Wednesday, February 10, 2016        Edition: #5628

Good Morning, Sheetheads!

★ If you thought last year’s $125,000 Oscars swag-bag was ridiculous, listen up. The 2016 ‘Everyone Wins’ goodie bag, presented to top Academy Award nominees by Distinctive Assets, comes in at over $232,000 this year. Among the freebies: $55,000 10-day trip to Israel, $54,000 walking tour of Japan, $300 personalized M&Ms, sex toys, $275 toilet paper, and something called a ‘Vampire Breast Lift’ (a procedure that uses blood-derived growth factors to revive rounder cleavage without implants). Oh … and there are also underarm patches to keep (flop) sweat at bay. The Oscars ceremony is February 28th.
★ Reality TV personality Khloe Kardashian is reportedly back on the market after breaking up with boyfriend James Harden. An inside source says: “She dumped him weeks ago.” The 31-year-old “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” star struck up a romance with the 26-year-old Houston Rockets shooting guard in July, but it appears she put the romance on ice in October when her estranged husband, Lamar Odom, fell into a coma after overdosing on drugs at a Nevada brothel. She’s since put their divorce on hold and left Harden out in the cold.
– “Us Weekly”
★ Actor Hugh Jackman has revealed he’s undergone treatment for skin cancer for the 5th time in 3 years. He’s posted a post-op photo of his bandaged nose on Instagram. Living in Australia, Jackman is environmentally prone to suffer complications with basal cell carcinomas, but since he discovered his first one back in 2013, it’s become a regular occurrence. Jackman notes that basal cell may be the mildest form of cancer but says it’s serious, nonetheless, and urges us to “please use sunscreen and get regular check-ups”.
★ And producer Rick Rubin has teamed up with producer-musician Flying Lotus and film director JJ Abrams to create a “Star Wars”-themed album. “Star Wars Headspace” is a compilation project, which features original music, sound effects, and dialogue from the “Star Wars” franchise. The 15-track compilation is being released digitally February 19th and physically in stores next month. It includes tracks from Royksopp, Galantis, Rustie, and Kaskade, while Abrams and “Hamilton” creator Lin-Manuel Miranda have put together a ‘Jabba the Hut’ tribute track, titled “Jabba Flow”.

• “American Idol” (FOX) – 12 of the top 24 contestants perform in hopes of making it to the next round.
• “Conan” (TBS/CTV) – Lianne La Havas (“Blood”).
• “Ellen DeGeneres Show” (syndicated/CTV2) – Demi Lovato (“Confident”).
• “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (ABC/CityTV) – Maná (“Cama Incendiada”).
• “Last Call With Carson Daly” (NBC) – Miami Horror (“All Possible Futures”).
• “Late Night With Seth Meyers” (NBC/CTV) – Wynonna Judd (“Wynonna & The Big Noise”, out Friday).
• “Today” (NBC) – Thomas Rhett performs his 6-week #1 country single “Die a Happy Man”.
• “Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” (NBC/CTV2) – Halsey (“Badlands”).

• The Beatles – A lock of John Lennon’s hair has gone on sale from Dallas TX-based Heritage Auctions and bidding has already reached $12,000 with 10 days to go until the online auction closes. The 4-inch hank of hair has been in the collection of the original owner for 50 years.
• Beyoncé – There’s kerfuffle online about the ‘meaning’ behind her Super Bowl performance and her new song “Formation”. Some note that the gunbelts on her shoulders formed an  “X” (as in Malcolm X). Others claim her dancers appeared to give the Black Panther salute, and that “Formation” commemorates the 50th anniversary of the black power movement.
• Ellie Goulding – The 29-year-old singer says she and her musician-boyfriend Dougie Poynter are “pretty sensible” about managing their long-distance relationship. They’ve been dating on and off since 2013 but she admits: “We don’t see each other much.”
• Keith Urban – He’s been honored for his philanthropic efforts with a special award at the Country Radio Seminar in Nashville TN. He’s been presented with the ‘Artist Humanitarian Award’ for his  support of causes like the Make-A-wish Foundation and St Jude Children’s Hospital.

Scientists from the London School of Economics and the University of Edinburgh have set out to understand the link between intelligence and health by studying … dogs. After 68 Border Collies performed a series of cognitive tasks, it was determined those that do well at one task tend to also have high performance on others. The so-called ‘Mensa mutts’ were tested on navigational skills, how quickly they could find hidden food, if they could gauge differences in food quantities, and how well they could follow a human pointing gesture. The study also reveals that canines develop dementia in a way similar to their two-legged owners, meaning the study findings could potentially be applied to humans as well. ([Afternoon guy] is similarly intelligent to his dog … they both chase tail.)

A statistical look at who we are and the things we do …
• 90% of us say we have experienced ‘brain freeze’.
• 72% of men exaggerate how good they were at sports in school when talking to women.
• 33% of adults say they need a stuffed animal in order to fall asleep.
• 25% of men say they get tired after about 25 minutes of shopping.
• 20% of women say they have prayed before stepping on a scale.
• 15% of us admit that we have been known to fall asleep in the washroom at work.

Users of the Facebook mobile app have long complained that it drains smartphone battery life, even when it’s not being used, and now it’s been revealed just how true that is. A recent experiment has found that ditching the Facebook app on iPhones and instead using the Safari browser to access Facebook can lead to 15% more battery life at the end of each day. A similar experiment using Android smartphones has found that deleting the Facebook app saved an average 20% of battery life each day. On an Android device, you can access Facebook via Chrome. But how about user experience? Researchers say using Facebook on a browser is almost as good as the app. (If you quit Facebooking altogether, you save 72% of the time you spend staring at your hand each day.)
– “The Guardian”

A study by Israeli researchers has found that winners often become cheaters. It’s all about feeling a sense of entitlement. Researchers found a correlation between winning a competition and subsequently feeling entitled to win another and study participants prove they’re willing to cheat in order to do so. The bottom line: When success is measured by social comparison, dishonesty increases. When success is not based on beating someone else (ie: reaching a personal fitness goal), dishonesty decreases. If the researchers are correct, it could mean that one way to curb corruption and cheating is for governments, businesses, and other organizations to focus less on social comparisons and more on fixed goals. (For more info on winners becoming cheaters, google Tom Brady.)
– “Scientific American”

Cutting-edge vocab …
• ‘Awesomesauce’ –  The state of being extremely good or enjoyable or something or someone that is extremely good or enjoyable. (“You got 2 front-row tickets for Beyoncé? Wow, that’s awesomesauce!”)
• ‘Bookalike’ – A book cover that closely resembles another. (“This ‘Hunger Games’ ripoff series even uses a bookalike dust jacket.”)
• ‘Digital Diet’ – A deliberate reduction in the amount of time spent on the Internet. (“I’m on a digital diet. I’m only updating my statues 3 times a day now.”)

If your feline friend has a bad ‘cattitude’, the color of its fur might be a factor. Researchers at UC Davis have found a correlation between a cat’s markings and its personality. Calicos and tortoiseshells are more likely to be aggressive – to bite, hiss, scratch, or swipe – when interacting with humans, according to the study. It may have something to do with these cats having two X chromosomes. But this shouldn’t be interpreted to mean that cats of those colors are dangerous … they’re just feisty. On the flipside, the study has found that cats with solid black, gray, or white coats are less aggressive. Researchers want to be sure their findings don’t discourage people from adopting calicos and torties. Just because they’re more aggressive, they say, doesn’t mean they’re a problem. (Face it … all cats secretly want to kill you.)
– “San Jose Mercury News”

• The female ‘G-spot’ was nearly named the ‘Whipple Tickle’, after professor Beverly Whipple.
– “Mental Floss”
• It is illegal to possess more than 120 playing cards in Thailand.
– BBC News
• Hillary Clinton has spent more on pizza than any other candidate in the 2016 US presidential race.


1961 [55] George Stephanopoulos, Fall River MA, TV co-host (“Good Morning America” since 2009)

1967 [49] Laura Dern, Los Angeles CA, movie actress (“Wild”, “The Fault in Our Stars”)

1967 [49] Vince Gilligan, Richmond VA, TV show runner (“Better Call Saul”, “Breaking Bad”)/TV writer-producer (“The X-Files”)

1974 [42] Elizabeth Banks, Pittsfield MA, movie actress-director (“Pitch Perfect” films, “Hunger Games” films)

1981 [35] Uzo Aduba, Boston MA, TV actress (‘Crazy Eyes’ on “Orange Is the New Black” since 2013)

1991 [25] Emma Roberts, Rhinebeck NY, TV actress (‘Chanel Oberlin’ on “Scream Queens” since 2015)/movie actress (“We’re the Millers”)/niece of actress Julia Roberts

1994 [22] Makenzie Vega, LA CA, TV actress (‘Grace Florrick’ on “The Good Wife” since 2009)

1997 [19] Chloë Grace Moretz, Atlanta GA, movie actress (“The 5th Wave”, “Kick-Ass” movies)

2000 [16] Yara Shahidi, Minneapolis MN, TV actress (‘Zoey Johnson’ on “black-ish” since 2014)

• “Ash Wednesday”, the beginning of Lent. Lent, of course, is supposed to be a time of spiritual preparation for Easter that generally involves fasting and penance. Catholic tradition dictates that the 40 days before Easter be a time of restrictions.

• “For the Birds Day”, a highlight of “Wild Bird Feeding Month”. (So check your cookbook for some yummy wild game recipes.)

2006 [10] Final episode of cult favorite “Arrested Development” airs on FOX-TV (a later Netflix reboot lasts one further season)

2014 [02] Actress, singer, dancer, and diplomat Shirley Temple dies in Woodside CA at age 85 (the top Hollywood box-office draw for 4 years in-a-row 1935-38)

2013 [03] Mumford & Sons’ “Babel” is named ‘Album Of the Year’ at the 55th Grammy Awards; fun.’s “We Are Young” is ‘Song Of the Year’; Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know” is ‘Record Of the Year’

2007 [09] Illinois senator Barack Obama officially enters the race for the White House in Springfield IL

[Thurs] Don’t Cry Over Spilled Milk Day
[Thurs] Get Out Your Guitar Day
[Thurs] Make a Friend’s Day
[Thurs] Pro Sports Wives Day
[Thurs] Satisfied Staying Single Day
[Fri] “Deadpool”; “*How to Be Single”; “Zoolander 2” open in movie theaters
This Week Is … Funeral Service Education Week
This Month Is … Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month


✓ Power Nap – After dozing for a quick 15 minutes, this nap gives you the ‘power’ to go right back to sleep for the rest of the day.
✓ Cat Nap – The fastest way to rest and recharge before realizing that after resting and recharging, the world has become an even more boring and terrifying place.
✓ Existential Dread Nap – If you can’t stand the shocking meaninglessness of your existence, this 1-to-14 hour nap is your best bet.
✓ “Just Closing My Eyes For a Few Minutes” – We all lie to ourselves. Surely this little white lie won’t be the one that tips the scales and turns you into a nap addict. Or will it?
✓ Boredom Nap – For when you’ve got a few hours or even weeks between worthwhile things to do, see, or live for.
✓ Avoiding Upsetting Memories Nap – Did your ex just follow you on Twitter after not speaking to you for 3 years? Why not doze off instead of confronting your personal failures?
✓ Beauty Rest – Ideal for keeping your skin looking young even as your bones and positive memories turn to dust.
✓ The Waking Nap – For when you can no longer tell the difference between the torture of being awake and the numbness of being asleep.
✓ Dirt Nap – Ah, finally … total peace.
– Thanks to Sam Weiner

• According to tradition what happens to a woman who sees a goldfinch on Valentines Day?
a. She’ll marry a millionaire. [CORRECT. But sighting a robin means wedding a poor man.]
b. She’ll never wed.
c. She’ll fall pregnant by nightfall.

• On a scale of 1-to-10, how do most people rate themselves as kissers?
a. A terrific 10.
b. A slurpy 7. [CORRECT, according to a Harlequin Romance poll.]
c. A woeful 1.

• In the Middle Ages young people would draw names from a bowl to see who their valentines would be and then display them where?
a. On their earlobes.
b. On their hats.
c. On their sleeves. [CORRECT. The origin of the term ‘wear your heart on your sleeve’.]

☎ What’s the best way to discipline kids?

Lighten up! We all make big mistakes we pay for forever.

Question: We do THIS more when we’re in our 20s, then less and less as we get older.
Answer: Order pizza.

It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.

“The Bull Sheet” is off for a beach week February 15-19 inclusive. Subscribers will receive account credits for missed service days.

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