Sole Focus

News, Views, Rantings & Ramblings by Carey Parrish

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Location: Georgia, United States

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sunday's Author

Dorien Grey is the pseudonym of a popular Chicago based author who has written over fifteen novels, thirteen of which feature his popular character Ed Hardesty. Dorien's work is widely read and the way he weaves his stories keeps readers enthralled from page one to the end. A man who makes the page his own, Dorien gives his plots all the power they need to take over the imagination. His is a gift worthy of praise.

Since today is his birthday, I thought it was only fitting to give him his due here. I've been reading him for some time now and if you're not acquainted with his work then you're missing something special. Check him out online at

It Gets Better?


I'm beginning to wonder about this slogan. It sounds great but so far I'm not seeing any action behind it. Just this past week the Supreme Court upheld the "Don't Ask/Don't Tell" policy because they're waiting to review some kind of report on the matter. Gay marriage is still in limbo in California because the Federal courts out there are afraid to abolish it. If states like Idaho and Connecticut can okay same sex marriage then I'm not interested in any half assed excuses from California. I don't care what vote anybody holds, you cannot let the majority strip anybody of his civil rights. If this were the case you'd have states still segregating African Americans.

I fully believe we're on the right track with a lot of issues in this country but change happens slowly and sometimes it is excruciating to wait for them to come about. The media doesn't help matters any at all. Right now they're too busy trying to make a meal out of the Republicans picking up a few House seats two weeks ago to focus on anything else. If you want my opinion, the real story there should be how the GOP split itself with those damn Tea Partiers. I don't even think the GOP is smart enough to appreciate the damage it has done to itself. Republicans are going the way of the dinosaur and this is the reason why. They refuse to accept that the world is changing. So their misfortune is going to be their undoing.

I guess I'm just feeling somewhat restless with the state of things in the nation right now. I supported Barack Obama and I still do. I believe his platform is a sound one. Especially where health care is concerned. Something has to be done to reign in the soaring costs of health care and something has to be done to take care of those who don't have health insurance, because it's this portion of the population that is causing hospitals to go under. People who can't pay their bills have to be treated just like anybody else but if there's no money to cover their care then it gets swallowed by the institutions who provided it. State medicaid programs don't offer enough to pay for it. There are practically no indigent funds around anymore. Yes, something has to be done and it is going to have to come from the federal level. There is no way to avoid it.

Back to the issue of GLBT rights, I see a pot simmering to a boil where this is concerned. People are tired of having their rights stepped on and they're sick of being made to feel that they're not as important as others. They are refusing to accept the status quo anymore because they don't have to accept it. The US Constitution provides rights for all Americans, not just some, and I for one am proud of anybody who stands up and says "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!" If something doesn't give soon, we're going to see a repeat of the riots and violence of the 1960's all over again. And I think it is a damn shame that people have to resort to tactics like that in order to make their point and bring about change.

The future is right in front of us and we have to move into it with an agenda of making the world a better place for us to live. We can't try to keep arcane and antiquated values from a bygone generation. We can't stand in the way of the march forward in time. It's impossible to go back and you can't stand still either. Standing still is equivalent to a living death. It's also impossible to do. Our world is spinning through space with legions of people doing their best to destroy it. It takes the brave and the courageous to bring about change but it takes the ordinary to embrace it.

So...It gets better?

Show me.

Jessica Simpson/Eric Johnson Engaged


Touchdown! Jessica Simpson and free agent NFL star Eric Johnson are getting married, a rep confirms to PEOPLE.

"Yes, we are excited to confirm that they are engaged!" says the rep.

The couple began dating in May, after being introduced by friends. Ever since, they have been spotted getting cozy across the U.S. and overseas – even celebrating her 30th birthday together in Italy.

Simpson recently told PEOPLE she and Johnson, 31, were planning to spend Thanksgiving together.

"We're all gonna be in New York," said the entertainer and fashion designer. "I'm gonna be on a [Macy's parade] float. It's not always the best way to spend a Thanksgiving, but it's a great way to celebrate. So, maybe I'll just have all families on the float."

Explaining how well their relationship was working, Simpson told PEOPLE last month, "This is just normal, thank God. He's very, very supportive. [I] couldn't ask for a better man in my life right now."

Asked if Johnson were the one, she replied: "I never go to that because I already went there, so, I'm not gonna jinx my own self. He's the one for me right now! I'm very happy, I'm in a great place and if right now could last forever, I'd take it."

As for Johnson, who's played for the San Francisco 49ers and the New Orleans Saints, the 6' 3" Needham, Mass., native has excelled at sports since he was a kid. At 13, he hit a hole in one on the golf course, and he broke 11 school records while playing wide receiver for Yale University. He's also a former academic All-American.

Spreading the Love

Also chiming in this past week, Simpson's brother-in-law, Pete Wentz, told PEOPLE about Johnson:"He's a really smart guy, and Jessica really loves him. I think that's the most important thing, seeing her happy,"

Spreading the love herself, only a few days ago Simpson expressed her delight over the engagement of her ex-husband, Nick Lachey to Vanessa Minnillo, saying, "I couldn't be more happy for Nick."

Simpson and Lachey split in 2005, after three years of marriage.

• Reporting by K.C. BAKER and LESLEY MESSER

Zsa Zsa Gabor "Resting at Home"

LOS ANGELES (AFP) – Ailing 93-year-old Hollywood socialite and actress Zsa Zsa Gabor was released from hospital Saturday, her publicist told AFP.

"Zsa Zsa Gabor has been released from Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center this morning and she's at her home in Beverly Hills right now. She had an infection in her leg and she was being treated with antibiotics," said John Blanchette.

Gabor was rushed to hospital Friday after she complained of pain in her leg and swelling, which doctors at her home diagnosed as a massive blood clot that needed treatment in hospital.

It was the latest in a series of health complications and hospital visits by Gabor in recent months.

The actress was hospitalized in July after falling and breaking her hip. She underwent hip replacement surgery but suffered more complications, including a blood clot for which she had more surgery.

During another hospital stay in August, she called in a priest to administer last rites, then left the hospital a day later insisting that she wanted to be back at home.

The Hungarian-born actress's lengthy film career includes spots in a dozen films and television series, including John Huston's 1952 "Moulin Rouge" and the 1958 film noir "Touch of Evil" by Orson Welles.

She also lent her voice to several animated films and TV series.

But the platinum blonde is especially known for her flamboyant lifestyle, legal troubles, nine marriages and a propensity to call just about everyone "darling" with her distinctive accent.

Sunday's Flashback

One of 1985's biggest hits, Nightshift was The Commodores' first release after Lionel Richie's solo flight to stardom. The reformed group scored a solid hit with this homage to Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson. It has a driving bass that just can't be ignored and the overall soulful groove of the track propelled it into the Top Ten like a bullet. Still a staple on radio, the video has been viewed on You Tube over 250,000 times. It remains one of the group's most popular hits. See you "on the nighsfit..."

British Couple Freed By Somali Pirates

From The Associated Press

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — A British couple kidnapped off their private yacht by Somali pirates more than a year ago were set free Sunday, ending one of the most drawn-out and dramatic hostage situations since the rash of piracy began off East Africa.
Paul and Rachel Chandler looked relaxed and smiled through a small ceremony held in the Somali town of Adado after their morning release. Rachel Chandler told The Associated Press by phone: "We are happy to be alive."
Pirates boarded the Chandler's 38-foot yacht during the night of Oct. 23, 2009, while sailing from the island nation of Seychelles. The couple, married for almost three decades, took early retirement about four years ago and were spending six-month spells at sea.
Despite an international flotilla of warships and aircraft, pirates continue to prowl the Indian Ocean off Somalia seemingly at will, pouncing on pleasure craft, fishing vessels and huge cargo ships.
Efforts to free the couple by the Somali diaspora, the weak Mogadishu-based government and Britain had failed until now. The couple flew from Adado to Mogadishu, and after a short stop their plane continued on to Kenya's capital.
"We are feeling happy but you know we will not be free until we arrive in Nairobi," Paul Chandler told AP.
In Mogadishu, Somali Prime Minister Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed met the couple and said the government was pleased they had been freed. He said the government had "exerted every humanly possible effort to bring you back to your loved ones."
Earlier in Adado, the couple attended a ceremony attended by several dozen people. Rachel Chandler wore a bright red dress and red scarf around her shoulders. Paul Chandler wore a mauve-colored short shirt and a green patterned sarong.
Abdi Mohamed Elmi, a Somali doctor who has regularly attended to the couple and was involved in efforts to free them, said the Chandlers will now need more specialized attention.
"They need counseling and rest to recover from the situation they have been living in for the last 13 months," Elmi said. "But now they seem OK and were happy this morning. They had showers, changed clothes and had breakfast with us smiling."
Despite the Chandlers' release, Somali pirates still hold close to 500 hostages and more than 20 vessels. The pirates typically only release hostages for multimillion dollar ransoms.
Conflicting reports from Somali officials about the Chandlers' release said either a $300,000 ransom for "expenses" was paid or that a $1 million ransom that was contributed to by the Somali diaspora was paid.

Thought For Today

“Peace is not something you wish for; it's something you do, something you are, and something you give away.” - Robert Fulghum