Wednesday, May 15, 2002        Edition: #2297
That was not dead air you just heard. That was me using sign language to introduce the next song for the hearing impaired.

TONIGHT just after midnight local time in New Zealand and Australia “Star Wars: Episode II – Attack Of The Clones” first opens as its simultaneous MAY 16 worldwide release begins (appropriate they get it first Down Under — 9 weeks of shooting was done in Sydney) . . . Buzz from the movie set of “Simone” is the film’s co-stars, 62-year-old Al Pacino and 30-year-old Winona Ryder, have become ‘intimate’ during shooting (now she’s stealing from Beverly D’Angelo!) . . . Ozzy Osbourne tells “Blender” magazine he’s hot for “Weakest Link” host Anne Robinson — quote: “I like the strictness. It turns me on!” (too bad Oz, the show’s cancelled) . . .
Drew Barrymore’s been secretly dating Albert Hammond Jr, guitarist with New York band The Strokes, for about a month . . . Michael Jackson has applied to the Russian space program for a spot on an flight to the International Space Station, after hearing about ‘N Sync’s Lance Bass planning to buy his way aboard . . . Britney Spears’ local Baptist church in Louisiana is urging her to seek forgiveness for her sins — smoking, under-age drinking and losing her virginity to Justin Timberlake – with a spokesman pontificating “I would have preferred it if she wore more clothes and if she had waited and had sex after marriage” . . . And in case you really care, Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake are reportedly a couple again — after he begged for her to take him back during a groveling phone call — and will be reunited this week when Britney flies into LA to shoot a video with “Austin Powers” star Mike Myers.

• ‘Chick Food’ — The gastronomic equivalent of the ‘chick flick’, food targeted at the ‘gal gourmet’ has included over 50 new women’s food products since 1999.
• ‘Nocebo Effect’ — The opposite of placebo, ‘nocebo’ is Latin for ‘I will harm’. Studies show people who believe they are going to be sick actually become ill and die far more often than those who don’t.
• ‘Repetitive Strain Drinking Injury’ – Yes, you can actually hurt yourself from lifting drinks! A 26-year-old British man was recently diagnosed with repetitive strain injury in his right wrist from hoisting 6 pints of beer 4 times per week. He now has to wear a wrist support.

A delay in Canada’s medicinal marijuana program caused by the reluctance of the US to supply seeds may be a blessing in disguise. Complaints are pouring in from several sources that pot grown by the US government for medicinal purposes is unsmokeable – stale, and full of sticks, stems and seeds. However, a spokesman for the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which grows the marijuana on a government farm in Mississippi denies the charges, saying, “Certain procedures are needed to make it smoke right.” (Is it just me or isn’t it a tad hilarious hearing the US government justifying the quality of its weed?)

Nottingham, England booze company Drinks Merchants says the UK government has finally issued it a permit to import a Czech Republic vodka that contains — cannabis seeds. (For people who need more than just booze to make a total ass of themselves.)

A study in “Science” magazine finds that babies around-the-world are basically speaking the same language by making the same pattern of sounds. Linguists think ‘baby talk’ resembles what may have been the original human language, based on sounds that are easy to make. (Now you know why they go gaga over the Goo Goo Dolls in Japan.)

Surprising new research shows that people who walk their dogs for exercise don’t get as much exercise as people who don’t have dogs. (But they do have flatter tummies from the stoop and scoop manuever.)

• 37% of Internet users in MARCH visited an adult Website, a percentage that has remained unchanged for about a year, according to research company Jupiter Media Metrix.
• Over 10% of the world’s population is now over age 60.
• In a new poll, a quarter of Canadian respondents say they’ve needed dental care in the past year but didn’t go to a dentist because of the cost.
• In another poll, 20% of Canadians with below-average incomes say they have not filled a medical prescription because of the cost.
• Nearly a third of women in North America color their hair, and that figure virtually doubles for working women in their 30s, 40s and 50s. The median age for starting to dye is 36, and to create ‘special effects’ is 27. About 69% have naturally brown hair.
• Only 1 in 4 Brazilians expect their spouse to remain faithful during marriage, a new study has found. (It’s all because of that floozy “Girl from Ipanema”.)


1951 [51] Chazz Palminteri, NYC, movie actor (“Analyze This”, “The Ususal Suspects”)

1964 [38] Dave Reid, Toronto ON, NHL winger (Colorado Avalanche)

1967 [35] John Smoltz, Warren MI, MLB pitcher (Atlanta Braves since 1988, 1996 Cy Young Award)

1969 [33] Emmitt Smith, Pensacola FL, NFL RB (Dallas Cowboys)/1st running back to reach 1,000 yards in 11 straight seasons/over 15,000 career yards

[UN] “International Day of Families”

TODAY Coca-Cola begins distributing its new ‘Vanilla Coke’ to the American market. A
separate roll-out is planned for Canada in a few weeks. (You can make your own — grab any cola, add a drop of vanilla, shake gently.)

TODAY the glitzy and glamorous “55th Cannes Film Festival” opens on the French Riviera and reels through May 26th. Woody Allen, famous for avoiding awards shows and festivals, will open the fest with his new comedy “Hollywood Ending”, although the film is not competing for prizes. Canada’s entries include Atom Egoyan’s “Ararat” which will play out of competition at
his insistence, and David Cronenberg’s “Spider” which will vie for the top prizes. It’s been estimated the 25,000 attendees at official receptions during this week’s festival will slog their way through 5,000 bottles of champagne, 3,000 bottles of red wine and 2,000 bottles of white, the effects of which will be alleviated by 64,000 cups of coffee.
• During filming you forgot to take lens cap off, released it anyway.
• Entire movie filmed through a peephole at the Hourly Rates Motel.
• Due to a typo, you paid top dollar to get Jack Nicklaus.
• Every time your film is shown, audience begins screaming “Focus!”
• No one’s seen it but you and your mom.

TODAY is “National Chocolate Chip Day”. Hey, any excuse to mow down on a dozen cookies is cool.

TODAY is “Peace Officer Memorial Day” observed by more than 21,000 police departments across North America to honor colleagues who’ve been killed in the line of duty. This is also “National Police Week”.

TODAY is “Hug Your Cat Day”, a day for humans to hug their cats without fear of scratches or hisses.
• Do you sleep in the same position all night because it annoys your cat when you move?
• Do you have more than 4 opened but rejected cans of cat food in the refrigerator?
• Do you put off making the bed until the cat gets up?
• Do you watch bad TV because the cat is sleeping on the remote?
Q: You are more likely to suffer intense allergic symptoms if a cat has this.
A: Dark coloring. Allergic reactions increase with the darkness of fur color, according to Long Island College Hospital research.

TODAY is “True Confessions Day”, a day to confess all those little secrets you’ve been keeping for years. (Coincidentally its also ‘Pack Up Your Clothes and Get Out, You Lying Bastard Day’.) Open the phone lines for some true confessions. You’ll be surprised what you get!

1930 [72] 1st ‘flight attendant’ as Ellen Church serves up snacks and drinks on a United Airlines flight from San Francisco to Cheyenne WY  NOTE: She was actually qualified as a pilot but because she was female the company would only employ her for ‘nurse’ duties like serving box lunches and brushing dead flies from windowsills

1940 [52] DuPont announces “Nylon Day” when ‘nylons’ replace silk stockings as part of WW2 effort

1993 [09] 1st Montréal Expo uniform retired (Rusty Staub’s #10)

1995 [07] 1st Canadian magazine to go online (“Maclean’s”)

1995 [07] 1st casino gambling site launched on the Internet

2000 [02] Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s new music director Bramwell Tovey eclipses the Guinness record for ‘world’s largest orchestra’ by conducting the VSO and 10,000 students at BC Place

[Thurs] Shavuot (Jewish) begins at sundown
[Thurs] Biographer’s Day
[Thurs] Wear Purple for Peace Day
[Thurs] “Star Wars, Episode II: Attack of the Clones” opens
[Thurs] Employee Health & Fitness Day
[Fri] 29th Daytime Emmy Awards
[Fri] National Bike to Work Day
[Sat] Visit Your Relatives Day
[Sat] International Museum Day
[Sun] “The X-Files” series finale
[Sun] “Survivor: Marquesas” finale
[Mon] Victoria Day
S-S-S-S-Stuttering Awareness Week
Mental Health Month


• If you think you’re indecisive how can you be sure?
• Can exceptionally talented ventriloquists throw their voice mail?
• Why is it that whenever you get more help at work, you get less done?
• If your co-workers start to sound reasonable, is it time to up your medication?
• Why is it when you get what you want you don’t want it as much?

Bloomers — Amelia Bloomer (1818–94), US women’s right campaigner
Bunsen burner — R. W. Bunsen (1811–99), German chemistry professor
Busking — Frederic M. Busk, (1898–1957), US Music Hall and street entertainer
Jacuzzi — Candido Jacuzzi (1903–86), Italian/US inventor and businessman
Leotards — Jules Leotard (1842–70), French trapeze artist
Masochist — Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, Austrian lawyer and novelist
Maverick — Samuel A. Maverick (1803–70), US cattle-raiser and politician
Pap smear — George Papanicolau (1883–1962), Greek/US physician
Salmonella  — Daniel E. Salmon (1850–1914), US veterinarian
Saxophone — Adolphe Sax (1814–94), Belgian musical-instrument maker
Tights — William Sebastian Tighte (1864–1930), Australian ballet dancer

• “Which celebrity has the sexiest eyes?” (A new poll by eye specialist Ultralase puts Cameron Diaz and George Clooney among the sexiest. The same poll credits Adolf Hitler, Rasputin and Osama Bin Laden with the ‘scariest’ eyes.)
• “What do you wish for when you blow out your birthday candles?” (26% of women polled say they wish for more time with their spouses, as opposed to just 3% of men. 21% of women admit they wish they were better looking. And 73% of only children polled wish for a brother or sister.)

Two of the following are facts, one is pure BS. But which one?
1. Mel Gibson was roommates with Russell Crowe in college. (BS. With actor Geoffrey Rush.)
2. Before he became successful at acting, Brad Pitt supported himself by driving strippers in limos.
3. “Spider-Man” actor Tobey Maguire originally wanted to be a chef, but turned to acting when his mother offered him 100 bucks to take Drama instead of Home Ec in high school.

“Adults are obsolete children.”
a) Dr Seuss
b) Mick Jagger
c) Homer Simpson
ANSWER: Dr Seuss.

Today’s Question: 30% of your friends can’t remember the last time they had this happened to them in a dark room.
Answer to Give Out Tomorrow: Eye exam.

People will buy anything that’s one to a customer.


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