Wednesday, December 24, 2003        Edition: #2694
‘Twas The Sheet Before Christmas … The Last Sheet You’re Gonna Take This Year!

TONIGHT the Christmas edition of “The Osbournes” airs on MTV (recorded before Ozzy’s accident), featuring Britney Spears, Mike Myers, 20 tons of fake snow, and an unlikely duet on “Winter Wonderland” by Oz & Jessica Simpson . . . FOX-TV airs “World Idol” Christmas Day at 8 pm ET, featuring the first season winners of “Idol” competitions in 11 countries (the finale airs New Year’s Day at  9 pm ET) . . . FOX-TV’s “America’s Party” on New Year’s Eve will include Ashanti, Metallica, Puddle of Mud, Keith Urban, and the oh-so-talented Paris Hilton & Nicole Richie . . . 22-year-old Nicole Richie is scheduled to fly to NYC FRIDAY to audition for the Broadway show “Rent”, and she’s also in talks to star in a “Simple Life” sequel . . . ‘Tis the season to upgrade your image – 23-year-old Christina Aguilera has donated $200,000 to the Women’s Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh . . . 43-year-old Hugh Grant, in Thailand filming the sequel to “Bridget Jones’s Diary”, was forced to flee a Bangkok bar with his hands over his crotch after rampaging hookers tried to grab his schlong – apparently the custom among local working women (there must have been 3 of them because Hugh cried out, “Ho ho ho!”) . . .  And it seems that some Iraqi captives are complaining that US troops are ‘torturing’ them by raising the volume of rap music until it becomes unbearable (this is exactly why I reported my teenager to Amnesty International!).

• “Cold Mountain” (Civil War Drama): Jude Law plays a wounded Confederate soldier who deserts the army and makes the dangerous journey back to his mountain home, where his sweetheart (Nicole Kidman) is struggling to survive on her father’s farm with the help of a young drifter (Renee Zellweger). It’s already racked up 8 “Golden Globe” nominations.
• “Peter Pan” (Family Adventure): A live-action update of James M Barrie’s beloved kids’ book about the ‘Darling’ family children who receive a visit from ‘Peter Pan’, who takes them to ‘Never Never Land’. (Don’t worry parents, Michael Jackson’s not there.)
• “Paycheck”(Sci-Fi Thriller): Ben Affleck plays a hi-tech genius who has his memory erased by his employer as a security precaution once he’s completed a 3-year special project. Uma Thurman plays the co-worker who helps him make sense out of 19 personal items that he mailed to himself before his memory was bulk erased.
• “Cheaper By The Dozen” (Family Comedy): Steve Martin, Bonnie Hunt & Hillary Duff star in this remake of the 1950 comedy classic about a couple trying to raise 12 kids … with some wacky results.

• Belgian researchers have created the unusual phenomenon of ‘anti-bubbles’, the rare, reverse form of normal bubbles, by forming them in beer. Regular bubbles are thin films of liquid enclosing pockets of air, while anti-bubbles are thin films of air which enclose pockets of liquid. (That’s nothing new … [co-host] has been making those in the bathtub for years.)
• Scientists at Texas A&M University have produced what they believe is the first cloned deer, a fawn named ‘Dewey’. (Because, lord knows, we really need more deer.)
• A team of scientists from Purdue and Harvard universities has isolated the gene in lice that controls the conversion of human blood into energy. Now if they can just alter that gene, they may be able to rid us of the pesky little critters forever. (Some might say that’s tampering with nature, but they’d just be nitpicking.)
• University of London researchers have found that getting married may be good for women’s health but bad for men’s. It seems that men who get hitched are more likely to suffer mental health problems than those who simply live with their partners. The opposite is true for women –  but they do best without any relationship at all. And single men? They’re most likely to suffer from depression. (Wow, marriage drives you nuts – what a discovery!)

Swiss-based underwear maker Triumph International has developed a hi-tech bra which it claims will help women quit smoking. It’s embedded with lavender-scented capsules which have sedative properties, as well as normally sweet-smelling jasmine that alters the taste of cigarettes. The company says the bra is also treated with liquid titanium to break down cigarette smoke. (The bad news is, it weighs 600 lbs.)

The 3rd generation of the 4-year-old ‘Aibo’ robotic dog from Sony Electronics is more responsive to voice and touch commands and features improved infrared sensors, enabling it to better avoid obstacles and edges. The new  ‘Aibo ERS-7′ also features a faster CPU, a higher-resolution camera and twice as much memory as its predecessors. It can now understand nearly 180 voice commands and automatically finds its energy station to recharge itself when the battery runs low. Bottom line – $1,599.

Argentine police are reportedly hunting for former soccer superstar Diego Maradona’s missing penis … actually a fake plastic penis which was used by Maradona to beat drug tests when he was a player in Italy. It was routinely filled with ‘clean’ urine so that he could pass himself off as drug-free. Alas, it seems the fake penis, the size of which is unknown, has now gone missing after it was taken on a countrywide tour.

5,000 FAT GUYS:
LAST NIGHT the NHL’s NY Islanders offered anyone dressed up as Santa free admission to their game vs the Philadelphia Flyers. Participants were also allowed to parade across center ice during intermission.

Russia’s Rosaviakosmos space agency, in cooperation with American company Space Adventures, is now offering an out-of-this-world honeymoon experience – 10 days on the International Space Station. And there likely won’t be long line-ups. The price is a cool $40 million. (Hmm, can you picture a zero-gravity honeymoon?)

Organizers of a Christmas party in Mosgiel, New Zealand banned children from sitting on Santa’s knee because they feared being held responsible if anything ‘untoward’ happened. Instead, the children had to sit next to him, on specially decorated ‘elf chairs’, as they discussed their Christmas wish list. Graham Glass, who dressed up as Santa for the event, was clearly insulted. “It’s bloody ridiculous,” he says “I can’t believe we have become so politically correct.” (Amen, you said it, bro’.)

The first ‘RRSPs’ were introduced in Canada way back in 1957. (Just think, if you’d put $10,000 into a plan back then … you’d be really old now.)
Retail stats show that 7.5 cents of every dollar spent in any store in the USA (other than auto-parts stores) goes to Wal-Mart.


1971 [32] Ricky Martin, San Juan PR, pop singer (“La Vida Loca”)

1946 [57] Jimmy Buffet, Pascagoula MS, pop singer (w/Alan Jackson-“It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere”, “Margaritaville”)/hero to ‘Parrot Heads’

1949 [54] Sissy Spacek, Quitman TX, movie actress (“In the Bedroom”, Oscar-“Coal Miner’s Daughter”)

1954 [49] Annie Lennox, Aberdeen SCOT, pop singer (“Wonderful”, “No More I Love Yous”, The Eurythmics-“Here Comes the Rain Again”)

1954 [49] Steve Wariner, Noblesville IN, country singer/songwriter (“The Weekend”, “Tips Of My Fingers”)

1971 [32] Dido (Florian Cloud De Bounevialle Armstrong), London UK, pop singer (“White Flag”, “Thank You”)  FACTOID: She was nicknamed ‘Dido’ after an African warrior queen.

1971 [32] Justin Trudeau, Ottawa ON, #1 son of PM Pierre Trudeau & Margaret Trudeau

1973 [30] Alexander (‘Sasha’) Trudeau, Ottawa ON, #2 son of PM Pierre Trudeau & Margaret Trudeau

TODAY is “Christmas Eve”, a family gift-giving occasion in many countries.

TODAY is “National Egg Nog Day”, to which we say YEEEEE-HAWWWWW!!!!

TOMORROW is reputedly the 148th anniversary of the “First Game of Hockey”. Legend has it that teams from the Royal Canadian Rifles played at Kingston ON on Christmas Day, 1855 using field hockey sticks and a rubber lacrosse ball.

FRIDAY through January 1st is “Kwanzaa”, the African-American version of traditional African harvest festivals, celebrated in North America since 1966. ‘Kwanzaa’ means ‘first fruit’ in Swahili.

FRIDAY in Luxembourg is the annual “Blessing of the Wine”, when winemakers parade to church with a barrel of their best to be blessed. (Then crack ‘er open.)

FRIDAY in Ireland is “Day of the Wren”, when masked revellers go door-to-door asking for money. (Irish version of Jehovah’s Witnesses?)

FRIDAY is “National Whiner’s Day”, dedicated to people who whine about unwanted Christmas gifts.

FRIDAY is also “God-Awful Tie Day”, as declared by the National FRUMPs of America. The frugal FRUMPs believe men should wear their Christmas ties for the day, no matter how ugly.

1990 [13] Tom Cruise weds Nicole Kidman, his co-star from “Days of Thunder” (lasts 11 years)

1818 [185] Melody to “Silent Night, Holy Night” composed by Franz Gruber as a favor to his friend Joseph Franz Mohr who had written the lyrics as a poem

1906 [97] 1st ‘music broadcast’ on radio (Canadian physicist Reginald Fessenden-Brant Rock MA)

[Thurs] Christmas Day
[Thurs] A’ Phabet Day (No ‘L’)
[Fri] Boxing Day (Canada, UK, some Caribbean countries)
[Fri] St Stephen’s Day (the day “Good King Wenceslas looked out …”)
[Fri] Recyclable Packaging Day
[Sat] National Fruitcake Day
[Sun] Card Playing Day

Safe Toys & Gifts Month
Universal Human Rights Month


• Letter to North Pole comes back stamped, “Dream on, pipsqueak!”
• Kid asks for new bike, gets pack of smokes.
• Giant carton under the tree contains Styrofoam peanuts only.
• Kid wakes up Christmas Day with a reindeer head in his bed.
• Instead of ‘naughty’ or ‘nice’, Santa has him on the ‘dork list’.
• Labels on all your kid’s toys read ‘Straight from Craptown’.
• Santa’s first words when your kid meets him in the mall – “Off my lap, Tubby!”

• “Two-Headed Alien Baby Raised by Reindeer!”
• “Dr Phil Reveals His All Shortbread Diet!”
• “Rudolph Checks Into Rehab, Admits I Wasn’t Born With Red Nose!”
• “Santa Speaks Out: I’ve Been Giving For Years … Now It’s Payback Time!”
• “Elvis Is Alive & Playing Santa in Tennessee Mall … Without Padding!”
• “Gwyneth To Give Birth To Santa’s Love Child!”
• “Halle Berry Tired of Being Nailed to Door”
• “Angel Sues Christmas Tree For Abuse”

What’s missing at your house during the holidays? Obviously, there’s just not enough mayhem. So the sadistic jokers at Pets Supplies Plus have thrown down a Web page on how to ‘Teach Your Dog To Sing Holiday Carols This Year’. Get step-by-step instructions right here …

Today’s Question: 90% of office workers agree that THIS is the most important tool around the office.
Answer to Give Out Next Show: The Post-It Note.

In just two days, tomorrow will be yesterday.

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