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Monday, December 24, 2012

There will be no blog on Monday, December 24th thru Jan3rd. Regular feeds will resume on Jan 3rd as I will be on Vacation!
Merry Christams & Happy New Year!!

Friday, December 21, 2012

KFLAG COUNTRY MUISC UPDATE

Kellie Pickler just completed her sixth USO tour overseas to perform for the U.S. troops as part of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey's USO holiday tour.
Other celebrities that joined her on the seven-day, four-country tour throughout the Middle East included: Ross Detwiler and Craig Stammen of the Washington Nationals, Matt Hendricks of the Washington Capitals and comedian Iliza Shlesinger.
  • Pickler said at her performance at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan on Dec. 16, "It's always different coming here this time of year. [During] the holidays, everyone wants to be home with their families and loved ones. And I know it's just as hard for [your] families back home, so they're making a sacrifice as well. I just want to say thanks so much for all that you do, and thank you to your families as they make a huge sacrifice. This time of year is really hard so I hope that you know that we love you. The USO, all of us, we are praying for a safe return home for you all. We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year."
CHECK IT OUT
  • For more information about the USO, download their official fact sheet here: http://bit.ly/yaebvo.

LeAnn Rimes says that she was not drunk when she performed on The X Factor on Wednesday (December 19) night. According to TMZ, LeAnn says that she was not impaired and the performance may have seemed awkward because she was trying to help the 13-year-old Carly Rose Sonenclar perform "How Do I Live" -- which she was having some difficulty with.
  • LeAnn's lawyer said, "LeAnn was not performing the way she would normally perform, because she was on stage with a young girl. There have been a lot of untrue things said by others and it feeds into this sort of thing."
CHECK IT OUT
Blake Shelton tied the knot with his longtime love, Miranda Lambert in 2011 after dating her for five years. So it's no surprise that when he saw his manager, Brandon Blackstock, so in love with his friend, Kelly Clarkson -- Blake made sure that Brandon made it official.
Blake said, "I told Brandon, 'Man, you need to grow up and you figure out that you need to marry this girl,' I am going on the record saying, I will do the music at the wedding or whatever you want to do, I'll be that guy. I will play for four hours if I have to, cause you need to get you[r] head out of your a** and ask that girl to marry you."
  • Blake offered to sing at Kelly and Brandon's wedding.
  • Blackstock is the son of Clarkson's manager, Narvel Blackstock, who is married to Reba McEntire.
  • Brandon proposed to Kelly on December 14.
CHECK IT OUT

Eric Church's favorite holiday tradition, is one his grandmother started many years ago. Eric told us that he intends on carrying over the tradition with his immediate family, which includes wife, Katherine, and their young son, Boone.
He said, "My grandmother, when she was alive, would always come over, and every year she would bring this Christmas story, and some of them were gut-wrenching. I'm not going to lie to you. They were just heart tugging stories about people who had had . . . about a Christmas miracle, who had something happen to them; something magical for Christmas that had turned life around, whether it was a homeless person, or just anything. And she would always look all year long and find this story, and then we would have breakfast and she would read it, and it was just our family and we've carried that on. My mom does that now and she's kind of taken it and she finds the story, and that's something I'm going to do with my family. And Katherine and I have talked about it. It'll be her turn to find that and we have a big Christmas breakfast and we sit around and we share that. It's just a neat thing, family-wise, to have that and to always wonder what that story is going to be and what it's going to be about, and sometimes they're brutal. I mean it can be hard, you know. You get up on Christmas morning and you're in a good mood and they're just gut-wrenching, you know, but it's fun to put things in perspective, and it makes you think about people that aren't as fortunate."
Luke Bryan was the biggest winner at the 3rd Annual American Country Awards, taking home 9 awards -- including: Artist of the Year, Male Artist of the Year and Album of the Year for Tailgates and Tanlines. So what's a big time winner like him doing for Christmas? Luke told us that he and his family, wife Caroline and sons Bo and Tate - will spend Christmas at home this year.
He said, "Christmas is going to be good. My wife and I, we finally said we're not loading the boys up on a tour bus and driving 'em down to Georgia and all that. We're spending Christmas in Nashville and Santa's coming to the house. We've got two boys that they understand Santa, and they're ready for them to get there. Now, we just gotta get ol' Santa down the chimney."
COUNTRY TRIVIA
Q. "Hard Candy Christmas" is from which Dolly Parton film?
A. The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas
Friday, December 21st

ON THE TUBE
ACM GIRLS NIGHT OUT: SUPERSTAR WOMEN OF COUNTRY/GAC 4:00PM (ET)
Rascal Flatts, Reba, John Fogerty,The Judds, Little Big Town, Martina McBride, Ronnie Dunn, Jennifer Nettles, Vince Gill, Carrie Underwood, Blake Shelton, Miranda Lambert
BACKSTORY: BLAKE SHELTON/GAC 6:00PM (ET)

CELEBRATING BIRTHDAYS

  • Lee Roy Parnell (56)
  • Eric Gunderson (Love And Theft) (28)
  • Brad Warren (The Warren Brothers) (44)
  • Andy Dick (actor-comedian, NewsRadio, Old School, Less than Perfect) (47)
  • Phil Donahue (former talk show host; husband of Marlo Thomas) (77)
  • Chris Evert (former tennis star) (58)
  • Jane Fonda (actress/workout guru/activist) (75)
  • Samuel L. Jackson (actor, Pulp Fiction, Star Wars: Episodes I, II & III, S.W.A.T., The Incredibles) (64)
  • Jane Kaczmarek (actress, Malcolm in the Middle) (57)
  • Ray Romano (actor, Everybody Loves Raymond) (55)
  • Kiefer Sutherland (actor, Stand By Me, The Lost Boys, Phone Booth, 24; son of Donald Sutherland) (46)
  • Marilyn Scott (jazz singer) (63)
  • Betty Wright (R&B singer, "Clean Up Woman") (59)
  • Julie Delpy (actress, Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, Two Days In Paris) (43)
  • Brett Scallions (ex-singer, Fuel) (41)

INDUSTRY NEWS


MARK WAHLBERG CONFIRMS 'TED 2': Mark Wahlberg told Collider.com that Seth MacFarlane is working on a sequel to their hit film Ted. Wahlberg says Seth's ideas for Ted 2 are "sick."
ZAC EFRON JOINS JFK CONSPIRACY MOVIE: Zac Efron has joined the all-star cast of Parkland -- a film exploring the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Marcia Gay Harden, Paul Giamatti, Billy Bob Thornton, and Jacki Weaver are also attached.
ROSE MCGOWAN TO GUEST STAR ON 'ONCE UPON A TIME': Rose McGowan has been cast to play the young version of Barbara Hershey's character Cora on Once Upon A Time. She will appear in a flashback during an episode showing the origin story of the character.
'DARK KNIGHT' TRAILER WAS YOUTUBE'S MOST WATCHED OF 2012: The Dark Knight Rises was YouTube's most watched movie trailer of the year. Skyfall, Ted, and Hunger Games also made the top 10.
BEN AFFLECK DROPS OUT OF 'FOCUS': Ben Affleck has dropped out of playing the veteran con artist role in the film Focus. He had been scheduled to co-star with Kristen Stewart.

CELEBRITY GOSSIP


DANIELLE FISHEL IS A COLLEGE GRADUATE AND ENGAGED: Boy Meets World star Danielle Fishel earned her college degree after returning to school at 27-years-old. She posted the news on her Tumblr page and also revealed that she is engaged to a guy that she met as a math tutor in school.
KIM KARDASHIAN'S BANGS ARE FAKE: Kim Kardashian announced on her blog that the bangs that she was recently photographed with are actually fake. She was just wearing clip-ons for a Cosmo cover shoot.
CHRIS PRATT REVEALS WEIGHT FLUCTUATION ON 'CONAN': Parks and Recreation actor Chris Pratt told Conan that he spent five to six months getting ripped to play a member of Seal Team Six in Zero Dark Thirty. Immediately after filming he had to pack on 60 pounds for a new role.
CRYSTAL HARRIS CELEBRATES UPCOMING NUPTIALS AT BRIDAL SHOWER: Hugh Hefner's wife-to-be Crystal Harris celebrated her bridal shower at Femme Fatale on Wednesday (December 20th) in Studio City, California. The party was hosted by her friend Ashley Matthau and Hefner's sister-in-law Caya Hefner.
BLAKE LIVELY SHARES WEDDING PHOTOS: Blake Lively has been very private about the details of her wedding to Ryan Reynolds back in September but the actress has shared some of the photos with Martha Stewart Weddings. Take a look: http://bit.ly/VT9nvM

KRISTA STODDEN COMPARES COURTNEY TO ANNA


Courtney Stodden's mother Krista believes that her daughter is a victim of discrimination. Mama Stodden explained to The Huffington Post that regardless of her haters, Courtney will remain in the spotlight in 2013. The proud mom even compares her teenager to Pam Anderson and a sober version of Anna Nicole Smith.
Krista told the website, "It won't be 15 minutes of fame because it's an evergreen story. Courtney is so intriguing; she's almost an addiction for people. Her light shines. When she walks into an event, it's incredible, as her mom and manager, to watch the reaction from people. There are so many horrible things we read, but when people meet her in person is so rewarding." Both mother and daughter blame all of the negative criticism against Courtney on women who are jealous of how sexy and beautiful the 18-year-old is.
  • Courtney will reportedly spend 2013 focused on her music career and more reality TV opportunities.
CHECK IT OUT:

REBEL WILSON IS HOLLYWOOD HOT COMMODITY


28-year-old Rebel Wilson's career has exploded over the past year and shows no signs of slowing down. The Australian actress was recently spotted leaving a meeting in Venice, California with an arm full of scripts.
In addition to developing her own sitcom at ABC and several new films in post-production, Rebel is also being courted to star in the sequel to 2012's Pitch Perfect. Skylar Astin, Wilson's Pitch Perfect co-star, told movieweb.com, "I do have a meeting with a Universal representative next week. And I know that Rebel Wilson had hers last weekend. It's definitely a talking point."

  • Rebel was named Next Big Thing in Details magazine's Hollywood Mavericks issue.
CHECK IT OUT:

JENNIE GARTH DENIES DATING LUKE PERRY



Recently divorced Jennie Garth continues to deny that she and former Beverly Hills, 90210 co-star Luke Perry are dating. The pair have sparked rumors since they've started spending a lot time together after Garth's divorce from Peter Facinelli -- her husband of 11 years.
The actress told OMG! Yahoo, "We're just really close friends. I love him so much, dating him might be weird!" She admitted that there is an undeniable chemistry between her and Luke which they are hoping to capitalize on in an upcoming project. She went on to say, "We're going to start having our creative meetings with writers and producers in the new year."
CHECK IT OUT:

HUGH JACKMAN TALKS FATHERHOOD



Les Miserables star Hugh Jackman believes that a father's relationship to his son is completely different than being a dad to a daughter. The 44-year-old actor covers Sunday's Parade magazine and dishes on his career and family.
Jackman explains that with his son he tries to instill a certain toughness because he knows first-hand what a man goes through in life but he also told the magazine, "With a daughter, this protective side comes out. When I come home, my daughter will run to the door and give me a big hug, and everything that's happened that day just melts away." He added that between he and his wife Deborra-Lee Furness, Hugh is the strict one while she tends to be more lenient.
  • Hugh and Deb are parents to 12-year-old Oscar and 7-year-old Ava. The children were adopted after Deborra-Lee miscarried a pregnancy they achieved through in vitro fertilization.

TATE STEVENS WINS THE 'X-FACTOR'


Tate Stevens has been named the winner of the second season of The X-Factor. The 37-year-old country singer beat 13-year-old Carly Rose Sonenclar for the $5 million recording contract. "First and foremost I got to thank the man upstairs for taking care of me. My family, all the country music fans, God bless you and thank you so very much for all the votes" said Stevens. Simon Cowell's group Fifth Harmony landed in third place.
The show began with the three finalists stepping out on the red carpet performing "All You Need Is Love". The finale also featured the top three singing Christmas songs, along with guest appearances by Pitbull who performed "Don't Stop The Party" and One Direction who performed "Kiss You."

MOVIES OPENING THIS WEEKEND



Opening today (Friday December 21st) is the new comedy from director/writer Judd Apatow, This is 40, starring Paul Rudd, Leslie Mann, Megan Fox, Albert Brooks and Chris O'Dowd. The film follows Pete and Debbie who, after years of marriage and raising two daughters, find themselves going through a three week course of sex, romance, career victories and financial hardships as they struggle to forgive, forget and enjoy the rest of their lives.

  • This is 40 is rated R and has a running time of 2 hours and 14 minutes.

Opening today (Friday December 21st) is the new action/thriller, Jack Reacher, starring Tom Cruise, Rosamund Pike, Robert Duvall, Werner Herzog and Richard Jenkins. The film follows Jack Reacher as he investigates a shooting that took the lives of five people, a seemingly clear cut case, but the further Jack delves into it, the more complicated it gets.
  • Jack Reacher is rated PG-13 and has a running time of 2 hours and 10 minutes.


Opening today (Friday December 21st) is the new fantasy, Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away, starring Erica Linz, Igor Zaripov and John Clarke. The film follows Mia who instantly falls in love with an aerialist but when their eyes meet, he slips and falls, dragging Mia with him into another world. When they get separated in the new world, they must travel through a place that exists between life and death to find each other again.
  • Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away is rated PG and has a running time of 1 hour and 31 minutes.
  • Acts from Cirque du Soleil's shows O, Mystere and others illustrate the journey of Mia and the aerialist.
The following clips are from Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away:


Opening today (Friday December 21st) is the new drama, Not Fade Away, starring Jack Huston, James Gandolfini, Molly Price, John Margaro and Will Brill. The film, set in 1964, follows three best friends who decide to form a rock band.
  • Not Fade Away has a rating of NR (Not Rated) and has a running time of 1 hour and 57 minutes.
The following clip is from Not Fade Away:

HEADLINE NEWS

HOUSE GOP CANCELS VOTE ON BOEHNER'S 'PLAN B' FOR 'FISCAL CLIFF': House Republicans last night (December 20th) abruptly canceled a planned vote on their legislation to avoid the "fiscal cliff," after being unable to get enough "yes" votes from within their own majority party in the chamber to get it passed. The lack of support among the GOP lawmakers was an embarrassment for Speaker John Boehner, who'd pushed the legislation, dubbed "Plan B," after walking away from fiscal cliff negotiations with President Obama that had seemed to be making progress. It also showed again the power of the tea party-backed Republicans in opposing the measure, which would have allowed the Bush tax cuts to expire for households that earn $1 million or more. After the vote was canceled, the House session ended, and everyone left for the Christmas break, with the fiscal cliff problem still unsolved as we head closer to the end-of-the-year deadline.
SERVICES CONTINUE FOR NEWTOWN VICTIMS: The funerals and memorial services continued Thursday (December 20th) for the victims of the Newtown massacre, with services held for six-year-olds Catherine Hubbard, Jesse Lewis, Benjamin Wheeler, Allison Wyatt and Emilie Parker, and teachers Anne Marie Murphy and Lauren Rousseau. Today, many Americans will be remembering those lost with a moment of silence. Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy called for residents of his state to observe the moment at 9:30 a.m. ET, to mark a week since the attack. Several other states are following suit, and the National Cathedral in Washington plans to ring its bell 28 times as part of an interfaith memorial.

  • Also today, the National Rifle Association will hold a news conference, which was announced on Tuesday (December 18th), after the powerful gun rights group had remained silent since the mass shooting. The statement said the NRA was, quote, "prepared to offer meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again."
MIDWEST HIT WITH FIRST MAJOR STORM OF THE SEASON: The first major winter storm of the season hit the Midwest on Thursday (December 20th), bringing a blizzard to the Plains states and tornadoes to Alabama and Arkansas. There was a 25-car accident on an Iowa highway due to the bad driving conditions in which three people were killed. The winter storm, named Draco by the Weather Channel, marked a dramatic change from the mild December so far in most of the nation.
TODAY'S FYI:
LATE SENATOR INOUYE LIES IN STATE AT CAPITOL: The late Democratic Senator Daniel Inouye of Hawaii, who died on Monday (December 17th) at age 88, was given the rare honor yesterday (December 20th) of lying in state in the Capitol Rotunda. Nearly every member of the U.S. Senate and many House members gathered in the Rotunda to honor Inouye, a highly-decorated World War Two veteran and Medal of Honor winner who lost an arm in combat, and was the second longest-serving senator ever, having been first elected in 1962. Congressional leaders and Vice President Joe Biden, who served in the Senate with Inouye, placed three wreaths around the casket. Inouye will lie in state at the National Cathedral in Washington today, and at Hawaii's state capitol in Honolulu on Saturday.
  • The last person to lie in state in the Rotunda was former President Gerald Ford, in 2006.
BERNARD MADOFF'S BROTHER SENTENCED TO 10 YEARS: Peter Madoff, the brother of multi-billion-dollar Ponzi schemer Bernard Madoff, was sentenced on Thursday (December 20th) to 10 years behind bars for his role in the massive swindle. The judge who sentenced the 67-year-old Madoff yesterday said he was, quote, "frankly, not believable" when he claimed he was as surprised as anyone to learn about his brother's Ponzi scheme. Peter Madoff had been the firm's chief compliance officer for nearly four decades, but prosecutors said his role in the conspiracy began in 1996, when he created false and misleading compliance documents and false reports for the Securities and Exchange Commission. Madoff pleaded guilty in June to conspiracy and falsifying the books and records of an investment adviser.
  • Bernard Madoff is serving a 150-year sentence.
NORTH DAKOTA POPULATION IS FASTEST-GROWING: The state with the fastest-growing population is not one you might expect, with the Census Bureau saying Thursday (December 20th) that North Dakota's population grew faster than that of any other state in the year ending in July, as the oil production boom that has transformed its economy continued to draw people. The bureau said that North Dakota's population grew nearly 2.2 percent between July 2011 and July 2012, nearly three times faster than the nation as a whole. However, North Dakota's population of 699,628 is still smaller than that of every other state except Vermont and Wyoming.
  • California is still the most populous state, with 38 million people, followed by Texas, with 26.1 million, New York, with 19.6 million, Florida with 19.3 million, and Illinois, with 12.9 million.
OBAMA HOLDING JUST TWO INAUGURAL BALLS, LEAST IN 60 YEARS: It was revealed Thursday (December 20th) that President Obama plans to have just two inaugural balls when he's sworn in next month for a second term, the lowest number in 60 years. Four years ago, when Obama was first elected, there were 10 of them. Planners said the reduction is a reflection of tough economic times and an effort to minimize the burden on law enforcement, security personnel and Washington residents. Both balls are being planned for the Washington Convention Center on Monday, January 21st, the evening of Obama's public inauguration. Under the Constitution, the president's second term begins on January 20th at noon, but Obama will be sworn in then privately at the White House, since inaugural celebrations traditionally aren't held on Sundays. One of the parties will be the Commander In Chief's Ball, a tradition started by President George W. Bush for members of the Armed Forces. The other, simply being called the Inaugural Ball, will be larger than usual and held across all the halls in the convention center.
SPORTS:
NHL CANCELS GAMES THROUGH JANUARY 14TH: The point of no return is continuing to draw closer for hockey, with the NHL yesterday (December 20th) canceling all games through January 14th. More than 50 percent of the schedule has now been lost to the lockout, but the NHL has yet to set a date at which they'll have to cancel the entire season. No new talks are scheduled between the two sides. The NHL lost its entire 2004-05 season because of another lockout, the only North American professional sports league to cancel a season because of a labor dispute.
(Headline News, FYI and Sports stories were compiled in part from reports by the Associated Press and Reuters.)

ON THE TUBE

CBS

  • THE GOOD WIFE (repeat)
  • THE GOOD WIFE (repeat)
  • THE GOOD WIFE (repeat)
NBC
  • MICHAEL BUBLE: HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS (repeat)
  • A WHITE HOUSE CHRISTMAS: FIRST FAMILIES REMEMBER (repeat)
  • DATELINE NBC - Investigative journalism.
FOX
  • KITCHEN NIGHTMARES (repeat)
  • FRINGE - Peter, Olivia, Astrid and Walter get help from Nina Sharp as they try to find the answer to defeating the Observers.
ABC
  • LAST MAN STANDING (repeat)
  • MALIBU COUNTRY (repeat)
  • BACK TO BEGINNING WITH CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR - TBA
CW
  • THE HAPPY ELF - Eubie the Elf's attempts to bring Christmas joy to a dreary town called Bluesville.
  • GRANDMA GOT RUN OVER BY A REINDEER - A youth embarks on a journey to find his missing grandmother and prove that Santa Claus is real.
DAY TIME TALK SHOW
THE ELLEN DEGENERES SHOW - Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, Kirstie Alley
THE VIEW - Naomi Watts, tsunami survivor Maria Belon
KATIE - TBA
LATE NIGHT TALK SHOWS
THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN (CBS) - Jay Thomas, Darlene Love
THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO (NBC) - Terry Bradshaw, Elle Fanning, Chris Mann
JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE (ABC) -
THE LATE LATE SHOW WITH CRAIG FERGUSON (CBS) - Jamie Foxx, Bianca Kajlich
LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON (NBC) -
LAST CALL WITH CARSON DALY (NBC) - Meghan McCain, "Next Stop For Charlie", Family of the Year
SATURDAY
NBC
  • SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE (repeat)
SUNDAY
CBS
  • NCIS: LOS ANGELES (repeat)
  • THE GOOD WIFE (repeat)
  • THE MENTALIST (repeat)
NBC
  • FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA - Pregame.
  • NFL FOOTBALL - San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks.
FOX
  • THE SIMPSONS (repeat)
  • BOB'S BURGERS (repeat)
  • FAMILY GUY (repeat)
  • AMERICAN DAD (repeat)
ABC
  • THE SOUND OF MUSIC - A nun in training leaves her convent and becomes governess to Captain Von Trapp's seven children in Austria before World War II. Starring Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer, Eleanor Parker and Peggy Wood.
BRAVO
  • THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ATLANTA - TBA
  • SHAHS OF SUNSET - Asa brings her celebrity boyfriend to lunch on the job; Reza and MJ are forced to confront their feelings.
MONDAYCHRISTMAS EVE DAY
CBS
  • HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER (repeat)
  • HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER (repeat)
  • 2 BROKE GIRLS (repeat)
  • MIKE & MOLLY (repeat)
  • HAWAII FIVE-0 (repeat)
NBC
  • IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE - Ruined by a miser on Christmas Eve, a suicidal family man sees life in a new light thanks to his guardian angel. Starring James Stewart, Donna Reed and Lionel Barrymore.
FOX
  • RAISING HOPE (repeat)
  • RAISING HOPE (repeat)
  • RAISING HOPE (repeat)
  • RAISING HOPE (repeat)
ABC
  • DISNEY PREP & LANDING (repeat)
  • SHREK THE HALLS (repeat)
  • SHREK THE THIRD - Shrek and the gang set out to find Fiona's cousin, Artie, and bring him back to rule the land of Far, Far Away.
CW
  • CHRISTMAS IS HERE AGAIN (repeat)
  • SECOND STAR TO THE LEFT (repeat)
DAY TIME TALK SHOW
THE ELLEN DEGENERES SHOW - (repeat)
THE VIEW - (repeat)
KATIE COURIC - (repeat)
LATE NIGHT TALK SHOWS
THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN (CBS) - (repeat)
THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO (NBC) - (repeat)
JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE (ABC) - (repeat)
THE LATE LATE SHOW WITH CRAIG FERGUSON (CBS) - (repeat)
LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON (NBC) - (repeat)
LAST CALL WITH CARSON DALY (NBC) - (repeat)
THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART (COMEDY CENTRAL) - (repeat)
THE COLBERT REPORT (COMEDY CENTRAL) - (repeat)
CONAN - (repeat)
TUESDAYCHRISTMAS DAY
CBS
  • NCIS (repeat)
  • NCIS: LOS ANGELES (repeat)
  • VEGAS (repeat)
NBC
  • HORTON HEARS A WHO! - Horton the elephant's friends think he has gone crazy when he claims that a tiny community lives on a speck of dust.
  • BLAKE SHELTON'S NOT SO FAMILY CHRISTMAS (repeat)
FOX
  • NEW GIRL (repeat)
  • NEW GIRL (repeat)
  • NEW GIRL (repeat)
  • NEW GIRL (repeat)
ABC
  • DR. SUESS' HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS - A curmugeon sets out to squash Christmas for the people of Whoville. Starring Jim Carrey, Jeffrey Tambor and Molly Shannon.
CW
  • HART OF DIXIE (repeat)
  • EMILY OWENS, M.D. (repeat)
DAY TIME TALK SHOW
THE ELLEN DEGENERES SHOW - (repeat)
THE VIEW - (repeat)
KATIE COURIC - (repeat)
LATE NIGHT TALK SHOWS
THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN (CBS) - (repeat)
THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO (NBC) - (repeat)
JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE (ABC) - (repeat)
THE LATE LATE SHOW WITH CRAIG FERGUSON (CBS) - (repeat)
LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON (NBC) - (repeat)
LAST CALL WITH CARSON DALY (NBC) - (repeat)
THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART (COMEDY CENTRAL) - (repeat)
THE COLBERT REPORT (COMEDY CENTRAL) - (repeat)
CONAN - (repeat)
WEDNESDAY
CBS
  • CRIMINAL MINDS (repeat)
  • THE 35TH ANNUAL KENNEDY CENTER HONORS - Entertainers receive recognition in the annual ceremony; honorees include Buddy Guy, Dustin Hoffman and Led Zeppelin; Caroline Kennedy hosts.
NBC
  • WHITNEY (repeat)
  • GUYS WITH KIDS (repeat)
  • LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT (repeat)
  • CHICAGO FIRE (repeat)
FOX
  • BEN AND KATE (repeat)
  • BEN AND KATE (repeat)
  • BEN AND KATE (repeat)
  • BEN AND KATE (repeat)
ABC
  • THE MIDDLE (repeat)
  • THE NEIGHBORS (repeat)
  • MODERN FAMILY (repeat)
  • SUBURGATORY (repeat)
  • NASHVILLE (repeat)
CW
  • ARROW (repeat)
  • SUPERNATURAL (repeat)
DAY TIME TALK SHOW
THE ELLEN DEGENERES SHOW - (repeat)
THE VIEW - (repeat)
KATIE COURIC - (repeat)
LATE NIGHT TALK SHOWS
THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN (CBS) - (repeat)
THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO (NBC) - (repeat)
JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE (ABC) - (repeat)
THE LATE LATE SHOW WITH CRAIG FERGUSON (CBS) - (repeat)
LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON (NBC) - (repeat)
LAST CALL WITH CARSON DALY (NBC) - (repeat)
THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART (COMEDY CENTRAL) - (repeat)
THE COLBERT REPORT (COMEDY CENTRAL) - (repeat)
CONAN - (repeat)

OFF BEAT BRIEFS

DOGS CHASE WOULD-BE PRESENT THIEF OUT OF THE HOUSE: Pet dogs in Gainesville, Florida saved the day by chasing a would-be burglar out of the house before the the Christmas presents were stolen. The homeowners were asleep upstairs when 36-year-old Timothy Devon Lawrence broke into their home at around three in the morning -- allegedly, to steal Christmas gifts. Police said the owner's dogs began to bark, and when she opened the door the pooches rushed down the steps and chased the burglar out of the house. The victim called police who employed their own canines to track the suspect's scent to another residence where Lawrence had allegedly also tried to break in. After police found him hiding in the bushes, they charged him with burglary, grand theft and possession of a concealed firearm.
JOKE TEXT ABOUT BANK ROBBERY LEADS TO 911 CALL: A Chicago-area teen who texted her mom a joke, about being stuck at a bank with two escaped, armed robbers, scared the mother into calling 911. Police said the teen and her mom were having a text conversation when the girl texted that she was going to the bank. The mother then warned her that she should be careful of two convicted bank robbers who had recently escaped from federal prison in downtown Chicago. The teen, obviously tempted by the warning, texted back "They're here, they have guns." Not realizing the joke, the mom called 911. Police responded to the bank in full force, only to find that everything was OK.
12 GIFTS FOR THE END OF THE WORLD: http://bit.ly/WxyhaA (Pulse note: Our favorite gift on this list is a 2013 Mayan Calendar - http://www.mayan-calendar.com/)
LIST OF DATES PREDICTED FOR APOCALYPTIC EVENTS: http://bit.ly/T1susO
MASHABLE'S PICKS FOR 21 FUNNIEST PRE-DECEMBER-21ST TWEETS: http://on.mash.to/TaeNFG
NASA'S FAQ RESPONSE TO THE DOOMSDAY QUESTION: In the Frequently Asked Questions section on NASA's website -- under the subject of "Earth" -- NASA answers a popular question, regarding end-of-the-world predictions related to the Mayan Calendar. The question reads: "Does the Mayan calendar end in December 2012? NASA posts the following response: "Just as the calendar you have on your kitchen wall does not cease to exist after December 31, the Mayan calendar does not cease to exist on December 21, 2012. This date is the end of the Mayan long-count period but then -- just as your calendar begins again on January 1 -- another long-count period begins for the Mayan calendar."
CHECK IT OUT

  • NASA "Beyond 2012: Why The World Won't End" -http://1.usa.gov/V0LG6C
'MAYANS' AND 'ENDOFTHEWORLDCONFESSIONS' TREND ON TWITTER AT MIDNIGHT: In other news, just after midnight a few doomsday related topics started trending on Twitter: "Mayans" and "EndOfTheWorldConfessions." Most of the confessions were innocent, like one @callie1218 who tweeted, "#endoftheworldconfessions I used to look at peoples feet when I played heads up seven up... Still feel a bit guilty about it" while some actually went for it, admitting to secret hookups. Several Twitters users used the hashtag to warn their followers that real, non-comedic confessions should probably be kept to a minimum since we'll all still be here to deal with the embarrassment of any serious confessions.

THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW

THE TOP WORRIES OF PEOPLE WHO WERE AFRAID THE WORLD MIGHT END TODAY: A Harris Interactive Poll commissioned by California online data-storage company Backblaze finds that one in five of those polled were "somewhat concerned" about the apocalypse happening today, and nearly 70-percent were worried about losing digital copies of family photos in case the power was to go out permanently. The poll also found that one in four men said they would regret not having more sex if the world were to end, while only one in ten women said the same. (LA Weekly Blog)
14 BEST CRAIGSLIST ADS OF THE APOCALYPSE: http://tinyurl.com/bsqbn9n
WOMEN SPEND TWO WEEKS PER YEAR CLEANING: New research commissioned by British company, Bloo Flowers toilet fresheners, finds that "house-proud" women spend two-weeks-per-year cleaning from age 18 on. The study of two-thousand women revealed that 70-percent consider themselves to be house-proud, and 86-percent admitted they spend more time cleaning if they know guests are coming to visit. Two-thirds of those surveyed said they spend over three extra hours on household chores throughout December. More than half of the women surveyed said they would most dread their mother-in-law seeing their house in a less-than-perfect state. (Daily Mail)
SOLO ARTISTS MORE LIKELY TO DIE PREMATURELY THAN THOSE IN BANDS: According to research from the University of Liverpool, famous solo artists are twice as likely to die prematurely as musicians in bands. The research was publish in the online journal BMJ Open, and says that solo artists in Europe have a one in ten chance of premature death, while American solo artists have a one in five chance of the same. The research states that in the U.S., solo musicians have about a 23-percent increased risk of dying prematurely, compared with just about a 10-percent increased risk for musicians in bands. The research for Europe found that solo artists have about a 10-percent increased risk in early death, while those in bands have just about a five-percent increased risk. Researchers theorize that bands provide a mutual support mechanism that offers protective health effects. (Daily Mail)
TEN LESSONS ABOUT MEETING THE FAMILY YOU CAN LEARN FROM MOVIES (Tres Sugar):
1) Do: Make a Second Impression. In the movie Fever Pitch Ben makes a poor first impression with Lindsey's parents by freaking out at dinner when he thinks he'll overhear the score to the Red Sox game he DVRd at home. So he treats them to a golf game the next day scoring major points and erasing the initial meeting fail.
2) Don't: Go Overboard With the P-D-A: In Father of the Bride, George was having a tough enough time learning his daughter was engaged to the man he's meeting for the first time - the PDA just made it doubly awkward. Keep the affection to a minimum around the family, especially the first time you meet them!
3) Do: 'Fess Up to Accidents. Greg is doing his best to make a good impression on his future dad-to-be in Meet the Parents, but his bad luck leads to disaster after disaster. But things just get worse when he tries to cover up his accidents, like replacing the family's cat with a stray who ends up destroying the house. Honesty is the best policy!
4) Don't: Get Too Close to Your Brother-in-Law. Madeleine is just trying to help when she offers to tutor her husband's married brother after meeting the family for the first time in Junebug. But he thinks she's flirting and goes in for a kiss. Try not to send mixed messages, they can lead to disaster
5) Do: Be a Good Sport. When Andie meets Ben's family for the first time in How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days she jumps right into their game of bullsh*t. It loosens everyone up right off the bat and she feels like a part of family by the end of the game.
6) Don't: Be Too Uptight. Jack is a neurotic New Yorker meeting his French girlfriend Marion's eccentric family in 2 Days in Paris. But between the language barrier and Marion's parents' laissez-faire attitude, Jack is too uptight and uncomfortable to relax and enjoy the trip. When you're facing a culturally different family, sometimes you just have to go with the flow for the sake of your significant other.
7) Do: Be Yourself. In The Birdcage, Val invites his fiancée Barbara's conservative senator father and his uptight wife for dinner at his parents' home in Miami. The only problem is that Val's parents are two gay men who own a South Beach drag club. To avoid any controversy, one of Val's dads decides to dress in drag and pretend to be Val's mother. The dinner is a disaster, albeit a hilarious one, and once the wig comes off, the jig is up. But after Val and Barbara explain their motives, the conservative parents understand and forgive Val and his two dads, proving you should just be yourself.
8) Don't: Forget to Set Ground Rules. In Failure to Launch, 35-year-old Tripp lives with his parents who are home when he and Paula arrive there for a date. Even though Tripp is using the "accidental" meeting to freak Paula out so she'll break up with him, if you really lived with your parents you'd want to make sure they knew not to interrupt your date (and spill the beans that you live with them)!
9) Do: Be Understanding. When Jamie meets Dylan's dad who's suffering with Alzheimer's disease in Friends With Benefits, she's super accepting of Dylan and his family, just the way they are. Now that's a keeper!
10) Don't: Forget Who You're Dating. In The Family Stone, Meredith meets boyfriend Everett's family for the first time and things don't go according to plan. By the end of the flick there are some unexpected couplings, which works out in the movie, but probably wouldn't in real life.

EIGHT STEPS FOR FINDING LOVE IN THE NEW YEAR (Your Tango):

1) Be ready for love. Be emotionally in a space where you're open to love. If you're holding a grudge from your former relationship - whatever it may be - trust, anger or disappointment, you need to let go of that or at least resolve it in your head so you don't bring those negative feelings into your new relationship.
2) Know what you want from your love life. Do you want to date different men? Are you looking for something casual? Or are you looking to get married? It helps to know what you want because this way you won't be wasting your time dating people you know aren't clearly right for you.
3) Be willing to accept a little imperfection. Some people - both men and women - set their standards so high that they never find anyone who can meet them and then they wonder why they are alone. (Just be careful that you don't settle too much - if you're sacrificing too much of yourself for the sake of your relationship, then that's not good either.)
4) Get out there and meet people. Prince charming is not going to come and knock on your door regardless of how fabulous you are - he needs to know you are there. Attend events and take classes where there are likely to be men attending - a sailing class or a co-ed softball team are good places to start. Your local newspaper usually lists events in your area that are currently going on - take a peek and try to figure out where some men may be.
5) Ask your girlfriends to see if they know of anyone who may be right for you. Friends are a great way to meet people because it's like an automatic screening procedure.
6) Go online. A recent statistic states that 1 in 5 relationships start online now. Just be careful with this one and follow your instincts - we have them for a reason. If something doesn't feel right about what the person is telling you, then it probably isn't. Meet within three months to see if you're compatible in person.
7) Be a great date. A first date won't lead to a second if you're not a great date. Be interesting, be funny, look your best and leave your negativity and fussiness at home. Men will find you more attractive if you have a generally pleasant disposition - I know of very few men who like dating a diva.
8) Don't give up. Just because you haven't met anyone by March, doesn't mean you won't mean anyone by June. The only way you won't meet anyone for sure is if you stop trying.

DOG PULLS BABY ON A SLED: http://tinyurl.com/cphbtar

COMPUTER ALGORITHM DETERMINES LIES FROM TRUTH ON TWITTER: Chilean researchers have designed a new algorithm that aims to automate the sorting of tweets into true and false categories. According to researchers Carlos Castillo, Barbara Poblete and Marcelo Mendoza there are certain characteristics that can show if news tweet is true or false. Researchers say that true tweets are usually sent out by users with a large number of followers, are longer, and are more likely to contain U-R-Ls, while false tweets usually have concentrated question and exclamation marks, and frequently use first and third person pronouns. Researchers tested their algorithm on a cluster of tweets generated in the 24-hours during and directly after the Chilean earthquake, and the algorithm chose the true tweet over the false tweet 82-percent of the time. (Huffington Post)
TIPS FOR KEEPING HOLIDAY MEALS HEALTHIER (Fox News):

1) Banish Butter and Bring on Broth. Avoid drowning your healthy vegetables in saturated fat like butter. It may taste good, but high-fat meals trigger heartburn, so quickly sauté your vegetables in low-sodium, low-fat vegetable or chicken broth for the same kind of flavor without the effects.
2) Do Without the Deep-Fryer. Why fry your turkey? It's like frying an Oreo. A deep-fried turkey contains double the fat of a regular roasted turkey, so get back to basics and do as our ancestors did. Roast the bird and use garlic, thyme, rosemary, and other herbs to flavor the feast rather than a vat of grease.
3) Choose Cinnamon. Because cinnamon is a great way to lower your blood sugar, try serving side dishes or desserts with a teaspoon or two of cinnamon to bring down your count.
4) Slim the Sugar. An easy way to make your holiday desserts healthier is to decrease sugar quantities by 25 to 50 percent. If a family favorite calls for 2 cups of sugar, decrease it to 1 cup of sugar and add fresh fruits like berries to make up the difference. You'll be adding a healthier, all-natural version of sugar, and the berries will also give you antioxidants.
??? TRIVIA ???
When was the first Christmas card created?
A: The first Christmas cards were illustrated by John Callcott Horsley in London on the 1st of May 1843
Source: Wikipedia
What does the term "humbug" really mean?
A; The word "humbug" describes deceitful efforts to fool people by pretending to a fake loftiness or false sincerity.
Source: IMDB

WATER COOLER TALK


Newtown Seventh-Grader Launches Effort to Dump Violent Video Games
It's not just adults who are determined to take action after the horror of the Newtown massacre, as local New York City TV station WCBS discovered after meeting a Newtown seventh-grader who's launching an effort to dump violent video games, which have been drawing critical attention since the mass killing. Max Goldstein has gathered up his own "first-person shooter" video games and will be getting rid of them, telling the station, "All of it is kill, just kill as many people as you can without dying." He also spoke about the victims' families, saying, "I really think it's rude and disrespectful to the families, who lost children, to play all these games." With his parents help, Goldstein and his brother created a group called "Played Out" that uses the slogan, "We choose not to play." It urges other kids to get rid of their violent video games too, and bins will be set up in Newtown starting today for their disposal. Goldstein said his goal is to reduce violent video games by one-third in American homes.

Is the Internet Killing the Christmas Card Tradition?
Does it seem like you've been getting fewer Christmas cards in recent years than you used to? Nina Burleigh wrote recently in Time magazine that sending Christmas cards is yet another tradition that's being killed off by the Internet, saying sadly, "There's little point to writing a Christmas update now, with boasts about grades and athletic prowess, hospitalizations and holidays, and the dog's mishaps, when we have already posted these events and so much more of our minutiae all year long." But Alexis Madrigal writes in The Atlantic that we may be writing the obituary of the Christmas card tradition prematurely. The research firm IBISWorld forecasts that sales of cards and postage will be the highest it's been in five years this holiday season, and industry giant Hallmark has seen revenue hold steady since the early 2000s. Madrigal argues in fact that the desire to share our lives has conquered, moving beyond just a Christmas card to something we now do all the time. The Week magazine sums up the argument: "The spirit of the Christmas card is indeed alive and well. It's just not necessarily in a Christmas card."

Some Neighbors Unhappy About California Woman's Amazing Christmas Display
One of the festive traditions of the Christmas season is houses decorated with holiday lights. But some neighbors think one Orange County, California, woman has gone too far with the $50,000 light and music display at her home, local TV station KCAL reports. Hundreds of spectators have been showing up at Jan Stewart's Fountain Valley home to look at the display, which features 65,600 LED lights and plays carols and other music. In the face of complaints from neighbors who say the display is too loud, too bright and brings too much traffic to the neighborhood, Stewart defends it, saying it's a tribute to her late husband, whose face can be seen in lights as part of the display. Some have complained about Stewart's home to the City Council, but she's only gotten a noise violation ticket.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

KFLAG COUNTRY MUSIC UPDATE

Lee Brice wants to record a Christmas album that is a mix of covers and new material. He tells The Boot, "For me, I would want to make a Christmas record that was as fresh or as good as if it was a regular album, and not necessarily a Christmas album."
He continued, "There would be a few classics on there that I would cut my own way, maybe in a way that hadn't been cut before, or recorded. And I definitely would want to write some stuff that nobody has heard before; so it would probably be about half [new] and half [traditional]."
  • Though he hasn't figured out the specifics Lee said he would want the album to be "outside the box," adding, "You have to go down other avenues to make something fresh. It's difficult."
  • Lee said the Christmas album is on his to-do list for 2013.
  • He also plans to release a new studio album next year.
Alan Jackson says Christmas with his family is pretty traditional. He explained, "We don't let anybody open any presents until Christmas morning, after Santa Claus comes. We don't let them get up on their own and take off. Everybody has to wait and kind of get situated and maybe have a cup of coffee."
He continued, "Then we start all of the regular Christmas morning activities, opening presents, taking pictures and video. I try to keep Christmas music going in the background. I like to turn that on before I let them come down to the tree and everything."
SIDE NOTE
  • Alan Jackson has three daughters with his wife, Denise Jackson.
CHECK IT OUT
  • Looking to start some new traditions with your own family? Here are some ideas! http://bit.ly/fA3WSg

Little Big Town's Kimberly Schlapman told us about her favorite family Christmas tradition.
She said, "My favorite holiday tradition is, it's happened every year that I can remember that I've been alive. We would go over to my grandmother's house and have Christmas over there, and everybody would come home to Mama and Daddy's house. We'd sit down and Mama hands out everybody a gift, and we act like we don't what it is, but we do, 'cause it's always Christmas pajamas. So, everybody opens their Christmas pajamas and goes and puts 'em on, and we come back to the living room and we sit around Daddy and he reads The Christmas Story. And we tuck ourselves in until Santa comes.

Gary Allen has revealed the art work, track listing and release date for his new record, Set You Free. The album is set to drop on January 22. Allan reportedly produced some of the tracks himself as well as some new co-writers. The album is a bit of a lyrical departure for the singer.
  • Gary said, ["You can expect a lot of honesty and a lot of songs about life. It's gonna roll you through a break-up and roll you through the anger and the healing and wind you up good as new. I think what you can expect is something a little bit different musically out of this, but it's still got the common thread."

Gary Allan Set You Free Track Listing:
1. "Tough Goodbye"
2. "Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain)"
3. "Bones"
4. "It Ain't the Whiskey"
5. "Sand in My Soul"
6. "You Without Me"
7. "One More Time"
8. "Hungover Heart"
9. "No Worries"
10. "Drop"
11. "Pieces"
12. "Good as New"
FAST FACTS
  • Gary co-wrote five of the 12 songs on the record, including his current Top 10 single, "Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain)."
  • It's his first project in nearly 3 years
  • He has shows scheduled in Reno, Nevada on December 30th and Las Vegas on New Year's Eve.
Luke Bryan and Jason Aldean -- who are both owners of Buck Commander, a hunting lifestyle website -- have had the company's logo tattooed on their biceps. Photos of their new ink appeared on the company website, but Jason has been quick to point out that they didn't exactly get "matching" tattoos as several sites have reported.
Jason clarified on Twitter, "To set the record straight, me and @LukeBryanOnline did NOT get matching tattoos!! We were the only 2 @buck_commander owners to not have one."
CHECK IT OUT
  • See their tattoo pics here (Photos taken from the Buck Commander website. Pulse does not own these photos!):




KEITH URBAN RELEASES ANNUAL CALENDAR TO BENEFIT ST JUDE'S: Keith Urban's annual fundraising calendar which benefits St. Jude's Research Hospital is now available! The 2013 calendar, featuring fan-submitted photos of the singer, costs $15. Keith started the calendar back in 2002 and has been able to raise more than $750,000 for St. Jude's through the project.
JUSTIN MOORE BEGINS RECORDING NEW ALBUM: Justin Moore is excited to be in the studio recording his third studio album. He tweeted on Wednesday (December 19th), "Day 1 recording album #3! Can't wait to get new music out for y'all."
SARAH BUXTON IS A MOM! Sarah and her husband Tom Bukovac welcomed their first child earlier this month, on December 4th. The singer tweeted this week, "Tom and I are in love with our sweet baby boy, Marshall! He came December 4th. My little Sagittarius."
SUGARLAND'S KRISTIAN BUSH HAS HOLIDAY SUGGESTIONS: Having a tough time finding gifts for your loved ones? Kristian Bush can help with his "Awesome Huge Lists of 2012 Holiday Gifts." The Sugarland singer posted a giant list of gifts that includes everything from toys and gadgets to audio gear and perfume that smells like snow. Kristian's full list is on Sugarland's official website.
CHECK OUT SCOTTY MCCREERY'S MUSIC VIDEO FOR 'CHRISTMAS COMIN ROUND AGAIN':


COUNTRY TRIVIA
Q. What star's first band was named Unclethumbtack?A. Rascal Flatts' Joe Don Rooney

ON THE TUBE
CMA MUSIC FESTIVAL CONCERT SPECIAL/GAC 5:00PM (ET)
Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Kix Brooks, Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Brantley Gilbert, Hunter Hayes, Faith Hill, Alan Jackson, Lady Antebellum, Miranda Lambert
ACM GIRLS NIGHT OUT: SUPERSTAR WOMEN OF COUNTRY/GAC 8:00PM (ET)
Rascal Flatts, Reba, The Judds, Martina McBride, Carrie Underwood
BACKSTORY: BLAKE SHELTON/GAC 10:00PM (ET)

CELEBRATING BIRTHDAYS


  • David Cook (singer, 2008 American Idol winner) (30)
  • Michael Badalucco (actor, The Practice's Jimmy Berluti) (58)
  • Uri Geller (celebrity psychic, famous for psychically bending spoons and keys) (66)
  • John Hillerman (actor, Paper Moon, Blazing Saddles, Magnum, P.I.) (80)
  • Chris Robinson (lead singer, the Black Crowes) (46)
  • Larry Willis (keyboardist in the 1970s for Blood, Sweat & Tears) (70, disputed)
  • Bobby Colomby (drummer, Blood, Sweat & Tears, and jazz producer) (68)
  • Peter Criss (former drummer, Kiss) (67)
  • Alan Parsons (musician-producer-engineer, the Alan Parsons Project) (64)
  • Anita Ward (disco singer, "Ring My Bell") (55, disputed)
  • JoJo (pop singer) (22)
  • Jonah Hill (actor, Superbad, The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Moneyball, Get Him to the Greek, The Sitter) (29)

INDUSTRY NEWS


'HOMELAND' IS LOOKING FOR NEW WRITERS: Showrunner Alex Gansa is looking for new writers for his hit show Homeland since three current writers have new projects in the works. Gansa says he will begin brainstorming season three in January.
ZAC POSEN REPLACING MICHAEL KORS ON 'PROJECT RUNWAY': Zac Posen has been picked to replace Michael Kors as a judge on season 11 of Project Runway. Posen previously appeared on the show as a guest judge in the third and fourth season.
BRYAN SINGER TO REBOOT 'THE TWILIGHT ZONE': Director Bryan Singer is developing a remake of The Twilight Zone for CBS. A remake of the show was previously attempted back in 1985 and then again in 2002.
JACKIE CHAN SIGNS ON FOR 'EXPENDABLES 3': Jackie Chan has accepted a role in the third Expendables film. He is also reportedly eyeing a new project with Rush Hour costar Chris Tucker.
MTV RENEWS 'CATFISH' FOR SEASON TWO: MTV has announced plans to bring back their reality show Catfish for a second season. The show is based on the 2010 film.

CELEBRITY GOSSIP


JAMES MARSDEN WELCOMES SON: James Marsden has become a father for the third time. His son William Luca was born on December 14th.
SAM DONALDSON ARRESTED FOR DUI: ABC newsman Sam Donaldson was arrested in Delaware earlier this month after failing a sobriety test when he was pulled over for driving on the shoulder of the road. The 78-year-old was reportedly very cooperative during the incident.
SIMON COWELL AND CARMEN ELECTRA ARE DATING: Simon Cowell revealed to Ryan Seacrest on Wednesday (December 19th) that he is dating Carmen Electra. The pair got close while working on Britain's Got Talent where she appeared as a guest judge.
JUDD APATOW ADDRESSES CHILD MURDER JOKE IN 'THIS IS 40': Judd Apatow has said that a scene in his new film This Is 40 containing jokes about child murder was written nearly two years ago. The scene will reportedly not be taken out of the film despite last week's tragedy in Connecticut.
CLAIRE DANES AND HUGH DANCY WELCOME FIRST CHILD: Homeland actress Claire Danes has given birth to her first child. She and husband Hugh Dancy have named their son Cyrus Michael Christopher Dancy.

JAMES FRANCO RELEASING BOOK OF POETRY


Spiderman actor James Franco is working on a book of poetry that will be released in April, 2014 by Graywolf Press. He has been writing lyrical verses which have been brought together in a collection called "Directing Herbert White."
Franco described his work to the NY Times as "a way to blend film and poetry and performance and persona -- all the things that I think are related to that poem and that process I went through of adapting that poem."

  • The poetry editor of Graywolf Press called the actor's work "a frank and illuminating set of scenes from inside filmmaking and fame."
  • James holds two masters of fine arts degrees. One in creative writing from Brooklyn College and one in poetry from Warren Wilson College in North Carolina. He has previously published a collection of short stories called "Palo Alto."
  • Franco portrayed poets Allen Ginsberg in the film Howl and Hart Crane in The Broken Tower.
CHECK IT OUT:

OPRAH TALKS 'OWN' SUCCESS


Oprah Winfrey has opened up the ratings turnaround of her OWN Network. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Oprah said that she isn't out of the woods just yet. She explained, "I'm not doing the hula yet ...but compared to a year ago, it feels like a sigh of relief."
She continued, "Part of my own expectation was, 'You've had 25 years of success; people will leverage that.' But we didn't account for people not having the channel, and not knowing how to find it, and the cable audience being different from broadcast."

  • Oprah started OWN in 2010.
CHECK IT OUT

'TWILIGHT' ACTOR SAYS HE WAS SET UP


Twilight actor Bronson Pelletier told TMZ that he was set up when he was kicked off of an airplane for being too intoxicated. He also denied that he urinated in the terminal.
A cameraman for the website asked Pelletier to explain the events that led up to his arrest to which he responded saying, "The same guy that bought me drinks was the guy that got me taken off the plane!" He also claims that nothing else happened after being kicked off the flight despite reports that he was arrested for public urination.

  • According to TMZ, Bronson was also arrested on December 8th at a West Hollywood gay bar for public intoxication. Police reportedly found cocaine and meth in his possession but the actor denies this event took place
  • Bronson played Jared, a member of the werewolf tribe, in four of the Twilight films.
CHECK IT OUT:

25 FILMS ADDED TO NATIONAL FILM REGISTRY


The Library of Congress has selected the 25 films that will be added to the National Film Registry this year. Each film has been selected for its cultural, artistic, and historic achievement in filmmaking. This year's picks include Breakfast At Tiffany's, Dirty Harry, A Christmas Story, and A League Of Their Own. Librarian of Congress James H. Billington explained their choices saying, "These films are not selected as the 'best' American films of all time, but rather as works of enduring importance to American culture. They reflect who we are as a people and as a nation."

  • The Complete List of 25 Films: http://1.usa.gov/R5eLPG
  • With this year's additions, there are now 600 films in the registry.
CHECK IT OUT:

HEADLINE NEWS

FUNERALS CONTINUE AFTER NEWTOWN MASSACRE: The process of burying the dead from from last week's Newtown massacre continued on Wednesday (December 19th), with at least nine funerals and wakes held. Among them were funerals for six-year-old Caroline Previdi, seven-year-old Daniel Barden and six-year-old Charlotte Helen Bacon. Also laid to rest were teacher Victoria Soto, who's been hailed as hero for trying to shield her students, and Sandy Hook Elementary School Principal Dawn Hochsprung, who was killed as she lunged at the gunman to try to stop him. Meanwhile, the New York Daily News reported that in the days before the massacre, Nancy Lanza, the mother of shooter Adam Lanza, who was the first person he killed, was pushing her son to get out of the house, citing a family friend, who said, "He sat in his room playing video games for hours and hours. She thought the best thing was for him to get out of the house and into the world. To interact with people a little bit." But, the friend said, the 20-year-old refused and stopped speaking to his mother, and the two hadn't spoken for three days when he shot and killed her. The friend said Nancy Lanza had brought her son to a psychiatrist as he became increasingly anti-social, stating, "She told me she couldn't reach him -- and she was worried." The friend also rejected a FoxNews.com report that Nancy was planning to have her son committed to a psychiatric facility, stating, "Nancy was so dedicated to Adam. She would never send him away. She just couldn't do that."
In other news:

  • In a development that's sadly common after tragedies and disasters, scammers are trying to make money from the massacre, setting up bogus charities and making fake solicitations for donations for the families of the dead.
  • Another not unexpected development has been a spate of copycat threats against schools around the nation, including from teens in Indiana, California and Tennessee. It's common for threats against schools to spike after a highly-publicized shooting, and research has suggested there may be a link between how much media attention an incident gets and how many copycat threats follow.

OBAMA TO SEND CONGRESS GUN PROPOSALS IN JANUARY: President Obama said Wednesday (December 19th) that he will send broad proposals to Congress in January for tightening gun laws and curbing violence in the wake of the Newtown massacre. But even ahead of that happening, Obama urged lawmakers to reinstate a ban on military-style assault weapons, close loopholes that allow gun buyers to get around background checks, and restrict high-capacity ammunition clips. Obama put longtime gun control advocate Vice President Joe Biden in charge of overseeing the process of creating those proposals, with officials also set to look beyond the gun issue at ways to increase mental health resources and keep society from glamorizing guns and violence.
OBAMA, BOEHNER SWAP BARBS AS FISCAL CLIFF AT APPARENT STANDOFF: After promising moves towards reaching a deal in recent days, with both sides making compromises, the fiscal cliffs are at an apparent standoff again, with President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner swapping barbs on Wednesday (December 19th). Speaking at the White House, Obama said Republicans should, quote, "peel off the war paint" and take the deal he's offering, and he threatened to veto a "Plan B" bill drafted by House Republicans that would allow the Bush tax cuts to expire only for those making more than $1 million a year. Boehner shot back that if that happens, Obama will be responsible for, quote, "the largest tax increase in history." At the same time, both left the door open for further negotiations.
STATE DEPT. SECURITY HEAD, THREE OTHERS, RESIGN AFTER BENGHAZI REPORT: Four State Department officials resigned under pressure Wednesday (December 19th), including the head of diplomatic security, one day after a report from an independent review panel blamed management failures for a lack of security at the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, where militants killed the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans in September. In addition to Eric Boswell, the assistant secretary of state for diplomatic security, also stepping down were two others in the bureau of diplomatic security and one in the bureau of Near East Affairs. The report had called the security precautions in Benghazi, quote, "grossly inadequate."
GOV'T. TO SELL REMAINING STAKE IN GENERAL MOTORS: The Treasury Department said Wednesday (December 19th) that it will sell its remaining stake in General Motors by early 2014, closing out the $50 billion bailout that saved the automaking icon. However, even though GM has bounced back and made $16 billion in profits over the past three years, AP reports that taxpayers will still lose billions of dollars in the deal. Under the deal, GM will spend $5.5 billion to buy back 200 million shares from the Treasury, with the sale closing before the end of this year. That will leave the government with 300 million shares, or a 19 percent stake, which it plans to sell during the next 12 to 15 months. The Treasury Department has held the stock for more than two years while awaiting a better price.
ARMY TO SEEK DEATH PENALTY FOR SOLIDER ACCUSED OF KILLING 16 AFGHAN VILLAGERS: The U.S. Army said Wednesday (December 19th) that it will seek the death penalty against the 39-year-old soldier accused of killing 16 Afghan villagers in a March rampage, nine of whom were children. Prosecutors say Staff Sergeant Robert Bales left his remote Afghanistan base early on March 11th and attacked one village, then returned to the base, slipped away again, and attacked a second village. Bales' civilian lawyer, John Henry Browne, denounced the decision against his client, who was on his fourth deployment after three previous ones in Iraq. Browne told AP, "The Army is not taking responsibility for Sgt. Bales and other soldiers that the Army knowingly sends into combat situations with diagnosed PTSD, concussive head injuries and other injuries. The Army is trying to take the focus off the failure of its decisions, and the failure of the war itself, and making Sgt. Bales out to be a rogue soldier."
  • The U.S. military has not executed anyone since 1961.
TODAY'S FYI:
STUDY: TEEN SMOKING FALLS TO RECORD LOW: An annual survey out yesterday (December 19th) from the National Institute on Drug Abuse found that cigarette smoking among teens in the U.S. fell to a record low in 2012, with 10.6 percent of eighth-, 10th-, and 12-graders surveyed saying they'd smoked in the prior 30 days, down by just over a percentage point from a year earlier. The study's principal investigator said that the one percentage point drop amounts to about a nine percent reduction in a single year in the number of teens currently smoking. It's believed a sharp hike in federal cigarette taxes played a role, and health advocates also pointed to federal curbs on youth-targeted tobacco marketing and sales, and a sweeping anti-smoking media campaign. Researchers did cite concerns, however, over new forms of smokeless tobacco, including dissolvable products like Camel's "Orbs" and "Strips," and a form of snuff called snus, which is placed under the upper lip.
ROBERT BORK, REJECTED BY SENATE FOR SUPREME COURT, DEAD AT 85: Robert Bork, the conservative American judge who was rejected by the Senate for the U.S. Supreme Court by an historic margin, died Wednesday (December 19th) at a Virginia hospital where he'd been treated for an infection. He was 85. After being nominated for the Supreme Court in 1987 by President Ronald Reagan, Bork was rejected by the Democratic-led Senate due to his conservative judicial philosophy, particularly because of the concern that he'd vote to overturn abortion rights. The 58-42 vote against him was the largest margin of defeat for any nominee to the nation's highest court ever. Bork, who was bitter for many years afterward, became a conservative hero, and his name was turned into a verb, added to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2002 with the definition for "to bork" being: "To defame or vilify systematically, especially in the mass media, usually with the aim of preventing his or her appointment to public office." In 2011, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney appointed Bork co-chair of his Judicial Advisory Committee, to advise the campaign on judicial nominations and legal policy questions.
MISS USA OLIVIA CULPO CROWNED MISS UNIVERSE: Miss USA Olivia Culpo, a 20-year-old Boston University student from Rhode Island, was crowned Miss Universe last night (December 19th) in Las Vegas, becoming the first U.S. winner of the title since 1997. Culpo, who's also an accomplished cello player, beat out 88 other contestants from six continents, with Miss Philippines Janine Tugonon coming in second, and Miss Venezuela Irene Sofia Esser Quintero third. After the competition, Culpo told reporters she hoped to bring the country some good news in the wake of the deadly school shooting in Connecticut, saying, "It's such an honor to be representing the USA in an international beauty contest in spite of all the tragedy that's happened in this country lately. I really hope that this this will raise everybody's spirits a little."
CHECK IT OUT:
LAUNCH SENDING THREE ASTRONAUTS TO SPACE STATION: A Soyuz spacecraft was launched Wednesday (December 19th) in Kazakhstan, with one American, one Russian and one Canadian on board, headed for the International Space Station. The three astronauts will join three others already on board, and spend four months at the orbiting outpost conducting more than 50 scientific experiments.

SPORTS:
REPORT: JETS LOOKING TO DROP BOTH SANCHEZ AND TEBOW: The New York Jets are not only likely to get rid of backup quarterback Tim Tebow in the offseason, but are considering parting ways with starter Mark Sanchez too, Yahoo! Sports' Jason Cole reported last night (December 19th), citing two sources he described as "familiar with the circumstances." Tebow's lack of a future with the Jets, who acquired him in the last offseason from the Denver Broncos, has been made seemingly clear by head coach Rex Ryan's decision to start third-stringer Greg McElroy instead of him this coming Sunday against the San Diego Chargers after benching the struggling Sanchez. As for Sanchez, who's coming to the end of his fourth season, Cole cited a league source critical of his lack of development, saying, "I thought he would have been better by now."
(Headline News, FYI and Sports stories were compiled in part from reports by the Associated Press and Reuters.)

ON THE TUBE


CBS

  • THE BIG BANG THEORY (repeat)
  • TWO AND A HALF MEN (repeat)
  • PERSON OF INTEREST (repeat)
  • ELEMENTARY (repeat)
NBC
  • A WHITE HOUSE CHRISTMAS: FIRST FAMILIES REMEMBER - First families share holiday memories from their time in the White House; the staff prepares for the holiday season.
  • THE OFFICE (repeat)
  • PARKS AND RECREATION (repeat)
  • ROCK CENTER WITH BRIAN WILLIAMS - Investigative reporting.
FOX
  • THE X FACTOR - (season finale) Khloe and Mario announce the winner; performances slated by One Direction and Pitbull.
ABC
  • I WANT A DOG FOR CHRISTMAS, CHARLIE BROWN (repeat)
  • CMA COUNTRY CHRISTMAS - Country music stars share their favorite holiday traditions and memories; Jennifer Nettles hosts.
CW
  • THE VAMPIRE DIARIES (repeat)
  • BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (repeat)
BRAVO
  • THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF MIAMI - (season finale) The weather keeps the ladies in Bimini.
FX
  • IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA - (season finale) Frank and Dennis present their cases to the rest of the gang at Paddy's.
  • THE LEAGUE - Andre and Trixie's relationship is put to the test; Taco challenges the mall Santa.
DAY TIME TALK SHOW
THE ELLEN DEGENERES SHOW - Jamie Foxx, Rosemarie DeWitt
THE VIEW - Bette Midler, Billy Crystal, Bailee Madison, Dr. Doris Day
KATIE COURIC - TBA
LATE NIGHT TALK SHOWS
THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN (CBS) - Katie Holmes, Jon Bon Jovi
THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO (NBC) - Johnny Mathis
JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE (ABC) -
THE LATE LATE SHOW WITH CRAIG FERGUSON (CBS) - Quentin Tarantino
LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON (NBC) - Billy Crystal, Tyson Chandler, Cee-Lo Green
LAST CALL WITH CARSON DALY (NBC) - Ed Burns, "The Impossible", the Features
THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART (COMEDY CENTRAL) - (repeat)
THE COLBERT REPORT (COMEDY CENTRAL) - (repeat)
CONAN - Paul Rudd, Rita Wilson, Ben Gibbard

OFF BEAT BRIEFS

BEAUTY QUEEN GETS DUI; CAUSES MASSIVE POWER OUTAGE: The reigning Miss Las Cruces of New Mexico was arrested on Sunday (December 16th) and charged with aggravated DWI after she crashed into a light pole which then fell onto a traffic light and ended up knocking out power to hundreds of local homes and businesses. Police arrested 22-year-old Sarah J. Richardson who, incidentally, snapped a mug shot worthy of a beauty queen. Miss Las Cruces officials are in the process of figuring out how to handle the situation. (AP)
CHECK IT OUT

LOTTO WINNERS TO USE WINNINGS TO BUILD HIGH SCHOOL STADIUM: A couple in Bondurant, Iowa who recently won a $202 million Powerball jackpot have pledged three million dollars of their winnings to build a new stadium for Bondurant-Farrar High School. The only thing Brian and Mary Lohse want in return is for the visiting team's locker room to be painted pink. Mary explained, "I was sort of half joking and half not I suppose, but they said they'd do it. It's supposed to put them in a certain soft frame of mind... it will certainly give all the players something to talk about." (UPI)
GRINCH ALERT! HOLIDAY CARE PACKAGES MEANT FOR TROOPS STOLEN: An outreach coordinator for Move America Forward in Sacramento said that 25 care packages intended for troops abroad were stolen. According to the coordinator, Scott Raab, 350 care packages which were meant to be holiday gifts for the troops were stored in a trailer on Sunday (December 16th) but someone broke into it and stole 25 of the packages. Raab said the packages include all kinds of things from deodorant and candy to letters from school kids, thanking them for their service. The organization is accepting donations to make up for the stolen gifts. (ABC)
A GUIDE TO 2012'S WORST WORDS: The list, compiled by The Atlantic Wire, includes such buzz terms as "butt-chugging", "brogrammer" and "Yolo" in addition to several over-used words like "artisanal" and "hipster." Head to the site for the full list, along with explanations: http://bit.ly/UIdDP7

THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW

INSTAGRAM: WE WON'T USE YOUR PHOTOS IN ADVERTISEMENTS: Instagram, a popular mobile photo-sharing service, announced late Tuesday (December 18th) that the company does not plan to use users' photos in advertisements. Instagram caused a stir when it released its new terms of service early Tuesday morning (December 18th) that said the company had the right to use users' photos in advertisements without consent or compensation. Instagram now says it will remove the language from its terms of service that suggests using users' photos in advertisements. However, Instagram maintains that it was created to become a business and would like to experiment with various forms of advertisements to make money. Currently, the free service does not run any ads. Facebook bought Instagram in September. (Fox News)
HOW TO THROW AN END OF THE WORLD PARTY BEFORE THE WORLD ENDS TOMORROW (The Stir):
Decorations: Okay, I looked around to see how people are visualizing this theme and found PartyCheap.com's suggestions -- kind of a Mayan/tropical thing going on. So pull out any tropical-themed stuff you can find at home or at the party supply store. Is it all from Hawaii? Oh well, Hawaii, Central America, whatever, close enough. Or just go for typical party decorations, like sparkly party hats.
See PartyCheap's suggestions here: http://tinyurl.com/7y9xteu
Food: I think at an End of the World party, you should eat like it's really your last day on Earth. What would you want your last meal to be? Buffalo wings and chocolate cupcakes? Ice cream scoops full of caviar? Kale salad with a side of wheat grass juice? Hey, I'm not here to judge. I'm just saying, think decadent.
Games: Limbo, obviously, because that's where many of us are probably headed. Also, Would You Rather -- as in, would you rather spend eternity in a pit of fire or doing long division? Would you rather go to hell with all your fun friends or to heaven with the dullest people you know?
Music. Basically it comes down to finding a playlist created by someone with similar tastes in music. Yay, someone already planned this part for you. Now dance away, dance away, dance away all!
Check out one suggested playlist here: http://tinyurl.com/bfdsu7r
SIX DATING BOOBY TRAPS YOU MAY ENCOUTER OVER THE HOLIDAYS (The Frisky):
1) That old saying about how a man treats his mother is true. A grown man who rolls his eyes and talks back to his mom, awful as she may be, has some respect issues. You'd better believe that someday he's not going to show respect to you either, unless he's thoroughly dealt with his issues regarding his mother. Conversely, men who put their mother up on a pedestal - "She can do no wrong!" - are to be feared also. Simply put, if something smells weird about his family dynamic, is probably is weird.
2) Sleeping in separate bedrooms sucks, but we all have to do it sometimes. When I was younger, I would be flattered if a guy who had me stay at his relatives' house or who came to stay at my parents' house insisted on sharing a bed. There was always some sneaking around the hallways after my parents went to sleep! However, as I've gotten older, I've realized that not being willing to follow the house rules is a little immature. It's just a night or two. He can deal with it. If he's expected to sleep in a separate bedroom, as obnoxious as I agree with you that that can be, he should sleep in a separate bedroom.
3) He should get off his ass, pitch in and help clean up. Where is he when it comes time to set the table or clear the plates? Does he lift a finger or is he already on the couch watching "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" with your uncles?
4) He can kick it with your nephew and your grandma. My personal theory about life is that anyone worth spending time with should be able to carry their own conversation with both a kindergartener and a grandma. They should also not accidentally drop the F-bomb in front of either of them.
5) He can deal with different religious traditions. Since religion is really important to some people (if not either of you in the relationship), how he behaves regarding your family's religious traditions is a peek into his character. Is your dude willing to attend Midnight Mass with your family even though he's an atheist? Anyone can handle one hour of church, just once. Does he explain to you what prayers are being said over his Jewish dinner table or does he let you sit there, squirming and confused? There's no need to make things more awkward on the holidays than they already are.
6) He brings a hostess gift (at the very least). The quickest way to make my mother hate you if she's had you over for the holidays (which she probably has, our family constantly invites guests to celebrate with us) is to not bring a hostess gift and not write a thank you note afterwards. A hostess gift can just be something small, like a candle or some pretty napkins. One of my platonic dude friend guests bought my parents a wine opener as a hostess gift and to this day, they rave about how he is the best person in the world, ever. And a thank you note should go without saying, but you would be shocked at how many people these days can't manage to write one. If your guy manages to buy a present for your folks, that's really nice, too. And of course, he should be gracious about any gift he receives, even if you both agree it is total crap your mom got on sale at TJ Maxx.
CUTE MISTLETOE PRANK: http://tinyurl.com/cv243sj
POTENTIALLY HABITABLE PLANET IS PRETTY CLOSE TO EARTH: A sun-like star nearby our solar system may host a planet that could potentially sustain life, astronomers say. The star is called Tau Ceti-- astronomers say it hosts five planets, and is less than 12-light-years from Earth. Astronomers say one of those planets has a minimum mass of 4.3-times that of Earth, and would be the smallest planet found in the habitable area of a sun-like star if it is confirmed. Researchers say the five planets will not be considered official discoveries until they are confirmed by further analysis or observation. The star Tau Ceti has been featured prominently in science fiction over the years due to it's proximity to Earth and sun-like nature. (Fox News)
COFFEE MAY LOWER RISK FOR ORAL CANCER FATALITIES: A new study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology links drinking more than four-cups of coffee per day with about a 50-percent drop in risk of dying from oral and pharyngeal cancers. The study was based on about 970-thousand people who were part of the Cancer Prevention Study II, who were followed for 26-years. Researchers say the link was found between drinking caffeinated coffee and the decreased in risk of death from oral and throat cancers. Researchers noted that a slight association was also found with decaffeinated coffee, but that it was not as strong as with caffeinated coffee. Researchers say that this is only an association, and more work is needed to figure out exactly what is at the root of this finding. (Huffington Post)
TIPS FOR AVOIDING GERMS WHILE DINING OUT (Women's Health):
1) Follow your nose. A restaurant should smell good. "It shouldn't smell dirty or contaminated," says says Donna Duberg, assistant professor of Clinical Laboratory Science at Saint Louis University. "The bathrooms should smell fresh and clean and not have a heavy odor of air fresheners that are covering up dirty odors," Duberg says. So if you smell anything other than the delicious food that's cooking, it might be time to try a new spot.
2) Take a look around. Any clean establishment will look clean and will have good cleaning habits. "There shouldn't be sticky tables," says Duberg. "That's where bacteria is going to breed, and where bacteria breed, viruses are right behind them." And take note of the color of the cloths employees use to wipe down the tables. They should be white and clean, and buckets of water should be clear, says Duberg. Also, be aware of whether or not your server or maître d' is sniffling or has a runny nose, she suggests.
3) Inspect the utensils. Your silverware and tableware shouldn't have remnants of a past meal. Silverware should also come wrapped in clean napkins. Plus, serving utensils shouldn't be transferred from one dish - and one person - to another, says Duberg.
4) Know when to stay in. "If your immune system is low - if you're stressed, or had a cold, for example - you can handle less bacteria and viruses effectively," according to Duberg. In this case, you might not want to expose your weakened system to germs that might make you get sick all over again. Plus, you don't want to be the person responsible for contaminating anyone else, do you?
TWENTY OF THE WEIRDEST PINTEREST PINS OF 2012: http://tinyurl.com/cxl49vm
FIVE TIPS FOR SAVING MONEY WHEN ONLINE SHOPPING (The Stir):
1) Try to order the majority from one place. Two words: Free. Shipping. The one thing that makes me consider braving the crowds is the fact that I won't have to pay for shipping. But most places will ship everything free if you're over a certain price (usual $50). Some even just have a free shipping period this time of year.
2) Google for coupon codes. I know, I know, most of the time the codes don't work. But sometimes they do. And it's worth a shot. Some sites I've had coupon code luck with are: Diapers.com; Yoyo.com; and Drugstore.com. (These sites, along with their sister sites, always have a crazy variety of products. You could probably get all your Christmas shopping done via them.)
3) Run more than one browser. Sign into your account with one, and be "unrecognized" with the other. Supposedly, sites know if you're a returning customer -- and they'll up the price a bit if you are. If you're visiting as a guest, you might be able to catch the difference in prices -- and snag the cheaper one.
4) Clear cookies from your browser. Same idea here, but you don't have to be running two browsers. If you can -- which you definitely might not be able to -- try clearing the cookies via the "help" or "preferences" tab on your computer. Cookies enable you to save your info on sites you frequent, letting companies know you're a returning customer. If they think you're "new", they'll be apt to lower prices for you.
5) Put an item in your basket -- then leave the site, abandoning your cart. Sometimes you might get a follow up email from the company, offering the product at a lower price. They're trying to win you back because they thought you left -- better they get some money out of you than none, right?
??? TRIVIA ???
How many cubs do polar bears usually have at one time?
A: Females give birth in winter, usually to twins.
Source: National Geographic
What color skin do polar bears have?
A: Black. Their white coat provides camouflage in surrounding snow and ice, but under their fur they have black skin - the better to soak in the sun's warming rays.
Source: National Geographic

 
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