Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Gabby Does It Big as the U.S. Women's Gymnastics Team Takes the Gold!

I am so amped about this win by the superfantastically fabulous Gabby Douglas and her talented teammates on the U.S. Women's Gymnastics Team. In another life, I'd certainly be a gymnast! 

From the New York Times: United States Women Take Gold in Team Gymnastics All-Around Competition
"The United States women have decisively won their first women’s team gold since 1996, ultimately cruising to victory with a five-point cushion over the second-place Russians.
The team of Gabby Douglas, Kyla Ross, Jordyn Wieber, McKayla Maroney and Aly Raisman avoided major errors throughout, becoming the only the second American team to win gold in the Games."

"With gold in sight, Gabby Douglas gave the United States a strong opening in the floor with a 15.066.  The crowd, clapping along to the music, has engaged with a team besides the British for practically the first time all week."

"Americans did not flinch on the most daunting event, the balance beam. Kyla Ross led off with a 15.133, and Gabby Douglas did her one (tenth) better with a 15.233. Beam is traditionally Douglas’ weakest event, so passing through with a score that strong will be a major relief."

"The last American to perform [on the uneven bars], Gabby Douglas, was best of all, employing the soaring releases and clean catches that earned her the “Flying Squirrel” nickname."

"The American vault specialist McKayla Maroney delivered as promised, scoring a massive 16.233. Her teammates Wieber and Douglas turned in strong scores as well, identical marks of 15.933. These high scores on the most points-heavy apparatus should all but guarantee the Americans first place after the first rotation."

All photos credited to the New York Times. Be inspired by all of their Olympics photos

Keep Enjoyceinglife - just like the beautiful, talented and gold medal-winning Gabby Douglas!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Letting Loose to Hot Lunch Jam

I can't wait until my daughter is old enough to see Fame (1980). It's on Ovation right now. I heard the tsk tsk tsk beginnings of the riotous "Hot Lunch Jam" and had a straight personal party in front of my TV - dancing like tomorrow wasn't coming.

Nobody ever tells you that at some point in your life - unless you're one of those octogenarian athletes - you won't be able to move like you did in your youth. But I certainly tried. I may have to pop an Advil or two. But it was worth it.

If this song doesn't make you get up and move something, honestly, I think something is very wrong with you.

The whole Academy Award-winning soundtrack was fantastic and front and in heavy rotation when I was a kid, sandwiched between Whitney Houston's first album and Donna Summer's On The Radio on the shelf under my record player. The breakdown in "Never Alone," spoke to my church choir singing. Our entire seventh grade sang "Out Here On My Own" at our promotion ceremony - a bit somber, but memorable.

The film left an indelible imprint on my life. I'd been taking dance for at least five years before I saw it. From age 4 until my early teens, I took ballet, tap, jazz, modern, and more. I traveled with dance companies all the way to New York's Alvin Ailey studios. I even had a stint as a mime while selling ice cream at a Carvel cart during one summer at Six Flags. Imagine me. As a mime. Thank goodness there was no Facebook or YouTube back then.

More thanks to God and my parents that my childhood was filled with creative exposure - dancing, singing in the school chorus, and my mother continuously taking me to see movies like Fame, productions like the one woman show Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music, and musicals like The Wiz with Stephanie Mills and Your Arms Too Short to Box With God with Jennifer Holliday.

Fame is a classic. Even at 10 years old, I knew I was destined to live in New York City after being captivated by the scene where the performing arts school recesses to the streets and hundreds of dancers literally stop traffic devouring taxicabs with grand jetes and pirouettes to the movie's title track. And the celebratory ending "I Sing the Body Electric" was just euphoria.

The whole Fame movement was glorious. Every time I see the film or hear a song from the soundtrack, I fall in love with creativity again. Stay connected to the things that inspire you. They help in Enjoyceinglife!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Wordsmiths: Get Ready to Salivate

When I saw the post on Twitter about this image from Ragan.com, I nearly twisted my fingers up clicking the link. If this magazine idea from the wonderfully witty Grammar Girl ever materialized into the real thing, I'd curl up with it every month like a long lost lover. Please, please, please, please, oh literary gods, oh divine word beings, bring this mag to life. I'm having a prayer session. Right now. Join me, wordsmiths. For the love of correct grammar, send your prayers up!

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