Archive of ‘Reading’ category

Cast Away!


UPDATE (Feb. 11): After some re­flec­tion and in­put from friends, I’ve changed my choice of Tina Fey to Tatiana Maslany for the role of Robyn Doolittle. As much as I love Fey, she is con­sid­er­ably older than Doolittle. And Maslany does kick ass on Orphan Black.

The film rights to Robyn Doolittle’s ex­posé of Rob Ford, Crazy Town, were snapped up re­cently, prompt­ing a guess­ing game on so­cial me­dia as to who would be cast in the adap­ta­tion. As I read the book I’m start­ing to as­sem­ble my own dream cast for the soon-to-be CBC minis­eries, Crazy Town: The Rob Ford Story, spon­sored by Iceberg Vodka, Steak Queen and cocaine.

Rob Ford: This guy - Larry Joe Campbell

Doug Ford: If we can’t get Chris Farley to play RoFo, we can at least get his brother, Kevin, to play Dougie.

Mama Ford: Elaine Stritch

Kathy Ford: Kathy Kinney (Mimi) from The Drew Carey Show

Randy Ford: Gary Busey

Renata Ford: A non-speaking, non­de­script back­ground extra

Doug Ford, Sr.: Gordon Pinsent

Sandro Lisi: Jeremy Piven

Chief Bill Blair: John Lithgow

Det. Sgt. Gary Giroux: Nick Offerman

Robyn Doolittle: Tina Fey Tatiana Maslany

Daniel Dale: Daniel Brühl

Nick Kouvalis: John Oates from Hall and Oates

Mark Towhey: Toby Jones

Frances Nunziata: Elizabeth Peña

Denzil Minnan-Wong: David Wain

Norm Kelly: Dean Stockwell

Dennis Morris (Ford’s Hotmail lawyer): Ed Asner

Mohamed Farah: Barkhad Abdi

Fabio Basso: John Travolta

Dave Price: Danny McBride

George Mammolitti: Vincent D’Onofrio

Jerry Agyemang: Morris Chestnut

John Tory: Stephen Colbert

Conrad Black: Michael Gambon

Don Cherry: Don Rickles

And Sam Elliott as The Narrator

Who would you cast?


The more things change, the more they stay the g*ddamn same


Meet Lizzie Miller.

0814-lizzie-miller_vgLizzie is a 20-year-old model who ap­pears in the cur­rent September is­sue of Glamour mag­a­zine. Lizzie has cre­ated a buz­zs­torm on the Interweb be­cause she LOOKS LIKE EVERY WOMAN YOU KNOW. A size 12 – 14, she is de­scribed in the ac­com­pa­ny­ing ar­ti­cle as “curvy”, “plus-size” and “normal”.

The mag’s web­site has been in­un­dated with read­ers’ com­ments prais­ing Glamour for (briefly) veer­ing away from the su­per­mod­els that usu­ally grace their pages. I, my­self, posted a Jezebel​.com ar­ti­cle about this rare oc­cur­ance on Facebook and Twitter and the re­ac­tion was pretty huge.

It was all great – the sun was shin­ing, the week­end is near and there is a beau­ti­ful woman with a belly in the pages of a lady mag.

I wanted to show my sup­port and buy the is­sue, break­ing my two-years-and-counting mora­to­rium on lady mags. I wanted to help boost Glamour’s rev­enue for the is­sue to re­in­force the no­tion that real women like see­ing other real women in print.

When I went to the lo­cal news­stand and picked up the is­sue, to what did my dis­be­liev­ing eyes should appear?

jessica-simpson-glamour-coverIt wasn’t Jessica Simpson on the cover, the for­mer pop/reality star who has her own weight is­sues to con­tend with and seems to be in her “pho­to­shopped skinny” phase.

It was the head­line on the right: 3 FLAT BELLY SECRETS.

I didn’t buy the mag­a­zine. I put it back on the rack and walked away, slowly shak­ing my head.

Fuck you, Glamour.


The Notorious Bettie Page, R.I.P.



Bettie Page, fifties pinup queen and sex­ual pi­o­neer, passed away yes­ter­day at the age of 85. She wasn’t as hugely pop­u­lar as Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield or other sex sym­bols of her gen­er­a­tion, but still man­aged to de­velop a huge cult-like fol­low­ing, de­spite giv­ing up the busi­ness in 1959 to de­vote her­self to God.

I’ve been a fan of Bettie since my early 20s. My ad­mi­ra­tion and de­vo­tion to her wasn’t as manic as what I felt for Marilyn in my teens. Perhaps it was be­cause I was older and could bet­ter ap­pre­ci­ate what Bettie stood for. Unlike Marilyn, Bettie rep­re­sented a strong, po­tent fe­male sex­u­al­ity — un­bri­dled, un­abashed and fun. Looking at her cheesy pinup pho­tos or bondage shots, it was clear she en­joyed her work and took great pride in it.

I never thought it was shame­ful. I felt nor­mal. It’s just that it was much bet­ter than pound­ing a type­writer eight hours a day, which gets monotonous.” — Bettie Page, Playboy in­ter­view, 1998

If Marilyn was the fragile, bruised child, Bettie was the ag­gres­sive, con­fi­dent woman. Marilyn was the woman men wanted to take care of and pro­tect. Page was the one they were slightly afraid of; she knew how to wield a rid­ing crop.

I’ve al­ways as­pired to be a Bettie, rather than a Marilyn.

Celebrity deaths tend to at­tract a new group of fol­low­ers, cu­ri­ous about this now-faded icon they are too young to re­mem­ber. I hope a lot of these new ad­mir­ers are young women who see in Bettie what they want to see in them­selves — a con­fi­dent woman, com­fort­able with her body. In this age where Barbie doll star­lets with plas­tic breasts and body dys­mor­phia are held up as stan­dards of at­trac­tive­ness (hey Hollywood — since when is a size 2 “curvy”?), Bettie (and even Marilyn, for that mat­ter) rep­re­sents a time when an hour­glass fig­ure was some­thing to be ad­mired and drooled over.

Bettie, we’ll miss you. I think God’s view just got a whole lot better.