Kem – What Christmas Means

ImageAnyone who’s familiar with Kem’s triumphant and personal back-story knows that he gives much credit to his faith, so the poignant title track and sanctified, choir-featuring original, “Glorify The King,” sets the pace and makes it clear what the holidays mean to him and why Jesus’ sacrifice is all the more powerful:“Because You gave your life for me, I’ll worship you with every breath I take/The more I pray, the more I love Christmas day, and this is why I say, I’ll glorify the King.” The two romantic renderings, “A Christmas Song For You” and Kem’s sultrily-spirited duet with Ledisi, “Be Mine For Christmas,” definitely qualify as ‘curl-up-in-front-of-a roaring-fire’ moments that could spark a few new romances (or engagements) by New Year’s Eve. “Doo-Wop Christmas” wraps it all up with shine and sparkle, filled with playful finger-snaps and a Temptations-esque cascade of a cappella tenors and bass that inject mirth and underscore the real reason for the season: “Kids love presents and Santa’s alright with me (alright with me), but I really wanna tell ya what a treasure God’s love can be (love can be, yeah).”

Kem’s debut Christmas CD is not like a reindeer-covered sweater, something that you’d only be seen using once or twice a season, but like a well-chosen accessory or outfit given by that special someone that makes you gasp in delight and gets worn, then worn out, all year long. Its blend of the sensual and the sentimental, as well as Kem’s signature craftsmanship, are the factors that set apart What Christmas Means from other holiday releases and makes it essential in getting the vibe right for that family-filled day, the New-Year kiss and even beyond. Enthusiastically Recommended.


When Style Becomes Gluttony: Over-Accessorizing

ImageNecklaces, bracelets, and rings, oh my! Putting together the perfect outfit for a night out can be daunting if you are suffering from a case of accessory indecision. We’ve all had those moments when we should’ve put away that scarf or left the brooch at home. No one wants to look like a walking, talking jewelry box. So when do we say enough is enough?

[Take one thing off before you leave the house.  — Coco Chanel]

I love accessories. Sometimes, they completely revamp an outfit, saving it from being sent to thrift store heaven. They can also be very inexpensive. It’s easy to see how a person can overkill. Now that I’m older, I’ve learned when to put that extra ring back, but it was not always so easy. CONTINUE READING..

Why Is Breast Cancer Killing So Many Black Women?

Although 1 out of 8 women will develop breast cancer in the United States, it remains deadliest for Black women.  A recent study by the Sinai Urban Health Institute in Chicago, IL reveals that African-American women are more likely to die of breast cancer not due to genetics, but because of racial disparity and inequality in health care.  Subsequently, nearly five Black women needlessly die everyday because they lack the proper information and quality services. The realities of inadequate health care, access, and poverty in the Black community are also mixed with fear, silence, and suspicion of the medical system who only fifty years ago purposefully infected 400 poor Black men with syphilis in a medical study known as the Tuskegee experiment.  Mistrust and historic disenfranchisement greatly impact those battling breast cancer, a disease that has a 98% survival rate if caught early.  In an interview with Dr. Regina Hampton of the Capital Breast Center the Washington Post writes of this skepticism:

“… Hampton and others think [Black] women also carry angst stemming from a historically unhealthy relationship between African Americans and a medical system that was inaccessible. Often lacking the money or insurance for preventive care, many [Black] people didn’t seek medical help until they were seriously ill.”

In addition to Black women, Black male breast cancer patients and survivors like African-American icon Richard Roundtree who played John Shaft in the 1970s Blaxploitation action film Shaft, face the same barriers compounded with the social stigma with having an illness that rarely impacts men.  Because male breast cancer accounts for just 1% of all breast cancer diagnoses, Black men are even less likely to visit their healthcare provider upon discovery of a lump.  Roundtree, a breast cancer survivor since 1993, is an outspoken advocate male breast cancer and encourages others to break the silence and seek treatment.


Huge turnout for Giants Parade Up Market Street in S.F.

ImageWith adoring roars from the crowd and beaming grins from the players, the Giants World Series victory parade strutted up Market Street on Wednesday, ending up in front of City Hall, where the team was handed the key to the city – and the hearts of its fans. Parents, college kids, toddlers, office workers and admirers of all stripes bundled up to avoid the chill, blew horns, clapped, high-fived and screamed themselves hoarse as the ballplayers and marchers passed by. You could hear the din of the estimated 1 million-plus people almost all the way to Detroit. The coinciding of Halloween with the parade day produced an ocean of holiday getups, with Giants regalia slung over the usual witch and ghoul costumes. Even fashionistas might have winked at the mash-ups, given that the Giants team colors are appropriately spooky orange and black. “It’s awesome!” 9-year-old Jenna Wieking yelled as her father hoisted her to his shoulders for her first look at such a huge parade. “There are so many fans so close! So many people!” Like thousands of others, her family made a long drive in – she’s from Davis – to give the team a big hurrah for beating the Detroit Tigers on Sunday to snatch baseball’s biggest crown.

Read more:

Storm-crippled NYC subway creaks back into service

ImageNEW YORK (AP) — New York tried to resume its normal frenetic pace Thursday, getting back much of its vital subway system after a crippling storm, but was l slowed by gridlocked traffic. Commuters lined up at Penn Station to board uptown trains at 6 a.m. Technology worker Ronnie Abraham was on one of them, hoping to get home to Harlem, a trip that is 20 minutes by train and 2 ½ hours by bus. “It’s the lifeline of the city,” Abraham said. “It can’t get much better than this.” Ray Dunn, a paramedic, was trying to get work in the Bronx for the first time since the storm barreled up the East Coast, killing more than 70 people, devastating coastal communities and leaving millions without power from New Jersey to the West Virginia mountains. “There’s no way to get to work unless you drive,” said Dunn, who doesn’t own a car. After reopening its airports, theaters and stock exchange, city officials hoped the subways would ease the gridlock that had paralyzed the city, forcing cars and pedestrians to inch through crowded streets without working stoplights. But television footage Thursday showed heavy traffic crawling into Manhattan, as police turned away cars that carried fewer than three people — a rule meant to ease the congestion that paralyzed the city earlier this week. And the platforms weren’t crowded; a dozen people at a time waited on platforms. An F train headed to a bus stop in Brooklyn rolled in near silence, with just a fraction of its normal load, then sat in a station for 15 minutes while the train waited for a space in the next station. Read more:

News Headlines 10.31.12

Vast storm packs wallop for millions
The awesome scale of Sandy meant an extraordinary number of people received close to a direct hit.
( by Joel Achenbach and Colum Lynch , The Washington Post)
Euthanasia should be a right
Readers respond to an article about the end-of-life decisions and to one about the call of mockingbirds.
(, The Washington Post)
Philadelphia prepares for storm
From laundromats to shelters, officials, residents ready for the arrival of Hurricane Sandy.
( by Lisa Rein , The Washington Post)
The cost of Romney’s larger military?
Walter Pincus examines the candidate’s proposal for boosting troop numbers.
(, The Washington Post)
Exercise may protect the aging brain
A new study suggests that physical activity may mitigate cognitive decline in older adults.
(, The Washington Post)
More National: Breaking National News & Headlines – Washington Post

New York, New Jersey devastated by Sandy
One of the largest and fiercest storms to menace the East Coast in years caused widespread flooding, power outages and damage. At least 16 have died, AP reports.
( by Fredrick Kunkle, Laura Vozzella and Jeremy Borden , The Washington Post)
Hurricane Sandy: District tips and information
( by Washington Post staff , The Washington Post)
Hurricane Sandy pummels East Coast
Storm comes ashore in N.J. but swamps New York city, flooding much of the financial district.
( by Ashley Halsey III, Lori Aratani and Laura Vozzella , The Washington Post)
Hurricane Sandy: Anne Arundel County tips and information
( by Washington Post Staff , The Washington Post)
Hurricane Sandy: Manassas tips and information
( by Washington Post Staff , The Washington Post)
More Post Local: Washington, DC Area News, Traffic, Weather, Sports & More – The Washington Post

Working to reduce food waste and protect the environment
At just 26 years-old, Laura Moreno is a tireless crusader for reducing and recycling food waste.
( by The Partnership for Public Service , The Washington Post)
Rep. Donna Edwards, an outsider again
The Maryland congresswoman is breaking with fellow Democrats by opposing Question 7, which would expand gambling in the state.
( by Miranda S. Spivack , The Washington Post)
Election lawyers at the ready
Thousands of attorneys are poised to challenge election results that may be called into question by machine failures, voter suppression or other allegations of illegal activity.
( by Bill Turque , The Washington Post)
Storm throws a wrench into the works of Va. campaigns, voting efforts
As Sandy approached, it became clear the biggest political impact was likely to be in hotly contested Virginia.
( by Amy Gardner , The Washington Post)
Challenge to surveillance act divides Supreme Court
The justices debate whether anyone can contest the law if they’re not sure they’re being monitored.
( by Robert Barnes , The Washington Post)
More Post Politics: Breaking Politics News, Political Analysis & More – The Washington Post

Carolyn Hax: Travel turbulence
It is reasonable to ask a husband to give his wife and child a two-hour ride to the airport for a three-hour flight? Or is there a larger question here?
(, The Washington Post)
We all agree: Sandy is more than hot air
Hard evidence of a real threat is more convincing than reporters in rain gear.
( by Ann Gerhart , The Washington Post)
Residents pack up, prep for flooding
Low-lying areas braced for flooding, as workers cleared sewer grates and residents prepared to flee.
( by Carol Morello and Corinne Reilly , The Washington Post)
Decoding our ‘Frankenstorm’
Storm cliches and neologisms are a way of trying to assert control when we’re vulnerable to nature’s wrath.
( by Emily Wax , The Washington Post)
Traveling after Sandy
Advice for travelers stuck while Hurricane Sandy storms up the Eastern Seaboard.
( by Andrea Sachs , The Washington Post) More Style: Culture, Arts, Ideas & More – The Washington Post

Businesses adjust to Sandy
Some closed early, but others received a bonanza as the storm bore down.
( by Jonathan O’Connelland Abha Bhattarai Capital Business Staff Writers , The Washington Post)
Microsoft adds features to Windows Phone 8
Microsoft officially unveiled Windows Phone 8 on Monday.
( by Hayley Tsukayama , The Washington Post)
Apple IPad Mini Shipping Delay Suggests That Tablet Sold Out
Apple Inc.’s iPad mini will now take about two weeks to ship to customers who order it from the company’s online store, suggesting the product may be temporarily sold out.
( by Adam Satariano Bloomberg News , Bloomberg)
Chrysler Group Quarterly Net Income Rises to $381 Million
Chrysler Group LLC said its third- quarter net income rose to $381 million from $212 million a year earlier on increased revenue.
( by Bill Koenig Bloomberg News , Bloomberg)
Superstorm Sandy may test limits of homeowners’ insurance
Standard homeowners’ insurance likely won’t cover the damage to flooded basements.
( by Steven Mufson , The Washington Post)
More Business News, Financial News, Business Headlines & Analysis – The Washington Post

TV and radio listings, October 30
(, The Washington Post)
OPINION | Same old Wizards? Maybe not.
Coach Randy Wittman is upbeat about a new attitude on the team as the NBA season begins.
( by Mike Wise , The Washington Post)
For Beal, it’s all in the family
Wizards rookie has the support of parents and brothers as he makes the transition to life in the NBA.
( story by Michael Lee  photo by Katherine Frey , The Washington Post)
Giants built to succeed for the future
After two World Series wins in three years, the San Francisco Giants appear built for even more success.
( by Barry Svrluga , The Washington Post)
Ready for an encore?
After finally getting the championship monkey off his back, the Heat’s LeBron James preps for his next act.
( by Michael Lee , The Washington Post)
More Sports: Sports News, Scores, Analysis, Schedules & More – The Washington Post

Microsoft adds features to Windows Phone 8
Microsoft officially unveiled Windows Phone 8 on Monday.
( by Hayley Tsukayama , The Washington Post)
Google officially announces Nexus 4, Nexus 7 and Nexus 10
Google added a smartphone and two tablets to its gadget lineup.
( by Hayley Tsukayama , The Washington Post)
In Washington he’s a wonk rock star, but he’s Comcast’s secret weapon
David Cohen, the cable giant’s chief lobbyist and a veteran of Philadelphia politics, is critical to its dominance.
( by Cecilia Kang , The Washington Post)
The big market Facebook is missing out on
While the service is still unrivaled as a means of staying connected with friends, its offerings are hobbled by a surprising gap.
( by Brian McConnell, entrepreneur, publisher Translation Reports | ,
Nokia announces $99 Lumia 822
If Nokia wants to save its skin, it’s going to need Verizon’s help.
( by ,
More Technology News – The Washington Post

The cost of Romney’s larger military?
Walter Pincus examines the candidate’s proposal for boosting troop numbers.
(, The Washington Post)
Ningbo protest, response both typical of China’s environmental debate
Chinese are more and more willing to take their grievances to the street, particularly for pollution-related issues.
( by Patti Waldmeir, Leslie Hook and Jamil Anderlini | Financial Times , The Washington Post)
Observers criticize election in Ukraine
In parliament vote, ruling party tightens grip while opposition parties cry foul over campaign, results.
( by Will Englund , The Washington Post)
Education proves difficult amid Pakistan’s conflicts
Teaching continues at middle school in North Waziristan, despite fighting.
( by Michele Langevine Leiby and Saleem Mehsud , The Washington Post)
Hillary Clinton in Algeria to urge military help for Mali
The Algerian government is leery of an international coalition to push militants out of Mali.
( by Anne Gearan , The Washington Post)
More World: World News, International News, Foreign Reporting – The Washington Post

Oil and capitalism
The Rosneft deal casts a cloud over Russia’s economy.
(, The Washington Post)
California’s green life cycle
A challenge to the state’s push to reduce its carbon footprint.
(, The Washington Post)
Romney passes the buck for Sandy
His plan for disasters: Make the states pay.
(, The Washington Post)
Obama’s ‘victory’ failure
One choice may bring the president down.
(, The Washington Post)
The president who doesn’t care
Obama has never espoused a cause bigger than his own political survival.
(, The Washington Post)
More Opinions: Washington Post Opinion, Editorial, Op Ed, Politics Editorials – The Washington Post

Talk about Travel
The Post’s travel writers and editors discuss your travel stories, questions, gripes and more.
(, vForum)
Talk about Travel
The Post’s travel writers and editors discuss your travel stories, questions, gripes and more.
(, vForum)
Dr. Gridlock
The Washington Post’s Dr. Gridlock, Robert Thomson, will be online to take all your questions about Metro, traffic throughout the region and other transportation issues.
(, vForum)
Ask Boswell: Redskins, Caps, Nationals and more
Sports Columnist Tom Boswell answered reader questions about the Redskins, the Capitals, the Nationals, baseball, the NFL and more.
(, vForum)
Colorism in the black community
Author Marita Golden discusses color discrimination within the black community.
(, vForum)