May 21 2024

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Tuesday, May 21, 2024 — Edition: #7716

You Really Know Your Sheet!


★ Ben Affleck appears to have returned to his broody self. He reunited with wife Jennifer Lopez on Sunday amid rumors they are headed for divorce. The pair attended a movie event at the Aero Theater in Santa Monica, then made their way to Soho House, a private members club. J-Lo looked chic in a pair of slacks and a turtleneck sweater, covered with a long trench coat. But Ben, being Ben, opted for his signature look of jeans, sneakers and a Boston-themed T-shirt. Notably, Affleck was wearing his wedding band, which had been absent in recent days, including while attending his child’s school play on Friday.
★ Britney Spears is in increasing danger of hurting herself or others, say numerous people in and around her life, according to a TMZ report. The outlet quotes sources as saying that some of her aquaintences are scared for her and believe the only path for long-term survival is another conservatorship. TMZ’s sources say Spears’ mental health has been in a tailspin since the conservatorship ended, and she often does not take the meds that stabilize her, and she is drinking and using various drugs, resulting in radical mood swings and rages that end in physical violence. TMZ also says that her current boyfriend, Paul Soliz, a felon, is running her household, and her life.
★ Cassie Ventura’s lawyer is responding after Sean “Diddy” Combs issued an apology following the release of a 2016 video that shows him shoving and kicking the singer. Sunday, Diddy shared a statement via an Instagram video, writing in the caption: “I’m truly sorry”. In the clip, he said he’s “disgusted” with himself and is taking “full responsibility” for his actions. Ventura’s lawyer responded with a statement which says, in part, that “Combs’ most recent statement is more about himself than the many people he has hurt”, and “he was only compelled to ‘apologize’ once his repeated denials were proven false.”
★ “Horizon: An American Saga,” Kevin Costner’s risk-it-all Western epic, rode into Cannes on Sunday, earning a 7-minute standing ovation, which brought him to tears. Costner was visibly emotional as the film received huge applause and chants of “Kevin! Kevin! Kevin!” During his speech, Costner thanked the audience and promised “3 more” installments of the “Horizon” franchise, which is already due to get a sequel in August. He also got a laugh from the crowd when he remarked: “I’m sorry you had to clap that long for me to understand that I should speak.”
★ “Avengers” star Chris Hemsworth will be honored with the 2,781st star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame this Thursday. Hemsworth, who plays ‘Thor’ in the Marcel Cinematic Universe, will receive his star in the category of Motion Pictures. Speakers on hand for the presentation will include Robert Downey, Jr. and filmmaker George Miller. Hemsworth stars in Miller’s highly anticipated “Mad Max” prequel “Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga”, which opens this Friday.


• “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (ABC/Global): Kevin Costner, Pamela Adlon, HARDY, Slash
• “The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon” (NBC/CTV): Bill Maher, Rose Byrne, Andrew Jarecki, ZAYN
• “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” (CBS/Global): Billie Eilish
• “After Midnight” (CBS/Global): Jim Rash, Nat Faxon
• “Late Night with Seth Meyers” (NBC/CTV): Kirsten Dunst, Sean Casey, Ryan Dempster (R)
• “Watch What Happens Live” (Bravo): Michelle Buteau, Jesse Lally
• “The Daily Show” (COM): TBA
• “The View” (ABC/CTV): Bill Maher
• “The Talk” (CBS): Jerry O’Connell
• “Live with Kelly and Mark” (ABC/CTV): Anya Taylor-Joy, “American Idol” winner performs
• “The Kelly Clarkson Show” (Check local listings): Olivia Munn, Kim Raver
• “The Drew Barrymore Show” (Check local listings): Ted Danson, Chelsea Handler
• “Jennifer Hudson Show” (Check local listings): Fat Joe, Le Sserafim
• “FBI” (CBS): Season 6 finale. Followed by season finales of “FBI: International” and “FBI: Most Wanted”.
• “The Voice” (NBC): Season 25 finale Part 2. Performers include The Black Keys, Jelly Roll, Kate Hudson, Lainey Wilson, Muni Long, Thomas Rhett and Gina Miles.
• “The Cleaning Lady” (FOX): Season 3 finale
• “Will Trent” (ABC): Season 2 finale
• “The Rookie” (ABC): Season 6 finale

• Miley Cyrus – Friday, she released a cover of Talking Heads’ 1977 hit ‘Psycho Killer’.  It appears on “Everyone’s Getting Involved: A Tribute to Talking Heads’ Stop Making Sense”, out now. LINK:
• Ariana Grande – ‘We Can’t Be Friends (Wait for Your Love)’ is at the top of Billboard’s Pop Airplay chart. That’s her 10th Pop Airplay #1. The only other acts with that many since the chart’s 1992 debut are: Taylor Swift, with 13, Maroon 5, Katy Perry, and Rihanna (11 each), and Justin Bieber with 10.
• Guns N’ Roses – Slash says the group is “trying” to make a new album. When asked why singer Axl Rose doesn’t guest on his new solo album, the guitarist said: “Guns N’ Roses are trying to make their own record and I’m working with them in that capacity but this didn’t involve anyone else (from the band)”.
• Bonnie Raitt and Little Feat – got together to record a cover of the Muddy Waters classic ‘Long Distance Call’. It appears on Little Feat’s first album since 2012, “Sam’s Place”. The album, recorded at Sam Phillips’ legendary Nashville studio, includes covers of songs by Waters, Willie Dixon, Little Walter and Bobby Charles, plus one original. LINK:
• Paul McCartney – is now the first UK musician to become a billionaire. The Sunday Times Rich List pegs his net worth at 1 billion pounds (US$1.27 billion). He boosted his wealth by £50m in the past year with touring, the increased value of his back catalogue, and Beyoncé’s cover of 1968’s ‘Blackbird’.
• Post Malone and Morgan Wallen – Their collab ‘I Had Some Help’ has reached #9 on Billboard’s Country Airplay chart in just its second week. Billboard also indicates that the song is a contender for #1 on the May 25 all-genre Hot 100 chart.
• Miranda Lambert – is sticking with what she knows for her upcoming album. Speaking about her first new record since “Palomino” in 2022, she said: “It’s very country. You can tell we made it in Texas.” Earlier this month, she dropped the first single, ‘Wranglers’. No title or release date for the album yet.
• Keith Urban – “The Voice” Season 25 Mega Mentor performed his current single ‘Messed Up As Me’ on part 1 of the show’s season finale last night. Up next for him is a performance at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, part of CMA Fest 2024, on June 8th.
• Luke Combs – After some serious thought, this was his answer to the question of what his “desert island album” would be: “I’d probably do, like, Tom Petty’s greatest hits, Eagles greatest hits, maybe, there’s just so much there… I’d feel like I’d really want bang for my buck, and I’d really want greatest hits.”


Another reason to sound the alarm bells regarding Artificial Intelligence: AI systems these days are becoming increasingly sophisticated. How sophisticated? A report by the Center for AI Safety in San Francisco warns that with engineers and developers working to make AI as “human” as possible, some systems are now capable of telling lies. The research team wrote in its report that “Large language models and other AI systems have already learned, from their training, the ability to deceive via techniques such as manipulation, sycophancy, and cheating the safety test.” This poses short-term “risks such as fraud and election tampering, to long-term risks, such as losing control of AI systems.” In one example, the AI system CICERO, developed by Meta to play the strategy game Diplomacy, turned out to be an expert liar — despite its creators’ efforts to make it honest and helpful. It was found to “make alliances with human players, only to betray them later, in pursuit of victory.” Another system learned to cheat on tests designed to prevent it from engaging in harmful financial behaviors. Even more scary, just like a student might only behave when the teacher is watching, it learned to “play dead” during evaluation, only to pursue its own goals once it was no longer under scrutiny.
(Cheating and lying? Wow! AI is more human-like than I thought!)
(Some day, the takeover of society by Artificial Intelligence will make for a great movie plot…if it’ll let us make it!)

➢ You’ve heard of the buzzword “FOMO”, the Fear Of Missing Out. Now comes “FOPO”. Experts say the Fear Of People’s Opinions is becoming more and more common these days. It’s a concept named by psychologist Michael Gervais who also authored a book on the topic. Gervais says that today’s society centers other people’s opinions, making them hard to ignore ― and the fear of them can hold you back from your full potential. Those who know, say that something as innocent as pretending you’ve seen a movie that you’ve never actually watched, or scrolling your phone in an attempt at appearing busy are both signs of FOPO. You may also fall into the FOPO trap if you tend to panic about a text message that reads “OK,” or if you study your friend’s face for negative reactions to a funny story. Gervais feels that FOPO is “a pre-emptive process to increase our acceptance in the eyes of others and…to avoid rejection…and what we end up doing is we scan our world for approval.” (Thanks. Now I think I have FOMO over FOPO!)
➢ A study once found that when it comes to listening to and enjoying new music, the average person hits “taste freeze” at age 33. That’s when most people stop listening to top 40 hits. Fortunately, that doesn’t mean you don’t enjoy music beyond that age. Nor does it necessarily mean that you only enjoy the “oldies”.  What happens, according to data assembled by Spotify, is that musical tastes diversify around age 33. Some discover alternative music, classical music, world music, or jazz. They also tend to follow new songs by the aging pop stars of their youth, but when it comes to younger artists…not so much. While ‘taste freeze’ has probably always existed, music streaming seems to have enhanced it…and Spotify gave it a name. (Not sure why, but suddenly I’m craving ice cream…!)
-HuffPost, PsychologyToday

Summer’s almost here, and with it, of course, comes “auto-reply” season. That’s when, for a period of time, it seems like you receive an “out of office” response from every person that you send a work email to. I guess a shorter way of putting it might be to call it “vacation season”. But it turns out that 80% of us truly believe there is a distinct difference between a “trip” and a “vacation”. In a survey of 2,000 US adults with travel plans this summer, a “vacation” was most-often defined as travel strictly for relaxation (53%). Meanwhile, a “trip” is travel for a purpose, such as an event (32%) or simply getting out of one’s town or city (30%). And when summer holiday time mercifully arrives, what are the main signs that you’ve officially entered “vacation mode”? 59% said it’s when you arrive at the hotel, and 47% said it’s not until you get that first breath of ocean air.
(For me, it’s the minute the boss leaves on HIS vacation!)
(To me, a trip and a vacation both involve going away to somewhere nice. The difference? If my wife comes along, it’s a trip. If she doesn’t, then it’s…well, you know!)

As the price of your trip to the supermarket continues to rise, here are some ways to make your bill smaller — without cutting out your favorite foods…
☞ Be aware of how much you spend on food: Go over old receipts and credit card info to figure out how much you currently spend on groceries. Then make small, incremental changes to reduce the amount. (Like peeling oranges in-store, so they’ll weigh less?)
☞ Make a meal plan: Have an outline prepared of how you plan to eat everything you buy –especially produce, so it doesn’t go bad.
☞ Check the fridge first: Actually, check the pantry too. This way, you don’t end up with duplicates – and are only buying what you truly need. Bonus: Challenge yourself to use only the groceries you already have at home. You’ll be surprised at what you have on hand – and you’ll save the cost of a trip to the supermarket.
☞ Reduce meat consumption: Some cut back on meat for health reasons, but it can be beneficial for your wallet, too. Try reducing the amount of meat you use in a recipe. For example, use 3/4 of a pound of beef rather than 1 pound in a recipe. No one will notice a difference.
☞ Buy frozen produce: As you know, it can spoil quickly. Instead, buy it frozen. Purchase it in its simplest frozen form, because produce in a microwaveable bag, or covered in sauce or purée will be more expensive.
☞ Buy spices in bulk: Those tiny, costly jars are a waste of money if you cook with spices regularly. You refill an empty spice jar from the bulk bins. Buying in bulk can also apply to dried pasta, rolled oats, rice and other grain products. (And chocolate! Don’t forget chocolate!)
☞ Don’t buy products at eye level: You’ve heard this before. Stores place the more expensive items right in front of your face. Reach up or down for better deals. (Being short has saved me hundreds over the years!)
(To these tips, I can add one more: Don’t have teenagers!)

A University of Toronto study of the medical records of more than 700,000 patients found that hospitals with a higher proportion of female anesthesiologists and surgeons had slightly better surgery outcomes. Patients treated at hospitals with more than 35% women in those roles had a 3% lower chance of experiencing a major complication. Three percent might not sound like a lot, but when the sheer volume of surgeries performed each year is considered, that adds up to a significant number of patients who could potentially be spared from complications if health facilities had more gender-diverse operating staff.


• “World Day for Cultural Diversity”, a UN-sanctioned event to help communities understand the value of cultural diversity and learn how to live together in harmony. (We’re gonna need more than one day for that…)
• “Wait Staff Day”, set aside for restaurant managers and patrons to show appreciation for the efforts of servers. A few questions to consider …
– What percentage is the proper tip these days?
– Are there occasions when you don’t tip?
– Should restaurant owners get away with paying minimum wage and expecting customers to
supplement servers’ incomes?
– What other occupations deserve tips?
• “Rapture Party Day”, an excuse for an impromptu bash on the anniversary of late radio evangelist Harold Camping’s prediction that the world would end on May 21, 2011. (It didn’t.)
• “Dinosaur Day”, a Paleontologists favorite day! Dinosaurs are thought to have first appeared during the Triassic period, between 243 and 231 million years ago. The name ‘dinosaur’ is Greek, meaning “terrible lizard”. (BS FACTOID: While many think dinosaurs were massive, they were usually human sized or smaller. Scientists believe that bones from larger ones were easier fossilized, and therefore more likely to survive to present-day.)
• “Red Cross Founder’s Day”. The American Red Cross was founded on this day in 1881 by Clara Barton, the first president of the organization. The American Red Cross is a humanitarian organization that does things like this:
— Provides community services to help the needy
— Provides communications services and comfort for military members and their families
— Collects, processes, and distributes blood and blood products
— Coordinates educational programs on preparedness, health, and safety
— Provides international relief and development programs
• “International Tea Day”. Did you know that more people drink tea than any other beverage besides water? And why not? Tea has a number of health benefits: It is anti-inflammatory, contains antioxidants, and assists with weight loss. Tea also holds cultural significance in many parts of the world.
• “Memo Day”, a day for office workers who are tired of receiving memos from bosses to post their own. The ultimate act is to post a memo complaining about … too many memos. (Then clean out your desk and go home…)
• “I Need a Patch For That Day”. The word “patch” has several definitions…
– A piece of material used to mend a torn or worn spot in a piece of fabric.
– A cloth badge sewn onto clothing, like boy scout or girl scout patches.
– A pad worn over the eye to protect it.
– A medicated pad worn on the skin to deliver a drug slowly over time, such as nicotine or birth control patches.
– A piece of code added to a program to correct a security vulnerability or error, or to make the program work better.
– A small area of ground, like a garden patch.
[Wed] World Goth Day
[Wed] Harvey Milk Day
[Thurs] Taffy Day
[Fri] Brother’s Day
This Week is…International Pickles Week
This Month is…Home Improvement Month

1941 [83] Ronald (“Mr. Biggs” Isley, Cincinnati OH, pop singer (The Isley Brothers-‘Twist & Shout’, ‘This Old Heart of Mine’)

1948 [76] (Gerard) “Leo” Sayer, Sussex England, pop singer (‘You Make Me Feel Like Dancing’, ‘When I Need You’)/songwriter (Cliff Richard, Roger Daltrey, Three Dog Night)

1951 [73] Al Franken, New York NY, comedian (“Saturday Night Live” writer-performer 1975-80, 1985-95)/politician (US Senator [Democrat, Minnesota] 2009-18)/radio host (“The Al Franken Show”)

1952 [72] “Mr. T” (Laurence Tureaud), Chicago IL, TV actor (“The A-Team” 1983-87)/movie actor (“Rocky III”)

1955 [69] Stan Lynch, Cincinnati OH, rock drummer (ex-Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers-‘You Got Lucky’, ‘Mary Jane’s Last Dance’), toured with the Eagles

1957 [67] (Edward) “Judge” Reinhold, movie actor, Wilmington DE (“Fast Times at Ridgemont High”, “Beverly Hills Cop” movies, “The Santa Clause” movies) COMING UP… “Beverly Hills Cop: Axel F”, 2024

1959 [65] Nick Cassavetes, New York NY, movie director (“The Notebook”)/movie actor (“Face/Off”, “Blow”)

1966 [58] Lisa Edelstein, TV actress, Boston MA (‘Dr. Lisa Cuddy’ on “House” 2004-11, “The Good Doctor” 2018-19)/movie actress (“Daddy Day Care”)

1980 [44] Gotye (Wouter De Backer), Bruges Belgium (raised Melbourne Australia), pop singer-songwriter (f/Kimbra-‘Somebody That I Used to Know’)

1980 [44] “Star Wars Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back”, starring Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, and Billy Dee Williams, opens in theaters

1999 [25] “All My Children” star Susan Lucci finally wins a Daytime Emmy after being nominated 19 times, the most unsuccessful nominations in television history

2003 [21] Ruben Studdard beats Clay Aiken to win the second “American Idol” competition

2016 [08] Following the release of his album “Views”, Drake places a record 20 songs on the Hot 100, besting Justin Bieber’s mark of 17 set in 2015 (Current record: Morgan Wallen’s 36, following the March 2023 release of “One Thing at a Time”)


2014 [10] The “National September 11 Museum” in NYC opens to the public


2005 [19] The ‘Tallest Roller Coaster in the World’, Kingda Ka, opens at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, NJ (456 feet or 139 meters, still a record)


✓ People born in May have the lowest risk of illness and disease, while those born in October have the highest, according to a study.
✓ An average adult’s stomach can hold about 2 quarts (1.9 liters) of food.
✓ NASA invented the “Dust-Buster”.
✓ Your dog can get a sense of when you’re supposed to be home from work based on how much of your scent is left in the house.
✓ If you drilled a tunnel straight through Earth and jumped in, it would take you about 42 minutes to get from one side to the other.
✓ The Los Angeles Angels baseball team name translates directly to ‘The The Angels Angels’.
-BathroomReadersInstitute, UberFacts

Best of BS . . .
• I am currently at a job interview and will reply if I fail to get the position. But be prepared for my mood.
• I’m not really out of the office. I’m just ignoring you.
• You are receiving this automatic notification because I am out of the office. If I were in, chances are you wouldn’t have received anything at all.
• Sorry to have missed you, but I am at the doctor having my brain removed so that I may be promoted to management.
• I will be unable to delete all the unread, worthless emails you send me until I return from vacation on 5/18. Please be patient and your mail will be deleted in the order it was received.
• Please reply to this e-mail so I will know that you got this message.
• I’ve run away to join a different circus.
-First published in BS in 2017

➠ Rumor has it that Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck are headed for divorce. (In a statement, J-Lo said that she needs some time alone, with just family, her thoughts, and 200 TV cameras…!)
➠ Season 22 of “American Idol” ended Sunday night. (And so did the career of the winner!)
➠ Mr. T turns 72 today. (I’m not gonna say he’s old, but these days he often forgets which fool he’s pitying before he’s even done pitying them!)
➠ Hard to ‘believe’, but Cher turned 78 yesterday. (Well, about 45% of her did…)
➠ A survey found that most people would rather have nude photos of them released than their bank account information. (Either way for me, there’s little interest…)


It’s true:


It is useless to try to hold a person to anything he says while he’s madly in love, drunk, or running for office.

What was the worst summer job that you ever had?


On average you’ll get around 10 of THESE per year. What are they?
Answer:  Headaches


There are two kinds of friends: those who are around when you need them, and those who are around when they need you.


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