have been raising this question of whether Dane cook is married or has been married to someone. If married who is the lucky woman? We made a research online about Dane Cook's marriage and we found out that all of these things about marriage are just speculations. There are no major newspapers or online magazine or websites talking about or confirming Dane Cook getting married as of this writing.

We will give you more updates on this Dane Cook marriage if there are more information we find online.

Source: A Lady's Confessions

Barbra Streisand: Perfection Is Imperfection

Barbara_Streisand At this point in Barbra Streisand's legendary career, no one can rain on her parade -- not even President Bush.
To add to her stellar list of accolades, Streisand has been given the prestigious Kennedy Center Honor.
"It's a recognition of your country in a sense towards you, the artist, and the recognition of the importance of the arts in general," Streisand told Early Show co-anchor Julie Chen.
Streisand has been a vocal critic of President Bush and many wondered if she would accept the award and attend the traditional White House gala.
"This is a weekend that celebrates the arts and artists, so I shall say that -- art transcends politics this weekend," she said.
On her official bio from the Kennedy Center, they list her job title as director, actress, singer, writer, composer and producer.
"You could add to that activist and environmentalist," Chen said.
Streisand grew up poor in Brooklyn, N.Y. Her father, a teacher, died when she was just 15 months old. The family continued to struggle. Streisand will never forget those early memories.
"My early childhood, we never had a couch. We never had a living room. We only had a dining room. And then my grandmother and grandfather lived in one bedroom and my mother, my brother and I slept in another bedroom, so we never had fancy things," she said. "We moved to another -- a project in Brooklyn and I remember the luxuriousness of this couch! Now I love couches. I never had a doll. I had a hot water bottle."
But those humble beginnings somehow helped Streisand find confidence in herself, even when her mother did not.
"My mother wanted me to join the school system. She kept saying, she was a school secretary, she kept saying 'You have free vacations, summers off and this is going to be good for you.' I kept saying, 'But, mom, I want to be an actress. No, you'll never make it. You're not pretty enough, you're not this enough, you're too skinny.' I was always very skinny. But I owe her a lot because, in a sense, I was proving to my mother that this skinny little girl, unconventional looking, I suppose, could be a movie star," she said.
Besides being a movie star, Streisand became a world class recording artist outselling the Beatles.
Despite the recognition, Streisand admits that her voice is far from perfect.
"I was gifted with a good set of vocal chords, I suppose. I believe in if you tell the truth or -- it comes from your heart, what comes from the heart goes to the heart. So it reaches people," she said.
She also can credit her deviated septum for her success as well.
"I think it helps," Streisand admitted.
Film Career
Streisand made her film debut 40 years ago and became one of Hollywood's leading ladies.
She won her first an Academy Award in 1968's "Funny Girl" and said she knew it wouldn't be her last.
"How do I say this? Belief inspires reality. Perception and belief creates reality. It's a vision. I don't know. I remember it was an awful choice I made wearing the dress I made for the first Academy Award, but I thought to myself, I'm going to win this again. Isn't that terrible to say? But that's the truth," she said.
Streisand was nominated for four more Oscars, and won again for writing "Evergreen," the love theme to "A Star Is Born." She was the first female composer ever to win an Academy Award.
In 1983, Streisand released her 15-year labor of love "Yentl." She was the first woman in Hollywood to star, co-write and produce a film. The film paid tribute to her father, who died when she was an infant.
"I had to become my own father in a sense. And I also had to be everyone else's parent. You know, when you direct, you -- they are your children in a way. So it brings out all those instincts that are dormant sometimes, you know?" she said.
Another big personal triumph for Streisand was "The Prince of Tides," which garnered her seven Oscar nominations.
"What drew you to the book?" Chen asked.
"How human beings can transform and heal through a search for the truth. That's the basis of this story, and understanding your childhood, understanding your parents, forgiveness," Streisand said.
But the film many called the most romantic of all time is "The Way We Were," her 1973 pairing with Robert Redford.
"He was wonderful to work with. I loved working with him. Always interesting. Always in the moment, you know? So we never knew what each other was going to do -- take to take," she said.
In the '70s and '80s, Streisand was visible on the silver screen, but absent from concert stages.
It was stage fright that kept her away from the stage. During her performance in Central Park in 1967, Streisand forgot the words before 135,000 people -- prior to that she never experienced stage fright.
"No stage fright. You know, it was scary. It was wonderful. But I remember it being a horrifying experience. Really embarrassing to forget the words, forget the words. That's why I didn't sing for a very long time until they invented Teleprompters. It still scares me to this day," Streisand admitted.
"What is the biggest misconception about you," Chen asked.
"One? Gosh, I don't know. What do they say? What do they say about me? I'm difficult. Oh, difficult. That's one. Right? I don't know. Maybe in the search for the -- striving for excellence, I think may be perceived as difficult. It's not perfection because there is no such thing as perfection. I remember writing in my journal when I was 15, observing an acting class, that perfection was imperfection. Because, otherwise, it's inhuman, you know? It's almost too perfect," she said.
Well, in the eyes of millions dedicated and adoring fans, she's pretty close to being perfect.
The 31st annual Kennedy Center Honors will be broadcast tonight at 9 p.m. ET, on CBS.

Source: CBS News

How to fix a frozen Zune and other interesting tips


Like almost all Thursday nights, I was out with the guys writing code for the WiX toolset. Also, like almost all Thursday nights, Jenny called me before she headed off to bed. Sadly, tonight she informed me that her Zune had frozen on her walk to work this morning.

Well, I just got home after getting the last set of build system changes in and posted. I decided to take a peek and see if I could fix the ailing music player. It was definitely frozen with its screen dimmed showing one of the menus but not responding to input.

After pressing and holding a few buttons, I decided it was time to hit the Internet. In the first page, I came across this blog entry that did just the trick. Press and hold the Back button and the up on the pad for a few seconds and the Zune will reset. This fixed Jenny's Zune and it seems quite happy, connected and charging.

Reading through the comments here are a few other key combinations that you can use on your Zune:

On - press and hold the Play button.

Sleep - press and hold the Play button.

Off - press and hold the Back button plus down on the pad.

Reset - press and hold Back button plus up on the pad.

Erase - press and hold the Back button plus up on the pad then press then hold Back button plus right on the pad plus Play button. From KB926917.

Format - press and hold the Back button plus up on the pad then press then hold Back button plus left on the pad plus Play button. Formatting will require you to connect your Zune back to a computer for the Zune to be useable again.

Tags: rob, mensching, zune, fix, frozen, reset, on, sleep, off, play, erase, format

Source: Rob Mensching