Friday, December 12, 2008


"This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq!”

Everyone is talking about Bush being hit with the size ten shoes. But what I want to know is WHERE WAS THE SECRET SERVICE??? Normally, if anyone merely twitches in the audience of a presidential speech, the secret service pounces. But this Iraqi journalist had time to throw not only one shoe, but he had time to throw a second shoe!! And here is what he said: "This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq!”

Dec. 14 (Bloomberg) -- President George W. Bush ducked two shoes thrown at him by a man during a press conference in the Iraqi prime minister’s office to mark the signing of a security agreement.

Bush wasn’t hit by the shoes, which both sailed over his head after they were thrown one after the other. The president shrugged and said “I’m OK” after the incident in Baghdad today. “All I can report is it is a size 10,” Bush said afterwards.

In Arab culture, throwing shoes is a grave show of disrespect. “This is the farewell kiss, you dog,” the man shouted in Arabic.

After U.S. troops pulled down a statue of former dictator Saddam Hussein in 2003, Iraqi bystanders tossed shoes at it, according to news reports at the time. Bush said today’s incident was an example of free speech in a democracy.

The man threw the shoes from about 25 feet away as Bush, standing with Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, made formal remarks before the signing of the Iraqi-U.S. agreement. Maliki tried to block the second thrown shoe as it flew toward Bush, according to video of the incident shown on television.

Wrestled to Ground

The shoe-thrower, who was in a group of journalists, was wrestled to the ground and taken away. “This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq,” shouted the man, later identified by the Associated Press as Muntadar al-Zeidi, a correspondent for Al-Baghdadia television, an Iraqi- owned station based in Cairo, Egypt.

I have seen a couple of great films recently. One of the BEST films I've ever seen is "Slumdog Millionaire" by the great Irish director Danny Boyle, who did "Trainspotting."

The other film I cannot get over is "The Boy in the Striped Pajamas" and the ending will absolutely shock you. No one who has seen it will reveal the ending — and I was totally unprepared for it. We took the kids on Thanksgiving evening, and I can't think of a better way to realize how grateful we all should be for our lives.

We also saw "The Day the Earth Stood Still" which we loved. The kids loved it almost as much as I did, but they are bit more mature than I am, so that makes sense.

Tonight we watched the Video Game Awards with Jack Black in his underwear. My 14-year-old raves about Unchartered and can't wait for Unchartered 2. The kids argued over which is better: the PS3 or XBOX 360.

Here are some review excerpts of my current favorite movie:

Slumdog Millionaire" is an emotional roller coaster, a "ticking clock" thriller, a tragic-comic blend of the modern and the ancient. Like opera and soap opera, it tugs at the heart and flings obstacles in the way of our star-crossed kids. Like many an ancient tale from the Far East, it embraces fate. And never has the phrase "It is written" taken us on a more thrilling ride. - Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel

For six months, Boyle and about a dozen colleagues traveled to Mumbai, India, to create "Slumdog Millionaire," a sometimes intense but ultimately buoyant account of an orphan's remarkable performance on the Indian version of "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire," where the top prize is actually closer to $4 million.

"They are the fourth largest nuclear power in the world and yet they don't have working toilets," Boyle says of the startling disparity between India's haves and have-nots. "It has all of this emerging technology and no clean drinking water."

Those dramatic juxtapositions form the backdrop of Boyle and screenwriter Simon Beaufoy's ("The Full Monty") adaptation of Vikas Swarup's novel "Q and A." Jamal Malik (Dev Patel) may be enjoying an incredible run on the quiz show but the question he most wants answered is: What has become of his one true love, Latika (Freida Pinto)?

Boyle says the movie's message is not unlike the spirit of the people he encountered making it. "They have this amazing belief in faith and the organic nature of life," Boyle says. "That things will happen." -- John Horn, L.A. Times

•SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE is a Fox Searchlight release directed by Danny Boyle with Loveleen Tandan from a script by Simon Beaufoy based on the novel Vikas Swarup. Running time: 118 minutes. Rated R for some violence, disturbing images and language.


Our guest Wednesday on the Basham and Cornell show will be Academy Award Winner Louis Gossett, Jr.