TMI-IMHO!!

In this current day and age, the notion of how news and information travels has reached its higher peak in more ways than one. No matter what the news may be, from a tragic events or events that may involve some form of catastrophic outcome (death, destruction, damage, or some form of suffrage), news that may be important but only to those that are concerned (professional sports results, political news), news that’s timely or just for the moment (weather reports and road traffic issues), to trivial. (Celebrity gossip.)

Thanks to that communication method called the internet and its related offshoots, news of these forms has delivered such information with lighting speeds, including second by second updates and revisions. No matter if its something as life threading, or if some “famous” person found within the media spotlight just passed wind, anyone who holds such an interest will know right away, sometimes passing the same news to those that feel that should know about such.

Once upon a time, news and information was passed by either professionals, those working in the media, or those that are linked within an inner or outer circle of colleagues that hold some kind of connection or bond. The former example is something well known on a larger scale. The latter can be a form of gossip or details that are known to a smaller, perhaps selected few. It’s rather obvious about the large stuff since it has a wider concern. The smaller gossip-type details is usually spread via word of mouth. In anyone got wind to this bit of gossip and wasn’t a member to the circle it caters to, then the news is totally worthless. To present an example, let’s say if someone wasn’t employed at the main office of BigComCoInc and heard that Gloria Nutplugg was having a fling with Tony Salatan that would be leading toward a big promotion in the receiving department, that news would be considered as udder nonsense!

But the ‘net has long since replaced such forms as newspapers that print yesterday’s news today, and has cut in with radio and traditional television. Thanks to text messaging, smartphone apps, as well as the rise of the “citizen journalist” where anyone with a laptop and/or smartphone and an internet connection, can capture the news, write a news story, and submit the details to a larger audience. The delivery or spreadability of news and information has gone through the roof!

Of course, anyone can capture and report upon any “breaking” news, but now well and precise one can do such in a whole other matter! Although the art of journalism dose require some form of skills and ability, those skills may not be applied if a John or Jane Q. Public finds themselves in a middle of a breaking story. It seems that getting the element out to the masses (whoever those masses may be) is more important that getting the facts and figures alined. After all, if these people on the field fail to uplink pictures taken on the scene with a phone, somebody else with do the same with the same notion on being the first. And if they don’t act, somebody will take the spotlight!

And social media takes a major role of this news reporting that’s faster but not necessarily better! Just recently, Instagram has changed its search featured to become more of a provenance for still and moving imagery during “breaking” news events. The company’s purpose is to give the site’s populace a view into the world as it happens, ranging from ball games to what’s going on in domestic life. It will also provide more imagery of local and community events, such as parades and other regional occasions.

The giant Google also got into the game as well, introducing something called News Lab which builds upon a series of announcements to support content. And with Google comes YouTube that features YouTube Wire, which curates real-time eyewitness-type snippets of current events.

This news service still maintains a pair of Facebook accounts of two people we created a few years back as part of an investigational story we were doing on how private people’s information were. Since we ran that investigation, folks stationing their wall posts have been more careful not to revile too much information (“TMI”), so their privacy is now more secure. However, upon visiting the posts as listed by our character’s “friends”, a lot of these same people seem to limit themselves by just passing links to news stories that are a personal concern of theirs, rather then reporting upon their grandkid’s latest antics. And these same folks tend to post additional news that have a personal interest. If one follows these external links, one can get an idea of what interests and concerns they hold, from politics, religion, social issues, or how much they enjoy the kind of  pets and animals they own and maintain!

In spite of all of these details coming in from somewhere and going off to somewhere, the notion of how much news should be passed is up to the sender(s) and receiver(s). It can be too much, and it can be just not enough! The reason why this is done? It can be many explanations, but perhaps the most obvious reason for this is because they can! The good news for this “can-do” effort is the fact that anyone can perform this task. The bad news is the fact that anyone can perform this task. But that’s how it is as this writer states in my humble opinion. (“INHO”) Can you dig it?

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NEWS AND REVIEWS

     Performing at the Whitefire Theater in Sherman Oaks is John Posey’s solo show, FATHER, SON & HOLY COACH, a personal tale of small town football and how such obsession is passed from one generation to the next, keeping the flame alive with gridiron antics and all points in between.

John Posey is a man that grew up in Tupelo County, Georgia, known to be the first community that was developed by the Tennessee Valley Authority in the 1930’s. However, its real fame is football! John’s father played for the high school team. And now it’s John’s turn to make it happen with a pigskin while donning shoulder pads and cleats. But there is more than just playing football, but living it,; learning from the grates such as Knute Rockne, as well as paying respect to a local boy that did good playing the game at home, and moving to becoming a pro, playing for the Dallas Cowboys–the team known as “America’s Team”! But in the sprit of the game and its community, John presents tight antidotes and episodes of football, the people involved (mostly the real local legions), and how he attempted to become a legend of the game in his own right. He made an attempt in wrestling (the real sport of wrestling, not what’s seen on late night cable TV), although he did have his own personal glory in on the mat–not something he’s to be proud of! In all of these moments of the game, football will live onward with fathers passing on their love to their sons, while the cycle continues!

This show features the talented John Posey telling it like it is. He plays his own person, although he does occasionally morph into other characters in a rather flawless fashion. Through his storytelling and emoting with a little assistance of some audio and visual elements as provided by Nicholas Omana and David Svengalis, he brings the atmosphere of the sport and the people within the community that he hails from right to the theater audience. One can posses that feeling that is emotionalized on stage, even if one didn’t come from a small town deep in the south, let alone care for football! Michael Laskin directs this show that is comical, heartwarming, a bit sad and tragic, but most importantly, about how one can contribute in a family ritual through the aid of a forward pass, a field goal, as well as a bit of “rah-rahs” from the cheerleaders standing on the sidelines as the team wins one for the community, and for the world!

Football season is just around the corner. This show will get one into the spirit of the game, as well as recalling of the bonding of family (Fathers and sons, and perhaps mothers and daughters) as well as religion–so to speak! It’s all in the play book!

FATHER, SON & HOLY COACH, performs at the Whitefire Theater, 13500 Ventura Blvd (at Sunnyslope), Sherman Oaks, until August 30th. Showtimes are Friday nights at 8:00 PM, and Sunday afternoons at 3:00 PM. For for information and for ticket reservations, call (800), 838-3006, via online at http://HolyCoach.BrownPaperTickets.com, and at http://www.HolyCoarch.com

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Theater 40 of Beverly Hills opens their 2015-16 of stage plays with PATTERNS, a drama about one man’s place in his work, the younger new entry, and the administrative leader than holds plans for the successor that is second in line.

The setting is the corporate offices of Ramsey & Company of New York City. It’s the middle 1950’s, and at this engineering company, the men are the ones in charge, and the women employed consist of the secretarial staff. Mr. Ramsey (Richard Hoyt Miller) is the head of the company, overseeing many of its branch offices located nationwide. His second in command, VP Andy Sloane (James Schendel) has spend many years at the company performing his various duties. But over time, his health isn’t what it used to be, and he tends to take nips from his bottle of scotch he keeps stashed away in his desk. Rasmey hires a new recruit, Fred Staples (Daniel Daemon). Unlike Staples, Fred is a lot younger and a family man, married to his wife Fan (Savannah Schoeneker), a woman whose job at the moment is to set up their home upon their relocation from the Midwest. Fred finds Andy a man that he can use as a mentor, as he knows the company rather well and still functions as an asset. However, Ramsey has other plans for the two of these men, in spite of what may lie ahead for these executives, as well as for the company’s long standing progression in the corporate world.

This play by James Reach adapts Rod Serling’s original teleplay first performed on the 1950’s dramatic anthology TV series Playhouse 90. The stage version takes the same premise and adds equal dramatic elements, and thrusts these concepts with the strifes and pathos that still holds true in these times some sixty years after the fact! (Corporate business today may be more connected through technology, but lags father behind when it comes to human based resources–utilizing 1950’s based standards!) This production features a rather robust cast, each one latching on to a personality within their own right. Daniel Daemon as Fred Staples is ideal as the junior executive that resembles a person in his 30’s (family man, ‘natch) that can climb that corporate ladder with ease, carefully not stepping on anyone while on the way to the top. Savannah Schoenecker is the affirmative and faithful wife that desires the best for her husband, if not being a bit doting toward her man. Todd Andrew Ball as the boss Ramsey is heavyset in size, and knows that he is in charge: serving what’s best for him and the company he runs. The rest of the players in this production do stand within their own ground. John Schroeder and David Hunt Stafford play Mr. Smith and Mr. Gordon, two junior executives within the company. Erica Larson is featured as Ann Evans, Elain Rinehart is Margrate Lanier, Sharron Shayne is Marge Fleming, and Cathy Diane Tomlin is Martha Stevens. They all consist of the team of secretaries that answers the phones, arrange businesses appointments, and take a letter or two. Louis Schneider portrays Paul Slone, Andy’s son.

A special note goes to Theatre 40’s resident set decorator and designer Jeff G. Rack, presenting the corporate offices of Ramsey & Company as a two level complex that shows character and warmth with practical desks, wood grained walls, and green carpeting–not something one would expect to see in a rather no-nonsense place to conduct business!

Directed by Jules Aaron, PATTERNS is a piece that showcases how companies recognizes their corporate staff all in the name of the bottom line. Perhaps the working world has changed since the 1950’s, but only to a point! And the points do really matter as seen within this performance. This show is highly recommended.

  PATTERNS, presented by Theater 40, and performs in the Reuben Corova Theater located on the campus of Beverly Hills High School, 241 South Moreno Drive (off Santa Monica Blvd.) Beverly Hills, until August 23rd. Showtimes are Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights at 8:00 PM, and Sunday matinees at 2:00 PM. 

     For ticket reservations or for more information, call (310) 364-0535, or via online at http://www.Theatre40.org

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ACCESSIBLY LIVE OFF-LINE (C) 2015 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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