Tuesday, March 5, 2013

LETS MOVE HANGOUT M.O.I will say the First Lady‘s pilot series “Fireside Hangouts” was a success! With live access on three online sites, I would’ve however liked to have had more and a wider variety of participants, but other than that I enjoyed tuning in and watching Mrs.Obama in action. She was warm, friendly, engaging, informative, open and candid, even at one point revealing that she and The President, as she referred to President Obama quite often, worked out together every morning; that she and her daughters,Sasha and Malia take time out regularly to workout indoors by putting on CDs and dancing all around their White House digs; and that as a youngster she enjoyed playing the piano and would love to take up lessons again after the family leaves the White House in 2017. She even got her guests to do the ‘Dougie‘ with her! First and foremost she kept the idea of making good nutritional foods and exercise accessible to all children in the forefront of the half hour dialog and vowed to continue her efforts to bring two other of her initiatives, Let’s Move! Active Schools and the MyPlate Recipe Partnership into effect in the near future. In typical Capricorn fashion, Michelle Obama has taken the fundamental, imperative concept that ‘good nutrition and proper exercise leading to bright, confident and competitive youths who grow up into bright, confident and competitive adults’ and made it fun, practical, relateable and do-able!
And she was the picture of health herself. With glowing skin, and sporting her new bang-do, her hair full of body with a healthy sheen she looked radiant wearing a short strand of large pearls, a blue, grey and black large floral print dress with short sleeves that showed off her famous ‘power arms’ and grey pumps, Michelle Obama shows that the best way to set a good example of good health and beauty, is to be one!
You Go M.O.! ♦

The 2013 Greater New York Human Rights Campaign GalaPolls are showing that NYers are pretty kool with the notion of a lesbian mayor, as City Council Speaker Christine Quinn continues to take the lead in the race for New York City’s Democratic mayoral primary. According to a Quinnipiac University poll released last week, 37 percent of Democratic voters favored Quinn and another poll had 78 percent of NYC voters showing they were  “comfortable” or “enthusiastic” about the prospect of an openly gay mayor. If Quinlan does win she will be the first female and the first openly gay mayor in New York City history. Its certainly what I’ve been expecting ever since a skinny, big-earred, mixed-heritaged, intelligent, 47 y.o.Ilinois senator ran for and won the Presidency of the United States of America, becoming the first African-American to do so. And you can bet there’ll be more ‘firsts’ like these in this prophetic year. Shift Happens in 2013!!! ♦

BERLIN WALL EAST SIDE GALLERYBerlinians are protesting a construction project to move whats left of The Berlin Wall in Germany from its original spot to place somewhere else in order to make room for an access road for new luxury apartments.The Berlin Wall was a barrier constructed by the German Democratic Republic in 1961 meant to cut off West Berlin from East Berlin, preventing massive emigration and defection from the communist Eastern Bloc during the post-World War II period. In November of 1989, the Berlin Wall was torn down in the midst of huge celebrations on both sides. Speed ahead to 2013 where Berlinians are now protesting against the removal of a 70-foot section of the wall’s longest remaining expanse which is covered in paintings and graffiti and dubbed the East Side Gallery.  Viewed as a historical monument by the protestors, the wall is also a popular tourist attraction, containing the famous “Fraternal Kiss” painting showing the two past German leaders Leonid I. Brezhnev and Erich Honecker locked in a kiss. Protesters have successfully prevented any further construction by work crews until city officials, land developers and relevant players in the protest can meet and settle on a solution. Sort of leads back to why the wall was built in the first place doesn’t it? Austerity vs Communism? Oh well, we all know now that history definitely has a way of repeating itself. ♦

HOMELESSA new report claims a record number of adults and children in the city are currently homeless.The Coalition For The Homeless is set to release a study Tuesday that says an average of more than 50,000 people slept in shelters nightly in January. Of those, more than 21-thousand were children.The coalition says the number of homeless is the highest it has been in three decades and that the numbers have gotten much worse under Mayor Michael Bloomberg. The Department of Homeless Services says the report is “not based in reality.” 
Officials said the increase is a direct result of the loss of a popular program which helped the homeless pay for their own housing.
“Well I think you need to look at the full picture,” said DHS Commissioner Seth Diamond. “There are fewer people coming into the shelter system than there were two years ago, 9 percent fewer families came in in 2012 when compared to 2010. The reason numbers have risen is a direct result of the loss of the advantage subsidies, something the coalition aggressively advocated for.”  h/t NY1
Maybe we can get Commissioner Diamond some street cred by getting him out into the streets to patiently explain his fact-finding methods to the hundreds of homeless out here. ♦

Later pilgrims…


Amy Conton is a freelance writer and graphic designer living in New York, USA.