Friday, December 31, 2010
Saturday, December 25, 2010
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Sunday, December 12, 2010
The Metrodome was no match for 20 inches of snow Saturday night. The Vikings game had already been postponed until Monday but after the collapse, it's unclear when that game will be played. I-90 was closed along with many other roads around the state of Minnesota. story. I have been snowed in for two days--here's a picture of my front yard.
Friday, December 10, 2010
Saturday, December 4, 2010
Saturday, November 27, 2010
KELLY CLARKSON (SEASON 1)
--She's sold more than 10 million albums in the U.S.
--Her coronation song, "A Moment Like This," went to number one for two weeks.
--She's the only "Idol" winner to score a number-one hit in Britain.
--Her first album, Thankful, debuted at number one and went on to sell 2.75 million copies.
--Her second album, Breakaway, sold more than 6 million copies and spent two years on the Billboard Top 200.
--She's won two Grammys, 12 Billboard Awards, and four American Music Awards, among many other accolades.
--She broke the Beatles' record for biggest leap on Hot 100 with "A Moment Like This," then broke her own record years later with her comeback single, "My Life Would Suck Without You."
--Eight of her singles have sold more than 1 million copies apiece.
--She was forced to do that silly movie musical From Justin To Kelly with runner-up Justin Guarini, which was a major box-office flop.
--She publicly battled with BMG honcho Clive Davis over creative control of her third album, My December, then suffered a vengeful smear campaign by her own label.
--My December only sold 800,000 copies (a disappointment compared to Breakaway's huge success).
--She canceled her tour and fired her management after the My December debacle.
--Her third album, All I Ever Wanted, has not gone platinum in the U.S. yet (it's nearing the 900K mark), despite it yielding three hit singles.
RUBEN STUDDARD (SEASON 2)
--He sold 400,000 copies of his first album, Soulful, in its debut week.
--Soulful has sold nearly 1.8 million copies to date.
--He sold almost 500,000 copies of I Need An Angel (extremely impressive numbers for a gospel album).
--He is fifth-biggest-selling "Idol"-winner ever, with about 2.4 million albums sold.
--His third album (and second secular album), The Return, sold poorly (238,000); he was subsequently dropped by J Records.
--His independently released fourth album, Love Is, only sold 50,000 copies.
--His greatest-hits album has only sold a measly 3,500 units.
--He's recently resorted to playing small venues with fellow Season 2 finalist Clay Aiken, on this year's perhaps inappropriately titled "Timeless" tour.
FANTASIA (SEASON 3)
--Her coronation song, "I Believe," went to number one and was the top single of 2004, going double-platinum; it won three Billboard Awards that year.
--Her first album, Free Yourself, earned four Grammy nominations and sold 1.8 million copies.
--Her Lifetime Network biopic, Life Is Not a Fairy Tale: The Fantasia Barrino Story, became Lifetime's second-most-viewed program of all time.
--Her 2007 single "When I See U" made history by spending an entire year on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.
--She received raves for her Broadway performance in The Color Purple.
--Her show "Fantasia For Real" is a reality TV hit; it was the highest-rated VH1 show of 2010.
--Her third album Back To Me is a strong comeback, debuting at number two this year, making it her highest-charting album yet; it has sold more than 300,000 units so far.
--Her second album, Fantasia, was a sales disappointment; despite good reviews, it barely went gold and stalled at number 19 on the album chart.
--She was sued by dad for $10 million (he claimed she defamed him in her autobiography).
--Her home nearly went into foreclosure due to financial troubles.
--Throat surgery almost put an end to her career.
--Her many missed Color Purple performances burned bridges and earned her a bad reputation in the industry.
--Her first single from Back To Me, "Even Angels," failed to chart, despite a hyped "Oprah" performance.
--Lately she's received more attention for her personal problems (a drug overdose, an illicit affair) than for her talent and music.
CARRIE UNDERWOOD (SEASON 4)
--Forbes ranks her as the number-one earner among all "Idol" alums.
--She won a Grammy for Best New Artist, and has won five Grammys total.
--She's won more than 100 trophies at the AMAs, Billboard Awards, Grammys, ACMs, CMAs, People's Choice Awards, and CMT Awards.
--All three of her albums have gone multiplatinum.
--She was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry, a huge honor for a country singer.
--She was recently recruited to sing the theme song for the new Chronicles Of Narnia movie.
--And the list goes on and on...
--Um, there's not much bad to say here; Carrie is always, consistently, the most successful and untouchable Idol. I suppose the one negative is each of her albums has sold approximately one half as much as its predecessor (Some Hearts sold 7 million, Carnival Ride sold a little over 3 million, and Play On's total tally to date is about 1.8 million). But hey, 1.8 copies still ain't too shabby.
TAYLOR HICKS (SEASON 5)
--He won during the highest-rated season of "Idol" (and was never once in the bottom three).
--He was named one of People's most eligible bachelors.
--His self-titled post-"Idol" album sold 298,000 copies in first week, debuting at number two, and sold 809,000 total...more than most people realize or give him credit for.
--Until 2009, he was still on the Forbes top 10 list of top-earning Idols, raking in $300,000 a year from his touring and theater work.
--He is the only Idol to be parodied by Weird Al Yankovic, a high honor indeed!
--To date, he is the only "Idol"-winner to be dropped by BMG after one album.
--He was the only "Idol"-winner who was not managed by 19 Entertainment.
--He was the only winner who didn't get to make a music video while with BMG.
--His independently released follow-up album The Distance has only sold 51,000 copies so far.
--He fell off Forbes' top 10 Idol earners list in 2010.
JORDIN SPARKS (SEASON 6)
--Her first album sold more than 2 million copies worldwide.
--Her single "No Air" (with Chris Brown) has had the most paid downloads by any "Idol" contestant, selling about 4 million.
--Four of her singles have sold more than 1 million copies each.
--She is still one of top 10 "Idol" earners, according to Forbes.
--She's the first and only "American Idol" contestant to have all four first singles crack the top 20 of the Billboard Hot 100.
--She's toured with big names like Britney Spears, the Jonas Brothers, and Jesse McCartney.
--She's won at the NAACP, BET, Teen Choice, AMAs, and People's Choice Awards.
--Her single "This Is My Now" was the first "Idol" coronation song not to make the top 10 chart. It peaked at number 15.
--Her second album, Battlefield, still has not gone gold, selling less than 200,000 copies to date.
DAVID COOK (SEASON 7)
--He won by a sizable margin over supposed frontrunner David Archuleta, scooping up 56 percent of the vote on finale night.
--His single "The Time Of My Life" is the best-selling coronation song in "Idol" history, with 1.3 million copies sold.
--His post-"Idol" album sold 1.3 million, including 280,000 copies in its first week, and debuted at number three.
--The first single from his album, "Light On," went platinum.
--He is the first "Idol" winner to have a large hand in his songwriting on his debut.
--He changed the game for "Idol," opening doors for other rockers and singer-songwriters.
--He was snubbed for a Best New Artist Grammy nomination, despite industry experts predicting he'd be in the running.
--He's taking way too long to record his next album; in an age of short attention spans and declining "Idol" interest, will people still care by the time he follows up David Cook next year? Let's hope so.
KRIS ALLEN (SEASON 8)
--His debut single, "Live Like We're Dying," has sold almost 1.6 million downloads, a very impressive feat indeed.
--He's on the Forbes list of top 10 Idol earners, mainly due to his many songwriting credits and widely aired Ford commercial. (Readers may be surprised to learn Kris had out-earned his supposed rival Adam Lambert as of May 2010, when the Forbes list was released.)
--He was first winner to have a debut album not premiere in the top 10 (it debuted at number 11).
--Before Lee DeWyze's Live It Up came out, Kris Allen held the record for the lowest-selling "Idol"-winner debut; it sold 80,000 in first week, and a year later it has sold 320,000, not going gold yet.
Friday, November 26, 2010
Sunday, November 21, 2010
November's full moon will be a blue moon even though it's not the second full moon in the same month. A blue moon is actually the 13th full moon of the year. According to monks from long ago; this is why 13 is an unlucky number. One season contains the extra moon which makes it the "blue moon" even though it is not blue in color. This is also where the saying, "once in a blue moon," originates. blue moon
Friday, November 19, 2010
Will the new season of Idol be entertaining or boring? From new judges to doing away with the top 24 (jumping right to the top 12); can it hold it's viewers? J. Lo and Steven Tyler along with In-House Mentor Jimmy Iovine will round out the panel of four. Randy Jackson is the only remaining original member and of course Ryan Seacrest will return as the host. one person's thoughts
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
The USS Ronald Reagan is on it's way to help stranded travelers on the Carnival Splendor cruise ship. The Ronald Reagan was on maneuvers when it was called upon to help. Ships passengers only have enough food to last through Tuesday so supplies are being airlifted to them. They will also be offered a full refund on their purchase price but some say that they will never go on a cruise again. The USS Ronald Reagan is the ship upon which my son is stationed. Imagine my surprise when I read that his ship was going to be helping. I eagerly await his return to hear how it all went. story
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Find time for yourself
Don't make a happy baby, happier!
Embrace the mess
Make time for your friends
Stop blowing yourself off
Get in the zone
Remember your dreams and goals
Bend the Rules
Mind your own business
My favorite is the third one. Read more about each here.
Friday, November 5, 2010
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Even though the Brown family is facing charges of felony bigamy, they have been signed by TLC for another 10 week schedule. The season one finale brought in 2.7 million viewers on October 17. Kody married his 4th wife on that episode. sister wives
A man in Ontario Canada has built an almost replica of a Monopoly house to represent the housing crisis. Canadian artist An Te Liu says that his life-sized Monopoly house is a metaphor, irony, and art. It is his way of drawing attention to the "games" played on Wall Street that caused the whole mortgage mess. Story
Saturday, October 23, 2010
Fans will be seeing double at the Truck race in Martinsville. The nieces of Derrike Cope will be making their NASCAR debut. The twins hope to drive well and look good doing it. story
Three years ago Lady Antebellum played an early morning gig at a gas station near Milwaukee. They claim it was their worst gig ever with only a handful of disinterested deer hunters showing up. Thursday morning they got the chance to play that gig again. This time with over 1,000 showing up and all were very interested. It was a short performance but they enjoyed it and looking back, realized that they enjoyed the first pre-fame performance as well. video
Friday, October 22, 2010
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Monday, October 18, 2010
A Monopoly made entirely of gold is on display at the Smithsonian. It was created by San Francisco jeweler Sidney Mobell. He's made other very expensive games such as Chess, Backgammon, and Dominos. The Monopoly game has only been played once and is now on it's way to the Museum of American Finance in New York City but it's creator says that it is not for sale. gold game
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Charlotte Motor Speedway had a couple of mishaps before the race even started on Saturday night (October 16). First there was a massive sinkhole on the infield and then just two hours before the race started, a stunt went terribly wrong. Luckily no one was hurt but it was scary. Spanky Spangler was driving an RV around the track with, "hold my beer, watch this" painted on the side. He was being chased by a police cruiser that was driven by his son. Explosions were set to occur at certain spots on the track but unfortunately the underside of the RV caught fire and the elder Spangler ended up nose down on a pile of junk cars. He was treated and released from the infield care center so all ends well. NASCAR stunt
Saturday, October 16, 2010
Saturday, October 9, 2010
Thursday, October 7, 2010
A sinkhole appeared in the infield at Charlotte Motor Speedway just a little over a week before the next race. The speedway assures fans that the race will go on as scheduled. None of the track itself was near the sinkhole. They are working diligently to get it fixed. story
Friday, September 24, 2010
Friday, September 17, 2010
The debut of Halo Reach had some fans waiting in line. About twenty-five showed up at the Winona store to get their pre-ordered copy including my son. What they didn't expect is to be joined by a drunk and Winona's finest. One young man decided to show up after he'd been drinking and cause problems. The video on youtube shows the drunk speaking to my son, then messing with other customers, and finally arrested and escorted out by the police. story
and youtube video.
Once upon a time Craig Grant didn't like cats but now he has 660 of them. He spends 14 hours a day taking care of them and has built them their own village. It's called "Caboodle Ranch" and is located on 30 acres of a tree farm about 100 miles from Jacksonville. see the town
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Saturday, September 4, 2010
American Idol has lost another judge. Kara DioGuardi is stepping down. Ellen DeGeneres left at the end of Season 9 along with Simon Cowell. Steven Tyler has been named as a new judge and Jennifer Lopez is still in consideration. Kara