Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Second Reveal (My Madness of DWTS)

So I've gone a little overboard with Dancing with the Stars lately. But whatever.

First thought of the night: who did Samantha Harris piss off? I mean, she must have really angered someone in the hair and makeup department. They obviously took it out on her, because everyone else looked good, relatively, tonight. Or at leat not as horrific as that hair of Ms. Harris. Mrs. Angrybell's comment "That was just mean what they did to her."

I'm a little surprised that it was Kathy, but not that much.

Oh well, on to next week.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Second Round Madness (Its DWTS Time Again)

First thoughts, it was mean to put Kelly Osbourne next to Joanna Krupa in the line up. Just... not what she needs to feel good there on stage.

Alright, on to the dances.

Joanna and Derek doing the jive. Good song. Really long hair extension. Probalem is that I think Derek has choregraphed a routine that is too fast for her. However, given the tempo the song is going at, he might not have had a choice. Her kick and flicks looked... wrong. When she is in hold, she looks better, but looks a bit lost in open. And a little flat. Mrs. Angrybell thinks she can get better, but that this did not work for her. Without Len there, its like watching me, Angrybabybelle and Mrs. Angrybell giving comments. Not that Len is mean, but none of these judges tonight are going to give the hard comments that Len would. 20 is a nice benchmark for the night, possibly a little high. I would have given a 6.

Natalie and Alec step up. Its nice to see that Alec has to teach her to breathe, as if he does not have enough to do with her. Tonight, they've got the quickstep. They got hosed on the song, at leat for a quickstep. She is not breathing. Footwork is good so far and there seems to be the little rise and fall you get in smooth type dances. I liked the kicks and flicks, but they could have been more precise. Mrs. Angrybell doesn't like the song for this dance at aall. Nice splits from the million dollar mermaid. Carrieanne has started going to Abdul-esque, and its only the second dance of the night. 21 is a nice score, but still just a bit too high. Then again, I tend to agree with Len's scores alot of the time.

Chuck and Anna danced the tango. Mrs. Angyrbell "Oh my lord!" when she saw him sans shirt. Good song, never thought of it as a tango. He does look mean. He has the aggression, and the steps are in time, but too much on his toes, not enough on his heel leads. Yeah, it just did not work for me, especially the final bit where she pulled off his jacket. He was a gamer, but his posture had a problems. Chuck's just glad that "Uncle Len" wasn't on tonight. What dance was Carrieanne watching? It had problems, but she loved it? Or is she just trying to get him back to her trailer? Alright Carrie Ann gave a realistic score, but then Baz gave a 7? Huh?

MJH and Mark took the floor to dance the jive. Watching the fluff it did not look like it was easy to teach her. Mrs Anngrybell "She loks like Minnie Mouse". She is on time, but not enough bounce, even though her hips made an appearance. Mrs Angrybell think she is not sharp either. Mrs. Angrybell thinks that MJH needs to remember that she is an actress and a showoman so "Stop thinking, its a performance!" I agree, thinking can only hurt the team. Did Carrie Ann take something before the show? She apparently sees nothing wrong. Maybe its because Len is gone, so she feels she can do completely positive without any criticism. At least Bruno and Baz had something constructive to say. 19 was too high. MJH can improve, she is not a lost cause.

Oh no, its Michael and Anna! Doing the quickstep! Yikes. Lets see what appens. He had trouble with those stairs, this si snot going well. But then they get into hold. The song is good for this. His hand is messed up in hold. But he is getting the nice little bouncey/rise and fall you should get in this. But the kicks and flicks in the corner were not working for him. Mrs. Angrybell saw improvement. I saw... some but he's not showing me that much. Carrie Ann is positive... again. Thank heavens for Bruno, those 7's were wrong.

Debbie and Maksim have a love-hate relationship. Actually, as they rehearse the tango, I think its more hate-hate. She looks much sharper than last week. All I have to say is where did they dig up this goth rendition of Roxanne. Mrs. Angrybell thinks she looks scared. I think ... I don't know what to think. Parts of it looked good, but parts of it, especially coming out of the spin near the end, it looked off. Bruno, as the night is progressing, is stepping up and being more Len-like. Thank heavens. The 21 would have been high on other nights, however, because of the previous dances, Debbi came off looking so much better by comparison. Should have been 6's, but the first dance scores seemed to have skewed everything for the night.

The dancing hobbit returns with the blonde. Louie has decided that the stoned look did not work for Macy Gray so he is looking a little sharper. Chelsea has to get a decent partner someday. At least this season, they are letting her show off some personality. ANd now its time to jive. Nice flip. Good song. Starts off very nice. He actually looks like he can dance, as opposed to last week. Mrs. Angrybell thinks he is very spry. Ahh but now in the corner he looks like he is losing steam. Nice split from the Hobbit. He looks like he has a second winde, could use some more bounce. Alright, the Hobbit needs some stamina, even tho the guitar leg thing worked for him and almost made up for losing steam. Oh my G-d, Carrie Ann said something negative? I guess Louie is too young for him? And wow, Bruno has gone full on Len there!!!! What is happening? Is this like on NCIS where the characters take on the personality of the desk which they sit at? Baz said something that sounded nice in his Aussie accent. Mrs. Angrybell thinks that the guest judges have been told to be nice since they wont be there next week. The 19 was fair. It was actually probably the right score. The Hobbit improved, and show signs of hope.

Aaron and Karina doing the quickstep. I think that Karina has picked up too much Maksim in her time with him. I swear in the fluff I could have heard Maksim talking through her. Aaron whined a little, but not too much. YES!!!! I love the song. Get in closer Aaron, she wont bite you. Really. Even if you want her too. Mrs. Angrybell thinks he might have been leading. I wouldn't go that far but he looked like he was doing what he was supposed to be taught by Karina. Losing a little steam at the end, but still looking good. Mrs. Angrybell thought it was good, peppy, and she loved the song. Gonzo!!!!!!! Once again, Carrie Ann is positive, Bruno and Baz actually saying stuff based on what happened (hello, did you see how much daylight was between their hips in the hold). The 9s were too high. That was an 8 dance.

Kelly and Louis stepped up next. Doing the tango. Kelly is very, very insecure, but at least she laughs. She needs some color on her. I love the start, she is right on the hip, she is moving crisp. Stop smiling and it would have been perfect. Not a great song, but she is hanging in there. I like the spin turns, but then she starts to stumble. Mrs. Angrybell thinks the dress is godawful, or that it doesn't look like it was good for her. Alright, at the end, she lost it. And it started off so nice too. Who is in the green dress? Its supposed to be Carrie Ann, but there was criticism, with a little edge. She should get 6s and 7s, but Mrs. Angrybell thinks it will be 5s. Alright, the judges got it right, finally.

Kathy and Tony... what can I say about her? Doing the quickstep. And that dress... oh dear. Nice song though. Nice kicks doing down the line. She needs to get in closer to Tony. Her husband will understand. Honest. Mrs. Angrybell thought it was a heinous dress that you would put a 3 year old in because they wouldn't know the difference. Overall, it was nice. But nothing special. Oh dear, Carrie Ann had the same comments I did! Yikes! 6's were right.

Mark and Lacey Schwimmer doing the quickstep. I feel so bad for Mark, because Lacey doesn't listen to the judges. If I was her partner, I bet I'd be lost. Nice song. But she is backleading already. Oops a stumble but nice recovery. Like the little bounce and kicks thing. THey kept in close, but they could have been in closer. Nice trick at the end. Mrs. Angrybell thought it was one of Lacey's better choreographed dances, that it was imaginative at times. Len, I mean Bruno, and I were of the same mind. However, he went a point higher. The 21 was a little high. The footwork was not that good, but then I guess they have to.

Mya and Dmitri doing the jive. Nice BCGC on Dmitri. I love Mya in the fluff when Dmitri apologized! If only she had connected for real. Is that mean? Anyways, the jive is their dance this week. Great song, never thought of it as a Jive. Too long on the intro, but then the song has a long intro. Nice turns, she is very good. Mrs. Angrybell thinks that she is the best female this season. She doesn't look for him when she is not in hold. They worked that song. I have to agree with Mrs. Angrybell. It looked good, it looked crisp, fast, accurate, and there was a story to the dance. Carrie Ann is right about Len not liking it, but the song requires it, since the jive music doesn't really start for a bit. That 27 was right. Big score, but really good dance.

Cheryl pulls the politician on the dancefloor again. Tom is enjoying himself too much, up until he finds out he has the tango. Good song. Trouble is that the heel leads are few and far between in the start of the dance. Nice kicks, but still no heel leads. Turns ok. Towards the end, he starts to lose the music. Not that he was off tune, but not with the music fi that makes sense. Then that ending was a near disaster. I agree with the judges. It was a good dance, but it lacked some flair. It lacked passion. The 6's were right on.

Donny and Kym were the tail-end charlies tonight. And the old dude is doing the jive. Let's see how he handles this. Mrs. Angrybell says of Kym's outfit: Sheena meets Xandu. I think that Kym feels with Edyta gone, that she needs to pick up the torch when it comes to costumes. Good song. Mrs. Angrybell thinks he is a spunk dude. I really like this. His footwork is not perfect, but his showmanship is great and covers it up. Mrs. Angrybell says " I like watching him, maybe he get more technical as it goes on." I gave it an 8, so I agree with the scores. Donny has a lot going for him. He just needs to get better on technical stuff for his footwork.

All in all, everyone improved this week, which makes it so much harder. If the amateurs had come out last week like this, it would have been easy. The Dancing Hobbit showed real improvement. Debbie Mazur doesn't look long for the contest, but this dance is not one she should go out on. Kelly Osbourne had a bit of a stumble this week, but she showed enough to demonstrate that last week was not a flash in the pan.

So where does that leave us? Both Mrs. Angrybell and I think that the week member of the herd is Tom DeLay. Chuck Liddle should be in danger as well, but, DeLay is leaking oil already. Put him out of his misery quick before he does real damage to himself.

Surprises of the week: Michael Irvin, Louie Vito, and Debbie Mazur. They all did much better this week. Michael and Debbie may not make it two more weeks, but they can at least say that they did not embarass themselves. Louie Vito this week showed you can teach a Hobbit to do ballroom. Now can Chelsea work miracles and make him a contender?

My favorites have not changed that much. Aaron is improving more than Natalie. If Natalie want's to go deep, she needs to relax and dance. Aaron needs to cut the attitude and just listen to Karina. If he can keep the attitude in check, he could go far.

Mrs. Angrybell thinks Mya is head and shoulders above all of them. Of the men, she thinks that Mark and Aaron are going deep. She thinks that while Donny can go far, he is not going to go all the way to the finals.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

And the End of the Three Nights of Premier Madness (Yes, itms DWTS results recap time)

So it leads off with the recall dance (or whatever they call it). And in no surprise to me it was Kelly and Louis. Well deserved in my opinion.

After the interminable lights on, lights off, red-light and whatnot, we finally found out who joined the losers club (which was hilarious. Good to see some people can have a sense of humor about failure). Ashley went home early. Which is a bummer because Edyta won't get to show off her body and try twist like a pretzel.

I have to say the Adam Corrola pep talk. As soon as I can find a clip of it, I'm posting it.

And the viewers sent home Macy Gray. Thank you America. Now I don't have to scold you. I have to say, I loved how Jonothan said, with a straightface, "I just like seeing the transformation of her and how she's changed into a ballroom dancer." It was like Crash Davis has gone to him and given him the list of sports cliches, as modified for ballroom dancing.

Who should go home next? Well, if she doesn't get it together it could be Kathy Ireland. The Dancing Hobbit (aka Louie Vito) is in the same boat.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

And Now For the Women to Add to My Madness (Yes, more of my DWTS Madness)

The women looked a lot more happy to be doing their group thing to start off the show. And quite frankly, I enjoy watching them more than the men. I mean, how much Maksim can one person take? Apparently Karina has an answer about that.

Ok, that was mean.

Mrs. Angrybell believes that tonight Samantha Harris has gone old Hollywood. AngryBabybell is snoozing, so she probably won't have much to say.

In the lead-off slot was Debi Mazar and Maksim. If the fluff in the begining is any indication, they must be fun to watch in practice. Sort of like a train wreck over and over. As for the dancing, the salsa, Mrs Angrybell is stunned by the lack of Mazar's hip action. I think she is good at recovering from mistakes that she makes. But she really needs to look up a bit. Mrs. Angrybell thinks that Maksim is the cutest guy out there, but he keeps forgetting that he is not supposed to be center of attention (he's supposed to be the frame, not the picture -- hasn't he seen Dirty Dancing during the Patrick Swayze retrospective weekend?-Mrs Angrybell). It was a 16, probably the right score.

Up second is the Teenage Witch and the Mark. Melissa Joan Hart looks pretty good for having two kids (trimmed down since those mean tabloid shots of her at the beach-Mrs Angrybell). I'm a little afraid that Mark says he was such a "Big Fan" of Sabrina the Teenage Witch. MJH and Mark drew the Viennese Waltz. Mrs. Angrybell is pulling for her. The song, however, blew. Slow and schmaltzy. Her feet are going about where she is supposed to be, but is missing a little something on the rise and fall. Probably because she is too much on her toes all the time and not doing heel leads. Mrs. Angrybell thinks she needs to stop thinking so much when she is about to do something (i.e. change of the step). G-d love Len for the sickly comments! For all that, she gets the sign of the beast with an 18. Mrs. Angrybell and I agree, it should have been 7s.

Dancing in the third position, Mya and Dmitri. Dancing the Viennese Waltz. And they got another sappy song. Mrs. Angrybell says she looks better than MJH. Have to agree, she does seem to flow better. Mrs. Angrybell thinks she can't go to far, saying she can't have that many fans watching. I'm not so sure. She looks good in this one, especially for a first week dance. Len has a good point regarding the technical nuances of the dance, again, but people don't like it. And we have our first Len-Bruno fight of the season. Surprised the peace lasted so long. Dmitri looks like he's been dealt a good hand, he better follow the example of Cheryl and not of Lacey. Ok, the 21 was low, but it was also a message to Dmitri. Probably should have been straight 8's.

The second of the cougars takes the dance floor: Kathy Ireland with Tony. Hopefully she can not look as nervous as she did when she walked down the stairs when she gets on the floor. And then there is Tony, whom Mrs. Angrybell thinks looks like a gigolo (and not in a good way). I think Tony has his work cut out for him. No hip action, this could be uglier than I thought. On the plus side, she is keeping time, mostly. And then she misses it entirely. Mrs Angrybell thinks she has lead feet. Starting point, she needs to take smaller steps. Apparently, they were dancing a Salsa. Oh boy, Tony got dealt a bad hand this season. As Tom Bergeron says, "Let's not over share". The 16 was fair. Maybe a little too merciful, but then how do they justify that score when compared to what they did with Melissa Joan Hart. Hart clearly did a better routine and got almost the same score. Oy gevalt!

Natalie Coughlin and Alec step on the floor next. Maybe this will break Alec's current streak of going out early. Dancing the salsa, a club dance. Ok, she may be flexible enough to challenge Edyta. Let's see. Mrs. Angrybell says "Wow! Hip action!" To me, it looks a little sedate, not sexy enough for a salsa. And the song is not helping them either. Really, the men got great songs. The women are getting hosed so far. Natalie's problem is that if she gets off on her timing, she shows it right away, and then looks a little lost. This is not good for the showmanship. Not as good as I hoped, but she looks to be teachable. I agree with Len on this. A 19. Probably right.

Now for my least favorite "star", Macy Grey. Is it just me, or does she look stoned when she is practicing with Jonothan? At least they got a decent song for their Viennese Waltz. Surprisingly, its not as bad as I would expect it o me. Mrs. Angrybell wonders if she keeps her mouth open to catch flies, since its always open when she dances. She... oh lets not share too much. Let's just say it could have been worse. The 15 was generous in my opinion. I like Jonothan, but please America don't vote for her.

Then comes Joanna Krupa and Julianne's brother (alright, not fair, his name is Derek). As a side note, are all the members of the Jackson family fans of the show? (LaToya in da house.-Mrs Angrybell) Back to Joanna and Derek doing the salsa. Hip action check. Mrs Angrybell thinks that Joanna looks a like a stripper Big Bird in that outfit. I think Len will be happier with the sex in this dance. She keeps up pretty well, but she gets a little lost in middle with the hand thingy that they did. My suspicion, however, is that she is not good with her footwork, because Derek kept her in place most of the dance. And why is Tom DeLay so interested in this? Hmmm? Yup, Len liked it. Bruno gushing, check. Carrie Ann... saying something Abdul-esque. A 24 is pretty high, I would have thrown in a 7 I think. Mrs. Angrybell thought it was way too high, even though she thought it was very good.

Louis gets to dance with someone shorter than himself! Kelly Osbourne is trying to be lady. Ok, lets see how this works out. This Viennese waltz actually starts out kind of nice. She looks a little lost in the open, but when she links up with him, she gets right back into it. Nice little tempo change. Mrs Angrybell thinks she got hosed on the outfit (who thought hot pink wings was a good idea, seriously?). Oops, lift!!!! Carrie Ann will have a fit. I liked it. Can Louis make something out of this wild child? A 23, good score. Probably where I would have had it. Mrs. Angrybell still likes Mya's dance better.

Up next, the relays. Let's see how this one shakes out since there was much more parity in this group than with the men. First up, the foxtrot relay with Debi, Kathy, Joanna, and Natalie. Gotta love Kathy's comments ("13 times in SI but I never had a sport").

Natalie and Alex lead off and look fairly elegant. The whole evil look works for this dance, or at least this song. But some smiles would be better. I think that Natalie is better suited to smooth. How odd. Then Kay and Tony take the floor and show a lot of improvement, at least for Kathy. She still looks nervous, lost, and and a little off time, but it was better, even with the stumble at the end. Joana and Derek glide on after that. Joanna looks more nervous on this, and not as sure, but once again Derek choreographs it so that she looks good. Finally there is Maksim and Debbie. Looks better, even if she is moving her head too much in hold. And with a lift, is Maksim already throwing it in with Debbie? Mrs Angrybell and I both pick Natalie for the win on this round, but I think that Joanna is showing as a bit of a surprise. I am surprised that they picked Joanna for the top spot.

The next group, Mya, Macy, MJH, and Kelly, step up with their partners to do the cha cha cha relay. G-d help us is all I can think for some of them. Kelly is showing some spunk.

Macy leads off and looks as lost as she did in her first dance. Mrs Angrybell thinks she needs to cut down on the drugs. I think she just walked through it and did a couple of hip bumps. Poor Jonothan. Next up MJH with Mark. MJH needs to forget being a mom and act like she's something else. Not much hip action, but at least there was some recognizable cha cha cha steps. Then there is Mya and Ditiri. Too much acting, not enough dance for Len, I'm sure. However, when they are dancing, her feet are going in the right places. Not a good end to that routine. Finally there is Kelly and Louis. Footwork is nice, but the hip work needs, well, work. Sometimes it is there, sometimes it not there. Mrs Angrybell thinks that Kelly is doing a much better job than she ever thought she would do. Too bad about that misstep at the end. Mrs. Angrybell ranks (from 1st to 4th) Mya, Kelly, MJH, and Macy. I pick Kelly, Mya, MJH, and Macy. I enjoy how Carrie Ann couldn't think of something nice to say so just went with "find the essence of the dance". The officials (4th to 1st) Macy, MJH, Kelly, and Mya mean that Mrs. Angrybell called it.

Mrs. Angrybell's pick for the night: Mya. Kelly Osbourne is the dark horse who came out of nowhere. Natalie looks like she has something, just as Joanna does. Macy Gray has to go first.

My pick for the night: Kelly Osbourne. Yes, she surprised me, big time. I think I probably wrote something unflattering about her before.

Now we've seen them all. So here is my early handicapping of it all. And I have to say, if the early results are anything like the final results will be, then this season will be one full of surprises.

Why, you may ask? Well, the smart money, based on past seasons, is to bet the athletes over the actors and the rest sort of just act as filler till it gets to the final four. This time, the athletes came out and looked, well, flat. The Dancing Hobbit is cute and all, but I don't think he is really committed to this. Chuck Liddell is committed, but I'm not sure his learning curve is going to be fast enough to hang in this for too long. Natalie looks good, but she really, really needs to work on the showmanship angle, or its just going obscure her abilities. Right now, Michael Irvin looks lost.

The singers and actors, on the other hand, are looking strong this year. Mya looks good on the dance floor. Kelly and Joanna, quite frankly, amazed me at times. Especially given how well reality stars and models tend to show in this. Part of it has to do with their partners. Derek's biggest gift in the seasons he's been on this show have been his ability to recognize the weaknesses of his partner, and then work around it with their strengths. Louis Van Amstel, to me, always seems like an old school guy. The sort you expect to be running a football squad like Mike Singletary wants to run the 49ers this season (as in we're gonna run the ball up the middle even when they know we're going to run the ball up the middle). Louis just takes his partners and somehow pounds the basics into them. Then he turns around and uses those basics to make the flashier, gimick filled routines look bad. With Kelly, the question to me is how committed she can remain to this after success in the first week. With Joanna, my question is whether she can do this when she has less time to prepare.

As far as the men go, usually the old guys are the weaker members of the herd. This time, at 51, Donny Osmond is the oldest of XY crowd. And he's making the rest look bad. Part of it has to do with almost five decades of performing. He may not have done ballroom before, but he's done a dance routine or two I'm sure. And he takes direction. Add in the fact that he has Kym Johnson (self-proclaimed 'Wonder from Down Under'), and you have a potent combination. She tends to go more towards Derek's style than Maksim's, and in this competition, I think that's what you want.

On the men's side, the surprise for me was Aaron Carter. Now, I cannot stand him. He annoyed me when he was in the news all the time. He has an attitude. He thinks he's all that and a bag of chips. However, he drew the right partner for that in Karina. Karina knows more than a little about handling someone like Maksim... er I mean Aaron.

My original favorite on the men's side has not dissappointed me. Mark Dascassos did well last night. However, he has the problem of probably not being as well known as some of the others (Iron Chef America notwithstanding). Also, he has the problem of partnered with Lacey Schwimmer.

Lacey Schwimmer and Dimitri Chaplin both have good partners this year. Both have "stars" who are in shape, somewhat coordinated, and able to do the routines that they are given by their professionals. However, both Schwimmer and Chaplin have demonstrated repeatedly that they are more interested in the fans than the judges. Now, while you do need to play to the fans, ignoring the judges, and the dance syllabus, is something you do at your peril. Smart professionals have broken the rules in the past, but they did it in the right way. Schwimmer and Chaplin all too often abandon the ballroom element in favor of doing something more flashy, and off syllabus. And neither of them have profitted from it over the past couple of seasons. If they don't get with the program, or at least go back and look and see how, for example, Karina and Derek have broken the rules in the past, then there going to go out sooner than they should.

So here is how it looks from my point of view now:
Should make the finals: Natalie, Mya, Donny, Mark.
Dark Horses: Joanna, Kelly, and Aaron
Who needs to go right now: Macy Gray and Louie Vito. And yes, it pains me to say that Tom DeLay shouldn't go yet.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Its Back, The Madness Starts Now!!! (Dancing With the Stars, what else would this be?)

So this my live, taped and tivoed delayed, blogging of the show plus my thoughts (like you really care about any of it). Well a little comment about the Boys Are Back in town routine.. why did they all look so embarrassed coming down from the ceiling? I mean even Maksim, the ultimate in "watch me" looked like he'd rather be anywhere else. As Mrs. Angrybell stated, "the uber macho ones were showing off their guns". AngryBabybell is sitting watching going "whoa what is this?"

First up were Aaron and Karina doing the Cha Cha Cha. Mrs Angrybell starts it with "My G-d the outfits". His arms may be flying all over the place and sometimes not there at all. At times, he looked almost like he was doing it. At times, he was completely missing some of the basics. He has potential, which bums me as I don't like him and his schtick. Mrs. Angrybell thinks he is going for the bad boy thing. The 22 is probably right, maybe a point too high. I gave it a 7.

Following up Aaron was Chuck Liddell and Anna. First impression, he shows his nervousness by looking mean. He may need to re-purpose that for dancing. He drew the foxtrot as his first dance, not necessarily playing to a strength, or for that matter easy to pick up right away, but who knows. He needs to get in close to her. Yes, she's married, but its a dance, so get in close to her hip. There are worse things in life. But, moving on, I liked he was game for it, however, he was so nervous. First thing he needs to work on: smiling. Second thing, relaxing. There were times he almost looked like he wanted to have his feet in the right place at the right time, but he was so nervous it was tripping him up. I veered between Len and Bruno in watching this dance. Just remember, there was a cowboy who looked even worse on his first dance last season. So a 16 was the score. I think if I put more down, Mr. Liddell might have something to say to me. First time out, I would have given him a 6.

So of course, it makes sense to go with another martial artist after Liddell. Mark Dascassos and Lacey take the floor. Now, I really don't like Lacey. Mrs. Angrybell really, really doesn't like Lacey. All I can say is that at least this year, she looks like she is getting into better shape. And they are dancing the Cha Cha Cha and got a good song. He has hip movement, but it almost feels like he is a little back on heels some times. Mrs. Angrybell liked that he was smiling, and felt he had a little of showman to his schitck. Then there was the actual kung fu stuff, which I'm sure Len did not like. Overall, a good dance. Not sure why, but the suspicion is that it was Lacey's choreography, which has always been a lacking. Yup, Len, didn't appreciate it. The 21 was fair.

Did the apple far from the tree with Ashley Hamilton (and Edyta as his partner)? So far they are keeping it close, sharing the same partner. Edyta starts off the season strong with a backless number. He is having the standard problem with no heel leads at times, but he seems to be in time at times. Mrs. Angrybell thinks that they got hosed with their song. It was a good effort. However, he needs to work on his feet, get some smaller steps going. I was more with Len on that critique. The scores were harsh. A 15, really? They gave Lidell a 16 and he didn't hit a single step or have any real showmanship. (Please Mr. Liddell, don't hit me too hard!)

Up next the Wonder From Down-Under and The Showbiz Legend. That's right, Donny and Kym, got to dance up a storm, or at least try. Interesting song, the overture from Chicago. It works for his schtick. I liked. Footwork looked great. He kept up with some nice open stuff that Kym threw at him in the first week. It was not perfect, but it was good for a first week. Surprise, surprise, Len did not like the theatrics. 20 was a bit of a gyp. I think it was worth at least a 7, possibly an 8.

Louie Vito and Ms. Hightower took the floor next. Everything about Louie is tentative and scared as he starts the routine. And as Mrs. Angrybell points out "they're off on the music and he looks like an oompa lumpa". Though he did a nice little spin of her, but that was because he could stand still through it. He tried. I thought it was ugly. Like uglier than Liddell 's (please, please don't hit me!). Are the judges being told that they need to keep him on for some demographic? Mrs. Angrybell is now calling him "Louie 'The Dancing Hobbit' Vito". 19? They must be smoking crack to have given him that.

Michael Irvin and Anna came up next. Dancing the Cha Cha Cha. Someone needs to clue Anna in that doing solo stuff like that is going to do one thing: piss off Len. But they did get a good song. Too bad his foot work is not so good. He has some hips to him, but he dancing a bit hunched and isn't hitting the steps on the cha cha cha portion. A 13 was really harsh. I mean, he as there, trying. I'm pretty sure that Master P got better than a 13 and he was really not trying.

Tom De Lay came out next with Cheryl. Let me just say, this is so weird. Dancing the Cha Cha Cha. Oh this will be so weird with this very conservative guy. To Wild Thing. Mrs. Angrybell's comment "Abraham Lincoln just rolled over in his grave." This man is lacking in rhythm. But he is really trying. I agree with Mrs. Angrybell when says "He wasn't as bad as I thought he would be." And they gave him a 16, which leaves me saying "huh?"

So then comes the first relay. Ashley and Edyta started it and he looked a little too stiff. Liddell brought out Cheryl. Liddell and looked better than during the foxtrot. So maybe there is a little hope? Probably not. Then its Donny and Kym. He makes it look like he is having fun, and it covers up when he misses his steps, which is not nearly as often as the rest of the men in his group. Then there was the flying, dancing hobbit and Chelsea. It sort of resembled a dance, on his part, but not that much more. To me, Donnie and Kym were the clear winners. The rest, 6 of one, half a dozen of the other. Donny, stop showing off the emotion so much, you didn't make the finals of the Miss America Pageant. (Mrs. Angrybell thinks that they cried less than Donny did.)

The second relay was the Viennese waltz. Aaron and Karina came out looking pretty good. Can't say too much more than that. Mark and Lacey followed up, and looked elegant. He had some trouble with his footwork but covered it ok, I thought. Then came DeLay and Cheryl going for older and distinguished. They kept it basic, but it still looked a little uncomfortable for him. Then there was Anna and Jerry Rice's understudy. Posture, ugly, movement not so good and footwork, well, at least if he hits me it wont be like Liddell hitting me for what I thought of his footwork. Mrs. Angrybell liked Aaron the best. I liked Mark the best. Mrs. Angrybell called. This second group looked stronger than the other group.

Mrs. Angrybell's pick of the men is Donny. Aaron is good, according to her, but he is a bit of a spaz who needs to learn some control.

Of the men, I have to say that Donny looked the best. I put Mark second. I think he can improve quicker than most of the others. Dark horse: Aaron.

Have to wait for tomorrow night to get a bead on the women.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Why Me?

So I have this case. And I have had to associate in counsel from another state to deal with issues in that state. Lets call this attorney Attorney S. He bills by the hour.

That is understandable.

What is not is how he is such a freakin' slow talker. By the time he has 3 words out (usually taking him 2 minutes) I know where the sentence is going and am tryign to finish it for him!!!!!!

Add to that he is a slow worker. And a very, very conservative guy. Attorney S is the equivalent of General McClellan. He has the slows. I feel like asking him if I can borrow his bar card so that I can somethign done over there rather than wait for him to finish his next sentence.

G-d save me from this!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

What is going on in D.C.?

So. Yeah. Ok, here goes.

What the frack is going on in Washington D.C. right now? And who is calling the shots on foreign policy. Because whoever it is, needs to get their heads on straight and remember who they should back and who they should shun.

In the past, I have expressed my displeasure with the way that President Obama has been extending his hand to dictators, bowing to foreign potentates, and generally apologizing for things for which we should not apologize. But now, the Obama Administration seems to want to throw out all logic.

What am I talking about? Well, today's example is the announcement from the State Department that the U.S. will be suspending aid to Honduras because it ousted its president. Not content with that little bon mot, the State Department has also announced that they will not recognize the results of the scheduled elections if the deposed president is not returned to power.

Hmmm. Let's see. The deposed president of Honduras, Jose Manuel Zelaya, was duly elected by the people in what was regarded as a fair election. However, Honduras has a clause in its constitution. It states, that a president is limited to only one term as president. Furthermore, it is unconstitutional for the president of Honduras to seek another term of office.

Now, perhaps I am a little biased against Mr. Zelaya. After all, he counts as one of his political allies Hugo Chavez. Anyone who counts him as an ally is immediately suspect, especially when it comes to maintaining a democracy.

So what did Mr. Zelaya do? He attempted to hold a constitutional convention. However, he did not follow the rules. So the Honduran Supreme Court struck him down. They he tried to hold his own private referendum on the issue. But he failed to comply with the law. So the Honduran Supreme Court struck him down again. And again, Mr. Zelaya ignored the order of the court and ordered his supporters to try and storm the army base where the ballots were kept.

Let's see. Illegal convention. Illegal referendum. Contempt of the Supreme Court's orders. If this was the United States, there would be impeachment hearings so fast that CNN would be hard pressed to come up with a snappy title and logo.

However, in Honduras, there is a problem. When they drafted the Constitution, they failed to put that mechanism in for this type of situation. So the question was taken up, apparently, by the Honduran Supreme Court. And they ordered the Army to remove him from power.

Now, there is a very good reason for this. Honduras has had a series of dictators. When they created their constitution, they were very mindful of this. And so they made the prohibition against multiple terms of office for the president. Was there a better solution? Maybe. But that was the solution that their mechanism of government chose.

Remember, this was a government that was freely elected. A government that is standing for election in a few weeks. The elections in Honduras have not been delayed. Zelaya could not have legally run for office. So why then, is the U.S. penalizing these people for ensuring that their system of representative democracy?

Have we suddenly run out of oppressive dictatorships to penalize? Or illegitimately elected governments that disregard human rights and support terrorism?

The only thing I can think is that Obama is trying to curry favor with Chavez's crowd. Either that or Secretary of State Clinton has decided this is a good idea. Either way, it undercuts our core principals. How can we say we support sovereignty of other governments which have the support of the electorate, when we demand that a demagougue who has violated constitutional law while in office be returned to power when he was legally deposed?

This is just nuts.

Then again, I guess this administration believes that meeting with dictators and would be dictators is good form. Then again, I suppose when President Obama stated in his inaugural speech,
To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history, but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.
I guess he meant that we would also fight to restore you to power. I can't wait to see what President Obama's Administration does next. I'm sure it will disappoint me.