Archive for November 28th, 2010

Pink Reveals Her Top Baby Name Pick


Pink is head over heels for her husband, motocross racer Carey Hart.

The spirited singer, who is a little over three months pregnant, told Access Hollywood’s Billy Bush that the father of her growing baby definitely knows how to take care of her in her new, more sensitive state.

“Carey brings me breakfast in bed… counting the days until that goes away, but it’s been good,” Pink told Billy, in a recent interview for “The Billy Bush Show.” “Did you see him on [the 2010 American Music Awards] red carpet? God, he looked so good.

“He’s so handsome,” she added.

According to the superstar performer, Carey is not only good-looking — he knows to cater to his often-moody expectant wife.

“He has been so wonderful that it’s making me nervous!” Pink told Billy. “He just does all of it. He does stuff I could even do but just don’t like it. He’s wonderful.”

The Grammy Award-winning singer said that the couple’s impending bundle of joy is a dream come true – especially since previously she had once tragically suffered a miscarriage.

“[Carey] is so excited,” Pink told Billy. “He’s wanted to be a dad since – I mean, we’ve been together nine years on and off, and he brought it up two weeks after we met. So, he’s wonderful.

“He’s going to be a really, really cute daddy,” she added.

One thing the spunky pair doesn’t completely see eye-to-eye on is what to name the new addition to their family.

“We’re all over the place,” Pink told Billy. “I’m all about meaning, and Carey feels like he had a girl’s hair cut and a girl’s name, and he doesn’t want kids to have a weird name.

“I have to get him on the boat for originality, so I’m working on him,” she laughed.

Though the couple has yet to decide on a girl’s name, Pink revealed their top choice for a boy: Jameson.

“My dad’s name is James, and my brother’s name is Jason,” she told Billy. “[Carey and I] are both Irish, Carey’s middle name is Jason, [and] Jameson – we like whiskey. That’s a no brainer.”

As for whether the new mom-to-be will indulge in the doctor-approved occasional glass of wine later in her pregnancy, Pink said she was surprised at her current lack of interest in cocktails.

“You know what? I thought I’d be like that – I couldn’t even comprehend someone not wanting wine,” the “Raise Your Glass” singer told Billy. “But honestly, I just don’t. I don’t want anything bad.”

As previously reported on AccessHollywood.com, Pink confirmed her pregnancy on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” on November 15.

“I’m eating for two these days,” Pink told Ellen at the time, providing her first confirmation that she is pregnant.





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Actor Leslie Nielsen, best known for his film roles in “Airplane” and “The Naked Gun” series, died Sunday of complications from pneumonia, his family said.

Nielsen, 84, died in a hospital near his home in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, surrounded by his wife and friends.

“In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in his name to the charity of your choice,” the family said in a statement.




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The lowest mortgage interest rates in almost 60 years, plus affordable homes in cities where buyers had been priced out for years, should be turning the housing market around. But the market also labors under some heavy burdens: a glut of foreclosures that are dragging downhome prices, high unemployment and tight credit. Sales fell off a cliff after the home-buyer tax credit expired. And “foreclosure-gate” — legal squabbling about the process used to repossess many homes — postponed the sale of many foreclosed properties and struck yet another body blow to confidence in the housing market.

For the four years beginning with the downturn in mid 2006, the median price of an existing home nationwide fell by 27%, or 7.7% annualized, according to Fiserv Case- Shiller, a home-price research firm. (At the worst of the decline, a year ago, prices had fallen 30%.) The median home now sells for $177,000, a bit more than what it would have fetched in 2003.

Among the cities that Fiserv tracks, Merced, Cal., fared worst, with a 68% plunge in its median home price in the four years since the peak, followed closely by Modesto,Salinas and Stockton, Cal.Cape CoralFort Myers, Fla.; and Detroit. Prices rose in just 12 cities — in upstate New YorkTennessee and Pennsylvania— that missed the boom and plugged along at their usual slow pace of appreciation.

Stuck Underwater

The home-price plunge has left 23% of mortgage borrowers (out of 53.5 million) underwater — that is, they owe more on their mortgage than the market value of their home. Unless they can ante up the difference — an average of $75,000, according to CoreLogic, which analyzes mortgage data — they can’t sell and they can’t move. Their choices? Stick it out, ask the lender for permission to sell for less than they owe (a short sale), or default.

In Norwood, Mass., south of Boston, Al and Shannon Becker wish they could buy a bigger home, but they’re underwater by about $50,000. But the couple have a plan. They bought their 1910 farmhouse, with three bedrooms and two baths, for $389,000 in 2005. By 2006, the property appraised for $423,000 and the couple refinanced, taking cash out for home improvements. Now it’s worth $350,000. Still, they can afford to move — and could come up with the cash to pay off the mortgage. Instead, they are paying an extra $500 a month on the second mortgage they took out when they purchased the house and anticipate the day when debt pay-down and home-price growth will converge. Walk away? No. “That would be un-American, and my parents would kill me,” says Al.

The price gains that would put the Beckers and the millions of homeowners like them in the black have been tantalizingly out of reach, though glimmers of hope exist. Median home prices rose by 3.6% during the year ended June 30. Many California cities saw double-digit increases. Prices rose by at least 5% in many cities in California’s beleaguered Central Valley and Inland Empire (such as RiversideSan Bernardino), a few cities in Florida, and in PhoenixWashington, D.C., andMinneapolisSt. Paul.

David Stiff, chief economist at Fiserv Case-Shiller, says those price increases, artificially propelled by the home-buyer tax credit, weren’t sustainable. The tax credit expired on April 30. By June, sales had begun to slide, and in July they tanked. In late summer, sales of existing homes (including single-family houses, townhouses, condos and co-ops) began to climb again, but in the National Association of Realtors’ most recent report, they were still 19% below a year ago. The lower the price tier, the greater the decline in sales, which reflected the pullback of first-time home buyers.

Although this recovery may seem unendurably long, Stiff says that five to seven years is historically a “pretty standard time frame” for prices to stabilize after a large correction. But in the past, some regions suffered longer than others. For example, Dallas home prices took 12 years to recover after they fell from their peak in mid 1986. This time around, however, the downturn hit more areas because the mortgage-credit bubble was so widespread.

The Foreclosure Factor

Now, short sales and foreclosures are the driving force behind continued price declines. Throughout 2010, they accounted for about one-third of home sales, with an average price discount of 26%, according to RealtyTrac. Everyone agrees that more such sales are on the way, but estimates vary.

Moody’s Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi says the foreclosure pipeline holds about four million loans that are delinquent by 90 days or more — or headed that way — and he thinks half of those will end up for sale. He thinks that delinquency rates have peaked and that foreclosures will peak in 2011. He reckons that, given current supply and demand, it will take two years to work through the excess inventory (which is concentrated in Florida, the Atlanta areaArizonaNevada, California’s Central Valley, the Rust Belt and a few other spots in the Midwest). The longer it takes to put to rest the foreclosure-processing issue raised in October, the greater the backlog of properties — and the more they will suppress prices when they hit the market. But Zandi says foreclosure-gate will be resolved within a few months, not a few quarters. Even so, foreclosure moratoriums have ensnared plenty of bargain hunters, including Kerry Deland of St. Cloud, Fla. Deland moved to St. Cloud, near Orlando, in 2005. A kindergarten teacher, Deland quickly figured out that she couldn’t afford to buy a home — especially one with enough land for her horse — on her salary.

A friend tipped her off to a property that appeared destined for foreclosure — a 5-acre spread with a three-bedroom, two-bath house that would have sold for $300,000 in 2005. Deland watched and waited. In July, the foreclosing lender listed the property for $114,000. Deland made two offers. The first time she lost out to a higher bidder, whose deal fell through. In late August, she made a winning bid of $111,900. Closing was scheduled for early November, but in October Deland learned that the seller, Fannie Mae, had imposed a foreclosure moratorium. Fortunately, it offered to extend Deland’s contract until December 5. “I’ve waited this long,” she says. “I can wait some more.”

A Glass Half-Full

The worst-case scenario for home prices? Slow economic growth and high unemployment drive up the foreclosure numbers, which push down home prices. Consumers refrain from spending, further dampening economic growth and job creation. Demand for homes decreases because would-be buyers either don’t have a job or don’t have confidence that they’ll still have one in months to come. Confident buyers hold off because they expect further price declines.

But Zandi thinks the job market will begin to turn around by mid to late 2011. And the Federal Reserve will ensure that mortgages stay dirt-cheap at least until employment picks up again. Zandi says that the best reason for a bit of optimism is this: With few exceptions, the market is fairly valued based on the relationship of home prices to income and apartment rents. Some markets have actually become undervalued, which will attract more buyers and investors.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch economist Michelle Meyer says that to frame the housing outlook in a more optimistic light, “everything has to go as planned.”To buoy consumer confidence and put home sales on a strong, upward trajectory, job growth will have to be considerable and the unemployment rate clearly receding. Meyer agrees that we could see that begin to occur in the second half of 2011, but, she says, “it will be a slow process.” Fiserv expects the housing market to finally hit bottom in mid 2011, with another 7% decline in the U.S. median home price for the year ending June 30, 2011. The firm’s forecasting model says that prices are 90% of the way back to being in line with household incomes. Stiff says that the housing market is now “bouncing along the bottom,” with buyers and sellers creating price volatility as they try to match bid and ask prices. The firm predicts that in many cities, prices will begin to tick upward again in 2012.



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Quote of the Day:

Release anyone & anything that doesn’t support your happiness. Life is too short to tolerate anyone’s B.S

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TV’s Biggest Fall Failures

First came Fox’s “Lone Star,” two low-rated episodes and out. Next was ABC’s “My Generation,” poorly reviewed, poorly received, and gone. The cavalcade of failed new shows that followed was both disappointing and utterly unsurprising.


In an industry propped up by hits, the programming landscape is typically dominated by misses. Roughly 80% of all new shows fail; about a third of this year’s freshman crop won’t even make it past January. Figures like these have driven many to question network television’s costly model, but none to actually alter it. And so it goes, another season of turkeys, as we’ve affectionately dubbed the shows that have already gotten the ax or are dangerously close to it.


[Photos: Take a look at TV’s 12 biggest fall failures.]


Following a 2009 season filled with first-year standouts like “Glee” and “Modern Family,” this year’s incoming class was widely viewed as a letdown from the outset. The offerings were too dull, too narrow, and too unimaginative, and the expectations were lowered accordingly. To date, there aren’t any newcomers among the 10 shows earning the highest ratings this season, according to The Nielsen Company.


“Lone Star” was in many ways the exception. Heading into the fall, the series about a Texas oil conman leading dual lives had all the trappings of a hit: a soapy premise, a breakout star, heavy marketing, and a plum spot behind Fox’s “House.” TV Guide called the show “this fall’s best and most original drama”; The Boston Globe heralded it as the “strongest TV newcomer”; and The New York Times said it was “gratifyingly complex and beautifully told.”


But viewers didn’t tune in. On premiere night, the drama nabbed only 4.1 million viewers and a 1.3 rating among the all-important 18- to 49-year-old set, figures so abysmal even a top cable network couldn’t crow about them. Some blamed the show’s unforgivable plot lines about cons and adultery; others faulted its hard-to-define premise and hardly explanatory title. Despite an aggressive “Please Don’t Kill My TV Show!” campaign by creator Kyle Killen, the show fared even worse in week two, leaving Fox little choice but to pull the plug.


[Photos: See how all the new shows are doing on our fall TV report card.]


Similarly short-lived series like ABC’s “My Generation” or NBC’s “Outlaw” didn’t have the benefit of critical praise on their side. The former was called “trite,” “forced,” and “insufferable”; the latter drew adjectives like “mediocre,” “improbable,” and “clumsy.” “My Generation” was canceled after two little-watched episodes; the remaining shows are running online. The end of “Outlaw” was announced after four episodes, the rest to be burned off on the TV wasteland known as Saturday night.


Still, other newcomers are simply limping along. Among them: NBC’s “The Event,” which has seen fan interest and ratings tumble over the past couple of months. Coming out of the gate strong with more than 11 million viewers in September, the high-concept series billed as “‘Lost‘ meets ‘24‘” has been hemorrhaging viewers ever since. Recent episodes have averaged fewer than 6 million viewers, and the network recently announced plans to pull the series for three months beginning in December.


Brad Adgate, director of research at Horizon Media, remains hopeful, noting that the networks have a slew of midseason shows coming early next year, including Fox’s “The Chicago Code” and NBC’s “Harry’s Law” and “The Cape.” He likens their potential to that of last season’s “Undercover Boss,” a midseason series that broke out big on CBS earlier this year.



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Two faves mashed up LMFAO:


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Hello/Goodbye, The Arctic Circle

photo from national geographic:

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