But no ticket yet, so, overall…

…good news.

Because what's the rush?

Mathematicians find a cheaper, slower way to get to Mars

We would have guessed rounding error, but…

Some Guy in Seattle writes:

Ok, so explain this to me like I’m the village idiot. I can see fining Marshawn for being crude, but $11,050? What’s up with the $50? Was the NFL short about $50 this month?

…since you point out Detroit Lions defensive end Ziggy Ansah was fined $22,050, a similarly curious amount, for an infraction the same week, we’re thinking probably they just ran out of pretzels in the commissioner’s box.

Avoid work at the speed of light

15 Iphone (sic) Apps To Be Even Lazier in 2015

"Luckily there is a slew of tech entrepreneurs (wunderkinds and wannabes alike) out to help us on this noble mission."

Crank up that popcorn machine, Maud

First, a noisy spat with (maybe) North Korea turns watching a B-grade buddy movie into some kind of national obligation ("Call it a blow for capitalism over a communist dictatorship!” blurbs the New York Daily News). Now Egypt gets into the act, banning the movie, Exodus, for “historical inaccuracies” and Pakistan joins the fun, getting all furious over the TV show, Homeland, “ which they say portrays their country as an ugly, ignorant, terror-plagued ‘hellhole’,” according to the New York Post. 

Looks like the birth of a whole new marketing plan to me. Maybe we can get the Art Institute to call for a boycott of Big Eyes.


"Peace on earth" is so yesterday

Fischer: Jesus Would Support The Use Of Torture | Right Wing Watch

"'Christianity is not a pacifist religion,' Fischer said. "

And non-fattening, too

Relaxing Ambient Bacon Sounds - BaconSizzling.com

The poetry of work avoidance


This is not very interesting
But if
You have read this far already
You will
Read as far as this:
And still
Not really accomplishing
Anything at all…


Is it stupid to buy a tomato in December, in New England?

Well, yes. Actually it’s stupid to buy a tomato around here at any time of the year. I haven’t seen a decent store-bought tomato in a decade, at least. But it looked good and I couldn’t resist. So what I’m having for lunch is a bologna and cardboard sandwich, on whole wheat. And hooray for the guy who invented mustard. 

Nothing is forever

Jeb Bush resigns from company that cashed in on Obamacare - NY Daily News

"The company paid Bush $2.3 million from 2007-13, not including lucrative stock worth several million more, according to American Thinker."


OK, just for an hour or so…

…classical Christmas music from iTunes radio while I’m chopping up the veggies for jambalaya.

Chrysler is now an "outpost"

Chrysler Renamed FCA US LLC in North America

"The name change aligns the company's North American outpost with its global parent company, which earlier this year was renamed Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (FCA)."

Free speech bombs, says Post

Viewers should take a pass on ‘The Interview’ | New York Post

"‘5 minutes into The Interview, I am considering calling to request a bombing of my TV,’ comedian Lamarr Wilson tweeted."


Merry Christmas to All, From the Midwest and Elsewhere Bureau!

NORAD tracks Santa

Official NORAD Santa Tracker

Because of course.

Buckeyes are nuts

Officials order Ohio man to take down zombie Nativity scene

If you get going now, there's still time

Need to Detect Santa Claus? This Patent Can Help

"And, as the owner of the patent stopped paying its fees sometime over the last two decades, its design has entered the public domain. You, too, can install a Santa Claus Detector in your home, and you won’t even be breaking the law."

Maybe the most amusing part of the whole Sony hack story…

Meet Lizard Squad, the group that may have helped North Korea hack Sony

"In those initial weeks, the hackers showed a remarkable understanding of how to manipulate the American media into covering the emails. It was always strange to imagine North Korean hackers being that savvy about American media."

…is the so-called media’s puppyish faith it’s difficult to manipulate. Seriously. It’s kind of touching.


Know somebody who has everything?

We think not.

Our policy is…

…go out and do your errands now when it’s just raining a little because tomorrow it might be raining a lot. And even more Thursday. Our forecast here is not for a white Christmas, but warm and muddy. Which is fine with me (I make a lousy New Englander; I don’t like apples much either, and cranberries you can keep). We have, in fact, had a fairly mild December, which is also fine with me. 

Bacon bowls? Really?

Perfect Bacon™ Bowl | Official TV Site

But not for soup, this woman claims.

If you're looking for a movie this weekend…

…and you haven’t seen Jersey Boys yet see, well, Jersey Boys

Who needs ISIS when we've got TSA?

Delta baggage handler accused of smuggling guns - CNN.com

"Atlanta (CNN) -- A baggage handler for Delta Air Lines moved a lot more than just luggage, authorities say -- he also helped smuggle firearms.
"And his accomplice managed to board a flight with 18 guns and ammunition in his carry-on bag, an affidavit states."

(Emphasis added.)

The train! The train!

Amtrak arrives in Greenfield: First run full of celebration | The Recorder

"Drivers waited at railroad crossings and residents leaned out of their homes along the tracks Monday as an Amtrak passenger train rumbled through…"

Imagine the joy.

How many guesses do we get?

What causes a beer belly?

Let's hear it for Bears' "closer loss"

Chicago Bears tap Jimmy Clausen and TV ratings climb - Chicago Business Journal

"But this was a different kind of loss for the Bears.
For one thing, it was a closer loss than most this season."

Nicely done, Apple

Apple pushes first ever automated security update to Mac users | Reuters

"'The update is seamless,' he said. 'It doesn’t even require a restart.'"

A notification popped up this morning and it took me a few minutes to figure out why. This. And, good.


But does she get frequent rider points?

D.C. judge resorts to matchmaking in effort to end 30 years of 911 calls - The Washington Post

"Since the 1980s, Rigsby, 59, has logged thousands of 911 calls and ambulance rides for apparent fainting spells that have sent her falling to the ground. Medical and mental health experts have disagreed about what causes the episodes."

Can you spell "corrupt"?

That’s rich! Why so many wealthy Americans think they’re middle class - Salon.com

“[Treasury Secretary Jack] Lew was given a $940,000 bonus from Citigroup in the same week the bank received a $300 billion bailout from the federal government."

It's stuff you should already know…

Why Your Passwords Are Easy To Hack | TIME

…but if you haven’t already got one of the password managers mentioned here (I like 1Password), get with the program. 

Does Jen forgive Angie or does she not?

It’s driving me nuts. Also, it’s driving up my grocery bill. I have to keep going through the line to find out. 

Whoever settles this will probably get a Nobel prize.

And deserve it.

And we still have ten days to go

This Is the Stupidest Anti-Science Bullshit of 2014 | Mother Jones

Don't confuse us with the facts

Security experts: FBI report light on evidence linking North Korea to Sony hack (+video) - CSMonitor.com

"Many prominent names in the field, Graham and others, took to Twitter to express their concern. 'I'm completely underwhelmed by the FBI's 'proof' attributing Sony attack to North Korea,' Graham tweeted from his @ErrataRob account.  "

We're not holding our breath

NBA prepares for Christmas coming-out party

Keeps on giving

Gun Range Billboard Features Santa Claus Packing Heat

"Co-owner Steve Dyke said the local gun range had to come up with something creative to attract customers."


Ho ho ho

iTunes lists the movie, Die Hard, as an “alternative Christmas classic.” In case you’re looking for something alternative to watch.

Bottoms up

Ohio ranked 10th best state where Santa could relocate when polar ice caps melt - Toledo Blade

"Washington ranked No. 1 because… ‘When it comes to eggnog consumption, there’s no state that’s more enthused for this alcoholic holiday beverage than the Evergreen State…"

So when they say the officials stole the game…

State school athletics group doesn’t conduct criminal background checks on referees - Sports - The Boston Globe

Who's naughty or nice

US mulls putting NKorea on terrorism sponsor list

"Pledging to respond 'proportionately,' the president said the U.S. would examine the facts to determine whether North Korea should land back on the terrorism sponsors list."

Didn't he say this six years ago?

Obama vows 'do everything I can' to close Guantanamo: CNN interview - Yahoo News

"Obama promised to shut the internationally condemned prison when he took office nearly six years ago…"

That’s what I thought.

And now, more light each day

Big Christmas storm remains likely across the eastern United States and into Canada - The Washington Post

"Given temperatures running way above normal across much of the eastern United States (it could be the warmest Christmas Eve in a long time for New England), the predominant precipitation type from this storm system is likely to be rain. Even up north of the border."

In Japan, it's a dog's life

Japan’s pet owners shower furry ones with holiday gifts, cakes and even vacations - The Washington Post

"It’s not unusual to see people pushing a dog, or three, in a stroller. Like baby strollers, they come in a wide variety, from the basic $80 model to the SUV-equivalent with air-filled tires and the option of facing forward or to the rear. The Primo ‘pet buggy’ with bassinet function costs upwards of $400."

A little too much nog

Elf found passed out facing drunk driving charges | New York Post

"Lt. James Macintosh says the Cedar Grove man was asleep behind the wheel of a van with its engine running, lights on and music blaring. He says Chellis was in a red shirt, red pants, and white ruffled collar."

But what if he’d passed out facing away from the charges?