Top 10 Chains in Customer Satisfaction:
A new survey by Sandelman and Associates, a market research and consumer-trends firm, shows that customers mostly prefer regional or smaller national fast food and chain restaurants to gigantic soul-destroying megafood joints like McDonald's. Top 10 Chains in Customer Satisfaction:
IN AND OUT IS THE BEST! Here is a list of their secret menu.
- In-N-Out Burger, Irvine, Calif., 60%
- Raising Cane's, Baton Rouge, La., 59%
- Giordano's Pizza, Chicago, 56%
- Chick-fil-A, Atlanta, 55%
- Panera Bread, St. Louis, 54%
- Chipotle, Denver, 52%
- Pei Wei, Scottsdale, Ariz., 51%
- Firehouse Subs, Jacksonville, Fla., 51%
- Taco Tote, El Paso, Texas, 50%
- Qdoba, Wheat Ridge, Colo., 49%
The Hidden In-N-Out Burger (aka In and Out Burger) - The Most Accurate Secret Menu On The Web
In-N-Out Burger has a secret unpublished menu for insiders who are in-the-know. Next time you're at In-N-Out (i.e. tomorrow . . . or maybe tonight), order a bag of these off-the-menu specials:
"3-by-3" = three meat patties and three slices of cheese.
"4-by-4" = four meat patties and four slices of cheese.
"2-by-4" = two meat patties and four slices of cheese.
*Note: You may get a burger with the exact number of meat patties or cheese slices you want (up to 4x4). Just tell the In-N-Out Burger cashier how many meat patties and how much cheese you want and that is what you'll get! For instance, if you want 4 pieces of meat and 3 pieces of cheese tell them you want a "4-by-3."
"Double Meat" = like a Double Double without cheese.
"3 by Meat" = three meat patties and no cheese.
"Animal Style" = the meat is cooked and fried with mustard and then pickles are added, extra spread and grilled onions are added.
"Animal Style Fries" = fries with cheese, spread, grilled onions and pickles (if you ask for them).
"Protein Style" = for all you low-carbohydrate dieters, this is a burger with no bun (wrapped in lettuce).
"Flying Dutchman" = two meat patties, two slices of melted cheese and nothing else - not even a bun!
Fries "Well-Done" = extra crispy fries . . . even better than the regular!
Fries "Light" = opposite of fries well-done, more raw than most people like 'em
"Grilled Cheese" = no meat, just melted cheese, tomato, lettuce and spread on a bun.
"Veggie Burger" = burger without the patty or cheese. Sometimes we call this the "Wish Burger."
"Neapolitan" Shake = strawberry, vanilla and chocolate mixed together.
The friendly employees of In-N-Out Burger will take your special order without question, if you use the right terminology. The printed receipt will have your special request typed on it just as we said it.
Try it! Your friends will be amazed.
Just 3 questions and the answers will surprise you. This is fun to do, but you have to follow the instructions very closely. Do not cheat. Get pencil and paper to write your answers as you go along. Put the following 5 animals in the order of your preference:
Write one word that describes each one of the following:
Think of someone (who also knows you and is important to you) that you can relate them to the following colors. (Please do not repeat your answer twice. Name just one person for each color.)
This will define your priorities in your life.
- Cow: signifies "career"
- Tiger signifies "pride"
- Sheep signifies "love"
- Horse signifies "family"
- Pig signifies "money"
- Your description of dog implies "your own personality"
- Your description of cat implies the "personality of your partner"
- Your description of rat implies the "personality of your enemies"
- Your description of coffee is how you interpret "sex"
- Your description of the sea implies "your own life"
- Yellow: Someone you will never forget
- Orange: Someone you consider your true friend
- Red: Someone that you really love
- White: Your twin soul
- Green: Someone that you will remember for the rest of your life.
Men's Health asked: Which famous body part would you most like to have?
- 41% said Michelangelo's David's abs
- 28% said Albert Einstein's brain
- 17% said Dirk Diggler's unit
- 7% said Hulk Hogan's arms
- 6% said Lance Armstrong's legs
TILL DEATH DO US PART....NOT!
According to a report from the Census Bureau, women and men who married in the late 1970s had a less than 50% chance of still being married 25 years later. Check out these numbers:
- 80% of first marriages that took place in the late 1950s lasted at least 15 years.
- Only 61% of first marriages from the 1980s were still going strong 15 years later.
- 70% of Americans married in the 1950s celebrated a 25th wedding anniversary.
- Only 48% of people married in the 1970s kept the marriage together for 25 years.
- On average, people who marry again typically do so in about three-and-a-half years.
Med students are among those most sought after for marriage. Yes, the top job that attracts lovers is a doctor, according to an international survey by Synovate, the market research arm of Aegis Group. On the other hand, actors, musicians, journalists and advertisers are among those whom people trust the least and are the least likely professions from which to choose a mate. The profession ranked the highest were doctors (16%), education (14%) and science % technology (10%). Ranked the lowest for marriage material were retail (1%), media and marketing (2%) and entertainers (3%).
THANKS FOR THE GREAT CALLS THIS MORNING!
Thank you for all the phone calls this morning on your favorite Super Bowl commercials. I did my best to find as many as I could. Check them out below and GO CARDINALS!!!
Budweiser Clydesdale Streaker Super Bowl XL Commercial
1995 Super Bowl ad bud frogs
Bud Lizards 1997 Superbowl Sequence
Miller High Life 1-second ads that didn't make the cut
Top Ten Super Bowl Ads 2008 - Commercials from Super Bowl 42
K-Flag Country Music Update
FAITH HILL GEARS UP FOR SUPER BOWL PERFORMANCE
Faith Hill is gearing up to sing "America the Beautiful" at the Super Bowl this Sunday when the Arizona Cardinals take on the Pittsburgh Steelers in Tampa, Florida. Hill is expected to perform prior to the official kickoff at 4:20 p.m. Hill is no stranger to the Super Bowl. She sang the national anthem back in 2000 in Atlanta. Still -- Hill tells the NFL Network that she's anxious about this weekend's performance:
"It's definitely the biggest stage. It's the biggest one by far. The nerves are huge. I have to say when I sang the national anthem, I never had experienced anything like that before. I thought I was cool and I'd be fine. And right before I walked out it was terrifying. I thought that I would never put myself in that position again, and here I am back."
Hill tells the NFL Network she was honored to get the call to perform:
"I couldn't refuse it. I love the NFL. They have been so generous to me. And it's just the greatest game in the world. And to sing America the Beautiful, I'm just honored to be back. And I'm just excited."
* The only other artists who have sung "America the Beautiful" before a Super Bowl are Vikki Carr (Super Bowl XI), Ray Charles (Super Bowl XXXV) and Alicia Keys (Super Bowl XXXIX).
KENNY CHESNEY SUFFERS FOR HIS FAME
Kenny Chesney bought a $5.7 million home in Key West, Florida last year, but has since changed his mind about moving in. Apparently news that the superstar would be living on the island at least some of the time has created such a frenzy that Chesney has opted to put the house back on the market.
He issued a statement saying, "It's funny how you can be moving out before you even move in. I may've been naive to think I could just go down to the Keys and disappear, because that was the idea. I wanted to find a place where I could just be, and thought I'd found it. But with all the buzz since we signed the papers, the last thing I want to do to someplace I love as much as Key West is change the dynamics, especially for the locals who have been so good to me, so, I'm stopping the insanity before it begins. The 'For Sale' sign is back up, and I'm just not going to be able to take possession of the house."
* The house is nearly 7,000 square feet and boasts five bedrooms and seven full baths.
* Chesney is still trying to sell a multi-million dollar mansion he purchased in Malibu, California last year.
* His other properties include homes in the U.S. Virgin Islands and in Franklin, Tennessee.
MONTGOMERY GENTRY MEMBER PLANS FOR QUIET SUPER BOWL
It looks like a low-key Super Bowl Sunday (February 1st) for Montgomery Gentry's Troy Gentry. The singer tells us his plans started off big but will end up pretty tame.
"We've talked about having a party at our house. (We've) talked about going to parties, and it's dwindled down now to we may just quietly sit home with the family, order pizza and watch football for awhile and go to bed. I mean, there's not a whole lot of interest in it for me this year with the Titans being gone, the Eagles are out of it. If I'm pulling for anybody this year I'm kind of pulling for the Cardinals."
Gentry says the Cardinals have become his friend and fellow singer Blake Shelton's favorite team. According to Gentry, Shelton wasn't really into NFL football until a friend took the time to explain the game to him.
"The reason he got into it is one night he sat in front of the TV with a buddy of his, and one of the teams that were on was the Cardinals, and he was explaining the game to him about NFL watching the Cardinals play, so that kind of became his team, so I'm kind of rootin' for the Cardinals now and pulling for Blake."
* The Super Bowl game between the Cardinals and the Steelers will air live on NBC. Kick off is at 4:28 p.m.
* In other Montgomery Gentry news, the duo will host the inaugural "Country on the Beach" event to benefit the T.J. Martell Foundation. The all-inclusive trip will take place from December 3rd through the 6th a the Beach Palace Resort in Cancun, Mexico. The trip will offer fans such activities as local tours, celebrity auctions, volleyball, karaoke, a poolside/Oceanside clambake, celebrity bartending, spa experiences, water sports, a celebrity golf tournament at the Riviera Cancun Golf Resort, and private receptions and performances by Montgomery Gentry and special guests.
* For more information or to make reservations log onto travelininc.com or call (888) 473-8856.
DIERKS BENTLEY ALBUM SEES EARLY RELEASE ON MYSPACE
Dierks Bentley's brand new album, Feel That Fire, began streaming at myspace.com on Thursday (January 29th). This is the first country album premiere for MySpace Music. Bentley's album won't officially be released until Tuesday (February 3rd).
* Bentley said, "I know everybody always says it, but I REALLY mean it when I say that this is the best album I've ever made...we came off the road for the first time in six years and took our time to make sure it was just right."
* Feel That Fire is Bentley's fourth album.
* His self-titled debut CD was released in 2003.
* Bentley has charted five Number One hits since then.
JAKE OWEN PROVES HE'S NO FLASH IN THE PAN
The debut single from Jake Owen's upcoming album is doing for the singer what he had hoped -- giving him an identity. Owen co-wrote the song, which he tells us is helping fans to put a name with a face and a voice.
"I thought that this song for sure would be the song that kind of takes me from being a guy that has had a few hits to kind of people like really recognizing who I am cause I don't think I really got to showcase who I was as a singer. I think this song really lets me sing. I love to sing. It's what I moved to town for."
Owen says the song is also proving that despite his previous success with "Yee Haw" and "Startin' With Me," he's no one-hit wonder, so to speak.
"It's a well, simply-written song. The music's just kind of identifiable. It was the first time I've gone to radio with a song where they were like, 'Okay, we believe you now.' They kind of understood that I wasn't just like gonna bring 'em 'Yee Haw' and then never talk to 'em or see 'em ever again because I was here and gone."
* Owen debuted "Don't Think I Can't Love You" last June during CMA Music Festival in Nashville before a live audience at LP Field.
* His new album, Easy Does It, will be released on February 24th.
* "Don't Think I Can't Love You" is a Top 15 hit on the country charts.
JESSICA SIMPSON THANKS FANS FOR THEIR SUPPORT
Jessica Simpson alluded to the media's recent focus on her weight during a performance in Charlottesville, Virginia, Thursday night, telling the crowd, "Please remember, no matter what you go through in life, somebody else might have it harder. I feel like in our world today we focus on so many things that are completely pointless." While never mentioning the recent media coverage specifically, she did thank the fans for their support.
* Simpson opened for Rascal Flatts at the University of Virginia's John Paul Jones Arena.
* Simpson wore black pants, a V-neck T-shirt and a hip-length black jacket.
ALISON KRAUSS, KID ROCK ADDED TO GRAMMY PERFORMERS
Alison Krauss & Robert Plant, along with Kid Rock, are among the latest additions to the lineup of performers at the Grammy Awards. Previously announced performers include Kenny Chesney, Carrie Underwood, Coldplay, Jennifer Hudson, the Jonas Brothers, Paul McCartney, Katy Perry, T.I., Justin Timberlake, Jay-Z and Kanye West.
* The 51st annual Grammy Awards will take place on February 8th at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. The show will air live on CBS beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET.
* Krauss and Plant together have five Grammy nominations this year -- Album of the Year and Best Contemporary Folk/Americana Album for Raising Sand, Record of the Year for "Please Read The Letter," Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals for "Rich Woman," and Best Country Collaboration With Vocals for "Killing The Blues."
* Underwood is nominated for Best Country Female Vocal Performance for "Last Name."
* Chesney is up for Best Country Collaboration with Vocals for "Shiftwork" with George Strait.
Water Cooler Talk
# Men who are more sexually active in their 20s and 30s could face a far higher risk of developing prostate cancer later in life, according to a new study from researchers at Britain's Nottingham University.
# Kim Manners, the director and producer of "The X-Files" died on January 25 in Los Angeles of complications from lung cancer. He was 58.
# Elisabeth Hasselbeck of "The View" announced Thursday that she's pregnant with her third child, due in August.
# British singer-songwriter John Martyn, whose songs were covered by the likes of Eric Clapton, died Thursday. He was 60.
# The stunt man for Daniel Radcliffe in all those Harry Potter movies was injured this week on the set of another movie from an explosion.
# Michelle Obama will join her husband at Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum in March, at the Washington, DC, location.
# Now Donny Osmond says he won't be on "Dancing with the Stars" this spring.
# James Brady, a longtime celebrity columnist for Parade magazine, died Monday at age 80.
# The 45th anniversary edition of Mary Poppins is out this week on DVD. Just a spoonful of bonus features.
# Joan Rivers has two new books coming out this year, including a "tell-all" about her many cosmetic surgery procedures.
# Drew Barrymore says she's single because she can't find a guy that deserves her.
Are you ready for the Super Bowl? Here's your Friday Sports!
(AP) - Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt says practice Thursday was "really good" for the NFC Champions as they get ready for the Super Bowl Sunday. Whisenhunt watched running back J.J. Arrington go through a limited workout for the second straight day. Arrington missed all of last week's practices with a sore right knee.
Super Bowl (AP) - The Phoenix Suns were throttled last night by the San Antonio Spurs. Manu Ginobili made 18 free throws without a miss and finished with 30 points, and Tony Parker added 26 points in the Spurs' 114-104 victory. Amare Stoudemire led the Suns with 28 points and 10 rebounds. (AP) - Shaquille O'Neal has been named to the NBA All-Star game for the 15th time after being snubbed last year. O'Neal and Suns teammate Amare Stoudemire are Western Conference reserves for the Feb. 15 game at Phoenix. (AP) - Lucas Glover and James Nitties are clubhouse co-leaders through 18 holes of the PGA's FBR Open in Scottsdale. Glover and Nitties shot 6-under-par 65s on the TPC course for a one-stroke edge over Charley Hoffman and David Berganio, Jr. Play was called by darkness with nine players still on the course. (AP) - Top-ranked Rafael Nadal is taking on fellow Spaniard Fernando Verdasco for a berth in the Australian Open final. Roger Federer already advanced to the final with a straight-sets win over Andy Roddick a day ago. NBA Thursday's Games Orlando 99, Cleveland 88 San Antonio 114, Phoenix 104 Friday's Games Miami at Indiana, Milwaukee at Toronto, Boston at Detroit, Washington at Philadelphia, New Jersey at Atlanta, L.A. Clippers at Cleveland, L.A. Lakers at Minnesota, Charlotte at Denver, Oklahoma City at Utah, Golden State at New Orleans, Chicago at Sacramento, NHL Thursday's Games New Jersey 4, Boston 3, OT Carolina 3, Tampa Bay 2 N.Y. Islanders 5, Atlanta 4 Florida 5, Montreal 1 Dallas 4, Detroit 2 Ottawa 3, St. Louis 1 Toronto 7, Colorado 4 San Jose 2, Phoenix 0 Los Angeles 5, Chicago 2 Friday's Games Ottawa at Columbus, Pittsburgh at New Jersey, Philadelphia at Tampa Bay, Minnesota at Edmonton, Nashville at Calgary, Top 25 Men's Basketball Thursday's Games ( 9) Michigan St. 71 Iowa 56 (12) Clemson 86 Virginia Tech 82 Washington St. 65 (14) Arizona St. 55 (17) UCLA 81 California 66 Minnesota 59 (19) Illinois 36 (20) Gonzaga 69 (22) Saint Mary's, Calif. 62 Arizona 106 (23) Washington 97 Friday (13) Butler vs. Valparaiso, 7 p.m. Top-25 Women's College Basketball Thursday's Games (18) Florida St. 82 ( 3) Duke 75, OT Georgia 67 ( 5) Auburn 58 ( 7) California 64 UCLA 48 ( 9) Stanford 81 Southern Cal 53 (10) North Carolina 77 Wake Forest 66 (12) Florida 74 Kentucky 59 (13) Tennessee 60 Mississippi 59 (15) Ohio St. 52 Michigan 44 (20) Vanderbilt 72 Arkansas 61, OT Friday ( 8) Maryland at (19) Virginia, 7 p.m. (21) Pittsburgh vs. Marquette, 7 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 1
Arizona vs. Pittsburgh, 4 p.m.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
Arizona Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt says the team is trying to stick to its regular practice routine at the Buccaneers' practice facility, despite the unusual nature of Super Bowl week. He says the Cards' practice tempo is as good as it's been all season.
Free agent pitcher Jon Garland and the Arizona Diamondbacks have reached a preliminary agreement on a one-year contract that includes a club option for 2010. The deal guarantees the right-hander about $7 million. Last year, Garland went 14-8 with a 4.90 ERA for the Los Angeles Angels, his highest ERA in a full season.
Tonight's pro sports schedule has the Phoenix Suns playing the San Antonio Spurs at US Airways Center and the Phoenix Coyotes visiting the San Jose Sharks. In Pac-10 college basketball tonight: No. 14 Arizona State will host Washington State and Arizona will be at home against Washington.
Last night in the NBA...
Indiana 107, Milwaukee 99
Toronto 107, New Jersey 106
Boston 119, Sacramento 100
New York 112, Atlanta 104
Miami 93, Washington 71
Detroit 98, Minnesota 89
New Orleans 94, Denver 81
Oklahoma City 114, Memphis 102, OT
Philadelphia 95, Houston 93
Dallas 117, Golden State 93
Portland 88, Charlotte 74
Chicago 95, L.A. Clippers 75
Last night in the NHL...
Pittsburgh 6, N.Y. Rangers 2
Calgary 5, Buffalo 2
Chicago 3, Anaheim 2
Nashville 5, Vancouver 3
This is the opening day of play the 2009 FBR Open. Former Arizona State star Phil Mickelson will be making his 2009 PGA Tour debut in the tournament, which is being played at the TPC Scottsdale.
Second seed Serena Williams will go for her fourth Australian Open title when she takes on No. 3 Dinara Safina in the final. Williams beat Elena Dementieva 6-3, 6-4 to earn the right to face Safina, who knocked off Vera Zvonareva 6-3, 7-6. On the men's side, Roger Federer advances to the final after beating Andy Roddick 6-2, 7-5, 7-5.
Duke has been beaten just two days after becoming the top team in the AP men's basketball poll, falling at No. 6 Wake Forest 70-68. The Demon Deacons blew a 13-point lead late in the game before James Johnson hit a tiebreaking layup with 0.8 seconds left.
Football coach Bobby Bowden has signed a one-year contract to coach a 34th season at Florida State. FSU offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher must replace Bowden by January 2011 or the school will owe him $5 million. Bowden's 382 career coaching wins are one fewer than Penn State's Joe Paterno, the all-time leader among major college coaches.
The Chicago Cubs have added a veteran reliever, acquiring right-hander Aaron Heilman from the Seattle Mariners for utilityman Ronny Cedeno and left-hander Garrett Olson. Heilman was traded to the Mariners in December after going 3-and-8 with a 5.21 ERA in 78 games for the New York Mets last year. Cedeno hit .269 in 99 games for Chicago in 2008 while Olson went 9-10 with a 6.65 ERA for Baltimore.
Twenty federal agents raided the home of the mother-in-law of Barry Bonds' personal trainer on Wednesday. Madeleine Gestas and her daughter Nicole Anderson, the trainer's wife, are the target of a tax investigation that the lawyer for Greg Anderson said is aimed at pressuring the trainer to testify at Bonds' upcoming trial.
JENNIFER ANISTON HAS MOST DESIRED CELEB BODY: Jennifer Aniston bumped Gisele Bundchen to claim the top spot on the 12th annual "Famed Hottest Looks" list compiled by the co-directors of The Beverly Hills Institute of Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgery. According to the majority of their clients, Aniston has the most desired female figure, followed by Bundchen and Jessica Biel. The most sought-after celeb lips are Angelina Jolie while those with skin complexion in mind hope to emulate Cate Blanchett. Among the hottest heads of hair in Hollywood are the locks belonging to Isla Fisher, Blake Lively and Amanda Seyfried.
ANGELINA JOLIE WORE BACKWARDS DRESS TO SAG AWARDS: Angelina Jolie's stylist confirmed blog reports that the superstar wore her dress backwards at Sunday's (January 25th) SAG Awards. Jen Radle told Usmagazine.com that Jolie purposely turned around the dress -- which was Azria's spring 2009 collection -- to make it "more blouson." The plunging would-be neckline also allowed the mother-of-six to show off her tattoos.
DEBBIE MATENOPOULOS DEFENDS SELF AGAINST ESTRANGED HUSBAND'S CLAIMS: Debbie Matenopoulos is denying her estranged husband's claims that she's paying for nothing while living in their multimillion-dollar Los Angeles home. Jay Faires, who filed for divorce from the E! host last November, filed court papers seeking spousal support, claiming Matenopoulos "continuously lived beyond" their means during the five-year marriage. She told People magazine, "I am incredibly offended by these gross accusations and false claims that have no merit. I am very proud to say, not only do I currently pay my own expenses, I also did so for the entire duration of our marriage." A hearing on the matter is scheduled for February 23rd.
NEW MAN FOR PAMELA ANDERSON: Pamela Anderson's latest man is reportedly a scuba diver that she met in the Malibu trailer park she's been staying in until work is completed on her home. A source told Us magazine, "She is more in love than I have ever seen her before. He's a totally moral, nice, normal guy." The couple met when 42-year-old Jamie Padgett picked Anderson up in his golf cart and offered her a ride to the beach.
BART SIMPSON VOICE USES CHARACTER TO PROMOTE SCIENTOLOGY EVENT: Nancy Cartwright, who voices Bart on the animated Fox hit, The Simpsons, is using the character's name and voice to promote an upcoming Hollywood Scientology event in Los Angeles. Cartwright opens the ad by saying, "This is Bart Simpson," before admitting to the joke and identifying herself. Resuming Bart's voice, she announces the event and says, "It's gonna be a blast, man!"
JANE KRAKOWSKI AND AARON SORKIN DATING? 30 Rock star Jane Krakowski and The West Wing creator Aaron Sorkin are reportedly TV's hottest new couple. Star magazine reports in its new issue that the two are dating and buzzfoto.com claims that the pair met up at Beverly Hills High School last Saturday (January 24th) to watch his daughter's basketball game. Afterwards they reportedly went in separate cars to Sorkin's house, where Krakowski appeared to stay for the night.
COSMO'S GUYS YOU THINK YOU SHOULD DATE... BUT SHOULDN'T
- Adrenaline Junkie -- This dude skydives, surfs, runs with the bulls anything for the rush. And he has the sick abs and chiseled arms to prove it. But to keep him happy, you need to be in perpetual motion, too. This guy does not like to sit on his ass and he doesn't like for you to sit on yours either. And it isn't just a phase. In his late 30s, he'll get into marathons, and they'll lead to triathlons and eventually to the Ironman competition. Yeah, that means a trip to Hawaii but instead of chilling on the beach, you'll be cheering him on from the sidelines. Having fun yet?
- Nice Guy With a Chip on His Shoulder -- He'll ridicule the "tools who are trying too hard" with bold clothing choices to seem down-to-earth, but here's his dirty little secret: He spends just as much time picking out his outfit as his more fashion-conscious counterparts do. Under the casual exterior is a calculating killjoy with mom issues. He'll stand at the bar, thinking 'Why is that girl going for that dude over there? One day, she'll come to her senses and get with a nice guy like me!' The truth is, he's so preoccupied with being overlooked that he'd be totally oblivious to your attention.
- Smooth Operator -- He's the type that rolls up to the club in an Escalade and holds court in the VIP section, ordering bottle service all night. Though he got Ds in high school, he now scores A, B, and C cups with entertaining small talk and name-dropping. Yeah, he's a Casanova in a skull cap, it replaced his trucker hat about a year ago. But this lid spells trouble. It takes confidence to pull it off with a straight face, too much confidence. There "is" such a thing. He'll shower you with attention, but beware: You may not be the only chick in that shower.
- Workaholic Hotshot -- This guy is always dressed to the nines, because he's loaded. Simmer down the cash flow comes at a price. He toils until the wee hours, then loosens his tie and parties like there's no tomorrow. Unfortunately, there is tomorrow, and it starts in like three hours. What little time he has for you will be shared with his BlackBerry. The ugly truth: Money is the love of his life, and you're just a mistress or second mistress, since he's probably crunching more than numbers with his secretary. (Cosmopolitan)
THINGS GUYS WISH WOMEN KNEW ABOUT MEN
Shaunti Feldhahn, a syndicated newspaper columnist and author of "For Women Only: What You Need to Know About the Inner Lives of Men," offers these ten things guys wish women knew about men:
- Men would rather feel unloved than inadequate and disrespected
- A man's anger is often a response to feeling disrespected by his wife
- Men are insecure
- Men feel the burden of being the provider for their family
- Men want more sex (duh!)
- Sex means more than sex
- Men struggle with visual temptation
- Men enjoy romance, but doubt their skills to be romantic
- Men care about their wife's appearance
- Men want their wives to know how much they love them
3 Dog Bites and 2 Taser Zaps To Get This Guy!
In Elko, Nevada, a 19-year-old burglary suspect may not be the best criminal in the world, but he's one tough cookie! Sheriff's deputies said the teen had to be zapped with a Taser twice and bitten by a police dog three times before he finally stopped struggling with officers during his arrest. Police responded to a 911 call about a prowler at 3am when they spotted footprints in the snow by the home's doors, windows and even on the top of an air conditioning unit. So they brought out Besmo, the police dog, who caught the scent and led them to the suspect who was sitting in his vehicle and appeared intoxicated. When the guy refused to remove his hands from his sweat shirt pocket and exit the vehicle, the dog was ordered to jump through an open window and help extract him. Deputies pulled him to the ground but he still wouldn't comply so the dog was ordered to bite him again. Still unfazed, the suspect was zapped with a Taser but still wouldn't give up. A third attack by the dog and another blast from the stun gun finally did the trick. He's been charged with attempted burglary, obstructing an officer and destruction of private property. (myway.com)
We Love You Boss. We'll Work For Free! DONT GET ANY IDEAS CRAIG!
Dave Barham must be the best boss in the world. The owner of Mr. B's Pancake House in Muskegon, Michigan, has come on some challenging times as business has declined due to the economic recession. So to help out, lead server Mary VanDam asked co-workers if they might be willing to work one shift without pay to help Dave out. All 17 servers, cooks, busboys, dishwashers, cashiers and hostesses agreed and worked the day shift on January 18 for only tips from customers. VanDam said, "This is a wonderful business. We want to see it succeed." When customers heard about the workers' effort, they tipped a little more. The workers divided the tips equally and each took home $51. VanDam said Barham met his payroll more than once by dipping into his own pockets. (Muskegon Chronicle)
Can you hear me now???
Prolonged use of your cell phone can render you unable to hear consonants like "s," "f," "t," and "z." A study of more than 100 cell phone addicts discovered that those who yak on the device for more than 60 minutes a day can expect to experience hearing loss and, perhaps, become unable to follow conversations. Signs to watch out for include ear warmth and fullness and ringing in the ears. Using ear phones, rather than holding the phone up to your ear, may provide some protection. And if that's not enough, Cosmopolitan reports dialing a handheld device while driving increase the risk of a crash or near crash by nearly three times.
Believe it or not, we spend 70% less time at work...
than our ancestors did a century ago, but our leisure time hasn't increased at all, says a recent National Bureau of Economic Research study. As it turns out, we're devoting more "free" time to education, and we've also upped our housework hours. You might think the advent of appliances and technology would make for fewer hours scrubbing and scouring, but it seems we've gone and raised our spick-and-span standards in reaction, say the study's authors.
May I have a box of Tagalongs please??
It's that time of year when the Girl Scouts are asking you to buy Girl Scout cookies. But this year, if you order that box of Thin Mints, Do-Si-Dos, Tagalongs or Lemon Chalet Creme cookies, you may be in a for a big surprise. They've been downsized. AOL's WalletPop.com reports that a representative for the Girl Scouts blames it on flour prices, which are up 30%, and cocoa prices, which have soared 20%.
K-Flag Country Music News
FAITH HILL MAKES SUPER BOWL HISTORY WITH THIS WEEKEND'S PERFORMANCE
Faith Hill's Super Bowl appearance this weekend will be history-making. She will be the first artist to ever perform both the National Anthem and "America The Beautiful" in the Super Bowl pre-show, in addition to becoming only the fourth artist in Super Bowl history to sing "America The Beautiful." While Hill isn't singing the National Anthem at Sunday's game, she did perform it at the Super Bowl in Atlanta in 1999.
* Hill said, "I love a good football game, but I'm not making any predictions just yet. But the chance to perform this song, especially during these times, is especially meaningful to me. I'm just so grateful to have been given the opportunity."
* As the voice of NBC's Sunday Night Football for the past two years, Hill recorded a new Super Bowl opener in Nashville earlier this month.
* The Super Bowl between the Arizona Cardinals and the Pittsburgh Steelers takes place at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. Kickoff takes place at 4:28 p.m. AZ time. The game airs live on NBC.
DIERKS BENTLEY LIKES BEING ACCESSIBLE TO THE FANS
Dierks Bentley fans will get a chance to know the singer even better during Thursday night's (January 29th) premiere of the GAC special, Feel That Fire. The show follows the singer to his hockey game, his trip to Japan and even inside his Nashville home. Bentley used to turn down opportunities to bring the media into his personal life, but he tells us that these days he's gotten a lot more comfortable with it:
"Yeah, it's a slippery slope. Initially you say no to everything and then you start saying yes to something. 'Okay, we'll do a People magazine thing,' and then they wanna shoot about the baby . . . 'Oh, alright,' then once you do that you're like, 'You know what? Who cares. Come on in, check it out.' I've never overly ridden that public/private line too much. I mean, your house is like, pretty . . . It's like your last kind of thing there, but now it's like it's wide open, which is great. I've always kind of lived that way anyway."
Bentley adds that he's always had an open door policy with his fans:
"I'd like to think I'm one of the more accessible singers to country fans out there in general, the way we do our meet & greets, the way I run the website. It's pretty much wide open. There's no question that's off limits, and I want them to have as much access as they want to have. Even just making this record there's been a lot of behind the scenes stuff that's been available for free on the website, not even the paid part of it. Just go on the front page (and) you can check out how this record was made and a year's worth of footage, so I'm happy to have 'em in there and check it out."
* Dierks Bentley: Feel That Fire airs at 10:00 p.m. ET on GAC.
* Bentley also invites CMT cameras inside his home on the newest installment of CMT Cribs. The show also airs Thursday night at 9:00 p.m. ET.
TAYLOR SWIFT'S EIGHT-WEEK CHART RIDE CONTINUES
Taylor Swift's Fearless album maintains its grip on the top spot on the Billboard 200 album chart for an eighth week. While sales last week dropped slightly, Swift managed to move 63,000 copies of the project, enough to hold off Beyonce, Nickelback and Britney Spears.
* To date, Swift has sold more than two million copies of Fearless.
* The album was released in November of 2008.
MONTGOMERY GENTRY CELEBRATE NUMBER ONE, REACT TO LOSS OF LYNYRD SKYNYRD MEMBER
The latest Number One hit from Montgomery Gentry was the reason for celebration at a party in Nashville on Wednesday afternoon (January 28th). Winter weather in Eddie Montgomery's home state of Kentucky kept the singer from attending the event, but Troy Gentry was on hand to acknowledge the feat.
Montgomery Gentry's last single, "Back When I Knew It All," topped the country charts last summer. "Roll With Me" claimed the Number One spot late last year, marking a first for the duo, as Gentry tells us:
"You know, this is another mile marker in Montgomery Gentry history as it's our first back-to-back Number Ones. This is our fifth Number One, but this is the first one we've had back-to-back. (To) put icing on the cake, right before Christmas it was a two-week Number One, which with the record freeze and everything else with radio it makes it a four-week Number One, so it was a great Christmas present for Eddie and I both."
The festive mood of the party took a serious turn when Gentry reacted to the passing of Lynyrd Skynyrd member Billy Powell this week. Gentry got to know Powell when the two acts taped an episode of CMT's popular series, Crossroads, in 2004.
"It's a sad day, I guess, for anybody that grew up on southern rock. We grew up playing a lot of Lynyrd Skynyrd songs and have had the pleasure of performing with them onstage, or sharing the stage and onstage together with the CMT show we did with them. It was a big highlight just for Eddie and I just to be able to be around them and Billy Powell's one of the big names -- you know, Lynyrd Skynyrd. He'll definitely be missed, and I'll never forget any of the moments that we shared onstage, on and off."
TOBY KEITH HOPES YOU WANT TO DRESS LIKE HIM
He's thrown his hat into the restaurant business and the acting arena, and now Toby Keith adds clothing designer to his repertoire. The entertainer has created his own clothing line called TK Steelman. The line launches on February 18th at his own I Love This Bar & Grill in Harrah's Las Vegas.
* The line appeals to men in the 25-54 demographic with such attire as long-sleeve shirts, t-shirts, polos, sweatshirts, jeans, cowboy hats, baseball caps, bandanas, belts, and leather wrist straps.
* The look mixes the influences Keith brings to his own wardrobe, which are described in a release as a shy; "part rocker and part biker with a country sexy aesthetic. . ."
* The line is aimed at retailers like Kohl's, Target, Wal-Mart and Macy's. It will eventually expand to women.
* It was developed in partnership with Royal Merchandising Group, which already produces merchandise for Keith's restaurants. The launch date coincides with the MAGIC Marketplace convention, the world's largest fashion trade event, taking place from February 17th through the 19th in Las Vegas.
LEANN RIMES WRITES BOOK TO GO ALONG WITH SONG
LeAnn Rimes is making the leap from songwriter to author. The singer is taking a song she co-wrote on her latest album, called "What I Cannot Change," and turning it into a 128-page book. Also called What I Cannot Change, the book features a collection of stories from people who have gone on their own journeys of transformation and will include a CD of the song. Fans can pick up a copy of the book beginning on April 14th.
* Rimes' latest album, Family, was released in 2007.
* Rimes is scheduled to present at the upcoming Grammy Awards on February 8th. She is also nominated for Best Favorite Country Female Performance for "What I Cannot Change."
LYNYRD SKYNYRD KEYBOARDIST BILLY POWELL DEAD AT 56
Lynyrd Skynyrd keyboardist Billy Powell died early Wednesday (January 28th) at his home in Orange Park, Florida, at the age of 56. The Associated Press reported that Powell called 911 at 12:55 a.m. claiming that he was having difficulty breathing. EMS workers performed CPR, but he was pronounced dead at 1:52 a.m. Powell had a history of heart problems and had missed an appointment for a cardiac evaluation the day before his death. A police spokesman said that a heart attack is suspected and that no autopsy is planned. Memorial plans are still pending.
The band issued a statement on their official website lynyrdskynyrd.com saying, "A Great Loss -- Beloved Pianist for the Lynyrd Skynyrd Band, Billy Powell, passed away last night. We will post more info shortly. The family and band request your respect and understanding during this difficult time. Thank you."
Billboard reported that the band's future shows have all been postponed. Skynyrd was due to play tomorrow night (January 30th) in Kinder, Louisiana, and on Saturday (January 31st) in Biloxi, Miss. A European tour beginning on May 20th in Finland is still up in the air.
* Powell and founding guitarist Gary Rossington were the only two surviving band members in the group that were in the October 20th, 1977 plane crash that killed singer Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist Steve Gaines and his sister backup vocalist Cassie Gaines. Since the crash, guitarist Allen Collins and bassist Leon Wilkeson have also died. Drummer Artimus Pyle has been fired from the band.
* Powell started his career with Skynyrd as a roadie, and according to legend, after leader Ronnie Van Zant heard him play the piano part to "Free Bird," he was hired on as a full member. After the plane crash, Powell, Rossington, Collins, and Wilkeson formed the Rossington-Collins Band, and released two albums between 1980 and 1982.
* Back in 2004 we caught up with Powell and Rossington. Powell said the ongoing combination of rock and country was inspiring to him, with Rossington adding that he was hopeful it would have a direct benefit on Skynyrd:
(Powell) "We're a rock-and-roll band with a touch of country, and there's a lot of country bands out there, you know, that have a touch of rock-and-roll. And, and it looks like in 2004 there's a crossover thing happening. And I think it's pretty cool, you know, that rock bands are getting more country oriented, and, and vice-versa, I mean, you know, which I think is pretty cool." (Rossington) "Yeah, maybe CMT'll start playing some Skynyrd now."
Water Cooler Talk
* Billy Powell, a keyboardist for Lynyrd Skynyrd, died at his northeast Florida home on Wednesday. He was 56. Powell was one of two surviving band members who were with the group before a 1977 plane crash that killed three of its members.
* Author John Updike has passed away, after a short battle with cancer, at age 76. He gave us "Witches of Eastwick."
* David Archuleta will appear on Nickelodeon's iCarly on February 7.
* Director John Landis is suing Michael Jackson, saying he didn't receive his share of the profits from the 1983 video, "Thriller."
* The postmaster general asked Congress on Wednesday to lift the requirement that USPS deliver mail six days a week. If the change happens, Tuesday or Saturdays are likely to be eliminated for delivery of mail.
* Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band will take the stage at the Super Bowl on Sunday, and then hit the road on a concert tour April 1.
* What you won't read in Candace Smith's bio as a contestant in the latest round of "Survivor" is that she was once named in a sex tape scandal suit by Colin Farrell.
* Next Monday will be the 50th anniversary of "The Day The Music Died."
* Penelope Cruz was staying at Selma Hayek's house and was planning to sleep through the Oscar nominations... but her host woke her up and made sure she heard her nomination.
* Jennifer Lopez is giving serious thought to starring in a Broadway musical.
* Amy Winehouse says she's going to visit her husband in jail to try and talk him out of filing for divorce.
* The former sales manager for the Philadelphia Soul arena football team is suing club owner Jon Bon Jovi and his partners for nearly $125,000.
* Argentina's president had invited Elton John to get together... but when she postponed their meeting by 5 hours, Elton said, "Forget it" and flew out of the country.
* Just back from their honeymoon, Fergie and new hubby Josh Duhamel say they plan to adopt a child as soon as possible.
* In Denver, a woman gave birth to her baby in a public library.
* Nancy Cartwright, the voice of Bart Simpson, has ticked off the creator of the Simpsons because she's using Bart's voice to promote a Scientology event with a pre-recorded, automated call.
* American Idol Runner-up Katharine McPhee was dropped by her record label, but then resigned by another.
* Wow, Meg Ryan's latest movie, "The Deal"... is going direct to DVD. Ouch!
* Now investigators says that Olivia Newton-John's ex-boyfriend staged his own death four years ago and is living on a boat somewhere.
* Sorry to say that a big craze in Hollywood is vandalizing the stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Taggers wrote "Old" and "Fur Hag" on Sharon Stone's star the other night.
* American Idol contestant Melinda Doolittle's gospel album comes out next month.
YOUR CRAVINGS DECODED
(Glamour) Dying for Oreos or chips? Your body may be trying to tell you something about your diet, says Keri Glassman, R.D., a New York City nutritionist. Tune in and avoid packing on the pounds when you crave:
- Salty or greasy food -- It could mean you're slightly dehydrated. "Salt holds water in," says Glassman. "Your body may be trying to hang onto the fluids it's got." Aim for eight glasses of water a day.
- Candy or chocolate -- It could mean you need protein. Without its slow releasing energy, your body will try to get a quick fix to boost blood sugar. Try a cup of yogurt it has 24 percent of your daily protein total.
- Bread or pasta -- It could mean you don't eat enough. Starches are already partially broken down, so your body knows carbs will give it energy fast. Be sure to eat at least 1,200 calories a day.
A WHOLE LOTTA SHAKIN'
Experts say the way you shake hands can make or break the kind of impression you project. check out the variety of handshakes below and choose the one that reflects your own personal style. Then read what your hand is telling people.
- Lazy -- A handshake with no oomph is considered a sign of weakness or insecurity. Your lack of enthusiasm indicates a total disinterest.
- Two hands -- Glad-handing can convey warmth and sincerity, but it may also put off strangers as assuming too much intimacy.
- Bone crusher -- You can be proud of your buff bod with-out hurting others. Lighten up before you put someone in the ER.
- Pull -- Pulling someone closer while you shake makes others think you're bossy. Try not to come across as so overbearing.
- Firm -- Shaking with your full hand while maintaining eye contact is a winner. You're making a statement of confidence and self-esteem.
- Underhand -- If you grip with an underhanded move that twists the other person's wrist, you are a total control freak.
- Finger snag -- Shaking or squeezing the four fingers of your acquaintance denotes domination -- and it's creepy too.
10 funny flirting facts
- Flirting is good for you. Studies show that people who flirt have higher white blood-cell counts, which boost their immunity and keep them healthy.
- Think it ends at a little eye batting? Hardly -- all told, scientists say there are 52 "flirting signals" used by humans. Of these, the hair flip is the most common.
- In some places, flirting is illegal. In Little Rock, AR, an antiquated law is still on the books warning that engaging in playful banter may result in a 30-day jail term. In New York City, another outdated law mandates that men may be fined $25 for gazing lasciviously at a female; a second conviction stipulates the offender wear a pair of blinders whenever he goes out for a walk.
- Why wait for Happy Hour? Lots of people get their flirt on during their morning commute. A full 62 percent of drivers have flirted with someone in a different vehicle while on the go, and 31 percent of those flirtations, it turns out, resulted in a date.
- Flirting need not occur face to face. According to Pew Research, 40 percent of people who look for love online say they can easily flirt with someone via email or IM.
- In the Victorian era, fans were the ultimate playful prop that could communicate all sorts of messages. A fan placed near the heart meant, You have won my love. A half-opened fan pressed to the lips suggested, You may kiss me.
- These days, cell phones do the flirting. In one survey, half of all mobile phone users have texted suggestive messages to keep things interesting while away from their amour.
- Watch out, you can overdo it. According to the Social Issues Research Centre, the most common mistake people make when flirting is maintaining too much eye contact.
- Sometimes, flirty gestures aren't what they seem. Research has shown that men tend to routinely mistake friendly behavior for flirting.
- Flirting is universal. A woman living in New York City and one in rural Cambodia may not have much in common, but when it comes to attracting a little attention, they both employ the very same move: smiling, arching their eyebrows, then averting their gaze and giggling.
What is something that no one tells you before marriage?
We primed them with this list from Redbook: "8 Things No One Tells You About Marriage":
- You will look at the person lying next to you and wonder, Is this it? Forever?
- You'll work harder than you ever imagined.
- You will sometimes go to bed mad (and maybe even wake up madder).
- You will go without sex -- sometimes for a long time -- and that's okay.
- Getting your way is usually not as important as finding a way to work together.
- A great marriage doesn't mean no conflict; it simply means a couple keeps trying to get it right.
- You'll realize that you can only change yourself.
- As you face your fears and insecurities, you will find out what you're really made of.
95% of women are most likely to pay attention to the vehicle's cleanliness both inside and out on their date's car, according to survey by Ford Motor Co. 58% said that the condition of their date's vehicle would at least somewhat impact their attraction to the person.
Having a romantic relationship makes both men and women happier, and the stronger the relationship's commitment, the greater the happiness and sense of well-being of its partners, according to a recent study from Cornell University and Pennsylvania State University. Interestingly, both husbands and wives have a far greater sense of well-being, compared to singles or co-habitators, even if the marriage is not a particularly happy one.
75% of teens online use Instant Messaging for about 40 minutes per day, compared with 42% of adults. Some 20% of teens have used IM to ask someone out and to break up as well. Almost a third of teens admit to saying something in an Instant Message that they wouldn't have said in person.
If you love hip hop music, chances are you have fared better in the bedroom than your friends who prefer country music. Hip hop fans are likely to have had more sexual partners in the last five years than fans of other types of music, according to a study from Britain's University of Leicester.
According to Women's Health, the average person loses 49 minutes of sleep each night when they share a bed with a snorer. And the mag estimates that 30% of women snore with some regularity.
Couples who smooch just for the heck of it have eight times less stress and depression than those who pucker up only when they have sex, a Berman Center Study found.
Teenagers, texting, and driving: Three words you never want to hear in a sentence. These days text messaging has taken over a quick phone call and even a conversation that could take 1
5 minutes, especially with our teens. California is trying to pass a law that does not allow teenagers to text while driving. The argument could be: should anyone be texting while driving. Is this safe? Is it safe for a young teenager or young adult to drive and text, or better yet at any age? We did a poll on our web page and be of people said that all electronic devices should be banned, be the drivers kids or adults.
Give the girl some space!
Glamour reports about women and their living space:
- 36% say their biggest decorating splurge was their bed
- The average young single woman pays $456 a month in rent
- 35% of women younger than 45 own their own home
- 85% say they clean their home once a week or more
- 67% tackle their own project around the house
- 37% would rather garden or paint their place than go shopping
- 45% say they most often eat dinner on their couch
- 47% of women ages 18-24 still live at home with their parents
- 9% of women age 25-34 still live at home with their parents
- 77% of women described their decorating style as cozy and casual
- 39% of people do not decorate for the holidays
K-Flag Country Music News
TICKETS TO KENNY CHESNEY'S PHILLY SHOW GO ON SALE EARLY
Demand for tickets to Kenny Chesney's stadium show at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia went on sale yesterday, two weeks earlier than originally scheduled. The June 27th Sun City Carnival show will also feature performances from Sugarland, Montgomery Gentry, Miranda Lambert and Lady Antebellum.
* Chesney said, "This is our third year in Philadelphia, and it's becoming one of those markets like Boston, where the fans come out and make us feel like a big part of their summer. And you can tell, these fans are invested in the music, in who we are..."
* The Sun City Carnival tour stop in Boston on August 15th sold out in less than 10 minutes. This is Chesney's fifth consecutive sold out show at the city's Gillette Stadium.
* Chesney's 2008 Poets & Pirates tour was the only one last year to draw more than a million fans. This is the seventh year in a row that Chesney has managed that feat.
* The singer recently earned his first Grammy nomination for "Shiftwork," featuring George Strait. Chesney is set to perform live on the 51st Grammy Awards broadcast, which airs on February 8th on CBS.
TRACE ADKINS SAYS IT MIGHT BE WISE TO 'MARRY FOR MONEY'
Trace Adkins is a big fan of his new single, "Marry For Money." Adkins gets a kick out of the funny tune, which he told us could be the answer to someone's financial crisis.
"'Marry For Money'? That's a great song! It's my economic stimulus plan. I think that if everybody that has a lot of money in this country would marry somebody that doesn't, it could solve all our problems. And people that don't have money should try really hard to marry somebody that does."
* "Marry For Money" is featured on Adkins' new album, X (Ten).
* Adkins was among the artists celebrating their recent Grammy nominations during a party in Nashville on Monday (January 26th) night. The singer is up for Best Country Male Performance for "You're Gonna Miss This." The 51st annual Grammy Awards takes place February 8th in Los Angeles.
LITTLE BIG TOWN'S OPENING BAND CONTEST DRAWS BIG RESPONSE
The competition to be Little Big Town's opening act is heating up. The group recently announced a contest inviting local bands to compete for the chance to open one of four of Little Big Town's shows in March.
Group member Karen Fairchild told us that response has been incredible.
"I think that like as of yesterday there was like 145 bands had already entered, so now it's up to their fans to vote (for) them. The four of us luckily don't have that pressure, so we don't have the pick. The fans will dictate. Whoever has the most votes will get the opening slot."
Kimberly Schlapman and Jimi Westbrook recall their early days of trying to be heard:
"(Schlapman) We'll never forget those days. They made us who we are today, and it's so important at that point to just get your music out for people to hear. That's the main goal at that point, cause that's how you grow your grassroots and also, it's really great that we get to give another band that opportunity. (Westbrook) There's so many talented musicians in bands out there, and they deserve to be heard. This is just a great way to do it."
* Little Big Town kicked off their A Place To Land tour last weekend. This is their first headlining tour.
* Upcoming shows include Montgomery, Alabama tomorrow (Thursday, January 29th) night, Atlanta, Georgia on Friday (January 30th) and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina on Saturday (January 31st).
CHUCK WICKS HELPS OUT HOMETOWN IN NEED
Chuck Wicks lent a helping hand to his hometown of Smyrna, Delaware over the weekend. The singer and his girlfriend, Julianne Hough, performed a benefit concert for the local Boys & Girls Club in the gym of Wicks' old high school. Wicks learned of the organization's need for building repairs from his aunt, who happens to be the superintendent of the city's school district. Admission to the event was the purchase of a Chuck Wicks CD. His record label then donated back the cost of the CD to the Boys & Girls Club. More than 6,000 CDs were sold at the show, in addition to auction items. All in all, the fundraiser brought in more than $25,000.
* Wicks told the Smyrna-Clayton Sun Times that he hopes to make the event an annual one.
* Wicks plays the Grand Ole Opry on Friday (January 31st).
* Wicks and Hough began dating last August while on Brad Paisley's Paisley Party tour.
* Hough recently told People magazine that the two are contemplating marriage.
MICHELLE BRANCH IS ALMOST DONE WITH HER NEW SOLO ALBUM
Michelle Branch is hard at work on a new solo album and recently posted a clip of the new song, "My Way," on her website. There's no word on when the set, tentatively titled Everything Comes and Goes, will be released, but Branch say she's almost done. She wrote a note to fans on her website, explaining, "I love you guys. Thanks for attempting to be patient while I add the final touches. This is the best record I have made to date (in my opinion anyway) and I can't wait for you all to hear it." The upcoming effort will be Branch's first solo release since 2003's Hotel Paper. Over the last few years, she's released material with her country duo the Wreckers.
* Branch was born in Sedona, Arizona. She now lives outside of Nashville, Tennessee.
* She married her bass player, Teddy Landau, in 2004.
Men's Health asked readers what they fear:
- 64% do not fear public speaking
- 63% do not fear growing older
- 65% do not fear death
- 88% do not fear air travel
- 57% do not fear a poor sexual performance
Water Cooler Talk
* A federal appeals court has ordered Taco Bell to pay $42 million to the creators of the little Chihuahua who made the phrase "!Yo quiero Taco Bell!" popular.
* Matt Lauer will have the first sit-down interview with President Obama since he took office... and you'll see that in the Super Bowl pre-game show.
* To trim your waistline and tone your abs, just play with a hula hoop! Personal trainer Lorrie Henry of Phoenix, Arizona says the still-popular toy is becoming a staple in many fitness and exercise routines.
* Notice how the TV stations have been yelling "February 17th is coming!" for a while now. Now it appears congress believes America is not ready to make the switch to digital TV quite yet... and are planning on delaying the deadline four months or so.
* How about this new celebrity couple: Kirsten Dunst and Josh Hartnett?
* Rapper Kanye West now wants to be known as Martin Louis the King, Jr., incorporating his love of the French designer Louis Vuittone with a tribute to U.S. civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr.
* Marie's done it... now, Donny Osmond is said to be interested in "Dancing with the Stars."
* The ashes of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and his wife will both be shot into space some time next year.
* Madonna tops Pollstar's top 20 concert tours with $5.153,252 in receipts and an average ticket price of $142.38.
* Hope you didn't have your fingers crossed for any more "Fantastic Four" movies. That franchise appears to be dead.
* Spice Girl Geri Halliwell is engaged to wed Italian yacht-company owner Fabrizio Politi.