“Now cracks a noble heart. Good-night, sweet prince; And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest. ”

~William Shakespeare, Hamlet

This quote immediately came to mind when I opened this page to write this post. Today it has been confirmed that music legend Prince has died at the age 0f 57. Children of the 80s all over the world are in shock and reliving their fondest memories of the musical genius. I’m one of them.

Today “this is what it sounds like, when Doves Cry.” Now we know the sound. It’s deafening.

Celebrities pass away all the time. In fact, 2 more this week alone. However, when losing one feels so personal and heavy in your heart as Prince does, you truly realize the impact he has had on a generation, an entire industry and the world. Maybe the word genius is overused in some capacity but there really are very few deserving of that adjective. Prince is absolutely one of them.

Today marks the second time I’ve felt deep sadness and emotion in reaction to the loss of a celebrity. The first was when we lost Robin Williams. Today is the second. Today is extremely heartbreaking.

There isn’t much I can say that hasn’t been said already about Prince. His music evokes memories for all who grew up living it while it was being created. I explained to my kids today what he meant to me. I described my walkman and how music was on cassettes when I listened to Prince over and over again. I wore out my cassettes so when CDs came out, I upgraded my Prince collection. I remember how badly I wanted to see Purple Rain as a teen. I wasn’t allowed to watch it at first and when it finally came out on network TV (you know, edited for all audiences) I was finally allowed to watch it. I watched it so often after that, I’ve lost count on how much. From that first view, the color purple became meaningful for me. Even my kids know that is my favorite color and now they understand how Prince is the reason why. Purple Rain.

I spent most of my teenage years hanging out with musicians and writing music with many of them. I wrote so much poetry growing up and the next logical step was lyrics. Prince was such an inspiration for those of us who loved to create with words and song. He was just…wow. Really if you are a creative brain and grew up in the 80s, Prince just blew your mind. Purple Rain directly inspired a song I wrote in the early 90s. His lyrical and musical genius has forever impacted countless artists and opened the floodgates of imagination and other great works.

I’m actually in tears writing this because his influence on my world is so deep, personal, emotional, inspirational and unforgettable. I really can’t describe it any better so I’ll let Prince take it from here.

Purple Rain in the rain decades later.

1999 seemed so far away when this song was released. “Party like it’s 1999” has become a catchphrase that still hasn’t gone out of style. In fact, ironically today, I saw a commercial that used this very phrase. Prince coined the phrase of a century that will continue live on.

Love everything about this solo guitar set. Everything.

And because he made another song I love even better by covering it, I have to share this. Radiohead can always hold an honor not many other artists can…being covered by a legend.

“How could you just leave me standing, alone in a world that’s so cold…”   “Why do we scream at each other? This is what it sounds like when doves cry.”

Good-night, sweet prince.

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Grammar Nerds Rejoice as Word Crimes Exposed

This short and sweet blog post is on a subject near and dear to me: grammar. I am a stickler for proper grammar. As an English major and professional journalist for most of my life, I know other Grammar Gurus will understand when I say that social media posts make me cringe daily. I am always so distracted by careless misspellings and bad grammar to fully enjoy reading newspapers and online news sites as well.

When I met my now boyfriend of 3 years, it was grammar that got him that first reply. The first text he ever sent me was a paragraph of full sentences, proper grammar and spelling. There were no text abbreviations. I noticed immediately and thought it was so unusual, especially in a text from a man. I loved it! True story. He even uses proper punctuation in text messages. Good grammar can serve a purpose in all aspects of your life, even love.

Thank you “Weird Al” Yankovic for giving the grammar nerds everywhere an outlet for our frustrations. If you struggle with proper grammar, bookmark this link for a handy little guide and the bonus of a catchy tune to bop around to at your desk! 

Enjoy and share!

Why Mike Rowe Very Much Represents The Perfect Guy

To all the men out there, I advise you take notes. Ladies, if you aren’t yet old enough to appreciate the traits I am about to explain, bookmark this page and come back when you are in your mid-thirties. It should hit you by then.

Mike Rowe is probably best known as the star of the hit TV show, “Dirty Jobs,” in which he traveled to all 50 states and completed 300 of the world’s “Dirtiest Jobs.”  Unfortunately, he somehow ran out of dirty jobs, but has found a new place on TV with “Somebody’s Gotta Do It” on CNN, 10 p.m. Eastern, Sunday nights.

What makes Mike Rowe the perfect guy? It has a lot more to do with Mike Rowe off camera than it does with his on screen personality, although I adore that side of him too. Mike is also known as the narrative voice behind “Deadliest Catch,” “After the Catch” and many more.  Mike wrote a great biography on his website if you want to enjoy learning more about his career as the “Dirtiest Man on TV.”

Now that you are up to speed on Mike Rowe’s resume, here’s my list of what makes him a fine representative of the “Perfect Guy.” These are not in any particular order because to me, they are all equally valuable qualities that we should strive for.

1.  Mike Rowe is a “man’s man.” In his logged hours on “Dirty Jobs,” Mike has gotten down and dirty with the most disgusting and nauseating creatures, excrement and just about anything else you can think of. While most men are known to gag when changing the diapers of their own spawn, Mike Rowe would handle the task with ease. He’d be the dad that doesn’t run and hide from vomit, feces and the grossness of his children. Women, this is a rare and winning trait!

BONUS: He will be the guy who catches the mouse or spider for all of you ladies who stand on chairs squealing in fear. (Plus he’ll probably just relocate it instead of killing it.) While Mike doesn’t have any children of his own, he would be a great to have on hand during the infant and toddler stages of life for sure. A man who isn’t afraid to get his hands wet, dirty, smelly and well, you get the picture…that’s one you want by your side.

Black with bone and holding plant production Manager Jeff Booms’ son, Colin, is “Dirty Jobs” host Mike Rowe at Ebonex Corp. in Melvindale. The company specializes in using charred animal bones to create other products. (Photo courtesy of Ebonex Corp.)
(Photo courtesy of Ebonex Corp.)

2.   Mike Rowe is outspoken about his passion to keep our future generations working and learning trades. Again, he doesn’t have children of his own, but he cares about yours. He knows the importance of skilled workers and even started a foundation to help keep these trades alive and thriving. As Mike’s website states, “The Skill Gap is widening. The mikeroweWORKS Foundation started a campaign to challenge the absurd believe that a four-year degree is the only path to success. ” Mike auctions off various items of C.R.A.P. (Collectibles Rare And Precious) to raise money for scholarships and other programs funded by his non-profit. This guy is truly dedicated to passing down the traits that we love about him. He wants our kids to stop being afraid of getting dirty! He wants them to build, create, fix and make shit happen! Ladies, you all know that a man that can work hard, muscles flexing, is quite attractive. (This goes for women too…manual labor shows our hidden strengths!)

3. Mike Rowe is genuine and funny. This may be two of the most important traits in a man. You need a guy who is going to be honest, even if it isn’t what you want to hear (yet have tact). A guy who can make you laugh through it all is golden. Men love to see us happy, smiling and laughing because of them.  A man who can make you laugh just by being himself is a gem!

He'll make you laugh

4. Mike Rowe is humble. He loves his fans and appreciates the platform he has to share messages promoting his humanitarian efforts with lots of laughs along the way. He uses his powers for good and does it with ease. He doesn’t take himself too seriously most of the time and he answers his fans personally. He doesn’t avoid any feedback, good or bad, and addresses them all with a style that this writer truly appreciates. Mike is the author behind all of his own social media posts from his blog to his Facebook page. His Facebook page is one of the best reads on the internet, without a doubt. He may have shown up to the scene a little bit later than most of us, but he’s more than made up for it!

5. Mike Rowe is not afraid of politicians and big corporate interests. He’s also not oblivious to them. This may be an extension of the last reason, but still another reason to love Mike Rowe. A man who not only stands up for what he believes in but goes to battle for it is one you want in your corner.

Click image to see entire post.
Click image to see entire post.

6.  Mike Rowe is a gentleman. Have you ever seen a tabloid story about him behaving otherwise? No? That’s because he is. He’s lighthearted about it but he makes it clear to his fans about what he will and will not tolerate on his social media pages.  I’m pretty sure his parents are proud!

7. Mike Rowe cleans up nicely! Sure, you want a guy who isn’t afraid to get dirty but it’s nice that he’ll clean up for a night out with you too. It’s always fun to enjoy your guy all dressed up and out on the town with you on his arm!

Cleans up nicely

8.  Mike Rowe loves his parents and allows the rest of the world to adore them too. Seriously, they are adorable! How could any woman not want these two as their in-laws? I am writing my plea of adoption as we speak. You never can have too many amusing and fun parental guides in your life. I am lucky to have quite a few beyond the ones in my bloodline who give me a lot of material for future posts. I love how much entertainment and joy they exude and how Mike brings them along for the ride of his unique career. They deserve every second of admiration! Yes, those are his parents in the commercial spots for his current show as seen in the clip above. Love!! For the record, the commercial spots are re-creations of actual conversations Mike had with his parents leading up to the new show. You can see where he gets his sense of humor from! The way a man treats his parents (especially his Mom) says a lot about how he’ll treat you.

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9. Mike Rowe loves the little dogs too. He’s an animal lover. But there is something adorable about a big guy who adopts a little lap dog and isn’t afraid to share his love for his pooch with the world. Perhaps the most golden posts on Mike’s Facebook page occur at the end of every work week when readers check in to read “Fridays with Freddy.” Mike turns the page over to his spunky little roommate and what comes after is always delightful. His willingness to take a back seat as Freddy’s “Biped” and hand over the spotlight is endearing. Freddy has become a celebrity in his own right as obvious by the fans who call his name when he’s out with his biped.  A big, strong tough guy who melts for his little dog is just…well, perfect.

Mike and Freddy
Freddy and his Biped

10. Mike Rowe represents the everyday guy we know and love. We all know that guy we can rely on to be there for many reasons, whether it’s to fix something we broke or help us through a heart break, he’s the good guy we are thankful to have in our lives.

Everyday guy

If you have a man in your life like Mike Rowe, you’re a lucky gal. I am proud to say I have a Dad who has influenced this list and made it immediately clear to me why Mike Rowe is the type of guy ladies should appreciate. I also have a great guy who makes me swoon with every dirty job he tackles around my house for me and with me. So ladies, I encourage you to not settle, encourage your kids to learn some life skills and don’t be afraid to get a little dirty too! Men, if you are a hard working hands on guy, thank you! Share your talents with your kids. Someday, they will appreciate it!

If you enjoyed my list, please feel free to share. Most importantly, I ask that you all check out The mikeroweWORKS Foundation and see what you can do to help get involved. In all seriousness, he’s doing great things for our kids and the future of our skilled trades.

Hopefully someday I’ll get to interview Mike for this blog and ask him about all the traits in this list as well as his amazing foundation!

~JerseyGirlBlog