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THE OTHER WOMEN IN MY LIFE!

Of course, I'm kidding! Oh, and before I get jumped on, this celebrity page is not about history or politics, so I am zooming in on the ladies in the popular media. I am not talking about the Booker Ts, the JFKs and MLKs of the world, so ease up. I got pages in my head that will come out soon enough. The people that entertain us also make an impact. I just can't talk about them all. Here are a few that I think are worth noting. I find it more entertaining to spotlight the females:

Gloria Reuben
Gloria Reuben came out of acting obscurity with her role on NBC's E.R. TV show. I saw her in the movies "Timecop" and "In The Nick Of Time" (it broke my heart when she got... well, see the movie), but she really made her mark portraying her E.R. character. Her relationship with Eric Lasalle's character on the show was one thing. The way that she handled the role since the show's writers had her character come down with the HIV virus gave her role a spotlight on and off TV. She handled it very well. I sense a quiet vulnerability that makes me want to give her a big hug, and I'm not usually the hugging type. I've seen her in interviews, and she is as understated as her TV character. She reminds me of a girl I knew in college. Good looking, but not a glamour girl. The wholesome, fall in love with and raise a family type. I was always awful at the game of pursuit, especially when it came to reading hints, signals, and signs. The girl in college turned out to be a Lesbian, and everyone seemed to know this but me. She had to come out and just tell me. She wanted to still be friends, but I was true to my young red blooded male breeding, where even with those women that are your friends you want to think you have at least a snowball's chance in hell. I think it was that I was just embarrassed that I was making such a fool of myself trying to get closer that I couldn't face her anymore. Okay, I wandered enough! Wouldn't it be some kind of crazy karma thing if Gloria was "DC"? I can't wait to see Gloria in more roles. Last time she was visible, she was touring with Tina Turner's farewell Tour. There was also a forgettable flick that had her flash her body a couple times just for kicks. I saw it twice. I'll take my kicks where I can get 'em.
Lela Rochon
Lela caught Hollywood's eye in Eddie's "Harlem Nights", and I read that she really fought to get in the cast of "Waiting To Exhale", refusing to be turned down. Here's another person I look forward to seeing more roles from. I didn't see the movie she did with Timothy Hutton. I glimpsed at their pic together on the cover of Jet, and the thought passed through my mind that if that was real life, Lela would wear dude out! He would not be able to take enough vitamins to stay in her league. I like to pair stars together that would make good movies, and I always thought Lela and Vivica Fox have similar personalities. I could see them in the first black woman "buddy" action flick. And no Thelma and Louise action. I mean action with serious intent behind it, like Lethal Weapon or Terminator, using the best of Hollywood's special effects. Hey, I can dream. Lela's series on Lifetime shows that she may have plumped up a bit. That Tai-Bo is a weak defense against a black woman's genes when mother nature decides it's time to spread! She looks just fine to me, I like a healthy woman. Or used to, that is, when I was looking way back when.. (To my wife: "Hi dear!")
Minnie Driver
I had to include Minnie. She gets my award for the most expressive facial changes. Her specialty seems to be the look that comes over as you as you get bad news. As she goes from happy and carefree to getting her feelings hurt, Minnie has practically put a trademark on that emotion. That had to be her sole purpose for being in "Good Will Hunting". I knew it from the start and sure enough, Matt Damon dumped her because she didn't look enough like Ben Affleck, and her face started that meltdown into tears that tugs at your heartstrings. Same look under different curcumstances in "Return To Me" with that wooden indian, David Duchovny. She just has one of those faces. With that jet black hair she looks more like a Latina than a Brit. She and Sandra Bullock could do a flick playing sisters or something, whatever excuse to let them try to outdo each other on the "vulnerability" scale....


Mary J Blidge is so good, even SHE doesn't really know it yet! I am glad I read that she is dealing better with her fame and the responsibilities that come with it, because fame can be fickle sometimes. You have to be able to handle it, or it will handle you like it did Martin. Mary's voice is so expressive, it can barely be held to the same melody twice. She is the supreme goddess of the sharp notes, and keeps pushing the envelope. Mary J is leaving her signature on remakes as well as rendering her own original songs "unremakeable". You just can't copy those sharp notes she hits. It's unfair to compare her to Aretha. Mary J is out there, and she is out there all alone.

Vivica Fox is starving for a good script! She seems to have a vibrant personality, and it comes across on screen. I first saw her in the TV series "Up All Night". The other-wise forgettable "Booty Call" was much more watchable with her playing "Listerine". And I bet that her personality portrayed in the movie "Soul Food" was pretty close to her own. She felt like family.
Her best roles were as part of the "Set It Off" crew, and in "Why Do Fools Fall In Love". The action in "Set It Off" was unprecedented. Never before had a group of females in movies thrown down like that! It was no rosey story, true, but Pacino and Deniro have played non-heros many times. "Set It Off" got some good press, but it was largely underappreciated by most of Hollywood.

Mya. What can I say about Mya? First, she is way too young for me to be checking out, and second, pictures like the one on the far left makes me repeat the first sentence. The hit that made it for her is "Moving On". This song relies on a heavy hook, probably more than most songs ever have. It's that "Oh ooooh" sound Mya makes at the end of her verses, like, "...you been leaving me all 'alooh-own'....." Anyway, she owes a lot to her video image, which spread the word on her faster than the music. The classic cheerleader senario. I guess it never gets old. Even Britney Spears is biting hard on that cheerleader cliche. I don't care if either of them really was a cheerleader or not. Mya is an instant standout because of her looks and that's not a bad thing. That cafe au lait, jet-black hair, latina-like, Heather Hunter-ish, pixie type look is always a winner. That was a bad ass cover shot of her and Dru Hill on Vibe Magazine.



Lauryn Hill... she can be casually cool, or a magazine covergirl, or singing at the Grammy Awards.

Either way, Lauryn Hill is the most talked about music artist today, male or female. The five Grammys she just won has made her the latest media darling, but those of us that have been feeling her as one of the Fugees are not surprised at all. Her album is as complete a work of musical art as anything out there. Like Mary J, Lauryn defies description. The the media MUST play their games. She has been compared to Erykah Badu as rivals in the same way that Mariah and Whitney have been. But just like Whitney and Mariah squashed that talk by working together, Lauryn and the bad Ms. Badu might just hook up one day to drop a tune on us. I don't think a CD can hold that much talent.

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