SOCIAL MEDIA INFLUENCER

That is the preferred professional title to those that create online web logs (“blogs”) that are written by and for domestic mothers. This finding was based upon a report backed by Type-A Parent (http://typeaparent.com/) a website dedicated to those that write, or blog, about parenting and related issues.

Since the early days of the internet, those that created online only columns or essays wrote about various topics, ranging from pop culture to politics to social issues to anything and everything else. One of the subjects that’s been written about is about parenting, and woman (mostly) have been these writers, giving their thoughts, opinions, advice, and just about anything and everything else when it comes to be a parent, or a mother figure.

In today’s terms, there have been a number of these type of bloggers that have made small careers out of their writings, even creating an income for these influencers. As noted in a report called Parent Bloggers Mean Business by Kelby Carr of Type-A Parent, some 70% of these bloggers make some income through their writings, mostly through advertising. However, most of these bloggers that do receive something can’t make much of a living off of it. (45% of those stated within the report say they make $250 or less each month while 15% earn between $251 and $500.) Of course, most of these bloggers never had any intention of writing as a full time job, mostly starting their writing life as a hobby, or to be more precise, “because they can”! However, since these bloggers (again, mostly female) either have full time jobs or have access to some kind of income through a spouse/partner or some other outside source, money isn’t the issue here, although a little scratch coming in every so often never hurts!

Although writing essays on line has been around since the beginning of the internet that most user know and love as well as the term “blog” first coined c.1997, most of these parent bloggers have been blogging away for three years of less, while a few have been doing so for six years or longer as stated within the report.

But the notion of this essay’s title reflects the fact that these writers of parenting issues desire to be labeled as something respectful, such as writer, freelancer, social media consultant, or even blogger. But the term “Mommy Blogger” is the least liked moniker. In fact, this term is hated with a passion. Even those the writers are mothers, they claim that they aren’t referred to as “mommy” by their own brood. Then again, these mothers live in a post modern society where just about all of them are wired to the max. They live and swear by their smart phones, doing just about anything and everything with them–outside of sending and receiving phone calls! They carry electronic devices around wherever they go from pods, pads, and laptops, and social media for them is the bomb! They text, tweet, pin, like, friend, unfriend, and snap away at whatever is at reach. And their blogging influences them to create new content for the cyberworld to see, solicited or otherwise!

One of the notions of this modern world of the internet is the fact that much of what exists out there is controlled by the users. Unlike radio and later television where a selected few was able to command the programming and content and its receivers (listeners and viewers) can only soak up what was given, the ‘net grew into the world’s biggest sounding board where nearly anyone can make something of themselves for the good and even not-so-good. Since the turn of the 21st century, it presented the option where Mr. and Ms. John and Jane Q. Public living in the free world can become something for themselves. A few even became famous for it and from it, thanks to many of the social media outlets there. Perhaps this influencing that these bloggers are giving to its fans make the difference on how things are picked and chosen.

One specific question was once asked by a reader to yours truly with the notion on why I don’t write about parenting. The simple reason to this quest is the fact this this writer was never a parent! Although I could have been a “dad” to somebody, I never was really given the opportunity. Is this trait in life a good notion or a negative one? it all depends on who you ask. But don’t ask me. I don’t know, either!

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NEWS AND REVIEWS

The Kentwood Players present Del Shore’s black comedy SORDID LIVES, a saga about a Texas family achieving to absorb their grieves over the recent death of their mother, as each family member must first deal with their own squalid confessions.

In the small town of Winters, Texas, not anywhere close to the urban sophistication that such places as Houston or Dallas would offer, a family clan gathers to morn the death of their mother Peggy, the grande dame of the circle so to speak. The story opens with Ty Williamson (Michale Sandridge), speaking to his unseen therapist over his family. He left his small dusty town a few years before to become an actor in New York, and to live where his being gay would be accepted. He would return to bid farewell to his grandmother, but there’s other to first contract with, such as his mother Latrelle (Alison Mattiza), who is the eldest of three long grown children consisting of siblings Lavonda (Samantha Barrios) and Earl a.k.a. “Brother Boy” (Greg Abbot), who has lived a good chunk of his life in a mental institution placed there by his late mom for being a crossing dressing homosexual. Brother Boy is undergoing treatment to become “ungay” by his therapist Dr. Eve Bolinger (Cherry Norris) whose own goals is to write a book about her work in getting Earl to become “normal” so she can do the book junket and be interviewed by Oprah. There are others within the domain, such as Peggy’s younger sister Sissy (Catherine Rahm) who is always trying to quit smoking but keeps falling off the wagon, Bitsy Mae Harling (Susan Stangl), a family friend that plays the guitar and holds a “reputation” in addition to a prison record, Wardell ‘Bubba’ Owens (Dave Parke), the barkeep of the local town bar that had a thing for Brother Boy, Noleta Nethercott (Elizabeth A. Bouton) Perry’s neighbor, along with her husband G.W. (Harold Dershimer) who had his own flings in spite of still being married, and Odell Owens (Eduardo Mora), Bubba’s brother and regular bar patron. It’s just another day in the life of a small Texas town that time forgot and so did everyone else!

This play written by Del Shore, the same playwright that created such back roads stage pieces as Daddy’s Dyin’ Who’s Got The Will?, Southern Baptist Sissies, The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife, and other works that make fun of the breed of people known as “poor white trash”, creates a piece that makes best of Texas centric stereotypes that are God fearing Christians that indulge in vices, and don’t sport well of those that are “homosexual”, as not too loosely based upon the playwright’s own life of living in an isolated town (Winters, where this play takes place) located west of Ft. Worth. In this Kentwood Players presentation, the cast of performers appearing play those stereotypes to full tilt creating such a comical performance, even if the subject matter is serious in nature! (It deals with a death, although the death doesn’t appear to be overly mournful!) Kirk Larson directs its cast into one stage work that is quirky, eclectic, slightly repugnant, and downright funny to say the least!

As to the behind the scenes work, Ben Lupejkis’ set design shows the simplicity of the settings used, from Sissy’s living quarters, the bar called “Two Wooden Legs” where one hangs out to drink and play the jukebox, the therapist’s offer where “homosexuals” become “normal”, and the funeral parlor where Peggy is laid out still donning her mink stole! The costume design by Sheridan Cole Crawford & Jon Sparks also show some of the Texas charms, in addition to the outfits worn by Brother Boy. He’ s the real diva, and it shows!

Also appearing within the cast is Eddie Ed O’Brein as Rev. Barns, a man of the cloth  who presides over Peggy’s funeral service.

SORDID LIVES is the proper title to describe all of the characters depicted in this piece: A group of humble folks that are just a little “F-ed” up in their own way. It’s been stated that everything is big in Texas, and this presentation holds the distention of being big in terns of stage effectiveness as well as laughs!

SORDID LIVES, presented by The Kentwood Players, performs at the Westchester Playhouse, 8301 Hindry Avenue (at 83rd Street), Westchester, until August 16th. Showtimes are Friday and Saturday nights at 8:00 PM, and Sunday matinees at 2:00 PM. For ticket reservations or for more information, call (310) 645-5156, or on line at http://www.KentwoodPlayers.org

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The Glendale Centre Theatre presents Ken Ludwig’s LEADING LADIES, a comical caricature play about a pair of actors who set up a scheme of getting an inheritance from a wealthy elderly lady by playing two long lost family members, only to get themselves into more trouble through a series of jocular hijinks.

Todd Andrew Ball and Derek Mehn are Jack Gable and Leo Clark, a pair of British Shakespearian actors on hard times that are on a tour of performing ‘Best of Shakespeare’ performances appearing in Moose and Elk lodges around eastern Pennsylvania. It’s the 1950’s, and Broadway for these two are far out of the picture. While aboard a train heading to the community of York, Leo spies a newspaper article stating that a local elderly lady  Florence (Elaine Rose) who comes from old money, is seeking a pair of long lost relatives who relocated to England many years before who will be part of a three million dollar inheritance. Desperate for cash since they only have a dollar to their name, Leo plans another acting job to post as the long lost relatives, getting his partner on the plot. However, the two named family members, Max and Steve, wind up as Maxine and Stephanie–two women! Before long, these pair of thespians “star” into a practice of crossing dressing, as well as meeting the rest of the family (in addition to those associated with Flo and her estate) that lead from one ludicrous antic to another!

This play by Ken Ludwig, best know for fast and furious works as Lend Me A Tenor, Moon Over Buffalo, Crazy For You, and a host of others, writes another piece that is reminiscent to a classic British farce, complete with mistaken identities, characters running in and out of doors, as well as some playful and witty dialogue with a touch of titillation added. In this GCT production, all of those of elements of fast moving charm and laughingstock are taken advantage of in heavy doses. Along with Todd Andrew Ball and Derek Mehn as Jack and Leo, the supporting characters hold off as well to the humor. Jennifer Tate is Audrey, the niece of Florence who plans to marry Duncan (James Betteridge), a man of the cloth who doesn’t necessarily practice what he preaches. Richard Large is Doc, Flo’s medical practitioner who predicted that his patient is dying, although Flo is just as sparkly as the rest of her bunch. Nicholaus Mizrahi is Butch, Doc’s son who is a bit of a doofus whose “girl’ is Meg (Kelly Hennessey), an aspiring actress who knows of the “famous” actor Jack Gable. Along with their persona, these sets of performers act in wild physical comedy in the same style of the for noted British comedies–minus the scantly clad players! (The cross dressing makes up for those that would otherwise be running around in their skivvies!) James Castle Stevens directs this show that never lets down and keeps up the pace until the standard happy ending that such comedies normally conclude with!

As to the technical side of things, Angela Wood (of Glendale Costumes) provides the outfits for the men and (wo)men, along with Tim Dietlen providing the set and lighting design as well as his keeping to executive duties as producer and artistic director of the GCT.

LEADING LADIES was never meant to be high sophisticated comedy and it’s just as well. It succeeds as a play that is fast, funny, and provides a great time for the audience members as well as for the players themselves!

     LEADING LADIES presented by and performs at the Glendale Centre Theatre. 324 North Orange Street, Glendale, until August 16th. Showtimes are Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings at 8:00 PM, with Saturday matinees at 3:00 PM, with an added Sunday matinee taking place on July 20th at 3:00 PM.   

     For reservations or information, call (818) 244-8481, or visit the web site at http://www.GlendaleCentreTheatre.com

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SUPERNATURAL: THE PLAY, a theater work that features six African American woman of different backgrounds who stand to speaking testimonials over the importance of their hair, makes an appearance at the Chromolume Theatre at the Attic theater in Los Angeles.

The stage set is a large gathering set within an auditorium type setting. This meeting is addressed for woman of color that emphases keeping their hair natural. This group was founded and lead by KeeKee (Tanya Alexander), a successful hairstylist and a budding star on YouTube. She is a child of the post modern age, showing off her expertise on hair via social media. And to spread the word, she has organized this meeting that hosts on-stage testimonials featuring six woman from different backgrounds. Each one, seated on folding chairs within the background of the stage, steps up to a mic on a stand placed on center stage, and verbalizes on how their lives reflect upon how their hair is kept and maintained. The woman speaking are just as diverse as their hair, consists of such examples as Dr. Jenkins (Press Owino) an anthropologist, Hanna (Lisette Resille) an english teacher within the public school system, Constance (Marlynne Frierson Cooley) a writer, Niecey (Quidana Bosman) a “right hand woman” to a local politician, Bertina (Virtic Emil Brown), a mature woman of Jamaican descent, and rounding out the group is Doris (Zuri Alexander) a humble preacher’s wife. As each one speaks, they express upon their own lives, where they stand in within their domain, and note that the way they don their hair makes all of the difference.

This single act production, produced, written, and directed by Candace O. Kelly, Audrey Kelly, and Gilda Rogers,blends the lives of African American woman of unique lifestyles, ages, and personas living in domestic early 21st century America, and their expressions on notions of hair. When each performer speaks, it’s reminiscent to a twelve step program where the person who has the floor (or mic in this case) “lets it all hang out” on who they are, how they are, and where they take their stance! Some elements of what is being stated show humor and color, especially the character of KeeKee as performed by Tanya Alexander. Others speak in more somber tones, especially the ones that are more seasoned with epoch. (Although they lived through the best of times as well as the worst of times, they all have moved on yet some of those scars still show off a bit!) Outside of speaking dialogue and performing as a minor role, more of the acting that takes place is when the characters stand behind a mic, making this performance suitable to the small stage setting that this theater space allows.

Although the title to this work is called SUPERNATURAL: THE PLAY, it really isn’t a play per se, but a character study of a eclectic collection of woman of color where their hair style is their personal style, and that style is theirs to keep. That is how they make their mark!

     SUPERNATURAL: THE PLAY, presented by The Supernatural Project, and performs at the Chromolume Theatre at the Attic theater, 5429 West Washington Blvd. just north of the I-10 freeway, Los Angeles, until September 28th. Showtimes are Sunday evenings at 6:00 PM. For ticket reservations, call (323) 960-7736, or via online at http://www.Plays411.com/SupernaturalPlay

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TIFFI’S FRIENDS SAY…

(As posted on her Facebook “wall”)

THE GOOD NEWS is my phone works, I can answer it …THE BAD NEWS IS the screen is out and I can’t see anything. I’m about to get a new phone so if you have texted me within the past 24 hours then P.M. me the message. I will hopefully be reconnected by 2 p.m. and will be able to receive txts.

-Monica

 

Dear stomach, you’re just bored, but not hungry. Sincerely, I’m getting fat.

-Jason

 Feeling all hipster-like eating downtown at Waffle Champion. Thanks for the recommendation

-Lyn

I told Greg to take me to a chick flick for our anniversary. He misunderstood and thought I said chimp flick. Now we are sitting and waiting for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes to start.

-Carrie

 And yes, I’m going to bed…Night people!

-Sandra

As of July 14th, Tiffi has 2,119 Facebook “friends” and counting!

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WRITE TO US!!

ACCESSIBLY LIVE OFF-LINE

is a presentation of Linear Cycle Productions

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ACCESSIBLY LIVE OFF-LINE (C) 2014 Linear Cycle Productions.

All rights reserved. The views and opinions are those of the writers, and not necessarily of the staff and management. ‘Nuff said!

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