Jenelle Evans to Pen Memoir, Share Inspiring Life Story?

What’s a girl to do after joining 16 & Pregnant, graduating to Teen Mom, then achieving a surprising level of celebrity for having unprotected sex as a teen?

If you’re Farrah Abraham, become a hard core porn star, erotic novelist and wannabe musician, as well as write a memoir, My Teenage Dream Ended.

Now it looks like Jenelle Evans is following suit … with the last part, at least. Like Farrah, Kailyn Lowry and Maci Bookout, she’s reportedly writing a book!

Jenelle and Nathan Griffith Picture

This week, Jenelle Evans tweeted to her fans that when she gets time, she will be writing down the sordid details of her past and how she overcame them.

It’s an inspiring story if ever there were one.

Clearly, Jenelle has some EPIC tales to tell. The term wild child seems almost too tame to describe her in some of her craziest moments (below).

She’s also getting things back on track lately, and kudos to her for that, but are we expected to believe the turnaround is as complete as she makes it sound?

Nathan Griffith is a step up from Kieffer Delp, Gary Head and especially Courtland Rogers. They seem happy together as they await their baby next month.

But will the current state of bliss last?

Jenelle Evans Shower Selfie

Jenelle Evans poses for a shower selfie with Nathan Griffith. Too cute or TMI?

It’s rare that people just wake up one day, decide to turn their entire lives around and accomplish that, as she claims she has, without more bumps in the road.

She’s in a stable relationship, getting close to baby Kaiser’s due date and even getting along with her mom Barbara and getting back into school.

All of these are true, and there’s something cathartic (and lucrative!) in revisiting the past to share with others in hopes of helping them avoid similar pitfalls.

The issue for Jenelle is that the past is not too distant, and may still repeat itself if she’s not careful. She may need to focus on making sure she’s better.

Instant best-seller as it would be, she should probably take a step back. In doing so, she’d only make for a more convincing tome in a year or two.

Re-establishing her relationship with firstborn Jace, giving birth and taking care of Kaiser, and working on things with Nathan would likely be more worthwhile.

We just don’t need her to revert to this …

Jenelle Evans Beating Up Girl

Will Jenelle Evans go to jail over this fight with Britany Truett? It’s certainly a possibility.

Fiat Chrysler Backpedals on Five-Year Plan


The saying goes, “shoot for the moon and even if you miss you’ll land among the stars,” and it seems that Fiat Chrysler is taking it to heart. 

After announcing a set of lofty goals for its multitude of brands last week, Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne is now saying that even if the goal to sell 7 million cars by 2018 is not met, the company will still be much stronger than today. “The targets are the targets. But even if I miss it by 10 percent, from where I am today, it’s like [the] midget and the Jolly Green Giant,” said Marchionne.

SEE ALSO: What you Need to Know About Fiat Chrysler’s Five-Year Plan

Following the announcement last week, Fiat shares took a 13.5 percent dip as many analysts said that the plans were too ambitious. Marchionne wants 7 million sales by 2018, up from 4.4 million in 2013 and a fivefold increase in net profit. Individually, he pegged Alfa Romeo at 150,000 sales by 2018, up from the 0 cars that it sells now.

“The exercise of leadership requires the setting of some pretty bold objectives. The house needs direction. The plan is a structure that provides direction. So don’t quibble about whether I sell 400,000 Alfas or I sell 382,000,” Marchionne finished.

[Source: Automotive News]

Discuss this story at our Chrysler Forum

The post Fiat Chrysler Backpedals on Five-Year Plan appeared first on News.

Beyonce: Wedding Ring Tattoo Removed?!

In the wake of the Solange Knowles-Jay Z fight, it seemed at first as though Beyonce had avoided taking sides.

She traveled to Costa Rica with her sister, then sat courtside with her husband at NBA playoff games.

New evidence indicates, however, that Bey might be choosing Solange over Hov for reasons that remain a mystery.

First, Beyonce posted new Instagram photos with Solange in what appeared to be a message to the world that the sisters are closer than ever.

Now, some believe that recent photos of Beyonce show that Mrs. Carter has begun the process of having a symbolic tattoo removed from her wedding ring finger. 

The small tatt – which reads “IV” in commemoration of the couple’s birthdays and wedding anniversary – has served as a symbol of Bey’s commitment to her megastar husband, and now it appears to have been replaced by a small scar.

Could the hip hop/R&B power couple be headed for divorce? Is Bey just keeping up appearances by attending public events with her husband?

All we know for sure is that Jay did something to royally piss off his sister-in-law on the night of the MET Gala, and whatever it was might be tied to the mysterious smudge where the tattoo symbolizing Beyonce’s marriage used to be it.

In case you somehow haven’t seen it already, check out the footage of Solange attacking Jay Z below:

Jay Z to Serve as Kanye West’s Best Man?

We interrupt our hourly coverage of Solange Knowles attacking Jay Z to bring you news of a different kind about this rapper:

He’s going to the Kimye wedding after all! As Kanye West’s Best Man!

  • Jay Z and Beyonce MET Gala Pic
  • Kimye in New York

Earlier reports had claimed Jay Z and Beyonce would not even be attending the festivities in Paris, but Radar Online says Jay recently sent Kanye a gift that made his intentions clear.

“It was a gold-plated, diamond-encrusted flask, delivered with a $10,000 bottle of scotch, for Kanye to have for his wedding day,” the source says, adding that Jay Z inscribed the present with the words “Best Man.”

The insider adds that West “was almost jumping up and down, he was so excited” over Jay’s attendance… which is something we’d have paid good money to see.

There is one caveat to Jay’s participation, however: neither he nor Beyonce wants to appear on Keepng Up with the Kardashians.

As a result, cameras will reportedly roll before and after the wedding – but not during the actual ceremony.

“E! wants to shoot the rehearsal dinner, but Jay is putting his foot down,” Radar writes. “So the drama continues. Instead, Kim and Kanye are now in talks with Vogue to publish some wedding photos.”

The wedding is still set for May 24 in Paris.

Mila Kunis: Paparazzi Meltdown Caught on Camera!

Mila Kunis is pregnant, so maybe she thinks the rule against paparazzi taking baby photos should start at conception.

Or maybe she’s just pissed that she’s been caught in her sweats looking less like the sexiest woman alive than usual.

Mila Kunis Angry Photo

Mila is mad! In this photo, Ashton Kutcher intervenes while Mila screams at some paparazzi.

Either way, Mila was quite vocal about her displeasure with the paps while walking her dogs in the Hollywood Hills yesterday.

There’s no word yet on what caused Mila’s meltdown but witnesses say it’s a good thing the Kutch was on-hand to intervene.

According to onlookers, “Ashton had to restrain her, guiding her back onto their property.”

Yikes. You know things are bad when people are happy to see Ashton Kutcher step onto the scene.

We kid. But in all seriousness, we’d imagine people taking your picture against your will when you’re pregnant and just trying to take your dogs for a walk is seriously annoying.

Fortunately, Mila only has to deal with unwanted paparazzi attention when she’s toting her kid around for a few more months.

Once the baby is born, the #NoKids policy takes full effect and Mila is fully justified in upping rage to the level of physical violence.

Woe unto the pap who snaps the Baby Kutch.

Mila Kunis: Baby Bump Pic

Mila Kunis at an event with Channing Tatum. Think she’s hiding something?

Will de Blasio Doom His Own Housing Plan?

Photo via Getty Images.

Photo via Getty Images.

Mayor Bill de Blasio just announced his 10-year housing plan to build and preserve 200,000 affordable apartments, but he may have already doomed it to failure.

The city’s single largest source of existing affordable housing is now threatened by the mayor’s Rent Guidelines Board (RGB), which voted for a possible rent freeze for nearly 1 million rent-stabilized apartments. One of his RGB appointees even voted for a rent rollback of up to 6 percent!

A rent freeze may make good campaign rhetoric, but it would be disastrous public policy. A rent freeze adopted in Westchester County resulted in the wholesale conversion of stabilized apartments to co-ops and condos, and the city experienced its own wave of conversions in the recent past. The same could certainly result again if owners cannot muster enough rent to pay their bills.

Acknowledging the rising costs of operating rental properties, the mayor’s housing plan says that the increase in utility and fuel costs alone has “eroded bottom lines for property owners, which can lead to deferral of maintenance and capital needs.” Yet the mayor’s rent board threatens to make rental housing even more precarious by proposing a rent freeze and inadequate levels of rent increase.

Rental property owners want to provide safe, well-maintained, affordable housing for our tenants, but the cost of providing these services keeps rising. This is a fact.

The RGB itself measured a 5.7 percent increase in building operating costs last year, with most of these costs imposed directly by government through continually increasing real estate taxes and water charges, regulatory compliance costs and mandated improvements.

As a result, owners pass 30 to 40 cents of every rent dollar right back to the government, which uses that revenue to fund city services (police, fire, sanitation) and social services (rent subsidies).

By virtue of maintaining and operating their buildings, owners create jobs in our neighborhoods and support local businesses. In 2013, the city’s rent-stabilized housing alone spent $10 billion and supported 160,000 jobs to maintain and improve a housing stock that largely predates Word War II.

Why would a Mayor de Blasio-appointed RGB want to shut down an economic engine that contributes substantially to the city and state economy and serves as the backbone for the vitality of the city’s varied neighborhoods?

The RGB’s concession to the economic reality of ever-rising operating costs is the possibility of rent increases up to 3 percent for a one-year lease and 4.5 percent for a two-year lease but still below the 4 percent and 7.75 percent increases approved last year when there was a similar rise in operating costs.

The RGB has historically never approved rent increases at the top of its proposed preliminary range. So the rental industry is looking at zero or, at best, inadequate rent increases this year—and potentially for the tenure of this administration.

Without necessary rent increases in the long term, housing conditions for tenants will deteriorate, and the industry will support fewer jobs and generate less tax revenue. This is not the promise of the mayor’s housing plan.

The mayor’s housing plan relies on the survival of the existing affordable rental housing. But that stock cannot survive on a rent freeze or inadequate increases. As long as building operating costs increase, rents will have to rise.

We understand this financial reality could be a problem for impoverished households, to which government must respond with increased rent subsidies, just as the government recently did by increasing to $50,000 the annual income eligibility threshold for the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption Program. Government needs to provide more rent subsidies to help needy households cope with the reality of increases costs. 

The mayor may not be able to freeze property taxes and water charges to help keep rent increases low, but a revamp of the property tax system to reduce the relative burden on rental properties should be in the housing plan.

The mayor could also reduce costly government mandates and provide relief from nuisance administrative fees and penalties as he has promised to do for other small businesses.

We want to work with the mayor to make sure his housing plan is a success, not a disaster. The decision on rent increases for 2014 by the mayor’s Rent Guidelines Board will be an early indicator of whether the city’s rental market and economy continue to thrive and grow—and whether his housing plan will succeed.

The mayor will find many willing and able partners, as long as his goals are reasonable and realistic. We’ll know on June 23, when the RGB votes on final rent guidelines, if the mayor will succeed in preserving the city’s affordable housing.

Aaron Sirulnick is the chairman of the Rent Stabilization Association.

As Cannes opens, so does a Steak ‘n Shake


CANNES, FRANCE—The Cannes Film Festival opens tonight with “Grace of Monaco”—and just down the street from the Palais, a Steak ‘n Shake opened at noon. Was it a tribute? Roger Ebert’s love for the fast-food chain is well-documented. Chaz Ebert tells me she hadn’t heard anything about a branch opening in Cannes, and a spokesman for Kartemquin Films, the production company behind the Ebert documentary “Life Itself,” didn’t know of a connection with the film’s May 19 festival screening. Questioning in the restaurant itself prompted a puzzled response from staff: “Who is Roger Ebert?”

The site’s operations director, who declined to give his name because of Steak ‘n Shake’s no-media policy, called it the first Steak ‘n Shake in Europe, though on May 1, the company’s Facebook page indicated the inauguration of a planned location in Ibiza, Spain. The timing of opening day could be a coincidence, having more to do with the massive crowds the festival brings than with the fact that attendees are in town for a film-related event with which this site’s namesake had a long-standing association. Still, it’s striking that the restaurant is 50 paces from Hotel Splendid, where Ebert stayed during his time at Cannes. (His regular suite is now named after him.)

Apart from the burgers, I’m here for the movies. I’ll be blogging again alongside my colleagues Barbara Scharres and Michał Oleszczyk, and as with last year, I’m planning to put a special emphasis to what I think of as “alterna-Cannes“—movies a bit off the beaten path. The hype tends to center on the competition, the section of Cannes’ official selection in which established auteurs like Mike Leigh and David Cronenberg vie for the Palme d’Or. But down the street, there are two parallel festivals: Directors’ Fortnight, founded in 1969 in the wake of the 1968 festival’s shutdown, to offer a more adventurous program than the main slate; and Critics’ Week, which focuses on first and second features. The official selection also includes several sidebars—Out of Competition, Special Screenings—of varying levels of prestige, but every lineup here ends up hosting its share of critical favorites. Last year, “All Is Lost” played outside the competition.

Beyond the marquee titles, the movies I’m looking forward to include a new Frederick Wiseman documentary (about London’s National Gallery), a horror film of sorts from indie director David Robert Mitchell (whose wistful teen movie “The Myth of the American Sleepover” was about as far removed from horror as could be imagined), and Abel Ferrara’s likely-to-be-volatile “Welcome to New York,” which is screening off-fest. The movie stars Gérard Depardieu as a figure modeled on Dominique Strauss-Kahn, whose arrest made headlines during Cannes 2011. Capitalizing on the publicity machine here, Ferrara’s film will debut on a French streaming platform while the festival is progress. It won’t be long before you can attend alterna-Cannes in your very own home.

Read the rest of our coverage of Cannes here and don’t miss the following special events at the festival:

Screening of “LIFE ITSELF,” in Cannes Classics: Monday, May 19, at 5 pm in Bunuel.

IN CONVERSATION with Steve James and Chaz Ebert about “Life Itself,” at the American Pavilion, Wednesday, May 21 at 11 am.

THE ROGER EBERT FILM CRITICS PANEL: at the American Pavilion, Thursday, May 22 at 3 pm. Moderated by Michael Phillips (Chicago Tribune), including Eric Kohn (Indiewire), AA Dowd (The Onion AV Club)

Freeze the Rent! Power to the People! May Day!

Last Tuesday, the Rent Guidelines Board voted to approve a proposed rent renewal increase ranging from 0 to 3 percent for one-year renewals and 0.5 to 4.5 percent for two-year leases.

You read that right: 0 percent.

This fulfills a “rent freeze” campaign pledge that Mayor Bill de Blasio made. But it’s also a very bad idea.

Rent control and stabilization are, if not a “necessary evil,” at best a “necessary not-very-good.” But the Observer accepts the idea that in a city desperately short of housing, there have to be some artificial caps on cost (though the better solution would clearly be allowing more units to be built).

That said, it’s pure lunacy to command landlords to accept zero increase in yearly rents. It just doesn’t match the realities that owners face. Is the mayor going to give these landlords a property tax freeze, as well? Will the cost of superintendents, water, construction supplies and a hundred other things that landlords provide suddenly stay frozen? Don’t count on it.

Unfortunately, this is the magical realism you get when there’s an entire political class, from mayor to speaker to council, who have not only never run anything but in many cases have literally never held a real job.

This is dangerous.

It is easy to paint landlords as greedy and tenants as the victims of that greed. Not only is that simplistic—it’s just wrong. Many owners are barely making it, and many tenants have taken outrageous advantage of rent laws that are wildly skewed in favor of renters. It doesn’t take a political genius to see why that would be: There are way more votes to be had from renters than owners.

But that doesn’t mean that zero is good for anybody, renters included.

No one expects anyone to cry for the landlords. But the housing crisis in New York is mainly one of insufficient supply. Branding landlords as pariahs who must shoulder their increased costs by themselves is not the way to incentivize more building. Furthermore, no one but the most naïve—as in, someone who has never held a private-sector job—would believe that services will be delivered as effectively when a landlord is being asked to pay more for them without a commensurate increase in rent.

This is silly, opportunistic policy-making designed to pander rather than solve problems. We urge a more thoughtful approach.

Roto’s Magic Act Killer New Record

If you’re the sort of person who longs to hear a good old-fashioned rock album—not just an assemblage of audio files on a hard drive but a Complete Work, whose contents sound like they belong together—then you’re in luck. This week sees the release of a catchy, slick (in a good way), intelligent, coherent collection that you could easily imagine experiencing on vinyl, although its 60-minute duration means you’d need two discs to do it justice. (All the better for the true hardcore, of course.) It’s by a New York-based band called Roto’s Magic Act, and its title is Into the Unknown.

The leader of Roto’s Magic Act is James Rotondi, who’s shared his guitaristic talents with a number of groups over the years, including Air, Mr. Bungle, The Grassy Knoll, and Rachael Ray’s husband John Cusimano’s band, The Cringe. Into the Unknown is the Magic Act’s debut, but Mr. Rotondi did release an earlier album of solo songs, Summer Home, in 2009. (Full disclosure: He’s also a journalist, and I worked for a while in the same editorial office with him, on different magazines, back in the last decade.)

A mutual friend of ours once described him, half admiringly and half enviously, as “the handsomest man in music journalism.” Check out the video to judge the accuracy of that statement for yourself. Although his muscular, inventive guitar playing was what earned him a spot in previous outfits, Roto happens to be a clever songwriter with refined pop sensibilities and a strong singer whose vocal timbre suggests a higher-pitched Beck. Much like Elvis Costello, he’s an ardent fan of puns and extended metaphor. Sometimes overextended; when he sings about a romantic relationship “going south,” he can’t resist the temptation to add lines about catfish, pulled pork, and Huck Finn.

Musical reference points on Into the Unknown are decidedly ’70s-centric, ranging from Nick Drake to Big Star, the Eagles to Pink Floyd. And speaking of the latter, the rather Floydian sound effects that link many of the tracks—circus music, the pounding of typewriter keys, a lone wolf howling—only further the feeling that the whole album is a unified statement. The danger of pretentiousness looms, but Mr. Rotondi’s easy way with a melody helps him avoid the appearance of overreach.

The video at the top of the page captures a recent live Magic Act performance of Into the Unknown’s grand opener, “Circus Clown.” It emphasizes Roto’s blues-rock side, which is a fine side indeed, though I personally prefer it when his tunes become artier and more discursive in the style of Queen and Jellyfish, as on tracks like “Strays” and “The Old Trapdoor.” In any case, the clip will give you a decent insight into what constitutes the magic of this Act.

Roto’s Magic Act will be playing a record release show this Friday at 11 PM at Pete’s Candy Store in Williamsburg.

LIVE: Bill Clinton discusses debt, deficit and economic inequality with Gwen Ifill

Former President Bill Clinton will speak with Gwen Ifill at 11 a.m. today. Live now: Sens. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) with CBS News Congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes.

Former President Bill Clinton will discuss debt, deficit, economic growth and inequality Wednesday with Gwen Ifill. The discussion is part of the 2014 Fiscal Summit sponsored by the Peterson Foundation in Washington, D.C.

PBS NewsHour will live stream Clinton’s conversation, which begins at 11 a.m. Watch that in the player above.

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