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Freelance entertainment writer, martial arts instructor, and mother of two.

X-Factor, Sept. 21 – The Trash Hauler


Mom and daughter, T for Two, ages 31 and 54, sing a Stevie Wonder medley, making me wish they didn’t tarnish the joy Marcus had brought earlier. They get noes from the judges. Darren Michaels, 40, a musician, admits his girl had been supporting him the last several years, and that she has invested $100,000 in him so far. He starts singing, making Simon feel like he’s living in a nightmare. Darren gets four noes as Simon mocks his laugh. The Sonnets, ranging in age of 18 through 22, all college students, sing without being in tune with each other. Simon remarks it’s the type of music he listens to as he gets a massage. The judges pass. As they leave, Nici calls Simon out. She still can’t believe it.

Chris Rene, 28, has a job hauling trash. He has a 2-1/2 year old boy and fells this might open doors for him. He wants to be on stage singing and making money. He admits to Nicole that he just got out of rehab. He couldn’t have asked for a better family, but started with weed when he was young, then moved onto beer and other drugs. The shame and guilt got to him and totally broke him. There’s aways a chance and a choice, and he wants to see his son making it. He’s been clean seventy days. He’s singing an original song called Young Homey. He’s much better than the song title implies. His song is all about his sobriety and isn’t total rap like you’d expect. The first three judges are into it, and Simon smirks.

Right there, that was why Chris got sober. Everything happens for a reason, and this is definitely his moment. Paula and L.A. high-five. Nicole makes mention of his lyrics, “LIttle Homey, whatcha tripping on,” telling him, “Honey, I’m tripping on you.” She can’t even describe his talent. X-Factor is indescribable , and that’s him. Paula calls him a bright light, and says he’s so talented words can’t articulate. L.A. has worked with some of the greatest hip hop artists from Jay-Z to Kanye, and his boys would be proud of him today to say that Chris is the truth. Simon tells Chris his favorite feeling in the world is to sit in that chair and meet a star for the first time, and there’s something about him. Maybe he needs the show, but maybe the show needs him. Wow, Simon.

Chris is obviously in, as L.A. tells him he has to stay straight, and when he calls he doesn’t want to talk to anyone else, but wants to talk to him to know he’s okay. Simon backs that up and says if they have a deal that he’s staying clean, he has his yes. Wow, do I want his guy to make it. I don’t mean as much on the show, as I do in life. He talks after about wanting his son to see it, and cries, saying it blew his mind. The first best day in his life was the birth of his son, the second when he got clean and sober, and third is this moment right here.

Seriously, there isn’t any other way I could wrap this evening up. There was some great talent tonight; several had the “X-Factor.” But the three best days in that guy’s life say it all. It’s what the show is about. He’s clean, and he has his priorities in tact. Family, his health, and his livelihood.

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