Thursday, February 14, 2002 Edition: #2233
Well Happy Valentine’s Day For Sheet’s Sake!
Let’s face it, Canada isn’t doing extremely well at the Olympic Winter Games so far. But there’s good reason for that — prancing on ice?, sliding down a hill?, shooting at a target? — these are games for sissies! We’d be cleaning up if there were events like these . . .
BS REAL WINTER GAMES:
Endurance – Standing at a bus stop while getting repeatedly slushed by passing traffic.
Quickness – Jumping off your snowmobile before it goes through the hole in the ice.
Strength – Scraping an ice-covered windshield using only a credit card.
Dexterity – Driving while looking out a 6-inch square of an ice-covered windshield because your credit card broke.
Swiftness — Taking the garbage out to the garage wearing a bathrobe and no coat.
Innovation – Opening a frozen car door lock using only your breath.
Balance – Walking across a frozen pond without falling on your ass.
Speed – Shoveling two tracks down a driveway just big enough to back a vehicle through.
BS SIGNS YOU’RE ON A BAD VALENTINE’S DAY DATE:
Her eyes say ‘Yes’ but her probation officer says ‘No’.
He keeps asking “Would you like some more wine, Mommy?”
He’s hired three naked kids with little bows and arrows to ‘set the mood’.
She tells the waiter that she isn’t wearing any underwear.
His 10 words-per-minute typing means you spend most of the night staring at your monitor.
BS SHOW BIZ BUZZ:
A well-heeled figure skating fanatic bid $11,100 in an Internet auction for a pair of tickets to TONIGHT’S Olympic men’s figure skating final . . . The mystery of where George Harrison died is finally over — it’s been confirmed it was at Paul McCartney’s LA house (well, guess he’s still dead then) . . . “Friends” star Matthew Perry will guest star in a pair of upcoming “Ally McBeal” episodes as a ‘cocky, successful and opinionated attorney who wreaks havoc’ (it’s too late – this show’s on its last gasp and will likely be axed in MAY) . . . It will cost NBC-TV $156 million for 24 new episodes of “Friends” NEXT SEASON – the most ever paid for a TV series (and the net will do it happily because it was struggling to find a replacement show before the stars re-upped THIS WEEK) . . . And Bruce Willis claims he talked to his dead brother through a medium who can receive information from ‘the other side’ and began speaking in his brother’s voice, even cursing like he did (uh Bruce, that was when she dropped the crystal ball on her toe).
Clint Eastwood will direct and star in “Bloodwork”, a thriller about an aging FBI investigator on the trail of a serial killer (a bigscreen version of “CSI”) . . . Lasagna-munching comic strip fat cat ‘Garfield’ is coming to the bigscreen in a live action movie, but the big guy will be computer-generated (too bad, Brando would’ve been perfect!) . . . Action star Jet Li is re-teaming with his “Romeo Must Die” co-star DMX for the now-shooting thriller “Cradle to the Grave” (as long as DMX stays out of prison) . . . The first “Spider-Man” film doesn’t even come out until MAY 3RD and already they’ve signed star Tobey Maguire up for 2 sequels (isn’t this counting your spiders before they hatch?).
• There were actually 2 Saint Valentines, both martyred in the 3rd Century. Pope Gelasius declared February 14th “St Valentine’s Day” around 498 AD.
• During the Middle Ages, young singles drew names from a bowl to see who their ‘Valentine’ would be. They’d then wear the names on their sleeves for a week — the derivation of the term ‘wearing your heart on your sleeve’.
• Children in old England went door-to-door collecting ‘Valentine’s buns’. (Could have done it in one stop if they’d started at J-Lo’s.)
• “Valentine’s Day” is the most widely celebrated UNOFFICIAL holiday. About 1 billion “Valentine’s Day” cards are exchanged annually, making it the largest card-sending occasion next to Christmas. The total spent on Valentines accounts for about 20% of the greeting card market.
• National Retail Federation says “Valentine’s Day” is the 4th-biggest flower-selling occasion. According to a floral industry study, 70% of the roses sent on Valentine’s Day are sent by men. (And ordered at the last minute.)
• Post offices in Love, Saskatchewan and St Valentin, Québec process thousands of cards with a special Valentine’s postmark each year.
• TODAY a record number of couples are expected to marry in the annual “Mass Underwater Wedding Ceremony” off Thailand’s Kradan Island. 36 couples have already signed up. LAST YEAR, 34 couples from 22 countries donned diving gear to get hitched.
• On “Valentines Day” it is customary in Japan for women to give chocolates to men – husbands, male family members and co-workers — but they expect a payback. On MARCH 14, a celebration known as “White Day” in Japan, those who received chocolates for Valentine’s are expected to return the favor. (Why not avoid the middle man – buy some chocolates and inhale ‘em!)
• “Valentine’s Day” happens to fall during the annual mating season for elephants in Thailand. TODAY a lucky bull elephant with a friendly reputation will ‘get married’ twice, at 2 different Thai zoos. The 16-year-old privately owned ‘Ngathongthae’ will take part in a lavish marriage ceremony with a female at a game preserve, then travel to the state-owned zoo in Bangkok to wed again and mate with 3 MORE females. Don’t worry, he’s up to it — an elephant handler confirms he’s “a very healthy bull who can mate 4 or 5 times a day”.
“Jane” magazine polled its readers, mainly women 18-34, for their views on “Valentine’s Day”, and fully 40% said they’d like to eliminate it altogether. Editor Jane Pratt claims that’s because the celebration is from an old-fashioned time when men ‘courted’ women. (Nowadays it’s women who take men to court.)
Some highlight’s from THIS WEEK’S “New York Toy Fair”, the annual event where many of the most successful toys get launched (ie: ‘Barbie’) –
• ‘The Queasy Bake Oven’ – from Hasbro, the makers of the famous ‘Easy-Bake Oven’, comes this new version for bratty brothers that makes gross-out concoctions like ‘blend-a-booger’ drinks and ‘larva-licious cookies’. (As Martha Stewart says, anything that furthers gender stereotyping is a GOOD thing.)
• ‘Edible Tattoos’ – a new ‘wearable dessert’ from Tom & Sally’s Handmade Chocolates. Just rub a strawberry heart on your forearm, and later you’ve got a strawberry-flavored snack! (But there’s going to be a big problem with kids licking each other in the schoolyard!)
• ‘BebeSounds’s Prenatal Gift Set’ – talk, listen and play music to a fetus by strapping the mike and speakers to the pregnant mom’s belly. There’s 2 sets of headphones — one for mom, one for dad — and Mozart recordings to play for the unborn. (Creating your own ‘media womb’.)
• ‘Silly CDs Trading Cards’ – gross-out collectible trading cards that feature parody recording stars such as ‘Bruce Stinkjeans’, ‘Poop Dogg’, ‘Oozy Oozebutt’, and ‘N Stink’. (I’m not sure — would this qualify as an ‘educational toy’?)
• ‘Xtreme Ants Sports Park’ – the same old ‘ant farm’ you used to play with, only updated with a skateboard course, bungee jump, luge speedway and vertical climbing wall. (Rad, man! But the miniature bongs are sold separately.)
• ‘Billy-Bob Teeth’ – novelty teeth that are molded to your mouth, and available in a gold-plated version studded with a cubic zirconia. The company that makes them actually has a licensing deal with the next “Austin Powers” movie. (Because who wouldn’t want to look like Mike Myers?)
• ‘The Fish-Tank Submarine’ – in the tradition of radio-controlled cars and planes, Megatech’s fish-tank sub allows Junior the chance to give his goldfish heart attacks by chasing them around via remote control. (Your toilet will soon be plugged up.)
• ‘The Jesus Action Figure’ – this Chinese-made ultimate action hero comes with ‘pose-able arms’ and ‘gliding action wheels’ (what possible use can they be on water?), and in both light- and dark-skinned versions. (Loaves and fishes extra.)
BS WORLD NEWS QUICKIES:
• YESTERDAY PM Jean Chrétien and another of his ‘Team Canada’ trade missions arrived in Moscow for a series of talks on increased trade. (How about we send them raw materials and technological expertise and they GIVE US BACK THE GOLD?)
• San Diego CA city council has just approved a new ID card that will protect sick people who use marijuana from being arrested. (Uh huh. How long before these babies are being counterfeited?)
• Doctors at Norway’s national prison are being criticized for prescribing Viagra to inmates who are serving time for — sex crimes. (There’s also a bit of a kerfuffle over them giving a murderer an ax.)
• YESTERDAY New Zealand’s largest phone company Telecom Corp apologized and offered compensation to a customer after his monthly mobile phone bill included a $140 charge ‘for being an arrogant bastard’. (The written apology said, “Sorry a-hole, we meant $200.”)
• Belarus is accusing the Winter Olympics organizers of undermining their team’s chances by feeding them a diet of junky American fast food in the Olympic Village. (They’ve had to resort to sending out for their training diet staples of raw potatoes, vodka and steroids.)
THE BULL SHEET 02.14.2K2
TODAY’S CELEBIRTHDAYS . . .
1934  Florence Henderson, Dale IN, TV host (“Later Today”)/former TV actress (Carol Brady-“The Brady Bunch”)
1946  Gregory Hines, NYC, actor/dancer/Broadway star (Tony Award-“Jelly’s Last Jam”)
1948  (Raymond) Teller, Philadelphia PA, magician (the shorter, less obnoxious one of Penn & Teller) NOTE: Legally changed his name to simply ‘Teller’ and has one of the few US passports issued with a single name
1960  Jim Kelly, East Brady PA, former NFL QB (Buffalo Bills [1986-96]) who was just voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame (only QB to lose Super Bowl 4 consecutive times)
1965  Dave Lowry, Sudbury ON, NHL winger (Calgary Flames)
1972  Rob Thomas, Landstuhl military base GER, rock singer (Matchbox 20-“Push”, “3 AM”), 3 Grammy Awards w/Santana-“Smooth”)
1972  Drew Bledsoe, Ellensburg WA, NFL QB likely to be traded soon (the guy who sat on the bench while Tom Brady led the New England Patriots to Super Bowl championship)
1973  Steve McNair, Mount Olive MS, NFL QB (Tennessee Titans)
BS REASONS TO PARTY . . .
TODAY is “International Read to Your Child Day”. (“You want to hear ‘Peanuts’, ‘Hi & Lois’ or ‘Adam @ Home’?”)
TODAY is “National Have-A-Heart Day”, when vegetarians encourage you to quit eating animals. (Kill a carrot today!)
TODAY is “Ferris Wheel Day”, celebrating the 1859 birth of George Washington Gale Ferris, the Galesburg IL engineer who invented the ‘Ferris wheel’ for the 1893 Chicago World’s Exposition. The original wheel measured 250 feet in diameter and could carry an amazing 1,440 passengers.
TODAY’S MUSIC EVENT . . .
1984  Elton John marries Renata Blauel in Sydney, Australia (the next day he’s nominated for a ‘Best Actor’ award)
TODAY’S FIRSTS . . .
1899  1st ‘voting machines’ for use in US federal elections approved (and we all know what a time-saving innovation that turned out to be!)
2000  After keeping his remains in a cardboard box for years, Blessed John Duns Scotus Church in Glasgow, Scotland puts the bones of St Valentine on display (other European churches also claim to have some of his relics — they should get together and build a complete saint!)
TODAY’S RECORD . . .
1415  ‘Oldest known Valentine’ sent by Duke of Orleans to his French wife while he was imprisoned in Tower of London (still on display in a British museum)
AND REMEMBER . . .
[Fri] National Flag of Canada Day
[Sun] Daytona 500 (Daytona Beach FL)
[Mon] Presidents’ Day (USA)
[Feb 23] International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day (sounds like a contest idea)
[Feb 24] 2002 Olympic Winter Games close
[Mar 24] 74th Academy Awards
Celebration of Love Week
Heart Failure Awareness Week
Boost Your Self Esteem Month
National Children’s Dental Health Month
BULL’S BITS . . .
BS QUICK PICK TRIVIA:
Q: Which pagan fertility festival did “Valentine’s Day” replace?
A: The ancient Roman fertility festival Lupercalia.
Q: Which herb was an early symbol of “St Valentine’s Day”?
b) Bay leaves
A: Bay leaves (a bouquet is really cheap!).
Q: Who the heck was ‘Cupid’ anyway?
a) The Greek god of lust.
b) The Roman god of carnal love.
c) The Medieval angel of mercy.
d) The fictional little guy with a heart on.
A: Cupid was the Roman god of ‘carnal love’.
Q: In the 18th-century tradition of sending flowers as messages, what did a rose say?
a) “I am attracted to you.”
b) “You’re hot!”
c) “I love you passionately.”
d) “That’ll be 10 dollars, please.”
A: A rose meant “I love you passionately.”
Q: Which of the following has NOT been a symbol of “Valentine’s Day”?
A: Um, that would be salami.
VALENTINE TRIVIA QUESTION:
If a couple falls in love and marries in the Ozark Mountains, then moves to California and divorces, are they still legally brother and sister?
BS TAG LINE:
The best way to a man’s heart is to saw his sternum open.