• A 10-year-old girl, nicknamed Stuffy, lived in Boonton, New Jersey, where she was a fan of the New York Giants football team. She was especially a fan of Y.A. Tittle and was a member of his fan club. At a party she gave for some of the other young members of the fan club, she became so excited that she called Giants Stadium and asked to speak to Mr. Tittle. Sure enough, she was connected with a man who said that he was Y.A. Tittle and talked to her for a while. But later, she wondered whether the man was really Mr. Tittle. A few days later, Stuffy’s father took her and her younger sister to a department store where Mr. Tittle was appearing. The younger sister asked Mr. Tittle, “Did you really talk on the phone to Stuffy, my sister?” Mr. Tittle winked and asked, “You mean Stuffy of the Boonton Fan Club?”
• Young figure skaters are naturally awed when they find themselves in the presence of the current world champions. Ice dancers Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean were certainly awed when they first competed against the world champions, and after Torvill and Dean became world champions, a young Paul Duchesnay, who skated with Isabelle, his sister, was awed to find himself rooming with Mr. Dean in Oberstdorf, Germany. The morning after discovering he was rooming with the current world champion, Mr. Duchesnay heard Mr. Dean arise, but he stayed in bed. Later, he admitted to Mr. Dean, “I just didn’t dare move until you’d gone!”
• Auburn University football player Bo Jackson once rear-ended a car, an accident that made the driver of the other car very irate. She told Mr. Jackson that the accident was his fault and that he was a terrible driver. However, as soon as she heard his name, she asked, “Are you the Bo Jackson who plays for Auburn?” He admitted that he was, and she immediately asked, “Are you all right?” As an Auburn football fan, she wanted to make sure that Mr. Jackson could play against the University of Texas. In fact, before the game, she sent Mr. Jackson a note: “Smash Texas like you smashed my car.”
• Some of the most popular men’s gymnasts have little teenage fans asking for their autographs. After a gymnastics meet, some young girls were waiting around, hoping that Kurt Thomas would sign their autograph books for them. One asked a young woman, “Do you think Kurt will sign my book?” She replied, “Well, I don’t know. He’s awfully tired and would probably like to get going.” The fan then asked, “How do you know so much? Who do you think you are, his mother or something?” The young woman, named Beth, replied, “No, I’m his wife.”
• Visiting instructor Rabbi Henry E. Kagan played baseball at a Methodist school in West Virginia in a game pitting the faculty versus the students. With his faculty team one run behind, he was on third. The batter hit a single, and Rabbi Kagan ran for home plate. As he ran, he heard an excited fan shouting, “Come on, Rabbi! Bring home the bacon!” Everyone enjoyed a laugh, and Rabbi Kagan said, “The incident did more than teaching or preaching to instill the idea of brotherhood.”
• Some people don’t think that Olympic gold medal-winning gymnast Shannon Miller is really Shannon Miller when they unexpectedly see her at the airport or some place other than a gymnasium. One guy asked her, “If you’re really Shannon Miller, what was your score on the balance beam at the Olympics finals?” Since she doesn’t pay any attention to her scores (and seldom watches programs featuring her performing gymnastics), she was forced to say, “I don’t have a clue.”
• Michael Jordan was an amazingly popular basketball player for the Chicago Bulls. At home games, attendance rose by 87 percent the first year he played for the Bulls. He was also popular in other cities. Sometimes, fans of other teams would boo their own players when they fouled Mr. Jordan as he drove to the basket — a foul meant that the fans missed seeing Mr. Jordan dunk the basketball.
© Copyright Bruce D. Bruce; All Rights Reserved
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BRUCE'S RECOMMENDATION OF BANDCAMP MUSIC
Music: "Alles Eskaliert" [“Everything Escalates”]
Artist: Pele Caster
Artist Location: Bochum, Germany
Info: German Indierock from the Rhine-Ruhr metropolitan area.
Stefan “Pele” Götzer: vocals and guitar
Amelie Struck: piano and vocals
Natalie Bolinksi: violin
Michael Kaschmer: bass
Marc Rühmeier: drums
Price: €1 [EURO] for track; €6 [EURO] for 5-track album
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Michelle in AZ
Only Two Buckets
Jeannie the Teed-Off Temp
We are all only temporarily able bodied.
that Mad Cat, JD
In The Chaos Household
Next Monday the epage will have been around for 20 years.
Celebrates At 25
‘The Daily Show’
Long before there was fake news, there was a fake news show.
Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” launched 25 years ago this month, dedicated to skewering journalism and warning viewers about how they take in their news.
“We became the watchdogs of the watchdog,” said co-creator Lizz Winstead. “Nobody had done it before so the world was our oyster.”
Over the years, “The Daily Show” — first hosted by Craig Kilborn, then Jon Stewart and now Trevor Noah — has skewered the left and right by making the media a character and playing it absolutely straight, no matter how ridiculous.
Co-creator Madeleine Smithberg explains their a-ha moment: “What if we pretend we are them? And the more serious we act, the absolute more ridiculous we can be? We can satirize the news industry along with the news.”
Winstead and Smithberg are celebrating the silver anniversary on Monday with a 90-minute streaming celebration that will include special guests, a Q&A and appearances from the first correspondents: A. Whitney Brown, Beth Littleford and Brian Unger. Proceeds will benefit Abortion Access Front.
‘The Daily Show’
The Fox Corporation has instituted a strict COVID-19 policy that includes a vaccine passport, allowing only the company's fully-vaccinated employees to work in their offices without wearing a mask or social distancing.
But a slew of the parent company's Fox News personalities, particularly two of its highest-paid and most influential primetime hosts, have railed against exactly this kind of vaccination policy, also known as a "vaccine passport."
Beyond increased vaccine hesitancy among conservative men - a major share of the network's audience - polling shows Fox News viewers are less likely to say they have gotten or plan on getting the vaccine compared to the general population.
Many of the network's daytime anchors have said on-air that they've gotten vaccinated and have encouraged viewers to do the same, but in primetime, hosts Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham have both frequently dismissed the science around the vaccine and featured guests making misleading and false claims about the shots' high level of efficacy.
Carlson, Fox's top rated host and the centerpiece of its growing streaming service, has compared vaccine passports to "Jim Crow" racial segregation laws and likened asking someone about their vaccination status to asking them whether they've been infected with HIV or what their favorite sex positions are.
Attorney General Merrick Garland on Monday formally prohibited federal prosecutors from seizing the records of journalists in leak investigations, with limited exceptions, reversing years of department policy.
The new policy largely codifies the commitment Garland made in June, when he said the Justice Department would abandon the practice of seizing reporters’ records as part of efforts to uncover confidential sources. It aims to resolve a politically thorny issue that has long vexed Justice Department prosecutors trying to weigh the media’s First Amendment rights against the government’s desire to protect classified information.
“The United States has, of course, an important national interest in protecting national security information against unauthorized disclosure,” Garland wrote in his memo. “But a balancing test may fail to properly weight the important national interest in protecting journalists from compelled disclosure of information revealing their sources, sources they need to apprise the American people of the workings of their government.”
The memo makes clear that federal prosecutors can, in some cases, obtain journalists’ records. Those exceptions include if the reporters are suspected of working for agents of a foreign power or terrorist organizations, if they are under investigation for unrelated activities or if they obtained their information through criminal methods like breaking and entering. There are also exceptions for situations with imminent risks, like kidnappings or crimes against children.
Garland was moved to act following an outcry over revelations that the department during the Trump administration had obtained records belonging to journalists at The Washington Post, CNN and The New York Times as part of investigations into who had disclosed government secrets related to the Russia investigation and other national security matters.
Britt McHenry is departing Fox News after reaching a settlement with the network over her sexual harassment claim against the network and fellow contributor Tyrus.
McHenry filed the lawsuit in December, 2019, claiming that Tyrus, whose real name is George Murdoch, engaged in inappropriate behavior that included sexually charged text messages.
The parties filed a stipulation for voluntary dismissal of the case on Monday in federal court.
McHenry was a commentator on Fox Nation and had hosted a show on the streaming service, Un-PC, for a time along with Tyrus, but their co-hosting ended in 2019. She claimed that Tyrus created an “abusive and hostile work environment” for her on the set, including a February 22 incident in which he lashed out at her on the show. In addition to the text messages, McHenry claims that Murdoch grabbed her in a forceful manner. According to her lawsuit, the network did not take action despite her complaints to executives and to human resources.
Fox News at the time said that the “allegations have been fully investigated and we are confident our actions will be deemed entirely appropriate in litigation. We expect all of her claims to be dismissed.”
DOJ OK With Perjury
The U.S. Justice Department declined to prosecute the Trump administration's Commerce Department chief Wilbur Ross (R-Lock Him Up) after the department's inspector general's office found he misrepresented the full rationale for seeking to reinstate a citizenship question in the 2020 U.S. Census in congressional testimony, according to a letter made public Monday.
The July 15 letter from Commerce Department Inspector General Peggy E. Gustafson addressed to congressional leaders is a response to earlier allegations by U.S. senators that the agencies concealed the "contribution of a political redistricting strategist in the rationale for the addition of a citizenship question."
In June 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court blocked the Trump administration from adding a contentious question asking if people are citizens to the 2020 census because officials gave a “contrived” rationale.
Manhattan-based U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman earlier ruled the Commerce Department’s decision to add the question violated the Administrative Procedure Act.
Furman said evidence showed Ross concealed his true motives for adding the question and that he and his aides had convinced the Justice Department to request a citizenship query.
Judge Lambasts Lawyers
A pair of Colorado lawyers who filed a lawsuit questioning the results of the 2020 election may face disciplinary measures as a federal judge calls them "propaganda" outlets for Donald Trump (R-Lock Him Up).
The lawyers, Gary Fielder and Ernest John Walker, filed a federal lawsuit just before Christmas on behalf of 160 million Americans alleging that a vast conspiracy to steal the 2020 election from Mr Trump occurred, blaming Dominion Voting Systems, Facebook and its founder Mark Zuckerberg, his wife Priscilla Chan, and various elected officials from four states for the alleged malfeasance.
The lawyers sought $160bn in damages, according to a report in The Washington Post.
The judge repeatedly questioned the attorneys about how much - if any - independent investigation they conducted to confirm that Mr Trump's claims were legitimate, noting that even members of the former president's administration like former Attorney General William Barr had publicly confirmed there was no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election.
The pair tried to pass off their lawsuit as a public service, arguing that they saw the potential for an insurrection brewing ahead of 6 January, and thought their case would be a sort of pressure valve release to show those who questioned the 2020 election that their concerns were being heard.
ER Doctor Blames
A leading emergency room doctor has slammed Fox News for spreading dangerous anti-vaccine disinformation that he says is fuelling Covid denialism and causing sick patients to refuse treatment.
In an opinion piece for NBCNews.com, Dr Rob Davidson said he blamed “Fox News and other right-wing media outlets for poisoning the minds of millions of Americans with the deceptive propaganda they spray into living rooms 24/7”.
Dr Davidson, an ER physician from western Michigan and also the executive director of the Committee to Protect Health Care, singled out Fox primetime hosts Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity for causing the current surge in cases of the Covid-19 Delta variant.
He said patients who presented with severe Covid-19 symptoms at his hospital were often declining treatment, and would not even take basic steps to protect their family members from infection such as self-isolating or wearing a mask.
“When we tell some patients and their family of a positive Covid-19 diagnosis, the response we get too many times is anger, outrage or denial,” Mr Davidson wrote.
Winter Treat - Yak Poop
Pikas living at high altitudes in Asia eat yak poop to help them survive winter, a new study has found.
The small, rabbit-like animals, often compared to Pokémon’s Pikachu character, can't hibernate through winter when food is scarce, so they slow their metabolism and eat yak poop to get by on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, where temperatures fall to minus 22 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 30 degrees Celsius).
Animals adopt all sorts of unexpected strategies to survive, study first author John Speakman, a biology professor at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland and the Chinese Academy of Sciences in China, told Live Science in an email.
"Lots of animals including rabbits and pika eat their own feces," Speakman said. Such poop eating, or coprophagy, can help animals absorb nutrients they couldn't digest initially from their food, Live Science previously reported. "But eating the feces of other species is relatively rare," he added.
Pikas are a group of small mammals found in North America and Asia. They are often associated with Pikachu the Pokémon which has a similar name — although Pikachu's original design was actually inspired by a squirrel, according to the video game website Kotaku.