Nothing much new. Just got gussied up to take part in a “live via satellite” Q&A with talk show host and comedian Steve Harvey, who is just starting a new season of his show. My question to him: What do you think it is that makes bald men so sexy?

Relaxing on set . . . sort of.

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Hanging out with my co-inquisitor, Jessica.

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Considering a new path in the TV industry: “Weather Bitch.

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While in “hair and makeup” (also known as “the ladies’ room”), I stopped to take a couple of self-portraits. Now, I loathe the “bathroom selfie”, but this was one of those days when I thought I cleaned up real good, so I thought I’d give it a shot. Not bad.

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Image  —  Posted: September 16, 2013 in Uncategorized

Since I haven’t checked in for a while, I thought I’d give all my WLS buddies a look at 2003-me and 2013-me.

Image  —  Posted: August 27, 2013 in Uncategorized

will-work-for-food-unemployment-cartoon-390x220Yep, it’s time once again for my pity party. Excuse me while I make myself comfortable on the  potty as I present to you the “List of Places I Have Applied to Work and Not Gotten a Job.”

For those who don’t know, I lost my 16-year, full-time job with no notice at all in November of 2008. Since then, I have not been able to find any full-time employment, anywhere. No full-time jobs IN my field; no jobs OUT of my field. No low-end retail jobs. Home Depot isn’t interested. Neither is Petco.

And I am left singing the Dusty Springfield/Pet Shop Boys song, “What Have I Done to Deserve This?”

Without further ado, here’s the list. Keep in mind that these are only the ones that I remembered to put on the list I have been keeping for 4 years. I’m sure there are others that slipped through the cracks.

Trans Digital Media, LLC 
WFSB-TV Channel 3 
Time-Warner NYC
Boardroom.com 
Penny Press 
Stratford Animal Control 
Banfield- Charter Hospitals 
NBC UNIVERSAL (1)
Essex Television Group
World Wrestling Entertainment
Triple Threat 
Alliance 
Televerse
Meredith Media
Max Films 
Bret Stern Productions 
Conn. Film Center, LLC
Home Depot (1)
CreativeWorks
Connecticut School of Broadcasting
WTIC/WTXX-TV (1)
Movement Pictures 
Wheelhouse 
State of CT Judicial Branch
Petco (1)
ORLive, Inc. 
Rockstar Games
GE New York
Time Warner 
American Cruise Lines
WTIC/WTXX-TV (2)
Greenfield Consulting Group
Heart Newspapers/SCNI
Mountain Lake PBS
Plattsburgh Public Television
NBC Universal (2)
Soho Editors
National Media Connection
Blue Chip Films
Leopard Films 
Cablevision
Adecco
Try It On Everything, LLC
MTV Networks
Nickelodeon
A&E networks
Hertz
Home Depot (2)
ESPN
The Walt Disney Company
ABC News Digital
Mediastorm.biz
Borders Books
Daymon Worldwide, Inc.
Stop & Shop
Purdue Pharma
Starbucks
City of Bridgeport
Tribune Company
Grey Healthcare Group
Wholesome Wave
Fox Networks
United Technologies/Hamilton Sundstrand
North/South Productions
Soho Editors (again) 
Priceline.com Incorporated 
Leopard Films (again)
Creative Circle
Encompass Digital Media
Televerse Media (again)
Melissa & David
Tasti D Lite
Roger Wilco Productions
NBC Universal (3)
GoodLife Productions, LLC
Petco (2)
Recovery Network of Programs
Creative Benefit Planning
Whole Foods
Connex Credit Union
NBC Universal (4)
March of Dimes Foundation
Peoples Bank
Blue Flame LLC
Penny Publications (again)
United Biosource Corporation
A&E Television Networks
Medco
Prudential
Top Prospect Group
Spark Productions NYC
Katie Brown Workshop
Essex Television (again) 
Island Company
Anonymous
DigiWorks Media
Look At Me Now Entertainment
Whole Foods
Blue Sky Animation
Transit Time Measurement System
My Tupelo Entertainment
Connecticut Public Television
Zackin Publications Inc.
Advantage xPO
Petco (3)
Blue Buffalo Pet Products
Homeserve USA
NBC Universal (5)
ProSearch 
Bunker Media
St. Vincent’s Hospital
Whole Foods (again)
Randstad
DiGa Vision
Yale University
Cortell
Bongo International
AC Nielsen
AAA
ECA
Teavana
Care.com
Anonymous reality TV program
Circulation Specialists
Ernst & Young
McIntyre Group
Girl Scouts of CT
Ironik Design and Post
Companions and Homemakers
Top Prospect Group
Triple Threat TV (again)
Spectraforce
American Cyber Systems
WTNH-TV

THE REASON FOR MY FREEZIN!

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March is not known as the warmest of months in Connecticut.

While the average temps run in the high 20s, we have had years where those numbers have dropped to 9 degrees (1972), 1 degree (1984), zero (1960) and MINUS SIX (1967.) March is a month that has been known to come “in like a lion” and go out like a bigger, angrier lion.

The Great Blizzard of 1888

 It’s even been known to bring one helluva blizzard.

It’s obviously not a good month to do things that involves removing warmth from the human body, especially voluntarily. But I will be doing exactly that, and for a good cause.

On the 3rd of March, St. Baldrick’s Foundation participants like me are sure to be even colder than we usually are after our locks are shorn right down to the scalp. I’m doing it again (my SEVENTH time!) to help give kids with cancer, their parents and friends a reason for hope, by going under the clippers once again for St. Baldrick’s Foundation.

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And that means that once again, I am asking your help and support.

What began as a challenge between friends has grown into the world’s fastest growing volunteer-driven fundraising opportunity benefiting childhood cancer research, funding more childhood cancer research grants than any organization except the U.S. government. And a whopping 82 percent of your donation goes directly to that research!

Your donation will give hope to infants, children, teens and young adults fighting childhood cancers. So when I ask for your support, I’m really asking you to support THEM!

To donate, visit my St. Baldrick’s web page.

Click the “Make a donation” box to give online, or donate by phone or mail. If you happen to be in my area, I’m happy to accept in-person donations by check or in cash. And of course, your donation is tax-deductible.

Thank you – not just from me, but from the kids and families who need hope, help and support.

motivation

August 29, 2012

Dear President Obama and Mr. Romney:

I have never not voted in an election. When I was in college, approaching voting age, I could not wait to be able to vote. To me, it was right up there with getting a driver’s license and being able to legally drink as a sign of having attained adulthood. The first candidate I voted for was John Anderson, on November 4, 1980, and I remember walking out of the voting booth with the satisfaction of being a “grown-up” and the pride of being part of the democratic process.

Through the years, I have always voted, always made the time in an often busy schedule, always appreciated that we, as Americans, have the ability to elect the people who will lead us. I’ve nagged friends to vote as well, reminding them of the millions of people on this planet who do not have that freedom.

2012 will be the ninth time I will have the freedom to elect the President of the United States, Sadly, it will be the first time I will think about staying home and not voting.

This nation – the “greatest country on Earth” – is a mess. Although we, the people, have been repeatedly told that “the recession ended in 2009”, no one believes it. And by “no one”, I mean the ninety-nine percent of Americans who are not comfortably well off. The 99% that don’t have trust funds and hedge funds and off-shore bank accounts. The 99% who don’t have steady jobs, or jobs at all. Who have to worry about whether they are sick enough to visit a doctor or a hospital and don’t have any health insurance. The 99% who are facing foreclosure and bankruptcy. The 99% who are facing a future that holds no hope for a better life, because things just keep getting worse.

The 99% that are scared to death.

I know, because I am one of them.

I was laid off from a 16-year job in November of 2008. I am coming up on four years without steady, stable, reliable full-time employment, without sick days, and without a retirement plan. It has left me and my husband without health insurance as we are no longer able to afford it on our own. Now, he is unemployed as well. Our annual income has dropped from roughly $120,000 to less than $35,000. We are hanging on to our home by our fingertips and we both know that, given another 6 to 12 months without employment, we will be without a place to live.

I know I am not alone in feeling that no one – not those already in office nor those running for election, neither Democrat nor Republican nor Tea Party – really cares about “the rest of us.”

I am not the unemployed depicted by the GOP and the conservative media. I do not want to be unemployed nor am I enjoying my time away from work. I am not “funemployed.” I am not lazy, unmotivated, uneducated, disinterested in working, a drug addict, an alcoholic, looking for a handout, looking for free money, spoiled, to blame for not having a job, not trying hard enough, a slacker, a leech, a parasite, unwilling to work, low-skilled, asking for a handout, a failure, a loser, or merely holding out for higher pay.

I am one of almost 13 million unemployed Americans who have still value and worth and are tired of being told otherwise.

I don’t enjoy having to worry about having enough money to keep our house. (Just as an aside, we didn’t “overbuy”. We bought well within our means and, with jobs, had no problem keeping current on the mortgage.) I don’t enjoy wondering if we’ll have enough money to heat our house this winter. (Aside number 2: oil was $1.05/gallon when we bought the house. Right now it is hovering around $4.00.) I’m tired of worrying that we won’t be able to keep the lights, water and phone turned on. Or if we’ll be able to stay connected to the Internet.

You may not think that being able to tap into the online world is essential, not having had to apply for jobs for quite some time, but most employers will only accept applications online, so having Internet access is a pretty big deal.

Speaking of job applications, please don’t think I’ve been resting easy and not applying for jobs. I’ve sent applications and resumes to literally hundreds of places, only to hear “no thanks” from about a dozen and nothing at all from the rest. Let me know if you would like to see the list. I am happy to share it.

I don’t enjoy being 50-plus years old, lying awake at night worried about my husband or me being able to pay for prescription medications this month. Or being terrified of getting seriously ill and, with no health insurance, incurring a huge medical bill that we’ll never be able to pay.

I don’t enjoy knowing that we’ll never be able to retire – ever – because all that retirement money we worked so hard to save over all those years is now gone.

The past 4 years have left me with a true crisis of faith. I have lost faith in myself and my abilities. I have almost entirely lost faith in this nation and in its leaders, who seem to only want to help themselves and those who really don’t need help – that “one percent.” I hope you noted that I just said, “almost.” Almost entirely lost faith in this nation.” I still believe that there is hope but, for me, hope is fading.

So I ask you both: why should I bother to vote for people who have lost touch with America, its people and the ideals which were set forth and carried forward for over two hundred years? In short: what are you going to do for me? Because right now, I don’t see any reason to get out of bed and vote on November 6.

Give me a reason. And give me back hope in myself, my future, and the future of this nation.

Sincerely,

Bette Blackwell

Bridgeport, CT

BetteBlackwell@yahoo.com

No, that’s not quite right!

 

If, as the sayings go, “a picture is worth a thousand words” and “every picture tells a story”, what does it say about a person when the picture in question has actually become a part of their human anatomy?

Tattoos and those who have them used to be considered to be from thewrong side of life”: prisoners, gang members, bikers, sailors doing god-only-knows-what with god-knows-who as they travelled the world. “Good people” from “good families” wouldn’t be caught dead getting one.

A tattooed woman was nearly unthinkable, unless you were to visit your local freak show or, perhaps, a Polynesian island.

We all know that things have changed quite a bit now that tattooing is in its heyday. In fact, it’s become so commonplace as to be mundane. And yes, you might say that in some cases, we’ve gone more than a bit too far. Although, upon reflection (and some in-depth Googling), “a bit” may be somewhat of an understatement.

Yes, that IS an eyeball getting tattooed.

But what’s the story behind all the ink we’re seeing in today’s society? It can’t all be explained by too much booze while on Spring Break in Cancun and too many bachelor parties in Vegas. While a lot of ink can be passed off as a mere impulse buy, one that’s no different from a Snickers bar at the cash register, most body art can be explained in deeply personal terms: “I had this done when . . . “, “I got this design to honor  . . .”

There are serious reasons and crazy reasons. Sad ones and joyful ones. There are tattoos to memorialize lost loved ones and to act a reminder of good times. They celebrate birth and death and pretty much everything in between.

To those of you who are among the inked, what was your reason? Why that design, on that part of your body, and that point in your life? What were you thinking? Were you thinking at all, or acting on impulse? Was it your first and last tattoo, or just another in a long line in your, shall we say, personal collection?

I want to hear about it. I want to know your inspiration or, if you will, your INKSPIRATION. “My Inkspiration: The Tattooed Tell Their Tales” is a work in progress which will, if God is willing, allow me – as researcher/author and, at times, photographer – to tell your story.

I want to hear the where and why and when behind what is now a part of you forever. Tell me your story. Or, “stories”, if you have more than one. If there’s one thing I like more than looking at and admiring someone’s body art, it’s hearing about the genesis of its very existence.

For more information on how you can be a part of this, email me at MyInkStory@yahoo.com. And let YOUR tale be told!

The beat goes on, and the beat goes on.

Area news media reported in January that the state of Connecticut added a whopping (wait for it . . .) SIX HUNDRED jobs in December. Huzzah! Wake the kids and phone the neighbors! Fireworks and sparklers! No, wait!

Blow your floofloovers! Bang your tartoogas!
Blow your whohoopers! Bang your gardookas!
Spin your trumtookas! Slam your slooslunkas!
Beat your blumbloopas! Whack your whowonkas!

Dance with jingtinglers tied on to your heels!

And then take a breath. Several, in fact.

These are the people, remember, who told us all that the “recession was over in 2009.” I still have yet to meet anyone who believes that. The aforementioned 600 jobs, by the way, were most assuredly holiday jobs and I will bet you dollars to donuts that when the January numbers are announced, the jobless rate will be back in the shitter.

“Hey, everybody! I found the new unemployment numbers!!!!”

I know more unemployed/laid off/downsized/outsourced people than at any other time in my life. Not one of them has a sunny outlook about their near future and a downright dismal one on their long-term future. So here we sit, day in and day out, poring over job postings unless our corneas bleed, sending off applications and resumes and cover letters to companies that we will never hear from for jobs that we will never get. If you judge a nation’s financial environment by the psyches of its people, we are truly in a depression. Prozac, anyone?

Just for sheer entertainment value, here is a list of almost all of the jobs I have applied for so far, I say, “ALMOST all”, because it does not include all the jobs posted in “company confidential” and “anonymous” ads. How many of them have I heard back from? Maybe 10, and I’m being generous.

How many actual interviews? 5.

Tell me, again, how the recession is over.

Trans Digital Media, LLC

WFSB-TV Channel 3

Time-Warner NYC

Boardroom.com

Penny Press

Stratford Animal Control

Banfield- Charter Hospitals

NBC UNIVERSAL

Essex Television Group

World Wrestling Entertainment

Triple Threat

Alliance

Televerse

Meredith Media

Max Films

Bret Stern Productions

Conn. Film Center, LLC

Home Depot

CreativeWorks

Connecticut School of Broadcasting

WTIC/WTXX-TV

Movement Pictures

Wheelhouse

The U.S. Census

State of CT Judicial Branch

Petco

ORLive, Inc.

Rockstar Games

GE New York

Time Warner

American Cruise Lines

WTIC/WTXX-TV  (again)

Greenfield Consulting Group

Heart Newspapers/SCNI

Mountain Lake PBS

Plattsburgh Public Television

NBC Universal

Soho Editors

National Media Connection

Blue Chip Films

Leopard films

Cablevision

Adecco

Try It On Everything, LLC

MTV Networks

Nickelodeon

A&E networks

Hertz

Home Depot (again)

ESPN

The Walt Disney Company

ABC News Digital

Mediastorm.biz

Borders Books

Daymon Worldwide, Inc.

Stop & Shop

Purdue Pharma

Starbucks

City of Bridgeport

Tribune Company

Grey Healthcare Group

Wholesome Wave

Fox Networks

United Technologies/Hamilton Sundstrand

North/South Productions
Soho Editors (again)

Priceline.com Incorporated

Leopard Films (again)

Creative Circle

Encompass Digital Media

Televerse Media (again)

Melissa & David

Tasti D Lite

Roger Wilco Productions

NBC Universal (again)

GoodLife Productions, LLC

Petco (again)

Recovery Network of Programs

Creative Benefit Planning

Whole Foods

Connex Credit Union

NBC Universal (again)

March of Dimes Foundation

Peoples Bank

Blue Flame LLC

Penny Publications (again)

United Biosource Corporation

A&E Television Networks

Somewhere today . . .

there are parents hoping against hope and praying to God that they won’t hear that dreaded word: “cancer” from their child’s doctor tomorrow. With your help, we may see a day when that never has to happen again.

 

 

The St. Baldrick’s Foundation makes grants to research institutions to find new cures for childhood cancer, and to find treatments to ensure a better quality of life for patients and survivors. The Foundation funds research projects conducted by established pediatric cancer experts, as well as younger professionals who will be the experts of tomorrow. Funds also enable hundreds of local institutions to participate in national pediatric cancer clinical trials, offering the best available care for every child.

This is my sixth year of shaving my head for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation. At St. Baldrick’s events, volunteers get bald to raise money and stand in solidarity with kids who typically lose their hair during cancer treatments.

Since the first head-shaving event on St. Patrick’s Day in 2000, St. Baldrick’s has contributed more than 70 million dollars to pediatric cancer research and has held events around the globe. In fact, St. Baldrick’s Foundation is second only to the United States government in monies given to fund grants for pediatric cancer research, and Team Brent, of which I am a part, is the number one fund raising team in the nation.

 

If you would like to support me in my journey, here is the link.

 

Thank you so, so much for your interest and thank you all for your continued support!
Love,
Bette B
Bold, Bald Broad

“Every picture tells a story . . . “

Do you have an interesting story about your tattoo? Why you chose that design? Its meaning? What was going on with you in your life when you got it?

If you’re interested in sharing for inclusion in a possible photo essay book on tattoos, please email to MyInkStory@yahoo.com.

The scourge that is “Duckface.”

 “Duckface”, also known as “ducklips” is an asinine expression popping up on Facebook (and other) pages across the Interwebz. As defined by Urbandictionary.com, duckface is a “stupid facial expression put forth by stupid women that don’t know how to smile. The Duckface is made by moving both lips as far up and outward as possible. Commonly seen in photos of slutty women where the lighting is too high up or they’re taking photos of (themselves) in the mirror.”

It appears most popular with young, absurdly over-tanned, excessively eye-linered women (most often sporting “porn pink” frosted lipstick)

but can frequently be seen among the young, male douchebag population as well.

“Hey! Everybody look at me! I’m all gangsta an’ shit! Bitchessssssssssssss”

Duckface has even inspired a music video – probably more than one, but this one is my favorite. And I just noticed on the Youtube page that someone has devised a FB game:

FACEBOOK DUCK HUNTING: The rules are simple, every time you see a girl making a duck face in a photo, you comment, “BANG”.

Damn. I have got to get in on that.

No one quite seems to know how this blight on portraiture began and I would like to believe the person who started it would be too embarassed to admit it. I would LIKE to believe it, but I don’t.

Duckface is, to me, one of those true, honest, “What the fuck??!!” moments. Was it supposed to be sexy? I will admit that I am not in the “duckface demographic”, but I can’t imagine anyone seeing this as sexy. Cheap, sleazy and desperately whorish, sure. Sexy? Not so much. This poor girl had the misfortune to never meet a plastic surgeon who knew how to tell her, “no”, but she’s making it worse.

In fact, the more I see of duckface and the bigger, more protuberant the lips are, the more I just see a baboon’s ass. POP QUIZ TIME! Which one of the photos below is of a baboon?

Shit. It was a trick question. They are BOTH baboons.

So let’s make a promise – a resolution, if you will – to eradicate Duckface not just in our lieftime, but in the next 12 months. Let’s mke 2012 the year that we remove this scourge from the fake tanned, ballooned-lipped face of the Earth. This is not the legacy that today’s society needs to leave to its children. Remember: friends don’t let friends duckface!