Summer of reading: A quick kickoff note

Hello everyone!

with my personal countdown of my first class as an online student starting in a couple of days. I decided to restart my love of reading. These are the books I am currently reading:

Cleopatra and Frankenstein by Coco Mellors- I have recently started to pick up actual books and when I walked in to a bookstore the cover caught my attention. Because it looks exactly like a painting and it stood out from the other books that were next to it. I am only about 3 chapters in but I am already absorbing Cleo’s and Frank’s life. I totally recommend it.

Link to buy is here: https://www.politics-prose.com/book/9781635576818

The Guncle by Steven Rowley: so the one thing I used from the library is there amazing audiobooks selection and I have been waiting to listen to this book since December 2021. I tend to listen to audiobooks on a regular basis since I started listening to podcasts. Mostly because I tend to do a lot of multitasking and tend to be doing up to 4 things at once. I rarely don’t do humorous books but the description of this one convince me to add it to my check out list.

Link is here is buy: https://www.politics-prose.com/book/9780525542308

What books are on your early summer reading list?

Comment below!!!

Welcome to the Insta-Hood: @AGFA !

This week I had the pleasure of interviewing one of my favorites: @AGFA !!!

  1. How did this company start and what is the main purpose of this company?

“The American Genre Film Archive (AGFA) was founded in 2009. We’re a 501(c)(3) non-profit that exists to preserve the legacy of genre movies through collection, conservation, and distribution. We fulfill our mission through theatrical screenings, home video releases, and lab work.”

2. How do you go about selecting a movie to become a part of you film catalog?

“It’s really a case by case basis for theatrical and home video. The through-line is that curation is handled by the team. I oversee home video and acquisitions, but we all make suggestions. Theatrical is broader, as we have a constant influx of new titles from our partners like Arrow Films, Vinegar Syndrome, Shout! Factory, Severin, and many others.”

3. What is your personal favorite movie from your home video and why?

“This is a difficult question! My personal favorite is usually whatever title we’re working on at the moment.

But if I had to choose some highlights that I’m personally proud of, they would be our three DORIS WISHMAN box sets (THE FILMS OF DORIS WISHMAN: THE TWILIGHT YEARS—the first one—is out this month), BOARDINGHOUSE, TREASURE OF THE NINJA, WHAT REALLY HAPPENED TO BABY JANE? AND THE FILMS OF THE GAY GIRLS RIDING CLUB, and LIMBO.”

4. Can you talk about the process and details if someone wanted to book a theatrical booking?

“Of course! Booking is very easy with AGFA. Bret Berg, head of theatrical, handles all of our outreach and bookings. He’s incredibly talented and knowledgeable when it comes to film programming, so that makes us kind of a one-stop-shop for all genre booking needs. Booking fees vary by the number of times the movie plays, size of theater, etc.”

5. Who does the cover art for the home video releases?

“I handle the design for AGFA home video releases. My favorites so far would be THE FILMS OF DORIS WISHMAN: THE TWILIGHT YEARS and SMUT WITHOUT SMUT: THINGS TO COME + THE DIRTY DOLLS.”

6. Do you have any exciting news or events that you would like to share?

“Constantly! The best way to stay informed on all things AGFA is to sign up for our email list or follow us on Twitter and Instagram”

For more information the following contact information is below:

Website: https://www.americangenrefilm.com/

If you would like to make a donation : https://www.americangenrefilm.com/donate/

Instagram: @AGFA

Twitter: https://twitter.com/filmarchive

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCr2Dm_wInUo-_wT6p6GPHZg

Welcome to the Insta-hood: @fallinepodcast !

Hello everyone, this week I had the pleasure of interviewing a podcast : @falllinepodcast !

  1. How did you come up with your podcast?

“Brooke, my co-creator, came up with the title. The Fall Line is a geological boundary that
marks a shift across our home state (Georgia) and delineates a marked change in climate,
soil, what grows and doesn’t grow, etc.— a stark difference in worlds. We view it as a
metaphor that operates on a few different levels: what cases do or do not get attention
based on where and who they happen to, how things can fall through the cracks (the
“line”), reading between the lines to see the underlying problems and issues, the
intersecting issues or lines that create layers of difficulty for families seeking justice and
attention for cold cases. . . it’s a pretty complex image, for us. It also evokes the South,
which is our home base. We cover stories outside the Southeastern US when someone
needs us to do so, but most of our work is centered here. Now, do we occasionally get
confused with fashion podcasts or skiing podcasts? Absolutely. We didn’t even know about
the skiing thing. There’s not a lot of skiing down here, as you might imagine.”

2. What made you want to start doing the podcast?

Laurah

“I (Laurah) spent the last decade or so working as an English professor with a specialty in creative writing.

Brooke

Brooke is an LPC (licensed professional counselor). We’ve been friends since college and were spending a lot of time together in 2016 and 2017, since we have children the same age. Around that time, I had gotten a small grant to develop a podcasting class at the university. I was already experienced in writing narrative nonfiction and in archival research. I’d also been using true crime in the classroom for some time. I liked to use headlines and reporting regarding unsolved cases to discuss social and political issues and to teach my students to identify ethical reporting, and how to sort out plausible claims from conspiracy theories on platforms like YouTube. This was for rhetoric and composition or Honors English. This dated back long before TikTok or Instagram or before I even listened to podcasts—I had no idea where this genre would go. I was trying to show them, for instance, how conspiracy theories about the death of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls operated, and how bad information or reporting operated, how spurious claims form, the effect on legal cases and victims’ families, etc.

By 2017, I had begun to listen to podcasts in all genres and assign them in class, and to look for articles related to subjects to help students understand different issues. This was really helpful in my argumentation courses, which students can find really dull.

As I was teaching myself how to podcast for my upcoming narrative podcasting class—how to use recording equipment—I heard about a case from Augusta, GA that I’d never come across before: Jeannette and Dannette Millbrook, who were 15 when they disappeared on March 18, 1990. I had always followed cold cases, so it was a surprise to me that I hadn’t been aware of missing twins from a city only two hours from Atlanta. Missing twins are rare, especially in a non-familial abduction. At the time I encountered their case, they were one of the only pairs of missing twins (non-familial-related case) in the United States that we were aware of. I believe I heard of their story on The Trail Went Cold or Thin Air. Both podcasts covered them very close together; I later found out an advocate had reached out on behalf of the family. But when I went searching for information, there was. . . nothing. A few articles from 2013, and that was it. A few message board posts. That’s when I found out their case had been closed in 1991, a year or so after they disappeared, and not opened again until 2013. But where were the articles from 1990? Because we are in Georgia, I have access to every possible archive that should have that info. I went into class the next day and did a comparison for my students between the Millbrook twins and the Springfield Three. It wasn’t a perfect comparison, but it was decent: a trio of women who disappeared in roughly the timeframe (1992) and in Missouri. They had hundreds of thousands of Google hits. The Millbrook twins had almost nothing. My class discussed the disparity in coverage from a few different angles: cause/effect (what causes this disparity? What is the effect of it?), evaluation, and looking at calls to action. They also looked at the presentation of headlines and descriptions of the victims and family and phrasing.

I was still bothered by the lack of information available. There was absolutely nothing. Not a single article in the hometown paper. If there had been news footage on TV, it was no longer available. When we eventually went down to the archives at the Augusta library, there was nothing there, either. There was no knowledge base available on the case. I decided that maybe it would be possible to assist in changing that by collaborating with the twins’ family in correcting that and creating a base. After all, I had the equipment. I’d learned to use it so I could teach my classes. I knew how to research and write. What I didn’t have was the skill and sensitivity to approach families who had been traumatized.

 That’s where Brooke came in. She had been in counseling for more than a decade, and specialized in family therapy, where she helped people work through grief and trauma. She agreed to conduct family interviews. We knew the Millbrook twins’ family, and especially their sister, Shanta, was actively seeking coverage, so we spoke to her, and slowly began to develop what would become the first season of the podcast. It was a long process; TFL is always a collaboration between family members and the creators. We had no idea where it would go, or that it would be anything more than a few episodes designed to serve the Millbrook twins. But our listeners raised reward money, and then money for a billboard, and then a bigger billboard. And we are able to fund the rent for that billboard and a therapy fund for families today, all through Patreon. 100% of our Patreon funds go to those two goals.

Now, we’ve been making the show for five years (this June!) and have covered dozens of stories. We  no longer work in long single-topic seasons.

We now cover the missing, the murdered, and the unidentified in one to three episodes. In regard to the missing and murdered, we work with family whenever possible—and we don’t currently cover a case unless there’s someone available to consent, unless there is an extenuating circumstance [e.g., unidentified, all family members have passed away]. Family/loved ones have approval over everything. We’ve worked out a system where family members/ loved ones approve their interview transcripts, then approve scripts.

now I work with a few research assistants who help me pull initial articles and file FOIA (freedom of information act requests), and we were able to hire a producer, Maura, who makes us sound like we’re actual professionals. Our senior research assistant, Bryan Worters, has trained as a genetic genealogist during his time with us and has assisted law enforcement with locating the family of one of Samuel Little’s victims (Miriam Chapman). He’s also fluent in Spanish and helps with translating, as does special content advisor Guadalupe Lopez. Our other assistants, Kyana Burgess and Michaela Morrill, are former students of our friend and  colleague forensic anthropologist Dr. Amy Michael.

 We have permanent content advisors who have life experience we don’t, Brandy C. Williams, Liv Fallon, and Vic Kennedy, who review all our material, and special content advisors who come in when we’re tackling subjects outside of the experience of our regular content advisors. Our hope is that the show can be, above all, a platform that provides knowledge, gets correct case information out there,  and leaves family, friends, and experts feeling good that they participated. No one should be re-traumatized while attempting to get attention for their loved one’s case.”

3. How can someone submit a case and what information do they need to provide?

“We have a case submission form available on our website, which can be found here:https://www.thefalllinepodcast.com/case-submissions

We ask for contact info, a description, and any links that can be provided.

We can’t respond to all submissions, but we do make sure to respond to every family that reaches out. If we can’t cover a story, we try to match you with a trusted friend who we think can over the case.”

4. What if someone wants to help out with a donation or wants to volunteer: how can they go about it?

“We don’t have volunteers, as we think people should be paid for their work! We do encourage people to donate to the following nonprofits:

Black and Missing Foundation

Private Investigations for the Missing

Sovereign Bodies Institute

Trans Doe Task Force

DNA Doe Project”

5. How do you pick out a case to cover?

” We look for cases that have gotten little to no media attention—this would mean no TV specials, not covered on lots of podcasts, and cases must be cold—that means 6+ years. That’s because our skillset is suited to helping with cases that have been left without any activity. We are able to reach out to law enforcement and other experts, like medical examiners, and offer to collaborate on such cases, and have a good success rate. We also have archival skills that are best suited to cold cases. Cases that are still under active investigation are best suited to our colleagues like Voices for Justice, The Vanished, Crimelines, War Cry, Unresolved, Hands Off My Podcast, Trace Evidence, Noir True Crime Files, True Consequences, Murder She Told, Black Girl Gone, and others.  In terms of topic: We focus on unsolved murders, unidentified persons, and disappearances.

We primarily cover cases in the Southeastern United States, particularly those involving communities downplayed or even ignored in mainstream media or, sometimes, investigation. We especially prioritize victims who experienced lack of coverage due to factors like race, sexuality, gender identity, religion, disability, immigration status, involvement in sex work, poverty, housing insecurity, and many other considerations.  We will cover national cases that meet the previous criteria—lack of coverage due to any confluence of factors.”

6. Do you have any exciting news or events that you would like to share?

“As for The Fall Line, we’re working on many new episodes, and are remastering several of our early Doe episodes for summer re-release with updates. We are always looking for fascinating expert interviews, so please suggest those, too! You can use the same submission form.

Laurah is currently writing a book (to be published with Hachette) on the topic of forensic science and how it is used to identify people known as ‘Does,’ or unidentified decedents, and her involvement in the recent solve of the case of “Ina Jane Doe,” a woman found murdered in Illinois in 1993, who was identified in March of 2022 as Susan Minard Lund.  The book focuses on all the different kinds of forensic techniques—art, odontology, skeletal analysis, genetic genealogy, and DNA—that have developed and are developing, and the experts that are working to identify the tens of thousands of unidentified decedents in the US. The book should be out in late 2023. It’s tentatively titled Lay Them To Rest.

If you would like more information. The following contact information is below:

Website: https://www.thefalllinepodcast.com/

Instagram: @falllinepodcast

Email: falllinepodcast

“Condoms!, Condoms!, Condoms!”: Bea Arthur is my fave golden girl

When Bea Arthur accepted the role of Dorothy Zbornak in the sitcom the Golden Girls. She probably had no idea what an lasting impression she made on millions of people. I started watching the show when I was eight years old. I tended to watch a lot of shows that were aimed towards a much more older crowd since I considered my television to be one of my best friends.

I was such a fan of TGIF shows and anything that seemed funny to older people, so the Golden girls were right in my ball park!

As a child I was particular in awe of Dorothy’s wit, intellect, and on point comebacks:

I often tried to match her witty remarks in real life with my classmates but no one really got my jokes. I guess I was the only one in my 2nd grade class that watched the Golden Girls.

I feel like all of the characters in the show were very distinct their roles but I felt like Dorothy had the best lines. She seemed like the voice of reason in many of their zany adventures or when dealing with her ex-husband Stan:

One of my favorite episodes of Dorothy and Stan. Is episode eight, season 7 called the Monkey Show. When Dorothy’s sister comes to visit her and the girls. Stan goes to therapy to deal with getting over Dorothy and the therapist suggests that Stan uses a toy Monkey to talk about his feelings about Dorothy. I am not gonna lie I really wish I had a toy Monkey to used as an emotional tool.

What I also admired about the Dorothy character is her unique sense of style:

She did not shy away from a good blazer or a print!

She was even forced to wear a clown hat but yet managed to make it look fashionable!

Bea Arthur truly evolved Dorothy into a character that was a true friend and always there to help out her roommates when in a jam but obviously throwing some witty shade before doing it.

until next time!!!!

Great Small Businesses: @jennyeveryday !

This week I interviewed a great small business: @jennyeveryday !

  1. Tell me a little bit about how your business started:

“Before we started Everyday is a Holiday we had this whole other life. We restored antique furniture, painted murals and did wall finishes. Then we opened a hand painted furniture store. It was a one thousand sq. foot shop and we hand painted every single thing in it. All the furniture, all the accessories, all of these vintage style boardwalk signs, portraits, flower pots…AND on the side we were making a wholesale collection and selling it to dozens of shops around the world.

It was way too much work for just two people. Then Aaron had a near fatal car crash and we had to slow everything wayyyy down. While he was recovering from multiple surgeries we started selling hand painted signs on ebay. Seriously, we were living on just a few signs a month and that was it. That’s when we named ourselves Everyday is a Holiday. And over the years the brand evolved and we began to branch out. We started a blog, we traveled around the country teaching classes, we wrote a book called “Mixed Media Masterpieces with Jenny & Aaron” (you can find it on Amazon), and we made a scrapbooking paper collection too.

SONY DSC

But the true core of Everyday is a Holiday has always been our online shop. We make pieces that celebrate all the good things in life. Not just holidays and birthdays, but also the collectibles we grew up with and the everyday sweets and treats that make life great.”

2. What is your most popular item in your store and why do you think it’s so popular?

“The most popular piece in our shop is always changing, but our all-time most popular is our Jumbo bottle of Sprinkles plaque.

It was the first in our “Holiday Brand” pieces. We think it’s popular because everyone loves vintage style packaging, and it’s got another thing going for it as well – it’s JUMBO. A container of sprinkles in real life is about 4 inches tall. There’s something really fun about a 16 inch tall bottle of Sprinkles hanging on your wall. And it’s also super colorful and works with lots of different color palettes. And a very close second most popular piece of ours is our Donut plaques.”

3. What is your favorite holiday and why?

SONY DSC

“Yakiddingmerightnow? Hardest question ever. But we’ll try – Halloween is probably our biggest and busiest. And it’s kinda funny because it’s the one time of year that we stray from our bright pastel & candy color theme. Though we do find a way to tie in a lot of pink & aqua at Halloween. Personally it’s our favorite holiday because we LOVE the fall and my birthday is in October. Growing up I always had Halloween themed birthday parties. But we celebrate all of the holidays all year round. We’ve got Easter Bunnies sitting next to Christmas trees, and heart shaped boxes of chocolates side by side with Jack O’Lanterns, and there’s Birthday Party stuff everywhere. We go all out for most holidays except St. Patrick’s Day. It’s my mom’s fave holiday and every single year she tries to convince us to make a St. Patrick’s Day piece, but it never happens, lol. Too much kelly green for me. “

4. Can you talk a little bit about your custom pieces?

“We always wish that we could do more custom pieces, but our everyday pieces are completely handmade so we rarely get extra time. We love painting personalized cakes and signs the most. Depending on the job a custom order can take anywhere from 6 weeks to ummm…many months. And painting people’s pets is super fun! We also love painting oversized food plaques for bakeries, cafes, and indie food based companies and brands.  “

5. Do you have any exciting news or events that you would like to share?

“YES! We’re super psyched about a couple of things. First, this year we’re actually going to have a Christmas in July sale. Every year we want to do it, but then things get too busy. But this year it is happening! We want to get all sorts of snowy & glittery in the middle of the summer. And also in the very near future…within days from now…we’re launching some new Party Foods plaques. You know – all those classic childhood birthday or classroom party foods. Slices of pizza, hot dogs, ice cream of course…but the centerpiece of the collection is our life-size Submarine sandwich! It’s more than a foot long, and painting it was insane! It’s easily my new favorite piece. To us, having a vintage stuffed bunny hanging side by side with a birthday cake and a giant sub sandwich is perfection. “

If you like more information. the following contact information is below:

Instagram: @jennyeveryday

Shop: https://everydayisaholiday.bigcartel.com/

Man of the Moment: Chewbacca!

This month’s man of the moment is Chewbacca!

He is one of my favorite Star Wars characters so I decided to make him May’s man of the moment!

He is a couple of reasons why Chewbacca is amazing:

In 1997 at the Mtv Movie Awards he received a lifetime achievement award:

The inspiration of Chewbacca came from George Lucas’s dog:

George Lucas had an Alaskan Malamute and would often sit in his car’s passenger’s seat when he drove. His dog was huge and hairy which would cause people to confused him as an actual person when they would drive by.

We really don’t know his exact age but he is well over 200 years old. He looks wonderful for his age!!

Stuart Freeborn (makeup supervisor) creation the look of Chewbacca:

George Lucas hired him because of his previous work on Stanley Kubrick films. Such as Dr. Strangelove and 2001: A Space Odyssey:

Chewbacca is a mixture of a dog, monkey, cat and lemur.

Chewbacca comes from long lineage of Wookies or otherwise known of “People of the Trees” from the planet Kashyyyk.

Han’s Solo is his best friend:

Chewbacca’s house is am amazing treehouse with his family in Rwookrrorro.

There are many many countless reason why Chewbacca is awesome. I first saw him on cable tv when I was six years old. He seemed like someone who is always there when you need him most and is very dependable.

This book was one of my favorite books to check out at the library and it became a standard in my 3rd grade reading list.

Congrats Chewie on being May’s MAN OF THE MOMENT!!!!!

until next time!!!

Sources: starwars.fandom, Internet Movie Database, and youtube.com

Great Small Businesses: @Fresa_Skate_Shop_lv_!

1. Tell me a little about yourself.

“My name is Amanda AKA Fresa. I was born in El Salvador, I’m a wife a mother and enjoy the simple things in life”

2. What made you interested in opening a skate shop?

” I lost my job in 2020 like many people around the world. I was depress, and my husband was concern and he casually brought up how much I love skating when I was young and rest is history lol… That conversation spark something in me. So I got online and purchase some roller skate. I meat some great people along the way and saw the need the skate community in Las Vegas had for a roller skate shop. I took a leap and here we are.”

3. What is your most popular item in your store?

“Our shop apparel. In particular tattoo colleague designed by a local skater.”

4. Can you talk about your pop up events at your store?

“I love our pop up events. We do them once a month.”

5. Do you have any exciting news or events that you would like to share?

” yesss! We will be participation on rollercon event in July. This is one of the biggest roller skating/derby event of the year.”

If you would like more information. The following contact information is below:

Instagram: @fresas_skate_shop_lv

Online Shop: https://fresasskateshop.com/