Season recap for the ‘Devious Maids’ fans who missed it

“Devious Maids” is back! The season two premiere picked up right where season one left off; and if your jaw dropped during the first season, it will be dismantled this season.

What I love about the series so far is the insane blend of melodrama, comedy, and satire. Sometimes, I want to watch a show that isn’t about saving the world from climate change or giving me tips on how to stay fit and active so I can live to be 130 years old. Sometimes, I want fantasy and laughter with a shot of sarcasm. I get that with this show. I think others want that, too.

One thing I that I find odd are the comments from some that the show is racist, or is only focused on stereotypes of Latina women. Executive producer Marc Cherry has a way of taking negative stereotypes and turning them into positives. Remember “Desperate Housewives?” Eva Longoria as Gabrielle Solis? She was wealthy and successful with a maid of her own. Longoria is now co-executive producer of “Devious Maids.” Also, I’m sure that Carmen and Marisol are college educated. Marisol was the one who figured out that it was Philippe (Stephen Collins) who killed Flora (Paula Garces) in the first season. I don’t believe Longoria would get behind a show that would mock her heritage; not even for a sizable paycheck.

This season, a few of the maids are moving into Beverly Hills mansions of their own. Ana Ortiz’s character, Marisol, is living in a classic Beverly Hills mansion with a devious maid of her own! Roselyn Sanchez’s character, Carmen, has also hit the Beverly Hills jackpot. She may become the next famous singer with her own mansion. For now, though, she’s playing the beard to Latin pop star Alejandro. I think that will change soon. I won’t give away spoilers, but let’s just say it looks like Alejandro’s (and quite possibly, Carmen’s) time in the limelight is fading…fast! If you thought Brenda, Dylan, and the rest of the gang from 90210 had issues, then the characters on this show belong in an insane asylum!

There’s no good or bad on “Devious Maids”—only vindictive and more vindictive! While not all of the maids get down and dirty, there are others who can be just as vindictive and cunning as their bosses. Those are the ones who are qualified to move up the ladder (Carmen and Marisol). Is that not at least partially true in our society? Many (not all) of the people who are in a position of power didn’t get there because they were painfully nice. They got there because they weren’t afraid to ruffle a few feathers and shatter some glass. So, if you want to make it in Beverly Hills as a maid or a mogul, remember this: if you’re rich, someone will want to kill you; if you’re a maid, someone will want to kill you. In the meantime, have great sex, throw back a few drinks, and enjoy the view!

“Devious Maids” airs on Sundays at 10 p.m. on Lifetime.

Terps with the win, send the Seminoles and their Tomahawk Chop home (83-71)

Saturday, Feb. 8 brought the second matchup between Maryland and Florida State within a 30-day period.  When the Terrapins traveled to Tallahassee in January, they lost 85-61. This game marks the final matchup during regular season play between these two teams, and Maryland’s fifth to final home game as part of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC).  The Terps entered the game 13-10 overall, 5-5 in the ACC; while the Seminoles were 14-8 overall, 5-5 in the ACC.

Starting for the Terps were sophomores Seth Allen, Charles Mitchell, and Jake Layman and juniors Evan Smotrycz and Dez Wells.  Sophomores Aaron Thomas, Montay Brandon, and Michael Ojo and seniors Okaro White and Robert Gilchrist started for the ‘Noles.

Aaron Thomas began gameplay for the Seminoles with a big shot behind the arc to put FSU three over on Maryland. Off a foul by FSU’s Michael Ojo, MD’s Evan Smotrycz went to the line, hitting one of his two free throws.  Then, a steal and dunk by Jake Layman tied the game 3-3.  Florida State answered back with a dunk of their own by Michael Ojo.  Seth Allen came up big for Maryland with a 3-pointer, followed by a layup by Charles Mitchell to put the Terps up by three (8-5) at a little over three minutes into the game. Florida State would never regain the lead.  FSU sophomore guard Aaron Thomas said, “[Allen] didn’t play well the first game we played and in this one he got going early.  I don’t think we did a good job containing him.” The Terps went up by seven (30-23) in a short run with under six minutes to play before Seth Allen (who scored 21 of his 32 total points in the first half) was fouled on a 3-point attempt and made all three shots from the line.  Jake Layman made a hit from behind the arc with 57 seconds on the clock to send Maryland into the locker room with a 46-29 lead over FSU. “We finished the first half well, and built that lead and maintained in in the second half,” said the Terrapins’ head coach Mark Turgeon.

Photos courtesy of Maryland Athletics
Maryland’s Seth Allen attacks the rim for a layup, with Florida State’s Michael Ojo defends the basket. (photo courtesy of Maryland Athletics)

In the second half, the Terrapins went up by 20 with just over 11 minutes to play. The Terps gave up some points in the end and allowed FSU to cut their lead to just eight.  Dez Wells contributed 13 of his total 15 points in the second half, and everyone, with the exception of Nick Faust (who scored six in the first half); also put points on the board during the half.  Something about this kid with 57 seconds on the clock: Jake Layman hustles for a loose ball to gain a key possession for the Terps.  Smotrycz hit one of two at the line off a foul by Okaro White, and Dez Wells went two for two at the line off a foul by Aaron Thomas. “My teammates got me open in transition and I was just making three pointers. It felt good; the win felt even better. They beat us bad [in the last game] so we came into tonight with a chip on our shoulders,” Seth Allen said of his and his team’s performance.

Of the Terrapins’ performance, Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton said, “they reversed the ball several different times, almost each possession, and broke our defense down. They did a good job of executing.”

Finishing with a career-high 32 points, Seth Allen led the Terps, followed by Dez Wells with 15 points and Jake Layman with 12.  For the Seminoles, Aaron Thomas led with 17 points, followed by Devon Bookert with 14, Okaro White with 12, and Montay Brandon with 11.

“Seth Allen was on another level tonight. He’s making shots and he guards better too,” Coach Turgeon said. “A really good win for us.  We played really well.  We shared the ball and took care of the ball until the very end. [Florida State] is a good team and athletic. I was really proud of our team.”

Seth Allen (Left) and teammate Jake Layman (Right) (photo courtesy of Maryland Athletics)

Maryland will hit the road next to play #20 Virginia on Monday, Feb. 10 at 7 p.m.  The game will air live on ESPN.  Following the game against Virginia, the Terps will travel to Cameron Indoor Stadium to face rival Duke on Saturday, Feb. 15 at 6 p.m. in their solo matchup this season; that game will also air on ESPN.  Maryland will return home Tuesday, Feb. 18 to face Wake Forest at 7 p.m.

Death to free internships: my personal experience with a reprehensible practice

As I mentioned in our February 2014 issue, I am republishing this article, written by former Editor-in-Chief, Isaiah L. Carter, online only, for the purposes of addressing some responses to it that were not properly recognized last year.

Death to free internships: my personal experience with a reprehensible practice

By Isaiah L. Carter, Editor-in-Chief

Until this past summer, I had a hard and fast rule: no unpaid internships. I had never taken an internship of any kind, having thought myself beyond them as a man at the start of my thirties. Perhaps as an older millennial with experience in the automotive industry, I had come to understand the value of every dollar for a day’s work, especially having worked for dealerships that were notorious for shorting sales consultants of commissions after demanding a 12-14 hour day from them.

I had not yet heard of Sarah Kendzior, the brilliant anthropologist and columnist with al Jazeera, who has done outstanding work in the field of researching the damage to the economy, as well as the brazen immorality of an employer daring to ask someone to give their time, their talents and self-worth for absolutely no compensation at all. A chance meeting with a well-known columnist and radio show host who was impressed with my approach to journalism led to an opportunity to intern with his show. After meeting with his producers, I set a date after the semester ended.

It turned out to be one of the most humiliating experiences of my life. We were barely regarded as people. What was supposed to be a meaningful learning experience ended up being a time of weird degradation, as if the producers, host and program director knew that these college students in search of a solid first step in building their careers were to be treated like serfs. All talking in the producers’ office was forbidden, even to inform them of the findings of our given research projects. Instead, we were required to write an email, even as they sat less than five feet from where we were.

Within two weeks, after which time the producers must have thought my skills to be enough to garner some trust, I was asked to guest produce an hour of the show, in a sort of half-hearted attempt at developing my skills. Without any training or skills development, I was thrown a copy of the guest’s book to prepare for the show cold. Had I not stood my ground and demanded a template or example of how the work was expected to be done, all I would have received was a look of exasperated condescension, of which my producer was known to give plenty.

This was supposed to be a space to develop valuable skills, to become proficient in the field I was volunteering my time toward. I tried to see the value of working for free in the same light that many who defend the practice of free internships do: as a dues-paying measure; a way for prospective employers to see hunger and passion; a true test of a person’s work ethic. Ultimately, I would lose this internship, having lost nothing, but even worse, not gaining anything except a parking ticket.

Well, that’s not entirely true. I have a deeper understanding of just how dangerous free internships actually are. First of all, they are illegal. As of the June decision in Glatt v. Fox Searchlight Pictures, any internship that requires work that results in “…providing an immediate advantage to their employer and performing low-level tasks not requiring specialized training” is absolutely due more compensation than mere college credit or valuable experience. Most unpaid internships would collapse if work that fit that definition were eliminated.

Which brings me to my second point, the myth of “valuable” experience. If, as a young, impressionable, ambitious worker looking to get a foot in the door of your chosen profession, you decide to take on an unpaid internship, you instantly negate the value of any experience you hope to get. The aforementioned Sarah Kendzior said in a June interview, “This is a crisis of managed expectations. We have had a fundamental shift in what is “normal” corporate behavior and “normal” personal sacrifice. Because this shift is cloaked in terms like “meritocracy,” and espouses values like hard work and education, people have been reluctant to recognize it for what it is: the annihilation of mobility.”

So know your value, and demand more. Or, in this case, demand what is truly owed to you: compensation for your work.


Smarter water could be available, free, at the nearest fountain

UBGreen and the Helen P. Denit Honors Program screen Tapped on campus; a lively discussion of intelligent water choices ensues

By Laura Melamed

If someone stole your smart phone, would you buy it back? What if the thief put a pretty label on it? How about if your phone was disguised so well, you couldn’t recognize it?

I’m not sure if smart phone thievery has reached that level of deviousness.

Bottled water companies, however, have sunk that low, according to Tapped, a documentary film from 2009 screened by UBGreen and the Helen P. Denit Honors Program on Thursday, Nov. 7 and attended by eleven UB students.

While watching the film, I was shocked to hear that Poland Spring and Dasani are taking water from communities without properly compensating them and then reselling the water bottled –  within the same communities as well as elsewhere in the region. That Nestle and Coca Cola own bottled water companies was also a startling and unsettling discovery.

The documentary also explained that, contrary to what most people believe, tap water in the United States is more closely inspected and controlled for quality than bottled water.

Spokespeople for bottled water companies admitted, on film, that the studies they used to determine the safety of their bottled water were run only by the companies themselves, with no outside inspection.

The FDA is unable to inspect most bottled water because the agency’s jurisdiction covers only water sold out of state, and most bottled water is sold within the state it’s taken from.

Repeated flashing images of parents and their children drinking bottled water drives home the idea that many people are unaware of this.

Sometimes people can forget other problems that bottled water poses. The opportunity to sit and watch Tapped’s stunning photography of tranquil and pristine-looking mountain lakes, in jarring contrast with images of teeming masses of plastic water bottles clogging once- beautiful bodies of water provides a painful reminder of just how bad the problem is.

These are only a few of the bottled water related problems that Tapped brings to light.

Serious health risks from bottle production as well as leaching from hard plastic bottles containing BPA are discussed as well.

Fish are shown with plastic in their bellies and beaches are littered with multitudes of hard, broken plastic pieces, quickly turning the shore into what the documentary calls “the beach of the future.”

Recycling is apparently not ubiquitous. There is certainly no recycling pick-up at my apartment complex, nor is it a universal cultural norm. Obviously, my community is not alone in this dilemma.

One solution, say citizens interviewed in Tapped, is to stop buying bottled water.

No one at UB’s Tapped screening seemed to be unaffected by the film. In a discussion led by UB Sustainability Coordinator Jeff La Noue, students shared how they were impacted by the documentary. Several students expressed anger at being misled by bottled water advertising and being tricked into paying top dollar for public tap water.

There was a lively chat about ways to combat the problem and the best kind of reusable water bottles to buy or gift. Most students said glass was the best option.

Stainless steel, health department recommended as safest for cooking, may be a user-friendly but lighter weight option.

In any event, no Poland Spring, Dasani or any bottled water was offered at the screening.

water fountain1
New water fountain designed specifically for reusable water bottles at UB.

UB is filled with water fountains, including several new ones, specifically designed for easy use with reusable water containers – a smart choice perhaps worth tapping into.

Gage on new UB water fountain tracks how many water bottles are filled
Gage on new UB water fountain tracks how many water bottles are filled

Tapped is available for checkout, free at Langsdale Library.

Lady Terps dominate Holy Family in 99-44 victory in final exhibition game

On Saturday, Nov. 2 at 2 p.m., #6-ranked Maryland Terrapins Women’s Basketball hosted the Holy Family Tigers in their last exhibition game.  The Terps brought home a 99-44 victory over the Tigers at Comcast Center.

Starting for the Terps were seniors Alyssa Thomas, Katie Rutan, Alicia DeVaughn and sophomores Malina Howard and Chloe Pavlech.  Starting for the Tigers were Jill Conroy, Maggie Serratelli, Mary Ellen McCollum, Sarah Pawlak, and Carolyne Heston. Alyssa Thomas led the Terps with 20 points, going 2-2 behind the line, with 11 rebounds and a team high of five assists.  Freshman Shatori Walker-Kimbrough added 14 points, while fellow freshman Lexie Brown had 10.  The Terps remained consistent between the two halves, making an average of 51.2% of their field goal attempts, but improved to 66.7% percent behind the line of free throws.  Alyssa Thomas was recently voted ACC Player of the Year, while Lexie Brown was named to the Blue Ribbon Panel’s ACC Newcomer Watch List.

Just 12 seconds into regulation play, Alyssa Thomas made a two-point jumper with an assist by Chloe Pavlech followed by a layup by Alicia DeVaughn, who was fouled by Mary Ellen McCollum on the play.  The field goal counted and DeVaughn went to the line to shoot one, turning the play into a total of three points, giving the Terps a 5-0 lead just 39 seconds into the game.

The Tigers managed to keep the Terrapins’ lead under control through most of the first half.  With a little over six minutes to go, freshman Briona Jones sank a layup, which catapulted the Terrapins into an 18-5 run to finish the half[A1] .  The halftime score was 45-23.  Coming back from halftime, Maryland continued their pace with a layup by Lexie Brown and pushed their lead to 66-33 with just under 11 minutes remaining.

This year the Lady Terps really have the depth to reach far into their bench and make plays that really work for them[A2] .  During the post-game press conference, Coach Brenda Freese said, “I saw a lot of great things with some different combinations and how we wanted to play.  I thought we were able to really do some great things on the glass in terms of how we went to the offensive boards.  This was just an opportunity to blend a lot of combinations together and I thought we did a good job overall.”

South Florida’s 2012-2013 record had them going 22-11, making it to the NCAA Tournament, only to fall to California in the 2nd Round during overtime.

The Terps will travel to Tampa on Friday, Nov. 8th to take on the University of South Florida Bulls; game time is 7 p.m.  For game updates, follow the Lady Terps on Twitter @UMDWBB or get live stat updates at  You can also view the game, streamed live for a fee, at

The Terrapins will be back at home on Sunday, Nov. 10 at 2 p.m. for their home opener against Loyola.  Tickets are available at or by calling 1-800-IM-A-TERP.


I’m soooo glad you’re reading my articles AND logging on to see my follow ups!! Thanks so much for coming to see me “In Bed With Chrissy Teigen.”  Not that you won’t be able to figure this out, but I’m at the bottom in the center.

I hope you enjoy my experience as much as I did!

Feel free to comment and ask any questions you want.