Screened Out – Fifty Shades of Grey

By : Stephen Miller
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Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan, Marcia Gay-Harden

Do you know what’s shocking about Fifty Shades of Grey? It’s dull. This film about a virgin who dips her pinky toe into a BDSM relationship is about as titillating as buying cat litter. There’s hardly enough plot to call this a story.

Not that the source material promised much. I barely got through the bad grammar and simple sentences of the first book, which started as pornographic fan fiction for the Twilight books. According to snarky legend, enough bored housewives loved it that E.L. James removed the copyrighted stuff and made it a bodice ripper replete with semi-kinky sex and glamorous living. Not being one for understatement, James gave her characters the grandiloquent names Anastasia Steel and Christian Grey.

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Orlando photographer Josh Garrick makes history at Greek museum

By : David Thomas Moran
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Orlandoan fine art-photographer Josh Garrick remembers meeting the current love of his life back in junior high. He fondly recalls one of their first encounters at a Pennsylvania county fair. Garrick still has a vivid memory of that day. He won a blue ribbon in one of the fair’s contests.

Today, the love affair continues but some might say it is anything but ordinary. Garrick’s relationship led him to leave behind his hometown, his family and friends, and everything he knew as a farm boy for the hustle and bustle of city life – city life 2,400 years ago in Athens, Greece.

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Super Joy Riders

By : Jake Stevens
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The Super Joy Riders met on July 28 for the first of many monthly bike rides. These “super heroes” travel around downtown Orlando battling litter, pessimism and spreading good cheer.

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Are you the perfect plaintiff?

By : Anonymous
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Dreamgirls to close after successful run
All good things, as the saying goes, must come to an end. So must the incredibly successful run of Mad Cow Theatre’s Dreamgirls, which opened last month and closes July 7. The local production, featuring local actors, has won critical acclaim and the audience seems to agree. Representatives of the theater say that sell-out shows have become common-place and that some fans even come back for a second showing. Watermark is the sponsor of the show and we introduced our readers to the cast and director in issue 20.13 last month. We feel like proud parents! Congratulations to the theater and its cast.

Plaintiff and simple
Equality Florida (EQFL) is looking for a few good plaintiffs. Looks like the organization is taking the first steps toward organizing a marriage equality lawsuit against the state of Florida. “When we launched Get Engaged, our campaign to change hearts and minds toward supporting the freedom to marry, we asked you to tell your story,” the request reads. “As we explore the very real potential of going to court to protect our families, we want to know if you are willing to tell your story not only to the public but also to the court.” The form for potential plaintiffs is pretty simple ““ name, partner’s name, contact info, location, whether you’re willing to talk about your story in court and a description of your family situation. Interested? You can find it at

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Monday Ripples: Darwin’s Unanswered Question

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â┚¬Å”What this world needs is a new kind of army â┚¬â€œ the army of the kind.â┚¬Â â┚¬â€œ Cleveland Amory

I've been thinking about garbage a lot lately. More specifically litter strewn here and there around my neighborhood. We recently moved to the Colonialtown and the area we live in is an odd mix of industrial and residential. Because of this hybrid factor, more than any other place I've lived, people seem to be comfortable tossing their trash on the ground.

I found a commercial from my youth online and posted it on my Facebook wall. Whenever I see litter junking up my community, the PSA's strong image of a Native American shedding a tear after someone throws their fast food waste at his feet. In the comments under my post, one of my friends stated that the situation was that different cultures viewed garbage in different ways, he had observed this in his travels, and we are after all a melting pot in this country.

I think there could be some truth his hypothesis, which in a strange way gives me hope. Maybe the situation is creating awareness, so that we can change perception. This is a much more positive way to look at the situation than my initial reaction: some people are selfish jerks.

Evolution of Kind
Where does good come from?
Who knew that the origin of altruism is an ongoing debate when it comes to the theory of evolution? Certainly not the author of this here blog! It makes sense that it would be a debate now that I've read this intriguing piece by Leon Neyfakh for The Boston Globe; being nice to another works against the whole idea of natural selection. Thanks to reader Zac Alfson for sharing this on the SSTW Facebook page.

Cycle Wars
This past weekend, Brendan and I pedaled over to one of our local restaurants to partake of some Greek food. On our ride back, we got in the left lane to turn toward home and a BMW sped past us, honking its horn, then cut in front of us to turn up the same street we were heading on. We shook our heads at the driver, who seemed to be ignorant of the law which requires you to use the lane as normal, if a bike lane isn't available. Automobile driver ignorance is disheartening â┚¬â€œ not to mention dangerous â┚¬â€œ when it comes to cycling. We need to do more pedaling as the price of gas climbs and our environment becomes polluted from our ridiculous dependence on fossil fuels.

Lest you think the cycling crisis is limited to my still young city, take a look at this blog which chronicles the current conflict between bike riders and the police in New York City.

Cup o' Good
Aspire CoffeeWorks
Some unbelievable things are happening in my home state due to a man who seems hellbent on finding his place in history as our worst governor. Recently he was planning to cut funding to programs that help disabled people, until organizers in that field came to him with solutions. I hate to be cynical, but our governor really isn't interested in anything unless it can make him or his friends money. It's disgusting, but I digress. My point being that we can't rely on politicians to change our world; in fact, when we come together, we are often more affective.

Take Aspire CoffeeWorks as an excellent example. In a partnership with Metropolis Coffee Company in Illinois, Aspire is broadening the horizons of people with disabilities by providing them with work. You can support their work by purchasing their fair trade, organic coffee. It'll be delivered right to your mailbox!

A Million Little Pieces?
â┚¬ËœThree Cups of Tea' Author Defends Book
I'm not sure what to think after reading this piece from the New York Times. You may remember that I read Three Cups of Tea and loved it. Its author Greg Mortenson is dealing accusation that parts of the book may not be true. On the heels of that, CBS did a report trying to expose the schools as ineffective. The need for fact checking when it comes to autobiographical material is a valid point, we all have faulty memories and honest mistakes can be made, but I think Greg is a stand-up guy and I firmly believe in him, his story, and his amazing work. Regardless, I'm putting this out there for you to draw your own conclusions, and as a cautionary lesson on finding out the facts behind organizations we choose to support. It’s worth using one of your 20 free clicks to read this article.

Be sure to enter to win the SSTW contest to win a copy of the coffee table book African Cats: The Story Behind the Film. All you have to do is tell us your favorite Disney flick. A winner will be drawn this Friday, Earth Day.