Archive for April, 2011

Hines And Kym Are All 9’s
April 19, 2011

It has been 10 days since I took this photo of Hines and Kym–at their practice in Pittsburgh–exhausted during their whirlwind tour of the city and several charity functions. 

They were practicing for the paso doble, which he and Kym nailed last Monday, in my humble and uneducated opinion.

The studio audience made it’s displeasure known when they only got one nine, but the judges made up for it this week with the “patriotic” rumba. THREE –Count them–THREE 9’s!!!!Now they are firmly ensconced atop the leader board. I also have learned that the show’s producers are quite impressed with the Steeler Nation fan base voting for Hines, so keep it up, Black and Gold!

And speaking of Black and Gold, this was Coach Tomlin, his wife, Kiya, meeting Kym Johnson at the Mel Blount Youth Home Roast of Jerome Bettis. The VIP reception was a madhouse as people scrambled to get photos of the Dancing Stars. Hines’s manager, Andy Ree, was astounded by the reaction,

and the ABC publicist assigned  to Hines, who just happend to be a crazy Hines Ward fan, was blown away and standing there wide-eyed.  This is she, Sylvia Do,  sitting with Hines and Kym as they prepare for practice when they were in the Burgh!

And going back to Kiya Tomlin–did you spot her in the front VIP section with Greta Rooney, wife of Steeler President Art Rooney? Waving their Terrible Towels before the judges went all 9 on them! 

And can you imagine the delight of this woman, Karen Lewis, of Butler, Butler County, who won Hines raffle on his Facebook Page that benefited his Helping Hand Foundation? She and her husband John, were on vacation in the Napa Valley, when she got word she won the two tickets, and a stay at the Beverly Hills Wilshire Hotel, to see both Monday, and Tuesday night. I talked to her before the show, and she was so excited. She and her husband, who is president of Armstrong Memorial Hospital, got to talk to Hines in his trailer before the competition, and she texted me right after the show, saying, “It was absolutely incredible!!So much fun and lifelong memories.”

And you can bet Hines is remembering this performance. He was nervous about one move, but Kym put him through his paces, and he was so subtle, that he was spectacular! And the uniform—what a fabulous choice by Kym!

But the best part–Hines’ raffle netted 25 thousand dollars for his Helping Hands Foundation, which is why Karen donated and got the raffle tickets in the first place. A foundation that helps ensure the future success of biracial kids in Korea and children in this country.

Vote Hines!!!!

The Perfect Team-Hines & Kym
April 4, 2011

It has been an obscenely long time since my last blog–two and a half months. And, coincidentally, the last one was about Hines and his evolving role on the team. The Steelers team. Now he has a new team, Hines and Kym and the whole nation is sitting up and taking notice. By the way, it was his idea to show off the Altoids in this photo, taken March 7, when Hines invited me to his house in Atlanta-not far from where they were practicing before heading back to LA.  He says you have to have fresh breath when you dance so closely to one another.

First, the house is stunning, and I can understand why Architectural Digest featured Hines on its cover last fall. Hines designed it, and oversaw every last detail. A mixture of clean lines, and lodge-like warmth, I kept gasping during the tour he gave me.  And speaking of stunning, Kym Johnson, his partner and coach, is that and more. She has competed in ballroom dancing since she was a child, and was a champion in her native Australia, before becoming a winner here in the States on DWTS. She wants to win just as badly as Hines, and he could not have been matched with a better person on the show!!!!!

And before we started the interview, Hines showed Kym a special book with all his photos from his many trips to his native Korea. It was a special moment we were privileged to witness. He told her about his work with bi-racial children like himself, and showed her the picture of his mother with Korea’s President, and in front of special monuments.

It was a tiny window into the process of building their chemistry that is so wonderfully apparent on the dance floor on television. I knew Hines has a super-bright mind, and a memory like a steel trap. But I am blown away with how dramatic the two of them are together. He is not just technically great, he is emotionally invested in the dances.

Just like he has been emotionally invested in our community. Sunday night, I attended the Project Bundle-up Auction Kick-Off Dinner at LeMont.

On hand were the W. PA Commander, Major Robert Reel and his wife, Major Lynette Reel, of the Salvation Army. Lynette told the crowd the most touching story about one of Hines’ shopping trips with two children who were in need of warm, winter outerwear. The entire room was in tears as she told of Hines’ heart and compassion, and his desire to go the extra mile for the kids.

You can see that kind of heart on the dance floor–so Steeler Nation–KEEP ON VOTING FOR HINES AND KYM!!!