Friday—and especially a Friday when everybody's obsessed with the Super Bowl—is a perfect time to announce YA war

US Trainers To Deploy To Ukraine:

"WASHINGTON — American soldiers will deploy to Ukraine this spring to begin training four companies of the Ukrainian National Guard, the head of US Army Europe Lt. Gen Ben Hodges said during his first visit to Kiev on Wednesday."

But everybody loves acronyms

Most View the CDC Favorably; VA’s Image Slips | Pew Research Center for the People and the Press

"Most View the CDC Favorably; VA’s Image Slips More Partisan Opinions of the EPA, CIA"


The real scandal is, nobody’s been able to come up with anything more creative than “-gate” for forty freaking years.

Luckily, "12" comes with a spare

The Seattle Seahawks Are Actually Trying to Trademark the Number 12 | Bleacher Report

“…the team is looking for a full numerical takeover by coining '12'—a mathematical object used the world over in practices of counting and computing—as its own thing."

We’ll go with “dozen."

(And by the way, we’re thinking the word should be “numeral.”)

(And can we call this 12gate?)

Send 'em all back to high school, where they belong

Obama administration livid at Netanyahu’s plan to visit Congress | New York Post

"The Obama administration is livid over Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s planned visit to Congress in March — and now, ‘there will be a price’ to pay, according to reports.…
"‘He spat in our face publicly and that’s no way to behave,’ a senior American official said."

Clears that right up

Winter Storm Iola could undergo 'bombogenesis': forecasters - NY Daily News

"'Bombs are so-named because of the rapidity with which they develop, which evokes explosiveness, and the power that they usually attain once they have gone through the intensification phase specified...' he wrote for their website."

It’s snowing here but it doesn’t look bombo to me. 

Let's have a Lawyer Bowl

Cowboys fan sues NFL for $88 billion over reversed call 


You'll never get a better excuse than this

Staying Home & Watching TV May Reduce Flu Spread - Yahoo News

This is called, by the public health experts these days, “social distancing,” although back in Nebraska, in the 1940’s, it was called quarantine—and it happened a lot. Somebody in the family came down with measles, mumps, chicken pox, whooping cough, or a host of other maladies, and a guy from the health department would arrive and tack a QUARANTINE sign on the front door. Until the sign came down (with a doctor’s certificate), only one family member—usually the “breadwinner” (the person with the job)—and, of course, a doctor, was allowed to enter or leave the house. 

The efficiency of large families back then was that, with contagious illnesses, usually all the kids would get sick at once. So with maybe six or eight quarantines, you could get your whole brood grown up and out.

Doubtless the most depressing question I've ever heard

Nice job!

They’ve become so good at manufacturing those horrible fake plastic things they now actually look like tomatoes. Or, enough like tomatoes to fool me on a bad day, which today apparently is. The bad news is they still don’t taste like tomatoes at all.

The good news is the great ice sheet has retreated, at least somewhat, uncovering a lot (but not all) of the sidewalk and allowing me to haul home enough groceries, hopefully, to survive the great nor’easter now bearing down. The bad (but not very) news is this nor’easter might dump four inches of snow on us (National Weather Service); the good news is (Weather Underground), maybe only three. Or five (wait, that’s bad). The good news is, I don’t have to go out again until it’s over.

The bad news is, staying indoors all day makes me grumpy.

Tell us what you really think

The Fate of Ukraine | The XX Committee

"Kyiv is a paper tiger, the Europeans are cowered in the corner, terrified of the Kremlin’s next move, while Obama is talking tough about how Russia is losing this conflict, despite the fact that obviously it is not. As usual, Obama is all vapid and chest-puffing talk, coupled with very little action."

Darwin grins

Doctors Hope Disneyland's Measles Outbreak Will Be A 'Wake Up Call' For Parents | ThinkProgress

"Recent studies have found that unvaccinated people tend to cluster together in the same community, which allows contagious diseases to spread. "

They are certainly making progress in DC

Watch a US Senator Cite the Bible to Prove That Humans Aren't Causing Global Warming | Mother Jones

"The amendment passed 98-1, and the Senate was on record agreeing to the obvious fact that climate change sometimes occurs."

Bet you never saw this question coming

Who Is the Next Al Gore?

Never, ever, since whatever last week's Great Panic was…

Bill Belichick can’t help but channel his inner Richard Nixon | New York Post

…(Ebola seems so long ago, doesn’t it?) has any controversy been so all-consuming as the matter of the New England Patriot’s flat balls. And (wait for it now…here it comes) the integrity of the game. I just keep having an overpowering urge to stand up and sing, “Oh say can you see…."

I confess I’m no Pat’s fan. Even though I’ve lived more years in eastern seaboard states now, I'm still a midwesterner at heart. It’s the Bears for me (and the Cubs—which should tell you all you need to know about my sporting acumen, right there). But post-season entertainment is where you find it, and this week it’s Belichick & Brady bringing the good ol’ stuff


No, Bunky, there is no end

Gun Lobbyists Seek Extraordinary Veto Power Over Attorney General Nominee | ThinkProgress

"The National Rifle Association, which is actually perceived as relatively moderate compared to Gun Owners of America…"

We're not getting all weird and paranoid about this or anything, but…

Super Water-Repellent Metal Makes Droplets Bounce Off It

"The research into the metal was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the United States Air Force Office of Scientific Research…"


'American Sniper' Great War Movie - 'American Sniper' Review - Esquire

“…going to a Hollywood movie for a history lesson is like going to a brothel for a lecture in philosophy. You're in the wrong place."

Fashion label launches high-tech, stylish men’s suit | Boston Herald

"Ever wish you could wear a comfy sweatsuit to a board meeting?"

If you've been not fired recently, raise your hand

It’s official: Rosie Perez not fired from ‘The View’ 

When these guys say entertainment, they really mean it

Sony execs bracing for more leaked emails | Page Six

"Top executives at Sony Music are bracing for more embarrassing e-mails to leak as part of the Sony hack after their boss — Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton — called to offer a ‘blanket apology’ in advance of any details that come out, sources exclusively tell Page Six."

Wait, what?

Barack Obama’s State of the Union tax proposal: The president’s program will expose Republicans’ unwillingness to fight inequality.

“The most notable Republican reaction to President Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday night did not come from official respondent Joni Ernst, the rookie senator from Red Oak, Iowa, with the camouflage high heels."

This underinflation thing is catching on

Woman showcased by Obama in State of the Union is a former Democratic campaign staffer | Fox News

"Rebekah Erler has been presented by the White House as a woman who was discovered by the president after she wrote to him last March about her economic hardships. She was showcased in the speech as proof that middle class Americans are coming forward to say that Obama’s policies are working.

"Unmentioned in the White House bio of Erler is that she is a former Democratic campaign operative, working as a field organizer for Sen. Patty Murray (D., Wash.)."

Where is this "Colorado" place, anyway?

Baker faces complaint for refusing to write anti-gay message on cake 

"We should all be loving each other."

Well, it's not Ebola, but at least it's something to obsess about while waiting for the Super Bowl

Measles Outbreak At Disneyland Spreads To Other States : NPR

"California health officials say more than 4 dozen cases of measles have been diagnosed in the state — a result of an outbreak that started at Disneyland. Most who got sick were not vaccinated."


A whole lot of like

Facebook now crops up in a third of divorce cases over cheating and old flames - Mirror Online:

Because we can never have too many

The honor of Paris

This is getting serious.
Paris wants to sue Fox News because, hey, they're not Charlie.

I say, let 'em. Viva la whatever.

France is our oldest ally, going back to before we were we. If it weren't for France, we might still be speaking English. Or we might have wound up like Canada, those poor guys. Or Australia—grown men talking about their barbies.

We owe plenty to France. Why don't we just give 'em Fox News as bonus?

A buck a sniff

N.H. Lottery introduces bacon-scented scratch-off ticket - NY Daily News

"The 'I Heart Bacon Scratch Ticket' costs $1 and offers a grand prize of $1,000, reports WMUR."

Bring it

Lupica: Bill Belichick, Tom Brady quite a pair of villains - NY Daily News

"You know what the Patriots of Belichick and Brady really are, now more than ever? They are the biggest team we have in sports and the baddest. Now it is being reported that they took air out of some footballs last Sunday, and that they somehow needed that edge as they were kicking the Indianapolis Colts all the way to Rhode Island. You see once more why people either love the Patriots or love to hate them."


Save the barley!

Craft Beer Uses Four Times as Much Barley As Corporate Brew | Mother Jones

I am definitely with the R's on this

Charlie Hebdo Pencils to Go Up at SOTU - The Daily Beast

"Several lawmakers plan to raise yellow pencils during tonight's State of the Union address when PresidentObama mentions the deadly Charlie Hebdo attacks.…As of Tuesday afternoon, no Republicans had indicated to Moore's office that they would be joining the initiative. "

Why don’t they call the roll, see if anybody had even heard of that magazine before it became a fetish to be “Charlie.” That, I’d like to know.

Some forced to watch Super Bowl ad before they have to

A False Start for The Verge’s Super Bowl Ad | FishbowlNY

Is that even legal?

Oh those French, such dreamers they are

Paris Mayor Plans to Sue Fox News | TIME

"Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo said in an interview Tuesday that she plans to sue the American network Fox News after it broadcast inaccurate reports on Muslim ‘no-go zones’ in the French capital, in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attacks."

A hoot

French Comedians Parody Terrified Fox Reporters In Paris 'No-Go Zones' (VIDEO)

Robert E. Lee might have been George Washington?

Robert E. Lee’s Southern tragedy: The rebel general who might have been George Washington - Salon.com:

Really? But he wasn’t? So who was he then?

Or wait. Is this some kind of joke?

There'll always be an England

Bye, bye boobs — After 45 years, Page 3 puts its shirt on - Salon.com:

"In a move that vaguely suggests the Murdoch empire may be taking one small move toward entering the 21st century, the British tabloid The Sun is reportedly dropping its famed topless Page 3 feature. The Times – which is under the same publisher – announced Tuesday that after 45 years, Friday’s print edition was the last to feature a shirt-free Page 3 girl."

Wait, you mean these Muslims have free speech rights too?

De Blasio travels to Paris to show support after massacre | New York Post

"Hundreds of thousands of Muslims packed a central square in Russia to rally against Charlie Hebdo cartoons, which a Chechen leader called ‘immoral.’ And hundreds of Afghans demonstrated by burning a French flag."

This is getting confusing.

I’m not sure De Blasio is the guy to clear it up.

Aren't these newspaper guys supposed to have editors?

From the first two stories I read this morning:

'Taken 3' firearm supplier calls for boycott against Neeson - NY Daily News

"In the wake of the 'Taken 3' star's comments labeling lax U.S. gun laws 'a disgrace,' the firearm manufacturer that armed the film with is calling for an industry-wide boycott of gun suppliers for Neeson's future movies."

‘American Sniper’ helped at box office by conservatives - NY Daily News

"‘B’ut you also can’t discount the conservative audiences.’"

(Emphasis added.)

What does this guy have against rabbits, anyway?

Pope: Good Catholics don’t have to breed 'like rabbits' - NY Daily News

"While the 78-year-old reaffirmed the Catholic Church's historical rejection of birth control, 'this does not mean a Christian must make children one after another,' he said."



Now you don't even need a degree to sound like one

Write Your Own Academic Sentence

From bad to a whole lot worse

Tehran vows to punish “Zionists” for death of Iranian general

"Iranian Gen. Mohammad Ali Allah Dadi was among the six Iranian army officers killed in Sunday’s Israeli helicopter attack on a group of Hizballah and Iranian officers checking out a Syrian Golan site for a new Hizballah offensive …"

Forget "fire" and "the wheel," this is the invention we've been waiting for

Ellie Krieger’s smoked paprika oven fries - The Washington Post

"These are so good, I would go so far as to say I prefer them over regular fries, because they are enticingly crisp, taste somehow more potato-y, and have no greasiness.


Also, hold the fries

Man ticketed in Georgia for eating burger while driving - NY Daily News

"‘The officer explained to me that he observed me eating a burger for two miles,’ Turner told WSB-TV. ‘He said specifically three times, 'you can’t just go down the road eating a hamburger.'’"

Don't mess with these Illinois girls

Central Illinois Xpress Emerge as Unlikely Force in Fifth-Grade League - NYTimes.com

"The players go by nicknames like Koko, Beans and Flash. They try to color-coordinate their socks. And they have gone about the hard business of winning basketball games — as the only team of girls in the league — with the cool, calculated approach of tax auditors."

R's oppose tax increases

You had me right up to "ice-holes"


"About 10% of people participating in the poll held on December 19-22 among 1600 residents in 134 Russian cities, town and villages, tell about their plans to bathe in Epiphany ice-holes."

Another thing to fight about, hooray!

Uproar after Miss Israel’s selfie with Miss Lebanon | New York Post

"‘Since the first day of my arrival to participate to Miss Universe, I was very cautious to avoid being in any photo or communication with Miss Israel ([who] tried several times to have a photo with me),’ this year’s Miss Lebanon Saly Greige, who is set to compete in the Miss Universe contest in Miami on Jan. 25, wrote on her Facebook. "

There'll always be an England

British man arrested for trying to have sex with mailbox - NY Daily News

Looking at a long week

It's 32º, the sidewalks are coated with ice from one end to the other, and that was absolutely the ugliest win I have ever seen. Ever.

Don't get too chirpy there, Birds fans. It's New England next.


(OK, they ain't da Bears, but) Go Pack

At least they’re close.

(I know, I know.)

Wait. What happened there?

Faux spring fever

It’s already (freezing) raining and the sidewalks and streets are coated with ice but we might get over freezing later today, hooray. It might even stay over freezing until suppertime tomorrow. I may take a nice, long spring nap.

And they say they don't believe in evolution

Mitt Flips On The Very Poor - The Daily Beast

"Mitt 3.0 is now calling for helping the very poor after writing off 47 percent of the country as government moochers in 2012."

More bigotry is just what we need, says the Heritage Foundation

33 Policies Obama Should Talk About in State of the Union 2015

"Protect religious liberty in the marriage debate. Obama himself said that there are people of goodwill on both sides of the marriage debate, people he respects. The government should respect them too. So Obama should support the Marriage and Religious Freedom Act, which prohibits the government from discriminating against any individual or group, whether nonprofit or for-profit, based on their beliefs that marriage is the union of a man and woman or that sexual relations are reserved for marriage. The government should be prohibited from discriminating against such groups or individuals in tax policy, employment, licensing, accreditation or contracting."

But we are not worried because, as a commentor points out, “[Obama] is a despotic islamist dictator who is going to do whatever he wants while he is still in office."

Or wait, maybe we are worried.