I love hats!

I am obsessed with hats. Not just any old hat, but big, flashy church lady hats. I am talking about the kind of hat that no one wants to be stuck behind on any Sunday morning because you will see nothing else. The lamp shade hat, the flying saucer hat, the stovepipe hat — the bigger the better. A hat like this will give you an attitude and make you stand up straight and walk proud. There is a reason that some women refer to these hats as crowns

Harriet Rosebud NYC

Harriet Rosebud NYC

This started a couple of years ago when I signed up for Pinterest and was browsing for things that interested me. I started off with shoes. That was natural for me because I have always loved a good pair of heels. From there, I moved on to looking at fashion – runway and ready to wear. Next thing you know, I saw photos of some Kentucky Derby hats and it was a wrap. I was drawn to those outrageous hats that served absolutely no practical purpose. Do not even get me started on the lids that were sported during the Royal wedding because no one rocks a hat– or a fascinator — like the Brits.

The Duchess of Cornwall

The Duchess of Cornwall

I see you Camilla Parker Bowles looking like you are headed to some kind of society function with tea and crumpets on the menu.

My family is from the south and my grandmother wore hats to church regularly, so my fondness of big hats is genetic. Back in the day, a woman wouldn’t dare go to church bare-headed. And for many women who toiled in menial jobs during the week, wearing a nice hat to church once per week gave them a real boost of self esteem. My grandmother had a serious hat collection, but I have no idea what happened to those magnificent brims once she passed away. I sure wish that I had one or two of those hats for sentimental purposes. Unlike back in the day, wearing hats to church regularly is no longer as prevalent now outside of certain denominations like the COGIC whose members are known for wearing gorgeous hats and matching outfits. These stylish ladies could give the royals a run for their money.

Mr. Sax Unlimited

Mr. Sax Unlimited

Donna Vinci ensemble

Donna Vinci ensemble

Otherwise, you will not normally see many hats during a church service unless it’s Easter Sunday or a special occasion like church anniversary. That is why I have to search for pictures online since it is rare for me to see a fabulous hat in real life.

Another significant hat event happened during during President Obama’s first inauguration in 2009 when people were carrying on over Aretha Franklin’s hat like it was the most unusual thing that they had ever seen. That hat had its own Facebook page. People photo-shopped that hat onto themselves, family pets and historical figures from Abraham Lincoln to Gandhi.

The (in)famous Inauguration hat

The (in)famous Inauguration hat

It was a great moment for the art of millinery. Now that Mr. Song creation was definitely impressive, but I was watching at home thinking that you would easily see something way more elaborate during a Pastor’s anniversary service because the average First Lady will go all out for her hat for that day even if she won’t for any other time.

You can buy a beautiful hat that is already made, or you can go to the next level with a couture hat made just for you. For those of us with larger heads, this is probably your best bet to insure a good fit. You can customize the fabric, decoration and height however you like. These custom hats are beautiful, but they can be pricey – I have seen some go for more than $500.

For all my fascination with hats, I do not own even one. I rarely get dressed up enough to justify buying one, so I have to live vicariously through others, but if I ever had an occasion to finally buy myself a hat, it is going to be something spectacular. Until then, I will stick with collecting photos on my Pinterest board.

Scandal Episode 414: The Lawn Chair

Scandal Episode 414: The Lawn Chair

Scandal Episode 414: The Lawn Chair shows Olivia attempting to get back to her regular job in the aftermath of her kidnapping while being challenged by an activist who calls her out for being on the wrong side of an injustice. She is still feeling vulnerable but rather than taking time to heal, she dives headlong into this latest traumatic scene that stems from a police shooting of unarmed Black teenager.

Courtney B. Vance delivers a masterful performance as Clarence Parker, the bereaved father who is determined to get justice for his son who was left laying in the street for the entire episode reminiscent of the incident in Ferguson last year.

Fitz needs to come up with a new VP now that Andrew is incapacitated without picking someone who will pose a threat to Mellie’s future political plans. Cyrus encourages him to make a bold choice, but he wants to pick someone who is going to be a team player and won’t compete with Mellie’s plan to run for office. Fitz says that it’s her turn and Cyrus asks him if he has any idea how difficult it will be for Mellie to make the leap to the oval office. Why let a little thing like experience stand in the way of a bored First Lady’s dreams?

The DC Police  department hired Olivia in the wake of the fatal shooting of unarmed teenager Brandon Parker by a White officer. Crowds of angry residents have formed, and the police chief does not want a riot on his hands.

The victim’s body is still lying in the street when his father shows up with a gun demanding to see the officer who killed his son.

Olivia tries to negotiate with Mr. Parker to keep the police from shooting him, but he will not leave his son’s side. A local activist brings the man a lawn chair to sit on and encourages him to remain there since that is the only power he has in the situation.

Olivia accuses the activist, Marcus, of inflaming the situation to try to make a name for himself. She told him that it would be his fault if the boy’s father is killed. “You don’t want justice. You want anger. You want outrage. You want retribution,” Olivia admonishes.

Marcus is not impressed by Olivia’s arguments and calls her out for living in DC but having never visited that neighborhood unless it was to pick up soul food. He lets her know that he knows exactly who she is and brings up the fact that she worked to get the President elected twice.

Scandal Episode 414: The Lawn Chair Black CardScandal Episdoe 414: The Lawn Chair

She tells him he doesn’t know her and that they both want the same thing, but he is not convinced. “You want to put it to bed quietly and go to the Hill and say that you came down to the hood and you saved us. No thanks Olivia. Your black card is not being validated today.” Sir, I am sure that Olivia does have an actual Black card – the kind that gets issued to high net worth individuals.

This Marcus character totally reminds me of Rev. Bullock from Preachers of Detroit (don’t judge me). But I digress….

The officer claimed that Brandon matched the profile of a shoplifter. He said that he stopped the young man who became belligerent and pulled a knife before charging him which is why he shot him. Yeah, because Black boys pull knives on police officers all the time.

Once Olivia realizes that the Police chief is trying to keep the protests out of the news so that he can unleash brutal tactics on the crowd, she joins the protesters behind the barricades.

Huck comes down to the crime scene and tells Olivia that the police have the surveillance footage from the night of the shooting but they have not released it.

Olivia goes to David and tells him that she needs his help. She explains to him that justice is not available to everyone and he tries to squash her comments, but she says that she felt helpless and afraid each day that she was in captivity and asks him to imagine feeling like that every day.

She also told him that Brandon’s father believes that his only way out of the situation is in going to lead to prison or the morgue. And he cannot argue with that.

Scandalepisode414fairnessScandal Episode 414: The Lawn Chair

David issues a subpoena for the surveillance tape which shows the victim reaching into his pocket for something, but it does not show the item. The father allows them to check the body for a weapon and they find a knife. Mr Parker kept repeating that his son does not carry a knife and raises his gun as if he is about to shoot.

Olivia and Marcus manage to walk away from him without being shot, but her hands are shaking, and she is clearly not okay. Ms. Pope is going to have to be checked into the psych ward before it’s all over.

Huck and Quinn discover that the officer planted the knife on the body because he arrested a suspect the previous night but the arrest was never formalized and the man’s knife was never booked into evidence. Brandon was reaching for his receipt when he was shot.

Scandal Episode 414: The Lawn Chair

Olivia goes to the confront the officer who launches into this psychotic rant about “these” people and how they disrespect him. “Brandon Parker is dead because he didn’t have respect. Because those people out there who are chanting and crying over his body didn’t teach him the right values.”

Whenever someone starts throwing around “you people” it is always nasty business, and I would bet that he was speaking for many of his real life counterparts. Not all, but enough to create this constant mistrust and hostility.

The officer is arrested and the police department is placed under a federal probe,

Olivia takes Mr. Parker to the White House to meet the President, and he breaks down in tears talking about his son.

Scandal Episode 414: The Lawn Chair

This episode was so powerful and emotional because it is loosely based on real events.

Michael Brown was gunned down in Ferguson and left lying in the streets for hours last August. Massive crowds showed up to protest for weeks after the shooting, and the police treated them like enemy combatants.

The similarities end there because there has been no arrest to date.

Although the Justice Department recently released a report on the Ferguson police department that found a pattern of systemic racism, discrimination and hostility toward Black residents, federal charges will not be filed.

This was an important episode because Ferguson is a deeply divisive issue and unfortunately, it is but one of many stories about Black men being killed at the hands of law enforcement.

As much as I disliked the recent episodes about Olivia being kidnapped and trafficked, I have to give kudos to the writers for getting it right this time.

Olivia is very much a person of privilege living in her own little bubble even as her own father tried to warn her that she would never be one of “them.” So she needed that reality check that Marcus gave her.

Well done Shonda and crew.

Now can we please get our girl some counseling before she completely loses her mind?

Scandal Episode 413: No More Blood

Scandal Episode 413: No More Blood

Scandal Episode 413: No More Blood delivers Olivia from her nightmarish plight, Ole Randy Andy gets what was coming to him and like Lattimore, Daddy Pope announces that his give a dayumn gave out a long time ago. The title comes from a promise Huck makes to Quinn in an attempt to dial back the crazy that was unleashed in the last episode when he butchered a whole room of folks.

Although she is physically unscathed, Olivia is traumatized by this experience and several of her major relationships may never recover. She needs to know that Cyrus Beene is not her friend with his low down treacherous self. That awful wig is the physical manifestation of his ugly soul. He needs to be dealt with — soon.

The episode opens with Olivia and her captors in the desert meeting with the Iranians who purchased her. The lead person for the other side is an Iranian female who Olivia speaks to in Farsi convincing her that Gus and the boys are planning a doublecross. The Iranian lady believes Olivia and calls off the deal and both parties retreat. Go on then Ms. Pope with those advanced language skills. I guess Rowan really did send her to the finest schools.Scandal Episode 413: No More Blood

Quinn is at the OPA offices drinking brown liquor when Jake walks in and tells her that Olivia is okay because the deal fell through. She had me worried because that firewater makes folks do strange things and we already know that she has tendencies.

Mellie meets with Andrew and spells out the terms of an agreement that he is to sign to make sure that Olivia is returned safely and he keeps his mouth shut. She tries to snatch his wig by telling him that he is just the runner-up but will never be the winner when he tells her that she wasn’t saying all that when he had her on her knees in the White House. Poor Mellie has no luck at all when it comes to choosing men. She might need to try E-Harmony.

Mellie realizes that ole Randy Andy is not going to play nicely so she goes to Mrs. Ellen and tells her that she better reel him in since she took one for the team in sleeping with that pig to get Huck to back off her family.Scandal Episode 413: No More Blood

Jake straightens Huck out explaining that he received the same horrendous treatment from B613 only he did not allow his dark side to take over. “It feels good, that’s the problem. Warm blood on your hands feels good… They warped me too. They added a beast inside me too, and he’s a really good guy. He’s so much fun – you’d like him. But I do not let him out ever. Not when I fight. Not when I kill. Not when I hurt. Because he is not allowed out to play.”

And here we thought Huck was the only bloodthirsty loon in the bunch.

Mrs. Ellen approaches Huck offering to pay him to get rid of Andrew only Huck promised Quinn that he was done killing people because she was freaked out by him going off the deep end in trying to get Olivia back.

The CIA and other high level honchos met Fitz in the situation room to explain how disastrous it would be if Olivia falls into the wrong hands and suggested that they might need to “neutralize the asset.” Although the CIA head says that the Navy Seals only has a 30% chance of successfully extracting her, Fitz tells them to proceed.

Cyrus is angry about Fitz risking so much to save Olivia and hatches a secret plan with the CIA to kill her knowing that so long as she is out there floating around, whoever has her will be able to control the President.

The auction is back on and Huck bids as Marie Wallace.  It looks like they are going to win right up until the last minute when a group of Russians tie the bid at the last minute with a $2-billion offer.

Abby leaks Cyrus’ plans to Huck and the others which propels him to snatch Andrew up because we all know that Olivia is his Ms. Jenkins – he will kill you over her. Huck keeps his promise to Quinn and does not kill Andrew, but he injects him with something that induces a stroke and lands him in the hospital. Mellie later visits him and tells him that he brought it on himself. Ouch. She was like Mr. Big in that R. Kelly Keep it on the Downlow video where he yells “Look at me,  look at me!  I did this to you.”Scandal Episode 413: No More Blood

Jake goes to Mamma Pope and tells her that Olivia will either be sold to rapists or murked by the government. She tells him where to find Eli who is chilling at his fishing hole with several episodes of righteous indignation stored up.

Daddy Pope tells Jake that he has no daughter. “People are endlessly disappointing because you hope they won’t be. I knew that she would need me. I knew that you’d come here begging for help. This was all predictable, all disappointing this is why I am fishing. Because I am never disappointed out here because I don’t expect anything because anything is possible. I can be hopeful out here even in failure. because I know If I just go out there around that tree it might be different. Something might be different. Something I do might make a difference.”

I know he is still salty about Olivia trying to kill him, but I never expected him to be this cold about it.Scandal Episode 413: No More Blood

 

Gus decides to hand Olivia over to the Russians and they are off to the desert again to meet the purchasers. Olivia is walked out with a black hood over her head. When the hood is removed, she sees that the guy who purchased her is none other than Stephen, one of the original gladiators who left in the first season because he wanted to get married and have a normal life. Scandal episode 413: No More Blood

Scandal Episode 413: No more Blood Stephen Finch

Stephen Returns to save Olivia

Olivia realizes she is safe, grabs a gun, shoots Gus and then proceeds to kick the crap out of him in some bad Burberry boots. I was like girl, don’t break a heel on that lowlife when you have more bullets. Stephen had to pull her off that fool because she was about to kick a hole in him.

Olivia returns home and finally get some decent locks courtesy of Huck who hugs her really tight and tells her that he was afraid that someone had hacked her into pieces and burned her body. Um, why did she not have him stay for a while just to be safe?GUILLERMO DIAZ, KERRY WASHINGTON

Fitz showed up looking all pitiful as soon as her crew left asking if she was hurt. She assures him that she was not raped but says that there are some things that are worse. She was mad at him for going to war and told him that he was throwing away everything that she sacrificed to get him where he is. She is livid and kicks him out. Here we go again.

  • I don’t much care for Fitz, but he did not deserve to be treated like that. I get that she is disappointed in his behavior, but he has proven over and over that he loves her and will do just about anything to be with her. How are you going to be mad at the man for trying to save you?
  • How many times is that low down dirty Cyrus going to try to kill folks before calling it off at the last minute? He did the same thing with James and has no loyalty to anyone or anything. I pray that Fitz, Daddy Pope and the Notorious MOM find out about this betrayal because he needs to pay.
  • Daddy Pope is understandably angry, but he has to reconcile with his only child. If for no other reason than fear of her crazy mother who is not going to be happy when she hears about him refusing to help.
  • Can Stephen please come back for good? Harrison is gone, so there is an opening. Plus, he’s handsome and has a hot accent. And Liv really needs a new love interest.

 

About this Scandal auction

Olivia Pope Kidnapped

Scandal’s writers had the kidnapped Olivia Pope auctioned off to the highest bidder, and the most recent episode ended with her being sold to Iran and trotted out in the desert to meet her new owner. Let’s just think about this for a minute.

Now I am a fan of this show and have been from the beginning, but the imagery of a Black woman being sold –during Black History month no less– does not sit well with me.

Olivia started off as a powerful, well-connected fixer who was highly sought out for her political prowess. She was beautiful, brave and smart. Oh, and the clothes. They had me from the first episode.

We could relate to Olivia because brilliant and accomplished though she was, she had one weakness – a man. Don’t we all? So many of us have just about every other aspect of our lives together except for the personal portion. Hers is an extreme situation, but it resonated with a lot of us.Olivia Pope Scandal

Season three is when things started changing. There was less fixing and more personal drama between her and her married boyfriend and the other guy she is sleeping with regularly.

The winter finale ended with her being kidnapped and when the new season started Olivia advised her captor to sell her to the highest bidder instead of waiting to be rescued. The idea is as absurd as it is offensive.

Human trafficking is a real problem, and I do not see why the writers would use this as a plot device. Out all of the ways to bring Olivia out of this predicament they opted for this one?

I have overlooked a lot for the sake of dramatic license, and it’s been well documented in my recaps, but this commodification of Black women is going too far.

And for those who would argue “It’s just a tv show!” I challenge you to dig a little deeper because entertainment shapes our culture in many ways. No, I do not think that Black women are at risk of being herded back to the auction block wholesale, but this is terrible imagery, and I do not like it.Scandal Auctioning off Black Folks in 2015? No Mam

Are we so hungry for images of ourselves on tv that we are willing to blindly accept anything that is dished out? And the fact that a Black woman helms the show makes no difference to me in this case.

It’s okay to not to care about the implications of this plot twist, but please do not characterize those of us who do care about it as angry militants because that is not true.

My deep appreciation of this show has not dimmed my critical thinking skills, and as mother Iyanla would advise us “Let’s call a thing a thing.”

I’ll keep watching for now, but I need this show to get back to what it was and tone down the craziness.

 

 

 

Scandal Episode 411: “Where’s the Black Lady?”

Scandal Episode 411: “Where’s the Black Lady” shows Olivia saving herself from a hellish fate as Fitz, Jake and Huck work to find where she was taken. This episode is much better than the previous week’s offering which was so tedious that I did not even bother to recap it. This title comes from scenes with veteran actress Marla Gibbs who is a friend of the elderly lady who was killed in the last episode. I am still salty with them for killing Big Mamma in cold blood last week because that wasn’t even necessary.

The murdered lady’s name is Lois, and her friend is concerned that she has not been able to contact her, and she knows that Lois gave a spare house key to the nice Black lady who lives across the hall because she helps people for a living — Olivia. This is a pivotal moment because up until Scandal Episode 411 Where's the Black Lady?then Huck and Quinn were not able to figure out where Olivia might have been taken.

The episode opens with Fitz in the Oval office getting an unwelcome visit from the Secret Service. Apparently ole Randy Andy has co-opted multiple levels of government to get them to watch the President to make sure that he does not search for Olivia. Andrew’s henchman warns Fitz that Olivia will be beheaded if he fails to cooperate by declaring war on West Angola.

Ole Randy Andy is awfully bold in this episode, and I really wanted him to be dropped in the hole with Mamma Pope.

A visibly shaken Fitz is in the bedroom with Mellie who has suddenly decided to come clean about swerving with Andrew again. She starts running her mouth about all their dirty secrets including the stolen election, and Fitz tells her to stop talking since he is being followed and recorded. Mellie always has bad timing.

Fitz demands proof that Olivia is still alive before taking any action, so her captor films her holding up a newspaper and reading a statement. Ole girl requests a glass of water and uses that glass to show her captor’s reflection on camera. I knew she wasn’t just thirsty!

Scandal Episode 411 Where's the Black Lady

Huck pays Mrs. Ellen a visit at her house after she tucks her daughter in and warns her that he will cut the girl up and make her watch him do it if she does not tell him where to find Olivia.

She seems legitimately shook, but hell, who did she think they were dealing with here? This chick is the child of assassins and rolls with psychopaths. Huck could kill Lizzie and her daughter and have that house so clean that no one would know that she ever lived there.

Lizzie Bear pays Andrew a visit and asks him what he has done and tells him about her late night visitor. Ole Randy Andy basically tells her to man up and get her mind right because he is trying to get into the Oval Office.

Huck pays Lizzie another visit because she did not deliver the info about Olivia. He is sitting next to her daughter’s bed in the dark and muses about snapping the kid’s neck which turns out to be a bluff because he exacts his vengeance solely on Lizzie and left her back looking like she’d received 2,000 lashes. She may as well have stood up and yelled “Give us free!” after he got done with her.

After telling Mellie about the kidnapping, Fitz decides to declare war on Angola but Olivia is not freed because Andrew plans to use her to manipulate the President for the remaining three years of his term. Ian, her captor, says that they will keep her alive until the three years are up and then they will kill her.

Three years? Do they not know whose child she is? Mama Pope will burrow her way from that hole and chew iron bars to get to Olivia. And although he is angry with her, there is no way Eli is going to allow these people to just snatch his daughter up and treat her like some scullery wench without making them pay for it. Liam Neeson has nothing on the deadly Popes when it comes to bringing back kidnapped offspring.

Scandal Episode 411 Where is the Black Lady Taken 4

After Lois’ friend tells Quinn about Olivia having a key to the neighbor’s apartment, they go over there to investigate and find the ring that she left behind as a clue. Huck tells them that Olivia wears that ring for Fitz and never takes it off, so he is sure that she had been in that apartment. They also check the WiFi and are able to figure out the last person to have accessed it,  but they are not able to narrow down the location.

Mellie visits Andrew and tells him to give Olivia back to Fitz, but he goes off on some rant talking about how he’s doing all this devilment for them. Mellie takes one for the team and sleeps with him to steal his phones which she turns over to Lizzie who gives them to OPA so that Huck will leave her alone.

Andrew used one of the phones to contact Ian repeatedly, so the crew was able to locate where Olivia is being held and David Rosen uses the DEA to call in a drug raid on the location, but Olivia is already gone by the time they get there.

Realizing that she needs to save herself, Olivia brokers a deal with Ian to have him sell her to the highest bidder. She figures that it will be easier to take her chances on the open market rather than wait around to be killed.

Olivia reprises the hype man role that she played for Cyrus when he was about to quit in disgrace and asks Ian if he wants to remain a highly paid babysitter or try to gain some real power for himself. “Do you want to be a babysitter or do you want to be a boss?” she asks.

Scandal Epsisode 411 Where's the Black Lady - Stop right there

I can appreciate them trying to show Olivia saving herself, but I am not here for Black folks being auctioned off in 2015 – and during Black History month at that. Seriously? Is that the best that they could come up with for this storyline? I am side-eying this whole situation right now. Picture me glaring with my arms folded like that lady in the background of that infamous photo of Angelina Jolie and Amy Pascal.Scandal Episode 411: Where's the Black Lady?

What woman would come up with that plan? She had to know that her crew was coming for her, and even if they never found her dying in a cell has to be a better fate than being trafficked. I do not like this at all. I have given these writers a lot of leeway, but this is pushing it.

Olivia convinces Ian to get her cleaned up to fetch a better price, and she calls Fitz from a private jet to tell him about the plan. His excitement at hearing her voice on the phone is short-lived when Ian takes the phone and says that he is going to sell her to the highest bidder.

  • While this episode was more interesting than last week’s, the ending really ruined it for me. I find nothing clever or cute about this situation and there really was no need to go that route.
  • Are they going to have her sold off to some wealthy sheikh and added to a harem?
  • What is Mellie getting out of all this? Fitz does not love her, and neither does Andrew.
  • On the plus side, Mamma Pope is in the previews for the next episode, and you know that she is not going to allow any modern-day slavery to happen on her watch.

Scandal Episode 411 Where is the Black Lady?Scandal Episode 411 Where is the Black Lady?

About this weather….

It's too damn cold
I understand that it’s winter, but I am over all this cold weather. It’s not just cold, it’s bitter cold – the kind of cold that gets down in your bones and creates popsicles out of water bottles left in cars. This is the kind of cold that wreaks havoc on your social life because who wants to be traipsing about when the temperature is in the teens?

I have to think long and hard before venturing out in this frigid weather, and if there are not some really good reasons for me to be out, then I am staying on the couch in a Snuggie. Matter of fact, I have plans for tonight that I am probably going to ditch because it’s been pouring all day and the temperature is supposed to drop below freezing which means that the roads will be an icy mess. I am not trying to risk life and limb out here just to be chilling with wine and cheese. Not today satan

I did not move to the south to deal with this kind of persistent cold. I had visions of sitting on a porch sipping mint juleps and listening to tall tales told by courtly gentlemen. Instead I have mainly been making a mad dash to the door from my car so that the tears in my eyes (from the cold) don’t freeze!

My only consolation is that it is finally cold enough for me to wear my fabulous new coat that I bought in November, but for real, I am just about over that too. This is fur weather- Yeah I said it! I know it’s not politically correct, but please believe that if I had a fur I would be wearing it although I’d have no chance of looking as fierce as a vintage Teddy P. Tedd P in Fur

I actually tried on a fur just for kicks last month. I had no intention of buying it, but this other customer kept giving me dirty looks and demanding to know what kind of fur I was wearing. I was like listen homechick, this thing was dead when I got here, so you can stop looking at me sideways – that won’t bring it back to life. Those folks in that store might want to get some security just in case more of these militant folks start acting up on the premises.

We are under a winter weather advisory until tomorrow morning so I am in for the day. Bring on the Netflx and hot toddies!

Triangle Tree Challenge

Triangle Tree Challenge

North Raleigh Ministries is participating in the 5th Annual Triangle Tree Challenge, and we need your vote!

Trees on Display at Diamond View Park

We decorated our tree on the American Tobacco Campus on 12/3 and had a great time watching the other nonprofits bring their themes to life. There are more than 50 beautifully decorated trees on display this year, but only one of us can be crowned the winner.

Baskets of Hope

Our theme is Baskets of Hope to represent our mission of providing support for neighbors in crisis. The baskets on our tree are filled with food, clothing and toys.

Cash Prizes & Bragging Rights

Show your support for a nonprofit that has been helping neighbors in need for the last 10 years and we could win one of 6 cash prizes ranging from $1,000-$5,000 – and bragging rights.

Text “Tree26” to 33733

You can also vote online by visiting TriangleTreeChallenge.com and entering #26.

Daily voting is encouraged

The tree that gets the highest number of votes will be declared the winner, and you can vote once daily through 12/19.

Thanks very much, and Merry Christmas!!

Scandal Episode 409: Where the Sun Don’t Shine

Scandal Episode 409 Where the Sun Don't shine

 

Olivia’s Face-Off & Cyrus’ Epic Downfall

The Scandal Winter finale played out like a Shakespearean tragedy with Olivia’s face-off with her dad and Cyrus’ public humiliation once the press learns about his affair with a male prostitute. My patience with Ms. Pope is at the breaking point because she is being too hard on the only man who has always had her back. I’m about sick of her and this White hat nonsense that has allowed her to put herself and her crew on a pedestal pretending that their motives are pure while everyone else is supposedly wrong. Olivia tries to kill her dad and convinces Cyrus to marry his gigolo and ole Randy Andy kidnaps Olivia to get back at Fitz and force him into attacking Angola.

The episode opens with Olivia pouting over Daddy Pope getting away while Fitz and Jake hash out what went wrong. They have snipers searching for him when they discover the Notorious MOM in the hole. She thanks Olivia for saving her and seems to think that her own daughter will be on her side but she is sadly mistaken and Olivia tells Fitz and them to charge her mother with murder and a host of other serious crimes. So much for the mother daughter reunion.

A Lobbyist Called Slickback

Mrs. Ellen comes to OPA and gets on Olivia for not telling her that Cyrus bugged her phone. She observes that Olivia is either bad at her job or just not willing to help and even has nerve to use that tired old quote about there being a special place in hell for women who do not support other women. Um Mrs. Ellen, you need not quote Madeline Albright while you are out here being a Lobbyist called Slickback and playing a wife against her husband. Call me petty, but I really want Cyrus and Mellie to jump her. Mother Albright was not blazing trails in fanciful brooches and sensible shoes for other women to be out here using her words to cover their dirt.

Lizzie leaks Cyrus’ photos with the gigolo to the press making him a laughingstock while the Grant Administration is struggling with its response to the crisis in Angola. The President does not want to be drug unnecessarily into a war, but the failure to retaliate is making them look weak.  Olivia suggests that Cyrus marry Michael to try to smooth things over but he refuses saying that it wold be cruel and unfair to James for him to marry “this person.” Oh so it was okay to put a hit on the man twice and pimp him out to Daniel Douglas, but marrying a professional mic-checker  is a bridge too far for Mr. Beene. It’s good to have standards.

Tying Up Loose Ends

Jake narrowly avoids being killed and learns that Rowan is planning to kill all former B613 agents to tie up loose ends. He even goes so far as to create playing cards with the agents’ photos known as Kill cards. Jake finds his card on the gunman that he takes out and warns Huck and Quinn. Quinn goes to warn Charlie and winds up sleeping with him and later discovers that he’s been sent to kill her. They get into a Mortal Kombat style brawl that ends with them sitting on the floor bloodied and bruised in a kind of truce. He even agrees to help Huck make amends with his family.

Jake gives Olivia a gun and tells her that she needs to defend herself because Rowan is cleaning house but he of course tries one last time to get her to run off with him into the sun. “The sun went down a long time ago, and it’s not coming back, ” she tells him while holding the gun.Scandal Episode 409 Where the Sun Don't Shine

These Daughters Aint Loyal

Huck tracks Rowan’s car to a B613 safehouse in Roanoke but he is actually at Olivia’s apartment opening a bottle of wine and chilling like he pays the bills up in that joint trying to reminisce about Songs in the Key of Life. Olivia tells him to leave, but he pulls out a gun and tells her to sit. She does and then proceeds to get real disrespectful after he says that she is not going to be happy until he’s dead.

“You can never leave me alone because you have no place to go. The only life you have is the sad twisted one that you built here the one where you lurk in the shadows, pull puppet springs and pretend that the world could not exist without your protection. You’re a sick lonely man who only knows how to lie and  call it love.”

Um Ms. Pope, this is no way to talk to your dad, and I am sure that you know better. Daddy Pope interrupts her little speech asking  “Could you be more ungrateful?! There would be no Olivia Pope if not for me. So what your stomach turns every time you look at me? Well let me be the one to Let me break it to you Olivia, you are looking in the mirror.”

Olivia jumps up and grabs the gun in the middle of his rant, and he warns her to watch herself but this little heffa pulls the trigger! The gun was not loaded, but Daddy Pope screams and says “Are you kidding me? You just shot your own father? Never, never in a million years did I think that you would be willing to pull the trigger.” He took the gun from her and then leaves after telling her that she will miss him when he’s gone.

I have tolerated a lot of bad behavior from Ms. Pope – the adultery, the borderline alcoholism and trading on sexual favors to get what she wants, but this betrayal of her own dad is about the last straw for me. He is not innocent, but he is family, and she has shown way more dedication to friends than she ever has to own father. That is not cool. Not by a longshot, and she is sure to reap what she sowed. If she can forgive Jake for choking her and Fitz for being a serial azzhole, then surely she can muster some small portion of compassion for her own dad.

Scandal Episode 409: Where the Sun Don't ShineScandal Episode: Where the Sun Don't Shine

Olivia goes back to visit her mother and demands answers about where he might have gone. Mamma Pope looks at her calmly and tells her to get over herself. “Girl, you need to let it go.” She tells Olivia that she is just like her father who kept her in the hole and visited her every day.

Are you a Bitch Baby?

Cyrus gives Fitz his letter of resignation and is packing up his house when Olivia shows up with a pep talk. “When did you decide to let them ruin you?” she demands before telling him to quit acting like a “Bitch Baby” and go be the Cyrus Beene that she has always known – the political monster who really runs the country.

Mrs. Ellen confronts Mellie about Fitz deciding not to go to war and makes the mistake of saying that she thought they were on the same page. Mellie informs her that she knows about her and Andrew and warns her that she will be out for revenge in the next election cycle.Scandal Episode 409 Where the Sun Don't Shine

After being set straight by her mother, Olivia goes home and attempts to be normal with Jake. I say attempts because she looked and sounded real crazy dancing around talking about how she is choosing herself and is happy to dance alone. Yeah, sure. So she and Jake are about to get busy when he leaves her alone in the living room while he goes to the bedroom for a blanket. By the time he returns to the living room, she’s gone leaving behind an overturned glass of wine on the couch. That is how you know she didn’t leave willingly because ole girl does not waste the grapes.

The Vice President, ole Randy Andy, met with Fitz griping about his failure to attack Angola after their government supposedly bombed his car. He told Fitz that while it was messed up that he would not act on his behalf, he had something that he would go anything to get back, and the implication is that the something is Olivia. And so it ended.

  • I am feeling some kind of way about Olivia attempting to shoot her dad. He read her disloyal azz the riot act, and now she is probably going to need his help to get out of this current bind.
  • Baby Ella deserves a better stepdad than the gigolo, and I am sure that James is turning over in his grave at the thought of this nonsense. What can Michael teach this child other than how to make it clap for dollars?
  • Are they going to bring back Trill OG Bitsy to mentor Mellie in the second half of the season? Mells is getting some of her spark back, but I think she needs a few more lessons from her shade mentor.
  • Will Daddy Pope come back to save his ungrateful  pitiful child? I’m pretty sure that he will, and I hope that she learns to appreciate him and his methods.

Scandal Episode: Where the Sun Don't Shine