Friday, August 22, 2008        Edition: #3842
Avoid Sheet Fits – Don’t Forget to Renew Your Subscription!

Screenwriter Adam Stone has sought a court order to stop TODAY’s release of the movie “Death Race”, claiming it’s a rip-off of a script he wrote for another film, “Joust”, due in 2010 (don’t worry, dude, by then we’ll have forgotten all about this one) . . . 39-year-old former “Austin Powers” actor Verne Troyer (‘Mini Me’) has begun shooting a reality TV show ‘about being a dwarf in Hollywood’, which he’s hoping to peddle to a TV network (hopefully, it won’t include any bedroom hijinks like his last ‘production’) . . . Actor Matt Damon & wife Luciana Barroso have a new baby girl, their 2nd child together whom they’ve named ‘Gia Zavala’ (thereby moving up on the list of cruel Hollywood parents) . . . Former acting couple Rachel McAdams & Ryan Gosling are reportedly back together, recently spotted looking cozy numerous times in Toronto (rumor has it they only broke up because she felt pressured for their relationship to be as perfect as it was in “The Notebook”) . . . And 20-year-old actress-singer Hilary Duff has been spotted wearing a gold-and-diamond band on her left ring finger, perhaps meaning things are getting serious with 27-year-old hockey-player BF Mike Comrie of the NY Islanders? (2 minutes for high-sticking!).

• “Beijing Olympics Closing Ceremony” (NBC/CBC) – SUNDAY’s hush-hush grand finalé will reportedly include the odd pairing of Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page with Brit singer Leona Lewis (“Bleeding Love”) on the Zep classic “Whole Lotta Love”.
• “Ellen DeGeneres Show” (syndicated/CityTV) – THIS AFTERNOON “American Idol 2” contestant Kimberley Locke (“Fall”) performs.
• “The Final Two” – SUNDAY & Monday George Michael performs at Earl’s Court in London. The title of the 2 gigs is a reference to his last ever Wham! show in 1986 which was dubbed “The Final”, after which the band split. So does this mean he’s retiring? No one’s saying.
• “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (ABC/CityTV) – TONIGHT rock band Rev Theory (“Hell Yeah”) is onstage.
• “Late Show With David Letterman” (CBS) – TONIGHT folk singer Martha Wainwright (“I Know You’re Married But I’ve Got Feelings Too“) is on.
• “Live With Regis & Kelly” (syndicated/CTV) – THIS MORNING “Love Song” singer Sara Bareilles performs.
• “Outside Lands Music & Arts Festival” – TONIGHT-Sunday this inaugural event at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco CA features over 60 acts, headlined by Radiohead, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, and Jack Johnson. Also in the lineup: Beck, Widespread Panic, and Wilco.

• Brad Paisley – With TONIGHT’s show in St Paul MN he’ll surpass the 500,000 concert ticket mark for 2008. The country star will also tour in early 2009, with details to be announced soon.
• Britney Spears – She says she’s sticking to a grueling 1,200 calorie-per-day diet in a bid to get back in shape. The regimen includes avocados, chicken, salmon, rice, and egg whites but no sugar.
• Jonas Brothers – Their chart-topping “A Little Bit Longer” has become the year’s 3rd-biggest debut album. Their “Camp Rock” soundtrack album is also top 10, ranked at #8.
• Lily Allen – The Brit popster (“Smile”) says she has no plans to stop using ‘illegal substances’, despite making headlines THIS WEEK by punching an innocent bystander upside the head during a wild night out in London. (You won’t sound like Amy Winehouse just because you act like her, girl.)
• Ricky Martin – The 36-year-old Latin pop star (“Livin’ La Vida Loca“) says he plans to take a long break from show biz to raise the twin boys he’s adopted, born to an unnamed surrogate mother. Martin intends to be a full-time single parent. (At least until he finds ‘Mr Right’.)
• Sheryl Crow – She’s announced a plan to give away digital copies of her latest album “Detours” to the first 50,000 people who register 3 friends to vote in the NOVEMBER election. The bonus is available through the ‘Rock the Vote’ website.

• “Death Race“ ( R-Rated Action Adventure ): Jason Statham (“Transporter”) plays a former NASCAR champ who’s framed for the murder of his wife and subsequently sent to a notorious prison overseen by a warden (‘Jason Bourne’ baddie Joan Allen) who has created the country’s most popular sport: a kill-or-be-killed car race in which inmates compete for their freedom. Tyrese Gibson (“2 Fast 2 Furious”) co-stars. Shot entirely in Montréal.
• “House Bunny” ( PG-13 Comedy ): Anna Faris stars as a Playboy bunny who’s booted from the Playboy mansion and winds up becoming the new house mother in a sorority house inhabited by the 7 most socially clueless women on the planet. “American Idol 5” runner-up Katharine McPhee and celebrity spawn Rumer Willis have small roles. From the writers of “Legally Blonde”.
• “The Longshots” ( PG Sports Dramedy ): Former rocker Fred Durst (Limp Bizket) directs this interpretation of the true story of Jasmine Plummer who, at the age of 11, became the first female to play in Pop Warner football tournament in its 56-year history. 14-year-old star Keke Palmer (“Akkelah & The Bee“) trained for 6 weeks learning not only how to throw a football correctly, but also how to call plays like a real QB. Ice Cube plays her coach.

British statistician Kenneth Mitchell has crunched numbers and discovered a strong correlation between Olympic medal winners and zodiac signs. He’s dubbed his theory, ‘The Pisces Effect’, after discovering that athletes born under the fish sign win 30% more medals in water-based events than those born under other signs (for the record, Michael Phelps is a Cancer). Mitchell has also found that Scorpions are the best fencers and Taurus is the best sign for pole vaulters. Overall, athletes born under the signs of Aquarius, Aries, and Capricorn win the most Gold medals. (Wouldn’t the best synchronized divers be Gemini … the twins?)
– Reuters

A new ranking of the top torsos among male celebs …
5. TV actor Shemar Moore (“Criminal Minds”).
4. Aussie actor Hugh Jackman (“The Prestige”).
3. TV personality Mario Lopez (“Extra!”, “Dancing With the Stars“).
2. TV actor Robert Buckley (“Lipstick Jungle“).
1. LA Galaxy soccer star & sometime underwear model David Beckham.
(What, no Matthew McConaughey?)
– “In Touch Magazine”

A trio of American psychologists who examined video footage of the reactions of Olympic athletes after winning medals has discovered an interesting phenomenon: Bronze medalists seem significantly happier than Silver medalists. After more than 100 medalists at an amateur competition were later interviewed, the premise seemed to hold up … Bronze medalists are more content because they compare themselves with athletes who didn’t win anything. But Silver medalists can’t seem to get the almost-won Gold out of their heads.
– “Washington Post“

• In Puerto Rico, a man who died at the age of 24 has had his last wishes honored … to be standing upright at his own funeral. A local mortuary used a special embalming treatment to keep the corpse of Angel Medina upright, dressed in a Yankees baseball cap and sunglasses … for his entire 3-day wake. He’s not walking, but he’s a ‘Dead Man Standing’.
• In England, the Barley Mow pub in Derbyshire has staged an annual competition for the past 17 years in … hen racing. Birds are required to run a 30-ft (9-m) track within 3 minutes to win. That often doesn’t happen so the nearest hen wins. Here’s the truly weird part: No cheering or other noise is allowed, so as not to cause the racers to … er, chicken out.
• In Finland, new hi-tech garbage cans are being tested that feature … celebrity voices saying ‘thank you’. So far, the capital city of Helsinki has 4 public trash containers equipped with motion detectors and voice recorders. The trial ‘celebrity’ is Helsinki mayor Jussi Pajunen whose message says: “It’s great that you care about the city. Cool.” The idea is to encourage people to stop scattering litter and pitch in. If successful, the idea may be exported across Europe.

NYC psychologist Stanley Milgram discovered years ago that the best way to get a seat when they’re all taken on mass transit is to simply ask someone to move. Amazingly, the technique worked 68% of the time in testing … and this was on the NYC subway! More recent research at Harvard University reveals the success rate of obtaining a seat can further be increased by using a single magic word. Nope, it’s not ‘please’ – it’s ‘because’. Experiments show it doesn’t matter what follows the word; any excuse will do. But requesting a person give you their seat ‘because’ of something virtually guarantees success. (“Excuse me, may I sit there because … otherwise I’m going to punch out your lights?”)
– “Focus Magazine”

Scientists at Brock University in St Catharines ON have discovered a link between aggression and men’s facial structure. A study of some 90 hockey players has found that, the rounder the face, the more aggressive the player. Why? The male hormone testosterone tends to make faces more circular. So researchers figure higher testosterone levels may be the link to more aggressive behavior. (Or maybe it’s teammates yelling, “Pass the puck, fat face!”?)

Scientists at the University of Twente in the Netherlands have developed innovative concrete paving stones that contain a titanium dioxide-based additive. In lab conditions, the additive binds particles emitted by car exhaust and turns them into harmless nitrates. With one rain shower everything should be washed clean, the researchers say. As a real-world trial, a road in the small Dutch town of Hengelo is being paved with the air-purifying concrete to see if the lab tests hold up. (Isn’t this treating the symptom instead of the cause?)
– Agence France-Presse

At the London Olympics In 1908, racquets – an obscure game that is the ancestor of squash – made its first and only appearance in the Games.
– “Guardian”

1945 [63] Steve Kroft, Kokomo IN, CBS News correspondent (“60 Minutes” since 1989)

1963 [45] Tori (Myra Ellen) Amos, Newton NC, alt-rock singer (“Big Wheel”, “100 Oceans”)

1972 [36] Paul Doucette, North Huntington PA, rock guitarist (Matchbox Twenty-“These Hard Times“, “Unwell”)

1973 [35] Howie Dorough (Dwaline), Orlando FL, pop singer (Backstreet Boys-“Just Want You to Know”, “I Want It That Way”)

1978 [30] Jeff (Jean Francois) Stinco, Montréal QC, rock guitarist (Simple Plan-“Untitled [How Could This Happen To Me?]”, “Perfect”)

Rock guitarist Dean DeLeo (Stone Temple Pilots) is 47; TV actor Jay Mohr (“Ghost Whisperer”) is 38; NBA basketball star Kobe Bryant (LA Lakers) is 30; Rock singer Julian Casablancas (The Strokes) is 30; US Olympic swimmer Natalie Coughlin (6 medals in Beijing) is 26.

WWE wrestling chairman Vince McMahon is 63; Country singer Kristyn Osborn (SHeDAISY) is 38; Movie actor-comedian Dave Chappelle (“Blue Streak”) is 35; TV actor Carmine Giovinazzo (“CSI: NY”) is 35; TV actor Chad Michael Murray (“One Tree Hill”) is 27; Movie actor Rupert Grint (“Harry Potter” films) is 20.

• “Be An Angel Day”, a day to do ‘one small act of service for someone’. So if you see someone walking around yakking on a cellphone today, give ’em a slap upside the head … as a public service, of course.
• “Great American Duck Race”, the 28th annual staging of the ‘world’s richest duck race’ through Sunday in Deming NM. No little rubber duckies here, these are real live quackers competing for prize money.
• “Tooth Fairy Day”, honoring the devious dental donor who leaves money under kids’ pillows for lost teeth. The average price now paid for one of these is $1.78, according to a recent poll by “Redbook” magazine.

• “Ironman Canada” in Penticton BC, including a 3.8K swim, 180K cycle, and 42.2K run. The good news for this year’s competitors – Simon Whitfield’s in Beijing.
• “Virgo” astrology sign begins (August 23 to September 23). Traditional traits of people born under this sign are: modest and shy, meticulous and reliable, practical and diligent, intelligent and analytical. On the dark side, they can also be fussy and a worrier, overcritical and harsh, perfectionist and conservative … not that’s there’s anything wrong with being a conservative.

• “Little League World Series Championship Game” (ABC), 3:30 pm ET in Williamsport PA.
 • “National Inventors’ Month”. Inventions attributed to TODAY’s date include ‘Potato Chips’ (Chef George Crum, Saratoga Springs NY in 1853), the ‘Waffle Iron’ (Cornelius Swartwout of Troy NY in 1869), and the ‘Motion Picture Camera’ (Thomas Edison in Menlo Park NJ, 1891)

565 [1443] 1st reported sighting of ‘Loch Ness Monster’ by Saint Columba (first president of the local tourist board)

1865 [143] 1st ‘Liquid Soap’ patented (we can thank William Sheppard for those public restroom dispensers that squirt goo down your sleeves)

1989 [19] British Telecom unveils world’s 1st ‘Pocket Phones’

1958 [50] Toronto Argos’ Boyd Carter & Dave Mann combine for CFL record 131-yd punt return (did they start in the parking lot or what?)

1998 [10] Westlock, Alberta farmers set a “Guinness World Record” by using 64 combines to harvest 63 hectares (156 acres) in just 15 minutes, 43 seconds

1989 [19] 1st MLB baseball pitcher to strike out 5,000 batters (Nolan Ryan, Texas Rangers)

2007 [01] Texas Rangers rout Baltimore Orioles 30-3, the ‘Most Runs Scored’ by a team in modern MLB baseball history

[Mon] Kiss & Make Up Day
[Tues] Make Your Own Luck Day
[Tues] Women’s Equality Day
[Tues] Single Parent Family Day
[Wed] Petroleum Day
[Wed-Sept 6] Venice Film Festival
This Week Is … Save Your Smile Week
This Month Is … Family Meal Month

When producing cars for non-English markets, Japanese manufacturers are often more concerned with the ‘mouth feel’ of model names and the pleasant sound a combination of words or letters makes, rather than the literal meaning. That’s why many of the weirdest auto names have originated in Japan. Here’s a sampling of some of the oddest ever …
• ‘Daihatsu Charade Social Poze’
• ‘Honda Life Dunk’
• ‘Isuzu GIGA 20 Light Dump’
• ‘Isuzu Mysterious Utility Wizard’
• ‘Mazda Bongo Friendee’
• ‘Mitsubishi Chariot Grandio Super Exceed’
• ‘Mitsubishi MUM 500 Shall We Join Us?’
• ‘Nissan Elgrand Homy’
• ‘Sbarro Assystem’
• ‘Yamaha Pantryboy Supreme’
– “Car & Driver Magazine”

If you were at a friend’s house for dinner and you found a dead cockroach in your salad, what would you do?

Please don’t take the speed limit literally.

Today’s Question: If THIS happens while you’re saying something, it’s a good indication that you’re lying.
Answer to Give Out Next Show: A sneeze.

An authority is someone who knows lots of things about something you don’t care about.

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