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Pop Culture

Inspiration for new 'A League of Their Own' show comes out at 95, proving it's never too late

“I hid for 75, 85 years," she said.

maybelle blair, a league of their own, coming out
Jeff Neira/Prime Video

Maybelle Blair at the Tribeca Film Festival.

Thirty years ago, one of the greatest sports movies of all time (IMO), "A League of Their Own," was released. It's hard to believe it's been 30 years since many of us first learned about the All-American Girls Baseball League. What people may not realize is that the story isn't over. A new series, created by Abbi Jacobson, is coming to Amazon Prime Video in August. The promo tour has already begun and it looks like the creators of the show are featuring women who were actually a part of the AAGPBL.

One of those women is Maybelle "All the way Mae" Blair, who played for the Peoria Redwings. During a recent panel at the Tribeca Film Festival, Blair, 95, decided that was as good a time as any to come out.

“I hid for 75, 85 years and this is actually basically the first time I’ve ever come out," Blair said to rousing chorus of cheers.


The show's official Instagram account shared the video of Blair with the caption: "For the majority of her life, sports legend 95-year old AAGPBL player, Maybelle Blair felt like she had to hide her authentic self. Today she came out publicly for the first time. We couldn't be happier for her, and continue to push for love, acceptance, and education on and off the field."

“I think it’s a great opportunity for these young girl ball players to come [to] realize that they’re not alone, and you don’t have to hide,” Blair said, speaking about younger generations of female athletes.

Sometimes it's easy to forget that there was a time where being "out" was actually dangerous, especially for women. In the 1940s, women were already discriminated against. If you were out as a lesbian, your options for work and survival were incredibly limited. While there is sometimes an assumption that women in sports are queer, back when Blair was playing baseball, she couldn't be open about it. According to a league history from the AAGPBL website, "femininity was a high priority." Yes, femme lesbians existed, but it wasn't something they could be open about. The women couldn't even go out without a chaperone!

Queerness is baked into the fabric of the reboot, which Blair was hired as a consultant for. Just because it wasn't talked about in the past doesn't mean those women didn't exist, as Blair obviously shows.

“I thought I was the only one in the world,” Blair said during the panel, as reported by IndieWire. She added that the community of the AAGPBL allowed her a safe place.

IndieWire also reported that Jamie Babbit, director of the show's pilot episode, spent time at the AAGPBL convention in Cooperstown, where the National Baseball Hall of Fame is, after being hired. “There was a queerness in the air and just really joyful, amazing women who I just wanted to hang out with. I really wanted to bring that joy to the show,” she said.

In addition to coming out and being a consultant for the show, Blair has another mission: getting the International Women’s Baseball Center museum built. The Los Angeles Times reported that there is land available in Rockford, Illinois, across from where the Rockford Peaches used to play baseball. But they need funds. Blair, a tireless advocate for baseball and softball for women, is determined to help make it happen.

“I hope to God that I can get the shovel going into the ground before I’m on the other side of the grass because I’ve got to live long enough to see this happen," she said.

Maybelle Blair is truly an inspiration, and I'm so glad we get to share her story.

Family

Professional tidier Marie Kondo says she's 'kind of given up' after having three kids

Hearing Kondo say, 'My home is messy,' is sparking joy for moms everywhere.

Marie Kondo playing with her daughters.

Marie Kondo's book, "The Life-Changing Art of Tidying Up," has repeatedly made huge waves around the world since it came out in 2010. From eliminating anything that didn't "spark joy" from your house to folding clothes into tiny rectangles and storing them vertically, the KonMari method of maintaining an organized home hit the mark for millions of people. The success of her book even led to two Netflix series.

It also sparked backlash from parents who insisted that keeping a tidy home with children was not so simple. It's one thing to get rid of an old sweater that no longer brings you joy. It's entirely another to toss an old, empty cereal box that sparks zero joy for you, but that your 2-year-old is inexplicably attached to.

To be fair, Kondo never forced her way into anyone's home and made them organize it her way. But also to be fair, she didn't have kids when she wrote her best-selling book on keeping a tidy home. The reality is that keeping a home organized and tidy with children living in it is a whole other ballgame, as Kondo has discovered now that she has three kids of her own.

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Pop Culture

13-year-old ventriloquist sings incredible, sassy version of 'You Don't Own Me' on 'AGT'

Ana-Maria Mărgean only started her hobby in 2020 and is already wowing audiences on "America's Got Talent."

America's Got Talent/Youtube

Ana-Maria Mărgean singing "You Don't Own Me" on "America's Got Talent"

It’s not every day a ventriloquist act is so jaw-dropping that it has to be seen to be believed. But when it does happen, it’s usually on “America’s Got Talent.”

Ana-Maria Mărgean was only 11 years old when she first took to the stage on “Romania’s Got Talent” to show off her ventriloquism skills, an act inspired by videos of fellow ventriloquist and “America’s Got Talent” Season 2 champion Terry Fator.

Using puppets built for her by her parents, the young performer tirelessly spent her quarantine time in 2020 learning how to bring them to life, which led to her receiving a Golden Buzzer and eventually winning the entire series in Romania.

Mărgean is now 13 and a competitor on this season of “America’s Got Talent: All-Stars,” hoping to be crowned the winner and perform her own show in Vegas, just like her hero Fator.

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All illustrations are provided by Soosh and used with permission.

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The study, a follow-up from one conducted in 2014, administered tests using identically dressed black and white volunteers attempting to cross the same intersection. The 2014 study revealed black male pedestrians waited 32% longer than white male pedestrians for cars to stop. The 2017 research expanded on these tests to include black and white women and marked versus unmarked crosswalks.

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6 lessons in making life choices based on the wisdom of Warren Buffett

These are the six factors Warren Buffett says he considers when he's making big business decisions.

Warren Buffett speaking at the 2015 Select USA Investment Summit.

True
TD Ameritrade

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Buffett straight up spelled out how he makes decisions on how to invest in and acquire businesses in a public letter sent to his shareholders. To be clear: His instincts and insights are what have made him such a rich man. And that's what he's sharing so openly with the world.

These are the six factors Warren Buffett says he considers when he's making big business decisions.

Maybe they could help the rest of us think through some tough decisions in our own lives? Let's see.

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Pennsylvania home is the entrance to a cave that’s been closed for 70 years

You can only access the cave from the basement of the home and it’s open for business.

This Pennsylvania home is the entrance to a cave.

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The home sits between Greencastle and Mercersburg, Pennsylvania, and houses a pretty unique public secret. There's a cave in the basement. Not a man cave or a basement that makes you feel like you're in a cave, but an actual cave that you can't get to unless you go through the house.

Turns out the cave was discovered in the 1830s on the land of John Coffey, according to Uncovering PA, but the story of how it was found is unclear. People would climb down into the cave to explore occasionally until the land was leased about 100 years later and a small structure was built over the cave opening.

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