Sunday Nibble #83: Nothing to it (Part 2)

Part two pf the “guess what they have in common” article started last Sunday. Can you guess the answer?


Carried over from last week, each of the people listed last week and below have exactly one thing in common among all of them. Take a look at last week’s list and then this ones, and then see if you can guess the answer.

    1. Donna Karan (1948)

You may or may not recognize the name, but you’ll probably recognize her brand: DKNY, named for her initials and New York (City)’s. She started out as an assistant designer to designer Ann Klein, eventually launching her own brand in 1984, Donna Karan New York. This was followed by a less expensive line aimed at younger women, DKNY, in 1988, DKNY Jeans in 1990, and DKNY for men in 1992.

She left the company as CEO in 1997 and by 2002, her contributions as a designer lessened. Currently, she is focused on the lifestyle brand she established in 2007, Urban Zen.

    1. Persis Khambatta (1948—1998)

You most likely know her from 1979’s Star Trek: The Motion Picture, aka “The One That Fans Don’t Really Talk About,” the Robert Wise directed first effort to take Star Trek TOS into cinemas.

An Indian model and actress, she played Lieutenant Ilia in the film, although she had appeared in Bollywood films previously. Originally, the Star Trek project was supposed to be a five-year TV series, but then Paramount changed their mind to make it a theatrical film, probably largely due to the success of Star Wars.

She appeared in a few Hollywood films in the 1980s, coming close to getting the lead role in the James Bond film Octopussy, but losing out to Maud Adams — who was actually making her second appearance as a Bond “girl” at the age of 38.

She returned to India briefly to appear in the Hindi TV film Shingora, then returned to the U.S. to make various television appearances.

Regarding her bald-headed appearance in Star Trek, she did it to stand out from all the other women auditioning, who had long, glamorous 70s hair. She figured she was going to be playing an alien so might as well look like one, and a bald cap that cost $1.99 did the trick.

That’s $8 adjusted for inflation, but still a good investment.

Sadly, Persis died in 1998 at the age of 49 after a massive hart attack. She had already had coronary artery bypass surgery in 1983, in her 30s.

    1. Annie Leibovitz (1949—)

Smile for the camera! Or don’t. Annie probably wouldn’t like that if it came across as fake.

In a career that has spanned more than 50 years, Leibovitz started out as a staff photographer for Rolling Stone magazine, moving up to chief photographer in only three years and holding that job for a decade. Her work was vital in establishing the Rolling Stone “look.”

While with Rolling Stone she also covered the Stones, photographing them in San Francisco in 1971 and 1972, and serving as their concert tour photographer in 1975.

On December 8, 1980, she had a photo shoot with John Lennon and Yoko Ono, taking the famous photo of a nude Lennon curled up next to a clothed Yoko, and she guaranteed that they’d make the cover of Rolling Stone.

History guaranteed a promise kept, as Lennon was assassinated five hours after the shoot.

After a change in lighting style and use of bold colors, she moved on to work for Vanity Fair, and in 1998 moved to Vogue.

In 2015, she was commissioned to photograph the annual Pirelli calendar, long known for using cheesecake shots of objectified women in order to sell tires. Leibovitz turned that concept on its head by instead focusing on admirable woman, such as Amy Schumer, Serena Williams, and Patti Smith.

She was probably in a long relationship with author Susan Sontag, although never quite really confirmed or defined it.

    1. Gordon “Sting” Sumner (1951—)

He probably needs no introduction as the actor who played Feyd-Rautha Harkonnen in David Lynch’s 1984 film adaptation of Frank Herbert’s Dune.

Okay, kidding. You know him as that guy who was the lead singer for the band The Police before becoming a huge success as a solo artist, eventually including a Broadway musical, The Last Ship. As of 2021, he’s still got new albums coming out.

However, he’s been heavily involved in human rights activism for 40 years, beginning with his work with Amnesty International, also appearing with Band Aid and Live Aid, and later founded the Rainforest Foundation Fund, and also strongly opposed Brexit.

Not bad for a “mere” musician, eh?

    1. Kelly Ripa (1970—)

She almost feels like an example of “one of these things is not like the others,” but trust me, she does have the same thing in common with the other nine. She started out as a soap opera actor in All My Children, which, in the hierarchy of Hollywood acting is the bottom of the barrel.

Seriously, daytime television is looked down upon as the training ground for the “not talented enough for real TV,” no matter how famous the leads get. This may actually be more a reflection on the quality of the writing and production, though, considering that daytime has to (had to?) crank out at least five shows a week, fifty-two weeks out of the year.

Yeah, no wonder some of those plot twists got so damn ridiculous. I can only imagine the writers’ room at two in the morning before shooting the last episodes of the week.

“So how do we get ourselves out of this mess?”

“I don’t know. Maybe aliens kidnapped her as a baby and cloned her, then the original one grew up with bears, and now, as the clone is about to marry the widower of her sister — who was killed by the clone — the original comes back leading an army of bears to attack the chapel, kill the clone, and reclaim her identity. And then the aliens come back…”

“Brilliant! Let’s do it!”

Oops, wait. I forget Kelly, but that’s kind of the point. She’s kind of forgettable, because she went on from Soap Opera to the “doesn’t even count as acting” field of “talk show face,” which basically boils down to yapping about whatever the suits in corporate tell you that you have to pitch today and fake being excited about it all.

And yet, again, despite not having really done much besides yapping on a couch next to Regis Philbin and others, she does have something in common with everyone else on this list.

And that’s our ten. I reveal what they have in common in a moment, but first, why not enjoy this clip from the Marx Brothers while you’re thinking about it.

Okay, I hope you actually watched and enjoyed that video, so here’s the answer to what all of these people have in common.

They were all born on October 2, which is why I started this piece a day late a week ago, although I could toss in ten more people born on October 9 or 10, under the same astrological sign, and still… what else would they have in common? Not a damn thing.

And this is just another bit of evidence that astrology is bunk. Every single one of these people was born on the same day, under the same sign, and have nothing more than that in common.

Now, before you believers start prating on about, “Yes, but it really all depends upon which planets were in which houses right overhead at the second they were born in the place they were born, explain this to me, please.

What force, exactly, allows the planets to have such an influence on people, and in ways that are specific to personality? The only force that is strong enough to cross space and affect other objects — doing it at the speed of light — is gravity. However, your own mother and the doctor delivering you had far more gravitational influence on you in that moment than any of the planets or even the Sun itself.

The secret to how astrology “works” is simple. Its predictions and statements are general enough that people can easily cherry pick the parts that apply to them, use confirmation bias to confirm “hits,” and ignore shit that is either too vague or doesn’t come true.

You are an optimistic person but might find this week challenging. Beware a co-worker on Thursday, who might be trying to use you to excuse their failings, so CYA. Homelife will become more enjoyable during the weekend, but find a way for everyone to get outside and just binge. A friend will text you a rather surprising message.

There you go. My horoscope for all of you. Read it, then get back to me on how much of it applies and how much of it came true. Source: I just pulled it out of my ass, just like every other astrologer does.

Because, when it comes to astrology, there is literally nothing to it.

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