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    UPTOWN_amex_lounge_made_fashion_week

    This February, American Express returned to MILK Studios in New York for MADE Fashion Week. The American Express VIP Card Member Lounge not only offered card holders access to the Fall 2015 runway shows, but also provided meet and greet sessions with some of the top designers in the fashion business. These intimate talks with fashion visionaries were hosted by TV personality and dapper gent Micah Jesse. Plus, DryBar ensured that all card members would look their best before the shows with complementary hairstyling.

    UPTOWN_cushnie_et_ochs

     

    On a basic level, the American Express VIP Card Member Lounge is a place to escape the frenzy of New York Fashion Week, while grabbing a delectable bite and a bit of bubbly, but even more than that, it provides a once in a lifetime opportunity for people who can’t live without fashion. The only thing better than being able to experience the live runway show of a favorite designer is having the opportunity to speak with that designer right after debuting his/her latest collection. Trust, I was in awe as Cushnie et Ochs presented the Fall 2015 collection and enjoyed designers Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs’ talk afterwards. They explained how they design clothes for women’s bodies and they enjoy seeing their garments on a woman with body — boobs, breasts, and hips. It was also refreshing to know that fashion isn’t always magical. Ochs and Cushnie revealed that a fire occurred in the building where their showroom is located just hours before the models were due to hit the runway. These are tidbits the average fashion lover wouldn’t learn without access to the AMEX lounge.

    Although MADE Fashion Week is winding down now, I suggest you call up American Express to see how you can enjoy the fun for MADE Fashion Week Spring 2016, which occurs in September.

    RELATED: Beauty Picks From Cushnie et Ochs


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    UPTOWN_adrian_peterson

    The 7-year-old son of former Chicago Bears running back Adrian Peterson is saying goodbye to his oldest child after losing his battle with cancer on Tuesday. Peterson, (not to be confused with Minnesota Viking Adrian Peterson) announced on a GoFundMe page that A.J. Peterson, the oldest of four children, was given only a five to nine percent survival rate.

    Peterson wrote on his Facebook page:

    “#Ajsoars is in Heaven, where he belongs…#ajsoars #P3 #MyFirstSuperHero”

    A.J. was diagnosed with brain cancer at age six, last June. The site raised close to $40,000 for expensive medical costs. Before his death, A.J.’s dreams of becoming a police officer came true thanks to The Make A Wish Foundation. The foundation arranged for him to be sworn in as an honorary Round Lake Police officer.

    Peterson was a star running back for Georgia Southern from 1998-2001, and played for the Chicago Bears from 2002-2009. Peterson also had brief stints with the Minnesota Vikings and the Virginia Destroyers.


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    taye diggs single urban dads

    Contrary to the popular stereotype, not all Black fathers are deadbeat dads, and Taye Diggs is working on a new TV series to inform the world about men who love, cherish, and provide for their children.

    Taye, who has seemingly gotten his groove back after divorcing his wife Idina Menzel of 10 years in 2013, considers himself a single father now, an experience he’s been chronicling on Twitter with his Single Urban Dads account.

    It started out as a support group, but Taye is planning to take it to another level with a reality show that shines the spotlight on dedicated dads, like himself, who may not be husbands, but are excellent fathers.

    “You hear so much about single mothers. You don’t hear a lot about single fathers and especially coming from being African American. Black, single fathers don’t get any credit whatsoever,” he recently told Access Hollywood.

    Rapper Nelly also represents for single dads on his reality TV show, “Nellyville,” on which he’s raising his children and those of his deceased sister. Before the premiere of his BET show, the “Hot in Herre” artist said, “I’m doing a reality show, more or less, because I feel, at this point, what we don’t see is single fathers that are doing what they’re supposed to do, that are raising their kids the right way.”

    Celebrity Capricorns: Taye Diggs

    The assumption that Black fathers abandon their children is a pervasive one that even many minorities cling to, even though their own lives might not support the claim.

    In 2010, CNN newsman Don Lemon, while offering the statistic that more than 70 percent of Black moms aren’t married, immediately followed that bit of info with his own conclusion that unwed “means absent fathers.”

    In his inference, Lemon, who shared in his bio Transparent that he was raised by a man who was not married to his mother, also failed to account for step-fathers who care for other men’s children.

    That’s a misconception that Taye intends to tackle; although, he plans to do so from behind the camera and feature non-celebrity fathers on the show, titled Single Urban Dads.

    “It’s always assumed that the father is out of the picture, the father’s a bum and I’m out there to say that I know a lot of cats out there who are doing a great job,” he said.


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    uptown_warren_sapp_2015

    More information has been released on the arrest of Hall of Fame football player Warren Sapp. He was arrested in Arizona after Super Bowl weekend, and worked as a correspondent for the NFL. Sapp was arrested that Monday, Feb. 2, for soliciting a prostitute. He is also charged with assault.

    A police report stating that there were two prostitutes arrested along with Sapp at a Renaissance Hotel in Downtown Phoenix. The three first at the hotel’s bar. The women, 23-year-old Britney Osborne and 34-year-old Quying Boyd, told Sapp that they were Las Vegas strippers. He invited them back to his room to strip for him.  Sapp reportedly threw $100 bills at the women as they danced.

    Afterward, Sapp allegedly offered the women $300 each to perform a sexual act on him. According to the The Arizona Republic, only the youngest escort agreed. She performed oral sex on Sapp, and the former athlete recorded it and took pictures on his cell phone, which he later showed to police.

    The report says that Osborne hid in the bathroom until she heard the younger woman and Sapp arguing. She was allegedly asking him for more money to have intercourse with him, but he refused.

    One of the women reportedly spit in Sapp’s face before he physically pushed them out of his hotel room. After the ordeal, one of the women allegedly had bruises on her arm and shoulders, while the other prostitute’s legs were swollen.

    “I do what I do, but that doesn’t give him the right to put his hands on me,” Osborne told police.

    After his arrest, the NFL fired Sapp as an analyst.

    Osborne is being charged with prostitution, while Boyd was cited with failure to register as an escort. She had been arrested previously for grand larceny in New York after stealing from her wealthy customers.

    Sapp is expected back in court Monday.


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    Oscars

    It’s Oscars season. Fashion reporters are finalizing their red carpet predictions. Audiences are flocking to see all the nominated films before Sunday’s big event; and as tradition would have it, we are asking that same old question: where are all the Black movies?

    In 1940, Hattie McDaniel became the first Black actress to win an Oscar for her role as a servant in Gone With the Wind. She accepted that award in a segregated Los Angeles ballroom full of her acting peers. In the 75-year history of The Academy Awards, just 15 Black actors have taken home the Oscar. The diversity issue in Hollywood has never been a secret, yet we still bask in the rare, interspersed moments where a room full of Hollywood’s elite stands to applaud a Brown face and debate whether or not the Academy has made progress in recognizing Black talent. Isn’t it time we stop allowing mainstream to be our gauge of success and just…finally… celebrate us?

    Kanye West, who famously disagrees with Grammy decisions that don’t favor Beyoncé, admitted that winning mainstream awards is considered a greater achievement than being recognized by the NAACP or BET. “It carries more weight if you win a Grammy than if you win a BET Award,” he told Power 105.1 radio. “Grammys is a statement of class.”

    Uptown_MoNiqueOscar-winner Mo’Nique has stated the opposite. The Precious actor told Roland Martin, “It’s unfair when we overlook ours and we put all of this on [the Oscar]…We jump for joy to say, ‘Another one of us got it,’ but I don’t remember the phone calls I received when I got nominated for the Image Award. I don’t remember the big powerhouse Black folks calling me up and saying, ‘Baby, you got the Image Award.’ Now, when I got that Oscar award, that nomination, I got calls from everybody.”

    Maybe the reason some of us put so much stock into Black actors and films winning Oscars is because we’re unfamiliar with how the selection process works. So let’s take a look at how it all goes down and who is really pulling the strings. Oscar winners are decided by members of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences – all of whom work in or are affiliated with the film business. Most categories are nominated by members of the corresponding branch, meaning actors nominate other actors, directors other directors, etc… After initial rounds of voting, a nominee is determined by popular selection and eventually, there is a final vote to select a winner from the nominees.

    Now, here’s where it gets weird. According to a 2012 Los Angeles Times investigation, the 6,000-plus membership of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences was found to be 94 percent White and 77 percent male. The Academy’s demographics are grotesquely non-reflective of the general U.S. population. Not to mention that Blacks and Hispanics combined only garnered 15 percent of speaking characters in top-grossing U.S. box office films in 2013, yet studies have found them to be the most frequent movie-goers (according to a USC study on racial inequlity in film).

    The numbers lead us right back to what we already know. Minorities are underrepresented amongst the voting body, which, to no surprise, means minority films, filmmakers and actors seldom win Oscars. Is this by design? Well, that’s a loaded question. There are countless factors at play, including stubborn tradition by old, out-of-touch movie tycoons steadily being replaced. One thing is for sure…it’s time to stop valuing mainstream recognition more than our own. It is time to stop worshipping at the feet of big business, hoping that the familiar cultural nuances that give us a sense of belonging and enjoyment will see a glimpse of mainstream praise, one night of the year. What actors, script writers, directors, producers and the like all do is art, and art is subjective. So why do we, as a culture, put the validity of Black art in the hands of a faceless, nameless voting population that we know nothing about, and that knows nothing about us?

    If it helps, think about why you go to the movies in the first place. To laugh, to cry, to feel connected, to be frightened, to become intrigued, taken on a journey of perspective…to feel. Think about the last movie that succeeded in drawing those emotions out of you, reminding you of your culture, of your humanity. That golden statue doesn’t seem so important after all, does it?


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    Uptown_The-Dream-Breakfast-Club

    Many fans have been giving the side-eye to the new relationship between Lil Wayne and Christina Milian, as she is the ex-wife and mother of The-Dream‘s daughter. The situation raises even more eyebrows as Weezy’s ex-girlfriend and mother of one of his children happens to be Nivea, who is also The-Dream’s ex-wife and mother of his children.

    Some have been wondering why it looks as though the two men seem to just exchange partners, but apparently that’s not the case, as the R&B singer clarified during his sit-down with The Breakfast Club radio show.

    When asked about finding out the news of Christina and Wayne’s relationship, Dream revealed that it was actually Wayne who called him up to have a conversation about it.

    The Dream

    “We had one conversation. We don’t have conversations about having the same taste. I didn’t say ‘why’ anything. I don’t ask people why they do [certain things]. Everybody is grown. Do whatever you want to do. I don’t laugh about it. It just is what it is,” he said. “He put in a phone call to me. Just being a gentleman. I wouldn’t do that to him [but] we’re two different personalities.”

    Wayne’s exes Nivea and Toya Wright have previously expressed their dislike of the situation.

    “I just thought it was very, very crazy,” Nivea said in September. “I don’t condone this.”

    Weezy’s ex-wife agreed. “I think it’s a hot mess if you want my honest opinion,” Toya said. “There are too many other women out there to date your son’s mother ex-husband girl. It’s just too much.”


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    UPTOWN_style_stalking_022015

    From NYC to LA, whether on the fashion scene or a Hollywood red carpet, many celebrities showed off their fashion skill this week. Many pulled out furs to fiercely face the freezing temps, while others got our minds on the warm days ahead, with winter white and bright colors or prints. So if the frigid weather has you feeling uninspired and throwing style to the whirling wind, then chill, because the following celebs are serving up serious inspiration. Here are 10 celebs who fabulously shined this week.

    Uptown_style_stalking1_Aja_Naomi_King

    Aja Naomi King shows how to get away with style, in her bold pink dress at the Vanity Fair and FIAT celebration of Young Hollywood.

    Uptown_style_stalking2_Journee_Smollett

    Journee Smollett looks gorgeous in a full A-line belted dress at the 2015 Essence Black Women in Hollywood Awards event.


    Uptown_style_stalking3_Naya_Rivera

    After wrapping up a segment on “The View,” Naya Rivera bundles up in chic white fur.

    Uptown_style_stalking4_Christina_Milian

    Christina Milian lightened up on a bitter cold day with a pastel-hued coat over her black dress for the Michael Costello fashion show.

    Uptown_style_stalking5_Porsha_Williams

    Reality star Porsha Williams, topped off a simple black and white look with a black fur and bold Hermès Birkin bag at the Vivienne Tam fashion show.


    Uptown_style_stalking6_Tessa_Thompson

    SELMA actress Tessa Thompson attends the Giulietta fashion show in a modern floral print pants set.

    Uptown_style_stalking7_Common

    Oscar-nominated artist Common accents his burgundy suit with subtle neutral pieces to the 12th Annual Global Green Pre-Oscar party.

    Uptown_style_stalking8_Tia_Mowry_Hardrict

    Tia Mowry-Hardrict adds her ladylike finesse to a menswear-inspired jumpsuit for the 2015 Essence Black Women in Hollywood Awards event.

    Uptown_style_stalking9_Tamron_Hall

    NBC correspondent Tamron Hall attended Naomi Campbell‘s Fashion For Relief Charity Fashion Show in a sizzling white jumpsuit.


    Uptown_style_stalking10_Taraji_P_Henson

    The Empress Taraji P. Henson looked lovely in her floral print sheath dress at the Bibhu Mohapatra fashion show.


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    uptown_winslowe_aderotimi

    Philadelphia-based illegal plastic surgeon Padge Victoria Windslowe is now standing trial for murdering a woman in 2011 after filling her buttocks with low-grade silicone and finishing off the procedure with Krazy Glue.

    A 20-year-old dancer and British tourist, Claudia Aderotimi, had attended one of Windslowe’s pumping parties and underwent the procedure for a bigger butt.  After Windslowe was finished with the surgery, Aderotimi had trouble breathing and died the same day in a Philadelphia hospital.

    Windslowe, who is transgender and goes by the moniker “Black Madam,” said that her procedures were very popular in the Philadelphia area and that most people were satisfied with her work. She claims she is so good at sculpting the perfect backside that she is called “the Michelangelo of buttocks injections.”

    “A lot of people came to me,” she said to the judge. “My work spoke for itself.”

    “God’s blessed my hands with everything I touch. I make lots of money, in lots of ways,” she boasted on Thursday.

    One of Windslowe’s former clients is set to testify against the 45-year-old deadly practitioner. This patient was hospitalized for two weeks after the silicone injected inside of her spread to her lungs. Windslowe’s silicone of choice is typically used to lubricate machines and is also used to make cars and military tanks, according to Assistant District Attorney Carlos Vega. It is not safe for use in medical practices.

    In addition to being charged with third-degree murder, the faux doctor is being charged with aggravated assault and practicing medicine without a license.  She faces 20 to 40 years in prison if convicted for the murder charge, and additional years if convicted of the rest.

    Windslowe is also expected to defend herself in court.  “More than anything in the world, I want to get up there and I want to talk,” she said Thursday. “The most important thing is to put Claudia’s mother at peace by speaking.”

    The trial may last several weeks.

     


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     Uptown_Kim-Kardashian-North-Mother

    Kim Kardashian is following in the footsteps of her husband Kanye West a little bit, as she posted, or better yet reposted, a rant on her Instagram page. The photo is of a long rant about a mom having the hardest job in the world as she provides for and raises her child, and Kim made sure everyone knew how much she agreed.

    The original post read, “I can’t stand it when people say, ‘You’re JUST a mom?’ Yes, I am a Mom! That makes me an alarm clock, cook, maid, waitress, teacher, nurse, referee, handyman, security officer, photographer, counselor, chauffeur, event planner, Hairdresser, personal assistant, ATM & I scare away the boogie man. I don’t get paid holidays, sick pay or days off. I work DAY & NIGHT. I am on call 24/7 for the rest of my life. That’s just BEING A MOM!!! I may not be anything to you, but I am everything to someone!! Re-post if you’re a proud mom, that would do ANYTHING on this planet for their child.”

    After facing some criticism following her daughter North West’s tantrums at two different fashion shows during NYFW, Kim shut down the talk of her not being a good mother. She captioned the photo, “I saw this on IG & love it so I’m reposting it! Shoutout to all of the moms out there! Hardest, most rewarding & best job in the entire world!!! This couldn’t be more true! #ProudMom.”


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    kevin, Eniko

    (Image: The YBF)

    Kevin Hart has lots on his plate these days. For one, he’s doing press rounds for his new films The Wedding Ringer and Get Hard. He’s also gearing up for his “What Now” world comedy tour that kicks off on March 27, and will be hosting the Comedy Central’s roast of Justin Beiber. But none of that has kept him from tackling wedding plans with his fiancee Eniko Parrish.

    Hart called into Paris Nicole’s 92.1 morning show to confirm that the couple has tentatively booked Summer 2016 to tie the knot. No word yet on where the nuptials will take place, but it’s safe to say it will be a lavish affair. Now that they’ve survived the storm of controversy surrounding their engagement, it’s nice to hear they’re happily moving forward,

    Check out the full interview below:


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    ifwt_Kim-Porter-x-Revolt-TV

    Former model and mother to three of Sean “Diddy” Combs’ kids, Kim Porter, has struck a deal with REVOLT TV for a new show titled, The ’90s: We Invented This in honor of Black History Month. The show will be hosted by Kim along with famous radio personality Ed Lover. Kenny Burns, SVP of REVOLT TV, confirmed the show via social media today, and Kim took to Instagram to express her excitement about the show. “TODAY WAS A GOOD DAY!!  Thanks to everyone at REVOLT for making it happen!!!…stay tuned!!”

    Though their on-again-off-again relationship has fizzled out, Kim and Diddy have maintained a friendly relationship and have supported each other’s professional ventures throughout the years. So it comes as no surprise that Diddy would pull some strings to create this avenue for Kim.

    The show will premiere on February 28, at 7 p.m. EST on REVOLT TV.


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    Kanye breakfast club

    Kanye West sat down with The Breakfast Club radio show recently for a lengthy interview discussing everything from Amber Rose to Beyoncé to his sister-in-law Kylie Jenner’s relationship with Tyga.

    Amber’s recent slamming of the Kardashians came up in the discussion. Kanye didn’t directly comment on Amber’s viral verbal exchanges with Khloe Kardashian, but made his allegiances clear. He’s Team Kardashian. “[Amber] is just soaking in the moment. If Kim dated me when I first wanted to be with her, there wouldn’t be an Amber Rose,” he said.

    When asked if Kim had been sending him nude photos while he was in a relationship with Amber, he replied, “I wish! It’s hard for a woman to want to be with someone that’s with Amber Rose. So she wasn’t sending me nothing. I had to take 30 showers before I got with Kim.” Ouch.

    Kanye also commented on his very vocal support of Beyoncé, which sometimes comes at the expense of other artists. He explained why he’s so adamant about defending her, but suggested that it’s really not about the “Drunk In Love” singer.
    UPTOWN_beyonce_jayz_kanye

    “It’s really ironic that everytime it’s Beyoncé, for some reason. Sometimes it’s like, ‘Why don’t I go off on whoever is going at my wife on Twitter?’ I think Beyoncé is the perfect representation of an artist working hard, trying her best and getting the results from it. She delivered something everyone loved. She’s rich; respect to Hov, she’s a beautiful woman. She’s talented. People figure she doesn’t need anything else, but I think she needs the proper accolades because she’s an inspiration.”

    Other noteworthy takeaways from Kanye’s interview:

    – He admits that he hadn’t heard Beck’s album before hopping on stage at the Grammy’s, but that it’s actually really good.

    – He thinks Tyga is “smart” for getting with Kylie early and that they’re closer in age than most couples he knows.

    – He says Beyoncé and Kim do get along, and that there’s a photo of Kim in Beyoncé’s studio.

    – He defends Kim’s nude Paper Magazine cover, saying it’s not illegal to be naked.

     


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    In these extremely tough economic times, the one topic that has dominated many relationship conversations, on and offline, has become dating someone with potential versus dating someone who is already professional and financially established. Whenever this conversation rears its sometimes ugly head, both sides dig in with emotionally charged, yet valid, ideals. This topic has recently come back in full-force on social media after Tia Mowry-Hardict‘s husband, Cory Hardrict, admitted that he was dead-broke when they met, while she was doing far-better with her Sister, Sister money.

    UPTOWN_tia_mowry_cory_hardrict

    During heated debates on this issue, when one side brings up the old-school moral tenets of building something with someone you love regardless of where they may presently be in their life, the opposition will point to the concept that it’s stupid to date someone solely based on what they may turn out to be. Both sides are right to an extent, but there is a very simple point that most people miss when we have this discussion: All potential is not created equal. And that’s what every woman should know about dating a man with potential, and vice versa.

    Since my homegirls frequently ask me about dudes they’re considering dating based on his ambitions, I will address women looking for quality men in this specific article. The truth is, some men have a ton of actualized potential that is being put to quality use, and some men have a ton of potential that is being virtually wasted day-in and day-out. Some men have a small amount of potential, with clear-cut, easily defined goals that could be executed if he stays on track and gets the right breaks. Other men have a small amount of potential but are so constantly lost in dreaming, that they are unable to put their ideas in any realistic order. Essentially, there are different levels of plausibility that defines the nature of a man’s dreams and goals, and there are a few ways that a woman can successfully vet men who can only dream versus those who have success within realm of possibility.

    1. Multitasking

    It definitely takes extreme determination to reach any goal in life, but if you are looking to date a man who is hellbent on fulfilling his dreams, it is important to see what he does to sustain himself in the mean time. Obviously, every man you meet will have a different financial reality and entertain different lifestyles, but knowing that a man clearly understands the difference between want he wants to do, and what he needs to do is important. The one truism about 99 percent of the people on this planet is that we will experience financial ups and downs. Being with someone who can multitask and divide time between their absolute responsibilities and creating the life they want to lead, is of the utmost importance.

    2. Meticulous

    In life, there are two lanes most of us can take: The road most traveled or the unbeaten path. Most people who pursue goals that are personally important to them can find themselves taking the latter, which requires an extreme ability to plan ahead, because it’s damn near impossible to be filly cognizant of all the potential pitfalls that may encounter. Truthfully, planning is an important part of life no matter what you choose to do, but when you decide to step out on faith and pursue a dream, you need to turn your painstaking accuracy up to another level. Any man can say he wants XYZ, but if he doesn’t have any plan on how to get from A to B, then he’s probably gonna waste a lot of his time — and yours too.

    3. Focused Passion

    The reason I didn’t label this ability simply as “passionate” is because passion can be a liar sometimes. It’s awesome to see someone care deeply about something, but many of us have encountered people who are passionate about a lot of things at the same time — and that can be very dangerous. The one thing you don’t want to do is find a man who constantly changes his goals without even executing all the steps. While there’s nothing wrong with going with the flow and making slight alterations to your goals as you proceed through life, there’s a lot of problems with dudes who jump from goal to goal without having the focus to see one through to the end. A man with focused passion is the type of guy that you can count on to wake up every morning and do what he needs to do to make his goals a reality.

    Hopefully, these three skills will provide insight when you’re thinking about dating a man with potential, but there’s one important addendum that needs to be added to this article. If you don’t love everything he is right now, it’s pointless to date him with the belief that you will fully love him when he becomes who you want him to be. That’s unfair to him, but most importantly it’s unfair to YOU. Date the man you want based on who and what he is today, and if you can reasonably assess that he’s serious and determined about achieving his goals, then let that be the cherry on the cake when and if it happens. If you are uncomfortable with who and what he is today, the worst thing you could do is hang around hoping he magically morphs into everything you’ve ever dreamed.

    LAB

    Lincoln Anthony Blades blogs daily on his site ThisIsYourConscience.com, he’s an author of the book “You’re Not A Victim, You’re A Volunteer” and a weekly contributor for UPTOWN Magazine. He can be reached via Twitter @lincolnablades and on Facebook at This Is Your Conscience.


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    uptown alicia quarles

    For this month’s awards season madness, there is a 1000% chance the best dispatches will come from butter-voiced E! News correspondent Alicia Quarles. The New York-based dynamo is spending February getting all the “she wore,” “he wore,” “say what now?” moments in Los Angeles. She just finished testing legions of extreme beauty treatments for her E! special A-List Beauty Secrets. Here, she talks tipples and other extras.

    uptown kendall jackson chardonnay

    What is in your home bar?

    I always have chardonnay. Kendall Jackson. I know if you’re a wine connoisseur you’ll look down your nose at me, but I don’t care. I love chardonnay, so I keep that in there. And then we always have red wine. My husband’s a gin drinker— Beefeater. I’m a vodka drinker. I like Tito’s. So we make martinis. And then I like a good bottle of champagne. You gotta have Veuve—because life is for celebrating.

    uptown martini

    Your martini style?

    Stirred. I use dry vermouth. And I like mine really dirty, with blue cheese-stuffed olives. If you wanna switch it up, you can buy the jalapeno stuffed olives…bring a little flavor to it.

    uptown mandarin oriental

    Hubby’s and your fave places for a drink and small bites?

    He works downtown so we’ll go to Dead Rabbit, which I believe is the oldest bar in the city. I love, love, love the Mandarin Oriental. Yeah the drinks are expensive, but you don’t get that view of New York anywhere else. It makes you feel like you’ve done something right in life.

    In between all the L.A. red carpets, where will you spend off -duty time?

    I love Katsu-ya, which is a sushi place on 3rd. And then I’ll go to Sunset Tower Hotel—they have the best mixologists there and they make such good martinis. You go [to] people watch, everyone looks like The Hills. One of my favorite things to do while in L.A. is to get pampered at one of the spas in Koreatown. If you are shy, these are not the places for you. Basically, you strip down and indulge in all kinds of baths and scrubs, but they are communal.

    What are your other extra curriculars?

    Raising awareness for MedGift.com and continuing the legacy of being a patient advocate on behalf of my best friend, [and MedGift founder] Diem Brown [who] passed away in November after battling ovarian cancer. The website is a destination where patients can register for everything you probably don’t think of, unless you are ill: ranging from money toward medical bills to arranging for someone to take care of their animals.

    By Chrystal Parker | Photo by: Andrew Werner


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  • 02/21/15--11:14: VH1 Reality Star Dies
  • After a long battle with colon cancer, VH1 reality star of “Real Chance Of Love” and “I Love New York” Ahmad Givens has passed away. The passing of Ahmad, more famously known as Real, was announced by his former co-star and brother Chance Saturday morning.

    chance 3

    Chance posted a photo of his tears along with a heartfelt message on his Instagram. The captions reads, “Bye to my favorite guy in this whole world be in peace we love you forever bro I’ll see you one day soon we shall dance again in God’s kingdom forever and ever bro words can’t describe my pain world pray for me!”

    chance1

    Chance and his brother started as reality star contestants on the famed VH1 show “I Love New York”. The brother duo went by the name of The Stallionaires as they confessed their love on national television. Later the two starred in their own show “Real Chance of Love”. After much success, in 2013 Ahmad was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer.  Using Instagram, he was able to keep fans abreast of how his treatment and recovery was going. Through surgeries, chemotherapy treatments and routine checkups, Real remained an open book and shared his journey with those who followed him.

    Real’s brother shared with TMZ that Ahmad’s health condition only got worse once he fell early this year. Since the fall he has been bedridden and unable to walk around. On Friday Real was having trouble with his vision and speech. His family and friends realized that he didn’t have a lot of time left. He passed away hours later.

    R.I.P Ahmad Givens.


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    UPTOWN_sophia_white_snow

    What’s a granddad to do when his granddaughter has memorized Frozen and is obsessed with having a blizzard of her own, but lives in an area where snow rarely falls? He makes her wish happen, of course.

    Twice this season, Allen Queen has driven a truck bed-full of snow from Pawtucket, Rhode Island to his granddaughter Sophia White in Glen Burnie, Maryland, which is outside Baltimore. The plan came together when Sophia’s mom Nicole called up Queen, lamenting how much Sophia wanted to experience snow.

    “I said I wish I could just teleport her up to you so she could at least just build a snowman,” said Nicole to CBSNews.com. “That’s all she’s been wanting to do is build a snowman.”

    Queen said the more he considered the situation, he got the idea to bring the snow to Sophia instead of the other way around. “So the more I thought about it, it’s like, you know what – I could do it,” he said.

    [Image: CBS]

    Twice, Queen has driven more than 750 miles round trip to surprise his granddaughter with snow.

    “At first she didn’t get it,” said Queen to CBSNews.com. “She didn’t really know what it was – but then when she shoveled some out and she saw it and started playing with it – then it hit her.”

    Queen plans to make this a tradition for Sophia, because as he says, “That’s what grandparents do. It’s in the contract.”

    Source


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    chris-brown-tygaThings continue to heat up this week as Chris Brown and Tyga promote their new mixtape, Fan Of A Fan 2. As you may already know, Tyga has been making headlines after Amber Rose threw shade on The Breakfast Club and called out the “Faded” rapper for his relationship with 17-year-old Kylie Jenner.

    Now its the boys time to talk. The two collaborators stopped by Hot 97 to talk about everything from Amber Rose, their high profile relationships and their mutual dislike for Drake. Per usual, things got intense quick. Read excerpts from the interview below.

    On beefing with Drake:
    Chris Brown admitted to have been sipping on Hennesy before the Hot 97 interview. When it came time to speak on Drake, the bad boy crooner turned up and had a lot to say, “We not getting no check from talking about dude. We giving him a lot of pub. We us. I can’t keep making these muthf***as famous. I’m responsible for a lot of reviving of careers, even right now, I’m making him hot right now”. He then went on to imitate Drake making sure to use a soft voice.

    Tyga on his relationship with Kylie:
    Tyga was asked about his relationship with the 17-year-old along with the highly controversial Instagram photo he shared of Kylie Jenner with the caption, “You’re beauty never goes unnoticed. One of the best/dopest person in my life.” Tyga explains why he decided to post such an open message to his alleged girlfriend. He had this to say, “I do it for myself. I speak what’s in my heart. If I love her and love her as a person, then that’s me. Nobody else has to deal with that.”

    Chris Brown on Amber Rose’s comments about Tyga and Kylie:
    Tyga was also asked about his feelings on Amber Rose’s comments about his alleged relationship with Kylie Jenner. Before he could answer, Chris Brown interjected saying, “Nobody should speak on nobody else situation. If you’re going to try and speak up for somebody else then you shouldn’t be speaking anyway because they should be bold enough to say what they have to say.”

    Hmmm interesting… Watch the full interview on the next page.


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    kerry-2The 2015 Spirit Awards, an award ceremony that celebrates independent filmmakers, is being held Saturday night. Some of the brightest stars in Hollywood showed up to give out awards and show off their red carpet style. This year’s red carpet buzzed with Hollywood it girls like Kerry Washington to powerhouse moguls like Oprah Winfrey.

    Check out our gallery of the very best looks from the 2015 Spirit Awards red carpet.


    kerry-washington
    Kerry Washington looks fresh and classic in a black long-sleeved dress.

    oprah
    Mogul Oprah Winfrey looks effortless with a neutral toned flowy skirt with matching blouse. She shows off her curves by adding a staple belt around her waist.

    common
    Oscar nominated artist Common has never looked fresher in a perfectly tailored two-piece suit.

    ava-duvernay
    Selma‘s director Ava DuVernay hit the red carpet in a gorgeous floor-length floral skirt which she paired with a structured brightly colored blazer.

    david-oyelowo-jessica
    David Oyelowo brought his wife Jessica along for the 2015 Spirit Awards. He took a bright approach to his look and opted for a head-to-toe baby blue suit.

    andre-3000
    Andre 3000 showed off his personal style in a pair of overalls and green military outerwear.
    aja-naomi-king
    How To Get Away With Murder actress Aja Naomi King looked brighter than ever in a simple yellow frock.


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    sad-khloe-kardashianWhile driving around the icy roads of Bozeman, Montana Saturday afternoon, Khloe Kardashian drove her black Yukon GMC right into a ditch while Kim, North West and Kylie Jenner were on board.

    According to TMZ, Khloe was skidding and sliding on an ice-covered road when out of nowhere a semi-truck drove by her car causing a lot of snow to hit the windshield. Khloe became temporarily blinded. She began swerving and drove over a huge chunk of black ice. The car spun violently out of control, crossing oncoming traffic. The reality star eventually landed in a ditch.

    Two cops arrived to the scene of the accident. Word is no one was harmed during the incident. Khloe’s car even pulled through the accident without a scratch. According to Montana officials, this car incident is among many that have occurred as a result of poor road conditions in the area.

    Kim posted a photo hinting at the what could have been tragic incident. The caption reads, “Thank you God for watching over us and keeping us safe.”

    kim

    This accident comes two weeks after Bruce Jenner’s fatal car crash resulting in the death of a driver involved.


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    solange-1The 2015 Academy Awards are going down this Sunday and Hollywood’s biggest stars and movies are being honored for their contributions to the film world this year. When you’re at the grandest celebration in Hollywood, you have to dress the part. From Oscars house DJ Solange Knowles who was radiant in all-red-everything to the gem-covered Jennifer Lopez, celebrities came out to stunt and steal the show.

    Take a look at our gallery for the sexiest and most glamorous red carpet looks of the night.


    lupita-nyong'o
    Lupita Nyong’o


    viola-davis
    Viola Davis

    kerry-washington
    Kerry Washington

    oprah
    Oprah Winfrey

    david-oyelowo
    David Oyelowo

    octavia spencer
    Octavia Spencer

    jennifer-hudson
    Jennider Hudson

    solange-3
    Solange

    rita-ora
    Rita Ora

    chrissy-teigen
    Chrissy Teigen

    zoe-saldana
    Zoe Saldana

    lady-gaga
    Lady Gaga

    jennifer lopez
    Jennifer Lopez

    zendaya
    Zendaya

    will.i.am
    Will.i.am


    common
    Common


    gina-roodriguez
    Gina Rodriguez


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