What’s Hot in Films? Asian American Stories
I have the honor of knowing these talented young men involved in filmmaking each representing a different decade. Let’s hear what they have to say about the future of films and those interested in filmmaking.
Jim Picariello (40-Something)
If you listen to conversations from those on the creative side of the filmmaking industry, the future of quality film production is heading in one direction: Television. Or at least what we call TV—Netflix, Amazon, Hulu. We all have the same conversation about films today: It’s all Disney or super heroes, or horror or cars making things blow up. Where are all the romantic comedies or mysteries or feel-good dramas? They’re turning into 10-episode series on cable or online subscription services. The definition of what’s a movie and what’s a longer movie that is just split into episodes, is blurring.
I had 30 people at my harvest table with all the leaves in it. When anyone wanted to get out of their seat, they had to crawl under the table since the table extended out of the dining room into the living room with no room in the doorway! It was fun!
We went to a resort at the Matterhorn in Switzerland. The chef made a turkey shaped pate, added sparklers and paraded it around the dining room!
I booked my flight on the wrong day!!!
Sewing Baskets, Weaving Heritage
The fabled Gullah culture of the Lowcountry finds one of its most elegant expressions in sweetgrass basketry. A perfect marriage of art and utility, the tight, delicately hued coils once used for winnowing rice and toting produce from the field are now prized as the highest taste in houseware, even as collector’s items and museum pieces. The technique was originally brought from West Africa by enslaved people, then later elevated to an art form by the creativity of their descendants. Using native materials such as longleaf pine straw, bulrush, palmetto fronds and the namesake sweetgrass, Gullah folk have stitched together their baskets by firesides, under trees and in modern living rooms. They’ve sold their wares from roadside stands along the famed Coastal Highway 17 corridor, at festivals and open-air markets, and in the priciest gift shops. A medium-sized bread basket that once went for a $20 bill now easily goes for ten times that much; a large elaborate showpiece requiring weeks of work can fetch hundreds or even thousands of dollars. The world has taken notice of sweetgrass.
Inconvenient Incontinence: Getting Control of the Leak
One of the most dreaded conditions for women (and men) is incontinence. Unwanted and untimely waste leakage is a problem that ranges from being inconvenient to completely embarrassing. Though it’s usually a topic discussed jokingly in women’s circles, urinary incontinence is truly no laughing matter, and fecal incontinence is even worse. Both conditions can change a person’s lifestyle, making them not want to go out or socialize as much because of the chance of unwanted leakage. The good news is incontinence is not inevitable with age. In addition, there are many effective new treatments to consider. Read on to learn the various conditions of leakage—as they are not the same—and what you can do about it!
Living a Healthy Lifestyle
I have been advocating a healthy lifestyle in this column for years, and I hope you understand that creativity, newness and imagination are not only a part of a good health formula, but essential to the whole picture. Having the same old thoughts, the same old food boredom and the same old drudgery of a daily routine are not only sworn enemies of creativity, but also of good mental and physical health, too.
How can we avoid the unimaginative rut and use creativity to work toward being our best selves? I tend to substitute, or define the word creative in two ways: I like to use the words change and imagine.
With that in mind, let’s look at some things
that are very easy to change...
What’s Hot in Films? Asian American Stories
It took the successful release of the 2018 film Crazy Rich Asians, a global phenomenon that raked in $238 million at the box office, to reinforce the idea that diversity could also mean good business. Now the door is opening a little wider for Asian Americans and their stories. Prior, most Asian American actor roles were delegated to parts that required accents and rarely reflected their actual experiences.
Awkwafina, (born Nora Lum) one of the actresses in Crazy Rich Asians, has joined several movie franchises (Angry Birds and Jumanji) and earned rave reviews for Lulu Wang’s The Farewell since her role in the film.
I got totally drunk on a cruise excursion (rum punch). Came back to the ship and broke the card scanner machine. Our 12-year-old daughter never got over her mortification!
I just came back from Europe traveling with a small group, and for some reason I was put on stand-by status. I didn’t know if I’d get to leave Germany! I was then assigned a seat but someone else had the same seat, so I ended up in the front of the plane in the “better” section—wined and dined!
An embarrassing incident occurred when a bus driver would not allow me to get on the bus for a tourist excursion. He thought I was a “native” trying to get a ride into town. Jamaica—hmmm.
I did massage in Los Angeles for 20 years. One time I was referred to a woman in Beverly Hills who was on the phone when I arrived. She had lots of Michael Jackson pictures and gold records on her hallway walls. I said, ‘You sure do like M.J.’ She said, ‘Oh, he is my boss; he’s in Japan right now. I was on the phone with him when you came in.’ OMG!
Singing a New Song for Hilton Head Island Middle School
“Never doubt that a small group of committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has”. A wise quote by American author and cultural anthropologist, Margaret Mead. So, if it indeed takes a village to raise a child, you’d be one happy camper having a teacher like James (Jim) Waechter on your street.
Music is more than Jim’s 33-year vocation; it’s his adrenaline! With his experience playing, directing and organizing music, he understands the magic music can create. As Hilton Head Island Middle School’s (HHIMS) full-time Band Director, musical duties fall under his able tutelage. This includes all band and chorus responsibilities. Jim’s excitement has had a positive impact on student involvement. Upon Jim’s arrival in early 2017 the middle school band had only 33 participants. It also had an insufficient number of available instruments, with some too damaged to play. Thankfully this changed when Jim began working with Jerry Portman of Portman’s Music in Savannah. His music sales representative, Johnnie Kennedy, suggested the relationship, and Jim jumped on it. This successful endeavor made it possible to rent 60 instruments through the end of that first school year! Classes were re-organized, and a new attitude emerged among the student band community. Jim’s leadership re-energized the program, helping them to gain and maintain over 125 students; an expected 175 students will be playing and singing this school year!
Palliative Care helps make the most out of every day
What is Palliative Care?
Palliative Care (pronounced pal-lee-uh-tiv) is professional care that helps ill people and their family members with support to make the most out of each day. During the course of an illness, palliative care addresses the whole person, physically, by anticipating symptoms a patient may experience, as well as addressing current symptoms for maximum quality of life. Emotional and spiritual care is also provided to navigate the journey of an illness. Additionally, palliative care can help to facilitate holistic medical care and navigation through the segmented health care system. Patient choices and autonomy are the primary focus.
Living a Healthy Lifestyle
Hey, new season! Better weather, fall clothes and no more summer reruns… and I don’t mean TV! Let’s get revved up to bust out and get inspired to move toward some better goals and different daily living. General good health and that desired, sought after healthy life style might need to be taken out and dusted off, right? Let’s try some ideas that may resonate and lead to a much better Fall.
My first suggestion is one that has really worked for me. Try (nothing radical) to do something you already do, but do it in a different way. This takes many forms. It could be something as simple as trying different tops with the same pants, or doing your hair in a different way without color or a cut. This is one I picked: I have stopped coloring my hair (gray is in) and I have put up a different style with my old cut. Yes, it worked, offering just a bit of a different look. But, if you really want change, enlist your hairstylist for help.
Tribute to the Beatles
The recent film YESTERDAY reminds us, just in case we forgot, how very talented The Beatles were.
The Beatles were an English rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960. The line-up of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr led them to be regarded as the most influential band of all time. The group was integral to the evolution of pop music into an art form, and development of the counter culture of the 1960s. They often incorporated elements of classical music, older pop and unconventional recording techniques in innovative ways and experimented with numerous musical styles. As they continued to draw influences from a variety of cultural sources, their musical and lyrical sophistication grew. They came to be embodying the era's socio-cultural movements.
Dedicated to Organic Gardening for Life
If Brent Wearren were a plant, he would be bending at every bow with fruit. Affectionately known as “Farmer B” by his understudies, Wearren is one of those people who overflows with energy and knowledge that he cannot wait to share. He has dedicated the rest of his life to organic gardening and to passing on his masterful skills to the next generation.
“My mother said that even as an infant I was always grabbing plants and staring at them,” affirms the Kentucky native and third-generation cultivator who now resides in Bluffton. “I don’t always understand humans, but I understand the plant kingdom. I live, eat and breathe plants.”
Shots for Grown-Ups
A lot of us grew up in an age of miracle cures.
The antibiotics and vaccines of the mid-twentieth century
were so effective that we are fortunate we don’t even
remember how dreaded—even deadly—polio, tuberculosis
and other diseases were, which are all but unknown now.
With these blessings came a bit of complacency. For instance, have you been getting your annual flu shot? Do you know what other vaccines are recommended for your age and medical history? If you’re planning a trip abroad, do you know what immunizations you might need to stay protected?
Since August is National Immunization Awareness Month, let it serve as a reminder to get those much-needed vaccinations.
Living a Healthy Lifestyle
Old wisdom told us to age gracefully, but not anymore. I recently saw an advertisement in a magazine about a face moisturizer (OLAY) that the new thinking is not to age gracefully, but to age successfully. Doesn’t that seem way better? I like this new spin and the positive vocabulary. But, what does aging successfully mean, and what do we have to do to accomplish it?
Well, I have a few thoughts on the subject:
First, I have people of all ages around me all the time, and it is easy to pick out those who seem to be a success not just at aging, but also at simply living their lives. One of my church friends is 89 years old, and she is a hoot. Her health is not the best, but every Sunday she is dressed to the nines with matching bag and shoes—even earrings. I asked her how in the world she did that so well, and she told me she picks her activities—the ones important to her. Knowing she is unable to do everything she used to, she evaluated what she really wants to do and how she wants to spend her days with her now limited strength. Many things were cut, leaving only the activities and habits that make her happy and fulfilled. She wishes she had done it sooner, rather than wasting time and energy on things she didn’t want to do—so simple and so brilliant.
Remembering Woodstock 50 Years Later
Woodstock was a music festival held August 15-18, 1969, which attracted an audience of more than 400,000. Billed as “An American Exposition: 3 days of Peace and Music,” it was a held at Max Yasgur’s 600-acre dairy farm near White Lake in Bethel, New York—43 miles southwest of Woodstock.
Over the sometimes rainy weekend, 32 acts performed outdoors. It is widely regarded as a pivotal moment in popular music history, as well as the definitive nexus for the larger counterculture generation. Rolling Stone Magazine listed it as No. 19 of the “50 Moments that Changed the History of Rock and Roll.”
Featuring Brie Jones & Lindy Russell
At my first creative meeting as an intern at Pink Magazine, I was chosen to be the makeover candidate for the July Lash Takeover. I was super stoked about it because I have friends who always get their lashes and brows done professionally and their eyes always look amazing. Now it had officially happened, I was having mine done, too.
I normally don’t wear makeup. Everyone tells me I don’t need it, usually followed by compliments on my skin with comments like flawless and natural. I guess that’s a good thing for a college girl’s busy schedule because when I do doll up, I only wear mascara and lip balm. These two have been my go-to items for most of my life, so I accepted this opportunity to change my look hoping to go from good to fabulous.
July is the perfect month to recognize and remember the ones who fight, and have founght, for our country. Stephen Bacon (Steve) not only served our country in the military, but still serves through the outlet of education for the past 29 years.
His story starts with a small history lesson. His grandfather was a “doughboy” in World War I; his father was a World War II veteran and Korean War pilot. With such strong role models, it was only natural for Steve to follow his lineage. At age 19 he joined the Army, and his life was changed forever. From the get-go, he was given much responsibility: His very first assignment: “Babysit” 18 Nike Hercules Missiles. (Look them up and be prepared to be impressed.)
Catching the Community's Heart
Hilton Head Island is known for its beautiful beaches, great restaurants and of course, the famous red and white lighthouse in Harbour Town, but when pulling back the outer layer, Hilton Head is so much more. It’s filled with rich, rooted culture, gorgeous, pristinely preserved nature, and a strong, close-knit community. With the island only being around 12 miles long and 5 miles wide, you can imagine how having a tight community is a must for many locals.
Well, Well, Well...Physical Exams for Every Age
Seeking a little of your doctor’s attention when you are well just may prevent having to seek a lot of his/her attention in the future. Most of us understand it’s the little things that eventually band together and gang up on our health. One thing you must know without doubt: A penny of prevention is worth a pound of cure! In other words, early detection is the first line of defense when it comes to staying healthy—at every age! Be wise. Early detection doesn’t just pertain to cancer. By getting your yearly physical exam, early detection can find the beginning of little things before they become big problems. Common conditions that can be stopped, managed, or even reversed include high cholesterol, triglycerides, blood sugars and blood pressure. Other factors can memory blips or weight gain. It’s easy to not give these symptoms that may be lurking inside of you a fighting chance. The fact is: When you regularly stay in touch with your health through physical exams, you are the winner!
Exams for the Decades — What you need now:
Is It Skin Cancer?
You may worship the sun, but the relationship isn’t mutual. Living in the Deep South, especially
on the coast, urges us to spend time on boats, courts, courses, sandbars and beaches—activities none of us are willing to forfeit. The good news is you don’t have to give up relishing your sunny days! Read on as our local medical experts shine the light on how to protect your skin from cancer.
Living a Healthy Lifestyle
I love summer, and getting out in the sunshine. Don’t you love the feel of that warmth on your skin? And yes, I love to get a tan. What I don’t love is to over pay for skincare products about which I know little or nothing. I have repeatedly preached about how we need to read and understand food labels, but we also need to understand what we feed to our skin. The prices of skin lotions and creams can be totally out of sight, and labels can be deceptive. Read on for a quick overview of some things to watch out for as you shop for that special item:
Right away, I will tell you to check out definitions of product types. For example, the term natural is very different from the term naturally derived. Also, the term non-toxic has a funny sort of description, as nearly everything can be toxic if you consume enough of it. This term is practically meaningless unless you take it in the literal sense, which means it is not poison, and who would sell something poisonous anyway?
Living a Healthy Lifestyle
Keeping it fresh is a huge challenge. I don’t just mean those of us who like to lay out in the sun and drink wine, or have chips and a soda for lunch either. I mean ME! I have been writing this column for quite a while, and I always try to bring something new to the table. No pun intended—I don’t mean just food either. In fact, I subscribe to five magazines to stay current and try to keep you current, as well. Getting in a rut is all too simple because the “rut” things we do are feel good stuff. Otherwise why would we keep doing them?
This month I have several anti-rut suggestions that are cheap and easy, which happen to be my favorite two adjectives for things in life. Oh, is that a rut? I think yes. Sigh. Which leads me to my first suggestion: Stick to anti-rut tactics that suit your lifestyle. Don’t go too far out of the box, or you will never stay there. Cheap and easy suggestion number one is to do more of what you are doing, but change it up a bit. I volunteer at a thrift shop, and I have been working in the ladies clothing department. I recently asked to switch to the book section for a while and be trained on the cash register. Now I enjoy my volunteer work so much more and plan to stick to it. Cost? Zero! Satisfaction and new fun? $$$$$!
“I decided that instead of riding on the back of a Harley, I wanted to ride my own. I found a safety course, which I passed, then got my own Harley weeks later. I’ve been riding for 26 years now!”
“I did a Lucille Ball in the kitchen. I owned five restaurants and had just ordered two thousand dollars of fish from Charleston, but when I opened the refrigerator it was hot and the fish were spoiled. It was the last straw. I started throwing plates, food and pans until one of my employees found me in a pile on the floor—crying. He ran out and got my husband, who said we would close the first of the year. My goal was to never have another employee, and so I became a sculptress.”
Beach, Boats, & Bathing Suits
We were out cruising in our CraigCat and got caught in a storm. We went into a small creek for some protection. Well, we managed to corner a large shark in the creek… talk about scary! Finally it swam between the floaters on the boat. What a relief!
My sister was driving the boat when she was a teenager. We were going pretty fast into a cove at Lake Murray. Dad told her to turn, and she said she couldn’t. As we got closer to running ashore, he screamed, “Turn!” She turned around with the steering wheel in her hands and screamed, “I can’t!” Dad lunged forward to cut the engine, and we barely missed barreling onto land.