NEWS: Judi Dench, Incest, Kevin Costner, Mitt

Road Dame Judi Dench battles enroaching blindness:

She confessed: “I can’t read scripts any more because of the trouble with my eyes.

"And so somebody comes in and reads them to me, like telling me a story.

"It’s usually my daughter or my agent or a friend and actually I like that, because I sit there and imagine the story in my mind."

… "The most distressing thing is in a restaurant in the evening I can’t see the person I’m having dinner with.

“Actually, what I miss are people corpsing on stage.

"I know there might be something going on but sometimes I can’t see it and that infuriates me as I think I’m really missing out on something.”

Road A second man has been arrested for the beating of Brandon White:

MoragneDorian Moragne turned himself in to Atlanta police custody late Friday afternoon with his attorney close by. According to police, he will be charged with robbery and aggravated assault.

… Moragne, 19, is one of three men police have been seeking in the beating of Brandon White, since video footage of the Feb. 4 incident appeared on the internet.

His surrender makes him the second suspect in police custody. Christopher Cain, 19, was arrested on Feb. 11. Cain, who was being held in the Fulton County jail, is charged with aggravated assault, participation in a criminal street gang, robbery by force and burglary.

Police are still seeking a third man who has not been identified.

Road At Slate, Dear Prudence dispenses good, sane advice to incestuous gay brothers, and good, strong ammunition to slipperyslopers.

Road On Hail Mary candidates and Mitt's impending Michigan disaster.

Road On Frank Vandersloot, the skeezy billionaire and Mormon extremist who's one of Mitt Romney's biggest backers:

Anyone who is the national finance co-chair of Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign deserves probing, substantial scrutiny. That’s equally true of someone who continues to use their vast wealth to influence the outcome of our elections and our most inflammatory political debates. And it’s certainly true of someone who has made it a regular practice of threatening journalists, bloggers and activists who shine light on his political and business practices.

Road If you've ever wondered about exploding pits of pig poop, read this.

Road "Without Betty Dodson, America would be a lot less good at masturbating." Not that she thinks we're very good at it anyway.

Road It's time to clean up our space junk.

Road Dlisted covered Whitney's funeral:

We're coming up on hour three of Whitney Houston's "Going Home" memorial and I don't know how my eyelids are still able to open after sitting through Kevin Costner talking for 35 million minutes about himself, himself, himself, himself, Jesus, himself, himself and how he himself put Whitney in The Bodyguard when nobody else wanted her in it. Oh, and he talked about himself and how Whitney is auditioning before God now (or something like that). The dozens of people taking a nap with their eyes open should've been the choir's cue to sing Kevin off the stage, because DAMN. Dances with Woofs was shorter than Kevin's speech.

Road Someone somewhere will find a way to blame this on the gays. From the Times:

After steadily rising for five decades, the share of children born to unmarried women has crossed a threshold: more than half of births to American women under 30 occur outside marriage.

… Among mothers of all ages, a majority — 59 percent in 2009 — are married when they have children. But the surge of births outside marriage among younger women — nearly two-thirds of children in the United States are born to mothers under 30 — is both a symbol of the transforming family and a hint of coming generational change.

One group still largely resists the trend: college graduates, who overwhelmingly marry before having children. That is turning family structure into a new class divide, with the economic and social rewards of marriage increasingly reserved for people with the most education.

“Marriage has become a luxury good,” said Frank Furstenberg, a sociologist at the University of Pennsylvania.


  1. uffda says

    The incestuous gay brothers – now that’s quite a story with truth being stranger than fiction, and nothing the matter with it at all. I’d just love a lot more detail, and to follow this story. We can’t have their pictures or real names of course but if they were to post their story somewhere on a regular basis I would be a compulsive fan and feel that I would learn something profoundly, perhaps uniquely, human.

  2. MarkUs says

    Love seeing Romney rejected. Number one he’s a narcissist and number two he has a record longer than any other US candidate of taking whatever position will get him elected that particular day.

  3. MarkUs says

    What exactly WAS the highlight of Whitney’s funeral? I started watching it, left for some work, got home watched some more, left for grocery shopping, got home watched some more, took a nap, woke up and it was finishing up. It had to have clocked in longer than the Super Bowl.

  4. Paul R says

    The quotation from Dlisted made me laugh out loud. I cannot stand Costner.

    And I love Dench and feel awful for her. Never seen the term “corpsing on stage.”

  5. Patrick lehman says

    I’ve never been a fan of Kevin Costner, I always thought he was pompous and self absorbed. But I heard his eulogy on Gawker, and I was really touched. I think it was refreshing to hear him address the issue of race in a funeral in a really comfortable way, and the insecurities that dog so many famous people throughout their lives. I didn’t find it difficult to get through at all.

    And I I may say so on a homosex-ualist blog, he is really holding it together, looks-wise, for a blonde of a certain age. Give it a look. I’m glad I didn’t have to sit through the whole funeral, but I only hope to have such an articulate voice and mind sending me off the mortal coil.

  6. BreckRoy says

    I was also someone who appreciated Costner’s eulogy and thought it struck a perfect tone. It was well received by the friends and family and were the kind of stories I hear at black and military funerals all the time, where eulogies are often told through anecdotes about the person and the deceased. I am not quite sure why people have to snark at someone’s funeral…its a FUNERAL, not a concert, or an awards show, or a n event. Speeches are hastily put together, songs aren’t rehearsed, and the attendees dress to respect, not impress, hopefully. It was televised, because there was public interest (networks could choose to pick it up or not), but only AFTER the family asked for plans for a celebrity filled public memorial to be canceled. People may hate Oprah, or find Dionne Warwick “creepy,” or Alicia Keyes “sounding bad,” or find Kevin Costner unappealing, but at Whitney Houston’s funeral, all that matters is that Whitney and her family love them. There’s a time for everything, and I love me some snarky live blogging and reviews, but not for funerals. I think they should be left alone as long as intentions are basically good.

  7. MarkUs says

    “Judi Dench is the finest actor today.”

    I’d add Maggie Smith to that list. The two together in “A Room With A View” was a joy. Dame Judy recounting her younger racy past and Dame Maggie gasping “Oh, Eleanor!”

  8. Bard says

    The gay twins should be able to craft a workable story, something akin to a “Boston marriage,” that will satisfy their relatives without entirely blowing their cover.

  9. says

    It should be no surprise to anyone that marriage has become a luxury good. It is doled out so sparingly and only to those outside the dole. BTAIM, the stats are true. Both Greg and I have college degrees and did so prior to marriage. We turned to a early-twenties surrogate to carry our son thus she would be counted as one of the 40% of women under 30 having children. She has promised to carry our second child and is of generous heart to do so.

    I love Judi Dench. And its true, most great actresses are of British descent. I bawled my eyes out when Audrey Hepburn passed away and still miss her to this day. I hope we have many more years of greatness from Dame Judith.

  10. says

    The Twin Brothers: I love Prudi’s advice as it is quite rational. I grew up with a set of gay identical twins, both actors, who were known as a sexual couple. Believe they are still together today and their personalities compliment each other. It just seems natural that they would have a special bond, one that you or I wouldn’t have with a non-twin brother. And these are fraternal gay twins so they probably appear to many as a normal gay couple. Family be damned – and the advice on what to tell them was spot on.

    BTW, I have five (str8) brothers and a (gay) sister and have never had a desire for an incestuous relationship with any of them. My brothers often spend more time with my husband and our son then they do with me. And I’m good with that.

  11. uffda says

    OS2GUY-thanks for the Twin Brothers info. So such things happen. Love it. Then I read your own remarkable love story. I hope it’s true but it was good as fiction too.

  12. deanmoore says

    Re: the twins…wow. I think after gay marriage is legalized, gay brothers and sisters will want their relationship validated by having the right to marry…just as the Right has predicted. Right now marriage between a sister and a brother is illegal mainly because of chances that their children will have health problems, but that issue doesn’t get in the way of two brothers or two sisters. They’re two adults in love, who’s to tell them that their relationship is not valid?

  13. finkles2000 says

    Well, I hate to be “that guy,” but I wasn’t really thrilled with the incest story. You can argue all you want that incest is only wrong when it’s straight because of DNA/whatever, but I’m of the mind that incest, whether it’s straight or gay and whether it’s between consensual adults, is wrong. I have to draw the moral line somewhere. And honestly, it’s stories like this that are giving NOM, Santorum, and other hate groups enormous fuel for their fire.

    A college professor was fired for having a consensual incestuous relationship with his daughter — is that a valid relationship too? I felt that relationship was wrong and I feel like the relationship between the two brothers is wrong, too. I just feel that if I’m going to deem straight incest as something that shouldn’t happen, then all incest shouldn’t happen.

    And I get the fantasy of having a twin brother that you can do it with, but there’s a big difference between fantasy and reality, in my opinion.

    Just my two cents . . .

  14. Joseph Singer says

    Finklezoo wrote:

    “Well, I hate to be “that guy,” but I wasn’t really thrilled with the incest story. You can argue all you want that incest is only wrong when it’s straight because of DNA/whatever, but I’m of the mind that incest, whether it’s straight or gay and whether it’s between consensual adults, is wrong. I have to draw the moral line somewhere.”

    And yet you don’t give any reason other than your personal feeling that you think it’s “icky.”

  15. Robert says

    I guess I can see the appeal (although I don’t think I’d partake) of growing up with an identical twin brother and experimenting. But fraternal twins? And then falling in love? I can understand experimenting, but the idea of making out with your brother…I mean…gosh, what a strange story. My gut reaction is that something happened to them when growing up that required them to be THAT dependent on each other and closed off from the outside realm of love. But, see, that’s what the homophobes say about all of us, too. Yikes.

  16. finkles2000 says

    Apologies if this is a double-post, but the system suspiciously ate my last one.

    So, if this were a story about a father/daughter, mother/son, brother/sister, you’d be okay with that?

    I can’t do anything else but be a jerk (there’s some fodder for you) and play the morality card. Just as I believe that marriage between two un-related, consenting adults, regardless of gender or sexual orientation should have the right to get married, I believe that two related adults, regardless of consent, gender, or sexual orientation, should not enter into an incestuous relationship. I can’t say that it’s fine for two brothers, but not fine for a mother and son.

    And yes, I am well aware of the irony that I am invoking an argument that the anti-gay marriage movement invokes, but this is not the same situation. And I’ll say that I’m not trying to offend anyone, that it’s just my belief system, but again — same argument invoked by those who are homophobes but insist they aren’t homophobes. Irony. I get it.

    I won’t comment further, because the cheese apparently stands alone when it comes to incest, and I’d just get berated instead of fostering a dialogue. Such is the internet.

  17. says

    Re: the twins and incest, so called.

    I can see the issue of sex between a male and female brother / sister being a problem…..from the genetic view.
    I cannot see any such problems as between brothers.
    What’s the issue ?

  18. Sonneillon says

    o_o I am frankly shocked. That was actually good advice.

    Finkle, I think the primary concern where parent/child relationships are concerned is that there’s a power dynamic there that calls into question the quality of the child’s consent. With two brothers who are the same age, that dynamic of age-related power doesn’t exist (though I’m not saying there is no power dynamic between them, because I don’t know them). You said you ‘had to draw a moral line somewhere’ and I’m wondering why the moral line is drawn around DNA rather than around consent?

  19. aaron says

    Finkles2000: I’m not going to berate you. I appreciate you posting your thoughts and desire for a respectful conversation. I have a different opinion however. I’m of the opinion that drawing lines about just about any subject tends to obscure some of the nuances of each case. I’m personally not against incestuous relationships simply because they are relationships between related people. I think each case needs to be understood for all its complexity. For example, I do think that one could make an argument that a relationship between a father/daughter or mother/son is much different than a relationship between two brothers because the age difference introduces the possibility of a power differential that should be considered (but as I said, for me, this is not necessarily a place to draw a line without knowing more). For two brothers, it seems the chances of coercion are much less than for a relationship where age may play a role. And I personally don’t have a sense of morals being transgressed. I find it fascinating and want to know more, but for me, I just don’t understand the point of being “against” a relationship like this. It just doesn’t affect me and I think it’s a hard case to show how it really affects anyone else in a serious way, so I say good for them:)

  20. finkles2000 says

    Annnnnd I’m sucked back in. Thank you, Sonneillon, for not insulting me, and rather opening up the discussion. Here’s the way I look at it:

    In the gay marriage fight, we’re fighting for equal rights. Not special rights, EQUAL rights. Two consenting, unrelated, opposite-sex adults can get legally married. That’s exactly what we want — Two consenting, unrelated same-sex adults can get legally married. We don’t want special treatment under the law, just what is equal.

    So, if I argue that a mother/son, father/daughter, brother/sister shouldn’t enter into an incestuous relationship, but it’s fine for two brothers to do so, I’m advocating not for equal rights, but for special rights.

    Anti-gay marriage people use the argument that gay people shouldn’t get married because they cannot produce children. (Which is, to be sure, a lame excuse.) But I cannot ethically use that same-yet-opposite argument to grant two brothers or sisters the rights to incest, while decrying the incest of others. E.g. (i.e.?): Because there is no chance or risk of pregnancy, incest is fine between two same-sex relatives; but since there is a possibility of a pregnancy between two opposite-sex relatives, incest is wrong in that case.

    It’s the same(ish) argument that anti-gay marriage advocates are using. Again, I think it’s wrong across the board, and I have a hard time wrapping my head around why it’s okay for some relatives but not okay for others.

    Oy. I’ve got to go and get on with my day already! Again, Sonneillon, thank you for not insulting me.

  21. jamal49 says

    I watched Mr. Costner’s eulogy at Ms. Houston’s funeral services and did not find his speech boring at all. In fact, considering many of the topics he touched upon in his memories of having worked with Ms. Houston, it was quite a moving and honest memorial. His was also the only one that moved me to tears.

    Dame Judy, I can relate. I am now in the preliminary stages of macular degeneration and it is frustrating and depressing. I am someone who loves books and writing and as it becomes more difficult to be able to see clearly enough to read without constantly trying to refocus my eyes, I find myself getting more and more depressed and discouraged. I feel like I am living the role that Burgess Meredith played in a Twilight Zone episode that as I approach retirement, surrounded by all of my books, I will ironically not be able to read a goddamned one of them!

    As for the fraternal twin brothers who are lovers and life-companions, there are two thoughts: the first is that their love is beautiful and soul-deep and as a believer in reincarnation, I sense they are together because it is their karmic destiny; and the second is now I won’t feel so guilty as I avidly read the sometimes excellent and highly-erotic Wincest fanfics.

  22. Caliban says

    I just hope that celebrity funerals on TV doesn’t become a trend. I saw part of it since a friend insisted on seeing it but the overblown religiosity and speeches by the homophobes like Rev Wayans and “ex-gay” Donnie McClurkin quickly soured me on the whole event. Whitney’s fans are grieving. Fine. But that was nothing but grief-porn and a chance for people to get their face on TV for their own star turn. I’m surprised they weren’t using Whitney’s casket as a place to display CDs.

    And why were they so insistent that no one make photos and recordings, considering the whole spectacle was being broadcast? Did they sell the rights to Whitney’s Funeral™?

    The only advantage I see to broadcasting celebrity funerals is that reality TV “stars” like Kim Kardashian out-do everyone else by rushing to participate in wakes of their very own.

  23. jake says

    Paul R. ‘Corpsing’ is an English actors’ term for breaking up on stage. The English like to try to make each other laugh during the show. I detested it when I worked there.

  24. george F says

    If two people are together in a consensual relationship and are not hurting anybody else-in this case they can’t even procreate- I am all for it then…
    As somebody who has fallen in love with the “wrong” person -wrong by society’s standards that is- I can understand their case…as long as they don’t involve others into their relationship of course…

  25. BobN says

    “something happened to them when growing up that required them to be THAT dependent on each other and closed off from the outside realm of love”

    I think what happened is what the story says. They started fooling around and knew they had to keep their secret. The secret was, I suspect, mostly that they liked sex with boys, not that they liked sex with each other only. Experimentation and sexual contact between siblings and cousins, consensual and not, is more common than people realize. It rarely leads to life-long love.

    Had these boys grown up in a world where desiring another boy wasn’t such a big deal, they both probably would have moved on to boyfriends long before childhood was over. I’m not saying we can be certain of that, of course, but it seems likely.

  26. Joey says

    The twins didn’t say they wanted to get married. They said because marriage equality exists in their state the family wants them to be in a relationship. So I guess being gay isn’t a protection from that kind of pressure anymore. Ah, unexpected consequences. Really kind of funny.

  27. says

    BOBN, i think you’re actually right on the money with that.

    think soberly about the human experience and the factors of sociological pressure, expectation, the fears they come with and the crutches and escapes people use or discover to deal with them.

    many different types of people, in varying stages of their lives, confuse *love* with many other things: protection, concern, codependence, and many other insecurities related to infatuations and obsessions.

    did anyone see that show “my strange addiction” where the guy has a romantic and (apparently) sexual relationship with his car? with his car that he named “Chase”, and refers to with male pronouns? he said he’d tried relationships with girls and just didnt’ feel anything, and his relationship with Chase is more satisfying. we as a species are capable of a lot of projection as a defense and/or security mechanism when we don’t want to deal with something.

    sorry to be Mister Miseryguts who isnt’ all gung-ho about two brothers involved in an incestuous relationship. incest is not an orientation. there’s no doubt in my mind that this isn’t some case of “oh well, if it feels good do it and don’t care what other people think” and much more a case of actually plumbing the legit psychological depths of what has led two men to continue on with something than began when they were younger.

    although frankly i don’t believe the story. and frankly it looks like some people are desperate for it to be true to provide them with some spanking material, which i’m pretty darn convinced was the author’s intention.

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