Thursday, January 17, 2013        Edition: #4906

Another Sheetload of Bull!

Jessica Simpson has landed an NBC-TV pilot for a new comedy loosely based on her own experiences as a celebrity attempting to balance life as a mother and public figure (sounds like “Newlyweds 2”) . . . Meantime, Jessica says she’s tried to marry her fiancé Eric Johnson twice, but her unexpected pregnancies keep forcing them to call off the wedding (somebody ought to hose these two down) . . . Brit actor Idris Elba (‘Stringer Bell’ on “The Wire” 2002-04) has signed on for a 7-weekend residency as the DJ at London nightclub Love & Liquor, using the stage-name ‘Driis’ (much better than ‘Id’) . . . Adam Lambert, Frank Ocean, and Rufus Wainwright are among nominees in the ‘Outstanding Music Artist’ category for the 2013 “GLAAD Media Awards” (handed out in 3 ceremonies in LA, NYC, and San Francisco March through May) . . . Author Dan Brown’s 6th mystery novel, “Inferno”, will see protagonist ‘Robert Langdon’ tackle Dante’s epic 14th-century allegorical poem about the journey through hell (sorry, but Tom Hanks’ movie portrayal has permanently ruined this character) . . . In a new Ipsos/Reuters poll, “Lincoln” is favored to win ‘Best Picture’ at the February 24th Academy Awards, the choice of nearly a quarter of respondents (surprisingly, only 4% pick Golden Globe-winner “Argo”) . . . In the wake of Jody Foster’s public coming-out at the Golden Globes, “Argo” actor Victor Garber has now also confirmed he’s gay (neither of these announcements is any more shocking than a day that ends in ‘y’) . . . And asked why she doesn’t use Twitter, “30 Rock” star Tina Fey says that it’s ‘a useless compilation of uninteresting people’ saying things she doesn’t care about (amen, sister!).

• “American Idol” (FOX/CTV) – In part 2 of the season opener, hopefuls perform for the judges in Chicago.
• “Chelsea Lately” (E!) – T.I. (“Trouble Man: Heavy Is the Head”).
• “Conan” (TBS/CTV) – Jake Bugg (“Jake Bugg”).
• “Last Call With Carson Daly” (NBC) – Desaparecidos (“MariKKKopa / Backsell”). Rerun.
• “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon” (NBC/CTV2) – Michael Kiwanuka (“Home Again”).
• Sundance Film Festival (Park City UT) – The annual showcase for indie films reels through January 27th. 18 films premiere at this year’s fest, including Dave Grohl’s “Sound City” and Allison Ellwood’s “History Of the Eagles Part 1”. “Jobs”, Joshua Michael Stern’s bio-pic of Steve Jobs starring Ashton Kutcher, has been selected as the festival’s closing-night film.
• “Tavis Smiley” (PBS) – Highlights of past visits by singer-songwriter James Taylor.
• “Tonight Show With Jay Leno” (NBC/CTV2) – Train (“California 37”).

• Carrie Underwood – She tells the latest issue of “Allure” she doesn’t see any similarities between herself and Hayden Panettiere’s country diva on “Nashville” (ABC), even though the actress has said she modeled her nasty character on the country superstar.
• The Clash – Late frontman Joe Strummer is being remembered in the Spanish city of Granada, where he spent a lot of time living and working in the 1980s, with a square named in his honor. Local residents have been campaigning for years for a permanent memorial.
• Elton John – He’s finally confirmed that he’s a father for the 2nd time, to a son born in LA last Friday whom he & partner David Furnish have named Elijah Joseph Daniel Furnish-John. The couple’s first son, Zachary, was born on Christmas Day in 2010.
• Lady Gaga – She recently spent a boatload on Michael Jackson-related memorabilia and now UK’s “The Sun” is reporting she’s in talks to purchase his legendary Neverland Ranch, with an eye to restoring it to its former glory.
• Luke Bryan – Tonight he launches his first headlining major tour, the “Dirt Road Diaries Tour”, in Evansville, Indiana.
• Miranda Lambert / Dierks Bentley – Tonight the “Miranda Lambert & Dierks Bentley: Locked & Reloaded Tour” gets underway in Columbia, South Carolina. It continues through mid-April.
• Red Hot Chili Peppers – They’re set to headline the multi-venue “Big Day Out” festival Down Under, which kicks off on Friday in Sydney. They’re using the shows in Australia to throw their support behind the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society’s anti-whaling campaign.
• U2 – They’re working on a 13th album, provisionally titled “10 Reasons to Exist”. It will be their first release since 2009’s “No Line On the Horizon”. Bono says the band is “really in fine fettle”. That’s a good thing, we guess.

A BS selection of movies in the making …
• “Crimson Peak” – 24-year-old actress Emma Stone (“Gangster Squad”) has entered negotiations to star in writer/director Guillermo del Toro’s upcoming haunted house tale. Information about the movie’s plot is being kept under wraps but del Toro says his take on the ghost story will enable him to ‘play with the conventions of the genre’.
• “Hot Tub Time Machine 2” – MGM is in ‘exploratory talks’ with Rob Corddry, Craig Robinson, and Clark Duke to reprise their roles in a follow-up to the 2010 comedy that centers around 4 bored and unhappy guys who travel back in time to their 1980s heyday via a hot tub. The original film generated tepid box office but proved to be a massive home entertainment hit.
• “Jurassic Park 4” – Steven Spielberg’s reincarnated dinosaur adventure series returns June 13th, 2014. The 3rd film from the franchise (2001) will be released in 3-D later this year to get us ready for the long-awaited 4th instalment. It’s unknown if Spielberg will resume his place behind the camera for the next film, which will be shot in 3-D, or let someone else helm the film.
• “A Madea Christmas” – Lisa Whelchel, the actress who played ‘Blair Warner’ on “The Facts of Life”, is joining Chad Michael Murray and Larry the Cable Guy in Tyler Perry’s upcoming holiday season movie. The actress, who became a household fixture in the classic sitcom, is coming off a turn as a contestant on “Survivor” in the reality competition’s latest season.
• “The Taming Of The Shrew” – A modern-day take on Shakespeare’s 16th-century comedy has been announced this week, though a director is yet to be attached. Hollywood has used the play as the basis for dozens of films, most notably in 1967 with Elizabeth Taylor & Richard Burton. Anne Hathaway is said to be favored for the lead role in the new production.

Vampires and werewolves are out; so here are the hottest supernatural entities for 2013 …
5. Frankenstein’s Monster – As many as 6 “Frankenstein” films are in various stages of development. Suddenly ‘Dr Frankenstein’ and his monster are fashionable again.
4. Ghosts – There are several ghostly films coming out this year, including “The Conjuring”, “Haunt”, and “The Seventh Son” … not to mention “Paranormal Activity 5”.
3. Aliens – A few big-budget films this year may push them further to the forefront. For instance, “Twilight” author Stephenie Meyer will see her novel “The Host” adapted for the bigscreen.
2. Witches – “Beautiful Creatures”, an adaptation of the first book in a popular young adult series, is almost definitely the next big thing.
1. Zombies – 2013’s top supernatural creature is seeing a dramatic resurgence. Now that the vampire has become so last year, another member of the undead community will take its place.

A study from the University of Kansas and Wellesley College has found that you can deduce a great deal of personal info about people just by looking at their shoes. Some examples …
✓ Anxious, clingy people prefer new and well-maintained footwear to ease their bundle of nerves.
✓ People who wear practical shoes tend to be relatively agreeable.
✓ Calm, collected folks seem to get a kick out of wearing shoes that look uncomfortable.
✓ Aggressive people tend to wear ankle boots.
Now if you’re thinking your shoes don’t say anything your personality; you just picked them because they were comfortable and cheap – be aware that it’s only a certain personality type who thinks that way.
– Adapted from

• Don’t ski the yellow snow! A ski resort in Arizona fought for years for the right to make snow out of wastewater, and began doing so on Christmas Eve. Since then, complaints have come in about the yellow snow at the Arizona Snowbowl. The slope’s manager blames rusty pipes; others blame the fact that the water used to manufacture snow is from Flagstaff’s – ewww! – sewage treatment plant.
• Need something to go with your cast-iron pants? India has long had a love affair with gold, but one businessman there is so infatuated with the precious metal he’s dropped about $230,000 on a solid gold shirt. Over 20 goldsmiths toiled for 15 days to make the custom-ordered 7-lb (3-kg) garment, crafted from 14,000 22-karat gold rings linked together. It’s accessorized with 6 Swarovski crystal buttons and a belt also made of gold.
– “Los Angeles Times”
• “Dear Matt, you are a loser and you have a fat back.” Just one example of the individually-designed hate mail postcards drawn by London-based artist Mr Bingo. It all started when a drunken Mr Bingo impulsively tweeted that he’d send an offensive postcard to the first person who replied. Someone did, and now his hate mail has became so popular, he’s charging a fee to send expletive-laden and obscene postcards to whomever you wish. He’s even put out a collection of his nastiest work … “The Hate Mail Book”.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of King County in Washington state have staged a “Snow Day” at the Seattle Center for which they trucked in 162,000 lbs of snow (74,000 kg) in an attempt to stage the ‘World’s Largest Snowball Fight’. An on-site Guinness Records judge has verified that the 5,834 participants has indeed set a new world record. (Typical, in rainy Seattle they have to import snow.)

A 2012 study by the IBWA (International Bottled Water Association) has found that the average number of plastic water bottles used annually per person is 167.


1922 [91] Betty White, Oak Park IL, TV actress (“Betty White’s Off Their Rockers” since 2012, ‘Elka’ on “Hot in Cleveland” since 2010, “The Golden Girls” 1985-92)/movie actress (“The Proposal”)

1942 [71] Muhammad Ali, Louisville KY, 3-time heavyweight boxing champ with total career earning over $69 million/Parkinson’s victim

1957 [56] Steve Harvey, Atlanta GA, TV personality (“Steve Harvey” 2012, “Family Feud” since 2010)/movie actor (“Johnson Family Vacation”, “Madea Goes to Jail”)/standup comedian

1962 [51] Jim Carrey, Newmarket ON, movie actor (“A Christmas Carol”, “Bruce Almighty”)

1964 [49] Michelle Obama, Chicago IL, US First Lady since 2009/wife of 44th US president Barack Obama/fashion icon/poverty awareness and healthy eating advocate

1971 [42] Kid Rock (Robert James Ritchie), Romeo MI, country-rock singer (“All Summer Long”, “Picture”)

1980 [33] Zooey Deschanel, LA CA, TV actress (‘Jessica Day’ on “New Girl” since 2011)/movie actress (“500 Days of Summer”)/pop singer (She & Him-“In the Sun”/”I Can Hear Music”)/wed to Death Cab for Cutie frontman Ben Gibbard (2009-11)

1986 [27] Jeremiah Fraites, Ramsey NJ, folk rock drummer (The Lumineers-“Ho Hey”)

• “Customer Service Day”, an annual reminder of just how important it is for any business.

• “Judgment Day”, a day to look at yourself in the mirror and see how you’re doing on your New Year’s resolutions. Some dissenting folk somewhere have named this “Ditch New Years Resolutions Day”, a day to be honest with yourself and admit that you’re never gonna do it … whatever it was.

• “Kid Inventors Day”, to acknowledge past & present accomplishments of kid inventors and encourage the creativity of future kid inventors. It’s estimated a half-million children and teens invent things each year. Among them: waterskis, earmuffs, and the Popsicle.

1972 [41] Memphis, Tennessee officially renames Bellvue Street ‘Elvis Presley Boulevard’ (and all the new street signs immediately get ripped off)

1953 [60] A prototype ‘Chevrolet Corvette’ sports car makes its debut at General Motors’ “Motorama Auto Show” at NYC’s Waldorf-Astoria Hotel (still in production today)

1995 [18] NFL’s Los Angeles Rams announce their move to St Louis (the USA’s #2 market has been without a pro football team ever since)

[Fri] “Fringe” 2-hour series finalé (FOX)
[Fri] International Fetish Day
[Fri] “Broken City”; “Mama”; “The Last Stand” open in movie theaters
[Sat] Popcorn Day
[Sat] Tin Can Day
[Sun] Camcorder Day
[Sun] Disc Jockey Day
This Week Is … Hunt For Happiness Week
This Month Is … Personal Self-Defense Awareness Month


2-word couplets that refute one another …
• Act Naturally
• Found Missing
• Resident Alien
• Same Difference
• Sanitary Landfill
• Alone Together
• Small Crowd
• Clearly Misunderstood
• Pretty Ugly
• Religious Tolerance
(Asks listeners for more!)

☎ Normally in January we struggle to remember that it’s a new year when writing the date on memos and forms, etc. But a lot of people are saying this year it’s different, that they seem to always remember it’s 20-13. Is there something about ‘13’ that jogs the memory? Perhaps the fact the number is often perceived as unlucky?

• How many Coca-Colas will be consumed worldwide during the next hour?
a. 270,000.
b. 2.7 million.
c. 27 million. [CORRECT, over 600 million per day.]

• In which country is spilling salt considered good luck?
a. Austria
b. Japan [CORRECT]
c. Chile

Every time I walk into a singles bar I can hear Mom’s wise words: “Don’t pick that up, you don’t know where it’s been!”

Question: According to, about 1-in-4 women do THIS at work and they don’t care who knows about it.
Answer: Use the men’s restroom when the women’s is occupied.

Money can’t buy happiness but it sure makes misery easier to live with.

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