News Round-Up: November 13, 2019

Some news items you might have missed:

InstaHunks: Dan Tai (above) offers this Hump Day inspiration, “Nothing will work unless you do, so chalk up and get it done.” I offer this photo of Dan as Hump Day inspiration. #woof

Advocate: A New Orleans judge has rejected an arrest warrant for gay ex-radio host Seth Dunlap, who is accused of fabricating an antigay tweet from his former station.

Socialite Life: Former White House press secretary Sean Spicer was finally voted off Dancing with the Stars this week. In true Trump form, the Donald deleted his tweet of support for Spicer once the Spice man got the boot.

FBI: The FBI has released its annual Hate Crime Statistics report for 2018 which shows anti-LGBTQ hate crimes increased by almost 6 percent compared to 2017.

NY Daily News: Michael Troina, a former NYC firefighter who said he experienced hazing from colleagues including taunts to “have sex with a stripper” to prove he is straight, received an $80,000 settlement from the city after filing a lawsuit.

Funny: Michael Henry’s latest ‘funny but makes you think’ video confronts gay men’s obsession with parties, drinking, and sex. Eventually, all that sex-crazed fun stops being fun, and that just leaves a lot of loneliness in the gayborhood.

“When’s the last time you tried to make any gay friends that didn’t involve parties, drinking, or sex?” Henry asks the lonely party bunny. “All you ‘sexys’ only have surface friendships because you’re stuck in this loop of connecting and validating each other through some sort of sexual activity. Wear some pants and take an improv class, nobody’s having sex there.” #wisdom

News Round-Up: October 29, 2019

My hubby, Michael Caprio, posing with just SOME of Olivia Newton-John’s gold albums

Some news items you might have missed:

Olivia Newton-John: My hubby, publicist Michael Caprio, is in Los Angeles this week with his client Olivia Newton-John, who will be auctioning off much of her memorabilia this weekend at Julien’s Auctions with proceeds going to the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness & Research Center. Above are just some of her gold and platinum records that will be available. And yes, the famous leather jacket and pants from the finale of GREASE are up on the block as well. #GotAMillion?

People: Queer Eye’s Karamo Brown, who was booted this week from Dancing with the Stars, says he’s “proud” of former White House press secretary Sean Spicer (who’s still in the hunt for the trophy) and feels like he’s connected with Spicer about LGBTQ issues.

Back To Stonewall: Self-loathing gays plan to lobby Congress AGAINST passage of The Equality Act. #smh

KIT212: If you happen to be appreciative of rugby butt, Kenneth has just the thing for you (below). More at the link.

James Tadasco (via kenneth-in-the-212)

AP Fact Check: Donald Trump told reporters that he tried to warn people about Osama bin Laden in a book he ‘wrote’ in 2000 before the terrorist directed the attack on the World Trade Center on 9/11. Trouble is the Donald barely mentioned bin Laden and there was no “warning.” #WeCanReadDonald

Journal Express: What is up with these ‘gender reveal’ events getting violent? A woman in Iowa was killed by flying debris due to an explosion that came as part of a gender reveal celebration Saturday.

Jimmy Kimmel Live: When Barack Obama went on TV to announce they killed Bin Laden, he spoke for nine and a half minutes. Trump yesterday, when he announced they killed Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, did for 48 minutes. So, for further comparison, we thought it might be fun to mash-up Trump’s speech about al-Baghdadi with Obama’s on Bin Laden.

Queer Eye’s Karamo Brown Calls Sean Spicer “Sweet” & “Nice”

 

The new cast of Dancing with the Stars has been announced, and it includes Sean Spicer (below), who became famous as Donald Trump’s first White House Press Secretary, and Queer Eye‘s Karamo Brown (above).

In a recent interview with Access Hollywood, his co-“star” Brown shared he thinks the man who repeatedly lied to the White House press corps and America “a good guy, a really sweet guy.”

Check Brown’s kind words for Spicer in the tweet below:

“Sean Spicer and I have been talking. Yeah, like, literally, I was most excited to meet him because, like the thing is that people would look at us and think that we’re polar opposites but I’m a big believer that if you can talk to someone and meet in the middle that you can learn about each other and help each other both grow. So we have been chatting all day today. Like, he’s a good guy, a really sweet guy. Yeah, yeah, exactly. Karamo from Queer Eye saying Sean Spicer is a nice guy. I know. I know.”

Now, you may recall Spicer was the guy who frequently lied about Trump’s allegations that millions of people illegally voted in the 2016 presidential election. Then there were the lies regarding the firing of former FBI director James Comey. More on my coverage of Spicer here.

But, hey, “really sweet guy.”

Some fans were not up for the Brown/Spicer love.

Brown responded on Twitter, although he later deleted the tweets. He also, according to Newsweek, began blocking people and comments on his Twitter account.

“First, I have no say who is on the cast and didn’t find out till this morning that he is on!” said Brown in the first tweet. “But I’ll tell you this… I’m excited to sit down w/ him and engage in a respectful conversations. Only way things get better is if we try to educate those who have different POV than us.”

In a second tweet, Brown said how he “can’t stand people” who post things “just to flame the fire and get a reaction. We fight harder than your ass ever has for people of color and members of the LGBTQIA community” after someone else called him out.

By the way, DWTS host Tom Bergeron also shared HIS thoughts on the new cast via Twitter as well:

Dancing With the Stars returns for its all-new season Monday, Sept. 16 at 8 p.m ET/PT on ABC.

Sean Spicer Regrets Lying About Trump Inauguration Size

Sean Spicer

In the aftermath of his surprise appearance at last night’s Emmy Awards, former White House press secretary Sean Spicer told the New York Times that he does have some regrets from his time behind the White House podium.

In an interview on Monday morning, Mr. Spicer said he now regrets one of his most infamous moments as press secretary: his decision to charge into the White House briefing room in January and criticize accurate news reports that Barack Obama’s inauguration crowd was bigger than President Donald J. Trump’s.

“Of course I do, absolutely,” Mr. Spicer said.

[snip]

As Mr. Spicer prepared to return to Washington, he was asked if he was worried about President Trump taking offense over the skit — which many viewers saw as lampooning the president’s preoccupation with the size of his inauguration crowd.

“I certainly hope not,” Mr. Spicer said after a brief pause. “This was an attempt to poke a little fun at myself and add a little bit of levity to the event.”

Spicer’s big moment came in the opening sequence as host Stephen Colbert mused aloud about how many people might be watching the Emmy Awards.

Spicer appeared onstage with a mockup of his former press briefing room podium and recited almost verbatim his now famous “inaugural crowd size” announcement. “This will be the largest audience to witness an Emmys, period — both in person and around the world,” he declared with a semi-straight face.

The Times piece also chronicles the lengths Emmy producers went to in order to keep Spicer’s appearance a secret including Spicer traveling from Washington to LA “in disguise.”

Sean Spicer’s Big Night At The Emmy Awards

At last night’s Emmy Awards, folks were flabbergasted when former White House press secretary Sean Spicer rolled out onstage via podium during the opening sequence to announce, “This will be the largest audience to witness an Emmys, period — both in person and around the world.”

At first, you saw people in the audience try to figure out, “Is that really Sean Spicer?”

And then, folks thought it was funny that the producers were able to get the gag to happen.

But right after that you kind of realized that this was the “normalization” of Sean Spicer. The guy who stood at the White House press room podium and lied to the American public over and over again.

And it didn’t feel very good.

From Aaron Blake at the Washington Post:

Former White House press secretary Sean Spicer got a turn on one of Hollywood’s glitziest stages Sunday night. And he used it to laugh about the falsehoods he told the American people in an attempt to rehabilitate his image.

I’m all for a good laugh. And I’ll add up front that there are political issues on which people have extremely strong feelings and unfortunately can’t see the other side — we all have blind spots and should be mindful of that. But inherent in Spicer’s appearance Sunday night was an acknowledgment that he sold the American people a bill of goods from the White House lectern. He essentially admitted to blatantly misrepresenting President Trump’s inauguration crowd size, and he and those assembled all had a good laugh at it.

Melissa McCarthy Picks Up Emmy Award For “Sean Spicer” Portrayal On SNL

Sean Spicer may be gone from the White House, we’ll always have Melissa McCarthy’s hysterical, over the top portrayal of the former White House press secretary on Saturday Night Live to relish.

And just to show “Spicey” is the gift that keeps giving, McCarthy must be relishing her new Emmy Award she picked up last night at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards. That statue sitting on McCarthy’s mantle was for her hosting gig on SNL including her performance as the manic, unhinged press secretary.

You’ll recall the portrayal got so much attention Trump pulled Spicey from press briefing duties and sent Sarah Huckabee Sanders in his place.

At the time of McCarthy’s appearances as “Spicey,” Sean attempted to blow off the jabs with faux good sportsmanship. But his true colors showed when he commented that SNL had “gone from being funny to just bad.”

This is McCarthy’s second Emmy win having previously won for CBS’ Mike & Molly. I’m not surprised to learn she has been nominated for all five of her hosting gigs on SNL.

The Creative Arts Emmys took place Sunday in Los Angeles.

The main Emmy broadcast will air Sunday, Sept. 17 on CBS.

But for now, let’s take a trip on the “way back machine” and enjoy McCarthy’s brilliant, no-holds barred performance below.

NYT: Spicer Turned Off Press Briefing Cameras So Trump Would Stop Criticizing Him

Sean Spicer

New York Times reporter Glenn Thrush, speaking on the newspaper’s podcast, “The Daily,” says former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer turned off the cameras during press briefings because he was tired of Donald Trump criticizing him.

Via DeathAndTaxes:

“A lot of us assume, and I think the punditocracy assumed, this was an assault on broadcast journalism,” Thrush said in the podcast. “In fact, most of it was Spicer not wanting to be on camera so Donald Trump would not yell at him.”

Trump generally thought Spicer was not tough enough at his job, and that he made a bunch of missteps, including favorably comparing Hitler to Assad, which even Trump thought was too far, Thrush said.

The host of the podcast asked Thrush to clarify: “He didn’t want the president of the United States, his boss, to see him conducting the business of being press secretary?”

“Exactly,” Thrush responded. “The principled prime mover of that decision amounted to Sean Spicer not wanting his boss watching him work. That is a fact.”

The Daily Show Presents “Sean Spicer’s Greatest Hits”

Sean Spicer during White House press briefing

Wow, that was fast.

Take a look at this compilation by The Daily Show of former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicers “greatest hits” following his resignation today.

The clips include his assertions that Trump’s inauguration had the largest number of viewers, and that Hitler never used chemical weapons.

For his part, Spicer tweeted out this after his resignation:

Sean Spicer Resigns As White House Press Secretary

Sean Spicer

White House press secretary Sean Spicer has resigned from his position in the Trump administration over the hiring of New York financier Anthony Scaramucci as communications director.

From the New York Times:

Mr. Trump offered Mr. Scaramucci the job at 10 a.m. The president requested that Mr. Spicer stay on, but Mr. Spicer told Mr. Trump that he believed the appointment was a major mistake, according to person with direct knowledge of the exchange.

Mr. Trump made the appointment over the objection of Mr. Priebus, who thought Mr. Scaramucci lacked the requisite organizational or political experience. But the president believed Mr. Scaramucci, a ferocious defender of Mr. Trump’s on cable television, was best equipped to play the same role in-house, and he offered him a role with far-reaching powers independent of Mr. Priebus’s.

Mr. Spicer flatly rejected the president’s offer of a position subordinate to Mr. Scaramucci, according to two administration officials familiar with the exchange.

The appointment of Mr. Scaramucci, a favorite of Mr. Trump’s earliest campaign supporters, was backed by the president’s daughter Ivanka, his son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, the officials said.

Also from The Daily Beast:

Spicer was not the only one opposed to Scaramucci’s hiring. His deputy, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, was as well. So, too, was chief of staff Reince Priebus and chief strategist Steve Bannon, who vocally opposed Trump’s decision, two senior Trump administration officials told The Daily Beast.

According to three senior officials with knowledge of the situation, they and other top aides worried that the Scaramucci hiring would perpetuate the notion of “amateur hour” in the West Wing. White House officials who opposed Scaramucci’s planned rise in Trump’s ranks have referred to the incoming new addition as a “joke” and as a Trump-world “hanger-on” who isn’t qualified for the job and is unprepared to handle the near-constant communications crisis dogging President Trump, senior White House aides noted.

June 23 was the last time Spicer handled an on-camera daily briefing.

CBS News’ Major Garrett reports that Spicer’s exit raises questions about the security of Priebus’ job.

News Round-Up: June 20, 2017

Lony Pizzaro via Instagram

Some news items you may have missed:

• It’s 112 degrees here in Las Vegas – I can’t imagine grilling in my backyard. So, I’ll just look at fitness model Lony Pizarro tend to his grill 😉

• Virulently anti-LGBT activist Tony Perkins does NOT appreciate the irony that Rep. Steve Scalise, who has attended white nationalist events in the past, was saved at last week’s DC shooting by a married, black lesbian.

• Barbie’s boyfriend Ken got multiple makeovers including seven skin tones, three body types and even a man-bun. I wonder if Barbie knows all the Kens are attending Pride this year…?

Ken gets a makeover

• Ryan Phillippe reflects on playing the first openly gay teenager on TV: “There had never been a gay teenager represented on television up until that point: It’s before Will & Grace, it’s before Ellen came out, it’s before any of that stuff. I remember the fan mail that we would get, my mother and I would get, from gay teenagers or from parents of gay teenagers who found a way in to relate to or talk to their child through the show. Entertainment media can do those things, it can make people think differently or see a different side of something and I do remember and appreciating that — even back then when I was only a teenager myself. But in terms of like the larger view, I didn’t have a full understanding of how important it could have been, but I’m proud to have done it, I’m proud that that’s something I can say was a part of my career.”

• Asked why White House press briefings are becoming less frequent and off-camera, Trump advisor Steve Bannon replied to The Atlantic, “Sean (Spicer) got fatter.”

• The woofy Kilted Coaches show their support for Pride Month via this “rainbow-y” (kilt-less) video: