Wednesday, September 24, 2008        Edition: #3864
Can You Believe This Sheet?

Legendary crime writer Dominick Dunne (“Justice: Crimes, Trials, And Punishments”) told friends ahead of time that his coverage of the current OJ Simpson trial for “Vanity Fair” would be his last and it might have been prophetic – the 82-year-old has been whisked from court to hospital after a medical emergency (may have to do with his ongoing cancer battle) . . . 22-year-olds Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen are reportedly feuding over their fashion empire, with Ashley looking to phase M-K out because of her wild, partying image (you mean it’s not just the same person with a different wardrobe?) . . . “Project Runway” host Heidi Klum has revealed she & singer-hubby Seal get married every year, and she’s celebrated their 4th renewal with an abstract tattoo on her right arm that represents their names & the initials of their 3 kids (someone who’s been married 4 times – and it’s a good thing!) . . . MTV has confirmed another spinoff from “The Hills”, a new show starring former regular Whitney Port that commences shooting immediately (she’s now working for fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg in NYC) . . . An Indian court has rejected that lawsuit filed by Warner Bros to block the release of a Bollywood film called “Hari Puttar – A Comedy of Terrors”, ruling that movie fans will easily distinguish ‘Hari Puttar’ from ‘Harry Potter’ (the film will open as scheduled across India FRIDAY) . . . “Eli Stone” star Jonny Lee Miller is set to become a first time parent alongside his current actress-model wife, Michele Hicks (he’s got a long way to go to catch up with his ex-, Angelina Jolie) . . . And Paul McCartney’s ex-, Heather Mills, has donated $1-million-worth of food in the form of veggie burgers to a NYC charity in the Bronx (sounds like somebody’s trying to buy a new image).

• “CMT Crossroads“ (CMT) – Trace Adkins & Southern rockers 38 Special perform mash-ups together. Frontman Donnie Van Zant & brother Johnny have recorded 2 country albums as the duo Van Zant.
• “Knight Rider” (NBC) – Premiere of a flashy, kitschy new version of the vintage program (1982-86) that made David Hasselhoff a pseudo-star. Along with ‘KITT’ (a 550-HP Ford Shelby GT500KR Mustang), the new version stars Justin Bruening & Sydney Tamiia Poitier. Who?
• “Tonight Show With Jay Leno” (NBC/A Channel) – Plain White T’s perform. Hopefully the new single “Natural Disaster” and not the terminally over-played “Hey There Delilah” …. aghhhh!

• Amy Winehouse – Her junkie husband Blake Fielder-Civil has apparently rejected an offer of early release from prison because … he’d have to go straight into rehab. So he said no, no, no.
• Bon Jovi – They’re now eligible for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame for the first time (to be nominated an act must have released its first single or album 25 years prior), but were not included on this year’s list of nominees announced MONDAY. Snub?
• Christina Milian – After being dropped by her former label, Def Jam, the “Dip It Low” singer is attempting a comeback by signing up with MySpace Records, a spin-off of the popular social networking site.
• Dolly Parton – Her new “9 to 5” musical, now playing at the Ahmanson Theatre in LA, is set to open on Broadway in APRIL.
• Kanye West – Filmmaker Spike Lee’s plan to turn him into a movie star has hit a snag … nobody wants to fund the film. Lee has written a sequel of his 1988 movie “School Daze”, which he intended to star West and singer Alicia Keys, but he’s yet to get a greenlight.
• Katie Perry – In Indonesia, when “I Kissed A Girl” is played on-air, the word ‘girl’ is bleeped out. (Wouldn’t that make it worse? “I kissed a [bleep] …”)
• Mariah Carey – She’s developing a movie musical about a small town facing destruction by real-estate developers during the holiday season. The project is said to be inspired by her best-selling seasonal album, “Merry Christmas”, and intended to star the diva herself. (She needs to hire someone to stand beside her and say the word “No”.)
• Weezer – They’re set to begin working on their new album in NOVEMBER. Drummer Pat Wilson says all 4 members will be involved in the writing process, which he says is a healthy way to keep everything feeling fresh after 15 years together.

New terms leaking into the lingo …
• ‘Chickenpox Parties’ – A new trend among those who don’t trust the chickenpox vaccine. They ensure their kids get immunity the old-fashioned way … by catching the disease from an infected child and suffering weeks of itchiness. Here’s how it works: When a child comes down with the disease naturally, others are invited by to come over and catch the feeling.
• ‘e-Fence’ – To sell stolen goods on the Internet, particularly using an online auction site such as eBay. (“I ended up doing 6 months-plus-a-day in the slammer. The judge didn’t believe me when I said I didn’t know being an e-Fence was an offence.”)
• ‘Secondhand Drinking’ – The negative effects that a drinker has on a non-drinker. (“I never got a ride to things as a kid because I’m a victim of secondhand drinking. At least my mom had the sense not to drive me anywhere when she was smashed.”)

A Norwegian study says unhappy people are better workers than cheerful ones. It seems happy folks overestimate their abilities and opt for easy answers that are obvious. Depressed workers are less confident, look deeper for solutions, and are more creative. Subsequent research seems to uphold this theory: University of Alberta psychologists have also concluded that miserable people make better workers because cheerful people waste too much time trying to maintain their happy mood, while their somber co-workers simply get on with the task at hand. (And they’re so much fun to have on your team, right?)
– BBC News

Have you ever outpaced cars on your bicycle and been honked at? Had a car almost wipe you out while making a turn? Inventors Brady Clark & Mykle Hansen have created a vest that lets cyclists show off how fast they’re pedaling. The gizmo uses a sensor on the bike wheel to send a signal to a micro-controller which then generates lighted numbers on the vest. What’s the point? It’s thought that putting more info in front of drivers may increase their awareness of bicycles. The inventors also question whether many drivers are aware that the average person cycles at 10-15 mph (15-25 km/h). (For those who covet one of those road construction vests with a day-glo ‘X’ on it, this is even snazzier!)

The Internet offers lots of ways to find out more about someone. For instance …
• Birth Database – Find out your date’s real age by plugging in the name and perceived age. This site will spit back all the people around the same age with the same name and give you actual birthplaces and birth dates. Over 120 million people are in the database.
• Don’t Date Him Girl – Find out if your date has a bad rep. Profiles of bad-news dates are posted here by real people and incorporated into an ever-growing database.
• Google Maps – Find out what your date’s house looks like before you go over by entering the address, then clicking ‘Satellite’. Use your mouse wheel to zoom in closer.
• Zaba Search – Find out where your date used to live. Just enter the name and the search engine coughs up past addresses from the last 10 years or so. Even creepier, there’s an option to sign up for notification each time someone searches your name on the site.
• Zillow – Find out what your date’s home is worth. Click on an aerial-view photo of the house to find out its current value. Though not always 100% accurate, it at least gives you a ballpark idea. Only works for US addresses.
It doesn’t count as cyber-stalking if you’re planning to go out, right?
– “Mental Floss Magazine“

The 1,728-page “Canadian Dictionary of the English Language” includes hundreds of  Canadianisms among its 150,000 entries that would make little sense elsewhere in the world. Among them …
• ‘Advanced Green When Flashing’ … A traffic light allowing left turns when flashing.
• ‘Distinct Society’ … The controversial designation of Québec as being unique due to its French heritage.
• ‘Deke’ … A hockey term meaning a feint or change of direction.
• ‘Marketing Board’ … An agency promoting specific farm products, ie: milk or eggs.
• ‘Riding’ … the term used to define a political district.

• Almost half the names given to dinosaur species between 1824 and 2004 are incorrect. 16% of the 1,401 names are duplicates, while another 32% are in some way erroneous.
• The origin of the word ‘dude’ is unclear, though one theory suggests it was spawned in the late 19th century by the word ‘dud’, which then meant ‘delicate weakling’. ‘Dude’ was first used in the 1870s to denote a dandy. By the 1930s, it meant ‘city slicker’ … especially one visiting a ranch. – Random House

1962 [46] Nia Vardalos, Winnipeg MB, movie actress/screenwriter (“My Big Fat Greek Wedding”)  UP NEXT: Writes & stars in the romantic comedy, “My Life in Ruins”, opening in MAY 2009.

1971 [37] Peter Salisbury, Bath UK, rock drummer (The Verve-“Love Is Noise”, “Bitter Sweet Symphony“)

• “Cherries Jubilee Day”, celebrating the decadent dessert that’s always served flambée. Wanna make a home version easily? All you need is a can of cherry pie filling, some cognac (or brandy), vanilla ice cream and … a match.

• “National; “Punctuation” Day!”, celebrating the traffic signs of written language. Wow! Eh?

• “Women’s Health & Fitness Day”, an annual observance on the last WEDNESDAY of SEPTEMBER to focus attention on the importance of regular physical activity and health awareness for women.

1991 [17] Children’s author Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known as ‘Dr Seuss’, dies in La Jolla, California at age 87  FACTOID: Dr Seuss’s German-derived name is properly pronounced ‘zoice’ (rhymes with ‘voice’).

1991 [17] Nirvana album “Nevermind” is released (some list it as one of the most significant albums of all-time)

2007 [01] Aerosmith cancels the biggest concert ever scheduled for Maui, Hawaii because their equipment purportedly can’t be transported from Chicago in time (leads to a still pending class action lawsuit)

1927 [81] Toronto ‘St Patricks’ hockey club 1st uses name ‘Maple Leafs’

1968 [40] 1st edition of “60 Minutes”, TV’s longest running news magazine, with Harry Reasoner & Mike Wallace (back when Andy Rooney is only 75)

1979 [29] 1st ‘Online Service’ (CompuServe, later absorbed by AOL)

1984 [24] ‘Longest Recorded Kiss’ sets “Guinness Record” at 17 days, 10.5 hours (Eddie Levin & Delphine Crha in Chicago IL)

1988 [20] At the Summer Olympics in Seoul, Korea, Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson wins Gold and sets a new world record for 100 meters at 9.79 (later tests positive for steroids and loses the medal & the record)

[Thurs] One Hit Wonder Day
[Thurs] Comic Book Day
[Thurs] “Grey’s Anatomy” (ABC); “The Office” (NBC); and “Survivor: Gabon” (CBS) season premieres
[Fri] Food Service Employees Day
[Fri] “Eagle Eye”; “The Lucky Ones”; “Miracle at St Anna”; and “Nights in Rodanthe” open in movie theaters
[Sat] Hunting & Fishing Day
[Sat] World Tourism Day
This Week Is … Adult Immunization Awareness Week
This Month Is … Cholesterol Education & Awareness Month

Some are outdated; some are just plain wacky; but all are real …
• On the island of Jersey, it’s against the law for a man to knit during the fishing season.
• In Italy, it is illegal to make coffins out of anything except nutshells or wood.
• In Alabama, it is against the law to wear a fake mustache that could cause laughter in church.
• In Québec, an old law states that margarine must be a different color than butter.
• In Cleveland, Ohio it’s illegal to catch mice without a hunting licence.
• In Idaho, it is forbidden for one citizen to give another a box of candy that’s heavier than 50 lbs.
• In France, it is illegal for a person to kiss another on railways.
• In Kentucky, it is illegal to carry ice cream in your back pocket.
• In Israel, religious law forbids picking your nose on the Sabbath.
• In Virginia, drivers may keep their roadkill … as long as they report it within 12 hours.

He was so poor growing up, he had to steal his wardrobe from scarecrows.

You’re reading the newspaper comics when you come across ‘plewds’. What’s that?
a. It’s the proper name for one of those word bubbles where dialogue appears.
b. It’s the series of wavy lines emanating from something indicating an odor.
c. It’s a series of exclamation points or other typographical symbols used to indicate foul language.
d. It’s the flying sweat droplets that appear around a character’s head when working hard or stressed. [CORRECT]
– “The Lexicon of Comicana” by Mort Walker

• You can name everyone that you graduated high school with … and what they’re doing now.
• You often see people wearing bib overalls … at funerals.
• Your busiest intersection doesn’t have a stoplight.
• You’ve often seen a car left running in the store parking lot with no one in it
• You’ve seen all the biggest bands … 10 years after they were popular.
• You could never buy cigarettes because all the store clerks knew how old you were.
• You actually go to the post office to get your mail.
• You notice whenever there’s a new car in town.
• You know several people who have hit a deer.
• You can recognize 5 or more types of farm machinery and describe what they’re used for.

What is the greatest accomplishment of your life? Is there anything you hope to do that is even better?

Today’s Question: Studies show that spouses are better able to solve a marital conflict if THIS is in the room.
Answer to Give Out Tomorrow: A dog.

To err is human; to blame it on someone else is more human.

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