DANCING WITH THE STARS, PRE-SEASON 25: 11 Sep. 2017

DANCING WITH THE STARS, PRE-SEASON 25:   11 Sep. 2017 BABY NEWS! IT’S A BOY!  Cute red-headed pro Anna Trebunskaya (former ballerina and sometimes-DWTS pro) and Nevin Millan welcomed baby #2 on Saturday, September 2, 2017.  Kaspyan Millan weighed 6 lbs., 14 oz., and was 19.5 inches long.  Baby #1 was daughter Amalya Millan, now age 3.  All are healthy and happy.   NEWS ON Dancing With The Stars SEASON 25 CELEBS Nick Lachey, formerly of the boy-band called 98 Degrees, says that he and pro Peta could end up dancing to a song by his band at some point in Season 25.  Supposedly, none of the band’s songs have been done on DWTS yet.  He says that he’s very competitive against himself to give his all and that he thinks he’ll do okay even though band members didn’t do much dancing. Former Paralympic Swimmer Victoria Arlen is said to have been paralyzed for ten years and to have learned to walk again just a year ago.  She’s thrilled to be learning to dance.  We can only attempt to imagine what she’s been through!  I think I’d react the same way because walking is great and dancing is even better.   AWARDS Guess who just won a Creative Arts Emmy . . .  Dancing With The Stars choreographer Mandy Moore!  Derek Hough just got in on more awards, too–for ‘Hairspray Live’.  You’re still on a roll, you two—keep at it!  (They’re pretty hard to beat!)   It would be nice to have Derek back on the show to dance now and then, but he has so many projects in the works that it doesn’t sound promising.  We’ll have to wait and take whatever we can get.  I enjoyed watching him on “World of Dance” this summer.  Same Derek–sweet, tactful, fun, and talented!  He said after the season ended that he didn’t always agree with the results (I didn’t, either!), so I wonder whether he’ll return as a judge on Season...

WRITING: GENDER-SPECIFIC PRONOUNS/LANGUAGE September 8, 2017

WRITING:  GENDER-SPECIFIC PRONOUNS/LANGUAGE       September 8, 2017 This special, extra weekly issue has been prompted by extraordinary current events. It’s important–please read and share it with others ASAP.   Usage of gender-specific pronouns verbally and in writing used to be straightforward and simple: “he” “him” “his” “boy” “man” “guy” “dude” “male” (and such) → to/about a human male; “she” “her” “hers” “girl” “woman” “gal” “broad” “female” (and such) → to/about a human female.   Nowadays, though, in turns of events that many of us never imagined, genders aren’t always as clear as they used to be; so, pronouns aren’t, either.  If you confuse us with a gender change or with how you identify with gender, we can’t always be sure how to address you.   Recently, here in the good ol’ USA, some people, even children, have gotten into legal trouble after using incorrect gender-related pronouns.  What?  Are you as shocked as I?  What’s next–being arrested for using incorrect grammar in any form?  News flash: If that’s the case, we need a million new jails, yesterday.   People who complain about incorrect usage of gender-related pronouns should do a reality check.  Pronto!  They’ll have to get over themselves and be objective.  With gender-change surgeries going on, and a person looking like one gender but in physical/private reality being the other, the reality for the rest of us is that we’re not always sure what to say and we can’t all be expected to know.  Young children are especially confused or unknowing; in many cases, explaining a gender change to a child is NOT an option.   Whether we jump to conclusions or proceed with caution, we could still say the ‘wrong’ pronoun or something else that unintentionally might offend.  Complainants who can be objective, after all, have to realize that if they were in our shoes, they probably would have as much trouble with such situations and pronouns as we’re having.   The rest of us will do our best as tactfully and courteously as we can.  So, complainants and others, including educators and law-enforcement people, should be reasonable and logical when our pronouns aren’t quite on target—or they might be the ones who get in trouble.   Traditionally, “it” has been used for animals and inanimate objects, and occasionally in reference to a stranger’s baby whose gender we don’t know (“the baby”).  An older child or adult who identifies with or has changed to the other gender is a human being; using “it” is not an acceptable option for...

WRITING: INTERVIEWING & JOURNALISM September 7, 2017

WRITING:  INTERVIEWING & JOURNALISM                         September 7, 2017 An editor or a writer should maintain a consistent tense when writing a person’s quotes/comments—EITHER all present tense (Jones says) OR all past tense (Jones said). An alternate word choice for “says” and “said” is okay occasionally, such as the following: Jones explains that businesses . . .; In addition, Jones believes that . . . ; He adds that when . . . Also, not all statements by an interviewee have to be within quotation marks.  Traditional journalistic writing alternates between quoting (“Telecommunications and office furniture all have to work in harmony today,” says Jones, “or businesses are just throwing their money away.”) and reporting (Jones explains that businesses often buy chairs and aren’t taught how to adjust them for ergonomic comfort.). Decide which tense and quotation method will work best for you in each situation of your interviewing and writing, remember “Just the facts, ma’am” (no editorializing or dirty journalism!), and delight readers with your story.  You can do it!   Many lessons and bits of advice in this writing/grammar series have been taken from Writestyle’s online campus....

DANCING WITH THE STARS, PRE-SEASON 25: September 6, 2017

DANCING WITH THE STARS, PRE-SEASON 25: September 6, 2017 Great news and excitement for you today, Dancing with the Stars fans!  This should really make you ready for the show to return. CASTING CONFIRMATIONS: THE FULL CAST! “Property Brothers’” real-estate expert Drew Scott & pro/reigning Mirrorball champ pro Emma Slater. Singer/Actor Nick Lachey & pro Peta Murgatroyd: Vanessa (Minillo) Lachey & pro Maks Chmerkovskiy. WWE Wrestler Nikki Bella & pro Artem Chigvintsev: Actor/Singer/Dancer Jordan Fisher (Disney & “Hamilton”) & pro Lindsay Arnold. Former NBA champ/ former Knick’s Coach Derek Fisher & pro Sharna Burgess. Former Paralympic Swimmer Victoria Arlen & pro Val Chmerkovskiy. Actor Frankie Muniz (formerly ‘Malcom’ on “Malcolm in the Middle”) & pro Witney Carson. Violinist Lindsey Stirling & pro Mark Ballas. Singer/Dancer Debbie Gibson & pro Alan Bersten. Shark Tank” Investor Barbara Corcoran & pro Keo Motsepe. Actress Sasha Pieterse (“Pretty Little Liars”) & pro Gleb Savchenko. Retired NFL Receiver Terrell Owens & pro Cheryl Burke. I would expect famed dancer Debbie Gibson to do great on this show, wouldn’t you? You may recall that NFL receivers generally do well. Barbara Corcoran appears to be in great shape, but fitness may not transfer into good dancing. I’ve heard that a couple of the youngest ones know how to dance (at least, in other styles), so they’re to be watched.  I don’t know anything about possible abilities of Vanessa, Nikki, Lindsey, Sasha, or Derek, so this should be very interesting. If you know anything about any of those celebs, please write in to share it. We’ll see soon. I do believe that Sharna is overdue to win it all (should have won with race car driver James Hinchcliffe), so I’ll be watching her and her partner closely and likely rooting for them.  It’s nice to have Mark back, and it’s extra nice to have Cheryl back. Dancing with the Stars Fall Premiere:  September 18!  See you then.  But if I get more news before then, I’ll send it to you.   Keep your dancing shoes on!    ...

DANCING WITH THE STARS, PRE-SEASON 25: September 1, 2017

DANCING WITH THE STARS, PRE-SEASON 25: September 1, 2017 Welcome back, Dancing with the Stars fans!  Lots of news and excitement building both for news and for the show to return. CASTING CONFIRMATIONS & RUMORS: Confirmations: “Property Brothers’” real-estate expert Drew Scott & pro/reigning Mirrorball champ Emma Slater (won with NFL star Rashad Jennings last season): Confirmed to you earlier this week.  Reminder: Emma just finished the Hot Summer Nights tour two weeks ago, so I don’t see how she could have had much time with him yet. Singer/Actor Nick Lachey & pro Peta Murgatroyd: Confirmed to you earlier this week. Vanessa (Minillo) Lachey & pro Maks Chmerkovskiy: Confirmed to you earlier this week. WWE Wrestler Nikki Bella & pro Artem Chigvintsev: Confirmed to you last week. Actor/Singer/Dancer Jordan Fisher (Disney & “Hamilton”) & pro Lindsay Arnold. Former NBA champ/ former Knick’s Coach Derek Fisher, who might end up with pro Sharna Burgess. Former Paralympic Swimmer Victoria Arlen & pro Val Chmerkovskiy. Actor Frankie Munizare (formerly ‘Malcom’ on “Malcolm in the Middle”) & pro Witney Carson. Violinist Lindsey Stirling (& which male pro?) While certain pros are very competitive, it’s all in fun, family and friendship.  Mark Ballas says it’s really just about doing their best for their Dancing with the Stars celeb partners—their job, after all. Rumors:  Disney Star Actor Cameron Boyce. Businesswoman Barbara Concoran, longtime investor on “Shark Tank.” “Sharks” Mark Cuban (first) and Robert Herjavec preceded her. Singer Bobby Brown (husband of deceased songstress Whitney Houston). Supposedly, he was in, but late in the game he suddenly left the lineup. IN OTHER DANCE NEWS:  Pros Jenna Johnson and Allison Holker are still in the running to win SYTYCD.  When Jenna returns to Dancing with the Stars, she’ll be in the troupe.  Allison will not be an active pro this season unless another female pro ends up having to bow out. MORE NEWS with the full Dancing with the Stars cast reveal on GMA Wednesday, September 6—and maybe before then with snippets.  See you again very soon!    ...

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