Saturday, April 15, 2006

You heard it here first, folks:
Seriously, if I weren't so lazy, this could become a perfectly viable daily feature. "Silly things on CNN's 'Latest News' list," I could call it.

Good news for tax day: the Cheneys will be receiving a tax refund of $1.9 million. Who says the Bush tax cuts haven't helped the middle class?

As a result, the Cheneys' taxable income was $1.96 million. In a statement, the White House said that over the course of the year, the couple paid $2.5 million in taxes through withholding and estimated tax payments, in part to deal with the exercise of the stock options. Given that their 2005 taxes are a little over half a million dollars, they are due a refund of about $1.9 million, the statement said.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

From The Onion:

Packers To Favre: 'Take Your Time, Asshole'
April 13, 2006 | Onion Sports

ASHWAUBENON, WI—Green Bay Packers front-office officials have informed three-time MVP Brett Favre they can wait for his decision on whether or not he's planning to retire for "as long as it fucking takes." "This is a big decision for Brett Favre, and we can't deny that he's the heart and soul of our team, the most important Packer, the most important person in all of America, and the center of the whole entire universe," Packer general manager Ted Thompson said Tuesday. "It's not like we have to make any major decisions that all hinge on whether or not he's returning, after all. We'll just ride around on our lawn tractors on our farm in Mississippi while we wait for him to make up his goddamn mind." Favre would not say when he might announce his decision, admitting that he was "too much in awe of what Mr. Brilliant Genius Thompson did with the 4-12 Packers last year" to commit one way or the other.

An utterly bizarre ad for the Citi Professional card, which I thought I should share with you, my loyal readers:
Seriously, what the hell? This is a picture of a 40-year-old man in a green suit and a red shirt, riding a scooter and carrying a bag designed for a high school girl. Is the point "Use this card to buy things that will make you look as unprofessional as a 40-year-old wearing a suit can possibly look"? Because if it is, that's uncanny.

The University of Georgia's student newspaper serves up this wonderful story highlighting the exemplary conduct of a couple of ATF agents, on campus for an unrelated training session, who recognized danger... and took it down. Now, sure, you pessimists will probably point out that the danger in question was a kid who dressed up as a ninja for a party - a kid whose entire costume consisted of putting a bandana over his face - but I think it's more important to focus on what these guys did right. Imagine if that had been an actual ninja they forcibly subdued? Then who'd be laughing?

"Seeing someone with something across the face, from a federal standpoint — that’s not right," McLemore said, explaining why agents believed something to be amiss.
"From a state or local standpoint... well, I can't really speculate. But yeah, federally, they teach us that on Day 1: 'something across the face is not right.' And then later that day we learn about how to overreact to things."

(Link courtesy of Last Call.)

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

From the middle of Chuck Klosterman's lengthy piece on Bonds and steroids comes this amusing summary the country's last five years:

In November 2000, the United States held a presidential election, and nobody knew who won, so we just kind of made up an outcome and tried to act like that was normal. Less than a year later, airplanes flew into office buildings, and everybody cried for two months. And then Enron went bankrupt, and the U.S. started acting like a rogue state, and 'The Simple Life' premiered, and gasoline became unaffordable, and our Olympic basketball team lost to Puerto Rico, and we reelected the same president we never really elected in the first place. Later, there would be some especially devastating hurricanes and three Oscars for an especially bad movie called 'Crash.'

Things, as they say, have been better.

My thanks to Deadspin and TNR's The Plank, who collectively pointed me to this terrific essay by former DeLay communications director John Feehery. The entire thing is a great read, but the highlight's got to be the part that both of the aforementioned blogs quoted:

In the meantime, [Ed] Buckham had become DeLay's chief of staff. He eventually hired me as Tom's communications director and Tony Rudy as press secretary. But he was brutal in firing some of DeLay's previous staffers. His win-at-all-costs attitude played out in strange ways around the office. He ran a fantasy baseball league that he always seemed to win, even if it meant browbeating young staffers into trading their best players to him.
I understand the win-at-all-costs thing in, say, politics, but fantasy baseball? Where's the fun?

Monday, April 10, 2006

Sportscenter just ran a great feature on Darren Daulton, who, since retiring nine years ago, has apparently gone (as John Kruk put it) "crazynuts."1 Daulton believes in what he calls "metaphysics," and is utterly convinced that he has "skipped through time" and "experienced astral travel." (In a perhaps-related note, his second DUI prompted the court to order him into detox; he attended, but refuses to admit that he has a problem with alcohol.) He also believes that on October 12, 2012,2 those who are "ready" will be taken to a "new spiritual plane." (Though to be fair, he does caution that he "[doesn't] know that it will be the end of the world.")

The best part, which made me laugh out-fucking-loud, was the endcap that the anchor put on the piece,3 without so much as a hint of a smile: "Daulton [continues to believe in metaphysics], but says that he would put his studies aside... if he is offered a managerial position." Emphasis obviously added.

I live for this.
1 - Kruk was only saying that as a characterization of what other people say; he personally continues to "stand behind" his friend Dutchie.
2 - I think that was the date; it was somewhere around then.
3 - I'm pretty sure it was Rece Davis.