Monday, December 22, 2014        Edition: #5365


Good Morning, Sheetheads!

BS SUBSCRIBER NOTE:
“The Bull Sheet” will be shutting down for the holidays from December 25-January 4 inclusive. Subscribers will receive account credits for missed service days.

BS SHOW BIZ BUZZ:
★ Johnny Depp has sparked speculation he plans to wed on New Year’s Eve by inviting a number of close friends, including Steven Tyler, Marilyn Manson, Helena Bonham Carter and her partner Tim Burton, to ring in 2015 with him and fiancée Amber Heard on Amber Beach on his private island in the Caribbean. Johnny is normally very low key, so a big New Year’s party comes as a bit of a surprise. It could be a straightforward bash but some are wondering if it just might be a ruse in order to stage a wedding without a big fuss.
– TheSun.co.uk
★ Actress Emma Watson has been named ‘Feminist Of the Year’ in a new ranking compiled by ForWomen.org. The former ‘Harry Potter’ actress became a women’s rights heroine following a heartfelt sexual equality speech she made at the launch of the #HeForShe campaign at the UN in September. The actress rallied feminists worldwide with her stirring commentary on rights and equal pay. Also making the list: MSNBC commentator Rachel Maddow, transgender actress Laverne Cox (“Orange Is the New Black”), plus singers Beyoncé and Cher.
– Cosmopolitan.com
★ Brad Pitt has been excused from jury duty in Los Angeles because a judge considered the him to be too much of a distraction. The actor was reportedly ready and willing to perform his civic duty as a juror, but has been dismissed from the selection pool for an upcoming case. LA attorney William Lively says, “You just can’t stick Brad Pitt in a jury box and expect 11 jurors to ignore him. It’s only natural that those jurors would be watching to see how Brad reacts to what’s being said and that they could be influenced by his opinions once the jury goes behind closed doors to render a verdict.”
–  MailOnline.com
★ And music mogul/TV personality Simon Cowell is set to write a tell-all autobiography. Well, at least, somebody is. The “X Factor” boss has announced he is joining forces with a co-author to pen the book which will lift the lid on his life in the music and entertainment industry. Quote: “I would write it myself, but you have got to have someone (to help), because someone has to do the research.” That’s also known as the ‘heavy lifting’.
– “Daily Mirror”

TODAY’S SHOW BIZ SKED:
• “Conan” (TBS/CTV) – Ryan Adams (“Ryan Adams”).
• “The Great Christmas Light Fight” (ABC) – The holiday lights competition continues with a flame-shooting sleigh; and one family turns its entire home into a gingerbread house.
• “The iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2014″ (CW) – A rerun of this year’s concert at NYC’s Madison Square Garden includes performances by Iggy Azalea, Maroon 5, Sam Smith, and Taylor Swift.
• “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (ABC/CityTV) – Vintage Trouble (“The Bomb Shelter Sessions”). Rerun.
• “Late Show With David Letterman” (CBS/Omni1) – OK Go (“Hungry Ghosts”). Rerun.
• “Saturday Night Live” (NBC/Global) – A holiday special featuring a compilation of funniest seasonal sketches.
• “Tavis Smiley” (PBS) – Annie Lennox (“Nostalgia”).
• “Wendy Williams” (syndicated) – Mary J Blige (“The London Sessions”). Rerun.

BS MUSIC NOTES:
• Beyoncé & Jay-Z – They’ve reportedly lost a real estate bidding war. An extravagant Beverly Hills CA property they had interest in has sold for a record-breaking $70 million. And the winner? “Minecraft” creator Markus Persson. Among the mansion’s features: a vast living room with 54-foot sliding glass door opening onto the flashy outdoor pool.
• Bruce Springsteen – He’s made his acting debut in the 3rd season finalé of the Netflix mobster series “Lilyhammer”, playing ‘Giuseppe “The Undertaker” Tagliano’, older brother of his E Street bandmate Steven Van Zandt’s character, NYC gangster ‘Frank “The Fixer” Tagliano’.
• Ciara – She and rapper Future have split (again), following rumors of his alleged infidelity. A source tells E! News they ended their engagement weeks ago after failing to work things out. They have a baby son together whom they cruelly named ‘Future Zahir Wilburn’.
• Dr Dre – Designer Hannah Rothstein’s ‘Dr Dreidel’ is exactly what it sounds like … a wooden top with etchings of the rap mogul on each side. Just in time for Chanukah.
• FKA twigs – The English singer-songwriter’s relationship with actor Robert Pattinson is said to be getting serious, so serious friends are expecting them to soon get engaged. If they do wed, odds are her real name will appear on the marriage certificate … Tahliah Debrett Barnett.
• Good Charlotte – Friends tell “Us Weekly” magazine that 42-year-old actress Cameron Diaz (“Annie”) has become engaged to 35-year-old Good Charlotte rocker Benji Madden after just 7 months of dating.
• Madonna – Likely due to the recent online leak, it’s been announced her new album is entitled “Rebel Heart” and is due out March 10th. A total of 6 digital tracks have been released in advance.
• Taylor Swift – “1989″ is expected to return to the top of the ‘Billboard 200′ this week thanks to increased pre-Christmas sales. That would give her a total of 30 weeks atop the album chart in her career. “Blank Space” is currently at #1 on the ‘Hot 100′ singles chart.
• U2 – Belfast residents are complaining about disruption caused by a video shoot thought to be for the track “Every Breaking Wave”. It includes scenes of burning vehicles and actors playing wounded victims. As well as the noise and smoke, some have voiced concerns the band is cashing in on ‘The Troubles’, Northern Ireland’s longtime Catholic-Protestant conflict.

‘TIS THE SEASON … FOR STRESS!
A few odd ways to bust stress this holiday season …
• Give yourself an ear massage. Huh? Just trust us on this one. Massage your ears from lobe to top, using gentle pressure. Think of it as a needle-free acupuncture session.
• Take a posture break – Sit up tall, focus on your shoulder blades, trying to get them to touch each other. Then shift them down as far as you can. Hold for 5 seconds, relax and repeat.
• Release tension headaches. That pounding in your head could be due to an unlikely culprit … your jaw. Focus on unclenching your teeth and allowing the jaw to relax.
• Think of yourself. During the holiday season it’s easy to get caught up in wanting to please everyone. Try making a little room for yourself by being selfish. Even if it’s just for an hour.
• Stretch it out. Yoga experts encourage regular stretching to relieve your body of stress. That can be as simple as lifting your arms above you and stretching your fingers toward the ceiling.
• Just breathe. When things seem uncontrollable, breathe in and out of your nose using slow, deep, steady breaths. This calms the parasympathetic nervous system, which lowers stress.
• Don’t say yes, say maybe. If you’re feeling over-scheduled, there is nothing wrong with taking some time to see if you really want to commit to something.
– Condensed from @nydailynews

CHRISTMAS AROUND-THE-WORLD:
• Finland – Families decorate the holiday tree with geometric mobiles made out of straw. It’s also customary to enjoy a sauna before Santa’s visit.
• Germany – It is traditional for children to decorate their Christmas lists with pictures and then leave them on the windowsill overnight. It’s the ‘Christkind’ who delivers gifts at Christmas.
• Iceland – 13 jólasveinarnir, or ‘Christmas Lads’, deliver presents to children. Originally, each showed up on a specific day around Christmas and performed a trick or prank.
• Ireland – It’s traditional for Irish families to leave out mince pies and Guinness Ale as a snack for Santa Claus.
• Italy – Italian families celebrate Christmas Eve with the Feast Of the Seven Fishes. Children in Italy receive gifts from ‘La Befana’ (the kindly witch) during Christmas.
• Japan – Even though it’s not an official holiday, children receive presents on their pillow during Christmas night. A traditional Christmas dinner in Japan is KFC chicken.
• Jamaica – Jamaicans dress in elaborate costumes and celebrate with parades featuring ‘Junkanoo’ dancers. The festival is thought to have begun as early as the 16th century.
• Norway – A bowl of porridge is left in the barn for the gnome who protects the farm. People hide all the brooms in the house to prevent witches from stealing them for a midnight ride.
• Poland – The traditional Christmas meal is called ‘Wigilia’, derived from the Latin phrase ‘to watch’. It’s believed that what happens during ‘Wigilia’ festivities predicts the coming year.
• Russia – Christmas is celebrated on January 7th, according to the traditional Julien calendar. That’s when ‘Babouschka’ brings gifts to children. Christmas was officially banned 1917-1992.
• Spain – The Spanish dish, turrón, a confection made from honey, egg white, sugar, and toasted almonds, is served during Christmas. Traditional recipes date back to the 16th century.
• UK – Mistletoe was first hung as a Christmas decoration in Britain. However, the tradition of kissing under the mistletoe is most likely of Scandinavian origin.
• Ukraine – It’s traditional to hang spider web decorations, thanks to an old tale about a poor family who awoke Christmas day to find their tree covered in webs glistening silver and gold.
– Condensed from RD.com

BS AMAZING FACTS:
• More teens now smoke electronic cigarettes than regular cigarettes.
– “St Louis Post Dispatch”
• The world’s oceans contain nearly 700 pieces of plastic for each person on the planet.
– USAToday.com
• Worldwide, 43 countries have banned spanking, but not Canada or the USA. The list here …
NET: http://tinyurl.com/yjll7ra
– Vox.com

BS CHRONOMETER 12.22.14


TODAY’S CELEBIRTHDAYS . . .
1945 [69] Diane Sawyer, Glasgow KY, former TV news anchor (“ABC World News” 2009-14, “Good Morning America” 1999-2009, “20/20″ 1998-2000, “60 Minutes” 1984-89)

1962 [52] Ralph Fiennes, Suffolk UK, movie actor (“Harry Potter” films, “Schindler’s List”)/stage actor (Tony Award-”Hamlet”)

1989 [25] Jordin Sparks, Phoenix AZ, pop singer (w/Chris Brown-”No Air”, “Tattoo)/”American Idol 6″ winner (2007)

1993 [21] Meghan Trainor, Nantucket MA, pop singer (“Lips Are Movin”, “All About That Bass”)

TODAY’S BS REASONS TO PARTY . . .
• “Abilities Day”, honoring disabled people and their care-givers. It is also a time to recognize that we all have abilities and disabilities of various kinds.

• “Capricorn the Goat” astrology sign begins. People born under the sign are said to be practical, disciplined, methodical, organized, cautious, and careful.

• “Haiku Poetry Day”, celebrating the unrhymed Japanese style of verse that’s written in 17 syllables divided into 3 lines of 5, 7, and 5 syllables. A sampling for the season: Twelfth Day of Christmas / Shouldn’t have had all that nog / Drums are way too loud!

• “International Arbor Day”. What a great time of year to honor trees … just as we’re slaughtering them en masse and dragging them into our homes!

THIS DAY IN SHOW BIZ . . .
2006 [08] “Night At the Museum”, starring Ben Stiller, opens in movie theaters (spawns the sequels “Night At the Museum: Battle Of the Smithsonian” in 2009 and “Night At the Museum: Secret Of the Tomb”, which opened over the weekend)

2007 [07] Late night TV talk show host Jimmy Fallon weds producer Nancy Juvonen

TODAY’S MUSIC EVENTS . . .
1979 [35] Rupert Holmes’ “Escape (The Pina Colada Song)” hits #1

1984 [30] “Like A Virgin” by Madonna hits #1 on the pop singles chart (in 2000, she weds film director Guy Ritchie on this date in Dornoch, Scotland … she was not a virgin)

2002 [12] Joe Strummer, lead singer of legendary Brit punk band The Clash, dies in Broomfield, England at age 50 of an undiagnosed congenital heart defect (there is now a deep sea snail named after Joe Strummer)

TODAY’S FIRST . . .
1714 [300] Polish physicist & engineer Gabriel Fahrenheit invents the 1st practical thermometer

COMING UP . . .
[Tues] “One Direction: The TV Special” (NBC)
[Wed] Christmas Eve
[Wed] Egg Nog Day
[Thurs] “Big Eyes”; “The Gambler”; “Into the Woods”; “Unbroken” open in movie theaters
[Fri] Thank-You Note Day
[Fri] Whiners Day
This Week Is … Halcyon Days
This Month Is … Bingo’s Birthday Month

BULL’S BITS


BEST OF BS:
Highlight bits culled from 21 years of “Bull Sheet” back issues …
BEST CAR TOOLS OF ALL-TIME:
There are only a few tools you actually need to fix any car, anyplace, anytime …
5. Vice-Grips
4. Spray Lubricant
3. Big Rock at the Side of the Road
2. Ridiculously Large Standard Screwdriver
1. Duct Tape
– First published in “BS” 2004.

BS HOLIDAY ETIQUETTE FOR DOGS:
• Be especially patient with your humans during this time. They may appear to be more stressed-out than usual.
• Be tolerant if your humans put decorations on you. They seem to get some special kind of pleasure out of seeing how you look with fake antlers.
• Do not pee on the Christmas tree.
• Do not drink water in the container that holds the tree.
• Do not chew on the cord that runs from the funny-looking hole in the wall to the tree.
• A big man with a white beard and a very loud laugh may emerge from your fireplace in the middle of the night. Do NOT bite him!
– First published in “BS” 2011.
NET: http://www.FreeRadioPrep.com

BS PHONE STARTER:
☎ If they ever did a remake of “It’s a Wonderful Life”, what modern-day actor should get the Jimmy Stewart role?

BS WEB GOODIES:
• Wow! 33 festive Christmas tracks stuffed into a 38-minute music mix, peppered with seasonal film & TV clips, and even edited blurbs from Queen Elizabeth II’s annual Christmas message.
NET: http://tinyurl.com/kh7l27s
• For the first time, Google Maps Business View offers an up-close look at the extravagant holiday window displays at major department stores in London and NYC (Harrod’s, Sak’s, Bloomingdale’s, etc).
NET: http://tinyurl.com/kgbwab2

BS RANDOM JOKE:
Marriage is a 3 ring circus: engagement ring, wedding ring … enduring.

BS U-PICK TRIVIA:
• Where does the ‘X’ in the Christmas short-form ‘Xmas’ comes from?
a. French
b. Greek [CORRECT. 'X' is the letter 'Chi' in the Greek alphabet.]
c. Atheism

• Apart from “Boxing Day”, what is December 26th also known as?
a. St Nicholas Day
b. St Stephen’s Day [CORRECT]
c. Refund Day

BS WATER COOLER QUESTION:
Question: THIS is what causes about half of us to lose up to 90 minutes of sleep per night.
Answer: Pets in bed with us.

BS DEEP THOUGHT:
Women who seek to be equal to men lack ambition.


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