Home > Bravo's Producer-Driven Scripted Drama, Duck Dynasty, Exploitation of Children, Jim Marchese Explains RHONJ Production Tricks, Reality TV is Fake > Jim Marchese Explains RHONJ Production Tricks; Court Document Proves ‘Real Housewives’ Producers and Cast Stage Scenes; Simon Barney Told the Court His Children Experience Social Ridicule Because of the Series

Jim Marchese Explains RHONJ Production Tricks; Court Document Proves ‘Real Housewives’ Producers and Cast Stage Scenes; Simon Barney Told the Court His Children Experience Social Ridicule Because of the Series

December 15, 2013


UPDATE 9/1/2014: The video above was published on September 1, 2014 by AfterBuzz TV’s YouTube channel:

AFTERBUZZ TV – Real Housewives of New Jersey edition is a weekly “after show” for fans of Bravo’s Real Housewives of New Jersey. In this episode hosts Megan Stecher and Grant Rutter interview Amber’s husband Jim Marchese. The Real Housewives of New Jersey is an American reality television series that debuted on May 12, 2009, and airs on Bravo. It is the network’s fourth installation of The Real Housewives franchise. The Real Housewives of New Jersey chronicles the lives of five women in and around several communities in northern New Jersey. The current cast is composed of: Teresa Giudice, Melissa Gorga, Dina Manzo, Amber Marchese, Nicole Napolitano and Teresa Aprea.

On December 13, 2013, RadarOnline reported on an e-mail (see image below) proving that producers stage scenes on Bravo’s Real Housewives series – the document was presented as evidence during RHOC Tamra Barney’s court bid to overturn her ex-husband Simon’s ban on their three children appearing on the show. After Brandi Glanville joined the cast of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, her ex Eddie Cibrian went to court, requesting that their kids not be allowed on the show; the judge granted him his wish. It has also been alleged that Dina Manzo forged her ex-husband’s signature on documents that granted permission for their daughter Lexi to appear on season 1 of The Real Housewives of New Jersey.
tamra's court bid

On December 16, 2013, RadarOnline reported that Simon Barney told a California judge that the pair’s three children should not be allowed to appear on the show because they have suffered “consistent embarrassment” due to their mother’s behavior. In a a declaration filed on December 13th, Simon said the couple’s eldest children — Sidney, 15, and Spencer, 13 — had experienced “social ridicule” after scenes were aired depicting their mom’s “head in naked strippers crotches, along with sex toys and an array of inappropriate sexual comments.

In his filing, Simon wrote:

“They have been targeted and are the subject of consistent embarrassment due to the content of the show and their mother’s involvement… The show (has) started to become increasingly more about the alcohol, intoxication, sex and bad behavior… The truth is consistently manipulated in the show in order to make the story line more dramatic and to boost ratings… She is seeking to take away my right to parent and make decisions regarding the lasting effects and impacts the show may have on my children.”

In her filing, Tamra protested that their daughter Sophia, 8 , had “expressed a desire to participate with me” in the series and “I wish to provide her that opportunity.”

Tamra also wrote:

“In fact, if our other children express a desire to participate in the future, I would also provide them with that opportunity.”

But Simon explained that Sophia is “too young” and “unable to make a decision on her own regarding her participation in the show as she does not understand the consequences it may have.”

Simon also wrote:

“Respondent states that Sophia has expressed her desire to be on the show, but that is only because Respondent has told Sophia that she has to sit out on all ‘fun’ activities because I won’t let her be filmed.

“An eight-year-old child is going to want to be a part of the activities if she is told they are ‘fun’ and she is being forced to sit out.”

RadarOnline reported that Simon also responded to Tamra’s claims that he is acting in “bad faith” by not allowing his children to be filmed given he’d previously appeared on the show. In his court filing, Simon wrote:

“Our children appeared on the show from time to time, as one of the focuses on the show was our family and encouraged our familial relationship.

“The show first aired in 2005 and I appeared briefly on the show from 2007 to 2009.

“My children made appearances in those years, but with strict supervision and approval from me.

“If my children were to be on my show, I had stated to the production company… that I was to approve all footage and the children were only to be filmed with my supervision and presence. At that time, they (the production company) agreed.”

According to RadarOnline, Simon also said that after he and Tamra separated in 2010, he chose to no longer appear on the show and constantly rebuffed approaches to rejoin the cast “because I know the negative consequences and the impact it will have on my children’s well being”:

“It was around this time that the show deviated sharply from the family oriented dynamic it had while I was on the show – the major reason I refused to allow the children to continue on the show.

“(The production company) will only air the footage of my minor children if I give my consent or if the Court orders that only Respondent’s consent is required for the children to be filmed.

“I will not sign the consent form for my eight-year-old daughter or my other children to participate on the Shows because I know the negative impact and consequences it will have on their health and well being.”

Tamra has some words for viewers who think that she comes across as a b***h on the Bravo reality TV hit: “I was hired to do a job… I am not on the show to show the viewers what I want to show them… I was given a job and I’m doing it well. Andy Cohen refers to me as ‘the perfect Housewife!’ … I am not here to make friends, and I tell every single one of the girls that. I’m here to do a job. I have Housewives from other franchises calling me and asking me ‘how do you do this?’ or ‘how do you balance this?’ … If I could, I would ask to only show my purse line or request to get my hair done every day, but that’s not ‘reality’. I do have a sarcastic side, and Bravo only shows a certain percentage of you, so if that’s all they show… They don’t see me as a mom. They don’t see a lot of my life. You do see a lot of sarcasm because they love my one-liners.” – RadarOnline, March 6, 2013, Real Mean Girl Of Orange County! Tamra Barney Sinks Claws Into Gretchen Rossi, ‘Have You Heard Her Sing?’

When producers want to start trouble, they usually go to a person who doesn’t mind coming off as a bitch. It is usually someone with a thick skin who really needs the money and can’t just quit. In this case, it is Tamra Barney — she will do whatever the producers ask her to [as will many of the other Housewives in order to keep their ‘jobs’]. – Insider, September 26, 2012, Producer-Driven Scripted Drama and Bravo’s ‘Real Housewives’ Series

TMZ reported that several lawyers and managers in Hollywood have banned together to tell clients to stay clear of ‘Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’. According to TMZ: “The triggers for the boycott are Camille Grammer and Adrienne Maloof. The way the show is structured, cast members can say ANYTHING about anyone on the show and get away with it, even if it’s inaccurate and malicious… As one professional put it: “It’s fine if Brandi Glanville does the show – she doesn’t have anything going for her and the show makes her famous. But for someone who has a real business or career outside the show, they need to stay a mile away.” – TMZ, March 4, 2013, ‘Real Housewives of Bev Hills’ Move to BOYCOTT Show

Simon Barney filed divorce papers in January 2010, charging Tamra with verbal abuse and adultery: “Petitioner contends that Respondent has been verbally abusive and has committed acts of disloyalty and infidelity.” Tamra was apparently unaware her husband of 11 years was filing divorce papers. “Simon has simply had enough,” the source said. “The show changed her.” When contacted by RadarOnline, Simon confirmed that he filed for divorce, saying, “The papers speak for themselves.” Tamra, who has a son from a previous marriage, has three children with Simon.

In February 2010, Hollwood Gossip reported that Tamra had moved onto Simon’s best friend Eddie Judge:

The Real Housewives of Orange County writers have come up with an exciting twist for Tamra Barney this season.

Just weeks after she was served divorce papers by her husband of 11 years, Simon, Barney has confirmed that she’s moved one… to Simon’s best friend Eddie Judge!

Moreover, the scorned, soon-to-be ex learned of his wife’s dalliance by witnessing it himself in a scene likely caught by Bravo cameras. Simon says he was at the Hard Rock in Las Vegas this weekend, walked into a club around midnight and:

“I saw Tamra with a friend of mine, Eddie Judge,” he told RadarOnline. “I saw them holding hands and acting like a couple. As soon as Tamra saw me she let go of his hand and walked away. I went up to Eddie and asked him if he’s (bleeping) my wife.  He didn’t say a word.

“I  couldn’t believe what I had just witnessed – the ultimate betrayal by a pal and my estranged wife.”

Nice soundbite! Kudos to whichever writer fed Simon that line.

Simon adds that he fell to his knees at the time and was helped out of the hotel by a series producer doorman.

Barney admits to the relationship with her ex-husband’s close friend. She said:

“I started dating Eddie Judge last week… We are romantically involved. He is a great guy. It was bound to happen that we both we would dating again after [Simon] filed for divorce.

“I don’t know what the future holds with Eddie and only time will tell.”

Time, and script writers, that is. We’re guessing they’re hard at work on a suspense-filled conclusion to this storyline.

RadarOnline previously reported that Tamra’s costar Vicki Gunvalson was caught in a lie earlier this year when it emerged that a scene from last season — during which her daughter supposedly revealed she’d got married in Las Vegas — was staged.

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  1. Autumn
    December 15, 2013 at 9:23 PM

    Tamra has a purse line?

  2. black enga
    December 15, 2013 at 9:44 PM

    Anyone up for making an i petition to not to let any children join the HW’s shows?

    • December 16, 2013 at 1:25 AM

      Hey black enga, I too don’t think children should be involved in the HWs shows. If a petition would help, I’m all for it, but from my observations, I don’t think they are effective. But perhaps the effort would send a message…

      • black enga
        December 16, 2013 at 4:03 AM

        I know Fame, it’s sad but true. Lately I think most of the reality stars are bringing their kids on to save their weak story lines. When I watched Teresa’s and her kids on past episodes, they were so entertaining and funny. It seemed like they were just filming an average (real) day at the Giudice home. I don’t think Bravo expected that or the other cast members. Now all of a sudden it’s like their saying, look at how cute my kids are too. The scenes come across as staged and phoney. They should read some of the horrible posts I have seen and think twice before doing it.

        We all know that’s not going to happen, not when all their parents see are dollar signs. It’s bad enough how they bash and attack the adult cast members, no need to put innocent children in the line of fire. SMH

        Thanks again Fame for being you and keeping it Real in a world of fake reality.

        Love You and Fame-ily!

        • Laram
          December 19, 2013 at 8:26 PM

          Can we keep the Giudice kids, and ban all others on this petition? Lol, I know.

          However, as micromanaging Simon was edited to be, I completely agree with him. Tamra’s verbage and “mean girl” script, as she herself admits, is not maternal. Sounds like she is listening to her 8 year old. Uhm, just no.

          I have no problems with the HW that are genuine in their “HW roles”, or apart of the storyline from get go, or even the 18 amd older kids. Tamra and her kids may soften her, but no way, no how do I want to watch a show using children for a “storyline”.

          Also, it is pretty sad when ROL reports some truth, lol.

          • black enga
            December 21, 2013 at 4:13 PM

            lol, Laram those four are Keepers!

  3. December 15, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    First time commenter….long time reader….. I have been watching the RH franchise since the beginning. And, I have always enjoyed it. It was catty and petty, but in an innocent way. Now, it has turned into something way too malicious for me. Why these women choose to give their souls to the Bravo devil is beyond me. I can’t imagine putting myself out there for all of us viewers at home to rip apart. Because, come on…we all do.

    Now, while I do still watch a majority of the franchises, I think it is ruined beyond repair. When stories like this come out, it just further proves that this “reality” is completely fake and just not real. I think if Bravo was smart they would abandon this franchise and try and come up with something new.

    • December 16, 2013 at 1:07 AM

      I totally agree, rjt25! Even the cast twitter wars are now fake… it keeps the fans riled up and watching. They want the fans to comment about them on the blogs and pick sides (team this or team that).

      • December 18, 2013 at 8:48 AM

        I do know for a fact that you are correct about the warning that went out to everybody in the Beverly Hills/L.A. social scene. My SIL who is in showbusiness told me that warnings went out to anybody that was asked or considering doing the show to pass on it because it is a damaging experience. Which is why you don’t see the new cast members casting as sort of desperate on the part of Bravo.

      • Laram
        December 19, 2013 at 8:29 PM

        I agree, or they have to censor themselves to be ingenuine.

  4. December 16, 2013 at 1:09 AM

    Off topic news about the Manzos – former Brownstone waitress claims racism, unpaid overtime, and being “forced to work in a filthy, unhygienic, roach-infested atmosphere”:

    ‘Real Husband’ Faces Real Lawsuit
    By CHRIS FRY

    NEWARK (CN) – A waitress claims in court that the husband of a “Real Housewives of New Jersey” star, an owner of a restaurant featured on the show, stiffed her for overtime and called her and her co-workers “Spic bitches” and other “racial, sexual, ethnic and country of origin epithets.”

    Lanise Jackson sued The Brownstone House, its co-owners Albert and Tommy Manzo and manager Robert Manger, in Essex County Court.

    Albert Manzo is married to “Real Housewives” cast member Caroline Manzo. The Brownstone House has been prominently featured in the show since it began airing in 2009.

    Jackson says in the lawsuit that she had two stints working at the Brownstone, one from October 2011 to April 2012 and another from September to November of 2013. She claims she was “constructively terminated as she could no longer endure the racial, sexual, ethnic and country of origin epithets hurled at her hourly.”

    Jackson claims that the Manzos and Manger regularly called her and other waitresses “bitch, fucking stupid bitch, Spic bitches, lazy motherfuckers,” and other insults.

    Tommy Manzo asked her, “Are you blind? What are you, Chinese? Open your eyes,” she says in the complaint

    To top if off, Jackson claims she was “forced to work in a filthy, unhygienic atmosphere as defendant, The Brownstone House, Inc.’s facilities were roach-infested.”

    Jackson says she regularly “worked in excess of forty hours per week” but “was never paid time and half overtime.”

    Albert Manzo told Courthouse News the complaint is “absolutely unbelievable,” and declined further comment.

    Jackson seeks damages for discrimination, hostile work environment and hourly wage violations.

    She is represented by Mark Mulick of Montclair, N.J.

    http://www.entlawdigest.com/2013/12/13/2869.htm

    Back in June 2011, a former waiter also alleged unpaid overtime in suit against The Brownstone:

    Former waiter alleges unpaid overtime in suit against The Brownstone
    NorthJersey.com
    June 3, 2011

    A former head waiter at The Brownstone in Paterson is suing the popular catering hall and its operators in federal court, claiming they cheated him out of overtime pay for the last five years.

    Sandy Fernandez of Paterson says in his suit that he worked about 850 hours of overtime a year from 2005 until he left the job on May 25, and was not compensated for the extra time.

    The suit was filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Newark under the Fair Labor Standards Act. It contends that The Brownstone House Inc. and Albert and Thomas Manzo, the catering hall’s president and vice president, respectively, willfully failed to pay Fernandez overtime despite the fact that he was a non-exempt employee who was paid by the hour.

    Fernandez alleges he was required to work more than 40 hours per week without overtime pay, and that the Manzos were aware of it because they “maintained a computerized biometric time-keeping system” for employees to clock in and out of work.

    The suit seeks compensatory and punitive damages.

    Albert Manzo is the husband of Caroline Manzo, one of the stars of the reality television series “The Real Housewives of New Jersey.” He resigned from the North Jersey District Water Supply Commission in March, saying he had become a distraction as a result of the publicity generated by Governor Christie’s threat to file ethics charges if he did not step down in a flap over his residency. He listed The Brownstone as his official address when he was appointed to the commission in 2008, not his house in Franklin Lakes, to dodge having his nomination blocked by a Bergen County senator.

    Thomas Manzo is married to Dina Manzo, who left the “Real Housewives” cast during the show’s second season.

    Fernandez’s attorney, Paul Castronovo of Morristown, declined to discuss the case. The Manzos did not return a call to The Brownstone seeking comment.

    http://www.northjersey.com/news/crime_courts/060311_Former_waiter_sues_Brownstone_House_over_OT_pay.html

    • December 16, 2013 at 8:23 AM

      I don’t trust the Manzos, but I also question someone working at a place for 5 years before complaining about not being paid for 850 hours overtime as well as someone working under horrible conditions leaving once and then coming back for more a year later. Albie and Chris don’t work there anymore and you would have to wonder why since dear old dad and uncle Tommy are practically glued to the place.

    • December 18, 2013 at 8:49 AM

      I gotta say that I don’t believe that Al Manzo would be dumb enough to call his employees “spic bitches.”

      • December 18, 2013 at 4:42 PM

        I don’t believe that part either. The OT, it should be easy to prove, get copies of the time cards and paychecks. If it’s auto system where you swipe in that is typically a direct feed to the payroll system. Can you cheat that, sure but why?

        I don’t get how she’s going too prove it?

  5. December 16, 2013 at 3:54 AM

    I’m pretty deep into my BH addiction at the moment – I’m just amazed at what these women are prepared to do for a little air time – ugh, they need new writers! As for for the Manzos – I believe it! What did the say about big girls and BJ’s?

    • December 16, 2013 at 3:56 AM

      Having reread that – I still surprise myself that I tune in. I’m a University educated woman who works in the industry- I should be watching Mad Men or House of Cards or Wallander…. I must say my two favourite shows are Modern Family and How I Met Your Mother…

      • rfeliciat
        December 18, 2013 at 4:52 PM

        Those 2 are my favorite ones too!

      • Laram
        December 19, 2013 at 8:32 PM

        I hear you, Sackem! I shock myself everyday with this HW bs, that I am oddly into. Lol

  6. Nikki
    December 16, 2013 at 12:12 PM

    I knew this already about all these so called “Unscripted Reality Show”. They are actually pretty scripted phony baloney shows. I was at a Restaurant 2 years ago in Costa Mesa (Ocean bay Club?) They were filming a segment there & they kept stopping the women (Tamra was 1 of them & Vicki too) and telling them to start over & really let lose. They were there for hours according to our waitress & I never saw them eat a bite of food, just drink. They kept telling Tamra to say this really stupid (it was suppose eto be funny I guess) line over & over. She kept screwing it up. STOOOOO PID! In Person the ladies were overly made up & Vicki is FAT. All Spanx & high heel shows for that cow too look good. Also, my sister Lichelle lives in Ridgewood NJ & has seen Kathy & Teresa shopping together very recently & getting along great. These shows are all to just make money for Bravo & make these “celebs” rich for the time being. Most all of them unless they were truly rich before like Lisa Vanderpump is, they squander it & end up middle class again.
    Btw, I also witness Slave & Wretched at the LA Mission posing for the homeless on Thanksgiving. Total trumped up photo op. They didn’t do squat!

    • December 16, 2013 at 4:00 PM

      Ah ha! I think I saw a Blind Gossip item about the Thanksgiving thing!

    • December 18, 2013 at 8:51 AM

      These women were on my red eye flight from LA in coach with one cameraman on their way to the Carribean and they looked like prostitute aliens from another planet. People were looking at them because they were frightening-looking.

  7. Nikki
    December 16, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    Shoes not shows sorry.

  8. December 16, 2013 at 1:08 PM

    ‘Sex Toys, Strippers & Waxing Private Parts’: Tamra Barney’s Ex-Husband Tells Judge His Children Are ’Consistently Embarrassed’ By Their Mom, As He Seeks To Ban Them From Appearing On ‘RHOOC’
    By Dylan Howard, RadarOnline
    Posted on Dec 16, 2013 @ 3:15AM

    The ex-husband of Real Housewives of Orange County star Tamra Barney has told a California judge that the pair’s three children should not be allowed to appear on the hit Bravo show because they have suffered “consistent embarrassment” due to their mother’s behavior.

    In a sensational court filing, a furious Simon Barney said the couple’s eldest children — Sidney, 15, and Spencer, 13 — had experienced “social ridicule” after scenes were aired depicting their mom’s “head in naked strippers crotches, sex toys and sexual comments” during last season.

    “They have been targeted and are the subject of consistent embarrassment due to the content of the show and their mother’s involvement,” Simon said in a declaration filed on Friday as part of their ongoing feud.

    He insisted the teenage pair had both refrained from being on RHOOC — rated a TV-14 on the TV Parental Guidelines system — and “want no part of it.”

    “The show (has) started to become increasingly more about the alcohol, intoxication, sex and bad behavior,” said Simon, who bitterly divorced Tamra in 2010.

    In his no-holds barred affidavit filed in an Orange County court and obtained exclusively by RadarOnline.com, the one-time reality star cited a number of X-rated scenes involving his ex-wife in a bid to prove his argument, including one which depicted Tamra “naked in a bath tub being intimate with her then boyfriend, current husband, Edward Judge.”

    Simon also said Tamra had her “vagina waxed on camera, with several men, other than her husband-to-be, present in the room,” while her bachelorette party involved her “head in naked strippers crotches,” along with sex toys and an array of inappropriate sexual comments.

    He said he did not want the pair’s children, including eight-year-old Sophia, to be featured because “the truth is consistently manipulated in the show in order to make the story line more dramatic and to boost ratings.”

    Simon charged: “The manipulation and falsification of original statements and actions results in a negative perception from the public and it destroys one’s reputation.”

    RadarOnline.com broke the story last week: a defiant 46-year-old Tamra launched a court bid in a desperate attempt to have a judge permit the three children to appear on the original Housewives franchise.

    Ahead of a Dec. 20 showdown in court, Tamra used her own court filing to argue that under California’s family code, she should be able to act alone and permit the children to participate in the show, but only during her periods of physical custody.

    The pair currently share joint legal custody of the children.

    But according to Simon, “all major decisions pertaining to health, education and day care shall be made jointly by the parents.”

    “She is seeking to take away my right to parent and make decisions regarding the lasting effects and impacts the show may have on my children,” he blasted.

    “This is not a unilateral ‘routine’ decision, it is a ‘major decision’ that must be made jointly.”

    In her filing, Tamra — who joined the OC cast in season three — protested that Sophia had “expressed a desire to participate with me” in the series.

    “I wish to provide her that opportunity,” Tamra wrote. “In fact, if our other children express a desire to participate in the future, I would also provide them with that opportunity.”

    But Simon said Sophia is “too young” and “unable to make a decision on her own regarding her participation in the show as she does not understand the consequences it may have.”

    He said, “Respondent states that Sophia has expressed her desire to be on the show, but that is only because Respondent has told Sophia that she has to sit out on all ‘fun’ activities because I won’t let her be filmed.

    “An eight year old child us going to want to be a part of the activities is she is told they are ‘fun’ and she is being forced to sit out,” Simon said.

    He also responded to Tamra’s claims that he is acting in “bad faith” by not allowing his children to be filmed given he’d previously appeared on the show.

    “Our children appeared on the show from time to time, as one of the focuses on the show was out family and encouraged our familial relationship,” Simon said.

    “The show first aired in 2005 and I appeared briefly on the show from 2007 to 2009.

    “My children made appearances in those years, but with strict supervision and approval from me.

    “If my children were to be on my show, I had stated to the production company… that I was to approve all footage and the children were only to be filmed with my supervision and presence. At that time, (the production company) agreed.

    “It was a good thing that I was on the show and supervising my children. One time while the show was being filmed, one of the cast members stated something about “T-Bagging” which is an inappropriate sexual comments, while Sidney, age 10 at the time, was present. I immediately took my daughter away and stated to the cast member that such comments were inappropriate while children were around. Later, he agreed that I was correct in needing to be present.”

    Simon said after he and Tamra separated in 2010, he chose to no longer appear on the show.

    He said, “It was around this time that the show deviated sharply from the family oriented dynamic it had while I was on the show. The major reason I refused to allow the children to continue on the show.”

    Simon said he’s constantly rebuffed approaches to rejoin the cast, “because I know the negative consequences and the impact it will have on my children’s well being.

    “(The production company) will only air the footage of my minor children if I give my consent, or if the Court orders that only Respondent’s consent is required for the children to be filmed,” he wrote.

    “I will not sign the consent form for my eight year old daughter or my other children, to participate on the Shows, because I know the negative impact and consequences it will have on their health and well being.”

    http://radaronline.com/exclusives/2013/12/tamra-barney-sex-toys-strippers-waxing-ex-simon-barney-ban-children-real-housewives-orange-county/

    • December 16, 2013 at 4:09 PM

      I always saw Simon as quite a strict person but this statement couldn’t be more spot on or rational or responsible if he tried.

      • December 18, 2013 at 8:52 AM

        At least someone is a responsible parent.

    • December 16, 2013 at 5:50 PM

      Well stated Simon!

  9. December 16, 2013 at 7:34 PM

    I heartily agree, and its been evident for quite sometime, imo. That’s why support for the Giudice’s has always puzzled me. I guess when some see them on TV with their children, there is an emotional connection to them. What you see on TV is fake. What you see in federal courtrooms concerning felonious charges stemming from 2001 and beyond against these people, as well as others on reality shows, is reality. This is their true life.

    • dch60
      December 17, 2013 at 1:20 PM

      The family scenes with their children are fake? Ummm, okay.

      What I hear most is people would like the shows to revert back… before they turned into one big bitch fest.

      It’s not like we haven’t heard a thousand times that many scenes are staged. As much as we hate to hear it, they have to be to some extent. When the women shop together, it’s not like the cameras happened to be in there when the women show up. We know they wouldn’t have all gone to Palm Springs if not for the show.

      What I don’t understand, if everyone thinks they’re all acting, then does Brandi get a pass because she isn’t really the person that so many have grown to dislike, in some cases, “hate”?

      That’s basically what’s you’re suggesting. What we see on TV is fake. If the Guidices being happy with their family is fake, then Brandi being a drunk idiot is fake.

      • Honnie Badger
        December 17, 2013 at 1:29 PM

        Interesting! Know what it is? Their personalities are authentic to who they are, so they are not “fake.” The situations controlled by the producers (scenes and setups) are. Just my opinion!

        • Laram
          December 19, 2013 at 8:36 PM

          True!

      • December 18, 2013 at 3:02 PM

        No, I meant when people see them interacting with their children, they can relate to them in a positive way.

    • kitty
      December 17, 2013 at 3:58 PM

      I think the fan support for the Giudices resulted from the obviously scripted pile-on by everyone in the NJ cast. It didn’t make sense that in one short “season”, EVERYone in the NJ cast would turn on Teresa and her husband and kids. Viewer backlash at this set-up created a loyal fan base for the Giudices and signaled a backfire on the direction that production chose to take this story-line. I think most folks can separate television from real life and can see that the Giudices appear to have been “wronged” by production and could be convicted of wrong-doings in a court of law. I’ll wait to see what happens in court before I judge their real life situation.

      • December 19, 2013 at 10:57 AM

        I think you are on to something there. If these people weren’t on a fake reality tv show, there would be no tolerance or support for their actions thru out the years.
        The viewer has been played, and you have to wonder if Bravo twisted the plots to set these scenarios up to do exactly what has happened, support from the outraged audience for T and Joe.

    • kayswhims
      December 18, 2013 at 10:26 AM

      I am attracted to a mother who loves her family the way that Teresa does. My support stems from the real or fake attacks against her by cast members when no one could pin point what she did to them. If it was all fake, what a crime to drag you family through the mud for the sake of fame. If it was fake script utilizing real painful events behind the scenes, what a sick piece of work Bravo is as well as cast members.

      I support people who pull themselves up from any situation. What is happening to the Giudice family in ” true life” parallels the past storyline of the show. The Lauritas, Manzos, Gorgas, and Wakiles pointed their fingers and Teresa ” wrong doings” and their own lives reeked with them and now the government and banks are hypocrites, shoving a multitude of sins under the rug for big shots, yet requiring a scapegoat to pay dearly.

    • mazeycat
      December 19, 2013 at 11:04 PM

      The Giudice kids have been exploited and portrayed badly on that show, why would Tamra actually be TRYING to get her youngest on the OC? Simon gives her a perfect excuse to shield her kids from that environment, I’m sure Teresa would love to have a Simon around frankly. Producers were pretty harsh in their edits on Gia until pretty recently. Milania too. I doubt Teresa enjoys that, who would? But she needs the money and has no excuse for suddenly excluding the kids from shooting when they’ve always been a part of the show. Would I have said scr3w that and quit long ago? Sure. But obvs. the girl will do most anything to hang onto the lifestyle she portrays on the show. Or the illusion of it. Still. You can tell she hasn’t been happy at times about the way her kids have been portrayed on NJ at times. Tamra can keep her kids out of that sh!tstorm AND throw all the blame on Simon being intractable if the Bravo execs complain it limits her storyline and here she is actively TRYING to get them on. To “soften” her character. What a selfish, self absorbed narcissistic fame hoar.

  10. December 17, 2013 at 9:39 PM

    Joe Giudice attended a status conference today with Judge Greta Gooden Brown to discuss whether he would be pleading or going forward with the state trial for forgery and identity theft. No plea deal was reached. According to the judge in the courtroom video available at NorthJersey.com (link below), they will “pre-try” his case on January 6th at 1:30 PM.

    http://www.northjersey.com/montville/Real_Housewives_Joe_Giudice_could_see_two_trials_in_2014.html?page=all

    It has been misreported recently that Joe’s license has been suspended 47 times, but that is not true – since getting a NJ license in 1987, Joe has had a cumulative total of 47 POINTS on his license. Also, it was misinterpreted recently that he was cited for not having insurance, but he was cited for not having a current copy of proof of insurance (the slip of paper that comes when you renew your premium).

    ‘Real Housewives’ Joe Giudice could see two trials in 2014 [video]
    Tuesday December 17, 2013, 12:58 PM
    BY JOHN PETRICK
    The Record

    It appears 2014 will be a busy year for “Real Housewives of New Jersey” husband Giuseppe “Joe” Giudice, who appeared in state court in Paterson Tuesday so attorneys could figure out whether his state trial can be scheduled before or after his federal one.

    Tuesday’s status conference was just the latest in a series of pretrial hearings in which Giudice’s state trial date keeps getting pushed back, usually because of conflicts presented by other previously scheduled trials the judge or attorneys must handle first.

    It was agreed among the lawyers and judge Tuesday that all pretrial motions will be filed by Jan. 13, when a trial date will likely be set on state charges of presenting false identification to obtain a driver’s license while Giudice’s real one was suspended – charges that carry mandatory prison time if he is convicted of up to 10 years.

    After months of negotiations, the defense in April rejected the state’s final plea offer that would have given Giudice a recommended five-year state prison sentence. Clifton defense attorney Miles Feinstein has maintained that Giudice should receive probation, noting he has no felony criminal convictions in his past. He has also alleged that the prosecution is being especially hard on him because of his celebrity status. The Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office has denied those allegations.

    Meanwhile, his trial on unrelated federal bank fraud and tax evasion charges is currently scheduled to begin some time in April, Feinstein said in court.

    Giudice, bundled up in a black top coat and scarf, did not speak during the brief hearing.

    Tuesday’s conference was heard after Feinstein, Passaic County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Jay McCann and state Superior Court Judge Greta Gooden Brown spent more than half an hour discussing the case privately in chambers.

    Giudice was not a part of those discussions, as he sat silently and alone in the back aisle of the courtroom or out in the hallway while waiting for the hearing to start.

    “We are prepared to go to trial,” Feinstein said. “We have agreed to come back in early January for pretrial, and then we’ll have a picture of when this will be tried, at that time. That’s basically where we stand.”

    McCann responded: “The state will be ready on the trial date,” whenever that will be.

    One of the potential conflicts is an impending homicide trial before Gooden Brown in which Feinstein happens to be the defense lawyer and which is currently in the early stages of jury selection.

    Giudice, 43, has had his share of run-ins with the law, since becoming a star, of sorts, on the Bravo reality TV series. He was fined, had his license suspended and served 10 days in jail after flipping his truck on a Montville road in 2010, for which he was arrested for driving under the influence. At the time, he had accumulated 39 points for such offenses as speeding and leaving the scene of an accident.

    In the state trial that was the subject of Tuesday’s status conference, Giudice is accused of presenting marriage and birth certificates belonging to his brother Pietro to obtain a driver’s license at the Motor Vehicle Commission office in Paterson in 2010 while his license was under suspension on the DUI charge.

    Court records show Giudice was issued a summons for careless driving on Nov. 5 in Montville. The status of that case could not immediately be confirmed Tuesday. In their federal case, Joe and his wife, Teresa Giudice, have been indicted on charges they failed to file tax returns during years in which they earned more than $1 million and that they made false statements to obtain a loan.

    If convicted on the most serious of those federal charges, the Giudices could face hefty fines and up to 30 years in prison. They would most likely, however, receive far less time under federal sentencing guidelines. Joe Giudice, an Italian citizen, also could face deportation.

    Email: petrick@northjersey.com

    • December 17, 2013 at 9:53 PM

      I have always stated that if he is proven guilty in a court of law then he should pay the price. I strongly feel that the potential sentence of ten years max is a joke. Illegals and many under 21 are busted daily and get off scot free. Granted I get that he allegedly presented at DMV himself, but a fake I’d is a fake I’d in my mind. In addition there are so many violent offenders that get with ridiculously low sentences in comparison to this!

      I do think that the DA is using him an example. Just my two cents!

      • December 17, 2013 at 10:08 PM

        So true, mzjules – 10 years is harsh. I watch a lot of true crime shows and in many cases murderers, rapists, pedophiles get sentenced to less than 10 years (some less than 5). The justice system is whack!

        • GPM
          December 18, 2013 at 2:08 PM

          It’s always really struck me that Joe Giudice wasn’t caught driving and he wasn’t caught in possession of a fraudulent driver’s license. Indeed, to the best of my knowledge no fraudulent driver’s license was ever located.

          I understand that what the police are saying Joe did is a plausible theory as to something that might have occurred — but It seems to me that what these NJ MVC employees were doing kind of calls into question the integrity of the whole system:

          http://www.csoonline.com/article/695133/new-jersey-charges-four-in-identity-theft-cases

          http://www.trentonian.com/article/TT/20111122/NEWS/311229986

          Does anyone know how — or is able to find out — how any of these cases ever resolved?

          • black enga
            December 18, 2013 at 3:15 PM

            GPM, IKR, that leads me back to the whole Caroline statement that her husband would destroy Joe.

            I read somewhere that Joe was bragging about getting a drivers license in his brothers name to Chris or someone that the Mazo’s know and that they (Al) tipped off the police. They could never catch Joe actually driving so they pulled over his brother instead. I don’t know if it is true but it sure is a coinkadik 😉

            • Laram
              December 19, 2013 at 9:01 PM

              I still think of all that, also @blackenga. However, bottom line is he allegedly broke the law, unfortunately.

        • kitty
          December 18, 2013 at 2:39 PM

          It’s whack, alright. If the jury had convicted Jodi Arias on 2nd Degree instead of 1st, she’d have only received 10-22 years. Factor in her time served…and that puts it in chilling context, to me.

      • December 19, 2013 at 7:14 PM

        Can I tell you something? Here in Miami a man got two years because his pitbull killed a cat. Two years in prison. For second degree murder of a human being, or DUI with fatalities, The sentence is often very light. However, look what they did to Martha Stewart. Let’s remember, Joe Guidice and especially Teresa did not pistol whip anybody, they played fast and llose with the banks and lending institutions which in turn were playing right back at ya.

        • mzjulesaz
          December 19, 2013 at 7:37 PM

          I know it drives me nuts how inconsistent sentences are!

          • Laram
            December 19, 2013 at 8:42 PM

            It drives me nuts, also, that Feds use time and money to make an example? Has anyone noticed that IRS is working overtime for closed back Income Tax, and now stating you owe this or that…from years ago?! What? Do your freakin’ job the first time around, or is this how they replenish our National Debt?!

            • December 21, 2013 at 9:57 AM

              I know I’ve talked about an x-bil I have who was charged with defrauding the government while he was a deputy sheriff. While the FEDS were investigating him they also found out the sheriff was the one who ”taught” my bil how to defraud the government. Both of them were filing false claims on a farm subsidy program. Now, many, many, many rancher’s in Montana will fib about how much live stock they own. Yet, my bil and the sheriff were the only one’s investigated, charged and convicted! Years after the conviction it came out that my ex-bil’s new wife is the one who tipped off the FEDS. So, Ms. Laram, I’m with you about how the FEDS using time and money to make an example of someone drives you nuts! It makes me SMH! I do remember when the idictment’s were handed to my BIL/Sheriff it was on the news! To me, it seeme like the FEDS knew rancher’s were taking advantage of the program and had to pick some public officials to use as an example, kind of like the Giudice’s!

        • Laram
          December 19, 2013 at 9:05 PM

          Omg. I am listening right now to a neighbor’s dog whom cries all the time when it is cold or horribly hot. The bastards do not care, or comfort him/her. I want to call authorities or SPCA! The reason that I don’t call authorities is bc of whacked laws and job losses now. I have to do something, tho. Why have a pet if you can’t or won’t take care of it?

    • December 18, 2013 at 8:53 AM

      Oy Vey.

  11. kayswhims
    December 18, 2013 at 9:49 AM

    Grandma’s Butterscotch Pie

    Ingredients:
    1 cup white sugar
    1/3 cup water
    2 eggs separated
    2 1/2 to 3Tbsp.cornstarch
    1 tsp. mapleline flavor
    1/3 cup butter
    2 cups milk

    Directions:
    Add enough water to cornstarch to thicken.Mix in egg yolks and set aside. Mix sugar and butter in a cooking pot over high heat while stirring. Let caramelize. (melt butter and sugar together till it turns light carmel color ) Add 1/3 cup water and cook until sugar dissolves. Add 2 cups milk and cornstarch mixture and cook until thick. Add mapleline flavor. Pour into a baked pie crust and use the egg whites to make a meringue and bake until done.

  12. December 18, 2013 at 3:43 PM

    Cherry Tortillas

    1/2 cup butter
    1/2 cup white sugar
    1/2 cup water
    5-6 flour tortillas (8-10 inch)
    1 can 21oz cherry pie filling ( or filling of choice. — I have tried apple and peach too)
    2 tbs white sugar
    1/2 tsp cinnamon
    1 tbs. crushed almonds (optional)

    1. Grease9x9 baking dish
    2. Combine the water and butteriness 1/2 a cup of sugar in saucepan and bring to a boil. Place a couple of spoonfuls of pie filling, slightly off center on the tortillas. Roll up like an enchilada or burrito ( I do burrito style, ends tucked as you lose less of the filling. Place seam side down in baking dish, side by side – should be a tight fit. Pour the hot liquid over the enchiladas making sure to cover the tops. Mixture will be watery. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
    3. Remove enchildas from fridge. Preheat oven to 375. Combine remaining ingredients: 2 tbs sugar, cinnamon and almonds. Sprinkle over the enchiladas.
    4. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Let cool slightly before serving. I always add a scoopish vanilla bean ice cream.

    I know it sounds weird but they are really good 🙂

    • kayswhims
      December 18, 2013 at 7:46 PM

      oooh I want to try an apple one. Are they gooey like apple dumplings or crispy?

      • December 18, 2013 at 8:05 PM

        A little of .. but while firm goody too.

    • dubbalicious
      December 20, 2013 at 11:58 AM

      Jules…It sounds amazing!! I’ll definitely be trying this. 🙂

  13. December 18, 2013 at 4:10 PM

    Slow cooker cheesy brats stew

    6 brats links browned and sliced into 1/2 inch slices

    4 medium potatoes peeled and cubed

    1 tbs died diced onion, or 1/4 cup diced real onion ( my pref is real)

    1-2 cans green beans drained. I put one can in and wait until the rest of the ingredients are
    stirred in to see if I need more, I am weird as sometimes I do sometimes I don’t.

    1 red bell pepper seeded and chopped. Note-other colors fine, i just like the color of red and sometimes do red,yellow, green – to roughly equal one pepper.

    2 cups shredded cheddar cheese( I use the 4 cheese kind as that is what I always have in the fridge

    1 can cream of ?? Soup. I’ve used mushroom, golden mushroom, cheesy broccoli etc.

    1/3 cup water

    1. Place the ingredients in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low 6 hours/high 3 hours or until potatoes are fork tender.

    The fun thing about this is you can modify it suit your tastes – if you don’t like beans try corn etc.

    • Detroitrockcity
      December 19, 2013 at 7:27 AM

      Sound soooo good!! Just to walk in the door from hard core shopping! And its done! Yum!! Will try this one; )!! I would love anyone to post the corn -pudding recipe again

      • Detroitrockcity
        December 19, 2013 at 7:33 AM

        Anyone who shopped Target needs to check their credit cards,a massive theft of your info is at risk!! It started on Black Friday!! Over 40 thousand people are at risk! ; /

        • December 19, 2013 at 2:26 PM

          Wow, Thanks so much for the heads up, Detroit.

        • December 19, 2013 at 10:47 PM

          Been dealing with that fraud of our members all day. Fraud started Black Friday and was caught this past sunday. Hackers got customers’ name, debit or credit card numbers, exp dates and CVV numbers. If your debit card was compromised, close your checking account asap. The hackers sorted the data by zip code and were selling the info little by little so as to avoid detection. Check your accounts carefully.

          • jackhole2014
            December 20, 2013 at 4:05 PM

            Great to know! Thanks, and sounds like you might have a lot of tough work days ahead!

          • Jeannie5233
            December 20, 2013 at 4:44 PM

            I think this affects those who shopped physically within the brick & mortar stores and NOT those who shopped on the Internet. If anyone knows differently, can you please post.

            • December 22, 2013 at 1:35 PM

              Definitely not online — in-store only. Target and the FBI are saying no CVV codes were taken, but if you have a Target Red card — it directly connects to your checking account – close that account asap. They hackers will likely wait it out little by little and wait for the dust to settle.

      • black enga
        December 21, 2013 at 5:45 PM

        Here are the two I found in past article, I want to try them both,lol.

        Jeannie5233 says:
        November 26, 2013 at 9:34 PM
        Here you go, meri!
        1 can whole kernel corn, drained
        1 can creamed corn
        1/4 lb (1 stick) lightly salted butter, melted
        2 large eggs, beaten
        1 cup sour cream (do not use reduced or fat free – does not work well)
        1 cup corn muffin mix (Jiffy)
        Mix all ingredients by hand thoroughly. Bake in a 2 quart uncovered casserole at 350 degrees for one hour – Test to see if done by sticking a butter knife in middle. If it comes out clean, it is done. Do not double this recipe – just make two separate ones for each end of the table.
        Mzjulesaz’ variation to spice things up a bit – add one can of green chiles.

        nsr1076 says:
        December 15, 2013 at 9:40 AM
        Here is my shoepeg corn casserole recipe:
        2 cans shoepeg corn, drained
        8oz cream cheese
        4oz can diced green chiles
        1/2 cup milk
        2 tbs butter (optional)
        1 to 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
        1. Heat oven to 350. Spray a baking pan with cooking spray and set aside for corn.
        2. Melt butter, milk, and cream cheese in a pot on stove. Its faster if you cut the cream cheese in pieces.
        3. Stir in the corn and chilies. If diced too big you might want to give them an extra chop.
        4. Put the corn mixture in the pan and top with the cheddar cheese to your liking. Cover with foil and put in the oven at 350 for 25 minutes.
        You might want to double the recipe since I always have to for my family of 4 that love this recipe. Especially since I only make it for Thanksgiving and Christmas and maybe for one special occasion if needed.

        I found this one online you actually cook it in a crock pot. 0.0

        http://www.thefrugalfoodiemama.com/2013/11/copycat-city-bbq-crock-pot-corn-pudding.html

  14. December 18, 2013 at 6:57 PM
    • kitty
      December 18, 2013 at 7:14 PM

      Wow. That *is* a goodie! smh

  15. December 19, 2013 at 7:21 AM

    Jeez I miss everyone!

    • Detroitrockcity
      December 19, 2013 at 8:13 AM

      Miss you too Sackem, beautiful Ava must be so big by now!! 🙂 Hope SANTA brings her every wish!! Geez, looks like Joe is going down?? Wish them all the best,but you have to own up to your mistakes and make it right!Don’t want to see anyones Mom or Dad go to jail

      but they in their hearts know if they did wrong?;/ Always A T -Fan! Hope they make it right:) OT? What do youfrom
      Duck Dinesty?? all think about Papa Phils “suspention “

      • Detroitrockcity
        December 19, 2013 at 8:27 AM

        Sorry, I ment Duck Dynasty? His comments were of what he believes but I think he should have left it at that? He got too much into “behind closed doors” for me;) didn’t need to know the diff between a vagage and a butthole!? What you do in your house is your bizz!!Your day of Judgement is your own;) Own it!! I don’t close my eyes but sometimes I know when to keep my mouth shut!! 🙂

  16. corky21
    December 19, 2013 at 2:09 PM

    it’s so staged. my brother watched them stage a fight on NYHW a few years ago. And, watching Shahs last episode, GG is with her boyfriend and owning up her cheating, and the plates are there and he’s eating, then the plates aren’t there, then her wine is filled to the top and the next second the glass is 3/4 empty, and GG is trying to own up to it, and it’s taking a while, and again he’s listening and a fork is in his mouth, then next scene, no plates, but the same talking is going on. It’s so obvious.

  17. December 19, 2013 at 7:18 PM

    They hired some family that they knew were bible belters who invented a duck whistle and live by a certain code, what did they think, he was a big Hollywood liberal? Anyway A&E has every right to suspend him or fire him or whatever, and another channel has every right to pick the show up. I have never seen it, but my daughter loves it and she is the biggest liberal on the planet. So I guess every Mormon is a total pos according to A&E.

  18. Anonymous
    December 19, 2013 at 8:54 PM

    Duck Dynasty Prediction
    By Denny Burk on December 18, 2013
    http://www.dennyburk.com/duck-dynasty-prediction/

    I predicted privately some months ago that it would only be a matter of time before the media sniffed out the views of the Duck Dynasty guys about sexuality. I also predicted that when they did, their reception in the popular culture would turn on a dime. Well, here we are. In a wide-ranging interview with GQ, the “Duck Commander” Phil Robertson spoke candidly about his views. In particular, he identified homosexual behavior as sinful. In response, the A&E network has suspended Robertson from the television series indefinitely with this explanation:

    We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson’s comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the seriesDuck Dynasty. His personal views in no way reflect those of A+E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely.

    Yes, you read that right. Some “personal beliefs” are allowed at A&E, and some are not. If you happen to express a view on homosexuality in keeping with the entire 2,000-year consensus of the Christian church, A&E says that you are not allowed on their network.

    So here’s my second prediction. This won’t end with Phil Robertson’s suspension. His remarks will end Duck Dynasty. The other guys on the program will be dogged in every interview from here on out until they give their opinions as well. And as soon as they do, the entire cast will branded heretical by the sexual revolutionaries that dominate popular culture. When that happens, that will be the end.

    To be sure, Robertson’s manner of expression was unhelpfully crude and explicit. But that’s not why gay rights activists will be on the warpath. They will be on the warpath because—on the substance—he seems to be affirming what Christians have always believed about sexual morality—chastity outside of marriage and fidelity within marriage. The Bible teaches that any transgression of those two norms is sin. And that view is now considered heretical by the spirit of the age—tantamount to bigotry and hate speech.

    What happens now? There will be a virulent outcry from the left (facilitated by the media) until Duck Dynasty disappears from television. There will be a firestorm of controversy, but the demise of the Duck Dynasty program is the inevitable endgame. I hope I’m wrong.

    What does this mean? It means that A&E is yet another sector of popular culture in which Christian views about sexual norms are not allowed. The cultural space for our views is shrinking rapidly, and there are people who won’t stop shrinking the space until there’s no space left at all.

    What does A&E’s suspension of Phil Robertson really mean?
    By Lori Twichell on December 19, 2013
    http://www.loritwichell.com/what-does-aes-suspension-of-phil-robertson-really-mean/

    This morning when I visited my Facebook news feed, I was confronted with a lot of beards. They were everywhere. My friends are very upset about the fact that A&E has suspended Phil Robertson because of his remarks about homosexuality. I’m not surprised by A&E’s move but I am surprised by the thought process behind all of it.

    Now let me back up for a minute. Another news story in my Facebook feed this morning was about Barbara Walters and her most fascinating person of the year. In case you didn’t know, she chose Hillary Clinton. This stunned me. What has Hillary done in 2013 to make her more fascinating? I could have believed it when she stood by her man during his Presidential years. I even could have believed it when she was running for President. But right now? This is a lame duck move by Barbara Walters. And I mean that literally. Barbara says she is retiring and her choice shows a good reason why it’s time. She’s out of touch.

    So when you partner Barbara Walters and this choice of Hillary as the most fascinating woman of the year with A&E’s supposed punishment of Phil Robertson, what do you get?

    Proof positive the general media is completely out of touch with reality.

    As I see it (This is just my opinion. Everyone on the Interweb has one of those. You happened to land at mine.) the media has been in charge of shaping EVERYTHING in our society for so long that they don’t realize they aren’t doing that anymore. The Internet has stripped away that power and control. That is very clear. A decade or more ago, Phil’s program might have been on the air but NO ONE would have known that A&E was censoring “In Jesus Name” out of the prayers on the show. That happened now because an internet news source reported it, everyone else picked it up and the news spread. You didn’t see ABC or NBC covering that in their news stories did you? Nope. Because they have tunnel vision. For years upon years we’ve allowed this talking box in our homes that tells us what to wear and what to think and how to believe. The shows that have been broadcast into your home and my home have led us to believe that the world is what they say is. The mainstream media has done this for so long, they’ve begun believing it themselves. And now, when the rest of us aren’t on board, they’re still trying to drive the train down those same tracks. It’s not going to work.

    This morning, I’m getting a good laugh out of A&E thinking that their suspension of Phil Robertson is going to mean much of anything. Christians are angry right now. Very angry. They’re looking for someone that they can support. The Chick-Fil-A experience from this summer is proof of that. It didn’t take but seconds for the news to break on this story before people were nearly rabidly supporting Phil.

    A&E, you’ve built a program around a solid, Bible based family. Admittedly, the crazy is what kept the show on the air the first season. Not having to worry that our kids might accidentally get a murder or pornography in their viewing is what kept the show on the air. As the Robertsons espoused those VERY SAME CHRISTIAN BELIEFS, the show’s numbers grew because Christians found someone on television that they could identify with. It wasn’t the camo and the beards. It was the Bible and God. You built a program around a Godly family and then got angry when that Bible believing man stood up and spoke his Bible believing mind in response to a direct question that was designed to confront those very same beliefs.

    Oh and one last thing to consider. This guy right here doesn’t care whether he’s on tv or not. He skipped filming with Barbara Walters in order to go duck hunting. (Based on her Hillary choices, we can all now agree that the man made a wise choice. ) However, if you think taking him off of the air is going to hurt him or their business or their family, you’re grossly mistaken. This television program isn’t their treasure. That’s been stored somewhere else and this whole family is at peace with that reality.

    • mazeycat
      December 19, 2013 at 9:57 PM

      All these “angry Christians” should stop and think about what they are supporting using the name of a god who promoted peace and love and universal brotherhood. I know a LOT of people would LIKE to focus on Robertson’s comments about homosexuality because that is still a very divisive issue in American society today. But what about his comments about African Americans being better off before the Civil Rights Movement and under JIm Crow? What about that? He never saw no beatings or lynchings just a’ singin and a’ pickin? So they must never have happened, right? I guess he never heard about no church bombings or assasinations on the radio or tv either, huh? Revolting. He sounds like some caricature of antebellum white patriarchy talking about how happy the slaves were working in the singing their spirituals. LIKE EXACTLY LIKE THAT. It’s nauseating anyone is defending him. WHY??? Because he prays at the dinner table? Who cares about the outward forms when what is inside is intolerance not love and light? The NAACP called his words dangerous and REVISIONIST and that was spot on. Does he have the RIGHT to think that way? Sure. It’s a free country. His speech is protected, just like the Neo Fascists who claim the Holocaust was faked have the right to their views. Do I have the right to think he is an ignorant (willfully ignorant at that) scumbag for thinking that way? Hells yus. Free speech isn’t a free pass. You have the right to hold offensive views, and I have the right to be offended by them. And A&E SURE as hell has the right to refuse to have their network associated with his garbage.

      • mazeycat
        December 19, 2013 at 10:00 PM

        *fields

  19. Laram
    December 19, 2013 at 8:56 PM

    Fame, pleazzze compile a Famewhorgas cookbook! All of these recipes’ here are awesome!

    • December 19, 2013 at 9:34 PM

      I like the idea, Lara! Everyone, please keep posting your favorite recipes…

      On an unrelated another topic, Melissa was ranked “one of the hottest reality TV stars of 2013″ by OK magazine:

      http://okmagazine.com/photos/the-23-hottest-reality-stars-ever/photo/1000885231/

      Melissa Gorga ‏@melissagorga 13 Dec
      TY! xo RT @auzsinggirl305: @melissagorga ranked one of the hottest reality tv stars of 2013 😍👏💃yayaayay GO MELISSSA !

      Melissa Gorga ‏@melissagorga 14 Dec
      Ty! RT @OKMagazine: Presenting the 23 hottest reality stars EVER. We’re talking to you @MelissaGorga and @RyanLochte: http://okmag.co/1cHd4B6

      • December 21, 2013 at 10:19 AM

        The only title’s she can take are based on her superficial appearance. She’ll never be “most loved”, ”most popular”, ”highest paid” HW, ever!

  20. December 19, 2013 at 10:05 PM

    I’ve made this dish a few times, and I really like it, so I thought I’d share it with you all. (I use beef round; I’ve never made it with the mushrooms or water chestnuts, but I plan on adding them the next time).

    PEPPER STEAK

    Serving Size: 4

    1 pound beef round or chuck (fat trimmed)
    1/4 cup soy sauce
    1 clove garlic
    1/2 teaspoon ground ginger (or 1 1/2 teaspoons of fresh ginger)
    1/4 cup cooking oil
    1 cup green onion, sliced thin (or yellow onion, sliced thin)
    1 cup green bell peppers, cut in 3/4″ cubes
    2 stalks celery, sliced thin (optional)
    4 ounces mushrooms, sliced (optional)
    8 ounces water chestnuts, canned, sliced (optional)
    2 tomatoes, cut into wedges (seeds removed, if desired)
    salt and pepper to taste
    1 cup water
    1 tablespoon cornstarch
    cooked rice (4 servings)

    Cut beef across grain into thin strips, 1/8-inch thick (partially freeze steak to firm, if desired, for easier cutting). Combine soy sauce, garlic, ginger. Add beef. Toss and set aside while preparing vegetables.

    Heat oil in large frying pan or wok. On high heat, add beef and toss until browned. If meat is not tender, cover and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes over low heat until tender.

    Turn up heat up and add vegetables, except the tomatoes. Toss until vegetables are tender crisp, about 10 minutes.

    Mix cornstarch with water. Add to pan; stir and cook until thickened.

    Add tomatoes and heat through.

    Serve over rice.

    You can prepare the beef ahead and refrigerate, and then finish cooking later.

    • December 20, 2013 at 12:19 PM

      My hubby will love this!

    • Laram
      December 20, 2013 at 9:43 PM

      Yum!!!!

  21. December 19, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    UPDATE 1/15/2014:

    Considering that most of the 11.8 million viewers of the show fall under the later demographic, A&E backtracked.

    “We at A&E Networks expressed our disappointment with his statements in the article, and reiterate that they are not views we hold,” a rep said in a Dec. 27 statement.

    “But ‘Duck Dynasty’ is not a show about one man’s views. It resonates with a large audience because it is a show about family … a family that America has come to love. As you might have seen in many episodes, they come together to reflect and pray for unity, tolerance and forgiveness.”

    http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/tv-movies/duck-dynasty-season-premiere-air-outrage-simmers-article-1.1580617

    UPDATE 12/28/2013:

    The “Duck Dynasty” family says they are excited to return to work after A&E Network announced December 27, 2013, it would resume filming their hit show with Phil Robertson next spring in a reversal of its decision last week to suspend him for comments he made about homosexuality. In a statement released late Friday afternoon, A&E said: “While Phil’s comments made in the (GQ) interview reflect his personal views based on his own beliefs, and his own personal journey, he and his family have publicly stated they regret the ‘coarse language’ he used and the misinterpretation of his core beliefs based only on the article. He also made it clear he would ‘never incite or encourage hate.’” The network added: “Duck Dynasty is not a show about one man’s views. It resonates with a large audience because it is a show about family, a family that America has come to love. As you might have seen in many episodes, they come together to reflect and pray for unity, tolerance and forgiveness. These are three values that we at A&E Networks also feel strongly about. So after discussions with the Robertson family, as well as consulting with numerous advocacy groups, A&E has decided to resume filming Duck Dynasty later this spring with the entire Robertson family.”

    http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2013/12/28/duck-dynasty-to-resume-filming-with-phil-robertson-ae-announces/

    The Robertson family issued an official statement in response to A&E’s decision to suspend Phil Robertson indefinitely, which followed the patriarch’s controversial interview with GQ. The statement indicates the family “cannot imagine the show going forward without our patriarch at the helm.” The statement says they are in discussions with A&E “to see what that means for the future of Duck Dynasty”:

    The following is the statement, issued on December 19th on their website:

    We want to thank all of you for your prayers and support. The family has spent much time in prayer since learning of A&E’s decision. We want you to know that first and foremost we are a family rooted in our faith in God and our belief that the Bible is His word. While some of Phil’s unfiltered comments to the reporter were coarse, his beliefs are grounded in the teachings of the Bible. Phil is a Godly man who follows what the Bible says are the greatest commandments: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart” and “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Phil would never incite or encourage hate.We are disappointed that Phil has been placed on hiatus for expressing his faith, which is his constitutionally protected right.We have had a successful working relationship with A&E but, as a family, we cannot imagine the show going forward without our patriarch at the helm. We are in discussions with A&E to see what that means for the future of Duck Dynasty. Again, thank you for your continued support of our family.

    http://duckcommander.com/news/robertson-family-offical-statement

    The following are excerpts from Phil’s GQ interview:

    There is their faith, which plays no small role here. During the family’s initial negotiations about the show with A&E, Jase told me, “the three no-compromises were faith, betrayal of family members, and duck season.” That refusal to betray their faith or one another has been a staple of every media article about the Robertson family. It’s their elevator pitch, and it has made them into ideal Christian icons: beloved for staking out a bit of holy ground within the mostly secular, often downright sinful, pop culture of America.

    Phil calls himself a Bible-thumper, and holy shit, he thumps that Bible hard enough to ring the bell at a county-fair test of strength. If you watch Duck Dynasty, you can hear plenty of it in the nondenominational supper-table prayer the family recites at the end of every episode, and in the show’s no-cussing, no-blaspheming tone. But there are more things Phil would like to say—“controversial” things, as he puts it to me—that don’t make the cut. (This March, for instance, he told the Christian-oriented Sports Spectrum magazine that he didn’t approve of A&E editing out “in Jesus” from a family prayer scene, even though A&E says that the phrase has been uttered in at least seventeen episodes.)

    The Duck Dynasty origin story is the mighty river from which all other Robertson-family stories flow. And it is an awesome story, one that improves the more it is told, so here is my stab at it: Phil Robertson grew up bone poor in the northwest corner of this state—a place where Cajun redneck culture and Ozark redneck culture intersect—to a manic-depressive mother and a roughneck father… “I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person. Not once. Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash. We’re going across the field…. They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’—not a word!… Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”

    Out here in these woods, without any cameras around, Phil is free to say what he wants. Maybe a little too free. He’s got lots of thoughts on modern immorality, and there’s no stopping them from rushing out. Like this one: “It seems like, to me, a vagina—as a man—would be more desirable than a man’s anus. That’s just me. I’m just thinking: There’s more there! She’s got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I’m saying? But hey, sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.”

    “We’re Bible-thumpers who just happened to end up on television,” Phil tells me. “You put in your article that the Robertson family really believes strongly that if the human race loved each other and they loved God, we would just be better off. We ought to just be repentant, turn to God, and let’s get on with it, and everything will turn around.”

    What does repentance entail? Well, in Robertson’s worldview, America was a country founded upon Christian values (Thou shalt not kill, etc.), and he believes that the gradual removal of Christian symbolism from public spaces has diluted those founding principles. (He and Si take turns going on about why the Ten Commandments ought to be displayed outside courthouses.) He sees the popularity of Duck Dynasty as a small corrective to all that we have lost.

    “Everything is blurred on what’s right and what’s wrong,” he says. “Sin becomes fine.”

    What, in your mind, is sinful?

    “Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men,” he says. Then he paraphrases Corinthians: “Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers—they won’t inherit the kingdom of God. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.”

    As far as Phil is concerned, he was literally born again. Old Phil—the guy with the booze and the pills—died a long time ago, and New Phil sees no need to apologize for him: “We never, ever judge someone on who’s going to heaven, hell. That’s the Almighty’s job. We just love ’em, give ’em the good news about Jesus—whether they’re homosexuals, drunks, terrorists. We let God sort ’em out later, you see what I’m saying?”

    As we speak, there’s a film crew outside the house, prepping for a State Farm ad that the family will be shooting here on the property tomorrow. The Robertsons receive more than 500 media requests a day, and Willie had to negotiate down to four shooting days a week with A&E just so the family would have a bit of breathing room. Phil knows it won’t last. He can already see that the end is near, and he’s prepared for it.

    “Let’s face it,” he says. “Three, four, five years, we’re out of here. You know what I’m saying? It’s a TV show. This thing ain’t gonna last forever. No way.”

    When the show runs its course and the production trucks drive off the Robertson property for good, there will be nothing keeping Phil from his greater mission. He could step back if he felt like it, given that he’s now a very wealthy man. He could stay in these woods and live out the rest of his days hunting. But he has a flock now. He and the other Robertson men happily tour the country, giving speeches and hosting Bible studies. I ask Jep Robertson later on if the second generation of Robertson men shares Phil’s views on sin and morality. “We’re not quite as outspoken as my dad, but I’m definitely in line,” he says. “If somebody asks, I tell ’em what the Bible says.”

    When Uncle Si went to Conway, Arkansas, recently for a paid appearance, 20,000 people showed up. It led the local news that night in Little Rock. The show is merely the platform. The end goal is to save souls. And the Robertson family is more than happy to sacrifice a little privacy out here in the woods—visitors regularly congregate outside Phil’s security gate hoping for a glance at the family— to spread the good word.

    “If you simply put your faith in Jesus coming down in flesh, through a human being, God becoming flesh living on the earth, dying on the cross for the sins of the world, being buried, and being raised from the dead—yours and mine and everybody else’s problems will be solved. And the next time we see you, we will say: ‘You are now a brother. Our brother.’ So then we look at you totally different then. See what I’m saying?”

    It’s the direction he would like to point everyone: back to the woods. Back to the pioneer spirit. Back to God. “Why don’t we go back to the old days?” he asked me at one point.

    http://www.gq.com/entertainment/television/201401/duck-dynasty-phil-robertson

    The following is A&E’s official announcement about Phil’s suspension:

    “Duck Dynasty” dad Phil Robertson has been placed on indefinite suspension by the A&E Network following his recent comments on homosexuality, the network announced Wednesday night.

    “We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson’s comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the series Duck Dynasty,” the network said in a statement. His personal views in no way reflect those of A&E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely.”

    I’m reminded of what Oprah Winfrey (the richest woman on the Forbes 400) had to say about generations of old people (who she views as racists) – her comments below did not end her TV network or stop her from being recognized by Obama for the Presidential Medal of Freedom:

    “As long as people can be judged by the color of their skin, the problem is not solved…. There are still generations of people, older people, who were born and bred and marinated in it – in that prejudice and racism – and they just have to die.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wK8Eb4oV1CI

    • mazeycat
      December 19, 2013 at 11:15 PM

      She wasn’t advocating killing them personally. That would have DEFFO ruined her career. LOL.

    • elemcee
      December 20, 2013 at 12:44 AM

      I will never watch Duck Dynasty again. Do I care if A&E takes it off the air? Nope. But, Phil really ought to go back to college and be correct in the “info” he is spewing. Wow. He is incorrect in almost everything he said in that interview. And, I do not mean the Bible stuff, which usually involves “interpretation”.

      • Daisymay
        December 20, 2013 at 8:08 AM

        Unfortunately, that “sermon” that was spewed by Denny Burke (up thread) comes from his place as an assistant professor at a bible college! Doesn’t say much for the quality of knowledge being offered there….

        • Jeannie5233
          December 20, 2013 at 12:35 PM

          Isn’t it interesting how this proves that some of the best education we can receive is not from school, books, or professors. It proves one should always question and not necessarily accept.

          Some of the best knowledge we can glean is when we open up our minds and listen to our hearts and our conscience. We learn some pf life’s lessons best that way.

  22. black enga
    December 20, 2013 at 2:18 AM

    “I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person. Not once. Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash. We’re going across the field…. They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’—not a word!… Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”

    I’m reminded of what Oprah Winfrey (the richest woman on the Forbes 400) had to say about generations of old people (who she views as racists) – her comments below did not end her TV network or stop her from being recognized by Obama for the Presidential Medal of Freedom:

    “As long as people can be judged by the color of their skin, the problem is not solved…. There are still generations of people, older people, who were born and bred and marinated in it – in that prejudice and racism – and they just have to die.”

    WOW Fame, I’m truly disappointed in Phil, Oprah, and You. You because you read what Phil said and you were reminded of something equally as awful that somebody who is Black said. And then to say that they were not fired because of their views or remarks but recognized by the President. They are both wrong in my eyes. But for you to make a tit for tat comparison, wow!

    I have never viewed racism as a pissing contest. I’m totally shocked that you would.

    • December 20, 2013 at 4:13 AM

      Hey black enga. I’m not disappointed in either Phil or Oprah. Their life experiences are not like mine, so they see things through different models. I compared what they said to show that we all can be offensive without intending to be.

      • black enga
        December 20, 2013 at 5:27 AM

        I took it a little to close heart, while I like both of them for different reasons I guess I expected better from them. I’m sorry for taking your comparison the wrong way. I’m a little raw because of the racist comments that have been brought up in the media lately. It has been a jagged pill to swallow.

        • elemcee
          December 20, 2013 at 7:49 AM

          It has been horrifying, Enga! The media have really been on a downward spiral.

          How is your sweet grandbaby? I hope she is continuing to improve. I have been so busy getting ready for the Holidays, I have not had time to read the blog lately.

          • black enga
            December 20, 2013 at 9:10 AM

            I know with everything going on it’s so hard. I didn’t want to say anything but last week Virtues meds for her seizures stopped working. They increased the phenobarbital but it wouldn’t work. The kept her for a few hours in the ER and sent her home. That morning she started having them again. then they stopped. Her mom wanted to run some errands so I watched her in the car. I soon as my daughter left she had one then another and another after twenty I lost count. I was numb I didn’t know what to do so I held her little hand and started praying. It was so hard to watch it happen and not be able to do anything to stop it. I cant explain how that felt as I cant put it into words. When her mom came back they stopped suddenly. We called her Neurologist and he had us bring her in for a ECG I think that’s what it’s called. She didn’t have another one after the incident with me. Which was a blessing. They started her on another medicine to go along with the first one. She’s been okay every since but I am a basket case.

            This sweet little innocent baby whose only crime was trying to be born. It;s been so hard not to strangle her Dr. who could have prevented this tragedy by giving her a C-section when I asked him to. I’m so hurt, angry, frustrated and torn up inside I don’t know what to do. The tears wont stop, my heart wont stop aching so Ive been sitting at home alone as I have closed myself off. I cant face my daughter because I don’t want to upset her with my anguish. I haven’t seen them since this happened, I’m afraid to go see them because I don’t think I could handle seeing that again. But my daughter needs me. Oh my God she’s so strong to be able to deal with this day in and day out. She stares at her so lovingly and with total adoration. I’m so afraid if anything would happen to Virtue I know I would lose my daughter. Before she was born my daughter did not want to live and has threaten suicide because she said she never wanted to be here. I know that precious child is the only reason she still here. I feel so weak and pathetic because just dealing with it for one day made me run for the hills. God please help me and give me strength.

            OMG elemcee, it’s to much to bare, I cant breathe now the tears are burning my lungs because my youngest daughter is getting ready for school and I don’t want her to hear me crying. I keep telling myself to breathe just breathe, you can do this. My God if my daughter and Virtue can be so strong and endure this then I must be also. elemcee please pray for me and my family. I really really need your prayers. I’m so sorry to burden you with this, I really am but you asking about Virtue and caring has truly touched my heart, thank you. Maybe this good cry is what I needed.

            GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY

            • Detroitrockcity
              December 20, 2013 at 9:29 AM

              My dearest blk enga, you are one of the sweetest, lovley souls on here!! Don’t doubt your heart,you can only do so much!! Please keep the faith,, you are never alone 🙂

            • Jeannie5233
              December 20, 2013 at 12:24 PM

              Black Enga – I admire your strength so much – I truly mean that. Please consider Virtue, your daughter, and yourself hugged. You are all in my prayers.

              • black enga
                December 21, 2013 at 4:05 PM

                Thank You Jeannie, (((((HUGS AND BLESSINGS)))))

            • kayswhims
              December 20, 2013 at 5:54 PM

              Dear sweet black enga,
              You are not weak, you are overwhelmed.

              Prayer for angels to minister to you and constantly remind you at every turn, that God is not the author of fear.

              Look to the Hills by Tony Terry
              What do you say
              When you don’t know what to say
              What do you ask when
              You don’t know what to ask
              What do you do
              When you don’t know what to do

              I will look to the hills for my help
              My help cometh from the Lord

              What do I pray
              When I don’t know what to pray
              How do I smile when
              Trouble gets in the way
              What do I do
              When I don’t know what to do

              I will look to the hills for my help
              My help cometh from the Lord

              All of my help, ooh my help

              I will look to the hills for my help
              My help cometh from the Lord
              Oh my help, all of my help
              My help

              My help is coming
              My help is coming

              More love is coming
              More love is coming

              Peace is coming
              peace is coming

              More joy is coming
              Joy is coming

              Deliverance is coming
              Deliverance is coming
              Deliverance is coming
              Deliverance is coming

              It’s on the way
              It’s on the way
              It’s on the way
              It’s on the way

              It may not come when you want it
              but it’s on the way
              I said it may not come when you want it
              but it’s on the way

              Your deliverance,
              Your healing,
              Your breakthrough,
              It’s on the way

              I will look to the hills for my help
              My help cometh from the Lord

              From the Lord
              From the Lord
              From the Lord

              http://www.ukapologetics.net/1toomuch.html

            • December 20, 2013 at 10:00 PM

              Prayers continuing to go up for you.

              • black enga
                December 20, 2013 at 10:15 PM

                And mine for you msjulesaz, I hope that you are mending well. God Bless and keep you and yours.

            • elemcee
              December 20, 2013 at 11:59 PM

              Oh Enga, I will pray for you, Virtue, and your daughter always! I am so sorry that your family is in such pain. I wish I could say something to make it easier, but nothing will. I think of Sweet Virtue often. The children really are the most important thing, I wish we all could love each other for their sake. I will keep you and your family in my heart always! God bless you and your family!

              • black enga
                December 21, 2013 at 3:45 PM

                Just you asking about her means so much to me elemcee, Thank you for your kind words and prayers. Praying that God Blesses and keeps your family Too! 🙂

            • December 21, 2013 at 10:26 AM

              Black Enga, I’m so sorry your family has to go through this. I’ll say prayer’s for you and your family.

              • black enga
                December 21, 2013 at 4:02 PM

                CEEESEEE!!!!! Where have you been,lol. It’s been hard to deal with at times but all the prayers and kind words you guys have given me have made a world of difference. I feel better now (thanks Kay for the poem!) and I have a brighter outlook on my life to which I thank all of you.

                ceeeseee I hope you and your family are well. I wanted to tell you something. My car has been on a flat for two weeks and it wasn’t because I couldn’t fix it. I was in the dumps and using that as an excuse to not face my fears. Anyway Ive been catching the metro to get around. While sitting on it one day out of the blue I thought about how your friend impersonates TB and I laughed so hard, I couldn’t stop. People turned around to look at me like I was crazy,lol. I wanted to ask if anybody watched RHWONJ so they could share in my laughter but thought I better not. That was the highlight of mt day!

                Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas!

                • December 22, 2013 at 4:12 PM

                  I’ve been busy with “Christmas” stuff! Yesterday was a quiet day for me and my daughter’s dog! Her dog “Bella” is attached to me and when everyone’s home she tends to get annoyed with them. Thank-you for making me feel so loved! I had tears in my eye’s yesterday reading about Virtue’s struggle. I’ve had relative’s who had health problems at birth where they went into seizure’s. My daughter has three older sister’s in their 20’s and one suffered from seizure’s until she was in grade school. The pediatrician told her dad that some kid’s out grow them. I hope that is the same for Virtue. You are such a loving person, with such strong faith that I do know that God will be with you every step. I wish I could tell you Virtue will get better, only God knows that answer, but I can tell you that your not alone.

                  I’m glad my friends sense of humor can make you laugh. She’s an amazing person who had a stroke in her early 40’s. By the time she was 50 y.o. she went back to school and became a nurse. She said if it wasn’t for nurses she wouldn’t have made it back stronger than she was before! Her high society husband used to beat her and I’ll say one of the punches he gave her, or one kick, caused her health problems. After she came back, healthier than ever, she divorced the SOB! I know you can relate to that struggle. Sometimes, both of us will laugh until were red in the face, and she’ll say, “My ex-husband hated it when I would laugh! So, now when I do I make sure I make the most of it!” I asked her if I could record her doing her “TB” and she begged me not to. I’m laughing right now thinking of her! She went to Wisconsin to spend Christmas with her daughter. Black Enga, I hope and pray that you and your family have the best Christmas this year! Love you!

          • Detroitrockcity
            December 20, 2013 at 9:12 AM

            Hey!! Everyone needs to calm down and take a chill pill!! We are all from one maker,believe or not :)?! Weather its from dust or angels? We are here for a reason; ) Can’t we just make the best of it??What ever the answer is right or wrong, nobody knows the real deal until we go before our own Judge!

    • Maze
      December 20, 2013 at 10:49 AM

      Oprah’s statements aren’t racist, they’re callous. She’s was trying to sound intellectual. In Sociology it’s called culture death, when the last holdovers of a particular cultural era die and sea changes in mores and beliefs are complete and old patterns of societal behavior are forgotten or abandoned. Culture death is neither bad nor good in and of itself. It can be either. Oprah sounded like an idiot. She doesn’t have the academic background knowledge to apply Sociology to ANY rw subject. Culture death doesn’t REALLY work that way. It’s not a literal term ffs. But it wasn’t racist. Just stupid and needlessly harsh. Robertson’s statements were racist. Dangerously innaccurate Historical revisionism. It literally nauseates me to read that bs about how HAPPY African Americans were under Jim Crow and know that there are people out there who are SUPPORTING this ignorance. I support his right to say it, and MY right to not have him on my tv screen. This is a role model? Because he quotes the Bible and says “in Jesus’ name” a bunch? Who cares??? There’s been a lot of terrible ideas promoted under Jesus’ name. Things that Jesus would have rejected utterly. Outward forms mean NOTHING. It’s empty ritual. His words are full of judgment and intolerance. He’s worried about the mote in his neighbor’s eye. This is not someone who remotely understands the teachings of Jesus on an internal level, but I guess who cares? He prays at the dinner table and that’s all that counts. How can people be so superficial?? Or is it that on some level deep down his supporters agree with his views on race and sexuality? Mind = boggled.

      • NinaK
        December 20, 2013 at 11:12 AM

        Maze, loved your post — a powerful, insightful, and well-articulated comment. Thank you.

        • Maze
          December 20, 2013 at 12:49 PM

          Thanks. < 3 I really don't understand the mindset that because we HAVE the right to free speech (which FTR there are limitations on) that there are no consequences for making offensive statements. Or SHOULD be no consequences. And I'm tired of people who call themselves Christians cloaking bigotry and intolerance under Jesus' name. Jesus never said anything REALLY negative about anyone except rich people and money lenders in the Temple. They should stop cherry picking shiz out of the Old Testament to support their own prejudices and listen to what Jesus HIMSELF actually preached. Unconditional love and tolerance.

      • Jeannie5233
        December 20, 2013 at 12:20 PM

        Maze – thank you. You spoke to everything I have had on my mind and articulated it perfectly. It is mind-boggling and a sad commentary.

        I am particularly in agreement with you about using Jesus to propagate what is hatred and complete ignorance. I have said several times here on this board – there are two types of ignorance; legitimately having no knowledge or having knowlege but making the conscious choice to disregard it.

        To lump being gay with bestiality – well, that is a blatant example of what Phil Robertson knows, or should I say doesn’t know, about homosexuality. And while some strides have been made, this is an example of just how far we, as a society, have to go before the LGBT community is not only fully accepted, but much more importantly, understood.

        Go to the local chapter of Trevor’s Project. Meet with some of these people – most of them young, frightened, and wishing with all their might – who would give anything including thir life – that they weren’t gay. Listen to their stories of rejection from their parents and their families, the bullying, the suicide attempts, the self-destructive behavior all stemming from the complete and utter lack of education, understanding, compassion, and an unwillingness to accept those who are different from their fellow human beings. It is a disgrace how they are treated.

        Yes, Phil Robertson has freedom of speech. But with that freedom comes responsibility and consequences. A&E has every right to protect their brand. And the public has the right to exercise their freedom to not want Phil Robertson on their screen.

        It’s relatively easy to pass judgement or form an opinion based on ignorance. “There but for the grace of God go I.” Maybe more people should think about that statement and understand what it REALLY means.

        • Maze
          December 20, 2013 at 12:55 PM

          Exactly. Jesus’ name is the very LAST name on earth that should be used to condemn anyone for ANYTHING. Except maybe making money off of others’ faith, the ONE thing I can remember Jesus himself getting really fired up about. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone sounds pretty damn straightforward to me.

  23. December 20, 2013 at 4:56 PM

    I happen to be one of those ignorant Christian’s. I support Phil, but don’t agree with all that he said, but they are his beliefs and I am certainly not going to change them.

    I love the show because it’s family centric and does show they have a good foundation in God. Are they my beliefs, no, but I have many Christian friends that I disagree with. I still love them and we have learned not to touch certain topics and that’s ok.

    As for his Jim Crow comment, it show’s his old way of thinking and Oprah indicated, until a few generation’s go away it won’t continue to change for the better as the old the thoughts/beliefs slowly die out. Unfortunately, something new typically will replace it.

    • elemcee
      December 21, 2013 at 12:17 AM

      Jules, I support your right to support Phil! Just cuz I was offended does not mean I think you should be. I wish nothing bad for he and his family. I definitely recommend he do some reading of history books. (And, yes, I should read some grammar books, and some history books, and just some books in general, been so busy!)

      Someone mentioned above that your health has been poor. I hope you are feeling well and can enjoy the Holidays!

      • mzjulesaz
        December 21, 2013 at 9:18 AM

        Thanks! I’m starting to get better! I just cannot wait to walk independently again. Merry Christmas!

  24. December 20, 2013 at 7:35 PM

    Phil Robertson quotes:

    On Homosexuals
    “Women with women, men with men. They committed indecent acts with one another, and they received in themselves the due penalty for their perversions,” Robertson said. “They’re full of murder, envy, strife, hatred. They are insolent, arrogant, God-haters. They are heartless, they are faithless, they are senseless, they are ruthless. They invent ways of doing evil.”

    Video added by Fame (quote above from the sermon below around the 17 minute mark):

    On Religion and the Nazis
    “All you have to do is look at any society where there is no Jesus. I’ll give you four: Nazis, no Jesus. Look at their record. Uh, Shintos? They started this thing in Pearl Harbor. Any Jesus among them? None. Communists? None. Islamists? Zero. That’s eighty years of ideologies that have popped up where no Jesus was allowed among those four groups. Just look at the records as far as murder goes among those four groups.”

    On Louisiana Before Civil Rights
    “I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person. Not once. Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash. We’re going across the field. … They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’ — not a word! … Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”

    On Who’s Heaven-Bound
    “Don’t be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers — they won’t inherit the kingdom of God. Don’t deceive yourself. It’s not right.”

    On Health Care
    “Temporary is all you’re going to get with any kind of health care, except the health care I’m telling you about. That’s eternal health care, and it’s free. … I’ve opted to go with eternal health care instead of blowing money on these insurance schemes.”

    On Jesus
    “If you simply put your faith in Jesus coming down in flesh, through a human being, God becoming flesh living on the earth, dying on the cross for the sins of the world, being buried, and being raised from the dead — yours and mine and everybody else’s problems will be solved. And the next time we see you, we will say: ‘You are now a brother. Our brother.’ So then we look at you totally different then. See what I’m saying?”

    I read these quotes and I am appalled. Phil Robertson is of my generation – I am a high school graduate and educated mostly through life experience. I was raised a Roman Catholic and while I may have disagreement with some teachings and doctrine of the Church, I do believe in God, Jesus, and His teachings. I also believe that God is all-forgiving. I believe the Bible – both the New Testament and the Old – is subjective and was purposely intended to be. It explains the reason for the many interpretations and religions that have evolved – all from one book.

    My point – regardless of what Oprah Winfrey may say about older generations “dying off” and the old ways of “thinking” along with them, we all still have a choice. There is no reason why we, as humans, should ever stop learning – ever stop questioning – or evolving – to become better people regardless of our age or what generation we belong to. To be so profoundly entrenched in our own beliefs and judgements without a willingness to be open to others’ cripples our own growth.

    While I agree, of course, that Mr. Robertson is entitled to his beliefs, if he makes the choice to express them as such, then he should be prepared to have accountability for them. Some of those beliefs, as stated above by him, I personally find highly offensive and at odds with what God has taught us. To say that homosexuals are “full of murder, envy, strife, hatred. They are insolent, arrogant, God-haters. They are heartless, they are faithless, they are senseless, they are ruthless. They invent ways of doing evil.” is, in my mind, not just ignorance but complete and total bigotry. Given his celebrity, those words just adds fuel to the fire already burning that is filled with hatred towards the LGBT community.

    I have many gay friends and relatives. I believe with all my heart that God accepts them and that most of them will see Him well before many of my straight acquaintances. The last I heard, no one should be making the determination as to who will and who will not inherit the kingdom of God – except God himself.

    • Maze
      December 21, 2013 at 2:05 AM

      +10,000. < 3 He's not even that old. My mom is his age. Also white trash. My grandma used to hire her and her brothers out to pick tomatoes for the local farmers alongside the migrant workers in the Summers. She has never for a second claimed that that experience has given her any special insight or right to pronounce upon the experience of migrant farm workers in the 1950's. We are all a product of our environment, the time and place, we grew up in, and we all have the power to break that conditioning, to rise above.

    • Anonymous
      December 27, 2013 at 12:38 PM

      Phil paraphrased bible verses about ‘sexual immorality’ in that video when he should have directly quoted from the bible, and he should have reminded the audience to love you enemies, do good to them that hate you (Matthew chapter 5)…..hate the sin, love the sinner (Jude 1:23, Matthew 5:43-44, Matthew 6:14-15, Romans 12:9, John 3:16-17, Romans 5:8, Proverbs 6:16-19, 2 Corinthians 5:21, Romans 1:26-27, Romans 1:18).

      Romans Chapter 1
      18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
      19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
      20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
      21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
      22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
      23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
      24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:
      25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
      26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:
      27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.
      28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
      29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
      30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
      31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:
      32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

      1 Corinthians Chapter 6
      9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
      10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
      11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
      12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.
      13 Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.
      14 And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power.
      15 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid.
      16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.
      17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.
      18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.
      19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
      20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

      Leviticus Chapter 18
      22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
      23 Neither shalt thou lie with any beast to defile thyself therewith: neither shall any woman stand before a beast to lie down thereto: it is confusion.
      24 Defile not ye yourselves in any of these things: for in all these the nations are defiled which I cast out before you:
      25 And the land is defiled: therefore I do visit the iniquity thereof upon it, and the land itself vomiteth out her inhabitants.
      26 Ye shall therefore keep my statutes and my judgments, and shall not commit any of these abominations; neither any of your own nation, nor any stranger that sojourneth among you:
      27 (For all these abominations have the men of the land done, which were before you, and the land is defiled;)

      Mark Chapter 7
      18 And he saith unto them, Are ye so without understanding also? Do ye not perceive, that whatsoever thing from without entereth into the man, it cannot defile him;
      19 Because it entereth not into his heart, but into the belly, and goeth out into the draught, purging all meats?
      20 And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man.
      21 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders,
      22 Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness:
      23 All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.

      2 Corinthians Chapter 12
      21 And lest, when I come again, my God will humble me among you, and that I shall bewail many which have sinned already, and have not repented of the uncleanness and fornication and lasciviousness which they have committed.

      Galatians Chapter 5
      16 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.
      17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.
      18 But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law.
      19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
      20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,
      21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
      22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
      23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
      24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
      25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
      26 Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.

      Ephesians Chapter 4
      15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
      16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
      17 This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,
      18 Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:
      19 Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
      20 But ye have not so learned Christ;
      21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:
      22 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;
      23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;
      24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
      25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.
      26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
      27 Neither give place to the devil.

      Matthew Chapter 5
      38 Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth:
      39 But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
      40 And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloke also.
      41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
      42 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.
      43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
      44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
      45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
      46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
      47 And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?
      48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

      Hebrew Chapter 13
      8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

      Romans Chapter 2

      1 Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.
      2 But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things.
      3 And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?
      4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?
      5 But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;
      6 Who will render to every man according to his deeds:
      7 To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life:
      8 But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath,
      9 Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile;
      10 But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile:
      11 For there is no respect of persons with God.

      1 Peter Chapter 4
      1 Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;
      2 That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.
      3 For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries:

      Jude Chapter 1
      1 Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called:
      2 Mercy unto you, and peace, and love, be multiplied.
      3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.
      4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.
      5 I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not.
      6 And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.
      7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
      8 Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.
      9 Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.
      10 But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves.
      11 Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.
      12 These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots;
      13 Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever.
      14 And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints,
      15 To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.
      16 These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words, having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.
      17 But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ;
      18 How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.
      19 These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit.
      20 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost,
      21 Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.
      22 And of some have compassion, making a difference:
      23 And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.
      24 Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,
      25 To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.

  25. kayswhims
    December 20, 2013 at 7:57 PM

    Lemon Chicken and Lemon Fried Rice

    Cook rice and chill overnight in the refrigerator. It helps if you put sauce ingredients in the pan prior to mixing the batter for chicken, and then waiting until the chicken is almost done frying up before you start cooking the sauce. While the oil is heating in the fryer, work on lemon fried rice. I use an electric skillet that can keep it warm til everything else is ready. We serve broccoli or peas on the side.

    Batter for chicken;
    4 Tablespoons of cornstarch
    1/4 cup flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 cup water
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 egg
    1 egg white
    Cut up chicken and put in the bowl of batter. Deep fry at 375 degrees for 6 to 8 minutes. Don’t put too many in at a time or they will stick to each other and make a mess. You want crispy nuggets.

    Lemon Sauce
    1 cup sugar
    2/3 cup water
    2 Tablespoons of cornstarch
    zest from one lemon
    juice from same lemon
    1/4 teaspoon ginger
    1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
    dash of white pepper
    dash salt
    1 tablespoon of butter
    Cook and stir frequently.

    Lemon Fried Rice
    1/2 cup sliced green onions
    1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
    1/4 cup butter
    4 cups cold cooked rice
    2 Tablespoons soy sauce
    2 teaspoons lemon zest
    1/8 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
    Cook onion, butter, and parsley for a minute. On low heat add lemon zest. Break up cooked rice with a fork, add to skillet with the rest of the ingredients. Heat through and stir to coat rice. Keep warm.

  26. black enga
    December 20, 2013 at 8:34 PM

    Thank You Detroit, Jeannie, and Kay. It has been a long tumultuous road and I had became so weary that I stumbled and fell, thanks for being there to lift me up, Thank you for your prayers and kind words,God Bless You all, as you will be in my prayers also.

    As far as Phil, I thought by him being a Christian he had different views other than those he voiced. In his mind they seemed happy but that was a facade that many Blacks had to adhere to in order to survive. The ones back then who voiced their true feelings found themselves hanging from trees or worse. So of course he can say not one of them said anything bad about White people. Why would they?

    I thought he would have a different take on equality. Blacks, LGBT, Atheists and what have you, all have the right to be treated with equality. We are all God’s children. How does he or anyone else have the right to condemn someone for who and what they are? Judging should be left up to God.

    I could use myself as an example. I am a Christian, I’m heterosexual, I try to follow God’s as well as man’s law (by being a law abiding citizen). I try to live a decent life. But some people look at me with contempt because of the color of my skin. What is my crime? Being born Black? I had no choice in the matter neither do they.

    And Oprah, I take what she says with a grain of salt. She has done a lot of good with her platform and I respect her forgiving back. As far as her being an intellectual, ehh, not so much. She lost me a long time ago when she said she didn’t believe Jesus was the only way and started pushing this new age religion propaganda. I feel like she has an agenda just because she is rich and has a lot of influence. Oprah, the all knowing and all powerful, please get over yourself already. Just because SHE says something or SHE promotes someone else saying or doing something doesn’t make it right. No, Oprah is not one of my favorite things (pun intended).

    My mother always said when you know better you do better. I guess I expected these two to know better.

  27. Laram
    December 20, 2013 at 9:43 PM

    Yum!!!!

  28. black enga
    December 21, 2013 at 5:05 PM

    Vanilla Peach Coffee Cake

    Batter:
    2 eggs
    1 C milk
    1/2 C oil
    1 tsp. vanilla
    1/2 C sour cream
    3 C flour
    1 C sugar
    1 tsp. baking powder
    1/2 tsp. salt
    1/2 tsp. baking soda

    Topping:
    5 or 6 large peaches, diced.
    3 Tbsp. butter, melted
    11/4 C brown sugar
    1Tbsp. cinnamon
    2 tsp. nutmeg
    4 Tbsp. flour

    Vanilla Icing:
    1 Tbsp. butter
    1 tsp. vanilla or vanilla bean paste
    3/4 C powdered sugar
    2-3 tsp. heavy cream

    Directions:

    Prepare 9 inch spring form pan with cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350. Beat eggs on medium for 1 minute. Add oil, vanilla, milk and sour cream then beat for another two minutes. In separate bowl, mix flour baking soda, baking powder, salt and sugar. Add this dry mixture to the wet and mix for a few minutes until well incorporated. Do not over mix. Pour the batter into the spring form pan.

    Peach filling: In separate bowl, mix the peaches, melted butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and the flour. Evenly distribute the mixture over the batter.

    Icing: Mix vanilla, powdered sugar and vanilla in a bowl, it will be lumpy so don’t worry. Slowly add heavy cream a little at a time until the frosting is the consistency you like.

    Bake for 1 hour and 5- 10 minutes. I recommend checking this cake after about 55-60 minutes, the add additional time if not done. When a toothpick or skewer poked into the center comes out clean the cake is finished. Let cake cook and then drizzle with icing.

    Link to pic of cake

  29. black enga
    December 21, 2013 at 5:18 PM

    A pregnant ladies cravings,lol.

    24 ice cream sandwiches
    16 ounces of cool whip
    1 jar caramel sundae topping
    1 bag of your favorite candy, coarsely chopped Reeses peanut butter cups
    This great recipe (and many others!) can be found in our cookbook.

    Yep, that’s it.

    Lay half of the ice cream sandwiches (whole) in the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch pan, trimming the last couple to get complete coverage. Top with half of the cool whip, half of the caramel sundae topping and half of the candy. Lay down another layer of ice cream sandwiches. Top with remaining cool whip and spread out evenly with a knife, making a lip around the edge so the sundae topping won’t run out and over the edges. Top with remaining candy, cover and freeze for several hours (or overnight) before serving.

    That’s it.

    Depending on how cold your freezer is, you may need to thaw it on the counter for 10-15 minutes before serving.

    Now, I guess I could have made some homemade ice cream from local milk, baked my own chocolate wafers, whipped up some real whipped cream, made my own caramel sauce and candy.
    But, oh, I would have missed the taste of those store-bought ice cream sandwiches I remember growing up. That, and, I would have pretty much gone insane. This pregnancy has lead to some short-cuts and eating this cake has made the idea of short-cuts much easier to deal with.

    Here is her website for more simply delicious recipes

    http://www.thyhandhathprovided.com/

  30. December 25, 2013 at 9:08 PM

    Alex McCord Opens Up About Faked Scenes On ‘The Real Housewives Of New York’
    Posted on Dec 24, 2013 @ 8:04AM | By Radar Staff
    http://radaronline.com/exclusives/2013/12/reality-tv-fake-set-up-alex-mccord-real-housewives-tamra-barney-kids-simon/

    Following our lid-blowing report on pre-arranged scenes on the Real Housewives of Orange County, former Real Housewives of New York cast member Alex McCord shares her own experiences with the Bravo franchise’s penchant for re-creating history, one take at a time.

    McCord recalled an incident in the show’s first season in which castmate Jill Zarin summoned her to a shindig — which producers threw a wrench into.

    “Jill’s going to call you she’s going to invite you to a Girls’ Night, and ask her if you can bring [husband] Simon [van Kempen] and she’ll say ‘Yes,’” McCord recalled. “Then, full speed ahead as planned, when I showed up to the dinner with Simon, [Ramona Singer] blew a gasket she wasn’t told about any of it in advance, and she reacted honestly to a guy being in the middle of the Girls’ Night!”

    McCord said “another way that they can manipulate is reenacting something that already happened, a do-over.

    “Sometimes these do-overs just go back to catch something significant that happened when the cameras were done filming, but sometimes they can rewrite history. What am I thinking of? I’m thinking of Bethenny Frankel‘s engagement.

    “In real life, she broke the news to me at a crowded bar, in a dark hallway. We were told the audio was no good and, since we have to do it over, why not do it at home? It made for much better reality TV … it made us look good.”

    McCord said she could go on with similar stories “for an entire year and not be done, so let’s put this aside.”

    Watch the video on RadarOnline.com

    As we previously reported, the revelation about Bravo pre-arranging scenes leaked via Simon Barney, the ex-husband of Tamra Barney, who shared revealing info in court docs illustrating the liberties reality stars surrender to Bravo when signing up for the show, with the producers attempting to stage scenes.

  31. December 27, 2013 at 8:30 AM

    Need proof of staged scene? On Courtney Loves Dallas last night, courtney was having an emotional telephone conversation with Matt Nordgren. Apparently it was a long conversation because she had time to change her nail polish from light to dark and back to light in the scene… Then she changed it back to dark for the car ride to fort worth on the same day

  32. November 20, 2014 at 11:30 PM

    Melissa Gorga Feuds With ‘RHONJ’ Newbies During Atlantic City Weekend
    By RadarOnline, Dec 30, 2013

    Feuding sister-in-laws Melissa Gorga and Teresa Giudice have finally teamed up and are showing the new gals a lesson in housewives hierarchy.

    The ladies went to Atlantic City’s Revel Casino for a planned “girls bonding weekend” and, as expected, there was no shortage on drama, sources exclusively told RadarOnline.com.

    According to eyewitnesses, Melissa got into an argument with new girls – twins Nicole and Teresa Napolitano and their friend Amber Marchese – while gambling at the luxury casino.

    “There is a Old Housewives vs. New Housewives feud boiling — and Melissa won’t let these newbies talk sh– about her or her family,” a source exclusively told Radar.

    Another source added: “This was a typical manufactured housewives fighting about who said what behind each other’s back. Amber wants to make a splash so she fought with the twins and Melissa that weekend. She wants to be an actress, so she’s trying to play it up for the cameras.”

    After the gals returned home, Amber was clearly exhausted from all the drama.

    “What a weekend. Not being in my own element makes for one unhappy women. Just shake it off and go. Helps remind me just how wonderful my family is to me. They don’t hurt me and they never make me cry. Just pure happiness, understanding, and love. I pray for everyone to have their own sanctuary,” she wrote on Facebook.

    http://radaronline.com/exclusives/2013/12/melissa-gorga-amber-marchese-old-housewives-vs-new-housewives-feud-rhonj-atlantic-city-revel/

    Jim Marchese Slams Bobby Ciasulli, Spills Real Housewives Of New Jersey Secrets
    By Reality Tea, September 3rd, 2014

    You know, for being such an important guy who has so many important jobs, Jim Marchese sure has a lot of free time to gossip about Real Housewives of New Jersey. Do not even get me started on his Twitter activity. Oy. Most recently, Jim chatted with AfterBuzz TV about all the drama, his friendship with Bobby Ciasulli, the casting process, and more. And he did not hold back!

    When asked if Real Housewives of New Jersey was the first reality TV experience for him and his wife, Amber Marchese, Jim said, “My first. Amber actually appeared on Restaurant Stakeout. But this is my first exposure to the wonderful world of reality TV.”

    “Amber was contacted in February,” continued Jim. “They didn’t really tell us the name of the show at the time or any of the details. We ended up coming on board March/April of 2013. It was exciting for her and a real nice opportunity for me. My role was going to be very limited – just around my wife, around my children, and to help my friend at the time Bobby.”

    How does Jim feel about his edit? “I’d really like to thank all the producers because they portrayed me as such a kind, sweet, loving, gentle person. I’m sure everyone’s seen the sweetest side of me and all the sweet things we do as a family.” He’s obviously being a smart ass. And he thinks he’s funny.

    “In all seriousness, it has been pretty ridiculous,” continued Jim in the interview. “We filmed starting in late November and all the way through February. I’ve just basically seen the choice snippets they’ve used throughout the first four – or actually six – scenes and it’s been a little difficult to watch honestly. I know what really transpired in those situations and I’m very fully aware of what was going on, what didn’t go on, and what the backdrop was. I understand what they’re doing. I’m going to be the villain this year and I’m okay with that. I just wish the people watching the show would understand that that’s my job. I’m the villain this year. It doesn’t mean I’m really an evil person. They could give me a little bit of a break. I’m just trying to have a little fun and trying to keep them entertained.”

    Does Jim blame “bad edit” like every other reality TV star? “I would never put myself in these situations. I had spoken to Bobby about three hours before the [first responder’s] party and he assured me nothing was going to happen and he assured me everyone was in good spirits. If I had an inkling that there was going to be an issue, we wouldn’t have shown up.”

    “I’m not going to say I blame editing or I don’t blame editing,” continued Jim. “They have to compress a lot of activity into a very short time period. The producers don’t have the ability to show you all of the backdrop, all of what occurred, so it’s really hard to say. I think that there’s a lot of people out there who understand the idea that my wife’s hair was just pulled out – I was pretty angry. And I think they can appreciate the fact that if I didn’t want to go bowling with a bunch of complete strangers, that’s not an unusual thing.”

    Jim went on to complain about things which were NOT shown from the party. “The home audience didn’t see Joe Gorga swinging his finger in my face and calling me names and calling me an asshole and a jerkoff. They cut all that out. Then they just had Rino come over and it looked like I just started with Joe. I can understand why it would look bad. That I had an issue with, and quite frankly, I called production and I yelled at them. I said, ‘You know, that’s not what transpired. It’s not appropriate.’”

    “All I kept thinking is, ‘Am I going to allow my four children to see me act like a complete animal on TV like the Joes did at a christening?’ No. I was never going to let that happen, so I got frustrated,” explained Jim. “I kept saying, ‘You don’t want to go there, Joe. It’s the United States Attorney office, the same guys in Newark who are prosecuting your brother in law…’ He kept saying, ‘What’s an ass? What’s a USA?” He was very difficult … And that’s when I yelled in his face. I actually thought it was kind of funny but people didn’t get my sense of humor. That I was done. That he couldn’t understand the concept that if same people who prosecute Joe and Teresa Giudice work with me on cases, it’s probably not a good idea for us to be hanging out, bowling.”

    How would Jim describe his Real Housewives of New Jersey experience? “The whole experience has been really bizarre for me. I never wanted to be an actor. I never wanted to be famous. I don’t really care much for the limelight. I enjoy private time with my family so it’s been kind of weird.”

    “It’s not been a windfall of money I can assure you. Like any business, you lose money the first year. So it’s not been something financially prudent. If anyone wants to be on reality TV, it’s not there to make you money I can tell you that,” continued Jim. “But for the kids, it’s been great. For Amber, it’s a dream of hers. And I think that is the most wonderful thing I can do. For me, it’s been pretty much a nightmare. I never wanted to be a part of it. I was only supposed to film with her and Bobby a couple scenes. I got sucked in. Once I got sucked in and they painted me the villain, so be it. I can be a villain. I’m okay with that.”

    Speaking of Bobby, Jim dissed his ex-friend left and right. “What most people don’t know is, Bobby‘s really not a fireman. He’s not a blue collar guy. Bobby’s worth half a billion dollars. Bobby’s family owns the largest auto group in the state of New Jersey. He’s a volunteer fireman. He joined the department a month or two before we started filming because he wanted to have an on-camera persona. He’s a good guy in a lot of respects but he wanted to be famous and he was willing to sacrifice myself and my wife to do it. There are hard feelings and I won’t forgive him for what he did.”

    “I don’t know if you know this and everyone jokes with my wife and says, ‘oh, it’s the cancer card,’ but my wife had seven surgeries – complete reconstruction of her back and her chest,” shared Jim. “Bobby knew full well that physical confrontation such as the one that occurred in his home… for you and I, we could get a bruise. For her, she could have ripped some of the reconstruction. That’s a serious situation. It’s taken a lot of time to rehab to get her back to where she’s strong and healthy. The fact that he would put her in that situation for five minutes of fame, it doesn’t make sense to me. I don’t understand priorities like that. He’s wealthy. He’s so wealthy it’s not funny. All he wanted to be was famous. I mean, he could have brought Bravo if he wanted to and filmed himself, he didn’t have to sacrifice my wife and I.”

    Jim went on to say that Bobby and Nicole Napolitano only met during the casting process! “Bobby met Nicole at our casting call. He didn’t know her beforehand – that’s a complete lie. They met literally at the casting call. He actually sought them out because we knew of them from around town and we needed additional people to bring on the show. Amber was contacted because of her relationship with Melissa. She was actually contacted by a casting company and then once they found out about her relationship with Melissa, they were pushing her forward.”

    According to Jim, producers still needed more women for the show at this point. “They wanted someone who was over the top. Friends of ours from town said, ‘Well there’s these twins. They’re really outspoken, they’re crazy.’ Bobby said, ‘I can find them. They’re always at the Dunkin’ Donuts where I hang out.’ He literally went to the Dunkin’ Donuts, picked them up, and brought them back to his house. They signed contracts with us and we ended up submitting them and he ended up dating Nicole because of it.”

    “So they all literally came through Amber and I,” added Jim. “Bobby wanted a very big role. We were going to bring him on just as our friend, and he was like, ‘I don’t want to be your friend. I want more of a role.’ Here’s a little exclusive for you: he had carnal relations with several of the young ladies who we submitted for the show. Nicole was, like, third in line at that point. It was an ongoing joke, because I was like, ‘Bobby, you can’t sleep with every girl we submit.’ It was kind of an ironic thing. He wanted to be on the show so bad, whoever looked like they were going to be next, that’s who he started dating. Nicole got picked up, so, love at first sight I guess.”

    Does Jim believe Rino slept with Santa? “First off, someone’s saying I told Victoria Gotti this. I don’t know Victoria Gotti – never met her, never talked to her. I was as shocked as everyone else was. I found out that night when my wife came home from Victoria’s house. At first we really thought that they were playing with us. Honestly. I was like, ‘This is just too over the top.’ After doing a little digging, I’m sad to say I feel it is true.”

    “Viewers will see later on in the season, there’s a little confrontation coming with myself and the twins and their reaction told me all I needed to know,” said Jim. “Also, there are a lot of people from Brooklyn in our area and apparently Rino tells everybody everything from the Russian stripper pushing his kids on the swing to the relationship with Santa. He was blunt about it. If you would ask me, I’d say 90% I believe it’s true based upon everything I’ve heard and based on what Rino’s told me and based on what Bobby’s told me.”

    Jim said he hasn’t talk to Rino or Bobby since the “bogus” first responder’s party. “It was a pure set up. It was an unadulterated set up to have my wife assaulted and to have me picked on. If you watch closely, Dina Manzo‘s laughing in the background as my wife is having her hair pulled out. If you watch closely, Joe Gorga gives Bobby the signal and says, ‘Let’s go upstairs and tour the house.’ But yet they’re in the kitchen, so they never really toured the house. When I come up the stairs, Bobby says, ‘It happened already.’ I played that back about five times. And the look on his face already suggested he knew what was happening. It was clearly a set up. We weren’t there five minutes. We didn’t even have one drink. It was so clear that’s what they were gunning for. It’s a shame. I think it actually hurt the show because they never actually got to see any of us be friends.”

    Is there anything else Jim would like to add? “I’d like everyone to know that I do not clean aquatic animal vaginas, so please keep those tweets to a minimum.”

    Speaking of Twitter, Jim is not a fan. “I don’t think someone should anonymously be able to insult you. If they want to say it and give their name, I’m okay with that. But, if they want to sit behind a fake name and address and say nasty things, I’m not a big fan of that. I joined only because my wife was catching so much heat. They were being so cruel and abusive. Amber had nothing to do with what I said, yet people were being disgusting to her. I purposely went on and went at people pretty hard. I have no problem explaining my position. If they insult me, I’m going to insult them back and block them. I honestly don’t care. If you’re not going to be adult enough to have a conversation, then I’m going to treat you as you treat me. Beware if you come.”

    “I really wish everyone would understand that for me this is a show,” concluded Jim. “It is reality TV, but it’s not my reality. My reality is my wife and my children and being a father is the thing that matters to me most. And being a husband. If you see me being flippant or see me being a little rough on it or even what people may consider to be a prick, it’s a role.”

    http://www.realitytea.com/2014/09/03/jim-marchese-slams-bobby-ciasulli-spills-real-housewives-of-new-jersey-secrets/

    ‘RHONJ’ Star Amber Marchese Cyberbullies Jim Marchese’s Ex-wife, Rebecca Grande
    By Star Staff, October 15, 2014

    Amber Marchese has fast established herself as Real Housewives of New Jersey’s newest — and nastiest — instigator. Whether she’s picking fights with ex-BFF Melissa Gorga or sitting back as her husband, Jim, spreads rumors about twins Nicole Napolitano and Teresa Aprea, Amber is always stirring up trouble, and, Star has learned, it’s no act!

    Long before she made her Bravo debut, Amber cyberbullied her husband’s ex to such an upsetting degree, the tormented mother of two was forced to contact the police. According to a police report filed by Jim’s ex-wife, Rebecca Grande, on Jan. 9, 2013 — and uncovered by Star — Rebecca’s business Twitter account was inundated by harassing, abusive tweets from @TruthBeTold66. Though the account was “anonymous” — and the tweets sounded more like the words of a spiteful adolescent than a 37-year-old wife and mother — it was later found to belong to Amber.

    “Amber hates Jim’s ex-wife and was actually getting pleasure out of attacking and bullying her on Twitter,” and insider reveals. “It’s extremely immature and disgusting.”

    The trouble began for Rebecca, a professional body-builder who’s been involved in a custody battle with Jim, in 2012, when the mysterious account left a hurtful comment on one of her pictures. She ignored it at first, figuring it was just a random troll, but more tweets followed, all derogatory and directed at her muscular physique. She temporarily blocked the account — only to later learn that more than 30 insulting tweets and messages had been sent to her from the same address.

    It was more than she could take. With the help of the website What’s Their IP, Rebecca learned that the tweets were being sent from Jim and Amber’s residence. She went to the police, who launched a full-scale investigation. During the first questioning, Jim denied any knowledge of the account — but later called the police office back with the news that his wife had admitted to creating it and posting the messages.

    Meanwhile, Amber tried to dodge the accusations, claiming that she didn’t realize the person she was harassing was Rebecca, and adding that her husband’s ex had harassed her, too, but none of it held water. “Amber can act all innocent,” the source adds, “but the truth is, she’s as spiteful as they come.”

    Sadly, it’s Jim and Rebecca’s two sons who have felt the fallout the most. At the center of the exes’ custody battle, which has been raging since their 2004 divorce, Sebastian and Michael have grown up being fought over — and Amber only made things worse. “Bringing the children in the middle of their drama is not the way to handle the situation,” an insider explains.

    Amber’s cyberbulling of their mother has no doubt deeply disturbed her stepsons. “She is certainly a far cry from the respectable wife and step-mother, or she wouldn’t have verbally attacked Rebecca — and Jim couldn’t have cared less about it!” the source adds. “How do you think that made those poor boys feel?”

    For an interview with Rebecca Grande, click here. http://monster-house.com/?p=349

    http://starmagazine.com/2014/10/15/amber-marchese-cyberbully-husbands-ex-wife-real-housewives-of-new-jersey/

    Jim Marchese: World’s Worst Boss?
    By Star Staff, November 20, 2014

    A former employee at Jim’s Mortage Now Inc. says The Real Housewives of New Jersey star regularly stiffed workers on wages. “Employees and contractors would often complain of late or missing checks while working for Jim,” claims the insider, saying that Jim would plead poverty to his loyal workers…but lived like a king.

    “He alienated his employees — and then he showed up to work in a brand-new Maserati,” fumes the source. “It didn’t sit well with anyone in the company.”

    http://starmagazine.com/2014/11/20/jim-marchese-cheap-bad-boss-not-paying-employees/

    Cell Therapeutics and Jim Marchese, the Whistleblower?
    10-31-2007

    Jim was the whistleblower on his former employer, Cell Therapeutics: allegedly, he helped set up the scam and then exposed it after he was fired and it no longer worked to his advantage.

    Whistle-blowers are typically celebrated for risking their careers, and even their safety, to bring corporate wrongdoing to light.

    But once in a great while, someone blows a whistle on the whistle-blower. Consider the case of James Marchese, now unfolding in a courthouse in Seattle.

    A few years ago, Mr. Marchese met with Justice Department officials and told them that his former employer, a pharmaceutical company, had fraudulently marketed a cancer drug and bilked Medicare out of millions.

    The government was so impressed by Mr. Marchese’s allegations that it joined him in suing that company, Cell Therapeutics.

    In April, the company agreed to pay $10.5 million to the government to settle the charges. That put Mr. Marchese in line to receive as much as a quarter of that sum, or $2.8 million, as his reward for blowing the whistle.

    But the Justice Department has had a change of heart about Mr. Marchese and is asking a federal judge to award him nothing. The government now contends that he was the mastermind of a much bigger scheme within the company than the ones on which he blew the whistle.

    “Giving Marchese a share of the settlement proceeds would merely serve to reward Marchese’s egregious wrongdoing,” federal prosecutors in Seattle stated in a court filing this month.

    Whistle-blower lawsuits like Mr. Marchese’s, or so-called qui tam actions, date to the Civil War. That is when Congress, reacting to fraud by companies selling defective supplies to the Union Army, passed the False Claims Act, giving citizens the right to sue on the government’s behalf and be rewarded for acting as an informant.

    The concept, as one lawmaker described it at the time, was to set “a rogue to catch a rogue.”

    But if the government believes that a whistle-blower was also a “planner or initiator” of the fraud, it can argue that the reward should be reduced, even down to zero. That is what the Justice Department is now saying about Mr. Marchese, 38, who was a sales representative at Cell Therapeutics, a company based in Seattle.

    Several legal experts said they recalled just one or two times in recent decades when the government has publicly taken a similar stance. One case that occurred in the early 1990s involved a former Northrop Corporation engineer who may have been involved with test falsification by the company.

    “This happens once in a blue moon,” said John R. Phillips, a lawyer in Washington, who is considered a leading expert on whistle-blower lawsuits.

    Not surprisingly, Mr. Marchese said in an interview that he was shocked by the cold hand he was now getting from the Justice Department. He said that he did nothing wrong and that, if not for him, the government would never have had a case.

    “I was blown away when they said they were going to zero percent,” said Mr. Marchese, who now works for a mortgage lender in New Jersey.

    This tangled story began in 2000 when Cell Therapeutics won approval from the Food and Drug Administration to sell a cancer drug, Trisenox. But the agency approved the drug only for a relatively rare form of leukemia known as acute promyelocytic leukemia, or A.P.L., which affects about 1,500 new patients a year.

    Cell Therapeutics sought ways to expand the use of the drug, which is a form of arsenic. But it settled on ways that were illegal, according to filings by both prosecutors and Mr. Marchese.

    (In resolving the charges against it, Cell Therapeutics denied any wrongdoing and continues to dispute suggestions that it broke the law.)

    Mr. Marchese’s days at Cell Therapeutics ended in 2002 when the company fired him, saying he arranged kickbacks to drug wholesalers, an accusation he denies. That year, he also contacted F.D.A. officials and asserted that Cell Therapeutics was illegally promoting Trisenox to treat cancers for which it had not been approved. One method, according to Mr. Marchese, involved paying bogus consulting fees to doctors to attend meetings that promoted off-label use of the drug.

    However, the case against the company, court documents indicate, did not gain momentum until mid-2004 when Mr. Marchese first met with federal prosecutors in Seattle. He gradually provided them with hundreds of company documents, tape recordings and other materials, his filings state
    In early 2006, Mr. Marchese filed his whistle-blower suit, which the government later joined. In such cases, a whistle-blower is guaranteed 15 percent to 25 percent of a recovery based on his or her contribution to the case. In the Northrop case, the whistle-blower got 10.8 percent.

    Mr. Marchese said he had paid a high personal price for talking to the government, including being blackballed from the drug industry.

    “I’ve lost six years of my life, my job, my home,” he said. “It has destroyed my marriage and made my life hell.”

    Federal prosecutors do not dispute Mr. Marchese’s entire story. But they say he concealed the biggest part of the scheme inside Cell Therapeutics from them for a simple reason: he had created it.

    “Marchese personally planned and initiated the fraudulent scheme at the core of this case,” they have charged.

    It is difficult to tell from filings precisely when Mr. Marchese and prosecutors turned from allies to adversaries. The assistant United States attorney handling the case, Peter A. Winn, referred questions to the Justice Department. A spokesman there declined to comment.

    But filings show that prosecutors, apparently based on evidence uncovered during their inquiry, notified Mr. Marchese in the fall of 2005 that he was the subject of a criminal investigation related to his activities at Cell Therapeutics.

    Prosecutors contend Mr. Marchese engineered a complex scheme that misled oncologists and Medicare into believing that Trisenox had been approved for treating cancers other than A.P.L. Mr. Marchese said that if he did anything wrong, it was an innocent mistake.

    To make matter worse, prosecutors say, Mr. Marchese destroyed and hid evidence to conceal his role.

    A main witness against him is a former girlfriend. She told prosecutors that she accompanied Mr. Marchese in 2004 to a storage warehouse in New Jersey to retrieve company documents for his planned whistle-blower lawsuit against Cell Therapeutics. But she said he told her that he needed to cull the files and destroy materials that would implicate him, filings show.

    There is also the issue of an unpublished manuscript by Mr. Marchese, “The Heart of the Matter.” The salesman’s former girlfriend, who is not identified by name in filings, has told prosecutors that she read and helped edit the manuscript, which she says details Mr. Marchese’s days at Cell Therapeutics, including his “successful efforts to illegally market Trisenox.”

    Mr. Marchese disputes that, describing the manuscript as an eight-page document and a crude attempt at fiction rather than fact. Prosecutors say they would like to see the manuscript so they can judge for themselves.

    Next month, a federal judge in Seattle will hold a hearing to determine what Mr. Marchese deserves as a whistle-blower, if anything. Mr. Marchese’s lawyers, who are seeking the maximum 25 percent, said in a filing that prosecutors tentatively dangled a settlement offer but then did not make it formal.

    Mr. Marchese said that if the government believes that he is a criminal, it should have indicted him, a course prosecutors have chosen not to pursue. He also contends that the government, by denying him what he considers his just reward, is sending a message that will deter other whistle-blowers.

    “They are saying that it is better to commit fraud than to report it, and that is a shame,” he said.

    For his part, Mr. Phillips, the lawyer and whistle-blower expert, is not so sure. He said that while he was unaware of the facts of Mr. Marchese’s case, the law has boundaries for a reason.

    “If the message goes out that you better not start a fraud internally and think you can profit it from it, then that is a good message to send out,” he said.

    http://www.cafepharma.com/boards/showthread.php?t=236109

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