Here’s a bit of heartwarming news to start your Monday: HBO announced Monday that comedian Quincy Jones will headline a stand-up special to air this spring on the premium cable network.
What’s the big deal? In July, the 32-year-old Jones (not to be confused with the legendary music producer of the same name), an aspiring stand-up comedian, was diagnosed with Stage 4 mesothelioma cancer and given a year to live. He is undergoing chemotherapy and performing when he is well enough.
His friends Nicole and Mickey Blaine recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise money to help Jones realize his dream of starring in a stand-up special. The campaign quickly reached its $50,000 target and also generated a flurry of publicity for Jones, who made a charming appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” last week. To see it, click here.
The special will be taped in Los Angeles in April and will air on HBO this spring.
There’s a public school in Detroit that is falling apart, literally, and Ellen DeGeneres just threw a bunch of money and attention at the problem, the Detroit Free Press reports.
According to a clip from the show, the Spain Elementary-Middle School is chock-full of students from working-class families that are “poor or homeless,” DeGeneres explained.
The technology at the school doesn’t work or is nonexistent, “their entire roof is falling apart [and] their gym is completely shut down,” forcing students to take their physical education class in the hallways.
At times, students wear coats in the classroom because the heat doesn’t work. DeGeneres donated and pooled together tons of resources for the school, which she says is her show’s “most generous giveaway.”
Those giveaways include a $100 gift card from Lowe’s for each teacher and staff member at the school, $50,000 in technology from Lowe’s, $200,000 worth of materials and labor to go toward a new roof, and a $250,000 donation from Lowe’s. Plus, the show started a GoFundMe page for the school with a $5 million goal (the GoFundMe team has already pledged $15,000 toward that goal).
DeGeneres surprised the school’s students during a live telecast of her show, in which she video-conferenced into their assembly. Check out the surprise by clicking here.
Cory Nieves wants to become a household name because of his decadent cookies. CBS News reports that every Saturday, Nieves can be found along with his wagon cart of treats, selling homemade cookies to clients at various city locations. In an interview, Nieves told a CBS reporter the reason why his cookies are so good is because they are “made with love”… and without preservatives. Nieves founded his company, Mr. Cory’s Cookies at the age of five. Currently, he is the founder, CEO and head of distribution for his company. He created Mr. Cory’s when he and his mother moved from the Bronx to Englewood, New Jersey; his mother recalls the conversation that birthed his business:
“One day, we were on the bus and he just came out and was like, ‘Ma, you know, I wanna get a car or whatever. Cause it’s too cold.’ I said, ‘Cory, how am I gettin’ a car, off of my looks?’ I told him that and then, he said, ‘Well, we can sell hot cocoa. And then, he wanted to add something to that, like, something, a dessert base. And he wanted to try the cookies.”
Although Nieves did not know much about baking, he set forth to research the craft before making into an enterprise. He shared: “I didn’t really know. I just looked it up with some magazines, websites. Looked it up. Little search. ‘What is this? How you make that?’ And I didn’t like the recipes, so I just started changin’ it around.” From a humble beginning in his home kitchen, Nieves has now moved into a commercial space to bake his desserts. He sells a thousand cookies a weekend at about $1 a piece.
Besides becoming a culinary mogul, Nieves would like to own a fashion line. With over 30,000 followers on Instagram and press appearances, his most recent on The Ellen Degeneres Show we are sure Nieves will be a name we won’t forget.