Monday, June 30, 2008

Where Have I Been?

I know, I've been MIA, thanks to the 10 of you that noticed.

I'll make it up to you, with my 10 favorite news stories of the last 2 weeks, in no particular order.

Harmony in Unity
I'm glad Hillary and Barack made nice, but the way they did it makes me want to throw up. And I want to throw up right on the town of Unity, NH. Unity, NH, a town so united, the town's democrats cast exactly the same number of votes for Obama as they did for Clinton. Doesn't sound like unity to me. And to the democrats - stop giving the media the easy way out when it comes to punnery and wordplay. Make 'em work for it.

Gas Prices Hurting Brothels

This is my favorite "gas prices hurting business" story of all time. Brothels in Nevada are experiencing a roughly 25% decline in business because of high gas prices. See, 75% of brothel clients are long-haul truckers who have to spend double what they spent a year ago on gas, leaving less money, presumably, for, um, other things.

But the brothels aren't taking this lying down. One brothel is offering $50 gas cards to clients who spend $300, and $100 cards for those who spend $500.
Another, the Moonlite BunnyRanch (the one made famous by HBO's Cathouse: The Series...don't act like you don't know...) is offering to provide double the services for the first 100 people who spend their economic stimulus checks at the brothel.
The BunnyRanch calls its promotion "Double Your Stimulus."

Man Leaves Jail Naked, Gets Arrested Again
In a related story, well, the headline pretty much covers it. Guy gets let out of jail, doesn't like the clothes he was given. So he takes off said clothes, starts to walk home naked. Witnesses call police, who arrest the man and take him to jail.

Mets win Subway Series
Here's a fun stat - Jose Reyes has scored a run in each of the last 13 Mets wins.
Actual conversation from the 7 train after Sunday's 3-1 Mets victory:
10 year old kid: Yankees Rule! Mets Stink!
Much older passenger: Scoreboard!
10 year old kid: Yankees won two out of three
Much Older passenger: no, they split--
10 Year old kid: --if you don't count the game on Friday, which was really from May.
Other passenger: But the Mets swept at Yankee Stadium
10 Year old kid: yeah they did but Yankees won 2 out of three at Shea.
Other passenger: So the Mets won the Subway series 4 out of 6.
10 year old kid: Yankees Rule! Mets Stink!

Tiger's Big Day
It took 19 extra holes, but Tiger Woods won the U.S. Open. A day later he announced he was having season-ending knee surgery. That means he won the U.S. Open with a broken leg. And that's just crazy.

Employee Who Updated Russert's Wikipedia Page Fired
When Tim Russert died, the first place I saw the news (after hearing rumors fly for about an hour) was Wikipedia. The page simply said "Tim Russert (May 7, 1950 - June 13, 2008) Of course, it was 3:30 on June 13, 2008 when I saw it, and the mainstream news media had yet to break the news. It's possible Russert's family didn't know before that was posted. I thought there had to be a b-movie plot in there somewhere - "a man changes his ways after wikipedia says he's going to die the next day." Turns out - a junior-level employee at a company that provides web services to NBC posted to Wikipedia, thinking the news was already public knowledge. Oops.
I'll take "things that can get you fired very quickly for $200, Alex..."

Hardee Har Har
Two notable passings - one melancholy mash-up headline.
Wilbur Hardee, founder of Hardee's restaurants, died June 20, at the age of 89. Of course, West of the Rockies, he was known as Wilbur Carl's Jr.

Hardee opened his first burger stand in 1960. There are now nearly 2,000 Hardee's restaurants nationwide.

And comedian and wordsmith George Carlin died last week. I saw this particularly negative obituary of him in a Nova Scotia newspaper by Peter Duffy, an article I'm sure Carlin would have had a good chuckle at, and clearly said something like "this guy doesn't get it," and turned his words against him. Here's my favorite paragraph:

He was probably best known for his Seven Words You Can’t Say on Television routine. Two of these words involved bodily functions; two were slang names for parts of the female anatomy; one was an Anglo-Saxon word for the sex act and the remaining two were insults involving derivatives of it.

Let me help you, Mr Duffy:
Two of these words involved bodily functions - shit and piss
two were slang names for parts of the female anatomy - tits and cunt
one was an Anglo-Saxon word for the sex act - fuck
and the remaining two were insults involving derivatives of it - motherfucker, and...well, the 7th word is "cocksucker," which isn't a derivative of "fuck", so he's wrong. Which makes his indignation even funnier.

The right to arm bears?
Makes about as much sense as the Supreme Court decision that will put more handguns on the streets of Washington, D.C. and other crime-ridden areas. The court says individuals have the right to defend themselves with assault rifles and such. I think they're misreading the sentence:

"A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

I'm all in favor of the Constitution, but can't we agree that some of the language is obsolete? BrookLyn GaL and I had a discussion about the 3rd amendment:

"No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law."

This was drafted because American colonists were forced to house British soldiers during the French and Indian War, and pretty much doesn't apply to today's army at all. It's pretty obsolete, but doesn't really garner much discussion. We decided it can stay in the Constitution, because what if the country went under martial law or something and the army forced you to let a soldier crash on your couch and then required you to feed him/her? That would be terribly inconvenient.

Dog loses $10 Million
a year ago, Leona Helmsley died and left $12 million, the largest portion of her inheritance, to her dog Trouble (instead of to her family or her charitable fund or countless other worthier causes). A judge reduced the amount to $2 million last week, saying that is enough money to fund the highest, most luxurious level of care for 10 years - double the dog's life expectancy. The judge said the other $10 million should go to charity. Trouble currently lives in Florida with the General Manager of the Helmsley Sandcastle Hotel. He estimates the annual care costs at $190,000, including his own $60,000 guardian fee and $100,000 for round-the-clock security.

Martha Stewart Visa Denied
Because of her criminal history and subsequent jail time, lifestyle guru Martha Stewart was barred entrance the United Kingdom. The government says they don't want redecorating the Houses of Parliament or recklessly improving the quality of British cuisine.

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