Friday, December 7, 2012        Edition: #4885

Thanks For Being On Our Sheet List!

The 1982 hit “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five has been named the ‘Greatest Hip-Hop Song of All-Time’ in the first such ranking by “Rolling Stone” magazine in today’s issue ( . . . Today’s issue of “Us Weekly” suggests Jessica Simpson’s new pregnancy may have put her $4-million Weight Watchers deal in jeopardy, as execs were already ticked their spokeswoman missed the weight-loss target for the first ad, so they had to shoot from the waist up (dudes, all the hullabaloo is nothing but free publicity) . . . Actor Russell Crowe has been hanging out with a crowd of friends in the courtyard of the Greenwich Hotel in NYC, drinking and singing and smoking suspicious-smelling cigarettes, and all that has reportedly angered the hotel’s co-owner – Robert De Niro (cage match!) . . . Actor Mel Gibson tells “Extra” he may reach out to perpetually troubled Lindsay Lohan to see if she needs his help (that’s like getting driving lessons from … well, Lindsay Lohan) . . . Actor Johnny Depp has just purchased a $17.5-million, 20,000-sq-ft mansion in Nashville, the 2nd home he’s bought since his breakup with Vanessa Paradis, the other being a $5-million crash pad in LA (by comparison, just a hovel) . . . And TV personality Anderson Cooper apparently spent too much time on the water during a recent assignment for “60 Minutes” (CBS) and inadvertently sunburned his eyeballs causing temporarily blindness for 36 hours, leading to what may by our favorite headline of the year courtesy of “Anderson Cooper Went Blind After Burning His Balls” (apologies for the 11-year-old boy humor).

• “Chelsea Lately” (E!) – Blake Shelton (“Cheers, It’s Christmas”). Rerun.
• “Christmas in Washington” (TNT) – Sunday Conan O’Brien hosts a lineup that includes Chris Mann (“The Voice”), Diana Ross, Megan Hilty (“Smash”), Demi Lovato (“X Factor”), PSY, and Scotty McCreery (“American Idol”). President Obama & the First Lady are expected to attend the benefit concert, to be taped for airing December 21st.
• “Ellen DeGeneres Show” (syndicated/CTV2) – Today Christina Aguilera (“Lotus”).
• “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (ABC/CityTV) – Tonight Future (“Pluto”); Reba McEntire (“Malibu Country”). Rerun.
• Jingle Ball (NYC) – Tonight at Madison Square Garden the annual star-studded, holiday-theme concert sponsored by NYC Top 40 station Z100 [WHTZ] features performances by BoB, Jason Mraz, Justin Bieber, Ne-Yo, One Direction, Taylor Swift, and The Wanted.
• “Last Call With Carson Daly” (NBC) – Tonight Divine Fits (“A Thing Called Divine Fits”). Rerun.
• “Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson” (CBS) – Tonight Richie Sambora (“Aftermath Of the Lowdown”).
• “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon” (NBC/CTV2) – Tonight Big Boi (“Vicious Lies & Dangerous Rumors”).
• “Late Show With David Letterman” (CBS/NTV/Omni1) – Tonight One Direction (“Take Me Home”).
• “Live With Kelly & Michael” (syndicated/CTV) – This morning Donnie Wahlberg (New Kids On the Block).
• “Saturday Night Live” (NBC/Global) – Host Jamie Foxx (“Django Unchained”, opening December 25th); musical guest Ne-Yo (“R.E.D.”).
• “Tonight Show With Jay Leno” (NBC/CTV2) – Tonight Garbage (“Not Your Kind of People”).
• UR1 Festival (Miami FL) – Saturday-Sunday performers at Bayfront Park amidst the Art Basel Miami Beach art show include Jane’s Addiction, Kanye West, Keane, Lou Reed, and The Offspring.

• Alicia Keys – She tops the new ‘Billboard Top 200’ album chart with her new release “Girl on Fire”. That gives her a 5th #1 album, following her first 3 studio sets and 1 live release. Taylor Swift’s mega-hit album “Red” is hanging tough at #2.
• Beyoncé – Producer The-Dream tells “Billboard” she’ll release new music before her performance at the Super Bowl in New Orleans on February 3rd. She began recording her 5th studio album during the Summer.
• Faith Hill / Tim McGraw – Tonight they bring their “Soul2Soul” show to Las Vegas, kicking off a limited engagement that covers 10 weekends through April 2013 at the 1,800-seat Venetian Theater. The all-new production combines their hits both as solo artists and together.
• Jay-Z – He’s released the short documentary “Where I’m From” on YouTube, which chronicles the making of his recent series of 8 shows at Brooklyn NY’s new Barclays Center. The film includes rehearsals, behind-the-scenes footage, and samples from a few of the concerts.
• Justin Bieber – His manager Scooter Braun has taken to Twitter to accuse the Grammy Awards of making a terrible mistake by failing to nominate the pop star. (What award would be appropriate?)
• Michael Bublé – Here’s an odd pairing: He’s confirmed that actress Reese Witherspoon will sing a duet with him on his upcoming album. No word yet on what song they’re singing together.
• Rihanna – She’s capping off her busy year by teaming up with Style Network to executive-produce and star in its first-ever competition reality series. “Styled to Rock” will be where music meets fashion in the search for the next great fashion design superstar.
• Rolling Stones – Saturday they play the Barclays Center in Brooklyn NY, where Mary J Blige and guitarist Gary Clark Jr join them on stage. Blige already appeared at the first of 2 anniversary shows the band played at London’s O2 Arena, singing “Gimme Shelter”.
• Shakira – Her ex-boyfriend Antonio de la Rúa is suing her for $100 million, accusing her of breach of contract for failing to pay an agreed-upon cut for his contributions to her career during the time they were together. Apparently it was an ‘oral agreement’. (And therefore not worth the paper it wasn’t printed on.)
• Taylor Swift – She and 18-year-old One Direction singer Harry Styles have now reportedly spent a 2nd night together. (Isn’t a little pervy that the world is tracking their sleepovers?)

• “Playing for Keeps” ( PG-13 Romantic Comedy ): A former sports star who’s fallen on hard times starts coaching his son’s soccer team as a way to get his life together. His attempts to become an adult are met with challenges from the attractive soccer moms who pursue him at every turn. Stars Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel, Dennis Quaid, Noah Lomax.
• Opening in limited release: “Cheerful Weather For the Wedding (Comedy); “Deadfall” (Crime Thriller); “Heleno” (Sports Biography); “Hyde Park on Hudson” (Historical Biography); “In Our Nature (Drama); “Lay the Favorite” (Comedy); and “A Werewolf Boy” (Fantasy).

Two veteran spacefarers have been chosen to spend a full year aboard the International Space Station – many times longer than the usual tour of duty – as part of research into the physiological effects of long stays in space. US astronaut Scott Kelly and Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko will fly to the ISS in 2015 and come back to Earth, in Kazakhstan, in 2016. Both have been in space for around 6 months each, over several different missions. (If it were you going, what 3 things would you take with you?)

Hard to believe, but these are real products currently available online …
• ‘Bacon Candy Canes’ (6 for $6.95) – They may look like plain old red & white striped candy canes, but they actually are bacon-flavored. After all, peppermint is so old school. Now you can get the snappy scent and yummy flavor of bacon in your favorite Christmas candy.
• ‘2013 Hot Guys & Baby Animals Calendar’ ($14.99) – That’s right, chiseled guys without shirts holding coot widdle bitty baby animals … kittens, puppies, colts, piglets, and of course bunnies. They’re so cuddly! (And so are the animals.)
• ‘Magic Growing Christmas Tree’ ($3.50) – Set it up, pour in the ‘Mystic Water’, and within 1 hour, you’ll begin to see little green sprouts on the branches. By the end of 12 hours, your bare tree has turned into a gorgeous, miniature Christmas tree. (Sort of a Chia pet with branches.)
• ‘2012 Sucked Button’ ($2.50) – A useful item that’s perfect for the pessimist on your list. Bright red print on a white background so people get the in-your-face message loud and clear! Eeyore will love it!
– BS Original

New research from the UK’s University of Southampton has found that feeling nostalgic can make us feel physically warmer. In one of several studies, volunteers, who were recruited from universities in China and the Netherlands, were asked to keep an account of their nostalgic feelings over 30 days. Results showed they felt more nostalgic on colder days, according to researchers. (Yeah, nothing like digging up an old Spice Girls cassette to make you feel warm all over.)

Transparency International has just released its annual ‘Corruption Perceptions Index’ on the perceived level of public sector corruption in 176 countries around-the-world. Once again Somalia, North Korea, and Afghanistan rank as most corrupt, with scores of just 8 (the higher the score, the better). Burma, also known as Myanmar, joined them last year but has since moved up 2 spots, just ahead of Sudan. Least corrupt? A tie amongst Denmark, Finland, and New Zealand with scores of 90. (Australia #7, Canada #8, USA #19.)

Most people speak at a rate of 120 words per minute, or 2 words per second. The excitable amongst us, however, manage to splurt out between 160 and 195 words per minute. But the world records for fast talking exceed 600 words per minute, slightly more than 10 words per second. Canadian-born Sean Shannon of Oxfordshire UK holds the Guinness Record for ‘World’s Fastest Talker’ at 655 words per minute. Fran Capo of NYC holds the record for ‘Fastest Female Talker’, at 603 words per minute. (They could have an entire conversation in 5 seconds.)


1949 [63] Tom Waits, Pomona CA, Grammy-nominated contemporary folk singer-songwriter (“Bad as Me”)

1977 [35] Dominic Howard, Stockport UK, rock drummer (Muse-“Neutron Star Collision”, “Uprising”)

1979 [33] Sara Bareilles, Eureka CA, pop singer (“King of Anything”, “Love Song”)

Classic rock singer Gregg Allman (Allman Bros) is 65; Rock guitarist Phil Collen (Def Leppard) is 55; TV actress Teri Hatcher (“Desperate Housewives”) is 48; TV actor David Harewood (“Homeland”) is 47; Indie rock guitarist Nick Zinner (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) is 38; Movie actor Dominic Monaghan (“Lord Of the Rings”) is 36; TV actor Ian Somerhalder (“The Vampire Diaries”) is 34; NFL QB Philip Rivers (San Diego Chargers) is 31; Hip-hop artist Nicki Minaj (“Super Bass”) is 30.

Movie actress Judi Dench (“Skyfall”) is 78; Movie actor John Malkovich (“Dangerous Liaisons”) is 59; Vegas entertainer Donny Osmond is 55; TV actress Felicity Huffman (“Desperate Housewives”) is 50; Rock guitarist Brian Bell (Weezer) is 44; Rock singer-guitarist Jakob Dylan (The Wallflowers) is 43; Rock drummer Tre Cool (Green Day) is 40; TV actor Simon Helberg (“Big Bang Theory”) is 32.

• “Cotton Candy Day”, celebrating the sweet, sugary taste-treat that melts in your mouth. It was invented in 1897 as ‘Fairy Floss’, then renamed in 1920. In Greece, Israel, and India it is often referred to as ‘Old Woman’s Hair’. Yuck.
• “Faux Fur Friday”, an excuse to wear your furriest synthetic outfits and accessories for an enjoyable day. (But isn’t it cruel to kill acrylics for their fur?)
• “Letter Writing Day”, when we’re encouraged to take a few minutes to send someone a handwritten letter. Letter-writing has almost become a lost art. When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone, either printed or in cursive?
• “Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day”, observed on the anniversary of one of the defining moments in American history, the 1941 Japanese raid on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii which caused the USA to enter WW2. It’s the 71st anniversary of the ‘date which will live in infamy’.

• “Hanukkah” begins at sundown, the 8-day Jewish “Feast of Lights” or “Feast of Dedication”. The menorah, holding 8 candles, has become a symbol of the holiday. Traditional foods include latkes and jelly doughnuts.
• “International Shareware Day”, celebrating public domain software you can try before you buy.
• “Pretend To Be a Time Traveler Day”, when you’re encouraged to imagine for the day that you are a visitor from a different time. (So past or future, pal?)

• “Christmas Card Day”, commemorating the first commercial Christmas card, commissioned by Sir Henry Cole in London, England in 1843, which featured an illustration by John Callcott Horsley. His cheery little card depicting a family with glasses raised in a Christmas toast was widely denounced at the time as promoting drunkenness.
• “International Anti-Corruption Day”, to raise awareness of corruption and of the role of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption in combating and preventing it.
• “Pastry Day”, a fun day created to encourage you to make, and of course eat, your favorite pastries. (Initiated by the ‘Danish’?)
• “Worldwide Candle Lighting Day”, the 16th annual observance on the 2nd Sunday of December, when we’re encouraged to light candles at 7 pm local time to honor and remember children worldwide who have died at any age from any cause.
• “World Choral Day”, celebrated the 2nd Sunday in December for the past 20 years, when thousands of choirs have joined in the celebration at concerts, festivals, sing-alongs, and other events.

2001 [11] The caper movie remake, “Ocean’s Eleven”, featuring an all-star ensemble cast (George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Julia Roberts) opens in theaters (spawns sequels “Ocean’s Twelve” in 2004 and “Ocean’s Thirteen” in 2007)

1991 [21] Michael Jackson’s “Black Or White” reaches #1 on singles chart; U2’s “Achtung Baby” debuts at #1 on album chart

1969 [43] 1st broadcast of holiday TV special “Frosty the Snowman”

1934 [78] University of Washington running back Byron Haines scores all the points in a football game – for both teams – as he runs for a TD, then is later is pushed back into his own end zone for a safety (final score UW 6, USC 2)

[Mon] “American Country Awards” (FOX)
[Mon] Nobel Prize Day
[Tues] “Viva Forever” opens (London)
[Tues] International Mountain Day
[Wed] “12.12.12 Benefit Concert” (NYC)
[Wed] Gingerbread House Day
[Wed] Poinsettia Day
This Week Is … Human Rights Week
This Month Is … Colorectal Cancer Education & Awareness Month


Use ‘em all at once or one-at-a-time as the zodiac reading of the day …
• Aries – Avoiding disagreements will be the key to a stress-free month for you. And don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!
• Taurus – You will come up with the theory you can learn a lot about people simply by removing the first letter of their first name. That said, it’s likely a good idea to avoid Alice.
• Gemini – Another one of those excruciatingly boring meetings today. Try to liven things up by summoning one of the people in attendance back from the dead.
• Cancer – According to Jupiter passing through Van Halen’s belt, you will see an ancient symbol in the whorls of your fingerprints. Not to worry, it’s just a vitamin B12 deficiency.
• Leo – Pretending to know what you’re talking about when you don’t know what you’re talking about is seldom a good idea. Trust me, I know what I’m talking about!
• Virgo – A good time to learn to laugh at yourself and develop multiple personalities. That way you won’t be laughing at you, you’ll be laughing with you.
• Libra – It takes a certain kind of person to admit that they were wrong. This person is not you. Stubborn prick.
• Scorpio – Someone will turn a cold shoulder to you and your feelings will be hurt. You’ll get even later though, by turning a tepid elbow to them.
• Sagittarius – Bad news! The option of looking on the bright side will no longer be available to you this month. Still, you can always pretend the glass is half full instead.
• Capricorn –  Try leaving the thinking to someone else this month. It’ll be safer for everyone!
• Aquarius – Being in love isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Not that you’d know.
• Pisces – If we’ve read your chart correctly, this weekend will change your life forever. Well, for the weekend anyway.

I try to get behind early so I have plenty of time to catch up.

☎ Should there be a fine for spitting out chewing gum in public areas? (Singapore has levied fines for years. Mexico is now considering a federal tax of 50% on chewing gum, to cover the cost of cleaning up discarded wads on sidewalks and in plazas and parks.)

We all know who the 1st man on the Moon was, right? But can you name the LAST person to walk on its surface? (Apollo 17, the final US Moon mission blasted off 40 years ago today.)
a. Andy Kaufman.
b. Eugene Cernan. [CORRECT. The Flight Commander’s lunar strolls occurred December 11-13, 1972, making him the last man on the Moon. Scientist Jack Schmitt accompanied him on some walks.]
c. Trick question, Neil Armstrong was first AND last.

Question: When couples divorce, women are 78% more likely to get THIS.
Answer: The family pet.

Marriages are made in heaven. So are thunder and lightning.

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