Category Archives: Celebrities

AIBC Poll: Would You Do No Makeup Monday?

This morning, Today Show anchors went live without their usual bevy of beauty products in the name of normalcy. Yes. They, too, have wrinkles and age spots and dark circles under their eyes. Who knew?

no makeup

Check out their bare-faced debuts here.

Empowerment or PR stunt? You decide.

nomakeup2

Either way, AIBC has to give them props. It takes a strong person to face and embrace that makeup-free reflection in the mirror each morning, much less to share it with the rest of the world. Would you bare it all (from the neck up) to your co-workers? Take our poll and let us know!

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Be Less Horrible to One Another

No… it isn’t the 2014 version of Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, but it could be.

billandted

The past 5 days have pulled me all over the country with the news of insane bills and potential laws that are, at their core, new ways for us to be horrible to each other.  The past 5 days have brought tears to my eyes, broken my heart, and given me renewed hope for the future all at the same time.  The past 5 days have caused me to reflect on my life, how I was raised, and how I have been treated. The past 5 days have been exhausting.

I grew up as an intelligent, overweight, glasses-wearing kid in the heart of the southern United States.  I was raised Southern Baptist. I was a cancer survivor – but people didn’t really remember that about me in school.  As a child I sang in church, “Let us love one another” and I believed that was how God and my parents wanted me to be.  Teachers loved me.  I loved school and the challenge of learning.   But I was teased, and there were times the teasing verged on bullying.  I cried more times than I could count because my best friend chose a new friend, because the boy I liked told everyone “not that fat girl,” because the boys that did start calling me wanted help with their homework or they wanted me to ask my friend to go out with them.  I barely even realized I was a lesbian before the teasing and disgusting jokes at my expense began all over again, and another best friend decided we weren’t going to be friends anymore.  At 19 I relived the teasing and tears of my 11 year-old self, feeling that I had no one at home to turn to.

Risk of Gay Teen Suicide by Region in 2011
Source: Huffington Post

But I got away from all that.  I moved away and I moved on.  I didn’t leave the south, but I left the confines of my close-minded environment.  And now, as an adult I am an intelligent, successful scientist who owns my own home, pays all my bills, gives to charities that I believe in, and mentors to students as they work their way through school to join my profession.  And yes, if you are wondering, I am a Christian. I consider myself lucky. I have been able to embrace who I am and live (mostly) without worrying about hiding who I am. I have worked hard to make something of myself.  But all around me, every single day I am bombarded by stories and images of hate.  Discrimination is just another form of teasing, of bullying, of making people feel isolated and hopeless.  Is this how Christians really think Jesus would act? I do not believe that it is. We all should just love and are for each other. That is what Jesus would do. But will we ever get there?

Have you heard of the Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act?  It’s being disguised as an update to the state seal, so it is sneaking through committee, but it also aims to “restore religious freedom” in Mississippi.  It basically says we are all free to exercise our religious beliefs without fearing the burden of the law.  Beat up the gay kid in class because your church said being gay is a sin?  That’s okay, you were exercising your religious beliefs!  There are so many ways to interpret that.

Did you see House Bill 2453 in Kansas?  Same story.  A bill concerned with religious freedoms in respect to marriage.  It’s aim was to protect someone from being discriminated against for their religious beliefs by allowing them to discriminate against anyone in a civil union, gay marriage or similar arragement.  A restaurant owner could put up a sign that said “No Gays Served Here” and that would be perfectly legal.  Next we will have separate water fountains and “Gays Only” bathrooms.

How about Idaho?  Same story. Different state.  Segregation and discrimination legalized under the veil of religious freedom.  It’s not the loving one another religion I sang about as a child.  It doesn’t feel freedom of any kind to me. And sadly there have been similar bills proposed in South Dakota and Arizona, I may have even missed a few.

Across the globe, the Ugandan President plans to sign a bill that would make it illegal to be gay in Uganda.  The Anti-Homosexuality Bill (AHB) is an attempt to “combat the spread of HIV/AIDS” and wage a war on the “homosexual lobby” in Uganda.  So rather than seek care when they are ill, gays and lesbians will likely retreat and hide from the possibility of being arrested.

In researching for this blog post, I came across this column – a story from someone growing up gay, searching, looking for someone like them.  This is what it feels like to be isolated, every day of your life.  This is what it feels like being teased and bullied as a kid.  But, this is what it also feels like when we make laws that allow adults to discriminate against each other, be horrible, and hide behind relegion while they do it.  Instead of embracing each other with love, when we are faced with the unknown, with differences, we “eat our own.”

This leads me to the “Turn the Gays Away” bill in Tennessee.  Also known as the “Religious Freedom Act,” and very similar to the bills in Mississippi and Kansas, this bill was actually aimed at protecting wedding-related business from lawsuits if they refused service to same-sex couples if it violated the business owners’ religious beliefs.  But on Tuesday, Tennessee Senator Mike Bell shelved his bill.  A small victory, considering the legislators who were supporting the bill all stated that they felt current laws will protect people of faith from having to participate in activities that violate their religious beliefs, but it was a victory none-the-less, right?

Then I watched this video.  It was part of the Human Rights Campaign’s Time to Thrive Conference.  I watched as a young Hollywood starlet came out as a lesbian in front of an audience and cameras and more.  If you don’t know her, meet the star of Juno and Whip it, Ellen Page:

“You’ve adopted as a core motivation the simple fact that this world would be a whole lot better if we just made an effort to be less horrible to one another.”

Ellen says it all.  She’s tired of hiding, tired of conforming to what Hollywood says she has to be, and you can tell she’s a little scared.  Her voice is shaking.  Personally, I think she’s probably exhausted, and I think she hits the nail on the head.  She had me crying.  Why can’t we all just be kind to each other?  Why can’t we all practice our religion freely and love one another?  If we approach everyone and every situation with love and kindness, does it really matter who we choose to marry?

Choose love.
AIBC team member zenkitty

#LoveConquersHate
#BeExcellentToOneAnother
#AllYouNeedisLove

Vote: Who is the Cattiest Character on Downton Abbey?

After a long, long week of waiting, it’s finally Downton Day! So we want to know — who is the cattiest character at Downton? The competition is stiff, but can you pick just one?

The cast of Downton Abbey (as if they need an introduction)

The cast of Downton Abbey (as if they need an introduction)

Who’s Faking?

AIBC would like to apologize to our readers. After the Super Bowl halftime show, we had a bit of an afterglow (if you know what we mean) when we posted our response on FB. It looked something like this:

football music

But we were reeling over the Red Hot Chili Peppers, too. How was it possible that these guys, whom many of us have drooled over since we were tweens, could still possibly be this hot and musically satisfying as grandpas?

Red-Hot-Chili-Peppers-at-Super-Bowl-608x436

Thanks to Flea, now we know. The band was Milli Vanilli-ing it…or Ashley Simpson-ing it if you’re not a child of the 80s. Anthony Kiedis was really singing. His band mates just weren’t actually plugged into the amps. They were really jamming out up there, but what we heard was pre-recorded.

Here’s the Time write-up on the debacle.

RHCP’s defense? The NFL made them do it just in case something went wrong with the sound.

Our response? We feel like the guy that finds out she was faking it all along. How could they? It was a fun ride though. And we didn’t even know it wasn’t real in the midst of the swoon.

A part of us is just astounded that these guys could pull off a fake so well. Maybe they learned that from some of those groupies over the years or from watching the first half of that football game.

Anyways…Is it forgivable? Time will tell. We bet RHCP still has some ‘splainin’ to do to their fans out there. Don’t forget the flowers and chocolates to go with that apology.

Here at AIBC, it could take us some time to accept. Be patient. It could happen.

But in the meantime, we will be sure to remember that NFL excuse the next time were caught faking. It seems really legit. Don’t you think?

Fear and Self-Loathing in Hollywood

It was not that long ago that AIBC commented on the prevalence of internet fat-shaming of Hollywood stars and their response to the negative remarks. Now it looks like we need to call out those stars for a minute.

This week, Gwen Stefani has taken a lot of heat for the pic she tweeted of herself getting an autograph from Sting in 1983 thanks to her own comments about her “chunky” figure in the frame.

. steffani pic

Here’s the full Yahoo Shine article on the aftermath and other celebs who’ve dissed themselves online. The problem? Only an anorexic person would call the girl in that photo fat. Average? Yeah. Chunky? Not so much. Pleated khakis aren’t flattering to anyone.

While it is endearing to realize that even seemingly perfect people can empathize with body image issues, Stefani’s public display of self-depreciation has us wondering what kind of message this sends to young ladies just coming into their own about their bodies.

Hint, hint: Barbie is a myth. You’re beautiful as is.

Hey, Ladies! Don’t Be a Super Bowl Killjoy

Admit it, girls: no one of us is perfect. Don’t worry. The guys aren’t listening, and we’ll never admit you said it later in the interest of blogger/reader confidentiality. This morning we posted a timely tidbit you may have passed on to your significant other about being a gent on gameday. In the interest of fairness, AIBC now offers you the female version of said list.

Yes. This is completely necessary. If you plan to sit in on any Super Bowl festivities when the horn blows tomorrow, be sure to read this first.

1.) Don’t be that girl.

football widow

This is the most important game of the year. The spread is perfect. The friends are gathered. This isn’t the time to suddenly get the urge to talk relationship b.s. (or pretty much anything that doesn’t relate to the game, commercials, halftime show or party). Save it until after the game if you’re feeling insecure about him paying more attention to the TV or his pals today. Football season is over tomorrow anyway. Save the drama for mañana .

2.) Don’t assume. Not every other female at the party is there to talk about daycare and eat cheese dip. Some ladies really do like football without any male influence whatsoever.

football girls

This rule also applies vice versa if you are the football chick in the crowd. If it’s clear the female you sit on the couch next to is more interested in whether Flea will be wearing only a sock at halftime, don’t bother mentioning that wide receiver’s numbers for the year. Just offer her a frosty beverage and smile.

3.) This is not your gym or a Weight Watchers meeting. Unless someone specifically asks you how many calories are in that cheeseburger or is wagering on the number of sit-ups it would take to burn off those chips, keep it to yourself. Not everyone in the room made a New Year’s resolution to go Vegan or lose twenty pounds by swimsuit season, and some of them would probably like to enjoy the party without over-analyzing the deliciousness.

football food

Lighten up! Just pop that pizza roll in your mouth already and indulge for a minute. You can hit the treadmill double time tomorrow or eat half as much gluten. Whatever you need to do. Just can’t let loose? Suck on that celery stick and smile proudly for keeping your willpower/higher standards without guilting everyone else. Have a pat on the back. Go, you!

4.) Stupidity is not cute.

football bieber

Ignorance of the game of football is not a crime, but using it as a reason to bat your eyelashes at someone is just stupid. Learn the difference. If you honestly don’t know much about the game, ask questions around the plays or when a willing tutor is near the food table. Save big questions for after the game, or get an overview from some knowledgeable fan before it starts. Don’t sell yourself short by playing the girl who just doesn’t get it so some person will pay attention. If that’s your only game, you need a new playbook.

5.) Treat his friends as you would treat your own. This may sound like “Good Hostess 101” stuff, but it’s a common discourtesy. Just because his buds sometimes vaguely resemble animals doesn’t mean you should treat them like dogs. Sure. They are mostly scruffier, messier and less hospitable guests than your peeps; but they’re his, and he’s yours. It’s a package deal, sweetheart. Feed them. Football them. Find a way to love them yourself. Their wolf pack mentality may just rub off on you if you actually join them. You might just find you like being the Alpha female.

football Wolf-Pack-Only

If you stick to these rules, you’re sure to have a catty-free Super Bowl Sunday this year. Game on, and may the best team win!

Melanie

For the Boys: How to Avoid a Super Bowl Smackdown

It’s that time again, people! The game is on, and so is the pressure to ensure no penalties or injuries to the home team while your friends watch from the sidelines and eat all the hot wings. Did last year’s half-time showdown with the wife or girlfriend over you getting pizza on the couch follow you around the office the rest of the year? If you want to avoid the man-shaming of half a football game missed due to a severe tongue-lashing in front of a crowd, pay attention. These five tips just might save your life this weekend.

1.) Say it with me: “Wow, baby! This is the best party food EVER!” We don’t care if the beer is flat and the pizza cost $1 from the grocery store freezer, scarf it down like it’s tailgate heaven and say thank you.  Double that lip service if the brownies you’re eating are cut out in the shape of footballs.

football fabulous

If they’re smart, you shouldn’t have a hard time convincing your buddies to do the same. She’s probably resisting the urge to poison the whole lot of you for what you’re doing to the house right now.

2.) Don’t you DARE patronize her football IQ.

football refs                       

This is definitely a first time, no warnings needed 15-yard personal foul. And that’s when there’s no Midol involved. If she asks why they call the Seahawks fans the 12th man or why they called unnecessary roughness, try to inform without making her feel like a complete idiot. She’s trying to learn more about what you’re interested in, man. Recognize!

3.) Get your paci or suck it up.                                                                This may be hard to believe, but it really is just a game. There are no lives staked on the outcome of the Super Bowl this weekend (we hope), and there is nothing worse than a big baby on the sidelines.

football cry baby 2

If your favorite quarterback knew how worked up you were getting about that dropped pass, he’d probably knock you the fanboy out. So your team is down by two touchdowns and your fantasy football league team is suffering…that’s no excuse for making everyone else in the room want to duct tape your mouth or throw you out in the rain. Cheer for your team. Win or lose. They’re doing their best. Why don’t you do yours to keep a stiff upper lip?

4.) Don’t be a d-bag.                                                                                       We realize there’s a game clouding your judgement right now, but try to think about the other people in the room.

football broncos-fans-seahawks-fans

The friends and/or family cheering around you came to enjoy the game and your company. If you take the know-it all ESPN announcer or über fan role too far, that buddy you keep ribbing a little too hard about his team or the uncle you’ve made sure knows he has no clue about football stats may flip you off when you invite them back next year.

5.) Stick a sock in it.

shutup

We sat through the first half and left you alone, now give us the halftime show. The talking heads will give us a report in a sec. Can’t we just hear the Grammy Award winners set to entertain us right now? We don’t need you to recap every detail of the last four minutes of play. We were sitting right here watching, remember? Pipe down and let Bruno and the Chili Peppers do their thing.

football music

By the way, boys…while you’re here, be sure to take our poll on why you do Super Bowl Sunday at  https://amibeingcatty.wordpress.com/2014/01/31/aibcs-super-bowl-poll/. You did get the memo that you’re hosting the girls night out chick flick festival at your house next weekend, right?

Have fun!

Melanie