Tuesday, February 28, 2017

The Jazz Ensemble - Introducing the Band

Via apassion4jazz.net

"Piano: Pianists are intellectuals and know-it-alls since they studied theory, harmony and composition in college..." Continue reading: The Jazz Ensemble - Introducing the Band - A Passion for Jazz!

Millennial Myths Dispelled: Andrew Au

Think millennials are lazy, entitled and self-centered? Andrew Au says you're wrong. Millennial Myths Dispelled: Andrew Au by Laurel Moglen, Feb. 22, 2017 Forbes

Saturday, February 25, 2017

How a Transgender Man Tries to Honor His Muslim Faith

Via latimes: (...)"This path he had taken was not an easy one. Perhaps, however it would settle once and for all: Could Alex be transgender and Muslim at the same time?

"Muslim Arabs have some history with people who hold a culturally recognized third gender, including eunuchs who lived in the time of the prophet Muhammad and came into contact with him. But not in the modern period.

(...)"Alex is aware of media reports that naively heralded Iran as an affirming place for transgender people in the wake of the 1987 decision by the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini allowing gender-reassignment surgery. Iran is now the second-largest center for the procedure behind Thailand, according to some estimates.

(...)""Those decisions just allow them to 'fix' people and say that they don't have gay people," Alex says. "It's because they are so conservative, not because they are liberal in any way. They would never allow someone like me: a trans man who is sexually attracted to men and women and trans men and trans women."

(...)"Alex sometimes envies the path of his best friend, Zaki Hale, who is also Palestinian American.

""My cousin told me you can't be gay and Muslim, so I just said, 'I'd much rather be gay,'" Zaki told Alex.

"Zaki, 22, has never looked back.

(...)"For him, it is no easier to shed his faith than his gender and sexuality.

"He knew there would be days when worries over his body image would prevent him from even leaving his apartment. On Facebook this summer, he typed that he was searching for "anyone who has time just to help me just get out the house without crying. I'm reaching out cuz I need help."

"But to his surprise, the struggle to reconcile his identity has brought moments of exhilaration as well.

"At San Francisco's Pride Parade this year, he drew loud cheers as he marched wearing the trans flag on his back as a cape and his father's kaffiyeh hanging from his neck. On his arm, he showed off his tattoo of the Arabic word for strength.

"Alex is studying psychology at City College of San Francisco. "Because, you know, of my past," he said. "I like working out what is the difference between persuasion and manipulation and figuring out where that manipulation is really rooted."

"But the acclaim coincided with a quiet realization that maybe he wasn't too far off from Zaki's conclusion that you couldn't be Muslim and LGBTQ. So, in frustration, he stopped going to the mosque." Read the article: How a Transgender Man Tries to Honor His Muslim Faith by Garrett Therolf, July 21, 2015 Los Angeles Times

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

The Lady Who Shot Lee Morgan

Via Jason Palmer's Weblog: The Lady Who Shot Lee Morgan - By Larry Reni Thomas: The Story of Helen Morgan, if You Didn’t Know Already jasonpalmerjazz.wordpress.com (Image: Art Blakey and Lee Morgan)

Monday, February 20, 2017

My February 2017 Fragrance Favorites List

From Shalimar to Fantasy, my preferences in perfume span from classic to trendy, yet always seem comfortably classified in the Floral Oriental olfactive family. Guerlain Shalimar (1925) whose legend is not only its iconic blend of lemon and vanilla over a musky bed of sandalwood but the story behind the perfume, of a widower who built the Taj Mahal with all its sentimental yet ostentatious rose-clad glory in memory of his dead wife, is my inspiration this week for personal perfume blending. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to recreate the best parts of Shalimar if you have lemon and vanilla oils in your perfume organ. It won't smell like Shalimar, but if you're lucky, more like a pleasant hotel soap redolent of lemon sorbet.

Britney Spears Fantasy by Elizabeth Arden which is a wonderful gourmand scent with notes of quince and kiwi constructing a key lime tartness atop a vanillic-woody base, shares elements with Shalimar, primarily of citrus and vanilla. I tried one of the Fantasy flankers the other day, and I honestly can't smell the difference between the original Fantasy and Fantasy Rocker Femme which supposedly has a coconut note in it. I tried another flanker before (Remix?), which also smelled like Fantasy, so I've decided the Fantasy series isn't nearly as daring as Guerlain's offerings such as Shalimar Light (Shalimar Eau Légère Parfumée), my favorite variation of Shalimar from 2003 (last edited at 11:34 AM).

The other day, I didn't ask a woman which perfume she was wearing, but it was a nice, somewhat sweet fruity floral. I'd love a new perfume like that, but I have no clue where to look for generic girly these days.

Top fragrances for February 2017:

Guerlain Shalimar Light
Britney Spears Fantasy Rocker Femme
Paris Hilton
Rihanna Reb'l Fleur
Taylor Swift Wonderstruck Enchanted
JLo Miami Glow
Ralph Lauren Big Pony 2

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Le Pen: French Jews Will Have to Give Up Israeli Citizenship

Image: French Marianne Catherine Deneuve and Gerard Depardieu in Fort Saganne

Marine Le Pen wants everyone to know Russia is Europe while Israel is not, that in her France, yarmulkes and hijabs will not be accepted, and anyone with French dual citizenship with non-European countries must renounce it.

Via Haaretz: "In a France ruled by the far-right Marine Le Pen, Jewish citizens will be forced to give up their Israeli citizenship, the Front National party leader said on Thursday." Le Pen: French Jews Will Have to Give Up Israeli Citizenship - Leading contender in French election tells interviewer she won't allow dual citizenships with non-European countries. Asked specifically about Jews and Israel, she said: 'Israel isn't an EU member.' By Roni Bar, Haaretz 10.02.20

Via JTA — "Marine Le Pen, the leader of France’s far-right National Front party, said she favored making it illegal to be a dual citizen of France and other countries outside Europe – including Israel and the United States.

"Le Pen, who according to some polls is the leading candidate in France’s presidential elections in May, spoke about dual French-Israeli nationality in replying to a question Thursday during a two-hour interview on the France 2 television channel.

"Nearly an hour into the interview, the French-Lebanese journalist Lea Salame asked Le Pen to “clarify” certain aspects of her plan to outlaw dual nationality in France for French citizens who are also nationals of non-European countries.

"Asked whether this applied to Russia, which is in Europe but is not a member of the European Union, Le Pen said: “You know very well I want a Europe of nations and Russia belongs to it,” Le Pen said.

"Le Pen then was asked whether her plan was to make it impossible for Moroccans and Americans to have dual passports, while allowing it for Russians.

"“Yes, that’s what it’s like in Germany,” Le Pen responded.

"“Does your Europe extend to Israel, and let me clarify: Will you demand that French Jews renounce their Israeli dual citizenship?” Salame asked, to which Le Pen replied: “Israel is not a European country and I see that Israel itself accepts this assertion and opinion. So I’m against dual nationality outside Europe.”" Marine Le Pen: No more dual nationalities for Israelis, Americans and other non-Europeans - February 10, 2017 

Via Tablet: "Earlier this week, the far-right leader reiterated her longstanding support for banning the wearing of yarmulkes in public spaces, as part of an overall ban on religious (mostly Muslim) attire. “The struggle against radical Islam should be a joint struggle and everyone should say, ‘there, we are sacrificing something,’” she told Israel’s Channel 2. “Maybe they [Jews] will do with just wearing a hat [instead of a yarmulke], but it would be a step in the effort to stamp out radical Islam in France.” Conveniently, Le Pen has never called to ban wearing crosses in public, having previously claimed that “the Catholic religion doesn’t have conspicuous symbols.”" Why Marine Le Pen Wants to Ban French Jews from Wearing Yarmulkes and Having Dual Israeli Citizenship - Latent anti-Semitism and a desire to marginalize Muslims are driving the far-right presidential candidate to ensnare Jews in her policies. By Yair Rosenberg, February 10, 2017 tabletmag.com

Added at 9:44 AM via The Jerusalem Post: "Israel feels a deep connection to Europe, but should remember that its affection for Europe has a lot in common with Stockholm Syndrome. Israel considers itself part of the Western cultural tradition, and of course it is; along with Greece, it is the birthplace of the Western cultural tradition. Israel should remember that it is much less a product of European culture than Europe is a product of Israeli and Judean culture." Moving Israel from Europe to Asia - As more and more West European Jews make aliya, western Europe’s tech industries will take comparable hits. By Joshua Gelernter, 19 Jan 2015 The Jerusalem Post

Monday, February 13, 2017

Al Jarreau Valentine's Day Marathon ❤

"After All" - Music by Al Jarreau, Jay Graydon and David Foster from High Crime

Al Jarreau & Melissa Manchester - "The Music of Goodbye" (Out Of Africa Theme) – Music by Alan and Marilyn Bergman, John Barry

Music of Al Jarreau

Music by Al Jarreau and Lee Holdridge

Music by Al Jarreau and Philippe Saisse from L Is for Lover

"No Ordinary Romance"
Music by Michael Gregory from L Is for Lover

RIP Al Jarreau

Alwin Lopez Jarreau
(March 12, 1940 – February 12, 2017)

From Al Jarreau's Twitter: "We ask that no flowers or gifts are sent. A donation page has been set up for Wisconsin Foundation for School Music."

From Wisconsin Foundation for School Music: "Milwaukee-born and raised, Al Jarreau is internationally acclaimed for his ability to sing many styles, his scat singing and his talent of taking on the character of guitar and percussion, all with his versatile and soulful voice. Jarreau has topped the music sales charts with more than 20 albums. He is the only vocalist in history to have Grammy Awards in the 3 categories of jazz, pop, and R&B. Jarreau’s Grammy earnings now total seven, along with a nomination for the theme song from the ever-popular TV show, Moonlighting. Al Jarreau continues to tour the world and delight audiences, while also tirelessly working to promote the importance of keeping music and arts opportunities alive for children everywhere!"

Donate now in Al Jarreau's honor to Wisconsin Foundation for School Music: foundation4schoolmusic.org

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Million Reasons - Lady Gaga

Happy pre-Valentine's Day weekend! ♥

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Lady Gaga Halftime Drone Swarm Was Pretaped to Shield Crowd

Gaga was spectacular, though! She's a musician and performer for the ages. Lady Gaga Halftime Drone Swarm Was Pretaped to Shield Crowd by Henri Gendreau and Alan Levin February 7, 2017 Bloomberg

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Draft for Women: Female Conscription Worldwide

"Norway extended compulsory military service to women in summer 2016. Women currently make up about ten percent of the Norwegian Armed Forces. All medically fit women aged between 19 and 44 years will be obliged to complete at least 19 months of military service.

"Berlin has said it’s considering changing its position on conscription." Conscription for women in Norway | All media content | DW.COM | 14.12.2016 December 17, 2016

"After the first half year of military service, with equal numbers conscripted, the proportion of soldiers who drop out is least among women, reported Aftenposten newspaper.

"‘It turns out that girls are better stickers during initial service than boys. I would call that a good lesson’, said Commander Per-Thomas Boe, who is a staff officer under Chief of Defence, Haakon Bruun-Hanssen, to the newspaper." Fewer women than men are falling out of initial military service by Gerard Taylor, 27. December 2016 Norway Today

"STOCKHOLM — If Sweden reinstitutes the draft, as it is expected to do within a couple of months, many will report the move as a return to a previous era. (...)

"The return to conscription is both a sign of more uncertain times and the result of difficulties Sweden has had in filling its military roster with only volunteer forces. But it would be a mistake to write off the effort as a rollback of progress. Sweden’s initiative will show the draft in its modern incarnation: targeted, highly selective, and applied to both men and women." Bring back the draft. No, really. Sweden’s highly selective conscription of men and women is an opportunity for the military and the young. By Elisabeth Braw, 1/21/17 CET via politico.eu


Related links on PINK MANHATTAN:

Israel Grapples With Military’s Plan to Open Combat Roles to Women - December 30, 2016

Clinton Says Women Should be Included in Draft: Huffington Post - June 16, 2016

My Senator Thinks Drafting Women Gives Equal Opportunity - June 29, 2016

The best countries for gender equality may also have a domestic violence problem - June 26, 2016

President Jimmy Carter Proposes Draft Registration for Women - July 28, 2016


Read more:

"As of 2013, countries that were actively drafting women into military service included Bolivia,[54] Chad,[55]Eritrea,[56][57][58] Israel,[56][57][59]Mozambique [60] and North Korea. [61]Israel has universal female conscription, although in practice women can avoid service by claiming a religious exemption and over a third of Israeli women do so. (...)

"In 2015 Norway introduced female conscription, making it the first NATO member and first European country to have a legally compulsory national service for both men and women.[65] In practice only motivated volunteers are selected to join the army in Norway.[66] (...)

"In 1981 in the United States, several men filed lawsuit in the case Rostker v. Goldberg, alleging that the Selective Service Act of 1948 violates the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment by requiring that only men register with the Selective Service System (SSS). The Supreme Court eventually upheld the Act, stating that "the argument for registering women was based on considerations of equity, but Congress was entitled, in the exercise of its constitutional powers, to focus on the question of military need, rather than 'equity.'"[70]" Conscription (Drafting of women) on Wikipedia

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Most Americans Think the Benefits of the MMR Vaccine Outweigh Risks

Central Park, New York by Stephen Wiltshire stephenwiltshire.co.uk

"Among his first acts as President-elect, Donald Trump signaled his interest in establishing a presidential committee on vaccine safety and scientific integrity, headed by Robert Kennedy Jr., a lawyer known for arguing that a preservative used in some vaccines causes neurological disorders. This is a position at odds with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other organizations which evaluate the safety of childhood vaccines.

"(...)Public concerns about the safety of the MMR vaccine have been percolating since at least 1998 when a research study – later discredited –suggested that MMR vaccines were associated with autism." Read the article: Most Americans Think the Benefits of the MMR Vaccine Outweigh Risks - Some groups still have concerns, however, according to a new study from the Pew Research Center. By Cary Funk on February 2, 2017 Scientific American

Related article: "(...)Environmental lawyer Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., who suggests inoculations are linked to autism, met last week with Trump to discuss a panel to examine what Kennedy called “vaccine safety and scientific integrity.” Although the autism–vaccine claim has been studied and debunked, the president-elect has also suggested a connection. His team later hedged about the panel, saying that nothing had been decided. (Kennedy’s office declined an interview request.)" Continue reading: Proposed Presidential Autism–Vaccine Panel Could Help Spread Disease - Committee mentioned in a Trump meeting last week could scare people away from protective immunizations, scientists say. By John McQuaid on January 19, 2017 Scientific American

Image from Autism Society NL

Wednesday, February 01, 2017

White House: Five-year-old boy detained posed 'security risk'

"The White House has said a five-year-old boy handcuffed and detained for more than four hours at a US airport posed a "security risk"..." Read more: White House: Five-year-old boy detained posed 'security risk' by James Gorman, February 1, 2017 9news.com.au

Related article: Sean Spicer defends detention of 5-year-old: It’s ‘misguided’ to think kids don’t ‘pose a threat’ by David Edwards, 30 Jan 2017 Raw Story