Friday, 9 June 2017

Amanda Bynes is sober and wants to get back into acting

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Amanda Bynes is sober and wants to get back into acting
 Amanda Bynes is ready for the next act in her career.

The former child star, 31, said she's sober and eager to start acting again after a tumultuous stretch of years plagued by legal issues.

"I do miss acting and I have something surprising to tell you: I'm going to start acting again," she told journalist Diana Madison on ABC News' "Good Morning America" in what was her first interview in four years.

"I want to do TV," she continued. "Maybe a few guest spots on some shows that I'm a fan of and maybe another TV show where I'm the star of it."

Bynes, who retired from acting in 2012, was arrested that year for driving under the influence, but that charge was ultimately dropped. She was arrested again the following year for criminal possession of marijuana — an incident where she famously tossed what police determined was a bong out of her 36th floor apartment in a Manhattan sky-rise.

She was also twice placed under psychiatric hold and taken to a hospital between 2013 and 2014, with the first time coming after she allegedly sparked a fire on a neighbor's driveway. She was arrested for DUI for a second time as well in 2014.

Happy 30th birthday, Amanda Bynes! As the former child star celebrates a milestone in her life, take a look back at her career as she went from a Nickelodeon celebrity to a troubled teen. Here, Bynes hides behind a massive pair of sunglasses as she makes a rare appearance at Craigs restaurant in West Hollywood. The troubled star narrowly avoided a wardrobe malfunction in a low cut dress using her long blond locks to cover up on Nov. 30, 2015.

"I love it. I learned how to sew," Bynes said. "I make patterns and I want to start a clothing line in the future."

Bynes rose to fame in the 1990s as a star on Nickelodeon's "All That," as well as her own series "The Amanda Show."

She also turned in memorable big screen performances in "She's the Man," "Hairspray" and "What a Girl Wants" during the 2000s, but has not appeared in a film or on TV since 2010, when she starred in the movie "Easy A."
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Mike Schmidt, Jerry Remy split Jerk of the Week for slamming athletes who don’t speak English

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Mike Schmidt, Jerry Remy split Jerk of the Week for slamming athletes who don’t speak English
 Most of the time, a jerk has no idea what he or she is doing, hasn’t the foggiest idea that their actions or words are obnoxious or offensive. Or they simply do not care. This is precisely what makes people who cut you off on the road or who refuse to let you merge in front of them because they’re too busy texting such jerks.

The world of sports gave us two such people this week, who uttered highly offensive and racially insensitive comments on the air basically because they thought nothing of it. They moved their lips, words came out of their mouths, and it never dawned on them until after the fact that what they said was wrong on so many levels. Jerks.

In a radio interview Tuesday morning, Phillies broadcaster Mike Schmidt went in on outfielder Odubel Herrera with a critique so biting that he managed to insult every Spanish-speaking ballplayer on the planet. Schmidt said the Phillies can’t build around the Venezuelan-born Herrera because of the language barrier, questioned his commitment and, ironically, said the kid plays with too much emotion, a heard-before knock that’s been used in the past to insult the passion many Latin players show on the field.

“First of all, it’s a language barrier. Because of that, I think he can’t be a guy that would sort of sit in a circle with four, five American players and talk about the game,” he told WIP morning show host Angelo Cataldi. “Or try and learn about the game or discuss the inner workings of the game. Or come over to a guy and say, ‘Man, you gotta run that ball out.’ Just can’t be — because of the language barrier — that kind of a player.”

Later the same day, NESN Red Sox broadcaster Jerry Remy barked that translators for players who don’t speak English like Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka should not be allowed out to the mound for conferences with coaches and managers.

Both broadcasters issued predictable apologies not long after their bile hit the airwaves.

“It's been made known to me that my answer on a radio interview this morning to the question, 'Can the Phillies build a team around Odubel Herrera?' was disrespectful to Herrera and Latin players in general,” Schmidt said. “I'm very sorry that this misrepresentation of my answer occurred and may have offended someone. I assure everyone I had no intention of that.”

Remy basically said the same thing. Maybe they shop for apologies at the same place. Insult an entire race of people? Sure, we have something for that right over here.

“Last night during the course of the Red Sox-Yankee game I made some comments that offended a number of people in our audience,” he said. “I’d like to apologize to my colleagues at NESN, to the Boston Red Sox, but most importantly to the fans who were offended by my comments. I sincerely hope you accept my apologies. Thank you very much.”

You’ll notice there is no mention of Tanaka or foreign-born players in his apology.

What’s worse is that both broadcasters are paid to speak on the air. Throwing words and opinions around with so little care about how they land is like a cop irresponsibly playing with his gun in public. It’s like a construction worker dumping a pile of bricks on someone because they did not care enough to be a little more cautious.

Using a player’s inability to speak English against them is flat wrong. Not speaking the language fluently should never deter from a player’s worth on the field. Does speaking the language help them to hit or run or throw? No, it does not.

Part of the beauty of sports is that games are supposed to be inclusive. Baseball clubhouses have been melting pots of cultures and nationalities for years, and with that infusion of international talent, times change. More Spanish can be heard. Translators for Japanese-speaking players are necessary to bridge these gaps.

So when you insult people who speak a different language, who may need help communicating with others to do their jobs a bit more effectively, it’s low and crass. It’s ironic that Schmidt and Remy, both fluent English-speakers, understood so little about the toxic words they uttered this week.

Maybe they're the ones who really need translators.

That all makes them aloof. But more than anything, it made them jerks this week.

Brian Burke was a jerk on two fronts this week, all in the same public appearance. Burke, the combustible president of the Flames, told the Canadian Club of Calgary on Wednesday that concussions are a part of hockey. And, if you have a problem with that, you’re just not tough enough.

“It’s a full-contact sport. If you choose a full-contact sport, there is a good chance you’ll have a serious injury,” Burke said. “If you don’t want to get a concussion, you can be a swimmer.”

Ouch. Burke is a smart guy, so it was just as puzzling when he called the NHL an “industry leader in concussion identification and treatment.” The NHL is fighting a lawsuit over its handling of head injuries, and the league has been openly criticized for its protocol during games to identify concussions. An example of this is that players are monitored for head injuries following collisions with the ice, but not the boards or other hard objects.

Wonder if P.K. Subban got checked out after that jerk Sidney Crosby bashed his skull into the ice Thursday night. But, we digress.

Burke wasn’t done. He also threatened the Flames would move somewhere else if local taxpayers refuse to cough up money for a new arena. His honesty, as always, is refreshing, but his message was that of a straight-up jerk.

Finally, the Saudi Arabian soccer team, of all countries, ignored a moment of silence for victims of the most recent London terrorist attack this week.

Instead of observing the attack before a World Cup qualifier Thursday, Saudi players went about their pre-game business while Australian players stood at attention. Saudi officials said "this tradition was not in keeping with Saudi culture and they would move to their side of the field and respect our custom whilst taking their own positions on the field.”

In other words, it was not their tragedy to memorialize. The Saudi soccer federation later issued their own statement of apology.

“The players did not intend any disrespect to the memories of the victims or to cause upset to their families, friends or any individual affected by the atrocity," it said. "The Saudi Arabian Football Federation condemns all acts of terrorism and extremism and extends its sincerest condolences to the families of all the victims.”

Just like Schmidt and Remy, the Saudis meant no disrespect. It's basically a darker version of Steve Urkel's "Did I do that?"

And that, right there, is classic jerk behavior.
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Trump claims victory after Comey testimony, calls fired FBI director ‘a leaker’

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Trump claims victory after Comey testimony, calls fired FBI director ‘a leaker’
 President Trump implied in a Friday morning tweet that fired FBI Director James Comey lied during his lengthy testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee a day earlier, but said the remarks cleared his name.

The remarks were the first Trump has personally made since Thursday’s testimony, when the President was uncharacteristically quiet on Twitter.

“Despite so many false statements and lies, total and complete vindication...and WOW, Comey is a leaker!” Trump tweeted shortly after 6 a.m. Friday.

What part of Comey’s sweeping testimony vindicated the President wasn’t fully made clear.

The second part of the tweet referred to Comey’s admission that he leaked memos about his meetings with Trump through a friend.

Sending the memos to The New York Times, Comey said, was a bid to push for a special counsel in the case.

Comey’s remarks, which were released the night before, were spiced up Thursday as the fired lawman said the President lied about multiple things.

Kenji Logie (l) claps his hand as he watches former FBI director James Comey testify to the Senate Intelligence Committee at the Building on Bond restaurant in Brooklyn, New York. Logie is one of many worldwide tuned into the testimony, taking place in Washington, D.C. on June 8, 2017.

He opened his remarks by saying Trump’s reasons for firing Comey on May 9 were “lies, plain and simple” and a bid to “defame” him and the FBI.

Marc Kasowitz, the President’s lawyer, fired back at Comey Thursday, saying the President hadn’t asked him to drop an investigation into former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.

Kasowitz also said Comey lied about his meetings with Trump in which the President allegedly asked for loyalty multiple times.
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Judge overturns conviction of former Ohio model jailed for plotting to kill husband’s ex-wife

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Judge overturns conviction of former Ohio model jailed for plotting to kill husband’s ex-wife
 The ex-model jailed for plotting to throw the mother of her stepchildren into a wood chipper is walking free because of a “fatally flawed” indictment.

The prosecution of Tara Lambert, of Columbus, Ohio, shouldn’t have moved forward because of an error in the language used to charge her, the Fourth Division Court of Appeals ruled this week.

Lambert, who is serving a seven-year sentence, could be released from an Ohio correctional facility as soon as Friday, her attorney, Sam Shamansky, told the Columbus Dispatch.

An Ohio jury found Lambert guilty of plotting to kill her husband’s ex-wife, Kellie Cooke, who had custody of his teenage daughters.

Prosecutors said Lambert paid $125 to a would-be assassin — actually an undercover detective — to throw Cooke into a wood chipper.

Lambert and her since-divorced husband, Brandon, were in a custody battle with Cooke and her husband, Shawn. Lambert was previously acquitted of a charge that she wanted Shawn dead, too.

She met the detective at a KFC parking lot, prosecutors said, where she gave him the money, personal information and a photo of Cooke.

“I need her away. Gone. Just put her in a chopper, you know like one of those lumberjack chopper things,” Lambert is recorded saying in one tape, the newspaper reported.

Shamansky, who represented Lambert during the appeals process, said prosecutors didn’t specifically lay out her plot.

“Did she buy a gun, for example? The prosecutor had to spell out exactly what that underlying overt act was that contributed here,” he told the newspaper. “The state did not do that.”

Prosecutors were not immediately available for comment.

Judge Peter B. Abele also faulted her trial attorney, James Kingsley, for not spotting the error and trying to get the case dismissed.

Cooke told the Columbus Dispatch she wants Lambert’s departure from prison to be short-lived.

“She’s not innocent. She’s getting off on a technicality,” she said. “We’re not going to let this go. We’re going to fight until she’s back where she needs to be: in prison.”
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Mayor de Blasio continues defense of Brooklyn workout trips, says it keeps him 'connected to the neighborhood'

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Mayor de Blasio continues defense of Brooklyn workout trips, says it keeps him 'connected to the neighborhood'
 Don’t be fooled by the mansion he’s got — he’s still Billy from the block.

Mayor de Blasio continued his strident defense of his circuitous trips from the Upper East Side to Park Slope for his morning workouts Friday — telling WNYC that he doesn’t want to forget where he came from.

“I don't want to be someone who is seeing the world through the prism of Gracie Mansion,” de Blasio said. “I want to be someone who sees the world through the prism of the neighborhood I come from in Brooklyn, and remembers where I came from and all the people who have been part of life here.”

De Blasio, who actually comes from Cambridge, Mass., routinely visits the YMCA in Park Slope. It’s a few blocks from the rowhouse he once occupied, but 12 miles from the taxpayer manse he now inhabits. Hizzoner, who has eschewed the many gyms closer to his new home, thinks the cardio criticism is unfair.

NYC PAPERS OUT. Social media use restricted to low res file max 184 x 128 pixels and 72 dpi
“I think this has been really painted in an unfair light,” de Blasio said. “I’m going to do what I think is going to help me be effective and stay connected to the neighborhood I come from.”

“I think this has been really painted in an unfair light,” de Blasio said. “I’m going to do what I think is going to help me be effective and stay connected to the neighborhood I come from.”

The mayor’s grappled with criticism of his fitness routine for years, but recently has come under fire for being chauffeured such a long distance in a caravan of SUVs while urging other New Yorkers to change their own habits to fight climate change.

He insisted New Yorkers don’t care about his gym routine — and again said he needs to take the SUVs, rather than the subway, to the faraway gym for security and efficiency reasons.

“It is literally a 24/7 job. It is, I can’t stop for a moment thinking about this job every hour of every day of every week — as it should be, and I knew that,” de Blasio said. “My obligation is to perform on behalf of the people of New York City, to make good decisions and to get things done for them. I have to do whatever I think is going to allow me to do that.”
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The New York Public Library is offering free e-books for commuters

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The New York Public Library is offering free e-books for commuters
 It's free and you have nothing better to do - read a book, people!

The New York Public Library announced Thursday on its website that it is launching "Subway Library," a new initiative between the New York, Brooklyn and Queens Libraries, the MTA and Transit Wireless that provides straphangers with free access to hundreds of e-books "for all ages."

To access the e-books, subway riders underground will connect to the free TransitWirelessWiFi on their smartphones, or other internet-able devices, and then click on the prompt. They'll then have access to the "e-books, excerpts, and short stories - all ready to read on the train."

To celebrate Subway Library, there will be one train decked out on the inside with a design that mimics the interior of the NYPL's Rose Reading Room in the Main Branch. The train will alternate operation on the E and F lines through Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens.

Titles available right now to commuters include "Open City" by Teju Cole, "The Nest" by Cynthia d'Aprix Sweeney and Patti Smith's memoir, "Just Kids."
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Teen killed, another wounded after Facebook feud sparked shooting in Brooklyn

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Teen killed, another wounded after Facebook feud sparked shooting in Brooklyn
 An escalating Facebook beef left a teen shot dead on a Brooklyn street and his cousin wounded early Friday after an ambush by two gunmen, authorities said.

Kieth Kyser, 17, was shot in the back and leg when the killers opened fire without saying a word as he walked with Karin Samuels, 14, to buy sandwiches at a local deli.

“Oh my God!” screamed a woman on the street. “He’s dead!”

Samuels survived the 1:45 a.m. gunfire with a bullet to the leg, and Kyser’s sister escaped the premeditated attack scared but unscathed.

“We came right around the block, and they came from behind the bushes,” the 18-year-old sister told the Daily News. “They started shooting. They didn’t say nothing.

“I was right there next to (Kieth). They started shooting.”

Kyser, one of seven kids and an aspiring fashion designer, was best friends with his younger cousin, according to family members. The killing occurred just a half-block from the Kyser home.

Police said three teens approached Kyser and the others as they walked along Broadway.

One of the teens reached out as if offering a handshake — and the other two reached for their guns and started blasting, cops said.

Neighbor Debbie Lewis, 57, said she heard as many as nine rapid-fire gunshots giving way to howls of grief in the darkness.

“People were hysterical, crying,” said Lewis, a mother of two. “It sounded really horrible ... From the way it sounded, it seemed like he died right away.”

A bottle of pink Vitamin Water, its contents spilled on the pavement, marked the spot where Kieth was killed. The teen was carrying his favorite drink when the shooting began.

EMTs rushed the two bleeding teens Kings County Hospital, where Kieth died. Family members said Samuels was recovering from his wounds.

Friends told detectives Kieth was feuding with someone on Facebook before he was shot. No details on the cyberspat were immediately released.

Cops nabbed one of the suspected shooters after he tried to hide inside a Broadway bodega about a mile from the killing.

The suspect told workers in the store he had just shot two people and was looking for a place to lay low until the police left.

Cops were questioning the suspect, and charges against him were pending. The man in custody has a dozen prior arrests, including a rape case, and was wanted for a Queens stabbing last September.

“We’re trying to figure out if there’s any video or any witnesses,” said NYPD Assistant Chief Jeffrey Maddrey.

The slain teen’s 21-year-old sister remembered her younger brother as a guy who cared about other people.

“He was a good, loving person,” she said. “He cares about everybody that was around him. If you didn't have it, he gave it to you. He loved everyone around him. You could not stay mad at him. All he did was crack jokes every day.”
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