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by Jac Kern 05.10.2013
Posted In: Eats, Events, Music, Northside, Performances, Fun, Holidays at 11:35 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Weekend To Do List: 5/10-5/12

This weekend is all mothers, so grab your mom, grandma, baby-mama or other motherly-type and take her out for a good time! The next few days are packed with stuff to do, with moms or otherwise.

The 44th annual Appalachian Festival is already in full gear at Coney Island, with tons of live music, handmade artisan crafts, storytelling, food and an authentic pioneer village — for those who like to kick it super old-school. The fest runs until 9 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $1-$8. Get a full lineup of activities and performances here.

Cincinnati Rollergirls games are pretty much a guaranteed good time. Fun, fierce, badass chicks battle on the rink; $1 happy hour beers; hilarious roller derby nicknames; meet-and-greet with the girls after the game — need we go on? Roll out to the Cincinnati Gardens Saturday as the CRG face Toronto Roller Derby and The Dire Skates of Richmond, Ind., in a double-header. Saturday is Scout and Kids Night, so bring the chillun for a family-friendly event. Get tickets here and read our interview with Rollergirl Sydney “Big Ugly” Greathouse.

Whether you’re looking to welcome a furry friend to your family or you want to treat your pup to a day on the town, head downtown to the Duke Energy Convention Center for Petopolis Saturday-Sunday. This pet expo features animal adoption opportunities, pet fashion shows (hopefully straight out of Anchorman), trick competitions, demos, informational seminars, activities for the kids and tons of vendors. Plus, moms will get complimentary pet photos for Mother’s Day. Go here for more information.

Oktoberfest is months away, but local German enthusiasts can get their fill of beer, sausage and Gemütlichkeit at the Cincinnati Donauschwaben Society’s Schwabenfest Friday-Saturday. Have your fill of homemade sausages, German brews, pretzels and cream puffs, compete in the stein-holding competition and, if you’re coming from Petopolis, dogs are welcome in the biergarten.

Maybe you prefer more American-style fare. In that case, swing by Sawyer Point from 2-10 p.m. Saturday for the Cincinnati Wing Fest. This free food festival features chicken wings and side dishes ($2+) from Knocback Nat’s, Rooster’s, Montgomery Inn, Buffalo Wings and Rings and several other area restaurants.

Northside Second Saturdays is a great opportunity to buy some artwork, jewelry, baked goods, clothing or home goods for mom (or yourself — no judgment). Stop by local businesses along Hamilton, Chase and Spring Grove avenues from 6-10 p.m. Saturday for sales, extended hours, drinks and food specials. Check out a full list of participating shops, restaurants and bars here.

For more stuff to do this weekend, check out our To Do picks, full calendar and Rick Pender’s Stage Door for weekend theater offerings.

 
 
by Jac Kern 02.24.2012
 
 
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Your Weekend To Do List: 2/24-2/26

Radius, a local crowd-sourced short film shot at MidPoint Music Festival, Final Fridays and other area events, premieres Saturday at Memorial Hall. According to the press release, the movie follows "a man's investigation into a mysterious superhero and its effect on the community leads to a startling revelation." The red carpet event kicks off at 7:30 p.m., and guests are invited to stick around after the premiere for drinks, noshes, music by DJ Pillo and entertainment from Cincinnati BombShells, Young Professionals' Choral Collective and Pones Inc. Tickets are $25 at the door; go here for more information and a sneak peek.

20th Century Cincinnati is a vintage-modern (is that an oxymoron?) collector's dream. The 18th annual event brings 60 furniture and decor dealers to the Sharonville Convention Center with all kinds of goodies from the 1920s-1980s. Tickets are just $7 for the weekend, with the sale open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Find details here.

Born to Swap's February Swaptique Sunday is another fun shopping event this weekend. Clothing swaps are absolutely genius: just bring 5-20 fashion items in a bag and a potluck dish, and prepare to share both with a great group of women. You'll be able to get rid of shoes, clothes and accessories you no longer need, find a new-to-you ensemble and meet other eco-conscious, fabulous fashionistas like yourself. Tickets are $10 in advance ($15 if you don't have clothing to bring), $15 at the door ($20 without swapables) and leftover clothing will be donated to charity. Purchase tickets and find FAQs here.

Do you think there's ever been a February Final Friday as mild as this one? Surely not. Hop around the galleries, restaurants and bars in Over-the-Rhine and make the most of this odd weather!

For even more stuff to do, peep Mike Breen's weekend music forecast, Rick Pender's weekend theater suggestions and all of our recommended arts, performances and events for the week.

 
 
by Eli Johnson 01.09.2012
Posted In: Movies, Music, Reviews, TV/Celebrity at 12:53 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Music, Movies and the Not So Mundane

It was announced today that Actor/Director/Humanitarean/Total Heartthrob Jeff Spicoli Sean Penn is receiving the 2012 Joel Siegel Award at the 17th Annual Critics Choice Movie Awards on Jan. 12 for the relief work he has done in Haiti. This will be only the fifth Joel Siegel Award given by the BFCA, and dedicated “to those who understand, as Joel did, that the greatest value of celebrity is as an enhanced platform to do good works for others."

“While it was heartening to see such an outpouring of support and aid for the Haitian people in the immediate aftermath of the tragedy, the long-term commitment made by Sean and his organization is particularly notable," said BFCA president Joey Berlin.

Read More

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.22.2012
Posted In: Benefits, Culture, Dating, Drinking, Events, Fashion, Fun, Shopping, Music at 12:35 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Thursday To Do List

SmartTalk ConnectedConcversations continues its women's speaker series tonight with Kara DioGuardi. You might recognize DioGuardi from her short time as a judge on American Idol Seasons 8-9, but you've definitely heard her work as a writer and producer with some of the biggest Pop stars of the past decade. DioGuardi has been nominated for a Grammy and won countless other music awards for her work with Gwen Stefani, Christina Aguilera, Enrique Iglesias and Santana. Tonight, she'll speak on "Surviving Life, Love and American Idol" at 7:30 p.m. at the Aronoff Center. Past speakers for the series include Arianna Huffington and Tim Gunn (the only male speaker of the series' history. He's a honorary lady.) Find some last-minute tickets here.

If you miss Turntable Tuesdays at Clifton's Golden Lions Lounge, dust off your disco balls, because John O'Bryant and Hilly Kenkel are back! The duo who presented the weeknight dance party on Ludlow Avenue have relocated downtown. Now Mainstay Rock Bar will be the place to for weeknight partiers, 10 p.m.-1 a.m. on Thursdays.

Most of us haven't even thought about prom for years, but for high schoolers, the dance season is upon them. Any girl can attest to the importance of a perfect dress, but for many local young women, purchasing one is not financially possible. Kenzie's Closet takes gently worn dresses (many of us wear a prom dress just once) and make them available for disadvantaged girls in Greater Cincinnati. Principals, social workers and counselors refer these students to Kenzie's Closet, where the girls are able to browse tons of gorgeous gowns – and pick one free of charge. Tonight, Downtown's PLAY hosts a fundraiser for the organization. Just bring $10 or a formal dress, (shoes, bags and accessories are important, too!) and enjoy specialty drinks, specials, prize raffles and more from 7-10 p.m. tonight. It's an excellent opportunity to help young girls in need and make room in your closet.

Important People is a diverse collective of area writers that strives to bring together others through creative expression at organized events. Tonight's Important People Forget Their Lines is a night of staged works of poetry, theater and other performances. Forget Their Lines is an investigation of the stage as an environment for exposing human impulses like anxiety, absurdity, self-deprecation and vulnerability. Come to Museum Gallery-Gallery Museum in the Brighton Arts District from 7-9 p.m. tonight to check it out. Read more about Important People and tonight's performers here.

Martinis and manicures might sound a bit messy (I can't go without smudging wet polish while I'm sober), but not when professionals are involved! Oriental Wok in Hyde Park hosts a pampering session tonight: mini-manicure appointments, two cocktails and mani-friendly appetizers for $35. All proceeds go to the Red Cross to benefit local victims of recent tornadoes. Order some tasty dinner to go when you're done. Go here to RSVP.

If you happen to see a little more PDA than usual, it's because today is the first national make-out session. Officially headquartered on Fountain Square (though all are encouraged to participate in any public space), the event was created by an area man to replace commercial "love" holidays like Valentine's Day with real, public signs of affection. Like smooching. Events on the square have been going all day, including live music, speed dating and vendors. Acoustic music runs 'til 4 p.m., followed by DJ tunes. Another speed dating session will take place 5-6 p.m., so if you don't have a partner to lock lips with, maybe you'll find one! Luxe Nightclub hosts the after-party. At least stop by for some free condoms. More info here.

Find more arts, theater and comedy events on our To Do page, and follow our music blog for nightly shows.

 
 
by Jac Kern 08.06.2013
Posted In: TV/Celebrity, Movies, Music at 02:55 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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I Just Can't Get Enough

Jac's roundup of pop culture news and Internet findings

Think “selfies” were limited to teenagers at the mall food court, drunk girls at bars and an alarming amount of people in bathrooms? Broaden your scope to include law enforcement with Cop Selfies, which sadly also include plenty of toilet shots:


And even one with Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger.

Possibly more depressing than the fact that police make duckfaces, too? The Rich Kids of Instagram, what started as a blog highlighting the hashtagged lives of the young and privileged, are reportedly getting their own show.

Start jogging in place to raise those endorphins, because your mood is LIT’RALLY going to plummet when you hear this news: Pawnee’s Chris Traeger and Ann Perkins are leaving our lives as Rob Lowe and Rashida Jones will be exiting Parks and Rec mid-way through the upcoming sixth season. The hot-and-cold couple decided to make a baby in last season’s finale, so hopefully we’ll get to see Chris obsess over Ann and the baby’s health — I shudder to think about the gargantuan prenatal vitamin he’ll force down poor Ann Perkin’s throat — and the subsequent birth of the most attractive baby ever.

What angsty teen didn’t grow up with Daria, worshiping Ms. Morgendorffer’s monotonous snark, too-cool-for-school edge and perfect Doc Martins? Well, 10 years later, Daria’s back (NOT REALLY), in the flesh, for a Lawndale High reunion, in this faux movie trailer:


Ellen DeGeneres is hosting the Oscars! The funnylady, a 100 percent upgrade from last year’s host, Family Guy creator Seth MacFarland, confirmed the news on Twitter:


Everybody is happy about this because everybody obviously loves Ellen, except probably One Million Moms, who can all eat one million dicks for all I care. GO ELLEN.

The Doctor is in — Peter Capaldi will replace Matt Smith in Doctor Who, making him the 12th actor to portray The Doctor on the show, the longest-running sci-fi series. Capaldi is best known for his role on the British political satire The Thick of It (which inspired HBO’s Veep), which is available on Hulu. He steps in front of the camera as Doctor No. 12 this fall.

Time Warner Cable users have even more to complain about than usual as the provider has dropped CBS and Showtime “due to outrageous demands for programming.” This blackout does not result in a price cutback for customers and it especially sucks for people who just recently got into Ray Donovan.

Hey, Mumford & Sons have a new music video. Something look a little off to you?

Nah.

Comedy Central Roasts are generally reserved for washed up celebs and veteran comics, but the network is gonna try something new with the Roast of James Franco. Hosted by BFF Seth Rogen, the roast is sure to draw in an even bigger, younger audience. Yes, we all love it when Seth and James get together (see: the last decade), but the real laughs will come when the seasoned roasters sink their teeth in ole Franco.

There are two types of people who spend too much time on the Internet. People who troll comments, who need to have their toenails removed one by one, and people who do this, who should be showered in champagne.

Via BuzzFeed:

 
 
by Hannah McCartney 11.07.2013
Posted In: Music, Culture at 01:52 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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This Could Be Ohio's New State Country Song

For whatever reason, Americans deem it a necessary source of pride for us to award the states we live in all sorts of symbolic attributes, such as an official state amphibian (Ohio: spotted salamander), official state muffin (Minnesota: blueberry) or an official state "sport" (Maryland: walking?). And Oklahoma's unofficial state sport is apparently obesity — their official meal is "fried okra, squash, cornbread, barbecue pork, biscuits, sausage and gravy, grits, corn, strawberries, chicken-fried steak, black-eyed peas, and pecan pie."

Now, there's a very real possibility that sometime soon, the state of Ohio will add to its arsenal of symbols (our state drink is tomato juice?) by adopting its own state "Country" anthem: On Wednesday, Nov. 6, Ohio Rep. Nick Barborack (D-Lisbon) introduced House Bill 330 to the general assembly, which would give the state an official Country song called "Ohio" by Lisbon, Ohio musician Zach Paxson.

Here's the song that's been Ohio's official, official song since 1969:


Old-timey, for sure, but at least there's some pretty imagery thrown in there. Everybody likes moonlit streams and freedom.

And we all know "Hang on Sloopy," the '60s Pop Rock ditty that was actually wasn't designated our state Rock song until 1985, when the House passed a resolution with a bunch of references to the song, including phrases like: 

WHEREAS, "Hang On Sloopy" is of particular relevance to members of the Baby Boom Generation, who were once dismissed as a bunch of long-haired, crazy kids, but who now are old enough and vote in sufficient numbers to be taken quite seriously; and

WHEREAS, Adoption of this resolution will not take too long, cost the state anything, or affect the quality of life in this state to any appreciable degree, and if we in the legislature just go ahead and pass the darn thing, we can get on with more important stuff.

The '80s were a weird time for a lot of things, so this makes a lot of sense. The introduction of Paxson's song, however, feels a little out of the blue.

Paxson's video, and the lyrics to the song, from Paxson's website (SIC to the errors):


Austin Texas was a great place
but I couldn’t wait to get home with a big smile on my face
and see those green farms and factories
as I made my way through my favorite city’s
Chorus
So give me a cold one at the end of the day
and a “w” for the scarlet and gray
this still is the greatest place that I’ve ever known
OHIO, OHIO
Every morning I pass them
in their work boots and their business suits but we all come from the same roots
and we’re the keeper of great names
cause we got the rock ‘n’ roll and the football hall of fame
Chorus
So give me a cold one at the end of the day
and a “w” for the scarlet and gray
this still is the greatest place that I’ve ever known
OHIO, OHIO

Chorus
So give me a cold one at the end of the day
and a “w” for the scarlet and gray
this still is the greatest place that I’ve ever known
OHIO, OHIO, we’re the pulse of America here in the heart of it all
OHIO

What do you think of it? I only made it through the first 30 secondsI grew up in a rural town and any varietal of  Country music makes me hurt inside. Plus, I found the video, which is a kind of schizophrenic mix of a bunch of really blurry photos accompanied by WordArt lyrics, hard to watch.

Clearly, I'm biased, and I don't really get why there are several politicians taking the time to lobby for this to join "Hang on Sloopy" and "Beautiful Ohio." The bill is just waiting to be signed to a committee, so it will be awhile before a decision is made. But it's worth thinking about. Does it deserve to join the ranks of Ohio's tomato juices and bullfrogs? Or are state symbols just generally not supposed to make any sense?

 
 
by Jac Kern 05.15.2012
 
 
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Your Tuesday To Do List

Ricky, Julian and Bubbles, better known as the Trailer Park Boys, come to Madison Theater tonight. The Canadian mockumentary-style comedy series makes a fun transition to stage with the “Community Service Variety Show.” If last year’s live show was any indication, expect more skits, audience participation and white trash goodness than you can throw a rum and Coke at (and you know Julian will have plenty of those). The show is sold out, so try your luck with the fine scalpers of Covington!

This American Life went live last Thursday, broadcasting the show in theaters across the U.S. and Australia. The show featured its standard true storytelling format, but with ample visual components. In addition to anecdotes from David Sedaris, Tig Notaro and others, there were also dance performances, an NPR-inspired short film from Mike Birbiglia and an interactive performance by OK GO. If this sounds amazing (which it was) and you missed out, you're in luck! The broadcast will screen again tonight in several area theaters.

Pro Tip: Download this free app before you go — the TAL crew pulled some strings to allow audiences to use their phones at one point in the performance. Go here to find nearby theaters. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. and tickets are $20 (more than a 3D movie, but way less crappy).

Northside Tavern hosts a fundraiser for End Slavery Cincinnati tonight from 5-10 p.m. Learn about human trafficking in the country and right here in Cincinnati, and what you can do to help raise awareness and bring it to an end. from 5-10 p.m. Enjoy live music from The Flavor Junkies and Wild Mountain Berries, door prizes and treats, for a great cause. Admission is $5 at the door.

Know Theater welcomes two local comedy groups onstage tonight. Underbelly Comedy and Off the Rocks Improv team up for a "Little Big Night" of laughs. There will be stand-up, improv, sketch comedy and more from some of the city's truly talented performers. Five bucks gets you a seat and a beer! What more could you possibly want? Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show begins at 8 p.m.

Check our our To Do page for more productions, exhibits and events every day and follow our music blog for nightly live shows.

 
 
by Jac Kern 03.14.2012
Posted In: Music, Events, Fun, Culture at 11:39 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Wednesday To Do List

The Cincinnati Art Museum currently has a collection of Monet paintings on display; if you haven't checked it out, see our review for details. Dr. Benedict Leca, the CAM’s Curator of European Painting, will stop by Joseph-Beth (Rookwood) tonight to discuss the making of Monet in Giverny: Landscapes of Reflection. From 6-7:30 p.m., Dr. Leca will shed light on the 12 Monet pieces on display, explaining how the theme of reflection, both literally and figuratively, can is expressed throughout the exhibition. After the gallery discussion, browse Joseph-Beth's excellent collection of books and magazines, and stop by the attached Bronte Bistro for a bite to eat or glass of wine.

Occupy Cincinnati has experienced some recent victories, settling the federal lawsuit against the city and getting a 24-hour public space designation for a year. Tonight, the organization holds a general assembly at the OC warehouse space, 2023 Dunlap St., Over-the-Rhine. From now on, the group will meet on Monday and Wednesdays, 6-8 p.m. and Saturdays at 3 p.m. to discuss issues, working groups and general business matters. All are welcome to attend these assemblies and share ideas, express concerns or just sit in and observe. Follow the group on Facebook for updates and assembly information.

Tonight is the first installment of at the Search for the Spiritual Through Art: Music, Worship and Faith series, "Expression in Jewish, Christian, Islamic and Hindu Religious Traditions." Dr. James Buchanan of Xavier University and Dr. Richard Sarason of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion to discuss "The Intersection of Music, Worship and Spirituality in Religions Around the World." The lecture, hosted by Cincinnati Art Museum begins at 5 p.m. Tickets are free for students, $10 for members and seniors, $20 for everyone else. The entire series is $60, $30 for members and seniors, also free for students. Find details here.

Looking for dinner plans? On such a summery day like today, we suggest Eli's BBQ on the East side. From pulled pork sammies to smoked ribs, Eli's does barbecue right. You're even welcome to make yourself at home and BYOB, so crack open a beer, chow down on some hot dogs, and enjoy the choice tunes coming from Eli's turntables. Read our review of Eli's BBQ for more info.

For today's arts and theater offerings, check out our To Do recommendations and follow our music blog for tonight's live shows.

 
 
by Jac Kern 09.25.2012
Posted In: Events, Fashion, Music, Movies, TV/Celebrity at 08:49 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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I Just Can't Get Enough...Emmys

Jac's roundup of pop culture news and Internet findings

The 64th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards took place Sunday night. Each year I get excited for this one awards show dedicated to television, and every year I forget how boring and predictable it usually is.

First off, there is no booze served at the Emmys (unlike the drink-friendly Golden Globes which honor TV and film), and that just puts a damper on everything. Pre-show red carpet interviews have to be one of the most uncomfortable interactions ever (I swear one E! douche bag actually said, “I don’t really care, ‘cause we’re dudes, but it’s my thing tonight — Who are you wearing?” Gag.) — stars need some hooch to make it all OK.

Then there are the clear academy favorites that are continually nominated year after year for no apparent reason — Can’t we all agree Big Bang Theory lacks any real humor or geek cred? But I suffer through the Emmys just in case there’s a redeeming wardrobe malfunction or surprise winner.

                                      Raise your hand if you're tired of faux nerdery!

Jimmy Kimmel made an entertaining host, playfully poking fun at various celebs and, in a particularly funny bit, showed an “In Memoriam” video of himself, stating that we shouldn’t wait until stars are dead to remember their work.

The big winners of the night were Showtime’s drama series Homeland, the HBO movie Game Change and ABC’s Modern Family (one of those perpetual comedy winners).

Fashion trends for the night (and fall in general) included bold solids and metallics, but I always find it interesting just a few stars sport very similar, striking looks. This year it was apparently good luck to mimic the award statue — all dressed in yellow, Julianne Moore (Game Change), Julie Bowen (Modern Family) and a pregnant Claire Danes (Homeland) each walked away with a golden lady for their respective leading performances.

The good: Tracy Morgan faked a medical issue to generate buzz, Amy Poehler and Julia Louie-Dreyfus “accidentally” swapped acceptance speeches and Jon Stewart kept censors on their toes during his acceptance speech on behalf of The Daily Show (which makes 10 wins in a row for the show). I was happy to see Jessica Lange honored as best supporting actress in a miniseries/movie — and, really, how smart of them to re-define American Horror Story each season, categorizing it as a miniseries. The always-hilarious Louis C.K. was "vindicated" with two Emmys for his writing on Louie and his stand-up special, Louis C.K.: Live at the Beacon Theater. And while the drama category was filled with some of my favorite shows, a very deserving Homeland pretty much swept the category. Aaron Paul was awarded for his role as Jesse Pinkman on Breaking Bad, to which I say, “Yeah, bitch!” While Paul may have been confused during fashion week, he must have picked up some style tips on the catwalk, because his chocolate suit was sick, and only enhanced by his fiance’s coordinating gown. 

          All together now: Aww!

Season 4 of Breaking Bad was outstanding, and I’m a Jesse fan but…

The bad: Giancarlo Esposito should have won for his performance in Breaking Bad. I will never not be terrified of him after seeing him as the disturbing Gus Fring. I would have liked to see Kristen Wiig win for her last season on SNL. And Jon Cryer? I love ya, Duckie, but Two and a Half Men does not belong in the awards arena.

            "Wait, me? Are you guys sure?"

So, it was mostly a snoozefest, but at least we had the opening skit featuring all the leading ladies and, namely, a “nude” Lena Dunham eating cake in a bathroom stall.

In non-Emmy news, Clint Eastwood’s infamous empty chair assault during the Republican National Convention is old news by now, but that’s not going to stop the folks at Extra from babbling on about it. During an interview about his film Trouble With the Curve, Eastwood had this to say: "If someone's dumb enough to ask me to go to a political convention and say something, they're going to have to take what they get."

Serious question: Is Amanda Bynes the new Britney? With Ms. Spears cleaning off her Cheeto dust to fulfill her duties as “Britney, bitch” on The X Factor, another downward-spiraling starlet must accept the role as train wreck supreme. Sure, Lindsay Lohan is the obvious candidate, but if you’ve been following the “retired” actress of Nickelodeon fame, you know Bynes is barreling to the front of the race. Seemingly out of nowhere, Bynes has recently had her car impounded after facing charges for a DUI, driving without a license (twice) and two hit-and-runs.

I will go as far as calling my dad in from the 'burbs to chauffeur my ass around (or, in dire situations, dealing with the living hell that is Ron’s Cab) to avoid traffic stops and drunk driving. Can’t these child stars payroll a driver to be available at their every whim, or call a damn taxi? Also, people are saying she's crazier than one of those silly characters she played when she was 12.

              AMANDA PLEASE

Apple sold more than 5 million iPhone 5s over the weekend, completely running out of stock. Those who didn’t camp outside Apple stores or take advantage of pre-sale offers will have to wait until October for the newest iPhone, but I borrowed my boyfriend’s I tested one out all professional-like over the weekend. Here’s the rundown. “Fastest, thinnest, lightest iPhone ever?” Yes. It's so light, it feels like a toy phone that should have chiclets inside or something.